Softpanorama

Home Switchboard Unix Administration Red Hat TCP/IP Networks Neoliberalism Toxic Managers
May the source be with you, but remember the KISS principle ;-)
Bigger doesn't imply better. Bigger often is a sign of obesity, of lost control, of overcomplexity, of cancerous cells

Demonization of Putin

Reuters/David W Cerny

PseudoScience > Who Rules America > Pathological Russophobia of the US elite

News Propaganda: Journalism Vacation from Truth Recommended Links DNC emails leak: switfboating Bernie Sanders and blaming Vladimir Putin Hillary Clinton email scandal: Timeline and summary  Who Shot down Malaysian flight MH17?
Anti-Russian hysteria in connection emailgate and DNC leak Fake News scare and US NeoMcCartyism Neoliberalism as a New Form of Corporatism Putin-did-it fiasco: Obama repeat Bush's WMD fiasco Neocon foreign policy is a disaster for the USA Trump vs. Deep State
Color revolutions Anti Trump Hysteria US and British media are servants of security apparatus American Imperialism, Transnational Capitalist Class and Globalization of Capitalism Anatol Leiven on American Messianism Inside "democracy promotion" hypocrisy fair
Pussi Riot Provocation MSM Sochi Bashing Rampage "Fuck the EU": neocons show EU its real place Robert Kagan Wolfowitz Doctrine Hillary "Warmonger" Clinton
Russian Doping Scandal Khodorkovsky case Boris Berezovsky Magnitsky case Navalny's Saga Underground millionaire Koreyko -- Navalny Humor
Hillary role in Syria bloodbath Hillary the warmonger Corruption smoke screen Miraculous metamorphosis of Russian crooks on crossing Western border Russian experience in "white Revolution" of 2011-2012 Patterns of Propaganda
British hypocrisy Soft propaganda The Real War on Reality Russophobic quotes from famous Russian Liberasts Humor Etc

Europe has manufactured an artificial "Russian enemy"
 in order to create an artificial "European identity"

Guy Mettan

Demonization of Putin is integral part of policy of the US and British elite toward Russia, designed to weaken, and, if possible, dismember the Russian state. It is also an instrument of increasing national unity by creating a demonized external enemy.

Russophobia of the US elite should be understood in the context of Neoliberalism as a New Form of Corporatism as Russia represent an obstacle for complete domination of the globe by the US neoliberal empire. Nothing personal here, just business. Recent statements by Putin made at Valday club in Sochi (October 24, 2014) also do not produce any love to Putin from the global and first of all the USA neoliberal elite as well as London-based financial oligarchy. Not accidentally for both the US and GB elite Putin is a "Great Satan".

Like anti-Semitism, Russophobia is based on standard mechanism of Demonization (Wikipedia):

In colloquial usage, the term demonization is used metaphorically to refer to propaganda directed on delitimization of particular individual or group.

Delegitimization is the psychological process which undermines or marginalizes an individual or entity by presenting value judgments as facts which are construed to devalue legitimacy. The ultimate goal of justifying harm or war.

The concept applies to a wide spectrum of social contexts but generally means categorization of individual or groups into extreme social categories which are ultimately excluded from society. Delegitimization provides the moral and the discursive basis to harm the delegitimized group, even in the most inhumane ways.

It is related to stereotyping in a sense that it leads to prejudice when people emotionally react to the name of the person, ascribe evil intention and characteristic to the person or group without evaluating objective evidence.

As always in such cases three-letter agencies are in the vanguard of such complains (Is the CIA Running a Defamation Campaign Against Putin - Russia Insider)

A major topic in the Russian media is mystification with how Putin is portrayed in the Western media. Wildly popular at home, and seen as a decent, modest, an admirable person, and Russians don't understand how there can be such a disconnect with Western impressions.

Recently, leading Russian commentators and politicians have been suggesting that this can only be explained by a deliberate campaign to defame Putin, by governments or other groups.

Yesterday, at a briefing to foreign journalists, Sergey Ivanov, Putin's chief of staff, arguably the 2nd most powerful man in Russia, spoke of an "information war" consisting of "personal attacks" on Putin.

The western media hit a new low...
>The day before another member of Putin's inner circle, Vyasheslav Volodin, made similar remarks, telling foreign journalists "an attack on Putin is an attack on Russia."

The logic, they argue, is that by defaming the leader of a country, you weaken his power domestically by undermining popular support for him, and internationally, by rallying popular opinion to support policies against that country. The ultimate goal, they argue, is to weaken the country itself. They also talk about regime change.

They argue that if one looks at the facts, that there is evidence of ongoing character assassination which cannot be explained by a vague popular zeitgeist in the West, but is more likely the result of a dedicated effort to introduce this defamation into the news flow.

Newsweek has been one of the most virulent Putin-bashers for years

The issue of manipulation of news by intelligence services has been in the news recently with revelations that the CIA and German Secret Service (GSS) have long-running programs to influence how media executives and top journalists convey and interpret the news, including direct cash payments.

Here are some examples they point to:

RI sat down with The Saker, a leading analyst of Russia in international affairs, and asked him what he thinks:

So, is there any credence to this line of thinking, or is this conspiracy theorists running wild?

There is no doubt in my mind whatsoever that the US is waging a major psyop war against Russia, although not a shooting war, for now, and that what we are seeing is a targeted campaign to discredit Putin and achieve "regime change" in Russia or, should that fail, at the very least "regime weakening" and "Russia weakening".

And the Economist has been the very worst of them all...

So this is a US government program?

Yes, Putin is absolutely hated by certain factions in the US government two main reasons:

1. He partially, but not fully, restored Russia's sovereignty which under Gorbachev and Yeltsin had been totally lost … Russia then was a US colony like Ukraine is today … and,

2. He dared to openly defy the USA and its civilizational model.

… a free and sovereign Russia is perceived by the US "deep state" as an existential threat which has to be crushed. … this is a full-scale political assault on Russia and Putin personally.

So what the Russians are saying, that the constant personal attacks against Putin in the global media are partly the result of deliberate efforts by US intelligence services, … basically, planted stories…

Yes, absolutely

It seems like “Operation Mockingbird” all over again… Are you aware of other instances aimed at Putin?

(Editors Note: Operation Mockingbird was a CIA program started in the 1950s to influence the US media, which was gradually exposed by investigative journalists starting in the late 60s, culminating in sensational televised congressional hearings in 1975 which shocked the nation, forcing the program’s termination. Critics maintain that the same tactics have continued since, under different programs. Wikipedia)

Yes, of course. Since this defamation has very little traction with the Russian public … Putin's popularity is higher than ever before .., there is an organized campaign to convince them that Putin is "selling out" Novorussia, that he is a puppet of oligarchs who are making deals with Ukrainian oligarchs to back-stab the Novorussian resistance…

… So far, Putin's policies in the Ukraine have enjoyed very strong support from the Russian people who still oppose an overt military intervention…

… but if Kiev attacks Novorussia again - which appears very likely - and if such an attack is successful - which is less likely but always possible - then Putin will be blamed for having given the Ukrainians the time to regroup and reorganize.

Warm and fuzzy...

So you are saying that if the Ukrainian military strengthens its position enough to deliver a serious blow to the East Ukrainians, the US can use this as a method to strike at Putin’s support base…

Yes, that’s right ... there are a lot of "fake patriots" in Russia and abroad who will reject any negotiated solution and who will present any compromise as a "betrayal". They are the "useful idiots" used by western special services to smear and undermine Putin.

Is it limited to government special ops, or are there other groups who might have an interest in doing this?

Yes, well here is something that most people in the west don’t appreciate… there is a major behind-the scenes struggle among Russian elites between what I call the "Eurasian Sovereignists" (basically, those who support Putin) and what I call the "Atlantic Integrationists" (those whom Putin refers to as the "5th column).

The western media talks about this as the struggle between Russian liberals and conservatives, reformers and reactionaries, right?

Well its sort of like that, but not exactly…

The former see Russia's future in the Russian North and East and want to turn Russia towards Asia, Latin America and the rest of the world, while the latter want Russia to become part of the "North Atlantic" power configuration.

The Atlantic Integrationists are now too weak to openly challenge Putin - whose real power base is his immense popular support - but they are quietly sabotaging his efforts to reform Russia while supporting anti-Putin campaigns.

Regarding the revelations of CIA activities in Germany, do you think this is going on in other countries, in the US?

I am sure that this is happening in most countries worldwide. The very nature of the modern corporate media is such that it makes journalists corrupt.

As the French philosopher Alain Soral says "nowadays a reporter is either unemployed or a prostitute". There are, of course, a few exceptions, but by and large this is true.

This is not to say that most journalists are on the take. In the West this is mostly done in a more subtle way - by making it clear which ideas do or do not pass the editorial control, by lavishly rewarding those journalists who 'get it' and by quietly turning away those who don't.

If a journalist or reporter commits the crime of "crimethink" he or she will be sidelined and soon out of work.

There is no real pluralism in the West where the boundaries of what can be said or not are very strictly fixed.

Ok, but is it like what has been revealed in Germany, …similar specific operational programs in France, the UK, Italy, Latin America, etc.

Yes, one has to assume so – it is in their interests to have them and there is no reason for them not to.

As for the CIA, it de-facto controls enough of the corporate media to "set the tone". As somebody who in the past used to read the Soviet press for a living, I can sincerely say that it was far more honest and more pluralistic than the press in the USA or EU today.

Joseph Goebbels or Edward Bernays could not have imagined the degree of sophistication of modern propaganda machines.

If the US is doing it, can't one assume other governments are too? Are the Russians doing it against western leaders?

I think that all governments try to do that kind of stuff. However, what makes the US so unique it a combination of truly phenomenal arrogance and multi-billion dollar budgets.

The US "deep state" owns the western corporate media which is by far the most powerful media on the planet. Most governments can only do that inside their own country ... to smear a political opponent or discredit a public figure, but they simply do not have the resources to mount an international strategic psyop campaign. This is something only the US can do.

So foreign governments are at a great disadvantage in this arena vis-a-vis the US?

Absolutely.

Quotes from Putin speech and answers to the questions at the meeting of the Valdai International Discussion Club

 


Top Visited
Switchboard
Latest
Past week
Past month

NEWS CONTENTS

Old News ;-)

Home 2018 2017 2016 2015 2014 2011

For the list of top articles see Recommended Links section

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

Nov 12, 2018 | www.zerohedge.com

All Risk No Reward , 52 seconds ago link

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

Preach!

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

BitchesBetterRecognize , 14 minutes ago link

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

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

Golden Showers , 21 minutes ago link

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Hubbs , 22 minutes ago link

A quiet tribute to the Vets from Dire Straits

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

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

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

@3:16

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

Be very careful and informed before joining the military.

Mike Rotsch , 42 minutes ago link

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

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

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

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

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

Buddha 71 , 43 minutes ago link

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

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

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

vic and blood , 43 minutes ago link

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

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

vic and blood , 51 minutes ago link

No more wars for Zionists.

punchasocialist , 56 minutes ago link

Happy 99th ARMISTICE DAY everyone!

kudocast , 1 hour ago link

http://www.untoldhistory.com

LeadPipeDreams , 1 hour ago link

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

hangemhigh77 , 1 hour ago link

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

khnum , 1 hour ago link

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

warpigs , 50 minutes ago link

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

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

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

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

Overfed , 5 minutes ago link

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

halcyon , 2 minutes ago link

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

kudocast , 56 minutes ago link

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

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

They look like a bunch of Nazis.

hangemhigh77 , 1 hour ago link

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

LightBulb18 , 1 hour ago link

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

stonedogz , 1 hour ago link

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

minionz1 , 1 hour ago link

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

Oldwood , 1 hour ago link

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

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

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

halcyon , 3 minutes ago link

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

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

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

PuttingIsLikeWisdom , 1 hour ago link

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

OZZIDOWNUNDER , 1 hour ago link

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

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

minionz1 , 1 hour ago link

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

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

Pooper Popper , 1 hour ago link

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

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

Hmmmmmmmmmm?

WWG1
WGA

DarthVaderMentor , 1 hour ago link

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

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

Blue Boat , 1 hour ago link

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

Handful of Dust , 1 hour ago link

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

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

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

kudocast , 1 hour ago link

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

FrankieGoesToHollywood , 1 hour ago link

Thank you veterans for the cheap oil.

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

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

Authored by Caitlin Johnstone via Medium.com,

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

* * *

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

Bitcoin donations:1Ac7PCQXoQoLA9Sh8fhAgiU3PHA2EX5Zm2

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

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

Wnt1a month ago

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Maxwell dmorista8 months ago
Superb post.

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

[Nov 11, 2018] The Unraveling of the Netanyahu Project for the Middle East

Notable quotes:
"... Washington Post ..."
"... Washington Post ..."
Nov 11, 2018 | theduran.com

There has been, from the outset, a second level , too: This entire 'inverted pyramid' of Middle East engineering had, as its single point of departure, Mohammed bin Salman (MbS). It was Jared Kushner, the Washington Post reports , who "championed Mohammed as a reformer poised to usher the ultraconservative, oil-rich monarchy into modernity. Kushner privately argued for months, last year, that Mohammed would be key to crafting a Middle East peace plan, and that with the prince's blessing, much of the Arab world would follow". It was Kushner, the Post continued, "who pushed his father-in-law to make his first foreign trip as president to Riyadh, against objections from then-Secretary of State Rex Tillerson – and warnings from Defense Secretary Jim Mattis".

Well, now MbS has, in one form or another, been implicated in the Khashoggi murder. Bruce Riedel of Brookings, a longtime Saudi observer and former senior CIA & US defence official, notes , "for the first time in 50 years, the kingdom has become a force for instability" (rather than stability in the region), and suggests that there is an element of 'buyer's remorse' now evident in parts of Washington.

The 'seamless office process' to which the Israeli official referred with Caspit, is known as 'stovepiping', which is when a foreign state's policy advocacy and intelligence are passed straight to a President's ear – omitting official Washington from the 'loop'; by-passing any US oversight; and removing the opportunity for officials to advise on its content. Well, this has now resulted in the Khashoggi strategic blunder. And this, of course, comes in the wake of earlier strategic 'mistakes': the Yemen war, the siege of Qatar, the Hariri abduction, the Ritz-Carlton princely shakedowns.

To remedy this lacuna, an 'uncle' (Prince Ahmad bin Abdel Aziz) has been dispatched from exile in the West to Riyadh (with security guarantees from the US and UK intelligences services) to bring order into these unruly affairs, and to institute some checks and balances into the MbS coterie of advisers, so as to prevent further impetuous 'mistakes'. It seems too, that the US Congress wants the Yemen war, which Prince Ahmad consistently has opposed (as he opposed MbS elevation as Crown Prince), stopped. (General Mattis has called for a ceasefire within 30 days.) It is a step toward repairing the Kingdom's image.

MbS remains – for now – as Crown Prince. President Sisi and Prime Minister Netanyahu both have expressed their support for MbS and "as U.S. officials contemplate a more robust response [to the Khashoggi killing], Kushner has emphasized the importance of the U.S.-Saudi alliance in the region", the Washington Post reports . MbS' Uncle (who as a son of King Abdel Aziz, under the traditional succession system, would be himself in line for the throne), no doubt hopes to try to undo some of the damage done to the standing of the al-Saud family, and to that of the Kingdom. Will he succeed? Will MbS accede now to Ahmad unscrambling the very centralisation of power that made MbS so many enemies, in the first place, to achieve it? Has the al-Saud family the will , or are they too disconcerted by events?

And might President Erdogan throw more wrenches into this delicate process by further leaking evidence Turkey has, if Washington does not attend sufficiently to his demands. Erdogan seems ready to pitch for the return of Ottoman leadership for the Sunni world, and likely still holds some high-value cards up his sleeve (such as intercepts of phone calls between the murder cell and Riyadh). These cards though are devaluing as the news cycle shifts to the US mid-terms.

Time will tell, but it is this nexus of uncertain dynamics to which Bruce Reidel refers, when he talks of 'instability' in Saudi Arabia . The question posed here, though, is how might these events affect Netanyahu's and MbS' 'war' on Iran?

May 2018 now seems a distant era. Trump is still the same 'Trump', but Putin is not the same Putin. The Russian Defence Establishment has weighed in with their President to express their displeasure at Israeli air strikes on Syria – purportedly targeting Iranian forces in Syria. The Russian Defence Ministry too, has enveloped Syria in a belt of missiles and electronic disabling systems across the Syrian airspace. Politically, the situation has changed too: Germany and France have joined the Astana Process for Syria. Europe wants Syrian refugees to return home, and that translates into Europe demanding stability in Syria. Some Gulf States too, have tentatively begun normalising with the Syrian state.

The Americans are still in Syria; but a newly invigorated Erdogan (after the release of the US pastor, and with all the Khashoggi cards, produced by Turkish intelligence, in his pocket), intends to crush the Kurdish project in north and eastern Syria, espoused by Israel and the US. MbS, who was funding this project, on behalf of US and Israel, will cease his involvement (as a part of the demands made by Erdogan over the Khashoggi murder). Washington too wants the Yemen war, which was intended to serve as Iran's 'quagmire', to end forthwith. And Washington wants the attrition of Qatar to stop, too.

These represent major unravelings of the Netanyahu project for the Middle East, but most significant are two further setbacks: namely, the loss of Netanyahu's and MbS' stovepipe to Trump, via Jared Kushner, by-passing all America's own system of 'checks and balances'. The Kushner 'stovepipe' neither forewarned Washington of coming 'mistakes', nor was Kushner able to prevent them. Both Congress and the Intelligences Services of the US and UK are already elbowing into these affairs. They are not MbS fans. It is no secret that Prince Mohamed bin Naif was their man (he is still under 'palace arrest').

Trump will still hope to continue his 'Iran project' and his Deal of the Century between Israel and the Palestinians (led nominally by Saudi Arabia herding together the Sunni world , behind it). Trump does not seek war with Iran, but rather is convinced of a popular uprising in Iran that will topple the state.

[Nov 09, 2018] Sic Semper Tyrannis

Nov 09, 2018 | turcopolier.typepad.com

RUSSIAN FEDERATION SITREP 8 NOVEMBER 2018 (by Patrick Armstrong)

Russian flag

US ELECTION. The chance of war has gone up a bit: the House investigation into the conspiracy will stop (unless Nunes can do anything in the next two months) and go into reverse. Any move Trump makes towards improving relations with Russia will be met by the House shrieking he's a Putin puppet: the new people in charge there are too heavily invested in the Russia story to stop now. The US political system will be seized up – lots and lots of investigations . Threats and counter threats . Not such a bad thing for the rest of us if the US system turns into a cannibal banquet but further ratcheting up the anti-Russia hysteria is not so good ( top priority says Schiff ). (A Chinese view of increased danger ).

COINCIDENCE? 25 October 2018, China : "concentrate preparations for fighting a war". 26 October 2018, Russia : "Yes, Russia is preparing for war". They hear what's said ; they see what's happening in their neighbourhoods. They draw conclusions and take steps.

TODAY'S THOUGHT. " In light of this very low level of military competence, maybe wars are not our best choice of hobby. "

THE MOTHERLAND CALLS. A Russian diplomat says Russian exiles are returning . I can believe it: they moved West for security or better money; as Russophobia intensifies (see below) it's not safer and maybe the money's not so good after all. I expect to see a steady trickle of returnees.

NUGGETS FROM THE STUPIDITY MINE. " Half of the Russians in London are spies, claims new report ". (But why not all of them? They're Russians, after all, and should shut up and go away .) That's 75 thousand Russian spies. Wow! And the report says there are only 200 case officers to handle them. But that's nothing for Putin's superhuman minions: they threw the US election with 80K FB posts buried among 33 trillion posts (that's about half a billion others to every "Russian" post). They control time: they arrived in Gatwick at 1500 on a flight scheduled to arrive at 1545 that actually arrived at 1558 . (Gotta be pretty stupid or inattentive to swallow this nonsense.)

SWIFT. Is a network linking banks around the world enabling transactions to move around easily and securely. US-dominated, it was used because it worked. But once Washington turned it into a weapon against Iran in 2012 (and again just now ), it stopped being so convenient. It's not fantastically complicated to replicate, SWIFT was used because it was expedient. But, if you're on Washington's hitlist, or fear you may be, it's not so attractive. So Moscow, which is on the hitlist, has developed its own system and is linking other countries to it . It's the same thing with the " petrodollar ": useful until Washington weaponised it; then time to find an alternative . And, when you must, you will: Delhi will pay for its S400s in rubles ; Iran has turned off transponders on its tankers ; Hungary upped its gold reserves (and so did Russia – now 17% of FOREX ). The SWIFT story is an interesting demonstration of the fact that, sometimes, using it can mean losing it .

EUROPEANS ARE REVOLTING. M acron calls for real European armed forces and Europe continues to be rebellious about Washington's stance on Iran (new sanctions imposed – but with waivers to its oil customers. But not for the EU). Ah well, talk is cheap – especially in the EU – and there are formidable problems creating a European army – a new report shows the stunning incapacity of the German forces. They would have to completely rethink the Russia relationship then find the mountains of money to build up their forces, support elements and supply chains. Today Europe relies on the US to provide all these things. The US military, in its turn, as a new report shows , depends on foreign suppliers or a single struggling domestic manufacturer for several hundred key inputs... (NATO should meditate on being a little less demanding , don't you think?) But the Istanbul meeting did show a refreshing independence from Paris and Berlin. It's rather like the SWIFT story: they went along with the USA because it was easy and it worked well enough. But it's no longer easy and it doesn't work so well.

SYRIA. While the Russia-Turkey-France-Germany meeting on Syria in Istanbul did not settle all issues, or maybe even any issue , it was momentous because of no USA and the end of the "Assad must go" magical spell . Moscow continues to give us lessons on how to blend military power with diplomatic skill. Meanwhile, in Syria, demonstrating the opposite, we see US-backed forces fighting Turkey . As I wrote three years ago, it's not hard to see why Moscow runs rings around Washington here and elsewhere . The midterms will probably put Washington back to недоговороспособность : no agreement possible either because it can't make one or won't keep it.

© Patrick Armstrong Analysis, Canada Russia Observer

[Nov 09, 2018] Trump What A Stupid Question That Is. You Ask A Lot Of Stupid Questions

Notable quotes:
"... Trump wasn't finished, however, and during the same gaggle, he suggested he could pull press credentials from other reporters who don't show him "respect" two days after the president suspended the press pass of CNN chief White House correspondent Jim Acosta after a contentious exchange during a news conference. ..."
"... "I think Jim Acosta is a very unprofessional man," Trump explained and when asked how long Acosta's credentials will be suspended, the president replied: "As far as I'm concerned, I haven't made that decision. But it could be others also." ..."
"... On this one Trump needs to take a hint from Obozo, stop doing daily press briefings... Hold them once a month ..."
"... the stooge press/talking heads have made a cottage industry off of the press conferences. the msm sends stooges to sell their product. trump is 100% correct- the msm doesn't have the guts to cull their stooge legions- oh dear- the white house will do their job for them. ..."
Nov 09, 2018 | www.zerohedge.com
Having barred his CNN arch nemesis Jim Acosta from the White House, on Friday the president lashed out at another CNN reporter at the White House over his appointment of Matthew Whitaker as acting AG as well as Whitaker's views towards the special counsel investigation.

During a Friday morning gaggle with White House reporters before Trump's trip to Paris, CNN's Abby Phillip asked the president if he was hoping Whitaker, who previously criticized Robert Mueller's special counsel investigation, would "rein in" the Russia probe. " Do you want [Whitaker] to rein in Robert Mueller?" Phillip asked.

Trump's response left the stunned reported speechless. "What a stupid question that is," Trump said and, just in case it was lost, repeated "what a stupid question."

"But I watch you a lot," Trump continued. "You ask a lot of stupid questions."

Trump then demonstrably walked away, leaving the shocked reporters screaming more questions in his wake.

Earlier, Trump said he has not spoken to acting AG Matt Whitaker about the Russia investigation, which Whitaker now oversees. Trump defended Whitaker as a "very well respected man in the law enforcement community" but claimed he does not know him personally. "I didn't speak to Matt Whitaker about it. I don't know Matt Whitaker," Trump told reporters at the White House before leaving for a trip to Paris.

While Trump sought to place personal distance between himself and Whitaker, he made it clear he stood by his decision to place a loyalist in charge of the Justice Department, a move many see as an effort to seize control of special counsel Robert Mueller's probe. The president also rejected suggestions that Whitaker is ineligible to serve as attorney general, a position held by some legal experts who say the Justice Department leader must be confirmed by the Senate.

The acting AG has raised eyebrows, and in some cases prediction of a constitutional crisis, because before joining the DOJ, Whitaker was an outspoken critic of Mueller's investigation and many Democrats and legal scholars have said he should recuse himself from leading the probe. Whitaker also claimed there was no collusion between the Trump campaign and Russian interference efforts in the 2016 election, which is the central question of the Mueller probe.

Trump lamented the criticism of Whitaker's past commentary, saying "it's a shame that no matter who I put in, they go after him."

Trump then reiterated his plans to have Whitaker serve in an acting capacity, but declined to reveal who might be Sessions' permanent replacement. He said he likes Chris Christie, who is under consideration , but said he has not spoken to the former NJ governor about the post. Christie was at the White House on Thursday for an event on prison reform but Trump said he did not speak to him.

* * *

Trump wasn't finished, however, and during the same gaggle, he suggested he could pull press credentials from other reporters who don't show him "respect" two days after the president suspended the press pass of CNN chief White House correspondent Jim Acosta after a contentious exchange during a news conference.

"I think Jim Acosta is a very unprofessional man," Trump explained and when asked how long Acosta's credentials will be suspended, the president replied: "As far as I'm concerned, I haven't made that decision. But it could be others also."

Trump also went after April Ryan of American Urban Radio Networks as a "loser" who "doesn't know what the hell she is doing."

Keyser 15 minutes ago

On this one Trump needs to take a hint from Obozo, stop doing daily press briefings... Hold them once a month, then hand-pick which reporters you want in the room... And if a reporter publishes a story you don't like, prosecute them... What we have now is what happens when the lunatics are given free reign...

dcmbuffy 55 minutes ago remove

the stooge press/talking heads have made a cottage industry off of the press conferences. the msm sends stooges to sell their product. trump is 100% correct- the msm doesn't have the guts to cull their stooge legions- oh dear- the white house will do their job for them.

[Nov 06, 2018] US-British Threats Against Russia Have a Long History by T.J. Coles – Matthew Alford

Notable quotes:
"... Union Jackboot: What Your Media and Professors Don't Tell You About British Foreign Policy ..."
"... There seems to be a consensus that we need a strong military because Russia is on the rise. What do you think about that rationale? ..."
"... What about military threats? ..."
"... So we've extended NATO to pretty much the Russian border? But there's a hard border there. Everyone knows we're never going to attack Russia, both for reasons of morality and self-preservation. So maybe this situation is safer than you imply. ..."
"... Brexit White Paper ..."
"... T. J. Coles is a postdoctoral researcher at Plymouth University's Cognition Institute and the author of several books. ..."
"... Matthew Alford teaches at Bath University in the UK and has also written several books. Their latest is ..."
"... The Rise and Fall of the British Empire ..."
"... Bolshevism and Imperial Sedition ..."
"... Power without Responsibility ..."
"... Russian Roulette: A Deadly Game: How British Spies Thwarted Lenin's Global Plot ..."
"... Statement for the Record: Worldwide Threat Assessment of the US Intelligence Community ..."
"... Vision for 2020 ..."
"... Russian Nuclear Weapons: Past, Present, and Future ..."
"... The New Atlanticist ..."
"... The United Kingdom's relations with Russia ..."
Nov 06, 2018 | www.counterpunch.org

In their new book Union Jackboot: What Your Media and Professors Don't Tell You About British Foreign Policy (Até Books), doctors T.J. Coles and Matthew Alford debate the rationale of Anglo-American policy towards Russia.

Alford: There seems to be a consensus that we need a strong military because Russia is on the rise. What do you think about that rationale?

Coles: There's no consensus, except among European and American elites. Europe and America are not the world.

There are a lot of issues to consider with regards to Russia. Is it a threat? If so to whom? What kind of threat is Russia? So let's consider these questions carefully. As far as the British establishment is concerned, Russia is an ideological threat because it is a major power with a substantial population. It's also self-reliant where oil and gas is concerned, unlike Britain. So there's lots of potential for Russian political ideology to undermine Britain's status. In fact, there are European Council on Foreign Relations papers saying that Putin's Russia presents an "ideological alternative" to the EU. [i] And that's dangerous.

Britain, or more accurately its policymaking elites, have considered Russia a significant enemy for over a century. Under the Tsar, the so-called Great Game was a battle for strategic resources, trading routes, and so on. The historian Lawrence James calls this period the first Cold War, which went "hot" with the Crimean War (1853-56). [ii] Britain had a mixed relationship with the Tsars because, on the one hand, theirs' were repressive regimes and Britain tended to favour repressive regimes, hence their brief alliance with Russia's enemy, the Ottomans. On the other hand, Russia was a strategic threat to Britain's imperial interests, and thus the Crimean War (1853-56).

When the Bolsheviks took over Russia, beginning 1917, the relationship became much less ambiguous – Russians, and especially Bolsheviks, were clearly the enemy. Their ideology posed a threat internally. So Winston Churchill, who began as a Liberal and became a Conservative, considered the Labour Party, which was formed in 1900, as basically a front for Bolsheviks. [iii] That shows the level of paranoia among elites. The Labour Party, at least at the beginning, was a genuine, working man's political organisation – women couldn't vote then, remember. So by associating this progressive, grassroots party representing the working classes as an ideological ally or even puppet of the brutal Bolshevik regime, the Tories had an excuse to undermine the power of organised, working people. So you had the Zinoviev letter in 1924, which we now know was a literal conspiracy between the secret services and elements of the Tory party to fabricate a link between Labour and Moscow. And it famously cost Labour the general election, since the right-wing, privately-owned media ran with the story as though it was real. It's an early example of fake news. [iv]

That's the ideological threat that Russia has posed, historically. But where there's a threat, there's an opportunity. The British elites exploited the "threat" then and as they do today by associating organised labour with evil Bolshevism and, in doing so, alienate the lower classes from their own political interests. Suddenly, we've all got to be scared of Russia, just like in 1917. And let's not forget that Britain used chemical weapons – M-Devices, which induced vomiting – against the Bolsheviks. Chemical weapons were "the right medicine for the Bolshevist," in Churchill's words. This was in 1919, as part of the Allied invasion of Russia in support of the White Army. [v]

So if we're talking about the historical balance of forces and cause and effect, Britain not Russia initiated the use of chemical weapons against others. But this history is typically inverted to say that Russia poses a threat to the West, hence all the talk about Novichok, the Skripals, and Dawn Sturgess, the civilian who supposedly came into contact with Novichok and died in hospital a few days later.

The next question: What sort of threat is Russia? According to the US Army War College, since the collapse of the Soviet Union and since pro-US, pro-"free market" President Boris Yeltsin resigned in 1999, Russia has pursued so-called economic nationalism. And the US doesn't like this because markets suddenly get closed and taxes are raised against US corporations. [vi] That's the real threat. But you can't tell the public that: that we hate Russia because they aren't doing what we say. If you look through the military documents, you can find almost nothing about security threats against the US in terms of Russian expansion, except in the sense that "security" means operational freedom. You can find references to Russia's nuclear weapons, though, which are described as defensive, designed "to counter US forces and weapons systems." [vii] Try finding that on the BBC. I should mention that even "defensive" nukes can be launched accidentally.

The real goal with regards to Russia is maintaining US economic hegemony and the culture of open "free markets" that goes with it, while at the same time being protectionist in real life. (US protectionism didn't start under Trump, by the way.) Liberal media like the New York Times run sarcastic articles about Russian state oil and gas being a front for Putin and his cronies. And yes, that may be true. But what threat is Russia to the US if it has a corrupt government? The threat is closing its markets to the US. The US is committed to what its military calls Full Spectrum Dominance. So the world needs to be run in a US-led neoliberal order, in the words of the US military, "to protect US interests and investment." [viii] But this cannot be done if you have "economic nationalism," like China had until the "reforms" of the '70s and '80s, and still has today to some extent. Russia and China aren't military threats. The global population on the whole knows this, even though the domestic US and British media say the opposite.

Alford: What about military threats?

Coles: The best sources you can get are the US military records. Straight from the horse's mouth. The military plans for war and defence. They have contingencies for when political situations change. So they know what they're talking about. There's a massive divide between reality, as understood from the military records, and media and political rhetoric. Assessments by the US Army War College, for instance, said years ago that any moves by NATO to support a Western-backed government in Ukraine would provoke Russia into annexing Crimea. They don't talk about Russia spontaneously invading Ukraine and annexing it, which is the image we get from the media. The documents talk about Russia reacting to NATO provocation. [ix]

If you look at a map, you see Russia surrounded by hostile NATO forces. The media don't discuss this dangerous and provocative situation, except the occasional mention of, say, US-British-Polish war-gaming on the border with Russia. When they do mention it, they say it's for "containment," the containment of Russia. But to contain something, the given thing has to be expanding. But the US military – like the annual threat assessments to Congress – say that Russia's not expanding, except when provoked. So at the moment as part of its NATO mission, the UK is training Polish and Ukrainian armed forces, has deployed troops in Poland and Estonia, and is conducting military exercises with them. [x]

Imagine if Scotland ceded from the UK and the Russians were on our border conducting military exercises, supposedly to deter a British invasion of Scotland. That's what we're doing in Ukraine. Britain's moves are extremely dangerous. In the 1980s, the UK as part of NATO conducted the exercise, Operation Able Archer, which envisaged troop build-ups between NATO and the Warsaw Pact countries. Now-declassified records show that the Russians briefly mistook this exercise for a real-world scenario. That could have escalated into nuclear war. This is very serious. [xi]

But the biggest player is the USA. It's using the threat of force and a global architecture of hi-tech militarism to shape a neoliberal order. Britain is slavishly following its lead. I doubt that Britain would position forces near Russia were it not for the USA. Successive US administrations have or are building a missile system in Europe and Turkey. They say it's to deter Iran from firing Scud missiles at Europe. But it's pointed at Russia. It's a radar system based in Romania and Turkey, with a battery of Patriot missiles based in Poland. The stationing of missiles there provoked Russia into moving its mobile nuclear weapons up to the border in its Kaliningrad exclave, as it warned it would do in 2008. [xii] Try to find any coverage of that in the media, except for a few articles in the print media here or there. If Western media were interested in survival, there would be regular headlines: "NATO provoking Russia."

But the situation in Ukraine is really the tipping point. Consider the equivalent. Imagine if Russia was conducting military exercises with Canada or Mexico, and building bases there. How would the US react? It would be considered an extreme threat, a violation of the UN Charter, which prohibits threats against sovereign states.

Alford: So we've extended NATO to pretty much the Russian border? But there's a hard border there. Everyone knows we're never going to attack Russia, both for reasons of morality and self-preservation. So maybe this situation is safer than you imply.

Coles: There's no morality involved. States are abstract, amorphous entities comprised of dominant minorities and subjugated majorities who are conditioned to believe that they are relatively free and prosperous. The elites of those states act both in their self-interests – career, peer-pressure, kickbacks, and so on – and in the interests of their class, which is of course tied to international relations because their class thrives on profiting from resource exploitation. So you can't talk about morality in this context. Only individuals can behave morally. The state is made up of individuals, of course, but they're acting against the interests of the majority. As we speak, they are acting immorally – or at least amorally – but creating the geopolitical conditions that imperil each and every one of us.

As for invasion, we're not going to invade Russia. This isn't 1918. Russia has nuclear weapons and can deter an invasion. But that's not the point. Do we want to de-escalate an already tense geopolitical situation or make it worse to the point where an accident happens? So while it's not about invading Russia directly, the issue is about attacking what are called Russia's "national interests." Russia's "national interests" are the same as the elites' of the UK. National interest doesn't mean the interests of the public. It means the interests of the policymaking establishment and the corporations. For example, the Theresa May government sacrificed its own credibility to ensure that its Brexit White Paper (2018) appeased both the interests of the food and manufacturing industries that want a soft Brexit – easy trade with the EU – and the financial services sector which wants a hard Brexit – freedom from EU regulation. Everyone else be damned. That's the "national interest."

So for its real "national interest," Russia wants to keep Ukraine in its sphere of influence because its oil and gas to Europe pass through Ukraine. About 80% of Russia's export economy is in the oil and gas sector. It's already had serious political tensions with Ukraine, which on several occasions hasn't paid its energy bills, so Russia has cut supplies. If Europe can bump Ukraine into its own sphere of influence it has more leverage over Russia. This is practically admitted in Parliamentary discussions by Foreign Office ministers, and so forth. [xiii] Again, omitted by the media. Also, remember that plenty of ethnic Russians live in eastern Ukraine. In addition, Russia has a naval base in Crimea. That's not to excuse its illegal action in annexing Ukraine, it's to highlight the realpolitik missing in the media's coverage of the situation.

T. J. Coles is a postdoctoral researcher at Plymouth University's Cognition Institute and the author of several books.

Matthew Alford teaches at Bath University in the UK and has also written several books. Their latest is Union Jackboot (Até Books).

SOURCES

[i] Mark Leonard and Nicu Popescu (2007) 'A Power Audit of EU-Russia Relations' European Council on Foreign Relations, Policy Paper, p. 1 http://www.ecfr.eu/page/-/ECFR-02_A_POWER_AUDIT_OF_EU-RUSSIA_RELATIONS.pdf .

[ii] 'Anglo-Russian relations were severely strained; what was in effect a cold war lasted from the late 1820s to the beginning of the next century'. The Crimean War seems to have set a precedent for today. James writes:

[It] was an imperial war, the only one fought by Britain against a European power during the nineteenth century, although some would have regarded Russia as essentially an Asiatic power. No territory was at stake; the war was undertaken solely to guarantee British naval supremacy in the Mediterranean and, indirectly, to forestall any threat to India which might have followed Russia replacing Britain as the dominant power in the Middle East.

Lawrence James (1997) The Rise and Fall of the British Empire London: Abacus, pp. 180-82.

[iii] Churchill said in 1920:

All these strikes and rumours of strikes and threats of strikes and loss and suffering caused by them; all this talk of revolution and "direct action" have deeply offended most of the British people. There is a growing feeling that a considerable section of organized Labour is trying to tyrannize over the whole public and to bully them into submission, not by argument, not by recognized political measures, but by brute force

But if we can do little for Russia [under the Bolsheviks], we can do much for Britain. We do not want any of these experiments here

Whether it is the Irish murder gang or the Egyptian vengeance society, or the seditious extremists in India, or the arch-traitors we have at home, they will feel the weight of the British arm.

Winston Churchill (1920) Bolshevism and Imperial Sedition . Speech to United Wards Club. London: The International Churchill Society https://winstonchurchill.org/resources/speeches/1915-1929-nadir-and-recovery/bolshevism-and-imperial-sedition/ .

[iv] The fake letter says:

A settlement of relations between the two countries [UK and Russia] will assist in the revolutionising of the international and British proletariat, [and] make it possible for us to extend and develop the propaganda and ideas of Leninism in England and the colonies.

It also says that 'British workmen' have 'inclinations to compromise' and that rapprochement will eventually lead to domestic '[a]rmed warfare'. It was leaked by the services to the Conservative party and then to the media. Richard Norton-Taylor (1999) 'Zinoviev letter was dirty trick by MI6' Guardian https://www.theguardian.com/politics/1999/feb/04/uk.politicalnews6 and Louise Jury (1999) 'Official Zinoviev letter was forged' Independent http://www.independent.co.uk/news/official-zinoviev-letter-was-forged-1068600.html . For media coverage at the time, see James Curran and Jean Seaton (1997) Power without Responsibility London: Routledge, p. 52.

[v] Paul F. Walker (2017) 'A Century of Chemical Warfare: Building a World Free of Chemical Weapons' Conference: One Hundred Years of Chemical Warfare: Research, Deployment, Consequences pp. 379-400 and Giles Milton (2013) Russian Roulette: A Deadly Game: How British Spies Thwarted Lenin's Global Plot London: Hodder, eBook.

[vi] 'The Russian Federation has shown repeatedly that common values play almost no role in its consideration of its trading partners', meaning the US and EU. 'It often builds relationships with countries that most openly thwart Western values of free markets and democracy', notably Iran and Venezuela. 'In this regard, the Russian Federation behaves like "Russia Incorporated." It uses its re-nationalized industries to further its wealth and influence, the latter often at the expense of the EU and the U.S.'. Colonel Richard J. Anderson (2008) 'A History of President Putin's Campaign to Re-Nationalize Industry and the Implications for Russian Reform and Foreign Policy' Senior Service College, US Army War College, Pennsylvania: Carlisle Barracks, p. 52.

[vii] Daniel R. Coats (2017) Statement for the Record: Worldwide Threat Assessment of the US Intelligence Community Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, Washington, DC: Office of the Director of

National Intelligence, pp. 18-19 https://www.dni.gov/files/documents/Newsroom/Testimonies/SSCI%20Unclassified%20SFR%20-%20Final.pdf .

[viii] US Space Command (1997) Vision for 2020 Colorado: Peterson Air Force Base https://ia802705.us.archive.org/10/items/pdfy-j6U3MFw1cGmC-yob/U.S.%20Space%20Command%20Vision%20For%202020.pdf .

[ix] The document also says: 'a replay of the West-sponsored coup against pro-Russian elites could result in a split, or indeed multiple splits, of the failed Ukraine, which would open a door for NATO intervention'.Pavel K. Baev (2011) 'Russia's security relations with the United States: Futures planned and unplanned' in Stephen J. Blank (ed.) Russian Nuclear Weapons: Past, Present, and Future Strategic Studies Institute Pennsylvania: Carlisle Barracks, p. 170, www.strategicstudiesinstitute.army.mil/pdffiles/PUB1087.pdf.

[x] Forces Network (2016) 'British troops to deploy to Poland' https://www.forces.net/news/tri-service/british-troops-deploy-poland .

[xi] For example, Nate Jones, Thomas Blanton and Christian F. Ostermann (2016) 'Able Archer 83: The Secret History' Nuclear Proliferation International History Project Washington, DC: Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars https://www.wilsoncenter.org/event/able-archer-83-the-secret-history .

[xii] It was reported in the ultra-right, neo-con press at the time that:

[Russian] President Dmitri Medvedev announced in his first state-of-the-nation address plans to deploy the short-range SS-26 ("Iskander") missiles in the Russian exclave of Kaliningrad if the U.S. goes ahead with its European Ballistic Missile Defense System (BMDS). Medvedev told parliament that the deployment would "neutralize" U.S. plans for a missile defense shield based in Poland and the Czech Republic [now in Romania), which the U.S. claims as vital in defending against missile attacks from 'rogue states' such as Iran.

Neil Leslie (2008) 'The Kaliningrad Missile Crisis' The New Atlanticist , available at http://www.atlanticcouncil.org/blogs/new-atlanticist/the-kaliningrad-missile-crisis.

[xiii] For example, a Parliamentary inquiry into British-Russian relations says of the newly-imposed US-British ally in Ukraine:

President Poroshenko's Government is more openly committed to economic reform and anti-corruption than any previous Ukrainian Administration. The reform agenda has made considerable progress and has enjoyed some successes including police reform, liberalisation of the energy market and the launch of an online platform for government procurement

The annexation of Crimea also resulted in a ban on importing products from Crimea, on investing in or providing services linked to tourism and on exporting certain goods for use in the transport, telecoms and energy sectors.

House of Commons Foreign Affairs Committee (2017) The United Kingdom's relations with Russia Seventh report of session 2016-17, HC 120 London: Stationary Office, pp. 28, 31 https://publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm201617/cmselect/cmfaff/120/120.pdf

[Nov 06, 2018] The latest garbage issued by the yanks

Nov 06, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

Peter AU 1 , Nov 6, 2018 5:39:03 PM | link

The latest garbage issued by the yanks.

https://www.state.gov/r/pa/prs/ps/2018/08/285043.htm
"Following the use of a "Novichok" nerve agent in an attempt to assassinate UK citizen Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia Skripal, the United States, on August 6, 2018, determined under the Chemical and Biological Weapons Control and Warfare Elimination Act of 1991 (CBW Act) that the Government of the Russian Federation has used chemical or biological weapons in violation of international law or has used lethal chemical or biological weapons against its own nationals.

Following a 15-day Congressional notification period, these sanctions will take effect upon publication of a notice in the Federal Register, expected on or around August 22, 2018"
.....

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-russia-sanctions/u-s-says-to-issue-chemical-weapons-related-sanctions-against-russia-idUSKCN1NB2M7?il=0
"The department in August had threatened Russia with added sanctions after 90 days unless it complied with the 1991 Chemical and Biological Weapons and Warfare Elimination Act.

Under the law, Russia had to end the use of the nerve agent Novichok, which was used in the poisoning of Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia in March, commit to not using chemical weapons against its own people, and allow on-site inspections by agencies like the United Nations.

"Today, the department informed Congress we could not certify that the Russian Federation met the conditions," U.S. State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert said in a statement."

[Nov 05, 2018] "They Will Not Forgive Us" by James Carroll

Nov 05, 2018 | www.unz.com

It was only an announcement, but think of it as the beginning of a journey into hell. Last week, President Donald Trump made public his decision to abrogate the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty (INF), a 1987 agreement with the Soviet Union. National Security Advisor John Bolton , a Cold Warrior in a post-Cold War world, promptly flaunted that announcement on a trip to Vladimir Putin's Moscow. To grasp the import of that decision, however, quite another kind of voyage is necessary, a trip down memory lane.

That 1987 pact between Moscow and Washington was no small thing in a world that, during the Cuban Missile Crisis only 25 years earlier, had reached the edge of nuclear Armageddon. The INF Treaty led to the elimination of thousands of nuclear weapons, but its significance went far beyond that. As a start, it closed the books on the nightmare of a Europe caught between the world-ending strategies of the two superpowers, since most of those "intermediate-range" missiles were targeting that very continent. No wonder, last week, a European Union spokesperson, responding to Trump, fervently defended the treaty as a permanent "pillar" of international order.

To take that trip back three decades in time and remember how the INF came about should be an instant reminder of just how President Trump is playing havoc with something essential to human survival.

In October 1986 in Reykjavik, Iceland, the leaders of the United States and the Soviet Union, Ronald Reagan and Mikhail Gorbachev , briefly came close to fully freeing the planet from the horrifying prospect of nuclear annihilation. In his second inaugural address, a year and a half earlier, President Reagan had wishfully called for "the total elimination" of nuclear weapons. At that Reykjavik summit, Gorbachev, a pathbreaking Soviet leader, promptly took the president up on that dream, proposing -- to the dismay of the aides of both leaders -- a total nuclear disarmament pact that would take effect in the year 2000.

Reagan promptly agreed in principle. "Suits me fine," he said. "That's always been my goal." But it didn't happen. Reagan had another dream, too -- of a space-based missile defense system against just such weaponry, the Strategic Defense Initiative (SDI), also dubbed "Star Wars." He refused to yield on the subject when Gorbachev rejected SDI as the superpower arms race transferred into space. "This meeting is over," Reagan then said.

Of the failure of Reykjavik, Soviet Foreign Minister Eduard Shevardnadze would then comment : "When future generations read the transcripts of this meeting, they will not forgive us." At that point, the nuclear arsenals of the U.S. and the USSR had hit a combined 60,000 weapons and were still growing. (Five new American nuclear weapons were being added each day.) A month after Reykjavik, in fact, the U.S. deployed a new B-52-based cruise missile system in violation of the 1979 SALT II Treaty. Hawks in Moscow were pressing for similar escalations. Elites on both sides -- weapons manufacturers, intelligence and political establishments, think tanks, military bureaucracies, and pundits -- were appalled at what the two leaders had almost agreed to. The national security priesthood, East and West, wanted to maintain what was termed "the stability of the strategic stalemate," even if such stability, based on ever-expanding arsenals, could not have been less stable.

But a widespread popular longing for relief from four decades of nuclear dread had been growing on both sides of the Iron Curtain. In a surge of anti-nuclear activism , millions of ordinary citizens took to the streets of cities in the U.S. and Europe to protest the superpower nuclear establishments. Even behind the Iron Curtain, voices for peace could be heard. "Listen," Gorbachev pleaded after Reykjavik, "to the demands of the American people, the Soviet people, the peoples of all countries."

A Watershed Treaty

As it happened, the Soviet leader refused to settle for Reagan's no. Four months after the Iceland summit, he proposed an agreement "without delay" to remove from Europe all intermediate missiles -- those with a range well under that of intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBMs). When Pentagon officials tried to swat Gorbachev's proposal aside by claiming that there could be no such agreement without on-site inspections, he said fine, inspect away! That was an unprecedented concession from the Soviet Union.

President Reagan was surrounded by men like then-Assistant Secretary of State Paul Wolfowitz (later to become infamous for his role in promoting a post-9/11 invasion of Iraq), who assumed Gorbachev was a typical Soviet "master of deceit." But for all his hawkishness, the president had other instincts as well. Events would show that, on the subject of nukes (SDI notwithstanding), Reagan had indeed recognized the threat to the human future posed by the open-ended accumulation of ever more of those weapons and had become a kind of nuclear abolitionist. Even if ending that threat was inconceivable to him, his desire to mitigate it would prove genuine.

At the time, however, Reagan had other problems to deal with. Just as Gorbachev put forward his surprising initiative, the American president found himself engulfed in the Iran-Contra scandal -- a criminal conspiracy to trade arms for hostages with Iran, while illegally aiding right-wing paramilitaries in Central America. It threatened to become his Watergate. It would, in the end, lead to the indictments of 14 members of his administration. Beleaguered, he desperately wanted to change the subject. A statesman-like rescue of faltering arms-control negotiations might prove just the helping hand he was looking for. So the day before he went on television to abjectly offer repentance for Iran-Contra, he announced that he would accept Gorbachev's INF proposal. His hawkish inner circle was thoroughly disgusted by the gesture. Secretary of Defense Casper Weinberger promptly resigned in protest. (He would later be indicted for Iran-Contra.)

On December 8, 1987, Reagan and Gorbachev would indeed meet in Washington and sign the INF Treaty, eliminating more than 2,000 ground-based warheads and giving Europe the reprieve its people had wanted. This would be the first actual reduction in nuclear weapons to occur since two atomic bombs were built at Los Alamos in 1945. The INF Treaty proved historic for turning back the tide of escalation. It showed that the arms race could be not just frozen but reversed, that negotiations could lead the two superpowers out of what seemed like the ultimate impasse -- a model that should be urgently applicable today.

In reality, the mutually reinforcing hair-trigger nuclear posture of the United States and the Soviet Union was not much altered by the treaty, since only land-based, not air- and submarine-launched missiles, were affected by it and longer range ICBMs were off the table. (Still, Europe could breathe a bit easier, even if, in operational terms, nuclear danger had not been much reduced.) Yet that treaty would prove a turning point, opening the way to a better future. It would be essential to the political transformation that quickly followed, the wholly unpredicted and surprisingly non-violent end to the Cold War that arrived not quite two years later. The treaty showed that the arms race itself could be ended -- and eventually, it nearly would be. That is the lesson that somehow needs to be preserved in the Trump era.

A Man for All Apocalypses

In reality, the Trump administration's abandonment of the INF Treaty has little to do with the actual deployment of intermediate-range missiles, whether those that the Pentagon may now seek to emplace in Europe or those apparently already being put in place in Russia. In truth, such nuclear firepower will not add much to what submarine- and air-launched cruise missiles can already do. As for Vladimir Putin's bellicosity, removing the restraints on arms control will only magnify the Russian leader's threatening behavior. However, it should be clear by now that Donald Trump's urge to trash the treaty comes from his own bellicosity , not from Russian (or, for that matter, Chinese) aggressiveness. Trump seems to deplore the pact precisely because of what it meant to Ronald Reagan and Mikhail Gorbachev, as well as to the millions who cheered them on long ago: its repudiation of an apocalyptic future. (As his position on climate change indicates, the president is visibly a man for all apocalypses.)

Trump has launched a second nuclear age by rejecting the treaty that was meant to initiate the closing of the first one. The arms race was then slowed, but, alas, the competitors stumbled on through the end of the Cold War. Shutting that arms-contest down completely remained an unfinished task, in part because the dynamic of weapons reduction proved so reversible even before Donald Trump made it into the Oval Office. George W. Bush, for instance, struck a blow against arms control with his 2002 abrogation of the Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty, which rekindled Reagan's Star Wars fantasy. The way Washington subsequently promoted missile defense systems in Europe, especially in Poland, where a nearly $5 billion missile contract was agreed to this year, empowered the most hawkish wing of the Kremlin, guaranteeing just the sort of Russian build-up that has indeed occurred. If present Russian intermediate-range missile deployments are in violation of the INF Treaty, they did not happen in a vacuum.

Barack Obama, of course, won the Nobel Peace Prize in the early moments of his presidency for his vision of a nuclear-weapons-free world, yet not even he could curb the malevolent influence of nuclear planning in the Pentagon and elsewhere in Washington. To get approval of the 2010 New START Treaty, which was to further reduce the total number of strategic warheads and launchers on both sides, from the Republican Senate, the Peace Laureate president had to agree to an $80 billion renewal of America's existing nuclear arsenal just when it was ripe for a fuller dismantling. That devil's bargain with Washington's diehard nuclear hawks further empowered Russia's similarly hawkish militarists.

All of this reflects a pattern established relatively early in the Cold War years. U.S. arms escalations in that era -- from the long-range bomber and the hydrogen bomb to the nuclear-armed submarine and the cruise missile to the "high frontier" of space -- inevitably prompted the Kremlin to follow in lockstep (and these days, you would need to add the Chinese into the equation as well). Americans should recall that, since August 6, 1945, the ratcheting up of nuclear weapons competition has always begun in Washington. And so it has again.

By the time the Obama administration left office, the Defense Department was already planning to "modernize" the U.S. nuclear arsenal in a massively expensive way. Last February, with the release of the Pentagon's 2018 Nuclear Posture Review, the Trump administration committed to that arsenal's full bore reinvention, big time, to the tune of at least $1.2 trillion and possibly $1.6 trillion over the next three decades. ICBM silos only recently slated for closing will be rebuilt. There will be new generations of nuclear-armed bombers and submarines, as well as nuclear cruise missiles. There will be wholly new nuclear weapons expressly designed to be "usable." And in that context, American nuclear strategy is also being recast. For the first time, the United States is now explicitly threatening to launch those "usable" weapons in response to non-nuclear assaults.

The surviving lynchpin of arms control is that New START Treaty that mattered so to Obama in 2010. It capped deployed strategic nuclear warheads at 1,550 and implied that there would be further reductions to come. It must, however, be renewed in 2021. Trump is already on record calling it a bad deal, but he may not have to wait until possible reelection in 2020 to do it in. His INF Treaty abrogation might do the trick first. Limits on long-range strategic missiles may not survive the pressures that are sure to follow an arms race involving the intermediate variety.

No less worrisome, the Trump administration's fervent support for the Pentagon's modernization, and so reinvention, of the American nuclear arsenal amounts to a blatant violation of the 1968 Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, which required nuclear powers to work toward "the cessation of the nuclear arms race at an early date." The president's explicit desire to maintain an ever more lethal nuclear arsenal into the indefinite future violates that requirement and will certainly undermine that treaty, too.

It's no exaggeration to say that those arms control treaties, taken together, probably saved the world from a nuclear Armageddon

[Nov 05, 2018] James Carroll Entering the Second Nuclear Age by Tom Engelhardt

Notable quotes:
"... TomDispatch ..."
"... The Fate of the Earth ..."
"... In that remarkable volume, Schell offered a stunning vision of what a ten-thousand-megaton nuclear strike on the U.S. might mean. ("In the ten seconds or so after each bomb hit, as blast waves swept outward from thousands of ground zeros, the physical plant of the United States would be swept away like leaves in a gust of wind.") In the end, after radiation had also taken its toll, he wrote, the United States -- in a phrase that's haunted me ever since -- "would be a republic of insects and grass." ..."
Nov 04, 2018 | www.unz.com

He was the candidate who, while talking to a foreign policy expert, reportedly wondered "why we can't use nuclear weapons." He was the man who would never rule anything out or take any "cards," including nuclear ones, off the proverbial table. He was the fellow who, as president-elect, was eager to expand the American nuclear arsenal and told Morning Joe host Mika Brzezinski, "Let it be an arms race. We will outmatch them at every pass and outlast them all." I'm referring, of course, to the president who, early on, spoke with his top national security officials of returning the country to a Cold War footing when it came to such weaponry and called for the equivalent of a tenfold expansion of the U.S. nuclear arsenal. I'm thinking of the president who once threatened North Korea with "fire and fury like the world has never seen" and proudly claimed that he had a "bigger nuclear button" than that country's leader, Kim Jong-un.

Given his fascination with nuclear weaponry, it's hardly surprising that the very same president would decide to pull the U.S. out of the Cold War-era 1987 Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty (INF) or that his vice president would refuse to rule out -- another potentially treaty-busting act -- the deployment of nuclear weapons in space. It's a gesture that, as TomDispatch regular and former Boston Globe columnist James Carroll explains today, could not be more devastating when it comes to creating a new nuclear arms race on this increasingly godforsaken planet of ours. Reading Carroll's piece, I thought of a mobilizing nuclear moment in my own life. It was the time in 1982 when I read Jonathan Schell's bestselling book The Fate of the Earth , which helped create a global anti-nuclear movement, millions of active citizens desiring a nuke-free world, that prepared the way for the INF Treaty.

In that remarkable volume, Schell offered a stunning vision of what a ten-thousand-megaton nuclear strike on the U.S. might mean. ("In the ten seconds or so after each bomb hit, as blast waves swept outward from thousands of ground zeros, the physical plant of the United States would be swept away like leaves in a gust of wind.") In the end, after radiation had also taken its toll, he wrote, the United States -- in a phrase that's haunted me ever since -- "would be a republic of insects and grass."

That, in other words, is what it might mean, in the twenty-first century, as in the previous one, for a president to put all those nuclear "cards" back on the table and "outmatch and outlast them all."

[Nov 05, 2018] Russian "Doomsday Machine" an Answer to U.S. Decapitation Strategy - Daniel Ellsberg on RAI (5-8)

Notable quotes:
"... Ellsberg writes: "What has not changed is American preoccupation with threatening Russian command and control The National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2017, passed with bipartisan support and signed by President Obama on December 23, 2016, included a provision which mandated a report by the Office of the Director of National Intelligence and the Strategic command on 'Russian and Chinese Political and Military Leadership Survivability, Command and Control, and Continuity of Governmental Programs and Activities.' ..."
"... including a detailed description of how the command, control, and communications systems' for the leadership of Russia and China, respectively, are factored into the nuclear war plan. ..."
"... As General Holloway expressed it in 1980, he had confidence that with such a decapitating strategy, a U.S. first strike would come out much better for the United States than a second strike, to the point of surviving and even prevailing. ..."
Nov 05, 2018 | therealnews.com

DANIEL ELLSBERG: Actually, I'll tell you- this is quite relevant, actually, in a way. The first point you were asking me about, the question who else could push the button.

PAUL JAY: And how did you find this out, that it wasn't just the president?

DANIEL ELLSBERG: The answer was that I was told in the Pacific. I was part of a task force, a research group, looking into command and control of nuclear forces in the Pacific under the Commander in Chief Pacific, CINCPAC, Admiral Harry D. Felt. And his particular interest was to assure that an execute order, a launch order, would get out despite, perhaps, atmospheric problems, and despite perhaps enemy efforts to disrupt that. But I also looked into especially the problem of could the order go out without the president having determined that? Or perhaps even without Admiral Felt having determined? And what I found was absolutely.

On the latter point, by the way, I discovered that the supposed "two-man rule," which we hear about to this day, that nothing can be done with respect to the launch of nuclear weapons that doesn't have confirmation by at least two people, as in launch control centers or anywhere else. And what I found was that the rule, that the procedures to enforce that, such as having two separate safes with two parts of an execute code, one part in each safe so that only one officer at a time could know half the code, was invariably violated. They all had both halves of the code in case one of them was sick, or visiting the PX at that moment, or health, or whatever reason. They ensured that they could get that order out without having to wait for two people. There were other forms that that took, but the supposed two-man rule was basically a myth. On the other hand, the one-man rule, the notion that only the president can do it, turned out also to be a myth. What I learned was that- I was told that Admiral Felt had received a letter from President Eisenhower authorizing him, if communications were out with Washington, or if the president were incapacitated- like in the small case, in the command post, if the boss or somebody else is sick- the theater commander, Commander in Chief Pacific, could launch the weapons on his own if he felt it necessary in a crisis. He was about to be attacked, or the war was starting, or whatever.

Now, in those days, before communications satellites existed, I think, or certainly were common, communications were out part of every day between Washington and Hawaii, where Felt was. And that meant that for some significant part of every day, the Commander in Chief Pacific was on his own, in- perhaps in terms of a crisis, such as the Offshore Islands, the Quemoy-Matsu crisis of 1958, which was just a year before I was investigating this for CINCPAC. Then I learned that the Commander in Chief Pacific had, in turn, delegated for the same reason to lower commanders, like 7th Fleet in WESTPAC, Western Pacific. For the same reason, as I say. Again, communications were lost between Hawaii and Western Pacific or Korea part of every day, on this. And so you had to assure, as they saw it, that the of the order would get out despite an atmospheric disturbance, or cutting of a cable, as had happened at various times.

So there were many fingers on the button, essentially, that could do this, and no locks at that time. That came much later. The image the public has had, I think, up to this point is that the president's so-called football, the briefcase that contains, allegedly, codes and options, they think of those codes as like the lock on a combination lock without which the weapon can't be fired. That's not true. The codes we talk of, the president codes in that briefcase, are authentication codes assuring that the person receiving it knows this is the president, or the boss, and whoever, and enables him to give the order; to be one of those who can give the order. It's in no way necessary for that order to have that code for the order to go out at a lower level. And that's always been true.

Now there's a reason- that turned out to be true, what I was told. And I in fact, I informed McGeorge Bundy, President Kennedy's National Security Assistant, of that situation in late January, 1961. He didn't know of it, and he alerted the president to this. I investigated it for him, to pin that down. Kennedy renewed the order rather than, as I was told, reverse the order of the great General by Lieutenant Kennedy, which is his rank in World War II.

PAUL JAY: But when Kennedy becomes president he's not briefed that this is the case?

DANIEL ELLSBERG: Well, he was briefed by McGeorge Bundy after I briefed McGeorge Bundy. But Bundy had not known this, no, and might not have for some period had I not brought it to their attention. It was very closely held inside the Defense Department. Many people did not know it. But in the high chain of command, of course, they did know that this was possible. It was true not only for CINCPAC, but for the other commanders who had control of nuclear weapons, and they in turn had delegated.

So it was- the button has always been quite widely distributed, and it's almost surely true in most of the other nuclear weapons states, if not all of them. Otherwise a single warhead on the capital, or on the main command post, or in a few command posts, a few weapons, could paralyze retaliation. The idea of deterrence is said to depend on the possibility that you would respond. But the notion that you could paralyze the opponent's force by hitting his command or communications at the top would pretty much nullify deterrence. It's called decapitation. And our own plans depended on doing that to Moscow, and always have. So have the French, and the British, from the very first. They don't have even the pretense of disarming Russia. Their main focus has always been Moscow. The decapitation attack, and so forth.

Now, Moscow's response to that, ultimately, was the same as ours. They developed, as I tell in the book, discovered by Bruce Blair and others during the period of glasnost in the Soviet Union under Gorbachev, that they had arranged that if Moscow were destroyed, a rocket would go up, allowing and authenticating a launch order to go either directly from other distributed command posts in mountains, caves, elsewhere in the Soviet Union, or even directly to the missiles. There was a plan for that, though it wasn't instituted. But during a crisis, definitely, if we hit Moscow it would not paralyze them any more than it would have with us. That seems logical enough if you're depending on assuring an attack in the event of an attack. But of course, it allows for the possibility of accidental unauthorized war at any time.

PAUL JAY: In his book The Doomsday Machine, Daniel Ellsberg says the decapitation strategy still presents a great danger. He writes:

" Ten days after President Trump's inauguration in 2017, Pravda quoted his statements that 'the United States should strengthen and expand the nation's nuclear capacity,' and 'Let it be an arms race.' Pravda then reported that 'Not so long ago, the Russian Federation conducted exercises to repel a nuclear attack on Moscow and strike a retaliatory thermonuclear attack on the enemy. In the course of the operations, Russia tested the Perimeter System, known as the 'doomsday weapon' or the 'dead hand.' The system assesses the situation in the country and gives a command to strike a retaliatory blow on the enemy automatically. Thus, the enemy will not be able to attack Russia and stay alive.'"

Ellsberg writes: "What has not changed is American preoccupation with threatening Russian command and control The National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2017, passed with bipartisan support and signed by President Obama on December 23, 2016, included a provision which mandated a report by the Office of the Director of National Intelligence and the Strategic command on 'Russian and Chinese Political and Military Leadership Survivability, Command and Control, and Continuity of Governmental Programs and Activities.' This provision of the law called for the U.S. Strategic Command to 'submit to the appropriate congressional committees the views of the Commander on the report including a detailed description of how the command, control, and communications systems' for the leadership of Russia and China, respectively, are factored into the nuclear war plan.

Ellsberg writes: " The Pravda news stories quoted above, both appearing in the second week of the Trump administration, were explicitly responding to these provisions of this law signed a few weeks earlier in their explanation of the continuing need for Perimeter. Such plans and capabilities for decapitation encourage -- almost compel -- not only the Perimeter system, but Russian launch on (possibly false) warning: either by high command (in expectation of being hit themselves imminently, and in hopes of decapitating the enemy commanders before they have launched all their weapons) or by subordinates who are out of communication with high command and have been delegated launch authority.

" As General Holloway expressed it in 1980, he had confidence that with such a decapitating strategy, a U.S. first strike would come out much better for the United States than a second strike, to the point of surviving and even prevailing. He was right about the hopelessness of the alternative forms of preemption. But in reality, the hope of successfully avoiding mutual annihilation by a decapitating attack has always been as ill-founded as any other. The realistic conclusion would be that a nuclear exchange between the United States and the Soviets was -- and is -- virtually certain to be an unmitigated catastrophe, not only for the two parties but for the world. But being unwilling to change the whole framework of our foreign and defense policy by abandoning reliance on the threat of nuclear first use or escalation, policy makers (probably on both sides) have chosen to act as if they believed (and perhaps actually do believe) that such a threat is not what it is: a readiness to trigger global omnicide."

And for those of us who don't know the definition of 'omnicide,' it's the total extinction of the human species as a result of human action.

[Nov 05, 2018] Nuclear war threat is now real

Nov 05, 2018 | thenewkremlinstooge.wordpress.com

Northern Star November 5, 2018 at 2:25 pm

USA Psychopaths in Power WATCH:

"Phil Collins
The only thing that can stop this ever happening is if the American people stand up to these psychopaths running their country its called people power and would stop them in their tracks madmen now run the Whitehouse"

https://youtu.be/OpQuUMURex8

[Nov 05, 2018] Both in Skriplas affair and in Syria the UK is slowly sinking to its appropriate level of incompetence and self-delusion

Nov 05, 2018 | thenewkremlinstooge.wordpress.com

et Al November 5, 2018 at 8:22 am

I'm not surprised that you are such a fine shot with his harpoon considering your naval background, Mark! The UK is slowly sinking to its appropriate level of incompetence and self-delusion with the likes of former PM Dave Cameron declaring that he is 'shit bored' and would like to return to cabinet, preferably as Foreign Minister. That could be arranged, but as Foreign minister in Libya.

Still, the whole 'Russian corrupting in Britain' is the British government's perception management at its finest. As someone recently posted on the last thread, a Spanish case against RUSSIAN MAFIA collapsed for lack of evidence after ten years , which I suspect was partly provided by British Intelligence paid organized crime experts from Russia like Litvenenko & Skripal. Who's been bilked then?

Yes, this is a classic case of 'LOOK OVER THERE!' rather than the billions upon billions sunk in to London by the UK and the west's bestest Gulf buddies, you know, the one's who fear not their exposure for outrageous human rights abuses on a genocidal scale such as in Yemen, and a much smaller scale with the likes of their own citizens, sic Kashoggi. But, Chelsea & Westminster are such a fundamental part of British Life (coz its London, innit?) and does very well for itself. I have to admit, it is (mostly) nice around there where you can take a stroll along the Embankment, wander around Hyde Park and visit the museums.

Northern Star November 5, 2018 at 5:33 pm
"Like in the Wild West, betting in the saloon is also common when it comes to Syria. The US State Department under Obama placed all its bets on some entity they invented, which they liked to call "moderate rebels" (why not "respectable terrorists" or "polite criminals"?). They lost. Numerous left-wing academics signed on to regime change years ago, and because they only pretend to be seasoned analysts for their day jobs, they did not foresee the collapse of the anti-government forces in Syria. That list included noted "post-colonial" scholars and anthropologists, united in their belief in "democracy promotion" and remaking Syria into something palatable to them, with the right leaders in place. Five years later and a smaller group -- including feminists like Gloria Steinem and Judith Butler, anarchists like Noam Chomsky and the anthropologist David Graeber, the Marxist David Harvey, and advocates of recolonization like Michael Walzer -- placed their bets on socialist Kurdish militias, presumably increasing the value of their bet by the important sign value of their brand name authority. Ironically, in the process of reimagining legendary Rojava as the site of a second Spanish Civil War, they were openly collaborating with Donald Trump (not naming him directly, since "the US government" was more convenient). These signatories were thus complicit with the very same commander-in-chief of the armed forces they were calling on for support of Syrian Kurds. They wanted "the US government," whose President is Donald Trump, to impose sanctions on Turkey, and to develop a foreign policy that put Kurdish interests at the forefront. You can be sure that, elsewhere, in front of different crowds, they return to "the Resistance" by puffing up their little chests and sounding all "anti-Trump" -- but when it came to cheering their favourite band of ethnic anarchists, they could dispense with appearances. Less "prestigious" characters, publishing in a less "prestigious" outlet, countered the call to "defend Rojava", a call which appropriated "progressive" politics for the cause of imperialism (thus reigniting an old marriage). (David Harvey, by the way, having cashed in on abundant sales of his volume, The New Imperialism, has recently changed his mind: he has decided that imperialism is merely a metaphor, "rather than anything real". Out of curiosity, we have to wonder if "capitalism" is also a metaphor, rather than anything real, seeing how Marxists have linked capitalism with imperialism. Perhaps even socialism is a metaphor, rather than anything real."

This Canadian has a lot to say well worth reading!!!!!

https://zeroanthropology.net/2018/10/06/syria-the-new-terra-nullius/

https://syria360.wordpress.com/2018/11/04/syria-the-new-terra-nullius/

[Nov 03, 2018] Withdrawing From the INF Treaty Is One of Trump's Most Dangerous Moves Yet

Nov 03, 2018 | original.antiwar.com

It's important to note why the INF Treaty was negotiated in the first place.

In the 1970s, the Soviets developed and began deploying a new "intermediate range" nuclear missile that threatened Europe, Asia, North Africa, and Alaska. The United States responded by deploying "Pershing II" missiles to Germany and Ground Launched Cruise Missiles to several NATO nations in Europe. The Soviet SS-20 and American Pershing II ballistic missiles would have been particularly destabilizing in a crisis by virtue of their short, six- to eleven-minute flight times to target.

Recognizing the danger, US and Soviet leaders agreed upon the INF Treaty, which prohibited the entire class of ground-launched intermediate-range nuclear weapons. The INF entered into force in 1988, and since then 2,692 missiles have been verifiably removed or destroyed.

The INF contributed to the end of the Cold War and played a significant role in reducing the global arms race. The INF also opened the door for other historic nuclear disarmament treaties to be pursued through diplomatic channels. If the United States unilaterally withdrew from the INF, it would set a dangerous and woefully irresponsible precedent for all nuclear-armed nations to renege on their disarmament responsibilities.

In a statement responding to the president's announcement, the European Union declared, "The world doesn't need a new arms race that would benefit no one and on the contrary would bring even more instability."

They're not alone. In the days since Trump's announcement, foreign policy experts, diplomats, former US government officials, and even leaders of other nations have spoken out in opposition to the proposed United States withdrawal from the treaty. Even Mark Hamill, Luke Skywalker himself, has weighed in .

The United States must negotiate with all nuclear-armed countries for total elimination of their nuclear arsenals. In the meantime, it is critical that the INF remain in force, with both parties fully and demonstrably adhering to the terms of this vital international agreement.

If the Trump administration continues along its present foolhardy course, then Congress should use the power of the purse and refuse to fund anything that would support new intermediate-range weapons.

JMartin Fleck is the Nuclear Weapons Abolition Program Director at Physicians for Social Responsibility . Reprinted with permission from Foreign Policy In Focus .

[Nov 03, 2018] Truman Delayed End of WWII to Demonstrate Nuclear Weapons - Daniel Ellsberg on RAI (3-8)

Notable quotes:
"... To intimidate the Soviet Union and prove to Congress the nuclear program should be funded, Truman dropped nuclear weapons on Japan ..."
Nov 02, 2018 | therealnews.com

To intimidate the Soviet Union and prove to Congress the nuclear program should be funded, Truman dropped nuclear weapons on Japan to end the war; no scientist came forward to warn of the dangers to life on earth, says Daniel Ellsberg on Reality Asserts Itself with Paul Jay

DANIEL ELLSBERG: Yes. You know, a more even controversial episode is that Heisenberg- the one who had made the estimate on atmospheric ignition as a possibility, but it would take too long for the bomb- indicated in various ways that he was reluctant to see a bomb coming to Hitler's hands, even though he had joined the Nazi party and he was a very patriotic German, did not want to see Germany to lose the war. But when they learned of the bomb they were discussing being tapped, wiretapped, by the British where they were in custody saying, you know, we didn't really want to do it. Had we wanted to, we would have seen through these obstacles and moved ahead.

American physicists took very great exception to the thesis presented by Thomas Powers on Heisenberg's war, and so forth, that the Germans might have had more qualms than they did, in effect, than Heisenberg- you know, that was a very offensive idea. And he had gone to see Niels Bohr, the father of quantum physics, who came over later and helped the bomb project, in Denmark in a in a quite controversial issue. Heisenberg indicated that he wanted to see if Bohr could find a way of collaborating with the Western scientists in not bringing this bomb about at all. Bohr didn't read what he was saying that way. He thought that he was feeling him out to discover how advanced the Americans were, the British were. Anyway, they were at odds on this point. And it's definitely not settled as to what Heisenberg's actual motives were on that point. But it is interesting how offended, how very the Americans just dismissed any idea.

But actually, it isn't that hard to explain, in a way, because two things. From the American side, the very plausible idea that the Germans were ahead just dismissed virtually all moral considerations from what they were doing. And that's understandable. I couldn't say that then or now, as I am now, I would have felt differently on that point in that light, whether they should move ahead to try to at least match whatever the Germans had. The Germans for that, from their side, didn't have that consideration. They weren't that afraid. They might or might not have been concerned about whether Hitler should have it.

But I will say this. Many of the scientists who were early on in this process, in particular Leo Szilard, fled Nazi Germany right after the Reichstag fire. He went and became an emigre in London, then in the U.S. because of what he saw Hitler would mean. He was sure that war was coming at that point. As he said, by the way, because he was sure the Germans would not resist. Not because they would be enthusiastic about what he was doing, but they wouldn't oppose him effectively. And so he left Germany.

He had the thought that very year in 1933, the possibility of a chain reaction- the first to have that notion- that a heavy element being split by neutrons might emit more neutrons in an explosive, exponential chain reaction, and produce both energy or an enormous explosion. And he patented that idea and gave it to the Admiralty so that would not be known, he thought, to the Germans. He was very anxious that Hitler not get that idea. Later, he was- when he concluded, after uranium had been split. And he concluded with an experiment that he did that it did release extra neutrons in the course of this. He said he shut off the device that was showing this process with a sense that the world was sure to come to grief. In other words, he saw and others saw right from the beginning that this was something that could threaten civilization, and possibly the existence of humanity.

Two other points. In concern that the Germans would get it first, it was Szilard who drafted the letter for Einstein to send- his colleague- to send to Roosevelt, asking, telling about the German possibility, and that we should start a program so that the Germans did not get it first. So he was the, Szilard was a critical figure in getting the program started. Finally, working with Enrico Fermi, that I mentioned earlier, in Chicago, at what they called for cover the Metallurgical Lab, they started the first working reactor, then called a pile, that would demonstrate that you could control the reaction and produce plutonium. The reactors were essential to producing the Pu-239 that was eventually used as the core of the Nagasaki bomb. For most bombs, now. That night, the scientists who were present all celebrated with a bottle of Chianti, and Szilard stayed behind and said to Fermi, "This day may go down as a black day in the history of humanity."

So, some say it was evident from the beginning that this had a potential of, you know, the most, when we say existential threat, literally the case. Not for the globe. Atmospheric ignition, even that would not destroy the earth. Just all the conditions for life on it. It would go like a rock through space. But that was, turned out with a number of tests, finally, that wasn't a big problem. But destroying cities, that's what it was made for, essentially. And by '42 the British had made their major project in the war, having been thrown off the continent earlier, the destroying of cities by firebombing.

PAUL JAY: OK. Before we go there, let me just follow up one thing. When Germany loses the war, and- as you said- there's no other nuclear power, why didn't the American scientists quit the program?

DANIEL ELLSBERG: They worked harder. When Germany ended the war they were pressed to redouble their efforts to get the bomb. Basically, people like Gar Alperovitz, but many others have concluded in the end, in order to have the bomb before the war ended. Which, with the war ended there'd be no excuse for demonstrating it on a city.

PAUL JAY: No, I get why the American military and the government wanted to keep it going. But why didn't the scientists quit?

DANIEL ELLSBERG: They don't have a good answer. Many of them have asked later- they were pressed to do it for national security. And of course, the Japanese too- for all they knew, like the American public, not knowing that the Japanese were discussing, and discussing with their ambassadors in Soviet Union and elsewhere, and with the Soviets their desire to end the war if the Emperor could be kept. There were other conditions that the Army wanted. They wanted more than that even after the bombs. But the Emperor and the people close to him and in the foreign ministry were ready to end the war.

Oppenheimer and the others didn't know that. And they knew that the Japanese were fighting very hard. And the idea of ending the war sooner rather than later- they were actually contributing, in effect, to keeping the war going. Had there been no program, the- almost surely, had there been no bomb program, the offer to negotiate with the Japanese would have been earlier, instead of waiting for the bomb.

PAUL JAY: But the military wanted to be able to prove they had the bomb.

DANIEL ELLSBERG: No, it wasn't the military so much. It was actually Truman and Burns, his foreign secretary. No, the military were in favor of making the offer, on the whole.

And in a matter of fact, here is an almost funny thing in retrospect. LeMay, who was in charge of dropping the bomb in the Pacific, was under Tooey Spaatz, who was in charge of all the Pacific Air Forces. Neither of them were very enthusiastic about the idea of demonstrating the bomb. As Spaatz put it later when he heard about the bomb, how could we justify a large Air Force when the atom bomb exists? Even against Russia, one plane does the work of 300. Now, we have 300. But how do you justify ever using them day after day to burn cities to the ground? And we were doing that. And we killed more people that way, by firebombing, on the night of March 9 and 10, 1945 in Tokyo than either Hiroshima or Nagasaki.

In the spring- or actually, after May of 1945 when the Germans had surrendered, so now we're just facing Japan- for the first time, really, a committee was was put together under James Franck. A Nobel Prize winner who, by the way, regretted his role and Germany's role in introducing poison gas to the world in the First World War, and concluded in his own mind that if the occasion ever arose again, he would demand real consideration in his new country, the U.S., a role, a voice at least, in the policy implications of this scientific development.

So the Franck committee, which included Szilard, and as its rapporteur Eugene Rabinowitz, who later became the head of the Federation of American Scientists, and the editor of The Bulletin of Atomic Scientists, with its doomsday clock. Rabinowitz was for many years the editor of that. And they concluded- as I said earlier, the first group really to be looking at it, thinking, amazingly enough, at the problem of where are we going with this? What are the implications of it? What does it mean for the world to have this weapon, and what can we do about it? Should have been done earlier. As I say, I believe if Rotblat had told people they were not racing Germany, they would have had this process months, six months earlier, in the fall, and possibly had much more influence on the final decision.

As I say, their recommendations, that the implications of the U.S. using this as a weapon in war- one bomb, one city- a weapon that would soon become much larger, there would be thousands of them, and would be supplanted by a weapon that was a thousand times more than this, that they thought should not be undertaken. That should be an effort in international control, and that required not having a monopoly of the bomb and using it in warfare. So we should at least, as Niels Bohr said, bring the Russians in as partners. The alternative being they would get it as adversaries within a few years in a cold war, which is what did happen.

So the front committee then met and had these conclusions, which did not get up through channels to the president. Rabinowitz, I learned only in the last couple of years in a thing that was not really published until quite recently, during the Franck Committee proceedings after the report was finished made the proposal that they should reveal, they should go beyond the bounds of security, and reveal to the public, the press and the public, not the details of bomb making, but the fact that this enormous weapon was in prospect and was about to be used. He actually put that in writing. I've never seen anything in writing, ever, like that in government. In effect, a proposal by a government insider to leak.

Obviously, leaks happen all the time. not with much discussion, usually. people don't want other people to know they might be a source. But in this case, Rabinowitz actually made that proposal, and nothing came of it. Then, however, he revealed in a letter to the New York Times in 1971, in June- a time very vivid in my memory because his letter came out in the New York Times while Patricia and I, my wife and I, were eluding the FBI. We were they say underground putting out the Pentagon Papers for 13 days while the FBI was searching for us. So I didn't see this at the time. I wasn't seeing the New York Times. I saw it many years later that while we were underground, he put out this letter saying, in the matter of Daniel Ellsberg that his under public discussion now- they were searching for me- he said, I myself spent sleepless nights in the spring of 1945 considering that I should reveal to the public this prospect- I'm paraphrasing here a little bit, but I remember the sleepless nights very well. And how his letter ended: I still believe that had I done so, I would have been justified. It would have been the right thing to do. Well, indeed, had Americans known about this, as Rabinowitz said later, I have no illusions that they might have supported the use of the bomb anyway. But at least they would have responsibility. They would have known what we were getting into.

And Szilard, by the way, was meanwhile putting a petition together, which eventually had more than 100 scientists, calling at first for not using the bomb even if it would save lives, and then to get more signers saying at least it should not be done without a demonstration, without the serious consideration of the moral concerns. None of this got to Truman. And in fact, Szilard was forbidden to publish the petition, that it had occurred, for decades. And when they finally did publish that there had a petition, they were unwilling to release the names of the scientists with the authority. In other words, that there was this alternative.

The point of all this is that time after time, I think, decisions were made in secret, at high levels, without real consideration of long-term implications of this or of alternative paths; without knowledge that the scientists had of what was coming, or where this might lead, and so forth. And there were people who saw the dangers of this so clearly, that they knew that civilization was in danger. I could go into the same story with respect to the H bomb. And in each case, each one decided to keep his clearance- they were all men- at the time. As a matter of fact, Hans Bethe's wife was one person, who was a physicist, who when Hans told her about the H bomb they were imagining in 1942 said, do you really want to be part of this? And she's the one person on record as sort of having told one of the scientists, think again about this. But Szilard, as I say, they all wanted to say, well, the Germans are in the process, or later the Russians are in the process, and they put aside moral considerations. But not one of them took the step of acting on his concerns and fears to bring the public and the Congress into the picture, and to have a discussion of whether this was the way that we wanted to go.

The bottom line for me is from the time they knew that Germany did not have the bomb- and I'm saying now the fall of '45 for the British, at least, and Rotblat- the overwhelming consideration about that bomb should have been how do we keep it from being an instrument of national policy, by us or anybody? Now, that was far from the minds of the people at the top. The idea of having a monopoly of it was so irresistible. There was no discussion whatever of not doing it at that level. They say the Franck notion didn't get to them. And they didn't- Franck didn't tell them, Rabinowitz didn't tell them, Szilard didn't tell them. By the way, the FBI were afraid that Szilard, knowing his views, would leak on this, that he was under constant surveillance. But as far as we know, it didn't occur to him to actually tell. C.P. Snow, who had been in charge of scientific recruitment at one point- later a novelist in Britain, I've read all his novels- commented, actually, on my case, in Esquire, after I was indicted for the Pentagon Papers, along with several other people. And he said, I would not- you know, I had sworn an oath not to tell secrets. I would not have done what Ellsberg did. However, I do have the feeling that if Einstein had been made aware of what was coming, he would have found a way to tell the public and bring them in.

It's very interesting what if- you know, conjecture. Because as a matter of fact, Szilard did meet with Einstein in '45 to send his report, or his views, to Roosevelt. And before that was actually set up Roosevelt died, and he was sidetracked over to Burns, who didn't sympathize with this at all. But he couldn't tell Einstein why he wanted to see Roosevelt, because Einstein wasn't cleared. Einstein was a pacifist. Not about World War II, not about Hitler. But he was generally a pacifist; later head of the War Resisters League. And they didn't trust him. So he didn't get a clearance, and he was never involved in the Manhattan Project, having laid the theoretical foundations for it himself earlier. Szilard didn't tell Einstein, because that would have put his own clearance in jeopardy, frankly. And they warned him. Groves and others warned him. Keep in mind, this stuff is classified. Your clearance is at stake here, and so forth.

No one actually came out, in the end. Oppenheimer, others who opposed the H bomb, did not reveal to a totally unwitting and ignorant public or Congress what they knew, having been persuaded that that would be unpatriotic. It would be not gentlemanly. That's what Dean Acheson told them. Don't let them know why you are resigning from the General Advisory Commission. In fact, don't resign at this time, because people will ask you why. Don't tell them the reason is because an H bomb threatens the existence of humanity.

Fermi, on the General Advisory Commission at that time along with Isidor Rabi, signed a report saying the super, the thermonuclear weapon, is in itself an evil thing. It should not exist. And they even with Rabi proposed something like a test ban, moratorium. We won't test first unless you do. But Truman overruled Fermi, and worked on the bomb; Bethe worked on the bomb. They all did, you know, patriotically and whatnot. And that's why we're where we are. Nobody felt, on the one hand, strongly enough to risk their own careers and their own status. Or to put in a little better light, their own identity as people who were trusted by the president to keep his secrets, whatever they were, was so important to them that it didn't even occur to them that the public maybe ought to know about this. Where Rabinowitz is an interesting exception is he did wrestle with that.

PAUL JAY: OK. In the next segment of our interview we're going to talk about those firebombings, and how in 1942 the British established the precedent for it. Please join us for Reality Asserts Itself with Daniel Ellsberg on The Real News Network.

[Nov 02, 2018] By Way Of Deception - False Flag Terror Acts Press Europe To Sanction Iran by B

Looks like Iran was "Skripaled". Intelligence agencies are now capable to perform false flag operation in thier home countries and blame other government with absolute impunity.
Notable quotes:
"... Israels secret service Mossad, with the CIA behind it, is framing Iran with alleged assassination plots in Europe. ..."
"... It is unlikely that Iran would take action in Europe, which it urgently needs to reduce the damage of U.S. sanction, over an incident for which it already punished the Islamic State. ..."
"... The Danish claims are allegedly based on information provided by Mossad. That only increases the suspicion that the assassination plot is a false flag operation similar to a recent one in Belgium. More likely though is that the CIA is behind such false flag incidents. ..."
"... Bahram Ghasemi, Iran's Foreign Ministry spokesman, said Iran "re-emphasized" to the diplomats a previous warning about the presence in their respective countries of members of a group that Iran classifies as a terrorist group and wants arrested and prosecuted. ..."
"... On October 30 Denmark suddenly accused Iran of an assassination plot against a leader of the ASMLA group ..."
"... It indeed seems that Danish government, led by the rightwing Venstre party, is collaborating with the U.S. and Britain to sabotage the European position against U.S. sanctions on Iran ..."
"... The former Secretary General of NATO and U.S. stooge Anders Fogh Rasmussen is the predecessor of the current Venstre party leader and Danish premier Lars Løkke Rasmussen. Both are hawks. ..."
"... Yesterday Israeli journalist reported that the information on which Denmark acted came from Israel ..."
"... Iran's foreign minister accuses Israel of running false flag operations to frame Iran ..."
"... Times of Israel ..."
"... Iran has no interest in causing any upheaval with Europe shortly before the second round of U.S. sanctions, which threaten its economic well being, come into place early this month. Iran already took revenge for the Ahvaz attack. It has no need to tackle some unrelated separatist who resides in Denmark. Iran needs Europe to work around the U.S. sanctions. That aim prohibits any such operations. ..."
"... Both, the MEK plot as well as the case in Denmark, smell of false flag incidents. In both case no one was hurt. In both cases some stooges with no current relation to Iran were caught. Both cases came to light after information was allegedly provided by Mossad ..."
"... "Both, the MEK plot as well as the case in Denmark, smell of false flag incidents. In both case no one was hurt." Just like with the "bombs" shipped to a few US "liberals" recently. ..."
"... It was only going to be a matter of time until Iran got Skripalled. Iran's Foreign Minister Javad Zarif Tweets a list : "Incredible series of coincidences. Or, a simple chronology of a MOSSAD program to kill the JCPOA?" ..."
Nov 02, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

Israels secret service Mossad, with the CIA behind it, is framing Iran with alleged assassination plots in Europe.

In September a terror attack killed some 30 people in Iran. Two entities, an Arab separatist movement as well as the Islamic State terror group ISIS, took responsibility. After an investigation Iran found that it was ISIS which was responsible. It took revenge against the identified culprits.

Six weeks later Denmark claims, without providing evidence, that Iran tried to assassinate a leader of the Arab separatist movement over the incident. Iran denies any such attempt. The right wing Danish government uses the claim to urge other European countries to sanction Iran.

It is unlikely that Iran would take action in Europe, which it urgently needs to reduce the damage of U.S. sanction, over an incident for which it already punished the Islamic State.

The Danish claims are allegedly based on information provided by Mossad. That only increases the suspicion that the assassination plot is a false flag operation similar to a recent one in Belgium. More likely though is that the CIA is behind such false flag incidents.

The details:

On September 22 gunmen killed 29 and wounded more than 70 participants and onlookers of a veterans day parade in Ahvaz, Iran:

Three of the attackers were gunned down during clashes with the security forces and one other was arrested, news agencies reported.
...
"The terrorists disguised as Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) and Basiji (volunteer) forces opened fire to the authority and people from behind the stand during the parade," the governor of Khuzestan, Gholam-Reza Shariati, said, according to IRNA.

U.S. State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert also referred to the attack as terrorism. Nauert said on Saturday, "We stand with the Iranian people against the scourge of radical Islamic terrorism and express our sympathy to them at this terrible time".

The Islamic State as well as an Arab separatist movement claimed responsibility :

On 22 September 2018, Yaqoob Al-Ahvaz claimed responsibility for the 2018 Ahvaz military parade attack in comments to UK-based Iran International TV. He said that his group Ahvaz National Resistance, a part of Arab Struggle Movement for the Liberation of Ahvaz, has "no choice but to resist." On 23 September, a statement made in The Hague, Netherlands, on the ASMLA website, denied responsibility for the attack, saying that the claim was made by a "group that was expelled from the organization since 2015."

After Yaqoob Al-Ahvaz claimed responsibility Iran accused Saudi Arabia of involvement in the attack:

IRGC spokesman Ramezan Sharif said the attackers were affiliated with a terrorist group supported by Saudi Arabia, Iran's state-run Press TV said.

"The individuals who fired at the people and the armed forces during the parade are connected to the al-Ahvaziya group which is fed by Saudi Arabia," Sharif said. Saudi Arabia has yet to respond to the allegations.

The UK-based Iran International TV, where Yaqoob Al-Ahvaz claimed responsibility, is funded by a firm with ties to Prince Mohammed bin Salman .

Several years ago ASMLA aka Al-Ahvaziya committed several terror attacks in Iran. Its leaders live in the Netherlands and Denmark.

Iran immediately reminded those countries of their duties:

Iran's Foreign Ministry summoned the ambassadors of the Netherlands and Denmark, along with a senior British diplomat on Saturday to issue a strong protest the attack, Iran's state-run media reports.

Bahram Ghasemi, Iran's Foreign Ministry spokesman, said Iran "re-emphasized" to the diplomats a previous warning about the presence in their respective countries of members of a group that Iran classifies as a terrorist group and wants arrested and prosecuted.

According to IRNA, Ghasemi said "it is unacceptable" that members of a terrorist group be allowed in those countries and not be included on the European Union's terror list only because they have not committed crimes on European soil.

A few days later though, Iran concluded that the attack was not committed by the Ahvaz movement, but by the Islamic State. On October 1 it responded with a missile salvo that hit Islamic State facilities in Syria:

The Iranian Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) announced they have bombed a site in eastern Syria in retaliation to the terrorist attack against a military parade in Iranian Ahvaz 10 days ago.

...

The IRGC confirmed that the targeted terrorist group was behind the terror attack that killed over a dozen and injured many more in the city of Ahvaz.

An additional operation against the planers of the attack took place on October 15 in Iraq:

Iran's Revolutionary Guards said on Tuesday they had killed the "mastermind" behind an attack on a military parade in the Iranian city of Ahvaz last month which left 25 people dead, nearly half of them members of the Guards.

The Guards said in a statement published on state media their forces had killed a man named Abu Zaha and four other militants in Diyala province in Iraq. One news website run by Iran's state television said Abu Zaha was a member of Islamic State.

That closed the issue for Iran.

On October 30 Denmark suddenly accused Iran of an assassination plot against a leader of the ASMLA group:

Danish Prime Minister Lars Lokke Rasmussen described the alleged planned assassination by Iran of an exiled separatist leader in Denmark as "totally unacceptable"

The Iranian ambassador to Copenhagen was summoned to the foreign ministry over the allegations. A Norwegian citizen of Iranian origin was arrested in Sweden on 21 October in connection with the alleged plan. The man denies the charges. Authorities conducted a massive manhunt on 28 September which led to road closures, trains and ferries being cancelled, and bridges being shut across Denmark.

On Tuesday, Danish intelligence chief Finn Borch Andersen confirmed the measures had been taken to prevent the alleged plot.

The Danish intelligence accused the Norwegian citizens of taking pictures of a house where one of the ASMLA leader lives. It provide no evidence for its claims. Iran rejected the accusations:

An Iranian foreign ministry spokesman said such "biased reports" and allegations pursued " the enemy's plots and conspiracies" to harm the developing relations between Iran and Europe , according to Tasnim news agency.

It indeed seems that Danish government, led by the rightwing Venstre party, is collaborating with the U.S. and Britain to sabotage the European position against U.S. sanctions on Iran:

Mr Rasmussen said, after a meeting with his British counterpart Theresa May in Oslo, that he appreciated her support. "In close collaboration with UK and other countries we will stand up to Iran," he tweeted. Foreign Minister Anders Samuelsen said Denmark would discuss further actions with European partners in the coming days.

The US Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo, congratulated Denmark on arresting "an Iranian regime assassin".

The former Secretary General of NATO and U.S. stooge Anders Fogh Rasmussen is the predecessor of the current Venstre party leader and Danish premier Lars Løkke Rasmussen. Both are hawks.

Yesterday Israeli journalist reported that the information on which Denmark acted came from Israel:

Barak Ravid @BarakRavid - 10:12 utc- 31 Oct 2018

BREAKING: Israeli Mossad gave Danish Security and Intelligence Service (PET) the information about the assassination attempt planned by Iranian intelligence service against the leader of the Iranian opposition organization ASMLA, Israeli official tells me

Well - if Israeli officials says Iran did something bad that will surely be true. (Not.)

Iran's foreign minister accuses Israel of running false flag operations to frame Iran :

Javad Zarif @JZarif - 20:15 utc - 31 Oct 2018

Mossad's perverse & stubborn planting of false flags (more on this later) only strengthens our resolve to engage constructively with the world. [...]

The Times of Israel notes :

Denmark's accusations against Iran followed the unveiling of another suspected Iranian plot to target a Paris rally by an opposition group in June. According to Israeli reports, the Mossad helped thwart that attack as well , which led to the arrest of several Iranians in Europe, including a diplomat.

The earlier plot involved two members of the anti-Iranian terror cult MEK in Belgium who were caught with explosives that they allegedly wanted to use to blow up a MEK conference in Paris:

The allegation that an Iranian operative plotted an attack on French soil is jeopardizing Europe's support for the accord. As U.S. and Israeli officials ramp up pressure on Europe to sever ties with Tehran, they have cited it as a reason why Mr. Macron and other leaders should end their support for the deal.

On Tuesday, Denmark announced it had foiled an Iranian operation to kill a dissident, turning up the pressure on Europe to harden its posture toward Tehran. A spokesman for Iran's foreign ministry said Iran had no involvement in the case.

The most interesting question about such plots is always "Cui bono?". Who benefits from these incidents?

Iran has no interest in causing any upheaval with Europe shortly before the second round of U.S. sanctions, which threaten its economic well being, come into place early this month. Iran already took revenge for the Ahvaz attack. It has no need to tackle some unrelated separatist who resides in Denmark. Iran needs Europe to work around the U.S. sanctions. That aim prohibits any such operations.

Both, the MEK plot as well as the case in Denmark, smell of false flag incidents. In both case no one was hurt. In both cases some stooges with no current relation to Iran were caught. Both cases came to light after information was allegedly provided by Mossad .

But is it really Israel who set up these incidents? Both serve U.S. interest just as much. It is no secret that the U.S. wants to prevent European subversion of U.S. sanctions on Iran.

In June 2017 the Trump administration installed a new CIA group to plot and launch undercover operations against Iran. It is led by its most ruthless operator:

He is known as the Dark Prince or Ayatollah Mike, nicknames he earned as the Central Intelligence Agency officer who oversaw the hunt for Osama bin Laden and the American drone strike campaign that killed thousands of Islamist militants and hundreds of civilians.

Now the official, Michael D'Andrea, has a new job. He is running the C.I.A.'s Iran operations, according to current and former intelligence officials, an appointment that is the first major sign that the Trump administration is invoking the hard line the president took against Iran during his campaign.

Mr. D'Andrea's new role is one of a number of moves inside the spy agency that signal a more muscular approach to covert operations under the leadership of Mike Pompeo, the conservative Republican and former congressman, the officials said.

A year later the same Mike Pompeo, now Secretary of State, created the Iran Action Group within the State Department. It is a complementary entity to the CIA group. Little has been published about the action both groups have taken so far. What has Ayatollah Mike done since he set up shop 18 month ago?

It is likely that the false flag operations in Europe, like the ones in Belgium and Denmark, are run by the CIA with the Mossad only in an auxiliary role. The U.S. can hardly admit that it is faking terrorist incidents in Europe while the overrated Mossad loves to take credit for everything that happens on this world.

Europe has no interest in supporting or escalating Trump's war on Iran. EU countries should demand hard evidence from Denmark and other accusers of Iran and should not act on the basis of only vague accusations.

Posted by b on November 1, 2018 at 10:30 AM | Permalink

Comments Iran should sue the puppet state Denmark. End of story

worldblee , Nov 1, 2018 10:59:28 AM | link

Israel is regarded as a beneficent country with no ulterior motives by western governments and media. Every time, you can count on like clockwork, no matter how outrageous or self serving the claim.
Occidentosis , Nov 1, 2018 11:08:14 AM | link
@mark2 about yemen you should read peter konig's Khashoggi versus 50,000 Slaughtered Yemeni Children Peter Koenig
https://thesaker.is/khashoggi-versus-50000-slaughtered-yemeni-children-peter-koenig-26-october-2018/
james , Nov 1, 2018 11:17:21 AM | link
thanks b.. i agree with your analysis here.. the usa needs to keep its puppet states. on a string... cia has a long history of these types of actions.. i am surprised at how easily or convenient it is for the puppets to continue as puppets.. and of course as we approach the nov 5 th financial santion bs from the evil empire that claims equality for all (after usa and israel are cared for) will be trying to alienate the rest of the world to iran as much as possible.. the timing here is in line with that goal post.. very predictible, just like our local shill who will claim it is iran as opposed to usa-israel-ksa and etc, that pull this shit regularly.. the same ugly crew responsible for supporting terrorism as witnessed in syria, yemen and etc further back are at work here... predictible..

i suspect more bs to come from these same state sponsored liars....

Mark2 , Nov 1, 2018 11:50:38 AM | link
And just take a look at Britain's disgusting priority's money is more important than preventing / stopping US/UK genacide !
https://mobile.twitter.com/BaFana3/status/1057698127623438336/photo/1
Gary Weglarz , Nov 1, 2018 11:57:22 AM | link
The complete and utter amorality of the West on display yet again, as if we needed any more examples. There is certainly compelling evidence that a group of "extremists" are endangering all of humanity and the entire planet, the only problem for Western MSM in reporting on this is that those "extremists" are in fact the ruling elites of the West and their "allies" in Saudi Arabia and Israel.
Clueless Joe , Nov 1, 2018 11:59:44 AM | link
"Both, the MEK plot as well as the case in Denmark, smell of false flag incidents. In both case no one was hurt." Just like with the "bombs" shipped to a few US "liberals" recently.
WJ , Nov 1, 2018 12:01:42 PM | link
I thought the War on Terror dictated that the whole world was the battlefield. What's the difference between Iran trying to take down a terrorist in Denmark and the US trying to take one down in Pakistan or Afghanistan or Africa?
karlof1 , Nov 1, 2018 12:16:51 PM | link
It was only going to be a matter of time until Iran got Skripalled. Iran's Foreign Minister Javad Zarif Tweets a list : "Incredible series of coincidences. Or, a simple chronology of a MOSSAD program to kill the JCPOA?"

Please note the last listed "coincidence."

Also on Zarif's Twitter is a video segment of his interview with Face The Nation and other important announcements. This is what he said about the Pittsburg attack:

"Extremism and terrorism know no race or religion, and must be condemned in all cases. The world deserves better than to have to live with weaponized demagoguery. Thoughts and prayers with victims of terrorist attack on Pittsburgh synagogue and their loved ones." [My Emphasis]

The nations of the world have had the following choice to make for awhile now, and I'd say the choice can no longer be kicked down the road:

Either blindly follow the two prevaricating Outlaw Nations--United States and Israel--or stand with Russia, China, and others in supporting proven truths and upholding the fundamental principles of International Law as expressed via the UN Charter. In other words, it's past time to review GW Bush's dicta: Either you're with us or against us--abet the lawbreakers or join the posse to contain them.

b , Nov 1, 2018 12:17:18 PM | link
@Mark2 - NO MORE ONE-LINERS FROM YOU or I will ban you.

Every time you come up to this site you disrupt all discussions here by posting 10+ one-line comments.

All those have the same characteristic. They are useless.

Stop this nonsense. Write decent comments that are on the subject of the post or just go away.

ben , Nov 1, 2018 12:19:24 PM | link
The evil empire and their bought minions are infecting the globe. They will never stop until their domination by organised $ brings surfs everywhere under their control.

These forces do not believe in a "middle class", they believe the wealthiest should rule because it creates a more stable and predictable society..

A society Charles Dickens wrote about. Wonderful...

Ger , Nov 1, 2018 12:29:25 PM | link
One needs a high level of stupid among the western population to sell bull s... by the buckets. But then again, that is US and allies. As was said: Too stupid to realize they are stupid. In the US the most trusted institution is the military. Proof enough?
Mark2 , Nov 1, 2018 12:35:54 PM | link
'B' that's o k i'll Just go away good bye good luck, and thanks for having me.
james , Nov 1, 2018 1:34:01 PM | link
about MEK, the terrorist group... our shithead exprime minister steven harper was singing the praises of them the past month.... apparenlty stevie just can't do enough for israel and zionism, and if the canuck media which is essentialy bought and paid for by the same interests has its way, we will get a similar insane gov't after trudeau light is finished his term... apparently canucks are one cycle behind the usa in electing its leaders... it will be a trump type israel subservient toad for next pm of cauckistan... i sure wish the western political players weren't so beholden to neoliberalism. and we had someone even half the leader putin is.... but, we don't....
Vitaliy , Nov 1, 2018 2:12:05 PM | link
East by not responding strongly to West provocations is begging for war.
East by crying for West for cooperation is begging for war.
And since East and West are controlled by the same same cabal - war is inevitable.
Just ask Mr. Kissinger...
hans , Nov 1, 2018 2:19:10 PM | link
The Edomites, who after Rome's extermination of the remnant of the House of Israel at Jerusalem began calling themselves "Jews" for "controlled opposition" for "the real Anti-Christ" "engine for enslaving mankind" we founded God's America to escape, become sex perverts, including incesting Sabbatean Frankists - hence the Manchu-baldness, as a consequence of their satanic cult's ritual sodomy of innocent toddlers while being rabbinically inculcated as "gods chosen by God to rule the world."

It is, in fact, the Synagogue of Satan.

notheonly1 , Nov 1, 2018 2:25:25 PM | link
Wow. Thank You for this one. After reading this excellent assessment of the present situation, of which we might only know the most shallow facts, I had to do a search (DDG) about Iran during the time of the first openly Fascist Europe - being described as having emanated from 3rd-Reich-Germany and Italy.
I was unaware that there was an Anglo-Soviet Invasion of Iran , because of the alleged sympathy of the Shah's Iran with Nazi-Germany. The Brits and the Russians were buddies then and wanted to prevent that Iranian oil is accessible to Nazi-Germany.

All over sudden I am confused that the Brits invaded shoulder to shoulder with Soviet forces Iran - while now, besides delivering the political ham theater of saber rattling against Russia, supporting terror and instigating sanctions against Iran again.

To make things much worse to comprehend, one is to wonder how many European countries actually did join Nazi Germany without much ado at the time, based on the fact that the Scandinavians and the Netherlands are now as Fascist as Nazi Germany was during its short 1000 years of glory. Does anybody else get the impression that this was always this way? That we have been lied to about everything regarding Fascism? That it was never Fascism that was the problem in Europe - as it appears to do very well there - but a strong Germany that could have easily governed its territory via effective 'bureaucracy'. All of Europe.

The truth is, that the stench of Fascism today, was already stinking badly in the 20th century, but was never really a problem. The problem were the Germans. And somehow, the Germans want to continue to have economic ties with Iran. Is this how history repeats itself - minus the marching Soviet/Russian and British buddy forces?

Quite ludicrous the whole theater.

Vitaliy , Nov 1, 2018 2:38:54 PM | link
19
Earth been damned and given to Worldmaster to rule - what else one needs to know?
craigsummers , Nov 1, 2018 2:48:11 PM | link
How many false flag operations have been invoked to explain unpopular events in recent years? The British government was behind the attempted murder of Skripal. All of the chemical attacks launched against the opposition in Syria were false flag operations to bring the US into the war (which amounted to nothing burgers anyway). Ray McGovern hypothesized the US used the Vault 7 tools as a false flag to blame Russia for the DNC hack. Is there any end to false flag speculation?

Who cares if the Iranians deny the charge? That means absolutely nothing. Russia has been lying and denying for years. Additionally, that Mossad would have provided the information to Denmark and France is completely logical since they have been collecting intelligence on Iran for years - and have been dealing with Iranian-supported terrorists for decades.

There is no evidence for a false flag operation. Sure it's a possibility (it's always a possibility), but the current evidence points toward Iranian plans to murder dissidents. The British were right about Skripal. The Dutch were right about MH17. Ray McGovern was wrong about the CIA hacking the DNC - and the likely result of this investigation is that Iran planned to murder a couple of dissidents. In lieu of the stupidity exhibited by the Saudis in the Khashoggi murder, it's completely believable.

With all of that said, this is a well thought out attempt to blame the US.

Red Ryder , Nov 1, 2018 3:00:44 PM | link
Denmark has become another UK, willing to perform any act and light any fuse against Russia, Iran or any nation that challenges the hegemony of US, EU and NATO.

Just a subservient vassal, self-degradating. I would compare Denmark to a whore, but that defames those poor souls.

The Danes are like Brits. There, I said it. Nothing worse than the official scumbags of Britain. Pity the good folks of both countries.

Such a little country desperately trying to hide their true Nazi soul, fabricating events and promulgating Fake News and bogus Intel.
In service to big Hegemon and little hegemon (Israel).

Just disgusting.

b , Nov 1, 2018 3:07:09 PM | link
@craig - With all of that said, this is a well thought out attempt to blame the US.

Thanks for acknowledging my geniality, and for the amusement. Shall we make you the house buffoon of the bar?

pretzelattack , Nov 1, 2018 3:10:54 PM | link
thanks for the analysis. we all see the pattern, but i guess it's still important to debunk the bullshit--it just never seems to stop the predetermined goals. it was widely seen that saddam's alleged wmd's didn't exist, but the invasion went on. now the u.s. wants war with iran. unless russia or china intervenes, what can stop it?
DontBelieveEitherPropaganda , Nov 1, 2018 3:15:48 PM | link
@10 - WJ: Difference is, USA has drones and some 19 yo teen can kill you with his joystick. ;)
I think false flag seems likely, but i also have some doubts about ISIS claiming to be resposible. The Iranian state is also pretty complex, with many different actors and power centers. So it cant be ruled out that those arab seperatists are resposible and that some rouge IRGC faction took action against reason of the state as a whole.
Like B said, the EU should demand evidence. Like with Skripal.. Not trust the Danish NATO proxys.
Nick Baam , Nov 1, 2018 3:33:01 PM | link
craigsummers:

The Dutch were not right about MH17, and neither are the Danes. Almost certainly another anti-Iranian false flag coming -- this on American soil -- w war soon to follow.

https://southfront.org/summing-up-russian-military-briefing-on-mh17-incident-missiles-serial-numbers-fake-videos-and-intercepted-radio-communications/

'The Russian military traced the Buk missile [9M38 missile], which shot down the Malaysian Airlines flight MH17 in eastern Ukraine in 2014, using serial numbers found on missile fragments showcased by an international team of investigators led by the Netherlands.

'Using the serial number of the nozzle cluster 9D13105000 No. 8-30-113 and the engine of the missile 9D131 with the serial number 8869032, the Russian military identified this missile as one produced by the Dolgoprudny plant – a Soviet/Russian designer and mass producer of surface-to-air missiles located in the city of Dolgoprudny, Moscow Oblast.

'The military said that the documentation for the aforementioned missile is still stored at the plant – the missile with the aforementioned engine and nozzle cluster has the manufacturing serial number of 8868720.

'According to the provided documents, the nozzle cluster was installed in the missile on December 24, 1986. The engine was installed to the missile on the same day.'

karlof1 , Nov 1, 2018 3:38:31 PM | link
Outlaw US Empire attacks Iran with new version of Stuxnet virus.

About the only difference between Trump and Hillary I can judge is he's not quite as reckless. Otherwise, their policy goal remains the same: Full Spectrum Dominance by any means necessary. The attack proves yet again the Outlaw US Empire would rather have destabilization and war in the region than peace, still thinking it remains the World's Boss.

Lozion , Nov 1, 2018 4:01:11 PM | link
@22 Nah, better make him the corner spit bowl..
sejomoje , Nov 1, 2018 4:12:36 PM | link
Thanks b, this is Journalism. Poor craigsummers appears to be in shock. It's ok craig.

We're in a really strange place vis a vis "Mossad" in the west. The average person on the street doesn't know whether to idolize them as superhuman kickass kravmaga-inventing Jason Bourne types, or diabolical creeps like Weinstein's "former Mossad" minions. Then Sacha Baron Cohen comes around and makes them funny again. Are they scary? Funny? When they appear in official media, it's usually in a display of mindblowing incompetence or fraud. So you can see how we're confused.

Bart Hansen , Nov 1, 2018 5:01:13 PM | link
25 - "USA has drones and some 19 yo teen can kill you with his joystick."

Yes, from a safe place in some place in the U.S. desert, but I wonder how the pilots of the aircraft refueling the KSA bombing runs to Yemen feel as they finish and do a 180 to return to base. Do they first look to see what their evil has done before heading back?

Kalen , Nov 1, 2018 5:31:34 PM | link
More likely it is Iran conveniently concluded that ISIS was responsible, only to get off the hook of EU countries that harbor terrorists not only anti Iran by anti Russia, so they closed the case not to wreck meek EU attempt to find the way around US sanctions with trade with Iran. Mossad did not like that and hence used another Russia Gate like provocation to stop EU Iran accommodation, this time claiming new Iranian terrorism issue Orwelian style blame victims.
Peter AU 1 , Nov 1, 2018 5:59:37 PM | link
karlof1 27 "About the only difference between Trump and Hillary I can judge is he's not quite as reckless."

I would agree with that, but I also think he will be willing to take big risks to see his plan through. He may well be like Putin's cornered rat if his plans are blocked.

Jen , Nov 1, 2018 6:14:52 PM | link
One question we should be asking is why all of a sudden is Denmark taking a leading role in accusing Iran of supporting terrorism and terrorist cells in Europe. Is Denmark's action as much to pressure Sweden and Finland into joining NATO as it is to pressure the EU into following the US in sanctioning Iran and tearing up the nuclear treaty the EU still adheres to?
Jen , Nov 1, 2018 6:20:00 PM | link
B @ 23, Lozion @ 28:

Craig's ambitions are rather more lofty than what you both have proposed. He aspires to be the President Trump of MoA.

Peter AU 1 , Nov 1, 2018 6:59:40 PM | link
This crap by the Danes is not without precedent. They were in on the US attack against the SAA at Deir Ezzor. US, UK, Australia and Denmark all took part in that attack.
hans , Nov 1, 2018 7:00:12 PM | link
One question we should be asking is why all of a sudden is Denmark taking a leading role

the danes swede and norway,netherlands folks have all been anglo zion borged.
the man leading this charge is a mr samuel son a proud son of a son i am sure he believes what he says i'm sure he has good reason.
wait for future headlines involving norways trillion dollar sovreign wealth fund vanishing just like gadaffi libya or ukraines gold..

country control via epstein lolita express blackmail.
young boys and girls in ritual cctv horror show as a form of soft power persuasion

Ninel , Nov 1, 2018 7:17:39 PM | link
I'm not entirely convinced b. The Iranian government has a long history of assassination attempts. And Denmark is not exactly a war mongering nation so your claims seem a bit shaky. I have never been impressed by analyses of Iran on this blog, as I think both b and many commentators here totally ignorant of the IRI's crimes against its own citizens. I am very knowledgable when it comes to Iran and so incidents like these do not surprise me. Of course I should make clear that it is possible to be against the IRI and western war mongering nations at the same time.
Circe , Nov 1, 2018 7:21:09 PM | link
I just can't stand responding to cs21 hasbara garbage; nothing is more annoying than hasbara. To quote Irish Nobel laureate GB Shaw: never wrestle with pigs, you both get dirty and the pig loves it!

Mossad used the MEK and another terrorist group, Jundallah in Iran when they didn't do the dirty job themselves to assassinate Iranian scientists extra-judicially. Imagine if JFK had done same when Israel was developing its nuclear weapons on the sly?

That's not all, Mossad used these terrorists like they used terrorists in Syria to foment manufactured revolution, specifically, in Iran, the Green Revolution and as for example what was done in Ukraine, terrorist snipers masquerading as basiji fired into the crowd of green protestors and killed a young women who the Western media elevated as the face of the Revolution hoping it would incite anger that would spread exponentially and trigger riots everywhere then civil war like in Syria and Ukraine, but they were very disappointed. This is playbook Mossad/CIA revolution engineering. All constituted criminal acts against sovereign nations, except in Iran their plan fizzled.

Mossad also used false flag against Gadaffi in Libya and years earlier against Mossadegh, the democratically elected leader of Iran that preceded the Shah. The Lavon Affair was a false flag comprised of multiple terrorist attacks that Israel planned and plotted to execute and blame on the Muslim Brotherhood and other Egyptian groups.

Mossad has assassinated what it considered to be terrorists in Europe, Syria, Lebanon, UAE, Jordan and on and on with total impunity. Some of these so-called terrorists were political leaders recent example Arafat, and attempted murder of Meschal, at least one or more were false flag to trigger civil war, i.e. in Lebanon, and some were what South African Apartheid victims would consider resistance and freedom fighters.

Israel also attacked the USSLiberty and no doubt had a hand in U.S. military sabotage in Lebanon not to mention murdering American journalists and activists.

ALL this was done with impunity. So in regards to these foiled terrorist attacks I have no doubt Mossad is up to no good and Israel has everything to gain in this dirty business they have executed many times before.

The truth lies in who benefits most and who has exhibited the most egregious pattern of behaviour. ISRAEL.

AriusArmenian , Nov 1, 2018 7:29:41 PM | link
Yes, it certainly smells like a false flag operation.
The CIA, MI6, and Mossad have been doing such operations in Europe since the end of WW2.
No surprise.
Ninel , Nov 1, 2018 7:30:56 PM | link
For those interested in the IRI, especially those uncritical, naive supporters, here is some light reading:


https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/1988_executions_of_Iranian_political_prisoners

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Evin_Prison

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chain_murders_of_Iran

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Iranian_labor_law

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Syndicate_of_Workers_of_Tehran_and_Suburbs_Bus_Company

Circe , Nov 1, 2018 8:16:27 PM | link
IRAN must be a hasbara trigger word. The Zionist web army recruits have arrived. Everything you pulled out of wiki I can double, triple, quadruple for Isra-hell. For starters, let's talk about Prison facility 1391 - torture, murder, perpetual isolation--dark ages stuff.

Let's talk about the kidnapping, imprisonment, even torture of children. Perhaps, the worst human rights record against children. 8000 Palestinian children arrested since 2000.

What about the two-tier justice system in Isra-hell?

Shall we discuss the murder of activists, journalists and protestors? What about political prisoners in Isra-hell? What about administrative detention. Detention without trial.

This is the tip of the iceberg regarding Isra-hell's human rights abuses. Don't get me started.

ben , Nov 1, 2018 8:34:13 PM | link
cs @ 21 said;"With all of that said, this is a well thought out attempt to blame the US."

For your perusal cs. Gee, I can't imagine why anyone would be suspicious of the U$A's motives
https://truthout.org/video/overthrow-100-years-of-us-meddling-and-regime-change-from-iran-to-nicaragua-to-hawaii-to-cuba/

craigsummers , Nov 1, 2018 9:27:36 PM | link
b @23
"......Thanks for acknowledging my geniality, and for the amusement. Shall we make you the house buffoon of the bar?......"

What ever suits you. I just appreciate you not deleting my account!

Thanks.

bokin , Nov 1, 2018 11:41:15 PM | link

As we approach the end of the year the big questions facing Europe are:

(1) Which country will win the prize for the most decapitations or slit throats? France or Germany?

With dozens of horrific crimes recently these two competitors are running neck and neck, however with Macron's France averaging close to one slit throat per day, France is probably going to win this contest

Which leaves us with the big question Germans are asking

(2) Which city will earn the distinction of being 2018's Rape Capital of Germany?

For a long time it seemed that the winner would surely be Berlin, but then Freiburg lurched into the lead a few weeks ago.

And now, with a 15-year-old being gang-raped by Afghan asylum seekers, Munich is hustling to take the title.

This crime and subsequent arrests were kept out of the media for a few weeks

-- coincidentally, until just after the recent local elections in Bavaria

The article below from Bild, also translated into English, contains additional details:

Suspects in Custody: Six Men Allegedly Raped Girl (15)

October 30, 2018

Munich -- The Munich police have arrested five Afghan refugees; according to Bayerischer Rundfunk another alleged perpetrator is on the run.

The allegation: They reportedly raped a 15-year-old girl.

The Munich public prosecutor confirmed to BILD upon request that there is an investigation involving a sexual assault and several people have been arrested. The spokesman did not want to comment further.

The case: The girl, who is being psychologically cared for, according to BILD's information, had filed charges against her "partner" at the end of September. The asylum seeker is said to have verbally threatened her and thereby forced her to have intercourse.

Also, he forced her to have intercourse with several his friends. She was so intimidated that she had to endure being abused by them all for several days. Each case is to be handled individually. Physical violence had played no role in the incidents.

In addition to the alleged victim's partner, four other refugees (all between 20 and 25 years old) were arrested. The alleged perpetrators are registered asylum seekers.

In the meantime, warrants have been issued against them on suspicion of rape. They are in custody.

The assaults are said to have occurred at the end of September. The first arrests were made four weeks ago.

Some interrogations remain to be conducted to substantiate the allegations made by the alleged victim, which is one explanation for why the authorities have not made the case public.

Some of the detainees admitted that they had intercourse with the minor, but said that it had taken place by mutual agreement."

Got that?

According to Bild, "Physical violence played no role in the incidents"

snedly arkus , Nov 2, 2018 12:43:12 AM | link
First their is money laundering charges by the US against Denmark's largest bank and now we have Denmark joining the Trump stomp on Iran project. Could it be the US cut a deal with Denmark to limit their investigations and penalties into this bank and maybe others, or possible involvement of Danish government officials, and the Dane's jumped at the chance to limit the damage to the country and it's economy and keep sanction happy Trump from sanctioning them into the poor house.
Steve , Nov 2, 2018 4:49:42 AM | link
Denmark, like Sweden and Norway are the biggest enablers of USA's imperial efforts more than any other nations in the whole world. I think it is only Russia which gets that fact. Nobel prizes are nothing but tooks of the US empire
james , Nov 2, 2018 4:54:55 AM | link
42 ben, ditto... cs has never heard of the cia and the past countless years of there horrors... in fact as far as cs is concerned, they never had any role to play in ghouta 2011 and afterwards either...cs thinks the letters stand for charity international association...usaid is another benevolent org as far as cs is concerned... if cs was ever to read john perkins 'confessions of an economic hit man' he would fall out of his chair and have his world turned upside down.... cs really needs to hang over at pat langs site where some of his love and ignorance of the usa's covert history has a place of acceptance.. it ain't here..
Laguerre , Nov 2, 2018 6:06:55 AM | link
44 bokin. German far-right propaganda reaches MoA.
Laguerre , Nov 2, 2018 7:24:45 AM | link
"It is likely that the false flag operations in Europe, like the ones in Belgium and Denmark, are run by the CIA with the Mossad only in an auxiliary role."

Very difficult to distinguish the two. Israel declared its campaign to internally destabilise Iran last spring (evidently having quailed at the risks of the open military attack), the US has been fruitlessly attempting the same for forty years. I suppose the new Israeli campaign has revived US efforts.

By the way, I was interested by Alastair Crooke's recent remark that Israeli air superiority has been broken by the S300s. Crooke's views are to take seriously.

https://www.rt.com/shows/rt-interview/442703-lavelle-crooke-middle-east/

That could be very grave for Israel, if so, and a context for what's happening.

Mina , Nov 2, 2018 7:51:49 AM | link
No one has picked up on this ?
https://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/middle-east/jamal-khashoggi-latest-news-saudi-arabia-turkey-embassy-washington-dc-a8601961.html
Did Khalid bin Salman return because might be accused of being part of the plot? There was a phonecall to the US apparently right after the killing.
https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/middleeast/syria/11120629/Saudi-prince-and-Emirates-first-female-fighter-pilot-take-part-in-Syria-air-strikes.html
It is getting closer to Kushner.
https://www.nytimes.com/2018/11/01/world/middleeast/with-saudi-prince-holding-on-to-power-us-seen-standing-by-him.html
"Two people close to the Saudi royal court said Mr. Kushner and Prince Mohammed communicate often, including by text message, and multiple times since Mr. Khashoggi's disappearance. A White House spokesman declined to comment about those communications."

The guy is said to have participated in some coalition attacks in Yemen and Syria
https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/middleeast/syria/11120629/Saudi-prince-and-Emirates-first-female-fighter-pilot-take-part-in-Syria-air-strikes.html
(I can't find anymore the recent paper where Yemen was mentioned).
Is this the new bigger than screen playstation for Saudi psychopaths? What about the enquiry into the non-identified plane that bombed civilians during an exchange of prisoners in northern Syria? Could it be a Saudi plane? How many of them have been used in Syria and Yemen?

Bandit , Nov 2, 2018 8:02:39 AM | link
Steve, how could you overlook the all time top lap dog: the UK? The UK would be first on most people's list of sycophant enablers of US terrorism, regime change, and false flag operations. Sometimes Macron tries to run ahead of the pack, but gets slapped back by Trump, but when all is said and done, the whole NATO crew are self-serving idiots and assholes.
mali , Nov 2, 2018 8:13:19 AM | link
Denmark, like Sweden and Norway are the biggest enablers of USA's imperial efforts more than any other nations in the whole world. I think it is only Russia which gets that fact. Nobel prizes are nothing but tooks of the US empire

Posted by: Steve | Nov 2, 2018 4:49:42 AM | 46
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Well said!

I totally agree with you after saw the ghastly bully behaviour of Denmark on 2009 United Nations Climate Change Conference, who was actively trying to force down the throat of BRICS (EPS. China & India) and developing countries the schemes that US & Co wanted: 1): to strangle the development chance of third world and 2). to escape the accountability/ownership of the big messy pollution the Western countries has been emitted into the air and the world for centuries.

Another aggressive Dane who was in full swing to propagate the Empire's interests/schemes is Anders Fogh Rasmussen, ex-NATO Secretary General, who was so belligerent that I sometimes question how the peace-love Denmark can produce such an aggressive person......

Rhisiart Gwilym , Nov 2, 2018 8:43:10 AM | link
b, is there any way to highlight a 'Craig Summers' post at the top, so we can skip over his/her/their lying rubbish unread. Bad enough having to wade through the effusions of the sprinkling of religious loonies who seem to be posting now, without wasting time on this bellingcrap-style hasbarollocks.
Jormaaja , Nov 2, 2018 8:48:51 AM | link
Is Denmark going to "stand up to Turkey" also?

"In the beginning of 2017 the Danish Security Service PET had received information about planned political murder of individuals in Denmark who oppose the Turkish government. The PET acted on the information and put the would be targets in safety. This is revealed by Swedish Radio Ekot.
https://sverigesradio.se/sida/artikel.aspx?programid=83&artikel=6975341

And is Denmark going to stop doing this:"Denmark's foreign minister has for the first time acknowledged that the government allowed the sale of surveillance technology to authoritarian Arab governments, including Saudi Arabia and the UAE." "Mass surveillance during and after the Arab Spring was used to facilitate the mass incarceration of dissidents, leading to the eventual crushing of popular movements, the report alleged."

https://www.alaraby.co.uk/english/news/2017/8/21/danish-fm-admits-selling-mass-surveillance-technology-to-saudi-arabia

And what are the Syro-Ahwazian pro-FSA dudes up to in Denmark:"One battalion of the rebel Free Syrian Army is called the "Ahwaz Brigade", although the group says there are no foreign fighters in its ranks.

"We have relations with different factions of the (Syrian) rebels," said Habib Nabgan, the former head of a coalition of Ahwazi parties whose armed wing carried out last week's pipeline attack.
"They need information, which we give them, and we need some of their expertise, so there is cooperation and that is developing," he told Reuters via telephone from Denmark, where he took refuge in 2006."
https://uk.reuters.com/article/us-iran-arabs-insight-idUKBRE97E0O620130815


Ahwazians in Syria:"Before the Syrian uprising, the Ahwazi community in Damascus was living in fear, but is now fully behind the revolutionary struggle.There have been frequent demonstrations in Syria by Ahwazi Arabs flying the opposition flag alongside their own."

https://www.alahwaz.info/en/?p=4642

EtTuBrute , Nov 2, 2018 9:26:51 AM | link
Interesting, the first time i heard of this story my instinct immediately was, why on earth would Iran conduct such risky and rather pointless operations where the downside would greatly outweigh any benefit if they were caught?? Add to that, no one was harmed, they got "caught".. and Mossad involved.. seems pretty clear to anyone who actually understands what's going on in the world.. but there aren't many of us who actually think when we read the news.. thanks again MR B for another insightful piece on analysis :)
Circe , Nov 2, 2018 10:24:00 AM | link
@43

Why? Because you think your Zionist propaganda claptrap is actually convincing and working to bring down surviving bastions of independent thought? It's laughable how hasbara-scripted you read; delivering superficially well-constructed neoliberal brainwash, whitewash material. Your disingenuous ilk courting the Left with liberal goodies, in one hand while unleashing double-standard neoconservative righteous destruction with the other is the main reason we now suffer Trump's fascist right-wing version of same. People protest vote neoliberalism and end up in the arms of the hard right-wing version. It's a no choice choice; an affront to real democracy. You play the desperation of the Left against the Right and then deliver it into the same neoconstruct. You're two sides of the same cult and neither can stand independent thought. After I read your Zionist-contrived claptrap, I feel like my mind has been abused and my time wasted. Once you're wise to the trap, you never go back to falling for whichever charismatic puppet is going to save us from the other side.

The goal becomes helping others break free of the vicious, cyclical no-choice duopoly to viably challenge and destroy it for good! You pretend at righeousness, but you're on the side of status quo darkness.

Circe , Nov 2, 2018 10:39:58 AM | link
Uh, just one more point, I still believe in GW Shaw's wisdom that you shouldn't wrestle with ignorance, ie pigs, but I just intended @56 as a Reader Beware CS for anyone who's out there only reading.
Peter AU 1 , Nov 2, 2018 11:31:43 AM | link
Laguerre 49

Perhaps of more importance was Crooke's remark on US debt. He said in August the cost of servicing the debt, for the first time, exceeded tax revenue. On top of that, the US must sell over a trillion of new debt each year for the next three years.

Laguerre , Nov 2, 2018 12:06:57 PM | link
Posted by: Peter AU 1 | Nov 2, 2018 11:31:43 AM | 58

Yes I too thought that was interesting. But Israel's problem is more fatal, in a permanent sense. Air superiority once lost won't be recovered, but the US could, if it wanted to, live more within its means.

Yul , Nov 2, 2018 12:13:06 PM | link
@b

Do you remember the Green revolution of 2009 that went pfttttt?
Well here is an edifying article wrt the CIA :

https://www.yahoo.com/news/cias-communications-suffered-catastrophic-compromise-started-iran-090018710.html?.tsrc=fauxdal

As usual, some former official has to include : Israeli intelligence tipped off the CIA that Iran had likely identified some of its assets, said the same former official.

james , Nov 2, 2018 12:24:36 PM | link
thanks b wise words as usual thanks for soft shoe shuffle i will of course let you know when you cross the antisemenetic line.
by the way
i love you
karlof1 , Nov 2, 2018 1:11:54 PM | link
58&59--

Regarding US Debt as a problem, Bolton sees it as a threat to national security:

"Bolton, speaking Wednesday at an event hosted by the Alexander Hamilton Society in Washington, said he expects U.S. defense spending "to flatten out" in the near term. He said he didn't anticipate major cuts to entitlements such as Medicare and Social Security.

""It is a fact that when your national debt gets to the level ours is, that it constitutes an economic threat to the society," Bolton said. "And that kind of threat ultimately has a national security consequence for it.""

Of course, he wants to cut support for citizens instead of support for the Deep State and its massively corrupt MIC. The massive cut in revenues caused by Trump's giveaways to corporations and the 1% were designed to exacerbate the problem and create an artificial crisis in discretionary spending. Most from all sides of the political spectrum can see this for what it is and are already pushing back, which will be the fundamental reason Trump won't get a 2nd term--his policies are proving to be a fiscal nightmare.

David Hollander , Nov 2, 2018 1:21:29 PM | link
The evidence provided by the author that the CIA was the primary driving agent in these incidents is not compelling. In fact, the US government under Obama supported the JCPOA against the wishes of the Netanyahu government. Thus the statement that "US interests" are necessarily defined by sanctions against Iran seems to me to be unfounded. Had the author replaced "US interests" with "Trump administration policies", which are clearly much more aligned with the interests of the Likud and Netanyahu the statement might be more supportable.
Laguerre , Nov 2, 2018 1:22:55 PM | link
re Yul

"Do you remember the Green revolution of 2009 that went pfttttt?"

Very interesting article, but the Green Revolution didn't go pfft because of that. 2009 failed because the middle class aren't very good at revolutions. They aren't the majority, and they didn't have popular support.

[Nov 02, 2018] 'We have met the enemy and he is us' Who's really 'undermining' US democracy asks Stephen Cohen

Notable quotes:
"... War with Russia? From Putin and Ukraine To Trump and Russiagate ..."
"... undermine American democracy ..."
"... are engaging in an elaborate campaign of 'information warfare' to interfere with the American midterm elections ..."
"... public evidence ..."
"... arsenal of disruption capabilities... to sow havoc on election day ..."
"... Kremlin propaganda ..."
"... portraying Russian and Syrian government forces favorably as they battled 'terrorists' in what US officials for years have portrayed as a legitimate uprising against the authoritarian government of President Bashar al-Assad. ..."
"... Kremlin propaganda ..."
"... what US officials for years have ..."
"... undermining of American democracy ..."
"... We have met the enemy and he is us ..."
"... This article was originally published by The Nation . ..."
Nov 02, 2018 | www.rt.com

Allegations that Russia is still "attacking" US elections, now again in November, could delegitimize our democratic institutions. Summarizing one of the themes in his new book, ' War with Russia? From Putin and Ukraine To Trump and Russiagate ,' Stephen F. Cohen argues that Russiagate allegations of Kremlin attempts to " undermine American democracy " may themselves erode confidence in those institutions.

Ever since Russiagate allegations began to appear more than two years ago, their core narrative has revolved around purported Kremlin attempts to " interfere " in the 2016 US presidential election on behalf of then-candidate Donald Trump. In recent months, a number of leading American media outlets have taken that argument even further, suggesting that Putin's Kremlin actually put Trump in the White House and now is similarly trying to affect the November 6 midterm elections, particularly House contests, on behalf of Trump and the Republican Party. According to a page-one New York Times "report," for example, Putin's agents " are engaging in an elaborate campaign of 'information warfare' to interfere with the American midterm elections ."

Despite well-documented articles by Gareth Porter and Aaron Mate effectively dismantling these allegations about 2016 and 2018, the mainstream media continues to promote them. The occasionally acknowledged lack of " public evidence " is sometimes cited as itself evidence of a deep Russian conspiracy, of the Kremlin's " arsenal of disruption capabilities... to sow havoc on election day ." (See the examples cited by Alan MacLeod .)

Lost in these reckless allegations is the long-term damage they may themselves do to American democracy. Consider the following possibilities:

Even though still unproven, charges that the Kremlin put Trump in the White House have cast a large shadow of illegitimacy over his presidency and thus over the institution of the presidency itself. This is unlikely to end entirely with Trump. If the Kremlin had the power to affect the outcome of one presidential election, why not another one, whether won by a Republican or a Democrat? The 2016 presidential election was the first time such an allegation became widespread in American political history, but it may not be the last.

Now the same shadow looms over the November 6 elections and thus over the next Congress. If so, in barely two years, the legitimacy of two fundamental institutions of American representative democracy will have been challenged, also for the first time in history.

And if US elections are really so vulnerable to Russian " meddling ," what does this say about faith in American elections more generally? How many losing candidates on November 6 will resist blaming the Kremlin? Two years after the last presidential election, Hillary Clinton and her adamant supporters still have not been able to do so.

We know from critical reporting and from recent opinion surveys that the origins and continuing fixation on the Russiagate scandal since 2016 have been primarily a product of US political-intelligence-media elites. It did not spring from the American people – from voters themselves. Thus a Gallup poll recently showed that 58 percent of those surveyed wanted improved relations with Russia. And other surveys have shown that Russiagate is scarcely an issue at all for likely voters on November 6. Nonetheless, it remains a front-page issue for US elites.

Indeed, Russiagate has revealed the low esteem that many US political-media elites have for American voters – for their ability to make discerning, rational electoral decisions, which is the bedrock assumption of representative democracy. It is worth noting that this disdain for rank-and-file citizens echoes a longstanding attitude of the Russian political intelligentsia, as recently expressed in the argument by a prominent Moscow policy intellectual that Russian authoritarianism springs not from the nation's elites but from the "genetic code" of its people .

US elites seem to have a similar skepticism about – or contempt for – American voters' capacity to make discerning electoral choices. Presumably this is a factor behind the current proliferation of programs – official, corporate, and private – to introduce elements of censorship in the nation's " media space " in order to filter out " Kremlin propaganda ." Here, it also seems, elites will decide what constitutes such " propaganda ."

The Washington Post recently gave such an example : " portraying Russian and Syrian government forces favorably as they battled 'terrorists' in what US officials for years have portrayed as a legitimate uprising against the authoritarian government of President Bashar al-Assad. " That is, thinking that the forces of Putin and Assad were fighting terrorists, even if closer to the truth, is " Kremlin propaganda " because it is at variance with " what US officials for years have " been saying. This was the guiding principle of Soviet censorship as well.

If the American electoral process, presidency, legislature, and voter cannot be fully trusted, what is left of American democracy? Admittedly, this is still only a trend, a foreboding, but one with no end in sight. If it portends the " undermining of American democracy ," our elites will blame the Kremlin. But they best recall the discovery of Walt Kelly's legendary cartoon figure Pogo: " We have met the enemy and he is us ."

Stephen F. Cohen is a professor emeritus of Russian studies and politics at New York University and Princeton University and a contributing editor of The Nation.

This article was originally published by The Nation .

Read more US invents new 'meddling' charges to play 'Russia card' ahead of midterms - Moscow FM official US Congress has no Russian policy other than sanctions' – Stephen Cohen Suspicious packages could be 'Russian operation,' says MSNBC host

[Nov 02, 2018] The US is using every tool to destabilize russia and change the goverment into Yeltsin style comprador elite

Nov 02, 2018 | www.wsws.org

Kalen Blaine8 months ago

Hitler and Napoleon learned that it is impossible to conquer Russia size of continent of militarily impossible weather with now a network of underground fortifications, tunnels that cannot be nuked.

There is no conquering Russia with measly million soldiers west could at best deploy for their sure deaths. Hence no western strategist plan for that and so the idea of Russia responding to conventional attack with nuke was a propaganda aim to end the conversation about that absurd, no sides really considers, but is used to spread fear.

US may attack Russia with nukes but no strategic goal would be achieved by that while retaliation would have been devastating.

Even conventional attack on Russia is absurd. Poland 50k 5k offensive capability, All Baltic states 10k, Slovakia 5k, Hungary 9k facing what?

Russian allies: Donbas rebels 40k war hardened rebel soldiers would be hard to beat; Belarus 250k highly trained soldiers, fully integrated Air, Space, Ground and electronic warfare with all newest Russian toys, while entire army of 2 millions. Russia 3-5 million military can call at least 10 millions will maintain air and space superiority over their territory , digged in while invaders are exposed.

There is will be no invasion of Russia only intimidation of the elites to submit to US political and economic dictates. Also there is no conquering China as well. Not possible.

The only nuke war can occur when global elite will be losing grip on power and going down in flames in socialist revolution and only to take entire humanity with them to hell.

Blaine OL8 months ago
If faced with an existential conventional attack, Russian doctrine calls for nuclear response. It would be silly to think they'd limit it to low yield missiles in staging areas in E Europe. They WILL hit continental US and the Pentagon whizkids know this.

The US is using every tool to destabilize them for a change of government, and all the provocations to now are not on a scale of all out war. It does serve to build a compelling narrative that allows no discussion when laws are finally passed limiting freedom of information and association.

The US citizen is the real target here.

OL Blaine8 months ago
I see it as the real target being all the natural resources and cheap but skilled labor in the former USSR (on top of bringing down a competitor), and the US population just stading in the way because they're not brainwashed enough for the generals taste.
The capitalist economies can't work in autarchy, they need to get more markets, they need to bring down competitors. or they fall themselves, If you place the control of the population at the top of their priorities, how do you explain the invasion of Afghanistan, Iraq etc ? How do you explain the mamoth military budget ? is it just in case a whole US city turns communist and they need to reduce it to ashes ?
Blaine OL8 months ago
First they would have to make sure the rest of the country didn't learn about the one that went communist. Then instead of reducing it to ashes they would use the association trees they have built tracking internet and social media to identify and round up the ringleaders. Rest of the country might never even know what had happened between partial blackouts and misinformation.

Don't get me wrong, the US would love to replace partial state control of key Russian industries with Western banking interests and have a free hand with the natural resources. This is certainly the long term plan. But...in the near term they have to reestablish control of the narrative.

The military budget is wealth transfer to folks who enjoy and agitate for any war. Afghanistan was about military contracts, hydrocarbons and opium, the Taliban had to go. Iraq (and Syria) are a problem for Israel - problem solved. Libya was setting up an alternative banking system and possessed attractive gold reserves.

OL Blaine8 months ago
Afghanistan was a good occasion for military contracts, but hydrocarbons of the whole region, (especially the project for a pipeline through the caspian sea that Russia and Iran opposed), were a bigger reason.

Why israel so important to the US ? because the resources of the whole region, and because they could threaten the suez canal.

etc

[Nov 02, 2018] I discovered in Baghdad a group of British scientific technicians who had been sent by the UK Ministry of Defense to build outlawed biological weapons at Salman Pak. These included deadly anthrax and Q-fever but only for use against Iran if a second Iraq-Iran War erupted.

Nov 02, 2018 | www.wsws.org

Southern8 months ago

Here's a related article that's interesting.
Saddam Hussein had no nuclear weapons, contrary to US and British claims. I discovered in Baghdad a group of British scientific technicians who had been sent by the UK Ministry of Defense to build outlawed biological weapons at Salman Pak. These included deadly anthrax and Q-fever – but only for use against Iran if a second Iraq-Iran War erupted.
[Eric Margolis February 17, 2018]

[Nov 02, 2018] The Russian meddling fraud Weapons of mass destruction revisited by Andre Damon and Joseph Kishore

20 February 2018
Notable quotes:
"... World Socialist Web Site ..."
"... Washington Post columnist Richard Cohen, who rushed off a column before he could have examined Powell's allegations, declared, "The evidence he presented to the United Nations -- some of it circumstantial, some of it absolutely bone-chilling in its detail -- had to prove to anyone that Iraq not only hasn't accounted for its weapons of mass destruction but without a doubt still retains them. Only a fool -- or possibly a Frenchman -- could conclude otherwise." ..."
"... New York Times ..."
"... While the present campaign over Russian "meddling" has much in common with the claims about "weapons of mass destruction," the implications are far more ominous. The "war on terror" is exhausted, in part because the US is allied in Syria and elsewhere with the Islamic fundamentalist organizations it was purportedly fighting. ..."
"... The Mueller indictment is intended to provide an appropriate "narrative" for military aggression motivated by different aims. At the same time, it serves as a ready-made pretext for censorship and domestic repression that goes far beyond the extraordinary measures adopted under the framework of the "war on terror." Russia, the American people are supposed to believe, uses domestic social opposition to weaken the United States, rendering political dissent effectively treasonous. ..."
"... Even more extreme measures are being planned and implemented, motivated by the basic principle that the greater the lie, the more aggressive the methods required to enforce it. The target of the repressive measures is not Russia, but the American working class. The ruling elite is well aware that as it plots war abroad, it stands upon a social powder keg at home. ..."
Nov 02, 2018 | www.wsws.org

Fifteen years ago, on February 5, 2003, against the backdrop of worldwide mass demonstrations in opposition to the impending invasion of Iraq, then-US Secretary of State Colin Powell argued before the United Nations that the government of Saddam Hussein was rapidly stockpiling "weapons of mass destruction," which Iraq, together with Al Qaeda, was planning to use against the United States.

In what was the climax of the Bush administration's campaign to justify war, Powell held up a model vial of anthrax, showed aerial photographs and presented detailed slides purporting to show the layout of Iraq's "mobile production facilities."

There was only one problem with Powell's presentation: it was a lie from beginning to end.

The World Socialist Web Site , in an editorial board statement published the next day, declared the brief for war "the latest act in a diplomatic charade laced with cynicism and deceit." War against Iraq, the WSWS wrote, was not about "weapons of mass destruction." Rather, "it is a war of colonial conquest, driven by a series of economic and geo-political aims that center on the seizure of Iraq's oil resources and the assertion of US global hegemony."

The response of the American media, and particularly its liberal wing, was very different. Powell's litany of lies was presented as the gospel truth, an unanswerable indictment of the Iraqi government.

Washington Post columnist Richard Cohen, who rushed off a column before he could have examined Powell's allegations, declared, "The evidence he presented to the United Nations -- some of it circumstantial, some of it absolutely bone-chilling in its detail -- had to prove to anyone that Iraq not only hasn't accounted for its weapons of mass destruction but without a doubt still retains them. Only a fool -- or possibly a Frenchman -- could conclude otherwise."

The editorial board of the New York Times -- whose reporter Judith Miller was at the center of the Bush administration's campaign of lies -- declared one week later that there "is ample evidence that Iraq has produced highly toxic VX nerve gas and anthrax and has the capacity to produce a lot more. It has concealed these materials, lied about them, and more recently failed to account for them to the current inspectors."

Subsequent developments would prove who was lying. The Bush administration and its media accomplices conspired to drag the US into a war that led to the deaths of more than one million people -- a colossal crime for which no one has yet been held accountable.

Fifteen years later, the script has been pulled from the closet and dusted off. This time, instead of "weapons of mass destruction," it is "Russian meddling in the US elections." Once again, assertions by US intelligence agencies and operatives are treated as fact. Once again, the media is braying for war. Once again, the cynicism and hypocrisy of the American government -- which intervenes in the domestic politics of every state on the planet and has been relentlessly expanding its operations in Eastern Europe -- are ignored.

The argument presented by the American media is that the alleged existence of a fly-by-night operation, employing a few hundred people, with a budget amounting to a minuscule fraction of total election spending in the US, constitutes a "a virtual war against the United States through 21st-century tools of disinformation and propaganda" ( New York Times ).

In the countless articles and media commentary along this vein, nowhere can one find a serious analysis of the Mueller indictment of the Russians itself, let alone an examination of the real motivations behind the US campaign against Russia. The fact that the indictment does not even involve the Russian government or state officials is treated as a nonissue.

While the present campaign over Russian "meddling" has much in common with the claims about "weapons of mass destruction," the implications are far more ominous. The "war on terror" is exhausted, in part because the US is allied in Syria and elsewhere with the Islamic fundamentalist organizations it was purportedly fighting.

More fundamentally, the quarter-century of invasions and occupations that followed the dissolution of the Soviet Union is rapidly developing into a conflict between major nuclear-armed powers. The effort of the American ruling class to offset its economic decline using military force is leading mankind to the brink of another world war. As the National Defense Strategy, published less than a month before the release of the indictments, declared, "Inter-state strategic competition, not terrorism, is now the primary concern in US national security."

Russia is seen by dominant sections of the military-intelligence apparatus as a principal obstacle to US efforts to control the Middle East and to take on China -- and it is this that has been at the center of the conflict between the Democratic Party and the Trump administration.

There have already been a series of clashes in recent weeks between the world's two largest nuclear-armed powers. On February 3, a Russian close-air support fighter was shot down by al-Nusra Front fighters, which are indirectly allied with the United States in its proxy war against the government of Bashar Al-Assad. Then, on February 7 and 8, Russian soldiers were killed in US air and artillery barrages in Deir Ezzor, in what survivors called a "massacre." Both the US and Russian governments have sought to downplay the scale of the clash, but some sources have reported the number killed to be in the hundreds.

Even as US and Russian forces clashed in Syria, representatives of the Kremlin and the Pentagon sparred at the Munich security conference this weekend over the deployment and development of nuclear weapons. While accusing Russia of violating the Intermediate Range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty, Washington this month issued a nuclear posture review envisioning a massive expansion of the deployment of battlefield nuclear weapons.

The Mueller indictment is intended to provide an appropriate "narrative" for military aggression motivated by different aims. At the same time, it serves as a ready-made pretext for censorship and domestic repression that goes far beyond the extraordinary measures adopted under the framework of the "war on terror." Russia, the American people are supposed to believe, uses domestic social opposition to weaken the United States, rendering political dissent effectively treasonous.

Already, this campaign has led the major US technology firms to implement far-reaching measures to censor political speech on the Internet. Google is manipulating its search results and Facebook is manipulating its news feeds, while seeking to turn the social media platform it has developed into an instrument of corporate-state surveillance.

Even more extreme measures are being planned and implemented, motivated by the basic principle that the greater the lie, the more aggressive the methods required to enforce it. The target of the repressive measures is not Russia, but the American working class. The ruling elite is well aware that as it plots war abroad, it stands upon a social powder keg at home.

The working class must draw the necessary conclusions from its past experiences. In 2003, the Democratic Party supported the Bush administration's invasion of Iraq and provided it with the necessary political cover. Now, the Democrats, along with their appendages among the organizations of the upper-middle class, are at the forefront of the campaign for war, employing neo-McCarthyite tactics to criminalize opposition while seeking to subordinate all popular opposition to the Trump administration to its right-wing and militarist agenda.

The urgent task is to mobilize the working class, in the United States and internationally, against the entire apparatus of the capitalist ruling elite. The fight against war and dictatorship is at the same time the fight against inequality and exploitation, for the overthrow of capitalism and the establishment of a global socialist society.

Andre Damon and Joseph Kishore

[Nov 02, 2018] Moscow Shocked by French Cabinet Spokesman's Remarks Regarding RT

This is a typical projection. France is a member of "dirty four". Macron government is a typical neoliberal cabinet, not that different from Merkel government. As such it is controlled by the USA.
Nov 02, 2018 | sputniknews.com

"Honestly, to say that we were surprised or upset is to say nothing. I think this condition could be better described as 'shock' when we heard the spokesman for the French government, Mr. Griveaux, just recently said the following. I quote: there are two media outlets that I refuse to see in the press room of the Elysee Palace, they are RT and Sputnik because I do not consider them to be media, they are not journalists, they are engaged in propaganda," Zakharova said at a weekly news briefing.

According to Zakharova, such an approach is the result of "the unwillingness of the French authorities to hear alternative sources of information."

Last month, two French government's think tanks issued a report, which recommended the country's authorities to abstain from accrediting journalists of the RT broadcaster and the Sputnik news agency.

Last year, RT reporters were denied entry to the headquarters of then-French presidential candidate Macron twice in April, and in May, a Sputnik reporter was not allowed to enter the square in front of Paris' Louvre museum where Macron and his supporters were celebrating the victory in the presidential run-off. After Macron became French president, he accused RT and Sputnik of "spreading false information and slander."

READ MORE: US Homeland Security Recommends Public to 'Be Aware' of RT, Sputnik

The situation around RT and Sputnik in France is not unique for the European Union: in 2016, the European Parliament adopted a resolution claiming that Russia was waging information warfare and singled out RT and Sputnik. Russian President Vladimir Putin said the resolution proved that Western democracy was failing, but expressed hope that common sense would prevail and Russian media outlets would be able to work abroad without restrictions.

[Nov 02, 2018] MUST WATCH Shocking Video by Comedian Bill Maher - Russia Delusion Still Raging Among US Liberals

Nov 02, 2018 | russia-insider.com

MUST WATCH: Shocking Video by Comedian Bill Maher - Russia Delusion Still Raging Among US Liberals Richard Brandt 10 min ago | 600 words 10 131 RussiaHoax Bill Maher outdid himself recently with this video, but in doing so, he inadvertently showed how out of touch the Jewish Hollywood liberal elites like Maher are with most of the country, and even more so with the rest of the world.

Take the 5 minutes to watch the video, it is an eye-opener. Bullet points follow below:

https://www.youtube.com/embed/QhJIt4uv9x4

Somehow, Maher managed to pack the following into his monologue:

[Oct 31, 2018] British must have hours of footage on Skripals that they have chosen not to reveal. And as the article concludes, the only logical reason for that is that it does not support the official narrative, since one has obviously been decided upon and vigorously defended.

Oct 31, 2018 | thenewkremlinstooge.wordpress.com

et Al October 30, 2018 at 3:21 am

Sic Semper Tyrannis: "LOOPS OF LIES RE 'SIGINT'" by David Habakkuk
https://turcopolier.typepad.com/sic_semper_tyrannis/2018/10/loops-of-lies-re-sigint-by-david-habakkuk.html

LOOPS OF LIES RE 'SIGINT':

GIANNANGELLI'S CLAIMS, IN THE LIGHT OF

HIS EARLIER REPORTS ON GHOUTA, SKRIPALS.
####

Plenty of good stuff at the link including what we have read before.

The article leads me to this question: If whomever can fabricate Syrian Army messages, isn't there one small problem with it? I.e. The Brits may be hoovering up SIGNIT from Mount Troodos in Cyprus, but unless the radio signals are highly directional (and even then they emanate outwards), other nations are also recording these signals, such as Russia, which we never hear about.

Therefore, the Brits/8200 whomever must assume that the Russians have copies and would know if the former are putting up the bs and can call it out behind closed doors at the UN to other nations. So what's the point? Simply for building media outrage and DO SOMETHING! momentum, hoping to act first before it can be scotched? That's what used to happen in the past

Mark Chapman October 30, 2018 at 11:20 am
That's a really good piece, with loads of interesting information. What jumped out for me, though was what amounts to a professional acknowledgement of something that was introduced by commenters early on in the Skripal affair – the almost complete absence of CCTV footage of their movements and those of people close to them. As both sources point out, England is lousy with CCTV, you can barely move without being picked up on multiple cameras. Therefore the British must have hours of footage that they have chosen not to reveal. And as the article concludes, the only logical reason for that is that it does not support the official narrative, since one has obviously been decided upon and vigorously defended.

As an aside, it is tragic that intelligence is manipulated the way it is to present a desired conclusion. Because intelligence is supposed to be something like the irrefutable clue, the piece that doesn't fit, in detective stories. It is supposed to provide that epiphanous moment when you know what has transpired beyond any reasonable doubt. Every time that moment is discovered to have been brought about by fabrication and deceit so as to push an incorrect conclusion to the forefront, trust in the method diminishes. Consequently, the harder governments push this or that piece of evidence as the conclusive piece of proof which cannot be denied, the more likely it is to have been manufactured rather than discovered.

[Oct 30, 2018] Lightening Skies The Case for Optimism by Justin Raimondo

Oct 29, 2018 | original.antiwar.com

Why American nationalism is different

[Oct 28, 2018] Russia tried to have resolution passed at the UN in favour of the INF Treaty. It was blocked by Washington's EU lickspittles including Germany.

Oct 28, 2018 | thenewkremlinstooge.wordpress.com

kirill October 27, 2018 at 3:02 pm

Russia tried to have resolution passed at the UN in favour of the INF Treaty. It was blocked by Washington's EU lickspittles including Germany. Never, ever take any pronouncement by NATzO hyenas at face value. When it comes time to put money where the mouth is, then true beliefs become apparent. These morons couldn't even support Russia's UN resolution although they are in harm's way from the death of the INF.

[Oct 28, 2018] Skripal and Khashoggi West Manufactures Absurd Fantasy to Pin on Russia, Lets Saudi Get Away With Chopping up WaPo Journalist by Finian Cunningham

Oct 28, 2018 | russia-insider.com

Two disappearances, and two very different responses from Western governments, which illustrates their rank hypocrisy.

When former Russian spy Sergei Skripal went missing in England earlier this year, there was almost immediate punitive action by the British government and its NATO allies against Moscow. By contrast, Western governments are straining with restraint towards Saudi Arabia over the more shocking and provable case of murdered journalist Jamal Khashoggi.

The outcry by Western governments and media over the Skripal affair was deafening and resulted in Britain, the US and some 28 other countries expelling dozens of Russian diplomats on the back of unsubstantiated British allegations that the Kremlin tried to assassinate an exiled spy with a deadly nerve agent. The Trump administration has further tightened sanctions citing the Skripal incident.

London's case against Moscow has been marked by wild speculation and ropey innuendo. No verifiable evidence of what actually happened to Sergei Skripal (67) and his daughter Yulia has been presented by the British authorities . Their claim that President Vladimir Putin sanctioned a hit squad armed with nerve poison relies on sheer conjecture.

All we know for sure is that the Skripals have been disappeared from public contact by the British authorities for more than seven months, since the mysterious incident of alleged poisoning in Salisbury on March 4.

Russian authorities and family relatives have been steadfastly refused any contact by London with the Skripal pair, despite more than 60 official requests from Moscow in accordance with international law and in spite of the fact that Yulia is a citizen of the Russian Federation with consular rights.

It is an outrage that based on such thin ice of "evidence", the British have built an edifice of censure against Moscow, rallying an international campaign of further sanctions and diplomatic expulsions.

Now contrast that strenuous reaction, indeed hyper over-reaction, with how Britain, the US, France, Canada and other Western governments are ever-so slowly responding to Saudi Arabia over the Khashoggi case.

After nearly two weeks since Jamal Khashoggi entered the Saudi consulate in Istanbul, Turkey, the Saudi regime is this week finally admitting he was killed on their premises – albeit, they claim, in a "botched interrogation".

... ... ...

Source: Strategic Culture

[Oct 28, 2018] Twitter was too busy banning 'Russians' to notice #MAGAbomber's threats

Notable quotes:
"... Whether Twitter had made an honest mistake, or scrambled to engage in damage control, is sort of immaterial at this point. Some of his posts have been archived , but not responses to them. All that suspending his account accomplished is to make it more difficult to parse the Florida man's motives. By the way, Sayoc's Facebook page was likewise taken down on Friday. ..."
"... Reprinted with permission from RT . ..."
Oct 28, 2018 | ronpaulinstitute.org

The history of criminal behavior and online threats by Cesar Sayoc, the Florida man charged with sending suspicious packages to prominent Democrats, somehow went ignored by both government and social media police.

Sayoc, 56, was arrested on Friday, and stands accused of sending pipe bombs - 14, as of the last count - to former presidents Bill Clinton and Barack Obama, actor Robert De Niro, billionaire Democrat donors George Soros and Tom Steyer, and several Democrat lawmakers.

Federal authorities have refused to speculate on the suspect's motives, but news outlets quickly pored over Sayoc's social media feeds , finding photos and videos of pro-Trump memes, Trump rallies, and abusive language towards Democrats. A van in which he reportedly lived, after losing his home to foreclosure, was covered in pro-Trump decals. Twitter #Resistance activists, who had already coined the term "MAGAbomber" to describe the suspect, rejoiced.

It was Sayoc's prior run-ins with the law that allowed the FBI to find him, matching a fingerprint and DNA from some of the packages to samples they had on file. His criminal record shows charges of grand theft, misdemeanor theft, battery, felony steroid possession, and even threatening a bomb attack in 2002 - leaving an open question of how he kept getting away with it all, over and over again.

Then there is the matter of Sayoc's social media accounts. Over the past two years, under intense pressure by Democrats and drummed-up charges of "Russian meddling," Twitter and Facebook have cracked down on users left and right . Time and again, people engaging in protected free speech have been " shadowbanned " or suspended, permanently or until they deleted posts someone reported as "offensive."

Yet when Democratic strategist Rochelle Ritchie actually reported Sayoc's account to Twitter two weeks ago, over a threat she received from him after appearing on a Fox News show, Twitter did not find the post objectionable .

Richie then received an email from Twitter saying the previous response to her complaint had been "an error."

Whether Twitter had made an honest mistake, or scrambled to engage in damage control, is sort of immaterial at this point. Some of his posts have been archived , but not responses to them. All that suspending his account accomplished is to make it more difficult to parse the Florida man's motives. By the way, Sayoc's Facebook page was likewise taken down on Friday.

Both Twitter and Facebook claim they are trying to improve "conversations" on their platforms, and that their purges are nonpartisan. While technically correct, that's misleading. Establishment figures and outfits somehow always skate, while both critics of Clintonism on the left and Trump Republicans end up under the banhammer.

Meanwhile, the social media giants continue to insist they are not publishers, and delegate the dirty work of policing to quasi-NGOs like the National Endowment for Democracy and the Atlantic Council . They end up deciding who's a "Russian bot" or "Iranian troll" based on arbitrary criteria, which the mainstream media repeats uncritically.

That someone like Sayoc ended up under the radar of both the authorities and social media police suggests that he was either deliberately tolerated, or that their "defense of democracy" is a sham. It is perhaps fitting that none of Sayoc's bombs actually exploded; the only thing they blew up in the end seems to be some illusions.

Reprinted with permission from RT .

[Oct 27, 2018] Trump Surrenders to John Bolton on Russia and Arms Control by Scott Ritter

Notable quotes:
"... Trump appears to have surrendered to the anti-arms control philosophy of John Bolton, who views such agreements as unduly restricting American power. (Bolton was also behind the 2001 decision by President George W. Bush to withdraw from the 1972 Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty, an act the Russians viewed as inherently destabilizing.) ..."
"... By involving China, which was not a signatory to the INF Treaty, into the mix, the president appears to be engaging in a crude negotiating gambit designed to shore up a weak case for leaving the 1987 arms control agreement by playing on previous Russian sensitivities about Chinese nuclear capabilities. ..."
"... Although unspoken, both Bolton and Trump appear to be trying to drive a wedge between Russia and China. They're doing so as those two nations are coming together to craft a joint response to what they view as American overreach on trade and international security. While the Russian concerns over Chinese INF capabilities might have held true a decade ago, that doesn't seem to be the case any longer. ..."
"... The deployment of Pershing II missiles to Europe in the fall of 1983 left the Soviet leadership concerned that the U.S. was seeking to acquire a viable nuclear first-strike capability against the Soviet Union. The Soviets increased their intelligence collection efforts against U.S. targets to be able to detect in advance any U.S./NATO first-strike attack, as well as a "launch on detection" plan to counter any such attack. ..."
"... In November 1983, when the U.S. conducted a full-scale rehearsal for nuclear war in Europe, code-named Able Archer 83, Soviet intelligence interpreted the exercise preparations for the real thing. As a result, Soviet strategic nuclear forces were put on full alert, needing only an order from then-general secretary Yuri Andropov to launch. ..."
"... If the U.S. were ever to make use of the Mk-41 in an anti-missile configuration, the Russians would have seconds to decide if they were being attacked by nuclear-armed cruise missiles. Putin, in a recent speech delivered in Sochi, publicly stated that the Russian nuclear posture operated under the concept of "launch on warning," meaning once a U.S. or NATO missile strike was detected, Russia would immediately respond with the totality of its nuclear arsenal to annihilate the attacking parties. "We would be victims of an aggression and would get to heaven as martyrs," Putin said . Those who attacked Russia would "just die and not even have time to repent." ..."
"... There is no master plan here, no eleven dimensional chess. Trump appears to be weak, stupid, ill-informed and easily manipulated because he in fact is weak, stupid, ill-informed and easily manipulated. ..."
Oct 27, 2018 | www.theamericanconservative.com

Of course he's not the first president the arch hawk has convinced to ditch a nuke treaty Declaring that "there is a new strategic reality out there," President Donald Trump's hardline national security advisor John Bolton announced during a visit to Moscow earlier this week that the United States would be withdrawing from the 31-year-old Intermediate Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty. "This was a Cold War bilateral ballistic missile-related treaty," Bolton said, "in a multi-polar ballistic missile world."

"It is the American position that Russia is in violation," Bolton told reporters after a 90-minute meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin. "Russia's position is that they aren't. So one has to ask how to ask the Russians to come back into compliance with something they don't think they're violating."

Left unsaid by Bolton was the fact that the Russians have been asking the U.S. to provide evidence to substantiate its allegations of Russian noncompliance, something it so far has not done. "The Americans have failed to provide hard facts to substantiate their accusations," a Kremlin spokesperson noted last December after a U.S. delegation was briefed NATO on the allegations. "They just cannot provide them, because such evidence essentially does not exist."

Bolton's declaration mirrored an earlier statement by Trump announcing that "I'm terminating the agreement because [the Russians] violated the agreement." When asked if his comments were meant as a threat to Putin, Trump responded, "It's a threat to whoever you want. And it includes China, and it includes Russia, and it includes anybody else that wants to play that game. You can't do that. You can't play that game on me."

Trump appears to have surrendered to the anti-arms control philosophy of John Bolton, who views such agreements as unduly restricting American power. (Bolton was also behind the 2001 decision by President George W. Bush to withdraw from the 1972 Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty, an act the Russians viewed as inherently destabilizing.)

By involving China, which was not a signatory to the INF Treaty, into the mix, the president appears to be engaging in a crude negotiating gambit designed to shore up a weak case for leaving the 1987 arms control agreement by playing on previous Russian sensitivities about Chinese nuclear capabilities.

In 2007, Putin had threatened to withdraw from the INF Treaty because of these reasons. "We are speaking about the plans of a number of neighboring countries developing short- and mid-range missile systems," Dmitry Peskov, Putin's spokesperson, said at the time , citing China, India and Pakistan. "While our two countries [the U.S. and Russia] are bound by the provisions of the INF treaty there will be a certain imbalance in the region."

Although unspoken, both Bolton and Trump appear to be trying to drive a wedge between Russia and China. They're doing so as those two nations are coming together to craft a joint response to what they view as American overreach on trade and international security. While the Russian concerns over Chinese INF capabilities might have held true a decade ago, that doesn't seem to be the case any longer.

"The Chinese missile program is not related to the INF problem," Konstantin Sivkov, a member of the Russian Academy of Missile and Ammunition Sciences, recently observed . "China has always had medium-range missiles, because it did not enter into a bilateral treaty with the United States on medium and shorter-range missiles." America's speculations about Chinese missiles are "just an excuse" to withdraw from the INF Treaty, the Russian arms control expert charged.

Will Congress Have the Spine to Defy Trump on a Russian Nuke Treaty? Trump Needs to Put Up or Shut Up on Russian Arms Race

Moreover, China doesn't seem to be taking the bait. Yang Chengjun, a Chinese missile expert, observed that the U.S. decision to withdraw from the INF Treaty would have a "negative" impact on China's national security, noting that Beijing "would have to push ahead with the modest development of medium-range missiles" in response. These weapons would be fielded to counter any American build-up in the region, and as such would not necessarily be seen by Russia as representing a threat.

Any student of the INF Treaty knows that the issue of Russia's national security posture vis-à-vis China was understood fully when the then-USSR signed on to the agreement. During the negotiations surrounding INF in the 1970s and 1980s, the Soviets had sought to retain an INF capability in Asia as part of its Chinese deterrence posture. Indeed, the Soviet insistence on keeping such a force was one of the main reasons behind the "zero option" put forward by the U.S. in 1982, where a total ban on INF-capable weapons was proposed. The U.S. knew that the total elimination of INF systems was a poison pill that Russia simply would not swallow, thereby dooming future negotiations.

Mikhail Gorbachev turned the tables on the Americans in 1986, when he embraced the "zero option" and called upon the U.S. to enter into an agreement that banned INF-capable weapons. For the Soviet Union, eliminating the threat to its national security posed by American INF weapons based in Europe was far more important than retaining a limited nuclear deterrence option against China.

The deployment of Pershing II missiles to Europe in the fall of 1983 left the Soviet leadership concerned that the U.S. was seeking to acquire a viable nuclear first-strike capability against the Soviet Union. The Soviets increased their intelligence collection efforts against U.S. targets to be able to detect in advance any U.S./NATO first-strike attack, as well as a "launch on detection" plan to counter any such attack.

In November 1983, when the U.S. conducted a full-scale rehearsal for nuclear war in Europe, code-named Able Archer 83, Soviet intelligence interpreted the exercise preparations for the real thing. As a result, Soviet strategic nuclear forces were put on full alert, needing only an order from then-general secretary Yuri Andropov to launch.

The Soviet system had just undergone a stress test of sorts in September 1983, when malfunctioning early warning satellites indicated that the U.S. had launched five Minuteman 3 Intercontinental missiles toward the Soviet Union. Only the actions of the Soviet duty officer, who correctly identified the warning as a false alarm, prevented a possible nuclear retaliatory strike.

A similar false alarm, this time in 1995, underscored the danger of hair-trigger alert status when it comes to nuclear weapons -- the launch of a Norwegian research rocket was interpreted by Russian radar technicians as being a solo U.S. nuclear missile intended to disrupt Russian defenses by means of an electromagnetic pulse generated by a nuclear air burst. Russia's president at the time, Boris Yeltsin, ordered the Russian nuclear codes to be prepared for an immediate Russian counter-strike, and was on the verge of ordering the launch when Russian analysts determined the real purpose of the rocket, and the crisis passed.

The Europeans had initially balked at the idea of deploying American INF weapons on their territory, fearful that the weapons would be little more than targets for a Soviet nuclear attack, resulting in the destruction of Europe while the United States remained unharmed. To alleviate European concerns, the U.S. agreed to integrate its INF systems with its overall strategic nuclear deterrence posture, meaning that the employment of INF nuclear weapons would trigger an automatic strategic nuclear response. This approach was designed to increase the deterrence value of the INF weapons, since there would be no "localized" nuclear war. But it also meant that given the reduced flight times associated with European-based INF systems, each side would be on a hair-trigger alert, with little or no margin for error. It was the suicidal nature of this arrangement that helped propel Gorbachev and President Ronald Reagan to sign the INF Treaty on December 8, 1987.

This history seems to be lost on both Trump and Bolton. Moreover, the recent deployment of the Mk-41 Universal Launch System, also known as Aegis Ashore, in Romania and Poland as part of a NATO ballistic missile shield only increases the danger of inadvertent conflict. Currently configured to fire the SM-3 surface-to-air missile, the Mk-41 is also capable of firing Tomahawk cruise missiles which, if launched in a ground configuration, would represent a violation of the INF Treaty. The U.S. Congress has authorized $58 billion in FY 2018 to fund development of an INF system, the leading candidate for which is a converted Tomahawk.

If the U.S. were ever to make use of the Mk-41 in an anti-missile configuration, the Russians would have seconds to decide if they were being attacked by nuclear-armed cruise missiles. Putin, in a recent speech delivered in Sochi, publicly stated that the Russian nuclear posture operated under the concept of "launch on warning," meaning once a U.S. or NATO missile strike was detected, Russia would immediately respond with the totality of its nuclear arsenal to annihilate the attacking parties. "We would be victims of an aggression and would get to heaven as martyrs," Putin said . Those who attacked Russia would "just die and not even have time to repent."

"We'll have to develop those weapons," Trump noted when he announced his decision to leave the INF Treaty, adding "we have a tremendous amount of money to play with our military." Nuclear deterrence isn't a game -- it is, as Putin noted, a matter of life and death, where one split second miscalculation can destroy entire nations, if not the world. One can only hope that the one-time real estate mogul turned president can figure this out before it is too late; declaring bankruptcy in nuclear conflict is not an option.

Scott Ritter is a former Marine Corps intelligence officer who served in the former Soviet Union implementing arms control treaties, in the Persian Gulf during Operation Desert Storm, and in Iraq overseeing the disarmament of WMD. He is the author of Deal of the Century: How Iran Blocked the West's Road to War .


General Manager October 25, 2018 at 9:41 pm

What Sheldon Adelson wants, Sheldon gets. Shame on Trump.
EliteCommInc , says: October 25, 2018 at 11:40 pm
"Left unsaid by Bolton was the fact that the Russians have been asking the U.S. to provide evidence to substantiate its allegations of Russian noncompliance, something it so far has not done. "

Always the bottom line. And that has been our folly since 9/11. We have not had proof to justify our actions. And the fact that this executive continues mollywog forward based soley on the accusations of "knowledgeable advisers"

Laugh -- just makes for bad policy.
-- -- -- -- -- -- -- -

But again the president has no ground. He has acknowledged that Russia sabotaged or attempted to sabotage the US electoral process and believes as to the record that Russia engaged in murder and attempted murder at the behest of Pres. Putin.

Anything less than aggressive confrontation makes him appear

1. he distrusts the intel and mil. community

2. he is too weak to stand up to Russia

3. actually colluded with Russia in sabotaging the
election

4. a combination of above

Minus the courage to stand his preferred course – foreign policy with Russia has been relinquished to others. Even if their leadership has been repeatedly a failure.

Ohhh well. frustrating

Christian Chuba , says: October 26, 2018 at 7:15 am
Comments on the Yahoo message board (aptly named) capture the true reason quite well. We bankrupted the Russians in the 1980's and we will do it again. There is an axiom Generals always prepare for the last war.

Why compromise when you can win? Accusing your opponents of aggression and claiming the moral high ground is just a bonus. We will break up Russia into even smaller pieces, Crimea gone for good, Chechnya gone, far east gone, arctic claims gone, ?

Sisera , says: October 26, 2018 at 10:46 am
@GeneralManager

Agreed, and what's left out of Trump-Russia discussions is how the Israelis wanted Trump to do a charm offensive to the Russians over Syria. The idea was at Bibi's orders (from as early as 2016) the US would relieve sanctions on Russia in exchange for Russia forcing Iranians to leave Syria. It may also be used as Russia's permission for an US-led Iranian invasion.

However, Israel just cannot help itself and persistent attacks on Syrians (not merely Iranians) convinced the Russians they were bad faith actors. This was reported in Haaretz over the summer but I've lost the link.

Sid Finster , says: October 26, 2018 at 11:20 am
There is no master plan here, no eleven dimensional chess. Trump appears to be weak, stupid, ill-informed and easily manipulated because he in fact is weak, stupid, ill-informed and easily manipulated.
say who and who say , says: October 26, 2018 at 3:52 pm
Trump surrenders to whoever's whispering in his ear. It happens to be Bolton, which is bad.

He surrenders because he has to, which is because he's stone ignorant about important stuff.

That's all there is, baby. Bolton talks, Trump listens, and next thing you know it's fifty years ago and we're in a nuclear arms race. This "the President wants" stuff you hear from Bolton is a joke. It's "John Bolton wants, and the President says".

[Oct 27, 2018] Who profits from the end of the mid-range nuclear treaty Asia Times

Notable quotes:
"... The harsh language may not be exactly diplomatic. What it does is reflect plenty of exasperation towards the US conservatives who peddle the absurd notion of a "limited" nuclear war. ..."
"... The harsh language also reflects a certainty that whatever the degree of escalation envisaged by the Trump administration and the Pentagon, that won't be enough to neutralize Russian hypersonic missiles. ..."
"... So, it's no wonder that EU diplomats, trying to ease their discomfort, recognize that this, in the end, is all about the Full Spectrum Dominance doctrine and the necessity of keeping the massive US military-industrial-surveillance complex running. ..."
Oct 27, 2018 | www.atimes.com

By now it's clear the Trump administration's rationale for pulling out of the INF Treaty is due, in Bolton's words, to "a new strategic reality". The INF is being dismissed as a "bilateral treaty in a multipolar ballistic missile world", which does not take into consideration the missile capabilities of China, Iran and North Korea.

But there is a slight problem. The INF Treaty limits missiles with a range from 500 km to 5,000 km. China, Iran and North Korea simply cannot pose a "threat" to the United States by deploying such missiles. The INF is all about the European theater of war.

So, it's no wonder the reaction in Brussels and major European capitals has been of barely disguised horror.

EU diplomats have told Asia Times the US decision was a "shock", and "the last straw for the EU as it jeopardizes our very existence, subjecting us to nuclear destruction by short-range missiles", which would never be able to reach the US heartland.

The "China" reason – that Russia is selling Beijing advanced missile technology – simply does not cut it in Europe, as the absolute priority is European security. EU diplomats are establishing a parallel to the possibility – which was more than real last year – that Washington could nuclear-bomb North Korea unilaterally. South Korea and Japan, in that case, would be nuclear "collateral damage". The same might happen to Europe in the event of a US-Russia nuclear shoot-out.

It goes without saying that shelving the INF could even accelerate the demise of the whole post-WWII Western alliance, heralding a remix of the 1930s with a vengeance.

And the clock keeps ticking

Reports that should be critically examined in detail assert that US superiority over China's military power is rapidly shrinking. Yet China is not much of a military technology powerhouse compared to Russia and its state of the art hypersonic missiles.

NATO may be relatively strong on the missile front – but it still wouldn't be able to compete with Russia in a potential battle in Europe.

The supreme danger, in Doomsday Clock terms, is the obsession by certain US neocon factions that Washington could prevail in a "limited", localized, tactical nuclear war against Russia.

That's the whole rationale behind extending US first-strike capability as close as possible to the Russian western borderlands.

Russian analysts stress that Moscow is already – "unofficially" – perfecting what would be their own first-strike capability in these borderlands. The mere hint of NATO attempting to start a countdown in Poland, the Baltics or the Black Sea may be enough to encourage Russia to strike.

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov starkly refuted Trump and Bolton's claims that Russia was violating the INF Treaty: "As far as we understood, the US side has made a decision, and it will launch formal procedures for withdrawing from this treaty in the near future."

As for Russia's resolve, everything one needs to know is part of Putin's detailed intervention at the Valdai Economic Forum . Essentially, Putin did not offer any breaking news – but a stark reminder that Moscow will strike back at any provocation configured as a threat to the future of Russia.

Russians, in this case, would "die like martyrs" and the response to an attack would be so swift and brutal that the attackers would "die like dogs".

The harsh language may not be exactly diplomatic. What it does is reflect plenty of exasperation towards the US conservatives who peddle the absurd notion of a "limited" nuclear war.

The harsh language also reflects a certainty that whatever the degree of escalation envisaged by the Trump administration and the Pentagon, that won't be enough to neutralize Russian hypersonic missiles.

So, it's no wonder that EU diplomats, trying to ease their discomfort, recognize that this, in the end, is all about the Full Spectrum Dominance doctrine and the necessity of keeping the massive US military-industrial-surveillance complex running.

Even as the clock keeps ticking closer to midnight.

[Oct 25, 2018] RUSSIAN FEDERATION SITREP 25 OCTOBER 2018 by Patrick Armstrong

Notable quotes:
"... NATO is a defensive Alliance... committed to defense and deterrence. " A defensive alliance with a moving doorstep. ..."
"... USS Donald Cook ..."
Oct 25, 2018 | turcopolier.typepad.com

CHURCH DISPUTE. I dreaded having to write something because I really don't know enough. But US Secretary of State Pompeo has saved me much study by proving that those who see the hand of Washington are correct to do so: " We urge Church and government officials to actively promote these values in connection with the move towards the establishment of an autocephalous Ukrainian Orthodox Church ." Who knew an avowedly secular state like the USA felt competent to make rulings on such esoterica as ethnophyletism or autocephaly? You've heard Official Washington's opinion (swiftly retransmitted by your local news outlet ), here are others: one , two , three , four , five . Their argument is that Constantinople has arrogated too much to himself and Orthodoxy will split; Washington & Co talk of "freedom" (but don't show much understanding of who's who). This further excuse for violence will increase the misery of Ukraine. (And, ironically, the dominant church in western Ukraine, the home of the Ukrainian nationalism that's driving things, has nothing to do with this: it's under Rome .)

NUCLEAR DOCTRINE. At Valdai, Putin made a statement on Russia's nuclear doctrine . No change, but with a twist that caught people's attention: "Our concept is based on a reciprocal counter strike... any aggressor should know that retaliation is inevitable and they will be annihilated." The attention-catching part was "And we as the victims of an aggression, we as martyrs would go to paradise while they will simply perish because they won't even have time to repent their sins". Don't forget that American spokesmen have made some stupidly aggressive statements lately.

DRONE ATTACK. The Russian MoD says a US aircraft coordinated the January drone attack on their Syrian bases .

EXPLOSION. There was an explosion and shooting at the Kerch Polytechnic College in Crimea and a number of people were killed. It is said to have been done by one student who then killed himself .

RUSSIA INC. Russia has climbed two places the World Economic Forum ranking to 43 of 140. Current account surplus predicted .

AGRICULTURE. One of the most surprising developments to me, who remembers farms in the 1990s, has been Russia's agricultural turnaround. This five-minute report gives an introduction.

STRATEGIC CULTURE FOUNDATION. Let me put in a plug for this site . It has now acquired quite a stable of writers (myself included) and is a good place to get alternative views to those repeated by the drearily monotonic Western outlets. There may be Russian government money behind it but my bet is that the government's effort is still in RT (see below). My guess (and another author's) is that it's bankrolled by a rich Russian who's tired of the endless anti-Russia coverage. I have never had anything I have written changed or censored. I recommend you bookmark it.

WESTERN VALUES™. Enjoying the irony, RT introduces New Samizdat to bring you the news that the Zap GlavLit (if I may coin a neologism) hides.

NUGGETS FROM THE STUPIDITY MINE. Watch it . Adam Schiff , senior Democrat on House Intelligence Committee.

NATO EXERCISE. NATO bravely shows it won't be intimidated by R ussia's building up its military on its doorstep by holding an exercis e on said doorstep . " NATO is a defensive Alliance... committed to defense and deterrence. " A defensive alliance with a moving doorstep.

INF TREATY. Trump talks of pulling the US out. Is this the loud prelude to re-negotiation that we saw him do with Korea and NAFTA? Or is he clearing the battlespace for the expected damp squib from Mueller or a blue dribble ? Tune in in mid-November.

NEW NWO. " The Perfect Storm Bringing China And Russia Together ".

OOPS. Apparently many US weapons are very vulnerable to cyberattacks . Stories of cruise missile attacks , USS Donald Cook , destroyers rammed by container ships make you wonder, don't they?

UKRAINE. " Entrepreneurs of political violence: the varied interests and strategies of the far-right in Ukraine" In Open Democracy no less. Bit by bit the word is seeping out. IMF rates Ukraine the poorest country in Europe . This piece gives a summary of its problems with Hungary, Poland and Belarus .

GEORGIA. The Chief Prosecutor's Office says it has a recording that proves Saakashvili sanctioned the murder of Patarkatsishvili . ( English ) ( Georgian ) ( At the time some UK outlets blamed Putin but when they discovered he was Saakashvili's enemy they quickly shut up.)

[Oct 25, 2018] The Crumbling Architecture of Nuclear Arms Control

Notable quotes:
"... By Dan Smith, Director of the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute . He is also a part-time Professor of Peace and Conflict Studies at the University of Manchester, affiliated with the Humanitarian and Conflict Response Institute . Until August, 2015, he was Secretary General of International Alert , the London-based international peacebuilding organization. Originally published at his blog ; cross posted from openDemocracy ..."
Oct 25, 2018 | www.nakedcapitalism.com

By Dan Smith, Director of the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute . He is also a part-time Professor of Peace and Conflict Studies at the University of Manchester, affiliated with the Humanitarian and Conflict Response Institute . Until August, 2015, he was Secretary General of International Alert , the London-based international peacebuilding organization. Originally published at his blog ; cross posted from openDemocracy

At a political rally on Saturday 20 October President Trump announced that the US will withdraw from the Intermediate Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty of 1987. This confirms what has steadily unfolded over the last couple of years: the architecture of US-Russian nuclear arms control is crumbling.

Building Blocks of Arms Control

As the Cold War ended, four new building blocks of east-west arms control were laid on top of foundations set by the Anti-Ballistic Missile (ABM) Treaty of 1972:

1991 Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (START) reduced the numbers of strategic nuclear weapons; further cuts were agreed in 2002 and again in 2010 in the New START agreement. – The 1990 Treaty on Conventional Forces in Europe (CFE Treaty) capped at equal levels the number of heavy weapons deployed between the Atlantic and the Urals by the then-members of both the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) and the Warsaw Treaty Organization (WTO). – The 1991 Presidential Nuclear Initiatives (PNIs) were parallel, unilateral but agreed actions by both the US and the USSR to eliminate short-range tactical nuclear weapons, of which thousands existed.

Taken together, the nuclear measures – the INF Treaty, START and PNIs – had a major impact, as this graph from the Federation of American Scientists shows:

The fastest pace of reduction was in the 1990s. A deceleration began just before the new century started, and there has been a further easing of the pace in the last six years. But year by year, the number continues to fall. By the start of 2018 the global total of nuclear weapons was 14,700 compared to an all-time high of some 70,000 in the mid-1980s. Nuclear weapons are more capable in many ways than before; the reduction is, nonetheless, both large and significant.

Cracks Appear: Charge and Counter-Charge

Even while the numbers continued to drop, problems were emerging. Not least, in 2002 the US unilaterally withdrew from the ABM Treaty. That did not stop the US and Russia signing the Strategic Offensive Reductions Treaty in 2002 or New START in 2010 but perhaps it presaged later developments.

Trump's announcement brings towards its conclusion a process that has been going on for several years . The US declared Russia to be violating the Treaty in July 2014. That, of course, was during the Obama administration. The allegation that Russia has breached the INF Treaty, in other words, is not new. This year the USA's NATO allies also aligned themselves with the US accusation, albeit somewhat guardedly (cf the careful wording in paragraph 46 of the July Summit Declaration ).

The charge is that Russia has developed a ground-launched cruise missile with a range over 500 kilometres. Many details have not been clearly stated publicly but it seems Russia may have modified a sea-launched missile (the Kalibr ) and combined it with a mobile ground-based launcher (the Iskander K system). The modified system is known sometimes as the 9M729 , or t he SSC-8, or the SSC-X-8 .

Russia rejects the US accusation. It makes the counter-charge that the US has itself violated the Treaty in three ways: first by using missiles banned under the Treaty for target practice; second because some US drones are effectively cruise missiles; and third because it has taken a maritime missile defence system and based it on land ( Aegis Ashore ) although its launch tubes could, the Russians say, be used for intermediate range missiles. Naturally, the US rejects these charges.

A further Russian criticism of the US over the INF Treaty is that, if the US wanted to discuss alleged non-compliance, it should have used the Treaty's Special Verification Commission before going public. This was designed specifically to address questions about each side's compliance. It did not meet between 2003 and November 2016; it was during that 13-year interval that US concerns about Russian cruise missiles arose.

Now Trump seems to have closed the argument by announcing withdrawal. Under Article XV of the Treaty, withdrawal can happen after six months' notice. Unless there is a timely change of approach by either side or both, the Treaty looks likely to be a dead letter by April 2019.

It could be, however, that the announcement is intended as a manoeuvre to get concessions from the Russian side on the alleged missile deployment or on other aspects of an increasingly tense US-Russian relationship. That is what Russian deputy foreign minister, Sergei Ryabkov, implied by calling it "blackmail".

Arms Control in Trouble

Whether the imminence of the INF Treaty's demise is more apparent than real, its plight is part of a bigger picture. Arms control is in deep trouble. As well as the US abrogation of the ABM Treaty in 2002,

effectively withdrew from the CFE Treaty in 2015 arguing that the equal cap was no longer fair when five former Warsaw Pact states had joined NATO. – The 2010 New START agreement on strategic nuclear arms lasts until 2021 and there are currently no talks about prolonging or replacing it. – Russia claims that the US is technically violating New START because some launchers have been converted to non-nuclear use in a way that is not visible to Russia so it cannot verify them in the way the Treaty says it must be able to. The Russian government's position is that until this is resolved, it is not possible to start work on the prolongation of New START, despite its imminent expiry date.

It seems likely that the precarious situation of US-Russian arms control will simultaneously put increasing pressure on the overall nuclear non-proliferation regime, and sharpen the arguments about the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons . For the advocates of what is often known as the nuclear ban, the erosion of arms control reinforces the case for moving forward to a world without nuclear weapons. For its opponents, the erosion of arms control shows the world is not at all ready for or capable of a nuclear ban.

The risk of a return to nuclear weapons build-ups by both Russia and the US is visible. We risk losing the degree of safety we gained with the end of the Cold War and have enjoyed since then. With US National Security Advisor John Bolton in Moscow as I write, and more importantly with the well-earned reputation for springing surprises that the US and Russian Presidents both have, there may be more developments in one direction or another in the coming days or weeks.


The Rev Kev , October 25, 2018 at 6:22 am

The British author John Wyndham once wrote that 95 per cent of the human race wants to live in peace while the other 5 per cent was always considering its chances if it should risk starting anything. It was chiefly because no one's chances looked too good, what with nuclear weapons, that the lull after WW2 continued. Now it looks like a new generation of wonks who are not reality-based want to put the US in the position of being able to launch a pre-emptive nuclear attack on at least Russia with missiles based in Europe. Like with the old Pershing missiles, tough luck if you live in Europe. Russia has already said that they will target any European country that houses these missiles with nukes.
Saw a hint on RT that if the US continues these efforts, that Russia may develop missiles that could set off the Yellowstone Caldera. That would be not good. The Russians are always ready to negotiate but the problem is that the US now has a reputation of being agreement-incapable. Remember that Bush was stationing missiles in Europe as a shield against non-existent Iranian nukes on top of Iranian missiles that did not have the range. Russia suggested that the missiles be located in Turkey but the US refused. After the Iran treaty went into effect, the US announced that – surprise, surprise – the missiles were for use against Russia after all. How do you negotiate with something like that?

Bill Smith , October 25, 2018 at 7:04 am

In regard to the INF Treaty the Russian newspapers have had some stories that they consider that particular treaty likely the worst they ever signed. That's because the USSR gave up many more missiles than the US did. The articles also mention that the Russians feel they are many counties that have those type of missiles all around them. For example, China, Pakistan, Iran and Israel are specially mentioned. Lastly the technology has changed so much in the 30 or so years since that treaty was signed.

In a better time a new series of treaties might be negotiated but these are not better times.

David , October 25, 2018 at 10:45 am

Ambassador Bolton agrees with you. ( source )

But there is a larger question here – I think one that applies to both Russia and the United States – and that's the countries that are producing intermediate range ballistic missiles and cruise missiles right now, specifically Iran, China and North Korea. We have this very unusual circumstance where the United States and Russia are in a bilateral treaty, whereas other countries in the world are not bound by it. Now some of the successor states to the Soviet Union are bound by it, but it's really only Russia that has the wherewithal to have this kind of program. So it has been the view of the United States, in effect, that only two countries were bound by the INF treaty.

It appears that Mr. Trump likes bilateral trade agreements and multi-lateral arms agreeements.

Tomonthebeach , October 25, 2018 at 2:23 pm

This is all part of Bolton's war on Russia. Like Trump, he indulges in old score-settling with Beltway & Pentagon colleagues as well as proving he was right all along to oppose these and most other treaties. I am highly suspicious of this entire fiasco.

Why are we so preoccupied with a country that has an economy a fifth the size of the US alone (much less NATO/EU)? Even if allied with China and NATO ally (?) Califwannabe Erdogan, Russia is more annoying than a threat.

Bolton, on the other hand, scares the crap out me. He's just plain nuts.

Lambert Strether , October 25, 2018 at 7:55 am

I'm very glad this post is up. That this isn't a huge story is a fine example of "The tyranny of the urgent." (Those who read the transcript of Putin at the Valdai Club may recall this passage :

[PUTIN] Look, we live in a world where security relies on nuclear capability. Russia is one of the largest nuclear powers. You may be aware, I have said it publicly, we are improving our attack systems as an answer to the United States building its missile defence system. Some of these systems have already been fielded, and some will be put into service in the coming months. I am talking about the Avangard system. Clearly, we have overtaken all our, so to speak, partners and competitors in this sphere, and this fact is acknowledged by the experts. No one has a high-precision hypersonic weapon. Some plan to begin testing it in one or two years, while we have this high-tech modern weapon in service. So, we feel confident in this sense.

Naturally, there are many other risks, but they are shared risks, such as environment, climate change, terrorism, which I mentioned, and proliferation of weapons of mass destruction. If we are unable to put an effective end to this, it is not clear where it will lead to, and in whose hands this deadly weapon may end up.

So, in this sense, nothing has changed. We are not going anywhere, we have a vast territory, and we do not need anything from anyone. But we value our sovereignty and independence. It has always been this way, at all times in the history of our state. It runs in the blood of our people, as I have repeatedly said. In this sense, we feel confident and calm.

And this:

I have said that our nuclear weapons doctrine does not provide for a pre-emptive strike. I would like to ask all of you and those who will later analyse and in one way or another interpret my every word here, to keep in mind that there is no provision for a pre-emptive strike in our nuclear weapons doctrine. Our concept is based on a reciprocal counter strike. There is no need to explain what this is to those who understand, as for those who do not, I would like to say it again: this means that we are prepared and will use nuclear weapons only when we know for certain that some potential aggressor is attacking Russia, our territory. I am not revealing a secret if I say that we have created a system which is being upgraded all the time as needed – a missile early warning radar system. This system monitors the globe, warning about the launch of any strategic missile at sea and identifying the area from which it was launched. Second, the system tracks the trajectory of a missile flight. Third, it locates a nuclear warhead drop zone.

Only when we know for certain – and this takes a few seconds to understand – that Russia is being attacked we will deliver a counter strike. This would be a reciprocal counter strike. Why do I say 'counter'? Because we will counter missiles flying towards us by sending a missile in the direction of an aggressor. Of course, this amounts to a global catastrophe but I would like to repeat that we cannot be the initiators of such a catastrophe because we have no provision for a pre-emptive strike. Yes, it looks like we are sitting on our hands and waiting until someone uses nuclear weapons against us. Well, yes, this is what it is. But then any aggressor should know that retaliation is inevitable and they will be annihilated. And we as the victims of an aggression, we as martyrs would go to paradise while they will simply perish because they won't even have time to repent their sins.

I've see a video of a fancy new weapon. Is it real?

Bill Smith , October 25, 2018 at 9:00 am

The Avangard is in testing or just completed testing. Depending what stories you see it has been successfully tested at least once. Even successful testing may not mean deployment. Earliest estimate for deployment is about 2020 in very limited numbers. I'm not sure how big a deal this thing is as it launched from an ICBM. How much faster than an incoming ICBM warhead does it move?

The Avangard has nothing to do with the INF.

The Russian nuclear doctrine does allow for the use of nuclear weapons – at least in fairly narrow circumstances. The wording implies the circumstances would "have to threaten the collapse of the state". First use in those circumstances might not be considered preemptive. Putin help write to doctrine when he was Secretary of the Russian National Security Council Staff .

Andrew Foland , October 25, 2018 at 9:04 am

Just a general thing, for those interested in excellent technical (both scientific and legal/compliance) commentary on arms control, I highly recommend Arms Control Wonk . The level of discussion is very high, the kind of level NC readers would appreciate. I'm in no way associated with it except for being a longtime reader.

Scott1 , October 25, 2018 at 1:28 pm

The UN was created not to sell Sustainable Development but to prevent Apocalyptic Riot. During the Cold War & a Bi Polar power balance of separate economics it did the job. However flawed it was, it did that one job.
Now it sits there selling Sustainable Development, which is great, but not what it was really made to do.
If the UN, or a new one with an overt and covert armed forces becomes the World's Unitary Power intent on eliminating nuclear weapons it could negotiate them away and fight a war or two, and be involved in a permanent level of conflict to keep the fields free of nukes.
In fact the banning of nuclear weapons would give a UN the power to enforce transformational energy programs. I have strong doubt that the UN as it exists now will prevent apocalyptic riot.
Human nature being what it is does not get excited and passionate about the environment. Humans get excited about big new power systems and war.

There has been a demonstrated desire to reduce the likelihood of nuclear war. The Cold War worked. During that period it was long only the US & the USSR that had nuclear bombs and delivery systems.
Russia moved into the Ukraine with tanks, took Crimea and got away with it. Pretty much the situation is that wherever you see tanks move you may see the employment of tactical nuclear weapons. A conventional ability to stop all tanks then is important for those nations vulnerable to tank attacks.
In fact I say that you cannot expect to reduce nuclear devices unless you address the reason for them, and that is to stop tanks. Reducing tanks first is then the right order to do things. Come to tank treaties first and then tackle nuclear weapons and the rest of the WMDs is what I say.

Jeremy Grimm , October 25, 2018 at 2:38 pm

'Tactical' nuclear weapons are not the only way to stop tanks. The Russian move into Crimea is hardly an argument for the superiority of a tank invasion or the need for tactical nuclear weapons. Tanks are effective in open relatively flat even terrain, and as long as you have control of the air and sufficient infantry support around them. If the objective is to stop a tank rather than destroy it there are ways. You could stop a tank by spraying glue over their weapons sight, or vision blocks, or the camera port for some of the more recent armored vehicles. Even if you can't stop a tank you can stop parts from coming in to make repairs or diesel to run the their hungry engines if their supply lines are not well protected. The tanks will quickly stop on their own. You could also stop tanks with opposing tanks if you're ready to absorb the costs for building the force and keep it ready to roll near an attack corridor. Tactical nuclear weapons might save a little money (???) but they are a hellish invention for increasing the threats to our fragile world as we transition through Climate Disruptions into the new Anthropocene Climate Regime.

While you're working on those tank treaties, please include ground mines especially those with plastic casings -- oh! and don't forget to eliminate those nasty spent-uranium shells.

rosemerry , October 25, 2018 at 4:36 pm

"Russia moved into the Ukraine with tanks, took Crimea and got away with it" Rather a warped interpretation of a situation where the USA had overthrown the Ukrainian government and Crimea had been part of Russia and the population overwhelmingly voted to return. NO bloodshed at all. The video "Crimea, the way back Home" is worth a look.

Jeremy Grimm , October 25, 2018 at 2:15 pm

This is a very disturbing post coming as it does only two days before Vasili Arkhipov day.

I cannot imagine what kind of people could seriously consider using nuclear weapons under any circumstance whatsoever.

[Oct 25, 2018] DNC Emails--A Seth Attack Not a Russian Hack by Publius Tacitus

Highly recommended!
Notable quotes:
"... Now there is new information, courtesy of the National Security Agency aka NSA, that confirms that the NSA has Top Secret and Secret documents that are responsive to a FOIA request for material on Seth Rich and his contacts with Julian Assange. While the content of these documents remain classified for now, they may provide documentary proof that Seth Rich "dropped boxed" the emails to Julian. If these documents are declassified, a big hole could be blown in the claim that Russia hacked the DNC. ..."
"... Another case of "Arkancide"? ..."
"... I came to this summary today after I had turned my T.V. off since all the news is now about the "bombs" being mailed to the Clintons and Obamas. (I was afraid a story line would soon continue that the bombs were from Russia via the White House. I can no longer feel certain that anything reported in the "news" is true and wonder what part of it is made up from thin air. ..."
"... And I am sad that such a huge number of American citizens simply no longer care what is true or what is not true. They believe only what they want to believe. Mostly I am sad that Seth Rich lived and died and few seem to want to know the facts surrounding his death. ..."
"... Guccifer 2.0 was nothing but an elaborate joke. ..."
Oct 25, 2018 | turcopolier.typepad.com

Tacitus01

If Russia had actually "hacked" the DNC emails then the National Security Agency would have had proof of such activity. In fact, the NSA could have tracked such activity. But they did not do that. That lack of evidence did not prevent a coordinated media campaign from spinning up to pin the blame on Russia for the "theft" and to portray Donald Trump as Putin's lackey and beneficiary.

Any effort to tell an alternative story has met with stout opposition. Fox News, for example, came under withering fire after it published an article in May 2017 claiming that Seth Rich, a young Democrat operative, had leaked DNC emails to Julian Assange at Wikileaks. The family of Seth Rich reacted with fury and sued Fox, Malia Zimmerman and Ed Butowsky, but that suit subsequently was dismissed.

Now there is new information, courtesy of the National Security Agency aka NSA, that confirms that the NSA has Top Secret and Secret documents that are responsive to a FOIA request for material on Seth Rich and his contacts with Julian Assange. While the content of these documents remain classified for now, they may provide documentary proof that Seth Rich "dropped boxed" the emails to Julian. If these documents are declassified, a big hole could be blown in the claim that Russia hacked the DNC.


Walrus , a day ago

Another case of "Arkancide"?
jnewman -> Walrus , 12 hours ago
Vince Foster?
DianaLC , 13 hours ago
PT, thank for the very detailed description of the entire story surrounding the supposed Russian hack of the DNC emails.

I always find myself screaming at the T.V. whenever a supposed reporter mentions the supposed Russian hack of the DNC computers as if such an event is settled history.

I came to this summary today after I had turned my T.V. off since all the news is now about the "bombs" being mailed to the Clintons and Obamas. (I was afraid a story line would soon continue that the bombs were from Russia via the White House. I can no longer feel certain that anything reported in the "news" is true and wonder what part of it is made up from thin air.

And I am sad that such a huge number of American citizens simply no longer care what is true or what is not true. They believe only what they want to believe. Mostly I am sad that Seth Rich lived and died and few seem to want to know the facts surrounding his death.

Snow Flake -> Lefty , 12 hours ago
Ellipsis, linguistically? Don't you automatically add what is omitted? ... Russia had (n't) anything ...

Guccifer 2.0 was nothing but an elaborate joke.

[Oct 25, 2018] Putin jokes with Bolton: Did the eagle eaten all the olives

Highly recommended!
John Bolton suffers a crippling shortage of olives.
Notable quotes:
"... "As far as I remember, the US coat of arms features a bald eagle that holds 13 arrows in one talon and an olive branch in another, which is a symbol of a peace-loving policy," ..."
"... "I have a question," ..."
"... "Looks like your eagle has already eaten all the olives; are the arrows all that is left?" ..."
Oct 25, 2018 | www.nakedcapitalism.com

Meeting with US national security adviser John Bolton in Moscow, Russian President Vladimir Putin made a comment about Washington's hostility that went right over the hawkish diplomat's head. "As far as I remember, the US coat of arms features a bald eagle that holds 13 arrows in one talon and an olive branch in another, which is a symbol of a peace-loving policy," Putin said in a meeting with Bolton in Moscow on Tuesday.

"I have a question," the Russian president added. "Looks like your eagle has already eaten all the olives; are the arrows all that is left?"

boz , October 23, 2018 at 3:49 pm

The Saker has the transcript of Putin's comments at a recent plenary in Sochi, small snippets of which have already appeared in the media.

http://thesaker.is/president-putin-meeting-of-the-valdai-international-discussion-club-2/

About 15-20 minutes to get through (the facilitator seems like a bit of a wet blanket), but fascinating to read, if like me, most of what you hear about Putin has been filtered through the MSM.

A couple of reflections:

Putin does detail. He is courteous and patient. He is highly pragmatic and appears to be widely (and, for my money, effectively) briefed.

Olga , October 23, 2018 at 5:33 pm

For those of us lucky enough to follow VVP in his native language – it is indeed a delight. (And – mind you – it was only after I took the time to follow him in his native language that I was able to appreciate this person and his leadership abilities. If one follows him through NYT – no chance that would give one an accurate picture.)
He is erudite, informed, and has a wicked sense of humour, as shown in this clip:
https://www.rt.com/news/442068-putin-olives-eagle-bolton/

[Oct 24, 2018] 10-3-18 Gareth Porter on Trump and the American Empire

Notable quotes:
"... Manufactured Crisis: The Untold Story of the Iran Nuclear Scare ..."
"... This episode of the Scott Horton Show is sponsored by: Kesslyn Runs , by Charles Featherstone; NoDev NoOps NoIT , by Hussein Badakhchani; The War State , by Mike Swanson; WallStreetWindow.com ; Roberts and Roberts Brokerage Inc. ; Zen Cash ; Tom Woods' Liberty Classroom ; ExpandDesigns.com/Scott ; and TheBumperSticker.com . ..."
Oct 08, 2018 | libertarianinstitute.org

Gareth Porter is interviewed on his article for Truthdig, " Can Trump Take Down the American Empire? " Porter talks about revelations in the Bob Woodward book "Fear", about the Trump presidency, and how they may pertain to the American Empire. Porter also talks about the Trump presidency, North Korea, and Iran.

Gareth Porter is an investigative historian and journalist on the national security state, and author of Manufactured Crisis: The Untold Story of the Iran Nuclear Scare . Follow him on Twitter @GarethPorter and listen to Gareth's previous appearances on the Scott Horton Show.

This episode of the Scott Horton Show is sponsored by: Kesslyn Runs , by Charles Featherstone; NoDev NoOps NoIT , by Hussein Badakhchani; The War State , by Mike Swanson; WallStreetWindow.com ; Roberts and Roberts Brokerage Inc. ; Zen Cash ; Tom Woods' Liberty Classroom ; ExpandDesigns.com/Scott ; and TheBumperSticker.com .

[Oct 23, 2018] Putin's Puppet Advances Nuclear Missile Escalations Against...Putin by Caitlin Johnstone

Oct 23, 2018 | www.zerohedge.com

Authored by Caitlin Johnstone via Medium.com,

Yesterday the news broke that Swamp Monster-In-Chief John Bolton has been pushing President Trump to withdraw from the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty, the 1988 arms control agreement between the US and the Soviet Union eliminating all missiles of a specified range from the arsenals of the two nuclear superpowers. Today, Trump has announced that he will be doing exactly as Bolton instructed.

This would be the second missile treaty between the US and Russia that America has withdrawn from since it abandoned the Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty in 2002. John Bolton, an actual psychopath who Trump hired as his National Security Advisor in April, ran point on that move as well back when he was part of the increasingly indistinguishable Bush administration.

me title=

"This is why John Bolton shouldn't be allowed anywhere near US foreign policy," tweeted Senator Rand Paul in response to early forecasts of the official announcement.

"This would undo decades of bipartisan arms control dating from Reagan. We shouldn't do it. We should seek to fix any problems with this treaty and move forward."

"This is the most severe crisis in nuclear arms control since the 1980s," Malcolm Chalmers, the deputy director general of the Royal United Services Institute, told The Guardian .

"If the INF treaty collapses, and with the New Start treaty on strategic arms due to expire in 2021, the world could be left without any limits on the nuclear arsenals of nuclear states for the first time since 1972."

"A disaster for Europe," tweeted Russia-based journalist Bryan MacDonald. "The treaty removed Cruise & Pershing missiles, and Soviet ss20's from the continent. Now, you will most likely see Russia launch a major build up in Kaliningrad & the US push into Poland. So you're back to 1980, but the dividing line is closer to Moscow."

"Russia has violated the agreement. They've been violating it for many years and I don't know why President Obama didn't negotiate or pull out," Trump told reporters in Nevada.

"We're not going to let them violate a nuclear agreement and do weapons and we're not allowed to. We're the ones that have stayed in the agreement and we've honored the agreement but Russia has not unfortunately honored the agreement so we're going to terminate the agreement, we're going to pull out."

What Trump did not mention is that the US has indeed been in violation of that agreement due to steps it began taking toward the development of a new ground-launched cruise missile last year. The US claims it began taking those steps due to Russian violations of the treaty with its own arsenal, while Russia claims the US has already been in violation of multiple arms control, nonproliferation, and disarmament agreements.

me title=

So, on the one front where cooler heads prevailing is quite literally the single most important thing in the world, the exact opposite is happening. Hotter, more impatient, more violent, more hawkish heads are prevailing over diplomacy and sensibility, potentially at the peril of the entire world should something unexpected go wrong as a result. This is of course coming after two years of Democratic Party loyalists attacking Trump on the basis that he has not been sufficiently hawkish toward Russia, and claiming that this is because he is Putin's puppet.

In response to this predictable escalation the path for which has been lubricated by McResistance pundits and their neoconservative allies, those very same pundits are now reacting with horror that Putin's puppet is now dangerously escalating tensions with Putin.

"BREAKING: Trump announces that the United States will pull out of the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty that the US has been in for 31 years," exclaimed the popular Russiagater Brian Krassenstein in a tweet that as of this writing has over 5,000 shares. "Welcome back to the Cold War. This time it's scarier And no, It's not Obama, or Hillary or the Democrat's fault. It's ALL TRUMP!"

"Hilarious to listen to all this alarmed screaming about US withdrawal from INF Treaty emanating from those who for 2 years have been demanding that Trump get tough with Russia," tweeted George Szamuely of the Global Policy Institute. "Now that they've got their arms race I hope they are pleased with themselves."

"Are those who have spent the past two years warning of a Trump-Kremlin conspiracy & cheering confrontation w/ Russia ready to shut the fuck up yet?" asked Aaron Maté, who has been among the most consistently lucid critics of the Russiagate narrative in the US.

me title=

Are they ready to shut the fuck up? That would be great, but this is just the latest escalation in a steadily escalating new cold war, and these blithering idiots didn't shut the fuck up at any of the other steps toward nuclear holocaust.

They didn't shut the fuck up after Trump's capitulation to the longstanding neoconservative agenda to arm Ukraine against Russia.

They didn't shut the fuck up after Americans killed Russians in Syria as part of their regime change occupation of that country .

They didn't shut the fuck up when this administration adopted a Nuclear Posture Review with greatly increased aggression toward Russia and blurred lines between when nuclear strikes are and are not appropriate.

They didn't shut the fuck up when Trump started sending war ships into the Black Sea "to counter Russia's increased presence there."

They didn't shut the fuck up when this administration forced RT and Sputnik to register as foreign agents.

They didn't shut the fuck up when this administration helped expand NATO with the addition of Montenegro, at the assigning of Russia hawk Kurt Volker as special representative to Ukraine, at the shutting down of a Russian consulate in San Francisco and throwing out Russian diplomats in August of last year, when Trump threw out dozens more diplomats in response to shaky claims about the poisoning of Sergei and Yulia Skripal, or when he implemented aggressive sanctions on Russian oligarchs .

Why would they shut the fuck up now?

As signs point to Mueller's investigation wrapping up in the near future without turning up a single shred of evidence that Trump colluded with the Russian government, it's time for everyone who helped advance this toxic, suicidal anti-Russia narrative to ask themselves one question: was it worth it? Was it worth it to help mount political pressure on a sitting president to continually escalate tensions with a nuclear superpower and loudly screaming that he's a Putin puppet whenever he takes a step toward de-escalation? Was it worth it to help create an atmosphere where cooler heads don't prevail in the one area where it's absolutely essential for everyone's survival that they do? Or is it maybe time to shut the fuck up for a while and rethink your entire worldview?

* * *

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

Bitcoin donations:1Ac7PCQXoQoLA9Sh8fhAgiU3PHA2EX5Zm2

[Oct 23, 2018] Russiagate 2.0 Now with more stupid

Notable quotes:
"... I've come to the realization that the MSM and our government are using a very different definition of "democracy" and "democratic institutions" than the one in the dictionary. Their version of "democracy" is all about national security and financial interests, and have very little to do with elections and popular will. ..."
"... ideas and opinions ..."
"... @The Voice In the Wilderness ..."
"... ideas and opinions ..."
"... @The Voice In the Wilderness ..."
"... @The Voice In the Wilderness ..."
"... @enhydra lutris ..."
"... @enhydra lutris ..."
"... @enhydra lutris ..."
"... @The Liberal Moonbat ..."
"... , surprised the special counsel in April when they actually showed up in court to fight the charges ..."
"... "There is no statute of interfering with an election. There just isn't," said Dubelier, who added that Mueller's office alleged a "made-up crime to fit the facts they have." ..."
Oct 23, 2018 | caucus99percent.com
gjohnsit
We can soon forget Russia's "meddling" in the 2016 election (or lack of meddling ), because the Justice Department is already throwing down indictments for meddling in the 2018 midterm elections.
Russians working for a close ally of President Vladimir V. Putin are engaging in an elaborate campaign of "information warfare" to interfere with the American midterm elections next month, federal prosecutors said on Friday in unsealing charges against a woman whom they labeled the project's "chief accountant."

Information warfare? That sounds serious. So what exactly is her objectives?

But this time, prosecutors said the operatives appeared beholden to no particular candidate. Russia's trolls did not limit themselves to either a liberal or conservative position, according to the complaint. They often wrote from diverging viewpoints on the same issue.

Uh, that's called trolling, and if trolling is against the law then 4Chan should watch out.
It seems that trolling now equals fraud .

It isn't just Russia. China and Iran are meddling as well.

In a joint statement, the Office of the Director of National Intelligence, Justice Department, FBI and Department of Homeland Security said they "do not have any evidence" that foreign countries have disrupted the voting process or changed any tallies , but that the campaigns have spread "disinformation" and "foreign propaganda."

"We are concerned about ongoing campaigns by Russia, China and other foreign actors, including Iran, to undermine confidence in democratic institutions and influence public sentiment and government policies," the statement said. "These activities also may seek to influence voter perceptions and decision making in the 2018 and 2020 U.S. elections."

So how exactly are they defrauding the American public? As for "undermine confidence in democratic institutions", we already know that we are an oligarchy , not a democracy. So I think the burden of evidence is on our government to prove otherwise, not on Russia.

I've come to the realization that the MSM and our government are using a very different definition of "democracy" and "democratic institutions" than the one in the dictionary. Their version of "democracy" is all about national security and financial interests, and have very little to do with elections and popular will.

Leftists aren't cooperating on Russiagate

You would think from the MSM that Russiagate is "liberals" versus Trump, and that everyone on "the left" is OK with this.
But even some in the media have noticed that leftists that don't identify as Democrats are Russiagate skeptics.

Why Are So Many Leftists Skeptical of the Russia Investigation?

Why the left needs to wise up to the growing Trump-Russia scandal

and of course TOP is fully onboard

The Voice In th... on Sat, 10/20/2018 - 4:28pm
So what specifically was illegal?

@gjohnsit
AFAIK, all those facebook posts would be legal if posted by someone in the USA.
Are foreign ideas illegal now? are ideas and opinions illegal?

You would think from the MSM that Russiagate is "liberals" versus Trump, and that everyone on "the left" is OK with this.
But even some in the media have noticed that leftists that don't identify as Democrats are Russiagate skeptics.

Why Are So Many Leftists Skeptical of the Russia Investigation?

Why the left needs to wise up to the growing Trump-Russia scandal

and of course TOP is fully onboard

gjohnsit on Sat, 10/20/2018 - 5:33pm
Consider Russia's "crimes" with RT

@The Voice In the Wilderness
This is supposed to be bad from the official report

RT aired a documentary about the OccupyWall Street movement on 1, 2, and 4 November. RT framed the movement as a fight against "the ruling class" and described the current US political system as corrupt and dominated by corporations.

RT advertising for the documentary featured Occupy movement calls to "take back" the government. The documentary claimed that the US system cannot be changed democratically, but only through "revolution." After the 6 November US presidential election, RT aired a documentary called "Cultures of Protest," about active and often violent political resistance

RT's reports often characterize the United States as a "surveillance state" and allege widespread infringements of civil liberties, police brutality, and drone use

RT has also focused on criticism of the US economic system, US currency policy, alleged Wall Street greed, and the US national debt. Some of RT's hosts have compared the United States to Imperial Rome and have predicted that government corruption and "corporate greed" will lead to US financial collapse

#1 AFAIK, all those facebook posts would be legal if posted by someone in the USA. Are foreign ideas illegal now? are ideas and opinions illegal?

Linda Wood on Sat, 10/20/2018 - 11:19pm
Oh, come on.

@gjohnsit

alleged Wall Street greed

Alledged Wall Street greed?

leveymg on Sat, 10/20/2018 - 5:49pm
This criminalizes a practice that is commonplace and legal

@The Voice In the Wilderness @The Voice In the Wilderness
when carried out by employees of thousands of foreign-owned companies from countries other than Russia.

Basically, this Russian woman is being indicted for doing the books for a Russian entity that incorporated a number of US businesses. These businesses had persons write and post under pen names a number of articles dealing with political subjects. That has been interpreted by the Special Counsel as a conspiracy to violate a federal campaign law that forbids contributions to US election campaigns. That's right, the indictment construes written opinion to be the same as money contributions.

The case would probably be thrown out -- nobody has been prosecuted for this before -- however the woman indicted will never be in court to defend herself, as the prosecutor and FBI know. Mueller is getting desperate to come up with indictments to fill in his jig saw puzzle.

enhydra lutris on Sat, 10/20/2018 - 7:27pm
The supremes, infamusly, ruled that miney is speech. Hence,

@leveymg
speech must be money, n'est ce pas?
/s

leveymg on Sun, 10/21/2018 - 1:09pm
SCOTUS also found in the same case that even foreign corporate

@enhydra lutris @enhydra lutris @enhydra lutris speech is constitutionally protected and can't be limited by campaign finance legislation. Mueller appears to have decided on his own to abrogate the Citizens United decision.

That would be okay, if he applied it to prosecute political mouthpieces such as AIPAC, along with corporate fronts owned by the Saudis, Chinese, British and 100 other countries who similiarly post anonymously.

It's now undeniable: Mueller is the prosecutorial weapon of a very selective political vendetta.

snoopydawg on Sat, 10/20/2018 - 7:51pm
This is from your first link

@gjohnsit

But somewhere on the left, right around the fault line where Barack Obama is deemed to have been a bad president, opinion turns back again toward skepticism.

It gets worse from there. I'm betting that this was written by someone from the Atlantic Council or maybe Friedman's twin brother. This person sure went to a lot of work to deride anyone who doesn't believe in Russia Gate didn't he?

Facebook has almost admitted that they are censoring people and websites because of Russia's ads on it that they say affected the election. BTW. Didn't Obama also use Cambridge Analytics during his campaign and did the same things that Trump did? Pretty sure that he did. But I guess that was different because of reasons. Yep. That's why.

You would think from the MSM that Russiagate is "liberals" versus Trump, and that everyone on "the left" is OK with this. But even some in the media have noticed that leftists that don't identify as Democrats are Russiagate skeptics.

Why Are So Many Leftists Skeptical of the Russia Investigation?

Why the left needs to wise up to the growing Trump-Russia scandal

and of course TOP is fully onboard

snoopydawg on Sat, 10/20/2018 - 5:25pm
For gawd's sake!
We are concerned about ongoing campaigns by Russia, China and other foreign actors, including Iran, to undermine confidence in democratic institutions and influence public sentiment and government policies,

First off the GOP is doing a hell of a job undermining confidence in democratic institutions and the voting process by its gerrymandering and its voter ID policies. Look at what's happening in Georgia (?) where the guy running is in charge of the voting policies and is kicking thousands of people off the voting rolls.

Influence government policies you say? If millions of Americans can't do that then how could a foreign country do it? BTW. This is already happening what with all the lobbyists and super PACs. But sure. Let's blame the 3 countries that they want to war with. Anyone who believes this shit ... well I'll not finish this sentence.

gjohnsit on Sat, 10/20/2018 - 6:00pm
Russiagate is useful for crushing dissent

@snoopydawg
Look at this hit piece on Jill Stein

Months before the 2016 election they were already calling Jill Stein a "Nader spoiler" ( here , here , and here )

Funny how 3rd parties are demonized in this "democracy"

We are concerned about ongoing campaigns by Russia, China and other foreign actors, including Iran, to undermine confidence in democratic institutions and influence public sentiment and government policies,

First off the GOP is doing a hell of a job undermining confidence in democratic institutions and the voting process by its gerrymandering and its voter ID policies. Look at what's happening in Georgia (?) where the guy running is in charge of the voting policies and is kicking thousands of people off the voting rolls.

Influence government policies you say? If millions of Americans can't do that then how could a foreign country do it? BTW. This is already happening what with all the lobbyists and super PACs. But sure. Let's blame the 3 countries that they want to war with. Anyone who believes this shit ... well I'll not finish this sentence.

snoopydawg on Sat, 10/20/2018 - 6:35pm
Ugh!

@gjohnsit

There is so much BS in that article it's hard to choose which one is the worst but I'm going with this one.

But Stein's willingness to praise Russian propaganda outlets and push Kremlin talking points didn't end in Moscow. Indeed, she challenged – and arguably surpassed – Trump in crafting the most Moscow-friendly campaign of 2016.

For instance, Stein made the strange claim multiple times that NATO had "surrounded" Russia with nuclear weapons. As she told The Intercept, "This is the Cuban Missile Crisis in reverse, on steroids – in fact, on crack." (Less than 10 percent of Russia's land border touches any NATO member-states.) She also said last year that NATO is only fighting "enemies we invent to give the weapons industry a reason to sell more stuff."

This is what she actually said about NATO and Russia.

Stein: I think this is an issue where something does need to be said--but it's important to understand where they are coming from. The United States, under Bush 1, had an agreement when Germany joined NATO--Russia agreed with the understanding that NATO would not move one inch to the east. Since then NATO has pursued a policy of basically encircling Russia--including the threat of nukes and drones and so on.

Okay and this one too.

Likewise, Stein claimed that Ukraine's 2014 revolution was, in reality, a "coup" that the U.S. "helped foment." Only two other leaders have described Ukraine's toppling of former president Viktor Yanukovych as a "coup": Putin and Kazakhstani President Nursultan Nazarbayev, whose country remains a security ally of Russia. Stein even spent time last year saying that "Russia used to own Ukraine."

Pretty sure that during Obama's presidency the Ukraine government was overthrown by this country and now we're arming neo Nazis with some very bad weapons.

ThinkProgress says it's being targeted by ad networks for producing 'controversial political content'. I'm thinking it's more because they lie their asses off to people who read its website. This is the most blatant lying I've seen from a website. How many people believed every word written there?

divineorder on Sat, 10/20/2018 - 7:08pm
FWIW Jill Stein out campaigning for Greens

@gjohnsit

Join us on Sunday 10/28 to meet Jill Stein and Alameda/SF County Green candidates: Laura Wells, Saied Karamooz, Aidan Hill and Mike Murphy. to support our candidates. People,... https://t.co/EtWyo6fism

-- Santa Clara Greens (@SCCGreens) October 19, 2018

Deja on Sat, 10/20/2018 - 7:05pm
You left out the D establishment

@snoopydawg

First off the GOP is doing a hell of a job undermining confidence in democratic institutions and the voting process by its gerrymandering and its voter ID policies.

I agree with your whole comment. Just wanted to make sure we don't leave out the monster that is the Dem establishment, aka the other half of the single body that screws us every chance it gets. Supposed differences are only spoken, especially in election years. When it gets down to the meat and potatoes, our representatives are one big symbiotic meal -- the kind that gives you the shits until you're dead.

We are concerned about ongoing campaigns by Russia, China and other foreign actors, including Iran, to undermine confidence in democratic institutions and influence public sentiment and government policies,

First off the GOP is doing a hell of a job undermining confidence in democratic institutions and the voting process by its gerrymandering and its voter ID policies. Look at what's happening in Georgia (?) where the guy running is in charge of the voting policies and is kicking thousands of people off the voting rolls.

Influence government policies you say? If millions of Americans can't do that then how could a foreign country do it? BTW. This is already happening what with all the lobbyists and super PACs. But sure. Let's blame the 3 countries that they want to war with. Anyone who believes this shit ... well I'll not finish this sentence.

snoopydawg on Sat, 10/20/2018 - 7:24pm
Not for that comment

@Deja

The GOP has made it so that over 10% of the population can't vote this year. I think it's in Georgia where thousands are being kicked off the voting rolls almost every day by the dude that is in charge of it and he is also running for an office. They have been gerrymandering the country and other things. Of course the democrats don't seem to be doing much to make it easier for people to vote. But yeah, both parties are just as corrupt.

boriscleto on Sat, 10/20/2018 - 9:36pm
Georgia has purged 340,000

@snoopydawg @snoopydawg

Illinois purged 550,000...Indiana purged 20,000...etc...

snoopydawg on Sat, 10/20/2018 - 10:16pm
Thanks for the numbers and the links

@boriscleto

Isn't it Brian Kemp who is not only running for office, but he is also in a position to purge the voting rolls? This is a huge conflict of interest and some judge should have stopped him from being able to do that. I guess that's what people are suing him for?

Close to 500,000 people were not able to vote in one of the states that Trump won in. Not sure if they were Hillary's or Trump's voters though.

BTW. People are upset with Jill Stein because they think that her votes cost Hillary the election when the libertarian candidate got more votes than Jill did. And yet he's not blamed for her loss. I wonder why that is?

dervish on Sat, 10/20/2018 - 11:46pm
It's because they're sexist. n/t

@snoopydawg

#2.2.1.1

Isn't it Brian Kemp who is not only running for office, but he is also in a position to purge the voting rolls? This is a huge conflict of interest and some judge should have stopped him from being able to do that. I guess that's what people are suing him for?

Close to 500,000 people were not able to vote in one of the states that Trump won in. Not sure if they were Hillary's or Trump's voters though.

BTW. People are upset with Jill Stein because they think that her votes cost Hillary the election when the libertarian candidate got more votes than Jill did. And yet he's not blamed for her loss. I wonder why that is?

lotlizard on Sun, 10/21/2018 - 2:03am
The Dems only kick people off voting rolls in *primaries*

@Deja
That makes it all okay for "lesser of two evils" voters.

#2

First off the GOP is doing a hell of a job undermining confidence in democratic institutions and the voting process by its gerrymandering and its voter ID policies.

I agree with your whole comment. Just wanted to make sure we don't leave out the monster that is the Dem establishment, aka the other half of the single body that screws us every chance it gets. Supposed differences are only spoken, especially in election years. When it gets down to the meat and potatoes, our representatives are one big symbiotic meal -- the kind that gives you the shits until you're dead.

snoopydawg on Sat, 10/20/2018 - 5:34pm
From the ToP link
Robert Mueller's indictment of the Russians who interfered in our election is a milestone in an ongoing investigation. The charges focus on the Russians who used online social networking platforms to divide voters and disrupt the electoral process.

Changed any votes? Party affiliations? Removed people from the voting rolls? Closed down voting precincts? Didn't supply enough voting machines for high voting areas? Nope. Nope. Nope and nope. Just placed a few ads on Fakebook and most of them after the election was over. It's taken Mueller two years to look into this? If he hasn't found any evidence yet then why waste time and money worrying about China and Iran doing anything? I'm thinking that Mueller is just pretending to be investigating, but he's really spending his time golfing or whatever his favorite activities are.

Bisbonian on Sun, 10/21/2018 - 10:20am
No kidding

@snoopydawg , its like a nuclear submarine calling the teapot black.

Robert Mueller's indictment of the Russians who interfered in our election is a milestone in an ongoing investigation. The charges focus on the Russians who used online social networking platforms to divide voters and disrupt the electoral process.

Changed any votes? Party affiliations? Removed people from the voting rolls? Closed down voting precincts? Didn't supply enough voting machines for high voting areas? Nope. Nope. Nope and nope. Just placed a few ads on Fakebook and most of them after the election was over. It's taken Mueller two years to look into this? If he hasn't found any evidence yet then why waste time and money worrying about China and Iran doing anything? I'm thinking that Mueller is just pretending to be investigating, but he's really spending his time golfing or whatever his favorite activities are.

Bollox Ref on Sat, 10/20/2018 - 6:16pm
Remember all those wonderful presents

we were going to receive at Fitzmas? Hoping the Establishment is going to finally reveal its sausage-making, really is a flight of fancy. McSausage for the McResistance. The Public are to be seen at voting stations, and not heard.

divineorder on Sat, 10/20/2018 - 6:28pm
Great essay. Thanks!

Hell I am surprised they even mentioned that first part.

In a joint statement, the Office of the Director of National Intelligence, Justice Department, FBI and Department of Homeland Security said they "do not have any evidence" that foreign countries have disrupted the voting process or changed any tallies,

At any rate cracked up when I read Caitlin on FB this morning:

Politico Report Says Russiagaters Should Prepare To Kiss My Ass

"In a just world, everyone who helped promote this toxic narrative would apologize profusely and spend the rest of their lives being mocked and marginalized." #Mueller #TrumpRussia https://t.co/eN349xhjG3

-- Caitlin Johnstone (@caitoz) October 20, 2018

snoopydawg on Sat, 10/20/2018 - 7:28pm
In case you missed it

@divineorder

We had Great discussion about Caitlin's article. Lots of good comments.

Hell I am surprised they even mentioned that first part.

In a joint statement, the Office of the Director of National Intelligence, Justice Department, FBI and Department of Homeland Security said they "do not have any evidence" that foreign countries have disrupted the voting process or changed any tallies,

At any rate cracked up when I read Caitlin on FB this morning:

Politico Report Says Russiagaters Should Prepare To Kiss My Ass

"In a just world, everyone who helped promote this toxic narrative would apologize profusely and spend the rest of their lives being mocked and marginalized." #Mueller #TrumpRussia https://t.co/eN349xhjG3

-- Caitlin Johnstone (@caitoz) October 20, 2018

MrWebster on Sat, 10/20/2018 - 7:04pm
We are looking at the terminus point of the Russian hysteria.

Actually, I am thinking nuclear war with Russia may be the terminus point, but in terms of propaganda we are seeing it. I have followed the Russia hysteria since 2015 when it was in its infant stage here in the States, but advancing in Europe.

There are still some charges that Russians broke into certain accounts as Microsoft has claimed a few months back, but the claims go no where as they have to admit they had absolutely no proof. And the story fades away until a new charge is made, and those now are hard to make up.

As previous posters before in have commented above, basically the terminus point is ascribing all dissent within the Western powers as Russian created. In this charge it is impossible to to argue as no proof is needed except for the existance of dissent. No more charges which can be proved such as an actual hack. And that dissent can be for or against an issue. All issues lead to Moscow.

The huge censorship of various sites done by Facebook and Twitter begin and are justified by the Russia hysteria and "fan news".

divineorder on Sat, 10/20/2018 - 8:19pm
Aside from in your comment though, plenty wrong with Dems?

@MrWebster @snoopydawg

The long con that is #RussiaGate . https://t.co/HvTHam5Rlb pic.twitter.com/nxlRpYH26b

-- John "Squinty Forehead Man" Graziano (@jvgraz) October 18, 2018

Actually, I am thinking nuclear war with Russia may be the terminus point, but in terms of propaganda we are seeing it. I have followed the Russia hysteria since 2015 when it was in its infant stage here in the States, but advancing in Europe.

There are still some charges that Russians broke into certain accounts as Microsoft has claimed a few months back, but the claims go no where as they have to admit they had absolutely no proof. And the story fades away until a new charge is made, and those now are hard to make up.

As previous posters before in have commented above, basically the terminus point is ascribing all dissent within the Western powers as Russian created. In this charge it is impossible to to argue as no proof is needed except for the existance of dissent. No more charges which can be proved such as an actual hack. And that dissent can be for or against an issue. All issues lead to Moscow.

The huge censorship of various sites done by Facebook and Twitter begin and are justified by the Russia hysteria and "fan news".

snoopydawg on Sat, 10/20/2018 - 10:27pm
And the Vermont electrical grid that Russia hacked into the

@MrWebster

computer that wasn't even hooked up to the internet. Brennan said that Russia tried to meddle in 21?state's voting rolls, but the states said that never happened. But just like people are still saying that all 17 intelligence (3) agencies agree that Russia interfered with the election people still think that the other stuff is true. This is why spreading propaganda is so powerful. The lies are what they remember, not the retractions if they're ever given.

About those FB ads that swayed the election ...

The majority of the Russian ad spend happened AFTER the election. We shared that fact, but very few outlets have covered it because it doesn't align with the main media narrative of Tump and the election. https://t.co/2dL8Kh0hof

-- Rob Goldman (@robjective) February 17, 2018

Actually, I am thinking nuclear war with Russia may be the terminus point, but in terms of propaganda we are seeing it. I have followed the Russia hysteria since 2015 when it was in its infant stage here in the States, but advancing in Europe.

There are still some charges that Russians broke into certain accounts as Microsoft has claimed a few months back, but the claims go no where as they have to admit they had absolutely no proof. And the story fades away until a new charge is made, and those now are hard to make up.

As previous posters before in have commented above, basically the terminus point is ascribing all dissent within the Western powers as Russian created. In this charge it is impossible to to argue as no proof is needed except for the existance of dissent. No more charges which can be proved such as an actual hack. And that dissent can be for or against an issue. All issues lead to Moscow.

The huge censorship of various sites done by Facebook and Twitter begin and are justified by the Russia hysteria and "fan news".

Bisbonian on Sun, 10/21/2018 - 10:25am
by the way

@snoopydawg , there are only sixteen intelligence agencies: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_Intelligence_Community

#6

computer that wasn't even hooked up to the internet. Brennan said that Russia tried to meddle in 21?state's voting rolls, but the states said that never happened. But just like people are still saying that all 17 intelligence (3) agencies agree that Russia interfered with the election people still think that the other stuff is true. This is why spreading propaganda is so powerful. The lies are what they remember, not the retractions if they're ever given.

About those FB ads that swayed the election ...

The majority of the Russian ad spend happened AFTER the election. We shared that fact, but very few outlets have covered it because it doesn't align with the main media narrative of Tump and the election. https://t.co/2dL8Kh0hof

-- Rob Goldman (@robjective) February 17, 2018

The Liberal Moonbat on Sat, 10/20/2018 - 8:38pm
NOT FROM THE ONION - oh, wait, yes it is...wait, what?

Who's on first...?

https://www.theonion.com/mueller-ready-to-deliver-major-parts-of-finding...

Bisbonian on Sun, 10/21/2018 - 10:33am
I like the comment from the Lobster Murderer the best.

@The Liberal Moonbat

Who's on first...?

https://www.theonion.com/mueller-ready-to-deliver-major-parts-of-finding...

snoopydawg on Sat, 10/20/2018 - 11:06pm
Remember the Russian agencies that Mueller charged?

He still doesn't want to give their attorneys the evidence he has against them.

Judge Orders Mueller To Prove Russian Company Meddled In Election

A Washington federal judge on Thursday ordered special counsel Robert Mueller's team to clarify election meddling claims lodged against a Russian company operated by Yevgeny Prigozhin, an ally of Russian President Vladimir Putin, according to Bloomberg.

Concord Management and Consulting, LLC. - one of three businesses indicted by Mueller in February along with 13 individuals for election meddling , surprised the special counsel in April when they actually showed up in court to fight the charges . Mueller's team tried to delay Concord from entering the case, arguing that thee Russian company not been properly served, however Judge Dabney Friedrich denied the request - effectively telling prosecutors 'well, they're here.'

* Concord pleaded not guilty in May. Their attorney, Eric Dubelier - a partner at Reed Smith, has described the election meddling charges as "make believe," arguing on Monday that Mueller's indictment against Concord "doesn't charge a crime."

"There is no statute of interfering with an election. There just isn't," said Dubelier, who added that Mueller's office alleged a "made-up crime to fit the facts they have."

Concord is one of the corporations that Mueller said placed ads on FB to sway people's opinion on Trump and Hillary. The ads that most were placed after the election.

[Oct 22, 2018] Vladimir now realises what so many other unlucky business partners have.....help out the Don to achieve his greater goals and sooner than later you will be rewarded with a swift kick in the [very manly] groin.

Notable quotes:
"... The most distracting game player of all time, Donald Gump, is trying his darndest to weaken the dollar and force lower interest rates by doing everything in his power to destabilise global trade...which of course only serves to strengthen the dollar....because any hint of monetary instability for any reason will always be met with a "flight to safety." Whether the flight is in reality "safe" is beside the point. The flight itself is all that matters. The flight itself is the existential reality. ..."
"... China is onboard out of necessity. Their economy is doldrumic without the US market to sell into. The wealthy Chinese will continue to accept dollar debt notes forever, or so long as they can continue to sell trinkets to USAryans, whichever comes first; Gump's lacklustre trade maneuvres notwithstanding. And the US needs China to keep the consumer culture afloat. This is a pure balancing act but, again, no one of the .002, including those who are of Chinese and Russian descent, will risk any imbalance. ..."
Oct 22, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

donkeytale , Oct 21, 2018 10:15:13 AM | link

< "Money Sings and Bullshiite Clings (to the .998)">

In part one we discovered the global world is not what it appears to be, especially to those of us who believe we have it all figured out from wet nursing on the internets. That is, there is an interconnected globalist world for "them" and a multipolar, disconnected, discognitive nationalist world for the rest of "us." And "we" are further subdivided by race, gender, class, sociopolitical and religious biases as taught to us through "their" media.

The ones who control the information flow of the internets use this control to 1. facilitate world trade 2. create even greater wealth for "them" 3. evade taxation of that wealth 4. make even bigger fools out of the rest of "us" who remain year after livelong year stuck glumly online following our favourite "nation/states" as if they are World Cup contenders. When our favourite team wins, so the delusional daydreaming goes, the .998 win too. Rah-rah, go team!

We determined the reason the dollar's acceptance as the international currency is existential, as it has been since time immemorial. The world's financial oligarchs made that determination postwar and placed their bets....in fiat dollars during the 1970s. Changing the international currency system will require a complete re-wiring of that mindset. And for that to happen Hell will first freeze over. After all, currency is merely a medium of exchange and the controlling mindset belongs to those who control the wealth expressed in that medium. It isn't up for popular vote folks. And those .002 controlling are the most conservative people on earth. They exist in every nation on earth but they aren't playing some World Cup game. No, their game is entirely different from ours. Our game is team sports.

The most distracting game player of all time, Donald Gump, is trying his darndest to weaken the dollar and force lower interest rates by doing everything in his power to destabilise global trade...which of course only serves to strengthen the dollar....because any hint of monetary instability for any reason will always be met with a "flight to safety." Whether the flight is in reality "safe" is beside the point. The flight itself is all that matters. The flight itself is the existential reality.

China is onboard out of necessity. Their economy is doldrumic without the US market to sell into. The wealthy Chinese will continue to accept dollar debt notes forever, or so long as they can continue to sell trinkets to USAryans, whichever comes first; Gump's lacklustre trade maneuvres notwithstanding. And the US needs China to keep the consumer culture afloat. This is a pure balancing act but, again, no one of the .002, including those who are of Chinese and Russian descent, will risk any imbalance.

This is Gump's hole card in his silly game of pocket poker.

And whither Russia?

Vladimir now realises what so many other unlucky business partners have.....help out the Don to achieve his greater goals and sooner than later you will be rewarded with a swift kick in the [very manly] groin. Vlad surely thought Gump owed him, too. Lol.

We all owe them both is closer to the truth.

Jackrabbit , Oct 21, 2018 11:03:05 AM | link

donkeytale: Vladimir now realises what so many other unlucky business partners have

donkey continues to flaunt his foul pro-establishment 'tale' as he slyly asserts the Trump-Putin connection that Mueller has failed to prove.

Caitlin Johnston explains better than I can:

Politico Report Says Russiagaters Should Prepare to Kiss My Ass

"Putin's Puppet" Advances Nuclear Missile Escalations Against Putin .

[Oct 21, 2018] Let's play Global Thermonuclear War

See also Trump To Pull U.S. Out Of 1987 Nuclear Weapons Treaty With Russia ":
"We're not going to let them violate a nuclear agreement," Trump said Saturday after a campaign rally in Elko, Nevada. "We're going to terminate the agreement."
Oct 21, 2018 | www.zerohedge.com

gnjus , 3 hours ago link

War Games (1983)

- Shell me play a game ?

-- Love to. How about Global Thermonuclear War?

- Wouldn't you prefer a nice game of chess?

-- Later. Let's play Global Thermonuclear War.

[Oct 21, 2018] Live Putin attends Valdai Club plenary session

Oct 21, 2018 | www.youtube.com

Russian President Vladimir Putin attends the 15th Annual Meeting of the Valdai Discussion Club in Sochi on Thursday, October 18.

The Valdai Discussion Club, established in 2004, has become an internationally recognised platform for interaction between leading world experts and Russian scholars, politicians and government officials.

[Oct 21, 2018] Putin lays down the law to the Davos crowd at this year's Valdai conference: There is a limit to your provocations and attempts to undermine Russia. So don't cross that line

Notable quotes:
"... The Davos Crowd ..."
"... It's not that Putin's stance was any different than in the past. Russia will strike back at an aggressor under any circumstance where the future of Russia is at stake. It was his assurance that in doing so 1) it would be just and righteous "dying like martyrs" and 2) so swift and brutal the aggressors would "die like dogs" bereft of the chance to ask for salvation. ..."
"... Notice how there have been no attacks or even harsh language coming out of Israel or the U.S. in the past few weeks. The failure of the British/French/Israeli operation to sucker Trump into an invasion of Syria is now complete. ..."
"... Putin wasn't boasting or grandstanding about Russia's hypersonic weapons capability. He told everyone they are deployed. He did this to shut up the U.S. neoconservative chattering class who he rightly says whisper in President Trump's ear that they can win a nuclear conflict with Russia. ..."
"... They are insane. And you have to treat them that way. ..."
Oct 21, 2018 | www.sott.net

Every year Russian President Vladimir Putin speaks at the Valdai Economic Forum. And each year his talk is important. Putin isn't one to mince words on important issues.

With tensions between Russia and the West reaching Cold War levels, Valdai represented the first time we've heard Putin speak in a long-form discussion since Helsinki and the events thereafter - IL-20, Khashoggi, etc.

So, this talk is worth everyone's time. And when I say everyone's I mean every single person who could be affected by the breakdown of the U.S. political system and how that spills over onto Russia's shores.

In other words, pretty much everyone on the planet.

Because what Putin did at Valdai was to lay down the new rules of conduct in geopolitical affairs. He put the U.S. and European oligarchs I call The Davos Crowd on notice.

There is a limit to your provocations and attempts to undermine Russia. So don't cross that line.

Peace Through Strength

The big quote from his talk is the one everyone is focusing on, and rightly so, Russia's policy about using nuclear weapons.

It's not that Putin's stance was any different than in the past. Russia will strike back at an aggressor under any circumstance where the future of Russia is at stake. It was his assurance that in doing so 1) it would be just and righteous "dying like martyrs" and 2) so swift and brutal the aggressors would "die like dogs" bereft of the chance to ask for salvation.


Those are strong words. They are the words of a meek man. And the word meek, as Jordan Peterson reminds us, describes someone who has weapons, knows how to use them and keeps them sheathed until they have no other option.

The reaction from the audience (see video above) was nervous laughter, but I don't think Putin was having one over on anyone.

He was serious. This is the very definition of meek.

It is really no different than the attitude of Secretary of Defense James Mattis who said, "I come in peace. I didn't bring artillery. But I'm pleading with you, with tears in my eyes: If you f$*k with me, I'll kill you all."

Men like this are not to be tested too hard. And Putin's response to the shooting down of the IL-20 plane and its crew was to cross a bunch of diplomatic lines by handing out S-300s to Syria and erecting a de facto no-fly zone over Western Syria and the Eastern Mediterranean.

Notice how there have been no attacks or even harsh language coming out of Israel or the U.S. in the past few weeks. The failure of the British/French/Israeli operation to sucker Trump into an invasion of Syria is now complete.

And I'm convinced that Nikki Haley paid the price.

All of this highlights the major theme that came out of Putin's comments.

Strength through resolve. Resolve comes as a consequence of defending culture.

Putin wasn't boasting or grandstanding about Russia's hypersonic weapons capability. He told everyone they are deployed. He did this to shut up the U.S. neoconservative chattering class who he rightly says whisper in President Trump's ear that they can win a nuclear conflict with Russia.

They are insane. And you have to treat them that way.

Culture First

Putin sees himself, quite rightly, as the custodian of the Russian people and, as such, the Russian state as the reflection of Russian culture. If you are going to have a state and someone is going to be the head of it, this is the attitude that you want from that person.

In his dialogue with an Orthodox priest Putin wholeheartedly agreed with the idea that "the state cannot dictate culture" but rather, at best, be the facilitator of it through its applications of law.

In a back and forth with a very enthusiastic Russian dairy farmer, who was quite proud of his cheese, Putin reminded the man that while he loved sanctions (from European competition) protecting his business today he should not get used to them. They will be removed at some point and the farmer would have to stand on his own wits to survive in the international market.

Putin understands that subsidies breed sloth. That was a message he made loud and clear.

It's why when the sanctions first went into effect in 2014 over the reunification of Crimea and during the Ruble crisis Putin shifted state subsidies away from the petroleum sector which had thrived and gotten soft during years of $100+/bbl oil and shifted that money to agriculture.

The fruits of that successful policy shift he confronted head on at Valdai. Russia's food production across all sectors is flourishing thanks to a cheap ruble, which the U.S. keeps beating down via sanctions, and the Russian state getting out of the way of investment.

At the time he incurred the wrath of Rosneft CEO Igor Sechin and Putin ignored him, much to everyone's surprise. The message was clear, we'll help you out of your current troubles but it's time to do business differently. Because it was Rosneft that needed the biggest bailouts in late 2014/early 2015 having tens of billions in dollar-denominated debt which couldn't be rolled over thanks to the sanctions.

The Limits of Empire

Ultimately, Putin looked resigned, if confused, to the insanity emanating from U.S. policy. But it's obvious to him that Russia cannot get caught up in the tit-for-tat nuisances put up to derail Russia's future.

He mentioned the Empire loses its way because it believed itself invulnerable or as my dad used to say about certain athletes, "He reads his own press clippings too much."

There is a solipsism that infects dominant societies which creates the kind of over-reactions we're witnessing today. Power is slipping away from the U.S. and Trump is both helping the process along while also trying to preserve the core of what's left.

And no interaction during Putin's talk was more indicative of his view of the U.S. empire than his interaction with a Japanese delegate who asked him about signing a peace treaty with Japan.

And Putin's answer was clear. It's Japan's pride and political entanglements that preclude this from happening. Signing the peace treaty is not necessary to solving ownership of the Kuril Islands. Russia and Japan are both diminished by having this obstacle in the way.

The issue can resolve itself after the peace treaty is signed. The current state of things is silly and anachronistic and keep the divide between Russians and Japanese from healing. Create trust through agreement then move forward.

That's what is happening between Russia and Egypt and that is why Putin is winning the diplomatic war.

And it's why Trump is losing the diplomatic war. Putin knows where Trump is. He was there himself seventeen years ago, except an order of magnitude worse. The problems Trump is facing are the same problems Putin faced, corruption, venality, treason all contributing to a collapse in societal and cultural institutions.

Putin knows the U.S. is at a crossroads, and he's made his peace with whatever comes next. The question is have we?

[Oct 21, 2018] The basic plans of nuclear war today are essentially the same as those developed in the 1960s, which is essentially a system of thousands of nuclear weapons aimed at Russian cities and military targets ready to be launched at a moment's notice. The US strategy has always been for a first strike

Oct 21, 2018 | thenewkremlinstooge.wordpress.com

Northern Star October 13, 2018 at 12:34 pm

"The basic plans of nuclear war today are essentially the same as those developed in the 1960s, which is essentially a system of thousands of nuclear weapons aimed at Russian cities and military targets ready to be launched at a moment's notice.
The US strategy has always been for a first strike: not necessarily a surprise attack but not an attack which came "second" in a nuclear war.
Every US president, all the way to Trump, has used the threat of nuclear war as deterrence to their adversaries.
The US threat of nuclear attack has precluded any "effective nonproliferation campaign" among other nation-states which have decided to acquire nuclear weapons themselves.
US nuclear war plans, and the hypothetical and real scenarios under which they unfold, are far more extensive than the public can imagine. Ellsberg writes how the public perception of a "nuclear button" with one finger on it, presumably the President's, is a lie. In fact, there are many fingers on many buttons, to delegate authority to launch nuclear missiles in case the President and the leadership were incapacitated. These same systems exist in Russia, and probably other nuclear-armed powers as well.
The Cuban Missile Crisis was even more dangerous than previously thought, as demonstrated in a highly classified study in 1964 which was never made public until this book.
The strategic nuclear war systems are much more prone to "accidents" and false alarms than previously thought, risking the threat of unauthorized launchings.
The potential risk of nuclear war has been systematically covered up from the public, including the aforementioned graph showing hundreds of millions of deaths, a third of the planet at the time. Ellsberg notes that in 1961 when the document was made, it was two decades before the concept of nuclear winter and nuclear famine were accepted, which meant that in reality most humans would die along with most other large species after a nuclear war."

http://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2018/10/13/doom-o13.html

[Oct 21, 2018] A non-nuclear war between Russia and USA/NATO waged in Western Europe is impossible

Oct 21, 2018 | thenewkremlinstooge.wordpress.com

Northern Star October 20, 2018 at 12:33 pm

Nuclear war between NATO/USA and Russia:
We are no longer in Kansas matter of fact there ain't any Kansas:
https://www.vox.com/future-perfect/2018/10/19/17873822/nuclear-war-weapons-bombs-how-kill

As for a non-nuclear war between Russia and USA/NATO waged in Western Europe.
@PO and Mark and other stooges

I don't see how one is possible. Unless Scotty et al with working teleporter equipment are able to teleport NATO armor and troops into Russia , their columns moving through Belarus ,Ukraine and Poland would be massacred. There wouldn't be much left by the time they got to the Russian frontier. where waiting Russian armor and artillery would have all routes of approach thoroughly zeroed in and sighted. Not to mention waves of Iskander and cruise missile strikes together with attacks from Russian aircraft . The NATO forces would almost certainly not have the crucial element of air superiority thanks to Russian S-400 systems.

https://www.airforce-technology.com/projects/su25/
https://nationalinterest.org/blog/the-buzz/russias-deadly-su-27-the-plane-terrifies-nato-buzzes-its-25642
"The Iskander is not a strategic weapon -- it's a tactical ballistic missile. During combat operations, it would be used to destroy both stationary and moving targets. Targets would range from surface-to-air missile batteries, enemy short-range missiles, airfields, ports, command and communication centers, factories and other hardened targets."
https://nationalinterest.org/blog/buzz/why-russias-iskander-missile-killer-26216

The Russians wouldn't have to actually DO anything on the offensive other than to show up at the signing of the surrender document by Stoltenberg, Merkel ,Morawiecki ,May and Bolton.
(France capitulated within 72 hours of the start of hostilities )
I just don't see a NATO conventional attack on Russia as even remotely feasible.
Just my opinion .

Mark Chapman October 20, 2018 at 12:47 pm
Well, the way it is supposed to work, you don't start at Day One with your forces deep inside enemy territory. You start on your own side, and one attacks the other and each tries to prevent penetration by the other (if you'll forgive such an image) while achieving penetration into enemy territory himself, usually only seizing territory which follow-up forces are available to hold, so as not to be encircled and wiped out. It is demonstrably quite possible for huge amounts of US forces and armor to be assembled in England and the Netherlands and France and so forth, because it has already been done once on that scale. Likewise, Russia would not start out with troops in any of those countries.

Missiles are dandy for wiping out enemy forces at the touch of a button, but you still have to seize that territory, once vacated, and prevent the enemy from simply flowing into the vacuum and re-taking it. That sort of doctrine is pretty much like the US vision of air superiority, where the USAF would simply fly over and bomb the shit out of everything, no troops required. That's how it was supposed to go in Iraq, except it didn't. Fortunately, I guess, because otherwise the phrase "Boots on the ground" might never have been coined, and then what would journalists say when they wanted to appear salty and battle-jaded?

A conventional attack on Russia is not preferred – let's just get that up front. But I don't see any other way for the west to have a war with Russia (and it has run out of ways short of war to assert its control) without it going nuclear. And Washington is not quite that crazy yet. It still wants Europe to be around afterward to be a consumer of American goods and services.

[Oct 21, 2018] Russian Deputy FM Ludicrous 'meddling' charges an excuse for more sanctions and to play 'Russia card' ahead of midterm elections

Oct 21, 2018 | www.sott.net

Washington is concocting ludicrous charges against a Russian national for alleged election meddling merely to find reasons for new sanctions and to play the 'Russia card' ahead of the midterms, a top Kremlin official has warned.

The US is bringing up "ludicrous accusations" with a "laughable 'body of proof'" simply to slap Moscow with a new round of sanctions, Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov said in a statement on Saturday. He added that "certain" US politicians hope to use charges against Russia to gain the upper hand in "interparty brawls" ahead of the midterm elections, slated for November 6.

Ryabkov made his remarks after the US Department of Justice officially leveled charges against Russian national Elena Khusyaynova, who allegedly served as the chief accountant for 'Project Lakhta.' The officials suspect her of handling the funds used to pay online trolls for posting comments to "sow discord in the US political system," and to "undermine faith" in US democracy. These alleged activities were part of what Washington calls Russian strategic efforts to meddle in the 2016 US presidential race and as well as the upcoming midterms.

... ... ...

Russian official Ryabkov dismissed the charges as "flagrant lies" and yet another element of the "shameful slanderous campaign" unleashed by Washington against Moscow.

"The US clearly overestimates its capabilities," the deputy foreign minister said.

"While exhibiting hostility towards Russia and looking down on the whole world, they will only meet tougher pushback."

[Oct 21, 2018] Where is Sergei Skripalt by Rob Slane

Oct 18, 2018 | www.sott.net

The Blogmire
According to an article in The Mail , the mother of Sergei Skripal, Yelena, has not heard from her son since the incident on 4th March , and the last time she heard from her granddaughter, Yulia, was on 24th July:

"Recalling her phone conversation with Yulia, Yelena told the Daily Mirror : 'The last time I ­actually spoke to Yulia was on the 24th of July on my 90th birthday. She rang - it was unexpected but it was so lovely to hear from her. She called and was actually with Sergei. She told me: "I'm with daddy he is beside me but he can't speak as he has a pain in his throat". She said he had been in some pain.'"
This is interesting for a number of reasons.

Firstly, we know that during the conversation on 24th July, according to a number of reports (for example here ), Yulia told her grandmother that the reason Sergei was unable to speak was because his voice was still weak due to a tracheostomy :

"Babushka, happy birthday, everything is fine, everything is perfect. I am in London with papa. He can't speak because he's got a tracheostomy, that pipe, which will be taken off in three days. Now when he speaks with that pipe, his voice is first of all very weak and secondly, he makes quite a lot of wheeze. So babushka with your poor hearing you would really struggle to understand him. He'll call after the tracheostomy is off. "
This was almost 3 months ago. So the tracheostomy was preventing Sergei from speaking; but it was coming off in three days; yet nearly 3 months later and still no call from Sergei? Is that not very odd? Indeed, especially given that Yelena states in the interview that she and Sergei used to speak every week .

Secondly, the call on 24th July is itself very odd. Notice that Yulia uses the phrases "everything is fine, everything is perfect." These are basically the same sorts of phrases that she repeated over and over in her call with her cousin Viktoria on 5th April :

"Everything is ok, everything is fine."

"Everything is fine, but we'll see how it goes, we'll decide later. You know what the situation is here. Everything is fine, everything is solvable, everyone is recovering and is alive."

"Everything is ok. He is resting now, having a nap. Everyone's health is fine, there are no irreparable things. I will be discharged soon. Everything is ok."

She seems very keen - some would say overly keen - to emphasise that everything is fine and okay and perfect etc. To me it sounds unnatural and forced. What do you think?

But more than this, imagine yourself in the same situation. Your father is next to you. He can speak, but not very well, and so can't communicate through the phone to his mother. What would you do? Well, I know what I would do. I would relay speech from the one to the other. "He says he's getting better and misses you very much grandma." "She says she loves you, dad." Isn't that what normal people would do in such circumstances?

But instead, Yulia speaks in a way that doesn't fill me with too much certainty that he was actually in the room with her. It's all very medical and somewhat officious. And even if his voice was a bit wheezy and hard to understand, his ears were okay, weren't they? Couldn't Yulia have held the phone to her dad's ear so he could hear his mother speak to him? Again, that would be what a normal person would do in such circumstances, wouldn't it? But of course they don't do normal in SkripalWorld.

Thirdly, we have to reckon with the fact that since that call, in which Yulia indicated that Sergei would call in as little as three days, there has been no communication at all . Not with grandma. Not with Viktoria. Not with anyone (apparently even Mark Urban got the cold shoulder).

Actually, that's not quite the case. We don't really have to reckon with this because the heroic journalism of The Mail gives us the answer. In the same piece that it mentioned a call between Yulia and her grandma, in which Sergei was apparently sat right next to Yulia, we get this:

"Since that solitary phone conversation, she [Yelena] has not heard from her the two targeted relatives as any contact could lead Russian forces to the pair."
Remarkable, isn't it? So according to The Mail , the reason that Sergei Skripal cannot call his mother, is because Russian forces might be able to trace his whereabouts and order a hit on him. Another one, apparently. And yet in the very same piece they report on Yulia Skripal calling her grandmother on 24th July, with Sergei Skripal at her side. See? It's obvious, isn't it?

Not for the first time in this case, I'm left scratching my head and wondering whether the journalists who write this sort of thing believe their readers to be so dim that they won't notice statements in the same article that utterly refute one another, or whether the journalists themselves are so witless that they simply don't realise that they are contradicting themselves in the space of a few sentences. Any thoughts?

The fact is that Yulia has phoned her cousin Viktoria a number of times since the beginning of April, and in most, if not all of those calls, her father was said to be close by. She even did a little film for Reuters in May, with her father apparently in the same compound. Why were these allowed, since according to The Mail , it could have led Russian forces to the pair? Or are we to believe that Russian forces have only just developed the capability to trace phone calls since 24th July? Worse still, have British Security Services forgotten how to prevent phone calls being traced by other intelligence agencies since 24th July, not to mention also losing the ability to stop Russian forces from coming and getting them?

Or is it more likely that The Mail cannot be bothered to ask the obvious questions that stem from their own report. Such as:

1. Why is the apparent victim in this case, Sergei Skripal, who is under the protection of British (and possibly US) intelligence services, unable to phone his mother, whom he used to speak to on a weekly basis?

2. Does this constitute a violation of his human rights?

3. Given that he has had no contact with his mother since 4th March, how can we be sure that he is alive, and if he is, whether he is not being held against his will?

[Oct 20, 2018] I am most encouraged by the apparent Putin's realisation that the First Strike is possible now if not even likely. If the Russians expect an attack they are much less likely to be totally surprised, as usual. In fact, never in history was such attack by the West more likely than now, for various reasons which would take a while to explain.

Highly recommended!
Oct 20, 2018 | www.unz.com

Kiza says: October 20, 2018 at 9:13 am GMT 200 Words

Although it is almost off topic, I did find one point in Putin's Valdai speech quite telling. It was his point about the Russian automated system for detection and tracking of missile launches. Putin tried to boost the credibility of the Russian nuclear deterant by advertising this system for detecting the First Strike launches.

Although I do not believe that this system is as reliable as advertised, I am most encouraged by the apparent Putin's realisation that the First Strike is possible now if not even likely.

If the Russians expect an attack they are much less likely to be totally surprised, as usual. In fact, never in history was such attack by the West more likely than now, for various reasons which would take a while to explain.

I just hope that the Russian office corps is as prepared as Putin is to be productive martyrs (no more Arkhipovs please).

[Oct 20, 2018] Cloak and Dagger by Israel Shamir

Highly recommended!
UK politicians in Skripal story behaved by cheap clowns. Their story with door knob was pathetic. They tried to invent the legend with poisoning on the fly and that shows. There is definitely something else brewing here and Shamir proposed his version with Skripal double dealings or something along those line is quite plausible.
We will never know, but I think British discredited themselves for the whole world in this story. Trump was not better will using this tory to impose additional sanctions on Russia. This is just another proof that he is another neocon who during election campaign like Obama played the role of isolationalist and then appointed Haley to UN and hired Pompeo as his Secretary of state and Bolton as his security advisor -- a typical "bat and switch" operation in US politics.
Notable quotes:
"... Vrublevsky thinks that British intelligence convinced the GRU (probably we should say that GRU is not called GRU anymore but GU, the Chief Directorate of the General Staff, but it hardly matters) that Mr Skripal wanted to return home to Russia. Probably they were told that Mr Skripal intended to bring some valuable dowry with him, including Porton Down data and the secrets of the Golden Rain dossier. It is possible that Skripal had been played, too; perhaps he indeed wanted to go back to Russia, the country he missed badly. ..."
"... As we had learned from videos and stills published by the Brits, the two men had been carefully followed from the beginning to the end. Meanwhile, British intelligence staged a 'poisoning' of Skripal and his daughter, and the two agents quickly returned home. ..."
"... There is not a single man close to Russian intelligence who thinks that Skripal had actually been poisoned by the Russians. First, there was absolutely no reason to do it, and second, if the Russians would poison him, he would stay poisoned, like the Ukrainian Quisling Stepan Bandera was. ..."
"... However, by playing this card, the British secret service convinced the Foreign Office to expel all diplomats who had contacts and connection to the exposed GRU agents. The massive expulsion of 150 diplomats caused serious damage to the Russian secret services. ..."
"... Such a massive operation against Russian agents and their contacts could signal forthcoming war. In normal circumstances, states do not reveal their full knowledge of enemy agents. ..."
"... I do not know what is the truth. At this point I no longer care because we will never know but it will be the British version that will be the most popular. I like most people like good stories. Unfortunately for Russia the Brits have better script writers, director and actors. ..."
Oct 20, 2018 | www.unz.com

... ... ...

Vrublevsky thinks that British intelligence convinced the GRU (probably we should say that GRU is not called GRU anymore but GU, the Chief Directorate of the General Staff, but it hardly matters) that Mr Skripal wanted to return home to Russia. Probably they were told that Mr Skripal intended to bring some valuable dowry with him, including Porton Down data and the secrets of the Golden Rain dossier. It is possible that Skripal had been played, too; perhaps he indeed wanted to go back to Russia, the country he missed badly.

Two GRU agents, supposedly experts on extraction (they allegedly sneaked the Ukrainian president Yanukovych from Ukraine after the coup and saved him from lynching mob) were sent to Salisbury to test the ground and make preparations for Skripal's return. As we had learned from videos and stills published by the Brits, the two men had been carefully followed from the beginning to the end. Meanwhile, British intelligence staged a 'poisoning' of Skripal and his daughter, and the two agents quickly returned home.

There is not a single man close to Russian intelligence who thinks that Skripal had actually been poisoned by the Russians. First, there was absolutely no reason to do it, and second, if the Russians would poison him, he would stay poisoned, like the Ukrainian Quisling Stepan Bandera was.

However, by playing this card, the British secret service convinced the Foreign Office to expel all diplomats who had contacts and connection to the exposed GRU agents. The massive expulsion of 150 diplomats caused serious damage to the Russian secret services.

Still, the Russians had no clue how the West had learned identities of so many diplomats connected to GRU. They suspected that there was a mole, and a turncoat who delivered the stuff to the enemy.

That is why Vladimir Putin decided to dare them. As he knew that the two men identified by the British service had no connection to the alleged poisoning, he asked them to appear on the RT in an interview with Ms Simonyan. By acting as village hicks, they were supposed to provoke the enemy to disclose its source. The result was unexpected: instead of revealing the name of a turncoat, the Belling Cat, a site used by the Western Secret Services for intentional leaks, explained how the men were traced by using the stolen databases. Putin's plan misfired.

The Russian secret service is not dead. Intelligence services do suffer from enemy action from time to time: the Cambridge Five infiltrated the upper reaches of the MI-5 and delivered state secrets to Moscow for a long time, but the Intelligence Service survived. Le Carre's novels were based on such a defeat of the intelligence. However they have a way to recover. Identity of their top agents remain secret, and they are concealed from the enemy's eyes.

But in order to function properly, the Russians will have to clean their stables, remove their databases from the market place and keep its citizenry reasonably safe. Lax, and not-up-to-date agents do not apparently understand the degree the internet is being watched. Considering it should have been done twenty years ago, and meanwhile a new generation of Russians has came of age, perfectly prepared to sell whatever they can for cash, it is a formidable task.

There is an additional reason to worry. Such a massive operation against Russian agents and their contacts could signal forthcoming war. In normal circumstances, states do not reveal their full knowledge of enemy agents. It made president Putin worry; and he said this week: we'll go to heaven as martyrs, the attackers will die as sinners. In face of multiple and recent threats, this end of the world is quite possible.


utu , says: October 20, 2018 at 4:23 am GMT

Great story. If told many people would believe it. But now it is kind of late. So why it wasn't told within few days or weeks of Skripal affair? Why it is the British media that has initiative and Russian media is reactive and defensive? The story that Skripal wanted to return and that two agents were lured in there should have been told right away and that it turned out be MI5 provocation should have been insinuated. And the two agents should have been interviewed on Russian media. Instead we get defensive inept and indolent Russian reactions.

I do not know what is the truth. At this point I no longer care because we will never know but it will be the British version that will be the most popular. I like most people like good stories. Unfortunately for Russia the Brits have better script writers, director and actors.

jilles dykstra , says: October 20, 2018 at 7:25 am GMT
@utu " Instead we get defensive inept and indolent Russian reactions."
The reaction 'if we want to kill somebody that somebody does not survive' I cannot see as inept and indolent.
Malaysian Truther , says: October 20, 2018 at 8:24 am GMT
Excellent piece by Israel Shamir which I think gives the correct explanation of the Skripal poisoning. This was a classic fishing, 'click bait' operation which produced a very valuable haul for Western Intelligence. The only question is whether Skripal cooperated with it – which I think he did – not knowing that both he and his daughter were meant to die. Hence Putin's rage against Skripal a few weeks ago ( calling him a scumbag traitor etc, etc) after the Russian operatives were identified because retired agents are supposed to stay retired.

Russia made a very serious mistake with the RT interview with the 2 operatives. Better not to say anything if you can't give the whole story. The GU weren't happy to show their incompetence, but compounded the original mistake with obvious lying. That was a propaganda gift to the Western media and has helped convince original disbelievers of Russian perfidy.

Russia needs to step up its game especially in the media dept.

Tom Welsh , says: October 20, 2018 at 9:38 am GMT
"Unfortunately for Russia the Brits have better script writers, director and actors".

Maybe, if your taste runs to "Dr Who" or "Carry On Spying". That's about the level of the Skripal nonsense.

If it was meant for public consumption, the British government's opinion of the British people is much lower than mine.

jilles dykstra , says: October 20, 2018 at 10:33 am GMT
@Anatoly Karlin " British or American human capital, but there are certainly consummate professionals relative to what passes for today's Russian intelligence services. "

On what this 'certainly' is based, I see no argument whatsoever.
Already a long time ago, I must admit, the CIA director had to admit to senator Moynihan that he had lied about the CIA not laying mines in Havana harbour.
A professional in espionage does not get caught.
Daniel Patrick Moynihan, 'Secrecy', New Haven 1998
Anyone acquinted with Sept 11 understands that the USA's secret army, the CIA, was involved.
Another blunder.
As far as I know British secret services never get caught.
How clever the Russians are, suppose quite clever, I for one do not think that the stupid stories about for example Skripal have any truth in them.
Until now the asserted Russian meddling in USA elections have not been proved.
Do not know of anything credible that Russian intelligence people are said to have done.
But of course Russian intelligence does exist.

Fatima Manoubia , says: October 20, 2018 at 11:18 am GMT
@Anatoly Karlin

"A related problem is that since there is now a free market economy, with many more attractive career options for talented people, the high quality people go to work in other spheres, leaving the intelligence agencies with the dregs;" .

A direct result of erasing ideology so as to erase personality cult towards highly respected people in former USSR .When you have no ideology ( or worst, share ideology with your opponent, i.e free market .) all what you have, from values to secrets, from scientific human capital to secret service officials, are out there in the global market for possible selling to the best postor .this is the principle of capitalism .. after all, it is said, almost everybody has a price .The challenge is finding out where that little bunch who have not are ..Obviously, in this scenario, the one who has the printing machine has a "little" advantage How to overcome this would be part of "what is to be done" ..

Ilyana_Rozumova , says: October 20, 2018 at 12:07 pm GMT
If the Russians wanted to kill them they would be dead. Period. It is all FN hoax.
The latest English came up with was that poison was smeared on the door handle and that both touched the door handle. Give me a break. Such a idiocy. Just imagine the exit procedure where both are touching the door knob.
And than both Russians went to garbage dump carrying the little bottle and thru it there.
What an exemplary citizen neat behavior by Russians,
All English story is such a stupid idiocy that it turns my stomach.
All we like sheep , says: October 20, 2018 at 12:14 pm GMT

However, the presence of Russian spies in Salisbury can be explained by its nearness to Porton Down, the secret British chemical lab and factory for manufacturing chemical weapons applied by the White Helmets in Syria in their false-flag operation in Douma and other places. It is possible that a resident of Salisbury (Mr Skripal?) had delivered samples from Porton Down to the Russian intelligence agents. This makes much more sense than the dubious story of Russians trying to poison an old ex-spy who did his stretch in a Russian jail.

If Mr. Skripal has been poisoned by the stuff of which he himself took samples in Porton Down, this would run completely parallel to the earlier poisoning of Mr. Alexander Valterovich Litvinenko, who also became ill because of carrying poison (polonium) around.

Eagle Eye , says: October 20, 2018 at 12:54 pm GMT

If [Yulia Skripal] had not had the courage to make this call while slipping the observance of British intelligence, she would probably be dead by now.

Both Skripals are most likely DEAD, murdered by British "intelligence" services.

The formulaic and curiously uninterested treatment of the matter in the British media seems inconsistent with the Skripals still being alive.

The article above suggests that the Skripals were unwitting or witting participants in a sting to expose Russian intelligence agents. More importantly, Sergey Skripal appears to have had a role in the creation of the DNC's "dossier" to undermine the Trump presidencey.

Whatever the background, Sergey Skripal became privy to important secrets that the Brits and their seditious allies in the U.S. Deep State do not want exposed.

macilrae , says: October 20, 2018 at 2:38 pm GMT
In the Skripal case the British have not explained why, after claiming to have found the closest approach to a smoking gun in the form of traces of novichok in that hotel room, the hotel was not then immediately quarantined.

And assuredly, with Putin's name on the line, the Russians have to do a better job if they are to refute the standing accusations – the RT interview was something of a PR disaster.

The Belloncat data, although superficially convincing, could so easily have been faked by anybody with reasonable knowledge of Russian internet infrastructure and some proficiency in Photoshop.

CalDre , says: October 20, 2018 at 3:21 pm GMT
@utu

But now it is kind of late. So why it wasn't told within few days or weeks of Skripal affair?

It's still not being told – believe it or not, Israel Shamir is not Sergei Lavrov. I hypothesized to the same state of affairs in early September re: Skripals.

But I did not know about these massive intelligence security breaches in Russia. Wow, that's huge. Even though it's not clear to me how this indicates Putin's plan misfired. If anything he got exactly what he wanted: confirmation that the "West" had access to the entire passport database. Knowing what your enemy has in intelligence is a huge win, now they can work on correcting it (hard as it may be, it would be impossible without knowing).

CalDre , says: October 20, 2018 at 3:24 pm GMT
@macilrae You are right, it could have been faked, anything can be faked today, even a video of Putin speaking (search for "deep fakes" and watch the video at https://www.wsj.com/articles/deepfake-videos-are-ruining-lives-is-democracy-next-1539595787 ).

But the fact is Russia has not really disputed the results so I am fairly confident that not only was Belling Cat right, but Israel is right, and now we have the situation where Russia knows that Western intelligence has full access to Russia's passport database.

wayfarer , says: October 20, 2018 at 3:55 pm GMT
@Tyrion 2 Had some experiences with Chinese and Mossad spies, not to mention Russian Jewish hard-drug dealers.

Here are a few examples.

There was an AMES postdoc at UCSD, a Chinese applied-math brain who had a 10-plus female handler. She'd stop by occasionally to check up on him. He always get extremely anxious when she was around. Couldn't figure out if it was fear, sexual excitement, or a combination of both.

There was an old Chinese man and his foxy young female protege, who enjoyed filming U.S. military maneuvers along the San Diego coast. I observed their operation for days.

There was a swing-shift cleaning crew in a Southern California high-tech mfg facility that was all Chinese, in an area that typically employed Latin American crews. Its head honcho was a beautiful Chinese lady. They made it their job to sort through trash bins and save papers. The feds busted them.

As far as the Mossad, I spent two years on a rental property in SD county, which was occupied by them as well. Mostly Israeli kids using the property and a local Israeli-owned vegetarian restaurant as their "scorpion den." Got fairly familiar with some of their espionage work and methods.

I don't go looking for this stuff. I'm just able to recognize it. As an empath I can read people, quite well. It's a natural gift.

Can't stomach Israel's insensitive nature. That's why you'll typically find me pointing out their self-serving bullshit.

source: https://themindunleashed.com/2013/10/30-traits-of-empath.html

FB , says: October 20, 2018 at 4:13 pm GMT
This is a pretty good article but also falls on its face at the end

Mr Shamir's 'inside' information confirms my own take on Petrov and Boshirov which I published a few days after that RT interview with Ms Simonyan I wrote this on Col Lang's blog on Sept 14

'Yeah those two 'tourists' do look the part don't they I would say they are probably GRU or something similar but nobody 'poisoned' the Skripals that's total kabuki theater another Potemkin village production from the reality masters

Something is afoot here though perhaps these two were lured to Salisbury as part of a frame up plot, perhaps by Skripal himself or perhaps the Brits caught wind of their plans to visit [on some standard spying mission, certainly not assassination] and put in motion the elaborate hoax

Everybody there protested loudly including Andrey Martyanov [Smoothie] I also added this

' I disagree with everyone here it seems these guys aren't tourists but they also didn't try to kill anyone that's stupid

It's some sort of spy game

Here's one scenario double agent Skripal makes convincing noises about flipping back someone at GRU [or some similar outfit] sends these two to Salisbury to check it out a very stupid move which is why Putin is now miffed enough to display these guys publicly and their field career surely over also a slap in the face to the silly Limeys for playing dirty pool even in the cloak and dagger game there are unwritten rules '

This is now exactly the story that Mr Shamir is presenting here but he is a day late and a dollar short

I also don't agree with his take that this is all somehow a big loss for Russian intel the Brits are the ones who have painted themselves in a corner their Skripal story is a wet paper bag waiting to fall apart the fact that they lured the Russians to Salisbury, under whatever pretext, be it Skripal or Porton Down/white helmets etc was their only small tactical victory because they could then later expose those two after months of Russian denials in order to show the Russians were in fact somehow involved

But that exposure came months later all that time the Russians would have known that Boshirov and Petrov had been captured on candid camera and would have had time to work on their countermove

Mr Shamir writes this like the game is over that is ridiculous the Brits have no way out of the Skripal hoax there was never any poisoning the original diagnosis of the Skripals in the Salisbury hospital was opioid overdose that came out in the first BBC interview with the hospital staff months after the 'poisoning'

It was not until 48 hours after the Skripals were admitted to hospital and the convenient intervention of Porton Down that the medical diagnosis was 'changed' to nerve agent poisoning

BUT this is an unsustainable story that WILL FALL APART the simple reason is medical and chemical fact both nerve agents and agricultural pesticides are based on the exact same chemical compound organophosphates

It just so happens that organophsphate poisoning is 'one of the most common causes of poisoning worldwide '

'There are nearly 3 million poisonings per year resulting in two hundred thousand deaths.'

That is the simple reason why emergency doctors EVERYWHERE are trained to recognize and treat this kind of poisoning especially in rural, agricultural areas like Salisbury

That is why it took months for media to gain access to the medical staff at that hospital the British spooks needed to do a lot of 'persuading' with medical professionals that would have wanted no part in such trickery and fakery

But this is a ticking time bomb that is bound to blow up in the faces of the very stupid Brits

So yes they pulled off a minor coup in luring those two to Salisbury but the game is very very far from over

As for Skripal he is in on it for sure as I speculated in my original comment on the matter..the Russian intel services are perfectly aware of this, yet Mr Shamir's supposedly well connected source has zero knowledge of this which tells me this source is actually a useless clown who 'knows' exactly what an internet commenter [myself] already knew two months ago

PS the fact that the Brits supposedly have all kinds of database info on the Russian intel apparatus and personnel files etc doesn't mean anything the author is a making a big deal out of this, but his story lacks meat on its bones most 'intel' is open source material anyway

As for sensitive stuff that may have been 'sold' by 'corrupt' bureaucrats one must ask if such 'info' is actually real or a clever plant providing fake info is the oldest spy trick in the book and this article simply takes for granted that such a trick would not have been employed why not ?

CalDre , says: October 20, 2018 at 5:30 pm GMT
@FB How would a fake database leak include the real data on the two GRU agents that just happened to be sent to UK? Maybe it was to make the data leak seem real?

In spycraft it is always impossible to know how deep the deception goes. That's why the very article to which you are responding started with:

It is hard to evaluate the exact measure of things in the murky world of spies and counter-spies, but it appears that the Western spies have had extraordinary success in the subterranean battle.

An acknowledgement you stubbornly ignore.

M Edward , says: October 20, 2018 at 6:01 pm GMT
None of this matters.

All governments are corrupt and have no interest in the welfare of the native populations.

All this he said she said crap is irrelevant, in the end we all will end up under a totalitarian police state run out of Tel-Aviv and Jerusalem.

Cyrano , says: October 20, 2018 at 6:06 pm GMT
I think that a clear strategy by the western "intelligence" services is starting to emerge vis-a-vis the Russians. By accusing any Russian that they can get their hands on, of being a spy, they want to scare the ordinary Russians from visiting the west, so afterwards any Russian actually caught traveling to the west can be safely assumed to be a spy – since by the calculations of the clever western intelligence – only someone who is actually a spy while at the same time being Russian, would dare to travel to the west. How smart is that?

Joking aside, it really is becoming unsafe for Russian nationals to travel to the west. Even though the west reserves the generosity of calling somebody equal only for those that are from the 3rd world – Russians clearly don't deserve such generosity.

Despite this, exceptions can be made and some unfortunate Russian soul could be accused of being equal with those highly evolved westerners and against their will can be offered protection from Mother Russia.

Pretty much like it happened to Yulia Skripal. She was only visiting her gastarbeiter father in GB, who apparently expressed desire to return to Russia, against pretty much everybody's wishes, and all of a sudden Yulia Skripal found herself bestowed with the western generosity of being declared equal, and was disappeared from public eye in order to protect her from those with whom she is clearly not equal – the Russians.

Thank God at least MI-6 proved equal to the task and discovered her equalness in a nick of time and saved her. The moral of the story: Only democracy has the power to recognize who is equal and who is not. Then, on the other hand, capitalism can keep acquiring new monikers such as "democracy" – all they want, Russia still has better quality of equality, despite ditching socialism.

FB , says: October 20, 2018 at 6:24 pm GMT
@CalDre Yes I 'stubbornly' refuse to take at face value this silly statement

it appears that the Western spies have had extraordinary success in the subterranean battle.'

Because it's not backed up by anything other than hot air as for that supposed 'data' about Petrov and Boshirov that was put out by Bellingcat

Ie mickey mouse stuff as with everything these clowns do, it is meant only to bamboozle the most utterly stupid bipeds

A very nice clue is the fact that a Russian website called 'The Insider' is Bellingcat's acknowledged partner here

If you read the article in English they claim to have 'dug' up a lot of info from various sources such the central Russian resident database and passenger check in data for their flight to the UK

Big deal that Shamir is building a mountain out of a molehill is more than clear

In fact this entire Shamir tale appears to have one subtle purpose to publicize and glorify the Bellingcat outfit

which irredeemably lost any credibility a few weeks back when illiterate poofter Eliott Higgins refused a debate challenge by the distinguished MIT physicist and former presidential advisor Ted Postol actually calling Postol an 'idiot' a move that astounded even those willing to entertain Higgins on a semi-credible level

peterAUS , says: October 20, 2018 at 6:39 pm GMT
@Anatoly Karlin Be that as it may, the "Western side" had (publicly known) Aldrich, Hanssen and Benghazi fiasco.

Boils down to, from the comment below:

When you have no ideology ( or worst, share ideology with your opponent, i.e free market .) all what you have, from values to secrets, from scientific human capital to secret service officials, are out there in the global market for possible selling to the best postor .this is the principle of capitalism .. after all, it is said, almost everybody has a price..

and

Obviously, in this scenario, the one who has the printing machine has a "little" advantage.

And, on top of it, in West, since the fall of The Wall, we've been having "Cooking the Intelligence to Fit the Political Agenda".

Incompetence vs blatant lying?
What a choice.

Kubarking , says: October 20, 2018 at 6:43 pm GMT
This commenter begs to differ with M. Karlin's assessment (8) of the relative competence of Russian sovok and CIA. "consummate professionals relative to what passes for today's Russian intelligence services"? Mais non.

CIA always gets caught. All they do is step on their crank, again and again. They depend not on professionalism but on what Russ Baker describes as a strange mix of ruthlessness and ineptitude. Both stem from impunity in municipal law.

For example: CIA torture and coercive interference got comprehensively exposed, worldwide, in the '70s. What happened? Don Gregg gave the Church and Pike committees an ultimatum: Back off or it's martial law. CIA got busted again in the '80s for the criminal enterprises under the Iran/Contra rubric. By then CIA had installed Tom Polgar, Former Saigon Station Chief, as chief investigator for the cognizant Senate Select committee, and Polgar assured Gregg that his hearings would not be a repeat of the abortive Pike and Church flaps.

So CIA are clowns. They can afford to be clowns because they know they can get away with it. Getting away with it is their only skill, and the only skill they need.

The persistent category error at this site is failing to realize that CIA is the state. They rule the USA.

[Oct 19, 2018] You'll learn a great many things you didn't know before from Putin and Lavrov interviews. I certainly did!

Oct 19, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

Ross , Oct 18, 2018 6:08:19 PM | link

@ben | Oct 18, 2018 5:09:50 PM | 40

If you are finding your way out of the dark forest of propaganda there are two speeches by Putin that I point people toward. First, at the Munich Security Conference in 2007. Video here : Transcript here

Second, at the UN General Assembly September 2015, Video here : Transcript here .

I fail to see how any rational person could disagree with the sentiments he expresses. Warning! You may become a Putin-bot!

karlof1 , Oct 18, 2018 8:40:07 PM | link

Lots of interviews: Putin, Medvedev, and Lavrov twice. The only two I haven't linked to are Lavrov's --done!

Putin's Valdai Club transcript isn't 100% complete yet, but the summary I linked to earlier @11 has the video. The Medvedev link's @21.

You'll learn a great many things you didn't know before from these interviews. I certainly did!

[Oct 19, 2018] Oh for the day when a western leader could speak with such intellectual rigour, such philosophical integrity and with such basic common sense. Russia has a giant, we have a bunch of pygmies

Notable quotes:
"... Russia does not have the concept of a preventive strike in its doctrine for using nuclear arms. We only consider using it in response. That means that we are prepared to use nuclear weapons only when we have hard facts that a potential aggressor is striking on Russia, on Russian territory with nuclear weapons. ..."
"... They tried to do the same by attacking South Ossetia. As a result of those criminal, basically, criminal actions, Georgia has lost significant territories -- as a result of Saakashvili's actions, this is the result of his work. It would be very sad if today's Ukrainian authorities would follow in his footsteps. ..."
Oct 19, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

karlof1 , Oct 18, 2018 2:41:08 PM | link

CarlD@23--

One al-Masdar News item I tried to link was about Zionist jets testing the outer envelope of Syrian airspace earlier today. Clearly they think the Ukrainian S-300 they trained against differs little from the very upgraded versions employed in Syria, which are much closer to S-400 in most abilities other than missile performance. I wonder if the Zionist pilots will draw straws to see which one of them becomes the sacrificial lamb--perhaps it ought to fall to the top Zionist air force commander.

For all Aussie Barflies, Partisangirl posts an "Honest #australian government ad about anti-encryption laws," in which they are called "Ass Access." Excellent short vid that ought to catch fire before YouTube yanks it.

S , Oct 18, 2018 3:04:23 PM | link

RT has posted the full video of the annual Valdai Club meeting with Putin. This year they've ditched the traditional panel discussion in favor of Putin answering questions solo. For those MoA regulars who don't have the time to watch it, I've transcribed a few of Putin's answers that I found interesting.

Putin on Crimea school shooting

This is most likely a result of globalization, strange as that may sound. On social media, on the internet, we see entire communities created. It all started with the well-known tragic shootings in U.S. high schools, where young people who are mentally unstable create false idols, false heroes for themselves. And that means that all of us, not only in Russia, but globally, we don't react promptly to the changing realities around the Globe, we don't create content that would be helpful and interesting for young people, and so they have to grab this surrogate of heroic images, and that leads to tragedies like this one.

Putin on nuclear retaliation

In our concept of using nuclear weapons there is no such notion as a preventive strike. And I would like to request all those present here and all those who will be reporting on what I'm saying and analyzing every word I say or using what I say for their own narrative, please take note of this fact, that Russia does not have the concept of a preventive strike in its doctrine for using nuclear arms. We only consider using it in response. That means that we are prepared to use nuclear weapons only when we have hard facts that a potential aggressor is striking on Russia, on Russian territory with nuclear weapons.

Now, this is no secret, we have prepared an early warning system, we have created it and we keep improving it. This system analyzes globally, world-wide, where launches are being made, including oceanic surface, they identify where missiles are being launched from, secondly, their trajectory and the point of impact. All this is being identified and analyzed within seconds.

And so only if we identify through that system that missiles are being launched at us, only then will we deliver a retaliatory strike, a strike in response. Only when there are missiles airborne being launched at Russia.

Of course, that would lead to a global disaster, to a nuclear catastrophe, but Russia cannot become its instigator or initiator, because we don't have a preventive strike as part of our military doctrine. Of course, once someone has launched nuclear missiles at us, it would be maybe too late to stop them, but a potential aggressor should know that there would be a retaliation, and we will get to heaven as martyrs, and our enemies will simply simply die as dogs, because they won't even have time to redeem themselves (repent). (nervous laughter in the audience)

Putin on Ukraine

Currently, the Ukrainian regime is not merely deadlocking the situation. There're conducting an anti-state and anti-public policy, the same way it was done by Saakashvili in Georgia. They tried to do the same by attacking South Ossetia. As a result of those criminal, basically, criminal actions, Georgia has lost significant territories -- as a result of Saakashvili's actions, this is the result of his work. It would be very sad if today's Ukrainian authorities would follow in his footsteps.

I hope that that would not be the case. But what has happened over the past time in social sphere, in economics? What's happening there? What we see is de-industrialization of the Ukrainian economy. There's basically no investments coming. They're just talking about investments, but nothing is taking place in reality. How can you work with economy that is always shaken by some kinds of shocks or undermined by domestic political crises? There is also war hysteria. All things have been destroyed. Where is that ship-building industry that Ukraine was proud of? Where's the aircraft-building industry, which was created by the whole Soviet Union throughout decades? What about spaceship-building? It has also been lost. And the same goes for every part of Ukrainian pride of the past. And what's happening is what I have been saying. I'm just saying it outloud here, but I wanted to ask you a rhetorical question. Why did our Western partners need that, especially the previous leadership of European Commission? Why did they have to insist on such a hard choice, hard engagement of Ukraine in the European Association? What did that give to Ukraine? The open market? So they're asking for Ukraine to bring out round timber. But it's not Siberia -- three or four years of work, and they're going to destroy all of the forests. And now Western partners are asking for GMO products in agriculture. Then we will have to close borders, because GMO is prohibited in our country. Now they're going to take the black earth soil out of Ukraine. Therefore, I believe that today's policy of Ukrainian authorities is aimed at what, what are they trading in? They're trading in Russophobia and anti-Russian sentiments, there are no more goods there. And they're being forgiven for everything for that. Because the nightmare of our Western partners is that Russia and Ukraine are cooperating in any way, because they think there will be growing competition in the world as a result of such cooperation. But we don't a claim for that, we just wanted to have normal work. Why did they have to open up Ukrainian markets without giving anything in return? And demanding from the Ukrainian government, constantly, to raise the prices for (natural) gas. They understand that the purchasing power of the population is not so high, they used to gather just peanuts for the (natural) gas industry before (in utility payments), and now they're basically gathering nothing -- all benefits, all pensions are at zero. So we're gonna have to wait for the domestic political cycle to end, and I truly hope that with a new leadership of the country we'll be capable of building at least some kind of relations and agree on something. We are prepared for that and we want that.

Ross , Oct 18, 2018 3:19:17 PM | link
re Putin's comments @29

Oh for the day when a western leader could speak with such intellectual rigour, such philosophical integrity and with such basic common sense. Russia has a giant, we have a bunch of pygmies.

[Oct 19, 2018] Putin's remarks at Valdai Club

Oct 19, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

karlof1 , Oct 18, 2018 12:12:47 PM | link

Recap of Putin's remarks at Valdai Club provided by Sputnik covers lots of ground. I'll post a link to the full transcript when I find it. Yes, he does comment on Khashoggi affair, which I'll post onto that thread. Haven't seen a recap of Lavrov's remarks yet.


karlof1 , Oct 18, 2018 1:35:43 PM | link

It appears that links to al-Masdar News are now being blocked by TypePad where they weren't previously.

Medvedev interview transcript with Euronews TV shows he's learned a few pointers from Putin on not being cowed. He'll represent Russia at the Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM). This Summit, which few have probably heard about, is mainly a talk-shop not a deal-making venue like the G-20, but Medvedev sees it as a useful forum. No, he wasn't asked about Khashoggi, but was queried about Skripal affair.

karlof1 , Oct 18, 2018 2:41:08 PM | link S , Oct 18, 2018 3:04:23 PM | link
RT has posted the full video of the annual Valdai Club meeting with Putin. This year they've ditched the traditional panel discussion in favor of Putin answering questions solo. For those MoA regulars who don't have the time to watch it, I've transcribed a few of Putin's answers that I found interesting.

Putin on Crimea school shooting

This is most likely a result of globalization, strange as that may sound. On social media, on the internet, we see entire communities created. It all started with the well-known tragic shootings in U.S. high schools, where young people who are mentally unstable create false idols, false heroes for themselves. And that means that all of us, not only in Russia, but globally, we don't react promptly to the changing realities around the Globe, we don't create content that would be helpful and interesting for young people, and so they have to grab this surrogate of heroic images, and that leads to tragedies like this one.

Putin on nuclear retaliation

In our concept of using nuclear weapons there is no such notion as a preventive strike. And I would like to request all those present here and all those who will be reporting on what I'm saying and analyzing every word I say or using what I say for their own narrative, please take note of this fact, that Russia does not have the concept of a preventive strike in its doctrine for using nuclear arms. We only consider using it in response. That means that we are prepared to use nuclear weapons only when we have hard facts that a potential aggressor is striking on Russia, on Russian territory with nuclear weapons. Now, this is no secret, we have prepared an early warning system, we have created it and we keep improving it. This system analyzes globally, world-wide, where launches are being made, including oceanic surface, they identify where missiles are being launched from, secondly, their trajectory and the point of impact. All this is being identified and analyzed within seconds. And so only if we identify through that system that missiles are being launched at us, only then will we deliver a retaliatory strike, a strike in response. Only when there are missiles airborne being launched at Russia. Of course, that would lead to a global disaster, to a nuclear catastrophe, but Russia cannot become its instigator or initiator, because we don't have a preventive strike as part of our military doctrine. Of course, once someone has launched nuclear missiles at us, it would be maybe too late to stop them, but a potential aggressor should know that there would be a retaliation, and we will get to heaven as martyrs, and our enemies will simply simply die as dogs, because they won't even have time to redeem themselves (repent). (nervous laughter in the audience)

Putin on Ukraine

Currently, the Ukrainian regime is not merely deadlocking the situation. There're conducting an anti-state and anti-public policy, the same way it was done by Saakashvili in Georgia. They tried to do the same by attacking South Ossetia. As a result of those criminal, basically, criminal actions, Georgia has lost significant territories -- as a result of Saakashvili's actions, this is the result of his work. It would be very sad if today's Ukrainian authorities would follow in his footsteps. I hope that that would not be the case. But what has happened over the past time in social sphere, in economics? What's happening there? What we see is de-industrialization of the Ukrainian economy. There's basically no investments coming. They're just talking about investments, but nothing is taking place in reality. How can you work with economy that is always shaken by some kinds of shocks or undermined by domestic political crises? There is also war hysteria. All things have been destroyed. Where is that ship-building industry that Ukraine was proud of? Where's the aircraft-building industry, which was created by the whole Soviet Union throughout decades? What about spaceship-building? It has also been lost. And the same goes for every part of Ukrainian pride of the past. And what's happening is what I have been saying. I'm just saying it outloud here, but I wanted to ask you a rhetorical question. Why did our Western partners need that, especially the previous leadership of European Commission? Why did they have to insist on such a hard choice, hard engagement of Ukraine in the European Association? What did that give to Ukraine? The open market? So they're asking for Ukraine to bring out round timber. But it's not Siberia -- three or four years of work, and they're going to destroy all of the forests. And now Western partners are asking for GMO products in agriculture. Then we will have to close borders, because GMO is prohibited in our country. Now they're going to take the black earth soil out of Ukraine. Therefore, I believe that today's policy of Ukrainian authorities is aimed at what, what are they trading in? They're trading in Russophobia and anti-Russian sentiments, there are no more goods there. And they're being forgiven for everything for that. Because the nightmare of our Western partners is that Russia and Ukraine are cooperating in any way, because they think there will be growing competition in the world as a result of such cooperation. But we don't a claim for that, we just wanted to have normal work. Why did they have to open up Ukrainian markets without giving anything in return? And demanding from the Ukrainian government, constantly, to raise the prices for (natural) gas. They understand that the purchasing power of the population is not so high, they used to gather just peanuts for the (natural) gas industry before (in utility payments), and now they're basically gathering nothing -- all benefits, all pensions are at zero. So we're gonna have to wait for the domestic political cycle to end, and I truly hope that with a new leadership of the country we'll be capable of building at least some kind of relations and agree on something. We are prepared for that and we want that.

karlof1 , Oct 18, 2018 3:35:12 PM | link
S @29--

Thanks for doing that work! Transcript at Kremlin website's still incomplete, containing probably half of entire program. As usual, much of importance was stated. Putin's matter-of-fact delivery regarding use of nuclear weapons and the nature of those who would launch a first strike was sobering. The question today's reversed: Do Americans love their children too? Unfortunately, given what's happening here domestically, the answer provided by DC Duopoly policy makers is NO, they don't give a damn about their kids or anyone else's!

[Oct 18, 2018] Skripal and Khashoggi West Manufactures Absurd Fantasy to Pin on Russia, Lets Saudi Get Away With Chopping up WaPo Journalist

Oct 18, 2018 | www.strategic-culture.org

Two disappearances, and two very different responses from Western governments, which illustrates their rank hypocrisy.

When former Russian spy Sergei Skripal went missing in England earlier this year, there was almost immediate punitive action by the British government and its NATO allies against Moscow. By contrast, Western governments are straining with restraint towards Saudi Arabia over the more shocking and provable case of murdered journalist Jamal Khashoggi.

The outcry by Western governments and media over the Skripal affair was deafening and resulted in Britain, the US and some 28 other countries expelling dozens of Russian diplomats on the back of unsubstantiated British allegations that the Kremlin tried to assassinate an exiled spy with a deadly nerve agent. The Trump administration has further tightened sanctions citing the Skripal incident.

London's case against Moscow has been marked by wild speculation and ropey innuendo. No verifiable evidence of what actually happened to Sergei Skripal (67) and his daughter Yulia has been presented by the British authorities . Their claim that President Vladimir Putin sanctioned a hit squad armed with nerve poison relies on sheer conjecture.

All we know for sure is that the Skripals have been disappeared from public contact by the British authorities for more than seven months , since the mysterious incident of alleged poisoning in Salisbury on March 4.

Russian authorities and family relatives have been steadfastly refused any contact by London with the Skripal pair, despite more than 60 official requests from Moscow in accordance with international law and in spite of the fact that Yulia is a citizen of the Russian Federation with consular rights.

It is an outrage that based on such thin ice of "evidence", the British have built an edifice of censure against Moscow, rallying an international campaign of further sanctions and diplomatic expulsions.

Now contrast that strenuous reaction, indeed hyper over-reaction, with how Britain, the US, France, Canada and other Western governments are ever-so slowly responding to Saudi Arabia over the Khashoggi case.

After nearly two weeks since Jamal Khashoggi entered the Saudi consulate in Istanbul, Turkey, t he Saudi regime is this week finally admitting he was killed on their premises – albeit, they claim, in a "botched interrogation".

Turkish and American intelligence had earlier claimed that Khashoggi was tortured and murdered on the Saudi premises by a 15-member hit squad sent from Riyadh.

Even more grisly, it is claimed that Khashoggi's body was hacked up with a bone saw by the killers, his remains secreted out of the consulate building in boxes, and flown back to Saudi Arabia on board two private jets connected to the Saudi royal family.

What's more, the Turks and Americans claim that the whole barbaric plot to murder Khashoggi was on the orders of senior Saudi rulers, implicating Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman. The latest twist out of Riyadh, is an attempt to scapegoat "rogue killers" and whitewash the House of Saudi from culpability.

The fact that 59-year-old Khashoggi was a legal US resident and a columnist for the Washington Post has no doubt given his case such prominent coverage in Western news media. Thousands of other victims of Saudi vengeance are routinely ignored in the West.

Nevertheless, despite the horrific and damning case against the Saudi monarchy, the response from the Trump administration, Britain and others has been abject.

President Trump has blustered that there "will be severe consequences" for the Saudi regime if it is proven culpable in the murder of Khashoggi. Trump quickly qualified, however, saying that billion-dollar arms deals with the oil-rich kingdom will not be cancelled. Now Trump appears to be joining in a cover-up by spinning the story that the Khashoggi killing was done by "rogue killers".

Britain, France and Germany this week issued a joint statement calling for "a credible investigation" into the disappearance. But other than "tough-sounding" rhetoric, n one of the European states have indicated any specific sanctions, such as weapons contracts being revoked or diplomatic expulsions.

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said he was "concerned" by the gruesome claims about Khashoggi's killing, but he reiterated that Ottawa would not be scrapping a $15 billion sale of combat vehicles to Riyadh.

The Saudi rulers have even threatened retaliatory measures if sanctions are imposed by Western governments.

Saudi denials of official culpability seem to be a brazen flouting of all reason and circumstantial evidence that Khashoggi was indeed murdered in the consulate building on senior Saudi orders.

This week a glitzy international investor conference in Saudi Arabia is being boycotted by top business figures, including the World Bank chief, Jim Yong Kim, JP Morgan CEO Jamie Dimon and Britain's venture capitalist Richard Branson. Global firms like Ford and Uber have pulled out, as have various media sponsors, such as CNN, the New York Times and Financial Times. Withdrawal from the event was in response to the Khashoggi affair.

A growing bipartisan chorus of US Senators, including Bob Corker, Marco Rubio, Lindsey Graham and Chris Murphy, have called for the cancellation of American arms sales to Saudi Arabia, as well as for an overhaul of the strategic partnership between the two countries.

Still, Trump has rebuffed calls for punitive response. He has said that American jobs and profits depend on the Saudi weapons market. Some 20 per cent of all US arms sales are estimated to go to the House of Saud.

The New York Times this week headlined: "In Trump's Saudi Bargain, the Bottom Line Proudly Stands Out".

The Trump White House will be represented at the investment conference in Saudi Arabia this week – dubbed "Davos in the Desert" by Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin. He said he was attending in spite of the grave allegations against the Saudi rulers.

Surely the point here is the unseemly indulgence by Western governments of Saudi Arabia and its so-called "reforming" Crown Prince. It is remarkable how much credulity Washington, London, Paris, Ottawa and others are affording the Saudi despots who, most likely, have been caught redhanded in a barbarous murder.

Yet, when it comes to Russia and outlandish, unproven claims that the Kremlin carried out a bizarre poison-assassination plot, all these same Western governments abandon all reason and decorum to pile sanctions on Russia based on lurid, hollow speculation. The blatant hypocrisy demolishes any pretense of integrity or principle.

Here is another connection between the Skripal and Khashoggi affairs. The Saudis no doubt took note of the way Britain's rulers have shown absolute disregard and contempt for international law in their de facto abduction of Sergei and Yulia Skripal. If the British can get away with that gross violation, then the Saudis probably thought that nobody would care too much if they disappeared Jamal Khashoggi.

Grotesquely, the way things are shaping up in terms of hypocritical lack of action by the Americans, British and others towards the Saudi despots, the latter might just get away with murder. Not so Russia. The Russians are not allowed to get away with even an absurd fantasy.


Source: Strategic Culture

[Oct 17, 2018] Did Saudis, CIA Fear Khashoggi 9-11 Bombshell-

Oct 17, 2018 | theduran.com

The macabre case of missing journalist Jamal Khashoggi raises the question: did Saudi rulers fear him revealing highly damaging information on their secret dealings? In particular, possible involvement in the 9/11 terror attacks on New York in 2001.

Even more intriguing are US media reports now emerging that American intelligence had snooped on and were aware of Saudi officials making plans to capture Khashoggi prior to his apparent disappearance at the Saudi consulate in Istanbul last week. If the Americans knew the journalist's life was in danger, why didn't they tip him off to avoid his doom?

Jamal Khashoggi (59) had gone rogue, from the Saudi elite's point of view. Formerly a senior editor in Saudi state media and an advisor to the royal court, he was imminently connected and versed in House of Saud affairs. As one commentator cryptically put it: "He knew where all the bodies were buried."

For the past year, Khashoggi went into self-imposed exile, taking up residence in the US, where he began writing opinion columns for the Washington Post.

Khashoggi's articles appeared to be taking on increasingly critical tone against the heir to the Saudi throne, Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman. The 33-year-old Crown Prince, or MbS as he's known, is de facto ruler of the oil-rich kingdom, in place of his aging father, King Salman.

While Western media and several leaders, such as Presidents Trump and Macron, have been indulging MbS as "a reformer", Khashoggi was spoiling this Saudi public relations effort by criticizing the war in Yemen, the blockade on Qatar and the crackdown on Saudi critics back home.

However, what may have caused the Saudi royals more concern was what Khashoggi knew about darker, dirtier matters. And not just the Saudis, but American deep state actors as as well.

He was formerly a media aide to Prince Turki al Faisal, who is an eminence gris figure in Saudi intelligence, with its systematic relations to American and British counterparts. Prince Turki's father, Faisal, was formerly the king of Saudi Arabia until his assassination in 1975 by a family rival. Faisal was a half-brother of the present king, Salman, and therefore Prince Turki is a cousin of the Crown Prince – albeit at 73 more than twice his age.

For nearly 23 years, from 1977 to 2001, Prince Turki was the director of the Mukhabarat, the Saudi state intelligence apparatus. He was instrumental in Saudi, American and British organization of the mujahideen fighters in Afghanistan to combat Soviet forces. Those militants in Afghanistan later evolved into the al Qaeda terror network, which has served as a cat's paw in various US proxy wars across the Middle East, North Africa and Central Asia, including Russia's backyard in the Caucasus.

Ten days before the 9/11 terror attacks on New York City, in which some 3,000 Americans died, Prince Turki retired from his post as head of Saudi intelligence. It was an abrupt departure, well before his tenure was due to expire.

There has previously been speculation in US media that this senior Saudi figure knew in advance that something major was going down on 9/11. At least 15 of the 19 Arabs who allegedly hijacked three commercial airplanes that day were Saudi nationals.

Prince Turki has subsequently been named in a 2002 lawsuit mounted by families of 9/11 victims. There is little suggestion he was wittingly involved in organizing the terror plot. Later public comments indicated that Prince Turki was horrified by the atrocity. But the question is: did he know of the impending incident, and did he alert US intelligence, which then did not take appropriate action to prevent it?

Jamal Khashoggi had long served as a trusted media advisor to Prince Turki, before the latter resigned from public office in 2007. Following 9/11, Turki was the Saudi ambassador to both the US and Britain.

A tentative idea here is that Khashoggi, in his close dealings with Prince Turki over the years, may have gleaned highly sensitive inside information on what actually happened on 9/11. Were the Arab hijackers mere patsies used by the American CIA to facilitate an event which has since been used by American military planners to launch a global "war on terror" as a cover for illegal wars overseas? There is a huge body of evidence that the 9/11 attacks were indeed a "false flag" event orchestrated by the US deep state as a pretext for its imperialist rampages.

The apparent abduction and murder last week of Jamal Khashoggi seems such an astoundingly desperate move by the Saudi rulers. More evidence is emerging from Turkish sources that the journalist was indeed lured to the consulate in Istanbul where he was killed by a 15-member hit squad. Reports are saying that the alleged assassination was ordered at the highest level of the Saudi royal court, which implicates Crown Prince MbS.

Why would the Saudi rulers order such a heinous act, which would inevitably lead to acute political problems, as we are seeing in the fallout from governments and media coverage around the world?

Over the past year, the House of Saud had been appealing to Khashoggi to return to Riyadh and resume his services as a media advisor to the royal court. He declined, fearing that something more sinister was afoot. When Khashoggi turned up in Istanbul to collect a divorce document from the Saudi consulate on September 28, it appears that the House of Saud decided to nab him. He was told to return to the consulate on October 2. On that same day, the 15-member group arrived from Riyadh on two private Gulfstream jets for the mission to kill him.

Official Saudi claims stretch credulity. They say Khashoggi left the consulate building unharmed by a backdoor, although they won't provide CCTV images to prove that. The Turks say their own CCTV facilities monitoring the front and back of the Saudi consulate show that Khashoggi did not leave the premises. The Turks seem confident of their claim he was murdered inside the building, his remains dismembered and removed in diplomatic vehicles. The two private jets left the same day from Istanbul with the 15 Saudis onboard to return to Riyadh, via Cairo and Dubai.

To carry out such a reckless act, the Saudis must have been alarmed by Khashoggi's critical commentaries appearing in the Washington Post. The columns appeared to be delivering more and more damaging insights into the regime under Crown Prince MbS.

The Washington Post this week is reporting that US intelligence sources knew from telecom intercepts that the Saudis were planning to abduct Khashoggi. That implicates the House of Saud in a dastardly premeditated act of murder.

But furthermore this same disclosure could also, unwittingly, implicate US intelligence. If the latter knew of a malicious intent towards Khashoggi, why didn't US agents warn him about going to the Saudi consulate in Istanbul? Surely, he could have obtained the same personal documents from the Saudi embassy in Washington DC, a country where he was residing and would have been safer.

Jamal Khashoggi may have known too many dark secrets about US and Saudi intel collusion, primarily related to the 9/11 terror incidents. And with his increasing volubility as a critical journalist in a prominent American news outlet, it may have been time to silence him. The Saudis as hitmen, the American CIA as facilitators.

[Oct 16, 2018] Defeat in Bavaria delivers knockout punch to Merkel's tenure as Chancellor (Video)

Oct 16, 2018 | theduran.com

The stunning CSU defeat in Bavaria means that the coalition partner in Angela Merkel's government has lost an absolute majority in their worst election results in Bavaria since 1950.

In a preview analysis before the election, Deutsche Welle noted that a CSU collapse could lead to Seehofer's resignation from Merkel's government, and conceivably Söder's exit from the Bavarian state premiership, which would remove two of the chancellor's most outspoken critics from power , and give her room to govern in the calmer, crisis-free manner she is accustomed to.

On the other hand, a heavy loss and big resignations in the CSU might well push a desperate party in a more volatile, abrasive direction at the national level. That would further antagonize the SPD, the center-left junior partners in Merkel's coalition, themselves desperate for a new direction and already impatient with Seehofer's destabilizing antics, and precipitate a break-up of the age-old CDU/CSU alliance, and therefore a break-up of Merkel's grand coalition. In short: Anything could happen after Sunday, up to and including Merkel's fall.

The Financial Times reports that the campaign was dominated by the divisive issue of immigration, in a sign of how the shockwaves from Merkel's disastrous decision to let in more than a million refugees in 2015-16 are continuing to reverberate through German politics and to reshape the party landscape.

The Duran's Alex Christoforou and Editor-in-Chief Alexander Mercouris discuss the stunning Bavarian election defeat of the CSU party, and the message voters sent to Angela Merkel, the last of the Obama 'rat pack' neo-liberal, globalist leaders whose tenure as German Chancellor appears to be coming to an end.

[Oct 14, 2018] I don't think Trump cared much about the Skripal case either. He imposed a few more sanctions under pressure from the chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, GOP Rep. Ed Royce of California.

Notable quotes:
"... Any scenario is possible coming from the Saudis or the Anglo media. The Skripal has been a successful one. ..."
Oct 14, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

dh , Oct 12, 2018 5:02:06 PM | link

@81 I don't think Trump cared much about the Skripal case either.

He imposed a few more sanctions under pressure from the chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, GOP Rep. Ed Royce of California.


Virgile , Oct 12, 2018 5:07:49 PM | link

@71 Activist potatoe

We are in "Pulp Fiction" aren't we? Any scenario is possible coming from the Saudis or the Anglo media. The Skripal has been a successful one.
Thanks for completing the scenario with your own ideas of the beheading of witnesses that you mistakenly attributed to me.

I would suppose that Saudis have something usually convincing to shut off talkative people, like they will shut off Trump or even the Turks: Money

Activist Potato , Oct 12, 2018 6:08:40 PM | link

... ... ...

The Skripal hoax grew legs I never imagined possible. If people did quietly question it, those people were deprived of a public counter-narrative in the mainstream Press to nurture their skepticism. This could cause a dimwit to renounce natural suspicion and a sharpie to know when to shut-up if he/she did not wish to be laughed at or worse.

They have so many of us dangling on a string. Thank b and others for MoA!


Den Lille Abe , Oct 12, 2018 10:10:26 PM | link
Cool down! We had TWO GRU murderers walk into Salisbury, with no CCCTV ecidense yet that they were near Skripal's house, and no evidence from his house , which surely must have under surveillance. Do you believe this? OK you believe the official story too.
And apart from that, Kashroggis probable demise is all cool, as he was a head chopping advocate, a Wahabistst. Fuck him . Wahabists go in Class on camps which has on the entrance "Arbeit mach frei" which of course is a general lie, but the whe get to kill them in a humanely way (see instruction manual from CiA)
Or you just shoot them in the chest, less smatter and more blood. Headshots are messy, stuff everywhere., sometimetimes, if you accidentially hit a weak point in the cranium , you have brains everywhere , dont wan't that.
Den Lille Abe , Oct 13, 2018 8:46:30 AM | link
As another poster commented, something is missing...
It is like a well choreograhped drame, Skripals were the same, this also is tooooo nice fitting together... Hmfr!
Qui bono? Who makes money on this? I certainly cannot answer that, but lets play safe : The Russians did it!
They beamed up Kasshoggi to their base on the dark side of the moon, the re killed him in civilized manner, fucking him to death with nice looking whores and spoonfeeding him Beluga caviar and interjected wit sips of Russian Starka. He was then made to mush and beamed back into the Saudi consulate making a real mess. Now poor headchop promoter is all over the place! He must love that up in his muslum heaven with 72 old hags. There is no martyrdom in being beamed to the moon and put through a garden shredder, that is nothing special.
So now the Saudi's has Khassoggi al over their faces (literally :)) and the Turks eye a new way to betray someone (Putin, wake up!!). Ever since democracy was bestowed on these people, they have made a mess of it.
Back in the day (when I was gung ho Army boy), it was OK for a Turk officer to shoot dead a couple of conscripts a year, no problemo, the sentries with weapons had no live rounds hi-hi. Turkey does not need a hard shove and it will crumble, and the Americans will intervene, unless Russia is first.
This game is about Turkey, and not goat herders in Saudi Sodoma. They have hardly oil left and the plebs are angry.
Robert Snefjella , Oct 13, 2018 8:50:46 AM | link
Trivia?

Jared Kushner's friendship/affair with previously merely progressive war criminal MBS, who has progressed to now also beinted tainted with responsibility for the lurid butchery of an offensive to MBS 'journalist' who was but days from marriage and the arms of his love, does not elevate Kushner's already dubious standing in some circles.

Kushner, he who on one memorable occasion chatted til the early hours of the morning, "cultivating a close friendship", with the mass murdering progressive MBS, who (thus inspired?; coincidentally?) to Trumpian applause arrested and shook down many members of his billionaire-cult family. But is this a busom buddy friendship born of equality, two young men with so much in common?

MBS has been quoted as saying he has "Kushner in my pocket". Hmmm.

And then there's NYT's Tom Friedman's gushing rhapsody in purple over MBS: "... a genuine reformer, mega-popular dude, and an all-around super awesome guy." Friedman's love was stoked over what he presumed was a lamb dinner, but in the light of further developments, we are not so sure....

mali , Oct 13, 2018 9:30:32 AM | link
Trump vows 'severe punishment' if Saudi Arabia is behind killing of WaPo journalist Khashoggi . However, Trump stressed that even if the journalist was killed at the hands of Riyadh, he still wouldn't end the arms deal between the two countries .
Noirette , Oct 13, 2018 9:53:35 AM | link
Reminded me of the Sultan Bin Turki affair.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sultan_bin_Turki_II_bin_Abdulaziz_Al_Saud

He was most critical of the Saudi Royals and ;) 'pro-reform.' He was kidnapped in Geneva, apparently as carried out or 'allowed' for a good part by the Saudi Ambassador.

He was, allegedly, 'rendered' back to KSA, drugged and tortured. Five masked men knocked him unconscious, anesthetized him, taken him to a Boeing 747 waiting at the Geneva airport, and flew him to the Saudi capital Riyadh

http://en.farsnews.com/newstext.aspx?nn=13940427000348

In F, closer to the events: Celui-ci s'éclipse de la pièce et peu après, des hommes armés font irruption, frappent Sultan ben Turki, le menottent, lui font une injection et le transportent inconscient jusqu'à l'aéroport de Cointrin, où il est embarqué à bord d'un Boeing médical arrivé plusieurs jours auparavant et toujours prêt à décoller, selon le récit qu'il en a fait plus tard.

https://www.letemps.ch/monde/ne-prince-saoudien-exile-europe

Prison > house arrest, > once freed - he was allowed to go to Boston for medical treatment - he fled - back to Geneva! - and a court case took place (2016.) Pierre de Preux, a well known lawyer here, represented him. Imho the state prosecutor (= DA) was brave to take on this case. It was nevertheless shelved for lack of evidence.

Killing off critics / potential trouble makers / other / takes different forms in different régimes.

In the US for ex. no big show is made, and the death is classed as suicide, car accident, druggie death, mystery fall / drowning, etc. no matter how weird the circumstances. In other lands, it is deemed necessary to demonstrate the power of the Overlords, who can organise 15 ppl, a stark warning is projected.

Piotr Berman , Oct 13, 2018 10:40:02 AM | link
Posted by: Den Lille Abe | Oct 13, 2018 8:46:30 AM | 118

On one hand, the quantity of black flag incidents is increasing, and that leads to low quality at many occasions. Ukrainians in particular excel in making most laughable incidents and the British seem to be influenced. Babchenko was killed, his murder condemned by Her Majesty Foreign Office and then got resurected. Brits seem to liked that, as exemplified by heroics of Sir Gavin, the Lord Defender of the United Kingdom (England, Wales, Scotland, Island of Man etc. etc.) on the frontline of the Free Ukraine.

On the other hand, were Saudis innocent they should have means of proving it. Consulates have security systems including cameras near the entry. While they are attacked less frequently than convenience stores, they have a better budget for such systems. Thus it should not be hard to show that either (a) Jamal Khashoggi actually did not enter KSA consulate in Istanbul on the day in question or (b) he entered and exited. Barring the use of hitherto unknown types of beam weapons, I would conclude that he entered and did not exit by normal means.

That said, there were no reports on beam weapons capable of transporting material objects. At worst, Russians could focus microwave weapons reducing people inside the consulate to incontinent cricket hearing idiots, enter through the underground and get out carrying whatever they please. KSA could be reluctant to release videos showing their people as they looked like idiots who just pissed into their pants and worse. This is what I can imagine on the basis of stories from American press that include at least two of "Russia, consulate/embassy, microwave weapons", usually all three. If we restrict ourself to more corroborated stories, Russians could drill holes and saturate the air with "military grade fentanyl" and eschew microwaves. But it would be easier if it was done by Turks with the help of Russian experts who botched something like that at least once, so they have data how to drill, spray and calculate the dosage.

Surely, one should not deprecate the ability of Turks to concoct tales. For example, a typical tale from Tales of 1001 Nights features a beautiful Turkish princess that falls from one misfortune to another at the hands of a trio of bad characters: a Jewish merchant, a Christian magician and a Kurdish leader of a band of robbers, only to be eventually rescued by a dashing young Muslim Arab, and we may have such a tale suitable altered for the occasion -- perhaps despicable Kurds will show up later.

But really, offering Starka to a prisoner? Because of long aging time and the demand, it is surprisingly hard to buy, and it is hard to tell if it is popular in Russia at all, Poland and the Baltics have more of Starka tradition.

[Oct 13, 2018] Any sce nario is possible coming from the Saudis or the Anglo media. The Skripal has been a successful one

Notable quotes:
"... Any scenario is possible coming from the Saudis or the Anglo media. The Skripal has been a successful one. ..."
"... The Skripal hoax grew legs I never imagined possible. If people did quietly question it, those people were deprived of a public counter-narrative in the mainstream Press to nurture their skepticism. This could cause a dimwit to renounce natural suspicion and a sharpie to know when to shut-up if he/she did not wish to be laughed at or worse. ..."
"... It is like a well choreograhped drame, Skripals were the same, this also is tooooo nice fitting together... ..."
"... Jared Kushner's friendship/affair with previously merely progressive war criminal MBS, who has progressed to now also beinted tainted with responsibility for the lurid butchery of an offensive to MBS 'journalist' who was but days from marriage and the arms of his love, does not elevate Kushner's already dubious standing in some circles. ..."
"... And then there's NYT's Tom Friedman's gushing rhapsody in purple over MBS: "... a genuine reformer, mega-popular dude, and an all-around super awesome guy." Friedman's love was stoked over what he presumed was a lamb dinner, but in the light of further developments, we are not so sure.... ..."
"... Reminded me of the Sultan Bin Turki affair. ..."
"... He was most critical of the Saudi Royals and ;) 'pro-reform.' He was kidnapped in Geneva, apparently as carried out or 'allowed' for a good part by the Saudi Ambassador. ..."
"... On one hand, the quantity of black flag incidents is increasing, and that leads to low quality at many occasions. Ukrainians in particular excel in making most laughable incidents and the British seem to be influenced. Babchenko was killed, his murder condemned by Her Majesty Foreign Office and then got resurected. ..."
Oct 13, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

Virgile , Oct 12, 2018 5:07:49 PM | link

@71 Activist potatoe

We are in "Pulp Fiction" aren't we? Any scenario is possible coming from the Saudis or the Anglo media. The Skripal has been a successful one.
Thanks for completing the scenario with your own ideas of the beheading of witnesses that you mistakenly attributed to me.

I would suppose that Saudis have something usually convincing to shut off talkative people, like they will shut off Trump or even the Turks: Money

Activist Potato , Oct 12, 2018 6:08:40 PM | link

... ... ...

The Skripal hoax grew legs I never imagined possible. If people did quietly question it, those people were deprived of a public counter-narrative in the mainstream Press to nurture their skepticism. This could cause a dimwit to renounce natural suspicion and a sharpie to know when to shut-up if he/she did not wish to be laughed at or worse.

They have so many of us dangling on a string. Thank b and others for MoA!

Den Lille Abe , Oct 12, 2018 10:10:26 PM | link
Cool down! We had TWO GRU murderers walk into Salisbury, with no CCCTV ecidense yet that they were near Skripal's house, and no evidence from his house , which surely must have under surveillance. Do you believe this? OK you believe the official story too.

And apart from that, Kashroggis probable demise is all cool, as he was a head chopping advocate, a Wahabistst. Fuck him . Wahabists go in Class on camps which has on the entrance "Arbeit mach frei" which of course is a general lie, but the whe get to kill them in a humanely way (see instruction manual from CiA)

Or you just shoot them in the chest, less smatter and more blood. Headshots are messy, stuff everywhere., sometimetimes, if you accidentially hit a weak point in the cranium , you have brains everywhere , dont wan't that.

Den Lille Abe , Oct 13, 2018 8:46:30 AM | link
As another poster commented, something is missing...

It is like a well choreograhped drame, Skripals were the same, this also is tooooo nice fitting together... Hmfr!

Qui bono? Who makes money on this? I certainly cannot answer that, but lets play safe : The Russians did it!

They beamed up Kasshoggi to their base on the dark side of the moon, the re killed him in civilized manner, fucking him to death with nice looking whores and spoonfeeding him Beluga caviar and interjected wit sips of Russian Starka. He was then made to mush and beamed back into the Saudi consulate making a real mess. Now poor headchop promoter is all over the place! He must love that up in his muslum heaven with 72 old hags. There is no martyrdom in being beamed to the moon and put through a garden shredder, that is nothing special.

So now the Saudi's has Khassoggi al over their faces (literally :)) and the Turks eye a new way to betray someone (Putin, wake up!!). Ever since democracy was bestowed on these people, they have made a mess of it.

Back in the day (when I was gung ho Army boy), it was OK for a Turk officer to shoot dead a couple of conscripts a year, no problemo, the sentries with weapons had no live rounds hi-hi. Turkey does not need a hard shove and it will crumble, and the Americans will intervene, unless Russia is first.

This game is about Turkey, and not goat herders in Saudi Sodoma. They have hardly oil left and the plebs are angry.

Robert Snefjella , Oct 13, 2018 8:50:46 AM | link
Trivia?

Jared Kushner's friendship/affair with previously merely progressive war criminal MBS, who has progressed to now also beinted tainted with responsibility for the lurid butchery of an offensive to MBS 'journalist' who was but days from marriage and the arms of his love, does not elevate Kushner's already dubious standing in some circles.

Kushner, he who on one memorable occasion chatted till the early hours of the morning, "cultivating a close friendship", with the mass murdering progressive MBS, who (thus inspired?; coincidentally?) to Trumpian applause arrested and shook down many members of his billionaire-cult family. But is this a busom buddy friendship born of equality, two young men with so much in common?

MBS has been quoted as saying he has "Kushner in my pocket". Hmmm.

And then there's NYT's Tom Friedman's gushing rhapsody in purple over MBS: "... a genuine reformer, mega-popular dude, and an all-around super awesome guy." Friedman's love was stoked over what he presumed was a lamb dinner, but in the light of further developments, we are not so sure....

mali , Oct 13, 2018 9:30:32 AM | link
Trump vows 'severe punishment' if Saudi Arabia is behind killing of WaPo journalist Khashoggi . However, Trump stressed that even if the journalist was killed at the hands of Riyadh, he still wouldn't end the arms deal between the two countries .
Noirette , Oct 13, 2018 9:53:35 AM | link
Reminded me of the Sultan Bin Turki affair.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sultan_bin_Turki_II_bin_Abdulaziz_Al_Saud

He was most critical of the Saudi Royals and ;) 'pro-reform.' He was kidnapped in Geneva, apparently as carried out or 'allowed' for a good part by the Saudi Ambassador.

He was, allegedly, 'rendered' back to KSA, drugged and tortured. Five masked men knocked him unconscious, anesthetized him, taken him to a Boeing 747 waiting at the Geneva airport, and flew him to the Saudi capital Riyadh

http://en.farsnews.com/newstext.aspx?nn=13940427000348

In F, closer to the events: Celui-ci s'éclipse de la pièce et peu après, des hommes armés font irruption, frappent Sultan ben Turki, le menottent, lui font une injection et le transportent inconscient jusqu'à l'aéroport de Cointrin, où il est embarqué à bord d'un Boeing médical arrivé plusieurs jours auparavant et toujours prêt à décoller, selon le récit qu'il en a fait plus tard.

https://www.letemps.ch/monde/ne-prince-saoudien-exile-europe

Prison > house arrest, > once freed - he was allowed to go to Boston for medical treatment - he fled - back to Geneva! - and a court case took place (2016.) Pierre de Preux, a well known lawyer here, represented him. Imho the state prosecutor (= DA) was brave to take on this case. It was nevertheless shelved for lack of evidence.

Killing off critics / potential trouble makers / other / takes different forms in different régimes.

In the US for ex. no big show is made, and the death is classed as suicide, car accident, druggie death, mystery fall / drowning, etc. no matter how weird the circumstances. In other lands, it is deemed necessary to demonstrate the power of the Overlords, who can organise 15 ppl, a stark warning is projected.

Piotr Berman , Oct 13, 2018 10:40:02 AM | link
@Den Lille Abe | Oct 13, 2018 8:46:30 AM | 118

On one hand, the quantity of black flag incidents is increasing, and that leads to low quality at many occasions. Ukrainians in particular excel in making most laughable incidents and the British seem to be influenced. Babchenko was killed, his murder condemned by Her Majesty Foreign Office and then got resurected. Brits seem to liked that, as exemplified by heroics of Sir Gavin, the Lord Defender of the United Kingdom (England, Wales, Scotland, Island of Man etc. etc.) on the frontline of the Free Ukraine.

... ... ..

[Oct 12, 2018] 'Land of censorship home of the fake' Alternative voices on Facebook and Twitter's crackdown

Normal people do not browse Facebook, anyway.
Notable quotes:
"... "misleading users." ..."
"... Journalist Glenn Greenwald hit out at those on the left who cheered Facebook and Twitter's coordinated 'deplatforming' of right-wing conspiracy theorist Alex Jones in August. "Those who demanded Facebook & other Silicon Valley giants censor political content...are finding that content that they themselves support & like end up being repressed," he wrote. "That's what has happened to every censorship advocate in history." ..."
"... "a wider war on dissident narratives in online media." ..."
"... "eyes and ears" ..."
Oct 12, 2018 | www.rt.com

Alternative voices online are incensed after Facebook and Twitter closed down hundreds of political media pages ahead of November's crucial midterm elections. Facebook says they broke its spam rules, they say it's censorship. Some 800 pages spanning the political spectrum, from left-leaning organizations like The Anti Media, to flag-waving opinion sites like Right Wing News and Nation in Distress, were shut down. Other pages banned include those belonging to police brutality watchdog groups Filming Cops and Policing the Police.

Even RT America's Rachel Blevins found her own page banned for posts that were allegedly "misleading users."

Journalist Glenn Greenwald hit out at those on the left who cheered Facebook and Twitter's coordinated 'deplatforming' of right-wing conspiracy theorist Alex Jones in August. "Those who demanded Facebook & other Silicon Valley giants censor political content...are finding that content that they themselves support & like end up being repressed," he wrote. "That's what has happened to every censorship advocate in history."

In America, Conservatives were the first to complain about unfair treatment by left-leaning Silicon Valley tech giants. However, leftist sites have increasingly become targets in what Blumenthal calls "a wider war on dissident narratives in online media." In identifying enemies in this "war," Facebook has partnered up with the Digital Forensics Lab, an offshoot of NATO-sponsored think tank the Atlantic Council. The DFL has promised to be Facebook's "eyes and ears" in the fight against disinformation (read: alternative viewpoints).

[Oct 12, 2018] Southfront's published

Oct 12, 2018 | southfront.org

Posted by: karlof1 | Oct 12, 2018 2:40:46 PM | 45

[Oct 12, 2018] The Shaky Case That Russia Manipulated Social Media to Tip the 2016 Election by Gareth Porter

Russians under each Facebook account
Oct 12, 2018 | original.antiwar.com
adopted false US personas online to get people to attend rallies and conduct other political activities. (An alternative explanation is that IRA is a purely commercial, and not political, operation.)

Whether those efforts even came close to swaying US voters in the 2016 presidential election, as Shane and Mazzetti claimed, is another matter.

Shane and Mazzetti might argue that they are merely citing figures published by the social media giants Facebook and Twitter, but they systematically failed to report the detailed explanations behind the gross figures used in each case, which falsified their significance.

Their most dramatic assertions came in reporting the alleged results of the IRA's efforts on Facebook. "Even by the vertiginous standards of social media," they wrote, "the reach of their effort was impressive: 2,700 fake Facebook accounts, 80,000 posts, many of them elaborate images with catchy slogans, and an eventual audience of 126 million Americans on Facebook alone."

Then, to dramatize that "eventual audience" figure, they observed, "That was not far short of the 137 million people who would vote in the 2016 presidential elections."

But as impressive as these figures may appear at first glance, they don't really indicate an effective attack on the US election process at all. In fact, without deeper inquiry into their meaning, those figures were grossly misleading.

A Theoretical Possibility

What Facebook general counsel Colin Stretch actually said in testimony before the Senate Judiciary Committee last October was quite different from what the Times reporters claimed. "Our best estimate is that approximately 126,000 million people may have been served one of these [IRA-generated] stories at some time during the two year period," Stretch said.

Stretch was expressing a theoretical possibility rather than an established accomplishment. Facebook was saying that it estimated 126 million Facebook members might have gotten at least one story from the IRA –- not over the ten week election period but over 194 weeks during the two years 2015 through 2017. That, figure, in turn, was based on the estimate that 29 million people might have gotten at least one story in their Facebook feed over that same two-year period and on the assumption that they shared it with others at a particular rate.

The first problem with citing those figures as evidence of impact on the 2016 election is that Facebook did not claim that all or even most of those 80,000 IRA posts were election–related. It offered no data on what proportion of the feeds to those 29 million people was, in fact, election-related. But Stretch did testify that IRA content over that two–year period represented just four thousandths (.0004) of the total content of Facebook newsfeeds.

Thus each piece of IRA content in a twitter feed was engulfed in 23,000 pieces of non-IRA content.

That is an extremely important finding, because, as Facebook's Vice President for News Feed, Adam Moseri, acknowledged in 2016 , Facebook subscribers actually read only about 10 percent of the stories Facebook puts in their News Feed every day. The means that very few of the IRA stories that actually make it into a subscriber's news feed on any given day are actually read.

Facebook did conduct research on what it calls "civic engagement" during the election period, and the researchers concluded that the "reach" of the content shared by what they called "fake amplifiers" was "marginal compared to the volume of civic content shared during the US elections." That reach, they said, was "statistically very small" in relation to "overall engagement on political issues."

Shane and Mazzaetti thus failed to report any of the several significant caveats and disclaimers from Facebook itself that make their claim that Russian election propaganda "reached" 126 million Americans extremely misleading.

Tiny IRA Twitter Footprint

Shane and Mazzetti's treatment of the role of Twitter in the alleged Russian involvement in the election focuses on 3,814 Twitter accounts said to be associated with the IRA, which supposedly "interacted with 1.4 million Americans." Although that number looks impressive without any further explanation, more disaggregated data provide a different picture: more than 90 percent of the Tweets from the IRA had nothing to do with the election, and those that did were infinitesimally few in relation to the entire Twitter stream relating to the 2016 campaign.

Twitter's own figures show that those 3,814 IRA-linked accounts posted 175,993 Tweets during the ten weeks of the election campaign, but that only 8.4 percent of the total number of IRA-generated Tweets were election-related.

Twitter estimated that those 15,000 IRA-related tweets represented less than .00008 (eight one hundred thousandths) of the estimated total of 189 million tweets that Twitter identified as election-related during the ten-week election campaign. Twitter has offered no estimate of how many Tweets, on average were in the daily twitter stream of those people notified by Twitter and what percentage of them were election-related Tweets from the IRA. Any such notification would certainly show, however, that the percentage was extremely small and that very few would have been read.

Research by Darren Linvill and Patrick Warren of Clemson University on 2.9 million Tweets from those same 3,814 IRA accounts over a two year period has revealed that nearly a third of its Tweets had normal commercial content or were not in English; another third were straight local newsfeeds from US localities or mostly non-political "hashtag games", and the final third were on "right" or "left" populist themes in US society.

Furthermore, there were more IRA Tweets on political themes in 2017 than there had been during the election year. As a graph of those tweets over time shows, those "right" and "left" Tweets peaked not during the election but during the summer of 2017.

The Mysterious 50,000 'Russia-Linked' Accounts

Twitter also determined that another 50,258 automated Twitter accounts that tweeted about the election were associated with Russia and that they have generated a total to 2.1 million Tweets – about one percent of the total number election-related tweets of during the period.

But despite media coverage of those Tweets suggesting that they originated with the Russian government, the evidence doesn't indicate that at all. Twitter's Sean Edgett told the Senate Intelligence Committee last November that Twitter had used an "expansive approach to defining what qualifies as a Russian-linked account". Twitter considered an account to be "Russian" if any of the following was found: it was created in Russia or if the user registered the account with a Russian phone carrier or a Russian email; the user's display name contains Cyrillic characters; the user frequently Tweets in Russian, or the user has logged in from any Russian IP address.

Edgett admitted in a statement in January, however, that there were limitations on its ability to determine the origins of the users of these accounts. And a past log-in from a Russian IP address does not mean the Russian government controls an account. Automated accounts have bought and sold for many years on a huge market, some of which is located in Russia. As Scott Shane reported in September 2017, a Russian website BuyAccs.com offers tens and even hundreds of thousands of Twitter accounts for bulk purchase.

Twitter also observed that "a high concentration of automated engagement and content originated from data centers and users accessing Twitter via Virtual Private Networks ("VPNs") and proxy servers," which served to mask the geographical origin of the tweet. And that practice was not limited to the 50,000 accounts in question. Twitter found that locations of nearly 12 percent of the Tweets generated during the election period were masked because of use of such networks and servers.

Twitter identified over half of the Tweets, coming from about half of the 50,000 accounts as being automated, and the data reported on activity on those 50,000 accounts in question indicates that both the Trump and Clinton campaigns were using the automated accounts in question. The roughly 23,000 automated accounts were the source of 1.34 million Tweets, which represented .63 percent of the total election-related Tweets. But the entire 50,000 accounts produced about 1 percent of total election-related tweets.

Hillary Clinton got .55 percent of her total retweets from the 50,000 automated accounts Twitter calls "Russia-linked" and .62 percent of her "likes" from them. Those percentages are close to the percentage of total election-related Tweets generated by those same automated accounts. That suggests that her campaign had roughly the same proportion of automated accounts among the 50,000 accounts as it did in the rest of the accounts during the campaign.

Trump, on the other hand, got 1.8 percent of this total "likes" and 4.25 percent of his total Retweets for the whole election period from those accounts, indicating his campaign was more invested in the automated accounts that were the source of two-thirds of the Tweets in those 50,000 "Russia-linked" accounts.

The idea promoted by Shane and Mazzetti that the Russian government seriously threatened to determine the winner of the election does not hold up when the larger social media context is examined more closely. Contrary to what the Times' reporters and the corporate media in general would have us believe, the Russian private sector effort accounted for a minuscule proportion of the election-related output of social media. The threat to the US political system in general and its electoral system in particular is not Russian influence; it's in part a mainstream news media that has lost perspective on the truth.

Gareth Porter, an investigative historian and journalist specializing in US national security policy, received the UK-based Gellhorn Prize for journalism for 2011 for articles on the U.S. war in Afghanistan. His new book is Manufactured Crisis: the Untold Story of the Iran Nuclear Scare . He can be contacted at porter.gareth50@gmail.com . Reprinted from Consortium News with the author's permission.

[Oct 12, 2018] Sic Semper Tyrannis RUSSIAN FEDERATION SITREP 11 OCTOBER 2018 by Patrick Armstrong

Notable quotes:
"... its russia and chinas job to assist america to reach the acceptance stage as peacefully as possible while allowing as much face saving as possible for washington and their ruling class. at the end of the day everyone wants to go on living. the next 15 years ought to be quite exciting. ..."
Oct 12, 2018 | turcopolier.typepad.com

SKRIPALMANIA. Has now been completely outsourced to Bellingcat . Which tells the discerning observer two things: 1) there is no evidence 2) the truth is probably the opposite. (And for those of you who take Bellingcat seriously: become discerning .)


Araminta Smade , 16 hours ago

SKRIPALMANIA. Has now been completely outsourced to Bellingcat. Which tells the discerning observer two things: 1) there is no evidence 2) the truth is probably the opposite. (And for those of you who take Bellingcat seriously: become discerning.)

To those of you who are like myself deeply sceptical about this story can I recommend this article in the UK Independent newspaper.

We should be asking for answers about the Skripals and Bellingcat – and not just from Russia. Mary Dejevsky.

https://www.independent.co....

Snow Flake -> Araminta Smade , 5 hours ago
It has transatlantic connections.

Higgins has entered the polite academic space both in the Uk and the US in lightening speed. And as a result of that got special attention by media. Not only that, but in the US he additionally joined an important cog of the EU-US think thank world. The Atlantic Council made him a non-resident "Senior Fellow". As expert in digital forensics, open source and the future of Europe.

When the huge open source "gold rush" caught my attention in the early post 9/11 years, all the excited members I witnessed more close up were quite system conform. That was after the Iraq war intelligence expertise. That's why it made me wonder. Thus,the story of Eliot Higgins seems no outlier from my rather limited perspective.

And yes, I am with Paul Robinson, who a while ago noticed the same contradictions as Mary Dejevsky. On one hand the Russians seem to be omnipotent, on the other they have all these bungling secret service members that are so easy to out. But notice not by a bunch of laymen, but by a crowd led by a serious senior expert and academic. ;)

Peddling Certainty:

https://irrussianality.word...

Snow Flake -> Araminta Smade , 5 hours ago
It has transatlantic connections.

Higgins has entered the polite academic space both in the Uk and the US in lightening speed. And as a result of that got special attention by media. Not only that, but in the US he additionally joined an important cog of the EU-US think thank world. The Atlantic Council made him a non-resident "Senior Fellow". As expert in digital forensics, open source and the future of Europe.

When the huge open source "gold rush" caught my attention in the early post 9/11 years, all the excited members I witnessed more close up were quite system conform. That was after the Iraq war intelligence expertise. That's why it made me wonder. Thus,the story of Eliot Higgins seems no outlier from my rather limited perspective.

And yes, I am with Paul Robinson, who a while ago noticed the same contradictions as Mary Dejevsky. On one hand the Russians seem to be omnipotent, on the other they have all these bungling secret service members that are so easy to out. But notice not by a bunch of laymen, but by a crowd led by a serious senior expert and academic. ;)

Peddling Certainty:

https://irrussianality.word...

FB -> Snow Flake , an hour ago
I think some people here are actually taking Eliott Higgins far too seriously...he is still an uneducated underwear salesman...and acts like it...case in point his recent twitter outburst at Ted Postol, calling him an 'idiot'...that just shows what a substance free clown this guy is...

I briefly looked at that blog article linked to by snowflake and it is basically verbal diarrhea...bottom line is that Higgins and that Bellincat 'outfit' are best simply ignored...not worth the time or mental bandwidth to even think about...

smoothieX12 . -> Snow Flake , 2 hours ago
Atlantic Council has a very great Ph.D consultant, and strategists' strategist and tacticians' tactician, Dr. Blank. He, of all places, taught in US Army War College. He taught, of course, about Russia, since he has Ph.D in Soviet/Russian "history" or whatever passes as such in US "Russian Studies" field.

http://www.wikistrat.com/ex...

His strategic concepts are so devoid of even basic high school level knowledge of Russia (and her geography, BTW) that one is forced to ask how is it even possible to have this kind of "experts"? Among many outlandish ideas Dr. Blank proposed in his academic career dedicated to fighting evil Russians was to send US Navy to the Azov Sea to demonstrate the US Naval might.

http://www.atlanticcouncil....

This was one of the most profound facepalm moments of my life--I mean it. Not only Dr. Blank has no clue about Russia, he also has no clue about US Navy. Yet, he is an expert, alright.

TTG , 19 hours ago
You left the best part out of that State Department policy statement. He announced a new position, the Senior Advisor for Russian Malign Activities and Trends or SARMAT for short. That's straight out of the axis of evil mindset. How can we have a sober and productive policy towards Russia with crap like this?
PRC90 -> TTG , 8 hours ago
I thought that was from Duffleblog but you're right: https://www.state.gov/p/eur...
Third para from the bottom. Part of that $380 million must be Bellingcat's budget.
Timothy Hagios -> TTG , 9 hours ago
I can't wait to see what awful person is selected for this role. Also, Sarmat is also the name for Russia's newest ICBM, which makes one wonder what was on the back of their minds when they came up with this one.
ted richard , 4 hours ago
washingtons foreign policy visa vie russia and china is as yet unable to reach the psychological stage of sublimation. frustrated, angry and demoralised that they can not militarily atttack russia once and for all putting paid ....to who is the biggest dog in the yard...... american elites lash out ineffectually using various media, economic and financial games to assuage their inability to get their way.

each iteration of this plan becomes weaker and less effective than the previous one leading to more rage at being thwarted.

where the current crop of american ruling elites are concerned we are talking about 2 factors.... a profound lack of a really good cosmopolitan education and a near total lack of appreciation for how weak the american industrial base has become the past 30 years (you can not intimidate powerful nations if your military technology is 1 or more generations BEHIND)

an apt understanding of washingtons dilemma is best grasped reading the kubler-ross stages of grieving over a dying loved one. in this case the dying loved one is american exceptionalism and the l godlike power that goes with it for the 1/100 or 1%.

its russia and chinas job to assist america to reach the acceptance stage as peacefully as possible while allowing as much face saving as possible for washington and their ruling class. at the end of the day everyone wants to go on living. the next 15 years ought to be quite exciting.

[Oct 12, 2018] Christ was crucified because of the Russians. GRU and Putin conspired to poison him at the Last Supper. The actual death on the Cross was staged to cover the poisoning.

Notable quotes:
"... Bellingcat is due with the official report shortly. Stay tuned. ..."
Oct 12, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

Red Ryder , Oct 11, 2018 5:13:17 PM | link

Christ was crucified because of the Russians. GRU and Putin conspired to poison him at the Last Supper. The actual death on the Cross was staged to cover the poisoning.

"Highly Likely" Iran had a hand in it also. Judas was a 'Persian', of course, and would have been a Shiite if he hadn't been suicidal and lived another 800 years or so.

Bellingcat is due with the official report shortly. Stay tuned.

[Oct 12, 2018] The Boy Who Cried "Bear!!": a Norwegian Folk Tale

Notable quotes:
"... Remember that back in 2002 it was discovered that the US bugged the 767 of then Chinese Premier Jian Xiao-Ping. ..."
Oct 12, 2018 |