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Are Zionist terrorist settlers backed by the Israeli regime?

Press TV

After the burning alive of 18-month-old Ali Dawabsheh by a fanatical Zionist settler, the world has reacted with outrage.

The attack was so horrendous that even Israeli leader Benjamin Netanyahu distanced himself from it, calling it an act of terrorism.

But on today’s show we will be asking to what extent Israel is responsible for the activities of its extremists. Are these fanatical terrorists really just a few bad apples, as Netanyahu would have us believe?

Or are they the product of decades of deliberate Zionist policy to colonize stolen land?

August 21, 2015 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Video | , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Let’s Bomb Libya Again!

By Brian CLOUGHLEY – Strategic Culture Foundation – 15.08.2015

The British prime minister, David Cameron, places great emphasis on how he is regarded by the public at home and internationally. His personal promotion machine is extensive  and highly-paid and his staff feed the media diligently with what they imagine to be positive slants on his character and actions (and with carefully selected photographs of his pretty wife). They provide advance copies of his speeches to favoured journalists with the annoying consequence that news broadcasts rarely report what the prime minister has just said on a topic.  They are futuristic and use the infuriating phrase “the prime minister will say today that” he will propose something or other.

The reason for this is that if there should be adverse reaction to whatever sparkling new initiative he wants to put forward to the public, then the spin-doctors can make hasty amendments in order to avoid upsetting people. It is school playground stuff, but then a great deal of British politics is playground oriented.

Unfortunately for his image, Cameron sometimes says things without first putting a finger in the water to test the temperature, and he also says things that betray his appalling ignorance of life.

One of the unrehearsed things he said that he may well regret in future concerns his unscripted policy on bombing people. It was reported on 27 July that he said “he was ready to order air strikes on Islamist militant targets in Libya and Syria to prevent attacks on the streets of Britain as he stepped up his rhetoric against Islamic State insurgents.” From this it is clear the British prime minister wants his country to go to war again and bomb Libya as it did last time he ordered air strikes on that ill-fated country.

It was Cameron who was responsible for Britain’s enthusiastic participation in the 2011 aerial bombing and rocketing that destroyed Libya. In March 2011 he declared that “Tough action is needed to ensure that people in Libya can lead their lives without fear and with access to the basic needs of life. That is what the Security Council requires, that is what we are seeking to deliver.” And he and his fellow thugs delivered catastrophe.

When the US-NATO onslaught ceased, after the murder of Libya’s president, we were told that the war had been successful in achieving democracy by bombing. It might be summed up in the sniggering proclamation of Ms Hillary Clinton, on CBS on 20 October 2011 that so far as the killing of Gaddafi was concerned “We came, we saw, he died.” What a truly civilised statement from the likely next president of the United States.

Two weeks before Ms Clinton’s humorous observation Mr Cameron said “I’m an optimist about Libya; I’ve been an optimist all the way through and I’m optimistic about the National Transitional Council and what they are able to achieve. I think when you look at Tripoli today, yes, of course, there are huge challenges — getting water to that city, making sure there is law and order — but actually so far, the cynics and the armchair generals have been proved wrong.”

The “cynics and armchair generals”  — who might be better described as experienced realists —  were right in predicting that the country’s collapse was inevitable; just as they had been right about forecasting chaos in Iraq and Afghanistan. 

On the other hand,  two highly placed intellectuals, Ivo Daalder, who was the US Permanent Representative on the NATO Council during the US-NATO war, and Admiral James G (“Zorba”) Stavridis, who was at that time US Supreme Allied Commander Europe (the military commander of NATO), agreed wholeheartedly with Cameron and wrote in 2012 in the journal Foreign Affairs that:

“NATO’s operation in Libya has rightly been hailed as a model intervention. The alliance responded rapidly to a deteriorating situation that threatened hundreds of thousands of civilians rebelling against an oppressive regime. It succeeded in protecting those civilians and, ultimately, in providing the time and space necessary for local forces to overthrow Muammar al-Gaddafi.”

According to these expert analysts, Libya was liberated and became a free country thanks to US-NATO. And they were supported by columnists like Nicholas Kristof of the New York Times who wrote that “Libya is a reminder that sometimes it is possible to use military tools to advance humanitarian causes.” What a bunch of buffoons. Their statements would be hilarious were they not so obscenely bizarre, because Libya has collapsed into anarchic ruin — as forecast by the “armchair generals” so despised by Cameron and all the others who have never heard a shot fired in anger.

In April 2015 the saintly International Red Cross observed that “The violence shows no sign of abating. Libya remains a patchwork of conflict, fuelled by a plethora of armed groups with varying allegiances and diverse agendas. Thousands have been killed; hundreds of thousands more have been displaced. The humanitarian situation continues to deteriorate.”

The unelected rabble that is supposed to be a government in Libya has its very own set of Guantanamo Bays in which Human Rights Watch reported that “the Libyan Army and the Interior Ministry’s Counter Terrorism Unit are holding about 450 “security detainees” in connection with the current conflict. Of those visited, 35 detainees told Human Rights Watch that they were tortured on arrest, under interrogation, or during their detention. Thirty-one said interrogators forced them to “confess” to crimes; four said that the authorities then broadcast their “confessions” on TV, leading to reprisal attacks on their families. All of the detainees Human Rights Watch interviewed said they had not been given access to lawyers, taken before a judge, or formally charged despite many months of detention.” From what freedom-loving democracy could the Libyans have learned to keep people in detention indefinitely without trial?

There have been no comments on the anarchic shambles in Libya by such as Nicholas Kristoff who rejoiced in 2011 that he had “Just arrived in Tripoli, Libya, after a wild ride from the Tunisian border. But Tripoli is festive, joyful and reasonably secure, its streets full of shoppers and honking cars, celebrating the end of Ramadan and the end of dictatorship. People are hugely welcoming to an American, and very grateful.”

When Gaddafi ruled Libya its citizens had ample water from many sources, not least being his “Great Man-Made River” which brought water from southern aquifers to the dense population of the coastal north.  But the US-NATO blitz damaged or destroyed so many power stations and pipeline facilities that this supply has all but ceased.

Amnesty International reports savage religious persecution (unknown in Gaddafi’s time) and records that “the international community has stood and watched as Libya has descended into chaos since the 2011 NATO military campaign ended, effectively allowing militias and armed groups to run amok.”  The Christian organisation Open Doors records that “Since the downfall of Gaddafi, the situation for Christians in Libya has deteriorated. The government claims all Libyans are Sunni Muslims; it is illegal to bring Arabic Bibles into the country or to evangelise.”

So much for David Cameron’s idiotic statement that “I’ve been an optimist all the way through” about Libya. This is the man who declared in 2011 that his bombing would ensure that Libyan citizens would have “access to the basic needs of life.”

During their war on Libya, Obama and Cameron jointly declared that “We are convinced that better times lie ahead for the people of Libya.” Tell that to the millions of Libyans whose lives have been wrecked by NATO’s “model intervention” as it’s described by the two imbeciles, Daalder and Stavridis, who did so much to destroy a nation.

Yet David Cameron imagines that more bombing will solve all the problems, and on 26 July the UK’s Daily Telegraph, whose editors and journalists are in the pockets of Cameron’s spin-doctors, was happy to disclose that “Mr Cameron has ordered officials to begin planning for a new intervention in Libya, which has become a haven for Isil jihadists.” Cameron “was asked if there was a case for strikes on Isil in Libya, where the gunman who massacred Britons in Tunisia was trained,” and replied “That is my job, my duty as Prime Minister if there is a specific threat and you can act to stop it, you should act to stop it wherever it is and you are allowed under international law to do exactly that. I think that is very important.”

The reason Libya has become a haven for fanatical loonies is because it was struck mercilessly in a seven month aerial blitz that destroyed its government and social infrastructure.  And the solution, according to those who attacked it in 2011, is to bomb, bomb and bomb again.

We live in a world of madness.

August 21, 2015 Posted by | Mainstream Media, Warmongering, Militarism | , , , , | 1 Comment

Chilcot could be sued over Iraq War report findings

RT | August 21, 2015

Sir John Chilcot fears a legal onslaught from those who are sharply criticized in his Iraq War Inquiry report and is refusing to be pressured into setting a concrete deadline for its release, a source familiar with the inquiry says.

Chilcot has refused to issue a precise timetable for publishing the report until all those whose actions are examined in its pages are given an opportunity to respond.

In the face of increasing pressure from Downing Street, reports surfaced on Thursday that the ex-civil servant and his panel considered resigning following what they perceive as unjust criticism.

However, a spokesperson for the panel later insisted resignations are not on the table.

Chilcot’s report, which is believed to total more than a million words, was initiated in 2009 and last took evidence in 2011.

The Privy Councilor, who headed the inquiry into Britain’s role in the Iraq War, had previously hinted delays were due to the ‘Maxwellization’ process, which offers those criticized an opportunity to respond to allegations levelled against them. He has been sharply criticized for failing to follow the example of other inquiry chiefs by issuing firm deadlines.

Senior legal figures say Chilcot could potentially sanction parties who are delaying the report’s release by threatening to reveal their identities in the final draft. But the inquiry chief stated in July he did not believe anyone had “taken an unreasonable length of time to respond.”

The head of Britain’s armed forces is expected to be among those criticized in Chilcot’s report over his conduct during the Iraq War.

General Sir Nicholas Houghton, who serves as Prime Minister David Cameron’s top military adviser, is among a slew of senior commanders to face criticism in the report.

Labour leadership frontrunner Jeremy Corbyn says he will publicly apologize for the Iraq War on behalf of the party if he becomes leader in September.

Corbyn confirmed to the Guardian on Friday that he would apologize to Britons for Labour’s “deception” in the run-up to the 2003 invasion. He also pledged to apologize to Iraqis for the suffering they in incurred in the 8-year war that followed.

Observers say such an apology would be a watershed moment for Labour, and would mark a significant departure from its foreign policy trajectory in recent years.

Chilcot was publicly criticized by retired High Court judge Baroness Butler-Sloss on Tuesday over the extensive delay to the publication of his report.

Butler-Sloss said she was frustrated the report had not been published while bereaved families await answers as to why Britain went to war.

Her intervention came a day after Labour leadership contender Yvette Cooper said Britain must not pursue further military action against Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS/ISIL) until Chilcot’s report is published.

Families of British troops killed during the Iraq war have launched a legal battle to force Chilcot to publish the findings. The relatives of deceased servicemen say the delay is “morally reprehensible.”

Draft reports of the inquiry’s findings rattled the British establishment in December, with senior Whitehall officials battling to sanitize its conclusions. Excerpts from the report, some of which are hundreds of pages long, were sent to those whose conduct during the conflict is under scrutiny.

One well-informed source told the Times the report’s findings are far more scathing than expected, and had sparked a legal firestorm.

Analysts also warned in 2014 that the omission of potentially crucial correspondence between former Prime Minister Tony Blair and ex-US President George W. Bush raised questions over the Chilcot inquiry’s legitimacy. They expressed specific concern over a culture of secrecy in Britain’s defense and security service establishment.

Senior figures central to the Chilcot inquiry, including Blair, are expected have their legal fees paid by British taxpayers. Expert analysis suggests the cost of the inquiry could surpass £11 million (US$17.25 million).

August 21, 2015 Posted by | Timeless or most popular, War Crimes | , , , | 1 Comment

The Douma Market Attack: a Fabricated Pretext for Intervention?

By Eric Draitser | CounterPunch | August 21, 2015

The August 16, 2015 attack on a market in the Syrian town of Douma, just outside the capital Damascus, has caused international outrage. Condemnations of the Syrian government have poured in from seemingly all corners of the globe as President Assad and the Syrian military have been declared responsible for the attack, convicted in the court of media opinion. Interestingly, such declarations have come well before any investigation has been conducted, and without any tangible evidence other than the assertions of the rebel spokespersons and anti-government sources. Indeed, there has been an embarrassing dearth of investigative questions asked as corporate media, who have been far from objective these last four and half years, have rushed to fit the facts to their long-standing narrative of “Assad the Butcher.”

This author fully understands that, in asking difficult questions, he will be called an “apologist,” an “Assad propagandist,” or some other such nonsense. Frankly, such name-calling means very little when compared to the suffering of Syrian people, and the untold brutality that will be visited upon them if the western corporate media and warmongers get their way and yet another imperialist so-called intervention is carried out in the name of “humanitarianism.” The goal is to ask the right questions, to cast doubt on the already solidifying propaganda narrative that will undoubtedly be used to justify still more war.

Those who work for peace must be prepared to interrogate the received truths of the media machine, to confront head on that which is uncomfortable, and to do so knowing that their motives are just. The victims of this war, both past and future, deserve nothing less.

Questioning the Douma Narrative

When carefully scrutinizing the documentary evidence of the attack, and comparing that to the claims made throughout western media, some troubling irregularities emerge. Not only do the claims seem to be exaggerated, but when placed within the historical context of this war, they seem to fit into a clear pattern of distortion and misinformation disseminated for political purposes, rather than objective reportage. Indeed, the raw footage taken on the scene goes a long way to contradicting some of the claims made by witnesses and “activists” (an interesting term in itself) often quoted in the media.

First, there is the allegation that more than 100 civilians were killed in an airstrike carried out by the Syrian military. There are certainly plenty of pictures that seem to bolster that claim, with debris scattered everywhere, aid workers carrying victims, and frightened civilians rushing around the destroyed marketplace. However, when one looks at the videos, even those provided by outlets such as The Guardian in the above linked article, one curious thing seems to be missing: bodies.

Indeed, it does seem odd that an airstrike could obliterate a crowded market on a Sunday, killing over a hundred people, and no videos or images would show bodies torn apart by the blast? One would expect to see mangled corpses, limbs scattered on the ground, pools of blood, etc. None of that seems visible.

Compare the Douma videos to those from Gaza on July 30, 2014 during Israel’s vicious war. An Israeli airstrike, which killed 15 people and injured more than 150, also hit a crowded market and caused horrific destruction. And in the videos, one sees bloodied bodies missing limbs, pools of blood on the street, and other gut-wrenching images. Or compare the Douma videos to those of the Christmas 2013 bombing of a crowded Baghdad market. The videos of that attack are gruesome, showing victims with heads partially blown off their bodies, legs attached to bodies by skin alone, lifeless corpses of children and other truly disturbing images.

All of these are conspicuously absent from any of the footage of the airstrike on Douma. Why? The various footage from the scene, repeated on both anti-Assad media (as seen here), and on mainstream western media (as seen here), shows no such images. Raw videos taken in the immediate aftermath of the attack also show no bodies (as seen here and here). There is footage showing bodies, however there is no discernible evidence that they were victims of the airstrike. Interestingly, all the victims shown in this video were military age males, rather curious if indeed this was an attack on a crowded market where presumably women and children would have been present. Indeed, in the midst of the ongoing war, there are fighters being killed on a daily basis, and it is entirely plausible that the wrapped bodies shown were fighters killed in some other fashion and simply presented to the camera as if they were victims of the airstrike.

To be fair, hours of research did uncover a total of one video, taken after the blast, showing the bodies of a handful of male victims. However, none of the signs of death by airstrike are visible; the bodies are all whole, no missing limbs, very little blood (unlike in the Gaza and Baghdad videos). A logical conclusion based on the available evidence would be that the men seen in the video died from the collapse of a building, presumably the destroyed building behind them.

While impossible to say exactly what happened, there is certainly no definitive evidence of an airstrike as a “deliberate massacre,” the argument trumpeted by western media and their Saudi- and Qatari-funded counterparts in the region. An objective examination of the evidence yields the distinct possibility that an airstrike was carried out on a building adjacent to the market. And yet, within hours of the attack, the narrative was seemingly already written: Assad carries out retribution against innocent civilians – a clear war crime.

Another important question that bears close scrutiny has to do with the victims themselves. Naturally, one does not want to make light of anyone killed or wounded in a war, but in trying to discern what is real and what is not, one must closely examine all evidence. And the victim list, as well as the treatment of the bodies raises more questions than it answers.

According to a list of victims names published in Arabic by the Doumaa Coordinating Committee, a pro-rebel group, there were 102 victims of the airstrike. After a translation, it is clear that the list reveals a grand total of three women among the 102 victims. It strains credulity that in a crowded market on a Sunday, with an alleged airstrike that could not distinguish between genders, there would be only three women among the dead. How is this possible? It seems likely that, as mentioned above, the list includes dead fighters who may have been killed in some other fashion – in battle, targeted by the Syrian military, etc. – who have simply been added to the list in order to bolster the narrative of a “massacre” in the market.

Additionally, we hear of the burial of victims in mass graves, still another puzzling development. As Reuters reported the day after the incident:

Sixty bodies were buried on Sunday night in two mass graves, said a spokesman for the Syrian Civil Defense force in Douma, a rescue service operating in rebel-held areas. Another 35 were buried on Monday, and the death toll was over 100, he said. “It was really difficult to identify the bodies of the martyrs. Some of them were burned to the bone, so we couldn’t add them to the documented list,” said the 28-year-old spokesman, who declined to give his real name for security reasons. His house was destroyed in the bombing, he added.

Naturally, the grizzly description given in the article elicits a strong emotional and visceral response. However, there is the troubling question as to why, if the Doumaa Coordinating Committee was able to compile a list of all the victims with their names, so many were still buried unceremoniously in mass graves. Even assuming that the number killed was correct, if it was difficult to identify the bodies with some so badly burned, they still managed to somehow identify them. If one accepts that this is true, then surely these bodies would have been given to the local families for burial. Yet they were not. Why not?

Typically the use of mass graves indicates a desire to quickly hide bodies which, if the media narrative on Douma were true, would seem unnecessary. At the very least, a real investigation into this incident would probe into the use of mass graves for the purposes of hiding key information, namely the identities of those killed.

An alternative theory, one which is supported by the evidence available, is that the Syrian military carried out an airstrike in the rebel stronghold town of Douma, and that the strike hit its target, a building housing a terrorist faction long since known to be in the city. This would explain the preponderance of men among the dead, the need for secrecy in burying the bodies, and the motive for the Syrian military striking the target.

Moreover, it is no secret exactly who has been operating in Douma and why they would be targeted. As the Carnegie Endowment noted in 2013:

The city of Douma has long been a stronghold of the insurgency, and several armed factions are active in the area, many of them with an Islamist bent. One, the Islam Brigade of the Alloush family, has over time grown quite a bit bigger than the others, particularly after it claimed responsibility for the July 18, 2012 attack against the National Security Office in Damascus, which killed several leading Syrian security figures. In March 2013, the main factions of the area joined forces in a local body called the Douma Mujahedin Council. The new group included the Islam Brigade, the Douma Martyrs’ Brigade, the Ghouta Lions Brigade, the East Ghouta Revolutionaries’ Brigade, the Lions of God Brigade, the Tawhid al-Islam Brigade, the Farouq Brigade [Liwa al-Farouq], the Shabab al-Hoda Brigade, the Seif al-Omawi Battalions, the Military Police Battalion, the Regime Protection Battalion, and the al-Ishara Battalion.

This key information is entirely omitted from the western media narrative about what happened in Douma, for obvious reasons. Namely, it undermines the meme that Assad’s forces carried out a criminal massacre of civilians as a form of collective punishment. Instead, it bolsters the claims by Syrian military spokespeople that the military targeted terrorist elements inside the city, just as they had done on a number of previous occasions, including as recently as June 2015. This point is critical because it demonstrates that this latest incident is part of an ongoing battle with these Douma factions, one which has seen countless rockets fired at Damascus from Douma and other surrounding suburbs.

Furthering this point is the fact that this attack in Douma was by no means the only incident of the day. There were in fact a series of clashes throughout the Damascus suburbs on Sunday August 16, the day of the incident. According to military sources, there were fierce clashes in East Ghouta with both Jaysh al-Islam (Army of Islam) and Faylaq al-Rahman (Al-Rahman Corps) which resulted in 11 Syrian soldiers killed and 21 militants killed. In addition, the city of Harasta, adjacent to Douma, was the scene of major clashes between the army and rebels.

Were one to present all these facts clearly, it becomes inescapable that whatever happened in Douma was part of an ongoing battle between the Syrian military and anti-government “rebels” in control of the town. But that fact is not at all convenient for the war narrative. It presents no justification for an expansion of the international campaign against Syria; it provides no pretext for the US or its allies to invoke their wretched, and utterly discredited, “Responsibility to Protect” doctrine. And ultimately that is the goal.

Exposing the “Humanitarian” Warmongers

The sad fact is that the dead in Douma are little more than props for those who would attempt to orchestrate yet another US-led war in the Middle East. These purported humanitarians would like to transform the incident into viable political currency to expand the war already raging in order to achieve the longed for regime change in Syria that thus far has been unattainable.

Kenneth Roth, Executive Director of Human Rights Watch, has been vocal in his support for a full scale war on Syria in the name of humanitarianism. Roth has repeatedly called for intervention against the legal government of Syria, having recently tweeted statements such as “Like Sarajevo, could Douma market slaughter finally force Assad to stop targeting civilians?” (@KenRoth, Aug 16). The implication of the statement is quite clear: there should be military intervention, such as the US-NATO war on Yugoslavia and later Serbia, in order to stop the “slaughter” of civilians. It should be noted that this tweet was posted within hours of the news of the incident in Douma long before any investigation.

Roth, and by extension his organization Human Rights Watch, further discredits whatever vestiges of impartiality he and HRW might have had with inane tweets such as “Douma market killings show how Assad chooses to fight this war: deliberately against civilians,” (@KenRoth, Aug 16), an obviously biased, and utterly unsubstantiated allegation. Roth could have absolutely no knowledge of either the identities of the dead, or the Syrian government’s motives, when he released the tweet the same day as the attack. He reveals himself here to be little more than a lackey for imperialism, a war hawk masquerading as a human rights defender.

Such dishonesty is nothing new for Roth and HRW however. As this author has previously argued, HRW is an utterly discredited organization that has on multiple occasions published blatantly false allegations about the war in Syria in order to justify a US-NATO intervention. One should of course recall the laughable, and now completely debunked, 2013 report from HRW entitled Attacks on Ghouta: Analysis of Alleged Use of Chemical Weapons in Syria, which falsely claimed that the Syrian government carried out the infamous chemical weapons attack of August 21, 2013.

The report, cited by many of the leading warmongers itching for intervention in Syria, has since been thoroughly discredited by the work of former UN weapons inspector Richard Lloyd and Prof. Theodore Postol of MIT who published their findings in a report entitled Possible Implications of Faulty US Technical Intelligence in the Damascus Nerve Agent Attack of August 21, 2013 which demonstrated unequivocally that the Syrian government could not have carried out the attack.

Additionally, Roth and HRW’s false narrative was again obliterated when Pulitzer Prize winning journalist Seymour Hersh published his exposé The Red Line and the Rat Line which firmly established the fact that the rebels were indeed capable of carrying out the attack on East Ghouta, and that they had help from Turkey, Saudi Arabia, and possibly other regional actors. This critical fact completely contradicted the assertions by Roth, HRW and the chorus of others who emphatically declared that only Assad’s forces were capable of carrying out the attack. Oops. Sorry Kenny, but your war pretext fell flat that time. One can only hope that it will once again.

But Roth and HRW are not the only ones making spurious claims in pursuit of the war agenda. Leave it to the Nobel Peace Prize winner President Obama and his White House to never let any tragedy go to waste. The day after the attack, National Security Council spokesperson Ned Price, speaking on behalf of the President, issued an official statement which “strongly condemns the deadly airstrikes yesterday by the Asad regime on a market in the Damascus suburb of Douma, where more than 100 people were killed and hundreds more injured, including scores of innocent women and children… These abhorrent actions underscore that the Asad regime has lost legitimacy and that the international community must do more to enable a genuine political transition.”

It is interesting to note here that the White House had already determined that “scores of innocent women and children” had been killed or injured. Where did this information come from? Certainly the casualty list released by the anti-Assad rebels did not indicate scores of dead women and children, nor did any of the videos of incident. It seems that, rather than conveying factual information, the White House was merely using the emotionally charged phrase “women and children” for propagandistic purposes, in order to be able to justify a possible military escalation against Damascus.

It is equally interesting to recall that just like Roth and HRW, the White House attempted to similarly capitalize on the August 21, 2013 chemical weapons attack for the purposes of pushing the US into war on Syria. In its now also debunked U.S. Government Assessment of the Syrian Government’s Use of Chemical Weapons on August 21, 2013, the White House stated that “The United States Government assesses with high confidence that the Syrian government carried out a chemical weapons attack in the Damascus suburbs on August 21, 2013. We further assess that the regime used a nerve agent in the attack.” Oops again.

But why should this author pick on the August 21, 2013 chemical weapons incident in attempting to critically examine the recent attack on Douma? Because it was at that moment, in the late summer of 2013, exactly two years ago, that the United States was on the verge of all out war against Syria and the Syrian people; because a narrative built on lies and distortions almost, yet again, pushed the US into war. Because this author marched in Times Square, New York City demanding that there be no war on Syria, then or ever. And because today, with so many lives already lost over these last four and half bloody years in Syria, peace-minded people cannot sit by and allow the US-NATO war machine and its human rights complex toadies to drag us into war.

It is clear that the Douma incident has been portrayed as an “official massacre” not because of any aspect of the attack itself. Rather, it has been presented this way in order to justify a pre-conceived war narrative, one that has repeatedly collapsed in the past, but one which the rapacious warmongers and strategic planners refuse to give up on. It’s not about the dead, nor is it even really about Assad. It is about destroying Syria and achieving geopolitical objectives which have been thus far unattainable due to the stubborn resolve of Damascus and its military. Ultimately, this war is about remaking the Middle East, no matter how many bodies it takes. Sadly, the dead of Douma are little more than tinder to those desperate to set Syria and the region ablaze.

August 21, 2015 Posted by | Deception, Mainstream Media, Warmongering | , , , , , | Leave a comment

US Federal Judge Re Clinton: “We wouldn’t be here today if this employee had followed government policy”

Sputnik — 21.08.2015

A US federal judge stated that Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton’s use of a private server for official emails while serving as secretary of state was a violation of government policy, media reports said.

Sullivan was presiding over a hearing on Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) submissions for the release of Department of State records, Politico reported.

“We wouldn’t be here today if this employee had followed government policy,” US District Judge Emmet Sullivan said in an apparent reference to Clinton, according to a report on the Politico web site on Thursday afternoon.

In a further comment from the bench, Sullivan said the case was an unusual one because “there was a violation of government policy,” apparently referring to Clinton’s admitted use of a private email server to conduct official business from her home, the site said.

In the case, Department of Justice lawyer Peter Wechsler argued that the FOIA usually does not permit the search and public release of e-mails from the private accounts and servers of US government officials. However, Wechsler admitted that the circumstances in this case were different, the report said.

Sullivan did not define or further elaborate on how he believed Clinton had violated government policy, according to the Politico account.

The judge repeatedly referred to the State Department’s obligation to preserve its records under the Federal Records Act of 1950, and emphasized that he was determined to investigate the issue thoroughly, the report said.

Politico also reported that Sullivan noted the State Department needed to question Clinton as to whether anyone else might still possess copies of official records from her four years as secretary of state.

Moreover, Sullivan emphasized that the public’s general right to privacy did not apply in this case because of the official position Clinton had held.

“We’re not talking about a search of anyone’s random email,” the newspaper reported Sullivan as saying.

Clinton continues to argue that her use of a private email account while secretary of state was legal and within approved government policy.

She told reporters in Las Vegas on Tuesday that what she did was “legally permitted.”

However, Sullivan’s comments contradict her current argument and position on the issue.

“The Clinton campaign and Clinton attorney David Kendall did not immediately respond to a request for comment on the judge’s remarks,” Politico stated.

In the FOIA case, the conservative group Judicial Watch is trying to get records released about the conditions under which one of Clinton’s closest friends and deputy chief of staff at the State Department, Huma Abedin, was paid and employed while still doing private consulting work.

August 21, 2015 Posted by | Corruption, Deception | , | 1 Comment

South-East Ukraine Is the Real Target of Kiev’s Donbass Blockade

Unable to reconquer Donbass Kiev wants it as an economic basket case to dampen secessionist feeling in the rest of South-East Ukraine

Government army keeps the groceries at bay
By Marko Marjanović | Russia Insider | August 21, 2015

In a process that begun in July 2014 and was completed November later that year the Ukrainian government in Kiev severed all links to rebel-held Donbass in east Ukraine. This meant it stopped making social payments to citizens and de-funded all state institutions: courts, registries, hospitals, banks, post offices and state-owned enterprises.

Strategically this was a mistake.

Nothing would have underscored the legitimacy of Kiev’s rule in east Ukraine more, but for it to continue to perform many of the functions of the state there. Likewise, the people in east Ukraine could not have helped but notice it was Kiev which continued to supply them with services the rebels were incapable, and Russia unwilling, to provide.

As it was the Kiev government became a solely negative factor in their lives – what with its offensive military operations and the arming up of neo-Nazis.

Instead, it was the rebels which were forced to pick up the slack and which now – along with the prestige of being the people who keep the neo-Nazis at bay – enjoy also the legitimacy of being the people who provide the electricity, water, heating, pensions and medical care to Donbass people.

In fact, initially the two rebel statelets – the DPR and LPR – were reluctant and slow to take responsibility for many of these tasks so they should really thank Kiev for forcing them to take their state-building of rival, secessionist republics seriously.

Nonetheless, the argument laid above is a sophisticated one. As such it is understandable that Kiev did not appreciate it, but instead pulled out following the crude logic that dumping social responsibilities in the lap of the rebels would serve to decrease the amount of resources they could dedicate to building up their military capacities.

It is much less understandable why Kiev followed up its pullout from Donbass with a fully-fledged economic blockade.

The two most clear-cut consequences the blockade has had was to enable Poroshenko to act the hardliner, as well as to definitely win the hearts and minds of Donbass residents for the rebels.

Research conducted in March of this year showed the blockade helped an astounding 93% of people in rebel-held east Ukraine to transfer their loyalties away from Kiev.

This is scarcely surprising since Poroshenko very much openly proclaimed the blockade was intended as continuation of war by means of collective reprisals against the civilians of Donbass:

“We will have our jobs – they will not. We will have our pensions – they will not. We will have care for children, for people and retirees – they will not.

Our children will go to schools and kindergartens… theirs will hole up in the basements. Because they are not able to do a thing.

This is exactly how we will win this war!”

Exactly how Poroshenko thought this would win the war for Kiev is a mystery. The idea unarmed civilians would rise against armed rebels originating from their midst – and then for the benefit of their Maidan-affiliated tormentors was always bizarre.

Likewise the idea that Donbass – which controlled a stretch of border with Russia – could actually be brought to its knees and forced to beg for mercy.

Dreadfully enough, during the winter of 2014-15 the blockade indeed contributed to a major humanitarian crisis. There was little food to buy and severe shortages of many types of medicine. There were even reports of individual deaths – usually of socially isolated pensioners, now without pensions. No doubt things would have been even worse without humanitarian assistance from Russia.

This situation, however, has now been long superseded. Between commerce with Russiasmuggling across front lines, and transit from government-held Ukraine via Russia conditions in Donbass, as regards supplies, are now livable enough. – And there are no signs that Donbass is ready to fall on its knees before the government in Kiev as Poroshenko predicted in November.

If anything we must assume that many eastern Ukrainians in rebel-held territories feel a measure of pride at having withstood Kiev’s attempted strangulation of their region.

In other words, aside from being morally repugnant the blockade has proven an utter failure in its stated goal of bringing Donbass back under central control – but has instead made this goal more distant than ever.

Familiar lines (in this case from the 2004 election)

It is more likely that the politicians in Kiev regarded Donbass lost from the onset and the blockade was instead enacted for their own political purposes. – That is merely to show they were still “doing something” to bring it back even after they called off large-scale military operations in face of losses and defeats. (And even as the blockade was having the exact opposite effect.)

It is true, however, that the war and the blockade has meant that material quality of life in rebel-held territories is even worse than in areas under government control.

This must come as a disappointment to many since we can recall that hope for a better economic situation was perhaps the main mobilizing force behind the pro-Russian rallies in eastern Ukraine in the wake of Maidan.

By and large the masses of people who came out for counter-Maidan rallies in February, March and April 2014 across eastern Ukraine were not signing up for adventure and armed uprising (that came much later as reaction to heavy-handedness and intransigence of Maidan-controlled Kiev).

What they were calling for instead was for the relatively more orderly and economically prosperous Russia to swiftly take them under their wing – as it had just done with Crimea (thrilling its inhabitants).

Of course, the disappointment that Russia did not take over responsibility for Donbass is unlikely to translate into desire by its inhabitants to be taken over by the Maidan-affiliated forces that are shelling, blockading and demonizing them daily.

What the blockade may do, however, is demonstrate to other anti-Maidan Ukrainians that no matter the debt of economic abyss that Ukraine is facing an eventual separation from Maidan-controlled Kiev would not bring material relief.

Educated by the example of blockaded Donbass (and the likewise blockaded Transnistria) South-East Ukrainians now can have no doubt that no matter how dreadful the material situation in Ukraine – an attempted secession can only result in things getting worse yet.

Nikolai Holmov (‘OdessaBlogger’), a pro-Maidan commentator from Ukraine, explains the calculation leaders and people from heavily anti-Maidan areas like Kharkov, Mariupol and southern Odessa region must consider:

Anton Cisse [leader of ethnic Bulgarians in southern Odessa region] is no political ally of President Poroshenko, and therefore by extension is no political ally of Governor Saakashvili – however he is not stupid either. Indeed he is nobody’s fool.

Mr Cisse is quite capable of looking across the border to Transnistria and seeing what a basket case it is, particularly economically.

As a businessman first and foremost (and a politician secondly) there is simply no gain for him in any form of separatist movement within his stronghold that would move his patch toward an economic disaster area whilst also eschewing it from Odessa, its infrastructure, and its wealth.

Neither would he take kindly to his small fiefdom becoming a second devastated Donbas for the sake of an illusionary Bessarabia.

Thus, no matter what sympathies Mr Cisse may have (or not) for the Kremlin inspired “Bessarabia project” Mr Cisse, and his very loyal ethic Bulgarian constituents, are not about to sanction, encourage, give any meaningful support to, or lead the charge for, an independent/autonomous Bessarabia any time soon.

This, along with heavy policing – formal and informal – has to be a reason why we’ve seen very little evidence of secessionist feeling even in parts of South-East Ukraine where this sentiment was very visible last year before the war begun.

In other words, even if Maidan regime is not be able to inspire real enthusiasm and loyalty in the South-East it has conclusively demonstrated the ability to make lives fairly miserable in the material sense for those who try to break free – even in the event that they succeed.

It’s classic terrorist logic: Donbass is subject to collective reprisals, not in the hope it will surrender or be re-educated, but to be made into a lesson for those who might be tempted to follow in its footsteps.

August 21, 2015 Posted by | Aletho News | , , , | Leave a comment

Minsk -2: A Rotting Corpse

By Christopher Black – New Eastern Outlook – 21.08.2015

The Minsk-2 ceasefire agreement is dead but no one wants to bury the rotting corpse. Since it was signed in February of this year the Donbas governments and Russia have bent over backward to comply with the terms of that agreement hoping against hope that the Kiev junta would do the same. They hoped in vain.

Poroshenko and his fascist allies instead have refused to change the constitution to accommodate the concerns of the Donbas republics, have tried to suppress the Communist Party and other parties in opposition, have refused to withdraw heavy weaponry from the line of contact, have maintained increasingly heavy artillery attacks on the civilian populations and areas and cut off routes for essential foodstuffs, medical aid and technical equipment. Rather than enjoying a ceasefire, the peoples of the Donbas are under a state of siege.

Poroshenko openly calls for a military solution to the crisis and has increased the draft in the west. The NATO alliance continues to pour in its forces disguised as “advisers” and “mercenaries” and puts additional pressure on Russia with multiple military exercises from the Baltic to Bulgaria, where more tanks have been recently dispatched to “send Russia a message.”

The reality of the situation was stated on the 18th of August when President Putin stated, “It was the Donbas militias that suggested withdrawing all military equipment with calibre under 100mm. Unfortunately, the opposite side didn’t do that. On the contrary, according to the available data, it is concentrating its units there, including those reinforced with military hardware.” He continued to pay lip service to the Minsk-2 agreement, stating, “As for the Minsk-2 agreement, I believe there is no alternative for resolving the situation and that peace will prevail in the long run… “ and continued with “Our task is to minimize the losses with which we will come to this peace.”

There can be no doubt that the Minsk-2 agreements do provide the framework for a peaceful settlement of the impasse but there is also no doubt that the Kiev and NATO forces have no intention of abiding by its terms and are preparing for another offensive. Putin also stated, “I hope that it will not come to direct large scale clashes.” Yet, the people of the Donbas would be surprised to be told that the thousands of shells raining down on them from the Kiev junta’s artillery in order to provoke those clashes do not count.

But what is the purpose of this state of siege? Since the Donbas forces have proved their strength and resilience the Kiev regime has little hope of achieving the total destruction of those forces and imposing its will on the Donbas. Kiev and NATO also know that Russia does not want to be drawn into a direct clash with NATO that could lead to a general war. In consequence the Kiev-NATO axis have decided to engage in operations that have direct political repercussions designed to disrupt the Russian-Donbas alliance or to paralyze it and try to enlist new allies. At the same time they have decided to make the war more costly for the Donbas and Russia both in military and economic terms, and to try to bring about a gradual exhaustion of their physical and moral resistance.

We see this strategy being played out with the constant increase of economic warfare against Russia, which is clearly the ultimate target, the increasing use of propaganda including the planting in the media of the most absurd stories about Russia and its government, the use, once again of the OSCE observes as intelligence agents for NATO as happened in the Yugoslav war, and, in the political sphere, attempts by the United States and Britain to humiliate Russia with the politically motivated attempt to set up a tribunal regarding the downing of flight MH17.

Clausewitz said that “war is a pulsation of violence, variable in strength and therefore, variable in the speed with which it explodes and discharges it energy’ and that “If we keep in mind that war springs from some political purpose, it is natural that the prime cause of its existence will remain the supreme consideration in conducting it.”

Indeed, we see in Ukraine the expression of the Anglo-American-German political purpose: the desire to force Russia to submit to their will. They failed in World War I. The attempt failed again in World War II. The so–called Cold War succeeded in bankrupting the socialist state but the capitalist state that rose from that sad decline is gathering its strength once again and refuses to submit to anyone’s diktats. And so the NATO coup in Kiev, in order to take Ukraine away from Russian influence as the Nazis tried to do in World War II.

But the Kiev-NATO cabal cannot break the will of the peoples of the Donbas nor of Russia and so the constant attacks, the constant propaganda, the constant turning of the economic screws.

These actions are all illegal under international law and the laws of war. They are violations of the principles and articles of the UN Charter. They are violations of several Geneva Conventions and other international treaties. The attacks on civilians are war crimes. The use of prohibited weaponry, in these attacks, is a war crime. The collective punishment of entire populations is a war crime. The use of economic warfare is a war crime. Yet nothing is done by any western government to stop it nor does the International Criminal Court lay any charges where it can. Instead it stands by and condones these crimes by its inaction.

Article 7 of the Rome Statue that created the ICC states, “that crimes against humanity includes persecution of an identifiable group or collectivity on political, racial, national, ethnic…grounds.”

Article 7-2(b) states that the crime of extermination includes the intentional infliction of conditions of life, inter alia, the deprivation of access to food and medicine, calculated to bring about the destruction of part of a population.

Article 8 defining war crimes, states that it includes wilful killing, wilfully causing great suffering, extensive destruction of property not justified by military necessity, and carried out unlawfully and wantonly, intentionally directing attacks against the civilian population not taking part in hostilities, intentionally directing attacks against civilian objects, attacking or bombarding by whatever means towns, villages, dwellings or buildings which are undefended and which are not military objectives, declaring that no quarter will be given, using weapons designed to inflict unnecessary suffering or are indiscriminate, and intentionally using starvation as a method of warfare. The list goes on and is a compendium of the crimes being committed by the Kiev-NATO axis powers in Ukraine.

On April 17, 2014 the Kiev regime sent a declaration under Article 12(3) of the Rome Statute accepting jurisdiction of the ICC over alleged crimes committed on its territory from November 21 2013 to 22 February 2014. This was clearly a propaganda gesture at the time to justify the coup that overthrew the legitimate government. The Prosecutor has not reacted publicly to this declaration nor to its meaning but the argument can be made that if the Kiev regime speaking for Ukraine has accepted the ICCs jurisdiction for crimes in one time frame it should also accept it for the crimes committed since then. One could argue that the situation is so grave that the ICC must take action against any persons committing crimes in a territory over which it has jurisdiction that being Ukraine. Even if that argument were rejected on technical grounds, one would think that the Prosecutor would at least make a statement that the operations of the Kiev-NATO axis constitute war crimes under the Rome Statue and that they should stop those operations at once. But the Prosecutor stays silent, as silent as she was when she served US interests at the Rwanda War Crimes Tribunal and did not protest the on -sided indictments handed out there. As the saying goes, “Once in the American pocket, always in their pocket.”

On August 18th the Russian Foreign Ministry called for all sides to adhere to the Minsk agreements and expressed concern that the “bellicose rhetoric coming from Ukraine which is encouraged by a number of its foreign patrons, causes major concern and clearly attests to the intention to prepare the public opinion for another attempt to resolve the Ukrainian crisis by force. Under the circumstances, all responsibility for the negative consequences of such provocative actions will be borne by the current Ukrainian authorities.” Ominous words.

When the Minsk Agreements were signed in February I wrote an article doubting that the Kiev-NATO side had any intention of using it except as a means of pausing their operations in order to reorganise and prepare for the next offensive. My doubts proved justified.

The only way forward is to resolve the conflict at the political level on the basis of the recognition of the right to self-rule and autonomy for the Donbas republics, the creation of a federal state to assure ethnic stability, and the commitment by Ukraine that it will be a neutral state and not part of any plan to “contain” Russia, a plan that can only lead to world war.

But the NATO puppets in charge of Ukraine do not act in the interests of Ukraine. They act in the interests of the masters of war who have no concern for humanity in general or Ukrainians in particular and if they continue their operations they will not succeed in uniting Ukraine but only in laying it waste.

Christopher Black is an international criminal lawyer based in Toronto, he is a member of the Law Society of Upper Canada and he is known for a number of high-profile cases involving human rights and war crimes.

August 21, 2015 Posted by | Deception, Militarism | , , , | Leave a comment

Deadly Cheering for War in Ukraine by Western Press

By Roger Annis | CounterPunch | August 21, 2015

Two weeks ago, the Washington Post published an editorial saying that the governments of the NATO military alliance are being too soft on Russia over the crisis in Ukraine. The editors want even more aggressive support to the governing regime in Kyiv than what is already being given.

In particular, the newspaper objects to the ceasefire agreement that it says beleaguered Kyiv was pressured to sign in Minsk, Belarus on February 15, 2015. The editorial was headlined, ‘Putting Ukraine in an untenable position’ and its reads, “Yet now the German and French governments have enlisted the help of the Obama administration in seeking unilateral Ukrainian compliance with Minsk 2’s onerous political terms, which if fully implemented would implant a Russian-controlled entity inside Ukraine’s political system.”

The editors of the Post are pulling off a ruse. Kyiv has not abided by a single clause of Minsk-2, and the regime’s foreign backers, including in the editorial offices of the nearly all of Western media, keep a careful silence on the subject.

Points ten, eleven and twelve of the Minsk-2 agreement read as follows:

10. Pullout of all foreign armed formations, military equipment, and also mercenaries from the territory of Ukraine under OSCE supervision. Disarmament of all illegal groups.

11. Constitutional reform in Ukraine, with a new constitution to come into effect by the end of 2015, the key element of which is decentralisation (taking into account peculiarities of particular districts of Donetsk and Luhansk oblasts, agreed with representatives of these districts), and also approval of permanent legislation on the special status of particular districts of Donetsk and Luhansk oblasts in accordance with the measures spelt out in the attached footnote, by the end of 2015.

12. Based on the Law of Ukraine “On temporary Order of Local Self-Governance in Particular Districts of Donetsk and Luhansk Oblasts”, questions related to local elections will be discussed and agreed upon with representatives of particular districts of Donetsk and Luhansk oblasts in the framework of the Trilateral Contact Group. Elections will be held in accordance with relevant OSCE standards and monitored by OSCE/ODIHR.

So the obligations are clear, but they are being utterly disregarded by Kyiv and, as we see, by its foreign backers.

The Post‘s editorial is also a clear example of the ‘two worlds, two realities’ which prevail in the world today over the Ukraine crisis. One view sees an extreme, right-wing government in Kyiv waging a civil war against a population in the east of Ukraine which rejects Kyiv’s anti-Russia, intolerant nationalism and Kyiv’s pro-austerity embrace of the European Union. The opposite view sees ongoing Russian “invasions”, “occupations” and intervention in Ukraine. Most regretfully, the latter view is shared by a sizable body of liberal, social democratic and even pseudo-Marxist opinion in the West.

The Post editorial describes the present situation in eastern Ukraine as follows: “[Russia’s] forces continue to shell and rocket Ukrainian positions on a daily basis. Far from pulling back heavy weapons or withdrawing its troops as required by the agreement, it has built military bases and deployed 9,000 troops inside Ukraine and stationed another 50,000 just outside the border, according to Ukrainian and NATO officials.”

Funny, on the Post‘s extensive ‘Ukraine crisis‘ compilation of articles, one searches in vain for a single news report confirming the editors’ claims of Russian military intervention in eastern Ukraine and ongoing shelling and bombardment. The closest we get to that are reports by Post journalists embedded with the Ukrainian army. But their reports do not come close to verifying the editors’ claims; they consist merely of war-tourism style observations and photos.

So let’s pause for a moment to reflect. The Washington Post (and some other mainstream media) publishes articles and photo stories by journalists in and around Kyiv-controlled eastern Ukraine. But the Post‘s journalists can’t seem to provide examples of how “Russia’s forces continue to shell and rocket Ukrainian positions on a daily basis”. Surely, if the situation is that severe, there must be no shortage of visual examples to provide to readers? And surely the U.S. government can provide satellite images to mainstream media of the “9,000 Russian soldiers” in eastern Ukraine as well as other examples of Russian intervention?

Unless… it’s all, or mostly, make believe.

On the rebel side of eastern Ukraine, there is no shortage of examples of grim, daily shelling by Ukrainian armed forces, which are backed by NATO. Alas, and not by accident, such reports never, ever grace the pages of the Western media.

Canadian opposition parties cheer for more war

The blind, anti-Russia stand of the Washington Post is shared by the parties of the political mainstreams in the United States and Canada.

In Canada, the two main opposition parties are not only aligned with the pro-Kyiv, Conservative Party government in Ottawa. Similar to the Post editors in the U.S., they criticize the federal government in Ottawa for being too soft on Russia.

The New Cold War.org website has recently reported the pro-war views of the leader of the social-democratic New Democratic Party. Tom Mulcair presented his views to the first televised debate of the federal election in Canada on August 6. “We are proud members of NATO,” he declared. Mulcair criticized Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper for not adding even more Russian government and business leaders on the government’s war-threatening sanctions list. (The Canadian election will take place on October 19.)

Concerning the Liberal Party in Canada, it appreciates and backs the Harper government’s support of Kyiv, but it also criticizes both the government and the NDP for being too soft on Russia and the “pro-Russian separatists” in eastern Ukraine.

Key ideologues of Liberal Party foreign policy spoke to a public forum on Ukraine in Toronto on August 11. You can view excerpts of the forum here on YouTube, and you can read a favourable print report of the event here. A key demand on the Liberal Party wish-list for Ukraine is that the Canadian government begin to provide heavy weaponry to the Ukrainian army.

One of Canada’s better-known journalists, Dianne Francis, provides a particularly zany version of the “soft on Russia” argument in an article published by the neo-conservative Atlantic Council on August 17. She writes: “World attention focuses on ISIS and Iran, with its half an atomic weapon. But the biggest geopolitical issue is Vladimir Putin, backed by thousands of nuclear weapons, who is gradually conquering Ukraine, a democracy with 45 million people the size of Germany and Poland combined.

“In just over a year, Russia has seized nine per cent of Ukraine, killed 6,200, wounded 30,000, displaced 1.38 million people and shot down a commercial airliner with 298 people aboard.

“Even so, European and American retaliation has been soft, and ineffective…”

Only last month, Francis published several articles praising as heroes Ukraine’s extreme-right and neo-Nazi paramilitary battalions. She is Distinguished Professor at the Ted Rogers School of Management at Ryerson University in Toronto and a former editor of the National Post.

Canada is already providing military training to Ukraine’s army, along with non-lethal (sic) military equipment and spying and communication equipment and data. The government and the media support or turn a blind eye to the fundraising going on in Canada by Ukrainian ultranationalists to purchase military equipment for the war. Some of the purchased or supplied equipment serves the ongoing shelling of civilian areas of eastern Ukraine.

The Minsk-2 ceasefire provides a roadmap to end the hostilities in eastern Ukraine. A real ceasefire could open the road to resolution of the large social, economic and political issues that have split Ukraine politically and driven a sizable portion of the its population into revolt. But for now, the cheering for war taking place in Western capitals and editorial offices is a major obstacle for achieving all this.

Roger Annis is an editor of the website The New Cold War: Ukraine and beyond. On June 12, he gave a talk in Vancouver, Canada reporting on his visit to Donetsk, eastern Ukraine in April 2015 as part of a media tour group. A video broadcast of that talk is here: The NATO offensive in eastern Europe and the class and the national dynamics of the war in eastern Ukraine.

August 21, 2015 Posted by | Mainstream Media, Warmongering, Militarism | , , , , | 2 Comments

Unspoken Death Toll of Fukushima: Nuclear Disaster Killing Japanese Slowly

Sputnik – 20.08.2015

According to London-based independent consultant on radioactivity in the environment Dr. Ian Fairlie, the health toll from the Fukushima nuclear catastrophe is horrific: about 12,000 workers have been exposed to high levels of radiation (some up to 250 mSv); between 2011 and 2015, about 2,000 died from the effects of evacuations, ill-health and suicide related to the disaster; furthermore, an estimated 5,000 will most likely face lethal cancer in the future, and that is just the tip of the iceberg.

What makes matters even worse, the nuclear disaster and subsequent radiation exposure lies at the root of the longer term health effects, such as cancers, strokes, CVS (cyclic vomiting syndrome) diseases, hereditary effects and many more.

Embarrassingly, “[t]he Japanese Government, its advisors, and most radiation scientists in Japan (with some honorable exceptions) minimize the risks of radiation. The official widely-observed policy is that small amounts of radiation are harmless: scientifically speaking this is untenable,” Dr. Fairlie pointed out.

The Japanese government even goes so far as to increase the public limit for radiation in Japan from 1 mSv to 20 mSv per year, while its scientists are making efforts to convince the International Commission on Radiological Protection (ICRP) to accept this enormous increase.

“This is not only unscientific, it is also unconscionable,” Dr. Fairlie stressed, adding that “there is never a safe dose, except zero dose.”

However, while the Japanese government is turning a blind eye to radiogenic late effects, the evidence “is solid”: the RERF Foundation which is based in Hiroshima and Nagasaki is observing the Japanese atomic bomb survivors and still registering nuclear radiation’s long-term effects.

“From the UNSCEAR estimate of 48,000 person Sv [the collective dose to the Japanese population from Fukushima], it can be reliably estimated (using a fatal cancer risk factor of 10% per Sv) that about 5,000 fatal cancers will occur in Japan in the future from Fukushima’s fallout,” he noted.

Dr. Fairlie added that in addition to radiation-related problems, former inhabitants of Fukushima Prefecture suffer Post-Trauma Stress Disorder (PTSD), depression, anxiety disorders that apparently cause increased suicide.

The expert also pointed to the 15 percent drop in the number of live births in the prefecture in 2011, as well as higher rates of early spontaneous abortions and a 20 percent rise in the infant mortality rate in 2012.

“It is impossible not to be moved by the scale of Fukushima’s toll in terms of deaths, suicides, mental ill-health and human suffering,” the expert said.

August 21, 2015 Posted by | Deception, Nuclear Power, Science and Pseudo-Science | | 2 Comments