Sky darkens over South America during last total solar eclipse of the decade

Sky darkens over South America during last total solar eclipse of the decade(Source Millions of sky gazers were left in awe Tuesday as the moon blocked out the sun over Chile and Argentina — a celestial event that drew worldwide attention. The eclipse was only visible across the southern Pacific Ocean and South America, but people from around the world tuned in to watch it on NASA TV. The shadow of the moon began to traverse the southern Pacific Ocean around 2 p.m. EDT Tuesday and was clearly visible on weather satellite imagery. The first place on the continent to see the total solar eclipse was La Serena, Chile, and the last place was just south of Buenos Aires, Argentina. However, clouds interfered with viewing the event from near Buenos Aires.

Totality lasted for a little more than 2 minutes for people that strategically placed themselves in this narrow area on Tuesday afternoon. Meanwhile, much of the balance of the continent witnessed a partial solar eclipse.



According to western media’s own reports, the US Treasury Department’s undersecretary for terrorism and financial intelligence, Sigal Mandelker, sent a letter on May 7 warning that Instex, the European SPV to sustain trade with Tehran, and anyone associated with it could be barred from the US financial system if it goes into effect.

Certainly, neither Russia nor Iran (or China) want to see the same kind of treatment meted out to them in any possible way; hence, its decision to potentially confront, initially in a diplomatic way, the US over Iran. In this behalf, Russian Foreign Ministry reacted very strongly to the fresh sanctions that the US imposed on Iran following Iran’s downing of a super expensive US drone over Iranian air-space. It said in a statement that “This [new sanctions] is just the latest example of the continued US propensity to dictate its will to sovereign states. Imagining itself to be the master of the fate of the world, it adopts increasingly aggressive policies and is quick to “punish” those who refuse to submit to American dictates. Russia stands in full solidarity with the friendly people of Iran and its government. The US government should consider where such a reckless course of action might lead. Not only could it destabilise the Middle East, it threatens to undermine the entire system of international security.”

Russia’s particular position on Iran and how and why the US is trying to destabilise it is quite consistent with the vision agreed upon at the recent SCO summit in Bishkek where the SCO members made it clear that Iran cannot be allowed to be attacked and/or a regime change cannot be contemplated. Why Iran is important for Russia (and China) is the role it is supposed to play in the New Silk Roads and Eurasian economic connectivity programs that China and Russia are developing for quite some time now. If Iran is massively destabilised through a war, it will have direct impact on the economic connectivity plans or the neo geo-spatial politics emerging from Asia and signalling its potential of global domination.

Conversely speaking, the very reason why the US wants to hurt and “obliterate” Iran is not just Iran’s possession of ballistic missiles (although it might be the main concern of Saudi Arabia and Israel, it doesn’t directly hurt the US) or its influence in the Middle East, the main underlying reason for the US is Iran’s potential to help materialise the great potential of the Eurasian heartland and revamp the ancient silk routes to economic glory of Eurasia. This is something that directly affects the US’ own global position; hence, Russian (along with the Chinese) commitment to confront the US over Iran in a bid to protect a country that holds absolute vital importance for their route to a multipolar order, a goal that cannot be achieved unless the US unilateralism can be thwarted permanently.

Putin says liberalism ‘eating itself’

Putin says liberalism ‘eating itself’ (Source Associated Press) The Russian leader added that while “liberal ideas remain attractive as a whole,” election results show that people want change. Putin hailed his meeting with Trump on the sidelines of the G-20 summit as “business-like and pragmatic.” “We addressed almost the entire list of issues of mutual concern,” he said. “Of course, we talked about the situation in various parts of the world. Overall, these consultations were useful.” Putin said he and Trump agreed that the nations’ top diplomats should continue discussions on a possible extension of the New Start nuclear arms reduction treaty that expires in 2021. They also talked about the need to encourage the development of bilateral economic ties, Putin said.

He also responded to criticism from singer Elton John, who accused Putin of duplicity after he offered a critical view of the Western emphasis on LGBT rights. “I deeply respect him, he is a musical genius and we all love his performance, but I believe he’s mistaken,” Putin said. John and the filmmakers of his biopic “Rocketman” have sharply criticized a Russian distributor’s decision to censor scenes from the new movie. Putin argued that Russia’s ban on “propaganda” of LGBT culture among children is aimed at protecting them from aggressive proselytizing by the LGBT community. “Let a person grow up first before making a choice,” Putin said. “Let the children in peace.” He said that “our attitude to the LGBT community is absolutely calm and unbiased,” but added that “this part of community aggressively enforces its point of view on others.”