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Anti-Russian hysteria 

Resurgence of anti-Russia hysteria (Neo-McCarthyism) has broad implications for US foreign policy as well as the health of internal political discourse

  Who are those "experts" who tell us that Russian interfered in 2016 elections? Mostly the same neocons who found weapons of mass destruction in Iraq.  Or fake expects who 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 DNC emails leak -- classic false flag operation to blame Vladimir Putin using Crowdstrike honchos Threat inflation as neocon primary tool Demonization of Putin
Blob attacks Trump: Viper nest of neocons in state department fuels Ukraingate Adam Schiff Witch Hunt Nancy Pelosi impeachment gambit Was Eric Ciaramella a part of Obama/Brennan "Trump Task force" ? Alexander Vindman role in Ukrainegate House Democrats attempt to backstab Barr and derail his investigation into the origin of Russiagate Creepy neocon Joe Biden and fleecing of Ukraine
Sanctions against Russia Putin-did-it fiasco Do the US intelligence agencies attempt to influence the US Presidential elections ? UK Government, MI6 and "Integrity Initiative" Marina Butina case as classic neo-McCarthyism witch hunt Antirussian hysteria as a method of suppressing of dissent against neoliberalism and militarism Pathological Russophobia of the US elite
British attempts to contain Russia Nato expansion Conversion of Democratic Party into War Party and Hillary Clinton policy toward Russia  Deception as an art form US and British media are servants of security apparatus  Hillary Clinton email scandal  Neocon foreign policy is a disaster for the USA
Neoliberalism as a New Form of Corporatism Inside "democracy promotion" hypocrisy fair Female Sociopaths American Exceptionalism Color revolutions Israel lobby Corporatist Corruption: Systemic Fraud under Clinton-Bush-Obama Regime
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 Media-Military-Industrial Complex

Introduction

These people have no shame.

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 political fiasco using old "Russians are coming" trick...   the current wave of Russophobia which is now threatening to overcome the USA reminds the anti-Soviet paranoia that defined the 1950s and early 1960s (in reality the USSR serves as inhibitor of cannibalistic instincts of the US elite and was major contribution to the period of general property from 1945 till 1970th). After the USSR was gone the wealth were very quickly redistributed at the expense of common people and now we have one of the most unequal societies in existence.  Which backfired in 2016 with election of Trump as people rejected the puppet of neoliberal elite --- neoliberal warmonger Hillary Clinton  in favor of "a "dark horse" Trump/ many voted for Trump just to show the middle finger to the neoliberal establishment.

As for fake DNC email leak (which was internal leak and blaming Russian were carefully planned false flag operation using Crowdstrike bottomfeeders as a tool). BTW 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" governments 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  WikiLeaks revelations proved.  The DNC behavior was clearly criminal, yet like in a typical banana republic nobody went to jail.  Wasserman-Shultz was reelected and even manage to survive another huge scan with Awan brothers. Like old aristocracy neoliberal elite is clearly above the law.

In his post Is Russia our enemy?  Colonel W. Patrick Lang -- 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 Russophobia (or more correctly Russophenia ;-)  has become one of the most important themes in Hillary presidential campaign and she unsurprisingly is engaged in full-scale anti-Russian hysteria.  In other words, 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?

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 wing of Democratic Party (neoliberal DemoRats) 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 bulsh*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.

The dirty and effective trick DNC used is called "Catch a chief" -- a deflection of attention from their own criminal behaviour. Initially they were 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 in Clinton family and Clinton foundation, 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??

In any case a major US establishment party explicitly levied it's resources against a candidate platform of whom they did not like for deviation from classic neoliberalism matra. In other words they behaved like a classic Mafioso clan. Changing attention of public from committed  by them crimes to Russia and Putin instead. (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?

So RICO statute is perfectlly applicable for them. but of couse they will never be procecuited.

Not it is clear that accusations of Russia in DNC hack was a classic false flag operation performed by the masters of this craft. But it is too late. The atmospefere is already poisoned.  

 

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.


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[Jan 21, 2020] Svetlana Lokhova Money Trail Of FBI Spy Will Expose Russia Hoax Origins

Jan 21, 2020 | www.zerohedge.com

Via SaraACarter.com,

Svetlana Lokhova is suing numerous media outlets, as well as FBI informant Stefan Halper, for defamation and tells The Sara Carter Show that she was used as a target of opportunity by the FBI in an attempt to discredit former National Security Advisor Michael Flynn and target President Donald Trump.

https://omny.fm/shows/the-sara-carter-show/svetlana-lokhova-money-trail-of-fbi-spy-will-expos/embed

Lokhova, a Russian born British scholar, calls Halper "the dirty trickster."

She says his past connections to these agencies and the FBI is a 'big tell' as to why he was used to used to gather information on the Trump campaign.

"So you have 17 intelligence agencies in the United States with an $80 billion budget you have thousands if not tens of thousands of trained people working for your intelligence services and, yet, they seek out this complete outsider (Halper) right he's not a trained investigator," she says, describing Halper as an overweight 74 year old.

"He's somebody whose known... has a history of being involved in every single scandal for over forty years," said Lokhova. She says Halper's money trail is the answer.

Lokhova isn't the only one.

Finance Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley's sent a letter last year demanding answers on Halper's contracts and the Office of Net Assessment. Grassley sent the request in a letter to Department of Defense Acting Secretary Mark Esper, after a Pentagon Inspector General investigation discovered that the office failed to conduct appropriate oversight of the contracts. Grassley urged Esper for the information.

According to Grassley's office it is currently reviewing information sent from the Pentagon.

"The committee is currently reviewing information received recently from the Pentagon, in response to Grassley's request," Taylor Foy, a spokesman for the committee, said in an earlier interview with this news site. Foy confirmed Grassley is continuing to investigate the matter.

According to the DoD Inspector General's report the Office of Net Assessment (ONA) Contracting Officer's Representatives (CORs) " did not maintain documentation of the work performed by Professor Halper or any communication that ONA personnel had with Professor Halper; therefore, ONA CORs could not provide sufficient documentation that Professor Halper conducted all of his work in accordance with applicable laws and regulations. We determined that while the ONA CORs established a file to maintain documents, they did not maintain sufficient documentation to comply with all the FAR requirements related to having a complete COR."

Lokhova tells me at length about the erroneous and inaccurate articles published about her and Flynn. She says it turned her life upside down. She also discusses the toll the lawsuits are taking on her family financially and why she intends to keep on fighting.

Lokhova goes into lengthy details about the malicious targeting operation against her. She says the DOJ must examine Halper's financial trail that began at the Office of Net Assessment at the Pentagon. This, she says, will expose the Russia Hoax Origins.

Halper was used to spread malicious lies about her in an operation that utilized her brief encounter with Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn at a dinner 2014 at the Cambridge Intelligence Seminar as a way of spreading malicious lies about her, she said.

She has filed numerous lawsuits in the federal court in Alexandria, Virginia, and is seeking more than $25 million in damages from Halper, The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, The Washington Post and MSNBC.

[Jan 21, 2020] BBC faces existential threat. In the 21st century, it has nobody left to lie to -- RT Op-ed

Jan 21, 2020 | www.rt.com

George Galloway was a member of the British Parliament for nearly 30 years. He presents TV and radio shows (including on RT). He is a film-maker, writer and a renowned orator.

Whoever replaces outgoing BBC Director General Tony Hall, be sure that establishment interests will be in safe hands. But multiple scandals the broadcaster has been involved in damaged it quite possibly beyond repair.

... ... ...

Corbyn had to be destroyed at almost ANY cost. Their news and current affairs output (and appointments) over the Corbyn era of 2015-2019 was as crude, and crudely effective, as any screaming, screeching Rupert Murdoch tabloid. Perhaps they were worried the ghost of Sir Alasdair Milne would return to haunt them in the form of his son Seumas Milne, Corbyn's director of communications and strategy and right-hand man. The junior Milne – also Winchester and Oxford – is a considerably harder nut to crack than anyone the BBC had ever had to deal with before

[Jan 21, 2020] HBO hires 'king of fake news' Brian Stelter from CNN to produce documentary on the dangers of fake news

Notable quotes:
"... "disinformation and the cost of fake news." ..."
"... "how post-truth culture has become an increasingly dangerous part of the global information environment," ..."
"... To say Stelter's involvement in the documentary attracted mockery online would be an understatement. "This is like Harvey Weinstein doing a documentary on sexual assault," lawyer and journalist Rogan O'Handley wrote. ..."
"... "HBO has hired Brian Stelter to do a documentary on Fake News. That's like hiring Bernie Madoff to teach accounting. Like hiring Michael Moore to host a fashion show. Not to mention [Stelter] is the dullest human ever on television," ..."
Jan 21, 2020 | www.rt.com

If you were making a documentary on fake news and wanted to get journalists involved behind the scenes, there are a few people you may want to avoid. One of those is CNN host Brian Stelter. The HBO network is rightly being mocked for putting Stelter – the host of a CNN show ironically named 'Reliable Sources' – on the team for an upcoming documentary on fake news.

According to Stelter himself, the documentary will investigate "disinformation and the cost of fake news." The film, for which Stelter was executive producer, will dive into "how post-truth culture has become an increasingly dangerous part of the global information environment," according to WarnerMedia.

HBO just announced something I've been working on for a couple of years: A documentary titled "AFTER TRUTH: DISINFORMATION AND THE COST OF FAKE NEWS." The film will premiere on TV and online this March. Directed by @a_rossi !

-- Brian Stelter (@brianstelter) January 15, 2020

To say Stelter's involvement in the documentary attracted mockery online would be an understatement. "This is like Harvey Weinstein doing a documentary on sexual assault," lawyer and journalist Rogan O'Handley wrote.

"HBO has hired Brian Stelter to do a documentary on Fake News. That's like hiring Bernie Madoff to teach accounting. Like hiring Michael Moore to host a fashion show. Not to mention [Stelter] is the dullest human ever on television," radio host Mark Simone added.

[Jan 21, 2020] Russian Hackers May Have Interfered With Vote on Church Potluck, Local Man Suspects

Dec 23, 2019 | www.anti-empire.com

Putin “needs to keep his commie hands” off of the sovereign Independent Baptist church’s affairs

According to sources, local man Clarence Williams has urged his church’s lead pastor as well as local law enforcement to move forward with an investigation into Russian hacking, claiming that there was ample evidence to support the theory that malicious foreign agents infiltrated and influenced the outcome of a vote on the date for next month’s potluck at Second Baptist Church.

... ... ...

The Babylon Bee 23 Dec 19 Society 625 0

[Jan 21, 2020] The Middle East Strategic "Balance" Shredded -- Strategic Culture

Jan 21, 2020 | www.strategic-culture.org

The U.S. was having some success with turning protest messaging against Iran – until, that is – its killing and wounding of so many Iraqi security force members last week (Ketaib Hizbullah is a part of Iraq's armed forces).

Escalation of maximum-pressure was one thing (Iran was confident of weathering that); but assassinating such a senior official on his state duties, was quite something else. We have not observed a state assassinating a most senior official of another state before.

And the manner of its doing, was unprecedented too. Soleimani was officially visiting Iraq. He arrived openly as a VIP guest from Syria, and was met on the tarmac by an equally senior Iraqi official, Al-Muhandis, who was assassinated also, (together with seven others). It was all open. General Soleimani regularly used his mobile phone as he argued that as a senior state official, if he were to be assassinated by another state, it would only be as an act of war.

This act, performed at the international airport of Baghdad, constitutes not just the sundering of red lines, but a humiliation inflicted on Iraq – its government and people. It will upend Iraq's strategic positioning. The erstwhile Iraqi attempt at balancing between Washington and Iran will be swept away by Trump's hubristic trampling on the country's sovereignty. It may well mark the beginning of the end of the U.S. presence in Iraq (and therefore Syria, too), and ultimately, of America's footprint in the Middle East.

Trump may earn easy plaudits now for his "We're America, Bitch!", as one senior White House official defined the Trump foreign policy doctrine; but the doubts – and unforeseen consequences soon may come home to roost.

Why did he do it? If no one really wanted 'war', why did Trump escalate and smash up all the crockery? He has had an easy run (so far) towards re-election, so why play the always unpredictable 'wild card' of a yet another Mid-East conflict?

Was it that he wanted to show 'no Benghazi'; no U.S. embassy siege 'on my watch' – unlike Obama's handling of that situation? Was he persuaded that these assassinations would play well to his constituency (Israeli and Evangelical)? Or was he offered this option baldly by the Netanyahu faction in Washington? Maybe.

Some in Israel are worried about a three or four front war reaching Israel. Senior Israeli officials recently have been speculating about the likelihood of regional conflict occurring within the coming months. Israel's PM however, is fighting for his political life, and has requested immunity from prosecution on three indictments – pleading that this was his legal right, and that it was needed for him to "continue to lead Israel" for the sake of its future. Effectively, Netanyahu has nothing to lose from escalating tensions with Iran -- but much to gain.

Opposition Israeli political and military leaders have warned that the PM needs 'war' with Iran -- effectively to underscore the country's 'need' for his continued leadership. And for technical reasons in the Israeli parliament, his plea is unlikely to be settled before the March general elections. Netanyahu thus may still have some time to wind up the case for his continued tenure of the premiership.

One prime factor in the Israeli caution towards Iran rests not so much on the waywardness of Netanyahu, but on the inconstancy of President Trump: Can it be guaranteed that the U.S. will back Israel unreservedly -- were it to again to become enmeshed in a Mid-East war? The Israeli and Gulf answer seemingly is 'no'. The import of this assessment is significant. Trump now is seen by some in Israel – and by some insiders in Washington – as a threat to Israel's future security vis à vis Iran. Was Trump aware of this? Was this act a gamble to guarantee no slippage in that vital constituency in the lead up to the U.S. elections? We do not know.

So we arrive at three final questions: How far will Iran absorb this new escalation? Will Iran confine its retaliation to within Iraq? Or will the U.S. cross another 'red line' by striking inside Iran itself, in any subsequent tit for tat?

Is it deliberate (or is it political autism) that makes Secretary Pompeo term all the Iraqi Hash'd a-Sha'abi forces – whether or not part of official Iraqi forces – as "Iran-led"? The term seems to be used as a laissez-passer to attack all the many Hash'd a-Sha'abi units on the grounds that, being "Iran-linked", they therefore count as 'terrorist forces'. This formulation gives rise to the false sequitur that all other Iraqis would somehow approve of the killings. This would be laughable, if it were not so serious. The Hash'd forces led the war against ISIS and are esteemed by the vast majority of Iraqis. And Soleimani was on the ground at the front line, with those Iraqi forces.

These forces are not Iranian 'proxies'. They are Iraqi nationalists who share a common Shi'a identity with their co-religionists in Iran, and across the region. They share a common zeitgeist, they see politics similarly, but they are no puppets (we write from direct experience).

But what this formulation does do is to invite a widening conflict: Many Iraqis will be outraged by the U.S. attacks on fellow Iraqis and will revenge them. Pompeo (falsely) will then blame Iran. Is that Pompeo's purpose: casus belli?

But where is the off-ramp? Iran will respond Is this affair simply set to escalate from limited military exchanges and from thence, to escalate until what? We understand that this was not addressed in Washington before the President's decision was made. There are no real U.S. channels of communication (other than low level) with Iran; nor is there a plan for the next days. Nor an obvious exit. Is Trump relying on gut instinct again?

[Jan 21, 2020] The Many Matryoska Dolls to America's Way of Imagining Iran -- Strategic Culture

Notable quotes:
"... The Open Society and its Enemies ..."
"... "Since President Donald Trump ordered the drone strike that killed [Soleimani – justified in terms of deterrence, and allegedly halting an attack] a handful of Trump's advisers, however, [espied another] strategic benefit to killing Soleimani: Call it regime disruption ..."
"... "The case for disruption is outlined in a series of unclassified memos sent to [John Bolton]in May and June 2019 their author, David Wurmser, is a longtime adviser to Bolton who then served as a consultant to the National Security Council. Wurmser argues that Iran is in the midst of a legitimacy crisis. Its leadership, he writes, is divided between camps that seek an apocalyptic return of the Hidden Imam, and those that favour of the preservation of the Islamic Republic. All the while, many Iranians have grown disgusted with the regime's incompetence and corruption. ..."
"... "Wurmser's crucial insight [is that] – were unexpected, rule-changing actions taken against Iran, it would confuse the regime. It would need to scramble," he writes. Such a U.S. attack would "rattle the delicate internal balance of forces and the control over them upon which the regime depends for stability and survival." Such a moment of confusion, Wurmser writes, will create momentary paralysis -- and the perception among the Iranian public that its leaders are weak. ..."
"... "Wurmser's memos show that the Trump administration has been debating the blow against Soleimani since the current crisis began, some seven months ago After Iran downed a U.S. drone [in June], Wurmser advised Bolton that the U.S. response should be overt and designed to send a message that the U.S. holds the Iranian regime, not the Iranian people, responsible. "This could even involve something as a targeted strike on someone like Soleimani or his top deputies," Wurmser wrote in a June 22 memo. ..."
"... In these memos, Wurmser is careful to counsel against a ground invasion of Iran. He says the U.S. response "does not need to be boots on the ground (in fact, it should not be)." Rather, he stresses that the U.S. response should be calibrated to exacerbate the regime's domestic legitimacy crisis. ..."
"... Coping with Crumbling States ..."
"... Clean Break ..."
Jan 21, 2020 | www.strategic-culture.org

lastair Crooke January 20, 2020 © Photo: Flickr / DonkeyHotey On the 17 September 1656, Oliver Cromwell, a Protestant Puritan, who had won a civil war, and had the English king beheaded in public, railed against England's enemies. There was, he told Parliament that day, an axis of evil abroad in the world. And this axis – led by Catholic Spain – was, at root, the problem of a people that had placed themselves at the service of 'evil'. This 'evil', and the servitude that it beget, was the evil of a religion – Catholicism – that refused the English peoples' desire for simple liberties: " [an evil] that put men under restraint under which there was no freedom and under which, there could be 'no liberty of individual consciousness'".

That was how the English protestant leader saw Catholic Spain in 1656. And it is very close to how key orientations in the U.S. sees Iran today : The evil of religion – of Shi'ism – subjecting (they believe) Iranians to repression, and to serfdom. In Europe, this ideological struggle against the 'evil' of an imposed religious community (the Holy 'Roman' Axis, then) brought Europe to 'near-Armageddon', with the worst affected parts of Europe seeing their population decimated by up to 60% during the conflict.

Is this faction in the U.S. now intent on invoking a new, near-Armageddon – on this occasion, in the Middle East – in order, like Cromwell, to destroy the religious 'community known' as the Shi'a Resistance Axis, seen to stretch across the region, in order to preserve the Jewish "peoples' desire for simple liberties"?

Of course, today's leaders of this ideological faction are no longer Puritan Protestants (though the Christian Evangelicals are at one with Cromwell's 'Old Testament' literalism and prophesy). No, its lead ideologues are the neo-conservatives, who have leveraged Karl Popper's hugely influential The Open Society and its Enemies – a seminal treatise, which to a large extent, has shaped how many Americans imagine their 'world'. Popper's was history understood as a series of attempts, by the forces of reaction, to smother an open society with the weapons of traditional religion and traditional culture:

Marx and Russia were cast as the archetypal reactionary threat to open societies. This construct was taken up by Reagan, and re-connected to the Christian apocalyptic tradition (hence the neo-conservative coalition with Evangelists yearning for Redemption , and with liberal interventionists, yearning for a secular millenarianism). All concur that Iran is reactionary, and furthermore, the posit, poses a grave threat to Israel's self-proclaimed 'open society'.

The point here is that there is little point in arguing with these people that Iran poses no threat to the U.S. (which is obvious) – for the 'project' is ideological through and through. It has to be understood by these lights. Popper's purpose was to propose that only liberal globalism would bring about a "growing measure of humane and enlightened life" and a free and open society – period.

All this is but the outer Matryoshka – a suitable public rhetoric, a painted image – that can be used to encase the secret, inner dolls. Eli Lake, writing in Bloomberg , however, gives away the next doll:

"Since President Donald Trump ordered the drone strike that killed [Soleimani – justified in terms of deterrence, and allegedly halting an attack] a handful of Trump's advisers, however, [espied another] strategic benefit to killing Soleimani: Call it regime disruption

"The case for disruption is outlined in a series of unclassified memos sent to [John Bolton]in May and June 2019 their author, David Wurmser, is a longtime adviser to Bolton who then served as a consultant to the National Security Council. Wurmser argues that Iran is in the midst of a legitimacy crisis. Its leadership, he writes, is divided between camps that seek an apocalyptic return of the Hidden Imam, and those that favour of the preservation of the Islamic Republic. All the while, many Iranians have grown disgusted with the regime's incompetence and corruption.

"Wurmser's crucial insight [is that] – were unexpected, rule-changing actions taken against Iran, it would confuse the regime. It would need to scramble," he writes. Such a U.S. attack would "rattle the delicate internal balance of forces and the control over them upon which the regime depends for stability and survival." Such a moment of confusion, Wurmser writes, will create momentary paralysis -- and the perception among the Iranian public that its leaders are weak.

"Wurmser's memos show that the Trump administration has been debating the blow against Soleimani since the current crisis began, some seven months ago After Iran downed a U.S. drone [in June], Wurmser advised Bolton that the U.S. response should be overt and designed to send a message that the U.S. holds the Iranian regime, not the Iranian people, responsible. "This could even involve something as a targeted strike on someone like Soleimani or his top deputies," Wurmser wrote in a June 22 memo.

In these memos, Wurmser is careful to counsel against a ground invasion of Iran. He says the U.S. response "does not need to be boots on the ground (in fact, it should not be)." Rather, he stresses that the U.S. response should be calibrated to exacerbate the regime's domestic legitimacy crisis.

So there it is – David Wurmser is the 'doll' within: no military invasion, but just a strategy to blow apart the Iranian Republic. Wurmser, Eli Lake reveals, has quietly been advising Bolton and the Trump Administration all along. This was the neo-con, who in 1996, compiled Coping with Crumbling States (which flowed on from the infamous Clean Break policy strategy paper, written for Netanyahu, as a blueprint for destructing Israel's enemies). Both these papers advocated the overthrow of the Secular-Arab nationalist states – excoriated both as "crumbling relics of the 'evil' USSR" (using Popperian language, of course) – and inherently hostile to Israel (the real message).

Well ( big surprise ), Wurmser has now been at work as the author of how to 'implode' and destroy Iran. And his insight? "A targeted strike on someone like Soleimani"; split the Iranian leadership into warring factions; cut an open wound into the flesh of Iran's domestic legitimacy; put a finger into that open wound, and twist it; disrupt – and pretend that the U.S. sides with the Iranian people, against its government.

Eli Lake seems, in his Bloomberg piece, to think that the Wurmser strategy has worked. Really? The problem here is that narratives in Washington are so far apart from the reality that exists on the ground – they simply do not touch at any point. Millions attended Soleimani's cortege. His killing gave a renewed cohesion to Iran. Little more than a dribble have protested.

Now let us unpack the next 'doll': Trump bought into Wurmser's 'play', albeit, with Trump subsequently admitting that he did the assassination under intense pressure from Republican Senators. Maybe he believed the patently absurd narrative that Iranians would 'be dancing in the street' at Soleimani's killing. In any event, Trump is not known, exactly, for admitting his mistakes. Rather, when something is portrayed as his error, the President adopts the full 'salesman' persona: trying to convince his base that the murder was no error, but a great strategic success – "They like us", Trump claimed of protestors in Iran.

Tom Luongo has observed : "Trump's impeachment trial in the Senate begins next week, and it's clear that this will not be a walk in the park for the President. Anyone dismissing this because the Republicans hold the Senate, simply do not understand why this impeachment exists in the first place. It is [occurring because it offers] the ultimate form of leverage over a President whose desire to end the wars in the Middle East is anathema to the entrenched powers in the D.C. Swamp." Ah, so here we arrive at another inner Matryoshka.

This is Luongo's point: Impeachment was the leverage to drive open a wedge between Republican neo-conservatives in the Senate – and Trump. And now the Pelosi pressure on Republican Senators is escalating . The Establishment threw cold water over Trump's assertion of imminent attack, as justification for murdering Soleimani, and Trump responds by painting himself further into a corner on Iran – by going the full salesman 'monte'.

On the campaign trail, the President goes way over-the-top, calling Soleimani a "son of a b -- -", who killed 'thousands' and furthermore was responsible for every U.S. veteran who lost a limb in Iraq. And he then conjures up a fantasy picture of protesters pouring onto the streets of Tehran, tearing down images of Soleimani, and screaming abuse at the Iranian leadership.

It is nonsense. There are no mass protests (there have been a few hundred students protesting at one main Tehran University). But Trump has dived in pretty deep, now threatening the Euro-Three signatories to the JCPOA, that unless they brand Iran as having defaulted on JCPOA at the UNSC disputes mechanism, he will slap an eye-watering 25% tariff on their automobiles.

So, how will Trump avoid plunging in even deeper to conflict if – and when – Americans die in Iraq or Syria at the hands of militia – and when Pompeo or Lindsay Graham will claim, baldly, 'Iran's proxies did it'? Sending emollient faxes to the Swiss to pass to Tehran will not do. Tehran will not read them, or believe them, even if they did.

It all reeks of stage-management; a set up: a very clever stage-management, designed to end with the U.S. crossing Iran's 'red line', by striking at a target within Iranian territory. Here, finally, we arrive at the innermost doll.

Cui bono ? Some Senators who never liked Trump, and would prefer Pence as President; the Democrats, who would prefer to run their candidate against Pence in November, rather than Trump. But also, as someone who once worked with Wurmser observed tartly: when you hear that name (Wurmser), immediately you think Netanyahu, his intimate associate.

Matryoshka herself?

[Jan 21, 2020] WaPo columnist endorses all twelve candidates

Highly recommended!
Are WaPo and NYT both encouraging their readerships to split the 'Anybody But Bernie' vote six ways from Super Tuesday? Fantastic!
Jan 21, 2020 | caucus99percent.com

Cassiodorus on Mon, 01/20/2020 - 11:44am Alexandra Petri tells us:

In a break from tradition, I am endorsing all 12 Democratic candidates.

Of course, this is a parody of the NYT's endorsement of Amy Klobuchar and Elizabeth Warren , trying to encourage the "who cares about policy we want an identity-politics win" vote. Petri's funniest moment is:

One of two things is wrong with America: Either the entire system is broken or is on the verge of breaking, and we need someone to bring about radical, structural change, or -- we don't need that at all! Which is it? Who can say? Certainly not me, and that is why I am telling you now which candidate to vote for.

[Jan 21, 2020] Bernie Sanders Walks Straight Into the Russiagate Trap

Jan 21, 2020 | www.strategic-culture.org

Daniel Lazare January 20, 2020 © Photo: Wikimedia The New York Times caused a mini-commotion last week with a front-page story suggesting that Russian intelligence had hacked a Ukrainian energy firm known as Burisma Holdings in order to get dirt on Joe Biden and help Donald Trump win re-election.

But the article was flimsy even by Russiagate standards, and so certain questions inevitably arise. What was it really about? Who's behind it? Who's the real target?

Here's a quick answer. It was about boosting Joe Biden, and its real target was his chief rival, Bernie Sanders. And poor, inept Bernie walked straight into the trap.

The article was flimsy because rather than saying straight out that Russian intelligence hacked Burisma, the company notorious for hiring Biden's son, Hunter, for $50,000 a month job, reporters Nicole Perlroth and Matthew Rosenberg had to rely on unnamed "security experts" to say it for them. While suggesting that the hackers were looking for dirt, they didn't quite say that as well. Instead, they admitted that "it is not yet clear what the hackers found, or precisely what they were searching for."

So we have no idea what they were up to, if anything at all. But the Times then quoted "experts" to the effect that "the timing and scale of the attacks suggest that the Russians could be searching for potentially embarrassing material on the Bidens – the same kind of information that Mr. Trump wanted from Ukraine when he pressed for an investigation of the Bidens and Burisma, setting off a chain of events that led to his impeachment." Since Trump and the Russians are seeking the same information, they must be in cahoots, which is what Democrats have been saying from the moment Trump took office. Given the lack of evidence, this was meaningless as well.

But then came the kicker: two full paragraphs in which a Biden campaign spokesman was permitted to expound on the notion that the Russians hacked Burisma because Biden is the candidate that they and Trump fear the most.

"Donald Trump tried to coerce Ukraine into lying about Joe Biden and a major bipartisan, international anti-corruption victory because he recognized that he can't beat the vice president," the spokesman, Andrew Bates, said. "Now we know that Vladimir Putin also sees Joe Biden as a threat. Any American president who had not repeatedly encouraged foreign interventions of this kind would immediately condemn this attack on the sovereignty of our elections."

If Biden is the number-one threat, then Sanders is not, presumably because the Times sees him as soft on Moscow. If so, it means that he could be in for the same neo-McCarthyism that antiwar candidate Tulsi Gabbard encountered last October when Hillary Clinton blasted her as "the favorite of the Russians." Gabbard had the good sense to blast her right back.

"Thank you @Hillary Clinton. You, the queen of warmongers, embodiment of corruption, and personification of the rot that has sickened the Democratic Party for so long, have finally come out from behind the curtain. From the day I announced my candidacy, there has been a concerted campaign to destroy my reputation. We wondered who was behind it and why. Now we know – it was always you, through your proxies and powerful allies in the corporate media and war machine ."

If only Sanders did the same. But instead he put out a statement filled with the usual anti-Russian clichés:

"The 2020 election is likely to be the most consequential election in modern American history, and I am alarmed by new reports that Russia recently hacked into the Ukrainian gas company at the center of the impeachment trial, as well as Russia's plans to once again meddle in our elections and in our democracy. After our intelligence agencies unanimously agreed that Russia interfered in the 2016 election, including with thousands of paid ads on Facebook, the New York Times now reports that Russia likely represents the biggest threat of election meddle in 2020, including through disinformation campaigns, promoting hatred, hacking into voting systems, and by exploiting the political divisions sewn [sic] by Donald Trump ."

And so on for another 250 words. Not only did the statement put him in bed with the intelligence agencies, but it makes him party to the big lie that the Kremlin was responsible for putting Trump over the top in 2016.

Let's get one thing straight. Yes, Russian intelligence may have hacked the Democratic National Committee. But cybersecurity was so lax that others may have been rummaging about as well. (CrowdStrike, the company called in to investigate the hack, says it found not one but two cyber-intruders.) Notwithstanding the Mueller report, all the available evidence indicates that Russia did not then pass along thousands of DNC emails that Wikileaks published in July 2016. (Julian Assange's statement six months later that "our source is not the Russian government and it is not a state party" remains uncontroverted.) Similarly, there's no evidence that the Kremlin had anything to do with the $45,000 worth of Facebook ads purchased by a St. Petersburg company known as the Internet Research Agency – Robert Mueller's 2018 indictment of the IRA was completely silent on the subject of a Kremlin connection – and no evidence that the ads, which were politically all over the map, had a remotely significant impact on the 2016 election.

All the rest is a classic CIA disinformation campaign aimed at drumming up anti-Russian hysteria and delegitimizing anyone who fails to go along. And now Bernie Sanders is trying to cover his derrière by hopping on board.

It won't work. Sanders will find himself having to take one loyalty oath after another as the anti-Russia campaign flares anew. But it will never be enough, and he'll only wind up looking tired and weak. Voters will opt for the supposedly more formidable Biden, who will end up as a bug splat on the windshield of Donald Trump's speeding election campaign. With impeachment no longer an issue, he'll be free to behave as dictatorially as he wishes as he settles into his second term.

After inveighing against billionaire's wars, he'll find himself ensnared by the same billionaire war machine. The trouble with Sanders is that he thinks he can win by playing by the rules. But he can't because the rules are stacked against him. He'd know that if his outlook was more radical. His problem is not that he's too much of a socialist. Rather, it's that he's not enough.

[Jan 20, 2020] NYT Editors Hedge Their Bets, Endorse Warren Klobuchar

Fake news are consistent: Klobuchar and not Tulsi ?
Jan 20, 2020 | www.zerohedge.com

...

in what the paper described as a "significant break with convention", the members of its editorial board have selected not one, but two candidates - both of them women.

Its chosen candidates are: Elizabeth Warren, the Republican-turned-progressive who for years posed as a Native American to game America's system of affirmative action - and Amy Klobuchar, the midwestern senator from the great state of Minneapolis with a reputation for being an unhinged dragon-lady boss.

That the NYT selected the two remaining women among the top tier of contenders is hardly a surprise: This is, after all, the same newspaper that kicked off #MeToo by dropping the first expose about Harvey Weinstein's history of abusing, harassing and assaulting women just days before the New Yorker followed up with the first piece from Ronan Farrow.

...After all, if the editors went ahead with their true No. 1 choice, Klobuchar, a candidate who has very little chance of actually capturing the nomination, they would look foolish.


DeePeePDX , 2 hours ago link

NYT is like that ex you dumped that won't stop trying to get your attention with increasingly desperate and pathetic acts.

Griffin , 2 hours ago link

Warren is a much better candidate than Biden is in my view.

Warren seems to get into trouble sometimes for all kinds of reasons like most people do, but the problems are usually trivial, more silly than dangerous. There is tendency in her to stick to her guns even when she does not know what she is doing.

When i run into something unexpected or something that seems to be something i don't understand, i usually backtrack and look at the problem from some distance to see what happened and why before trying to correct or fix the problem, rather than just doing something.

Its not a perfect plan, but it seems to work most of the time.

https://9gag.com/gag/ap5AO19

Someone Else , 2 hours ago link

The tennis shoe I threw away last week is a better candidate than Biden. So that's not saying much.

TheManj , 3 hours ago link

NYT remains a joke. Their endorsement is straight up virtue-signalling.

Here's some reality: Warren's latest antics have cemented her image as dishonest and high-strung. Knoblocker has no charisma and remains practically unknown.

John Hansen , 3 hours ago link

Why are foreign ownedNew York Times allowed to meddle in the election?

Where is the investigation?

pitz , 4 hours ago link

I've personally sat down and talked with Klobuchar. Not a lot of depth of intelligence in her, that's for sure, easily manipulated by lobbyists. Warren, at least, knows what the problem is, although she might have swallowed the proverbial Democratic party "kool aid".

spam filter , 4 hours ago link

Warren is the deep state establishment pick. If you must vote Dem, pick someone that isn't, or one the establishment seems to work against. Better yet, vote Trump, safe bet on gun rights, freedoms.

SheHunter , 5 hours ago link

Here's the link. It is a gd editorial.

https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2020/01/19/opinion/amy-klobuchar-elizabeth-warren-nytimes-endorsement.html

[Jan 20, 2020] Fake Investigations... Designed To Fool by Bryce Buchanan

Highly recommended!
Money quote: "The Deep State and the media appear to believe that we are fooled by these fraudulent investigations. We are not fooled. We are tired of the lies and the arrogance."
Notable quotes:
"... For the Deep State, hiding and destroying evidence of guilt is standard operating procedure. They simply report a "glitch" that destroyed the key evidence and that's the end of it. Or, they simply redact the portions of the record that would expose the truth. To my memory, no one ever suffers any consequences for this. Even now, Director Wray and others are tenaciously withholding evidence. ..."
"... When Anthony Weiner's laptop was found to contain over 340,000 Hillary emails in a file named "insurance", the FBI did not rejoice about finally getting the 'lost' email. No, they hid the discovery for weeks until a New York agent threatened to go public. Then, quite miraculously, Peter Strzok found a way to very quickly examine 340,000 messages and found that there was nothing at all that was incriminating. No rational person would believe that. ..."
"... The dirty cops are so confident in their ability to deceive the public that they just announced that the FISA court reforms will be managed by David Kris. Kris has been a defender of FBI misconduct and he attacked Devin Nunes for telling the truth about the FISA court. They don't even care about the appearance of fairness. They do what they want. ..."
"... Because there was nothing, and because it was known from the start that, " there is no big there, there ", the Mueller Team used several irrelevant legal actions to prolong the belief that they were closing in on Trump. Mueller arranged for their media partner, CNN, to film the early morning swat team raid on 67 year old Roger Stone's home. It was very dramatic and very un-necessary. Also, some small-time Russian troll farms were indicted so that the word "Russia" could fill the news, prolonging the desired myth. One of the indicted firms did not even exist. The others did not appear to favor any one candidate and much of their activity was after the election ..."
"... Mueller led a 40 million dollar investigation looking for a crime. That effort failed at finding any collusion, but it did play a role in the Democrats winning a majority in the House of Representatives. That then enabled another investigation of an imaginary crime for political purposes. A scripted hearsay 'whistleblower' submitted lies that allowed Adam Schiff to continue his own campaign of lies. You know the rest of the story. Trump is being falsely charged for doing what Biden bragged about doing. ..."
Jan 20, 2020 | www.zerohedge.com

Authored by Bryce Buchanan via The Burning Platform blog,

Many government officials with long entrenched power are unwilling to give up any of that power. In their minds, they have a right to control our lives as they see fit, with complete indifference to our wishes. To avoid rebellion, they need to hide this fact as much as possible. They want the citizens to believe the lie that we are a nation of laws with equal justice under the law. To advance this lie, they have staged many theatrical productions that they call "investigations". They try to give us the impression that they want to expose the facts and punish wrongdoing.

Most of the big 'investigations' in the news in recent years have not been at all what they pretended to be. The sham investigations of Hillary's email, or the Clinton Foundation, or Weiner's laptop, or Uranium One, or Mueller's witch hunt, or Huber's big nothing, or the IG's whitewash, or the Schiff-Pelosi charades, have all been premeditated deceptions.

There are three types of investigations that call for different deceptions by the Deep State.
  1. The first type is the rare honest investigation . Examples would be the attempt to find the truth about Fast and Furious (Obama's gunrunning operation), or the IRS scandal (Obama's weaponizing of government). In response to real investigations, the criminals do two things lie and hide evidence. Key evidence, even if it is under subpoena, just disappears. In the IRS case, Lois Lerner's relevant email and the email of 6 others involved in the scheme was just "lost". The IRS "worked tirelessly" to find the email, but hard drives had been destroyed and back-up drives were missing, so the subpoenaed evidence could not be provided.

    For the Deep State, hiding and destroying evidence of guilt is standard operating procedure. They simply report a "glitch" that destroyed the key evidence and that's the end of it. Or, they simply redact the portions of the record that would expose the truth. To my memory, no one ever suffers any consequences for this. Even now, Director Wray and others are tenaciously withholding evidence.

  2. The second type of 'investigation' is when the Deep State pretends to investigate the Deep State . In these 'investigations' the outcome is known in advance, but the script calls for pretending, sometimes for years, that it an honest investigation is underway.

    There was nothing about the Hillary investigations that had anything to do with finding facts. The purpose from the beginning was exoneration. Key witnesses were given immunity and many were allowed to attend each other's interviews. There were no early morning swat team raids to gather evidence. Evidence was destroyed with no consequences.

    When Anthony Weiner's laptop was found to contain over 340,000 Hillary emails in a file named "insurance", the FBI did not rejoice about finally getting the 'lost' email. No, they hid the discovery for weeks until a New York agent threatened to go public. Then, quite miraculously, Peter Strzok found a way to very quickly examine 340,000 messages and found that there was nothing at all that was incriminating. No rational person would believe that.

    The dirty cops are so comfortable about getting away with lies like this that Huber can announce that he found no corruption, when it is readily apparent that he did not interview key witnesses . He even turned away whistleblowers who wanted to submit evidence. A real investigator, Charles Ortel, could have given Huber a long list of Clinton Foundation crimes . Like the Weiner laptop fake investigation, you don't find crimes if you don't really look for them.

    The dirty cops are so confident in their ability to deceive the public that they just announced that the FISA court reforms will be managed by David Kris. Kris has been a defender of FBI misconduct and he attacked Devin Nunes for telling the truth about the FISA court. They don't even care about the appearance of fairness. They do what they want.

    IG investigations have proven to be flimsy exonerations of Deep State criminality. Any honest observer can see that there was a carefully organized plan by top officials to control the outcome of the Presidential election. This corrupt plan involved lying to the FISA court, illegal surveillance and unmasking of citizens and conspiring with media partners to make sure lies were widely circulated to voters. The government conspirators and the majority of the media were functioning as nothing more than a branch of Hillary's campaign. That's a lot of power aimed at destroying Trump.

    To an IG investigator, this monumental scandal was presented to us as nothing to be very concerned about. Yes, a few minor rules were inadvertently broken and there did appear to be some bias, but there was no reason at all to think that bias effected any actions. If the agencies involved make a training video and set aside a day for a training meeting, then that should satisfy us completely.

  3. The third type of investigation involves investigating an imaginary crime for political reasons . The Mueller investigation and the impeachment investigation are two examples of this. Probably as a justification for illegal surveillance they were already doing, the conspirators pretended that there was powerful evidence that Trump was colluding with Putin to win the election. Lies about this issue propelled the country into 3 years of stories about nothing stories and investigations about something that never happened. Never in the history of nothing has nothing been so thoroughly covered.

    Because there was nothing, and because it was known from the start that, " there is no big there, there ", the Mueller Team used several irrelevant legal actions to prolong the belief that they were closing in on Trump. Mueller arranged for their media partner, CNN, to film the early morning swat team raid on 67 year old Roger Stone's home. It was very dramatic and very un-necessary. Also, some small-time Russian troll farms were indicted so that the word "Russia" could fill the news, prolonging the desired myth. One of the indicted firms did not even exist. The others did not appear to favor any one candidate and much of their activity was after the election .

    Mueller led a 40 million dollar investigation looking for a crime. That effort failed at finding any collusion, but it did play a role in the Democrats winning a majority in the House of Representatives. That then enabled another investigation of an imaginary crime for political purposes. A scripted hearsay 'whistleblower' submitted lies that allowed Adam Schiff to continue his own campaign of lies. You know the rest of the story. Trump is being falsely charged for doing what Biden bragged about doing.

The Deep State and the media appear to believe that we are fooled by these fraudulent investigations. We are not fooled. We are tired of the lies and the arrogance.

We are increasingly angry that there is a double standard of justice in this country. There is a protected class of people who are not prosecuted for their crimes. This needs to end.


insanelysane , 9 minutes ago link

The sheeple are easily led including the opposition sheeple. Two quick examples:

1. In the email scandal, Hillary was guilty, beyond a shadow of a doubt, of violating the FOIA by conducting all State Department business via a personal email She was guilty. Yet her team, listen up sheeple, her team made it about whether or not classified information was transmitted. This is a gray area which could be defended. She knew she was guilty of the FOIA violation because it was the whole reason the server was set up in the first place. Yet she got away with it because everyone focused on the classifications of emails which was a gray area.

2. In the Weiner / Abedin laptop matter, it is and was illegal for any of these emails to be on a personal computer. Again, guilty beyond a shadow of a doubt. Yet again everyone focused on what was in the emails and not the fact that just possessing the emails was illegal. So the FBI was able to say nothing new here and let it drop. If another group such as the US Marshals was in charge of this investigation, Weiner / Abedin would have been fully charged with possessing these emails. They would have been pressured to reveal why it was named Insurance and have been asked to cut a deal.

DonGenaro , 10 minutes ago link

Assange rots in jail, and Maxwell walks free, while Trump is busy pleasuring every Zionist in sight

East Indian , 23 minutes ago link

A comment in 'The Gateway Pundit':

"Andy McCabe admits lying to the FBI and nothing happens. The FBI lies to Gen. Flynn and he faces jail time. Justice in Deep State America."

- reader ricocat1

hardmedicine , 38 minutes ago link

his name was Seth Rich!

hoffstetter , 40 minutes ago link

The purpose of show trials is to fool those that don't pay attention. There are millions of US citizens that get their news from their neighbor or a narrow set of information that is disseminated by media that parrot their providers verbatim without challenge. Such people are quite regularly fooled and some vote.

buckboy , 57 minutes ago link

We, the People are free to bitch and moan.

marlin2009 , 1 hour ago link

The double standard justice system in America is appalling and even worse than communists. Americans really don’t have any credit to criticize communist countries. The ruling class is no better than them.

The media and ruling classes have tried decades to brainwashed the mass to believe that the less or even not corrupted.

Deep Snorkeler , 1 hour ago link

Trump's Non-Crimes

Trump University Fraud: Trump paid fine

Trump Taj Mahal Casino Money Laundering: Trump paid fine

Trump Foundation Fraud: Trump paid fine

Trump Campaign Law Violations: pending

Trump Obstruction:

Trump Abuse of Power:

Trump...

Old Hippie Patriot , 1 hour ago link

They could have never pulled off the JFK assassination had the internet existed back in 1963. Time for the Epstein *********** to be posted on the internet. Even the asleep would realize the unimaginable evil that has been controlling this world for millenia.

HANGTHEOWL , 1 hour ago link

I am not sure about that,,we have the net now,,and although there are many of us that pay attention and figure out their crimes and hoax's,,,,they still get away with them,,,,,,NASA still gets 59 million a day to fake the space program,,,

monty42 , 1 hour ago link

Why not? They pulled off 9/11. And what do we have? The same as with the JFK murder. People still arguing over how it was done, and ignoring the obvious, historically established now, of who benefited and why. Grassy knoll, 2nd shooter, or directed energy weapons or explosives, internet or not, still chasing the tail.

HANGTHEOWL , 57 minutes ago link

True, they murdered 3,000 of us on 9-11,,right on TV, using plainly obvious controlled demolitions, and to date they have still gotten away with it...

[Jan 20, 2020] Important clarification about MadCow disease

Jan 15, 2020 | consortiumnews.com

DC_rez , January 16, 2020 at 16:08

Are you insinuating Rachel Maddow is a journalist?

[Jan 19, 2020] Why Neocons Hate Russia Even More Than They Hate Any Other Nation

Jan 19, 2020 | www.strategic-culture.org

Eric Zuesse July 27, 2018 © Photo: Public domain

Neoconservatism started in 1953 with Henry "Scoop" Jackson, the Democratic Party US Senator from the state of Washington (1953-1983), who became known as a 'defense' hawk, and as "the Senator from Boeing," because Boeing practically owned him. The UK's Henry Jackson Society was founded in 2005 in order to carry forward Senator Jackson's unwavering and passionate endorsement of growing the American empire so that the US-UK alliance will control the entire world (and US weapons-makers will dominate in every market).

Later, during the 1990s, neoconservatism became taken over by the Mossad and the lobbyists for Israel and came to be publicly identified as a 'Jewish' ideology, despite its having -- and having long had -- many champions who were 'anti-communist' or 'pro-democracy' or simply even anti-Russian, but who were neither Jewish nor even focused at all on the Middle East. Republicans Donald Rumsfeld, Dick Cheney, and John McCain; and the Democrat, CIA Director James Woolsey -- the latter of whom was one of the patrons of Britain's Henry Jackson Society -- were especially prominent neoconservatives, who came to prominence even before neocons became called "neoconservatives." What all neocons have always shared in common has been a visceral hatred of Russians. That comes above anything else -- and even above NATO (the main neocon organization).

During recent decades, neocons have been hating Iranians and more generally Shiites -- such as in Syria and in Lebanon, and now also in Yemen -- and not only hating Russians.

When the Israel lobby during the 1990s and after, pumped massive resources into getting the US Government to invade first Iraq and then Iran, neoconservatism got its name, but the ideology itself did not change. However, there are a few neoconservatives today who are too ignorant to know, in any coherent way, what their own underlying beliefs are, or why, and so who are anti-Russians (that's basic for any neocon) who either don't know or else don't particularly care that Iran and Shia Muslims generally, are allied with Russia. Neoconservatives such as this, are simply confused neocons, people whose underlying ideology is self-contradictory, because they've not carefully thought things through.

An example is Vox's Alex Ward, who built his career as an anti-Russia propagandist , and whose recent ten-point tirade against Russia I then exposed as being false on each one of its ten points , each of those points having been based upon mere allegations by US neocons against Russia without any solid evidence whatsoever. Indictments, and other forms of accusations, are not evidence for anything. But a stupid 'journalist' accepts them as if they were evidence, if those accusations come from 'the right side' -- but not if they come from 'the wrong side'. They don't understand even such a simple distinction as that between an indictment, and a conviction. A conviction is at least a verdict (though maybe based on false 'evidence' and thus false itself), but all that an accusation is an accusation -- and all accusations (in the American legal system) are supposed to be disbelieved, unless and until there is at least a verdict that gives the accusation legal force. (This is called "innocent unless proven guilty.")

Earlier, Mr. Ward had headlined as if he were an anti -neocon, when he posted his "America is fueling the war in Yemen. Congress is finally pushing back." What can account for that seemingly incongruous article?

Mr. Ward is a Democrat -- an heir to Senator Jackson's allegedly anti-communist though actually anti-Russian ideology -- but, since Ward isn't as intelligent as the ideology's founder was, Ward becomes anti -neocon when a Republican-led Administration is doing things (such as Ward there criticizes) that are even more-neocon than today's Democratic Party itself is. In other words: 'journalists' (actually, propagandists) such as he, are more partisan in favor of support of Democratic Party billionaires against Republican Party billionaires, than in support of conquering Russia as opposed to cooperating with Russia (and with all other countries). They're unaware that all American billionaires support expansion of the US empire -- including over Yemen (to bring Yemen in, too -- which invasion Ward incongruously opposes). But politicians (unlike their financial backers) need to pretend not to be so bloodthirsty or so beholden to the military-industrial complex. Thus, an American doesn't need to be intelligent in order to build his or her career in 'journalism', on the basis of having previously served as a propagandist writing for non-profits that are mere fronts for NATO and for Israel, and which are fronts actually for America's weapons-manufacturing firms, who need those wars in order to grow their profits. Such PR for front-organizations for US firms such as Lockheed Martin, is excellent preparation for a successful career in American 'journalism'. If a person is stupid, then it's still necessary to be stupid in the right way, in order to succeed; and Ward is, and does.

This, for example, is how it makes sense that Ward had previously been employed at the War on the Rocks website that organized the Republican neoconservative campaign against Donald Trump during the 2016 Republican primaries : the mega-donors to both US Parties are united in favor of America conquering Russia. And that's why War on the Rocks had organized Republican neocons to oppose Trump: it was done in order to increase the chances for Trump's rabidly anti-Russia and pro-Israel competitors such as Ted Cruz or Marco Rubio to win that nomination instead, which would then have produced the billionaires' dream contest, between Hillary Clinton versus an equally neoconservative Republican nominee. A bipartisan neoconservatism controls both of the American political Parties. A 'journalist' who displays that sort of bipartisanship can't fail in America, no matter how incompetent at real journalism he or she might be. (However, they do have to be literate . Stupid, maybe; but literate, definitely.)

The core of America's form of capitalism has come to be the US aristocracy's bipartisan, liberal and conservative, Democratic and Republican, form of capitalism, which isn't merely fascist (which includes privatizing everything that can be privatized) but which is also imperialist (which means favoring the country's perpetration of invasions and coups in order to expand that nation's empire). The United States is now a globe-spanning empire, controlling not merely the aristocracies in a few banana republics such as Guatemala and Honduras, but also the aristocracies in richer countries such as France, Germany and UK, so as to extract from virtually the entire world -- by means mainly of deception but also sometimes public threats and clearly coercive -- unfair advantages for corporations that are within its borders, and against corporations that are headquartered in foreign countries. America's billionaires -- both the Democratic ones and the Republican ones -- are 100% in favor of America's conquering the world: this ideology is entirely bipartisan, in the United States. Though the billionaires succeeded, during the first Cold War -- the one that was nominally against communism -- at fooling the public to think they were aiming ultimately to conquer communism, George Herbert Walker Bush made clear, on the night of 24 February 1990, privately to the leaders of the US aristocracy's foreign allies, that the actual goal was world-conquest, and so the Cold War would now secretly continue on the US side , even after ending on the USS.R. side. When GHW Bush did that, the heritage of US Senator Jackson became no longer the formerly claimed one, of 'anti-communism', but was, clearly now and henceforth, anti-Russian. And that's what it is today -- not only in the Democratic Party, and not only in the Republican Party, and not only in the United States, but throughout the entire US alliance .

And this is what we are seeing today, in all of the US-and-allied propaganda-media. America is always 'the injured party' against 'the aggressors'; and, so, one after another, such as in Iraq, and in Libya, and in Syria, and in Iran, and in Yemen, and in China, all allies (or even merely friends) of Russia are 'the aggressors' and are 'dictatorships' and are 'threats to America', and only the US side represents 'democracy' . It's actually an aristocracy , which has deeply deceived its public, to think it's a democracy. Just as every aristocracy is based on lies and on coercion, this one is, too -- it is no exception; it's only that this particular empire is on a historically unprecedentedly large scale, dominating all continents. Support that, and you're welcomed into the major (i.e., billionaire-backed) 'news' media in America, and in its allied countries. This is America's 'democracy' . (Of course, an article such as this one is not 'journalism' in America and its allied countries; it's merely "blogging." So, it won't be found there though it's being submitted everywhere. It will be accepted and published at only the honest news-sites. A reader may Web-search the headline here in order to find out which ones those are. Not many 'news'media report the institutionalized corruptness of the 'news'media; they just criticize one-another, in the way that the politicians do, which is bipartisan -- the bipartisan dictatorship. But the rot that's actually throughout the 'news'media, is prohibited to be reported about and published, in and by any of them. It is totally suppressed reality. Only the few honest news-sites will publish this information and its documentation, the links here.)

However, actually, the first time that the term either "neoconservatism" or "neo-conservatism" is known to have been used, was in the British magazine, The Contemporary Review , January 1883, by Henry Dunkley, in his "The Conservative Dilemma" where "neo-conservative" appeared 8 times, and was contrasted to traditional "conservatism" because, whereas the traditional type "Toryism" was pro-aristocratic, anti-democratic, and overtly elitist; the new type was pro-democratic, anti-aristocratic, and overtly populist (which no form of conservatism honestly is -- they're all elitist): "What is this new creed of yours? That there must be no class influence in politics? That any half-dozen hinds on my estate are as good as so many dukes? That the will of the people is the supreme political tribunal? That if a majority at the polls bid us abolish the Church and toss the Crown into the gutter we are forthwith to be their most obedient servants?" "No: from whatever point of view we consider the question, it is plain that the attempt to reconstruct the Tory party on a Democratic basis cannot succeed." "The Tories have always been adepts at conservation, but the things they have been most willing to conserve were not our liberties but the restrictions put upon our liberties." "The practical policy of Conservatism would not alter, and could not be altered much, but its pretensions would have to be pitched in a lower key." "Here we seem to get within the smell of soup, the bustle of evening receptions, and the smiles of dowagers. The cares which weigh upon this couple of patriot souls cannot be described as august. It is hardly among such petty anxieties that the upholders of the Empire and the pilots of the State are bred." "The solemn abjuration which is now proposed in the name of Neo-conservatism resembles a charge of dynamite." He viewed neo-conservatives as being let's-pretend populists, whose pretense at being democrats will jeopardize the Empire, not strengthen it. Empire, and its rightness, were so deeply rooted in the rulers' psyche, it went unchallenged. In fact, at that very time, in the 1880s, Sir Cecil Rhodes was busy creating the foundation for the UK-US empire that now controls most of the world .

The modern pro-Israel neoconservatism arose in the 1960s when formerly Marxist Jewish intellectuals in New York City and Washington DC, who were even more anti-communist than anti-nazi, became impassioned with the US empire being extended to the entire world by spreading 'democracy' (and protection of Israel) as if this Israel-protecting empire were a holy crusade not only against the Soviet Union, which was demonized by them, but against Islam, which also was demonized by them (since they were ethnocentric Jews and the people whose land the 'Israelis' had stolen were overwhelmingly Muslims -- and now were very second-class citizens in their own long-ancestral and also birth-land). This was how they distinguished themselves from "paleoconservatism" which wasn't nearly so Messianic, but which was more overtly ethnocentric, though ethnic Christian, instead of ethnic Jewish. The "paleoconservatives" were isolationists, not imperialists. They originated from the opponents of America's entry into WW II against the imperialists of that time, who were the fascists. Those American "isolationists" would have given us a world controlled by Hitler and his Axis allies. All conservatism is absurd, but there are many forms of it, none of which makes intelligent sense.

The roots of neoconservatism are 100% imperialistic, colonialist, supremacist, and blatantly evil. They hate Russia because they still crave to conquer it , and don't know how, short of nuclear annihilation, which would be extremely dangerous, even for themselves. So, they endanger everyone.

[Jan 18, 2020] The White House said on Friday that it was the Obama administration that authorized former national security adviser Michael Flynn's contacts with Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak during President Trump's transition, according to CNN.

Jan 18, 2020 | www.theamericanconservative.com

TISO_AX2 Mary Myers a day ago

In fact it is classified information..highly classified according to news reports. And so we're likely to never see it. Flynn was forced out for some reason, presumably good ones. It's hard to say anything for certain because the White House was in disarray in Feb2017. DJT's inexperience in government was glaringly obvious in the first couple of months of his administration. He mishandled several issues badly, paticularly the Flynn episode and James Comey. I said then that he should have replaced Comey on Day 1. Had he done so none of the mess of "Russian collusion" would likely have ever come about. Although he usually gets things right, eventually, his (early) tendencies toward delayed action cost him.
Mary Myers TISO_AX2 a day ago
They always claim something is highly classified when they want to conceal something that will incriminate or embarrass them before the American people.

Trump came into office without an army of bureaucrats to fill all the jobs in the government behemoth. He had to put in people that had been vehemently opposed to him in order to get confirmations. That's why the expression, "The new boss, same as the old boss." And it has certainly been true of Trump regarding foreign policy.

TISO_AX2 Mary Myers 20 hours ago
Well, since it was under Obama that they intercepted Flynn's calls, that's where the classification came from. The USG grows and maintains its power through myriad levels of secrecy. (I was in the game as a CIA communications specialist for 8 years). The game is thoroughly bipartisan.
The White House said on Friday that it was the Obama administration that authorized former national security adviser Michael Flynn's contacts with Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak during President Trump's transition, according to CNN.

[Jan 18, 2020] In a way the brainwashed Americans and neoliberal propagandists hatred of Russia is hilarious

Jan 18, 2020 | www.theamericanconservative.com

Wezz Gary Sellars a day ago

"Russiagate is a hoax" Where did I hear that before?

Oh yes, from Trump about 1000 times... strange that even though he said he was innocent he had to keep telling us every time he opened his mouth... it makes me suspicious for some reason. That and the fact that Trump has been caught lying a few times.

Antiphon Wezz a day ago
I usually assess the validity of such claims on something more substantial than OrangeManBad.
Aker Wezz a day ago • edited
Your hatred of Russia is hilarious. Doubly when Amerilards have a history of interference in other country's governments.

America is objectively a more violent country than Russia. It isn't Russia that has ridicously high violent crime scores despite its wealth. Invaded Afghanistan, attacked Iraq, provided aid for Islamists who'd go on to build ISIS.

I don't recall Putin's regime achieving a higher bodycount than America under Bush with Obama. Keep pretending Putin's some villain from childish stories like Harry Potter or Black Panther.

Aker Aker 20 hours ago • edited
https://en.wikipedia.org/wi...

America's homicide level is Notably higher than West Europe's and Far Eastern lands like Japan. Russia's is only somewhat higher, and is notably less wealthy.

thelastindependentYankee Aker 6 hours ago
The Gulags were resorts I know.
Aker thelastindependentYankee 4 hours ago
Tell us when you plan to shut down Guantanamo Bay and end your dysfunctional prison system. Also, Murica supported enough regimes.
EliteCommInc. Wezz 21 hours ago
It would be interesting if had as much veracity as a hoax ---

but it lacks even that.

Aker Wezz 20 hours ago
https://www.washingtontimes...

https://www.nytimes.com/200...

Apologize for American interference in other countries' governments.

John Mann Wezz 12 hours ago
A stopped clock is right twice a day. Hey, Saddam Hussein turned out to be telling the truth about WMDs.
Aker Gary Sellars 20 hours ago
It's an attempt to assuage a failed presidential candidate and give a target to blame for how society is. If not Trump himself, then Russia.

[Jan 18, 2020] Putin plants to prohibit dual citizens to serve in government

Highly recommended!
Jan 18, 2020 | www.unz.com

Peripatetic Commenter , says: Show Comment January 17, 2020 at 9:43 pm GMT

I don't think it will be long before we see Congress in the US calling for invasion of Russia on the grounds of a lack of diversity, lack of respect for LGBTP and so forth.

[Jan 16, 2020] TRANSCRIPT Putin's Address to the Federal Assembly

Jan 16, 2020 | off-guardian.org

This is about fight with fifth column... The time for those changes is long overdue.

I truly believe that it is time to introduce certain changes to our country's main law, changes that will directly guarantee the priority of the Russian Constitution in our legal framework.

What does it mean? It means literally the following: requirements of international law and treaties as well as decisions of international bodies can be valid on the Russian territory only to the point that they do not restrict the rights and freedoms of our people and citizens and do not contradict our Constitution.

Second, I suggest formalising at the constitutional level the obligatory requirements for those who hold positions of critical significance for national security and sovereignty. More precisely, the heads of the constituent entities, members of the Federation Council, State Duma deputies, the prime minister and his/her deputies, federal ministers, heads of federal agencies and judges should have no foreign citizenship or residence permit or any other document that allows them to live permanently in a foreign state.

The goal and mission of state service is to serve the people, and those who enter this path must know that by doing this they inseparably connect their lives with Russia and the Russian people without any assumptions and allowances.

Requirements must be even stricter for presidential candidates. I suggest formalising a requirement under which presidential candidates must have had permanent residence in Russia for at least 25 years and no foreign citizenship or residence permit and not only during the election campaign but at any time before it too.

I know that people are discussing the constitutional provision under which one person cannot hold the post of the President of the Russian Federation for two successive terms. I do not regard this as a matter of principle, but I nevertheless support and share this view.

I have already said before that our goal is to ensure high living standards and equal opportunities for all throughout the country. It is towards this goal that our national projects and development plans are aimed.


Stephen Morrell ,

Putin clearly is the most informed and visionary bourgeois politician in the world today, by a country mile. He not only is attempting to address the very real real social, demographic and economic needs of Russia, in his usual comprehensive manner, but also and cannily is co-opting many of the expectations that the USSR used to fulfil, attempting to neutralise any socialist political sentiments in the Russian population. Putin is the Bismarck of Russia.

richard le sarc ,

Russia's economic situation, within the global capitalist system, with its large reserves, much in gold, no exposure to the toilet paper of US Treasuries, and substantial local self-sufficiency in agriculture (thank-you sanctions)means that when the Western debt Ponzi Himalaya implodes, the Russians will be pretty much immune to the consequences.

richard le sarc ,

I agree entirely, but Putin has no alternative. Any chink in his armour and the USA will destroy Russia and break it up into fragments as they did in Yugoslavia, the USSR and wish to do in China. I rather think that Putin knows full well how dire is the global ecological situation, but he needs to balance less enlightened forces at home, and the 'Atlanticist' Quislings.

BigB ,

I don't disagree either: but that is not my point. The Atlanticists are waiting in the wings for another four years. Last time I checked: they still command 80% of Russian private property. And were expropriating $25bn pa annum in capital flight which has slowed slightly in the last few years. I read the Saker too. There is a deadlock and uneasy power sharing arrangement internally. But you may have missed the time when the Saker admitted "Putin is a neoliberal"?

It may be difficult to disentangle our vision from the neoliberal-statist-market ontology we are being repressed by but that is what we must do. We cannot expect neoliberal capitalist social inclusivity to save us from ecological catastrophe. Nor can we expect to grow economically into humanism: when exponential growth is what is destroying any lasting chance of a purely sustainable human-emancipatory freedom. Putin may not have a choice: but we do. The neoliberal-statist-market ontology is globally self-determined to produce total failure as its inevitable and only possible outcome. This is known a 'parametric determinism' when we automatically follow a maladaptive 'rational' self-optimising behaviour pattern long after it failed as it did in 2007. There is no recovery possible, and technology only speeds total failure whilst masking the ecological destruction it is accelerating.

States have to think and act in a pre-determined way that is true. But we do not have to think like that. Not if there is to be any alternative or succession of humanity ex-post the neoliberal-statist-market ontology which is morally, ecologically, humanistically and most importantly *actually* bankrupt at this point.

Do we exit a 350 year process of exponentially disproportionate wealth distribution, deliberate maldevelopment and global dehumanisation with all the wealth in the hands of those who benefited from the expropriation? Or do we attempt a redistribution and develop a new, hitherto unknown (and unknowable under capitalist alienation), value set where everyone globally has equal access to resources and a right to life as a birthright?

The decision is not beyond you or I: but it will take the development of the assessment of capitalism on other than its own neoliberal-statist-market ontological terms. No state or state leader can develop humanity on the path of less-is-more it needs to take but the people can. That's all.

richard le sarc ,

Putin is either a believing neo-liberal, in which case he is part of the problem you identify, or he is using it through necessity. I could not agree more with your diagnosis of the omnicidal nature of capitalism, and the inability of so many to visualise the end of capitalism-they more easily can conceive of the end of humanity. In fact I rather think that that is the way in which the ruling parasites intend to save their own bacon, by allowing the ecological Holocaust to cull the 90% of 'useless eaters' that the ruling elites fear and despise, and who they see only as a threat. Their labour is no longer required in an age of automation, robotisation and computerisation, and even their consumption is today superfluous. The ecological Holocaust has passed numerous tipping-points and points of no return, while the IPCC downplays the extremity of our situation, the Right still denies it is even happening, and the public is slowly waking up, too late of course. We've just experienced a fire Holocaust, yet the Pentecostal thug PM, 'Smoko' Morrison, who is surely seeing it all as God's Will and the sign of the coming End Times that his cult so longs for, utterly refuses to reduce CO2 emissions beyond a ludicrous 28% by 2030 from 2005 (base-line creep)levels, 'target', that we will not come close to. And now it is raining, a little, so the Great Austrayan Mediocracy can go back to their slumber. But they'll 'Wake in Fright', again, soon.

Hugh O'Neill ,

"It is very important that they adopt the true values ​​of a large family – that family is love, happiness, the joy of motherhood and fatherhood, that family is a strong bond of several generations, united by respect for the elderly and care for children, giving everyone a sense of confidence, security, and reliability. If the younger generations accept this situation as natural, as a moral and an integral part and reliable background support for their adult life, then we will be able to meet the historical challenge of guaranteeing Russia's development as a large and successful country."

I know very little of Russia alas, but the over-riding impression I take from this speech is President Putin's depth and breadth grasp of detail and concern for every aspect of Russian society – and his frustration that decisions made at federal level do not transform into concrete action at regional levels. The curse of bureaucracy and local fiefdoms jealous of their power and autonomy.

I was fully expecting him to come up a resonating phrase like: "Ask not what your country can do for you. Ask instead what you can for your country." For Russia to have (seemingly) escaped the rapacious talons of the vulture capitalists unleashed by the Yeltsin puppet ought to be a lesson for us all.

Finally, in international politics, he remains impeccably diplomatic, restrained and wise. Would that there were more world leaders of such calibre.

Hugh O'Neill ,

Leadership and Learning are indispensable to each other. Looking at the calibre of Presidents since JFK, it seems that all the best candidates were either killed off or scared off. All the Unspeakable can do is kill in answer to any and all problems.

richard le sarc ,

Imagine the money freed if US military expenditure was not 90% graft and inefficiency.

richard le sarc ,

His manifest virtues are precisely why the vermin of the Western ruling elites hate him so psychotically.

[Jan 16, 2020] https://www.theguardian.com/news/2020/jan/07/freedom-without-constraints-how-the-us-squandered-its-cold-war-victory

Jan 16, 2020 | www.theguardian.com

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News Opinion Sport Culture Lifestyle The long read Freedom without constraints: how the US squandered its cold war victory cwt Composite: Guardian Design/Getty The US believed the American way of life was humankind's ultimate destiny. But unrestrained greed has led to an era of injustice and division. By Andrew Bacevich

Tue 7 Jan 2020 01.00 EST Last modified on Thu 16 Jan 2020 06.09 EST

Shares 1,002 'W ithout the Cold War, what's the point of being an American?" Harry "Rabbit" Angstrom, the novelist John Updike's late-20th-century everyman, posed that question just as the "long twilight struggle" was winding down. More than quarter of a century later, the plaintive query still awaits a definitive answer.

Indeed, the passage of time has only sown confusion about whether there is a point to being an American. Even as the cold war was ending, Updike's everyman was not alone in feeling at a loss. By the 1980s, the cold war had become more than a mere situation or circumstance. It was a state of mind.

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Most Americans had come to take its existence for granted. Like the polar ice cap or baseball's status as the national pastime, it had acquired an appearance of permanence. So its passing caught citizens unaware. Those charged with managing the cold war were, if anything, even more surprised. The enterprise to which they had devoted their professional lives had suddenly vanished. Here was a contingency that the sprawling US national security apparatus, itself a product of the anti-communist crusade, had failed to anticipate.

On one level, of course, the surprise could not have been more gratifying. In the epic competition pitting west against east, the god-fearing against the godless and democracy against totalitarianism, "our side" had won. All-out nuclear war had been averted. The cause of freedom, which Americans felt certain they themselves embodied, had prevailed. Victory was decisive, sweeping and unequivocal.

In another sense, however, the passing of the cold war could not have been more disorienting. In 1987, Georgi Arbatov, a senior adviser to the Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev , had warned: "We are going to do a terrible thing to you – we are going to deprive you of an enemy."

As the Soviet Union passed out of existence, Americans were left not just without that enemy, but without even a framework for understanding the world and their place in it. However imperfectly, the cold war had, for several decades, offered a semblance of order and coherence. The collapse of communism shattered that framework. Where there had been purposefulness and predictability, now there was neither.

Winning the cold war brought Americans face-to-face with a predicament comparable to that confronting the lucky person who wins the lottery: hidden within a windfall is the potential for monumental disaster. Putting that money to good use while avoiding the pitfalls inherent in suddenly acquired riches calls for prudence and self-awareness – not easily demonstrated when the big house, luxury car and holiday home you have always wanted are yours for the asking.

Similarly, the end of the cold war might have given Americans pause, especially since the issues at hand were of considerably greater significance than homes and cars. At least in theory, the moment might have invited reflection on some first-order questions, such as: what is the meaning of freedom? What does freedom allow? What obligations does it impose? Whom or what does it exclude?


O f course, Americans had been wrestling with such questions since well before 1776 , the answers evolving over time. During the several decades of the cold war, however, the exigencies of the east-west rivalry had offered a reason to throttle down impulses to explore freedom's furthermost boundaries. Except on the fringes of American politics, most citizens accepted the word from Washington that their way of life was under grave threat. In the pecking order of national priorities, addressing that threat – defending freedom rather than enlarging it – tended to take precedence over other considerations.

This is not to suggest that cold-war Americans were a compliant lot. They were not. From the 1950s, misleadingly enshrined as a decade of conformity, through the Ronald Reagan-dominated 80s, domestic crises and controversies were constants. Among the issues energising or enraging Americans were civil liberties, the nuclear arms race, mismanaged wars of dubious provenance, challenges to artistic tradition, leftwing and rightwing radicalism, crass materialism that coexisted with widespread poverty and a host of simmering issues connected to race, sex and gender. Yet through it all, a common outlook, centred on resistance to the "red threat", endured. For most citizens most of the time, the cold war itself sufficed to explain "the point of being an American".

The collapse of the Soviet empire between 1989 and 1991 robbed that outlook of its last vestiges of authority. Rarely, if ever, had the transition from one historical period to another occurred quite so abruptly, with such a precise set of demarcations, and with such profound implications. As if in an instant, the discipline that the cold war had imposed vanished. The absurdity of defining reality as an either/or choice – red or dead, slave or free, good v evil – now became blazingly apparent. The impact on American ambitions and expectations was akin to removing the speed limiter from an internal combustion engine. Suddenly the throttle opened up. The future appeared uniquely promising, offering Americans a seemingly endless array of choices, while confronting them with few evident constraints. Everything seemed possible.

Confident that an era of unprecedented US economic, military and cultural ascendancy now beckoned, members of an intoxicated elite threw caution to the winds. They devised – and promulgated – a new consensus consisting of four elements.

Germans on top of the Berlin Wall in front of the Brandenburg Gate on 10 November 1989. Photograph: Fabrizio Bensch/Reuters

The first of these was globalisation or, more precisely, globalised neoliberalism. Stripped to its essence, globalisation was all about wealth creation: unconstrained corporate capitalism operating on a planetary scale in a world open to the movement of goods, capital, ideas and people would create wealth on a hitherto unimagined scale.

The second element was global leadership, a euphemism for hegemony or, more simply still, for empire. At its core, global leadership was all about order: unchallengeable military might would enable the US to manage and police a postcolonial yet implicitly imperial order favourable to American interests and values. Through the exercise of global leadership, the US would enforce globalisation. Order and abundance would go hand in hand.

The third element of the consensus was freedom, an ancient word now drastically revised. The new conception of freedom emphasised autonomy, with traditional moral prohibitions declared obsolete and the removal of constraints maximising choice. Order and abundance together would underwrite freedom, relieving Americans of existential concerns about safety and survival to which those less privileged were still obliged to attend.

The final element of the consensus was presidential supremacy, with the occupant of the Oval Office accorded quasi-monarchical prerogatives and status. Implicit in presidential supremacy was a radical revision of the political order. While still treated as sacred writ, the constitution no longer described the nation's existing system of governance. Effectively gone, for example, was the concept of a federal government consisting of three equal branches. Ensuring the nation's prosperity, keeping Americans safe from harm, and interpreting the meaning of freedom, the president became the centre around which all else orbited, the subject of great hopes, and the target of equally great scorn should he fail to fulfil the expectations that he brought into office.

All these elements together constituted a sort of operating system. The purpose of this operating system, unseen but widely taken for granted, was to cement the primacy of the US in perpetuity, while enshrining the American way of life as the ultimate destiny of humankind. According to the calendar, the end of the 20th century, frequently referred to as the American century, was then drawing near. Yet with the cold war concluding on such favourable terms, the stage appeared set for a prolonged American epoch.

This, however, was not to be.


T he US wasted little time in squandering the advantages it had gained by winning the cold war. Events at home and abroad put the post-cold war consensus to the test, unmasking its contradictions and exposing its premises as delusional. Although globalisation did enable some to acquire great wealth, it left behind many more, while fostering egregious inequality. The assertion of global leadership provided American soldiers with plentiful opportunities to explore exotic and unfamiliar lands, but few would mistake the results for even an approximation of dominion, much less peace and harmony.

Instead, Americans came to accept war as habitual. And while the drive for individual empowerment removed constraints, it did little to promote the common good. An enlarged conception of freedom brought with it a whiff of nihilism. As for exalting the chief executive as a visionary leader, it yielded a succession of disappointments, before imploding in November 2016.

The post-cold war moment, dating from the early 90s and spanning the administrations of Bill Clinton , George W Bush and Barack Obama, turned out to be remarkably brief. By 2016, large numbers of ordinary Americans had concluded, not without reason, that the post-cold war consensus was irretrievably defective. Globalised neoliberalism, militarised hegemony, individual empowerment and presidents elevated to the status of royalty might be working for some, but not for them. They also discerned, again not without cause, that establishment elites subscribing to that consensus, including the leaders of both political parties, were deaf to their complaints and oblivious to their plight.

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By turning their country over to Donald Trump , those Americans signalled their repudiation of that very consensus. That Trump himself did not offer anything remotely like a reasoned alternative made his elevation to the presidency all the more remarkable. He was a protest candidate elected by a protest vote. In that regard, the 2016 presidential election marked a historical turning point comparable in significance to the fall of the Berlin Wall a quarter of a century earlier.

As the cold war had evolved from the late 40s into the 80s, the rhetoric of freedom remained central to American political discourse. Among members of the intelligentsia, fads came and went, but none displaced freedom as the defining issue of the age. As the designated "leader of the free world", each US president was in turn expected to talk the talk. From Truman through to Reagan, with differing levels of eloquence, none failed to do so.

The way it ended – with euphoric young Germans dancing on the wall – imparted to the entire cold war a retrospective moral clarity that it did not deserve. The cold war tainted everything it touched. As an episode in world history, it was a tragedy of towering proportions. So its passing ought to have called for reflection, remorse, repentance, even restitution. Yet the prevailing mood allowed for none of these, at least as far as most Americans were concerned. Instead, out of an era punctuated throughout by anxiety and uncertainty came a sense that a dazzling future lay just ahead.

In effect, the passing of the cold war relieved Americans of any further obligation to exhibit more than nominal cohesion. Except as a matter of personal preference, virtues such as self-discipline and self-denial, once deemed essential to enabling a nation to stand firm against existential threats, now became passé. The spirit of the post-cold war era prioritised self-actualisation and self-indulgence over self-sacrifice.

The demise of communism removed the last remaining constraints on the operation of global capitalism. By leaving the US militarily pre-eminent, the end of the cold war removed any remaining constraints on the use of American coercive power. Similarly, for many ordinary Americans, particularly those of a progressive bent, the passing of the cold war did away with any lingering constraints on matters related to "lifestyle". No longer would they defer to the customary arbiters of propriety and "good taste" in determining what was permissible and what was not. For transcendent authority, progressives looked to the autonomous self.


'A t the heart of liberty is the right to define one's own concept of existence, of meaning, of the universe, and of the mystery of human life." So wrote supreme court justice Anthony Kennedy in a famous decision handed down shortly after the cold war ended.

Kennedy's reformulation of liberty, however grandiose, was well suited to the mood that swept through elite quarters at the end of history . By comparison, the inalienable rights specified in the famous Declaration of Independence in 1776 now seemed cramped, stingy and inadequate. Freedom was in line for a makeover.

The emerging post-cold war conception of freedom was nothing if not expansive. It recognised few limits and imposed fewer obligations, with one notable exception: compliance was non-negotiable. As always, the American definition of liberty, however recently revised, was universally applicable, as valid in Bogotá and Dakar as it was in Boston and Denver.

What did this signify in practice? Allowing individuals maximum latitude to reach their own conclusions regarding the concepts of existence, meaning, the universe and the mystery of human life yielded what sort of society? The quarter-century that elapsed between the fall of the Berlin Wall and Donald Trump's election provided a tentative answer to that question. Part of that answer came in the form of progress towards eliminating the remaining vestiges of racism, empowering women and reducing discrimination experienced by LGBTQ+ Americans.

Granted, progress does not imply decisive and irreversible success. Yet during the post-cold war period, American society became more tolerant, more open, more accepting and less judgmental. Attitudes toward people of colour, women and gays that in the 50s had been normative and remained widespread in the 60s and 70s had, by 2016, become unacceptable in polite society. Yet for more than a few Americans, Justice Kennedy's notion of liberty as an opportunity to ponder life's ultimate questions had little relevance. In practical terms, the exercise of freedom, undertaken in an environment in which consumption and celebrity had emerged as preeminent values, encouraged conformity rather than independence. At least notionally, Americans now enjoyed more freedom than ever before. Yet from every direction, but especially from Madison Avenue, Hollywood and Silicon Valley, came cues for how to make the most of the freedom now on offer. And however much you had, you always needed more.

President Ronald Reagan (R) with Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev in Washington in December 1987. Photograph: Gary Hershorn/Reuters

So along with freedom came stress, anxiety and a sense of not quite measuring up, or a fear of falling behind as the demands of daily life seemed to multiply. For some, freedom meant alienation, anomie and despair. It did nothing to prevent, and in some instances arguably fostered, self-destructive or antisocial behaviour.

So in 2016, as another presidential election approached, Americans were able to claim the following distinctions:

• One in six were taking prescription psychiatric drugs such as antidepressants or anti-anxiety meds.

• More than 16 million adults and more than 3 million adolescents were suffering from significant depression.

• More than 1.9 million Americans were regularly using cocaine, with a half million hooked on heroin and 700,000 on methamphetamine.

• That year opioid overdoses killed 46,000, a new record.

• Binge drinking had reached epidemic proportions, with one in six US adults binge drinking several times a month and consuming seven drinks per binge; according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, bingeing was especially common among younger and more affluent Americans.

• Nearly 45,000 were taking their own lives annually, the national suicide rate increased by 24% since 1999; within the previous decade the suicide rate of teenage girls had doubled and of boys had jumped by 40%.

• Smartphone addiction was joining more traditional compulsions, with the average person checking their smartphone 110 times a day, impelled by Fomo – a fear of missing out.

• Compulsive-buying syndrome, AKA shopping addiction, afflicted an estimated 6% of the population; a comparable number were compulsive hoarders.

• On a daily basis, 11 million Americans, mostly women, struggled with eating disorders such as anorexia and bulimia, while roughly 40% of adults and nearly 19% of children and adolescents were obese.

• Cosmetic surgeons were performing more than 17m procedures annually, with buttock augmentation and labiaplasty enjoying a particular spike in popularity.

• Forty-million Americans were regularly visiting online porn sites.

• The number of Americans infected with sexually transmitted diseases in 2016 surpassed 2 million, according to the CDC, "the highest number ever".

• An estimated 24.7 million children were growing up in fatherless households, with such children substantially more likely to drop out of school, abuse drugs and alcohol and kill themselves; girls raised without a father present were four times more likely to get pregnant as teenagers.

• Although difficult to quantify with precision, 676,000 American children in 2016 were victims of abuse or neglect.

• Exercising their right to choose, American women were terminating around 650,000 unwanted pregnancies each year, despite the widespread availability of contraceptives.

• Exercising their right to bear arms, Americans had accumulated more than 40% of the planet's small arms; the US arsenal in private hands was larger than that of the next 25 countries combined.

• Meanwhile, more than 33,000 Americans were being killed in firearms-related incidents annually.

• Year in and year out, the US had the world's highest incarceration rate, no other developed nation coming anywhere close.

• Polling data showed that social trust – how Americans felt about government institutions and their fellow citizens – had sunk to an all-time low. Perhaps for that reason, when it came to voting, most Americans couldn't be bothered; voter turnout in the US lagged behind that of most other developed countries.

• In an increasingly networked society, with two-thirds of Americans on Facebook, chronic loneliness afflicted a large portion of the population.

• In a phenomenon described as "deaths by despair", the life expectancy of white working-class American males was dropping, a trend without historical precedent.

• The nation's birthrate had fallen below the rate needed to sustain a stable overall population; America had ceased to reproduce itself.

• Not to be overlooked, in their pursuit of life, liberty, and happiness, Americans were polluting, wasting food and generating trash with abandon, leading the world in each category.


A rguably, Americans were enjoying more freedom than ever. Were they happier as a consequence? Polls suggested otherwise. In the 2007 "world happiness" standings, the US had ranked third among developed countries. By 2016, its position had plummeted to 13th.

By no means am I suggesting that a single such statistic holds the key to assessing life in the US. It does not. Nor do the various penchants and pathologies enumerated above. Yet taken together, they suggest a society in which discontent, dysfunction and sheer perversity were rampant.

As with globalised neoliberalism, some Americans not only coped with seemingly limitless freedom, but also luxuriated in the opportunities that it offered. For sophisticates inhabiting Brooklyn's Park Slope, radical autonomy could well prove to be a boon; for those stuck in a ghetto on Chicago's South Side, not so much. As for the accompanying underside, those in possession of sufficient resources could insulate themselves from its worst effects – just as the affluent were able to insulate themselves from the accumulating post-cold war military misadventures by simply allowing others to shoulder the burden.

What role did Trump play in shaping this US that worked nicely for some while leaving many others adrift and vulnerable? None at all. Globalisation, the pursuit of militarised hegemony, a conception of freedom conferring rights without duties, and a political system centred on a quasi-monarchical chief of state each turned out to have a substantial downside. Yet the defects of each made their appearance well before Trump's entry into politics, even if elites, held in thrall by the post-cold war outlook, were slow to appreciate their significance. None of those defects can be laid at his feet.

If anything, Trump himself had displayed a considerable aptitude for turning such defects to his own advantage. In the US, post-cold war, he was prominent among those who enriched themselves, lived large and let others do the dirty work, while also shielding themselves from the difficulties that made life a trial for many of their fellow citizens. In an era of con artists, cowards and cynics, Trump became a modern equivalent of showman PT Barnum, parlaying the opportunities at hand into fortune, celebrity, lots of golf, plenty of sex and eventually the highest office in the land.

Yet for our purposes, the key point is this: Trump did not create the conditions in which the campaign of 2016 was to take place. Instead, to a far greater extent than any of his political rivals, he demonstrated a knack for translating those conditions into votes. Here, the moment met the man.

Trump's critics saw him as an abomination. Perhaps he was. Yet he was also very much a man of his time. In the end, what won him the presidency was his capacity to push the buttons of millions of voters who believed themselves ill-served and left behind – abandoned, even – by establishment politicians of both parties.

Implicit in his promise to "make America great again" was an admission that greatness itself, which Americans had long since come to believe was theirs by right, had been lost, with no one taking responsibility and no one, apart from Trump himself, venturing to explain how it had even happened. The critical word that imparted to his campaign slogan its formidable persuasive power was "again". As Tom Engelhardt has written, it represented an acknowledgment that self-congratulatory terms such as "great", "super", "exceptional" or "indispensable" no longer reflected the actually existing American condition. Millions of ordinary citizens recognised this as self-evidently true. Arrangements, agreements and advantages that Americans had once prized had been squandered or thrown away. And yet no politician other than Trump dared to utter that truth aloud.

As a strategic thinker, Trump had no particular talent. Yet as a strategic sensor, he was uniquely gifted, possessing an intuitive genius for reading the temper of his supporters and stoking their grievances. Yet by no means did Trump create those grievances – they had festered during the quarter-century after the cold war ended. He merely recognised their existence and, in doing so, made himself the champion of the aggrieved and the one person they came to believe who might respond to their plight.

The post-cold war recipe for renewing the American century has been tried and found wanting. A patently amoral economic system has produced neither justice nor equality, and will not. Grotesquely expensive and incoherent national security policies have produced neither peace nor a compliant imperium, and will not. A madcap conception of freedom unmoored from any overarching moral framework has fostered neither virtue nor nobility nor contentment, and won't anytime soon. Sold by its masterminds as a formula for creating a prosperous and powerful nation in which all citizens might find opportunities to flourish, it has yielded no such thing. This, at least, describes the conclusion reached by disenchanted Americans in numbers sufficient to elect as president someone vowing to run the post-cold war consensus through a shredder.

Donald Trump's detractors charge him with dividing the country when, in fact, it was pervasive division that vaulted him to the centre of American politics in the first place. The divide is deepest and least reconcilable between those Americans for whom the trajectory of events since the cold war pointed upward, and those who found in those same events evidence of decline and decay, and who sensed they had been had. At the most fundamental level, the inhabitants of one camp believe that talent, skills and connections will enable them to determine their own destiny; they are masters of their own fate. In the other camp are those who see themselves as victims. As Obama put it while campaigning for the presidency in 2008, "they cling to guns or religion or antipathy toward people who aren't like them, or anti-immigrant sentiment or anti-trade sentiment as a way to explain their frustrations".

Trump did not create this cleavage. He merely turned it to his personal advantage. So, regardless of the date or terms of Trump's departure from office, the schism that allowed him to become president is likely to persist after he is gone. It's that schism, rather than the antics of the tycoon/reality TV star/demagogue who exploited it, that merits far more attention than it has received.

This is an edited extract from The Age of Illusions: How America Squandered Its Cold War Victory by Andrew Bacevich, published by Metropolitan Books/Holt

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[Jan 16, 2020] Americans Beware! Russia Can Hack Your Brain, Make You Believe Joe Biden Unfit For Oval Office by Robert Bridge

[satire]
Jan 15, 2020 | www.zerohedge.com

Authored by Robert Bridge via The Strategic Culture Foundation,

... ... ...

Courtesy of Bloomberg :

"U.S. intelligence and law enforcement officials are assessing whether Russia is trying to undermine Joe Biden in its ongoing disinformation efforts with the former vice president still the front-runner in the race to challenge President Donald Trump, according to two officials familiar with the matter

Part of the inquiry is to determine whether Russia is trying to weaken Biden by promoting controversy over his past involvement in U.S. policy toward Ukraine while his son worked for an energy company there."

So how exactly does Russia, in a scene straight out of A Clockwork Orange, tap into the frontal lobe section of the U.S. electorate and cause them to lose all confidence in their political favorites?

"A signature trait of Russian President Vladimir Putin 'is his ability to convince people of outright falsehoods,' William Evanina, director of the National Counterintelligence and Security Center, said in a statement. 'In America, [the Russians are] using social media and many other tools to inflame social divisions, promote conspiracy theories and sow distrust in our democracy and elections.'"

Yes, somehow those dastardly Russians have outsmarted the brightest and best-paid political strategists in Washington, D.C. by brandishing what amounts to some really persuasive memes over social media, and for just rubles on the dollar. The techies at Wired went so far as to call this epic assault on the fragile American cranium, "meme warfare to divide America." By way of evidence, it cited a very creative meme that screamed, "F*CK THE ELECTIONS," which was intended, as the ironclad argument goes, to cause a number of impressionable Americans to throw up their hands in a fit of collective exasperation and say, 'Ok, that's it. I'm staying at home on Election Day.'

Yes, it's really that easy! Imagine all the money the Russians and their radical new political technologies could have saved guys like casino tycoon, Sheldon Adelson, who showered the Trump campaign with $100 million dollars.

Many of those divisive Russian messages wormed their way onto Facebook, purportedly, where God only knows how many voter brains' turned to maggots and mush just staring at them. Yet one individual who actually recalls seeing one or two of these dangerous memes was Rob Goldman, former Vice President for Advertising on Facebook, who revealed via Twitter, another infected social media platform, some interesting information:

"Most of the coverage of Russian meddling involves their attempt to effect the outcome of the 2016 U.S. election. I have seen all of the Russian ads and I can say very definitively that swaying the election was *NOT* the main goal ."

Clearly, Goldman seems to have been under the sway of some folk Russian brainwashing technique, probably passed down from the time of Rasputin. In any case, Donald Trump himself took great satisfaction from that particular revelation, retweeting it to his millions of minions.

Most of the coverage of Russian meddling involves their attempt to effect the outcome of the 2016 US election. I have seen all of the Russian ads and I can say very definitively that swaying the election was *NOT* the main goal.

-- Rob Goldman (@robjective) February 17, 2018

Incidentally, it may or may not be relevant, but Goldman retired from Facebook in October 2019 after seven years with the company.

Russia, the gift that keeps on giving

Not only have the Democrats been able to use the Russia bogeyman as their excuse for losing the White House in 2016, they are able to summon this distant nuclear power whenever they wish to curb internet freedoms, which is pretty much every day now.

Now, fun-loving memes are under attack and may soon go the way of the DoDo bird ("A small office of Russian trolls could derail 241 years of U.S. political history with a handful of dank memes and an advertising budget that would barely buy you a billboard in Brooklyn," screamed insanely The Guardian ). At the same time, the freedom of speech is getting destroyed by vapid accusations of 'hate speech,' which, unless used to incite violence, is a totally meaningless term used to eliminate any conversation that is undesirable to the elite.

Meanwhile, only the mainstream media these days are permitted to dabble in 'conspiracy theories' even as their own false narratives have contributed to the pulverization of entire nations, as was the case in Iraq, for example, which sustained a full-blown U.S. military invasion in 2003 following debunked claims that Saddam Hussein was harboring weapons of mass destruction. That was the mother of all conspiracy theories that was pushed unchallenged by the mainstream media.

So back to Joe Biden.

Do intelligent Americans really need help from Russia to prove that just maybe the former Vice President is mentally and physically unfit to stand for the White House? Probably not. From whispering sweet nothings into the ears of any female within groping distance, to sucking on his wife's fingertips at a political rally, something just doesn't seem altogether right upstairs with Joe Biden. So what is the real story for dragging Russia, once again, into the internal swamp pit known as Washington, D.C.?

The Bloomberg article provides a big hint: "This time around, the narrative about Biden and Ukraine is well-publicized and being advanced by Trump, his personal attorney Rudy Giuliani and the president's Republican allies in Congress."

And that "narrative" has everything to do with not only the Democrats' frozen impeachment proceedings against the U.S. leader, which promises to have major connections to Ukraine, Joe Biden and his son Hunter, and quite possibly dozens of other top Democrats. In other words, the Democrats understand that pushing ahead with impeachment could be their ultimate downfall.

Although few Americans seem to remember that back in May of 2019, Trump granted U.S. Attorney General William Barr "full and complete authority" to investigate exactly how claims that Trump was 'conspiring with the Kremlin' in the 2016 presidential election had originated, the Democrats certainly have not.

Their bogus 'Russian collusion' claim provided the rationale for a four-year-long 'witch hunt' that began when the Democrats, relying on the flimsy findings contained in the so-called 'Steele dossier, managed to get approval from the FISA court to spy on the Trump campaign. Now, some top-ranking Democrats – never imagining Hillary Clinton would actually lose in 2016 – are understandably nervous as to what Barr and his assistant, federal attorney John Durham will divulge to the public in the coming months.

With so much riding on the line in 2020 , is anyone surprised that Bloomberg, the news affiliate owned and operated by Democratic contender Michael Bloomberg, is now reporting "U.S. officials are warning that Russia's election interference in 2020 could be more brazen than in the 2016 presidential race or the 2018 midterm election."

In other words, the racist ploy used by Democrats to explain their monumental defeat in 2016 did not end with the Mueller Report.

The conspiracy theory, promulgated by a media that is in effect just another branch of the Democratic National Committee, is being primed to explain not only possible criminal charges aimed at top Democrats in the coming months, but how Democrats, like Michael Bloomberg, failed once again to beat the seemingly unstoppable incumbent, Donald Trump. Tags Politics

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[Jan 16, 2020] RUSSIAN RESHUFFLE by Patrick Armstrong - Sic Semper Tyrannis

Jan 16, 2020 | turcopolier.typepad.com

RUSSIAN RESHUFFLE by Patrick Armstrong

(Written on the evening of. So subject to reconsideration/revision/outright denial as we learn more.)

I didn't expect any of it. Neither did anyone else, whatever the so-called experts outgassing on the US Garbage Media may be pretending. I don't know what it all means. Neither does anyone else. (Well Putin & Co do, but they keep their cards close to their chests. As we've just seen.)

What do we know? Putin gave his annual address to the Federal Council ( Rus ) ( Eng ) and started off with how important it was that the birthrate should be raised. Fair enough: he wants more Russians on the planet, the government's programs have ensured that there will be quite a few more but there are still more to come. Many programs planned; some of which will work: after all, not everything works out as we hoped does it? He mentioned how dangerous the world is – especially the MENA – and said at least Russia is pretty secure (as indeed it is except against lunatics addicted to the Book of Revelation .)

Then the constitutional stuff. He believes the Constitution needs a few tweaks. Important officials should really be Russians and not people with a get-out-of-jail-card/alternate-loyalty-card in their vests. Reasonable enough: they should "inseparably connect their lives with Russia and the Russian people without any assumptions and allowances." (Good idea actually. Can we in the West steal the idea? We vote for X but who does he vote for?) Russian law should take precedence over decrees contaminated by the " Rules-Based International Order" (" we make the rules , you follow our orders "). The PM should be named by the Duma. (A pretty big change, actually: let's have more details on the division of labour please. In some countries the head of state is The Boss – USA, Russia (now), France – in others the head of government is The Boss – Germany, Canada, Denmark. There is a serious carve up of powers question here that has to be worked out in detail.) Constitutional changes should be approved in a referendum. The President either should or should not be bound by the no-three-terms-in-a-row-rule (I personally can't figure out what "этим" refers to in "Не считаю, что этот вопрос принципиальный, но согласен с этим. Не считаю, что этот вопрос принципиальный, но согласен с этим." But, no doubt we will soon learn.)

So, a somewhat less presidential republic. Details to be decided. Many details. But I'm confident that it's been worked out and we will learn. Putin & Co have shown us over 20 years that they don't make things up on the fly.

Then we learned that the entire government had resigned – but individuals to stay in place until replaced. Then we learned – a fast few hours indeed! – that Dmitri Medvedev was replaced by somebody that no one (other than Russian tax specialists) had ever heard of: Mikhail Vladimirovich Mishustin. ( Russian Wiki entry – none in English so far.) Those cheering Medvedev's dismissal (something predicted and hoped for by a sector of Russianologists) had to then swallow this: not tossed out into ignominy and shame, as they wanted, but something else. Putin says that there is a clear distinction between government and presidential concerns; defence and security are clearly in the latter. But Medvedev has always been closely following defence and security issues and it is suitable and appropriate that he continue to do so. So a new position, deputy heard of the security council, will be created for him. So what are we to make of this? Medvedev has been given the boot and a sinecure? Or he's been given a crucial job in the new carve-up of responsibilities?

After all, Russia's problems keep getting bigger but nobody is getting any younger. Especially the problems from outside. For some years Washington, an implacable enemy of Moscow, has been getting less and less predictable. Lavrov and Kerry spend hours locked up negotiating a deal in Syria ; within a week the US military attacks a Syrian Army unit; "by mistake" . Who's in charge? Now with the murder of Soleimani, possibly on a Washington-approved peace mission, Washington has moved to another level of lawlessness and is exploring the next depth as it defies Baghdad's order to get out. A pirate power. The outside problems for Moscow aren't getting smaller, are they? Washington is certainly недоговороспособны – it's impossible to make an agreement with it and, if you should think you have done so, it will break it. A dangerous, uncontrollable madman, staggering around blowing everything up – is any foreign leader now to be assumed to be on Washington's murder list? Surviving its decay is a big job indeed. The problems are getting bigger in the Final Days of the Imperium Americanum.

So, maybe Moscow needs more people on the job.

So are we looking at a new division of labour in Moscow as part of managing the Transition? (To say nothing of the – what's the word? – Thucydides trap ? ). Mishustin looks after the nuts and bolt of Russia's economy and internal management. Medvedev looks after defence and security – something not likely to get smaller while Putin looks after the big picture?

But this is only the first step in The Transition and we will learn more soon.

[Jan 14, 2020] Mike Flynn Withdraws Guilty Plea Due To Government's Bad Faith, Vindictiveness, And Breach Of Plea Agreement'

Jan 14, 2020 | www.zerohedge.com

One week after federal prosecutors changed their tune in the Michael Flynn case - recommending he serve up to six months in prison for lying to investigators regarding his contacts with a Russian diplomat, the former National Security Adviser withdrew his guilty plea Tuesday afternoon .

In a 24-page court filing , Flynn accuses the government of "bad faith, vindictiveness, and breach of the plea agreement," and has asked his January 28th sentencing date to be postponed for 30 days.

General Flynn has moved to withdraw his guilty plea due to the "government's bad faith, vindictiveness, and breach of the plea agreement." pic.twitter.com/Qp5JcQjXmB

-- Techno Fog (@Techno_Fog) January 15, 2020

According to Flynn's counsel, prosecutors "concocted" Flynn's alleged "false statements by their own misrepresentations, deceit, and omissions."

"It is beyond ironic and completely outrageous that the prosecutors have persecuted Mr. Flynn, virtually bankrupted him, and put his entire family through unimaginable stress for three years," the filing continues.

"The prosecutors concocted the alleged 'false statements' (relating to FARA filing) by their own misrepresentations, deceit, and omissions." pic.twitter.com/o47WO8qClX

-- Techno Fog (@Techno_Fog) January 15, 2020

Prosecutors initially recommended no jail time over Flynn's cooperation in the Russiagate probes, however they flipped negative on him after he "sought to thwart the efforts of the government to hold other individuals, principally Bijan Rafiekian, accountable for criminal wrongdoing."

The 67-year-old Rafiekian, an Iranian-American and Flynn's former business partner, was charged with illegally acting as an unregistered agent of a foreign government. Prosecutors accused Flynn of failing to accept responsibility and "complete his cooperation" - as well as "affirmative efforts to undermine" the prosecution of Rafiekian."

More on this from attorney and researcher @Techno Fog:

After Flynn refused to lie for prosecutors (Van Grack), they retaliated by:

1) Reversing course and labeling Flynn a co-conspirator

2) Improperly contacted Flynn's son

3) Put Flynn's son on the witness list for intimidation purposes (never called as a witness) pic.twitter.com/fP4hpVXfGY

-- Techno Fog (@Techno_Fog) January 15, 2020

"The govt's tactics in relation for Mr. Flynn's refusal to 'compose' for the prosecution is a due process violation that can and should be stopped dead in its tracks by this Court" pic.twitter.com/ttcFGmyPv7

-- Techno Fog (@Techno_Fog) January 15, 2020

Read the filing below:

https://www.scribd.com/embeds/442971330


steve2241 , 1 minute ago link

Most of this prosecution of Flynn has been under TRUMP'S Justice Department! Isn't there ANYBODY in charge in this government? Lyndon Johnson would have literally knocked out an Attorney General that didn't do his bidding. He did, in fact, assault the head of the Federal Reserve back in the day - when America was America!

Hadenough1000 , 3 minutes ago link

He got a real attorney

Bastiat , 1 minute ago link

Highly recommend her book if you haven't read it: Licensed to Lie. She doesn't come by her contempt for these DOJ assholes casually.

[Jan 14, 2020] Freeland's New Role as Deputy Prime Minister Puts her 2nd in Command (of the Titanic?)

Notable quotes:
"... "positions her as one of the top candidates to take over the liberal party after Trudeau" ..."
"... Government Operations Committee ..."
"... "All liberal democracies in the world today are facing huge challenges, and for me the conclusion that pushed me to is; there are only 37 million Canadians. Hugely challenging world threats posed to the rules-based international order, greater threats since the 2nd World War. We have to be united in how we confront those challenges." ..."
"... Ever since her appointment to the role of Cabinet Minister in 2015, Freeland played the role assigned to her as a high level Rhodes Scholar and priestess of neo-liberalism. Springing from a Nazi-connected Ukrainian family based out of Alberta, Freeland made her mark working as lead editor in British Intelligence-controlled news agencies the London Economist, Thompson-Reuters, Financial Times and later Canada's Globe and Mail. Through these positions as "perception manager" of the super elite, she became friends with some of the most vicious Russian, Ukrainian and other eastern European oligarchs who rose to power under Perestroika and the liberalization of the east-bloc. ..."
"... The author is the founder of the Canadian Patriot Review and Director of the Rising Tide Foundation of Canada. He has authored 3 volumes of the series "The Untold History of Canada" and can be reached at matt.ehret@tutamail.com ..."
Jan 14, 2020 | canadianpatriot.org

editor / November 27, 2019 An interesting victory has been won for forces in Canada who have wished to clean up the mess made by the two disastrous years Chrystia Freeland has spent occupying the position of Foreign Minister of Canada. This victory has taken the form of a Freeland's removal from the position which she has used to destroy diplomatic relations with China, Russia and other nations targeted for regime change by her London-based controllers. Taking over the helm as Minister of Global Affairs is Francois-Philippe Champagne, former Minister of Infrastructure and ally of "old guard" Liberal elder Jean Chretien- both of whom have advocated positive diplomatic and business relations with China in opposition to Freeland for years.

As positive of a development as this is, the danger which Freeland represents to world peace and Canada's role in the New Emerging system led by the Eurasian Alliance should not be ignored, since she has now been given the role of Deputy Prime Minister, putting her into a position to easily take over the Party and the nation as 2 nd in command.

Already the Canadian press machine on all sides of the aisle are raising the prospect of Freeland's takeover of the Liberal Party as it "positions her as one of the top candidates to take over the liberal party after Trudeau" as one Globe and Mail reporter stated.

The Strange Case of Deputy Prime Ministers

The very role of Deputy Prime Minister is a strange one which has had many pundits scratching their heads, since the Privy Council position is highly under-defined, and was only created by Justin's father Pierre in 1977 as part of his "cybernetics revolution" which empowered the Privy Council Office and Prime Minister's Office under "scientific management" of a technocratic elite. Although it is technically the position of 2nd in Command, it is not like the position of Vice-President whose function has much greater constitutional clarity.

In some cases, the position has been ceremonial, and in others, like the case of Brian Mulroney's Dep. PM Don Mazankowski (1986-1993) who chaired the Government Operations Committee and led in imposing the nation-stripping NAFTA, the position was very powerful indeed. Some Prime Ministers have chosen not even to have a Deputy PM, and the last one (Anne McLellan) ended with the downfall of Paul Martin in 2006. McLellan and another former Deputy Prime Minister John Manley were both leading figures behind the creation of the think tank Canada2020 in 2003 that soon brought Justin and Obamaton behaviorists into a re-structuring of the Liberal Party of Canada during the Harper years, shedding it of its pro-China, pro-Russia, anti-NATO influences that had been represented by less technocratically-minded statesmen like Jean Chretien years earlier.

Personally, as a Canadian-based journalist who has done a fair bit of homework on Canadian history, and the structures of Canada's government, I honestly don't think the question of Freeland's becoming Prime Minister matters nearly as much as many believe for the simple reason that Justin is a well-known cardboard cut-out who simply doesn't know how to do anything terribly important without a teleprompter and experienced handlers. This is not a secret to other world leaders, and anyone familiar with the mountains of video footage taken from G7 events featuring the pathetic scene of little Justin chronically ignored by his peers goes far enough to demonstrate the point.

https://www.youtube.com/embed/JQwNIYB2Z6s?feature=oembed

Freeland's role in Canada has never had much to do with Canada, as much as it has with Canada's role as a geopolitical chess piece in a turbulent and changing world and her current role as Deputy Prime Minister as well as Minister for Intergovernmental Affairs can only be understood in those global terms.

Unity for the Sake of Greater Division

For Canada to play a useful role in obstructing the Eurasian-led New Silk Road paradigm sweeping across the globe in recent years, it requires the fragmenting American monarchy be kept in line.

The problem for the British Empire in this regard, is that the recent elections have demonstrated how divided Canada is with the Liberal Party suffering total losses across the Provinces of Alberta, Saskatchewan and Quebec due to the technocratic adherence to the Green New Deal agenda and resistance to actual industrial development initiatives. The collapse of living standards, and the lack of any policies for rebuilding the industrial base that 30 years of NAFTA have destroyed, has resulted not only in the rejection of the Liberal Party but has also awoken a renewed demand for separation in all three provinces.

Referring implicitly to the crisis of such "authoritarian regimes" as China, Russia, Iran and Trump's USA, as well as the need to decarbonize the world, Freeland put the problem she is assigned to fix in the following terms : "All liberal democracies in the world today are facing huge challenges, and for me the conclusion that pushed me to is; there are only 37 million Canadians. Hugely challenging world threats posed to the rules-based international order, greater threats since the 2nd World War. We have to be united in how we confront those challenges."

To put it simply, if centralized control were to break down at a time when the Belt and Road Initiative ( and its Polar Silk Road extension ) is redefining the world system OUTSIDE of the control of the western oligarchy, then it is clearly understood that the Green Agenda will fail, but the dynamics of the BRI will become hegemonic as Canada realizes (like the Greeks and Italians currently) that the only viable policies for growing the real economy is coming from China.

Some final words on Freeland, Neo-liberal High Priestess

Ever since her appointment to the role of Cabinet Minister in 2015, Freeland played the role assigned to her as a high level Rhodes Scholar and priestess of neo-liberalism. Springing from a Nazi-connected Ukrainian family based out of Alberta, Freeland made her mark working as lead editor in British Intelligence-controlled news agencies the London Economist, Thompson-Reuters, Financial Times and later Canada's Globe and Mail. Through these positions as "perception manager" of the super elite, she became friends with some of the most vicious Russian, Ukrainian and other eastern European oligarchs who rose to power under Perestroika and the liberalization of the east-bloc. She also became close friends with such golems as George Soros, Larry Summers and Al Gore embedding their institutions ever more deeply into Canada since she was brought into Canada2020 (her move to politics was facilitated by fellow Rhodes Scholar/Canada2020 leader Bob Rae abdicating his position as MP for Ontario in 2013).

When Foreign Minister Stephane Dion committed the crime of attempting to heal relations with China and called for a Russia-Canada Summit to deal mutually with Arctic development, counter-terrorism and space cooperation , he had to go. After an abrupt firing, Freeland was given his portfolio and immediately went to work in turning China and Russia into public enemies #1 and #2, passing the Magnintsky Act in 2017 allowing for the sanctioning of nations for human rights (easily falsified when Soros' White Helmets and other CIA/MI6-affiliated NGOs are seen as "on-the-ground" authorities documenting said abuse).

Her role as champion of NAFTA which Trump rightly threatened to scrap in order to re-introduce protective tariffs elevated her to a technocratic David fighting some orange Goliath, and her advocacy of the Green New Deal has been behind some of the most extreme energy/arctic anti-development legislation passed in Canada's history.

Whether it is though individual provinces claiming their rights to form independent treaties with Eurasian powers around cooperation on the BRI, or whether Canada can be returned to a pro-nation state orientation under the "Chretien faction" in the federal government, the current future of Canada is as under-defined as the role of "deputy minister". Either way the nation chooses navigate through the storm, it is certain that any commitment to staying on board the deck of the Titanic known as the "western neoliberal order" has only one cold and tragic outcome which Freeland and her ilk will drown before admitting to.

The author is the founder of the Canadian Patriot Review and Director of the Rising Tide Foundation of Canada. He has authored 3 volumes of the series "The Untold History of Canada" and can be reached at matt.ehret@tutamail.com

Facebook Twitter WordPress Print Kindle It November 27, 2019 in Miscellaneous . Tags: deep state , freeland , rhodes scholar , world government Related posts Unravelling the Mystery of the 'Annexation Movement of 1849' The 'Greta Effect': Are We Really This Time, for Certain Certain, Heading for the End Times? Living Under the Spectre of Hyperinflation: 1923 Weimar and Today Filters Video Player

https://www.youtube.com/embed/7QByzhXiF1U?controls=0&rel=0&disablekb=1&showinfo=0&modestbranding=0&html5=1&iv_load_policy=3&autoplay=0&end=0&loop=0&playsinline=0&start=0&nocookie=false&enablejsapi=1&origin=http%3A%2F%2Fcanadianpatriot.org&widgetid=1 00:00 16:37 © 2020 The Canadian Patriot

[Jan 12, 2020] The Politics Behind Banning Russia From the Olympics -- Strategic Culture

Jan 12, 2020 | www.strategic-culture.org

Michael Averko January 11, 2020 © Photo: Government.ru There've been ongoing propaganda pieces that skirt over some inconvenient realities, for those seeking to unfairly admonish Russia in the Olympic movement. One case in point is the January 2 Reuters article " Use 1992 Yugoslavia Precedent for Russians in Tokyo – Historian ". With a stated " some Russians ", that article suggestively under-represents the actual number of 2018 Russian Winter Olympians at Pyeongchang, while supporting a hypocritically flawed aspect, having to do with Yugoslavia in 1992.

The downplaying of Russian participation at Pyeongchang, is seemingly done to spin the image of many Russian cheats being kept out. At the suggestion of the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA), the International Olympic Committee (IOC) closely vetted Russians for competition at the 2018 Winter Olympics. In actuality, the 2018 Russian Winter Olympic participation wasn't so off the mark, when compared to past Winter Olympiads – something which (among other things) puts a dent into the faulty notion that Russia should be especially singled out for sports doping.

At the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics, Russia had its largest ever Winter Olympic contingent of 232 , on account of the host nation being allowed a greater number of participants. The 168 Russian Winter Olympians at Pyeongchang is 9 less than the Russians who competed at the 2010 Winter Olympics. Going back further, Russian Winter Olympic participation in 2006 was at 190 , with its 2002 contingent at 151 , 1998 having 122 and 1994 (Russia's first formal Winter Olympic appearance as Russia) 113 .

The aforementioned Reuters piece references a " historian ", Bill Mallon, who is keen on using the 1992 Summer Olympic banning of Yugoslavia (then consisting of Serbia and Montenegro) as a legitimate basis to ban Russia from the upcoming Summer Olympics. In this instance, Alan Dershowitz's periodic reference to the " if the shoe is on the other foot " test is quite applicable . Regarding Mallon, " historian " is put in quotes because his historically premised advocacy is very much incomplete and overly propagandistic.

For consistency sake and contrary to Mallon, Yugoslavia should've formally participated at the 1992 Summer Olympics. The Olympic banning of Yugoslavia was bogus, given that the IOC and the IOC affiliated sports federations didn't ban the US and USSR for their respective role in wars, which caused a greater number of deaths than what happened in 1990s Bosnia. The Reuters article at issue references a United Nations resolution for sanctions against Yugoslavia, without any second guessing, in support of the preference (at least by some) to keep politics out of sports as much as possible.

Mallon casually notes that Yugoslav team sports were banned from the 1992 Summer Olympics, unlike individual Yugoslav athletes, who participated as independents. At least two of the banned Yugoslav teams were predicted to be lead medal contenders.

Croatia was allowed to compete at the 1992 Summer Olympics, despite that nation's military involvement in the Bosnian Civil War. During the 1992 Summer and Winter Olympics, the former USSR participated in individual and team sports as the Unified Team (with the exception of the three former Soviet Baltic republics, who competed under their respective nation). With all this in mind, the ban on team sports from Yugoslavia at the 1992 Summer Olympics, under a neutral name, appears to be hypocritical and ethically challenged.

BS aside, the reality is that geopolitical clout (in the form of might making right), is what compels the banning of Yugoslavia, unlike superpowers engaged in behavior which isn't less egregious. Although a major world power, contemporary Russia lacks the overall geopolitical influence of the USSR. Historian Stephen Cohen and some others, have noted that post-Soviet Russia doesn't get the same (for lack of a better word) respect accorded to the USSR. This aspect underscores how becoming freer, less militaristic and more market oriented doesn't (by default) bring added goodwill from a good number of Western establishment politicos and the organizations which are greatly influenced by them.

On the subject of banning Russia from the Olympics, Canadian sports legal politico Dick Pound, continues to rehash an inaccurate likening with no critical follow-up. ( An exception being yours truly .) Between 2016 and 2019 , Pound references the Olympic banning of South Africa, as a basis for excluding Russia. South Africa was banned when it had apartheid policies, which prevented that country's Black majority from competing in organized sports. Russia has a vast multiethnic participation in sports and other sectors.

As previously noted , the factual premise to formally ban Russia from the Olympics remains suspect. The Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) is set to review Russia's appeal to have the recommended WADA ban against Russia overturned, as Western mass media at large and sports politicos like Pound continue to push for a CAS decision against Russia.

[Jan 12, 2020] Nobody, not even Russia and china, can afford to stay in the sidelines in a nuclear war in the 2020s.

Notable quotes:
"... What i find truly amazing is that American Zionists still believe crushing Iran is easy enough. Israel, with 8 million jews stuffed in a small country, is nothing more than a carrier battle group marooned on land ..."
Jan 12, 2020 | smoothiex12.blogspot.com

Axiosromano 2 days ago

The tramp & nutNyahoo machismo show continues to be fun to watch. Both show off their penis worms as they arrogantly claim they can crush iran. Both the usa and israel keep banging on the doors and walls of their pissed-off neighbors' houses. That eventually gets you murdered whether in baltimore or baghdad.

A crushable iran is true if and only if they can mount a full-on nuclear war on Iran. But such horrendous cheating means all bets are off, and iran's allies will provide the nukes required to melt down the American homeland too. Nobody, not even Russia and china, can afford to stay in the sidelines in a nuclear war in the 2020s.

What i find truly amazing is that American Zionists still believe crushing Iran is easy enough. Israel, with 8 million jews stuffed in a small country, is nothing more than a carrier battle group marooned on land. Sitting ducks, with nice armor, nukes and all, are ... still sitting ducks. nutNyahoo should ask his technical crew just how few megatons are needed, or just a few thousand modern missiles are required to transform sitting ducks into nicely roasted peking ducks.

So a conventional war it is. The usa and israel has exactly zero, zilch and nada chances of winning a war with iran. The usa keeps forgetting that it is a dying empire with dying funding value and mental resources. Just like israel which oddly thinks dozens of f-35s will give it immunity through air superiority. Proof of this fact that iran will win comes from simply asking american and israeli war experts to go on cnn or the washington post on how they intend to win a war with iran.

Im sure these expert bloviators will say that it is as easy as winning a naval war against china, which is capable of launching only 3 new warships in a week. Or an even easier time against russia, which can launch only a few thousand hypersonic nuke missiles because its GDP is no bigger than that of texas.

Rob Naardin 2 days ago

The Pentagon is super slow to adapt and learn. If you understand that bureaucracy is an ancient organizational structure and that the organizational culture of the Pentagon is pathologically dysfunctional you could have predicted the moral and financial bankruptcy of America 15-20 years ago. The "Why?", finally made sense when I discovered what a sociopath was.

It's about time the US practices what it preachs and start behaving like a normal country instead of a spoiled narcissistic brat. see more

tic_Fox Rob Naardin2 days ago • edited

US military & strategic thought became lazy during the late days of the Cold War. It mirrored the decline & fall of the foundations of its opponent, USSR. Post-Cold War, US military & strategic thinking flushed into the sewer. It was all about maintaining the military as some sort of a social policy jobs program, operating legacy tech as the mission. And then came the "world-improvers" -- beginning w the Clinton Admin -- who worked to turn the world into a global "urban renewal" project; meaning to mirror the success US Big Govt showed in the slums of American cities from sea to sea. The past 30 yrs of US strategic thinking and related governance truly disgusts me. see more

Vasya Pypkin Arctic_Fox2 days ago

Soviet union fall had very different reasons and Soviet military thought was doing quite well then along with military. Current russian military wonders is completion of what was started then and not finished earlier because of the disintegration of the Soviet state.
The soviet fall however is extremely regrettable because there was a new way how things can be done that Soviet union was showing to the world. USA fall long term is a very good thing because USA is a paragon of how things should be done the old way and basically a huge parasite. Many negative trends that are afflicting the world were started by USA. Unlimited individualism and consumerism would be a couple of those. see more

Drapetomania Vasya Pypkin17 hours ago
Why does almost every person on Earth feel the need to force others to bend the knee to their beliefs?

Religious beliefs are what one thinks should be done to promote survival in an afterlife, political beliefs are what one thinks should be done to promote survival in this world.

The world would be a far better, more civilized, of world if such beliefs were only shared on a voluntary basis.

As for individualism, I would rather be free than live in a modern day egalitarian hunter-gatherer tribe run by modern day psychopathic alpha-males.

That is certainly not a recipe for success. see more

AriusArmenian Arctic_Fox2 days ago

It also mirrors the decline and fall of the Roman Empire. It was Emperor Augustus that decided the costs to further expand the Empire were too great after losing one (or two?) legions against the Germanic tribes.

The US has reached its greatest extent. We are living through it. The US didn't go forward into war with Iran twice. The odds of humanity surviving this immense turn of history is looking better. see more

Vasya Pypkin AriusArmenian2 days ago • edited

Frankly, nothing in common. I read this comparison all the time. Yes, Augustus decided not to continue along with expansion into Germany after losing 3 Varus legions due to ambush.

But he famously noted that it does not worth to go fishing with golden hook. Basically speaking, Germany was not worth fighting for. Poor and remote it had nothing to offer. Just a drain on resources. As long as conquest was moving smoothly it was ok, but after losses were inflicted Augustus decided it was not worth it.

Roman expansion under augustus was carried mostly to consolidate previous conquests and create strategical debth along core and strategical provinces also creating linkage.

When enemy far stronger than germans posed resources which made the whole conquest worthy no amount of resistance saved Dacians and Parthia also almost died under Trajan attack.

Roman policies were adequate and wise. Treaties were respected, allies supported and benefited. Empire was build around Mediterranean creating good communication and routes considering obviously limits of that day technology.

Rome did not behave like crazy and did not deliver threats that she could not follow through. When war was decided upon thorough preparations were taken. Political goals were achieved. Wars were won. When Adrian considered that empire was overextended in Parthis, he simply abandoned all conquered territories. Just like that.

Logical calm thinking USA,is not capable of. Rome truly based upon superior military and diplomacy dominance lasted many centuries. USA few decades. One hit wonder, lucky fool I would call it. see more

Arctic_Fox Vasya Pypkin17 hours ago

Interesting account of Roman strategic concept of forward presence, versus administering the internal lines of communication... see more

WHAT2 days ago

They left equipment in the open on that base and ran away. No AA fire whatsoever. This is how much they are ready to take a punch. see more

smoothieX12 . Mod WHAT2 days ago

Yes, this is somewhat puzzling. As I said, let's wait and see where it all develops to, but as Twisted Genius succinctly observed -- Iran now controls tempo because she has conventional superiority. Anyone who has precision-guided, stand off weaponry in good numbers will be on top. see more

Arctic_Fox smoothieX12 .2 days ago

The old submarine saying is, "There are two kinds of ships; submarines, and targets."
.
The new version for land ops is, "There are two kinds of land-based military assets; precision-guided missiles, and targets." (And per the photos, those Iranian missiles were quite precise; bulls-eyes.)
.
Iran and its missiles demonstrated that the entire strategic foundation for US mil presence in the Middle East is now obsolete. Everything the US would ever want to do there is now subject to Iran's version of "steel rain." Every runway, hangar, aircraft parking area; every supply depot or warehouse; every loading pier, fuel site, naval pier. Everything... is a target. And really... there's no amount of US "airpower" and "tech" than can mitigate the Iran missile threat.
.
Meanwhile, related thinking... Iran's true strategic interest is NOT fighting a near-term war w/ USA. Iran wants US to exit Middle East; and Iran wants to be able to pursue its nuclear program. Soleimani or no, Iran appears to have its eyeballs fixed on the long-term goals. see more

smoothieX12 . Mod Arctic_Fox2 days ago • edited
The new version for land ops is, "There are two kinds of land-based military assets; precision-guided missiles, and targets."

Exactly, and Iran has long-range TLAMs in who knows what numbers, That, in its turn, brings about the next issue of range for Iranian indigenous anti-ship missiles. Not, of course, to mention the fact of only select people knowing if Russia transferred P-800 Onyx to Iran She certainly did it for Syria. If that weapon is there--the Persian Gulf and Hormuz Strait will be shut completely closed and will push out CBGs far into the Indian Ocean. see more

Vasya Pypkin smoothieX12 .a day ago

It is simply pathetic after decades of talking non stop about developments of anti missiles and huge amounts wasted and nobody is responsible. This is the way capitalism works.profits is everything and outcomes secondary. Thankfully russia has got soviet foundation and things so far are working well. I come to think that in our times no serious industrial processes should be allowed to stay in private hands. Only services and so.e other simpler stuff under heavy state control to ensure quality. Otherwise profit orientation will eventually destroy everything like with Boeing.

Drapetomania Vasya Pypkin16 hours ago observerBG smoothieX12 .2 days ago • edited

I know, i already wrote a full scale war scenario in one of the comments. Iran can destroy all US bases in 2000 km range. But this does not mean that it can not be bombed back to the stone age, if the US really wishes so. The problem for the US is the high cost as well as the high debt levels, but it does have the technical capability to do that after 2 - 3 years of bombing.

Also low yield tactical nukes are designed to lower the treshold of the use of nukes in otherwise conventional war, producing less international outrage than the megaton city buster bombs. Why do you think the US is developing them again? Because they would want to use them in conventional conflicts.

Here btw is Yurasumy, he also says that the US can technically bomb Iran back to the stone age, but the cost will be too high.

Play Hide

https://cdn.embedly.com/

smoothieX12 . Mod observerBG2 days ago • edited
if the US really wishes so.

Again--what's the plan and what's the price? Iran HAS Russia's ISR on her side in case of such SEAD.

Does the United States want to risk lives of thousands of its personnel (not to speak of expensive equipment) in Qatar, KSA, Iraq. Does Israel want to "get it"?

There are numbers which describe such an operation (it was. most likely, already planned as contingency). Immediate question: when was the last time USAF operated in REAL dense ECM and ECCM environment? I do not count some brushes with minimal EW in Syria.

Russia there uses only minimally required option, for now. Iran has a truck load EW systems, including some funny Russian toys which allowed Iran to take control of US UAVs, as an example. As I say, this is not Iraq and by a gigantic margin. see more

observerBG smoothieX12 .2 days ago • edited

I already said that debt levels do not allow it and the price would be too high, but yes, the US does have the military capability to destroy Iran. By conventional means. It is another question that it is not in good fiscal shape. Anyway, US ballistic missiles (non nuclear armed) will be hard to stop by EW. Even if Iran gets rid of 50 % of incoming TLAMs, the US will keep sending more and more until most infrastructure, bridges, oil refineries, power plants, factories, ports etc. are destroyed. This is why i said it would take 2 - 3 years. see more

smoothieX12 . Mod observerBG2 days ago
but yes, the US does have the military capability to destroy Iran. By conventional means

That is the whole point: NO, it doesn't. Unless US goes into full mobilization mode and addresses ALL (plus a million more not listed) requirements for such a war which I listed in the post. Well, that or nukes. see more

observerBG smoothieX12 .2 days ago

Yurasumy is a pretty good analist and he thinks that they can. I do not see it for the US being too hard to produce more TLAMS, ICBMs and IRBMs (conventional) to sustain the effort for 2 years, by that time most iranian infrastructure will be destroyed. If the fiscal situation allowes it. see more

smoothieX12 . Mod observerBG2 days ago

I don't know who Yarasumy is and what is his background, but unlike him I actually write books, including on modern warfare. This is not to show off, but I am sure I can make basic calculations. This is not to mention the fact that even Sivkov agrees with my points and Sivkov, unlike Yarsumy, graduated Popov's VVMURE, served at subs, then graduated Kuznetsov Academy, then Academy of the General Staff and served in Main Operational Directorate (GOU) until retiring in the rank of Captain 1st Rank from the billet of Combat Planning group. So, I would rather stick to my opinion. see more

observerBG smoothieX12 .2 days ago

Why do you think that the US can not destroy Iran with IRBMs? Actually this is their strategy vs China. If they think its viable vs China, then it should be viable vs Iran too. see more

smoothieX12 . Mod observerBG2 days ago • edited

Because unlike the US, Russia's Air Defenses have a rather very impressive history of shifting the balance in wars in favor of those who have them, when used properly. But then I can quote for you a high ranking intelligence officer:

A friend of mine who has expertise in these matters wrote me:

Any air defense engineer with a securityclearance that isn't lying through his teeth will admit that Russia'sair defense technology surpassed us in the 1950's and we've never been able to catch up. The systems thy have in place surrounding Moscow make our Patriot 3's look like fucking nerf guns.

Read the whole thing here:

https://turcopolier.typepad...

Mathematics is NOT there for the United States for a real combined operations war of scale with Iran. Unless US political class really wants to see people with pitch-forks. see more

Arctic_Fox smoothieX12 .17 hours ago

"Mathematics is not there..."
.
Neither is the industrial base, including supply lines. Not the mines, mills, factories to produce any significant levels of warfighting materiel such as we're talking about here. Not the workforce, either. Meanwhile, where are the basic designs for these weps? The years of lab work, bench tests, pilot specimens & prototypes, the development pipeline? The contractors to build them? the Tier 2, 3, 4 suppliers? Where are the universities that train such people as are needed? Where is the political will? Where is the government coordination? Where is the money? Indeed, every Democrat and probably half the Republicans who run for office campaign on controlling military spending; not that USA gets all that much benefit from the current $800 billion per year. see more

observerBG smoothieX12 .2 days ago • edited

That would require S-500 - ballistic missile defense. Maybe 15 - 20 S-500 in Iran will be needed. And it is not yet in the army. see more

smoothieX12 . Mod observerBG2 days ago

You see, here is the difference--I can calculate approximate required force for that but I don't want to. It is Friday. You can get some basic intro into operational theory (and even into Salvo Equations) in my latest book. Granted, my publisher fought me tooth and nail to remove as much match as possible. But I'll give you a hint--appearance of S-500 on any theater of operations effectively closes it off effectively for any missile or aircraft operations when deployed in echeloned (multi-layer) AD. see more

[Jan 11, 2020] New category of Russian agents: The level of fake information in coverage of neoliberal MSM of Iranian event force people to read Sputnik and Xinhua

Notable quotes:
"... It's as if the entire capital city of the US has become a mental asylum / Hotel California ..."
Jan 11, 2020 | www.moonofalabama.org

Jen , Jan 10 2020 19:30 utc | 1

The sheer arrogance and wilful blindness expressed in the US State Department press statement and WaPo staffer Louisa Loveluck's tweets are astounding beyond belief. It's as if the entire capital city of the US has become a mental asylum / Hotel California , where one can enter but never leave spiritually and morally, though one can take many physical trips in and out of the madhouse.

Iraq definitely does need the S-300 missile defense systems. The most pressing issue though is whether the Iraqis will suffer the delays Syria suffered in acquiring those systems even after paying for them.

Time now is of the essence. Iraqi operators need to be trained in those systems. Syria may be able to supply some training but at the risk of letting down its guard in sending some of its operators to Baghdad and exposing them to US drone attacks.

[Jan 10, 2020] The level of disinformation produced by fake news outliets controlled by intelligence agencies is just staggering. You cna't beleve a single work in politically changed fortin covergarate

They really are able to turn white into black and black into white.
Notable quotes:
"... 1) Occurs as Iran is on brink of war with USA?; 2) Indications of USA using info war tactics; 3) airliner owner by Kolomoisky? 4) No communication with tower? 5) USA and Israel history of duplicity and narrative management (example: MH-17). ..."
"... NATO has weaponized aircraft accident investigations. Lawfare in combination with state terrorism. ..."
"... The Ukies know how to obliterate a debris field. MH-17 -- They used artillery for months to keep OSCE and Dutch officials away, and despite the locals working to protect the deceased and the debris, body parts have been found years later. ..."
Jan 10, 2020 | www.moonofalabama.org
Rob , Jan 10 2020 17:46 utc | 2
There were also clear sightings of a missile to bring down TWA 800. Except it didn't. As an Navy Pilot , flight instructor and 737 captain this does not at 1st or 2nd glance appear to be a missile strike. Catastropic engine failure is my bet. They made most of the turn back to the airport before losing integrity or loss of thrust.

Good analysis.


vk , Jan 10 2020 17:52 utc | 3

US Claim of Ukrainian Boeing 737 Plane Being Hit by Missile Aims to Manipulate Stock Markets
On Wednesday, Boeing's shares plummeted by 2.3 percent ($3.4bn) after the Ukrainian Boeing 737-800 aircraft crashed in Tehran due to encountering a technical glitch.

On Thursday, the stock rose by 3 percent after unnamed Pentagon officials claimed that the Ukrainian passenger plane was most likely brought down by anti-aircraft missiles, and US President Donald Trump implicitly supported the claim. This has been read by analysists as an attempt to manipulate the stock market; a measure that would both overshadow Trump's failure in Iraq and save Boeing from bankruptcy.

Russia says no grounds to blame Iran for Ukrainian plane crash: TASS

I didn't find the article on TASS. Maybe it was in its Russian version, or in its TV/Radio/Podcast version.

I don't discard a terrorist attack from the inside, or sabotage of the plane by the Ukrainian government. What I think is missile attack can be pretty much discarded: the evidence the Iranians already have through their air control data discard any possibility, by sheer logic alone, that that was the case.

Unless, of course, the Iranians are lying. But then there isn't any cui bono for Iran to lie about it (if it was a mistake they wanted to cover, they could blame a random independent militia so as to give plausible deniability) with the technical malfunction argument, and now Russia's foreign minister Ryabkov is on the boat with it - so I don't see the cui bono for Russia either.

ninel , Jan 10 2020 17:58 utc | 4
A little guide to Iran's modern history.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1988_executions_of_Iranian_political_prisoners
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chain_murders_of_Iran
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Iran_student_protests,_July_1999
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zahra_Kazemi
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_foreign_nationals_detained_in_Iran
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Corruption_in_Iran
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Censorship_in_Iran

Perseus wore a magic cap so that the monsters he hunted down might not see him. Some of you choose to draw the magic cap down over your eyes and ears so as to make-believe that there are no monsters in Iran.

Per/Norway , Jan 10 2020 18:03 utc | 5
Posted by: ninel | Jan 10 2020 17:58 utc | 4

"Some of you choose to draw the magic cap down over your eyes and ears so as to make-believe that there are no monsters in Iran."

No, it is a lot easier than that.

Most of us dont get paid to post bs about the imperial enemies like you, and most off us still know how to use our brain.
That is it, nothing more nothing less.

PavewayIV , Jan 10 2020 18:10 utc | 6
Rob@2 - What do you make of the loss of ADS-B? Could a catastrophic engine failure take out both power buses? The ADS-B transceiver? I know a the turbine blades turn into little missile blades when they decide to leave the engine, but I have no idea of the way power is transferred when either bus or the standby goes down. I assume automatic? Are the transfer switches anywhere near the engines? Does the APU automatically fire up? I assume the ADS-B box is in the electronics bay, but where is the antenna?

karlof1 , Jan 10 2020 18:37 utc | 12
Thanks b! As I commented towards the end of the previous thread on this topic, the mundane evidence has already been shown. IMO, if a missile or bomb was employed, the Iranians would be yelling louder than anyone and the denials would be coming from BigLie Media instead of accusations. And as I answered psychohistorian, the massive coverage by BigLie media serves as narrative distraction from what's being obfuscated--casualties taken by Outlaw US Empire troops and the BDA presented by Iranian Military.

In that regard, The Saker's update sticks to the important facts of the now escalated ongoing war between Iran and the Evil Empire.


Jackrabbit , Jan 10 2020 19:11 utc | 17
Sorry, but there's good reasons to suspect foul play - as I and others have explained on the last thread.

1) Occurs as Iran is on brink of war with USA?; 2) Indications of USA using info war tactics; 3) airliner owner by Kolomoisky? 4) No communication with tower? 5) USA and Israel history of duplicity and narrative management (example: MH-17).

<> <> <> <>

Also: IMO it's dangerous for Iran to invite experts from a group of Western countries. What is likely to happen is that all the Western experts will be pressure to disagree with Iran's findings. CIA knows that people will believe the "group of experts!" over Iran.

!!

pleasebeleafme , Jan 10 2020 19:12 utc | 18
I don't know how anal Iran is about keeping track of ordinance but they must be pretty certain as to whether they downed the plane or not! Looks like they are being transparent and open. If they come out of this proving engine failure or something else then this could be a great pr coup.
There would be a lot of egg on many faces trying to explain how the intelligence is wrong yet again. I look forward to watching trudeau walk that back. Hopefully!
Gary , Jan 10 2020 19:17 utc | 19
One explanation is the Boeing was used as a human shield, a military plane hides behind a slow moving plane when detected. The ukrainians did it with the MH17 and the israeli with the russian plane and tried it with the attack on damascus. In both cases there was a lot of dis-info and blaming right away. But the iranian would have known what the target was, and mentioned it, so very unlikely.

Another question is the possibility a smaller missile only damaged the plane, also very unlikely.

Head of Iran Civil Aviation Organization Ali Abedzadeh exaggerates: "From a scientific viewpoint, it is impossible that a missile hit the Ukrainian plane."

"We can say that the airplane, considering the kind of the crash and the pilot's efforts to return it to Imam Khomeini airport, didn't explode in the air. So, the allegation that it was hit by missiles is totally ruled out," the official noted.

Walter , Jan 10 2020 19:25 utc | 20
Dude, when you're in Wyoming and see critter tracks down by the creek, you would assume it was Martians rather than antelope? Get real. The Ukie blew a crappy GE engine...they have this characteristic...

Stay real, use Occam's Razor + physical evidence. Otherwise it's distraction and TBS...

TJ , Jan 10 2020 19:26 utc | 21
@11 Ernesto Che

Craig Murray has been tracking a propagandist Wikipedia editor called "Philip Cross", here is the main article, but there are others on his site The Philip Cross Affair

karlitozulu , Jan 10 2020 19:38 utc | 24
ninel@ #4

here is a little reminder of Murica's recent history:

From 1945 until today - 20 to 30 million people killed by the USA

https://www.voltairenet.org/article204021.html

so, when you talk about monsters are you talking about yourself? ;)

Piotr , Jan 10 2020 19:39 utc | 25
ICAO is in contact with the States involved and will assist them if called upon. Its leadership is stressing the importance of avoiding speculation into the cause of the tragedy pending the outcomes of the investigation ...

ICAO may be a worthy organization (some staff changes seem to be warranted), but isn't it a bit too much?! If this is a sincere wish of democratically elected heads of democratic nations that they want to form a harmonious chorus and speculate, then no mundane power can stop them. BTW, what is wrong with Zelensky that he did not join? PTSD after the brutal telephonies calls? I would add it to the list of proven damages to the security of those several states that will be debated in the Senate. [end of snark, "several states" is the entity named in the so-called Constitution of The United States of America].

journey80 , Jan 10 2020 19:50 utc | 26
The flight originated in Teheran, bound for Kiev, but where was it before it arrived in Iran? It could have been sabotaged anywhere; then easy, right, to set off an onboard bomb by remote control from the ground? I'm sure Iran is crawling with Mosssad/MI6/CIA spooks.
ninel , Jan 10 2020 19:51 utc | 27
@karlitozulu

So you turn a blind eye to atrocities committed by other countries or peoples because the US government is responsible for the most? Did you even complete your high school education with that sort of reasoning? I never absolved the US or any other country. Simpletons like you seem to live in a black and white world in which one side must be chosen over the other. I feel unfortunate for b or anyone else who frequents this blog who does not view the world in such a profoundly problematic way.

I am far more informed about Iranian politics, history, culture and religion than most people here. Please don't allow your hate for the USA, well justified, to cloud your judgment.

Symen Danziger , Jan 10 2020 19:53 utc | 28
NATO has weaponized aircraft accident investigations. Lawfare in combination with state terrorism.

It's time for new rules and regulations. ICAO Annex 13 was drafted in different times. A rule based order is ancient history.

People should be able to chose their destination, route and carrier based on personal preferences like price and comfort, not on factors like the latest or next conflict zone, corruption in the countries along the route, military and political adventurism, etc.

The world has gone crazy.

Willy2 , Jan 10 2020 20:01 utc | 33
- As said before: I didn't believe for one second that that ukrainian plane was shot down. It would have given the US simply another stick to beat up the iranian government. I assume the iranians are smart enough to know that. They simply don't want to escalate the situation more. Although Iran has now the "moral high ground" it is still (very) vulnerable in a number of ways.

- I think the ukrainian tourists were small traders. I.e. buy stuff e.g. clothing and other "merchandise" in Teheran, bring it into the Ukraine and then sell that "merchandise" in Ukraine with a (big) profit.

William Gruff , Jan 10 2020 20:05 utc | 35
We have a distinguished professor in our midst! Quite unlike the lowly regular professors or inconsequential adjunct instructors that normally grace these pages. Let me kick back and get a tan from the brilliance pouring out of this one! Us high latitude types have to get our Vitamin D wherever we can.

As for my lack of criticism of Iran's government, that's the business of the Iranian people and none of my own. The Evil Empire attacking Iran? That, unfortunately, is everyone's business whether they want it to be or not.

Why is it that these wise guys from the West (Americans mostly) feel it is their duty to criticize everyone else's governments and cultures when the examples they are setting themselves are so appallingly bad? Maybe these distinguished critics of other peoples' ways of life feel that it is easier to fix those other peoples' societies than it is to fix their own. After all, they apparently feel that fixing other countries just requires some number of bombs, while fixing their own country... where do they even start? How do you fix perfection?

Jen , Jan 10 2020 20:06 utc | 36
I'd be curious to know whether the flight crew on board Flight PS752 had had sufficient rest. Three hours of resting do not seem like sufficient time but that depends on the journey the plane made to Tehran, the duration of that journey and where it started. Was the plane also checked for signs of wear and tear during the three-hour-plus pause?

Are UIA's owners (among them Ihor Kolomoisky) working their employees and hardware assets too hard and too cheaply as well?

Walter , Jan 10 2020 20:33 utc | 43
@ Rob | Jan 10 2020 17:46 utc | 2

Yes. I think so too. Looks like the engine ran at reduced thrust as they turned, and then failed entirely at below minimum control speed, with the expected result, asymmetrical stall, yaw, roll, bang.

There are pictures of severe erosion of what looks like compressor wheel from, presumably, ingestion of foreign material. Crap on the runway probably, and pencil-whipped maintenance, I should imagine.

foolisholdman , Jan 10 2020 20:36 utc | 44
bevin | Jan 10 2020 18:52 utc | 15

Reuters was bought by Rothschild some years ago.

PavewayIV , Jan 10 2020 21:01 utc | 49
journey80@26 - Kiev is Ukrainian Airlines main hub. The 737 arrived from Kiev earlier that morning and was returning there.

Jen@36 - No reason to do anything but a cursory safety check at Tehran. The airline's mechanics are in Kiev - anything beyond a normal pre-flight check involving maintenance would be done there, not Tehran. I doubt the crew was rested. That's not how UAI rolls on it's hub round-trips.

UAI is also bleeding money like crazy. They're nearly bankrupt and stole the money they collect from passengers for the Ukraine Civil Aviation Authority fees. Tens of millions USD. The new CEO promises to fix everything somehow. I guess by overworking crews, skipping maintenance and crappy service. Those are always money-savers for cheap, poorly-run airlines (prior to bankruptcy). Too bad. Supposedly it wasn't that bad of an airline when they first added passenger service to their existing cargo ops a decade ago, but has been going downhill ever since.

"Some real gems you got following your blog b."
So why are you here?

Peter AU1 , Jan 10 2020 21:39 utc | 56
Ocams razor... bookies odds... planes fall out o the sky from time to time for all sorts of reasons not related to malicious activity. What are the odds of this occurring in Iran shortly after an Iran strike on a US base.

The US has and does use terrorist tactics such as shooting down passenger jets. Trump threatened Iran with retribution against cultural sites and so forth (terrorist actions). Fifty two targets of fifty two ways of getting back at Iran.

What are the odds US would down a passenger jet in Iran within hours of Iran's strike against their base.

I have to go with US terrorist actions for that one. Similar to the protests in Iraq. The people had genuine grievances as do all good color revolutions but the were just too advantageous for the US for it not to be a made in the US color revolution style protest. We now know from the Iraq PM that is exactly what it was.

Walter , Jan 10 2020 22:05 utc | 58
The odds are unrelated unless there's agency. No agency has been credibly proposed. You know this is so, as the probability maths in se have been discussed previously @ MoA.

But of course, the US does murder all over the place, so if there is agency, then I tend to agree with the idea that "they" or their cohort in zionishland may be causative. What are the "odds" that the engine shown has severe blade erosion? Again 100% . Engine swallows scrap off the tarmac...a dependent relation, drop junk in engine, blades damaged, run at 100%, 100% "chance" of engine failure.

Repeating the essence of the matter of odds>

"Two events are independent, statistically independent, or stochastically independent if the occurrence of one does not affect the probability of occurrence of the other (equivalently, does not affect the odds). Similarly, two random variables are independent if the realization of one does not affect the probability distribution of the other."

ie without a dependent relationship the odds are whatever the odds are for engine failure and crash. And the other odds don't exist, because those events, the shooting, was not random or accidental. The odds of Iran firing rockets in reprisal was dependent on the US attacks, ie 100%

But if you're building engines at GE, or obsolete defective airplanes in Seattle, then of course the odds are that you devoutly wish it was a rocket up the tailpipe... Pay-day's come Friday, and all of that...

dave , Jan 10 2020 22:29 utc | 59
@PavewayIV

The APU will auto-shutdown for the following reasons:

Fire
Low oil pressure
High oil temperature / Fault
Overspeed

http://www.b737.org.uk/apu.htm

t , Jan 10 2020 22:38 utc | 62
Would like to see debunk the NYT video: https://www.nytimes.com/2020/01/09/video/iran-plane-missile.html

Have checked it myself (google earth etc) after being skeptical and the landmarks and sounds do indeed seem to match.

Bigben , Jan 10 2020 22:51 utc | 66
This link is worth reading. I can't play the video on my computer, but we will see if this theory gains traction during the next few days.

https://www.veteranstoday.com/2020/01/10/video-of-ukrainian-airliner-in-failed-landing-with-burning-engine-makes-trump-a-chump/

t , Jan 10 2020 23:02 utc | 69
@Poor,

I know NYT is a sham, and believe me I held my intellectual nose as I went into its site. It's not somewhere I frequent at all.

I did think about the point you made too, but there are 2 issues:

1) In the other 2 videos we see the plane as it's already burning, we don't see it in its "before" state. For me it's reasonable to imagine the hit on the impact caused some initial burning which was extinguished due to wind, and then started back up again a few moments after the NYT video ended and before the other 2 videos began.

2) If the NYT video is indeed doctored (and for me it would be a pretty convincing doctor), why wouldn't the creator simply keep the light going until the end of the vid?

Likklemore , Jan 10 2020 23:39 utc | 74
Iran to Announce Cause of Ukraine Jet Crash Tomorrow - Reports
Iran will announce the cause of the Ukrainian Boeing 737 crash after the accident investigation commission meeting on Saturday, the Fars News agency reported on Thursday, citing a source familiar with the matter.

"Tomorrow, after the meeting of the civil aviation accident investigation commission, the cause of the crash of the Ukrainian passenger plane will be announced", the source said.

Domestic and foreign parties, whose citizens died in the crash, will take part in the Saturday meeting, the outlet added. They will announce the reason for the accident after reviewing the preliminary report.

Ukraine says Iran cooperating with Boeing crash probe, calls to reduce media speculation

[.]Foreign Minister Vadym Prystaiko asked that the media not spread "unconfirmed" information on Friday, pleading with reporters to "reduce the level of speculation" while the probe continues. The experts are still analyzing evidence, looking at the bodies of the victims and the wreckage in hope of gaining insight into what took down Ukraine International Airlines Flight PS752, killing all 176 people on board.[,]
A User , Jan 11 2020 1:27 utc | 78
If no one had engaged with nine-drongos the thread would not have been disrupted and perhaps a useful dialog about the plane crash could have ensued. Those who did swallow the hook are just as guilty the original whatabouter of making this thread useless - good job. I would say exercise some discipline but that would be a waste of breath given the insecurities about their beliefs too many here apparently have. Letting some arsehole spout uninterrupted is a better indication of your point of view than anger, hysteria or ad hominem. Your stupidity has caused a thread to fail.
Red Ryder , Jan 11 2020 1:34 utc | 82
The Ukies know how to obliterate a debris field. MH-17 -- They used artillery for months to keep OSCE and Dutch officials away, and despite the locals working to protect the deceased and the debris, body parts have been found years later.

Patience, folks. The truth will come out.

Tom , Jan 11 2020 2:03 utc | 83
#57 posted by Poor Ramin Mazaheri who works for Press TV and has had many articles published on The Saker. He would describe the Iranian economy as socialist with Iranian charters. The link to the article below is an excellent source for information on Iran's economy.

What comes as a surprise to me is ICAO seems to have some integrity. It seems the US and friends haven't completely taken it over.

You can judge someone by their friends. NATO and the terrorists in Idlib have backed the killing of Soleimani. Who seems to enjoy killing civilians? The US just droned killed 60 civilians in Afghanistan. Information provided by the Iraqi prime minister showed the US is willing to use snipers and paid protesters to tear Iraq apart. They utterly destroyed Mosul and Raqqa without regard for civilians. The Syrian government has tried to avoid civilian deaths, which is why those who want to cause chaos in the region always accuses them of targeting civilians. So the US would have no problem getting MEK to or some other group to shoot the plane down but I'm leaning against that scenario.

The US has been planning to control oil for a long time. In 1975 a feasibility study was prepared for the Special Subcommittee on Investigations of the Committee on International Relations on "Oil fields as military objectives", better described as bringing Democracy to the Middle East. Well, they did that sorta in Iraq, and now the Iraq government has politely asked the US to leave and the Iranians have demonstrated to them why they should leave. I'm not sure if the Ukrainian plane crashing is the next move the US has made in this great game, but I would put my money on shoddy management of the Ukrainian plane. Why not, the country is barely functioning. I doubt the plane was hit with a missle. More likely the US can't pass up an opportunity for stirring trouble and the MSM has no problem memory holing another lie.

http://thesaker.is/sanctions-on-khamenei-ending-the-myth-of-the-millionaire-mullah/

[Jan 10, 2020] Paul Craig Roberts The Justice Department Is Devoid Of Justice

Jan 10, 2020 | www.zerohedge.com

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https://www.dianomi.com/smartads.epl?id=4777 Paul Craig Roberts: The Justice Department Is Devoid Of Justice by Tyler Durden Thu, 01/09/2020 - 23:05 0 SHARES

Authored by Paul Craig Roberts,

In the United States the criminal justice (sic) system is itself not subject to law. We see immunity to law continually as police commit felonies against citizens and even murder children and walk away free. We see it all the time when prosecutors conduct political prosecutions and when they prosecute the innocent in order to build their conviction record. We see it when judges fail to prevent prosecutors from withholding exculpatory evidence and bribing witnesses and when judges accept coerced plea deals that deprive the defendant of a jury trial.

We just saw it again when federal prosecutors recommended a six month prison sentence for Lt. Gen. Flynn, the former head of the Defense Intelligence Agency accused of lying to the FBI about nothing of any importance, for being uncooperative in the Justice (sic) Department's effort to frame President Trump with false "Russiagate" charges. The Justice (sic) Department prosecutor said:

"The sentence should adequately deter the defendant from violating the law, and to promote respect for the law. It is clear that the defendant has not learned his lesson. He has behaved as though the law does not apply to him, and as if there are no consequences for his actions."

That is precisely what the Justice (sic) Department itself did for years in their orchestration of the fake Russiagate charges against Trump.

The prosecutor's hypocrisy is overwhelming.

The Justice (sic) Department is a criminal organization. It has no sense of justice. Convicting the innocent builds the conviction rate of the prosecutor as effectively as convicting the guilty. The Horowitz report of the Justice (sic) Department's lies to the FISA court did not recommend a six-month prision sentence for those Justice (sic) Deplartment officials who lied to the government. Horowitz covered up the crimes by converting them into "mistakes." Yes, they are embarrassing "mistakes," but mistakes don't bring prison sentences.

Gen. Flynn, who was President Trump's National Security Advisor for a couple of weeks before Mueller and Flynn's attorneys manuevered him into a plea bargain, allegedly lied to the FBI about whether he met with a Russian. Flynn and his attorneys should never have accepted the proposition that a National Security Advisor shouldn't meet with Russians. Henry Kissinger and Zbigniew Brzezinski met with Russians all the the time. It was part of their job. Trump originally intended to normalize the strained relations with Russia. Flynn should have been meeting with Russians. It was his job.

Ninety-seven percent of felony cases are resolved with plea bargains. In other words, there is no trial. The defendant admits to guilt for a lighter sentence, and if he throws in "cooperation," which generally means giving false evidence against someone else in the prosecutor's net, no sentence at all. Flynn was expected to help frame Trump and Flynn's former business partner, Bijan Rafiekian, on an unrelated matter. He didn't, which means he is "uncooperative" and deserving of a prison sentence.

Plea bargains have replaced trials for three main reasons.

Trials take time and provide a test of often unreliable police and prosecutorial evidence. They mean work for the prosecutor. Even if he secures a conviction, during the same time he could have obtained many more plea bargain convictions. For the judge, trials back up his case docket. Consequently, a trial means for the defendant very high risks of a much longer and more severe sentence than he would get in exchange for saving prosecutor and judge time and energy. All of this is explained to the defendant by his attorney.

It was explained to Gen. Flynn. He agreed to a plea, most likely advised that his "offense" was so minor, no sentence would be forthcoming. Flynn later tried to revoke his plea, saying it was coerced, but the Clinton-appointed judge refused to let him out of the trap.

Now that we know the only Russiagate scandal was its orchestration by the CIA, Justice (sic) Department, and Democrats, failing to cooperate with the special counsel investigation of alleged Russian interference in the 2016 election is nonsensical as we know for a definite fact that there was no such interference.

This is how corrupt American law has become. A man is being put in prison for 6 months for not cooperating with an investigation of an event that did not happen!

If Trump doesn't pardon Flynn (and Manafort and Stone), and fire the corrupt prosecutors who falsely prosecuted Flynn, Trump deserves no one's support.

A president who will not defend his own people from unwarranted prosecution is not worthy of support.

In Flynn's case, we cannot dismiss the suspicion that revenge against Flynn was the driving factor. Gen. Flynn is the official who revealed on television that Obama made the willful decision to send ISIS or whatever we want to call them into Syria. Of course, the Obama regime pretended that the jihadists were moderates seeking to overthrow the alleged dictator Assad and bring democracy to Syria. Washington then pretended that it was fighting the mercenaries it had sent into Syria. Even though the presstitutes did their best to ignore Flynn's information, Flynn gave extreme offense by letting this information out. That bit of truth-telling was Flynn's real offense. Tags Law Crime

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Chemical_Engineer_IT_Analyst , 6 minutes ago link

Then there is the fact that Comey admitted he took advantage of the the situation by catching Flynn off guard without an attorney. This is a warning to everyone: never answer questions by FBI without consulting your attorney first and having him/her present.

[Jan 09, 2020] It looks like UK and the USA intelligences agencies run the contest to see who can come up with the most surreal anti-Russian propaganda psy-ops

Highly recommended!
For MI6 this level of detachment from reality is stunning
Notable quotes:
"... "The UK's Secret Intelligence Service, otherwise known as MI6, has been scrambling to prevent President Trump from publishing classified materials linked to the Russian election meddling investigation. ... much of the espionage performed on the Trump campaign was conducted on UK soil throughout 2016." ..."
"... "Gregory R. Copley, editor and publisher of Defense & Foreign Affairs, posited that Sergei Skripal is the unnamed Russian intelligence source in the Steele dossier. ... In Skripal's pseudo-country-gentleman retirement, the ex-GRU-MI6 double agent was selling custom-made "Russian intelligence"; he had fabricated "material" that went into the Steele dossier..." ..."
Nov 24, 2018 | turcopolier.typepad.com
Likbez,

It looks like UK and USA are engaged in the contest to see who can come up with the most surreal anti-Russian propaganda psy-ops.

British Government Runs Secret Anti-Russian Smear Campaigns

That shed some light on the common origin of MH17, Russiagate and Scripal propaganda campaigns connecting all three with British government's psy-op operation called The ' Integrity Initiative ' which builds 'cluster' or contact groups of trusted journalists, military personal, academics and lobbyists within foreign countries. These people get alerts via social media to take action when the British center perceives a need.

And among others participants, William Browder is listed too:

Members of the Atlantic Council, which has a contract to censor Facebook posts , appear on several cluster lists. The UK core cluster also includes some prominent names like tax fraudster William Browder , the daft Atlantic Council shill Ben Nimmo and the neo-conservative Washington Post columnist Anne Applebaum. One person of interest is Andrew Wood who handed the Steele 'dirty dossier' to Senator John McCain to smear Donald Trump over alleged relations with Russia. A separate subcluster of so-called journalists names Deborah Haynes, David Aaronovitch of the London Times, Neil Buckley from the FT and Jonathan Marcus of the BBC.
Here is one interesting comment from MoA:

Anya, Nov 24, 2018 11:57:00 AM

The British government has been running a serious meddling into the US affairs:

https://www.zerohedge.com/n...

"The UK's Secret Intelligence Service, otherwise known as MI6, has been scrambling to prevent President Trump from publishing classified materials linked to the Russian election meddling investigation. ... much of the espionage performed on the Trump campaign was conducted on UK soil
throughout 2016."
A Steele & Skrupal's anti-Russian / anti-Trump saga: https://spectator.org/big-d...
"Gregory R. Copley, editor and publisher of Defense & Foreign Affairs, posited that Sergei Skripal is the unnamed Russian intelligence source in the Steele dossier. ... In Skripal's pseudo-country-gentleman retirement, the ex-GRU-MI6 double agent was selling custom-made "Russian intelligence"; he had fabricated "material" that went into the Steele dossier..."
For M16 to expose this level of stupidity is stunning.

[Jan 09, 2020] Major General Soleimani's Assassination Isn't Going to Start World War III

Jan 09, 2020 | www.globalresearch.ca

Qasem Soleimani was assassinated on January 2nd, 2020 in Baghdad by a drone strike ordered by Israel-first Trump. The Iranian Commander of the 'Quds Force' was murdered alongside the leader of the Iraqi 'Popular Mobilization Forces', Jamal Jaafar Ibrahimi, aka Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis, in addition to at least 6 other persons.

It was a coward act by a coward President who's no better than a gangbanger on a drive-by shooting targeting unarmed individuals, who in this case were on a diplomatic mission .

Who was General Soleimani?

"It was through his leadership that the IRGC greatly assisted the Syrian Arab Army (SAA) in its destruction of Daesh (ISIS). He's played a larger role than any individual in defeating terrorism in Syria and Iraq, and he was widely respected as among one of the most brilliant unconventional warfare tacticians in recent memory. It was because of his success, however, that he became a most hated foe He was therefore marked for death," wrote Andrew Korybko. By Andrew Korybko Global Research, January 03, 2020 Region: Middle East & North Africa Theme: US NATO War Agenda In-depth Report: IRAN: THE NEXT WAR?

The US carried out a de-facto act of war against Iran after assassinating Major General Qasem Soleimani of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps' Quds Force in Baghdad last night, but despite the doomsday scenarios that many in Alt-Media are speculating that this will lead to, the commencement of World War III is extremely unlikely for several reasons.

***

The "Decapitation Strike" That Shook The World

Trump's approval of the US' assassination of Major General Qasem Soleimani of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps' (IRGC) Quds Force in Baghdad last night amounts to a de-facto act of war against Iran, but it wasn't the decision of a "madman" or someone whose permanent military, intelligence, and diplomatic bureaucracies ("deep state") didn't think this completely through. Rather, it was a premeditated "decapitation strike" carried out to prove the US' conventional "escalation dominance" in its regional proxy war with Iran, one which America surely knows will elicit a kinetic response of some sort from the Islamic Republic but which the Pentagon and its regional allies are prepared for. Contrary to the narrative bandied about in Alt-Media , the US didn't "surrender" the Mideast to Russia and Iran in recent years (who, to be clear, are not "allies", but anti-terrorist "partners of convenience" in Syria) despite some regional setbacks to its grand strategy, but merely adjusted the nature through which it intends to restore its influence there.

Background Context

Instead of continuing to waste hundreds of millions of dollars a day funding the counterproductive 100,000-strong occupation of Iraq and potentially exposing that many troops ("sitting ducks") to retaliatory attacks, it decided to scale down its conventional presence there and replace it with highly trained Marines and special forces that operate with the support of targeted missile strikes. It was one such strike earlier in the week against the Popular Mobilization Units' (PMU) Kataib Hezbollah, which is integrated into the Iraqi Armed Forces, that provoked the group's supporters (allegedly with the coordination of the IRGC according to the US) into besieging the American Embassy in Baghdad. Trump responded by immediately dispatching troops to the world's largest diplomatic facility and bragging on Twitter that this was his " anti-Benghazi " moment in a clear swipe at Obama's notorious failure to protect American diplomats back in 2012 when they were in similar circumstances.

Once the unrest died down following the organizers' decision to withdraw after they declared that their "message has been heard", US Secretary of Defense ominously warned that his country could take "preemptive action" if it detects any signals that Iran is supposedly planning more anti-American attacks in Iraq. The Islamic Republic denied that it played any role in the recent events unfolding in the neighboring country, but the US obviously didn't believe it. It therefore set out to assassinate Maj. Gen. Soleimani in order to send the message that it's serious about "deterring" any forthcoming allegedly Iranian-connected anti-American attacks seeing as how it blamed him for being involved in the latest ones. It also wanted to put additional pressure on Iran to withdraw from Iraq, but probably expected that it could exploit Tehran's response to this de-facto act of war as a pretext for further intensifying its pressure campaign through more "decapitation strikes". This attack therefore dangerously escalated tensions with Iran and made many observers fear the onset of World War III.

Some Words About Maj. Gen. Soleimani

What follows isn't an excuse for America's actions, but simply a cold, hard analysis explaining why Trump decided to assassinate Solemani and thus carry out a de-facto act of war against Iran, one which will not lead to World War III despite the fearmongering speculation that's taken social media by storm ever since. Simply put, Iran misjudged the US' resolve to regain its lost influence in the region and never thought that it would escalate the situation to this level, hence why Maj. Gen. Solemani had no fear of being killed in the heart of Baghdad despite the US' conventional air superiority and explicit warnings that it could take "preemptive action" against Iran if it believes that it played any role whatsoever in any forthcoming anti-American attacks. It doesn't matter whether or not the PMU's Kataib Hezbollah is justified in seeking the removal of US forces from the country through any means possible or if it coordinates those actions with the IRGC since all that's important is that the US was looking for a pretext to carry out its calculated "decapitation strike" against Maj. Gen. Soleimani.

A few words about him are appropriate at this point. It was through his leadership that the IRGC greatly assisted the Syrian Arab Army (SAA) in its destruction of Daesh. He's played a larger role than any individual in defeating terrorism in Syria and Iraq, and he was widely respected as among one of the most brilliant unconventional warfare tacticians in recent memory. It was because of his success, however, that he became one of the US' most hated foes since he contributed to the defeat of Washington's regional proxy forces and thus was partly responsible for the decline in American influence there lately. He was therefore marked for death by the US, but Trump knew that killing him without any pretext would be an unnecessary escalation so he wanted to save that "ace up his sleeve" for later. Iran knows that the US wants it to withdraw from Syria and Iraq but steadfastly refuses because it has the legal right to remain there at the request of those countries' internationally recognized governments, but nevertheless, the US thinks that "might makes right" and is trying to force it out.

The Islamic Republic Won't Commit Suicide

American and "Israeli" strikes against allegedly IRGC-allied PMU forces over the past month or so were intended to achieve that outcome, which naturally prompted those forces to kinetically react by targeting a US base earlier in the week that afterwards served as the pretext for America's latest attack against Kataib Hezbollah which in turn triggered the embassy siege. There's no doubt that the US is escalating the situation in contravention of international law and targeting anti-terrorist forces that contributed to the defeat of Daesh, but polemics -- while having their "perception management" purposes -- are pointless when it comes to analyzing situations as objectively as possible and forecasting what might come next. Therefore, they're being excluded from this piece going forward. Having gotten that out of the way, it's now time to turn the article's attention towards rebutting the fearmongering claims that World War III is about to start after Maj. Gen. Soleimani's assassination.

Iran has the international legal right to defend itself, and its Supreme Leader already vowed a " harsh revenge " to that end, but it's extremely unlikely to take the form of direct attacks against the US or its allies. As much as the next phrase is going to trigger many Alt-Media folks, the US military is capable of destroying Iran in minutes so long as it's willing to bear the regional costs of its actions, both short-term in the sense of casualties and long-term as it relates to the geopolitical future of the Mideast. After proving his commitment to overwhelmingly respond to any anti-American attacks that his government alleges (whether truthfully or not) are carried out with any degree of Iranian coordination, Trump certainly wouldn't hesitate to bomb Iran itself if missiles were launched from there against his or his allies' forces. The Islamic Republic knows that it would literally be suicide to do such a thing, and despite what neoconservatives, Zionists, and Wahhabis claim about the Iranian authorities, they aren't an "apocalyptic death cult" and thus aren't going to start World War III.

Several Scenarios

There's no doubt that Iran could inflict very serious damage to its regional foes if it chooses to "go out with a bang" (whether after being provoked to do so or at its own prerogative), but it's much more likely that its response to Maj. Gen. Soleimani's assassination will take the form of intensified Unconventional Warfare against their interests. The US and its allies must have clearly foreseen this and will likely blame Iran for anything that happens in the coming days no matter whether it's truly involved or not, using that as a pretext for more "decapitation strikes" and other similar measures intended to decimate it and its allies' forces. The nature of conflict between the two sides is therefore asymmetric since the US has conventional dominance whereas Iran has its unconventional counterpart, and both might be put to the test in the event of another US Embassy siege in Baghdad, which is very probable in the coming days seeing as how Iraqi society is seething with rage and can easily assemble a critical mass of protesters to besiege the compound once again.

For as big of a prize as seizing the world's largest diplomatic facility would be for whoever can take it (be it Iran, Iranian-allied, or otherwise), there's no way that Trump would let that happen. Just like the Berlin Airlift of the Old Cold War, the US would carry out a Baghdad Airlift if it need be, which could entail leveling entire neighborhoods in order to prevent its enemies from hiding anti-air missiles there for taking down its air assets. One can only speculate how such a scenario would unfold, but there shouldn't be any question in anyone's mind about the US backing down, especially not during an election year and definitely not after Trump proudly boasted that this is his "anti-Benghazi" moment. Another potential retaliatory scenario is disrupting energy transit through the Strait of Hormuz, but that would affect more than just the US and surely elicit universal condemnation from everyone except perhaps allied Syria, just like if Hezbollah or other IRGC-allied forces decide to bomb " Israel " (in which case it and the US would certainly respond through military means).

Don't Expect Russia Or China To Save Iran

It's "politically inconvenient" for many of Iran's supporters across the world to accept, but the country doesn't have any state-based military allies willing to go to war alongside it except perhaps Syria, but the SAA has been utterly devastated over the last 9 years and is now a shadow of its former self. There is also absolutely no way that Russia would allow Syria to actively participate in any state-based military hostilities alongside Iran because doing so would endanger the forces and substantial investments that it has in the Arab Republic nowadays. Speaking of which, Russia isn't Iran's ally, but "Israel's" , though it wouldn't go to war alongside the self-professed "Jewish State" but rather stay out of any potential conflict between the two (which wouldn't last long considering that the US' conventional dominance could crush the Islamic Republic within days if Trump authorized it to be unleashed to its fullest extent and he was willing to accept the previously mentioned costs).

Neither Russia nor China would go to war in support of Iran, though they could be expected to issue very strong statements of condemnation against the US and anyone else who might conventionally attack it (whether "preemptively" or as "retaliation"). This objectively existing and easily verifiable statement of fact will likely take many in Alt-Media by surprise who have been indoctrinated over the past couple of years with fake news "analyses" alleging that those two Eurasian Great Powers are "anti-American" and willing to fight the US in order to "save the world". That will never happen unless one of them is attacked first (though even in that case, neither would go to war for the other because they've made it clear that they're not "military allies" ), which probably won't happen because of the concept of Mutually Assured Destruction (MAD), at least not unless the US is able to surmount that "obstacle" through the combination of its anti-missile technology and "Space Forces". In any case, nobody should expect Russia or China to rush to Iran's aid and defend it from the US.

Concluding Thoughts

The most likely outcome of Maj. Gen. Soleimani's assassination is an intensified period of proxy wars in Iraq, Syria, Lebanon, and Yemen which stays just below the conventional threshold given Iran's inability to survive an overwhelming US' "retaliatory" strike if Trump authorized one in response to the unlikely massive missile strike that some speculate Tehran might be preparing. The US might also carry out "surgical strikes" against places in Iran where it might claim other strikes were "organized", such as if Yemen's Ansarullah attempt to repeat their successful drone strike against Saudi Aramco from last September. "Decapitation strikes" might therefore become increasingly more frequent and nobody would be safe, not even Hezbollah's Nasrallah in the worst-case scenario, since the US just signaled that it has the political will to take out "high-value targets". As all of this unfolds, Russia and China will do their utmost to stay away from any regional fray and definitely wouldn't intervene to defend Iran. As such, Iran's expected responses will be purely asymmetrical and not conventional.

*

Note to readers: please click the share buttons above or below. Forward this article to your email lists. Crosspost on your blog site, internet forums. etc.

This article was originally published on OneWorld .

Andrew Korybko is an American Moscow-based political analyst specializing in the relationship between the US strategy in Afro-Eurasia, China's One Belt One Road global vision of New Silk Road connectivity, and Hybrid Warfare. He is a frequent contributor to Global Research.

[Jan 08, 2020] Big, bad Putin attacked by slimy rat Browder.

Jan 08, 2020 | thenewkremlinstooge.wordpress.com

Is there a chorus of politicians singing in there about how lazy they are, and how they never bothered to verify Browder' story? The story is indeed remarkable, but not in the way that first appears.

Stephen Fry / @stephenfry

You may or may not know the remarkable story of @Billbrowder and the #MagnitskyAct - find out the startling truth by listening to
#MagnitskytheMusical by the wondrous @JohnnyFlynnHQ & @roberthudson - @BBCRadio3 7.30 Sun 12th Jan

Magnitsky the Musical

Book and lyrics by Robert Hudson
Music and lyrics by Johnny Flynn

12 January 2020
О 1 hour, 34 minutes

Johnny Flynn and Robert Hudson bring us a musical based on the
incredible story of an American venture capitalist, a Russian tax
advisor, a crazy heist, the Trump Tower meeting and the very rule of
law.

Blending music and satire, the story explores the truths and fictions
surrounding the origins and aftershocks of the Magnitsky Act; global
legislation which allows governments to sanction those who they see
as offenders of human rights.

It tells the story of a tax adviser's struggle to uncover a huge tax
fraud, his imprisonment by the very authorities he is investigating,
and the American financier's crusade for justice.

Johnny Flynn, Paul Chahidi and members of the cast perform songs in
a epic story that explores democracy, corruption, and how we
undervalue the law at our peril.

Bill Paul Chahidi Sergei Johnny Flynn Jamie Fenella Woolgar Natalia Ellie Kendrick Kuznetsov Gus Brown Guard Clive Hayward Silchenko Ian Conningham Jared Will Kirk Fisherman Neil McCaul Judge Jessica Turner

Additional singing by Sinead Maclnnes, Laura Christy, Scarlett
Courtney and Lucy Reynolds.

The cellist is Joe Zeitlin. Sound is by Peter Ringrose. Directed by Sasha Yevtushenko.

[Jan 08, 2020] Iraqi Journalist: Killing Soleimani "Ended An Era In Which Iran And The United States Coexisted In Iraq" by Tim Hains

Highly recommended!
Notable quotes:
"... Now, he told "Democracy Now!", it will be hard for the Iraqi public to see the bases as anything but "a force that is driving them into a war between Iran and the United States." ..."
"... "Qassem Soleimani could travel openly in Iraq. I mean, remember, Qassem Soleimani arrived in Baghdad airport, where half of it is an American base. Qassem Soleimani could travel openly in Iraq. He took selfies. People took his pictures. That didn't happen in secret. Qassem Soleimani was not Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi hiding in a cave or moving stealthily through the country. He stayed in the Green Zone. So, all this happened because there was an understanding between the Americans and the Iranians. So, if the Americans wanted to keep their bases in Iraq, the Iranians would have the freedom to move. And with the killing of Soleimani, the rules of the game have totally changed," he said. ..."
Jan 06, 2020 | www.realclearpolitics.com

https://www.youtube.com/embed/TKvE-nIsj1Y?enablejsapi=1&origin=https:%2F%2Fwww.realclearpolitics.com

"The Guardian" journalist Ghaith Abdul-Ahad says that before the attack on Qassem Soleimani in Baghdad last week "there was an understanding between the Americans and the Iranians" that allowed officials from Iran and the U.S. to move freely within Iraq and maintained relative goodwill toward American bases.

"The killing of Qassem Soleimani ended an era in which both Iran and the United States coexisted in Iraq," he said.

Now, he told "Democracy Now!", it will be hard for the Iraqi public to see the bases as anything but "a force that is driving them into a war between Iran and the United States."

"Qassem Soleimani could travel openly in Iraq. I mean, remember, Qassem Soleimani arrived in Baghdad airport, where half of it is an American base. Qassem Soleimani could travel openly in Iraq. He took selfies. People took his pictures. That didn't happen in secret. Qassem Soleimani was not Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi hiding in a cave or moving stealthily through the country. He stayed in the Green Zone. So, all this happened because there was an understanding between the Americans and the Iranians. So, if the Americans wanted to keep their bases in Iraq, the Iranians would have the freedom to move. And with the killing of Soleimani, the rules of the game have totally changed," he said.

AMY GOODMAN: Ghaith, can you comment on this new information that's come to light about the timing of Soleimani's assassination Friday morning? Iraq's caretaker Prime Minister Adel Abdul-Mahdi has revealed he had plans to meet with Soleimani on the day he was killed to discuss a Saudi proposal to defuse tension in the region. Mahdi said, quote, "He came to deliver me a message from Iran responding to the message we delivered from Saudi Arabia to Iran" -- Saudi Arabia, obviously, a well-known enemy of Iran. Was he set up? Talk about the significance of this.

GHAITH ABDUL-AHAD: Well, it is very significant if it's actually General Qassem Soleimani came to Iraq to deliver this message, if it was actually there was a process of negotiations in the region. We know that Abdul-Mahdi and the Iraqi government, in general, over the last year had been trying to position Iraq as this middle power, as this power where both -- you know, as a country that has a relationship with both Iran and the United States. In that awkward place Iraq found itself in, Iraq has tried to maximize on this. So they started back in summer and fall, when there was an escalation between Iran and the United States, when Iran shot down an American drone. We've seen Adel Abdul-Mahdi fly to Iran, try to mediate. We've seen Adel Abdul-Mahdi open channels of communications with the Gulf, with Saudi Arabia.

So, if it actually, the killing of General Soleimani, ended that peace initiative, it will be kind of disastrous in the region, because, as Narges was saying earlier, it is -- you know, Pompeo is speaking about Iran being this ultimate evil in the region, as this crescent of Shias, as if they just arrived in the past 10 years in the region. The fact if we see Iran's reactions, it's always a reaction to an American provocation. You've seen the occupation of Iraq in 2003. You've seen Iran declared as an "axis of evil." So, if you see it from an Iranian perspective, it's always this existential threat coming from the United States. And I don't think there is a more existential threat than in past year. So, yes, I know -- I mean, I think Adel Abdul-Mahdi and the Iraqi government were trying to find this middle ground, which I think is totally lost, because even Adel Abdul-Mahdi, the person who was trying to find this middle ground, was the person who proposed this law yesterday in the Parliament to expel all American troops from the country.

And I would like to add like another thing. The killing of Qassem Soleimani ended an era in which both Iran and the United States coexisted in Iraq. So, from 2013, '14, we, as journalists, we've seen on the frontlines how the proxies of each power have been helping each other. So we've seen Iranian advisers helping the American-trained Iraqi Army unit or counterterrorism unit in the fight against ISIS. In the same sense, we've seen American airstrikes on threats to these -- kind of to ISIS when it was threatening these militias. That coexistence, it didn't only come from both having a -- sharing an enemy, which is ISIS, or Daesh, but also these were the rules of the game. These were the rules in which Qassem Soleimani could travel openly in Iraq. I mean, remember, Qassem Soleimani arrived in Baghdad airport, where half of it is an American base. Qassem Soleimani could travel openly in Iraq. He took selfies. People took his pictures. That didn't happen in secret. Qassem Soleimani was not Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi hiding in a cave or moving stealthily through the country. He stayed in the Green Zone. So, all this happened because there was an understanding between the Americans and the Iranians. So, if the Americans wanted to keep their bases in Iraq, the Iranians would have the freedom to move. And with the killing of Soleimani, I think the rules of the game have totally changed.

So now I think the first victim of the assassination will be the American bases in Iraq. I don't see any way where the Americans can keep their presence as they did before the assassination of Soleimani. And even the people in the streets, even the people who opposes Iran, who opposes the presence of Iranian militias in power and politics, the corruption of these pro-Iranian parties, even those people would look at these American bases now as not as a force that came to help them in the fight against ISIS, but a force that's dragging them into a war between Iran and the United States.

[Jan 06, 2020] Russia's Real Reasons for Partnering with Iran by Nadya Glebova

July 13, 2019 | nationalinterest.org

Moscow has a vested interest in the state of affairs in the Persian Gulf; it has tried its best to contain the impact that the U.S.-Iranian crisis could have on its own national security.

The third area of focus is connected with overlapping humanitarian and economic concerns that impact both Russia and Iran. These concerns have been footholds in the history of mutual relationships since the time of Russian and Persian empires. Nowadays both of the countries are trying to compensate for their failures by pursuing policies that promote their own and unique civilizations. In this situation the humanitarian sphere is one of the strategic ones allowing to pursue long-term aims. Of note, Russian-Iranian educational and cultural projects have doubled since the Trump administration announced its strategy for Iran. While the United States has been focused on "bringing Iran to its knees," Russia has been focused on the future. Economic ties between these two countries have been strengthening over the past few years, with bilateral trade reaching $2 billion in 2018.

Hopefully, Russia and Iran will maintain a positive relationship despite their differences and past difficulties. For example, in 2016 Russian forces were pushed off of a military base in Iran that it had used to conduct military operations in Syria. The strategic shift happened after the Iranians squabbled over whether foreign forces should be allowed to use an Iranian military base. Also, the two countries have had some disputes over the fate of Syria. Despite these issues, Russia maintains a positive relationship with Iran, which it further confirmed during a June 25 meeting between national security advisers John Bolton, Meir Ben-Shabbat and Nikolai Patrushev. During the meeting, Patrushev, the Secretary of the Russian Security Council, declared that Russia would continue to accommodate Iran's interests in the Middle East because it remains "the ally and partner" of choice in Syria. Both countries are focused on preventing further destabilization in the region, he said.

Nadya Glebova is a fellow at the Institute of Oriental Studies of the Russian Academy of Sciences, a MENA researcher.

[Jan 06, 2020] Putin's Hour Is At Hand - PaulCraigRoberts.org

Notable quotes:
"... Putin's Hour Is At Hand was published in the Russian press Monday morning, January 6, 2020. ..."
Jan 06, 2020 | www.paulcraigroberts.org

Putin's Hour Is At Hand January 4, 2020 | Categories: Articles & Columns | Tags: | Print This Article Print This Article

Putin's Hour Is At Hand was published in the Russian press Monday morning, January 6, 2020.

Putin's Hour Is At Hand

Paul Craig Roberts

Vladimir Putin is the most impressive leader on the world stage. He survived and arose from a Russia corrupted by Washington and Israel during the Yeltsin years and reestablished Russia as a world power. He dealt successfully with American/Israeli aggression against South Ossetia and against Ukraine, incorporating at Crimea's request the Russian province back into Mother Russia. He has tolerated endless insults and provocations from Washington and its empire without responding in kind. He is conciliatory and a peacemaker from a position of strength.

He knows that the American empire based as it is on arrogance and lies is failing economically, socially, politically, and militarily. He understands that war serves no Russian interest.

Washington's murder of Qasem Soleimani, a great Iranian leader, indeed, one of the rare leaders in world history, has dimmed Trump's leadership and placed the limelight on Putin. The stage is set for Putin and Russia to assume the leadership of the world.

Washington's murder of Soleimani is a criminal act that could start World War 3 just as the Serbian murder of the Austrian Archduke set World War 1 in motion. Only Putin and Russia with China's help can stop this war that Washington has set in motion.

Putin understood that the Washington/Israeli intended destabilization of Syria was aimed at Russia. Without warning Russia intervened, defeated the Washington financed and armed proxy forces, and restored stability to Syria.

Defeated, Washington and Israel have decided to bypass Syria and take the attack on Russia directly to Iran. The destabilization of Iran serves both Washington and Israel. For Israel Iran's demise stops support for Hezbollah, the Lebanese militia that has twice defeated Israel's army and prevented Israel's occupation of southern Lebanon. For Washington Iran's demise allows CIA-supported jihadists to bring instability into the Russian Federation.

Unless Putin submits to American and Israeli will, he has no choice but to block any Washington/Israeli attack on Iran.

The easiest and cleanest way for Putin to do this is to announce that Iran is under Russia's protection. This protection should be formalized in a mutual defense treaty between Russia, China, and Iran, with perhaps India and Turkey as members. This is hard for Putin to do, because incompetent historians have convinced Putin that alliances are the cause of war. But an alliance such as this would prevent war. Not even the insane criminal Netanyahu and the crazed American neoconservatives would, even when completely drunk or deluded, declare war on Iran, Russia, China, and if included in the alliance India and Turkey. It would mean the death of America, Israel and any European country sufficiently stupid to participate.

If Putin is unable to free himself from the influence of incompetent historians, who in effect are serving Washington, not Russian, interests, he has other options. He can calm down Iran by giving Iran the best Russian air defense systems with Russian crews to train the Iranians and whose presence serve as a warning to Washington and Israel that an attack on Russian forces is an attack on Russia.

This done, Putin can then, not offer, but insist on mediating. This is Putin's role as there is no other with the power, influence and objectivity to mediate.

Putin's job is not so much to rescue Iran as to get Trump out of a losing war that would destroy Trump. Putin could set his own price. For example, Putin's price can be the revival of the INF/START treaty, the anti-ballistic missile treaty, the removal of NATO from Russian borders. In effect, Putin is positioned to demand whatever he wants.

Iranian missiles can sink any American vessels anywhere near Iran. Chinese missiles can sink any American fleets anywhere near China. Russian missiles can sink American fleets anywhere in the world. The ability of Washington to project power in the Middle East now that everyone, Shia and Sunni and Washington's former proxies such as ISIS, hates Americans with a passion is zero. The State Department has had to order Americans out of the Middle East. How does Washingon count as a force in the Middle East when no American is safe there?

Of course Washington is stupid in its arrogance, and Putin, China, and Iran must take this into consideration. A stupid government is capable of bringing ruin not only on itself but on others.

So there are risks for Putin. But there are also risks for Putin failing to take charge. If Washington and Israel attack Iran, which Israel will try to provoke by some false flag event as sinking an American warship and blaming Iran, Russia will be at war anyway. Better for the initiative to be in Putin's hands. And better for the world and life on Earth for Russia to be in charge.

[Jan 06, 2020] Neocon Pompeo pushed Trump to kill Soleimani; Looks like West Point educated military contactor mafia to which Pompeo and Esper belongs controls the President, although Trump malleability and recklessness are inexcusable

Highly recommended!
So Trump instead of draining the swamp brought swamp creatures like Pompeo into his Administration; now he can pay the price.
Notable quotes:
"... The greenlighting of the airstrike near Baghdad airport represents a bureaucratic victory for Pompeo ..."
"... "We took a bad guy off the battlefield. We made the right decision," Pompeo told CNN. "I'm proud of the effort that President Trump undertook." ..."
"... On Dec. 29, Pompeo, Esper and Milley traveled to the president's private club in Florida, where the two defense officials presented possible responses to Iranian aggression, including the option of killing Soleimani, senior U.S. officials said. ..."
"... One significant factor was the "lockstep" coordination for the operation between Pompeo and Esper, both graduates in the same class at the U.S. Military Academy, who deliberated ahead of the briefing with Trump, senior U.S. officials said. Pence also endorsed the decision, but he did not attend the meeting in Florida. ..."
"... Some defense officials said Pompeo's claims of an imminent and direct threat were overstated, and they would prefer that he make the case based on the killing of the American contractor and previous Iranian provocations. ..."
"... On Sunday, Iran announced that it was suspending all limits of the nuclear deal, including on uranium enrichment, research and development, and enlarging its stockpile of nuclear fuel. Britain, France and Germany, as well as Russia and China, were original signatories of that deal with the United States and Iran, and all opposed Trump's decision to withdraw from the pact. ..."
"... "No one trusts what Trump will do next, so it's hard to get behind this," said the European diplomat. ..."
"... Since his time as CIA director, Pompeo has forged a friendship with Yossi Cohen, the director of the Israeli intelligence service Mossad, said a person familiar with their meetings. The men have spoken about the threat posed by Iran to both Israel and the United States. In a prescient interview in October, Cohen said Soleimani "knows perfectly well that his elimination is not impossible." ..."
"... At every step of his government career, Pompeo has tried to stake out a maximalist position on Iran that has made him popular among two critical pro-Israel constituencies in Republican politics: conservative Jewish donors and Christian evangelicals. ..."
"... After Trump tapped Pompeo to lead the CIA, Pompeo quickly set up an Iran Mission Center at the agency to focus intelligence-gathering efforts and operations, elevating Iran's importance as an intelligence target. ..."
Jan 06, 2020 | www.washingtonpost.com

The secretary also spoke to President Trump multiple times every day last week, culminating in Trump's decision to approve the killing of Iran's top military commander, Maj. Gen. Qasem Soleimani, at the urging of Pompeo and Vice President Pence, the officials said, speaking on the condition of anonymity to discuss internal deliberations.

Pompeo had lost a similar high-stakes deliberation last summer when Trump declined to retaliate militarily against Iran after it downed a U.S. surveillance drone, an outcome that left Pompeo "morose," according to one U.S. official. But recent changes to Trump's national security team and the whims of a president anxious about being viewed as hesitant in the face of Iranian aggression created an opening for Pompeo to press for the kind of action he had been advocating.

The greenlighting of the airstrike near Baghdad airport represents a bureaucratic victory for Pompeo, but it also carries multiple serious risks: another protracted regional war in the Middle East; retaliatory assassinations of U.S. personnel stationed around the world; an interruption in the battle against the Islamic State; the closure of diplomatic pathways to containing Iran's nuclear program; and a major backlash in Iraq, whose parliament voted on Sunday to expel all U.S. troops from the country.

For Pompeo, whose political ambitions are a source of constant speculation , the death of U.S. diplomats would be particularly damaging given his unyielding criticisms of former secretary of state Hillary Clinton following the killing of the U.S. ambassador to Libya and other American personnel in Benghazi in 2012.

But none of those considerations stopped Pompeo from pushing for the targeted strike, U.S. officials said, underscoring a fixation on Iran that spans 10 years of government service from Congress to the CIA to the State Department.

"We took a bad guy off the battlefield. We made the right decision," Pompeo told CNN. "I'm proud of the effort that President Trump undertook."

Pompeo first spoke with Trump about killing Soleimani months ago, said a senior U.S. official, but neither the president nor Pentagon officials were willing to countenance such an operation.

For more than a year, defense officials warned that the administration's campaign of economic sanctions against Iran had increased tensions with Tehran, requiring a bigger and bigger share of military resources in the Middle East when many at the Pentagon wanted to redeploy their firepower to East Asia.

How the siege of the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad unfolded On Jan. 1, the siege on the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad appeared to come to an end after supporters of the Iranian-backed Kataib Hezbollah militia retreated. (Liz Sly, Joyce Lee, Mustafa Salim/The Washington Post)

Trump, too, sought to draw down from the Middle East as he promised from the opening days of his presidential campaign. But that mind-set shifted on Dec. 27 when 30 rockets hit a joint U.S.-Iraqi base outside Kirkuk, killing an American civilian contractor and injuring service members.

On Dec. 29, Pompeo, Esper and Milley traveled to the president's private club in Florida, where the two defense officials presented possible responses to Iranian aggression, including the option of killing Soleimani, senior U.S. officials said.

Trump's decision to target Soleimani came as a surprise and a shock to some officials briefed on his decision, given the Pentagon's long-standing concerns about escalation and the president's aversion to using military force against Iran.

One significant factor was the "lockstep" coordination for the operation between Pompeo and Esper, both graduates in the same class at the U.S. Military Academy, who deliberated ahead of the briefing with Trump, senior U.S. officials said. Pence also endorsed the decision, but he did not attend the meeting in Florida.

"Taking out Soleimani would not have happened under [former secretary of defense Jim] Mattis," said a senior administration official who argued that the Mattis Pentagon was risk-averse. "Mattis was opposed to all of this. It's not a hit on Mattis, it's just his predisposition. Milley and Esper are different. Now you've got a cohesive national security team and you've got a secretary of state and defense secretary who've known each other their whole adult lives."

Mattis declined to comment.

In the days since the strike, Pompeo has become the voice of the administration on the matter, speaking to allies and making the public case for the operation. Trump chose Pompeo to appear on all of the Sunday news shows because he "sticks to the line" and "never gives an inch," an administration official said.

But critics inside and outside the administration have questioned Pompeo's justification for the strike based on his claims that "dozens if not hundreds" of American lives were at risk.

[ Trump faces Iran crisis with fewer experienced advisers and strained relations with allies ]

Lawmakers left classified briefings with U.S. intelligence officials on Friday saying they heard nothing to suggest that the threat posed by the proxy forces guided by Soleimani had changed substantially in recent months.

When repeatedly pressed on Sunday about the imminent nature of the threats, whether it was days or weeks away, or whether they had been foiled by the U.S. airstrike, Pompeo dismissed the questions.

"If you're an American in the region, days and weeks -- this is not something that's relevant," Pompeo told CNN.

Some defense officials said Pompeo's claims of an imminent and direct threat were overstated, and they would prefer that he make the case based on the killing of the American contractor and previous Iranian provocations.

Critics have also questioned how an imminent attack would be foiled by killing Soleimani, who would not have carried out the strike himself.

"If the attack was going to take place when Soleimani was alive, it is difficult to comprehend why it wouldn't take place now that he is dead," said Robert Malley, the president of the International Crisis Group and a former Obama administration official.

Following the strike, Pompeo has held back-to-back phone calls with his counterparts around the globe but has received a chilly reception from European allies, many of whom fear that the attack puts their embassies in Iran and Iraq in jeopardy and has now eliminated the chance to keep a lid on Iran's nuclear program.

"We have woken up to a more dangerous world," said France's Europe minister, Amelie de Montchalin.

Two European diplomats familiar with the calls said Pompeo expected European leaders to champion the U.S. strike publicly even though they were never consulted on the decision.

"The U.S. has not helped the Iran situation, and now they want everyone to cheerlead this," one diplomat said.

"Our position over the past few years has been about defending the JCPOA," said the diplomat, referring to the 2015 Iran nuclear deal.

On Sunday, Iran announced that it was suspending all limits of the nuclear deal, including on uranium enrichment, research and development, and enlarging its stockpile of nuclear fuel. Britain, France and Germany, as well as Russia and China, were original signatories of that deal with the United States and Iran, and all opposed Trump's decision to withdraw from the pact.

"No one trusts what Trump will do next, so it's hard to get behind this," said the European diplomat.

Pompeo has slapped back at U.S. allies, saying "the Brits, the French, the Germans all need to understand that what we did -- what the Americans did -- saved lives in Europe as well," he told Fox News.

Israel has stood out in emphatically cheering the Soleimani operation, with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu praising Trump for "acting swiftly, forcefully and decisively."

"Israel stands with the United States in its just struggle for peace, security and self-defense," he said.

Since his time as CIA director, Pompeo has forged a friendship with Yossi Cohen, the director of the Israeli intelligence service Mossad, said a person familiar with their meetings. The men have spoken about the threat posed by Iran to both Israel and the United States. In a prescient interview in October, Cohen said Soleimani "knows perfectly well that his elimination is not impossible."

Though Democrats have greeted the strike with skepticism, Republican leaders, who have long viewed Pompeo as a reassuring voice in the administration, uniformly praised the decision as the eradication of a terrorist who directed the killing of U.S. soldiers in Iraq after the 2003 U.S.-led invasion.

"Soleimani made it his life's work to take the Iranian revolutionary call for death to America and death to Israel and turn them into action," Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) said.

A critical moment for Pompeo is nearing as he faces growing questions about a potential Senate run, though some GOP insiders say that decision seems to have stalled. Pompeo has kept in touch with Ward Baker, a political consultant who would probably lead the operation, and others in McConnell's orbit, about a bid. But Pompeo hasn't committed one way or the other, people familiar with the conversations said.

Some people close to the secretary say he has mixed feelings about becoming a relatively junior senator from Kansas after leading the State Department and CIA, but there is little doubt in Pompeo's home state that he could win.

At every step of his government career, Pompeo has tried to stake out a maximalist position on Iran that has made him popular among two critical pro-Israel constituencies in Republican politics: conservative Jewish donors and Christian evangelicals.

After Trump tapped Pompeo to lead the CIA, Pompeo quickly set up an Iran Mission Center at the agency to focus intelligence-gathering efforts and operations, elevating Iran's importance as an intelligence target.

At the State Department, he is a voracious consumer of diplomatic notes and reporting on Iran, and he places the country far above other geopolitical and economic hot spots in the world. "If it's about Iran, he will read it," said one diplomat, referring to the massive flow of paper that crosses Pompeo's desk. "If it's not, good luck."

[Jan 06, 2020] Democrats demand answers on Soleimani killing - This is not a game

Most probably Pompeo was cheating and deceived Trump to get the approval of this asssasination. now with his head on the block he is trying to avoid the responsibility.
Notable quotes:
"... Speaking on "Fox News Sunday," Rep. Chris Van Hollen, D-Md., said public assurances from the Trump administration that such a threat was "imminent" were simply not enough. ..."
"... Democratic presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg said on CNN's "State of the Union" that until the administration provides answers on "how this decision was reached ... then this move is questionable , to say the least." ..."
"... "I still worry about whether this president really understands that this is not a show, this is not a game," he said. "Lives are at stake right now." ..."
"... the administration has yet to make public its evidence that Soleimani was acting out of step in comparison with his years of similar planning as a leader in Iran's proxy wars and other covert operations, which have led to U.S. deaths . ..."
Jan 06, 2020 | www.nbcnews.com

Democrats on Sunday demanded answers about the killing of top Iranian Gen. Qassem Soleimani as tensions mounted with Iran and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo insisted that the United States had faced an imminent threat.

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., said on ABC's "This Week" that he worried that President Donald Trump's decision "will get us into what he calls another endless war in the Middle East ." He called for Congress to "assert" its authority and prevent Trump from "either bumbling or impulsively getting us into a major war."

Speaking on "Fox News Sunday," Rep. Chris Van Hollen, D-Md., said public assurances from the Trump administration that such a threat was "imminent" were simply not enough.

"I think we learned the hard way ... in the Iraq War that administrations sometimes manipulate and cherry-pick intelligence to further their political goals," he said.

"That's what got us into the Iraq War. There was no WMD," or weapons of mass destruction, he said. "I'm saying that they have an obligation to present the evidence."

Democratic presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg said on CNN's "State of the Union" that until the administration provides answers on "how this decision was reached ... then this move is questionable , to say the least."

"I still worry about whether this president really understands that this is not a show, this is not a game," he said. "Lives are at stake right now."

Booker: 'All Americans should be concerned right now' JAN. 5, 2020 04:18

The fraught relationship with Iran has significantly deteriorated in the days since Soleimani's death, which came days after rioters sought to storm the U.S. Embassy compound in Baghdad and a U.S. contractor was killed in a rocket attack on an Iraqi military base in Kirkuk.

The Defense Department said Soleimani, the high-profile commander of Iran's secretive Quds Force, who was accused of controlling Iranian-linked proxy militias across the Middle East, orchestrated the attacks on bases in Iraq of the U.S.-led coalition fighting the Islamic State militant group, including the strike that killed the U.S. contractor. In addition, the Defense Department said Soleimani approved attacks on the embassy compound in Baghdad.

" We took action last night to stop a war ," Trump said Friday in a televised address, referring to the airstrike that killed Soleimani. "We did not take action to start a war."

But the administration has yet to make public its evidence that Soleimani was acting out of step in comparison with his years of similar planning as a leader in Iran's proxy wars and other covert operations, which have led to U.S. deaths .

Iran and its allies vowed to retaliate for the general's death, and Trump has since escalated his language in response.

Download the NBC News app for breaking news and politics

[Jan 06, 2020] Diplomacy Trump-style. Al Capone probably would be allow himself to fall that low

Highly recommended!
Jan 06, 2020 | www.moonofalabama.org

Fec , Jan 5 2020 15:23 utc | 3

"We have learned today from #Iraq Prime Minister AdilAbdl Mahdi how @realDonaldTrump uses diplomacy:
#US asked #Iraq to mediate with #Iran. Iraq PM asks #QassemSoleimani to come and talk to him and give him the answer of his mediation, Trump &co assassinate an envoy at the airport."

https://twitter.com/ejmalrai/status/1213833855754485762

[Jan 05, 2020] The USA is now at war, de-facto and de-jure, with BOTH Iraq and Iran (UPDATED 6X) The Vineyard of the Saker

Highly recommended!
Notable quotes:
"... work to end the presence of any foreign troops on Iraqi soil and prohibit them from using its land, airspace or water for any reason ..."
"... Iraqi cleric Moqtada al-Sadr said the parliamentary resolution to end foreign troop presence in the country did not go far enough, calling on local and foreign militia groups to unite . I also have confirmation that the Mehdi Army is being re-mobilized . ..."
"... The United States just spent Two Trillion Dollars on Military Equipment. We are the biggest and by far the BEST in the World! If Iran attacks an American Base, or any American, we will be sending some of that brand new beautiful equipment their way…and without hesitation! ..."
Jan 05, 2020 | thesaker.is
The blowback has begun

First, let’s begin by a quick summary of what has taken place (note: this info is still coming in, so there might be corrections once the official sources make their official statements).

  1. Iraqi Prime Minister Adil Abdl Mahdi has now officially revealed that the US had asked him to mediate between the US and Iran and that General Qassem Soleimani to come and talk to him and give him the answer to his mediation efforts. Thus, Soleimani was on an OFFICIAL DIPLOMATIC MISSION as part of a diplomatic initiative INITIATED BY THE USA .
  2. The Iraqi Parliament has now voted on a resolution requiring the government to press Washington and its allies to withdraw their troops from Iraq.
  3. Iraq’s caretaker PM Adil Abdul Mahdi said the American side notified the Iraqi military about the planned airstrike minutes before it was carried out. He stressed that his government denied Washington permission to continue with the operation.
  4. The Iraqi Parliament has also demanded that the Iraqi government must “ work to end the presence of any foreign troops on Iraqi soil and prohibit them from using its land, airspace or water for any reason
  5. The Iraqi Foreign Ministry said that Baghdad had turned to the UN Security Council with complaints about US violations of its sovereignty .
  6. Iraqi cleric Moqtada al-Sadr said the parliamentary resolution to end foreign troop presence in the country did not go far enough, calling on local and foreign militia groups to unite . I also have confirmation that the Mehdi Army is being re-mobilized .
  7. The Pentagon brass is now laying the responsibility for this monumental disaster on Trump (see here ). The are now slowly waking up to this immense clusterbleep and don’t want to be held responsible for what is coming next.
  8. For the first time in the history of Iran, a Red Flag was hoisted over the Holy Dome Of Jamkaran Mosque , Iran. This indicates that the blood of martyrs has been spilled and that a major battle will now happen . The text in the flag say s “ Oh Hussein we ask for your help ” (u nofficial translation 1) or “ Rise up and avenge al-Husayn ” (unofficial translation 2)
  9. The US has announced the deployment of 3’000 soldiers from the 82nd Airborne to Kuwait .
  10. Finally, the Idiot-in-Chief tweeted the following message , probably to try to reassure his freaked out supporters: “ The United States just spent Two Trillion Dollars on Military Equipment. We are the biggest and by far the BEST in the World! If Iran attacks an American Base, or any American, we will be sending some of that brand new beautiful equipment their way…and without hesitation! “. Apparently, he still thinks that criminally overspending for 2nd rate military hardware is going to yield victory…
Analysis

Well, my first though when reading these bullet points is that General Qasem Soleimani has already struck out at Uncle Shmuel from beyond his grave . What we see here is an immense political disaster unfolding like a slow motion train wreck. Make no mistake, this is not just a tactical "oopsie", but a major STRATEGIC disaster . Why?

For one thing, the US will now become an official and totally illegal military presence in Iraq. This means that whatever SOFA (Status Of Forces Agreement) the US and Iraq had until now is void.

Second, the US now has two options:

Fight and sink deep into a catastrophic quagmire or Withdraw from Iraq and lose any possibility to keep forces in Syria

Both of these are very bad because whatever option Uncle Shmuel chooses, he will lost whatever tiny level of credibility he has left, even amongst his putative "allies" (like the KSA which will now be left nose to nose with a much more powerful Iran than ever before).

The main problem with the current (and very provisional) outcome is that both the Israel Lobby and the Oil Lobby will now be absolutely outraged and will demand that the US try to use military power to regime change both Iraq and Iran.

Needless to say, that ain't happening (only ignorant and incurable flag-wavers believe the silly claptrap about the US armed forces being "THE BEST").

Furthermore, it is clear that by it's latest terrorist action the USA has now declared war on BOTH Iraq and Iran.

This is so important that I need to repeat it again:

The USA is now at war, de-facto and de-jure , with BOTH Iraq and Iran.

I hasten to add that the US is also at war with most of the Muslim world (and most definitely all Shias, including Hezbollah and the Yemeni Houthis).

Next, I want to mention the increase in US troop numbers in the Middle-East. An additional 3'000 soldiers from the 82nd AB is what would be needed to support evacuations and to provide a reserve force for the Marines already sent in. This is NOWHERE NEAR the kind of troop numbers the US would need to fight a war with either Iraq or Iran.

Finally, there are some who think that the US will try to invade Iran. Well, with a commander in chief as narcissistically delusional as Trump, I would never say "never" but, frankly, I don't think that anybody at the Pentagon would be willing to obey such an order. So no, a ground invasion is not in the cards and, if it ever becomes an realistic option we would first see a massive increase in the US troop levels, we are talking several tens of thousands, if not more (depending on the actual plan).

No, what the US will do if/when they attack Iran is what Israel did to Lebanon in 2006, but at a much larger scale. They will begin by a huge number of airstrikes (missiles and aircraft) to hit:

Iranian air defenses Iranian command posts and Iranian civilian and military leaders Symbolic targets (like nuclear installations and high visibility units like the IRGC) Iranian navy and coastal defenses Crucial civilian infrastructure (power plants, bridges, hospitals, radio/TV stations, food storage, pharmaceutical installations, schools, historical monuments and, let's not forget that one, foreign embassies of countries who support Iran). The way this will be justified will be the same as what was done to Serbia: a "destruction of critical regime infrastructure" (what else is new?!)

Then, within about 24-48 hours the US President will go on air an announce to the world that it is "mission accomplished" and that "THE BEST" military forces in the galaxy have taught a lesson to the "Mollahs". There will be dances in the streets of Tel Aviv and Jerusalem (right until the moment the Iranian missiles will start dropping from the sky. At which point the dances will be replaced by screams about a "2nd Hitler" and the "Holocaust").

Then all hell will break loose (I have discussed that so often in the past that I won't go into details here).

In conclusion, I want to mention something more personal about the people of the US.

Roughly speaking, there are two main groups which I observed during my many years of life in the USA.

Group one : is the TV-watching imbeciles who think that the talking heads on the idiot box actually share real knowledge and expertise. As a result, their thinking goes along the following lines: " yeah, yeah, say what you want, but if the mollahs make a wrong move, we will simply nuke them; a few neutron bombs will take care of these sand niggers ". And if asked about the ethics of this stance, the usual answer is a " f**k them! they messed with the wrong guys, now they will get their asses kicked ".

Group two : is a much quieter group. It includes both people who see themselves as liberals and conservatives. They are totally horrified and they feel a silent rage against the US political elites. Friends, there are A LOT of US Americans out there who are truly horrified by what is done in their name and who feel absolutely powerless to do anything about it. I don't know about the young soldiers who are now being sent to the Middle-East, but I know a lot of former servicemen who know the truth about war and about THE BEST military in the history of the galaxy and they are also absolutely horrified.

I can't say which group is bigger, but my gut feeling is that Group Two is much bigger than Group One. I might be wrong.

I am now signing off but I will try to update you here as soon as any important info comes in.

The Saker

UPDATE1 : according to the Russian website Colonel Cassad , Moqtada al-Sadr has officially made the following demands to the Iraqi government:

Immediately break the cooperation agreement with the United States. Close the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad. Close all U.S. military bases in Iraq. Criminalize any cooperation with the United States. To ensure the protection of Iraqi embassies. Officially boycott American products.

Cassad (aka Boris Rozhin) also posted this excellent caricature:

UPDATE2: RT is reporting that " One US service member, two contractors killed in Al-Shabaab attack in Kenya, two DoD personnel injured ". Which just goes to prove my point that spontaneous attacks are what we will be seeing first and that the retaliation promised by Iran will only come later.

UPDATE3 : al-Manar reports that two rockets have landed near the US embassy in Baghdad.

UPDATE4 : Zerohedge is reporting that Iranian state TV broadcasted an appeal made during the funeral procession in which a speaker said that each Iranian ought to send one dollar per person (total 80'000'000 dollars) as a bounty for the killing of Donald Trump. I am trying to get a confirmation from Iran about this.

UPDATE5 : Russian sources claim that all Iranian rocket forces have been put on combat alert.

UPDATE6 : the Russian heavy rocket cruiser "Marshal Ustinov" has cross the Bosphorus and has entered the Mediterranean.

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63 Comments

Anonymous on January 05, 2020 , · at 2:39 pm EST/EDT

Iraqi Prime Minister Adil Abdl Mahdi has now officially revealed that the US had asked him to mediate between the US and Iran and that General Qassem Soleimani to come and talk to him and give him the answer to his mediation efforts. Thus, Soleimani was on an OFFICIAL DIPLOMATIC MISSION as part of a diplomatic initiative INITIATED BY THE USA.

If this is true, it makes America's murder of General Soleimani even more outrageous. This would be like the USA sending an American regime official to some other country for a negotiation only to have him/her drone striked in the process!

America reveals its malign character as even more sick that even its opponents have thought possible.

Perhaps, Iran should request that Mike Pompeo come to Baghdad for a negotiation about General Soleimani 's murder and then "bug splat" Pompeo's fat ass from a drone!

Anonymous on January 05, 2020 , · at 3:08 pm EST/EDT
"For one thing, the US will now become an official and totally illegal military presence in Iraq. This means that whatever SOFA (Status Of Forces Agreement) the US and Iraq had until now is void."

-I actually read somewhere that the Iraqi government is just a caretaker government and even thought it voted to remove foreign forces, it is not actually legally binding.

Anyone that can conform or deny?

Lysander on January 05, 2020 , · at 4:18 pm EST/EDT
I'm no lawyer. I don't see why that would matter. If a caretaker government is presented with a crisis, why would it not have the authority to act?

That said, It could be the line the US government chooses to use to insist its presence is still legal. If course the MSM will repeat and repeat and make it seem real.

Serbian girl on January 05, 2020 , · at 4:42 pm EST/EDT
Not the entire government. Only the PM Mahdi as far as I understand. He resigned after some protests. The parliament approved his resignation on Dec 2019. He is the caretaker until they appoint another PM.
https://www.theguardian.com/world/2019/nov/29/iraq-pm-resign-protests-abdul-mahdi-al-sistani
Pamela on January 05, 2020 , · at 4:59 pm EST/EDT
Couldn't agree more. When I read that my jaw dropped and I'm sure my eyes went huge. I just couldn't believe they could be that stupid, or that immoral, that sunk in utter utter depravity. They truly are those who have not one shred of decency, and thus have no way of recognising or understanding what decency is. Pure psychopath – an inability to grasp the emotions, values, and world view of those who are normal. This truly is beyond the pale, and this above everything else will ensure the revenge the heartbroken people of Iran are seeking. May God bless them.
Mark on January 05, 2020 , · at 2:45 pm EST/EDT
Well, this is going to be interesting for sure. I for one cannot see any way out for the Yankees, so I expect them to do their usual doubling down .

Assassinate some more people, airstrikes etc.

Hans on January 05, 2020 , · at 2:51 pm EST/EDT
The US Armed Forces do not need to be 'THE BEST". All they need is mountains of second rate ordinance to re-bury Iraq bury Iran under rubble. They can then keep their forces in tightly fortified compounds and bomb the c**p out of any one who wants to 'steal their oil', or any one who wants to 'steal the land promised by God to the Chosen People'. The U.S. has always previously been limited in their avarice for destruction by their desire to be viewed as the 'good guy'. This limitation has now been stripped away. There is now nothing to stop the AngloZionist entity except naked force in return.

As the Saker says, 'all hell will break loose '.

Anonymous on January 05, 2020 , · at 3:09 pm EST/EDT
"realistic option we would first see a massive increase in the US troop levels, we are talking several tens of thousands, if not more (depending on the actual plan)."

-There is an interesting article on colonal cassad about this, USA actually has around 100k troops in ME spread out over various bases.
https://colonelcassad.livejournal.com/5543349.html

Yes, but these are not part of a single force, many of these are more a target than a threat. Besides, they need to be concentrated into a a few single forces to actually participate in an invasion.
The Saker

Anonymouse on January 05, 2020 , · at 4:15 pm EST/EDT
To understand troop size and relevance think along these lines. For every US front line soldier there will be 5 others in support roles, logistics etc. So for every front line fighting Marine there will be 5 others who got him there and who support him in his work. 10,000 front line fighting troops means 50,000 troops shipping out to the borders of Iran. I think perhaps you would need 100,000 US front line troops for an invasion AND occupation (because we all know if they go in they aren't going to leave quickly) We're talking about half a million US troops, this simply isn't going to happen for multiple reasons, not least they need to amass at some form of base (probably Iraq – yeah right) maybe Kuwait? They'd just be a constant sitting target. Saker is correct in that if this goes down it's going to be an air campaign (will the Iranians use the S300s they have?) and possibly Navy supported. the Israelis will help out but in turn make themselves targets at home for rocket attacks. Again I can't see it happening, it would take too long to arrange plus from the moment it kicks off every US base, individual is just a target to the majority of anti US forces spread across the whole middle east. I expect back door diplomacy, probably to little effect, and a ham fisted token blitz of cruise missiles and drone bombs at Iranian infrastructure, sadly this will not work for the Americans, we will have a long running campaign on ME ground but also mass terrorist activity across the US and some of its allies. Its a best guess scenario but if that plays out whatever happens to Iran this war will be another long running death by a 1000 cuts for the US and will guarantee Trump does not get re-elected.
Whoever sold this to Trump (Bolton via Pompeo? Bibi?) has really lit the touch paper of ruin. Yes it stinks of Netanyahoo but it also reaks of full strength neocon, Bolton style. Trump is dumb enough to fall for it and obviously did.
Cosimo on January 05, 2020 , · at 5:38 pm EST/EDT
1. To read the Colonel Cassad website in English or any other language, just go to https://translate.yandex.com/ and then paste in the Cassad URL, which is given above but again, it's https://colonelcassad.livejournal.com/ The really nice thing is that when you click on links, Yandex Translate automatically translates those links. Two problems, though. 1. For some unknown reason, Yandex always first translates Cassad as English-to-Russian, and then you have to click on a little window near the top left, to again request Russian-to-English and then it translates everything fine. I do not experience this problem when using Yandex on any other website. 2. Unlike what Benders-Lee intended when he invented the web browser, the "back button" almost doesn't work on Yandex Translate. So always right-click to open links in a new tab.

2. The US could probably carry out a large number of air attacks, but the Iranian response would be to destroy all the Gulf oil facilities AND everything worth bombing in Israel. This potential for offense is Iran's best defense, and, I think, the main reason why there hasn't been a war. Iran's air defense missiles are probably more effective than the lying MSM will admit, and might shoot down a large percentage of the humans and aluminum the US would throw at Iran, but it's a matter of attrition, and Iran would suffer grave damage. We can't rule out that that might be the plan since the Empire is run by psychopaths. A US Army elite training manual, from 2012 in Kansas, implied that by 2020, Europe would not be a major power. Perhaps they were thinking that Europe would go out of business from a lack of Persian Gulf oil.

3. As for a ground war against Iran, I don't think the US or even the US with the former NATO coalition, would have any hope and they know it. A real invasion force would require at least 250,000 troops, probably 500,000, maybe more. 80 million very determined and united Iranians, many of whom who don't fear martyrdom, would make the Vietnam War look like a bad picnic with fire ants . Yes, Vietnam had jungle for guerillas to hide behind, but South Vietnamese society was divided and many supported the Americans. Iran has no such division. Even the Arab province of Khuzestan would stand united, knowing how the Shiite Arabs are mistreated in the Eastern Province and in Kuwait.

Tom Welsh on January 05, 2020 , · at 5:31 pm EST/EDT
"They can then keep their forces in tightly fortified compounds "

eating and drinking what? When no Iraqi will even speak to them, let alone do anything for them.

Greifenburg on January 05, 2020 , · at 2:52 pm EST/EDT
Count me in as part of group two. As a former U.S. Army service member I can assure anyone reading this that this action is an historic strategic mistake. What the Saker has outlined above is very likely. There is most probably no way to walk back now. Who in the ME would negotiate with the U.S. Government? Their perfidy is well known. Many citizen in this country feel like they are held hostage by a government that doesn't represent their interests or feelings. I hope the people in the ME know this.
The Saker on January 05, 2020 , · at 2:57 pm EST/EDT
Since the folks in the ME know that the US is a "pretend democracy" they also realize that the people of the USA are just as oppressed by the AngloZionist regime as the people abroad. Frankly, I have traveled on a lot of countries and I have never come across anything like real hostility towards the US American people. The very same people who hate Uncle Shmuel very much enjoy US music, literature, movies, novel ideas, etc. I believe that the Empire is truly hated across the globe, but not the people of the USA.
Kind regards
The Saker
Melotte 22 on January 05, 2020 , · at 3:23 pm EST/EDT
As long as people of the USA tolerate their government criminal activities around the world, and this is happening for last 70 years, I don't agree with your comment. These crimes are commited in the name of people of the USA, who are doing nothing to prevent them. As for movies coming from US, most of them are propaganda about 'exceptional nation'. No thanks.
Auslander on January 05, 2020 , · at 4:09 pm EST/EDT
The United States of America is not a democracy, it is a constitutional republic. That being said, the fall elections are going to be of significant interest.

With kindest regards
Auslander

Nachtigall on January 05, 2020 , · at 4:18 pm EST/EDT
Couldn't agree with you less Saker. They share the spoils of war, generation after generation. From the killing of indigenous population to neocolonial resource extraction today, they get their cut. You cannot have it both ways, enjoying the spoils of war and hiding behind invalid rationalizations, pretending you have no-thingz to do with that.
The Saker on January 05, 2020 , · at 3:12 pm EST/EDT
Russian TV says that there were anti-war demonstrations in 80 (!) US cities.
I don't have the time to check whether this is true, but it sure sounds credible to me.
The Saker
Anonymous on January 05, 2020 , · at 3:24 pm EST/EDT
Greetings Mr. Saker,

This information is true. I personally took part in the march in Denver, Colorado. I would estimate we had about 500 people, which is a lot more than most anti-war protests have ever gotten in recent memory.

Do not count out the possibility of a sudden large and massive anti-war movement suddenly springing out of nowhere.

Unfortunately, I do not see how "peaceful" protests will accomplish anything on their own. Rioting may be necessary. The system needs to be shut down and commerce slow to a crawl so that nobody may ignore this.

The Saker on January 05, 2020 , · at 3:32 pm EST/EDT
Thank you for this precious confirmation!
And keep up the good fight!
Kind regards
The Saker
durlin on January 05, 2020 , · at 4:25 pm EST/EDT
anonymous, fellow Coloradoan here, would appreciate some info on where I need to look for the next one,. I will be there
Richard Sauder on January 05, 2020 , · at 2:55 pm EST/EDT
Yes. I am thinking about the Deagel.com numbers again. They're starting to come into better focus.

http://www.deagel.com/country/forecast.aspx

I agree that there will first be a period of violent confusion, followed by -- well, what sane person even wants to think about what possible horrors lie ahead?

The threat of one or more spectacular false flag attacks to further fan the flames would also appear to be a possibility.

Real evil has been unleashed, that is clear. The empire has decided to fight, and to fight very dirty.

Nikolai on January 05, 2020 , · at 3:08 pm EST/EDT
Wasn't the Saker working in the employ of the US or NATO when they attacked Srbija without cause? Because that was my understanding.

Actually, no. I was working at the UN Institute for Disarmament Research.
But thanks for showing everybody how ugly, petty and clueless ad hominem using trolls can be!
The Saker

Marko on January 05, 2020 , · at 4:20 pm EST/EDT
Looks like our Nikolai is a Canvas Otpor Belgrade troll.
Serbian girl on January 05, 2020 , · at 4:46 pm EST/EDT
Or perhaps not Serbian at all
Flabbergasted on January 05, 2020 , · at 3:11 pm EST/EDT
"I can't say which group is bigger, but my gut feeling is that Group Two is much bigger than Group One. I might be wrong."

My personal observation is unfortunately the opposite. I think the population that is over 40 is probably leans 80% toward the TV-watching imbecile category with zero critical thinking abilities and exposure to four plus decades of propaganda. The population under 40 is largely too apathetic to have an opinion and unwilling to engage in research.

History will most likely play out in disaster resulting from a corrupt ruling class, systemic institutional rot, and brain-washed public not realizing what's happened.

Nikolai on January 05, 2020 , · at 3:23 pm EST/EDT
I will hazard a guess and say there are far more men than women in Group 1, and many more draft-age young adults of both sexes in Group 2.

But by and large a disturbing number of people in America regard world events as being akin to a football game, with Team A and Team B and a score to be kept. If things don't appear to be going well for their "team," they speak and behave irrationally, with crass statements like "nuke the whole place and turn it into a glass parking lot." Impressive, isn't it? Grown adults, comporting themselves like overindulged little children, always accustomed to getting their way – and displaying a terrifying willingness to set the whole house on fire when they don't.

It is a spiritual illness which pollutes the USA. Terrible things will have to happen before the society can become well, again

Anonymous on January 05, 2020 , · at 3:26 pm EST/EDT
Even if only 20% of the population join us, that will be enough. Because guess what? The TV-watching imbeciles are fat, lazy, and they won't do anything to support the government either, and they definitely aren't brave enough to get in the way of an angry mob
JJ on January 05, 2020 , · at 5:08 pm EST/EDT
About 50% of UK people opposed the UK intervention into Iraq .1 m people held marches on London and cities ..made no difference.
cdvision on January 05, 2020 , · at 3:39 pm EST/EDT
Its not just the US that's braindead. This from a once reputable newspaper in the UK

https://www.telegraph.co.uk/politics/2020/01/05/boris-johnson-calls-de-escalation-iran-us-killing-ofgeneral/

Its behind a paywall so you only get the first few paragraphs – frankly all you need. BUT its the comments that tell the story!

Pamela on January 05, 2020 , · at 5:11 pm EST/EDT
It's interesting to me, this comment of Sakers'. I have been thinking, with these revelations of the utter depravity and total lack of what was once called "honour " and treating the enemy with respect, of a few instances which seemed to show me that not all of America was like this.

There is a scene in the much loved but short lived** TV series "Firefly" in which the rebel "outsider" spaceship Captain offers a doctor on the run a berth with them. The Doctor says "but you dont like me. You could kill me in my sleep" to which the Captain replies "Son, you dont know me yet, So let me tell you know, If i ever try to kill you, you will be awake, you will be facing me, and you will be armed"

Exactly I thought. There is a Code of Honour by which battles used to be fought. This latest by US has shown how low it's Ruling Regime is, that is doesn't not see that. But from examples like the above, I gathered that there are people in America who still hold to it closely – and that's good to know.

** Short lived because it showed as it's heroes a group of people who lived outside the Ruling Tyrannical Regime, who had fought for Independence and lost, and now lived "by their wits" and not always according to law. Not surprising that the rulers of US weren't going to allow that to go to air!!

Nikolai on January 05, 2020 , · at 3:13 pm EST/EDT
Wasn't the Saker working in the employ of the US and NATO when they attacked and bombed Srbija without cause? Because that was my understanding.

Thanks, now we all know how good your "understanding" is!
The Saker :-P

Rufus Palmer on January 05, 2020 , · at 3:32 pm EST/EDT
Unfortunately I believe the largest group in the USA is the "nuke 'em group". All of my friends watch Fox and none have an understanding of the empire.

Sake thank you as always for your excellent work. What do you think Iran will attack first?

teranam13 on January 05, 2020 , · at 3:19 pm EST/EDT
Thanks Saker for this discussion/information space you provide when nothing is very trustworthy and on what is a holiday week end for you.

Two points:
Never underestimate the perfidy of the Kurds. They held back on the censure/withdrawal vote in the Iraqi\
parliament and are probably offering withdrawal airport space for US military.

And Agreed, about most Americans being absolutely horrified and ashamed.Even Alex Jones had to put Syrian Girl on and to post her on video.banned. One of his callers demanded that Alex apologize to his listening audience on "bended knee" for his support of Trump's attack on Iran. When Alex tried to schmooze
the irate caller -- The man started yelling -- "Who cares, Alex, who cares about Iran my neighbors have no jobs
and are dying from drug overdoses. who cares about Israel? Let them take care of themselves."

Trump has sealed his own fate on many levels and ours her in looneylandia. It is said that a nation gets the leadership it deserves. We are about to become a nation of the yard-sale.

Craig Mouldey on January 05, 2020 , · at 3:27 pm EST/EDT
Whew, this is something to chew on and try to digest. That first point jumped right off the page. General Soleimani was on an official diplomatic mission, requested by the U.S.! They set him up and were waiting for him to get in his car at the airport and go onto the road.
The entire world will know there is no way to justify this. It is just as ugly as the public murder of JFK. They have zero credibility in all they say and do. It will be interesting to see who supports what is coming and who have gotten the message from this murder and have decided they cannot support this beast.
Clarence on January 05, 2020 , · at 3:33 pm EST/EDT
How many missiles does the us have in the middle east?
How many air defense missiles does have iran?
Does iran have the ability to destroy us airbases to prevent aircraft from attacking iranian territory? That would be my first move: destroying the ennemy s fighter jets while they are still on the ground.
How many missiles does iran can launch ? How far can they hit?
I think these are important questions if we want to make a good assessment of the situation
One Tribe on January 05, 2020 , · at 3:36 pm EST/EDT
Thank you for the continuing courageous, fact-based reporting.

All as-yet-unenslaved-minds of the oppressed people living under the auspices of the empire share the horror of what has happened, made worse so, for I personally, learning the evil duplicity of the 'fake' diplomacy of the masters of the U.S.A. administration.
If there had been any credibility whatsoever, left for the U.S.A. diplomatic integrity, it is now completely murdered.

I should like to point out, yet again, the perverse obviousness of the utter subordination of the utterly testiclesless america n ' leadership ' by the affiliates, dually loyal extra-nationals, aligned to the quasi-nation of pychopathic hatred against humanity.

In spite of, and now increasingly because of, the absurd perception management/propaganda agencies, completely controlled by this aforementioned affiliation, and their ongoing absurd efforts, people are becoming aware of the ultimate source of the hatred and agenda we re witnessing in the ME, and indeed, in ever country under the auspices of the empire.
It is becoming impossible to cover, even for the most timid followers of the citizens of empire-controlled nation states.
The war continues against the non-subliminated citizens, and will certainly escalate as the traction of the perception-management techniques have been pushed way over their best-before date.

Even not wanting to know this, people are becoming aware of it.

I urge all those self-identifying with this affiliation of secretive hatred against humanity to disavow either publicly, or privately, this collective of hatred.
The recusement of the fifth-column will undermine these machinations.

It is now the time to realize that no promise of superior upward mobility, in exchange for activities supporting the affiliation, is worth the stark prospect of complete destruction of the biosphere.

Paul23 on January 05, 2020 , · at 3:38 pm EST/EDT
Saker: what makes you think it will just be a couple of days of bombing? I would have thought they would set up a no fly zone then fly over that country permanently blowing the shit out of any military thing on the ground until the gov collapses.

Iran doesn't have the ability to prevent this & running a country under these conditions is impossible.

Randy Brady on January 05, 2020 , · at 4:10 pm EST/EDT
Set up a no-fly zone over Iran? Iran is well aware of American air-power. They have a multi-layer air defense. And I wouldn't be surprised that the Iranian's are capable of taking out U.S. satellites.

Iran knows their enemy. They have been preparing for conflict with the U.S. for 40 years. This is a sophisticated, and highly advanced nation, with brilliant leadership. They understand what their weaknesses are, and what their strengths are.

The wild cards are threefold: Russia. China. North Korea. If one wants to think about the possible asymmetrical capabilities of those three, let alone the pure power their militaries, it boggles the mind.

Prediction: The U.S. stands down on orders of their own military. People like John Bolton quietly pass away in their sleep.

Kilombo Zumbi on January 05, 2020 , · at 5:02 pm EST/EDT
The only no fly zone to be implemented will be on all american warplanes over Iran and Iraq. Do you remember the multimillion drone that went down? Multipliy it by hundreds of manned planes. God, how delusional can you be?!!!
You have a fighting force that is a disgrace composed by little girls that start screeming once they get bullets flying over their heads. You have aircraft battle groups that are sitting ducks waitng to go to the bottom of the sea. Wake up and get your pills, man!
Tom Welsh on January 05, 2020 , · at 5:39 pm EST/EDT
Paul23, from where will the aircraft take off to implement your "no-fly zone"? Any air base within 2,000 km would be destroyed by a shower of cruise missiles and possibly drones.

Any aircraft carrier within 2,000 km likewise.

Mike from Jersey on January 05, 2020 , · at 3:45 pm EST/EDT
File this next article under "Just when you thought that things couldn't get any crazier."

Pompeo is slamming Europe for not being supportive of the American murders in the Middle East.

https://www.zerohedge.com/geopolitical/europeans-havent-been-helpful-after-suleimani-killing-pompeo-slams-allies-not

Nussiminen on January 05, 2020 , · at 3:48 pm EST/EDT
It is Group 1 -- loud, reactionary, extremely vulgar, militant parasites -- which defines the US national character. Exceptional and indispensable simply mean "entitled to other peoples' natural resources and labour output". Trying to reason with these lowlives is a waste of time. Putin understands this; hence the new Russian weapons. The latter will be needed very soon.
Mike from Jersey on January 05, 2020 , · at 4:08 pm EST/EDT
I am an American and I am not sure that is true.

Americans are a good people but America is one of the most heavily propagandized nations in the world. The media is corrupt. The educational systems teach a sanitized version of history. But that is only a part of it.

Pro-Military propaganda is everywhere. Even before the Superbowl, jet bombers fly over the stadium – as if Militarism constituted a basic American value. At Airports, "Military Personnel" are given preferential boarding. At retail stores customers are asked to make donations to "military families." College football games are dedicated to "Military Appreciation Day." High Schools work in unison with Military Recruiters to steer students into the Military. Even playground facilities for children that have video displays display pro military messages. And that is just the tip of the iceberg.

Most of this propaganda is paid for out of the obscene military budget. The average citizen doesn't have a chance.

Americans are a good people, if they really knew what was being done in their name, they would put a stop to it.

Nussiminen on January 05, 2020 , · at 4:37 pm EST/EDT
Militant parasites do live in a world of total lies, deception, and delusion but never at the expense of their survival instincts. US imperial coercion, mayhem, and murder globally are absolutely crucial to the American way of life, and the 99% know it. Their living standards would drop enormously without the imperial loot. Thus, they dearly yearn for all the repression, war, and chauvinism they vote for and more.
Steki on January 05, 2020 , · at 3:53 pm EST/EDT
One thing is telling, at least for me. Who the f in the right state of mind kills other state's official and then admits of doing it?!? The common sense sense tells me that you do something and to avoid bigger consequences you stay quet and deny everything. Just like CIA is doing. Trump just put US military personnel in grave danger. We know how they accused Manning for showing the to the world US war crimes. They put him in the jail for what Trump just did. But, I cannot believe that they are that much stupid. If US does not want war, as Trump is saying, they could have done this and then blame someone else because now it has been shown that they wanted to "talk" to Iran, as Iraqis PM said. At least, US brought new meaning to the word "talk"
Rostislav_Velka_Morava on January 05, 2020 , · at 3:56 pm EST/EDT
Russia will not allow this, and will put their foot down.
Hussan Carim on January 05, 2020 , · at 4:00 pm EST/EDT
The most damaging, no most devestating, assymetrical attack on the US would be a 'non violent' attack.

Let me quickly explain.

It has been well known since the exposure of the man behind the curtain during the great financial crisis of 2007-08 that all Human operations – all Human life in fact – is financialised in some way.

Some ways being so sophisticated or 'subtle' that barely 1 person in 1000 is even aware, much less capable of understanding them, much less the financial control grid (and state / deepstate power base) which empoverishs them and enslaves them to an endless cycle of aquiring and spending 'money'.

Look deeply and the wise will see how 'Human resources' (as opposed to Human Beings) are herded like cattle to be worked on the farm, 'fleeced', or slaughtered as appropriate to the money masters.

We have been programmed, trained, and conditioned to call 'currency units' (dollar/euro/pound/yuan, etc) 'money', when they are actually nothing of the sort, they are state or bank issued money substitutes.

In the middle east and north africa some leaders recognised this determined how to escape slavery and subjegation. They attempted to field this knowledge like an economic-nuke, but without the massive protection required, and they were destroyed by the empire – Sadam Hussain with his oil for Gold (and oil for Euros) program, and Col. Gadaffi of Libya with his North African 'Gold Dinar' and 'Silver Durham' Islamic money program.

To cut a very long story short – the evil empire depends upon all nations and peoples excepting thier pieces of paper currency units as 'real' money – which the empire print / create in unlimited quantities to fund thier war machine and global progrram of domination.

All financial markets are either denominated or settled in US Dollars (or are at least convertable).

All Nations Central Banks (except Irans I believe) are linked via various US Dollar exchange / liquidity mechanisms, and all 'settle' in US Dollars.

Currently all nations use US controlled electronic banking communications / exchange / tranfer systems (swift being the most well known).

Would it therefore not make sence to go for the very beating heart of the Beast – the US financial system?

The most powerful attack against the empire would therefore be against this power base – the global reserve currency – the US dollar – and the US ability to print any quantity of it (or create digits on a screen and call them 'Dollar Units').

It would be pointless trying to fight an emnemy capable of printing for free enough currency to buy every resource (including peoples lives) – unless that super ability was destroyed or disrupted.

Example of a massive nuclear equivilent attack on the beast would be an internal and major disrruption of interbank electronic communications (at all levels from cash machine operation and card payment readers up to interbank transfers and federal banking operations).

Shut down the US banking system and you shut down the US war machine.

Not only that you shut down the US ability to buy resources and bribe powerful leaders – which means they wont be able to recover from such a blow quickly.

Shutting down banking and electronic payments of all kinds would cause the US people – particularly those currently enjoying bread and circus distraction and pacification – to tear appart thier own communities, and each other, as the spoiled and gready fight for the remaining resources, including food and fuel.

The 'grid' has been studied in great depth by both Russia and China (and Israel as part of thier neo-sampson option) and we can therefore deduce that Iran has some knowledge of how it works and where the weak links are (and not just the undersea optical cables and wireless nodes).

I, and a thousand other people have always said, the best, perhaps only way to defeat the US and end its reign of terror on this Earth is to take away its ability to create out of thin air the Worlds global reserve currency – the US Dollar.

Reducing the US to an empoverished 3rd world state by taking its check book away would be a worthy and lasting revenge and humiliation.

Amon Ra on January 05, 2020 , · at 4:09 pm EST/EDT
" I, and a thousand other people have always said, the best, perhaps only way to defeat the US and end its reign of terror on this Earth is to take away its ability to create out of thin air the Worlds global reserve currency – the US Dollar. "

No, the best way would be for each nation to ditch the intertwined, privately ( Rothschild ) controlled central banks, and to return to printing their own money. Anything, short of that will just perpetuate the same system from a different home base ( nation ), most likely China next. This virus can jump hosts and it will given a chance.

Auslander on January 05, 2020 , · at 4:03 pm EST/EDT
Who knows what will happen, but an actual boots on the ground invasion of Iran will not happen. Iran is not Irak and things have changed since that war.

US does not have 6 to 12 months to gather it's forces and logistics for an invasion (remember, the election is coming), plus US no longer has the heavy lift assets to do this. Toss in the fact that Iran is now on a war footing and has allies in the general AO, hired RoRo's and other logistics and supply assets will be targets before they get anywhere near the ports or beaches to off load. Plus, you can kiss oil goodbye, Iran will close the straights a nanosecond after the first bomb is in the air.

An air assault such as Serbia will be very expensive, Iran will fight back from the first bomb if not before, and Iran has a pretty viable air defense system and the missiles to make life miserable for any cluster of troops and logistics within roughly 300 kilometers of the borders if not longer. Look at a map. There is a long border between Iran and Irak, but as such and considering the terrain, any viable ground attack has to come from Irak territory. With millions of Iraki's seething at what Uncle Sugar just did and millions of Iranians seething at what Uncle Sugar just did, any invading troops will not be greeted with showers spring blossoms. To paraphrase a quote, 'You will be safe nowhere, our land will be your grave.'

Toss in the fact that an invasion of Irak, if even half successful, will put American troops on a war footing perilously close to Russian territory and possibly directly on the Russian Lake, aka Caspian Sea, and sovereign territory of Russia. Won't happen, VVP will not allow it.

Ergo, in spite of all the bluster and chest beating, at best all Foggy Bottom can do is bomb, bomb some more and bomb again. The cost in airframes and captured pilots will be a disaster and if RoRo's and other logistic heavy lift assets or bases are hit, the body bags coming back to Dover will be of numbers that can not be hidden as they are today with explanations that the dead are victims of training accidents or air accidents.

Foggy Bottom, and Five Points with Langley, have painted themselves in to a corner and unfortunately for them, (and it's within the realm of possibility that Five Points egged Trump on for this deal regardless of their protestations of innocence and surprise) they are now in a case of put up or shut up. As a point of honor they will continue down the spiral path of open warfare and war is like a cow voiding it's watery bowels, it splatters far beyond the intended target.

As my friend said a few years ago, damn you, damn your eyes, damn your souls, damn you back to Satan whose spawn you are. Go back to your fetid master and leave us in peace.

Auslander
Author http://rhauslander.com/

Never The Last One, paper back edition. https://www.amazon.com/dp/1521849056 A deep look in to Russia, her culture and her Armed Forces, in essence a look at the emergence of Russian Federation.

An Incident On Simonka. paperback edition. https://www.amazon.com/dp/1696160715 NATO Is Invited To Leave Sevastopol, One Way Or The Other.

Auslander on January 05, 2020 , · at 4:19 pm EST/EDT
"Toss in the fact that an invasion of Irak, if even half successful," should read:

"Toss in the fact that an invasion of Iran, if even half successful,"

It's late and this old man is tired. More tomorrow.

Auslander

Anonymous on January 05, 2020 , · at 4:04 pm EST/EDT
"UPDATE2: RT is reporting that "One US service member, two contractors killed in Al-Shabaab attack in Kenya, two DoD personnel injured". Which just goes to prove my point that spontaneous attacks are what we will be seeing first and that the retaliation promised by Iran will only come later."

-Al-Shabaab is a salafist terror group

Observer on January 05, 2020 , · at 4:17 pm EST/EDT
Saker, Some of us might be curious to know what your experience with the UN Institute for Disarmament Research informs you about the imminent Virginia gun bans and confiscations planned for this year and next. Can Empire afford to fight an actual shooting war on two fronts, one externally against Iraq/Iran and the second internally against its own people, some of whom will paradoxically be called away to fight on the first front? Perhaps the two conflicts could become conjoined as Uncle Shmuel mislabels every peaceful gun owner who just wants to be left alone as a foreign enemy-sympathizer and combatant by default, thereby turning brother against brother in a bloody prolonged hell in the regions immediately around Washington DC? Could the Empire *truly* be that suicidal?
Hajduk on January 05, 2020 , · at 4:20 pm EST/EDT
'Mr. Trump, the Gambler! Know that we are near you, in places that don't come to your mind. We are near you in places that you can't even imagine. We are a nation of martyrdom. We are the nation of Imam Hussein You are well aware of our power and capabilities in the region. You know how powerful we are in asymmetrical warfare You know that a war would mean the loss of all your capabilities. You may start the war, but we will be the ones to determine its end '
Gen. Soleimani (2018)
Bikkin on January 05, 2020 , · at 4:31 pm EST/EDT
Hello Saker,
I would like to ask you a question.
According to the Russian nuclear doctrine "The Russian Federation reserves the right to use nuclear weapons in response to the use of nuclear weapons or other weapons of mass destruction against itself or its allies and also in response to large-scale aggression involving conventional weapons in situations that are critical for the national security of the Russian Federation and its allies."
In your opinion does Russia consider Iran such an ally? Will Russia shield Iran against USAn / Israeli nuclear strikes? In case of an imminent nuclear strike on Iran is Russia (and possibly others) going to issue a nuclear ultimatum to the would-be aggressor? And in case an actual nuclear attack on Iran happens is Russia going to retaliate / deter further attacks with its own nukes?
What is your opinion?
One thing: please do not start explaining why the above scenario is completely unthinkable, unrealistic and why it would never ever happen. I need your opinion on the possible events if such an attack does take place or it is about to happen. I do not need reasons why it would not happen; I need your opinion what might take place if it does happen. If you cannot answer my question, have no opinion or simply do not want to answer it please let me know it.
In case there is a formal commitment by Russia – one I know not of – when, where was it made?
Thanks in advance.
Nachtigall on January 05, 2020 , · at 5:27 pm EST/EDT
2nd that, but be polite to the Saker. Ask nicely next time, like someone who is civilized.

Thanks you for your indispensable work, dear Saker!

Marko on January 05, 2020 , · at 4:32 pm EST/EDT
I think USA still has nuclear option.
They will not hesitate to use it on Iran if Israel is in danger.
So, I think Iran shall be defeated anyway, as USA is much stronger.

Wrong. If the US uses nukes, then this will secure the total victory of Iran.
The Saker

Nachtigall on January 05, 2020 , · at 5:31 pm EST/EDT
How does this secure a total victory, dear Saker? Please help my to understand this: Nukes on every major city, industrial site, infrastructure with pos. millions dead – how is this a victory?
robert on January 05, 2020 , · at 4:41 pm EST/EDT
So, how many hostages for Iran are in Iraq now?
Petro-G on January 05, 2020 , · at 4:44 pm EST/EDT
I think that if Iran were to launch some devastating missiles into Israel, either a US ship/submarine or Israel will launch a nuclear bomb into Iran. The US knows there is nothing to be gained by a ground invasion. If we [the US] were to start launching missiles into Iran, Iran would rightfully be launching sophisticated arms back toward US ships and Israel and the US can't stand for that. We are good at dishing it out, but lousy at receiving it.

I can only believe we assassinated Solieman [apologies] because it is the writhing of a dying petrodollar. The US is desperate. But I don't understand how going to war is supposed to help?

Stand Easy on January 05, 2020 , · at 4:56 pm EST/EDT
Some short comments on the strategic blunder made by US.

Meantime, global ramifications are being felt. View from China, one of the biggest consumers of ME oil:

https://www.globaltimes.cn/content/1175782.shtml

and some mind-reading from a HK based rag:

"Beijing's ties with Tehran are crucial to its energy and geopolitical strategies, and with Moscow also in the mix, a broader conflagration is a real possibility"

https://www.asiatimes.com/2020/01/article/could-china-take-irans-side-in-a-war-with-us/

Japan had planned to send some military hardware to the ME just before the new year but Gen Soleimani's murder may change the calculus.

https://www.japantimes.co.jp/news/2020/01/03/national/japan-sdf-assassination-iran-qassem-soleimani/#.XhJYxfLmjN4

Last but not least, Happy Nativity to all Orthodox Christians (thanks for the beautifully illustrated Orthodox calendar, The Saker.)
Let us all pray for peace.

Kent on January 05, 2020 , · at 5:33 pm EST/EDT
"(thanks for the beautifully illustrated Orthodox calendar, The Saker.)"

Credits for the calendar(s) should go to one of our in house Artists and poets Ioan.

You obviously do not visit the Cafe' very often, do you?

Regards
Kent

Wendy on January 05, 2020 , · at 5:24 pm EST/EDT
Trump is the King of the South. Killing under a flag of parley is a rare thing these days and is the reason why Trump will end up going to war with no allies by his side just like the path mapped oit for him in Daniel.

Analysis sans eschatology is Onism.

Tom on January 05, 2020 , · at 5:32 pm EST/EDT
It's not a blunder.
Trump's goals pre-assassination:
1) withdraw US troops from the ME ("Fortress America") and
2) placate Israel
This is how it is done. Not a direct "hey guys, we have to bring the boys home." Trump tried that and got smashed by the Deep State and Israel. Instead, he is going to force the Islamic world to do the talking for him by refusing to host our pariah army (that's all they have to do, not destroy a major US base or two). Then even the Deep State will admit it's a lost cause. He can say he did all he could while achieving his goals.
As The Saker pointed out, the troops being sent now are to evacuate, not to conquer Tehran. Next time this year the US will have its troops home and Trump will be reelected

[Jan 05, 2020] Trump is wholly responsible for his own actions, but he -- just like the Ayatollah -- is being pushed in a direction where it's impossible to back down and still "save face". Neither men can afford to do so by Andrew Korybko

Highly recommended!
Looks like Trump administration buried the Treaty of non-proliferation once and for all. From now on only a country with nuclear weapons can be viewed as a sovereign country.
Notable quotes:
"... To remind the reader once more, however, none of this would be happening had Iran not abandoned its "nuclear ambiguity" by agreeing to the 2015 Rouhani-Obama deal, with that event in hindsight being the tripwire that provoked the American military into wantonly escalating tensions with Iran ..."
"... Because they realized that the maximum costs that the Islamic Republic could inflict on it in response to their actions could be "manageable". ..."
"... The lesson to be learned from all of this is that the possession of nuclear weapons safeguards a country's sovereignty by enabling it to inflict "unmanageable"/"unacceptable" costs on its foes and thus deter their aggression, failing which leaders on both sides can be manipulated into a serious crisis. ..."
Jan 05, 2020 | astutenews.com

Astute News

Trump is wholly responsible for his own actions, but he -- just like the Ayatollah -- is being pushed in a direction where it's impossible to back down and still "save face". Neither men can afford to do so, which makes it likely that a lot more people than just Maj. Gen. Soleimani might be about to die.

To remind the reader once more, however, none of this would be happening had Iran not abandoned its "nuclear ambiguity" by agreeing to the 2015 Rouhani-Obama deal, with that event in hindsight being the tripwire that provoked the American military into wantonly escalating tensions with Iran (despite believing that they're doing so in "self-defense)

Because they realized that the maximum costs that the Islamic Republic could inflict on it in response to their actions could be "manageable".

The lesson to be learned from all of this is that the possession of nuclear weapons safeguards a country's sovereignty by enabling it to inflict "unmanageable"/"unacceptable" costs on its foes and thus deter their aggression, failing which leaders on both sides can be manipulated into a serious crisis.


By Andrew Korybko
Source: One World

[Jan 04, 2020] The Real Bob Mueller by Coleen Rowley

Notable quotes:
"... What's not well understood is that Comey's and Mueller's joint intervention to stop Bush's men from forcing the sick Attorney General to sign the certification that night was a short-lived moment. A few days later, they all simply went back to the drawing board to draft new legal loopholes to continue the same (unconstitutional) surveillance of Americans. ..."
"... Mueller is another spook dredged up from the bowels of Hell, in order to fool the honest citizens and ensure Deep State and its useful idiots continue on their way to Oblivion. ..."
"... Some history: Robert Swan Mueller III married his childhood sweetheart Ann Cabell Standish in 1966, three years after the JFK assassination. Her grandfather, Charles Cabell, was second in command at the CIA during the Bay of Pigs failure and was fired, along with Allen Dulles and Richard Bissell, for lying to him about the mission, which had been doomed to failure before its start. Her great uncle, Earle Cabell Jr. was the mayor of Dallas when it hosted the JFK assassination in 1963. Documents declassified in the last few years revealed that Earle Cabell was himself a "CIA asset" as well. Before anyone thinks that Mueller married into the CIA, his own great uncle was the aforementioned Richard Bissell. ..."
"... A closer review, here, shows Mueller's career covering up CIA criminal activities, to include Pan Am 103, the prosecution of Manuel Noriega, BCCI, 9/11 et al. He was promoted to handle those cases by former CIA Director GHW Bush. A week before 9/11 he took over as Director of the FBI, appointed by the son of the CIA Director, George W Bush. ..."
"... Joseph Misfud, a former ambassador for Malta, has been identified in Mueller's report as a Russian agent without proof. In fact, Misfud's career and allegiance has been to western intelligence. Mueller offers no proof to the contrary. But if in fact Misfud is an agent of Russia shouldn't he have made an attempt to interview him. Or interview Assange, who actually received the information? Or interview Craig Murray who claims to know about how the information was transferred from the DNC to Wikileaks? Or to William Binney? ..."
Jun 06, 2017 | consortiumnews.com

Robert Mueller Wednesday implied he would have indicted Donald Trump if he could have, resurrecting his saint-like status among Democrats who will now likely go for impeachment. But who is the real Bob Mueller? Ex-FBI official Coleen Rowley explained on June 6, 2017.

Mainstream commentators display amnesia when they describe former FBI Directors Robert Mueller and James Comey as stellar and credible law enforcement figures. Perhaps if they included J. Edgar Hoover, such fulsome praise could be put into proper perspective.

Mueller with President George W. Bush on July 5, 2001, as Bush nominated him to be FBI Director. (White House photo)

Although these Hoover successors, now occupying center stage in the investigation of President Trump, have been hailed for their impeccable character by much of Official Washington, the truth is, as top law enforcement officials of the George W. Bush Administration (Mueller as FBI Director and James Comey as Deputy Attorney General), both presided over post-9/11 cover-ups and secret abuses of the Constitution, enabled Bush-Cheney fabrications used to launch wrongful wars, and exhibited plain vanilla incompetence.

TIME Magazine would probably have not called my own disclosures a " bombshell memo " to the Joint Intelligence Committee Inquiry in May 2002 if it had not been for Mueller's having so misled everyone after 9/11. Although he bore no personal responsibility for intelligence failures before the attack, since he only became FBI Director a week before, Mueller denied or downplayed the significance of warnings that had poured in yet were all ignored or mishandled during the Spring and Summer of 2001.

Bush Administration officials had circled the wagons and refused to publicly own up to what the 9/11 Commission eventually concluded, "that the system had been blinking red ." Failures to read, share or act upon important intelligence, which a FBI agent witness termed " criminal negligence " in later trial testimony, were therefore not fixed in a timely manner. (Some failures were never fixed at all.)

Worse, Bush and Cheney used that post 9/11 period of obfuscation to "roll out" their misbegotten "war on terror," which only served to exponentially increase worldwide terrorism .

Unfulfilled Promise

I wanted to believe Director Mueller when he expressed some regret in our personal meeting the night before we both testified to the Senate Judiciary Committee. He told me he was seeking improvements and that I should not hesitate to contact him if I ever witnessed a similar situation to what was behind the FBI's pre 9/11 failures.

Some of the original detainees jailed at the Guantanamo Bay prison, as put on display by the U.S. military.

A few months later, when it appeared he was acceding to Bush-Cheney's ginning up intelligence to launch the unjustified, counterproductive and illegal war on Iraq, I took Mueller up on his offer, emailing him my concerns in late February 2003. Mueller knew, for instance, that Vice President Dick Cheney's claims connecting 9/11 to Iraq were bogus yet he remained quiet. He also never responded to my email.

Beyond ignoring politicized intelligence, Mueller bent to other political pressures. In the aftermath of the 9/11 attacks, Mueller directed the " post 9/11 round-up " of about 1,000 immigrants who mostly happened to be in the wrong place (the New York City area) at the wrong time. FBI Headquarters encouraged more and more detentions for what seemed to be essentially P.R. purposes. Field offices were required to report daily the number of detentions in order to supply grist for FBI press releases about FBI "progress" in fighting terrorism. Consequently, some of the detainees were brutalized and jailed for up to a year despite the fact that none turned out to be terrorists .

A History of Failure

Long before he became FBI Director, serious questions existed about Mueller's role as Acting U.S. Attorney in Boston in effectively enabling decades of corruption and covering up of the FBI's illicit deals with mobster Whitey Bulger and other "top echelon" informants who committed numerous murders and crimes. When the truth was finally uncovered through intrepid investigative reporting and persistent, honest judges, U.S. taxpayers footed a $100 million court award to the four men framed for murders committed by (the FBI-operated) Bulger gang.

Current media applause omits the fact that former FBI Director Mueller was the top official in charge of the Anthrax terror fiasco investigation into those 2001 murders , which targeted an innocent man (Steven Hatfil l) whose lawsuit eventually forced the FBI to pay $5 million in compensation. Mueller's FBI was also severely criticized by Department of Justice Inspector Generals finding the FBI overstepped the law improperly serving hundreds of thousands of "national security letters" to obtain private (and irrelevant) metadata on citizens, and for infiltrating nonviolent anti-war groups under the guise of investigating "terrorism."

For his part, Deputy Attorney General James Comey , too, went along with the abuses of Bush and Cheney after 9/11 and signed off on a number of highly illegal programs including warrantless surveillance of Americans and torture of captives . Comey also defended the Bush Administration's three-year-long detention of an American citizen without charges or right to counsel.

Up to the March 2004 night in Attorney General John Ashcroft's hospital room, both Comey and Mueller were complicit with implementing a form of martial law, perpetrated via secret Office of Legal Counsel memos mainly written by John Yoo and predicated upon Yoo's singular theories of absolute "imperial" or "war presidency" powers, and requiring Ashcroft every 90 days to renew certification of a "state of emergency."

The Comey/Mueller Myth

What's not well understood is that Comey's and Mueller's joint intervention to stop Bush's men from forcing the sick Attorney General to sign the certification that night was a short-lived moment. A few days later, they all simply went back to the drawing board to draft new legal loopholes to continue the same (unconstitutional) surveillance of Americans.

Former FBI Director James Comey

The mythology of this episode, repeated endlessly throughout the press, is that Comey and Mueller did something significant and lasting in that hospital room. They didn't. Only the legal rationale for their unconstitutional actions was tweaked.

Mueller was even okay with the CIA conducting torture programs after his own agents warned against participation. Agents were simply instructed not to document such torture, and any "war crimes files" were made to disappear. Not only did "collect it all" surveillance and torture programs continue, but Mueller's (and then Comey's) FBI later worked to prosecute NSA and CIA whistleblowers who revealed these illegalities.

Neither Comey nor Mueller -- who are reported to be " joined at the hip " -- deserve their current lionization among politicians and mainstream media. Instead of Jimmy Stewart-like "G-men" with reputations for principled integrity, the two close confidants and collaborators merely proved themselves, along with former CIA Director George "Slam Dunk" Tenet, reliably politicized sycophants, enmeshing themselves in a series of wrongful abuses of power along with official incompetence.

It seems clear that based on his history and close "partnership" with Comey, called "one of the closest working relationships the top ranks of the Justice Department have ever seen," Mueller was chosen as Special Counsel not because he has integrity but because he will do what the powerful want him to do.

Mueller didn't speak the truth about a war he knew to be unjustified. He didn't speak out against torture. He didn't speak out against unconstitutional surveillance. And he didn't tell the truth about 9/11. He is just "their man."

Coleen Rowley, a retired FBI special agent and division legal counsel whose May 2002 memo to then-FBI Director Robert Mueller exposed some of the FBI's pre-9/11 failures, was named one of TIME magazine's "Persons of the Year" in 2002. Her 2003 letter to Robert Mueller in opposition to launching the Iraq War is archived in full text on the NYT and her 2013 op-ed entitled " Questions for the FBI Nominee " was published on the day of James Comey's confirmation hearing. This piece will also be cross-posted on Rowley's Huffington Post page.)

Relevant links:


Rowena , June 2, 2019 at 15:32

When these reports come out that share how so-and-so corrupt federal official *actually* did this and this in his past, my fall back is to share (briefly) such news to my well-informed European friends.

Unlike "America" that's never been invaded, never suffered through the Black Plague, never went through an entire continent of revolutions, never met starvation and hundreds of millions of deaths from WWI & II, – instead, well-informed Europeans look at all this skullduggery with a shrug of their shoulders.

**If** the more informed Americans took the time to read about the World's History of carnage and traveled around the world, they would return home far, FAR wiser, and more informed citizens. What desperate shape America is in.

lila york , June 2, 2019 at 10:56

I am still waiting for someone – anyone – to take issue with Mueller report itself. I don't believe or trust a word of it. anyone?

Tiu , May 31, 2019 at 22:45

Descriptions such as "failure" and "incompetence" are not how I'd describe the intentional activities of Mueller, Comey and numerous other people purported working for democracy and law in the US and elsewhere. They are working purposefully on the New World Order agenda, which by definition will sooner or later render nation states and their governments obsolete. They are using the Hegelian Dialectic, Thesis, Antithesis, Synthesis, or Problem, Reaction, Solution to keep the little people running around lining up behind the numerous divisions that have been created for us with the help of the media and education systems.

jaycee , May 30, 2019 at 21:10

The anthrax attacks of 2001 were the double-tap to follow the events of 9/11, and were crucial to the successful passage of the Patriot Act. The Patriot Act effectively cancelled the privacy protections of the U.S. Constitution, and reversed the onus of a presumption of innocence in U.S. legal practice. The failure of the FBI, under the leadership of Mueller, to provide or uncover an adequate explanation for the anthrax attacks is a signature black mark in the FBI's history, if not the history of the republic.

Hank , May 31, 2019 at 09:24

"Failure" is just the icing on the cake that covers up INTENT! "Failure" should really be "criminal"!

alexandra Moffat , May 30, 2019 at 17:34

I knew that things could not possible be as angelic as portrayed regarding Mueller & Comey. But I didn't know any details. Any way to get this out in to the MSM. Thank you, Consortium and Ms Rowley.

BTW, Mueller was paid by us, the taxpayers. We deserve to see him questioned in person, alive, by a Congressional Hearing.

LJ , May 30, 2019 at 15:05

Well, then logically, one would have to assume that those in Trump's inner circle, for instance maybe Sessions and Rothstein , who advised and/or went along with the idea that Mueller should be appointed to investigate his successor and friend Comey were acting in the hope that Trump would eventually be forced from office. Clearly the information put forth in this article must have been known to all. Why did Trump go along with Mueller's appointment when obvious conflict of interest existed.? When an obvious fix was in? Had he no choice or was he blind and/or being led by the blind? I have read that he is an "extremely stable genius". At least so he says. How could he then be so stupid? Is he so arrogant that he is blind or was he intentionally ill advised by his own appointees and possibly the White House attorney ( I'm not talking Cohen here)? Good thing for him I guess that there was no tape to erase and the investigation went through to it's bitter end without actual obstruction. At least he's that smart. If the Democrats had won the Senate in the midterm he would be gone for certain.

East Indian , June 1, 2019 at 01:46

Mueller was appointed by Rod Rosenstein, on his own counsel. I doubt if the President or his office had any role in that.

LJ , June 1, 2019 at 14:40

Yeah since Sessions backed out of oversight , recused himself > The guy who volunteered to wear a wire to record an irrational Trump outburst which might perhaps be used to force Trump from office through application of the 25th Amendment was behind this appointment. Trump , the elected President could not stop the appointment of Mueller but could end the investigation which could automatically be considered as obstruction. Check/Checkmate. Exactly my point.

Raymond Comeau , May 30, 2019 at 14:14

Mueller is another spook dredged up from the bowels of Hell, in order to fool the honest citizens and ensure Deep State and its useful idiots continue on their way to Oblivion.

Bob In Portland , May 30, 2019 at 12:40

Some history: Robert Swan Mueller III married his childhood sweetheart Ann Cabell Standish in 1966, three years after the JFK assassination. Her grandfather, Charles Cabell, was second in command at the CIA during the Bay of Pigs failure and was fired, along with Allen Dulles and Richard Bissell, for lying to him about the mission, which had been doomed to failure before its start. Her great uncle, Earle Cabell Jr. was the mayor of Dallas when it hosted the JFK assassination in 1963. Documents declassified in the last few years revealed that Earle Cabell was himself a "CIA asset" as well. Before anyone thinks that Mueller married into the CIA, his own great uncle was the aforementioned Richard Bissell.

A closer review, here, shows Mueller's career covering up CIA criminal activities, to include Pan Am 103, the prosecution of Manuel Noriega, BCCI, 9/11 et al. He was promoted to handle those cases by former CIA Director GHW Bush. A week before 9/11 he took over as Director of the FBI, appointed by the son of the CIA Director, George W Bush.

Another key player in our current political show is William Barr. While Barr was getting his law degree he was employed by the CIA. Surprise surprise. One of the main figures in Russiagate is Paul Manafort, whose career consists of him working with world leaders who were either put into power by the CIA, kept in power by the CIA, removed from power by the CIA or murdered by the CIA. It should not be surprising to anyone willing to look that the current maneuvering appears to many to be an attempt to remove Trump from office.

Joseph Misfud, a former ambassador for Malta, has been identified in Mueller's report as a Russian agent without proof. In fact, Misfud's career and allegiance has been to western intelligence. Mueller offers no proof to the contrary. But if in fact Misfud is an agent of Russia shouldn't he have made an attempt to interview him. Or interview Assange, who actually received the information? Or interview Craig Murray who claims to know about how the information was transferred from the DNC to Wikileaks? Or to William Binney?

Robert Mueller is just doing what he's always done: cover up for the CIA.

https://caucus99percent.com/content/what-mueller-wont-find

Bob Van Noy , May 30, 2019 at 21:26

Many Thanks Bob In Portland. I was an 18 year old soldier in the 101st. Airborne on alert for the invasion of Cuba so I share you lifetime of frustration.

To the extent that there is "Continuity In Government", this is it. Great research and information

Drew Hunkins , May 30, 2019 at 10:15

Mueller's proven himself to be just another mouthpiece for power and the "respected" establishment. He's been championing the very dangerous lie that the Kremlin interfered in the '16 election, even though there has never been one piece of credible evidence proving that Moscow did any such thing.

As this canard gets repeated over and over it's sinking in to the public consciousness that the Putin administration is something to be feared.

exiled off mainstreet , May 30, 2019 at 00:00

This reveals the deplorable record of Mueller and Comey as lackeys for a corrupt authoritarian regime.

Doggrotter , May 29, 2019 at 23:50

Can I share this article I just found. I typed into google "is Mueller a phycopath?" and up popped this. I know next to nothing about the site or authour. Will explore a bit.
https://nationalvanguard.org/2018/12/robert-mueller-the-quintessential-psychopath/

Andrew Nichols , May 29, 2019 at 22:47

Failures to read, share or act upon important intelligence, which a FBI agent witness termed "criminal negligence" in later trial testimony, were therefore not fixed in a timely manner. (Some failures were never fixed at all.)

Deliberate failures

Tom , May 29, 2019 at 21:20

Isn't this the same Robert Mueller who prosecuted Lyndon LaRouche in the late eighties?

robert , June 19, 2017 at 20:43

Colleen's article or op ed here seems to be a straight forward, fact based account that the mainstream media would do well to study and consider [of course they generally wouldnt]. I wonder what all the links she has posted in support show?

I am glad to say I voted for Jill Stein last Nov. She has proven to be too decent for America, I suppose.

If Americans expected or wanted something better, why did 40% or so last Nov. sit back and refuse to vote, and those that did vote vote for obvious bums like Trump and Hilary? ?

Rob Roy , May 30, 2019 at 14:41

Thanks, robert, your letter says exactly what I would write. It's not that good people don't run for office, but the Powers That Be will not allow them to get air time and the MSM goes along with the exclusion, in fact, strongly supports it. War is the business of the USA and must not be stopped. Tulsi Gabbard is the one candidate that opposes war she will be shoved aside, destroyed by lies and ignored by the MSM. I have come to realize Americans are stupid politically and it's not going to stop. It's not just Americans people in Europe have good candidates, but, like here, those good candidates will not be allowed to win important positions. Corbyn comes to mind.

Vincent Marcantelli , June 9, 2017 at 17:15

Well, Mr. Comey, should be felling rather safe about now. Why, [you ask] well he is in GOOD hands, his old friend is going to be working the case. they both were Big Shots in the FBI and in the Justice Department. And, just like in any other "secret" unit or outfit, those who are or were in will ALL-WAYS be IN! Mr. Comey, came off as being VERY confident in his questioning, what is it that he is so confident about?
In a few weeks their could be a very Special hearing, and Mr. Comey will be on the block, but yet he is or was very comfortable during the questioning on the other day. I, do think, that this is going to be another "white wash" of the facts, and the Left, then walks away saying ."See, we knew that the GOP was doing this and or that". Mr. Comey and his old time friend need to be watched!

Vincent Marcantelli , June 9, 2017 at 17:01

Hate to say such a thing ..Both of these men, as [honest as they have been portrayed to be], getting them both together, one "against" the other, all that means is "look, were BROTHERS together, were both Good Guys, were both former FBI, were of that brotherhood". Folk's that's something, that is just about as thick as Blood, visa Water. If, someone is NOT watching, President Trump, will be in some serious crap. Would you, want to talk to Comey about ANYTHING, knowing that he is so political, and can "turn on a dime"?. Going back, to the other guy, again would you trust him knowing that he is and has been so close to Comey as it's being tolk and as it's coming out, be it EVER so slow, but as we go deeper into this mess, ALL of these "OUTSTANDING Federal Law Officers", their histories WILL, or at the very least START to show!"

rm , June 8, 2017 at 05:24

Mueller was 911 'speed of deceit' cover-up man. All he had to do was follow the forensics. A safe pair of hands,

Michael Morrissey , June 7, 2017 at 12:51

Mythical heroes and real criminals. I know that Coleen was much more the hero herself in trying to do her job at the FBI (see her Wiki) and now -- much more so -- as an activist and member (along with Ray McGovern et al.) of Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity, but

Well, I respect her a lot, and I would not like to offend her, but I would love to see how she would react in a detailed discussion of what is actually known about 9/11 (which for me is collected in the work of David Ray Griffin). Ditto for Ray McGovern, though I believe he is somewhat more receptive to what let's call for lack of a better term the "inside job" theory. (I hope we are past the notion that the govt's laughable conspiracy theory is in any respect less "speculative" than the solid presentation of facts and argumentation by David Griffin -- whose work is of course based on that of many others.)

It won't happen, I know. We will all go to our graves, and maybe our children and grandchildren will too, before the NYT or its equivalent says, "Yes, the US govt perpetrated 9/11 in order to scare the crap out of us and make us do everything we have done since."

Still, Coleen Rowley and Ray McGovern and a few more are way, way ahead of the NYT, their former employers, and I suppose the majority of the US population, and I am glad to be counted as among their supporters and admirers.

Richard Adams , June 7, 2017 at 12:20

Now this is what journalist should do. Find the facts and give it to the puplic.

Rodger Malcolm Mitchell , June 7, 2017 at 10:17

It takes only two things to keep people in chains: The ignorance of the oppressed and the treachery of their leaders. ( https://mythfighter.com/2017/06/05/here-we-go-again-more-privatization-scam/ )

Tomk , June 7, 2017 at 21:49

I think he will, I am not kidding . I really believe we are going to see some unbelievably nasty, nasty knives out full out war ., go back to that speech he gave on the Inauguration Day and HOW VERY INAPPROPRIATE it was viewed by all the "in" crowd sitting there, all the "in" group, all the Bohemian Grovers like Obama was (an attendee he was, already groomed to be President years before, so says Zachary King the ex-high Satanist priest who was there yearly and ran into him and was told his future .) and so many of the others CFR, Trilateral Commission etc. part of the Luciferian loony globalist creeps who truly believe they run the show and watch out if you are not on their "team" and don't tell me when you watched that -- that there was no doubt Trump knew he was throwing it right at them, he knows who and what they are–many on here do too from the comments I have seen –I just don't think Trump got the fact then of how well they have the corporate media totally in the bag and how even with a blatant lie like "Russia did it", that any idiot knows is bs, they will keep on going and going, I think that threw him a good bit but if that Inauguration speech is not enough of a signal that he will go to war here shortly–How about this? -- Secretary of State Tillerson in the last day or so saying he is going forward with making things better with Russia? If Trump was on board now believing he could make peace with the Deep Staters –No way that statement is made by Tillerson, that is a statement of "back at ya" No, Trump is a guy who "gets even" and he is not going to roll for them, he may head fake that way, but he doesn't roll that way, he gets even .and why? Just because LOL, because literally his Father growing up you to say "You're the King" and he is that guy lol this is going to go nuclear between him and the Obama/Bush/Deep Staters .He is still getting a feel for what is up 6 months in, I think he now basically has the picture that regardless of what he does they, the Deep State and the corporate media and the loony left that is clueless but buys into what they are fed, plan to skin him alive, pour salt on him, and hang him out as a trophy -- warning any future non-insider to get their message THIS IS WHAT WE DO TO OUTSIDERS! -- much like all future insiders got their message when JFK was shot down by them like a dog in the street and a "lone nut" was the laughable patsy, no one believes that err except the NYTs lol .Trump now knows there is NO MERCY coming his way, none nada, that this is bloodsport, why do you think he is yelling at Sessions? Sessions–what a horrible choice that was and Trump knows it now decided to recuse himself out of the war lol the "ethics" don't you know and brought in the guy as number 2 who put a hatchet in Trump's back bringing in the cleaner -- Mueller -- Mueller the professional hatchet man who had no problem screwing the country as to 911, "joined at the hip" to Comey the Deep State stooge, intends to seek out anything possible to gut and clean Trump for dinner (check out the "team" Mueller has in place–as if going after Al Capone in a case where everyone knows there is nothing "there" as to Russian "collusion" by Trump -- they are planning to roll Trump so incredibly badly–no way Trump doesn't know this now thus the screaming at Sessions who now, having rolled over with his "recusal" LOL , offers to resign like that will reverse the damage he's done .) and destroy him completely, taxes, investments, businesses–Trump's entire life will be microscoped for anything, ANYTHING, they can hang on him and every lying disgruntled ex-employee and adversary will be heard from, amplified, and leaked to the globalist corporate media that loathes him–all of which will have nothing to do with the "Russia" collusion lie that Podesta's 2015 emails show he came up with to attack Trump bc he was sanely suggesting that not having a war with Russia was a good idea .If you look at Trump's history, again, he IS NOT, definitely NOT, a nice guy and he has played in the nasty, nasty league of the big money chase almost all his life and he is, do not forget, a billionaire several times over who has his own private security force around him at all times and, despite what the media portrays, he has many, many allies .The country will never be the same again by the time this is "over"–if it ever really ends fireworks are coming beyond our imagination Trump is not going to limp off into the night and they are not going to let him even if he wanted to he is a cornered Wolverine get some popcorn this is going to be a wild ride .

Dave P. , June 8, 2017 at 12:31

Tomk: Well done, your analysis is breathtaking. I had flashes in my mind of some of these things coming. I hope this dirty business of Clinton/Bush/Obama also gets aired out in Public View, and the Whole World to look at. It blows my mind watching how "The Deep State" is going after Trump – for almost a year now – who was duly elected President by the U.S. Citizens. Their only vendetta against him is that he wanted to get along with Russia. A child can tell that this whole "Russia Gate" is utterly a Fabrication by the Ruling Establishment. Going on for a year now, these Evil Forces have turned the Country into almost a Lunatic Asylum.

Obama is all over hatching new plots. He was with Merkel, and a few days back seen with Justin Trudeau. What a useful tool of the Ruling Establishment Obama is. I bet Trump is watching all this. He is not that naive as some people think of him . It seems like, either he is going to submit and leave the scene with guarantees of not bothering him afterwards. or He is going to fight a fight not seen before in U.S. History. It is hard to tell how it will end.

Sleepless In Mars , June 7, 2017 at 07:31

"Let me come back again to the waking state. I have no choice but to consider it a phenomenon of interference. Not only does the mind display, in this state, a strange tendency to lose its bearings (as evidenced by the slips and mistakes the secrets of which are just beginning to be revealed to us), but, what is more, it does not appear that, when the mind is functioning normally, it really responds to anything but the suggestions which come to it from the depths of that dark night to which I commend it." Agent Breton

The White House wants to silence the media and press. They've lost their bearings. The OCB case is expanding. McPike won't let go. We won't be fooled again.

Pft , June 7, 2017 at 01:03

Baghdad Bob was more credible and believable than anyone in the MSM today. Its loony tunes. Maybe that Anthrax did the trick and scares them into submission.

Drew Hunkins , June 6, 2017 at 23:20

Beyond absurdity that an ostensible hustler who ran cover for years for Boston's ultra-violent Winter Hill Gang now has the authority to overturn the election of the president of the United States. (Albeit a president as flawed as he is, and NOT due to anything involving "RUSSIA!")

Tomk , June 6, 2017 at 21:51

Mueller the hatchet man for the Deep State (911 was ok by him it seems, no need to investigate .) has one purpose and that is to take out Trump as his favorable statements as to ending the new Cold War with Russia made him an enemy of those who believe they run the country and who look to profit incredibly by the money they can make from an "enemy" like Russia–much better than the "terrorism" one they created for us .Appointing Sessions AG was a really terrible mistake by Trump given his foreseeable recusal on the most important issue facing Trump (the phony "Russia did it" Trojan Horse to get a Mueller to go fishing to find, or create, ANYTHING to get rid of him .) Sessions is a loser all around igniting a new war on drugs – an incredibly unpopular issue Trump did not even run on and although the cries of "Racist" might be unfair Sessions said some stupid "jokes" that also should have sidelined him given all the enemies Trump knew he had coming in and what he needed at AG–an unimpeachable ally .Trump has to know what is up and it is not his nature to sit back and be harpooned, which is what his enemies do plan ., so this will be a fascinating year to see what he does to stop them from doing him Don't forget Trump is not a particularly nice guy and given he is getting some feel for what he is dealing with, and the incredible gravity of what he is up against, I guarantee we will see some moves coming in response to his enemies that we have never seen, or had anyone even consider, before .

Stephen J, , June 6, 2017 at 17:02

I believe this is what happens:

When gangsters are in control, endless wars slaughter millions of souls
And countries are destroyed by the hit men of the gangster ghouls
The unethical money changers finance their dirty depredations
And corporate cannibals profit from the bloody confrontations

Government by gangsters is now "the rule of law"
And "justice" is in the hands of criminals and outlaws
The language is twisted and debased
To suit these evil demons of the "human race"

Fancy titles and Houses of ill repute
Is where these villains consort and debut
Making "laws" to screw the masses
Yet, people continue to vote for these asses

If there really was "law and order"
These gangsters would be charged with genocide and murder
Instead these war criminals parade on the world stage
When they should be in a big enormous prison cage
[read more at link below]
http://graysinfo.blogspot.ca/2017/01/when-gangsters-are-in-control.html

backwardsevolution , June 6, 2017 at 17:03

Stephen J. – you are so right. Good job!

Stephen J, , June 6, 2017 at 20:09

Thanks backwardsevolution, I appreciate your comments.
Cheers Stephen J.

backwardsevolution , June 6, 2017 at 16:14

And President Woodrow Wilson being blackmailed to the tune of $40,000.00 over some love letters he had sent to a colleague's wife. Mr. Samuel Untermeyer agreed to pay the blackmail money in return for Wilson appointing Judge Louis Brandeis to the Supreme Court, which he did.

"Justice Brandeis volunteered his opinion to President Wilson that the sinking of the S.S. Sussex by a German submarine in the English Channel with the loss of lives of United States citizens justified the declaration of war against Germany by the United States. Relying to a great extent upon the legal opinion of Justice Brandeis, President Wilson addressed both houses of Congress on April 2, 1917. He appealed to Congress to declare war against Germany and they did on April 7, 1917."

Blackmail and threats still work. Comey always strikes me as being very matter-of-fact and cavalier in his answers, as if nothing could ever touch him. I mean, even I would have known not to let Clinton off. He acts as if a mafia-type organization has got his back and he doesn't have to worry, which is probably the case.

mike k , June 6, 2017 at 17:50

Yes. The chance of the lying, corrupt cowards "representing" us really calling Comey out on his record are nil. And Trump started a fight with the "intelligence" guys that he now knows he can't finish, so his lawyers will treat Comey very carefully. (In my fantasy Trump's lawyers tear Comey apart, and bring up all his rotten record, reducing him to a blubbering mess ..) Yes I have a fantasy life, but I try not to get it mixed up too much with our so-called reality.

backwardsevolution , June 6, 2017 at 20:22

mike k – an interesting thing about that Woodrow Wilson blackmailing (in my above post) is that these guys, with the blackmail knowledge in hand, bankrolled and helped Wilson get into the White House, and then they blackmailed him AFTER he got there. Of course, this way they ensured that they had their man all sewn up. They got him there, he owed them, and they had the damning information. They and they alone end up owning you.

Trump was bankrolled by a few powerful people. I just wonder if the same thing isn't happening with Trump, some old pictures. Whatever it is, I'm quite sure something happened.

Joe Tedesky , June 6, 2017 at 22:57

In our family we have a lawyer (now retired) who once worked under Peter Rodino during the Watergate Hearings. I'll never forget how when I asked my cousin if Nixon would serve time, she said never, because all the politicians who stood in judgement of Nixon had their own skeletons in the closet to hide. D.C. is a nest of degenerates, and charlatan fraudsters, but history proves that this is nothing original. The best 'we the people' can hope for, is when these masters and mistresses of ours decide it is time to feed us, because maybe they need our votes. Who knows? Yes blackmail will insure a trustworthy employee every time. John Lennon had it right, everybody's got something to hide, except for me and my monkey.

evelync , June 6, 2017 at 16:13

sorry, May 2002 not 2001 (above)

Sleepless In Mars , June 6, 2017 at 16:13

This isn't Seattle, but you can see it from here.

OCB is working the case with Bob Miller and Agent Vince.

The mind of the man who dreams is fully satisfied by what happens to him. The agonizing question of possibility is no longer pertinent. Kill, fly faster, love to your heart's content. And if you should die, are you not certain of re-awaking among the dead? Let yourself be carried along, events will not tolerate your interference. You are nameless. The ease of everything is priceless.

Take it easy. Company has the solution, which is inside the problem.

Democracy is The Tyranny of The Minority!

evelync , June 6, 2017 at 14:44

I am so grateful to Colleen Rowley who has been my heroine, too, since 2001 when she publicly felt, thank goodness, that she must speak out. Rowley stood up with courage, spunk, honor, strength of character, respect for the truth, fearless determination to stand alone, if necessary, in defiance of corruption and lies. Her loyalty was to truth, the constitution and the people of this country, most of whom toil under challenging circumstances, get sent to trumped up wars, get ripped off by big banks and after a lifetime of work are still struggling. Rowley gives us strength and hope that there's something better.

I suspect Colleen Rowley unlike some of the show boaters is herself a modest person and is just doing what's "necessary" and it's part of who she is.

Thank you, Colleen. I hate being confused by these people who lie to us and serve their own self interests instead of the public interest.
And how else would we know?
Some of them are pretty good at taking credit and are not as obviously horrific to us as, say, a Dick Cheney or a Donald Rumsfeld who seem to be more cartoonish characters than people.
Thank you.

Oz , June 6, 2017 at 14:39

It should also be noted that Mueller was a key figure during the 1980s in the government's campaign to frame and silence Lyndon LaRouche and his movement, a campaign which former AG Ramsey Clark described as the most appalling campaign of its sort that he had seen (and combatting such campaigns is his specialty.)

F. G. Sanford , June 6, 2017 at 14:00

Jedgar, as comedienne Lily Tomlin called him, was a career blackmailer, eavesdropper, extortionist and enabler of organized crime dynasties. It's not a coincidence that, in her comedic vehicle as a telephone operator, her routine suggested "listening in" as an extracurricular activity perhaps not disdained by Jedgar himself. Sure, a warrant was needed to use evidence gained by wiretapping in a court of law. But if the motive was blackmail, who needs a warrant? Apparently, this reality is lost on the American public. We should certainly realize that every phone conversation is now retrievable by electronic means. All the FISA Court mumbo jumbo and its purported "checks and balances" is a farce designed to create a veneer of legitimacy. What does anybody think Jedgar bothered getting a warrant to bug Martin Luther King – then subsequently revealed the playbacks and suggested that King commit suicide? Anyone who has spent even a modicum of time looking onto the fraudulent Warren Commission Report must realize that Jedgar was completely complicit. On the ballistics evidence alone, he could have blown the case wide open. At best, he was a criminal coconspirator in a massive coverup. At worst, he ranks among the most vile traitors in our nation's history. This, then, is the legacy of the organization to which the two coconspirators in the present article appertain. On November 22, 1963, our government was hijacked by "deep state" militarists, and a system of permanent war economy was installed. We have descended deeper into that abyss with each passing year. The elected government now serves as a mere facade. I'd suggest that doubters read Vince Salandria's book, especially the recently added chapter on Ruth and Michael Paine at the end. Check the contents – you'll find it. It's free online, and can be accessed from several internet addresses. Unless this sentinel crime is addressed, there is no hope for American democracy. We're done.
ratical . org/FalseMystery
ratical . org/falsemystery
ratical . org/FM
ratical . org/fm
Take out the spaces on either side of the dots to use the links. And, I'd advise, don't be fooled by "leaks" which bolster the "deep state" agenda, even if they arrest the leaker.

BannanaBoat , June 6, 2017 at 14:33

The Postal service states it photographs every piece of mail.

backwardsevolution , June 6, 2017 at 15:26

F.G. Sanford – thank you for the links. This is going to be excellent reading. That Vince Salandria is quite the guy:

"Only by the war production of World War II were we brought out of the great depression. It was not difficult to discern that we were artfully thrust into the war. I can recall that at the time of Pearl Harbor I was in the 8th grade of Vare Junior High School in Philadelphia. On December 8, 1941, in my math class, our teacher, Miss Wogan, suggested that rather than do our math we should discuss current events.

I went to the front of the classroom and informed my classmates that I could not accept as plausible President Roosevelt's assertion that the attack on Pearl Harbor was a surprise, sneak attack. I pointed out that all of us had known for months about the tension between the U.S. and Japan. I asked how, in light of those months of crisis and tautly strained relations between the two countries, could the battleships at Pearl Harbor have been lined up so closely together, presenting perfect targets for the Japanese? How could the planes I saw in the newspapers burning on our airfields have been positioned wing-tip to wing-tip?

I reminded the class that President Roosevelt had promised that he would not send our troops into a foreign war. I then offered my conclusion that inviting the Pearl Harbor attack was President Roosevelt's duplicitous device to eliminate the powerful neutralist sentiment in our country while thrusting us into the war."

Very smart for Grade 8!

backwardsevolution , June 6, 2017 at 15:41

"On November 23, 1963 I discussed the assassination with my then brother-in-law, Harold Feldman. I told him that we should keep our eyes focused on what if anything would happen to the suspected assassin that weekend. I said that if the suspect was killed during the weekend, then we would have to consider Oswald's role to be that of a possible intelligence agent and patsy. I told him if such happened, the assassination would have to be considered as the work of the very center of U.S. power. [ ]

When Oswald was served up on camera as disposable Dealey Plaza flotsam and jetsam and was killed by Jack Ruby I saw a subtle signal of a high level conspiracy. There is every reason to think that intelligence agencies, when they choose a killer to dispose of a patsy, make that choice by exercising the same degree of care that they employ in selecting the patsy. Their choice of Jack Ruby much later would – by providing a fall-back position for the government – serve the interests of the assassins. As the Warren Report would unravel, a deceased Ruby's past connections to the Mafia produced a false candidate for governmental apologists to designate as the power behind the killing.

Immediately following the assassination I began to collect news items about Lee Harvey Oswald. A pattern began to emerge. Oswald's alleged defection to the Soviets, his alleged Castro leanings as the sole member of a Fair Play for Cuba chapter in New Orleans, his posing with a rifle and a Trotskyist newspaper, his writings to the Communist Party USA, his study of the Russian language while in the Marine Corps, told me that he was not a genuine leftist, but rather was a U.S. intelligence agent."

Oswald was set up from the get-go. Poor kid, he didn't realize he was playing with fire.

The Kennedy assassination, 9/11, the other false flags, color revolutions, coups are all the work of those who possess a psychopathic mind.

Virginia , June 6, 2017 at 15:43

Remarkable! Good for you.

David Smith , June 6, 2017 at 17:34

B.E. as The Empire of Japan's operations plan called for invasion of The Philippines and Wake Island, both defended by United States forces, The United States would have been at war with Japan without a Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor. I know The White House was not privy to Japan's operation plan, but it was a certainty that any Japanese move would involve taking Malaya and the Dutch East Indies therefore it would be idiotic to assume they would leave The Philippines alone. In short, the idea that Roosevelt knew and let Pearl Harbor happen to get us into the war is a steaming pile of cowflap. If you are unconvinced by my argumentation and wish to debate further it would be my pleasure. Good luck, you're gonna need it.

BannanaBoat , June 7, 2017 at 14:31

According to an old edition of US History magazine, shortly after P.H., pilots at the USA airfeild near Manila spotted a squadron of Nippon fighterbombers circling their airfield, the Japanese failed to spot the airfield and the USA pilots began to scramble. But the pilots were ordered out of their planes, resulting in devastation during the Japanese fighterbombers' next pass.

BannanaBoat , June 8, 2017 at 16:41

The high command allowed the USA Pacific airfleet to be destroyed.

David Smith , June 9, 2017 at 13:37

Fallacy of Begging The Question. You continue to fail to address my argumentation.

David Smith , June 8, 2017 at 15:24

B.B. it is unclear what point you are trying to make, but it is clear it does not address my argumentation.

LJ , June 1, 2019 at 18:20

Classified Information and you don't have clearance and nobody else does either. What was that old quote? "When you make assumptions ..," Any opinion on this is as valid as anyone else's without any way to clarify the positions. Fact is we won the War and the Japanese never had a chance. They were suckered into the conflict , Now if you look at History the USA lied about every conflict we ever entered into from the Indian wars up to our 21 bases in Syria now.. We never told the truth once. Not in over 100 interventions in South America, not with 300,000 dead in the Philippines, Grenada, Vietnam, Iraq, Libya, Name one. Never . You believe what you want but I can tell you this , the best indicator of future performance is past performance. And, if you repeat the same experiment over and over and expect a different outcome you are not in search of truth but instead looking for an excuse to advance an alternate version of the truth. In other words rather than truth, one chooses to present a version of the truth thereby demonstrating a preconceived bias against the truth. An aversion to the truth. Peace baby.. Right On.

Brad Owen , June 7, 2017 at 11:58

I rather agree with EIR's description in:"Why FDR's explosive 1933-145 recovery worked". The trick was Glass-Steagall and the re-structuring of RFC into a Hamiltonian credit bank all to cut Wall Street outta the loop. To suggest that WWII ended the Depression is to put the cart before the horse. It was the massive generation of credit for re-industrializing and infrastructure, for use in CIVILIAN areas of life, then RE-TOOLED for war production, that ended the war. Minus the New Deal, we would have gone into war grossly unable to equip ourselves for the task. FDR also new the LONG-RANGE threat of the Fascist-NAZI movements as being the outcome of longtime Synarchist plans that preceded and succeeds WWII, obtained from O.S.S. and military and French intelligence (see Synarchy against America by Anton Chaitkin, from EIR). Its' VITALLY important to realize that China's New Silk Road is exactly like FDR's New Deal and can succeed in developing the World, without war or Western Bankers' speculation . The WWII was partly meant to DERAIL FDR's New Deal demonstration of spectacular development without the need for WAR or Wall Street SPECULATION. this is THE SAME fear the DEEP STATE of the Trans-Atlantic Community has of Russia, China and their New Silk Road policy.

curious , June 3, 2019 at 04:17

B.E.
Yes, good instincts for an 8th grader. Just some oddities to add to your analysis, especially the "sneak attack" version.
For those who have a critical thinking gene, I'll add this: Japan was, and still is an island. Shipping and fuel was very well know even back then. It wasn't too difficult to have intel regarding the amount of steel they were importing, nor fuel. They didn't grow these large ships and multiple planes in the rice fields.
Many people in the US still don't realize Hawaii was not a US State. So was this an attack on the US, or just some US assets? Given the fact that there were many spotters on most of the islands because of Japanese activity across the South Pacific, we were never clueless on their movements, nor surprised. Hiding aircraft carriers, even to a man with only a 4x binoculars, is extremely difficult. I'll leave that bit of research as to the amount of island spotters the US had for you to read at your leisure. I think it very odd that our newest and bestest aircraft carriers and battleships were not ported in Pearl. This speaks volumes as to our advance knowledge of the Pearl Harbor attack.

Abe , June 6, 2017 at 17:03

"Yes, it does sound rather un-American, doesn't it?"
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G0l9fE2RAj8
[Video minutes 3:15-6:25]

Alexandr , June 6, 2017 at 13:38

Aaaghh! Damn. Hello everybody! Guys I am trying hard. Almost finished synchronising the subtitles for "Evening with Vladimir Soloviev" TV-show, one of the series. I could have upload it with the subs only, but I do want to make DUB for You and everyone else. So, I need a little more time. Unfortunately this series is outdated enough already. However I wouldn't say that there is much changes happened during this period. And also I wanted to say About Megyn Kelly's FAKE NBC NEWS interview. I guess all of You have seen it already and read YouTube's comments that it was CUTTED hard! Huh. Another evidence of the Western fake news. Just now I have watched 60Minutes TV-show and this was a theme of the relay. Anyway. I look forward to upload the material ASAP. Although I am not sure You need this.

Jessejean , June 6, 2017 at 13:34

O god I love this woman. Smart brave educated articulate and patriotic–how could she possibly be heard from in the Amerikan media? I watched Joy Reid disgrace herself last night on MSNBC in place of Rachel disgracing herself. It just breaks my heart. But we still have Consortium News, Robert Parry and Colleen " the hammer" ;-) Rowley. Now, could someone please explain what's really going on with Ms Reality? She seems like a cat's paw, not a whistle blower.

backwardsevolution , June 6, 2017 at 14:18

Jessejean – I agree wholeheartedly. Coleen Rowley is a very brave lady. Thank you, Ms. Rowley for a great article and for not being afraid to tell the truth.

mike k , June 6, 2017 at 13:16

Until one understands that the US government is a criminal enterprise, and that everyone involved in it is a criminal, with extremely few exceptions – you will not understand what goes on there. The same holds true for the main stream media, these are criminal, lying propaganda outlets for the rich and powerful who own them. Also the US Military is a vicious criminal enterprise pure and simple.

If you are inclined to cut any of these actors any slack whatever, and forget who they really are, you will simply become a victim of their lies and criminal activities. Regardless of the unceasing barrage of positive images and ideas we are soaked in from childhood, we need to constantly remind ourselves of who these evil people really are, and the horrendous crimes they are responsible for. The idea that James Comey, the head of the secret police is some kind of role model is outrageous. This man deserves to be imprisoned for the rest of his life.

Dave P. , June 6, 2017 at 15:50

The irony of all this is that America could be a great positive force for good and beneficial change on the planet. It's location, between two great Oceans, it's physical beauty, and it's resources – America has it all. There is nothing like America on this Planet. [It makes me feel sad about American Indians, who lost it all during the last three or four centuries]. And now, for the last five decades or so, all the best and the brightest from top schools in India, now China, Eastern Europe, and elsewhere (and Iran too !) come to U.S. Universities, and work here. One of the major engines of our high tech sector boom – and leadership in the World – has been due to this foreign born talent. And this talent has contributed a lot in other sectors as well.

And from all what I have read, after the collapse of Communism, the World was and is willing to accept American leadership. If you watch Putin's speeches at Valdai International Discussion Club, he acknowledges America's leadership, but not complete subservience to U.S.

Would big countries and ancient civilizations like China and India, or big countries like Brazil, South Africa agree to be completely subservient to U.S.? Should these countries (and the other countries of the World) become U.S.'s vassal states. It is preposterous to think of it. What happened to this idea of Freedom, which is drilled into masses here 24/7 by the Media and the Ruling Establishment. As we want to live free, don't these countries would like to live free.

And we are waging wars on the Nations to bring freedom and democracy – and American values. What a hypocrisy?

And we are discussing about Comey and Mueller here! It is hard to comprehend to what lower depths the country has sunk to.
Trump was not wrong when he was saying during the campaign that the whole place ( Washington) is a swamp. The country was ready for a Populist. Unfortunately, Trump was not the right one.

I do not have much hope that the upper echelons in this country will learn some wisdom to change their course.

backwardsevolution , June 6, 2017 at 17:18

Dave P. – good points. I don't think Trump was the "perfect" one, but I think he could have been the "right" one, had they laid off him, but he's had everything but the kitchen sink thrown at him (the pussy hats, the Berkeley rioters, the media, the Democrats, his own Republican Party). The Deep State has gone after him like crazy because they're fighting for their very survival, and Trump was going to end it.

I think he WOULD have ended the wars, cut back on NATO, brought affordable healthcare, enforced the border laws (without which you don't have a country, at least not for long), brought jobs back from China/Asia, rebuilt infrastructure, and protected the citizens.

It appears people don't want that. Go figure.

Dave P. , June 6, 2017 at 17:40

backwardsevolution, I agree with you. I think Trump meant to do all these things you mentioned. What I meant to say was that, he did not have any clue of what was to come. Trump does not have any communication skills like Obama, and Clinton, and is not well read or any thing like that. And I think that they – the Deep State – have a very thick dossier on his business deals, and all that. I sometimes feel sorry for him – the guy is caught in the nest of scorpions. When I watch him on TV sometimes, he seems like he is scared, and will do any thing they will ask him to do.

backwardsevolution , June 6, 2017 at 19:41

Dave P. – re your "nest of scorpions" comment. Yes, I agree that Trump had no idea what he'd be stepping into. We probably don't know the half of it. Could be death threats against himself (or maybe his family) or blackmail. Something happened because all of a sudden Trump and Tillerson both changed, seemingly overnight, and you're right, Trump has a scared look in his eyes.

If a thick-skinned braggart like Trump can't go up against these guys, then who can?

Dave P. , June 6, 2017 at 16:19

backwardsevolution: Exactly, "Hell is empty and all the devils are here". You have described Washington – Nation's Capitol – of Today – all the devils are here.

Coleen Rowley , May 31, 2019 at 08:36

Yes, that's what I think too! I will share some of your comments about the devils and the "nest of scorpions" on my FB page.

derek leisure , June 6, 2017 at 18:15

"Hell is empty and all the devils are here." that is much more true than can be seen ./wink

Stephen J, , June 6, 2017 at 12:58

I believe the "system" is totally corrupted. We are prisoners in a so-called "democracy."

The Prisoners of the System
By Stephen J. Gray

The prisoners of the system thought they were free
After all, they lived in a "democracy?"
Every few years they were allowed to vote
Then they got punished by the winning lot

Oh well, at least the masses are allowed to go on holiday
At the airports they are patted down and groped in the name of security
Still, their governments were keeping them all safe
As they spy on them and all the human race.

Big Brother and Big Sister are now in charge
And Orwell's "1984" is now here and at large
Computers are monitored and cell phones too
Fridges are bugged and smart meters knew

[read more at link below]
http://graysinfo.blogspot.ca/2012/05/prisoners-of-system.html

mike k , June 6, 2017 at 17:16

Good one Stephen. Keep 'em coming ..

Bill Bodden , June 6, 2017 at 12:52

I will very likely go to my grave with the strong suspicion that the alleged Christmas Bomber (2010) in Portland, Oregon was a case of entrapment. Assuming that kid really did have intentions of setting off a bomb, the FBI agents should have educated him as to why setting off a bomb as a Christmas tree lighting ceremony was a very bad thing to do instead of going through some ritual of simulations. Of course, the FBI agents claim they gave him chances to back out, but I suspect he was like most teenagers who didn't want to be considered as "chicken." – http://theweek.com/articles/488966/portland-bomb-plot-entrapment

backwardsevolution , June 6, 2017 at 13:41

Bill – using entrapment in order to move public opinion in a certain direction, steer the herd, influence their thinking, allowing them then to engage in what they want carried out. Sickening. Heat coming down on Israel a little too much? Just create an incident, elicit sympathy, and the whole thing blows over.

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/04/29/opinion/sunday/terrorist-plots-helped-along-by-the-fbi.html

Bob Van Noy , June 6, 2017 at 12:51

Thank you Coleen Rowley especially for clearing up for me The Comey/Mueller Myth. I've bookmarked your article for its invaluable links and truth For many of us you will remain forever a hero

backwardsevolution , June 6, 2017 at 13:34

Bob Van Noy – totally agree. Bookmark that Mike Whitney article as well that D5-5 posted above, especially when he says that Rod Rosenstein would not have acted alone on this special prosecutor appointment, and also for what he perceives will be Trump's eventual outcome. As in toast.

Bill Bodden , June 6, 2017 at 12:26

To paraphrase Shakespeare: Age has not withered Coleen Rowley nor custom faded her infinite courage.

Cal , June 6, 2017 at 22:52

Ditto .

Joe Tedesky , June 6, 2017 at 12:26

Thank you Coleen Rowley for jogging my memory in regard to Mueller and Comey. I know you have heard this before, but until the day comes when I will turn on the MSM news, and see you Ms Rowley, and such people like Ray McGovern, Paul Craig Roberts, and of course Robert Parry, then it's the same old song sung by the same old choir. Thank you for the reminder. Joe

Bill Bodden , June 6, 2017 at 12:22

Beyond ignoring politicized intelligence, Mueller bent to other political pressures.

Bending to political and other pressures is one of the rules for "success" in Washington and Wall Street. There must be very few people who have made it to the upper echelons butting heads with the oligarchs running the show. Lewis Lapham, a national treasure of an essayist and author, frequently skewered the "rules of success" and those who played by them.

D5-5 , June 6, 2017 at 12:13

Mike Whitney chimes in here:

http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/47117.htm

[Jan 04, 2020] Why the US Seeks to Hem in Russia, China and Iran by Patrick Lawrence

Sep 13, 2018 | consortiumnews.com

America's three principal adversaries signify the shape of the world to come: a post-Western world of coexistence. But neoliberal and neocon ideology is unable to to accept global pluralism and multipolarity, argues Patrick Lawrence.


Special to Consortium News

The Trump administration has brought U.S. foreign policy to the brink of crisis, if it has not already tipped into one. There is little room to argue otherwise. In Asia, Europe, and the Middle East, and in Washington's ever-fraught relations with Russia, U.S. strategy, as reviewed in my previous column , amounts to little more than spoiling the efforts of others to negotiate peaceful solutions to war and dangerous standoffs in the interests of an orderly world.

The bitter reality is that U.S. foreign policy has no definable objective other than blocking the initiatives of others because they stand in the way of the further expansion of U.S. global interests. This impoverished strategy reflects Washington's refusal to accept the passing of its relatively brief post–Cold War moment of unipolar power.

There is an error all too common in American public opinion. Personalizing Washington's regression into the role of spoiler by assigning all blame to one man, now Donald Trump, deprives one of deeper understanding. This mistake was made during the steady attack on civil liberties after the Sept. 11 tragedies and then during the 2003 invasion of Iraq: namely that it was all George W. Bush's fault. It was not so simple then and is not now. The crisis of U.S. foreign policy -- a series of radical missteps -- are systemic. Having little to do with personalities, they pass from one administration to the next with little variance other than at the margins.

Let us bring some history to this question of America as spoiler. What is the origin of this undignified and isolating approach to global affairs?

It began with that hubristic triumphalism so evident in the decade after the Cold War's end. What ensued had various names.

There was the "end of history" thesis. American liberalism was humanity's highest achievement, and nothing would supersede it.

There was also the "Washington consensus." The world was in agreement that free-market capitalism and unfettered financial markets would see the entire planet to prosperity. The consensus never extended far beyond the Potomac, but this sort of detail mattered little at the time.

The neoliberal economic crusade accompanied by neoconservative politics had its intellectual ballast, and off went its true-believing warriors around the world.

Happier days with Russia. (Eric Draper)

Failures ensued. Iraq post–2003 is among the more obvious. Nobody ever planted democracy or built free markets in Baghdad. Then came the "color revolutions," which resulted in the destabilization of large swathes of the former Soviet Union's borderlands. The 2008 financial crash followed.

I was in Hong Kong at the time and recall thinking, "This is not just Lehman Brothers. An economic model is headed into Chapter 11." One would have thought a fundamental rethink in Washington might have followed these events. There has never been one.

The orthodoxy today remains what it was when it formed in the 1990s: The neoliberal crusade must proceed. Our market-driven, "rules-based" order is still advanced as the only way out of our planet's impasses.

A Strategic and Military Turn

Midway through the first Obama administration, a crucial turn began. What had been an assertion of financial and economic power, albeit coercive in many instances, particularly with the invasions of Iraq and Afghanistan, took on further strategic and military dimensions. The NATO bombing campaign in Libya, ostensibly a humanitarian mission, became a regime-change operation -- despite Washington's promises otherwise. Obama's "pivot to Asia" turned out to be a neo-containment policy toward China. The "reset" with Russia, declared after Obama appointed Hillary Clinton secretary of state, flopped and turned into the virulent animosity we now live with daily. The U.S.-cultivated coup in Kiev in 2014 was a major declaration of drastic turn in policy towards Moscow. So was the decision, taken in 2012 at the latest , to back the radical jihadists who were turning civil unrest in Syria into a campaign to topple the Assad government in favor of another Islamist regime.

Spoilage as a poor excuse for a foreign policy had made its first appearances.

I count 2013 to 2015 as key years. At the start of this period, China began developing what it now calls its Belt and Road Initiative -- its hugely ambitious plan to stitch together the Eurasian landmass, Shanghai to Lisbon. Moscow favored this undertaking, not least because of the key role Russia had to play and because it fit well with President Vladimir Putin's Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU), launched in 2014.

Belt and Road Initiative. (Lommes / CC BY-SA 4.0)

In 2015, the last of the three years I just noted, Russia intervened militarily and diplomatically in the Syria conflict, in part to protect its southwest from Islamist extremism and in part to pull the Middle East back from the near-anarchy then threatening it as well as Russia and the West.

Meanwhile, Washington had cast China as an adversary and committed itself -- as it apparently remains -- to regime change in Syria. Three months prior to the treaty that established the EAEU, the Americans helped turn another case of civil unrest into a regime change -- this time backing not jihadists in Syria but the crypto-Nazi militias in Ukraine on which the government now in power still depends.

That is how we got the U.S.-as-spoiler foreign policy we now have.

If there is a president to blame -- and again, I see little point in this line of argument -- it would have to be Barack Obama. To a certain extent, Obama was a creature of those around him, as he acknowledged in his interview with Jeffrey Goldberg in The Atlantic toward the end of his second term. From that "Anonymous" opinion piece published in The New York Times on Sept. 5, we know Trump is too, to a greater extent than Obama may have feared in his worst moments.

The crucial question is why. Why do U.S. policy cliques find themselves bereft of imaginative thinking in the face of an evolving world order? Why has there been not a single original policy initiative since the years I single out, with the exception of the now-abandoned 2015 accord governing Iran's nuclear programs? "Right now, our job is to create quagmires until we get what we want," an administration official told The Washington Post 's David Ignatius in August.

Can you think of a blunter confession of intellectual bankruptcy? I can't.

Global 'Equals' Like Us?

There is a longstanding explanation for this paralysis. Seven decades of global hegemony, the Cold War notwithstanding, left the State Department with little to think about other than the simplicities of East-West tension. Those planning and executing American diplomacy lost all facility for imaginative thinking because there was no need of it. This holds true, in my view, but there is more to our specific moment than mere sclerosis within the policy cliques.

As I have argued numerous times elsewhere, parity between East and West is a 21st century imperative. From Woodrow Wilson to the post-World War II settlement, an equality among all nations was in theory what the U.S. considered essential to global order.

Now that this is upon us, however, Washington cannot accept it. It did not count on non-Western nations achieving a measure of prosperity and influence until they were "just like us," as the once famous phrase had it. And it has not turned out that way.

Can't we all just get along? (Carlos3653 / Wikimedia)

Think of Russia, China, and Iran, the three nations now designated America's principal adversaries. Each one is fated to become (if it is not already) a world or regional power and a key to stability -- Russia and China on a global scale, Iran in the Middle East. But each stands resolutely -- and this is not to say with hostile intent -- outside the Western-led order. They have different histories, traditions, cultures, and political cultures. And they are determined to preserve them.

They signify the shape of the world to come -- a post-Western world in which the Atlantic alliance must coexist with rising powers outside its orbit. Together, then, they signify precisely what the U.S. cannot countenance. And if there is one attribute of neoliberal and neoconservative ideology that stands out among all others, it is its complete inability to accept difference or deviation if it threatens its interests.

This is the logic of spoilage as a substitute for foreign policy. Among its many consequences are countless lost opportunities for global stability.

Patrick Lawrence, a correspondent abroad for many years, chiefly for the International Herald Tribune, is a columnist, essayist, author, and lecturer. His most recent book is Time No Longer: Americans After the American Century (Yale). Follow him @thefloutist. His web site is www.patricklawrence.us. Support his work via www.patreon.com/thefloutist .

If you valued this original article, please consider making a donation to Consortium News so we can bring you more stories like this one.

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Tags: Barack Obama China Donald Trump George W. Bush Iran Neoliberlism Patrick Lawrence Russia Spoiler United States Vladimir Putin

Post navigation ← Solving Italy's Immigration Crisis Consortium News Unveils New Logo → 78 comments for "Why the U.S. Seeks to Hem in Russia, China and Iran"

R Davis , September 20, 2018 at 04:21

adversary: – one's opponent in a contest, conflict or dispute.

& I ask this
"Is it really thus"
"Why must it be thus"

How can China be an adversary of the USA when all their manufactured goods come from China.
example:- a water distiller – manufactured in & purchased from China retails for AU$70 odd.
The very same item manufactured in China – but purchased from the USA retails for US$260 plus.
China should be a most welcome guest at the dinner table of the USA.

R Davis , September 20, 2018 at 04:28

While i'm here – where did China get all their surveillance equipment from – the place is locked down tighter than a chicken coop plagued by foxes.

relevant article – CRAZZ FILES – Bone Chilling Footage Shows the Horrific Tyranny Google is Now Secretly Fostering in China.

In my opinion Google is not trying to keep information out of China – BUT – preventing information from get out of China – to the world at large.
A lockdown as severe as this – tells us that there is something seriously bad happening inside China.
Maybe even a mass genocide

Bob Arnold , September 16, 2018 at 09:48

This analysis is correct as far as it goes. However, what is lacking is an analysis of the lunatic monetary ideology that has looted the physical economy of the U.S. by putting enormous fake profits of speculative instruments in the hands of our "elites." It is the post industrial, information age economy which must be transformed by very painful loss of control by these putative elites if the world is to survive their insane geopolitics. What the Chinese are doing by rapid build up of worldwide infrastructure needs to be replicated here. The only way of doing so is first by ending the Wall St./City of London derivatives nightmare and then by issuing trillions of credits needed for that very purpose.

Lee Anderson , September 16, 2018 at 15:16

Agreed, you speak wisely of the root of the problem. Those who create and distribute money make ALL the rules and dominate the political and media landscape.

Freedomlover , September 17, 2018 at 15:20

Hit the nail on the head.
Thanks

bevin , September 14, 2018 at 18:32

This really is an excellent analysis. I would highlight the following point:
"There is a longstanding explanation for this paralysis. Seven decades of global hegemony, the Cold War notwithstanding, left the State Department with little to think about other than the simplicities of East-West tension. Those planning and executing American diplomacy lost all facility for imaginative thinking because there was no need of it. This holds true, in my view, but there is more to our specific moment than mere sclerosis within the policy cliques "

Conformism and its consequences, probably derived in part from Puritanism and further cemented by the alternating racisms of anti-indigenous and anti black attitudes- the history of the lynch mob and various wars against the poor which ended up in the anti-communist frenzies of the day before yesterday constitute the backbone of American history- is the disease which afflicts Washington.

Don Bacon , September 14, 2018 at 18:03

You don't mention corruption and profiteering, which go hand-in-hand with American Exceptionalism and the National Security State (NSS) formed in 1947. The leader of the world which is also an NSS requires enemies, so the National Security Strategy designates enemies, a few of them in an Axis of Evil. Arming to fight them and dreaming up other reasons to go to war, including a war on terror of all things, bring the desired vast expenditures, trillions of dollars, which translate to vast profits to those involved.

This focus on war has its roots in the Christian bible and in a sense of manifest destiny that has occupied Americans since before they were Americans, and the real Americans had to be exterminated. It certainly (as stated) can't be blamed on certain individuals, it's predominate and nearly universal. How many Americans were against the assault by the Coalition of the Willing upon Iraq? Very few.

Homer Jay , September 14, 2018 at 22:09

"How many Americans were against the assault by the Coalition of the Willing upon Iraq? Very few."

Are you kidding me? Here is a list of polls of the American public regarding the Iraq War 2003-2007;

https://www.politifact.com/iraq-war-polls/

Even in the lead up the war when the public was force fed a diet comprised entirely of State Dept. lies about WMDs by a sycophantic media, there was still a significant 25-40 percent of the public who opposed the war. You clearly are not American or you would remember the vocal minority which filled the streets of big cities across this country. And again the consent was as Chomsky says "manufactured." And it took only 1 year of the war for the majority of the public to be against it. By 2007 60-70% of the public opposed the war.

Judging from your name you come from a country whose government was part of that coalition of the willing. So should we assume that "very few" of your fellow country men and women were against that absolute horror show that is the Iraq war?

Don Bacon , September 14, 2018 at 23:05

You failed to address my major point, and instead picked on something you're wrong on.

Iraq war poll –Pew Research
http://assets.pewresearch.org/wp-content/uploads/sites/12/old-assets/publications/770-1.gif

PS: bevin made approximately the same point later (w/o the financial factor).
"Conformism and its consequences, probably derived in part from Puritanism and further cemented by the alternating racisms of anti-indigenous and anti black attitudes- the history of the lynch mob and various wars against the poor which ended up in the anti-communist frenzies of the day before yesterday constitute the backbone of American history- is the disease which afflicts Washington."

Homer Jay , September 17, 2018 at 14:47

Respectfully, Your data backs up my comment/data. And to your larger point, again we must be careful when describing such attitudes as "American", a country with a wide range of attitudes/ beliefs. To suggest we are all just a war mongering mob is bigoted. You probably will say that's defensive but it's also right. And making the recklessly inaccurate claim that "very few" Americans opposed the war in Iraq, without taking into account the disinformation campaign that played into the initial consent, needs to corrected more than once.

Sari , September 14, 2018 at 15:15

I just encountered (via Voltairenet) "The Pentagon's New Map," a book written by Thomas Barnett, an assistant once to Admiral Arthur K. Cebrowski (now deceased). Barnett wrote an earlier article for the March 2003 Esquire entitled "Why the Pentagon Changes Its Map: And Why We'll Keep Going to War" ( https://www.esquire.com/news-politics/a1546/thomas-barnett-iraq-war-primer/ ) describing their ideas which are introduced thusly:

"Since the end of the cold war, the United States has been trying to come up with an operating theory of the world -- and a military strategy to accompany it. Now there's a leading contender. It involves identifying the problem parts of the world and aggressively shrinking them. Since September 11, 2001, the author, a professor of warfare analysis at the U.S. Naval War College, has been advising the Office of the Secretary of Defense and giving this briefing continually at the Pentagon and in the intelligence community. Now, he gives it to you."

His basic premise: "Show me where globalization is thick with network connectivity, financial transactions, liberal media flows, and collective security, and I will show you regions featuring stable governments, rising standards of living, and more deaths by suicide than murder. These parts of the world I call the Functioning Core, or Core. But show me where globalization is thinning or just plain absent, and I will show you regions plagued by politically repressive regimes, widespread poverty and disease, routine mass murder, and -- most important -- the chronic conflicts that incubate the next generation of global terrorists. These parts of the world I call the Non-Integrating Gap, or Gap."

One more quote gives you the "Monarch Notes" edition: "Think about it: Bin Laden and Al Qaeda are pure products of the Gap -- in effect, its most violent feedback to the Core. They tell us how we are doing in exporting security to these lawless areas (not very well) and which states they would like to take "offline" from globalization and return to some seventh-century definition of the good life (any Gap state with a sizable Muslim population, especially Saudi Arabia).

If you take this message from Osama and combine it with our military-intervention record of the last decade, a simple security rule set emerges: A country's potential to warrant a U.S. military response is inversely related to its globalization connectivity."

Of course, we all recognize how much prevarication currently exists in "implementing" this strategy, but I would suggest that, very likely, the Pentagon is, indeed, following this "New Map." And, yes, this "map" shows us why the U.S. has been continually at war since 9/11 and subbornly refuses to leave Syria, Iraq, and the Middle East with their apparent justification being "Might Makes Right." Thierry Mayssen (Voltairenet) aptly describes the Gap states as "reservoirs of resources" driven into perpetual war, destabilization, and chaos by a preeminently overwhelming hegemonic U.S. military.

I had to laugh. One of Barnett's reasons in promulgating this new "map" involves the continued stability of the Core; however, what do we see today? Huge waves of immigration greatly destabilizing every aspect of Europe and chaos and destabilization flooding the U.S. via false/contrived polarization in every sphere of life. BUT! The military has "a Map!"

Psssstt!! Who's "creating" the Gap? Who has funded and armed Al Qaeda/DAESH/ISIS in the Middle East? We'll need GPS to keep up with the Pentagon's "new map!"

Archie1954 , September 14, 2018 at 14:39

I have often wondered why the US was unable to accept the position of first among equals. Why does it have to rule the World? I know it believes that its economic and political systems are the best on the planet, but surely all other nations should be able to decide for themselves, what systems they will accept and live under? Who gave the US the right to make those decisions for everyone else? The US was more than willing to kill 20 million people either directly or indirectly since the end of WWII to make its will sovereign in all nations of the World!

Bob Van Noy , September 14, 2018 at 21:54

Archie 1954, because 911 was never adequately investigated, our government was inappropriately allowed to act in the so-called public interest in completely inappropriate ways; so that in order for the Country to set things right, those decisions which were made quietly, with little public discussion, would have to be exposed and the illegalities addressed. But, as I'm sure you know, there are myriad other big government failures also left unexamined, so where to begin?

That is why I invariably raise JFK's Assassination as a logical starting point. If a truly independent commission would fix the blame, we could move on from there. Sam F., on this forum, has mentioned a formal legal undertaking many times on this site, but now is the time to begin the discussion for a formal Truth And Reconciliation Commission in America Let's figure out how to begin.

So,"Who gave the US the right to make those decisions for everyone else?", certainly not The People

Lee Anderson , September 16, 2018 at 15:28

Jill Stein said if elected she would boycott all countries guilty of human rights abuses and she included Saudi Arabia and Israel. She also said she would form a 9/11 commission comprised of those independent people and groups currently reporting on this travesty. Meanwhile we have the self-proclaimed "progressive" talk show hosts such as Thom Hartmann, defending the PNAC NEOCONS while making Stein persona non grata and throwing real progressive candidates under the bus.

The PNAC NEOCONS understood the importance of creating a galvanizing, catastrophic and catalyzing event but the alternative media is afraid to call a spade a spade, something about the truth being too risky to ones career, I assume.

See much more at youtopia.guru

Bob Van Noy , September 17, 2018 at 09:19

Lee Anderson thank you for your response, I agree and I appreciate the link suggestion, I'm impressed and will read more

didi , September 14, 2018 at 13:49

It is always the unintended consequences. Hence I disagree with some of your views. A president who takes actions which trigger unintended/unexpected consequences can be held accountable for such consequences even if he/she could not avert the consequences. It is also often true that corrections are possible when such consequences begin to appear. Given our system which makes only presidents powerful to act on war, peace, and foreign relationships there is no escaping that they must be blamed only.

Jessika , September 14, 2018 at 13:36

A very good article. Spoiler and bully describe US foreign policy, and foreign policy is in the driver's seat while domestic policy takes the pickings, hardly anything left for the hollowed-out society where people live paycheck to paycheck, homelessness and other assorted ills of a failing society continue to rise while oligarchs and the MIC rule the neofeudal/futile system. When are we going to make that connection of the wasteful expenditure on military adventurism and the problem of poverty in the US? The Pentagon consistently calls the shots, yet we consistently hear about unaccounted expenditures by the Pentagon, losing amounts in the trillions, and never do they get audited.

nondimenticare , September 14, 2018 at 12:18

I certainly agree that the policy is bereft, but not for all of the same reasons. There is the positing of a turnaround as a basis for the current spoiler role: "What had been an assertion of financial and economic power, albeit coercive in many instances, particularly with the invasions of Iraq and Afghanistan, took on further strategic and military dimensions."

To substantiate this "crucial turn," Lawrence makes the unwarranted assumption that the goal post Soviet Union was simply worldwide free-market capitalism, not global domination: "Failures ensued. Iraq post–2003 is among the more obvious. Nobody ever planted democracy or built free markets in Baghdad"; and the later statement that the US wanted the countries it invaded to be "Just like us."

Though he doesn't mention (ignores) US meddling in Russia after the collapse of the USSR, I presume from its absence that he attributes that, too, to the expansion of capital. Indeed, it was that, but with the more malevolent goal of control. "Just like us" is the usual "progressive" explanation for failures. "Controlled by us" was more like it, if we face the history of the country squarely.

That is the blindness of intent that has led to the spoiler role.

Unfettered Fire , September 14, 2018 at 11:15

Is it really so wise to be speaking in terms of nationhood after we've undergone 50 years of Kochian/libertarian dismantlement of the nation-state in favor of bank and transnational governance? Remember the words of Zbigniew Brzezinski:

"The "nation-state" as a fundamental unit of man's organized life has ceased to be the principal creative force: International banks and multinational corporations are acting and planning in terms that are far in advance of the political concepts of the nation-state." ~ Zbigniew Brzezinski, Between Two Ages, 1970

"Make no mistake, what we are seeing in geopolitics today is indeed a magic show. The false East/West paradigm is as powerful if not more powerful than the false Left/Right paradigm. For some reason, the human mind is more comfortable believing in the ideas of division and chaos, and it often turns its nose up indignantly at the notion of "conspiracy." But conspiracies and conspirators can be demonstrated as a fact of history. Organization among elitists is predictable.

Globalists themselves are drawn together by an ideology. They have no common nation, they have no common political orientation, they have no common cultural background or religion, they herald from the East just as they herald from the West. They have no true loyalty to any mainstream cause or social movement.

What do they have in common? They seem to exhibit many of the traits of high level narcissistic sociopaths, who make up a very small percentage of the human population. These people are predators, or to be more specific, they are parasites. They see themselves as naturally superior to others, but they often work together if there is the promise of mutual benefit."

http://www.alt-market.com/articles/3504-in-the-new-qmultipolar-worldq-the-globalists-still-control-all-the-players

Jeff Davis , September 14, 2018 at 11:46

Your comment is astute and valuable, and consequently deserves to be signed with your real name, so that you can be identified as someone worth listening to.

Don Bacon , September 14, 2018 at 17:44

Screen names don't matter, content does.

OlyaPola , September 15, 2018 at 11:34

"Screen names don't matter, content does."

Apparently not for some where attribution is sought and the illusion of trust the source trust the content is held, leading to curveballs mirroring expectations whilst serving the purposes of others.

JuanPZenter , September 17, 2018 at 07:31

Why? The better to dox him with?

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

OlyaPola , September 14, 2018 at 13:35

""The "nation-state" as a fundamental unit of man's organized life has ceased to be the principal creative force: International banks and multinational corporations are acting and planning in terms that are far in advance of the political concepts of the nation-state." ~ Zbigniew Brzezinski, Between Two Ages, 1970"

The date of publication is of significance as was Mr. Paul Craig Roberts' Alienation in the Soviet economy of 1971, as was Mr. Andrei Amalrik's "Can the Soviet Union last until 1984 published in 1969.

The period 1968 – 1973 was one significant trajectory in the half-life of "we the people hold these truths to be self-evident" which underpinned and maintained the "nation state" misrepresented/branded as the "United States of America" through a change in the assays of the amalga mutual benefit/hold these truths to be self-evident.

The last hurrah of the "red experts" – Mr. Brezhnev and associates – despite analyses/forecasts from various agencies agreed, detente based on spheres of influence facilitating through interaction/complicity various fiats including but not restricted to fiat currency, fiat economy, fiat politics all dependent on mutations of "we the people hold these truths to be self-evident".

This interaction also facilitated processes which accelerated the demise of the "Soviet Union" and its continuing transcendence by the Russian Federation – the choice of title being a notice of intent that some interpreted as the "End of History" whilst others interpreted as lateral opportunity facilitated by the hubris of the "End of History".

The "red experts" were not unique in their illusions; another pertinent example is the strategy of the PLO in maintaining the illusion of the two state solution/"Oslo accords" facilitating the continuing colonial project branded as "Israel".

Mr. Brzezinski was one of the others who interpreted the "End of History" as linear opportunity where the assay of amalga of form could be changed to maintain content/function which was/is to "still" control all the players.

However in any interactive system neither omniscience nor sole agency/control is possible, whilst by virtue of interaction the complicity of all can be encouraged in various ways to facilitate useful outcomes in furtherance of purpose, whilst illusions of the "End of History" and the search for the holy grail of "Full Spectrum Dominance" acted as both accelerators and multipliers in the process of encouragement, whilst obscuring this process in open sight through the opponents' amalga of reliance on "plausible belief based in part on projection", "exceptionalism" and associated hubris.

The "nation state" subsuming illusions of mutual benefit and mutual purpose has always been a function of the half-lives of components of its ideological facades and practices – sexual intercourse wasn't invented in 1963 and "The "nation-state" as a fundamental unit of man's organized life has ceased to be the principal creative force" wasn't initiated in 1970.

Unfettered Fire , September 14, 2018 at 13:43

"In our society, real power does not happen to lie in the political system, it lies in the private economy: that's where the decisions are made about what's produced, how much is produced, what's consumed, where investment takes place, who has jobs, who controls the resources, and so on and so forth. And as long as that remains the case, changes inside the political system can make some difference -- I don't want to say it's zero -- but the differences are going to be very slight." ~ Noam Chomsky

Giants: The Global Power Elite – A talk by Peter Phillips
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Np6td-wzDYQ

The Elite World Order in Jitters
Review of Peter Phillips' book Giants: The Global Power Elite
https://dissidentvoice.org/2018/09/the-elite-world-order-in-jitters/

backwardsevolution , September 14, 2018 at 17:14

Unfettered Fire – good posts. Thank you. Peter Phillips is definitely worth listening to.

Jon Dhoe , September 14, 2018 at 11:02

Israel, Israel, Israel.

When are we going to start facing facts?

Daniel Good , September 14, 2018 at 09:59

Yet there is a thread that leads through US foreign policy. It all started with NSC 68. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/NSC_68 . Already in the 1950's, leading bankers were afraid of economic depression which would follow from a "peace dividend" following the end of WWII. To avoid this, and to avoid "socialism", the only acceptable government spending was on defense. This mentality never ended. Today 50% of discretionary govenmenrt spending is on the military. http://www.unz.com/article/americas-militarized-economy/ . We live in a country of military socialism, in which military citizens have all types of benefits, on condition they join the military-industrial-complex. This being so, there is no need for real "intelligence", there is no need to "understand" what goes on is foreign countries, there no need to be right about what might happen or worry about consequences. What is important is stimulate the economy by spending on arms. From Korean war, when the US dropped more bombs than it had on Nazi Germany, through Viet Nam, Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya etc etc the US policy was a winning one not for those who got bombed (and could not fight back) but for the weapons industry and military contractors. Is the NYTimes ever going to discuss this aspect? Or any one in the MSM?

Lee Anderson , September 16, 2018 at 15:42

All that and we constantly have to endure the bankster/MIC-controlled media proclaiming everyone who joins the military as "heroes" defending our precious"freedoms." The media mafia is evil.

Walter , September 14, 2018 at 09:26

The "why" behind the US foreign policies was spoken with absolute honest clarity in the "Statement of A. Wess Mitchell
Assistant Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs" to the Senate on August 21 this year. The transcript is at :

https://www.foreign.senate.gov/imo/media/doc/082118_Mitchell_Testimony.pdf

Quoth the esteemed gentleman (inter alia)

"It continues to be among the foremost national security interests of the United States to prevent the domination of the Eurasian landmass by hostile powers. The central aim of the administration's foreign policy is to prepare our nation to confront this challenge by systematically strengthening the military, economic and political fundamentals of American power. "

Tellingly the "official" State Department copy is changed and omits the true spoken words

See yourself: https://www.state.gov/p/eur/rls/rm/2018/285247.htm

This is the essence of MacKinder's Thesis https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Geographical_Pivot_of_History and was the underlying reason for both world wars in the 20th century.

An essay on this observed truth https://journal-neo.org/2018/09/11/behind-the-anglo-american-war-on-russia/

A deeper essay on the same subject https://www.silkroadstudies.org/resources/pdf/Monographs/1006Rethinking-4.pdf

I would propose that the zionish aspect exists due to the perceived necessity of "Forward Operating Base Israel" lookit a map, Comrade The ISIS?Saudi?Zionist games divides the New Silk Road and the Eurasian land mass and exists to throttle said pathways.

Interestingly the latter essay is attributed to Eldar Ismailov and Vladimer Papava

Brother Comrade Putin knows the game. The US has to maintain the fiction for the public that it does not know the game, and is consequently obliged to maintain a vast public delusion, hence "fake news" and all the rest.

OlyaPola , September 14, 2018 at 13:49

"I would propose that the zionish aspect exists due to the perceived necessity of "Forward Operating Base Israel" lookit a map, Comrade"

Some have an attraction to book-ends.

Once upon a time the Eurasian book-ends were Germany and Japan, and the Western Asian book-ends Israel and Saudi Arabia.

This "strategy" is based upon the notion that bookend-ness is a state of inertia which in any interactive system is impossible except apparently to those embedded in "we the people hold these truths to be self-evident".

Consequently some have an attraction to book-ends.

Walter , September 15, 2018 at 12:31

If I understand you correctly, then yes, some imagine that a static situation can exist. This a natural but delusional way of seeing the world, of course – especially because Chin and Rus are able to liquidate any counter-forces that attempt to create or maintain "book-ends.

The actual spoken words to the Senate of Mr. Michell are very significant, as the removal of them from the ostensibly real, but actually false, State Department "Transcript" implies. Foolish Mr. Michell! He accidentally spoke the true objective of US foreign policy and also the domestic objective – total bamboozlement of the US population "prepare the country for " (Obvious, world war against the Heartland states that fail to "cooperate" (surrender).

People ought to read the pdf what Michell actually spoke all of it and consider the logical implications. Michell has a big mouth Good. He confirms the dark truths

The guilty according to circumstantial evidence has confessed his guilt so to say; confirming the crime

An Israeli-Saudi "Greater Israel" dividing Syria between Saud and zion is of course a goal that in effect would be a "book-end".

Too late now as it is clear that Syrian skies are probably going to soon be "no-fly-zone" for foreign invaders

Then will come the "pitch-forks", as Napoleon's retreat from Moscow illustrated

OlyaPola , September 16, 2018 at 04:25

"If I understand you correctly, then yes, some imagine that a static situation can exist. This a natural but delusional way of seeing the world"

Absolutes including stasis don't exist but the belief of others in book-ends including extensive foreign bases are lands of opportunities for others facilitating pitch forking without extensive travel.

Consequently some perceive that the opponents have hopes and wishes which they seek to represent as "strategies" and "tactics" and some opportunities of lateral challenge derived there-from.

Some would hold that the opponents' have a greater assay of the rubbing sticks school of thermo-dynamics in "their" amalga of perception, in some regards even less perceptive than Heraclitus although Heraclitus lived in his time/interactions as the interaction below suggests.

One of the consequences is the opponents tendency to bridge doubt by belief to attain comfort through iteration and subsequent projection, facilitating lateral opportunities for others with greater perception of fission/metamorphosis/transcendence including the "unintended consequences" -at least in the opponents' perception – without resort to Mr. Heisenberg's deliberations, leading to some of the opponents resorting to snake-oil sales techniques suggesting that their intent/purpose was always what they perceived to be the concept/construct "chaos".

A further illustration of this and how it was/is not limited to present opponents citing trajectories during the period 1968 – 1973 and some subsequent consequences was broadcast through this portal on the 14th of September 2018 but not "published" possibly in ignorance of Mr. Bulgakov's contention that manuscripts don't burn.

The examples used were detente on the bases of spheres of influence agreed by the Politburo despite contrary advice from many agencies, the strategy of the PLO and half-life of these beliefs in the strategies of Hamas.

Detente on the basis of sphere of influence facilitated fiat currency, fiat politics, and fiat re-branding – "neo-liberalism" -, colonial projects in Western Asia, and how opening Pandora's box was/is only perceived as wholly a disadvantage for those seeking to deny lateral process (Stop the Empires War on Russia slogan being a useful example) and those not so immersed helped facilitate the ongoing transcendence of the "Soviet Union" by the Russian Federation – the title being a notice of intent that opponents perceived as the "End of History" as functions of their framing and projection.

OlyaPola , September 16, 2018 at 07:51

Some hold that New York, New York was so good they named it twice, whilst some others wonder whether they named it twice to make it easier for the inhabitants to locate.

Following the precautionary principle I attach below a further illustration of :

" . the opponents have hopes and wishes which they seek to represent as "strategies" and "tactics" and some opportunities of lateral challenge derived there-from ..

"One of the consequences is the opponents tendency to bridge doubt by belief to attain comfort through iteration and subsequent projection, facilitating lateral opportunities for others with greater perception of fission/metamorphosis/transcendence including the "unintended consequences" -at least in the opponents' perception – without resort to Mr. Heisenberg's deliberations, leading to some of the opponents resorting to snake-oil sales techniques suggesting that their intent/purpose was always what they perceived to be the concept/construct "chaos".

which was alluded to in the "unpublished" broadcast which referenced

1. "The "nation-state" as a fundamental unit of man's organized life has ceased to be the principal creative force: International banks and multinational corporations are acting and planning in terms that are far in advance of the political concepts of the nation-state." ~ Zbigniew Brzezinski, Between Two Ages, 1970.

2. Mr. P.C. Roberts' Alienation in the USSR (1971)

3. Mr Andrei Amalrik's Can the Soviet Union last until 1984 (1969).

in illustration of interactive amalga which some call Russiagate, presumably because the water had flowed but apparently not under the bridge.

The recent US presidential election process including the "outcomes" were relatively easy to predict
and required no encouragement from outside – doing "nothing" being a trajectory of doing for those not trapped in the can do/must do conflation.

Some don't understand Russian very well and so instead of understanding Mr. Putin's remark that Mr. Trump was "colourful" which has connotations to some with facility in the Russian culture/language, some sought to bridge doubt by belief to attain expectation on the basis of "plausible belief".

An increasing sum of some are no longer so immersed as illustrated in

https://www.rt.com/shows/on-contact/438556-america-book-conversation-economy/

whilst perceptual frames often have significant half-lives.

exiled off mainstreet , September 14, 2018 at 00:42

This is a great series of articles and the comments, including those having reservations, are intelligent. Since those comments appearing not to appear later seem to have appeared, mechanical difficulties of some sort seem to have been what occurred. I hope Mr. Tedesky, one of the most valued commentators writing in the comments, continues his work.

Dennis Etler , September 13, 2018 at 21:05

Patrick Lawrence's essay makes perfect sense only when it is applied to US foreign policy since the end of WW2. It is conventional wisdom that the US is now engaged in Cold War 2.0. In fact, Cold War 2.0 is an extension of Cold War 1.0. There was merely a 20 year interregnum between 1990 and 2010. Most analysts think that Cold War 1.0 was an ideological war between "Communism" and "Democracy". The renewal of the Cold War against both Russia and China however shows that the ideological war between East and West was really a cover for the geopolitical war between the two. Russia, China and Iran are the main geopolitical enemies of the US as they stand in the way of the global, imperialist hegemony of the US. In order to control the global periphery, i.e. the developing world and their emerging economies, the US must contain and defeat the big three. This was as true in 1948 as it is in 2018. Thus, what's happening today under Trump is no different than what occurred under Truman i