Lebanon – Should it be Devil, Deep Blue Sea… or Russia? – By Andre Vltchek ( New Eastern Outlook)

Author: Andre Vltchek

 

 

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Lebanon, as so often in the past, is facing mortal danger.

Saudi Arabia is putting great pressure on the Lebanese Prime Minister Saad al-Hariri, a powerful but controversial figure who holds dual nationality – Saudi and Lebanese. Riyadh expects Lebanon to play by its own rules, sidelining Hezbollah, ending Iranian influence in the country, and promoting Saudi business and political interests… or else. It is a clear that foreign aid from the Gulf is increasingly conditional.

Tension with Israel is also mounting. A military conflict could erupt at any moment, with devastating consequences. Between 1978 and 2006, Israel attacked its northern neighbor on five occasions. The last time Israel invaded Lebanon, during the so-called Lebanon War in 2006, at least 1,300 Lebanese people were killed and 1 million displaced.

The Israeli air force is lately, unceremoniously, violating Lebanese air space, flying over its territory on the way to Syria, where it is bombing selected targets, grossly violating various international laws.

To make things worse, Israel has begun building an ugly concrete wall right at the border line, an act which Lebanon views almost as a declaration of war. The Lebanese military received orders to confront Israeli bulldozers and construction crews, if the building of the frontier barrier continues. Both sides are now using intermediaries to communicate, but a confrontation may take place at any moment.

There is also a maritime dispute between the two countries, over an oil and gas rich area, which both countries are claiming as their own. This quarrel is also threatening the fragile ‘peace’ between Israel and Lebanon. Although some would say, what peace, really, if both nations are still technically at war?

Reported by AP, on February 8, 2018:

“Israel has in recent days escalated its threats against Lebanon over Lebanon’s invitation for offshore gas exploration bids on the countries’ maritime border.

Israeli Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman described Lebanon’s exploration tender as “very provocative” and suggested that Lebanon had put out invitations for bids from international groups for a gas field ,”which is by all accounts ours.”

His comments drew sharp condemnation from the militant Hezbollah group and Lebanese officials, including Hariri, a Western ally, who described Lieberman’s comments as a “blatant provocation that Lebanon rejects.”

Abi Assi quoted Hariri as saying Thursday that area in the water that Israel is claiming, “is owned by Lebanon.”

A day after the above report appeared, Lebanon’s energy minister said, “the dispute with Israel would not stop Lebanon benefiting from potential undersea reserves in the contentious Block 9.”

An international consortium consisting of three giant oil companies – Italy’s Eni, France’s Total and Russia’s Novatek – is standing by, ready to begin drilling, although Total is increasingly reluctant to participate in the project amidst the Israeli threats.

*

Many in Lebanon feel that their country is literally caught between the devil and the deep blue sea.

For years, war in neighboring Syria has been sending hundreds of thousands of refugees across the border into tiny Lebanon, greatly straining its fragile and inadequate infrastructure. Refugee slums have mushroomed, in the Bekaa Valley, as well as in all the major cities.

Terrorist groups supported by the West and its allies, have spilled over the border, and are operating in the frontier region, while also infiltrating the capital.

In 2017, the Lebanese military, together with Syrian forces and Hezbollah, managed to confront and greatly weaken both al Nusra and ISIS cells.

Hezbollah is the only truly powerful social force in Lebanon, providing assistance to all needy citizens and refugees, regardless of their religion or ethnicity. It is also fighting, determinedly, all terrorist implants operating in the Lebanese territory.

Thanks to the help from both Russia and Hezbollah, the Syrian armed forces managed to regain most of the territory of their country and to come very close to winning the war. The country is now rebuilding and hundreds of thousands of refugees are returning home, including those who have temporarily been seeking refuge in Lebanon.

Sidelining Hezbollah would definitely have a devastating impact on both Lebanon and Syria.

And sidelining, intimidating and antagonizing Hezbollah is precisely what the United States is doing again.

US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson traveled to Beirut, and on February 15th, addressed reporters at a press conference:

“It is impossible to talk about stability, sovereignty and security in Lebanon without addressing Hezbollah. The US has considered Hezbollah a terrorist organization for more than two decades now …It is unacceptable for a militia like Hezbollah to operate outside the authority of the Lebanese government. The only legitimate defender of the Lebanese state is the Lebanese armed forces.”

Mr. Tillerson made some reconciliatory noises regarding Hezbollah, just a few days earlier, but was loudly criticized by both his regime apparatchiks and by the mainstream media. Promptly, he ‘regained his senses’ and stopped rocking the boat.

Israel, Saudi Arabia and the United States, indeed, treat pro-Iranian Hezbollah as a terrorist organization. Israel continuously intimidates Lebanon, claiming that it will not tolerate any Iranian influence in its vicinity. The fact that Lebanon is an independent country, is somehow overlooked. It is expected to ‘behave’, to accept foreign dictates, even if it means going against its own interests.

After all, Lebanon is in the Middle East, which in turn is just the playground of the West and its allies.

*

Most of the Lebanese citizens are indignant. The Israeli air force flying over their country’s territory, attacking Syria, is to them, naturally, something absolutely unacceptable. Being bullied over disputed resources-rich sea territory, as well as the construction of border barriers, is causing great outrage. However, until now, the Lebanese people felt that there was very little they could do, faced with the overwhelming military might of Israel, a country which is determinedly backed by the United States and most of the Western countries.

All this has suddenly changed.

Unexpectedly, although logically, the ‘Russian alternative’ has emerged.

As reported by the Middle East Monitor on the February 8, 2018:

“Russian media sources revealed that on Tuesday Russian Prime Minister, Dmitry Medvedev, instructed the Russian Defense Ministry to begin talks with its Lebanese counterpart to sign a military cooperation agreement between Russia and Lebanon.

The draft agreement to be signed between the parties included the opening of Lebanese ports in front of Russian military vessels and fleets, in addition to making Lebanese airports a transit station for Russian aircrafts and fighters, and the dispatch of Russian military experts to train and strengthen the capabilities of members of the Lebanese army, according to the Russian agency Sputnik.”

This is just a logical continuation of Russian approach towards the Middle East in general, and Lebanon in particular. According to a Russian Foreign Ministry statement, made public in November 2017, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov declared:

“Russia invariably supports the sovereignty, unity and territorial integrity of Lebanon. We are interested in ensuring that Lebanon is safe, effectively functioning with the participation of all branches of government and with all state structures.”

Lavrov’s remarks came during a meeting with his Lebanese counterpart Gebran Bassil in Moscow.”

Russia is becoming increasingly active in those countries that have been destroyed or at least crippled by the Western interventions, such as Syria, Libya, now Lebanon and soon, hopefully, Afghanistan. Russian involvement is ranging from diplomatic and economic, to, as has been the case in Syria, military.

A Lebanese intellectual, anonymously, declared for this essay:

“If Russian military comes to Lebanon, then Israeli air force would certainly stop flying over our territory. We would also be able to retain our organizations and movements: particularly those that helped our country to stay united and to survive. Most of the Lebanese people have no bad experience with Russia. We tried many things, many alliances and they failed: we are still vulnerable, exposed. There is no harm in attempting to work with the Russians.”

The West, particularly the United States, is well aware of the mood on the streets of Lebanon. That is why Mr. Tillerson came on an official visit. But he offered nothing new, and what he offered, was rejected. It is clear that his mission was to simply preserve the status quo.

While it is increasingly obvious that the Lebanese people are hoping for something much more dramatic and ‘radical’ – they want their country to be respected, taken seriously. They want their borders to be protected. They want to have their independent foreign policy. They want to decide who is their ally and who is their foe.

Lebanon is tired of being stuck between the devil and the deep blue sea. And now it is discovering that it actually has other options!

Andre Vltchek is philosopher, novelist, filmmaker and investigative journalist. He’s a creator of Vltchek’s World in Word and Images, a writer of revolutionary novel Aurora and several other books. He writes especially for the online magazine “New Eastern Outlook.”
https://journal-neo.org/2018/02/17/lebanon-should-it-be-devil-deep-blue-sea-or-russia/

Disastrous Winter Olympics For the USA, May Lose South Korea to Peace – By Niall Bradley (Sott.net)

mike pence winter olympics

‘You have good time, Mike?’… ‘I’d rather be in Israel.’

I must confess some measure of schadenfreude at the sight of beady-eyed US Vice-president Mike Pence squirming through his ‘protocol headache‘ at the opening ceremony of the winter Olympics in South Korea last week. There he was, the distinguished emissary of South Korea’s ‘protector’, a representative of the Exceptional Nation, eclipsed by the surprise inclusion of a representative of ‘the enemy’. And at the opening ceremony of the Winter Olympics, no less! Who politicizes sporting and cultural events like that? It’s outrageous!

The irony, no doubt, was completely lost on the Americans. After provoking Russia into responding to a military attack launched by that nutcase Saakashvili during the opening ceremony of the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing, then trying their level best to scare people away from participating in the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, then pressuring international sporting bodies to ban Russian athletes from the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio, then doing likewise to cast Russians as untermensch at the current winter games, there’s some poetic justice in seeing the US deep state’s manipulation of the cultural sphere bite it in the rear.

Pro-Trump pundits lambasted the US ‘liberal media’ for its allegedly fawning coverage of ‘the Communist dictator’s photogenic sister’. While the coverage was somewhat reasonable towards the North Korean regime – after all, how could media, globally, fail to notice this turn of events after the past year’s bellicose rhetoric? – it was far from ‘doing Kim’s propaganda for him’, and it’s doubtful that US coverage was motivated by ‘making the Trump administration look bad’.

For example, that preeminent ultra-liberal outlet, The Guardian, disparaged the peaceful overture with this headline: ‘‘Humble’ Kim Yo-jong has charmed the media, but the glow is unlikely to last‘. The notion that coverage of the event was ‘partisan’ is also betrayed by this statement in a January New York Times op-ed from Obama’s State Department Assistant Secretary for East Asian and Pacific Affairs, David R. Russell:

“It is fine for the South Koreans to take the lead, but if they don’t have the US behind them, they won’t get far with North Korea. And if the South Koreans are viewed as running off the leash, it will exacerbate tensions within the alliance.”

The obnoxious ‘leash’ Russell refers to is the one Korean-American historian Leo Chang Soon says, “South Korea has been under since Syngman Rhee flew into Korea on General Douglas MacArthur’s plane to become the first president of South Korea on September 2, 1945.”

So Trump, Pence, and the whole US government indeed appear foolish given that any protests they may raise against the two Koreas symbolically uniting under one Olympic flag amounts to the suggestion that North Korea had conspired to do so in order to ‘drive a wedge between South Korea and the US’.

Things went from bad to worst-possible-scenario for the US when South Korean president Moon Jae-In subsequently hosted Kim Yo-jong at the presidential ‘Blue House’ in Seoul, the first such visit by a member of the Kim dynasty since the Korean War ended, and during which she handed him a formal invitation to meet with her brother in Pyongyang ‘ASAP’.

Kim Yo Jong Moon Jae-In

Deep State warning lights all blinked red when this happened: Kim Yo Jong, North Korean leader Kim Jong Un’s sister, formally invites South Korean president Moon Jae-In to Pyongyang.

What some seem to have forgotten (more likely, never even considered) is that the only reason Trump has spent the past year in a dangerous war of words with Kim is because that is what the Deep State needed to happen. The shock that produced a president Trump – the Clintons’ fall in early November 2016 – came at exactly the same time that an apparently separate shock brought down South Korean president Park Geun-hye: the eruption of mass demonstrations in late October 2016 following the exposure that she had effectively handed the reins of power to a Rasputin-like psychic running an extortion racket with government funds.

In the fallout that followed (think Hillary’s Emails + Benghazi-gate + Uranium One… except that people actually went to jail), South Korean aides and ministers were arrested from November 2016 all the way through late March 2017, when Park herself was indicted. So the US Deep State was on notice that voters were about to swing ‘left’, which in the South Korean context meant electing a party that would be markedly less antagonistic towards its northern neighbor, which always increases the risk of peace breaking out on the Korean peninsula, and thus increases the risk of rendering the US’ massive military presence redundant.

With South Korean elections coming up in May 2017, and likely to bring in – for the first time in over a decade – a pro-unification government in favor of engaging with the North Koreans rather than threatening to bomb them back to the stone age (again), US War Chief James Mattis set off on a ‘reassurance’ tour of East Asian vassals and tributaries. Landing in South Korea on February 2nd 2017, Mattis pushed for the installation of THAAD missile systems before the new future government could, inevitably, object to new ‘facts on the ground’. Rex Tillerson followed suit with a civilian version of the tour, landing first in Japan on March 15th.

From February 11th, 2017 onward, North Korea began the first of 16 missile test launches that year – the most it has ever conducted in one year. This was almost certainly done with one eye on the political upheaval in both South Korea and Washington, and the US Deep State’s efforts to contain the fallout of both.

Trump then declared on April 2nd 2017 that the US “would be willing to go it alone to restrain North Korea’s nuclear weapons program should China fail to change the situation,” which began the tit-for-tat insults between him and Kim, and the UN resolutions (further) sanctioning North Korea, thus generating the overall atmosphere of imminent Armageddon. If the ostensible strategic purpose of publicly bellowing ‘fire and fury’ at North Korea was meant to prevent it from acquiring nuclear weapons capable of reaching the US, then it apparently failed.

Then again, sabre-rattling over North Korea has always been a means to the end of surrounding China with US missile batteries, hence the need for an enduring ‘crisis’ over North Korea and serious US aversion to any moves towards a peaceful and unified Korea.

Remember that Trump started down this route just two days before reversing position on Syria and announcing that it had ‘crossed the chemical weapons red line’, which cemented the US strategy of doubling down on ‘Plan B’ by carving a piece out of Syria. The coincidental timing only underscores the political compromise Trump had to make; ‘yield on foreign policy if you want to live, much less see through the end of your term and implement any of your election promises’.

At the time I wondered if Kim was indeed crazy – not because he might actually start nuking people, but because from a PR point of view he appeared to be hurting his chances of success with the incoming pro-peace government in Seoul. But actually, he was applying the rule that all countries must eventually grasp; that in this world any sovereign nation-state seeking to protect or advance its interests must acquire the credible threat of violence to make diplomacy successful. When everyone learns to ‘speak softly, but carry a big stick’, then, maybe, we can have something approximating world peace.

North Korea would of course lose in any serious conflict with the US, but not before thousands of US soldiers and possibly millions of US citizens, died too. It’s doubtful whether any US politician, nor even its Deep Staters, would be willing to risk taking that kind of a hit to America’s status as the Exceptional Nation, particularly given the US’ chronically polarized political climate.

South Korea doesn’t have that ‘luxury’: conflict on the peninsula is for her an existential matter. It’s only by demonstrating just how much firepower North Korea has, and how far it is willing to go in using it, that South Korea is taking its northern neighbor seriously. Hence the friendly smiles in PyeongChang.

South Korean President Moon better watch out though – while it may be difficult for the CIA to get to Kim in the North, it would be a cakewalk for them to get to him.

Kim Yo Jong korea olympics

South Korean president Moon Jae-In, second left, talks with North Korea’s president of the People’s Assembly, Kim Yong Nam, second right, during a performance of North Korea’s Samjiyon Orchestra at the National Theater in Seoul. To the left of Kim Yong Nam is Kim Yo Jong, North Korean leader Kim Jong Un’s sister. This photo was shared with the media by the SOUTH Korean government, not the North.

Niall Bradley (Profile)

Niall Bradley has a background in political science and media consulting, and has been an editor and contributing writer at SOTT.net for 8 years. His articles are cross-posted on his personal blog, NiallBradley.net. Niall is co-host of the ‘Behind the Headlines’ radio show on the Sott Radio Network and co-authored Manufactured Terror: The Boston Marathon Bombings, Sandy Hook, Aurora Shooting and Other False-Flag Terror Attacks with Joe Quinn.

 

SYRIAN ARMY TO ENTER AFREEN; GEARING UP FOR WAR; U.S. IN THE CROSSHAIRS – by David Fadel

SYRIANCITIES

Sergei Lavrov, Russia’s able foreign minister, has formally accused the U.S. of supporting Jabhat Al-Nusra (Alqaeda), an organization considered terrorist by every nation on earth except the Zionist Apartheid Entity.  Not only does the UN consider Nusra a terrorist organization, but, also, the American Department of State.  Lavrov stated that it was obvious the U.S. was not willing to fight Nusra in Syria based on their inaction whenever opportunities arose to strike that terrorist group.  Just as the U.S. created Alqaeda, so did the U.S. create Nusra.  Remember some of my old articles about this subject:  Nusra which means “assistance” in Arabic was created by Robert Ford and Bandar bin Sultaan when they realized that the Syrian Army was not falling apart – that there were insufficient deserters to fight the Syrian Arab Army, and, thus, there was a need for assistance.  Nusra is plain and simple Saudi Arabia.  To what extent Muhammad bin Salmaan, the reigning clown prince,  is willing to continue to finance that organization is anybody’s guess at this stage.  Notwithstanding the finance issue, it appears clear that the U.S. is prepared to do all that is necessary to preserve the terrorism in Syria through the offices of Nusra.  This is a shameful day in American history.

The Tiger Division, led by Maj. Gen. Suhayl Al-Hassan, is massing at the borders of the East Ghouta.  I have been informed that the division comprised of over 11,000 soldiers which also fields improved T-72 tanks with Saraab 2 anti missile equipment is preparing for the last push to eradicate Jaysh Al-Islam, Nusra and Faylaq Al-Sham once and for all.  The battle could start at any moment.  I suspect that once Jaysh Al-Islam has been vanquished, General Al-Hassan will be tasked with wiping out Nusra and allied terrorists in Idlib.  How the U.S.will help Nusra will be most indicative of Washington’s dirty hands.

Syria’s vaunted Popular Defense militia is entering ‘Afreen as I write.  The Turks, who have no experienced field commanders, (Erdoghan having jailed or cashiered almost all of them) have threatened to strike Syria’s pro-government militias since, by Turkish logic,  they will be protecting PKK fighters.  This is an interesting development seeing ‘Afreen is Syrian territory.  Now we will see how Russia reacts if Syrian forces are hit by the Turk army.  Of interest also is how Iran, which has a mutual defense pact with Syria, will respond if the Turks trigger the pact.  So far, Iran has been extremely critical of Ankara’s actions in the north of Syria.  We at SyrPer do not believe the Turks have the muscle for a new war to their south.  While we have deep suspicions about the Kurds, they are, after all, Syrian citizens who look to Damascus for help and protection.

It is a virtual certainty that Donald Trump has no idea about what is going on in Syria or Iraq, for that matter.  He is consumed by a narcissistic obsession with how he is perceived globally.  As of today, the CIA is running foreign relations for the United States without any involvement by Rex Tillerson who seems clueless, rudderless, at sea.  These are the same CIA spooks who bet their world on overthrowing Dr. Assad.  They are now back with even more vitriol, pushing a Zionist neo-con agenda despite the radical changes on the ground.

The United States, as I wrote before, is in a fallback position in Syria.  With a large number of special operations soldiers helping the so-called Syrian Democratic Forces, they are especially vulnerable today.  Planning in Moscow and Damascus has shifted substantially from fighting a defeated ISIS to now extirpating U.S. forces from the country.  A lot will depend on Iraq’s cooperation with Damascus.  If the Iraqis deny the U.S. rights to fly over its territory, Washington will have to scrub any agreements with the Kurds in order to use Incirlik in Turkey.  It’s a mess.  The only other alternative, is the Zionist Terrorist State’s airbases which will bring about a potential WWIII or something truly horrible.  The U.S. has cornered itself.  It is trapped between a rock and a hard place with no perceivable way out.  Just as Afghanistan is sucking American energy, so will this latest adventure in Syria.  And it’s just beginning.

________________________________________________
NEWS AND COMMENT:

Mattis appears to be honest. Get this from my friend, Marcos Cruz Garcia:

https://www.mintpressnews.com/us-finally-admits-no-evidence-assad-used-sarin-gas/237615/

John Esq. sent me this great article from Newsweek, of all places, casting doubt about Syrian government’s use of CW:

http://www.newsweek.com/wheres-evidence-assad-used-sarin-gas-his-people-810123

Another fabulous article sent by John Esq. regarding the details of the encounter with the Zionist F-16:

 

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Here’s how Mueller’s latest indictment further discredits the Trump Dossier – By Alexander Mercouris (THE DURAN)

Trump Dossier alleges collusion between Trump Campaign and Russia but fails to report events which actually took place

As the days since Mueller’s latest indictment have passed, the failure of his investigation to make any claim of collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia has begun to sink in, even amongst some of Donald Trump’s most bitter enemies.

Even the Guardian – arguably the most fervid of Donald Trump’s British media critics, and the most vocal supporter of the Russiagate conspiracy theory – has grudgingly admitted that Special Counsel Robert Mueller has “once again failed to nail Donald Trump”

There will be understandable disappointment in many quarters that the latest indictments delivered by Robert Mueller, the special counsel investigating Russian interference in the 2016 US presidential election, once again failed to nail Donald Trump. Although the charges levelled against 13 Russians and three Russian entities are extraordinarily serious, they do not directly support the central claim that Trump and senior campaign aides colluded with Moscow to rig the vote.

The Times of London meanwhile has admitted that the latest indictment contains “no smoking gun”

The Department of Justice, however, offered no confirmation to those still smarting from the election in Nov­em­ber 2016, who believe that, in the absence of Russian interference, Hillary Clinton would be in the White House today. Friday’s allegations offered no evidence that the outcome had been affected. Sir John Sawers, former head of MI6, said yesterday that Donald Trump’s victories in the key swing states were his own.

There was further comfort for Mr Trump, which he was quick to celebrate with a tweet. The investigation uncovered no evidence “that any American was a knowing participant in the alleged unlawful activity”. That includes, so far, anybody involved in the Trump campaign. If there is a smoking gun it has yet to emerge, though Robert Mueller’s investigation will grind on. Presi­dent Vladimir Putin is a malign and dangerous mischief maker. It has not been proved that he is an evil genius with the ability to swing a US election.

In fact the latest indictment when considered properly is a further huge nail in the coffin of the Russiagate conspiracy theory and in the already disintegrating credibility of the Trump Dossier, which is the foundation document for that theory.

Notwithstanding claims to the contrary, the Russiagate conspiracy theory is laid out in its most classic form in the Trump Dossier, and it is the Trump Dossier which remains the primary and indeed so far the only ‘evidence’ for it

This theory holds that Donald Trump was compromised by the Russians in 2013 when he was filmed by Russian intelligence performing an orgy in a hotel room in Moscow, and he and his associates Paul Manafort, Carter Page and Michael Cohen subsequently engaged in a massive criminal conspiracy with Russian intelligence to steal the election from Hillary Clinton by having John Podesta’s and the DNC’s emails stolen by Russian intelligence and passed on by them for publication by Wikileaks.

Belief in this conspiracy dies hard, and an interesting article in the Financial Times by Edward Luce provides a fascinating example of the dogged determination of some people to believe in it.  Writing about Mueller’s latest indictment Luce has this to say

……Mr Mueller’s report hints at more dramatic possibilities by corroborating contents of the “Steele dossier”, which was compiled in mid-2016 by the former British intelligence officer, Christopher Steele — long before the US intelligence agencies warned of Russian interference. Mr Steele, who is in hiding, alleged that the Russians were using “active measures” to support the campaigns of Mr Trump, Bernie Sanders, the Democratic runner-up to Hillary Clinton, and Jill Stein, the Green party nominee. Mr Mueller’s indictment confirms that account.

……Likewise, Mr Mueller’s indictment confirms the Steele dossier’s claim that Russia wished to “sow discord” in the US election by backing leftwing as well as rightwing groups. Among the entities run by the IRA were groups with names such as “Secured Borders”, “Blacktivists”, “United Muslims of America” and “Army of Jesus”.

What is fascinating about these words is that none of them are true.

Christopher Steele is not in hiding.

The actual Trump Dossier does not allege “that the Russians were using “active measures” to support the campaigns of Mr Trump, Bernie Sanders, the Democratic runner-up to Hillary Clinton, and Jill Stein, the Green party nominee”.

Bernie Sanders is mentioned by the Trump Dossier only in passing.  By the time the Trump Dossier’s first entries were written Bernie Sanders’s campaign was all but over and it was already clear that Hillary Clinton would be the Democratic Party’s candidate for the Presidency.

Jill Stein is mentioned – again in passing – only once, in a brief mention which refers to her now infamous visit to Russia where she attended the same dinner with President Putin as Michael Flynn.

Nor does the Trump Dossier anywhere claim that “Russia wished to “sow discord” in the US election by backing leftwing as well as rightwing groups”.

On the contrary the Trump Dossier is focused – exclusively and obsessively – on documenting at fantastic length the alleged conspiracy between the Russian government and the campaign of the supposedly compromised Donald Trump to get him elected US President.

Supporters of the Russiagate conspiracy theory need to start facing up to the hard truth about the Trump Dossier.

At the time the Trump Dossier was published in January 2017 little was known publicly about the contacts which actually took place between members of Donald Trump’s campaign and tranisiton teams and the Russians during and after the election.

Today – a full year later and after months of exhaustive investigation – we know far more about those contacts.

What Is striking about those contacts is how ignorant the supposedly high level Russian sources of the Trump Dossier were about them.

Thus the Trump Dossier never mentions Jeff Sessions’s two meetings with Russian ambassador Kislyak, or the various conversations Michael Flynn is known to have had with Russian ambassador Kislyak, some of which apparently took place before Donald Trump won the election.

The Trump Dossier never mentions Jared Kushner’s four conversations with Russian ambassador Kislyak, including the famous meeting between Kislyak and Kushner in Trump Tower on 1st December 2016 (which Michael Flynn also attended) over the course of which the setting up of a backchannel to discuss the crisis in Syria is supposed to have been discussed (Kushner denies that it was).

The last entry of the Trump Dossier is dated 13th December 2016 ie. twelve days after this meeting took place, and given its high level a genuinely well-informed Russian source familiar with the private ongoing discussions in the Kremlin might have been expected to know about it.

Nor does the Trump Dossier mention the now famous meeting in Trump Tower between the Russian lawyer Natalia Veselnitskaya and Donald Trump Junior – which Paul Manafort and Jared Kushner also attended – which took place on 9th June 2016.

This despite the fact that the Trump Dossier’s first entry is dated 20th June 2016 i.e. eleven days later, so that if this meeting really was intended to set the stage for collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia – as believers in the Russiagate conspiracy theory insist – a well informed Russian source with access to information from the Kremlin would be expected to know about it.

Nor does the Trump Dossier have anything to say about George Papadopoulos, the Trump campaign aide who had the most extensive contacts with the Russians, and whose drunken bragging in a London bar is now claimed by the FBI to have been its reason for starting the Russiagate inquiry.

In fact George Papadopoulos is not mentioned in the Trump Dossier at all.

This despite the fact that members of Russia’s high powered Valdai Discussion Club were Papadopoulos’s main interlocutors in his discussions with the Russians, and Igor Ivanov – Russia’s former foreign minister, and a senior albeit retired official genuinely known to Putin – was informed about the discussions also, making it at least possible that high level people in the Russian Foreign Ministry and conceivably in the Russian government and in the Kremlin were kept informed about the discussions with Papadopoulos, so that a genuinely well-informed Russian source might be expected to know about them.

By contrast none of the secret meetings between Carter Page and Michael Cohen and the Russians discussed at such extraordinary length in the Trump Dossier have ever been proved to have taken place.

Now Special Counsel Mueller has provided further details in his latest indictment of actual albeit unknowing contacts between members of the Trump campaign and various Russian employees of Yevgeny Prigozhin’s Internet Research Agency, LLC, apparently both in person and online.

The Trump Dossier has however nothing to say about these contacts either, just as it has nothing to say about the Internet Research Agency, LLC, Yevgeny Prigozhin, or the entire social media campaign set out in such painstaking detail by Special Counsel Mueller in his indictment.

The only conclusion possible is that if the Trump Dossier’s Russian sources actually exist (about which I am starting to have doubts) then they were extraordinarily ignorant of what was actually going on.

That of course is consistent with the fact – recently revealed in the heavily redacted memorandum sent to the Justice Department by Senators Grassley and Lindsey Graham – that many of the sources of the Trump Dossier were not actually Russian but were American.

John Helmer – the most experienced journalist covering Russia, and a person who has a genuine and profound knowledge of the country – made that very point – that many of the Trump Dossier’s sources were American rather than Russian – in an article he published on 18th January 2017, ie. just days after the Trump Dossier was published.

In that same article Helmer also made this very valid point about the Trump Dossier’s compiler Christopher Steele

Steele’s career in Russian intelligence at MI6 had hit the rocks in 2006, and never recovered. That was the year in which the Russian Security Service (FSB) publicly exposed an MI6 operation in Moscow. Russian informants recruited by the British were passed messages and money, and dropped their information in containers fabricated to look like fake rocks in a public park.   Steele was on the MI6 desk in London when the operation was blown. Although the FSB announcement was denied in London at the time, the British prime ministry confirmed its veracity in 2012.Read more on Steele’s fake rock operation here, and the attempt by the Financial Times to cover it up by blaming Putin for fabricating the story.

Given that Steele was outed by Russian intelligence in 2006, with his intelligence operation in Russia dismantled by the FSB that year, it beggars belief that ten years later in 2016 he still had access to high level secrets in the Kremlin.

What we now know in fact proves that he did not.

I only remembered Helmer’s 18th January 2017 article about the Trump Dossier after I wrote my article about Senator Grassley’s and Senator Lindsey Graham’s memorandum to the Justice Department on 6th February 2018.

This is most unfortunate, not only because Grassley’s and Lindsey Graham’s memorandum resoundingly vindicates Helmer’s reporting, but because it shows that a genuine expert about Russia like Helmer was able to spot immediately the holes in the Trump Dossier, which only now – a whole year and months of exhaustive investigations later – are starting to be officially admitted.

For my part I owe Helmer an apology for not referencing his 18th January 2017 article in my article of 6th February 2018.  I should have done so and I am very sorry that I didn’t.

I have spent some time discussing the Trump Dossier because despite denials it remains the lynchpin of the whole Russiagate scandal and of the claims of collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia.

Heroic efforts to elevate Papadopoulos’s case and the meeting between Donald Trump Junior and the Russian lawyer Natalia Veselnitskaya into ‘evidence’ of collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia which exists supposedly independently of the Trump Dossier fail because as I have discussed extensively elsewhere (see here and here) they in fact do no such thing.

Despite Edward Luce’s desperate efforts to argue otherwise, Mueller’s latest indictment far from corroborating the Trump Dossier, has done the opposite.

With the Trump Dossier – the lynchpin of the whole collusion case – not just unverified and discredited but proved repeatedly to have been completely uninformed about events which were actually going on, why do some people persist in pretending that there is still a collusion case to investigate?

The Duran

 

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Russian senators list 100 examples of US meddling in foreign nations’ affairs – by RT

Russian senators list 100 examples of US meddling in foreign nations’ affairs
A Russian parliamentary commission has prepared a report that lists over 100 cases of US interference in other nations’ internal affairs since the end of World War Two.

We have counted approximately 100, about 101 or 102 absolutely verified and recorded facts of American involvement in the sovereign affairs of over 60 UN member-nations since the approval of this organizations’ charter that bans any such involvement – since 1946 till this day,” the head of the upper house Commission for Protection of State Sovereignty, Senator Andrey Klimov, was quoted as saying on Monday by TASS.

The senator named one particular example from the list – the 1973 coup d’état in Chile that installed Augusto Pinochet as a military dictator and as a result of which the country’s parliament was dissolved and numerous human rights violations were committed. “Every such fact has a multitude of episodes of the US interference,” he noted.

Klimov told TASS that the annual report would be finalized and released at the end of the month, and added that senators were preparing a different edition which would be distributed among a “closed circle of persons” and which would not be released to the wider public in the foreseeable future.

At the same time, Klimov noted that not all cases of US involvement in other nations’ affairs could be formally described as such and thus were not included in the report. As an example, he named Donald Trump’s inauguration speech, in which the US president said that Washington was constantly meddling in other nations’ affairs and called for an end to such practices. “And these were the words of an inaugurated president, the commander-in-chief of the US military forces, who had been briefed through all files,” he said.

Another example was the 2003 speech of George W. Bush in which the then-US president urged change in political regimes in between 40 and 50 foreign countries.

The upper house commission for monitoring and countering foreign nations’ attempts to influence internal Russian politics was formed in mid-2017. Back then, upper house Speaker Valentina Matvienko said that attempts to meddle in Russia’s internal affairs had been ongoing for years and that up to $100 billion was sent to Russia from abroad annually to sponsor “political activities.” “We know the consequences of such meddling… and will not allow anyone to threaten Russia’s sovereignty,” she said.

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US must immediately leave area it controls in southern Syria — Lavrov – By RT

US must immediately leave area it controls in southern Syria — Lavrov
US troops must immediately shut down their zone of control in southern Syria in the area of Al-Tanf, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov suggested when asked what should be done to help the Syrian peace settlement.

Lavrov was referring to an area on Syria’s border with Jordan and Iraq, which the US declared to be under its protection last year. Among other things, it contains the Rukban refugee camp. The facility is apparently used by radical militants, including members of UN-designated terrorist group best known by its former name Al-Nusra Front, to recover and raid other parts of Syria, Lavrov said at the Valdai Club conference on the Middle East in Moscow. The US is turning a blind eye to such abuses of its protection, he added.

“Inside the Al-Tanf zone, which the Americans unilaterally declared under their protection, and inside the refugee camp jihadists are regularly reported to recover strength. On several occasions they conducted raids from there into other territory of the Syrian Arab Republic. This zone must be shut down immediately,” the Russian minister said.

“Our colleagues from the UN for some reason are hesitant to say that humanitarian convoys cannot get into this US-controlled area because the US would not guarantee their safety,” Lavrov added. “Instead they focus attention on the humanitarian situation in Idlib or Eastern Ghouta.”

The minister added Russia has mounting evidence that the US has no intention to oppose this jihadist group in earnest.

The response came after a question from the think tank International Crisis Group about what “Russia could do more” in Syria to prevent an escalation of violence there, particularly between Iran and Israel. Lavrov said the question should be “what the US could refrain from doing” in Syria and that the answer was “stop playing dangerous games” and cease trying to partition the nation.

The Americans “in the territories they patronize east of the Euphrates River and all the way to the state border with Iraq create governing bodies which are designed by intention to have no links with Damascus,” he pointed out.

Lavrov also commented on the situation in the southwestern part of Syria on the border with Jordan and Israel – which was designated as a “de-escalation zone” by Syria, Russia, Turkey and Iran – and Israel’s interests in Syria. Israel accuses Iran of using proxy forces to seize control of parts of southern Syria, including those along the border, and has threatened to use military force to reverse the situation.

“We negotiated the creation of this zone with Jordan and the US and it’s not a secret that our Israeli colleagues were informed about what we discussed,” he said. “Now to implement everything we had agreed on we have to focus on one particular article, which said all parties to the agreement would work to make sure that no non-Syrian forces were present inside and near this de-escalation zone.”

The Russian diplomat added that the US carving out the Al-Tanf area was the exact opposite – a unilateral move that no other party agreed to.

The dispute between Israel and Iran, Lavrov said, certainly complicated the situation in Syria, and Moscow believes both parties need to take steps to defuse it. For instance, Iran’s statements that Israel was a Zionist entity that needs to be destroyed are perceived as absolutely unacceptable in Russia. But neither does Russia see as constructive Israel’s policy of turning every problem in the region into a vehicle for opposing Iran, he said.

“This is what we see in Syria, this is what we see in Yemen, and even the latest developments around the Palestinian issue, including Washington’s decision to recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s exclusive capital, are to a large extent caused by the very same anti-Iranian bias,” Lavrov explained. “Both attitudes pose a risk of further damaging the situation in the region, which is already very pitiful.”

The Russian minister suggested that Israel and Iran should try to address their differences – including the latest flare-up involving an Iranian drone destroyed by Israel after reportedly violating the airspace of the Jewish state – by taking them to the UN for proper resolution. “Otherwise we will be rolling down the slope to a situation in which every incident is simply blamed on the other party and used to justify military action.”

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Israeli PM’s telecom cronies busted as corruption scandal continues to unfold – By SPUTNIK

netanyahu

© Associated Press / Matt Dunham
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu

The Israel Securities Authorities has opened an investigation into allegations that the country’s largest telecommunications company Bezeq received benefits so as to deal with positive media coverage of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

Several senior executives from the Israeli telecommunications giant Bezeq, including two close associates of Benjamin Netanyahu, have been arrested as part of the corruption probe into the Israeli Prime Minister’s alleged corruption activities.

The detainees include Communications Ministry Director General Shlomo Filbert, who is accused of handing confidential documents to Bezeq to add to the company’s favorable treatment and provide positive media coverage of Netanyahu.

Police also nabbed Shaul Elovitch, the controlling shareholder of Bezeq, who is suspected of communicating with the Israeli Prime Minister.

netanyahu scandals

© Reuters / Amir Cohen
The logo of Bezeq Israeli Telecommunication Corp Ltd, the country’s largest telecom group, is seen outside their headquarters in Tel Aviv, Israel June 21, 2017

The arrests came just a few days after the Israeli police said that they had collected enough evidence to support claims that Netanyahu committed fraud and took bribes. The police promised to hand over the relevant investigative materials and its indictment recommendations to Israeli Attorney General Avichai Mandelblit.

Right now, Netanyahu faces charges of accepting expensive gifts from wealthy supporters, in the form of cigars, champagne and jewelry in return for advancing their interests.

The second investigation looks into allegations that Netanyahu arranged to obtain favorable coverage from the popular newspaper Yedioth Ahronoth in return for creating problems for its rival, the Israel Hayom paper.

Additionally, the Israeli Prime Minister may be accused of alleged involvement in a multimillion dollar submarine deal with German shipbuilder ThyssenKrupp. Netanyahu vehemently denies any wrongdoing, claiming that he is the victim of a smear campaign launched by his political opponents.

Late December saw thousands of people protesting in the streets in Tel Aviv to demand Netanyahu’s resignation over alleged corruption, in the “March of Shame” demonstration which continued for the fourth consecutive week at the time.

The beginning of January saw the continuation of anti-corruption protests against Netanyahu, with more than 2,000 people taking to the streets in Tel Aviv.

Comment: Even Israelis are getting fed up with Bibi

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Google, Amazon Patents Reveal How Your Smart Devices Will Tell Them When You Shower… – By ANONYMOUS

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When Edward Snowden brought evidence of NSA’s unlawful spying to the fore, there was a limited outcry… but people came to accept this infringement of privacy, and lived with it.

Then there was the spying Microsoft Windows 10 brought to your PC in 2015, and people were content to simply “opt out” of it. It’s free and better than windows 8, no brainer. After we opt out of the spying, surely we can trust the smart people in charge to respect our decision right???  Not so fast.

That year we found out that our smart TVs were spying on us too, literally listening in on conversations as admitted by Samsung in their privacy policy which stated that “if your spoken words include personal or other sensitive information, that information will be among the data captured and transmitted to a third party through your use of Voice Recognition“. But that was fine, you could “opt out” too!…

Last year Wikileaks revealed that the CIA and MI5 had devised a program designed specifically to manipulate smart TVs into becoming literal Orwellian Telescreens that could pretend to be turned off but secretly and perpetually record video and audio.

You can’t opt out of government spying, a lesson that the protagonist of Orwell’s 1984 would find out that there was no part of his home that was safe from the telescreen. The program’s name was Weeping Angel, which is probably a reference to the uninformed consumers in the final phases of surrendering the last vestige of their freedom to Big Brother.

Now, surprise surprise, Google and Amazon – creators of two of the most popular voice “assistants” (spies) – are also getting in on the spying-for-profit-oops-the-NSA-hacked-us-it’s-not-our-fault scheme.

Advocacy group Consumer Watchdog recently analysed patent applications filed by Google and Amazon for future smart devices and found that these voice spies listen in on, and analyze, your conversations even when you haven’t issued the “wakeword”, the “Alexa” or “Ok Google” command.

The patents reveal that Google and Amazon plan on using the stolen information to build consumer profiles in order to better target advertising. Future iterations of the devices would be able to identify statements related to interests and hobbies, allowing Amazon to send advertisements for products that fit these criteria to consumers.

Worse, the assistants can differentiate between different voices so that they can build up a completely different case-file for all your family members. With smart home devices synced to them, they know what you’re doing… all the time… Consumer Watchdog notes:

“In 2014, as Amazon was preparing to roll out its Echo smart speaker, the company patented an algorithm that could listen to human speech, including phone conversations, for statements of interest such as “I love skiing”. The algorithm would then process the statements into keywords that could be used to target advertising.

“The patent describes transmitting the keywords to Amazon servers as text, which could allow the company to spy on conversations while technically keeping its promise to only store and analyze audio recordings that a user intends to share.”

The same, and worse, is true for Google, which has filed multiple patents. The technologies detailed in the patent applications include:

“A method for inferring users’ showering habits and targeting advertising based on that and other data. Dozens of patent applications for Google’s smart home devices detail scenarios in which Google may share data from smart home devices with third parties, including businesses, who can then use the data to make inferences about users’ sleeping, cooking, entertainment, and showering schedules.

“A particularly troubling patent application describes how Google could use video feeds from smart devices to determine users’ behaviors and characteristics, including “gender, age, fashion-taste, style, mood, known languages, preferred activities, and so forth”. The patent application describes smart devices that target advertisements based on the title of the book by a user’s bedside, the presence of a guitar or basketball in the room, and the face of a famous actor on a user’s t-shirt.”

Don’t be evil Google? With Google’s Android running on most smartphones and the Google Assistant snooping about on default, able to run cameras and voice recorders all the time… I’m not sure if selling my shower schedule (best not to bring one’s phone into the toilet either) to the highest bidder (a ninja assassin? ) or losing such info to an organisation that could blackmail me can be considered non-evil activity.

“Google and Amazon executives want you to think that Google Home and Amazon Echo are there to help you out at the sound of your voice. In fact, they’re all about snooping on you and your family in your home and gathering as much information on your activities as possible,” said John M. Simpson, Consumer Watchdog’s Privacy and Technology Project Director. “You might find them useful sometimes, but think about what you’re revealing about yourself and your family, and how that information might be used in the future.”

It seems we are at the point where not only have we gotten used to the age of corporate/government spying, some of us have paid good money for the perpetual sensation of being watched.


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The Problem is America: The Malignant Cultural Hegemony – By Phil Butler (New Eastern Outlook )

Author: Phil Butler

 

 

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What is wrong with the American people? After several years of horrific policy toward the waking world, democracy’s standard bearers seem to be drowning in a lake of selfishness. Distracted, apathetic, or simply dumbed and numbed by unrelenting propaganda, the most admired society on Earth has turned to a wriggling mush of diverging ideals. I fear that American have become what we ultimately deplored, just another despicable cultural hegemony. Here’s a short brief on the matter.

A recent article by James Carden at The Nation prompted me to discuss this unsavory truth today. The title of the piece, “Trump’s Syria Policy: Perpetual War Without Debate”, provides a stunning introduction for my “proofs” of America’s war on peace. But, the reader need not read Carden’s story to understand that the United States has been transformed into a lawless international pirate state. This paragraph is evidence enough our government has gone rogue:

“Currently there are, in the absence of congressional authorization and in violation of international law (since the United States was not attacked by Syria, nor are US troops there at the invitation of the sovereign Syrian government), an estimated 2,000 American troops based in Syria. Given this, it was odd, though hardly surprising, when major US media outlets like CNN carried the news that American occupying troops were acting “defensively” last week when the United States launched a series of strikes against regime forces, killing over 100 Syrian soldiers, in retaliation for an attack on a headquarters of US-allied Syrian Democratic Forces in Khusham. Reports emerged this week that perhaps dozens, if not hundreds, of Russian mercenaries were also killed in the US attack.”

We Are the Enemy

It’s high time we face the fact that successive administrations have been operating outside the Constitution of the United States of America. There’s no arguing that Obama and Trump blatantly exceeded their authority under that founding document, as well as under the War Powers Resolution of 1973, which limits executive authority to conduct such military actions. However horrific this fact may be thought, these actions are only a symptom of a much deadlier, and more pitiful causal agent – a society in shameful decay, one indiscernible from those of the last days of Rome or Hitler’s Third Reich. What we have witnessed these last thirty years is the corruption and destruction of a dream – a dream very few can even recall. The Cold War, Korea, Vietnam, Iran-Contra, Afghanistan, and Iran and a dozen regime changes taught Americans nothing whatsoever. Today, my people scarcely even noticed the tens of millions ruined or dead on account of America’s corrupt policies toward the world. Not even the Clintons’ graft and misdeeds seem to register as more than a sound bit these days. Rather than parroting the painfully obvious, I should think the reader is wanting more explanation of how in the hell this happened.

For those unfamiliar, it was Karl Marx who gave us the notion of “cultural hegemony,” which is the domination of a culturally diverse society by the ruling class. In such a system of control, the ruling class manipulates the culture of society, altering and shaping the beliefs, explanations, perceptions, values, and mores in such a way as to form a social construct beneficial only to this ruling class. Make no mistake, this is exactly where American society is today – managed to the point of being automated. And while we all grew up whispering how “The Man” was controlling everything, hardly anyone in my country will stand up and raise a voice professing this truth. Please my fellow Americans, do not hazard to argue here – we all know this is the truth we do not want the world to know. The technocrats I harp about, the ruling elites who hide behind their invulnerability, and the local despots allowed to run their urban games, the wheelers and dealers, and the apathetic masses who tolerate them – we’re finally at the predictable end my friends. Rex Tillerson the Exxon king armed with the mighty lever of American military might, now there is a fearsome vision for you, a moving picture image of literal cultural imperialism. “We need gas, we’ll take gas, don’t you try and stop us.”

The Rotten Seed of Mediocrity

And now you might ask; “Where did we go wrong?” Was the assassination of JFK or some other crisis the beginning? Well, the beginning of America’s transformation into a dastardly hegemony does not really matter now. We are here. It is helpful to look at a few signposts though, just in order that we tweak the consciousness of a few. Maybe some analysts would point to Bill Clinton’s role in destroying Yugoslavia. While others will venture back to Lyndon Johnson and America’s biggest disaster, that Vietnam War. But, I can recall a more recent societal disaster for American known as the “No Child Left Behind Act of 2001 (NCLB),” first proposed by former President George W. Bush, and signed into law January 8th, 2002. This disastrous piece of legislation ensured 13 years of dumbing and numbing of America’s youth, with aftereffects reaching into the distant future. NCLB provided Bush and Obama with a monetary lever to blackmail educators into retarding the educational excellence that had made America the envy of the world once. NCLB produced a generation of Americans who can read well and do mid-level math, but who are also social science cripples. We created a generation of sociopaths who could read iPhone instructions and count well. NCLB drowned the excellent student and threw a life preserver for any child who wanted a free ride. NCLB was scrapped just before Obama left office, and it was replaced by Every Student Succeeds Act, which was like closing the gate after the cows have already left. Please understand, the ruling elite have no interest in a new intelligent society, think about it.

After over a decade of American kids supposedly being pushed forward, the United States ranks 40th in Mathematics, 25th in Science, and 24th in reading behind many of the countries Donald Trump calls “shit holes.” According to the Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) Latvia, Vietnam, Russia, and even Singapore (1st) beat American students out in math. Even more telling than recent indicators, this report by AARP speaks of an American education system half a century ago that was second to none. When I was a student Americans consistently ranked in the top two spots on the world stage, today 10th is considerate a success by leadership. We need not argue here about test scores and the exactitudes of America’s education system to understand the impacts of this “cultural hegemony” exacted onto Americans. The disintegration of America’s former ideals grows more apparent as we look at such things as the WJP Rule of Law Index, where the US is currently 18th position behind Singapore and others. And if we look at the “Economic Freedom of the World” results we find the U.S. in 16th position behind even Jordan and Chile. Even in areas where America is perceived to excel, such as in press freedom, the country ranks far below many third world or emerging states. Finally, when we examine such measures as the Global Peace Index we see America running 114th behind Rwanda. Yes, you read that correctly, the same Rwanda infamous for genocide.

“Dumbness, to paraphrase the late senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan, has been steadily defined downward for several decades, by a combination of heretofore irresistible forces. These include the triumph of video culture over print culture; a disjunction between Americans’ rising level of formal education and their shaky grasp of basic geography, science and history; and the fusion of anti-rationalism with anti-intellectualism.” – Susan Jacoby, author of The Age of American Unreason

“Sieg Heil” – Hail Stupidity

How many remember the newsreel reruns of Adolf Hitler standing before a multitude of Nazis chanting “Sieg Heil” – the minions of evil thrusting their hands forward in unison to perform the Hitler salute that was obligatory in the Nazi Reich. I remember this as I read the comments in every “Putin bashing” article I read. We have returned to those days, rest assured, for every western media broadcast of Putin hate is emblematic. Putin has a cold, and the new Nazis in America wishes him dead or worse. Most of you probably do not read comments, but you do know the western mainstream versions resonated with a tone we’ve become familiar with. Putin, they said, is either on his death bed or he’d been kidnapped by Pussy Riot fans. Putin is this, or Putin is that, but always Putin is jeered, hated, and detested for reasons that are manufactured. Reading the headlines and the comments underneath, this is was what compelled me to study my country’s malignant stupidity. You’d be amazed how many readers of American or British magazines want Putin dead. Meanwhile, Russia eliminates the same people who killed in Paris, London, Brussels, and even the United States. Can you grasp the meaning in all this? Think about Putin smashing ISIL for humanity, and then superimpose this Wikipedia list of atrocities committed by them. If you’ve a conscience and a brain you are asking; “How can this be?”

“Goose pimples rose all over me, my hair stood on end, my eyes filled with tears of love and gratitude for this greatest of all conquerors of human misery and shame, and my breath came in little gasps. If I had not known that the Leader would have scorned such adulation, I might have fallen to my knees in unashamed worship, but instead I drew myself to attention, raised my arm in the eternal salute of the ancient Roman Legions and repeated the holy words, “Heil Hitler!” – George Lincoln Rockwell, founder of the American Nazi Party

I will tell you how this came to be, if Donald Trump was elected by “deplorables” – the liberal Millennials and other world order minions are mental sodomites, even when compared to the most ignorant and bigoted southern redneck. No wonder dead and displaced Syrians matter not. We are a Titanic shipwreck adrift, adrift until we strike a reef and sink. Looking on from clearer eyes, I see now how Karl Marx was a genius in his theories of cultural hegemony, and how unchecked capitalism is wrecking our world. In America, as was the case in Russia about the time of the Czars, the masses depended on working class intellectuals to insulate/defend them from elitist control. So, George Bush’s NCLB dumbing virtually assured there could be no “working class intellectuals.” Meanwhile, those decent citizens who might have called out the ruling class’ pollical pawns, they’ve been bought off with other aspects of this new dominant ideology of “perceived” empowerment. And in this false empowerment we see domestic and foreign policy goals uncovered. The Tillerson/Exxon war we are about to witness, the utter destruction of traditional values, rampant consumerism taken to new heights, and the myth of American exceptionalism which drugs the high functioning chimpanzees – this is the bitter and stark reality of a once great nation. We must see this, lest we be doomed to it.

I leave you with this from the imminent astronomer, cosmologist, astrophysicist, astrobiologist, author, science popularizer, and science communicator, Carl Sagan:

“The dumbing down of American is most evident in the slow decay of substantive content in the enormously influential media, the 30 second sound bites (now down to 10 seconds or less), lowest common denominator programming, credulous presentations on pseudoscience and superstition, but especially a kind of celebration of ignorance.” Carl Sagan

Phil Butler, is a policy investigator and analyst, a political scientist and expert on Eastern Europe, he’s an author of the recent bestseller “Putin’s Praetorians” and other books. He writes exclusively for the online magazine “New Eastern Outlook.”
https://journal-neo.org/2018/02/18/the-problem-is-america-the-malignant-cultural-hegemony/

Arrogance: Former CIA chief Woolsey says US meddles in election of other countries ‘for their own good’ (Video) – By Alex Christoforou – The Duran (SOTT)

James Woolsey

© Roger L. Wollenberg/UPI
Former Director of Central Intelligence R. James Woolsey, Jr.

The hubris is amazing.

Former CIA chief James Woolsey was on Fox News to discuss how those devilish Russians meddled in America’s democracy by posting messages on Twitter and Facebook, forgetting about all the CIA coups, false flags, and election meddlings he oversaw when running the CIA.

The hypocrisy was so thick that when Laura Ingraham asked Woolsey if the US ever meddled in elections, the response (and laughter from both of them) was telling…

Comment: The neocons had Woolsey planted near Trump a the beginning of his term, but he didn’t stick. More Woolsey gems:

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