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May the source be with you, but remember the KISS principle ;-)
Skepticism and critical thinking is not panacea, but can help to understand the world better
Media's Trump coverage has radicalized me. That's why this set of pages about color revolution against Trump was created despite the fact that I am a programmer, not a reporter. Looking at WaPo and NYT I can only say Wow! That proves the CIA were not joking when their spokesman said: "We shall know we have done our job when everything the public believes is false." It's like the editorial desk of every major MSM has a talking points written personally by Brennan.
|News||NeoMcCartyism||Recommended Links||US and British media are servants of security apparatus||Purple revolution against Trump||Wolff revelations and slander||MadCow desease of neoliberal MSM||Anti-Russian hysteria in connection emailgate and DNC leak||Anti Trump Hysteria|
|Ukraine-gate as Russiagate 2.0||Adam Schiff Witch Hunt||Demonization of Trump and "Trump is insane" meme||Coordinated set of leaks as a color revolution tool||Amorality and criminality of neoliberal elite||Do the US intelligence agencies attempt to influence the US Presidential elections ?||Strzok-gate||Steele dossie||DNC and Podesta emails leak: blaming Vladimir Putin|
|The problem of control of intelligence services in democratic societies||Woodward insinuations||Audacious Oligarchy and "Democracy for Winners"||Corporatist Corruption||Media-Military-Industrial Complex||Doublespeak||The Deep State||National Security State||Nation under attack meme|
|NeoMcCartyism||UK Government, MI6 and "Integrity Initiative"||Luke Harding a pathetic author of rehash of Steele Dossier book||MSM as attack dogs of color revolution||US and British media are servants of security apparatus||Was Natalia Veselnitskaya meeting with Trump Jr. a trap||Brennan elections machinations||Fake tale about Smolenkov as "Kremlin spy" who provided info for Steele dossier||Mistressgate: Stormy Daniels and Karen McDougal affairs|
|Deception as an art form||The Iron Law of Oligarchy||Neocon foreign policy is a disaster for the USA||Neoliberalism||History of American False Flag Operations||FBI Mayberry Machiavellians||Skeptic Quotations||Humor||Etc|
A Suffolk University poll last month showed Fox News viewers have an unfavorable view of the media by a margin off 64-24. Another survey showed 76 percent of Republicans think the media makes up stories about Trump. And a Quinnipiac poll in November showed 91 percent of Republicans disapproved of how the media covered Trump and just 10 percent trusted the media more than Trump.
"Every president gets pounded by the press," Kurtz wrote. "But no president has ever been subjected to the kind of relentless ridicule, caustic commentary and insulting invective that has been heaped on Trump. I have a name for this half-crazed compulsion to furiously attack one man. It's called Trump Trauma
|One more comment here about Michael Wolff and his claim that everybody in the White House thinks that Trump’s a child,
that he’s a moron, he doesn’t like to read, he’s mentally unbalanced, all this. This is really irresponsibly absurd. And for
this claim to be 100% of the people around Trump, and Wolff is the guy saying that he can’t guarantee everything in his book
is right, and he’s also admitting that he did anything to get his story, including not tell people they were on the record
when he was talking to ’em.
In East Germany, Stasi leader Markus Wolfe took things a step further with the “zersetzung” tactic. The idea was to *induce* a “personal crisis” through clandestine harassment, including at the hands of acquaintances secretly recruited by the Stasi. In other words, ... trying to cause *real* mental illness by relentlessly gaslighting selected individual dissidents until they cracked.
John Grudlos, January 26, 2018 at 9:49 am
The “Resistance” – the loose affiliation of neoliberals and neo-conservatives opposing Donald Trump – is not a grass-roots movement. They don’t speak for the everyman or the poor, or the oppressed. They are stooges of intelligence agencies and financial oligarchy. The latter are closely interconnected; remember that Allen Dulles was a Wall Street lawyer before becoming the top spy; and ;-). The Resistance is the voice of the Deep State – Pro-war, pro-globalisation, pro-Imperialism. It just try to hide its true face behind a mask of “progressive values”.
President Trump accuses his neocon and neoliberal critics and MSM of with hunt. And he is right. It is witch hunt of neoliberal MSM against the President who have the courage (at least during his election campaign) to call things with their proper names and to question neoliberal globalization and redistribution of wealth up, leaving Rust Belt without jobs and without perspectives. But witch hunt is not the whole story. It is just a part of a color Revolution against Trump.
|President Trump accuses critics, the media of with hunt. And he is right. It is witch hunt of neoliberal MSM against the President who have the courage (at least during his election campaign) to call things with their proper names and to question neoliberal globalization and redistribution of wealth up, leaving Rust belt without jobs and without perspectives.|
The Deep State – i.e. the constellation of national security agencies and private actors who have directed and maintained our globalist foreign policy since the end of World War II – would have targeted Trump in any case, due to his hostility to their interventionist foreign policy, Neoliberal presstitutes just follow the orders.
They tell us, in clear voices, who they are and that's why many voters refuse to listen them. There is, of course, certain percentage of totally brainwashed progressives who will side with anyone hitting anti-Trump talking points, spouting the right buzzwords, hashtags, etc. But most people understand that neoliberal MSM play a very dirty game.
Completely crazy, 24/7 promotion of mediocre Wolff book in January 2018 was a typical example of unrelenting campaign to discredit Trump and force him to abandon his position. And look at all those "kid gloves" interviews with Wolff in neoliberal MSM. And there were other similar books in pipeline. Most flopped (only Woodward book generated some buzz)
Media's treatment of Trump is a classic, textbook case of demonization of the elected leader of country, an essential part of preparation by intelligence agencies of a color revolution against him. Paradoxically this American Don_Quixote Trump fought back and managed to shred the neoliberal MSM credibility, especially CNN and MSNBC.
A Suffolk University poll last month showed Fox News viewers have an unfavorable view of the media by a margin off 64-24. Another survey showed 76 percent of Republicans think the media makes up stories about Trump. And a Quinnipiac poll in November showed 91 percent of Republicans disapproved of how the media covered Trump and just 10 percent trusted the media more than Trump.
This new Trump book could do even more damage than Michael Wolff’s. Here’s why., WaPo, Jan 22, 2018
The bottom line is that the intelligence services of the United States, and top officials of the FBI, have indeed launched a regime change operation comparable to the dozens carried out by these very same spooks over the years from Latin America to the Middle East. One telling sign of a color revolution is when the media use too many anonymous sources when detailing what happens behind the scenes at the White House:
Unnamed sources are way overused, especially by major news outlets. People are allowed to take cheap shots without their names attached. They are empowered to engage in political sniping from behind a curtain of anonymity. And top news executives know this.
This abuse of anonymous sources and comaigh of "leaks" from White House hiding under the curtain of anonymity and weak slander laws. Slander law in the USA requires public figure to prove malicious intent to win in court. As this is difficult to do slander using anonymous source became the trademark feature of witch hung against Trump.
The media and Hollywood are fully behind this “Resistance to Trump” smear campaign. This would be rather hilarious, if it was not for all gravitas with which the neoliberal MSM are trying to reverse the last election results (in close cooperation with the intelligence agencies).
Actually the USA media coverage of Trump after elections reminds us once again, that key MSM in the USA used to be controlled by CIA. At the highest level, top FBI and CIA officials deploy the assets available, including MSM to harass, undermine, and betray a sitting President. All for deviation from classic neoliberal party line, especially in the area of neoliberal globalization.
So theoretically we can guess who is behind the curtain and who is paying for all this dirty show. As well as who is organizing this stream of leaks and salacious detail (Steele dossier via FBI contractor Fusion GPS, Mistressgate, attack of Trump business empire, books like Wolff's book (BTW Wolff was Iraq war reporter: look at his interview to Bill Maher Jan 18, 2018 ) or more recent Woodward book. As somebody said about Christopher Steele, the author of Steele dossier "former MI6 agents are never ex." And they are using th full bag of tricks they learned at the agencies.
|If you are the British establishment tabloid press, make Jeremy Corbyn worse than Hitler. Just replace his picture at a recent debate with images of desecrated Jewish cemeteries, while providing a platform for tear-strained Blair-ites to conjure up the coming holocaust under his leadership.
While you are dredging up history to realign it with your own beliefs, why not reincarnate Joe McCarthy to defend liberal establishment plutocrats against Russian oligarchs?
Enlist an elite cadre of lesbians to make the case for endless war and the lovability of war criminals.
Elevate wheezing old apparatchik Josef Bidenevsky to replace the doddering nazi the party’s central committee “elected” while drunk on Grey Goose vodka.
Hybrid warfare, which usually provides cover for the aggressor nation or multinational, allowing it to avoid detection in
the ‘grey zone’ it operates within, is no longer a covert strategy, but an openly waged campaign against humanity itself, with
both the establishment left and the hard right steering its neoliberal course....
Just as the Corporate State tightens its oxygen-depleting chokehold across the globe, destroying all resistance with the speed and force of a flesh-eating superbug pandemic, its media organizations deliberately transmit this particularly deadly strain of the Neoliberalism Virus.
Jennifer Matsui , Nov 29, 2019 CounterPunch
This "war with the reality" of neoliberal MSM, which are ready to defend neoliberalism and globalization against nationalism and isolationalism to the last American, will continue to the last day of Trump presidency. Because the "war with the reality" is the immanent feature of neoliberalism, which can't exist without myths. Which suggest that it is a secular religion.
At the same time this #neverTrump campaign revealed several ugly truths about neoliberal MSM, neoliberal establishment, and its fifth column in intelligence agencies, as well as about neoliberal aversion to the truth.
It is important to understand that neoliberal MSM does not act independently, they are just puppets. So all those leaks and revelation are done under supervision or at least in close cooperation with (and individual journalist often with funding by) intelligence agencies. This is very true about any color revolution, including Russiagate revolution against Trump:
SethPoor -> BennyBoy Jan 22, 2018 9:47 AM Permalink
- Six U.S. agencies created a stealth task force, spearhead by CIA's Brennan, to run domestic surveillance on Trump associates and possibly Trump himself.
- To feign ignorance and to seemingly operate within U.S. laws, the agencies freelanced the wiretapping of Trump associates to the British spy agency GCHQ.
- The decision to insert GCHQ as a back door to eavesdrop was sparked by the denial of two FISA Court warrant applications filed by the FBI to seek wiretaps of Trump associates.
- GCHQ did not work from London or the UK. In fact the spy agency worked from NSA's headquarters in Fort Meade, MD with direct NSA supervision and guidance to conduct sweeping surveillance on Trump associates.
- The illegal wiretaps were initiated months before the controversial Trump dossier compiled by former British spy Christopher Steele.
- The Justice Department and FBI set up the meeting at Trump Tower between Trump Jr., Manafort and Kushner with controversial Russian officials to make Trump's associates appear compromised.
- Following the Trump Tower sit down, GCHQ began digitally wiretapping Manafort, Trump Jr., and Kushner.
- After the concocted meeting by the Deep State, the British spy agency could officially justify wiretapping Trump associates as an intelligence front for NSA because the Russian lawyer at the meeting Natalia Veselnitskaya was considered an international security risk and prior to the June sit down was not even allowed entry into the United States or the UK, federal sources said.
- By using GCHQ, the NSA and its intelligence partners had carved out a loophole to wiretap Trump without a warrant. While it is illegal for U.S. agencies to monitor phones and emails of U.S. citizens inside the United States absent a warrant, it is not illegal for British intelligence to do so. Even if the GCHQ was tapping Trump on U.S. soil at Fort Meade.
- The wiretaps, secured through illicit scheming, have been used by U.S. Special Counsel Robert Mueller's probe of alleged Russian collusion in the 2016 election...
For example, now it is known that FBI contractor Fusion GPS paid some journalists to blackmail Trump (redstate.com, Jan 07, 2018):
Why is Fusion GPS fighting so hard to resist the subpoena? Because the redacted records already released showed Fusion GPS paying money to journalists and to media organizations.
We don’t know if these payments were for pushing the totally irrelevant Trump dossier but we can be very sure that we will soon know the names of the journalists and organizations involved.
Being Trotskyism for the rich, neoliberalism not only reuses all Soviet propaganda tricks on a new technological level, it also inevitably creates a new nomenklatura, part of which can be called "national security parasites". Along with fincancial "masters of the universe" or top 0.1%) they controls a leion share of national wealth (redistribution of wealth up is the goal of neoliberalism). so huge military expences feed greedy "national security elite" which in the level of greed does not differ much from the financial elite. This formation of a cast of "national security parasites" is part of parcel of the more general process of the gradual corruption and degeneration of the political elite. Or how it is now called the "Washington swamp." or simple the swamp.
This new role of "national security parasites" -- a deeply entrenched in Washington caste of bureaucrats with exorbitant (for government) salaries who are essentially "enjoying their life" in Washington, DC, while understaffed and underfunded field personnel during all the heavy lifting is a completely new phenomenon. the level of infestation of intelligence agencies is such they they now are capable to influence elections. Worries of this caste were increased by Trump promises to cut Washington bureaucracy and send some of those Washington "fat cats" to field positions. This perspective might be yet another trigger points of the color revolution against him.
In this sense it looks like the US political situation after Trump victory is starting to mirror the Eastern European situation under Communism with the security agencies representing independent and formidable political force.
This is poorly understood but this political change with the intelligence agencies assuming a political role is the key to understanding of the current witch hunt against Trump. It is this development that made launching a color revolution against Trump possible.
And while public stopped trusting neoliberal MSM like CNN and MSNBC, the atmosphere was successfully poisoned.
In this sense that only reliable source of new remain foright sites on Internet (including some maligned by neoliberal MSM) and small web sites, as well as YouTube broadcasts.
They are now a new Samizdat. And this trend clearly worries the establishment (see comments to Are the Clintons Israeli Agents - The Unz Review).
|On another level, this regime-change operation is being waged in the media – or, rather, by the media, since 95% of the “mainstream” news outlets have been turned into anti-Trump propaganda outfits, emitting straight polemics 24/7. It’s no different from what they did in Chile, in 1973, when the CIA overthrew Salvador Allende, using clandestine contacts with the media to target the government with black propaganda, false flag incidents, and a general atmosphere of instability and crisis.|
In both cases it is clear that the majority of the MSM is controlled by intelligence agencies. See US and British media are servants of security apparatus
There are clear analogies here between Trump victory and Brexit and most US voters understand that they need to fight “big banks and hell-bent on neoliberal globalization financial elite” like UK voters did:
...the British politician, who was invited by Mississippi governor Phil Bryant, will draw parallels between what he sees as the inspirational story of Brexit and Trump’s campaign. Farage will describe the Republican’s campaign as a similar crusade by grassroots activists against “big banks and global political insiders” and how those who feel disaffected and disenfranchised can become involved in populist, rightwing politics. With Trump lagging in the polls, just as Brexit did prior to the vote on the referendum, Farage will also hearten supporters by insisting that they can prove pundits and oddsmakers wrong as well.
This message resonates with the Trump campaign’s efforts to reach out to blue collar voters who have become disillusioned with American politics, while also adding a unique flair to Trump’s never staid campaign rallies.
... ... ...
“I am going to say to people in this country that the circumstances, the similarities, the parallels between the people who voted Brexit and the people who could beat Clinton in a few weeks time here in America are uncanny,” Farage told Super Talk Mississippi. “If they want things to change they have get up out of their chairs and go out and fight for it. It can happen. We’ve just proved it.”
“I am being careful,” he added when asked if he supported the controversial Republican nominee. “It’s not for me as a foreign politician to say who you should vote for ... All I will say is that if you vote for Hillary Clinton, then nothing will change. She represents the very politics that we’ve just broken through the Brexit vote in the United Kingdom.”
What they do not understand is that intelligence agencies also have their own elite and it is no less dangerous then the financial elite. They also tent to control MSM competing and allying in this task with the financial elite (CIA was actually created by a Wall Street lawyers, such as Allen Dulles) . A more general question that arise in this context is: "Can any country with powerful intelligence agencies be a republic or a democracy?"
And another related question is "Can MSM in a country with powerful intelligence agencies exist outside of their control?".
For the list of top articles see Recommended Links section
Sep 30, 2020 | www.rt.com
Hillary Clinton cooked up Russiagate to smear Trump & distract from her own scandals, declassified docs suggest 29 Sep, 2020 21:47 Get short URL FILE PHOTOS. © Reuters / Kyle Grillot ; Reuters / Carlo Allegri 428 18 Follow RT on Failed presidential candidate Hillary Clinton OK'ed a plan to smear then-rival Donald Trump with accusations about Russian election-hacking to distract from her email scandal, newly-declassified papers appear to show.
Clinton approved an advisor's proposal to "vilify Donald Trump by stirring up a scandal claiming interference by Russian security services" in July 2016, according to information declassified on Tuesday by Director of National Intelligence John Ratcliffe. The bombshell revelation was made public in a letter to Senate Judiciary Committee chair Lindsey Graham (R-S. Carolina), in response to a request for information related to the FBI's Crossfire Hurricane (i.e. Russiagate) probe.
By the end of July 2016, US intelligence agencies had picked up chatter that their Russian counterparts not only knew of the scheme, but that Clinton was behind it – though the declassified material stresses that the American intelligence community "does not know the accuracy" of the claim that Clinton had green-lighted such a plan, or whether the Russians were exaggerating. However, then-CIA director John Brennan apparently followed up that assessment by briefing then-President Barack Obama on Clinton's Russian smear scheme, according to his handwritten notes – suggesting the spy agencies were very much aware what was going on.
READ MORE: 'They were trying to do a coup!': Trump says after FBI docs reveal agents bought liability insurance during Flynn probe
The news made a splash among the president's supporters and other Russiagate skeptics, one of whom observed the timing of the events described in the declassified material dovetailed seamlessly with the timetable in which Russiagate was unveiled to the public. Clinton staffer Robby Mook appeared on CNN on July 24, 2016 to claim that "Russian state actors broke into the [Democratic National Committee]" and "stole" the campaign's emails "for the purpose of actually helping Donald Trump."
Former British intelligence agent Christopher Steele filed his report around the same date, accusing the Trump campaign of colluding with Russian security services to hack the DNC and dump the emails via Wikileaks. The false information that made up the infamous "peepee dossier" – collected under contract from opposition research firm Fusion GPS – was used to justify securing a FISA warrant for Trump campaign aide Carter Page. That warrant, and others that followed, have since been declared invalid, as it was discovered the Obama administration had "violated its duty of candor" on its application for every warrant.ALSO ON RT.COM FBI used Steele Dossier to spy on Trump, KNOWING its primary sub-source was a suspected 'Russian agent,' DOJ reveals
Just a month before the 2016 election, Obama's intelligence agencies announced that they believed Russia was responsible for hacking the DNC – allegations it has since emerged were made without even examining the server on which the emails were stored.
More than a year after the release of special counsel Robert Mueller's report shocked Russiagate true believers with the absence of the promised proof of collusion, the colossal conspiracy theory has all but unraveled.
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Jan 13, 2019 | www.zerohedge.comTrue Blue , 1 hour ago linkAI Agent , 1 hour ago link
Feral, yes; rabid, absolutely; smart... not so much. Why is anyone surprised?
The DemoRats have never been a party dedicated to peace; the only ones thinking that are the walking bong-holes who assuage their cognitive dissonance by telling themselves that. Both the demorats and their willing accomplices 'across the aisle' have led us into constant war for nearly eight decades. Lilliputian Big enders and Little enders all.desertboy , 36 minutes ago link
She's a good lying propagandist... but she's not brilliant. Smart? maybe. Brilliant? Cow flop has more shine than Madcow.Throat-warbler Mangrove , 1 hour ago link
Maybe he meant "brilliant manipulator" -- sometimes they have meant the same thing.BlackChicken , 1 hour ago link
Get.Us (a). Out.Now
Screw the war mongers and the MIC.richardsimmonsoftrout , 1 hour ago link
If you read the article, it's obvious that [neo]liberals/whores are the apogee of hypocrisy.navy62802 , 1 hour ago link
"they're likely to emerge from 2020 with not only smeared consciences, but four more years in the opposition."
"Smeared consciences"... that's rich, pretty sure the psychopaths don't have a conscience.holdbuysell , 1 hour ago link
Perpetual war is about $$$. It knows no party. Never has and never will.
Yup. It's always about the money. As Fitts would say, that screeching you hear is the cash flow drying up for the rentiers. The murdering of women and children be damned. Hillary's demonic cackle is but the grotesque cherry on top: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fgcd1ghag5Y
Sep 29, 2020 | thenewkremlinstooge.wordpress.com
ET AL September 27, 2020 at 9:17 amMARK CHAPMAN September 27, 2020 at 12:19 pm
Neuters via Antiwar.com : Putin Calls For Mutual Ban on Election Meddling With US
US intel agencies claim Russia, China, and Iran are meddling in 2020 election
On Friday, Russian President Vladimir Putin said the US and Russia should sign an agreement promising not to meddle in each other's elections. https://www.reuters.com/article/us-russia-usa-putin/putin-says-russia-and-u-s-should-agree-not-to-meddle-in-each-others-elections-idUSKCN26G1LJ
Putin proposed, "exchanging guarantees of non-interference in each other's internal affairs, including electoral processes, including using information and communication technologies and high-tech methods."..
That is some excellently timed next level trolling from Pootie-McPoot-Face.
Of course the USA will never agree to such a proposal, because (a) it does not regard its meddling as 'interference' but as the bringing of the gift of freedom, (b) it stands on its absolute right of judgment as to what is a situation that requires more democracy and what is not, and (c) it probably knows at some level that Russia did not meddle in the US elections, and that it would therefore in that case be constraining its own behavior in exchange for nothing.
But then, when refused – I imagine the US will try to extract something from the offer, such as "A-HA!! So you ADMIT to meddling in our elections!! – Russia can obviously claim, "Well, we tried."
Sep 28, 2020 | www.zerohedge.com
Authored by Caitlin Johnstone via Medium.com,
The Washington Post , whose sole owner is a CIA contractor , has published yet another anonymously sourced CIA press release disguised as a news report which just so happens to facilitate longstanding CIA foreign policy.
In an article titled " Secret CIA assessment: Putin 'probably directing' influence operation to denigrate Biden ", WaPo's virulent neoconservative war pig Josh Rogin describes what was told to him by unnamed sources about the contents of a "secret" CIA document which alleges that Vladimir Putin is "probably" overseeing an interference operation in America's presidential election.
True to form , at no point does WaPo follow standard journalistic protocol and disclose its blatant financial conflict of interest with the CIA when promoting an unproven CIA narrative which happens to serve the consent-manufacturing agendas of the CIA for its new cold war with Russia.
And somehow in our crazy, propaganda-addled society, this is accepted as "news".
The CIA has had a hard-on for the collapse of the Russian Federation for many years , and preventing the rise of another multipolar world at all cost has been an open agenda of US imperialism since the fall of the Soviet Union. Indeed it is clear that the escalations we've been watching unfold against Russia were in fact planned well in advance of 2016, and it is only by propaganda narratives like this one that consent has been manufactured for a new cold war which imperils the life of every organism on this planet.
There is no excuse for a prominent news outlet publishing a CIA press release disguised as news in facilitation of these CIA agendas. It is still more inexcusable to merely publish anonymous assertions about the contents of that CIA press release. It is especially inexcusable to publish anonymous assertions about a CIA press release which merely says that something is "probably" happening, meaning those making the claim don't even know.
None of this stopped The Washington Post from publishing this propaganda piece on behalf of the CIA. None of it stopped this story from being widely shared by prominent voices on social media and repeated by major news outlets like CNN , The New York Times , and NBC . And none of it stopped all the usual liberal influencers from taking the claims and exaggerating the certainty:
The CIA-to-pundit pipeline, wherein intelligence agencies "leak" information that is picked up by news agencies and then wildly exaggerated by popular influencers, has always been an important part of manufacturing establishment Russia hysteria. We saw it recently when the now completely debunked claim that Russia paid bounties on US troops to Taliban-linked fighters in Afghanistan first surfaced; unverified anonymous intelligence claims were published by mass media news outlets, then by the time it got to spinmeisters like Rachel Maddow it was being treated not as an unconfirmed analysis but as an established fact:
If you've ever wondered how rank-and-file members of the public can be so certain of completely unproven intelligence claims, the CIA-to-pundit pipeline is a big part of it. The most influential voices who political partisans actually hear things from are often a few clicks removed from the news report they're talking about, and by the time it gets to them it's being waved around like a rock-solid truth when at the beginning it was just presented as a tenuous speculation (the original aforementioned WaPo report appeared on the opinion page).
The CIA has a well-documented history of infiltrating and manipulating the mass media for propaganda purposes, and to this day the largest supplier of leaked information from the Central Intelligence Agency to the news media is the CIA itself. They have a whole process for leaking information to reporters they like (with an internal form that asks whether the information is Accurate, Partially Accurate, or Inaccurate), as was highlighted in a recent court case which found that the CIA can even leak documents to select journalists while refusing to release them to others via Freedom of Information Act requests.
A lying, torturing , propagandizing , drug trafficking , assassinating , coup-staging , warmongering , psychopathic spook agency with an extensive history of deceit and depravity that selectively gives information to news reporters with whom it has a good relationship is never doing so for noble reasons. It is doing so for the same rapacious power-grabbing reasons it does all the other evil things it does.
The way mainstream media has become split along increasingly hostile ideological lines means that all the manipulators need to do to advance a given narrative is set it up to make one side look bad and then share it with a news outlet from the other side. The way media is set up to masturbate people's confirmation bias instead of report objective facts will then cause the narrative to go viral throughout that partisan faction, regardless of how true or false it might be.
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The coming US election and its aftermath is looking like it will be even more insane and hysterical than the last one, and the enmity and outrage it creates will give manipulators every opportunity to slide favorable narratives into the slipstream of people's hot-headed abandonment of their own critical faculties.
And indeed they are clearly prepared to do exactly that. An ODNI press release last month which was uncritically passed along by the most prominent US media outlets reported that China and Iran are trying to help Biden win the November election while Russia is trying to help Trump. So no matter which way these things go the US intelligence cartel will be able to surf its own consent-manufacturing foreign policy agendas upon the tide of outrage which ensues.
The propaganda machine is only getting louder and more aggressive. We're being prepped for something.
* * *
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theory , 3 minutes agoFreeman of the City , 18 seconds ago
ARTICLE: "Putin directing' influence Operation Denigrate Biden"......
The man is on Dementia Medication,
Without any help from Russia....!!!!!!!!!palmereldritch , 49 seconds ago
'It's Easier to Fool People Than to Convince Them That They Have Been Fooled'
- Mark TwainFreeman of the City , 1 minute ago
And prior to Bezos/CIA ownership the paper was managed by heirs whose ownership stake was originally acquired through a bankruptcy sale by a board member/trustee of The Federal Reserve.
So maybe it was just a share transfer...
"None are more hopelessly enslaved than those who falsely believe they are free"
Sep 28, 2020 | www.unz.com
JimDandy , says: September 26, 2020 at 6:33 pm GMT@lavoisier
We can both be right. Russia cockblocking Israel's ability to just roll over Assad's Syria, their relationship with Iran, etc. are big factors. It's been pretty funny to watch American Progressives rant and rave about Russia like warmonger rednecks in the 80's who just watched Rocky IV.
Aug 21, 2020 | www.unz.com
Ragno says: August 21, 2020 at 4:16 pm GMT 800 Words ⇑ @mark green
Truth be told: political operatives own and run our MSM. This is why the press is called the 'Fourth Estate'.
They are more correctly described as a Fifth Column , one far more open and sworn to destroy our country and its foundational citizens – and taxpayers – as any that ever operated during World War II. You would think this would be of vital interest to people who loudly declare themselves to be "Nazi-punchers", but who time and again show themselves to be merely low-level street terrorists informed and inspired by Mao's Red Guard and the irredeemable thugs of the African National Congress.
One wonders what's preventing them from mimicking the Red Terror waged by the leftists of Spain, when the battle for "freedom" involved the disinterment of the graves of Catholic clergy to better pose the corpses in blasphemous positions. Imagine how depraved those Mostly Peaceful protesters had to have been for even a leftist-supporting site such as Wikipedia to baldly state
The violence consisted of the killing of tens of thousands of people (including 6,832 Roman Catholic priests, the vast majority in the summer of 1936 in the wake of the military coup), attacks on the Spanish nobility, industrialists, and conservative politicians, as well as the desecration and burning of monasteries and churches.
Directly in the crosshairs this time are small and medium-sized owner-operated businesses – the true backbone of American freedom and prosperity – who have largely been sacrificed in exchange for the knock-kneed offerings of Danegeld from our giant conglomerates, all of whom have prospered immensely from the suffering and privation brought on by the Democratic lockdown of society – and the total shutdown of our economy.
Think! – have you read a single article charting how the government war on small business directly enriched Amazon.com and world's richest autocrat, Jeff Bezos? . who then funnels his windfall into a newspaper that blatantly pimps for the Democratic Party, which translates into a vast payday for the DNC, not least from its newly-approved partnership with the shadowy and many-tentacled Soros-surrogate group, BLM?
The result is what you'd expect when a fringe group operates with the full cooperation and partnership of major industry and both political parties (don't confuse Trump with a standard-issue Republican, please – he may have terrible flaws, but that isn't one of them) – 10% of the population holding the other 90% in a chokehold with only one set of rules: no arrest and prosecution for Bolshevik violence and terror ..but the zero-tolerance heavy hand of corrupt Leviathan coming down hard against any and all citizens who fight back or, eventually – inevitably – who even struggle against their restraints.
Short of the sudden arrival of celestial horsemen to punish the guilty and reward the set-upon, it has become clear that the only answer is the one that the Powers That Be claim to be dead set against: racial separatism. (Particularly when we consider that all that will be necessary to turn America into Hell on earth will be the adoption of Ibram Kendi's First Law, sometimes known as equality of outcome :
To fix the original sin of racism, Americans should pass an anti-racist amendment to the U.S. Constitution that enshrines two guiding anti-racist principals: Racial inequity is evidence of racist policy and the different racial groups are equals.
Could any "amendment" be more terrifyingly totalitarian than this?)
White and black separation would, instead, accomplish two goals, both more important than Kendi's quick fix: we would learn soon enough about actual equality of outcomes (which is why no Communist, black or white, wants anything to do with the creation of one more failed basket-case black state), and much more importantly, white families can sleep secure in their beds at night, without worrying about Apache raids at midnight, egged on and recorded for "posterity" by that Fourth Estate/Fifth Column referred to up top. Because the fact of the matter is that, even should some combination of government and law-enforcement halt the burning and looting of America – as things stand now, none of the worst malefactors will ever see the inside of a prison cell .which means any ceasefire will only be temporary, to be violently ripped asunder the moment they sense white Americans have at last lowered their guard once more. And living in perpetual paranoid readiness for violent uprisings and mindless destruction is no way to live at all.
Trump has it half right, a border wall is the answer: only it needs to run lengthwise , between the Southern and Northern borders. If we don't use the next four years to plan out such a separation, fretting over our children's children will be a fruitless exercise – those who aren't murdered will be captured and 'go native' .and in case you haven't looked at a globe lately, there's no place left to run.
Majority of One , says: August 21, 2020 at 4:33 pm GMT@Miro23
As a recovering journalist, I can point out that even on a rinkydink rag in a small city, where I got fired for being a real journalist back in the early '70's; he who owns the presses and distribution networks calls the tune. It's a matter of working-class (no matter how middle-class your income or social-status) versus the ownership class. The latter wins every time.
Sep 27, 2020 | www.zerohedge.com
Freeman of the City , 39 seconds agoFreeman of the City , 18 seconds ago
"Life is hard, it's harder if your stupid" - John Waynepalmereldritch , 49 seconds ago
'It's Easier to Fool People Than to Convince Them That They Have Been Fooled'
- Mark TwainFreeman of the City , 1 minute ago
And prior to Bezos/CIA ownership the paper was managed by heirs whose ownership stake was originally acquired through a bankruptcy sale by a board member/trustee of The Federal Reserve.
So maybe it was just a share transfer...
"None are more hopelessly enslaved than those who falsely believe they are free"
Sep 27, 2020 | www.unz.com
One of the most vibrantly alive people I met, André Vltchek, just died . Though he barely made it past his mid-fifties he got in a lot more living than a hundred average Americans who live to collect their pensions. Allah yarhamhu.
In honor of this great Truth Jihadi we're replaying this 2018 interview:André Vltchek on West's sadistic personality disorder (originally broadcast May 2, 2018)
The West claims to be the "free world" -- the global leader in human rights, humanitarianism, and free expression. Globetrotting independent journalist André Vltchek , who joins us from Borneo, isn't buying it. His latest essay begins:
Western culture is clearly obsessed with rules, guilt, submissiveness and punishment.
By now it is clear that the West is the least free society on Earth. In North America and Europe, almost everyone is under constant scrutiny: people are spied on, observed, their personal information is being continually extracted, and the surveillance cameras are used indiscriminately.
Life is synchronized and managed. There are hardly any surprises.
One can sleep with whomever he or she wishes (as long as it is done within the 'allowed protocol'). Homosexuality and bisexuality are allowed. But that is about all; that is how far 'freedom' usually stretches.
Rebellion is not only discouraged, it is fought against, brutally. For the tiniest misdemeanors or errors, people end up behind bars. As a result, the U.S. has more prisoners per capita than any other country on Earth, except the Seychelles.
Andre Vltchek's latest book is : The Great October Socialist Revolution: Impact on the World and Birth of Internationalism
Information on his other books and films
Luther Blisst , says: September 23, 2020 at 11:21 pm GMTPetrOldSack , says: September 24, 2020 at 11:00 am GMT
Andre taunted rightwing elites and illness – with a passion. I guess one of them caught up.
Living hard seems like a death-wish, maybe it was. Staring at darkness messes people up and he traveled again and again into the hearts of darkness across the planet because he wanted to be a modern Wilfred Burchett. He was one of the greats. My condolences to his family and friends.
Peace to Stephen Cohen too. You both will be missed.No Friend Of The Devil , says: September 24, 2020 at 9:07 pm GMT
André Vltchek was not an intellectual heavyweight. What is fascinating about his life-story is how and who financed. That should be easy for insiders to fish out, and insiders there be.
As to my humble opinion, Chomsky was neither. From all angles, his pre-fabricated prestige, his in-group attitudes, his encrusted prestance, pettiness, pedantry, always within convention, his factoid approach, the channels of communication, the lack of any systemic approach, his "good guys bad guys" copper´ approach, did not warrant the few hours listening in on his tune and omni-presence. His numb personality, contrary to the combative Vltchek is noted as a minor.
Some "intellectuals" have half a page of original content in them over the course of a life-time (not the same as career (n´est ce pas Pinker?)), most have none. "History repeat itself", through the bull-horns of public intellectuals. They both practiced a sort of journalism that is superficial (accent on the superficial) agenda driven.
They both are within the K. B. range.brabantian , says: September 26, 2020 at 11:14 am GMT
Ex-CIA John Kiriakou stated that the CIA was attempting to recruit just about anyone that they were able to starting in the sixties ranging from Hollywood actors/actresses, musicians, writers, journalists, artists, business people, just about anyone. Operation Mockingbird is still widely used even if it is no longer regerred to it as Operation Mockingbird.Adûnâi , says: Website September 26, 2020 at 2:12 pm GMT
André Vltchek (1962-2020) was the son of a Czech nuclear physicist father, and a Russian-Chinese artist-architect mother, born in Soviet-era St Petersburg (then Leningrad). He spent part of his childhood as well in the famous Czech beer city of Pilsen.
Here, an article where Vltchek talked about his roots, and his nostalgia for life under Communism in eastern Europe
Eulogy for André Vltchek by China expert Jeff J Brown
https://www.youtube.com/embed/EmCFRyDLDJU?feature=oembedAnon  Disclaimer , says: September 26, 2020 at 5:27 pm GMT
Western culture is clearly obsessed with rules, guilt, submissiveness and punishment.
What culture is not? Every single population on Earth wants to survive, Westerners want non-Aryans to survive, but the mechanism is always the same. The Stasi, the Gestapo, the CIA, the KGB – they all breathed air, and they all tortured dissenters. Turkey was almost overthrown in 2016. The Shah of Iran was, as were Hosni Mubarak and Gaddafi in Egypt and Libya. Bashar is facing quite a lot of criticism for being free – that critique comes in the form of bombs and jihadi freedom fighters. The Saudi Prince is wise for strangling and beheading Khashoggi. The USSR disintegrated after they had shut down the GULAG.
As a result, the U.S. has more prisoners per capita than any other country on Earth, except the Seychelles.
In 2012, the U.S. Committee for Human Rights in [the DPR of Korea] estimated 150,000 to 200,000 are incarcerated, based on testimonies of defectors from the state police bureau, which roughly equals 600–800 people incarcerated per 100,000.
The World Prison Brief puts the United States' incarceration rate at 655 per 100,000.Robert Konrad , says: September 27, 2020 at 12:50 am GMT
Okay. If the West is the least free society on the planet, why the heck do all these third-world people keep trying to move there? It is plain that Vltchek's thinking flunks the real-world reality test.
The reality is, the rest of the world is worse off than the West, or people wouldn't keep trying to leave the third world for the West.@Anon ey want to have freedom of their stupid religious beliefs, not freedom from religion. They still don't know that freedom of religion is not worth anything if it also doesn't guarantee freedom from religion.
Thomas Jefferson tried very hard to explain this to them, but Yankee morons have never learned what Jefferson tried to teach them. (With some notable exceptions, though, who, however, have absolutely no political power.)
Vltchek is/was right: American/Western civilization [sic] (siphilization, rather) is bankrupt and inhuman. It can only offer an abundance of material goods and military weapons as if the only goals of human life were material things and warfare.
Sep 25, 2020 | www.moonofalabama.org
Erelis , Sep 23 2020 0:26 utc | 45Somewhat a side note, but has some relevance. The West has used against Russia the same memes and tropes the German Nazis used against Jews, the Soviet Union, and Slavic peoples. The great Jewish conspiracy to destroy German is being regurgitated as Putin wants to destroy American democracy. But the second half the Nazi attack was the Jews wanted to destroy European civilization, and not just Germany. This is where the crap about "rules based order" comes in. Some also used the term "liberal democracies". Same theme: Russian wants to destroy the entirety of the Western order--not just making sure Hillary lost the election (and now Biden).
But here is the thing. The West with American leadership looks at this struggle over a rules based order as a life and death struggle. It is not just about economic competition and dominance. The underlying propaganda base is rather deadly.
Sep 25, 2020 | www.moonofalabama.org
The 'western' countries, i.e. the United States and its 'allies', love to speak of a 'rules based international order' which they say everyone should follow. That 'rules based order' is a way more vague concept than the actual rule of law:The G7 is united by its shared values and commitment to a rules based international order. That order is being challenged by authoritarianism, serious violations of human rights, exclusion and discrimination, humanitarian and security crises, and the defiance of international law and standards.
As members of the G7, we are convinced that our societies and the world have reaped remarkable benefits from a global order based on rules and underscore that this system must have at its heart the notions of inclusion, democracy and respect for human rights, fundamental freedoms, diversity, and the rule of law.
That the 'rules based international order' is supposed to include vague concepts of 'democracy', 'human rights', 'fundamental freedoms', 'diversity' and more makes it easy to claim that this or that violation of the 'rules based international order' has occurred. Such violations can then be used to impose punishment in the form of sanctions or war.
That the above definition was given by a minority of a few rich nations makes it already clear that it can not be a global concept for a multilateral world. That would require a set of rules that everyone has agreed to. We already had and have such a system. It is called international law. But at the end of the cold war the 'west' began to ignore the actual international law and to replace it with its own rules which others were then supposed to follow. That hubris has come back to bite the 'west'.
Anatol Lieven's recent piece, How the west lost , describes this moral defeat of the 'west' after its dubious 'victory' in the cold war:Accompanying this overwhelmingly dominant political and economic ideology was an American geopolitical vision equally grandiose in ambition and equally blind to the lessons of history. This was summed up in the memorandum on "Defence Planning Guidance 1994-1999," drawn up in April 1992 for the Bush Senior administration by Under-Secretary of Defence Paul Wolfowitz and Lewis "Scooter" Libby, and subsequently leaked to the media. Its central message was:
While that 1992 Washington paper spoke of the "legitimate interests" of other states, it clearly implied that it would be Washington that would define what interests were legitimate, and how they could be pursued. And once again, though never formally adopted, this "doctrine" became in effect the standard operating procedure of subsequent administrations. In the early 2000s, when its influence reached its most dangerous height, military and security elites would couch it in the terms of "full spectrum dominance." As the younger President Bush declared in his State of the Union address in January 2002, which put the US on the road to the invasion of Iraq: "By the grace of God, America won the Cold War A world once divided into two armed camps now recognizes one sole and pre-eminent power, the United States of America."
But that power has since failed in the wars on Iraq and Afghanistan, during the 2008 financial crisis and now again in the pandemic. It also created new competition to its role due to its own behavior:On the one hand, American moves to extend Nato to the Baltics and then (abortively) on to Ukraine and Georgia, and to abolish Russian influence and destroy Russian allies in the Middle East, inevitably produced a fierce and largely successful Russian nationalist reaction. ...
On the other hand, the benign and neglectful way in which Washington regarded the rise of China in the generation after the Cold War (for example, the blithe decision to allow China to join the World Trade Organisation) was also rooted in ideological arrogance.
Western triumphalism meant that most of the US elites were convinced that as a result of economic growth, the Chinese Communist state would either democratise or be overthrown; and that China would eventually have to adopt the western version of economics or fail economically. This was coupled with the belief that good relations with China could be predicated on China accepting a so-called "rules-based" international order in which the US set the rules while also being free to break them whenever it wished; something that nobody with the slightest knowledge of Chinese history should have believed.
The retired Indian ambassador M.K. Bhadrakumar touches on the same points in an excellent series about the new Chinese-Russian alliance:
- The Sino-Russian Alliance Comes of age -- Part 1
- The Sino-Russian Alliance Comes of Age -- Part 2
- The Sino-Russian Alliance Comes of Age -- Part 3
Bhadrakumar describes how the 'west', through its own behavior, created a mighty block that now opposes its dictates. He concludes:Quintessentially, Russia and China contest a set of neoliberal practices that have evolved in the post-World War 2 international order validating selective use of human rights as a universal value to legitimise western intervention in the domestic affairs of sovereign states. On the other hand, they also accept and continuously affirm their commitment to a number of fundamental precepts of the international order -- in particular, the primacy of state sovereignty and territorial integrity, the importance of international law, and the centrality of the United Nations and the key role of the Security Council.
While the U.S. wants a vague 'rules based international order' China and Russia emphasize an international order that is based on the rule of law. Two recent comments by leaders from China and Russia underline this.
In a speech in honor of the UN's 75th anniversary China's President Xi Jinping emphasized law based multilateralism :China firmly supports the United Nations' central role in global affairs and opposes any country acting like boss of the world, President Xi Jinping said on Monday.
"No country has the right to dominate global affairs, control the destiny of others or keep advantages in development all to itself," Xi said.
Noting that the UN must stand firm for justice, Xi said that mutual respect and equality among all countries, big or small, is the foremost principle of the UN Charter.
No country should be allowed to do whatever it likes and be the hegemon or bully, Xi said. "Unilateralism is a dead end," he said.
International laws should not be distorted or used as a pretext to undermine other countries' legitimate rights and interests or world peace and stability, he added.
The Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov went even further by outright rejecting the 'western rules' that the 'rules based international order' implies:Ideas that Russia and China will play by sets of Western rules under any circumstances are deeply flawed , Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said in an interview with New York-based international Russian-language RTVI channel.
"I was reading our political scientists who are well known in the West. The following idea is becoming louder and more pronounced: it is time to stop applying Western metrics to our actions and stop trying to be liked by the West at any cost . These are very reputable people and a rather serious statement. It is clear to me that the West is wittingly or unwittingly pushing us towards this analysis. It is likely to be done unwittingly," Lavrov noted. "However, it is a big mistake to think that Russia will play by Western rules in any case, just like thinking this in terms of China."
As an alliance China and Russia have all the raw materials, energy, engineering and industrial capabilities, agriculture and populations needed to be completely independent from the 'west'. They have no need nor any desire to follow dubious rules dictated by other powers. There is no way to make them do so. As M.K. Bhadrakumar concludes :The US cannot overwhelm that alliance unless it defeats both China and Russia together, simultaneously. The alliance, meanwhile, also happens to be on the right side of history. Time works in its favour, as the decline of the US in relative comprehensive national power and global influence keeps advancing and the world gets used to the "post-American century."
On a lighter note: RT , Russia's state sponsored international TV station, has recently hired Donald Trump (vid). He will soon host his own reality show on RT . The working title is reportedly: "Putin's Apprentice". The apprenticeship might give him a chance to learn how a nation that has failed can be resurrected to its former glory.
Posted by b on September 22, 2020 at 17:59 UTC | Permalink
Kali , Sep 22 2020 18:18 utc | 1The Liberal International Order or Pax Americana are synonyms for The Rules Based Order. The plan that was followed for years was the outline given by Zbigniew Brzezinski and the Trilateral Commission in The Grand Chessboard to "contain" the ambition of Russia, China, and Iran over their interest to expand into Central Asia and the Middle East. Brzezinski changed in 2016, so did Kissinger, Brzezinski wrote that it was time to make peace and to integrate with Russia, China and Iran. But the elites had changed by then, newer people had taken over and no longer followed Brzezinski.circumspect , Sep 22 2020 18:27 utc | 2The rules are follow the dictates of our western neo-colonial institutions like the World Bank, the IMF et all. We will own you and you will do what we say and those are the rules. Any challenge to our authority will lead to war, economic ruin or both.ptb , Sep 22 2020 18:37 utc | 3
Its a pretty simple concept backed by the attack dog of the US military.'Rules based order' was always a euphemism for exceptionalism of one kind or another. The term was invented to avoid having to say 'rule of law', which invited criticism because even the most minimal amount of law (such as Geneva conventions, ICC etc) was rejected in practice and in policy by the leading members of the actually existing world order.Patrick Armstrong , Sep 22 2020 18:52 utc | 4Can't resist tooting my own horn.vk , Sep 22 2020 19:05 utc | 5
https://patrickarmstrong.ca/2017/04/29/the-west-actually-lost-the-cold-war-it-turned-victory-into-defeat/Rumor says the "Wolfowitz Doctrine" also envisioned the balkanization of Russia (the document is still classified, but it leaked to a NYT journalist at the time, who published a report on it).Passer by , Sep 22 2020 19:43 utc | 9
.. .. ..It is not over in the sense that the West hasn't given up in its attempts to take over the world. But as the "exceptionalist" western countries decline, they will go even crazier and crazier and there will be full blown hysteria.
In this sense, the rule based order will be over as there will be only disorder and animalistic, crazed western rage and bullying. The West is like a trapped animal. It will start pouncing, raging and snarling like a wild animal. This is the real nature of the West. A hungry wild animal that needs to feed.
All the liberalism is just self-congratulation about how exceptionalist it is. It is born out of narcisism and self-obsession during the "good times" of the West.
But behind the liberal mask, there are hateful eyes and gnashing teeth, and hunger and greed for other people's resources.
The real face of it is hateful and snarling. And it will be fully exposed during the next 10 years, as the West goes crazy and it becomes a hungry wild animal that desperately needs to feed.
Expressed in words, the West's face says "I'm the best and you are nothing! Give me your stuff! And this is how it will forever be!"
Countries need to stay out from the wild animal and carry a big stick just in case, until it succumbs from its internal hatreds and contradictions.
gepay , Sep 22 2020 19:44 utc | 11As Putin has said, the US is no longer agreement capable. As b. outlines. the US elites no longer follow the rule of law. This is even true within the US. The US inherited the role formerly played by the British Empire after WW2.Roy G , Sep 22 2020 20:11 utc | 13
The national security apparatus of both the US and the Soviet Union kept the Cold War going. Notice how soon after JFK was assassinated Khrushchev was deposed. Gorbachev rightly stopped the Soviets superpower regime. As Dmitri Orlov points out - Empire hollowed out the Soviet Union and he sees it doing the same to the US.
Instead of bringing Russia into the Western liberal democracies (with the threat of major nuclear war now drastically reduced) the now Anglo-Zionist Empire just looted it. The life expectancy of Russians fell 7 years in a decade until rescued by Putin.
It can now be seen that the Nixon-Kissinger opening up to China was not to gain access to its large market potential but to gain access to hundreds of millions of cheap, disciplined, and educated workers. The elites starting in the 70s became greedier. Jet travel,electronic communication, and computers allowed the outsourcing of manufacture.
The spread of air conditioning allowed even the too hot south to be a location. First in the US as the factories began their march through the non union southern states onto Mexico. Management from the north could now live in air conditioned houses, drive air conditioned cars and work in air conditioned offices.
The 70s oil inflation led to stagnation as the unionized labor were powerful enough to get cost of living raises. With the globalization of labor union power in the US has been destroyed. As Eric X Li points out China's one party rule actually changes policies easier than the Western democracies.
So China's government hasn't joined in with the West in just creating wealth for the top 1% and debt for the real economy.
As b. pointed out, the Anglo Zionist policies created the mutual benefit partnership of Russia and China. The Chinese belt and road initiative appears to be intent on creating a large trading zone that could benefit those involved. The US is just using sanctions and the military to turn sovereign functioning countries that don't go along with it into failed states and their infrastructure turned to rubbleNow, the US is forced into puppeteering the UN in order to maintain the illusion of the 'rules based order,' even as it slides further and further away from any meaningful international cooperation:Passer by , Sep 22 2020 20:15 utc | 16
Fortunately for the world, the United States took responsible action to stop this from happening. In accordance with our rights under UNSCR 2231, we initiated the snapback process to restore virtually all previously terminated UN sanctions, including the arms embargo. The world will be safer as a result.
The United States expects all UN Member States to fully comply with their obligations to implement these measures. In addition to the arms embargo, this includes restrictions such as the ban on Iran engaging in enrichment and reprocessing-related activities, the prohibition on ballistic missile testing and development by Iran, and sanctions on the transfer of nuclear- and missile-related technologies to Iran, among others. If UN Member States fail to fulfill their obligations to implement these sanctions, the United States is prepared to use our domestic authorities to impose consequences for those failures and ensure that Iran does not reap the benefits of UN-prohibited activity.
https://www.state.gov/the-return-of-un-sanctions-on-the-islamic-republic-of-iran/Any type of enmity btw the two countries under Trump is pure theater.foolisholdman , Sep 22 2020 20:22 utc | 17
Posted by: NemesisCalling | Sep 22 2020 20:07 utc | 10
Actually the Trump Administration has done far more against Russia than all US administrations from the last 30 years. Do not listen what they say, look at what they do. Right now the US in a full blown Cold War with Russia with ever increasing attacks.Pompeo talks more or less continually about "China's bullying behaviour". To me it is wonderful that he can say this with a straight face. (Perhaps it is a result of his lessons in the CIA on "how to lie better".)All the countries that have engaged with China have benefitted from it, whether as salesmen or as recipients of aid or loans at advantageous rates. The countries that have engaged with America have mostly (All?) lost. (The fifty+ countries invaded and wrecked since WW2 or the NATO "allies" or the countries attacked with sanctions.) Either their economies were destroyed or billions upon billions of dollars were paid to the US MIC. The NATO member countries have got what from their membership? Formerly, they had "Protection" from an imaginary Soviet threat, more recently "Protection" from an equally imaginary Russian threat! Some bargain, that!Christian J. Chuba , Sep 22 2020 20:38 utc | 18Rules based international order .... the U.S. functions as the the Supreme Court for the U.N. , 'we have invoked snapback sanctions and extended the arms embargo on Iran indefinitely and are enforcing it'. UN, 'but your vote failed'.psychohistorian , Sep 22 2020 20:41 utc | 19
U.S, 'we have the right to seize cargo between any two countries transported in international waters based on U.S. federal appeals court decision even though the transaction in no way involves the U.S. We call this Freedom of Navigation and why we need to have aircraft carriers in the South China Sea and Arabian Gulf'
We are completely and totally insane.Rules based International Order is the dog whistle for global private finance controlled economies. It is sad that we are in a civilization war with China/Russia about who runs international finance going forward and yet there is no discussion of the subject but instead all sorts of proxy conflicts.profk , Sep 22 2020 20:59 utc | 22
Thanks for the posting b as it gets to the core myths around the global private finance jackboot on the neck of countries in the West.The US is not just facing relative decline -- the fact that others are catching up in key ways. The US is also facing absolute decline -- the fact that it is suffering a degradation of capacities and is losing competitive battles in key areas. Examples of absolute decline include the Russian and Chinese military-technological revolutions based on anti-ship and hypersonic missiles and air defense systems; Chinese 5G; China's demonstrative success in suppressing COVID and its overall manufacturing power; the declining quality of life for most Americans; and the collapse of American institutional competence.jayc , Sep 22 2020 21:01 utc | 23
Related to this, we can't separate these dynamics from the political economy of the states in question. China, in particular, is showing that an interventionist state, with high levels of public ownership, is essential to qualitative power, human security, and economic and social development.
Capitalism might enrich a few, but it is the primary cause of America's relative and absolute decline.US and allied military analysts have been talking over the last year or so of the need to enter a single focus and total "wartime" posture throughout our societies, with all financial and industrial output directed to the "war". This has influenced the information/ propaganda efforts, but also the uptick in military manoeuvres around Taiwan and renewed NATO pressure directed at Russia (including the recent provocative B52 flights). Don't think Russia/China can be tricked into over-reacting, but some kind of loss-of-life military confrontation may be what the rules-based side is looking for as the population at large will probably not accept a "wartime sacrifice" regimen without such.Kiza , Sep 22 2020 21:26 utc | 26Very well written article.Leser , Sep 22 2020 21:42 utc | 29
Whilst Russia and China are creating a truly new, unique and creative alliance and a market of everything, in Australia the "authorities" are sicking their police dogs on poor grannies sitting on park benches. This image of five brainless armed state goons in a show of force over two quiet little grannies really puts things into perspective. It must be that New World Order that Soros and puppets always talked about.
Psssst, learning Russian is easier than Chinese and we already know a few Russian words, such as novichok.Great analysis b and connecting the dots.uncle tungsten , Sep 22 2020 21:59 utc | 32
The post scriptum stopped the clock for me. Has our host slipped into our drink there a profound prophecy, disguised as jesting?
Many agree something big will happen (break?) soon, possibly with the elections. The other thing is the Americans' ability to change course, drop all baggage, and run off in a new, even the opposite direction with unfettered enthusiasm (and ferocity). No people has a greater capacity for almost instant renewal, once it chooses to.
I also notice that the spoof takes good aim at The Donald's peculiarities, though in a fair and human way. The proverbial Russian warmth, or a humorous invitation?
Meanwhile, I enjoy my newfound optimism in these dark times. Thanks b!Thanks b and on Anatol Lieven in the Prospect story (fairy story?)...Jackrabbit , Sep 22 2020 22:09 utc | 33Russia after the Cold War was a shambles and today it remains a weak economy with a limited role on the world stage, concerned mainly with retaining some of its traditional areas of influence. China is a vastly more formidable competitor. If the US (and the UK, if as usual we tag along) approach the relationship with Beijing with anything like the combination of arrogance, ignorance, greed, criminality, bigotry, hypocrisy and incompetence with which western elites managed the period after the Cold War, then we risk losing the competition and endangering the world. [my emphasis]
Lieven simply does not see it. Has it ever occurred to Lieven that colonialism just might be rejected by both Russia and China and that there might be no competition? Does Lieven watch too much football?
What is it that endangers the world in Lieven's petite cortex? This verbose Lieven tosh is littered with fancy sentences trawled from here and there but always presented to us from a narrow dimensional mind with limited analysis and seemingly zero interrogation.
again:- "then we risk losing the competition and endangering the world"...
So Lieven thinks the current behaviour of the US hegemon and its collaborator the UK is innocuous? These were the two nations that blithely squandered the "peace dividend" from the end of cold war as he describes and have led us to this time of perpetual war. A perpetual war that he does not mention, does not allude to, does not treat as an important driver behind the current global mistrust and disengagement from the USUK drive for global dominance.
Lieven is putting lipstick on his pig and screaming about losing the competition to the imagined wolf outside his prison.
Beneath contempt.Passer by @Sep22 19:43 #8uncle tungsten , Sep 22 2020 22:53 utc | 36It is not over in the sense that the West hasn't given up in its attempts to take over the world.I agree. The contest between the Empire and the upstarts is not over by a long shot. What the West HAS lost is the "inevitability" argument. But for the upstarts to actually prevail in their "multi-lateral" vision, they have to actually entice countries to join them despite threats and intimidation from the Empire.
Passer by @Sep22 20:15 #14Right now the US in a full blown Cold War with Russia with ever increasing attacks.Yes. We still see the narratives like of Trump as Putin-lover despite the debunking of Russiagate and the clear evidence of Cold War tensions. The incessant propaganda reeks of desperation.
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Some seem to think that the Empire is cornered.
Aha! We've got you now, you scoundrels!
The Empire's power-elite KNOW that Russia, China, and allies of Russia-China don't want to be subject to their "rules-based order". The Empire is actively working to undermine, subvert, and divide the countries that oppose it. While also securing their own territories/population via intimidation and propaganda.
!!On rules based disorder and the capitulation of Merkel and her BND lapdogs to the 'hate Russia' fulminations of the UKUSA morons. I see that the German Parliament has NOT TAKEN its red pills these days and is reluctant to swallow the BS. It would be satisfying to see the collective wisdom of the Parliament to exceed that of the BND. But then that is a low bar.karlof1 , Sep 22 2020 22:55 utc | 37An excellent look into the seemingly mundane but important business of negotiating arms control agreements is offered here: Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov's interview with the newspaper Kommersant, published on September 22, 2020 . Excerpt:Passer by , Sep 22 2020 23:07 utc | 39
"For our part, we more than once described a balanced and mutually acceptable framework for future agreements in this sphere during our contacts with the American negotiators. Aware of the difficulties on the path forward in light of how widely different our approaches are, we proposed extending the New START as it was originally signed.
"We do not want any unilateral advantages, but we will not make any unilateral concessions either. A deal may be possible if the United States is ready to coordinate a new document on the basis of the balance of interests, parity and without expecting Russia to make unilateral concessions. But this will take time. We can have time to do this if the treaty is extended."
As predicted, the Outlaw US Empire makes an offer it knows will be refused so it can then blame Russia for being an unreliable negotiating partner--a trick we've all seen before.
Lavrov conducted a short interview with Sputnik mostly about Belarus and Ukraine and much of which is a rehash.@Jackrabbit | Sep 22 2020 22:09 utc | 31kiwiklown , Sep 22 2020 23:41 utc | 41
I agree. The contest between the Empire and the upstarts is not over by a long shot. What the West HAS lost is the "inevitability" argument. But for the upstarts to actually prevail in their "multi-lateral" vision, they have to actually entice countries to join them despite threats and intimidation from the Empire.
Yes, the big question remaining is to predict what will happen and when. This is what the real deal is. And I'm sure they are working on that in the Intel agencies. It can certainly be predicted that the US and the EU will be significantly weaker in 2030 that today. Will this be enough is the question.
We now have some new information about US long term health as published by CBO. Very interesting numbers.
They predict lower population growth and lower GDP growth for the US than previously estimated, as well as higher debt rates. US federal debt is to reach 195 % of GDP by 2050 under best case scenario.
Analysts also seem to agree that the Covid 19 crisis further weakened the US vis a vis China, as the Chinese economy significantly outperformed almost everyone else this year, more than expected before the crisis.
I will also mention two important recent numbers. This year:
1. China, for the first time, became the biggest trading partner for the EU, beating the US.
2. China's retail market overtook the one of the US.Posted by: vk | Sep 22 2020 19:05 utc | 4 -- "....Eurasia is where most of human civilization lives, it's the "World Island" - the world island not in the military sense, but in the economic sense. Every path to human prosperity passes through Eurasia - that's why the USA can't "let it alone" in the first place, while the reverse is not true, that is, Eurasia can give to the luxury of letting the Americas alone."Paul , Sep 23 2020 0:02 utc | 43
Excellent observation, VK.
Even if the World Island (thanks for your formulation) trades with itself, within itself, there is sufficient mass to last a century, during which the arrogantly exceptional West might just wake up from their Century of Humiliation.
Meanwhile, inertia alone will ensure that the West forgets that their vaunted "civilisation" was fed, watered, enriched by the Silk Route that came from the East -- from the Middle Kingdom (China) and from the Middle East (which is "middle", as you pointed out above, because all wealth passes through that region).Yes there are rules which are observed more by their breach than their observance: The Geneva Conventions. Just ask Julian Assange.Jen , Sep 23 2020 0:09 utc | 44
I find it incredible that the Anglo-Zionist captive nations can sign, ratify, incorporate into domestic law and then sign the additional protocol, making themselves high contracting parties, which requires them to report all and any breaches to Geneva, then ignore all the above commitments. One of these commitments includes educating their citizens on the basic provisions of the conventions. Again they haven't bothered, that could expose their hypocrisy to the public.
Even the bandit statelet signed but I am yet to see just one example of its application in the seventy plus years of its barbaric and bloodthirsty occupation of Palestine.
Interestingly, the conventions prohibit the occupied from signing away one iota of their territory to the occupier. So much for what Claude Pictet's Commentary to the Fourth Geneva Convention calls "alleged annexations." This book is available from the ICRC.
My late father as an army officer prosecuted Japanese war criminals for their atrocities now the Anglo-Zionists are the pre-eminent war criminals and their leaders loudly proclaim "our values" as a pathological and propagandistic form of projection. Is it possible they are unaware of their blatant hypocrisy ?
It seems the New World Order has some familiar and unsurprising antecedents:
Hold on tight, hubris is always fatal:
Uncle Tungsten @ 30:Richard Steven Hack , Sep 23 2020 0:54 utc | 47
Anatol Lieven comes from an educated and cultured family in Britain's upper middle class layer. His older siblings - he is the youngest of five children - include a High Court judge (Dame Natalie Lieven), a Cambridge University professor / historian (Dominic Lieven) and a psychologist / linguistics researcher (Elena Lieven). They haven't done badly for a family from the old Baltic German aristocratic elite that used to serve the Russian empire as administrators for the Livonia governorate.
The British Lievens might see themselves as gatekeepers and interpreters of what the ruling classes desire (or appear to desire) and communicate that down to us. Hence their positions in intellectual and academic occupations - no engineers, technicians or academics in the physical or biological sciences among their number.
Anatol Lieven is right though about "competition", in the sense I believe he is using it: it is "competition" for supposed global leadership and influence as only the British and Americans understand it. Life as British and American elites understand it is the annual football competition writ large; there can only be one winner and the worst position to be in is second place and every other place below it. Never mind that what Russia and China have in mind is a vision of the world with multiple and overlapping leadership roles dispersed among nations according to various criteria: this ideal is simply too much for the Anglosphere elites to understand, let alone digest and accept.
Still, I wonder why Anatol Lieven is teaching in a university in Qatar of all places. Family influence and reputation must only go so far.Posted by: lizard | Sep 22 2020 21:59 utc | 29Jun , Sep 23 2020 1:06 utc | 48
if you aren't at least a little prepared for a disruption in critical supplies, and choose instead to waste time commenting on online forums, it won't matter how up to date you are on "rules based international order" vs. "international law". at that point the reality will be something like this: if you aren't holding it, you don't have it, and if you can't defend it, you won't be keeping it for long.
Got that absolutely right.
There is no "international law" and no "international order." There is only relative power. And when those powers clash, as seems inevitable, the world is in for a major nuclear war, and probably preceded by several more regional wars. Meanwhile, the US internally is collapsing into economic disaster, social unrest, political and social oppression, infrastructure failure, and medical disasters. We'll probably be in martial law sometime between November 3 and January 21 if not beyond that period, just for starters.
This month is National Preparedness Month. I recommend watching the following videos from well-known "preppers" who have been warning about this stuff for years.
78 Days Will Determine the Fate of America
5 Things You Need To Do Before the U.S. Election
A playlist of 23 videos for National Preparedness Month:
30 Days of Preparedness Collaboration - 2020
And this one from The Urban Prepper, an IT guy who is exceptionally well organized and logical in his videos. I recommend subscribing to his channel. He avoids most of the excessive "doom and gloom" hype that afflicts a lot of prepper channels and is oriented more about urban survival than "backwoods bushcraft" since most people live in cities.
Prepping 101: Prepping Architecture Diagram for Gear Organization
And if you don't watch anything else, watch this one from Canadian Prepper - he's absolutely right in this one and it specifically applies to the barflies here:
What is Really Going On? Its WORSE Than You ThinkMeanwhile, inertia alone will ensure that the West forgets that their vaunted "civilisation" was fed, watered, enriched by the Silk Route that came from the East -- from the Middle Kingdom (China) and from the Middle East (which is "middle", as you pointed out above, because all wealth passes through that region).Richard Steven Hack , Sep 23 2020 1:19 utc | 50
Posted by: kiwiklown | Sep 22 2020 23:41 utc | 39
Thereby we have the answer to America's longest war:
https://twitter.com/danieldumbrill/status/1290456155286900737?lang=enOh, and this one from Canadian Prepper in which he muses about whether and why we actually *want* the SHTF situation to occur. This one would resonate with a lot of the commentary here about the social malaise and the psychological reasons for it. Maybe nothing really new for some, but definitely relevant.uncle tungsten , Sep 23 2020 1:47 utc | 51
Society is Collapsing: Prepare for the Next PhaseJen #42ak74 , Sep 23 2020 2:15 utc | 52Still, I wonder why Anatol Lieven is teaching in a university in Qatar of all places. Family influence and reputation must only go so far.
Thank you that backgrounder explains a lot. Perhaps like Englanders before him he finds Qatar, safe and rewarding PLUS mounds of finest hashish and titillating company. From my understanding it is a grotesque abuser of human rights and everyone has a price.America's "Rules-Based International Order" is a Goebbelsian euphemism for a Lies-Based Imperial Order, led by the USA and its war criminal allies (aka the self-styled Free World).Erelis , Sep 23 2020 3:01 utc | 53
The true nature of this America-led order is exposed by the USA's war of aggression against Iraq (which violated international law and had no United Nations sanction) and its decades-long War on Terrorism, which have murdered hundreds of thousands of people and maimed, immiserated, or refugeed millions of more people. These crimes against humanity have been justified by Orwellian American lies about "Weapons of Mass Destruction," "fighting terrorism," or the curious events of Sept. 11th.
This America "Rules-Based" order is one drenched in the blood of millions of people--even as it sanctimoniously disguises itself behind endless propaganda about defending liberal democracy or the rule of law.
Truly, America and its allies can take their malignant Rules-Based Disorder back to Hell, where they all belong.
Two decades of US "war on terror" responsible for displacing at least 37 million people and killing up to 12 million
Posted by: karlof1 | Sep 23 2020 0:50 utc | 44uncle tungsten , Sep 23 2020 3:02 utc | 54
"Thus your "side note" has no "relevance" whatsoever."
You sound like some podunk UN official from a podunk country trying to impress a waitress in a NYC bar. The Empire is very much alive and dangerous. Ask Iran, ask Syria, as the Palestinians, ask the Russians, ask the Chinese. Ask numerous African nations. Even Pangloss was not so stupidly naive.Jun #46milomilo , Sep 23 2020 3:33 utc | 55
Thank you - YES that is the answer and always has been PLUS there will be no pipeline from Iran through Afghanistan to Pakistan and on to China. There will be NO overland pipeline or rail route to sound the death knell to the maritime mafia.Please vote for trump 2020. no president destroy America from inside like what trump did. The goal is to accelerate American empire destruction and grip in this world. What better way to put such clown along his circus in white house. he will make a mess of everything and will definitely bring America downmilomilo , Sep 23 2020 3:37 utc | 56
i hope he win 2020 and America explode into civil war and chaos. With America destroyed internally , they wont have time to invade Venezuela or IranRemember , if Biden win 2020 , American foreign policy will revert into normalcy that means seeking alliance with EU and 5 eyes in a more meaningful way , aka giving them preferential treatment on trade..defaultcitizen , Sep 23 2020 3:41 utc | 57
all that to box in china and russia , reenable TPP , initiate the delayed venezuela overt invasion other than covert
this is dangerous for the whole world , not that it will save US in the long run but it will increase real shooting conflict with china and russia.. So focus on trump victory in 2020 , the more controversial the win the better , lets push america into chaosI appreciate the time and thought that goes into a post like this; all without a popup ad trying to sell me ANOTHER item I just bought via Amazon, in spite of the fact that I am among the least likely to want another right now. Voice of reason crying in the wilderness and all that.j. casey , Sep 23 2020 12:28 utc | 75
The rule The Capitalist Ogres promote as the heart of Civilization is simply the age-old Golden Rule. Those with the gold, make the rules.In the very short-term (3 months?) what is the outcome of US/Nato seizure of ships and cargo in international water?chris m , Sep 23 2020 13:42 utc | 79@ptbchris m , Sep 23 2020 13:47 utc | 80
quite right. 'Rules based order' was always a euphemism for exceptionalism of one kind or another. ie US and its "allies" is basically asking the rest of the world to finance their (the US et al) version of a welfare state.
as US et al can no longer fund their own unaffordable welfare promises made to their own electorates, they have to call on the rest of the world to do so (China has been effectively funding the US budget deficit since they entered the WTO.
and the EU (mainly Germany) was doing the same before China's entry into WTO)
China and rest of the worlds foreign central banks stopped growing their foreign exchange reserves (on net) in 2014
leaving the US in a sort of limbo.PS addendum: if you've ever wondered who has been financing the GWOT since 2001; it was the Chinese.karlof1 , Sep 23 2020 15:21 utc | 82chris m @80--karlof1 , Sep 23 2020 16:21 utc | 85
Well, you're sorta correct; it was all those nations including China that bought Outlaw US Empire debt. China certainly knows better now and for almost a decade now it's purchases--and those of the rest of the world -- of said debt have declined to the point where a huge crisis related to the debt pyramid threatens all those aside from the 1% living within the Outlaw US Empire. The Judo involved was very instructive."Trump's UN address censured" headlines Global Times article that reviews yesterday's UNGA. Domestic BigLie Media didn't like what it heard from Trump:vk , Sep 23 2020 16:40 utc | 86
"Commenting on the US' performance, many Western media tended to view US as being 'isolated,' and its unilateral efforts 'widely derided....'
"Some US media outlets cannot stand Trump's accusations. A WSJ report said many Democrats blamed Trump for "isolating the US and diluting American influence in the WHO or other bodies."
It went on to say Trump's threat of withdrawal is often used as leverage to "influence partner countries, or get allies to pay more for shared defense."
"Some US media linked Trump's address to his widely blamed effort to re-impose sanctions on Iran, saying his address came as 'UN members push back against Washington,' AP reported.
"Wednesday's Washington Post article reported that the Trump administration walked on a 'lonely path' at the UN where the US attacked WHO, and embarked on the 'widely derided' effort to snap back Iran sanctions.
"A week before the UN General Assembly, US media NPR predicted that the US 'appeared to be isolated' at this year's General Assembly, saying that Trump's 'America First' agenda left him out of sync with America's traditional allies as it has a long record of pulling out of international agreements, including one meant to tackle the world's climate crisis."
So, Trump's attack on China's environmental record was beyond hypocritical and ought to be termed psychopathic prevarication. The best comment from the article well describes the Trumptroll @53:
"'Trump's smears and attacks against China were apparently aimed at campaigning for his reelection. Only his die-hard fans - those who do not care about truth but support him - will buy his words ,' Ding Yifan, a researcher at the Institute of World Development of the Development Research Center of the State Council, told the Global Times." [My Emphasis]
And isn't that really the basic issue--the truth? 75 years of lies by the Outlaw US Empire to cover it's continuous illegalities and subversion of its own fundamental law while killing and displacing tens of millions of people. Guardian of the Free World my ass! More like Guardian of the Gates of Hell.More on the situation of the "rules based international order":karlof1 , Sep 23 2020 16:45 utc | 87
The Eurozone economy stopped recovering and stagnated in September (PMI)
And here's a more general picture on the state of global capitalism today:
The 90% world economy (UNCTAD report)Yes, I'm biased, but anyone seeking truth and invoking the Rule of Law would find themselves at odds with the Outlaw US Empire. Today's Global Times Editorial makes the following key observations:psychohistorian , Sep 23 2020 17:07 utc | 88
"Major powers maintaining cooperation, at least not engaging in Cold War-style antagonism, is the important foundation of world peace. China is committed to maintaining cooperation among major powers, as well as being flexible in the balance of interests acceptable to all parties. The problem is the Trump administration is hysterically shaping decoupling and confrontation between Beijing and Washington, and has been mobilizing more forces to its side at home and abroad. Those US policymakers are deliberately splitting the world like during the Cold War.
"The impulse to promote a cold war is the ultimate version of unilateralism, and shows dangerous and mistaken arrogance that the US is almighty. Everyone knows that the US is declining in its competitiveness under the rules-based international system the US itself initiated and created. It wants to build a new system more beneficial to itself, and allow the US to maintain its advantage without making any effort. This is simply impossible."
My research is pointing me to conclude the First Cold War was contrived so the Outlaw US Empire could impose privately owned finance and corporations and the political-economies connected to them upon the world lest the collective forces that were the ones to actually defeat Fascism gain control of their national governments and shape their political-economies into the public/collectively owned realm where the benefits would flow to all people instead of just the already powerful. That's also the intent of imposing a Second Cold War. Some seem to think there's no ideological divide at play, but as I've ceaselessly explained there most certainly is, thus the intense demonization of both Russia and China--the Strategic Competition also is occurring in the realm of Ideas. And the only tools available for the Outlaw US Empire to use are lies, since the truths involved would encourage any neutral nation to join the Win-Win vision of China and Russia, not the Zero-sum bankruptcy pushed by the Parasites controlling the Empire.@ karlof1 | Sep 23 2020 15:56 utc | 84 and forward with the links and quotes...thanksTimothy Hagios , Sep 23 2020 17:19 utc | 90
I do like the confirmation Pepe quote, thanks
It is sad to understand that much of the US population does not have the mental clarity to see that Trump is no different than Biden when it comes to fealty to the God of Mammon. Way too many Americans think that replacing Trump with Biden will make things all better.
The end of the rules based international order/global private finance cannot end soon enough, IMOfarm ecologist @ 89karlof1 , Sep 23 2020 18:07 utc | 92
Patrick Armstrong publishes the sitreps (and other content) at https://patrickarmstrong.ca/psychohistorian @88--profk , Sep 23 2020 18:16 utc | 94
Thanks for your reply! As I discussed with the Missus last night, IMO only the people regaining control over the federal government can rescue themselves from the multiple dilemmas they face--the most pressing being the Debt Bomb and control of the monetary and fiscal systems by private entities as exemplified by the Federal Reserve and Wall Street, both of which employ the Financial Parasites preying on the nation's body-politic. Undoing all the past wrongs requires both Congress and the Executive be captured by The People who can then write the laws to end the wrongs while arresting and prosecuting those responsible for the last 20+ years of massive fraud. The biggest components would be ending the Federal Reserve, Nationalizing all the fraudster banks, writing down the vast majority of debt, and disbanding NATO thus ending the overseas empire. Those are the most fundamental steps required for the USA to avoid the coming calamity brought about by the Neoliberals. I also have finally developed my thesis on where, why and how that philosophy was developed and put into motion.karlof,karlof1 , Sep 23 2020 20:01 utc | 96
The first 'Cold War' was entirely contrived. The US knew the Soviet Union was weak and had no agenda beyond maintaining security and its own reconstruction after WW2. There was no threat of a Western European invasion, or of the USSR spreading revolution globally. All that Cold War ideology is a lie. And the same lying is taking place about China today. No difference.
The key issues for the US were:
1. it needed western european capitalist states to buy US manufactured exports. Those states had to remain capitalist and subordinate to the US, i.e. to avoid what Acheson called 'neutralism' in world politics.
2. the US wanted gradual decolonization of the British and French empires so that US firms could access markets and resources in those same territories. but the US feared revolutionary nationalism in the colonies and the potential loss of market access by the former colonial powers, which would need resources from the post-colonial world to rebuild after WW2.
The key event which cemented the 'Cold War' in Europe was the division of Germany, which Carolyn Eisenberg shows was entirely an American decision, in her important book, Drawing the Line.
The driving force of all this, though, was the economic imperatives of US capitalism. The US needed to restore and save capitalism in Western Europe and Japan, and the Cold War was the ideological framework for doing so. The Cold War ideology also allowed the US to frame its meddling in Korea, Guatemala, Iran, etc.
The late historian Gabriel Kolko wrote the best analyses of these issues. His work is much better than the New Left 'revisionist' US historians.profk @94--karlof1 , Sep 23 2020 20:16 utc | 97
I agree with your recap and second your appraisal of Gabriel Kolko. Eisenberg's work somehow escaped my view but will no longer thanks to your suggestion.
But I see more to it all as the First Cold War had to occur to promote the financialization of the USA's industrial Capitalism which began within the USA in 1913 and was abruptly interrupted by the various market crashes, the failure of the international payments system and subsequent massive deflation and Great Depression. A similar plan to outsource manufactures to its colonies and commonwealth and financialize its economy was began in the UK sometime after the end of the US Civil War. At the time in England, the school of Classical Political-Economists and their political allies (CPE) were attempting to rid the UK and the rest of Europe of the last vestiges of Feudalism that resided in the Rentier and Banking Classes, the former being mostly populated by Royalty and its retainers. Land Rent was the primary source of their income while it was the stated intent of the CPE to change the tax burden from individuals and businesses to that of Land Rent and other forms of Unearned Income. That movement came swiftly on the heels of the abolition of the Slave Trade which was a vast source of Royal income. Recognizing this threat to the basis of their wellbeing, the Royals needed to turn the tables but in such a manner where their manipulation was secret because of the vast popularity of the CPE's agenda. Thus began the movement to discredit the CPE and remove their ideas from discourse and later completely from the history of political-economy. And there was another problem--German Banks and their philosophy inspired by Bismarck to be totally supportive of German industry, which provided the impetus for its own colonial pursuits primarily in Africa.
Within that paragraph is my thesis for the rise of Neoliberalism, much of which Dr. Hudson documents but hasn't yet gotten to/revealed the root cause of the counter revolution against the CPE. IMO, that reactionary movement underlies far more, particularly the growing animosity between the UK and Germany from 1875 to 1914. As Eisenberg's research proves, there's much more past to be revealed that helps to resolve how we arrived at the times we now face.CitizenX @95--uncle tungsten , Sep 23 2020 21:21 utc | 98
Indeed, as Hudson and Max Keiser ask: Why pay taxes at all since the Fed can create all the credit required. I've written about the pros and cons of Secession here before which are quite similar to those existing in 1861. In Washington for example, how to deal with all the Federal property located there. Just as Ft. Sumter didn't belong to South Carolina, the many military bases there don't belong to Washington. Trying to seize it as the South Carolinians attempted in 1861 merely creates the casus belli sought by Trump. Now if you could get the vast majority of the military stationed in Washington to support your cause, your odds of resisting would greatly improve.
IMO, trying to regain public control over the Federal government would be much easier.karlof1 #85karlof1 , Sep 23 2020 22:48 utc | 101
Thank you brother karlof1, YES, the minotaur indeed but where is Theseus and Ariadne when we need them? Please don't tell me that Biden and Harris are the 'chosen ones' - that would mock the legend and prove that the gods are truly crazy :))ooops *elicit* uncle tungsten @98--karlof1 , Sep 24 2020 0:31 utc | 103
Well, they've clearly been chosen; they're just not THE CHOSEN and IMO would never qualify.
By contrast, here's Maduro's UNGA statement , a man clearly superior in all respects to either Biden or Trump or any of their vassals.It seems to me that a review is required, that we need to turn back the clock to an earlier analysis whose veracity has only been boosted by subsequent events. So here from 2011: "On November 3, 2011, Alan Minsky interviewed me on KPFK's program, 'Building a Powerful Movement in the United States' in preparation for an Occupy L.A. teach-in." Here's a brief excerpt to remind people what this is all about:Billosky , Sep 24 2020 6:19 utc | 104
"Once people realize that they're being screwed, that's a pre-revolutionary situation. It's a situation where they can get a lot of sympathy and support, precisely by not doing what The New York Times and the other papers say they should do: come up with some neat solutions. They don't have to propose a solution because right now there isn't one – without changing the system with many, many changes. So many that it's like a new Constitution. Politics as well as the economy need to be restructured. What's developing now is how to think about the economic and political problems that are bothering people. It is not radical to realize that the economy isn't working. That is the first stage to realizing that a real alternative is needed. We've been under a radical right-wing attack – and need to respond in kind. The next half-year probably will be spent trying to spell out what the best structure would be."It's good to see discussion here of the nefarious role of the American far-right neocon warmongers in the State Department, intelligence services and military leadership just before the turn of the new century. What I have never seen clearly explained, however, is the connection between these very dangerous forces and the equally cynical and reactionary Israeli politicians and the Mossad, as well as Saudi Arabian officials.Piotr Berman , Sep 24 2020 14:04 utc | 106
Like many others, I have been slowly won over to the position that the attacks of 9-11, and especially the totally unprecedented collapses of the three WTC towers, could only have been caused by the precisely timed explosion of previously installed demolition materials containing nanothermite. But if one accepts that position the immediately subsequent question is "Who planned and carried out the attacks?" Many people have claimed it was the Mossad, others that it was the Mossad in concert with the US neocons etc., -- many of whom were Israeli/US dual citizens -- but even now, so many years after the horrific events, I can find no coherent account of how such conspirators, or any others for that matter, might actually have carried out WTC building demotions. Do any of you know of sources on the matter that have made good progress on connecting the dots and explaining what precisely happened -- the easier part -- and how exactly it was carried out, by whom, and how they have managed to get away with it for all this time?Lieven: If the US (and the UK, if as usual we tag along) approach the relationship with Beijing with anything like the combination of arrogance, ignorance, greed, criminality, bigotry, hypocrisy and incompetence with which western elites managed the period after the Cold War, then we risk losing the competition and endangering the world.[my emphasis]Noirette , Sep 24 2020 16:24 utc | 108
Uncle Tungsten: Lieven simply does not see it. Has it ever occurred to Lieven that colonialism just might be rejected by both Russia and China and that there might be no competition? Does Lieven watch too much football?
What is it that endangers the world in Lieven's petite cortex?
It is clear to me that Tungsten does not understand Lieven because Lieven does not cross all t's and dot all i's. There can be two reasons for Lieven style: (1) a British style, leaving some conclusions to the reader, it is not elegant to belabor the obvious (2) Lieven works in a pro-Western feudal state and that particular piece appeared in a neo-liberal outfit where it is already a clear outlier toward (what I see as) common sense. Neo-liberals view themselves as liberals, "tolerating a wide spectrum of opinion", but with clear limits about the frequency and content for the outliers of their tolerance.
Back to "endangering the world", how "loosing competition to China" can result in huge mayhem? I guess that Tungsten is a little dense here. The sunset of Anglo-Saxon domination can seem like the end of the world for the "members" of that domination. But a longer historical perspective can offer a much darker vision of the future. First, there is a clash of two blocks, one with superior industrial production, domination of markets of assorted goods -- both as importer and exporter, etc, the other with still superior military technology and combative spirit.
Recall (or check) the situation in east Asia ca. 1240 AD. One of the major power was Song China, after a calamitous defeat roughly 300 years later, diminished Song China succeeded in developing all kinds of practical and beautiful goods and vibrant commerce while having quite inept military. The second major power was the Mongols. You can look up the rest.
USA stresses the military types of pressures, and seeing its position slipping too far, they may resort to a series of gigantic "provocations" -- from confiscation of property by fiat, like they did to Venezuela, to piracy on open seas, no cargoes can move without their approval and tribute, from there things can escalate toward nuclear war.
More generally, western decline leads to decrease of wealth affecting the lower classes first but gradually reaching higher, enmity toward competitors, then hatred, such processes can have dire consequences.
Importantly, these are speculations, so stopping short of spelling them out is reasonable. However, give some credit to Lieven for "the combination of arrogance, ignorance, greed, criminality, bigotry, hypocrisy and incompetence with which western elites managed the period after the Cold War".On the rule-based world order. Scattered thoughts.Passer by , Sep 24 2020 20:06 utc | 109
The article by Lieven was good in one aspect: it at least mentioned the crazy economic template aka imho 'religion' that lead to a part of this mess. For the rest, hmm. The 'rules based international order' was always pretty much a phoney scaffold, used for presentation to hide, cover up, legitimised many goings on (after WW2 I mean.)
Like a power-point extolling xyz product, with invented or 'massaged' charts and all., with tick boxes for what it positive or followed. (Fairness, Democracy, etc. etc. as 'Natural' 'Organic' etc. Total BS.)
In these kinds of discussions I am always reminded of the 'rights of the child' which in CH are taught in grade 3-5, with a boiled down text, logo type pix, etc. It is very tough on teachers, and they often only pretend to push the content. There are many immigrant children in CH and the natives know that the 'rights' are not respected and not just in 'jungles' (anarchist / animalistic hot spots) as they say. The kids go nuts - as they still more or less believe that they 'have a voice' as it called -- the parents follow the kids, lotsa troubles. OK, these are aspirations - but 'democracy' (purposely used as a calling card following advice from a well-know ad agency..) is so as well. And presenting aspirations that can't possibly be achieved in any way, when not a smiley joke about meeting God or flying to Mars, and is socially important, is not well received.
Anyway, since the invasion of Iraq (totally illegal according to any standards) leading to the biggest demos in the world ever, a loud indignant cry, which invasion the UN condoned, ppl (in my experience, in CH, F, It) no longer have a shred of belief in 'international rules'. Which of course makes them more 'nationalist' in the sense of acting in the community, close at hand, as the Intl order is a shit-scene.Do you have sources for the last two facts, about China overtaking the US as main trading partner to Europe and as retail market?
Posted by: fx | Sep 24 2020 11:41 utc | 105
China becomes EU's top trading partner from Jan-July: Eurostat
China retail market expected to overtake US this year
Sep 25, 2020 | www.moonofalabama.org
Ashino , Sep 23 2020 9:23 utc | 67http://smoothiex12.blogspot.com/2020/09/russia-steals-everything.htmlAshino , Sep 23 2020 9:29 utc | 68
Comment by Reader Dark Fate
Following a long line of very arrogant american imperial "negotiators", mr oblivion billingslea used standard "negotiating" techniques like
(a) accusing the other side of crimes Americans have committed first and forever, eg, extreme lying, bad faith argumentation, military aggression, foreign government security breaching, assassination and poisoning [as in american presidents and independent thinkers], and of course, electoral cheating;
(b) putting the opponent in the "negotiation process" on the defensive or back foot by stating false news allegations amplified by the media controlled by the american empire;
(c) offering nothing useful or commitable to be done by the empire, and yet "magnanimously" demanding the moon as opponents' concessions, eg, russian, iranian and chinese nuclear weapons limits, but not for nato's development and deployment, and; (d) after making impossible demands, the imperials accuse the opponents of hostility and unwillingness to "negotiate".
The russians can skillfully agree by stating that they only require the americans to reduce their nukes to 320 pieces like china, and in less than five years.
This is why it is very important for sovereign nations to read the guidebook, called the "idiot's guide on running the american empire", and developing deep and lasting solutions.
As for the other american imperial military "advantages", eg, constellation of "aggression" satellites, andrei forgot to mention that these can be shot or burned down in minutes easily by russia, china and even iran, as these stations cannot hide or run away in earth orbits.
Replenishment of weapons and military supplies after 3 months is rather doomed as the cheap, mass production and manufacturing facilities do not exist. Which must be re-created somehow but now
American lands are the targets. Much, Much Different Than WW2 !!
And of course, russia can always nuke down the USA and its vassal countries, and thus permanently ruin their economies for a decade or more, they don't know how to run defense -- this was always the fatal weakness of all bullies - if they'll have enough time to "learn it"... let's see... I doubt this.
Let's see americans try to start and conduct a nuclear war after too many spy, internet and gps satellites are shot down. Russia can even do this today using conventional explosives, and the world will be shocked how helpless the american military and economy can be made even without using russian nukes.
There are countries still immune to the numerous american imperial diseases that are already documented daily in zerohedge postings. The better countries still have lots of parents telling their kids to study and work hard so they can have better lives than their ancestors.
In oregon and california, they teach unemployable kids to burn something or somebody sometime before dinner.
CdVision • 11 hours ago
I was about to say that what now comes out of the US & Trump's mouth in particular, is Orwellian. But that credits it with too much gravitas. The true comparison is Alice in Wonderland:
"Words mean whatever I want them to mean".Reminiscence of the Future.. ( http://smoothiex12.blogspot.com/2020/09/russia-steals-everything.html)
Russia "Steals Everything" !! (Not just China, oops... ???!!!!)
And Jesus Christ was an American and was born in Kalamazoo, MI. It is a well-known fact. So Donald Trump, evidently briefed by his "utterly competent and crushingly precise aids", knows now that too! !!! LOL
Time For Daily Auto-Hypnosis, Comrades. !!!
> US President Donald Trump claims that Russia developed hypersonic weapons after allegedly stealing information from the United States.
> According to him, "Russia received this information from the Obama administration," Moscow "stole this information." Trump said that "Russia received this information and then created" the rocket, reports TASS.
> "We have such advanced weapons that President Xi, Putin and everyone else will envy us. They do not know what we have, but they know that it is something that no one has ever heard of. "
->We are the foremost and always number one. Everything is invented only by us, the rest can only either steal, or be gifted with our developments for good behavior. This situation is eternal, unchanging, everyone lags behind American Tikhalogii at least 50 years (the time frame was chosen so that even a 20-year-old would lose heart, "what's the point of trying to catch up, it won't work anyway, in my lifetime"). It was, is, and will be, this is the natural course of events.
All this is delivered in the format of the classic Sunday sermon of the American provincial Protestant church, coding the parishioners for further deeds and actions. And it worked effectively, creating in some basalt confidence "we are better because we are better", in others - "I don't mind anything for joining this radiant success, I'm ready for anything, I'll go for any hardships and crimes, if only There".
Only now it worked. In a situation where the frequency of pronouncing such mantras is more and more, emotions are invested in them too, but in fact everyone understands that this is what autohypnosis does not work.
The poor have stolen from the United States, if you look at it, literally everything. And 5G and the superweapon of the gods. Moreover, a pearl with a characteristic handwriting is not copy / paste, but move / paste, you bastards. Therefore, the United States does not even have any traces of developments left - the guys just sit in an empty room, shrug their hands, "here we have a farm of mechanical killer dolls, with the faces of Mickey Mouse overexposed, and now look - traces of bast shoes and candy wrappers from "Korkunov" only, ah-ah-ah, well, something like that, ah. "
At the same time, there are no cases of sabotage, espionage - whole projects were simply developed, developed, brought to a working product, and then the hob - and that's it, and disappeared. And this became noticeable only after years. And all the persons involved are like "wow, wow."
Psychiatric crazy fool of the head, no less.
But due to the fact that all of the above theses are driven very tightly into the template for the perception of the world, both those who voiced these theses and the listeners are satisfied.
Because the post-American post-hegemonic world is not terrible because in some ratings another country will be higher there, and Detroit will never be rebuilt "as it was". It is scary because it is not clear how to live for people who had no support in the form of global goals, faith, philosophy of life, and all this was replaced by narcissism on the basis of "successful success is my second self".
This means that the moment when this issue has to be resolved must be delayed to the last. Leaving the whole topic on the plane "we were offended, we are offended, we were dishonest, which means we have the right to any action" is not a bad move.
It's a pity that it doesn't really affect the essence of what is happening.< >
Sep 25, 2020 | www.moonofalabama.org
uncle tungsten , Sep 22 2020 22:15 utc | 34Colm O' Toole #26David G , Sep 22 2020 22:23 utc | 35
Andre Vltchek whose done some great reporting on China, Russia, and the Middle East over the years was found dead today in Turkey.
Vale great warrior, the world was kept informed by this wonderful spirit and passionate mind. I am very sad to hear of his passing.
His works.Colm O' Toole | Sep 22 2020 21:41 utc | 26:Jen , Sep 22 2020 23:03 utc | 38
I learned about places I've never been reading Vltchek. He will be missed by many.Colm O'Toole @ 26, Uncle Tungsten @ 32, David G @ 33:willie , Sep 23 2020 7:20 utc | 64
I am also sad to hear of Andre Vltchek's passing. He used to be an occasional contributor to Off-Guardian.org.
His death is being treated as suspicious by Turkish police authorities. I myself am rather puzzled by the decision to travel overnight by car from Samsun to Istanbul, given his state of health (according to the report that Colm O'Toole linked to) and the length of the car journey (about nine hours) when he could have travelled by plane.R.I.P DR.Stephen Cohen.
R.I.P. Andre Vitchek.
Maybe his latest outcry hindered some :
Sep 23, 2020 | www.blacklistednews.com
HOW A SENATE INQUIRY REVEALED THE ISRAELI SURVEILLANCE INDUSTRY'S ROLE IN ORCHESTRATING RUSSIAGATE Published: September 13, 2020
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SOURCE: MINT PRESS
A Senate investigation reveals that a consortium of Israeli hacking and surveillance firms coordinated and facilitated meetings between Trump campaign operatives and Russia during the 2016 campaign, but they don't really want to talk about it.
Alleged Russian interference in the 2020 presidential election is headline news, once again, as a Ukrainian lawmaker is charged by the Trump administration "in a sweeping plot to sow distrust in the American political process," reports the Associated Press. Microsoft also made claims that it detected "hacking attempts targeting U.S. political campaigns, parties and consultants" by agents from Russia, China, and Iran. In a September 10 blog post , Microsoft's Tom Burt, Corporate Vice President of Customer Security & Trust, listed three groups from each region that Microsoft "observed" carrying out their cyber operations.
Rarely in the news, however, is the role played by Israeli cybersecurity startups in the creation of the Russiagate narrative itself. Incubated within the Israeli military apparatus and benefiting from an uninterrupted stream of billions in U.S. taxpayer dollars, these "private Mossads" have been present behind the scenes throughout the numerous Russia-related scandals fomented by the mainstream press to sow partisan discord among the American electorate and line the pockets of network executives.
Evidence of their activities has been exposed -- though not pursued -- in the latest volume of a U.S. Senate Intelligence Committee investigation on Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election, which shows how then-candidate Donald Trump personally embarked on a parallel campaign on behalf of Israel to block a UN resolution condemning Israeli settlements in the West Bank and East Jerusalem.
Originally submitted by Egypt, UNSCR 2334 strips Israeli settlements beyond the 1967 borders of any " legal validity " in the eyes of the international community and brands them a "flagrant violation under international law." Russia, a permanent member of the UN Security Council, had refused all of the advances made by Trump's operatives to use its veto power against the measure, and Trump himself would prevail upon Egyptian President al-Sisi -- whom Trump calls his " favorite dictator " -- to withdraw the declaration . Together with Israeli pressure, UNSCR 2334 seemed destined to languish in obscurity as Egypt acquiesced and delayed the vote to "permit them to conduct an additional meeting of the Arab League's foreign ministers to work on the resolution's wording."
The Senate's inquiries uncovered a consistent thread of IDF-linked cybersecurity firms and intelligence assets coordinating and facilitating meetings between the coterie of Russian characters that make up the Russiagate universe and the Trump campaign, including protagonists like Guccifer 2.0, the hacker who released Hilary Clinton's infamous emails to Wikileaks via a cell phone registered in Israel.
George Birnbaum, a former chief of staff to Benjamin Netanyahu and GOP operative, told the committee how Trump aide Rick Gates had inquired about using "Israeli technology" to collect dirt on opponent Hillary Clinton at a March 2016 meeting, explaining to the senators what would be so attractive about Israeli companies, specifically:
"These guys came out of the military intelligence army unit, and it's like coming out with a triple Ph.D. from MIT. The amount of knowledge these guys have in terms of cybersecurity, cyber-intelligence [is] just so beyond what you could get [with] a normal education that it's just unique there are hundreds and hundreds of Israeli start-up companies that the founders are guys who came out of this unit."
The unit Birnbaum is referring to is the IDF's Unit 8200, where these "hundreds and hundreds" of tech startups are born right in the bowels of the Israeli national security state and propagate throughout the world and the United States, in particular.
Described as " private Mossads " for hire, many of the Israeli hacking and surveillance firms that moved behind the scenes, brokering meetings between Trump's people and Russian oligarchs like Oleg Deripaska during the height of the so-called Russian "collusion," were working through a "key middle man" with close ties to then-Trump National Security Adviser, Michael Flynn, who was himself also working in an advisory capacity with the "consortium of cyber-spy companies run by former Israeli intelligence officers" known as the NSO Group, that is comprised of several of the Israeli startups summoned before the committee for voluntary, closed-door testimony.
While the American public was fed one Russophobic scandal after another, and Robert Mueller held court in the press for two years straight, no one -- especially Mueller -- was paying attention to this perverse network of Israeli surveillance companies who operated the virtual scaffold upon which the Russiagate narrative was being constructed and whose fellow Unit 8200 graduates in other subsectors of the cybersecurity industry are deeply ensconced in highly questionable activities surrounding the coming 2020 election.THE NSO GROUP
The NSO Group gained notoriety when it was identified as the developer of Pegasus, the iPhone spyware that was found installed on slain Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi's phone in the days leading up to his gruesome death. NSO's cell phone tracking technology has been associated with other ghastly events, such as the scandal involving Pegasus in Mexico, where a team of international investigators looking into the disappearance of 43 students in Ayotzinapa was targeted by the spyware, as well as Mexican journalists and their families.
One of the NSO companies questioned by the Senate committee in relation to Russian interference, Psy-Group, is currently under investigation in California, where it was caught red-handed actually trying to rig a local election for a paying customer. Another, Circles, was founded by a former Israeli intelligence officer and is "known for covertly intercepting phone calls, text messages, and tracking locations of unaware citizens," according to a report by Forensic News .
In 2018, Haaretz published an expose on the company disclosing the extent to which Circles and the Israeli espionage industry is helping "world dictators hunt dissidents and gays," among other nefarious opportunities available in the "global commerce" of surveillance technologies.
An NSO rep peddles software services at annual European Police Congress in Berlin, April 28, 2020. Hannibal Hanschke | Reuters
The middle man the Senate investigation identified is Walter Soriano; singled out for his association with several Russian oligarchs like Oleg Deripaska and Dmitry Rybolovlev, who bought Trump's West Palm Beach mansion in 2008. The Senate report accuses Soriano and Israeli cybersecurity companies of coordinating "between the Trump Campaign and Russia," but fails to pursue the matter beyond that.
The UN resolution denouncing Israeli settlements would pass on December 23, 2016, after four temporary Security Council members, Malaysia, New Zealand, Senegal, and Venezuela reportedly took matters into their own hands and moved the vote forward. UNSCR 2334 became official as a result of a historic breach of established pro-Israel policy by the United States, which abstained from the vote. Widely reported as Obama's " parting shot " to Netanyahu and the incoming administration, the passing of the resolution went against Obama's own record of using U.S.' veto power to banish similar proposals .
President-elect Donald Trump would take office in a matter of weeks and the Mueller investigation kicked off the barrage of Russophobic content peddled over the digital airwaves night after night. Stories like Maria Butina's were plastered all over the media to buttress the Russiagate narrative.THE LEGEND OF MARIA BUTINA
Butina's former lover, Paul Erickson joked about being a CIA asset and had built a phony reputation as a man of staunch moral Christian values. Erickson worked for several Republican campaigns dating back to the late '80s, including a stint as national policy director for Pat Buchanan's '92 White House run. He first achieved international notoriety as Mobutu Sese Seko's lawyer, reportedly accepting a $30,000 lobbying contract to obtain a U.S. visa for the African despot, which was ultimately denied.
It was Erickson's long-standing ties to the NRA and the organization's former president David Keene, which set the stage for the Maria Butina story as a Russian infiltrator looking for " access to U.S. political organizations ." Erickson had worked with Keene as a registered foreign agent since the 1990s and formed part of the NRA's efforts to forge closer ties to Israel since at least 2011.
Prosecutors would paint Butina as a seductress, ensnaring Erickson in a "duplicitous relationship," but it was the cunning GOP operative who first spotted Butina during a 2013 trip to Moscow with Keene. Butina and Erickson would meet again in Israel one year later where they would begin their 'love affair' during which he would become "integral to Butina's activities," assisting the Russian gun enthusiast "in developing relationships with individuals and organizations involved in U.S. politics," according to the Senate Intelligence Committee.
Maria Butina poses for a photo at a shooting range in Moscow, April 22, 2012. Pavel Ptitsin | AP
A con-artist by most accounts, Erickson is described by a Republican legislator as "the single biggest phony I've ever met in South Dakota politics." South Dakota was where Yale-educated Erickson came up in the political arena and where he's left a long trail of burned business associates and friends. In 2019, Erickson pled guilty to wire fraud and money laundering , admitting he had bilked 78 people of $2.3 Million over 22 years and was sentenced this past July to seven years in federal prison.
The NRA has been forging ties to the Israeli security state for years now. In 2013, Trump's former National Security Adviser, John Bolton, joined a delegation of 30 in Jerusalem for a 10-day tour of Israel's police institutions. The honorary NRA member stated on that occasion, that Israel could "serve as a model for American security." The legend of Maria Butina, itself, was seeded in Israel that same year when an "obscure" Israeli gun-rights group posted on Facebook that she had announced to have signed a cooperation agreement with the NRA and "neighboring countries" to promote gun rights at a meeting with its members.
Butina would meet with Erickson and Keene two weeks later in Moscow, along with Alexander Torshin, former deputy governor of Russia's central bank and lifetime NRA member. Torshin, who has been targeted by U.S. sanctions, traveled with Butina to the United States to "discuss U.S.-Russian economic relations" in April 2015. The pair met with several senior American officials, like Federal Reserve vice chairman and former Israel central bank chief, Stanley Fischer; the Treasury undersecretary for international affairs, Nathan Sheets and others in a meeting " moderated " by AIG CEO Maurice "Hank" Greenberg. The details of the high-level meeting, two months before Donald Trump made his announcement to run for president, have never been made public.
Feature photo | Chairman Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., speaks during a Senate Judiciary Committee business meeting to consider authorization for subpoenas relating to the Crossfire Hurricane investigation, the code name for the counterintelligence investigation undertaken by the FBI in 2016 and 2017 into links between Trump and Russian officials, June 11, 2020. Carolyn Kaster | AP
Raul Diego is a MintPress News Staff Writer, independent photojournalist, researcher, writer and documentary filmmaker.
Billo • 9 days ago ,Hasin Ascomstein • 9 days ago ,
I always said it was Israeli influence not Russian. How obvious can it get. But we have Trump constantly kissing the Israeli ass while being kicked in the teeth and Congress bending over backwards pedaling lies about Russia for Israeli benefit.
Is there anyone on our side in DC?Ann Hagan • 8 days ago ,
Ok, so we have the israelis, synonymous with deep state, responsible for wtc '93, wtc 9/11, the arab spring, the afghan conflict, the iraq conflict, problems with Iran, training antifa/blm, equipping and training the messican cartels, the farc, and tupac amaru. Being the worlds controlling supplier of MDMA. As well as giving U.S. technology to the chinese, and direct involvement with the release of covid 19. And hiring osama bin laden to build a highway in the sudan, then embezzling $800 million from bin ladens project, and blaming it on the U.S. It's time for the world to put their collective heads back into where the sun does shine.
This is so convoluted and Byzantine and no one is offering documentation, just allegations.
Sep 24, 2020 | www.rt.com
A satirical video using "deepfake" technology to show US President Donald Trump as coming to work for RT after the November election was taken very seriously by 'Russiagate' peddlers at the Daily Beast and the Lincoln Project.
Sep 24, 2020 | thesaker.is
First, he was a man of immense kindness and humility . Second, he was a man of total intellectual honesty . I can't say that Cohen and I had the same ideas or the same reading of history, though in many cases we did, but here is what I found so beautiful in this man: unlike most of his contemporaries, Cohen was not an ideologue , he did not expect everybody to agree with him, and he himself did not vet people for ideological purity before offering them his friendship.
Even though it is impossible to squeeze a man of such immense intellect and honesty into any one single ideological category, I would say that Stephen Cohen was a REAL liberal , in the original, and noble, meaning of this word.
I also have to mention Stephen Cohen's immense courage . Yes, I know, Cohen was not deported to GITMO for his ideas, he was not tortured in a CIA secret prison, and he was not rendered to some Third Word country to be tortured there on behalf of the USA. Stephen Cohen had a different kind of courage: the courage to remain true to himself and his ideals even when the world literally covered him in slanderous accusations, the courage to NOT follow his fellow liberals when they turned PSEUDO-liberals and betrayed everything true liberalism stands for. Professor Cohen also completely rejected any forms of tribalism or nationalism, which often made him the target of vicious hatred and slander, especially from his fellow US Jews (he was accused of being, what else, a Putin agent).
Cohen had the courage to take on the entire ruling elites of this country and their messianic supremacist ideology by himself, almost completely alone.
Last, but most certainly not least, Stephen Cohen was a true peacemaker , in the sense of the words of the Holy Gospel I quoted above. He opposed the warmongering nutcases during the Cold War, and he opposed them again when they replaced their rabid hatred of the Soviet Union with an even more rabid hatred of everything Russian.
I won't claim here that I always agreed with Cohen's ideas or his reading of history, and I am quite sure that he would not agree with much of what I wrote. But one thing Cohen and I definitely did agree on: the absolute, number one, priority of not allowing a war to happen between the USA and Russia. It would not be an exaggeration to say that Stephen Cohen dedicated his entire life towards this goal.
... ... ...
Sep 24, 2020 | www.thenation.com
first "met" Steve through his 1977 essay "Bolshevism and Stalinism." His cogent, persuasive, revisionist argument that there are always alternatives in history and politics deeply influenced me. And his seminal biography, Bukharin and the Bolshevik Revolution , challenging prevailing interpretations of Soviet history, was to me, and many, a model of how biography should be written: engaged and sympathetically critical.
At the time, I was too accepting of conventional wisdom. Steve's work -- and soon, Steve himself -- challenged me to be critical-minded, to seek alternatives to the status quo, to stay true to my beliefs (even if they weren't popular), and to ask unpopular questions of even the most powerful. These are values I carry with me to this day as editorial director of The Nation , which Steve introduced me to (and its editor, Victor Navasky) and for which he wrote a column ("Sovieticus") from 1982 to 1987, and many articles and essays beginning in 1979. His last book, War with Russia? was a collection of dispatches (almost all posted at thenation.com ) distilled from Steve's weekly radio broadcasts -- beginning in 2014–on The John Batchelor Show .
T he experiences we shared in Moscow beginning in 1980 are in many ways my life's most meaningful. Steve introduced me to realms of politics, history, and life I might never have experienced: to Bukharin's widow, the extraordinary Anna Mikhailovna Larina, matriarch of his second family, and to his eclectic and fascinating circle of friends -- survivors of the Gulag, (whom he later wrote about in The Victims Return ) dissidents, and freethinkers -- both outside and inside officialdom.
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From 1985 to 1991, when we lived frequently in Moscow, we shared the intellectual and political excitement, the hopes and the great achievements of those perestroika years. We later developed a close friendship with Mikhail Gorbachev, a man we both deeply admired as an individual and as a political leader who used his power so courageously to change his country and the world. Gorbachev also changed our lives in several ways.
Our marriage coincided with perestroika . In fact, Steve spent the very first day after our wedding, our so-called honeymoon, at the United Nations with Gorbachev and the news anchor Dan Rather (Steve was consulting for CBS News at the time). Then, on our first anniversary, in 1989, we were with President Bush (the first) and Gorbachev on Malta when they declared the end of the Cold War. And we think of our daughter, Nika, now 29 years old, as a perestroika baby because she was conceived in Russia during the Gorbachev years, made her first visit to Moscow in July 1991 and since then has been back some 40 times. In a moving moment, a year after Raisa Maksimovna died, Gorbachev remarked to Steve that our marriage and partnership reminded him of his with Raisa because we too seemed inseparable.
Steve has often regretted that many of the Russian friends he made after 1985 did not know about his earlier Moscow life. He first visited the Soviet Union in 1959. But it was those pre- perestroika years, 1975 to 1982, that gave Steve what he once told me was his "real education. Not only in Russian society but in Russian politics, because I began to understand the connection between trends in society, trends in the dissident movement, and trends in the nomenklatura." They were "utterly formative years for me."
They also informed his writings, especially his pathbreaking book Rethinking the Soviet Experience , which was published at the very time Gorbachev came to power. "There was a lot of tragedy," Steve used to say, "but also a lot of humor and warmth when people had little more that personal friendships and ideas to keep them company." From 1980, when I first traveled to Moscow with Steve, to 1982 when neither of us could get a visa (until 1985 when Gorbachev became leader), we lived in that Russia, spending many nights in friends' apartments and kitchens drinking into the night, and listening to uncensored, often pessimistic, thinking about the present and future of Russia.
I later became Steve's collaborator in smuggling samizdat manuscripts out of Russia to the West, and bringing samizdat books back to Russia and distributing them. By the time I joined him, Steve had managed to send dozens of such books to Moscow, and satisfying friends with a selection ranging from Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn, Varlam Shalamov, George Orwell, and Robert Conquest to the Kama Sutra and, of course, the samizdat version of Steve's own book on Bukharin. I learned from Steve that one had to keep forbidden documents and manuscripts on one's person at all times, knowing that the KGB frequently searched apartments and hotel rooms. At a certain point, Steve's shoulder bag became so heavy that he developed a hernia on his right side. After surgery, he started carrying his bag on his left side, but developed a second hernia there, as well. He liked to say that the worst the KGB ever did to him was to cause him two hernias!
In fact, it was samizdat manuscripts that first brought us together. In 1978, Steve heard that I had a diplomatic passport, which would have exempted me from a customs search, and was about to travel to Moscow. (At the time my father was the United States representative to the United Nations in Geneva.) Through a mutual friend, Steve asked if I would bring out samizdat documents being held for him in Moscow. I would have been happy to do so, but Steve had been misinformed. I didn't have a diplomatic passport.
S teve could sometimes seem like a tough guy, but those who won his trust knew he was a person of great generosity, loyalty, and kindness. He was known in our New York City neighborhood on the Upper West Side as an impresario/organizer and longtime supporter of basketball tournaments for local, often poor, kids. In the United States and Russia, Steve mentored and supported young scholars. In the last decade, he set up fellowships for young scholars of Russian history at the several universities where he'd he studied and taught: Indiana University, Princeton, New York University, and Columbia. He lent his support to the establishment of Moscow's State Museum of the History of the Gulag -- and to its young director and team.
Life with Steve was never boring. He was supremely independent, the true radical in our family, unfailingly going to the root of the problem. He spoke his mind. He had a CD with a dozen variations of "My Way" -- from Billy Bragg to Frank Sinatra. And as The Chronicle of Higher Education subtitled its 2017 profile of Steve, he "was the most controversial Russia expert in America."SUPPORT PROGRESSIVE JOURNALISM
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Through all our years together, Steve was my backbone, fortifying me for the battles Nation editors must wage (often with their own writers, sometimes including Steve!), and giving me the personal and political courage to do the right thing. But never more so than when we entered what might be called the "Russiagate era."
While Steve liked to say it's healthy to rethink, to have more questions than answers, there was a wise consistency to his political analysis. For example, as is clear from his many articles in The Nation in these last decades, he unwaveringly opposed American Cold War thinking both during the Cold War and since the end of the Soviet Union. He was consistent in his refusal to sermonize, lecture, or moralize about what Russia should do. He preferred to listen rather than preach, to analyze rather than demonize.
This stance was no recipe for popularity, which Steve professed to care little about. He was courageous and fearless in continuing to question the increasingly rigid orthodoxies about the Soviet Union and Russia. But in the last months, such criticism did take its toll on him. Along with others who sought to avert a new and more dangerous Cold War, Steve despaired that the public debate so desperately needed had become increasingly impossible in mainstream politics or media. Until his death he'd been working on a short article about what he saw as the "criminalization of détente." The organization he established, the American Committee on East-West Accord, tried mightily to argue for a more sane US policy toward Russia.
He fared better than I often did confronting the controversies surrounding him since 2014, in reaction to his views on Ukraine, Putin, election interference, and more. Positions he took often elicited slurs and scurrilous attacks. How many times could he be labeled "Putin's puppet"? "Putin's No.1 American apologist"? Endlessly, it seemed. But Steve chose not to respond directly to the attacks, believing -- as he told me many times when I urged him to respond -- that they offered no truly substantive criticism of his arguments, but were merely ad hominem attacks. What he did write about -- he was increasingly concerned about the fate of a younger generation of scholars -- was the danger of smearing those who thought differently about US policy toward Russia, thereby silencing skeptics and contributing to the absence of a needed debate in our politics, media, and academy.
M ikhail Gorbachev often told Steve how deeply influenced he was by his writings, especially his biography of Bukharin. Steve first met Gorbachev in 1987 at the Soviet Embassy in Washington. It was a reception for America's "progressive intelligentsia" -- which Steve found funny, because he considered himself a maverick and didn't like labels. But he was there that day, and within a few minutes a Kremlin aide told Steve that the general secretary wanted to talk to him. Minutes later, Mikhail Sergeevich approached and asked Steve, assuming the author of Bukharin and the Bolshevik Revolution must be eminent and of a "serious" age: " Deistvitelno [really] -- you wrote the book, or was it your father?"
Steve finally achieved that "serious" age Gorbachev spoke of! But his heart, spirit and mind remained youthful till the very end. Maybe it's because of his love of Jerry Lee Lewis's rock and roll, or New Orleans blues or Kentucky bluegrass, or his passion for basketball (shared with our daughter Nika and his 16-year-old grandson, Lucas), or his quest for a good anecdote (his annual anecdote lectures at Princeton and later NYU drew large crowds). Maybe it's because we continued our walks in nearby Riverside Park for as long as was possible -- walks full of loving and spirited argument and talk. Perhaps it's because, while Steve was a very serious person, he didn't take himself seriously.
O n Saturday, Mikhail Gorbachev sent these words about Steve:
Please accept my sincere condolences on Steve's passing. He was one of the closest people to me in his views and understanding of the enormous events that occurred in the late 1980s in Russia and changed the world.
Steve was a brilliant historian and a man of democratic convictions. He loved Russia, the Russian intelligentsia, and believed in our country's future.
I always considered Steve and you my true friends. During perestroika and all the subsequent years, I felt your understanding and unwavering support. I thank you both.
Dear Katrina, I feel deep sympathy for your grief and I mourn together with you and Nika.
Blessed memory for Steve.
I embrace you,
F or 40 years, Steve was my partner, companion, co-conspirator, best friend, fellow traveler, mentor, husband (for 32 years), co-author. I will be forever grateful to him for introducing me to The Nation , to Russia, for a life that has been full of shared adventure, friendship and passion, and for our beloved daughter, Nika. MOST POPULAR1
FEDERAL AGENCIES TAPPED PROTESTERS' PHONES IN PORTLAND2
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FASCISM IS THE CORE OF TRUMP'S MESSAGE
Katrina vanden Heuvel TWITTER Katrina vanden Heuvel is editorial director and publisher of The Nation , America's leading source of progressive politics and culture. She served as editor of the magazine from 1995 to 2019.
Herbert Weiner says:September 22, 2020 at 11:53 pmErwin Borda says: September 22, 2020 at 10:44 pm
My condolences for the passing of Stephen who fought the post Cold War policies against Russia with a balanced analysis--so contradictory to the intellectuals who gloat in our victory and are unrealistic to the "threat" posed by Russia which desperately needs peace and friendship with the West and, especially, us. He has shown that you can criticism and condemn Stalinism while also condemning our anti-Soviet policies. He walked that tightrope which I applaud. May his memory be a blessing.Valera Bochkarev says: September 22, 2020 at 8:56 am
Dear Katrina, at this time of America's political confusion, pain and intellectual despair, the lost of Steve is really big. He has been a source of inspiration to many, and the true defender of Russia in the middle of political adversity. Steve being an intellectual giant always exposed his ideas in a humble and honest way. What a lost for America and for the world!
Rest in Peace Steve! And for you Katrina and Nika my most sincere condolences!
God Bless you all!Pierre Guerlain says: September 22, 2020 at 2:43 am
Boots, Applebaums, Kristols and Joffes of this world will come and go as specks of dirt clogging up our civilization while never measuring up to courageous moral and intellectual giants like Professor Cohen. His intellect, insight and humility will always be a shining beacon for those that have high hopes for humanity. Rest in peace, Steve Cohen. You've led a righteous and honorable life, Sir.Ann Wright says: September 21, 2020 at 7:53 pm
I started reading Steve's articles in connection with the conspiracy theory that Russiagate is and then I watched many videos of him in interviews. I came to admire such a courageous man who was slandered by people who knew nothing, nothing about Russia, the country Steve knew so well but also nothing about geopolitics, international relations and the tricks of intel services. Always competent and with a gift for clear exposition, Steve warned about what is one of the gravest dangers: war with Russia. I too admired Gorbachev and saw how he was hoodwinked by people who unknowingly prepared Putin's rise. A great courageous thinker is gone and we miss him.John Stewart says: September 21, 2020 at 5:12 pm
I admired Steve's perspective from 1992 when I was in the second group that wasIn the US Embassy in Tashkent, Uzbekistan and two years later with the Us Embassy in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan for two years from 1994-1996. I've been back to Russia twice in the past three years and I agree totally with His view of the stupidity of another Cold War!!!John Connolly says: September 21, 2020 at 3:10 pm
Katrina, thank you so much for sharing your thoughts. I took two courses with Professor Cohen at Princeton in 1973 and 1974, and he was without question the best lecturer I had in seven years of higher education. He became my intellectual mentor, although I was too shy to ever really talk with him. I graduated in Politics and Russian Studies in 1977, and he was an inspiration. I am especially saddened by his death because I have been thinking of picking up Russian studies soon when I retire and I wanted his advice on where I should do a Masters degree, with whom, and what topics needed someone to pick up. He was a great man, and a voice of sense about Russia. He will be greatly missed.
Dear Katrina: Thank You for this personal sharing of Your life with Stephen Cohen; and sincere condolences to You, Nika and Lucas.
I really appreciate Your clarity and candor about the unique position Steve occupied in the academic, intellectual and political firmament ... never completely clear to me until Your explication. Steve regularly engaged and sometimes enraged me with some of his positions -- some of them seeming to me ill-considered defenses of cloddish Stalinist bureaucrats or malevolent Russian authoritarians ... but I read everything he wrote in 'The Nation' and anywhere else I came across him. As a longtime Trotskyist/ Socialist I could find plenty to argue about with Brother Cohen, but also found great appreciation for the fact that almost no one else was currently thinking and writing about Russia or the Soviet experience with the rigor, insight, depth of experience and skill that Stephen owned and shared with us all. It goes without saying he will be missed by You his dearest and closest ones; but he will be sorely missed too by those of us in Your extended 'Nation' Family, and the Progressive millions he so widely taught and influenced to 'think different'.
snake , Sep 22 2020 10:19 utc | 36
Sep 23, 2020 | www.moonofalabama.org
snake , Sep 22 2020 0:59 utc | 22 can we not invent a method that can counter this tactic of using propaganda to control the narrative?
1) Hack them. Release their planning documents, emails, phone calls, etc. showing how the scam was set up.
2) Waste of time. They control the media. The Internet may have lots of influence, but it still does not set "consensus reality" - that remains with the MSM. The MSM issues one coordinated narrative. The Internet is all over the place. Without one coordinated narrative, you can't set "reality".
3) In addition, those who issue the narrative and control the MSM have the power. People want to believe those in power, due to cognitive dissonance - otherwise they'd have to accept that everyone ruling their lives is a corrupt liar. The electorate may *say* they understand that their rulers are corrupt - but they can't act* on that realization without compromising their own internal belief systems. So again, waste of time to try.
time2wakeupnow , Sep 21 2020 23:36 utc | 20Well....as always, and especially if it involves anything even remotely relating to 'Russia', or Iran, or whatever adversarial operational target of the day might be -- one can reliably count on our very own "Izvestia on the Hudson" to faithfully execute their officially sanctioned nation security state propaganda mission by dutifully steno-graphing as much dis/mis-information as their NSA/CIA/Pentagon handlers request (require) from them.
Petri Krohn , Sep 21 2020 22:50 utc | 18A former editor and correspondent of the The New York Times , Michael Cieply describes how the newspaper works:ak74 , Sep 22 2020 0:14 utc | 22Stunned By Trump, The New York Times Finds Time For Some Soul-Searching
It was a shock on arriving at the New York Times in 2004, as the paper's movie editor, to realize that its editorial dynamic was essentially the reverse. By and large, talented reporters scrambled to match stories with what internally was often called "the narrative." We were occasionally asked to map a narrative for our various beats a year in advance, square the plan with editors, then generate stories that fit the pre-designated line.
Reality usually had a way of intervening. But I knew one senior reporter who would play solitaire on his computer in the mornings, waiting for his editors to come through with marching orders. Once, in the Los Angeles bureau, I listened to a visiting National staff reporter tell a contact, more or less: "My editor needs someone to say such-and-such, could you say that?"
The bigger shock came on being told, at least twice, by Times editors who were describing the paper's daily Page One meeting: "We set the agenda for the country in that room.The blogger Caitlin Johnstone accurately states that these most of these mainstream corporate journalists are really *narrative managers* in that their primary role is to peddle the official narrative of the US corporate/political establishment for any given topic.Richard Steven Heck , Sep 22 2020 4:01 utc | 28
I would add that the managing editors of these "journalists"/narrative managers would be more honestly described as "handlers," to use the parlance of spooks.
In fact, it would be apt to described venerable institution of journalism itself as an intelligence operation.
THE CIA AND THE MEDIA
@snake | Sep 22 2020 0:59 utc | 22 can we not invent a method that can counter this tactic of using propaganda to control the narrative?
1) Hack them. Release their planning documents, emails, phone calls, etc. showing how the scam was set up.
2) Waste of time. They control the media. The Internet may have lots of influence, but it still does not set "consensus reality" - that remains with the MSM. The MSM issues one coordinated narrative. The Internet is all over the place. Without one coordinated narrative, you can't set "reality".
3) In addition, those who issue the narrative and control the MSM have the power. People want to believe those in power, due to cognitive dissonance - otherwise they'd have to accept that everyone ruling their lives is a corrupt liar. The electorate may *say* they understand that their rulers are corrupt - but they can't act* on that realization without compromising their own internal belief systems. So again, waste of time to try.
Sep 23, 2020 | www.moonofalabama.org
Steverino , Aug 9 2020 13:35 utc | 53
I'll tell you what's really going on here.
Those sneaky Russians are well aware Biden is doing a good enough job of subverting his own campaign.
They know he, like his opponent, offers no relief from the constant militarism and forever wars that the American public is fed up with.
They know he, like his opponent, is corrupt and represents corporate interests and that the American public sees him as out of touch and incapable of offering anything in terms of substantive change.
They know that so long as Biden doesn't offer any kind of viable alternative to the status quo his candidacy is going to be weak and ineffectual and that there isn't much of anything they could do that could possibly enhance that effect.
So, they're content to sit back and let nature take its course. In other words, they realize the best way to interfere in the American elections... is by NOT interfering with them.
And how could the Americans possibly counter such a strategy? The deviousness is off the charts. Damn those Russians!
Sep 22, 2020 | gilbertdoctorow.com
On Friday, 18 September, professor Steve Cohen passed away in New York City and we, the "dissident" community of Americans standing for peace with Russia – and for peace with the world at large – lost a towering intellectual and skillful defender of our cause who enjoyed an audience of millions by his weekly broadcasts on the John Batchelor Show, WABC Radio.
A year ago, I reviewed his latest book, War With Russia? which drew upon the material of those programs and took this scholar turned journalist into a new and highly accessible genre of oral readings in print. The narrative style may have been more relaxed, with simplified syntax, but the reasoning remained razor sharp. I urge those who are today paying tribute to Steve, to buy and read the book, which is his best legacy.
From start to finish, Stephen F. Cohen was among America's best historians of his generation, putting aside the specific subject matter that he treated: Nikolai Bukharin, his dissertation topic and the material of his first and best known book; or, to put it more broadly, the history of Russia (USSR) in the 20 th century. He was one of the very rare cases of an historian deeply attentive to historiography, to causality and to logic. I understood this when I read a book of his from the mid-1980s in which he explained why Russian (Soviet) history was no longer attracting young students of quality: because there were no unanswered questions, because we smugly assumed that we knew about that country all that there was to know. That was when our expert community told us with one voice that the USSR was entrapped in totalitarianism without any prospect for the overthrow of its oppressive regime.
But my recollections of Steve also have a personal dimension going back six years or so when a casual email correspondence between us flowered into a joint project that became the launch of the American Committee for East West Accord (ACEWA). This was a revival of a pro-détente association of academics and business people that existed from the mid-1970s to the early 1990s, when, following the collapse of the Soviet Union and the removal of the Communist Party from power, the future of Russia in the family of nations we call the 'international community' seemed assured and there appeared to be no further need for such an association as ACEWA.
I hasten to add that in the original ACEWA Steve and I were two ships that passed in the night. With his base in Princeton, he was a protégé of the dean of diplomats then in residence there, George Kennan, who was the leading light on the academic side of the ACEWA. I was on the business side of the association, which was led by Don Kendall, chairman of Pepsico and also for much of the 1970s chairman of the US-USSR Trade and Economic Council of which I was also a member. I published pro-détente articles in their newsletter and published a lengthy piece on cooperation with the Soviet Union in agricultural and food processing domains, my specialty at that time, in their collection of essays by leaders in the U.S. business community entitled Common Sense in U.S.-Soviet Trade .
The academic contingent had, as one might assume, a 'progressive' coloration, while the business contingent had a Nixon Republican coloration. Indeed, in the mid-1980s these two sides split in their approach to the growing peace movement in the U.S. that was fed by opposition in the 'thinking community' on university campuses to Ronald Reagan's Star Wars agenda. Kendall shut the door at ACEWA to rabble rousing and the association did not rise to the occasion, so that its disbanding in the early '90s went unnoticed.
In the re-incorporated American Committee, I helped out by assuming the formal obligations of Treasurer and Secretary, and also became the group's European Coordinator from my base in Brussels. At this point my communications with Steve were almost daily and emotionally quite intense. This was a time when America's expert community on Russian affairs once again felt certain that it knew everything there was to know about the country, and most particularly about the nefarious "Putin regime." But whereas in the 1970s and 1980s, polite debate about the USSR/Russia was entirely possible both behind closed doors and in public space, from the start of the Information Wars against Russia during the George W. Bush administration following Putin's speech at the Munich Security Conference in February 2007, no voice questioning the official propaganda line in America was tolerated. Steve Cohen, who in the 1990s had been a welcome guest on U.S. national television and a widely cited expert in print media suddenly found himself blacklisted and subjected to the worst of McCarthyite style, ad hominem attacks.
From my correspondence and several meetings with Steve at this time both in his New York apartment and here in Brussels, when he and Katrina van der Heuvel came to participate in a Round Table dedicated to relations with Russia at the Brussels Press Club that I arranged, I knew that Steve was deeply hurt by these vitriolic attacks. He was at the time waging a difficult campaign to establish a fellowship in support of graduate studies in Russian affairs. It was touch and go, because of vicious opposition from some stalwarts of the profession to any fellowship that bore Steve's name. Allow me to put the 'i' on this dispute: the opposition to Steve was led by experts in the Ukrainian and other minority peoples sub-categories of the profession who were militantly opposed not just to him personally but to any purely objective, not to mention sympathetic treatment of Russian leadership in the territorial expanse of Eurasia. In the end, Steve and Katrina prevailed. The fellowships exist and, hopefully, will provide sustenance to future studies when American attitudes towards Russia become less politicized.
At all times and on all occasions, Steve Cohen was a voice of reason above all. The problem of our age is that we are now not only living in a post-factual world, but in a post-logic world. The public reads day after day the most outrageous and illogical assertions about alleged Russian misdeeds posted by our most respected mainstream media including The New York Times and The Washington Post . Almost no one dares to raise a hand and suggest that this reporting is propaganda and that the public is being brainwashed. Steve did exactly that in War With Russia? in a brilliant and restrained text.
Regrettably today we have no peace movement to speak of. Youth and our 'progressive' elites are totally concerned over the fate of humanity in 30 or 40 years' time as a consequence of Global Warming and rising seas. That is the essence of the Green Movement. Almost no one outside our 'dissident' community is concerned about the possibility of Armageddon in say two years' time due to miscalculations and bad luck in our pursuing economic, informational and military confrontation with Russia and China.
I fear it will take only some force majeure development such as we had in 1962 during the Cuban Missile Crisis to awaken the broad public to the risks to our very survival that we are incurring by ignoring the issues that Stephen F. Cohen, professor emeritus of Princeton and New York University was bringing to the airwaves week after week on his radio program.
In terms of action, the new ACEWA was even less effective than its predecessor, which had avoided linking up with the peace movement of the 1980s and sought to exert influence on policy through armchair talks with Senators and other statesmen in Washington behind closed doors of (essentially) men's clubs.
However, the importance of the new ACEWA, and the national importance of Stephen Cohen lay elsewhere.
This question of appraising Stephen Cohen's national importance is all the more timely given that on the day of his death, 18 September, the nation also lost Supreme Justice Ruth Ginsburg, about whose national importance no Americans, whether her fans or her opponents, had any doubt.
My point in this discussion is that in the last decade of his life Stephen Cohen became one of the nation's most fearless and persistent defenders of the right to Free Speech. It was not a role that he sought. It was thrust upon him by the expert community of international affairs, including the Council on Foreign Relations, from which he reluctantly resigned over this matter.
It was forced upon him by The New York Times, The Washington Post and other major media who pilloried him or blacklisted him over his unorthodox, unsanctioned, nonconformist views on the "Putin regime." It was forced upon him by university colleagues who sought to deny his right to establish graduate school fellowships in Russian affairs bearing his name and that of his mentor at Indiana University, Professor Tucker.
In the face of vicious personal attacks from these McCarthyite forces, in the face of hate mail and even threats to his life, Steve decided to set up The American Committee and to recruit to its governing board famous, patriotic Americans and the descendants of the most revered families in the country. In this he succeeded, and it is to his credit that a moral counter force to the stampeding bulls of repression was erected and has survived to this day.
©Gilbert Doctorow, 2020
[If you found value in this article, you should be interested to read my latest collection of essays entitled A Belgian Perspective on International Affairs, published in November 2019 and available in e-book, paperback and hardbound formats from amazon, barnes & noble, bol.com, fnac, Waterstones and other online retailers. Use the "View Inside" tab on the book's webpages to browse.]
Sep 22, 2020 | www.youtube.com
TheInstallations , 2 years agoYevgeny Goncharov , 2 years ago
McFaul is definitely not an academic, but much more a mediocre high civil servant. He is also very post modern in his approach. He is here to sell his book, not to argue ideas. He is incapable of building a rhetorical argument, and of having any political vision or strong analytical intelligence.
He is definitely not at the same level as Stephen F.Cohen. This is very alarming for the US, that people like him could have any power decision on Foreign Policy, and could explain the slow decline of the USA.
Confronted to people like Putin who is obviously an Old fashion politician like de Gaulles or Churchill, the Cold War can only lead us to catastrophe.The Maverick Historian , 2 years ago
Great facts from Prof. Cohen. Faulty logic from McFaul ("you cannot use those variables..."). McFaul will not get far in understanding Russia with this twisted approach, ie pretending like nothing (NATO, missile treaty, regime changes) happens.Yevgeny Goncharov , 2 years ago
Very informative debate! I think McFaul has only contributed to the new cold war with the treaties he helped write and the ill-informed advice he provided to the neoconservative Obama administration. Mr. Stephen Cohen is brilliant and I only wish he was more influential in shaping today's foreign policy. Though thankfully, McFaul is also no longer influential in shaping U.S. foreign policy.Aleksandar Mali , 1 year ago
Very low from McFaul. Bringing personal attacks on him from social media as "facts" and "arguments" ("McFaul is a pedophile") . This not a level of academic argument from McFaul. He is no match to Cohen.Peace and Love , 2 years ago
It's so easy to understand! Russia is doing same thing usa will do when china starts to open military bases in latin America. Its not hard to imagine and in decade or to you will not have to imagine you will have that reality. Many Latin America countries will be interconnected with china with economic and military agreements than one day they will try to brig Mexico in China's sphere of influence if they refuse china can let's say "help" opposition to come in power and sign everything China wants.
I would like to see what American "experts" will say. How many of them will think that Mexico as a sovereign natio have right to sign any agreement it wants maybe even Russia can open military base and bring nuclear weapons to border of USA. So what it's their democratic right, isn't it?Salam Ahmed , 10 months ago
McFaul is intellectually incoherent and disingenuous. Cohen wasted himSvendBosanvovski , 1 year ago (edited)
1:13:33 - 1:13:58 I swear by the all-powerful Albert Einistine that you are lying AND YOU KNOW IT. Russians said A BILLION times that U.S.A slowly but SURELY preparing for what they called "a calamitous war" by moving its lethal weapons nearer and nearer to the Russian territories.
We all know the truth... US economy heavily dependent on producing weapons and ammunition but the very very very main reason [for harassing Russia and the rest of world] is because the Rothschild family wants GLOBAL DOMINATION. SOLD FACT (ask ANY Russian intelligence officer about it and you will see what i mean).rd264 , 2 years ago
I have read Professor Cohen's last two works ("Soviet Fates and Lost Alternatives" and "War with Russia?") and found them very informative and persuasive, but seeing him here expanding upon his key arguments is even more rewarding.
He shouldn't have to be brave to hold to his position, given his reputation as a scholar, but regrettably he is made to appear out of step with the critical mass of opinion makers who see more value promoting conflict with Russia than working towards a sensible accommodation.Dmitriy A , 1 year ago
I'm not an "expert" from Stanford, but as I recall the USSR imploded and the US [CIA etc] was totally surprised -so called pundits and experts in the US did not see it coming, then the next thing we get is US mainstream media claimed victory in the cold war, just blanket assertions that US won the cold war because the US is virtuous and clean and good, and we did it by the clear superiority of US way of life or some such crap.
Charles Krauthammer, for example. Now so called media and historians try to convince us that Reagan lead disarmament, but as I recall he blocked it at most points, for example, it was Gorbachev not Reagan who was out front and did all the leading at Reykjavik, and Reagan threw away Gorbachev's historic offer to totally disarm on the grounds that Star Wars was a more important priority, on Richard Perle's advice.
Now we are seeing something similar under Trump in which the US is again uninterested in peace and far more interested in wars by proxies and drones and global hegemony and control running the 7 seas and space to boot.a 19 , 9 months ago
Michael Foley is a liar of course US was involved I was me in US Army force and my friends used to travel to Georgia way before 2008 and of course everybody knows 2008 Russia and Georgia went to war with each other but our soldiers US government soldiers were teaching Georgians fighting with the NATO forces and all orange resolutions and Geo like him involved in Overturning government was famous Victoria NulandLarry Galearis , 2 years ago
Mcfaul should have stayed in Montanablackjackpinoko , 1 year ago
Interesting debate and I hope Cohen is right, and is not the first of its kind. But still the FIRST EVER free debate about the New Cold War in the United States is (so far) still on Youtube. While listening to the two professors I found myself noting the difference in the presentation of facts from a career oriented politician/academic who is influenced by a forced narrative (McFaul) and one (Cohen) who is an academic historian who is in dissent and can speak freely (he is retired).
Keep in mind that Prof. McFaul has a career to worry about. It shows a LOT! Here we can see how political pressure can influence a debate. McFaul is still quite deserving of accolades for his courage to even say what he did in this debate.
And note how much free speech is missing in American society in the fact that this sort of thing is very difficult to achieve in a collapsed democracy. Note also that McFaul also stuck to "the Narrative" big lies like the so-called Crimea "annexation" when he would have known the truth of it....There are other examples. Americans are denied the fact that the public vote taken in Crimea was over 90% IN FAVOUR of joining Russia (again). This fact is simply too large for McFaul to be unaware of and yet most Americans are wallowing in this fake news. Or censored omissions. FWIW, GalearisSteven Bishop , 2 months ago
McFaul sounded like PompeoDavide Sinigoi , 1 year ago
The Monroe Doctrine. Has McFly read it?Alex P. , 9 months ago
Prof. McFaul is a partisan. He bases his opinion of detailed facts, so detailed that he misses the bigger picture. The bigger picture is that he claims to be a sovereigns, but only when it comes to the US sovereignty. How about Russia's sovereignty?
Or Ukraine's whose government has been toppled by a (among others) US sponsored coup? How about Syria sovereignty? He furthers the view that the US had a fair posture towards Russia, which is not. This is also demonstrated by his personal deep dislike of Putin, which is something that both a real statesman or a real scholar should not influence opinions and actions.
McFaul's perspective is also flawed by the conflation of his (and Obama's) wishes and reality: that is that they don't like Putin and think to deal with Russia as if Putin was not there, but he is. You deal with the reality, not with your wishes. Putin is legitimate and strong Russia's president, whether McFaul likes him or not. A real respect for sovereignty demands respect for the head of the state you deal with. You don't question his legitimacy, as well as they don't questioned Clinton's, Bush's, Obama or Trump legitimacy. His point of view is that everything goes on in the world should have the US sanction, otherwise is not good.
This is imperial hubris, this is arrogance. This flaws his opinion in so far everything is measured upon american likes and dislikes. THis is not statesmanship, this is not scholarship, this is partisanship. He is also intellectually dishonest because he confuses a debate on right and wrong, which should be based on certain assumptions, with a debate on party interests, which has nothing to do with right and wrong, and is based on different assumptions. Indeed he is the less fit person in a debate on responsibility for the New Cold War because he was involved in its development and acquisition.
Partisanship is admitted, but shouldn't be disguised as neutrality or given any relevance just because of knowledge of technical details he knows - much of them are, frankly, irrelevant. His points are weak and inconsistent with geopolitical and a realist view of the international relations, they are biased by universal-liberal ideology, they are US-centric, he forgets too many essential points about the whole story. For instance he talks about the missed chance for Russian democracy (here a debate about what democracy is: his assumption is that the US democracy is .... please, don't make me laugh), but he doesn't mention that Soviet people voted in referenda and overwhelmingly wanted the USSR to keep on existing, but he forgets this "detail".
He forgets how the so much beloved Elcin sent the tanks against the parliament, many people were killed, how he allowed the pillaging of Russian people and resources by criminal oligarchs (many of them happily hosted by the UK and presented as political dissidents), and how the Russian 1996 were HEAVILY rigged and meddled by the US in order to reconfirm Elcin as a president. He complains about Putin being appointed by Elcin out of nothing. Well I can't recall any American complaints at that time, maybe because they thought he could be an alcoholic puppet like Elcin and that was clearly something the US liked and supported. So what about Obama (fake) words about wishing a strong Russia?
Obama spoke derogatory words about Russia. The only American interests about Russia is that is a militarily and strategically weak provider of cheap natural resources and that is not in tne position of competing for anything. I will stop here, although I could write pages and pages about McFlaws .... ooops! McFaul's inconsistency both as a scholar and even more as a statesman's advisor, but the debate was among a great intellectual with a clear vision of the world, and a small professor taken with insignificant details and too much love for Obama and blind believe in liberal universal ideology.Bob Trajkoski , 1 year ago
Mc Faul is clearly not supposed to have been in the positions of power, where he was. Something is fundamentally wrong with America. I think there is a crisis of personnel. Where are all these incredibly smart, high IQ people Harvard, Princeton, and the Ivy Leagues are supposedly pumping out?Adam Rihak , 3 months ago
McFaul believes in his own propaganda, irrational person and dangerous at that
Prof. Cohen astonishing realpolitik ingenuity when asked "what the security interests of Ukraine and Georgia are" ( 1:16:21 ) unveils to me his understanding of politics as kind of imperialistic chess game where the US stands against the USSR (or RF for that matter). I have experienced the same feelings from his other debates (I remember one memorable at Munk Debates in 2015) - as if the historic fears, desires and dreams (of NATO or EU membership as the only effective shield against Russian military power) of so many ex-soviet countries means absolutely nothing - as if they were mere puppets of US "regime". As though the legitimate wishes of these sovereign countries means nothing at all. He is so surprised by that question he suddenly can't retrieve even the definition of what security interests of a country actually means - a rather strange quality in a historian. Ultimately he comes up with "they should make peace with their neighbors" - say this to countries that were along their history subjects of Soviet violent repression, military invasions, ethnic genocides and such. "I don't think Russian is a threat to them". Absolutely ridiculous.
Jean-Pierre Delorraine , 8 months ago (edited)
This Michael McFaul individual is such severe laughing-stock completely out of touch with reality. Stephen Cohen's version of the "new cold war" is much closer to reality and we should not forget the nefarious entities that pull the strings in D.C. U.S. covert involvement throughout eastern Europe and especially the Ukraine is more than evident. Putin and Russia in general is not stupid and see right through U.S. covert meddling on Russia's border. And those "peaceful demonstrators" in Syria that MacFaul dearly praises are mere agents of the CIA/Mossad complex. Where are they now?
Nikhilesh Surve , 4 months agoPink Question , 3 months ago
Monroe doctrine doesn't care about the democratic rights of countries in the western hemisphere to enter into any alliance or partnership with USA's rival. Also, there's still no evidence of Russian hacking which is basis of their religion of RUSSIA RUSSIA RUSSIA !Ser Korz , 2 years ago
Sure, since in Ukraine you guys didn't push money in mysterious organisations that would support the "democratic" narrative. I don't like NATO in my country and I see nato presence as an existential threat for Russia! Look back at the Cuba crisis it's exactly the SAME! You no good morally and ethically corrupt poor excuses of mouth pieces
Interesting how USA wants democracy for (all) others , but USA wants capitalist aristocracy for it self ( Jimmy Carter Tells Oprah America Is No Longer a Democracy, Now an Oligarchy https://mic.com/articles/125813/jimmy-carter-tells-oprah-america-is-no-longer-a-democracy-now-an-oligarchy#.AFxvdOCIa ).
Preben Soe , 9 months agoEamonn Wright555 , 1 year ago
Either that Faul person is delusional or he is outright lying - Did Turkey not get threatened with sanctions when they decided to trade with Russia on anti missile weapons.Paul Srochenski , 1 year ago
You know Obama is a straight faced liar . Furthermore , we genocided innocent Christians and Muslims in three countries and created a diaspora of migrants to Europe. So , we are supposed to believe that all those PhDs did not foresee that , most people think that it was your intentional outcome all along . So it goes now in Venezuela. Mcfaul is one of many who just carry the water and carry out orders . It's almost as if , the powers that be want the USA to fall . Because they can not be this stupid .Eamonn Wright555 , 1 year ago
Call Cohen tells the truth the other guy just lying a United States started that whole thing in Syria they backed up Isis they backed up all the terrorists and because they want to split the country up and give Israel that major part of it cuz they want the natural resources the oil out of there and everything else because that's what they do everywhere they go they want a natural Resorts and they don't care how many people they killDavide Sinigoi , 1 year ago
You know Obama is a straight faced liar . Furthermore , we genocided innocent Christians and Muslims in three countries and created a diaspora of migrants to Europe. So , we are supposed to believe that all those PhDs did not foresee that , most people think that it was your intentional outcome all along . So it goes now in Venezuela. Mcfaul is one of many who just carry the water and carry out orders . It's almost as if , the powers that be want the USA to fall . Because they can not be this stupid .Alex P. , 9 months ago
Prof. McFaul is a partisan. He bases his opinion of detailed facts, so detailed that he misses the bigger picture. The bigger picture is that he claims to be a sovereignist, but only when it comes to the US sovereignty. How about Russia's sovereignity? Or Ukraine's whose government has been toppled by a (among others) US sponsored coup? How about Syria sovereignty? He furthers the view that the US had a fair posture towards Russia, which is not. This is also demonstrated by his personal deep dislike of Putin, which is something that both a real statesman or a real scholar should not influence opinions and actions. McFaul's perspective is also flawed by the conflation of his (and Obama's) wishes and reality: that is that they donì't like Putin and think to deal with Russia as if Putin was not there, but he is. You deal with the reality, not with your wishes. Putin is legitimate and strong Russia's president, whether McFaul likes him or not. A real respect for sovereignty demands respect for the head of the state you deal with. You don't question his legitimacy, as well as they don't questioned Clinton's, Bush's, Obama or Trump legitimacy. His point of view is that everything goes on in the world should have the US sanction, otherwise is not good. This is imperial hubris, this is arrogance. This flaws his opinion in so far everything is measured upon american likes and dislikes. THis is not statesmanship, this is not scholarship, this is partisanship. He is also intellectually dishonest because he confuses a debate on right and wrong, which should be based on certain assumptions, with a debate on party interests, which has nothing to do with right and wrong, and is based on different assumptions. Indeed he is the less fit person in a debate on responsibility for the New Cold War because he was involved in its development and acutisation. Partisanship is admitted, but shouldn't be disguised as neutrality or given any relevance just because of knowledge of technical details he knows - much of them are, frankly, irrelevant. His points are weak and inconsistent with geopolitical and a realist view of the international relations, they are biased by universal-liberal ideology, they are US-centric, he forgets too many essential points about the whole story. For instance he talks about the missed chance for Russian democracy (here a debate about what democracy is: his assumption is that the US democracy is .... please, don't make me laugh), but he doesn't mention that Soviet people voted in referenda and overwhelmingly wanted the USSR to keep on existing, but he forgets this "detail". He forgets how the so much beloved Elcin sent the tanks against the parliament, many people were killed, how he allowed the pillaging of Russian people and resources by criminal oligarchs (many of them happily hosted by the UK and presented as political dissidents), and how the Russian 1996 were HEAVILY rigged and meddled by the US in order to reconfirm Elcin as a president. He complains about Putin being appointed by Elcin out of nothing. Well I can't recall any American complaints at that time, maybe because they thought he could be an alcoholic puppet like Elcin and that was clearly something the US liked and supported. So what about Obama (fake) words about wishing a strong Russia? Obama spoke derogatory words about Russia. The only American interests about Russia is that is a militarly and strategically weak provider of cheap natural resources and that is not in tne position of competing for anything. I will stop here, although I could write pages and pages about McFlaws .... ooops! McFaul's inconsistency both as a scholar and even more as a statesman's advisor, but the debate was among a great intellectual with a clear vision of the world, and a small professor taken with insignificant details and too much love for Obama and blind believe in liberal universal ideology.Rufus Leaking , 1 week ago
Mc Faul is clearly not supposed to have been in the positions of power, where he was. Something is fundamentally wrong with America. I think there is a crisis of personnel. Where are all these incredibly smart, high IQ people Harvard, Princeton, and the Ivy Leagues are supposedly pumping out?Virgocygni56 , 9 months ago
I won't, for a second, try to justify the expansion of N.A.T.O. up to the borders of Russia. But I simply cannot get past the belief that the N.A.T.O. expansion was fueled by a (not implausible) fear that a non-Soviet Russia would eventually try to surround its borders with Moscow-friendly governments, just as Stalin did before, during, and after WWII. Russia has been invaded from the west so many times that the lingering fear of it is almost in the Russian people's genetic code. What the rest of the world sees as Soviet & post-Soviet Russian paranoia and expansionism could plausibly be seen by the Russians as a prudent precaution against further western aggression. I don't AGREE with this, but I can imagine how the Russian psyche might be so inclined. I don't agree with the N.A.T.O. expansion, but I can also see how western paranoia about Russian expansionism would fuel the resulting western "encroachment". Ask people in Latvia, Lithuania & Estonia (and, for that matter, Finland) who were alive in WWII if their fear of Russian expansion is based in reality, or is merely paranoia. Be prepared for "VERY STRONG" answers.Bob Trajkoski , 1 year ago
What is the date of this debate Anyone can suggest?Alyson Mc Vitty , 1 year ago
McFaul believes in his own propaganda, irrational person and dangerous at thatJsmes Oercy , 1 year ago
2nd speaker - mcfaul - is and idiot sort of manic.Charles DuBois , 6 months ago
Wow the second guy is such a schmuck ,,z,,trying to be funny and failingJames Registe , 4 months ago
Why does 'our' US/Euro left leave me a pronounced impression that they have some special axe grinding on Russia? Is my take on this wrong? And try as I may to ignore it, my gut reaction to our younger author is highly unfavorable. I shall re-watch tomorrow hoping to listen more obectively.popiedo , 1 year ago
Who ELSE is to blame, Russia has been making overtures since KruschevColonel Chuck , 1 year ago
Mcfaul just rambles and tries to crack jokes.Adam Rihak , 3 months ago
McFaul sure runs his mouth about nothing.Jean-Pierre Delorraine , 8 months ago (edited)
Prof. Cohen astonishing realpolitik ingenuity when asked "what the security interests of Ukraine and Georgia are" ( 1:16:21 ) unveils to me his understanding of politics as kind of imperialistic chess game where the US stands against the USSR (or RF for that matter). I have experienced the same feelings from his other debates (I remember one memorable at Munk Debates in 2015) - as if the historic fears, desires and dreams (of NATO or EU membership as the only effective shield against Russian military power) of so many ex-soviet countries means absolutely nothing - as if they were mere puppets of US "regime". As though the legitimate wishes of these sovereign countries means nothing at all. He is so surprised by that question he suddenly can't retrieve even the definition of what security interests of a country actually means - a rather strange quality in a historian. Ultimately he comes up with "they should make peace with their neighbors" - say this to countries that were along their history subjects of Soviet violent repression, military invasions, ethnic genocides and such. "I don't think Russian is a threat to them". Absolutely ridiculous.varro We , 2 years ago (edited)
This Michael McFaul individual is such severe laughing-stock completely out of touch with reality. Stephen Cohen's version of the "new cold war" is much closer to reality and we should not forget the nefarious entities that pull the strings in D.C. U.S. covert involvement throughout eastern Europe and especially the Ukraine is more than evident. Putin and Russia in general is not stupid and see right through U.S. covert meddling on Russia's border. And those "peaceful demonstrators" in Syria that MacFaul dearly praises are mere agents of the CIA/Mossad complex. Where are they now?
I think it's fair to say that the US won the cold war, the eastern block was broke, there soviet union was a nightmare for humanity, the west was seen as a bright light and it was. So let's put aside propaganda, ask anyone from the eastern block and they will tell you that what Russia created was a genocide. Just look how fast all of those counties jumped to enter NATO. Soviet union collapsed. It's a very nice discussion and I learn a lot from this, there are a lot of things that US and Russia could have done to prevent another cold war, I think what we are with is with a belief in human wisdom, if there is any left.
Sep 21, 2020 | www.youtube.com
Gerry Cooney , 3 years ago (edited)Playthell Benjamin , 3 years ago
Speaking as an Independent, I say that our country, the USA, has engineered past confilcts and wars in order to feed the military industrial complex. Not so much that it results in a nuke-shooting war, but in a regular non-nuke shooting war. The solution? Send the sons and daughters of the politicians into direct combat, every time they approve another war. That should keep things a bit more peaceful.Stratus Blue , 4 years ago
Professor Cohen is this nation's most objective and therefore most valuable thinker on Russia! The charge that his views are "not patriotic" is a compliment rather than the insult they intended. A scholar's views are only valuable to the public and, more importantly, policy makers, if they are OBJECTIVE!!! Which is to say that he follows the FACTS wherever they lead!Maria Schick , 4 years ago
Any "discussion" with no mention of the supranational central bank cartel is intentional deceptive omission. The "brass ring" is forced use of petro-dollars. The central bank stock holders and bankers loaning all dollars into existence as national debt, do not care who owns land. They care who pays off national debts and interest on debt. Civil war is their racket. There are no sovereign nations. No genuine nations that create their medium of exchange publicly. No national people. Just participants in an extortion or its victims. The "Elite" collect on money they created as loans in their central banking accounts. All others are only human numbers assigned billing addresses.Madaleine , 9 months ago
Welcome to the New World Order ....where Multinational corporations rule & their profits are what are most important..... NOT nation states it's the 99.9% against the .01% and they use MSM propaganda & fear to control the DUMB masses thinkingkeepinitreal , 2 years ago
Global mafia in the background! Shut down funding cia ET AlSJ R , 4 years ago
So infuriating that videos that carry the truth have 57k views, while nasty lying propaganda has millions!Santos D , 4 years ago (edited)
I just discovered John Batchelor Show on which Cohen has a guest spot- I just was drawn to this man's thinking, probably because I had made up my mind about Russia during the Ukraine crises. Seeing the US has ruin every country we have gone into- I'm on Russia's side, especially where Russia and Ukraine has a history, on that side of the world.Cezanne Monet , 11 hours ago
38:49 - Apologies for the somewhat Utopian question here. I agree with everything Cohen has said, but regarding cause of jihadist terrorism ( ie implosion of the economies in the region), does it make sense to discuss primarily this game of terrorist whack a mole (bombing, invading and crushing Jihadist insurgencies)? Is there any point in talking about a pro active policy of recreating sustainable, stable economies in the region? What would that even look like?No Names , 4 years ago (edited)
Brilliant scholar. RIP Prof Cohen. Watch if you want to understand today's geopolitical situation. The whole situation.Chris Bowers , 4 years ago
Not very many average Americans would be able to easily access and watch this. Average Americans still consume mainly mainstream media. Too bad, because this lecture would have opened their eyes and have blown up their brain-contaminated minds by the CNN, the New York Times and alike.M Ch , 4 years ago
I agree wholeheartedly Loane. Have always been extremely impressed with and appreciative of Cohen's carefully & thoughtfully considered contribution. We in the US have gone a bit off the deep end when it comes to this deeply embedded belief in exceptionalism and superiority, and have been extremely rude to much of the rest of the world in the process. It amazes me how patient Russia has been with us, waiting for us to come around to a more sober understanding of the world we live in today. I have to conclude that what we are experiencing here in the US is a perennial phenomenon that comes with the end of all empires throughout history, the mission creep of over-extending resources and the big one, seemingly blind hubris.Raf Zam , 3 years ago (edited)
There is no chance of mending relations and even less of achieving some security partnership between US and Russia. The rift will only keep on widening as US political and financial elites are growing increasingly desperate (and thus even more aggressive) while Russia abandons its attempts to please the haters and moves its focus on to its future prospective partners who have genuine interest in cooperating with Russia and achieving common goals.... including opposing the common enemy if you like! Well at least I hope so: the only reason why US wish to get closer to Russia would be to stab it in the back... one more time!Donald Watts , 4 years ago
NATO'S reason to exist ended when the Warsaw Pact was demolished. It was created to confront the socialist Warsaw Pact but today ALL of the members of the pact are part of NATO, except Russia. So why is it still operating? Who are they confronting? They are a bunch of bureaucrats looking for a reason to stay employed in an organization that lost its excuse to be. However, their behavior has gone from increasing security to actually becoming a menace to trigger a nuclear war to destroy life on earth.William Carr , 3 years ago
It will take a Republican President to turn our relationships with hostile nations around. For some irrational reasoning, the current administration refuses negotiation with it's enemies. Somehow this is going to create understanding. and a less dangerous world. I don't see a continuation of this Administrations policy anything but reckless . I am assuming this policy has been one determined through Clinton, and will remain so. Clinton has said on a number of occasions, it is the Obama Administration's policies that will be hers as well. As an ex cold warrior, who has spent a lot of time chasing Soviet boomers in the North Atlantic, I am not willing to gamble my children and grand children's lives . It is a dangerous and ego driven pissing match. Let us start talking , This administration and families can climb into their luxury nuclear bomb proof bunkers...... My family and most Americans don't have that luxury.
Dr. Cohen, so Putin gave the Northern Alliance to the USA after 911 to bludgeon Afghanistan for hiding Bin Laden? Paul Craig Robert, David Ray Griffin and a growing list of Americans believe 911 was a total bamboozle. If that is true which it looks increasingly like it was, does that mean Putin was playing along with the our Reichstag fire? What does that make Putin? NATO should have been totally remade after 1986, but it wasn't and we simply missed a huge opportunity not for worldwide U.S. hegemony, but for a new umbrella of security by super powers in alliance. Obviously, the proliferation of ethno-religious groups was in Putin's mind when he welcomed us into Afghanistan, but damn it man, tell people EXACTLY why we and the Russians want to be in the Golden Crescent besides the extraction of minerals.
Jun 23, 2017 | www.youtube.com
Stephen Cohen at the American Jewish Committee Forum 2017, about Russia and Terrorism. Full debate
alo1, 3 years agoDrew Hunkins, 3 years ago
And again, Cohen smashed these government employers singlehandedly.mitrovdan, 3 years ago
This incessant Russophobia constantly being trumpeted by the Washington militarist imperialists must stop. It's putting the world on the brink of nuclear war.
Stephen Cohen's a godsend along with a handful of the other intellectuals out there speaking and writing the truth that penetrates the miasma of disinformation, half-truths and exaggerations emanating from the state-corporate nexus in the American mass media.
Cohen, along with John Pilger, James Petras, Robert Parry, Michael Parenti, John Pilger, Eva Bartlett, Diana Johnstone and Paul Craig Roberts must be read widely in order for folks to get a grasp of where the Washington imperialist ruling class is driving the world.MrWebster, 3 years ago
at 25:40 he just destroys her totally. what a point he made, amazing!! "thank you professor" the guy on the left wants to end Cohen's carnage of the so called experts. Cohen made minced meat out of em. Fact after fact...stonewalled em both. Listen to her, ISIS doesn't have nuke's, she obviously doesn't have a clue.DSCdaP, 3 years ago
Cohen is always cogent and convincing. One area I wish some historian would look into is how "Russia-gate" is not echoing Cold War themes, but echoing themes from the German Nazis in particular their belief about a great Jewish conspiracy against Europe.
Even Putin recently remarked on all these accusations: "It reminds me of anti-Semitism, A dumb man who can't do anything would blame the Jews for everything." Look at how Putin is drawn and pictured on major outlets. The NYTimes blamed resistance to TPP on Putin.
The Russians like the Jews are behind every social problem. Popular culture shows and speaks of Russia in the same way Nazi propagandists wrote about Russia.
Undermining Western liberal democracies, Jews were compared to spiders catching people in the webs. Same with Putin. Pick up Hitler's speech after the invasion of the Soviet Union justifying it., Echos? Accidental rhetoric of conspiracies ?MrRondonmon , 1 day ago
"to look past a long list of transgressions and abuses..." this is what I absolutely hate about America, they are all so stupid and ignorant to their own countries misdeeds it is unbelievable, infuriating beyond belief. The US is currently fighting 7 wars simultaneously, which it all started itself under false pretences and hid the real reason beneath a thick layer of BS propaganda and misinformation.
The secession of Crimea is the least egregious event of the entire conflicts history. The EU and US have pumped billions of dollars into the coup which took place weeks before the Crimean referendum, on the 20th of February 2014, 2 weeks prior to that, an intercepted phone conversation between Victoria Nuland (Assistant Secretary of State of the United States to Europe) and Geoffrey Pyatt (US Ambassador to the Ukraine) was leaked on February 4th, 2014. In this phone conversation, they describe key positions within the Ukrainian government being filled by Klitshko and Yatz... fast forward a few weeks, who do we see? Klitsh and Yatz! It was the most obvious sponsored coup in history.
Putin snatched the Crimean peninsula from NATO, who wanted to seize Russias military harbour in Sevastopol (which the Russians have used to supply Syria, this was one and a half years before they entered the conflict directly, apart from being a very important strategic harbour in general), by suggesting a referendum to the local government and they accepted.
Why? Because they were ethnic Russians and knew who gained power in Kiev, the neo-Nazi, Bandera-worshipping OUN, which the US has nourished, supported and developed for the last 100 years within the Ukrainian territory. These Nazis hate Russians, they have a deep seeded hatred of all things Russian which has been indoctrinated and drilled into them by the CIA for decades, the first thing they did after seizing power was to demote the Russian language from the official list of languages of the Ukraine.
They have since honoured Ukrainian Nazi-collaborators from WWII by erecting statues, renaming streets, creating new holidays etc. This is just one example of US misinformation and propaganda, nothing they say accurately describes the truth, nothing, not one thing has it's bases in reality. Be it about Libya, Syria, Afghanistan, Iraq, and what have you, it's all lies and propaganda to mask their intentions.
North Korea is another example. North Korea is a hornets nest they kick once in a while to scare the Japanese and South Koreans into tolerating US occupation longer. Everything North Korea does is a direct response to threats and intimidations by the US. They staged a drill off the coast of North Korea which they called "Decapitation" for F's sake.
They have ratcheted up the tension again these past few months to sneak in their THAAD weapons stations, before the new President was chosen. And these THAAD systems have absolutely nothing to do with North Korea, it's against China and Russia, North Korea is a pretext.
The still active war, which has merely been under a seize fire for decades, against North Korea, could have been ended before there was colour television, but the US needs North Korea to exist in order to justify their occupation of S.Korea and Japan.Patty Rogers , 3 years ago
And by the way, the CrowdStrike guy testified in 2017 that there was ZERO PROOF that the Russians hacked the DNC, but Schiff hid that for 2 years until John Ratcliff threatened to declassify it, then Schiff's sorry ass released the interviews. So, this man was 100 percent right, there is ZERO PROOF the Russians or anyone hacked the DNC. Its a damned lie, and it was always a lie.beija flor , 2 years ago (edited)
As usual, the journalists and leftist have nothing to offer- no facts, no forensic evidence, no truth. Only speculation hyperbole and hysteria. I don't believe Russia are the good guys but give me a break in all this crap!Beth Lemmon, 2 years ago (edited)
why did cohen tell everyone even potential 'terrorists' that there is too much of exactly what 'terrorists' wish to get their hands on in the former soviet states?!!? if he is 'so afraid' of 'terrorism...' WHY did he say THAT?!!? not very bright... or perhaps he is FOS. idk?! wth?! SMH. maybe e is trying to inform people who r not 'terrorists,' so that people know n can figure out how to address the issues...?
Yet, for any terrorists who wanted to know how to get materials he spoke of, now they may know a region where they could potentially go to attain the materials... maybe in 'terrorists' circles they all know this already? it just seems concerning, is all...
Love Stephen Cohen, he is spot on and right about most if not all points, he's fair, wicked smart and sober minded. However he isn't right about POTUS Trump. If anyone has been watching this type of discourse about world geopolitics it looks like the NWO wants wars to depopulate the earth, set up a OWG and a utopia. It's so blatantly obvious to those who are honest and not ideologically possessed.
They recruit their stupid Antifa army and zombie possessed minions to do their dirty work in the streets. They want send our amazing military to do the fighting wars that are just to feed the MIC, and does nothing for America's good.
Sep 19, 2020 | www.strategic-culture.org
Stephen F Cohen, the renowned American scholar on Russia and leading authority on US-Russian relations, has died of lung cancer at the age of 81.
As one of the precious few western voices of sanity on the subject of Russia while everyone else has been frantically flushing their brains down the toilet, this is a real loss. I myself have cited Cohen's expert analysis many times in my own work, and his perspective has played a formative role in my understanding of what's really going on with the monolithic cross-partisan manufacturing of consent for increased western aggressions against Moscow.
In a world that is increasingly confusing and awash with propaganda, Cohen's death is a blow to humanity's desperate quest for clarity and understanding.
I don't know how long Cohen had cancer. I don't know how long he was aware that he might not have much time left on this earth. What I do know is he spent much of his energy in his final years urgently trying to warn the world about the rapidly escalating danger of nuclear war, which in our strange new reality he saw as in many ways completely unprecedented.
The last of the many books Cohen authored was 2019's War with Russia? , detailing his ideas on how the complex multi-front nature of the post-2016 cold war escalations against Moscow combines with Russiagate and other factors to make it in some ways more dangerous even than the most dangerous point of the previous cold war.
"You know it's easy to joke about this, except that we're at maybe the most dangerous moment in US-Russian relations in my lifetime, and maybe ever," Cohen told The Young Turks in 2017. "And the reason is that we're in a new cold war, by whatever name. We have three cold war fronts that are fraught with the possibility of hot war, in the Baltic region where NATO is carrying out an unprecedented military buildup on Russia's border, in Ukraine where there is a civil and proxy war between Russia and the west, and of course in Syria, where Russian aircraft and American warplanes are flying in the same territory. Anything could happen."
Cohen repeatedly points to the most likely cause of a future nuclear war: not one that is planned but one which erupts in tense, complex situations where "anything could happen" in the chaos and confusion as a result of misfire, miscommunication or technical malfunction, as nearly happened many times during the last cold war.
"I think this is the most dangerous moment in American-Russian relations, at least since the Cuban missile crisis," Cohen told Democracy Now in 2017. "And arguably, it's more dangerous, because it's more complex. Therefore, we -- and then, meanwhile, we have in Washington these -- and, in my judgment, factless accusations that Trump has somehow been compromised by the Kremlin. So, at this worst moment in American-Russian relations, we have an American president who's being politically crippled by the worst imaginable -- it's unprecedented. Let's stop and think. No American president has ever been accused, essentially, of treason. This is what we're talking about here, or that his associates have committed treason."
"Imagine, for example, John Kennedy during the Cuban missile crisis," Cohen added. "Imagine if Kennedy had been accused of being a secret Soviet Kremlin agent. He would have been crippled. And the only way he could have proved he wasn't was to have launched a war against the Soviet Union. And at that time, the option was nuclear war."
"A recurring theme of my recently published book War with Russia? is that the new Cold War is more dangerous, more fraught with hot war, than the one we survived," Cohen wrote last year . "Histories of the 40-year US-Soviet Cold War tell us that both sides came to understand their mutual responsibility for the conflict, a recognition that created political space for the constant peace-keeping negotiations, including nuclear arms control agreements, often known as détente. But as I also chronicle in the book, today's American Cold Warriors blame only Russia, specifically 'Putin's Russia,' leaving no room or incentive for rethinking any US policy toward post-Soviet Russia since 1991."
"Finally, there continues to be no effective, organized American opposition to the new Cold War," Cohen added. "This too is a major theme of my book and another reason why this Cold War is more dangerous than was its predecessor. In the 1970s and 1980s, advocates of détente were well-organized, well-funded, and well-represented, from grassroots politics and universities to think tanks, mainstream media, Congress, the State Department, and even the White House. Today there is no such opposition anywhere."
"A major factor is, of course, 'Russiagate'," Cohen continued. "As evidenced in the sources I cite above, much of the extreme American Cold War advocacy we witness today is a mindless response to President Trump's pledge to find ways to 'cooperate with Russia' and to the still-unproven allegations generated by it. Certainly, the Democratic Party is not an opposition party in regard to the new Cold War."
"Détente with Russia has always been a fiercely opposed, crisis-ridden policy pursuit, but one manifestly in the interests of the United States and the world," Cohen wrote in another essay last year. "No American president can achieve it without substantial bipartisan support at home, which Trump manifestly lacks. What kind of catastrophe will it take -- in Ukraine, the Baltic region, Syria, or somewhere on Russia's electric grid -- to shock US Democrats and others out of what has been called, not unreasonably, their Trump Derangement Syndrome, particularly in the realm of American national security? Meanwhile, the Bulletin of Atomic Scientists has recently reset its Doomsday Clock to two minutes before midnight."
And now Stephen Cohen is dead, and that clock is inching ever closer to midnight. The Russiagate psyop that he predicted would pressure Trump to advance dangerous cold war escalations with no opposition from the supposed opposition party has indeed done exactly that with nary a peep of criticism from either partisan faction of the political/media class. Cohen has for years been correctly predicting this chilling scenario which now threatens the life of every organism on earth, even while his own life was nearing its end.
And now the complex cold war escalations he kept urgently warning us about have become even more complex with the addition of nuclear-armed China to the multiple fronts the US-centralized empire has been plate-spinning its brinkmanship upon, and it is clear from the ramping up of anti-China propaganda since last year that we are being prepped for those aggressions to continue to increase.
We should heed the dire warnings that Cohen spent his last breaths issuing. We should demand a walk-back of these insane imperialist aggressions which benefit nobody and call for détente with Russia and China. We should begin creating an opposition to this world-threatening flirtation with armageddon before it is too late. Every life on this planet may well depend on our doing so.
Stephen Cohen is dead, and we are marching toward the death of everything. God help us all.
novictim , 55 minutes agoPerilouseTimes , 48 minutes ago
People are just now starting to realize that possible alternate path. But the Demoncrats in the USA must first be put down, politically euthanized, along with their neocon never-Trump Republican partners. And that cleaning up is on the way. Trump's second term will be the advancement of the USA-Russia initiative that is so long overdue.awesomepic4u , 1 hour ago
Putin won't let western billionaires rape Russia's enormous natural resources and on top of that Putin is against child molesters, that is what this Russia bashing is all about.Clint Liquor , 44 minutes ago
Sad to hear this.
What a good man. It is a real shame that we dont have others to stand up to this crazy pr that is going on right now. Making peace with the world at this point is important. We dont need or want another war and i am sure that both Europe and Russia dont want it on their turf but it seems we keep sticking our finger in their eye. If there is another war it will be the last war. As Einstein said, after the 3rd World War we will be using sticks and stones to fight it.thunderchief , 41 minutes ago
Cohen truly was an island of reason in a sea of insanity. Ironic that those panicked over climate change are unconcerned about the increasing threat of Nuclear War.Eastern Whale , 55 minutes ago
One of the very few level headed people on Russia.
All thats left are anti Russia-phobic nut jobs.
Send in the clowns.
Stephen Cohen isn't around to call them what they are anymore.fucking truth , 3 minutes ago
cooperate with Russia
Has the US ever cooperated with anyone?Mustafa Kemal , 49 minutes ago
That is the crux. All or nothing.Normal , 1 hour ago
Ive read several of his books. They are essential, imo, if you want to understand modern russian history.evoila , 19 minutes ago
The bankers created the new CCP cold war.thebigunit , 17 minutes ago
Max Boot is an effing idiot. Tucker wiped him clean too. It was an insult to Stephen to even put them on the same panel.
Gary Sick is the equivalent to Stephen, except for Iran. He too is of an era of competence which is and will be missed as their voices are drowned out by neocon warmongersBoogity , 9 minutes ago
I heard Stephen Cohen a number of time in John Bachelor's podcasts.
He seemed very lucid and made a lot of sense.
He made it very clear that he thought the Democrat's "Trump - Russia collusion schtick" was a bunch of crap.
He didn't sound like a leftie, but I'm sure he never told me the stuff he discussed with his wife who was editor of the left wing "The Nation" magazine.
Cohen was a traditional old school anti-war Liberal. They're essentially extinct now with the exception of a few such as Tulsi Gabbard and Dennis Kucinich who have both been ostracized from the Democrat Party and the political system.
Sep 20, 2020 | www.brookings.edu
The paper's biggest single recommendation was that the United States and EU establish a Counter-Disinformation Coalition, a public/private group bringing together, on a regular basis, government and non-government stakeholders, including social media companies, traditional media, Internet service providers (ISPs), and civil society groups. The Counter-Disinformation Coalition would develop best practices for confronting disinformation from nondemocratic countries, consistent with democratic norms. It also recommended that this coalition start with a voluntary code of conduct outlining principles and agreed procedures for dealing with disinformation, drawing from the recommendations as summarized above.
In drawing up these recommendations, we were aware that disinformation most often comes from domestic, not foreign, sources. 8 While Russian and other disinformation players are known to work in coordination with domestic purveyors of disinformation, both overtly and covertly, the recommendations are limited to foreign disinformation, which falls within the scope of "political warfare." Nevertheless, it may be that these policy recommendations, particularly those focused on transparency and social resilience, may be applicable to combatting other forms of disinformation.
Sep 20, 2020 | www.zerohedge.com
Authored (mostly satirically) by CJ Hopkins via The Consent Factory,
So, it appears the War on Populism is building toward an exciting climax. All the proper pieces are in place for a Class-A GloboCap color revolution , and maybe even civil war. You got your unauthorized Putin-Nazi president, your imaginary apocalyptic pandemic, your violent identitarian civil unrest, your heavily-armed politically-polarized populace, your ominous rumblings from military quarters you couldn't really ask for much more.
OK, the plot is pretty obvious by now (as it is in all big-budget action spectacles, which is essentially what color revolutions are), but that won't spoil our viewing experience. The fun isn't in guessing what is going to happen. Everybody knows what's going to happen. The fun is in watching Bruce, or Sigourney, or "the moderate rebels," or the GloboCap "Resistance," take down the monster, or the terrorists, or Hitler, and save the world, or democracy, or whatever.
Sep 19, 2020 | www.thenation.com
Putin's quest for a transformed nation and his own legacy. By Stephen F. CohenFEBRUARY 21, 2020fb tw mail Print
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T he US media's three-year obsession with the mostly fictitious allegations of "Russiagate" has all but obscured, even deleted, important, potentially historic, developments inside that nation itself, still the world's largest territorial country. One of the most important is the Putin government's decision to invest $300-to-$400 billion of "rainy day" funds in the nation's infrastructure, especially in its vast, underdeveloped provinces, and on "national projects" ranging from education to health care and family services to transportation and other technology. If successfully implemented, Russia would be substantially transformed and the lives of its people significantly improved.
Not surprisingly, however, the plan has aroused considerable controversy and public debate in Russia's policy elite, primarily for two reasons. The funds were accumulated largely due to high world prices for Russia's energy exports and the state's budgetary austerity during the decade after Putin came to power in 2000, and they have been hoarded as a safeguard against Western economic sanctions and/or a global economic depression. (Russia's economic collapse in the Yeltsin 1990s, perhaps the worst modern-day depression in peacetime, remains a vivid memory for policy-makers and ordinary citizens alike.)
There is also the nation's long, sometimes traumatic, history of "modernization from above," as it is termed. In the late 19th century, the czarist regime's program to industrialize the country, "to catch up" with other world powers, had unintended consequences that led, in the accounts of many historians, to the end of czarism in the 1917 revolution. And Stalin's "revolution from above" of the 1930s, based on the forced collectivization of the peasantry, which at the time accounted for more than 80 percent of the population, along with very rapid industrialization, resulted in millions of deaths and economic distortions that burdened Soviet and post-Soviet Russia for decades.
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Nor are Russia's alternative experiences of modernization from below inspiring or at least instructive. In the 1920s, during the years known as the New Economic Policy, or NEP, the victorious Bolsheviks pursued evolutionary economic development through a semi-regulated market economy. It had mixed -- and still disputed -- results, and it was brutally abolished by Stalin in 1929. Decades later, Yeltsin's "free-market reforms" were widely blamed for the ruination and widespread misery of the 1990s, which featured many aspects of actual de-modernization.
With all this "living history" in mind, Putin's plan for such large-scale (and rapid) investment has generated the controversy in Moscow and resulted in three positions within the policy class. One fully supports the decision on the essentially Keynesian grounds that it will spur Russia's annual economic growth, which has lagged below the global average for several years. Another opposes such massive expenditures, arguing that the funds must remain in state hands as a safeguard against the US-led "sanctions war" (and perhaps worse) against Russia. And, as usual in politics, there is a compromise position that less should be invested in civilian infrastructure and less quickly.
Running through the discussion is also Russia's long history of thwarted implementation of good intentions. To paraphrase a prime minister during the 1990s, Viktor Chernomyrdin , "We wanted things to turn out for the best, but they turned out as usual." In particular, it is often asked, what will be the consequences of putting so much money into the hands of regional and other local officials in provinces where corruption is endemic? How much will be stolen or otherwise misdirected?
Nonetheless, Putin seems to be resolute. He is also insistent that his ambitious plan to transform Russia requires a long period of international peace and stability. Here again is plain evidence that those in Washington who insist Putin's primary goal is "to sow discord, divisions, and instability" in the world, especially in the West, where he hopes to find "modernizing partnerships," do not care about or understand what is actually unfolding inside Russia -- or Putin's vision of his own historical role and legacy.
Listen to the podcast here .
Stephen F. Cohen Stephen F. Cohen is a professor emeritus of Russian studies and politics at New York University and Princeton University. A Nation contributing editor, his most recent book, War With Russia? From Putin & Ukraine to Trump & Russiagate , is available in paperback and in an ebook edition. His weekly conversations with the host of The John Batchelor Show , now in their seventh year, are available at www.thenation.com .
Sep 19, 2020 | www.nytimes.com
By Robert D. McFadden
Published Sept. 18, 2020 Updated Sept. 19, 2020, 9:37 a.m. ET
Stephen F. Cohen, an eminent historian whose books and commentaries on Russia examined the rise and fall of Communism, Kremlin dictatorships and the emergence of a post-Soviet nation still struggling for identity in the 21st century, died on Friday at his home in Manhattan. He was 81.
His wife, Katrina vanden Heuvel, the publisher and part owner of The Nation, said the cause was lung cancer.
From the sprawling conflicts of the 1917 Bolshevik revolution and the tyrannies of Stalin to the collapse of the Soviet Union and Vladimir V. Putin's intrigues to retain power, Professor Cohen chronicled a Russia of sweeping social upheavals and the passions and poetry of peoples that endured a century of wars, political repression and economic hardships.
A professor emeritus of Russian studies at Princeton University and New York University, he was fluent in Russian, visited Russia frequently and developed contacts among intellectual dissidents and government and Communist Party officials. He wrote or edited 10 books and many articles for The Nation, The New York Times and other publications, was a CBS-TV commentator and counted President George Bush and many American and Soviet officials among his sources.
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In Moscow he was befriended by the last Soviet leader, Mikhail S. Gorbachev, who invited him to the May Day celebration at Red Square in 1989. There, at the Lenin Mausoleum, Professor Cohen stood with his wife and son one tier below Mr. Gorbachev and the Soviet leadership to view a three-hour military parade. He later spoke briefly on Russian television to a vast audience about alternative paths that Russian history could have taken.
Loosely identified with a revisionist historical view of the Soviet Union, Professor Cohen held views that made him a controversial public intellectual. He believed that early Bolshevism had held great promise, that it had been democratic and genuinely socialist, and that it had been corrupted only later by civil war, foreign hostility, Stalin's malignancy and a fatalism in Russian history.
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A traditionalist school of thought, by contrast, held that the Soviet experiment had been flawed from the outset, that Lenin's political vision was totalitarian, and that any attempt to create a society based on his coercive utopianism had always been likely to lead, logically, to Stalin's state terrorism and to the Soviet Union's eventual collapse.
Professor Cohen was an enthusiastic supporter of Mr. Gorbachev, who after coming to power in 1985 undertook ambitious changes to liberate the nation's 15 republics from state controls that had originally been imposed by Stalin. Mr. Gorbachev gave up power as the Soviet state imploded at the end of 1991 and moved toward beliefs in democracy and a market economy.
Sep 19, 2020 | www.rt.com
19 Sep, 2020 11:44 / Updated 4 hours ago Get short URL Prof. Stephen F. Cohen © Getty Images via AFP / Eugene Gologursky 118 Follow RT on Stephen F. Cohen, the leading American Russia expert of his generation and a celebrated historian of Russia and the Soviet Union, who became a vocal critic of Washington's "new Cold War" with Moscow, has died at the age of 81.
Cohen succumbed to lung cancer at his home in Manhattan, on Friday, according to his wife Katrina vanden Heuvel, who is also the part-owner and publisher of The Nation magazine, where he worked as a contributing editor.
A native of Kentucky, he was a prolific and prominent scholar in his field, serving as a professor emeritus of Russian studies at Princeton University and New York University. As a frequent visitor to Russia, Cohen became well-connected among leading Soviet dissidents, politicians and thinkers in the 1980s, even befriending Soviet premier Mikhail Gorbachev.
Cohen also advised former US President George Bush, senior, in the late 1980s, and assisted Anna Larina, the widow of Nikolai Bukharin, to rehabilitate her husband's name during the Soviet era. He had earlier written a biography of the journalist and politician, which argued that had Bukharin succeeded Vladimir Lenin as Bolshevik leader, rather than Joseph Stalin, the Soviet Union would have enjoyed greater openness, and perhaps even democracy.
Breaking with many American academics and political commentators, Cohen was highly critical of Washington's approach to Russia following the collapse of the Soviet Union. He warned of the dangers of NATO expansion and argued that much of the economic devastation seen in Russia during the 1990s could be traced to bad-faith policies and advice from the United States.
His principled, and patriotic stand, led to smears from members of the think tank racket and both liberal and neoconservative interventionists, keen to stoke tensions with Moscow. Cohen was labelled a Putin apologist. He responded by saying that he saw him as being "in the Russian tradition of leadership, getting Russia back on its feet."READ MORE Will the Mueller report make the New Cold War even worse? (by Stephen Cohen)
After the election of Donald Trump, Cohen found himself in the crosshairs of the mainstream media for challenging the now-debunked Russiagate narrative, which he said was being used to sabotage bilateral relations and trigger a "new Cold War" with Moscow.
The unsubstantiated claim that Trump's presidential campaign "colluded" with the Kremlin would likely make a US-Russia detente "impossible" and could even help fuel an actual war between the two nations, Cohen argued. He lamented that Special Counsel Robert Mueller's probe into the conspiracy theory, which found no evidence of collusion, would do little to tone down the fiery rhetoric and anonymously sourced media hysteria concerning Russia and its alleged influence over the US political system.
The author of numerous books and countless articles, Cohen was a frequent guest on RT, where he often used his air time to sound the alarm over the dangerous state of US-Russia relations, lamenting that the hostility was both unnecessary and potentially calamitous.
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Sep 17, 2020 | www.rt.com
Bondibeach 4 hours ago 17 Sep, 2020 04:32 PMThe USA political establishment is seeking confirmation of its insanity using lies, more lies then more lies. Democracy is dead in the USA and is replaced with perjury, violence, nationwide corruption and full blown insanity. All politicians need the rope.WakeUpGoyim 4 hours ago 17 Sep, 2020 05:03 PMDuring Obamas 2nd run for president (see YouTube) he openly said Russia was not hostile & Mitt Romney said Russia was an enemy - Romney got hammed for saying this. Today if Trump says Russia is Americas friend, the media then say he is an agent. People have short memories, or so the media thinks so, actually most people do, most cant even remember why countries went on lock-down.NoJustice WakeUpGoyim 4 hours ago 17 Sep, 2020 05:17 PMNo. He said Russia wasn't the number one threat.apothqowejh 4 hours ago 17 Sep, 2020 04:31 PMThe CIA was founded by the same fascists who tried to enlist Smedley Butler to overthrow FDR. During the post-war period, they smuggled their ideological brethren out of Germany with operation Paperclip. Their founding fathers included Prescott Bush, a Nazi, whose son and grandson went on to become US Presidents. They have never stopped hating Russia, nor have they ever stopped lying to the American Public.FFII 2 hours ago 17 Sep, 2020 06:45 PMOMG.... Biden is a perfect candidate for Russia. Old, dumb and predictable. With a cart load of corruption evidence from Ukraine sources, regarding his dealing with Poroshenko personaly and his son with Ukrainian gas company, earning millions___RICHLAND__ 2 hours ago 17 Sep, 2020 07:00 PMAs an Australian i've seen Biden's handywork in Ukraine, trust me, the guy's an Expert in Over-throwing an Elected Government"frankfalseflag 49 minutes ago 17 Sep, 2020 08:52 PMDid you know that the FBI takes its orders from the CIA?mumbojumbo272 2 hours ago 17 Sep, 2020 07:41 PMOh, Wray forced out of comfort zone following is ''gang'' being sub-poena by senate to divert attention on Russia. Interesting !NotARussianBot 1 hour ago 17 Sep, 2020 08:20 PMDid he wipe his phone clean before testifying? 😀
Sep 17, 2020 | rt.com
Russia is reprising its still-unproven 2016 election meddling efforts, this time targeting Democratic challenger Joe Biden, according to FBI Director Christopher Wray, who gave no evidence to support his crowd-pleasing claims.
Wray told the House of Representatives that Russia is taking a " very active " role in the 2020 US election, claiming Moscow " continues to try to influence our elections, primarily through what we call malign foreign influence " during a Thursday hearing on national security threats.ALSO ON RT.COM Damned if you do, damned if you don't? US intel director warns all election outcomes may be driven by Russia, China or Iran
According to the FBI director, the Russians' primary goal seems to be not only to " sow divisiveness and discord ," but to trash Democratic nominee Joe Biden – along with " what the Russians see as a kind of anti-Russian establishment " – through social media, " use of proxies ," state-run media, and " online journals ."
Wray contrasted 2020's alleged meddling with that of 2016, which he claimed involved " an effort to target election infrastructure ," presenting no evidence to back up either current or past claims – other than that the FBI or other intelligence agencies had made the same claims in the past. There is no actual evidence that Russia interfered with election infrastructure in 2016.
While four years of similarly flavored conspiracy theories blaming Russia for Donald Trump's 2016 win have come up empty-handed, the paucity of real-world evidence for 'Russian meddling' has not stopped Wray and other US intel officials from hyping it up as a major threat to the integrity of the democratic process.
The National Counterintelligence and Security Center suggested last month that, while Russia would interfere in the election in favor of Trump, China and Iran would meddle on behalf of Biden – implying Americans couldn't vote at all without doing the bidding of a foreign nation.
Former Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats even suggested Congress create another election integrity body to supervise the vote in November, apparently concerned the existing authorities – all 54 of them, one for each state plus four federal entities tasked with keeping meddlers, foreign and domestic, shut out – weren't enough.
TWOhand 5 hours ago 17 Sep, 2020 03:49 PM"Crowd pleasing claims" is spot on the money. Sounds like the FBI has been tasked to lay some groundwork for the "after party". He knows what he is doing.danko79 4 hours ago 17 Sep, 2020 04:22 PMCan't feel anything but sympathy for those that are so easily influenced. If/when Biden loses, perhaps blaming his lack of ability to string a few words together might be more relevant than any kind of imaginary foreign interference.Terry Ross 4 hours ago 17 Sep, 2020 04:43 PMNothing new from the man who was Comey's assistant AG when Comey was Deputy Attorney General. Wray made it clear when sworn in for position of FBI head that he believed Russia had interfered to help Trump win 2016 election. The only question that remains is why Trump picked him for the job.
Sep 17, 2020 | www.rt.com
apothqowejh 4 hours ago 17 Sep, 2020 04:31 PMThe CIA was founded by the same fascists who tried to enlist Smedley Butler to overthrow FDR. During the post-war period, they smuggled their ideological brethren out of Germany with operation Paperclip. Their founding fathers included Prescott Bush, a Nazi, whose son and grandson went on to become US Presidents.
They have never stopped hating Russia, nor have they ever stopped lying to the American Public.
Sep 16, 2020 | www.moonofalabama.org
Every few days U.S. 'intelligence' and 'officials' produce fake claims about this or that 'hostile' country. U.S. media continue to reproduce those claims even if they bare any logic and do not make any sense.
On June 27 the New York Times and the Washington Post published fake news about alleged Russian payments to the Taliban for killing U.S. troops.
The stories ran on the outlets' front pages.
Two week later the story was shown to have no basis :
[T]hat the story was obviously bullshit did not prevent Democrats in Congress, including 'Russiagate' swindler Adam Schiff, to bluster about it and to call for immediate briefings and new sanctions on Russia .
Just a day after it was published the main accusation, that Trump was briefed on the 'intelligence' died. The Director of National Intelligence, the National Security Advisor and the CIA publicly rejected the claim. Then the rest of the story started to crumble. On June 2, just one week after it was launched, the story was declared dead .
The NYT buried the above quoted dead corpse of the original story page A-19.
Despite that the Democrats continued to use the fake story for attacks on Donald Trump.
Yesterday the commander of the U.S. forces in the Middle East drove a stake though the heart of the dead corpse of the original story:Two months after top Pentagon officials vowed to get to the bottom of whether the Russian government bribed the Taliban to kill American service members , the commander of troops in the region says a detailed review of all available intelligence has not been able to corroborate the existence of such a program.
"It just has not been proved to a level of certainty that satisfies me," Gen. Frank McKenzie, commander of the U.S. Central Command, told NBC News. McKenzie oversees U.S. troops in Afghanistan.
But as one fake news zombie finally dies others get resurrected. Politico's 'intelligence' stenographer Natasha Bertrand produced this nonsensical claim :The Iranian government is weighing an assassination attempt against the American ambassador to South Africa, U.S. intelligence reports say, according to a U.S. government official familiar with the issue and another official who has seen the intelligence.
News of the plot comes as Iran continues to seek ways to retaliate for President Donald Trump's decision to kill a powerful Iranian general earlier this year, the officials said. If carried out, it could dramatically ratchet up already serious tensions between the U.S. and Iran and create enormous pressure on Trump to strike back -- possibly in the middle of a tense election season.
U.S. officials have been aware of a general threat against the ambassador, Lana Marks, since the spring, the officials said. But the intelligence about the threat to the ambassador has become more specific in recent weeks. The Iranian Embassy in Pretoria is involved in the plot, the U.S. government official said.
Ambassador Lana Marks is known for selling overpriced handbags and for her donations to Trump's campaign. To Iran she has zero political or symbolic value. There is no way Iran would ever think about an attack on such a target. Accordingly the South African intelligence services do not believe that there is such a threat:South African Minister of State Security Ayanda Dlodlo said the matter was "receiving the necessary attention" and that the State Security Agency (SSA) was "interacting with all relevant partners both in the country and abroad, to ensure that no harm will be suffered by the US Ambassador, including any other Diplomatic Officials inside the borders of our country."
However, an informed intelligence source told Daily Maverick that although the "matter has been taken seriously as we approach all such threats, specifically, there appears to be, from our perspective, no discernible threat. Least of all from the source that it purports to emanate from.
There was "no evidence or indicator", the source said, so the plot was "not likely to be real". The "associations made are not sustainable on any level but all precautions will be put in place".
The source suggested this was an instance of the "tail wagging the dog", of the Trump administration wielding a "weapon of mass distraction" to divert attention from its failures in the election campaign running up to President Donald Trump's re-election bid on November 3.
The spokesperson for the Iranian ministry of foreign affairs, Saeed Khatibzadeh, strongly denied the allegation in the Politico report which he called "hackneyed and worn-out anti-Iran propaganda".
In January the U.S. assassinated the Iranian General Qassem Soleimani in Baghdad. Soleimani led the external campaigns of the Iranian Quds Forces. He was the one who orchestrated the campaign that defeated the Islamic State. His mythic-symbolic position for Iran and the resistance in the Middle East is beyond that of any U.S. figure.
There is simply no one in the U.S. military or political hierarchy who could be seen as his equal. Iran has therefore announced that it will take other ways to revenge the assassination of Soleimani.
As an immediate response to the assassination of Soleimani Iran had launched a precise missile attack against two U.S. bases in Iraq. It has also announced that it will make sure that the U.S. military will have to leave the Middle East. That program is in full swing now as U.S. bases in Iraq are again coming under daily missile attacks :More than eight months after a barrage of rockets killed an American contractor and wounded four American service members in Kirkuk, Iraq, militia groups continue to target U.S. military bases in that country, and the frequency of those attacks has increased.
"We have had more indirect fire attacks around and against our bases the first half of this year than we did the first half of last year," Gen. Frank McKenzie, the commander of the U.S. Central Command, said. "Those attacks have been higher."
McKenzie's comments came just hours after he announced the United States would be cutting its footprint in Iraq by almost half by the end of September, with about 2,200 troops leaving the country .
Just hours agon two Katyusha rockets were fired against the U.S. embassy in Baghdad's Green Zone. Two British/U.S.convoys also came under attack . U.S. air defense took the missiles down but its anti-missile fire is only further disgruntling the Iraqi population.
These attacks are still limited and designed to not cause any significant casualties. But they will continue to increase over time until the last U.S. soldier is withdrawn from Afghanistan, Iraq, Syria and other Middle East countries. That, and only that, is the punishment Iran promised as revenge for Soleimani's death.
The alleged Iranian thread against the U.S. ambassador to South Africa is just another fake news propaganda story. It is useful only for lame blustering:Donald J. Trump @realDonaldTrump - 3:04 UTC · Sep 15, 2020
According to press reports, Iran may be planning an assassination, or other attack, against the United States in retaliation for the killing of terrorist leader Soleimani, which was carried out for his planning a future attack, murdering U.S. Troops, and the death & suffering...
...caused over so many years. Any attack by Iran, in any form, against the United States will be met with an attack on Iran that will be 1,000 times greater in magnitude!
The danger of such fake stories about Russia or Iran is that they might be used to justify a response in the case of a false flag attack on the alleged targets.
Should something inconvenient happen to Ambassador Lana Marks the Trump administration could use the fake story as an excuse to respond with a limited attack on Iran.
It is well known by now that U.S. President Donald Trump is lying about every time he opens his mouth. Why do U.S. journalists presume that the agencies and anonymous officials who work under him are more truthful in their utterings than the man himself is hard to understand. Why do they swallow their bullshit?
Posted by b on September 15, 2020 at 11:50 UTC | Permalink
jo6pac , Sep 15 2020 12:01 utc | 1Amerikas propaganda machine never sleeps and sadly to many people believe the BSSunny Runny Burger , Sep 15 2020 12:27 utc | 2US and European journalists are also lying constantly, that's why. Even when they make embarrassing attempts at "being unbiased" or "factual". Do they understand it? Many might not, but some do, perhaps fewer than anyone would think reasonable.Christian J. Chuba , Sep 15 2020 12:44 utc | 3
Btw a lot of these "journalists" in Europe in particular openly self-identify to "the left" or even as socialists and communists or "greens". So much for ideology as some kind of solution: entirely worthless and superficial.But CNN has and will continue to repeat the allegations as fact, so it's mission accomplished for the deep state. As another poster said on this board about manufacturing consent: "It is important to discuss the story, not its credibility, the more the discussion, the more the reaction and the more it reinforces the narrative."vk , Sep 15 2020 12:54 utc | 4
Just for laughs, I looked at the reviews of Gordon Chang's book, 'The Coming Economic Collapse of China' to see if I could figure out the reasoning and one of the reviewers said that China weakens because they lack a free press to hold their govt accountable. I had a good laugh at that one.There's an objective explanation for that.Nathan Mulcahy , Sep 15 2020 12:56 utc | 5
In the 1920s (or 30s), far-rightist Karl Popper coined the concept of systematic manipulation of "public opinion". This would become a hallmark of Western Civilization in the post-war. The public opinion theory states that the masses don't have an opinion for themselves or, if they have, it is sculpting/flexible. The dominant classes can, therefore, guide the masses like a shepherd, to its will.
Friedrich von Hayek - a colleague of Popper and father of British neoliberalism (the man behind Thatcher) - then developed on the issue, by proposing the institutionalization of public opinion. He proposed a system of three or four tiers of intellectuals which a capitalist society should have. The first tier is the capitalist class itself, who would govern the entire world anonymously, through secret meetings. These meetings would produce secret reports, whose ideas would be spread to the second tier. The second tier is the academia and the more prominent politicians and other political leaderships. The third tier is the basic education teachers, who would indoctrinate the children. The fourth tier is the MSM, whose job is to transform the ideas and opinions of the first tier into "common sense" ("public opinion").
Therefore, it's not a case where the Western journalists are being fooled. Their job was never to inform the public. When they publish a lie about, say, Iran trying to kill an American ambassador in South Africa, they are not telling a lie in their eyes: they are telling an underlying truth through one thousand lies. The objective here is to convince ("teach") the American masses it is good for the USA if Iran was invaded and destroyed (which is a truth). They are like the modern Christian God, who teach its subjects the Truth through "mysterious ways".It is an insult to the noble profession, to call what the mainstream media in the west, especially in the USA do, journalism. In my opinion what they do is propaganda and stenography on behalf of those who are in power. I am not sure who coined the term but "presstitution" is not a bad attempt at describing their profession.Gerhard , Sep 15 2020 13:07 utc | 6
Unfortunately they have been amazingly successful in brainwashing people. One current example, from numerous ones that could be cited, is the public's opinion on Julian Assange. .
While the western corporate media lie on a continuous basis - and that has the predictable effect - what is more insidious is not these acts of commissions ( meaning lies), but their acts of omission (meaning excluding or deemphasizing important contextual information) leading people to make the wrong conclusions. NPR in the US is an excellent example of such presstitution.
What I am saying is nothing new to the bar flies here. But I am extremely distressed when I see how poorly informed (propagandized, brainwashed) the vast majority of the people I know are. Let's say a decade ago, ideological polarization was the main reason why it was so difficult to have an open discussion on important issues the US. Today it has become even more difficult because, thanks to the success of the presstitutes, people also have different sets of "facts". And most alarmingly, after successfully creating a readership who believe in alternative "facts", the mainstream presstitutes are moving on to creating a logic-free narrative. Examples include Assad supposedly gassing his people when he was winning (even though that was guaranteed to produce western intervention against him). A more recent example is the Navalny affair. Sadly, very sadly, way too many people are affected.Hi, thanks, and sorry, but: why does nobody look behind the curtain?DG , Sep 15 2020 13:30 utc | 7
Why are the US promoting conflict with China, with Russia? Why are they beating Europe, maybe with the intention to destroy it? Why is a new civil war in the US promoted?
Are these random developments of history? Are laws of history behind that?
NO!! Surely not!
Normal (geopolitically interested) people would think: against China it is better to come together and unite, at least US & Europe, but eventually Russia included. For instance take the population of these three together: far less than China's.
If something is going against the common sense, then there should be a reason behind. This reason I recommend You, with due respect, to find - and to uncover the plan.
Journalism in the US is so superficial, it is a drop above the uppermost wavy comb. Not worth to pay attention to it.
The actual demand is to understand and to show the forces playing deep underwater.
And to preview where these forces are determined to strike against.
Kind regards, GerhardThey are all Judith Miller now.morongobill , Sep 15 2020 13:39 utc | 8Like the famed slogan of septic tank pumpers, the Gray Lady's masthead should read, "Your shit is our bread and butter!"ptb , Sep 15 2020 13:53 utc | 9Yep. We're into some pretty overt 1984 territory now... It's really a shame.Richard Steven Hack , Sep 15 2020 14:37 utc | 10Gareth Porter's latest on "Russian hacking"...Hoarsewhisperer , Sep 15 2020 14:52 utc | 11
Dark Web Voter Database Report Casts New Doubts on Russian Election Hack Narrative
A new report showing that US state-level voter databases were publicly available calls into question the narrative that Russian intelligence "targeted" US state election-related websites in 2016.
The problem with these sorts of accusations about "state-sponsored" hacking is they assume that because a target has some connection to a state or some political activity that it means the hackers are "nation-state". In reality, personal identification information (PII) is a commodity on the black market, along with intellectual property - and *any* hacker will target *any* such source of PII. So the mere fact that it is an election year, and that voting organizations are loaded with PII, makes them an obvious target for any and every hacker.
"Oregon's chief information security officer, Lisa Vasa, told the Washington Post in September 2017 that her team blocks 'upwards of 14 million attempts to access our network every day."'
This is the usual ridiculous claim from almost every organization. They treat every Internet packet that hits their firewall as being an "attempt to access" the network (or worse, a "breach" - which it is not.) Which is technically true, but would only be relevant if they had *no* firewall - a setup which no organization runs these days. By definition, 99.99999% of those attempts are random mass scans of a block of IP addresses by either a hacker or some malware on someone else's machine - or even a computer security researcher attempting to find out how many sites are vulnerable.Sakineh Bagoom , Sep 15 2020 14:54 utc | 12"It just has not been proved to a level of certainty that satisfies me," Gen. Frank McKenzie, commander of the U.S. Central Command, told NBC News. McKenzie oversees U.S. troops in Afghanistan.
Barflies should write Gen Frank McKenzie inside the back cover of their diaries, and count the days until we hear of/from him again. I've a feeling he's crossed a line and knows precisely what he's doing and why. Imo, the Swamp has just been put on notice.Posted by: vk | Sep 15 2020 12:54 utc | 4juliania , Sep 15 2020 15:12 utc | 13
In the 1920s (or 30s), far-rightist Karl Popper coined the concept of "public opinion".
vk, I can't find anything regarding this coinage. Could you please provide a link.
Wiki is specially devoid of it and it goes back to 16 century.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Public_opinion The term public opinion was derived from the French opinion publique which was first used in 1588 by Michel de Montaigne in the second edition of his EssaysThank you, b. In this world of illusion that mainstream press provides it is forgivable that we cannot even convince members of our own families that are dear to us of the underlying truths behind what these masters of deception continue to print. Surely they only do so because livelihoods are threatened, and the public perceptions are reaching a critical point where belief in what they write, read by the diminishing numbers of faithful few, reaches a pinnacle of perception and spills chaotically down into a watershed of realization.vk , Sep 15 2020 15:13 utc | 14
I remember when we were told what happens on the top floor of the New York Times. It opened my eyes. And perhaps here also, b is providing a chink through which we may glimpse what is happening in military circles in fields of operation where facts collide with fiction:"We have had more indirect fire attacks around and against our bases the first half of this year than we did the first half of last year," Gen. Frank McKenzie, the commander of the U.S. Central Command, said. "Those attacks have been higher."
McKenzie's comments came just hours after he announced the United States would be cutting its footprint in Iraq by almost half by the end of September, with about 2,200 troops leaving the country.@ Posted by: Sakineh Bagoom | Sep 15 2020 14:54 utc | 12Kooshy , Sep 15 2020 15:36 utc | 18
On Hayek's "tiering", google "IHS model" ("pyramid of social change") and his book "The Intellectuals and Socialism".
On Popper's conception of "public opinion", see "The Open Society and Its Enemies" (1945). Yes, the term itself is not Popper's invention - he never claimed to have done so. But he gave it a "twist", and we can say nowadays every Western journalist's conception of "public opinion" is essentially Popper's.Why do swallow their bullshit?Sakineh Bagoom , Sep 15 2020 15:50 utc | 20
because on matters related to Iran, China and Russia, they are not independent, there is no real difference between the two camps in US, Biden' foreign policy which is endorsed and supported by NYT and WP is not that different than Trump's, if not more radical. There is no free press in US, as matter of fact, as long as this United Oligarchy of America exist there will be no free press.OK, I admit it. I read this rag, just because Paul Pillar posts there. And yes, there is an "Iran derangement" syndrome in US, where people go to sleep and dream Iran. They wake up from wet dream of bloody Iranian babies, asking, have we sanctioned Iran today? https://responsiblestatecraft.org/2020/09/14/when-it-comes-to-iran-how-many-failures-is-enough-for-pompeo/jayc , Sep 15 2020 16:01 utc | 22
As well, this fake news propaganda barrage continues in the context of determined censorship of alternative media and social media - a campaign which has been largely promoted by the liberal intelligentsia in the US, in the name of reducing "fake news." Having to live within an ever-widening swamp of utter BS is wearying and mind-numbing - also to the point, one may assume.Kooshy , Sep 15 2020 16:19 utc | 23Posted by: Nathan Mulcahy | Sep 15 2020 12:56 utc | 5Noirette , Sep 15 2020 16:59 utc | 31
Yes, I agree, IMO/observation, the US Government, the political parties and their supportive media are rapidly ideologically polarizing their constituencies to two hard entrenched ideological camps (which as you say has become hard shelled impenetrable). Except on one common ideological point, which almost all the population has been and is being brain washed as young as first grade, this common used term, which shield you from needing to investigate or form any other opinion is: US has always been, is and will be a "force for good" by its constitution, no matter what she has done or will do. This sentence when fully believed and carved in one' mind from childhood is very difficult to erase and crack. These two ideologically opposing camps about 70% of the population will not want to hear any fact or not, other than what they are told and believed all their life.Re. K. Popper and topic above:Biswapriya Purkayast , Sep 15 2020 17:16 utc | 33
"Unlike utopian engineering, piecemeal social engineering must be "small scale," Popper said, meaning that social reform should focus on changing one institution at a time. Also, whereas utopian engineering aims for lofty and abstract goals (for example, perfect justice, true equality, a higher kind of happiness), piecemeal social engineering seeks to address concrete social problems (for example, poverty, violence, unemployment, environmental degradation, income inequality). It does so through the creation of new social institutions or the redesign of existing ones. These new or reconfigured institutions are then tested through implementation and altered accordingly and continually in light of their effects. Institutions thus may undergo gradual improvement overtime and social ills gradually reduced. Popper compared piecemeal social engineering to physical engineering. Just as physical engineers refine machines through a series of small adjustments to existing models, social engineers gradually improve social institutions through "piecemeal tinkering." In this way, "[t]he piecemeal method permits repeated experiments and continuous readjustments" (Open Society Vol 1., 163).
Only such social experiments, Popper said, can yield reliable feedback for social planners. In contrast, as discussed above, social reform that is wide ranging, highly complex and involves multiple institutions will produce social experiments in which it is too difficult to untangle causes..."
So Top-Down with a vengeance, but softly, softly, hunting for 'good results', for what and how these are defined is left out entirely, and who exactly runs the process...? (Btw China sorta follows this approach with 'social experiments' gathering data that is analysed etc. to improve governance.)Don't forget that the only time the Amerikastani Empire's warmongering imperialist media called Trump "presidential" was when he launched missiles at Syria on false pretences in support of al Qaeda.David G , Sep 15 2020 17:16 utc | 34The statement by praetor McKenzie probably won't do much to remove the "Russian bounties" tale from the received Beltway belief structure, where it lodged immediately upon publication, any more than earlier refutations, or its inherent implausibility, did. I see the bounties regularly referred to by Dems and Dem-adjacent media as established fact.conspiracy-theorist , Sep 15 2020 18:04 utc | 37
In the same light, it's worthwhile to read the Politico article on the alleged Iranian designs on the purse princess and try to spot other fictions included as supposedly factual background, some qualified as being American assertions, but others presented as undisputed fact, such as:
- Trump's version of the almost-happened retaliation after Iran downed a U.S. drone
- that the attack that killed a U.S. "contractor" in Iraq that started last winter's U.S./Iran tit-for-tat was "by an Iranian-allied militia"
- Soleimani was responsible for the death of numerous U.S. troops
- Soleimani plotted to hire a Mexican drug cartel to kill the Saudi ambassador in Washington (remember that one? a blast from the past)
This new one about the plot to get the ambassador in Pretoria may be too trivial to get sustained attention, but it will show up as background in some future Politico article or the like, joining the rest in the Beltway's version of reality, which at this point is made almost entirely of these falsehoods encrusting on each other, decade after decade, creating the phony geopolitical mindscape these people live in.
Mere factual refutation – even from otherwise establishment-approved sources – won't remove these barnacles. For instance, in February the NY Times itself published a debunking of the initial account that it was an Iran-backed Shia militia, as opposed to Salafist I.S.-affiliated forces, that killed that U.S. contractor last December. But the good (if delayed) reporting is forgotten; the lie persists. The same fate awaits McKenzie's dismissal of the Russian bounties nonsense.The thoughtful reader would at this point stop and ponder. "Fake News About Iran, Russia, China Is U.S. Journalism's Daily Bread". I agree with this statement. But not just U.S. Journalism. Minimally U.K. Journalism is on-board, if not tutoring the Yanks in the art of Journalism. And then there is Europe herself, she too has armies of Journalists and many Journals. They too mostly fake around in general.vinnieoh , Sep 15 2020 18:24 utc | 40
Now then, that leave Journalism in "Iran, Russia, China". It is fine trait to root for underdogs but Journalism in these states is also subject to a highly controlled and managed environment. It is disingenuous to ignore these facts.
Given this congregation of "fakers", worldwide, it is very reasonable to question the very "fight" that these "fakers" keep telling us is on between the "adversaries".Good to see so many being able to name the operation of the official narrative. It serves also another purpose, witnessed by one of the most consequential actions of all, the wanton abandonment of international law and accountability - the GWOT and the launching of same in Afghanistan and Iraq. That other purpose is to create cover for those, elected in our name, to avoid responsibility.karlof1 , Sep 15 2020 18:34 utc | 41
"Who knew?" asked the soulless Rumsfeld. And the refrain returned from the hollowed out halls of the Greatest Democracy On Earth (tm) - "We were misled!", "Look it says so right there in the official narrative, REMEMBER?" But the misleaders are never rounded up and never face any consequences, cause truth be told all that voted for the AUMF belong in the pokey. And the congressional class of '02-'03 would do the same thing all over again, 'cause the narrative's got their back.Despite the future grimness predicted by 1984 , the ability and effectiveness of Media Structures to openly lie and thus herd the public to embrace the preferred Narrative hasn't turned out quite the way Orwell thought it might. Former authoritarian blocs learned the hard way that it's better to tell their citizens the truth and actively engage them in governance, while the Anglo-Imperial powers have gone in the opposite direction, thus the question why? IMO, the longstanding Narrative related to the mythical Dream has greatly eroded in the face of Reality, while at the same time the Rentier Class and the Duopoly it controls needs to try and obfuscate what it's doing. And thus we've seen the rise of BigLie Media to be used for the purpose of Divide and Rule. There're numerous works detailing how and why; two of the more important are Manufacturing of Consent and J is for Junk Economics . Part of the overall process of dumbing-down populations is the deliberate destruction of the educational process, particularly in the areas of philosophy and political-economy/history, which are essentially connected as one when considering the History of Ideas or a sub-area like the Philosophy of Science.Steve , Sep 15 2020 18:59 utc | 43
Such a dumbing-down of a nation's populous can be measured, the USSR and its Warsaw Bloc being the most evident, but also The Inquisition and its affect on the advancement of science within the regions it ruled, and the inward turning of China during the Ming Dynasty which allowed for its subjugation by Western forces beginning in the 16th Century. Most recently, this is evident in China's passing the Outlaw US Empire in terms of geoeconomics and thus overall geopolitical power. An explanation for India's inability to match China's development can be found in its refusal to do away with its semi-feudal caste system and not educate its masses so they can become a similar collective dynamo as in China. At the beginning of his brief tenure, JFK noted the Knowledge Gap that existed between a USSR that was nearing its intellectual heights (although that wasn't known then) and the USA whose educational system effectively excluded @60% of students from having the opportunity to advance. There would never have been a Dot.Com economy without JFK's initiative to improve educational outcomes. There seems to be a notion within the Outlaw US Empire's elite that an well educated populace presents a danger to their rule and they can get by using AI and Robotics to further their future plans. Here I'd refer such thinkers to the lessons provided by the failure of Asimov's Galactic Empire in his Foundation series of books--particular their reliance on AI, robotics, dumbing-down the populace to the point where no one recalls how atomics functioned. The sort of balance sheet being constructed by the Fed cannot repair or replace crumbling infrastructure or train the engineers needed to perform the work.
So, what continual BigLie Media lies tell us is the continued downward spiral of the West's intellectual abilities will continue while an East that values the Truth and Discovery moves on to eclipse it, mainly because the West has stopped trying, thinking it's found a better way based on the continual amassing of Debt, which is seen as wealth on their balance sheets. Ultimately, the West thinks the one person holding all the assets as the winner of its Zero-sum Monopoly Game is a better outcome than having millions of people sharing the winnings of a Win-Win system that promotes the wellbeing of all. I can tell you now which philosophy will triumph, but you all ought to be capable of reasoning that outcome.After a sound and an in-depth analysis, b sometimes confounds me with his credulity. Take this sentence for example: "Why do U.S. journalist presume that the agencies and anonymous officials who work under him are more truthful in their uttering than the man himself is hard to understand. Why do swallow their bullshit?" Of course there is no daylight between the US, and indeed the whole Western governments, and its Press. Other than few independent blog site such as this, every media outlet is in the service of its home government or foreign sponsors. Only born-suckers take the corporate media at face value. Modern journalism is nothing but an aggressive propaganda racket.
Mark2 , Sep 15 2020 19:13 utc | 45You only have to look at who owns the media and who their close friends are, to understand why the media says what it says or lies what it lies ! It's an industry promoting the elites self-interest, creating fictioous enemy countries to feed the arms industry and create US domestic mass paranoia. The Israeli lobby groups are at the wheel of the whole dam clown car.chet380 , Sep 15 2020 19:45 utc | 46Even more admiration for coining 'Vichy Press'.uncle tungsten , Sep 15 2020 20:39 utc | 49Biden is outed in his coup machinations by Fort Russ a tale told with a bit of media spin.Josh , Sep 15 2020 20:40 utc | 50Using lies (bearing false witness) to cause murder and theft are not exactly a new phenomenon. These 'groups of individuals', which are employing these fabricated deceptions, are doing nothing less than trying to commit murder and theft.Josh , Sep 15 2020 20:41 utc | 51These acts happen to constitute real crimes, or at least attempted criminal acts, in reality.Yeah, Right , Sep 15 2020 22:07 utc | 53No doubt the two propaganda streams will merge until we will be told that the CIA now believes that Iran will attempt plausible deniability by funnelling the money through Putin, who will offer it to the Taliban by way of a bounty on the Ambassador's head.spindoctor , Sep 15 2020 23:18 utc | 56
The CIA's wet dream: the Taliban does it, Putin arranged it, but it was all Iran's fault, leading to:
A) infinite occupation of the poppy fie.... sorry, Afghanistan
B) even more sanctions on Russia
C) war with Iran
What's not to like?Posted by: vk | Sep 15 2020 12:54 utc | 4spindoctor , Sep 15 2020 23:25 utc | 57
In the 1920s (or 30s), far-rightist Karl Popper coined the concept of "public opinion".
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Crystallizing_Public_Opinion published 1923.Posted by: vk | Sep 15 2020 12:54 utc | 4vk , Sep 16 2020 1:12 utc | 58
From the link just cited:
'"Public opinion", according to Bernays, is an amorphous group of judgments which are not well elaborated even in the head of a single average individual. He extracts a quotation from Wilfred Trotter, which states that this average man has many strong convictions whose origin he can't explain (Instincts of the Herd in Peace and War, p. 36). People's minds have "logic-proof compartments" which must be approached by means beyond the rational. (pp. 61–68).'@ Posted by: spindoctor | Sep 15 2020 23:18 utc | 56ptb , Sep 16 2020 1:35 utc | 59
Yes, I forgot to mention this very important book. If I'm not mistaken (and I may be), Popper got the term from Bernays.
Popper, von Hayek... these guys are the fathers of neoliberalism. I'm not mentioning backyard intellectuals here. They shaped the West as we know it today and, if you're a Westerner and wants to understand the civilization you live in, you have to know what they formulated.
Just to clear that off: I don't agree with Popper's (or Bernays, for that matter) conception on "public opinion". The Marxist conception of ideology is much more complete and precise scientifically.@karlof1 41uncle tungsten , Sep 16 2020 4:34 utc | 61
Speaking of education (although of science/tach, rather than critical thinking)...
Add in the migration of top-level educated individuals. In the US, an underdeveloped primary/secondary school system creates room at the university/grad level to absorb talent from the rest of the world. For many years, this was a source of competitive advantage -- imported human capital is better than home grown, because if you import, you take it away from someone else. Clever!
It was not that big a deal for the US if social mobility of native born lower and middle classes was stifled somewhat. (and I would say it still would not be a big deal if the resources of the country were not so grossly mismanaged/wasted/stolen).
But in the current century, or certainly the decade now ending, China alone can fill every US grad school science/tech program and still have people to spare for itself. Other parts of the world are right up there as well.
And then you have computers. Sometime between 2000 and 2010, computers became pretty much cheap enough that you could give one to a every kid, even in families of limited means. Provided the primary/secondary education system is there to support it, a country could develop as much tech talent as they had population. The first generation of kids whose childhood took place under this condition is now coming out of university - I would think vastly greater in numbers than any amount the US (or Euro) higher educational system can absorb. Should be a pretty serious shifting of gears in how human capital is distributed worldwide.
But none of this is about critical thinking. Few systems of organizing society actually promote that ... it tends to happen in spite of the organizing principles, rather than because of them. Nor are the most educated (regardless of country of origin) any less susceptible to the propaganda - if anything they are more so, due to the design of the message, because it is more important that they receive it. You want a book recommendation that talks about that, check out 'Disciplined Minds' by Jeff Schmidt (though perhaps with an overly pessimistic outlook -- people can recognize the reality he describes and deal with it... it is only the more naive/idealistic types who fall extra hard for the mythology and then find themselves in a conflict they can't handle). There are lots of other avenues to take too... about the psychology of self-discovery, discovery of self-vs-social-organism etc....Conspiracy-theorist #37Greg L , Sep 16 2020 6:12 utc | 62
Exactly that and yet we are constantly fed a diet from the bottom of the barrel. NYT? WAPO? They are rags. Gutter press peddling drivel. Surely there are more erudite and critical publications in this world than these USA drivel sheets. I am aware of good journalism in Switzerland and elsewhere but currently separted from a device adequate to translate and quote.
Thank you Conspiracy-theorist it I way past time we escaped the neverending story of BS + HATE.And this tidbit? Deep state is as deep state does... Trump Claims He Wanted To Assassinate Syrian President Assad, But Mattis Opposed Itvato , Sep 16 2020 7:49 utc | 63A propos fake news, John Helmer reports on the Navalny saga and was lately on the Gorilla radio podcast with Chris Cook to discuss the newest events. It's a one-hour-talk but very enjoyable listening to Helmer. You can also follow his reports on his blog Dances With Bears .vinnieoh , Sep 16 2020 12:55 utc | 64karlof1 | Sep 15 2020 18:34 utc | 41Edward , Sep 16 2020 13:05 utc | 65
Try this on for size. This is a conclusion I arrived at several decades ago, wrote about several times, but not recently.
Everything that was accomplished (albeit incompletely or moderately) through the New Deal and then the abortive Great Society absolutely spooked the oligarchy. Lifting much of the working class out of absolute wage slavery to the point where the next rung on Maslow's ladder was at least visible. And when it all culminated in the late 60's and early 70's with the Clean Air Act, Clean Water Act, the Surface Mining act, and various labor protection measures, the wealthy owner class decided the proles had gained too much power to influence "their" captive government.
The princes and barons of industry and finance were very open about their complaints. The advance of regulation on their ability to pollute and to exploit must stop or they would take their bundles of riches and go elsewhere. It is what Saint Ronny was ALL about. And so all that got fat and filthy rich during the real American Century took their wealth where regulation and labor fairness and justice didn't exist to continue their exorbitant profit taking.
And then they imported those cheap products here to wreak what was left of our industrial base and to impress on all of us that they remain the boss, the real power. Drive down wages, destroy pensions and safety nets and put US proles back into wage slavery. Remember the 80's and 90's when Wal-Mart basically told established and storied US manufacturers "either you produce the goods we want for what our Asian suppliers can make them for, or you're finished." And that is exactly what happened. Wal-Mart was just the vanguard, it is now ubiquitous. Another aspect of this assault was forcing us proles into the stock market through our pensions and retirement funds so as to make us all sympathetic to de-regulation - so as not to hurt OUR bottom line. Many labor unions became just a sick symbiosis with the industries they "served."
Incomplete and observational, I am not erudite or lettered, but I think it is an accurate narrative.There is a curious schizophrenia where the U.S. press will treat presidential claims about foreign affairs as a sacred truth but treat claims denying adultery, such as in the Lewinski affair, as dismissible.Geoff , Sep 16 2020 13:20 utc | 66Living in the USA (Steve Miller classic) has always seemed to me about dealing with falsehood and deception. US highschool seemed like he time for me when the formidable pressure to conform became completely nonsensical, perhaps because it was so utterly cruel, but also because it seemed untruthful. You basically were required to accept modes if behavior and thought that seemed alien to human behavior, but were presented as the sine quo non of how to be. How to succeed, how to live. It seems to me that if you were attempting to retain truthfulness, this conformity was rife with logical fallacies of every sort which if you tried to deal with them, or confront them, you were ostracized or at worst outcast.Old and Grumpy , Sep 16 2020 13:31 utc | 67
In the many years since, it seems like everything else, once a person adopts untruthful behavior, it is next to impossible to change course, so you deal with all kinds of people who have doubled down on their personal deceptions. Marriages based on financial success come to mind, and are like any deception, the cause of incredible dis ease and misey.
There is a philosophical concept I came upon called parrhesia that Foucault gives a fantastic series of lectures on which can be found by searching the web, that investigates the perils implicit in telling truth to falsehood, and the many disasters and tragedies that have befallen human kind in the attempts to do so.
I've come to think that humans by nature are basically incapable of avoiding whatever it is that is "truth." Because over and over life seems to present situations that are the unswervingly the same to everyone. Youth and aging, for example, and the end result never varies, like illness, death, and dying. And everyone has their own similar story navigating the human predicaments and facing an inalterable "truth," which might be in this example, death.
My wonder as I observe life as I age, is what is the damage done to those not only who try their honest best to remain truthful, but what is the damage done to those who cannot escape an adopted untruth and refuse to let go of it. I suppose in this moment of history, you need only look at pandemic, wildfires, and conflicts to see how far human beings have digressed from an Eden. But there must be a purpose to it all? Like, trying to cling to any kind of integrity.You think international fake news is just a Trump thing? Just off the top of my head we have thins like Tonkin Bay, Kuwait babies being massacred by Iraqi troops, my personal favorite Iraqi weapons of mass destruction, and a multiple of mean Assads killing their people with poison. That is just a bipartisan few. We have one political party, who serves the deep state. The deep state serves the interests of Wall Street and more importantly the Rothschild world banking system. Give the spooks a lot of credit they let us have two "choices" while controlling both. Think of it as a neo fascism kinda thing that ironically finances the anti fascists. The press is just a means to an end. Assume everything is an agenda, and read the independents for some actual thought. I may not agree with you all the time, but I do love you MoA. Thank you for all your work.ptb , Sep 16 2020 14:02 utc | 68@64 vinnieohWilliam Gruff , Sep 16 2020 14:12 utc | 69
'spooked oligarchy...reforms..culminated in ..70s'
Yep. When committed Dem's go off on Trump, it's deeply felt but kindof a ritual rant. Bring Ralph Nader into the conversation, just mention him in passing, and the response becomes live! Betrayal, danger of being shown up again!Old and Grumpy @67 has a good point. Anyone suggesting that fake news is in any way related to Trump being President are big parts of the problem for why fake news persists in the first place. Suggesting that it is because of Trump, and thus implying that the fake news will go away when Trump does, is either profoundly ignorant, or profoundly deceitful, though probably both. Trump ranting about fake news exposed the problem and forced it into the public discourse. Those rants did not create the problem.ptb , Sep 16 2020 14:36 utc | 70Re: @Geoff 66William Gruff , Sep 16 2020 15:33 utc | 71
"You basically were required to accept modes if behavior and thought that seemed alien to human behavior ... ... forced to double down"
I had short but deeply influential conversation right out of college with a recruiter/HR manager from Raytheon, of all places. He talked about exactly what you said. He spoke, in a hypothetical third person, about a mid-career guy with a mortgage and family who finds themselves questioning the defense industry. How that isn't the best place to be in, mentally. I changed my career plans that day, forever thankful for the encounter.
However, regarding people being able to avoid unpleasant realities, he was of the opinion that for most people, it is possible to do so. Even beneficial. (Except of course for the recipients of his company's products. I didn't say that but I think he figured out that I was thinking it). The issue, from the point of view of running an effective organization, is what happens if the doubters and believers start to mix? Part of his assigned task was to simply keep out people curious enough to ask too many questions. That's one of the "benefits" of really polarizing politics too.Geoff @66:J Swift , Sep 16 2020 16:12 utc | 74
"My wonder as I observe life as I age, is what is the damage done to those not only who try their honest best to remain truthful, but what is the damage done to those who cannot escape an adopted untruth and refuse to let go of it."
That's what modern pharmaceuticals are for, and why one in six Americans (officially) are prescribed them. If we include the numbers of Americans who self-medicate with alcohol and/or grey/black market pharmaceuticals, then the proportion would be a bit (quite a bit) larger. People who succeed at being truthful (mostly to themselves) are not confronted with cognitive dissonance mind-quakes; however, such individuals are confronted with experiencing the retch reflex when consuming mass media.
Is being truthful vs embracing the lies then half-dozen of one and six of the other? I find satisfactory peace of mind from being truthful and simply avoiding the primary vector of deception; the mass media. Noble individuals like our host and some of the posters here will slog through that vile cesspool of lies and fish out the little nuggets of truth that leak out. It is selfish of me to leave such dirty work to others, but at least I am not hermetically isolated on a mountain somewhere.Kooshy @ 23Noirette , Sep 16 2020 16:32 utc | 75
An interesting thought. I have long had the feeling that a large part of the obviously orchestrated drive to almost define both of the two US parties with really incredibly unimportant issues like bathroom preferences were designed to split the voters as equally as possible, so that to swing elections one had only to control the votes of a very small number of tie breakers. I still think this is likely true, but I do think you make an important point that a lot can be learned about what is truly important to the PTB by reflecting on the topics that aren't being argued over.
Compare the "two" US political parties, and you will note that while they seem to be getting ever more extreme and irreconcilable and quasi-religious in their differences, these differences are always on the periphery. Both parties are being indoctrinated with certain common beliefs they will take for granted because they are never talked about -- because these points are not allowed to be in contention. So while even something like climate change can be a big divider (no worries, there's money to be made on both sides of that issue, and means of control); but you will never hear debate about
1. America is the greatest ever!
2. America is always and unquestionably a force for good, and even it's proven bad things (kidnapping, rendition, and torture programs) are done "for the greater good."
3. Unbridled capitalism is the only way, and the privatization and unwinding of any vestiges of social programs, like education, social security, and even utilities and infrastructure, is always a good thing deserving of priority.
4. Individualism is the best, if not only, way. To be a hero you must strike alone against the bad guys/the system/the government; someone who rallies others, causes forces to be gathered and united, unionized, whatever are discouraged or ignored.
5. "Leadership" in the affairs of others around the world is American right, responsibility, and destiny. Having the largest, almost entirely offensively oriented military on earth is essential; and having it, we must use it to get our money's worth.
6. Omnipresent "intelligence" services equal safety and are absolutely required for life to be normal. I'm sure there are other examples of "universally agreed" doctrines in the US, but these are some that leap out.These crazy MSM lies Anecdote. Last Sat (Geneva, Switz.) I spoke to 20 ppl whom I know somewhat, all know I like to discuss news etc. I said, weird news this week, making no mention of Navalny. 18/20 believed Putin poisoned Navalny and brought it up spontaneously! There is something so appealing and narratively 'seductive' about spies and 'opponents' (Skripal ) and mysterious poisons used by evil doers etc. that fiction just flows smoothly into fact or whatever is 'real.'karlof1 , Sep 16 2020 17:02 utc | 78
I had to mention Assange myself to most, but there the reaction was very mixed, most thought Assange was being persecuted, or it was 'not right', and took this story seriously in one way or another - 4 ppl claimed not to know the latest news. Here, NGOs, Leftists and Others have made demands for him to be offered asylum in Switz, so he has been front page.
Besides that (I'm always interested in from-the-ground view-points, experiences, so post some myself) what is going on is monopoly consolidation:
Mega MSM in cahoots with the MIC, Big Pharma, Big Agri, Finance, and so on. Corporations joining up their positions bit by bit while also competing in some ways, bribing and owning the Pols. who are front-men and women tasked with providing a lot of drama, manufactured agitation, etc., which in turn is fodder for the MSM, etc.
Overall, the most important sector to watch is the GAFAM, 1, the reign of the middle men is close at hand (control information, both the channels and the content, and commerce up to a point.) All this leaves out energy considerations, another vital topic left aside.
1. google apple facebook amazon microsoftptb @59--jared , Sep 16 2020 17:16 utc | 79
Thanks for your reply! I've touched on the topic of human capital and its development occasionally here, positing it's the #1 asset of all nations. Those nations who neglect to develop their own human capital are bound to become deficient when it comes to basic comparative advantages with other nations, particularly as political-economy shifts from being materialistic to knowledge-based; thus Pepe Escobar agreeing wholeheartedly with my comment about India. (He added this article to his FB timeline and I posted my comment there.)
From 1999-2003, I was involved in developing distance learning platforms for the rapidly advancing ability to learn outside of a school's four walls. The other educators I worked with and myself had great hopes for the virtual classroom and what it might do to aide both teachers and students. At the time we thought this development would provide a great opportunity for the third member of the educational team--parents--to play a greater role in the process since active parental involvement was proven to generate better student outcomes. But for that to be properly implemented, equitable funding for all school districts became an even greater issue than it was already. This issue highlighted the huge problems related to financing education at a moment when BushCo Privatizers began to seriously threaten what was already in place. And that problem has only worsened, the vast disparities being very evident thanks to COVID-forced distance learning. The primary reason good teachers can't be retained is the entire system's a massive Clusterfuck. And computers aren't substitutes for even poor teachers. And parents are even more aloof from becoming involved in the process than ever before.
The dumbing-down I mention is now entering its third generation. The educational structure needs to be completely refitted nationally, but I wouldn't give that task to any of the fuckwits employed by the past three administrations--Yes, I'm arguing education needs to be a completely federal program instead of the 53 different school systems in states and territories; and yes, I'm aware of the pitfalls and potential corruption that poses, which is a microcosm of all the problems at the federal level of government. This problem is yet another very basic reason why the Duopoly and its backers need to be ousted from government and kept as far away as possible as the structure is torn down and rebuilt--The USA will never be great again until that is done.@ J Swift | Sep 16 2020 16:12 utc | 74karlof1 , Sep 16 2020 17:40 utc | 80
I suggest that the reason that the media focus on the ridiculous is to convince the public that there is nothing important happening - except where the MSM wants the participation of the public as in with anti-Russia, anti_China, anti-Socialism, etc. Good to get the public participation directed at harmless targets.
They've got to fill the papers with something. The public must be kept warm, comfortable, semi-comatose, watching cat videos...
Last thing anybody wants is the involvement of the public, they will only screw everything-up or try anyway.vinnieoh @64--robin , Sep 16 2020 17:56 utc | 81
Thanks for your reply! Your explanation sadly is correct, but it was put into motion prior to Reagan becoming POTUS. The tools used to undo the New Deal were put into place before FDR became POTUS. And FDR's unwillingness to prosecute those who attempted to overthrow his government provided that faction to infiltrate government and eventually attempt to undo the good that was done prior to WW2. When looked at closely, American society was generally quite Liberal in the positive aspects of that term and during the Depression was becoming ever more Collectivist with the war advancing that even further. At the war's end, it was paramount for the forces taking control of the nation to push the public to the right and away from its collectivist proclivities. Where we find ourselves today thus is not an accident of history but an engineered outcome. You may recall voices on the Right accusing Liberals and their organizations of engaging in Social Engineering. Those accusations were projections since it was actually forces on the Right that were maneuvering society to the Right while assiduously applying the principle of Divide and Rule to create a condition where they would be immune from political challenge, which is where we are now.
A few understand this ugly truth and how we arrived here. What's missing is scholarship that links the changes that began in the 1870s with today's situation. Yes, there're good examinations of various pieces of the overall puzzle. But it appears that only Hudson and those in his small circle have figured it out; yet, they haven't produced a complete history that encapsulates it all. And for us to have a realistic chance to undo what's been done, we need to know how it all transpired.Antonym @ 60Curmudgeon , Sep 16 2020 18:13 utc | 82
"There are big differences between Trump and Biden regarding their foreign policies: Trump is hard on Xi-China and soft on Putin Russia, while Biden is the reverse."
I don't share your view. The current administration's foreign policy is very much aligned with that of past administrations and the diplomatic circus surrounding the Skripal affair alone is evidence that nobody is soft on Russia.
What differs, however, is the presentation. Trump is criticized (not praised) for being allegedly soft on Russia and Biden criticized for being allegedly soft on China. This clever trick ensures that just about everybody is onboard the bash-China-and-Russia train.
In a violently polarized society, with red-blue antagonism reaching ridiculous heights, people tend to act exclusively in contradiction to the cult figure they hate so much.
If a Trump hater hears the criticism that the president is too soft on Russia, he will readily grab the bash-Russia stick hoping to score a few hits on Trump. The same person's reaction to a criticism on Biden will be either indifference or angry denial. In either case, he will not be opposed to the bash-Russia nor the bash-China movement.
The dem hater's reaction is similar. Indifference to the soft-on-Russia claim (ie. no opposition to the bash-Russia movement) and active support for the China-bashing.The article and subsequent discussion brings to mind Dawkins discussion of Memes and Memetics. Not those pesky internet memes. The propaganda war is fierce, and almost without exception the people here are poking and prodding perhaps without being able to put the finger on the "EZ button". This is war, baby, so one thinks the following link may be useful:J Swift , Sep 16 2020 20:34 utc | 85
Wherein: " Ideally the virus of the mind being targeted will be overwritten with a higher fidelity, fecundity, and longevity memeplex in order to assure long term sustainability. When this is not practical, it is still possible to displace a dangerous memeplex, by creating a more contagious benign meme utilizing certain packaging, replication, and propagation tricks."
The lie is irrelevant, whether true or false, it must be believable, and it must successfully replicate.karlof1 @ 80lulu , Sep 16 2020 20:58 utc | 86
You are right, the early FDR days were, in hindsight, one of the most important in setting the course of the US for the next century, and unfortunately Big Business won, taking us on a long, ugly road to the right. I agree this would be a most fascinating history book if some of those respected, genuinely knowledgeable people you often cite could collaborate on an opus.
Yes, most people do not know that the wide ranging labor laws implemented at that time were actually not meant to empower organized labor, but to limit it. Perhaps FDR thought it was the best he could do for the working class, but I tend to think it was more a case of him thinking that by outlawing general strikes, wildcat strikes, strikes in support of other unions, and setting up an NLRB with a lot of political control by business, the powers who had so recently let it be known they were ready to actively try to overthrow the government might be mollified. I think he feared the US was at the cusp of a revolution, and perhaps it was. Whether or not if would have been better had that been allowed to proceed is the big question.Anti-China activists funded by NED & Co make up all sorts of horrid stories online, which are then picked up by MSM and political NGOs to spoon feed world audiences/viewers. Viola, you have "fact-based" anti-China news!CitizenX , Sep 16 2020 21:11 utc | 87
Here is an example how an Uyghur activist in Canadian continue to her make-up-to-believe "1 million Uyghurs in concentration camp" is caught on Twitter red handed .
This is literally what these overseas Uyghur activists do all day. Putting a random caption on a video they ripped down from a medical worker's tiktok in China. And people believe it. They'd even believe if the follow up rebuttal is that this is a forced labour doctor.
Another one: There's a guy (Arslan Hidayat, Aussie Uighur) on Twitter who takes footage of ordinary people doing ordinary things, sets them in China and invents a fantastical and sinister scenario.
His twitter functions as the aggregator of fake anti-China propaganda from the past few years.Ed Bernays (Freuds Nephew)karlof1 , Sep 16 2020 21:34 utc | 88
Glad to see his name mentioned here. I've been saying for years here to watch the documentary - Century of the Self. If you want to learn about and understand America, its all here. Government, Corporations, Consumerism, Militarism, Deep State, Psychology, Individual selfishness and mental illness.https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eJ3RzGoQC4sj Swift @85--
Thanks for your reply! JK Galbraith in his American Capitalism: The Concept of Countervailing Power lamented what you recap in your 2nd paragraph and that there was thus no power capable of offsetting Big Business although one was sorely needed. As I wrote, some very sharp minds have written about small segments of the overall movement toward totalitarianism since the 1870s, Galbraith's 1952 book being one that's still worth reading.
Sep 12, 2020 | www.moonofalabama.org
psychohistorian , Sep 11 2020 16:05 utc | 2
The price for the worst tweet of the year goes to Paul Krugman .
In the real world the U.S. reacted to 9/11 by doing extremely bad and ridiculous things as well as this :In the days, weeks, and months immediately following the 9/11 attacks, Arab-Americans, South Asian-Americans, Muslim-Americans, and Sikh-Americans were the targets of widespread hate violence. Many of the perpetrators of these acts of hate violence claimed they were acting patriotically by retaliating against those responsible for 9/11.
Just after September 11, numerous Arabs, Muslims, and individuals perceived to be Arab or Muslim were assaulted, and some killed, by individuals who believed they were responsible for or connected to the attacks on the World Trade Center and Pentagon. The first backlash killing occurred four days after September 11.
Balbir Singh Sodhi was shot to death on September 15 as he was planting flowers outside his Chevron gas station. The man who shot Sodhi, Frank Roque, had told an employee of an Applebee's restaurant that he was "going to go out and shoot some towel heads." Roque mistakenly thought Sodhi was Arab because Sodhi, an immigrant from India, had a beard and wore a turban as part of his Sikh faith. After shooting Sodhi, Roque drove to a Mobil gas station a few miles away and shot at a Lebanese-American clerk. He then drove to a home he once owned and shot and almost hit an Afghani man who was coming out the front door. When he was arrested two hours later, Roque shouted, "I stand for America all the way."
The next two killings were committed by a man named Mark Stroman. On September 15, 2001, Stroman shot and killed Waquar Hassan, an immigrant from Pakistan, at Hassan's grocery store in Dallas, Texas. On October 4, 2001, Stroman shot and killed Vasudev Patel, an immigrant from India and a naturalized U.S. citizen, while Patel was working at his Shell station convenience store. A store video camera recorded the killing, helping police to identify Stroman as the killer. Stroman later told a Dallas television station that he shot Hassan and Patel because, "We're at war. I did what I had to do. I did it to retaliate against those who retaliated against us."
Beyond these killings, there were more than a thousand other anti-Muslim or anti-Arab acts of hate which took the form of physical assaults, verbal harassment and intimidation, arson, attacks on mosques, vandalism, and other property damage.
Instead of "calming prejudice" the GB Bush administration institutionalized hate crimes:First, in the weeks immediately following the September 11 attacks, the government began secretly arresting and detaining Arab, Muslim, and South Asian men. Within the first two months after the attacks, the government had detained at least 1,200 men.
Second, in November 2001, the Department of Justice began efforts to "interview" approximately 5,000 men between the ages of 18 and 33 from Middle Eastern or Muslim nations who had arrived in the United States within the previous two years on a temporary student, tourist, or business visa and were lawful residents of the United States. Four months later, the government announced it would seek to interview an additional 3,000 men from countries with an Al Qaeda presence.
Third, in September 2002, the government implemented a "Special Registration" program also known as NSEERS (National Security Entry-Exit Registration System), requiring immigrant men from 26 mostly Muslim countries to register their name, address, telephone number, place of birth, date of arrival in the United States, height, weight, hair and eye color, financial information and the addresses, birth dates and phone numbers of parents and any foreign friends with the government.
Besides all that a rather useless security theater was installed at U.S. airports which has costs many billions in lost time and productivity ever since. The Patriot Act was introduced which allowed for unlimited spying on private citizens. Wars were launched that were claimed to be justified by 9/11. These were "mass outbreaks of anti-Muslim sentiment and violence. Many were killed and maimed in them. People were tortured and vanished. All of this happened largely to applause of a majority of the U.S. people which were glued to 24 and dreamed of being "terrorist hunters".
Anyone with a functional memory knows that the U.S. reaction to 9/11 was anything but "pretty calm". It is ridiculous that Krugman is claiming that.Posted by b at 15:46 UTC | Comments (73)
I find it a bit humorous b that you are critical of Krugman for his 911 dementia when for years many of us finance types have railed about how morally corrupt the logic and thinking of Paul Krugman is.
Paul Krugman is to economics what Bernie Sanders has become for the purported "left" side of the "right wing" uni-party....a sheep dog for the easily led.
Paul Krugman is an acolyte for the God of Mammon/global private finance elite.
Clueless Joe , Sep 11 2020 16:11 utc | 3Red Ryder , Sep 11 2020 16:44 utc | 11
Paul is getting old. Looks like senile dementia isn't limited to Biden nowadays.Jackrabbit , Sep 11 2020 17:01 utc | 13
While spreading anger and hate toward Arab people, The Bush Administration rescued the many members of the Kingdom's family from all around the US and escorted their flights out of the US to safety in Saudi Arabia.
Distracting the public big time was Dick Cheney, VP, who insisted from the very next day that the plot to hit the Twin Towers was Saddam's plot.
So, the historical record and US response was skewed from the getgo. AQ and Bin Laden didn't concern the neocons. They wanted the US to go to Iraq again, and this time start a wide war that would spread to Syria and Lebanon and Iran.
It was easy times to spread fear and hate, and Cheney and the war mongers of CENTCOM were riding high. Americans were scared of all Arabs, all Sunnis, all Shiites, from anywhere. They were all the same in the public's mind. Enemies.
It was perfect and has led to 19 years of endless wars. Add ISIS and al Nusra and the Taliban and you have an endless soup of enemies.michaelj72 , Sep 11 2020 19:59 utc | 35
I'm coining a new term: "Empire apologist".
!!Hoarsewhisperer , Sep 11 2020 20:08 utc | 36
krugman is a terrible shill for the neo-cons and liberal-interventionists of the 21st century
at my age, I shouldn't really be surprised any more by what american "intellectuals" and "nobel prize winners" say about anything..... but I am.
He's neo-liberal interventionist moron of the first rank, and saying what he did actually normalizes the war mania and war-mongering which has become so staple in mainstream thought and the "think tanks" and is now practically part of the american DNA and "culture".
shame on krugmanRob , Sep 11 2020 20:08 utc | 37
It appears the Deep State has attacked the USA's people twice in two decades--on 911 and with the decision to let as many die as possible by deliberately not doing anything to mitigate the impact of COVID-19 and allowing the real economy to atrophy so even more will die in the long run.
Posted by: karlof1 | Sep 11 2020 19:40 utc | 34
Talking about tilting at windmills - I'll never forget Robert Fisk angrily pointing out that the Yankees knew where to find Al CIA-duh because they extended the cave complex at Tora Bora to help Al CIA-duh, equipped with 10,000 US Stinger Missiles, kick the Russians out of Afghanistan in the 1980s!!!
(The Yankees had to wait for 10+ years to invade Afghanistan because it takes that long for Stingers to pass their Use By date)Jen , Sep 11 2020 21:02 utc | 44
@michaelj72. "krugman is a terrible shill for the neo-cons and liberal-interventionists of the 21st century"
Actually, Paul Krugman was a strong and outspoken opponent of the Iraq War since early 2003 and possibly earlier. He was amongst the few mainstream liberal commentators to take that stand.uncle tungsten , Sep 11 2020 22:13 utc | 50
If MoA readers and commenters were to read the entire series of Krugman's tweets, six in all, they will see mention of how the Bush govt began exploiting the events of 11 September 2001 almost immediately. Though the example Krugman actually uses would make most people cringe at what it suggests about the bubble he lives in and how far removed it is from most people's lives and experiences, and his reference to a "horrible war" does not mention either Afghanistan or Iraq.
It has to be said that Twitter is not designed very well for the kind of informal conversational commentary that people often use it for. But then you would think Krugman would use something other than Twitter to discuss and compare 9/11 with the impact of COVID-19.
The real issue I have with Krugman's Tweet is that he is revising history and bending over backwards to apologise for Dubya in a way to criticise Donald Trump's performance as President.b " Anyone with a functional memory knows that the U.S. reaction to 9/11 was anything but "pretty calm". It is ridiculous that Krugman is claiming that. "Prof K , Sep 11 2020 22:15 utc | 51
Careful with that axe b, you are talking about Biden's chief economic adviser and likely appointee as Chair of the Fed. How does this look?
What could go wrong?From 2019, Krugman de facto admits he was wrong his whole life. What a tool.David G , Sep 11 2020 22:34 utc | 54
https://www.bloomberg.com/opinion/articles/2019-10-10/inequality-globalization-and-the-missteps-of-1990s-economicsEt Tu , Sep 11 2020 22:48 utc | 55
uncle tungsten | Sep 11 2020 22:13 utc | 50:
Reading Krugman's columns in 2016, I had a strong to overwhelming sense that this was a person revving up for a spot in Hillary's White House or cabinet. For some reason it isn't hitting me as strongly this time around – he may not have as close connections in Biden's circle – but it certainly would not be a surprise to see him take a turn through the media/government revolving door if Trump loses (though, fwiw, I don't think it will be a job at the Fed).Russ , Sep 11 2020 22:48 utc | 56
Yep. Pretty staggering how a few disgruntled ex-CIA contractors managed to, deliberately or not, help the US Gov't launch the biggest world war operation right under the noses of the brainwashed masses.
99% of Westerners still are clueless as to explaining the last 20 years in a broader geopolitical context.Prof K , Sep 11 2020 22:55 utc | 57
Posted by: Caliman | Sep 11 2020 22:15 utc | 52
#28: "The antiwar protests in the US were small and insignificant."
No they were not. Millions of people demonstrated against the planned war, in the US, in the UK, and around the world...
We mustn't forget how the vast majority of those who allegedly were anti-war suddenly went totally pro-war silent upon Obama coming in.
But that pales compared to the vile spectacle of all the self-alleged "anti-authoritarians", "anti-propagandists" "dissidents", who suddenly regard the government media as the literal voice of God, where their alleged God speaks of Covid.vk , Sep 12 2020 0:16 utc | 64
His book, End this Depression Now, is pretty weak. He has no theory of why the crash occurred. He critiques the austerity agenda but doesn't understand that government spending CAN create tax liabilities for capital down the road and eat into profits, thus blocking expanded investments and growth. Moronic libertarians hate Krugman just because they are right wing assholes who think, like fairies, that a free market without the state will work fine and self correct. Marx debunked this fairy tale thoroughly in Capital Volume 1, showing that, even if we start with the mythical free market of libertarian morons, capitalism will still operate according to the general law by which concentration and centralization lead to class polarization. In any case, in volume 3 of Capital, Marx develops his laws of crisis, showing that the cycles of expansion and depression under capitalism follow the movements of the rate of profit, which itself is determined by the ratio of the value of sunk capital in production technologies to the rate of exploitation (profits/wages). If the former rises more than the latter, the rate of profit sinks, along with investment, output and employment. Financial crises then set in.
The empirical evidence in the data bears out Marx's theory, not Krugman's dumb notion of aggregate demand, or the stupid libertarian focus on interest rates.uncle tungsten , Sep 12 2020 1:15 utc | 65
We could discuss here all day about the sociological subject of the American people's true positioning in the aftermath of 9/11. It would be, sincerely, a waste of time.
The important thing to grasp over this episode - from the point of view of History - is this: it was a strategic victory for al-Qaeda . The USA took the bait (all scripted?) and went into a quagmire in Iraq and Afghanistan. In a few years, the surplus the USA had accumulated with the sacking and absorption of the Soviet space during Bill Clinton evaporated and became a huge deficit in the Empire's accounts. Not long after, the 2008 financial meltdown happened, burying Bushism in a spectacular way.
There's a debate about the size of the hole the invasion of Iraq and Afghanistan cost the American Empire. Some put it into the dozens of billions of USDs; others put it into the trillions of USDs range. We will never know. What we know is that the hole was big enough to both erase the American surplus and to not avoid the financial meltdown of 2008.
Either the expansion through the Middle East wasn't fast and provided riches enough to keep up with the Empire's voracious appetite or the invasion itself already represented a last, desperate attempt by the Empire to avoid its imminent collapse. We know, however, that POTUS Bush had a list of countries he wanted to invade beyond Iraq (the "Axis of Evil") which contained a secret country (Venezuela). He was conscious Iraq and Afghanistan wouldn't be enough. Whatever the case, he didn't have the time, and the financial meltdown happened in his last year in the White House.Antonym , Sep 12 2020 1:26 utc | 66
karlof1 at #12great stuff from M. Hudson, one of my favorite reads these days. Hudson has krugman's number. thanks again for those snippets and the links!
Steve Keen also has his number and Keen is pro capitalist
Krugman is a moron dressed as a weasel sounding like a squawking hen, with the vision of a hemorrhoid.Kay Fabr , Sep 12 2020 2:30 utc | 69
The main harsh reaction of G.W. Bush after 9/11 was the formation of DHS and laws to legalize mass national and international spying on anybody with electronic traffic. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_Department_of_Homeland_Security#History
They knew who the perps of 9/11 were: their "own" Saudi irregulars in the CIA's US main land training camps, who started practicing on the "wrong"- domestic American- targets. These guys were officially entered without any background checks.
The Bush and Bin Laden families go way back in money making. That is why George had to ponder so long in that Florida kindergarten after hearing about the attacks: he had a suspicion. The Saudi only fly out after 9/11 confirms that.
Paul Krugman Is a pro. Completely owned by Deep State. His purpose is to deflect discussion and prevent questioning the official version of 9/11 , and get people chasing something completely irrelevant. Well done Paul, most have taken the bait.
Sep 11, 2020 | www.rt.com
MSM's attempts to spin Trump's attacks on senseless wars as disrespect for military at large are a dismal distortion of reality 11 Sep, 2020 12:06 Get short URL
Sep 09, 2020 | irrussianality.wordpress.com
PROOF OF COLLUSION AT LAST! SEPTEMBER 2, 2020 PAULR 18 COMMENTS
Despite the secondary roles played some bit part actors in the Russiagate drama, the central figure in allegations that Donald Trump colluded with the Russian government to be elected as president of the United States has always been Trumps' onetime campaign manager Paul Manafort. The recent US Senate report on Russian 'interference' in the 2016 presidential election thus started off its analysis with a long exposé of Manafort's comings and goings.
Simply put, the thesis is as follows: while working in Ukraine as an advisor to 'pro-Russian' Ukrainian president Viktor Yanukovich, Manafort was in effect working on behalf of the Russian state via 'pro-Russian' Ukrainian oligarchs as well as Russian billionaire Oleg Deripaska (a man with 'close ties' to the Kremlin). Also suspicious was Manafort's close relationship with one Konstantin Kilimnik, whom the US Senate claims is a Russia intelligence agent. All these connections meant that while in Ukraine, Manafort was helping the Russian Federation spread its malign influence. On returning to the USA and joining the Trump campaign, he then continued to fulfill the same role.
The fundamental flaw in this thesis has always been the well-known fact that while advising Yanukovich, Manafort took anything but a 'pro-Russian' position, but instead pressed him to sign an association agreement with the European Union (EU). Since gaining independence, Ukraine had avoided being sucked either into the Western or the Russian camp. But the rise of two competing geopolitical projects – the EU and the Russia-backed Eurasian Union – was making this stance increasingly impossible, and Ukraine was being put in a position where it would be forced to choose. This was because the two Unions are incompatible – one can't be in two customs unions simultaneously, when they levy different tariffs and have different rules. Association with the EU meant an end to the prospect of Ukraine joining the Eurasian Union. It was therefore a goal which was entirely incompatible with Russian interests, which required that Ukraine turn instead towards Eurasia.
Manafort's position on this matter therefore worked against Russia. Even The Guardian journalist Luke Harding had to concede this in his book Collusion , citing a former Ukrainian official Oleg Voloshin that, 'Manafort was an advocate for US interests. So much so that the joke inside [Yanunkovich's] Party of Regions was that he actually worked for the USA.'
If anyone had any doubts about this, they can now put them aside. On Monday, the news agency BNE Intellinews announced that it had received a leak of hundreds of Kilimnik's emails detailing his relationship with Manafort and Yanukovich. The story they tell is not at all what the US Senate and other proponents of the Trump-Russia collusion fantasy would have you believe. As BNE reports:
Today the Yanukovych narrative is that he was a stool pigeon for Russian President Vladimir Putin from the start, but after winning the presidency he actually worked very hard to take Ukraine into the European family. As bne IntelliNews has already reported, Manafort's flight records also show how he crisscrossed Europe in an effort to build support in Brussels for Yanukovych in the run up to the EU Vilnius summit.
On March 1, his first foreign trip as newly minted president was to the EU capital of Brussels. The leaked emails show that Manafort influenced Yanukovych's decision to visit Brussels as first stop, working in concert with his assistant Konstantin Kilimnik In a memorandum entitled 'Purpose of President Yanukovych Trip to Brussels,' Manafort argued that the decision to visit Brussels first would underscore Yanukovych's mission to "bring European values to Ukraine," and kick start negotiations on the Association Agreement.
The memorandum on the Brussels visit was the first of many from Manafort and Kilimnik to Yanukovych, in which they pushed Yanukovych to signal a clear pro-EU line and to carry out reforms to back this up.
To handle Yanukovych's off-message antics, Manafort and Kilimnik created a back channel to Yanukovych for Western politicians – in particular those known to appreciate Ukraine's geopolitical significance vis-à-vis Russia. In Europe, these were Sweden's then foreign minister Carl Bildt, Poland's then foreign minister Radosław Sikorski and European Commissioner for Enlargement Stefan Fule, and in the US, Vice President Joe Biden.
"We need to launch a 'Friends of Ukraine' programme to help us use informal channels in talks on the free trade zone and modernisation of the gas transport system," Manafort and Kilimnik wrote to Yanukovych in September 2010. "Carl Bildt is the foundation of this informal group and has sufficient weight with his colleagues in questions connected to Ukraine and the Eastern Partnership. ( ) but he needs to be able to say that he has a direct channel to the President, and he knows that President Yanukovych remains committed to European integration."
Beyond this, the emails show that Manafort and Kilimnik also tried hard to arrange a meeting between Yanukovich and US President Barack Obama, and urged Yanukovich to show leniency to former Prime Minister Yuliia Timoshenko (who was imprisoned for fraud).
It is noticeable that the members of the 'back channel' Manafort and Kilimnik created to lobby on behalf of Ukraine in the EU included some of the most notably Russophobic European politicians of the time, such as Carl Bildt and Radek Sikorski. Moreover, nowhere in any of what they did can you find anything that could remotely be described as 'pro-Russian'. Indeed, the opposite is true. As previously noted, Ukraine's bid for an EU agreement directly challenged a key Russian interest – the expansion of the Eurasian Union to include Ukraine. Manafort and Kilimnik were therefore very much working against Russia, not for it.
The idea, therefore, that Paul Manafort was an agent of influence for the Russian government flies against everything we know about what he actually did. As for Kilimnik, maybe he is a Russian intelligence agent – I'm not in a position to say. But if he is, he's a very weird one, who spent years actively pushing the Ukrainian government to pursue a policy which directly contradicted Russian interests.
None of this, needless to say, appears in the US Senate report. Instead, the report chooses to focus on the apparently shocking revelation that Manafort shared Trump campaign polling data with Kilimnik, as if this sharing of private information was in some ways a massive threat to national security and proof that Manafort was working for the Russians. The fact that both Manafort and Kilimnik spent years doing their damnedest to undermine Russia is simply ignored. Go figure!
Sep 06, 2020 | turcopolier.typepad.com
... ... ...
And in the nation's capital - Play it again, Sam.
Oh, look, no masks! And you thought that got covered up by the investigation done by the Mueller team? Let's go over this one more time:
The document declassified by DNI Grenell shows that there were 14 unique days when the NSA received requests to "unmask"--the first was on 30 November 2016 by UN Ambassador Samantha Power and the last came on 12 January from Joe Biden. There were two separate requests on the 14th of December by Samantha Power, which indicates two separate NSA reports. Samantha Power would not have to submit two requests for the same document.
Sep 06, 2020 | www.zerohedge.com
naro , 15 hours agoI Write Code , 15 hours ago
NYTimes article last week suggested that only 10% of Covid positive PCR tests are clinically significant and infectious.naro , 15 hours ago
NYTimes articles that are significant is much less than 10%.
1 play_arrowI Write Code , 15 hours ago
Like a broken clock it is occasionaly right.
I don't know, as soon as they print it, I think it becomes false.
Sep 03, 2020 | www.rt.com
"so basically, any legitimate grievance or concern of citizens is a Russian plot ." Other commenters tweeted that they didn't need any help from Moscow to clearly see that Biden's mind is failing .
See also: Russia now also to blame for US protests & Covid-19 disinformation – latest conspiracy from former intel head turned CNN analyst
Former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper went on CNN to accuse Russia of interfering in US affairs including the Covid-19 pandemic, Portland and Kenosha protests, and election meddling while giving no real evidence.
Clapper, who has previously said Russians are "typically, almost genetically driven to co-opt, penetrate, gain favor, whatever," was more than happy to push more xenophobic Russia conspiracy theories during a Monday CNN interview when prompted by anchor Alisyn Camerota.
Sep 02, 2020 | www.rt.com
The US Department of Homeland Security reportedly blocked the distribution of a July intelligence bulletin warning of a Russian plot to promote "misinformation" that the Democratic presidential candidate is in poor mental health.
The report by ABC News on Wednesday cited internal emails, and the media outlet said a DHS spokesperson confirmed that distribution of the bulletin to federal, state and local law enforcement agencies had been delayed. The spokesperson said the bulletin didn't meet quality standards, including having sufficient evidence and context, for dissemination, ABC said.ALSO ON RT.COM Trump and Dems take turns playing 'Russian card' – which only proves it's the joker
Democrats will likely pounce on the report to allege that the DHS blocked the warning to help President Donald Trump win the November election and that the Trump campaign's criticism of Biden's mental state is part of the Russian misinformation effort. Twitter users are already promoting the new collusion theory, asking " which 'homeland' does DHS serve?" and saying, " Trump and Putin are one."
The ABC report downplayed portions of the intelligence bulletin unrelated to Russia, including warnings that Iranian and Chinese state media outlets are promoting suggestions that Trump "suffers from psychosis" and may be in poor physical health. It also sets up the argument that any future criticism of the Democrat's mental soundness is Russian misinformation.
One Twitter user said the report is "laying the groundwork for 'anyone commenting on Joe's decline is in league with Russia' takes," while another inferred, "so basically, any legitimate grievance or concern of citizens is a Russian plot ." Other commenters tweeted that they didn't need any help from Moscow to clearly see that Biden's mind is failing .
Online speculation has grown over Biden's expanding series of infamous gaffes, such as welcoming his audience to the wrong place and then trying to pass it off as a joke when he gave a July speech in his home state of Delaware.
The Democrat has also stumbled in unscripted moments to know where he is , such as praising the beauty of Vermont when he was actually campaigning last year in New Hampshire, and whom he's with, such as mistaking his wife for his sister in a primary victory speech in March. He bragged in February that he negotiated the 2016 Paris Climate Agreement with Chinese leader Deng Xiaoping. Deng died in 1997.READ MORE
Democrats have tried to revive the Trump-Russia collusion narrative despite the failure of special prosecutor Robert Mueller to prove that the Trump campaign worked with Moscow to win the 2016 presidential election.
When the Office of the Director of National Intelligence informed congressional committees last week that intelligence briefings on election security issues would no longer be done in person, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff issued a statement saying, "The American people have both the right and the need to know that another nation, Russia, is trying to help decide who their next president should be."
The statement ignored the fact that Russia isn't the only country that has been accused of using disinformation and other means to influence the 2020 US elections. A US intelligence report last month warned that Russia, China and Iran, among others, have sought to influence voters and that mass use of voting by mail will make it easier for foreign countries to interfere. China and Iran also allegedly sought to discredit Trump, according to the intelligence warnings.
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Dec 08, 2016 | washingtonbabylon.comBy - 0
Doug Valentine's new book, The CIA as Organized Crime: How Illegal Operations Corrupt America and the World , is a compilation of newly updated articles and recent interviews. The book, which discusses a part of history that is rarely mentioned nowadays but is vital to understand as we enter the Trump era, is divided into four sections. The first covers the CIA's Phoenix program in Vietnam; the second looks at how the agency manages the War on Drugs; the third reviews how the Phoenix program became the model for Homeland Security and the War on Terror; and the fourth takes a look at the the CIA's influence on the media.
The CIA created the Phoenix program in South Vietnam in 1967 as a means of identifying, capturing, detaining, interrogating and assassinating the civilian leaders of the insurgency. As detailed in the book, the program has become the template for Homeland Security, as well as for waging the War on Terror and the War on Drugs.
The following edited excerpt, which focuses on the CIA's illegal domestic spying program, Chaos, was omitted from the book. It is taken from an interview Valentine did with Guillermo Jimenez in November 2014, originally titled "The CIA Has Become the Phoenix."
Cloaked in secrecy, the CIA is rarely written about and poorly understood. But while researching the infamous Phoenix program, Valentine managed to penetrate the agency and interview dozens of agency officers. His Phoenix research materials are available to the public at the National Security Archive. His interviews with several CIA officers are available online here and here .
GUILLERMO JIMENEZ: The Phoenix Program has recently been republished by Open Road Media as part of their Forbidden Bookshelves series. Would you mind sharing with us how your book was chosen for the series? What do you make of this new-found interest in Phoenix; what the CIA was up to in Vietnam; and what the CIA is up to generally?
VALENTINE: When the book came out in 1990, it got a terrible review in The New York Times . Morley Safer, who'd been a reporter in Vietnam, wrote the review. Safer and the Times killed the book because in it I said Phoenix never would have succeeded if the reporters in Vietnam hadn't covered for the CIA.
Several senior CIA officers said the same thing, that "So and so was always in my office. He'd bring a bottle of scotch and I'd tell him what was going on." The celebrity reporters knew what was going on, but they didn't report about it in exchange for having access. I said that in the book specifically about The New York Times . So I not only got the CIA angry at me, I also got the Vietnam press corps angry at me too.
Between those two things, the book did not get off to an auspicious start. The Times gave Safer half a page to write his review, which was bizarre. The usual response is just to ignore a book like The Phoenix Program . But The New York Times Book Review serves a larger function; it teaches the media elite and "intelligentsia" what to think and how to say it. So Safer said my book was incoherent, because it unraveled the bureaucratic networks that conceal the contradictions between policy and operational reality. It exposed Bill Colby [who ran Phoenix for the agency and later became CIA director] as a liar. Safer was upset that I didn't portray his friend and patron as a symbol of the elite, as a modern day Odysseus.
Luckily, with the Internet revolution, people aren't bound by the Times and network news anymore. They can listen to Russia Today and get another side of the story. So Mark Crispin Miller and Philip Rappaport at Open Road chose The Phoenix Program to be the first book they published. And it's been reborn. Thanks to the advent of the e-book, we've reached an audience of concerned and knowledgeable people in a way that wasn't possible 25 years ago.
It's also because of these Internet developments that John Brennan, the director of CIA, thought of reorganizing the the agency. All these things are connected. It's a vastly different world than it was in 1947 when the CIA was created. The nature of the American empire has changed, and what the empire needs from the CIA has changed. The CIA is allocated about $30 billion a year, so the organizational changes are massive undertakings. If you want to understand the CIA, you have to understand how it's organized.
JIMENEZ: I want to talk to you about that but first I'd like to touch upon the CIA's infiltration of the US media. I find it curious, because the way that you describe it, it's not so much a deliberate attempt to censor the media. There's a lot of self-censorship as a result of that already existing relationship. Is that how you see this?
VALENTINE: Yes. The media organizes itself the way the CIA does. The CIA has case officers running around the world, engaged in murder and mayhem, and the media has reporters covering them. The reporter and the case officer both have bosses, and the higher you get in each organization, the closer the bosses become.
The ideological guidelines get more restrictive the higher up you go. To join the CIA, you have to pass a psychological assessment test. They're not going to hire anybody who is sympathetic towards poor people. These are ruthless people who serve capitalist bosses . They're very rightwing, and t he media's job is to protect them. Editors only hire reporters who are ideologically pure, just like you can't get into the CIA if you're a Communist or think the CIA should obey the law.
It's the same thing in the media. You can't get a job at CNN if you sympathize with the Palestinians or report how Israel has been stealing their land for 67 years. The minute you say something that is anathema or upsets the Israelis, you're out. The people who enforce these ideological restraints are the editors and the publishers. For example, while covering the merciless Israeli bombardment of civilians in Gaza in 2014, Diana Magnay was harassed and threatened by a group of bloodthirsty Israelis who were cheering the slaughter. Disgusted, Magnay later referred to them as "scum" in a tweet. She was forced to apologize, transferred to Moscow, and banished forever from Israel.
In a similar case, NBC correspondent Ayman Mohyeldin was playing soccer with four young boys in Gaza when Israel shelled the playing field. Mohyeldin witnessed their murders, which he reported in a series of tweets. Without ever providing a reason, NBC pulled Mohyeldin from Gaza and prevented him from ever returning. NBC replaced Mohyeldin with Israeli sympathizer Richard Engel.
Any dictator would be happy with the way American media is organized. The minute you step out of the box, they fire you or send you off to Siberia . It's a homogenous system. Not just the media and CIA, but politicians too. As the 2016 primaries proved, you can't be a candidate for either party unless you pass the ideological test. You must be a freewheeling capitalist. You must support Israel with billions of tax payer dollars. You must give the military whatever weapons it wants. That's the nature of the American state. These things naturally work together because that is the way it has been structured for 240 years.
JIMENEZ: We've seen pseudo alternatives emerge in the Internet posing as adversarial or anti-establishment when they're anything but. We've seen this growing trend, and it's something to be mindful of as we look for these sources on the Internet.
VALENTINE: The Internet is a free for all, so you have to approach it the way any enlightened person approaches every part of America, which is buyer beware. Capitalism is not designed to protect poor people or make sure people lead healthy, fulfilling lives. It's designed to make sure the super-rich can steal from the poor. There's only so much wealth and the rich want it.
The rich want to monopolize information too. Is a particular piece of information on the Internet coming from a reliable source? Who knows? Just because some of it is true doesn't mean that all of it is true. To be able to discern whether the information is accurate or complete, you must be grounded in the reality that the capitalist system are organized to oppress you, keep you in the dark and off balance as much as possible. It's a game of wits and you've got to be smart about it. Buyer beware.
JIMENEZ: Now I'd like to talk about the recent organizational changes in the CIA. It stems from an article in The Washington Post by Greg Miller. The headline is "CIA Director John Brennan Considering Sweeping Organizational Changes." What the article is saying is that Brennan wants to restructure the CIA using the model of their Counterterrorism Center; merging different units and divisions, combining analysts with operatives into hybrid teams that will focus on specific regions of the world. This sounds to me like the organizational changes that were born out of Phoenix and that were exported to other parts of the world over the years. The CIA appears to be applying the same structure to all of its operations. Is that how you read this?
VALENTINE: Yes, and it's something that, from my perspective, was predictable, which is why The Phoenix Program was re-released now, because what I predicted 25 years ago has happened. And you can only predict accurately if you know the history.
The CIA initially, and for decades, had four directorates under an executive management staff: Administration, Intelligence, Operations, and Science and Technology. Executive management had staff for congressional liaison, legal issues, security, public relations, inspections, etc. Administration is just that: staff for finance, personnel, and support services like interrogators, translators and construction companies. Science and Technology is self-explanatory too, but with a typical CIA twist – science for the CIA means better ways to kill and control people, like the MKULTRA program. And now there's a fifth directorate, Digital, that keystrokes and hacks foreign governments and corporations.
The Operations people overthrew foreign governments the old fashioned way, through sabotage and subversion. The Operations Directorate is now the National Clandestine Service. The Intelligence Directorate, which is now called Analysis, studied political, economic and social trends around the world so that executive management could mount better operations to control them.
The Operations Directorate was divided into several branches. The Counterintelligence (CI) branch detected foreign spies. Foreign Intelligence (FI) staff "liaison" officers worked with secret policemen and other officials in foreign nations. They collected "positive intelligence" by eavesdropping or by recruiting agents. The Covert Action branch engaged in deniable political action. The Special Operations Division (now the Special Activities Division) supplied paramilitary officers. There was also a Political and Psychological branch that specialized in all forms of propaganda.
These branches and directorates were career paths for operations officers (operators) assigned to geographical divisions. An FI staff officer might spend his or her entire career in the Far East Asia Division. The managers could move people around, but those things, generally speaking, were in place when the CIA began. The events that led to the formation of the current Counterterrorism Center began in 1967, when US security services began to suspect that the Cubans and the Soviets were infiltrating the anti-war movement. Lyndon Johnson wanted to know the details, so his attorney general, Ramsay Clark, formed the Interdepartmental Intelligence Unit (IDIU) within the Department of Justice. The IDIU's job was to coordinate the elements of the CIA, FBI and military that were investigating dissenters. The White House wanted to control and provide political direction to these investigations.
The Phoenix program was created simultaneously in 1967 and did the same thing in Vietnam. It brought together 25 agencies and aimed them at civilians in the insurgency. It's political warfare. It's secret. It's against the rules of war. It violated the Geneva Conventions. It's what Homeland Security does in the US: bringing agencies together and focusing them on civilians who they think look like terrorists.
The goal of this kind of bureaucratic centralization is to improve intelligence collection and analysis so reaction forces can leap into the breach more quickly and effectively. In 1967, the CIA already had computer experts who were traveling around by jet. The world was getting smaller and the CIA, which had all the cutting edge technology, was way out in front. It hired Ivy Leaguers like Nelson Brickham to make the machine run smoothly.
Brickham, as I've explained elsewhere, was the Foreign Intelligence staff officer who organized the Phoenix program based on principles Rensis Likert articulated in his book New Patterns of Management . Brickham believed he could use reporting formats as a tool to shape the behavior of CIA officers in the field. In particular, he hoped to correct "the grave problem of distortion and cover-up which a reporting system must address."
Likert organized industries to be adaptable, and the CIA organized itself the same way. It was always reorganizing itself to adapt to new threats. And in 1967, while Brickham was forming Phoenix to neutralize the leaders of the insurgency in South Vietnam, James Angleton and the CIA's Counterintelligence staff were creating the MHCHAOS program in Langley, Virginia, to spy on members of the anti-war movement, and turn as many of them as possible into double agents.
Chaos was the codename for the Special Operations Group within Angleton's Counterintelligence staff. The CIA's current Counterterrorism Center, which was established in 1986, is a direct descendent of Chaos.
The CIA's CT Center evolved from the Chaos domestic spying mechanism into the nerve center of the CIA's clandestine staff. Same thing happened with the CIA's Counter-Narcotics Center at the same time. Both are modeled on Phoenix, and both are wonderful tools for White House cadres to exercise political control over the bureaucracies they coordinate. These "centers" are the perfect means for policing and expanding the empire; they make it easier than ever for the CIA to track people and events in every corner of the world. The need for the old-fashioned directorates is fading away. You don't need an entire directorate to understand the political, social and economic movements around the world anymore, because the United States is controlling them all.
The US has color revolutions going everywhere. It's got the World Bank and the IMF strangling countries with debt, like the banks are strangling college students and home owners here. The War on Terror is the best thing that ever happened to US capitalists and their secret police force, the CIA. Terrorism is the pretext that allows the CIA to coordinate and transcend every government agency and civic institution, including the media, to the extent that we don't even see its wars anymore. Its control is so pervasive, so ubiquitous; the CIA has actually become the Phoenix.
VALENTINE: It's the eye of god in the sky; it's able to determine what's going to happen next because it's controlling all of these political, social and economic movements. It pits the Sunnis against the Shiites. It doesn't need slow and outdated directorates. These Phoenix centers enable it to determine events instantaneously anywhere. There are now Counterterror Intelligence Centers all over the world. In Phoenix they were called Intelligence Operations Coordinating Centers. So it's basically exactly the same thing. It's been evolving that way and everybody on the inside was gearing themselves for this glorious moment for 30 years. They even have a new staff position called Targeting Officers. You can Google this.
JIMENEZ: Right, right, exactly.
VALENTINE: The centers represent the unification of military, intelligence and media operations under political control. White House political appointees oversee them, but the determinant force is the CIA careerists who slither into private industry when their careers are over. They form the consulting firms that direct the corporations that drive the empire. Through their informal "old boy" network, the CIA guys and gals keep America at war so they can make a million dollars when their civil service career is over.
JIMENEZ: The Washington Post and subsequent articles frame it as if these changes are drastic. But to hear you, it's a natural progression. So what does this announcement mean? Is the CIA putting out its own press release through the Washington Post just to give everyone the heads up?
VALENTINE: Well, everybody in the CIA was worried that if the directorates were reorganized, it would negatively affect their careers. But executive management usually does what its political bosses tell them to do, and Brennan reorganized in 2015. He created a fifth directorate, the Directorate for Digital Innovation (DDI) ostensibly as the CIA's "mantelpiece". But, as the Washington Times reported, "it is the formation of the new 'mission' centers – including ones for counterintelligence, weapons and counter-proliferation, and counterterrorism – that is most likely to shake up the agency's personnel around the world."
The CIA's "ten new Mission Centers" are designed to "serve as locations to integrate capabilities and bring the full range of CIA's operational, analytic, support, technical and digital skill sets to bear against the nation's most pressing national security problems."
This modernization means the CIA is better able to control people politically, starting with its own officers, then everyone else. That's the ultimate goal. Politicians, speaking in a unified voice, create the illusion of a crime-fighting CIA and an America with a responsibility to protect benighted foreigners from themselves. But they can't tell you what the CIA does, because it's all illegal. It's all a lie. In order for the politicians to hold office, they have to cover for the CIA. Their concern is how to explain the reorganization and exploit it. They squabble among themselves and cut the best deals possible.
Aug 19, 2020 | www.thekomisarscoop.com
As the Democratic Convention is in progress, it is fitting to look at how Democrats in Congress and the White House, with Republican collaboration, were responsible for the Magnitsky Act , the law that protects tax fraudster William Browder and his henchman Mikhail Khodorkovsky by erecting a wall against their having to face justice for their financial crimes. And ramps up hostility against Russia.
This is a half-hour interview about this I did today on this subject for Fault Lines . And a 15-minute interview for The Critical Hour . Here is an expanded version of what I said.
William Browder in the mid-1990s became manager of the Hermitage Fund, set up with $25 million from Lebanese-Brazilian banker Edmond Safra and Israeli mining investor Beny Steinmez to buy shares in Russian companies.
He says he started the fund, but that is a lie. He was brought in to manage other people's money. But after some years, when the two investors either died or confronted major financial problems, Browder gained control.
Browder doesn't like paying taxes.
Browder was an American who traded his citizenship for a UK passport in 1998 so he could avoid paying U.S. taxes on his stock profits. ( CBS called him a tax expatriate.)
He didn't like paying Russian taxes either. In an early rip-off, he and his partners billionaire Kenneth Dart of Dart cups and New York investor Francis Baker bought a majority of Avisma, a titanium company, that produces material used in airplanes. They cheated minority investors and the Russian tax collector of profits by using transfer pricing.
You sell your production to a fake company at a low price, then your fake company sells it at the world price. You book lower dividends to cheat minority shareholders, report lower taxes to cheat the Russian people.
Browder and partners bought Avisma from infamous oligarch Mikhail Khodorkovsky on the basis of continuing his transfer pricing scam. It was revealed by documents in a lawsuit when Browder and partners sued another infamous guy, Peter Bond, the Isle of man crook handling the rake-offs for not passing on the full amount of the skim. (No honor among thieves!) The legal documents where Browder admits to the scam are linked in this story .
Browder cheats bigtime on Russia taxes
Browder's next corruption was to cheat the Russians of taxes from his stock buys in Russia, to the tune of about $100million. That included claiming as deductions disabled workers who didn't work for him, local investments he never made, profits from stock buys of Gazprom the Russian energy conglomerate that non-Russians were not allowed to buy in Russia.
Investigations started in the early 2000s for $40 mil in evaded takes and led to legal judgments in 2004. When he refused to pay, in November 2005 he was denied a Russian visa and in 2006 he moved all his assets out of Russia. But the Russian tax evasion investigations continued.
Aug 31, 2020 | www.rt.com
A full-bench US federal appeals court has reversed an earlier decision to dismiss the 'Russiagate' case against former National Security Advisor Michael Flynn, returning it to the judge who refused to let the charges be dropped.
In a 8-2 ruling on Monday, the DC Circuit Court of Appeals sided with Judge Emmet Sullivan, and sent the case back to him for review. Sullivan had been ordered by a three-judge panel in June to drop the case against Flynn immediately, but hired an attorney and asked for an en banc hearing instead.
Flynn's attorney Sidney Powell said the split was "as expected" based on the tone of the oral arguments, pointing to a partisan divide on the bench, and added it was a "disturbing blow to the rule of law."
The former top lawyer for the Barack Obama administration, Neal Katyal, hailed the decision as "an important step in defending the rule of law" and argued the case should not be dismissed because Flynn had pleaded guilty.
Flynn had indeed pleaded guilty to one charge of lying to the FBI, but Powell moved to dismiss the charges due to the failure of his previous attorneys – a law firm with ties to the Democrats – and the government to disclose evidence that could set him free. After producing documents revealing that the FBI set out to entrap Flynn, had no valid cause to interview him in the first place, and the prosecutors improperly extorted him into a plea by threatening to charge his son, the Justice Department moved to drop all charges.ALSO ON RT.COM End of Russiagate? DOJ drops case against Trump adviser Flynn that started 'witch hunt'
Sullivan had other ideas, however. In a highly unusual move, he appointed a retired judge – who had just written a diatribe about the case in the Washington Post – to be amicus curiae and argue the case should not be dropped. It was at this point that Powell took the case to the appeals court, citing Fokker, a recent Supreme Court precedent that Sullivan was violating.
Ignoring the fact that Sullivan had appointed the amicus and sought to prolong the case after the DOJ and the appeals court both told him to drop it, the en banc panel argued the proper procedure means he needs to make the decision before it can be appealed.
One of the judges, Thomas Griffith, actually argued in a concurring opinion that it would be "highly unusual" for Sullivan not to dismiss the charges, given the executive branch's constitutional prerogatives and his "limited discretion" when it came to the relevant federal procedure, but said that an order to drop the case is not "appropriate in this case at this time" because it's up to Sullivan to make the call first.ALSO ON RT.COM 'Russiagate' case against ex-Trump adviser Michael Flynn effectively OVER, as DC appeals court orders to close it
The court likewise rejected Powell's motion to reassign a case to a different judge.
Conservatives frustrated by the neverending legal saga have blasted the appeals court's decision as disgraceful. "The Mike Flynn case is an embarrassing stain on this country and its 'judges'," tweeted TV commentator Dan Bongino. "We don't have judges anymore, only corrupted politicians in black robes."
While Flynn was not the first Trump adviser to be charged by special counsel Robert Mueller's 'Russiagate' probe, he was the first White House official pressured to resign over it, less than two weeks into the job.
With Mueller failing to find any evidence of "collusion" between President Donald Trump's campaign and Russia, Democrats have latched onto Flynn's case as proof of their 'Russiagate' conspiracy theory. The latest argument is that the effort to drop the charges against Flynn is politically motivated and proof of Attorney General Bill Barr's "corruption."
Barr is currently overseeing a probe by US attorney John Durham into the FBI's handling of the investigation against Trump during and after the 2016 election, with the evidence disclosed during the Flynn proceedings strongly implicating not just the senior FBI leadership but senior Obama administration figures as well.
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Aug 27, 2020 | thenewkremlinstooge.wordpress.com
JULIUS SKOOLAFISH August 27, 2020 at 2:36 am
Just letting all you contributors know how much I appreciate the links and key points to the various hot topics in, particularly involving Belarus/President Lukashenko (and what's-er-name) and the antics of Navalny et al. I have followed the Skripal case and it is an absolute face palmer that the 'victims' remain in solitary confinement unable to tell their 'story' while the 'perpetrators' (allegedly Alexander Petrov and Ruslan Boshirov) still have not run out of toothpaste, cereal and toilet paper and continue to elude Britain's finest
Since I had a hand in triggering this thread I Just wanted to get back to the intrepid Eva K Bartlett for a moment.
At 40:16 of her talk in the video below Eva says (first part tongue in cheek)
**"Being a Russian propagandist, a Kremlin agent, a DPRK stooge doesn't actually pay but speaking truth in the face of mountains of lies is a moral thing to do – human lives are at stake."**
I shared this elsewhere in the context of the events in Victoria, Australia and posed: "You might ask "What has Eva K Bartlett got to do with Andrews, Morrison, Hurley et al?"
Elsewhere I saw a meme featuring Andrews with a Kim Jong Un haircut. I commented that such a meme should more appropriately feature Lenin or Trotsky – or in (Daniel) Andrews' case, lower ranked henchmen such as Kaganovich or Beria.
Consider for example the narrative they [Andrews, Morrison, Hurley] have been spewing in recent years with regard to Syria and the DPRK (etc)
It comes as no surprise to me then that these supporters of terrorism, advocators of genocide and protectors of child trafficking and paedophilia would inevitably turn on 'their own people'.
• Eva Bartlett speaks on North Korea & Syria (FULL)
Aug 27, 2020 | www.moonofalabama.orgCitizenX , Aug 25 2020 17:52 utc | 45
Russia did it. Evil Putin ordered it. Horrible China sponsored it. Iran backed it. Hezbollah played a hand as well.
Thank Glorious God for the Indispensable Nation of American Exceptionalism. Rescuing the world from evil dictators and conspiring theorists plots. Evil doers who hate OUR way of life stand no chance against the Glorious Christians and their Honorable Zionist gatekeepers.
Thanks and Glory to American Gods that Juan Guaido is now the President of Venezuela. Soon the Zionist will offer their Chosen Ones to replace Evil Dictators.
Thanks and praise to MOA for shining Gods Light and dancing on Western narratives giving them validity against the Evil doers of Poison and injustice.
Trump and Pence are "Men of the Bible" seeking out injustice and filling the world with Christian values of Bro Love and world Peace. May all you Christians take a knee and pray for these Mens souls and the Soul of America for leading the way to righteousness. Oh yeah- and pray for whatever the fuck his name is Nirvany Nalvinny poisoned guy.
Nathna Mulcahy , Aug 25 2020 18:39 utc | 58William Gruff , Aug 25 2020 18:49 utc | 62
As the collective west, including Germany, proceed to fabricate another "highly likely" Putin play...
CHRIS ZELL @60 True.
If the Russians are really trying to assassinate, why do it in so theatrical a manner? Just shoot him twice in the back of the head and call it suicide like the Americans do.
Aug 27, 2020 | www.moonofalabama.org
The case of the alleged 'poisoning' of the Russian rabble rouser Alexey Navalny is becoming more curious.
Navalny fell ill on August 20 during a flight from Tomsk in Siberia to Moscow. The plane made an emergency landing in Omsk where he was transferred to a hospital. Navalny fell into a coma. The doctors diagnosed a sharp drop in his blood sugar. Navalny has diabetes and his symptoms as described were consistent with a diabetic shock. We therefore (somewhat prematurely) concluded that Navalny was not poisoned .
After a day and a half in the Omsk hospital the patient stabilized. On request of his family he was flown to Berlin and admitted to the Charité hospital. The Charité is a very large (14,000 employees) state run university clinic that is leading in many medical fields. Its laboratories found effects consistent with the ingestion of, or contact with, a cholinesterase inhibitor:Following his admission, Mr. Navalny underwent extensive examination by a team of Charité physicians. Clinical findings indicate poisoning with a substance from the group of cholinesterase inhibitors. The specific substance involved remains unknown, and a further series of comprehensive testing has been initiated. The effect of the poison – namely, the inhibition of cholinesterase in the body – was confirmed by multiple tests in independent laboratories.
As a result of this diagnosis, the patient is now being treated with the antidote atropine.
Cholinesterase is needed in the human nerve system to break down acetylcholine which is a signaling substance between synapses. Inhibitors of cholinesterase are used in the therapy of Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease, anxiety disorder and other illnesses. Cholinesterase inhibitors can be found in certain plant extracts or synthesized. There are two types of cholinesterase inhibitors, carbamates and organophosphates. Both types are also widely used as pesticides. During World War II organophosphates were developed as chemical weapons (tabun, sarin, soman) but not widely used.
The wording of the Charité statement seems to imply that the laboratory results point to the potential effects of a cholinesterase inhibitors, not to a specific substance itself. This is consistent with a statement by the clinic in Omsk which insists that no cholinesterase inhibitors, i.e a 'poison', were found:"When Alexey Navalny was admitted to the in-patient clinic, he was examined for a wide range of narcotics, synthetic substances, psychedelic drugs and medical substances, including cholinesterase inhibitors. The result was negative," said Sabayev, chief of the acute poisoning unit at the Omsk emergency care hospital where Navalny was treated before being airlifted to Germany.
"Besides, he did not have a clinical picture, specific for poisoning with substances from the group of cholinesterase inhibitors," Sabayev, who is also the top toxicologist in the Omsk Region and the Siberian Federal District, added.
We can be quite sure that a trained toxicologist would recognize a Cholinergic crisis . There is however a documented case from India in which an organophosphate poisoning was falsely interpreted as diabetic ketoacidosis (hat tip Bernd Neuner ):We present a 15-year-old girl who was initially treated for "diabetic ketoacidosis" with further worsening of her general condition. This delayed recovery, coupled with focused investigations, finally led us to a diagnosis and the appropriate management of an intentional overdose with organophosphorous (OP) pesticide, presenting as diabetic ketoacidosis.
But according to Kremlin spokesman Dimitry Peskov the Russian doctors made the right diagnosis and applied the correct therapy (machine translation):The statement by German doctors on the diagnosis of FBK founder Alexei Navalny is nothing new for Russian specialists, Dmitry Peskov, press secretary of the Russian President, told reporters.
"We have not yet learned anything new from this statement. We specifically contacted our doctors and asked how, from a professional point of view, we can relate to what was written. The fact is that the fact of this lowered cholinesterase was established in the first hours by our doctors in a hospital in Omsk. And the atropine, which the Germans are talking about and which is now being given to the patient, began to be administered during the first hour of the patient's stay in intensive care, " said Peskov.
The presidential spokesman stressed that the level of cholinesterase may decrease for a variety of reasons, including from taking a number of medications. At the same time, German doctors did not identify a toxic substance in Navalny's analyzes.
"Therefore, it is very important here to find out what caused the decrease in cholinesterase levels. And neither our doctors, nor the Germans have yet been able to establish the cause . At least, this follows from the statement of our German doctors' colleagues. There is no substance, unfortunately, it cannot be established, analyzes do not show it," Peskov explained.
He stressed that the analytical data of Russian and German doctors are the same, but the conclusions are different.
"We do not understand why our German colleagues are in such a hurry, using the word "poisoning". You know, this version was among the first that our doctors considered, but I repeat once again: the substance has not yet been established. Maybe the Germans have some data," said Peskov, noting that Russian doctors are ready to provide samples of the first tests.
If Navalny was poisoned - which is not established - the next question must be how Navalny came into contact with a cholinesterase inhibitor. Was the contact caused by himself or by someone else? Was it intentionally or unintentionally?
Navalny's spokeswomen has insisted that the only substance Navalny ingested that morning was a tea from an airport bar. A CCTV video from the airport shows that the tea was brought from the bar by a person that then sits down with Navalny. They presumably traveled together. How would the airport barkeeper, if he supposedly poisoned Navalny, knew for whom the tea was?
As 'western' media continue with their "Putin poisoned Navalny" nonsense it is important to again point out that other people have more reason to harm Navalny than the Kremlin does:During the last years Navalny has made some enemies by uncovering corruption cases. His latest one was about the local governor of Tomsk. It was also the reason why he had flown there. Should Navaly become the victim of a crime the suspects should be sought there.
Posted by b on August 25, 2020 at 11:57 UTC | Permalink
mijj , Aug 25 2020 12:19 utc | 1next page " the poison theory constructors are creating a colorful james bond style movie script. It captures the imagination. If the exciting, easily visualised, movie script is solidly imprinted in the imagination, then dull, tedious, evidence based reality doesn't get a look-in.vk , Aug 25 2020 12:39 utc | 2The India girl case is an interesting case if you're a doctor, but it is too over the top to claim they are common. The important thing to consider here is that the Russian doctor who treated him (and saved his life) discarded that possibility.vk , Aug 25 2020 12:47 utc | 3
It is only the doctor that can diagnose his/her patient. Hunting for exotic cases around the world is not diagnosis.
Besides, this doesn't explain the almost immediate poisoning accusation by Merkel and then, the next day (today), by top EU ideologue Josep Borrell. The German State (at least the BND) must be involved - the fact that the Charité is owned by the State itself only strengthens this hypothesis.Here's food for thought:gadzooks , Aug 25 2020 12:57 utc | 5
German economy contracts at record pace, recovery hinges on consumers
The numbers consolidate last month's preview. It's bad, and Germany is officially in an economic depression (2009-2020).
Uniting this data with my previous speculation on the "Prussian" and the "double-header" hypotheses, I'm inclined to think the Belarus-Navalny operations are a gambit by the EU to expand further to the East (Russia) and, ultimately, to dispute with China over the control of Eurasia in the 21st/22nd Centuries.I am a great fan of MOA, a refugee from ZH which is now an almost unreadable and tainted by its anti-China drumbeat.vk , Aug 25 2020 13:03 utc | 7
However, with all due respect I find that our host tends to come to conclusions a bit too quickly... Navalny could well have been poisoned, but by whom? Guaido and her female clone Tikhanovskaya better watch out - their handlers in the CIA may see them more useful as martyrs than as "legitimate opposition".
As for other topics, I also find b to have way, way too quickly dismissed the Beirut blast as anything other than AM.
As in, too quickly because the ramifications were too terrible to contemplate, as in the ascendence of unspeakable evil on the part of the shitty little state. As to whether the blast was nuclear or conventional, that is a minor point.Kremlin sees no grounds to launch criminal probe into Navalny's conditionStonebird , Aug 25 2020 13:10 utc | 8"If the substance is established and if it is established that this is poisoning, then, of course, this will be a cause for investigation," he [Press Secretary Dmitry Peskov] said.Someone on the web (might even be here) mentioned that cholinesterase inhibitors can be used against Cocaine dependence. Is this true or not? I do not have any other information and I am not a Medecin/doctor or user. But these days I am naturally cynical about any "official" statements, whoever makes them.Robert , Aug 25 2020 13:21 utc | 10
This (anti-cocaine use) might equally be "disinformation", but with its' widespread use in "elite" circles, it is not inconcievable. Navalny being in the toilets rather than having an immediate reaction to the tea at the airport, could be an indication that something happened in there.The Russians caused the hurricanes in the Gulf of Mexico in a plot to meddle with the U.S. elections by causing disruptions in Texas which may vote Democrat in November. Considering this it is plausible to think Putin poisoned Nav' in an attempt to take over the world.mpn , Aug 25 2020 13:52 utc | 12From 3/3 on twitter thread:Paco , Aug 25 2020 13:59 utc | 13
3/3 Though a doctor from another region of Russia, who did not treat Navalny, wrote that in his practice, cholinesterase inhibitors Proserin &Ubretid are allegedly widely used to prevent disorders developing in patients placed on mechanical ventilation.Posted by: vk | Aug 25 2020 12:39 utc | 2William Gruff , Aug 25 2020 14:14 utc | 15
Josep Borrell as the top ideologue of the EU is overestimating a gray functionary belonging to the Felipe González group, a group that somehow preceded the false center left of Blair in the UK or Clinton in the USA.
From that same group of politicians that first campaigned against Spain joining NATO back in the '80s with the slogan "De entrada no", something like to start with NO, well one of those socialists later became NATO's secretary general and lead the organization during its sinister days of the Yugoslavia bombings, handsomely rewarded monetarily later became Mister Pesc, a strange definition for the sort of foreign minister of the EU, the place than Borrell has been rewarded with nowadays, which means he has rendered the required services to the empire. Those guys true ideology is personal advancement and nothing else, so it kind of sounds funny to think he is the top ideologue of the EU, but then again, he could be, which is a true mesure of what the EU is worth politically, a pitiful colony.Stonebird @8: Cholinesterase inhibitors for cocaine addictionsomebody , Aug 25 2020 14:49 utc | 20
Note that this is an off-label use of cholinesterase inhibitors, so an American doctor would not likely prescribe it. Someone who has a supply of cocaine sufficient enough to become an addict, on the other hand, probably would not have difficulty obtaining a cholinesterase inhibitor like Galantamine, though. Navalny's CIA/State Department handlers who keep him on coke could probably get him anything he asked for, though if I were in his shoes I wouldn't put anything from them up my nose.Posted by: vk | Aug 25 2020 12:47 utc | 3BM , Aug 25 2020 15:00 utc | 21
Unlikely. Europe hardly survived WW2. Russia plus China are a lot of people to make angry.
It's more likely some projects continuing because someone has forgotten to stop them or because they still have got money left. You would have to carry Europe to fight and even then they would not fight.
As is, Europe's south has been bought up by Chinese investment. They invest strategically not for short term returns.
Noone will climb a tree before knowing the results of US elections.There is however a documented case from India in which an organophosphate poisoning was falsely interpreted as diabetic ketoacidosisOrage , Aug 25 2020 15:16 utc | 22
So what? Doctors make false diagnoses all the time. It is called medical error. A significant proportion of deaths in hospitals worldwide are due to medical error. India? Now, if somebody is going to suggest that medical error never happens in India I am going to say either they are a liar or an idiot. Medical errors also happen in German hospitals, by the way, including Charité - plenty of them! Including both with and without intent.
This whole Navalny "poisoning" fantasy stinks to high heaven. It differs very little in essential essence from the Skripal fantasy so far, and I am quite sure it is headed on the same path.But have we missed a point here? Is this not just trying to round the anti-Russia circle started by the Skripal poisoning? Will not everyone now assume that Navalny was poisoned with Novichok and that this proves beyond doubt that this is the preferred way for getting rid of Kremlin enemies? You don't really have to prove anything more, it is now all out there, like Russia gate, the dog whistle has been blown.Orage , Aug 25 2020 15:19 utc | 23Somebody 16MarkU , Aug 25 2020 15:21 utc | 24
The findings of low cholineesterase was the same in Omsk and Berlin but the conclusions are different. There is no problem here.@ BM (21)John Gilberts , Aug 25 2020 15:36 utc | 25
Re: "This whole Navalny "poisoning" fantasy stinks to high heaven. It differs very little in essential essence from the Skripal fantasy so far, and I am quite sure it is headed on the same path."
I agree completely. The whole script is so old and tired one would have to have spent the last few decades living under a rock not to see through it, throw enough shit and hope some of it sticks. It is probably just another ploy to put pressure on the German government to cancel Nordstream 2.An accompaniment to b's excellent analyses of the novichokked navalny:Peter AU1 , Aug 25 2020 15:59 utc | 28
Cartalucci: 'Poisoned' Kremlin Critic Flown to Germany as German-Russian Nord Stream 2 Nears Completion
https://landdestroyer.blogspot.com/2020/08/poisoned-kremlin-critic-flown-to.htmlCirce 19c1ue , Aug 25 2020 16:20 utc | 31
In his previous Navalny article, b referenced this in the update.
"Navalny said himself that he suffered from diabetes in 2019, giving some credence to this explanation."
This is the source a few other articles on the net also quote from, but where did it come from. I spent some time searching for other earlier references to Navalny having diabetes but could not find any.@vk #3Gary , Aug 25 2020 16:35 utc | 32
Why do you believe that the EU and/or Germany wish to expand eastward when their economy is in deep recession and they already have 45 million Ukrainians for cheap labor?
I would note that even East Germany is lagging West Germany in terms of economic progress since reunification, which itself was incredibly expensive. Ukraine isn't a great example either of neither economic progress nor contributing integration into the EU.From southfront:William Gruff , Aug 25 2020 16:37 utc | 33
The air travel between Russia and Germany is mostly suspended due to coronavirus limitations. The flight to Germany was organized by the Berlin-based Cinema for Peace Foundation. The flight was paid by businessman Boris Zimin. Boris Zimin is the son of Dmitry Zimin – the founder of VimpelCom (Beeline telecommunications brand).
PJSC VimpelCom is the third-largest wireless and second-largest telecom operator in Russia. It is wholly owned by VEON Ltd. through which it is linked to Mikhail Fridman, Russian Western-linked business magnate. Fridman's Alfa Group Consortium is among the main shareholders of VEON Ltd.
These persons and entities represent the Russian influence group linked to the global finance. The very same group has links and support work of think tanks affiliated with the Higher School of Economics, the center of the Alma Mater of the liberal economic block of the Russian government. Moscow Mayor Sergey Sobanin and Chairwoman of the Bank of Russia Elvira Nabiullina also could be considered a part of the global finance in Russia.
In Russian media, this network of Western-linked persons, organizations, influence groups and top officials is often described as the 'liberal tower' of the Kremlin. Thus, despite the image of the opposition figure, Navalny receives support from the highest levels of the Russian governance and business systems.c1ue @31vk , Aug 25 2020 16:45 utc | 34
Capitalists are desperate for markets, not cheap labor.@ Posted by: c1ue | Aug 25 2020 16:20 utc | 31Stonebird , Aug 25 2020 16:58 utc | 35
1) the plan was never to make the DDR prosperous. On the contrary: too much people living prosperously is damaging to capitalist expansion;
2) that's the pattern of recent EU expansion, with the latest great batch of new members coming from ex-Yugoslavia and the Iron Curtain (why not, for example, insisting on the accession of Norway and Switzerland, which are much richer and culturally alike countries?);
3) besides the huge pool of cheap and relatively well-educated labor power (which can be imported to Germany proper, thus rising unemployment rates, thus eroding the power of the mighty German unions), there's the pot of gold of the old communist infrastructure (water, electricity, communications, education, healthcare), which is already centralized and thus would result in monopolistic rent for the German capitalists who will inevitably buy them in a privatization process (as happened with Slovakia);
4) Belarus is the natural springboard to invade Russia, thus increasing Germany's leverage within NATO.William Gruff | Aug 25 2020 14:14 utc | 15pnyx , Aug 25 2020 17:25 utc | 38
Thanks for the reply. - Even if Navalny was suffering from a "manque" of his favourite substance, the Germans and others would not mention it. He would not have had (much ?) trace in his blood either.Esteemed B, I am still waiting for a source reference for Navalnys diabetes. It is still important to get the information confirmed. His environment says that he did not consume anything except the tea. That would be a very risky behavior for a diabetic in itself.Virgile , Aug 25 2020 17:25 utc | 39
Whether a diabetic shock can be ruled out due to the cholinesterase problem, which can probably be considered certain after it has been confirmed by two hospitals, I cannot judge. You seem to assume that.
The way Merkel and other politicians immediately jumped on the poisoning thesis is reminiscent of May's reaction in the Skripal case. It is difficult not to become suspicious.I am sure there are more effective ways to assassinate a diabetic man. Who ever did it is an amateur.karlof1 , Aug 25 2020 17:26 utc | 40I dwell on the words Navalny spoke in Tomsk to his crew, about him becoming a martyr and it not helping Putin, then his trauma on the following day. Yes, the observation about the tea at the airport is of great importance. The time between its ingestion and boarding the plane is similarly important IF he was administered a toxic agent via that tea. And if he's diabetic or even pre-diabetic, there's a suite of meds he'd need to take daily if not requiring insulin, and those meds must be ingested with food--I know.Peter AU1 , Aug 25 2020 17:32 utc | 41
I imagine all security camera footage of his time at Tomsk airport has been scrutinized, the result being the Kremlin's ruling no investigation's warranted. That decision's good enough for me.karlof1Clueless Joe , Aug 25 2020 17:37 utc | 42
navalny's words the day before about being a hero if Putin killed him is I think key. Russia seems to produce a few Rasputin types - like the clown that nailed his balls to the pavement.
Seen some photos of Navalny when he was younger and his eyes looked normal. Those wide open staring eyes in selfies and so forth in recent years give more than a hint of madness.I agree with Karlof1. If Navalny is diabetic, he seems a bit careless to me to just drink a tea all morning. He should eat something according to his diet and probably take some meds as well (if the disease isn't at a very early stage).Beibdnn , Aug 25 2020 17:38 utc | 43@ Gadzooks 5Paco , Aug 25 2020 17:50 utc | 44
Nuclear or conventional ' a minor point '.
That has to be one of the most absurd, ill considered and ridiculous comments I've ever read.
IF the explosion had been caused by a nuclear weapon, the world would very possibly be in a Niclear winter right now.
Not to mention there wouldn't be much of Lebanon and surrounding area left...Posted by: Peter AU1 | Aug 25 2020 17:32 utc | 41CitizenX , Aug 25 2020 17:52 utc | 45
To compare Pavlensky to Rasputin is not proportional. The monk was the victim of the British services and has been thoroughly discredited and demonized, by the same guys that killed him. Check out the movie about Rasputin's life with no other than Gerard Depardieu. Rasputin had the Tsarina's ear and he was against Russia going to war, the first world war, and that was the main motive to eliminate him.
Pavlensky on the other hand is a freak useful to the empire propaganda on a condom basis, use and throw away, just like the Pussy Riots, always referred to as the punk group, a group that never issued a first album, save for a couple of clips on youtube after leaving Russia. Freaks of that caliber are a dime a dozen everywhere, but since they are useful to discredit Russia, well then they are endowed with media attention, and even Hillary receiving one of the Riots member, Tolokonnikova, the one that being pregnant engaged in a public orgy, another one of the group hits was introducing a frozen chicken into a members vagina. Pavlensky was hailed as a hero for burning the FSB building entrance door, the feared Lyubianka. He tried the same trick with the gates of the Bank of France, and he was sent to a psychiatric ward, with no media noise at all. If that would have occurred back in Moscow we would be still hearing and reading about psychiatric torture back to the good old days of the Soviet Union.Russia did it. Evil Putin ordered it. Horrible China sponsored it. Iran backed it. Hezbollah played a hand as well.pretzelattack , Aug 25 2020 18:19 utc | 49
Thank Glorious God for the Indispensable Nation of American Exceptionalism. Rescuing the world from evil dictators and conspiring theorists plots. Evil doers who hate OUR way of life stand no chance against the Glorious Christians and their Honorable Zionist gatekeepers.
Thanks and Glory to American Gods that Juan Guaido is now the President of Venezuela. Soon the Zionist will offer their Chosen Ones to replace Evil Dictators.
Thanks and praise to MOA for shining Gods Light and dancing on Western narratives giving them validity against the Evil doers of Poison and injustice.
Trump and Pence are "Men of the Bible" seeking out injustice and filling the world with Christian values of Bro Love and world Peace. May all you Christians take a knee and pray for these Mens souls and the Soul of America for leading the way to righteousness. Oh yeah- and pray for whatever the fuck his name is Nirvany Nalvinny poisoned guy.they like to reuse the same propaganda memes over and over. Russian bounties to the Taliban become Iranian bounties to the Taliban, Novichok becomes cholinesterase inhibitor, rinse and repeat.Nathna Mulcahy , Aug 25 2020 18:39 utc | 58As the collective west, including Germany, proceed to fabricate another "highly likely" Putin play, may I ask what they have been doing while the collective west has buried Julian Assange alive? Hypocricy is a much too weak word for it.CHRIS ZELL , Aug 25 2020 18:43 utc | 60I find fault with this poison idea. Whether Skripals or this guy, why can't Russians competently kill somebody? It can't be that difficult.vk , Aug 25 2020 18:49 utc | 61
Also, did his aide give him the tea? How was the poisoning supposedly engineered?@ Posted by: Circe | Aug 25 2020 18:36 utc | 57William Gruff , Aug 25 2020 18:49 utc | 62
Navalny's still alive.
@ Posted by: Clueless Joe | Aug 25 2020 17:37 utc | 42
There's an extreme treatment for diabetics type 2, where you live in a near state of starvation for months. In some mild cases, it is stated to cure diabetes.
Navalny could be going through this treatment, hence just a cup of tea (there are many teas famous for cutting the appetite) in the morning.CHRIS ZELL @60 True.Richard Steven Hack , Aug 25 2020 18:52 utc | 63
If the Russians are really trying to assassinate, why do it in so theatrical a manner? Just shoot him twice in the back of the head and call it suicide like the Americans do.August 24, 2020 Expert reaction to statement from Charité-Universitätsmedizin Berlin hospital that Alexei Navalny may have been poisoned with a substance from the group of cholinesterase inhibitorPeter AU1 , Aug 25 2020 19:05 utc | 64
I've seen this site before - they post statements from various medical people on matters of public medical interest, such as the pandemic. Useful for people who want some background on the chemicals involved.
Posted by: Circe | Aug 25 2020 16:14 utc | 29
Yup. Just ran across that piece while searching for anything on Navalny having diabetes. Found nothing so far beyond that. b's source appears to be the only one mentioning any diabetes in Navalny's medical history. Apparently his personal doctor has denied this, saying that the "diabetes" issue appears to have more a "description" of his medical condition rather than an actual diagnosis.
Posted by: karlof1 | Aug 25 2020 17:26 utc | 40 And if he's diabetic or even pre-diabetic, there's a suite of meds he'd need to take daily if not requiring insulin, and those meds must be ingested with food--I know.
Yes, Metformin is the preferred drug. I started on twice a day, then once I lost 45 pounds, the doctor dropped me to one a day. In fact, now I could stop taking it, but I continue to do so because it has alleged anti-aging properties. The only real negative is that it leeches vitamin B-12 from the body - but I take tons of B-12 anyway, so doesn't concern me. Metformin usually needs to be taken with food because otherwise it tends to give you "the runs".
I found an article that says the following:Russian news agency Interfax later quoted officials in Omsk as saying tests had identified the presence of an industrial chemical in his body.
Russia's Ministry of Internal Affairs told the agency that since the substance they claim was present is commonly used to increase plasticity in products, "it is possible that it could appear in surface washings through the contact of Alexei Navalny with similar objects, for example, through a plastic cup".
Studies have previously shown that the chemical officials were referring to - 2-ethylhexyl diphenyl phosphate - does not have a strong toxic effect on humans.
So it appears from the articles so far that initially the police detected that specific chemical, but medical experts ruled it out as a cause, merely a by-product of having drunk from a plastic cup.
This article discusses the term "metabolic disease", clarifying that it doesn't necessarily mean diabetes.
Bottom line: There is no evidence Navalny had diabetes, although he might well have had either Type 2 or Type 1 diabetes but never diagnosed. However, if he was in a diabetic coma, that should have been detected almost immediately, even by first responders in the ambulance. Beyond that, it appears that whatever chemical was the cause of his condition, it's likely undetectable now.
So another "nothing-burger" which will be seized on to drum up hysteria against Russia. And I've spent *way* too much time on this irrelevant crap.Richard Steven Hackkarlof1 , Aug 25 2020 19:13 utc | 65
At your age, you should take an interest in dissecting and studying insects. Re coma from undiagnosed diabetes. From what I can find, that would be due to high blood sugar, whereas a diagnosed patient taking meds can be hit with low blood sugar if carbohydrates and insulin are not matched.We need a timeline showing when tea drunk; when airplane boarded; when Navalny went to loo on plane. Video showing his demeanor as he boarded would be great. It's been said his stomach was empty except for the tea, so anything in that tea presumably would have acted quickly, prior to his boarding. Or there was nothing in the tea and Navalny injured himself -- or was injured by someone during the walk in the jet-way from the terminal to the plane. Security Video?Peter AU1 , Aug 25 2020 19:37 utc | 68
karlof1Lurk , Aug 25 2020 20:18 utc | 76
"The opposition leader posed with the female supporter moments before taking his seat on a flight from the Siberian city of Tomsk to Moscow on Thursday."
"Mr Navalny drank a cup of tea at a cafe inside Tomsk airport, which his supporters suspect had been poisoned because it was all he ate or drank that morning."
"The saleswoman, who did not want to be identified, said one of Mr Navalny's entourage bought the tea at the counter and took it to him at the table."The long delay between administration of the poison and the onset of effects AND the apparent nonlethatity are clear evidence of novichok. Case closed.William Gruff , Aug 25 2020 20:25 utc | 77Lurk @77cj , Aug 25 2020 20:29 utc | 78
Precisely four hours between contact with novichok and onset of symptoms, regardless of victim age, weight, health, and quantity of novichok contacted. It is a truly amazing chemical weapon, though not very practical for battlefield use.Hi B,William Gruff , Aug 25 2020 20:46 utc | 80
testing for circulating cholinesterase activity is very simple-- a chromogenic assay with acetyl thiocholine and DTNB. So its the first thing you would do in a case like this. In the case of a nerve agent there should be no circulating activity. The Russians must have known this.
So the question is now -- is there anything stuck to the active site serine of the enzyme-- an adduct. This one for Porton Down -- they will find it probably by immunoprecipitation and mass spectrometry and they ought to get the mass and some structural data on the toxin. Clinically, he should have had a bradycardia and excess secretions and pupils constricted. Doesn't sound like that. The question is can we trust the West to be truthful here. After various OPCW fiascos I doubt it.
CJjared @80Digital Spartacus , Aug 25 2020 21:04 utc | 81
Whenever Navalny does end up dying the Russian government will be blamed anyway, so if they wanted him dead then why not just blow him up with some missiles like the US did with General Soleimani? Why not just arrest him, claim he resisted arrest, then shoot him like happens with so many people in the US?
This talk about him being targeted by the Russian government using obscure toxins that don't work is beyond silly.Due to Navalny's dealings in Tomsk, this smells more of a bid to leave the country. Orchestrations set in place by Germany suggests an asset that has run his course, but they can't leave him in country to deal with any complications of him being taken by someone else. This doesn't feel like state acting....or at least not the Russian state. Gruff is right, this isn't targeting by the Russians. Navalny hasn't been relevant in Russian circles since at least 2012-13 if he was even then.vk , Aug 25 2020 21:05 utc | 82I don't understand why people commenting here still insist on playing CSI Miami. The Russian doctors have already publicly stated their own lab results showed absolutely no signs of Cholinesterase Inhibitors. As in evidence of zero CI - not zero evidence of CI:farm ecologist , Aug 25 2020 22:13 utc | 89
Russian Doctors Deny Navalny Had Traces, Symptoms of Cholinesterase Inhibitors Poisoning"Upon his admission to the [Omsk] hospital, Alexey Navalny was tested on a wide range of narcotics, synthetic substances, psychodiletics and medicinal substances, including cholinesterase inhibitors -- all tests came back negative ," Sabayev said in a press statement, as quoted by the Omsk Ministry of Health.
No cholinesterase inhibitors were used, according to the Russian lab results. It's not that they didn't test Navalny for the substances - they did and they came out negative.
Sabayev even called the Germans' bluff:"Additionally, Navalny lacked symptoms specific of the poisoning with cholinesterase inhibitors substances . As we said earlier, we are ready to share Alexey Navalny's samples with our German colleagues for examination ," the health official [Sabayev] added.
MoA's own German source state the lab tests in Germany were carried out by "independent laboratories". They most likely are in BND's control, in one way or the other. Many Western European nations have constitutional clauses that allow their respective governments (usually, at the discretion of the executive) to intervene directly on the private sector in specific occasions, normally under "national security" reasons. The executive of the British government, for example, has a legal device that allows it to outright censor (without the need for legislative approval) any specific information from all the British media outlets. I'm sure modern Germany also has many constitutional clauses that allow its government and intelligence agencies to intervene anywhere, anytime in the German economy instantly and covertly, under the umbrella of national security.
As I predicted, the Russians aren't that stupid. They stored some blood samples from Navalny, and they know, for sure, that he wasn't poisoned with CIs. That's why Peskov was so direct, so sudden and so confident when he declared the Kremlin was in no hurry - because they saw no reason - to initiate an investigation on Navalny's sudden health problems. And he also called the German bluff ("If the substance is established and if it is established that this is poisoning, then, of course, this will be a cause for investigation", i.e. there won't be an investigation because there's no poison).It is known that activation of acetylcholine receptors (specifically M3 muscarinic receptors) in the pancreas promotes insulin release into the bloodstream, which consequently would tend to decrease blood glucose.Jen , Aug 25 2020 23:07 utc | 92
It's therefore possible that hypoglycemia could be triggered by increased acetylcholine levels (drug-induced or otherwise). This would be less likely to occur in diabetics, as such individuals would be deficient in either the ability to produce (type 1 diabetes) or respond (type 2 diabetes) to insulin.From Ekonomika Segodnya:Jen , Aug 25 2020 23:21 utc | 94
Anastasiya Brotskaya (24 August 2020): "Charite suspected of unprofessionalism because of conclusions on Navalny"
Dmitri Petrovsky, a doctor of medical sciences, a surgeon and deputy of the municipality of Yaroslavl, questioned the competence of German doctors who said that blogger Alexei Navalny had been poisoned.
Doctors [treating] Navalny [at] the German clinic "Charité" reported on Monday, August 24, about the presence in the body of the blogger substance, part of the group of inhibitors cholinesterase. According to them, this indicates the poisoning of the head of the Anti-Corruption Foundation (recognized as a foreign agent).
Dmitri Petrovsky, M.D., surgeon and deputy of the municipality of Yaroslavl, commented on the statement of German medics."What they found in Navalny cholinesterase inhibitors after being in intensive care is normal. They should be in the man who was in intensive care and was on ventilator. And if the doctor finds them in the analysis of the person after a stay in the operating room and concludes that he was poisoned, then the conclusion is: either it is a political order, or an illiterate doctor," the expert said.
According to public figure Ernest Makarenko, the hospitalization of Navalny in ["Charité"] is nothing but a political matter. Omsk doctors coped perfectly with the blogger's treatment, but to make Navalny a "victim", he had to be defiantly taken to the West, the expert added.
Readers will need to use Google Translate.
In other words, if Navalny had not been found to have cholinesterase inhibitors in his body after being treated in an ICU with intubation, then the doctors at the Omsk hospital who initially treated him hadn't been doing their job properly.Aha - found MPN's comment @ 12, clicked on the link to Elena Evdokimova's tweets and then clicked on a link she provides and here is another article (from Zhurnalistskaya Pravda)karlof1 , Aug 25 2020 23:52 utc | 96
on Dmitri Petrovsky's comments about Navalny's treatment in Germany.
"Dmitry Petrovsky: Charite Clinic shows amateurism in conclusions on Navalny"
What they found in Navalny cholinesterase inhibitors after being in intensive care is normal. They should be in the man who was in intensive care and was on ventilator. If they weren't there, it would be strange, I'd be surprised.
Tonight, doctors of the German clinic "Charite" found in the blood of blogger Alexei Navalny substance, which, in their opinion, could provoke his illness, and hastened to announce the poisoning. However, in Russian practice, this substance is widely used to prevent disorders that developing in patients on ventilator.
German doctors found in Navalny substance - cholinesterase inhibitor.
"The effect of the toxin, i.e. the inhibition of cholinesterase in the body, has been proven several times in independent laboratories. According to the diagnosis, the patient is treated with an antidote to atropine. The outcome of the disease remains unsafe and the subsequent effects, especially in the nervous system, cannot be ruled out at this time," the statement obtained by Izvestia reads.
Deputy of the municipality of Yaroslavl, M.D., surgeon Dmitry Petrovsky commented on this "find" of German colleagues."Cholinesterase inhibitors are widely used medicines in medicine. Basically, they are used in the postoperative management of patients, when transferring to independent breathing. That's what Navalny had. He was first on ventilator and when trying to translate it, could use the drug Proserin. It is a cholinesterase inhibitor that is officially administered to all patients when transferred to independent breathing. It must be used. I think it was used. But I also understand that, most likely, he had to shine as Proserin's German colleagues. Perhaps used not Proserin in its pure form, but another drug, more rare - Ubretide, which is also an absolutely official drug, which is used in intensive care, in postoperative practice to prevent bladder atony, to prevent bowel atony and, accordingly, widely used. But, I admit, it can be used little in Germany, and it was not in the toxicology kit, so they could be surprised, and because of this all the cheese-bor.
What they found in Navalny cholinesterase inhibitors after being in intensive care is normal. They should be in the man who was in intensive care and was on ventilator. If they weren't there, it would be strange, I'd be surprised.
When a person breathes with the help of the ventilator, various disorders develop, including respiratory, cardiovascular, with the intestines, with the bladder. Various drugs are used to prevent these disorders, including cholinesterase inhibitors. And if the doctor finds them in the analysis of the person after a stay in the operating room and concludes that he was poisoned, then the conclusion is: either it is a political order, or an illiterate doctor."
Perhaps next time Navalny is in Russia and has a seizure or a collapse requiring IC treatment and intubation, hospital staff should just arrange to send him to the closest international airport and phone Charité to collect him as he is.
Thanks MPN for the link to Evdokimova's tweets.Jen @93 & 95--Thom Prentice , Aug 25 2020 23:55 utc | 97
Thanks for providing those! IMO, sometime after the Skripal kidnapping a memo was sent to all Russian medical personnel about the handling of known dissidents -- to use kid gloves and a fine tooth comb whilst saving all fluids taken for testing and using an impeccable evidence chain, for that's what's related by the doctor. I'd like to think such attention to detail is usual practice in Russia.He has diabetes. He ate nothing but tea. Ergo diabetic shock. Qed.james , Aug 26 2020 0:59 utc | 98i recommend a new ''military grade chemical agent" Novichok in honour of Alexey Navalny... maybe alexeychok is better... it has a nice malevolent russian ring to it!
Aug 27, 2020 | thenewkremlinstooge.wordpress.com
ET AL August 26, 2020 at 1:32 amMARK CHAPMAN August 26, 2020 at 2:54 pm
Vis earlier posts about the US pressuring India to limit ties with Russia:
Asia Times: US aiming to break Russia's hold on India
US Senator demonizes Russia 'as supporting thugs' and 'undermining democracy' in bid to lure India closer to US and its Quad alliance
The Nikkei Asian Review, well known for its anti-China reportage, featured an article 0n the weekend titled "India should ignore Putin's offer to broker accord with China."
The author is none other than Marco Rubio, the high-flying Republican senator from Florida and the acting chairman of the US Senate Intelligence Committee, co-chairman of the Congressional-Executive Commission on China and a ranking member of the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations. ..
Rubio, Rubio, you're the big boob-io!
Is Modhi too polite to tell the US to f/o and the US takes this as encouragement to keep making 'suggestions'? I wonder at which point the penny will drop and Washington will stop this stupid behavior?
Rubio is high, I'll give him that; I don't know about high-flying. It has become political gold in America to say something insulting about Russia or its leader, or both, and much of the drooling electorate responds positively. America being the nation of the shortsighted and the instant-gratification fans, it is hard to see down the road to here such behavior might cost it, and for right now it sure is fun.
Washington obviously thinks it is irreplaceable as a trade partner, because it keeps dangling the "If you want to do business with us, you'll do as we say" ultimatum, which it evidently believes is persuasive. It remains to be seen if other countries are going to abase themselves for money. They might; it is a powerful incentive. But the USA is defining 'loyalty' in a whole new context, suspiciously like the collecting of 'vassals' as described by Putin. Saying you will do as you are told by Washington now implies that you will stay bought, no matter how wiggy American policies become.
I think most traditional US allies will stay on the fence for as long as they can, hoping for some idea of the direction the USA intends to take. But its debt is dragging it down and down, and its squalling that it must do every deal so that it is to America's advantage makes it less and less a desirable commercial partner.
Aug 27, 2020 | thenewkremlinstooge.wordpress.com
ET AL August 25, 2020 at 10:52 amMARK CHAPMAN August 25, 2020 at 3:21 pm
Euractiv mit Neuters: Russian-backed organisations amplifying QAnon conspiracy theories, researchers say
Russian government-supported organisations are playing a small but increasing role amplifying conspiracy theories promoted by QAnon, raising concerns of interference in the November US election.
Yes, yet again new data/analytics shitpad Graphika (where Ben 'Russia is Evil' Nimmo an expert at the Atlantic Council* shakes his butt) is being used as a source.
I haven't bothered to look at the timing of the cycles when the western propaganda efforts decide to bring on stream a new bs site to peddle their rubbish, but I suppose that now Bell-End Cat is more widely known to be NATO affiliated/whatever, an opening for another 'honest' data/fact driven organization that the PPNN can quote laundered fake intel is required. One thing in common is that they are all new but have some old hands on deck.
counts among its ranks such luminaries as Ben Nimmo, perhaps best known for baselessly accusing British and Finnish citizens of being Russian bots. Nimmo, who remains a senior non-resident fellow at pro-war NATO-backed think tank Atlantic Council's Digital Forensic Research Lab and has also worked with the UK government's secretive Integrity Initiative, was hired by Graphika last year as its Head of Investigations, suggesting the company values a vivid imagination over factual accuracy
Yawn. Everything that happens which the west finds irritating or uncomfortable to explain is the work of Russian hackers or bots. Simples.
Aug 27, 2020 | www.theamericanconservative.com
Commenting on the spotlight that U.S. intelligence officials have placed on both countries' interference efforts (along with Iran's), Pelosi and Schiff declared that the analysis "provided a false sense of equivalence to the actions of foreign adversaries by listing three countries of unequal operational intent, actions, and capabilities together."
In particular, they charged, the actions of Kremlin-linked actors seeking to undermine Vice President Biden, and seeking to help President Trump" were glossed over.
Pelosi stated subsequently, "The Chinese, they said, prefer (presumptive Democratic nominee Joe) Biden -- we don't know that, but that's what they're saying, but they're not really getting involved in the presidential election."
... ... ...
Also alleging that Chinese agents are increasingly active on major social media platforms -- a study from research institute Freedom House, which reported that :
"[C]hinese state-affiliated trolls are apparently operating on [Twitter] in large numbers. In the hours and days after Houston Rockets general manager Daryl Morey tweeted in support of Hong Kong protesters in October 2019, the Wall Street Journal reported, nearly 170,000 tweets were directed at Morey by users who seemed to be based in China as part of a coordinated intimidation campaign. Meanwhile, there have been multiple suspected efforts by pro-Beijing trolls to manipulate the ranking of content on popular sources of information outside China, including Google's search engine Reddit,and YouTube."
Last year, a major Hoover Institution report issued especially disturbing findings about Beijing's efforts to influence the views (and therefore the votes) of Chinese Americans, including exploiting the potential hostage status of their relatives in China. According to the Hoover researchers:
"Among the Chinese American community, China has long sought to influence -- even silence -- voices critical of the PRC or supportive of Taiwan by dispatching personnel to the United States to pressure these individuals and while also pressuring their relatives in China. Beijing also views Chinese Americans as members of a worldwide Chinese diaspora that presumes them to retain not only an interest in the welfare of China but also a loosely defined cultural, and even political, allegiance to the so-called Motherland."
In addition: "In the American media, China has all but eliminated the plethora of independent Chinese-language media outlets that once served Chinese American communities. It has co-opted existing Chinese language outlets and established its own new outlets."
Operations aimed at Chinese Americans are anything but trivial politically. As of 2018, they represented nearly 2.6 million eligible U.S. voters, and they belonged to an Asian-American super-category that reflects the fastest growing racial and ethnic population of eligible voters in the country.
Most live in heavily Democratic states, like California, New York, and Massachusetts, but significant concentrations are also found in the battleground states where many of the 2016 presidential election margins were razor thin, and many of which look up for grabs this year, like Florida, Georgia, North Carolina, Texas, Michigan, and Pennsylvania.
More broadly, according to the Hoover study:
"In American federal and state politics, China seeks to identify and cultivate rising politicians. Like many other countries, Chinese entities employ prominent lobbying and public relations firms and cooperate with influential civil society groups. These activities complement China's long-standing support of visits to China by members of Congress and their staffs. In some rare instances Beijing has used private citizens and companies to exploit loopholes in US regulations that prohibit direct foreign contributions to elections."
But even more thoroughly overlooked than these narrower forms of Chinese political interference is a broader, much more dangerous type of Chinese meddling that leaves Moscow's efforts in the dust. For example, U.S.-owned multinational companies, which have long profited at the expense of the domestic economy by offshoring production and jobs to China, have just as long carried Beijing's water in American politics through their massive contributions to U.S. political campaigns. The same goes for Wall Street, which hasn't sent many U.S. operations overseas, but which has long hungered for permission to do more business in the Chinese market.
These same big businesses continually and surreptitiously inject their views into American political debates by heavily financing leading think tanks -- which garb their special interest agendas in the raiment of objective scholarship.
Hollywood and the rest of the U.S. entertainment industry has become so determined to brown nose China in search of profits that it's made nearly routine rewriting and censoring material deemed offensive to China.
... ... ...
Alan Tonelson is the founder of RealityChek, a public policy blog focusing on economics and national security, and the author of The Race to the Bottom .
Aug 25, 2020 | www.antiwar.com
Tom Couser Posted on August 20, 2020
I met Strobe Talbott in 1968 when he and I were graduate students at Magdalen College, Oxford. I liked him and respected him, and after we lost touch as friends, I followed his career at Time , the State Department, and the Brookings Institution with admiration. In recent years, however, I've become disillusioned with the foreign policy he advocated with regard to Russia and was disturbed to learn of his involvement in the genesis of the Russiagate narrative.
August 3, 2020
It has been a long time – a very long time – since we've been in touch, but I assume you remember me from 1968, when we met at Magdalen College, Oxford. Having just graduated from Yale, you were there on a Rhodes Scholarship; I was on a Reynold Scholarship granted by my alma mater, Dartmouth. Despite your three-barreled WASP name (Nelson Strobridge Talbott) and your distinguished pedigree (son of a Yale football captain, Hotchkiss alum, etc.) you were unpretentious, and we made friends quickly.
Despite assurances from my draft board that I would not be drafted that year, I got an induction notice on Nixon's inauguration day. You were the first person I consulted. Safe from the draft, like most Rhodes Scholars, you listened sympathetically. We were together in our opposition to the War if not in our vulnerability to the draft.
You and I played the occasional game of squash. And when my Dartmouth fraternity brother and Rhodes Scholar John Isaacson injured your eye with his racket, I visited you in the Radcliffe Infirmary during your convalescence. I was reading Tristram Shandy as part of my program, and one day I read some bits to you. You seemed to share my amusement; I can still see you smiling in your hospital bed with a big patch on one eye. When your father came from Ohio to visit you, he invited me, along with your Yale classmate Rob Johnson out to dinner at the Bear.
You had majored in Russian at Yale and were writing a thesis on some topic in Russian literature, Mayakovsky, perhaps? At any rate, you seemed committed to Russian studies. (Little did I know.) When I chose to take a student tour behind the Iron Curtain during the spring vac, you gave me some reading suggestions and advised me to dress warmly. Having packed for England's relatively mild climate, I lacked a warm enough coat; you generously loaned me your insulated car coat, which served me well in Russia's raw spring cold.
You likely debriefed me after my travels; I must have passed on to you my sense of the Soviet Union as a very drab place with a demoralized, often drunk, population, and a general sense of repression. Which is not to say that I didn't enjoy my trip – just that I was struck by the stark differences at the time between the West and the East. How lucky I was to have been born in the "free world."
The tour returned from Moscow and St. Petersburg via Ukraine and Czechoslovakia. In Prague, just after the brutal suppression of Prague Spring, we were acutely aware of how hated the Russians were. This just reinforced my distaste for what Ronald Reagan later termed the Evil empire – perhaps the only thing he said I ever agreed with. So, like you, I was staunchly anti-Communist at the time.
The next year, you got a gig polishing the text of Nikita Krushchev's memoirs, which had been smuggled out of Russia. The publisher put you up in an "undisclosed location," which you let on was the Commodore Hotel in Cambridge, Massachusetts; we met for coffee in Harvard Square with friends of yours, possibly including Brooke Shearer whom you later married, and one of her brothers, Cody or Derek. It may have been then that I drove you to the school where I was teaching on a deferment, Kimball Union Academy in central New Hampshire; you stayed overnight before returning to civilization.
Your second year, you moved into a house with Bill Clinton and two other Rhodes Scholars.
During the next few years – the early 70s – you and I exchanged occasional letters. After that, the rest is history: your illustrious career – as a journalist at Time , then as a Russia hand and Deputy Secretary of State Department in the Clinton administration, and then as president of the Brookings Institution – was easy to follow in the media.
Eventually our paths diverged, I lost touch with you, with one exception.
In the mid-1990s, while you were serving at State, a close friend asked me to ask you to do her a favor. I hate asking for favors, even for myself, and resent those who use connections to advance themselves. But all my friend needed was for a senior State official to sign off on a job application of some sort. I phoned your office from mine. I got a frosty reception from your administrative assistant, who was justifiably protective of your time, but she put me through. You recognized my voice, sounded glad to be in touch, and granted the favor. It never came to anything, but I remember how pleased I was even to have such a brief task-oriented phone encounter with you after a lapse of two decades.
In any case, over the next several decades I followed your career with interest and was pleased with your success.
As I was by that of another member of the Oxford cohort, Bob Reich, another fraternity brother of mine. We were not close, and I saw him less often in Oxford than I saw you. But you and he both wound up in the Clinton administration – the Oxford troika, I like to call you. You and Bob were doing what Rhodes Scholars were supposed to do: go into professions, network, and perform public service. The Rhodes to success. Never a whiff of scandal about either of you. You, Strobe, were very much what we Dartmouth men referred to as a straight arrow.
So why am I writing you now, after all these years? And why a public letter?
In part, because I have become progressively more critical of the foreign policy that you have advocated. Early on you were advocating disarmament. Good. And closer relations with the Soviet Union. Also good. Indeed, you were regarded as something of a Russophile (never a compliment). But while you initially resisted the expansion of NATO, you eventually went along with it. Like George Kennan, I consider that decision to be a serious mistake (and a breach of a promise not to expand NATO "one inch" to the east after Germany was reunited).
When the Cold War ended, the Warsaw Pact dissolved. NATO did not; instead, it expanded eastward to include former Warsaw Pact members and SSRs until today it borders Russia. Russia resistance to this is inevitably denounced in the West as "Russian aggression." Hence the tension in Ukraine today. You're not personally responsible for all of this of course. But you are deeply implicated in what seems to me a gratuitously provocative, indeed imperialistic, foreign policy.
Two old friends could amicably agree disagree on that, as I disagree with virtually all my liberal friends.
But your loyalty to the Clintons has apparently extended to involvement in generating the Russiagate narrative, which has exacerbated tensions between Russia and the USA and spread paranoia in the Democratic establishment and mainstream media. I am always disturbed by the hypocrisy of Americans who complain about foreign meddling in our elections, when the USA is the undisputed champ in that event. Indeed, we go beyond meddling (Yeltsin's reelection in 1996) to actual coups, not to mention regime-change wars.
My concern about this has come to a head with the recent revelation of your complicity in the dissemination of the Steele dossier, whose subsource, Igor Danchenko, was a Russian national employed by Brookings.
I don't know which is worse: that you and your colleagues at Brookings believed the dossier's unfounded claims, or that you didn't but found it politically useful in the attempt to subvert the Trump campaign and delegitimize his election. I suspect the latter. But doesn't this implicate you in the creation of a powerful Russophobic narrative in contemporary American politics that has demonized Putin and needlessly ramped up tension between two nuclear powers?
A lifelong Democrat who voted for Bill twice and Hillary once, I am no fan of Trump or of Putin. But Russiagate has served as a distraction from Hillary's responsibility for her catastrophic defeat and from the real weaknesses of the neoliberal Democratic Party, with its welfare "reform," crime bill, and abandonment of its traditional working-class base.
Moreover, in and of itself, the Russiagate story represents what Matt Taibbi has called this generation's WMD media scandal. The narrative, challenged from the beginning by a few intrepid independent journalists like Glenn Greenwald, Matt Taibbi, and Aaron Maté, and the Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity, is now being further undermined by the declassification of documents by the Senate. If, as I have recently read, you were active in disseminating the Steele dossier, you have contributed to the mainstream media's gas-lighting of the American public – liberals, at least (like most of my friends). Ironically, then, you have given credence to Trump's often, but not always, false charge: "Fake News." Once described as a Russophile, you now seem complicit in the creation of a nation-wide paranoid and hysterical Russophobia and neo-McCarthyism.
Say it ain't so, Strobe!
So long, old friend,
Aug 24, 2020 | www.unz.com
Half a Pulitzer Prize to the Wall Street Journal RON UNZ AUGUST 23, 2020 1,800 WORDS 11 COMMENTS REPLY Tweet Reddit Share Share Email Print More RSS
For forty years I carefully read the New York Times in hard copy each and every morning, eager to discover what had transpired since the previous day. But just in the last few months, my commitment has begun to flag, and my eyes often only lightly glance at half or more of the articles and their columnar headlines.
I'd never thought much of Donald Trump, but can't seem to work up the enthusiasm to read yet another article headlining the "lies" of our Great Satan or his coterie of lesser Satans. The endless villainies of his Luciferian ally Vladimir Putin have grown dull to my mental tongue. The diabolical wickedness of China, whom Trump had supposedly so recently courted, elicits little interest. Closer to home, my eyes skip over another "social distancing" advice column about Covid-19, or further explanations of how "peaceful protesters" had recently set a government building on fire in Portland, Oregon, or destroyed Chicago's wealthiest downtown shopping district.
The Business Section reports that the worst disease outbreak in a century, the worst unemployment since the Great Depression, and the worst national rioting in two generations has produced unprecedented gains in share prices on Wall Street, but the staff writers have apparently forgotten the word "bubble." Many days the Arts Section seems to have become almost monochromatically black. So my daily regular morning ritual now takes much less time than it did in the past.
I can't exactly plot the trajectory of this sharp drop in my recent interest. But I certainly noticed the change not longer after a Twitter-mob forced the Times to summarily purge for insufficient "wokeness" its highly-regarded Editorial Page Editor, widely considered a leading contender to run the paper, perhaps suggesting that the journalists changed their coverage and writing style to avoid a similar fate. I had always read my morning newspapers at a local coffee-shop, but the Coronavirus outbreak ended that possibility, thereby disrupting my routine. And my years of denouncing the dishonesty of "Our American Pravda" in my own articles may have finally begun to register in my own mind.
There are occasional exceptions to this pattern. Earlier this month the Times carefully tabulated our national mortality figures and determined that our "excess deaths" from early March to the end of July had already exceeded 200,000 , indicating that the American body-count from our Covid-19 epidemic was considerably larger than generally assumed, and might even reach the half million mark by the end of the year. But examples of such solid reporting seem few and far between these days.
The obvious decline of the Times is especially apparent to me each morning when I compare it with the rival Wall Street Journal , which I read immediately afterward. After Rupert Murdoch acquired the Journal in 2007, most observers predicted a sad fate at the hands of the proprietor whose early Fleet Street media empire had been built upon on the frontal nudity of the Page Three Girls of his tabloid Sun . But Murdoch totally confounded those skeptics, providing his new flagship broadsheet with huge financial backing and a hands-off editorial policy, thereby elevating it from a business-focused publication to a near-peer rival to the Gray Lady at a time when so many other papers were about to begin shriveling from massive loss of advertising. Within a couple of years, even such inveterate Murdoch-haters as The Nation acknowledged this surprising reality .
Superb journalist resources unshackled by extreme "political correctness" allow an outstanding product, and this has certainly been demonstrated by the Journal 's regular front-page investigative reports. A few days ago, our continuing Covid-19 disaster prompted yet another of these, which I think lacked only a few crucial elements to be worthy of a Pulitzer Prize.
Numerous publications have documented America's severe mistakes in combating the disease, but this 4,500 word WSJ report focused upon the serious mishandling of the original outbreak by Chinese authorities.
The article revealed that top public health officials at China's Center for Disease Control only became aware of the situation on December 30th, when they learned that at least 25 suspected cases of a mysterious illness had already occurred in Wuhan during that month. But as the writers noted, the outbreak had certainly begun somewhat earlier:
Even a fully empowered China CDC would likely have missed the very first cases of the coronavirus, which probably began spreading around Wuhan in October or November, most likely in people who never showed symptoms, or did but never saw a doctor, researchers say.
All of this new information seems quite consistent with what had previously been discovered by America's leading media outlets. But the Journal writers seem to have missed one additional fact that could have elevated this important story from a mundane investigation to a sensational expose. Although they documented that the Chinese government only learned of the Wuhan outbreak at the end of December, they seemed unaware that more than a month earlier American intelligence officials had distributed a secret report to our military allies describing the "cataclysmic" disease outbreak then underway in Wuhan.
A few months ago, I had noted the clear implications of this bizarre discrepancy in timing:
For obvious reasons, the Trump Administration has become very eager to emphasize the early missteps and delays in the Chinese reaction to the viral outbreak in Wuhan, and has presumably encouraged our media outlets to direct their focus in that direction.
As an example of this, the Associated Press Investigative Unit recently published a rather detailed analysis of those early events purportedly based upon confidential Chinese documents. Provocatively entitled "China Didn't Warn Public of Likely Pandemic for 6 Key Days" , the piece was widely distributed, running in abridged form in the NYT and elsewhere. According to this reconstruction, the Chinese government first became aware of the seriousness of this public health crisis on Jan. 14th, but delayed taking any major action until Jan. 20th, a period of time during which the number of infections greatly multiplied.
Last month, a team of five WSJ reporters produced a very detailed and thorough 4,400 word analysis of the same period, and the NYT has published a helpful timeline of those early events as well. Although there may be some differences of emphasis or minor disagreements, all these American media sources agree that Chinese officials first became aware of the serious viral outbreak in Wuhan in early to mid-January, with the first known death occurring on Jan. 11th, and finally implemented major new public health measures later that same month. No one has apparently disputed these basic facts.
But with the horrific consequences of our own later governmental inaction being obvious, elements within our intelligence agencies have sought to demonstrate that they were not the ones asleep at the switch. Earlier this month, an ABC News story cited four separate government sources to reveal that as far back as late November, a special medical intelligence unit within our Defense Intelligence Agency had produced a report warning that an out-of-control disease epidemic was occurring in the Wuhan area of China, and widely distributed that document throughout the top ranks of our government, warning that steps should be taken to protect US forces based in Asia. After the story aired, a Pentagon spokesman officially denied the existence of that November report, while various other top level government and intelligence officials refused to comment. But a few days later, Israeli television mentioned that in November American intelligence had indeed shared such a report on the Wuhan disease outbreak with its NATO and Israeli allies, thus seeming to independently confirm the complete accuracy of the original ABC News story and its several government sources.
It therefore appears that elements of the Defense Intelligence Agency were aware of the deadly viral outbreak in Wuhan more than a month before any officials in the Chinese government itself. Unless our intelligence agencies have pioneered the technology of precognition, I think this may have happened for the same reason that arsonists have the earliest knowledge of future fires.
An entirely new disease that spreads in silent, asymptomatic fashion can easily escape initial detection, and we should not be surprised that no one in China noticed the Wuhan outbreak when it first began in October or November. But America's intelligence operatives were entirely aware of what was happening from the very beginning, and began informing all our allies. This seems about as close to a "smoking gun" as we can ever likely to encounter in the annals of the murky world of intelligence operations.
Moreover, I have also noted the very unusual international pattern the deadly disease immediately began to follow:
As the coronavirus gradually began to spread beyond China's own borders, another development occurred that greatly multiplied my suspicions. Most of these early cases had occurred exactly where one might expect, among the East Asian countries bordering China. But by late February Iran had become the second epicenter of the global outbreak. Even more surprisingly, its political elites had been especially hard-hit, with a full 10% of the entire Iranian parliament soon infected and at least a dozen of its officials and politicians dying of the disease, including some who were quite senior . Indeed, Neocon activists on Twitter began gleefully noting that their hatred Iranian enemies were now dropping like flies.
Let us consider the implications of these facts. Across the entire world the only political elites that have yet suffered any significant human losses have been those of Iran, and they died at a very early stage, before significant outbreaks had even occurred almost anywhere else in the world outside China. Thus, we have America assassinating Iran's top military commander on Jan. 2nd and then just a few weeks later large portions of the Iranian ruling elites became infected by a mysterious and deadly new virus, with many of them soon dying as a consequence. Could any rational individual possibly regard this as a mere coincidence?
So if the journalists at the WSJ had merely taken note of what had previously been reported by ABC News and confirmed by Israeli television, they would surely have earned themselves a Pulitzer Prize. But earning and receiving are two separate matters, and they might easily have instead been purged for treading upon such touchy national security matters. After all, our own webzine was banned by both Facebook and Google just days after we raised these same matters.
Such retaliation helps explain why our American mainstream media has long since concluded that discretion is the better part of valor.
AnonStarter , says: August 23, 2020 at 9:48 pm GMT
Such retaliation helps explain why our American mainstream media has long since concluded that discretion is the better part of valor.
Rapier-sharp allusion given the context in which it first appeared.
Aug 23, 2020 | www.rt.com
Western celebs & politicians are falling over themselves to condemn racism, yet, Russophobia & Sinophobia remain acceptable Tomasz Pierscionek is a medical doctor and social commentator on medicine, science, and technology. He was previously on the board of the charity Medact and is editor of the London Progressive Journal. 23 Aug, 2020 06:51 Get short URL
Aug 23, 2020 | www.zerohedge.com
Catapulting Russian-Meddling Propaganda
by Tyler Durden Sat, 08/22/2020 - 23:20 Twitter Facebook Reddit Email Print
Authored by Ray McGovern via ConsortiumNews.com,
The New York Times is leading the full-court press to improve on what it regards as Special Counsel Robert Mueller's weak-kneed effort to blame the Russians for giving us Donald Trump...
The fresh orgy of anti-Russian invective in the lickspittle media (LSM) has the feel of fin de siècle . The last four reality-impaired years do seem as though they add up to a century. And no definitive fin is in sight, as long as most people don't know what's going on.
The LSM should be confronted: "At long last have you left no sense of decency?" But who would hear the question -- much less any answer? The corporate media have a lock on what Americans are permitted or not permitted to hear. Checking the truth, once routine in journalism, is a thing of the past.
Thus the reckless abandon with which The New York Times is leading the current full-court press to improve on what it regards as Special Counsel Robert Mueller's weak-kneed effort to blame the Russians for giving us Donald Trump. The press is on, and there are no referees to call the fouls.
The recent release of a 1,000-page, sans bombshells and already out-of-date report by the Senate Intelligence Committee has provided the occasion to "catapult the propaganda," as President George W. Bush once put it.
As the the Times 's Mark Mazzetti put it in his article Wednesday:
"Releasing the report less than 100 days before Election Day, Republican-majority senators hoped it would refocus attention on the interference by Russia and other hostile foreign powers in the American political process, which has continued unabated."
Mazzetti is telling his readers, soto voce : regarding that interference four years ago, and the "continued-unabated" part, you just have to trust us and our intelligence community sources who would never lie to you. And if, nevertheless, you persist in asking for actual evidence, you are clearly in Putin's pocket.
Incidentally, Mueller's report apparently was insufficient, only two years in the making, and just 448 pages. The Senate committee's magnum opus took three years, is almost 1,000 pages -- and fortified. So there.Iron Pills
Recall how disappointed the LSM and the rest of the Establishment were with Mueller's anemic findings in spring 2019. His report claimed that the Russian government "interfered in the 2016 presidential election in sweeping and systematic fashion" via a social media campaign run by the Internet Research Agency (IRA) and by "hacking" Democratic emails. But the evidence behind those charges could not bear close scrutiny.
You would hardly know it from the LSM, but the accusation against the IRA was thrown out of court when the U.S. government admitted it could not prove that the IRA was working for the Russian government. Mueller's ipse dixit did not suffice, as we explained a year ago in "Sic Transit Gloria Mueller."The Best Defense
is a good offense, and the Senate Intelligence Committee's release of its study -- call it "Mueller (Enhanced)" -- and the propaganda fanfare -- come at a key point in the Russiagate/Spygate imbroglio. It also came, curiously, as the Democratic Convention was beginning, as if the Republican-controlled Senate was sending Trump a message.
One chief worry, of course, derives from the uncertainty as to whether John Durham, the US Attorney investigating those FBI and other officials who launched the Trump-Russia investigation will let some heavy shoes drop before the election. Barr has said he expects "developments in Durham's investigation hopefully before the end of the summer."
FBI attorney Kevin Clinesmith already has decided to plead guilty to the felony of falsifying evidence used to support a warrant from the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court to surveillance to spy on Trump associate Carter Page. It is abundantly clear that Clinesmith was just a small cog in the deep-state machine in action against candidate and then President Trump. And those running the machine are well known. The president has named names, and Barr has made no bones about his disdain for what he calls spying on the president.
The cognoscenti and the big fish themselves may be guessing that Trump/Barr/Durham will not throw out heavier lines for former FBI Director James Comey, his deputy Andrew McCabe, CIA Director John Brennan, and Director of National Intelligence James Clapper, for example. But how can they be sure? What has become clear is that the certainty they all shared that Hillary Clinton would be the next president prompted them not only to take serious liberties with the Constitution and the law, but also to do so without taking rudimentary steps to hide their tracks.
The incriminating evidence is there. And as Trump becomes more and more vulnerable and defensive about his ineptness -- particularly with regard to Covid-19 -- he may summon the courage to order Barr and Durham to hook the big fish, not just minnows like Clinesmith. The neuralgic reality is that no one knows at this point how far Trump will go. To say that this kind of uncertainty is unsettling to all concerned is to say the obvious.
So, the stakes are high -- for the Democrats, as well -- and, not least, the LSM. In these circumstances it would seem imperative not just to circle the wagons but to mount the best offense/defense possible, despite the fact that virtually all the ammunition (as in the Senate report) is familiar and stale ("enhanced" or not).
Black eyes might well be in store for the very top former law enforcement and intelligence officials, the Democrats, and the LSM -- and in the key pre-election period. So, the calculation: launch "Mueller Report (Enhanced)" and catapult the truth now with propaganda, before it is too late.No Evidence of Hacking
The "hacking of the DNC" charge suffered a fatal blow three months ago when it became known that Shawn Henry, president of the DNC-hired cyber-security firm CrowdStrike, admitted under oath that his firm had no evidence that the DNC emails were hacked -- by Russia or anyone else.
Henry gave his testimony on Dec. 5, 2017, but House Intelligence Committee chair Adam Schiff was able to keep it hidden until May 7, 2020.
Here's a brief taste of how Henry's testimony went: Asked by Schiff for "the date on which the Russians exfiltrated the data", Henry replied, "We just don't have the evidence that says it actually left."
You did not know that? You may be forgiven -- up until now -- if your information diet is limited to the LSM and you believe The New York Times still publishes "all the news that's fit to print." I am taking bets on how much longer the NYT will be able to keep Henry's testimony hidden; Schiff's record of 29 months will be hard to beat.Putting Lipstick on the Pig of Russian 'Tampering'
Worse still for the LSM and other Russiagate diehards, Mueller's findings last year enabled Trump to shout "No Collusion" with Russia. What seems clear at this point is that a key objective of the current catapulting of the truth is to apply lipstick to Mueller's findings.
After all, he was supposed to find treacherous plotting between the Trump campaign and the Russians and failed miserably. Most LSM-suffused Americans remain blissfully unaware of this, and the likes of Pulitzer Prize winner Mazzetti have been commissioned to keep it that way.
In Wednesday's article , for example, Mazzetti puts it somewhat plaintively:
"Like the special counsel the Senate report did not conclude that the Trump campaign engaged in a coordinated conspiracy with the Russian government -- a fact that the Republicans seized on to argue that there was 'no collusion'."
How could they!
Mazzetti is playing with words. "Collusion," however one defines it, is not a crime; conspiracy is.'Breathtaking' Contacts: Mueller (Enhanced)
Mark Mazzetti (YouTube)
Mazzetti emphasizes that the Senate report "showed extensive evidence of contacts between Trump campaign advisers and people tied to the Kremlin," and Sen. Mark Warner (D-VA), the intelligence committee's vice chairman, said the committee report details "a breathtaking level of contacts between Trump officials and Russian government operatives that is a very real counterintelligence threat to our elections."
None of that takes us much beyond the Mueller report and other things generally well known -- even in the LSM. Nor does the drivel about people like Paul Manafort "sharing polling data with Russians" who might be intelligence officers. That data was "mostly public" the Times itself reported , and the paper had to correct a story that the data was intended for Russian oligarchs, when it was meant for Ukrainian oligarchs instead. That Manafort was working to turn Ukraine towards the West and not Russia is rarely mentioned.
Recent revelations regarding the false data given the FISA court by an FBI lawyer to "justify" eavesdropping on Trump associate Carter Page show the Senate report to be not up to date and misguided in endorsing the FBI's decision to investigate Page. The committee may wish to revisit that endorsement -- at least.
On the Steele Dossier, the committee also missed a ruling by a British judge against Christopher Steele, labeling his dossier an attempt to help Hillary Clinton get elected. Consortium News explained back in October 2017 that both CrowdStrike and Steele were paid for by the Democratic Party and Clinton campaign to push Russiagate.
Also missed by the intelligence committee was a document released by the Senate Judiciary Committee last month that revealed that Steele's "Primary Subsource and his friends peddled warmed-over rumors and laughable gossip that Steele dressed up as formal intelligence memos."Smearing WikiLeaks
The Intelligence Committee report also repeats thoroughly debunked myths about WikiLeaks and, like Mueller, the committee made no effort to interview Julian Assange before launching its smears. Italian journalist Stefania Maurizi, who partnered with WikiLeaks in the publication of the Podesta emails, described the report's treatment of WikiLeaks in this Twitter thread :Titillating
2. the description of #WikiLeaks ' publishing activities by this #SenateIntelligenceCommittee 's Report appears a true #EdgarHoover 's disinformation campaign to make a legitimate media org completely radioactive
3. Clearly, to describe #WikiLeaks and its publishing activities the #SenateIntelligenceCommittee's Report completely rely on #US intelligence community+ #MikePompeo's characterisation of #WikiLeaks. There is not even any pretense of an independent approach
4. there are also unsubstantiated claims like:
– "[WikiLeaks'] disclosures have jeopardized the safety of individual Americans and foreign allies" (p.200)
– "WikiLeaks has passed information to U.S. adversaries" (p.201)
5. it's completely false that "#WikiLeaks does not seem to weigh whether its disclosures add any public interest value" (p.200) and any longtime media partner like me could provide you dozens of examples on how wrong this characterisation [is].
Mazzetti did add some spice to the version of his article that dominated the two top right columns of Wednesday's Times with the blaring headline: "Senate Panel Ties Russian Officials to Trump's Aides: G.O.P.-Led Committee Echoes Mueller's Findings on Election Tampering."
Those who make it to the end of Mazzetti's piece will learn that the Senate committee report "did not establish" that the Russian government obtained any compromising material on Mr. Trump or that they tried to use such materials [that they didn't have] as leverage against him." However, Mazzetti adds,
"According to the report, Mr. Trump met a former Miss Moscow at a party during one trip in 1996. After the party, a Trump associate told others he had seen Mr. Trump with the woman on multiple occasions and that they 'might have had a brief romantic relationship.'
"The report also raised the possibility that, during that trip, Mr. Trump spent the night with two young women who joined him the next morning at a business meeting with the mayor of Moscow."
This is journalism?Another Pulitzer in Store?
The Times appends a note reminding us that Mazzetti was part of a team that won a Pulitzer Prize in 2018 for reporting on Donald Trump's advisers and their connections to Russia.
And that's not the half of it. In September 2018, Mazzetti and his NYT colleague Scott Shane wrote a 10,000-word feature, "The Plot to Subvert an Election," trying to convince readers that the Russian Internet Research Agency (IRA) had successfully swayed U.S. opinion during the 2016 election with 80,000 Facebook posts that they said had reached 126 million Americans.
That turned out to be a grotesquely deceptive claim. Mazzetti and Shane failed to mention the fact that those 80,000 IRA posts (from early 2015 through 2017, meaning about half came after the election), had been engulfed in a vast ocean of more than 33 trillion Facebook posts in people's news feeds – 413 million times more than the IRA posts. Not to mention the lack of evidence that the IRA was the Russian government, as Mueller claimed.
In exposing that chicanery, prize-winning investigative reporter Gareth Porter commented :Nothingburgers With Russian Dressing: the Backstory
"The descent of The New York Times into this unprecedented level of propagandizing for the narrative of Russia's threat to U.S. democracy is dramatic evidence of a broader problem of abuses by corporate media Greater awareness of the dishonesty at the heart of the Times' coverage of that issue is a key to leveraging media reform and political change."
The late Robert Parry.
"It's too much; it's just too much, too much", a sedated, semi-conscious Robert Parry kept telling me from his hospital bed in late January 2018 a couple of days before he died. Bob was founder of Consortium News .
It was already clear what Bob meant; he had taken care to see to that. On Dec. 31, 2017 the reason for saying that came in what he titled "An Apology & Explanation" for "spotty production in recent days." A stroke on Christmas Eve had left Bob with impaired vision, but he was able to summon enough strength to write an Apologia -- his vision for honest journalism and his dismay at what had happened to his profession before he died on Jan. 27, 2018. The dichotomy was "just too much".
Parry rued the role that journalism was playing in the "unrelenting ugliness that has become Official Washington. Facts and logic no longer mattered. It was a case of using whatever you had to diminish and destroy your opponent this loss of objective standards reached deeply into the most prestigious halls of American media."
What bothered Bob most was the needless, dishonest tweaking of the Russian bear. "The U.S. media's approach to Russia," he wrote, "is now virtually 100 percent propaganda. Does any sentient human being read The New York Times ' or The Washington Post 's coverage of Russia and think that he or she is getting a neutral or unbiased treatment of the facts? Western journalists now apparently see it as their patriotic duty to hide facts that otherwise would undermine the demonizing of Putin and Russia."
Parry, who was no conservative, continued:
"Liberals are embracing every negative claim about Russia just because elements of the CIA, FBI and National Security Agency produced a report last Jan. 6 that blamed Russia for 'hacking' Democratic emails and releasing them to WikiLeaks ."
Bob noted that the 'hand-picked' authors "evinced no evidence and even admitted that they weren't asserting any of this as fact."
It was just too much.Robert Parry's Last Article
Peter Strzok during congressional hearing in July 2018. (Wikimedia Commons)
Bob posted his last substantive article on Dec. 13, 2017, the day after text exchanges between senior FBI officials Peter Strzok and Lisa Page were made public. (Typically, readers of The New York Times the following day would altogether miss the importance of the text-exchanges.)
Bob Parry rarely felt any need for a "sanity check." Dec. 12, 2017 was an exception. He called me about the Strzok-Page texts; we agreed they were explosive. FBI Agent Peter Strzok was on Special Counsel Robert Mueller's staff investigating alleged Russian interference, until Mueller removed him.
Strzok reportedly was a "hand-picked" FBI agent taking part in the Jan 2017 evidence-impoverished, rump, misnomered "intelligence community" assessment that blamed Russia for hacking and other election meddling. And he had helped lead the investigation into Hillary Clinton's misuse of her computer servers. Page was Deputy Director Andrew McCabe's right-hand lawyer.
His Dec. 13, 2017 piece would be his fourth related article in less than two weeks; it turned out to be his last substantive article. All three of the earlier ones are worth a re-read as examples of fearless, unbiased, perceptive journalism. Here are the links .
Bob began his article on the Strzok-Page bombshell:
"The disclosure of fiercely anti-Trump text messages between two romantically involved senior FBI officials who played key roles in the early Russia-gate inquiry has turned the supposed Russian-election-meddling "scandal" int