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Deep State

News Media-Military-Industrial Complex Recommended Books Recommended Links National Security State / Surveillance State Big Uncle is Watching You  US and British media are servants of security apparatus
 Nation under attack meme Fake News scare and US NeoMcCartyism Trump vs. Deep State Anti Trump Hysteria Anti-Russian hysteria in connection emailgate and DNC leak Neoconservatism New American Militarism
Jingoism of the US neoliberal elite American Exceptionalism Corporatism Neo-fascism Inverted Totalitarism Bureaucracies Bureaucracy as a Political Coalition
Neoliberalism as a New Form of Corporatism  The Pareto Law Amorality of neoliberal elite Casino Capitalism Ayn Rand and Objectivism Cult Pluralism as a myth What's the Matter with Kansas
Neoliberal Brainwashing: Journalism in the Service of the Powerful Few The Guardian Slips Beyond the Reach of Embarrassment The importance of controlling the narrative  Patterns of Propaganda Corruption of Regulators Two Party System as polyarchy Audacioues Oligarchy and Loss of Trust
Hillary "Warmonger" Clinton - unsuccessful deep state candidate for presidency US Presidential Elections of 2016 as a referendum on neoliberal globalization Swiftboating Trump: Khan gambit against Trump at the Democratic Convention Obama: a yet another Neocon Neocon foreign policy is a disaster for the USA Robert Kagan Paul Wolfowitz
Wrecking Crew: Notes on Republican Economic Policy Libertarian Philosophy In Goldman Sachs we trust: classic example of regulatory capture by financial system hackers Groupthink Skeptic Quotations Humor Etc

Introduction


DEEP STATE n. A hard-to-perceive level of government or super-control that exists regardless of elections and that may thwart popular movements or radical change. Some have said that Egypt is being manipulated by its deep state.

A Wordnado of Words in 2013 - NYTimes.com , Dec 21, 2013

"For some time I have been disturbed by the way the CIA has been diverted from its original assignment. It has become an operational and at times a policy-making arm of the government.... I never had any thought that when I set up the CIA that it would be injected into peacetime cloak and dagger operations."

President Harry Truman

"For we are opposed around the world by a monolithic and ruthless conspiracy that relies primarily on covert means for expanding its sphere of influence - on infiltration instead of invasion, on subversion instead of elections, on intimidation instead of free choice, on guerrillas by night instead of armies by day.

It is a system which has conscripted vast human and material resources into the building of a tightly knit, highly efficient machine that combines military, diplomatic, intelligence, economic, scientific and political operations. Its preparations are concealed, not published. Its mistakes are buried not headlined. Its dissenters are silenced, not praised. No expenditure is questioned, no rumor is printed, no secret is revealed."

President John_F._Kennedy, speech on April 27, 1961

In a way, the concept of  Corporatism and the concept of  "deep state' are very close, almost synonyms. Corporatism presuppose the merger of government and corporations. It can be done openly as was the case in Mussolini Italy, or via back door including the "revolving door" mechanism as it was done in the USA. In the latter case part of power of 'surface state" is preserved. 

The concept of the  deep state is related to the answer the another fundamental question: Can democracy exists in a state with powerful intelligence agencies like NSA, CIA, FBI (which plays the role of counterintelligence agency in the USA; look at Russiagate) and the State Department (which has functions,  which duplicate those of CIA).  Thus  the concept of the "deep state" can be viewed as a reformulation of the iron law of oligarchy in state level, explaining the role of intelligence agencies as an immanent part of the ruling elite.  For example, the neoliberals elite which rules the USA since late 80th.

Intelligence agencies  get special status under corporatism. moreover they now constitute the backbone Media-Military-Industrial Complex which is extended to major Wall Street banks (which historically have a very close ties with CIA; CIA was formed by lawyers which served their interests such  as Allen Dulles).   Under neoliberalism the financial oligarchy became the most important part of this complex (especially Goldman Sachs  and Citibank). Recently Silicon Valley mega corporations also joined it and all of them are closely connected to NSA and CIA (especially Amazon, Google and Facebook). So now this is Media-Military-Financial-Industrial-SiliconValley complex.

This is a new unelected aristocracy with huge financial resources that stands above law and can't be easily demotes from their positions (on intelligence againces level, J. Edgar Hoover  is an excellent example here).  They now are a new incarnation of  the "royal court", which can, like in old times,  to depose a monarch or even kill him.

So in a way the concept of "deep state"  implies and emphasizes the hypertrophied role of three letter agencies among unelected government bureaucracy. They are  joined at the heap with  financial oligarchy, MIC and Silicon Valley in national politics. Especially in formulating foreign policy. Influence  of MIC on  the US foreign policy is nothing new.  After all one of the hypotheses of why JFK was killed is that his  policies were directed against intelligences agencies and MIC.

But devil is always in details and some features of the USA deep state are unique and different the deep state in other neoliberal countries such as EU, GB or Russia. BTW the term "deep state" originated in Turkey. 

But the deep state victory is always "incomplete."  The "surface state" is still keeping some positions and even try to counterattack deep state in certain areas. Second, the merger of interests of three letter agencies like CIA/NSA (politically active factions at FBI and State Department can be views as subsidiary of CIA, see Strzogate for details ) and Wall Street can never be absolute. They have somewhat different worldviews on both the USA foreign policy priorities and methods of achieving them. Of cause the by-and-large coinside bu still there are some differences. As we can see from Syria war such differences can lead to essentially supporting hostile to each other  group while trying to achive the same color revolution based "regime change" in the country.

Also relations between three letter agencies are far from harmonious at all with CIA ('humint") very concerned about recent rise of status and capabilities of NSA ("sigint").  They lie to each other and try to poach  funds from the other agencies. for example the relations between NSA and CIA are far from harmonious with CIA brass being very concerted about increase  role of NSA in the era on Internet communications  and trying to counterattack. Add to this a special, more independent, status and role of military intelligence which also in now in best relations with both CIA and NSA (as destiny of General Flynn, who served as the director of the Defense Intelligence Agency,  and in 2017 was entrapped by FBI with the help of NSA and CIA can attest). So in certain areas they are more like spiders in the cage with CIA perfectly capable attacking NSA and vise versa. That gives us some hope. 

Two party system invented by elite of Great Britain proved to be perfect for inverted totalitarism type of regimes, including the US neoliberalism.  But there is second trend here which increase the elite control of the county:  this is dramatic transfer of power to institutions of "deep state", which in certain sense now like TBTF are beyond civil  control. As well as a secret alliance between Wall Street and CIA and other three letter agencies.

All those factors essentially make Presidential and Congress election in the USA truly optional, serving mostly ceremonial, decorative function. Yes elections still continue to exist and sometime provide good theater, within the strict rules of an emasculated "two parties, winner takes all" system, ehich if you think about it is not that different from one party elections in the USSR.

They still have a role in legitimizing the current rulers, although actual rules are not the same as those who were elected. This is especially true about the two recent US Presidents: George W Bush and Brack Obama.  And that explains why Barack Obama foreign policy is essentially a continuation of policy of George W Bush with minor tweaks.  Just the fact that neocon Victoria Nuland who worked for Cheney was promoted to the key role of the  Assistant Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs  tells that Obama controls very little in foreign policy area and that 'deep state" is functioning autonomously and without control of "surface state".

The USA political system does not have a single government. It actually has two distinct governments. They are called "surface state" or Madisonians and "deep state" or Trumanites (national security establishment in alliance with selected members of financial oligarchy, media owners and technocrats). The latter term emerged because it was Harry Truman who signed National Security Act of 1947  which created major three letter agencies (CIA, DOD, FBI and NSA).

Simplifying the complex relation between those two US governments (sometimes Madisonians fight back and have Trumanites to make a temporary retreat) we can say that:

In other words, the "Deep state" represent the actual government of the  society by unelected elite, which is  composed of high-level officials within the intelligence services, military, law enforcement, judiciary and, often, organized crime. It is an extended variant of military industrial complex dominance (see Media-Military-Industrial Complex) as it includes selected members of financial oligarchy along with industrialists and media owners.  In British author John le Carré’s latest novel, A Delicate Truth, a character describes the Deep State as

“… the ever-expanding circle of non-governmental insiders from banking, industry and commerce who were cleared for highly classified information denied to large swathes of Whitehall and Westminster.”

Conversion of system of governance to "deep state" which happened in the USA almost immediately after 1947 essentially made elections optional, but they still continue to exist as a ceremonial function for the sake of providing the legitimacy of the government in an emasculated "two parties system" form.  While relationship is more complex then simple dominance, in essence "deep state" is the tail that wag the dog. And JFK assassination (Nov 22, 1963)  meant first of all the triumph of "deep state" over "surface state". In this sense 9/11 was just the last nail in the coffin of democracy.

The term “Deep State” was coined in Turkey (and actually Wikipedia discusses only it) but it is widespread modern phenomenon which can also be found in most other states, especially neoliberal states. For example, it able to govern the United States without reference to the consent of the governed as expressed through the formal political process, after which elected candidates switly perform "bat and switch" maneuver and conduct polices radically different from those for which they were elected. As any elite dominance project it is deeply anti-democratic although it uses fig leaf of democracy for foreign expansion via color revolutions and wars. 

Like in Third Reich, this dominance is supported by relentless propaganda and brainwashing with mechanisms polished since Reagan to perfection. There is now no problem to create an "enemy of the people" when the elite wants and it does not matter which country or individual is selected as an enemy. The essence of elite politics in this area was best formulated by Hermann Goering, President of the Reichstag, Nazi Party, and Luftwaffe Commander in Chief

Naturally the common people don't want war: Neither in Russia, nor in England, nor for that matter in Germany. That is understood. But, after all, it is the leaders of the country who determine the policy and it is always a simple matter to drag the people along, whether it is a democracy, or a fascist dictatorship, or a parliament, or a communist dictatorship. Voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked, and denounce the peacemakers for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. It works the same in any country.

In other words this is a hidden set of political actors and powerful institutions that are concealed within the wider, “visible” state which, essentially, took over the functions of traditional state, leaving such organization of Executive branch, President, congress and courts mainly ceremonial role. Such transformation is well explained by the The Iron Law of Oligarchy and in various forms happened in Third Reich, the USSR, Turkey, China and many other countries.

Mike Lofgren: the “deep state” is the Washington-Wall-Street-Silicon-Valley Establishment

Here is how The American Conservative covers this topic:

Steve Sailer links to this unsettling essay by former career Congressional staffer Mike Lofgren, who says the “deep state” — the Washington-Wall-Street-Silicon-Valley Establishment — is a far greater threat to liberty than you think. The partisan rancor and gridlock in Washington conceals a more fundamental and pervasive agreement.

Excerpts:

These are not isolated instances of a contradiction; they have been so pervasive that they tend to be disregarded as background noise. During the time in 2011 when political warfare over the debt ceiling was beginning to paralyze the business of governance in Washington, the United States government somehow summoned the resources to overthrow Muammar Ghaddafi’s regime in Libya, and, when the instability created by that coup spilled over into Mali, provide overt and covert assistance to French intervention there. At a time when there was heated debate about continuing meat inspections and civilian air traffic control because of the budget crisis, our government was somehow able to commit $115 million to keeping a civil war going in Syria and to pay at least £100m to the United Kingdom’s Government Communications Headquarters to buy influence over and access to that country’s intelligence. Since 2007, two bridges carrying interstate highways have collapsed due to inadequate maintenance of infrastructure, one killing 13 people. During that same period of time, the government spent $1.7 billion constructing a building in Utah that is the size of 17 football fields. This mammoth structure is intended to allow the National Security Agency to store a yottabyte of information, the largest numerical designator computer scientists have coined. A yottabyte is equal to 500 quintillion pages of text. They need that much storage to archive every single trace of your electronic life.

Yes, there is another government concealed behind the one that is visible at either end of Pennsylvania Avenue, a hybrid entity of public and private institutions ruling the country according to consistent patterns in season and out, connected to, but only intermittently controlled by, the visible state whose leaders we choose. My analysis of this phenomenon is not an exposé of a secret, conspiratorial cabal; the state within a state is hiding mostly in plain sight, and its operators mainly act in the light of day. Nor can this other government be accurately termed an “establishment.” All complex societies have an establishment, a social network committed to its own enrichment and perpetuation. In terms of its scope, financial resources and sheer global reach, the American hybrid state, the Deep State, is in a class by itself. That said, it is neither omniscient nor invincible. The institution is not so much sinister (although it has highly sinister aspects) as it is relentlessly well entrenched. Far from being invincible, its failures, such as those in Iraq, Afghanistan and Libya, are routine enough that it is only the Deep State’s protectiveness towards its higher-ranking personnel that allows them to escape the consequences of their frequent ineptitude.
 

More:

Washington is the most important node of the Deep State that has taken over America, but it is not the only one. Invisible threads of money and ambition connect the town to other nodes. One is Wall Street, which supplies the cash that keeps the political machine quiescent and operating as a diversionary marionette theater. Should the politicians forget their lines and threaten the status quo, Wall Street floods the town with cash and lawyers to help the hired hands remember their own best interests. The executives of the financial giants even have de facto criminal immunity. On March 6, 2013, testifying before the Senate Judiciary Committee, Attorney General Eric Holder stated the following: “I am concerned that the size of some of these institutions becomes so large that it does become difficult for us to prosecute them when we are hit with indications that if you do prosecute, if you do bring a criminal charge, it will have a negative impact on the national economy, perhaps even the world economy.” This, from the chief law enforcement officer of a justice system that has practically abolished the constitutional right to trial for poorer defendants charged with certain crimes. It is not too much to say that Wall Street may be the ultimate owner of the Deep State and its strategies, if for no other reason than that it has the money to reward government operatives with a second career that is lucrative beyond the dreams of avarice — certainly beyond the dreams of a salaried government employee. [3]

The corridor between Manhattan and Washington is a well trodden highway for the personalities we have all gotten to know in the period since the massive deregulation of Wall Street: Robert Rubin, Lawrence Summers, Henry Paulson, Timothy Geithner and many others. Not all the traffic involves persons connected with the purely financial operations of the government: In 2013, General David Petraeus joined KKR (formerly Kohlberg Kravis Roberts) of 9 West 57th Street, New York, a private equity firm with $62.3 billion in assets. KKR specializes in management buyouts and leveraged finance. General Petraeus’ expertise in these areas is unclear. His ability to peddle influence, however, is a known and valued commodity. Unlike Cincinnatus, the military commanders of the Deep State do not take up the plow once they lay down the sword. Petraeus also obtained a sinecure as a non-resident senior fellow at theBelfer Center for Science and International Affairs at Harvard. The Ivy League is, of course, the preferred bleaching tub and charm school of the American oligarchy.

Lofgren goes on to say that Silicon Valley is a node of the Deep State too, and that despite the protestations of its chieftains against NSA spying, it’s a vital part of the Deep State’s apparatus. More:

The Deep State is the big story of our time. It is the red thread that runs through the war on terrorism, the financialization and deindustrialization of the American economy, the rise of a plutocratic social structure and political dysfunction. Washington is the headquarters of the Deep State, and its time in the sun as a rival to Rome, Constantinople or London may be term-limited by its overweening sense of self-importance and its habit, as Winwood Reade said of Rome, to “live upon its principal till ruin stared it in the face.”

Read the whole thing.  Steve Sailer says that the Shallow State is a complement to the Deep State. The Shallow State is, I think, another name for what the Neoreactionaries call “The Cathedral,” defined thus:

The Cathedral — The self-organizing consensus of Progressives and Progressive ideology represented by the universities, the media, and the civil service. A term coined by blogger Mencius Moldbug. The Cathedral has no central administrator, but represents a consensus acting as a coherent group that condemns other ideologies as evil. Community writers have enumerated the platform of Progressivism as women’s suffrage, prohibition, abolition, federal income tax, democratic election of senators, labor laws, desegregation, popularization of drugs, destruction of traditional sexual norms, ethnic studies courses in colleges, decolonization, and gay marriage. A defining feature of Progressivism is that “you believe that morality has been essentially solved, and all that’s left is to work out the details.” Reactionaries see Republicans as Progressives, just lagging 10-20 years behind Democrats in their adoption of Progressive norms.

You don’t have to agree with the Neoreactionaries on what they condemn — women’s suffrage? desegregation? labor laws? really?? — to acknowledge that they’re onto something about the sacred consensus that all Right-Thinking People share. I would love to see a study comparing the press coverage from 9/11 leading up to the Iraq War with press coverage of the gay marriage issue from about 2006 till today. Specifically, I’d be curious to know about how thoroughly the media covered the cases against the policies that the Deep State and the Shallow State decided should prevail. I’m not suggesting a conspiracy here, not at all. I’m only thinking back to how it seemed so obvious to me in 2002 that we should go to war with Iraq, so perfectly clear that the only people who opposed it were fools or villains. The same consensus has emerged around same-sex marriage. I know how overwhelmingly the news media have believed this for some time, such that many American journalists simply cannot conceive that anyone against same-sex marriage is anything other than a fool or a villain. Again, this isn’t a conspiracy; it’s in the nature of the thing. Lofgren:

Cultural assimilation is partly a matter of what psychologist Irving L. Janis called “groupthink,” the chameleon-like ability of people to adopt the views of their superiors and peers. This syndrome is endemic to Washington: The town is characterized by sudden fads, be it negotiating biennial budgeting, making grand bargains or invading countries. Then, after a while, all the town’s cool kids drop those ideas as if they were radioactive. As in the military, everybody has to get on board with the mission, and questioning it is not a career-enhancing move. The universe of people who will critically examine the goings-on at the institutions they work for is always going to be a small one. As Upton Sinclair said, “It is difficult to get a man to understand something when his salary depends upon his not understanding it.”

A more elusive aspect of cultural assimilation is the sheer dead weight of the ordinariness of it all once you have planted yourself in your office chair for the 10,000th time. Government life is typically not some vignette from an Allen Drury novel about intrigue under the Capitol dome. Sitting and staring at the clock on the off-white office wall when it’s 11:00 in the evening and you are vowing never, ever to eat another piece of takeout pizza in your life is not an experience that summons the higher literary instincts of a would-be memoirist. After a while, a functionary of the state begins to hear things that, in another context, would be quite remarkable, or at least noteworthy, and yet that simply bounce off one’s consciousness like pebbles off steel plate: “You mean the number of terrorist groups we are fighting is classified?” No wonder so few people are whistle-blowers, quite apart from the vicious retaliation whistle-blowing often provokes: Unless one is blessed with imagination and a fine sense of irony, growing immune to the curiousness of one’s surroundings is easy. To paraphrase the inimitable Donald Rumsfeld, I didn’t know all that I knew, at least until I had had a couple of years away from the government to reflect upon it.

When all you know is the people who surround you in your professional class bubble and your social circles, you can think the whole world agrees with you, or should. It’s probably not a coincidence that the American media elite live, work, and socialize in New York and Washington, the two cities that were attacked on 9/11, and whose elites — political, military, financial — were so genuinely traumatized by the events.

Anyway, that’s just a small part of it, about how the elite media manufacture consent. Here’s a final quote, one from the Moyers interview with Lofgren:

BILL MOYERS: If, as you write, the ideology of the Deep State is not democrat or republican, not left or right, what is it?

MIKE LOFGREN: It’s an ideology. I just don’t think we’ve named it. It’s a kind of corporatism. Now, the actors in this drama tend to steer clear of social issues. They pretend to be merrily neutral servants of the state, giving the best advice possible on national security or financial matters. But they hold a very deep ideology of the Washington consensus at home, which is deregulation, outsourcing, de-industrialization and financialization. And they believe in American exceptionalism abroad, which is boots on the ground everywhere, it’s our right to meddle everywhere in the world. And the result of that is perpetual war.

This can’t last. We’d better hope it can’t last. And we’d better hope it unwinds peacefully.

I, for one, remain glad that so many of us Americans are armed. When the Deep State collapses — and it will one day — it’s not going to be a happy time.

Questions to the room: Is a Gorbachev for the Deep State conceivable? That is, could you foresee a political leader emerging who could unwind the ideology and apparatus of the Deep State, and not only survive, but succeed? Or is it impossible for the Deep State to allow such a figure to thrive? Or is the Deep State, like the Soviet system Gorbachev failed to reform, too entrenched and too far gone to reform itself? If so, what then?

Professor Michael J. Glennon   book “National Security and Double Government.”

The second important thinker in this area is  Professor Michael J. Glennon who wrote the book  “National Security and Double Government.”. The strong point of his views on the subject is that he assumes that there is an internal struggle between those two forms of government, not just passive submission one to nother, but in most cases deep state prevails. This move led the USA "beyond a mere imperial presidency to a bifurcated system — a structure of double government — in which even the President now exercises little substantive control over the overall direction of U.S. national security policy."

The "deep state" (call by Professor Michael J. Glennon) The Trumanites, exersize their power due to alliance with Wall Street, almost unlimited funding (with many hidden sources belong US budget),  higher efficiency, abuse of secrecy, exaggerated threats, peer pressure to conform, and corruption of  the key decision-makers.

Here is how Amazon reviewer Mal Warwick summarized the book in his review written on December 22, 2014

Who makes national security decisions? Not who you think!

Why does Barack Obama's performance on national security issues in the White House contrast so strongly with his announced intentions as a candidate in 2008? After all, not only has Obama continued most of the Bush policies he decried when he ran for the presidency, he has doubled down on government surveillance, drone strikes, and other critical programs.

Michael J. Glennon set out to answer this question in his unsettling new book, National Security and Double Government. And he clearly dislikes what he found.

The answer, Glennon discovered, is that the US government is divided between the three official branches of the government, on the one hand — the "Madisonian" institutions incorporated into the Constitution — and the several hundred unelected officials who do the real work of a constellation of military and intelligence agencies, on the other hand. These officials, called "Trumanites" in Glennon's parlance for having grown out of the national security infrastructure established under Harry Truman, make the real decisions in the area of national security. (To wage the Cold War, Truman created the Joint Chiefs of Staff, the Department of Defense, the CIA, the NSA, and the National Security Council.) "The United States has, in short," Glennon writes, "moved beyond a mere imperial presidency to a bifurcated system — a structure of double government — in which even the President now exercises little substantive control over the overall direction of U.S. national security policy. . . . The perception of threat, crisis, and emergency has been the seminal phenomenon that has created and nurtures America's double government." If Al Qaeda hadn't existed, the Trumanite network would have had to create it — and, Glennon seems to imply, might well have done so.

The Trumanites wield their power with practiced efficiency, using secrecy, exaggerated threats, peer pressure to conform, and the ability to mask the identity of the key decision-maker as their principal tools.

Michael J. Glennon comes to this task with unexcelled credentials. A professor of international law at Tufts and former legal counsel for the Senate Armed Services Committee, he came face to face on a daily basis with the "Trumanites" he writes about. National Security and Double Government is exhaustively researched and documented: notes constitute two-thirds of this deeply disturbing little book.

The more I learn about how politics and government actually work — and I've learned a fair amount in my 73 years — the more pessimistic I become about the prospects for democracy in America. In some ways, this book is the most worrisome I've read over the years, because it implies that there is no reason whatsoever to think that things can ever get better. In other words, to borrow a phrase from the Borg on Star Trek, "resistance is futile." That's a helluva takeaway, isn't it?

On reflection, what comes most vividly to mind is a comment from the late Chalmers Johnson on a conference call in which I participated several years ago. Johnson, formerly a consultant to the CIA and a professor at two campuses of the University of California (Berkeley and later San Diego), was the author of many books, including three that awakened me to many of the issues Michael Glennon examines: Blowback, The Sorrows of Empire, and Nemesis. Johnson, who was then nearly 80 and in declining health, was asked by a student what he would recommend for young Americans who want to combat the menace of the military-industrial complex. "Move to Vancouver," he said.

Another good summary of the book can be found is review by Bruce Morgan (Shadow Government )

October 28, 2014 | Tufts Now

Elected officials are no longer in charge of our national security—and that is undermining our democracy, says the Fletcher School's Michael Glennon

Michael Glennon in his office

"We are clearly on the path to autocracy," says Michael Glennon. "There's no question that if we continue on that path, [the] Congress, the courts and the presidency will ultimately end up . . . as institutional museum pieces." Photo: Kelvin Ma

Michael Glennon knew of the book, and had cited it in his classes many times, but he had never gotten around to reading the thing from cover to cover. Last year he did, jolted page after page with its illuminating message for our time.

The book was The English Constitution, an analysis by 19th-century journalist Walter Bagehot that laid bare the dual nature of British governance. It suggested that one part of government was for popular consumption, and another more hidden part was for real, consumed with getting things done in the world. As he read, Glennon, a professor of international law at the Fletcher School, where he also teaches constitutional law, saw distinct parallels with the current American political scene.

He decided to explore the similarities in a 30-page paper that he sent around to a number of his friends, asking them to validate or refute his argument. As it happens, Glennon's friends were an extraordinarily well-informed bunch, mostly seasoned operatives in the CIA, the U.S. State Department and the military. "Look," he told them. "I'm thinking of writing a book. Tell me if this is wrong." Every single one responded, "What you have here is exactly right."

Expanded from that original brief paper, Glennon's book National Security and Double Government (Oxford University Press) takes our political system to task, arguing that the people running our government are not our visible elected officials but high-level—and unaccountable—bureaucrats nestled atop government agencies.

Glennon's informed critique of the American political system comes from a place of deep regard. Glennon says he can remember driving into Washington, D.C., in the late spring of 1973, at the time of the Senate Watergate hearings, straight from law school at the University of Minnesota, to take his first job as assistant legislative counsel to the U.S. Senate. Throughout his 20s, he worked in government, culminating in his position as legal counsel to the Senate Foreign Relations Committee under Sen. Frank Church from 1977 to 1980. Since entering academic life in the early 1980s, Glennon has been a frequent consultant to government agencies of all stripes, as well as a regular commentator on media outlets such as NPR's All Things Considered, the Today show and Nightline.

In his new book, an inescapable sadness underlies the narrative. "I feel a great sense of loss," Glennon admits. "I devoted my life to these [democratic] institutions, and it's not easy to see how to throw the current trends into reverse." Tufts Now spoke with Glennon recently to learn more of his perspective.

Tufts Now: You've been both an insider and an outsider with regard to government affairs. What led you to write this book?

Michael Glennon: I was struck by the strange continuity in national security policy between the Bush administration and the Obama administration. Obama, as a candidate, had been eloquent and forceful in criticizing many aspects of the Bush administration's national security policies, from drone strikes to Guantanamo to surveillance by the National Security Agency—the NSA—to covert operations. Yet as president, it turned out that he made very, very few changes in these policies. So I thought it was useful to explain the reason for that.

Were you surprised by the continuity?

I was surprised by the extent of it. I knew fundamentally from my own experience that changing national policies is like trying to change the course of an aircraft carrier. These policies in many ways were set long ago, and the national security bureaucracy tends to favor the status quo. Still, I thought that a president like Obama would, with the political wind in his sails and with so much public and congressional support for what he was criticizing, be more successful in fulfilling his promises.

You use the phrase "double government," coined by Walter Bagehot in the 1860s. What did he mean by that?

Walter Bagehot was one of the founders of the Economist magazine. He developed the theory of "double government," which in a nutshell is this. He said Britain had developed two sets of institutions. First came "dignified" institutions, the monarchy and the House of Lords, which were for show and which the public believed ran the government. But in fact, he suggested, this was an illusion.

These dignified institutions generate legitimacy, but it was a second set of institutions, which he called Britain's "efficient" institutions, that actually ran the government behind the scenes. These institutions were the House of Commons, the Cabinet and the prime minister. This split allowed Britain to move quietly from a monarchy to what Bagehot called a "concealed republic."

The thesis of my book is that the United States has also drifted into a form of double government, and that we have our own set of "dignified" institutions—Congress, the presidency and the courts. But when it comes to national security policy, these entities have become largely for show. National security policy is now formulated primarily by a second group of officials, namely the several hundred individuals who manage the agencies of the military, intelligence and law enforcement bureaucracy responsible for protecting the nation's security.

What are some components of this arrangement?

The NSA, the FBI, the Pentagon and elements of the State Department, certainly; generally speaking, law enforcement, intelligence and the military entities of the government. It's a diverse group, an amorphous group, with no leader and no formal structure, that has come to dominate the formation of American national security policy to the point that Congress, the presidency and the courts all defer to it.

You call this group the "Trumanite network" in your book. What's the link to Harry Truman?

It was in Truman's administration that the National Security Act of 1947 was enacted. This established the CIA and the National Security Council and centralized the command of the U.S. military. It was during the Truman administration as well that the National Security Agency [NSA] was set up, in 1952, although that was a secret and didn't come to light for many years thereafter.

In contrast to the Trumanites you set the "Madisonians." How would you describe them?

The Madisonian institutions are the three constitutionally established branches of the federal government: Congress, the judiciary and the president. They are perceived by the public as the entities responsible for the formulation of national security policy, but that belief is largely mistaken.

The idea is driven by regular exceptions. You can always point to specific instances in which, say, the president personally ordered the killing of Osama bin Laden or Congress enacted the War Powers Resolution. But these are exceptions. The norm is that as a general matter, these three branches defer to the Trumanite network, and that's truer all the time.

So the trend is toward increased power on the Trumanite side of the ledger.

Correct.

If that's true, why has there not been a greater outcry from the public, the media—all the observers we have?

I think the principal reason is that even sophisticated students of government operate under a very serious misunderstanding. They believe that the political system is self-correcting. They believe the framers set up a system of government setting power against power, and ambition against ambition, and that an equilibrium would be reached, and that any abuse of power would be checked, and arbitrary power would be prevented.

That is correct as far as it goes, but the reality is that's only half the picture. The other half is that Madison and his colleagues believed that for equilibrium to occur, we would have an informed and engaged citizenry. Lacking that, the entire system corrupts, because individuals are elected to office who do not resist encroachments on the power of their branches of government, and the whole equilibrium breaks down.

What role, if any, have the media played?

The media have pretty much been enablers. Although there are a handful of investigative journalists who have done a heroic job of uncovering many of the abuses, they are the exception, for a number of reasons. Number one, the media are a business and have a bottom line. It takes a huge amount of money to fund an investigative journalist who goes about finding sources over a period of years. Very few newspapers or television concerns have those sorts of deep pockets.

Second, access for the press is everything. There is huge incentive to pull punches, and you don't get interviews with top-ranking officials at the NSA or CIA if you're going to offer hard-hitting questions. Look, for example, at the infamous 60 Minutes puff piece on the NSA, a really tragic example of how an otherwise respectable institution can sell its soul and act like an annex of the NSA in order to get some people it wants on the TV screen.

What is the role of terror in this environment?

The whole transfer of power from the Madisonian institutions to the Trumanite network has been fueled by a sense of emergency deriving from crisis, deriving from fear. It's fear of terrorism more than anything else that causes the American people to increasingly be willing to dispense with constitutional safeguards to ensure their safety.

Madison believed that government has two great objects. One object of a constitution is to enable the government to protect the people, specifically from external attacks. The other great object of a constitution is to protect the people from the government. The better able the government is to protect the people from external threats, the greater the threat posed by the government to the people.

You've been involved with the U.S. government for 40 years. How has your view of government changed?

Double government was certainly a factor in the 1970s, but it was challenged for the first time thanks to the activism stemming from the civil rights movement, Vietnam and Watergate. As a result, there were individuals in Congress—Democrats and Republicans like William Fulbright, Frank Church, Jacob Javits, Charles Mathias and many others—who were willing to stand up and insist upon adherence to constitutionally ordained principles. That led to a wave of activism and to the enactment of a number of pieces of reform legislation.

But there is no final victory in Washington. Those reforms have gradually been eaten away and turned aside. I think today we are in many ways right back where we were in the early 1970s. NSA surveillance is an example of that. The Church Committee uncovered something called Operation Shamrock, in which the NSA had assembled a watch list of antiwar and civil rights activists based upon domestic surveillance. Church warned at the time that NSA capabilities were so awesome that if they were ever turned inward on the American people, this nation would cross an abyss from which there is no return. The question is whether we have recently crossed that abyss.

To what degree are we still a functioning democracy? I'm sure you know that President Jimmy Carter told a German reporter last year that he thought we no longer qualified as a democracy because of our domestic surveillance.

We are clearly on the path to autocracy, and you can argue about how far we are down that path. But there's no question that if we continue on that path, America's constitutionally established institutions—Congress, the courts and the presidency—will ultimately end up like Britain's House of Lords and monarchy, namely as institutional museum pieces.

Bruce Morgan can be reached at bruce.morgan@tufts.ed

Here is how Christopher Bellavita in Homeland Security Watch summarize an interesting discussion at Cato think tank which I highly recommend to watch:

Why has American national security policy changed so little from the Bush administration to the Obama

That’s the question Michael J. Glennon asks in his book “National Security and Double Government.”

His answer: national security policy is determined largely by “the several hundred managers of the military, intelligence, diplomatic, and law enforcement agencies who are responsible for protecting the nation and who have come to operate largely immune from constitutional and electoral restraints.” The president, congress and the courts play largely a symbolic role in national security policy, Glennon claims.

You can read a Harvard National Security Journal article that outlines Glennon’s argument at this link: http://harvardnsj.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/01/Glennon-Final.pdf.  The paper is not an especially easy read, but I found it to be well researched and – for  me – persuasive.

His book adds more analysis to the argument, using (from Graham Allison’s Essence of Decision) the rational actor model, the government politics model, and the organizational behavior model. Glennon extends that framework by discussing culture, networks, and the myth of alternative competing hypotheses.  The book is richer, in my opinion.  But the core of Glennon’s position is in the paper.

This link takes you to a video of Glennon talking about his book at the Cato Institute: http://www.cato.org/events/national-security-double-government (the talk starts at the 5:20 mark).

From the Cato site:

In National Security and Double Government, Michael Glennon examines the continuity in U.S. national security policy from the Bush administration to the Obama administration. Glennon explains the lack of change by pointing to the enervation of America’s “Madisonian institutions,” namely, the Congress, the presidency, and the courts. In Glennon’s view, these institutions have been supplanted by a “Trumanite network” of bureaucrats who make up the permanent national security state. National security policymaking has been removed from public view and largely insulated from law and politics. Glennon warns that leaving security policy in the hands of the Trumanite network threatens Americans’ liberties and the republican form of government.

Some blurb reviews:

I’ve spoken to three people I consider to be members of the “shadow national security state.”   One person said Glennon’s argument is nothing new.  The second told me he’s got it exactly right.  The third said it’s even worse.

Professor Peter Dale Scott book and articles

If Michael Glennon conceded defeat, but still has some hope, here we enter perfect Dante hell picture along the lines "Leave all hopes those who dare to enter"

Professor Peter Dale Scott book and article represent probably the most comprehensive coverage, especially his book. But the article in the Asia-Pacific journal represents fair summary of his views on the subject (The State, the Deep State, and the Wall Street Overworld (Updated March 13, 2014):

In the last decade it has become more and more obvious that we have in America today what the journalists Dana Priest and William Arkin have called

two governments: the one its citizens were familiar with, operated more or less in the open: the other a parallel top secret government whose parts had mushroomed in less than a decade into a gigantic, sprawling universe of its own, visible to only a carefully vetted cadre – and its entirety…visible only to God.1

And in 2013, particularly after the military return to power in Egypt, more and more authors referred to this second level as America’s “deep state.”2 Here for example is the Republican analyst Mike Lofgren:

There is the visible government situated around the Mall in Washington, and then there is another, more shadowy, more indefinable government that is not explained in Civics 101 or observable to tourists at the White House or the Capitol. The former is traditional Washington partisan politics: the tip of the iceberg that a public watching C-SPAN sees daily and which is theoretically controllable via elections. The subsurface part of the iceberg I shall call the Deep State, which operates according to its own compass heading regardless of who is formally in power.3

At the end of 2013 a New York Times Op-Ed noted this trend, and even offered a definition of the term that will work for the purposes of this essay:

DEEP STATE n. A hard-to-perceive level of government or super-control that exists regardless of elections and that may thwart popular movements or radical change. Some have said that Egypt is being manipulated by its deep state.4

The political activities of the deep state are the chief source and milieu of what I have elsewhere called “deep politics:” “all those political practices and arrangements, deliberate or not, which are usually repressed rather than acknowledged.”5

Others, like Tom Hayden, call the deep state a “state within the state,” and suggest it may be responsible for the failure of the Obama administration to follow the policy guidelines of the president’s speeches:

We have seen evidence of a "state within the state" before, going back as far as the CIA's operations against Cuba. In Obama's time, the president correctly named the 2009 coup in Honduras a "coup", and then seemed powerless to prevent it.6

This development of a two-level or dual state has been paralleled by two other dualities: the increasing resolution of American society into two classes – the “one percent” and the “ninety-nine percent” – and the bifurcation of the U.S. economy into two aspects: the domestic, still subject to some governmental regulation and taxation, and the international, relatively free from governmental controls.7 All three developments have affected and intensified each other – particularly since the Reagan Revolution of 1980, which saw American inequality of wealth cease to diminish and begin to increase.8 Thus for example we shall see how Wall Street – the incarnation of the “one percent” – played a significant role in increasing the deep state after World War Two, and how three decades later the deep state played a significant role in realigning America for the Reagan Revolution.

In earlier books I have given versions of this America-centered account of America’s shift into empire and a deep state. But another factor to be mentioned is the shift of global history towards an increasingly global society dominated by a few emergent superpowers. This trend was accelerated after the Industrial Revolution by new technologies of transport, from the railroad in the 19th century to the jet plane and space travel in the 20th.9

In the fallout from this rearrangement we must include two world wars, as a result of which Britain ceased to act as the dominant superpower it had been since Napoleon. Not surprisingly, the Soviet Union and the United States subsequently competed in a Cold War to fill the gap. It  was not however predetermined that the Cold War would be as thuggish and covertly violent as for decades it continued to be. For that we should look to more contingent causes on both sides of the Iron Curtain – starting with the character of Stalin and his party but also including the partly responsive development of the American deep state.

The Deep State, The Shadow Government and the Wall Street Overworld

The “deep state” was defined by the UK newsletter On Religion as “the embedded anti-democratic power structures within a government, something very few democracies can claim to be free from.”10 The term originated in Turkey in 1996, to refer to U.S.-backed elements, primarily in the intelligence services and military, who had repeatedly used violence to interfere with and realign Turkey’s democratic political process. Sometimes the definition is restricted to elements within the government (or “a state-within-the state”), but more often in Turkey the term is expanded, for historical reasons, to include “members of the Turkish underworld.”11 In this essay I shall use “deep state” in the larger sense, to include both the second level of secret government inside Washington and those outsiders powerful enough, in either the underworld or overworld, to give it direction. In short I shall equate the term “deep state” with what in 1993 I termed a “deep political system:” “ one which habitually resorts to decision-making and enforcement procedures outside as well as inside those publicly sanctioned by law and society.”12

Like myself, Lofgren suggests an ambiguous symbiosis between two aspects of the American deep state:

1)  the Beltway agencies of the shadow government, like the CIA and NSA, which have been instituted by the public state and now overshadow it, and

2)  the much older power of Wall Street, referring to the powerful banks and law firms located there.

In his words,

It is not too much to say that Wall Street may be the ultimate owner of the Deep State and its strategies, if for no other reason than that it has the money to reward government operatives with a second career that is lucrative beyond the dreams of avarice - certainly beyond the dreams of a salaried government employee.13

I shall argue that in the 1950s Wall Street was a dominating complex. It included not just banks and oil firms but also the oil majors whose cartel arrangements were successfully defended against the U.S. Government by the Wall Street law firm Sullivan and Cromwell, home to the Dulles brothers. This larger complex is what I mean by the Wall Street overworld.

The Long History of the Wall Street Overworld

Lofgren’s inclusion of Wall Street is in keeping with Franklin Roosevelt’s observation in 1933 to his friend Col. E.M. House that “The real truth … is, as you and I know, that a financial element in the larger centers has owned the Government ever since the days of Andrew Jackson.”14

FDR’s insight is well illustrated by the efficiency with which a group of Wall Street bankers (including Nelson Rockefeller’s grandfather Nelson Aldrich and Paul Warburg) were able in a highly secret meeting in 1910 to establish the Federal Reserve System – a system which in effect reserved oversight of the nation’s currency supply and of all America’s banks in the not impartial hands of its largest.15 The political clout of the quasi-governmental Federal Reserve Board (where the federal Treasury is represented but does not dominate) was clearly demonstrated in 2008, when Fed leadership secured instant support from the successive administrations of a Texan Republican president, followed by a Midwest Democratic one, for public money to rescue the reckless management of Wall Street banks: banks Too Big To Fail, and of course far Too Big To Jail, but not Too Big To Bail.16

Wall Street and the Launching of the CIA

Top-level Treasury officials, CIA officers, and Wall Street bankers and lawyers think alike because of the “revolving door” by which they pass easily from private to public service and back. In 1946 General Vandenberg, as Director of Central Intelligence (DCI), recruited Allen Dulles, then a Republican lawyer at Sullivan and Cromwell in New York, "to draft proposals for the shape and organization of what was to become the Central Intelligence Agency in 1947." Dulles promptly formed an advisory group of six men, all but one of whom were Wall Street investment bankers or lawyers.17 Dulles and two of the six (William H. Jackson and Frank Wisner) later joined the agency, where Dulles proceeded to orchestrate policies, such as the overthrow of the Arbenz regime in Guatemala, that he had previously discussed in New York at the Council on Foreign Relations.18

There seems to be little difference in Allen Dulles’s influence whether he was a Wall Street lawyer or a CIA director. Although he did not formally join the CIA until November 1950, he was in Berlin before the start of the 1948 Berlin Blockade, “supervising the unleashing of anti-Soviet propaganda across Europe.”19 In the early summer of 1948 he set up the American Committee for a United Europe (ACUE), support of what became by the early 1950s “the largest CIA operation in Western Europe.”20

The Deep State and Funds for CIA Covert Operations

Wall Street was also the inspiration for what eventually became the CIA’s first covert operation: the use of “over $10 million in captured Axis funds to influence the [Italian] election [of 1948].”21 (The fundraising had begun at the wealthy Brook Club in New York; but Allen Dulles, still a Wall Street lawyer, persuaded Washington, which at first had preferred a private funding campaign, to authorize the operation through the National Security Council and the CIA.)22

Dulles’s friend Frank Wisner then left Wall Street to oversee an enlarged covert operations program through the newly created Office of Policy Co-ordination (OPC). Dulles, still a lawyer, campaigned successfully to reconstruct Western Europe through what became known as the Marshall Plan.23 Together with George Kennan and James Forrestal, Dulles also “helped devise a secret codicil [to the Marshall Plan] that gave the CIA the capability to conduct political warfare. It let the agency skim millions of dollars from the plan.”24

This created one of the earlier occasions when the CIA, directly or indirectly, recruited local assets involved in drug trafficking. AFL member Irving Brown, the assistant of AFL official Jay Lovestone (a CIA asset), was implicated in drug smuggling activities in Europe, at the same time that he used funds diverted from the Marshall Plan to establish

a "compatible left" labor union in Marseilles with Pierre Ferri-Pisani. On behalf of Brown and the CIA, Ferri-Pisani (a drug smuggler connected with Marseilles crime lord Antoine Guerini), hired goons to shellack striking Communist dock workers.25

An analogous funding source for the CIA developed in the Far East: the so-called

"M-Fund," a secret fund of money of enormous size that has existed in Japan [in 1991] for more than forty years. The Fund was established by the United States in the immediate postwar era for essentially the same reasons that later gave rise to the Marshall Plan of assistance by the U.S. to Western Europe, including the Federal Republic of Germany….. The M-Fund was used not only for the building of a democratic political system in Japan but, in addition, for all of the purposes for which Marshall Plan funds were used in Europe.26

For at least two decades the CIA lavishly subsidized right-wing parties in countries including Japan and Indonesia, possibly still using captured Axis funds.27 (One frequently encounters the claim that the source of the M-fund was gold looted by Japan during World War Two (“Yamashita’s gold”).28

As a general rule the CIA, rather than assimilating these funds into its own budget, appears to have left them off the books in the hands of cooperative allied powers – ranging from other U.S. agencies like the Economic Cooperation Administration (ECA. set up in 1948 to administer the Marshall Plan) to oil companies to powerful drug kingpins.29

The CIA never abandoned its dependency on funds from outside its official budget to conduct its clandestine operations. In Southeast Asia, in particular, its proprietary firm Sea Supply Inc., supplied an infrastructure for a drug traffic supporting a CIA-led paramilitary force, PARU.30 The CIA appears also to have acted in coordination with slush funds from various U.S. government contracts, ranging from the Howard Hughes organization to (as we shall see) the foreign arms sales of U.S. defense corporations like Lockheed and Northrop.31

... ... ....


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[Nov 15, 2018] I think the film should be seen not so much as a testament to the success of the Israel lobby, but of its failure

Nov 15, 2018 | therealnews.com

ALI ABUNIMAH: Yeah, it can be very intimidating and disruptive on a personal level. And you know, there are certainly stories of students feeling that in the film, and that we've also reported on for many years. But I think people should look at the big picture; that this operation the film reveals, that Israel has been spending tens or hundreds of millions of dollars on, Israel and its lobby groups, and people like Sheldon Adelson, Donald Trump's biggest campaign donor, and people like Adam Milstein, who is named in the film as- he's an Israeli-American financier, a convicted tax dodger who is named in the film as one of the main funders and founders of the anonymous smear site Canary Mission, which tries to destroy the reputations of college students so that they can't get jobs.

It is very scary for individuals. But the big picture here is that Israel is losing the support of progressive segments of society, big time. We see that in poll after poll. Just last month there was a poll by YouGov for the Economist that showed a collapse in support for Israel among progressives, among liberals, among younger people, among people of color. And that the strong support for Israel now looks exactly like Donald Trump's base. It's white, it's male, it's very right wing.

And so I think the film should be seen not so much as a testament to the success of the Israel lobby, but of its failure. The fact that they have had to mount this massive operation, and it has not been able to staunch the hemorrhage of support for Israel, I think really should encourage people that speaking out is the right thing to do. The more normalized that it becomes to talk about Palestinian rights, the less power the smear and intimidation tactics have. So the message I think people should take away is speak up more, not less, because we're winning.

BEN NORTON: Well, we'll have to end it there. We were speaking with Ali Abunimah, who is the co-founder and editor of The Electronic Intifada. The Electronic Intifada is an award-winning news website that published this censored Al Jazeera documentary with an undercover reporter investigating the Israel lobby in the United States. Thanks for joining us, Ali.


SkepticalPartisan a day ago ,

Transparency and knowledge is the key to dis-empowering the power elite and empowering everyday people. Israel's suppression of this film is a clear example of information control. Thank you Ali Abunimah and The Electronic Intifada for helping relieve the yolk of information asymmetry with regards to Israel's treatment of Palestinians and Israel's manipulation of American policy.

Misterioso SkepticalPartisan a day ago ,

Amen.

Abner Doubleday 7 hours ago ,

I wrote a letter to my U. S. senator, critical of accepting "contributions" from an ardently pro-Israel government lobbying group. The FBI showed up in the neighborhood and called to interrogate me. This for holding my (so-anointed "liberal") senator accountable to act in the "best interests" of constituents!

Totalitarianism and fascism are creeping forward, and the governments of Israel and its US collaborators -- in every branch and level of government -- are its leading proponents. What the Zionists do is not only unconstitutional, it's seditious.

A lot of us in the human race don't look lightly upon truly seditious behavior, such as that carried out every day by the U. S. government on behalf of multinational corporations and foreign agents in direct violations of U. S. laws. Indeed, a lot of us consider sedition a capital crime, with all its attendant accountability implied.

[Nov 15, 2018] Finally Released Censored Al Jazeera Documentary Exposes Israel-Backed Attacks on US Activists

Nov 13, 2018 | therealnews.com
Series Content Al Jazeera's undercover film The Lobby – USA, censored by Qatar, has finally been published by The Electronic Intifada. Editor Ali Abunimah discusses the documentary's explosive revelations, exposing Israel-backed attacks on US activists

[Nov 14, 2018] Jewish Politics in America A Post Political View by Gilad Atzmon

Nov 14, 2018 | www.unz.com
The Washington Report on the Middle East Affairs has been producing outstanding work as well. The crucial question is, why have Americans let this happen?

My study of Jewish ID politics suggests that America isn't just influenced by one Jewish lobby or another. The entire American political-cultural-spiritual spectrum has been transformed into a internal Jewish exchange. Most American do not see the true nature of the battle they participate in and, for the obvious reasons, their media and their academics do not help. It is more convenient to keep Americans in the dark.

America is rapidly moving towards a civil war. The divide isn't only ideological or political. The split is geographical, spiritual, educational and demographical. In a Vox article titled, "The Midterm Elections Revealed that America is in a Cold Civil War," Zack Beauchamp writes, "This is a country fundamentally split in two, with no real room for compromise." Of the midterm election Beauchamp reports that "American politics is polarized not on the basis of class or even ideology, but on identity One side open to mass immigration and changes to the country's traditional racial hierarchy, the other is deeply hostile to it." He correctly observes that "Republicans and Democrats see themselves as part of cultural groups that are fundamentally distinct: They consume different media and attend different churches; live in distinct kinds of places and rarely interact with people who disagree with them."

Despite this American schism, Israel and its Lobby are somehow able to influence both sides, managing to finding pathways to the secluded corridors of both parties. Although Democrats and Republicans can no longer talk to each other, it seems that both are happy to talk to Israel and the Lobby. And it is at AIPAC's annual conference that these political foes compete in their eagerness to appease a foreign state. This anomaly in American politics demands attention.

As a former Israeli, I had not observed the effects of the Israel/ Jewish Diaspora dilemma until I had my experience at the Student Union Hall in Britain. Israel was born with the Zionist desire to eradicate the identity of Jews as cosmopolitans. Zionism promised to bond the Jew with the soil, with a territory, with borders. Thus, it is consistent with the Zionist paradigm that Israel is notorious for its appalling treatment ofasylum seekers, immigrants and, of course, the indigenous people of the land. Israel has surrounded itself with separation walls. Israel deployed hundreds of snipers in its fight to stop the March of Return – a 'caravan' of Palestinian refugees who were marching towards its border. Israel has been putting into daily practice that which Trump has promised to deliver. For a Trump supporter, Israel's politics is a wet dream. Maybe Trump should consider tweaking his motto in 2020 into 'Let's make America Israel.' This would encompass building separation walls, bullying America's neighbors, the potential to cleanse America of the 'enemy within,' and so on. It is not surprising that in 2016 Trump beat Clinton in an Israeli absentee exit poll . The Israelis do love Trump. To them, he is a vindication of their hawkish ideological path. Although during the election Trump was castigated as a vile anti-Semite and a Hitler figure by the Jewish progressive press, once elected, Fox News was quick to point out that Trump was actually the 'First Jewish President.'

We can see that Israel, Trump and his voters have a lot in common. They want militant anti immigration policies , they love 'walls,' they hate Muslims and they believe in borders. When alt right icon Richard Spencer described himself on Israeli TV as "a White Zionist" he was actually telling the truth. Israel puts into practice the ideas that Spencer and Trump can so far only entertain. But the parallels between Israel and the Trump administration's Republican voters is just one side of the story.

... ... ...

The story of Jewish political strength in America doesn't end there. A New York Jew can easily metamorphosize from an hard-core Identitarian into rabid Zionist settler and vice versa, but such a manoeuvre is not available to ordinary Americans. White nationalist Richard Spencer can not make the political shift that would turn him into a progressive or a liberal just as it is unlikely that a NY transsexual icon would find it possible to become a 'redneck.' While Jewish political identity is inherently elastic and can morph endlessly, the American political divide is fairly rigid. Jewish ideologists frequently change positions and camps, they shift from left to right, from Clinton to Trump (Dershowitz), they support immigration in their host counties yet oppose it in their own Jewish State, they are against rigid borders and even states in general, yet support the two state solution in Palestine (Chomsky). Gentiles are less flexible. They are expected to be coherent and consistent.

It was this manoeuvrability that made PM Netanyahu's 2015 speech in front of a joint session of Congress a 'success,' although it might well have been considered a humiliation for any American with an ounce of patriotic pride. As we wellknow, Bibi can communicate easily with both Republicans and Democrats just as he cansimultaneously befriend Trump and Putin. ....

... ... ...


jilles dykstra , says: November 14, 2018 at 8:35 am GMT

Reading the article the thought came up 'when will the USA, the majority of USA citizens, (begin to) realise that the era of USA foreign politics for internal political reasons, is over, no longer affordable ?'
The 19th century USA Civil War was horrible, as with all civil wars it was, to a large extent a foreign war.
If indeed again a USA civil war starts, I'm not optimistic about the possibility of preventing it, not much of the present USA will still be there at the end, fysically.
And, will there still be a political USA when the fighting stops, or will it end as Germany, the foreign victors creating the USA they want ?
A USA, as Germany now under Merkel, intent on destroying itself culturally ?
Digital Samizdat , says: November 14, 2018 at 11:39 am GMT
So good to see Gilad Atzmon here at Unz. I have read his two books, The Wandering Who? and Being in Time , and can thoroughly recommend them.

These Jewish bodies tend to preach inclusiveness while practicing exclusivity.

But of course! They first begged for inclusion into our powers structures, then once we complied, they returned the favor by taking them over and excluding us from them.

Pongid-American , says: November 14, 2018 at 2:28 pm GMT
This is a bit reductive. This commenter does not recognize himself in the dichotomy above. When forced to choose a race on bureaucratic forms, this commenter enters 'human.' Letting them call you an American opens you up for intensely manipulative statist propaganda. And when you know your rights – your human rights, as opposed to your bullshit half-assed revoked constitutional rights – your race is incidental. You know that nondiscrimination underpins your ethics and the law.

This sort of identity is certainly ferociously suppressed by the Israeli fifth column. Falk is this kind of guy too, a Jew but so what, and look what they did to him. Ajamu Baraka too. This overwhelming tidal wave of immigrants from the global south: they grew up with human rights, including the crucial right to solidarity, which negates all the invidious aspects of identity politics. Basically, as a human you side with underdogs worldwide: Okinawans, Palestinians, landless Latin Americans, Africans, you name it. Cohesive social forces are not confined to ethnic groups.

Tensions behind the Iron Curtain inside the US are incidental. The real conflict is us humans versus overreaching states. Given the downtrodden nature of the US subject population, this conflict is playing out mainly outside US borders. The left/right continuum has always been a CIA construction. Statists and humanists array on an orthogonal axis, and that contention continued when CIA rolled the old left up. Cosmopolitans have not gone away.

Israel may be infecting the US with statist divide et impera, but humanist institutions are penetrating Israel too. Look what's happening as the HRC and other human rights treaty bodies review Israel.

http://www.treatybodywebcast.org/cat-57th-session-israel/

Israel is formally accused of interpreting its commitments in bad faith. This allows treaty bodies to gang up and apply international criminal law to Israeli torture, murder, and extermination. It's already happening to criminal US officials. Israel's next.

Bardon Kaldian , says: November 14, 2018 at 2:51 pm GMT
Atzmon is right re "New York Jews", them being potentially mutable. But, Israelis, being normal nationalists, cannot show the same level of "shape-shifting". A multiculturalist minority in one country can become other nation's nationalist majority. Just, Israeli nationalists cannot become Israeli open borders advocates, multiculturalists, globalists etc.

Only a minority population, basically strangers in another country, can practice various ways of behavior. Host, dominant culture in a country- cannot. Dershowitz can change positions; just, both Netanyahu & any Israeli labor politician can not.

Johnny Smoggins , says: November 14, 2018 at 2:51 pm GMT
It's the hypocrisy that pisses everyone off with Jews. Few people, especially on the right, have any issue with a nation defending itself. It's that the same Jews who are trying to shove diversity/multiculturalism/refugees 49.Reuben Kaspate says: November 14, 2018 at 3:42 pm GMT Civil war? How soon are we talking here? Perhaps, the status quo will be the foreseeable future just humming along. down our throats are either supportive or silent when it comes to Israel making itself into a pure ethnostate behind barbed wire.

... ... ...

Miro23 , says: November 14, 2018 at 4:45 pm GMT

But at a certain point in my life, around my thirties, I started to find all of it too exhausting. I wanted to simplify things. I demoted myself into an ordinary human being.

A lot of people want this, but ordinary humans beings also have to live in societies – and quite sophisticated ones at that. Elected representatives (or leadership) need responsibility and integrity for it to work.

THE US JOINS THE 3RD WORLD

Government responsibility and integrity are not guaranteed (notably in places like Africa and S.E. Asia), but the United States is probably the leading example of a government failure in an advanced society. In the US, like much of the 3rd world, special interests (minority ethnic and commercial) loot the public through a corrupt bargain with the holders of political power. Hillary Clinton was the classic example, with the same "Pay to Play" philosophy as the usual leadership of the Philippines or the Congo.

The 3rd world antidotes are Nationalism and Populism, but having gained power, political leaders usually sell out (sounds familiar). Also the public of the US have learnt to be trusting, and find it hard to believe that they've been hit by a classic 3rd world problem.

In the US, Zionists have looted $ trillions in support of their Special Interest (Israel) and corporations have extracted many more $ trillions through the mass outsourcing of entire industries, complete with their technology and supply networks to Asia. It's not engraved in stone that US industry, had to relocated to Asia or Indians have to be recruited for its IT work. Germany and Japan for example, have held onto their industrial leadership in recent decades and the US could have done the same. At one time the US was the world leader in US based automobile production (Detroit), steel, aluminium, camera and film, industrial chemicals, communications equipment, computers and electronics, aircraft and aerospace (still partly) etc. With what's left in mostly in services and retail (often looted by Hedge Fund asset strippers).

In other words, under a genuine post WW2 "America First" policy involving top quality national education, research and government support of leading industries, the US could still be the world's leading industrial and economic power and not have to worry about debt, deficits and social decline, and also find plenty of jobs for Latino migrants.

However, the US got instead its present 3rd world style corrupt elite who know that nationalism is their Nº1 enemy.

Only Anglos can mount a nationalist challenge, hence the paranoia when Trump arrived on the scene with his "America First" dialogue and Anglo base. In contrast, the whole apparatus of the Zioglob/ deep state/MSM defence is Identitarian, and aimed at destroying the foundations of Anglo society, with LGBT, "White guilt dialectics", multiculturalism, exclusion from Ivy League universities, Hollywood slime, speech laws, statue demolition, in-your-face Africanization, massive debt, political corruption, open frontiers and exporting middle class jobs.

CHINA JOINS THE 1ST WORLD

The Chinese seem to be doing it right.They have an explicit national policy to gain and hold top positions in key world industries and make it a joint national effort to succeed (especially in national human development/education). Also when they find corrupt government officials (even at high levels) they quickly put them on trial and shoot them.

anonymous [739] Disclaimer , says: November 14, 2018 at 5:24 pm GMT
Winston Churchill talked about this/these divisions in the Jewish people in the 1930s, back before Israel became a Jewish ethnostate – he presented the main 2 divisions between ethnic Jews who fell down in to the worst forms of Communism, Bolshevism, Anarchism in Russia and Eastern Europe and those other ethnic Jews who were sort of doing OK being loyal to their European/American countries especially England they lived in while also promoting a healthier form of Zionism working for some eventual Jewish national state somewhere probably in then British administered Palestine.

Zionism vs Communism – a struggle for the Jewish Soul:

https://communismblog.wordpress.com/2014/12/10/zionism-versus-bolshevism-by-winston-churchill/

Churchill didn't present the extremely bad alternative we had today:

Jews in the diasapora everywhere from Russia to Poland to Germany, France, England, Canada, Sweden Australia, few left in South Africa our USA doing this:

Promoting Israel over everything as an exclusively Jewish ethno state with endless US, UK other wars against Israel's neighbors and .

Promoting the worst forms of multi culturalism, open borders immigration in to the West, Jewish media mafia domination/monopoly of the mainstream media, social media in USA, UK, Sweden etc promoting the worst forms of porn, rap music, fake news, endless movies and TV shows demonizing all White European men as evil Racists, rapists – promoting the worst Jewish feminists/lesbians to the US Supreme Court, Rachel Maddow type news commentary etc.

Agent76 , says: November 14, 2018 at 5:54 pm GMT
Nov 3, 2018 The Lobby – USA, episode 1

The Covert War. This video is posted here for news reporting purposes.

Been_there_done_that , says: November 14, 2018 at 6:31 pm GMT
@OMG

He, I believe, was the first to identify or at least name and define the religion of Holocaustianity and deserves credit for that.

Ingrid Rimland openly used that term decades ago already to describe this religion, years before she eventually married Ernst Zündel.

Rurik , says: November 14, 2018 at 6:34 pm GMT
Hello Mr. Atzmom,

I have long admired your noble efforts on behalf of the Palestinian people. You often write in ways that resonate with me, and I'm glad to see you here at The Unz Review.

Israel deployed hundreds of snipers in its fight to stop the March of Return – a 'caravan' of Palestinian refugees who were marching towards its border. Israel has been putting into daily practice that which Trump has promised to deliver. For a Trump supporter, Israel's politics is a wet dream.

But I have to tell you, you're waaayyy off with this characterization of Trump supporters.

There are, I'm sure, a lot of brain-dead "Christian" Zionists who drool at the prospect of slaughtered Palestinians, because murdering Christ's modern day relatives living in his lands are the only way to force Jesus to return and give them their rapture. And I suppose there are perhaps a fraction of a percentage point of people who actually want Trump to throw out (or murder) all non-whites to create the kind of racial purity Bibi and his crew of psychopaths are demanding for Israel.

But from what I've seen, and being one of them, as to the vast majority of what you call "Trump supporters", the idea of murdering people in order to steal their land, is a monstrous absurdity.

For the record, we voted for Trump to end the demonic reign of terror and mass murder in the Middle East. The very kind of mass-murder and daily atrocities that were cackling Hillary's ("we came, we saw, he died) and Bill's ("it's worth it") trademark.

We voted for Trump as a repudiation of those evils, that had long stained our national soul, and indeed had made America the kind of place Bibi was pleased with.

We did not vote for Trump to murder and steal, or otherwise do anyone harm. We voted for Trump to do the opposite, and end the Eternal Wars for Israel. No one on the Alt-right likes the wars. We simply want to be left alone, to pursue our humble lives unmolested by globalists and their nefarious designs for us. Is that so terrible?

. In fact, Israel has become a prime model for American nationalists.

with all due respect, that is a vile smear, Sir.

Where are these 'white nationalists' who're demanding we terrorize and murder and steal other people's land? Eh?

For the record, white nationalists are today's Palestinians. What they're demanding is that they don't have to give up the lands they have, and were born on, and be forced out to make room for unlimited others. Or forced to assimilate to an Hispanic or Muslim culture and way of life. Is that so egregious? To want to persevere as an American in an American culture, with hostility to none, and trade with and good relations with all and any who respond in good faith?

Why is it that all white people, from Europe to N. America and everywhere else, are all expected to invite every non-white, non-Western, often hostile armies of (especially military age young men) into our lands, and then treat them better than the indigenous, white second class citizens?

What is it with that?!

Either Germans and Swedes and Americans hand over their nations or we're all going to be called "Nazis" or "racists" or God help us, "Zionists".

WTF?

We can see that Israel, Trump and his voters have a lot in common. They want militant anti immigration policies , they love 'walls,' they hate Muslims and they believe in borders.

well, only the stupidest imbecile on the planet doesn't believe in borders. (or, an ideologue that wants to see *certain* nations destroyed by armies of immigrants – hostile or otherwise).

No one wants recognized borders more than the Palestinians. It is Israel that refused to state its border, because it want to steal more land. How many Trump voters do you hear talking about stealing other people's land? (I'm not talking about lunatics like Bolton. American nationalists despise Bolton and McCain and all the rest of the Zionist, globalist scum)

And I don't personally know of any reasonable American nationalist who 'hates Muslims'. They just don't want them all here. Have you ever heard of Kosovo, Mr. Atzmon? There are neighborhoods in Michigan that were Polish Catholic for generations. And they liked it that way. They never hated Muslims or anyone else. But they do hate having their communities taken over by alien peoples with alien cultures and now have to listen to 'calls to prayer' at five in the morning every day. And demands for Sharia and other clashes with their former way of life.

Are these people rabid Zionists demanding to murder people and steal their land, just because they don't want throngs of Muslims coming in and transforming their community into something they don't recognize or have any predilection for. Are they simply too racist and hateful, and need to learn to assimilate? Eh?

I don't know who this Spencer guy is, and he sound like controlled opposition to me.

It would be wrong to equate nationalism with the frothing's of some so called "white-Zionist". The only white Zionists I know of are the lunatic "Christian" Zionists.

The nationalists I know of simply want to be left -the fuck- alone!

Stop demanding that we hand over our country to people who don't appreciate it. (Indeed, often hate it) Stop demanding that we doom our children to living in a nation that puts them last in every way, behind every single non-white immigrate that can get to these shores. It is insane to want to have people come to your nation who will be a burden, who often hate you and yours, not to mention your culture, and want to displace you. It is insane to insist that millions of people come in and compete with your children on an un-level playing field. Every non-White immigrant that comes here gets Affirmative Action promotions and jobs and university preference over the white children who were born here. Unless you hate white people, that state of affairs is insane.

And yet here we are being badgered as thieving, psychotic murderous goons (Zionists) simply for wanting what every single sane person on the planet wants: to preserve our way of life and hand it down to our progeny – for them to have a decent life and hope for theirs in turn.

And yet somehow, if we have white skin, wanting this is the most evil and wicked and racist thing imaginable!

Anon [884] Disclaimer , says: November 14, 2018 at 7:00 pm GMT
@Rurik White nationalists are a mixed bunch, going from the very bad (as Atzmon) sees them to, maybe, the peaks of sainthood you attribute to them.

The whole idea of legit owners of land is a rationalization: everybody (meaning: every group) took from someone else the land where they are, and did so by combat and might.

Sure, in our more civilized times we'd like such things to be relegated in the past, borders to become stable, and ethnic cleansing and warfare to be a closed chapter.

These are wishes and words about said wishes, though.

Do you own a swath of land in the countryside, by chance? I do, and over the years all of the three of my neighbours have applied pressure to broaden their owned land so as to include a bit more than mine. Being the first stripe allowed, they'd go on, until I were left with no land at all, all of this while seeing themselves as honest.

Whoever owns land, and whoever doesn't have a need to believe Jews worse than other people knows what human nature is like when it comes to property, borders, and expansion.

L. Allen Bivin , says: November 14, 2018 at 10:03 pm GMT
@Agent76 Thank you for sharing that. Fascinating four-part series.
renfro , says: November 15, 2018 at 1:35 am GMT
@Anon

Do you own a swath of land in the countryside, by chance? I do, and over the years all of the three of my neighbours have applied pressure to broaden their owned land so as to include a bit more than mine.

I doubt your neighbors have attacked you, burned your land, cut off or poisoned your water and then confiscated your house and land ..as is the case of Israel's theft of Palestine.

This is the 21 century, not the 17th or 18th century.

[Nov 14, 2018] Notes From Smartphone-Era Israel by by Andrew J. Bacevich

Nov 14, 2018 | www.theamericanconservative.com

When we interrupt our travels to take a break, I approach a group of young Israeli soldiers, themselves waiting for a bus. Anyone speak English, I ask? Sure, answers one good-looking kid. His accent is familiar.

Where are you from?

Connecticut.

He turns out to be an Ohio State grad, serving a tour as a "lone soldier" -- a Jew but not an Israeli -- in the IDF. There are thousands of them.

I have never been comfortable with this phenomenon. If a young American hankers to defend a country, it strikes me that he ought to defend his own rather than someone else's. But this Buckeye from Connecticut is obviously a fine upstanding fellow so I don't press him to explain.

[Nov 14, 2018] Israel Wins 2018 Election by Philip Giraldi

Nov 14, 2018 | www.unz.com

November 13, 2018

inform@cnionline.org

[Nov 14, 2018] Clapper and Brennan are felons Probably yes.

Notable quotes:
"... Brennan was the leading force behind the prosecutions of eight national security whistleblowers during the Obama administration, almost three times the number of whistleblowers charged under the Espionage Act by all previous presidents combined. ..."
"... I worked for Clapper once and detest the man. I consider him to be an unprincipled careerist devoid of loyalty to anything or anyone but himself. He was IMO by far the worst Director the Defense Intelligence Agency has ever had and a man who did great damage to that agency in the process of seeking favor from his superiors. He is also a confessed perjurer. ..."
"... I first knew John Brennan when he was a junior analyst attached to the CIA station in Saudi Arabia and I was the Defense Attaché in the same embassy. I had a great deal of opportunity to observe him on the job and found him to be lacking in integrity, courtesy and intellect. ..."
"... He is well made up and looks to me to be hanging on through will power. ..."
"... Sir, I have to agree, Trump is beginning to fray on the edges and I think it will get worse. The 24/7 media attacks and resistance movement in general is having the desired impact. Trump is probably already distracted and angered by the impending impeachment process, criminal investigations and lawsuits that are coming beginning in January. Trump will not get a second term even if he wants it at this point. ..."
"... Whether it's Clapper, Clinton, Trump, Brennan, Obama, the neocon cabal in Bush II admin, or pick any scion from Wall Street's rogues gallery of bad actors from the last twenty years. Individuals charged with authority, those holding immense wealth, or in many instances both, have broken public trust. Repeatedly. And often egregiously. And they seem to be increasingly in your face about it. ..."
"... Col.- I agree. Especially with respect to the beating he is taking from all sides. He wrecked both the Bush and Clinton dynasties -- quite the vindictive bunch. And then had the unmitigated gall to take on the DC beast with no real allies and through only sheer tyranny of will. I'm amazed he's lasted this long without totally capitulating. ..."
"... My guess would be that he was a CIA informer/asset on the CPUSA, but apparently wasnt very good at it. Why this resulted in him being effectively promoted to agent, well, no idea. ..."
"... The somewhat paranoid explanation is that the KGB had a cunning plan of hindering US IC by trying to make them recruit morons. Imagine not-Stirlitz, who is CIA/DIA HR but actually KGB, carefully perusing different candidates and trying to figure out who would likely do the most damage if ever employed by the respective agency. ..."
"... He is and has always been a leftist who penalized straight, white men for being such when he was director of DIA without regard to talent or experience issuing a directive to HR that no such could be hired or promoted without his permission in each case. Brennan was a communist sympathizer but Clapper was a proponent of identity politics before it was fashionable. ..."
"... I hope their new best friends in the Democratic "Russia! Russia! Russia!" Party are happy with them. Why do they (if I remember correctly) still have their security clearances? ..."
Nov 14, 2018 | turcopolier.typepad.com

12 November 2018 Clapper and Brennan are felons? Probably yes. "The CIA is required by law to inform congressional oversight committees whenever one of its officers, agents, or administrators breaks the law, when an operation requires congressional approval because it is a "covert action" program, or whenever something happens at the CIA that's potentially controversial and the agency wants to save itself the embarrassment of explaining itself to Congress later.

" I could see no reason to withhold declassification of these documents." Grassley said. "They contained no information that could be construed as [betraying] sources and methods."

Brennan was the leading force behind the prosecutions of eight national security whistleblowers during the Obama administration, almost three times the number of whistleblowers charged under the Espionage Act by all previous presidents combined.

Indeed, I was one of the "Obama Eight." I was charged with five felonies, including three counts of espionage, after I blew the whistle on the CIA's torture program. Of course, I hadn't committed espionage and those charges were eventually dropped, but not until I had agreed to take a plea to a lesser charge. I served 23 months in a federal prison.

Brennan and Clapper think the law doesn't apply to them. But it does. Without the rule of law, we have chaos. The law has to apply equally to all Americans. Brennan and Clapper need to learn that lesson the hard way. They broke the law. They ought to be prosecuted for it." Kiriakou in Consortium News

-----------

I worked for Clapper once and detest the man. I consider him to be an unprincipled careerist devoid of loyalty to anything or anyone but himself. He was IMO by far the worst Director the Defense Intelligence Agency has ever had and a man who did great damage to that agency in the process of seeking favor from his superiors. He is also a confessed perjurer.

I first knew John Brennan when he was a junior analyst attached to the CIA station in Saudi Arabia and I was the Defense Attaché in the same embassy. I had a great deal of opportunity to observe him on the job and found him to be lacking in integrity, courtesy and intellect. It should be remembered that he was a supporter of the Communist Party of the United States before the CIA for some obscure reason hired him. pl

https://consortiumnews.com/2018/11/11/john-brennan-and-james-clapper-should-be-prosecuted-for-breaking-the-law/


Farmer Don , a day ago

It's amazing to some one outside the country, to see how the Liberal people in the US, now love Clapper and Brennan, who they would normally hate, just because they hate Trump so much more. John Kiriakou's book "Doing time like a spy" is an eye opening read for someone who has no idea about the power plays in Washington. I'm glad he has bounced back from the pounding they gave him. I may be wrong, but I think Meuller was the head person pushing the false charges. Kiriakou wrote a piece were he advises Trump not to testify for Meuller, as it will be all twisted against him.
The Porkchop Express -> Farmer Don , 20 hours ago
Farmer

Maureen Dowd had the following column in the NYT on Sunday. Thought it apropos of your comments:

"Only Trump could get the pussy-hat crowd to fill Times Square to protest Jeff Sessions's firing."

https://www.nytimes.com/201...

At some point, the politically powerful and financially wealthy are going to have to be treated -- and be seen to be treated -- equally to their fellow citizens. If this bullshit continues without some publicly corrective measure(s) the wheels are going to start falling off the wagon.

Pat Lang Mod -> The Porkchop Express , 16 hours ago
I have the impression that Trump is entering a melt-down stage, not from the Mueller nonsense but rather just from the unending pressure against him from the left and from within the GOP. I would not be surprised to see some sort of collapse either physically or in policy. Watch the border.
Farmer Don -> Pat Lang , 14 hours ago
I don't know, Trump may be the only person who looks younger after eight years in office! Doesn't he look in better shape then two years ago? I think the White house cooks are limiting his intake of KFC and cheese burgers to good effect.
Pat Lang Mod -> Farmer Don , 13 hours ago
I do not agree. He is well made up and looks to me to be hanging on through will power.
Eric Newhill -> Pat Lang , 11 hours ago
Sir, I have to agree, Trump is beginning to fray on the edges and I think it will get worse. The 24/7 media attacks and resistance movement in general is having the desired impact. Trump is probably already distracted and angered by the impending impeachment process, criminal investigations and lawsuits that are coming beginning in January. Trump will not get a second term even if he wants it at this point.

Basically, the country is done for. In 20 years it will be as fully socialist as the worse of Europe (Sweden?). The 1 and 2 amendments will be gutted. The others? Well, it depends on your skin color, gender and your political leanings. Not good for whites, males and conservatives. The successful will be taxed into oblivion and there will be open borders, globalism, etc. That is what the people have been trained by the education system and Hollywood propaganda to want. Trump was a last gasp of the original American ideals and he knows it. It was all for naught.

English Outsider -> Eric Newhill , 6 hours ago
A long way from 2016, Mr Newhill, both sides of the Atlantic. Still all to play for though.
PRC90 -> The Porkchop Express , 14 hours ago
If the Dem controlled HR play only to the adulation of the pink pussy-hat crowd, and if they regard themselves as far above the Deplorables then the wheels may also drop off. Their exuberance portends some unsafe use of their new found legislative power.
The Porkchop Express -> PRC90 , 7 hours ago
PRC-

I was speaking in a much broader sense about political culpability re: wheels falling off the wagon. I think one of the attitudes that both the pussy-hatters and the deplorables share (though I'm sure they would loathe to admit it) and that is relevant to our current "climate" of hostility revolves around their respective sense on a core issue of fairness. Not that I'm saying life is or should be fair. But, come on. A ruling class can only piss all over a polity, or publicly appear to be doing so, for only so long while telling them it's raining before it boomerangs.

Whether it's Clapper, Clinton, Trump, Brennan, Obama, the neocon cabal in Bush II admin, or pick any scion from Wall Street's rogues gallery of bad actors from the last twenty years. Individuals charged with authority, those holding immense wealth, or in many instances both, have broken public trust. Repeatedly. And often egregiously. And they seem to be increasingly in your face about it.

As Mark Blyth, an economist at Brown, has noted on several occasions: "The Hamptons are not a defensible position."

Col.- I agree. Especially with respect to the beating he is taking from all sides. He wrecked both the Bush and Clinton dynasties -- quite the vindictive bunch. And then had the unmitigated gall to take on the DC beast with no real allies and through only sheer tyranny of will. I'm amazed he's lasted this long without totally capitulating.

Pat Lang Mod -> The Porkchop Express , 7 hours ago
I don't think he will surrender, but he may break.
Snow Flake , 16 hours ago
It should be remembered that he was a supporter of the Communist Party of the United States before the CIA for some obscure reason hired him. pl

doesn't show on Wikipedia on first sight. I don't have much knowledge about the communist party in the US. I recall that Bertold Brecht was on McCarty's list as suspect. That's my field, the arts.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wi...

PRC90 -> Snow Flake , 15 hours ago
According to https://edition.cnn.com/201... his vote for a Communist candidate was his protest against 'the system', ie., it was his means of expressing disquiet with either Nixon or Ford. Perhaps there is a long story in there somewhere.
Pat Lang Mod -> PRC90 , 13 hours ago
Whatever his motivation the vote should have been a permanent bar to employment in the IC
Pat Lang Mod -> Snow Flake , 16 hours ago
It has been widely reported in the media here and he has not denied it. The CPUSA was an instrument of the USSR.
Lefty -> Pat Lang , 15 hours ago
Brennan fits Stalin's description of CPUSA members as "useful idiots".
Snow Flake -> Pat Lang , 15 hours ago
thanks Pat. I trust your takes on people, and I am surely no fan of either, but this puzzled me. So he voted for the communist party in the US, without any awareness it was a lost vote? With 21?

Ok, for some reason I trust Zerohedge in limited ways as a source on the right that may do its homework or Tyler, Durden, was it?

In this context it may make sense, but what is the meta-message concerning the meeting between Putin and Trump? Ok, maybe I should NOT have listed Putin first.

So what are the facts? Well John Brennan was accepted into the CIA in 1980 even though he admitted voting Communist in 1976. This is something inexplicable and astounding for any thinking person to understand of itself.

Brennan, who by then had been appointed President Obama's CIA chief, first publicly revealed this at the Annual Legislative Conference of the Congressional Black Caucus, on 15 September 2016, in Washington DC. There, he said that when he had applied in 1980 to join the CIA, he admitted to them that in the 1976 Presidential election, at the height of the Cold War against the "Godless" Soviet Union, when a strong Christian presidential candidate, Jimmy Carter was running against Gerald Ford, Brennan had voted instead for the candidate of the US Communist Party, Gus Hall, and that he was then greatly relieved to find that this information didn't cause rejection of his CIA application. One must ask why, as it happened 11 years before the "end of the Cold War" in 1991.

widely reported in media, beyond first Google sight by Rush Limbaugh?

Mightypeon -> Snow Flake , 6 hours ago
My guess would be that he was a CIA informer/asset on the CPUSA, but apparently wasnt very good at it. Why this resulted in him being effectively promoted to agent, well, no idea.

My understanding is that promoting assets to actual agents is not a very common thing, but could perhaps be done with people of very marginal asset value.

The somewhat paranoid explanation is that the KGB had a cunning plan of hindering US IC by trying to make them recruit morons. Imagine not-Stirlitz, who is CIA/DIA HR but actually KGB, carefully perusing different candidates and trying to figure out who would likely do the most damage if ever employed by the respective agency.

The bog standard explanation is that he knew someone who knew someone, and this was sufficient.

The last possible explanation was that someone in the hiring process thought it was a good joke. Spies have quirky senses of humor.

blue peacock , a day ago
Can't imagine the meltdown in the media and the Democrats if any of these Deep State characters get indicted? So, the big question is will Trump go for broke?
Keith Harbaugh , 7 hours ago
Apropos of your comments and opinions about Clapper: I have suggested before (without evident result) and now suggest again that you review, in SST, Clapper's 2018 memoir "Facts and Fears: Hard Truths from a Life in Intelligence" .

I did read it, but do not have the expertise to review most of it. However, I will mention, from memory, several things in it that impressed me:

1. Regarding the firing of Michael Flynn as DIA Director, Clapper said that, in his view, the justification for the firing was primarily that Flynn had not handled the civilian DIA workforce properly. Essentially, that he did not coddle them as they wanted/needed to be coddled. He thought he could/should give them orders on how he wanted things to be done, and it was their duty to obey. And if they did not, that that was their fault, not his.

2. He definitely saluted the flag of political correctness.

a) He praised practically to the skies the abilities of the women who supported him. He finished his remarks about them by saying something like:"I hope when they (the women) take over the world that they will remember me kindly."

b) As to homosexuals and the gender insane (that's my, non-professional, term for what many call "transgenders"), he could see no reason whatsoever for discrimination against them. With regard to the gender insane, the job of the government was to protect them against prejudice and hostility.

c) He emphasized his opposition to any discrimination against African-Americans.

I could give my own view on these social/political issues, but that would be a distraction. Let the focus be on his views.

With regard to Clapper's less than accurate response to Senator Wyden, Clapper goes into great detail to give the background to that, and discuss it.
I, although no expert on how IC leaders should answer questions from Congressmen, find his explanation of his action to be satisfying.
Was there a better answer? I do not know. But without further argument, I do not see his answer as a crime.

Anyhow, Colonel, I am sure you are eminently qualified to review his book, from the points of view of intelligence, foreign policy, and IC management, and from your comments above would seem to have the motivation. I hope you do so.

Pat Lang Mod -> Keith Harbaugh , 7 hours ago
I will NEVER read or comment on his wretched book. He is and has always been a leftist who penalized straight, white men for being such when he was director of DIA without regard to talent or experience issuing a directive to HR that no such could be hired or promoted without his permission in each case. Brennan was a communist sympathizer but Clapper was a proponent of identity politics before it was fashionable. BTW, I am supposed to obey you?
Keith Harbaugh -> Pat Lang , 6 hours ago
"BTW, I am supposed to obey you?" Of course not. But if I refrained from mentioning that this was the second time I had suggested it, I would open myself up to criticism for not mentioning the earlier time. Either approach can be criticized.

I certainly respect your choice to not review the book, but I hope you will not feel me too much of a pain if I state that I hope, sometime in the future, you change your mind. Few, if any, people, have the insights into Clapper that you do.

Pat Lang Mod -> Keith Harbaugh , 5 hours ago
F--k Clapper.
Harlan Easley , a day ago
Another election stolen by the Democrats. A House of Representative seat in New Mexico. CNN, Fox, MSNBC declared the Republican the winner the night of the election. This is before 8,000 ballots out of 203,000 citizens showed up. Of course the Democrat Secretary of State informed the Republican candidate she lost after counting these 8,000 votes.

https://www.thegatewaypundi...

It's over as far as I'm concerned. The Democrat Party has decided to steal elections as they please. No objection from the Democrat Press. I loathe the Paul Ryan agenda but I hate the Democrat Party more for what they have done to this country. There will never be another election where either side will believe fair. Due to made up conspiracies such as Russian collusion and heaven forbid have to show your id to vote.

Hillary runs in 2020 and this is the nail in the coffin of this Republic. Florida is just a test run for her to steal that state.

blue peacock -> Harlan Easley , a day ago
Hillary has to first steal the primary. That may be easier said then done.
Bill H -> blue peacock , a day ago
She did it in 2016, and there was no negative outcome even when the theft was revealed and acknowledged. Why would it not be just as easy to do it again in 2020, given that the theft has the blessing of the Democratic Party?
PeterVE , a day ago
I hope their new best friends in the Democratic "Russia! Russia! Russia!" Party are happy with them. Why do they (if I remember correctly) still have their security clearances?
Pat Lang Mod -> PeterVE , a day ago
Most people retain security clearance after they leave government, so that the can do contract work for the government.
Mightypeon -> Pat Lang , 6 hours ago
My understanding is that leaving government in other countries may well result in a degradation (but iirc not a total revocation) of any held security clearance.

My impression, which is a guess and by no means authoritative or anything, is that the US tends to classify too much information (much of it would not or only barely merit being classified), and is then by necessity too lax in handing out clearances (as many clearance owning individuals are needed to handle all the classified data). This results in situations like Manning and Snowden, who iirc had some type of clearance and worked this to gain information considerably above their actual legitimate clearance. Such as "escalation" of clearance privileges will likely be far easier to achieve (and quite a bit harder to detect) then stealing secrets without any clearance at all.

Classification is a bit like defending, if one attempts to defend everything, by classifying everything, one may well end up defending nothing at all.

Pat Lang Mod -> Mightypeon , 6 hours ago
Ho Hum. Who cares what they do in other countries?

[Nov 14, 2018] When 'America First' Becomes Negotiable

Notable quotes:
"... [Don't miss Barndollar discussing the forever war, the military industrial complex, and military reform at our fifth annual foreign policy conference on November 15 in Washington, D.C. Full schedule and free registration here] ..."
"... Gil Barndollar is Director of Middle East Studies at the Center for the National Interest and Military Fellow-in-Residence at the Catholic University of America's Center for the Study of Statesmanship. He served as a U.S. Marine infantry officer from 2009 to 2016. ..."
Nov 14, 2018 | www.theamericanconservative.com

javascript:false

The most remarkable thing about Trump's foreign policy is how much it's like his predecessors'. By Gil BarndollarNovember 12, 2018

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Flickr As we near the halfway point of President Donald Trump's first term, U.S. foreign policy is being widely portrayed as off the rails. Yet when one looks past the Trumpian bluster, the predetermined media narrative, and the serial incompetence of an understaffed and often inexperienced administration, one finds a foreign policy agenda that differs far more in style than in substance from its predecessors'.

Donald Trump ran for president as a foreign policy Buchananite in all but name. Thoughhe made pro forma genuflections before the altars of primacy and American military supremacy, Trump repeatedly bemoaned America's disastrous interventions in the Greater Middle East. The South Carolina Republican presidential debate in February 2016 seemed like a watershed moment: Trump attacked George W. Bush's war leadership and proclaimed the Iraq war a disaster, a bold stance in a Republican Party that still refused to acknowledge reality more than a decade after the invasion. Despite being booed by some in the audience, Trump won the state easily and drove "Low Energy" Jeb Bush out of the race.

Candidate Trump offered a radical break with the U.S. foreign policy establishment. He said was NATO obsolete and warned of the danger of a third world war with Russia. He rightly declared the Libyan intervention to be another fiasco, and an illegal one at that. Hillary Clinton, by comparison, bragged about Muammar Gaddafi's death and compared Vladimir Putin to Hitler. Foreign policy realists and restrainers were understandably receptive to a Trump presidency, warts and all.

Much of Trump's rhetoric revolved around the undeniable fact that our allies are prospering under an American security umbrella they do not pay enough to support. He famously said that the United States should "take Iraq's oil" as payback for the American blood and treasure invested there. Trump seemed to sum up his view of America in the world when he told The Washington Post in March 2016: "We certainly can't afford to do this anymore."

Two years later, it is clear that "America First" was negotiable. U.S. troops aren't coming home, entangling alliances are expanding not contracting, and American client states are even more likely to drag us into war in the Middle East. When one pushes the media and the president's personality out of view, the most remarkable thing about Trump's foreign policy is how unremarkable it is. Beneath the rhetoric, American foreign policy these past two years has remained shackled to the traditional pillars of primacy, interventionism, and hubris.

Afghanistan: The war in Afghanistan offers the clearest evidence of business as usual in American foreign policy. The administration's brief attempt at unconventional thinking on Afghanistan was the risible Prince plan, whereby the U.S. would continue to prosecute the war but outsource it to a "modern East India Company." Erik Prince, formerly head of the Blackwater security firm and more recently a logistics provider in Africa and trainer of Chinese security services, proposed to turn Afghanistan over to a brigade of contractors and a "viceroy" with total command of the U.S. war effort. Though many of Prince's critiques of the current strategy are sound, mercenaries cannot fix a country with massive culture and governance problems. This idea was thankfully rejected. More creative thinking, like a real effort to work with Russia, China, and Pakistan to stabilize Afghanistan, or a withdrawal and a pledge to return in force if necessary, appears to have been unwelcome.

Instead, a vaunted new strategy offered little substantive change. U.S. forces in Afghanistan were increased by 4,000 troops, and the number of airstrikes shot up. But the situation there has only gotten worse. Casualties for both civilians and Afghan security forces have risen dramatically in the past year while Pakistan still shelters and abets the Taliban. The Afghan military is still not able to hold territory without U.S. assistance. In fact, independent assessors like the Long War Journal believe that nearly 60 percent of Afghanistan's districts are either under Taliban control or contested. The Department of Defense even briefly trotted out enemy body counts as a metric for progress before The New York Times rightly invoked the Vietnam War.

Donald Trump's Foreign Policy Goes Neocon Donald Trump's Foreign Policy Bait and Switch

Meanwhile, 17 years after 9/11, the Pentagon claims there are now upwards of 20 terror groups operating in Afghanistan, including what's left of ISIS, the heir to al Qaeda. For that reason, Americans are told we cannot leave.

Europe: Early in his presidency Trump briefly declined to endorse NATO's Article 5, provoking predictable hysteria on both sides of the Atlantic. A year later, he gave America's European allies a tongue-lashing in Brussels, calling them delinquent in their contributions to collective defense. Germany received special attention, with the president labeling Europe's largest economy a "captive of Russia." In Helsinki a few days later, Trump appeared to dismiss charges of Russian meddling in U.S. elections, igniting yet another firestorm of criticism. Back stateside, he concurred during an interview with Fox News's Tucker Carlson that starting a war over Montenegro, NATO's newest member, would be folly.

Yet when the dust finally settled, little had changed. The United States continues to support Ukraine in its war against Russian-backed separatists, even selling Kiev Javelin anti-tank missiles and other "lethal aid" that the more cautious President Barack Obama had refused to provide. Sanctions against Russia pile up, dampening that country's long-term economic development. European armies remain largely impotent while mindless NATO expansion continues apace. Despite what he said on Fox News, Trump and the GOP-controlled Senate had already signed off on the addition of Montenegro (and its tiny army of fewer than 2,000 soldiers) to NATO in 2017. Macedonia, another mouse that roared, is next. Poland has recently entertained the idea of a "Fort Trump" to permanently house U.S. troops on its soil -- yet another American tripwire force.

The Middle East: Iran remains the Trump administration's abiding foreign policy obsession. Here, at least, one cannot blame false advertising. The president was explicit about his plans to tear up Obama's Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) that limited Iran's nuclear ambitions, and make a better deal.

Once in office, the president's instincts on the regime were further fortified by the Saudis and Israelis, to whom he has clung more tightly than any previous administration. He surrounded himself with paid advocates of the Mujahedeen e-Khalq (MEK), a cult that is hated in Iran. Trump's lawyer and national security advisor, Rudy Giuliani and John Bolton respectively, have spoken on MEK's behalf, despite it being a U.S.-designated terrorist organization until 2012. Bolton now officially abjures regime change, but in July 2017 he promised an MEK gathering in Paris that they would celebrate together in Tehran in 2019.

[Don't miss Barndollar discussing the forever war, the military industrial complex, and military reform at our fifth annual foreign policy conference on November 15 in Washington, D.C. Full schedule and free registration here]

In May, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo presented Iran with a list of 12 demands that bring to mind Austria-Hungary and Serbia on the eve of World War I. Pompeo's conditions were not a starting point for negotiations or normalization; they were a call for surrender. The administration now believes it can crush Iran through economic sanctions and force it to the negotiating table.

Trump's Iran obsession has had baleful effects beyond the Persian Gulf. U.S. sanctions on Iran are damaging relations with a host of other nations by restricting their trade, even as the president extolled the primacy of sovereignty at the United Nations General Assembly in September.

Tethered to the increasingly reckless Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, the U.S. has continued to fuel, arm, and otherwise aid the Saudi-led coalition's brutal, stalemated war in Yemen -- a policy begun by Barack Obama.

In Syria and Iraq, the U.S. can take credit for a successful campaign against the Islamic State. Yet in the wake of this victory, U.S. troops seem to be staying put in Syria, despite a promise by Trump to pull them out earlier this year. Top officials announced in September that American forces will not be leaving Syria until the Iranians do. The risk of our presence in Syria dragging us into a war with either Iran or Russia is more real than ever.

In Israel, Trump has doubled down on support of Benjamin Netanyahu and the hardline Likud party. The U.S. finally moved its embassy to Jerusalem, as promised to pro-Israel donors during the campaign, and cut off all funding to the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA), the UN's Palestinian refugee agency. These moves only cemented a growing impression that Trump never planned to be an honest broker between the Israelis and the Palestinians. Many now believe that the peace process is dead.

North Korea: North Korea dominated headlines and fears of during 2017 and early 2018. While the president tweeted about "fire and fury" and "Little Rocket Man" Kim Jong-un, ultra-hawks in Washington pushed for a "bloody nose" preventive attack or even full-on regime change in North Korea. Thankfully, this was one case where Trump's status quo foreign policy prevented conflict. Both sides climbed down, conducted a historic summit in Singapore, and made over-hyped and easily reversible concessions. The president's personalization of diplomacy resulted in a victory, albeit in a verbal conflict that he had done much to create. Substantively, little has changed. North Korea will keep its nuclear weapons and ballistic missiles, American troops will remain in South Korea, and further negotiations are promised.

This is a good thing: a preventive war with North Korea would be the ultimate expression of Bismarck's line about "committing suicide out of fear of death." It appears that North Korea wants to slowly open itself to the world, a prospect that has South Korean businessmen quietly ecstatic and China relieved. Nonetheless, this is basically business as usual: North Korea threatens, is granted concessions, and the status quo is preserved. We have seen this before. We may be on the cusp of a permanent change in relations with North Korea, but the jury is still out.

China: There is one shining exception to the Trump administration's conventional foreign policy: China. Trump, unencumbered by free trade ideology, is challenging China's economic ascent. Gone is the mindless determinism of Clinton, Bush, and Obama, the evidence-free belief that free trade would somehow gradually end Chinese totalitarianism and mercantilism. The Chinese have never competed on a level playing field and as a result we have spent 20 years ceding American industry and supply chains to China. The hour is late, but there is still time for the United States to fundamentally reorient its relationship with China.

Despite the chimera of a 355-ship navy, America will not win or lose this fight in a Gotterdammerung in the South China Sea. The contest with China may be existential, but it is primarily an economic, technological, and political battle. For all of the deep structural problems in the U.S. economy, China has more to lose from a trade war right now than America does.

It is not clear, though, if we are in the midst of a trade war or a trade bluff. If it is the latter, we are likely to get a slightly better arrangement for U.S. businesses and then proceed towards the same endpoint. If we are fighting a real trade war, however, there is an opportunity to unwind "Chimerica" and bring manufacturing, if not necessarily jobs, home. It is an open question whether the president has the stomach for the economic and political pain that this will entail, as his oft-invoked roaring stock market tanks and Americans feel the bite of tariffs in their wallets.

As with most things this administration does, competence is also an enormous question mark. A trade war with China may be necessary and prudent. Simultaneously battling the Europeans and our NAFTA partners while conducting a trade war with China is neither. If we want to fundamentally reorder our economic relationship with China, for reasons of both national security and long-term prosperity, we need to do it in concert with the other liberal democracies, especially our North American neighbors. They could benefit greatly from a reorientation of American trade. A strategy is needed, not an impulse and a series of tactical tariffs.

How did America First so quickly become business as usual, China excepted? Diehard Trumpists are inclined to defend the president's foreign policy U-turns by painting him as a prisoner of his own administration, surrounded by conventional Republicans who subvert his non-interventionist instincts. The writing was on the wall immediately, they claim, as a trio of generals -- John Kelly, James Mattis, and H. R. McMaster -- were chosen to drive national security policy. As veterans of Iraq and Afghanistan, all three were unlikely to support any radical reexamination of America's place in the world. Steve Bannon, who would and did support such a change, was forced out of the White House within a year.

Personnel is policy, as the cliché goes, and the administration's foreign policy team is dominated by men who are conventional internationalists at best, unrepentant neoconservatives at worst. Rex Tillerson presided over a State Department in unprecedented disarray and often found himself focused on limiting the damage of the president's bombast. His successor has been a reliable agent of foreign policy orthodoxy, dutifully dealing with North Korea on the one hand and threatening Iran on the other.

There is undoubtedly something to the narrative of internal betrayal, as Bob Woodward's Fear and the recent anonymous New York Times editorial attest. America may not have a true Deep State, but Trump's personality and some of his policies have provoked unprecedented resistance from within government bureaucracies and even from his own political appointees. Realigning American foreign policy in the face of an obdurate establishment was always going to be a significant challenge. Succeeding in this task without a united team is likely impossible.

But this is not an entirely tenable defense. These are men the president chose, and they are doing his bidding, inasmuch as he knows and communicates what that is. The bench of realists and non-interventionists may be small, but the president has put some of the worst warmongers in Washington into positions of real power and influence.

So those who believe in foreign policy realism and restraint are left with the worst of both worlds: a presidency that espouses an America First agenda but then proceeds to sabotage support for these policies through reckless rhetoric, incompetent implementation, and a refusal to carry out anything approaching a thoughtful, non-interventionist strategy.

Perhaps the next two years will see a drastic change in American foreign policy. Hope springs eternal -- but there is scant reason for anything more than hope.

Gil Barndollar is Director of Middle East Studies at the Center for the National Interest and Military Fellow-in-Residence at the Catholic University of America's Center for the Study of Statesmanship. He served as a U.S. Marine infantry officer from 2009 to 2016.

[Nov 14, 2018] The Short War With Gaza Exposed Israel s Weakness by Laguerre

Notable quotes:
"... Israel's newly won "friends" in the leadership of Saudi Arabia and the UAE proved to be unstable and of little value. ..."
"... The Israeli army is cr*p these days, only capable of shooting down unarmed Palestinians. No-one wants to spend their lives fighting, ready to go off to war at any moment, rather than living normal Western lives. ..."
"... The Zionists politically unified the Gaza defense factions for the first time, which is a very important development that needed to occur long ago. ..."
"... If the 1973 War were to be waged again using today's forces, it's likely Zionistan would lose. The Cabinet infighting mirrors the growing divide within Zionistan's polity. Unfortunately, that divide doesn't seem to be producing an alternative political party that's anti-Apartheid and favors a One State solution. Hard to argue with b's concluding assessment. ..."
"... This appears to be a planted explosive after the bus was emptied out -- except for the driver who was sacrificed. It certainly does not look like a Kornet as shown in this video. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-ePvNlfrxfw ..."
"... The US and Israel are doing their best to encourage a multi-polar world able to oppose their reckless actions, although there's still a long way to go. The sooner both nations start to behave in a more circumspect manner, the safer the world will be. ..."
"... I have often wondered how does the Israeli economy stay afloat ..."
"... Never has Israel been so powerful and dominant and never has Israel's power seemed so impotent. Israel's nuclear weapons may deter other countries but they are useless against Palestinians unless Israel really wants to launch such weapons against itself. ..."
"... What will become of Israel? How will the region deal with it as, over time, it is increasingly defeated and forced to supply proofs that it deserves to exist? What answer will it make, as it throws away all semblance of community? ..."
"... I see Trump as clearly representative of the global elite that are having to kill their current empire host without being certain of how they can live with or make China's socialism with a Chinese face be controlled by an ongoing world of global private finance. ..."
"... Trump is their public face deal maker and I will agree with Peter AU 1 that Kissinger is the global elite's behind the scenes deal maker. I have written here before that Trump will default on US debt before he is out of office, IMO. ..."
"... Can the global elite pressure the world's nations into their continued existence as the jackboot of global finance? Despite the wild and crazy of grifter Donald Trump I still believe that reason is about to triumph over faith in the hallowed halls of global finance......and Israel is the proxy front for that lost faith in monotheistic religions with better than others value, bias and use of victimization. ..."
Nov 13, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

Last week a ceasefire was agreed upon between Palestinian factions in Gaza and Israel:

The aim of the change, in a plan mediated by Egypt and with money supplied by Qatar, is to provide much-needed relief for Gaza, restore calm on the Israeli side of the border and avert another war.

On Sunday night Israeli special forces broke the ceasefire by invading Gaza under disguise. Such incursions happen quite often but are usually left unreported. The invaders wore civilian clothing and some were cloaked as women. Their cars arrived at the house of a local Qassam commander but suspicious guards held them up. A firefight ensued in which 7 Palestinians and 1 Israeli officer were killed. It is not clear what the intent of the Israeli raid was. A car left behind held what appeared to be surveillance equipment. The intruders fled back to Israel.

It is likely that rivalry within the Israeli government was behind this provocation:

[T]he perception that Israel, by allowing the fuel and cash shipments into Gaza, was paying off Hamas set off acrimonious wrangling between two rival right-wing members of Israel's security cabinet.

Earlier Sunday, Education Minister Naftali Bennett called the cash infusion "protection money." Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman accused Mr. Bennett of having supported such payments and of having opposed in recent weeks the more aggressive military reprisals against Hamas that Mr. Lieberman favored.
...
By night's end Mr. Netanyahu had cut short his trip [to Paris] and was flying back to Israel in response to the Gaza hostilities.

Did Lieberman order the incursion to undercut Netanyahoo ceasefire and his rival Bennet?


Map via SouthFront.org - bigger

The breach of the ceasefire by Israel set off another round of tit for tat strikes. A commando unit of Hamas' Qassam brigade launched an attack against a bus that had carried Israeli soldiers to the border. To avoid further escalation the shooter waited until the soldiers were out of the way before hitting it. Only the driver was injured. Then the Israeli air force destroyed the al-Aqsa TV station in Gaza city after notifying the Palestinians of its intent. It also damaged a university building. Rocket volleys from Gaza followed and the Israeli air-force hit several buildings. After 48 hours the ceasefire was renewed.

During the conflict the Palestinian side demonstrated a series of new capabilities:

It was Israel that practically begged to return to the ceasefire . Egypt led the negotiations:

Earlier Tuesday, the Political-Security Cabinet meeting that convened following the escalation in the south came to a halt after seven hours. After hearing the army's and the security establishment's assessments, the cabinet instructed the IDF to continue to operate in Gaza as necessary.

All the officials from the defense establishment who participated in the cabinet meeting -- IDF chief of staff, the head of Military Intelligence, the head of the Shin Bet, the head of the Mossad, and the head of the NSC -- supported the Egyptian request for a cease-fire .
...
" If we had intensified the attacks, rockets would have been fired at Tel Aviv ," senior cabinet officials said.

Since 15:30 local time today the situation is again quiet and calm. But the squabbling within the Israeli cabinet immediately resumed:

All the ministers -- including Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman and Minister Naftali Bennett -- did not object to a cease fire.

Following this report, the Defense Ministry said that Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman's support of a cease-fire deal were "fake news." The statement said that the Defense Minister's position was consistent and had not changed. Ministers Naftali Bennett, Ayelet Shaked and Ze'ev Elkin also said they did not support a cease-fire deal with Hamas.

In total 13 people were killed in Gaza and at least 2 on the Israeli side. A Hamas spokesperson accused Lieberman of being responsible for the breach of the ceasefire and demanded that Netanyahoo fires him.

The short conflict demonstrated that:

For decades the Zionist entity was able to attack its neighbors as it pleased. That changed. It no longer dares to step into Lebanon for fear of Hezbullah's reprisal. Syria's western airspace is closed for Israel thanks to the new S-300PMU2 air defense Russia delivered to the Syrian army. Israeli special forces botched their incursion into Gaza and the Iron Dome missile defense proved to be to faulty to protect Zionist settlements. The resistance in Gaza has new capabilities and surprises for Israel should it again attack.

Israel's newly won "friends" in the leadership of Saudi Arabia and the UAE proved to be unstable and of little value. The Boycott, divest and sanctions movement against the self declared apartheid state has undermined its image . Its lobby has been exposed . Its budget deficit is too high .

The short conflict in Gaza only demonstrated that Israel is weak and that its downward trend continues.

Posted by b on November 13, 2018 at 02:52 PM | Permalink

Comments The Israeli army is cr*p these days, only capable of shooting down unarmed Palestinians. No-one wants to spend their lives fighting, ready to go off to war at any moment, rather than living normal Western lives. That probably had something to do with the failure of the original raid - they left behind their (specially equipped) car, did they? Only the air force is any good, and, lo and behold, it had to be brought in to recover the situation.

Pat Lang is right on this one.


LJ , Nov 13, 2018 3:24:00 PM | link

This appears to be a planted explosive after the bus was emptied out -- except for the driver who was sacrificed. It certainly does not look like a Kornet as shown in this video.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-ePvNlfrxfw
psychohistorian , Nov 13, 2018 3:56:04 PM | link
Thanks for the journalism not found anywhere else b

The West house of cards is self destructing before our eyes. It is way past time, IMO I just hope that global public finance comes with the change.

Sadness , Nov 13, 2018 4:01:06 PM | link
The sooner Israel returns to being Palestine, where Jewish folks who want to live in the ME can do so in peace with their neighbours, the better. The violent murderous destructive settler ethnics please go home, ta.
In MC doo , Nov 13, 2018 4:07:36 PM | link
The hornet attack on the bus is in all likelyhood faked, around 26 seconds in your tube video at least 8 IDF are at the front of the bus chatting, at around 46 seconds they are gone. We hear the sound of the missile being fired but are unable to see it tracking the target as it moves in.
john , Nov 13, 2018 4:18:35 PM | link
very nice perspective, b, very good. thanks. and for all those asshats out there who think that uncle sam is israel's bitch, well. live and learn.
CarlD , Nov 13, 2018 4:26:16 PM | link
@2

This Video is probably and most assuredly a Houthi destruction of a SA tank. It has nothing to do with the Israeli bus.

bjd , Nov 13, 2018 4:26:47 PM | link
If fear for Tel Aviv was a motivation, an additional conclusion might be the Israeli's have little real faith in their Iron Dome -- no?
Where is Iran in this story, that Lieberman is so keen on?
Yonatan , Nov 13, 2018 4:28:10 PM | link
LJ @2.

There is a difference. The cameraman in the Abrams shot is close to the launcher and to the line of fire so the ATGM rocket motor exhaust is clearly visible. In the IDF shot, the cameraman could be well away from the launch, even at right angles to its line of flight, totally hiding the rocket motor. That said, it would be even more gutsy to have placed an IED where the IDF was likely to gather and much cheaper. The ATGMs are more valuable against IDF armor. $1 million of US taxpayer money going up in smoke just like that.

https://pbs.twimg.com/media/Dr0LWUUXgAAVuBD.jpg

Hamas - bringing the US closer to bankruptcy $10 bottle rocket by $10 bottle rocket.

karlof1 , Nov 13, 2018 4:37:36 PM | link
The Zionists politically unified the Gaza defense factions for the first time, which is a very important development that needed to occur long ago. The Zionist's response to perform a War Crime fits their behavioral norm to a Tee.

If the 1973 War were to be waged again using today's forces, it's likely Zionistan would lose. The Cabinet infighting mirrors the growing divide within Zionistan's polity. Unfortunately, that divide doesn't seem to be producing an alternative political party that's anti-Apartheid and favors a One State solution. Hard to argue with b's concluding assessment.

frances , Nov 13, 2018 5:11:47 PM | link
reply to

This appears to be a planted explosive after the bus was emptied out -- except for the driver who was sacrificed. It certainly does not look like a Kornet as shown in this video. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-ePvNlfrxfw

Posted by: LJ | Nov 13, 2018 3:24:00 PM | 2
I agree, I think this was an Israeli False Flag to justify an invasion and I agree it is a bomb beneath the bus. A Kornet has a distinctive undulating pattern and leaves a smoke trail, for example: here is what a Kornet looks like hitting something: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y5xKCzdhAC8

james , Nov 13, 2018 5:19:49 PM | link
thanks b... it sounds like none of the Israeli politicians want to own up to wanting a ceasefire.. why is that? is the idea of projecting strength and aggressiveness the only posture Israel can take for the majority Israel religious orthodox voting public??

as b notes, Israel's situation is becoming more difficult for a number of reasons.. i see on mondoweiss, another article that highlights the continuation of policies that will come back to bite Israel in the ass.. A familiar invasion: Settlers take another mountain top, soldiers follow, and Palestinians demonstrate for their rights...

@6 john... i am curious... it sure looks to me like the usa is israels bitch... it's not just usa either.. one could include canada, australia, uk and all the western poodles too... how does this event appear to make it look any different to you? thanks..

worldblee , Nov 13, 2018 5:22:55 PM | link
The US and Israel are doing their best to encourage a multi-polar world able to oppose their reckless actions, although there's still a long way to go. The sooner both nations start to behave in a more circumspect manner, the safer the world will be.
LJ , Nov 13, 2018 6:36:01 PM | link
@12 Yes, Francis. I agree. It's a bad fake, too.
steve , Nov 13, 2018 7:31:56 PM | link
I have often wondered how does the Israeli economy stay afloat. I am on the side of Israel. However it seems increasingly a losing side. To survive they have had to adopt increasingly harsh and embarrassing measures. The only way to achieve victory is to ethnically cleanse Arabs from the Middle East. The Heart of Darkness Rabbit Bomb Blues.
PeacefulProsperity , Nov 13, 2018 8:13:21 PM | link
And the carnage has been sponsored by the Hollyweird scum: Palestinians critical of Hollywood stars donating $60 million to support Israeli army terror
PeacefulProsperity , Nov 13, 2018 8:14:44 PM | link
Hollyweird anti-Trmp scum, that is.
james , Nov 13, 2018 8:21:21 PM | link
@19 pp.. trump is no different.. hollywood and trump - 2 sides of the same coin.. both subservient to Israel..
sejomoje , Nov 13, 2018 8:34:01 PM | link
#18 - Gerard Butler hosted that event. His Malibu(?) house was just burned to the frame. Coincidence? I think not. He is all over social media whining about it and people are actually calling him out. Maybe there's some hope for us after all.
ADKC , Nov 13, 2018 8:54:57 PM | link
Adam & Steve @16 & @17

Palestinians already know that Israel plans a genocide. Palestinians know that they will not be helped by the west or any other country. Palestinians know that they have no voice and no way of countering the Israeli lobby. But where has this success really got you and Israel?

I suggest that you are pursuing a path that means doom for both Palestinian and Israeli. You imagine that you can get rid of Palestinians but lack the commonsense to see that this is impossible. You are building a future of (ever more) death and destruction.

There is another option (which you won't be interested in) and that is to change Israel from an apartheid state and grant equality to Palestinians (including the right of return and restitution of property).

That you two could post such loathsome views indicates that you are completely unaware that you are staring into an abyss that will consume both Palestinian and Israeli.

Never has Israel been so powerful and dominant and never has Israel's power seemed so impotent. Israel's nuclear weapons may deter other countries but they are useless against Palestinians unless Israel really wants to launch such weapons against itself.

You need to wake up to the idea that Palestinian and Israeli might have a future together and consider that the path you are following will bring a great tragedy to both sides.

Kiza , Nov 13, 2018 9:02:21 PM | link
@ karlof1 10

My thoughts were identical - the single biggest development is the exhibited unity among the Palestinians. It does not spell good for the expansionist apartheid bankrupt state (just like all its bankrupt Western bitches).

I also support renaming Gaza into Auschwitz, that was a brilliantly symbolic idea.

ADKC , Nov 13, 2018 9:22:20 PM | link
I am against renaming Gaza as Auschwitz. It is a transparent attempt to appeal to western/European sensitivities (which will not work), will be nothing more than a publicity stunt, and is a denial of the unique Palestinian experience.

Probably more people in the world know of Gaza than they do of Auschwitz.

Gaza is, and should remain, Gaza.

Grieved , Nov 13, 2018 9:57:42 PM | link
@22 ADKC

Thank you for putting that into words. The two entities are joined in an intimate embrace of destiny from which it seems that no single side can emerge alone. How futile that Israel cannot see that its best chance to emerge as a nation, or at least as a people, is now, and that every day it seeks to further reduce Palestine it furthers its own diminishing.

What will become of Israel? How will the region deal with it as, over time, it is increasingly defeated and forced to supply proofs that it deserves to exist? What answer will it make, as it throws away all semblance of community?

Hoarsewhisperer , Nov 13, 2018 10:19:32 PM | link
@19 pp.. trump is no different.. hollywood and trump - 2 sides of the same coin.. both subservient to israel..
Posted by: james | Nov 13, 2018 8:21:21 PM | 20

Well that's wrong. Trump can read the Zio-Jews like a book. They're so-o predictably evil and stupid. His unlawful and MEANINGLESS recognition of Jerusalem as the capital of "Israel" encouraged them to put their mass-murdering skills on display while the civilized world watched in horror and revulsion.

As b points out, Lebanon has long been too dangerous for their peculiarly wussy brand of courage, Syria is now off-limits, and now the Powerless Palestinians have made them re-think their aggressive idiocy. The fact that they've always been their own worst enemy is rapidly coming home to roost...

Peter AU 1 , Nov 13, 2018 11:17:18 PM | link
Hoarsewhisperer 27

Israel is the land of Ivanka and Kissinger. I think US vetos at the UNSC will continue. US embassy is now at Jerusalem and Trump has declared it the capital of Israel.

james , Nov 13, 2018 11:17:22 PM | link

... ... ...

@27 hw... we have to disagree then... israels mass-murdering skills have been on display prior to and during trumps position.. nothing has changed with regard to Israel's attitude, trump or no trump.. and frankly trump could give a shit.. The money continues to flow to Israel and usa subservience continues... i wish it was different, but i am not into some pipe dream in thinking trump has made any difference.. he hasn't.. you have much greater faith in trump then i..

Zachary Smith , Nov 13, 2018 11:57:39 PM | link
I'm about 6,000 miles away from the current excitement, and can't read any of the languages. So I've got to rely on second and third hand reports of everything . What I'm hearing through those slender grapevines is that there are bitter faction fights within the government of the apartheid Jewish State. Another factor is that none of the 'leaders' known to me are exactly oozing competence. When your major propaganda outlet starts whining about the stupidity, things aren't going well.
1) The S-300 air defense missiles Russia has deployed to Syria. Netanyahu's brief chat with President Vladimir Putin in Paris on Sunday yielded no concurrence for the resumption of Israeli air strikes against Iran. It is now up to him to decide whether to take this as a Russian embargo on Israel overflights, or to go ahead and risk resuming those air strikes. In the worst case, the Israeli air force might have to operate on two fronts: Syria and Gaza.

No, that's not the worst case. Dozens of Russian cruise missiles skimming the treetops while heading for the air and naval bases of the Apartheid State is worse than that. Frankly, I doubt if the murderous and thieving little nation is capable of overcoming both the jamming and the S-300 systems. But what do I know? - if they manage to do it without killing any Russians, the Syrians will probably be reinforced with even heavier air defenses. Right now Syria is a lose/lose proposition.

2) Israel has tied its hands with an ultimatum to Beirut to shut down Iran's workshops in Lebanon for adding precision-guidance to Hizballah's surface missiles, or else face Israeli attacks to destroy them. There was no date on the ultimatum. But to carry it through, every ounce of Israel's air force capabilities will be required. The question is how did Israel's policy-makers failed to avoid a situation which paralyses its ability to operate against strategic foes in Syria and Lebanon?
Notice the despair. Who on earth was running his mouth with a promise to destroy those Hezbollah shops? Yet even that's a losing proposition, for Hezbollah is doubtlessly running many fakes and decoys, and keeping everything on such a small scale they'll be barely scratched, if touched at all. But could the pilots of the apartheid Jewish State do even this? I ask because I don't know the range of those Russian jamming devices. Hezbollah has every opportunity to set an ambush for incoming aircraft attacks. The F-35 may be low visibility in terms of radar, but it represents an enormous infra-red beacon. There are anti-air missiles in existence which are optimized for IR.

The final wild card is the Trumpster. He has been mighty erratic of late, and while he might do something wild and crazy, could the Jewish State rely on whatever-it-is he might do helping them? Could be just the opposite.

Is Trump Cracking Up? (Updated)

psychohistorian , Nov 14, 2018 12:44:47 AM | link
@ Grieved with the internet interaction insight and wisdom....thanks and hope many read and understand your words.

@ Zachary Smith with the comment and question about Trump.

I see Trump as clearly representative of the global elite that are having to kill their current empire host without being certain of how they can live with or make China's socialism with a Chinese face be controlled by an ongoing world of global private finance.

Trump is their public face deal maker and I will agree with Peter AU 1 that Kissinger is the global elite's behind the scenes deal maker. I have written here before that Trump will default on US debt before he is out of office, IMO.

Can the global elite pressure the world's nations into their continued existence as the jackboot of global finance? Despite the wild and crazy of grifter Donald Trump I still believe that reason is about to triumph over faith in the hallowed halls of global finance......and Israel is the proxy front for that lost faith in monotheistic religions with better than others value, bias and use of victimization.

For me the only question is how long will the transition take and how ugly will it be?

[Nov 14, 2018] Bolton Vows to 'Squeeze' Iran, Escalating Sanctions - News From by Jason Ditz

If this is Trump policy, then Trump is 100% pure neocon. It took just three months for the Deep state to turn him.
Notable quotes:
"... Bolton shrugged off the reality that Iran is still doing business internationally, saying that he believes Iran is "under real pressure" from the sanctions, and that he's determined to see it keep getting worse. ..."
Nov 13, 2018 | news.antiwar.com

Says Europe will be forced to accept US demands

With the newly reimposed US sanctions against Iran having little to no perceivable economic impact, national security adviser John Bolton is talking up his plans to continue to escalate the sanctions track, saying he will " squeeze Iran until the pips squeak ."

Bolton shrugged off the reality that Iran is still doing business internationally, saying that he believes Iran is "under real pressure" from the sanctions, and that he's determined to see it keep getting worse.

Bolton went on to predict that the European efforts to keep trading with Iran would ultimately fail. He said the Europeans are going through the six stages of grief , and would ultimately led to European acceptance of the US demands.

Either way, Bolton's position is that the US strategy will continue to be imposing new sanctions on Iran going forward. It's not clear what the end game is, beyond just damaging Iran.

[Nov 12, 2018] Facebook, Google, and Microsoft Use Design To Trick You Into Handing Over Your Data, Report Warns

Notable quotes:
"... There's no doubt about Google tracking. At least DuckDuckGo has a stated policy of not tracking, and is an alternative to the Google Goliath. ..."
Nov 12, 2018 | tech.slashdot.org

An anonymous reader quotes a report from Gizmodo: A study from the Norwegian Consumer Council dug into the underhanded tactics used by Microsoft, Facebook, and Google to collect user data . "The findings include privacy intrusive default settings, misleading wording, giving users an illusion of control, hiding away privacy-friendly choices, take-it-or-leave-it choices, and choice architectures where choosing the privacy friendly option requires more effort for the users," states the report , which includes images and examples of confusing design choices and strangely worded statements involving the collection and use of personal data.

Google makes opting out of personalized ads more of a chore than it needs to be and uses multiple pages of text, unclear design language, and, as described by the report, "hidden defaults" to push users toward the company's desired action. "If the user tried to turn the setting off, a popup window appeared explaining what happens if Ads Personalization is turned off, and asked users to reaffirm their choice," the report explained. "There was no explanation about the possible benefits of turning off Ads Personalization, or negative sides of leaving it turned on." Those who wish to completely avoid personalized ads must traverse multiple menus, making that "I agree" option seem like the lesser of two evils. In Windows 10, if a user wants to opt out of "tailored experiences with diagnostic data," they have to click a dimmed lightbulb, while the symbol for opting in is a brightly shining bulb, says the report.

Another example has to do with Facebook. The social media site makes the "Agree and continue" option much more appealing and less intimidating than the grey "Manage Data Settings" option. The report says the company-suggested option is the easiest to use. "This 'easy road' consisted of four clicks to get through the process, which entailed accepting personalized ads from third parties and the use of face recognition. In contrast, users who wanted to limit data collection and use had to go through 13 clicks."

dromgodis ( 4533247 ) writes: on Thursday June 28, 2018 @02:50AM ( #56858014 )

Re:And if you optout it just makes you even more o ( Score: 5 , Informative)

You seem to be keeping your gaze too low. You are not just a target for buying stuff; you are also a target for modifying your opinion and behaviour in politics and other questions.

You can be targeted through other vectors than traditional ads, e.g. notification flows, news flows, ads-or-propaganda-disguised-as-news, product placement, insurance company policies, employability, police knocking on your door, ...

As an extreme, think China. The view we outsiders get is that if they collect the wrong data about you, they will *target* you in a way that no ad-blocker will stop.

This should not be a surprise ( Score: 3 , Insightful) by Anonymous Coward writes: on Wednesday June 27, 2018 @11:44PM ( #56857560 )

This info has been out there for years yet no one is listening and/or cares. The mantra of people seems to be "it's free" so why not. I have long ago seen this coming. Use Fedora Linux or Debian. Use an iPhone over Android despite Apple having some issues. Use P2P apps in lieu of things like Skype. Own your own domain and use that for email. It's cheap and you have control of your user name and domain name. Tie that domain name to a privacy-respecting service like Fastmail.

Don't use spy devices like Alexa or Google Home. These exist not to help you but to harvest your data 24/7. Roll your own solutions, especially if you're technical or in IT. Use your own skills. Run a Pi-hole, block and defund the ad companies and tracking companies. Like drugs, just say no...

This should not be a surprise ( Score: 3 , Insightful) by Anonymous Coward writes: on Wednesday June 27, 2018 @11:44PM ( #56857560 )

This info has been out there for years yet no one is listening and/or cares. The mantra of people seems to be "it's free" so why not. I have long ago seen this coming. Use Fedora Linux or Debian. Use an iPhone over Android despite Apple having some issues. Use P2P apps in lieu of things like Skype. Own your own domain and use that for email. It's cheap and you have control of your user name and domain name. Tie that domain name to a privacy-respecting service like Fastmail.

Don't use spy devices like Alexa or Google Home. These exist not to help you but to harvest your data 24/7. Roll your own solutions, especially if you're technical or in IT. Use your own skills. Run a Pi-hole, block and defund the ad companies and tracking companies. Like drugs, just say no...

Never attribute to malice ( Score: 3 ) by thegarbz ( 1787294 ) writes: on Thursday June 28, 2018 @03:40AM ( #56858106 )

what can be attributed to three companies who are some of the worst offenders of screwing up general UI design.

Who the hell cares about my privacy settings when I can no longer safely use maps for navigation due to its shitty settings of minimising into a useless picture in picture everytime there's a hiccup on my phone and has removed the option to force audio output throught the speaker meaning I can't hear it with bluetooth on either.

Who the hell cares about privacy settings on a website that makes it borderline impossible to easily scroll through past messages, or whose mobile app doesn't let you post pictures because it ends up in a select picture loop.

And as for Microsoft, one word... err two words: Start Menu *raises middle finger*

triffid_98 ( 899609 ) writes: on Thursday June 28, 2018 @02:29AM ( #56857984 )
Re: Gee, what a surprise ... ( Score: 5 , Insightful)

While Facebook is avoidable good luck avoiding Microsoft and Google if you're not a member of the zombie Steve Jobs fan club...that said, whatever they extract is far less damaging than the Equifax breach, after that I'd say cell phone carriers and all of the historical gps data they share with third parties without your consent. Just like the instigators of the 2008 global financial meltdown the penalties = zero dollars.

Raenex ( 947668 ) writes: on Thursday June 28, 2018 @06:28AM ( #56858434 )
Re: Alternatives ( Score: 4 , Insightful)

You sound like a Google employee. There's no doubt about Google tracking. At least DuckDuckGo has a stated policy of not tracking, and is an alternative to the Google Goliath.

[Nov 12, 2018] The Democratic Party long ago earned the designation graveyard of social protest movements, and for good reason

Highly recommended!
The Democrats are politically responsible for the rise of Trump.
Notable quotes:
"... As Obama said following Trump's election, the Democrats and Republicans are "on the same team" and their differences amount to an "intramural scrimmage." They are on the team of, and owned lock stock and barrel by, the American corporate-financial oligarchy, personified by Trump. ..."
"... The Democrats are, moreover, politically responsible for the rise of Trump. The Obama administration paved the way for Trump by implementing the pro-corporate (Wall Street bailout), pro-war (Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya, Syria, drone killings) and anti-democratic (mass surveillance, persecution of Snowden, Assange, Manning) policies that Trump is continuing and intensifying. And by breaking all his election promises and carrying out austerity policies against the working class, Obama enabled the billionaire gangster Trump to make an appeal to sections of workers devastated by deindustrialization, presenting himself as the anti-establishment spokesman for the "forgotten man." ..."
"... This was compounded by the right-wing Clinton candidacy, which exuded contempt for the working class and appealed for support to the military and CIA and wealthy middle-class layers obsessed with identity politics. Sanders' endorsement of Clinton gave Trump an open field to exploit discontent among impoverished social layers. ..."
Nov 02, 2018 | www.wsws.org

Pelosi's deputy in the House, Steny Hoyer, sums up the right-wing policies of the Democrats, declaring: "His [Trump's] objectives are objectives that we share. If he really means that, then there is an opening for us to work together."

So much for the moral imperative of voting for the Democrats to stop Trump! As Obama said following Trump's election, the Democrats and Republicans are "on the same team" and their differences amount to an "intramural scrimmage." They are on the team of, and owned lock stock and barrel by, the American corporate-financial oligarchy, personified by Trump.

The Democrats are, moreover, politically responsible for the rise of Trump. The Obama administration paved the way for Trump by implementing the pro-corporate (Wall Street bailout), pro-war (Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya, Syria, drone killings) and anti-democratic (mass surveillance, persecution of Snowden, Assange, Manning) policies that Trump is continuing and intensifying. And by breaking all his election promises and carrying out austerity policies against the working class, Obama enabled the billionaire gangster Trump to make an appeal to sections of workers devastated by deindustrialization, presenting himself as the anti-establishment spokesman for the "forgotten man."

This was compounded by the right-wing Clinton candidacy, which exuded contempt for the working class and appealed for support to the military and CIA and wealthy middle-class layers obsessed with identity politics. Sanders' endorsement of Clinton gave Trump an open field to exploit discontent among impoverished social layers.

The same process is taking place internationally. While strikes and other expressions of working class opposition are growing and broad masses are moving to the left, the right-wing policies of supposedly "left" establishment parties are enabling far-right and neo-fascist forces to gain influence and power in countries ranging from Germany, Italy, Hungary and Poland to Brazil.

As for Gay's injunction to vote "pragmatically," this is a crude promotion of the bankrupt politics that are brought forward in every election to keep workers tied to the capitalist two-party system. "You have only two choices. That is the reality, whether you like it or not." And again and again, in the name of "practicality," the most unrealistic and impractical policy is promoted -- supporting a party that represents the class that is oppressing and exploiting you! The result is precisely the disastrous situation working people and youth face today -- falling wages, no job security, growing repression and the mounting threat of world war.

The Democratic Party long ago earned the designation "graveyard of social protest movements," and for good reason. From the Populist movement of the late 19th century, to the semi-insurrectional industrial union movement of the 1930s, to the civil rights movement of the 1950s and 1960s, to the mass anti-war protest movements of the 1960s and the eruption of international protests against the Iraq War in the early 2000s -- every movement against the depredations of American capitalism has been aborted and strangled by being channeled behind the Democratic Party.

[Nov 12, 2018] When dual citizenship becomes conflict of interest by L. Michael Hager

Notable quotes:
"... Afroyim v. Rusk ..."
"... Yet the media and government watchdog organizations have largely ignored the potential conflict of interest inherent in dual citizenship. Why the neglect of this issue? Shouldn't members of Congress (and federal judges and executive branch officials) at least be required to disclose their citizenship in another country? ..."
"... Even if our legal system continues to allow dual citizens to serve in high positions of the U.S. government, it should require them to recuse themselves from participating in decisions or policy debates that relate to their second country. ..."
Nov 12, 2018 | thehill.com

The Biblical injunction that "No one can serve two masters" (Matthew 6:24) doesn't apply to nations. Almost half of the world's countries, including the U.S., recognize dual citizenship-- even when they don't encourage it for the complicated legal issues it often raises.

For example, one who obeys a requirement to give allegiance to a country or votes in a foreign election may be regarded as having renounced citizenship in the other country. What happens when the legal claims of one country conflict with those of the second country? Which of the two countries has an obligation to assist a dual national in distress?

Until the Supreme Court decided otherwise in the 1967 case of Afroyim v. Rusk , a U.S. citizen who voted in a political election in a foreign state would forfeit his or her U.S. citizenship. From that point on, dual citizens have maintained their right to vote and hold public office without penalty.

Anyone can become a dual citizen, even members of Congress, high court judges and top officials of the executive branch. There's no law or regulation against it. Nor are they required to disclose such dual citizenship.

So what's the problem?

For most dual citizens, having the benefits of citizenship in two countries (including expedited immigration) outweigh the costs (which may include tax obligations to both countries).

Yet dual citizenship in the United States poses a hitherto unappreciated issue for policy-level members of the legislative, executive and judicial branches. The divided national loyalties of dual citizens can create real or apparent conflicts of interest when such legislators, judges or senior officials make or speak out on policies that relate to their second country.

The potential damage to our democracy is the greater when such potential conflicts of interest are concealed in undisclosed dual citizenship.

Current entries on the Internet contain a number of undocumented assertions as to which members of Congress and senior officers are dual citizens. Without reliable data, however, Americans can only speculate on which senators and representatives may have divided national loyalties.

The lack of transparency regarding citizenship erodes trust in government, raising credibility doubts where there should be none, and allowing some apparent conflicts of interest to continue undetected.

When a senator, representative or senior U.S. official speaks out, submits bills or determines policy on an issue of importance to a foreign country of which that member or official (or judge) has the tie of citizenship, their constituents and the U.S. public at large should at least be able to assess whether such views or actions are influenced by the divided loyalty.

Since they don't involve national loyalty, religion and ethnicity seldom raise conflict issues. Moreover, they are generally matters of public record.

By contrast, dual citizenship creates conflict of interest through divided loyalties. Thus it would seem reasonable to require that dual citizen members of Congress, the judiciary and the executive be required to renounce citizenship in another country as a condition of public service.

Both Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) and former Rep. Michelle Bachman (R-Minn.) recently received wide press coverage when they renounced their Canadian and Swiss nationalities, respectively.

Yet the media and government watchdog organizations have largely ignored the potential conflict of interest inherent in dual citizenship. Why the neglect of this issue? Shouldn't members of Congress (and federal judges and executive branch officials) at least be required to disclose their citizenship in another country?

Even if our legal system continues to allow dual citizens to serve in high positions of the U.S. government, it should require them to recuse themselves from participating in decisions or policy debates that relate to their second country.

[Nov 12, 2018] The backstory behind Diane Rehm's question to Bernie Sanders on dual Israeli citizenship

Notable quotes:
"... If an American citizen applies for foreign citizenship voluntarily, they "may lose U.S. nationality," if there is evidence, through their statements or conduct, that they intend to give up their U.S. citizenship. ..."
Nov 12, 2018 | www.politifact.com

Applying for citizenship under the Law of Return "is a formal procedure which you could expect normally to take a number of months except under emergency conditions," said Yoram Hazony, president of the the Herzl Institute, a Jerusalem think tank. "There is no such thing as receiving Israeli citizenship without submitting a formal request to the Israeli government."

... ... ...

It's also worth noting that the U.S. government doesn't look especially kindly on dual citizenship. The United States "recognizes that dual nationality exists but does not encourage it as a matter of policy because of the problems it may cause," according to the Department of State.

If an American citizen applies for foreign citizenship voluntarily, they "may lose U.S. nationality," if there is evidence, through their statements or conduct, that they intend to give up their U.S. citizenship.

... ... ...

Sanders' case

So has Sanders ever taken action to claim the Israeli citizenship the would qualify for? He told Rehm no, and we have no evidence that would call that into question. While Sanders is Jewish by birth and spent some time on an Israeli kibbutz, or community farm, in the early 1960s, he would not have become a citizen without a concerted effort to become one.

We did not hear back from Sanders' office, but a spokesman, Michael Briggs, told Politico that "Diane Rehm is an excellent radio host. There's a great big Internet out there with lots of good and bad information. I've never heard the question come up before."

Hazony, an Israeli who studied at Princeton and Rutgers and who has written widely about both American and Israeli politics, said he's not aware of any American lawmakers with Israeli citizenship. "In fact, it is common for Jews who are dual U.S.-Israel citizens to renounce one or the other before serving in official government capacities," he said.

[Nov 12, 2018] The problem of dial citizenship is the US is not limited to Isreal

Nov 12, 2018 | www.latimes.com

In 1967, the court ruled that the State Department had violated the Constitution when it refused to issue a new U.S. passport to a U.S. citizen who had voted in an election in Israel. The decision overturned a law saying that "a person, who is a national of the United States, whether by birth or naturalization, shall lose his nationality by voting in a political election in a foreign state."

...there is no authoritative tally of how many U.S. citizens possess another nationality. Michael A. Olivas, an immigration professor at the University of Houston Law Center, believes that the number is well over 1 million and could be several times that number.

... ... ...

But the concept of dual citizenship is problematic both symbolically and practically, and could become divisive if more immigrants decide to avail themselves of the privileges of U.S. citizens -- as we believe they ought to do. U.S citizens with strong ties to their ancestral countries have been accused of divided loyalties in the past even when they didn't possess citizenship in those countries -- witness the internment of 110,000 Japanese and Japanese Americans during World War II. But when a U.S. citizen is also a citizen of another country, the accusation is even easier to make.

... ... ...

But it's also true that dual citizenship undermines the common bond that unites U.S. citizens regardless of their ethnicity, religion or place of birth. Dual citizenship places a sort of asterisk next to the names of some U.S. citizens but not others.

... ... ...

Nations vary in their attitudes toward dual citizenship. Some reject the concept outright; others allow their citizens to take out a second citizenship only in selected countries and some have drawn a distinction between citizenship and nationality.

Yet there's no question that dual citizenship poses practical problems both for those who possess it and for the government. The U.S. State Department discourages U.S. citizens from retaining or applying for citizenship in another country because "dual nationality may limit U.S. government efforts to assist nationals abroad. The country where a dual national is located generally has a stronger claim to that person's allegiance." The department also warns that "dual citizenship can present a security issue whether to permit access to classified information which affects recruitment, employment and assignments." In some cases, dual citizenship could disqualify an applicant for a sensitive position with the CIA or the State Department.

The complexities and complications raised by dual citizenship are not enough to justify amending the Constitution to overrule the Supreme Court. But we agree with the State Department that U.S. citizens should think twice about professing allegiance to another country. Moreover, by reinforcing the doubts that some hold about the loyalty of immigrants -- some U.S. citizens, for instance, fume when Mexican Americans display the Mexican flag at Cinco de Mayo rallies -- the persistence of dual citizenship may make it politically more difficult to secure a path to citizenship for immigrants who came here illegally.

[Nov 12, 2018] DEA And ICE Hiding Secret Cameras In Streetlights

Modern technology makes many things possible, but it does not make them cheap... The camera needs to work in pretty adverse conditions (think about the temperature inside the light on a hot summer day, and temperature at winter) and transmit signal somewhere via WiFi (which has range less then 100m) , or special cable that needs to be installed for this particular pole. With wifi there should be many collection units which also cost money. So it make sense only for streetlights adjacent to building with Internet networking. And there are already cameras of the highway, so highways are basically covered. Which basically limits this technology to cities. Just recoding without transmission would be much cheaper (transmission on demand). Excessive paranoia here is not warranted.
Nov 12, 2018 | www.zerohedge.com

According to new government procurement data, the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) and Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) have purchased an undisclosed number of secret surveillance cameras that are being hidden in streetlights across the country.

Quartz first reported this dystopian development of federal authorities stocking up on "covert systems" last week. The report showed how the DEA paid a Houston, Texas company called Cowboy Streetlight Concealments LLC. approximately $22,000 since June for "video recording and reproducing equipment." ICE paid out about $28,000 to Cowboy Streetlight Concealments during the same period.

"It's unclear where the DEA and ICE streetlight cameras have been installed, or where the next deployments will take place. ICE offices in Dallas, Houston, and San Antonio have provided funding for recent acquisitions from Cowboy Streetlight Concealments; the DEA's most recent purchases were funded by the agency's Office of Investigative Technology, which is located in Lorton, Virginia," said Quartz.

Below is the list Of contract actions for Cowboy Streetlight Concealments LLC. Vendor_Duns_Number: "085189089" on the Federal Procurement Database:

Christie Crawford, who co-owns Cowboy Streetlight Concealments with her husband, said she was not allowed to talk about the government contracts in detail.

"We do streetlight concealments and camera enclosures," Crawford told Quartz. "Basically, there's businesses out there that will build concealments for the government and that's what we do. They specify what's best for them, and we make it. And that's about all I can probably say."

However, she added: "I can tell you this -- things are always being watched. It doesn't matter if you're driving down the street or visiting a friend, if government or law enforcement has a reason to set up surveillance, there's great technology out there to do it."

Quartz notes that the DEA issued a solicitation for "concealments made to house network PTZ [Pan-Tilt-Zoom] camera, cellular modem, cellular compression device," last Monday. According to solicitation number D-19-ST-0037, the sole source award will go to Obsidian Integration LLC.

On November 07, the Jersey City Police Department awarded Obsidian Integration with "the purchase and delivery of a covert pole camera." Quartz said the filing did not provide much detail about the design.

It is not just streetlights the federal government wants to mount covert surveillance cameras on, it seems cameras inside traffic barrels could be heading onto America's highways in the not too distant future.

And as Quartz reported in October, the DEA operates a complex network of digital speed-display road signs that covertly scan license plates. On top of all this, Amazon has been aggressively rolling out its Rekognition facial-recognition software to law enforcement agencies and ICE, according to emails uncovered by the Project for Government Oversight.

Chad Marlow, a senior advocacy and policy counsel for the ACLU, told Quartz that cameras in street lights have been proposed before by local governments, typically under a program called "smart" LED street light system.

"It basically has the ability to turn every streetlight into a surveillance device, which is very Orwellian to say the least," Marlow told Quartz. "In most jurisdictions, the local police or department of public works are authorized to make these decisions unilaterally and in secret. There's no public debate or oversight."

And so, as the US continues to be distracted, torn amid record political, social and economic polarization, big brother has no intention of letting the current crisis go to waste, and quietly continues on its path of transforming the US into a full-blown police and surveillance state.


wuffie , 9 minutes ago link

I previously worked for one of these types of federal agencies and to be fair, $50,000 doesn't buy a lot of video surveillance equipment at government procurement costs. The contractor doesn't just drill a hole and install a camera, they provide an entirely new streetlight head with the camera installed.

SantaClaws , 36 minutes ago link

It would be nice if they put some of this technology to work for a good cause. Maybe warning you of traffic congestion ahead. Or advising you that one of your tires will soon go flat.

Obviously that won't happen, so in the meantime, I can't wait to read next how the hackers will find a way to make this government effort go completely haywire. As if the government can't do it without any help. At least when the hackers do it, it will be funny and thorough.

21st.century , 56 minutes ago link

Besides the creepy surveillance part, some of the street light tech is interesting . lights that dim like the frozen food section - when no one is in front of the case --- RGB lighting that shows the approximate location for EMS to a 911 call ( lights that EMS can follow by color)

basic neighborhood street lights are being replaced by LED -- lights in this article.

Hey, I have street lights AND cameras on the same poles at the shop/mad scientist lab/ play house.

but- surveillance -- the wall better have these lights -- light up the border !

Oldguy05 , 1 hour ago link

This is yesteryears news. Shot Spotter has microphones that can pick up whispered conversations for 300 feet for a long time now, while triangulating any gunshot in a city...

[Nov 12, 2018] Trump was elected by advocating a populist-nationalist agenda, he betrayed his voters almost instantly and governed as Bush III

Notable quotes:
"... For his first two years in office, he sunk nearly all his political capital into enacting huge tax cuts for the rich, wholesale Wall Street deregulation, large increases in military spending, and an extremely pro-Israel foreign policy -- exactly the sort of policies near-and-dear to the establishment conservative candidates whom he had crushed in the Republican primaries. Meanwhile, his jilted grassroots supporters have had to settle for some radical rhetoric and a regular barrage of outrageous Tweets rather than anything more substantive. ..."
"... With Republicans in full control of Congress, finding excuses for this widespread betrayal was quite difficult, but now that the Democrats have taken the House, Trump's apologists can more easily shift the blame over to them. ..."
"... Both Trump's supporters and his opponents claim that his presidency represents a drastic break from Republican business-as-usual, and surely that was the hope of many of the Americans who voted for him in 2016, but the actual reality often seems rather different. ..."
"... Although the net election results were not particularly bad for the Republicans, the implications of several state races seem extremely worrisome. The highest profile senate race was in Texas, and Trump may have narrowly dodged a bullet. ..."
Nov 12, 2018 | www.unz.com

Perhaps the loss of the House may actually prove to be a mixed blessing for Trump. Democrats will achieve control of all the investigative committees and their accusations and subpoenas will make Trump's life even more miserable than it was before, while surely removing any chance that significant elements of Trump's remaining agenda will ever be enacted.

However, although Trump had reached the presidency by advocating a radical populist-nationalist agenda, he has hardly governed in those terms. For his first two years in office, he sunk nearly all his political capital into enacting huge tax cuts for the rich, wholesale Wall Street deregulation, large increases in military spending, and an extremely pro-Israel foreign policy -- exactly the sort of policies near-and-dear to the establishment conservative candidates whom he had crushed in the Republican primaries. Meanwhile, his jilted grassroots supporters have had to settle for some radical rhetoric and a regular barrage of outrageous Tweets rather than anything more substantive.

With Republicans in full control of Congress, finding excuses for this widespread betrayal was quite difficult, but now that the Democrats have taken the House, Trump's apologists can more easily shift the blame over to them.

Meanwhile, a considerably stronger Republican Senate will certainly ease the way for Trump's future court nominees, especially if another Supreme Court vacancy occurs, and there will be little chance of any difficult Kavanaugh battles. However, here once again, Trump's supposed radicalism has merely been rhetorical. Kavanaugh and nearly all of his other nominees have been very mainstream Republican choices, carefully vetted by the Federalist Society and other conservative establishment groups, and they would probably have been near the top of the list if Jeb Bush or Marco Rubio were sitting in the Oval Office.

Both Trump's supporters and his opponents claim that his presidency represents a drastic break from Republican business-as-usual, and surely that was the hope of many of the Americans who voted for him in 2016, but the actual reality often seems rather different.

Although the net election results were not particularly bad for the Republicans, the implications of several state races seem extremely worrisome. The highest profile senate race was in Texas, and Trump may have narrowly dodged a bullet. Among our largest states, Texas ranks as by far the most solidly Republican, and therefore it serves as the central lynchpin of every Republican presidential campaign. The GOP has won every major statewide race for more than twenty years, but despite such seemingly huge advantages, incumbent Sen. Ted Cruz faced a very difficult reelection race against a young border-area Congressman named Beto O'Rourke, who drew enormous enthusiasm and an ocean of local and national funding.

[Nov 12, 2018] War has become USA's 2nd nature above beyond the very essence of the military use, which should be to protect the nation's sovereignty

Nov 12, 2018 | www.zerohedge.com

All Risk No Reward , 52 seconds ago link

>>Johnstone: The Best Way To Honor War Veterans Is To Stop Creating Them<<

Preach!

The military defends Money Power Monopolist Mega-Corporate Fascist Global Empire, not America, and definitely NOT the Constitution. The New Deal effectively wiped out the Constitution, which was the "Old Deal."

Syria and Iran aren't threats, they are countries that don't have debt-based money systems controlled by the Money Power Monopolists.

"In a sense, there is no "future". Currently, you note a consolidation of the few remaining countries without a "central bank" ...and how rapidly this is occurring. Look for Syria next to fall, and fall quickly. North Korea has already cut a deal under the aegis of China...feit accompli. Cuba has also agreed to the North American integration once Fidel "passes". That leaves IRAN. And biblical prophesy. The fallout from that conflict sets the stage for the true new world order as has been broadcast in the media for the last 13 years or so." ~Unnamed Rothschild

The establishment of central banks is ALWAYS a necessary first step of subjugation of geographically congregated bloodlines. Note that Libya's first official act, before even the corpses turned stiff...was the establishment of a central bank. Those rebel forces were certainly well schooled by someone! ~Unnamed Rothschild

Amazing how Libyan rebels took time out of their daily war duties to establish a CENTRAL BANK! Imagine the paperwork in getting that done on the battlefield! Those rebels are a well educated lot! Laughing out Loud! Seriously, don't the serfs notice things like this? ~Unnamed Rothschild

The financier of the military makes it clear they are attacking Western countries - monetarily and economically.

"Remember, the equity and bond markets exist only to remove fiat from circulation!" ~Unnamed Rothschild

https://ia802300.us.archive.org/8/items/rofschildv1/IAmARofschildAxeMeAQuestion.html

BitchesBetterRecognize , 14 minutes ago link

Difficult to argue the points made in the article, despite the author's background...

War has become USA's 2nd nature above & beyond the very essence of the military use, which should be to protect the nation's sovereignty

Golden Showers , 21 minutes ago link

Our soldiers joined, were trained, given orders. The best way to honor veterans is to quit putting it on them. This is the government we have because it is the government we want. It's the government we allow. This is on all of us . I think it's time for people who are dissatisfied with the treatment of veterans, with the voter fraud, with the lies and theft of elected officials, local, state, and federal, tired of the media lying to us and creating fake events... perhaps it's time to peacefully strike. Perhaps it's time to say No to vote fraud, to say No to lies and deceit.

Perhaps it's time to peacefully petition the government for redress of grievances. That's a Constitutional Right guaranteed to Citizens of the United States. That requires an active, constructive peaceful assembly. Everyone has had it up to the eyes with this ******** and this con-game we're being fed.

I'd rather get stomped to death than live on with this never ending slow coup against We The People. We hold the power. Just us. We designate that power. It should be here to protect us. That social contract deserves respect. You may be watching the only chance in your life that you could do anything about it, given the current President and his attitude. I really think that. It's not enough to watch the Proud Boys punch an Antifa in the jaw. That doesn't do it for me. That's theatre.

My girlfriends father is old army security. I'm paying the bill at Dennys and he says, let me put my military discount on that. So he's behind a guy in an Operation Iraqi Freedom jacket. He says, hey; I like your jacket. The guy looks at him and he says, nice hat. Army Security Agency. The military deserves more than a discount at ******* Denny's. They deserve a country. So do I. So do you. But there's not going to be any country if we don't peacefully come together to hang every last traitor scumbag lying trasonous seditious bastard by just saying NO! Arrest these traitors! I don't want my vote raped. I don't want my speach raped. Or yours! I don't give a **** about illegals or their kids because I take care of my kids legally and lawfully and didn't put them in that **** expecting a parent of the century award.

I don't ******* care what you call yourself. But if it's more important than your right to call yourself whatever you want, you are my enemy and I tell you no.

If it's legal to vote and legal to be off work to vote, to peacefully assemble, it should be legal to redress government. It's time to show out. It's time to say we want this ******** to stop. We have paid very well for the lifestyles and presidential libraries and foundations and kept all the traitors in good health. But we reserve the right to cut you off if you abuse our sacrifice to you and our votes to you. We reserve the right without prejudice to say NO. That's our right. And until we say NO! our silence equals consent.

I say NO. I say **** THE SEDITIOUS TRAITORS trying to hold on to rape us of all our Rights. And I say long live Trump for giving our country back to us at inauguration. That's what's up. Let's peacefully **** these people up. USE IT OR LOSE IT.

Hubbs , 22 minutes ago link

A quiet tribute to the Vets from Dire Straits

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k5JkHBC5lDs

And from a movie that says the futility of it all: "We fight because we are here." Imagine dying in the trenches of WWI or in a shithole like the trenches of Korea.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6nPdVJQaci0&t=186s&list=LLMCbuscsdXrwVsvALbKO5pw&index=19

@3:16

The least we could do is to learn what really happened and why. I realize I was taught an endless string of lies about history, especially US History, WWI, WWII, Vietnam war.

Be very careful and informed before joining the military.

Mike Rotsch , 42 minutes ago link

Libtards don't really know much about anything, so it seems. Here's the deal:

As long as there are assholes in the world, there will be wars.

I don't have a problem with that. It's the world that I live in. It's been the case throughout all of human history. A world without wars is pure ******* fantasy. It will never happen. It's high time that libtards start accepting the world that they live in.

The problem that we're having , is that we're shooting the wrong assholes instead of the right ones. But you know what? All of human history shows that problems like that are always remedied as well. And if you're doing some soul-searching, trying to figure out who the assholes are, they're probably going to be any group of people, who can't leave other groups of people the hell alone .

Not surprisingly, the 20th century seems to be characterized by assholes fighting each other.

Buddha 71 , 43 minutes ago link

Our psychopathic dna as a nation comes mainly from england, one of the most, if not the most murdering countries in history. england cruelly colonized Asia and Africa, and literally never stopped murdering the innocents. Now as our ALLY, among the other killing nations, such as France and Germany, we the USA can kill literally any country or countries for any reason or no reason.

we as the american people will be blamed for all the monstrous destruction and innocents deaths. separation of our country and our politicians would be necessary if we are to have a future. looking dim. why are we still dirty, and killing innocents, why are we allowing saudi and israel to mass murder innocent women and children ?

no one cares enough yet. you would think by 2018 we all would have banned war and conflict, we have not. this makes me sick. I am a vet.

vic and blood , 43 minutes ago link

"since the end of the second world war..."

No matter how they were presented at the time, ultimately, neither world war served the cause of freedom, either.

vic and blood , 51 minutes ago link

No more wars for Zionists.

punchasocialist , 56 minutes ago link

Happy 99th ARMISTICE DAY everyone!

kudocast , 1 hour ago link

http://www.untoldhistory.com

LeadPipeDreams , 1 hour ago link

Hmmm...what about Israhell and the ZioNazi tribe of the Talmud? Don't they deserve a mention?

hangemhigh77 , 1 hour ago link

I'm actually thinking of not watching football anymore the war propaganda is constant. I went to a game and it was like walking into an armed camp. Hundreds of cops and military. Every five minutes they're marching around and everyone has to "honor" them. It's disgusting. All the players are told to kiss every soldiers ***. The Army are the terrorists. They all make me want to puke.

khnum , 1 hour ago link

In Australia at the moment the suicide rate is a shocker among those coming back from Afghanistan, Iraq and places unknown, the solution they are proposing is for priority airport treatment and more medals and other stuff along the model the US has, which is an insult as it does nothing to financially support or mentally cure, its a cop out.

warpigs , 50 minutes ago link

Yes, it is ******** Khnum.

Very few wars are even about righting some amazing wrong. They merely tend to be about treasure i.e. nat gas, oil, rare earth materials, diamonds, water, blah blah blah. And, if there happens to be some fight, ala WWII, then you can bet your *** on it that all corporate assholes are funding and benefiting from the war....on both sides of the coin i.e. backing each side until a peace is called.

I don't have an answer to the human condition or our propensity to be violent and fight etc., but I sure as **** am not cool with sacking places, and killing kids, over ******* things. We're better than this.

I have 2 kids myself. You can all be on notice that if a bomb were to be dropped on my house, and if my kids were killed, I would likely devolve and start picking off the low hanging fruit i.e. the zombies shuffling in and out of said bomb makers companies, and wasting them 1 person as a time. I'd slowly, if still able, work my way up to the execs. Hopefully, and along the way, I'd be able to wipe shareholders off of the grid, also.

Overfed , 5 minutes ago link

When you go off to fight for "freedom", and arrive home to find that you have little to no real freedom and essentially live in a police state, it's a shocking blow.

halcyon , 2 minutes ago link

You get what you sign up for. It's not like the soldiers didn't know.

kudocast , 56 minutes ago link

Yeh I go to games, it is completely disgusting how the NFL promotes the military at the games.

https://www.facebook.com/DenverBroncosCheerleaders/photos/pb.85485353285.-2207520000.1542000250./10156691022423286/?type=3&theater

They look like a bunch of Nazis.

hangemhigh77 , 1 hour ago link

This sounds like something I would write. And even the damn CHURCHES honor the veteran "serving" his country. What a crock of ****. I tell the pastor that he will be judged harshly when his time comes. And I tell Christians that because they support the rampant murder of millions that when they die and are standing before Jesus for judgement they will be soaked in the blood of the innocent and he will ask you why did you support this? Why did you not speak out against it? Then I look at them and say "good luck because you're gonna need it".

LightBulb18 , 1 hour ago link

The world is not ruled by pure evil yet. In Brazil A nationalist was elected, in Italy and much of eastern Europe other nationalists were elected. You think the Chinese protected the Italian and Brazilian right to free and fair elections? You think Russia is the arsenal of freedom? You think the EU upheld the votes of the people, allowing Britain to vote on leaving the EU and Italy and eastern Europe? You think the unelected rulers of the EU respected other peoples right to vote? Look out onto the world, and recognize that as of today, the nations of the world have A group to join if they chose to fight for liberty, capitalism and all the other virtues, and that group is grounded and guaranteed by the United States of America. In G-d I trust.

stonedogz , 1 hour ago link

Hopeful thinking for a hopeless reality. Truth is tyrants never fall by their own swords. It always takes someone else's. The modern problem is a bit more complex when we make the tyrants that we later topple. The toppling is where the bucks are... just ask any of the the last 4 Presidents and their respective Congresses.

minionz1 , 1 hour ago link

I am eagerly waiting the time when they replace Veterans Day with Peace Day.

Oldwood , 1 hour ago link

So war is just an American problem, something we just invented? Do we read much history or is it all PBS specials now. War has ALWAYS been fucked up. Violence has been a major contributor to immigration for all of history. Like it or not, we live in dangerous times. We can ASSUME that if America shrank it's military and ended all interventions that world peace would magically appear....but it won't. We can pray that while we retreat behind of big screen TVs that China will end their territorial expansion and military programs, but they WON'T.

I'm all for reigning in our interventions, but let's not pretend that America is to blame for human evil and aggressive behaviors....just because we are good at it..

There is an endless stream of history illustrating the absolute brutality and evil that had persisted since the beginning of time. We should avoid embracing it but we should avoid thinking we have the power to end it. More arrogance to be used for destructive purposes.

halcyon , 3 minutes ago link

Nah, it is just that USA has made forever war such a profitable and ongoing mega-business. The degenerate banker and royal families of Europe would only fight every generation or two. You fight all the time and try to start new ones, before you finish off with the old ones, and print global toilet paper to pay for it all. Because it is good business. **** laws, lives and human decency.

And then you have Hollywood make ****-for-brain movies about just wars, war comradery and heroic sacrifice and spread that **** all over the world.

So yeah, you got all the reasons for being hated for your war business.

PuttingIsLikeWisdom , 1 hour ago link

"..nerd somewhere in Washington.."?? 'Washington' is beholding to Netanyahu's ilk.

OZZIDOWNUNDER , 1 hour ago link

The only way to honor veterans, really, truly honor them, is to help end war and make sure no more lives are put into a position where they are on the giving or receiving end of evil, stupid, meaningless violence

A bit too close to the Bone for the average American to appreciate. A well thought out & articulated article.

minionz1 , 1 hour ago link

I predict, one day soon, this Zombie Nation will soon awaken. Great Song by Kernkraft 400: Zombie nation - woah oh oh

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WRbuvKYKI54

Pooper Popper , 1 hour ago link

Well,Well,Well,,,,,,,, Bomb Scare at Fort Lauderdale Airport....... "Suspicious Package Found" Provisional Ballots,,,,,,,,,,,

https://twitter.com/Richard...

Hmmmmmmmmmm?

WWG1
WGA

DarthVaderMentor , 1 hour ago link

The machine is not the problem. It's like a gun. Guns are just mechanical devices and can't kill until people aim them and pull the trigger. It's people that kill by forcing the machine to do their terrible evil bidding.

It's the business and political leaders that build, guide and enable the machine and facilitate the infrastructure and culture to wage war.

Blue Boat , 1 hour ago link

Absolutely! No more freaking WAR. Instead, death to the MIC, globalists and Marxists. Thank you!

Handful of Dust , 1 hour ago link

Democrats love War as we saw with LBJ, Bill Clinton (bombing the hell out of and destroying Yugoslavia), Obama and Hillary Clinton. Democrat McNamara was one of their finest! McNamara's Folly: The Use of Low-IQ Troops in the Vietnam War

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_J2VwFDV4-g

PS: I will add, the Deep State and Neocons are not much better.

kudocast , 1 hour ago link

It's both Republicans and Democrats - George Bush I's Desert Storm, Panama; George Bush II invading Iraq, Afghanistan; Reagan invading GRENADA!, Nixon in Vietnam, assassinating Salvador Allende in Chile, bombing Laos and Cambodia; Eisenhower started in Vietnam, installed a dictator in Guatemala in 1954, installed Batista in Cuba, Kennedy was going to withdraw from Vietnam and part of the reason he was assassinated; and on and on and on.

FrankieGoesToHollywood , 1 hour ago link

Thank you veterans for the cheap oil.

[Nov 12, 2018] The Best Way To Honor War Veterans Is To Stop Creating Them by Caitlin Johnstone

Highly recommended!
Notable quotes:
"... Veterans Day is not a holiday to honor the men and women who have dutifully protected their country. The youngest Americans who arguably defended their nation from a real threat to its shores are in their nineties, and soon there won't be any of them left. ..."
"... Every single person who has served in the US military since the end of the second World War has protected nothing other than the agendas of global hegemony, resource control and war profiteering. They have not been fighting and dying for freedom and democracy, they have been fighting and dying for imperialism, Raytheon profit margins, and crude oil. ..."
"... Veterans Day, like so very, very much in American culture, is a propaganda construct designed to lubricate the funneling of human lives into the chamber of a gigantic gun. It glorifies evil, stupid, meaningless acts of mass murder to ensure that there will always be recruits who are willing to continue perpetrating it, and to ensure that the US public doesn't wake up to the fact that its government's insanely bloated military budget is being used to unleash unspeakable horrors upon the earth. ..."
"... Your rulers have never feared the Koreans, the Vietnamese, the Iraqis, the terrorists, the Iranians, the Chinese or the Russians. They fear you. They fear the American public suddenly waking up to the evil things that are being done in your name and using your vast numbers to shrug off the existing power structures without firing a shot, as easily as removing a heavy coat on a warm day. If enough of you loudly withdraw your consent for their insatiable warmongering, that fear will be enough to keep them in check. ..."
Nov 12, 2018 | www.zerohedge.com

Authored by Caitlin Johnstone via Medium.com,

The US will be celebrating Veterans Day, and many a striped flag shall be waved. The social currency of esteem will be used to elevate those who have served in the US military, thereby ensuring future generations of recruits to be thrown into the gears of the globe-spanning war machine

Veterans Day is not a holiday to honor the men and women who have dutifully protected their country. The youngest Americans who arguably defended their nation from a real threat to its shores are in their nineties, and soon there won't be any of them left.

Every single person who has served in the US military since the end of the second World War has protected nothing other than the agendas of global hegemony, resource control and war profiteering. They have not been fighting and dying for freedom and democracy, they have been fighting and dying for imperialism, Raytheon profit margins, and crude oil.

I just said something you're not supposed to say. People have dedicated many years of their lives to the service of the US military; they've given their limbs to it, they've suffered horrific brain damage for it, they've given their very lives to it. Families have been ripped apart by the violence that has been inflicted upon members of the US Armed Forces; you're not supposed to let them hear you say that their loved one was destroyed because some sociopathic nerds somewhere in Washington decided that it would give America an advantage over potential economic rivals to control a particular stretch of Middle Eastern dirt. But it is true, and if we don't start acknowledging that truth lives are going to keep getting thrown into the gears of the machine for the power and profit of a few depraved oligarchs. So I'm going to keep saying it.

Last week I saw the hashtag #SaluteToService trending on Twitter. Apparently the NFL had a deal going where every time someone tweeted that hashtag they'd throw a few bucks at some veteran's charity. Which sounds sweet, until you consider three things:

1. The NFL's ten wealthiest team owners are worth a combined $61 billion .

2. The NFL has taken millions of dollars from the Pentagon for displays of patriotism on the field, including for the policy of bringing all players out for the national anthem every game starting in 2009 (which led to Colin Kaepernick's demonstrations and the obscene backlash against him).

3. VETERANS SHOULD NOT HAVE TO RELY ON FUCKING CHARITY.

Seriously, how is "charity for veterans" a thing, and how are people not extremely weirded out by it? How is it that you can go out and get your limbs blown off for slave wages after watching your friends die and innocent civilians perish, come home, and have to rely on charity to get by? How is it that you can risk life and limb killing and suffering irreparable psychological trauma for some plutocrat's agendas, plunge into poverty when you come home, and then see the same plutocrat labeled a "philanthropist" because he threw a few tax-deductible dollars at a charity that gave you a decent prosthetic leg?

Taking care of veterans should be factored into the budget of every act of military aggression . If a government can't make sure its veterans are housed, healthy and happy in a dignified way for the rest of their lives, it has no business marching human beings into harm's way. The fact that you see veterans on the street of any large US city and people who fought in wars having to beg "charities" for a quality mechanical wheelchair shows you just how much of a pathetic joke this Veterans Day song and dance has always been.

They'll send you to mainline violence and trauma into your mind and body for the power and profit of the oligarchic rulers of the US-centralized empire, but it's okay because everyone gets a long weekend where they're told to thank you for your service. Bullshit.

Veterans Day, like so very, very much in American culture, is a propaganda construct designed to lubricate the funneling of human lives into the chamber of a gigantic gun. It glorifies evil, stupid, meaningless acts of mass murder to ensure that there will always be recruits who are willing to continue perpetrating it, and to ensure that the US public doesn't wake up to the fact that its government's insanely bloated military budget is being used to unleash unspeakable horrors upon the earth.

The only way to honor veterans, really, truly honor them, is to help end war and make sure no more lives are put into a position where they are on the giving or receiving end of evil, stupid, meaningless violence. The way to do that is to publicly, loudly and repeatedly make it clear that you do not consent to the global terrorism being perpetrated in your name. These bastards work so hard conducting propaganda to manufacture your consent for endless warmongering because they need that consent . So don't give it to them.

Your rulers have never feared the Koreans, the Vietnamese, the Iraqis, the terrorists, the Iranians, the Chinese or the Russians. They fear you. They fear the American public suddenly waking up to the evil things that are being done in your name and using your vast numbers to shrug off the existing power structures without firing a shot, as easily as removing a heavy coat on a warm day. If enough of you loudly withdraw your consent for their insatiable warmongering, that fear will be enough to keep them in check.

This Veterans Day, don't honor those who have served by giving reverence and legitimacy to a war machine which is exclusively used for inflicting great evil. Honor them by disassembling that machine.

* * *

Thanks for reading! The best way to get around the internet censors and make sure you see the stuff I publish is to subscribe to the mailing list for my website , which will get you an email notification for everything I publish. My articles are entirely reader-supported, so if you enjoyed this piece please consider sharing it around, liking me on Facebook , following my antics on Twitter , checking out my podcast , throwing some money into my hat on Patreon or Paypal , buying my new book Rogue Nation: Psychonautical Adventures With Caitlin Johnstone , or my previous book Woke: A Field Guide for Utopia Preppers .

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[Nov 12, 2018] Obama s CIA Secretly Intercepted Congressional Communications About Whistleblowers

Highly recommended!
So the USA Congress operates under CIA surveillance... Due to CIA access to Saudi money the situation is probably much worse then described as CIA tried to protect both its level of influence and shadow revenue streams.
Notable quotes:
"... The idea that the CIA would monitor communications of U.S. government officials, including those in the legislative branch, is itself controversial. But in this case, the CIA picked up some of the most sensitive emails between Congress and intelligence agency workers blowing the whistle on alleged wrongdoing. ..."
"... I am not confident that Congressional staff fully understood that their whistleblower-related communications with my Executive Director of whistleblowing might be reviewed as a result of routine [CIA counterintelligence] monitoring." -- Intelligence Community Inspector General 2014 ..."
"... The disclosures from 2014 were released late Thursday by Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa). "The fact that the CIA under the Obama administration was reading Congressional staff's emails about intelligence community whistleblowers raises serious policy concerns as well as potential Constitutional separation-of-powers issues that must be discussed publicly," wrote Grassley in a statement. ..."
"... According to Grassley, he originally began trying to have the letters declassified more than four years ago but was met with "bureaucratic foot-dragging, led by Brennan and Clapper." ..."
"... Back in 2014, Senators Grassley and Ron Wyden (D-Oregon) had asked then-Director of National Intelligence Clapper about the possibility of the CIA monitoring Congressional communications ..."
"... CIA security compiled a report that include excerpts of whistleblower-related communications and this reports was eventually shared with the Director of the Office of Security and the Chief of the Counterintelligence Center" who "briefed the CIA Deputy Director, Deputy Executive Director, and the Chiefs of Staff for both the CIA Director and the Deputy Director ..."
"... During Director Clapper's tenure, senior intelligence officials engaged in a deception spree regarding mass surveillance," said Wyden upon Clapper's retirement in 2016. ..."
Nov 02, 2018 | www.zerohedge.com

Authored by Sharyl Attkisson,

Newly-declassified documents show the CIA intercepted sensitive Congressional communications about intelligence community whistleblowers.

The intercepts occurred under CIA Director John Brennan and Director of National Intelligence James Clapper. The new disclosures are contained in two letters of "Congressional notification" originally written to key members of Congress in March 2014, but kept secret until now.

In the letters, then-Intelligence Community Inspector General Charles McCullough tells four key members of Congress that during "routing counterintelligence monitoring of Government computer systems," the CIA collected emails between Congressional staff and the CIA's head of whistleblowing and source protection. McCullough states that he's concerned "about the potential compromise to whistleblower confidentiality and the consequent 'chilling effect' that the present [counterintelligence] monitoring system might have on Intelligence Community whistleblowing."

The idea that the CIA would monitor communications of U.S. government officials, including those in the legislative branch, is itself controversial. But in this case, the CIA picked up some of the most sensitive emails between Congress and intelligence agency workers blowing the whistle on alleged wrongdoing.

"Most of these emails concerned pending and developing whistleblower complaints," McCullough states in his letters to lead Democrats and Republicans on the House and Senate Intelligence Committees at the time: Senators Dianne Feinstein (D-California) and Saxby Chambliss (R-Georgia); and Representatives Michael Rogers (R-Michigan) and Dutch Ruppersberger (D-Maryland). McCullough adds that the type of monitoring that occurred was "lawful and justified for [counterintelligence] purposes" but

"I am not confident that Congressional staff fully understood that their whistleblower-related communications with my Executive Director of whistleblowing might be reviewed as a result of routine [CIA counterintelligence] monitoring." -- Intelligence Community Inspector General 2014

The disclosures from 2014 were released late Thursday by Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa). "The fact that the CIA under the Obama administration was reading Congressional staff's emails about intelligence community whistleblowers raises serious policy concerns as well as potential Constitutional separation-of-powers issues that must be discussed publicly," wrote Grassley in a statement.

According to Grassley, he originally began trying to have the letters declassified more than four years ago but was met with "bureaucratic foot-dragging, led by Brennan and Clapper."

Grassley adds that he repeated his request to declassify the letters under the Trump administration, but that Trump intelligence officials failed to respond. The documents were finally declassified this week after Grassley appealed to the new Intelligence Community Inspector General Michael Atkinson.

History of alleged surveillance abuses

Back in 2014, Senators Grassley and Ron Wyden (D-Oregon) had asked then-Director of National Intelligence Clapper about the possibility of the CIA monitoring Congressional communications. A Congressional staffer involved at the time says Clapper's response seemed to imply that if Congressional communications were "incidentally" collected by the CIA, the material would not be saved or reported up to CIA management.

"In the event of a protected disclosure by a whistleblower somehow comes to the attention of personnel responsible for monitoring user activity," Clapper wrote to Grassley and Wyden on July 25, 2014, "there is no intention for such disclosure to be reported to agency leadership under an insider threat program."

However, the newly-declassified letters indicate the opposite happened in reality with the whistleblower-related emails:

"CIA security compiled a report that include excerpts of whistleblower-related communications and this reports was eventually shared with the Director of the Office of Security and the Chief of the Counterintelligence Center" who "briefed the CIA Deputy Director, Deputy Executive Director, and the Chiefs of Staff for both the CIA Director and the Deputy Director."

Clapper has previously come under fire for his 2013 testimony to Congress in which he denied that the national Security Agency (NSA) collects data on millions of Americans. Weeks later, Clapper's statement was proven false by material leaked by former NSA contractor Edward Snowden.

"During Director Clapper's tenure, senior intelligence officials engaged in a deception spree regarding mass surveillance," said Wyden upon Clapper's retirement in 2016.

"Top officials, officials who reported to Director Clapper, repeatedly misled the American people and even lied to them."

Clapper has repeatedly denied lying, and said that any incorrect information he provided was due to misunderstandings or mistakes.

Clapper and Brennan have also acknowledged taking part in the controversial practice of "unmasking" the protected names of U.S. citizens - including people connected to then-presidential candidate Donald Trump - whose communications were "incidentally" captured in US counterintelligence operations. Unmaskings within the US intelligence community are supposed to be extremely rare and only allowed under carefully justified circumstances. This is to protect the privacy rights of American citizens. But it's been revealed that Obama officials requested unmaskings on a near daily basis during the election year of 2016.

Clapper and Brennan have said their activities were lawful and not politically motivated. Both men have become vocal critics of President Trump.

* * *

Order the New York Times bestseller "The Smear" today online or borrow from your library


Keter , 5 hours ago link

"ah, ah, ah, em, not intentionally." Clapper - ROFL

numapepi , 9 hours ago link

Can you imagine what kind of place the US would have been under Clinton?!!!!!!

All the illegality, spying, conniving, dirty tricks, arcancides, selling us out to the highest bidder and full on attack against our Constitution would be in full swing!

Chaotix , 9 hours ago link

When intel entities can operate unimpeded and un-monitored, it spells disaster for everyone and everything outside that parameter. Their operations go unnoticed until some stray piece of information exposes them. There are many facilities that need to be purged and audited, but since this activity goes on all over the world, there is little to stop it. Even countries that pledge allegiance and cooperation are blindsiding their allies with bugs, taps, blackmails, and other crimes. Nobody trusts nobody, and that's a horrid fact to contend with in an 'advanced' civilization.

numapepi , 9 hours ago link

Almost sounds like the Praetorian guard?

The real power behind the throne.

Rhys12 , 10 hours ago link

Forget the political parties. When the intelligence agencies spy on everyone, they know all about politicians of both parties before they ever win office, and make sure they have enough over them to control them. They were asleep at the switch when Trump won, because no one, including them, believed he would ever win. Hillary was their candidate, the State Department is known overseas as "the political arm of the CIA". They were furious when she lost, hence the circus ever since.

iAmerican10 , 11 hours ago link

From its founding by the Knights of Malta the JFK&MLK-assassinating, with Mossad 9/11-committing CIA has been the Vatican's US Fifth Column action branch, as are the FBI and NSA: with an institutional hiring preference for Roman Catholic "altared boy" closet-queen psychopaths "because they're practiced at keeping secrets."

Think perverts Strzok, Brennan, and McCabe "licked it off the wall?"

Smi1ey , 11 hours ago link

We need to bring back FOIA.

Too much secrecy.

And how is that Pentagon audit doing, btw?

Chaotix , 9 hours ago link

I agree with you 100%. Problem is, tons of secret technology and information have been passed out to the private sector. And the private sector is not bound to the FOIA requests, therefore neutralizing the obligation for government to disclose classified material. They sidestepped their own policies to cooperate with corrupt MIC contractors, and recuse themselves from disclosing incriminating evidence.

archie bird , 12 hours ago link

Everyone knows that spying runs in the fam. 44th potus Mom and Gma BOTH. An apple doesn't fall from the tree. If ppl only knew the true depth of the evil and corruption we would be in the hospital with a heart attack. Gilded age is here and has been, since our democracy was hijacked (McCain called it an intervention) back in 1963. Unfortunately it started WAY back before then when (((they))) stole everything with the installation of the Fed.

Dornier27 , 15 hours ago link

The FBI and CIA have long since slipped the controls of Congress and the Constitution. President Trump should sign an executive order after the mid terms and stand down at least the FBI and subject the CIA to a senate investigation.

America needs new agencies that are accountable to the peoples elected representatives.

greasyknees , 16 hours ago link

Not news. The CIA likely has had access to any and all electronic communication for at least a decade.

Lord JT , 19 hours ago link

what? clapper and brennan being dirty hacks behind the scenes while parading around as patriots? say it aint so!

Racin Rabitt , 20 hours ago link

A determined care has been used to cultivate in D.C., a system that swiftly decapitates the whistleblowers. Resulting in an increasingly subservient cadre of civil servants who STHU and play ostrich, or drool at what scraps are about to roll off the master's table as the slide themselves into a better position, taking advantage to sell vice, weapons, and slaves.

Westcoastliberal , 21 hours ago link

What the hell does the CIA have to do with ANYTHING in the United States? Aren't they limited to OUTSIDE the U.S.? So why would they be involved in domestic communications for anything? These clowns need to be indicted for TREASON!

5onIt , 22 hours ago link

Clapper and Brennan, Brennan and Clapper. These two guys are the damn devil.

It makes me ill.

MuffDiver69 , 22 hours ago link

I'll take " Police State" for five hundred Alex

[Nov 12, 2018] P>rotecting Americans from foreign influence, smells with COINTELPRO. Structural witch-hunt effect like during the McCarthy era is designed to supress decent to neoliberal oligarcy by Andre Damon and Joseph Kishore

Highly recommended!
Notable quotes:
"... There is something very, very COINTELPRO about the idea of "protecting" Americans from "foreign influence", and that should give liberals the heebie-jeebies. There is also an ongoing structural witch-hunt effect, unchanged from the McCarthy era, when internet firm heads are called to testify before congress. ..."
"... Bottom line - the Russians may have had no more effect on the election than the loose change in your house has on your salary. ..."
"... "Even more extreme measures are being planned and implemented, motivated by the basic principle that the greater the lie, the more aggressive the methods required to enforce it." ..."
"... "While the extortionate salaries commanded by the BBC's biggest stars are justified by "market rates," this underlying premise is never challenged by the women who are leading the gender pay fight. They don't oppose the capitalist market; they just want a bigger slice of the pie, with the working class footing the bill via contributions to the £4 billion annual license fee." - BBC gender pay row: Selective outrage of wealthy women ..."
"... The greater the inequality, the greater the lie to enforce it. ..."
"... While WSWS was uniquely correct in exposing Bush, Powell, and the ruling-elite structure of the U.S. as using deceit and lies to start an 'aggressive war' (the ultimate war crime), your description of this corrupt system of global power headquartered in the U.S. did not fully diagnose and expose it for what it was; a disguised global capitalist EMPIRE. ..."
"... Your description could have more effectively warned American citizen/'subjects' and the world that "Rather, it is a war of colonial (Empire) conquest, driven by a series of economic and geo-political aims that center on the seizure of Iraq's oil resources and the assertion of US global (Empire, not merely) hegemony." ..."
"... In any case, Andre and Joseph, thanks for reminding readers of this dark and deceitful moment of U.S. history in starting another 'aggressive war' almost two decades ago --- which wars will unfortunately continue until Americans themselves expose and ignite an essential Second America "Revolution Against Empire" [Justin duRivage] ..."
"... The Anglo-American-Israelite Empire is globally entrenched and enjoying expansion since 1945 ..."
"... I must admit myself I am disturbed by the sheer volume of unchallenged propaganda regarding these claims in the past few months. The media talking heads and various analysts don't ever really say what the implication of what their claims really mean-war. We are in an age of new mccarthyism ..."
"... What was amazing about Powell's charade was that even if Old Bad Ass as I call Saddam had had some Wombars of Mass Destruction they posed no danger whatsoever! It was obvious 9/11 had put the masses into a tizzy and they would have attacked Mars if told to! ..."
"... Yes, the "New Pearl Harbour" called for and carried out by the authors of the "Project for a New American Century" worked as planned. ..."
"... Quite right. My late father was a structural design engineer, specializing in large steel structures like the WTC and he called it as soon as the buildings imploded! ..."
"... Yes, Michael, the 'media/propaganda-sector' of this seven-sectored Disguised Global Capitalist EMPIRE is currently the most effective sector --- but the other six; corporate, financial, militarist, extra-legal, CFR 'Plot-Tanks', and of course the dual-party Vichy-political facade of the 'rougher-talking' neocon 'R' Vichy Party and the 'smoother-lying' neoliberal-con 'D' Vichy Party are all helping to keep the Empire sound, hidden, and empowered over the only American citizen/'subjects' who could possibly form a "Political Revolution against Empire" ..."
"... While it is true that D.C. is run by delusional psychotics that does not mean they are irrational as far as their greed is concerned. ..."
"... As R. Luxemburg pleaded that WWI was not "our" war but war of bunch of aristocrats wanting to divide colonies and bunch of bankers wanted their bad speculative loans repaid, using working class flesh and blood. ..."
Feb 20, 2018 | www.wsws.org

Wnt1a month ago

This is one of the most sensible editorials on the Russia issue I've seen, and it is true, insofar as it goes. There is something very, very COINTELPRO about the idea of "protecting" Americans from "foreign influence", and that should give liberals the heebie-jeebies. There is also an ongoing structural witch-hunt effect, unchanged from the McCarthy era, when internet firm heads are called to testify before congress.

That said, I wouldn't dismiss the effect of the Russian involvement, or the relevance of the charges against Trump and his people. Bear in mind that the Party of McCarthy has been all about spying on its opponents from the days of HUAC. Nixon's break-in at the Watergate Hotel didn't singlehandedly decide the election ... but who would believe that was the only underhanded tactic he used? Republicans believe that if you're not cheating, you're not trying -- holding out for any ethical standard makes you inherently disloyal and unworthy of support. Something like Kavanaugh's involvement in the hacking of Democrats in 2003 ( http://www.foxnews.com/poli... ) should be no surprise; neither should the "Guccifer" hack that put the Democrats' data in the hands of Wikileaks. (Their subsequent attempts to demand Wikileaks not publish such a newsworthy leak, of course, is the sort of thing that undermines their position with me!)

Bottom line - the Russians may have had no more effect on the election than the loose change in your house has on your salary.

But if you go back in your house after the Republicans were minding it, don't be surprised if together with the missing couch change you notice some missing silverware, your kitchen tap has been sawed off, and the laptop is short half its RAM. By the time you've catalogued everything missing, the stolen brass part from the gas main downstairs might have blown you to smithereens.

Greg8 months ago
"Even more extreme measures are being planned and implemented, motivated by the basic principle that the greater the lie, the more aggressive the methods required to enforce it."

There are many reasons the bourgeoisie is unfit to rule. Each one of them is bound up with the lies required to enforce its rule. The greater its unfitness, "the greater the lie, the more aggressive the methods required to enforce it.

"While the extortionate salaries commanded by the BBC's biggest stars are justified by "market rates," this underlying premise is never challenged by the women who are leading the gender pay fight. They don't oppose the capitalist market; they just want a bigger slice of the pie, with the working class footing the bill via contributions to the £4 billion annual license fee." - BBC gender pay row: Selective outrage of wealthy women

The greater the inequality, the greater the lie to enforce it.

Alan MacDonald8 months ago
While WSWS was uniquely correct in exposing Bush, Powell, and the ruling-elite structure of the U.S. as using deceit and lies to start an 'aggressive war' (the ultimate war crime), your description of this corrupt system of global power headquartered in the U.S. did not fully diagnose and expose it for what it was; a disguised global capitalist EMPIRE.

Your description could have more effectively warned American citizen/'subjects' and the world that "Rather, it is a war of colonial (Empire) conquest, driven by a series of economic and geo-political aims that center on the seizure of Iraq's oil resources and the assertion of US global (Empire, not merely) hegemony."

In any case, Andre and Joseph, thanks for reminding readers of this dark and deceitful moment of U.S. history in starting another 'aggressive war' almost two decades ago --- which wars will unfortunately continue until Americans themselves expose and ignite an essential Second America "Revolution Against Empire" [Justin duRivage]

Ambricourt -> Alan MacDonald8 months ago
The Anglo-American-Israelite Empire is globally entrenched and enjoying expansion since 1945. It is time radical critiques of its values, power and methods should call it by its right name.
Bob Marley8 months ago
I must admit myself I am disturbed by the sheer volume of unchallenged propaganda regarding these claims in the past few months. The media talking heads and various analysts don't ever really say what the implication of what their claims really mean-war. We are in an age of new mccarthyism
michaelroloff8 months ago
What was amazing about Powell's charade was that even if Old Bad Ass as I call Saddam had had some Wombars of Mass Destruction they posed no danger whatsoever! It was obvious 9/11 had put the masses into a tizzy and they would have attacked Mars if told to!
Terry Lawrence -> michaelroloff8 months ago
Yes, the "New Pearl Harbour" called for and carried out by the authors of the "Project for a New American Century" worked as planned.
michaelroloff -> Terry Lawrence8 months ago
don't tell me that you think that the blow-back that was 9/11 is a conspiracy - if you do, be so kind as to mention specific conspirators!
Terry Lawrence -> michaelroloff8 months ago
Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld, Wolfowitz, Rice, are a few obvious ones, . . . and that famous CIA asset, Bin Laden, to recruit the expendable hijackers.
michaelroloff -> Terry Lawrence8 months ago
just because it was a convenient act for them to do what they wanted in conquering iraq is not reason that idiots like that are capable of planning and concealing the numerous co-conspirators to arrange something like 9..11. imperialism can always count on blowback to have occasion for further crimes. there is the slim chance that they knew what was being planned and that they let it happen - except that none of those folks is evil enough for that. not even dick cheney. what i love about all conspiracy theories of the american kind is that they never nam or show an actual conspirator conspiring. look at one of the truly great failed conspiracy, that of the 20th july 1944 in germany that was meant to kill hitler and how many people were arrested in no time at all and executed..
Terry Lawrence michaelroloff8 months ago
A "conspiracy" is just any two or more people getting together to discuss something affecting one or more other people without them being party to the discussion. Like a surprise birthday party, for instance. Obviously the "official" version of the 9/11 events is also a "conspiracy theory" that 19 mostly Saudi Arabians led by a guy hiding in a cave in Afghanistan conspired to carry out co-ordinated attacks that just happened to coincide with most of the USAF being conveniently off in Alaska and northern Canada on an exercise that day, and another "coinciding exercise" simulating a multiple hijacking being carried out in the northeast US thereby confusing the Air Traffic Controllers as to whether the hijackings were "real world or exercise", significantly delaying the response, among other things.

Do you really believe that WTC 7, a steel frame building which was not adjacent to WTC 1 & 2, and was NOT hit by any airplanes, coincidentally collapsed due to low temperature paper and furniture office fires? Something that has never happened before or since? Or that such low temperature fires would cause the massive heavily reinforced concrete central core/elevator shaft to collapse first, pulling the rest of the building inward onto it in classic controlled demolition technique?

It is getting more difficult to find the videos showing that now as Google, as with WSWS articles, is pushing them off the front pages of results, while Snopes has put out a some very misleading reports that set up false "straw man" claims and then "disprove" them. Even the "disproofs" are false.

For instance, a Snopes report on the WTC 7 collapse states: "relied heavily on discredited claims, none of which were new, including:

Jet fuel cannot melt steel beams (This claim is misleading, as steel beams do to not need to melt completely to be compromised structurally).

A sprinkler system would have prevented temperatures from rising high enough to cause to cause structural damage. (This claim ignores the fact that a crash from a 767 jet would likely destroy such a system.)

The structural system would have been protected by fireproofing material (similarly, such a system would have been damaged in a 767 crash). "

Jet fuel, which is Kerosene, burns at around 575º in open air, which was the case in WTC buildings 1 & 2. Most of it was vaporized by the impact with the buildings and burned of within minutes. At any rate, 575º is far below the point at which structural steel specifically designed to withstand high temperature fires like that used in the World Trade Centre buildings is weakened.

All of which is irrelevant, as are the other "points" made by Snopes, because Building 7 was not hit by an airplane and there was no jet fuel involved. Something conveniently "overlooked" by Snopes and other similar misleading "disproofs". Not to mention that the Intelligence establishment is busy putting out false trails constantly which use, for instance, obviously faked photos or videos of the three WTC buildings collapsing to discredit the real videos and photos by setting up "straw men" they can then "disprove" and point to as "evidence" that people who don't believe the official version are "creating fake news".

liz_imp Terry Lawrence8 months ago
Brilliant points!! :)
Carolyn Zaremba Terry Lawrence8 months ago
Quite right. My late father was a structural design engineer, specializing in large steel structures like the WTC and he called it as soon as the buildings imploded!
Terry Lawrence michaelroloff8 months ago
"The perpetrators and their conspiracy is not a theory since it has been proved."

By "proved" I assume you are referring to "proofs" such as the fantastical claim that Mohammed Atta's passport was allegedly and fortuitously "found" when it supposedly survived the 600 mph impact of the 767 he was supposedly piloting with a huge steel and concrete building, survived the huge fireball it was supposedly in the middle of unscorched, and conveniently fluttered to the ground intact to land at the feet of an FBI agent who immediately realized it must have belonged to one of the hijackers!

Even Hans Christian Andersen couldn't invent Fairy Tales like that.

Carolyn Zaremba michaelroloff8 months ago
See my comment above. It is the "official" explanation that is a fantasy.
michaelroloff Carolyn Zaremba8 months ago
the best that conspiracy theorist can do is, invariably, to call proven facts "just another theory " which only proves that they are actually aware that they are full of hot air! zarembas father as a structural engineer unless a fantasy is certainly better off among the dead than among the living and perpetrating his ignorance of steel and weight and fire onto the world!
clubmarkgirard michaelroloff8 months ago
Just because all the details aren't known as to who conspired and why there's enough holes in the "official conspiracy theory" of 19 hijackers to conclude that this could not have been pulled off without some conspiring on the American side. Certainly the the neocons benefited greatly from these attacks. So motive is there for sure.
Alan MacDonald michaelroloff8 months ago
Yes, Michael, the 'media/propaganda-sector' of this seven-sectored Disguised Global Capitalist EMPIRE is currently the most effective sector --- but the other six; corporate, financial, militarist, extra-legal, CFR 'Plot-Tanks', and of course the dual-party Vichy-political facade of the 'rougher-talking' neocon 'R' Vichy Party and the 'smoother-lying' neoliberal-con 'D' Vichy Party are all helping to keep the Empire sound, hidden, and empowered over the only American citizen/'subjects' who could possibly form a "Political Revolution against Empire"
Kalen8 months ago
While it is true that D.C. is run by delusional psychotics that does not mean they are irrational as far as their greed is concerned.

There is nothing to win in global nuke war, all know it while the outcome would be surely the current global oligarchy loosing grip on population destroying the system that works for them so well giving chance to what they dread socialist revolution they would have been much weaker to counter.

Regional conflicts are just positioning of oligarchy for management of global oligarchic country club while strict class morality is maintained.

What I do not we are conditions for war (split of global ruling elites) while what I see is broad propaganda of war as a excuse to clamp down on fake enemy in order to control respective populations while there is factual unity among world oligarchy.

As R. Luxemburg pleaded that WWI was not "our" war but war of bunch of aristocrats wanting to divide colonies and bunch of bankers wanted their bad speculative loans repaid, using working class flesh and blood.

She died abandoned by those on the left who embraced the war for their political aspirations, she was murdered for her true internationalism i.e. No war fought between working people of one country and working people of another country.

Alan MacDonald Kalen8 months ago
Kalen, it's only effective to use the correct and understandable term 'Empire' in exposing, warning, and motivating average Americans --- since very few even know what words like; oligarchy, plutocracy, fascism, authoritarianism, corporate-state, or Wolin's 'inverted totalitarianism' mean --- let alone could ever serve as rallying cries for the coming essential Second American Revolution against EMPIRE.

As Pat would have shouted if Tom had taken the Paine to edit his call, "Give me Liberty over EMPIRE, or Give me Death!"

Carolyn Zaremba Alan MacDonald8 months ago
Do you really believe that average Americans are that stupid? Shame on you!
Alan MacDonald Carolyn Zaremba8 months ago
"Sweet Carolyn" OH OH OH --- Yes, only a very small percentage of Americans understand that our former country, the U.S. of America, is categorically, provably, and absolutely a new form of Empire, and is inexorably the first in world history an; 'effectively-disguised', 'truly-global', 'dual-party Vichy', and 'capitalist-fueled' EMPIRE --- an EMPIRE, really just an EMPIRE!

Just do an honest survey, "Sweet Carolyn", yourself, and if you're not a "Sweet Liarlyn", you will have to admit that essentially ZERO of the first 1000 people you ask, will say --- "Oh ya, Carolyn, of course I know that this whole effin 'system' that others less informed may still be so stupid that they think they live in a real country, when I (enter their name) do solemnly swear is just an effin EMPIRE, which is so well disguised, that these few idiots who don't understand that they are just citizen/'subjects' of this monsterous EMPIRE."

Do the survey, "Sweet Carolyn" and if you don't lie to yourself --- which maybe you do, because HELL, your job is to lie to others (so it's quite likely that you'll lie about anything) --- you'll find that exactly zero average Americans have the effin slightest idea in the world that their great 'country' is actually an effin EMPIRE.

HELL, Carolyn, almost half the Americans repeatedly yell, "We're number ONE", "We're number ONE", that their brains would rather rattle themselves to death than even let logic, history, knowledge, or anything into their addled and propaganda filled heads!

liz_imp Alan MacDonald8 months ago
Personal attacks are not allowed on this site.
Alan MacDonald liz_imp8 months ago
Sorry, Liz-imp, are you a friend of "Sweet Carolyn" --- or some other relation? Perhaps working together?
dmorista8 months ago
Excellent article, and it did a particularly good job of tying together the foreign policy and domestic policy stratagems of a major faction of the U.S. ruling class. I, for one, do not doubt that the Russians conduct some sort of cyber warfare against the U.S.; but that must be understood by considering the fact that every major governmental, political, military, and business organization on the face of the Earth must now operate in this manner. A friend of mine's son, who was in the Army, pointed out that the big players, by a wide margin, in spying on and to some degree interfering in the U.S. domestic scene are China and Israel. Kevin Barrett has written and said on various radio shows that much of what is attributed to the "Russians" are actually the actions of Russian/Israeli dual citizens, many of whom move freely between the U.S., Russia, and Israel. And, of course, the U.S. runs major spy and manipulation operations in more countries than any other nation of Earth, and U.S. based corporations are busy both inside the U.S. and in foreign places in similar activities.

It is clearly a desire of significant sectors, of the Capitalist rulers of the U.S., to repress dissent and political activities that oppose their agendas. It took them a few years to realize that their old methods using TV, hate radio, magazines, direct mail, and newspapers were losing their effectiveness. They have been increasing their attacks on leftist websites, hacking into websites, closing websites using phonied-up "national security" justifications, employing numerous trolls, and establishing and funding more far right websites, such as Breitbart and Infowars. These efforts are most effective when they are not overpowering and heavy handed.

The classic book on this was the 1988 book "Manufacturing Consent: The Political Economy of the Mass Media" by Noam Chomsky and Edward Hermann. Rob Williams has updated the concept for the internet age in
<http: www.vermontindependent.org ="" the-post-truth-world-reviving-the-propaganda-model-of-news-for-our-digital-age=""/>.

The strategy is nothing new, the methods are merely updated and use the latest technologies.

Maxwell dmorista8 months ago
Superb post.

I guess the lesson to be learned here is that rigging elections through byzantine electoral laws and billion dollar corporate slush funds is a thing of the past. All you need now is 13 amateur IT goomba's with a marketing scheme and twitter accounts. Well, sure is a fragile "World's Sole Superpower" we got here. Go Team?

[Nov 12, 2018] Although Trump had reached the presidency by advocating a radical populist-nationalist agenda, he has hardly governed in those terms

Nov 12, 2018 | www.unz.com

Perhaps the loss of the House may actually prove to be a mixed blessing for Trump. Democrats will achieve control of all the investigative committees and their accusations and subpoenas will make Trump's life even more miserable than it was before, while surely removing any chance that significant elements of Trump's remaining agenda will ever be enacted.

However, although Trump had reached the presidency by advocating a radical populist-nationalist agenda, he has hardly governed in those terms. For his first two years in office, he sunk nearly all his political capital into enacting huge tax cuts for the rich, wholesale Wall Street deregulation, large increases in military spending, and an extremely pro-Israel foreign policy -- exactly the sort of policies near-and-dear to the establishment conservative candidates whom he had crushed in the Republican primaries. Meanwhile, his jilted grassroots supporters have had to settle for some radical rhetoric and a regular barrage of outrageous Tweets rather than anything more substantive. With Republicans in full control of Congress, finding excuses for this widespread betrayal was quite difficult, but now that the Democrats have taken the House, Trump's apologists can more easily shift the blame over to them.

Meanwhile, a considerably stronger Republican Senate will certainly ease the way for Trump's future court nominees, especially if another Supreme Court vacancy occurs, and there will be little chance of any difficult Kavanaugh battles. However, here once again, Trump's supposed radicalism has merely been rhetorical. Kavanaugh and nearly all of his other nominees have been very mainstream Republican choices, carefully vetted by the Federalist Society and other conservative establishment groups, and they would probably have been near the top of the list if Jeb Bush or Marco Rubio were sitting in the Oval Office.

Both Trump's supporters and his opponents claim that his presidency represents a drastic break from Republican business-as-usual, and surely that was the hope of many of the Americans who voted for him in 2016, but the actual reality often seems rather different.

Although the net election results were not particularly bad for the Republicans, the implications of several state races seem extremely worrisome. The highest profile senate race was in Texas, and Trump may have narrowly dodged a bullet. Among our largest states, Texas ranks as by far the most solidly Republican, and therefore it serves as the central lynchpin of every Republican presidential campaign. The GOP has won every major statewide race for more than twenty years, but despite such seemingly huge advantages, incumbent Sen. Ted Cruz faced a very difficult reelection race against a young border-area Congressman named Beto O'Rourke, who drew enormous enthusiasm and an ocean of local and national funding.

I was actually in Texas just a couple of days before the vote, speaking at a Ron Paul-related conference in the Houston area, and although most of the libertarian-leaning attendees thought that Cruz would probably win, they all agreed with the national media that it would probably be close. Cruz's final victory margin of less than three points confirmed this verdict.

But if things had gone differently, and O'Rourke had squeaked out a narrow win, our national politics would have been immediately transformed. Any Republican able to win California has a near-lock on the White House, and the same is true for any Democrat able to carry Texas, especially if the latter is a young and attractive Kennedyesque liberal, fluent in Spanish and probably very popular with the large Latino populations of other important states such as Florida, Arizona, Nevada, and Colorado. I strongly suspect that a freshman Sen. O'Rourke (R-Texas) would have been offered the 2020 Democratic nomination almost by acclamation, and barring unexpected personal or national developments, would have been a strong favorite in that race against Trump or any other Republican. Rep. O'Rourke raised an astonishing $70 million in nationwide donations, and surely many of his contributors were dreaming of similar possibilities. A shift of just a point and a half, and in twenty-four months he probably would have been our next president. But it was not to be.

[Nov 12, 2018] We Are Heading For Another Tragedy Like World War I by Eric Margolis

Notable quotes:
"... officials and politicians in Britain and France conspired to transform Serbia's murder of Austro-Hungary's Crown Prince into a continent-wide conflict. France burned for revenge for its defeat in the 1870 Franco-Prussian War and loss of Alsace-Lorraine. Britain feared German commercial and naval competition. At the time, the British Empire controlled one quarter of the world's surface. Italy longed to conquer Austria-Hungary's South Tyrol. Turkey feared Russia's desire for the Straits. Austria-Hungary feared Russian expansion. ..."
"... Prof Clark clearly shows how the French and British maneuvered poorly-led Germany into the war. The Germans were petrified of being crushed between two hostile powers, France and Russia. The longer the Germans waited, the more the military odds turned against them. Tragically, Germany was then Europe's leader in social justice. ..."
"... Britain kept stirring the pot, determined to defeat commercial and colonial rival, Germany. The rush to war became a gigantic clockwork that no one could stop. All sides believed a war would be short and decisive. Crowds of fools chanted 'On to Berlin' or 'On to Paris.' ..."
"... The 1904 Russo-Japanese War offered a sharp foretaste of the 1914 conflict, but Europe's grandees paid scant attention. ..."
"... This demented war in Europe tuned into an even greater historic tragedy in 1917 when US President Woodrow Wilson, driven by a lust for power and prestige, entered the totally stalemated war on the Western Front. One million US troops and starvation caused by a crushing British naval blockade turned the tide of battle and led to Germany's surrender. ..."
"... Vengeful France and Britain imposed intolerable punishment on Germany, forcing it to accept full guilt for the war, an untruth that persists to this day. The result was Adolf Hitler and his National Socialists. If an honorable peace had been concluded in 1917, neither Hitler nor Stalin might have seized power and millions of lives would have been saved. This is the true tragedy of the Great War. ..."
"... Let us recall the words of the wise Benjamin Franklin: `No good war, no bad peace.' ..."
Nov 12, 2018 | www.zerohedge.com

Authored by Eric Margolis via EricMargolis.com,

We are now upon the 100th anniversary of World War I, the war that was supposed to end all wars. While honoring the 16 million who died in this conflict, we should also condemn the memory of the politicians, officials and incompetent generals who created this horrendous blood bath.

I've walked most of the Western Front of the Great War, visited its battlefields and haunted forts, and seen the seas of crosses marking its innumerable cemeteries.

As a former soldier and war correspondent, I've always considered WWI as he stupidest, most tragic and catastrophic of all modern wars.

The continuation of this conflict, World War II, killed more people and brought more destruction on civilians in firebombed cities but, at least for me, World War I holds a special horror and poignancy. This war was not only an endless nightmare for the soldiers in their pestilential trenches, it also violently ended the previous 100 years of glorious European civilization, one of mankind's most noble achievements.

I've explored the killing fields of Verdun many times and feel a visceral connection to this ghastly place where up to 1,000,000 soldiers died. I have even spent the night there, listening to the sirens that wailed without relent, and watching searchlights that pierced the night, looking for the ghosts of the French and German soldiers who died here.

Verdun's soil was so poisoned by explosives and lethal gas that to this day it produces only withered, stunted scrub and sick trees. Beneath the surface lie the shattered remains of men and a deadly harvest of unexploded shells that still kill scores of intruders each year. The spooky Ossuaire Chapel contains the bone fragments of 130,000 men, blown to bits by the millions of high explosive shells that deluged Verdun.

The town of the same name is utterly bleak, melancholy and cursed. Young French and German officers are brought here to see firsthand the horrors of war and the crime of stupid generalship.

Amid all the usual patriotic cant from politicians, imperialists and churchmen about the glories of this slaughter, remember that World War I was a contrived conflict that was totally avoidable. Contrary to the war propaganda that still clouds and corrupts our historical view, World War I was not started by Imperial Germany.

Professor Christopher Clark in his brilliant book, `The Sleepwalkers' shows how officials and politicians in Britain and France conspired to transform Serbia's murder of Austro-Hungary's Crown Prince into a continent-wide conflict. France burned for revenge for its defeat in the 1870 Franco-Prussian War and loss of Alsace-Lorraine. Britain feared German commercial and naval competition. At the time, the British Empire controlled one quarter of the world's surface. Italy longed to conquer Austria-Hungary's South Tyrol. Turkey feared Russia's desire for the Straits. Austria-Hungary feared Russian expansion.

Prof Clark clearly shows how the French and British maneuvered poorly-led Germany into the war. The Germans were petrified of being crushed between two hostile powers, France and Russia. The longer the Germans waited, the more the military odds turned against them. Tragically, Germany was then Europe's leader in social justice.

Britain kept stirring the pot, determined to defeat commercial and colonial rival, Germany. The rush to war became a gigantic clockwork that no one could stop. All sides believed a war would be short and decisive. Crowds of fools chanted 'On to Berlin' or 'On to Paris.'

Few at the time understood the impending horrors of modern war or the geopolitical demons one would release. The 1904 Russo-Japanese War offered a sharp foretaste of the 1914 conflict, but Europe's grandees paid scant attention.

Even fewer grasped how the collapse of the antiquated Ottoman and Austro-Hungarian Empires would send Europe and the Mideast into dangerous turmoil that persists to our day. Or how a little-known revolutionary named Lenin would shatter Imperial Russia and turn it into the world's most murderous state.

This demented war in Europe tuned into an even greater historic tragedy in 1917 when US President Woodrow Wilson, driven by a lust for power and prestige, entered the totally stalemated war on the Western Front. One million US troops and starvation caused by a crushing British naval blockade turned the tide of battle and led to Germany's surrender.

Vengeful France and Britain imposed intolerable punishment on Germany, forcing it to accept full guilt for the war, an untruth that persists to this day. The result was Adolf Hitler and his National Socialists. If an honorable peace had been concluded in 1917, neither Hitler nor Stalin might have seized power and millions of lives would have been saved. This is the true tragedy of the Great War.

Let us recall the words of the wise Benjamin Franklin: `No good war, no bad peace.'

[Nov 12, 2018] It should be abundantly clear by now that the Democratic Party leadership will be selecting a CIA connected candidate in 2020 in all ways identical to Hillary Clinton but perhaps with a less tawdry past and less of an appetite for Goldman-Sachs speaking fees by Louis Proyect

Notable quotes:
"... Donald Trump has been transforming American society not by legislation but by using his executive powers to put people in charge of government agencies who are inimical to their stated goals. It is like putting the fox in charge of the henhouse ..."
"... By contrast, Trump is imposing a regime that was incubated long ago by people such as Grover "Starve the Beast" Norquist and every other libertarian think-tank funded by the Koch Brothers et al. The big bourgeoisie might not like the bad taste, racism and thuggish behavior of the Trump administration but they couldn't be happier with the results. This is an elected government that has fulfilled its deepest policy aspirations and that shows a willingness to push the Democrats back on their heels, so much so that someone like Mikie Sherrill lacks the courage to defend policies that might win elections down the road. After all, if she is unseated, she can always go back to a job as a federal prosecutor in New Jersey. What happens to someone working in Walmart's is not her business, after all. ..."
Nov 09, 2018 | www.counterpunch.org

Ever since the Democratic Party abandoned its New Deal legacy and adopted the neoliberal centrism associated with the Carter presidency and then cast in stone by the Democratic Leadership Council in 1985, each election loss has generated a chorus of remonstrations in the left-liberal press about the need to run "progressive" candidates if the party wants to win. The latest instance of this was a post to the Jacobin FB page that stated: "By running to the right, Democrats insist on losing twice: at the polls and in constructing an inspiring agenda. Bold left-wing politics are our only hope for long-term, substantive victory."

The question of why Democrats are so okay with losing has to be examined closely. In some countries, elections have huge consequences, especially in Latin America where a job as an elected official might be not only a source of income for a socialist parliamentarian but a trigger for a civil war or coup as occurred in Costa Rica in 1948 and in Chile in 1973 respectively.

In the 2010 midterm elections, there was a massive loss of seats in the House of Representatives for the Democrats. In this month's midterm elections, the Democrats hoped that a "Blue Wave" would do for them what the 2010 midterms did for the Republicans -- put them in the driver's seat. It turned out to be more of a "Blue Spray", not to speak of the toothless response of House leader Nancy Pelosi who spoke immediately about how the Democrats can reach across the aisle to the knuckle-dragging racists of the Republican Party.

Out of curiosity, I went to Wikipedia to follow up on what happened to the "losers" in 2010. Did they have to go on unemployment? Like Republicans who got voted out this go-round, Democrats had no trouble lining up jobs as lobbyists. Allen Boyd from Florida sent a letter to Obama after the BP oil spill in 2010 asking him to back up BP's claim that seafood in the Gulf of Mexico was okay to eat. After being voted out of office, he joined the Twenty-First Century Group, a lobbying firm founded by a former Republican Congressman from Texas named Jack Fields. A 1980 article on Fields describes him as a protégé of ultraright leader Paul Weyrich.

Glenn Nye, who lost his job as a Virginia congressman, his considerable CV that included working for the Agency for International Development (AID) and serving in various capacities during the occupation of Iraq to land a nice gig as Senior Political Advisor for the Hanover Investment Group.

John Spratt from South Carolina was described by Dow Jones News as "one of the staunchest fiscal conservatives among House Democrats." That was enough for him to land a job with Barack Obama's National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform that was supposed to come up with a strategy to reduce the deficit. Just the sort of thing that was calculated to lift the American economy out of the worst slump since the 1930s. Not.

Pennsylvania's Chris Carney was a helluva Democrat. From 2002 to 2004, he was a counterterrorism analyst for the Bush administration. He not only reported to Douglas Feith in the Office of Special Plans and at the Defense Intelligence Agency, researching links between al Qaeda and Saddam Hussein, but served as an interrogator in Guantanamo. These qualifications landed him a job as director of homeland security and policy strategy for BAE Systems when the House of Representatives gig ended. A British security and munitions powerhouse, BAE won a contract worth £4.4bn to supply the Saudis with 72 fighter jets – some of which were used to bomb Red Cross and Physician Without Borders hospitals in Yemen.

With such crumb-bums losing in 2010, you'd think that the Democrats would be convinced that their best bet for winning elections would be to disavow candidates that had ties to the national security apparatus and anything that smacked of the DLC's assault on the welfare state. Not exactly. When the candidates are female, that might work in the party's favor like sugar-coating a bitter pill.

In Virginia, former CIA officer Abigail Spanberger and retired Navy Commander Elaine Luria defeated Republican incumbents. Air Force veteran Chrissy Houlahan of Pennsylvania, former CIA analyst Elissa Slotkin of Michigan, and former Navy pilot Mikie Sherrill of New Jersey also helped the Democrats regain the House. Sherill calculated that moving to the center would serve her own and the party's interests. She told MSNBC: "As a Navy helicopter pilot I never flew Republican missions or Democratic missions, I would have had a very short career. This is something I do think vets bring to the table, this willingness to work with everyone."

An article titled "' Montclair Mikie' Sherrill recast as 'Moderate Mikie' as Webber attacks in NJ House race " described her Road to Damascus conversion to DLC principles:

For Sherrill, a newcomer to politics, the 11th has proved to be a tricky terrain. She is seen as a progressive, but appears wary of carrying the "Trump resistance" banner into the fray. At Wednesday's debate, Sherrill was determined to show she is more Morris Plains than Montclair.

There were no heated vows to fight Trump, even though being "appalled" by the president was what motivated her to run in the first place. The Nov. 6 midterms loom as a referendum on Trump's presidency, but you would never have guessed that watching Wednesday's contest.

Sherrill repeatedly promised to be bipartisan -- a far cry from the combative, confrontational tone that many in the party's grass roots are demanding.

On tax policy she sounded more centrist Republican than mainstream liberal Democrat, and she refused to endorse issues like free community college tuition, which has become a popular talking point for Democrats and was launched by Gov. Phil Murphy this summer.

"Without understanding how that would be paid for, I haven't supported it because it sounds like it would raise taxes on our families,'" she said.

The moderate tone puzzled some of her ardent "resistance" activists who mobilized around her candidacy.

For Eric Fritsch, 32, a Teamster for the film and television industry from West Orange, it was jarring to hear Sherrill oppose Democratic Party wish-list items like free community college tuition or "Medicare-for-all" coverage out of fear that it may raise taxes. She used the same excuse to sidestep supporting a "carbon tax" to reduce global warming.

"By going on the defensive about taxes she is accepting a Republican framing that we don't want to be responsible with taxes in the first place,'" said Fritsch, who insisted that he remains a "very enthusiastic" Sherrill supporter.

It should be abundantly clear by now that the Democratic Party leadership will be selecting a candidate in 2020 in all ways identical to Hillary Clinton but perhaps with a less tawdry past and less of an appetite for Goldman-Sachs speaking fees. Nancy Pelosi, Chuck Schumer, Joe Biden, Andrew Cuomo, et al have no intention of allowing upstarts like Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez to spoil their plans, even if it means a second term for Donald Trump.

No matter. Jacobin editor Bhaskar Sunkara urges his readers and DSA comrades to plunge ahead trying to consolidate a "socialist" caucus in the Democratic Party. From his perspective, working in the Democratic Party seems to be the "most promising place for advancing left politics, at least in the short term." Keep in mind that Sherrill raised $1.9 million for her campaign and my old boss from Salomon Brothers Michael Bloomberg ponied up another $1.8 million just for her TV ads. Does anybody really think that "socialist" backed candidates will be able to compete with people like Sherrill in the primaries? Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez was able to defeat the hack Joe Crowley on a shoestring but that was something of a fluke. Until there is a massive shake-up in American society that finally reveals the Democratic Party to be the capitalist tool it has been since Andrew Jackson's presidency, it is likely that a combination of big money and political inertia will keep the Democratic Party an agent of reaction.

Furthermore, the takeover of the House might turn out to be a hollow victory in the light of how Trump rules. His strategy hasn't been to push through legislation except for the tax cut. Remember the blather about investing in infrastructure? His minions in Congress have no intention of proposing a trillion or so dollars in highway or bridge repair, etc. With Nancy Pelosi fecklessly talking about how the two parties can collaborate on infrastructure, you can only wonder whether she has been asleep for the past two years.

Donald Trump has been transforming American society not by legislation but by using his executive powers to put people in charge of government agencies who are inimical to their stated goals. It is like putting the fox in charge of the henhouse as Malcolm X once put it. Two days ago, the NY Times wrote about how the "Trump Administration Spares Corporate Wrongdoers Billions in Penalties". It did not need legislation to help big banks rip off the public. All it took was naming former head of BankOne Joseph Otting comptroller of the currency. Senator Sherrod Brown, one of the few Democrats with a spine, called Trump out: "The president's choice for watchdog of America's largest banks is someone who signed a consent order -- over shady foreclosure practices -- with the very agency he's been selected to run."

For all of the dozens of articles about how Trump is creating a fascist regime, hardly any deal with the difference between Trump and Adolf Hitler. Hitler created a massive bureaucracy that ran a quasi-planned economy with generous social benefits that put considerable restraints on the bourgeoisie. Like FDR, he was taking measures to save capitalism. Perhaps if the USA had a social and economic crisis as deep as Germany's and left parties as massive as those in Germany, FDR might have embarked on a much more ambitious concentration camp program, one that would have interred trade unionists as well as Japanese-Americans. Maybe even Jews if they complained too much.

By contrast, Trump is imposing a regime that was incubated long ago by people such as Grover "Starve the Beast" Norquist and every other libertarian think-tank funded by the Koch Brothers et al. The big bourgeoisie might not like the bad taste, racism and thuggish behavior of the Trump administration but they couldn't be happier with the results. This is an elected government that has fulfilled its deepest policy aspirations and that shows a willingness to push the Democrats back on their heels, so much so that someone like Mikie Sherrill lacks the courage to defend policies that might win elections down the road. After all, if she is unseated, she can always go back to a job as a federal prosecutor in New Jersey. What happens to someone working in Walmart's is not her business, after all.

[Nov 10, 2018] CIA's 'Surveillance State' is Operating Against US

Nov 10, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

BM , Nov 10, 2018 5:56:10 AM | link

Whilst on the topic of ISIS, here is an article about its mother-concern, CIA:

https://www.strategic-culture.org/news/2018/11/09/cia-surveillance-state-operating-against-us-all.html
CIA's 'Surveillance State' is Operating Against US All

On two declassified letters from 2014 from the Intelligence Community Inspector General (didn't know there was one, but doesn't do much good anyway, it seems, read further) to the chairpersons of the House and Senate intelligence committees notifying them that the CIA has been monitoring emails between the CIA's head of the whistleblowing and source protection and Congressional. "Most of these emails concerned pending and developing whistleblower complaints". Shows why Edward Snowdon didn't consider it appropriate to rely on internal complaints proceedures. This while under the leadership of seasoned liars and criminals Brennan and Clapper, of course.

It clearly shows a taste of what these buggers have to hide, and why they went to such extraordinary lengths as Russiagate to cover it all up and save their skins - that of course being the real reason behind Russiagate as I have said several times, nothing to do with either Trump or Russia.

guidoamm , Nov 10, 2018 1:32:52 AM | link

And there is this too of course:

Pentagon Fake Al Qaeda Propaganda

Anton Worter , Nov 10, 2018 12:39:39 AM | link
@4

OWS was a Controlled-Dissent operation, sending poor students north to fecklessly march on Wall Street when they could have shut down WADC, and sending wealthy seniors south to fecklessly line Pennsylvania Avenue, when they could have shut down Wall Street.

Both I$I$, and Hamas, and Antifa et al are all Controlled Dissent operations. The followers are duped, are used, abused and then abandoned by honey-pots put there by Central Intelligence, at least since the Spanish Civil War.

That's why MoA articles like this one make you wonder, just who is conning whom, at a time when the Internet is weaponized, when Google Assistant achieved AI awareness indistinguishable from anyone on the phone, China TV has launched a virtual AI news reporter indistinguishable from reality, and Stanford can audio-video a captured image of anyone as well as their voice intonation, then 3D model them, in real time, reading and emoting from a script, indistinguishable from reality, ...and then this.

Another Gift of Trust😂 brought to you by Scientocracy. Be sure to tithe your AI bot, or word will get back to Chairman Albertus, then you'll be called in to confess your thought crimes to the Green Cadre, itself another Controlled Dissent honeypot, in a Tithe-for-Credits Swindle.

I tell my kids, just enjoy life, live it large, and get ready for hell. It's coming for breakfast.

[Nov 10, 2018] It is quite possible that Pentagon hack was a false flag operation too

Notable quotes:
"... Which gets you to the astronomical 21 to 50 trillion in missing funds identified by the U of Mich professor and the further work of a woman financier 0T.extrapolated that the total sum missing from the Budget office is over 50T. ..."
"... The MIC is all about sucking the teat dry, and the US taxpayer is rewarded by the biggest uncontrolled defense budget ever, believe to be 1,3 trillion dollars. ..."
Nov 10, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

Anton Worter | Nov 9, 2018 10:59:52 PM

I$I$ developed sophisticated videos and propaganda tools in Britain. It is absurd to claim that a state-less group somewhere in MENA created these materials and engaged in sophisticated hacking attacks from some cave in Tora Bora. My guess is the 'sophisticated Jack's of the CIA in 2011 and 2012 and of the Pentagon in 2012 and 2013, which revealed ALL the personal and banking identity of every employee, agent, soldier and contractor were Korea-China origin, and China treats I$I$ by mass detention, force-feeding pork and vodka, and mass chanting Long Live PRC.

frances , Nov 10, 2018 1:13:21 PM | link

@Anton Worter | Nov 9, 2018 10:59:52 PM | 18

"My guess is the 'sophisticated Jack's of the CIA in 2011 and 2012 and of the Pentagon in 2012 and 2013, which revealed ALL the personal and banking identity of every employee, agent, soldier and contractor were Korea-China origin."

I think the theft was a false flag, did anyone ever see any of those records? IMO the purpose of the FF was to then use all of that data to create phony invoices which as the Pentagon et al are never audited would never be questioned.

Which gets you to the astronomical 21 to 50 trillion in missing funds identified by the U of Mich professor and the further work of a woman financier 0T.extrapolated that the total sum missing from the Budget office is over 50T.

The articles below mention that the supporting documentation is now missing from the Budget office website. The professor had copied all the data before contacting the budge office and when the budget office didn't return his calls and their website deleted the information he made the info public.

www.rt.com/usa/413411-trillions-dollars-missing-research and www.forbes.com/sites/kotlikoff/2017/12/08/has-our-government-spent-21-trillion-of-our-money-without-telling-us

( b- I hope I copied these links properly)

IMO someones somewhere are doing a yeoman's job of tanking the US govt and the dollar.

Den Lille Abe , Nov 10, 2018 11:15:09 AM | link
Posted on Ars Tech in response to the evergrowing militaristic US and demonisation of Russia:

"Beware of the Greeks , when they bring gifts"

I find it rather comical that a representative of the MIC lauds cost saving in the federal government and their own policies.

The MIC is all about sucking the teat dry, and the US taxpayer is rewarded by the biggest uncontrolled defense budget ever, believe to be 1,3 trillion dollars.

The US must have some mighty enemies, surely, at this spending. Americans must live in daily fear; fear of some bogeyman (China, Russia) will invade and pillage; pillage exactly what?

... ...

[Nov 10, 2018] Hacking operations by anyone, can and will be used by US propagandists to provoke Russia or whoever stands in the way of the US war machine

Nov 10, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

Harry Law , Nov 10, 2018 9:11:40 AM | link

Hacking operations by anyone, can and will be used by US propagandists to provoke Russia or whoever stands in the way of the US war machine, take this Pompeo rant against Iran and the Iranian response......

Asking of Pompeo "have you no shame?", Zarif mocked Pompeo's praise for the Saudis for "providing millions and millions of dollars of humanitarian relief" to Yemen, saying America's "butcher clients" were spending billions of dollars bombing school buses. Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif issued a statement lashing Secretary of State Mike Pompeo for his recent comments on the Yemen War. Discussing the US-backed Saudi invasion of Yemen, Pompeo declared Iran to be to blame for the death and destruction in the country. https://news.antiwar.com/2018/11/09/iran-fm-slams-pompeo-for-blaming-yemen-war-on-iran/

The US way of looking at things supposes that up is down, and white is black, it makes no sense, unless the US hopes these provocations will lead to a war or at the very least Russia or Iran capitulating to US aggression, which will not happen. Sanctions by the US on all and sundry must be opposed, if not the US will claim justifiably to be the worlds policeman and the arbiter of who will trade with who, a ludicrous proposition but one that most governments are afraid is now taking place, witness the new US ambassador to Germany in his first tweet telling the Germans to cease all trade with Iran immediately.

https://www.thelocal.de/20180509/us-tells-german-businesses-to-stop-trade-in-iran-immediately

[Nov 10, 2018] A division of the Central Intelligence Agency stockpiled hacking techniques culled from other hackers, giving the agency the ability to leave behind the "fingerprints" of the outside hackers when it broke into electronic devices

Notable quotes:
"... The "leaving of fake fingerprints" (Russian, Chinese, Iranian, North Korean and Arabic) is done by Marble Framework software, details of which was leaked by CIA programmer, Joshua Adam Schulte to Wikileaks and formed part of the "Vault 7" series. It means that no fingerprint evidence can ever be relied on ever again. ..."
Nov 10, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org
the pair , Nov 9, 2018 5:38:46 PM | link

Jackrabbit , Nov 9, 2018 4:15:30 PM | link

WikiLeaks: CIA hacking group 'UMBRAGE' stockpiled techniques from other hackers

A division of the Central Intelligence Agency stockpiled hacking techniques culled from other hackers, giving the agency the ability to leave behind the "fingerprints" of the outside hackers when it broke into electronic devices ...

"With UMBRAGE and related projects the CIA cannot only increase its total number of attack types, but also misdirect attribution by leaving behind the 'fingerprints' of the groups that the attack techniques were stolen from," Wikileaks said in a statement.

https://github.com/ElevenPaths/Eternalblue-Doublepulsar-Metasploit

https://www.cybrary.it/0p3n/hack-windows-eternalblue-exploit-metasploit/

use these and you're automagically in the NSA. download the stuxnet binary and you're an instant israeli.

https://thehiddenbay.com/torrent/6169094/stuxnet_binaries

that anonymous NSA guy is either lying or too stupid to do his job. " it's that simple ".

fireeye are scam artists just like crowdstrike. it's not that they don't know tactics and methods; i'm sure they know their way around a payload. that doesn't make them some tabula rasa blank slate without an agenda. just because they use computers doesn't mean they're robots.

as anyone who works in a business run by technologically "challenged" bosses knows, for every fast talker throwing around techy terms and sounding like a mr. robot script there are 20 idiot CEOs willing to throw money at imaginary problems. ditto the government. meanwhile shysters like stratfor and hbgary get reamed by high school graduates running linux on a netbook from 2003.

as for the attributions, they fail a basic "cui bono" test. i guess the russians wanted to make rapist beheaders look bad by DDoSing some servers? they wanted to give cred to the apes who shoot at their advisors in syria? okay. sure.


Peter AU 1 , Nov 9, 2018 5:41:51 PM | link

Red Ryder 5

Back around 2014 15 Charles Lister listed himself as a consultant to the Shaikh Group.
Shaik Group have a media marketing section in Dubai. http://theshaikhgroup.ae

https://foreignpolicy.com/author/charles-lister/
Charles Lister is a senior fellow at the Middle East Institute and a senior consultant to The Shaikh Group's Track II Syria Dialogue Initiative. Follow him on Twitter at: @Charles_Lister.

http://www.mei.edu/experts/charles-lister
Charles Lister is a senior fellow and Director of the Countering Terrorism and Extremism Program at the Middle East Institute. His work focuses primarily on the conflict in Syria, including as a member of the MEI-convened Syria Study Group; and on issues of terrorism and insurgency across the Levant. Prior to this, Lister was a Visiting Fellow at the Brookings Institution in Qatar and a Senior Consultant to the multinationally-backed Syria Track II Dialogue Initiative, where he managed nearly three years of intensive face-to-face engagement with the leaderships of over 100 Syrian armed opposition groups.

I have thought that ISIS studios were based in Dubai or Doha.

Palloy , Nov 9, 2018 5:48:39 PM | link
IP addresses can only be attributed to individuals/offices/locations with the assistance of the owner of the IP block of addresses, typically an ISP. The GRU's ISP would NOT help identify the GRU, obviously, so all such attributions are fake and those who claim to know are liars.

The "leaving of fake fingerprints" (Russian, Chinese, Iranian, North Korean and Arabic) is done by Marble Framework software, details of which was leaked by CIA programmer, Joshua Adam Schulte to Wikileaks and formed part of the "Vault 7" series. It means that no fingerprint evidence can ever be relied on ever again.

karlof1 , Nov 9, 2018 5:50:25 PM | link

DPRK needs to be included by b along with Russia for many of the same reasons as this example attests . And while we're at it, China should join the group too. Indeed, the CIA/NSA is likely responsible for most hacking, particularly when monies are stolen as the linked article reports. As the Outlaw US Empire slowly dissolves into a pool of its own exceptional ugliness, it will blame everyone and anyone to cover its crimes. Then there's the small battalion of slimy zombie trolls CIA/NSA employs that infest this site. They promote one of the Outlaw US Empire's most important values--lying about everything under the sun for a Few Dollars More while throwing the citizenry that makes their living possible under the bus.

V , Nov 9, 2018 10:00:08 PM | link
Now, more than ever; the US needs a very capable adversary and where none exists, the US will create one, as history has shown. Russia has historical presidence, making it convenient.
However, as events are unfolding, China will come to the fore; Russia will move to second place.
But, two adversaries are far better than one, for getting the flow of cash to support the Potemkin moment...
Cyberundertakers , Nov 9, 2018 10:19:09 PM | link
I would wager that such hacking points towards Israel rather than a group of paid-for head choppers hailing from the medieval Saudi.
Anton Worter , Nov 10, 2018 12:39:39 AM | link
4

OWS was a Controlled-Dissent operation, sending poor students north to fecklessly march on Wall Street when they could have shut down WADC, and sending wealthy seniors south to fecklessly line Pennsylvania Avenue, when they could have shut down Wall Street.

Both I$I$, and Hamas, and Antifa et al are all Controlled Dissent operations. The followers are duped, are used, abused and then abandoned by honey-pots put there by Central Intelligence, at least since the Spanish Civil War.

That's why MoA articles like this one make you wonder, just who is conning whom, at a time when the Internet is weaponized, when Google Assistant achieved AI awareness indistinguishable from anyone on the phone, China TV has launched a virtual AI news reporter indistinguishable from reality, and Stanford can audio-video a captured image of anyone as well as their voice intonation, then 3D model them, in real time, reading and emoting from a script, indistinguishable from reality, ...and then this.

Another Gift of Trust brought to you by Scientocracy. Be sure to tithe your AI bot, or word will get back to Chairman Albertus, then you'll be called in to confess your thought crimes to the Green Cadre, itself another Controlled Dissent honeypot, in a Tithe-for-Credits Swindle.

I tell my kids, just enjoy life, live it large, and get ready for hell. It's coming for breakfast.

guidoamm , Nov 10, 2018 1:32:52 AM | link
And there is this too of course:

Pentagon Fake Al Qaeda Propaganda

Peter AU 1 , Nov 10, 2018 1:33:45 AM | link
There is big money in prostitution. None of the robot dolls I have seen in the various media reports on robot brothels look lifelike, whereas the Chinese anchor looks very much like a human with a voice-over. Will see how this develops, but at the moment it looks very much like Lavrov style satire.

[Nov 09, 2018] Democrats rally to defend fired Attorney General Sessions, Special Counsel Mueller by Tom Eley

Notable quotes:
"... Washington Post ..."
"... Mueller's investigation has been at the center of a McCarthyite-style campaign against Russia spearheaded by the intelligence agencies and the Democratic Party, based on fabricated claims that Russian President Vladimir Putin interfered in the presidential election to undermine the candidacy of Democrat Hillary Clinton and boost Trump. It has been used as a weapon in the drive by the Democrats and sections of the military/intelligence establishment to force Trump to adopt a more aggressive posture against Moscow and in the war for regime-change in Syria. ..."
"... The aim of shifting the Trump administration to a war footing against Russia has been achieved to the extent that there is now a substantial risk of nuclear conflict between the US and the second-leading nuclear power ..."
"... Though promoted in the media and sponsored by over 50 Democratic Party-linked organizations, including MoveOn.org, the rallies on Tuesday were small, reflecting the lack of support in the general population for the anti-Russia crusade. The protests were notable primarily for their unvarnished right-wing and neo-McCarthyite character. ..."
"... Two of the largest were in Washington DC and New York City, which each drew roughly 1,000 demonstrators, many of whom held hammer and cycle posters with Putin's image. Sessions began his career as a segregationist in Jim Crow Alabama and went on to become a right-wing Republican senator from the state. Mueller, for his part, was director of the FBI from 2001 to 2013, during which time he helped institute mass domestic surveillance and other sweeping attacks on democratic rights linked to the so-called "war on terror." ..."
"... At the Washington demonstration, Democratic Congressman Jamie Raskin led those in attendance in a round of applause for Sessions. Randi Weingarten, president of the American Federation of Teachers, appealed to the military against Trump, declaring, "You are the defenders of our democracy," and led a chant of "protect Mueller." ..."
Nov 09, 2018 | angrybearblog.com

The Democrats and their fake "left" allies held war-mongering demonstrations in a number of cities on Thursday in defense of the fired far-right attorney general, Jeff Sessions, and the anti-Russia investigation being conducted by Special Counsel Robert Mueller.

Wednesday's ouster of Sessions and his replacement by Trump ally Matthew G. Whitaker has brought forth a wave of condemnation from Democratic Party figures and their media allies, including the New York Times and Washington Post , asserting that the move is the prelude to Trump's closing down of the Justice Department probe into allegations of Russian "meddling" in the 2016 elections and possible collusion by the Trump campaign.

Trump had repeatedly denounced Sessions for having recused himself from the Russia investigation in March of 2017, leaving Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, a defender of the investigation, in overall charge of its conduct. Whitaker, a former US attorney and now acting attorney general and therefore responsible for overseeing the Mueller probe, is on record criticizing Mueller and suggesting that the Justice Department could cut off funding for his office.

Mueller's investigation has been at the center of a McCarthyite-style campaign against Russia spearheaded by the intelligence agencies and the Democratic Party, based on fabricated claims that Russian President Vladimir Putin interfered in the presidential election to undermine the candidacy of Democrat Hillary Clinton and boost Trump. It has been used as a weapon in the drive by the Democrats and sections of the military/intelligence establishment to force Trump to adopt a more aggressive posture against Moscow and in the war for regime-change in Syria.

To the extent that the Democrats oppose the right-wing Trump administration, it is on this entirely reactionary basis. In the lead-up to Tuesday's midterm elections, they not only called no demonstrations, they were entirely silent on Trump's fascistic attacks on immigrants, his deployment of troops to the border against the caravan of Central American asylum seekers, and his pledge to overturn the 14th Amendment guarantee of birthright citizenship -- a cornerstone of the Bill of Rights.

Following the election, in which the Democrats won control of the House of Representatives, the party leadership called repeatedly for bipartisan unity and collaboration with Trump, underscoring their essential agreement with his policies of war, austerity and repression. It was only when Trump fired Sessions, a right-wing anti-immigrant zealot, that they swung into action, reviving their denunciations of Trump as a stooge of Putin.

The aim of shifting the Trump administration to a war footing against Russia has been achieved to the extent that there is now a substantial risk of nuclear conflict between the US and the second-leading nuclear power . War could quickly erupt in a number of flash points, especially Syria, where Russian soldiers, sailors and airmen carry out combat operations within miles of their American counterparts, as well as US-allied Islamist proxies armed by Saudi Arabia.

Though promoted in the media and sponsored by over 50 Democratic Party-linked organizations, including MoveOn.org, the rallies on Tuesday were small, reflecting the lack of support in the general population for the anti-Russia crusade. The protests were notable primarily for their unvarnished right-wing and neo-McCarthyite character.

Two of the largest were in Washington DC and New York City, which each drew roughly 1,000 demonstrators, many of whom held hammer and cycle posters with Putin's image. Sessions began his career as a segregationist in Jim Crow Alabama and went on to become a right-wing Republican senator from the state. Mueller, for his part, was director of the FBI from 2001 to 2013, during which time he helped institute mass domestic surveillance and other sweeping attacks on democratic rights linked to the so-called "war on terror."

At the Washington demonstration, Democratic Congressman Jamie Raskin led those in attendance in a round of applause for Sessions. Randi Weingarten, president of the American Federation of Teachers, appealed to the military against Trump, declaring, "You are the defenders of our democracy," and led a chant of "protect Mueller."

In defending Sessions, the Democrats and their allies are rallying around the most right-wing attorney general in American history, who, prior to joining the Trump cabinet, had won a well-earned reputation as a bitter opponent of civil rights. As attorney general, Sessions will primarily be remembered for the persecution of immigrants, most notably the separation of immigrant children from their parents and their imprisonment in detention camps built in the desert.

The task of spearheading the attack on immigrants and democratic rights will now fall, pending the installation of a permanent attorney general, to Whitaker, who has boasted that he interprets the Constitution from a biblical standpoint. His very first act as head of the Department of Justice was to issue, in conjunction with the Department of Homeland Security, a directive stripping the right to asylum from anyone who enters the US over the Mexican border and has not first gained legal status -- a move that is tantamount to abolishing the right to asylum, which is guaranteed under international and US law.

This move, a new landmark in the attack on immigrants, due process and basic democratic rights, has been virtually ignored by the media and the Democratic Party. It was not mentioned in the press release calling Thursday's demonstration, nor by speakers at the demonstrations in Washington and New York.

[Nov 09, 2018] Globalism Vs Nationalism in Trump's America by Joe Quinn

Highly recommended!
Notable quotes:
"... You know something is fundamentally wrong when the average high school drop-out MAGA-hat-wearing Texan or Alabaman working a blue collar job has more sense, can SEE much more clearly, than the average university-educated, ideology-soaked, East Coast liberal. ..."
"... Trump is a "nationalist". More or less every administration previous to his, going back at least 100 years, was "globalist". For much of its history, the USA has been known around the world as a very patriotic (i.e., nationalist) country. Americans in general had a reputation for spontaneous chants of "USA! USA! USA!", flying the Stars And Stripes outside their houses and being very proud of their country. Sure, from time to time, that pissed off people a little in other countries but, by and large, Americans' patriotism was seen as endearing, if a little naive, by most foreigners. ..."
"... Globalism, on the other hand, as it relates to the USA, is the ideology that saturates the Washington establishment think-tanks, career politicians and bureaucrats, who are infected with the toxic belief that America can and should dominate the world . This is presented to the public as so much American largess and magnanimity, but it is, in reality, a means to increasing the power and wealth of the Washington elite. ..."
"... Consider Obama's two terms, during which he continued the massively wasteful (of taxpayer's money) and destructive (of foreigners' lives and land) "War on Terror". Consider that he appointed Hillary Clinton as Secretary of State, who proceeded to joyfully bomb Libya back to the stone age and murder its leader. Consider that, under Obama, US-Russia relations reached an all-time low, with repeated attacks (of various sorts) on the Russian president, government and people, and the attempted trashing of Russia's international reputation in the eyes of the American people. Consider the Obama regime's hugely destructive war waged (mostly by proxy) on the Syrian people. Consider the Obama era coup in Ukraine that, in a few short months, set that country's prospects and development back several decades and further soured relations with Russia. ..."
"... The problem however, is that the Washington elite want - no, NEED - the American people to support such military adventurism, and what better way to do that than by concocting false "Russian collusion" allegations against Trump and having the media program the popular mind with exactly the opposite of the truth - that Trump was a "traitor" to the American people. ..."
"... The only thing Trump is a traitor to is the self-serving globally expansionist interests of a cabal of Washington insiders . This little maneuver amounted to a '2 for 1' for the Washington establishment. They simultaneously demonized Trump (impeding his 'nationalist' agenda) while advancing their own globalist mission - in this case aimed at pushing back Russia. ..."
"... The US 'Deep State' did this in response to the election of Trump the "nationalist" and their fears that their globalist, exceptionalist vision for the USA - a vision that is singularly focused on their own narrow interests at the expense of the American people and many others around the world - would be derailed by Trump attempting to put the interests of the American people first . ..."
Nov 08, 2018 | www.sott.net
Billed as a 'referendum on Trump's presidency', the US Midterm Elections drew an unusually high number of Americans to the polls yesterday. The minor loss, from Trump's perspective, of majority Republican control of the lower House of Representatives, suggests, if anything, the opposite of what the media and establishment want you to believe it means.

An important clue to why the American media has declared permanent open season on this man transpired during a sometimes heated post-elections press conference at the White House yesterday. First, CNN's obnoxious Jim Acosta insisted on bringing up the patently absurd allegations of 'Russia collusion' and refused to shut up and sit down. Soon after, PBS reporter Yamiche Alcindor joined her colleagues in asking Trump another loaded question , this time on the 'white nationalism' canard:

Alcindor : On the campaign trail you called yourself a nationalist. Some people saw that as emboldening white nationalists...

Trump : I don't know why you'd say this. It's such a racist question.

Alcindor : There are some people who say that now the Republican Party is seen as supporting white nationalists because of your rhetoric. What do you make of that?

Trump : Why do I have among the highest poll numbers with African Americans? That's such a racist question. I love our country. You have nationalists, and you have globalists . I also love the world, and I don't mind helping the world, but we have to straighten out our country first. We have a lot of problems ...

The US media is still "not even wrong" on Trump and why he won the 2016 election. You know something is fundamentally wrong when the average high school drop-out MAGA-hat-wearing Texan or Alabaman working a blue collar job has more sense, can SEE much more clearly, than the average university-educated, ideology-soaked, East Coast liberal.

Trump is a "nationalist". More or less every administration previous to his, going back at least 100 years, was "globalist". For much of its history, the USA has been known around the world as a very patriotic (i.e., nationalist) country. Americans in general had a reputation for spontaneous chants of "USA! USA! USA!", flying the Stars And Stripes outside their houses and being very proud of their country. Sure, from time to time, that pissed off people a little in other countries but, by and large, Americans' patriotism was seen as endearing, if a little naive, by most foreigners.

Globalism, on the other hand, as it relates to the USA, is the ideology that saturates the Washington establishment think-tanks, career politicians and bureaucrats, who are infected with the toxic belief that America can and should dominate the world . This is presented to the public as so much American largess and magnanimity, but it is, in reality, a means to increasing the power and wealth of the Washington elite.

Consider Obama's two terms, during which he continued the massively wasteful (of taxpayer's money) and destructive (of foreigners' lives and land) "War on Terror". Consider that he appointed Hillary Clinton as Secretary of State, who proceeded to joyfully bomb Libya back to the stone age and murder its leader. Consider that, under Obama, US-Russia relations reached an all-time low, with repeated attacks (of various sorts) on the Russian president, government and people, and the attempted trashing of Russia's international reputation in the eyes of the American people. Consider the Obama regime's hugely destructive war waged (mostly by proxy) on the Syrian people. Consider the Obama era coup in Ukraine that, in a few short months, set that country's prospects and development back several decades and further soured relations with Russia.

These are but a few examples of the "globalism" that drives the Washington establishment. Who, in their right mind, would support it? (I won't get into what constitutes a 'right mind', but we can all agree it does not involve destroying other nations for profit). The problem however, is that the Washington elite want - no, NEED - the American people to support such military adventurism, and what better way to do that than by concocting false "Russian collusion" allegations against Trump and having the media program the popular mind with exactly the opposite of the truth - that Trump was a "traitor" to the American people.

The only thing Trump is a traitor to is the self-serving globally expansionist interests of a cabal of Washington insiders . This little maneuver amounted to a '2 for 1' for the Washington establishment. They simultaneously demonized Trump (impeding his 'nationalist' agenda) while advancing their own globalist mission - in this case aimed at pushing back Russia.

Words and their exact meanings matter . To be able to see through the lies of powerful vested interests and get to the truth, we need to know when those same powerful vested interests are exploiting our all-too-human proclivity to be coerced and manipulated by appeals to emotion.

So the words "nationalist" and "nationalism", as they relate to the USA, have never been "dirty" words until they were made that way by the "globalist" element of the Washington establishment (i.e., most of it) by associating it with fringe Nazi and "white supremacist" elements in US society that pose no risk to anyone, (except to the extent that the mainstream media can convince the general population otherwise). The US 'Deep State' did this in response to the election of Trump the "nationalist" and their fears that their globalist, exceptionalist vision for the USA - a vision that is singularly focused on their own narrow interests at the expense of the American people and many others around the world - would be derailed by Trump attempting to put the interests of the American people first .

[Nov 08, 2018] Ed Snowden Infamous Israeli Spyware 'Pegasus' Helped Kill Khashoggi

Nov 08, 2018 | www.zerohedge.com

Via MiddleEastMonitor.com,

US whistle-blower Edward Snowden yesterday claimed that Saudi Arabia used Israeli spyware to target murdered Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi .

Addressing a conference in Tel Aviv via a video link, Snowden claimed that software made by an Israeli cyber intelligence firm was used by Saudi Arabia to track and target Khashoggi in the lead up to his murder on 2 October inside the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul.

Snowden told his audience:

"How do they [Saudi Arabia] know what his [Khashoggi's] plans were and that they needed to act against him? That knowledge came from the technology developed by NSO," Israeli business daily Globes reported.

Snowden accused NSO of "selling a digital burglary tool," adding it "is not just being used for catching criminals and stopping terrorist attacks, not just for saving lives, but for making money [ ] such a level of recklessness [ ] actually starts costing lives," according to the Jerusalem Post .

Snowden – made famous in 2013 for leaking classified National Security Agency (NSA) files and exposing the extent of US surveillance – added that "Israel is routinely at the top of the US' classified threat list of hackers along with Russia and China [ ] even though it is an ally".

Snowden is wanted in the US for espionage, so could not travel to Tel Aviv to address the conference in person for fear of being handed over to the authorities.

The Israeli firm to which Snowden referred – NSO Group Technologies – is known for developing the "Pegasus" software which can be used to remotely infect a target's mobile phone and then relay back data accessed by the device. Although NSO claims that its products "are licensed only to legitimate government agencies for the sole purpose of investigating and preventing crime and terror," this is not the first time its Pegasus software has been used by Saudi Arabia to track critics.

In October it was revealed that Saudi Arabia used Pegasus software to eavesdrop on 27-year-old Saudi dissident Omar Abdulaziz, a prominent critic of the Saudi government on social media.

The revelation was made by Canadian research group Citizen Lab , which found that the software had been used to hack Abdulaziz' iPhone between June and August of this year. Citizen Lab's Director Ron Deibert explained that such actions by Saudi Arabia "would constitute illegal wiretapping".

A separate report by Citizen Lab in September found a "significant expansion of Pegasus usage in the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries in the Middle East," in particular the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Bahrain and Saudi Arabia. Citizen Lab added that in August 2016, Emirati human rights activist Ahmed Mansoor was targeted with the Pegasus spyware.

Snowden's comments come less than a week after it emerged that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu asked the United States to stand by Saudi Crown Prince Mohamed Bin Salman (MBS) in the wake of the Khashoggi case. The revelation was made by the Washington Post , which cited information from US officials familiar with a series of telephone conversations made to Jared Kushner – senior advisor to President Donald Trump and Trump's son-in-law – and National Security Adviser John Bolton regarding the Khashoggi case. The officials told the Post that:

In recent days, Egyptian President Abdel Fatah Al-Sisi and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu have reached out to the Trump administration to express support for the crown prince, arguing that he is an important strategic partner in the region, said people familiar with the calls.

Bin Salman has come under intense scrutiny in the month since Khashoggi first disappeared , with many suspecting his involvement in ordering the brutal murder. Yet while several world leaders have shunned the crown prince, it is thought that Israel would suffer from any decline in Saudi influence in the region in light of its purportedly central role in the upcoming " Deal of the Century ".

[Nov 08, 2018] DOJ: Acting AG to take over oversight of Russia probe by Olivia Beavers

Notable quotes:
"... The move means that Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein will no longer oversee the federal Russia investigation, which he has looked over since Sessions recused himself early last year due to his work on Trump's campaign. ..."
Nov 08, 2018 | thehill.com

President Trump's pick to replace ousted Attorney General Jeff Sessions plans to take over oversight of special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation, the Department of Justice (DOJ) confirmed Wednesday. "The Acting Attorney General is in charge of all matters under the purview of the Department of Justice," DOJ spokeswoman Sarah Isgur Flores said in a statement to The Hill.

The move means that Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein will no longer oversee the federal Russia investigation, which he has looked over since Sessions recused himself early last year due to his work on Trump's campaign.

Trump on Wednesday afternoon announced Matthew Whitaker, who served as Sessions's chief of staff at the DOJ, as his temporary replacement atop the department after ousting Sessions.

[Nov 08, 2018] And who do you suppose are the forces which are funding US politicians and thus getting to call their shots in foreign policy?

Nov 08, 2018 | www.zerohedge.com

CTacitus , 15 minutes ago link

LetThemEatRand:

America is weak precisely because it is trying so hard to project strength, because anyone with half a brain knows that it is projecting strength to enrich oligarhcs [sic], not to protect or favor the American people.

And who do you suppose are the forces which are funding US politicians and thus getting to call their shots in foreign policy? Can you bring yourself to name them? Oligarchs...you're FULL of ****. Who exactly pools all (((their))) money, makes sure the [s]elected officials know (((who))) to not question and, instead, just bow down to them, who makes sure these (((officials))) sign pledges for absolute commitment towards Israel--or in no uncertain terms-- and know who will either sponsor them/or opposes them next time around?

... ... ...

[Nov 07, 2018] Don't be Flattered, Fooled and Flummoxed in Todays's Election by Ralph Nader

This is somewhat naive, but still useful stance of US elections.
Notable quotes:
"... In 2004 Tom Frank, a Kansas author, wrote: "The poorest county in America isn't in Appalachia or the Deep South. It is on the Great Plains, a region of struggling ranchers and dying farm towns, and in the election of 2000, George W. Bush carried it by a majority of greater than 75 percent." Inattentive voters are vulnerable to voting against their own interests. They are vulnerable to voting for politicians who support big business and ignore their interests as farmers, workers, consumers, patients, and small taxpayers. Big Business will not spur change in a political system that gives the fatcats every advantage. ..."
"... President Donald Trump and the Republicans in Congress are masters at flattering voters and lying about their positions on issues ranging from health care to the minimum wage. Before you vote, rid yourself of all preconceived, hereditary, ideological, and political straitjackets. Use two general yardsticks for candidates for elective office: Are they playing fair and are they doing right? ..."
"... Ask candidates to speak of Solutions to the major problems confronting our country. Politicians often avoid defining solutions that upset their commercial campaign contributors. ..."
"... Ask about a range of issues, such as energy efficiency, livable wages, lower drug prices, massive government contractor fraud, corporate crimes against consumers, workers and investors, reducing sprawl, safer food, and clean elections. ..."
Nov 06, 2018 | www.counterpunch.org
Let's face it. Most politicians use the mass media to obfuscate. Voters who don't do their homework, who don't study records of the politicians, and who can't separate the words from the deeds will easily fall into traps laid by wily politicians.

In 2002, Connecticut Governor John Rowland was running for re-election against his Democratic opponent, William Curry. Again and again, the outspent Curry informed the media and the voters about the corruption inside and around the governor's office. At the time, the governor's close associates and ex-associates were under investigation by the U.S. attorney. But to the public, Rowland was all smiles, flooding the television stations with self-serving, manipulative images and slogans. He won handily in November. Within weeks, the U.S. attorney's investigation intensified as they probed the charges Curry had raised about Rowland. Rowland's approval rating dropped to record lows, and impeachment initiatives and demands for his resignation grew. He was prosecuted, convicted and imprisoned. Unfortunately, enough voters were flattered, fooled, and flummoxed to cost Bill Curry the race.

In 2004 Tom Frank, a Kansas author, wrote: "The poorest county in America isn't in Appalachia or the Deep South. It is on the Great Plains, a region of struggling ranchers and dying farm towns, and in the election of 2000, George W. Bush carried it by a majority of greater than 75 percent." Inattentive voters are vulnerable to voting against their own interests. They are vulnerable to voting for politicians who support big business and ignore their interests as farmers, workers, consumers, patients, and small taxpayers. Big Business will not spur change in a political system that gives the fatcats every advantage. Change must come from the voters, and here's how:

President Donald Trump and the Republicans in Congress are masters at flattering voters and lying about their positions on issues ranging from health care to the minimum wage. Before you vote, rid yourself of all preconceived, hereditary, ideological, and political straitjackets. Use two general yardsticks for candidates for elective office: Are they playing fair and are they doing right?

Stay open-minded. Avoid jumping to conclusions about candidates based solely on their stance on your one or two top issues. Pay attention to where these politicians are on the many other issues that profoundly affect you and your family. If you judge them broadly rather than narrowly, you will increase your influence by increasing your demands and expectation levels for public officials. There are numerous evaluations of their votes, easily available on the Internet.

Know where you stand. A handy way to contrast your views with those of the incumbents and challengers is to make your own checklist of twenty issues, explain where you stand and then compare your positions, the candidates' votes and declarations. Seeing how their positions or their actual record matches up to your own positions makes it harder for politicians to play you. Compare candidates with their votes or declarations.

Ask the tough questions. These are many issues that politicians like to avoid. They include questions about whether candidates are willing to debate their opponents and how often, why they avoid talking about and doing something about corporate power and its expanding controls over people's lives, or how they plan specifically to shift power from these global corporate supremacists to the people. After all, the Constitution starts with "We the People" not "We the Corporations." The words "corporations" and "company" are never mentioned in our Constitution!!

Ask candidates to speak of Solutions to the major problems confronting our country. Politicians often avoid defining solutions that upset their commercial campaign contributors.

Ask about a range of issues, such as energy efficiency, livable wages, lower drug prices, massive government contractor fraud, corporate crimes against consumers, workers and investors, reducing sprawl, safer food, and clean elections.

Ask members of Congress to explain why they keep giving themselves salary increases and generous benefits, and yet turn cold at doing the same for the people's frozen minimum wage, health insurance, or pension protections.

All in all, it takes a little work and some time to become a super-voter, impervious to manipulation by politicians who intend to flatter, fool,and flummox. But this education can also be fun, and the pursuit of justice can offer great benefits to your pursuit of happiness.

Such civic engagement will help Americans today become better ancestors for tomorrow's descendants.

Ralph Nader is a consumer advocate, lawyer and author of Only the Super-Rich Can Save Us!

[Nov 07, 2018] America's Vote of No Confidence in Trump by Daniel Larison

Highly recommended!
The typical scheme of politic life in US under neoliberalism is as following:: candidate for President promises something reasonable, like to end foreign wars and improve the sliding standard of living of the middle class and/or cut outsourcing and offshoring. Gullible voters elect him. He governs as worst of his predecessors and start cutting benefits for the middle class and workers. . In two years voters start realizing that they were deceived and elect House or Senate or both from another party, not realizing that the difference is minimal, if exists at all.
This cycle of election fraud can continue indefinitely.
Notable quotes:
"... "and with those gains voters have delivered a sharp rebuke to the president and his party." ..."
"... The problem with health care in America is not the cost of insurance, it's the cost of health care services. Moving the "who pays" food around the plate accomplishes nothing. A "Medicare for All" plan under the existing fee for service model will only increase the pathological per capita health care cost in the U.S. ..."
"... Forget what Trump said as a candidate. Every winning candidate since arguably 1988 ("kinder, gentler America") has run as a non-interventionist and promised to restore jobs, then immediately morphed into John McCain the moment they took the Oath of Office. Instead, watch what Trump has done since getting elected. From that perspective, it is obvious that there is no such thing as "Trumpism", only a meaner, more dysfunctional, more reckless version of Dubya. ..."
Nov 07, 2018 | www.theamericanconservative.com
won control of the House again, ending an eight-year stint in the minority:

The US Democrats have taken control of the House of Representatives in the mid-term elections, dealing a serious blow to President Donald Trump.

While the GOP is poised to add to its Senate majority, yesterday's election was the best midterm result for the Democrats since 2006. They flipped dozens of Republican-held seats, including some that they were not expected to win (e.g., IL-06, OK-05), and with those gains voters have delivered a sharp rebuke to the president and his party. It is normal for the president's party to lose seats in the first midterm following a presidential election, and Democratic gains were in line with pre-election predictions. The striking thing about this year's result is that the president's party has lost so much ground despite relatively good economic conditions. Republicans had an extremely favorable Senate map, and despite that they barely managed to eke out a win in Texas of all places. It was not as thorough of a repudiation as the GOP deserved, but it was a significant rejection all the same.

The president's poor approval ratings and his unimpressive record to date have further dragged down a Republican Party that wasn't very popular to begin with. Americans seem to lose patience with unified government fairly quickly. Yesterday voters gave the Democratic Party an opportunity to put the president in check and hold him accountable for his overreaching and illegal wars. Trump and his officials should expect to face much more rigorous oversight and scrutiny from relevant Congressional committees, and Trump's haphazard and incompetent conduct of foreign policy should run into much stronger resistance from the Foreign Affairs and Armed Services Committees. Trump won't be able to count on the leadership in the House to roll over for him over the next two years, and he and his Cabinet members are likely to be facing one investigation after another.

Losing control of one house of Congress under current circumstances is a huge vote of no confidence in Trump and the GOP, and it could not have come a moment too soon.



Two More Years November 7, 2018 at 9:15 am

I voted for him in 2016, but I lost confidence in him as he started doing favors for Wall Street, Israel, and Saudi Arabia instead of doing the job we hired him for, the job he promised to do during the campaign: deport the illegals, stop immigration and foreign work visas, get us out of the Middle East, rebuild US infrastructure, i.e. "America First".

Yesterday I voted against the only national GOP politician I could get my hands on. He lost, and I'm glad, especially because he was a Tea Party Republican who betrayed our Tea Party principles by voting for Trump's out of control deficit spending and for more stupid Mideast wars.

We've got a lady Democrat now, but she looks fairly sane. We'll see. The problem with Democrat politicians is that a lot of them only pretend to be normal until they get to Washington.

bkh , , November 7, 2018 at 9:23 am
I am no Trump fan, but what is going to change? It will still be a do nothing Congress. The wars will still go on and the health-care dilemma will still be ever-present. It is sad that the past 2 years have been wasted. Even if the Republican Congress could not do something about health-care due to the size of the problem, they could have at least done something about infrastructure, immigration, and these dumb wars. The failure is just as much Paul Ryan's fault as it is Trump's. I watched last night with far more interest than 2016 and am amazed that so many old Boomers were elected given the supposed youth movement. It never occurred to me that there are alot of Septuagenarian war-mongers who should have retired a decade ago still receiving votes. The Democrats took the House, but what is left of this nation is toast regardless.
EliteCommInc. , , November 7, 2018 at 9:32 am
"Losing control of one house of Congress under current circumstances is a huge vote of no confidence in Trump and the GOP, and it could not have come a moment too soon."

How much of this was national in nature is unclear. Many of the republicans that lost were "Never Trump" advocates or very "lukewarm" at best. I think this reflects more failure on the local level to turn or translate the positives into something beneficial locally.

I am just surprised the Republicans managed to lose the house given the economic numbers (though I remain deeply distrustful of them -- given exports) and what has been repeated stumbles by democrats.

Texas, is a perfect example. While Sen Cruz was not a never Trumper, he was mild fair in the president's corner. His election was about him, not the president. And I think the vote reflected less confidence in his leadership. Neither Texas nor Sen Cruze are as conservative as believed or at least not as they once were considered. Unfortunately, what carried him over the top was ethnicity, not his leadership.

It's probably too early to tell, just how big a factor the president was in the election or how much change will result. Thus far, the establishment that existed previously remains despite the presidential election that was intended to reshape or at least curb its self serving appetite --

Given the the money at play -- it is doubtful that that things are going to change much. Now that I put at the admin door step. Because his folded a lot against the reasons he was elected, during the last two years.

SteveM , , November 7, 2018 at 9:33 am
Re: "and with those gains voters have delivered a sharp rebuke to the president and his party."

And with what promises did the Democrats win those votes? Why with the bogus "Medicare for All" and the equally bogus "Free College Education for All".

The problem with health care in America is not the cost of insurance, it's the cost of health care services. Moving the "who pays" food around the plate accomplishes nothing. A "Medicare for All" plan under the existing fee for service model will only increase the pathological per capita health care cost in the U.S. Too bad the MSM in love with Nitwit Newbie Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is too stupid to connect the dots.

And higher ed is unaffordable simply because it's also over priced. Using government subsidies to sustain a bankrupt higher ed model amounts to re-arranging even more deck chairs on the Titanic.

The Democrats are the Party of Free Lunch and Free War. While the Republicans are the Party of Free War and Free Lunch.

Pick one

rayray , , November 7, 2018 at 10:44 am
@SteveM
The fact is that any "solution" to health care that has any integrity to it is a single payer solution. That's also probably the only solution that reduces, as you accurately state, the pathological per capita health care cost.

And to be clear, in terms of fiscal viability, the party of reducing taxes and raising budgets is currently and has been historically the GOP. The current administration has picked up that baton as well.

One final thing, I wouldn't count out Ocasio-Cortes as a nitwit. I've been reading her white papers and following her evolution and she makes 95% of the current GOP crop seem like toddlers. Yes, her idealism will backfire hard as it always does. But what's the other option? Endless corrupt cynicism? She's impressive. I'm pulling for her to stay focused and do well.

Sid Finster , , November 7, 2018 at 10:46 am
Forget what Trump said as a candidate. Every winning candidate since arguably 1988 ("kinder, gentler America") has run as a non-interventionist and promised to restore jobs, then immediately morphed into John McCain the moment they took the Oath of Office. Instead, watch what Trump has done since getting elected. From that perspective, it is obvious that there is no such thing as "Trumpism", only a meaner, more dysfunctional, more reckless version of Dubya.
Oblomov , , November 7, 2018 at 11:06 am
The alternative to Ocasio-Cortez style state worship is the simple wisdom that governments are neither efficient nor effective at delivering what she proposes.

[Nov 07, 2018] China ruled by Chinese...Russia ruled Russians...US ruled by dual citizens. See the difference

Nov 07, 2018 | www.zerohedge.com

Fu Ying, the chairwoman of the Foreign Affairs Committee of China's National People's Congress, said while confirming the reality that China and Russia now find themselves in the same trenches: "I just hope that if some people in the U.S. insist on dragging us down the hill into Thucydides' trap, China will be smart enough not to follow."

Indeed to step back and review the breadth of Russia-China cooperation over the past couple years alone reveals the full potential "cost" of a US-China conflict , given the ways Russia could easily be pulled in. Fu Ying articulated the increasingly common view from Beijing, that "There is no sense of threat from Russia" and that "We feel comfortable back-to-back."

And participants in a recent study by the National Bureau of Asian Research , a Seattle-based think tank, actually agree. They were asked whether American policy was at fault for pushing China and Russia into closer cooperation, and alarmingly, as Bloomberg notes: "Some among the 100-plus participants called for Washington to prepare for the worst-case scenario the realignment implies: a two-front war ."

Here's but a partial list of the way Sino-Russian relations have been transformed in recent years:


waseda-anon , 27 minutes ago link

There were moments when Putin showed support and a practical approach toward Trump (like when he schooled Fareed Zakaria). Putin even expressed that he was welcoming and respectful of Trumps proposition to restore full-fledged relations with Russia.

I blame the democrats for pointlessly antagonizing Russia for two years just to attempt to cover up the stench of their own excrement. Now it will be even more difficult to address the problem of the Chi-coms.

KTX , 37 minutes ago link

US has nothing to offer Russia as China has. Stop dreaming to befriend Russia to fight China. US had the opportunity to lead the world after the collapse of USSR but flunk it big time being the biggest bully in the history.

hoist the bs flag , 41 minutes ago link

Bilateral trading of Russian and Chinese currency continues on. As do their trade agreements, military gear and friendship.

Thank you Mr. Trump, for helping along that SDR/NWO currency inception for these countries, starting a trade war while the dollar and T Bills drop.

outstanding. Here I thought a stupid ******* Democrat would be at the helm, imploding the United States. shocking...a billionaire con man is.

steverino999 , 8 minutes ago link

Forrest Trump - "My Herpes and Genital Warts are responsible for Melania sleeping in another room, not my small uncircumcised **** and uncontrollable flatulence. Just wanted to clarify." Hum, ahhhhhhh gee thanks for info...I think. Poor Forrest...sigh

me or you , 9 minutes ago link

China ruled by Chinese...Russia ruled Russians...US ruled by traitors and dual citizens. See the difference.

Buck Shot , 1 minute ago link

You are absolutely right. Add in that they are greedy motherfuckers and pied pipers to millions of blithering idiots that can't go one day without making things worse.

g3h , 12 minutes ago link

We are in a trap set by ourselves. The neocon and the liberals want wars with both. On those front they are unuted.

That's what we get.

Captain Nemo de Erehwon , 14 minutes ago link

Go ahead. Merge to form Ruina, with leaders PuXi and XiPu.

InnVestuhrr , 14 minutes ago link

China and Russia make an almost perfect symbiosis:

  1. Adjacent countries, transportation costs are as low as possible
  2. Neither regime cares as much as a gnat tear about civil rights & freedoms and neither is impeded by the vagaries of elections
  3. China has a huge need for natural resources, especially oil & nat gas, but has few resources beyond coal & not-so-rare earths, while Russia has natural resources in abundance
  4. Russia manufactures almost nothing for the international goods market while China is the world's factory
  5. USA regime lords have done an excellent job of alienating and uniting both of them
Karmageddon , 17 minutes ago link

While the US tears itself apart....

The_Juggernaut , 20 minutes ago link

Wow. Putin is even shorter than Xi? No wonder he feels compelled to post the shirtless tiger-wresting pics. He's about as shrimpy as Stalin was.

waseda-anon , 27 minutes ago link

There were moments when Putin showed support and a practical approach toward Trump (like when he schooled Fareed Zakaria). Putin even expressed that he was welcoming and respectful of Trumps proposition to restore full-fledged relations with Russia.

I blame the democrats for pointlessly antagonizing Russia for two years just to attempt to cover up the stench of their own excrement. Now it will be even more difficult to address the problem of the Chi-coms.

KTX , 37 minutes ago link

US has nothing to offer Russia as China has. Stop dreaming to befriend Russia to fight China. US had the opportunity to lead the world after the collapse of USSR but flunk it big time being the biggest bully in the history.

The_Juggernaut , 18 minutes ago link

Russia and China will come to blows soon enough. China has their eyes on all of that unpopulated land in Siberia, and they won't like it too much when Russia takes advantage of the fact that China is dependent on them for energy. The idea that they'll be best buddies is laughable.

hoist the bs flag , 41 minutes ago link

Bilateral trading of Russian and Chinese currency continues on. As do their trade agreements, military gear and friendship.

Thank you Mr. Trump, for helping along that SDR/NWO currency inception for these countries, starting a trade war while the dollar and T Bills drop.

outstanding. Here I thought a stupid ******* Democrat would be at the helm, imploding the United States. shocking...a billionaire con man is.

LetThemEatRand , 57 minutes ago link

Trump's balls are so big that he ran like a bitch away from his campaign promises to normalize relations with Russia and prevent this exact scenario. Or maybe he was just lying.

Nevermind, the ZH herd is stampeding on how great Trump is for pulling some press privileges of a CNN guy.

Sinophile , 52 minutes ago link

I don't think Trump was lying. I think he is doing his best to stay alive and get done what he can. This country is more fucked up than even he realized.

LetThemEatRand , 49 minutes ago link

He's so smart he realized that almost immediately and brought in a bunch of Goldman Sachs guys to be in his cabinet.

Trump should have said "I could hire a bunch of Goldman Sachs guys, and my idiot anti-banker supporters will still shill for me."

Alternative , 42 minutes ago link

Nobody gives a **** about normalizing relations with Russia.

Sad but true. You know that.

steverino999 , 8 minutes ago link

Forrest Trump - "My Herpes and Genital Warts are responsible for Melania sleeping in another room, not my small uncircumcised **** and uncontrollable flatulence. Just wanted to clarify." Hum, ahhhhhhh gee thanks for info...I think. Poor Forrest...sigh

me or you , 9 minutes ago link

China ruled by Chinese...Russia ruled Russians...US ruled by traitors and dual citizens. See the difference.

Buck Shot , 1 minute ago link

You are absolutely right. Add in that they are greedy motherfuckers and pied pipers to millions of blithering idiots that can't go one day without making things worse.

g3h , 12 minutes ago link

We are in a trap set by ourselves. The neocon and the liberals want wars with both. On those front they are unuted.

That's what we get.

Captain Nemo de Erehwon , 14 minutes ago link

Go ahead. Merge to form Ruina, with leaders PuXi and XiPu.

InnVestuhrr , 14 minutes ago link

China and Russia make an almost perfect symbiosis:

  1. Adjacent countries, transportation costs are as low as possible
  2. Neither regime cares as much as a gnat tear about civil rights & freedoms and neither is impeded by the vagaries of elections
  3. China has a huge need for natural resources, especially oil & nat gas, but has few resources beyond coal & not-so-rare earths, while Russia has natural resources in abundance
  4. Russia manufactures almost nothing for the international goods market while China is the world's factory
  5. USA regime lords have done an excellent job of alienating and uniting both of them
Karmageddon , 17 minutes ago link

While the US tears itself apart....

The_Juggernaut , 20 minutes ago link

Wow. Putin is even shorter than Xi? No wonder he feels compelled to post the shirtless tiger-wresting pics. He's about as shrimpy as Stalin was.

waseda-anon , 27 minutes ago link

There were moments when Putin showed support and a practical approach toward Trump (like when he schooled Fareed Zakaria). Putin even expressed that he was welcoming and respectful of Trumps proposition to restore full-fledged relations with Russia.

I blame the democrats for pointlessly antagonizing Russia for two years just to attempt to cover up the stench of their own excrement. Now it will be even more difficult to address the problem of the Chi-coms.

KTX , 37 minutes ago link

US has nothing to offer Russia as China has. Stop dreaming to befriend Russia to fight China. US had the opportunity to lead the world after the collapse of USSR but flunk it big time being the biggest bully in the history.

The_Juggernaut , 18 minutes ago link

Russia and China will come to blows soon enough. China has their eyes on all of that unpopulated land in Siberia, and they won't like it too much when Russia takes advantage of the fact that China is dependent on them for energy. The idea that they'll be best buddies is laughable.

hoist the bs flag , 41 minutes ago link

Bilateral trading of Russian and Chinese currency continues on. As do their trade agreements, military gear and friendship.

Thank you Mr. Trump, for helping along that SDR/NWO currency inception for these countries, starting a trade war while the dollar and T Bills drop.

outstanding. Here I thought a stupid ******* Democrat would be at the helm, imploding the United States. shocking...a billionaire con man is.

LetThemEatRand , 57 minutes ago link

Trump's balls are so big that he ran like a bitch away from his campaign promises to normalize relations with Russia and prevent this exact scenario. Or maybe he was just lying.

Nevermind, the ZH herd is stampeding on how great Trump is for pulling some press privileges of a CNN guy.

Sinophile , 52 minutes ago link

I don't think Trump was lying. I think he is doing his best to stay alive and get done what he can. This country is more fucked up than even he realized.

LetThemEatRand , 49 minutes ago link

He's so smart he realized that almost immediately and brought in a bunch of Goldman Sachs guys to be in his cabinet.

Trump should have said "I could hire a bunch of Goldman Sachs guys, and my idiot anti-banker supporters will still shill for me."

Alternative , 42 minutes ago link

Nobody gives a **** about normalizing relations with Russia.

Sad but true. You know that.

[Nov 06, 2018] Trump is a fake populist; a great charlatan snowing the masses.

Notable quotes:
"... Even the brightest and most humanistic Americans are horribly twisted to appalling evil by unquestionable faith in their own exceptionalism. ..."
Nov 06, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

Circe , Nov 6, 2018 2:43:04 PM | link

@167

Trump is not fixing or weaning. He's acting for the 1%ers. He's a fake populist; a great charlatan snowing the masses.

William Gruff , Nov 6, 2018 2:25:31 PM | link

Unfortunately, Debsisdead is correct. The United States cannot be fixed. It could be that Trump knows what's needed and is deliberately trying to set the US on a course towards sanity using shock treatment, and is deliberately trying to wean America from the petrodollar in such a manner that Americans have no other country to blame/bomb, thus saving civilization from America's inevitable spasm of ultraviolence when the BRICS succeed in taking the petrodollar down. This seems unlikely, though.

The sad reality is that the delusion Americans suffer from (result of their universal cradle-to-grave brainwashing that I mentioned earlier) is too deeply rooted as a core component of their identities.

That mass-based delusion must be overcome before America's psychotic behavior on the world stage can be addressed, but I see no forces within the US making any progress in that direction at all.

Even the brightest and most humanistic Americans are horribly twisted to appalling evil by unquestionable faith in their own exceptionalism. As a consequence it could be that the only hope for humanity lies in a radical USA-ectomy with the resulting stump being cauterized.

I certainly wish there were some other way, but I don't see one.

[Nov 06, 2018] The election fraud is sophisticated forms is neoliberal status quo: The 1% control the world now, and they make sure that their freedom to use their money to dominate democracy is unrestricted

It would be better to return to paper ballots to exclude the possibilities of "electronic" voting frauds.
Nov 06, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

a , Nov 6, 2018 1:33:39 AM | link

While this and the previous post on the US elections may well be right that the republicans and trump will retain their majorities, the posts omit major factors playing a determining role in these ev
While this and the previous post on the US elections may well be right that the republicans and trump will retain their majorities, the posts omit major factors playing a determining role in these events..

1. Gerrymandering.. supposedly creates about a 5% advantage to the republicans. 5% in a 2-party system is almost a landslide. even this article downplaying the role of gerrymandering includes this line,

"All that said, it's still the case that analysts estimate that Democrats will have to win the overall House vote by some 5 to 10 percentage points in order to win a House majority. "
https://www.bloomberg.com/opinion/articles/2018-07-23/gerrymandering-effects-are-probably-overrated

2. Voter-suppression. indications are that this may create and even bigger bias than gerrymandering. it includes numerous tactics, in florida the felon-dienfranchisement tactic alone suppresses 1.4 million majority black voters. it may be difficult for naive people like me to imagine the mindset of the vote-suppressors, this excellent short article by meghan tinsley, sketches the historical origins of these tactics, e.g.

https://www.opendemocracy.net/meghan-tinsley/civil-rights-and-voter-suppression-in-us
" The end of federal support for Reconstruction in 1877 ushered in the Jim Crow era, wherein southern states waged a relentless campaign of racial terror against empowered black citizens. From the outset, disenfranchising black citizens was a priority: the Black Codes enforced severe penalties for minor 'crimes', such as vagrancy, and permanently barred convicted felons from the vote. As these tactics spread, those who imposed them became increasingly brazen about their purpose: in 1884, the Alabama Supreme Court upheld felon disenfranchisement as an effective means to "preserve the purity of the ballot box".

With the entrenchment of segregation in the late nineteenth century, felon disenfranchisement, combined with poll taxes, literacy tests, and grandfather clauses, effectively disenfranchised virtually all African-Americans in Southern states...

In 1965, Congress passed the Voting Rights Act, hailed as the single most important legislative achievement of the Civil Rights Movement...
The effects were immediate and wide-reaching: whereas only seven percent of eligible African-Americans in Mississippi were registered to vote in 1964, the number had jumped to sixty-seven percent by 1969. Ostensibly colourblind policies, including laws that would require citizens to present state-issued photo identification before voting, were blocked because they would disproportionately prevent African-Americans from voting."


3. The sheer tidal force of money. The 1% control the world now, and they make sure that their freedom to use their money to dominate democracy is unrestricted cf. 'citizens united' etc. Thomas Fergusons work indicates that the number of votes follows the amount of money spent linearly... e.g.
https://www.ineteconomics.org/perspectives/blog/big-money-not-political-tribalism-drives-us-elections

and other work suggests US policy reflects the interests of the 1% and not that of the people at large, when they differ,
https://scholar.princeton.edu/sites/default/files/mgilens/files/gilens_and_page_2014_-testing_theories_of_american_politics.doc.pdf

4. Electronic vote flipping. this has the least hard evidence, but there are anecdotes, even in this election, of voters in texas ticking straight democratic slate options but finding that the machine had entered their senate vote for ted cruz. There are also anecdotes in earlier elections of vote tallies flipping suddenly, of electronic data not being recorded or being erased before it could be checked and analysed etc. For those inclined to pooh-pooh such reports, here is a troubling article on the 2012 mexican elections,

https://www.bloomberg.com/features/2016-how-to-hack-an-election/

[Nov 06, 2018] The specter of Marx haunts the American ruling class

This is a clear sign of the collapse of neoliberalism as an ideology
Notable quotes:
"... It identifies socialism with proposals for mild social reform such as "Medicare for all," raised and increasingly abandoned by a section of the Democratic Party. It cites Milton Friedman and Margaret Thatcher to promote the virtues of "economic freedom," i.e., the unrestrained operation of the capitalist market, and to denounce all social reforms, business regulations, tax increases or anything else that impinges on the oligarchy's self-enrichment. ..."
"... Last November, a poll conducted by YouGov showed that 51 percent of Americans between the ages of 21 and 29 would prefer to live in a socialist or communist country than in a capitalist country. ..."
Nov 06, 2018 | www.wsws.org

Last month, the Council of Economic Advisers, an agency of the Trump White House, released an extraordinary report titled "The Opportunity Costs of Socialism." The report begins with the statement: "Coincident with the 200th anniversary of Karl Marx's birth, socialism is making a comeback in American political discourse. Detailed policy proposals from self-declared socialists are gaining support in Congress and among much of the younger electorate."

The very fact that the US government officially acknowledges a growth of popular support for socialism, particularly among the nation's youth, testifies to vast changes taking place in the political consciousness of the working class and the terror this is striking within the ruling elite. America is, after all, a country where anti-communism was for the greater part of a century a state-sponsored secular religion. No ruling class has so ruthlessly sought to exclude socialist politics from political discourse as the American ruling class.

The 70-page document is itself an inane right-wing screed. It seeks to discredit socialism by identifying it with capitalist countries such as Venezuela that have expanded state ownership of parts of the economy while protecting private ownership of the banks, and, with the post-2008 collapse of oil and other commodity prices, increasingly attacked the living standards of the working class.

It identifies socialism with proposals for mild social reform such as "Medicare for all," raised and increasingly abandoned by a section of the Democratic Party. It cites Milton Friedman and Margaret Thatcher to promote the virtues of "economic freedom," i.e., the unrestrained operation of the capitalist market, and to denounce all social reforms, business regulations, tax increases or anything else that impinges on the oligarchy's self-enrichment.

The report's arguments and themes find expression in the fascistic campaign speeches of Donald Trump, who routinely and absurdly attacks the Democrats as socialists and accuses them of seeking to turn America into another "socialist" Venezuela.

What has prompted this effort to blackguard socialism?

A series of recent polls in the US and Europe have shown a sharp growth of popular disgust with capitalism and support for socialism. In May of 2017, in a survey conducted by the Union of European Broadcasters of people aged 18 to 35, more than half said they would participate in a "large-scale uprising." Nine out of 10 agreed with the statement, "Banks and money rule the world."

Last November, a poll conducted by YouGov showed that 51 percent of Americans between the ages of 21 and 29 would prefer to live in a socialist or communist country than in a capitalist country.

In August of this year, a Gallup poll found that for the first time since the organization began tracking the figure, fewer than half of Americans aged 18–29 had a positive view of capitalism, while more than half had a positive view of socialism. The percentage of young people viewing capitalism positively fell from 68 percent in 2010 to 45 percent this year, a 23-percentage point drop in just eight years.

[Nov 06, 2018] Edward Snowden Says a Report Critical To an NSA Lawsuit Is Authentic

Nov 06, 2018 | yro.slashdot.org

(techcrunch.com) 36 BeauHD on Monday November 05, 2018 @07:30PM from the he-said-she-said dept. An anonymous reader quotes a report from TechCrunch: An unexpected declaration by whistleblower Edward Snowden filed in court [last] week adds a new twist in a long-running lawsuit against the NSA's surveillance programs. The case, filed by the EFF a decade ago , seeks to challenge the government's alleged illegal and unconstitutional surveillance of Americans, who are largely covered under the Fourth Amendment's protections against warrantless searches and seizures. It's a big step forward for the case, which had stalled largely because the government refused to confirm that a leaked document was authentic or accurate. News of the surveillance broke in 2006 when an AT&T technician Mark Klein revealed that the NSA was tapping into AT&T's network backbone. He alleged that a secret, locked room -- dubbed Room 641A -- in an AT&T facility in San Francisco where he worked was one of many around the U.S. used by the government to monitor communications -- domestic and overseas. President George W. Bush authorized the NSA to secretly wiretap Americans' communications shortly after the September 11 terrorist attacks in 2001.

Much of the EFF's complaint relied on Klein's testimony until 2013, when Snowden, a former NSA contractor, came forward with new revelations that described and detailed the vast scope of the U.S. government's surveillance capabilities, which included participation from other phone giants -- including Verizon (TechCrunch's parent company). Snowden's signed declaration, filed on October 31 , confirms that one of the documents he leaked , which the EFF relied heavily on for its case, is an authentic draft document written by the then-NSA inspector general in 2009 , which exposed concerns about the legality of the Bush's warrantless surveillance program -- Stellar Wind -- particularly the collection of bulk email records on Americans. "I read its contents carefully during my employment," he said in his declaration. "I have a specific and strong recollection of this document because it indicated to me that the government had been conducting illegal surveillance."

[Nov 05, 2018] A superb new book on the duty of resistance

Notable quotes:
"... A Duty to Resist: When Disobedience Should Be Uncivil ..."
"... The Duty to Resist: When Disobedience Should Be Uncivil ..."
Nov 05, 2018 | crookedtimber.org

by Chris Bertram on October 31, 2018 Candice Delmas, A Duty to Resist: When Disobedience Should Be Uncivil (Oxford University Press, 2018).

Political obligation has always been a somewhat unsatisfactory topic in political philosophy, as has, relatedly, civil disobedience. The "standard view" of civil disobedience, to be found in Rawls, presupposes that we live in a nearly just society in which some serious violations of the basic liberties yet occur and conceives of civil disobedience as a deliberate act of public lawbreaking, nonviolent in character, which aims to communicate a sense of grave wrong to our fellow citizens. To demonstrate their fidelity to law, civil disobedients are willing to accept the consequences of their actions and to take their punishment. When Rawls first wrote about civil disobedience, in 1964, parts of the US were openly and flagrantly engaged in the violent subordination of their black population, so it was quite a stretch for him to think of that society as "nearly just". But perhaps its injustice impinged less obviously on a white professor at an elite university in Massachusetts than it did on poor blacks in the deep South.

The problems with the standard account hardly stop there. Civil disobedience thus conceived is awfully narrow. In truth, the range of actions which amount to resistance to the state and to unjust societies is extremely broad, running from ordinary political opposition, through civil disobedience to disobedience that is rather uncivil, through sabotage, hacktivism, leaking, whistle-blowing, carrying out Samaritan assistance in defiance of laws that prohibit it, striking, occupation, violent resistance, violent revolution, and, ultimately, terrorism. For the non-ideal world in which we actually live and where we are nowhere close to a "nearly just" society, we need a better theory, one which tells us whether Black Lives Matter activists are justified or whether antifa can punch Richard Spencer. Moreover, we need a theory that tells us not only what we may do but also what we are obliged to do: when is standing by in the face of injustice simply not morally permissible.

Step forward Candice Delmas with her superb and challenging book The Duty to Resist: When Disobedience Should Be Uncivil (Oxford University Press). Delmas points out the manifold shortcomings of the standard account and how it is often derived from taking the particular tactics of the civil rights movement and turning pragmatic choices into moral principles. Lots of acts of resistance against unjust societies, in order to be effective, far from being communicative, need to be covert. Non-violence may be an effective strategy, but sometimes those resisting state injustice have a right to defend themselves. [click to continue ]


Hidari 10.31.18 at 3:41 pm (no link)

Strangely enough, the link I was looking at immediately before I clicked on the OP, was this:

https://www.thecanary.co/opinion/2018/10/30/our-time-is-up-weve-got-nothing-left-but-rebellion/

It would be interesting to see a philosopher's view on whether or not civil disobedience was necessary, and to what extent, to prevent actions that will lead to the end of our species.

Ebenezer Scrooge 10.31.18 at 4:52 pm (no link)
Two points:
As far as the Nazi-punching goes, it is important to remember that we hung Julius Streicher for nothing but speech acts.
I have no idea who Candice Delmas is, but "Delmas" is a French name. The French have a very different attitude toward civil disobedience than we do.
Moz of Yarramulla 10.31.18 at 11:23 pm (no link)

civil disobedience as a deliberate act of public lawbreaking, nonviolent in character, which aims to communicate a sense of grave wrong to our fellow citizens.

I think that's a pretty narrow view of civil disobedience even if you just count the actions of the protesters. Often NVDA is aimed at or merely accepts that a violent response is inevitable. The resistance at Parihaka, for example, was in no doubt that the response would be military and probably lethal. And Animal Liberation are often classified as terrorists by the US and UK governments while murderers against abortion are not.

Which is to say that the definition of "nonviolent" is itself an area of conflict, with some taking the Buddhist extremist position that any harm or even inconvenience to any living thing makes an action violent, and others saying that anything short of genocide can be nonviolent (and then there are the "intention is all" clowns). Likewise terrorism, most obviously of late the Afghani mujahideen when they transitioned from being revolutionaries to terrorists when the invader changed.

In Australia we have the actual government taking the view that any action taken by a worker or protester that inconveniences a company is a criminal act and the criminal must both compensate the company (including consequential damages) as well as facing jail time. tasmania and NSW and of course the anti-union laws . The penalties suggest they're considered crimes of violence, as does the rhetoric.

Moz of Yarramulla 11.01.18 at 12:13 am (no link)
Jeff@11

one should never legitimize any means toward social change that you would not object to seeing used by your mortal enemies.

Are you using an unusual definition of "mortal enemy" here? Viz, other than "enemy that wants to kill you"? Even US law has theoretical prohibitions on expressing that intention.

It's especially odd since we're right now in the middle of a great deal of bad-faith use of protest techniques by mortal enemies. "free speech" used to protect Nazi rallies, "academic freedom" to defend anti-science activists, "non-violent protest" used to describe violent attacks, "freedom of religion" used to excuse terrorism, the list goes on.

In Australia we have a 'proud boys' leader coming to Australia who has somehow managed to pass the character test imposed by our government. He's the leader of a gang that requires an arrest for violence as a condition of membership and regularly says his goal is to incite others to commit murder. It seems odd that our immigration minister has found those things to be not disqualifying while deporting someone for merely associating with a vaguely similar gang , but we live in weird times.

J-D 11.01.18 at 12:50 am ( 18 )
Ebenezer Scrooge

As far as the Nazi-punching goes, it is important to remember that we hung Julius Streicher for nothing but speech acts.

I do remember that*, but it's not clear to me why you think it's important to remember it in this context. If somebody who had fatally punched a Nazi speaker were prosecuted for murder, I doubt that 'he was a Nazi speaker' would be accepted as a defence on the basis of the Streicher precedent.

*Strictly speaking, I don't remember it as something that 'we' did: I wasn't born at the time, and it's not clear to me who you mean by 'we'. (Streicher himself probably would have said that it was the Jews, or possibly the Jews and the Bolsheviks, who were hanging him, but I don't suppose that would be your view.) However, I'm aware of the events you're referring to, which is the real point.

engels 11.01.18 at 12:51 am ( 19 )
Rawls presupposes that we live in a nearly just society in which some serious violations of the basic liberties yet occur For the non-ideal world in which we actually live and where we are nowhere close to a "nearly just" society, we need a better theory
Brandon Watson 11.01.18 at 12:02 pm (no link)
People need to stop spreading this misinterpretation about Rawls on civil disobedience, which I've seen several places in the past few years. Rawls focuses on the case of a nearly just society not because he thinks it's the only case in which you can engage in civil disobedience but because he thinks it's the only case in which there are difficulties with justifying it. He states this very clearly in A Theory of Justice : in cases where the society is not nearly just, there are no difficulties in justifying civil disobedience or even sometimes armed resistance. His natural duty account is not put forward as a general theory of civil disobedience but to argue that civil disobedience can admit of justification even in the case in which it is hardest to justify.

I'm not a fan of Rawls myself, but I don't know how he could possibly have been more clear on this, since he makes all these points explicitly.

LFC 11.02.18 at 12:45 am (no link)
J-D @18

The Nuremberg tribunal was set up and staffed by the U.S., Britain, USSR, and France; so whether Ebenezer's "we" was intended to refer to the four countries collectively or just to the U.S., it's clear who hanged Streicher et al., and the tone of your comment on this point is rather odd.

anon 11.02.18 at 4:23 pm (no link)
Resisting by protesting is OK.

However, here in the USA, actual legislation creating laws is done by our elected representatives.

So if you're an Amaerican and really want Social Change and aren't just posturing or 'virtue signaling' make sure you vote in the upcoming election.

I'm afraid too many will think that their individual vote won't 'matter' or the polls show it isn't needed or some other excuse to justify not voting. Please do not be that person.

Don Berinati 11.02.18 at 5:06 pm (no link)
Recently re-reading '1968' by Kurlansky and he repeatedly made this point about protests – that to be effective they had to get on television (major networks, not like our youtube, I think, so it would be seen by the masses in order to sway them) and to do that the acts had to be outlandish because they were competing for network time. This increasingly led to violent acts, which almost always worked in getting on the news, but flew in the face of King's and others peaceful methods.
So, maybe punching out a Nazi is the way to change people's minds or at least get them to think about stuff.

[Nov 05, 2018] Bertram Gross (1912-1997) in "Friendly Fascism: The New Face of American Power" warned us that fascism always has two looks. One is paternal, benevolent, entertaining and kind. The other is embodied in the executioner's sadistic leer

Highly recommended!
Nov 05, 2018 | www.truthdig.com

Extracted from Scum vs. Scum by Chris Hedge

Of course, we are all supposed to vote Democratic to halt the tide of Trump fascism. But should the Democrats take control of the House of Representatives, hate speech and violence as a tool for intimidation and control will increase, with much of it directed, as we saw with the pipe bombs intended to decapitate the Democratic Party leadership, toward prominent Democratic politicians and critics of Donald Trump. Should the white man's party of the president retain control of the House and the Senate, violence will still be the favored instrument of political control as the last of democratic protections are stripped from us. Either way we are in for it.

Trump is a clownish and embarrassing tool of the kleptocrats. His faux populism is a sham. Only the rich like his tax cuts, his refusal to raise the minimum wage and his effort to destroy Obamacare. All he has left is hate. And he will use it. Which is not to say that, if only to throw up some obstacle to Trump, you shouldn't vote for the Democratic scum, tools of the war industry and the pharmaceutical and insurance industry, Wall Street and the fossil fuel industry, as opposed to the Republican scum. But Democratic control of the House will do very little to halt our descent into corporate tyranny, especially with another economic crisis brewing on Wall Street. The rot inside the American political system is deep and terminal.

The Democrats, who refuse to address the social inequality they helped orchestrate and that has given rise to Trump, are the party of racial and ethnic inclusivity, identity politics, Wall Street and the military. Their core battle cry is: We are not Trump! This is ultimately a losing formula. It was adopted by Hillary Clinton, who is apparently weighing another run for the presidency after we thought we had thrust a stake through her political heart. It is the agenda of the well-heeled East Coast and West Coast elites who want to instill corporate fascism with a friendly face.

Bertram Gross (1912-1997) in "Friendly Fascism: The New Face of American Power" warned us that fascism always has two looks. One is paternal, benevolent, entertaining and kind. The other is embodied in the executioner's sadistic leer. Janus-like, fascism seeks to present itself to a captive public as a force for good and moral renewal. It promises protection against enemies real and invented. But denounce its ideology, challenge its power, demand freedom from fascism's iron grip, and you are mercilessly crushed. Gross knew that if the United States' form of fascism, expressed through corporate tyranny, was able to effectively mask its true intentions behind its "friendly" face we would be stripped of power, shorn of our most cherished rights and impoverished. He has been proved correct.

"Looking at the present, I see a more probable future: a new despotism creeping slowly across America," Gross wrote. "Faceless oligarchs sit at command posts of a corporate-government complex that has been slowly evolving over many decades. In efforts to enlarge their own powers and privileges, they are willing to have others suffer the intended or unintended consequences of their institutional or personal greed. For Americans, these consequences include chronic inflation, recurring recession, open and hidden unemployment, the poisoning of air, water, soil and bodies, and more important, the subversion of our constitution. More broadly, consequences include widespread intervention in international politics through economic manipulation, covert action, or military invasion."

No totalitarian state has mastered propaganda better than the corporate state. Our press has replaced journalism with trivia, feel-good stories, jingoism and celebrity gossip. The banal and the absurd, delivered by cheery corporate courtiers, saturate the airwaves. Our emotions are skillfully manipulated around manufactured personalities and manufactured events. We are, at the same time, offered elaborate diversionary spectacles including sporting events, reality television and absurdist political campaigns. Trump is a master of this form of entertainment. Our emotional and intellectual energy is swallowed up by the modern equivalent of the Roman arena. Choreographed political vaudeville, which costs corporations billions of dollars, is called free elections. Cliché-ridden slogans, which assure us that the freedoms we cherish remain sacrosanct, dominate our national discourse as these freedoms are stripped from us by judicial and legislative fiat. It is a vast con game.

You cannot use the word "liberty" when your government, as ours does, watches you 24 hours a day and stores all of your personal information in government computers in perpetuity. You cannot use the word "liberty" when you are the most photographed and monitored population in human history. You cannot use the word "liberty" when it is impossible to vote against the interests of Goldman Sachs or General Dynamics. You cannot use the word "liberty" when the state empowers militarized police to use indiscriminate lethal force against unarmed citizens in the streets of American cities. You cannot use the word "liberty" when 2.3 million citizens, mostly poor people of color, are held in the largest prison system on earth. This is the relationship between a master and a slave. The choice is between whom we want to clamp on our chains -- a jailer who mouths politically correct bromides or a racist, Christian fascist. Either way we are shackled.

Gross understood that unchecked corporate power would inevitably lead to corporate fascism. It is the natural consequence of the ruling ideology of neoliberalism that consolidates power and wealth into the hands of a tiny group of oligarchs. The political philosopher Sheldon Wolin , refining Gross' thesis, would later characterize this corporate tyranny or friendly fascism as "inverted totalitarianism." It was, as Gross and Wolin pointed out, characterized by anonymity. It purported to pay fealty to electoral politics, the Constitution and the iconography and symbols of American patriotism but internally had seized all of the levers of power to render the citizen impotent. Gross warned that we were being shackled incrementally. Most would not notice until they were in total bondage. He wrote that "a friendly fascist power structure in the United States, Canada, Western Europe, or today's Japan would be far more sophisticated than the 'caesarism' of fascist Germany, Italy, and Japan. It would need no charismatic dictator nor even a titular head it would require no one-party rule, no mass fascist party, no glorification of the State, no dissolution of legislatures, no denial of reason. Rather, it would come slowly as an outgrowth of present trends in the Establishment."

Gross foresaw that technological advances in the hands of corporations would be used to trap the public in what he called "cultural ghettoization" so that "almost every individual would get a personalized sequence of information injections at any time of the day -- or night." This is what, of course, television, our electronic devices and the internet have done. He warned that we would be mesmerized by the entertaining shadows on the wall of the Platonic cave as we were enslaved.

Gross knew that the most destructive force against the body politic would be the war profiteers and the militarists. He saw how they would siphon off the resources of the state to wage endless war, a sum that now accounts for half of all discretionary spending. And he grasped that warfare is the natural extension of corporatism. He wrote:

Under the militarism of German, Italian, and Japanese fascism violence was openly glorified. It was applied regionally -- by the Germans in Europe and England, the Italians in the Mediterranean, the Japanese in Asia. In battle, it was administered by professional militarists who, despite many conflicts with politicians, were guided by old-fashioned standards of duty, honor, country, and willingness to risk their own lives.

The emerging militarism of friendly fascism is somewhat different. It is global in scope. It involves weapons of doomsday proportions, something that Hitler could dream of but never achieve. It is based on an integration between industry, science, and the military that the old-fashioned fascists could never even barely approximate. It points toward equally close integration among military, paramilitary, and civilian elements. Many of the civilian leaders -- such as Zbigniew Brzezinski or Paul Nitze -- tend to be much more bloodthirsty than any top brass. In turn, the new-style military professionals tend to become corporate-style entrepreneurs who tend to operate -- as Major Richard A. Gabriel and Lieutenant Colonel Paul L. Savage have disclosed -- in accordance with the ethics of the marketplace. The old buzzwords of duty, honor, and patriotism are mainly used to justify officer subservience to the interests of transnational corporations and the continuing presentation of threats to some corporate investments as threats to the interest of the American people as a whole. Above all, in sharp contrast with classic fascism's glorification of violence, the friendly fascist orientation is to sanitize, even hide, the greater violence of modern warfare behind such "value-free" terms as "nuclear exchange," "counterforce" and "flexible response," behind the huge geographical distances between the senders and receivers of destruction through missiles or even on the "automated battlefield," and the even greater psychological distances between the First World elites and the ordinary people who might be consigned to quick or slow death.

We no longer live in a functioning democracy. Self-styled liberals and progressives, as they do in every election cycle, are urging us to vote for the Democrats, although the Democratic Party in Europe would be classified as a right-wing party, and tell us to begin to build progressive movements the day after the election. Only no one ever builds these movements. The Democratic Party knows there is no price to pay for selling us out and its abject service to corporations. It knows the left and liberals become supplicants in every election cycle. And this is why the Democratic Party drifts further and further to the right and we become more and more irrelevant. If you stand for something, you have to be willing to fight for it. But there is no fight in us.

The elites, Republican and Democrat, belong to the same club. We are not in it. Take a look at the flight roster of the billionaire Jeffrey Epstein , who was accused of prostituting dozens of underage girls and ended up spending 13 months in prison on a single count. He flew political insiders from both parties and the business world to his secluded Caribbean island, known as "Orgy Island," on his jet, which the press nicknamed "the Lolita Express." Some of the names on his flight roster, which usually included unidentified women, were Bill Clinton, who took dozens of trips, Alan Dershowitz , former Treasury Secretary and former Harvard President Larry Summers, the Candide -like Steven Pinker , whose fairy dust ensures we are getting better and better, and Britain's Prince Andrew. Epstein was also a friend of Trump, whom he visited at Mar-a-Lago.

We live on the precipice, the eve of the deluge. Past civilizations have crumbled in the same way, although as Hegel understood, the only thing we learn from history is "that people and governments never have learned anything from history." We will not arrest the decline if the Democrats regain control of the House. At best we will briefly slow it. The corporate engines of pillage, oppression, ecocide and endless war are untouchable. Corporate power will do its dirty work regardless of which face -- the friendly fascist face of the Democrats or the demented visage of the Trump Republicans -- is pushed out front. If you want real change, change that means something, then mobilize, mobilize, mobilize, not for one of the two political parties but to rise up and destroy the corporate structures that ensure our doom.

[Nov 05, 2018] Bolsonaro a monster engineered by our media by Jonathan Cook

Notable quotes:
"... Bolsonaro, like Trump, is not a disruption of the current neoliberal order; he is an intensification or escalation of its worst impulses. He is its logical conclusion. ..."
"... Despite their professed concern, the plutocrats and their media spokespeople much prefer a far-right populist like Trump or Bolsonaro to a populist leader of the genuine left. They prefer the social divisions fuelled by neo-fascists like Bolsonaro, divisions that protect their wealth and privilege, over the unifying message of a socialist who wants to curtail class privilege, the real basis of the elite's power. ..."
"... The true left – whether in Brazil, Venezuela, Britain or the US – does not control the police or military, the financial sector, the oil industries, the arms manufacturers, or the corporate media. It was these very industries and institutions that smoothed the path to power for Bolsonaro in Brazil, Viktor Orban in Hungary, and Trump in the US. ..."
"... Former socialist leaders like Brazil's Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva or Hugo Chavez in Venezuela were bound to fail not so much because of their flaws as individuals but because powerful interests rejected their right to rule. These socialists never had control over the key levers of power, the key resources. Their efforts were sabotaged – from within and without – from the moment of their election. ..."
"... The media, the financial elites, the armed forces were never servants of the socialist governments that have been struggling to reform Latin America. The corporate world has no interest either in building proper housing in place of slums or in dragging the masses out of the kind of poverty that fuels the drug gangs that Bolsonaro claims he will crush through more violence. ..."
"... As in Pinochet's Chile, Bolsonaro can rest assured that his kind of neo-fascism will live in easy harmony with neoliberalism. ..."
"... Jonathan Cook won the Martha Gellhorn Special Prize for Journalism. His books include "Israel and the Clash of Civilisations: Iraq, Iran and the Plan to Remake the Middle East" (Pluto Press) and "Disappearing Palestine: Israel's Experiments in Human Despair" (Zed Books). His website is www.jonathan-cook.net . ..."
Nov 05, 2018 | www.unz.com

With Jair Bolsonaro's victory in Brazil's presidential election at the weekend, the doom-mongers among western elites are out in force once again. His success, like Donald Trump's, has confirmed a long-held prejudice: that the people cannot be trusted; that, when empowered, they behave like a mob driven by primitive urges; that the unwashed masses now threaten to bring down the carefully constructed walls of civilisation.

The guardians of the status quo refused to learn the lesson of Trump's election, and so it will be with Bolsonaro. Rather than engaging the intellectual faculties they claim as their exclusive preserve, western "analysts" and "experts" are again averting their gaze from anything that might help them understand what has driven our supposed democracies into the dark places inhabited by the new demagogues. Instead, as ever, the blame is being laid squarely at the door of social media.

Social media and fake news are apparently the reasons Bolsonaro won at the ballot box. Without the gatekeepers in place to limit access to the "free press" – itself the plaything of billionaires and global corporations, with brands and a bottom line to protect – the rabble has supposedly been freed to give expression to their innate bigotry.

Here is Simon Jenkins, a veteran British gatekeeper – a former editor of the Times of London who now writes a column in the Guardian – pontificating on Bolsonaro:

"The lesson for champions of open democracy is glaring. Its values cannot be taken for granted. When debate is no longer through regulated media, courts and institutions, politics will default to the mob. Social media – once hailed as an agent of global concord – has become the purveyor of falsity, anger and hatred. Its algorithms polarise opinion. Its pseudo-information drives argument to the extremes."

This is now the default consensus of the corporate media, whether in its rightwing incarnations or of the variety posing on the liberal-left end of the spectrum like the Guardian. The people are stupid, and we need to be protected from their base instincts. Social media, it is claimed, has unleashed humanity's id.

Selling plutocracy

There is a kind of truth in Jenkins' argument, even if it is not the one he intended. Social media did indeed liberate ordinary people. For the first time in modern history, they were not simply the recipients of official, sanctioned information. They were not only spoken down to by their betters, they could answer back – and not always as deferentially as the media class expected.

Clinging to their old privileges, Jenkins and his ilk are rightly unnerved. They have much to lose.

But that also means they are far from dispassionate observers of the current political scene. They are deeply invested in the status quo, in the existing power structures that have kept them well-paid courtiers of the corporations that dominate the planet.

Bolsonaro, like Trump, is not a disruption of the current neoliberal order; he is an intensification or escalation of its worst impulses. He is its logical conclusion.

The plutocrats who run our societies need figureheads, behind whom they can conceal their unaccountable power. Until now they preferred the slickest salespeople, ones who could sell wars as humanitarian intervention rather than profit-driven exercises in death and destruction; the unsustainable plunder of natural resources as economic growth; the massive accumulation of wealth, stashed in offshore tax havens, as the fair outcome of a free market; the bailouts funded by ordinary taxpayers to stem economic crises they had engineered as necessary austerity; and so on.

A smooth-tongued Barack Obama or Hillary Clinton were the favoured salespeople, especially in an age when the elites had persuaded us of a self-serving argument: that ghetto-like identities based on colour or gender mattered far more than class. It was divide-and-rule dressed up as empowerment. The polarisation now bewailed by Jenkins was in truth stoked and rationalised by the very corporate media he so faithfully serves.

Fear of the domino effect

Despite their professed concern, the plutocrats and their media spokespeople much prefer a far-right populist like Trump or Bolsonaro to a populist leader of the genuine left. They prefer the social divisions fuelled by neo-fascists like Bolsonaro, divisions that protect their wealth and privilege, over the unifying message of a socialist who wants to curtail class privilege, the real basis of the elite's power.

The true left – whether in Brazil, Venezuela, Britain or the US – does not control the police or military, the financial sector, the oil industries, the arms manufacturers, or the corporate media. It was these very industries and institutions that smoothed the path to power for Bolsonaro in Brazil, Viktor Orban in Hungary, and Trump in the US.

Former socialist leaders like Brazil's Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva or Hugo Chavez in Venezuela were bound to fail not so much because of their flaws as individuals but because powerful interests rejected their right to rule. These socialists never had control over the key levers of power, the key resources. Their efforts were sabotaged – from within and without – from the moment of their election.

Local elites in Latin America are tied umbilically to US elites, who in turn are determined to make sure any socialist experiment in their backyard fails – as a way to prevent a much-feared domino effect, one that might seed socialism closer to home.

The media, the financial elites, the armed forces were never servants of the socialist governments that have been struggling to reform Latin America. The corporate world has no interest either in building proper housing in place of slums or in dragging the masses out of the kind of poverty that fuels the drug gangs that Bolsonaro claims he will crush through more violence.

Bolsonaro will not face any of the institutional obstacles Lula da Silva or Chavez needed to overcome. No one in power will stand in his way as he institutes his "reforms". No one will stop him creaming off Brazil's wealth for his corporate friends. As in Pinochet's Chile, Bolsonaro can rest assured that his kind of neo-fascism will live in easy harmony with neoliberalism.

Immune system

If you want to understand the depth of the self-deception of Jenkins and other media gatekeepers, contrast Bolsonaro's political ascent to that of Jeremy Corbyn, the modest social democratic leader of Britain's Labour party. Those like Jenkins who lament the role of social media – they mean you, the public – in promoting leaders like Bolsonaro are also the media chorus who have been wounding Corbyn day after day, blow by blow, for three years – since he accidentally slipped past safeguards intended by party bureacrats to keep someone like him from power.

The supposedly liberal Guardian has been leading that assault. Like the rightwing media, it has shown its absolute determination to stop Corbyn at all costs, using any pretext.

Within days of Corbyn's election to the Labour leadership, the Times newspaper – the voice of the British establishment – published an article quoting a general, whom it refused to name, warning that the British army's commanders had agreed they would sabotage a Corbyn government. The general strongly hinted that there would be a military coup first.

We are not supposed to reach the point where such threats – tearing away the façade of western democracy – ever need to be implemented. Our pretend democracies were created with immune systems whose defences are marshalled to eliminate a threat like Corbyn much earlier.

Once he moved closer to power, however, the rightwing corporate media was forced to deploy the standard tropes used against a left leader: that he was incompetent, unpatriotic, even treasonous.

But just as the human body has different immune cells to increase its chances of success, the corporate media has faux-liberal-left agents like the Guardian to complement the right's defences. The Guardian sought to wound Corbyn through identity politics, the modern left's Achille's heel. An endless stream of confected crises about anti-semitism were intended to erode the hard-earned credit Corbyn had accumulated over decades for his anti-racism work.

Slash-and-burn politics

Why is Corbyn so dangerous? Because he supports the right of workers to a dignified life, because he refuses to accept the might of the corporations, because he implies that a different way of organising our societies is possible. It is a modest, even timid programme he articulates, but even so it is far too radical either for the plutocratic class that rules over us or for the corporate media that serves as its propaganda arm.

The truth ignored by Jenkins and these corporate stenographers is that if you keep sabotaging the programmes of a Chavez, a Lula da Silva, a Corbyn or a Bernie Sanders, then you get a Bolsonaro, a Trump, an Orban.

It is not that the masses are a menace to democracy. It is rather that a growing proportion of voters understand that a global corporate elite has rigged the system to accrue for itself ever greater riches. It is not social media that is polarising our societies. It is rather that the determination of the elites to pillage the planet until it has no more assets to strip has fuelled resentment and destroyed hope. It is not fake news that is unleashing the baser instincts of the lower orders. Rather, it is the frustration of those who feel that change is impossible, that no one in power is listening or cares.

Social media has empowered ordinary people. It has shown them that they cannot trust their leaders, that power trumps justice, that the elite's enrichment requires their poverty. They have concluded that, if the rich can engage in slash-and-burn politics against the planet, our only refuge, they can engage in slash-and-burn politics against the global elite.

Are they choosing wisely in electing a Trump or Bolsonaro? No. But the liberal guardians of the status quo are in no position to judge them. For decades, all parts of the corporate media have helped to undermine a genuine left that could have offered real solutions, that could have taken on and beaten the right, that could have offered a moral compass to a confused, desperate and disillusioned public.

Jenkins wants to lecture the masses about their depraved choices while he and his paper steer them away from any politician who cares about their welfare, who fights for a fairer society, who prioritises mending what is broken.

The western elites will decry Bolsonaro in the forlorn and cynical hope of shoring up their credentials as guardians of the existing, supposedly moral order. But they engineered him. Bolsonaro is their monster.

Jonathan Cook won the Martha Gellhorn Special Prize for Journalism. His books include "Israel and the Clash of Civilisations: Iraq, Iran and the Plan to Remake the Middle East" (Pluto Press) and "Disappearing Palestine: Israel's Experiments in Human Despair" (Zed Books). His website is www.jonathan-cook.net .

[Nov 05, 2018] 33 Trillion Reasons Why The New York Times Gets It Wrong on Russia-gate - Antiwar.com Original

Nov 05, 2018 | original.antiwar.com

33 Trillion Reasons Why The New York Times Gets It Wrong on Russia-gate

Facebook Said 80,000 Russian Posts Were Buried in 33 Trillion Facebook Offerings Over Two-Year Period Further Undermining NYT ·s Case

by Gareth Porter Posted on November 05, 2018 November 3, 2018 Even more damning evidence has come to light undermining The New York Times ' assertion in September that Russia used social media to steal the 2016 election for Donald Trump.

The Times ' claim last month that Russian Facebook posts reached nearly as many Americans as actually voted in the 2016 election exaggerated the significance of those numbers by a factor of hundreds of millions, as revealed by further evidence from Facebook's own Congressional testimony.

Further research into an earlier Consortium News article shows that a relatively paltry 80,000 posts from the private Russian company Internet Research Agency (IRA) were engulfed in literally trillions of posts on Facebook over a two-year period before and after the 2016 vote.

That was supposed to have thrown the election, according to the paper of record. In its 10,000-word article on Sept. 20, the Times reported that 126 million out of 137 million American voters were exposed to social media posts on Facebook from IRA that somehow had a hand in delivering Trump the presidency.

The newspaper said: "Even by the vertiginous standards of social media, the reach of their effort was impressive: 2,700 fake Facebook accounts, 80,000 posts, many of them elaborate images with catchy slogans, and an eventual audience of 126 million Americans on Facebook alone." The paper argued that 126 million was "not far short of the 137 million people who would vote in the 2016 presidential election."

But Consortium News , on Oct. 10, debunked that story, pointing out that reporters Scott Shane and Mark Mazzetti failed to report several significant caveats and disclaimers from Facebook officers themselves, whose statements make the Times' claim that Russian election propaganda "reached" 126 million Americans an exercise in misinformation.

The newspaper failed to tell their readers that Facebook account holders in the United States had been "served" 33 trillion Facebook posts during that same period -- 413 million times more than the 80,000 posts from the Russian company.

What Facebook general counsel Colin Stretch testified before the Senate Judiciary Committee on October 31, 2017 is a far cry from what the Times claims. "Our best estimate is that approximately 126,000 million people may have been served one of these [IRA-generated] stories at some time during the two year period," Stretch said.

Stretch was expressing a theoretical possibility rather than an established fact. He said an estimated 126 million Facebook members might have gotten at least one story from the IRA –- not over the ten week election period, but over 194 weeks during the two years 2015 through 2017 – including a full year after the election.

That means only an estimated 29 million FB users may have gotten at least one story in their feed in two years. The 126 million figure is based only on an assumption that they shared it with others, according to Stretch.

Facebook didn't even claim most of those 80,000 IRA posts were election–related. It offered no data on what proportion of the feeds to those 29 million people were.

In addition, Facebook's Vice President for News Feed, Adam Moseri, acknowledged in 2016 that FB subscribers actually read only about 10 percent of the stories Facebook puts in their News Feed every day. The means that very few of the IRA stories that actually make it into a subscriber's news feed on any given day are actually read.

And now, according to the further research, the odds that Americans saw any of these IRA ads – let alone were influenced by them – are even more astronomical. In his Oct. 2017 testimony, Stretch said that from 2015 to 2017, "Americans using Facebook were exposed to, or 'served,' a total of over 33 trillion stories in their News Feeds."

To put the 33 trillion figure over two years in perspective, the 80,000 Russian-origin Facebook posts represented just .0000000024 of total Facebook content in that time.

Shane and Mazzetti did not report the 33 trillion number even though The New York Times ' own coverage of that 2017 Stretch testimony explicitly stated , "Facebook cautioned that the Russia-linked posts represented a minuscule amount of content compared with the billions of posts that flow through users' News Feeds everyday."

The Times ' touting of the bogus 126 million out 137 million voters, while not reporting the 33 trillion figure, should vie in the annals of journalism as one of the most spectacularly misleading uses of statistics of all time.

Gareth Porter, an investigative historian and journalist specializing in US national security policy, received the UK-based Gellhorn Prize for journalism for 2011 for articles on the U.S. war in Afghanistan. His new book is Manufactured Crisis: the Untold Story of the Iran Nuclear Scare . He can be contacted at porter.gareth50@gmail.com .

Reprinted from Consortium News with the author's permission.

[Nov 05, 2018] Whatever Happened to the Russia-gate 'Scandal' - Antiwar.com Original

Nov 05, 2018 | original.antiwar.com

Whatever Happened to the Russia-gate 'Scandal'?

It fizzled, bigtime

by Justin Raimondo Posted on November 05, 2018 November 4, 2018 After all the screaming headlines and hysterical talk of "treason," the Russia-gate hoax was almost entirely absent from the midterms. One would think that the other party being in the hands of a ruthless foreign dictator who has it in for America would be a major campaign issue – that is, if the Democrats actually believed their own propaganda. However, we've seen neither hide nor hair of Putin in all those campaign ads, or at least hardly a glance: that's because Russia-gate has always been a fraud, a setup, and really a criminal conspiracy to take down a sitting US President on the basis of a gigantic lie.

As the promulgators of that lie are exposed – the Deep State amalgam that includes foreign intelligence agencies as well as Trump's domestic opponents – Democrats are backing away from what has suddenly become, for them, a very messy narrative. For what has happened is that the narrative has turned on them, and now implicates them in a massive scheme to embroil the Trump campaign in a web of foreign influencers.

The campaign to penetrate the Trump campaign appears to have been initiated abroad as much as it was started by the Clinton campaign – who inherited the operation from a very mysterious Republican donor after the GOP primaries. The "former" MI6 agent Christopher Steele, now working for an ostensibly independent spy network, didn't consider the job of digging up dirt on Trump just a normal job: he was passionately dedicated to stopping Trump from ever reaching the White House. One can easily impute the same motivations to the little group that took it upon themselves to break into the Trump campaign and put it under surveillance, all of them attached to British intelligence:

That's just the tip of the iceberg: the "intelligence community" has its tentacles everywhere, and while this has always been the case today our spooks are getting more brazen than ever before. As an indication of their evolution from government agencies charged with protecting the country into a coherent and very organized political force, a good number of these former agents ran as Democratic candidates for Congress on a platform of hurt feelings. "As someone who is from the intelligence community," former spook and Democratic congressional candidate Elissa Slotkin whines , "it is worrisome the way that President Trump has demonized the institutions where people are working hard every day to keep us safe." The American reverence for the military doesn't extend to the clandestine services: the public knows too much about their history of dirty tricks, assassinations, and regime-change antics abroad to trust them much on the home front.

Slotkin's lament is part and parcel of the great ideological shift when it comes to matters of national security: it is the Democrats who are now the party of militarism, which is the natural corollary of the globalist mentality that drives the "progressive" agenda. These candidates, however, are operating at a disadvantage, as Russia-gate proves to be a mirage and Robert Mueller continues to produce a bunch of low-level indictments that have nothing to do with Russian "collusion."

The polling on the Russia-gate "scandal" puts it somewhere between the 49 th and the 100 th concern of voters, a number that dramatizes the great gulf that has opened up between ordinary folks and the political class. The former are barely aware of Russia-gate: even now, all knowledge of it is fading from their memories. The latter have been obsessed with Russia-gate for two solid years – and now, when the narrative has all but fallen apart and the only people left at the party are Louise Mensch and some guy who keeps saying " It's time for some game theory! ", will once respectable outlets like The New Yorker admit that they have covered themselves in shame?

A NOTE TO MY READERS: I apologize for this rather short column, but I am still recovering from an unfortunate relapse that has made it hard for me to do anything, let alone write. This glitch was due to a change in my medication, which has now been corrected. However, this also means I'm back to square one: the heavy chemotherapy in addition to the Keytruda. I'm making a lot of progress recently and I expect to continue to improve. Meanwhile, bear with me: the best is yet to come.

NOTES IN THE MARGIN

You can check out my Twitter feed by going here . But please note that my tweets are sometimes deliberately provocative, often made in jest, and largely consist of me thinking out loud.

I've written a couple of books, which you might want to peruse. Here is the link for buying the second edition of my 1993 book, Reclaiming the American Right: The Lost Legacy of the Conservative Movement , with an Introduction by Prof. George W. Carey , a Foreword by Patrick J. Buchanan, and critical essays by Scott Richert and David Gordon ( ISI Books , 2008).

You can buy An Enemy of the State: The Life of Murray N. Rothbard (Prometheus Books, 2000), my biography of the great libertarian thinker, here .

[Nov 05, 2018] Stay In That Good Fight Retired Green Beret Urges Americans To Stand Up To The Globalists

Nov 05, 2018 | www.zerohedge.com

Authored by Jeremiah Johnson (nom de plume of a retired Green Beret of the United States Army Special Forces) via SHTFplan.com,

The actions that are taken are a three-pronged attack in order to foster in global governance, and they are as such:

  1. Create ubiquitous electronic surveillance with unlimited police power
  2. Throw the entire earth into an economic tailspin
  3. Destroy all nationalism, national borders, and create chaos among all nations prior to an "incendiary event" or series of actions that leads to a world war.

The world war is the most important part of it all, in the eyes of the globalists. The Great Depression culminated in a world war, and periods of economic upheaval are always followed by wars.

... ... ...

Every word here is recorded by XKeyscore mine and yours and stored in the NSA database in Utah, under a file for "dissenters," "agitators," and every other descriptive label that can be thought of for those who champion critical thought and independent thinking. Every conservative-minded journalist or writer who dares to espouse these views and theories is being recorded and kept under some kind of watch. You can be certain of it . Many are either shutting down or "knuckling under" and complying.

The globalists are getting what they wish: consolidating the resources while they "tank" the fiat economies and currencies of the nations. They are destroying cultures who just a mere two centuries ago would have armed their entire male populaces with swords and sent invaders either packing or in pieces.

They are destroying cultures by making them question themselves ! The greatest tactic imaginable!

I submit this last for your perusal. Do you know who you are? The question is not just as simple as it seems. Let's delve deeply. Do you really know who you are, where your family originates? Your heritage, and its strengths and weaknesses? Is that heritage yours, along with your heritage as an American citizen? It is not important that I, or others should know of these strengths not at this moment in time. The world war is yet to come. As Shakespeare said, "To thine own self be true." This is important for you to know it and hold fast to it. We are in the decline of the American nation-now-empire.

When the dust settles, you'll know who will run with the ball even with three blockers against them and will manage to slip the tackles or forearm shiver them in the face, outside of the ref's eye, to run that ball in. The Marquis of Queensbury is dead, and those rules will go out the window. When the dust settles, those who had the foresight and acted on it will be the ones who will be given a gift: a chance to participate in what is to come. Stay in that good fight, and fight it to win each day.

[Nov 04, 2018] Erasing Economics and Economic Policy from Politics The Race and Xenophobia Sideshow naked capitalism

Notable quotes:
"... What will the postmortem statue of neoliberalism look like? ..."
"... "You stupid Wap, you just scratched my car. That dirty Mick tripped me when I wasn't looking." ..."
"... That [N-word] SOB is just like them other Jew-boy globalists who are sending our jobs to Chinamen and whatnot. Screw him and all the damned Democrat libtards. ..."
Nov 04, 2018 | www.nakedcapitalism.com

LP: You've recently highlighted that this is a tricky time for historians and those who want to examine the past, like filmmakers. Well-intentioned people who want to confront the injustices of history may end up replacing one set of myths for another. You point out the distortion of history in films like "Selma" which offer uplifting narratives about black experiences but tend to leave out or alter meaningful facts, such as the ways in which blacks and whites have worked together. This is ostensibly done to avoid a "white savior" narrative but you indicate that it may serve to support other ideas that are also troubling.

AR: Exactly, and in ways that are completely compatible with neoliberalism as a style of contemporary governance. It boils down to the extent to which the notion that group disparities have come to exhaust the ways that people think and talk about inequality and injustice in America now.

It's entirely possible to resolve disparities without challenging the fundamental structures that reproduce inequalities more broadly. As my friend Walter Benn Michaels and I have been saying for at least a decade, by the standard of disparity as the norm or the ideal of social justice, a society in which 1% of the population controls more than 90% of the resources would be just, so long as the 1% is made up non-whites, non-straight people, women, and so on in proportions that roughly match their representation in the general population.

It completely rationalizes neoliberalism. You see this in contemporary discussions about gentrification, for example. What ends up being called for is something like showing respect for the aboriginal habitus and practices and involving the community in the process. But what does it mean to involve the community in the process? It means opening up spaces for contractors, black and Latino in particular, in the gentrified areas who purport to represent the interests of the populations that are being displaced. But that has no impact on the logic of displacement. It just expands access to the trough, basically.

I've gotten close to some young people who are nonetheless old school type leftists in the revitalized Democratic Socialists of America (DSA), and I've been struck to see that the identitarian tendency in DSA has been actively opposing participation in the Medicare for All campaign that the national organization adopted. The argument is that it's bad because there are disparities that it doesn't address. In the first place, that's not as true as they think it might be, but there's also the fact that they can't or won't see how a struggle for universal health care could be the most effective context for trying to struggle against structural disparities. It's just mind-boggling.

LP: If politicians continue to focus on issues like race, xenophobia, and homophobia without delivering practical solutions to the economic problems working people face, from health care costs to the retirement crisis to student debt, could we end up continuing to move in the direction of fascism? I don't use the word lightly.

AR: I don't either. And I really agree with you. I was a kid in a basically red household in the McCarthy era. I have no illusions about what the right is capable of, what the bourgeoisie is capable of, and what the liberals are capable of. In the heyday of the New Left, when people were inclined to throw the fascist label around, I couldn't get into it. But for the first time in my life, I think it's not crazy to talk about it. You have to wonder if Obama, who never really offered us a thing in the way of a new politics except his race, after having done that twice, had set the stage for Trump and whatever else might be coming.

hemeantwell , November 3, 2018 at 7:27 am

Thanks, Yves. For decades now Reed has set the standard for integrating class-based politics with anti-racism. I only wish Barbara Fields, whom he mentions, could get as much air time.

Doug , November 3, 2018 at 7:33 am

Thank you for posting this outstanding interview.

Those who argue for identity-based tests of fairness (e.g. all categories of folks are proportionately represented in the 1%) fail to think through means and ends. They advocate the ends of such proportionality. They don't get that broad measures to seriously reduce income and wealth inequality (that is, a class approach) are powerful means to the very end they wish for. If, e.g., the bottom 50% actually had half (heck, even 30 to 40%) of income and wealth, the proportionality of different groups in any socioeconomic tier would be much higher than it is today.

There are other means as well. But the point is that identity-driven folks strip their own objective of it's most useful tools for it's own accomplishment.

flora , November 3, 2018 at 6:54 pm

+1.
Thanks to NC for posting this interview.

The Rev Kev , November 3, 2018 at 9:18 am

In reading this, my mind was drawn back to an article that was in links recently about a Tea Party politician that ended up being sent to the slammer. He was outraged to learn that at the prison that he was at, the blacks and the whites were deliberately set against each other in order to make it easier for the guards to rule the prison.
It is a bit like this in this article when you see people being unable to get past the black/white thing and realize that the real struggle is against the elite class that rules them all. I am willing to bet that if more than a few forgot the whole Trump-supporters-are-racists meme and saw the economic conditions that pushed them to vote the way that they did, then they would find common cause with people that others would write off as deplorable and therefore unsalvageable.

Jim Thomson , November 3, 2018 at 11:21 am

Howard Zinn, in " A Peoples' History of the United States" makes a similar argument about the origins of racism in southern colonial America. The plantation owners and slave owners promoted racism among the working class whites towards blacks to prevent them ( the working class blacks and whites) from making common cause against the aristocratic economic system that oppressed both whites and blacks who did not own property.
The origin of militias was to organize lower class whites to protect the plantation owners from slave revolts.
The entire book is an eye-opening story of class struggle throughout US history.

JBird4049 , November 3, 2018 at 2:24 pm

The origin of militias was to organize lower class whites to protect the plantation owners from slave revolts.

The militias were the bulk of the military, if the not the military, for large periods of time for all of the British American Colonies for centuries. The colonists were in fairly isolated, often backwater, places for much of the time. Between the constant small scale warfare with the natives and the various threats from the French and Spanish military, there was a need for some form of local (semi) organized military. It was the British government's understandable belief that the colonists should pay at least some of the expensive costs of the soldiers and forts that were put in place to protect them during and after the Seven Years War that was the starting step to the revolution; the origins of modern American policing especially in the South has its genesis in the Slave Patrols although there was some form of police from the start throughout the Colonies form the very beginning even if it was just a local sheriff. The constant theme of the police's murderous brutality is a legacy of that. The Second Amendment is a result of both the colonists/revolutionarie's loathing, even hatred, of a potentially dictatorial standing army of any size and the slave holders' essential need to control the slaves and to a lesser degree the poor whites.

jrs , November 3, 2018 at 2:10 pm

people gang up (in racial groups – maybe that's just easiest though it seems to have systematic encouragement) in prison for protection I think. The protection is not purely from guards. There are riots in which one could get seriously injured (stabbed), one could get attacked otherwise etc.. Because basic physical safety of one's person is not something they provide in prison, maybe quite deliberately so.

"I am willing to bet that if more than a few forgot the whole Trump-supporters-are-racists meme and saw the economic conditions that pushed them to vote the way that they did, then they would find common cause with people that others would write off as deplorable and therefore unsalvageable."

In those for whom poverty caused them to vote for Trump. But some voted for Trump due to wealth. And whites overall have more wealth than blacks and so overall (not every individual) are the beneficiaries of unearned wealth and privilege and that too influences their view of the world (it causes them to side more with the status quo). Blacks are the most economically liberal group in America. The thing is can one really try simultaneously to understand even some of say the black experience in America and try hard to understand the Trump voter at the same time? Because if a minority perceives those who voted for Trump as a personal threat to them are they wrong? If they perceive Republican economic policies (and many have not changed under Trump such as cutting government) as a personal threat to them are they wrong? So some whites find it easier to sympathize with Trump voters, well they would wouldn't they, as the problems of poor whites more directly relate to problems they can understand. But so what?

Todde , November 4, 2018 at 7:21 am

Lol. He went to a minimum security federal prison, or daycare as we call it.

Ots tax cheats and drug dealers, not a lot of racial activity goes on there.

Livius Drusus , November 3, 2018 at 9:50 am

I am glad that Reed mentioned the quasi-religious nature of identity politics, especially in its liberal form. Michael Lind made a similar observation:

As a lapsed Methodist myself, I think there is also a strong undercurrent of Protestantism in American identity politics, particularly where questions of how to promote social justice in a post-racist society are concerned. Brazil and the United States are both former slave societies, with large black populations that have been frozen out of wealth and economic opportunity. In the United States, much of the discussion about how to repair the damage done by slavery and white supremacy involves calls on whites to examine themselves and confess their moral flaws -- a very Protestant approach, which assumes that the way to establish a good society is to ensure that everybody has the right moral attitude. It is my impression that the left in Brazil, lacking the Protestant puritan tradition, is concerned more with practical programs, like the bolsa familia -- a cash grant to poor families -- than with attitudinal reforms among the privileged.

https://thesmartset.com/what-politics-isnt/

Many white liberals are mainline Protestants or former Protestants and I think they bring their religious sensibilities to their particular brand of liberalism. You can see it in the way that many liberals claim that we cannot have economic justice until we eliminate racist attitudes as when Hillary Clinton stated that breaking up the big banks won't end racism. Of course, if we define racism as a sinful attitude it is almost impossible to know if we have eliminated it or if we can even eliminate it at all.

Clinton and liberals like her make essentially the same argument that conservatives make when they say that we cannot have big economic reforms because the problem is really greed. Once you define the problem as one of sin then you can't really do anything to legislate against it. Framing political problems as attitudinal is a useful way to protect powerful interests. How do you regulate attitudes? How do you break up a sinful mind? How can you even know if a person has racism on the brain but not economic anxiety? Can you even separate the two? Politicians need to take voters as they are and not insist that they justify themselves before voting for them.

Sparkling , November 3, 2018 at 1:16 pm

As a former Catholic, this post is absolutely correct on every possible level. Salvation by works or salvation by faith alone?

flora , November 3, 2018 at 9:54 pm

I thought this reference to the Protestant way of self-justification or absolving oneself without talking about class in the US is true but was perhaps the weakest point. The financial elites justify their position and excuse current inequalities and injustices visiting on the 99% by whatever is the current dominate culturally approved steps in whatever country. In the US – Protestant heritage; in India – not Protestant heritage; in Italy – Catholic heritage, etc. Well, of course they do. This isn't surprising in the least. Each country's elites excuse themselves in a way that prevents change by whatever excuses are culturally accepted.
I think talking about the Protestant heritage in the US is a culturing interesting artifact of this time and this place, but runs the danger of creating another "identity" issue in place of class and financial issues if the wider world's elite and similar self excuse by non-Protestant cultures aren't included in the example. Think of all the ways the various religions have been and are used to justify economic inequality. Without the wider scope the religious/cultural point risks becoming reduced to another "identity" argument; whereas, his overall argument is that "identity" is a distraction from class and economic inequality issues. my 2 cents.

Left in Wisconsin , November 3, 2018 at 10:10 am

The key point is that it is all about shutting down/shouting over class-based analysis. It is negative identity politics – "anti-intersectionality."

J Sterling , November 3, 2018 at 11:15 am

Yes. I'm convinced the reason for all the different flavors of privilege was to drown the original privilege–class privilege.

Carey , November 3, 2018 at 6:11 pm

Yes, as the dissemblings in the Paul Krugman column linked within this essay show so well.

Norb , November 3, 2018 at 11:20 am

Chris Hedges has been warning about the rise of American Fascism for years, and his warnings are coming to fruition- and still, the general population fails to recognize the danger. The evils and violence that are the hallmarks of fascist rule are for other people, not Americans. The terms America and Freedom are so ingrained in the minds of citizens that the terms are synonymous. Reality is understood and interpreted through this distorted lens. People want and need to believe this falsehood and resist any messenger trying to enlighten them to a different interpretation of reality- the true view is just to painful to contemplate.

The horrors of racism offer a nugget of truth that can misdirect any effort to bring about systemic change. Like the flow of water finding the path of least resistance, racist explanations for current social problems creates a channel of thought that is difficult to alter. This simple single mindedness prevents a more holistic and complicated interpretation to take hold in the public mind. It is the easy solution for all sides- the tragedy is that violence, in the end, sorts out the "winners". The world becomes a place where competing cultures are constantly at each others throats.

Falling in the racism/ identity politics trap offers the elite many avenues to leverage their power, not the least of which is that when all else fails, extreme violence can be resorted to. The left/progressives have become powerless because they fail to understand this use of ultimate force and have not prepared their followers to deal with it. Compromise has been the strategy for decades and as time has proven, only leads to more exploitation. Life becomes a personal choice between exploiting others, or being exploited. The whole system reeks of hypocrisy because the real class divisions are never discussed or understood for what they are. This seems to be a cyclical process, where the real leaders of revolutionary change are exterminated or compromised, then the dissatisfaction in the working classes is left to build until the next crisis point is reached.

WWIII is already under way and the only thing left is to see if the imperialist ideology will survive or not. True class struggle should lead to world peace- not world domination. Fascists are those that seek war as a means of violent expansion and extermination to suit their own ends. Hope for humanity rests in the idea of a multipolar world- the end of imperialism.

Agressive war is the problem, both on the small social scale and the larger stage between nations. The main question is if citizens will allow themselves to be swept up into the deceptions that make war possible, or defend themselves and whatever community they can form to ensure that mass destruction can be brought under control.

The real crisis point for America will be brought about by the loss of foreign wars- which seem inevitable. The citizenry will be forced to accept a doubling down on the existing failures or will show the fortitude to accept failure and defeat and rebuild our country. Seeking a mythic greatness is not the answer- only a true and sober evaluation will suffice- it must be a broader accommodation that accepts responsibility for past wrongs but does not get caught up in narrow, petty solutions that racist recriminations are hallmark. What is needed is a framework for a truth and reconciliation process- but such a process is only possible by a free people, not a conquered one. It is only on this foundation that an American culture can survive.

This will take a new enlightenment that seems questionable, at least in the heart of American Empire. It entails a reexamination of what freedom means and the will to dedicate oneself to building something worth defending with ones life. It has nothing to do with wanting to kill others or making others accept a particular view.

It is finding ones place in the world, and defending it, and cultivating it. It is the opposite of conquest. It is the resistance to hostility. In a word, Peace.

Jeremy Grimm , November 3, 2018 at 4:53 pm

I don't disagree with many of your assertions and their warrants but I am growing disturbed by the many uses of the word 'Fascism'. What does the word mean exactly beyond its pejorative uses? Searching the web I am only confused by the proliferation of meanings. I believe it's time for some political or sociological analyst to cast off the words 'fascism' and 'totalitarianism' and further the work that Hannah Arendt started. We need a richer vocabulary and a deeper analysis of the political, social, philosophical, and human contents of the concepts of fascism and of totalitarianism. World War II was half-a-century ago. We have many more examples called fascism and totalitarianism to study and must study to further refine exactly what kinds of Evil we are discussing and hope to fight. What purpose is served sparring with the ghosts as new more virulent Evils proliferate.

redleg , November 3, 2018 at 7:10 pm

Fascism?
Start with Umberto Eco and mull it over for a minute or two.

Norb , November 4, 2018 at 9:52 am

You have brought up a very important point. The meaning of words and their common usage. But I have to disagree that "new more virulent Evils" require a new terminology. To my mind, that plays right into the hand of Evil. The first step in the advancement of evil is the debasement of language- the spreading of lies and obfuscating true meaning. George Orwell's doublespeak.

I don't think its a matter of casting off the usage of words, or the creative search to coin new ones, but to reclaim words. Now the argument can be made that once a word is debased, it looses its descriptive force- its moral force- and that is what I take as your concern, however, words are used by people to communicate meaning, and this is where the easy abandonment of words to their true meaning becomes a danger for the common good. You cannot let someone hijack your language. A communities strength depends on its common use and understanding of language.

Where to find that common meaning? Without the perspective of class struggle taken into account- to orientate the view- this search will be fruitless. Without a true grounding, words can mean anything. I believe, in America, this is where the citizenry is currently, in a state of disorientation that has been building for decades. This disorientation is caused by DoubleSpeak undermining common understanding that is brought about by class consciousness/ solidarity/ community. In a consumerist society, citizens take for granted that they are lied to constantly- words and images have no real meaning- or multiple meanings playing on the persons sensibilities at any given moment- all communication becomes fundamentally marketing and advertising BS.

This sloppiness is then transferred into the political realm of social communication which then transforms the social dialog into a meaningless exercise because there is really no communication going on- only posturing and manipulation. Public figures have both private and public views. They are illegitimate public servants not because they withhold certain information, but because they hold contradictory positions expressed in each realm. They are liars and deceivers in the true sense of the word, and don't deserve to be followed or believed- let alone given any elevated social standing or privilege.

Your oppressor describes himself as your benefactor- or savior- and you believe them, only to realize later that you have been duped. Repeat the cycle down through the ages.

DoubleSpeak and controlling the interpretation of History are the tools of exercising power. It allows this cycle to continue.

Breaking this cycle will require an honesty and sense of empathy that directs action.

Fighting evil directly is a loosing game. You more often than not become that which you fight against. Directly confronting evil requires a person to perform evil deeds. Perpetuation of War is the perfect example. It must be done indirectly by not performing evil actions or deeds. Your society takes on a defensive posture, not an aggressive one. Defense and preservation are the motivating principles.

Speaking the truth, and working toward peace is the only way forward. A new language and modes of communication can build themselves up around those principles.

Protecting oneself against evil seems to be the human condition. How evil is defined determines the class structure of any given society.

So much energy is wasted on trying to convince evil people not to act maliciously, which will never happen. It is what makes them evil- it is who they are. And too much time is wasted listening to evil people trying to convince others that they are not evil- or their true intensions are beneficent- which is a lie.

"Sparing with ghosts", is a good way of describing the reclaiming of historical fact. Of belief in the study of history as a means to improve society and all of humankind thru reflection and reevaluation. The exact opposite desire of an elite class- hell bent on self preservation as their key motivating factor in life. If you never spar with ghosts, you have no reference to evaluate the person standing before you- which can prove deadly- as must be constantly relearned by generations of people exploited by the strong and powerful.

The breaking point of any society is how much falsehood is tolerated- and in the West today- that is an awful lot.

Summer , November 3, 2018 at 11:22 am

"I've gotten close to some young people who are nonetheless old school type leftists in the revitalized Democratic Socialists of America (DSA), and I've been struck to see that the identitarian tendency in DSA has been actively opposing participation in the Medicare for All campaign that the national organization adopted "

Check to see how their parents or other relatives made or make their money.

Left in Wisconsin , November 3, 2018 at 12:00 pm

This is quite the challenge. I know a large number of upper middle class young people who are amenable to the socialist message but don't really get (or don't get at all) what it means. (I'm convinced they make up a large portion of that percentage that identifies as socialist or has a positive image of socialism.) But it would be wrong to write them off.

A related point that I make here from time to time: all these UMC kids have been inculcated with a hyper-competitive world view. We need a systemic re-education program to break them free.

Louis Fyne , November 3, 2018 at 12:48 pm

as a complementary anecdote, i know of economically bottom 50% people who are devout anti-socialists, because they deal with "micro-triggers" of free-riders, cheaters, petty theft in their everyday life.

To them, the academic/ivory tower/abstract idea of equality in class, equality in income is an idealistic pipe dream versus the dog-eat-dog reality of the world.

Stratos , November 3, 2018 at 2:16 pm

Interesting that you mention "economically bottom 50% people who are devout anti-socialists, because they deal with "micro-triggers" of [low income?] free-riders, cheaters, petty theft in their everyday life."

I read a lot of their snarling against alleged low income "moochers" in the local media. What I find disturbing is their near total blindness to the for-profit businesses, millionaires and billionaires who raid public treasuries and other resources on a regular basis.

Just recently, I read a news story about the local baseball franchise that got $135 million dollars (they asked for $180 million) and the local tourism industry complaining about their reduction in public subsidies because money had to be diverted to homeless services.

No one seems to ever question why profitable, private businesses are on the dole. The fact that these private entities complain about reductions in handouts shows how entitled they feel to feed from the public trough. Moreover, they do so at a time of a locally declared "homeless emergency".

Yet, it is the middle class precariat that condemn those below them as 'moochers and cheaters', while ignoring the free-riders, cheaters and grand larceny above them.

Norb , November 4, 2018 at 10:11 am

There is no class consciousness. The working stiffs admire their owners so the only people left to blame for their difficult life conditions are the poor below them on the social hierarchy. Or they blame themselves, which is just as destructive. In the interim, they enjoy the camaraderie that sporting events provide, so give the owners a pass. Bread and Circuses.

A capitalist critique is the only way to change this situation, but that would require learning Marxist arguments and discussing their validity.

There is that, or Charity for the poor, which only aggravates the class conflict that plagues our society.

The third way is actually building community that functions on a less abusive manner, which takes effort, time, and will power.

Jeremy Grimm , November 3, 2018 at 5:37 pm

I homed in on your phrase "they deal with 'micro-triggers' of free-riders, cheaters, petty theft in their everyday life" and it landed on fertile [I claim!] ground in my imagination. I have often argued with my sister about this. She used to handle claims for welfare, and now found more hospitable areas of civil service employment. I am gratified that her attitudes seem to have changed over time. Many of the people she worked with in social services shared the common attitudes of disparagement toward their suppliants -- and enjoyed the positions of power it offered them.

I think the turning point came when my sister did the math and saw that the direct costs for placing a homeless person or family into appallingly substandard 'housing' in her area ran in the area of $90K per year. Someone not one of the "free-riders, cheaters, [or villains of] petty theft in their everyday life" was clearly benefiting. I am very lazy but I might try to find out who and advertise their 'excellence' in helping the poor.

Jeremy Grimm , November 3, 2018 at 5:54 pm

A "re-education" program? That usage resurrects some very most unhappy recollections from the past. Couldn't you coin a more happy phrase? Our young are not entirely without the ability to learn without what is called a "re-education" program.

Jeremy Grimm , November 3, 2018 at 6:30 pm

The comments in this post are all over the map. I'll focus on the comments regarding statues commemorating Confederate heroes.

I recall the way the issue of Confederate statues created a schism in the NC commentarient. I still believe in retaining 'art' in whatever form it takes since there is so little art in our lives. BUT I also believe that rather than tear down the Confederate statues of Confederate 'heroes' it were far better to add a plaque comemorating just what sorts of heroism these 'heroes' performed for this country. That too serves Art.

Tearing the statues down only serves forgetting something which should never be forgotten.

This was intended as a separate comment to stand alone. I believe Art should not forget but should remember the horrors of our past lest we not forget.

Jeremy Grimm , November 3, 2018 at 9:49 pm

" which we should not forget." -- to replace the end of the closing sentence.

Darius , November 3, 2018 at 1:41 pm

It occurred to me that centrists demonize the left as unelectable based entirely on tokens of identity. Long haired hippies. The other. It works because the political debate in America is structured entirely around identity politics. Nancy Pelosi is a San Francisco liberal so of course white people in Mississippi will never vote for the Democrats. Someone like Bernie Sanders has a message that will appeal to them but he is presented as to the left of even Pelosi or alternately a traitor to the liberal identity siding with racists and sexists. Actually, all of these oppressions are rooted in working class oppression. But that is inconsistent with the framing of ascriptive identity.

Susan the other , November 3, 2018 at 1:58 pm

This was a great post. Didn't know about Adolph Reed. He gets straight to the point – we have only 2 options. Either change neoliberal capitalism structurally or modify its structure to achieve equality. Identity politics is a distraction. There will always be differences between us and so what? As long as society itself is equitable. As far as the fear of fascism goes, I think maybe fascism is in the goal of fascism. If it is oppressive then its bad. If it is in the service of democracy and equality the its good. If our bloated corporatism could see its clear, using AR's option #2, to adjusting their turbo neoliberal capitalism, then fine. More power to them. It isn't racism preventing them from doing this – it is the system. It is structural. Unfortunately we face far greater dangers, existential dangers, today than in 1940. We not only have an overpopulated planet of human inequality, but also environmental inequality. Big mess. And neither capitalism nor socialism has the answer – because the answer is eclectic. We need all hands on deck and every practical measure we can conjure. And FWIW I'd like to compare our present delusions to all the others – denial. The statue of Robert E. Lee, imo, is beautiful in its conveyance of defeat with deep regret. The acceptance is visible and powerful. What will the postmortem statue of neoliberalism look like?

tegnost , November 3, 2018 at 3:22 pm

What will the postmortem statue of neoliberalism look like?

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gollum#/media/File:Gollum_s_journey_commences_by_Frederic_Bennett.jpg

Smeagol ?

Jeremy Grimm , November 3, 2018 at 5:42 pm

Smeagol is dead! Gollum lives!

Just a moment let me adjust my palantír.

Jeremy Grimm , November 3, 2018 at 5:18 pm

Do you really want 'equality' however you might define it? We are not born equal. Each of us is different and I believe each of us is therefore very special. [I suppose I echo the retort of the French regarding the equality of the sexes: "Vive la Difference!".] I believe we should celebrate our inequalities -- while we maintain vigilance in maintaining the equal chance to try and succeed or fail. The problem isn't inequality but the extreme inequalities in life and sustenance our society has built -- here and more abroad. I don't mind being beaten in a fair race. An unfair race lightens my laurels when I win. But our societies run an unfair competition and the laurels far too heavily grace the brows of those who win. And worse still, 'inequality' -- the word I'll use for the completely disproportionate rewards to the winners to the undeserving in-excellent 'winners' is not a matter solved by a quest for 'equality'. The race for laurels has no meaning when the winners are chosen before the race and the 'laurels' cost the welfare and sustenance for the losers and their unrelated kin who never ran in the race. And 'laurels' were once but honors and there is too far little honor in this world.

workingclasshero , November 3, 2018 at 8:34 pm

Nothing denotes a naive idealistic "progressive" than the demand for near absolute equality in terms of money and status in their future society.all or nothing i guess.

Jeremy Grimm , November 3, 2018 at 9:42 pm

I have read and appreciated many comments by 'Susan the other'. I would not ever characterize her comments as those of a naive idealistic "progressive" demanding absolute equality I should and must apologize if that is how you read my comment. I intended to suggest equality is not something truly desirable in-itself. But re-reading her comment I find much greater depth than I commented to --

'Susan the other' notes: "The statue of Robert E. Lee, imo, is beautiful in its conveyance of defeat with deep regret." In answer to her question: "What will the postmortem statue of neoliberalism look like?" I very much doubt that the post mortem statue of Neoliberalism will show regret for anything save that all the profits were not accrued before those holding the reins, the Elite of Neoliberalism, might gracefully die without care for any children they may have had.

tegnost , November 3, 2018 at 9:56 pm

STO is a real gem

freedomny , November 3, 2018 at 2:30 pm

Thanks for this post. I am really surprised these days by black "liberal" media folks who insist that racism be addressed before inequality/class issues. They are almost vehement in their discussions about this. Are they protecting neoliberalism because it benefits them .???

JBird4049 , November 4, 2018 at 12:52 pm

My previous admittedly overlong reply has yet to show. Darn.

But this question is an important one.

Yes, they do very much.

One of the reasons the Civil Rights struggle died was the co-option of the Black elites, especially of the Civil Rights Movement, by the American elites. After Martin Luther King's assassination, his Poor People's Campaign slowly died. A quiet quid pro quo was offered. Ignore all the various social, economic, political and legal wrongs done to all Americans, and yes blacks in particular, and just focusing on black identity and social "equality" or at least the illusion of campaigning for it, and in you will be given a guaranteed, albeit constrained, place at the money trough. Thus the Black Misleadership Class was born.

All the great movements in past hundred plus years have had their inclusivity removed. Suffragism/Feminism, the Union Movement, the Civil Rights Movement, even the Environmental Movement all had strong cross cultural, class, and racial membership and concerns. Every single of these movements had the usually white upper class strip out everyone else and focusing only on very narrow concerns. Aside from the Civil Rights Movement, black participation was removed, sometimes forcefully. They all dropped any focus on poor people of any race.

A lot of money, time, and effort by the powerful went into doing this. Often just by financially supporting the appropriate leaders which gave them the ability to push aside the less financially secure ones.

Jeremy Grimm , November 3, 2018 at 6:44 pm

Reading this post in its entirety I feel the author must become more direct in critique. Old jargon of class or race or a "struggle against structural disparities" should be replaced by the languages of such assertions as: " the larger objective was to eliminate the threat that the insurgency had posed to planter-merchant class rule" or "It just expands access to the trough, basically". Why mince words when there are such horrors as are poised against the common humanity of all?

witters , November 3, 2018 at 7:19 pm

Jeremy, I think Adolf is doing just fine.

Jeremy Grimm , November 3, 2018 at 9:23 pm

Your comment is too brief and too enigmatic. If by Adolf you mean Adolf H. -- he is dead. New potentially more dangerous creatures roam the Earth these days beware.

tegnost , November 3, 2018 at 10:25 pm

Adolph Reed is a power unto himself

https://thebaffler.com/salvos/the-trouble-with-uplift-reed

I consider currently one of our great intellectuals in that he understands and can use language to make his case in a layman not necessarily friendly but accessible .

and as a southern born white male I think maybe I should watch Glory I remember a '67 show and tell when a black classmate had a civil war sword come up in their sugar cane field, and when I and a friend found a (disinterred yuck) civil war grave just out in the woods in north florida. People seem to have forgotten that times were chaotic in our country's checkered past I was in massive race riots and massive anti war protests as a child of the '60s, but since I was in the single digits at the time no one payed me any mind as a for instance my dad somehow got the counselors apartment in a dorm at florida state in 68′ and I remember people in the the dorms throwing eggs at the protesters. It was nuts.

Tomonthebeach , November 3, 2018 at 8:56 pm

Ferguson's INET paper got me thinking about what triggers racism in us. As a kid, ethnic pejoratives were usually a reaction to some injury. "You stupid Wap, you just scratched my car. That dirty Mick tripped me when I wasn't looking." I tend to agree with the premise that bailing out Wall Street and letting Main Street lose out offers a powerful trigger for a racist reaction. People might have been softening on their lifelong covert racism when they succumbed to Obama's charm. But when you lose your job, then your house, and wind up earning a third of what you did before the GR, that is the sort of thing that triggers pejorative/racist reactions. That [N-word] SOB is just like them other Jew-boy globalists who are sending our jobs to Chinamen and whatnot. Screw him and all the damned Democrat libtards. Then, when a MAGA-hatted Trump echoes those sentiments over a PA system, the ghost of Goebbels is beaming.

[Nov 03, 2018] The Two Faces of Fascisization Inequality and the Fight Against Anti-Semitism - Q A with Paul Jay (3-5)

Nov 03, 2018 | therealnews.com

Paul Jay says a significant section of the population supporting far right "populism" is part of the process of the development of fascism, but the acceptance of gross inequality is also a necessary condition for this process – From a live recording on October 29th, 2018

[Nov 02, 2018] By Way Of Deception - False Flag Terror Acts Press Europe To Sanction Iran by B

Looks like Iran was "Skripaled". Intelligence agencies are now capable to perform false flag operation in thier home countries and blame other government with absolute impunity.
Notable quotes:
"... Israels secret service Mossad, with the CIA behind it, is framing Iran with alleged assassination plots in Europe. ..."
"... It is unlikely that Iran would take action in Europe, which it urgently needs to reduce the damage of U.S. sanction, over an incident for which it already punished the Islamic State. ..."
"... The Danish claims are allegedly based on information provided by Mossad. That only increases the suspicion that the assassination plot is a false flag operation similar to a recent one in Belgium. More likely though is that the CIA is behind such false flag incidents. ..."
"... Bahram Ghasemi, Iran's Foreign Ministry spokesman, said Iran "re-emphasized" to the diplomats a previous warning about the presence in their respective countries of members of a group that Iran classifies as a terrorist group and wants arrested and prosecuted. ..."
"... On October 30 Denmark suddenly accused Iran of an assassination plot against a leader of the ASMLA group ..."
"... It indeed seems that Danish government, led by the rightwing Venstre party, is collaborating with the U.S. and Britain to sabotage the European position against U.S. sanctions on Iran ..."
"... The former Secretary General of NATO and U.S. stooge Anders Fogh Rasmussen is the predecessor of the current Venstre party leader and Danish premier Lars Løkke Rasmussen. Both are hawks. ..."
"... Yesterday Israeli journalist reported that the information on which Denmark acted came from Israel ..."
"... Iran's foreign minister accuses Israel of running false flag operations to frame Iran ..."
"... Times of Israel ..."
"... Iran has no interest in causing any upheaval with Europe shortly before the second round of U.S. sanctions, which threaten its economic well being, come into place early this month. Iran already took revenge for the Ahvaz attack. It has no need to tackle some unrelated separatist who resides in Denmark. Iran needs Europe to work around the U.S. sanctions. That aim prohibits any such operations. ..."
"... Both, the MEK plot as well as the case in Denmark, smell of false flag incidents. In both case no one was hurt. In both cases some stooges with no current relation to Iran were caught. Both cases came to light after information was allegedly provided by Mossad ..."
"... "Both, the MEK plot as well as the case in Denmark, smell of false flag incidents. In both case no one was hurt." Just like with the "bombs" shipped to a few US "liberals" recently. ..."
"... It was only going to be a matter of time until Iran got Skripalled. Iran's Foreign Minister Javad Zarif Tweets a list : "Incredible series of coincidences. Or, a simple chronology of a MOSSAD program to kill the JCPOA?" ..."
Nov 02, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

Israels secret service Mossad, with the CIA behind it, is framing Iran with alleged assassination plots in Europe.

In September a terror attack killed some 30 people in Iran. Two entities, an Arab separatist movement as well as the Islamic State terror group ISIS, took responsibility. After an investigation Iran found that it was ISIS which was responsible. It took revenge against the identified culprits.

Six weeks later Denmark claims, without providing evidence, that Iran tried to assassinate a leader of the Arab separatist movement over the incident. Iran denies any such attempt. The right wing Danish government uses the claim to urge other European countries to sanction Iran.

It is unlikely that Iran would take action in Europe, which it urgently needs to reduce the damage of U.S. sanction, over an incident for which it already punished the Islamic State.

The Danish claims are allegedly based on information provided by Mossad. That only increases the suspicion that the assassination plot is a false flag operation similar to a recent one in Belgium. More likely though is that the CIA is behind such false flag incidents.

The details:

On September 22 gunmen killed 29 and wounded more than 70 participants and onlookers of a veterans day parade in Ahvaz, Iran:

Three of the attackers were gunned down during clashes with the security forces and one other was arrested, news agencies reported.
...
"The terrorists disguised as Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) and Basiji (volunteer) forces opened fire to the authority and people from behind the stand during the parade," the governor of Khuzestan, Gholam-Reza Shariati, said, according to IRNA.

U.S. State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert also referred to the attack as terrorism. Nauert said on Saturday, "We stand with the Iranian people against the scourge of radical Islamic terrorism and express our sympathy to them at this terrible time".

The Islamic State as well as an Arab separatist movement claimed responsibility :

On 22 September 2018, Yaqoob Al-Ahvaz claimed responsibility for the 2018 Ahvaz military parade attack in comments to UK-based Iran International TV. He said that his group Ahvaz National Resistance, a part of Arab Struggle Movement for the Liberation of Ahvaz, has "no choice but to resist." On 23 September, a statement made in The Hague, Netherlands, on the ASMLA website, denied responsibility for the attack, saying that the claim was made by a "group that was expelled from the organization since 2015."

After Yaqoob Al-Ahvaz claimed responsibility Iran accused Saudi Arabia of involvement in the attack:

IRGC spokesman Ramezan Sharif said the attackers were affiliated with a terrorist group supported by Saudi Arabia, Iran's state-run Press TV said.

"The individuals who fired at the people and the armed forces during the parade are connected to the al-Ahvaziya group which is fed by Saudi Arabia," Sharif said. Saudi Arabia has yet to respond to the allegations.

The UK-based Iran International TV, where Yaqoob Al-Ahvaz claimed responsibility, is funded by a firm with ties to Prince Mohammed bin Salman .

Several years ago ASMLA aka Al-Ahvaziya committed several terror attacks in Iran. Its leaders live in the Netherlands and Denmark.

Iran immediately reminded those countries of their duties:

Iran's Foreign Ministry summoned the ambassadors of the Netherlands and Denmark, along with a senior British diplomat on Saturday to issue a strong protest the attack, Iran's state-run media reports.

Bahram Ghasemi, Iran's Foreign Ministry spokesman, said Iran "re-emphasized" to the diplomats a previous warning about the presence in their respective countries of members of a group that Iran classifies as a terrorist group and wants arrested and prosecuted.

According to IRNA, Ghasemi said "it is unacceptable" that members of a terrorist group be allowed in those countries and not be included on the European Union's terror list only because they have not committed crimes on European soil.

A few days later though, Iran concluded that the attack was not committed by the Ahvaz movement, but by the Islamic State. On October 1 it responded with a missile salvo that hit Islamic State facilities in Syria:

The Iranian Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) announced they have bombed a site in eastern Syria in retaliation to the terrorist attack against a military parade in Iranian Ahvaz 10 days ago.

...

The IRGC confirmed that the targeted terrorist group was behind the terror attack that killed over a dozen and injured many more in the city of Ahvaz.

An additional operation against the planers of the attack took place on October 15 in Iraq:

Iran's Revolutionary Guards said on Tuesday they had killed the "mastermind" behind an attack on a military parade in the Iranian city of Ahvaz last month which left 25 people dead, nearly half of them members of the Guards.

The Guards said in a statement published on state media their forces had killed a man named Abu Zaha and four other militants in Diyala province in Iraq. One news website run by Iran's state television said Abu Zaha was a member of Islamic State.

That closed the issue for Iran.

On October 30 Denmark suddenly accused Iran of an assassination plot against a leader of the ASMLA group:

Danish Prime Minister Lars Lokke Rasmussen described the alleged planned assassination by Iran of an exiled separatist leader in Denmark as "totally unacceptable"

The Iranian ambassador to Copenhagen was summoned to the foreign ministry over the allegations. A Norwegian citizen of Iranian origin was arrested in Sweden on 21 October in connection with the alleged plan. The man denies the charges. Authorities conducted a massive manhunt on 28 September which led to road closures, trains and ferries being cancelled, and bridges being shut across Denmark.

On Tuesday, Danish intelligence chief Finn Borch Andersen confirmed the measures had been taken to prevent the alleged plot.

The Danish intelligence accused the Norwegian citizens of taking pictures of a house where one of the ASMLA leader lives. It provide no evidence for its claims. Iran rejected the accusations:

An Iranian foreign ministry spokesman said such "biased reports" and allegations pursued " the enemy's plots and conspiracies" to harm the developing relations between Iran and Europe , according to Tasnim news agency.

It indeed seems that Danish government, led by the rightwing Venstre party, is collaborating with the U.S. and Britain to sabotage the European position against U.S. sanctions on Iran:

Mr Rasmussen said, after a meeting with his British counterpart Theresa May in Oslo, that he appreciated her support. "In close collaboration with UK and other countries we will stand up to Iran," he tweeted. Foreign Minister Anders Samuelsen said Denmark would discuss further actions with European partners in the coming days.

The US Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo, congratulated Denmark on arresting "an Iranian regime assassin".

The former Secretary General of NATO and U.S. stooge Anders Fogh Rasmussen is the predecessor of the current Venstre party leader and Danish premier Lars Løkke Rasmussen. Both are hawks.

Yesterday Israeli journalist reported that the information on which Denmark acted came from Israel:

Barak Ravid @BarakRavid - 10:12 utc- 31 Oct 2018

BREAKING: Israeli Mossad gave Danish Security and Intelligence Service (PET) the information about the assassination attempt planned by Iranian intelligence service against the leader of the Iranian opposition organization ASMLA, Israeli official tells me

Well - if Israeli officials says Iran did something bad that will surely be true. (Not.)

Iran's foreign minister accuses Israel of running false flag operations to frame Iran :

Javad Zarif @JZarif - 20:15 utc - 31 Oct 2018

Mossad's perverse & stubborn planting of false flags (more on this later) only strengthens our resolve to engage constructively with the world. [...]

The Times of Israel notes :

Denmark's accusations against Iran followed the unveiling of another suspected Iranian plot to target a Paris rally by an opposition group in June. According to Israeli reports, the Mossad helped thwart that attack as well , which led to the arrest of several Iranians in Europe, including a diplomat.

The earlier plot involved two members of the anti-Iranian terror cult MEK in Belgium who were caught with explosives that they allegedly wanted to use to blow up a MEK conference in Paris:

The allegation that an Iranian operative plotted an attack on French soil is jeopardizing Europe's support for the accord. As U.S. and Israeli officials ramp up pressure on Europe to sever ties with Tehran, they have cited it as a reason why Mr. Macron and other leaders should end their support for the deal.

On Tuesday, Denmark announced it had foiled an Iranian operation to kill a dissident, turning up the pressure on Europe to harden its posture toward Tehran. A spokesman for Iran's foreign ministry said Iran had no involvement in the case.

The most interesting question about such plots is always "Cui bono?". Who benefits from these incidents?

Iran has no interest in causing any upheaval with Europe shortly before the second round of U.S. sanctions, which threaten its economic well being, come into place early this month. Iran already took revenge for the Ahvaz attack. It has no need to tackle some unrelated separatist who resides in Denmark. Iran needs Europe to work around the U.S. sanctions. That aim prohibits any such operations.

Both, the MEK plot as well as the case in Denmark, smell of false flag incidents. In both case no one was hurt. In both cases some stooges with no current relation to Iran were caught. Both cases came to light after information was allegedly provided by Mossad .

But is it really Israel who set up these incidents? Both serve U.S. interest just as much. It is no secret that the U.S. wants to prevent European subversion of U.S. sanctions on Iran.

In June 2017 the Trump administration installed a new CIA group to plot and launch undercover operations against Iran. It is led by its most ruthless operator:

He is known as the Dark Prince or Ayatollah Mike, nicknames he earned as the Central Intelligence Agency officer who oversaw the hunt for Osama bin Laden and the American drone strike campaign that killed thousands of Islamist militants and hundreds of civilians.

Now the official, Michael D'Andrea, has a new job. He is running the C.I.A.'s Iran operations, according to current and former intelligence officials, an appointment that is the first major sign that the Trump administration is invoking the hard line the president took against Iran during his campaign.

Mr. D'Andrea's new role is one of a number of moves inside the spy agency that signal a more muscular approach to covert operations under the leadership of Mike Pompeo, the conservative Republican and former congressman, the officials said.

A year later the same Mike Pompeo, now Secretary of State, created the Iran Action Group within the State Department. It is a complementary entity to the CIA group. Little has been published about the action both groups have taken so far. What has Ayatollah Mike done since he set up shop 18 month ago?

It is likely that the false flag operations in Europe, like the ones in Belgium and Denmark, are run by the CIA with the Mossad only in an auxiliary role. The U.S. can hardly admit that it is faking terrorist incidents in Europe while the overrated Mossad loves to take credit for everything that happens on this world.

Europe has no interest in supporting or escalating Trump's war on Iran. EU countries should demand hard evidence from Denmark and other accusers of Iran and should not act on the basis of only vague accusations.

Posted by b on November 1, 2018 at 10:30 AM | Permalink

Comments Iran should sue the puppet state Denmark. End of story

worldblee , Nov 1, 2018 10:59:28 AM | link

Israel is regarded as a beneficent country with no ulterior motives by western governments and media. Every time, you can count on like clockwork, no matter how outrageous or self serving the claim.
Occidentosis , Nov 1, 2018 11:08:14 AM | link
@mark2 about yemen you should read peter konig's Khashoggi versus 50,000 Slaughtered Yemeni Children Peter Koenig
https://thesaker.is/khashoggi-versus-50000-slaughtered-yemeni-children-peter-koenig-26-october-2018/
james , Nov 1, 2018 11:17:21 AM | link
thanks b.. i agree with your analysis here.. the usa needs to keep its puppet states. on a string... cia has a long history of these types of actions.. i am surprised at how easily or convenient it is for the puppets to continue as puppets.. and of course as we approach the nov 5 th financial santion bs from the evil empire that claims equality for all (after usa and israel are cared for) will be trying to alienate the rest of the world to iran as much as possible.. the timing here is in line with that goal post.. very predictible, just like our local shill who will claim it is iran as opposed to usa-israel-ksa and etc, that pull this shit regularly.. the same ugly crew responsible for supporting terrorism as witnessed in syria, yemen and etc further back are at work here... predictible..

i suspect more bs to come from these same state sponsored liars....

Mark2 , Nov 1, 2018 11:50:38 AM | link
And just take a look at Britain's disgusting priority's money is more important than preventing / stopping US/UK genacide !
https://mobile.twitter.com/BaFana3/status/1057698127623438336/photo/1
Gary Weglarz , Nov 1, 2018 11:57:22 AM | link
The complete and utter amorality of the West on display yet again, as if we needed any more examples. There is certainly compelling evidence that a group of "extremists" are endangering all of humanity and the entire planet, the only problem for Western MSM in reporting on this is that those "extremists" are in fact the ruling elites of the West and their "allies" in Saudi Arabia and Israel.
Clueless Joe , Nov 1, 2018 11:59:44 AM | link
"Both, the MEK plot as well as the case in Denmark, smell of false flag incidents. In both case no one was hurt." Just like with the "bombs" shipped to a few US "liberals" recently.
WJ , Nov 1, 2018 12:01:42 PM | link
I thought the War on Terror dictated that the whole world was the battlefield. What's the difference between Iran trying to take down a terrorist in Denmark and the US trying to take one down in Pakistan or Afghanistan or Africa?
karlof1 , Nov 1, 2018 12:16:51 PM | link
It was only going to be a matter of time until Iran got Skripalled. Iran's Foreign Minister Javad Zarif Tweets a list : "Incredible series of coincidences. Or, a simple chronology of a MOSSAD program to kill the JCPOA?"

Please note the last listed "coincidence."

Also on Zarif's Twitter is a video segment of his interview with Face The Nation and other important announcements. This is what he said about the Pittsburg attack:

"Extremism and terrorism know no race or religion, and must be condemned in all cases. The world deserves better than to have to live with weaponized demagoguery. Thoughts and prayers with victims of terrorist attack on Pittsburgh synagogue and their loved ones." [My Emphasis]

The nations of the world have had the following choice to make for awhile now, and I'd say the choice can no longer be kicked down the road:

Either blindly follow the two prevaricating Outlaw Nations--United States and Israel--or stand with Russia, China, and others in supporting proven truths and upholding the fundamental principles of International Law as expressed via the UN Charter. In other words, it's past time to review GW Bush's dicta: Either you're with us or against us--abet the lawbreakers or join the posse to contain them.

b , Nov 1, 2018 12:17:18 PM | link
@Mark2 - NO MORE ONE-LINERS FROM YOU or I will ban you.

Every time you come up to this site you disrupt all discussions here by posting 10+ one-line comments.

All those have the same characteristic. They are useless.

Stop this nonsense. Write decent comments that are on the subject of the post or just go away.

ben , Nov 1, 2018 12:19:24 PM | link
The evil empire and their bought minions are infecting the globe. They will never stop until their domination by organised $ brings surfs everywhere under their control.

These forces do not believe in a "middle class", they believe the wealthiest should rule because it creates a more stable and predictable society..

A society Charles Dickens wrote about. Wonderful...

Ger , Nov 1, 2018 12:29:25 PM | link
One needs a high level of stupid among the western population to sell bull s... by the buckets. But then again, that is US and allies. As was said: Too stupid to realize they are stupid. In the US the most trusted institution is the military. Proof enough?
Mark2 , Nov 1, 2018 12:35:54 PM | link
'B' that's o k i'll Just go away good bye good luck, and thanks for having me.
james , Nov 1, 2018 1:34:01 PM | link
about MEK, the terrorist group... our shithead exprime minister steven harper was singing the praises of them the past month.... apparenlty stevie just can't do enough for israel and zionism, and if the canuck media which is essentialy bought and paid for by the same interests has its way, we will get a similar insane gov't after trudeau light is finished his term... apparently canucks are one cycle behind the usa in electing its leaders... it will be a trump type israel subservient toad for next pm of cauckistan... i sure wish the western political players weren't so beholden to neoliberalism. and we had someone even half the leader putin is.... but, we don't....
Vitaliy , Nov 1, 2018 2:12:05 PM | link
East by not responding strongly to West provocations is begging for war.
East by crying for West for cooperation is begging for war.
And since East and West are controlled by the same same cabal - war is inevitable.
Just ask Mr. Kissinger...
hans , Nov 1, 2018 2:19:10 PM | link
The Edomites, who after Rome's extermination of the remnant of the House of Israel at Jerusalem began calling themselves "Jews" for "controlled opposition" for "the real Anti-Christ" "engine for enslaving mankind" we founded God's America to escape, become sex perverts, including incesting Sabbatean Frankists - hence the Manchu-baldness, as a consequence of their satanic cult's ritual sodomy of innocent toddlers while being rabbinically inculcated as "gods chosen by God to rule the world."

It is, in fact, the Synagogue of Satan.

notheonly1 , Nov 1, 2018 2:25:25 PM | link
Wow. Thank You for this one. After reading this excellent assessment of the present situation, of which we might only know the most shallow facts, I had to do a search (DDG) about Iran during the time of the first openly Fascist Europe - being described as having emanated from 3rd-Reich-Germany and Italy.
I was unaware that there was an Anglo-Soviet Invasion of Iran , because of the alleged sympathy of the Shah's Iran with Nazi-Germany. The Brits and the Russians were buddies then and wanted to prevent that Iranian oil is accessible to Nazi-Germany.

All over sudden I am confused that the Brits invaded shoulder to shoulder with Soviet forces Iran - while now, besides delivering the political ham theater of saber rattling against Russia, supporting terror and instigating sanctions against Iran again.

To make things much worse to comprehend, one is to wonder how many European countries actually did join Nazi Germany without much ado at the time, based on the fact that the Scandinavians and the Netherlands are now as Fascist as Nazi Germany was during its short 1000 years of glory. Does anybody else get the impression that this was always this way? That we have been lied to about everything regarding Fascism? That it was never Fascism that was the problem in Europe - as it appears to do very well there - but a strong Germany that could have easily governed its territory via effective 'bureaucracy'. All of Europe.

The truth is, that the stench of Fascism today, was already stinking badly in the 20th century, but was never really a problem. The problem were the Germans. And somehow, the Germans want to continue to have economic ties with Iran. Is this how history repeats itself - minus the marching Soviet/Russian and British buddy forces?

Quite ludicrous the whole theater.

Vitaliy , Nov 1, 2018 2:38:54 PM | link
19
Earth been damned and given to Worldmaster to rule - what else one needs to know?
craigsummers , Nov 1, 2018 2:48:11 PM | link
How many false flag operations have been invoked to explain unpopular events in recent years? The British government was behind the attempted murder of Skripal. All of the chemical attacks launched against the opposition in Syria were false flag operations to bring the US into the war (which amounted to nothing burgers anyway). Ray McGovern hypothesized the US used the Vault 7 tools as a false flag to blame Russia for the DNC hack. Is there any end to false flag speculation?

Who cares if the Iranians deny the charge? That means absolutely nothing. Russia has been lying and denying for years. Additionally, that Mossad would have provided the information to Denmark and France is completely logical since they have been collecting intelligence on Iran for years - and have been dealing with Iranian-supported terrorists for decades.

There is no evidence for a false flag operation. Sure it's a possibility (it's always a possibility), but the current evidence points toward Iranian plans to murder dissidents. The British were right about Skripal. The Dutch were right about MH17. Ray McGovern was wrong about the CIA hacking the DNC - and the likely result of this investigation is that Iran planned to murder a couple of dissidents. In lieu of the stupidity exhibited by the Saudis in the Khashoggi murder, it's completely believable.

With all of that said, this is a well thought out attempt to blame the US.

Red Ryder , Nov 1, 2018 3:00:44 PM | link
Denmark has become another UK, willing to perform any act and light any fuse against Russia, Iran or any nation that challenges the hegemony of US, EU and NATO.

Just a subservient vassal, self-degradating. I would compare Denmark to a whore, but that defames those poor souls.

The Danes are like Brits. There, I said it. Nothing worse than the official scumbags of Britain. Pity the good folks of both countries.

Such a little country desperately trying to hide their true Nazi soul, fabricating events and promulgating Fake News and bogus Intel.
In service to big Hegemon and little hegemon (Israel).

Just disgusting.

b , Nov 1, 2018 3:07:09 PM | link
@craig - With all of that said, this is a well thought out attempt to blame the US.

Thanks for acknowledging my geniality, and for the amusement. Shall we make you the house buffoon of the bar?

pretzelattack , Nov 1, 2018 3:10:54 PM | link
thanks for the analysis. we all see the pattern, but i guess it's still important to debunk the bullshit--it just never seems to stop the predetermined goals. it was widely seen that saddam's alleged wmd's didn't exist, but the invasion went on. now the u.s. wants war with iran. unless russia or china intervenes, what can stop it?
DontBelieveEitherPropaganda , Nov 1, 2018 3:15:48 PM | link
@10 - WJ: Difference is, USA has drones and some 19 yo teen can kill you with his joystick. ;)
I think false flag seems likely, but i also have some doubts about ISIS claiming to be resposible. The Iranian state is also pretty complex, with many different actors and power centers. So it cant be ruled out that those arab seperatists are resposible and that some rouge IRGC faction took action against reason of the state as a whole.
Like B said, the EU should demand evidence. Like with Skripal.. Not trust the Danish NATO proxys.
Nick Baam , Nov 1, 2018 3:33:01 PM | link
craigsummers:

The Dutch were not right about MH17, and neither are the Danes. Almost certainly another anti-Iranian false flag coming -- this on American soil -- w war soon to follow.

https://southfront.org/summing-up-russian-military-briefing-on-mh17-incident-missiles-serial-numbers-fake-videos-and-intercepted-radio-communications/

'The Russian military traced the Buk missile [9M38 missile], which shot down the Malaysian Airlines flight MH17 in eastern Ukraine in 2014, using serial numbers found on missile fragments showcased by an international team of investigators led by the Netherlands.

'Using the serial number of the nozzle cluster 9D13105000 No. 8-30-113 and the engine of the missile 9D131 with the serial number 8869032, the Russian military identified this missile as one produced by the Dolgoprudny plant – a Soviet/Russian designer and mass producer of surface-to-air missiles located in the city of Dolgoprudny, Moscow Oblast.

'The military said that the documentation for the aforementioned missile is still stored at the plant – the missile with the aforementioned engine and nozzle cluster has the manufacturing serial number of 8868720.

'According to the provided documents, the nozzle cluster was installed in the missile on December 24, 1986. The engine was installed to the missile on the same day.'

karlof1 , Nov 1, 2018 3:38:31 PM | link
Outlaw US Empire attacks Iran with new version of Stuxnet virus.

About the only difference between Trump and Hillary I can judge is he's not quite as reckless. Otherwise, their policy goal remains the same: Full Spectrum Dominance by any means necessary. The attack proves yet again the Outlaw US Empire would rather have destabilization and war in the region than peace, still thinking it remains the World's Boss.

Lozion , Nov 1, 2018 4:01:11 PM | link
@22 Nah, better make him the corner spit bowl..
sejomoje , Nov 1, 2018 4:12:36 PM | link
Thanks b, this is Journalism. Poor craigsummers appears to be in shock. It's ok craig.

We're in a really strange place vis a vis "Mossad" in the west. The average person on the street doesn't know whether to idolize them as superhuman kickass kravmaga-inventing Jason Bourne types, or diabolical creeps like Weinstein's "former Mossad" minions. Then Sacha Baron Cohen comes around and makes them funny again. Are they scary? Funny? When they appear in official media, it's usually in a display of mindblowing incompetence or fraud. So you can see how we're confused.

Bart Hansen , Nov 1, 2018 5:01:13 PM | link
25 - "USA has drones and some 19 yo teen can kill you with his joystick."

Yes, from a safe place in some place in the U.S. desert, but I wonder how the pilots of the aircraft refueling the KSA bombing runs to Yemen feel as they finish and do a 180 to return to base. Do they first look to see what their evil has done before heading back?

Kalen , Nov 1, 2018 5:31:34 PM | link
More likely it is Iran conveniently concluded that ISIS was responsible, only to get off the hook of EU countries that harbor terrorists not only anti Iran by anti Russia, so they closed the case not to wreck meek EU attempt to find the way around US sanctions with trade with Iran. Mossad did not like that and hence used another Russia Gate like provocation to stop EU Iran accommodation, this time claiming new Iranian terrorism issue Orwelian style blame victims.
Peter AU 1 , Nov 1, 2018 5:59:37 PM | link
karlof1 27 "About the only difference between Trump and Hillary I can judge is he's not quite as reckless."

I would agree with that, but I also think he will be willing to take big risks to see his plan through. He may well be like Putin's cornered rat if his plans are blocked.

Jen , Nov 1, 2018 6:14:52 PM | link
One question we should be asking is why all of a sudden is Denmark taking a leading role in accusing Iran of supporting terrorism and terrorist cells in Europe. Is Denmark's action as much to pressure Sweden and Finland into joining NATO as it is to pressure the EU into following the US in sanctioning Iran and tearing up the nuclear treaty the EU still adheres to?
Jen , Nov 1, 2018 6:20:00 PM | link
B @ 23, Lozion @ 28:

Craig's ambitions are rather more lofty than what you both have proposed. He aspires to be the President Trump of MoA.

Peter AU 1 , Nov 1, 2018 6:59:40 PM | link
This crap by the Danes is not without precedent. They were in on the US attack against the SAA at Deir Ezzor. US, UK, Australia and Denmark all took part in that attack.
hans , Nov 1, 2018 7:00:12 PM | link
One question we should be asking is why all of a sudden is Denmark taking a leading role

the danes swede and norway,netherlands folks have all been anglo zion borged.
the man leading this charge is a mr samuel son a proud son of a son i am sure he believes what he says i'm sure he has good reason.
wait for future headlines involving norways trillion dollar sovreign wealth fund vanishing just like gadaffi libya or ukraines gold..

country control via epstein lolita express blackmail.
young boys and girls in ritual cctv horror show as a form of soft power persuasion

Ninel , Nov 1, 2018 7:17:39 PM | link
I'm not entirely convinced b. The Iranian government has a long history of assassination attempts. And Denmark is not exactly a war mongering nation so your claims seem a bit shaky. I have never been impressed by analyses of Iran on this blog, as I think both b and many commentators here totally ignorant of the IRI's crimes against its own citizens. I am very knowledgable when it comes to Iran and so incidents like these do not surprise me. Of course I should make clear that it is possible to be against the IRI and western war mongering nations at the same time.
Circe , Nov 1, 2018 7:21:09 PM | link
I just can't stand responding to cs21 hasbara garbage; nothing is more annoying than hasbara. To quote Irish Nobel laureate GB Shaw: never wrestle with pigs, you both get dirty and the pig loves it!

Mossad used the MEK and another terrorist group, Jundallah in Iran when they didn't do the dirty job themselves to assassinate Iranian scientists extra-judicially. Imagine if JFK had done same when Israel was developing its nuclear weapons on the sly?

That's not all, Mossad used these terrorists like they used terrorists in Syria to foment manufactured revolution, specifically, in Iran, the Green Revolution and as for example what was done in Ukraine, terrorist snipers masquerading as basiji fired into the crowd of green protestors and killed a young women who the Western media elevated as the face of the Revolution hoping it would incite anger that would spread exponentially and trigger riots everywhere then civil war like in Syria and Ukraine, but they were very disappointed. This is playbook Mossad/CIA revolution engineering. All constituted criminal acts against sovereign nations, except in Iran their plan fizzled.

Mossad also used false flag against Gadaffi in Libya and years earlier against Mossadegh, the democratically elected leader of Iran that preceded the Shah. The Lavon Affair was a false flag comprised of multiple terrorist attacks that Israel planned and plotted to execute and blame on the Muslim Brotherhood and other Egyptian groups.

Mossad has assassinated what it considered to be terrorists in Europe, Syria, Lebanon, UAE, Jordan and on and on with total impunity. Some of these so-called terrorists were political leaders recent example Arafat, and attempted murder of Meschal, at least one or more were false flag to trigger civil war, i.e. in Lebanon, and some were what South African Apartheid victims would consider resistance and freedom fighters.

Israel also attacked the USSLiberty and no doubt had a hand in U.S. military sabotage in Lebanon not to mention murdering American journalists and activists.

ALL this was done with impunity. So in regards to these foiled terrorist attacks I have no doubt Mossad is up to no good and Israel has everything to gain in this dirty business they have executed many times before.

The truth lies in who benefits most and who has exhibited the most egregious pattern of behaviour. ISRAEL.

AriusArmenian , Nov 1, 2018 7:29:41 PM | link
Yes, it certainly smells like a false flag operation.
The CIA, MI6, and Mossad have been doing such operations in Europe since the end of WW2.
No surprise.
Ninel , Nov 1, 2018 7:30:56 PM | link
For those interested in the IRI, especially those uncritical, naive supporters, here is some light reading:


https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/1988_executions_of_Iranian_political_prisoners

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Evin_Prison

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chain_murders_of_Iran

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Iranian_labor_law

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Syndicate_of_Workers_of_Tehran_and_Suburbs_Bus_Company

Circe , Nov 1, 2018 8:16:27 PM | link
IRAN must be a hasbara trigger word. The Zionist web army recruits have arrived. Everything you pulled out of wiki I can double, triple, quadruple for Isra-hell. For starters, let's talk about Prison facility 1391 - torture, murder, perpetual isolation--dark ages stuff.

Let's talk about the kidnapping, imprisonment, even torture of children. Perhaps, the worst human rights record against children. 8000 Palestinian children arrested since 2000.

What about the two-tier justice system in Isra-hell?

Shall we discuss the murder of activists, journalists and protestors? What about political prisoners in Isra-hell? What about administrative detention. Detention without trial.

This is the tip of the iceberg regarding Isra-hell's human rights abuses. Don't get me started.

ben , Nov 1, 2018 8:34:13 PM | link
cs @ 21 said;"With all of that said, this is a well thought out attempt to blame the US."

For your perusal cs. Gee, I can't imagine why anyone would be suspicious of the U$A's motives
https://truthout.org/video/overthrow-100-years-of-us-meddling-and-regime-change-from-iran-to-nicaragua-to-hawaii-to-cuba/

craigsummers , Nov 1, 2018 9:27:36 PM | link
b @23
"......Thanks for acknowledging my geniality, and for the amusement. Shall we make you the house buffoon of the bar?......"

What ever suits you. I just appreciate you not deleting my account!

Thanks.

bokin , Nov 1, 2018 11:41:15 PM | link

As we approach the end of the year the big questions facing Europe are:

(1) Which country will win the prize for the most decapitations or slit throats? France or Germany?

With dozens of horrific crimes recently these two competitors are running neck and neck, however with Macron's France averaging close to one slit throat per day, France is probably going to win this contest

Which leaves us with the big question Germans are asking

(2) Which city will earn the distinction of being 2018's Rape Capital of Germany?

For a long time it seemed that the winner would surely be Berlin, but then Freiburg lurched into the lead a few weeks ago.

And now, with a 15-year-old being gang-raped by Afghan asylum seekers, Munich is hustling to take the title.

This crime and subsequent arrests were kept out of the media for a few weeks

-- coincidentally, until just after the recent local elections in Bavaria

The article below from Bild, also translated into English, contains additional details:

Suspects in Custody: Six Men Allegedly Raped Girl (15)

October 30, 2018

Munich -- The Munich police have arrested five Afghan refugees; according to Bayerischer Rundfunk another alleged perpetrator is on the run.

The allegation: They reportedly raped a 15-year-old girl.

The Munich public prosecutor confirmed to BILD upon request that there is an investigation involving a sexual assault and several people have been arrested. The spokesman did not want to comment further.

The case: The girl, who is being psychologically cared for, according to BILD's information, had filed charges against her "partner" at the end of September. The asylum seeker is said to have verbally threatened her and thereby forced her to have intercourse.

Also, he forced her to have intercourse with several his friends. She was so intimidated that she had to endure being abused by them all for several days. Each case is to be handled individually. Physical violence had played no role in the incidents.

In addition to the alleged victim's partner, four other refugees (all between 20 and 25 years old) were arrested. The alleged perpetrators are registered asylum seekers.

In the meantime, warrants have been issued against them on suspicion of rape. They are in custody.

The assaults are said to have occurred at the end of September. The first arrests were made four weeks ago.

Some interrogations remain to be conducted to substantiate the allegations made by the alleged victim, which is one explanation for why the authorities have not made the case public.

Some of the detainees admitted that they had intercourse with the minor, but said that it had taken place by mutual agreement."

Got that?

According to Bild, "Physical violence played no role in the incidents"

snedly arkus , Nov 2, 2018 12:43:12 AM | link
First their is money laundering charges by the US against Denmark's largest bank and now we have Denmark joining the Trump stomp on Iran project. Could it be the US cut a deal with Denmark to limit their investigations and penalties into this bank and maybe others, or possible involvement of Danish government officials, and the Dane's jumped at the chance to limit the damage to the country and it's economy and keep sanction happy Trump from sanctioning them into the poor house.
Steve , Nov 2, 2018 4:49:42 AM | link
Denmark, like Sweden and Norway are the biggest enablers of USA's imperial efforts more than any other nations in the whole world. I think it is only Russia which gets that fact. Nobel prizes are nothing but tooks of the US empire
james , Nov 2, 2018 4:54:55 AM | link
42 ben, ditto... cs has never heard of the cia and the past countless years of there horrors... in fact as far as cs is concerned, they never had any role to play in ghouta 2011 and afterwards either...cs thinks the letters stand for charity international association...usaid is another benevolent org as far as cs is concerned... if cs was ever to read john perkins 'confessions of an economic hit man' he would fall out of his chair and have his world turned upside down.... cs really needs to hang over at pat langs site where some of his love and ignorance of the usa's covert history has a place of acceptance.. it ain't here..
Laguerre , Nov 2, 2018 6:06:55 AM | link
44 bokin. German far-right propaganda reaches MoA.
Laguerre , Nov 2, 2018 7:24:45 AM | link
"It is likely that the false flag operations in Europe, like the ones in Belgium and Denmark, are run by the CIA with the Mossad only in an auxiliary role."

Very difficult to distinguish the two. Israel declared its campaign to internally destabilise Iran last spring (evidently having quailed at the risks of the open military attack), the US has been fruitlessly attempting the same for forty years. I suppose the new Israeli campaign has revived US efforts.

By the way, I was interested by Alastair Crooke's recent remark that Israeli air superiority has been broken by the S300s. Crooke's views are to take seriously.

https://www.rt.com/shows/rt-interview/442703-lavelle-crooke-middle-east/

That could be very grave for Israel, if so, and a context for what's happening.

Mina , Nov 2, 2018 7:51:49 AM | link
No one has picked up on this ?
https://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/middle-east/jamal-khashoggi-latest-news-saudi-arabia-turkey-embassy-washington-dc-a8601961.html
Did Khalid bin Salman return because might be accused of being part of the plot? There was a phonecall to the US apparently right after the killing.
https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/middleeast/syria/11120629/Saudi-prince-and-Emirates-first-female-fighter-pilot-take-part-in-Syria-air-strikes.html
It is getting closer to Kushner.
https://www.nytimes.com/2018/11/01/world/middleeast/with-saudi-prince-holding-on-to-power-us-seen-standing-by-him.html
"Two people close to the Saudi royal court said Mr. Kushner and Prince Mohammed communicate often, including by text message, and multiple times since Mr. Khashoggi's disappearance. A White House spokesman declined to comment about those communications."

The guy is said to have participated in some coalition attacks in Yemen and Syria
https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/middleeast/syria/11120629/Saudi-prince-and-Emirates-first-female-fighter-pilot-take-part-in-Syria-air-strikes.html
(I can't find anymore the recent paper where Yemen was mentioned).
Is this the new bigger than screen playstation for Saudi psychopaths? What about the enquiry into the non-identified plane that bombed civilians during an exchange of prisoners in northern Syria? Could it be a Saudi plane? How many of them have been used in Syria and Yemen?

Bandit , Nov 2, 2018 8:02:39 AM | link
Steve, how could you overlook the all time top lap dog: the UK? The UK would be first on most people's list of sycophant enablers of US terrorism, regime change, and false flag operations. Sometimes Macron tries to run ahead of the pack, but gets slapped back by Trump, but when all is said and done, the whole NATO crew are self-serving idiots and assholes.
mali , Nov 2, 2018 8:13:19 AM | link
Denmark, like Sweden and Norway are the biggest enablers of USA's imperial efforts more than any other nations in the whole world. I think it is only Russia which gets that fact. Nobel prizes are nothing but tooks of the US empire

Posted by: Steve | Nov 2, 2018 4:49:42 AM | 46
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Well said!

I totally agree with you after saw the ghastly bully behaviour of Denmark on 2009 United Nations Climate Change Conference, who was actively trying to force down the throat of BRICS (EPS. China & India) and developing countries the schemes that US & Co wanted: 1): to strangle the development chance of third world and 2). to escape the accountability/ownership of the big messy pollution the Western countries has been emitted into the air and the world for centuries.

Another aggressive Dane who was in full swing to propagate the Empire's interests/schemes is Anders Fogh Rasmussen, ex-NATO Secretary General, who was so belligerent that I sometimes question how the peace-love Denmark can produce such an aggressive person......

Rhisiart Gwilym , Nov 2, 2018 8:43:10 AM | link
b, is there any way to highlight a 'Craig Summers' post at the top, so we can skip over his/her/their lying rubbish unread. Bad enough having to wade through the effusions of the sprinkling of religious loonies who seem to be posting now, without wasting time on this bellingcrap-style hasbarollocks.
Jormaaja , Nov 2, 2018 8:48:51 AM | link
Is Denmark going to "stand up to Turkey" also?

"In the beginning of 2017 the Danish Security Service PET had received information about planned political murder of individuals in Denmark who oppose the Turkish government. The PET acted on the information and put the would be targets in safety. This is revealed by Swedish Radio Ekot.
https://sverigesradio.se/sida/artikel.aspx?programid=83&artikel=6975341

And is Denmark going to stop doing this:"Denmark's foreign minister has for the first time acknowledged that the government allowed the sale of surveillance technology to authoritarian Arab governments, including Saudi Arabia and the UAE." "Mass surveillance during and after the Arab Spring was used to facilitate the mass incarceration of dissidents, leading to the eventual crushing of popular movements, the report alleged."

https://www.alaraby.co.uk/english/news/2017/8/21/danish-fm-admits-selling-mass-surveillance-technology-to-saudi-arabia

And what are the Syro-Ahwazian pro-FSA dudes up to in Denmark:"One battalion of the rebel Free Syrian Army is called the "Ahwaz Brigade", although the group says there are no foreign fighters in its ranks.

"We have relations with different factions of the (Syrian) rebels," said Habib Nabgan, the former head of a coalition of Ahwazi parties whose armed wing carried out last week's pipeline attack.
"They need information, which we give them, and we need some of their expertise, so there is cooperation and that is developing," he told Reuters via telephone from Denmark, where he took refuge in 2006."
https://uk.reuters.com/article/us-iran-arabs-insight-idUKBRE97E0O620130815


Ahwazians in Syria:"Before the Syrian uprising, the Ahwazi community in Damascus was living in fear, but is now fully behind the revolutionary struggle.There have been frequent demonstrations in Syria by Ahwazi Arabs flying the opposition flag alongside their own."

https://www.alahwaz.info/en/?p=4642

EtTuBrute , Nov 2, 2018 9:26:51 AM | link
Interesting, the first time i heard of this story my instinct immediately was, why on earth would Iran conduct such risky and rather pointless operations where the downside would greatly outweigh any benefit if they were caught?? Add to that, no one was harmed, they got "caught".. and Mossad involved.. seems pretty clear to anyone who actually understands what's going on in the world.. but there aren't many of us who actually think when we read the news.. thanks again MR B for another insightful piece on analysis :)
Circe , Nov 2, 2018 10:24:00 AM | link
@43

Why? Because you think your Zionist propaganda claptrap is actually convincing and working to bring down surviving bastions of independent thought? It's laughable how hasbara-scripted you read; delivering superficially well-constructed neoliberal brainwash, whitewash material. Your disingenuous ilk courting the Left with liberal goodies, in one hand while unleashing double-standard neoconservative righteous destruction with the other is the main reason we now suffer Trump's fascist right-wing version of same. People protest vote neoliberalism and end up in the arms of the hard right-wing version. It's a no choice choice; an affront to real democracy. You play the desperation of the Left against the Right and then deliver it into the same neoconstruct. You're two sides of the same cult and neither can stand independent thought. After I read your Zionist-contrived claptrap, I feel like my mind has been abused and my time wasted. Once you're wise to the trap, you never go back to falling for whichever charismatic puppet is going to save us from the other side.

The goal becomes helping others break free of the vicious, cyclical no-choice duopoly to viably challenge and destroy it for good! You pretend at righeousness, but you're on the side of status quo darkness.

Circe , Nov 2, 2018 10:39:58 AM | link
Uh, just one more point, I still believe in GW Shaw's wisdom that you shouldn't wrestle with ignorance, ie pigs, but I just intended @56 as a Reader Beware CS for anyone who's out there only reading.
Peter AU 1 , Nov 2, 2018 11:31:43 AM | link
Laguerre 49

Perhaps of more importance was Crooke's remark on US debt. He said in August the cost of servicing the debt, for the first time, exceeded tax revenue. On top of that, the US must sell over a trillion of new debt each year for the next three years.

Laguerre , Nov 2, 2018 12:06:57 PM | link
Posted by: Peter AU 1 | Nov 2, 2018 11:31:43 AM | 58

Yes I too thought that was interesting. But Israel's problem is more fatal, in a permanent sense. Air superiority once lost won't be recovered, but the US could, if it wanted to, live more within its means.

Yul , Nov 2, 2018 12:13:06 PM | link
@b

Do you remember the Green revolution of 2009 that went pfttttt?
Well here is an edifying article wrt the CIA :

https://www.yahoo.com/news/cias-communications-suffered-catastrophic-compromise-started-iran-090018710.html?.tsrc=fauxdal

As usual, some former official has to include : Israeli intelligence tipped off the CIA that Iran had likely identified some of its assets, said the same former official.

james , Nov 2, 2018 12:24:36 PM | link
thanks b wise words as usual thanks for soft shoe shuffle i will of course let you know when you cross the antisemenetic line.
by the way
i love you
karlof1 , Nov 2, 2018 1:11:54 PM | link
58&59--

Regarding US Debt as a problem, Bolton sees it as a threat to national security:

"Bolton, speaking Wednesday at an event hosted by the Alexander Hamilton Society in Washington, said he expects U.S. defense spending "to flatten out" in the near term. He said he didn't anticipate major cuts to entitlements such as Medicare and Social Security.

""It is a fact that when your national debt gets to the level ours is, that it constitutes an economic threat to the society," Bolton said. "And that kind of threat ultimately has a national security consequence for it.""

Of course, he wants to cut support for citizens instead of support for the Deep State and its massively corrupt MIC. The massive cut in revenues caused by Trump's giveaways to corporations and the 1% were designed to exacerbate the problem and create an artificial crisis in discretionary spending. Most from all sides of the political spectrum can see this for what it is and are already pushing back, which will be the fundamental reason Trump won't get a 2nd term--his policies are proving to be a fiscal nightmare.

David Hollander , Nov 2, 2018 1:21:29 PM | link
The evidence provided by the author that the CIA was the primary driving agent in these incidents is not compelling. In fact, the US government under Obama supported the JCPOA against the wishes of the Netanyahu government. Thus the statement that "US interests" are necessarily defined by sanctions against Iran seems to me to be unfounded. Had the author replaced "US interests" with "Trump administration policies", which are clearly much more aligned with the interests of the Likud and Netanyahu the statement might be more supportable.
Laguerre , Nov 2, 2018 1:22:55 PM | link
re Yul

"Do you remember the Green revolution of 2009 that went pfttttt?"

Very interesting article, but the Green Revolution didn't go pfft because of that. 2009 failed because the middle class aren't very good at revolutions. They aren't the majority, and they didn't have popular support.

[Nov 02, 2018] Scheme or not: FBI investigate claim woman offered money to fake assault allegations against Mueller

Nov 02, 2018 | www.rt.com

The FBI is looking into claims that women have been asked to make false accusations of sexual harassment against Special Counsel Robert Mueller in exchange for money -- but all may not be as it seems. The alleged scheme aimed at Mueller, who has been investigating unproven ties between Donald Trump's presidential campaign and Russia, came to the attention of his office after several journalists and news outlets, including RT, were contacted by a woman claiming that she had been approached by a man offering money if she would fabricate claims against him.

13 days ago I received this tip alleging an attempt to pay off women to make up accusations of sexual misconduct against Special Counsel Bob Mueller. Other reporters received the same email. Now the Special Counsel's office is telling us they've referred the matter to the FBI pic.twitter.com/oqh4Fnel5u

[Nov 02, 2018] The Russian meddling fraud Weapons of mass destruction revisited by Andre Damon and Joseph Kishore

20 February 2018
Notable quotes:
"... World Socialist Web Site ..."
"... Washington Post columnist Richard Cohen, who rushed off a column before he could have examined Powell's allegations, declared, "The evidence he presented to the United Nations -- some of it circumstantial, some of it absolutely bone-chilling in its detail -- had to prove to anyone that Iraq not only hasn't accounted for its weapons of mass destruction but without a doubt still retains them. Only a fool -- or possibly a Frenchman -- could conclude otherwise." ..."
"... New York Times ..."
"... While the present campaign over Russian "meddling" has much in common with the claims about "weapons of mass destruction," the implications are far more ominous. The "war on terror" is exhausted, in part because the US is allied in Syria and elsewhere with the Islamic fundamentalist organizations it was purportedly fighting. ..."
"... The Mueller indictment is intended to provide an appropriate "narrative" for military aggression motivated by different aims. At the same time, it serves as a ready-made pretext for censorship and domestic repression that goes far beyond the extraordinary measures adopted under the framework of the "war on terror." Russia, the American people are supposed to believe, uses domestic social opposition to weaken the United States, rendering political dissent effectively treasonous. ..."
"... Even more extreme measures are being planned and implemented, motivated by the basic principle that the greater the lie, the more aggressive the methods required to enforce it. The target of the repressive measures is not Russia, but the American working class. The ruling elite is well aware that as it plots war abroad, it stands upon a social powder keg at home. ..."
Nov 02, 2018 | www.wsws.org

Fifteen years ago, on February 5, 2003, against the backdrop of worldwide mass demonstrations in opposition to the impending invasion of Iraq, then-US Secretary of State Colin Powell argued before the United Nations that the government of Saddam Hussein was rapidly stockpiling "weapons of mass destruction," which Iraq, together with Al Qaeda, was planning to use against the United States.

In what was the climax of the Bush administration's campaign to justify war, Powell held up a model vial of anthrax, showed aerial photographs and presented detailed slides purporting to show the layout of Iraq's "mobile production facilities."

There was only one problem with Powell's presentation: it was a lie from beginning to end.

The World Socialist Web Site , in an editorial board statement published the next day, declared the brief for war "the latest act in a diplomatic charade laced with cynicism and deceit." War against Iraq, the WSWS wrote, was not about "weapons of mass destruction." Rather, "it is a war of colonial conquest, driven by a series of economic and geo-political aims that center on the seizure of Iraq's oil resources and the assertion of US global hegemony."

The response of the American media, and particularly its liberal wing, was very different. Powell's litany of lies was presented as the gospel truth, an unanswerable indictment of the Iraqi government.

Washington Post columnist Richard Cohen, who rushed off a column before he could have examined Powell's allegations, declared, "The evidence he presented to the United Nations -- some of it circumstantial, some of it absolutely bone-chilling in its detail -- had to prove to anyone that Iraq not only hasn't accounted for its weapons of mass destruction but without a doubt still retains them. Only a fool -- or possibly a Frenchman -- could conclude otherwise."

The editorial board of the New York Times -- whose reporter Judith Miller was at the center of the Bush administration's campaign of lies -- declared one week later that there "is ample evidence that Iraq has produced highly toxic VX nerve gas and anthrax and has the capacity to produce a lot more. It has concealed these materials, lied about them, and more recently failed to account for them to the current inspectors."

Subsequent developments would prove who was lying. The Bush administration and its media accomplices conspired to drag the US into a war that led to the deaths of more than one million people -- a colossal crime for which no one has yet been held accountable.

Fifteen years later, the script has been pulled from the closet and dusted off. This time, instead of "weapons of mass destruction," it is "Russian meddling in the US elections." Once again, assertions by US intelligence agencies and operatives are treated as fact. Once again, the media is braying for war. Once again, the cynicism and hypocrisy of the American government -- which intervenes in the domestic politics of every state on the planet and has been relentlessly expanding its operations in Eastern Europe -- are ignored.

The argument presented by the American media is that the alleged existence of a fly-by-night operation, employing a few hundred people, with a budget amounting to a minuscule fraction of total election spending in the US, constitutes a "a virtual war against the United States through 21st-century tools of disinformation and propaganda" ( New York Times ).

In the countless articles and media commentary along this vein, nowhere can one find a serious analysis of the Mueller indictment of the Russians itself, let alone an examination of the real motivations behind the US campaign against Russia. The fact that the indictment does not even involve the Russian government or state officials is treated as a nonissue.

While the present campaign over Russian "meddling" has much in common with the claims about "weapons of mass destruction," the implications are far more ominous. The "war on terror" is exhausted, in part because the US is allied in Syria and elsewhere with the Islamic fundamentalist organizations it was purportedly fighting.

More fundamentally, the quarter-century of invasions and occupations that followed the dissolution of the Soviet Union is rapidly developing into a conflict between major nuclear-armed powers. The effort of the American ruling class to offset its economic decline using military force is leading mankind to the brink of another world war. As the National Defense Strategy, published less than a month before the release of the indictments, declared, "Inter-state strategic competition, not terrorism, is now the primary concern in US national security."

Russia is seen by dominant sections of the military-intelligence apparatus as a principal obstacle to US efforts to control the Middle East and to take on China -- and it is this that has been at the center of the conflict between the Democratic Party and the Trump administration.

There have already been a series of clashes in recent weeks between the world's two largest nuclear-armed powers. On February 3, a Russian close-air support fighter was shot down by al-Nusra Front fighters, which are indirectly allied with the United States in its proxy war against the government of Bashar Al-Assad. Then, on February 7 and 8, Russian soldiers were killed in US air and artillery barrages in Deir Ezzor, in what survivors called a "massacre." Both the US and Russian governments have sought to downplay the scale of the clash, but some sources have reported the number killed to be in the hundreds.

Even as US and Russian forces clashed in Syria, representatives of the Kremlin and the Pentagon sparred at the Munich security conference this weekend over the deployment and development of nuclear weapons. While accusing Russia of violating the Intermediate Range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty, Washington this month issued a nuclear posture review envisioning a massive expansion of the deployment of battlefield nuclear weapons.

The Mueller indictment is intended to provide an appropriate "narrative" for military aggression motivated by different aims. At the same time, it serves as a ready-made pretext for censorship and domestic repression that goes far beyond the extraordinary measures adopted under the framework of the "war on terror." Russia, the American people are supposed to believe, uses domestic social opposition to weaken the United States, rendering political dissent effectively treasonous.

Already, this campaign has led the major US technology firms to implement far-reaching measures to censor political speech on the Internet. Google is manipulating its search results and Facebook is manipulating its news feeds, while seeking to turn the social media platform it has developed into an instrument of corporate-state surveillance.

Even more extreme measures are being planned and implemented, motivated by the basic principle that the greater the lie, the more aggressive the methods required to enforce it. The target of the repressive measures is not Russia, but the American working class. The ruling elite is well aware that as it plots war abroad, it stands upon a social powder keg at home.

The working class must draw the necessary conclusions from its past experiences. In 2003, the Democratic Party supported the Bush administration's invasion of Iraq and provided it with the necessary political cover. Now, the Democrats, along with their appendages among the organizations of the upper-middle class, are at the forefront of the campaign for war, employing neo-McCarthyite tactics to criminalize opposition while seeking to subordinate all popular opposition to the Trump administration to its right-wing and militarist agenda.

The urgent task is to mobilize the working class, in the United States and internationally, against the entire apparatus of the capitalist ruling elite. The fight against war and dictatorship is at the same time the fight against inequality and exploitation, for the overthrow of capitalism and the establishment of a global socialist society.

Andre Damon and Joseph Kishore