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8:33 AM 8/15/2018 – “Trump-Russia Affair” as the Leftist cover of the German Intelligence. | Karl Marx 2018 anniversary: 200 Years! Happy Birthday, Karl!

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Karl Marx as Rubber Ducky, with a copy of 'Das Kapital' in hand (Reuters/W. Rattay)

Karlito The Duck

HOW KARL MARX BECAME A POP ICON

Bathe with Marx!

… rubber duckies, replete with Marx’s masterpiece, “Das Kapital,” in their hands. Other souvenirs include mouse pads with the phrase “Karl has sent you a friend request. The question remains: have the people of Trier always been so excited about their hometown hero or do they still feel insulted that he turned his back on them so soon after leaving school?

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Bolton to Stop in Israel Ahead of Meeting with Russians | The Jewish Press – JewishPress.com | David Israel | 4 Elul 5778 – August 15, 2018
Bolton To Meet Russian Official In Geneva Next Week
Tourists snap up ′zero euro′ bills with Karl Marx′s image | Lifestyle | DW
Kim Philby: The Secret Story Behind the Soviet Union’s Most Successful Mole in the UK – YouTube
Rapprochement With Russia Is Now a Core Policy Objective for Germany
RUSSIA: GERHARD SCHROEDER VISIT LATEST – YouTube
Mueller Is Closing in on Roger Stone
Beethoven Silence – YouTube

 

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Trump refuses to denounce Putin over election meddling at summit …

CNBCJul 16, 2018
I have great confidence in my intelligence people, but I will tell you that … is not going to interfere into internal American affairs including election process,” … War to nuclear nonproliferation, critics are likely to seize on what was left …. Germany’s foreign minister Heiko Maas told a German newspaper group …
The Early Edition: July 16, 2018
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Trump sides with Putin over US intelligence

CNNJul 16, 2018
Trump had previously said he sided with his intelligence … “Russia has never interfered in and is not going to interfere in US internal affairs, including the …. But he kept German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Ukrainian … men were left alone — save for a pair of interpreters — for the first meeting of the day.
Why Trump won’t cancel the Putin summit
In-DepthPoliticoJul 15, 2018
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Read the full transcript of the Helsinki press conference

VoxJul 16, 2018
Now it’s portrayed almost as a historic event, although it should have been just a current affair, … Clearly, there are some challenges left — we were not able to clear …. I’m not sure necessarily that it’s in the best interests of Germany or not. …. We have solid reason to believe that some intelligence officers, …
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11:51 AM 8/9/2018 – Hermeneutic Analysis in Political Criminology …

globalsecuritynews.org/…by…/hermeneutic-analysis-in-political-criminology-and-intel…

I (or hypothetically any observer, interpreter, or commentator in the field of the …. marx as demiurge – Google Search · stalin as demiurge – Google Search · i-stalin …. Lightning injures several at family birthday party | News | DW | 29.07.2018 …… Of The “Trump – Russia Affair” – By Michael Novakhov – Update June 27, 2018 …

“Outrage seems transnational”… Demiurge as Deer Hunter… “The …

globalsecuritynews.org/2018/…/outrage-seems-transnational-demiurge-as-deer-hunter…

Jul 24, 2018 – The names included: Romano Prodi, a former prime minister of Italy Adolfo … 8:22 PM 7/18/2018 – Miami Dade planes crash | Mazatzal casino robbery … RT @CatoInstitute: Free market capitalism has delivered what Marx had long …… Hypothesis” Of The “Trump – Russia Affair” – ByMichael Novakhov …

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“Outrage seems transnational”… Demiurge as Deer Hunter… “The …

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Jul 24, 2018 – The names included: Romano Prodi, a former prime minister of Italy Adolfo … 8:22 PM 7/18/2018 – Miami Dade planes crash | Mazatzal casino robbery … RT @CatoInstitute: Free market capitalism has delivered what Marx had long …… Hypothesis” Of The “Trump – Russia Affair” – ByMichael Novakhov …

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“Einfach unerträglich”: Schröder kritisiert Maas im Fall Özil scharf

Süddeutsche.deJul 25, 2018
Der frühere Bundeskanzler und SPD-Vorsitzende Gerhard Schröder hat Außenminister Heiko Maas (SPD) für Äußerungen zum Fall Mesut Özil scharf kritisiert.
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Indiana’s Dan Coats caught in Trumpian maelstrom

South Bend TribuneJul 23, 2018
… Germans who turned out to show solidarity with America, with a visibly moved Coats embracing a clench-jawed German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder.
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Chinese Tourists Splurge on Karl Marx Zero-euro Banknote

Jing Travel3 minutes ago
What better way to celebrate the 200-year anniversary of Karl Marx’s birth than … travelers, few can provide a stronger pitch than Trier in 2018.

25000 souvenir banknotes of Karl Marx sold to Chinese collectors

Global Times20 hours ago
25,000 souvenir banknotes of Karl Marx sold to Chinese collectors … May 5, 2018 marked the 200th anniversary of Marx’s birth with …

Seminar to mark Karl Marx‘s200th birth anniversary

The HinduJul 19, 2018
As part of the 200th birth anniversary of philosopher Karl Marx, Navakarnataka Publication and Priya Publication have jointly planned a …
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The German city beloved by Chinese

BBC NewsJul 26, 2018
In honour of the 200th anniversary of Marx’s birth in 2018, zero Euro notes emblazoned with the philosopher’s face (printed on the same paper …
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Karl Marx exhibition in Beijing receives 2 mln visitors

XinhuaAug 5, 2018
BEIJING, Aug. 5 (Xinhua) — A three-month exhibition to mark the 200th anniversary of Karl Marx’sbirth, which closed Sunday, has received …
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Tourists snap up ‘zero euro’ bills with Karl Marx’s image

Deutsche Welle2 hours ago
Tourists snap up ‘zero euro’ bills with Karl Marx’s image … introduced in commemoration of the German philosopher’s 200th birthday, says Hans-Albert Becker of …

25000 souvenir banknotes of Karl Marx sold to Chinese collectors

Global Times20 hours ago
Another Taobao seller who has sold dozens told the Global Times that Marx’s 200th birth anniversaryfueled the souvenir’s popularity.
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Deutsche Marx: ‘0 Euro’ Bills With Philosopher’s Face Selling Like …

Sputnik InternationalAug 13, 2018
The bills, issued in honor of the 200th anniversary of Marx’s birth, marked on May 5, sold out their original 5,000 notes in less than a month, …
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Karl Marx exhibition in Beijing receives 2 mln visitors

XinhuaAug 5, 2018
BEIJING, Aug. 5 (Xinhua) — A three-month exhibition to mark the 200th anniversary of Karl Marx’sbirth, which closed Sunday, has received …
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The German city beloved by Chinese

BBC NewsJul 26, 2018
In honour of the 200th anniversary of Marx’s birth in 2018, zero Euro notes emblazoned with the philosopher’s face (printed on the same paper …
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Another Surprise Meeting With Putin. This Time, It’s Merkel.

New York TimesAug 13, 2018
BERLIN — Chancellor Angela Merkel of Germany will host President Vladimir V. Putin of Russia for talks near Berlin this weekend, in a surprise …
Merkel to meet Putin on August 18
POLITICO.euAug 13, 2018
Merkel to meet Putin on Saturday for talks on Ukraine and Syria
InternationalThe Local GermanyAug 13, 2018
From refugees to Russia: Angela Merkel’s foreign policy problems
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Details of PutinMerkel surprise meeting unveiled

Pravda19 hours ago
Russian President Vladimir Putin and German Chancellor Angela Merkel plan to discuss a variety of topical issues, including sanctions, the …
War and fuel: Angela Merkel’s headaches in Russia talks
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Bolton To Meet Russian Official In Geneva Next Week

RadioFreeEurope/RadioLiberty45 minutes ago
Although the White House did not name the Russian official, Bolton’s counterpart is widely considered to be Nikolai Patrushev, the secretary of …
Bolton to Stop in Israel Ahead of Meeting with Russians
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Russian Representatives to Meet with US National Security Adviser …
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Washington’s Bolton may meet Russian security official by end of …

ReutersJul 27, 2018
Washington’s Bolton may meet Russian security official by end of … may meet the secretary of Russia’s Security Council, Nikolai Patrushev, by …
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Bolton May Meet Russian Security Official By End of Summer

Voice of AmericaJul 27, 2018
U.S. National Security Adviser John Bolton may meet the secretary of Russia’s Security Council, Nikolai Patrushev, by the end of summer, …
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Russia Prepares for Moscow Meet With US National Security Advisor …

Al-BawabaJul 28, 2018
Russia is preparing for a meeting of Russian Security Council Secretary Nikolay Patrushev with U.S. National Security Advisor John Bolton, …
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Back To Business As Usual: Russian Analysts See Helsinki Meeting …

RadioFreeEurope/RadioLibertyJul 17, 2018
[Nikolai] Patrushev of the Security Council wasn’t there. … [John] Bolton, and senior adviser to the national-security adviser on Russia affairs, …
Bolton to Stop in Israel Ahead of Meeting with Russians | The Jewish Press – JewishPress.com | David Israel | 4 Elul 5778 – August 15, 2018

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Photo Credit: Gage Skidmore via Flickr

White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders said on Tuesday that National Security Adviser John Bolton would meet with representatives of Israel and Ukraine, before his meeting in Geneva with his Russian counterpart, Russia’s Security Council Secretary Nikolai Patrushev, in Geneva next week.

Bolton will visit Israel as the first leg of his trip, according to Sanders.

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Bolton, who only a year ago called the Russian interference in the 2016 US elections “a true act of war,” has undergone a significant role reversal since taking his new office, and is carrying out the President’s policy vis-à-vis Russia.

Bolton’s visit to Israel, on the other hand, his first since taking office, poses no such conflicts and ambiguities for the former US envoy to the UN. Bolton is pro-Israel, lock, stock and barrel. Habayit Hayehudi chairman Naftali Bennett spoke for everyone in the Netanyahu government when he called Bolton a “stalwart friend of Israel.”

Patrushev and Bolton will undoubtedly discuss the Russian and American presence in Syria, with all its ramifications, including Israel’s and the Trump White House’s views on the continued Iranian presence in post-civil war Syria.

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Bolton To Meet Russian Official In Geneva Next Week

mikenova shared this story from Radio Free Europe / Radio Liberty.

The Kremlin says preparations are under way for a meeting next week between a Russian official and White House national-security adviser John Bolton.

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters on August 15 that “contacts are indeed planned and being prepared” for a meeting in Geneva between Bolton and a Russian envoy. He did not elaborate.

Peskov’s comment comes a day after the White House said Bolton would meet with “his Russian counterpart” in Geneva in order to follow up on the July summit between U.S. President Donald Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin. The White House said the two would discuss a “range of important national security issues.”

Although the White House did not name the Russian official, Bolton’s counterpart is widely considered to be Nikolai Patrushev, the secretary of Putin’s Security Council.

The Security Council of Russia is a consultative body for Putin’s policies on national security affairs.

After Russia’s illegal annexation of Ukraine’s Crimean Peninsula, Patrushev was placed on the European Union’s sanctions list. The United States imposed sanctions on Patrushev in April 2018.

Following their July 16 summit in Helsinki, Trump and Putin said they had taken the “first steps” toward mending badly strained ties between the United States and Russia.

However, critics of Trump described the summit as playing directly into Putin’s hands.

A new round of U.S. sanctions targeting Russia was announced on August 8, prompting an angry reaction from Moscow and a threat to retaliate.

Relations between Washington and Moscow have been badly frayed by tensions over issues the annexation of Crimea, Russia’s role in the wars in eastern Ukraine and Syria, and Russia’s alleged public-opinion-manipulation campaign in the 2016 U.S. presidential election.

With reporting by Reuters and TASS
Tourists snap up ′zero euro′ bills with Karl Marx′s image | Lifestyle | DW

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More than 100,000 ‘zero euro’ bills printed with the image of capitalism critic Karl Marx have been sold since the souvenir was introduced in commemoration of the German philosopher’s 200th birthday, says Hans-Albert Becker of the Trier tourism bureau, in western Germany.

It’s become a brisk business for the city, where Marx was born on May 5, 1818: the popular souvenirs cost 3 (real) euros ($3.41) apiece.

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26:01 mins.

Revolutionary and Hip as Ever: Karl Marx!

Prized possessions

And tourists from all over the world have been snapping them up, in Trier and online, Becker told Germany’s dpa press agency, adding that the bill has surprisingly become a major seller. “We never expected the bills to be such a success.”

The purple bank note looks and feels real: it has just about the right size, is printed on security paper, and has all the right security features, including a water mark, copper stripes, hologram, UV fluorescent ink and an individual serial number. Asians seem to be particularly taken by the fake bill, says Becker. “25,000 to 30,000 alone must have gone to China,” he said.

  • Street Art shows a picture of Karl Marx collecting empty bottles from a garbage can while wearing a shirt that reads, 'I told you how to change the world' (picture-alliance/NurPhoto/A. Widak)

    HOW KARL MARX BECAME A POP ICON

    Marx as prophet of the bottle collectors

    Today, Karl Marx serves as something of a prophetic symbol, warning about the class divide between rich and poor. In this street art piece in Berlin, the philosopher is dressed as a bottle collector, bag in hand, with a T-shirt that reads: “I told you how to change the world.” Of course, it’s never as easy as it’s made out to be.

  • People walk in front of portrait paintings of Marx, Engels, Lenin and Stalin (picture-alliance/akg-images)

    HOW KARL MARX BECAME A POP ICON

    Spiritual heirs

    A number of infamous political heirs to Marx’s communist ideas have included the likes of Joseph Stalin, who manipulated these theories to justify a reign of terror against his perceived enemies. Marx is seen here displayed in April 1969 at the ninth annual Party meeting for China’s Communist Party, alongside his spiritual collaborators and heirs Engels, Lenin and Stalin.

  • A poster features Mao with the profiles of Marx, Engels, Lenin and Stalin in the background (picture-alliance/akg-images)

    HOW KARL MARX BECAME A POP ICON

    Justifying mass murder

    That’s how it works with theories: they can be re-interpreted and misused. Marx would not have been enthusiastic about being appropriated by a dictator and mass murderer like Mao Tse Tung. Marx’s ideas may have been revolutionary, but he preferred, if possible, a moderate approach to their implementation.

  • A figure made out of Paper maché in the Philippines shows Marx beside Lenin und Tse-tung. (picture-alliance/Zumapress)

    HOW KARL MARX BECAME A POP ICON

    In hostile company

    While the ongoing homage to the philosopher in his hometown of Trier is understandable, Marx himself might question why some other more egregious world figures are constantly celebrated next to him. Here a Marx figure is pictured alongside those of Vladimir Lenin and Mao Tse Tung during Labour Day on May 1, 2017 in the Philippine capital Manila as protesters demanded workers rights.

  • An Indian billboard poster features Marx alongside Lenin and Stalin (picture-alliance/Godong)

    HOW KARL MARX BECAME A POP ICON

    Lending his name to an Indian party

    Marx has been similarly exploited in the Indian state of Kerala on the tropical Malabar coast (Arabian Sea), where he was once again staged alongside Lenin and the tyrant Stalin. Incidentally, when India’s Communists split in 1964, CPI (M) emerged from the CPI Communist Party: the “M” stands for Marxist.

  • A billboard in Sri Lanka features Marx, Lenin and Engels in yellow paint on a red background (picture-alliance/AP Photo/G. Amarasinghe)

    HOW KARL MARX BECAME A POP ICON

    A Communist leader

    Although communism has historically been compromised and often associated with oppression, Marx’s idea of a classless society has since remained a universal guiding political principle around the world. In this image, Lenin, Marx and Engels adorn a billboard at a demonstration on Labor Day in Sri Lanka in 2012.

  • The public lines up outside the Karl Marx Theater in Havana (picture-alliance/dpa)

    HOW KARL MARX BECAME A POP ICON

    Theater in Havana

    After the Cuban Revolution, the largest theater in the country with 8,000 seats was renamed after Karl Marx in 1959. Cuba’s music stars perform here, and in 2017 the political leadership celebrated the 100th anniversary of the October socialist revolution.

  • Karl Marx as Santa Claus is painted onto a building facade in São Paulo (picture-alliance/ZUMA/C. Faga)

    HOW KARL MARX BECAME A POP ICON

    Opposing christmas consumerism

    He may share Marx’ beard, but Santa Claus is a symbol of the commercialization of Christmas — and thus of capitalism. The urban myth that Santa was invented by a certain large US soda manufacturer is played on here by a street artist in São Paulo, who has turned Marx himself into a red giver of a different kind of gift, namely a proletarian revolution.

  • A wax figure of Marx seated a table with books (picture-alliance/ROPI/G. Dianhua)

    HOW KARL MARX BECAME A POP ICON

    Wax figure

    The Beijing branch of the Madame Tussauds’ waxworks depicts the philosopher in a much more appropriate manner: as a thinker with alert eyes, ready to argue his positions. With glasses and outstretched tongue, it could just as well be Albert Einstein.

  • 500 red figures in the shape of Karl Marx (picture-alliance/dpa/O. Dietze)

    HOW KARL MARX BECAME A POP ICON

    Conceptual art object

    There is one place in the world where no concept is too strange to honor the philosopher. In his hometown of Trier, the marketing of their famous son is nonstop. In 2013, a conceptual artist installed 500 fairly representative Marx figures in front of the Porta Nigra, the city’s Roman landmark. More unusual homages are in the works for this year’s 200th birthday celebration …

  • An image of Karl Marx at a crossing light (picture-alliance/dpa/H. Tittel)

    HOW KARL MARX BECAME A POP ICON

    Also available in green, or go

    … including the newly introduced pedestrian light figures who take on the thinker’s uniform and beard. He’s not only seen in red, as above, but also in green. But that is not enough. Trier really wants to cash in on the anti-capitalist, for example, with …

  • Karl Marx as Rubber Ducky, with a copy of 'Das Kapital' in hand (Reuters/W. Rattay)

    HOW KARL MARX BECAME A POP ICON

    Bathe with Marx

    … rubber duckies, replete with Marx’s masterpiece, “Das Kapital,” in their hands. Other souvenirs include mouse pads with the phrase “Karl has sent you a friend request. The question remains: have the people of Trier always been so excited about their hometown hero or do they still feel insulted that he turned his back on them so soon after leaving school?

    Author: Torsten Landsberg (ct)

Trier in a Marx frenzy

This year, it’s all about Karl Marx, the famous author of Das Capital, also known as Capital, Critique of Political Economy, in his hometown Trier. Souvenirs with the image of a bearded Marx beckon at every corner, from t-shirts and posters to mugs, pens, books, posters and cookie cutters. Four museums have dedicated exhibitions to the city’s famous son.

  • Deutschland Trier Karl-Marx-Haus (Imago/R. Oberhäuser)

    OLD, OLDER, ANTIQUE: 10 REASONS TO VISIT TRIER

    Karl-Marx-House

    A great thinker was born in a small house (center): the philosopher and economist Karl Marx (1818-1883). His birthplace is now a museum. Chinese travel groups in particular like to visit birthplace of the co-author of the “Communist Manifesto”.

  • Deutschland Trier - Deutschlands älteste Stadt (picture alliance/dpa/U. Bernhart)

    OLD, OLDER, ANTIQUE: 10 REASONS TO VISIT TRIER

    Porta Nigra

    The landmark of Trier, however, is the Porta Nigra, the Roman city gate which dates from 170 and was not given the name “Black Gate” until the Middle Ages, when the sandstone had darkened. The Porta Nigra is one of many monumental buildings left behind by the Romans in Trier.

  • Deutschland Architektur Brücke Römerbrücke in Trier (imago/ARCO IMAGES)

    OLD, OLDER, ANTIQUE: 10 REASONS TO VISIT TRIER

    Roman Bridge

    The Romans founded “Augusta Treverorum” in 16 BC, making Tier the oldest city in Germany. The bridge over the Moselle was one of the first structures to be built by them. Even today its size and stability withstand modern traffic use.

  • Trier Kaiserthermen Ruine des Caldariums (picture-alliance/akg)

    OLD, OLDER, ANTIQUE: 10 REASONS TO VISIT TRIER

    Imperial Baths

    Trier developed into the largest ancient city north of the Alps. Subsequently one of the largest thermal baths in the Roman Empire was built here. Inside there was a cold and a hot bath room, steam baths, massage rooms and underground heating passages. The high-tech world of antiquity!

  • Trierer Goldschatz (picture-alliance/dpa/T. Frey)

    OLD, OLDER, ANTIQUE: 10 REASONS TO VISIT TRIER

    A treasure of gold coins

    A hobby archaeologist in 1993 made a sensational discovery in Trier: 2516 gold coins depicting 40 Roman emperors and their relatives. It is the largest Roman gold treasure in the world. It can be seen in the Rheinisches Landesmuseum Trier. The current value of the treasure is estimated at about 3 million euros, though the honest finder received only 10,000 euros.

  • Amphitheater in Trier Römerfest Brot und Spiele Gladiatorenkampf Deutschland (picture-alliance/dpa)

    OLD, OLDER, ANTIQUE: 10 REASONS TO VISIT TRIER

    Amphitheater

    In ancient times only the really rich metropolises could afford an amphitheater and Trier was one of them. Up to 20,000 people followed the bloody gladiatorial games here. No other German city can boast so many Roman buildings, a clear case for UNESCO! Since 1986 Trier has been listed as part of the world cultural heritage of mankind.

  • Rheinland-Pfalz Trier Dom Liebfrauenkirche (picture-alliance/Bildagentur Huber)

    OLD, OLDER, ANTIQUE: 10 REASONS TO VISIT TRIER

    St. Peter’s Cathedral

    As early as 313 Trier became a bishop’s seat and it is here that the construction of a mighty church complex began. The foundations of St. Peter’s Cathedral, one of the oldest and most magnificent in Germany, was built in the year 1000.

  • Flash-Galerie Hauptmarkt in Trier (DW)

    OLD, OLDER, ANTIQUE: 10 REASONS TO VISIT TRIER

    Market place

    In 958 Trier was granted market rights. At the main market, the center of the medieval town is where you’ll find the oldest pharmacy in Germany: the Löwenapotheke is mentioned in a deed of donation of 1214.

  • Frankenturm von außen im Stadtbild Trier (Frederike Müller)

    OLD, OLDER, ANTIQUE: 10 REASONS TO VISIT TRIER

    Frankenturm

    The Frankenturm is named after one of its inhabitants, the noble Franco von Senheim. Since the 11th century, the defiant walls served to defend the city. And the material comes – how could it be otherwise – from Roman buildings. In Trier there were eight such fortified residential towers, only three of which remain to this day.

  • Trier Kurfürstliches Palais Palastgarten (picture-alliance/Udo Bernhart)

    OLD, OLDER, ANTIQUE: 10 REASONS TO VISIT TRIER

    Electoral Palace

    The Renaissance and the Rococo period also left their mark on Trier: in the 17th and 18th centuries, the archbishops and electors of Trier resided in this festive palace. In the background: the huge Constantine basilica, another greeting from the Romans to their descendants!

    Author: Kerstin Schmidt

Kim Philby: The Secret Story Behind the Soviet Union’s Most Successful Mole in the UK – YouTube

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Kim Philby: The Secret Story Behind the Soviet Union’s Most Successful Mole in the UK

Rapprochement With Russia Is Now a Core Policy Objective for Germany

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As Donald Trump shakes up the global order, German Chancellor Angela Merkel is being pushed closer toward a more predictable partner in Moscow.

When President Vladimir Putin hosted Merkel in the Black Sea resort of Sochi on Friday, both leaders did their best to keep tensions in the background compared with a year ago, when they clashed over Ukraine and Russian election meddling. Now, they’re aligned in trying to shield businesses from U.S. sanctions, defend the Iran nuclear accord ditched by Trump and rebuffing American objections to a Russian gas pipeline to Germany.

Even so, neither leader unveiled any immediate policy breakthrough.

“If you want to solve problems, you have to talk to each other,” Merkel said alongside Putin at a news conference midway through the talks. “There also are points where we agree, which is good, considering all the issues on which we don’t agree.”

How EU Leaders Hardened Their Stance Against Trump

“Even in the most difficult times, we never lost contact with each other,” Putin said. “Life goes on, develops, new opportunities arise.”

Rapprochement with Russia is now a core policy objective in Berlin, according to a senior German official with knowledge of the chancellery’s strategy. The shift in sentiment, underscoring why Russia would have meddled in the 2016 election campaign to favor the Republican wild card, is a consequence of the actions of a U.S. president who has strained the long-standing alliance with Europe.

While Merkel and Putin aren’t about to become best of friends, they’re seasoned survivors of geopolitical turmoil who share a contentious but well-honed relationship. Germany, for example, doesn’t intend to ease European Union sanctions on Russia over its incursions into Ukraine. The Kremlin is still relishing the entente, regarding it as an opening to strengthen its influence with Germany and Europe more broadly.

“Putin likes the irritation that Trump has created with Europe,” said Josef Janning, head of the Berlin office of the European Council on Foreign Relations. “In his eyes, I think, the development is quite positive.” The Russian leader tried to intimidate Merkel in the past, said Janning, “but she’s still around — like he is.”

Pipeline Diplomacy

For Putin, it’s an opportunity to chip away at his diplomatic isolation from Europe since Russia was dropped from the Group of Eight in 2014. For Merkel, the stakes are as much about projecting European values in a globalized age as about protecting German economic interests in Iran and Russia.

That includes Nord Stream 2, which Putin and Merkel have a joint interest in completing over U.S. objections. The Trump administration has threatened sanctions on companies working on the pipeline because more Russian gas would bypass Ukraine on its way to Germany.

Putin rebuffed the threat of U.S. sanctions over Nord Stream 2, saying Trump is “promoting the interests of his business’ to sell American liquefied natural gas to Europe. Merkel said that while she wants to shield the pipeline project from politics, Ukraine needs Russian “guarantees” that it’ll remain a gas transit country.

U.S. Warns Sanctions Possible If Nord Stream 2 Pipe Proceeds

On the global stage, Trump’s exit from the Iran deal is an opportunity for Russia to show it’s an indispensable partner, according to a government official familiar with Putin’s thinking. Iran will be on the agenda for both Merkel and French President Emmanuel Macron, who’s appearing with Putin at the St. Petersburg Economic Forum next week.

“When opinions coincide, it already means that countries become a little bit closer at least,” Yuri Ushakov, a Kremlin foreign policy aide, told reporters in Moscow before the meeting. The Sochi meeting between Putin and Merkel will be a “very important contact,” he said.

Polls suggest Germans trust Russia more than the U.S. under Trump. While 14 percent of respondents view the U.S. as a reliable partner, 36 percent said the same of Russia, according to a poll for ZDF television published Friday.

Photographer: Yuri Kadobnov/AFP/Getty Images

Double Agent

It’s the latest turn in a long-running relationship between the two leaders marked by Putin’s taunts and Merkel’s cold shoulder for his seizure of Crimea and backing of a pro-Russian separatist rebellion in eastern Ukraine. Most recently, Germany joined in the mass expulsions of Russian diplomats in response to the nerve-agent poisoning of a former double agent in England.

Yet for all the tension, they’re known quantities to each other and share a historic bond. Merkel, a Russophile and Russian speaker who grew up in communist East Germany, and Putin, a former KGB agent who served in the eastern German city of Dresden, are familiar with each other’s background like perhaps no other major world leaders. And throughout the turmoil, they have kept lines of communication open. They spoke by phone as recently as Friday.

— With assistance by Arne Delfs

RUSSIA: GERHARD SCHROEDER VISIT LATEST – YouTube

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RUSSIA: GERHARD SCHROEDER VISIT LATEST

Mueller Is Closing in on Roger Stone

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Roger Stone, former adviser to Donald Trump’s presidential campaign, listens during a Bloomberg Television interview in New York, U.S., on Friday, May 12, 2017.

By Christopher Goodney/Bloomberg/Getty Images.

As Robert Mueller’s investigation into Russian interference churns on, the list of individuals the special counsel hasn’t interviewed is arguably as interesting as those he has. And given his communications with WikiLeaks and Russian hacker Guccifer 2.0, professional ratfucker and longtime Donald Trumpconfidant Roger Stone ranks near the top. Stone has yet to be called in for questioning himself, but reports suggest Mueller has taken an interest in Stone, probing said WikiLeaks links, as well as his relationship with Rick Gates, the former deputy chairman of the Trump campaign who’s cooperating with the government. And at the end of last week, Mueller’s escalating probe engulfed two more known Stone associates: Randy Credico, a comedian and radio-show host, and “Manhattan Madam” Kristin Davis, a former employee and close friend of Stone’s, adding to a growing list of people in the Republican operative’s orbit to come under the microscope of the F.B.I.

The role of Credico in the Russian melodrama that has captivated Capitol Hill for the past two years is a curious one. Stone has claimed that Credico gave him information from WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, who appeared on the latter’s radio show, about plans to release hacked e-mails from the Hillary Clinton campaign and the Democratic National Committee. Of course, true to form, Stone’s account has shifted over time. In August 2016, Stone said, “I actually have communicated with Assange.” Months later, Stone walked back this assertion, claiming that a “journalist”—whom he later identified as Credico—acted as an “intermediary” between him and the WikiLeaks founder. Then, in September 2017, Stone’s lawyer told the Senate Intelligence Committee, “Mr. Stone concedes that describing Credico as a go-between or intermediary is a bit of salesmanship.” Credico, meanwhile, has maintained that he did not act as an information broker between the two, but simply directed Stone to Assange’s public statements. (Stone has denied any wrongdoing.)

Regardless, Credico’s involvement has long piqued Mueller’s interest. After Credico rejected a request for a voluntary interview, the special counsel subpoenaed the radio-show host for a grand jury interview on September 7, according to his lawyer, Martin Stolar. Stolar told CNN that it is unclear what Mueller seeks from Credico, but speculated, “They probably want to talk to him about Roger Stone and Julian Assange.” Citing two sources familiar with the matter, Mother Jones reported Monday that investigators are also reviewing a batch of e-mails Stone sent Credico after the latter disputed his claims about the contacts with WikiLeaks—specifically, the special counsel is reportedly interested in the extent to which Credico interpreted them as threats. “I am so ready. Let’s get it on. Prepare to die cock sucker,” Stone reportedly wrote to Credico in an e-mail dated April 9.

In a series of text messages to M.J., Stone said that his e-mails were “laced with a consistent theme that [Credico] should stop lying and tell the truth,” and that “If he is compelled to testify I would urge Mr. Credico to simply tell the truth. Any deviation from these facts as stated would be perjury which I could easily prove.” Stone’s posturing, while not out of character, could be a tell: if Credico truly did not act as a conduit, his testimony could prove detrimental to Stone, raising further questions about what role Stone played in Russia’s effort to derail Clinton’s candidacy. Those questions are particularly apt given the questionable contacts Stone made during the campaign: in May 2016, he met with a Russian national, Henry Greenberg—who has also gone by the name Henry Oknyansky—in Florida on the pretense that he would be provided “damaging information” on Clinton for $2 million. (Stone has since claimed that the meeting was an F.B.I. sting operation, and said he omitted it from his Congressional testimony because he forgot about it.) In his indictment of a dozen Russian operatives last month, Mueller specifically mentions “a person who was in regular contact with senior members of the presidential campaign of Donald J. Trump,” who exchanged messages with Russian hacker “Guccifer 2.0”—Stone himself has admitted that he is “probably” the person to whom the document refers.

After testifying before Mueller’s grand jury, Davis said she does believe that Mueller is closing in on Stone, who ran her ill-fated 2010 New York gubernatorial bid. “I think they’re concerned with all of the people in the 2016 campaign, all of the high-profile names that we’ve seen come across and all of the people that have worked for Roger,” she said during an interview with CNN on Monday night. As to what specifically she thinks investigators are probing, Davis highlighted Stone’s highly scrutinized Podesta tweet, which seemed to foretell WikiLeaks’s release of the Clinton campaign chairman’s hacked e-mails. “I think there’s the general concern for some things that he seemed to predict,” she told host Chris Cuomo. When and if Mueller will come calling for Stone remains a mystery. But Credico and Davis are two of more than a half dozen Stone associates who have or will face off with the special counsel, according to M.J. And the special counsel appears intent on speaking with those in Stone’s orbit—on Friday, a D.C. district judge held former Stone aide Andrew Miller in contempt for his refusal to testify.

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Beethoven Silence – YouTube

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