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

Anti-Russian hysteria in connection with DNC leak and emailgate

  Who are those "experts" who tell us those were Russians? Are those the same "experts" who found weapons of mass destruction in Iraq? Or claim that Hillary bathroom email server was not breached?

“The same people on the Clinton team who made enormous efforts to claim her private email server—which operated unencrypted over the Internet for three months, including during trips to China and Russia, and which contained top-secret national-security data—was not hacked by the Russians now are certain that the DNC server was hacked by the Russians” http://www.theamericanconservative.com/articles/unpacking-the-dnc-emails/

News Neoliberal Brainwashing -- Journalism in the Service of the Powerful Few Recommended Links Fake News scare and US NeoMcCartyism Neocon foreign policy is a disaster for the USA Sanctions against Russia Demonization of Putin
Putin-did-it fiasco Do the US intelligence agencies attempt to influence the US Presidential elections ? Hillary Clinton email scandal Color revolutions "Fuck the EU": State Department neocons show EU its real place Israel lobby Pathological Russophobia of the US elite
Media-Military-Industrial Complex Corporatist Corruption: Systemic Fraud under Clinton-Bush-Obama Regime Conversion of Democratic Party into War Party and Hillary Clinton policy toward Russia Edward Lucas as agent provocateur US and British media are servants of security apparatus  Hillary as a pathological liar Bill Clinton
Clinton Cash The Untold Story of How and Why Foreign Governments and Businesses Helped Make Bill and Hillary Rich Crisis of Character A White House Secret Service Officer Discloses His Firsthand Experience with Hillary, Bill, and How They O Hillary the Other Woman Dolly Kyle Amazon.com Books The Clintons' War on Women Roger Stone, Robert Morrow Amazon.com Books Bill Clinton New Gilded Age President Patrick J. Maney 9780700621941 Amazon.com Books The Secret Life of Bill Clinton The Unreported Stories Ambrose Evans-Pritchard  Amazon.com Books Partners in Crime The Clintons' Scheme to Monetize the White House for Personal Profit Jerome Corsi  Amazon
Neoliberalism as a New Form of Corporatism Inside "democracy promotion" hypocrisy fair Female Sociopaths American Exceptionalism Deception as an art form    
Diplomacy by deception Corruption of Regulators The Deep State Machiavellism Noble Lie Hillary role in cover up of Bill Clinton sexapades Nation under attack meme
Neocolonialism as Financial Imperialism  Neocons Credibility Scam Leo Strauss and the Neocons Predator state The Iron Law of Oligarchy Elite [Dominance] Theory And the Revolt of the Elite  

Introduction

These people have no shame. Vote Trump!

USMarines, Guardian Jun 25, 2016

 

Seems Putin controls Trump and Clinton! The man is amazing.

Only Jedi Knights can stop him.

“Russia, if you’re listening, I hope you’re able to find the 30,000 emails that are missing,”
 Donald J. Trump said, referring to messages deemed personal by Hillary Clinton
 and deleted from her private email server.

 

Clinton campaign is trying to hide their very serious domestic allegation tried to play "Russians are coming" trick...   In reality the real issue with DNS leaks in the fact that Sanders campaign was sabotaged by crooks in DNC. 

All those presstitutes who wipe up anti-Russian hysteria should ask themselves a simple question. Do they have any moral right to ask question about the legitimacy of  foreign interference if this interference is the cornerstone of the US foreign policy. As in "color revolutions" and similar subversive actions against "not neoliberal enough" government of countries with natural resources or of some geopolitical value.  Also it is not clear why Russia would prefer Trump to Hillary. Here is one post that addresses this issues (Economist's View What’s Behind a Rise in Ethnic Nationalism Maybe the Economy, Oct 14, 2016):

likbez -> pgl... , Friday, October 14, 2016 at 07:43 PM
Paradoxically Pravda in old times did have real insights into the US political system and for this reason was widely read by specialists. Especially materials published by the Institute of the USA and Canada -- a powerful Russian think tank somewhat similar to the Council on Foreign Relations.

As for your remark I think for many people in the USA Russophobia is just displaced Anti-Semitism.

JohnH remark is actually very apt and you should not "misunderestimate" the level of understanding of the US political system by Russians. They did learn a lot about machinations of the neoliberal foreign policy, especially about so called "color revolutions." Hillary&Obama has had a bloody nose when they tried to stage a "color revolution" in 2011-2012 in Russia (so called "white revolution). A typical US citizen probably never heard about it or heard only about "Pussy riot", Navalny and couple of other minor figures. At the end poor ambassador Michael McFaul was recalled. NED was expelled. Of course Russia is just a pale shadow of the USSR power-wise, so Obama later put her on sanctions using MH17 incident as a pretext with no chances of retaliation. They also successfully implemented regime change in Ukraine -- blooding Putin nose in return.

But I actually disagree with JohnH. First of all Putin does not need to interfere in a way like the USA did in 2011-2012. It would be a waist of resources as both candidates are probably equally bad for Russia (and it is the "deep state" which actually dictate the US foreign policy, not POTUS.)

The US political system is already the can of worms and the deterioration of neoliberal society this time created almost revolutionary situation in Marxists terms, when Repug elite was not able to control the nomination. Democratic establishment still did OK and managed to squash the rebellion, but here the level of degeneration demonstrated itself in the selection of the candidate.

Taking into account the level of dysfunction of the US political system, I am not so sure the Trump is preferable to Hillary for Russians. I would say he is more unpredictable and more dangerous. The main danger of Hillary is Syria war escalation, but the same is true for Trump who can turn into the second John McCain on a dime.

Also the difference between two should not be exaggerated. Both are puppets of the forces the brought them to the current level and in their POTUS role will need to be subservient to the "deep state". Or at least to take into account its existence and power. And that makes them more of prisoners of the position they want so much.

Trump probably to lesser extent then Hillary, but he also can't ignore the deep state. Both require the support of Republican Congress for major legislative initiatives. And it will very hostile to Hillary. Which is a major advantage for Russians, as this excludes the possibility of some very stupid moves.

Again, IMHO in no way any of them will control the US foreign policy. In this area the deep state is in charge since Allen Dulles and those who try to deviate too much might end as badly as JFK. I think Obama understood this very well and did not try to rock the boat. And there are people who will promptly explain this to Trump in a way that he understands.

In other words, neither of them will escape the limit on their power that "deep state" enforces. And that virtually guarantee the continuity of the foreign policy, with just slight tactical variations.

So why Russians should prefer one to another? You can elect a dog as POTUS and the foreign policy of the USA will be virtually the same as with Hillary or Trump.

In internal policy Trump looks more dangerous and more willing to experiment, while Hillary is definitely a "status quo" candidate. The last thing Russians needs is the US stock market crush. So from the point of internal economic policy Hillary is also preferable.

A lot of pundits stress the danger of war with Russia, and that might be true as women in high political position try to outdo men in hawkishness. But here Hillary jingoism probably will be tightly controlled by the "deep state". Hillary definitely tried to be "More Catholic then the Pope" in this area while being the Secretary of State. That did not end well for her and she might learn the lesson.

But if you think about the amount of "compromat" (Russian term ;-) on Hillary and Bill that Russians may well already collected, in "normal circumstances" she might be a preferable counterpart for Russians. As in "devil that we know". Both Lavrov and Putin met Hillary. Medvedev was burned by Hillary. Taking into account the level of greed Hillary displayed during her career, I would be worried what Russians have on her , as well as on Bill "transgressions" and RICO-style actions of Clinton Foundation.

And taking into account the level of disgust amount the government officials with Hillary (and this is not limited to Secret Service) , new leaks are quite possible, which might further complicate her position as POTUS.

In worst case, the first year (or two) leaks will continue. Especially if damaging DNC leaks were the work of some disgruntled person within the USA intelligence and not of some foreign hacker group. That might be a plus for Russians as such a constant distraction might limit her possibility to make some stupid move in Syria. Or not.

As you know personal emails boxes for all major Web mail providers are just one click away for NSA analysts. So "Snowden II" hypothesis might have the right to exist.

Also it is quite probably that impeachment process for Hillary will start soon after her election. In the House Republicans have enough votes to try it. That also might be a plus for s for both Russia and China. Trump is extremely jingoistic as for Iran, and that might be another area were Hillary is preferable to Russians and Chinese over Trump.

Also do not discount her health problems. She does have some serious neurological disease, which eventually might kill her. How fast she will deteriorate is not known but in a year or two the current symptoms might become more pronounced. If Bill have STD (and sometime he looks like a person with HIV; http://joeforamerica.com/2016/07/bill-clinton-aids/) that further complicates that picture (this is just a rumor, but he really looks bad).

I think that all those factors make her an equal, or even preferable candidate for such states as Russia and China.

 

This is the situation of "king is naked" -- the state that teaches other countries about democracy has completely corrupted election process, like a typical banana republic. That what  Wikileak revelations proved.

In his post Is Russia our enemy?  Colonel W. Patrick Lang is a retired senior officer of U.S. Military Intelligence and U.S. Army Special Forces (The Green Berets) aptly stated:
The Democratic Party convention and the media are full of the assumption that Russia is the enemy of the United States.  What is the basis for that assumption?

The Obama Administration is apparently committed to a pre-emptive assertion that Russia is a world class committed enemy of the United States. The Borgist media fully support that.

We should all sober up.

The Russian theme has  become one of the most important in Hillary presidential campaign and she unsurprisingly is engaged in full-scale anti-Russian hysteria. 
Hillary joined ranks with neocons, military-industrial complex and plain-vanilla Russophobes (katehon.com, Jul 28. 2016):

Speaking at a press conference in Florida, Trump called on Russia to hand over the 30,000 emails "missing" from the Hillary Clinton's email server in the US. Their absence is a clear sign that Clinton destroyed evidence proving that she used her personal e-mail server to send sensitive information. Democrats immediately accused Trump of pandering to Russian hackers, although in reality the multi-billionaire rhetorically hinted that the data that Clinton hid from the American investigation is in the hands of foreign intelligence services. So, Clinton is a possible target for blackmail.

Trump's statement that he is ready to discuss the status of Crimea and the removal of anti-Russian sanctions caused even more noise. This view is not accepted either in the Democrat or in the Republican mainstream. Trump also said that Vladimir Putin does not respect Clinton and Obama, while Trump himself hopes to find a common language with him. Trump appreciates Putin's leadership and believes that the US must work together with Russia to deal with common threats, particularly against Islamic extremism.
Hide The establishment's tantrum

Both Democrats and Republicans are taking aim at Trump. The vice-presidential candidate, Mike Pence, made threats to Russia. The head of the Republican majority in Congress, Paul Ryan, became somewhat hysterical. He said that Putin is "a thug and should stay out of these elections."

It is Putin personally, and the Russian security services, who are accused of leaking correspondences of top employees of the National Committee of the Democratic Party. This unverified story united part of the Republicans and all of the Democrats, including the Clinton and Barack Obama themselves. Trump supporters note that the Russian threat is used to divert attention from the content of these letters. And these show the fraud carried out during the primaries which favored Hillary Clinton.
Hide The pro-American candidate

The "Russian scandal" demonstrates that on the one hand the thesis of the normalization of relations with Russia, despite the propaganda, is becoming popular in US society. It is unlikely that Donald Trump has made campaign statements that are not designed to gain the support of the public in this election. On the other hand - Trump - a hard realist, like Putin, is not pro-Russian, but a pro-American politician, and therefore the improvement of relations with Russia in his eyes corresponds to the US's national interests. Trump has never to date done anything that would not be to his advantage. Sometimes he even said he would order US fighter jets to engage with Russian ones, and declared he would have a hard stance in relations with Russia.

Another thing is that his understanding of US national interests is fundamentally different from the dominant American globalist elite consensus. For Trump, the US should not be the source of a global liberal remaking of the world, but a national power, which optimizes its position just as efficiently as any commercial project. And in terms of optimizing the position of the United States, he says there should be a normal American interaction with Putin and Russia in the field of combating terrorism and preventing the sliding of the two countries into a global war. He claims this is to be the priority instead of issues relating to the promotion of democracy and the so-called fight against "authoritarian regimes".
 

Bullsh**t that the US MSM are now propagating is essentially a variation of the old theme  "The Russians are Coming".  Here is nice satire on the topic (washingtonsblog.com):

MC: President Putin, did the Russian government hack the DNC email server and then publically release those emails through Wikileaks the day before the Democratic convention?

Putin: Yes.

MC: Yes! Are you serious?

Putin: I’m quite serious.

MC: How can you justify this open meddling in United States politics?

MC: How can you justify this open meddling in United States politics?

Putin: Your question should be what took Russia so long. The US oligarchs and their minions surround us with military bases and nuclear missiles, damage our trade to Europe, and seek to destabilize our domestic politics.  These emails are nothing in the big picture. But they’re sort of funny, don’t you agree?

MC: I’m not sure that funny is the right word.  What do you mean by that?

Putin:   You’ve got Hillary Clinton running as a strong and independent woman. Of course, nobody would know who she is had she not married Bill Clinton. She’s not independent. Quite the contrary. She had to marry a philandering redneck to get to where she is. When it comes to strength, I can say only this. How strong can you be if you have to cheat and create a rigged game to win the nomination?

MC: Anything else about your leak to cheer us up?

Putin: This situation is the epitome of ironic humor. After the emails were released, the focus was all on DNC Chair and Congresswoman Debbie Wasserman-Schultz. That’s fine for now but what happens when people start asking why Wasserman-Schultz had the DNC screw Sanders and boost Hillary? Did she just wake up one day and decide this on her own?. Not likely. She was and remains Hillary’s agent.   It will take people a while to arrive that answer. When enough people hear about Wasserman-Schultz’s key role in the Clinton campaign, everything will be clear.   It’s adios Hillary. That inevitable conclusion, by the way, is the reason the DNC made such a big deal about Russia hacking the DNC.  That was diversion one right out of the gate.

DNC and Clinton are going to push the Russian card very hard in anticipation of further stories and revelations of corruption, money laundering, etc.  Technical analysis provided is some idiotic, entry level nonsense. And it should ne complete dulsh*t as those cases are very complex and can used smokescreen -- deflecting attention from a read source (for example Israel) to Russians (Israel has large Russian speaking population, that is well represented in security services of the country).

When the USA opened this can of worm with Stixnet (discovered around mid 2010) and Flame (discovered around 2012), they did not expect a blowback. Now it start coming: it is simply impossible to secure "normal" Microsoft-based IT system against any sophisticated adversary. Remember that we live in the period when developed by NSA and "friends" Flame and Stixnet worm are part of the recorded history. And  technologies used in them are well studied by all major world three letter agencies. They became a part of their workbook.  And the response to their devilishness they generated even more devilish methods of attack of any IT infrastructure based on Microsoft technologies, to say nothing about such low hanging fruit as completely  corrupt  DNC with semi-competent IT staff using pathetic Microsoft Exchange based email system: (naked capitalism):

However, in this short post I want to focus on a much narrower question: Can we ever know who hacked the DNC email? Because if we can't, then clearly we can't know the Russians did. And so I want to hoist this by alert reader JacobiteInTraining from comments :

Yup, as a former server admin it is patently absurd to attribute a hack to anyone in particular until a substantial amount of forensic work has been done. (read, poring over multiple internal log files…gathering yet more log files of yet more internal devices, poring over them, then – once the request hops out of your org – requesting logfiles from remote entities, poring over *those* log files, requesting further log files from yet more upstream entities, wash rinse repeat ad infinitum).

For example, at its simplest, I would expect a middling-competency hacker to find an open wifi hub across town to connect to, then VPN to server in, say, Tonga, then VPN from there to another box in Sweden, then connect to a PC previously compromised in Iowa, then VPN to yet another anonymous cloud server in Latvia, and (assuming the mountain dew is running low, gotta get cracking) then RDP to the target server and grab as many docs as possible. RAR those up and encrypt them, FTP them to a compromised media server in South Korea, email them from there to someones gmail account previously hacked, xfer them to a P2P file sharing app, and then finally access them later from a completely different set of servers.

In many cases where I did this sort of analysis I still ended up with a complete dead end: some sysadmins at remote companies or orgs would be sympathetic and give me actual related log files. Others would be sympathetic but would not give files, and instead do their own analysis to give me tips. Many never responded, and most IPs ended up at unknown (compromised) personal PCs, or devices where the owner could not be found anyway.

If the hacker was sloppy and left other types of circumstantial evidence you might get lucky – but that demographic mostly points back to script kiddies and/or criminal dweebs – i.e., rather then just surreptitiously exfiltrating the goods they instead left messages or altered things that seemed to indicate their own backgrounds or prejudices, or left a message that was more easily 'traced'. If, of course, you took that evidence at face value and it was not itself an attempt at obfuscation.

Short of a state actor such as an NSA who captures it ALL anyway, and/or can access any log files at any public or private network at its own whim – its completely silly to attribute a hack to anyone at this point.

So, I guess I am reduced to LOL OMG WTF its fer the LULZ!!!!!

And :

Just to clarify on the "…If the hacker was sloppy and left other types of circumstantial evidence…" – this is basically what I have seen reported as 'evidence' pointing to Russia: the Cyrillic keyboard signature, the 'appeared to cease work on Russian holidays' stuff, and the association with 'known Russian hacking groups'.

That's great and all, but in past work I am sure my own 'research' could easily have gotten me 'associated' with known hacking groups. Presumably various 'sophisticated' methods and tools get you closer to possible suspects…but that kind of stuff is cycled and recycled throughout the community worldwide – as soon as anything like that is known and published, any reasonably competent hacker (or org of hackers) is learning how to do the same thing and incorporating such things into their own methods. (imitation being the sincerest form of flattery)

I guess I have a lot more respect for the kinds of people I expect to be getting a paycheck from foreign Intelligence agencies then to believe that they would leave such obvious clues behind 'accidentally'. But if we are going to be starting wars over this stuff w/Russia, or China, I guess I would hope the adults in the room don't go all apesh*t and start chanting COMMIES, THE RUSSIANS ARE COMING!, etc. before the ink is dry on the 'crime'.

The whole episode reminds me of the Sony hack , for which Obama also blamed a demonized foreign power. Interestingly - to beg the question here - the blaming was also based on a foreign character set in the data (though Hangul, not Korean). Look! A clue!

JacobiteInTraining's methodology also reminds me of NC's coverage of Grexit. Symbol manipulators - like those in the Democrat-leaning creative class - often believe that real economy systems are as easy to manipulate as symbol systems are. In Greece, for example, it really was a difficult technical challenge for Greece to reintroduce the drachma, especially given the time-frame, as contributor Clive remorselessly showed. Similarly, it's really not credible to hire a consultant and get a hacking report with a turnaround time of less than a week, even leaving aside the idea that the DNC just might have hired a consultant that would give them the result they wanted (because who among us, etc.) What JacobiteInTraining shows us is that computer forensics is laborious, takes time, and is very unlikely to yield results suitable for framing in the narratives proffered by the political class. Of course, that does confirm all my priors!

Readers, thoughts?

Update Addition by Yves:

Another reader, Hacker, observed (emphasis original):

There is a problem with those who argue that these are sophisticated Nation State attackers and then point to the most basic circumstantial evidence to support their case. I'd bet that, among others, the Israelis have hacked some Russian servers to launch attacks from and have some of their workers on a Russian holiday schedule. Those things have been written about in attack analysis so much over the last 15-20 years that they'd be stupid not to.

Now, I'm not saying the Israelis did it. I'm saying that the evidence provided so far by those arguing it is Russia is so flaky as to prove that the Russia accusers are blinded or corrupted by their own political agenda.

Update [Yves, courtesy Richard Smith] 7:45 AM. Another Medium piece by Jeffrey Carr, Can Facts Slow The DNC Breach Runaway Train? who has been fact-checking this story and comes away Not Happy. For instance:

Thomas Rid wrote:

One of the strongest pieces of evidence linking GRU to the DNC hack is the equivalent of identical fingerprints found in two burglarized buildings: a reused command-and-control address - 176.31.112[.]10 - that was hard coded in a piece of malware found both in the German parliament as well as on the DNC's servers. Russian military intelligence was identified by the German domestic security agency BfV as the actor responsible for the Bundestag breach. The infrastructure behind the fake MIS Department domain was also linked to the Berlin intrusion through at least one other element, a shared SSL certificate.

This paragraph sounds quite damning if you take it at face value, but if you invest a little time into checking the source material, its carefully constructed narrative falls apart.

Problem #1: The IP address 176.31.112[.]10 used in the Bundestag breach as a Command and Control server has never been connected to the Russian intelligence services. In fact, Claudio Guarnieri , a highly regarded security researcher, whose technical analysis was referenced by Rid, stated that "no evidence allows to tie the attacks to governments of any particular country."

Mind you, he has two additional problems with that claim alone. This piece is a must read if you want to dig further into this topic.

NOTES

[1] More than a talking point but, really, less than a narrative. It's like we need a new word for these bite-sized, meme-ready, disposable, "throw 'em against the wall and see if they stick" stories; mini-narrative, or narrativelette, perhaps. "All the crunch of a real narrative, but none of the nutrition!"

[2] This post is not about today's Trump moral panic, where the political class is frothing and stamping about The Donald's humorous (or ballbusting, take your pick) statement that he "hoped" the Russians had hacked the 30,000 emails that Clinton supposedly deleted from the email server she privatized in her public capacity as Secretary of State before handing the whole flaming and steaming mess over to investigators. First, who cares? Those emails are all about yoga lessons and Chelsea's wedding. Right? Second, Clinton didn't secure the server for three months. What did she expect? Third, Trump's suggestion is just dumb; the NSA has to have that data, so just ask them? Finally, to be fair, Trump shouldn't have uttered the word "Russia." He should have said "Liechtenstein," or "Tonga," because it's hard to believe that there's a country too small to hack as fat a target as Clinton presented; Trump was being inflammatory. Points off. Bad show.

Pavel , July 28, 2016 at 4:01 am

For those interested, the excellent interviewer Scott Horton just spoke with Jeffrey Carr, an IT security expert about all this. It's about 30 mins:

Jeffrey Carr, a cyber intelligence expert and CEO of Taia Global, Inc., discusses his fact-checking of Josh Marshall's TalkingPointsMemo article that claims a close alliance between Trump and Putin; and why the individuals blaming Russia for the DNC email hack are more motivated by politics than solid evidence.

–The Scott Horton Show: 7/25/16 Jeffrey Carr

Carr makes the point that even supposed clues about Russian involvement ("the default language is Cyrillic!") are meaningless as all these could be spoofed by another party.

Separately it just shows again Team Clinton's (and DNC's) political deviousness and expertise how they –with the full support of the MSM of course –have managed to deflect the discussion to Trump and Russia from how the DNC subverted US democracy.

pretzelattack , July 28, 2016 at 4:15 am

and again, we see the cavalier attitude about national security from the clinton camp, aggravating the already tense relationship with russia over this bullshit, all to avoid some political disadvantage. clinton doesn't care if russia gets the nuclear launch codes seemingly, but impact her chances to win the race and it's all guns firing.

dk , July 28, 2016 at 4:59 am

"… all these could be spoofed by another party."

Well yeah, and I could be a bot, how do you know I'm not?

Absent any other evidence to work with, I can accept it as credible that a clumsy Russian or Baltic user posted viewed and saved docs instead of the originals; par for the course in public and private bureaucracies the world over. It would have been useful to see the original Properties metadata; instead we get crapped up copies. That only tells me the poster is something of a lightweight, and it at least somewhat suggests that these docs passed through multiple hands.

But that doesn't mean A) the original penetration occurred under state control (or even in Russia proper), much less B) that Putin Himself ordered the hack attempts, which is the searing retinal afterimage that the the media name-dropping and photo-illustrating conflation produces.

Unspoofed, the Cyrillic fingerprints still do not closely constrain conclusion to A, and even less to B.

Another name for the trick DNC used is "Catch a chief" -- a deflection of attention from their own criminal behaviour. But they should now be really afraid about what can come next from Wikileaks or elsewhere. I don't think Hillary was capable to understand how easy it is to find corruption, especially when there's a email trail.  And this lack of understanding is a typical feature of a sociopath (http://www.theblaze.com/contributions/could-hillary-clinton-be-a-sociopath/ )

As Guardian reported (The Guardian) Clinton campaign tried old "dog eat my homework" trick blaming everything on Putin and trying to ignore the content of them and the dirty laundry they expose:

Hillary Clinton’s campaign has accused Russia of meddling in the 2016 presidential election, saying its hackers stole Democratic National Committee (DNC) emails and released them to foment disunity in the party and aid Donald Trump.

Clinton’s campaign manager, Robby Mook, said on Sunday that “experts are telling us that Russian state actors broke into the DNC, stole these emails, [and are] releasing these emails for the purpose of helping Donald Trump”.

“I don’t think it’s coincidental that these emails are being released on the eve of our convention here,” he told CNN’s State of the Union, alluding to the party’s four-day exercise in unification which is set to take place this week in Philadelphia.

“This isn’t my assertion,” Mook said. “This is what experts are telling us.”

In a statement, the Clinton campaign repeated the accusation: “This is further evidence the Russian government is trying to influence the outcome of the election.”

Classic scapegoating. As Guardian commenter noted "Why is the (potential) perpetrator of the leak more significant than the content of the leak??

As life exceeds satire, one can imagine that within a week Wikileaks will produce those "missing e-mails". And later Hillary's Wall Street speeches, following the next appeal from Trump.

In any case a major US establishment party explicitly levied it's resources against a candidate it didn't like behaviors like a Mafioso clan, and when caught red handed start to deflect attention via corrupt and subservant MSM, changing focus into Russia and Putin instead. Great journalism!" The Guardian

 atopic  

I find very I interesting that, somehow, the initial DNC leak story failed to make a headline position (a day late, at that) on the Guardian, but now that it's blown up on other channels, the DNC's ridiculous conspiracy theory/distraction attempt gets top billing here. Ridiculous.

Why is the (potential) perpetrator of the leak more significant than the content of the leak?? A major US establishment party explicitly levied it's resources against a candidate it didn't like, and somehow we're talking about Putin instead. Great journalism.

 
Chanze Jennings ->  atopic

The Guardian has sunk to a new low and has entirely no shame. It's a sad day for journalism when Twitter has more integrity than most news outlets. And they wonder why newspapers are going the way of the Dodo. Remember when real journalists presented stories with little bias and tried hard to stick to the facts?

BTW there are some real experts on this and they have a different opinion. Check comments for the blog post: 

http://www.nakedcapitalism.com/2016/07/nsa-whistleblower-not-so-fast-on-claims-russia-behind-dnc-email-hack.html

Corrupt to the core MSM ignore the event and try to distract readers with scapegoating nonsense

ABC and CNN are essentially part of the DNC propaganda wing. They and most other MSM were trying to reshape this mess to reduce the amount of damage.  Stephanopolis worked for Bill Clinton. And donated $75,000 to Hillary's campaign. And now he is trying to paint Trump as having ties to the Putin regime.

They try do not touch Hillary connections with Saudi, revive email scandal, touch Clinton cash skandal,  etc. They really behave like they are part of Clinton campaign. And readers noticed that as is evident from comments (The 4 Most Damaging Emails From the DNC WikiLeaks Dump - ABC News):

Kintbury  -> Mr. Fusion 21 hours ago

You are going to have to do a heck of a lot better than that. A Saudi Prince has admitted to funding a large portion of Hillary's campaign. That is a tie. All the money she took from those countries while benefiting them as Secretary of State is a tie.

Know Mei > deanbob
"Spoken like someone who has never been a member of the Democratic Party and has no understanding of what we do," Debbie Wasserman Schultz. Oh, believe me, Debbie, the American people know what the Democratic Party and the Republican Party does. Both parties embellish, manipulate, grant high positions to big donors, plot, backstab and railroad the vote of the American electorate. However, business as usual did not work well for the Republican Party elitists this primary season. Donald Trump beat the Republican Party elitists at their game. Bernie Sanders attempted to do the same to the Democratic Party.
Alti  -> ADLives 2 days ago

I think they are being short-sighted. Trump will in all likelihood win now and I don't see him sticking to the script. The media has completely betrayed the American public on this story. From Facebook and Twitter blocking and deleting stories re: same initially - to now with the non-articles we are getting from the big news agencies. Finding decent, honest news coverage shouldn't be so hard.

William Carr > Know Mei •

“Both parties embellish, manipulate, grant high positions to big donors, plot, backstab and railroad the vote of the American electorate”

America needs international monitors to oversee our elections

In reality Wikileaks exposed the blatant corruption of the primary process for voters. The elephant was in the room, but the real situation with Democratic Party primary process is now  suppressed.


Top Visited
Switchboard
Latest
Past week
Past month

NEWS CONTENTS

Old News ;-)

Home 2019 2018 2017 2016 2015 2000

For the list of top articles see Recommended Links section

[May 20, 2019] f you believe the US media if they just removed Putin, Russia would go back to being a good little puppet state just like under Yeltins.

May 20, 2019 | www.moonofalabama.org

Kadath , May 19, 2019 4:21:27 PM | 0

That was an interesting article on psychological vs sociological storytelling and it makes a good companion piece when thinking about how the US media personalizes US geo-political conflicts with the heads of rival state (Putin, Xi, Castro, Kim Jong-un, Khomeini, Gaddafi). If you believe the US media if they just removed Putin, Russia would go back to being a good little puppet state just like under Yeltins.

Which is a shockingly naïve way to look at international relations. States have permanent interests and any competent head of State will always represent those interests to the best of their ability. True, you could overthrow the government and replace every senior government figure with a compliant puppet (which the US always tries to do), but the permanent interests that arise from the inhabitants of the State will always rise up and (re)assert themselves. When the State leadership is bribed or threatened into ignoring or acting against these needs it ultimately creates a failed State.

Even the US media seems to subconsciously understand this, when they talk of "overly ambitious US goals of remaking societies", however, they never make the logical next step of investigating why these States do not wish to be remade as per the US imagined ideal, what the interests of these actually are and how diplomacy can resolve conflicts. According to the US media everything boils down to the US = good, anyone who disagrees with our policies = bad and diplomacy is just a measure of how vulgar our threats are during talks. I'm specifically thinking of the US Ambassador to Russia, John Huntsman's boast of a US aircraft carrier in the Mediterranean as being 100,000 tons of diplomacy to Russia - of all the ridiculous and stupid things to says to Russia when supposedly trying to "ease" tensions (I still can't believe Huntsmen, former Ambassador to China under Obama, is regarded a "serious" professional ambassador within the State departments when compared to all the celebrity ambassadorships the US President for fundraiser).

[May 20, 2019] What Putin and Pompeo Did Not Talk About -- Strategic Culture

May 20, 2019 | www.strategic-culture.org

Strategic Culture

Search Editor's Сhoice What Putin and Pompeo Did Not Talk About Editor's Choice May 16, 2019 © Photo: kremlin.ru Russia is uneasy over the destabilization of Tehran, and on other hotspots the powers' positions are clear

Pepe ESCOBAR Even veiled by thick layers of diplomatic fog, the overlapping meetings in Sochi between US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and President Putin and Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov still offer tantalizing geopolitical nuggets.

Russian presidential aide Yury Ushakov did his best to smooth the utterly intractable, admitting there was "no breakthrough yet" during the talks but at least the US "demonstrated a constructive approach."

Putin told Pompeo that after his 90-minute phone call with Trump, initiated by the White House, and described by Ushakov as "very good," the Russian president "got the impression that the [US] president was inclined to re-establish Russian-American relations and contacts to resolve together the issues that are of mutual interest to us."

That would imply a Russiagate closure. Putin told Pompeo, in no uncertain terms, that Moscow never interfered in the US elections, and that the Mueller report proved that there was no connection between the Kremlin and the Trump campaign.

This adds to the fact Russiagate has been consistently debunked by the best independent American investigators such as the VIPS group.

'Interesting' talk on Iran

Let's briefly review what became public of the discussions on multiple (hot and cold) conflict fronts – Venezuela, North Korea, Afghanistan, Iran.

Venezuela – Ushakov reiterated the Kremlin's position: "Any steps that may provoke a civil war in the country are inadmissible." The future of President Maduro was apparently not part of the discussion.

That brings to mind the recent Arctic Council summit. Both Lavrov and Pompeo were there. Here's a significant exchange:

Lavrov: I believe you don't represent the South American region, do you?

Pompeo: We represent the entire hemisphere.

Lavrov: Oh, the hemisphere. Then what's the US doing in the Eastern Hemisphere, in Ukraine, for instance?

There was no response from Pompeo.

North Korea – Even acknowledging that the Trump administration is "generally ready to continue working [with Pyongyang] despite the stalemate at the last meeting, Ushakov again reiterated the Kremlin's position: Pyongyang will not give in to "any type of pressure," and North Korea wants "a respectful approach" and international security guarantees.

Afghanistan – Ushakov noted Moscow is very much aware that the Taliban are getting stronger. So the only way out is to find a "balance of power." There was a crucial trilateral in Moscow on April 25 featuring Russia, China and the US, where they all called on the Taliban to start talking with Kabul as soon as possible.

Iran – Ushakov said the JCPOA, or Iran nuclear deal, was "briefly discussed.".He would only say the discussion was "interesting."

Talk about a larger than life euphemism. Moscow is extremely uneasy over the possibility of a destabilization of Iran that allows a free transit of jihadis from the Caspian to the Caucasus.

Which brings us to the heart of the matter. Diplomatic sources – from Russia and Iran – confirm, off the record, there have been secret talks among the three pillars of Eurasian integration – Russia, China and Iran – about Chinese and Russian guarantees in the event the Trump administration's drive to strangle Tehran to death takes an ominous turn.

This is being discussed at the highest levels in Moscow and Beijing. The bottom line: Russia-China won't allow Iran to be destroyed.

But it's quite understandable that Ushakov wouldn't let that information slip through a mere press briefing.

Wang Yi and other deals

On multiple fronts, what was not disclosed by Ushakov is way more fascinating than what's now on the record. There's absolutely no way Russian hypersonic weapons were not also discussed, as well as China's intermediate-range missiles capable of reaching any US military base encircling or containing China.

The real deal was, in fact, not Putin-Pompeo or Pompeo-Lavrov in Sochi. It was actually Lavrov-Wang Yi (the Chinese Foreign Minister), the day before in Moscow.

A US investment banker doing business in Russia told me: " Note how Pompeo ran like mad to Sochi. We are frightened and overstretched."

Diplomats later remarked: "Pompeo looked solemn afterwards. Lavrov sounded very diplomatic and calm." It's no secret in Moscow's top diplomatic circles that the Chinese Politburo overruled President Xi Jinping's effort to find an accommodation to Trump's tariff offensive. The tension was visible in Pompeo's demeanor.

In terms of substance, it's remarkable how Lavrov and Wang Yi talked about, literally, everything: Syria, Iran, Venezuela, the Caspian, the Caucasus, New Silk Roads (BRI), Eurasia Economic Union (EAEU), Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO), missiles, nuclear proliferation.

Or as Lavrov diplomatically put it: "In general, Russia-China cooperation is one of the key factors in maintaining the international security and stability, establishing a multipolar world order. . . . Our states cooperate closely in various multilateral organizations, including the UN, G20, SCO, BRICS and RIC [Russia, India, China trilateral forum], we are working on aligning the integration potential of the EAEU and the Belt and Road Initiative, with potentially establishing [a] larger Eurasian partnership."

The strategic partnership is in sync on Venezuela, Syria, Iran, Afghanistan – they want a solution brokered by the SCO. And on North Korea, the message could not have been more forceful.

After talking to Wang Yi, Lavrov stressed that contacts between Washington and North Korea "proceeded in conformity with the road map that we had drafted together with China, from confidence restoration measures to further direct contacts."

This is a frank admission that Pyongyang gets top advice from the Russia-China strategic partnership. And there's more: "We hope that at a certain point a comprehensive agreement will be achieved on the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula and on the creation of a system of peace and security in general in Northeast Asia, including concrete firm guarantees of North Korea's security."

Translation: Russia and China won't back down on guaranteeing North Korea's security. Lavrov said: "Such guarantees will be not easy to provide, but this is an absolutely mandatory part of a future agreement. Russia and China are prepared to work on such guarantees."

Reset, maybe?

The indomitable Maria Zakharova, Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokeswoman, may have summed it all up . A US-Russia reset may even, eventually, happen. Certainly, it won't be of the Hillary Clinton kind, especially when current CIA director Gina Haspel is shifting most of the agency's resources towards Iran and Russia.

Top Russian military analyst Andrei Martyanov was way more scathing . Russia won't break with China, because the US " doesn't have any more a geopolitical currency to 'buy' Russia – she is out of [the] price range for the US."

That left Ushakov with his brave face, confirming there may be a Trump-Putin meeting on the sidelines of the G20 summit in Osaka next month.

"We can organize a meeting 'on the go' with President Trump. Alternatively, we can sit down for a more comprehensive discussion."

Under the current geopolitical incandescence, that's the best rational minds can hope for.

asiatimes.com The views of individual contributors do not necessarily represent those of the Strategic Culture Foundation. Tags: Lavrov Pompeo Putin Russia US Print this article Editor's Choice May 16, 2019 | Editor's Сhoice What Putin and Pompeo Did Not Talk About Russia is uneasy over the destabilization of Tehran, and on other hotspots the powers' positions are clear

Pepe ESCOBAR Even veiled by thick layers of diplomatic fog, the overlapping meetings in Sochi between US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and President Putin and Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov still offer tantalizing geopolitical nuggets.

Russian presidential aide Yury Ushakov did his best to smooth the utterly intractable, admitting there was "no breakthrough yet" during the talks but at least the US "demonstrated a constructive approach."

Putin told Pompeo that after his 90-minute phone call with Trump, initiated by the White House, and described by Ushakov as "very good," the Russian president "got the impression that the [US] president was inclined to re-establish Russian-American relations and contacts to resolve together the issues that are of mutual interest to us."

That would imply a Russiagate closure. Putin told Pompeo, in no uncertain terms, that Moscow never interfered in the US elections, and that the Mueller report proved that there was no connection between the Kremlin and the Trump campaign.

This adds to the fact Russiagate has been consistently debunked by the best independent American investigators such as the VIPS group.

'Interesting' talk on Iran

Let's briefly review what became public of the discussions on multiple (hot and cold) conflict fronts – Venezuela, North Korea, Afghanistan, Iran.

Venezuela – Ushakov reiterated the Kremlin's position: "Any steps that may provoke a civil war in the country are inadmissible." The future of President Maduro was apparently not part of the discussion.

That brings to mind the recent Arctic Council summit. Both Lavrov and Pompeo were there. Here's a significant exchange:

Lavrov: I believe you don't represent the South American region, do you?

Pompeo: We represent the entire hemisphere.

Lavrov: Oh, the hemisphere. Then what's the US doing in the Eastern Hemisphere, in Ukraine, for instance?

There was no response from Pompeo.

North Korea – Even acknowledging that the Trump administration is "generally ready to continue working [with Pyongyang] despite the stalemate at the last meeting, Ushakov again reiterated the Kremlin's position: Pyongyang will not give in to "any type of pressure," and North Korea wants "a respectful approach" and international security guarantees.

Afghanistan – Ushakov noted Moscow is very much aware that the Taliban are getting stronger. So the only way out is to find a "balance of power." There was a crucial trilateral in Moscow on April 25 featuring Russia, China and the US, where they all called on the Taliban to start talking with Kabul as soon as possible.

Iran – Ushakov said the JCPOA, or Iran nuclear deal, was "briefly discussed.".He would only say the discussion was "interesting."

Talk about a larger than life euphemism. Moscow is extremely uneasy over the possibility of a destabilization of Iran that allows a free transit of jihadis from the Caspian to the Caucasus.

Which brings us to the heart of the matter. Diplomatic sources – from Russia and Iran – confirm, off the record, there have been secret talks among the three pillars of Eurasian integration – Russia, China and Iran – about Chinese and Russian guarantees in the event the Trump administration's drive to strangle Tehran to death takes an ominous turn.

This is being discussed at the highest levels in Moscow and Beijing. The bottom line: Russia-China won't allow Iran to be destroyed.

But it's quite understandable that Ushakov wouldn't let that information slip through a mere press briefing.

Wang Yi and other deals

On multiple fronts, what was not disclosed by Ushakov is way more fascinating than what's now on the record. There's absolutely no way Russian hypersonic weapons were not also discussed, as well as China's intermediate-range missiles capable of reaching any US military base encircling or containing China.

The real deal was, in fact, not Putin-Pompeo or Pompeo-Lavrov in Sochi. It was actually Lavrov-Wang Yi (the Chinese Foreign Minister), the day before in Moscow.

A US investment banker doing business in Russia told me: " Note how Pompeo ran like mad to Sochi. We are frightened and overstretched."

Diplomats later remarked: "Pompeo looked solemn afterwards. Lavrov sounded very diplomatic and calm." It's no secret in Moscow's top diplomatic circles that the Chinese Politburo overruled President Xi Jinping's effort to find an accommodation to Trump's tariff offensive. The tension was visible in Pompeo's demeanor.

In terms of substance, it's remarkable how Lavrov and Wang Yi talked about, literally, everything: Syria, Iran, Venezuela, the Caspian, the Caucasus, New Silk Roads (BRI), Eurasia Economic Union (EAEU), Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO), missiles, nuclear proliferation.

Or as Lavrov diplomatically put it: "In general, Russia-China cooperation is one of the key factors in maintaining the international security and stability, establishing a multipolar world order. . . . Our states cooperate closely in various multilateral organizations, including the UN, G20, SCO, BRICS and RIC [Russia, India, China trilateral forum], we are working on aligning the integration potential of the EAEU and the Belt and Road Initiative, with potentially establishing [a] larger Eurasian partnership."

The strategic partnership is in sync on Venezuela, Syria, Iran, Afghanistan – they want a solution brokered by the SCO. And on North Korea, the message could not have been more forceful.

After talking to Wang Yi, Lavrov stressed that contacts between Washington and North Korea "proceeded in conformity with the road map that we had drafted together with China, from confidence restoration measures to further direct contacts."

This is a frank admission that Pyongyang gets top advice from the Russia-China strategic partnership. And there's more: "We hope that at a certain point a comprehensive agreement will be achieved on the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula and on the creation of a system of peace and security in general in Northeast Asia, including concrete firm guarantees of North Korea's security."

Translation: Russia and China won't back down on guaranteeing North Korea's security. Lavrov said: "Such guarantees will be not easy to provide, but this is an absolutely mandatory part of a future agreement. Russia and China are prepared to work on such guarantees."

Reset, maybe?

The indomitable Maria Zakharova, Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokeswoman, may have summed it all up . A US-Russia reset may even, eventually, happen. Certainly, it won't be of the Hillary Clinton kind, especially when current CIA director Gina Haspel is shifting most of the agency's resources towards Iran and Russia.

Top Russian military analyst Andrei Martyanov was way more scathing . Russia won't break with China, because the US " doesn't have any more a geopolitical currency to 'buy' Russia – she is out of [the] price range for the US."

That left Ushakov with his brave face, confirming there may be a Trump-Putin meeting on the sidelines of the G20 summit in Osaka next month.

"We can organize a meeting 'on the go' with President Trump. Alternatively, we can sit down for a more comprehensive discussion."

Under the current geopolitical incandescence, that's the best rational minds can hope for.

asiatimes.com © 2010 - 2019 | Strategic Culture Foundation | Republishing is welcomed with reference to Strategic Culture online journal www.strategic-culture.org . The views of individual contributors do not necessarily represent those of the Strategic Culture Foundation. Also by this author Editor's Choice Propaganda Intensifies Trade War With China Fire the Nutcases Leading Us to War The Struggle Is the Meaning CONFIRMED: Chemical Weapons Assessment Contradicting Official Syria Narrative Is Authentic Who's Behind the Pro-Guaidó Crowd Besieging Venezuela's D.C. Embassy? Sign up for the Strategic Culture Foundation Newsletter Subscribe


To the top
© 2010 - 2019 | Strategic Culture Foundation | Republishing is welcomed with reference to Strategic Culture online journal www.strategic-culture.org . The views of individual contributors do not necessarily represent those of the Strategic Culture Foundation. <div><img src="https://mc.yandex.ru/watch/10970266" alt=""/></div>

[May 20, 2019] The Democrats just led the country on a three year-long wild goose chase. Will they apologize by Mike Whitney

This was a color revolution run by consortium of intelligence agencies and the leadership of the Democratic Party, not "wild goose chase". The key participants perfectly undersood that this is "regime change" operation.
And Russiagate was not about Trump but about profits of military industrial complex and control over US foreign policy. BTW Trump folded just in three months after inauguration.
This is a very weak article, but some comments are excellent.
Notable quotes:
"... The damage the Democrats (and their allies in the FBI and media) have done to the country is incalculable, but even worse, is the damage they've done to their own party. ..."
"... the Democrats have betrayed the trust of the people who supported their respective campaigns with the implicit understanding that they would work for the progressive reforms that improve the lives of ordinary working people and not behave like hectoring, obstructionist crybabies who refuse to respect the outcome of elections if the winner is not to their liking ..."
"... What we've seen in the last few years is not only unacceptable, it's also degraded our politics and divided the country into rival camps ..."
"... Russiagate has shed light on the cozy relationship between the Democratic party, the Intelligence Agencies, the FBI and the media. ..."
"... Their relentless, but coordinated attacks on the president strongly suggest that there may be an alliance between the various groups of which the American people are completely unaware. This suspicion seems at least partially substantiated by an article that appeared in the World Socialist Web Site titled "The CIA Democrats". ..."
"... CIA ran this whole show. Not Brennan, CIA the institution. Gina Haspel was in London marshaling the foreign intelligence cutouts, and now she's DCI. ..."
"... In this day and age nobody swallows the CIA propaganda "CIA works for the president." Don Gregg stuck that into the Pike Report after he threatened the committees with martial law. So let's stop pretending that CIA rule is man bites dog. Your government is CIA. ..."
"... Far from mourning its failure to depose Trump, the Deep State is celebrating its own prowess in leading him by the nose. The Deep State has learned to stop worrying and love the bombastic orange clown. ..."
"... Lets not pretend Russia-phobia isn't bipartisan. Even Trump went along with it by placing sanctions on Russia for imaginary "meddling". Making RT register as foreign agent. ..."
"... Lets not forget that Trump admin also expelled Russian diplomats and closed their consulate in Seattle over the bogus Skripal attack in Britain. ..."
"... Trump also launched missiles on Syria over the false flag chemical attack staged by the White Helmets (ISIS), that Trump admin. is still funding. Further poking at Russia. ..."
"... The Trump-Russia collusion scandal was the Deep State's attempt at a coup. The Mueller investigation failed to deliver so they now move on to their next coup attempt. ..."
"... In the 2018 mid-terms some 70 percent of Democratic voters, along with a high number of Independents and even Republicans believed that Trump had colluded with Russia. Yet with so many voters basing their voting decisions on fake news and misinformation, once again, the Left doesn't seemed concerned at all. ..."
"... The "Democrats" – one half of the corrupt set of American bootlicking politicians – spent three years screaming and howling and wearing Trump down until now he is governing just like Hillary Clinton would have. Endless pointless winless wars that serve only to spread chaos and enrich defense contractors, continuing subsidies of Wall Street, tax cuts for big time-plutocrats and coming soon nice juicey regressive taxes for you and me! – and of course, more legal immigration and a government-enabled invasion of our southern border by central America because the rich like cheap labor. ..."
"... That Müeller found nothing to corroborate collusion is likely the result of NSA intercepts that would disprove anything his team and the other agencies might fabricate as proof of the charge. There are a couple serious dividing lines in the national security state that have made it difficult for the coup conspirators to succeed; what will be interesting is if they do in fact get away with trying. ..."
"... Bill Clinton's telecommunication act of 1996 did a lot of damage. Clinton was a CFR agent for the parasite. ..."
"... The fourth estate centralized and came under corporate control after 1996. Those who are remotely aware know that the press organs are owned by our favorite in-group which has messianic goals. This in-group, while small in number, has goals amplified by money power. ..."
"... The neoCONs won and have Trump under control and he's hiring Bush-men as fast as he can ..."
"... it looks like Trump will run in 2020 as a WAR President, in Venezuela and/or Iran. The Bush/Trump Crime Family has been born from the ashes of the Bush/Clinton Crime Family. ..."
"... A crime of obstruction would be something like the destruction subpoenaed evidence; such as taking Bleachbit to your e-mails, or smashing your smartphones with hammers ..."
"... They just go from one lie they're more than happy to believe to another – this time its "obstruction" and the media will push that lie too ..."
"... You can legally hire or fire your maid but if your motivation -- intention in either of those acts is to bribe her or threaten her because she knows something about you that could get you in legal trouble. Then it is obstruction. ..."
May 20, 2019 | www.unz.com

For the last two and a half years, the Democrats have led the country on a wild goose chase that has been a complete waste of time and achieved absolutely nothing. The absurd conspiracy theory that the President of the United States was an agent of the Kremlin has been thoroughly debunked by the Mueller Report which states that there was neither "coordination" nor "conspiracy with the Trump campaign and Russia." Even so, congressional Democrats– still determined to destroy Trump by whatever means possible– have switched from the "collusion" allegations to vicious attacks on Attorney General William Barr and demands for Trump's tax returns.

The ease with which the Dems have shifted from their ridiculous claims that Trump was "Putin's stooge" to this new round of vitriolic accusations and mud-slinging, shows that party leaders have not only lost touch with reality, but also, that they have no interest in governing the country. The Democratic party in its current form, is less a political organization than it is a permanent inquisition led by duplicitous vipers (Adam Schiff, Eric Swalwell, Jerry Nadler) who feel entitled to use the Justice System to pursue their own petty political vendetta against a Beltway outsider who had the audacity to win the 2016 presidential election and whose views on foreign policy do not jibe with those of their elite paymasters.

The damage the Democrats (and their allies in the FBI and media) have done to the country is incalculable, but even worse, is the damage they've done to their own party. By focusing exclusively on Donald Trump and the fictitious Russian boogieman, the Democrats have betrayed the trust of the people who supported their respective campaigns with the implicit understanding that they would work for the progressive reforms that improve the lives of ordinary working people and not behave like hectoring, obstructionist crybabies who refuse to respect the outcome of elections if the winner is not to their liking.

These are the people who have been hurt most by the Russiagate fiasco, the people who thought their Democratic candidates actually wanted to run the country, but soon discovered that those same representatives would rather spend all of their time chasing Russian ghosts down a rabbit hole.

Here's an excerpt from an article by Andrew McCarthy that helps to explain what the Russia probe was really all about:

"Russiagate has always been a political narrative masquerading as a federal investigation. Its objective, plain and simple, has been twofold: first, to hamstring Donald Trump's capacity to press the agenda on which he ran .and ultimately, to render him unelectable come autumn 2020 .

The Russia counterintelligence probe, based on the fraudulent projection of a Trump-Putin conspiracy, was always a pretext to conduct a criminal investigation despite the absence of a predicate crime. The criminal investigation, in turn, was always a pretext for congressional impeachment chatter. And the congressional impeachment chatter is a pretext for the real agenda: Making Trump an ineffective president now, and an un-reelectable president 18 months from now.

They try to make it look like law. It has always been politics." ( "Russiagate: Law in the Service of Partisan Politics" , Andrew McCarthy, National Review)

Indeed, Russiagate "has always been politics", but the quality of our politics has deteriorated significantly in the last few years, a point that's worth mulling over for a minute or two. For nearly three years we've seen one party rip up the rulebook and engage in a full-blown, scorched earth, no-holds-barred blitzkrieg on the president of the United States. At no time has there been any effort to discuss issues, ideals, policies, or competing visions of the future. Instead, every ounce of energy has been devoted to inflicting maximum damage on the man who, many Democrats think, is deserving of whatever horrendous reprisal they direct at him.

The Democrats have made no secret of their hatred for Trump or their desire to drive him from office. They have openly supported the dirty tricks, the hyper-ventilating headlines, and the relentless smear campaigns that have been aimed at him from Day 1. Through Russiagate, the Dems have tried to frame Trump as a backstabbing traitor who sold out his country to a foreign power, but now that Mueller has proved that Trump was falsely accused, the Dems have deftly switched to another line of attack altogether. This isn't how sincere liberals fight to implement a plan for progressive change. This is how unprincipled mercenaries pursue the politics of personal destruction. There's a big difference.

This isn't about Trump. Trump could be the worst president in history, and it still wouldn't excuse the contemptible way he's been treated. Is it ever acceptable to spy on a presidential campaign, to insert confidential informants who try to entrap campaign assistants to gather information that can be used to intimidate, blackmail or impeach the president? Is it ever acceptable to leak classified information to the media as part of a malignant scheme to destroy a candidate's reputation? Is it ever acceptable to enlist senior-level officials at the FBI, CIA and NSA to prevent a candidate from being elected or to engage in a stealth campaign of slanders, smears and innuendo that cast a shadow over the legitimacy of the government?

No, it's not acceptable. Never.

What we've seen in the last few years is not only unacceptable, it's also degraded our politics and divided the country into rival camps. We've come to expect that every morning will bring some new crisis centered on Trump's latest tweet followed by hours of incendiary coverage on the cable news channels, all aimed at throwing more gas on the raging fire that's engulfed the country. And, of course, no one scandal has consumed more time or been more inflammatory than the Russia probe. Here's how The Nation's Stephen Cohen sums it up in a recent article:

"Now in its third year, Russiagate is the worst, most corrosive, and most fraudulent political scandal in modern American history. these Russiagate allegations continue to inflict grave damage on fundamental institutions of American democracy. They impugn the integrity of the presidency and now the office of the attorney general. They degrade the many Democratic members of Congress who persist in clinging to the allegations and thus the Democratic Party and Congress. And they have enticed mainstream media into one of the worst episodes of journalistic malpractice in modern times.

Russiagate's unproven allegations are an aggressive malignancy spreading through America's politics to the most vital areas of national security policy." ( "Russiagate Zealotry Continues To Endanger Western National Security" , Stephen Cohen, The Nation)

Cohen's piece cuts to the heart of the matter. Russiagate has not only undermined our "fundamental institutions", it has also impacted our "national security." But I would argue that the damage caused by the Trump-Russia investigation is even greater than Cohen describes, mainly because Russiagate has shed light on the cozy relationship between the Democratic party, the Intelligence Agencies, the FBI and the media. These are the institutions that have waged war on Trump from the very beginning. Their relentless, but coordinated attacks on the president strongly suggest that there may be an alliance between the various groups of which the American people are completely unaware. This suspicion seems at least partially substantiated by an article that appeared in the World Socialist Web Site titled "The CIA Democrats". Here's an excerpt:

"An extraordinary number of former intelligence and military operatives from the CIA, Pentagon, National Security Council and State Department are seeking nomination as Democratic candidates for Congress in the 2018 midterm elections. The potential influx of military-intelligence personnel into the legislature has no precedent in US political history.

If the Democrats capture a majority in the House of Representatives on November 6, as widely predicted, candidates drawn from the military-intelligence apparatus will comprise as many as half of the new Democratic members of Congress. They will hold the balance of power in the lower chamber of Congress." ( "The CIA Democrats" , Patrick Martin, World Socialist Web Site)

Would anyone be surprised to find out that the CIA was taking a more activist role in domestic politics; that it's actually grooming its own candidates for elections, that it's strengthening its influence in the media and its ties with one of the main political parties, all in an effort to better control electoral outcomes and tighten its grip on power?

No, no one would be surprised at all. And although we don't yet know all the details, there are signs that the Intel agencies, the FBI, the media and high-ranking Democrats may have been working secretively for the same objectives, to either sabotage the 2016 presidential election or gather incriminating information on Trump that could be used at some later date. All of this coordinated activity hints at the emergence of a one-party political system that is guided by agents and elites who the American people don't know and never voted for.

In any event, we're going to find out alot more about these illicit connections as the Justice Department's three separate probes gain pace and reveal how "the FBI used one party's 'opposition research' as the basis to get a warrant from a secret court to spy on the other party's campaign." That is the crux of the matter. That's the question that will throw open the curtains and shed light on the suspicious ties between the DNC, the CIA, the FBI and the media, all of who may have been directly involved in the dodgy plan to depose the president of the United States.


Rational , says: May 15, 2019 at 7:15 pm GMT

THE DEMOGANGSTERS ARE THE REAL CRIMINALS; MUELLER WAS AN AGENT OF THE DEEP STATE, BUT STILL FOUND NO EVIDENCE.

Thanks, Sir. You are so right -- Russiagate is a manufactured scam to get an elected President out of office, to carry out a coup by using our criminal justice system as a criminal enterprise. And to cover up the real crimes of the real criminals, the Demogangsters like Hillary, etc.

Mueller was a member of the Deep State. If there was ANY collusion (whatever statute there is that outlaws talking to somebody in a foreign country), Mueller would have found it or invented it.

The fact that he could not shows that the the Demogangsters had no grounds whatsoever to manufacture this fake "Russiagate" scandal.

In reality, this scandal should be called Demogangstergate.

The DOJ should now investigate the real criminals, the Demogansters. Hillary and Soros are America's biggest criminals and they belongs in prison for life.

dearieme , says: May 15, 2019 at 7:28 pm GMT
Two minutes – that would let you easily quantify how tired someone is, how badly they are suffering from the flu, whether they are showing unusual intellectual decline with age,

If I were an employer I might like to learn how my staff's performance declined with longer working days, with a view to telling them not to work excessive hours. Or with a view to finding how best to intersperse the working day with breaks – for food, chat, exercise, or whatever.

I've long wondered why corporations pay large sums to, for instance, management consultants or lawyers, when much of the work will be done by novices, sobbing from exhaustion at their desks.

Digital Samizdat , says: May 15, 2019 at 11:41 pm GMT

Is it ever acceptable to spy on a presidential campaign ? Is it ever acceptable to leak classified information to the media as part of a malignant scheme to destroy a candidate's reputation? Is it ever acceptable to enlist senior-level officials at the FBI, CIA and NSA to prevent a candidate from being elected ?

No, it's not acceptable. Never.

Sure it is! If you're Anastacio Somoza, and you're running a banana republic which is, sadly, what we now are.

Reg Cæsar , says: May 16, 2019 at 1:30 am GMT

their ridiculous claims that Trump was "Putin's stooge"

If they want to pivot to portraying Netanyahu as his seeing-eye dog, there's already a Portuguese cartoon for that.

anonymous [340] Disclaimer , says: May 16, 2019 at 8:04 am GMT
@dearieme I believe that you meant to post this under Mr. Thompson's article.
ABC 123 , says: May 16, 2019 at 2:14 pm GMT
There's an odd relapse into statist indoctrination in this generally sound argument. The idea that a rigidly-controlled centralized state party can "enlist senior-level officials at the FBI, CIA and NSA" is bassackwards. CIA ran this whole show. Not Brennan, CIA the institution. Gina Haspel was in London marshaling the foreign intelligence cutouts, and now she's DCI. As for the litany of political interference in the paragraphs, CIA's been doing that for seven decades now. In this day and age nobody swallows the CIA propaganda "CIA works for the president." Don Gregg stuck that into the Pike Report after he threatened the committees with martial law. So let's stop pretending that CIA rule is man bites dog. Your government is CIA.

And outrage over casting a shadow over the 'legitimacy' of government? Pul-leeease. Legitimacy is a squishy term. Let's stick to the term of art, sovereignty. Sovereignty is responsibility. One agency, CIA, is chartered with impunity. They do anything they they want and get away with it. CIA's freedom from responsibility means the USA is not a sovereign state but a criminal enterprise. Perhaps you want to defend the legitimacy of the criminal enterprise that's got its hooks in you. Knock yourself out.

This is not to impugn your good faith. We all have to fight our way out of decades of CIA brainwashing. It's simple. CIA has multiple redundant get-out-of-jail-free cards and secret books for untrammeled power of the purse. That's the definition of arbitrary rule. The crux of the matter is CIA runs your country.

fenestol , says: May 16, 2019 at 5:49 pm GMT
Far from mourning its failure to depose Trump, the Deep State is celebrating its own prowess in leading him by the nose. The Deep State has learned to stop worrying and love the bombastic orange clown.

A worthy article.

Endgame Napoleon , says: May 16, 2019 at 9:58 pm GMT
If they apologize, it will remove their Russian Trolls decoy, the one placed carefully in the water to keep the corporate-owned media focused on just this one cluster of minor global shenanigans, not all of the others, like the Biden's involvement in Ukraine or most of the US Congress getting rich off of something It's not by building businesses than employ underemployed US citizens. In addition to their multi six-figure salaries, they're all getting rich off of placing bets on the rigged stock casino and the global-offshoring / outsourcing / welfare-rigged-mass-immigration economy.
redmudhooch , says: May 17, 2019 at 1:51 am GMT
Lets not pretend Russia-phobia isn't bipartisan. Even Trump went along with it by placing sanctions on Russia for imaginary "meddling". Making RT register as foreign agent. Its all a distraction. Might have to actually do some real work if we weren't having this replay of the red scare. People might start talking about Trumps, as well as most of DC's real owners if they stop screaming about Putin.

Not everyone went along with it, Tulsi didn't, she even introduced legislation to require paper ballots in future elections to prevent imaginary "meddling" or hacking, no one in DC is interested, which either means there is no election meddling, or they don't actually care, they just wanted to poke at Russia.

Lets not forget that Trump admin also expelled Russian diplomats and closed their consulate in Seattle over the bogus Skripal attack in Britain.

Trump expels Russians, closes consulate in response to poison attack in Great Britain
https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/politics/2018/03/26/trump-expels-russians-closes-consulate-response-poison-attack/457930002/

Donald Trump's team says it is ready to block Russian election meddling this year
https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/politics/2018/08/02/election-security-donald-trumps-team-warns-against-midterms-meddling/889539002/

The Trump administration announced sweeping new sanctions on Russians in its biggest response yet to election meddling
https://www.businessinsider.com/trump-new-russia-sanctions-election-meddling-cyber-attacks-2018-3/

Trump also launched missiles on Syria over the false flag chemical attack staged by the White Helmets (ISIS), that Trump admin. is still funding. Further poking at Russia.

Mike from Jersey , says: May 17, 2019 at 11:30 pm GMT
Whitney's comment:

But I would argue that the damage caused by the Trump-Russia investigation is even greater than Cohen describes, mainly because Russiagate has shed light on the cozy relationship between the Democratic party, the Intelligence Agencies, the FBI and the media.

nails it. You cannot call this a democracy when a political party, the federal police, the intelligence agencies and the media all collude to invalidate an election. You can call it a lot of things, but you can't call it democracy.

animalogic , says: May 19, 2019 at 12:52 pm GMT
"You can call it a lot of things, but you can't call it democracy."

Correct. I'll call it a snowballing blob of degeneracy -- from A to Z. We, the world, are in so much trouble.

tanabear , says: May 20, 2019 at 4:27 am GMT
The Trump-Russia collusion scandal was the Deep State's attempt at a coup. The Mueller investigation failed to deliver so they now move on to their next coup attempt.

We know that the Left and the Democrats are insincere when they say they are outraged by Trump colluding with Russia. They aren't. If it is treason to get "dirt" on your political opponent from Russia then why isn't the Left and Democrats outraged by the DNC, the Clinton campaign, and Fusion GPS. The Steele dossier which was used to get a FISA warrant to spy on Carter Page and the Trump campaign came in part from Russian sources. So paid for political opposition, with Russian sub-sources, was used to go after Trump and interfere in an election. Yet they aren't the slightest bit bothered by any of this. In the 2018 mid-terms some 70 percent of Democratic voters, along with a high number of Independents and even Republicans believed that Trump had colluded with Russia. Yet with so many voters basing their voting decisions on fake news and misinformation, once again, the Left doesn't seemed concerned at all.

The Trump-Russia collusion narrative was just a pretext to start an investigation to hamstring the Trump Presidency. It is the same story all over again. Why did we invade Iraq in 2003? Was it because of Weapons of Mass Destruction(WMD) and links to Al-Qaeda? No, that was just the pretext to start the war. The real reasons for the Iraq war and the Russian Collusion conspiracy can never be stated publically.

renfro , says: May 20, 2019 at 5:04 am GMT
Oh barf good repubs, bad dems ! Grow up little Mikey ..they are both sheep herders and you are their sheep
TG , says: May 20, 2019 at 5:23 am GMT
Completely missing the point.

The "Democrats" – one half of the corrupt set of American bootlicking politicians – spent three years screaming and howling and wearing Trump down until now he is governing just like Hillary Clinton would have. Endless pointless winless wars that serve only to spread chaos and enrich defense contractors, continuing subsidies of Wall Street, tax cuts for big time-plutocrats and coming soon nice juicey regressive taxes for you and me! – and of course, more legal immigration and a government-enabled invasion of our southern border by central America because the rich like cheap labor.

The "Democrats" do not exist as a coherent ideology, they are a collection of whores who will do whatever they are paid to do. They have served their purpose in whipping up mindless hysteria – really, wanting to save trillions by not fighting pointless foreign wars and spending that on ourselves, that's racism and fascism and Literally Hitler? Really?

So I would say that, operationally, mission accomplished.

Anonymous [151] Disclaimer , says: May 20, 2019 at 5:25 am GMT
CIA ran this whole show. maybe, but I think it was all of the intelligence agencies.. British M-16, Israeli Mossad, and the Saudi Arabian groups..French, and even the Egyptian.. .. Turkey too.. they operate the functional parts of government everywhere.

... ... ...

The Alarmist , says: May 20, 2019 at 8:38 am GMT
That Müeller found nothing to corroborate collusion is likely the result of NSA intercepts that would disprove anything his team and the other agencies might fabricate as proof of the charge. There are a couple serious dividing lines in the national security state that have made it difficult for the coup conspirators to succeed; what will be interesting is if they do in fact get away with trying.
SafeNow , says: May 20, 2019 at 9:01 am GMT
The essay's ending – we will: "find out a lot more" "reveal" "throw open the curtain" "shed light". That's it??? Maybe this a deliberately subtle way of saying: there will be no real consequences; and so all is lost; banana Republic, soft dictatorship. In fact, if it's merely an opened-up curtain, the result in the MSM will be plaudits for the actors' patriotism.
Squarebeard , says: May 20, 2019 at 9:17 am GMT
@TG

The "Democrats" do not exist as a coherent ideology, they are a collection of whores who will do whatever they are paid to do. They have served their purpose in whipping up mindless hysteria – really, wanting to save trillions by not fighting pointless foreign wars and spending that on ourselves, that's racism and fascism and Literally Hitler? Really?

They think as a group and take their "lifestyle" cues from the likes of Rachel MadCow, HRC, the Obamas and "their" opinion on foreign policy comes from 3 letter agency people who "warn" them about treasonous Trump and foreign super villains. They wring their hands and clutch their pearls over the laws of the land being enforced at the southern border and the "Muslim ban" but nothing brings out the preemptive smelling salts quicker than Trump's refusal to adhere to liberal speech codes and middle class fake politeness.

When Trump and his neocon attack dogs threaten war on multiple fronts, drone Muslim wedding parties and goat herders, aid and abet the KSA and UAE war against Yemen, use sanctions as a weapon of war against countries that present no threat to America and prioritize Israel's interests over our own, the liberals breathe a secret sigh of relief and commend "literally Hitler" for finally acting presidential. All the righteous "concern" about POC, transfags and other "traditionally" oppressed groups is fake and a way for them to soothe the cognitive dissonance between their own self-image as "caring" and fair minded people and the reality that they don't care how many foreigners get killed by DC's foreign policy or how many of their own countrymen are left to suffer in despair from the fallout of their livelihoods being offshored.

What they do care about is their own material comfort and the illusion/delusion that they are good, morally upright people who deserve all the good things life has to offer because they work hard and are on the "right side of history." They have discovered that letting Democrat propagandists and liberal celebrities do their thinking for them is a good way for them to maintain their delusional world view and avoid thinking about the mind-boggling hypocrisies and double-standards they unquestioningly accept.

Don't get me wrong, there are lots of people on the political right who are just as crazy (e.g. the dedicated race warriors who take the 'war' part literally) but everyone knows this and few people take them seriously. It is old news that mainstream Republicans and Democrats are pretty much in lockstep when it comes to terrible foreign policy the ideological space between neocons like Bolton and Pompeo and neoliberal Democrats like Clinton and Biden is slim and right now there is more pushback against them coming from the conservatives side.

The disconcerting thing about deluded libtards is their unmatched ability to believe their own bullshit and the global reach this bullshit has via the mainstream media. It is ironic that the same people who made their "self-identities" as morally pure humanitarians and protectors of the weak and downtrodden a status marker have turned out to be some of the most arrogant, vapid and destructive hypocrites around, but it shouldn't be that surprising. In my experience people who go out of their way to highlight their own do-goodery and moral superiority sooner or later out themselves as virtue signalling bullshitters and hypocrites who are just following a trend. If these people had no real influence they would be a minor annoyance unfortunately they have quite a bit of influence. Not as much as they used to, hence their panic, but still enough to cause all kinds of trouble.

DESERT FOX , says: May 20, 2019 at 12:29 pm GMT
This Russia collusion scam proved that ... the CIA and the FBI and the Justice dept. are all corrupt as hell and all of these and more are under zionist control and there is no justice in America, justice is gone with the wind!

... ... ...

RVBlake , says: May 20, 2019 at 12:34 pm GMT
Regarding Cohen's assertion that the MSM was "enticed" into one of the worst journalistic malpractices of modern times, I am heartily skeptical of the portrayal of the MSM as being seduced into acting like the whores they are.
C3H8NO5P , says: May 20, 2019 at 1:22 pm GMT
You have to love the imaginations of these hoax writers. The CIA doesn't have time on their various networks and news websites to post any truth. They have so many lies scripted for so many years in advance the producers would lose it if someone tried to slip in a couple of minutes of truth.
DESERT FOX , says: May 20, 2019 at 1:34 pm GMT
@C3H8NO5P Agree, see the book The Secret Team, the CIA and its allies in control of America and the world, by Col. L. Fletcher Prouty, this is the most accurate book ever written about the chain dogs who guard the world for their zionist masters!
Johnny Walker Read , says: May 20, 2019 at 1:36 pm GMT
Funny how neither wing of the same bird will dare name the real controllers of America.

https://www.youtube.com/embed/ad7EYjIWK0U?feature=oembed

MEFOBILLS , says: May 20, 2019 at 1:43 pm GMT
Bill Clinton's telecommunication act of 1996 did a lot of damage. Clinton was a CFR agent for the parasite.

The fourth estate centralized and came under corporate control after 1996. Those who are remotely aware know that the press organs are owned by our favorite in-group which has messianic goals. This in-group, while small in number, has goals amplified by money power.

The parasite operates on multiple fronts. 1) Own the power to create bank credit as money 2) Collect interest on credit issued 3) Use debt slavery (expanding claims of debts) to make populations servile 4) Buy out and own the press (see #2) 5) Push a narrative good for your in-group. (see#4) 6) Messianic religion, where the people become their own god. An Oligarchy is then sanctioned because after all – we are our own gods.

Meanwhile, false narrative and twisted scripture has created Zionist Christians, who do the bidding of their masters.

The parasite is an evolutionary construct, with methods honed through the ages. His weakness is the falsity of his claims, which require a tower of lies to maintain. The other weakness is money power, which also relies on deception. The founders gave Congress the money power, hence it was to be under control of the law (and the people), but through deception the money power transferred to a private money trust in 1913.

A parasite needs fuel from the host, and this fuel is derived as usury from money power. Funding then allows issuance of narrative and hypnosis (including towering lies) to control the host.

The construct of secret services being part of control matrix goes back to Bank of England in 1694 becoming first debt spreading bank, which soon put its population into debts, and gained control over parliament. British East Indies company had its own mercenary soldiers and was fore-runner to MI6. In other words, MI6 was patterned on East Indies Company, and MI6 was grandfather to CIA.

It should be no surprise at all that Zionist World Government emanates from London, Wall Street, and Tel Aviv.

Returning the money power to law, is a simple law change. But, since Congress and Parliaments are owned, it is an uphill battle.

http://www.sovereignmoney.eu

Patrikios Stetsonis , says: May 20, 2019 at 2:08 pm GMT
@Rational I agree 'Rational', but one question.

Say, the Russians and Putin DID mess with our elections. So, what is the big deal?

We get involved messing with other Nations interior affairs, since the 18th century, if not earlier. So, why these "ethical" bastards (dems and some republicans) are crying about?

Plus, WHO holds the license to determine WHO is our friend and WHO is our enemy? CNN? CNBC? ABC? FOX?

I guess, I 'll come back to the phrase: It's ALL about Benjamins, baby.

P.S.
And NO: Hillary and Soros, ARE criminals but The REAL CRIMINALS and TRAITORS of the USA, are Israel and it supporters.

Sunshine , says: May 20, 2019 at 2:09 pm GMT
@Squarebeard Yeah there's totally no race war going on, at all. Only crazy people would think such a thing. It's not like the entire ruling class is in lockstep regarding laws and policies that cripple and destroy whites.

They don't allow non whites to attack whites, with little to no accountability, they don't bring them in by the millions, to swamp whites and "breed us out". They don't churn out endless anti white propaganda, showing whites as weak, submissive, old, and needing strong and vibrant non whites to "save" them from their own evil racism. They certainly don't shout it from their official positions and gloat about how whites are soon to be minorities in their own lands. They don't push endless race mixing propaganda, that somehow only shows "white + non white", and rarely ever something like "black + Asian". They don't mock and belittle whites every chance they get. They don't use "white" as a slur and a synonym for "uncool, hopeless, nerdy, weak". They don't refuse to allow whites to have racially based groups and institutions, while actively encouraging non whites to do just that. They don't give preferential treatment in every walk of life, to non whites at the expense of the better qualified and more intelligent whites.

They don't institute draconian and repressive "hate crime" laws designed to harshly punish whites for any "wrong thought" or imagined transgression against a holy and sainted oppressed non white. They certainly don't let non whites get away with racially targeted attacks (Rotherham, etc), and force the police to ignore it and prosecute the victims and their families when they seek justice.

If you don't think there's a race war happening, I can see that. Because really, only one side is fighting. The other side is too busy pretending it isn't happening, or enthusiastically groveling at the feet of the non whites, hoping to expiate their evil sin of whiteness.

Ignoring reality isn't going to spare you from the consequences of ignoring reality. All you have to do is look around whatever white country you're living in. It's not a secret.

TellTheTruth-2 , says: May 20, 2019 at 2:22 pm GMT
Major Mueller Report Omissions Suggest Incompetence Or A Coverup (right click) https://www.zerohedge.com/news/2019-05-06/major-mueller-report-omissions-suggest-hes-incompetent-or-covering-major-crimes

.. and .. Robert Mueller Is in Serious Legal Trouble – Here's Why (right click) https://russia-insider.com/en/robert-mueller-serious-legal-trouble-heres-why/ri27002

.. and .. The Real Muellergate Scandal (right click) https://www.craigmurray.org.uk/archives/2019/05/the-real-muellergate-scandal/

.. and .. Major Report Omission Shows Mueller Was Either Incompetent Or A Political Hack .. (right click) https://thefederalist.com/2019/05/06/major-report-omission-shows-mueller-either-incompetent-political-hack/

Will Julian Assange 'Team up' With Trump to Bury Russiagate – and Just Maybe the Deep State – Once and for All? (right click) https://www.strategic-culture.org/news/2019/04/24/will-julian-assange-team-up-with-trump-to-bury-russiagate-and-just-maybe-the-deep-state-once-and-for-all/

mike k , says: May 20, 2019 at 3:02 pm GMT
@ABC 123 You got that dead right ABC 123. The evil group in the shadows that really runs the government is called "the intelligence community." Some community! More like a giant Mafia.
Anon [405] Disclaimer , says: May 20, 2019 at 3:08 pm GMT
Mike Whitney,

The CIA needs reform and oversight. It should be divided into pieces that cannot communicate with each other, but only through oversight that is legally forbidden to ever become part of or get paid by CIA. I would suggest a section for each continent, or maybe even each country. Is have these sections in different buildings in different cities in America.

They should be allowed zero media infiltration in the United States.

If that reform failed, Id build a rival CIA and slowly give it the CIAs current workload, forcing the current brass into retirement. The new intel agency could be restricted from hiring any current CIA management, only hiring active spooks.

TellTheTruth-2 , says: May 20, 2019 at 3:36 pm GMT
@mike k The neoCONs won and have Trump under control and he's hiring Bush-men as fast as he can. NOTE: Both the new Attorney General and the newly announced Assistant Attorney General are both Bush-men, and even worse, they're Bush Sr. Bush-men. So it looks like Trump will run in 2020 as a WAR President, in Venezuela and/or Iran. The Bush/Trump Crime Family has been born from the ashes of the Bush/Clinton Crime Family.
Robert Dolan , says: May 20, 2019 at 4:18 pm GMT
@TellTheTruth-2 The President's name is Jeb Kushner.
DESERT FOX , says: May 20, 2019 at 4:42 pm GMT
@TellTheTruth-2 The zio/cons have always won since the zionists had JFK shot!
One Tribe , says: May 20, 2019 at 5:07 pm GMT
Thank you for bringing these facts, and the artful assembly of them, to public scrutiny.

The damage the Democrats (and their allies in the FBI and media) have done to the country is incalculable, but even worse, is the damage they've done to their own party.

We're still discussing these things, and others, on the overall degradation of social infrastructures, almost as if they are unrelated, but, these breakdowns have startling similarities, and even superficial inspection suggests a pattern and affiliation between the key controlling interests.

Is it " The FBI ", or an elite controlling faction, having hijacked the FBI?
Is it " The Democratic Party ", or an elite controlling faction, having hijacked the Democratic Party?

Regardless, it will be the reputation/credibility of the entire FBI and Democratic Party, which takes the hit, not the specific agent-provokateurs , in fact, " The Media ", will never get around to figuring it out, and airing them out, let alone, drawing similarities between these agent-provokateurs and those agent-provokateurs

Oh and BTW, just who, precisely, is " The Media "?

And while the discussion about the " The Democrats " is liberal, the discussion about " The Republicans Party ", is a bit on the conservative side.

But ultimately, what's the difference? Both these parties are dedicated to the 0.1% socio-economic elite , and their traditional hanger-ons/henchmen.

In fact, much of the artificial delineations of people, are controlled by the same people! They are effectively different " brandings " of bullshit-artistry , to baffle the minds of the 99%, and the first grift is that there is actually choice between two meaningfully different options.

... ... ...

Royce Orville , says: May 20, 2019 at 5:23 pm GMT
Trumps biggest achievements in the past 30 days:

Moron Whitney seems to think political parties matter. Why do the lower classes think any difference exists between the scum that rules over them? Only the slow minded see a difference between the republicans and the democrats. Trump supporters openly want a police state with a giant military and more and more cops, so the Russian thing was a great diversion. Obama supporters pretended they don't want the same, but voted for it anyway also promoting fear, obedience and the Russian thing.

Simon Tugmutton , says: May 20, 2019 at 5:43 pm GMT
This is a classic case of Betteridge's Law of Headlines: "an adage that states: 'Any headline that ends in a question mark can be answered by the word no.'"

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Betteridge%27s_law_of_headlines

Alden , says: May 20, 2019 at 7:22 pm GMT
@Peter Akuleyev It's obvious you haven't read the report Peter. Exactly what crimes did Trump commit.? And don't repeat what every ignorant liberal moron has been chanting for the last 3 years, "obstruction of justice"

Please note, a crime must be committed before any suspect, victim, witness anyone obstructs justice also known as obstruction of the investigation of the alleged crime that may or may not have been committed. The FBI investigated and investigated and investigated Trump and found nothing to investigate.

Since he was plotting away in New York and the District of Columbia, you might want to read the pertinent laws regarding obstruction of justice. No crime, no obstruction.

mcohen , says: May 20, 2019 at 9:12 pm GMT
The demo's need to chill like you know man.not going to make 2020 because the carpet is ready for a woman.madam president erect ek se.soft power.in like a banana out like a pineapple.
Anon [332] Disclaimer , says: May 20, 2019 at 10:29 pm GMT
They don't need to apologize.

They need to go to prison for attempting to undemocratically overturn an election using an invented narrative.

The press as well as the individuals associated with the special interest groups and government who were involved in this effort must face severe consequences. We'll be waiting until that happens, and we will not forget.

That's what they've created with this. A simmering nation awaiting justice.

Curmudgeon , says: May 20, 2019 at 10:40 pm GMT
@renfro So what's your point? The prosecutor "ultimately concludes one isn't guilty of crime X" actually proves Alden's point: a prosecutor would have to identify "crime X". Since "crime X" was fabricated, there was nothing to be guilty of, and since Trump knew that, there could be no obstruction.

As for Mueller's report, it was a political document. All of the hearsay about what Trump was thinking about means jackshit. Thinking about doing something isn't a crime – yet. All of the bogus "conspiracy to commit " trials, when no illegal action was taken, are Stalinist show trials – just like the Democrats and never Trumpers were hoping Mueller could produce for them.

tanabear , says: May 20, 2019 at 10:48 pm GMT
@renfro

You can obstruct justice even if a prosecutor ultimately finds you were not guilty of committing the crime that was the focus of the underlying investigation

Yes, but you still must commit a crime of obstruction. A crime of obstruction would be something like the destruction subpoenaed evidence; such as taking Bleachbit to your e-mails, or smashing your smartphones with hammers. However, the firing James Comey is completely legal and allowed by the Executive. A prosecutor cannot event a crime of obstruction when the action was perfectly legal. This is in effect what the Democrats and the Left are arguing for, the invention of new crimes to impeach Trump.

Carolyn Yeager , says: Website May 20, 2019 at 11:31 pm GMT
Excellent article. I'm glad I read it. Secret intelligence gathering agencies with huge budgets "to keep us safe" are a problem. Always have been, always will be. Trump should be given credit for causing all this to be brought to light.
anon [273] Disclaimer , says: May 21, 2019 at 2:34 am GMT

The Democrats Just Led the Country on a Three Year-Long Wild Goose Chase. Will They Apologize?

Of course not. They just go from one lie they're more than happy to believe to another – this time its "obstruction" and the media will push that lie too

renfro , says: May 21, 2019 at 2:51 am GMT
@tanabear

However, the firing James Comey is completely legal and allowed by the Executive. A prosecutor cannot event a crime of obstruction when the action was perfectly legal

Wrong again ..its obvious none of you know how to find the legal cites on the elements of obstruction. Whether Trump can 'legally' fire someone or not is immaterial .the court (and the law) looks at the INTENT behind the act. Period.

You can legally hire or fire your maid but if your motivation -- intention in either of those acts is to bribe her or threaten her because she knows something about you that could get you in legal trouble. Then it is obstruction.

[May 20, 2019] "Us" Versus "Them"

Highly recommended!
Notable quotes:
"... There are differences between the parties, but they are mainly centered around social issues and disputes with little or no consequence to the long-term path of the country. The real ruling oligarchs essentially allow controlled opposition within each party to make it appear you have a legitimate choice at the ballot box. Nothing could be further from the truth. ..."
"... There has been an unwritten agreement between the parties for decades where the Democrats pretend to be against war and the Republicans pretend to be against welfare. Meanwhile, spending on war and welfare relentlessly grows into the trillions, with no effort whatsoever from either party to even slow the rate of growth, let alone cut spending. The proliferation of the military industrial complex like a poisonous weed has been inexorable, as the corporate arms dealers place their facilities of death in the congressional districts of Democrats and Republicans. In addition, these corporate manufacturers of murder dole out "legal" payoffs to corrupt politicians of both parties in the form of political contributions. The Deep State knows bribes and well-paying jobs ensure no spineless congressman will ever vote against a defense spending increase. ..."
"... Of course, the warfare/welfare state couldn't grow to its immense size without financing from the Wall Street cabal and their feckless academic puppets at the Federal Reserve. The Too Big to Trust Wall Street banks, whose willful control fraud nearly wrecked the global economy in 2008, were rewarded by their Deep State patrons by getting bigger and more powerful as people on Main Street and senior citizen savers were thrown under the bus. ..."
"... When these criminal bankers have their reckless bets blow up in their faces they are bailed out by the American taxpayers, but when the Fed rigs the system so they are guaranteed billions in risk free profits, they reward themselves with massive bonuses and lobby for a huge tax cut used to buy back their stock. With bank branches in every congressional district in every state, and bankers spreading protection money to greedy politicians across the land, no legislation damaging to the banking cartel is ever passed. ..."
"... I voted for Trump because he wasn't Hillary. ..."
"... If the Chinese refuse to yield for fear of losing face, and the tariff war accelerates, a global recession is a certainty. ..."
"... These sociopaths are not liberal or conservative. They are not Democrats or Republicans. They are not beholden to a country or community. They care not for their fellow man. They don't care about future generations. They care about their own power, wealth and control over others. They have no conscience. They have no empathy. Right and wrong are meaningless in their unquenchable thirst for more. They will lie, steal and kill to achieve their goal of controlling everything and everyone in this world. This precisely describes virtually every politician in Washington DC, Wall Street banker, mega-corporation CEO, government agency head, MSM talking head, church leader, billionaire activist, and blood sucking advisor to the president. ..."
"... The problem is we have gone too far. The "American Dream" has become a grotesque nightmare because people by the millions sit around and dream about being a Kardashian. Makes me want to puke. ..."
May 20, 2019 | www.zerohedge.com

Authored by Jim Quinn via The Burning Platform blog,

"I'll show you politics in America. Here it is, right here. "I think the puppet on the right shares my beliefs." "I think the puppet on the left is more to my liking." "Hey, wait a minute, there's one guy holding out both puppets!"" – Bill Hicks

Anyone who frequents Twitter, Facebook, political blogs, economic blogs, or fake-news mainstream media channels knows our world is driven by the "Us versus Them" narrative. It's almost as if "they" are forcing us to choose sides and believe the other side is evil. Bill Hicks died in 1994, but his above quote is truer today then it was then. As the American Empire continues its long-term decline, the proles are manipulated through Bernaysian propaganda techniques, honed over the course of decades by the ruling oligarchs, to root for their assigned puppets.

Most people can't discern they are being manipulated and duped by the Deep State controllers. The most terrifying outcome for these Deep State controllers would be for the masses to realize it is us versus them. But they don't believe there is a chance in hell of this happening. Their arrogance is palatable.

Their hubris has reached astronomical levels as they blew up the world economy in 2008 and successfully managed to have the innocent victims bail them out to the tune of $700 billion, pillaged the wealth of the nation through their capture of the Federal Reserve (QE, ZIRP), rigged the financial markets in their favor through collusion, used the hundreds of billions in corporate tax cuts to buy back their stock and further pump the stock market, all while their corporate media mouthpieces mislead and misinform the proles.

There are differences between the parties, but they are mainly centered around social issues and disputes with little or no consequence to the long-term path of the country. The real ruling oligarchs essentially allow controlled opposition within each party to make it appear you have a legitimate choice at the ballot box. Nothing could be further from the truth.

There has been an unwritten agreement between the parties for decades where the Democrats pretend to be against war and the Republicans pretend to be against welfare. Meanwhile, spending on war and welfare relentlessly grows into the trillions, with no effort whatsoever from either party to even slow the rate of growth, let alone cut spending. The proliferation of the military industrial complex like a poisonous weed has been inexorable, as the corporate arms dealers place their facilities of death in the congressional districts of Democrats and Republicans. In addition, these corporate manufacturers of murder dole out "legal" payoffs to corrupt politicians of both parties in the form of political contributions. The Deep State knows bribes and well-paying jobs ensure no spineless congressman will ever vote against a defense spending increase.

Of course, the warfare/welfare state couldn't grow to its immense size without financing from the Wall Street cabal and their feckless academic puppets at the Federal Reserve. The Too Big to Trust Wall Street banks, whose willful control fraud nearly wrecked the global economy in 2008, were rewarded by their Deep State patrons by getting bigger and more powerful as people on Main Street and senior citizen savers were thrown under the bus.

When these criminal bankers have their reckless bets blow up in their faces they are bailed out by the American taxpayers, but when the Fed rigs the system so they are guaranteed billions in risk free profits, they reward themselves with massive bonuses and lobby for a huge tax cut used to buy back their stock. With bank branches in every congressional district in every state, and bankers spreading protection money to greedy politicians across the land, no legislation damaging to the banking cartel is ever passed.

I've never been big on joining a group. I tend to believe Groucho Marx and his cynical line, "I don't care to belong to any club that will have me as a member". The "Us vs. Them" narrative doesn't connect with my view of the world. As a realistic libertarian I know libertarian ideals will never proliferate in a society of government dependency, willful ignorance of the masses, thousands of laws, and a weak-kneed populace afraid of freedom and liberty. The only true libertarian politician, Ron Paul, was only able to connect with about 5% of the voting public. There is no chance a candidate with a libertarian platform will ever win a national election. This country cannot be fixed through the ballot box. Bill Hicks somewhat foreshadowed the last election by referencing another famous cynic.

"I ascribe to Mark Twain's theory that the last person who should be President is the one who wants it the most. The one who should be picked is the one who should be dragged kicking and screaming into the White House." ― Bill Hicks

Hillary Clinton wanted to be president so badly, she colluded with Barack Obama, Jim Comey, John Brennan, James Clapper, Loretta Lynch and numerous other Deep State sycophants to ensure her victory, by attempting to entrap Donald Trump in a concocted Russian collusion plot and subsequent post-election coup to cover for their traitorous plot. I wouldn't say Donald Trump was dragged kicking and screaming into the White House, but when he ascended on the escalator at Trump Tower in June of 2015, I'm not convinced he believed he could win the presidency.

As the greatest self-promoter of our time, I think he believed a presidential run would be good for his brand, more revenue for his properties and more interest in his reality TV ventures. He was despised by the establishment within the Republican and Democrat parties. The vested interests controlling the media and levers of power in society scorned and ridiculed this brash uncouth outsider. In an upset for the ages, Trump tapped into a vein of rage and disgruntlement in flyover country and pockets within swing states, to win the presidency over Crooked Hillary and her Deep State backers.

I voted for Trump because he wasn't Hillary. I hadn't voted for a Republican since 2000, casting protest votes for Libertarian and Constitutional Party candidates along the way. I despise the establishment, so their hatred of Trump made me vote for him. His campaign stances against foreign wars and Federal Reserve reckless bubble blowing appealed to me. I don't worship at the altar of the cult of personality. I judge men by their actions and not their words.

Trump's first two years have been endlessly entertaining as he waged war against fake news CNN, establishment Republicans, the Deep State coup attempt, and Obama loving globalists. The Twitter in Chief has bypassed the fake news media and tweets relentlessly to his followers. He provokes outrage in his enemies and enthralls his worshipers. With millions in each camp it is difficult to find an unbiased assessment of narrative versus real accomplishments.

I'm happy he has been able to stop the relentless leftward progression of our Federal judiciary. Cutting regulations and rolling back environmental mandates has been a positive. Exiting the Paris Climate Agreement and TPP, forcing NATO members to pay their fair share, and renegotiating NAFTA were all needed. Ending the war on coal and approving pipelines will keep energy costs lower. His attempts to vet Muslims entering the country have been the right thing to do. Building a wall on our southern border is the right thing to do, but he should have gotten it done when he controlled both houses.

The use of tariffs to force China to renegotiate one sided trade deals as a negotiating tactic is a high-risk, high reward gamble. If his game of chicken is successful and he gets better terms from the Chicoms, while reversing the tariffs, it would be a huge win. If the Chinese refuse to yield for fear of losing face, and the tariff war accelerates, a global recession is a certainty. Who has the upper hand? Xi is essentially a dictator for life and doesn't have to worry about elections or popularity polls. Dissent is crushed. A global recession and stock market crash would make Trump's re-election in 2020 problematic.

I'm a big supporter of lower taxes. The Trump tax cuts were sold as beneficial to the middle class. That is a false narrative. The vast majority of the tax cut benefits went to mega-corporations and rich people. Middle class home owning families with children received little or no tax relief, as exemptions were eliminated and tax deductions capped. In many cases, taxes rose for working class Americans.

With corporate profits at all time highs, massive tax cuts put billions more into their coffers. They didn't repatriate their overseas profits to a great extent. They didn't go on a massive hiring spree. They didn't invest in new facilities. They did buy back their own stock to help drive the stock market to stratospheric heights. So corporate executives gave themselves billions in bonuses, which were taxed at a much lower rate. This is considered winning in present day America.

The "Us vs. Them" issue rears its ugly head whenever Trump is held accountable for promises unkept, blatant failures, and his own version of fake news. Holding Trump to the same standards as Obama is considered traitorous by those who only root for their home team. Their standard response is that you are a Hillary sycophant or a turncoat to the home team. If you agree with a particular viewpoint or position of a liberal then you are a bad person and accused of being a lefty by Trump fanboys. Facts don't matter to cheerleaders. Competing narratives rule the day. Truthfulness not required.

The refusal to distinguish between positive actions and negative actions when assessing the performance of what passes for our political leadership by the masses is why cynicism has become my standard response to everything I see, hear or he read. The incessant level of lies permeating our society and its acceptance as the norm has led to moral decay and rampant criminality from the White House, to the halls of Congress, to corporate boardrooms, to corporate newsrooms, to government run classrooms, to the Vatican, and to households across the land. It's interesting that one of our founding fathers reflected upon this detestable human trait over two hundred years ago.

"It is impossible to calculate the moral mischief, if I may so express it, that mental lying has produced in society. When a man has so far corrupted and prostituted the chastity of his mind as to subscribe his professional belief to things he does not believe, he has prepared himself for the commission of every other crime." – Thomas Paine

Thomas Paine's description of how moral mischief can ruin a society was written when less than 3 million people inhabited America. Consider his accurate assessment of humanity when over 300 million occupy these lands. The staggering number of corrupt prostituted sociopaths occupying positions of power within the government, corporations, media, military, churches, and academia has created a morally bankrupt empire of debt.

These sociopaths are not liberal or conservative. They are not Democrats or Republicans. They are not beholden to a country or community. They care not for their fellow man. They don't care about future generations. They care about their own power, wealth and control over others. They have no conscience. They have no empathy. Right and wrong are meaningless in their unquenchable thirst for more. They will lie, steal and kill to achieve their goal of controlling everything and everyone in this world. This precisely describes virtually every politician in Washington DC, Wall Street banker, mega-corporation CEO, government agency head, MSM talking head, church leader, billionaire activist, and blood sucking advisor to the president.

The question pondered every day on blogs, social media, news channels, and in households around the country is whether Trump is one of Us or one of Them. The answer to that question will strongly impact the direction and intensity of the climactic years of this Fourth Turning. What I've noticed is the shunning of those who don't take an all or nothing position regarding Trump. If you disagree with a decision, policy, or hiring decision by the man, you are accused by the pro-Trump team of being one of them (aka liberals, lefties, Hillary lovers).

If you don't agree with everything Trump does or says, you are dead to the Trumpeteers. I don't want to be Us or Them. I just want to be me. I will judge everyone by their actions and their results. I can agree with Trump on many issues, while also agreeing with Tulsi Gabbard, Rand Paul, Glenn Greenwald or Matt Taibbi on other issues. I don't prescribe to the cult of personality school of thought. I didn't believe the false narratives during the Bush or Obama years, and I won't worship at the altar of the Trump narrative now.

In Part II of this article I'll assess Trump's progress thus far and try to determine whether he can defeat the Deep State.


TerryThomas , 32 minutes ago link

"The scientific and industrial revolution of modern times represents the next giant step in the mastery over nature; and here, too, an enormous increase in man's power over nature is followed by an apocalyptic drive to subjugate man and reduce human nature to the status of nature. Even where enslavement is employed in a mighty effort to tame nature, one has the feeling that the effort is but a tactic to legitimize total subjugation. Thus, despite its spectacular achievements in science and technology, the twentieth century will probably be seen in retrospect as a century mainly preoccupied with the mastery and manipulation of men. Nationalism, socialism, communism, fascism, and militarism, cartelization and unionization, propaganda and advertising are all aspects of a general relentless drive to manipulate men and neutralize the unpredictability of human nature. Here, too, the atmosphere is heavy-laden with coercion and magic." --Eric Hoffer

666D Chess , 11 minutes ago link

Divide and conquer, not a very novel idea... but very effective.

Kafir Goyim , 32 minutes ago link

If you don't agree with everything Trump does or says, you are dead to the Trumpeteers

That's not true. When Trump kisses Israeli ***, most "Trumpeteers" are outraged. That does not mean they're going to vote for Joe "I'm a Zionist" Biden, or Honest Hillary because of it, but they're still pissed.

Rich Monk , 33 minutes ago link

These predators (((them))) need to fear the Victims, us! That is what the 2ND Amendment is for. It's coming, slowly for now, but eventually it speeds up.

yellowsub , 42 minutes ago link

Ya'll a dumb fool if you think gov't as your best interests first.

legalize , 46 minutes ago link

Citation needed.

Any piece like this better be littered with footnotes and cited sources before I'm swallowing it.

I'll say it again: this is the internet, people. There's no "shortage of column space" to include links back to primary sources for your assertions. Otherwise, how am I supposed to distinguish you from another "psy op" or "paid opposition hit piece"?

bshirley1968 , 51 minutes ago link

"The question pondered every day on blogs, social media, news channels, and in households around the country is whether Trump is one of Us or one of Them."

If you still ponder this question, then you are pretty frickin' thick. It is obvious at this point, that he betrayed everything he campaigned on. You don't do that and call yourself one of "us".......damn sure aren't one of "me".

If I couldn't keep my word and wouldn't do what it takes to do what is right.....then I would resign. But I would not go on playing politics in a world that needs some real leadership and not another political hack.

The real battle is between Truth and Lie. No matter the name of your "team" or the "side" you support. Truth is truth and lies are lies. We don't stand for political parties, we stand for truth. We don't stand for national pride, we take pride in a nation that is truthful and trustworthy. The minute a "side" or "team" starts lying.....and justifying it.....that is the minute they become them and not one of us.

Any thinking person in this country today knows we are being lied to by the entire complex. Until someone starts telling the truth.....we are on our own. But I be damned before I am going to support any of these lying sons of bitches......and that includes Trump.

Fish Gone Bad , 37 minutes ago link

Dark comedy. All the elections have been **** choices until the last one. Take a look at Arkancide.com and start counting the bodies.

Anyone remember the news telling us how North Korea promised to turn the US into a sea of fire?? Trump absolutely went to bat for every single American to de-escalate that situation.

bshirley1968 , 31 minutes ago link

Don't tell me about Arkancide or the Clintons. I grew up in Arkansas with that sack of **** as my governor for 12 years.

NK was never a real threat to anyone. Trump didn't do ****. NK is back to building and shooting off missiles and will be teaming up with the Russians and Chinese. You are a duped bafoon.

Kafir Goyim , 28 minutes ago link

I don't think anybody thought NK was an existential threat to the US. It has still been nice making progress on bringing them back into the world and making them less of a threat to Japan and S. Korea. Trump did that.

Giant Meteor , 9 minutes ago link

Dennis Rodman did that, or that is to say, Trump an extension thereof ..

Great theater..

Look, i thought it was great that Trump went Kim Unning. I mean after all, i had talked with a few elderly folks that get their news directly from the mainstream of mainstream, vanilla news reportage. Propaganda central casting. I remember them being extremely concerned, outright petrified about that evil menace, kim gonna launch nukes any minute now. If the news would have been announced a major troop mobilization, bombing campaigns, to begin immediately they would have been completely onboard, waving the flag.

Frankly, it is only a matter of time, and folks can speculate on the country of interest, but it is coming soon to a theater near you. So many being in the crosshairs. Iran i suspect .. that's the big prize, that makes these sociopaths cream in their panties.

Probably. In the second term .. and so far, if ones honestly evaluates the "brain trust" / current crop of dimwit opposition, and in light of their past 2 plus years of moronic posturing with their hair on fire, trump will get his second term ..

666D Chess , 15 minutes ago link

Until the last one? You are retarded, the last election was a masterpiece of Rothschilds Productions. The Illuminati was watching you at their private cinema when you were voting for Trump and they were laughing their asses off.

HoodRatKing , 55 minutes ago link

The author does not realize that everyone in America, except Native American Indians, were immigrants drawn towards the false promise of hope that is the American Dream, turned nightmare..

Owning your own home, car, & raising a family in this country is so damn expensive & risky, that you'd have be on drugs or an idiot to even fall for the lies.

I don't see an us vs them, I see the #FakeMoney printers monetized every facet of life, own everything, & it truly is RENT-A-LIFE USSA, complete with bills galore, taxes galore, laws galore, jails & prisons galore, & the worst fkn country anyone would want to live in poverty & homelessness in.

At least in many 3rd world nations there is land to live off of & joblessness does not = a financial death sentence.

bshirley1968 , 39 minutes ago link

Sure. Lets all go back to living in huts.....off the land....no cars.....no electricity.....no running water......no roads....

There is a price to pay for things and it is not always in the form of money. We have given up some of our freedom for the ease and conveniences we want.

The problem is we have gone too far. The "American Dream" has become a grotesque nightmare because people by the millions sit around and dream about being a Kardashian. Makes me want to puke.

There is a balance. Don't take the other extreme or we never find balance.

911bodysnatchers322 , 56 minutes ago link

This article is moronic. One can easily prove that Trump is not like all the others in the poster. Has this author been living under a rock for the last 2.5 yrs? The past 5 presidents represent a group that has been literally trying to assassinate Trump, ruin his family, his reputation, his buisness and his future, for the audacity to be an ousider to the power network and steal (win) the presidency from under their noses. He's kept us OUT of war. He's dissolved the treachery that was keeping us in the middle east through gaslighitng and a proxy fake war that is ISIS, the globalists' / nato / fiveys / uk's fake mercenary army

Giant Meteor , 25 minutes ago link

And yet, I'll never forget all the smiling faces at the gala wedding affair.

Happier times ..

https://www.nytimes.com/2015/12/30/us/politics/ex-ally-donald-trump-now-heaps-scorn-on-bill-clinton.html

And yes, thanks in advance for noting the link is from New York slime, but i believe the picture in this case anyway, was not photo shopped.

She is, (hillary) after all, good people, a real fighter ..

**** .. mission accomplished ..

ExPat2018 , 1 hour ago link

The greatest threat to the USA is its own dumbed down drugged up citizens who cannot compete with anyone. America is a big military powerhouse but that doens't make successful countries

You must have intelligent people

America doesn't have that anymore.

JuliaS , 1 hour ago link

Notice how modern narrative is getting manipulated. What is being reported and referenced is completely different from how things are. And knowing that we can assume that the entire history is a fabricated lie, written by the ruling class to support its status in the minds of obedient citizens.

911bodysnatchers322 , 54 minutes ago link

This article is garbage propaganda that proves that they think we aren't keeping score or paying attention. The gaslighting won't work when it relies on so much counterthink, willful ignorance, counterfacts and weaponized omissions

istt , 1 hour ago link

The reality is the de-escalation of wars, the stability of our currency and our economy, and the moral re-grounding of our culture does not occur until we do what over 100 countries have done over the centuries, beginning in Carthage in 250AD.

fersur , 1 hour ago link

There's an old saying; "Congress does 2 things well Nothing and Protest" said by Pence Live-Streamed 4 hours ago at USMCA America First speech !

Good, Bad and Ugly

The Good is President Trump works extreme daily hours trying his best !

The Bad is Haters miss every bit of whatever their President Trump does that is good !

The Ugly is Hater Reporters ignoring World events, scared of possibly shining President Trump fairly !

SHsparx , 1 hour ago link

You really are making it a bit too obvious, bro.

911bodysnatchers322 , 52 minutes ago link

The congress are statusquotarians. If they solved the problems they say they would,they'd be out of a job. and that job is sitting there acting like a naddler or toxic post turtle leprechaun with a charisma and skill level of zero. Their staff do all the work, half of them barely read, though they probably can

SHsparx , 1 hour ago link

I still think 1st and 2nd ammedment is predicated on which party rules the house. If a Dem gets into the WH, we're fucked. Kiss those Iast two dying amendments goodbye for good.

Zeusky Babarusky , 1 hour ago link

If we rely on any party to preserve the 1st or 2nd Amendments, we are already fucked. What should preserve the 1st and 2nd Amendments is the absolute fear of anyone in government even mentioning suppressing or removing them. When the very thought of doing anything to lessen the rights advocated in these two amendments, causes a politician to piss in their pants, liberty will be preserved. As it is now citizens fear the government, and as a result tyranny continues to grow and fester as a cancer.

Zoomorph , 1 hour ago link

In other words, those amendments are already lost... we're just waiting for the final dictate to come down.

Zeusky Babarusky , 1 hour ago link

You may very well be right. I still hold out hope, but upon seeing what our society is quickly morphing into, that hope seems to fade more each and every day.

SHsparx , 49 minutes ago link

@ Zeusky Babarusky

I couldn't agree with you more.

Unfortunately, it is what it is, which is why I used the word "dying."

Those two amendments are on their deathbed, and if a Dem gets in the house, that'll be the nail in the coffin.

bshirley1968 , 1 hour ago link

If you think the 1st and 2nd amendments are reliant on who is in office, then you are already done. Why don't you try growing a pair and being an American for once in your life.

I will always have a 1st and 2nd "amendment" for as long as I live. Life is meaningless without them.....as far as I am concerned. Good thing the founders didn't wait for king George to give them what they "felt" was theirs.....by the laws of Nature and Nature's God.

I hope the democrats get the power......and I hope they come for the guns......maybe then pussies like you will finally have to **** or get off the pot......for once in your life. There are worse things than dying.

Nephilim , 1 hour ago link

THEHAZELFLOCKOFCRANES

BRINDLED FOOT,

AUSTRALIAN.

caveofgoldcaveofold

Zoomorph , 1 hour ago link

"Why do we have wars?"

"Because life is war: fighting for survival, resources, and what is best in the world."

"Why do people say war is bad?"

"Because they are useful idiots who have been tricked by religion and/or weak degenerates who are too weary to participate."

delta0ne , 1 hour ago link

This country cannot be fixed through the ballot box. Unless we get rid of *** influencing from abroad and domestically. Getting rid of English King few hundred years ago was a joke! this would be a challenge because dual-citizens masquerading as locals.

blind_understanding , 1 hour ago link

Last revolution (1776) we targeted the WRONG ENEMY.

We targeted King George III instead of the private bankers who owned of the Bank of England and the issued of the British-pound currency.

George III was himself up to his ears in debt to them by 1776, when the bankers installed George Washington to replace George III as their middleman in the American colonies, by way of the phony revolution.

Phony because ownership of the central bank and currency (Federal-Reserve Banks, Federal-Reserve notes) we use, remains in the same banking families' hands to this day. The same parasite remains within our government.

djrichard , 1 hour ago link

https://www.ribbonfarm.com/2013/05/16/the-gervais-principle-vi-children-of-an-absent-god/

It is this strangely incomplete calculus that creates the shifting Loser world of rifts and alliances. By operating with a more complete calculus, Sociopaths are able to manipulate this world through the divide-and-conquer mechanisms. The result is that the Losers end up blaming each other for their losses, seek collective emotional resolution, and fail to adequately address the balance sheet of material rewards and losses.

To succeed, this strategy requires that Losers not look too closely at the non-emotional books. This is why, as we saw last time, divide-and-conquer is the most effective means for dealing with them, since it naturally creates emotional drama that keeps them busy while they are being manipulated.

[May 20, 2019] The dirty art of politicians entrapment: Blackmail, smear campaigns, various traps via honey or corruption, hookers, gay sex, pedophilia, or what-have-you, all or in combination

Highly recommended!
That remind me how old Kushner tried to smear his relative...
Notable quotes:
"... They are told that the daughter of a Russian billionaire plans large investments in Austria. It was said that she would like to help his party. The alleged daughter of the Russian billionaire, who is actually also Austrian, and her "friend" serve an expensive dinner. Alcohol flows freely. The pair offers a large party donation but asks for returns in form of mark ups on public contracts. ..."
"... The "Russian" female is notably very attractive with a slender build. There is a honey-trap angle here as well. This would likely inspire the boasting (in order to impress her) on the part of the wingnut politician. ..."
"... The far-right is the Troy Horse of transnational corporations and capital and already discredited neoliberal stablishment which comes now disguised under the softening label of "populists". Beware, there seems to be a coordinated effort at several blogs in the ten previous days of the European elections to whitewash the far-right. ..."
"... So this very much hints something more. Right now there is a debate of cocain being visible on the table but this accusation points more towards schnickle with a babe imho. The babe to his right is not that ugly, admittely. ..."
"... As expected the hysteria of "russian" meddling have now publicized to weaken FPÖ in the EU election. Winners? NATO/US parties. ..."
"... Seems indeed to be a honeypot aspect to the entrapment, and it's quite possible Strache stepped down at once to avoid that part to come to light, so that the public revelations would be limited to the economic shenanigans and influence-peddling level. ..."
"... Also, this goes to show that the bulk of our Western politicians, across all the political spectrum, are a bunch of mediocre and quite corrupt fools. For him not to smell that this was a setup from the very first minute, it must be that such proposals are common place all across the board - which will only reinforce my suspicion that our societies, peoples and mankind as a whole would only benefit if we fully wiped out our economic, financial and political establishment and started from scratches. ..."
"... Blackmail, smear campaigns, various traps via honey or corruption, hookers and blow, gay sex, paedofilia, or what-have-you, - all or in combination. Politicians are "all" compromised in these ways. Buck the system or threaten the status quo - whereby it gets somebody's serious attention and the shite hits the fan. ..."
"... The savages in this neoliberal order use the secret services to subvert democracy. Deception and manipulation are the means used to corrupt the public domain. They would push the most pliable and ruthless leaders into office. Catastrophe and violence and disinformation are their most powerful weapons. But I still think that political processes and elections do matter; and what counts is a struggle to improve and reform the system of government. Doing our best to protect and maintain the integrity of electoral processes is something that requires both protests and political campaigns. ..."
"... The very strong implication certainly seems to be that there may be further video of Strache sleeping with the honey pot. He obviously knows what happened that night. If there were video cameras hidden everywhere, that was obviously one of the intentions behind the sting from the outset. ..."
"... B, please do an article on the Nazi penetration of the German security services, Interior Ministry, Army, CDU etc, and links to the NSU affair, shredding of millions of documents by the Interior Ministry when demanded by the courts as evidence, links with the Board members and advisory board members of German big business especially Siemens and Deutche Bank and Bayer, etc. ..."
"... It is a wonder Strache's remark "Journalists are the biggest whores on the planet" and how he says he can subvert an entire media outlet to his political agenda by even firing the few remaining fringe elements. ..."
"... I don't think Strache is as harmless as you portray him, B. You fall for his defence strategy if you attribute all his statements to the influence of alcohol. At that time, the man was very confident that he would soon be at the levers of power, which then materialized. It remains to be proven whether he did not put into practice anything of what he talked about at that house in Ibiza. After all, he was talking about the by far most influential newspaper in Austria. ..."
"... Of course it is true that it is the neoliberal globalisers who have brought us to where we stand today. But that doesn' make people like Strache and Salvini any less dangerous. If they rise to total power, the result will be a naked dictatorship. Strache was beaten with his own weapons, you don't have to be under any illusions. ..."
"... Who could have ordered such an elaborate sting operation? ..."
"... The sophisticated operation using actors and a villa prepared with hidden cameras and microphones shows that this is hardly a normal case of dirty campaigning by political opponents. Most likely, either it was an action by a secret service or someone with deep pockets hired former secret agents. ..."
"... If it was an action by secret services, the most plausible explanation seems to be that Western secret services targeted Strache because FPÖ is one of the parties who is in favor of restoring normal relations with Russia ..."
"... François Fillon comes to mind, a French conservative candidate who also had a quite a friendly attitude towards Russia - shortly before the elections, it was revealed (at least claimed) that Fillon had given his wife ficticious employment, and Fillon lost popularity, which helped Macron enormously. ..."
"... Probably, some of the things Strache said during this sting operation were inacceptable, and Fillon may also not be innocent, but if there is a systematic selective targeting of European politicians who want to normalize relations with Russia by secret services, that would be a huge problem for democracy. ..."
"... In 2016, Joseph Mifsud invited George Papadopoulos to Rome and introduced him to "Putin's niece" with the intent of smearing Trump as "Russian puppet" and destroying his election chances. In 2017, someone (who?) invited Heinz-Christian Strache to Ibiza and introduced him to "Russian billionaire's niece" with the intent of smearing Strache as "Russian puppet" and destroying his party's election chances. Notice a pattern? ..."
"... This is a clear case of Germany interfering in Austrian elections. Austria should deport 60 German diplomats, shut down German embassy in Vienna, and impose sanctions on Germany. Also put a German girl interested in Austrian politics in jail for 18 months. ..."
"... Thinking about it, after revealing e-mail of HRC, Podesta etc. were published, their core supporters were enraged about the dirty trick and did not pay attention to the disclosed content, while for the core opponents of HRC she was already sufficiently vilified so the net change in voting intentions that can be attributed to that incident was modest. ..."
"... Anyone who does not directly have his or her family's nose in the EU trough at this point knows that the policies espoused by transatlantic puppets like Angela Merkel and Emmanuel Macron push our countries and our continent towards self-destruction. Life in Europe, post-1968 and pre-2013, has been pretty damn good. There's absolutely no good reason for us to rip up our traditions or turn into a continent of immigrants and mobile job seekers. ..."
"... As Strache explains in the video, Austrian dirty tricks are done "via another country". ..."
"... To those who fill that politics of Strache are obnoxious and that justifies entrapment, remembers that methods of that type are not improvised, and that means that there is an apparatus that does it. We noted similarities with provocations against George Papadopoulos. In the latter case the target was cautious, after all, we had to be well aware of such methods. But anyone who is despised by NATO establishment are similar group can be on the receiving end, think about Assange. ..."
May 20, 2019 | www.moonofalabama.org

During the last days a right wing politician in Austria was taken down by using an elaborate sting. Until Friday Heinz-Christian Strache was leader of the far right (but not fascist) Freedom Party of Austria (FPOe) and the Vice Chancellor of the country. On Friday morning two German papers, the Sueddeutsche Zeitung and Der Spiegel published (German) reports (English) about an old video that was made to take Strache down.

The FPOe has good connections with United Russia, the party of the Russian President Putin, and to other right-wing parties in east Europe. It's pro-Russian position has led to verbal attacks on and defamation of the party from NATO supporting and neoliberal circles.

In July 2017 Strache and his right hand man Johann Gudenus, who is also the big number in the FPOe, get invited for dinner to a rented villa on Ibiza, the Spanish tourist island in the Mediterranean. They are told that the daughter of a Russian billionaire plans large investments in Austria. It was said that she would like to help his party. The alleged daughter of the Russian billionaire, who is actually also Austrian, and her "friend" serve an expensive dinner. Alcohol flows freely. The pair offers a large party donation but asks for returns in form of mark ups on public contracts.

Unknown to Strache the villa is professionally bugged with many hidden cameras and microphones.


A scene from the video. Source: Der Falter (vid, German)

During the six hour long party several schemes get proposed by the "Russian" and are discussed. Strache rejects most of them. He insists several times that everything they plan or do must be legal and conform to the law. He says that a large donation could probably be funneled through an endowment that would then support his party. It is a gray area under Austrian party financing laws. They also discuss if the "Russian" could buy the Kronen Zeitung , Austria's powerful tabloid, and use it to prop up his party.

The evening goes on with several bottles of vodka on the table. Starche gets a bit drunk and boosts in front of the "oligarch daughter" about all his connections to rich and powerful people. He does not actually have these.

Strache says that, in exchange for help for his party, the "Russian" could get public contracts for highway building and repair. Currently most of such contracts in Austria go to the large Austrian company, STRABAG, that is owned by a neoliberal billionaire who opposes the FPOe. At that time Strache was not yet in the government and had no way to decide about such contracts.

At one point Strache seems to understand that the whole thing is a setup. But his right hand man calms him down and vouches for the "Russian". The sting ends with Strache and his companion leaving the place. The never again see the "Russian" and her co-plotter. Nothing they talked about will ever come to fruition.

Three month later Strache and his party win more than 20% in the Austrian election and form a coalition government with the conservative party OeVP led by Chancellor Sebastian Kurz. Even while the FPOe controls several ministries, it does not achieve much politically. It lacks a real program and the government's policies are mostly run by the conservatives.

Nearly two years after the evening on Ibiza, ten days before the European parliament election in which Strache's party is predicted to achieve good results, a video of the evening on Ibiza is handed to two German papers which are known to be have strong transatlanticist leanings and have previously been used for other shady 'leaks'. The papers do not hesitate to take part in the plot and publish extensive reports about the video.

After the reports appeared Strache immediately stepped down and the conservatives ended the coalition with his party. Austria will now have new elections.

On Bloomberg Leonid Bershidsky opines on the case:

Strache's discussion with the Russian oligarch's fake niece shows a propensity for dirty dealing that has nothing to do with idealistic nationalism. Nationalist populists often agitate against entrenched, corrupt elites and pledge to drain various swamps. In the videos, however, Strache and Gudenus behave like true swamp creatures, savoring rumors of drug and sex scandals in Austrian politics and discussing how to create an authoritarian media machine like Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban's.

I do not believe that the people who voted for the FPOe (and similar parties in other countries) will subscribe to that view. The politics of the main stream parties in Austria have for decades been notoriously corrupt. Compared to them Strache and his party are astonishingly clean. In the video he insists several times that everything must stay within the legal realm. Whenever the "Russian" puts forward a likely illegal scheme, Starche emphatically rejects it.

Bershidsky continues:

Strache, as one of the few nationalist populists in government in the European Union's wealthier member states, was an important member of the movement Italian Interior Minister Matteo Salvini has been trying to cobble together ahead of the European Parliament election that will take place next week. On Saturday, he was supposed to attend a Salvini-led rally in Milan with other like-minded politicians from across Europe. Instead, he was in Vienna apologizing to his wife and to Kurz and protesting pitifully that he'd been the victim of a "political assassination" -- a poisonous rain on the Italian right-winger's parade.
...
This leaves the European far right in disarray and plays into the hands of centrist and leftist forces ahead of next week's election. Salvini's unifying effort has been thoroughly undermined, ...

This is also a misreading of the case. The right-wing parties will use the case to boost their legitimacy.

Strache was obviously set up by some intelligence services, probably a German one with a British assist. The original aim was likely to blackmail him. But during the meeting on Ibiza Strache promised and did nothing illegal. Looking for potential support for his party is not a sin. Neither is discussing investments in Austria with a "daughter of a Russian oligarch." Some boosting while drunk is hardly a reason to go to jail. When the incident provided too little material to claim that Strache is corrupt, the video was held back until the right moment to politically assassinate him with the largest potential damage to his party. That moment was thought to be now.

But that Strache stepped down after the sudden media assault only makes him more convincing. The right-wing all over Europe will see him as a martyr who was politically assassinated because he worked for their cause. The issue will increase the right-wingers hate against the 'liberal' establishment. It will further motivate them: "They attack us because we are right and winning." The new far-right block Natteo Salvini will setup in the European Parliament will likely receive a record share of votes.

Establishment writers notoriously misinterpret the new right wing parties and their followers. This stand-offish sentence in the Spiegel story about Strache's party demonstrates the problem:

In the last election, the party drew significant support from the working class, in part because of his ability to simplify even the most complicated of issues and play the common man, even in his role as vice chancellor.

The implicit thesis, that the working class is too dumb to understand the "most complicated of issues", is not only incredibly snobbish but utterly false. The working class understands very well what the establishment parties have done to it and continue to do. The increasing vote share of the far-right is a direct consequence of the behavior of the neoliberal center and of the lack of real left alternatives.

Last week, before the Strache video appeared, Craig Murray put his finger on the wound:

The massive economic shock following the banking collapse of 2007–8 is the direct cause of the crisis of confidence which is affecting almost all the institutions of western representative democracy. The banking collapse was not a natural event, like a tsunami. It was a direct result of man-made systems and artifices which permitted wealth to be generated and hoarded primarily through multiple financial transactions rather than by the actual production and sale of concrete goods, and which then disproportionately funnelled wealth to those engaged in the mechanics of the transactions.
...
The rejection of the political class manifests itself in different ways and has been diverted down a number of entirely blind alleys giving unfulfilled promise of a fresh start – Brexit, Trump, Macron. As the vote share of the established political parties – and public engagement with established political institutions – falls everywhere, the chattering classes deride the political symptoms of status quo rejection by the people as "populism". It is not populism to make sophisticated arguments that undermine the received political wisdom and take on the entire weight of established media opinion.

If one wants to take down the far right one has to do so with arguments and good politics for the working class. Most people, especially working class people, have a strong sense for justice. The political assassination of Christian Strache is unjust. What was done during the 2007-8 banking crisis was utterly corrupt and also unjust. Instead of going to jail the bankers were rewarded with extreme amounts of money for their assault on the well being of the people. The public was then told that it must starve through austerity to make up for the loss of money.

While I consider myself to be a strong leftist who opposes the right wherever possible, I believe to understand why people vote for Strache's FBOe and similar parties. When one talks to these people issues of injustice and inequality always come up. The new 'populist' parties at least claim to fight against the injustice done to the common men. Unlike most of the establishment parties they seem to be still mostly clean and not yet corrupted.

In the early 1990s Strache actually flirted with violent fascists but he rejected their way. While he has far-right opinions, he and his like are no danger to our societies. If we can not accept that Strache and his followers have some legitimate causes, we will soon find us confronted with way more extreme people. The neoliberal establishment seems to do its best to achieve that.

Posted by b on May 19, 2019 at 01:10 PM | Permalink


james , May 19, 2019 1:40:31 PM | 1

b - thanks .. i agree "elaborate sting" and "the video was held back until the right moment"... clearly this was a set up.. strache says he is going to pursue this legally..

"working class people, have a strong sense for justice. The political assassination of Christian Strache is unjust." injustices are being done on a constant basis now and being justified by the msm regularly.. i think this is part of the reason people are seeking alternatives - whatever they might be... power to the people..screw the neoliberal agenda and blackmail artists that are so rampant at present...

Bratislav Metulski , May 19, 2019 1:40:51 PM | 2
Funny thing is e.g.- a German comedian Jan Böhmerman knew before. Already in April he said in a Video call live in Austian television duringthe TV-prize-giving of the trophy "Romy" that he couldn´t attend personally to receive the price because right know he was sitting together with some FPÖ-buddies in a Russian oligarch-villa on Ibiza, sniffing cocain, drinking and negotiating the takeover of the "Krone-Zeitung" (the biggest rag in Austira, smth like the "Bild" in Germany or "The sun" in Britain).

Böhmers management released a statement yesterday that Böhermann did know before but didn´t name the source he knew it from.
https://www.welt.de/politik/ausland/article193725535/FPOE-Vize-Strache-Was-Boehmermann-mit-dem-Video-zu-tun-hat.html

Cui bono?

Paul Damascene , May 19, 2019 1:43:18 PM | 3
Your article here raises a number of important issues. More or less at random:

* If I understand your characterization of your political leanings, based on this and on the perspectives MoA offers, I share many of your views. And whereas there may be a certain Schadenfreude at seeing a right-wing, B-team operator reveal himself, I agree that the forces behind the sting itself are of potentially far greater interest (and danger)..

* For every sting and smear such as this that we see, how many others take place sub rosa, corrupting our political and social landscapes, leaving no evidence that might trigger criticism or resistance?

* I'm not sure of how this plays out legally, but this seems not just to have been a sting, but entrapment, in which (if these were law enforcement agents) we could protest that the only illegal activity being proposed, was by those conducting the sting.

* If this was, as you suggest, authored by the BND, then this would be a clear instance of election "meddling" -- though not of the sort that our shining democracies are now being warned against. (At least President Putin will not be accused of conducting it, for once. That oligarch's daughter could have come from anywhere, but of course Russia.) Russia gets smeared is probably the larger aim, rather than this particularly Austrian politician.

hallelujah hinton , May 19, 2019 1:55:07 PM | 4
The "Russian" female is notably very attractive with a slender build. There is a honey-trap angle here as well. This would likely inspire the boasting (in order to impress her) on the part of the wingnut politician.
somebody , May 19, 2019 1:56:55 PM | 5
I think the word is protofascist. b. you have got a blind spot seeing geopolitics everywhere. Truth is most of this is simply a battle of billionaires. The key to understand the Ibiza video is the product placement. Everybody there drinks Red Bull plus alcohol (I am not sure about the alcohol the loss of control of the politicians who are present suggests cocaine).

The owner of Red Bull is an Austrian billionaire called Dietrich Mateschitz. Mateschitz is a right wing crank building a media empire in Austria including an "investigative platform" called addendum that is something like the Austrian version of Breitbart.

For some reason "addendum" began to shoot against Rene Benzko, an Austrian real estate billionaire, who intends to take over Kronenzeitung.

And guess what, Rene Benzko was mentioned in the video "as a friend", and a large part of the conversation centered on taking over Kronenzeitung something Rene Benzko is involved in.

Strache, Vice Chancellor of Austria, explained in the video for every Austrian to understand, that his party's scheme is based on accepting illegal contributions via a ngo, and lowering taxes in return. According to what he says in the video he also intends to charge for water by selling the right to the Latvian/Russien "niece of a Russian oligarch" or someone else prepared to pay to his party's ngo.

Anybody who is not a billionaire voting for FPÖ after this must be braindead.

Arioch , May 19, 2019 1:58:49 PM | 6
> with United Russia, the party of the Russian President Putin

Putin himself though stresses his non involvement in that party, he also tried to bootstrap organizations that could supplant or even challenge U.R. at least in some niches.

While U.R. probably is party of Russian ruling elites, it is hardly one-man-show of LDPR/Zhirinovsky kind and whether Putin is "gray cardinal" of U.R. is very questionable.

Sasha , May 19, 2019 2:05:52 PM | 7
It is said that children and drunk people always say the truth... Why is it not to be taken into account what he said once drunk enough?

For to be a strong leftist, b, you spend a great effort in discharging this man, while whitewashing the far-right saying they are no danger for our societies and assuring that they are clean, when that is a thing you do not know since they have not had yet the possibility to rule.

They are neither cleaner nor inocuous for our societies. For starters they have chosen as scapegoat the migrants when who is to blame for the wave of migration is the US, NATO and their imperial ambitions, so as to throw poor against poor and that way the elites could continue quietly looting us, while we fight each other. You will never heard anything agsint banks ans elites from anybody in the far-right.

FYI, it is not Matteo Salvini who is forming a coalition of the far-right to conflude to European elections, but it is Bannon from his HQ in a Cisterciense monastery in Italy who is commanding this operation. Salvini is really a piece, having supported Guiado and the Venezuelan coup intend, and said what he would do with the Yellow Vests , "I don't go to the Yellow Vests with Molotov cocktails, if anything, I put them in prison" ...

Then it is AfD, who goes also in the block, whose members have claimed the Germans should be proud of the performance of the German Army during both WW....

Then Vox, financed by MEK and Israeli lobby and promoted by Bannon and the WH, who only wear clear neoliberal economic policies in their, for the rest, confusing program.

The best to test what the far-right will do in Europe is taking a look at what is happening in Brazil during these last days, an attack on education and research as if it was a military target ...This, after the moving of the embassy to Jerusalem and wide support to coup d´etat in Venezuela...He is also widely supported and financed by the US and Zionists.

The far-right is the Troy Horse of transnational corporations and capital and already discredited neoliberal stablishment which comes now disguised under the softening label of "populists". Beware, there seems to be a coordinated effort at several blogs in the ten previous days of the European elections to whitewash the far-right.

Bratislav Metulski , May 19, 2019 2:20:38 PM | 8
@4 hallelujah hinton
https://www.heise.de/tp/features/Neuwahlen-Der-gefeierte-Stratege-Kurz-hatte-keine-Optionen-mehr-4425362.html
Telepolis one of the oldest and biggest non-commercial online news and discussion platforms in Germany states in the following article, commenting on his statement at his resignation declaration:

"Glaubt er, man wäre bei Alkohol nachsichtiger? Offenbar schien er sich betrunken kaum mehr im Griff zu haben - und dies ist wohlgemerkt seine Erklärung für die Äußerungen im Video. Erst gegen Ende beginnt er eigenes Fehlverhalten einzuräumen und bittet insbesondere seine Frau um Verzeihung, mit der er ein wenige Monate altes Kind hat. Kenner Straches ahnten an dieser Stelle bereits, dass dieser sich bereits für Dinge entschuldigt, die zu diesem Zeitpunkt der Öffentlichkeit noch gar nicht bekannt sind."

Does he (Strache) really assume he would get more indulgence by blaming it on the alcolhol? Obviously when being drunken he wasn´t in control of himself anymore - and this is actually his explanation for his statements in the video. Somehow at the end he finally begins admitting own misconduct and especially asks his wife for forgiveness, with which he has a few months old child. Experts on Strache suspected from this moment on, that he apologized for things which at this moment are not known to the public, yet"

So this very much hints something more. Right now there is a debate of cocain being visible on the table but this accusation points more towards schnickle with a babe imho. The babe to his right is not that ugly, admittely.

Jackrabbit , May 19, 2019 2:26:38 PM | 9
somebody @5:
battle of billionaires.... Anybody who is not a billionaire voting for FPÖ after this must be braindead.
Anyone who believes voting will change anything is braindead. Only supporting protest Movements (like Gillet Jeune) and free press/citizen journalism (Wikileaks/Assange) will have any real effect.
Zanon , May 19, 2019 2:30:32 PM | 0
Great piece - I dont see how Strache actually made anything wrong or atleast nothing not normal to politicians that constantly seek out support by big, powerful people. Most likely the deep state in Austria struck FPÖ just like FBI struck Trump.

As expected the hysteria of "russian" meddling have now publicized to weaken FPÖ in the EU election. Winners? NATO/US parties.

Arioch , May 19, 2019 2:36:33 PM | 1
@hallelujah hinton #4

Also notice how she pretended to be a niece.

Not some very close relative like daughter or sister, which may be fearsome, as "russian mafia" oligarch could be expected to "protect" her of ladykillers viciously. But also not some far relative who would be seen alien and have no financial support.

Just enough distance to be safe to hit on and try to share the oligarch's money. It was both honey&gold trap.

Sasha , May 19, 2019 2:38:57 PM | 2
Anyone who believes voting will change anything is braindead.

@Posted by: Jackrabbit | May 19, 2019 2:26:38 PM | 9

If voting would be such a waste, why would had taken so hard and long to achieve voting for minorities and women? Why the parties go to such efforts to campaign and disguise themselves as wolves with sheepskin like the far-right?

Why would certain forces need to go to such editorial coordinated efforts through their several blogs out there to give an impression of certain candidates which is opposite to what they really are? Wikilieaks/Assange are part of this efforts, btw

Clueless Joe , May 19, 2019 2:44:05 PM | 4
Metulski:

Seems indeed to be a honeypot aspect to the entrapment, and it's quite possible Strache stepped down at once to avoid that part to come to light, so that the public revelations would be limited to the economic shenanigans and influence-peddling level.

Also, this goes to show that the bulk of our Western politicians, across all the political spectrum, are a bunch of mediocre and quite corrupt fools. For him not to smell that this was a setup from the very first minute, it must be that such proposals are common place all across the board - which will only reinforce my suspicion that our societies, peoples and mankind as a whole would only benefit if we fully wiped out our economic, financial and political establishment and started from scratches.

Sasha , May 19, 2019 2:44:10 PM | 5
Spanish Colonel ( ret.) Pedro Baños, who was postulated for head of the CNI by the Socialist government of Pedro Sanchez, was object of slander campiagn as "pro-Russian" by the Spanish cluster of Integrity Initiative, only for declarations on the prejudice of sanctions for Spain, and nobody made such noise....
hallelujah hinton , May 19, 2019 3:03:31 PM | 6
Blackmail, smear campaigns, various traps via honey or corruption, hookers and blow, gay sex, paedofilia, or what-have-you, - all or in combination. Politicians are "all" compromised in these ways. Buck the system or threaten the status quo - whereby it gets somebody's serious attention and the shite hits the fan.

Enforcement and and penalties are selective. Selective enforcement. It's how "The Law" operates. Not defending the wingnut pig in the article. I appreciate Sasha's Trojan Horse allegory above.

the pair , May 19, 2019 3:16:52 PM | 7
wow...a bunch of elitist neoliberals with contempt for anyone lacking 10 zeroes on their paychecks and zero useful policies use "russian collusion" to entrap and embarrass a pseudo-right wing politician. who could ever imagine such a scenario? and why learn from the masses you represent when james o'keefe gives you all the inspiration you need?

but at least they blocked the ascension of someone who would trade political favors for money. that kind of nonsense simply won't do in western society.

karlof1 , May 19, 2019 3:24:47 PM | 8
Thanks for this explanation, b! I first saw this reported at Geroman's Twitter and used machine translation of the article he linked, but it lacked the context which you provided. This incident is subsumed within the larger conflict that's trying to keep EU from combining with BRI/EAEU, which means its roots/culprits are NATO/Outlaw US Empire--it points to desperation on their part.
Jackrabbit , May 19, 2019 3:25:34 PM | 9
the pair @17

Some will fail to see the sarcasm. Best to use the /sarc tag.

somebody , May 19, 2019 3:34:51 PM | 0
Posted by: hallelujah hinton | May 19, 2019 1:55:07 PM | 4

Sorry, you don't see the Latvian/Russian woman. You see Gudenus' wife who is from Serbia. Whatever the publishing papers got, it was a copy. More will come out.

Copeland , May 19, 2019 4:01:44 PM | 1
The savages in this neoliberal order use the secret services to subvert democracy. Deception and manipulation are the means used to corrupt the public domain. They would push the most pliable and ruthless leaders into office. Catastrophe and violence and disinformation are their most powerful weapons. But I still think that political processes and elections do matter; and what counts is a struggle to improve and reform the system of government. Doing our best to protect and maintain the integrity of electoral processes is something that requires both protests and political campaigns.
BM , May 19, 2019 4:14:36 PM | 2
So this very much hints something more. Right now there is a debate of cocain being visible on the table but this accusation points more towards schnickle with a babe imho. The babe to his right is not that ugly, admittely.
Posted by: Bratislav Metulski | May 19, 2019 2:20:38 PM | 8

The very strong implication certainly seems to be that there may be further video of Strache sleeping with the honey pot. He obviously knows what happened that night. If there were video cameras hidden everywhere, that was obviously one of the intentions behind the sting from the outset.

---

On the issue of "populism" and right-wing parties I confess I have a problem. I certainly want to see the Establishment thrashed, and especially in next week's EU elections, and there is no question that at the moment the right-wing parties have far more potential to upset the establishment than the left. If "Populist" parties are able to radically upset the EU Parliament, that should bring a much-needed hammer and axe to the anti-populist activities of the EU, and hopefully lead to the breakup of the EU.

On the other hand, unlike B, I do have extremely strong worries about the rising power of the far right and their connections to Nazis and neo-Nazis. I am concerned - even without the involvement of Bannon, but far more so with - that the rise of "populism" is a calculated policy of a Nazi segment of the Establishment that is designed specifically to usher in an international Nazi movement across Europe and Latin America under the leadership of and proxies of the - ever more and more Nazi behaving - US (which itself is in so many very real ways descended from Adolf Hitler's Nazi Party and the Japanese war criminals including Bush's family, tight connections with Nazi war criminals in the CIA, and historical leadership figures in the CIA). The large scale and extremely high level infiltration of hardcore Nazis in the German security services, Interior Ministry, Army, and CDU politics is a ticking timebomb waiting for its moment. There seems to be similar high level Nazi infiltration in many other countries.

We have to be careful what we wish for!

B, please do an article on the Nazi penetration of the German security services, Interior Ministry, Army, CDU etc, and links to the NSU affair, shredding of millions of documents by the Interior Ministry when demanded by the courts as evidence, links with the Board members and advisory board members of German big business especially Siemens and Deutche Bank and Bayer, etc.

Sasha , May 19, 2019 4:21:50 PM | 3
On how there is real danger with these wolves on sheepskin who only try to divide and conquer the working masses of the world, this old article by Ho Chi Minh on the importance of class conscience and the great labor of the University of the East in the former USSR to get workers of the world conscous and united in the common struggle. Also on the importance of having the right to vote:
Colonialism is a leech with two suckers, one of which sucks the metropolitan proletariat and the other that of the colonies. If we want to kill this monster, we must cut off both suckers at the same time. If only one is cut off, the other will continue to suck the blood of the proletariat, the animal will continue to live, and the cut–off sucker will grow again. The Russian Revolution has grasped this truth clearly. That is why it is not satisfied with making fine platonic speeches and drafting "humanitarian" resolutions in favor of oppressed peoples, but it teaches them to struggle; and helps them spiritually, as proclaimed by Lenin in his theses on the colonial question. To the Baku Congress, twenty–one Eastern nations sent delegates. Representatives of Western workers' parties also participated in the work of this congress. For the first time, the proletariat of the conquering Western States and that of the subject Eastern countries fraternally joined hands and deliberated in common on the best means to defeat their common enemy, imperialism .

Following this historic congress, despite internal and external difficulties, revolutionary Russia has never hesitated to come to the help of peoples awakened by its heroic and victorious revolution. One of its first important acts was the founding of the University of the East.(...)

The sixty–two nationalities represented at the University form a "Commune." Its chairman and functionaries are elected every three months by all the students.

A student delegate takes part in the economic and administrative management of the University. All must regularly and in turn work in the kitchen, the library, the club, etc. All "misdemeanors" and disputes are judged and settled by an elected tribunal in the presence of all comrades. Once a week, the "Commune" holds a meeting to discuss the international political and economic situation. From time to time, meetings and evening parties are organized where the amateur artists introduce the art and culture of their country.

The fact that the Communists not only treat the "inferior natives of the colonies" like brothers, but that they get them to participate in the political life of the country, is highly characteristic of the "barbarity" of the Bolsheviks. Treated in their native country as "submissive subjects" or "protéges," having no other right but that to pay taxes, the Eastern students, who are neither electors nor eligible for election in their own country, from whom the right to express their political opinion is withdrawn, in the Soviet Union take part in the election of the Soviets and have the right to send their representatives to the Soviets. Let our brothers of the colonies who vainly seek a change of nationality make a comparison between bourgeois democracy and proletarian democracy.

These students have suffered themselves and have witnessed the sufferings of others. All have lived under the yoke of "high civilization," all have been victims of exploitation and oppression by foreign capitalists . Moreover, they passionately long to acquire knowledge and to study. They are serious and full of enthusiasm. They are entirely different from the frequenters of the boulevards of the Latin Quarter, the Eastern students in Paris, Oxford, and Berlin. It can be said without exaggeration that under the roof of this University is the future of the colonial peoples.

The colonial countries of the Near and Far East, stretching from Syria to Korea, cover an extent of more than 15 million square kilometers and have more than 1,200 million inhabitants. All these immense countries are now under the yoke of capitalism and imperialism. Although their considerable numbers should be their strength, these submissive peoples have never yet made any serious attempts to free themselves from this yoke. Not yet having realized the value of international solidarity, they have not known how to unite for the struggle. Relationships between their countries are not yet established as they are among the peoples of Europe and America. They possess gigantic strength and do not yet realize it. The University of the East, assembling all the young, active, and intelligent leaders of the colonized countries, has fulfilled a great task, namely:

-It teaches to the future vanguard militants the principles of class struggle, confused in their minds by race conflicts and patriarchal customs.
-It establishes between the proletarian vanguard of the colonies a close contact with the Western proletariat, thus preparing the way for the close and effective cooperation which will alone ensure the final victory of the international working class.
-It teaches the colonized people, hitherto separated from one another, to know one another and to unite, by creating the bases of a future union of Eastern countries, one of the wings of the proletarian revolution.
-It sets the proletariat of colonialist countries and example of what they can and must do in favor of their oppressed brothers
.

This is why it is needed to throw the workers from the West against the migrants from the East and South, to avoid the invincible force they would constitute together. This dirty work is made by the far-right in the name of corporate liberal elites. They can play that they fight each other, but as soon as they get seats at the European Parliament, you will find the previous allegedly opponents all together aligned in the same Eurogroup. Time to time.

Bacchante , May 19, 2019 4:38:44 PM | 4
It is a wonder Strache's remark "Journalists are the biggest whores on the planet" and how he says he can subvert an entire media outlet to his political agenda by even firing the few remaining fringe elements. Yet here we can still talk about he was drunk, how his being set up was unjust, and how the poor guy will have to miss his lovers' right cause in Italy. Those vulgar masses are at it again! There can be no justification about the masses' support of far-right causes and the clowns like him. If you think otherwise it is the likes of moonofalabama next in line to be "fired", or eliminated. Legitimize their causes and it is Germany in 1920s all over again.

Two wrongs do not make a right, unfortunately.

Walter , May 19, 2019 4:56:04 PM | 5
"Left/right", I agree, is nearly without semantic value. Nevertheless class interests remain...how is it that this is so? Think about that, comrades.

And then consider wsws report about "At the annual meeting of the Bundeswehr reserve in autumn 2016, Veith announced: "I dream that in 2026 there will be a provincial regiment in each state with a charismatic commander, a troop flag and an organization of between 800 and 2,000 reservists to support the police and the Bundeswehr in emergency situations." " see> "German government prepares troops for domestic missions" @ wsws.org

Considering the overall aspects, it's rational to expect all parties in Europe to make plans, is it not? Of course the working class is not permitted to make such plans...is it?

Pnyx , May 19, 2019 5:04:18 PM | 6
I don't think Strache is as harmless as you portray him, B. You fall for his defence strategy if you attribute all his statements to the influence of alcohol. At that time, the man was very confident that he would soon be at the levers of power, which then materialized. It remains to be proven whether he did not put into practice anything of what he talked about at that house in Ibiza. After all, he was talking about the by far most influential newspaper in Austria.

Of course it is true that it is the neoliberal globalisers who have brought us to where we stand today. But that doesn' make people like Strache and Salvini any less dangerous. If they rise to total power, the result will be a naked dictatorship. Strache was beaten with his own weapons, you don't have to be under any illusions.

I agree with you that this is not the big setback for the right the mainstream parties dream of. But it won't help the fascists in spe in the future either.

Adrian E. , May 19, 2019 5:25:25 PM | 7
Who could have ordered such an elaborate sting operation?

A first association might be the dirty, deceptive campaigning SPÖ used against Sebastian Kurz (ÖVP) - the Silberstein affair -, but I think the methods that were chosen are too different to make a common source likely, Strache was targeted in a much more sophisticated way. The Silberstein affair may, however, be the reason why the tapes have partially been published now rather than before the last Austrian elections - at that time, dirty campaigning might have been discredited too much for the tape to have the desired effect,

The sophisticated operation using actors and a villa prepared with hidden cameras and microphones shows that this is hardly a normal case of dirty campaigning by political opponents. Most likely, either it was an action by a secret service or someone with deep pockets hired former secret agents.

If it was an action by secret services, the most plausible explanation seems to be that Western secret services targeted Strache because FPÖ is one of the parties who is in favor of restoring normal relations with Russia.

François Fillon comes to mind, a French conservative candidate who also had a quite a friendly attitude towards Russia - shortly before the elections, it was revealed (at least claimed) that Fillon had given his wife ficticious employment, and Fillon lost popularity, which helped Macron enormously.

Probably, some of the things Strache said during this sting operation were inacceptable, and Fillon may also not be innocent, but if there is a systematic selective targeting of European politicians who want to normalize relations with Russia by secret services, that would be a huge problem for democracy.

In the case of Strache and FPÖ, a different motive may also be plausible. There are connections between FPÖ and neonazis, and there are, in my view, legitimate concerns that Strache is too close to such far-right networks. I don't think it is good when right-wing populists whose rise is mainly due to the unpopularity of the neoliberal elites are equated with Nazis too quickly.

But in the case of FPÖ, this is less far-fetched than in the case of other European right-wing parties - historically, Nazis played an important role in FPÖ in post-war Austria, and it is one of the current right-wing parties that probably has more connections to the extreme right (e.g. via Burschenschaften) than others. I could imagine that someone might have ordered and financed the sting operation out of antifascist principles. While I may recognize the motivation as ethical and even partially agree with it, I don't think the right means were chosen, and such dirty methods can backfire.

Michael Droy , May 19, 2019 5:33:51 PM | 8
"While I consider myself to be a strong leftist who opposes the right wherever possible, I believe to understand why people vote for Strache's FBOe and similar parties"

Quite. It seems to me that only the Right and the Left have a clue right now, because they have an instinctive mistrust of what they are told in the media.
People like "b" and Craig Murray are to be thanked for explaining that to us middling voters.

You miss the most glaring "injustice". That which shows that GDP in most western countries had doubled in the last 30 odd years, that earnings for the top quartile have gone up by factors of 3 or 4. But that median earnings in US are unchanged, and in say UK are only up 10% or so (unless one is seeking to buy one's own house or flat).

All the improvements in inequality from 1930s to 1980s have been reversed in full. "Populists" (or better "anti-elitists") are driven mostly by sheer anger at how a small group had taken all the Economic gains of the last 35 years.

somebody , May 19, 2019 5:35:30 PM | 9
Posted by: Pnyx | May 19, 2019 5:04:18 PM | 26

I don't know what b. saw in the video what I saw was a discussion of an Orban like take over of Austria by FPÖ.

In other news people are arguing the following
- who will profit most - ÖVP
- why was the video not published after it was produced in 2017 - because ÖVP wanted a coalition with FPÖ
- why was it published now - ÖVP has been renting advertising space for weeks for an election in September (renting before the video came out), Sebastian Kurz will be the saviour who will get the disappointed FPÖ vote
add
- why the emphasis on Kronenzeitung,
who were the people producing the video
why Red Bull everywhere - Red Bull media empire billionaire Dietrich Mateschitz publicly announced that he would back Sebastian Kurz in 2017

ÖVP/Kurz/Mateschitz have moved so far to the right that there is not much space for FPÖ anyway. His problems will return when he needs another coalition.

brian , May 19, 2019 5:37:28 PM | 0
'The FPOe has good connections with United Russia, the party of the Russian President Putin, and to other right-wing parties in east Europe'

other?

Erelis , May 19, 2019 6:09:06 PM | 1
While the right wing parties in Europe don't have a problem with Putin, it does seem that much of the Western European establish has gone full McCarthyite hysterical where they see any contact for any reason with a Russian is automatically criminal. Aside from being a setup it relied the underlying false flag of presenting the woman as a Russian (and hence guility of some crime against the Austrians).

In fact, a suggestion for a column--personal impressions on whether everyday Europeans are falling for anti-Russian propaganda. Polls in the US indicate that Americans simply do not care (they could believe it, but not effecting their daily lives).

S , May 19, 2019 6:36:42 PM | 2
1. The ER (United Russia) party was founded by Sergey Shoygu, Yuriy Luzhkov, and Mintimer Shaymiev. Its chairman is Dmitriy Medvedev, not Vladimir Putin. Putin is not even a member of ER. Putin is the leader of ONF (All-Russia People's Front), which is a nation-wide discussion platform for politicians, professionals, and NGOs.

2. Russian billionaire Igor Makarov denies having a niece: "I was the only child in the family." ( Forbes.ru , in Russian).

3. In 2016, Joseph Mifsud invited George Papadopoulos to Rome and introduced him to "Putin's niece" with the intent of smearing Trump as "Russian puppet" and destroying his election chances. In 2017, someone (who?) invited Heinz-Christian Strache to Ibiza and introduced him to "Russian billionaire's niece" with the intent of smearing Strache as "Russian puppet" and destroying his party's election chances. Notice a pattern?

4. This is a clear case of Germany interfering in Austrian elections. Austria should deport 60 German diplomats, shut down German embassy in Vienna, and impose sanctions on Germany. Also put a German girl interested in Austrian politics in jail for 18 months.

Piotr Berman , May 19, 2019 6:37:32 PM | 3
Thinking about it, after revealing e-mail of HRC, Podesta etc. were published, their core supporters were enraged about the dirty trick and did not pay attention to the disclosed content, while for the core opponents of HRC she was already sufficiently vilified so the net change in voting intentions that can be attributed to that incident was modest.

Leaving aside the discussion of of various factors in that election, this public reaction is typical. Actually, in both cases the core supporters may be energized by the suspicion that this trick was performed by a foreign government. I do not think that there is a particular hostility toward Germany in Felix Austria, but the to the right wing Merkel government is like red cape for a bull. The women who unleashed a wave of refugees. On top of that, traditionally major parties of Austria gained reputation of dirty patronage, so the voters who care about that issue probably do not vote for them.

I do not expect Austrians to demand expulsions of German diplomats -- interference in our democracy -- or other sanctions, but nevertheless it stinks. Making sting operations on politicians has corrupt potential even if it is done by domestic law enforcement, but foreign intelligence services really do not have any excuse.

Thinking about it, the stings against George Papadopoulos described in his book were remarkably similar.

Piotr Berman , May 19, 2019 6:45:53 PM | 4
Great minds think alike, S!

That said, Austrians have a reputation of good manners etc., they will not unload their frustration on a girl. BTW, why there are suspicions of Germany being involved? Again, even extremist Austrians probably would like to have some proof before doing anything. I guess, America is indeed exceptional.

Uncoy , May 19, 2019 6:49:33 PM | 5
For all those of you whining about the corruption of Strache, this is how business and politics is done in Austria. Strache was just talking about the FPÖ's fair share after an election which they would win.

This all starts with Austrian's Presidential Election of 2016. The FPÖ won the presidential election a couple of years ago in May 2016. After the bell, postal votes overturned it! – postal votes more than 90% in favour of the establishment candidate Van der Bellen. Some constituencies full of Van der Bellen votes turned out to have 148% turn out. There was a court case by the FPÖ about procedure and hinting at ballot falsification. The case was judged by a (non-corrupt but under serious pressure) judge to have enough merit that the elections had to be annulled and the election rerun six months later . Austria went without a president at all for six months!

For six months the mainstream Austrian media campaigned non-stop against the FPÖ and Norbert Hofer. Huge efforts were made for voter turnout (it included huge bussing of potential anti-FPÖ constituencies and bribing pensioners to vote against the FPÖ via parties and cakes). With all of that, Van der Bellen scraped in on 4 December 2016, by 348,231 votes. Despite the non-stop anti-FPÖ propaganda and banging on drums, votes for Hofer's fell by less than 100,000 (95,993 votes to be exact). It's just that with six months to prepare the establishment had found enough "dead souls" to win the second round.

In the parliamentary elections of 15 October 2017, the FPÖ were set to win a strong majority in parliament. To defeat the FPÖ and Strache, the conservatives (Völkspartei) were forced to elect a male model non-university graduate 30 year old sex symbol with no work experience outside of politics as party leader. Of course Sebastian Kurz was mainly a figurehead for establishment figures in the venerable Völkspartei. Kurz does have a mind of his own though (I had the opportunity to interact with him personally at a local political discussion group in 2015) and it's hard to know exactly how much of his policy is dictated to him and how much is off his own bat.

Going back to Austrian corruption, there are enormous sums at stake. There is a long entrenched system of corruption in the establishment parties, the Völkspartei and the SPÖ. Strabag does win most of the government contracts. Favour is regularly granted on quid pro basis. The media landscape is very partisan and mostly for sale. Kurz's spiritual predecessor as a powerful head of the Völkspartei if not direct predecessor Wolfgang Schüssel was forced to retire from politics in 2011 due to never-ending corruption scandals. Schüssel's longstanding finance minister Karl-Heinz Grasser was caught carrying bags of cash to Lichtenstein and is still under investigation. If his mother-in-law were not the richest woman in Austria (Swarovski Crystal) and devoted to her daughter (Grasser's wife), he would long ago have been in jail.

Politically, Grasser knows where a lot of the bodies are buried from the Schlüssel political machine so either he has to be kept out of jail or he may take others down with him. In elite Austrian circles turning informant would be considered unsportsmanlike so there's an uneasy truce still fought to this day in the courts where Grasser is kept out of jail via procedural methods (detect a pattern) and Grasser doesn't rat out the others.

Strache's sin is not planning to use the advantages which accrue to the governing Austrian party but getting caught out talking about it. Strache is something of a lout, not terribly loyal (he was the Brutus who threw Jörg Haider under the bus in 2005 in a palace putsch). He's a smoker in power who used his power to overturn some very positive anti-smoking laws. But he's less corrupt than any of his equivalents in the Völkspartei and is only a nose ahead of the his equivalents in the SPÖ. His politics and policies of Austria for Austrians are pretty simple. Hence people vote for these policies.

Here's a sample of the SPÖ's wares in the 2010 Vienna elections:

The FPÖ has historically been weakest in Vienna but in 2010 they took 27% of the vote in this SPÖ stronghold, their first step in what has been a steady march to power.

Anyone who does not directly have his or her family's nose in the EU trough at this point knows that the policies espoused by transatlantic puppets like Angela Merkel and Emmanuel Macron push our countries and our continent towards self-destruction. Life in Europe, post-1968 and pre-2013, has been pretty damn good. There's absolutely no good reason for us to rip up our traditions or turn into a continent of immigrants and mobile job seekers. We instinctively abhor what is happening to our nations. By nature Strache is inclined this way himself (he's no great thinker) and has the good sense to ride the wave.

somebody , May 19, 2019 7:11:44 PM | 6
Posted by: Piotr Berman | May 19, 2019 6:45:53 PM | 34

As Strache explains in the video, Austrian dirty tricks are done "via another country".

somebody , May 19, 2019 7:21:16 PM | 7
For all those of you whining about the corruption of Strache, this is how business and politics is done in Austria. Strache was just talking about the FPÖ's fair share after an election which they would win.

So why did he step down?

Here's a sample of the SPÖ's wares in the 2010 Vienna elections:

You mean FPÖ wares .

Hoarsewhisperer , May 19, 2019 7:29:57 PM | 8
...
"This stand-offish sentence in the Spiegel story about Strache's party demonstrates the problem:"

In the last election, the party drew significant support from the working class, in part because of his ability to simplify even the most complicated of issues and play the common man, even in his role as vice chancellor.

"The implicit thesis, that the working class is too dumb to understand the "most complicated of issues", is not only incredibly snobbish but utterly false..."

I can't agree that Spiegel's attitude to Strache's party is condescending toward the working class. Right-wing parties tend to spout a lot of aggressively authoritarian spin tank bullshit to encourage voters to tune out when a R-w politician is telling them what to think. If Strache is adept at separating fact from fiction and superfluous verbiage, then people would appreciate his candor.

In a Democracy, and in theory at least, politicians are supposed to represent and defend the views of the people who voted for them, not vested intere$t$. Or so we've been led to believe...

I'll always remember Spiegel as the folks whose photo-journalists torpedoed Crooked Hillary's feeble-minded Cheonan (NK-SK) bullshit. That story vanished overnight. It's not even referred to in NK smear campaigns. Dead & buried.

somebody , May 19, 2019 8:15:54 PM | 9
Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | May 19, 2019 7:29:57 PM | 38

In a Democracy, and in theory at least, politicians are supposed to represent and defend the views of the people who voted for them, not vested intere$t$. Or so we've been led to believe...

You are making this theory up.

Let's take the American constitution .

We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity,

That's it.

The German constitution is absolutely clear that members of parliament represent all of the people (ie different views and interests) and are bound by their own judgement and conscience only.

As we are discussing Austria, lets see what the Austrian constitution says. Austria has "linguistic and cultural diversity" and the protection of its grown native peoples in its constitution, this means Slovenian, Croatian, Czech, Slovakian, Roma and Hungarian. So the Austrian constitution has a concept of a multinational state where different peoples grow and are protected even if the Viennese "Stammtisch" does not like them.

There is no "democratic theory" that suggests representatives should follow the uninformed and prejudiced views of their electorate against their better judgement.

Strache seems to have specialized in "fake news" - ie mostly invented stuff claiming Muslims, immigrants or whoever were treated in a better way than native Austrians or threatened native Austrians.

It is a very convenient technique when you plan to cut social services, you have someone to blame.

Piotr Berman , May 19, 2019 9:05:45 PM | 0
To those who fill that politics of Strache are obnoxious and that justifies entrapment, remembers that methods of that type are not improvised, and that means that there is an apparatus that does it. We noted similarities with provocations against George Papadopoulos. In the latter case the target was cautious, after all, we had to be well aware of such methods. But anyone who is despised by NATO establishment are similar group can be on the receiving end, think about Assange.

[May 19, 2019] Obama s Top FBI Lawyer Distances Himself From Steele Dossier As DOJ Investigation Looms

Notable quotes:
"... James Baker, meanwhile, told Lawfare's Benjamin Wittes last week that he's 'nervous' about the DOJ Inspector General's ongoing investigation into FBI/DOJ conduct surrounding the 2016 election. ..."
"... The Steele Dossier is the most amateurish piece of garbage they could think of. It was born out of some comments made by Trump during the debates when both he and his opponents started talking about hand size. ..."
"... When and if Barr and Horowitz get the information compiled, this is going to look worse than a school election of a class president for the 9th grade. Mostly testosterone and no where to put it. ..."
"... Ultimate CYA swamp creature. What ever happened to the "Comey Memo"? Has anybody actually seen it? Was it written on Windows? Can we see the metadata to prove when it was written? or was it penned on a bar napkin, and can be edited at any time. ..."
"... This guy is a lawyer. He owed a duty to inform the judge that his bosses were lying about the warrant. He owed a duty to counsel his bosses to make them stop what they were doing and consider if it was a violation. ..."
"... Unless he did those two things, he should go to jail and also be disbarred and also be subject to civil suits for those who had to pay attorney fees during the investigation. ..."
"... Why are they bending over backwards to protect the British, who were the real interferers in the American election. Clinton mob-CIA-MI6-Steele-Pablo Miller-Skripal-Steele-Clinton mob. ..."
"... Recall the Podesta email, re: DNC "hack": We're gonna make an example of this guy. So, they seem to know who it is that stole the emails, and they are going to "make an example" of him. And do recall the statement of Donna Brazile, who expressed fear for her own safety in the wake of the Seth Rich murder: "you don't know what these people are capable of". ..."
"... When listening to an account of an event on TV or written in a blurb on the internet, always ask, why do they want us to know this stuff? The answer is usually so they can hide what they are really doing. ..."
May 19, 2019 | www.zerohedge.com

Obama's Top FBI Lawyer Distances Himself From Steele Dossier As DOJ Investigation Looms

by Tyler Durden Sun, 05/19/2019 - 13:11 759 SHARES

James Baker - the Obama FBI's top attorney (general counsel) said on Friday that he was skeptical about the Steele dossier, and "concerned" about its veracity when the agency received it prior to the 2016 US election, according to the Daily Caller 's Chuck Ross.

" It was more information that we viewed, that I viewed, skeptically from the outset , and I was concerned about it and had a jaundiced eye, or looked at it with a jaundiced eye right from the outset," Baker told MSNBC 's Chuck Todd, adding "Steele was and had been a source that we thought was reliable. He's reporting all this information. It looks alarming. We took it seriously, but we tried to vet it. "

The dossier - a collection of memos compiled by an ex-British spy funded by Hillary Clinton's 2016 campaign and the DNC - was used by the FBI to obtain a Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act warrant to spy on Trump campaign aide Carter Page. Steele alleged that Page provided the Trump campaign a Kremlin backchannel during the election.

Baker also told Todd that he thinks the FISA warrants against Page would have been granted without the dossier, and took a pregnant pause when asked if the dossier was used to obtain FISA warrants on other people - saying "I don't think I should comment on that, I'm not sure what else the government has confirmed," and adding " I don't want to confirm or deny anything about other potential FISA applications. "

Watch:

https://www.youtube.com/embed/ckBuIN5kz1w

Meanwhile, Obama's former intel chiefs are at odds over who exactly pushed the dossier .

According to Fox News , an email chain exists which indicates that Comey told bureau subordinates that Brennan insisted on the dossier's inclusion in the intelligence community assessment (ICA) on Russian interference . Also interesting is that the dossier was referred to as "crown material" in the emails - a possible reference to the fact that Steele is a former British spy.

In a statement to Fox, however, a former CIA official "put the blame squarely on Comey ."

Comey, meanwhile, has attacked Attorney General William Barr for investigating him, tweeting on Friday "The AG should stop sliming his own Department. If there are bad facts, show us, or search for them professionally and then tell us what you found."

Barr, has launched a wide-ranging investigation into FBI conduct during the 2016 election, making him public enemy #1 to the left . In a Friday interview with Fox News , Barr said that the use of the Steele Dossier in the FISA warrant was a "very unusual situation," especially one "that on its face had a number of clear mistakes and a somewhat jejue analysis. And to use that to conduct counterintelligence against the American political campaign would be a strange development."

https://www.youtube.com/embed/sZBb8uMoqdI?start=268

James Baker, meanwhile, told Lawfare's Benjamin Wittes last week that he's 'nervous' about the DOJ Inspector General's ongoing investigation into FBI/DOJ conduct surrounding the 2016 election.

Baker made clear that he wanted to speak "as openly as I possibly can" about the origin of the FBI's investigation into Donald Trump - " to reassure the American people that it was done for lawful, legitimate reasons, and was apolitical, " according to the Washington Examiner 's Jerry Dunleavy.

Things are getting hot in DC and it's only May...


youshallnotkill , 56 minutes ago link

Things you will never read here, but hey, this is from the "failing" NYT so clearly fake news ...

Anti-money laundering investigators at Deutsche Bank flagged to bank executives multiple suspicious transactions on President Donald Trump and Jared Kushner's accounts in 2016 and 2017.

Five current and former Deutsche Bank employees told the New York Times that after computer alerts flagged suspicious activity, the specialists would put together recommendations urging bank executives to report the activity to the Treasury Department.

However, executives refused to act on the recommendations and kept the reports from the Department.

Tammy McFadden, an ex-Deutsche Bank employee who reviewed such alerts, said she found that money had been moved from Kushner Companies to Russian individuals.

Amanita Virosa , 1 hour ago link

Was it Trump who joked that Gitmo will renamed Comey Island? Like Coney Island with the fun house replaced with the big house.

John_Coltrane , 3 hours ago link

Breaking: We now know positively that there was Russian collusion. But it was via Obama, the Demonrats and their lapdog propaganda apparatus the MSM, Trump was completely innocent. (Saul Alinsky-Always accuse your opponents of that for which you are guilty. Your students, Obuttboy and Killiary studied you well, sensei)

They used a CIA spy asset, Stephen Halper, to feed Russian disinformation via the commie traitor Brennan head of Obuttboy's CIA into their Demonrat Senate traitors who asked for an FBI investigation and that lying sack-0-**** Comey, head of the FBI, complied using the so-called Steele "dossier" to obtain an illegal FISA warrant(s) to spy on members of the Trump team such as Carter Page. Comey knew the dossier and the parallel constructed Brennan pack of lies were fiction yet put his signature on the FISA application anyway blinded by his hatred of Trump and his girly-man nature. They used parallel construction to give an air of credibility to the fictional script written by Glenn Simpson, head of Fusion GPS, employer of "hit by an ugly" stick Nellie Ohr and paid to Hilliary and the DNC to smear Trump. The script was written in 2007.

Want more details? Please listen to Dan Bongino's Friday show and laugh your ******* head off at these spygate idiots now caught naked as the tide recedes.

As Dan puts it so pithily, it's not James Bond, it's Bond, James. Its Gitmo for you morons and a Pulitzer to Dan Bongino. And yet the MSM seems not to be aware of this? How can that be? Perhaps, as the commies like to say the MSM needs to be deconstructed, literally!

Josef Stalin , 3 hours ago link

never trust ANYTHING amerikans say ... I am the default example after we saved the World from Nazism - something the amerikan rats are now funding and supporting - they betrayed me in 1945 and that traitor Gorby in 1986 with the NATO scam... and these parameters will ALWAYS into the future determine our level of trust with America ..... it will be ZERO

cryptohalo , 3 hours ago link

It's not Barr's FBI that would be slimed...it's Comey's FBI. But nice try, James.

RKae , 3 hours ago link

This is like watching a movie director, producers and actors blame each other for a flop. They all thought it was a great idea during pre-production, but after the critics take it apart and the public ignores it, they all turn on each other and say, "I knew this was a piece of **** from the start!"

oldanalyst , 3 hours ago link

Baker is lying. He should go to Leavenworth with the rest of the seditious conspirators.

AKKadian , 3 hours ago link

What gutless POS in DC! They don't mind leaking BS lies to the MSMutt's and taking bribes. DC is the biggest enemy the U.S. has in the entire world. Scam Lie Cheat Steal and are total nerd pussies.

ZD1 , 3 hours ago link

Arrest Obama, Hillary and all Democrat socialist traitors for their attempted coup.

TheCentralScrutinizer , 3 hours ago link

Yep.. Carter Page was such a "bad guy" that the FBI permitted him (and continues to do so) to walk around American and NEVER be arrested.. Yep.. that was a pretty strong amount of evidence you guys had there for that FISA warrant.. And you never told Trump either about this "Russian Mole" in his campaign as you're required to do (and as you did for the Chinese mole in Feinstein's office)..

Scrutinizer

OCnStiggs , 4 hours ago link

Bongino has the goods on them, in minute detail. https://bongino.com/ep-979-they-cant-keep-track-of-their-own-lies/

Glenn Simpson wrote the dossier with input from a Putin operative. They ran it through Steele simply to give it "credibility." Wheel out the guillotine and get it lubed up. This is gonna be a busy summer. NOTHING can stop what is coming. Nothing.

MrBoompi , 4 hours ago link

Dear Mr. Comey, there are numerous "bad facts" already out in public, many of them involving you, and many seem worthy of prison.

ducksinarow , 4 hours ago link

I have read many articles from many sources including reading the Mueller Report as it was released to the public and tedious it was.

I have come to the conclusions at this point that:

A. Many amateur actors not familiar with how to do counter intelligence were brought in by the Clinton campaign largely because no expert would have touched what she was trying to do.

B: No one can explain from the very beginning what happened, who knew what when, nor how they were going to answer for it when they got caught, if they got caught.

C. The Steele Dossier is the most amateurish piece of garbage they could think of. It was born out of some comments made by Trump during the debates when both he and his opponents started talking about hand size.

D. When and if Barr and Horowitz get the information compiled, this is going to look worse than a school election of a class president for the 9th grade. Mostly testosterone and no where to put it.

Mimir , 4 hours ago link

And yet FBI has said, that they took the Steele Report seriously because it confirmed a series of information, that FBi already had, but check every line of the report. What was the result of that FBI examination we don't know.

Amy G. Dala , 5 hours ago link

Yeah, right. Comey will email SUBORDINATES to go on record that it's not HIS idea . . .but we'll go with the dossier anyway. If you got a problem with Brennan, why not memorialize that in an email to Brennan?

Ultimate CYA swamp creature. What ever happened to the "Comey Memo"? Has anybody actually seen it? Was it written on Windows? Can we see the metadata to prove when it was written? or was it penned on a bar napkin, and can be edited at any time.

In an alternate universe, we would have Comey, Clapper and Brennan in adjacent rooms, two chairs a table and harsh lighting.

Ace006 , 5 hours ago link

Pretty rich for Comey to call for searching for facts professionally, like the clown car investigation under him was professional. Unh huh. Surrrre.

This Baker *** hat and Obongo and crew looovved the "dossier" and thought it was just the ticket to be used against Trump and his people. Just the most natural thing there was and oh so useful for their purposes. So WHAAAAT if the "dossier" stank like dead cow. Surrre. What Democrat DOESN'T want to pursue a decapitation strategy? And surrre the basis for one was right there in that socialist scumbag's "dossier." And, surrre, i believe Steele is no long were MI-6. Fisking Theresa May.

Surrre this *** hat was just brimming with effing skepticism and I'm surrre there are emails and memos expressing just that, his skepticism.

St. TwinkleToes , 5 hours ago link

I see parallels from the twenties with what's happening today. For example, Prohibition was meant to outlaw drinking. Instead, it made drinkers into outlaws. Breaking the law became commonplace. New York closed 15,000 legal saloons when prohibition began. Some 32,000 illegal speakeasy's replaced them. Upstanding citizens and mobsters became partners in crime, allied against federal agents in the battle for booze.

Today, that battle is against feds for truth and justice.

truthalwayswinsout , 5 hours ago link

This guy is a lawyer. He owed a duty to inform the judge that his bosses were lying about the warrant. He owed a duty to counsel his bosses to make them stop what they were doing and consider if it was a violation.

Unless he did those two things, he should go to jail and also be disbarred and also be subject to civil suits for those who had to pay attorney fees during the investigation.

jmNZ , 5 hours ago link

Why are they bending over backwards to protect the British, who were the real interferers in the American election. Clinton mob-CIA-MI6-Steele-Pablo Miller-Skripal-Steele-Clinton mob.

Had to be "buried" when Trump won, so MI6 took out Skripal and CIA took out Seth Rich.

Amy G. Dala , 5 hours ago link

Seth Rich and CIA? Don't think so. DNC has an army of lawyers, the kind that aren't in the phone book. They know lots of people who are willing to do things for a price.

Recall the Podesta email, re: DNC "hack": We're gonna make an example of this guy. So, they seem to know who it is that stole the emails, and they are going to "make an example" of him. And do recall the statement of Donna Brazile, who expressed fear for her own safety in the wake of the Seth Rich murder: "you don't know what these people are capable of".

CIA would involve too many people.

ducksinarow , 4 hours ago link

If this had not been an amateur job, we would still not know anything. There would be no investigation because the players would never have been identified like 95% of all counter intelligence work. Seth Rich was killed in plain sight as a message to some one else. He was probably the only innocent person involved at such a deep level.

When listening to an account of an event on TV or written in a blurb on the internet, always ask, why do they want us to know this stuff? The answer is usually so they can hide what they are really doing.

[May 19, 2019] Why The Takedown Of Heinz-Christian Strache Will Strengthen The Right

Notable quotes:
"... In July 2017 Strache and his right hand man Johann Gudenus, who is also the big number in the FPOe, get invited for dinner to a rented villa on Ibiza, the Spanish tourist island in the Mediterranean. They are told that the daughter of a Russian billionaire plans large investments in Austria. It was said that she would like to help his party. The alleged daughter of the Russian billionaire, who is actually also Austrian, and her "friend" serve an expensive dinner. Alcohol flows freely. The pair offers a large party donation but asks for returns in form of mark ups on public contracts. ..."
"... Unknown to Strache the villa is professionally bugged with many hidden cameras and microphones. ..."
"... The right-wing parties will use the case to boost their legitimacy. ..."
"... Strache was obviously set up by some intelligence services, probably a German one with a British assist. The original aim was likely to blackmail him. But during the meeting on Ibiza Strache promised and did nothing illegal. Looking for potential support for his party is not a sin. Neither is discussing investments in Austria with a "daughter of a Russian oligarch." Some boosting while drunk is hardly a reason to go to jail. When the incident provided too little material to claim that Strache is corrupt, the video was held back until the right moment to politically assassinate him with the largest potential damage to his party. That moment was thought to be now. ..."
"... The massive economic shock following the banking collapse of 2007–8 is the direct cause of the crisis of confidence which is affecting almost all the institutions of western representative democracy. The banking collapse was not a natural event, like a tsunami. It was a direct result of man-made systems and artifices which permitted wealth to be generated and hoarded primarily through multiple financial transactions rather than by the actual production and sale of concrete goods, and which then disproportionately funnelled wealth to those engaged in the mechanics of the transactions. ..."
"... The political assassination of Christian Strache is unjust. What was done during the 2007-8 banking crisis was utterly corrupt and also unjust. Instead of going to jail the bankers were rewarded with extreme amounts of money for their assault on the well being of the people. The public was then told that it must starve through austerity to make up for the loss of money. ..."
May 19, 2019 | www.moonofalabama.org

During the last days a right wing politician in Austria was taken down by using an elaborate sting. Until Friday Heinz-Christian Strache was leader of the far right (but not fascist) Freedom Party of Austria (FPOe) and the Vice Chancellor of the country. On Friday morning two German papers, the Sueddeutsche Zeitung and Der Spiegel published (German) reports (English) about an old video that was made to take Strache down.

The FPOe has good connections with United Russia, the party of the Russian President Putin, and to other right-wing parties in east Europe. It's pro-Russian position has led to verbal attacks on and defamation of the party from NATO supporting and neoliberal circles.

In July 2017 Strache and his right hand man Johann Gudenus, who is also the big number in the FPOe, get invited for dinner to a rented villa on Ibiza, the Spanish tourist island in the Mediterranean. They are told that the daughter of a Russian billionaire plans large investments in Austria. It was said that she would like to help his party. The alleged daughter of the Russian billionaire, who is actually also Austrian, and her "friend" serve an expensive dinner. Alcohol flows freely. The pair offers a large party donation but asks for returns in form of mark ups on public contracts.

Unknown to Strache the villa is professionally bugged with many hidden cameras and microphones.


A scene from the video. Source: Der Falter (vid, German)

During the six hour long party several schemes get proposed by the "Russian" and are discussed. Strache rejects most of them. He insists several times that everything they plan or do must be legal and conform to the law. He says that a large donation could probably be funneled through an endowment that would then support his party. It is a gray area under Austrian party financing laws. They also discuss if the "Russian" could buy the Kronen Zeitung , Austria's powerful tabloid, and use it to prop up his party.

The evening goes on with several bottles of vodka on the table. Starche gets a bit drunk and boosts in front of the "oligarch daughter" about all his connections to rich and powerful people. He does not actually have these.

Strache says that, in exchange for help for his party, the "Russian" could get public contracts for highway building and repair. Currently most of such contracts in Austria go to the large Austrian company, STRABAG, that is owned by a neoliberal billionaire who opposes the FPOe. At that time Strache was not yet in the government and had no way to decide about such contracts.

At one point Strache seems to understand that the whole thing is a setup. But his right hand man calms him down and vouches for the "Russian". The sting ends with Strache and his companion leaving the place. The never again see the "Russian" and her co-plotter. Nothing they talked about will ever come to fruition.

Three month later Strache and his party win more than 20% in the Austrian election and form a coalition government with the conservative party OeVP led by Chancellor Sebastian Kurz. Even while the FPOe controls several ministries, it does not achieve much politically. It lacks a real program and the government's policies are mostly run by the conservatives.

Nearly two years after the evening on Ibiza, ten days before the European parliament election in which Strache's party is predicted to achieve good results, a video of the evening on Ibiza is handed to two German papers which are known to be have strong transatlanticist leanings and have previously been used for other shady 'leaks'. The papers do not hesitate to take part in the plot and publish extensive reports about the video.

After the reports appeared Strache immediately stepped down and the conservatives ended the coalition with his party. Austria will now have new elections.

On Bloomberg Leonid Bershidsky opines on the case:

Strache's discussion with the Russian oligarch's fake niece shows a propensity for dirty dealing that has nothing to do with idealistic nationalism. Nationalist populists often agitate against entrenched, corrupt elites and pledge to drain various swamps. In the videos, however, Strache and Gudenus behave like true swamp creatures, savoring rumors of drug and sex scandals in Austrian politics and discussing how to create an authoritarian media machine like Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban's.

I do not believe that the people who voted for the FPOe (and similar parties in other countries) will subscribe to that view. The politics of the main stream parties in Austria have for decades been notoriously corrupt. Compared to them Strache and his party are astonishingly clean. In the video he insists several times that everything must stay within the legal realm. Whenever the "Russian" puts forward a likely illegal scheme, Starche emphatically rejects it.

Bershidsky continues:

Strache, as one of the few nationalist populists in government in the European Union's wealthier member states, was an important member of the movement Italian Interior Minister Matteo Salvini has been trying to cobble together ahead of the European Parliament election that will take place next week. On Saturday, he was supposed to attend a Salvini-led rally in Milan with other like-minded politicians from across Europe. Instead, he was in Vienna apologizing to his wife and to Kurz and protesting pitifully that he'd been the victim of a "political assassination" -- a poisonous rain on the Italian right-winger's parade.
...
This leaves the European far right in disarray and plays into the hands of centrist and leftist forces ahead of next week's election. Salvini's unifying effort has been thoroughly undermined, ...

This is also a misreading of the case. The right-wing parties will use the case to boost their legitimacy.

Strache was obviously set up by some intelligence services, probably a German one with a British assist. The original aim was likely to blackmail him. But during the meeting on Ibiza Strache promised and did nothing illegal. Looking for potential support for his party is not a sin. Neither is discussing investments in Austria with a "daughter of a Russian oligarch." Some boosting while drunk is hardly a reason to go to jail. When the incident provided too little material to claim that Strache is corrupt, the video was held back until the right moment to politically assassinate him with the largest potential damage to his party. That moment was thought to be now.

But that Strache stepped down after the sudden media assault only makes him more convincing. The right-wing all over Europe will see him as a martyr who was politically assassinated because he worked for their cause. The issue will increase the right-wingers hate against the 'liberal' establishment. It will further motivate them: "They attack us because we are right and winning." The new far-right block Natteo Salvini will setup in the European Parliament will likely receive a record share of votes.

Establishment writers notoriously misinterpret the new right wing parties and their followers. This stand-offish sentence in the Spiegel story about Strache's party demonstrates the problem:

In the last election, the party drew significant support from the working class, in part because of his ability to simplify even the most complicated of issues and play the common man, even in his role as vice chancellor.

The implicit thesis, that the working class is too dumb to understand the "most complicated of issues", is not only incredibly snobbish but utterly false. The working class understands very well what the establishment parties have done to it and continue to do. The increasing vote share of the far-right is a direct consequence of the behavior of the neoliberal center and of the lack of real left alternatives.

Last week, before the Strache video appeared, Craig Murray put his finger on the wound:

The massive economic shock following the banking collapse of 2007–8 is the direct cause of the crisis of confidence which is affecting almost all the institutions of western representative democracy. The banking collapse was not a natural event, like a tsunami. It was a direct result of man-made systems and artifices which permitted wealth to be generated and hoarded primarily through multiple financial transactions rather than by the actual production and sale of concrete goods, and which then disproportionately funnelled wealth to those engaged in the mechanics of the transactions.

...

The rejection of the political class manifests itself in different ways and has been diverted down a number of entirely blind alleys giving unfulfilled promise of a fresh start – Brexit, Trump, Macron. As the vote share of the established political parties – and public engagement with established political institutions – falls everywhere, the chattering classes deride the political symptoms of status quo rejection by the people as "populism". It is not populism to make sophisticated arguments that undermine the received political wisdom and take on the entire weight of established media opinion.

If one wants to take down the far right one has to do so with arguments and good politics for the working class. Most people, especially working class people, have a strong sense for justice. The political assassination of Christian Strache is unjust. What was done during the 2007-8 banking crisis was utterly corrupt and also unjust. Instead of going to jail the bankers were rewarded with extreme amounts of money for their assault on the well being of the people. The public was then told that it must starve through austerity to make up for the loss of money.

While I consider myself to be a strong leftist who opposes the right wherever possible, I believe to understand why people vote for Strache's FBOe and similar parties. When one talks to these people issues of injustice and inequality always come up. The new 'populist' parties at least claim to fight against the injustice done to the common men. Unlike most of the establishment parties they seem to be still mostly clean and not yet corrupted.

In the early 1990s Strache actually flirted with violent fascists but he rejected their way. While he has far-right opinions, he and his like are no danger to our societies. If we can not accept that Strache and his followers have some legitimate causes, we will soon find us confronted with way more extreme people. The neoliberal establishment seems to do its best to achieve that.

Posted by b on May 19, 2019 at 01:10 PM | Permalink

[May 19, 2019] RF has been falsely accused in Salisbury; RF and Syria have been falsely accused in Douma, Khan Seikhoun and over MH17 tragedy. That means that NATO stages the war on RF by other means. RF should eventually respond. Gob bless President Putin, the RF military leaders and brave soldiers!

May 19, 2019 | russia-insider.com

VeeNarian (Yerevan) a year ago ,

Presumably, RF has been falsely accused in Salisbury. Presumably, RF and Syria have been falsely accused in Douma. Presumably, Russia and Syria have been falsely accused over Khan Seikhoun. Presumably, RF has been falsely accused and PUNISHED over the athletes drug doping. Presumably, RF has been falsely accused over MH17 tragedy. Presumably, the US/EU/NATO/GCC know all this, and still they carry on?

There can be only ONE reaction from President Putin.
ENOUGH IS ENOUGH!
NO MORE MR NICE GUY.

How this translates into action is up to him and the Russian people. Godspeed to the mighty Russian Federation, who have become MORE Christian than the US. (I observe this as a British Indian Hindu).

This reminds me of the moment when the Gita is revealed to Arjuna by Lord Krishna, on the verge of a war he had done everything to avoid. Lord Krishna revealed how Arjuna had to do his duty, his dharma, no matter what his attachment. Godspeed President Putin and the RF military leaders and brave soldiers!

[May 19, 2019] How Russiagate replaced Analysis of the 2016 Election by Rick Sterling

Highly recommended!
Notable quotes:
"... What he said is, 'I Donald Trump am going to be a champion of the working class I know you are working longer hours for lower wages, seeing your jobs going to China, can't afford childcare, can't afford to send your kids to college. I Donald Trump alone can solve these problems.' What you have is a guy who utilized the media, manipulated the media very well. He is an entertainer, he is a professional at that. But I will tell you that I think there needs to be a profound change in the way the Democratic Party does business. It is not good enough to have a liberal elite. I come from the white working class and I am deeply humiliated that the Democratic Party cannot talk to the people where I came from." ..."
"... when the Clinton team first learned that Wikileaks was going to release damaging Democratic National Party emails in June 2016, they "brought in outside consultants to plot a PR strategy for handling the news of the hack the story would advance a narrative that benefited the Clinton campaign and the Democrats: The Russians were interfering in the US election, presumably to assist Trump." ..."
"... After losing the election, Team Clinton doubled down on this PR strategy. As described in the book Shattered (p. 395) the day after the election campaign managers assembled the communication team "to engineer the case that the election wasn't entirely on the up and up . they went over the script they would pitch to the press and the public. Already, Russian hacking was the centerpiece of the argument." ..."
"... A progressive team produced a very different analysis titled Autopsy: The Democratic Party in Crisis . They did this because "the (Democratic) party's national leadership has shown scant interest in addressing many of the key factors that led to electoral disaster." The report analyzes why the party turnout was less than expected and why traditional Democratic Party supporters are declining. ..."
"... Since the 2016 election there has been little public discussion of the process whereby Hillary Clinton became the Democratic Party nominee. It's apparent she was pre-ordained by the Democratic Party elite. As exposed in the DNC emails, there was bias and violations of the party obligations at the highest levels. On top of that, it should now be clear that the pundits, pollsters and election experts were out of touch, made poor predictions and decisions. ..."
"... The 2016 election is highly relevant today. Already we see the same pattern of establishment bias and "horse race" journalism which focuses on fund-raising, polls and elite-biased "electability" instead of dealing with real issues, who has solutions, who has appeal to which groups. ..."
"... The establishment bias for Biden is matched by the bias against Democratic Party candidates who directly challenge Wall Street and US foreign policy. On Wall Street, that would be Bernie Sanders. On foreign policy, that is Tulsi Gabbard. With a military background Tulsi Gabbard has broad appeal, an inclusive message and a uniquely sharp critique of US "regime change" foreign policy. ..."
"... Blaming an outside power is a good way to prevent self analysis and positive change. It's gone on far too long. ..."
May 19, 2019 | dissidentvoice.org
An honest and accurate analysis of the 2016 election is not just an academic exercise. It is very relevant to the current election campaign. Yet over the past two years, Russiagate has dominated media and political debate and largely replaced a serious analysis of the factors leading to Trump's victory. The public has been flooded with the various elements of the story that Russia intervened and Trump colluded with them. The latter accusation was negated by the Mueller Report but elements of the Democratic Party and media refuse to move on. Now it's the lofty but vague accusations of "obstruction of justice" along with renewed dirt digging. To some it is a "constitutional crisis", but to many it looks like more partisan fighting.

Russiagate has distracted from pressing issues

Russiagate has distracted attention and energy away from crucial and pressing issues such as income inequality, the housing and homeless crisis, inadequate healthcare, militarized police, over-priced college education, impossible student loans and deteriorating infrastructure. The tax structure was changed to benefit wealthy individuals and corporations with little opposition. The Trump administration has undermined environmental laws, civil rights, national parks and women's equality while directing ever more money to military contractors. Working class Americans are struggling with rising living costs, low wages, student debt, and racism. They constitute the bulk of the military which is spread all over the world, sustaining continuing occupations in war zones including Afghanistan, Iraq, Syria and parts of Africa. While all this has been going on, the Democratic establishment and much of the media have been focused on Russiagate, the Mueller Report, and related issues.

Immediately after the 2016 Election

In the immediate wake of the 2016 election there was some forthright analysis. Bernie Sanders said , "What Trump did very effectively is tap the angst and the anger and the hurt and pain that millions of working class people are feeling. What he said is, 'I Donald Trump am going to be a champion of the working class I know you are working longer hours for lower wages, seeing your jobs going to China, can't afford childcare, can't afford to send your kids to college. I Donald Trump alone can solve these problems.' What you have is a guy who utilized the media, manipulated the media very well. He is an entertainer, he is a professional at that. But I will tell you that I think there needs to be a profound change in the way the Democratic Party does business. It is not good enough to have a liberal elite. I come from the white working class and I am deeply humiliated that the Democratic Party cannot talk to the people where I came from."

Days after the election, the Washington Post published an op-ed titled " Hillary Clinton Lost. Bernie Sanders could have won. We chose the wrong candidate ." The author analyzed the results saying , "Donald Trump's stunning victory is less surprising when we remember a simple fact: Hillary Clinton is a deeply unpopular politician." The writer analyzed why Sanders would have prevailed against Trump and predicted "there will be years of recriminations."

Russiagate replaced Recrimination

But instead of analysis, the media and Democrats have emphasized foreign interference. There is an element of self-interest in this narrative. As reported in "Russian Roulette" (p127), when the Clinton team first learned that Wikileaks was going to release damaging Democratic National Party emails in June 2016, they "brought in outside consultants to plot a PR strategy for handling the news of the hack the story would advance a narrative that benefited the Clinton campaign and the Democrats: The Russians were interfering in the US election, presumably to assist Trump."

After losing the election, Team Clinton doubled down on this PR strategy. As described in the book Shattered (p. 395) the day after the election campaign managers assembled the communication team "to engineer the case that the election wasn't entirely on the up and up . they went over the script they would pitch to the press and the public. Already, Russian hacking was the centerpiece of the argument."

This narrative has been remarkably effective in supplanting critical review of the election.

One Year After the Election

The Center for American Progress (CAP) was founded by John Podesta and is closely aligned with the Democratic Party. In November 2017 they produced an analysis titled " Voter Trends in 2016: A Final Examination ". Interestingly, there is not a single reference to Russia. Key conclusions are that "it is critical for Democrats to attract more support from the white non-college-educated voting bloc" and "Democrats must go beyond the 'identity politics' versus 'economic populism' debate to create a genuine cross-racial, cross-class coalition " It suggests that Wall Street has the same interests as Main Street and the working class.

A progressive team produced a very different analysis titled Autopsy: The Democratic Party in Crisis . They did this because "the (Democratic) party's national leadership has shown scant interest in addressing many of the key factors that led to electoral disaster." The report analyzes why the party turnout was less than expected and why traditional Democratic Party supporters are declining. It includes recommendations to end the party's undemocratic practices, expand voting rights and counter voter suppression. The report contains details and specific recommendations lacking in the CAP report. It includes an overall analysis which says "The Democratic Party should disentangle itself – ideologically and financially – from Wall Street, the military-industrial complex and other corporate interests that put profits ahead of public needs."

Two Years After the Election

In October 2018, the progressive team produced a follow-up report titled " Autopsy: One Year Later ". It says, "The Democratic Party has implemented modest reforms, but corporate power continues to dominate the party."

In a recent phone interview, the editor of that report, Norman Solomon, said it appears some in the Democratic Party establishment would rather lose the next election to Republicans than give up control of the party.

What really happened in 2016?

Beyond the initial critiques and "Autopsy" research, there has been little discussion, debate or lessons learned about the 2016 election. Politics has been dominated by Russiagate.

Why did so many working class voters switch from Obama to Trump? A major reason is because Hillary Clinton is associated with Wall Street and the economic policies of her husband President Bill Clinton. The North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), promoted by Bill Clinton, resulted in huge decline in manufacturing jobs in swing states such as Michigan, Ohio and Pennsylvania. Of course, this would influence their thinking and votes. Hillary Clinton's support for the Trans Pacific Partnership was another indication of her policies.

What about the low turnout from the African American community? Again, the lack of enthusiasm is rooted in objective reality. Hillary Clinton is associated with "welfare reform" promoted by her husband. According to this study from the University of Michigan, "As of the beginning of 2011, about 1.46 million U.S. households with about 2.8 million children were surviving on $2 or less in income per person per day in a given month The prevalence of extreme poverty rose sharply between 1996 and 2011. This growth has been concentrated among those groups that were most affected by the 1996 welfare reform. "

Over the past several decades there has been a huge increase in prison incarceration due to increasingly strict punishments and mandatory prison sentences. Since the poor and working class have been the primary victims of welfare and criminal justice "reforms" initiated or sustained through the Clinton presidency, it's understandable why they were not keen on Hillary Clinton. The notion that low turnout was due to African Americans being unduly influenced by Russian Facebook posts is seen as "bigoted paternalism" by blogger Teodrose Fikremanian who says, "The corporate recorders at the NY Times would have us believe that the reason African-Americans did not uniformly vote for Hillary Clinton and the Democrats is because they were too dimwitted to think for themselves and were subsequently manipulated by foreign agents. This yellow press drivel is nothing more than propaganda that could have been written by George Wallace."

How Clinton became the Nominee

Since the 2016 election there has been little public discussion of the process whereby Hillary Clinton became the Democratic Party nominee. It's apparent she was pre-ordained by the Democratic Party elite. As exposed in the DNC emails, there was bias and violations of the party obligations at the highest levels. On top of that, it should now be clear that the pundits, pollsters and election experts were out of touch, made poor predictions and decisions.

Bernie Sanders would have been a much stronger candidate. He would have won the same party loyalists who voted for Clinton. His message attacking Wall Street would have resonated with significant sections of the working class and poor who were unenthusiastic (to say the least) about Clinton. An indication is that in critical swing states such as Wisconsin and Michigan Bernie Sanders beat Hillary Clinton in the Democratic primary race.

Clinton had no response for Trump's attacks on multinational trade agreements and his false promises of serving the working class. Sanders would have had vastly more appeal to working class and minorities. His primary campaign showed his huge appeal to youth and third party voters. In short, it's likely that Sanders would have trounced Trump. Where is the accountability for how Clinton ended up as the Democratic Party candidate?

The Relevance of 2016 to 2020

The 2016 election is highly relevant today. Already we see the same pattern of establishment bias and "horse race" journalism which focuses on fund-raising, polls and elite-biased "electability" instead of dealing with real issues, who has solutions, who has appeal to which groups.

Mainstream media and pundits are already promoting Joe Biden. Syndicated columnist EJ Dionne, a Democratic establishment favorite, is indicative. In his article " Can Biden be the helmsman who gets us past the storm? " Dionne speaks of the "strength he (Biden) brings" and the "comfort he creates". In the same vein, Andrew Sullivan pushes Biden in his article " Why Joe Biden Might be the Best to Beat Trump ". Sullivan thinks that Biden has appeal in the working class because he joked about claims he is too 'hands on'. But while Biden may be tight with AFL-CIO leadership, he is closely associated with highly unpopular neoliberal trade deals which have resulted in manufacturing decline.

The establishment bias for Biden is matched by the bias against Democratic Party candidates who directly challenge Wall Street and US foreign policy. On Wall Street, that would be Bernie Sanders. On foreign policy, that is Tulsi Gabbard. With a military background Tulsi Gabbard has broad appeal, an inclusive message and a uniquely sharp critique of US "regime change" foreign policy. She calls out media pundits like Fareed Zakaria for goading Trump to invade Venezuela. In contrast with Rachel Maddow taunting John Bolton and Mike Pompeo to be MORE aggressive, Tulsi Gabbard has been denouncing Trump's collusion with Saudi Arabia and Israel's Netanyahu, saying it's not in US interests. Gabbard's anti-interventionist anti-occupation perspective has significant support from US troops. A recent poll indicates that military families want complete withdrawal from Afghanistan and Syria. It seems conservatives have become more anti-war than liberals.

This points to another important yet under-discussed lesson from 2016: a factor in Trump's victory was that he campaigned as an anti-war candidate against the hawkish Hillary Clinton. As pointed out here , "Donald Trump won more votes from communities with high military casualties than from similar communities which suffered fewer casualties."

Instead of pointing out that Trump has betrayed his anti-war campaign promises, corporate media (and some Democratic Party outlets) seem to be undermining the candidate with the strongest anti-war message. An article at Fairness and Accuracy in Reporting (FAIR) says, " Corporate media target Gabbard for her Anti-Interventionism, a word they can barely pronounce ."

Russiagate has distracted most Democrats from analyzing how they lost in 2016. It has given them the dubious belief that it was because of foreign interference. They have failed to analyze or take stock of the consequences of DNC bias, the preference for Wall Street over working class concerns, and the failure to challenge the military industrial complex and foreign policy based on 'regime change' interventions.

There needs to be more analysis and lessons learned from the 2016 election to avoid a repeat of that disaster. As indicated in the Autopsy , there needs to be a transparent and fair campaign for nominee based on more than establishment and Wall Street favoritism. There also needs to be consideration of which candidates reach beyond the partisan divide and can energize and advance the interests of the majority of Americans rather than the elite. The most crucial issues and especially US military and foreign policy need to be seriously debated.

Blaming an outside power is a good way to prevent self analysis and positive change. It's gone on far too long.

Rick Sterling is an investigative journalist who grew up in Canada but currently lives in the San Francisco Bay Area of California. He can be reached at rsterling1@gmail.com . Read other articles by Rick .

[May 19, 2019] Intel agencies of the UK and US are guilty of fabricating evidence, breaking the laws (certainly of the targeted countries, but also of the UK and US), providing fake analysis and operating as evil actors on the dark side of humanity

Highly recommended!
Notable quotes:
"... what is true is that May was judge, jury and executioner in convicting Russia of the poisoning and refused to follow an evidence based discovery process that lies at the heart of the UK justice system - by hiding behind those powers that the UK intelligence community "needs" in order to protect british (not russian, british) citizens from the sinister influences of foreign powers. ..."
"... the criminal activities of howler monkeys, like Strzok, Page, Brennan, McCabe, SUSAN RICE, Comey, Ohr, BIDEN, OBAMA, etc in the USA are bad enough (whilst hardly impacting civilian life in the US - BUT - the tactics used have been deployed to starve, cause disease, "dumb down", reduce life chances all over the middle east and elsewhere for countless millions of people. ..."
May 19, 2019 | www.zerohedge.com

Couple of factors not mentioned. one is Israel and the other is more sinister still and tied to the conclusions to be drawn from the Mueller report.

it may be true that Skripal helped Steele with some elements of the dossier compiled by Steele, via SKripals handler Pablo Miller. It may be true that Skripal went "stir crazy" and an attempt was made to silence him and his daughter - permanently, because they simply cold not be trusted. a similar motivation could be drawn up against Russia - with the two Russians visiting Salisbury used as diversionary "stool pigeons". It may be true that the "poisoning" was self inflicted and was in fact a murder/suicide attempt as a result of depression along the ines "what's the point of it all".

what is true is that May was judge, jury and executioner in convicting Russia of the poisoning and refused to follow an evidence based discovery process that lies at the heart of the UK justice system - by hiding behind those powers that the UK intelligence community "needs" in order to protect british (not russian, british) citizens from the sinister influences of foreign powers.

what ought to be apparent is

- the same tactics used by the special prosecutor to investigate the "Russia collusion" smoke screen erected by the howler monkeys in the US intel agencies (aided and abetter by howler monkeys in UK intel agencies) to stymie the US executive branch (Trump) are likely to be used by the the UK government and some more as well - in true Le Carre fashion, but with much dumber and less principled actors than Smiley's people.

these tactics prevented (and continue to prevent) investigation and prosecution of heinous corruption within the obama administration of the previous 8 years - these howler monkey intelligence agency tactics include(d) entrapment, honeypots, racketeering, blackmail, de facto kidnapping (in the case of Skripals), bribery, wire fraud, unauthorized wire-tapping, breach of authorized intel agency activities (like the FBI operating overseas and the CIA operating domestically in the US, false and unverified claims in FISA warrants, NSA providing unauthorized information to the CIA and FBI etc)

- given the howler monkey activities of the alphabet soup, it is not beyond the imagination to draw parallels with the CIA's reporting and analysis of situations on the ground wherever they operate to provide intel ahead of military activity. the DOD has already proved complicit by hiring Halper (for hundreds of thousands of dollars) to assist with the entrapment of Trump operative Papadopoulos. Mifsud is likely a CIA, not a Russian, asset.

- given that we have ample evidence of the howler monkeys in the alphabet soup seeking to facilitate a coup against a sitting US president, it is certainly plausible that - as with the US goverment sponsoring the mujaheedin, isis and al qaeda in afghanistan to fight the russians in late 80's early 90's, Iraq yellow cake and WMD - that the howler monkeys paid the white helmets to ovethrow assad and foment civil war in Syria - thus causing the migration of some 5 million syrians into europe, iraq, turkey, jordan, turkey and lebanon.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/White_Helmets_(Syrian_Civil_War)

so , the case is that howler monkey activity in intel agencies of the UK and US (add (F)rance to get FUKUS) are guilty of the manufacture of human conflict by fabricating evidence, breaking the laws (certainly of the targeted countries, but also of the UK and US), providing shitty analysis (howler monkeys are only good at swinging in trees and flinging ****) and generally operating as evil actors on the dark side of humanity.

this can only be brought into sharp relief if howler monkey activities were instead shown to be powers for good rather than the geo-political risks that persist in Iran, North Korea, Venezuela, Yemen, Libya and so on and so forth.

Never mind how much past conflicts in Iraq, Syria, Libya, Afghanistan and so on relied on evidence and analysis thrown at us by the howler monkeys in the tree tops, how much of what we we are doing now is a fabrication causing needless suffering by civilian (not politicians or military engaged in conflict) populations?

the criminal activities of howler monkeys, like Strzok, Page, Brennan, McCabe, SUSAN RICE, Comey, Ohr, BIDEN, OBAMA, etc in the USA are bad enough (whilst hardly impacting civilian life in the US - BUT - the tactics used have been deployed to starve, cause disease, "dumb down", reduce life chances all over the middle east and elsewhere for countless millions of people.

there are equivalents of strzok, page, ohr right throughout the US and UK government "machines" operating overseas. think about that. crimes exposed by Barr et al in the US - against a sitting president - are replicated wherever howler monkeys operate overseas as well.

[May 19, 2019] The OPCW, Douma, The Skripals

Notable quotes:
"... The neocon faction in the US is usually (and reasonably) regarded as the motivator behind much of the western aggression in the Middle East. ..."
"... Granted the US has been looking for excuses to intervene ever more overtly in Syria since 2013, and in that sense this Douma "initiative" is a continuation of their longterm policy. It's also true Russia was warning just such a false flag would be attempted in early March. But in the intervening month the situation on the ground has changed so radically that such an attempt no longer made any sense. ..."
"... A false flag in early March, while pockets of the US proxy army were still holding ground in Ghouta would have enabled a possible offensive in their support which would prevent Ghouta falling entirely into government hands and thereby also maintain the pressure on Damascus. A false flag in early April is all but useless because the US proxy army in the region was completely vanquished and nothing would be gained by an offensive in that place at that time. ..."
"... The US media has been similarly, and uncharacteristically divided and apparently unsure. Tucker Carlson railed against the stupidity of attacking Syria. Commentators on MSNBC were also expressing intense scepticism of the US intent and fear about possible escalation. ..."
"... The official story is a hot mess of proven falsehoods, contradictions, implausible conspiracy theories, more falsehoods and inexplicable silences were cricket chirps tell us all we need to know. ..."
"... The UK government has lied and evaded on every key aspect. ..."
"... Indeed if current claims by Russian FM Lavrov turn out to be true, a "novichok" (whatever that precisely means in this case) may not have been the only substance found in those samples, and a compound called "BZ", a non-lethal agent developed in Europe and America, has been discovered and suppressed in the OPCW report (more about that later). ..."
"... The Skripals themselves were announced to be alive and out of danger mere days after claims they were all but certain to die. Yulia, soon thereafter, apparently called her cousin Viktoria only to subsequently announce, indirectly through the helpful agency of the Metropolitan Police, that she didn't want to talk to her cousin – or anyone else – at all. ..."
"... She is now allegedly discharged from hospital and has "specially trained officers helping to take care of" her in an undisclosed location. A form or words so creepily sinister it's hard to imagine how they were ever permitted the light of day. ..."
"... If a false flag chemical attack had taken place in Syria at the time Russia predicted, just a week or two after the Skripal poisoning, a lot of the attention that's been paid to the Skripals over the last month would likely have been diverted. Many of the questions being asked by Russia and in the alt media may never have been asked as the focus of the world turned to a possible superpower stand-off in the Middle East. ..."
"... So, could it be the Skripal event was never intended to last so long in the public eye? Could it be that it was indeed a false flag, or a fake event, as many have alleged, planned as a sketchy prelude to, or warm up act for a bigger chemical attack in Syria, scheduled for a week or so later in mid-March – just around the time Russia was warning of such a possibility? ..."
"... This would explain why the UK may have been pushing for the false flag to happen (as claimed by Russia) even after it could no longer serve much useful purpose on the ground, and why the Douma "attack" seems to have been so sketchily done by a gang on the run. The UK needed the second part to happen in order to distract from the first. ..."
"... If this is true, Theresa May and her cabinet are currently way out on a limb even by cynical UK standards. Not only have they lied about the Skripal event, but in order to cover up that lie they have promoted a false flag in Syria, and "responded" to it by a flagrant breach of international and domestic law. Worst of all, if the Russians aren't bluffing, they have some evidence to prove some of the most egregious parts of this. ..."
"... But even if some or all of our speculation proves false, and even if the Russian claims of UK collusion with terrorists in Syria prove unfounded, May is still guilty of multiple lies and has still waged war without parliamentary approval. ..."
"... The UK were the most vocal about Syria, and desperately tried to drum up support over Skripal, but it all came to nothing much in the end. ..."
"... Theresa May's political career still hangs by a thread, and her "Falklands moment", at best, staved off the inevitable for a few months. A washout in the EU elections, a very real threat from Farage's Brexit party, and rumblings inside her own party, make her position as unstable as ever. ..."
"... In the US, generally speaking, it seems that the Trump admin – or at least whichever interested parties currently have control of the wheels of government – have called time on war in Syria. Instead, they've moved on to projects in Venezuela and North Korea, and even war with Iran. ..."
"... The failure of the Douma false flag to cause the war it was meant to cause, and the vast collection of evidence that suggests it was a false flag, should be spread far and wide. Not just because it's a truth which vindicates the smeared minority in the alternate media. ..."
May 19, 2019 | www.zerohedge.com

Via Off-Guardian.org,

In view of the latest revelations from the leaked report, which seem to prove that at least some elements of the Douma "chemical attack" were entirely staged, we want to take look back at the chaotic events of Spring 2018.

The following is an extract from an article by Catte originally published April 14th last year, which takes on a greater weight in light of certain evidence – not only that the Douma attack was faked, but that the OPCW is compromised.

You can read the whole article here .

* * *

PRIMARILY UK INITIATIVE?

The neocon faction in the US is usually (and reasonably) regarded as the motivator behind much of the western aggression in the Middle East.

Since at least 2001 and the launch of the "War on Terror" the US has led the way in finding or creating facile excuses to fight oil wars and hegemonic wars and proxy wars in the region. But this time the dynamics look a little different.

This time it really looks as if the UK has been setting the pace of the "response".

The fact (as stated above) that Mattis was apparently telegraphing his own private doubts a)about the verifiability of the attacks, and b)about the dangers of a military response suggests he was a far from enthusiastic partaker in this adventure.

Trump's attitude is harder to gauge. His tweets veered wildly between unhinged threats and apparent efforts at conciliation. But he must have known he would lose (and seemingly has lost) a great part of his natural voter base (who elected him on a no-more-war mandate) by an act of open aggression that threatened confrontation with Russia on the flimsiest of pretexts.

Granted the US has been looking for excuses to intervene ever more overtly in Syria since 2013, and in that sense this Douma "initiative" is a continuation of their longterm policy. It's also true Russia was warning just such a false flag would be attempted in early March. But in the intervening month the situation on the ground has changed so radically that such an attempt no longer made any sense.

A false flag in early March, while pockets of the US proxy army were still holding ground in Ghouta would have enabled a possible offensive in their support which would prevent Ghouta falling entirely into government hands and thereby also maintain the pressure on Damascus. A false flag in early April is all but useless because the US proxy army in the region was completely vanquished and nothing would be gained by an offensive in that place at that time.

You can see why Mattis and others in the administration might be reluctant to take part in the false flag/punitive air strike narrative if they saw nothing currently to be gained to repay the risk. They may have preferred to wait for developments and plan for a more productive way of playing the R2P card in the future.

The US media has been similarly, and uncharacteristically divided and apparently unsure. Tucker Carlson railed against the stupidity of attacking Syria. Commentators on MSNBC were also expressing intense scepticism of the US intent and fear about possible escalation.

The UK govt and media on the other hand has been much more homogeneous in advocating for action. No doubts of the type expressed by Mattis have been heard from the lips of an UK government minister. Even May, a cowardly PM, has been (under how much pressure?) voicing sterling certitude in public that action HAD to be taken.

Couple this with the – as yet unverified – claims by Russia of direct UK involvement in arranging the Douma "attack", and the claims by Syria that the perps are in their custody, and a tentative storyline emerges. It's possible this time there were other considerations in the mix beside the usual need to "be seen to do something" and Trump's perpetual requirement to appease the liberal Russiagaters and lunatic warmongers at home. Maybe this time it was also about helping the UK out of a sticky problem.

THE SKRIPAL CONSIDERATION

Probably the only thing we can all broadly agree on about the Skripal narrative is that it manifestly did not go according to plan. However it was intended to play out, it wasn't this way. Since some time in mid to late March it's been clear the entire thing has become little more than an exercise in damage-limitation, leak-plugging and general containment.

The official story is a hot mess of proven falsehoods, contradictions, implausible conspiracy theories, more falsehoods and inexplicable silences were cricket chirps tell us all we need to know.

The UK government has lied and evaded on every key aspect.

  1. It lied again and again about the information Porton Down had given it
  2. Its lawyers all but lied to Mr Justice Robinson about whether or not the Skripals had relatives in Russia in an unscrupulous attempt to maintain total control of them, or at least of the narrative.
  3. It is not publishing the OPCW report on the chemical analyses, and the summary of that report reads like an exercise in allusion and weasel-wording. Even the name of the "toxic substance" found in the Skripals' blood is omitted, and the only thing tying it to the UK government's public claims of "novichok" is association by inference and proximity.

Indeed if current claims by Russian FM Lavrov turn out to be true, a "novichok" (whatever that precisely means in this case) may not have been the only substance found in those samples, and a compound called "BZ", a non-lethal agent developed in Europe and America, has been discovered and suppressed in the OPCW report (more about that later).

None of the alleged victims of this alleged attack has been seen in public even in passing since the event. There is no film or photographs of DS Bailey leaving the hospital, no film or photographs of his wife or family members doing the same. No interviews with Bailey, no interviews with his wife, family, distant relatives, work colleagues.

The Skripals themselves were announced to be alive and out of danger mere days after claims they were all but certain to die. Yulia, soon thereafter, apparently called her cousin Viktoria only to subsequently announce, indirectly through the helpful agency of the Metropolitan Police, that she didn't want to talk to her cousin – or anyone else – at all.

She is now allegedly discharged from hospital and has "specially trained officers helping to take care of" her in an undisclosed location. A form or words so creepily sinister it's hard to imagine how they were ever permitted the light of day.

Very little of this bizarre, self-defeating, embarrassing, hysterical story makes any sense other than as a random narrative, snaking wildly in response to events the narrative-makers can't completely control.

Why? What went wrong? Why has the UK government got itself into this mess? And how much did the Douma "gas attack" and subsequent drive for a concerted western "response" have to do with trying to fix that?

IS THIS WHAT HAPPENED?

If a false flag chemical attack had taken place in Syria at the time Russia predicted, just a week or two after the Skripal poisoning, a lot of the attention that's been paid to the Skripals over the last month would likely have been diverted. Many of the questions being asked by Russia and in the alt media may never have been asked as the focus of the world turned to a possible superpower stand-off in the Middle East.

So, could it be the Skripal event was never intended to last so long in the public eye? Could it be that it was indeed a false flag, or a fake event, as many have alleged, planned as a sketchy prelude to, or warm up act for a bigger chemical attack in Syria, scheduled for a week or so later in mid-March – just around the time Russia was warning of such a possibility?

Could it be this planned event was unexpectedly canceled by the leading players in the drama (the US) when the Russians called them out and the rapid and unexpected fall of Ghouta meant any such intervention became pointless at least for the moment?

Did this cancelation leave the UK swinging in the wind, with a fantastical story that was never intended to withstand close scrutiny, and no second act for distraction?

So, did they push on with the now virtually useless "chemical attack", botch it (again), leaving a clear evidence trail leading back to them? Did they then further insist on an allied "response" to their botched false flag in order to provide yet more distraction and hopefully destroy some of that evidence?

This would explain why the UK may have been pushing for the false flag to happen (as claimed by Russia) even after it could no longer serve much useful purpose on the ground, and why the Douma "attack" seems to have been so sketchily done by a gang on the run. The UK needed the second part to happen in order to distract from the first.

It would explain why the US has been less than enthused by the idea of reprisals. Because while killing Syrians to further geo-strategic interests is not a problem, killing Syrians (and risking escalation with Russia) in order to rescue an embarrassed UK government is less appealing.

And it would explain why the "reprisals" when they came were so half-hearted.

If this is true, Theresa May and her cabinet are currently way out on a limb even by cynical UK standards. Not only have they lied about the Skripal event, but in order to cover up that lie they have promoted a false flag in Syria, and "responded" to it by a flagrant breach of international and domestic law. Worst of all, if the Russians aren't bluffing, they have some evidence to prove some of the most egregious parts of this.

This is very bad.

But even if some or all of our speculation proves false, and even if the Russian claims of UK collusion with terrorists in Syria prove unfounded, May is still guilty of multiple lies and has still waged war without parliamentary approval.

This is a major issue. She and her government should resign. But it's unlikely that will happen.

So what next? There is a sense this is a watershed for many of the parties involved and for the citizens of the countries drawn into this.

Will the usual suspects try to avoid paying for their crimes and misadventures by more rhetoric, more false flags, more "reprisals"? Or will this signal some other change in direction?

We'll all know soon enough.

* * *

Back to today...

...and while things have moved on, we're still puzzling over all the same issues.

All these questions stand, and are important, but more important than all of that is the lesson: They tried it before, and just because it didn't work doesn't mean they won't try it again.

Last spring, the Western powers showed they will deploy a false flag if they need too, for domestic or international motives. And they have the motives right now.

The UK were the most vocal about Syria, and desperately tried to drum up support over Skripal, but it all came to nothing much in the end.

Theresa May's political career still hangs by a thread, and her "Falklands moment", at best, staved off the inevitable for a few months. A washout in the EU elections, a very real threat from Farage's Brexit party, and rumblings inside her own party, make her position as unstable as ever.

Britain had the most to gain, of all NATO countries, and that is still true. We don't know what they might do.

This time they might even receive greater support from France this time around – since Macron is facing a revolution at home and would kill (possibly literally) for a nice international distraction.

In the US, generally speaking, it seems that the Trump admin – or at least whichever interested parties currently have control of the wheels of government – have called time on war in Syria. Instead, they've moved on to projects in Venezuela and North Korea, and even war with Iran.

That's not to say Syria is safe, far from it. They are always just one carefully place false-flag away from all-out war. Last year, Mattis (or whoever) decided war with Syria was not an option – that it was too risky or complicated. That might not happen next time.

Clearly, the US hasn't totally seen sense in terms of stoking conflict with Russia – as seen by the decision to pull out of the INF Treaty late last year. And further demonstrated by their attempts to overthrow Russia's ally Nicolas Maduro. Another ripe candidate for a false flag.

The failure of the Douma false flag to cause the war it was meant to cause, and the vast collection of evidence that suggests it was a false flag, should be spread far and wide. Not just because it's a truth which vindicates the smeared minority in the alternate media.

But because recognising what they were trying to do last time , is the best defense when they try it again next time .

[May 18, 2019] If Washington were able to control everything, including "Big Prize" Iran, it would be able to dominate all Asian economies, especially China. Trump even said were that to happen, "decisions on the GNP of China will be made in Washington."

May 18, 2019 | www.moonofalabama.org

Peter AU 1 , May 18, 2019 2:15:40 AM | link

Without the oil, Trump has lost. Pepe Escobar is starting to get the picture

https://www.strategic-culture.org/news/2019/05/17/the-dead-dont-die-they-march-to-war/

"If President Trump had ever read Mackinder -- and there's no evidence he did -- one might assume that he's aiming at a new anti-Eurasia integration pivot centered on the Persian Gulf. And energy would be at the heart of the pivot.

If Washington were able to control everything, including "Big Prize" Iran, it would be able to dominate all Asian economies, especially China. Trump even said were that to happen, "decisions on the GNP of China will be made in Washington."...

...Arguably the key (invisible) takeaway of the meetings this week between Foreign Ministers Sergey Lavrov and Wang Yi, and then between Lavrov and Pompeo, is that Moscow made it quite clear that Iran will be protected by Russia in the event of an American showdown. Pompeo's body language showed how rattled he was.

What rattled Pomp: "Any use of nuclear weapons against Russia or its allies, be it small-scale, medium-scale or any other scale, will be treated as a nuclear attack on our country. The response will be instant and with all the relevant consequences,"

Trump may not have read Mackinder but Kissinger sure would have.

[May 18, 2019] Is Trump a double dealer. Why Trump Administration Withholds Information That Could Debunk Russian Interference Claims

May 16, 2019 | consortiumnews.com

tom , May 16, 2019 at 15:23

Trump Administration Withholds Information That Could Debunk Russian Interference Claims

Lavrov responded first to the question. He said that there is no evidence that shows any Russian interference in the U.S. elections. He continued:

Speaking about the most recent US presidential campaign in particular, we have had in place an information exchange channel about potential unintended risks arising in cyberspace since 2013. From October 2016 (when the US Democratic Administration first raised this issue) until January 2017 (before Donald Trump's inauguration), this channel was used to handle requests and responses. Not so long ago, when the attacks on Russia in connection with the alleged interference in the elections reached their high point, we proposed publishing this exchange of messages between these two entities, which engage in staving off cyberspace incidents. I reminded Mr Pompeo about this today. The administration, now led by President Trump, refused to do so. I'm not sure who was behind this decision, but the idea to publish this data was blocked by the United States. However, we believe that publishing it would remove many currently circulating fabrications. Of course, we will not unilaterally make these exchanges public, but I would still like to make this fact known.

The communication channel about cyber issues did indeed exist. In June 2013 the Presidents of the United States and Russia issued a Joint Statement about "Information and Communications Technologies (ICTs)". The parties agreed to establishing communication channels between each other computer emergency response teams, to use the direct communication link of the Nuclear Risk Reduction Centers for cyber issue exchanges, and to have direct communication links between high-level officials in the White House and Kremlin for such matter. A Fact Sheet published by the Obama White House detailed the implementation of these three channels.

One inference from Lavrov's statement is that the "fundamental understanding on this matter" between the two presidents that has "not been fully implemented" is the release of the communications about cyberspace incidents. The Russians clearly think that a release of the communications with the Obama administration would exculpate them. That would also exculpate Trump from any further collusion allegations. Why then does the Trump administration reject the release? Who is blocking it?

Cont. reading: Trump Administration Withholds Information That Could Debunk Russian Interference Claims

https://www.moonofalabama.org/

[May 18, 2019] Daniel Lazare's recent work on Assange indicated via chronological sequencing it's much more likely Guccifer 2.0 was the phony he was suspected to be at the time

May 18, 2019 | consortiumnews.com

hetro , May 15, 2019 at 15:08

I found the first of these statements as "chilling" as the second:

"Schumer thus greeted Assange's April 11 arrest by tweeting his "hope [that] he will soon be held to account for his meddling in our elections on behalf of Putin and the Russian government," while, in a truly chilling statement, Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin of West Virginia declared that "[i]t will be really good to get him back on United States soil [so] we can get the facts and the truth from him."

Daniel Lazare's recent work on Assange indicated via chronological sequencing it's much more likely Guccifer 2.0 was the phony he was suspected to be at the time, let alone Assange's denial it was not the Russians, nor any State operation, plus as we have discussed pointing toward Seth Rich (an insider-as-leak interpretation subsequently buttressed by William Binney et al.)

In short, there is and has been ample information to suspend leaping to the hysterical tar and feather him approach mouthed by Schumer, spittle presumably flying out of his mouth at the time.

It is disgusting to see supposed leaders in the government advocating guilty until proved innocent in this lynch-mob manner in a country with supposedly an advanced system of justice. It reminds me of the Rosenberg case and the McCarthy era and the Salem witch trials before that.

"Monstrous offspring" indeed.

[May 18, 2019] What is the representative of Allmighty Nation doing un Russia?

May 18, 2019 | consortiumnews.com

Bianca , May 16, 2019 at 06:46

So, what is the representative of Allmighty Nation doing un Russia? Why bothering to hint on better relations? Noted in the press conference was the absence of Pompeo's moralizing, limiting itself on US position on issues. What is the point in this flying back and forth?

Yes, Iran -- and arms control. Venezuela -- and arms control. North Korea -- and arms control. I think they are paranoid about Russian weapons. And if Iranians by any chance have some of the new weaponry, providing perfect testing ground, would Russia own to that? What was obvious, no concessions on any issue from Moscow. Not even softened language.

This time, it is different. The economic and military power has shifted east, Europeans forever without a spine this time are spineless in all directions, and it will come as a shock to the establishment that the presumed animosity towards Iran in Gulf, will nowhere to be found. Wil Saudis host US troops against Iran, Doubt that deeply.

[May 17, 2019] Bob Goldstone letter

Looks like a clear attempt to entrup Trump Jr
May 17, 2019 | www.zerohedge.com

On Jun 3, 2016, at 10:36 AM, Rob Goldstone wrote:

Good morning

Emin just called and asked me to contact you with something very interesting.

The Crown prosecutor of Russia met with his father Aras this morning and in their meeting offered to provide the Trump campaign with some official documents and information that would incriminate Hillary and her dealings with Russia and would be very useful to your father.

This is obviously very high level and sensitive information but is part of Russia and its government's support for Mr. Trump - helped along by Aras and Emin.

What do you think is the best way to handle this information and would you be able to speak to Emin about it directly?

I can also send this info to your father via Rhona, but it is ultra sensitive so wanted to send to you first.

Best

Rob Goldstone

On Jun 3, 2016, at 10:53, Donald Trump Jr. wrote:

Thanks Rob I appreciate that. I am on the road at the moment but perhaps I just speak to Emin first. Seems we have some time and if it's what you say I love it especially later in the summer. Could we do a call first thing next week when I am back?

Best,

Don

[May 17, 2019] Andrew Weissmann, Top Mueller Prosecutor Who Built Paul Manafort Case, to Step Down

Mar 16, 2019 | www.thedailybeast.com

Andrew Weissmann -- who built the case against Paul Manafort and one of the most prominent members of Robert Mueller's team -- is reportedly stepping down from the special counsel investigation. It's the latest indication that Mueller's work is nearly complete. NPR reports that Weissmann will also leave the Justice Department and now plans to study and teach at New York University while working on preventing wrongful convictions. Manafort was sentenced to about 7 1/2 years in federal prison following two cases that stemmed from Mueller's investigation.

However, neither case involved alleged collusion with Russia.

One source told NPR that Weissmann's departure is a clear sign that Mueller's work is finally winding up -- it follows the departure of the most senior FBI agent working on the Mueller probe, Special Agent in Charge David Archey, who has started a new job as head of the FBI's office in Richmond, Virginia.

[May 17, 2019] What Putin And Pompeo Did Not Talk About

May 17, 2019 | www.zerohedge.com

I Am Jack's Macroaggression , 44 minutes ago link

US foreign policy under President Trump is remarkably similar to what it would have been under Hillary...

except even she wouldnt have put a Chabad Orthodox *** in charge of a mideast 'peace' plan, let alone a 'solution' for the illegal immigration crisis which Trump did nothing about when the GOP controlled both House and Senate

haruspicio , 1 hour ago link

I do not think Putin is an idiot...he has consistently made good decisions and judgements and outsmarted both Obama and Trump on every occasion. For some reason I am worried that he is palling up to the wrong guy. Trump and the US cannot be trusted to observe any agreement or treaty and have displayed this over and over again.

Putin should be aligning with China who can be trusted to honour deals made. A military alliance between Russia and China with mutual aid of attacked by a third party would make the best strategic sense. If Putin doesn't;t do this he will get weakened economically and then when he is weak, the US will invade.

admin user , 1 hour ago link

there have been secret talks among the three pillars of Eurasian integration – Russia, China and Iran – about Chinese and Russian guarantees

" We are at war with Eurasia. We have always been at war with Eurasia ." - Nineteen Eighty-Four

not dead yet , 2 hours ago link

As quoted by the Moon Of Alabama Lavrov claimed there were back channels between the US and Russia from 2013 to Trumps taking office. Lavov claims these communications would shed lots of light on the Russians not interfering in the election and other stuff the Russians have been falsely accused of. Russia wants to release these communications and will only do so if the US agrees which they have not. Pompeo was silent.

chunga , 2 hours ago link

Quite a contrast to what their DC counterparts would do; that's smear it all over fake news in a dishonest, sensational effort to malign.

[May 17, 2019] Judicial Watch Nellie Ohr Deleted Emails Exchanged with DOJ Husband Bruce Ohr - Judicial Watch

May 16, 2019 | www.judicialwatch.org

http://jwatch.us/qqkyvU

'I'm deleting these emails now'

(Washington, DC) – Judicial Watch today released an email revealing that Nellie Ohr, wife of former Associate Deputy Attorney General Bruce Ohr, informed him that she was deleting emails sent from Bruce Ohr's DOJ email account.

From: Nellie Ohr

Sent: Wednesday, April 20, 2016 12:49 PM

To: Ohr, Bruce (ODAG)

Subject: Re: Analyst Russian Organized Crime – April 2016

Thanks! I'm deleting these emails now

The full email exchange is between Bruce Ohr, Lisa Holtyn, Nellie Ohr, and Stefan Bress, a first secretary at the German Embassy, and is part of 339 pages of heavily redacted records from the U.S. Department of Justice.

Judicial Watch obtained the records through a March 2018 Freedom of Information Act lawsuit filed after the Justice Department failed to respond a December 2017 request ( Judicial Watch v. U.S. Department of Justice (No. 1:18-cv-00490)).

Nellie Ohr's email has the same subject line as an email exchange with the subject line "Analyst Russian Organized Crime – April 2016" in which Bress initiates a discussion with Bruce Ohr and his top aide, Lisa Holtyn, proffering some "Russian analysts" to discuss a variety of topics with Ohr, Holtyn, and other DOJ officials. Among those topics to be discussed is "Impact of Russian influence operations in Europe ('PsyOps/InfoWar')."

Holtyn responds with, "I haven't had a chance to confer with Bruce yet, but would certainly love to meet with the 'A Team'!" Bruce Ohr then says, "That time works for me as well." Bress then provides the personal details/passport numbers of the German analysts who will be meeting with Holtyn and Ohr. Holtyn tells Bress that the Ohr's would like to host the German delegation for dinner and notes that Joe Wheatley and Ivana Nizich (a husband/wife team of DOJ Organized Crime prosecutors and friends of the Ohr's) would join them as well.

Until he was demoted for his connection to the anti-Trump dossier, Bruce Ohr was a top official at DOJ. A House Intelligence Committee memo released by Chairman Devin Nunes said that Nellie Ohr was "employed by Fusion GPS to assist in the cultivation of opposition research on Trump" and that Bruce Ohr passed the results of that research, which was paid for by the Democratic National Committee (DNC) and the Hillary Clinton campaign, to the FBI. The " salacious and unverified " Dossier was used to obtain a Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) surveillance warrant to spy on Carter Page.

These documents are part of Nellie Ohr's and the DOJ's communications about Russia. Rep. Mark Meadows (R-NC) recently wrote up a criminal referral concerning her testimony before Congress that she had no knowledge of what was going on during the Russia investigation at DOJ.

"This email is disturbing and suggests documents relevant to the improper targeting of President Trump were destroyed," said Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton.

This production of documents also revealed that Bruce Ohr remained in regular contact with former British spy and Fusion GPS contractor Christopher Steele after Steele was terminated by the FBI in November 2016 for revealing to the media his position as an FBI confidential informant.

[May 17, 2019] Trump Administration Withholds Information That Could Debunk Russian Interference Claims

Notable quotes:
"... That is an interesting transcript to read. Much of what it says dovetails with the conversation Peter AU 1 and Karlof1 were having in the comments forum attached to B's previous post (comments 85 - 87) and my addition @ 96 with regard to psychological projection and the phenomenon of shared psychosis, the latter which is now well known in Australia due to a case involving five members of a family in Victoria in 2016. ..."
"... Maybe there is also a class warfare aspect to Russiagate as well, just as there was to the mass hysteria directed at Communism: both phenomena focus on particular scapegoats made to represent the manifestation of the fears of a ruling class that knows it does not deserve its position in society. ..."
"... Because it would constitute a great moral error for Russia and a blow to its rapidly rising credibility and trustworthiness. Here are several maxims: First and foremost--The Golden Rule; Second--you don't stoop to the level of your opponent; rather, expose the difference as much as possible. Third, and almost as important as #1--Honor & Dignity. ..."
"... the information is simply deemed too damaging to the USA soft power, to the point even Trump doesn't want to release it to the public; and/or the deep state is essentially blocking it from going public for the same reason. ..."
"... this Russophobe situation is not all that bad to the political faction in Russia who wants it to remain sovereign relative to the USA (i.e. the Eurasianists). Trade between the two countries was already almost null before the sanctions (less than 5% of each country's total trade), so they aren't really affecting their economies. Besides, Russia gains the rationale to stifle its neoliberals at home (Yeltsin and the liberals) and maintain United Russia in power. It also gives Putin a legitimate excuse to dump US Treasury bonds, build its own internet servers, increase its relations with China and drive a wedge between Europe and the US. ..."
"... What happened with the "US is rapidly collapsing" , "The breathtaking weakness of the Empire", "No one takes the US seriously" "World to US - you are fired" and so on alt media retardations? ..."
May 17, 2019 | www.moonofalabama.org

Trump Administration Withholds Information That Could Debunk Russian Interference Claims karlof1 , May 16, 2019 3:44:02 PM | link

On Tuesday Russia's President Putin again rejected U.S. claims that his country interfered in the 2016 elections in the United States. Additional statements by Foreign Minister Lavrov provide that there is more information available about alleged Russian cyber issue during the election. He pointed to exchanges between the Russian and U.S. governments that Russia wants published but which the U.S. is withholding.

On Tuesday May 14 Secretary of State Mike Pompeo flew to Sochi to meet with Russia's Foreign Minister Sergej Lavrov and with the President of the Russian Federation Vladimir Putin. It was Pompeo's first official visit to Russia. Pompeo's meeting with Lavrov was followed by a joined news conference . The statements from both sides touched on the election issue.

The State Department published a full transcript and video of the press conference in English language. The Russian Foreign Ministry provided an official English translation of only Lavrov's part. Both translations differ only slightly.

Here are the relevant excerpts from the opening statements with regard to cyber issues.

Lavrov:

We agreed on the importance of restoring communications channels that have been suspended lately, which was due in no small part to the groundless accusations against Russia of trying to meddle in the US election. These allegations went as far as to suggest that we colluded in some way with high-ranking officials from the current US administration. It is clear that allegations of this kind are completely false. [...] I think that there is a fundamental understanding on this matter as discussed by our presidents during their meeting last year in Helsinki, as well as during a number of telephone conversations. So far these understandings have not been fully implemented .

Pompeo:

[W]e spoke, too, about the question of interference in our domestic affairs. I conveyed that there are things that Russia can do to demonstrate that these types of activities are a thing of the past and I hope that Russia will take advantage of those opportunities.

During the Q & A Shaun Tanron of AFP asked Pompeo about the election issue:

[I]f I could follow up on your statement about the election, you said that there are things that Russia could do to show that election interference is a thing of the past. What are those things? What do – what would you like Russia to do? Thank you very much.

Lavrov responded first to the question. He said that there is no evidence that shows any Russian interference in the U.S. elections. He continued:

Speaking about the most recent US presidential campaign in particular, we have had in place an information exchange channel about potential unintended risks arising in cyberspace since 2013. From October 2016 (when the US Democratic Administration first raised this issue) until January 2017 (before Donald Trump's inauguration), this channel was used to handle requests and responses. Not so long ago, when the attacks on Russia in connection with the alleged interference in the elections reached their high point, we proposed publishing this exchange of messages between these two entities, which engage in staving off cyberspace incidents. I reminded Mr Pompeo about this today. The administration, now led by President Trump, refused to do so. I'm not sure who was behind this decision, but the idea to publish this data was blocked by the United States. However, we believe that publishing it would remove many currently circulating fabrications. Of course, we will not unilaterally make these exchanges public, but I would still like to make this fact known.

The communication channel about cyber issues did indeed exist. In June 2013 the Presidents of the United States and Russia issued a Joint Statement about "Information and Communications Technologies (ICTs)". The parties agreed to establishing communication channels between each other computer emergency response teams, to use the direct communication link of the Nuclear Risk Reduction Centers for cyber issue exchanges, and to have direct communication links between high-level officials in the White House and Kremlin for such matter. A Fact Sheet published by the Obama White House detailed the implementation of these three channels.

One inference from Lavrov's statement is that the "fundamental understanding on this matter" between the two presidents that has "not been fully implemented" is the release of the communications about cyberspace incidents. The Russians clearly think that a release of the communications with the Obama administration would exculpate them. That would also exculpate Trump from any further collusion allegations. Why then does the Trump administration reject the release? Who is blocking it?

Pompeo did not respond to Lavrov's points. His next meeting that day was with President Putin.

Putin let him wait for three hours. Both sides issued short opening statements. The English translations of what Putin said differ. In the version provided by Russia Putin explicitely denies the alleged election interference:

For our part, we have said many times that we would also like to restore relations on a full scale. I hope that the necessary conditions for this are being created now since, despite the exotic character of Mr Mueller's work, he should be given credit for conducting what is generally an objective inquiry. He reaffirmed the lack of any trace or collusion between Russia and the current administration , which we described as sheer nonsense from the very start. There was no, nor could there be any interference on our part in the US election at the government level. Nevertheless, regrettably, these allegations have served as a reason for the deterioration of our interstate ties.

The State Department version does not include the Russian denial of election interference but doubles the rejection of the collusion claim:

On our behalf, we have said it multiple times that we also would like to rebuild fully fledged relations, and I hope that right now a conducive environment is being built for that, because, though, however exotic the work of Special Counsel Mueller was, I have to say that on the whole he had a very objective investigation and he confirmed that there are no traces whatsoever of collusion between Russia and the incumbent administration , which we've said was absolutely fake. As we've said before, there was no collusion from our government officials and it could not be there. Still, that was – that was one of the reasons certainly breaking our (inaudible) ties.

An English language live translation of that paragraph (vid) by the Russian sponsored Ruptly does not include the word 'election' in the highlighted sentence, nor does a live translation (vid) by PBS.

It seem that the Kremlin later inserted the explicit denial of election interference into Putin's statement. It is quite possible that Putin, who did not read from a prepared paper, mangled the talking point that Lavrov had already made.

After the meeting Putin, Pompeo held a short press availability with the U.S. journalists accompanying him. There is no mentioning of Lavrov's point.

There were secret communications between the Obama administration and the Russian government about the alleged election interference and 'hacks' of the DNC and of Clinton's campaign manager Podesta. They are not mentioned in the Mueller report nor in any other open source. As Russia wants these communications released it might be possible to file a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request to press for their publication. The Trump administration response to such a FOIA request could at least reveal the reasons why it is withholding them.

The allegations of Russian interference in the 2016 elections are partly based on the fact that a commercial Russian enterprise used fake characters on Facebook to sell advertisement . A review of the themes and ideological positions those fake characters provided demonstrates that they were not designed to influence the U.S. elections.

In contrast to those Russian fakes other fake characters on Facebook, provided by an Israeli company and revealed today, were clearly designed to influence elections :

Facebook said Thursday it banned an Israeli company that ran an influence campaign aimed at disrupting elections in various countries and has canceled dozens of accounts engaged in spreading disinformation.
...
Many were linked to the Archimedes Group, a Tel Aviv-based political consulting and lobbying firm that boasts of its social media skills and ability to "change reality."
...
On its website, Archimedes presents itself as a consulting firm involved in campaigns for presidential elections.

Little information is available beyond its slogan, which is "winning campaigns worldwide," and a vague blurb about the group's "mass social media management" software, which it said enabled the operation of an "unlimited" number of online accounts.

Don't expect any protest from Washington DC about such obvious election interference in other countries.

---
Hat tip to Aaron Maté for pointing out Lavrov's statement

"... a release of the communications with the Obama administration would " be the logical, necessary first step in removing all the anti-Russian sanctions, theft of diplomatic property, and so forth--except--that isn't what the actual policy is toward Russia: Russia's the declared "existential threat" #1 of 2 to Outlaw US Empire National Security; so, any actual accommodation--"normalization of relations/communications--with Russia remains off the table.

Why?

The Controlling Oligarchy still believes it can overcome what's becoming an Eurasian Alliance to its Zero-sum plan for the planet. Such a conclusion clearly isn't determined by facts or logic but by the long entrenched metaphysical dogma in the Controlling Oligarchy's exceptionalism and that its God of Mammon is on its side. Fantastical delusion, certainly, that only operates within the alternative reality the Controlling Oligarchy's constructed for itself and its slaves/disciples. That construct has its roots in the ongoing denial of historical reality over the past 2,000+ years, whose true reality was recovered by Michael Hudson's Peabody Museum Team.


Symen Danziger , May 16, 2019 3:47:51 PM | link

The Trump administration probably wants to stretch this nothingburger well into 2020 to give Democrats a little taste of their own medicine.

The toxic cocktail of Ukrainian oligarchs/operatives and the Obama/Clinton/Kerry/Biden mafia is best served around election time.

Taffyboy , May 16, 2019 4:28:34 PM | link
Again, this is WWE kayfabe by Trump. He is such a bull shitter. If you can stand to watch without upchucking...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jkghtyxZ6rc

... There you have it, one glorious president, same guy different year. But Lavrov, again shows grace under fire. This guy is amazing. He is more than a match for Trump, or any low brow now representing the USA.

Jackrabbit , May 16, 2019 4:45:14 PM | link
Taffyboy @15: kayfabe by Trump

Trump does engage in a lot of kayfabe - like his "fake news" conflict with our controlled press.

But the new McCarthyism is much more. This is a serious Deep State-approved policy to weaken Russia, kettle Europe, and stifle dissent.

lysias , May 16, 2019 4:46:00 PM | link Really? , May 16, 2019 4:46:10 PM | link
"And i know all the points made that Russia could not have hacked them, but all the opposing evidence is much stronger IMHO, "

This statement is quite worrisome.
It is akin to the Mueller investigation itself: evidence-free, or evidence bending and distorting.
IMO any hypothesis/theory of the crime has to account for all available physical evidence and forensics. If it doesn't either there is something wrong with the hypothesis, or with the evidence. Unless you can provide counter-evidence to Binney's assessment and evidence that there was a leak, not a hack, then I don't think your conclusion has much value--becomes a garbage in, garbage out situation.

WJ , May 16, 2019 4:57:38 PM | link
The problem with Jackrabbit's @3 account is that it takes seriously the notion that Trump is a "nationalist," which he's not. His rhetoric is nationalist, as is arguably his "trade war" with China, but every major foreign policy action he's undertaken could have been undertaken by any of the last four Presidents and most would have been undertaken by Clinton. I agree with Jackrabbit that the correct inference to draw from the Trump administration's failure to publish the exonerating correspondence is that the new McCarthyism is policy, on some level. The only difference between Trump and Clinton is that she knew this was the new policy going into the election and even had a hand in creating its pretext, while Trump was informed only later.

Why is this policy? Not because Henry Kissinger says so. It is because the last years of the Obama presidency leading into the 2016 election witnessed a noticeable rise of social and political disaffection among Americans due to rapidly increasing inequality post the 2008-09 bailout and this was perceived as threatening the viability (ie propagandistic utility) of the two major parties and corporate media narratives, these being the two institutions most captured by and useful for the oligarchic elites. The Russia-meddling narrative would have been put forward even if Clinton had won, though probably under a different guise. Its main function was to recapture domestic politics and party stability by creating a foreign enemy that could be presented to the masses as the cause of American social unrest. The masses, being stupid and gullible, would soon fall into line, and yearn for a "return" to the "normalcy"--ie the status quo iniquities--of the political order. This, in fact, is the very premise of Biden's--the favored restorationist's-- presidential campaign.

If there is a "reason" that Trump was allowed to be elected, it is probably that the collapse of the Democratic Party poses a bigger threat to the elite than the collapse of the Republican Party does, because the Democratic Party is meant to absorb and neuter social democratic movements coming from the Left. Hence there needed to be a mechanism whereby Democratic Party allegiance was strengthened. Russia-meddling narrative did exactly this. It successfully present social democratic critiques of Party leadership as suspicious and illegitimate and presented the Party itself as the victim of nefarious influence, thereby reinspiring the allegiance of its
members.

The whole theater surrounding the 2020 election is to prevent the populist upsurge of the 2016 election from taking hold. It is largely working. I suspect Biden will be nominated as Democratic nominee during the second ballot of the election, and he will narrowly beat it narrowly lose to Trump. Of course there are multiple parties that benefit from the Russia-meddling narrative. But I think that reestablishing narrative control over domestic politics was the chief purpose of the narrative, not Kissinger's foreign policy op ed.

I think that events subsequent to 2016 support this narrative.

somebody , May 16, 2019 5:06:44 PM | link
The problem is with the artificial construct of "election interference" which lots of countries do in the US by funding certain politicians. The Clinton Foundation is a big elephant.

Cambridge Analytica which has been closely connected to the British establishment pitched to all countries including Russia . As they deal in psychological warfare everybody must have been asleep - or not.
This is a Scottish take on Cambridge Analytica

Board members include an array of Lords, Tory donors, ex-British army officers and defense contractors. This is scandal that cuts to the heart of the British establishment.' A freedom of information request from August 2016, shows that the MOD has twice bought services from Strategic Communication Laboratories in recent years.

In 2010/11, the MOD paid £40,000 to SCL for the "provision of external training". Meanwhile, in 2014/2015, it paid SCL £150,000 for the "procurement of target audience analysis".

In addition, SCL also carries a secret clearance as a 'list X' contractor for the MOD. A List X site is a commercial site on British soil that is approved to hold UK government information marked as 'confidential' and above. Essentially, SCL got the green light to hold British government secrets on its premises.

Meanwhile, the US State Department has a contract for $500,000 with SLC. According to an official, this was to provide "research and analytical support in connection with our mission to counter terrorist propaganda and disinformation overseas." This was not the only work that SCL has been contracted for with the US government, the source added...

So Britain interfered in the US elections in two ways - as a psychological warfare company laying a trail to Russia and as a "private" secret service company - Orbis - claiming that there was a Russian conspiracy.

wagelaborer , May 16, 2019 5:08:37 PM | link
In order to believe that Russia tried to influence the US election by releasing information to American voters, you would have to believe that
1) Russia preferred one candidate over the others, (although Putin has pointed out that US policy marches on, unencumbered by any particular front man in the White House)
2) That Russia believes that American voters carefully research the candidates and base their votes on facts and reason. Why would Russia believe this? I certainly don't. And the reaction of the Dems to the Mueller Report makes it particularly obvious that facts don't penetrate into the minds of Dems. (It should go without saying that Reps are equally resistant to facts.)
3) That Russia knew that the DNC had emails which showed that the Clinton campaign rigged the primaries against Sanders. Why would Russia know that? And did Russia also shoot down Seth Rich, in order to make it look like Clinton racked up another body? As Jackrabbit points out, above, we are told that Clinton actually got 3 million more votes than Trump, so clearly, the leaks, the information and the dead body meant very little to American voters.

I also agree with Jackrabbit that this hysteria against Russia started before the 2016 election. Does no one remember the coup in Ukraine? The propaganda started then.

And the purposes of this propaganda push are obvious, and are playing out now.

A big part is the attempt of our owners to regain access to the wealth of Russia, as they had under their drunken puppet Yeltsin, in the 90s. The sanctions, the NATO expansion, the military "exercises" on the border...all justified (in their propaganda) by the "Russian threat".

Also to push for censorship and control over social media. Listen to their speeches, watch their actions, and it is very clear that they intend to shut down the horizontal flow of information between humans around the world that social media made possible, for a few, brief years.

And the ramping up of the divisions in the US population, by calling anyone who voted for Trump a "racist", which annoys the hell out of people, leading to anger and increased hostility, which is then blamed on the Russians, in a transparent (to normal people) case of psychological projection. They are pushing for civil war, in order to divide and conquer the people, and they are blaming the obvious increase of tensions on the Russians.

Kevin , May 16, 2019 5:09:57 PM | link
The "Russian interference" theory is useful for diverting attention away from the Israeli interference FACT. Trump is a willing stooge of the Israelis and therefore will do nothing substantial to bury the Russian interference theory.
Peter AU 1 , May 16, 2019 5:17:48 PM | link
@jackrabbit
Do you know of any links to the full Kissinger piece that are not hidden behind the WSJ paywall
Peter AU 1 , May 16, 2019 5:39:18 PM | link
NBTS

Sic Semper Tyrannis
https://turcopolier.typepad.com/

karlof1 , May 16, 2019 5:59:29 PM | link
WJ @21--

You raise some good points. Russiagate is very much about Narrative Control and thus about Masses Control since that's Narrative Control's purpose. However, enough insurgents were elected who are quite savvy and fearless, and who are getting media exposure to advance their issues. Furthermore, reality is crushing Narrative Control, and the insurgents are very good to link real life context to the issues they champion--that FOX in some respects is no longer a member of BigLie Media (Tucker Carlson, Sanders Town Hall, and others) is very important. Toss in the 737-MAX scandal and its immediate connections to 2008, and the Controlling Oligarchy has more than one big problem. As for Biden, IMO his association with Obama and Clinton along with his own gaffs will sink him well before the Convention.

karlof1 , May 16, 2019 6:48:28 PM | link
Peter AU 1, et al--

Like many, I hadn't read Kissinger's "Henry Kissinger on the Assembly of a New World Order" since it resided behind the WSJ's paywall. And it's hidden there for a very good reason--it's premised on a totally false version of the post-WW2 world and the actions of the Outlaw US Empire. Indeed, it's an excellent example of the alternative reality believed by the Controlling Oligarchy, which is the essay's intended audience. Here's a whopper from paragraph 2:

"The prevalent American view considered people inherently reasonable and inclined toward peaceful compromise and common sense; the spread of democracy was therefore the overarching goal for international order. Free markets would uplift individuals, enrich societies and substitute economic interdependence for traditional international rivalries."

Please compare that with the actual events--covert and overt--immediately following WW2 and the implementation of the UN Charter and Organization. The Cold War was already ongoing policy; the fundamental tenets of the UN Charter were already being undermined, and unilateral action was seen as required to control peoples deemed unreasonable--because they didn't want to follow the diktats of their former colonial masters. And that's just the beginning of a complete, utter fabrication of history.

Here's the paragraph that introduces the notion of a Rules-based Order:

"A world order of states affirming individual dignity and participatory governance, and cooperating internationally in accordance with agreed-upon rules, can be our hope and should be our inspiration. But progress toward it will need to be sustained through a series of intermediary stages."

Of course, such an order already exists--the UN and its and additional codices of International Law. Is Kissinger trying to remind his audience of the #1 policy goal of the Outlaw US Empire--Full Spectrum Domination--since enthusiasm for it was waning thanks to the Ukraine Crisis (which was deemed a crisis because Crimea wasn't taken)?

What pathology is Kissinger displaying? He's clearly lying deliberately, but how many in his intended audience know he's lying? Chomsky famously noted that delusional ideas can still be rational. I'm sure others will comment now that Kissinger's essay's no longer hidden.

Jen , May 16, 2019 7:03:55 PM | link
James @ 35:

That is an interesting transcript to read. Much of what it says dovetails with the conversation Peter AU 1 and Karlof1 were having in the comments forum attached to B's previous post (comments 85 - 87) and my addition @ 96 with regard to psychological projection and the phenomenon of shared psychosis, the latter which is now well known in Australia due to a case involving five members of a family in Victoria in 2016.

It's possible that what we have been seeing in Washington DC for decades (and what we are still seeing in one form or another) is a form of shared psychosis or mass hysteria. The hysteria over Communism during the 1950s never really went away; it has transformed into the Russiagate scandal of today with its focus on the Trump government.

Maybe there is also a class warfare aspect to Russiagate as well, just as there was to the mass hysteria directed at Communism: both phenomena focus on particular scapegoats made to represent the manifestation of the fears of a ruling class that knows it does not deserve its position in society.

karlof1 , May 16, 2019 7:16:04 PM | link
DontBelieveEitherPropaganda @34--

"Why would it be so bad if Russia finally did hit back the same way it has been treated?"

Because it would constitute a great moral error for Russia and a blow to its rapidly rising credibility and trustworthiness. Here are several maxims: First and foremost--The Golden Rule; Second--you don't stoop to the level of your opponent; rather, expose the difference as much as possible. Third, and almost as important as #1--Honor & Dignity.

In the eyes of the genuine International Community, Russia and China have striven extremely hard to differentiate themselves and their goals from that of the Outlaw US Empire and can now count @2/3s of the world's nations behind them, and that number grows daily while the reputation of the West sinks. Even stalwarts of the West admit this as Merkel did earlier today, which I linked on the previous thread. Thirty years ago, the USSR was coming apart at its seams because for decades it tried to continue a fantasy, a non-reality. Putin and his cadre demand honesty, reality, and accountability. Today Putin took part in the plenary session of The Truth and Justice Regional and Local Media Forum, which is part of an ongoing series aimed at the uplifting of Russia and Russians, and to try and attain the desired results, Putin must have unimpeachable credibility. And he does.

vk , May 16, 2019 7:40:12 PM | link
Assuming this theory is right (and I doubt it), then there's two main possibilities as to 1) why the USA is witholding it and 2) why Russia is in no hurry to release it. My guess is a combination of:

a) the information is simply deemed too damaging to the USA soft power, to the point even Trump doesn't want to release it to the public; and/or the deep state is essentially blocking it from going public for the same reason.

b) this Russophobe situation is not all that bad to the political faction in Russia who wants it to remain sovereign relative to the USA (i.e. the Eurasianists). Trade between the two countries was already almost null before the sanctions (less than 5% of each country's total trade), so they aren't really affecting their economies. Besides, Russia gains the rationale to stifle its neoliberals at home (Yeltsin and the liberals) and maintain United Russia in power. It also gives Putin a legitimate excuse to dump US Treasury bonds, build its own internet servers, increase its relations with China and drive a wedge between Europe and the US.

c) if Russia released unilaterally, it would be born lifeless, since the Western MSM would accuse this info was fake news fabricated by the "Russian propaganda machine", thus defeating its own purpose.

d) it would hurt Trump's own base, since his doctrine is that of the "Clash of Civilizations", i.e. that the world is defined at a macro level by a cultural war, whose ultimate antagonism lies between the Caucasian "Western Civilization" (Christian and white plus their honorable whites: the Japanese and South Korean) and the "Yellows" (Chinese). If the info released could paint a picture of cooperation between those "LGBT-loving" Democrats and the "Strong, Orthodox" Russians, then this fantasy world would shatter to pieces.

vk , May 16, 2019 7:40:12 PM | link Curtis , May 16, 2019 7:43:27 PM | link
The MSM portrayed this NOT as Russian denial of interference but Russia using US interference as an excuse for their own. It's the usual spin.

Haaretz. Isn't it amazing what they can print but our own media won't touch? That's why the alt-media in the US does so well and why the MSM and tech giants fight it.

ДжММ , May 16, 2019 7:45:21 PM | link
Piotr @7:
The Russian transcript which matches the Russian words Putin is shown speaking on video) does indeed speak specifically of elections [выборы]. That seems an important difference, and it is possible that Putin included that comment off-script. In which case, the english-language media, rather than actually translating what was said, simply transcribed a pre-conference script document prepared for them in advance.
Given the way the English-speaking media behaves, such behavior seems like it would be true-to-form.
Passer by , May 16, 2019 7:53:20 PM | link
OT

India joined the US and betrayed Iran. MK Bhadrakumar (who is not a fan of the US) himself admits it. India's betrayal of Iran is only the beginning - https://indianpunchline.com/indias-betrayal-of-iran-is-only-the-beginning/

What happened with the "US is rapidly collapsing" , "The breathtaking weakness of the Empire", "No one takes the US seriously" "World to US - you are fired" and so on alt media retardations?

You underestimate your opponents. Which makes a lot of your analyses garbage. And i don't like reading garbage. Improve the quality of your analyses, please.

Jackrabbit , May 16, 2019 7:53:50 PM | link
WJ @21

You're right, Trump is not actually a nationalist. I've often written that he's a faux populist . Trump was the only MAGA candidate and the ONLY populist on the right. His hiring of Manafort furthered the 'Russian collusion' narrative as well as his very public requests that Russia deliver Clinton emails and his praise of Putin. Trump said he wouldn't prosecute Hillary within days of winning, saying "they've been through a lot" and has strangely brought friends and has associates of his Deep State enemies into his Administration:

  • VP Pence was close to McCain;
  • CIA Director Gina Haspel is associated with Brennan;
  • AG Wm Barr is a long-time friend of Mueller (and Mueller is Comey's mentor);
  • Bolton is a neocon - neocons were "Never Trump".
Billosky , May 16, 2019 7:56:13 PM | link
"And i know all the points made that Russia could not have hacked them, but all the opposing evidence is much stronger IMHO, including analysis and inside knowlegde from current intelligence personal at SST."

Hmm, you sound just like all of the many clowns who have have been peddling the risible Russiagate hoax for the last 2 & 1/2 years! Always chirping about big fat masses of "evidence" that somehow they just can't reveal to the sorry unwashed masses of us, you know, "for reasons of national security," although they, just like you, evidently, will generously deign to provide us with "analysis and knowlegde [sic] from current intelligence personal [sic] at SST," -- whatever the Hell that silly esoteric acronymn is supposed to denominate, -- who are, of course, to be believed implicitly even though they have a very well-documented, seventy year record of spouting the most egregious lies in their quest to maximize their own increasingly mafia-like power. No thanks, "Don't believe either propaganda" I personally don't find your non-evidentiary propaganda nearly so compelling as the meticulous VIPS' refutation of the whole nonsense about "Russian hacking" of the DNC, a refutation which, by the way, has also been repeatedly corroborated by Julian Assange, whose record of veracity, I dare say, would put to shame any comparable record that could possibly be produced by you, or even any of the other self-appointed "analysts" at your so trusted "SST," -- if indeed that acronym refers to anything at all!!

ДжММ , May 16, 2019 7:59:19 PM | link
... also, per what Putin actually said, "Mueller confirmed the absence of any kind of traces and any kind of arrangements between Russia and the current administration, which [russia] has characterized since the beginning as total nonsense."

I am constantly dissatisfied with the quality of Russian-to-English translation from such official sources. It's no 'overload' button, but still , precision in words and grammar matters....

roza shanina , May 16, 2019 8:18:17 PM | link
Mr. Lavrov said, "we believe that publishing it (emails between the two entities communicating about cyberspace issues) would remove many currently circulating fabrications. Of course, we will not unilaterally make these exchanges public..."
I haven't seen the fabrications to which he is referring. Has anyone seen the fabrications of the messages he is speaking about?
Jackrabbit , May 16, 2019 8:21:35 PM | link
karlof1 @36

This is the part that's relevant to Trump as the MAGA candidate:

Even as the lessons of challenging decades are examined, the affirmation of America's exceptional nature must be sustained. History offers no respite to countries that set aside their sense of identity in favor of a seemingly less arduous course.

This is his prescription given after listing all the problems facing his cherished international order.

<> <> <> <> <> <> <>

This was my reaction when I first read it in 2014 :

I was skeptical of Kissinger's Op-ed of March 5th, saying (on April 28th): "Kissinger penned a "lets be reasonable" Op-ed in an attempt to head off Russian action and maintain the gains made via "facts on the ground".

Kissinger again feels the need to join the public conversation but I see his contribution very differently than Banger. My reading is that Kissinger is asserting that the US can and should do whatever it takes to keep the US preeminent – even if that means ignoring allies and/or the post-war international structure (UN, UNSC). That exceptional! message comes through loud and clear despite his 'triage' formalism. And it is a message that is comforting to the elite who read the WSJ (before a holiday weekend), though it should give Joe Sixpack nightmares if fully understood.

There is a lot more there which would take much longer to unpack. But I'll point to one more thing: Note how he forms an equivalence between all the troubles that the 'West' now face, and ignores US/Western actions that have contributed to these conflicts by conflating them. NC readers understand this via Merschemer's (in today's links) work on Ukraine and many links regarding ISIS (like this one).

This comforting message is needed because the Ukraine gambit has failed miserably – as many independent oberservers [sic] predicted– and a deeper conflict with Russia (possibly extending to others) is now in the cards. Like the true neocon that he is, Kissinger has doubled down on Nuland's obnoxious and misguided "f*ck the EU" with an exceptional! "f*ck the World".

God help us.

Don Bacon , May 16, 2019 8:24:54 PM | link
@ Passer 44
India joined the US and betrayed Iran. MK Bhadrakumar (who is not a fan of the US) himself admits it. . . i don't like reading garbage. Improve the quality of your analyses, please.

MKB didn't "admit it," he rued it. You left that part out.

Delhi falls in line with the US diktat on Iran sanctions, which of course will hit the Indian economy very badly, while the US is also at the same time aggressively demanding that India should open up its market for American exports. Why can't the Modi government prioritise India's economic concerns?. . . here

And MKB chastised India as cowards:
The running theme in all this is that India's strategic ties with Iran, Russia and China are coming under challenge from Washington. But the big question is how come Washington regards the "muscular" Modi government with a 56″ chest to be made of such cowardly stuff? Are the ruling elites so thoroughly compromised with the Americans? There are no easy answers.

I don't like reading garbage. Improve the quality of your analysis, please.
karlof1 , May 16, 2019 8:26:07 PM | link
Passer by @44--

Modi, if he gets reelected and given this decision that's a huge IF, India's economy will crash as Iranian oil was being bought at a discount. Also, this will greatly damage future BRI prospects and a host of other matters. IOW, Modi did NOT act in his or India's fundamental interest. Of course, it's even more likely now that he'll lose and the flow of Iranian oil will resume in order to keep India's economy alive. A more apt title for that item would be Modi's suicide.

Jen , May 16, 2019 8:26:52 PM | link
DBEP @ 8, 34:

Aside from the burden of proof you need to provide to back up your belief that the DNC emails were hacked by Russians - which others here have pointed out is not supported by available evidence - you need to say why you believe the moral and right thing for Russia to do is to get involved in a tit-4-tat cycle of revenge for wrongs both real and perceived.

The other problem with your argument is that it appears to be based on a narrow range of sources, and quite dubious sources at that, which happen to agree with one another. Intel agencies are as likely to rely on rumour, innuendo and fake news, to the extent of shaping reports of real events into something completely different, if they believe that will advance their aims.

This is why the CIA was mightily upset when in 2017 Wikileaks revealed the infamous hacking tools known as Vault 7 that the agency uses to hack information and then attach fake metadata to its hacking efforts to cover them and implicate foreign agencies.

Don Bacon , May 16, 2019 8:31:39 PM | link
I suppose that we can all agree that Kissinger is a terrible person, a demonstrated fact with no further proof required.
ДжММ , May 16, 2019 8:33:36 PM | link
roza @49

A HREF="http://www.mid.ru/ru/foreign_policy/news/-/asset_publisher/cKNonkJE02Bw/content/id/3646994">MFA transcript
The word Lavrov used, "измышления", means more literally, "things that have been made up". You are reading nuances into a word that was poorly-chosen as a translation.

ДжММ , May 16, 2019 8:35:59 PM | link
Dagnabbit. Sorry about the broken tags...
Don Bacon , May 16, 2019 8:39:31 PM | link
@ karlof1 52
As MKB pointed out, it's also in India's fundamental interest to retain its interests in Iran regarding the Chabahar port entrance into central Asia, in competition with China & Pakistan's Gwadar port. Modi is basically an anti-Muslim loser, keeping in mind that India has about as many Muslims as Pakistan has. I suppose he thinks it will help him in the election.
karlof1 , May 16, 2019 8:44:15 PM | link
Jackrabbit @50--

As I wrote, Kissinger was knowingly lying. If he actually believed those myths, he's more delusional than I imagined.

I highly suggest reading the transcript james linked @35. Kissinger can be lumped in with all the other deniers.

As I wrote above, the USSR crashed into an impenetrable wall called Reality. The USA is in the process of doing the same although the results will differ. Trump isn't MAGA; he's MAW--Make America Worse as that's the reality.

karlof1 , May 16, 2019 8:54:29 PM | link
Don Bacon @57--

Thanks for adding that. Our assessments of Modi are quite similar. I hope he's replaced. India has so much potential, but it's rarely had a leader to match.

Don Bacon , May 16, 2019 9:04:27 PM | link
@ karlof1 59
Yes India has potential, but meanwhile is quite backward especially compared to China in terms of transport and infrastructure. It's too bad, the people are wonderful, Hindus, Muslims and Christians getting along with no help from Modi.
Passer by , May 16, 2019 9:05:27 PM | link
Don Bacon | May 16, 2019 8:24:54 PM | 51

Did i say that they are not cowards? Does it matter? Does it matter if MK did not like it?

Are you an idiot? What kind of low quality thinking is that?

The point (at least for me) is not whether MK likes what happened or not. Or whether i like it. Sometimes in life bad things happen, no matter what your side is.

The point is already mentioned in the second part of my first comment.

karlof1 | May 16, 2019 8:26:07 PM | 52

Yes, India already has plenty of issues with BRI, especially CPEC. They refused to participate recently in one of the forums if i remember correctly. Yes, there is no doubt that there is a price to pay for India. Yet you can see what is happening with India and Brazil. The US is working towards the weakening of BRICS and multipolarity in general.

So: how do you explain the US gaining power in India and Brazil if the US is collapsing? Unless they are stronger than some people think.

james , May 16, 2019 9:13:59 PM | link
@37 jen.. yes - a bit like the previous conversation, but of relevance here too... i don't know how much of it is intentional, or a result of all drinking the same kooaid for so long, they become immune to an alternative viewpoint.. lots of room for speculation..
Indrid Cold , May 16, 2019 9:14:03 PM | link
This does not show the strength of the dying US empire, it shows the weakness of India's ruling class.
karlof1 , May 16, 2019 9:17:13 PM | link
Passer by @61--

In a word--Corruption. I'll leave it to you to explain to the hundreds of homeless I just finished walking amongst in Portland, Oregon, and the additional million+ nationwide that the USA isn't "collapsing."

In continuation of our discussion on the psychological issues at play within the Outlaw US Empire, I offer this assessment just published by The Saker which is filled with links to prove his assertions:

"[Sidebar: this issue is crucial to the understanding of the United States. The US is an extremely developed country, but not a civilized one. Oscar Wilde (and George Clemanceau) had it right: "America is the only country that went from barbarism to decadence without civilization in between". There are signs of that everywhere in the USA: from the feudal labor laws, to the lack of universal healthcare, to absolutely ridiculous mandatory criminal sentences (the Soviet Penal Code under Stalin was MUCH more reasonable and civilized than the current US laws!), to the death penalty, to the socially accepted torture in GITMO and elsewhere, to racial tensions, the disgusting "food" constituting the typical "SAD" diet, to the completely barbaric "war on drugs", to the world record of incarcerations, to an immense epidemic of sexual assaults and rapes (1/5 of all women in the USA!), homosexuality accepted as a "normal and positive variation of human sexuality", 98 percent of men reported internet porn use in the last six months, – you can continue that list ad nauseam. Please don't misunderstand me – there are as many kind, intelligent, decent, honorable, educated, compassionate people in the USA as anywhere else. This is not about the people living in the USA: it is about the kind of society these people are living in. In fact, I would argue the truism that US Americans are the first victims of the lack of civilization of their own society! Finally, a lack of civilization is not always a bad thing, and sometimes it can make a society much more dynamic, more flexible, more innovative too. But yeah, mostly it sucks ]"

Passer by , May 16, 2019 9:19:11 PM | link
Indrid Cold | May 16, 2019 9:14:03 PM | 63

Sounds good. So India is retarded, Brazil is retarded, Europe is retarded, etc. You are smarter than them. (It is possible though :).

Well, if there are so many retards around in this world, no wonder the US has been ruling it for some time.

uncle tungsten , May 16, 2019 9:22:19 PM | link

Posted by: Jackrabbit | May 16, 2019 7:55:46 PM | 46

I have a copy but I don't know if it's legal to post it.

Try sending it offshore. You could send it to b with a request. I am mystified at you obedience to law.

Indrid Cold , May 16, 2019 9:24:00 PM | link
Passer by, are you alright? It is just...I don't know...you sound a bit disturbed. Who said retarded other than you? Are you retarded? Hmmmm...

Now if you asked whether there are corrupt and worthless "leaders" in India and other places who are either too frightened or too greedy to stand up to murican demands.... oh wait, never mind....

The short bus is coming for you.....

Don Bacon , May 16, 2019 9:25:45 PM | link
On the other hand, the US has many secular and religious groups doing what they can alleviate the suffering that surely exists, a very civilized behavior. Community groups in action, the kind of society we live in, in areas where the government has failed. . .But I do feel left out, 98 percent of US men reported internet porn use in the last six months and I didn't get any. . . Had to do it myself!
hands gruber , May 16, 2019 9:27:11 PM | link
In his book, The Dönmeh Jews, D. Mustafa Turan writes that Wahhab's grandfather, Tjen Sulayman, was actually Tjen Shulman, a member of the Jewish community of Basra, Iraq. The Iraqi intelligence report also states that in his book, The Dönmeh Jews and the Origin of the Saudi Wahhabis, Rifat Salim Kabar reveals that Shulman eventually settled in the Hejaz, in the village of al-Ayniyah what is now Saudi Arabia, where his grandson founded the Wahhabi sect of Islam. The Iraqi intelligence report states that Shulman had been banished from Damascus, Cairo, and Mecca for his "quackery." In the village, Shulman sired Abdul Wahhab. Abdel Wahhab's son, Muhammad, founded modern Wahhabism.
the house of saud is kosher chabad stamp seal approved
Zachary Smith , May 16, 2019 9:27:45 PM | link
@ Peter AU 1 #25

Try this:

https://archive.org/details/pdfy-prJNYRBDTfomv6BU

Passer by , May 16, 2019 9:30:08 PM | link
karlof1 | May 16, 2019 9:17:13 PM | 64

Thanks for the comment. Tommorrow i may answer something.

Indrid Cold | May 16, 2019 9:24:00 PM | 67

Ok then. You can reread the same comment using your word "worthless" instead of my word "retarded". What i said in it still stands.

james , May 16, 2019 9:34:09 PM | link
@44 passer by.. have you always been such a simpleton? jesus.. i took you seriously in the previous threads, but not anymore!
Indrid Cold , May 16, 2019 9:37:52 PM | link
And it is still meaningless. You deliberately confuse the people of a nation with their leaders. What I said is on firmer ground and you know it's true. There will always be men who favor lining their own pockets in the short run rather than sticking to a course that pays off better in the long.
roza shanina , May 16, 2019 9:47:43 PM | link
@49 ДжММ - Spacibo for the link! Mr. Lavrov is my hero. Andrei Andreyevich Gromyko 2.0 for ColdWar 2.0 ®.
Passer by , May 16, 2019 9:49:26 PM | link
james | May 16, 2019 9:34:09 PM | 72

I see a problem with rose colored articles or over optimistic assessments. That's it.

Indrid Cold | May 16, 2019 9:37:52 PM | 73

I do see leaders as some kind of representation of their people. Did't they say that people get the leaders they deserve? What you said is that their elites are corrupt or worthless.

Well, what i say is that if there are so many worhless elites on this world, in the various parts of it, it is no wonder the US has been ruling it for some time.

james , May 16, 2019 9:49:27 PM | link
karlof1 shared the link peter au was looking for.. i know it is some effort to read others comments, and i am as guilty as the next, but if you want to read the link see @29 karlof1 where he shares what kissinger says in the wsj...
james , May 16, 2019 9:52:23 PM | link
@ 75 passer by...i think most folks here do too!

india is in the middle of an election.. it happens this weekend... politicians at election times have a habit of saying things that they don't necessarily keep... i think you overlook important details like this here... i think it makes your commentary that much weaker.

Passer by , May 16, 2019 10:01:32 PM | link
james | May 16, 2019 9:52:23 PM | 77

It is not me who says this is "only the beginning". But ok, let's wait for the elections.

Indrid Cold , May 16, 2019 10:01:50 PM | link
No, sadly, a people get the leaders they get...that is all. The choices are just not there. I mean, we got a choice between an orange freak of a reality show host and a gangland matriarch. Wonderful times! American leadership is the most corrupt in the world, no wonder their kindred souls in other lands gravitate towards them.
Jackrabbit , May 16, 2019 10:03:15 PM | link
Zachary Smith @70

Yeah, that's it.

The context is important.

Russia was instrumental in causing US to back down from their planned bombing of Syria in September 2013.

In February 2014 forces friendly to the West seized control of Ukraine. Nuland was recorded planning for the new Ukrainian government and saying "fuck the EU!". But Russia acted to support pro-Russian elements in Ukraine. Kissinger attempted to intervene as a 'voice of reason' saying that Russia and US should seek the least worst outcome for the two of them. But Russia didn't back down and accept the "facts on the ground". Crimea voted to be part of Russia in May and the Donbas rebels beat back Ukraine's army for the last time in August.

This was very different behavior that what the West had come to expect from Russia. It became clear that Russia had outsmarted the West (the parts of Ukraine the West got was a basket case) and was willing to act decisively when their interest were threatened. The Russia-China alliance was suddenly realized to be a real threat to Western NWO hegemony.

Jackrabbit , May 16, 2019 10:11:07 PM | link
Passer by

Passer by is right in this regard: the US Deep State are attempting to beat back the challenge from Russia and China.

It's not clear which side will win. Each side has a set of advantages and disadvantages that should not be overlooked or underestimated.

Don Bacon , May 16, 2019 10:21:37 PM | link
American leadership is the most corrupt in the world.

A big part of the "leader" problem is that we really don't need them, especially in a