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Israel lobby

The Israel lobby (at times called the Zionist lobby) is the diverse coalition of those who, as individuals and/or as groups, seek to influence the foreign policy of the United States in support of Israel or the policies of the government of Israel...The largest pro-Israel lobbying group is Christians United for Israel; the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) is a leading organization within the lobby, speaking on behalf of a coalition of American Jewish groups. ~Wikipedia

 

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  As avenues to foreign influence in innumerable ways, such attachments are particularly alarming to the truly enlightened and independent patriot. How many opportunities do they afford to tamper with domestic factions, to practice the arts of seduction, to mislead public opinion, to influence or awe the public councils? Such an attachment of a small or weak towards a great and powerful nation dooms the former to be the satellite of the latter.

Against the insidious wiles of foreign influence (I conjure you to believe me, fellow-citizens) the jealousy of a free people ought to be constantly awake, since history and experience prove that foreign influence is one of the most baneful foes of republican government. But that jealousy to be useful must be impartial; else it becomes the instrument of the very influence to be avoided, instead of a defense against it. Excessive partiality for one foreign nation and excessive dislike of another cause those whom they actuate to see danger only on one side, and serve to veil and even second the arts of influence on the other. Real patriots who may resist the intrigues of the favorite are liable to become suspected and odious, while its tools and dupes usurp the applause and confidence of the people, to surrender their interests.

The great rule of conduct for us in regard to foreign nations is in extending our commercial relations, to have with them as little political connection as possible. So far as we have already formed engagements, let them be fulfilled with perfect good faith. Here let us stop. Europe has a set of primary interests which to us have none; or a very remote relation. Hence she must be engaged in frequent controversies, the causes of which are essentially foreign to our concerns. Hence, therefore, it must be unwise in us to implicate ourselves by artificial ties in the ordinary vicissitudes of her politics, or the ordinary combinations and collisions of her friendships or enmities.

George Washinton farewall address, 19th September, 1796

“We Should Not Be Deterred by Political Pressures,

~ President Eisenhower about pressures of Israel Lobby

"We, the [CENSORED] people, control America and the Americans know it."

-- Benjamin Netanyahu, Prime Minister of [CENSORED]

In his volume Cultural Insurrections, Kevin MacDonald has accurately described neoconservatism as “a complex interlocking professional and family network centered around Jewish publicists and organizers flexibly deployed to recruit the sympathies of both Jews and non-Jews in harnessing the wealth and power of the United States in the service of Israel.”[3]Kevin MacDonald, Cultural Insurrections: Essays on Western Civilizations, Jewish Influence, and Anti-Semitism, The Occidental Press, 2007, p. 122. The proof of the neocons’ crypto-Israelism is their U.S. foreign policy:

“The confluence of their interests as Jews in promoting the policies of the Israeli right wing and their construction of American interests allows them to submerge or even deny the relevance of their Jewish identity while posing as American patriots. […]

Indeed, since neoconservative Zionism of the Likud Party variety is well known for promoting a confrontation between the United States and the entire Muslim world, their policy recommendations best fit a pattern of loyalty to their ethnic group, not to America.”[4]Kevin McDonald, Cultural Insurrection, op. cit., p. 66.

Laurent Guyénot, The Unz Review. Apr 8, 2019

Fult of sll let's state the one of the golas of the US foreign policy is dominance over the Middle East. This is the essence of  so called Carter doctrine. And if it related to Israel only as much as a tool for the US foreign policy in the region, a client state.

But in vase of Israel the relation of the lord and a vassal became distorted but to the level of political power of pro-Israel lobby in the USA. The United States and Israel have long had a “special relationship” but it became "super-special" since Lyndon Johnson presidency. From this point Israel lobby escaped all levels of the state control and operated with utter impunity. Even Jonathan Pollard  arrest in 1985 did not changed this situation. 

The USA became the first country in the world to recognize the state of Israel in 1948, and has been an important ally and benefactor ever since. A critical component of this special relationship is the pro-Israel lobby. While Israel remains the USA vassal state and generally promotes the USA imperial foreign policy in Middle East. But that relationship is far from one way street. Due to existence of the influential Israel lobby the tail often wag the dog. The main objection of many Americans is about the level of control of  Zionist lobby of the USA foreign policy and securing the flow of aid to Israel. For example, in 2016 Obama signed a new 10-year military-assistance deal, representing the single largest pledge of its kind in American history. The pact will be worth $38 billion over the course of a decade, an increase of roughly 27% percent on the money pledged in the last agreement, which was signed in 2007.  Trump, who many view as the most pro-Israeli President in the US post war history, in first two years of his presidency   carries two important pro-Israel initiatives: (1) moving  the embassy to Jerusalem and (2) recognition of Golan Heights  as a part of Israel (the move that goes contrary to the UN resolution of the subject)

The book of Mearsheimer and Walt was the first to describe the remarkable level of material and diplomatic support that the United States provides to Israel. they argued that this support cannot be fully explained on either strategic or moral grounds and that this exceptional relationship is due largely to the political influence of a two major groups:

  1. A loose coalition of rich donors (such as Adelson, who financed Trump campaign and previously Romney campaign) and controlled by them authoritarian, non-democratic organizations such as APAIC, which in no way democratically represents the views of the US citizens of Jewish nationality. None of them is registered via FARA, althouth there was one (failed) attempt to register predecessor of AIPAC by Kennedy administration.
  2. Lobbyists of MIC (aka neocons) who while while predominantly Jewish  in reality represent the interests of major US defense contractors. In a sense Israel as a state is also acting as powerful and influential foreign lobbyist for the US MIC.

The activities of those two groups shaped US foreign policy in a pro-Israel direction. In many ways the US government treats Israel as an unannounced additional state receiving all the support but caring no obligations to the all US citizens. Such a view on Israel as an "undeclared US state" helps to explain many nuances of the US polices toward Israel.

One of the most interesting proposals to deal with  this problem were Senator Gravel's proposals during his 2020 election campaign for the President of the USA, as described in a recent Mondoweiss piece :

Mearsheimer and Walt contend that the Israel lobby has a far-reaching impact on the Middle East―in Iraq, Iran, Lebanon, and influences any attempt to resolve the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. The Israel lobby advocates policies which are in neither America's national interest nor Israel's long-term interest. In this sense (and this happens typically with emigrant groups which  adopted more extreme views that people of the homeland) Israel lobby is more Zionists then most Israeli politicians

Mearsheimer and Walt contend that the Israel lobby has a far-reaching impact on the Middle East―in Iraq, Iran, Lebanon, and influences any attempt to resolve the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. The Israel lobby advocates policies which are in neither America's national interest nor Israel's long-term interest. In this sense (and this happens typically with emigrant groups which  adopted more extreme views that people of the homeland) Israel lobby is more Zionists then most Israeli politicians (Israel's Armor The Israel Lobby and the First Generation of the Palestine Conflict (Cambridge Studies in US Foreign Relations):

The “Israel lobby” can be defined as a continuous campaign of advocacy on the part of Israel and its American supporters to secure US foreign policies that are perceived as favorable to the Israeli national interest. The lobby is both highly structured – including well-organized and well-funded entities, notably the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) – but also decentralized, encompassing a broad array of individuals and groups, Christian as well as Jewish, which offer spontaneous support of Israel. AIPAC and its precursors, backed by local councils and advocates across the United States, have long lobbied the president, members of Congress, and ultimately the public in order to secure political support and financial and military assistance.

The lobby stresses Israel’s vulnerability to various neighboring regimes while emphasizing that Israel seeks to live in peace, shares common goals and values with the United States, helps anchor security, and is the “sole democracy” in the Middle East.

Finally, the lobby condemns critics of Israel. When they perceive political threats to Israeli interests, lobby supporters strive energetically to limit or obstruct debate.

The Israel lobby is “widely viewed as the most powerful diasporic lobby seeking to shape US foreign policy.”3 Thus, no other country’s partisans in the history of US foreign policy – including the venerable China Lobby, Irish-Americans, or the influential Miami-based Cuban-Americans – have had a commensurate impact on American diplomacy. As the most influential pressure group associated with another nation in the history of American foreign relations, the Israel lobby clearly merits sustained analysis.

... ... ...

Both the Americans and the Zionists viewed themselves as chosen peoples. Both were settler societies fired by perceptions of their “manifest destiny” to inherit a promised land.10 Ultimately, the special relationship cannot be fully understood apart from the historical and cultural affinities – both “preexisting and constructed” – between the United States and Israel. Indeed, these forces are what made the relationship special – and enduring.11

The lobby's influence also affects America's relationship with important allies. It alienates Russia (several neocons were key players in Russiagate, and if justice to be served some of them should probably land in jail for their subversive activities directed at removing the elected President -- aka the attempt of stage coup d'état ) and increases dangers that the USA faces from global jihadist terror network. Which paradoxically was created and partially financed and trained by CIA as a tool for removing  President Assad in Syria -- the move which also was in Israel interests.

In view of crumbling the USA infrastructure this generosity toward Israel looks somewhat misplaced as they add to already inflated military expenses in the USA and increases that probability of nuclear war with Russia (especially via direct engagement in Syria, where Russia and USA support opposite sides of the conflict).  The lobby also helps to fuel the conflict with Iran, although the USA has other motives to be hostile to Iran too. 

The level of military expenses in the USA (over one trillion, if counted all sources) are also partially influenced by neocons as  lobbyists for MIC and Israeli lobby. In two recent administrations (Bush II and Trump) Zionists (and Zionism is an ideology not a nationality) occupied prominent positions and controlled the USA foreign policy.  That was also partially true for Obama administration: Hillary was as close to Zionists in foreign policy as one can get.  Israel lobby played a role in  putsch of 2014 in Ukraine (EuroMaydan revolutions) which brought to power far-right nationalist from Western Ukraine, who fought on the side of Third Reich in the WWII. There was at least one former Israel commandos, who participated in the EuroMaydan armed uprising.

In the past, Iraq war was fiercely promoted by Israel lobby and partially launched to benefit Israel, although the USA have their own geopolitical goals in the region connected with the control of oil.

In his interview to Playboy, veteran US journalist Helen Thomas reiterated her Israel lobby related concerns voicing of which led to her forced resignation. They  perfectly reflect the mood of a large faction of the US public.

She stated that Zionists have "total control" over the White House and US Congress, and "Everybody is in the pocket of the Israeli lobbies." Which of course means every US politician, as the last thing Israel lobby is interested in regular US citizens and their interests. As the result of her statements, Thomas, who covered the White House for more than six decades, was forced to resign from her position at Hearst Corp. Among other things she stated:

The neocons’ U.S. foreign policy has always coincided with the best interest of Israel as they see it. Before 1967, Israel’s interest rested heavily on Jewish immigration from Eastern Europe. From 1967, when Moscow closed Jewish emigration to protest Israel’s annexation of Arab territories, Israel’s interest included the U.S. winning the Cold War. That is when the editorial board of Commentary, the monthly magazine of the American Jewish Committee, experienced their conversion to “neoconservatism,” and Commentary became, in the words of Benjamin Balint, “the contentious magazine that transformed the Jewish left into the neoconservative right .[5]Benjamin Balint, Running Commentary: The Contentious Magazine That Transformed the Jewish Left into the Neoconservative Right, Public Affairs, 2010. Irving Kristol explained to the American Jewish Congress in 1973 why anti-war activism was no longer good for Israel: “it is now an interest of the Jews to have a large and powerful military establishment in the United States. […]

American Jews who care about the survival of the state of Israel have to say, no, we don’t want to cut the military budget, it is important to keep that military budget big, so that we can defend Israel.”[6]Congress Bi-Weekly, quoted by Philip Weiss, “30 Years Ago, Neocons Were More Candid About Their Israel-Centered Views,” Mondoweiss.net, May 23, 2007: mondoweiss.net/2007/05/30_years_ago_ne.html This tells us what “reality” Kristol was referring to, when he famously defined a neoconservative as “a liberal who has been mugged by reality” (Neoconservatism: the Autobiography of an Idea, 1995).

With the end of the Cold War, the national interest of Israel changed once again. The primary objective became the destruction of Israel’s enemies in the Middle East by dragging the U.S. into a third world war. The neoconservatives underwent their second conversion, from anti-communist Cold Warriors to Islamophobic “Clashers of Civilizations” and crusaders in the “War on Terror.”

In September 2001, they got the “New Pearl Harbor” that they had been wishing for in a PNAC report a year before.[7]http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/pdf/Rebuil...es.pdf Two dozens neoconservatives had by then been introduced by Dick Cheney into key positions, including Richard Perle, Paul Wolfowitz and Douglas Feith at the Pentagon, David Wurmser at the State Department, and Philip Zelikow and Elliott Abrams at the National Security Council.

Abrams had written three years earlier that Diaspora Jews “are to stand apart from the nation in which they live. It is the very nature of being Jewish to be apart — except in Israel — from the rest of the population.”[8]Elliott Abrams, Faith or Fear: How Jews Can Survive in a Christian America, Simon & Schuster, 1997, p. 181. Perle, Feith and Wurmser had co-signed in 1996 a secret Israeli report entitled A Clean Break: A New Strategy for Securing the Realm, urging Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to break with the Oslo Accords of 1993 and reaffirm Israel’s right of preemption on Arab territories.

They also argued for the overthrow of Saddam Hussein as “an important Israeli strategic objective in its own right.” As Patrick Buchanan famously remarked, the 2003 Iraq war proves that the plan “has now been imposed by Perle, Feith, Wurmser & Co. on the United States.”[9]Patrick J. Buchanan, “Whose War? A neoconservative clique seeks to ensnare our country in a series of wars that are not in America’s interest,” The American Conservative, March 24, 2003,

How these neocon artists managed to bully Secretary of State Colin Powell into submission is unclear, but, according to his biographer Karen DeYoung, Powell privately rallied against this “separate little government” composed of “Wolfowitz, Libby, Feith, and Feith’s ‘Gestapo Office’.”[10]Stephen Sniegoski, The Transparent Cabal: The Neoconservative Agenda, War in the Middle East, and the National Interest of Israel, Enigma Edition, 2008, p. 156. His chief of staff, Colonel Lawrence Wilkerson, declared in 2006 on PBS that he had “participated in a hoax on the American people, the international community and the United Nations Security Council,”[11]http://www.pbs.org/now/politics/wilkerson.html and in 2011, he openly denounced the duplicity of neoconservatives such as Wurmser and Feith, whom he considered “card-carrying members of the Likud party.” “I often wondered,” he said, “if their primary allegiance was to their own country or to Israel.”[12]Stephen Sniegoski, The Transparent Cabal, op. cit., p. 120.

Something doesn’t quite ring true when neocons say “we Americans,” for example Paul Wolfowitz declaring: “Since September 11th, we Americans have one thing more in common with Israelis.”[13]April 11, 2002, quoted in Justin Raimondo, The Terror Enigma: 9/11 and the Israeli Connection, iUniverse, 2003, p. 19.

The neocons’ capacity to deceive the American public by posturing as American rather than Israeli patriots required that their Jewishness be taboo, and Carl Bernstein, though a Jew himself, provoked a scandal by citing on national television the responsibility of “Jewish neocons” for the Iraq war.[14]April 26, 2013, on MSNBC, watch on https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZRlatDWqh0o. But the fact that the destruction of Iraq was carried out on behalf of Israel is now widely accepted, thanks in particular to the 2007 book by John Mearsheimer and Stephen Walt, The Israel Lobby and U.S. Foreign Policy.

Thomas appeared to hold her position and showed no regret for last year's comments after her dismissal:

"Why shouldn't I say it? I knew exactly what I was doing -- I was going for broke. I had reached the point of no return. You finally get fed up," Thomas said.

Thomas denied claims that she was anti-Jewish. "I think they're wonderful people. They had to have the most depth. They were leaders in civil rights. They've always had the heart for others but not for Arabs, for some reason. "

Thomas added that Jews "carry on the victimization. American people do not know that the Israeli lobbyists have intimidated them into believing that every Jew is a persecuted victim forever -- while they are victimizing Palestinians."

I'm not anti-Jewish; I'm anti-Zionist."  she explained. Her comment that Jews should go back to Poland and Germany meant "they should stay where they are because they're not being persecuted -- not since World War II... If they were, we sure would hear about it." Thomas added that Jews "carry on the victimization. American people do not know that the Israeli lobbyists have intimidated them into believing that every Jew is a persecuted victim forever -- while they are victimizing Palestinians."

The neocons have perfected this mask of fake American patriots promoting foreign policy profitable to MIC and, by extension, to Israel, and ultimately harmful for Americans

When asked whether she believed their was a secret Jewish conspiracy at work in the US, Thomas stated that it is "not a secret. It's very open... Everybody is in the pocket of the Israeli lobbies, which are funded by wealthy supporters, including those from Hollywood. Same thing with the financial markets. There's total control."  ( Jerusalem Post, March 19, 2011)

Overview of studies  of the "Israel lobby

Philip Giraldi   is one of the most prolific author of this topic. Many of his articles were published at unz.com. He does not link Israel lobby with neoliberalism, though. And that's a weakness. But his article are rich of interesting facts of influence of Israel lobby on the US foreign policy and election process. Here are a couple of quotes from his Sep 4, 2018 article Israel's Fifth Column

Referring to Israel during an interview in August 1983, U.S. Navy Admiral and former head of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Thomas Moorer said “I’ve never seen a President — I don’t care who he is — stand up to them. It just boggles the mind. They always get what they want. The Israelis know what is going on all the time. I got to the point where I wasn’t writing anything down. If the American people understood what a grip these people have got on our government, they would rise up in arms. Our citizens certainly don’t have any idea what goes on.”

... ... ...

If Admiral Moorer were still alive, I would have to tell him that the situation vis-à-vis Israeli power is much worse now than it was in 1983. He would be very interested in reading a remarkable bit of research recently completed by Smith demonstrating exactly how Israel and its friends work from inside the system to corrupt our political process and make the American government work in support of Jewish state interests. He describes in some detail how the Israel Lobby has been able to manipulate the law enforcement community to protect and promote Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s agenda.

A key component in the Israeli penetration of the US government has been President George W. Bush’s 2004 signing off on the creation of the Office of Terrorism and Financial Intelligence (OTFI) within the Department of the Treasury. The group’s website proclaims that it is responsible for “safeguarding the financial system against illicit use and combating rogue nations, terrorist facilitators, weapons of mass destruction (WMD) proliferators, money launderers, drug kingpins, and other national security threats,” but it has from its founding been really all about safeguarding Israel’s perceived interests. Grant Smith notes however, how “the secretive office has a special blind spot for major terrorism generators, such as tax-exempt money laundering from the United States into illegal Israeli settlements and proliferation financing and weapons technology smuggling into Israel’s clandestine nuclear weapons complex.”

... ... ...

The OTFI story is outrageous, but it is far from unique. There is a history of American Jews closely attached to Israel being promoted by powerful and cash rich domestic lobbies to act on behalf of the Jewish state. To be sure, Jews who are Zionists are vastly overrepresented in all government agencies that have anything at all to do with the Middle East and one can reasonably argue that the Republican and Democratic Parties are in the pockets of Jewish billionaires named Sheldon Adelson and Haim Saban.

Here is an information about previous research of Israel lobby in the USA which is extracted from  the  book Israel's Armor The Israel Lobby and the First Generation of the Palestine Conflict (Cambridge Studies in US Foreign Relations)

Previous Studies of the “Israel Lobby”

This study is not the first on the Israel lobby, and it will not be the last, yet the subject is a difficult one and typically there is a price to pay for taking it on. Especially in the United States, critical studies of Israeli policy are certain to be targeted for condemnation. Studies of the lobby are even more susceptible to attack. Paradoxically, the condemnation of these works underscores both the intensity of the special relationship and the clout of the Israel lobby.

In the 1980s, critical studies of Israeli policy and substantive analysis of the role of the lobby began to emerge in the wake of Israel’s turn to the right with the electoral triumph of the Likud Party. The Camp David Accords (1978) led to a separate peace with Egypt, but failed to lead to a broader resolution of the Palestine conflict. A longtime proponent of annexing the biblical Israel, Prime Minister Menachem Begin accelerated the development of already proliferating Jewish settlements in the Palestinian territories. In 1982, Israel also launched a punishing attack on Lebanon. By this time the lobby had grown powerful and multifaceted, with AIPAC as the spearhead. AIPAC boasted of ousting elected officials critical of Israel, a process book-ended by two chairmen of the influential Senate Foreign Relations Committee (SFRC), Sens. J. William Fulbright (D-AR), defeated in 1974, and Sen. Charles Percy (R-IL.), targeted by the lobby and defeated in 1984.12

In 1982, Seth Tillman, a former member of the SFRC staff, published a book arguing that “the powerful Israeli lobby” impeded efforts to pursue a Middle East diplomacy grounded in the national interest and dedicated to achieving settlement of the Palestine conflict. Fulbright wrote the foreword to the study. Another critic of US Middle East policy, Rep. Paul Findley (R-IL), who had been targeted by AIPAC and ousted in the 1982 congressional elections, condemned the lobby and lauded its critics in a book published in 1985, They Dare to Speak Out: People and Institutions Confront Israel’s Lobby.13

More impactful than the early works on the lobby was the broadside delivered by the linguist turned foreign policy critic Noam Chomsky. In The Fateful Triangle: The United States, Israel and the Palestinians, published in 1983, Chomsky condemned the United States and Israel for the destruction in Lebanon and the ongoing repression in Palestine. The MIT professor acknowledged the clout of the organized lobby, but argued that it was “far from the whole story” and that an excessive focus on it, “underestimates the scope of the ‘support for Israel’ in American life.” Chomsky explained that one-sided US policies backing Israel sprang from sources “far broader than the Jewish community,” including Christians, liberals, labor unions, the oil and gas industries, and a power elite that benefited from constructing Israel as an American “strategic asset.”14

Defenders of Israeli policy found Chomsky’s incendiary account difficult to refute and the book became a classic (the latest edition was released in 2015). While Chomsky offered a broad indictment of US and Israeli policies, other works homed in on the Israel lobby. In 1986, political scientist Cheryl A. Rubenberg published a book with a nearly 50-page chapter arguing that pro-Israel advocacy had achieved “a virtual stranglehold” over US Middle East policy. As with Chomsky, critics condemned Rubenberg for her “polemical tone” and alleged animus toward Israel – a familiar refrain.15

In 1987, Edward Tivnan secured a major mainstream publisher for his journalistic assessment of the lobby and its influence. Whereas a capsule review in Foreign Affairs concluded that Tivnan’s “research is sound and his tone temperate, but somber,” a reviewer in Commentary, the magazine of the American Jewish Committee (AJC), declared Tivnan’s account was “so fevered, so riddled with errors of both methodology and substance, so driven by animus, as to render his book useless except to those similarly tormented.” In the Los Angeles Times, political scientist Steven Spiegel likewise condemned the book as a “snide, sometimes bitter, largely trivial and even boring account of the role of the American Jewish community’s efforts on behalf of Israel.” Two years previously Spiegel had published his own book on US relations with Israel, which had downplayed the role of the lobby.16

In a book coauthored with his son in 1992, veteran DOS diplomat George Ball invoked President George Washington, who had warned in his farewell address in 1796 about the pitfalls of developing a “passionate attachment” for any foreign nation. The first president was referring to revolutionary France, but the Balls were targeting Israel and the lobby in a substantive study published by a major mainstream press. They warned that the “passionate attachment” to Israel had produced a morally as well as financially irresponsible foreign policy divorced from the realities of the Middle East conflict. Despite George Ball’s celebrated sagacity for having advised Johnson against escalation of the Indochina War in the mid-1960s, The Passionate Attachment was widely ignored.17

The same was not true, however, of another coauthored and now famous – or, to some, infamous – book: The Israel Lobby and US Foreign Policy, by John J. Mearsheimer and Stephen M. Walt. Published by a mainstream popular press, The Israel Lobby ignited a vitriolic response from Israel’s defenders. The book and its authors – two highly accomplished political science professors from distinguished institutions, the University of Chicago (Mearsheimer) and Harvard (Walt) – became a national if not international cause célèbre. Never before was the Israel lobby so widely discussed, nor chroniclers of its influence so bitterly condemned.

The Mearsheimer–Walt thesis was clearly stated, bolstered by evidence, and forcefully driven home in the book. “Today,” they argued,

America’s intimate embrace of Israel – and especially its willingness to subsidize it no matter what its policies are – is not making Americans safer or more prosperous. To the contrary: unconditional support for Israel is undermining relations with other US allies, casting doubt on America’s wisdom and moral vision, helping inspire a generation of anti-American extremists, and complicating US efforts to deal with a volatile but vital region.

They added, “We believe the activities of the groups and individuals who make up the lobby are the main reason why the United States pursues policies in the Middle East that make little sense on either strategic or moral grounds.”18

Pro-Israeli public officials, academics, journalists, and pundits tore into the book, setting the tone for a campaign of discrediting the study as simply an anti-Israel, if not anti-Jewish, diatribe, rather than an analysis of one of the most powerful lobbies in American politics. Writing in The New Republic, Jeffrey Goldberg equated Mearsheimer and Walt’s views of Israel with those of September 11 terrorist Osama Bin Laden. Most Jewish organizations harshly condemned the book, including the Anti-Defamation League (ADL), which published its own book in rebuttal, entitled The Deadliest Lies. Former CIA Director James Woolsey discerned a “commitment to distorting the historical record,” while Israeli historian Benny Morris, whose work had been quoted in the book, found it “riddled with shoddiness and defiled by mendacity.”19

... ... ...

The brutal reaction to the Mearsheimer–Walt book doubtless exerted a chilling effect on scholarship on the lobby. The only major academic study produced since the controversy has been a richly detailed recent book on the origins and evolution of the lobby by Israeli scholar Natan Aridan. Advocating for Israel: Diplomats and Lobbyists from Truman to Nixon is especially useful for its exploitation of sources in Hebrew and its elucidation of disputes as well as cooperation between and among the Israeli government and the American lobby.22

A nationalistic assessment – indeed, virtually a court history – Aridan’s book is the antidote to Mearsheimer and Walt, as it reflexively celebrates Israel and the lobby. Throughout the work Aridan castigates American diplomats and the Arab states for their alleged unprovoked hostility to Israel. The book thus reflects an orthodox school of interpretation of Israeli innocence in the Palestine conflict, thereby eliding two generations of post-Zionist scholarship. It also appears to aspire to deflect attention from the US lobby by emphasizing the primacy of Israeli hasbara (a Hebrew term for generating favorable propaganda for foreign audiences) in propelling Zionist advocacy.23 As this study will show, Israeli hasbara played a crucial role, but key Israeli officials – notably the skilled diplomat Abba Eban – collaborated with the American lobby rather than creating or controlling it.

Originating in 2002, a growing counterlobby has emerged in Washington to challenge the Israel lobby. The Institute for Research: Middle East Policy (IRMEP) has amassed a substantial archive on the Israel lobby, offers polling data and policy analysis on the Middle East conflict, and hosts an annual conference in Washington that is televised by C-SPAN. The IRMEP conference features speakers critical of Israeli policies, and the lobby’s role in bolstering them, and is held on the eve of AIPAC’s signature annual conference in Washington. IRMEP’s full-time director Grant F. Smith has published a series of books analyzing the history and current activities of the Israel lobby.24

Wikipedia article

Wikipedia article generally is not critical and  is somewhat weak in the major analysis areas in comparison with the Mearsheimer–Walt book. But this is the most widely available article on this topic and as such is a very important public document, which at least outlines the  scope of the problem: 

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

The Israel lobby (at times called the Zionist lobby) is the diverse coalition of those who, as individuals and/or as groups, seek to influence the foreign policy of the United States in support of Israel or the policies of the government of Israel. The lobby consists of secular, Christian, and Jewish-American individuals and groups. The largest pro-Israel lobbying group is Christians United for Israel; the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) is a leading organization within the lobby, speaking on behalf of a coalition of American Jewish groups.

A Christian belief in the return of the Jews to the Holy Land has roots in the US, which pre-date both the establishment of the Zionist movement and the establishment of Israel. Lobbying by these groups, to influence the US government in ways similar to Zionist ideology, dates back to at least the 19th century.

In 1844, Christian restorationist George Bush, a professor of Hebrew at New York University and distantly related to the Bush political family, published a book entitled The Valley of Vision; or, The Dry Bones of Israel Revived.[1] In it he denounced “the thralldom and oppression which has so long ground them (the Jews) to the dust,” and called for “elevating” the Jews “to a rank of honorable repute among the nations of the earth” by restoring the Jews to the land of Israel where the bulk would be converted to Christianity.[2] This, according to Bush, would benefit not only the Jews, but all of mankind, forming a “link of communication” between humanity and God. “It will blaze in notoriety...". “It will flash a splendid demonstration upon all kindreds and tongues of the truth.”[3] The book sold about a million copies in the antebellum period.[4] The Blackstone Memorial of 1891 was also a significant Christian Restorationist petition effort, led by William Eugene Blackstone, to persuade President Benjamin Harrison to pressure the Ottoman Sultan for the delivery of Palestine to the Jews.[5][6]

Starting in 1914, the involvement of Louis Brandeis and his brand of American Zionism made Jewish Zionism a force on the American scene for the first time, under his leadership it had increased ten-fold to about 200,000.[7] As chair of the American Provisional Executive Committee for General Zionist Affairs, Brandeis raised millions of dollars to relieve Jewish suffering in war-torn Europe, and from that time “became the financial center for the world Zionist movement.”[8] The British Balfour Declaration of 1917 additionally advanced the Zionist movement and gave it official legitimacy. The US Congress passed the first joint resolution stating its support for a homeland in Palestine for the Jewish people on September 21, 1922.[9] The same day, the Mandate of Palestine was approved by the Council of the League of Nations.

Zionist lobbying in the United States aided the creation of the State of Israel in 1947-48. The preparation of and voting for the United Nations Partition Plan for Palestine which preceded the Israeli Declaration of Independence, was met with an outpouring of Jewish American support and advocacy in Washington.[10] President Truman later noted, "The facts were that not only were there pressure movements around the United Nations unlike anything that had been seen there before, but that the White House, too, was subjected to a constant barrage. I do not think I ever had as much pressure and propaganda aimed at the White House as I had in this instance. The persistence of a few of the extreme Zionist leaders — actuated by political motives and engaging in political threats — disturbed and annoyed me."[11]

In the 1950s, the American Zionist Committee for Public Affairs was created by Isaiah L. "Si" Kenen. During the Eisenhower administration, Israel's concerns were not at the forefront. Other problems in the Middle East and USSR were paramount, and Israel's U.S. supporters were not as active as they had been. AZCPA formed a pro-Israel lobbying committee to counter rumors that the Eisenhower administration was going to investigate the American Zionist Council.[12] AZCPA's Executive Committee decided to change their name from American Zionist Committee for Public Affairs to American Israel Public Affairs Committee.[13]

The relationship between Israel and the government of the United States began with strong popular support for Israel and governmental reservations about the wisdom of creating a Jewish state; formal inter-government relations remained chilly until 1967.[14] Before 1967, the government of the United States provided some aid but was generally neutral towards Israel.[15] Since 1979, Israel has received the most foreign assistance. The roughly $3 billion in assistance to Israel comprises a small percentage of the roughly $3 trillion US budget.[16]

AIPAC "has grown into a 100,000-member national grassroots movement" and claims that it is America's "pro-Israel lobby."[17]

Structure

The pro-Israel lobby is composed of formal and informal components.

Informal lobby

Support for Israel is strong among American Christians of many denominations.[18] Informal Christian support for Israel includes a broad range varieties support for Israel ranging from the programming and news coverage on the Christian Broadcasting Network and the Christian Television Network to the more informal support of the annual Day of Prayer for the Peace of Jerusalem.[19]

Informal lobbying also includes the activities of Jewish groups. Some scholars view Jewish lobbying on behalf of Israel as one of many examples of a US ethnic group lobbying on behalf of an ethnic homeland,[20] which has met with a degree of success largely because Israel is strongly supported by a far larger and more influential Christian movement that shares its goals.[21] In a 2006 article in the London Review of Books, Professors John Mearsheimer and Stephen Walt wrote:

In its basic operations, the Israel Lobby is no different from the farm lobby, steel or textile workers' unions, or other ethnic lobbies. There is nothing improper about American Jews and their Christian allies attempting to sway US policy: the Lobby's activities are not a conspiracy of the sort depicted in tracts like the Protocols of the Elders of Zion. For the most part, the individuals and groups that comprise it are only doing what other special interest groups do, but doing it very much better. By contrast, pro-Arab interest groups, in so far as they exist at all, are weak, which makes the Israel Lobby's task even easier.[22]

Bard defines the Jewish "informal lobby" as the indirect means through which "Jewish voting behavior and American public opinion" influence "U.S. Middle East policy".[23] Bard describes the motivation underlying the informal lobby as follows:

"American Jews recognize the importance of support for Israel because of the dire consequences that could follow from the alternative. Despite the fact that Israel is often referred to now as the fourth most powerful country in the world, the perceived threat to Israel is not military defeat, it is annihilation. At the same time, American Jews are frightened of what might happen in the United States if they do not have political power."[23]

Formal lobby

The formal component of the Israel lobby consists of organized lobby groups, political action committees (PACs), think tanks and media watchdog groups. The Center for Responsive Politics, which tracks all lobbies and PACs, describes the 'background' of those 'Pro-Israel' as, "A nationwide network of local political action committees, generally named after the region their donors come from, supplies much of the pro-Israel money in US politics. Additional funds also come from individuals who bundle contributions to candidates favored by the PACs. The donors' unified goal is to build stronger US-Israel relations and to support Israel in its negotiations and armed conflicts with its Arab neighbors."[24]

According to Mitchell Bard, there are, three key formal lobbying groups:

Christians United for Israel give "every pro-Israel Christian and Christian church the opportunity to stand up and speak up for Israel." According to the group's founder and head, Pastor John Hagee, the members "ask the leadership of our government to stop putting pressure on Israel to divide Jerusalem and the land of Israel."[25]

In his 2006 book The Restoration of Israel: Christian Zionism in Religion, Literature, and Politics, sociologist Gerhard Falk describes the evangelical Christian groups that lobby on behalf of Israel as being so numerous that "it is not possible to list" them all, although many are linked via the National Association of Evangelicals.[19] It is a "powerful religious lobby" that actively supports Israel in Washington.[19]

According to the author of Kingdom Coming: The Rise of Christian Nationalism, Michelle Goldberg, "Evangelical Christians have substantial influence on US Middle East Policy, more so than some better-known names such as AIPAC."[27]

According to Mitchell Bard, the two Jewish groups aim to present policy makers with unified and representative messages via the aggregation and filtering of the diversity of opinions held by smaller pro-Israel lobby groups and the wider American Jewish community.[23] The diverse spectrum of opinions held by American Jewry is reflected in the many formal pro-Israel groups, and as such some analysts make a distinction within the Israel lobby between right-leaning and left-leaning groups. This diversity became more pronounced following Israel's acceptance of the Oslo Accords, which split "liberal universalists" and "hard-core Zionists --- the Orthodox community and right wing Jews".[28] This division mirrored a similar split for and against the Oslo process in Israel, and led to a parallel rift within the pro-Israel lobby.[29][30] During the 2008 election campaign, Barack Obama implicitly noted differences within the lobby in his comment that "there is a strain within the pro-Israel community that says, 'unless you adopt an unwavering pro-Likud approach to Israel, that you're anti-Israel,' and that can't be the measure of our friendship with Israel." Commentary Magazine, notes "It was an odd choice of words-Likud has not been Israel's governing party for more than three years-but what Obama clearly meant was that an American politician should not have to express fealty to the most hard-line ideas relating to Israel's security to be considered a supporter of Israel's."[31]

US foreign policy scholars John Mearsheimer and Stephen Walt, focusing almost exclusively on Jewish groups, define the core of the lobby to include AIPAC, the Washington Institute for Near East Policy, the Anti-Defamation League and Christians United for Israel.[32] Other key organizations which they state work to benefit Israel, in many cases by influencing US foreign policy, include the American Jewish Congress, the Zionist Organization of America, the Israel Policy Forum, the American Jewish Committee, the Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism, Americans for a Safe Israel, American Friends of Likud, Mercaz-USA, and Hadassah.[33] Fifty-one of the largest and most important come together in the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations, whose self-described mission includes "forging diverse groups into a unified force for Israel's well-being" and working to "strengthen and foster the special US-Israel relationship"[34]

Stephen Zunes, in a response to Mearsheimer and Walt, lists "Americans for Peace Now, the Tikkun Community, Brit Tzedek v'Shalom, and the Israel Policy Forum" as "pro-Israel" organizations that, unlike the right-leaning organizations focused on by Mearsheimer and Walt, are opposed to "the occupation, the settlements, the separation wall, and Washington's unconditional support for Israeli policies."[35] These organizations, however, are not PACs and therefore, like AIPAC, are prohibited by campaign finance regulations from financially supporting political campaigns of candidates for federal office.

John Mearsheimer and Stephen Walt state in their controversial bestseller, The Israel Lobby and U.S. Foreign Policy, that the tone of the right-leaning component of the Israel lobby results from the influence of the leaders of the two top lobby groups: AIPAC and the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations. They go on to list, as right-leaning think tanks associated with the lobby, the Washington Institute for Near East Policy, the American Enterprise Institute, and the Hudson Institute.[36] They also state that the media watchdog group Committee for Accuracy in Middle East Reporting in America (CAMERA) is part of the right-wing component of the lobby.[36][36]

In The Case for Peace, Alan Dershowitz also of Harvard, argues that the most right-leaning pro-Israel groups in the United States are not Jews at all, but Evangelical Christians. Dershowitz cites "Stand for Israel, an organization devoted to mobilizing Evangelical Christian support for Israel" co-founded by "[f]ormer Christian Coalition executive director Ralph Reed."[37] Although the rhetoric of most groups like Stand for Israel is similar to their Jewish-based counterparts, some individuals have based their support on specific biblical passages, thus they have been vulnerable to criticism from Israelis and US Jews for having "ulterior motives" such as the fulfillment of "prerequisite to the Second Coming" or having "better access for proselytizing among Jews."[37][38]

In April 2008, J Street was established, describing itself as the only federal "pro-peace, pro-Israel" PAC. Its goal is to provide political and financial support to candidates for federal office from US citizens who believe a new direction in US policy will advance US interests in the Middle East and promote real peace and security for Israel. Founded by former President Bill Clinton advisor Jeremy Ben Ami and policy analyst Daniel Levy and supported by prominent Israeli politicians and high-ranking officers (see Letter of support from prominent Israeli leaders), J Street supports diplomatic solutions over military ones, including with Iran; multilateral over unilateral approaches to conflict resolution; and dialog over confrontation with a wide range of countries and actors.[citation needed]

Means of influence

As with all interest groups, it matters what they are asking for and when they are asking for it.-Stephen Walt

The means via which Israel lobby groups exert influence are similar to the means via which other similar lobbies, such as the National Rifle Association (NRA) and the AARP (formerly known as "American Association of Retired Persons"), exert influence. A number of commentators have asserted that the Israel lobby has undue or pervasive influence over U.S. foreign policy in the Middle East.[citation needed] However, other commentators note that no similar volume of criticism exists concerning the NRA, AARP or other major political lobbies, and claim that much of this criticism is based on antisemitic notions of a Jewish conspiracy.[40]

Voting power

According to Bard,[23] "Jews have devoted themselves to politics with almost religious fervor." He cites that "Jews have the highest percentage voter turnout of any ethnic group" and that of the American Jewish population "roughly 94 percent live in thirteen key electoral college states" which alone "are worth enough electoral votes to elect the president. If you add the non-Jews shown by opinion polls to be as pro-Israel as Jews, it is clear Israel has the support of one of the largest veto groups in the country." Bard goes on to say that for United States congressmen "there are no benefits to candidates taking an openly anti-Israel stance and considerable costs in both loss of campaign contributions and votes from Jews and non-Jews alike."[23]

"Most important fact about the Jewish vote in America", according to Jeffrey S. Helmreich of the Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs, "lies in the fact that it is a uniquely swayable bloc. [...] The issue of support for Israel [by a candidate] has proven capable of spurring a sizable portion of Jews to switch parties-in large enough numbers to tip the scales in national or statewide elections. Moreover, the "Israel swing vote" is especially open to political courtship because, unlike the interests of other minority groups, support for Israel has long been compatible with traditional Republican and Democratic agendas. ... On the other hand, being distinctively unsupportive of Israel can significantly hurt a candidate's chances."[41][42]

Campaign donations

"Political campaign contributions", writes Mitchell Bard, "are also considered an important means of influence; typically, Jews have been major benefactors."

According to Bard, objective quantification that the impact of campaign contributions have on "legislative outcomes, particularly with regard to Israel-related issues" is difficult. This is because raw analysis of contributions statistics do not take into account "non-monetary factors" and whether or not "a candidate is pro-Israel because of receiving a contribution, or receives a donation as a result of taking a position in support of Israel."[23]

Targeting

AIPAC does not give donations directly to candidates, but those who donate to AIPAC are often important political contributors in their own right. In addition, AIPAC helps connect donors with candidates, especially to the network of pro-Israel political action committees. AIPAC president Howard Friedman says "AIPAC meets with every candidate running for Congress. These candidates receive in-depth briefings to help them completely understand the complexities of Israel's predicament and that of the Middle East as a whole. We even ask each candidate to author a 'position paper' on their views of the US-Israel relationship – so it's clear where they stand on the subject."[43]

This process has become more targeted over time according to Bard, "In the past, Jewish contributions were less structured and targeted than other interest groups, but this has changed dramatically as Israel-related PACs have proliferated."[23] Among politicians considered unfriendly to Israel who AIPAC has helped defeat include Cynthia McKinney, Paul Findley, Earl F. Hilliard, Pete McCloskey, Senators William Fulbright and Roger Jepsen, and Adlai Stevenson III in his campaign for governor of Illinois in 1982.[44] The defeat of Charles H. Percy, Senator for Illinois until 1985, has been attributed to AIPAC-co-ordinated donations to his opponent after he supported the sale of AWACS planes to Saudi Arabia. Donations included $1.1 million on anti-Percy advertising by Michael Goland, who was also a major contributor to AIPAC.[44] Former executive director of AIPAC, Tom Dine, was quoted as saying, "All the Jews in America, from coast to coast, gathered to oust Percy. And the American politicians - those who hold public positions now, and those who aspire - got the message".[45]

Financial figures

A summary of pro-Israel campaign donations for the period of 1990–2008 collected by Center for Responsive Politics indicates current totals and a general increase in proportional donations to the US Republican party since 1996.[46] The Center for Responsive Politics' 1990–2006 data shows that "pro-Israel interests have contributed $56.8 million in individual, group and soft money donations to federal candidates and party committees since 1990."[47] In contrast, Arab-Americans and Muslim PACs contributed slightly less than $800,000 during the same (1990–2006) period.[48] In 2006, 60% of the Democratic Party's fundraising and 25% of that for the Republican Party's fundraising came from Jewish-funded PACs. According to a Washington Post estimate, Democratic presidential candidates depend on Jewish sources for as much as 60% of money raised from private sources.[49]

Education of politicians

According to Mitchell Bard, Israel lobbyists also educate politicians by

"taking them to Israel on study missions. Once officials have direct exposure to the country, its leaders, geography, and security dilemmas, they typically return more sympathetic to Israel. Politicians also sometimes travel to Israel specifically to demonstrate to the lobby their interest in Israel. Thus, for example, George W. Bush made his one and only trip to Israel before deciding to run for President in what was widely viewed as an effort to win pro-Israel voters' support."[23]

Think tanks

Mearsheimer and Walt state that "pro-Israel figures have established a commanding presence at the American Enterprise Institute, the Center for Security Policy, the Foreign Policy Research Institute, the Heritage Foundation, the Hudson Institute, the Institute for Foreign Policy Analysis, and the Jewish Institute for National Security Affairs (JINSA). These think tanks are all decidedly pro-Israel and include few, if any, critics of US support for the Jewish state."[50]

In 2002, the Brookings Institution founded the Saban Center for Middle East Policy, named after Haim Saban, an Israeli-American media proprietor, who donated $13 million toward its establishment.[51] Saban has stated of himself, "I'm a one issue guy, and my issue is Israel",[52] and was described by the New York Times as a "tireless cheerleader for Israel."[52] The Centre is directed by AIPAC's former deputy director of research, Martin Indyk.

Frontline, an Indian current affairs magazine, asked rhetorically why the administration of George W Bush that seemed "so eager to please [Bush's] Gulf allies, particularly the Saudis, go out of its way to take the side of Ariel Sharon's Israel? Two public policy organizations give us a sense of an answer: the Washington Institute for Near East Policy (WINEP) and the Jewish Institute for National Security Affairs."[53] Frontline reported that "WINEP tended to toe the line of whatever party came to power in Israel" while "JINSA was the U.S. offshoot of the right-wing Likud Party."[53] According to Frontline, JINSA had close ties to the administration of George W Bush in that it "draws from the most conservative hawks in the U.S. establishment for its board of directors"[53] including Vice-President Richard Cheney, and Bush administration appointees John Bolton, Douglas Feith, Paul Wolfowitz, Lewis Libby, Zalmay Khalilzad, Richard Armitage and Elliott Abrams. Jason Vest, writing in The Nation,[54] alleges that both JINSA and the Center for Security Policy thinktanks are "underwritten by far-right American Zionists" and that they both "effectively hold there is no difference between US and Israeli national security interests, and that the only way to assure continued safety and prosperity for both countries is through hegemony in the Middle East – a hegemony achieved with the traditional cold war recipe of feints, force, clientism and covert action."

Media and public discourse

Stephen Zunes writes that "mainstream and conservative Jewish organizations have mobilized considerable lobbying resources, financial contributions from the Jewish community, and citizen pressure on the news media and other forums of public discourse in support of the Israeli government."[35] Journalist Michael Massing writes that "Jewish organizations are quick to detect bias in the coverage of the Middle East, and quick to complain about it. That's especially true of late. As The Jewish Daily Forward observed in late April [2002], 'rooting out perceived anti-Israel bias in the media has become for many American Jews the most direct and emotional outlet for connecting with the conflict 6,000 miles away.'"[55]

The Forward related how one individual felt:

"'There's a great frustration that American Jews want to do something,' said Ira Youdovin, executive vice president of the Chicago Board of Rabbis. 'In 1947, some number would have enlisted in the Haganah, ' he said, referring to the pre-state Jewish armed force. 'There was a special American brigade. Nowadays you can't do that. The battle here is the hasbarah war,' Youdovin said, using a Hebrew term for public relations. 'We're winning, but we're very much concerned about the bad stuff.'"[56]

Indicative of the diversity of opinion is a 2003 Boston Globe profile of the CAMERA media watchdog group in which Mark Jurkowitz observes: "To its supporters, CAMERA is figuratively - and perhaps literally - doing God's work, battling insidious anti-Israeli bias in the media. But its detractors see CAMERA as a myopic and vindictive special interest group trying to muscle its views into media coverage."[57] A former spokesman for the Israeli Consulate in New York City said that the result of this lobbying of the media was: "Of course, a lot of self-censorship goes on. Journalists, editors, and politicians are going to think twice about criticizing Israel if they know they are going to get thousands of angry calls in a matter of hours. The Jewish lobby is good at orchestrating pressure."[58]

In addition to traditional media, Israeli public relations on the internet also is targeted with software called the Megaphone desktop tool, which is designed and promoted by pro-Israel interest groups.[59] Regarding the 'Megaphone', the Times Online reported in 2006 that the Israeli Foreign Ministry "ordered trainee diplomats to track websites and chatrooms so that networks of US and European groups with hundreds of thousands of Jewish activists can place supportive messages."[60] According to a Jerusalem Post article on the 'Megaphone', Israel's Foreign Ministry was "urging supporters of Israel everywhere to become cyberspace soldiers 'in the new battleground for Israel's image.'"[61] Christopher Williams wrote for The Register: "However it is used, Megaphone is effectively a high-tech exercise in ballot-stuffing. We're calling it lobbyware ."[62]

College campuses

There are a number of organizations that focus on what could be called "pro-Israel activism" on college campuses. With the outbreak of the Al-Aqsa Intifada in 2001, these groups have been increasingly visible. In 2002, an umbrella organization, that includes many of these groups, known as the Israel on Campus Coalition was formed as a result of what they felt were "the worrisome rise in anti-Israel activities on college campuses across North America". The mission of the Israel on Campus Coalition is to "foster support for Israel" and "cultivate an Israel friendly university environment".[63] Members of the Israel on Campus Coalition include the Zionist Organization of America, AIPAC, Americans for Peace Now, the Anti-defamation League, Kesher, the Union of Progressive Zionists (Ameinu and Meretz USA/Partners for Progressive Israel), and a number of other organizations. There has been at least one conflict among these groups, when the right wing Zionist Organization of America unsuccessfully attempted to remove the left wing Union of Progressive Zionists from the coalition when the latter group sponsored lectures by a group of former Israel Defense Forces soldiers who criticized the Israeli Occupation of the West Bank and Gaza.[64]

However, there are some who feel that pro-Israel activism on college campuses can cross the line from advocacy to outright intimidation. One highly publicized accusation comes from former President Jimmy Carter, who complained of great difficulty in gaining access to a number of universities to discuss his new book Palestine Peace Not Apartheid. In October 2007 about 300 academics under the name The Ad Hoc Committee to Defend the University issued a statement calling for academic freedom from political pressure, in particular from groups portraying themselves as defenders of Israel.[65] In December 2007, student leaders who advocate pro-Israel films and groups on college campuses were eligible for being hired as "emissaries of the Jewish state" for their work and would receive up to $1000 a year for their efforts.[66]

Coordination with Israeli officials

Rabbi Alexander Schindler, former chair of the Conference of Presidents, told an Israeli magazine in 1976, "The Presidents' Conference and its members have been instruments of official governmental Israeli policy. It was seen as our task to receive directions from government circles and to do our best no matter what to affect the Jewish community." Hymen Bookbinder, a high-ranking official of the American Jewish Committee, said "Unless something is terribly pressing, really critical or fundamental, you parrot Israel's line in order to retain American support. As American Jews, we don't go around saying Israel is wrong about its policies."[67]

Bard writes that "by framing the issues in terms of the national interest, AIPAC can attract broader support than would ever be possible if it was perceived to represent only the interests of Israel. This does not mean AIPAC does not have a close relationship with Israeli officials, it does, albeit unofficially. Even so, the lobby some times comes into conflict with the Israeli government."[23]

Responses to attacks on Israel and the Jews

Zunes writes that "assaults on critics of Israeli policies have been more successful in limiting open debate, but this gagging censorship effect stems more from ignorance and liberal guilt than from any all-powerful Israel lobby."[35] He goes on to explain that while "some criticism of Israel really is rooted in anti-Semitism", it is his opinion that some members of the Israel lobby cross the line by labeling intellectually honest critics of Israel as antisemitic.[35] Zunes argues that the mainstream and conservative Jewish organizations have "created a climate of intimidation against many who speak out for peace and human rights or who support the Palestinians' right of self-determination."[35] Zunes has been on the receiving end of this criticism himself "As a result of my opposition to US support for the Israeli government's policies of occupation, colonization and repression, I have been deliberately misquoted, subjected to slander and libel, and falsely accused of being "anti-Semitic" and "supporting terrorism"; my children have been harassed and my university's administration has been bombarded with calls for my dismissal."[35]

In an opinion piece for The Guardian, Jimmy Carter wrote that mainstream American politics does not give equal time to the Palestinian side of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and that this is due at least in part to AIPAC.[83] George Soros pointed out that there are risks associated with what was in his opinion a suppression of debate:

"I do not subscribe to the myths propagated by enemies of Israel and I am not blaming Jews for anti-Semitism. Anti-Semitism predates the birth of Israel. Neither Israel's policies nor the critics of those policies should be held responsible for anti-Semitism. At the same time, I do believe that attitudes toward Israel are influenced by Israel's policies, and attitudes toward the Jewish community are influenced by the pro-Israel lobby's success in suppressing divergent views."[84]

In his book, The Deadliest Lies, Abraham Foxman referred to the notion that the pro-Israel lobby is trying to censor criticism of Israel as a "canard."[85] Foxman writes that the Jewish community is capable of telling the difference between legitimate criticism of Israel "and the demonization, deligitization, and double standards employed against Israel that is either inherently anti-Semitic or generates an environment of anti-Semitism."[85] Jonathan Rosenblum expressed similar thoughts: "Indeed, if there were an Israel lobby, and labeling all criticism of Israel as anti-Semitic were its tactic, the steady drumbeat of criticism of Israel on elite campuses and in the elite press would be the clearest proof of its inefficacy."[86]

Alan Dershowitz wrote that he welcomes "reasoned, contextual and comparative criticism of Israeli policies and actions."[87] If one of the goals of the pro-Israel lobby was to censor criticism of Israel, Dershowitz writes, "it would prove that 'the Lobby' is a lot less powerful than the authors would have us believe."[87] Dershowitz himself, claims to have written several critical pieces on specific Israeli policies.[citation needed] Dershowitz disagrees with those who believe that the media is uncritical of Israel and cites the frequent New York Times editorials and even an editorial in The Jewish Daily Forward against some of Israel's more right of center policies as proof.[citation needed] Dershowitz also denies that any significant, mainstream leader in the American Jewish community equates criticism of Israel with antisemitism.[citation needed]

Debates

Criticism of the term

According to William Safire, the term "Israel Lobby" came into use in the 1970s and, similar to the term "China lobby", carries "the pejorative connotation of manipulation."[88] He also writes that supporters of Israel gauge the degree of perceived animus towards the Jewish State by the term chosen to refer to the lobby: "pro-Israel lobby" being used by those with the mildest opposition, followed by "Israel lobby", with the term "Jewish lobby" being employed by those with the most extreme anti-Israel opinions.[88]

According to Walt and Mearsheimer, "Using the term 'Israel lobby' is itself somewhat misleading...One might more accurately dub this the 'pro-Israel community'..." since this is not the lobby of a foreign country, rather, it is composed of Americans.[89][90] However, justifying their usage of the term, they write "because many of the key [pro-Israel] groups do lobby, and because the term 'Israel lobby' is used in common parlance (along with labels such as the 'farm lobby', 'insurance lobby', 'gun lobby' and other ethnic lobbies), we have chosen to employ it here."[91]

Degree of influence

Progressive journalist John R. MacArthur writes

Given my dissident politics, I should be up in arms about the Israel lobby. Not only have I supported the civil rights of the Palestinians over the years, but two of my principal intellectual mentors were George W. Ball and Edward Said, both severe critics of Israel and its extra-special relationship with the United States.

Nowadays I ought to be even bolder in my critique, since the silent agreement suppressing candid discussions about Israeli-U.S. relations has recently been shaken by some decidedly mainstream figures. These critics of Israel and its American agents include John Mearsheimer and Stephen Walt, of the University of Chicago, and Harvard's Kennedy School, respectively; Tony Judt, a historian at New York University; and former President Jimmy Carter.

Somehow, though, I can't shake the idea that the Israel lobby, no matter how powerful, isn't all it is cracked up to be, particularly where it concerns the Bush administrations past and present. Indeed, when I think of pernicious foreign lobbies with disproportionate sway over American politics, I can't see past Saudi Arabia and its royal house, led by King Abdullah.[92]

Mearsheimer and Walt have collected and quoted some of the lobbyists' comments on their organizations' political capital. For example, Mearsheimer and Walt quote Morris Amitay, former AIPAC director as saying, "It's almost politically suicidal ... for a member of Congress who wants to seek reelection to take any stand that might be interpreted as anti-policy of the conservative Israeli government."[93] They also quote a Michael Massing article in which a staffer[who?] sympathetic to Israel said, "We can count on well over half the House – 250 to 300 members – to do reflexively whatever AIPAC wants."[94] Similarly they cite former AIPAC official Steven Rosen illustrating AIPAC's power for Jeffrey Goldberg by putting a napkin in front of him and saying, "In twenty-four hours, we could have the signatures of seventy senators on this napkin."[95]

However, some U.S. government officials have stated that the Israel lobby is not so powerful that they control U.S. foreign policy. Former Secretary of State George Shultz stated "... the notion that U.S. policy on Israel and Middle East is the result of [the Israel lobby's] influence is simply wrong."[96][97] Dennis B. Ross, former U.S. ambassador and chief peace negotiator in the Middle East under Bill Clinton, who is now an official at WINEP, wrote:

"never in the time that I led the American negotiations on the Middle East peace process did we take a step because 'the lobby' wanted us to. Nor did we shy away from one because 'the lobby' opposed it. That is not to say that AIPAC and others have no influence. They do. But they don't distort U.S. policy or undermine American interests."[98]

Individual journalists each have their own opinions on how powerful the Israel lobby is. Glenn Frankel wrote: "On Capitol Hill the Israel lobby commands large majorities in both the House and Senate."[99] Michael Lind produced a cover piece on the Israel lobby for the UK publication Prospect in 2002 which concluded, "The truth about America's Israel lobby is this: it is not all-powerful, but it is still far too powerful for the good of the U.S. and its alliances in the Middle East and elsewhere.".[100] Tony Judt, writing in the New York Times, asked rhetorically, "Does the Israel Lobby affect our foreign policy choices? Of course – that is one of its goals. [...] But does pressure to support Israel distort American decisions? That's a matter of judgment."[101]

Mitchell Bard has conducted a study which attempts to roughly quantify the influence of the Israel lobby on 782 policy decisions, over the period of 1945 to 1984, in order to move the debate on its influence away from simple anecdotes. He

"found the Israeli lobby won; that is, achieved its policy objective, 60 percent of the time. The most important variable was the president's position. When the president supported the lobby, it won 95 percent of the time. At first glance it appears the lobby was only successful because its objectives coincided with those of the president, but the lobby's influence was demonstrated by the fact that it still won 27 percent of the cases when the president opposed its position."[23]

According to a public opinion poll by Zogby International of 1,036 likely voters from October 10–12, 2006, 40% of American voters at least somewhat believe the Israel lobby has been a key factor in going to war in Iraq. The following poll question was used: "Question: Do you strongly agree, somewhat agree, somewhat disagree, or strongly disagree that the work of the Israel lobby on Congress and the Bush administration has been a key factor for going to war in Iraq and now confronting Iran?"[102]

In March 2009, Charles W. Freeman, Jr., criticized the lobby after withdrawing his candidacy for the chair of the National Intelligence Council.[103][104] Freeman said, "The libels on me and their easily traceable email trails show conclusively that there is a powerful lobby determined to prevent any view other than its own from being aired .... The tactics of the Israel Lobby plumb the depths of dishonor and indecency .... The aim of this Lobby is control of the policy process ...."[105] Members of Congress denied that the Israel lobby had a significant role in their opposition to Freeman's appointment; they cite Freeman's ties with the Saudi and Chinese governments, objections to certain statements made about the Palestinian territories and his lack of experience as the reasons for their opposition.[106][107]

Comparison to other lobbies

The closest comparison is probably to other ethnic-group based lobbies that attempt to influence American foreign policy decisions such as the Cuban-American lobby, the African-American lobby in foreign policy and the Armenian American lobby, although the lobby has also been compared to the National Rifle Association (NRA) and the lobby for the Pharmaceutical industry.[108][109] In comparing the Israel Lobby to the NRA, Glenn Frankel concludes that "Nevertheless, the Israel lobby, and AIPAC in particular, gained a reputation as the National Rifle Association of foreign policy: a hard-edged, pugnacious bunch that took names and kept score. But in some ways it was even stronger. The NRA's support was largely confined to right-wing Republicans and rural Democrats. But AIPAC made inroads in both parties and both ends of the ideological spectrum."[99]

Zunes describes that some groups who lobby against current U.S. policy on Israel "have accepted funding from autocratic Arab regimes, thereby damaging their credibility" while others have "taken hard-line positions that not only oppose the Israeli occupation but challenge Israel's very right to exist and are therefore not taken seriously by most policymakers."[35] Zunes writes that many lobbying groups on the left, such as Peace Action, are "more prone to complain about the power of the Israel lobby and its affiliated PACs than to do serious lobbying on this issue or condition its own PAC contributions on support for a more moderate U.S. policy" in the region.[35] Noam Chomsky, political activist and professor of linguistics at MIT, writes that "there are far more powerful interests that have a stake in what happens in the Persian Gulf region than does AIPAC [or the Lobby generally], such as the oil companies, the arms industry and other special interests whose lobbying influence and campaign contributions far surpass that of the much-vaunted Zionist lobby and its allied donors to congressional races."[110]

However, while comparing the Israel Lobby with the Arab Lobby, Mitchell Bard notes that "From the beginning, the Arab lobby has faced not only a disadvantage in electoral politics but also in organization. There are several politically oriented groups, but many of these are one man operations with little financial or popular support."[111] The Arab American Institute is involved in supporting Arab-American political candidates, but, according to award-winning journalist Ray Hanania "it's nothing compared to the funds that AIPAC raises not just for Jewish American congressmen, but for congressmen who support Israel."[112] Furthermore, Arab American lobbies face a problem of motivation; Jewish Americans feel the need to support their homeland (as well as other states in the Middle East who have signed peace treaties with Israel) in active, organized ways. Arab Americans do not appear to have a similar motivation when it comes to their own homelands.[113]

Israel and U.S. interests

Friendly relations between Israel and the U.S. has been and continues to be a tenet of both American and Israeli foreign policy. Israel receives bipartisan support in the U.S. Congress. The Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs states that U.S. and Israel share common "economic, political, strategic, and diplomatic concerns" and that the countries exchange "intelligence and military information" and cooperate in an effort to halt international terrorism and illegal drug trade.[114] Furthermore, a majority of American citizens view Israel favorably.[115]

In 2011, the Washington Institute for Near East Policy (a think tank founded by "a small group of visionary Americans committed to advancing U.S. interests in the Middle East") argued that the U.S.-Israel relationship is "A Strategic Asset for the United States."[116][117] In discussing their report, Walter B. Slocombe said that while in the popular imagination, the U.S.-Israel relationship is only good for Israel, Israel provides enormous assistance to the United States, including military expertise which has saved American lives in Iraq and Afghanistan. Robert D. Blackwill countered the claim that the U.S.-Israel relationship significantly damages the relationship between the United States and the Arab world. He asked rhetorically:

"Would Saudi Arabia's policies toward the United States be markedly different in practice if Washington entered into a sustained crisis with Israel over the Palestine issue during which the bilateral relationship between the United States and Israel went into steep, systemic decline? In that instance, would Riyadh lower the price of oil? Would it stop hedging its regional bets concerning U.S. attempts to coerce Iran into freezing its nuclear weapons program? Would it regard U.S. policy toward Afghanistan any less critically? Would it view American democracy promotion in the Middle East more favorably? Would it be more inclined to reform its internal governmental processes to be more in line with U.S. preferences? Walt [Slocombe] and I judge the answer to all these questions [to be] 'No.'"[117]

When asked how this report could so flatly contradict the Walt and Mearsheimer thesis, Slocombe responded, "There is so much error in the world," and added, "I think it would be interesting to ask them whether they make the same contrary argument about the other countries to whom we also provide something like this kind of support. There are obviously differences, but the principle is the same."[117]

The Israel Project noted in 2009 that "when you're talking to Americans, you need to know that when you don't support a two-state solution you risk having a major public relations challenge in America and Europe."[118]

In a 2008 editorial, Israeli-American historian and author Michael B. Oren wrote that Israel and the United States are natural allies, despite what the opposition from "much of American academia and influential segments of the media." Oren claimed this was because Israel and the United States shared similar values such as "respect for civic rights and the rule of law" and democracy. Israel and the United States share military intelligence in order to fight terrorism.[119] Oren also noted that "more than 70% of [Americans], according to recent polls, favor robust ties with the Jewish state."[119]

In his 2007 review of Mearsheimer and Walt's book, Jeffrey Goldberg wrote:

"Forty years of polling has consistently shown that Americans support Israel in its conflict with the Arabs. ... Both Israel and America were founded by refugees from European religious intolerance; both are rooted in a common religious tradition; Israel is a lively democracy in a part of the world that lacks democracy; Israelis seem self-reliant in the manner of American pioneers; and Israel's enemies, in many cases, seem to be America's enemies as well."[120]

Israeli academic and political activist Jeff Halper said that "Israel is able to pursue its occupation only because of its willingness to serve Western (mainly U.S.) imperial interests" and that rather than influencing the United States via the lobby, Israel is actually "a handmaiden of American Empire."[35] According to political scientists John Mearsheimer and Stephen Walt, though, "the combination of unwavering U.S. support for Israel and the related effort to spread democracy throughout the region has inflamed Arab and Islamic opinion and jeopardized U.S. security." They alleged that while "one might assume that the bond between the two countries is based on shared strategic interests or compelling moral imperatives....neither of those explanations can account for the remarkable level of material and diplomatic support that the United States provides to Israel."[121] Robert Satloff cited the events of May–June 2010 (in which Israel stopped a flotilla meant to break its blockade of the Gaza Strip and yet, a few days later, every country expected to vote U.N. sanctions against Iran ended up voting as the U.S. wanted them to) as a counter-example that disproved that point of view.[122] Goldberg similarly cited the Arab Spring to counter Walt and Mearsheimer's point:

"It seems as if the Arab masses have been much less upset about Israel's treatment of the Palestinians than they have been about their own treatment at the hands of their unelected leaders. If Israel ceased to exist tomorrow, Arabs would still be upset at the quality of their leadership (and they would still blame the United States for supporting the autocrats who make them miserable); Iran would still continue its drive to expunge American influence from the Middle East; and al Qaeda would still seek to murder Americans and other Westerners."[123]

In 2006 former U.N. weapons inspector in Iraq Scott Ritter published "Target Iran: The Truth About the White House's Plans for Regime Change" (ISBN 978-1-56025-936-7). In his book he stated that certain Israelis and pro-Israel elements in the United States were trying to push the Bush administration into war with Iran.[124] He also accuses the U.S. pro-Israel lobby of dual loyalty and outright espionage (see Lawrence Franklin espionage scandal).[125]

Media coverage of lobby

American journalist Michael Massing argues that there is a lack of media coverage on the Israel lobby and posits this explanation: "Why the blackout? For one thing, reporting on these groups is not easy. AIPAC's power makes potential sources reluctant to discuss the organization on the record, and employees who leave it usually sign pledges of silence. AIPAC officials themselves rarely give interviews, and the organization even resists divulging its board of directors."[55] Massing writes that in addition to AIPAC's efforts to maintain a low profile, "journalists, meanwhile, are often loath to write about the influence of organized Jewry. [...] In the end, though, the main obstacle to covering these groups is fear."[55] Steven Rosen, a former director of foreign-policy issues for AIPAC, explained to Jeffrey Goldberg of The New Yorker that "a lobby is like a night flower: it thrives in the dark and dies in the sun."[126]

According to Gal Beckerman there are many individual pro-Israel op-ed columnists, but the argument that the media as a whole is part of the Israel lobby cannot be concluded from Mearsheimer and Walt's cherry picked evidence:

"Walt and Mearsheimer undermine our intelligence by assuming that we are simply being manipulated.... If the lobby is so influential over the media, how were Walt and Mearsheimer given such space in every major news outlet in the country to express their 'dangerous' views? You want to tell me that a force that can impel us to got [sic] to war in Iraq can't find a way to censor two academics? Not much of a lobby, now is it?"[127]

Writing for the Columbia Journalism Review, Beckerman cites examples of op-eds critical of Israel from several major U.S. newspapers and concludes that an equally compelling argument could be made that the Israel lobby doesn't control the media. Itamar Rabinovich, writing for the Brookings Institution, wrote, "The truth of the matter is that, insofar as the lobby ever tries to intimidate and silence, the effort usually causes more damage than it redresses. In any event, the power of the lobby to do that is very modest."[128]

On The Diane Rehm Show (December 11, 2006), Middle East experts Hisham Melhem, Lebanese journalist and Washington Bureau Chief for Al-Arabia, and Dennis Ross, a Jewish-American diplomat working as counselor Washington Institute for Near East Policy, when asked about the pervasive Israeli influence on American foreign policy in the Middle East mentioned in former President Jimmy Carter's 2006 book Palestine: Peace Not Apartheid said: [H. Melhem] "When it comes to Israel [discussing Israeli and/or Jewish American issues], it is still almost a taboo in certain parts, not everywhere...there are certain things that cannot be said about the Israeli government or America's relationship with Israel or about the Israeli lobby. Yes there is, excuse me, there is an Israeli lobby, but when we say an Israeli lobby we are not talking about a Jewish cabal. The Israeli lobby operates the way the NRA operates, a system of rewards and punishment, you help your friends by money, by advocacy and everything, and sometimes they pool money in to the campaigns of those people that they see as friendly to Israel. This is the American game".[129] (radio interview: ≈16:30-20:05)

Trump as the President fully controlled by Jewish lobby

Under Trump, the Israel lobby is a Hydra with many heads

The Trump administration's recent steps in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict should surely lay to rest any doubts about the enormous, and dangerous, power of the Israel lobby in Washington. Under Trump, the lobby has shown it can wield unprecedented influence – even by its usual standards – in flagrant disregard for all apparent US interests.

First, there was the move this month of the US embassy to Jerusalem, not quietly but on the 70th anniversary of the most sensitive day in the Palestinian calendar, Nakba Day. That is when Palestinians commemorate their mass expulsion from their homeland in 1948. By relocating the embassy, Trump gave official US blessing to tearing up the 25-year-old peace process – and in choosing Nakba Day for the move, he rubbed the noses of Palestinians, and by extension the Arab world, in their defeat.

Then, the White House compounded the offence by lauding Israeli snipers who massacred dozens of unarmed Palestinians protesting at the perimeter fence around Gaza the same day. A series of statements issued by the White House could have been written by Israel's far-right prime minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, himself.

At the United Nations, the US blocked a Security Council resolution calling for the massacre to be investigated, while Nikki Haley, Trump's UN envoy, observed to fellow delegates: "No country in this chamber would act with more restraint than Israel has."

None of these moves served any obvious US national interest, nor did Trump's decision the previous week to tear up the 2015 nuclear accord with Iran that has long been reviled by the Israeli government. In fact, quite the contrary: These actions risk inflaming tensions to the point of a regional war that could quickly drag in the major powers, or provoke terror attacks on US soil.

It should be recalled that two decades ago, it was impossible even to mention the existence of an Israel lobby in Washington without being labelled an anti-Semite. Paradoxically, Israel's supporters exercised the very power they denied existed, bullying critics into submission by insisting that any talk of an Israel lobby relied on anti-Semitic tropes of Jewish power.

The wall of silence was broken only with the publication in 2006 of a seminal essay – later turned into a book – by two prominent US academics, John Mearsheimer and Stephen Walt. But in a sign of the immense weight of the lobby even as it was being dragged into the light, the pair were unable to find a publisher in the US. Instead, the essay found a home across the Atlantic in the prestigious, if obscure, London Review of Books. One of the pair, Stephen Walt, has publicly admitted that his career suffered as a result. Since then, a little leeway has opened up on the subject. Even New York Times columnist Thomas Friedman, a staunch advocate for Israel, has conceded the lobby's existence. In 2011, he explained a well-established, if astounding, ritual of US politics: that the Congress greets every visiting Israeli prime minister more rapturously than the American president himself.

Friedman observed: "I sure hope that Israel's prime minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, understands that the standing ovation he got in Congress this year was not for his politics. That ovation was bought and paid for by the Israel lobby."

Friedman was alluding to the network of Jewish leadership organisations and political action committees in the US, all of them hawkishly pro-Israel, that at election time can channel large sums of money for or against Congressional candidates.

It is not that these pro-Israel organisations control the Congress. It is that they have mastered the techniques of political intimidation. They understand and exploit a flawed American system that has allowed lobbies and their money to dictate the agendas of most US lawmakers. Congresspeople are vulnerable as individuals – not only to the loss of donations, but to a generously funded opponent.

In Trump's case, the follow-the-money principle could not have been clearer. In the early stages of his battle to become the Republican party candidate for president, when most assumed he stood no chance and he was funding the campaign himself, he was relatively critical of Israel. Hard as it is to believe now, he promised to be "neutral" on the Israel-Palestine issue; expressed doubts about whether it made sense to hand Israel billions of dollars annually in military aid; backed a two-state solution; and refused to commit to recognising Jerusalem as Israel's capital.

All of that got ditched the moment he needed big funders for his presidential bid. The kingmaker in the Republican party is Sheldon Adelson, the casino billionaire and champion of the kind of Israeli ultra-nationalist, anti-Arab politics in which Netanyahu excels. Adelson likes Netanyahu so much he even bought him a newspaper, Israel Hayom, which Adelson has grown into the largest-circulation daily in Israel.

In the end, Adelson backed Trump's election campaign to the tune of $35m. It was the need for Adelson's support that ensured Trump appointed David Friedman, a long-time benefactor of the illegal Jewish settlements in the West Bank, in the supposedly non-partisan position of US ambassador to Israel. And it was Adelson who was among the honoured guests at the opening of the US embassy in Jerusalem this month.

Those who accuse anyone raising the issue of the Israel lobby of anti-Semitism either misunderstand or intentionally misrepresent what is being claimed.

No one apart from easily identifiable Jew haters is updating the century-old Protocols of the Elders of Zion, a notorious forgery by supporters of the Russian czar supposedly proving that "the Jews" sought world domination through control of the banks and the media. For starters, the argument for the existence of an Israel lobby does not refer to Jews at all. It is about a country, Israel, and its outsize influence over the policies of the US.

Other countries or groups of US citizens try to exercise such influence, either through similar lobbies or through subterfuge.

No one would deny there is a Cuba lobby that helped influence US policy in seeking to oust revolutionary leader Fidel Castro. And most US lawmakers are currently frothing at the mouth about what they see as covert Russian efforts to influence US politics to Moscow's advantage.

Why would we expect Israel to be any different? The question isn't whether the lobby exists, but why the US political system is doing nothing to protect itself from its interference.

Rather than exposing and confronting the Israel lobby, however, US presidents have more typically bent to its will. That was only too obvious, for example, when Barack Obama folded in his early battle with Netanyahu to limit the expansion of illegal Jewish settlements in the West Bank.

But under Trump, the Israel lobby has come to exercise unrivalled power, because it is now far more than just one lobby. It is a five-headed Hydra worthy of Greek mythology, and only one of its heads relates directly to Israel or organised American Jewry.

In fact, the lobby's power now derives not chiefly from Israel. Since Trump's election, the Israel lobby has managed to absorb and mobilise an additional four powerful lobbies – and to a degree not seen before. They are: the Christian evangelicals, the alt-right, the military-industrial complex, and the Saudi Arabia lobby.

Domestically, Trump's election victory depended on his ability to rally to his side two groups that are profoundly committed to Israel, even though they are largely indifferent, or actively hostile, to the Jews who live there.

Leaders of the US alt-right – a loose coalition of white supremacist and neo-Nazi groups – are infatuated with Israel but typically dislike Jews. That sentiment has been encapsulated by alt-right leader Richard Spencer, who describes himself as a "white Zionist".

In short, the alt-right treasures Israel because it has preserved a long-discredited model of a fortress-like, belligerent racial homeland. They want the US reserved exclusively for an imagined "white" community, just as Israel defines itself as representing an exclusive Jewish community.

Trump's reliance on the alt-right vote was highlighted by the early appointment to his administration of several leading figures associated with the movement, including Steve Bannon, Stephen Miller, Michael Flynn, Julia Hahn and Sebastian Gorka.

But more significant still has been the role of evangelicals. That is why Mike Pence, a devout Christian, was chosen as Trump's running mate. Trump's team understood that the votes of tens of millions of Americans were assured if Trump pandered to their prejudices.

And happily for Netanyahu, their keenest prejudice is fanatical support for Israel – and not just for Israel inside its internationally recognised borders, but also for Greater Israel, which includes many dozens of illegal Jewish settlements built on Palestinian land.

The Christian Zionists believe that Jews must be corralled into their biblical homeland to fulfil divine prophecy and bring about the Second Coming of the Messiah.

It was primarily for the sake of these Christian Zionists that Trump moved the US embassy to Jerusalem. And it was why two evangelical pastors with a history of anti-Semitic remarks, John Hagee and Robert Jeffress, were called on to offer their blessings at the opening ceremony.

Trump's indebtedness to the evangelicals is one reason to be worried about his policies in the region. The Christian Zionists have no interest in fairness, justice or international law. Rather, they are prepared to inflame tensions in the Middle East – and even trigger Armageddon itself – if they think it might benefit Israel and further God's prophecy.

The military-industrial complex has enjoyed a much longer, if more veiled, influence on US politics. A former US army general who became president, Dwight Eisenhower, warned of the looming threat posed by an increasingly dominant corporate sector dependent on war profits back in 1961.

Since then, the power of these corporations has accreted and expanded in precisely the ways Eisenhower feared. And that has only helped Israel.

In the early 1980s, Noam Chomsky, the dissident US intellectual, observed in his book The Fateful Triangle that Israel and the US had different conceptions of the Middle East.

The US was then what Chomsky termed a "status quo power" that was mostly interested in preserving the existing regional order. Israel, on the other hand, was committed to destabilisation of the region – its Balkanisation – as a strategy to extend its hegemony over feuding, internally divided neighbouring states.

Today, it is not hard to see which vision of the Middle East prevailed. The US-headquartered war industries lobbied for – and have profited enormously from – an endless, global "war on terror" that needs their expensive killing toys. The West has even been able to market its wars of aggression against other sovereign states as "humanitarian" in nature.

The benefits to the military industries can be gauged by examining the ever-surging profits of large US arms manufacturers such as Lockheed Martin and Raytheon over the past decade.

Israel has not only benefited from the sanctioning and dismemberment of regional rivals, such as Syria, Iraq and Iran, but it has exploited the opportunity to make itself indispensable to these war-profiting industries.

It has, for example, been the linchpin in developing and refining new ways to exploit the cultivation of fear – most significantly, the ever-expanding "homeland security" industry.

Using the occupied Palestinian territories for experimentation, Israel has specialised in developing surveillance and biometric technologies, lethal and non-lethal crowd control methods, complex incarceration systems, psychological profiling of subjugated populations, and highly dubious redefinitions of international law to lift existing restraints on war crimes and wars of aggression.

That has proved invaluable to the military industries that have sought to profit from new wars and occupations across the Middle East. But it has also meant Israel's expertise is much sought-after by US political and security elites who wish to pacify and control restless domestic populations.

Israel's encouragement of the Middle East's destabilisation has raised new threats in the US – of protest, immigration and terrorism – for which Israel has then supplied readymade solutions.

Israel has helped to rationalise the militarisation of police forces in the US and elsewhere, and provided the training. It has also gradually introduced to the US and other Western countries the kind of racial and political profiling that has long been standard in Israel.

That is the reason why Israeli academic Jeff Halper has warned of the danger that the "war on terror" could ultimately turn all of us into Palestinians.

But perhaps the most significant additional boost to Israel's power in Washington has been its newfound and barely concealed alliance with Saudi Arabia.

For decades, the oil lobby in the US was seen as a counterweight to the Israel lobby. That was why Israel's supporters traditionally reviled the US State Department, which was viewed as an Arabist outpost.

No longer. Trump, ever the businessman, has cultivated even stronger ties to the Saudis, hoping that arms and technology sales will revive the US economy and his political fortunes.

During a visit by Saudi Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman to the US in March, Trump noted: "Saudi Arabia is a very wealthy nation, and they're going to give the United States some of that wealth hopefully, in the form of jobs, in the form of the purchase of the finest military equipment anywhere in the world."

But Washington's close ties to the Saudis are increasingly a boon to Israel rather than an impediment. The two have found common cause in their feverish opposition to Iran, and its Shia allies in Syria and Lebanon, and their determination to prevent them from gaining more power in the region.

Israel wants a military hegemony over the Middle East that Iran could undermine, while Riyadh needs an ideological and financial hegemony that Iran might be able to disrupt.

And the Palestinians – the only issue that continues formally to divide Israel and Saudi Arabia – are increasingly viewed by bin Salman as a chess piece he is ready to sacrifice in exchange for Iran's destruction.

Trump tore up the nuclear accord agreed by Obama with Iran with such incendiary abandon this month because his two Middle East allies jointly demanded he do so.

And the indications are that he may do worse – even attacking Iran – if the pressure from Israel and the Saudis reaches a critical mass.

All of these various lobbies have long wielded significant power in Washington, but remained largely separate. In recent years, their interests have come to overlap considerably, making Israel ever more unassailable in US politics.

Under Trump, their agendas have aligned so completely that this multi-headed lobby has as good as collectively captured the presidency on matters that concern it most.

That is not to say that the Israel lobby will not face future challenges. Other pressures are emerging in reaction to the unaccountable power of the Israel lobby, including progressive voices in US politics that are, for the first time, breaking with the long-standing bipartisan nature of the debate about Israel.

Bernie Sanders's unexpected surge in the Democratic nomination race for the presidency, the rise of the international boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) movement, the growing alienation of young US Jews from Israel, and the US public's ever-greater exposure on social media to Israel's crimes are signs of trends it will be difficult for Israel to counter or reverse.

Israel is getting its way at the moment. But hubris is a fault we have been warned about since the time of the ancient Greeks. Israel may yet come to learn a little humility – the hard way.

Israel lobby, Israel-US


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Old News ;-)

[Jul 22, 2019] The thing I find most intriguing about the Epstein affair is possibility that it provides a "hook" for the US intelligence community to really go after the Israeli lobby.

Notable quotes:
"... What Epstein has been up to is so obscene that it is now toxic to be associated with him. Everyone who claimed to be his friend are now running a mile from him. ..."
"... But what if it is revealed that he had created this cesspool at the direction of Israel i.e. that the main motivation for this honey-pot was to provide Israel with blackmail material. ..."
"... If that happened then a politician would run a mile at the mere sight of a lobby bag-man, because to be associated with them is to be tarred in a way that no amount of money could ever overcome. ..."
"... I am certain that there are still honest people in the US intelligence community, and I would bet very good money that they are looking very closely at this as a chance to stab the Israel lobby through the heart with a wooden stake. ..."
Jul 22, 2019 | www.moonofalabama.org

Yeah, Right , Jul 22 2019 10:55 utc | 118

The thing I find most intriguing about the Epstein affair is possibility that it provides a "hook" for the US intelligence community to really go after the Israeli lobby.

After all, going up against the *money* of the lobby is a forlorn hope - there is no way to fight them on that battlefield.

But this? No, this is different.

What Epstein has been up to is so obscene that it is now toxic to be associated with him. Everyone who claimed to be his friend are now running a mile from him.

But what if it is revealed that he had created this cesspool at the direction of Israel i.e. that the main motivation for this honey-pot was to provide Israel with blackmail material.

If that happened then a politician would run a mile at the mere sight of a lobby bag-man, because to be associated with them is to be tarred in a way that no amount of money could ever overcome.

I am certain that there are still honest people in the US intelligence community, and I would bet very good money that they are looking very closely at this as a chance to stab the Israel lobby through the heart with a wooden stake.

col from Oz , Jul 22 2019 13:54 utc | 146

Year right I have been saying for years that Epstein is a Mossad operation.

[Jul 17, 2019] MAGA. Bow before Netanyahu and present America to the zionists on a silver tray. You MAGA red necks are becoming a joke.

Jul 17, 2019 | www.unz.com

DESERT FOX , says: July 17, 2019 at 12:29 pm GMT

Trump is a zionist puppet and pretends to be doing something about illegal immigration but he has all the authority under the Constitution to close the border and stop the illegal immigration and since the zionists want open borders , Trump is not doing jackshit about stopping illegal immigration!

The zionists in control of the zio/US want open borders so that they can merge the zio/US with Mexico and zio/Canada into the North American Union similar to the European Union with a new currency the Amero similar to the Euro, and so the borders are going to remain a sieve !

Trump and Helliary and all the politicians , be they demonrats or republicons are all under zionist AIPAC control and the borders will remain a pathway to the destruction of America!

Patrikios Stetsonis , says: July 17, 2019 at 12:42 pm GMT
@follyofwar In case you did not hear it, Philip Giraldi is informing us:

25 Senators in Secret Meeting With Jewish Leaders to Plot Strategy Against Growing Anger Over Influence of Jewish Elites

"On June 5, 16 heads of Jewish organizations joined 25 Democratic senators in a private meeting, which, according to the Times of Israel, is an annual event.

As with last year, the meeting was chaired by Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) and included Sens. Chuck Schumer (D-NY), Ben Cardin (D-MD), Tim Kaine (D-VA), Chris Coons (D-DE), Bob Menendez (D-NJ), Patty Murray (D-WA), Jacky Rosen (D-NV), Ed Markey (D-MA), Michael Bennet (D-CO), Richard Blumenthal (D-CT), Maria Cantwell (D-WA), Tom Carper (D-DE), Bob Casey (PA), Catherine Cortez Masto (D-NV), Dick Durbin (D-IL), Maggie Hassan (D-NH), Mazie Hirono (D-HI), Chris Murphy (D-CT), Patty Murray (D-CT), Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH), Debbie Stabenow (D-MI), Tom Udall (D-NM), Chris Van Hollen (D-MD) and Ron Wyden (D-OR)".

https://russia-insider.com/en/25-senators-secret-meeting-jewish-leaders-plot-strategy-against-growing-anger-over-influence-jewish#.XSyfD369trM.email

Hossein , says: July 17, 2019 at 1:40 pm GMT
MAGA. Bow before Netanyahu and present America to the zionists on a silver tray. You MAGA red necks are becoming a joke.

[Jul 11, 2019] Epstein, Trump and CIA

Jul 11, 2019 | www.moonofalabama.org

Alexander P , Jul 10 2019 19:46 utc | 20

We do not know why Epstein resurfaced, there was no need to re-open the case unless 'they' wanted it to be reopened. Thus, there is definitely a deeper political purpose behind this. As I know the higher ups in both Democrat and Republican Party are in one way or another involved in this (both Clinton and Trump visited his island and I am sure many more prominent high ranking US career politicians), this could indeed be equally dangerous for either political party.

However, I don't think Trump needs convincing with regard to Iran he has been all in on that from day 1 of his presidency and never hesitated a moment to tear up the JCPOA. Bibi was right when he said there was never a US president as friendly towards Israel than Donald Trump. His actions have spoken louder than words. So for this case, we will just have to wait and see what pieces of information they allow the MSM to publish and we will know who they are after or what bigger political goal is at play.


jared , Jul 10 2019 20:03 utc | 27

Something does not smell right about this.
It's not like Epstein was some obscure issue or that Trump was uninformed about the case.
Who would allow a person with such baggage on the team?
And the issue was raised so no possibility it was over-looked.
Congress (including the now concerned repubs) had their shot at him, where was the indignation?
Looks like people were told to disregard the issue, until now.
Now like good soldiers they are all barking alert.
Looks like this guy was a plant, an insurance policy maybe.
Now that policy has been triggered - has Trump failed in playing his role?

Pft , Jul 10 2019 21:22 utc | 51

Trumps ex-pal Epstein linked to intelligence. Makes sense given he has Robert Maxwell's daughter doing the procuring. His was likely a black mail operation run by the intelligence agency

Trumps other ex-pal (partner) was also linked to intelligence. Bayrocks Felix Sater. I imagine some of their business practices could have landed Trump in jail unless like Felix he cooperated

Could Trump himself be a an intelligent asset? Perhaps under duress through his activities with Jeffrey and Felix.

If so, indeed the question is if its Israels or the US agency, or is there any difference now.

I don't pretend to know the answers.

Whats the end game?. Comeys daughter is one of the NY prosecutors.Dershowitz is an Israeli puppet and was behind getting the sealed files opened. Is Clinton and the Dems the target or is it meant to pressure Trump to go hard on Iran or risk something coming out? Something else?

I cant help but wonder why nobody choses to remind us about the case filed against Trump in 2016, where a woman claimed rape at age 13 at Epstein's apartment. Is wasn't covered much at the time either. Apparently silently withdrawn. Curious no? Not even the so called Deep State Media that everyone believes was against Trump. Theydon't seem to want to touch it now either. Maybe its just BS.

Of course, maybe just more distraction as they continue fleecing the bottom 90%

Mr. Lucky , Jul 10 2019 21:28 utc | 53

Epstein was/is Mossad. He ran honey traps for Israel.

This is one of the primary ways the Tribe controls US politicians.

This is how Deep State controls Trump, and why Trump betrayed every campaign promise, except the one to Israel.

Acosta was told to give Epstein a sweetheart deal and to stop the Federal investigation.

For his compliance, he was awarded the job of Labor Secretary in the Trump administration.

fastfreddy , Jul 10 2019 21:30 utc | 54

Billionaire, $6 B, Les Wexner, L Brands, Victoria's Secret.

from Wiki

Wexner had a close relationship with Jeffrey Epstein, who managed Wexner's financial assets. Wexner and Epstein parted when Epstein went to prison.[25] Wexner was believed to be the primary source of Epstein's wealth. [26]

fastfreddy , Jul 10 2019 21:45 utc | 62

I am trying to link Wexner with the Bronfman's (Seagrams Liquor Family) via a source other than the Mega Group (which may not be credible, IDK).Clare Bronfman and NEXIVM.

https://www.rollingstone.com/culture/culture-news/

seagram-heiress-clare-bronfman-pleads-guilty-in-nxivm-sex-slave-case-825103/

https://www.wexnerfoundation.org/about-us/our-offices--staff


Looks like Epstein was running a high powered honey trap to ensnare Politicians, Lawyers, Government employees for the express purpose of promoting the "Greater Israel Project".

KC , Jul 10 2019 21:51 utc | 63

@fastfreddy - While I hesitate to engage in the ubiquitous Israel is at the root of all debacles conjecture, I think you might be onto something there. Sure would be interesting (now or when whatever shakes out of this) to compare the record on votes of importance to Israeli interests of any politician who gets implicated or indicted with who doesn't.

Alaric , Jul 10 2019 21:52 utc | 64

Protecting Epstein and his clients is secondary. The main goal is to protect his billionaire, Jewish, sponsors and whatever state sponsored him. The pleabs cannot know that their gov is corrupt but the bigger secret that must be kept is who is pulling the strings and how they are doing it.

Andrew Kreig , Jul 10 2019 22:02 utc | 68

Am enjoying the insights here and can share a few responses after years of reporting on Epstein, Clinton, Obama, Trump and Barr.

In response to lysias at #34 on Barr's intelligence and corruption cover-up background, here's a full history with links: "Trump Found His Roy Cohn In Deep State Fixer Bill Barr," May 27, 2019. https://www.justice-integrity.org/1659-trump-found-his-roy-cohn-in-deep-state-fixer-bill-barr

Regarding questions on Acosta by Jared at #27, here's a 2017 article showing that the facts were out about Acosta when the Senate confirmed him: "Did Trump Labor Pick Protect Trump, Rich Rapists, Tax Cheats, Crooked Bankers? Do We Find Out Wednesday?" March 14, 2017. http://ow.ly/hk8b309Uerm

Regarding MSM reluctance to mention rape of 12 and 13 year olds by Trump, as several commentators noted, here's a January 2017 wrap up of those matters with leading to other links: "Welcome To Waterbury: The city that holds secrets that could bring down Trump," Jan. 9, 2018. http://www.justice-integrity.org/1445-welcome-to-waterbury-the-city-that-holds-secrets-that-could-bring-down-trump. My colleague Wayne Madsen and I filed a FOIA action today at the U.S. Justice Department seeking further records.

Our view is that this is an intelligence / foreign policy operation and it's likely that Epstein's time has run out, an occupational hazard in that field. Further, Madsen and I have written separate books years ago documenting that all U.S. presidents after Carter -- but not yet Trump as proven -- have been covert assets of the CIA or FBI before -- stress that -- they entered politics. That's the way it is, and helps explain a lot of the complaints in comments above. Trump is in his own category of a corrupt stooge -- that's not necessarily better.

Can recommend excellent 2008 book "Flat Earth News" by longtime UK journalist Nick Davies that describes the deeply flawed nature of MSM from his perspective as a Guardian and other UK journalist, who aptly describes why lies and quarter-truths get printed. That's a longer story but the gist is what many here are suggesting.

last day of grace , Jul 10 2019 23:04 utc | 79

After years of study and many many books I believe the Mossad and CIA are one and the same. The Mossad is very useful when leaving sovereign footprints is verboten--and vice versa.

Jen , Jul 10 2019 23:06 utc | 80

"...'Belongs to intelligence' makes a lot of sense. The question is to which one. A lot of people will says "Mossad" but I don't believe that to be the (full) truth ..."

At the level that Jeffrey Epstein is operating, he is loyal primarily to himself but happily takes his reward from whichever intel agency at any time offers him the most or whose interests might prove the most lucrative for him.

And the interests of American, British, Israeli and other nations' intelligence agencies are surely so entwined that picking them apart is impossible. One thing for sure though: none of them serve the interests of the nations they supposedly work for.

last day of grace , Jul 10 2019 23:09 utc | 81

The function of the CIA/Mossad is to make sure the agenda and the narrative of the Deep State gets served. In that case one could truly blame Epstein's actions on individuals, or groups of individuals who dictate orders to the Mossad/CIA.

Really? , Jul 10 2019 23:31 utc | 85
@29

Epstein is CFR???
What???
HOw can that be?

Mr.Lucky , Jul 10 2019 23:37 utc | 86
Lozion:

I am not implying, I am stating that they absolutely have the goods on Trump.

His supporters knew he was a scum bag when they voted for him, but he promised to stop the invasion and they fell for it.

Why do you think that Trump did a 180 on every campaign promise once elected, except the promise to Israel?

Why do you think that Trump gave Acosta a job after the sweetheart deal?

Ask yourself another question: Why is happening as the election cycle is beginning?

Anyone who says Clinton is in trouble is delusional. Clinton is invincible.

They are going after Trump.

Really? , Jul 10 2019 23:39 utc | 89

"Something does not smell right about this."

Re timing, could it be connected to Mueller soon to be under oath and testifying?

could Mueller be a target of some kind?

jared , Jul 10 2019 23:50 utc | 93

Epstein reminds me of the Bill Browder affair. And the statement: To know who are the rulers not which are the ones you are not permitted to criticize. Or somethinh like that.

Alexander P. , Jul 11 2019 0:09 utc | 99
If indeed they are after Trump as he failed them on 'Iran', then it makes absolute sense that Dershowitz and Cernovich had the records unsealed as both are strong, strong Zionists and supporters of Israel. Getting a judge do the thing they need is just a formality. I agree with some writer above who asked, why the publicity if pressure can be applied in secret without the media being involved? But this may be the stated goal to bring Trump either completely in line now or publicly topple his presidency.

I get why @94 Really? and others would be sceptical at this stage but I know strong powers in the Zionist/Neo-con deep state want a direct confrontation with Iran for myriad number of reasons (stop the BRI, deal a blow to Syria and Hizbollah, take out Israel's No 1 enemy etc, shore up the Petrodollar), and Trump was still the most likely candidate to follow through with this, given his proximity to Zionism. So far he also has dully followed through with everything imaginable, except for actually attacking Iran.

Interesting development indeed. B. Clinton could be collateral damage, at this stage their power is overestimated in my opinion.

karlof1 , Jul 11 2019 0:11 utc | 100
Andrew Kreig @68--

Okay, An "intelligence op," but which one? The Epstein/Mueller link was made several months ago. I don't see any irregularities in the court judgement to order the unsealing as it's been ongoing for almost 2.5 years and involves odd bedfellows. Was Mueller even aware of the attempt to unseal Epstein's case? So many questions!

ekerbacker , Jul 11 2019 0:16 utc | 103

Arnon Milchan? He was Israeli. Should he be punished, absolutely. But you know who should be hung? Robert DeNiro. He knew Arnon Milchan was a spy and kept his mouth shut for decades. He is a POS of epic proportions.

Insofar as Epstein is concerned. It is all about timing. Mueller is set to testify and probably has skeletons in his closet with regards to Epstein's case. He is likely being told implicitly via the Epstein arrest to be on his best behavior by Barr, and Barr at this age probably can care less that Epstein is being sacrificed so he can make his point, particularly since Barr is probably the 2nd most powerful person in the USA right now.

Epstein was extremely likely an Israeli asset. The Israelis have through political power and force convinced many in the US IC that their ship is sailing in the same direction, and that they should be allowed to serve as the US's dog on a leash, and once in a while be unleashed to do what the US won't. So while he was an Israeli asset, his resources (that is compromising material) was often made available to the CIA, and thus Acosta was told that he is an intelligence asset.

The fireworks will start to fly if and when Epstein realizes he is being hung out to dry and won't be saved. But like almost every other case involving such rich and powerful people, don't hold your breath for justice to be served in the US.

Alexander P , Jul 11 2019 0:29 utc | 104
@96 and 33

What does protecting adolescent teenagers from predatory adults have to do with puritanism? Am I understanding this correctly that you advocate sex with minors as long as they have reached biological puberty? Never mind their mental maturity? So sexual relations involving young women is ok what about sexual relations with young men? This has nothing to do with a false pretentious morality but with the fact that teenagers have not yet reached the level of mental maturity that protects them from sexual exploitation that will haunt them for the rest of their lives, never mind their biological functions and ability to conceive or sire children. It is really puzzling that I even need to make these elaborations in here!

Debsisdead , Jul 11 2019 0:35 utc | 105
In many ways this thread is as sickening as the subject it discusses. All sorts of types left and right competing to show that they have the most insight into the forces behind the anal rape of a 12 year old girl See Andrew Kreig's excellent piece which does consider the horror of the acts, rather than just whether or not it plays into the particular vision of 'power politics' each poster invokes). In no instance does anyone express disgust at the actions of these low life scum other than for the corruption of the pols such as Acosta.
The glee which so many have displayed jumping into this horror story because it can be twisted and forced into their own particular theory about "how the world really works" while totally ignoring that these humans who were abducted at age eleven or twelve & then sold like cattle, now inhabit the netherworld of 'the great society' living in the fringes of prosperous cities in a ramshackle 'double wide', reveals a psychic corruption not a million miles away from that of the rapists.

This story is those young boys & girls, anyone who claims to want to use it to force the greedy rapists and warmongering grubs to face justice, will not succeed as long as they waste time speculating who works for who and who is really in control.

Prince Andrew still bludges off taxpayers despite being photographed with his arm around one of his victims, if you're english & really care about stopping this scum, instead of speculating on which shadowy 'palace spokesman suggested that the Daily Mail include the line "There is no suggestion that the duke had any sexual contact at the house, or knew what was allegedly going on there" you will find out how the at the time 17 y.o. Virginia Roberts feels about her public destruction now (A child the Mail described as an erotic masseuse - presumably to reduce the horror a normal human reacts to that pic whilst ensuring the victim is so humiliated she causes no further problem for "the royal family's" number one arms salesman). This victim first hung out with the andrew sleaze when she was 17 at the pimp's Florida hell hole where the age of consent is 18.

Concentrating on the effect on victims while protecting them from further harm will bring the creeps undone - nothing else will. It was only once people began to see past the priests claims that "the victims led me on" and considered the huge power imbalance that the catholic church came unstuck.
Most of all without humanity, there is no difference between any of us and the scum we criticise.

William Gruff , Jul 11 2019 0:55 utc | 106

Woohoo! Debsisdead isn't dead!

Now, to be on topic, why the insistence that Epstein finally getting outed for real is some mysterious intel op? The CIA has been screwing up left, right and center for years, so is it any surprise that one of their major kompromat operations is getting exposed? Their foolproof plan to install their tool Clinton in the White House in 2016 failed spectacularly and blew up in their faces, so tell me again how great they are at running covert ops? The CIA's own version of James Bond gets snuffed by the CIA's own death squads in Benghazi, but people still think the CIA has a clue what they're doing? The CIA's operatives in multiple embassies are being incapacitated by freakin' crickets and people think these clowns still somehow maintain some vestigial link to reality?

No, this is simply another massive screw-up by the establishment. This blind-sided the Deep State and so much took them by surprise that they were too late to get it clamped down in the mass media. If Epstein dies before the real dirt starts getting exposed then it proves me right and proves wrong all those who worship at the alter of the omnipotent Deep State.

[Jul 10, 2019] The True Cost Of Israel

Jul 10, 2019 | www.zerohedge.com

HyperboreanWind , 7 minutes ago

Former US Congressman James Traficant: US Gives Israel $15 BILLION A Year (2009)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y_Zhe2UUfcw

The True Cost Of Israel (2017)

https://www.theamericanconservative.com/articles/the-true-cost-of-israel/

natxlaw , 1 minute ago

He was great. Was he another Democrat who ran afoul of AIPAC like Cynthia McKinney?

[Jul 09, 2019] Looks like some people in the US government places Israeli interests above the interests of its own citizens. The benefits do not flow in both directions, though

I think as long as Neoconservatism is the official The USA foreign policy, the policy toward Israel and its current status will not change. In a way Israel is a one large (and very costly) military base of the USA in the Middle East and its important has grown due to the peak oil immensely.
At the same time it is important to understand that Israel completely depends on the USA for its security and as such is a vassal state. Not the other way around.
Notable quotes:
"... see the book Blood In The Water by Joan Mellen about the joint Israeli ... attack on the USS Liberty. ..."
"... the most heinous acts simply because they are connected in a web of corruption and venality. Maybe this is the moment of Peak Swamp? ..."
"... Have long time interest on how Israeli intelligence service became linked with the CIA. Of course, an easy determination was how CIA Jesus James Angleton became a central facilitator of the anti-American intelligence marriage with Israel.* ..."
"... For your consideration, I link below a video that features Andrew & Leslie Cockburn discussing their book, "Dangerous Liasons," which delved into Mossad & CIA love. ..."
"... Angleton is noted to have searched for Mary Pinchot Myers private diary after she was murdered on scene of a Georgetown canal's walking path. Killer never found. ..."
"... Fyi, Mary was JFK's lover & she suspected CIA involvement with his murder. Her ex-husband was Cord Myer Jr ..."
"... Partisan causes inevitably come under critical examination. And of course, for Israel, to be examined critically by America at large would be the end. So I'm optimistic. How much longer was the Soviet Union figured to last in 1985? ..."
Jul 09, 2019 | www.unz.com

Jon Baptist , says: July 9, 2019 at 1:17 pm GMT

Here is proof that Giraldi is correct regarding treasonous crimes having no consequences. A commentator from Mondoweiss called in to ask a question on C-Span regarding Israel's nukes. ( Israeli government minister takes credit for 27 U.S. states passing anti-BDS laws – https://mondoweiss.net/2019/07/israeli-government-minister/ )

Go to the 9:10 mark of the video.

It cannot be more obvious that the media and U.S. politicians are agents for Israel.

https://www.c-span.org/video/?462042-5/washington-journal-rep-abigail-spanberger-d-va-us-iran-tensions

DESERT FOX , says: July 9, 2019 at 2:11 pm GMT

Agree, see the book Blood In The Water by Joan Mellen about the joint Israeli ... attack on the USS Liberty.

Rurik , says: July 9, 2019 at 2:20 pm GMT
@Hibernian

the most heinous acts simply because they are connected in a web of corruption and venality. Maybe this is the moment of Peak Swamp?

https://www.zerohedge.com/news/2019-07-08/luongo-epsteins-arrest-tells-me-trump-now-out-blood

Well, if nothing else, at least this article proves I'm not the only one who clings desperately and pathetically to ephemeral, vanishing hope..

One thing that is palpable, (if not palatable) is that this arrest has the swamp in a huff. Lot , says: July 9, 2019 at 2:51 pm GMT

@Hibernian

He's not getting bail, and federal prison doesn't have parole. You serve 80% minimum of any sentence, and he's getting a long one.

War for Blair Mountain , says: July 9, 2019 at 3:36 pm GMT

Phil

What you claim about JFK and Dimona may very well be true it seems like it probably is true from what I have read about Yuval Neeman ..However, it wouldn't follow that JFK was assassinated by the Israelies or anyone but Oswald. If the Conspiracy Theorists get the physics of the JFK assassination wrong .there goes the GRAND CONSPIRACY .

Larger point: JFK CAME WITHIN 60 SECONDS OF NUKING US ALL ..We were saved from a thermonuclear death by a lone Russian Commie Submarine Commander ..I really do find the JFK worship disgusting

Philip Giraldi , says: July 9, 2019 at 3:50 pm GMT
@War for Blair Mountain

War-JFK's attempt to shut down the Israeli nuclear program is well documented, but I have never claimed that they killed the president. It is just one possibility as the investigation into the killing was bungled deliberately as to lay it all on a dead Oswald.

Lot , says: July 9, 2019 at 3:51 pm GMT
@Rurik

"not if he flips!"

Good point.

ChuckOrloski , says: July 9, 2019 at 3:59 pm GMT
@Jacques Sheete

Hey Jacques & especially SolontoCroesus!

Have long time interest on how Israeli intelligence service became linked with the CIA. Of course, an easy determination was how CIA Jesus James Angleton became a central facilitator of the anti-American intelligence marriage with Israel.*

For your consideration, I link below a video that features Andrew & Leslie Cockburn discussing their book, "Dangerous Liasons," which delved into Mossad & CIA love. Thank you, my Brothers!

https://www.youtube.com/embed/FqzvXCzXZg8?feature=oembed

* Angleton is noted to have searched for Mary Pinchot Myers private diary after she was murdered on scene of a Georgetown canal's walking path. Killer never found.

Fyi, Mary was JFK's lover & she suspected CIA involvement with his murder. Her ex-husband was Cord Myer Jr

Lot , says: July 9, 2019 at 4:11 pm GMT
@Wizard of Oz

It is the federal prosecutor in Manhattan who arrested and charged him. He could also face state charges.

jconsley , says: July 9, 2019 at 4:13 pm GMT

As soon as Kennedy was assassinated in 1963, the NUMEC operations were approved by the Johnson Administration. In late 1970s, Congress [Committee on Interstate and Foreign Commerce] held hearings on the unaccounted uranium supposedly lost during the enrichment process. A U.S. Government report had been issued concerning the loss. Nevertheless, there were no further investigations concerning the missing uranium in the NUMEC plant operated by Zionist Shapiro. President Kennedy was vehemently against Israel developing nuclear weapons and expressed his dissatisfaction with Israel's efforts to develop a nuclear bomb to Golda Meier. Moreover, The United States supported the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty which Israel has refused to sign as of today! Congress did nothing to discourage Israel. Indeed, Congress rewarded Israel by increasing the amount of U.S. tax dollars given to aid Israel!

geokat62 , says: July 9, 2019 at 4:14 pm GMT
@DESERT FOX

Read the book by Joan Mellen and JFK, by L. Fletcher Prouty

Or the book, Final Judgement , by Michael Collins Piper.

Rurik , says: July 9, 2019 at 4:14 pm GMT
@geokat62

They should be made to feel the people's wrath

Nothing Geo, nothing I can think of would terrify these people more than the prospect of returning to private life.

Robert Whatever , says: July 9, 2019 at 4:35 pm GMT

It is disheartening that the US government has become a totally owned subsidiary of Israel. The US government places Israeli interests far above the interests of its own citizens. The benefits do not flow in both directions, though.

Colin Wright , says: Website July 9, 2019 at 5:08 pm GMT

'How have you ass clowns changed anything about Israel???'

Progress is being made. If you go back forty years, Israel's legitimacy was all but universally taken for granted; it wasn't even controversial.

Then up until Trump's election, support for Israel in American politics was a non-partisan good; it was like being anti-Communist in 1955. Everyone loved Israel; see the seventeen standing ovations.

Now, not one of the Democratic candidates agreed to address this year's AIPAC convention. Kamala Harris has made sure she's the best choice for the Zionists, but even she didn't appear. Israel has become a partisan cause -- it belongs to Trump and the Evangelical Right now.

And that's good. Partisan causes inevitably come under critical examination. And of course, for Israel, to be examined critically by America at large would be the end. So I'm optimistic. How much longer was the Soviet Union figured to last in 1985?

[Jul 09, 2019] Spying for Israel is Consequence Free by Philip Giraldi

Highly recommended!
Notable quotes:
"... With the uranium in hand, the stealing of the advanced technology needed to make a nuclear weapon is where Milchan comes into the story . Arnon Milchan was born in Israel but moved to the United States as a young man and eventually wound up as the founder-owner of a major movie production company, New Regency Films. In a November 25, 2013 interview on Israeli television Milchan admitted that he had spent his many years in Hollywood as an agent for Israeli intelligence, helping obtain embargoed technologies and materials that enabled Israel to develop a nuclear weapon. ..."
"... Milchan, who clearly still has significant business interests in this country as evidenced by Bohemian Rhapsody , explained in his interview that "I did it for my country and I'm proud of it." He also said that "other big Hollywood names were connected to [his] covert affairs." It is, to be sure, astonishing that Milchan should admit to his crimes at a time when he was still traveling regularly to the U.S. and residing in California, but his belief in his own invulnerability stems from the fact that the federal government failed to act against him during the fifty years when he was mostly resident in the United States even though it knew about his spying activity. ..."
"... Among other successes, Milchan obtained through his company Heli Trading 800 krytons, the sophisticated triggers for nuclear weapons. The devices were acquired from the California top secret defense contractor MILCO International. Milchan personally recruited MILCO's president Richard Kelly Smyth as an agent before turning him over to another Heli Trading employee Benjamin Netanyahu for handling. Smyth was eventually arrested in 1985 and cooperated in his interrogation by the FBI before being sentenced to prison, which means that the Federal government knew all about both Milchan and Netanyahu at that time but did not even seek to interview them and ultimately did nothing. ..."
"... So Milchan was an Israeli spy who got away with it and is still making money off of the country that he victimized. ..."
"... Peres claims that he personally recruited Milchan as a spy and, from the age of 21, Milchan used a family chemical business as cover to engage in arms and technology sales. He was from the beginning involved in clandestine purchases in support of Israel's nuclear program. ..."
Jul 09, 2019 | www.unz.com

Back in the spring I wrote about coming across the name Arnon Milchan by chance on a movie credit while flying from Venice to Washington. Milchan, some might recall, is a Hollywood billionaire movie producer born in Israel, well known for such films as Pretty Woman and Bohemian Rhapsody . He is less well known for his role in arranging for the procurement and illegal transfer of U.S. technology that enabled the Jewish state to develop its own nuclear arsenal. Far from being ashamed of his betrayal of the adopted country that helped make him rich and famous, in 2011 he authorized and contributed to a ghost-written biography, which he boastfully entitled "Confidential: The Life of Secret Agent Turned Hollywood Tycoon." Parts of the book were in the first person with Milchan telling his story in his own words.

I had been aware of Milchan's crimes for a number of years, just as I had also speculated on how a leading Israeli spy working actively and successfully against vital U.S. anti-nuclear proliferation interests had managed to continue to maintain a home and business in Los Angeles while also appearing regularly at the Oscar presentation ceremonies. I asked "Why is this scumbag still making movies in Hollywood? Why isn't he in jail?" before concluding that the federal government clearly regards spying for Israel as a victimless crime, rarely arresting anyone and almost never prosecuting any of the numerous easily identifiable Israeli intelligence agents roaming the country.

Milchan was an active Israeli spy in the U.S., working for the Mossad technology theft division referred to as LEKEM. The Mossad frequently uses so-called sayanim in its espionage, which means diaspora Jews that it recruits on the basis of a shared religion or concern for the security of Israel. The threat coming from Israeli Embassy operatives inside the United States is such that the Department of Defense once warned that Jewish Americans in government would likely be the targets of their intelligence approaches.

President John F. Kennedy had tried to stop the Israeli nuclear weapons program but was assassinated before he could end it. By 1965, the Jewish state had nevertheless obtained the raw material for a bomb consisting of U.S. government owned highly enriched weapons grade uranium obtained from a company in Pennsylvania called NUMEC, which was founded in 1956 and owned by Zalman Mordecai Shapiro, head of the Pittsburgh chapter of the Zionist Organization of America. NUMEC was a supplier of enriched uranium for government projects but it was also from the start a front for the Israeli nuclear program, with its chief funder David Lowenthal, a leading Zionist, traveling to Israel at least once a month where he would meet with an old friend Meir Amit, who headed Israeli intelligence.

With the uranium in hand, the stealing of the advanced technology needed to make a nuclear weapon is where Milchan comes into the story . Arnon Milchan was born in Israel but moved to the United States as a young man and eventually wound up as the founder-owner of a major movie production company, New Regency Films. In a November 25, 2013 interview on Israeli television Milchan admitted that he had spent his many years in Hollywood as an agent for Israeli intelligence, helping obtain embargoed technologies and materials that enabled Israel to develop a nuclear weapon.

Milchan, who clearly still has significant business interests in this country as evidenced by Bohemian Rhapsody , explained in his interview that "I did it for my country and I'm proud of it." He also said that "other big Hollywood names were connected to [his] covert affairs." It is, to be sure, astonishing that Milchan should admit to his crimes at a time when he was still traveling regularly to the U.S. and residing in California, but his belief in his own invulnerability stems from the fact that the federal government failed to act against him during the fifty years when he was mostly resident in the United States even though it knew about his spying activity.

Among other successes, Milchan obtained through his company Heli Trading 800 krytons, the sophisticated triggers for nuclear weapons. The devices were acquired from the California top secret defense contractor MILCO International. Milchan personally recruited MILCO's president Richard Kelly Smyth as an agent before turning him over to another Heli Trading employee Benjamin Netanyahu for handling. Smyth was eventually arrested in 1985 and cooperated in his interrogation by the FBI before being sentenced to prison, which means that the Federal government knew all about both Milchan and Netanyahu at that time but did not even seek to interview them and ultimately did nothing.

So Milchan was an Israeli spy who got away with it and is still making money off of the country that he victimized. End of story, or is it? The Israeli liberal leaning newspaper Haaretz has recently featured an expose of his involvement in high level political corruption as well as in nuclear proliferation involving South Africa when that country was under sanctions. Haaretz observes how " the [Israel]-born [Hollywood] mogul made his real money elsewhere: in deals for arms including planes, missiles and gear for making nuclear bombs in which Israel, and later other countries, were parties. To make films there's no need for crony capitalism, but to succeed in the arms business, government connections are obligatory."

Milchan has been involved in a bit of controversy in Israel itself, where the police have recommended that he be charged with bribery connected with the ongoing investigation of corruption by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. Milchan, it seems, spent one million shekels ($250,000) on luxury items that he gave to Bibi as a reported quid pro quo to exempt his substantial U.S. derived income from taxes when he returned to Israel to live in 2013-4.

Demonstrating that Milchan's corruption was international, the police investigation determined that in 2014 Netanyahu approached then U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry to intervene and arrange for a long-term American visa for Milchan, who was at the time dealing with problems relating to his U.S. residency status. Milchan reportedly made the arrangement by going directly to Netanyahu's home with the customary boxes of expensive cigars and cases of champagne and waited for the prime minister to come home. When Netanyahu arrived, Milchan demanded that Bibi immediately contact Kerry to arrange a new visa. And Netanyahu did just that, picking up the phone and dialing. In the event, the visa was granted and Milchan continued to make more movies, and money, in Los Angeles.

... ... ...

Peres claims that he personally recruited Milchan as a spy and, from the age of 21, Milchan used a family chemical business as cover to engage in arms and technology sales. He was from the beginning involved in clandestine purchases in support of Israel's nuclear program.

Milchan also became a buyer for weapons in cases where the Israeli government did not want to have the purchases attributed to it. In all cases, Milchan took a commission on the sales, hence the claim that his Hollywood fortune constituted only a small part of his wealth. He sometimes found himself buying U.S. made weapons using Israeli government money that had come from U.S. taxpayer provided military assistance, taking his 10% along the way.

Starting in the 1970s, Israel, operating covertly through Milchan, sold South Africa embargoed weapons systems, receiving both money and uranium in return. South Africa knew how to return a favor, allowing Israel in September 1979 to conduct a nuclear test on an island administered by Pretoria in the Indian Ocean.

... ... ...

Philip M. Giraldi, Ph.D., is Executive Director of the Council for the National Interest, a 501(c)3 tax deductible educational foundation (Federal ID Number #52-1739023) that seeks a more interests-based U.S. foreign policy in the Middle East. Website is councilforthenationalinterest.org, address is P.O. Box 2157, Purcellville VA 20134 and its email is inform@cnionline.org


That Darn Jew , says: July 9, 2019 at 2:08 am GMT

It wasn’t just FBI that got called off. Customs also stumbled on this in-your-face proliferation ring. The judiciary was utterly gelded. Smyth, ‘Mossad’s’ asset, got bail of a measly $100K for frickin WMD proliferation. Who can exfiltrate a clandestine dealer in CCL items after the foreign end user refuses cooperation? So after Smyth skips his derisory $100K bail for 15 years of fun & sun in Spain, he finally gets parole and NO jail time cause the poor old guy was ever so ollld and frail! Who set all that up? Peres. And with whom does Perez arrange compacts that suspend the functions of multiple federal organizations and the courts?

That would be CIA.

https://www.israellobby.org/krytons/06272012_milco_mdr.pdf

Mossad is CIA’s wholesale source for cutouts because there’s nothing, absolutely nothing they won’t do to goy cattle. If you want to get beyond mealy-mouthed euphemisms like “Israel-first thinking within America’s establishment,” what you need is a Schlesinger to re-inventory the family jewels and find out who in CIA ran Milchan – because Milchan only did what CIA was scared to do itself. In this case, a country with no NPT commitments and a clandestine development program is a dandy way to develop and test the kind of munitions that got used at Baghdad Airport and the WTC. CIA has a long history of using Israeli assets for its dirtiest work: domestic surveillance, pedophile blackmail, illegal NBC weapons development and use, systematic and widespread universal-jurisdiction murder and disappearance.

Bill Barr’s dad hired Epstein to teach nubile ephebes at Dalton with no degree but oh yeah, Mossad ran him, right. Who at OFAC was the cognizant authority for the accounts at BOA Huntington Beach and Union Bank? That’s your CIA focal point.

sally , says: July 9, 2019 at 4:54 am GMT
@That Darn Jew CAV badge the weapon that has corrupted nearly every nation state in the western world? Politicians make promises, and then within hours for unexplained reasons, reverse them..Hmmm? Is the CAV Badge the weapon that has corrupted the intelligence services and stable of politicians in nearly every nation in the world? Did Colin Powell flash a CAV badge as he spoke to UN focus about the most likely presence of non existent WMDs that led to w__ in Iraq?

How can CAV badge victims be identified and isolated from politics?
Its more than spying its black male maybe?
The CAV badge could explain so many USA positive, American negative events?

Anon [287] • Disclaimer , says: July 9, 2019 at 6:12 am GMT

Know what? Lot of people are asking how Jeff Epstein got all of his lucre. His Bear Stearns past doesnt seem to completely “addy up”.

Wonder if he may have been supported financially by a foreign intel service to gather dirt on billionaire clients, Corporate officers, and politicians for leverage purposes later by said intel service?

Anyone think that could have been a role for this guy? Like I said……..he had more properties than he should have been able to afford. The seven story 71st street mansion, the 72 acre Island and mansions, the Palm beach mansions, the yachts, 727 airliner, helicopters , other properties and holdings. Where did all his pesos come from?

Sean , says: July 9, 2019 at 7:27 am GMT

By prokoking the the Soviets through his reviving Eisenhower’s proposal to give West Germany nuclear weapons, JFK ‘s reckless desire to nuke up any anti Soviet country took the world to the brink of nuclear war.

Behind all the “shocked, shocked I tell you!” diplomatic maneuvering, Cold war America wanted to stop Israel from getting a nuclear weapons as much as it wanted to stop South Africa from getting them: not at all.

Eisenhower gave Israel a nuclear reactor for goodness sake.

Kratoklastes , says: July 9, 2019 at 8:48 am GMT
@That Darn Jew that you had been tried for the Inner Ring and rejected. And then, if you are drawn in, next week it will be something a little further from the rules, and next year something further still, but all in the jolliest, friendliest spirit. It may end in a crash, a scandal, and penal servitude; it may end in millions, a peerage and giving the prizes at your old school. But you will be a scoundrel .

The more important points: the sine qua non : you must have wanted to be in the inner ring, and you must have been identified as corruptible by the people who decide who to suborn.

SolontoCroesus , says: July 9, 2019 at 10:13 am GMT
@niteranger ordinating information collected abroad for the president. After the United States became involved in World War II, the COI became the Office of Strategic Services (OSS) in June 1942, with Donovan still in charge.”

OSS was disbanded at war’s end, but, consistent with Donovan’s urgings, in 1946 Harry Truman created its successor organization, the CIA. Allen W. Dulles was the first civilian and longest serving head of CIA. Thus, men who had the greatest influence on the creation and evolution of the American Central Intelligence Agency were, first, deeply influenced by Jewish interests and ideologues.

[Jul 06, 2019] Same old, same old, same old, same old. Prospective candidates spewing out the same tired old hot air about how, this time, it really, really, really, really will be different.

Notable quotes:
"... Just like Dubya. Just like Obomber. Just like the Orange Baboon. Whilst simultaneously begging for shekels from Adelson, Saban, Singer, Marcus. ..."
Jul 06, 2019 | consortiumnews.com

mark , July 3, 2019 at 00:17

Same old, same old, same old, same old. Prospective candidates spewing out the same tired old hot air about how, this time, it really, really, really, really will be different.

There won't be any more crazy multitrillion wars for Israel. Honest.

Just like Dubya. Just like Obomber. Just like the Orange Baboon. Whilst simultaneously begging for shekels from Adelson, Saban, Singer, Marcus.

... ... ...

[Jul 05, 2019] Ivanka and Jared are going to be a liability for the reelection of Trump

Notable quotes:
"... But to me, she looks like – among other things – a clever manipulator in her, relatively short radius. Yet, although the US is no.1. as world power, she is no match for any real world politician, anywhere. Not just now; anytime in the future. ..."
"... Her "visibility" is a confluence of a few fleeting influences. Basically, fate has favored her for the time being (I'm not talking about morals etc.). But, to think that she's capable of much more is to entertain the idea that Trump is, all the time, playing 6-dimensional chess. ..."
"... Ivanka took her conversion to Judaism to an almost insane level. This comes from the Rabbi's involved in her conversion. She is an even more hard core Zionist than "daddy dearest", if that is even humanly possible ..."
"... Two days ago I commented on Breitbart that good or bad G20, Trump looked foolish toting Ivanka along. Response: Oh yeah, he should have brought AOC, that would have been much better, you idiot. Me: So Trump's only choice was Ivanka or AOC? None of the hundreds of attorneys or diplomats who have devoted careers to international trade negotiations? ..."
Jul 05, 2019 | www.unz.com

The Alarmist, July 5, 2019 at 7:56 am GMT 100 Words

Meow!

Because however loud the calls for Ivanka's ouster have gotten . Ivanka just digs those stilettoes in. She won't be budged. She refuses to take a hint.

Amazing how deaf fathers can be when it comes to their daughters. Surprising he didn't dispose of Jared by making him Secy of Education or some shizzle like that.

Anon [424] Disclaimer , says: Next New Comment July 5, 2019 at 9:03 am GMT

Ivankita and Jaredcito are going to be a liability for the reelection of daddy . Does`t Ivankita realizes it ?

Felix Krull , says: Next New Comment July 5, 2019 at 9:27 am GMT

Here's a solid surmise: Trump dare not cross his daughter who is intent on riding his coattails to things far greater.

That is the most naive surmise I've ever heard. Do you also believe that Trump bombed Syria because Ivanka got mopey over some snuff photos?

Bardon Kaldian , says: Next New Comment July 5, 2019 at 10:15 am GMT

Ilana seems to think, referencing Wolff (and arguing with his position), that IKT is a sort of Machiavellian (although inexperienced) woman greedy for power who, well, should not be underestimated.

Of course no one should be underestimated.

But to me, she looks like – among other things – a clever manipulator in her, relatively short radius. Yet, although the US is no.1. as world power, she is no match for any real world politician, anywhere. Not just now; anytime in the future.

She seems to be one of those people who are lucky for a period of time, but soon disappear from the scene. Her "visibility" is a confluence of a few fleeting influences. Basically, fate has favored her for the time being (I'm not talking about morals etc.). But, to think that she's capable of much more is to entertain the idea that Trump is, all the time, playing 6-dimensional chess.

Of course- not. Life is not like that.

Johnny Walker Read , says: Next New Comment July 5, 2019 at 12:35 pm GMT

Trump's(Ivanka)Hebrew name is "Yael." In the Book of Judges, a woman named Yael came upon the enemy king Sisera, who had fled from battle with the Isralites. She fed and sheltered him until he fell asleep. Then she killed him by using a mallet to drive a tent peg into his skull.

Ivanka took her conversion to Judaism to an almost insane level. This comes from the Rabbi's involved in her conversion. She is an even more hard core Zionist than "daddy dearest", if that is even humanly possible. Ivanka believes she is now a chosenite of the highest order and is therefore destined to rule over all us insignificant little Goys. Yael's greatest concern is rising antisemitism here in the US of Israel.

https://www.timesofisrael.com/ivanka-trump-concerned-about-rising-anti-semitism-drop-in-israel-support/

Nancy Pelosi's Latina Maid , says: Next New Comment July 5, 2019 at 12:46 pm GMT

Many of our MAGApedes still think Ivanka's great because Trump is God Emperor.

Two days ago I commented on Breitbart that good or bad G20, Trump looked foolish toting Ivanka along. Response: Oh yeah, he should have brought AOC, that would have been much better, you idiot. Me: So Trump's only choice was Ivanka or AOC? None of the hundreds of attorneys or diplomats who have devoted careers to international trade negotiations?

Response: I would take Ivanka over any single "professional" negotiator of the past 30 years – hands down.

I think the sage commenters at Unz underestimate just how entrenched God Emperor's fanatic support remains. And apparently this support extends to Jarvanka.

Johnny Walker Read , says: Next New Comment July 5, 2019 at 12:55 pm GMT

Let us not forget the words of General George Cornwallis in 1781.

"Your churches will be used to teach the Jew's religion and in less than two hundred years, the whole nation will be working for divine world government. That government that they believe to be divine will be the British Empire. All religions will be permeated with Judaism without even being noticed by the masses, and they will all be under the invisible all-seeing eye of the Grand Architect of Freemasonry."

Did this man nail it or what?

https://www.henrymakow.com/the_united_states_is_a_masonic.html

Jacques Sheete , says: Next New Comment July 5, 2019 at 1:53 pm GMT
@Johnny Walker Read lives." (p. 287)

In the words of a speaker at a secret B'nai Brith meeting in Paris in 1936:

"Yet it remains our secret that those Gentiles who betray their own and most precious interests, by joining us in our plot should never know that these associations are of our creation and that they serve our purpose

"One of the many triumphs of our Freemasonry is that those Gentiles who become members of our Lodges, should never suspect that we are using them to build their own jails, upon whose terraces we shall erect the throne of our Universal King of Israel; and should never know that we are commanding them to forge the chains of their own servility to our future King of the World."

Republic , says: Next New Comment July 5, 2019 at 2:33 pm GMT
@Johnny Walker Read poke to Washington in 1781

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jonathan_Williams_(engineer)

He spent most of the period from 1770 to 1785 in England

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Charles_Cornwallis,_1st_Marquess_Cornwallis

Cornwallis never met Washington

Cornwallis, apparently not wanting to face Washington, claimed to be ill on the day of the surrender, and sent Brigadier General Charles O'Hara in his place to surrender his sword formally. Washington had his second-in-command, Benjamin Lincoln, accept Cornwallis' sword

[Jun 29, 2019] You can see Chabad as a CIA tool to get their foot into Eastern Europe/Russia in the 1990's

Jun 29, 2019 | www.moonofalabama.org

somebody , Jun 29, 2019 7:23:01 AM | 122

...Chabad is interesting. They are a network of independent open chassidist communities, charities and schools with strong bases in Brooklyn, Chabad Israel and Moscow, and lots of political and secret service connections. The do not finance themselves via membership fees but via donations. The founding Rabbi has died, so there is no one in control of this network except the - diverse - people who donate. There is no legal restriction on who may or may not call themselves Chabad and there is no controlling within the network. They seem to have a policy of restricting political interventions on "Jewish issues" and not to interfere in the politics of the host countries otherwise. So they don't mind being seen with Viktor Orban .
Abramovich - see non existant Russian oligarchs - funded a lot on the Russian side. On the US side they encourage real estate donations" and are connected to Jared Kushner.
In Israel they are close to the government and Netanyahu.

A network like this can be influenced/used by all sides that donate to it. So you can see Chabad as a CIA tool to get their foot into Eastern Europe/Russia in the 1990's, as a Russian influence campaign or an Israeli tool.

Should Russia stop its military backing of Iran, and should the US attack Iran against their interests, I am prepared to believe Israel succeeded. I very much doubt this will be the case.

[Jun 28, 2019] The Donald's Latest Iranian Caper Sh*t-Faced Stupidity by David Stockman

Highly recommended!
Notable quotes:
"... This is just wanton shit-faced stupidity. We are referring to the Trump Administration's escalation of sanctions on Iran's Ayatollah Khamenei and its foreign minister, and then the Donald's tweet-storm of bluster, threats and implicit redlines when they didn't take too kindly to this latest act of aggression by Washington. ..."
"... That last point can't be emphasized enough. Iran is zero threat to the American homeland and has never engaged in any hostile action on U.S soil or even threatened the same. ..."
"... To the contrary, Washington's massive naval and military arsenal in the middle east is essentially the occupational force of a naked aggressor that has created mayhem through the Persian Gulf and middle eastern region for the past three decades; and has done so in pursuit of the will-o-wisp of oil security and the neocon agenda of demonizing and isolating the Iranian regime. ..."
"... the demonization of the Iranian regime is based on lies and propaganda ginned up by the Bibi Netanyahu branch of the War Party (that has falsely made Iran an "existential" threat in order to win elections in Israel). ..."
"... Likewise, it has presumed to have an independent foreign policy involving Washington proscribed alliances with the sovereign state of Syria, the leading political party of Lebanon (Hezbollah), the ruling authorities in Baghdad and the reining power in the Yemen capital of Sana'a (the Houthis). All these regimes except the puppet state of Iraq are deemed by Washington to be sources of unsanctioned "regional instability" and Iran's alliances with them have been capriciously labeled as acts of state sponsored terrorism. ..."
"... The same goes for Washington's demarche against Iran's modest array of short, medium and intermediate range ballistic missiles. These weapons are palpably instruments of self-defense, but Imperial Washington insists their purpose is aggression – unlike the case of practically every other nation which offers its custom to American arms merchants for like and similar weapons. ..."
"... For example, Iran's arch-rival across the Persian Gulf, Saudi Arabia, has more advanced NATO supplied ballistic missiles with even greater range (2,600 km range). So does Israel, Pakistan, India and a half-dozen other nations, which are either Washington allies or have been given a hall-pass in order to bolster US arms exports. ..."
"... In short, Washington's escalating war on Iran is an exercise in global hegemony, not territorial self-defense ..."
"... When the cold-war officially ended in 1991, in fact, the Cheney/neocon cabal feared the kind of drastic demobilization of the US military-industrial complex that was warranted by the suddenly more pacific strategic environment. In response, they developed an anti-Iranian doctrine that was explicitly described as a way of keeping defense spending at high cold war levels. ..."
"... Iranians had a case is beyond doubt. The open US archives now prove that the CIA overthrew Iran's democratically elected government in 1953 and put the utterly unsuited and megalomaniacal Mohammad Reza Shah on the peacock throne to rule as a puppet in behalf of US security and oil interests. ..."
"... Indeed, in this very context the new Iranian regime proved quite dramatically that it was not hell bent on obtaining nuclear bombs or any other weapons of mass destruction. In the midst of Iraq's unprovoked invasion of Iran in the early 1980s the Ayatollah Khomeini issued a fatwa against biological and chemical weapons. ..."
"... Yet at that very time, Saddam was dropping these horrific weapons on Iranian battle forces – some of them barely armed teenage boys – with the spotting help of CIA tracking satellites and the concurrence of Washington. So from the very beginning, the Iranian posture was wholly contrary to the War Party's endless blizzard of false charges about its quest for nukes. ..."
"... However benighted and medieval its religious views, the theocracy which rules Iran does not consist of demented war mongers. In the heat of battle they were willing to sacrifice their own forces rather than violate their religious scruples to counter Saddam's WMDs. ..."
"... Then in 1983 the new Iranian regime decided to complete the Bushehr power plant and some additional elements of the Shah's grand plan. But when they attempted to reactivate the French enrichment services contract and buy necessary power plant equipment from the original German suppliers they were stopped cold by Washington. And when the tried to get their $2 billion deposit back, they were curtly denied that, too. ..."
Jun 25, 2019 | original.antiwar.com
This is just wanton shit-faced stupidity. We are referring to the Trump Administration's escalation of sanctions on Iran's Ayatollah Khamenei and its foreign minister, and then the Donald's tweet-storm of bluster, threats and implicit redlines when they didn't take too kindly to this latest act of aggression by Washington.

That last point can't be emphasized enough. Iran is zero threat to the American homeland and has never engaged in any hostile action on U.S soil or even threatened the same.

To the contrary, Washington's massive naval and military arsenal in the middle east is essentially the occupational force of a naked aggressor that has created mayhem through the Persian Gulf and middle eastern region for the past three decades; and has done so in pursuit of the will-o-wisp of oil security and the neocon agenda of demonizing and isolating the Iranian regime.

But as we have demonstrated previously, the best cure for high oil prices is the global market, not the Fifth Fleet. And the demonization of the Iranian regime is based on lies and propaganda ginned up by the Bibi Netanyahu branch of the War Party (that has falsely made Iran an "existential" threat in order to win elections in Israel).

Stated differently, the American people have no dog in the political hunts of Washington's so-called allies in the region; and will be no worse for the wear economically if Washington were to dispense with its idiotic economic warfare against Iran's 4 million barrel per day oil industry and allow all exporters in the region to produce and sell every single barrel they can economically extract.

Viewed in the proper context, Iran's response to the new sanctions and intensified efforts to destroy their economy was readily warranted:

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani called the new sanctions "outrageous and stupid." Mr. Khamenei, while the political leader of Iran, also is one of the world's leading authorities for Shia Muslims.

"Would any administration with a bit of wisdom [sanction] the highest authority of a country? And not only a political authority, a religious, social, spiritual one, and not the leader of Iran only, the leader of the Islamic revolution all over the world?" Mr. Rouhani said in a speech broadcast on state television.

He said it was "obvious" that the US was lying about wanting to negotiate with Iran: "You want us to negotiate with you again?" Mr. Rouhani said, "and at the same time you seek to sanction the foreign minister too?"

Iran also said these sanctions closed the door on diplomacy and threatened global stability, as American officials renewed efforts to build a global alliance against Tehran.

Unfortunately, it didn't take the Donald long to upchuck what amounted to a dangerous tantrum:

.Iran's very ignorant and insulting statement, put out today, only shows that they do not understand reality. Any attack by Iran on anything American will be met with great and overwhelming force. In some areas, overwhelming will mean obliteration. No more John Kerry & Obama!

Those words are utterly reckless and outrageous. The Donald is carrying water for the neocons, Bibi and the Saudis without really understanding what he is doing and in the process is betraying America First and inching closer to an utterly unnecessary conflagration in the Persian Gulf that will virtually upend the global economy.

Worst of all, as he escalates the confrontation with the Iranian regime, he espouses a pack of lies and distortions that do no remotely comport with the facts. For instance, the following tweet is absolutely neocon baloney:

.The wonderful Iranian people are suffering, and for no reason at all. Their leadership spends all of its money on Terror, and little on anything else. The US has not forgotten Iran's use of IED's & EFP's (bombs), which killed 2000 Americans, and wounded many more

The truth of the matter is that the Donald is referring to attacks on US forces by the Shiite militias in Iraq during Washington's misbegotten invasion and occupation of that woebegone nation during the last decades. The Shiite live there, constitute the majority of its electorate, didn't want America there in the first place, and now actually run the government that Washington placed in power and are totally opposed to Trump's confrontation with their Shiite compatriots in Iran.

Talk about the pot calling the kettle black!

Better still, it is crucial to understand that this entire dangerous escalation is owing to the fact that the Donald got into his thick head that utter nonsense that the Iran nuke deal was some kind of disaster, and from there walked-away from the deal and restarted a brutal economic war against Iran in the guise of sanctions.

But nothing could be further from the truth. The Donald's action to terminate the Iranian nuclear deal was a complete triumph for the War Party.

It gutted the very idea of America First because Washington's renewed round of sanctions constitute economic aggression against a country that is no threat to the US homeland whatsoever.

In fact, Iran did not violate any term of the nuke deal, and as we demonstrate below, scrupulously adhered to the letter of it. So the real reasons for Trump's abandonment of the nuke deal have everything to do with the kind of Imperial interventionism that is the antithesis of America First.

Trump's action, in fact, is predicated on the decades long neocon-inspired Big Lie that Iran is an aggressive expansionist and terrorism-supporting rogue state which threatens the security of not just the region, but America too.

But that's flat out poppycock. As we documented last week, the claim that Iran is the expansionist leader of the Shiite Crescent is based on nothing more than the fact that Tehran has an independent foreign policy based on its own interests and confessional affiliations – legitimate relationships that are demonized by virtue of not being approved by Washington.

Likewise, the official charge that Iran is the leading state sponsor of terrorism is not remotely warranted by the facts: The listing is essentially a State Department favor to the Netanyahu branch of the War Party.

The fact is, the Iranian regime with its piddling $14 billion military budget has no means to attack America militarily and has never threatened to do so. Nor has it invaded any other country in the region where it was not invited by a sovereign government host.

As Ron Paul cogently observed:

Is Iran really the aggressive one? When you unilaterally pull out of an agreement that was reducing tensions and boosting trade; when you begin applying sanctions designed to completely destroy another country's economy; when you position military assets right offshore of that country; when you threaten to destroy that country on a regular basis, calling it a campaign of "maximum pressure," to me it seems a stretch to play the victim when that country retaliates by shooting a spy plane that is likely looking for the best way to attack.

Even if the US spy plane was not in Iranian airspace – but it increasingly looks like it was – it was just another part of an already-existing US war on Iran. Yes, sanctions are a form of war, not a substitute for war.

The point is Washington's case is almost entirely bogus. To wit:

Mr. Trump also reiterated his demands Monday at the White House: "We will continue to increase pressure on Tehran until the regime abandons its dangerous activities and its aspirations, including the pursuit of nuclear weapons, increased enrichment of uranium, development of ballistic missiles, engagement in and support for terrorism, fueling of foreign conflicts, and belligerent acts directed against the United States and its allies."

Let's see about those "dangerous activities and aspirations".

In fact, Iran has no blue water navy that could effectively operate outside of the Persian Gulf; its longest range warplanes can barely get to Rome without refueling; and its array of mainly defensive medium and intermediate range missiles cannot strike most of NATO, to say nothing of the North American continent.

Likewise, it has presumed to have an independent foreign policy involving Washington proscribed alliances with the sovereign state of Syria, the leading political party of Lebanon (Hezbollah), the ruling authorities in Baghdad and the reining power in the Yemen capital of Sana'a (the Houthis). All these regimes except the puppet state of Iraq are deemed by Washington to be sources of unsanctioned "regional instability" and Iran's alliances with them have been capriciously labeled as acts of state sponsored terrorism.

The same goes for Washington's demarche against Iran's modest array of short, medium and intermediate range ballistic missiles. These weapons are palpably instruments of self-defense, but Imperial Washington insists their purpose is aggression – unlike the case of practically every other nation which offers its custom to American arms merchants for like and similar weapons.

For example, Iran's arch-rival across the Persian Gulf, Saudi Arabia, has more advanced NATO supplied ballistic missiles with even greater range (2,600 km range). So does Israel, Pakistan, India and a half-dozen other nations, which are either Washington allies or have been given a hall-pass in order to bolster US arms exports.

In short, Washington's escalating war on Iran is an exercise in global hegemony, not territorial self-defense. It is a testament to the manner in which the historic notion of national defense has morphed into Washington's arrogant claim that it constitutes the "Indispensable Nation" which purportedly stands as mankind's bulwark against global disorder and chaos among nations.

Likewise, the Shiite theocracy ensconced in Tehran was an unfortunate albatross on the Persian people, but it was no threat to America's safety and security. The very idea that Tehran is an expansionist power bent on exporting terrorism to the rest of the world is a giant fiction and tissue of lies invented by the Washington War Party and its Bibi Netanyahu branch in order to win political support for their confrontationist policies.

Indeed, the three decade long demonization of Iran has served one overarching purpose. Namely, it enabled both branches of the War Party to conjure up a fearsome enemy, thereby justifying aggressive policies that call for a constant state of war and military mobilization.

When the cold-war officially ended in 1991, in fact, the Cheney/neocon cabal feared the kind of drastic demobilization of the US military-industrial complex that was warranted by the suddenly more pacific strategic environment. In response, they developed an anti-Iranian doctrine that was explicitly described as a way of keeping defense spending at high cold war levels.

And the narrative they developed to this end is one of the more egregious Big Lies ever to come out of the beltway. It puts you in mind of the young boy who killed his parents, and then threw himself on the mercy of the courts on the grounds that he was an orphan!

To wit, during the 1980s the neocons in the Reagan Administration issued their own fatwa again the Islamic Republic of Iran based on its rhetorical hostility to America. Yet that enmity was grounded in Washington's 25-year support for the tyrannical and illegitimate regime of the Shah, and constituted a founding narrative of the Islamic Republic that was not much different than America's revolutionary castigation of King George.

That the Iranians had a case is beyond doubt. The open US archives now prove that the CIA overthrew Iran's democratically elected government in 1953 and put the utterly unsuited and megalomaniacal Mohammad Reza Shah on the peacock throne to rule as a puppet in behalf of US security and oil interests.

During the subsequent decades the Shah not only massively and baldly plundered the wealth of the Persian nation. With the help of the CIA and US military, he also created a brutal secret police force known as the Savak, which made the East German Stasi look civilized by comparison.

All elements of Iranian society including universities, labor unions, businesses, civic organizations, peasant farmers and many more were subjected to intense surveillance by the Savak agents and paid informants. As one critic described it:

Over the years, Savak became a law unto itself, having legal authority to arrest, detain, brutally interrogate and torture suspected people indefinitely. Savak operated its own prisons in Tehran, such as Qezel-Qalaeh and Evin facilities and many suspected places throughout the country as well.

Ironically, among his many grandiose follies, the Shah embarked on a massive civilian nuclear power campaign in the 1970s, which envisioned literally paving the Iranian landscape with dozens of nuclear power plants.

He would use Iran's surging oil revenues after 1973 to buy all the equipment required from Western companies – and also fuel cycle support services such as uranium enrichment – in order to provide his kingdom with cheap power for centuries.

At the time of the Revolution, the first of these plants at Bushehr was nearly complete, but the whole grandiose project was put on hold amidst the turmoil of the new regime and the onset of Saddam Hussein's war against Iran in September 1980. As a consequence, a $2 billion deposit languished at the French nuclear agency that had originally obtained it from the Shah to fund a ramp-up of its enrichment capacity to supply his planned battery of reactors.

Indeed, in this very context the new Iranian regime proved quite dramatically that it was not hell bent on obtaining nuclear bombs or any other weapons of mass destruction. In the midst of Iraq's unprovoked invasion of Iran in the early 1980s the Ayatollah Khomeini issued a fatwa against biological and chemical weapons.

Yet at that very time, Saddam was dropping these horrific weapons on Iranian battle forces – some of them barely armed teenage boys – with the spotting help of CIA tracking satellites and the concurrence of Washington. So from the very beginning, the Iranian posture was wholly contrary to the War Party's endless blizzard of false charges about its quest for nukes.

However benighted and medieval its religious views, the theocracy which rules Iran does not consist of demented war mongers. In the heat of battle they were willing to sacrifice their own forces rather than violate their religious scruples to counter Saddam's WMDs.

Then in 1983 the new Iranian regime decided to complete the Bushehr power plant and some additional elements of the Shah's grand plan. But when they attempted to reactivate the French enrichment services contract and buy necessary power plant equipment from the original German suppliers they were stopped cold by Washington. And when the tried to get their $2 billion deposit back, they were curtly denied that, too.

To make a long story short, the entire subsequent history of off again/on again efforts by the Iranians to purchase dual use equipment and components on the international market, often from black market sources like Pakistan, was in response to Washington's relentless efforts to block its legitimate rights as a signatory to the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty (NPT) to complete some parts of the Shah's civilian nuclear project.

Needless to say, it did not take much effort by the neocon "regime change" fanatics which inhabited the national security machinery, especially after the 2000 election, to spin every attempt by Iran to purchase even a lowly pump or pipe fitting as evidence of a secret campaign to get the bomb.

The exaggerations, lies, distortions and fear-mongering which came out of this neocon campaign are downright despicable. Yet they incepted way back in the early 1990s when George H.W. Bush actually did reach out to the newly elected government of Hashemi Rafsanjani to bury the hatchet after it had cooperated in obtaining the release of American prisoners being held in Lebanon in 1989.

Rafsanjani was self-evidently a pragmatist who did not want conflict with the United States and the West; and after the devastation of the eight year war with Iraq was wholly focused on economic reconstruction and even free market reforms of Iran's faltering economy.

It is one of the great tragedies of history that the neocons managed to squelch even George Bush's better instincts with respect to rapprochement with Tehran.

The Neocon Big Lie About Iranian Nukes And Terrorism

So the prisoner release opening was short-lived – especially after the top post at the CIA was assumed in 1991 by Robert Gates. As one of the very worst of the unreconstructed cold war apparatchiks, it can be well and truly said that Gates looked peace in the eye and then elected to pervert John Quincy Adams' wise maxim by searching the globe for monsters to fabricate.

In this case the motivation was especially loathsome. Gates had been Bill Casey's right hand man during the latter's rogue tenure at the CIA in the Reagan administration. Among the many untoward projects that Gates shepherded was the Iran-Contra affair that nearly destroyed his career when it blew-up, and for which he blamed the Iranians for its public disclosure.

From his post as deputy national security director in 1989 and then as CIA head Gates pulled out all the stops to get even. Almost single-handedly he killed-off the White House goodwill from the prisoner release, and launched the blatant myth that Iran was both sponsoring terrorism and seeking to obtain nuclear weapons.

Indeed, it was Gates who was the architect of the demonization of Iran that became a staple of War Party propaganda after the 1991. In time that morphed into the utterly false claim that Iran is an aggressive wanna be hegemon that is a fount of terrorism and is dedicated to the destruction of the state of Israel, among other treacherous purposes.

That giant lie was almost single-handedly fashioned by the neocons and Bibi Netanyahu's coterie of power-hungry henchman after the mid-1990s. Indeed, the false claim that Iran posses an "existential threat" to Israel is a product of the pure red meat domestic Israeli politics that have kept Bibi in power for much of the last two decades.

But the truth is Iran has only a tiny fraction of Israel's conventional military capability. And compared to the latter's 100 odd nukes, Iran has never had a nuclear weaponization program after a small scale research program was ended in 2003.

That is not merely our opinion. It's been the sober assessment of the nation's top 17 intelligence agencies in the official National Intelligence Estimates ever since 2007. And now in conjunction with a further study undertaken pursuant to the 2015 nuke deal, the IAEA has also concluded the Iran had no secret program after 2003.

On the political and foreign policy front, Iran is no better or worse than any of the other major powers in the Middle East. In many ways it is far less of a threat to regional peace and stability than the military butchers who now run Egypt on $1.5 billion per year of US aid.

And it is surely no worse than the royal family tyrants who squander the massive oil resources of Saudi Arabia in pursuit of unspeakable opulence and decadence to the detriment of the 30 million citizens which are not part of the regime, and who one day may well reach the point of revolt.

When it comes to the support of terrorism, the Saudis have funded more jihadists and terrorists throughout the region than Iran ever even imagined.

In fact, Iran is a nearly bankrupt country that has no capability whatsoever to threaten the security and safety of the citizens of Spokane WA, Peoria IL or anywhere else in the USA.

Its $460 billion GDP is the size of Indiana's and its 68,000 man military is only slightly larger than the national guard of Texas.

It is a land of severe mountains and daunting swamps that are not all that conducive to rapid economic progress and advanced industrialization. It has no blue water navy, no missiles with more than a few hundred miles of range, and, we must repeat again, has had no nuclear weapons program for more than a decade.

Moreover, Donald's incessant charge that the Obama Administration gave away the store during the nuke deal negotiations that led to the JCPA is just blatant nonsense. In fact, the Iranians made huge concessions on nearly every issue that made a difference.

That included deep concessions on the number of permitted centrifuges at Natanz; the dismantlement of the Fordow and Arak nuclear operations; the virtually complete liquidation of its enriched uranium stockpiles; the intrusiveness and scope of the inspections regime; and the provisions with respect to Iran's so-called "breakout" capacity.

For instance, while every signatory of the non-proliferation treaty has the right to civilian enrichment, Iran agreed to reduce the number of centrifuges by 70% from 20,000 to 6,000.

And its effective spinning capacity was reduced by significantly more. That's because the permitted Natanz centrifuges now consist exclusively of its most rudimentary, outdated equipment – first-generation IR-1 knockoffs of 1970s European models.

Not only was Iran not be allowed to build or develop newer models, but even those remaining were permitted to enrich uranium to a limit of only 3.75% purity. That is to say, to the generation of fissile material that is not remotely capable of reaching bomb grade concentrations of 90%.

Equally importantly, pursuant to the agreement Iran has eliminated enrichment activity entirely at its Fordow plant – a facility that had been Iran's one truly advanced, hardened site that could withstand an onslaught of Israeli or US bunker busters.

Instead, Fordow has become a small time underground science lab devoted to medical isotope research and crawling with international inspectors. In effectively decommissioning Fordow and thereby eliminating any capacity to cheat from a secure facility – what Iran got in return was at best a fig leave of salve for its national pride.

The disposition of the reactor at Arak has been even more dispositive. For years, the War Party has falsely waved the bloody shirt of "plutonium" because the civilian nuclear reactor being built there was of Canadian "heavy water" design rather than GE or Westinghouse "light water" design; and, accordingly, when finished it would have generated plutonium as a waste product rather than conventional spent nuclear fuel rods.

In truth, the Iranians couldn't have bombed a beehive with the Arak plutonium because you need a reprocessing plant to convert it into bomb grade material. Needless to say, Iran never had such a plant – nor any plans to build one, and no prospect for getting the requisite technology and equipment.

But now even that bogeyman no longer exists. Iran removed and destroyed the reactor core of its existing Arak plant in 2016 and filled it with cement, as attested to by international inspectors under the JCPA.

As to its already existing enriched stock piles, including some 20% medical-grade material, 97% has been eliminated as per the agreement. That is, Iran now holds only 300 kilograms of its 10,000 kilogram stockpile in useable or recoverable form. Senator Kirk could store what is left in his wine cellar.

But where the framework agreement decisively shut down the War Party was with respect to its provision for a robust, comprehensive and even prophylactic inspections regime. All of the major provision itemized above are being enforced by continuous IAEA access to existing facilities including its main centrifuge complex at Natanz – along with Fordow, Arak and a half dozen other sites.

Indeed, the real breakthrough in the JCPA lies in Iran's agreement to what amounts to a cradle-to-grave inspection regime. It encompasses the entire nuclear fuel chain.

That means international inspectors can visit Iran's uranium mines and milling and fuel preparation operations. This encompasses even its enrichment equipment manufacturing and fabrication plants, including centrifuge rotor and bellows production and storage facilities.

Beyond that, Iran has also been subject to a robust program of IAEA inspections to prevent smuggling of materials into the country to illicit sites outside of the named facilities under the agreement. This encompasses imports of nuclear fuel cycle equipment and materials, including so-called "dual use" items which are essentially civilian imports that can be repurposed to nuclear uses, even peaceful domestic power generation.

In short, not even a Houdini could secretly breakout of the control box established by the JCPA and confront the world with some kind of fait accompli threat to use the bomb.

That's because what it would take to do so is absurdly implausible. That is, Iran would need to secretly divert thousands of tons of domestically produced or imported uranium and then illicitly mill and upgrade such material at secret fuel preparation plants.

It would also need to secretly construct new, hidden enrichment operations of such massive scale that they could house more than 10,000 new centrifuges. Moreover, they would need to build these massive spinning arrays from millions of component parts smuggled into the country and transported to remote enrichment operations – all undetected by the massive complex of spy satellites overhead and covert US ands Israeli intelligence agency operatives on the ground in Iran.

Finally, it would require the activation from scratch of a weaponization program which has been dormant according to the National Intelligence Estimates (NIEs) for more than a decade. And then, that the Iranian regime – after cobbling together one or two bombs without testing them or their launch vehicles – would nevertheless be willing to threaten to use them sight unseen.

So just stop it!

You need to be a raging, certifiable paranoid boob to believe that the Iranians can break out of this framework box based on a secret new capacity to enrich the requisite fissile material and make a bomb.

In the alternative scenario, you have to be a willful know-nothing to think that if it publicly repudiates the agreement, Iran could get a bomb overnight before the international community could take action.

To get enough nuclear material to make a bomb from the output of the 5,000 "old and slow" centrifuges remaining at Natanz would take years, not months. And if subject to an embargo on imported components, as it would be after a unilateral Iranian repudiation of the JCPA, it could not rebuild its now dismantled enrichment capacity rapidly, either.

At the end of the day, in fact, what you really have to believe is that Iran is run by absolutely irrational, suicidal madmen. After all, even if they managed to defy the immensely prohibitive constraints described above and get one or a even a few nuclear bombs, what in the world would they do with them?

Drop them on Tel Aviv? That would absolutely insure Israel's navy and air force would unleash its 100-plus nukes and thereby incinerate the entire industrial base and major population centers of Iran.

Indeed, the very idea that deterrence would fail even if a future Iranian regime were to defy all the odds, and also defy the fatwa against nuclear weapons issued by their Supreme Leader, amounts to one of the most preposterous Big Lies ever concocted.

There is no plausible or rational basis for believing it outside of the axis-of-evil narrative. So what's really behind Trump's withdrawal from the JCPA is nothing more than the immense tissue of lies and unwarranted demonization of Iran that the War Party has fabricated over the last three decades.

Iran Never Wanted the Bomb

At bottom, all the hysteria about the mullahs getting the bomb was based on the wholly theoretically supposition that they wanted civilian enrichment only as a stepping stone to the bomb. Yet the entirety of the US intelligence complex as well as the attestation of George W. Bush himself say it isn't so.

As we have previously indicated, the blinding truth of that proposition first came in the National Intelligence Estimates of 2007. These NIEs represent a consensus of all 17 US intelligence agencies on salient issues each year, and on the matter of Iran's nuclear weapons program they could not have been more unequivocal:

"We judge with high confidence that in fall 2003, Tehran halted its nuclear weapons program; we also assess with moderate-to-high confidence that Tehran at a minimum is keeping open the option to develop nuclear weapons. We assess with moderate confidence Tehran had not restarted its nuclear weapons program as of mid-2007, but we do not know whether it currently intends to develop nuclear weapons.

"Our assessment that Iran halted the program in 2003 primarily in response to international pressure indicates Tehran's decisions are guided by a cost-benefit approach rather than a rush to a weapon irrespective of the political, economic and military costs."

Moreover, as former CIA analyst Ray McGovern noted recently, the NIE's have not changed since then.

An equally important fact ignored by the mainstream media is that the key judgments of that NIE have been revalidated by the intelligence community every year since.

More crucially, there is the matter of "Dubya's" memoirs. Near the end of his term in office he was under immense pressure to authorize a bombing campaign against Iran's civilian nuclear facilities.

But once the 2007 NIEs came out, even the "mission accomplished" President in the bomber jacket was caught up short. As McGovern further notes,

Bush lets it all hang out in his memoir, Decision Points. Most revealingly, he complains bitterly that the NIE "tied my hands on the military side" and called its findings "eye-popping."

A disgruntled Bush writes, "The backlash was immediate ."I don't know why the NIE was written the way it was. Whatever the explanation, the NIE had a big impact – and not a good one."

Spelling out how the Estimate had tied his hands "on the military side," Bush included this (apparently unedited) kicker: "But after the NIE, how could I possibly explain using the military to destroy the nuclear facilities of a country the intelligence community said had no active nuclear weapons program?"

So there you have it. How is it possible to believe that the Iranian's were hell-bent on a nuclear holocaust when they didn't even have a nuclear weapons program?

And why in the world is the Donald taking America and the world to the edge of a utterly unnecessary war in order to force a better deal when the one he shit-canned was more than serviceable?

The answer to that momentous questions lies with the Bombzie Twins (Pompeo and Bolton) and the malign influence of the Donald's son-in-law and Bibi Netanyahu toady, Jared Kushner.

Rarely have a small group of fanatics more dangerously and wantonly jeopardized the security, blood and treasure of the American people.

David Stockman was a two-term Congressman from Michigan. He was also the Director of the Office of Management and Budget under President Ronald Reagan. After leaving the White House, Stockman had a 20-year career on Wall Street. He's the author of three books, The Triumph of Politics: Why the Reagan Revolution Failed , The Great Deformation: The Corruption of Capitalism in America and TRUMPED! A Nation on the Brink of Ruin And How to Bring It Back . He also is founder of David Stockman's Contra Corner and David Stockman's Bubble Finance Trader .

[Jun 27, 2019] Trump has filled his White House with CFR Neocon chickenhawks

And probably, if we just impeach the Walrus of Death nothing will change . Its a freight train to war. It moves slowly at first but its hell to try and stop.
Jun 27, 2019 | www.unz.com

This awesome demonstration of American resolve was meant to be punishment for the vicious slaughter of an expensive U.S. military drone, which was peacefully invading Iranian airspace, and not at all attempting to provoke the Iranians into blowing it out of the sky with a missile so the U.S. military could "retaliate."

The military-industrial complex would never dream of doing anything like that, not even to further the destabilization and restructuring of the Greater Middle East that they've been systematically carrying out the since the collapse of the former Soviet Union, which more on that in just a moment.

[Jun 27, 2019] Monsters Walk the Earth. Why These Three Countries Are the Real Troika of Evil

Notable quotes:
"... For some odd reason, Donald Trump wants to be reelected president in 2020 in spite of the fact that he appears to be uncomfortable in office. A quick, successful war would enhance his chances for a second term, which is probably what Pompeo promised, but any military action that is not immediately decisive would hurt his prospects, quite possibly inflicting fatal damage. ..."
"... Trump apparently had an intercession by Fox news analyst Tucker Carlson, who may have explained that reality to him shortly before he decided to cancel the attack. Tucker is, for what it's worth, a highly respected critic coming from the political right who is skeptical of wars of choice, democracy building and the global liberal order. ..."
"... It is an interesting process to observe how Jewish oligarchs like Sheldon Adelson contribute tens of millions of dollars to the politicians who then in turn give the Jewish state taxpayer generated tens of billions of dollars in return. Bribing corrupt politicians is one of the best investments that one can make in today's America. ..."
Jun 27, 2019 | www.strategic-culture.org

... ... ...

The current foreign policy debate centers around what Washington's next moves in the Middle East might be. The decision-making will inevitably involve the US and its "close allies" Israel and Saudi Arabia, which should not surprise anyone. While it is clear that President Donald Trump ordered an attack on Iran before canceling the action at the last minute, exactly how that played out continues to be unclear. One theory, promoted by the president himself, is that the attack would have been disproportionate, killing possibly hundreds of Iranian military personnel in exchange for one admittedly very expensive surveillance drone. Killing the Iranians would have guaranteed an immediate escalation by Iran, which has both the will and the capability to hit high value targets in and around the Persian Gulf region, a factor that may also have figured into the presidential calculus.

Trump's cancelation of the attack immediately produced cries of rage from the usual neoconservative chickenhawk crowd in Washington as well as a more subdued reiteration of the Israeli and Saudi demands that Iran be punished, though both are also concerned that a massive Iranian retaliation would hit them hard. They are both hoping that Washington's immensely powerful strategic armaments will succeed in knocking Iran out quickly and decisively, but they have also both learned not to completely trust the White House.

To assuage the beast, the president has initiated a package of "major" new sanctions on Iran which will no doubt hurt the Iranian people while not changing government decision making one iota. There has also been a leak of a story relating to US cyber-attacks on Iranian military and infrastructure targets, yet another attempt to act aggressive to mitigate the sounds being emitted by the neocon chorus.

To understand the stop-and-go behavior by Trump requires application of the Occam's Razor principle, i.e. that the simplest explanation is most likely correct. For some odd reason, Donald Trump wants to be reelected president in 2020 in spite of the fact that he appears to be uncomfortable in office. A quick, successful war would enhance his chances for a second term, which is probably what Pompeo promised, but any military action that is not immediately decisive would hurt his prospects, quite possibly inflicting fatal damage.

Trump apparently had an intercession by Fox news analyst Tucker Carlson, who may have explained that reality to him shortly before he decided to cancel the attack. Tucker is, for what it's worth, a highly respected critic coming from the political right who is skeptical of wars of choice, democracy building and the global liberal order.

The truth is that all of American foreign policy during the upcoming year will be designed to pander to certain constituencies that will be crucial to the 2020 presidential election. One can bank on even more concessions being granted to Israel and its murderous thug prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu to bring in Jewish votes and, more importantly, money. John Bolton was already in Israel getting his marching orders from Netanyahu on the weekend and Pence was effusive in his praise of Israel when he spoke at the meeting in Orlando earlier in the week launching the Trump 2020 campaign, so the game is already afoot.

It is an interesting process to observe how Jewish oligarchs like Sheldon Adelson contribute tens of millions of dollars to the politicians who then in turn give the Jewish state taxpayer generated tens of billions of dollars in return. Bribing corrupt politicians is one of the best investments that one can make in today's America.

Trump will also go easy on Saudi Arabia because he wants to sell them billions of dollars' worth of weapons which will make the key constituency of the Military Industrial Complex (MIC) happy. And he will continue to exert "maximum pressure" on Iran and Venezuela to show how tough he can be for his Make America Great audience, though avoiding war if he possibly can just in case any of the hapless victims tries to fight back and embarrass him.

So, there it is folks. War with Iran is for the moment on hold, but tune in again next week as the collective White House memory span runs to only three or four days. By next week we Americans might be at war with Mongolia.

[Jun 27, 2019] Deal of the Century or Eon of Disasters by Jamal Kanj

Jun 27, 2019 | ahtribune.com

The Trumpian hyperbole marketing brand had generated unrealistic expectations for the "Deal of the Century." For over a year and a half, Jared Kushner promised but missed at least three dates to unveil the "secret" plan.

Assisted by two bono fide Zionists, Special Envoy to the Middle East Jason Greenblatt and US Ambassador David Friedman, Kushner's lone political experience with Palestine/Israel is his family's tax deductible contributions to building "Jewish only colonies."

Kushner's predisposed conviction and his parochial bias were palpable in the June 2nd interview with Axios on HBO. In the interview, he opined that Palestinians were not "capable of governing" themselves or become free from Israeli occupation.

After more than a year of hyped promotion, Kushner's Zionist team revealed a scaled down version of Trump's "concrete plan." Evident in the leaked conference agenda, the goal of Kushner's gathering is not to offer economic support to Palestinians, but rather to provide a cover-up for opening the doors of Arab capitals to Israeli officials.

Israel gets the reward of the illusionary peace upfront while US tantalizes to Arabs a peace process that may never materialize. Deferring and circumventing political process is archetypical Israeli trademark strategy that seeks to harvest fruits before the tree blossoms. Hence, the fruits of the US proposed miniature workshop in Bahrain.

MORE...

In the Oslo Accord in 1993, the PLO agreed to recognize Israel, in advance, over 78% of historical Palestine. There was no reciprocal Israeli obligation toward the PLO on the remaining 22% (West Bank, Jerusalem and Gaza).

A quarter of a century later, peace did not blossom and the only implemented sections of the Oslo Accords were the PLO recognition of Israel. In addition, it relieved Israel of administering the life of five million Palestinians, security coordination and outsourcing―free of cost―the security services to the Palestinian Authority.

Meanwhile, Israel continued to violate and effectively buried the Oslo Accords under new expansive "Jewish only colonies" changing the demographics of the population in areas allotted for the future Palestinian state.

Ten years following the Accord, George W Bush proposed a Road Map for peace. To placate Israeli reservations, Bush rewarded Israel, in advance, with an official American letter agreeing to annex "Jewish only colonies" in the West Bank as part of any future peace agreement.

Israel crushed Bush's Road Map under the bulldozers of yet more "Jewish only colonies." The American letter remains the sole outcome of the Road Map. Greenblatt and Friedman are using Bush's letter to advocate Israeli annexation of parts of the West Bank and Jerusalem.

Kushner's economic peace is an age old Israeli contrived gas bubble intends to skirt compliance with international law and UN resolutions. Shimon Peres floated the idea to equivocate Israel's commitments under the Oslo Accords. Current Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu revived it in 2009 to sidestep the American (Bush and Obama) administration's support for two-state solution.

Yet, for quarter of a century since the establishment of the Palestinian authority, Israel had systematically strangled the very economy it (and now Kushner) claims to champion.

Since 1993, the European Union invested billions of dollars in economic infrastructure, including an airport and seaport in Gaza. In 2002 after the failure of Camp David, Israel obliterated both facilities denying Palestinians access to trade and fishing.

To further stifle the economy, Israel erected walls separating farmers from their olive groves and farms, spiked the West Bank with intrusive military checkpoints encumbering the movement of goods, divided towns and cities and misappropriated tax money held on Palestinian imports.

Kushner and Israel's invented economic peace is a political shenanigan to sedate the bird cage (walled) economy, or leverage it in the form of collective punishment to suppress resistance and subjugate Palestinians.

Like Oslo Accords, the Road Map, and now ahead of rolling the political plan for the "Deal of Century", Trump conferred on Israel another advanced installment by recognizing Jerusalem as its capital, cut financial aid to Palestinians including UN organizations, and the annexation of the Syrian Golan Heights without any Israeli concession.

In addition to normalizing contacts between Arabs attending the Manama workshop and Israel (another advanced installment), Kushner's plan would relegate the cost of the caged Palestinian economy to Arab countries, gifting Israel yet more freebies without negotiation.

Kushner economic peace workshop is a false allure to salve Palestinian (and Arab) capitulation before rolling out the eon of all political disasters. Jamal Kanj was born in a Palestinian refugee camp in northern Lebanon ten years after the creation of the state of Israel. He moved to the United States in late 1977, and has been active in various local and national political organizations. Like so many other Palestinians, the life of Jamal Kanj has been an odyssey of conflict, displacement and resettlement and Jamal Kanj is expressing a lifetime experience with the Palestinian diaspora and struggle against and with the occupation through his writings. Jamal Kanj is columnist at several newspapers and websites.

[Jun 27, 2019] Trump's Underwhelming Deal for Palestine and the Gulf Monarchies' Complicated Ties with Israel Consortiumnews

Notable quotes:
"... Telling was the 40-page proposal put out earlier this month by the White House, which used the terms "investment" and "financing" dozens of times, yet never once mentioned "occupation." Dan Kurtzer, who previously served as Washington's ambassador to Israel and Egypt and is now a professor of Middle East policy studies at Princeton University, tweeted : "I would give this so-called plan a 'C' from an undergraduate student. The authors of the plan clearly understand nothing." ..."
"... Can anyone explain the complete inappropriateness & Cronyism of Trump's son in law, Jared Kushner, in negotiating this sham of a Deal? This is the "Con of the Century" not the Deal of the Century? Jared Kushner never got out of Bibi's Bed & his flawed Plan is a $50 Billion dollar loan bribe, a LOAN not a Hand out & where this money is coming from, as it's not coming from America but supposedly from non-existent Arabian Financial sources is a mystery? ..."
"... An investor would have to be an utter idiot to put funds into Palestinian infrastructure because the Israelis would promptly destroy it in their next military incursion. Investment without rock solid perpetual peace is just money down the drain. ..."
Jun 27, 2019 | consortiumnews.com

The U.S.-backed two-day "Peace to Prosperity" summit in Bahrain on Tuesday and Wednesday was designed to advance the Trump administration's vision for resolving the Palestinian-Israeli conflict. But without any significant Palestinian representation at the summit, as well as the absence of any Israeli government officials, the gathering was ultimately little more than a face-saving effort on the White House's part following two years of the administration's "futile" peacemaking efforts.

The conference is understood to have laid the foundation for the "Deal of the Century." The details have yet to be released, although the White House claims it will unveil the plan following Israel's elections in September. Yet some details have leaked, leading the Palestinian Authority to declare it dead on arrival. Virtually all Palestinian factions are united in opposition to it.

Telling was the 40-page proposal put out earlier this month by the White House, which used the terms "investment" and "financing" dozens of times, yet never once mentioned "occupation." Dan Kurtzer, who previously served as Washington's ambassador to Israel and Egypt and is now a professor of Middle East policy studies at Princeton University, tweeted : "I would give this so-called plan a 'C' from an undergraduate student. The authors of the plan clearly understand nothing."

The "workshop" in Bahrain began with President Donald Trump's adviser and son-in-law Jared Kushner delivering a speech in which he unveiled a $50 billion economic package intended to "unleash" the Palestinians' potential as well as help develop neighboring Lebanon and Jordan. Kushner referred to a "bustling tourist center in Gaza" without acknowledging Israel's siege of the coastal strip and the dire humanitarian crises in the blockaded enclave. IMF Director Christine Lagarde spoke about applying lessons from Mozambique to Palestine. Steve Schwarzman, an American billionaire whose personal wealth exceeds Palestine's annual GDP, advised the Palestinians to follow the model of Singapore. The U.S. ambassador to Israel, David Friedman, hailed the "workshop" as an "attempt to jumpstart the Palestinian economy" and "improve the quality of life of Palestinians."

Unrealistic and Disingenuous

Undeniably, the White House's plans for resolving the Palestinian-Israeli conflict are as unrealistic as they are disingenuous. With an ongoing conflict and no clearly defined borders, it is at best naïve to imagine the Occupied Palestinian Territories fostering a climate that is ripe for foreign investment. Building a tourism sector and stimulating vibrant economic growth under occupation are also unrealistic. Whereas Kushner sought to first discuss the economic dimensions of the Palestinians' problems while saving meetings over the political ones for later, he fails to understand how Palestine's economic crises are linked to politics. Put simply, the Palestinians will not be able to achieve economic development through some foreign-driven technocratic plan without finding a solution to the political issues at the heart of the conflict.

The Palestinian view is that the White House is simply trying to liquidate their cause by buying them off with foreign money. Moreover, no experts believe that the Trump administration has the political or diplomatic capital to serve as a credible mediator between the Palestinians and Israel. The White House has absolutely no goodwill among Palestinians, particularly in the aftermath of the administration formally recognizing Jerusalem as Israel's capital and slashing funding for the United Nations Relief and Works Agency.

As the first U.S. administration to officially reject the two-state solution as the basis for resolving the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, the current White House represents an opportunity for Israel to cement its colonization of territory in land annexed during 1967. As such, the "Deal of the Century" is about the consolidation of Israel's occupation of Palestinian land and a way toward establishing a "second homeland" for Palestinians in Jordan and/or Egypt. The Israeli UN ambassador's opinion piece in The New York Times , which called for a Palestinian "surrender" and was published just before the Bahrain summit kicked off, essentially summed up both the Israeli government and the Trump administration's views on the Palestinian question.

GCC-Israel Ties

Nonetheless, although the summit did not raise important questions about Palestinian-Israeli relations, it raised some about Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) member-states and Israel's gradual normalization of ties. That this summit was held in Bahrain was not a major surprise considering that the archipelago kingdom has led the GCC in terms of moving toward normalization of relations with Israel.

Indeed, Bahrain's openness to closer relations with the Jewish state was on display in September 2017 when Prince Nasser bin Hamad al-Khalifa attended a multinational event in Los Angeles where two American rabbis stated that the king of Bahrain had voiced his opposition to the Arab League's economic boycott of Israel. As the "Peace to Prosperity" workshop began, the Bahraini Crown Prince welcomed delegates with a message that called the Bahraini capital, Manama, the Gulf's most religiously diverse city and referenced its tiny Jewish community. Notably, Bahrain's former Jewish ambassador to Washington, Houda Ezra Ebrahim Nonoo, attended the summit.

Much like the dynamics which have brought other GCC member-states closer to Israel, a mutual perception of Iran as a threat is at the heart of Bahrain's interest in establishing warmer ties with Tel Aviv. Yet for Bahrain and other Arabian Peninsula monarchies -- until the Palestinian issue is resolved -- prospects for moving toward a full normalization of relations will remain complicated.

Whereas Kuwait stands out as the only country in the GCC that principally rejects this trend of Gulf states moving in the direction of normalizing ties with Israel, it is the GCC's only semi-democracy, thus this firm "pro-Palestinian" stance partially reflects pressures from Kuwaiti public opinion.

... ... ...


Rong Cao , June 27, 2019 at 13:53

Isn't GCC on the brink of the collapse a while ago when the US congress threatened to sue GCC for manipulate the oil prices? Guess now that the US has become a world major oil exporter, GCC has stood on its way. So the patriarchy inside GCC, namely Saudi Arabia, has been colluding with the US and Israel to pay $50 billion to Palestinians authority for the purchase of Israeli's occupied lands once for all. Indeed a deal of the century for President Trump.

KiwiAntz , June 27, 2019 at 04:28

Can anyone explain the complete inappropriateness & Cronyism of Trump's son in law, Jared Kushner, in negotiating this sham of a Deal? This is the "Con of the Century" not the Deal of the Century? Jared Kushner never got out of Bibi's Bed & his flawed Plan is a $50 Billion dollar loan bribe, a LOAN not a Hand out & where this money is coming from, as it's not coming from America but supposedly from non-existent Arabian Financial sources is a mystery?

And in order to receive this blood money, Palestinian's only have to surrender what's left of their Country & the illegal settlements, any chance of a 2 State solution & other humiliating concessions to Apartheid Israel, such as any Sovereignty claims to their own Lands? And I state it's Palestinian's Land," THEIR COUNTRY" not the illegal, immoral Land Usurper called the Nation of Israel?

This Land of Palestine, illegally occupied since 1948 by repatriated Jews from a devastated, War ravaged Europe, as a bloodguilt reward from the Allies, for their failure in preventing the Holocaust & genocide of the Jews during WW2?The idiotic English came up with the disastrous plan to repatriate these European Jewish people to a already occupied Land called Palestine? And for the record, the Historical Jews lost their claims to these Lands, as was prophesied in the Bible following their rejection & complicity in the Death of the Messiah?

JC stated their "House (or Nation) would be abandoned to them" as a result of their rejection of him, being the Son of God! This was confirmed in the year 70 B.C.E when the Romans destroyed Jerusalem, destroying all their records, the Temple & killing one million people with the survivors taken into captivity! The confirmation of the loss of Divine favour & Gods utter rejection of the Jewish Nation & people was that God allowed the Roman destruction to occur without any direct intervention on his part! That was the end of the Nation State of Ancient Israel! When this happened, it became inhabited by Arab Tribes & gradually became Palestine?

This Modern Day interpretation of a Nation State of Israel is a monstrosity, a human construct not a Theocratic Nation created by God!

This Plan is a utter waste of Time & other peoples money as Palestinian's want a Political solution as mandated by the UN, not a blood money, loan bribe by Trumps crony Capitalist, son in law, in league with Uncle Bibi Netanyahu!

Moi , June 27, 2019 at 02:40

An investor would have to be an utter idiot to put funds into Palestinian infrastructure because the Israelis would promptly destroy it in their next military incursion. Investment without rock solid perpetual peace is just money down the drain.

[Jun 27, 2019] No One Believes the President's War Claims Anymore

Notable quotes:
"... The possibility that the United States might be committing an act of war under false pretenses apparently did little to discourage the president's principal foreign policy advisers, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and National Security Adviser John Bolton, from pushing a military response. Tehran's action was presented as raw aggression, an act of war that deserved retaliation. ..."
"... The president apparently complained to a close associate, "These people want to push us into a war, and it's so disgusting." According to The Wall Street Journal , he further opined, "We don't need any more wars." He's right. But then why has Trump chosen to surround himself with advisers apparently so at variance with his views? ..."
"... Iran is preparing to breach the limits established by the agreement because Washington repudiated it . It is evident that the president doesn't understand the JCPOA or the nuclear issue more generally. ..."
"... Moreover, though he is focused on nuclear issues, his appointees have been demanding far more of Tehran, forestalling negotiations. For instance, last year, Pompeo ordered Iran to abandon its independent foreign policy and dismantle its missile deterrent, while accepting Saudi and American domination of the region. ..."
"... Pompeo's demands look a bit like the ultimatum to Serbia in June 1914 after a nationalist backed by Serbian military intelligence assassinated the heir to the Austro-Hungarian throne. The Austrians set only 10, rather than 12, requirements, but they also were intended to be rejected. Vienna explained to its ally Germany that "the possibility of its acceptance is practically excluded." ..."
"... They were living out what Hermann Goering, on trial at Nuremberg, described in a private conversation to an American officer: "voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked and denounce the pacifists for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. It works the same way in any country." Tragically, he's probably right. ..."
Jun 27, 2019 | www.theamericanconservative.com

... ... ...

Iran predictably claimed that the drone was within its airspace. American officials asserted that it was in international airspace. Reported by The New York Times :

"a senior Trump administration official said there was concern inside the United States government about whether the drone, or another American surveillance aircraft, or even the P-8A manned aircraft flown by a military aircrew, actually did violate Iranian airspace at some point. The official said the doubt was one of the reasons Mr. Trump called off the strike."

The point is worth repeating. The military was prepared to blast away when it wasn't even certain whether America was in the right. The episode brings to mind the 1988 shootdown of an Iranian airliner in the Persian Gulf by the guided missile cruiser USS Vincennes . Initially the U.S. Navy justified its action, making a series of false claims about Iran Air Flight 655, which carried 290 passengers and crew members. Eventually Washington did admit that it had made a horrific mistake, though the Vincennes captain was later decorated.

The possibility that the United States might be committing an act of war under false pretenses apparently did little to discourage the president's principal foreign policy advisers, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and National Security Adviser John Bolton, from pushing a military response. Tehran's action was presented as raw aggression, an act of war that deserved retaliation.

The president apparently complained to a close associate, "These people want to push us into a war, and it's so disgusting." According to The Wall Street Journal , he further opined, "We don't need any more wars." He's right. But then why has Trump chosen to surround himself with advisers apparently so at variance with his views?

Presumably the president believes that he can control his war-happy subordinates, using them as he sees fit. However, his overweening hubris ignores their power to set the agenda and influence his choices. Consider the basic question of objectives regarding Iran. Trump now says all he wants to do is keep nukes out of Tehran's hands: "Never can Iran have a nuclear weapon," he intoned after halting the proposed reprisal, adding that "restraint" has its limits. But the nuclear accord was drafted to forestall an Iranian nuclear weapon. Iran is preparing to breach the limits established by the agreement because Washington repudiated it . It is evident that the president doesn't understand the JCPOA or the nuclear issue more generally.

Moreover, though he is focused on nuclear issues, his appointees have been demanding far more of Tehran, forestalling negotiations. For instance, last year, Pompeo ordered Iran to abandon its independent foreign policy and dismantle its missile deterrent, while accepting Saudi and American domination of the region.

These mandates were an obvious non-starter -- what sovereign nation voluntarily accepts puppet status? In fact, Pompeo admitted that he didn't expect Iran to surrender, but instead hoped for a popular revolution. In recently stating that the administration would negotiate without preconditions, he added that Washington expected Iran to act like "a normal nation," meaning behaving just as he'd demanded last year. (Notably, there was no offer for America to act like a normal country.)

Sanctions: Trump's Cruel Substitute for an Actual Iran Policy A Century Later, the Versailles Treaty Still Haunts Our World

Pompeo's demands look a bit like the ultimatum to Serbia in June 1914 after a nationalist backed by Serbian military intelligence assassinated the heir to the Austro-Hungarian throne. The Austrians set only 10, rather than 12, requirements, but they also were intended to be rejected. Vienna explained to its ally Germany that "the possibility of its acceptance is practically excluded."

Once it became evident that no one would willingly back down and conflict was likely, Germany's Kaiser and Russia's Tsar tried to halt the rush to war. However, they found themselves hemmed in by the war plans created by their nominal subordinates. With Austria-Hungary mobilizing against Serbia, Russia had to act to protect the latter. Germany then faced a two-front war. Thus, to aid its ally in Vienna, the Germans had to mobilize quickly in an attempt to defeat France before Russia could put its massive army into the field. No one had sufficient time for diplomacy.

However, cousins Kaiser Wilhelm and Tsar Nicholas did engage in a last minute "Willy-Nicky" exchange of telegrams. Wilhelm warned Nicholas that general Russian mobilization would require Germany to act, with war the result. In response, the tsar switched from general to partial mobilization. But he was soon besieged by his top officials who insisted that the entire army had to be called up.

Understanding that general mobilization meant war, the tsar observed: "Think of the responsibility you are asking me to take! Think of the thousands and thousands of men who will be sent to their deaths." But he gave in, approving mobilization on the evening of July 30. Nicholas's concern was warranted. More than 1.7 million Russian soldiers, along with hundreds of thousands of civilians, died in the conflict. The ensuing Russian Civil War was even more deadly, indeed far more so for noncombatants, among them the tsar and his family.

Kaiser Wilhelm was equally at the mercy of the "France-first" Schlieffen Plan. To wait would be to invite destruction between the French and Russians, so he approved German mobilization on August 1. He predicted the war would lead to "endless misery," and so it did. In 1918, he was forced to abdicate and he lived out his life in exile.

Pompeo, Bolton, and like-minded officials tried and failed to force another war last week. Next time they may succeed in leaving the president with no practical choice but the one they favor. In which case he will find himself starting the very conflict that he had declared against.

Ongoing administration machinations -- exacerbated by the opportunity to manipulate a president -- offer an important reminder as to the Founders' wisdom. Delegates to the Constitutional Convention made clear their intention to break with monarchical practice, minimizing the president's authority. Congress was assigned the powers to raise armies, decide on the rules of war, issue letters of marque and reprisal, and ratify treaties. Most importantly, the legislative branch alone could declare war.

As commander-in-chief, the president could defend against attack, but he could not even order a retaliatory strike without congressional authority. Wrote James Madison to Thomas Jefferson: "The Constitution supposes, what the History of all Governments demonstrates, that the Executive is the branch of power most interested in war, and most prone to it. It has accordingly with studied care vested the question of war in the Legislature." Delegate James Wilson insisted that the Constitution was intended to "guard against" being hurried into war: "It will not be in the power of a single man, or a single body of men, to involve us in such distress, for the important power of declaring war is vested in the legislature at large."

Most important, placing the war power with Congress ensured that the people would be heard. Of course, even that is not enough today. Presidents have adeptly concocted "evidence" and misled the public, such as during the lead-up to the invasion of Iraq.

They were living out what Hermann Goering, on trial at Nuremberg, described in a private conversation to an American officer: "voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked and denounce the pacifists for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. It works the same way in any country." Tragically, he's probably right.

However, the Iraq debacle has resulted in greater skepticism of presidential claims. The Trump administration's unsupported judgment that Iran was behind attacks on oil tankers was greeted at home and abroad with a demand for more evidence. People were conscious of having been repeatedly played by Washington and did not want a repeat. Many found the U.S. government no more trustworthy than Iranian authorities, a humbling equivalence. And given the doubts apparently voiced by Pentagon officials out of public view, such skepticism was well-founded.

Last week, Donald Trump declared, "I want to get out of these endless wars." Unlike his predecessors, the president apparently recognizes the temptation to sacrifice lives for political gain. However, alone he will find it nearly impossible to face down the bipartisan War Party. The best way to get out of endless wars is to not get in them in the first place. And that requires changing personnel and respecting the constitutional limits established by the nation's Founders.

Doug Bandow is a senior fellow at the Cato Institute and a former special assistant to President Ronald Reagan. He is the author of Foreign Follies: America's New Global Empire


Kent 8 hours ago

Unfortunately, the President is attempting to walk a tight-rope between peace and the most prominent funders of the GOP. Sheldon Adelson and his ilk are bent on the destruction of any nation that stands in the way of Israeli expansion. And of course military contractors need constant growth in tax-payer funding to support their margins and shareholder value. Hence the blustering to appease the aforementioned and keep the bribes flowing, while backing down to appease the base.

It would of course be in the interests of the base to oppose the bribe-taking to begin with, but I assume that must be beyond their intellectual capacity. Or perhaps they're simply in favor of it for ideological reasons.

Adriana Pena 14 hours ago
Please stop this "czar good, ministers bad" narrative when discussing Trump standing up to the war party.

Trump hired Bolton
Trump hired Pompeo
Trump made the torturer Gina the head of the CIA

For someone who does not want war, he managed to put war lovers in sensitive posts.

John Michener 15 hours ago
We might as well be honest about it. All politicians over simplify, shade the truth, and occasionally lie. But Trump's falsehoods are so continuous and extensive that there is no reason to believe anything he says - everything needs to be validated against external authorities - which is why he is so intent on tearing down all authorities that could contradict him.
Clyde Schechter 15 hours ago
This is another in the long line of stories we are reading here (and in other places) that Trump really doesn't want to get involved in a war but is being manipulated by Bolton, Pompeo and the national security apparatus. Sorry, but I don't buy it.

Trump hired Bolton and Pompeo. Even somebody as apparently dimwitted as Trump could not possibly have failed to notice that they were warmongers. Indeed, Bolton is probably the most extreme warmonger around: he has an extensive public record of advocating war with Iran for about two decades now. I cannot believe that even Trump was unaware of this. And even if he was, why hasn't he fired them? He doesn't need anybody's permission to do that. Let's get real: Trump is every bit the warmonger as the people he hires. His statements to the contrary are just more additions to his endless string of lies.

What's more, he has another way to avoid being cornered into starting a war. All he has to do in that circumstance is acknowledge that the constitution doesn't grant him that authority and toss the decision making to Congerss, where it legally belongs. But he has done nothing that suggests he acknowledges that constitutional delegation of authority--even though it could provide him a way out if he felt he needed one.

So, no. I don't believe for a minute that Trump wants to avoid war. Actions speak louder than words, especially Trump's words.

JJ 17 hours ago
You're falling for the "official" report that he called off the attack merely because 150 lives were at stake? Since when did he all of a sudden grow a conscious after the inexcusable defense he gave for our irresponsible military and intelligence ventures? He even bypasses Congress itself by his illegal presidential will to give weapons to the SAUDIS. The tyrannical, radical, scourge of humanity tribal savages turned psychopathic oligarchs that is the House of Saud.

Let's be perfectly honest with ourselves, Tucker Carson (a f*cking tv show host of all people) convinced a US president to not commit to another illegal war. Not because lives were at stake, heavens no. It's because going into a disastrous war with Iran would gauruntee his chances of not getting re-elected.

The American government is a living parody with no hope of redemption.

HenionJD 9 hours ago
The President's almost daily outpouring of gibberish gives one little confidence that the notion of 'the truth' holds any importance for him or his crew. Who needs historical precedents to establish a feeling of mistrust when even the simplest statements from the White House are so often needlessly loaded with misapprehensions, distortions and out right BS?
EliteCommInc. 15 hours ago
" He's right. But then why has Trump chosen to surround himself with advisers apparently so at variance with his views?"

I get this, position. You present an incredibly tough front as you press an entirely different goal. The problem is that the president has presented a very tough front himself. So when it appears to to actually be tough, he comes across as "not so much". It even provides opportunity to grand him fearful. In the scenario that I think is being played out or made to appear to play out --- the good cop, the reasonable cop has to sound reasonable all the time. He has to claim to be holding back the forces of evil that threaten to consume the target. But the president has been leading the way as "bad cop" so in the mind the targets, there are no good cops.

But in my view, all of this hoollla baaaloooey about Iran is a distraction to the real threat

the border. And the only common ground to be had is to enforce the law. That is why I think the president is weak. For all of the tough talk --- he folded -- again on immigration. Pretending to get concessions that is by agreement already expected from Mexico is the such naked weakness that launching hypersonic missiles obliterating Tehran would just give him sandals.

Uhhhh, no. I don't regret my vote. And and I still want the wall built and the laws enforced and the sovereignty of the US respected by guests and citizens alike,.

[Jun 26, 2019] Cost of potential US war with Iran $250 oil another Afghanistan

Notable quotes:
"... Should such a war really happen, the stakes would be very high, so there is every reason to assume that Iran's missiles would not only be equipped with conventional high explosive fragmentation warheads, but would also carry toxic agents and dirty bombs. ..."
"... even a handful of Tehran's missiles reaching critical infrastructure in the Persian Gulf region would be enough to cause devastation. ..."
"... On top of that, there are more questions than answers regarding the reliability of the antimissile and air defense systems that the Persian Gulf monarchies deployed to defend their hydrocarbon terminals and other oil and gas infrastructure. ..."
"... To solve the problem of Iran once and for all, the US would need to mount a large-scale ground operation, with the US Army invading the country. America would have to wipe out both regular Iranian forces and the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, unseat the current leadership of Iran, and have a military presence in every major city for the next 10 to 15 years, keeping tight control over the entire country at the same time. ..."
Jun 26, 2019 | www.rt.com

Iran's downing of a US military surveillance drone last week predictably led to another flare-up in tense relations between Tehran and Washington. What could be the implications of a potential conflict between the two nations? Right after the Global Hawk UAV was shot down, the New York Times reported that US President Donald Trump approved military strikes against Iran, but then changed his mind.

Let's start by saying that the decision to launch a military operation against Iran (which is what this is really about), including the specific time and place, would have to be taken by a very small group of top US political and military officials. At such meetings, no leaks could possibly occur by definition.

Now, let's take a look at some of the details. The difference between a 'strike' and an 'operation' is quite significant, at the very least in terms of duration, and forces and equipment involved. It would be nice to know if the NYT actually meant a single airstrike or an entire air operation.

Also on rt.com US lapdog Jeremy Hunt prepping British public for war with Iran, just in case Trump asks

Amusingly enough, the publication reported that the strikes were scheduled for early morning to minimize the potential death toll among the Iranian military and civilians. It's worth pointing out that the US has never cared about the number of victims either among the military personnel or the civilian population of its adversaries.

Moreover, the purpose of any military conflict is to do as much damage to your enemy as possible in terms of personnel, military hardware and other equipment. This is how the goals of any armed conflict are achieved. Of course, it would be best if civilian losses are kept to a minimum, but for the US it's more of a secondary rather than a primary objective.

The US Navy and Air Force traditionally strike before dawn with one purpose alone – to avoid the antiaircraft artillery (both small and medium-caliber), as well as a number of air defense systems with optical tracking, firing at them. Besides, a strike in the dark hours of the day affects the morale of the enemy personnel.

Here we need to understand that Iran would instantly retaliate, and Tehran has no small capabilities for that. In other words, it would be a full-scale war. For the US, it wouldn't end with one surgical airstrike without consequences, like in Syria. And the US seems to have a very vague idea on what a military victory over Iran would look like.

Also on rt.com US will not 'stumble into' war with Iran by mistake. If it happens, it will be by design

There is no doubt that a prolonged air campaign by the US will greatly undermine Iran's military and economic potential and reduce the country to the likes of Afghanistan, completely destroying its hydrocarbon production and exports industries.

To say how long such a campaign could last would be too much of a wild guess, but we have the examples of Operation Desert Storm in 1991 when airstrikes lasted for 38 days, and Yugoslavia in 1991 when the bombing continued for 78 days. So, theoretically, the US could bomb Iran for, say, 100 days, wrecking the country's economy and infrastructure step by step.

However, the price the US would have to pay for starting such a military conflict may turn out to be too high.

For instance, Iran can respond to US aggression by launching intermediate and shorter-range ballistic missiles to target oil and gas fields and terminals in Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Kuwait, and the UAE.

Should such a war really happen, the stakes would be very high, so there is every reason to assume that Iran's missiles would not only be equipped with conventional high explosive fragmentation warheads, but would also carry toxic agents and dirty bombs.

Firstly, it should be pointed out that even though the capabilities of US intelligence agencies are almost limitless, quite a few Iranian missile launching sites remain undiscovered. Secondly, US air defense systems in the Persian Gulf, no matter how effective, would not shoot down every last Iranian missile. And even a handful of Tehran's missiles reaching critical infrastructure in the Persian Gulf region would be enough to cause devastation.

On top of that, there are more questions than answers regarding the reliability of the antimissile and air defense systems that the Persian Gulf monarchies deployed to defend their hydrocarbon terminals and other oil and gas infrastructure.

Also on rt.com $300 oil? US war with Iran spells catastrophe for global economy, expert tells RT

If such a scenario came true, that would bring inconceivable chaos to the global economy and would immediately drive up oil prices to $200-250 per barrel – and that's the lowest estimate. It is these implications that are most likely keeping the US from attacking Iran.

To solve the problem of Iran once and for all, the US would need to mount a large-scale ground operation, with the US Army invading the country. America would have to wipe out both regular Iranian forces and the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, unseat the current leadership of Iran, and have a military presence in every major city for the next 10 to 15 years, keeping tight control over the entire country at the same time.

For the record, the US failed to do that even in Afghanistan, which is several times smaller than Iran in terms of both territory and population. And almost 18 years of fighting later, the US has achieved next to nothing.

Think your friends would be interested? Share this story!

The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of RT.

[Jun 25, 2019] It is the ADELSON Administration . .... Bought and PAID FOR.

Highly recommended!
Notable quotes:
"... Remember how "rich" Trump was "self funded" and therefore could not be influenced by contributions?"! Well $259 million bought him. Those funds came from Sheldon and Miriam Adelson, Paul Singer and Bernard Marcus, donors who have made no secret of their desire for the United States to destroy the Islamic Republic. Adelson, who alongside his wife Miriam are the biggest donors to Trump and the GOP, contributed $205 million to Republicans in the past two cycles and reportedly sent $35 million Trump's presidential bid. ..."
"... Trump has diverted American resources to granting Sheldon Adelson's every wish for a FOREIGN nation. Trump has NOT fulfilled his DUTY and Promises to the American People as he has focused on Israel. Trump is attempting to embroil this Nation in a foreign war through blatant LIES. FIRST Trump claims scuba divers planted 90lb. Limpet mines 12 feet up the side of a ship while bobbing in the water! ..."
"... SECOND Iran shoots down US drone. I am surprised more are not shot down. Usually the US uses them against defenseless enemies, but that is apparently not the case with Iran. What if Russia starts flying drones over OUR coastline? ..."
"... CURE: Trump, Adelson, Kushner, Pompeo, Bolton, need to go on trial for treason. ..."
Jun 25, 2019 | turcopolier.typepad.com

william chandler , 25 June 2019 at 04:16 PM

It is the ADELSON Administration . .... Bought and PAID FOR.

Remember how "rich" Trump was "self funded" and therefore could not be influenced by contributions?"! Well $259 million bought him. Those funds came from Sheldon and Miriam Adelson, Paul Singer and Bernard Marcus, donors who have made no secret of their desire for the United States to destroy the Islamic Republic. Adelson, who alongside his wife Miriam are the biggest donors to Trump and the GOP, contributed $205 million to Republicans in the past two cycles and reportedly sent $35 million Trump's presidential bid.

Sheldon Adelson BRIBED Trump and the Republicans .... This does not include the "favorable and unusual" so-called loans granted Kushner and ?Trump? who is notorious for being in financial difficulty and is desperately hiding his taxes.Trump has lots of energy for defending his tax returns but very little for defending Our borders. Trump's lawyers will appeal and fight this tooth and nail for his Taxes.

But when some P.O.S. "judge" treasonously rules against defending this Nation's borders from Invaders Trump just shruggs and submits.

Makes empty threats about where to put the Invaders, and goes back to putting ISRAEL FIRST.

CURE: Trump, Adelson, Kushner, Pompeo, Bolton, need to go on trial for treason.

[Jun 25, 2019] Tulsi on Iraq war and Trump administration and some interesting information about Bolton

With minor comment editions for clarity...
Looks like Bolton is dyed-in-the-wool imperialist. He believes the United States can do what wants without regard to international law, treaties or the роlitical commitments of previous administrations.
Notable quotes:
"... Israel is an Anglo American aircraft carrier to control the Eastern Mediterranean ..."
Jun 25, 2019 | www.unz.com

J. Gutierrez says: June 24, 2019 at 5:37 pm GMT 300 Words

...Look at this man's video and remember he is a pervert, warmonger and a coward!

https://www.youtube.com/embed/hs35O_TBbbU

Ma Laoshi , says: June 24, 2019 at 11:56 pm GMT

@J. Gutierrez

...Zionists know what they want, are willing to work together towards their goals, and put their money where their mouth is. In contrast, for a few pennies the goyim will renounce any principle they pretend to cherish, and go on happily proclaiming the opposite even if a short while down the road it'll get their own children killed.

The real sad part about this notion of the goy as a mere beast in human form is maybe not that it got codified for eternity in the Talmud, but rather that there may be some truth to it? Another way of saying this is raising the question whether the goyim deserve better, given what we see around us.

Saka Arya , says: June 25, 2019 at 7:02 am GMT
@Malla

Israel is an Anglo American aircraft carrier to control the Eastern Mediterranean and prevent a Turko Egyptian and possibly Persian invasion of Greece & the West

[Jun 25, 2019] The danger of assigning too outsize role to Israeli lobby influence in shaping the USA foreign policy

Highly recommended!
Notable quotes:
"... Are you saying that if AIPAC and the other Zionist lobbies decided overnight to stop lobbying and influencing the American government, American imperial aggression would also cease and the United States would be a peaceful country and only deploy its military in genuine self-defense? Were the Zionists behind the atomic bomb drops on Japan, the Korean War, the war on Vietnam, the expansion of NATO, antagonizing Russia and every other case of US imperial aggression? By all means, present your evidence. ..."
"... Israeli and Zionist propaganda has long played up the supposed threat of global anti-Semitism to justify their colonial state's existence ..."
"... People like you who see "Zionists" in every shadow help their cause by playing into their propaganda. ..."
"... If you're looking for a culprit to pin the empire's imperialist tendencies on, try global capitalism. ..."
Jun 25, 2019 | www.moonofalabama.org

Daniel , Jun 25, 2019 11:03:27 AM | 191

@Kelli 17
Since the American people refuse to overthrow their Zionist occupied gov, maybe Iran will bravely do what we cannot.

Are you saying that if AIPAC and the other Zionist lobbies decided overnight to stop lobbying and influencing the American government, American imperial aggression would also cease and the United States would be a peaceful country and only deploy its military in genuine self-defense? Were the Zionists behind the atomic bomb drops on Japan, the Korean War, the war on Vietnam, the expansion of NATO, antagonizing Russia and every other case of US imperial aggression? By all means, present your evidence.

It seems to me the only people who would believe this are

  1. extremely naive and gullible fools, perhaps duped by far-right propaganda,
  2. Americans who want to evade responsibility for their country's ongoing imperial legacy,
  3. a combination of a & b, and
  4. someone who has an unhealthy obsession with Zionists and/or Jews.

Israeli and Zionist propaganda has long played up the supposed threat of global anti-Semitism to justify their colonial state's existence and savage repression of the Palestinians. People like you who see "Zionists" in every shadow help their cause by playing into their propaganda.

If you're looking for a culprit to pin the empire's imperialist tendencies on, try global capitalism. (Or maybe you think that's controlled by "Zionists", too?)

[Jun 25, 2019] This is how the USA hypocrisy looks like: Punish Iran because one day in the far off future they may develop an atomic bomb but gift Israel $3 billion a year while it harbors hundreds of nukes

With minor edits for clarity
Notable quotes:
"... This is how the USA hypocrisy looks like: Punish Iran because one day in the far off future they may develop an atomic bomb but gift Israel $3 billion a year while it harbors hundreds of nukes. ..."
"... Meanwhile, pat head choppers like Saudi Arabia on the head -- As long as they buys billions in US weapons and force nations to use US dollars to buy oil. ..."
Jun 25, 2019 | www.theamericanconservative.com

MrNIKOLA 2 days ago

This is how the USA hypocrisy looks like: Punish Iran because one day in the far off future they may develop an atomic bomb but gift Israel $3 billion a year while it harbors hundreds of nukes.

Meanwhile, pat head choppers like Saudi Arabia on the head -- As long as they buys billions in US weapons and force nations to use US dollars to buy oil.

[Jun 25, 2019] Patrick Clawson of the influential neo-con Washington Institute for Near East Studies suggests that the US should provoke Iran into taking the first shot. Pompeo claims that God may have send Trump to save Israel from Iran

Jun 25, 2019 | www.moonofalabama.org

John Smith , Jun 24, 2019 3:26:20 PM | 19

Pompeo says God may have sent Trump to save Israel from Iran -- BBC, 22 March 2019

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has said it is "possible" that President Donald Trump was sent by God to save Israel from Iran.

In an interview with the Christian Broadcasting Network during a high-profile trip to Israel, he said it was his faith that made him believe that.

He also praised US efforts to "make sure that this democracy in the Middle East, that this Jewish state, remains".

The comments came on a Jewish holiday celebrating rescue from genocide.

The holiday, Purim, commemorates the biblical rescue of the Jewish people by Queen Esther from the Persians, as the interviewer noted to Mr Pompeo.

What did Pompeo say?

He was asked if "President Trump right now has been sort of raised for such a time as this, just like Queen Esther, to help save the Jewish people from an Iranian menace".

"As a Christian, I certainly believe that's possible," said Mr Pompeo, a former member of Congress for Kansas and CIA director.

"I am confident that the Lord is at work here," he added.

<...>


ben , Jun 24, 2019 3:30:50 PM | 20

I continue to believe this is all theater, with DJT continuing his role as "carnival barker".

I just can't believe the elites will sacrifice the world's economy with a wider war, but then, I've always heard, the big rollers make money whether the market is up, or down.

Is that feasible? Maybe we'll see.

At this point, I could really care less.

michaelj72 , Jun 24, 2019 3:31:55 PM | 21
thanks Bernard.... especially good reporting / analysis on all of this the past week or two.

I expect no good to come of any of this sanction bs.

we all know that the Saudi Arabian and UAE militaries are next to useless without the US, so that's a real coalition of the reckless and worthless for ya.... I expect that kiss ass trudeau and Canada are already on board..... I doubt if any Europeans except the colonialist Brits will take that poisoned bait

zero hedge reports today that military build up in that area continues:

".....The US Navy confirmed early Monday that more military ships have arrived in the US 5th Fleet area of responsibility, which includes the Persian Gulf and Middle East waters. Though not pinpointing their exact location, the additional deployment which comes in the wake of last week's US drone shoot down by Iran, that saw Washington coming very close to launching major strikes in response, is described in Navy statements as including a major amphibious assault ship and two support vessels....

John Smith , Jun 24, 2019 3:38:02 PM | 22
Israel Lobbyist - We Need a False Flag to Start War with Iran!

Patrick Clawson of the influential neo-con Washington Institute for Near East Studies OPENLY suggests that the US should provoke Iran into taking the first shot.

Israel Lobbyist suggests False Flag attack to start war with Iran. Just like 911 in New York causing the deaths of American civilians and soldiers, a million dead Iraqis and for what?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PfoaLbbAix0
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b7RuaHDOcdU

[Jun 24, 2019] Netanyahu's Iran Dilemma: Getting Trump to Act Without Putting Israel on the Front Line.

Jun 24, 2019 | www.moonofalabama.org

Oscar Peterson , Jun 23, 2019 10:13:46 AM | 2

This recent 19 May piece from Ha'aretz documents precisely the manipulation of American policy by Israeli charlatans and their agents of influence in the US. The title says it all just by itself: "Netanyahu's Iran Dilemma: Getting Trump to Act Without Putting Israel on the Front Line." It goes on to assess that:
"In this conflict, Israel is hoping to have its cake and eat it too. Ever since Trump was elected president two and a half years ago, Netanyahu has been urging him to take a more aggressive line toward Iran, in order to force it to make additional concessions on its nuclear program and disrupt its support for militant organizations.

"Trump acceded to this urging a year ago when he withdrew America from the nuclear agreement with Iran. That was followed by tighter sanctions on Iran, as well as publication of a plan by U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo detailing 12 steps Tehran must take to satisfy Washington.

"But Israel isn't interested in being part of the front. That is why Jerusalem has issued so few official statements on the Iranian issue, and why Netanyahu has urged ministers to be cautious in what they say."

I'd say that passage captures the situation perfectly, and it just goes to show that when you want to know about what chicanery Israel and its lobby are up to in the US, you have to go and look at what Israelis are saying when they aren't particularly careful about who's observing. That sort of truth is sanitized from any MSM accounts in the US.

[Jun 23, 2019] Iranian UN envoy condemns unlawful destabilizing measures by US

Jun 20, 2019 | www.rt.com

Iran's envoy to the United Nations has called on the international community to end "unlawful destabilizing measures" by the US, declaring that while Iran does not seek war, it "reserves the right to counter any hostile act."

Iranian envoy to the UN Majid Takht Ravanchi has condemned continuing US provocations that culminated Thursday morning in the downing of an American surveillance drone by the Iranian air force over Hormozgan province.

The drone "had turned off its identification equipment and [was] engaged in a clear spying operation," Ravanchi confirmed in a letter to UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, adding that the aircraft had ignored "repeated radio warnings" in order to enter Iranian airspace near the Strait of Hormuz.

[Jun 22, 2019] Chuck Schumer 'The American People Deserve A President Who Can More Credibly Justify War With Iran'

Highly recommended!
Jun 20, 2019 | politics.theonion.com

In a pointed critique of President Trump's foreign policy leadership, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer stated to members of the press Thursday that "the American people deserve a president who can more credibly justify war with Iran."

"What the American people need is a president who can make a much more convincing case for going to war with Iran," said Schumer (D-NY), adding that the Trump administration's corruption and dishonesty have "proven time and time again" that it lacks the conviction necessary to act as an effective cheerleader for the conflict.

"Donald Trump is completely unfit to assume the mantle of telling the American people what they need to hear in order to convince them a war with Iran is a good idea.

One of the key duties of the president is to gain the trust of the people so that they feel comfortable going along with whatever he says. President Trump's failure to serve as a credible advocate for this war is yet another instance in which he has disappointed not only his colleagues in Washington, but also the entire nation."

Schumer later concluded his statement with a vow that he and his fellow Democrats will continue working toward a more palatable case in favor of bombing Iran.

[Jun 22, 2019] Donald Trump likes to think of himself as a statesman, an author, an A-level negotiator but at heart, he's one thing: an insult comic

Add to this that he is in the pocket of Israel lobby and that helps to explain most of his actions.
Jun 16, 2019 | www.politico.com

President Donald Trump likes to think of himself as a statesman, an author, an A-level negotiator, but at heart, he's one thing: an insult comic.

Every day in D.C. is a roast, the insults and belittling nicknames wielded like tiny comedy bullets. And if you haven't seen enough of the fusillade on Twitter, all you need to do is turn on late night TV. Television comedy has a strange, symbiotic relationship with the real political world, something between a feedback loop and a funhouse mirror....

... ... ...

[Jun 22, 2019] Trump on Iran threat now and then

Oct 22, 2012 | www.unz.com

Donald J. Trump @realDonaldTrump

Don't let Obama play the Iran card in order to start a war in order to get elected--be careful Republicans!

11:43 AM 22 Oct 12 Twitter Web Client

[Jun 22, 2019] Helen Thomas 'Jews don't have the right to take other people's land'

While this interview is mostly about the right of Palestinians, Helen touches the power of Israel lobby as well
Notable quotes:
"... the jewish lobby in the US are so afraid of Americans ventilating a non-positive view of Israel. Is Israel above criticism??? ..."
"... It is simply a fact the the Zionist lobby got the whole American media and the political elite firmly by their balls ..."
Jun 22, 2019 | www.youtube.com
am1966ath , 7 years ago

@SaarVardi

the jewish lobby in the US are so afraid of Americans ventilating a non-positive view of Israel. Is Israel above criticism???

peachees , 7 years ago

Thank you Helen for your bravery and honesty against the evil, stupid, hypocritical Zionists... Zionists don't want us to know the truth and steal our tax dollars for Israel. NO!

rain1ny , 7 years ago

I Love Helen Thomas, the truth is always crystal clear.

Tanblondalex , 7 years ago

Helen is a HEROOOOOOOOOO the fact that Zionists control the media in the USA doesn't make right wrong, and wrong right

RasputinStream , 7 years ago

It is simply a fact the the Zionist lobby got the whole American media and the political elite firmly by their balls

[Jun 21, 2019] Forget Trump's 'deal of the century'. Israel was always on course to annexation by Jonathan Cook

Israel is just another 'settlers" country. It might be successful or it might fail like South Africa and Rhodesia. The survival of Israel as the settler country hinges on the USA unconditional support as yet another (stealth) USA state, and the continuation of the role of the USA as the world hegemon and the center of the global neoliberal empire. . The USA position as for Israel might eventually change with the collapse of neoliberalism.
One problem that creates negative attitude to Israel around the world (according to BBC data only the USA and a couple of African countries having the majority of population that views Israel positively) is, as one commenter observed, the situation in which "The Children of the Holocaust survivors, born into Israel, have now become the "Holocaust-ers of Palestine"
Jun 21, 2019 | www.unz.com

When Israeli prime ministers are in trouble, facing difficult elections or a corruption scandal, the temptation has typically been for them to unleash a military operation to bolster their standing. In recent years, Gaza has served as a favourite punching bag.

Benjamin Netanyahu is confronting both difficulties at once: a second round of elections in September that he may struggle to win; and an attorney general who is widely expected to indict him on corruption charges shortly afterwards.

Netanyahu is in an unusually tight spot, even by the standards of an often chaotic and fractious Israeli political system. After a decade in power, his electoral magic may be deserting him. There are already rumblings of discontent among his allies on the far right.

Given his desperate straits, some observers fear that he may need to pull a new kind of rabbit out of the hat.

In the past two elections, Netanyahu rode to success after issuing dramatic last-minute statements. In 2015, he agitated against the fifth of Israel's citizens who are Palestinian asserting their democratic rights, warning that they were "coming out in droves to vote".

Back in April, he declared his intention to annex large chunks of the occupied West Bank, in violation of international law, during the next parliament.

Amos Harel, a veteran military analyst with Haaretz newspaper, observed last week that Netanyahu may decide words are no longer enough to win. Action is needed, possibly in the form of an announcement on the eve of September's ballot that as much as two-thirds of the West Bank is to be annexed.

Washington does not look like it will stand in his way.

Shortly before April's election, the Trump administration offered Netanyahu a campaign fillip by recognising Israel's illegal annexation of the Golan Heights, territory Israel seized from Syria in 1967.

This month David Friedman, US ambassador to Israel and one of the chief architects of Donald Trump's long-delayed "deal of the century" peace plan, appeared to offer a similar, early election boost.

In interviews, he claimed Israel was "on the side of God" – unlike, or so it was implied, the Palestinians. He further argued that Israel had the "right to retain" much of the West Bank.

Both statements suggest that the Trump administration will not object to any Israeli moves towards annexation, especially if it ensures their favoured candidate returns to power.

Whatever Friedman suggests, it is not God who has intervened on Israel's behalf. The hands that have carefully cleared a path over many decades to the West Bank's annexation are all too human.

Israeli officials have been preparing for this moment for more than half a century, since the West Bank, East Jerusalem and Gaza were seized back in 1967.

That point is underscored by an innovative interactive map of the occupied territories. This valuable new resource is a joint project of the Israeli human rights group B'Tselem and Forensic Architecture, a London-based team that uses new technology to visualise and map political violence and environmental destruction.

Titled Conquer and Divide , it reveals in detail how Israel has "torn apart Palestinian space, divided the Palestinian population into dozens of disconnected enclaves and unravelled its social, cultural and economic fabric".

The map proves beyond doubt that Israel's colonisation of the West Bank was never accidental, defensive or reluctant. It was coldly calculated and intricately planned, with one goal in mind – and the moment to realise that goal is fast approaching.

Annexation is not a right-wing project that has hijacked the benign intentions of Israel's founding generation. Annexation was on the cards from the occupation's very beginnings in 1967, when the so-called centre-left – now presented as a peace-loving alternative to Netanyahu – ran the government.

The map shows how Israeli military planners created a complex web of pretexts to seize Palestinian land: closed military zones today cover a third of the West Bank; firing ranges impact 38 Palestinian communities; nature reserves are located on 6 per cent of the territory; nearly a quarter has been declared Israeli "state" land; some 250 settlements have been established; dozens of permanent checkpoints severely limit movement; and hundreds of kilometres of walls and fences have been completed.

These interlocking land seizures seamlessly carved up the territory, establishing the walls of dozens of tightly contained prisons for Palestinians in their own homeland.

Two Nasa satellite images of the region separated by 30 years – from 1987 and 2017 – reveal how Israel's settlements and transport infrastructure have gradually scarred the West Bank's landscape, clearing away natural vegetation and replacing it with concrete.

The land grabs were not simply about acquisition of territory. They were a weapon, along with increasingly draconian movement restrictions, to force the native Palestinian population to submit, to recognise its defeat, to give up hope.

In the immediate wake of the West Bank's occupation, defence minister Moshe Dayan, Israel's hero of the hour and one of the architects of the settlement project, observed that Palestinians should be made "to live like dogs, and whoever wants to can leave – and we shall see where this process leads".

Although Israel has concentrated Palestinians in 165 disconnected areas across the West Bank, its actions effectively won the international community's seal of approval in 1995. The Oslo accords cemented Israel's absolute control over 62 per cent of the West Bank, containing the Palestinians' key agricultural land and water sources, which was classified as Area C.

Occupations are intended to be temporary – and the Oslo accords promised the same. Gradually, the Palestinians would be allowed to take back more of their territory to build a state. But Israel made sure both the occupation and the land thefts sanctioned by Oslo continued.

The new map reveals more than just the methods Israel used to commandeer the West Bank. Decades of land seizures highlight a trajectory, plotting a course that indicates the project is still not complete.

ORDER IT NOW

If Netanyahu partially annexes the West Bank – Area C – it will be simply another stage in Israel's tireless efforts to immiserate the Palestinian population and bully them into leaving. This is a war of attrition – what Israelis have long understood as "creeping annexation", carried out by stealth to avoid a backlash from the international community.

Ultimately, Israel wants the Palestinians gone entirely, squeezed out into neighbouring Arab states, such as Egypt and Jordan. That next chapter is likely to begin in earnest if Trump ever gets the chance to unveil his "deal of the century".

A version of this article first appeared in the National, Abu Dhabi.


Sally Snyder , says: June 20, 2019 at 11:54 am GMT

Here is an article that clearly explains the pro-Israel bias in America's mainstream media:

https://viableopposition.blogspot.com/2019/04/the-pro-israel-skew-in-american.html

This study shows us that the pro-Israel narrative has become so firmly entrenched in the American mainstream media that it is almost impossible for news consumers to discern the truth about the situation in Israel and Palestine. This has greatly benefitted Washington which has made it abundantly clear that it sides with Israel in this fifty year-old conflict.

Bardon Kaldian , says: June 21, 2019 at 10:19 am GMT

If Netanyahu partially annexes the West Bank – Area C – it will be simply another stage in Israel's tireless efforts to immiserate the Palestinian population and bully them into leaving. This is a war of attrition – what Israelis have long understood as "creeping annexation", carried out by stealth to avoid a backlash from the international community.

Ultimately, Israel wants the Palestinians gone entirely, squeezed out into neighbouring Arab states, such as Egypt and Jordan. That next chapter is likely to begin in earnest if Trump ever gets the chance to unveil his "deal of the century".

This is probably true-and? I don't see Palestinians as a real people; they're just a bunch of Arabs & it is absolutely irrelevant whether they are in Syria, Egypt or Arabia. They themselves say they're not a "real" people:

https://youtu.be/FBPd28WYPFQ

On the other hand, real peoples like Uyghurs & Tibetans are swamped by the Chinese, which is a real tragedy & only, huh, Richard Gere complains.

So, what the big deal with "Palestinians"? Why would they have a "right to exist"on some shitty piece o land Jews seem to be obsessively addicted to in past 2 millennia?

And then, what with Amazonian Indians, Eskimos, Ostyaks, Okinawans, ..? What about expulsion of 13 million Germans in what are now parts of Poland, Czechia, Russia .?

Israelis should have expelled all of them in 1967. & there would be peace.

UncommonGround , says: June 21, 2019 at 10:20 am GMT
There is one point in the article that is not completely accurate. J. Cook writes: "Israeli officials have been preparing for this moment for more than half a century, since the West Bank, East Jerusalem and Gaza were seized back in 1967."

In fact, Ilan Pappe shows in his book "The biggest Prison on Earth" (2017) that plans to occupy the whole land were much older. The plans weren't made because Israel took Palestinian lands in 1967. Israel took lands in 1967 because of the plans to colonize it. Those plans were older.

So, Pappe says in a more general way in his book that " . since 1948 and even more since 1956, Israel's military and political elites was looking for the right historical moment to occupy the West Bank." (p. XIV). He also says more specifically: "The strategy was presented by the CoGS to the army on 1 May 1963 and was meant to prepare the army for controlling the West Bank as an occupied military area" (p. XIII).

All talk about "peace", about "coexistence", about a "two state solution" are (and were) made in bad faith. About Pappe's book: I don't want to reccomend it for a casual reading. It may be valuable historically because it deals with historical material from archives. But it's basically a book about the Israeli burocracy, about laws, rules which would make sure that Israel controls the conquested territory which it never thought of giving back. It's a dry book. He has other books that which are much more agreeable to read like his short book "Ten Myths About Israel".

[Jun 21, 2019] Helen Thomas an Appreciation by Paul Craig Roberts

Jun 16, 2010 | www.counterpunch.org

The propagandists for the Israel Lobby, who occupy the Wall Street Journal editorial page while pretending to be journalists, are determined to remove Helen Thomas from the annals of journalism. In case you have already forgotten, a few days ago the distinguished career of Helen Thomas, the 89-year-old doyen of the White House Press Corps, was ended by the Israel Lobby, which made an issue about her opinion that immigrant Jews should leave Palestine and go back to their home countries.

The White House Correspondents' Association fell in line with the demands of the Israel Lobby, and the cowardly president of the organization added the association's disapprobation to that of the neoconservative cabal.

Having removed Helen Thomas from the journalism scene, the Israel Lobby is now working with its agents on the Wall Street Journal editorial page to eliminate the Helen Thomas Award for Lifetime Achievement from the Society of Professional Journalists.

A nonentity in the world of journalism, James Taranto, apparently is associated with the Wall Street Journal editorial page, although Wikipedia reports that he was incapable of graduating from journalism school at California State University, Northridge. On a Wall Street Journal web site, Taranto writes: "We've been calling Thomas 'American journalism's crazy old aunt in the attic' for years," and he asks who would now accept the Helen Thomas award after Ms. Thomas revealed she really was crazy by criticizing Israel.

I would for one. Of course the Society of Professional Journalists would never give the award, assuming the distinguished award survives the assault of the Israel Lobby's assassins, to a critic of Israel. Helen excepted, American journalists are cowards. With the concentrated ownership of the corporate media today, no independently-minded journalist can have a career in print or TV media. You defend the Washington/Tel Aviv line, or you are out of work.

The absence of independently-minded journalists on the Wall Street Journal editorial page is an extraordinary change from my days as Associate Editor of that page. The editorial page editor, Robert Bartley was ambitious and forced himself to tolerate talented colleagues. Mere opinion was not our task. Often we scooped the reporters on the news side of the paper. Our editorials reported new developments and provided factual analysis.

I was hired as Jude Wanniski's replacement. Jude, Associate Editor of the Wall Street Journal, was fired, allegedly because the journal's brass caught him handing out election campaign literature on a train platform, but if you believe American journalism was ever that pure, I have a bridge in Brooklyn for sale.

Jude was fired, because the neoconservatives got rid of him by telling Bartley that Wanniski was over-shadowing him. That was too much for Bob's ego. Jude, of course, being a real journalist, was objective toward the Palestinians and thus had earned the enmity of the Israel Lobby.

Once Bob was rapidly declining with prostate cancer, neoconservatives engineered the takeover of the editorial page. Today the once proud Wall Street Journal editorial page is a leading apologist for Israeli/American war crimes and police states.

To return to the nonentity, James Taranto, who wants to throw Helen Thomas down the memory hole: Helen Thomas' opinion that Israelis should stop stealing the villages, homes, and lands of Palestinians, while confining Palestinians to the equivalent of the Warsaw Ghetto, is equated by Taranto to the advocacy of "ethnic cleansing" by Helen.

Of course, it is the Israelis who are doing the ethnic cleansing. Many Jews have documented Israel's ethnic cleansing of Palestinians, such as Uri Avnery, a former member of the Israeli terrorist organization, Irgun, Ilan Pappe, Israel's most distinguished historian and author of The Ethnic Cleansing of Palestine, and the Israeli peace group, ICHAD, who have been my house guests. The Israeli newspaper, Haaratz, is far more critical of Israeli policy than Helen Thomas, and so is MIT professor Noam Chomsky, the distinguished British journalist and film maker John Pilger, and the distinguished scholar, Norman Finkelstein, the son of Holocaust survivors.

But Taranto prefers an 89-year old adversary.

Israel is an unnatural state. It was created by terror that was accommodated by craven British and US "diplomacy." Israel exists for one reason only: the US government provides the money, weapons, and diplomatic protection. Any other government that murdered thousands of civilians in other countries, as Israel does routinely in Lebanon, Gaza, and the West Bank, would have its entire government and military on trial before the War Crimes Tribunal at the Hague. Israelis have no worst enemy than their own government.

Every time the rest of the world tries to hold the Israeli government accountable for its crimes, the US vetoes the UN resolution. America has become the enabler of the Zionist-hijacked Israeli government. And the Israeli government knows it. Israeli government leaders have publicly bragged for decades about their control over the US government. US Admiral Tom Moorer, Chief of Naval Operations and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff after whom the F-14 "Tomcat" jet fighter was named, declared publicly: "No American President can stand up to Israel." Apparently no American journalist can either.

I am a critic of Israel's heartless policy toward the Palestinians, but I do not want Israel destroyed. I want it moved or reformed. Bring the small number of Israelis to America before there is a nuclear war over the fact that they are where they should not be. To try to claim a land and dispossess its people on the basis of a spurious two thousand year year old deed is an audacious act of conquest and dispossession.

My proposal to relocate Israelis in the US is rhetorical, but why not insist that the Israelis, who are heavily dependent on US largess, reform? Why should Americans support an apartheid racist state that denies citizenship to the rightful inhabitants? What kind of morality, if any, does the Wall Street Journal editorial page represent when it defends Israelis who force Palestinians into ever-shrinking ghettos, deprived of water, food, medical care and schools? Why must Palestinians live in dread of Israeli bulldozers arriving to flatten their homes in order to create space for Zionist "settlers."

Allegedly, the US is a superpower, but in fact it is a puppet state of the Israeli government. Witness, for example (the examples are numerous), the fate of the Goldstone Report on Israeli war crimes committed in Israel's assault on Gaza during December 2008-January 2009. Goldstone is a Zionist Jew and a distinguished judge. He was given the task by the United Nations to investigate the Israeli attack on Gaza. Being an honest person, he provided evidence of Israeli war crimes.

What was the result? The bought-and-paid-for US Congress voted, on the instructions of their master, the Israel Lobby, to deep-six the Goldstone Report by a vote of 344 to 36.

Amazing, isn't it, there were only 36 US Representatives who were not owned by the Israel Lobby.

Of course, James Taranto serves the Israel Lobby. The Wall Street Journal editorial page, not even a shadow of its former self, when it speaks, speaks for Israel and for the Bush/Cheney militarist police state.

The Wall Street Journal editorial page has fallen into the low ranks of Brownshirt propaganda. The fact that management tolerates the continuation of totally nonobjective journalism shows why print newspapers are failing everywhere.

The hubris of Taranto, a mere propagandist who will never come close to the league in which Helen Thomas resides, causes him to think that he is fit to pass judgment on a real journalist. Taranto epitomizes the hubris of the neoconservatives. Not a single one of them has the smallest accomplishment. Yet, blinded with arrogance, they remain in ignorant bliss of their status as prostitutes.

PAUL CRAIG ROBERTS was an editor of the Wall Street Journal and an Assistant Secretary of the U.S. Treasury. His latest book, HOW THE ECONOMY WAS LOST , has just been published by CounterPunch/AK Press. He can be reached at: PaulCraigRoberts@yahoo.com

[Jun 21, 2019] The Two-State Solution Is Dead

Jun 21, 2019 | www.nakedcapitalism.com

"A State Department map shows Palestinian population centers in the West Bank. Obama was surprised to see how 'systematic' the Israelis had been at cutting them off from one another." ( source , click to enlarge)

The outcome of this long process of territorial integration , barring any implementation of an alternative to the "two-state solution," will be as Mike Gravel says , "horrendous war, the Jordan foaming with blood." The monomaniacal drive by Israel's leaders to recover the western part of their Iron Age kingdom has now made peace impossible, sans intervention.

If the two-state idea is dead, what alternatives are left? Just one. Below I list the main points of presidential candidate Mike Gravel's proposal, offered as the only non-military, non-ethnic-cleansing way forward. Is this solution "practical"? No, it's not, in the sense that the current leaders of the U.S., Israel and Palestine will not accept it.

But yes, it is practical, in the sense that a bloodbath in the region -- and it will come to that -- a bloodbath that will wash over all of the Middle East, is the only other alternative. If a war of this magnitude is itself "impractical" in the extreme, Gravel's solution is imminently practical. I, like Gravel, see this as the only way out.

Here are Gravel's main points, as offered in a recent Mondoweiss piece :

Bottom Line

If peace in the Palestinian region is the goal, and if you're clear-headed about what it will take to get there, these are the most practical steps, and in fact the only ones, no matter how objectionable they will be to everyone involved in the conflict.

First, the goal must recognized realities on the ground. If a two-state solution is impossible, the only alternatives are an increasingly cleansed Greater Israel, with intifada after growing intifada revenging within its borders, or a peaceful secular state. One cannot have a religion-dominated Israel as the only state in the region and still have peace. One may as well want a bird that can fly to the moon.

Next, if the second alternative, a peaceful secular state, is to be achieved with U.S. leadership, the U.S. political process much be cleared of the protected intervention of the Israel lobby. If not, its paid politicians will win almost every battle, neutering every attempt at make peace, until peace itself is a dream of the past and war is the fact on the ground, the "foaming tide of blood" Gravel seeks to avoid.

Neither of the alternatives, a one-state region dominated by religion and cleansing, or a one-state region of diversity and tolerance, will be achieved without great pain. But I were the one choosing between them, a road that leads to a foaming tide of blood would be last on the list, if it even made the list at all.


James , June 21, 2019 at 6:19 am

Great post and Gravel's suggestions make eminent sense (as usual), but we all know absolutely none of this will actually happen. The US and UK have created and nurtured a great horned beast in Israel and now we all get to live with the consequences. A blood bath it will most certainly be, and from what we're hearing in the news lately, it will most likely be sooner rather than later.

Alex , June 21, 2019 at 6:56 am

The one-state solution is not bad in itself (and neither is the two-state solution), the devil is in the details. The issue with the the proposed solution is that no one can guarantee that even if the purported single state starts as democratic and secular it will stay this way. In fact all the neighbouring Arab Muslim-majority states are neither democratic nor secular. And Yazidis and Syrian and Iraqi Christians are good examples what happens with minorities in such states, so bloodbath is likelier to follow from the implementation this proposal than from the status quo, as bad as it is.

Also that's a fine example of usual double standards. In the same region there is North Cyprus whose Greek population was expelled less than 50 ago and still cannot return, with mainland Turkish setters moving in. A bit further to the north, and about 10 years ago ethnic Georgians were cleansed from South Ossetia. But you'd be hard pressed to find a single line about these places and many others like them.

AEL , June 21, 2019 at 7:13 am

Lebanon is a regional example where the government is secular and democratic (for a sufficiently loose definition of both secular and democratic).

Darius , June 21, 2019 at 10:03 am

The US doesn't provide South Ossetia with billions of dollars of arms and other assistance every year. US leaders don't make a bipartisan show of falling all over themselves to pledge fealty to South Ossetia. They don't hold South Ossetia above reproach and hail its vicious and corrupt leader as the new Moses or Elijah.

Joe Well , June 21, 2019 at 10:09 am

Your comment about Yazidis, Christians and other minorities in US-UK-occupied countries only serves to show that US-UK occupations are evil and destroy societies. Those minorities had lived for millennia in those countries until the English-speaking barbarians arrived.

The one country in the Middle East today with strong and stable minority communities is Iran, precisely because it has never been invaded by the US and the UK.

Ask Native Americans what they think about what happens to ethnic minorities in US-dominated regions.

Darius , June 21, 2019 at 7:14 am

Thank you for using the words ethnic cleansing, which is well under way. What else can you call taking Palestinian land and building Israeli settlements on it? In some cases, the only work Palestinians can get is building the settlements that are displacing them. A grotesque atrocity. This is what has unquestioned bipartisan support among the political class in the US. A country led by Netanyahu, one of the absolute worst people on the world stage today, should not be the one nation that is above reproach. In fact, quite the reverse. He has made their bed. The only way forward now is one non-ethnic democratic state.

sharonsj , June 21, 2019 at 10:10 am

People who talk about Palestinian ethnic cleansing do not know what they are talking about. Since 1948 Israelis haven't systematically gotten rid of Palestinians; in fact the Palestinian population in the area has only grown larger. However, since 1948 every Middle Eastern country has systematically ethnically cleansed itself of Jews. For example, there were about 60,000 Jews in Egypt until Nasser forced them out after taking their property. Now there are estimated to be 15 people left. In Iraq, there were 150,000 in Bagdad until Saddam Hussein forced them out and confiscated their property. Now there are none. The only country that has any sizeable Jewish population is Iran; there are about 9000 Jews there, but there used to be 90,000.

You also don't talk about the Palestinian aim, which is the destruction of Israel and the expulsion of almost all Jews. I think the Hamas charter allows only those Jews to remain whose ancestors lived in the area before 1917; no such conditions exist for Palestinians. Personally I'm all for Israel taking over the West Bank. P.S. The town of Hebron in the West Bank is the oldest Jewish community in the world, dating back to Biblical times. Its Jewish population has always been small, around 700 people, but apparently not small enough for the Arabs. They twice massacred the Jews of Hebron in the 1920s, long before Israel existed. In the 1948 war, Jordan occupied the West Bank and East Jerusalem and expelled all the Jews; nobody objected very much. If Muslims take control of the area, history shows they absolutely will turn it into an ethnic non-democratic state.

Plenue , June 21, 2019 at 10:51 am

Ah, there's the hasbara!

Olga , June 21, 2019 at 11:31 am

I was going to be more polite the comment reveals someone who lives in some dreamland, far, far away from reality.

divadab , June 21, 2019 at 9:42 am

North Americans owe their privileged position to a massive taking from and replacement of the native population. What moral standing do we have to criticise Israel, which is doing exactly the same thing?

It's terrible and sad but tribal war is the story of humanity.

I do object to being lied to 24-7 but the reality is that most people do not want to confront the brutal truth of it.

Joe Well , June 21, 2019 at 10:13 am

Sorry, my head exploded. It is beyond absurd to suggest the US government or society is standing aside, shaking its finger.

The US government is helping to pay the bill and provide the weapons and more importantly, the international diplomatic and military cover to Israel to commit these crimes. And many Americans have donated to prop up the most reactionary elements of Israeli politics.

divadab , June 21, 2019 at 11:33 am

Well, yes. I quite agree. I suggested nothing to the contrary.

ambrit , June 21, 2019 at 10:20 am

I hate to agree with you but I must. The present Israeli State has demonstrated the 'effectiveness' of a campaign of controlled violence. The above suggestion, though sane and rational is not feasible there now. The well has been poisoned. The only effective counter measure to Israeli State violence is Palestinian State violence. To get to that point, someone has to supply the 'sinews of war' to the Palestinians. One regional power is doing so, Iran. Hence, the Israeli fixation on dominating Iran. Iran is the only state level actor doing something 'effective' on behalf of the Palestinians.
I suggest that this is not going to 'end up' in a bloodbath, but that the bloodbath has already started.

Norm , June 21, 2019 at 10:25 am

There is not a nation in the world that does not have ethnic cleansing blood on its hands. Some are undoubtedly more blood stained than others, but mostly it's a question of how recent and well publicized any set of horrors happens to be that determines which of them are brought to our attention.

That being said, humanity should have choices better than tolerating ethnic cleansing just because all of our hands are dirty. Even Israel whose crimes are out there for everyone with any shred of objectivity to see could still choose to make amends by devoting itself to making life better for all the people living under its yoke.

divadab , June 21, 2019 at 11:38 am

It seems to me that Israel considers the Palestinians to be inferiors to be eliminated, blood enemies. As do the Turks consider the Armenians and Pontic Greeks (already eliminated), and the Kurds (in process of elimination). As do the Chinese consider the Uighers and the Tibetans.

Sorry but your suggestion that any of the eliminators do something nice for their targets is a fantasy.

Joe Well , June 21, 2019 at 10:06 am

I congratulate you, Yves, for your courage in republishing this, Thomas for writing it, and Mike Gravel for the original proposal.

There are some scary defenders of the status quo, who have even stooped to t rying to ruin the lives of college students , and it takes courage to speak the truth.

Thuto , June 21, 2019 at 10:35 am

After slaying its own apartheid dragon, my country of SA is bucking the international trend and has downgraded its Israeli diplomatic mission to that of a liaison representative office only (with the ambassador having officially been recalled), which is the first step towards a full boycott. We fully expect the Trump threat-generator machine to kick into high gear in response to this, but our painful history has taught us that the arduous path towards defeating a monster like apartheid is paved with courageous, seemingly inconsequential actions like this. That this has caused consternation amongst the local Jewish lobby is par for the course, but the government is resolute and determined forge ahead with this. What has become extremely concerning is the regularity with which every criticism of Israel, no matter how legitimate, is labelled antisemitic, and the moral outrage accompanying some of the atrocities associated with the state is thusly quelled using political correctness and the silencing of dissent.

The "Israel has the right to defend itself" rhetorical smokescreen (notwithstanding its legitimate right to do so apart from the invoking of this "right" as cover for committing state sanctioned atrocities) and the brandishing of antisemitism sound eerily similar to how the apartheid government used "the right to defend the republic against treasonous terrorists" to keep the oppressed black masses huddled and docile, until the system collapsed under the weight of internal and external pressure. With big brother USA shielding Israel, the Israel-Palestinian situation is orders of magnitude above SA in intractability.

[Jun 20, 2019] The Trump regime wants another pointless war by Ryan Cooper

Highly recommended!
A very good analysis. Trump essentially morphed into Hillary or worse. Essentially the same type of warmonger and compulsive liar.
Notable quotes:
"... The American people appear largely uninterested in this idea. But unless some real mass pressure is mounted against it, there is a good chance Trump will launch the U.S. into another pointless, disastrous war. ..."
"... At time of writing, the Washington Post has counted 10,796 false or misleading claims from Trump himself since taking office. Abject up-is-down lying is basically the sine qua non of modern conservative politics. ..."
"... Pompeo insists " there is no doubt " that Iran carried out the attacks -- the exact same words that Vice President Dick Cheney said in 2002 about Saddam Hussein's possession of weapons of mass destruction and his intention to use them on the United States, neither of which were true. (This is no doubt why several U.S. allies reacted skeptically to Trump's claims.) ..."
"... What's more, the downside risk here is vastly larger than tax policy. A great big handout to the rich might be socially costly in many ways, but it won't cause tens of thousands of violent deaths in a matter of days. War with Iran could easily do that -- or worse . ..."
"... Who else might have done the attacks? Saudi Arabia springs to mind. ..."
"... At a minimum, anybody with half a brain would want to be extremely certain about what actually happened before taking any rash actions. It's clear that Bolton and company, by contrast, just want a pretext to ratchet up pressure on Iran even further. ..."
"... On the other hand, sinking Iran's navy, as Stephens suggests in his column, would likely be a lot more dangerous than he thinks. Americans have long been fed a lot of hysterical nationalist propaganda from neocons like him about the invincibility of the U.S. military, and the ease with which any possible threat could be defeated. But while U.S. forces are indeed powerful, there is a very real risk that Iran's navy -- which is full of fast-attack boats, mini-subs, and disguised civilian vessels specifically designed to take out large ships with swarm attacks -- could inflict significant damage. Just a few lucky hits could kill thousands of sailors and cause tens of billions of dollars in damage. This is before you even get to the primary lesson of the Iraq War which is that an initial military victory is completely useless and probably counterproductive without a plan for what comes next. ..."
"... Finally, attacking Iran would be illegal. It would violate U.S. treaties , and thus the Constitution. The only justification is the claim that the 2001 authorization to attack Al Qaeda covers an attack on Iran . This is utterly preposterous -- akin to arguing it covers attacking New Zealand to roll back their gun control efforts -- but may explain Pompeo's equally preposterous attempt to blame Iran for a Taliban attack in Afghanistan. ..."
"... Pompeo and Bolton are clearly hell-bent on war. But Trump himself seems somewhat hesitant , sensing (probably accurately) that starting another war of aggression would tank his popularity even further. It's high time for everyone from ordinary citizens up to Nancy Pelosi to demand this rush to war be stopped. ..."
Jun 18, 2019 | theweek.com

The Trump regime is attempting to gin up a war with Iran. First Trump reneged on Obama's nuclear deal with the country for no reason, then he slapped them with more economic sanctions for no reason, and then, pushed by National Security Adviser John Bolton and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, he moved massive military forces onto Iran's doorstep to heighten tensions further. Now, after a series of attacks on oil tankers in the Gulf of Oman -- none of which were American -- that the administration blames on Iran, Pompeo says the U.S. is "considering a full range of options," including war. (Iran has categorically denied any involvement.)

The American people appear largely uninterested in this idea. But unless some real mass pressure is mounted against it, there is a good chance Trump will launch the U.S. into another pointless, disastrous war.

The New York Times ' Bret Stephens, for all his #NeverTrump pretensions, provides a good window into the absolute witlessness of the pro-war argument . He takes largely at face value the Trump administration's accusations against Iran -- "Trump might be a liar, but the U.S. military isn't," he writes -- and blithely suggests Trump should announce an ultimatum demanding further attacks cease, then sink Iran's navy if they don't comply.

Let me take these in turn. For one thing, any statement of any kind coming out of a Republican's mouth should be viewed with extreme suspicion. Two years ago, the party passed a gigantic tax cut for the rich which they swore up and down would " pay for itself " with increased growth. To precisely no one's surprise, this did not happen . Senator Josh Hawley (R-Mo.) was just one flagrant example of many who got elected in 2016 while lying through their teeth about their party's efforts to destroy ObamaCare and its protections for preexisting conditions.

At time of writing, the Washington Post has counted 10,796 false or misleading claims from Trump himself since taking office. Abject up-is-down lying is basically the sine qua non of modern conservative politics.

Republican accusations of foreign aggression should be subjected to an even higher burden of proof. The Trump regime has provided no evidence of Iranian culpability aside from a video of a ship the Pentagon says is Iranians removing something they say is a mine from an oil tanker -- but a Japanese ship owner reported at least one attack came from a " flying object ," not a mine. Pompeo insists " there is no doubt " that Iran carried out the attacks -- the exact same words that Vice President Dick Cheney said in 2002 about Saddam Hussein's possession of weapons of mass destruction and his intention to use them on the United States, neither of which were true. (This is no doubt why several U.S. allies reacted skeptically to Trump's claims.)

What's more, the downside risk here is vastly larger than tax policy. A great big handout to the rich might be socially costly in many ways, but it won't cause tens of thousands of violent deaths in a matter of days. War with Iran could easily do that -- or worse .

And though this may be a shock to Troop Respecters like Bret Stephens, the military's record of scrupulous honesty is not exactly spotless. It has lied continually about the state of the Afghanistan occupation, just as it did in Vietnam . It lied about the effects of Agent Orange on U.S. troops and Vietnamese civilians. It lied about Pat Tillman being killed by friendly fire. Military recruiters even sometimes lie about enlistment benefits to meet their quotas.

Who else might have done the attacks? Saudi Arabia springs to mind. False flag attacks on its own oil tankers sound outlandish, but we're talking about a ruthless dictatorship run by a guy who had a Washington Post columnist murdered and chopped into pieces because he didn't like his takes. And the Saudis have already been conducting a years-long war in Yemen with catastrophic humanitarian outcomes in order to stop an Iran-allied group from coming to power. It's by no means certain, but hardly outside the realm of possibility.

At a minimum, anybody with half a brain would want to be extremely certain about what actually happened before taking any rash actions. It's clear that Bolton and company, by contrast, just want a pretext to ratchet up pressure on Iran even further.

But let's grant for the sake of argument that some Iranian forces actually did carry out some or all of these attacks. That raises the immediate question of why. One very plausible reason is that all of Trump's provocations have strengthened the hand of Iran's conservative hard-liners, who are basically the mirror image of Pompeo and Bolton. "It is sort of a toxic interaction between hard-liners on both sides because for domestic political reasons they each want greater tension," as Jeremy Shapiro of the European Council on Foreign Relations told the New York Times . This faction might have concluded that the U.S. is run by deranged fanatics, and the best way to protect Iran is to demonstrate they could choke off oil shipping from the Persian Gulf if the U.S. attacks.

This in turn raises the question of the appropriate response if Iran is actually at fault here. It would be one thing if these attacks came out of a clear blue sky. But America is very obviously the aggressor here. Iran was following its side of the nuclear deal to the letter before Trump reneged, and continued to do so as of February . So far the European Union (which is still party to the deal) has been unwilling to sidestep U.S. sanctions, prompting Iran to threaten to restart uranium enrichment . So Iran is a medium-sized country with a faltering economy, hemmed in on all sides by U.S. aggression. Backing off the threats and chest-thumping might easily strengthen the hand of Iranian moderates, and cause them to respond in kind.

On the other hand, sinking Iran's navy, as Stephens suggests in his column, would likely be a lot more dangerous than he thinks. Americans have long been fed a lot of hysterical nationalist propaganda from neocons like him about the invincibility of the U.S. military, and the ease with which any possible threat could be defeated. But while U.S. forces are indeed powerful, there is a very real risk that Iran's navy -- which is full of fast-attack boats, mini-subs, and disguised civilian vessels specifically designed to take out large ships with swarm attacks -- could inflict significant damage. Just a few lucky hits could kill thousands of sailors and cause tens of billions of dollars in damage. This is before you even get to the primary lesson of the Iraq War which is that an initial military victory is completely useless and probably counterproductive without a plan for what comes next.

Taken together, these factors strongly militate towards de-escalation and diplomacy even if Iran did carry out these attacks, which again, is not at all proven. The current standoff is almost entirely our fault, and Iranian forces are far from defenseless. America has a lot better things to do than indulge the deluded jingoist fantasies of a handful of armchair generals who want lots of other people to die in battle.

Finally, attacking Iran would be illegal. It would violate U.S. treaties , and thus the Constitution. The only justification is the claim that the 2001 authorization to attack Al Qaeda covers an attack on Iran . This is utterly preposterous -- akin to arguing it covers attacking New Zealand to roll back their gun control efforts -- but may explain Pompeo's equally preposterous attempt to blame Iran for a Taliban attack in Afghanistan.

Pompeo and Bolton are clearly hell-bent on war. But Trump himself seems somewhat hesitant , sensing (probably accurately) that starting another war of aggression would tank his popularity even further. It's high time for everyone from ordinary citizens up to Nancy Pelosi to demand this rush to war be stopped.

[Jun 19, 2019] Trump has drained the swamp right into his administration

Notable quotes:
"... I suppose we deserve this but it doesn't do well for my blood pressure. ..."
Jun 19, 2019 | www.moonofalabama.org

ken , Jun 19, 2019 3:57:37 PM | 23

..Trump HAS drained the swamp,,, right into his administration.

Look at what we in the US have to look forward to,,, tyrants on the left,,, tyrants on the right. I suppose we deserve this but it doesn't do well for my blood pressure.

[Jun 19, 2019] Trump MIGA bellicosity: the president said a fight would mean "the official end of Iran"

Neocon donors ask Trump for favors and he can't refuse... Trump foreign policy is a direct continuation of Bush II and Obama foreign policy and is dominated by neocons, who rule the State Department. Pomeo is a rabid neocon, to the right of Condoleezza Rice, Hillary and John Kerry. Actually anti-Iranian and pro-Israeli bias was clearly visible even during 2016 campaign, but few voters paid any attention. Now they should.
It is clear that Trump is the most pro-Israel President after Johnson.
Notable quotes:
"... In contrast, in the Middle East the president has been extraordinarily bellicose. In April, the Administration revoked waivers that allowed certain countries to buy oil from Iran without violating U.S. sanctions [ U.S. Won't Renew Sanction Exemptions For Countries Buying Iran's Oil , by Bill Chappell, NPR, April 22, 2019]. In early May, the president imposed new sanctions on Iranian metals, a direct threat to the regime's economic viability. ..."
"... The "maximum pressure campaign," as it has been called, puts Iran in the position of either accepting a humiliating surrender or striking out where it can [ Maximum pressure on Iran Means Maximum Risk of War , by Ilan Goldenberg, Foreign Policy, June 14, 2019]. ..."
"... Why Iran would do this is questionable, unless it's just a move of desperation. ..."
"... But did Iran actually do it? Washington has a credibility gap with the rest of the world and its own people thanks to the disaster of the Iraq War . There were, it turned out, no "Weapons of Mass Destruction." So now many Americans openly question whether Iran attacked these tankers. This includes some MSM reporters who trusted the "intelligence community" when it was attacking Trump but now want an "international investigation of the incident". [ Ben Rhodes, CNN, And Others Purposefully Fuel Pro-Iranian "False Flag Conspiracy Theories After Tanker Attacks , RedState, June 14, 2019] ..."
Jun 19, 2019 | www.unz.com

The most optimistic explanation: Trump intends to use immigration as an election issue in 2020. Yet his fecklessness in office will be as unappealing to many voters as the Democrats' extremism. [ Trump Is Vulnerable to Biden on Immigration , by Michael Brendan Dougherty, National Review, June 11, 2019] After all, Trump began his campaign vowing to solve the immigration problem almost exactly four years ago -- but essentially nothing has been done.

Instead, the president has been reduced to asking Mexico to solve our problem for us. He supposedly cut a deal with the Mexican government after threatening tariffs , but even that is in dispute. [ Mexico denies Trump's claim of secret concessions in deal , by Jill Colvin, Colleen Long, and Maria Verza, Associated Press, June 10, 2019] The president left powerful negotiating tools on the side, including, most importantly, a remittance tax . As in his dealings with Congress, the president insists on negotiating from weakness in his dealings with Mexico.

In contrast, in the Middle East the president has been extraordinarily bellicose. In April, the Administration revoked waivers that allowed certain countries to buy oil from Iran without violating U.S. sanctions [ U.S. Won't Renew Sanction Exemptions For Countries Buying Iran's Oil , by Bill Chappell, NPR, April 22, 2019]. In early May, the president imposed new sanctions on Iranian metals, a direct threat to the regime's economic viability. [ Trump sanctions Iranian metals, Tehran's largest non-petroleum-related sources of export revenue , by Amanda Macias, CNBC, May 8, 2019]

Later that month, the president said a fight would mean "the official end of Iran" [ Trump threatens Iran With 'Official End' by Kenneth Walsh, US News and World Report, May 20, 2019].

The "maximum pressure campaign," as it has been called, puts Iran in the position of either accepting a humiliating surrender or striking out where it can [ Maximum pressure on Iran Means Maximum Risk of War , by Ilan Goldenberg, Foreign Policy, June 14, 2019].

This has culminated in Iran's alleged attack on two tankers traveling in the Strait of Hormuz. [ Pompeo Says 'There's No Doubt' Iran Attacked 2 Tankers , by Daniella Cheslow, NPR, June 16, 2019] Congressman Adam Schiff, one of the president's most fervent opponents, agrees Iran is to blame [ Schiff agrees with Trump: 'No question' Iran attacked oil tankers , by Ronn Blitzer, Fox News, June 16, 2019], Senator Tom Cotton (who has a relatively strong immigration policy ) has gone so far as to call for direct military action. [ Senator Tom Cotton Calls For 'Retaliatory Military Strike,' Against Iran After Tanker Attacks, by Benjamin Fearnow, Newsweek, June 16, 2019]

Why Iran would do this is questionable, unless it's just a move of desperation.

But did Iran actually do it? Washington has a credibility gap with the rest of the world and its own people thanks to the disaster of the Iraq War . There were, it turned out, no "Weapons of Mass Destruction." So now many Americans openly question whether Iran attacked these tankers. This includes some MSM reporters who trusted the "intelligence community" when it was attacking Trump but now want an "international investigation of the incident". [ Ben Rhodes, CNN, And Others Purposefully Fuel Pro-Iranian "False Flag Conspiracy Theories After Tanker Attacks , RedState, June 14, 2019]

This is not the same country that re-elected George W. Bush in 2004. The trust in institutions is gone; America is war-weary.

And regardless of who did it, who cares? What American interest is at stake? The Iraq War made the region more unstable ; an Iran War would unleash sectarian warfare all over again. [ Attacking Iran Would Unleash Chaos on the Middle East , by Robert Gaines and Scott Horton, National Interest, June 15, 2019]

We can't even say it's "about the oil" -- the United States is now the world's biggest oil producer and may soon be the world's top exporter [ US will soon threaten to topple Saudi Arabia as the world's top oil exporter: IEA by Tom DiChristopher, CNBC, March 11, 2019]. Who cares about Iran's oil?

There is also a deeper fundamental question. Our country is crumbling. The border is non-existent; entire communities are being overrun. There's something perverse about even entertaining a dangerous and costly military intervention halfway around the world. It's akin to a Roman emperor declaring he will conquer India while barbarians are crossing the Rhine.

President Trump ran on a policy of non-intervention and promised it even after being elected. [ Trump lays out non-interventionist U.S. military policy , by Steve Holland, Reuters, December 6, 2016] He repeatedly pushed back against efforts to get more deeply involved in Syria. He must now resist efforts to get involved in Iran, especially from those who may hint it will win him re-election.

[Jun 18, 2019] Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) confirmed to Jewish Insider a July trip to Israel to work out details for a U.S.-Israel defense treaty to counter the Iranian threat

Essentially Sen. Graham is treating Israel as yet another US state. If we make this assumption, then the USA policy toward Israel at least looks more logical.
Jun 18, 2019 | www.unz.com

renfro , says: June 18, 2019 at 3:00 am GMT

"The two generals were referring to the fact that the U.S. already has airmen stationed permanently at Israel's Mashabim Air Base in spite of the fact that the two countries have no defense agreement of any kind. The Americans, though few in number, would serve as a trip wire to guarantee that Washington would become involved in any war that Israel chooses to start"

Israel will soon get their long sought US-Israel Defense Treaty if Lindsey Graham can pull it off and congress I am sure will be all for it. There aren't words to describe what such a treaty would do to the US -- -it's signing up any and all wars Israel wants to create ..it will be the end of the US.

HEARD YESTERDAY -- Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) confirmed to Jewish Insider a July trip to Israel to work out details for a U.S.-Israel defense treaty to counter the Iranian threat. He later elaborated on his plans during a speech at the Endowment for Middle East Truth in Washington D.C. on Wednesday night.
"So, here's the next thing, here's our marching orders. I'm going to Israel in July. We're going to sit down and we're going to talk about what a security agreement would look like," he said. "But I think it's important to send a signal in the 21st century. If you're intending to destroy Israel, you have to go through us. And it will not turn out well for you."

[Jun 18, 2019] Israeli efforts to influence American institutions

Jun 18, 2019 | www.zerohedge.com

JSBach1 , 52 minutes ago link

A recent article in the Jerusalem Post demonstrates another aspect of how extensive Israeli efforts to infiltrate and corrupt American institutions to their benefit actually are . The article describes how "Close to 40 American cadets and officers wrapped up a two-week long trip to Poland and Israel on Monday, meeting with high-ranking military officers to learn about the Jewish State and the reality of its security situation. The trip, organized by Our Soldiers Speak (OSS), left a deep impression on the visiting service members who hail from the West Point Military Academy, the Air Force Academy, and the Virginia Military Institute, with some even voicing their readiness to fight and if necessary die alongside IDF troops ."

It was the third such visit to Israel by a group of representative military cadets. The travelers were treated to guilt first with stops at concentration camps in Poland . They then were subjected to the Israeli point of view through "high-level briefings from current and former policymakers and commentators from across the spectrum in the areas of security, strategy, international relations, law, politics, and more."

Make no mistake, the entire exercise was a scarcely concealed bid to set up what one might regard as the recruitment of future Israeli spies within the U.S. military. Such spies, who will plausibly be able to promote policies favorable to Israel, are referred to as "agents of influence." Benjamin Anthony, the Director of OSS, admitted as much , saying that

"This unparalleled experience enables American cadets to learn about hot-button issues and matters of utmost strategic importance in the Middle East firsthand. By forging bonds between the cadets and Israeli military officers, we are laying the groundwork for future understanding and productive interactions. We wanted to impact people who will be in leaderships positions a short time after the trip to Israel. All of them will be in command positions two or three years after this trip and they will be better informed about America's greatest ally in the Middle East and the world."

https://www.unz.com/pgiraldi/recruiting-american-spies-for-israel/

[Jun 16, 2019] Kushner as a Colonial Administrator by Ramzy Baroud

Jun 11, 2019 | dissidentvoice.org

Let's Talk About the "Israeli Model"

In a TV interview on June 2, on the news docuseries "Axios" on the HBO channel, Jared Kushner opened up regarding many issues, in which his 'Deal of the Century' was a prime focus.

The major revelation made by Kushner, President Donald Trump's adviser and son-in-law, was least surprising. Kushner believes that Palestinians are not capable of governing themselves.

Not surprising, because Kushner thinks he is capable of arranging the future of the Palestinian people without the inclusion of the Palestinian leadership. He has been pushing his so-called 'Deal of the Century' relentlessly, while including in his various meets and conferences countries such as Poland, Brazil and Croatia, but not Palestine.

Indeed, this is what transpired at the Warsaw conference on 'peace and security' in the Middle East. The same charade, also led by Kushner, is expected to be rebooted in Bahrain on June 25.

Much has been said about the subtle racism in Kushner's words, reeking with the stench of old colonial discourses where the natives were seen as lesser, incapable of rational thinking beings who needed the civilized 'whites' of the western hemisphere to help them cope with their backwardness and inherent incompetence.

Kushner, whose credentials are merely based on his familial connections to Trump and family friendship with Israeli Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, is now poised to be the colonial administrator of old, making and enforcing the law while the hapless natives have no other option but to either accommodate or receive their due punishment.

This is not an exaggeration. In fact, according to leaked information concerning Kushner's 'Deal of the Century,' and published in the Israeli daily newspaper, Israel Hayom , if Palestinian groups refuse to accept the US-Israeli diktats, "the US will cancel all financial support to the Palestinians and ensure that no country transfers funds to them."

In the HBO interview, Kushner offered the Palestinians a lifeline. They could be considered capable of governing themselves should they manage to achieve the following: "a fair judicial system freedom of the press, freedom of expression, tolerance for all religions."

The fact that Palestine is an occupied country, subject in every possible way to Israel's military law, and that Israel has never been held accountable for its 52-year occupation seems to be of no relevance whatsoever, as far as Kushner is concerned.

On the contrary, the subtext in all of what Kushner has said in the interview is that Israel is the antithesis to the unquestionable Palestinian failure. Unlike Palestine, Israel needs to do little to demonstrate its ability to be a worthy peace partner.

While the term 'US bias towards Israel' is as old as the state of Israel itself, what is hardly discussed are the specifics of that bias, the decidedly condescending, patronizing and, often, racist view that US political classes have of Palestinians – and all Arabs and Muslims, for that matter; and the utter infatuation with Israel, which is often cited as a model for democracy, judicial transparency and successful 'anti-terror' tactics.

According to Kushner a 'fair judicial system' is a conditio sine qua non to determine a country's ability to govern itself. But is the Israeli judicial system "fair" and "democratic"?

Israel does not have a single judicial system, but two. This duality has, in fact, defined Israeli courts from the very inception of Israel in 1948. This de facto apartheid system openly differentiates between Jews and Arabs, a fact that is true in both civil and criminal law.

"Criminal law is applied separately and unequally in the West Bank, based on nationality alone (Israeli versus Palestinian), inventively weaving its way around the contours of international law in order to preserve and develop its '(illegal Jewish) settlement enterprise'," Israeli scholar, Emily Omer-Man, explained in her essay 'Separate and Unequal'.

In practice, Palestinians and Israelis who commit the exact same crime will be judged according to two different systems, with two different procedures: "The settler will be processed according to the Israeli Penal Code (while) the Palestinian will be processed according to military order."

This unfairness is constituent of a massively unjust judicial apparatus that has defined the Israeli legal system from the onset. Take the measure of administrative detention as an example. Palestinians can be held without trial and without any stated legal justification. Tens of thousands of Palestinians have been subjected to this undemocratic 'law' and hundreds of them are currently held in Israeli jails.

It is ironic that Kushner raised the issue of freedom of the press, in particular, as Israel is being derided for its dismal record in that regard. Israel has reportedly committed 811 violations against Palestinian journalists since the start of the 'March of Return' in Gaza in March 2018. Two journalists – Yaser Murtaja and Ahmed Abu Hussein – were killed and 155 were wounded by Israeli snipers.

Like the imbalanced Israeli judicial system, targeting the press is also a part of a protracted pattern. According to a press release issued by the Palestinian Journalists Union last May, Israel has killed 102 Palestinian journalists since 1972.

The fact that Palestinian intellectuals, poets and activists have been imprisoned for Facebook and other social media posts should tell us volumes about the limits of Israel's freedom of press and expression.

It is also worth mentioning that in June 2018, the Israeli Knesset voted for a bill that prohibits the filming of Israeli soldiers as a way to mask their crimes and shelter them from any future legal accountability.

As for freedom of religion, despite its many shortcomings, the Palestinian Authority hardly discriminates against religious minorities. The same cannot be said about Israel.

Although discrimination against non-Jews in Israel has been the raison d'être of the very idea of Israel, the Nation-State Law of July 2018 further cemented the superiority of the Jews and inferior status of everyone else.

According to the new Basic Law, Israel is "the national home of the Jewish people" only and "the right to exercise national self-determination is unique to the Jewish people."

Palestinians do not need to be lectured on how to meet Israeli and American expectations, nor should they ever aspire to imitate the undemocratic Israeli model. What they urgently need, instead, is international solidarity to help them win the fight against Israeli occupation, racism and apartheid.

Dr. Ramzy Baroud is an author and a journalist. He is athor of The Second Palestinian Intifada: A Chronicle of a People's Struggle and his latest My Father Was a Freedom Fighter: Gaza's Untold Story . He can be reached at ramzybaroud@hotmail.com . Read other articles by Ramzy , or visit Ramzy's website .

This article was posted on Tuesday, June 11th, 2019 at 11:25pm and is filed under Apartheid , Benjamin Netanyahu , Colonialism , Discrimination , Donald Trump , Ethnic Cleansing , Freedom of Expression/Speech , Hypocrisy , International Law , Israel/Palestine , Jared Kushner , Justice , Land Theft , Media Censorship , Occupation , Political Prisoners , Racism , Resistance , Right of Return , Settler Colonization , Solidarity , United States , US Hypocrisy , US Lies , West Bank , Zionism .

[Jun 15, 2019] Game On Pompeo Blames Iran, Calls Attacks 'Threat to International Peace'

Notable quotes:
"... A few years ago, Sheldon Adelson wanted the US to drop a nuke on Iran. Video below. What Sheldon wants, Trump the errand-boy delivers. The fact that the US public is overwhelmingly against a war with Iran is completely irrelevant. ..."
"... Probably a 50/50 chance it was an American-Saudi-Israel false flag. ..."
"... Just like how the Reichstag Fire took place and by pure happenstance, the Nazis had the Enabling Act all ready to go. ..."
"... If I was a betting man I'd put my money on the "actual" culprits being Mossad, CIA, MI6 or any combination of the three. The Neocons and Zionists in Washington are traitors to our Constitutional Republic! Don't let them drag us into another foreign war for Israel! ..."
"... Remember the USS Liberty! Never Forget! ..."
"... This updated post from "Moon of Alabama" is definitely worth reading: "Today's Attacks On Ships In The Gulf Of Oman Are Not In Iran's Interest – Or Are They? (Updated)": https://www.moonofalabama.org/2019/06/todays-attacks-on-ships-in-the-gulf-of-oman-are-not-in-irans-interest.html#more ..."
"... Maybe Colin Powell can come out of retirement and deliver the US/neocon presentation at the UN Security Council: https://www.youtube.com/embed/Rp6WuTSTyS8 ..."
"... The only person whom I can recall endlessly deceiving on this is Benjamin Netanyahu, whom I recall making speech after speech claiming that Iran was just about to have nuclear weapons. He's been doing that for over a decade now. ..."
"... As for incentives/disincentives, Mossad doesn't have much disincentive. If they are caught, they and their friends in the USA will scream 'Fake News!'. ..."
"... Who wants war? Saudis to prop up oil prices and get Iran in trouble? Pompeo because he wants to bring on the Rapture and the return of JC? Donald Trump so he can be a "wartime president" stir up his base and please the military contractor donors? Netanyahu to distract from his corruption charges and weaken Iranian Islamists? Some really stupid underground hardliners in Iran? ..."
"... I forgot one more who wants war: Bolton because he is an immoral idiot who wants to strut. ..."
Jun 15, 2019 | www.theamericanconservative.com

Clyde Schechter, says: June 14, 2019 at 4:58 pm

Back in the 1960's as the Cuban missile crisis was brewing, JFK conferred with then French president Charles DeGaulle and offered to show him the reconnaissance pictures showing the Russian missiles in Cuba. DeGaulle is said to have replied "No, I do not need to see pictures. The word of the President of the United States is enough."

It's impossible to imagine anyone saying that today, unless they still believe in the tooth fairy.

David Harrell , says: June 14, 2019 at 9:50 pm
It very well could an act by a state that according to an elite Army warfare college, is "known to disregard international law to accomplish mission" and also a "wildcard. Ruthless and cunning. Has capability to target U.S. forces and make it look like a Palestinian/Arab act."

What state? See "U.S. troops would enforce peace under Army study," Washington Times, September 10, 2001.

Janwaar Bibi , says: June 14, 2019 at 11:11 pm
A few years ago, Sheldon Adelson wanted the US to drop a nuke on Iran. Video below. What Sheldon wants, Trump the errand-boy delivers. The fact that the US public is overwhelmingly against a war with Iran is completely irrelevant.

https://www.youtube.com/embed/6sCW4IasWXc

Sydney , says: June 15, 2019 at 3:02 pm
Yes, Iran is to be blamed! Absolutely true, US President himself said so!

Let's look at some facts and then deductions. So, the US drone was following the Iranian boat. Iranians saw the drone, fired at it and missed. Regardless, they continued their "journey" to the tanker, all the while their supreme leader was trying to persuade Abe to help Iran.

Tump: It was Iran the terrorist nation, not leaders but the nation. Not long ago Trump lauded Iranians as very nice people. If the drone was there, why don't we see the beginning of the boat's journey and then where that boat with the mine went? According to Mr Pompeo and Mr Bolton, the nation of terrorists is not only evil but stupid too. Yet no other actor in the region has the sophistication to perform such an act (that is stupid act) – according to Mr.Pompeo. Hm who else, I wonder would be interested in bringing down Iran? I can't think even of one such actor.

Lily Sandoz , says: June 15, 2019 at 3:08 pm
Lest we forget. Gen. Wesley Clark's revelation. This was first revealed to General Wesley Clark in 1991 by neo-con Paul Wolfowitz. The seven countries which were to be invaded and blessed with regime change were Iraq, Libya, Syria, Lebanon, Somalia, Sudan, and the big prize, Iran with its wealth of resources and potential market of over 70 million persons.This same plan was revealed again to General Clark during a visit to the Pentagon ten days after 9-11, the event that presented the neo-cons, and no doubt others behind the scenes, with their Pearl Harbor, their justification to proceed with the plan, somewhat conveniently. You can see Clark say it in person on YouTube if you don't believe it.
grumpy realist , says: June 13, 2019 at 5:26 pm
The only thing missing is a bunch of Iranian passports "just accidentally found" near the ships with a big floating arrow pointing towards them, just in case we're clueless. If we get dragged into a bunfight with Iran because of this we deserve all the opprobrium anyone hurls at us–if only for our outright stupidity.
cdugga , says: June 13, 2019 at 5:35 pm
Who exactly wants the US to go to war with Iran? Iran?
Whitehead , says: June 13, 2019 at 5:52 pm
""This assessment is based on intelligence [I think we already know what the Saudis and Israelis want us to think], the weapons used [which were what again?], the level of expertise needed to execute the operation [more than what was needed to prove the existence of fake WMDs], recent similar Iranian attacks on shipping ['Iranian attacks' according to who, exactly?], and the fact that no proxy group operating in the area has the resources and proficiency to act with such a high degree of sophistication [so sophisticated there's no evidence they did it]," the Secretary said, without taking questions [or citing proof]"

He doesn't even bother with a Colin Powell style PowerPoint to convince us he believes any of the horsesh!t he's peddling. Real contempt for the American public.

Chris in Appalachia , says: June 13, 2019 at 5:57 pm
Probably a 50/50 chance it was an American-Saudi-Israel false flag.
Marky Mark , says: June 13, 2019 at 6:02 pm
It's always something maritime
USS Maine
The Maddox
Lusitania

Not a lot of witnesses, but heavy on consequences

mark_be , says: June 13, 2019 at 6:02 pm
Let's quote that fellow with the little moustache, shortly before he ordered the invasion of Poland: "I will provide a propagandistic casus belli. Its credibility doesn't matter. The victor will not be asked whether he told the truth." To think that the only obstacle between peace and war is a president too stupid to understand that he brought this on himself.
EarlyBird , says: June 13, 2019 at 6:20 pm
It's very sad that I trust the word of the Ayatollah Khameni more than the President of the United States or any of his spokesman. The proxy which had the weapons, level of expertise needed to execute the operation, resources and proficiency to act with such a high degree of sophistication is called the Central Intelligence Agency.
Kirt Higdon , says: June 13, 2019 at 6:32 pm
Reeks of false flag pretense by the neo-cons for war! Betting the US, Saudis or Israelis are responsible for this – perhaps all of them.
Sid Finster , says: June 13, 2019 at 6:37 pm
How utterly convenient! Abe is meeting with the Iranian leadership, what better time to attack Japanese tankers (what better time for Saudi Arabia, Israel and the neocons, that is)? Not 24 hours go by after the supposed attack and Pompeo already knows who did it and has a response ready. Why, it's almost like his mind were already made up! (But when it comes to, say, that Saudi prince who chops up journalists, it seems that we can never ever ever really know what happened!)

Just like how the Reichstag Fire took place and by pure happenstance, the Nazis had the Enabling Act all ready to go.

Sarcasm aside, everyone knows that Pompeo is lying, looking for an excuse to escalate tensions. The question is whether anyone will do anything about it.

Whine Merchant , says: June 13, 2019 at 6:44 pm
Jarred says that Bibi swears it wasn't Mossad, and Pompeo knows the pecking order in the White House, so he parrots the party line.
JEinCA , says: June 13, 2019 at 6:51 pm
If I was a betting man I'd put my money on the "actual" culprits being Mossad, CIA, MI6 or any combination of the three. The Neocons and Zionists in Washington are traitors to our Constitutional Republic! Don't let them drag us into another foreign war for Israel!

Remember the USS Liberty! Never Forget!

Gene Smolko , says: June 13, 2019 at 7:05 pm
Anyone believe this warmongering liar?
Krishnan Venkatram , says: June 13, 2019 at 7:09 pm
It is not unreasonable to smell a Bolton/MEK sized rat in this
dstraws , says: June 13, 2019 at 7:27 pm
And so it begins. An unwarranted accusation by a war-hawk, surprise.. surprise.
Myron K Hudson , says: June 13, 2019 at 7:28 pm
This is stupid and reckless enough to be the work of Saudi Arabia. Or Bolton and Pompeo.
Kurt Gayle , says: June 13, 2019 at 8:42 pm
Jason Ditz, the News Editor at Antiwar.com reports: "Pompeo's declaration of Iran's guilt was based chiefly on similar incidents happening in mid-May. John Bolton and Pompeo blamed Iran then, and since this was the same sort of thing, they blame Iran now. The problem is, they have offered no evidence Iran was responsible for the first incidents, let alone today's, and are just tying them all together. Pompeo rattled off a list of things to blame Iran for, including multiple incidents that were done by Yemen's Houthis, a rocket fired in Iraq that was never convincingly blamed on anyone, and an Afghanistan bombing that clearly was nothing to do with Iran at all."

Jason Ditz goes on to report: "The big questions are, as always, motive. Iran has no conceivable reason to attack such ships. In this case, one of the ships is even Japanese-owned. Japan is a very important trading partner of Iran, and Japan's prime minister Abe Shinzo is visiting Iran right now, trying to reduce tensions. Abe has also declared Iran to have no intention to make nuclear arms. This would be a preposterous move for Iran to even consider. Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif declared that 'suspicious doesn't begin to describe' what happened, noting that the attacks were timed to when Japanese PM Abe Shinzo was meeting with Iran's Supreme Leader. Abe's meeting was also a subject of Pompeo's comments, as Pompeo falsely accused Ayatollah Ali Khamenei of having refused the meeting with Abe. In reality, the meeting took place, and Khamenei simply rejected a proposal to trade messages with President Trump. Pompeo went on to declare the attack on a Japanese ship during Abe's Iran visit as an Iranian 'insult to Japan.' This all rests on the US assumption of Iran's guilt, and as Zarif points out, makes the attack look suspiciously like it might have been carried out for the benefit of the anti-Iran narrative. "

https://news.antiwar.com/2019/06/13/two-tankers-attacked-in-gulf-of-oman/

Janwaar Bibi , says: June 13, 2019 at 9:01 pm
I read somewhere that the Iranians used weapons of mass destruction given to them by Saddam to attack the USS Maine in the Gulf of Tonkin, taking American lives on American soil.
Myx , says: June 13, 2019 at 9:15 pm
What was that headline in the Onion? "An attack on Japanese oil tankers in the Gulf of Oman is an attack on America itself?"
Inspector General , says: June 13, 2019 at 9:20 pm
Odd that just yesterday I watched the video entitled, "Debunking a Century of War Lies."

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Yw0-ASR4sr8

I had forgotten that basically all wars are "protected by a bodyguard of lies," according to the video. Most poignant to me was the Iraqi woman pleading to Congress about Sadam Hussein's destruction of incubators, which George HW Bush later referenced as the "babies strewn about the floor like firewood." Except it was all fabricated by a PR firm!

Ken T , says: June 13, 2019 at 9:52 pm
cui bono ?

Is anyone really that delusional to believe that Iran is going to attack a Japanese tanker while the Japanese PM is meeting with the Ayatollah? The ONLY explanation that makes sense is that it was planned in the White House by Pompeo and Bolton. Whether it was with or without Trump's knowledge and approval is irrelevant. P & B have been openly salivating for any excuse to start a war with Iran, and Trump has given them free rein. It is a war crime, and all three are guilty.

PAX , says: June 14, 2019 at 12:09 am
The USS Liberty is spot on. That was our Versailles Treaty and Johnson ceded much of our foreign policy and intelligence to Israel – we capitulated and have continued to capitulate to Israel. Things are looking grim and look like a repeat of Iraq. What can stop this momentum to war?
Iron Felix , says: June 14, 2019 at 12:10 am
Well, it seems that just about 100% of those who comment here have this figured out. Once these things were a bit more sophisticated, but now the Empire doesn't seem to care if its schemes are blatantly transparent.

Abe has been closely consulting with Trump and the Iranians as a go-between to create the conditions which can allow Trump to save face now that Bolton's and Pompeo's campaign against Iran is a big fat failure.

It is clear who hopes to gain by this little stunt, which will not go anywhere. Abe is certainly not going to be fooled by any of this. Don't expect the WaPo or the NYT to expose this obvious false flag.

Jiyushugi , says: June 14, 2019 at 12:47 am
What a shame that more Americans haven't read 'The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich', by William L. Shirer ..
Daath , says: June 14, 2019 at 2:08 am
Iran is a rather divided country, and some groups regard USA with as much hatred and suspicion as the neocons hold towards them. The responsible party might have been IRGC, intending to raise tensions enough to make their government's current fence-straddling act unviable and force them to scrap the JCPA.

I'd try to avoid the logic that it must have been Saudis/Israel/USA, because if it was Iran, the likes of Bolton would somehow be in the right. They're not. So far, Iran hasn't been the one responsible for the vast majority of provocations, and even if it elements on their side were did this, the chickenhawks running USA's national security won't bother to secure proof before escalating. It's not a secret that they want war and aren't particularly picky about how they get it.

Brian Villanueva , says: June 14, 2019 at 2:15 am
Saudi Arabia. The other agencies speculated here are off the mark: Israel would fear getting caught, CIA leaks like a sieve, MI6 has no incentive. But the Saudis? They have the combination of economic incentives, religious hatred, technical knowledge, advanced (American) weaponry, and who-gives-a-crap-if-we-get-caught attitude.
Deacon Blue , says: June 14, 2019 at 3:19 am
In these matters, I know who NOT to believe.
HenionJD , says: June 14, 2019 at 7:14 am
And I have a bridge to sell y'all.
Kent , says: June 14, 2019 at 8:50 am
Results:

1. US attacks Iran on false pretenses and the world knows it.

2. Iran destroys shipping through the Straits of Hormuz.

3. Gasoline goes to $10/gallon, if you can find it.

4. The world's economy collapses, with international debt collapse and a global run on banks.

5. Unemployment goes to 25% and prices go through the roof as the dollar collapses in value and the US can't afford to import Chinese products.

6. Bernie Sanders is elected president, and the US becomes a democratic socialist state.

Way to go there Donnie.

Kurt Gayle , says: June 14, 2019 at 8:52 am
This updated post from "Moon of Alabama" is definitely worth reading: "Today's Attacks On Ships In The Gulf Of Oman Are Not In Iran's Interest – Or Are They? (Updated)": https://www.moonofalabama.org/2019/06/todays-attacks-on-ships-in-the-gulf-of-oman-are-not-in-irans-interest.html#more
Sam , says: June 14, 2019 at 8:53 am
Given Iran's history of endless deception in their nuclear weapons development program, might all these suggestions of these attacks being an American fabrication be a bit premature? How about even a tiny bit of objectivity? Or did Larsen write all these comments? (:
TheSnark , says: June 14, 2019 at 9:02 am
I have a question about the video footage supposedly showing Iranians removing a mine from a tanker. The quality of the picture is no better than that we saw back in the 1965 Tonkin Gulf incident, when N Vietnamese boats allegedly attacked a US Navy ship. But that was 54 years ago. In video technology today 1080p is a standard resolution, 4k is pretty common. Why is the US Navy still showing something that looks like it came from my Dad's 8mm home movie set-up?
Kurt Gayle , says: June 14, 2019 at 9:55 am
Maybe Colin Powell can come out of retirement and deliver the US/neocon presentation at the UN Security Council: https://www.youtube.com/embed/Rp6WuTSTyS8
FJR - Atlanta , says: June 14, 2019 at 9:58 am
Even Jesse Smollett isn't buying this.
Sid Finster , says: June 14, 2019 at 10:23 am
Sam wrote:

"Given Iran's history of endless deception in their nuclear weapons development program, might all these suggestions of these attacks being an American fabrication be a bit premature? How about even a tiny bit of objectivity? Or did Larsen write all these comments? (:"

What "history of endless deception"? Every third party has confirmed that Iran has complied strictly with the JCPOA.

The United States, on the other hand, has a long track record of blatant lies to get the wars it seeks ..

Sid Finster , says: June 14, 2019 at 10:24 am
@The Snark:

To quote myself, sorry "how utterly convenient!" Haven't we been reading a lot about deepfakes lately?

Mark B. , says: June 14, 2019 at 10:46 am
@ Kent

Exactly what I am hoping for IF the US attacks Iran. All depends on the Iranian capabilities to cripple the flow of oil from the ME. So I say: Go Iran, make us pay! And don't forget to throw some missiles on the royal Saudi palace and Riyad. Make that a few dozen. Or hundred.

Barry , says: June 14, 2019 at 11:00 am
Sam

"Given Iran's history of endless deception in their nuclear weapons development program, might all these suggestions of these attacks being an American fabrication be a bit premature? How about even a tiny bit of objectivity? Or did Larsen write all these comments? (:"

The only person whom I can recall endlessly deceiving on this is Benjamin Netanyahu, whom I recall making speech after speech claiming that Iran was just about to have nuclear weapons. He's been doing that for over a decade now.

As for incentives/disincentives, Mossad doesn't have much disincentive. If they are caught, they and their friends in the USA will scream 'Fake News!'.

Mr. Bone Saw has got to be extremely cocky now.

And both of them could reasonably expect that if they succeed in triggering a US-Iran war, that even later exposure wouldn't matter.

Kurt Gayle , says: June 14, 2019 at 11:02 am
Yesterday (June 13th) Rep. Tulsi Gabbard (D-Hawaii), a Democratic candidate for President in 2020, was interviewed by the Washington Post's Robert Costa. Here (at 23:58-28:06) is a brief excerpt of Rep. Gabbard's excellent views on US Iran policy:

https://www.youtube.com/embed/W0KGWFA_idU

Zgler , says: June 14, 2019 at 11:41 am
Who wants war? Saudis to prop up oil prices and get Iran in trouble? Pompeo because he wants to bring on the Rapture and the return of JC? Donald Trump so he can be a "wartime president" stir up his base and please the military contractor donors? Netanyahu to distract from his corruption charges and weaken Iranian Islamists? Some really stupid underground hardliners in Iran?

There are some plausible choices but none of them is the Iranian government.

Zgler , says: June 14, 2019 at 11:43 am
I forgot one more who wants war: Bolton because he is an immoral idiot who wants to strut.
DennisW , says: June 14, 2019 at 11:52 am
I frankly just don't believe anything coming form the US government anymore, especially warmongering neo-cons in charge of foreign policy, the Pentagon, and Deep State actors.

What on earth would Iran have to gain from attacking a Japanese oil tanker while their leader is meeting with the Japanese PM? More likely a false-flag CIA operation.

JeffK , says: June 14, 2019 at 12:00 pm
@TheSnark
June 14, 2019 at 9:02 am

"I have a question about the video footage supposedly showing Iranians removing a mine from a tanker. The quality of the picture is no better than that we saw back in the 1965 Tonkin Gulf incident, when N Vietnamese boats allegedly attacked a US Navy ship. But that was 54 years ago. In video technology today 1080p is a standard resolution, 4k is pretty common. Why is the US Navy still showing something that looks like it came from my Dad's 8mm home movie set-up?"

100%. When I heard on the news this morning that there was video showing Iranians, I thought "They have them". Then I saw the video. Now I call BS.

The Dean , says: June 14, 2019 at 12:22 pm
Are these the same guys that provided the irrefutable "evidence" of weapons of mass destruction in Iran?
I am sure that since the Mossad provides us with intelligence in that area of the world, they are completely objective, and have the best interest of the American military at heart.
Taras 77 , says: June 14, 2019 at 12:26 pm
@Snark: I tend to agree that the video raises more questions: -what would be the purpose of a mine above the water line?
-why does it take a group of 10-20 people milling about on the bow to remove a mine?
-does 10-20 people really indicate a clandestine effort to remove a mine, more like a clusterf____?

As OffGuardian remarked, does the deep state (cia,mi6,mossad) really think we are that stupid?

Sydney , says: June 14, 2019 at 1:06 pm
Why would Iranians attack their own interests? Because they are "evil". Let's see: Front Altair is owned by John Frederiksen, the owner of the Frontline Tanker company, who moved Iranian oil for nearly 40 years including during the "tanker war" with Iraq siding with Iran. Mr Federiksen was called Khomeini's blood life.
What about the Japanese tanker? While the Supreme Leader of Iran was working on Abe to help Iran?
Who's evil, who's stupid?
balconesfault , says: June 14, 2019 at 1:21 pm
James Fallows
@JamesFallows
Here is the problem with running the kind of govt the US has recently:

When you ask people to *believe* you, or give your "assessments" the benefit of the doubt, there is no reason that they should.

Kurt Gayle , says: June 14, 2019 at 2:06 pm
"Outrage on Capitol Hill over 'completely unacceptable' US-funded scheme to shape Iran debate," The Independent, Wednesday, June 12, 2019:

"United States officials say they are outraged by a government-funded troll campaign that has targeted American citizens critical of the administration's hardline Iran policy and accused critics of being loyal to the Tehran regime. State Department officials admitted to Congressional staff in a closed-door meeting on Monday that a project they had funded to counter Iranian propaganda had gone off the rails. Critics in Washington have gone further, saying that the programme resembled the type of troll farms used by autocratic regimes abroad. 'It's completely unacceptable that American taxpayer dollars supported a project that attacked Americans and others who are critical of the Trump administration's policy of escalation and conflict with Iran,' a senior Congressional aide told The Independent, on condition of anonymity. 'This is something that happens in authoritarian regimes, not democracies'."

The Independent article by Negar Mortazavi and Borzou Baragahi continues: "One woman behind the harassment campaign, a longtime Iranian-American activist, has received hundreds of thousands of dollars from the State Department over the years to promote 'freedom of expression and free access to information.' The campaign relentlessly attacked critics of the Iran policy on social media, including Twitter and Telegram messaging app, accusing them without evidence of being paid operatives of the regime in Tehran. A spokeswoman for the State Department told reporters on Monday that funding for the 'Iran Disinformation Project' had been suspended and is under review after it was reported that it went beyond the scope of its mandate by veering from countering propaganda from Iran to smearing domestic critics of White House policy. State Department officials disclosed to lawmakers they had granted $1.5 million for Iran Disinfo, which repeatedly targeted, harassed and smeared critics of Trump's tough stance against Iran on social media.

The Independent article noted: "Among those targeted were American activists, scholars, and journalists who challenged the Trump administration's 'maximum pressure campaign' against Iran. The revelation that US taxpayer money was being used to attack administration critics has now sparked a flurry of queries. 'There are still so many unanswered questions here,' Congresswoman Ilhan Omar wrote on Twitter. 'What rules are in place to prevent state-funded organisation from smearing American citizens? If there wasn't public outcry, would the Administration have suspended funding for Iran Disinfo?' Cold War-era US rules barring the use of government-funded propaganda against American citizens have been flouted for decades State Department officials speaking at the closed-door meeting admitted the project was out of bounds, according to Congressional staffers speaking to The Independent on condition of anonymity. Both Democratic and Republican Congressional staffers were highly critical of the project and questioned whether US officials should continue to work with the contractor, E-Collaborative for Civic Education. The State Department spokeswoman declined to outline steps to prevent such an operation in the future E-Collaborative for Civic Education, co-founded by Iranian American activist Mariam Memarsadeghi, is a long-time State Department contractor "

Foundation for Defence of Democracies and MEK involved in creating fake articles. The Independent continues:

"Congressional officials also confirmed to The Independent that one individual working for the Foundation for Defence of Democracies, an influential Washington organisation with hawkish views on Iran, is part of the E-Collaborative for Civic Education's Iran Disinformation Project Over the weekend, The Intercept revealed that a purported Iranian activist, who had published dozens of articles on Iran in prominent outlets such as Forbes and The Hill, does not exist and is a fake persona run by a team of operatives connected to a bizarre Iranian political cult. The "Heshmat Alavi" persona had a strong presence on Twitter and harassed Iranian journalists, academics, and activists who are critical of the Mujahedin-e-Khalq organisation, a one-time armed guerilla group now holed up in Albania. There is no known link between the Iran Disinfo programme and the fake persona. At least one was cited by the Trump administration as proof against the effectiveness of the Obama-era nuclear deal. Some of the MEK articles were also picked up by US government funded Voice of America's Persian-language service "

https://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/us-politics/us-iran-congress-meeting-money-trump-conflict-a8954191.html

Kolya Krassotkin , says: June 14, 2019 at 2:06 pm
Let's not forget the lies our great-grandparents were told to inveigle us into WWI: "German troops are raping Belgian nuns" and "German troops are using Belgian babies for bayonet practice."

100 years from now a future historian, (probably Russian or Chinese), writing about the collapse of the US, will chronicle how the Americans gullibly believed the war propagandists asserting that Iran fired on oil tankers, which belonged to it trading partner, with the same sense of disbelief we now feel upon reading of the crazy assertions made about German troops.

Un Citoyen , says: June 14, 2019 at 3:10 pm
The Japanese ship's captain came out today and said that there was no way the ship was hit by a mine as US claimed, it was hit above sea level and sailors saw something hitting the vessel, like a torpedo.

Why on earth would Iran want to bomb a Japanese ship in the middle of a visit by the Japanese PM?

This whole thing stinks to high heaven.

The US under the rule of the neocons in the Trump admin, the Pence-Pompeo-Bolton trifecta, is a menace and a danger to the whole world. From Iran to Venezuela, Ukraine to North Korea, China to Russia, there isn't a country these neocon stooges don't want to pick a quarrel with. America has become the greatest threat to world peace.

pax , says: June 14, 2019 at 3:13 pm
Sam – When was the last time Iran invaded another country? Why is Israel pushing so hard for us to fight yet another war on their behalf. As Ron Paul said – if they want to fight Iran – let them, but we must stand aside as they duke it out. Israel has created enough Gold Star mothers in the US. Time to do their own fighting. Larsen and Giraldi make a lot of sense.

[Jun 14, 2019] Forget Russiagate, Now It's US-gate! US Election Meddling Extends to Britain

Notable quotes:
"... Of course, AIPAC, Israel's lobbying organization in the US. does exactly that kind of thing every election year, but still, as a matter of decorum and at least the pretense of respect for other nations' sovereignty, one doesn't expect to hear a secretary of state talking about such crude interference in the democratic process in another country, particularly in a nation which is America's closest ally aside from perhaps outright dependencies like Taiwan or Dubai. ..."
"... Yet certainly nothing Russia is accused of doing -- like buying ads allegedly intended to promote division in the US on Facebook, or using bots to promote disharmony on various social media platforms -- comes close to what Pompeo is proposing doing: actually using the full weight of the US government, with its ability to offer gifts of free weapons or conversely to impose punitive tariffs, not to mention making available the nefarious abilities and persuasive powers of the CIA and NSA to prevent the selection of a chosen party leader as prime minister following victory in an election (Pompeo was CIA director before becoming Secretary of State). ..."
"... The hubris of this grotesque Tea Party Congressman-turned "top diplomat" is simply appalling. ..."
"... Pompeo may think he has to "save" the Jews of Britain from Corbyn and Britain from the anti-Brexiters in the Labour Party, but at the rate things are going here in the US, nobody is going to have to come in from the outside to "save" America from a Democratic president and a Democratic Congress in 2020. The Democrats, with their continuing whining about Russiagate, look like they'll manage that all by themselves. ..."
Jun 12, 2019 | www.strategic-culture.org

So now we have pompous Mike Pompeo, America's current Secretary of State, on a visit to the UK, assuring a group of British Jewish leaders in a closed-door meeting that the US would work to prevent Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn from becoming prime minister if his party were to win enough votes in the next national parliamentary election to get the opportunity to try and form a new British government.

In a recording leaked to the Washington Post , Pompeo assured a group of Jewish leaders in Britain yesterday that the US government would "push back" against Corbyn becoming prime minister in such a case, working behind the scenes to prevent a victorious Labour party from voting in Corbyn as Prime Minister.

In the British parliamentary system, the party with the most votes after an election, if it wins an outright majority, or, as the Conservatives did in the last election, a plurality of votes and then is able to successfully cobble together a majority by bringing in other parties, then can use that majority to elect a new prime minister. Normally the new PM is the leader of the party that won the most votes, but that need not be the case.

A questioner on the tape is heard asking Pompeo, "Would you be willing to work with us to take on actions if life becomes very difficult for Jews in the UK?" -- an obvious reference to a rabid ongoing campaign in the largely conservative UK media and among zionist groups in the UK to tar Corbyn as an anti-semite because of his outspoken defense of Palestinians under Israeli occupation.

Pompeo, obviously not aware he is being taped, appears to suggest in his answer on the leaked recording that the US would seek to prevent Corbyn from becoming PM. "It could be that Mr Corbyn manages to run the gauntlet and get elected," he says. "It's possible. You should know, we won't wait for him to do those things [presumably making life 'difficult for the Jews in the UK'] to begin to push back. We will do our level best. It's too risky and too important and too hard once it's already happened."

This -- an acknowledgment that the US would try to influence the selection of Britain's parliamentary leader -- is truly an astonishing statement coming from a top US government official, and particularly a secretary of state. I mean we all know that the US routinely messes with elections all over the third world, and even in European countries, but our leaders don't normally admit it, even in private, preferring to tout the US as a paragon of "democratic values."

Imagine if Corbyn were Prime Minister in 2020, and his foreign minister were caught on tape in the US telling a group of black leaders or Muslim leaders that his government would try mightily to prevent Donald Trump from winning re-election?

Oh, I know, he or she would immediately be given a ticker-tape parade in San Francisco, New York and Boston! But seriously, much of the nation, and the media, would go ballistic.

Of course, AIPAC, Israel's lobbying organization in the US. does exactly that kind of thing every election year, but still, as a matter of decorum and at least the pretense of respect for other nations' sovereignty, one doesn't expect to hear a secretary of state talking about such crude interference in the democratic process in another country, particularly in a nation which is America's closest ally aside from perhaps outright dependencies like Taiwan or Dubai.

Not surprisingly, the response in the UK has been mostly outrage.

A Labour Party official told the British Guardian newspaper, "President Trump and his officials' attempts to decide who will be Britain's next prime minister are an entirely unacceptable interference in the UK's democracy."

The dust-up over Pompeo's leaked remarks should be recalled as one contemplates the absurd obsession among Democrats here about alleged Russian meddling in the 2016 US election continues apace.

Yet certainly nothing Russia is accused of doing -- like buying ads allegedly intended to promote division in the US on Facebook, or using bots to promote disharmony on various social media platforms -- comes close to what Pompeo is proposing doing: actually using the full weight of the US government, with its ability to offer gifts of free weapons or conversely to impose punitive tariffs, not to mention making available the nefarious abilities and persuasive powers of the CIA and NSA to prevent the selection of a chosen party leader as prime minister following victory in an election (Pompeo was CIA director before becoming Secretary of State).

The hubris of this grotesque Tea Party Congressman-turned "top diplomat" is simply appalling.

One would have thought any self-respecting British Tory politician would have instantly denounced Pompeo's suggested intrusion into the workings of the British electoral system, but so far there hasn't been a peep from any of that party's leaders, who no doubt actually support the idea of the US preventing their nemesis Corbyn from ever moving into 10 Downing Street.

His comments may, however, have the effect of bolstering support for Corbyn among Labour's rank-and-file. Corbyn has already survived several concerted attempts from the Blairite faction of his party to unseat him as party leader, always emerging stronger from those attacks. My guess is the same thing will happen here, when a clumsy outsider from across the Atlantic offers to do the same thing.

Meanwhile American liberals should keep this incident in mind as they continue to wallow in the self-destructive effort to conjure up a fake story line that the Russians "stole" the 2016 election for Trump by undermining Hillary Clinton's campaign, when in fact it was the Democratic Party leadership and Clinton herself who blew that election. Those leaders are well on the way to blowing the next one, too, for example by refusing to hold a a presidential debate focused on the existential issue of climate change.

Pompeo may think he has to "save" the Jews of Britain from Corbyn and Britain from the anti-Brexiters in the Labour Party, but at the rate things are going here in the US, nobody is going to have to come in from the outside to "save" America from a Democratic president and a Democratic Congress in 2020. The Democrats, with their continuing whining about Russiagate, look like they'll manage that all by themselves.

[Jun 14, 2019] How NeoCon Billionaire Paul Singer Is Driving the Outsourcing of US Tech Jobs to Israel

Notable quotes:
"... With nearly 6 million Americans unemployed and regular bouts of layoffs in the U.S. tech industry, major American tech companies like Google, Microsoft and Intel Corporation are nonetheless moving key operations, billions in investments, and thousands of jobs to Israel -- a trend that has largely escaped media attention or concern from even "America first" politicians. The fact that this massive transfer of investment and jobs has been so overlooked is particularly striking given that it is largely the work of a single leading neoconservative Republican donor who has given millions of dollars to President Donald Trump. ..."
"... In this report, MintPress identifies dozens of former members of an elite Israeli military intelligence unit who now hold top positions at Microsoft, Google and Facebook. ..."
"... Yet, some of these tech giants, particularly those based in the U.S., are heavily investing in their Israeli branches while laying off thousands of American employees, all while receiving millions of dollars in U.S. government subsidies funded by American taxpayers. ..."
"... Particularly troubling is the fact that, since SUNC's founding, the number of former Unit 8200 members in top positions in American tech companies has skyrocketed. Based on a non-exhaustive analysis conducted by Mintpress of over 200 LinkedIn accounts of former Israeli military intelligence and intelligence officers in three major tech companies, numerous former Unit 8200 alumni were found to currently hold top managerial or executive positions in Microsoft, Google and Facebook. ..."
"... Similarly, at Google, 28 former Unit 8200 members at the company were identified from their LinkedIn accounts. Among them are Google's Engineering Director, its strategic partner manager, two growth marketing leads, its lead technical manager, and six product and program managers, including Google's manager for trust and safety search. ..."
"... Netanyahu further outlined this policy at the 2019 Cybertech conference in Tel Aviv, where he stated that Israel's emergence as one of the top five "cyber powers" had "required allowing this combination of military intelligence, academia and industry to converge in one place" and that this further required allowing "our graduates of our military and intelligence units to merge into companies with local partners and foreign partners." The direct tie-ins of SUNC to Netanyahu and the fact that Paul Singer has also been a long-time political donor and backer of Netanyahu suggest that SUNC is a key part of Netanyahu's policy of placing former military intelligence and intelligence operatives in strategic positions in major technology companies. ..."
"... This concern is further exacerbated by the deep ties connecting top tech companies like Microsoft and Google to the U.S. military. Microsoft and Google are both key military contractors -- Microsoft in particular, given that it is set to win a lucrative contract for the Pentagon's cloud management and has partnered with the Department of Defense to produce a "secure" election system known as ElectionGuard that is set to be implemented in some U.S. states for the 2020 general election. ..."
Jun 13, 2019 | www.strategic-culture.org

Several U.S. tech giants including Google, Microsoft and Intel Corporation have filled top positions with former members of Israeli military intelligence and are heavily investing in their Israeli branches while laying off thousands of American employees, all while receiving millions of dollars in U.S. government subsidies funded by American taxpayers.

With nearly 6 million Americans unemployed and regular bouts of layoffs in the U.S. tech industry, major American tech companies like Google, Microsoft and Intel Corporation are nonetheless moving key operations, billions in investments, and thousands of jobs to Israel -- a trend that has largely escaped media attention or concern from even "America first" politicians. The fact that this massive transfer of investment and jobs has been so overlooked is particularly striking given that it is largely the work of a single leading neoconservative Republican donor who has given millions of dollars to President Donald Trump.

To make matters worse, many of these top tech companies shifting investment and jobs to Israel at record rates continue to collect sizable U.S. government subsidies for their operations while they move critical aspects of their business abroad, continue to layoff thousands of American workers, and struggle to house their growing company branches in Israel. This is particularly troubling in light of the importance of the tech sector to the overall U.S. economy, as it accounts for 7.1 percent of total GDP and 11.6 percent of total private-sector payroll.

Furthermore, many of these companies are hiring members of controversial Israeli companies -- known to have spied on Americans, American companies, and U.S. federal agencies -- as well as numerous members of Israeli military intelligence as top managers and executives.

This massive transfer of the American tech industry has largely been the work of one leading Republican donor -- billionaire hedge fund manager Paul Singer, who also funds the neoconservative think tank American Enterprise Institute (AEI), the Islamophobic and hawkish think tank Foundation for Defense of Democracies (FDD), the Republican Jewish Coalition (RJC), and also funded the now-defunct Foreign Policy Initiative (FPI).

Singer's project to bolster Israel's tech economy at the U.S.' expense is known as Start-Up Nation Central, which he founded in response to the global Boycott, Divest and Sanctions (BDS) movement that seeks to use nonviolent means to pressure Israel to comply with international law in relation to its treatment of Palestinians.

This project is directly linked to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who in recent years has publicly mentioned that it has been his "deliberate policy" to have former members of Israel's "military and intelligence units merge into companies with local partners and foreign partners" in order to make it all but impossible for major corporations and foreign governments to boycott Israel.

In this report, MintPress identifies dozens of former members of an elite Israeli military intelligence unit who now hold top positions at Microsoft, Google and Facebook.

Singer's nonprofit organization has acted as the vehicle through which Netanyahu's policy has been realized, via the group's close connections to the Israeli PM and Singer's long-time support for Netanyahu and the Likud Party. With deep ties to Netanyahu, the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC), and controversial tech companies -- like Amdocs -- that spied on the American government, this Singer-funded organization has formed a nexus of connections between the public and private sectors of both the American and Israeli economies with the single goal of making Israel the new technology superpower, largely at the expense of the American economy and government, which currently gives $3.2 billion in aid to Israel annually.

Researched and developed in Israel

In recent years, the top U.S. tech companies have been shifting many of their most critical operations, particularly research and development, to one country: Israel. A 2016 report in Business Insider noted that Google, Facebook, Microsoft, Amazon and Apple had all opened up research and development (R&D) centers in recent years, with some of them having as many as three such centers in Israel, a country roughly the size of New Jersey. Other major tech companies that have also opened key operation and research centers in Israel include Sandisk, Nvidia, PayPal, Palantir and Dell. Forbes noted last year that the world's top 10 tech companies were now "doing mission-critical work in Israel that's core to their businesses back at HQ."

Yet, some of these tech giants, particularly those based in the U.S., are heavily investing in their Israeli branches while laying off thousands of American employees, all while receiving millions of dollars in U.S. government subsidies funded by American taxpayers.

For example, Intel Corporation, which is the world's second largest manufacturer of semiconductor computer chips and is headquartered in California, has long been a major employer in Israel, with over 10,000 employees in the Jewish state. However, earlier this year, Intel announced that it would be investing $11 billion in a new factory in Israel and would receive around $1 billion in an Israeli government grant for that investment. Just a matter of months after Intel announced its major new investment in Israel, it announced a new round of layoffs in the United States.

Yet this is just one recent example of what has become a trend for Intel. In 2018, Intel made public its plan to invest $5 billion in one of its Israeli factories and had invested an additional $15 billion in Israeli-created autonomous driving technology a year prior, creating thousands of Intel jobs in Israel. Notably, over that same time frame, Intel has cut nearly 12,000 jobs in the United States. While this great transfer of investment and jobs was undermining the U.S. economy and hurting American workers, particularly in the tech sector, Intel received over $25 million dollars in subsidies from the U.S. federal government.

A similar phenomenon has been occurring at another U.S.-based tech giant, Microsoft. Beginning in 2014 and continuing into 2018, Microsoft has laid off well over 20,000 employees , most of them Americans, in several different rounds of staff cuts. Over that same time period, Microsoft has been on a hiring spree in Israel, building new campuses and investing billions of dollars annually in its Israel-based research and development center and in other Israeli start-up companies , creating thousands of jobs abroad. In addition, Microsoft has been pumping millions of dollars into technology programs at Israeli universities and institutes, such as the Technion Institute . Over this same time frame, Microsoft has received nearly $197 million in subsidies from the state governments of Washington, Iowa and Virginia.

Though Israeli politicians and tech company executives have praised this dramatic shift as the result of Israel's tech prowess and growing reputation as a technological innovation hub, much of this dramatic shift has been the work of the Netanyahu-tied Singer's effort to counter a global movement aimed at boycotting Israel and to make Israel a global "cyber power."

Start-Up Nation Central and the Neocons

In 2009, a book titled Start Up Nation: The Story of Israel's Economic Miracle , written by American neoconservative Dan Senor and Jerusalem Post journalist Saul Singer (unrelated to Paul), quickly rose to the New York Times bestseller list for its depiction of Israel as the tech start-up capital of the world. The book -- published by the Council on Foreign Relations, where Senor was then serving as Adjunct Senior Fellow -- asserts that Israel's success in producing so many start-up companies resulted from the combination of its liberal immigration laws and its "leverage of the business talents of young people with military experience."

"The West needs innovation; Israel's got it," wrote Senor and Singer. In a post-publication interview with the blog Freakonomics , Senor asserted that service in the Israeli military was crucial to Israel's tech sector success, stating that:

"Certain units have become technology boot camps, where 18- to 22-year-olds get thrown projects and missions that would make the heads spin of their counterparts in universities or the private sector anywhere else in the world. The Israelis come out of the military not just with hands-on exposure to next-gen technology, but with training in teamwork, mission orientation, leadership, and a desire to continue serving their country by contributing to its tech sector -- a source of pride for just about every Israeli."

The book, in addition to the many accolades it received from the mainstream press, left a lasting impact on top Republican donor Paul Singer, known for funding the most influential neoconservative think tanks in America, as noted above. Paul Singer was so inspired by Senor and Singer's book that he decided to spend $20 million to fund and create an organization with a similar name. He created the Start-Up Nation Central (SUNC) just three years after the book's release in 2012 .

To achieve his vision, Singer – who is also a top donor to the Republican Party and Trump – tapped Israeli economist Eugene Kandel, who served as Netanyahu's national economic adviser and chaired the Israeli National Economic Council from 2009 to 2015.

Senor was likely directly involved in the creation of SUNC, as he was then employed by Paul Singer and, with neoconservatives Bill Kristol and Robert Kagan, co-founded the FPI, which Singer had long funded before it closed in 2017. In addition, Dan Senor's sister, Wendy Singer (unrelated to either Paul or Saul), long-time director of Israel's AIPAC office, became the organization's executive director.

SUNC's management team, in addition to Eugene Kandel and Wendy Singer, includes Guy Hilton as the organization's general manager. Hilton is a long-time marketing executive at Israeli telecommunications company Amdocs, where he "transformed" the company's marketing organization. Amdocs was once highly controversial in the United States after it was revealed by a 2001 Fox News investigation that numerous federal agencies had investigated the company, which then had contracts with the 25 largest telephone companies in the country, for its alleged role in an aggressive espionage operation that targeted the U.S. government. Hilton worked at Microsoft prior to joining Amdocs.

Beyond the management team, SUNC's board of directors includes Paul Singer, Dan Senor and Terry Kassel -- who work for Singer at his hedge fund, Elliott Management -- and Rapheal Ouzan. Ouzan was an officer in the elite foreign military intelligence unit of Israel, Unit 8200, who co-founded BillGuard the day after he left that unit, which is often compared to the U.S.' National Security Agency (NSA). Within five months of its founding, BillGuard was backed by funding from PayPal founder Peter Thiel and former CEO of Google, Eric Schmidt. Ouzan is also connected to U.S. tech companies that have greatly expanded their Israeli branches since SUNC's founding -- such as Microsoft, Google, PayPal and Intel, all of which support Ouzan's non-profit Israel Tech Challenge.

According to reports from the time published in Haaretz and Bloomberg , SUNC was explicitly founded to serve as " a foreign ministry for Israel's tech industry " and " to strength Israel's economy " while also aiming to counter the Boycott, Divest and Sanctions (BDS) movement that seeks to use a nonviolent boycott to end the illegal military occupation of the West Bank and Israeli apartheid, as well as the growth of illegal Jewish-only settlements in occupied Palestinian territory.

Since its founding, SUNC has sought to transfer tech jobs from foreign companies to Israel by developing connections and influence with foreign governments and companies so that they "deepen their relationship with Israel's tech industry." Though SUNC has since expanded to include other sectors of the Israeli "start-up" economy, its focus has long remained on Israel's tech, specifically its cybersecurity industry. Foreign investment in this single Israeli industry has grown from $227 million in 2014 to $815 million in 2018.

In addition to its own activities, SUNC appears to be closely linked to a similar organization, sponsored by Coca Cola and Daimler Mercedes Benz, called The Bridge , which also seeks to connect Israeli start-up companies with large international corporations. Indeed, SUNC, according to its website , was actually responsible for Daimler Mercedes Benz's decision to join The Bridge, thanks to a delegation from the company that SUNC hosted in Israel and the connections made during that visit.

Teaming up with Israel's Unit 8200

Members of Israel's signals intelligence Unit 8200 work under a Saudi flag. Photo | Moti Milrod

Notably, SUNC has deep ties to Israel's military intelligence unit known as Unit 8200 and, true to Start Up Nation' s praise of IDF service as key to Israel's success, has been instrumental in connecting Unit 8200 alumni with key roles in foreign companies, particularly American tech companies. For instance, Maty Zwaig , a former lieutenant colonel in Unit 8200, is SUNC's current director of human capital programs, and SUNC's current manager of strategic programs, Tamar Weiss , is also a former member of the unit.

One particularly glaring connection between SUNC and Unit 8200 can be seen in Inbal Arieli , who served as SUNC's Vice President of Strategic Partnerships from 2014 to 2017 and continues to serve as a senior adviser to the organization. Arieli, a former lieutenant in Unit 8200, is the founder and head of the 8200 Entrepreneurship and Innovation Support Program (EISP), which was the first start-up accelerator in Israel aimed at harnessing "the vast network and entrepreneurial DNA of [Unit] 8200 alumni" and is currently one of the top company accelerators in Israel. Arieli was the top executive at 8200 EISP while working at SUNC.

Another key connection between SUNC and Unit 8200 is SUNC's promotion of Team8, a company-creation platform whose CEO and co-founder is Nadav Zafrir, former commander of Unit 8200. In addition to prominently featuring Team8 and Zafrir on the cybersecurity section of its website, SUNC also sponsored a talk by Zafrir and an Israeli government economist at the World Economic Forum, often referred to as "Davos," that was attended personally by Paul Singer.

Team8's investors include Google's Eric Schmidt, Microsoft , and Walmart -- and it recently hired former head of the NSA and U.S. Cyber Command, retired Admiral Mike Rogers. Team8 described the decision to hire Rogers as being "instrumental in helping strategize" Team8's expansion in the United States. However, Jake Williams, a veteran of NSA's Tailored Access Operations hacking unit, told CyberScoop :

"Rogers is not being brought into this role because of his technical experience. It's purely because of his knowledge of classified operations and his ability to influence many in the U.S. government and private-sector contractors."

In addition to connections to Unit 8200-linked groups like Team8 and 8200 EISP, SUNC also directly collaborates with the IDF in an initiative aimed at preparing young Israeli women to serve in Unit 8200. That initiative, called the CyberGirlz Club , is jointly funded by Israel's Defense Ministry, SUNC and the Rashi Foundation, the philanthropic organization set up by the Leven family of Perrier-brand water, which has close ties to the Israeli government and IDF.

"Our aim is to bring the girls to this process already skilled, with the knowledge needed to pass the exams for Unit 8200 and serve in the military as programmers," Zwaig told Israel National News .

Seeding American tech

The connections between SUNC and Unit 8200 are troubling for more than a few reasons, one of which being that Unit 8200, often likened to the U.S.' NSA, closely coordinates with Israel's intelligence agency, the Mossad, and is responsible for 90 percent of the intelligence material obtained by the Israeli government, according to its former commander Yair Cohen. Cohen told Forbes in 2016, that "there isn't a major operation, from the Mossad or any intelligence security agency, that 8200 is not involved in." For obvious reasons, the fact that an organization founded by an American billionaire is actively promoting the presence of former military intelligence officers in foreign companies, specifically American companies, while also promoting the transfer of jobs and investment to that same country, is very troubling indeed.

Particularly troubling is the fact that, since SUNC's founding, the number of former Unit 8200 members in top positions in American tech companies has skyrocketed. Based on a non-exhaustive analysis conducted by Mintpress of over 200 LinkedIn accounts of former Israeli military intelligence and intelligence officers in three major tech companies, numerous former Unit 8200 alumni were found to currently hold top managerial or executive positions in Microsoft, Google and Facebook.

At Microsoft, managers for at least 15 of the company's products and programs -- including Microsoft's lead managers for engineering, product strategy, threat analytics and cloud business intelligence -- publicly listed their affiliation with Unit 8200 on their LinkedIn accounts. In addition, the general manager of Microsoft's Israeli Research and Development Center is also a former member of Unit 8200. In total, of the 200 accounts analyzed, 50 of them currently worked for Microsoft.

Similarly, at Google, 28 former Unit 8200 members at the company were identified from their LinkedIn accounts. Among them are Google's Engineering Director, its strategic partner manager, two growth marketing leads, its lead technical manager, and six product and program managers, including Google's manager for trust and safety search.

Facebook also has several Unit 8200 members in prominent positions, though fewer than Google and Microsoft. MintPress identified at least 13 Unit 8200 alumni working for Facebook, including its director of engineering, lead manager for express wi-fi, and technical program manager. Notably, Facebook has spent the last several years collaborating with Israel's government to censor Israel's critics.

Of course, there is likely much more influence of Unit 8200 on these companies than this non-exhaustive analysis revealed, given that many of these companies acquired several Israeli start-ups run by and staffed by many Unit 8200 alumni who subsequently went on to found new companies and start-ups a few years or shortly after acquisition. Furthermore, due to the limitations of LinkedIn's set-up, MintPress was not able to access the complete list of Unit 8200 alumni at these three tech companies, meaning that the eye-opening numbers found were generated by a relatively small sample.

This jump in Unit 8200 members in top positions in tech companies of global importance is actually a policy long promoted by Netanyahu, whose long-time economic adviser is the chief executive at SUNC. During an interview with Fox News last year, Netanyahu was asked by Fox News host Mark Levin if the large growth seen in recent years in Israel's technology sector was part of Netanyahu's plan. Netanyahu responded, "That's very much my plan It's a very deliberate policy." He later added that "Israel had technology because the military, especially military intelligence, produced a lot of capabilities. These incredibly gifted young men and women who come out of the military or the Mossad, they want to start their start-ups."

Netanyahu further outlined this policy at the 2019 Cybertech conference in Tel Aviv, where he stated that Israel's emergence as one of the top five "cyber powers" had "required allowing this combination of military intelligence, academia and industry to converge in one place" and that this further required allowing "our graduates of our military and intelligence units to merge into companies with local partners and foreign partners." The direct tie-ins of SUNC to Netanyahu and the fact that Paul Singer has also been a long-time political donor and backer of Netanyahu suggest that SUNC is a key part of Netanyahu's policy of placing former military intelligence and intelligence operatives in strategic positions in major technology companies.

Notably, just as SUNC was founded to counter the BDS movement, Netanyahu has asserted that this policy of ensuring Israel's role as a "cyber power" is aimed at increasing its diplomatic power and specifically undermining BDS as well as the United Nations, which has repeatedly condemned Israel's government for war crimes and violations of international law in relation to the Palestinians.

Building the bi-national surveillance state

Top U.S. tech companies have filled top positions with former members of Israeli military intelligence and moved strategic and critical operations to Israel, boosting Israel's economy at the expense of America's, and SUNC's role in this marked shift merits scrutiny.

A powerful American billionaire has built an influential organization with deep connections to the U.S.-Israel lobby (AIPAC), an Israeli company that has been repeatedly investigated for spying on the U.S. government (Amdocs), and the elite Israeli military intelligence unit (Unit 8200) that has used its influential connections to the U.S. government and the U.S. private sector to dramatically shift the operations and make-up of major companies in a critical sector of the U.S. economy.

Further consider that U.S. government documents leaked by Edward Snowden have flagged Israel as "leading threat" to the infrastructure of U.S. financial and banking institutions, which use much of the software produced by these top tech companies, and have also flagged Israel as a top espionage threat. One U.S. government document cited Israel as the third most aggressive intelligence service against the U.S. behind Russia and China. Thus, Paul Singer's pet project in Start-Up Nation Central has undermined not only the U.S. economy but arguably U.S. national security as well.

This concern is further exacerbated by the deep ties connecting top tech companies like Microsoft and Google to the U.S. military. Microsoft and Google are both key military contractors -- Microsoft in particular, given that it is set to win a lucrative contract for the Pentagon's cloud management and has partnered with the Department of Defense to produce a "secure" election system known as ElectionGuard that is set to be implemented in some U.S. states for the 2020 general election.

mintpressnews.com

[Jun 14, 2019] The real truth is that the Jews of Israel would greatly improve their future and prospects for survival immensely if they reassessed their foreign policies and choice of allies

Jun 14, 2019 | consortiumnews.com

Realist , June 13, 2019 at 14:18

Obviously, I hope the blood hounds catch up to John Brennan, tear him to pieces and piss all over the remains.

The question begging for an answer today is what puppet of Washington torpedoed those two oil tankers near the Strait of Hormuz. Or was it Washington's master, Israel, using one of its nifty silent German submarines? Bet they were itching to do that. It sure the hell was not Iran, which is not tired of living and has no desire to end up looking like the bombed-out skeletal remnants of Iraq, Libya, Syria or Yemen.


DH Fabian , June 13, 2019 at 14:38

With all due respect, your prejudices already tripped you up. Saudi Arabia, which has the most "say" over Mideast oil sales, has kept the US on a short leash for years. Not Israel. The lion's share of US aid to the Mideast goes to the Arab states -- not Israel. Over the last few years, we have seen a surge of anti-Israel propaganda resulting in a surge of anti-Jewish violence across the US. Israel doesn't have vast oil reserves. (Did I mention oil?) In fact, it's a tiny country, roughly the size of New Jersey -- some 1% of the Mideast region, with the remaining 99% of the region consisting of the Arab countries. Draw your own conclusions about those who claim that Israel is a military mega-power with some sort of magical control over the US government.

incontinent reader , June 13, 2019 at 19:27

Oh, poor powerless Israel, unsubsidized by Uncle Sam, at the mercy of 99% of the region, just as it was at the mercy of the owners of 95% of Palestine in 1948, a denialist of its nuclear weapons and other WMD programs, never provoking, yet always provoked by its neighbors, lacking political and economic influence in the US and everywhere else. And, an elephant in the room neither to be rebuked, nor even seen, lest one be attacked as a bigoted victimizer- and now in some States (Florida, the latest) as well as some nations (Britain, France Germany, and Austria, to name a few) subject to criminal penalties, including imprisonment for mere criticism. Thank you DH Fabian for setting the record straight.

Realist , June 13, 2019 at 19:53

It seems to have slipped your mind that Israel and the kingdom are working hand-in-glove pursuing the same anti-Iranian, anti-Palestinian, anti-Syrian and anti-Hezbollah policies. Saudi provides the cash, Israel provides the marching orders and Washington provides the military muscles, whether its own troops or Jihadi mercenaries.

Sorry you think an objective view of the carnage wreaked by Israeli policy and its "defense" forces against most of its immediate neighbors, especially the Palestinians whom they keep locked up within outdoor prisons called Gaza and the West Bank and use as live shooting galleries when the mood strikes them is "prejudice." More to the point, the routine and unprovoked attacks the IDF mount against, not only Palestinians, but also Syrians, Lebanese and Iranians within the borders of Syria and Lebanon, is best characterised by the military expression "with extreme prejudice."

Your contention that the "lion's share of US AID [emphasis mine] to the Mideast goes to the Arab states–not Israel" is a flat out lie. Egypt's AID is a pittance compared to Israel's free American taxpayer dollars, and Saudi Arabia is a cash cow paying its own way for every American armament procured by the kingdom, as is every other paying customer for US armaments within the Persian Gulf. Washington "gives" them nothing except the massive military alliance with which to keep Iranian influence and trade down–on a global, not just regional, level. And since Obomber deliberately rekindled the Cold War, an added objective of the Washington-Wahabist alliance is to keep Russia as disadvantaged as possible in every place and in every way. You are a hypocrite of the worst sort if you dare to consider the "nation building" expenditures Washington has feigned to spend rebuilding Iraq after first destroying that country as "AID." It wasn't "aid" it was bribe money to recruit Sunni Jihadis to serve as terrorists and cannon fodder in Washington's further military escapades in the region. I suppose you are counting it as aid whenever the American military flattens yet another Arab city, as it recently did to Mosul and Raqqua.

That Israel had no oil fields was certainly not a limiting factor in their attempt to gain hegemony over the entire region. In fact, it was an incentive. Their oil and gas needs are taken care of just fine through arrangements with all its Gulf States allies. They've been brokering the construction of pipelines to Europe through their territory and offshore carrying Arab gas. Moreover, Israel has been clearly trying to lay claim to both Syrian and Lebanese territories laden with petroleum deposits–another motivation to create this "Greater Israel" in a land populated by hardly any Jews. Steal the land and the resources are just an added bonus, I suppose is all right by both them and you.

Funny thing, Iran has more Jews living peacefully within its territory than you'll find in any of Israel's Gulf State allies all added together. Yet Israel wants to destroy Iran and facilitate the Wahabists (until they, like the fundy Christians decide that its time for scripture to be fulfilled and the Jews to be eradicated). I've no prejudice against Israelis because they are Jews. Individual Jews have played important roles as mentors and friends throughout my life, I am firmly against anti-Jewish bigotry, though the "anti-Semitism" card constantly played by Netayahu and the Zionists is clearly a thoroughly specious canard ginned up as a propaganda weapon. Israel is no more synonymous with world Jewry than are the nefarious Protocols of the Elders of Zion. They are both just fabricated rhetorical weapons, otherwise known as lies.

The real truth is that the Jews of Israel would greatly improve their future and prospects for survival immensely if they reassessed their foreign policies and choice of allies. Stop trying to colonise another people's land by persecuting and exterminating them, and stop exploiting the internecine hatreds among the sundry native clans, tribes and religious confessions in the area by forming military alliances with some of them and against others which is destined only to turn the whole region into a tinder box and killing ground. I cannot respect a people who would arm two opposing sides, encourage them both to fight to the death and then waltz in and claim the empty lands left behind by the dead. If you don't see that as an Israeli tactic in acquiring more Lebensraum, you are not being objective. If you don't see how Israel is exploiting the American government and military in pursuit of such goals, you are not being objective.

[Jun 10, 2019] Pompeo s promise to intervene against Corbyn should surprise no one by Catte Black

Jun 10, 2019 | off-guardian.org

alt media-verse is currently on fire with the news that the US State Dept's answer to Al Capone, Mike Pompeo, has been caught promising "Jewish leaders" to send the boys round to Jeremy Corbyn if he should get elected and subsequently prove to be uppity and out of line. According to the WaPo , who broke the story:

The remarks, which are contained in audio of a private meeting leaked to The Washington Post, make Pompeo the second senior U.S. official to comment on Britain's turbulent leadership succession in the past week.

During his meeting with Jewish leaders in New York, Pompeo was asked if Corbyn "is elected, would you be willing to work with us to take on actions if life becomes very difficult for Jews in the U.K.?"

In response, Pompeo said, "It could be that Mr. Corbyn manages to run the gantlet and get elected. It's possible. You should know, we won't wait for him to do those things to begin to push back. We will do our level best," he said to fervent applause from attendees.

"It's too risky and too important and too hard once it's already happened," he said.

Of course the idea the "Jewish leaders" harbor any real fear that Jeremy Corbyn (Jeremy Corbyn!) is going to make life "difficult" for British Jews if elected is simply risible. They know, just as every moderately informed person knows, that that's absurd. They know Corbyn has no wish to make life difficult for anybody – except possibly the uber wealthy and the profiteer class.

They know the "antisemitism" fear is just a cover for the very very real fear that a Corbyn government will break the unwritten rules of modern western governance and reject the agenda of austerity, exploitation and perpetual war that has been creating huge profits and ideological thrills for the blessed few over the last twenty years.

They know that what Pompeo is promising is action to prevent this possibility coming about.

People are up in arms about this, and some seem quite shocked. Apparently the idea the neoliberal elites would try regime change or regime-control on a relatively prosperous western country was something they didn't previously think possible.

Unfortunately it's more than possible. The state apparatus of the different western nations are a tight bond of mutual regard and interest, just as likely to foment regime change on their own or their allies' elected representatives as on those of impoverished or "developing" countries, if they believe those representatives threaten the perceived interests of the state. Of course it isn't too often necessary, since the same western state apparatus also works to ensure that only governments that don't threaten perceived state interests manage to get elected. But, when the unthinkable happens, MI5 and the CIA are quite happy to step up to the plate and throw their own or their allies' democratic governments out the window. It's happened – or nearly happened – at least twice in the last fifty years.

In the 1960s the UK security agencies, senior military and members of the royal family were apparently contemplating a fullblown coup against Labour prime minister Harold Wilson.

In 1975 it was Australia's turn , when democratically elected reforming prime minister Gough Whitlam was overthrown in a bloodless constitutional coup organised jointly by the US and UK .

The old empire and the new have form in this regard, and this means no one should take Pompeo's words (spoken in private let's not forget) lightly.

It's also interesting to look at how the WaPo frames the revelation. There's no sense of outrage or surprise there. In fact it's an almost matter-of-fact piece, written with no awareness of its potential impact. Even those in the comments who object in some form are mostly doing it within the permissible current language of dissent – blaming Trump , because in these identity politics-saturated times, your morality resides in who or what you are NOT in what you do.

To the WaPo – and many of its readers – there's nothing intrinsically either wrong or surprising in the idea a US secretary of state should be overtly promising to interfere in the democratic governance of another country.

It's just what they do when they need to.

Barovsky

See Caitlin Johnson’s piece: https://caitlinjohnstone.com/2019/06/10/uh-what-did-pompeo-mean-when-he-vowed-to-push-back-against-corbyn/

[Jun 08, 2019] Trump has gathered the US Jewish vultures to handle his "deal of the century'

Jun 08, 2019 | www.unz.com

renfro , says: June 7, 2019 at 1:56 am GMT

I had concerns about her ties to India and therefore Israel. But I doubt she would let Jews or Israelis run the US like Trump does.

Trump has gathered the US Jewish vultures to handle his "deal of the century' ..and that deal will be raping Palestine and as much of the ME as they can. Given the opportunity I don't know whose throat I'd cut first probably the little girlie fop Kushner.

White House invites key Trump business allies to Bahrain forum in search for a Middle East 'deal of the century' .. CNBC

[MORE]

The White House has invited some of President Trump's key business allies to an event in Bahrain intended to kick-start the administration's long-awaited Middle East peace plan. The Bahrain meeting will focus on the economic part of the "deal of the century," which has been led by Jared Kushner. Tom Barrack, CEO of real estate investment firm Colony Capital, will be heading to the event. Blackstone's Steve Schwarzman, BlackRock's Larry Fink and Goldman Sachs' Dina Powell were also invited.

Tom Barrack, a loyal supporter of the president and the CEO of real estate investment firm Colony Capital, will be heading to the event slated to start on June 25 at the Four Seasons in Bahrain's capital, Manama.

"Tom is pleased to be a participant in a well organized forum for the purpose of advancing the peace process in the Middle East," said his spokesman, Owen Blicksilver. "He has been a lifelong advocate of economic prosperity being a foundation stone of hope for the entire region especially its exploding young and largely unemployed population."

Blackstone CEO Steve Schwarzman, BlackRock CEO Larry Fink and Goldman Sachs' Dina Powell are among the heavy hitters who have been invited to the gathering dubbed "Peace to Prosperity," according to people familiar with the planning.

Schwarzman is likely to attend, one of the people said, while Fink will not be going due to previous commitments, a separate source added. It's unclear whether Powell, a former deputy national security advisor under Trump, will join the group.

Schwarzman is a top donor to Trump's reelection campaign. In 2017, he contributed $344,400 Trump's joint fundraising committee.
Blackstone, BlackRock and Goldman Sachs all have extensive ties to the Middle East, including offices in Dubai, Riyadh and Tel-Aviv.
A senior administration official did not deny that Schwarzman, Fink and Powell were invited to the forum.

The Trump White House and its associates have close ties to Bahrain. Reuters previously reported that the administration was pursuing a nearly $5 billion sale of F-16 fighter jets to island nation in the Gulf. The president's outside lawyer, Rudy Giuliani, landed a security consulting contract with the country's Ministry of Interior, The Daily Beast reported.

A team of White House officials led by Kushner has been attempting to bring Israeli and Palestinian leaders to the negotiating table since the administration's earliest days. Last month, the White House announced the Bahrain summit, which was described at the time as a chance for attendees to "galvanize support for potential economic investments and initiatives that could be made possible by a peace agreement," with a particular focus on Palestinians.

Meanwhile, Palestinian business executives are turning down invitations to the event, which Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas has ripped.

"Trump's 'deal of the century' will go to hell, as will the economic workshop in Bahrain that the Americans intend to hold and present illusions," Abbas said last week.

Kushner, in a recent interview with Axios, fired back at the Palestinian government, and blamed the leadership for the loss of U.S. aid that was cut from the West Bank and Gaza.

"The actions we've taken were because America's aid is not entitlement. Right, if we make certain decisions which we're allowed to as a sovereign nation to respect the rights of another sovereign nation and we get criticized by that government, the response of this president is not to say, 'Oh, let me give you more aid,'" Kushner said.

Representatives from wealthy Gulf states the United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia will be attending. Officials from Qatar are set to take part as well.

Barrack, who was the chairman of Trump's inaugural committee and is a grandson of Lebanese immigrants, has a long history of attempting to make inroads in the Middle East, particularly through advocating for business investments.

While Barrack is not running point on the Trump administration's efforts, he is still deeply involved in the process. He authored a white paper for the administration titled "The Trump Middle East Marshall Plan," which specifically mentions expanding U.S. and international business opportunities there as a way to unite the region.

[Jun 05, 2019] More info on Mossad foreknowledge of 9/11 in recent book focusing on FBI investigation:

May 21, 2019 | www.mintpressnews.com

WJ | May 19, 2019 4:42:59 PM | 13

More info on Mossad foreknowledge of 9/11 in recent book focusing on FBI investigation:

https://www.mintpressnews.com/newly-released-fbi-docs-shed-light-on-apparent-mossad-foreknowledge-of-9-11-attacks/258581/

[Jun 05, 2019] Look at a quote from one of the former employees of the Mossad front operation Urban Moving Systems

Notable quotes:
"... In addition to the strange nature of some of the Israelis' possessions in the van and on their person, the company that employed them -- Urban Moving Systems -- was of special interest to the FBI, which concluded that the company was likely a "fraudulent operation." Upon a search of the company's premises, the FBI noted that "little evidence of a legitimate business operation was found." The FBI report also noted that there were an "unusually large number of computers relative to the number of employees for such a fairly small business" and that "further investigation identified several pseudo-names or aliases associated with Urban Moving Systems and its operations." ..."
"... The FBI presence at the Urban Moving Systems search site drew the attention of the local media and was later reported on both television and in the local press. A former Urban Moving Systems employee later contacted the Newark Division with information indicating that he had quit his employment with Urban Moving Systems as a result of the high amount of anti-American sentiment present among Urban's employees. ..."
"... The former employee stated that an Israeli employee of Urban had even once remarked, "Give us twenty years and we'll take over your media and destroy your country" (page 37 of the FBI report ). ..."
"... This is a long article, but read it all the way through. It's proof that Israel was indeed behind 9/11 and that they had numerous operatives in the country who were gleeful about it, having set up video cameras and celebrated the day before by taking a photo of one of the operatives holding a lit cigarette lighter up to the horizon....right in front of the still-standing WTC twin towers. ..."
May 19, 2019 | www.zerohedge.com

regime change wars have been counterproductive to the interests of the American people...

... but very good for APARTHEID Israhell.

ALL MidEast terrorism and warmongering are for APARTHEID Israhell.


Son of Captain Nemo , 1 hour ago link

Hey Tulsi.

Have an idea for you on how to show true leadership and finish what the Orange "six-sided star" liar said he would pick up ( https://www.paulcraigroberts.org/2016/11/14/trump-im-reopening-911-investigation/ ) when he began his presidency and then... well... lied to become a treasonous bag of **** just like the ones that preceded him!...

Even Vlad Putin and the rest of the Russian Federation refuse to "touch it". And if you did. You would be the only representative in the U.S. House and Senate let alone the U.S. Federal, State and local government(s) for that matter to do so.

All you would have to say is "we need an understanding why 2 planes demolished 3 building(s) at "Ground Zero" more then 18 years ago, and why the 9/11 Commission never mentioned the Solomon Brothers Building 7 in it's official report?... I (Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard) certainly want to know!... Especially wearing the uniform for what I believed was the reason I was given for invading Afghanistan and Iraq and murdering over 3 million people?... And I want to tell the American people ultimately "why" Building 7 was omitted along with too many other details that Robert Mueller famously dismissed by saying only that " mistakes were made " ...

I've written to you several times about showing the courage to be the only politician since Senator Wellstone to pick up where he left off and support the 13 year endeavors of this organization ( https://www.ae911truth.org/ ) to demand an investigation of the fact(s) now that has the backing of a Grand Jury by signing it's petition!...

But you won't. Because you are like every other "200lbs of ****" in a 100lbs bag that walks the halls of the Longworth carrying the water for the "Tribe"!

Keep telling yourself surfer **** that the job will get both easier and better by lying about that day and what it's done in it's wake to every institution and business in the United States of America let alone the laws of the land just like your mentor the Langley Bath House "boy"!...

dunlin , 1 hour ago link

Yes, Putin knows that an island of sanity and decency in a cesspit of bigotry and firearms is bound to be blown to pieces before she has a chance to deliver. I fear for Tulsi even now.

spoonful , 1 hour ago link

She sounds like the Trump of the 2020 campaign

Benito_Camela , 1 hour ago link

Yes, the Russia nonsense is FAKE NEWS. So why is Trump allowing the Israelis, a country that hates the United States, and which has attacked us at least twice (USS Liberty, 9/11/2001), to dictate our foreign policy? Israel is the real enemy!!

Let's look at a quote from one of the former employees of the Mossad front operation "Urban Moving Systems" (likely also the same people who planted the explosives at WTC) had to say about his time there:

In addition to the strange nature of some of the Israelis' possessions in the van and on their person, the company that employed them -- Urban Moving Systems -- was of special interest to the FBI, which concluded that the company was likely a "fraudulent operation." Upon a search of the company's premises, the FBI noted that "little evidence of a legitimate business operation was found." The FBI report also noted that there were an "unusually large number of computers relative to the number of employees for such a fairly small business" and that "further investigation identified several pseudo-names or aliases associated with Urban Moving Systems and its operations."

The FBI presence at the Urban Moving Systems search site drew the attention of the local media and was later reported on both television and in the local press. A former Urban Moving Systems employee later contacted the Newark Division with information indicating that he had quit his employment with Urban Moving Systems as a result of the high amount of anti-American sentiment present among Urban's employees.

The former employee stated that an Israeli employee of Urban had even once remarked, "Give us twenty years and we'll take over your media and destroy your country" (page 37 of the FBI report ).

This kind of thing makes one kind of hope for a war in which Israel is bombed back to the stone age, which is clearly where these evil, psychopathic Zionist filth belong!

This is a long article, but read it all the way through. It's proof that Israel was indeed behind 9/11 and that they had numerous operatives in the country who were gleeful about it, having set up video cameras and celebrated the day before by taking a photo of one of the operatives holding a lit cigarette lighter up to the horizon....right in front of the still-standing WTC twin towers.

https://www.mintpressnews.com/newly-released-fbi-docs-shed-light-on-apparent-mossad-foreknowledge-of-9-11-attacks/258581/

For further reference:

Benito_Camela , 1 hour ago link

And look at this. You won't see this in the MSM any time soon:

In addition to Urban Moving Systems, another moving company, Classic International Movers, became of interest in connection with the investigation into the "Dancing Israelis," which led to the arrest and detention of four Israeli nationals who worked for this separate moving company. The FBI's Miami Division had alerted the Newark Division that Classic International Movers was believed to have been used by one of the 19 alleged 9/11 hijackers before the attack, and one of the "Dancing Israelis" had the number for Classic International Movers written in a notebook that was seized at the time of his arrest. The report further states that one of the Israelis of Classic International Movers who was arrested "was visibly disturbed by the Agents' questioning regarding his personal email account."

[Jun 05, 2019] Still voting for Big Brother ? You might be a low-information voter

Any politician who voted for Iraq war should be voted out of the office and prohibited to hold any public office for life. They are all bottomfeeders, which conspired to convert the USA into National Security State. Officials in Bush administration and first of all Cheney need to be put on trial for destruction of evidence...
Notable quotes:
"... The FBI released the, "Five Dancing Israelis," that were arrested by the NYPD on 9-11 for filming and celebrating the attacks on the WTC and driving around in a van that tested positive for explosives. These were admitted Mossad agents working undercover in the USA. ..."
"... Those "idiots" were subsequently determined to be Mossad. The motto of Mossad was, until recently, "By way of deception thou shalt do war." ..."
May 13, 2019 | www.zerohedge.com

If you have never heard of the "Five Dancing Israelis," you might be a low-information voter.

The FBI released the, "Five Dancing Israelis," that were arrested by the NYPD on 9-11 for filming and celebrating the attacks on the WTC and driving around in a van that tested positive for explosives. These were admitted Mossad agents working undercover in the USA.

https://www.zerohedge.com/news/2016-03-08/do-you-remember-five-men-bein

hedgeless_horseman , 2 hours ago link

So you think that the dancing Israelis did it because a camera, mounted on a tripod, saw some idiots dancing on a roof? And somebody said that the furniture van was contaminated with explosive?

Those "idiots" were subsequently determined to be Mossad. The motto of Mossad was, until recently, "By way of deception thou shalt do war."

[Jun 05, 2019] US Threatens Europe With Loss Of Access To US Financial System Over SWIFT-Evading Iran SPV

Notable quotes:
"... Trump administration is escalating its battle with "European allies" over the fate of the Iran nuclear accord, and is "threatening penalties against the financial body created by Germany, the U.K. and France to shield trade with the Islamic Republic from U.S. sanctions. " ..."
"... While it is obvious that the US ire was sparked by the realization - and alarm - that cracks are appearing in the dollar's reserve status, opponents of Instex argue - at least for public consumption purposes - that the mechanism is flawed because the Iranian institution designated to work with Instex, the Special Trade and Finance Instrument, has shareholders with links to entities already facing sanctions from the U.S ..."
"... "When transactions move beyond that, it doesn't matter what vehicle's out there, if the transaction is sanctionable, we will evaluate it, review it, and if appropriate, levy sanctions against those that were involved in that transaction," Pompeo said. "It's very straightforward." ..."
"... In 2018, Europe made a huge stink about not being bound by Trump's unilateral breach of the Iranian deal, and said it would continue regardless of US threats. But now that the threats have clearly escalated, and Washington has made it clear it won't take no for an answer, it will be interesting to see if Europe's resolve to take on Trump - especially in light of the trade war with China - has fizzled ..."
"... that's too Boltonesque or Pompeonish and would only denigrate Europe for no reason. ..."
"... This is the latest move (in a very long line) by Jewish-freemason banksters to take over the world. The USA is owned and run by them and is used simply for their ends and purposes. ..."
"... Trumpsters cheering on DJT need to be aware that they have as much regard and affection for you and for your country as they do for a mangy dog. ..."
"... The US is starting to act a bit too unhinged now. Even the zombies are starting to wonder what the problem is with the US and the USD. Not very smart to be so loud, aggressive and threatening all the time. ..."
"... What we are witnessing in the US sanctions, threats, and illegal and costly military operations around the globe are the final throes and spasms of a dying, yet still dangerous, wounded animal ..."
"... Global trade in its current form with trade routes stretching all around the world is unsustainable due to rapidly depleting oil/energy. ..."
"... If you cut through all the propaganda and look only at actions taken by the U.S. government, it certainly does look like America is taking numerous intentional steps to disconnect itself from global trade with long-standing international partners in Europe, Asia and the Middle East ..."
"... America acting the big bully and pissing off all our international trade partners is just an act. Don't worry, the long term plan is exactly what you're wishing for, more or less. Though, since the Middle East still has so much oil, chances are America and its military will remain there for quite a while longer -- but that's the only reason. ..."
"... America is on the path of sanctioning itself into isolation. The US is shooting itself someplace much more sensitive with all these sanctions, tariffs, and warmongering. ..."
"... Soon the isolated US will ONLY have Israel, Saudi Arabia, UAE, Canada and Britain to have economic relationship with. I wonder what do these assets of the US and former British colonies can offer to one another in the form of meaningful trade? Oil, maple syrup, weapons, sand, and British tea. ..."
"... In 2018, Europe made a huge stink about not being bound by Trump's unilateral breach of the Iranian deal, and said it would continue regardless of US threats. But now that the threats have clearly escalated, and Washington has made it clear it won't take no for an answer, it will be interesting to see if Europe's resolve to take on Trump - especially in light of the trade war with China - has fizzled. ..."
"... It's easier to replace SWIFT than replace a reserve currency the petro-dollar is today. They've tried at no avail. So long as our economy kicks ***, it will be hard to replace USD as a reserve money. ..."
"... The issue isn't just SWIFT. It's "access to US markets". Sayanim Pompeo is threatening them with the nuclear option: Financial MAD. ..."
"... Trump seems to think he's CEO of the planet and all the countries are just different departments of his corporation. ..."
"... It's worse than that. Thump thinks that Bibi is Chairman of the Board, and Adelson is a Senior Board Member of a small (((Board))) ..."
May 29, 2019 | www.zerohedge.com

It's going from bad to worse for Europe, whose currency had just hit session lows after Brussels confirmed that Italy faces a massive fine over its debt, when the Euro was hit with a double whammy after Bloomberg reported that the Trump administration is escalating its battle with "European allies" over the fate of the Iran nuclear accord, and is "threatening penalties against the financial body created by Germany, the U.K. and France to shield trade with the Islamic Republic from U.S. sanctions. "

According to Bloomberg, the Treasury Department's undersecretary for terrorism and financial intelligence, Sigal Mandelker, sent a letter on May 7 warning that Instex, the European SPV to sustain trade with Tehran, and anyone associated with it could be barred from the U.S. financial system if it goes into effect.

As a reminder, last September, in order to maintain a financial relationship with Iran that can not be vetoed by the US, Europe unveiled a "Special Purpose Vehicle" to bypass SWIFT. Back then we predicted that Washington would not be too delighted with this development seeking to undermine the dollar's reserve status. We were right.

EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini alongside Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif

"I urge you to carefully consider the potential sanctions exposure of Instex," Mandelker wrote in the letter to Instex President Per Fischer. "Engaging in activities that run afoul of U.S. sanctions can result in severe consequences, including a loss of access to the U.S. financial system."

Germany, France and the U.K. finalized the Instex system in January, allowing companies to trade with Iran without the use of U.S. dollars or American banks, allowing them to get around wide-ranging U.S. sanctions that were imposed after the Trump administration abandoned the 2015 Iran nuclear deal last year.

Not surprisingly, a senior admin official behind the eltter said the U.S. decided to issue the threat " after concluding that European officials, who had earlier downplayed the significance of Instex in conversations with the Trump administration, were far more serious about it than they had initially let on. "

The official, who asked not to be identified discussing internal deliberations, said the letter was intended to serve as a warning that the U.S. would punish anyone associated with Instex -- including businesses, government officials and staff -- if they were working to set up a program to help Iran evade U.S. sanctions.

"This is a shot across the bow of a European political establishment committed to using Instex and its sanctions-connected Iranian counterpart to circumvent U.S. measures, " said Mark Dubowitz, the chief executive officer of the Foundation for Defense of Democracies in Washington.

When asked to comment on the letter, the Treasury Department issued a statement saying "entities that transact in trade with the Iranian regime through any means may expose themselves to considerable sanctions risk, and Treasury intends to aggressively enforce our authorities."

At the heart of the latest US move is the argument that Iran and its central bank use deceptive financial practices and haven't implemented minimum global safeguards against money laundering and terrorism financing, according to Bloomberg.

While it is obvious that the US ire was sparked by the realization - and alarm - that cracks are appearing in the dollar's reserve status, opponents of Instex argue - at least for public consumption purposes - that the mechanism is flawed because the Iranian institution designated to work with Instex, the Special Trade and Finance Instrument, has shareholders with links to entities already facing sanctions from the U.S .

Meanwhile, during a visit to London on May 8, Mike Pompeo also warned that there was no need for Instex because the U.S. allows for humanitarian and medical products to get into Iran without sanction.

"When transactions move beyond that, it doesn't matter what vehicle's out there, if the transaction is sanctionable, we will evaluate it, review it, and if appropriate, levy sanctions against those that were involved in that transaction," Pompeo said. "It's very straightforward."

In 2018, Europe made a huge stink about not being bound by Trump's unilateral breach of the Iranian deal, and said it would continue regardless of US threats. But now that the threats have clearly escalated, and Washington has made it clear it won't take no for an answer, it will be interesting to see if Europe's resolve to take on Trump - especially in light of the trade war with China - has fizzled.


carman , 5 minutes ago link

Europe should tell the U S to go F--- themselves, you don't dictate to Europe who we trade with.

hugin-o-munin , 2 minutes ago link

No that's too Boltonesque or Pompeonish and would only denigrate Europe for no reason.

zob2020 , 5 minutes ago link

Those shits are only promising... they never keep their promises to free Europe from their grip

mailll , 6 minutes ago link

Makes me wonder why year after year China's GDP increases and never decreases while the US GDP does periodically go into the negative zone and when it is positive, it isn't that much positive.

With our control we try to have over foreign countries coupled with our antiquated and overpriced education system, we are heading nowhere very fast while China continues to grow.

https://tradingeconomics.com/china/gdp-growth-annual

Airstrip1 , 7 minutes ago link

This is the latest move (in a very long line) by Jewish-freemason banksters to take over the world. The USA is owned and run by them and is used simply for their ends and purposes.

Trumpsters cheering on DJT need to be aware that they have as much regard and affection for you and for your country as they do for a mangy dog.

Aussiestirrer , 9 minutes ago link

Ussa = Terrorist Superpower with no shame or decency. The sooner you wipe yourselves out the better for this planet.

activisor , 9 minutes ago link

Europe has been servile to the US since the end of WW2. Germany in particular has continually bowed to US pressure and surely the time has come to kick the US out of Ramstein Air Base which houses over 60,000 personnel including 5000 non US military.

The US also continues to stir its anti Russia interference in compliant countries especially the Ukraine. Europe should dismantle the EU and the euro and revert to sovereign nations using their own currencies. NATO is US driven and hinders not helps European cooperation. There is no military threat in Europe full stop.

hugin-o-munin , 10 minutes ago link

The US is starting to act a bit too unhinged now. Even the zombies are starting to wonder what the problem is with the US and the USD. Not very smart to be so loud, aggressive and threatening all the time.

BIWEEE , 12 minutes ago link

What we are witnessing in the US sanctions, threats, and illegal and costly military operations around the globe are the final throes and spasms of a dying, yet still dangerous, wounded animal. The US has been killed by the criminal Satanic

Ashkenazi Bolshevik Khazar filth who did 911. The US and Israel are the two most hated countries on earth.

MrNoItAll , 1 hour ago link

This is all part of a long term plan intended to rearrange global trade arrangements. The future we are heading into is one where "global" trade will be much more regional, by necessity. Global trade in its current form with trade routes stretching all around the world is unsustainable due to rapidly depleting oil/energy.

Europe, Asia and the Middle East need to make their own financial and trade arrangements -- this manufactured disagreement will force companies and governments to adapt to that reality.

America is intentionally cutting itself off from trade with Europe and Asia to force self-sustainability for the Americas continent and for American companies, because that's what the future demands -- it is what's sustainable long term.

The Trade War and this contrived spat with Europe and many other trade-related "conflicts" getting publicity are all part of a multi-pronged action plan to force painful and politically untenable changes on companies and governments in preparation for a future that will be characterized by much less oil/energy and by extension, much more localized and regional trade and finance.

Savvy , 54 minutes ago link

America is intentionally cutting itself off from trade with Europe and Asia to force self-sustainability for the Americas continent and for American companies

I'd love to believe that but you're going to have to take your war machine home with you or what you say means **** all.

MrNoItAll , 47 minutes ago link

If you cut through all the propaganda and look only at actions taken by the U.S. government, it certainly does look like America is taking numerous intentional steps to disconnect itself from global trade with long-standing international partners in Europe, Asia and the Middle East.

Actions speak louder than words. The rational for bringing an end to all these energy-intensive trade and financial arrangements that were created back when oil WAS cheap and plentiful begins to make a lot of sense.

America acting the big bully and pissing off all our international trade partners is just an act. Don't worry, the long term plan is exactly what you're wishing for, more or less. Though, since the Middle East still has so much oil, chances are America and its military will remain there for quite a while longer -- but that's the only reason.

JohnnyAmerica , 1 hour ago link

"Iran and its central bank use deceptive financial practices and haven't implemented minimum global safeguards against money laundering and terrorism financing, according to Bloomberg." This is akin to Stalin telling Mao to be nicer to his citizens.

potkettleblack.

No nation will ever be sovereign until the International Banking Tyrants and their relatives to the third cousin receive a very public guillotine haircut.

Blue2B , 1 hour ago link

Everyday, a new threat by the rusty meat-grinder known as the Untied State of Israel. Which country will we read a war tweet about next?

America is on the path of sanctioning itself into isolation. The US is shooting itself someplace much more sensitive with all these sanctions, tariffs, and warmongering.

Soon the isolated US will ONLY have Israel, Saudi Arabia, UAE, Canada and Britain to have economic relationship with. I wonder what do these assets of the US and former British colonies can offer to one another in the form of meaningful trade? Oil, maple syrup, weapons, sand, and British tea.

espirit , 1 hour ago link

Ah, but we can **** up the debt of most countries if we want to...

Shemp 4 Victory , 58 minutes ago link

Funny how people use the term "we" to pretend that they are part of the gang.

espirit , 12 minutes ago link

Simple **** Maynard.

"We" is the ruling cabal over the U.S. peeps. And it's how (((they))) think...

HRClinton , 1 hour ago link

In 2018, Europe made a huge stink about not being bound by Trump's unilateral breach of the Iranian deal, and said it would continue regardless of US threats. But now that the threats have clearly escalated, and Washington has made it clear it won't take no for an answer, it will be interesting to see if Europe's resolve to take on Trump - especially in light of the trade war with China - has fizzled.

And there you have it. Tyler 1 nailed it.

BT , 1 hour ago link

Someone please explain to me how SWIFT system would operate if only US and a few of its vessels like Canada and Australia are in it?

delta0ne , 1 hour ago link

however obsolete the SWIFT system is there isn't any credible alternative to the old bank wire system. It's coming though. Should be an easy fix in this day and age. US doesn't want to lose control of who's wiring what and to whom, Capisce?

It's easier to replace SWIFT than replace a reserve currency the petro-dollar is today. They've tried at no avail. So long as our economy kicks ***, it will be hard to replace USD as a reserve money.

HRClinton , 1 hour ago link

The issue isn't just SWIFT. It's "access to US markets". Sayanim Pompeo is threatening them with the nuclear option: Financial MAD.

Bibbi doesn't mind.

Savvy , 1 hour ago link

Trump seems to think he's CEO of the planet and all the countries are just different departments of his corporation.

Doesn't work like that Donny.

HRClinton , 1 hour ago link

It's worse than that. Thump thinks that Bibi is Chairman of the Board, and Adelson is a Senior Board Member of a small (((Board))).

[Jun 03, 2019] Don t Fall for Pompeo s Empty Rhetoric by DANIEL LARISON

Neocon hawks are destroying US economics very effectively by supersizing military expenses and the costs of foreign wars.
Essentially Trump administration is acting in Israeli and Saudi interests in this case
Notable quotes:
"... Like many other phony administration offers to negotiate, Pompeo's proposal doesn't really include anything new or different. The administration is still insisting on the preposterous demands that the Secretary of State delivered last year. That is what Pompeo's "normal nation" reference means. In other words, the administration still expects Iranian capitulation, and they are willing to meet with Iranian officials to accept their surrender. ..."
"... Of course, this would not be a "conversation," which implies give-and-take between equals who speak to each other with respect. This would amount to something much more like a demarche where the U.S. tells Iran what it must do and then expects Iran's representatives to nod in agreement. ..."
"... Pompeo is an Iran hawk, but he is also a yes-man who seeks to curry favor with the president at all times. If he thinks that the president wants him to make diplomatic-sounding noises, he will make those noises, but it doesn't mean very much in terms of the administration's goals and means. ..."
"... Iran hawks are used to feigning interest in diplomacy while doing everything they can to undermine and poison it. As always, judge the administration by what it does and not what it happens to be saying at the moment. As long as the U.S. keeps its illegitimate sanctions in place and continues to make unrealistic and excessive demands, offers to talk are meaningless because the administration has already rendered negotiations useless. ..."
"... Pompeo is an unskilled purveyor of "smoke & mirrors" diplomacy: he thinks the world is unaware that preconditions with Iran have been in place since May 2018 when Trump unilaterally tore up the JCPOA followed by a slew of unprecedented sanctions against the Iranian people. ..."
"... Of course this statement is not for Iran, it is for the U.S. public to make the case for 'we tried' when in actuality, 'we lied'. ..."
Jun 03, 2019 | www.theamericanconservative.com

Pompeo made a statement about talks with Iran that is much less meaningful than it seems:

The United States is prepared to engage with Iran without pre-conditions about its nuclear program but needs to see the country behaving like "a normal nation", U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said on Sunday.

Iran dismissed the offer as "word-play".

Like many other phony administration offers to negotiate, Pompeo's proposal doesn't really include anything new or different. The administration is still insisting on the preposterous demands that the Secretary of State delivered last year. That is what Pompeo's "normal nation" reference means. In other words, the administration still expects Iranian capitulation, and they are willing to meet with Iranian officials to accept their surrender. The report continues:

"We are certainly prepared to have that conversation when the Iranians can prove that they want to behave like a normal nation," he told a joint news conference with his Swiss counterpart Ignazio Cassis.

Of course, this would not be a "conversation," which implies give-and-take between equals who speak to each other with respect. This would amount to something much more like a demarche where the U.S. tells Iran what it must do and then expects Iran's representatives to nod in agreement.

The Iranian government's dismissive response is to be expected. For one thing, the distrust between Washington and Tehran is immense, so Iran's government is bound to view any offer with suspicion. The Iranian government has already explained what the U.S. has to do if they want to talk about anything, and the administration has no intention of doing any of those things. As far as Iran is concerned, their nuclear program isn't up for discussion, so what would be the point of meeting with U.S. officials when the administration remains committed to its outrageous policy of economic warfare and collective punishment?

Pompeo is an Iran hawk, but he is also a yes-man who seeks to curry favor with the president at all times. If he thinks that the president wants him to make diplomatic-sounding noises, he will make those noises, but it doesn't mean very much in terms of the administration's goals and means.

Iran hawks are used to feigning interest in diplomacy while doing everything they can to undermine and poison it. As always, judge the administration by what it does and not what it happens to be saying at the moment. As long as the U.S. keeps its illegitimate sanctions in place and continues to make unrealistic and excessive demands, offers to talk are meaningless because the administration has already rendered negotiations useless.

There is an understandable temptation to seize on comments from administration officials as proof that they are giving up on a destructive and fruitless policy, but until the administration translates its rhetorical gestures into actions we should assume that the policy remains unchanged.


Procivic, says: June 3, 2019 at 2:10 am

Pompeo is an unskilled purveyor of "smoke & mirrors" diplomacy: he thinks the world is unaware that preconditions with Iran have been in place since May 2018 when Trump unilaterally tore up the JCPOA followed by a slew of unprecedented sanctions against the Iranian people.

The exodus of qualified State Department careerists can't be plugged by promoting the likes of Brian Hook.

Christian J Chuba , says: June 3, 2019 at 8:07 am

Of course this statement is not for Iran, it is for the U.S. public to make the case for 'we tried' when in actuality, 'we lied'.

[Jun 03, 2019] Trump's Iran Obsession Wrecked His Foreign Policy by DANIEL LARISON

Trump is trying to create a coalition of China Russia, India Iran and Turkey. That's an interesting foreign policy strategy,
Are we really trading Britain, Canada, Germany, and Japan for … Israel and Saudi Arabia ?
Notable quotes:
"... Ever since he embraced the Saudis and Emiratis early in his first year in office, he has been increasingly bound to them and has been eager to cater to their preferences as much as he can. His determination to be even more pro-Saudi than the average president has guaranteed that U.S. foreign policy has had less and less to do with American interests and has instead become a vehicle for promoting the ambitions of regional clients at our expense. ..."
"... He replaced them because they weren't as inclined to do the bidding of Israel and Saudi Arabia as they should have been. If you don't jump when Israel and Saudi Arabia say jump, you don't get the big campaign bucks. Transactional Trump understands that very well. Tillerson and McMaster didn't. Bolton and Pompeo not only understand it, they rely on it. ..."
"... I did not notice the name Sheldon Adelson mentioned and if we are looking for reasons for Trump's antipathy toward Iran, we need to recognize the fact of the large donations made by this ultra-Zionist to Trump's campaign. ..."
May 29, 2019 | www.theamericanconservative.com
Trump speaks at Washington rally against the Iran deal back in September 2015. Credit: Olivier Douliery/Sipa USA/Newscom

Andrew Bacevich comments on the recent escalation of tensions with Iran and what it tells us about Trump's presidency:

Again, the precise numbers are almost beside the point. In effect, Trump has drawn his own line in the sand, one that says: "We ain't leaving, no sir." His decision -- was it really his? -- is in effect a capitulation. Trump has deferred to the institutions, interests, and individuals intent on perpetuating the forever wars. Devious and diabolical and brilliant, the war party, abetted by its foreign auxiliaries, has prevailed. Trump will now surely bequeath those wars to his successor -- that's the significance of the Iran war scare.

I agree with all of this. I would just add that this was a predictable outcome for a president who chose to make antipathy to Iran the centerpiece of his foreign policy. Trump could not extricate the U.S. from the region while simultaneously pursuing a more aggressive anti-Iranian policy than his predecessor. The pursuit of that anti-Iranian policy has had a great deal to do with the failure to bring U.S. involvement in multiple unnecessary wars to an end. This was not something foisted on him by others, but has been his own doing from the beginning. When his subordinates disagreed with him about the nuclear deal as Tillerson and McMaster did, he replaced them sooner or later, and he chose even more bellicose and aggressive people to take their place. He has signed off on every aggressive anti-Iranian and pro-Saudi move he could. When faced with unprecedented Congressional opposition over the war on Yemen, he chose to use his veto for only the second time in his presidency to reject Congress' demand that he withdraw the U.S. from that war.

Ever since he embraced the Saudis and Emiratis early in his first year in office, he has been increasingly bound to them and has been eager to cater to their preferences as much as he can. His determination to be even more pro-Saudi than the average president has guaranteed that U.S. foreign policy has had less and less to do with American interests and has instead become a vehicle for promoting the ambitions of regional clients at our expense. It isn't possible to disentangle the U.S. from ceaseless war in the Middle East when the president abases himself to such an extent before despotic clients and takes their enemies as ours. The Iran obsession has defined and wrecked Trump's foreign policy, and it has led him to make most of the worst foreign policy decisions of his presidency.

Trump knows very little and had no foreign policy experience to speak of, and that made it extremely easy for hawkish advisers to fill his head with their own terrible ideas. Those advisers are undoubtedly responsible for egging Trump on to take destructive and aggressive actions, but ultimately it is Trump's responsibility for surrounding himself with people that everyone knew would give him such awful advice. No one made Trump choose Pompeo and Bolton. It was his own vanity and his preference for flattering yes-men that led him to choose such unworthy and dangerous people for important positions at the highest levels of the government. Trump doesn't have the wit, knowledge, or conviction to take U.S. foreign policy in a different, better direction, and to the extent that he occasionally has impulses that point in that direction they are just as easily canceled out and overwhelmed by even stronger, contradictory impulses that drive him toward confrontation and escalation. The war party prevailed because the president sided with them from the beginning, filled his administration with hard-liners, and fought against every effort in Congress to rein in and end our government's illegal and unauthorized involvement in the war on Yemen.


Whine Merchant, says: May 29, 2019 at 5:27 pm

Trump is not a Conservative, a Republican, a neo-con, nor even a RINO; he is a grifter, and belligerence toward Iran is where his greatest profit can be made.

Kouros , says: May 29, 2019 at 6:19 pm

Do not forget the family dinner, especially when Ivanka and Jared are present

midway , says: May 30, 2019 at 9:05 am

"When his subordinates disagreed with him about the nuclear deal as Tillerson and McMaster did, he replaced them sooner or later, and he chose even more bellicose and aggressive people to take their place."

He replaced them because they weren't as inclined to do the bidding of Israel and Saudi Arabia as they should have been. If you don't jump when Israel and Saudi Arabia say jump, you don't get the big campaign bucks. Transactional Trump understands that very well. Tillerson and McMaster didn't. Bolton and Pompeo not only understand it, they rely on it.

Sid Finster , says: May 30, 2019 at 10:47 am

@midway: I suspect without any hard evidence that Bolton and Pompeo got and keep their jobs not because of dollars and sense, but something even more pathetic.

Namely, they flatter Trump and tell him he is "tough" in private, and do nothing to upstage Trump in public.

Anon1970 , says: May 30, 2019 at 10:53 am

midway: The really big campaign bucks were made possible by the Citizens United Supreme Court decision back in 2010. The conservatives on the court then probably never realized they were giving a handful of billionaires the power to have more influence on federal politics than they had ever had before. If the US stumbles into a war with Iran in the next couple of years, the little people wearing the MAGA caps will be worse off than ever.

Myron K Hudson , says: May 30, 2019 at 1:16 pm

"His determination to be even more pro-Saudi than the average president has guaranteed that U.S. foreign policy has had less and less to do with American interests and has instead become a vehicle for promoting the ambitions of regional clients at our expense."

Promoting the ambitions of regional clients at our expense it couldn't be put more clearly than that. An even greater shame: this isn't part of some "great game"; we're led by a man who wants to be seen as tough by men he sees as tough.

SteveK9 , says: May 31, 2019 at 11:28 am

I did not notice the name Sheldon Adelson mentioned and if we are looking for reasons for Trump's antipathy toward Iran, we need to recognize the fact of the large donations made by this ultra-Zionist to Trump's campaign.

[Jun 03, 2019] Bolton Brazenly Lies About Iran Again by DANIEL LARISON

Notable quotes:
"... From what I have read, including excerpts of JCPOA, it seems that Iran's move to restart some low level enrichment is captured in the agreement as something that Iran could do if the other party(ies) are in breach of the agreement. And at this time, the US is not a party any longer and the EU is in breach by stopping any economic intercourse with Iran. ..."
"... This should be reiterated again and again, because just mentioning that Iran unilaterally is starting enrichment puts a target on their back especially in the United States of Amnesia, while they are still just doing only what is prescribed by the JCPOA. ..."
"... Bolton's lying goes with his broad contempt for the American people. He treats us like contemptible sheep, he lies to us, and then he tries to manipulate Trump into sending our sons and daughters to fight wars for his foreign buddies. ..."
"... It is indeed remarkable in a very bad way that Bolton has any credibility to speak on issues. He has a very long track record of lie after lie after lie, going back to the build up for Iraq war. Indeed, he has never acknowledged that Iraq war a monumental tragedy. ..."
May 29, 2019 | www.theamericanconservative.com

John Bolton repeats one of the Trump administration's biggest and most important lies:

Donald Trump's national security adviser said Wednesday there was "no reason" for Iran to back out of its nuclear deal with world powers other than to seek atomic weapons, a year after the U.S. president unilaterally withdrew America from the accord.

Bolton and other administration officials have promoted the lie that Iran seeks nuclear weapons for months. Unfortunately, members of Congress and the press have largely failed to call out these lies for what they are. There is no evidence to support the administration's claims, and there is overwhelming evidence that they are wrong, but if they can get away with saying these things without being challenged they may not need evidence to get the crisis that Bolton and others like him want.

In this case, the AP story just relays Bolton's false and misleading statements as if they should be taken seriously, and their headline trumpets Bolton's dishonest insinuations as if they were credible. This is an unfortunate case of choosing the sensationalist, eye-catching headline that misinforms the public on a very important issue. Bolton's latest remarks are especially pernicious because they use Iran's modest reactions to Trump administration sanctions as evidence of Iran's imaginary intent to acquire weapons. The U.S. has been trying to push Iran to abandon the deal for more than a year, and at the first sign that Iran begins to reduce its compliance in order to push back against the administration's outrageous economic warfare Bolton tries to misrepresent it as proof that they seek nuclear weapons. Don't fall for it, and don't trust anything Bolton says. Not only does he have a record of distorting and manipulating intelligence to suit his purposes, but his longstanding desire for regime change and his ties to the Mujahideen-e Khalq (MEK) make him an exceptionally unreliable person when it comes to any and all claims about the Iranian government.

The story provides some context, but still fails to challenge Bolton's assertions:

Bolton said that without more nuclear power plants, it made no sense for Iran to stockpile more low-enriched uranium as it now plans to do. But the U.S. also earlier cut off Iran's ability to sell its uranium to Russia in exchange for unprocessed yellow-cake uranium [bold mine-DK].

Iran has set a July 7 deadline for Europe to offer better terms to the unraveling nuclear deal, otherwise it will resume enrichment closer to weapons level. Bolton declined to say what the U.S. would do in response to that.

"There's no reason for them to do (higher enrichment) unless it is to reduce the breakout time to nuclear weapons," Bolton said.

Earlier this year, the Trump administration ended the sanctions waivers that enabled Iran to ship its excess low-enriched uranium out of the country. They made it practically impossible for Iran to do what they have been reliably doing for years, and now Bolton blames Iran for the consequences of administration actions. The administration has deliberately put Iran in a bind so that they either give up the enrichment that they are entitled to do under the JCPOA or exceed the restrictions on their stockpile so that the U.S. can then accuse them of a violation. Left out in all of this is that the U.S. is no longer a party to the deal and violated all of its commitments more than a year ago. Iran has patiently remained in compliance while the only party to breach the agreement desperately hunts for a pretext to accuse them of some minor infraction.

Iran's record of full compliance with the JCPOA for more than three years hasn't mattered to Bolton and his allies in the slightest, and they have had no problem reneging on U.S. commitments, but now the same ideologues that have wanted to destroy the deal from the start insist on treating the deal's restrictions as sacrosanct. These same people have worked to engineer a situation in which Iran may end up stockpiling more low-enriched uranium than they are supposed to have, and then seize on the situation they created to spread lies about Iran's desire for nukes. It's all so obviously being done in bad faith, but then that is what we have come to expect from Iran hawks and opponents of the nuclear deal. Don't let them get away with it.

The reason that Iran is threatening to enrich its uranium to a higher level is that the U.S. has been relentlessly sanctioning them despite their total compliance with the terms of the JCPOA. The Trump administration has done all it could to deny Iran the benefits of the deal, and then Bolton has the gall to say that they have no other reason to reduce their compliance. Of course Iran does have another reason, and that is to put pressure on the other remaining parties to the deal to find a way to get Iran the benefits it was promised. It is a small step taken in response to the administration's own destructive policy, and it is not evidence of anything else. Iran is not seeking nuclear weapons, and it is grossly irresponsible to treat unfounded administration claims about this as anything other than propaganda and lies.


Kouros, says: May 29, 2019 at 10:58 am

From what I have read, including excerpts of JCPOA, it seems that Iran's move to restart some low level enrichment is captured in the agreement as something that Iran could do if the other party(ies) are in breach of the agreement. And at this time, the US is not a party any longer and the EU is in breach by stopping any economic intercourse with Iran.

This should be reiterated again and again, because just mentioning that Iran unilaterally is starting enrichment puts a target on their back especially in the United States of Amnesia, while they are still just doing only what is prescribed by the JCPOA.

Braced , says: May 29, 2019 at 3:24 pm

Bolton's lying goes with his broad contempt for the American people. He treats us like contemptible sheep, he lies to us, and then he tries to manipulate Trump into sending our sons and daughters to fight wars for his foreign buddies.

Taras 77 , says: May 29, 2019 at 3:56 pm

It is indeed remarkable in a very bad way that Bolton has any credibility to speak on issues. He has a very long track record of lie after lie after lie, going back to the build up for Iraq war. Indeed, he has never acknowledged that Iraq war a monumental tragedy.

I think NK has it right to assert that Bolton is a defective human product.

But there he is stacking intell in trump's ear.

[Jun 03, 2019] HARPER- POMPEO PRONOUNCES KUSHNER PLAN DOA

Notable quotes:
"... Pompeo has shown some unexpected political savvy by distancing himself from the doomed "peace plan," which appears to be little more than a scheme to buy Palestinian capitulation through a combination of promises of Arab money and political strong-arming from the Gulf States and Israel. ..."
Jun 03, 2019 | turcopolier.typepad.com

On May 28, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo was in New York City for a closed-door meeting with the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations. In remarks that were covertly recorded and passed along to the Washington Post, Pompeo effectively declared that the Middle East peace plan conjured by First Son-in-Law Jared Kushner was a non-starter and would be rejected by most parties.

Instead of the "deal of the century" touted by President Donald Trump, Pompeo conceded that the peace scheme was a losing proposition. "I get why people think this is a deal that only Israel could love. I understand the perception of that. I just hope everyone will give the space to listen and settle in a bit." Pompeo continued his blunt remarks: "I don't want to call it failing. Call it whatever. I fail a lot, so it's not about using a word like that."

Pompeo admitted that the State Department is giving a good deal of attention to what to do next if the Kushner Plan flops.

Until Prime Minister-elect Benjamin Netanyahu failed to put together a majority cabinet this week and had to call snap elections for September, it had been expected that the long-awaited Kushner Plan would be rolled out this month. Now the launch date is delayed until late September or early October after a new Israeli government is formed and sworn in.

Pompeo has shown some unexpected political savvy by distancing himself from the doomed "peace plan," which appears to be little more than a scheme to buy Palestinian capitulation through a combination of promises of Arab money and political strong-arming from the Gulf States and Israel.

[Jun 02, 2019] Trump 2020

Notable quotes:
"... Trump is Gambino family, Hillary (and Comey, et al) are Genoveses. All of them are sleaze, criminal, deep state. Samo-samo. Just one pile of dirt fighting another pile of dirt. ..."
Jun 02, 2019 | www.zerohedge.com

sarz , 23 hours ago link

Trump has always had divided loyalties and has always talked out of two sides of his mouth. From day one the actual decision has been to be top *** rather than American. Israel and Goldman Sachs. Israel counts for far more with him than America. If he has to choose which Jews he has a problem. Then he goes for Zionists over banksters. It's when he can serve both with the same stroke that he's in his element. Like recognizing Golan as Israel, for both Bibi and Rothschilds, as land as as oil.

Trump is a *** in everything except the accident of his Scot Presbyterian mother. His father a Zionist ***. His first two wives and possibly his third, Jews. Possibly all his children, definitely all but one, Jews. His daughter Ivanka born a *** and then a fake convert to Judaism. To fake the Deplorables.

Trump is revelling in playing top ***, fighting wars for the Jews, while suckers write articles like this about his antiwar heart.

BankSurfyMan , 23 hours ago link

Trump 2020

SHsparx , 1 day ago link

Oh please stfu. Poor anti-war Trump being helplessly entangled in wars by the neocons he doesn't want to. He's the one that picked them lol. He's the one that openly admits he's beholden to Israel and the Saudis. He's the one that openly vowed during election he'd increase war machine spending. No one's making him do anything. He acts like he's antiwar with his words only to make chumps think he's anti-war.

Gonzogal , 1 day ago link

Comment from another ZHer re Trump:

"Has anyone noticed the neat escape-responsibility manoeuvre Trump uses? Past presidents have always consulted with their advisors and cabinet and presented a united front. Trump now deflects responsibility by investing his appointees with, evidently, independent powers which only he curtails. His cabinet apparently works independently from him. In some case, when necessary, they are directly responsible to him. In other cases, where unnecessary, they go "off the plantation" and make their own decisions...which, for some reason, he can't overrule. Pretty nifty."

SHsparx , 1 day ago link

Classic case of playing good cop/bad cop. Trump is the "good cop" so he can keep pacifying his idiot cult following, like the author of this article, and get reelected.

HRClinton , 15 hours ago link

Trump's behavior is easy to explain if you stick to basics. One of them is the Lincoln model of political deception:

"...and you can fool some of the people ALL of the time"

I believe that they are also referred to as the Dumbest Goyim.

The Persistent Vegetable , 1 day ago link

So there are two things I agree trump on and this is one of them. But even here his thought process doesn't make sense. If you're going to fight a war mongering bureaucracy why in the hell do you appoint war mongers as Sec of state and national security advisor? He's better off appointing a couple of ***** dems than these assholes. He ensures those agencies will fight him to the bitter end. He has yet to appoint one person who shares his philosophy and I'm sure they're out there.

Gonzogal , 1 day ago link

He has yet to appoint one person who shares his philosophy and I'm sure they're out there

His philosophy is the SAME as the neocons he has appointed. People didnt listen to what he said during the 2016 campaign:

https://www.haaretz.com/world-news/MAGAZINE-where-does-donald-trump-stand-on-israel-1.5384623

https://www.businessinsider.com/trump-israel-campaign-office-2016-9

"Why can't we use nuclear weapons?"

"Who knows?" -- when asked if, as president, he would start a war with China , New York Times interview, March 25, 2016

"When Iran, when they circle our beautiful destroyers with their little boats, and they make gestures at our people that they shouldn't be allowed to make, they will be shot out of the water." -- threatening to go to war with Iran over rude hand gestures, Pensacola, Florida, Sept. 9, 2016

"This is the Trump theory on war. But I'm good at war. I've had a lot of wars of my own. I'm really good at war. I love war in a certain way. But only when we win." Fort Dodge, Iowa, Nov. 12, 2015

Demeter55 , 1 day ago link

He appointed these three amigos under orders from the only person who supports him. And now he lets them have enough rope to hang themselves, really make it obvious that they are incompetent, and then he can fire them and start fresh in 2020. Without alienating his support/money source.

All the so-called competent people turned up their noses at Trump, declining appointment to his administration. **** them! They obviously aren't as competent nor as patriotic as they thought they were. They have disqualified themselves, and good riddance!

The first truly competent, if reluctant appointee is Bill Barr. He does a good job, and some other, equally competent and country-loving personalities will come out of the crowd.

The only reason Betsy DeVos, the most incompetent Cabinet official in decades, hasn't been pink-slipped is her mercenary brother and her husband's Amway fortune. She needs to be encouraged out of office in 2020, if not before.

HRClinton , 15 hours ago link

Never forget that the Biggest Patriot is the Biggest Idiot . A bit of a malleable fool and thus a Useful Tool.

It takes more than physical bravery and allegiance to be a "Patriot".

It also takes a certain amount of (1)willful blindness , (2) moral hypocrisy and (3) need to submit to a well-organised hierarchy . Do you think that this country is lacking in such people?

TheRapture , 1 day ago link

Why people keep making excuses for Trump is beyond me.

Evaluate Trump not on hot air, but on action. Based on hot air Trump is completely inconsistent. Based on actual behavior Trump is a very consistent Israel-First neocon warmonger, and an extremely crude and corrupt one at that.

Wahooo , 1 day ago link

You nailed it. BTW, his cult makes excuses for him because it validates their original vote and all the justifications they've had over time.

As I've always said, had you asked any American 10 years ago if they thought Trump would be a good president, the answer would have been a unanimous "Are you ******* kidding? He'll no!"

ConanTheContrarian1 , 1 day ago link

As a mostly full-fledged member of his "cult", let me explain. Trump has the entirety of the Democrat party, half the Republican, and 2/3 of the judiciary against him. I'm amazed he's done as well as he has. He's canned a large number of sleazebags in the FBI, and many other functionaries in government suddenly decided they want to retire.

Just like an allstar offensive player lined up against an allstar defensive player will win some and lose some, so it is with Trump. You're full of ****.

Gonzogal , 1 day ago link

You cant have it both ways. As of his inauguration he became Commander in Chief, WITH ALL THE RESPONSIBILITY THAT GOES WITH THAT TITLE.

He is either President of the US or he is not, there is NO grey area. He even said that he is "responsible for what happens in the US."

monty42 , 1 day ago link

The executive is only to act as Commander in Chief, raising armies and fighting wars, if the Legislature declares war. As it stands, the executive is a military despot, maintaining a standing armed force spread across the world and waging war without declaration or justification.

It's a self insulated circle, where those volunteering swear an oath to uphold the Constitution and defend it, but in reality they "just follow orders" regardless of how blatantly unconstitutional the whole process and D.C. regime is.

Yogapith , 1 day ago link

Most immature comment of the week. Thats the theory in a beautiful ideal world. But the reality is that very powerful entrenched interests are at play.

TheRapture , 1 day ago link

He's canned a large number of sleazebags in the FBI

The only deep state sleazebags fired that I can see were FBI execs involved in the coup against Trump. Trump's motive was not justice, it was vengeance and self-defense. You call that a house-cleaning?

Trump is Gambino family, Hillary (and Comey, et al) are Genoveses. All of them are sleaze, criminal, deep state. Samo-samo. Just one pile of dirt fighting another pile of dirt.

HRClinton , 15 hours ago link

Evaluate Trump not on hot air, but on action. Based on hot air Trump is completely inconsistent. Based on actual behavior Trump is a very consistent Israel-First neocon warmonger, and an extremely crude and corrupt one at that.

One of the early tells was that he's a philanderer, an adulterer, a cheapskate who doesn't pay his contractors, but fosters this image of philanthropy, and who found out that you can't *** Jewish bankers and get away with it. Unless you up the ante and tell them that you'll further their political agenda if they put him in the WH.

It's not difficult to analyze Trump, if you keep your own emotional needs out of it, and just look at the facts and behaviors. If you can't, then it says more about you than about Trump. Maybe people with a specific type of defect in their moral compass identify with the same defect in Trump's? It would explain a lot.

systemsplanet , 13 hours ago link

Who knows if Trump would have made a really great president. The Leftist denied Trump, and all Americans who voted for him, a chance to MAGA.

One thing is for certain, a large number of Americans want pay back for

it's a never ending list of reasons for millions of Patriots to get even.

Gonzogal , 1 day ago link

When will Americans stop shifting the blame for TRUMPS DECISIONS onto something/someone else????

HE HAS THE FINAL WORD. He even said so: " I am responsible for what happens in the United States."

Yogapith , 1 day ago link

Ideally. Reality is more complex and (((difficult))) unfortunately.

HRClinton , 14 hours ago link

Trump the ultimate showman and conman:

He pretends that he has a military background, but doesn't . Being shipped off to a Mil academy doesn't count, even if it's beneficial to a wild child.

He pretended to pay his bills, but doesn't . The list of Gypped/Jewed/Screwed contractors is a mile long, as is the list of bankers whom he forced into wild refinance, by using Bankruptcy laws as a weapon.

He pretended to be a faithful husband, but wasn't . Two of his 3 marriages ended because of adultery. He loves hot sluts who stroke his ego even better than his ****.

He pretended to look after the interests of Main St, but hasn't . Looking after Bibi & The Likudniks doesn't count, nor should Wall St sharks.

He pretended to seek true Justice, but hasn't . Why is Hillary & The Gang still free? Why did he disavow Assange?

He pretended to ramp down imperialism , but hasn't. He's ramped it UP.

He pretended to "Build the Wall", but hasn't . The Wall is the Fake Rabbit at the Greyhound races: Useful to get the stupid dogs to perform on command.

He pretended to mend fences with Russia, but hasn't . "Russiagate" has become a very useful ploy and cover to satisfy the MIC and Big Oil.

With all this overwhelming evidence, of people can't see him as he truly is, then the ONLY explanation left is that they are mentally deficient, psychologically defective, and/or in on (benefit from) his network of scams.

Lavrov , 1 day ago link

Why we did NOT have ww3 is beyond me in Syria.. Only once the GLOVES came off It happen the last time I wrote this it was taken OFF immediately.. A peace deal was sign Derazor The US Air Force came and Slaughter about 100 Syrian Army soldiers Apparentley There were 11 Russians soldiers Kill too.

This is a TRUE story The communication lines WERE OPEN The Russians were SCREAMING on the HOT phone to STOP. They never responded just kept bombing.

This gets INTERESTING now.. Where are the ORDERS coming from to the US air force to BOMB It was coming from Allepo. PUTIN order BOMB the HEAD QUARTERS of the COMMAND CENTRE giving these orders. 3 BUNKER BUSTER BOMBS came a FLYING in.

Under ground head quarters was DESTROY. There were roughly 30 military officers in that BUNKER EVAPORATED 5 mossad agents 5 US CIA agents 10 Saudi a few from Britan what ever. It was in ALL the NEWS PAPERS in Russia right across the Middle east Al Jezerra on the NEWS.

Not a word mention in ISRAHELL and JUSA. So if there was going to be WW3 that would of been the time. Thank God better heads prevail. Look like PUTIN threw down the gauntlet.

Lavrov , 1 day ago link

I forgot after the US stop bombing Derazor ******* IMMEDIATELY ISIS attack ******* IMMEDIATELY No that wasn't plan. Just a coinincidence yeah that's it

Let it Go , 1 day ago link

Trump did not come across as a warmonger during the presidential campaign. When America put Trump in office many of us were seeking a world where the leadership in Washington would focus on bringing both jobs and money home rather than squandering it on foreign wars.

What has been happening in Washington is proof that the power of the swamp is very resilient and may not be able to be drained. A strong case can be made that President Trump has become a hostage of those occupying the very swamp he promised to drain. More on this in the article below.

http://America Did Not Vote For More Death And Destruction!html

Gonzogal , 1 day ago link

from 2016 campaign:

https://www.haaretz.com/world-news/MAGAZINE-where-does-donald-trump-stand-on-israel-1.5384623

https://www.businessinsider.com/trump-israel-campaign-office-2016-9

"Why can't we use nuclear weapons?"

"Who knows?" -- when asked if, as president, he would start a war with China , New York Times interview, March 25, 2016

"When Iran, when they circle our beautiful destroyers with their little boats, and they make gestures at our people that they shouldn't be allowed to make, they will be shot out of the water." -- threatening to go to war with Iran over rude hand gestures, Pensacola, Florida, Sept. 9, 2016

"This is the Trump theory on war. But I'm good at war. I've had a lot of wars of my own. I'm really good at war. I love war in a certain way. But only when we win." Fort Dodge, Iowa, Nov. 12, 2015

Wahooo , 1 day ago link

All those folks are war mongers. You don't get into the Club unless you are.

Gonzogal , 1 day ago link

https://israeltodaynews.blogspot.com/2019/02/donald-trump-converted-to-judaism-two-years-ago.html

Yogapith , 1 day ago link

My opinion is that it will take a generation to clean it.

Boogity , 1 day ago link

Inquiring minds want to know if Jared let Orange grab Ivanka's ***** after attacking Syria.

motherjones , 1 day ago link

Both parties are War Parties, and Trump was "broke" long before he moved into the White House.

MrButtoMcFarty , 1 day ago link

Only six more years snowflakes!

KEEP AMERICA GREAT!

666D Chess , 1 day ago link

LOL. Did you mean keep Israel great?

Boogity , 1 day ago link

I bet you're going to be stylin' in that little red MIGA Yamaka during the 2020 campaign

hairy nose wombat , 1 day ago link

with or without frump... the U.S. is full-on fucked.

quidam101 , 1 day ago link

The bureaucrats run the government , not the elected politicians who come and go and spend more time collecting money to be reelected than ruling. All the democrat bureaucrats are against him what is he left with? The warmongers republicans of the Bush Reagan era.

[Jun 01, 2019] Mathilde Krim and USS Liberty coverup

Jun 01, 2019 | turcopolier.typepad.com

Artemesia -> Kelly Hall... , 31 May 2019 at 04:19 PM

Several years ago a small group gathered at Arlington Cemetery with relatives and survivors of Israel's attack on the USS Liberty, an event that killed 34 members of US military.
A few days ago, a Christian Evangelical network, TruNews, broadcast a two-part series on that event, including an interview with a survivor of the attack.
https://www.trunews.com/stream/six-day-war-massacre-uss-liberty-veterans-reveal-truth-about-israeli-attack-part-1

Lyndon Johnson ordered rescue planes to abort their rescue mission. He explained that he "did not want to embarrass an ally."
Evidence has surfaced that at the time of LBJ's stand-down order, Mathilde Krim, wife of a Hollywood film executive and major Democratic donor, was an overnight guest in LBJ's White House. According to an article at the time of Krim's death, it was an 'open secret' that LBJ and Krim were lovers.

https://mondoweiss.net/2018/01/secret-life-mathilde/

LBJ was not impeached for either of these "dishonorable" acts.

Kelly Hall, how does your list of Trump's peccadilloes compare to LBJ abandoning a US Navy vessel and its crew when they were attacked, killed, life-boats strafed, etc.?

ex-PFC Chuck -> Artemesia... , 31 May 2019 at 04:19 PM

Artemesia,IIRC Adm. John McCain II was instrumental in orchestrating the USS Liberty coverup.

[May 31, 2019] Trump's Iran Obsession Wrecked His Foreign Policy by DANIEL LARISON

Notable quotes:
"... Devious and diabolical and brilliant, the war party, abetted by its foreign auxiliaries, has prevailed. Trump will now surely bequeath those wars to his successor -- that's the significance of the Iran war scare. ..."
"... "When his subordinates disagreed with him about the nuclear deal as Tillerson and McMaster did, he replaced them sooner or later, and he chose even more bellicose and aggressive people to take their place." ..."
"... He replaced them because they weren't as inclined to do the bidding of Israel and Saudi Arabia as they should have been. If you don't jump when Israel and Saudi Arabia say jump, you don't get the big campaign bucks. Transactional Trump understands that very well. Tillerson and McMaster didn't. Bolton and Pompeo not only understand it, they rely on it. ..."
"... "His determination to be even more pro-Saudi than the average president has guaranteed that U.S. foreign policy has had less and less to do with American interests and has instead become a vehicle for promoting the ambitions of regional clients at our expense." ..."
"... I did not notice the name Sheldon Adelson mentioned and if we are looking for reasons for Trump's antipathy toward Iran, we need to recognize the fact of the large donations made by this ultra-Zionist to Trump's campaign. ..."
May 29, 2019 | www.theamericanconservative.com

Andrew Bacevich comments on the recent escalation of tensions with Iran and what it tells us about Trump's presidency:

Again, the precise numbers are almost beside the point. In effect, Trump has drawn his own line in the sand, one that says: "We ain't leaving, no sir." His decision -- was it really his? -- is in effect a capitulation. Trump has deferred to the institutions, interests, and individuals intent on perpetuating the forever wars. Devious and diabolical and brilliant, the war party, abetted by its foreign auxiliaries, has prevailed. Trump will now surely bequeath those wars to his successor -- that's the significance of the Iran war scare.

I agree with all of this. I would just add that this was a predictable outcome for a president who chose to make antipathy to Iran the centerpiece of his foreign policy. Trump could not extricate the U.S. from the region while simultaneously pursuing a more aggressive anti-Iranian policy than his predecessor. The pursuit of that anti-Iranian policy has had a great deal to do with the failure to bring U.S. involvement in multiple unnecessary wars to an end. This was not something foisted on him by others, but has been his own doing from the beginning. When his subordinates disagreed with him about the nuclear deal as Tillerson and McMaster did, he replaced them sooner or later, and he chose even more bellicose and aggressive people to take their place. He has signed off on every aggressive anti-Iranian and pro-Saudi move he could. When faced with unprecedented Congressional opposition over the war on Yemen, he chose to use his veto for only the second time in his presidency to reject Congress' demand that he withdraw the U.S. from that war.

Ever since he embraced the Saudis and Emiratis early in his first year in office, he has been increasingly bound to them and has been eager to cater to their preferences as much as he can. His determination to be even more pro-Saudi than the average president has guaranteed that U.S. foreign policy has had less and less to do with American interests and has instead become a vehicle for promoting the ambitions of regional clients at our expense. It isn't possible to disentangle the U.S. from ceaseless war in the Middle East when the president abases himself to such an extent before despotic clients and takes their enemies as ours. The Iran obsession has defined and wrecked Trump's foreign policy, and it has led him to make most of the worst foreign policy decisions of his presidency.

Trump knows very little and had no foreign policy experience to speak of, and that made it extremely easy for hawkish advisers to fill his head with their own terrible ideas. Those advisers are undoubtedly responsible for egging Trump on to take destructive and aggressive actions, but ultimately it is Trump's responsibility for surrounding himself with people that everyone knew would give him such awful advice. No one made Trump choose Pompeo and Bolton. It was his own vanity and his preference for flattering yes-men that led him to choose such unworthy and dangerous people for important positions at the highest levels of the government. Trump doesn't have the wit, knowledge, or conviction to take U.S. foreign policy in a different, better direction, and to the extent that he occasionally has impulses that point in that direction they are just as easily canceled out and overwhelmed by even stronger, contradictory impulses that drive him toward confrontation and escalation. The war party prevailed because the president sided with them from the beginning, filled his administration with hard-liners, and fought against every effort in Congress to rein in and end our government's illegal and unauthorized involvement in the war on Yemen.


Whine Merchant , says: May 29, 2019 at 5:27 pm

Trump is not a Conservative, a Republican, a neo-con, nor even a RINO; he is a grifter, and belligerence toward Iran is where his greatest profit can be made.

Kouros , says: May 29, 2019 at 6:19 pm

Do not forget the family dinner, especially when Ivanka and Jared are present

midway , says: May 30, 2019 at 9:05 am

"When his subordinates disagreed with him about the nuclear deal as Tillerson and McMaster did, he replaced them sooner or later, and he chose even more bellicose and aggressive people to take their place."

He replaced them because they weren't as inclined to do the bidding of Israel and Saudi Arabia as they should have been. If you don't jump when Israel and Saudi Arabia say jump, you don't get the big campaign bucks. Transactional Trump understands that very well. Tillerson and McMaster didn't. Bolton and Pompeo not only understand it, they rely on it.

Sid Finster , says: May 30, 2019 at 10:47 am

@midway: I suspect without any hard evidence that Bolton and Pompeo got and keep their jobs not because of dollars and sense, but something even more pathetic.

Namely, they flatter Trump and tell him he is "tough" in private, and do nothing to upstage Trump in public.

Anon1970 , says: May 30, 2019 at 10:53 am

midway: The really big campaign bucks were made possible by the Citizens United Supreme Court decision back in 2010. The conservatives on the court then probably never realized they were giving a handful of billionaires the power to have more influence on federal politics than they had ever had before. If the US stumbles into a war with Iran in the next couple of years, the little people wearing the MAGA caps will be worse off than ever.

Myron K Hudson , says: May 30, 2019 at 1:16 pm

"His determination to be even more pro-Saudi than the average president has guaranteed that U.S. foreign policy has had less and less to do with American interests and has instead become a vehicle for promoting the ambitions of regional clients at our expense."

Promoting the ambitions of regional clients at our expense it couldn't be put more clearly than that. An even greater shame: this isn't part of some "great game"; we're led by a man who wants to be seen as tough by men he sees as tough.

SteveK9 , says: May 31, 2019 at 11:28 am

I did not notice the name Sheldon Adelson mentioned and if we are looking for reasons for Trump's antipathy toward Iran, we need to recognize the fact of the large donations made by this ultra-Zionist to Trump's campaign.

[May 31, 2019] Jared Packs Unicorns and Rainbows For Mideast Trip by Ilana Mercer

Notable quotes:
"... For one, the Arabs know that Ivanka is calling the shots -- and that the president's fashion-focused daughter is behind the branding of the sexually androgynous, intellectually inchoate production that is Jared Kushner. If you think that's something Arabs respect, you don't know Shiite from Shinola . ..."
"... Then there's Bibi Netanyahu's ingenious, Israel First tactics. You have to be a special kind of dumb -- Jared and Ivanka dumb -- to imagine you can present Bibi with a plan to fix his part of the world. The Israeli prime minister will make the right noises and will have Jared for breakfast. ..."
"... As the Economist noted derisively -- its writers, too, are radicals in the mold of Jared and Ivanka -- Netanyahu is no radical. He is a reactionary nationalist. Temperamentally conservative," and "wary of change," as all true conservatives ought to be, Netanyahu "governs as if Israel needs no change." The Israeli prime minister has even passed nation-state legislation consecrating Israel as the home of the Jewish people. ..."
"... In case you're unfamiliar with Bibi's base -- supporters of Likud since the party's inception -- they are, "Voters from conservative religious and working-class backgrounds, Russian-speaking immigrants and Mizrahi Jews (who are descended from immigrants from the Arab world)." The political equivalent of Trump's deplorables. ..."
"... "We will forever live by the sword." Bibi's words in 2015. ..."
May 31, 2019 | www.unz.com

... ... ...

Let us begin with our debutant's Middle East peace plan, the thing his father-in-law calls "the deal of the century."

The notion of Jared solving the Israeli-Palestinian vexation is laughable, perhaps the dumbest thing ever. You just know this is a vain Ivanka move to brand the region and add it to her CV. (Ivanka, to those who don't know, is intent on riding to the presidency herself on her father's coattails.)

The Arabs slated to partake in the Kushner summit, Bahraini, Saudi and Emirati participants, are likely laughing the hardest.

For one, the Arabs know that Ivanka is calling the shots -- and that the president's fashion-focused daughter is behind the branding of the sexually androgynous, intellectually inchoate production that is Jared Kushner. If you think that's something Arabs respect, you don't know Shiite from Shinola .

Wily Arabs are hip to White House dynamics. They know who's running the West Wing and who to flatter. Some in the region have even given Donald Trump a dubious honorific , Abu Ivanka al-Amriki. Being known as "father of Ivanka the American" is, of course, no honor in the muscular, manly Middle East.

The timing of the Kushner peace plan is especially asinine. For all the upheaval in the region, the Palestinian Problem has nevertheless dropped off the geopolitical radar as an urgent matter to resolve.

For better or for worse, the two sides are locked in a deadly, tightly choreographed dance. The Palestinians rise in frustration and fury; the Israelis respond with overwhelming force. The world then offers-up perfunctory sympathy for the Palestinians. Everybody moves on.

It's just the way it is. The world has become desensitized to the plight of the Palestinians.

Take the Economist -- a liberal, pro-Palestinian, most excellent weekly. Its editors cogitated but briefly over the Israeli army's last use of excessive force against the M.O.P.E (Most Oppressed People Ever), concluding nonchalantly that, "Every state has a right to defend its borders." "It is time for Palestinians to take up genuine non-violence."

In other words, " Grow up, Palestinians. The stone-throwing was cute when your struggle was in its infancy ."

Understandably, the Palestinians will have no truck with the Trump administration.

Then there's Bibi Netanyahu's ingenious, Israel First tactics. You have to be a special kind of dumb -- Jared and Ivanka dumb -- to imagine you can present Bibi with a plan to fix his part of the world. The Israeli prime minister will make the right noises and will have Jared for breakfast.

Netanyahu has been busy befriending " once hostile neighbors and has gained the respect of world leaders ." Like himself, his new friends (the murderous Saudi regime is among them) don't seem to care much that Israel's "supposedly temporary occupation [of 4.5 million Palestinians] has become permanent conquest."

Don't blame me for dishing Middle Eastern realpolitik. These are just the facts and the deductions therefrom.

By the Economist's telling , Mr. Netanyahu's strategy toward the Palestinians is a finely honed "anti-solutionism." Netanyahu "has sought to convince Israelis that the conflict can be managed, if the right people are put in charge of managing it, and thus need not be solved."

From experience, Netanyahu knows that an "anti-solutionism" puts his army and him in control, to better deliver on the security needs of the Israelis. This makes Bibi even more of a mystery to the self-aggrandizing Kushners. After all, they are not acting in America's self-interest. A provincial leader who does just that is anathema to the mindset dominant in America.

Like him or not, the conservative, patriotic Bibi will not allow Jared Kushner to steer Israel in a radical direction. Instead, Bibi will likely let The American rattle on about radical change (which he, Jared, will not have to live through), and will quietly ignore him in favor of maintaining the safer status quo.

You see, the Israeli prime minister is a grizzled old warrior -- and a true populist, the kind that builds walls to protect his people and passes laws to safeguard their ancient patrimony.

Netanyahu and his new Sunni partners will make polite noises and then shrug off this Middle-East plan with a hearty laugh and some good arak , behind Jared's slender, sylphlike back.

As the Economist noted derisively -- its writers, too, are radicals in the mold of Jared and Ivanka -- Netanyahu is no radical. He is a reactionary nationalist. Temperamentally conservative," and "wary of change," as all true conservatives ought to be, Netanyahu "governs as if Israel needs no change." The Israeli prime minister has even passed nation-state legislation consecrating Israel as the home of the Jewish people.

But by golly, Bibi will give the first-couple-in-waiting good hospitality -- leading Ivanka and her poodle to "think" they succeeded in plastering their brand on the region. Then he'll send Ivanka's emissary packing, to be celebrated by his clueless American fans.

And the region will return to its old ways.

Bibi, moreover, reads his voters well. The appetite for the charade that are the Israeli-Palestinians peace talks has diminished. "The percentage of Israelis favoring talks with the Palestinians has dropped from over 70 percent to closer to 50 percent over the past decade. Among Mr. Netanyahu's supporters it is 30 percent."

In case you're unfamiliar with Bibi's base -- supporters of Likud since the party's inception -- they are, "Voters from conservative religious and working-class backgrounds, Russian-speaking immigrants and Mizrahi Jews (who are descended from immigrants from the Arab world)." The political equivalent of Trump's deplorables.

To sum, "should it ever to arrive," Mr. and Mrs. Kushner's peace plan "will be dead on arrival."

Americans like Jared and Ivanka don't know the past and show little respect for it. Netanyahu, however, understands history and what it portends for the future. "Because the Palestinian issue cannot be solved," Bibi's statecraft entails preparing his people for a reality they understand all too well:

"We will forever live by the sword." Bibi's words in 2015.

Let us wrap-up on a more mirthful note. Here's some stuff our oracular Mr. Jared has said about rainbows and unicorns in the Middle East: "Progress could 'look like a lot of different things." "Success 'can look like an agreement, it can look like a discussion, it could lead to closer cooperation, maybe resolve a couple of issues."

Now that's deep. Reality TV deep.

Ilana Mercer has been writing a weekly, paleolibertarian column since 1999. She is the author of Into the Cannibal's Pot: Lessons for America From Post-Apartheid South Africa (2011) & The Trump Revolution: The Donald's Creative Destruction Deconstructed " (June, 2016). She's on Twitter , Facebook , Gab & YouTube


Exile , says: May 31, 2019 at 2:06 am GMT

Solid assessment. Bibi’s ruthlessness in pursuit of his people’s interests is something I wish my people’s leaders would emulate. Instead, they buy into the Israeli gaslighting and flattery and beclown themselves with paens to “Judeo-Christianity,” “America’s greatest ally,” and “the ME’s only democracy.”

It’s debatable whether Bibi’s “forever war” is in fact in the best interests of Israeli Jews, but no one can credibly claim he’s a tool of foreign powers.

The Empire, on the other hand, is most definitely in thrall to a people whose American diaspora makes up less than 3% of its population.

Fidelios Automata , says: May 31, 2019 at 4:12 am GMT

I take issue with Mercer’s characterization of The Economist as “excellent.” It may have been at one time. I dropped my subscription decades ago when I realized it was a globalist propaganda rag.

Thinker , says: May 31, 2019 at 4:25 am GMT

I wish Trump would just keep his moron SIL on Israel-Palestinian affairs only. Who cares if he F’s it all up. It’d be no different from where it was 10, 20, 50 years ago. But everything Jared touches turns to shite, including his POS prison reform plan and atrocious immigration bill. Trump’s turned into a POS because he put his POS SIL in charge of everything, incl. his signature campaign issue, immigration.

Javanka is the worst thing to happen to America. Without these two treasonous rats Trump might have saved the country, now he’s just another swamp creature.

Franklin Ryckaert , says: May 31, 2019 at 4:33 am GMT

Netanyahu (and most Israelis) don’t want the problem be resoved, neither does Mahmoud Abbas (and most Palestinians). Abbas has already explicitly stated that he will not accept the plan whatever it is. Under such circumstances the only result of Jared’s and Ivanka’s mission might be that Ivanka will get some lucrative contracts for selling her designer shoes in the Middle East, like she did in China. God help us if ever this naive and ignorant woman will run for president!

renfro , says: May 31, 2019 at 6:14 am GMT

Shorter Ilana……’the dogs bark, the caravan moves on.’

Meanwhile Netanyahu is in deep doodoo. After winning the election he failed to form a majority party. So there will be a do over election. This means the PIECE Plan is dead for the time being.

The final round: Netanyahu versus Liberman

https://www.al-monitor.com/pulse/originals/2019/05/israel-benjamin-netanyahu-reuven-rivlin-likud-elections.html

renfro , says: May 31, 2019 at 6:26 am GMT

Here’s the Kushner, Greenblatt, Friedman peace plan. Its not new. Its a transfer plan.

The Jerusalem Summit

Assessment
1. The conventional-wisdom paradigm for the resolution of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict has failed woefully, bringing nothing but misery and despair to both sides – but particularly to the Palestinians as individual human beings.

[Hide MORE]
2. This conventional paradigm has attempted to solve the conflict by means of a Political Approach involving the establishment of a self governing Palestinian entity on territories in Judea Samaria and Gaza which have been under Israeli control since 1967 i.e. on the basis of a “Land for Peace” approach.

3. Dispassionate assessment of the history of the conflict and its current development will strongly suggest that persisting with attempts to attain a political solution on the basis the conventional paradigm are at best futile – and at worse harmful. Accordingly, alternative modes of resolution must be pursued.

B. Analysis

1. Analysis of Palestinian deeds and declarations over the years make it difficult to avoid the conclusion that they are in effect both unwilling and incapable of achieving and maintaining statehood.
(a) Palestinian Unwillingness: This is reflected in the fact that the Palestinians have rejected every single viable proposal which would have afforded them a state – from the 1947 partition plan to the 2000 Barak proposals.

(b) Palestinian Incapability: The Palestinian national movement has enjoyed conditions far more favorable than almost any other national independence movement since WW-II – widespread international endorsement of their cause, unmitigated support of a superpower in the decades of the Cold War, highly sympathetic coverage by the major media organizations, and over a decade of Israeli administrations who have acknowledged (and at times even identified with) the Palestinians declared national aspiration. In spite of this, the achievements of Palestinian national movement have been more miserable than almost any other national independence movement – bringing nothing but privation and penury to its people.
2. It is thus far easier to understand Palestinian conduct if one assumes that it is driven less by lack of Palestinian self determination and more by the very the existence of Jewish self determination; less by the aspiration to establish a Palestinian state and more by the aspiration to dismantle a Jewish state.

Read more….. http://www.jerusalemsummit.org/eng/hs_short_eng.htm

3. The latter, and seemingly more plausible, explanation of Palestinian behavior – i.e. rejection of Jewish self determination and the dismantling of the Jewish nation state – reflects an agenda totally unacceptable by any international standards and thus must be branded as devoid of any legitimacy.

4. Accordingly if the accepted version of the Palestinian narrative – i.e. a desire for Palestinian self determination and the aspiration for Palestinian statehood – cannot be reconciled with the history of Palestinian behavior, this narrative also must be branded as devoid of any legitimacy.

5. This issue of legitimacy of narrative is crucial. Indeed the very fuel of the Political Paradigm involving the establishment of a Palestinian state is the perception – or rather the misperception – of the presently prevailing Palestinian narrative as legitimate.

C. Conclusion

1. The establishment of a Palestinian State must removed from the international agenda.

2. However, removing the issue of a Palestinian state from the international agenda will not eliminate the humanitarian predicament of Palestinians residing in Israeli-administered areas.

3. This is clearly an issue that must be addressed and resolved. But it must be addressed not in political terms but in humanitarian ones.

4. Thus, to successfully resolve the Palestinian problem, the Political Paradigm must be replaced by a Humanitarian Paradigm. This, however can only be done if the current Palestinian narrative, which fuels the Political Paradigm, is de-legitimized.
5. Thus, the de-legitimization of the Palestinian narrative becomes a vital prerequisite to any comprehensive resolution of the Palestinian issue.

D. Proposal

1. A comprehensive Humanitarian Approach to the Palestinian issue would entail three major elements:
(a) The dissolution of UNRWA – which will end the discriminatory treatment of the Palestinians with regard to their status as refugees;

(b) The termination of ethnic discrimination against Palestinians , living in the Arab world – which will end the discriminatory treatment of the Palestinians with regard to their status as residents;

(c) Generous relocation grants to Palestinians living in Israeli administered territories on an individual basis and not via any official Palestinian organization.

2. UNRWA is an organization that perpetuates the Palestinian refugee problem. It is an anomalous organization which exists solely to deal with Palestinian refugees, while all the other refugees on the face of the globe are dealt with by the UN High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR).

3. The organizations not only deal differently with the refugees under their auspices, they each have different definitions for classifying an individual as a “refugee”.

4. This difference in definition has far-ranging consequences. For in contrast to the UNHCR definition, which results in a decline in the number of refugees over time, the UNRWA definition leads to an inflation of the number.

5. In fact, if the UNHCR’s otherwise universal definition were applied to the Palestinian case, the number of refugees would decline from 4-5 million to 200-300,000 i.e. by over 90%!!

6. It thus appears that UNWRA is perpetuating the very problem it was designed to eliminate.
7. Accordingly, the dissolution of UNRWA is an essential prerequisite for any comprehensive, durable settlement of the Palestinian issue.

8. With the dissolution of UNWRA, the remaining, and drastically reduced, number of Palestinian refugees, should be placed under the auspices of UNHCR – in accordance with the accepted practice for all other refugee groups on the face of the globe.

9. Those Palestinians no longer classed as refugees under the new arrangements, must be offered all the privileges afforded all other peoples resident in their current countries of domicile in the Arab world — including the right to acquire citizenship.

10. In order to do this, a vigorous diplomatic and media campaign must be mounted to induce Arab governments to end their harsh discriminatory behavior towards the millions of Palestinians domiciled in their countries and absorb them into their societies as fully fledged citizens. After all, even the Palestinians assert (in the opening paragraph of their National Covenant) that they are “part of the Arab Nation”.

11. As for the Palestinians resident in Israeli administered territory, there is only one reasonable and feasible alternative that will facilitate:
(a) extricating them from their dire humanitarian plight;
(b) free them from the yoke of generations of misrule by their leadership;
(c) ensure the survival of Israel as the nation-state of the Jews.

12. This is a generous relocation and resettlement package to allow them to build a new life for themselves and their families in countries preferably, but not necessarily exclusively, with similar religious and socio-cultural conditions.

13. In order to minimize the ability of organized Palestinian interest groups to impede the success of such an effort, the offer of financial inducement to emigrate must be “atomized” – i.e. made to individual Palestinian breadwinners on a one-to one personal level and not on a communal level via some formal Palestinian entity.
14. A survey conducted among the Palestinians in Nov. 2004 indicates that only about 15% of the Palestinian population resident in Israeli administered areas would reject such an offer outright. By contrast, over 70% would accept some form of material compensation as an inducement to emigrate permanently from the areas currently under Israeli administration (see http://www.jerusalemsummit.org/eng/news.php?news=102 )
15. The economic cost of such a policy of generously financed humanitarian relocation and resettlement would be eminently affordable and would compare favorably with almost all other settlement proposals on the table today. Indeed, its total cost would be around 50% of the present total US outlay on the War in Iraq!!

16. Indeed, given Israel’s present level of GDP, it is an initiative that it could well undertake on its own over the next decade to a decade and a half. It should be realized that this is the period that has elapsed since the initiation of the Oslo process – which has brought nothing but failure and tragedy at the cost of billions of dollars and thousands of lives.

17. Of course, if the US, the EU and other developed nations were to contribute to this effort, it could be implemented in a far shorter space of time and with almost no burden on the world economy.

18. Quite the opposite, the Palestinians arriving in their new countries of domicile will not be impoverished refugees but reasonably affluent émigrés. The funds that they would be bringing with them would provide a considerable boost for the economies of these nations – most of which would be developing countries with a pressing need for such a substantial influx of funds.

E. Summary

The proposed initiative constitutes a “win-win” proposal which will:
Alleviate, and even eliminate, the humanitarian plight of individual Palestinians

Ensure the continued security and survival of Israel as the Nation-State of the Jewish people

Provide a Significant Boost to the Economies of the Developing World

Transform poverty stricken refugees into affluent émigrés

Al Liguori , says: • Website May 31, 2019 at 6:58 am GMT

How can one write meaningfully about the Kushners without mentioning that they are Chabadniks? To understand the significance, one must understand Jared’s family background and the virulent malevolence of supremacist Chabad. http://judaism.is/kushner.html

Bardon Kaldian , says: May 31, 2019 at 7:25 am GMT

“We will forever live by the sword.” Bibi’s words in 2015.

I knew there was a reason I always liked this guy….

joeshittheragman , says: May 31, 2019 at 9:46 am GMT

The Palestinians rise in frustration and fury; the Israelis respond with overwhelming force. The world then offers-up perfunctory sympathy for the Palestinians. Everybody moves on
——————————————————————————————————-
Interesting that after getting their butts kicked every time, when the smoke clears, there’s another Pal. kid is still throwing rocks at israeli soldiers. I don’t know how it will happen but somehow the Pals are going to win this thing.

neutral , says: May 31, 2019 at 9:57 am GMT

So much wrong with this, where to start. The Economist is not excellent, The Economist only supports Israel to have the right to protect its borders, Kusher is a jewish supremacist that has given absolute everything to Israel, the Arabs taking part in these ethnic cleansing talks are all corrupt puppets and how no real support in their countries.

This is all makes sense if one knows that this woman is an anti white jew. Its time to deport this anti white crusader back to South Africa, she was after all very eager to destroy the country the whites built, why should she not suffer the consequences of her actions and beliefs?

AryanMasterUberMan , says: May 31, 2019 at 10:14 am GMT

What I find curious about Israel is that they are backed by the world’s most powerful military force, they get infinite money, almost any high-tech military hardware they want, an international propaganda aparatus that exonerates them regardless of what they do, and an entire population that is militarized, and yet with all these advantages going on 70 years, these jews CANNOT even colonize a tiny desert strip of the Levant. Unbelievable. Really, how incompetent are jews? Forget Eretz Israel. That requires conquering people much more dangerous and resilient than poor Palestinian peasants. It’s like jews are incapable of building. Destruction is all they know.
Israel will fail.
Like their Soviet Union failed.
Everything a jew touches fails.

Realist , says: May 31, 2019 at 11:31 am GMT
@Thinker

Javanka is the worst thing to happen to America. Without these two treasonous rats Trump might have saved the country, now he’s just another swamp creature.

Trump is a denizen of the swamp….a Deep State sycophant. Javanka is allowed to be ‘treasonous’ by her daddy. You have the cart before the horse.

Old and grumpy , says: May 31, 2019 at 1:52 pm GMT
@AryanMasterUberMan

Can’t have the possibility that a Palestinian genocide bump the Holocaust from the headlines. As it is now every Jewish holiday, they can celebrate historic bloodshed with Palestinian bloodshed. Oh and not to forget, all those rock tossing kids have organs to be harvested for Israel’s growing transplant industry.

Brooklyn Dave , says: May 31, 2019 at 3:28 pm GMT

Brilliant article, Ilana. I love the term Abu Ivanka al Amriki. If that isn’t derisive, I don’t know what is. Trump has already turned off a part of his base in regard that Jared and Ivanka still having too much to say in the administration. The sooner he gets rid of them (don’t hold your breath), the better off the nation will be. The only pressure I can see Trump bending to in regard to Bimbo & Boy Bimbo is that of the military – one of the few institutions that he respects. Since Obama cleared the military of a lot of its good men, leaving it with career-minded slimeballs, one wonders who in the military would have to cojonees to put that kind of pressure on Trump? If Ivanka thinks having her eye on the presidency is realistic, she better think twice. I’d ALMOST contemplate voting for Ocasio-Cortez for a micro-second before I’d go that route. Unfortunately, the Palestinians are disposable. They have nothing to offer anyone in realpolitik. Muslims and Arabs will make all kinds of noise, but not seriously risk a thread of their wives’ burkhas. Only human compassion motivates activism on behalf of the Palestinians. Yes, Bibi will have Jared & Ivanka’s heads spinning and dazed by the time their plane lands back in the US. Ah well, such is realpolitik.

Anon [414] • Disclaimer , says: May 31, 2019 at 5:34 pm GMT

Jews had made a mess of Europe until WWII because they were always treated as the outsiders, not allowed to own land, etc., so they stuck together as a group for survival and to thrive. But things are different now, esp. in the US, they are outsiders no more. Why do Jews continue to stick together as a tribe, still refusing to assimilate, wanting the US to go to more wars on behalf of Israel, and encouraging open borders and multiculturalism so that they are not the only out group against a white majority. Why won’t they assimilate?

I’ve come to the conclusion that it’s all because of Israel. Israel needs for the diaspora to stay loyal to the tribe to ensure it’s survival. That’s why they are going out of their way to build the holocaust museum, because Judaism is losing its appeal as more Jews become secular, they need to keep them loyal to the tribe on a new religion: Holocaustianity.

As long as there is an Israel, Jews will never assimilate, and the world will always be in chaos. For the world to achieve peace, Israel Must DIE.

Al Liguori , says: • Website May 31, 2019 at 4:34 pm GMT
@TKK ltra-Orthodox Jewish Newspaper Edits Female World Leaders Out of Charlie Hebdo March
http://www.mediaite.com/online/ultra-orthodox-jewish-newspaper-edits-female-world-leaders-out-of-charlie-hebdo-march/
•IDF’s chief rabbi-to-be Eyal Karim permits raping women in wartime
http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-4827240,00.html
•etc. http://judaism.is/torah-on-women.html
druid55 , says: May 31, 2019 at 5:37 pm GMT
@Al Liguori

Definitely a shitty little country

Tired of Not Winning , says: May 31, 2019 at 6:16 pm GMT

Girly man a.k.a. Lucifer in the flesh’s Mideast Peace Plan is dead on arrival because China and Russia ain’t drinking his poisonous KoolAid, unlike his dumb FIL who chugs it by the bucket:

https://www.zerohedge.com/news/2019-05-28/china-russia-jointly-boycott-trumps-deal-century-mideast-peace-conference

“Everything Jared touches turns to gold,” Trump tells us. A guy that dumb and blind has no business being president.

Robert Dolan , says: May 31, 2019 at 6:41 pm GMT

The Kushners are full on criminals.

Ivanka and her idiot husband are the worst thing that ever happened to Donald Trump.

Trump could have been a contender. Instead…..he’s just another shabbos goy sellout bum.

Tired of Not Winning , says: June 1, 2019 at 12:27 am GMT

US Confirms It Updated Maps To Show Disputed Golan Heights As Israeli:

https://www.zerohedge.com/news/2019-05-31/us-confirms-it-updated-maps-show-golan-heights-israeli

Next, Trump will confirm US updated map showing Iran as part of Israel.

[May 31, 2019] The Hidden Side of the Mueller Report by Tom Mysiewicz

Notable quotes:
"... There are numerous NGOs that act on behalf of Israel in the U.S., examples being CUFI, JINSA, AIPAC and the Chabad Lubbivitcher sect. ..."
"... For, if the real intention had been to "get" Trump post election -- and not make him a sympathetic character to the average American -- an investigation would have focused on the "Russian" mafia and their banks, Israeli intel, Trump's bankruptcies (and who got him out of them) and the Chabad Lubbavitcher sect. Does anyone really believe that a U.S. legislature that previously violated protocol and invited Bibi Netanyahu to the U.S. on its own -- and then gave him more than 15 standing ovations -- would impeach the man who gave Jerusalem and the Golan Heights to Israel? This is sheer nonsense -- theater intended to sway the gullible public. ..."
"... In fact, Adelson even funds a major newspaper in Israel -- Israel Today -- that has helped keep Netanyahu in power. (The 85-year-old and his wife Miriam gave $82-million+ to Republicans and candidate Trump in 2016.) But, alas, this alone is not enough to account for the election upset (if that was what it was.) ..."
"... In order for Trump to win, it would be necessary to swing a small percentage of disaffected white Americans from both parties. That small percentage (8%-10%) is now referred to as the "Alt Right." ..."
"... It should be remembered that, during the 2016 campaign, Hillary had discussed creating a private non-monitored hotline to Netanyahu when she was elected [12] ) ..."
"... So, the unhinged and unprecedented frothing-at-the-mouth rage towards Trump displayed by the worst of the Neocons (Bill Kristol, Jennifer Rubin, Max Boot, etc.) is all part of the ruse? ..."
"... entire deep state apparatus, with international assistance swung into action with the phony Mueller investigation was a sure sign that Trump's platform was never going to be allowed. ..."
"... "When a public is stressed and confused, a big lie told repeatedly and unchallenged can become accepted truth." ~George Orwell ..."
"... As for Flynn: he knew about many of the misdeeds of the previous administration. They took advantage of a neophyte administration fending off Sally Yates Russian Collusion initiative via a corrupt FBI Director to pressure them to let Flynn go – a terrible newbie mistake telegraphing weakness to all his enemies. ..."
"... So that being said, what's his point. That Trump is exceptionally corrupt despite no collusion with Russia because he's controlled by Izzies? ..."
May 31, 2019 | www.unz.com

The Mueller Report is done, and from the digest made public, its conclusion of no collusion to "fix" the last election by the Russian or "other" foreign governments does not surprise me. I agree with this conclusion. These foreign governments would, presumably, include Israel. However, in the case of Israel, I believe this may be a question of semantics.There is, I believe, considerable evidence that non-governmental forces acting on behalf of Israel succeeded in placing an individual in charge of the U.S. who is currently redirecting the power and financial resources of the nation to almost entirely serve the interests of a foreign power. (And that entity is not Russia!)

There are numerous NGOs that act on behalf of Israel in the U.S., examples being CUFI, JINSA, AIPAC and the Chabad Lubbivitcher sect. There are many super-wealthy patrons of Israel and the Netanyahu government, such as Sheldon Adelson, that were involved in Trump's election. Finally there are shadowy private Israeli contractors, such as those referred to by Cambridge Analytica's Alexander Nix, and the so-called "Russian" mafia, which is reputedly controlled by individuals loyal to Israel. Trump apparently has had business proximity in the past to such entities and their bank. [1]

First indication along these lines can be deduced from special prosecutor Robert Mueller's indictment of General Michael Flynn [2]

. Flynn admits lying to FBI agents about his conversations with Sergey Kislyak, then-Russian Ambassador to the United States, in December 2016, when Trump was president-elect. Apparently acting on orders from Jared Kushner, Trump's senior advisor and son-in-law, Flynn contacted Kislyak to ask if Russia would delay or veto a UN Security Council vote criticizing Israeli settlements. It's certainly a stretch to see how aiding and abetting actions illegal under international law would benefit the U.S. or Trump's MAGA agenda.

Empirical evidence of the preceding and a good example of the type of Israelocentric policy making that came in with the election of Mr. Trump can be found in the book Fire and Fury: Inside the Trump White House . [2a] There author Michael Wolff relates an alleged conversation between former White House chief strategist Steve Bannon and Roger Ailes, the former CEO of Fox News. Bannon reportedly told Ailes that Trump, Bibi Netanyahu and Trump-Netanyahu backer Sheldon Adelson are in agreement with moving the US embassy to Jerusalem. The national interests of the U.S. and possible international ramifications of this act apparently were not considered.

Trump's reaction to Bannon's alleged statement: "When he was fired, he not only lost his job, he lost his mind."

"Donald Trump is the Zionist water boy in the Oval Office. Trump's collusion was never with the Russian government; it was always with the Bolshevik/Ashkenazi/Zionist mafia (the new Deep State) that has now ousted the old Clinton-Bush mafia (the old Deep State) from power. And that coup was stunningly successful and swift. Accordingly, Donald Trump has faithfully filled his administration with quintessential Zionist insiders -- including Mike Pence, Mike Pompeo, John Bolton, Nikki Haley, Elliot Abrams, Gary Cohn, Steve Mnuchin, Wilbur Ross, David Friedman, Jared Kushner, et al.," comments America's most courageous evangelist, Chuck Baldwin, "God help us." [3]

MAGA -- Make America Great Again -- was widely believed to be a spontaneous outpouring of authentic nationalistic sentiment embodied by President Donald Trump. Trump's election was initially welcomed by some countries as a government acting in the actual self-interest of the U.S. because it would be far more predictable than one acting for hidden interests. And Trump's election, promising to reduce the footprint of the U.S. abroad, offered the hope of rolling back the push toward a world war.

Alas, much as was the case with the so-called "Arab Spring", these hopes did not materialize and U.S. interventions overseas have grown. Often, these are somehow related to the interests of the Israeli state and its Likud government:

Trump withdrew the U.S. from the Iran nuclear deal and placed new sanctions on Iran, in accordance with the wishes of Netanyahu and Sheldon Adelson. On April 22 nd , for instance, oil prices jumped 3% as the Trump administration promised to remove sanction waivers on Iran oil [4] -- which had allowed countries such as India to continue buying Iranian oil -- prompting threats from Iran to close the Straits of Hormuz for this violation of the nuclear disarmament treaty. American consumers could pay soaring prices on all their purchases for this act which demonstrably is connected to pre-election planning by backers of Israel with the Trump campaign. (Apparently fearing that this would cause a major rift with India, further alienate Turkey, and scuttle hopes of a trade agreement with China, Trump quietly reversed course to give these countries another year to comply, further demonstrating the Israelocentric monomania of the Neocon-Zionists vs. the actual interests of the U.S.) The ongoing negotiations with North Korea appear centered on its "giving up" Iranian nuclear and missile secrets -- as well as destroying its own offensive missile capabilities -- in return for normalization. Trump recently vetoed a bill to pull U.S. troops out of Yemen and their support of the Saudi aggression (apparently as part of a deal to have Saudi Arabia guarantee Arab support for Trump and Jared Kushner's new Mid-East "peace plan".) Trump's promises of reducing involvement in Syria appear stalled and the U.S. continues the de facto support of he partition of Syria (A future Kurdistan may well become a part of Eretz Israel in the future -- the Barzani brothers were trained by Israel and articles have appeared linking the Kurds to the genetics of the Israeli population) as well as the protection of the evacuation of key ISIS operatives. In South America, war is on the horizon as Neocons move to topple Venezuela -- going so far as to name an alternative president. Venezuela's heavy crude is key to diesel production and China has substantial claims on it (which might not be honored if they don't play ball with Trump.) And the restructuring of South America may also play a role in the creation of a "New Israel" in Patagonia -- a potential evacuation zone of Jews from Israel, the U.S., Canada and elsewhere in the event of war or national chaos -- where Israeli operatives are reported to be extremely active. [4a] Meanwhile, President Trump has destroyed the last vestiges of international law relating to conquest of territory by aggressive warfare, as in the case of the 1967 Mideast War. He has ceded control of territory so seized (recognizing Israeli conquest of East Jerusalem and Syria's Golan Heights) despite U.S. membership in the U.N., which was created to prevent such events in the future so as to make war less attractive. Was this done for any specific U.S. benefit? I think not. But it may have something to do with President Trump's "fabulous" new Mideast peace plan that is similar to Bill Clinton's fabulous new peace plan. Possibly to pressure Europe to support the redrawing of the Mid East, the Trump administration is expected to launch a tariff war with the EU starting this May. (This will apparently follow an expected superficial agreement with China during the same period.) And money for Israel has not been stinted either. Military aid for Israel apparently avoided the budget ax in Trump's 2020 fiscal plan sent to Congress. It includes the full $3.3-billion in assistance promised under a 10-year memorandum of understanding, despite spending cuts in other sectors affecting American interests throughout the proposal. [5]

While the interests of the Israeli ally have been thoroughly protected, in the economic sphere, Trump's MAGA has been something of a train wreck for Trump's populist supporters on main street. Their indebtedness has soared [6]

while the interest on savings (for the 40-something percent of those who have any) dropped to near zero. They got tax breaks that were temporary (as opposed to the massive permanent tax cuts for corporations who are often heavily indebted to large banks) and then, many learned they wouldn't be getting their usual annual tax refunds due to quirks in the tax law -- something that has hit the retail economy hard. Wall St. and the big banks have certainly prospered. U.S. Corporations were allowed to repatriate huge sums of money with no strings attached. And what did they do with this money? Did they invest in infrastructure, job training of Americans and building/retooling of factories as President Trump should have insisted? No, they used it for stock buybacks and acquisitions -- mostly paper shuffling -- that has kept the stock market propped up.

Trump's tariff war, meanwhile, has imposed new costs on average Americans -- not on the Chinese -- with industrial production dropping or remaining flat and U.S. trade deficits soaring. The ham-handed imposition of tariffs without corresponding domestic industrial capacity may also have destroyed some of America's backbone and staunch Trump supporters -- farmers on small- and mid-sized farms. Large amounts of corn and soybeans were placed in silos awaiting the end of Trump's "trade war". These have mostly been destroyed by record flooding and are NOT covered by crop insurance. Many of these farmers will go bankrupt and big agribusiness may ultimately take over their land. (And the "farm bailouts" announced by Trump will mainly go to large farms and big agribusiness -- including farms owned by Chinese interests!)

In a nutshell, Trump "jazzed" a brief economic recovery in the U.S. with massive tax cuts for big business and temporary cuts for voters (more bark than bite variety) while increasing the national debt, which these same overtaxed voters will ultimately be on the hook for. At the same time Trump "jawboned" the Federal Reserve to ease monetary policy so interest rates wouldn't rise as a result of the vast increase in national indebtedness. He has laid the groundwork for eventual hyperinflation (or hyper-stagflation) that may well ruin more of his middle class voters after the 2020 election.

"Manufacturing production ( in March -- Ed. ) was flat after dropping in January and February. In the first three months of the year, factory output fell at an annual rate of 1.1%. Production of cars, truck and auto parts dropped 2.5% in March and 4.5% over the past year." [7] The Cass Freight Index, a measure of truck shipments indicative of overall economic activity is down for the fourth consecutive month year-over-year. [8] Sales of Class 8 trucks (18-wheelers) hit the ditch in January, with orders down 58 percent from a year ago hitting a level not seen since October 2016, near the end of the transportation recession, "when Class-8 truck orders had plunged to the lowest levels since 2009, and truck and engine manufacturers responded with layoffs," writes Wolf Richter. [9]

American businesses expanded in April at the slowest pace in 31 months, according to IHS Markit's survey of business executives. IHS Markit's flash PMI for services slipped to 52.9 from 55.3, while the manufacturing index was flat at 52.4. Any number over 50 signifies expansion. "The U.S. economy started the second quarter with its weakest expansion since mid-2016 as businesses reported a marked slowing in output, new orders and hiring," said Chris Williamson, chief business economist at IHS Markit " [10]

"Manufacturing production has pivoted to the downside in the first quarter of the year, showing the revival in factories and output is sputtering for the first time since the Trump economics team took office," said Chris Rupkey, chief economist at MUFG in New York. "The trade war and America First policies have not brought factories back home yet." [11]

What about immigration? While President Trump "talks the talk" he has failed to close the border as previous presidents have done and seems more interested in expanding the H1B program for large corporate interests instead of retraining Americans to fill at least some of the gap of necessary skills . He allows American soldiers to be captured and disarmed by the Mexican military inside U.S. borders (as happened recently without a proportionate response) and the rate of "catch and release" has soared due to lack of internment facilities. America is filled with unemployed (U6 -- the real unemployment rate -- is 3 times higher than the publicized rate and many of the real jobs are part time and multiple jobs can be held by a single person), homeless and homeless camps, yet we need hordes of unskilled labor pouring into the country? Trump proposes to dump refugees in sanctuary cities, which sounds nice until one realizes that these cities will simply give the refugees tickets to go elsewhere in America. (This already happens in some places in the U.S. where indigents are given tickets to go elsewhere.)

The empirical evidence is therefore clear. Trump's announced program vs. what he has actually delivered to nationalist voters who supported him is what a Hollywood Western town is to a real Western town: it is only a facade. (It should be remembered that Steve Bannon, one of the chief architects of the Trump victory, went from being a Goldman Sachs investment banker to being a Hollywood movie director!) The only plausible explanation? That the Neocon-Zionist power structure co-opted the authentic nationalist sentiments of Americans for their own ends and disguised this control with "Pepe": a neo-Nazi green frog "front man" wearing a red "MAGA" ball cap. It stands to reason that such potent and capable forces are the real source of President Trump's power.

Amazingly, Trump's approval rating remains surprisingly high despite the outcome. Part of this may be the unwillingness of average people to believe their vote counted for nothing and they are heading for the same outcome as if Hillary Clinton had been elected. Then there is something called the Galileo gambit (also called the "Galileo fallacy.") This informal logical fallacy is a way to convince listeners (or viewers) that a questionable leader (or his policies) are good despite evidence to the contrary. I believe this was accomplished using the Russian meddling meme and having the establishment media -- widely distrusted by Trump supporters -- pile on Trump. For, if the real intention had been to "get" Trump post election -- and not make him a sympathetic character to the average American -- an investigation would have focused on the "Russian" mafia and their banks, Israeli intel, Trump's bankruptcies (and who got him out of them) and the Chabad Lubbavitcher sect. Does anyone really believe that a