The Imperial Core


EU: EU-Mercosur deal slowly vanishing.MP Merkelism is collapsing in Europe. What will succeed it? Blowback from the economic war on Russia has seen voters turn away from Merkelism and embrace far-right nationalist Eurosceptics.CD European recyclers have raised concerns over plans to hand out free CO2 allowances to steelmakers, saying the methodology considered by Brussels puts recycled steel scrap at a disadvantage compared to primary steel made from iron ore, which is more polluting.E The European Union has set a goal to increase the production and utilisation of renewable hydrogen in the fertiliser industry.E EU’s critical minerals act welcome but falling short, say green groups and industry.E

Majority in EU expect living standards to fall in 2024.RT Europe’s wealthiest countries have high child poverty rates, says UNICEF report.EN Weird!

Elections Won’t Fix What Ails the West.NC


Canada: Ottawa extends, doubles news media bailout.CD Canada May Soon Give a $15.3B ‘Carbon Bomb’ Subsidy to Big Oil, Experts Say.DS

Denmark: Denmark votes to ban religious texts burning in public spaces.E

France: Construction of the world’s largest fusion experiment machine, the International Thermonuclear Experimental Reactor (ITER) Tokamak, is ongoing in the department of Bouches-du-Rhone in southern France, despite technical setbacks related to key tokamak components.CGTN The French parliament on Thursday voted down a proposal calling for the termination of the Franco-Algerian agreement, which makes it easier for Algerian nationals to immigrate to France.AN

Germany: Intel stands by record semiconductor investment despite German budget problems.E Deutsche Ban strike on Thursday paralyzed railway traffic for 24 hours, as workers demand a 35 hour work week with no reduction in pay, among other benefits.DW Olaf Scholz: The most unpopular German chancellor ever.DW I can think of a guy lower on the popularity ratings. …actually, given the resurgence of apologia for genocide and the Waffen SS, perhaps not.

Greece: SYRIZA is falling apart after 9 more MPs leave the left-wing party.MR

Italy: ‘Forgotten heroes’: Hundreds of Italian doctors and nurses strike over working conditions.EN Doctors in Italy strike against proposed pension cuts.MR Italy tells China it will terminate belt and road agreement, eliminating G7 participation.SCMP

Japan: Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida will step down as chief of his faction in the ruling Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) amid a growing slush funds scandal.PD

New Zealand: Thousands of protesters rallied against the New Zealand government’s indigenous policies Tuesday as the parliament convened for the first time since October elections. Demonstrations in the capital, Wellington, and in about a dozen other New Zealand cities and towns were organized by the Maori Party, which advocates for the rights of Indigenous New Zealanders.PW

Sweden: U.S., Sweden sign defense cooperation agreement.CGTN

United Kingdom: Over 90% of respondents urge Britain to return looted artifacts.CGTN Britain announced plans to slash the number of migrants arriving by legal routes on Monday, raising the minimum salary they must earn in a skilled job by a third.E Education funding crisis devastating UK teaching profession.WSWS UK and Rwanda sign new version of the asylum seekers policy.MP Sellafield, regarded as the most hazardous nuclear site in Europe, has developed a leak in a massive radioactive waste silo that has prompted concerns about the facility’s safety measures, as well as potential dangers to the public and the environment.RT UK construction activity contracts for third month in a row.FT

United States: A next-generation geothermal plant backed by Google has started sending carbon-free electricity to the grid in Nevada, where the tech company operates some of its massive data centers.PW Will Energy From Manure Help or Harm Water Quality in Michigan?CoB New Mexico Looks to Address Increasing Aridity With Brackish and Produced Water. Experts Are ‘Skeptical’ICN Encore of “tripledemic” feared in California.MP Massachusetts Just Took a Big Step Away from Natural Gas. Which States Might Follow?ICN ‘Forever chemicals’ found in freshwater fish, yet most states don’t warn residents .IM

Extremism in the ranks remains a troubling trend for the US military, as evidenced by the fact that 78 service members were suspected of being advocates for the overthrow of their own government, an annual Pentagon report has revealed.RT

From launching a historic strike at the Big Three automakers to calling for a cease-fire in the war on Gaza, the UAW has had a big year. And 2024 might be even bigger: the union is pushing to organize 150,000 workers at nonunion automakers across the US.J Washington Post journalists gear up for 24-hour strike amid prolonged contract negotiations.PD Inspired by Strike Wins, 1,000 Volkswagen Workers Sign Union Cards.LN Stellantis announces 3,680 layoffs at Detroit and Toledo Jeep plants, as automakers escalate job cuts under new UAW contracts.WSWS 99% of Americans will be financially worse-off than pre-pandemic by mid-2024.CGTN

The Semi-Periphery


Trade settlements in national currencies between Russia and Vietnam have skyrocketed this year, Olga Basha, VTB’s head of international settlements. Basha noted that settlements conducted in ruble and dong between the two countries have quadrupled.RT

China, Singapore to let each other’s tourists pay with digital yuan as Beijing seeks to globalise its e-CNY currency.SCMP

Armenia, Azerbaijan agree to take steps towards normalisation.E


Albania: Albanian interior minister tells opposition MPs to stop starting fires in parliament or face prosecution.BNE

Argentina: Argentina is not for sale: Unions respond to privatization, regional solidarity is rising.MR Japan reopens door to Argentine poultry products.MP

Azerbaijan: On December 6 a top U.S. diplomat made a visit to Azerbaijan against a backdrop of deteriorating relations between the two countries. The visit was received positively by Azerbaijani officials and media, but there is no sign that the hunt for “U.S. spies” in the country is about to let up.EN

Belarus: China is willing to continue to strengthen strategic coordination with Belarus, promote pragmatic cooperation and continue to deepen China-Belarus relations, Chinese President Xi Jinping said during a meeting with Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko.CGTN

Brazil: ‘The time is now’: Inside Brazil’s fight to decriminalize abortion.OD

Bulgaria: Lukoil said on December 5 it will reassess its presence in Bulgaria and could sell its business in the country due to “significant change in conditions” for operating on its territory.BNE

China: China ‘disappointed’ at Moody’s downgrade of sovereign bonds outlook to negative.SCMP China’s services activity accelerates to 3-month high in November on boost from new orders.SCMP China’s foreign trade grows for a second month in November.CGTN

China’s education reforms were meant to lower costs. So why is schooling more expensive?SCMP China’s 2030 carbon reduction goal to spare food industry from reforms as security takes priority.SCMP China bans new steel plants in drive to ‘defend the blue sky’ and cut atmospheric pollution.SCMP

Construction of China’s first national offshore wind power research and test base started in Fuqing City, east China’s Fujian Province on Friday.CGTN China opens world’s tallest unmanned veggie farm as more urban agriculture advancements take root.SCMP

Taiwan returns to monthly export growth as erratic year comes to a close.SCMP

Czechia: Czech MPs approve law to tackle drug shortages, pharma industry unconvinced.E

Malta: The majority of Maltese are unhappy with how things are going in the country, fear a decline in their standard of living, and see democracy and the rule of law as key matters that need addressing.E

Poland: New registered HIV infections in Poland reach record high.E Poland will insist that the EU restore a permit system for Ukrainian truckers crossing its border, Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki said on Monday. Polish truckers have already been blocking crossing points since early November, arguing that they are being undercut by their Ukrainian counterparts.RT Empty cargo trucks crossed the border between Ukraine and Poland on Monday morning in the first step towards a de-escalation of a border blockade that has paralyzed Ukrainian trade.CGTN

Romania: Romania has not imported Ukrainian farm products in the past six months.E

Russia: Russian oil exports yielding more revenue than before Ukraine conflict.RT Russian exports of liquified natural gas (LNG) to European Union hit an all-time high of 1.75 million tons in November.RT Russia’s services PMI posts 52.2 in November as growth cools, but remains comfortably in the black.BNE Russia could become the world’s third biggest producer of liquified natural gas (LNG), according to Gazprom.RT Moscow sees most snowfall in one day since records began.BNE Russian MP proposes ban on opposite sex names for kids.RT Putin announces 2024 presidential bid.RT

Saudi Arabia: How Saudis overcame “reputational damage”.IP

Slovakia: Fico’s government working to gain absolute control of arms industry, says opposition.E

Turkiye: Slowdown in Turkish manufacturing became more entrenched in November, PMI shows.BNE Turkey could work with Greece on nuclear energy and gas, Erdogan says.MEE

The Periphery


200 Years of the Monroe Doctrine. How the United States Went from Pseudo-Isolationism to Aggressive Expansionism.R The Monroe Doctrine Weakens as Latin America Moves Forward: An Interview with Nicaragua’s Foreign Minister.R

China grants tariff-free access to 6 African countries in bid to boost food imports and rebalance trade.SCMP

Widespread floods kill hundreds and displace millions in East Africa.AN

The military leaders of Burkina Faso and Niger said Saturday they would quit the G5 anti-jihadist force in Africa’s Sahel area, the latest blow to the fight against insurgents in one of the world’s most troubled regions.AN Chad and Mauritania are considering measures to end the union after the withdrawal of three founding states.RT Burkina Faso, Mali and Niger look to form a federation.AN

Washington announced on Monday that it is expanding a travel ban policy on Ugandan officials, after their government recently passed an anti-LGBTQ law, as well as a new visa restriction policy for Zimbabwean authorities, citing human rights violations in both African countries.RT

China contributes water-saving technology to protecting the Aral Sea.CGTN Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan drop fresh hints on border deal.EN Afghanistan, Pakistan and climate breakdown.E

The electrification of transport in Latin America is clocking up the kilometres, but unequally.ET Henry Kissinger’s support for brutal regimes still haunts Latin America.PW


Burkina Faso: The Burkinabè government adopted on Wednesday a bill revising the Constitution and henceforth enshrining national languages ​​as official languages ​​in place of French which is relegated to the rank of “working language”.

Comoros: According to the French senate report, between 1995 and 2012, it is estimated that approximately 10,000 Comorans died on the crossing to Mayotte from the Comoros Islands. However, the governor of Anjouan, Anissi Chamsidine, in May 2015 claimed that more than 50,000 had drowned since 1995. Consequently, he calls the 70 kilometers between Mayotte and the rest of the archipelago “the largest marine cemetery in the world.” Visa Balladur is now commonly referred to as “Visa de la mort” (‘death visa’) for inhabitants of the other three islands.RT

Cuba: Former top US diplomat arrested for working for Cuban government.MP

DPRK: Pyongyang has said the fracturing of a military accord with Seoul will likely lead to a “physical clash”.RT

DRC: Could the DRC become the Saudi Arabia of the electric vehicle age?BNE

Egypt: Streets flooded with pro-Sisi signs as people forced to endorse president.MEE

Guinea-Bissau: Guinea-Bissau President Umaro Sissoco Embalo decided to dissolve the opposition-dominated Parliament on Monday, three days after armed clashes that he describes as an “attempted coup d’état”.AN Guinea-Bissau: exchanges of fire after the release of 2 ministers.AN

Kazakhstan: Kazakhstan’s November services PMI shows first contraction in eight months.AN

Kenya: Death toll from floods reaches 136 as waters wipe towns off the map.AN Kenya to send 1,500 workers to Israel amid farm labour shortage.AN

Kuwait: Construction starts on China-contracted housing project in Kuwait.PD

Laos: The Lao government will work with a Chinese company to study the feasibility of a scheme to reduce greenhouse gas emissions due to deforestation.PD The China-Laos Railway has bolstered its transport capacity and efficiency since it was launched two years ago, opening up opportunities for Laos’ economic development, boosting tourism, and improving people’s livelihood in Laos.CGTN

Morocco: Nearly three months after a deadly earthquake struck southern Morocco, residents of one village are trying to cope with the harsh conditions of their new life as winter approaches.AN

Nicaragua: Nicaragua pulls Ambassador from Argentina.MP

Niger: Niger announced Monday that it was ending two European Union (EU) security and defence missions in the country, as it welcomed a Russian delegation to Niamey.AN Russian officials visit Niger to strengthen military ties.AN ECOWAS court rejects Niger’s request to lift coup sanctions.AN

Nigeria: At least 85 people were killed in an alleged military drone strike in Nigeria’s northern Kaduna state over the weekend, according to local authorities.RT

Peru: Peru court orders release of ex-President Fujimori.DW

Somalia: FAO Launches Food Security Project, Severe Flooding.TS

Uzbekistan: Court sentences citizen reporter to eight years in prison.EN

Venezuela: Venezuela Seeks to Slow Down the Humboldt Glacier Melting.TS Venezuelan voters back sovereignty claim over 160,000 sq. km of Guyana.E Venezuelans vote to annex Essequiba Guiana amid poor turnout.MP Guayana Esequiba: Geo-economics of an Occupation.R Maduro to grant oil-drilling licenses in Essequibo.MP Military build-up reported as tension between Venezuela and Guyana escalates.MP

Vietnam: Chinese President Xi Jinping will pay a state visit to Vietnam from December 12 to 13.CGTN

Global Institutions

COP28: John Kerry announced a nuclear fusion engagement plan during the ongoing COP28 UN climate change conference, which includes 35 nations and focuses on supply chain and regulation.CGTN ‘A Sick Joke’: Six Ways of Looking at a COP.NC Cop28 bulletin: IPCC chief defends Al Jaber over science firestorm.CCN Over 320 Organizations Reject the COP28 Presidency’s “Oil and Gas Decarbonization Charter”.CD Record more than 2,000 fossil fuel lobbyists at COP28 talks.E

Today, 117 countries have announced a commitment to triple renewable energy capacity by 2030. Powering up renewables is a tremendous development and one that has outlined as vital in keeping to a 1.5-degree temperature limit. However, the non-binding Industry Transition Accelerator announced in the same speech as the triple renewable energy does not deliver meaningful steps towards reducing emissions and takes attention away from the need to phase out all fossil fuels, oil, coal, and gas.CD

The Second Cold War



West sabotaged Ukraine peace deal with Russia, admit Zelensky official and Germany’s ex leader.GPE


US Senate Republicans block Ukraine, Israel aid bill over border dispute.E Ukraine running out of money again, as deficit hits a monthly record of $4bn in November.BNE Ukraine prepares a Plan B in case international funding dries up.BNE U.S. Is Withholding Aid To Push Ukraine Towards Negotiations With Russia.MoA Ukraine defense minister visits Pentagon amid questions about future of aid.E


Bulgaria’s president vetoes armoured vehicles for Ukraine.BNE



Volkswagen: Audit finds no sign of ‘forced labor’ in Xinjiang plant.CGTN Engineers in China are producing ultra-thin stainless steel sheets that once cost as much as gold to import – breaking a previous reliance on other countries to provide the product.SCMP China sees surge in value of semiconductor-manufacturing equipment orders amid latest US export controls, as chip imports post mild recovery.SCMP Why China’s foresight on EV minerals gives it a big edge over US, as ‘every country needs copper’.SCMP

China lays out contrasting vision for financial system, rejects ‘predatory’ Western outlook.SCMP Against the odds, China’s push to internationalise its currency is making gains.FT


China military official warns of ‘erroneous ideological trends’ spreading in PLA.SCMP Russia’s current relationship with China allows for full-spectrum cooperation in the tech sector, including with regards to its military applications.RT Trilateral Missile Defense System a step towards Asian NATO.MR Chinese warships visit controversial Cambodian naval base for joint exercise.SCMP U.S. military grounds entire fleet of Ospery aircraft after mishap in Japan.PD

‘World first’: Chinese scientists create high-power microwave weapon for small drones.SCMP



University faculty take a stand against anti-Palestinian racism on campuses.PW United Auto Workers calls for ‘complete and permanent’ ceasefire in Gaza.PW Irish peace movement joins global opposition to Israel’s war against Palestine.PW Colombian Leader Calls Israeli Airstrikes on Gaza ‘Nazi Practices’.R

Dutch rights groups take government to court over arms to Israel.MEE Human rights groups to sue UK government over Israel arms exports.OD Protesters blockade UK factories building F-35 warplane parts used by Israel.MEE

Hugs, smiles were enough to take Israeli propaganda down.MR For Netanyahu and his political allies, peace is more dangerous than war.MEE Most US-based Middle East scholars self-censoring speech critical of Israel, survey finds.MEE

“The Cuban president and I agree that a coalition of allied countries must be created to support the Palestinian people and the oppressed on different continents,” Raisi said in a press conference with Diaz-Canel, who is visiting Tehran.TS


Multiple commercial vessels attacked in Red Sea.E


US approves millions in arms sales to Saudi Arabia and UAE.MEE

Various Analyses

The dangerously appealing style of the Far Right: The Forty-Eighth Newsletter (2023).MR

Immanuel Wallerstein developed a compelling analysis of capitalism as a world-system that undercut the triumphalism of the neoliberal age. Wallerstein’s work is full of valuable insights into the forces that are destabilizing global capitalism.J

Since its first publication more than thirty years ago, Eurocentrism has become a classic of radical thought. Written by one of the world’s foremost political economists, this original and provocative essay takes on one of the great “ideological deformations” of our time: Eurocentrism. Rejecting the dominant Eurocentric view of world history, which narrowly and incorrectly posits a progression from the Greek and Roman classical world to Christian feudalism and the European capitalist system, Amin presents a sweeping reinterpretation that emphasizes the crucial historical role played by the Arab Islamic world. Throughout the work, Amin addresses a broad set of concerns, ranging from the ideological nature of scholastic metaphysics to the meanings and shortcomings of contemporary political Islam. The second edition contains a new introduction and concluding chapter, both of which make the Samir Amin’s arguments even more compelling.MR


What are farm animals thinking? - New research is revealing surprising complexity in the minds of goats, pigs, and other livestock.S

Southeast Asia’s water risk on track for 1,000-year high: China-led study.SCMP

How colonial rule radically shifts historical responsibility for climate change.MR

Climate change: 2023 hottest year since records began.DW

Plastic Is Here to Stay. Can It Be Made More Sustainably?NC

Carbon capture’s publicly funded failure.MR Don’t be fooled: CCS is no solution to oil and gas emissions.CCN

The nuclear geopolitics of anthropogenic clouds.MR

More countries to start producing electricity from nuclear power, says IAEA.BNE

Green Colonialism - In Sweden’s Arctic, a battle for the Earth’s climate rages, and a question looms: Are we simply trading out one extractive industry for another?NOEMA


Napoleon’s war economy.TNR

Why real-world economics matters.TNR

Goldilocks and the last mile.TNR

The Number of IPO Listings Has Plunged in the U.S. While Some Investors Are Nursing Losses of 70 to 95 Percent.WSoP

Evidence – And an Explanation – For the Recent Surge in Inflation Inequality.NC

Dipshittery and Cope:

NATO: Russia planned anti-Turkey protests to stall Finland, Sweden Nato bids, says report.MEE


Content Warning - this is usually not good news.

Nepal Registers First Same-Sex Marriage.A

Washington to restrict visas for Ugandans who enforce anti-LGBT+ law.AN Uganda accuses U.S. of pushing ‘LGBT agenda’ using aid after new round of sanctions.AN That image of a Zionist soldier holding a rainbow flag in the bombed-out ruins of Gaza has probably set us back a solid couple years.

I Love My Trans Comrades!