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After Decades of Russian Goodwill, Norway Builds Up Military Against Moscow


Norwegian Prime Minister Stoltenberg and Russian President Medvedev at the 2010 meeting cementing the new delimitation of the Barents Sea maritime border in Norway’s favor.
Sputnik – June 26, 2016

Earlier this month, Norway’s government announced a new defense plan, amounting to the largest military modernization since the Cold War, directed against Russia. Commenting on the initiative, journalist Sviatoslav Knyazev suggested that the country’s government has chosen to forget decades of good-neighborly relations between Oslo and Moscow.

Last weekend, Norwegian media reported on the country’s most ambitious plans to modernize the country’s armed forces since the end of the Cold War.

The government plans include the purchase of at least 52 Lockheed Martin F-35 fifth-generation multirole fighter jets, four submarines (presumably Swedish-built diesel subs), and six coastal patrol aircraft. Plans also include the construction of five new frigates and six corvettes.Overall, the defense budget of the country of five million is expected to increase by 165 billion kroner (about $19.4 billion US) over the next 20 years.

Norwegian Prime Minister Erna Solberg did not mince words as to who exactly the buildup is directed against, stating that “we have an increasingly unpredictable neighbor to the east which is strengthening its military capacity, and showing willingness to use military force as a political tool.”

Solberg’s comments followed on promises by Defense Minister Ine Eriksen Soreide in February 2015 that her country would be reorganizing its armed forces to counter the so-called ‘Russian threat’. At that time, the official candidly admitted that Russian forces had “not breached our territory,” but added that Oslo was worried over the increase in the range and number of Russian military aircrafts’ flights near the country.

On the border between Norway and Russia, Oslo is deploying a new army unit, consisting of 200 rangers, to be deployed in the Sor-Varanger municipality in Finnmark county, strengthening a several-hundred strong contingent of border guards. These units, equipped with anti-tank and anti-aircraft weapons, will be based in the direct vicinity of the Russian town of Pechenga.Commenting on the buildup in a piece for the online news and analysis portal PolitRussia, independent journalist Sviatoslav Knyazev recalled that “even before the modernization, the Norwegian Armed Forces were relatively powerful.”

“The per capita defense costs of the Kingdom are the highest in Europe. The armed forces are small enough (about 30,000 on active duty and some 45,000 in the reserve) but well prepared and equipped. Taking account of mandatory military service and its high prestige, a large portion of the population has military training. In the event of a hypothetical conflict, Norway can put several hundred thousand people under arms.”

Listing off the inventory of the country’s armed forces, Knyazev recalled that its ground forces have 52 Leopard 2A4 tanks, along with 20 older Leopard 1A5s, along with 315 M113 armored personnel carriers, 104 Swedish-made CV90 infantry fighting vehicles, and 80 SISU XA-185 and XA-203 armored personnel carriers. The army also has about 200 multi-purpose armored vehicles, and a number of self-propelled guns and multiple launch rocket systems.

The Air Force, for its part, has 57 F-16 multirole fighters, while the Navy has five frigates, six corvettes and six submarines.With these figures and the government’s latest plans in mind, the journalist pointed out that Norway is “effectively planning to double the strength of its Navy and Air Force (or completely modernize it). We are talking about billions of dollars of spending, a lot even for a wealthy country like Norway.”

Unfortunately, Knyazev emphasized, “all of this is directed solely against us [Russia].” At the same time, “Norway’s desire to ‘play with toy soldiers’ and to create conditions which could destabilize our northern border seems doubly strange in the context of Moscow’s long record of friendly relations toward Oslo.”

For a start, the journalist pointed out, the Russian Empire was one of the first to recognize Norway’s independence, soon after the country broke off from Sweden in 1905. Later, after the collapse of the Russian Empire and the emergence of the Soviet Union, diplomatic relations were established in short order, with relations established in 1924.

“In 1944,” Knyazev recalled, “its was the Red Army which fought to liberate [northern] Norway from the Nazi invaders. Thousands of Soviet soldiers and officers paid with their lives for the country’s freedom. After that, the Soviet Union, itself ravaged by war, helped to restore its northern neighbor. The USSR provided food rations, and Red Army engineering units helped rebuild ruined buildings. Moreover, the Soviet Union did not even try to create a zone of influence in Norway or to reshape its borders. In September 1945, having assisted its neighbors with aid, Soviet troops voluntarily left the country.”

Later, in the 1970s, a territorial dispute broke out between Moscow and Oslo over the maritime border in the Barents Sea, rich in offshore hydrocarbon reserves and fishing resources. “However, in 2010, Russia voluntarily ceded half of the disputed territory and signed a treaty ‘On Maritime Delimitation and Cooperation in the Barents Sea and the Arctic Ocean.'”

In 1949, the journalist bitterly recalled, the Norwegian government “thanked” the USSR for its contribution to the country’s liberation by joining the NATO alliance. “Now, it seems, we are being ‘thanked’ for the [2010] territorial gift, the shelf and the hydrocarbons worth tens of billions of dollars…”

“First, Norway introduced sanctions against us over a war unleashed by Washington in Ukraine [in 2014], then caused a scandal because of our Deputy Prime Minister’s visit to Svalbard [in 2015], and now they are up in arms and creating new military units directed against us.”Meanwhile, Knyazev lamented, “Jens Stoltenberg, the same former Norwegian Prime Minister who earned political capital through the 2010 demarcation agreement, is now directing the NATO bloc’s aggressive anti-Russian activities. Today, he is calling for strengthening NATO’s presence in the Baltic and Black seas, suggesting that the anti-Russian missile defense system in Eastern Europe is nothing out of the ordinary, and calling for ‘deterrence’ against Russia, which in actuality is not planning to attack anyone.”

Ultimately, the journalist suggested, “Norway, unfortunately, is a new example of the fact that befriending Western countries and doing them good is quite a thankless occupation…”

See also:

Norway Follows in US Footsteps, Ready to Deploy Aid to Syrian Rebels

June 26, 2016 Posted by | Militarism, Timeless or most popular | , , | 1 Comment

It’s Still the Iraq War, Stupid.

By Craig Murray | June 26, 2016

No rational person could blame Jeremy Corbyn for Brexit. So why are the Blairites moving against Corbyn now, with such precipitate haste?

The answer is the Chilcot Report. It is only a fortnight away, and though its form will be concealed by thick layers of establishment whitewash, the basic contours of Blair’s lies will still be visible beneath. Corbyn had deferred to Blairite pressure not to apologise on behalf of the Labour Party for the Iraq War until Chilcot is published.

For the Labour Right, the moment when Corbyn as Labour leader stands up in parliament and condemns Blair over Iraq, is going to be as traumatic as it was for the hardliners of the Soviet Communist Party when Khruschev denounced the crimes of Stalin. It would also destroy Blair’s carefully planned post-Chilcot PR strategy. It is essential to the Blairites that when Chilcot is debated in parliament in two weeks time, Jeremy Corbyn is not in place as Labour leader to speak in the debate. The Blairite plan is therefore for the parliamentary party to depose him as parliamentary leader and get speaker John Bercow to acknowledge someone else in that fictional position in time for the Chilcot debate, with Corbyn remaining leader in the country but with no parliamentary status.

Yes, they are that nuts.

If the fault line for the Tories is Europe, for Labour it is the Middle East. Those opposing Corbyn are defined by their enthusiasm for bombing campaigns that kill Muslim children. And not only by the UK. Both of the first two to go, Hilary Benn and Heidi Alexander, are hardline supporters of Israel.

This was Benn the week before his celebrated advocacy of bombing Syria:

Shadow Foreign Secretary Hilary Benn told a Labour Friends of Israel (LFI) lunch yesterday that relations with Israel must be based on cooperation and rejected attempts to isolate the country.

Addressing senior party figures in Westminster, Benn praised Israel for its “progressive spirit, vibrant democracy, strong welfare state, thriving free press and independent judiciary.” He also called Israel “an economic giant, a high-tech centre, second only to the United States. A land of innovation and entrepreneurship, venture capital and graduates, private and public enterprise.”

Consequently, said Benn, “Our future relations must be built on cooperation and engagement, not isolation of Israel. We must take on those who seek to delegitimise the state of Israel or question its right to exist.”

Heidi Alexander actually signed, as a 2015 parliamentary candidate, the “We Believe in Israel” charter, the provisions of which state there must be no boycotts of Israel, and Israel must not be described as an apartheid state.

This fault line is very well defined. The manufactured row about “anti-Semitism” in the Labour Party shows exactly the same split. In my researches, 100% of those who have promoted accusations of anti-Semitism were supporters of the Iraq War and/or had demonstrable links to professional pro-Israel lobby groups. 100% of those accused of anti-Semitism were active opponents of the Iraq War. Never underestimate the Blairite fury at being shown not just to be liars but to be wrong. Iraq is their Achilles heel and they are extremely touchy about it.

No rational person would believe Brexit was Jeremy Corbyn’s fault. No rational person would believe that now is a good moment for the Labour Party to tear itself apart. Extraordinarily, the timing is determined by Chilcot.

June 26, 2016 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Timeless or most popular, War Crimes, Wars for Israel | , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

How the News Agenda is Set

By Craig Murray | June 26, 2016

David Cameron gets heckled every day of his life. The media never bother to report the names of the hecklers or the gist of what they say.

Yet a single heckler shouts at Jeremy Corbyn at Gay Pride, and not only is that front page news in the Guardian, it is on BBC, ITN and Sky News.

What makes a single individual heckling a politician newsworthy? There are dozens such examples every single day that are not newsworthy.

The answer is simple. Normally the hecklers are promoting an anti-establishment view, so it does not get reported. Whereas this heckler was promoting the number one priority of the establishment and mainstream media, to get rid of Jeremy Corbyn. So this heckler, uniquely, is front page news and his words are repeated at great length in the Guardian and throughout the broadcast media.

Screenshot (51)

The impression is deliberately given that he reflects general disgust from young people, and particularly gay young people, at Corbyn over the EU referendum. The very enthusiastic reception for Corbyn at Gay Pride is not reported.

Nor is the fact that the incident was not a chance one. The “heckler” is Tom Mauchline, a PR professional for PR firm Portland Communications, a dedicated Blairite (he describes himself as Gouldian) formerly working on the Liz Kendall leadership campaign. Portland Communications’ “strategic counsel” is Alastair Campbell.

So far from representing a popular mood, Mauchlyne was this morning on twitter urging people to sign a 38 Degrees petition supporting the no confidence motion against Corbyn. Ten hours later that petition has gained 65 signatures, compared to 120,000 for a petition supporting Corbyn. Mauchline formerly worked for 38 Degrees, unsurprising given their disgraceful behaviour over the Kuenssberg petition. I am waiting for the circle to be squared and Kuenssberg to report on the significance of Mauchline’s lone heckle.

I find it incredible that the mainstream media are all carrying this faked incident while not one single mainstream journalist has reported who Mauchline really is.

June 26, 2016 Posted by | Deception, Mainstream Media, Warmongering | , , | 2 Comments

Brexit and the Diseased Liberal Mind

By Jonathan Cook | June 26, 2016

The enraged liberal reaction to the Brexit vote is in full flood. The anger is pathological – and helps to shed light on why a majority of Britons voted for leaving the European Union, just as earlier a majority of Labour party members voted for Jeremy Corbyn as leader.

A few years ago the American writer Chris Hedges wrote a book he titled the Death of the Liberal Class. His argument was not so much that liberals had disappeared, but that they had become so co-opted by the right wing and its goals – from the subversion of progressive economic and social ideals by neoliberalism, to the enthusiastic embrace of neonservative doctrine in prosecuting aggressive and expansionist wars overseas in the guise of “humanitarian intervention” – that liberalism had been hollowed out of all substance.

Liberal pundits sensitively agonise over, but invariably end up backing, policies designed to benefit the bankers and arms manufacturers, and ones that wreak havoc domestically and abroad. They are the “useful idiots” of modern western societies.

Reading this piece on the fallout from Brexit by Zoe Williams, a columnist who ranks as left wing by the current standards of the deeply diminished Guardian, one can isolate this liberal pathology in all its sordid glory.

Here is a revealing section, written by a mind so befuddled by decades of neoliberal orthodoxy that it has lost all sense of the values it claims to espouse:

There is a reason why, when Marine le Pen and Donald Trump congratulated us on our decision, it was like being punched in the face – because they are racists, authoritarian, small-minded and backward-looking. They embody the energy of hatred. The principles that underpin internationalism – cooperation, solidarity, unity, empathy, openness – these are all just elements of love.

One wonders where in the corridors of the EU bureaucracy Williams identifies that “love” she so admires. Did she see it when the Greeks were being crushed into submission after they rebelled against austerity policies that were themselves a legacy of European economic policies that had required Greece to sell off the last of its family silver?

Is she enamoured of this internationalism when the World Bank and IMF go into Africa and force developing nations into debt-slavery, typically after a dictator has trashed the country decades after being installed and propped up with arms and military advisers from the US and European nations?

What about the love-filled internationalism of NATO, which has relied on the EU to help spread its military tentacles across Europe close to the throat of the Russian bear? Is that the kind of cooperation, solidarity and unity she was thinking of?

Williams then does what a lot of liberals are doing at the moment. She calls for subversion of the democratic will:

The anger of the progressive remain side, however, has somewhere to go: always suckers for optimism, we now have the impetus to put aside ambiguity in the service of clarity, put aside differences in the service of creativity. Out of embarrassment or ironic detachment, we’ve backed away from this fight for too long.

That includes seeking the ousting of Jeremy Corbyn, of course. “Progressive” Remainers, it seems, have had enough of him. His crime is that he hails from “leftwing aristocracy” – his parents were lefties too, apparently, and even had such strong internationalist principles that they first met at a committee on the Spanish civil war.

But Corbyn’s greater crime, according to Williams, is that “he is not in favour of the EU”. It would be too much trouble for her to try and untangle the knotty problem of how a supreme internationalist like Corbyn, or Tony Benn before him, could be so against the love-filled EU. So she doesn’t bother.

We will never know from Williams how a leader who supports oppressed and under-privileged people around the world is cut from the same cloth as racists like Le Pen and Trump. That would require the kind of “agile thinking” she accuses Corbyn of being incapable of. It might hint that there is a left wing case quite separate from the racist one – even if Corbyn was not allowed by his party to advocate it – for abandoning the EU.

But no, Williams assures us, Labour needs someone with much more recent left wing heritage, someone who can tailor his or her sails to the prevailing winds of orthodoxy. And what’s even better, there is a Labour party stuffed full of Blairities to chose from. After all, their international credentials have been proven repeatedly, including in the killing fields of Iraq and Libya.

And here, wrapped into a single paragraph, is a golden nugget of liberal pathology from Williams. Her furious liberal plea is to rip up the foundations of democracy: get rid of the democratically elected Corbyn and find a way, any way, to block the wrong referendum outcome. No love, solidarity, unity or empathy for those who betrayed her and her class.

There hasn’t been a more fertile time for a Labour leader since the 1990s. The case for a snap general election, already strong, will only intensify over the coming weeks. As the sheer mendacity of the leave argument becomes clear – it never intended to curb immigration, there will be no extra money for the NHS, there was no plan for making up EU spending in deprived areas – there will be a powerful argument for framing the general election as a rematch. Not another referendum, but a brake on article 50 and the next move determined by the new government. If you still want to leave the EU, vote Conservative. If you’ve realised or knew already what an act of vandalism that was, vote Labour.

Jonathan Cook, based in Nazareth, Israel is a winner of the Martha Gellhorn Special Prize for Journalism. His latest books are Israel and the Clash of Civilisations: Iraq, Iran and the Plan to Remake the Middle East (Pluto Press) and Disappearing Palestine: Israel’s Experiments in Human Despair (Zed Books).

June 26, 2016 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Mainstream Media, Warmongering | , , , , | 1 Comment

Israel, Turkey reach agreement to normalize ties – Israeli official

RT | June 26, 2016

Israel and Turkey have reached an agreement to normalize ties, a senior Israeli official told reporters, according to Reuters. This will end the bitter rift over the Israeli Navy’s killing of nine Turkish citizens during a Gaza flotilla raid in 2010.

The agreement, which took three years to reach, is expected to be officially announced on Monday, said the official traveling with Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who is currently in Rome.

The restoration of full diplomatic relations that deteriorated after the Israeli navy killed nine Turkish and one Turkish-American pro-Palestinian activists in 2010 has been brokered with the help of Washington.

Israel conducted an operation against six civilian ships that belonged to the Gaza Freedom Flotilla in international waters of the Mediterranean Sea. The ships fit by the Free Gaza Movement and the Turkish Foundation for Human Rights and Freedoms and Humanitarian Relief (IHH) were carrying humanitarian and construction supplies to the blockaded Gaza Strip.

The deal is likely to involve compensation (of around $20 million) to the families of the killed Turks and higher Turkish aid and development projects for Gaza, Israeli media report.

The $20 million in compensation will come as a humanitarian act to a special fund organized for the families of the victims killed by the Israeli soldiers. The payment is external to the agreement, an act of good will, and doesn’t imply that Israel has acknowledged responsibility for the incident, the official stressed, according to the Jerusalem Post. The transaction will be carried out as soon as Turkey passes legislation making it impossible for the families to file further claims against Israeli officers or soldiers.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has reportedly pledged to make efforts to release the bodies of two Israeli soldiers that are held by the Hamas organization in the Gaza Strip and two other Israeli civilians.

“We asked for and received a document in which the Turkish president instructs the relevant Turkish agencies to work toward resolution of the issue of those kidnapped and missing. The document is in our hands, that’s what Turkey can do for now,” the official said, according to the Times of Israel.

The deal is to be signed on Tuesday by Foreign Ministry Director Dore Gold and his Turkish counterpart, Mevlut Cavusoglu.

Two of Turkey’s conditions for normalizing diplomatic relations that involved an apology and compensation are going to be fully met, reports say. The third demand – lifting the Gaza blockade – was a matter of disagreement and called for a compromise.

Israel will reportedly allow Turkey to help with the completion of a hospital in the Palestinian enclave and the construction of a new power station as well as a plant for desalination of water.

The Istanbul-based Foundation for Human Rights and Freedoms and Humanitarian Relief (IHH) has expressed its objections to the agreement on its official Twitter feed, both in English and Turkish. It includes 12 points that explain why Turkey shouldn’t be constrained with the terms of the deal, especially stressing that the agreement “should be based on the conditions of abolishing the blockade, not the embargo.”

June 26, 2016 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, War Crimes | , , , , | Leave a comment

Google, YouTube, Facebook, Others, Now Using Automated Blocking of ‘Extremist’ Content

By Peter Van Buren | We Meant Well | June 25, 2016

The web’s biggest content providers have started using automation to remove “extremist propaganda” videos from their sites.

Censoring Content

YouTube (owned by Google) and Facebook are among the sites deploying systems to block or rapidly take down Islamic State videos and other similar material, sources said, though no company would confirm the action.

The technology employed was originally developed to remove copyright-protected content on video sites. It looks for “hashes,” unique digital fingerprints that Internet companies automatically assign to specific videos, allowing all content with matching fingerprints to be removed rapidly. Someone finds an offensive video, tags it, and then searches find other copies across the Internet.

Newly posted videos would be checked against a database of banned content to identify unauthorized information.

The system was kicked off in late April, amid pressure from an Obama White House concerned about online radicalization. Internet companies held a conference call to discuss options, including use of a content-blocking system put forward by the private Counter Extremism Project, a nonprofit controlled in part by George W. Bush Homeland Security Advisor Frances Townsend.

Get it yet?

Government and private industry will decide what content you (as well as journalists and academics) may see on the Internet. What is and is not allowable will be decided by a closed process, and will be automated. A database will be drawn upon for decision making.

Databases and tagging can be hacked/manipulated, perhaps by governmental intelligence organizations, maybe some bad guys, hell, even by advertisers to control what is available to you online.

Since content removed equals content prohibited, you’ll never know what you can’t see. The obvious slippery slope is in decisions about what is “extremist” and what is legitimate free, political speech that, while offensive, has a right to be heard and a place in the market of ideas.

So how about blocking all videos of police violence during say a Ferguson/Baltimore scenario, so as not to “inflame” a situation?

And even if Government A plays nicely, Government B may not, and dictatorships and oligarchies will have a new tool for repression. In the same way Western companies are forced now by China, for example, to adjust content, they will likely be forced to add things to the no-fly database of ideas. Corporations will be in a position to censor things on behalf of governments.

Via the Edward Snowden documents, we already know that many tech companies cooperate directly with the NSA and others, either voluntarily, or under pressure from secret national security practices and laws. It is not a matter of “it can happen here,” but one of “it is already happening here.”

But, some will say, Google, et al, are private companies. They can do what they want with their businesses, and you don’t have to use them.

Certain private businesses, such as power companies and transportation providers, have become clearly so much a part of society that they indeed can’t just do what they want. They become public utilities, and there is no doubt that organizations like Google are squarely in the category.

Lastly, for those who prefer dictionary things, do check up on the definition of true fascism: a collusion between government and industry.

June 26, 2016 Posted by | Full Spectrum Dominance | , , , , , | 2 Comments

If at first the PTB don’t succeed…. just have another referendum

OffGuardian | June 25, 2016

We know how the EU responds when referendums don’t go the way they’re supposed to. Yes, that’s right, they either ignore it, or insist on a second vote (and very often, as if by magic, this one yields the right result). Any idea that yesterday’s vote means the UK will now definitely leave the EU is certainly premature very possibly a pipe dream.


So, we need to view the alleged “petition” that was started yesterday for a second Brexit referendum, very much in this light and with a great deal of cynicism. if it wasn’t made in Langley, well, that is still very much its spiritual home.

The Guardian – of course – is currently pushing the petition story for all it’s worth, stripping it of its context and selling it as some sort of spontaneous expression of “love” or whatever essentially empty social media virtue-signalling they think will have maximum impact for minimum content. There are pictures of well-off, well-nourished and nicely posed young things holding banners proclaiming themselves to be “European, not British.”


Which just make some of us want to take these children by the hand and explain to them that a) actually you are both, and b) Europe isn’t the EU. But there’s no place here for rational conversation. The Graun is simply cheerleading the inevitable counter-move against what looks like a genuine, and radical popular vote. The fact this strategy is being sold to us, as are all the anti-democracy strategies now, in fake “grass roots” gaudy, should not deceive us.

The real “grass roots” have just spoken. And if – as is quite possible – the “petition for a 2nd referendum” succeeds, and if this one, following the usual pattern, reverses the previous vote, it will be the triumph of the bankers, the bureaucrats and the NATO war machine over the will of the people. Nothing to cheer there.

June 26, 2016 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Deception, Mainstream Media, Warmongering | , | Leave a comment

Big Brother’s Virtual Reality

By Linh Dinh – Postcards from the End of [the] America[n Empire] – June 23, 2016

A billboard for Comcast pitches a lineup of “reality” shows, with this caption, “Recommended for you. Because real reality is boring.”

In contemporary America, real reality is also less real than Big Brother’s cartoony version. While we’re driving, walking, at work, lying in bed or even in the bathroom, Big Brother dictates what we know. Big Brother’s hypnotic screens have become our arbitrator of reality.

What capture us most are not the propaganda images, which can be ludicrously unconvincing, but the voice over. If Big Brother says it, it must be true.

Unlike in Orwell’s 1984, Big Brother does not speak to us in one stern voice. Deploying many puppets, Big Brother will humor, cajole and even uplift. Despite apparent divergences of opinions or even contradictions, Big Brother’s essential messages will always come through most clearly and persistently.

Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders, for example, both speak for Big Brother. While Clinton compares Vladimir Putin to Adolf Hitler, Sanders states, “To temper Russian aggression, we must freeze Russian government assets all over the world, and encourage international corporations with huge investments in Russia to divest from that nation’s increasingly hostile political aims.”

Russia is a threat to world peace, they both agree. In boring reality, however, it is the United States that has surrounded Russia with missiles, staged provocative war games on Russia’s borders and pushed Georgia and Ukraine into wars with Russia.

Donald Trump, on the other hand, is used by Big Brother to fan hatred and paranoia of Muslims. From 9/11 to the Orlando Shooting, every “Muslim” terror attack on American soil has been framed and narrated, with no real evidence, by Big Brother. As with the Boston Bombing, Portland Christmas Tree Plot and the Shoe Bomber Plot, etc., Big Brother has either steered and coached the alleged terrorists, or had foreknowledge of them.

In boring reality, the US has also attacked Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Yemen, Pakistan and Syria. Waging war on all these Muslim countries, the US has killed millions and generated millions more in refugees. According to Big Brother, however, the US is not a most brutal and systematic assailant of Muslims, but their hapless target.

Killing Muslims and stealing their land, Israel has also painted itself as a civilized, dignified and unbelievably restrained victim of barbaric Muslim terror.

Without Israel, the US would not be killing and demonizing Muslims endlessly, nor would it suffer these terror attacks pinned on Muslims. Without Israel, not just the US but the entire world would be much more peaceful.

No one remembers the Portland case. The FBI prevented Mohamed Osman Mohamud from working in Alaska so that he could be snared into a terror plot concocted by the FBI. A bomb-loaded van, provided by the FBI, was to be detonated to kill kids celebrating Christmas around a downtown tree.

Though the FBI had recorded and filmed Mohamud extensively, it could not produce the one tape where Mohamud supposedly incriminated himself. Big Brother tells us the recorder had a malfunction at that exact moment, and we don’t keel over laughing, such is our divorce from common sense.

After the Orlando Shooting, we have preposterous testimonies by purported survivors, witnesses and relatives of victims. Angel Colon was supposedly shot once in the hand, once in the hip and three times in one leg, all from an assault rifle at close range. On top of this, Colon was supposedly dragged over broken glass so that his back and buttocks were all cut up. Just three days later, however, Colon had recovered well enough to be presented to the press to recount his ordeal in amazing detail. Though lying face down and pretending to be dead, and in a darkened room, no less, Colon could see that the gunman was aiming for his head when Colon’s hand was hit. He also witnessed the woman lying next to him being killed. This sort of eidetic recall is typical of those whose only knowledge of shootings comes from movies. Colon has also been broadcast from his hospital bed, smiling and lifting, quite casually, his supposedly shattered leg.

Supposed witness Luis Burbano claims to have seen a bullet sticking about five inches from a victim’s leg. Even unfired, a R-15 bullet is just over two inches long, Luis.

Filmed repeatedly, from the very night of the shooting, Christine Leinonen is seen making all sorts of crying sounds and faces, but without actually shedding a tear. While her son was still unaccounted for, Leinonen blubbered, “This is a club that nobody wants to be in. Please, could we do something with the assault weapons so that we could stop this club from ever getting any new members? I beg all of you, please. I want you to know about my son. When he was in high school, he started the Gay-Straight Alliance, and he won the humanitarian award to bring gays and straights together. I’ve been so proud of him for that. Please, let’s all just get along. We’re on this earth for such a short time. Let’s try to get rid of the hatred and the violence, please!”

The Huffington Post deems Leinonen’s discharge “a powerful and devastating plea for more gun control.” Less prone to cow pie, Lucius Nonesuch, a commenter at Unz Review, observes, “It’s not the language of anyone’s everyday speech, nor is it anything like good literary language—it’s more like a bad MFA creative writing student’s verbiage. These ‘average’ people use impossibly bad metaphors and unbelievable figures of speech—the supposed mother above has now “joined a club,” the club of parents who have lost a child to gun violence—how does this dolt of a woman come up with this trite nonsense on her own? It is not her language, it is the language of a Bolshevik Communications Major. Undeniably bad language—and yet completely not right coming from her mouth.”

Thank you, Lucius Nonesuch. If more Americans were like you, we wouldn’t be hoodwinked endlessly by Big Brother. As is, we’re doomed.

June 26, 2016 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Deception, False Flag Terrorism, Full Spectrum Dominance, Timeless or most popular | , | 1 Comment

Guardian Watch: Insults fly in post-Brexit hysteria

OffGuardian | June 25, 2016

The world is still reeling from the referendum results – there is uncertainty in the air, real uncertainty, a rare creature in the modern era of controlled media consensus and carefully directed narrative. Again and again the thoughts are echoed: nobody expected this to happen. David Cameron was positive his side had won. Oliver Imhof wrote an article threatening to leave “Brexit Britain”, comfortable in the knowledge that “at no point did I think it could really happen.” You get the impression even Boris Johnson and Nigel Farage never expected to win.

Nobody expected this to happen – Least of all The Guardian… and the reactions? They have been hysterical, in every sense of the word.

The sheer volume of opinion is evidence of an institutional panic. Polly Toynbee’s reaction, always the paragon of understatement:

Catastrophe. Britain has broken apart. An uprising of resentment by the left-behind has torn us in two, a country wrecked by a yawning class divide stretched wider by recession and austerity.

You’d be forgiven for thinking that the referendum had been for turning off the sun, banning talking, or killing the first born son of every family in Britain…rather than a return to a state of affairs that has existed for all but the last 40 years of human history. Such is the level of the destruction.

The Climate is ruined. The FTSE 100 plummeted to levels not seen since last Thursday. The pound is now worth 7 cents less than it was last week. British science is already nearly destroyed. The arts world will regress, and collapse. British stocks crashed… less than half as much as European stocks. The FTSE 100 actually ended the week on a small gain… but ARRGHH! Panic!

But of course, the (as yet totally underwhelming and mostly imaginary) financial costs are nothing compared to the spiritual, moral costs.

We woke up in a different country”, says Jonathan Freedland, absolutely shocked that 52% of the country should “reject authority” after only a generation or so of being exploited, lied to and suffering a general decline in living standards.

Who knows, perhaps the worst effects can be avoided altogether. But we should not be under any illusions. This is not the country it was yesterday. That place has gone for ever.

An assertion that would, perhaps, be greeted with more than a few smiles in many of the places we have recently bombed in the name of protecting “European values”.

I was not aware, until yesterday morning, that more than half of the people of Britain were racists. For all of Britain’s various social problems, I have never observed much in the way of strong racism. Far-right parties like the BNP get almost no traction in elections. There aren’t neo-Nazi marches in London that compare to the ones in Lviv or Berlin.

Nevertheless…apparently,we are now totally controlled by xenophobia. The country is now cruel and racist. Joseph Harker’s column declares:

… in the wake of the EU referendum people across the UK are fearful of the intolerance that has been unleashed…

Bear in mind this piece was published at 1.37pm yesterday afternoon, literally less than 12 hours after the result was announced. We’ll do Joseph some credit and assume he spent more than forty minutes writing this up – let’s say he started writing at exactly noon. That gives him eight hours to survey these “people across the UK” who, one can only assume, were merely the people on his bus route that morning. He “understands” that the vote wasn’t about race, that people want economic control of their country back… but actually it WAS about race, and we’re all racists.

The initial, panic-stricken, meltdown could not last of course. What quickly became more important was BLAME. And you know who the Guardian, a notionally liberal and inclusive paper, have chosen to blame? The old, the poor, the uneducated… oh, and Jeremy Corbyn of course. Who, I suppose, some would argue is all three.

Pretty soon after the results were announced, YouGov released their pretty graphs demonstrating that Leave won because old, stupid, poor people voted for them. I am unclear how exactly the YouGov figures were collated, but given that right up to the wire YouGov were predicting Remain would win, I see no reason to trust any of their information. In fact they predicted a 52-48 result for staying the EU… so as far as we know all of their figures are totally ass-backwards.

But let’s put that aside – let us generously assume that YouGov have even the faintest notion of what they are talking about. Do we demand a revote because the wrong people won? Is this how democracy works? According to Rhiannon Lucy Cosslett, the most forgettable of the Graun’s feminist-clickbait typing pool, yes. Yes it is.

If you’re young and angry about the EU referendum, you’re right to be”

… declares her headline. It is just one article, of many that have appeared all over the media, citing the reported age demographics of the two voting camps. Claiming that “old people” have ruined the futures of the young… because they are old and stupid and racist.

The general inversion in western society, compared to other global societies, where we prize youth and inexperience over the merits of elder wisdom, is an ongoing problem. A bigger discussion for a different time. Talking only in the specific – only about this vote – this is still a ridiculous and insulting position to take up.

The “old people” being discussed would have been young in the 1960s and 70s. They would be old hippies and baby-boomers. The idea of “grandma being a bit racist in and old-fashioned way”, does not work when today’s grandmas were listening to the Beatles and marching against Vietnam. These “old people” are the generation that voted FOR the EU last time, and now have 40+ years of experience of living with their decision. Do we do them credit, and assume they have changed their minds based on their life experience? Should we respect that 40 years of living and working in this country means people have EARNED their right to be heard? No, we are encouraged to dismiss them and insult their motives.

Young people, and I speak as one myself, tend to think selfishly. Teenagers are, for the most part, egomaniacal monsters – certain of their own brilliance, positive they are thinking original thoughts, and dismissive of authority and experience. It’s a phase, you grow out of it. Slowly. The young people complaining about old voters, and the authors encouraging and enabling this attitude, are assuming that older voters, likewise, think first of themselves. This is an insult, voters in their 60s and 70s would more likely be voting for the future of their children and grandchildren. To ignore that facet of their vote is unfair and immoral.

Of course, even if they were voting selfishly… so what? Everyone has that right.

It does not matter – the narrative is now set. The vote wasn’t fair, because the wrong people voted. That will be the battle cry.

In hedging their bets, should Leave win, the Guardian took up an odd position pre-referendum. Its editorial line became that, perhaps, voting isn’t that democratic. First there was David Mitchell (sensible shirt and neat beard, every inch the Guardianista caricature) arguing that Parliament should decide this issue, not us, because we are too stupid and underqualified. Then there was NatNug, always a source of prime neo-liberal insanity, declaring that “the mob” had too much influence, and that democracy should be about our “elite institutions” telling us what to do. Yes, seriously.

In keeping with this theme, a fresh column disparages the very idea of referenda:

After what we have experienced in the past month, we need political reform more than ever. But the verdict on referendums should be a ruthless one. Never again.

To back up his opinion he cites the European Council on Foreign Relations, a pan-European “think-tank” staffed by Blairites and funded by George Soros, who say that there are too many referenda and it isn’t fair.

No one expected this to happen, and they will go out of their way to make sure it never happens again.

June 26, 2016 Posted by | Deception, Mainstream Media, Warmongering | , , | Leave a comment

Brexit Shatters EU and Its Washington Bond

By Finian CUNNINGHAM | Strategic Culture Foundation | 26.06.2016

The British rejection of European Union membership came like a brick slamming into a pane of glass. The impact has stunned observers, radiated shockwaves and suddenly thrown up an arresting vista of cracks and jagged shards.

A crestfallen British Prime Minister David Cameron handed in his resignation only hours after the result showing the majority of Britons had voted for their nation to leave the EU – after 43 years of membership.

The victory for the «Leave» campaign was decisive. Some 52 per cent of British citizens voted against 48 per cent who wanted to «Remain» within the 28-nation bloc. Conservative Party premier Cameron and the leaders of the other main political parties – Labour, Scottish Nationalists, Liberal Democrats – had joined ranks to campaign for Britain to stay in the EU.

But in the end the popular vote rejected their pleas and instead backed the anti-EU stance of Boris Johnston, the former mayor of London who led Conservatives opposed to membership, in league with the more stridently Eurosceptic and anti-immigration United Kingdom Independence Party, led by Nigel Farage. The flamboyant Johnson is now tipped to take over as leader of the Conservatives and maybe future prime minister.

The repercussions of the so-called Brexit are multifaceted. British and international reactions struggled to assimilate the ramifications. This is partly due to a sense of astonishment that the United Kingdom had actually voted to leave. Not only did the result defy all the main political parties, it also repudiated a massive campaign endorsing continued EU membership, with what Leave campaigners decried as a «project of fear».

Cameron’s government had issued dire warnings of economic and financial mayhem if the country opted out of the EU. That call was backed by top British companies, City of London financial executives, and an array of international institutions, including the IMF and OECD. Days before the referendum was held, billionaire financial speculator George Soros predicted disaster for the British economy in the event of a Brexit.

European governments openly urged a Remain vote, while American President Barack Obama said that Britain would no longer be given «special rights» as a trading partner if it left the EU.

In the same week of the referendum, the US-led NATO military alliance also weighed in with grave warnings of increased security risks for Britain if it quit the European bloc.

In spite of this wall of pressure, if not blatant intimidation, the British electorate rejected EU membership. And in the early media coverage of the result, there was a palpable sense of disbelief among the chattering classes that the ordinary British people had gone their own way.

Apart from Cameron tendering his resignation, other British constitutional cracks split wide open on news of the Brexit.

The Leave result was driven mainly by English and Welsh voters, in contrast to Scotland and Northern Ireland. In Scotland, where a majority had voted to remain within the EU, the nationalist dominated regional assembly led by First Minister Nicola Sturgeon vowed that a second independence referendum was now on the table. In the previous independence plebiscite, in September 2014, the Scots voted then to stay within the United Kingdom largely as a way of securing continued EU membership by remaining an integral part of the UK. And with most Scots wanting to remain within the EU, the likelihood is that they would now reject the union with a «Brexited» England.

Similarly, in Northern Ireland the EU Remain vote carried the day. Nationalist Sinn Fein leader Gerry Adams said that London had hence lost its mandate to rule Northern Ireland, and he called for a referendum on Irish unity, which could lead to Britain relinquishing its centuries-old jurisdiction on the island of Ireland.

In short, the Brexit vote has not only severed Britain’s union with the rest of Europe, it has also unleashed secessionist forces presaging the dissolution of the United Kingdom’s own internal union.

Across Europe, the stunning British vote to leave was met with euphoric applause from similar anti-EU movements. In France, the National Front leader Marine Le Pen hailed the result as a «blow for freedom» and she demanded that the French nation be immediately given the right to have a referendum on EU membership.

Le Pen’s declaration for an EU referendum was echoed in Germany, Italy, The Netherlands, Denmark and Sweden.

Several recent polls in these countries have shown growing – if not majority – support for a similar Brexit-style rejection of the EU. That is certainly alarming for the incumbent governments given that these countries represent founding members of the European project, which began nearly 70 years ago following the Second World War.

The EU establishment, represented by the Brussels administrative centre and pro-EU governments, is reeling from the Brexit shock.

European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker reportedly held emergency meetings with European Parliament leader Martin Schulz and European Council chief Donald Tusk; while EU foreign ministers convened in Berlin to discuss the permutations and how to stabilize the remaining 27-member bloc. Britain is the second biggest economy in the EU after Germany, so its negotiated departure over the next two years is a formidable challenge.

Over the next days, German Chancellor Angela Merkel is to hold crisis talks with French President Francois Hollande and Italian premier Matteo Renzi.

What these leaders fear most is that the Brexit will unleash a «domino effect» right across the whole of Europe. In virtually every country, including the foundational members, anti-EU parties are on the rise and flourishing. There is a veritable popular revolt against the EU establishment, which has come to be seen as undemocratic, autocratic and unresponsive to pressing social needs of employment, public services and general civic welfare.

European governments have got no-one else to blame but themselves. Whether they are nominally right, left or center, all conventional political parties – and the EU establishment that reflects them – have become ossified and inflexibly subordinate to neoliberal capitalist dictate. This has, in turn, engendered widespread poverty, unemployment and economic austerity, while the profits accrue to a tiny elite. The EU has become a cage of locked-in capitalist globalization, seemingly with no escape, as with much of the Westernized world.

Alternative opposition parties may not always express critique in such an anti-capitalist way, but they are united in their repudiation of what they see as a centralized oligarchy that operates out of Brussels. This has led to a counter-movement towards nationally controlled economies, as opposed to globalized form.

It is doubtful that many of the anti-EU parties can deliver remedial policies to what is the stagnancy of capitalist economics in the 21st Century. But one thing is sure: their supporters want to reject the failures of the status quo that is embodied in the contemporary EU.

An equally important form of inflexibility seen in the EU bloc is in foreign policy. The EU seems to have become a passive replica of the US-led NATO military alliance and under the thumb of Washington’s decree. Granted, most of the membership overlaps between the two organizations. But for many of the EU’s 500 million citizens, the EU’s lack of independence in foreign policy from Washington is a source of consternation.

The dangerous and economically damaging stand-off between Europe and Russia, largely at the behest of Washington, is a classic illustration of the problem.

The kowtowing by European governments and the Brussels administration to Washington’s policy of hostility towards Moscow is emblematic of the unaccountable and undemocratic nature of the EU bloc.

So too is the refugee crisis assailing European countries, which can be traced directly back to criminal US-led wars in North Africa and the Middle East, which the EU has colluded in or acquiesced to. And now is bearing the brunt of due to its servility towards Washington.

The popular revolt against the EU is far from homogenous. Some elements are impelled by reactionary, xenophobic nationalism. Some by chauvinism and romanticized notions of «traditional capitalism». Among some elements, there may even be fervent support for NATO militarism and pro-American hostility towards Russia.

But with Britain’s departure from the EU, Washington and the NATO alliance has lost one its most ardent supporters within the bloc. The Cameron government, after all, was the major proponent of tough sanctions on Russia over the Ukraine crisis, and London’s Atlanticist bias had preponderant leverage on the overall EU foreign policy position.

Britain leaving the EU can be seen as a blow to undermine the sway of Washington and NATO over Europe. And this progressive end was also a factor in support for the Brexit, as it is in the wider social revolt across Europe. The European revolt is not all about rightwing reactionaries; it is also about creating more democratic, independent European states, even if that necessitates the seemingly retrograde step of breaking up the EU under its present form.

The Brexit thus heralds much more than the shattering of the EU. On a national level, the United Kingdom is also prone to fracturing, while at the international level the Atlanticist bond with which Washington has dominated the EU is another fracture point.

Like the proverbial pane of glass, inflexible structures are always susceptible – at some stage – to fragmentation. The EU appears to have reached that critical pressure point.

June 26, 2016 Posted by | Economics, Militarism | , , , | 1 Comment