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Noam Chomsky and Zionism

The Kevin Barrett-Chomsky Dispute in Historical Perspective – Seventh part of the series titled “9/11 and the Zionist Question” – Read the sixth part here.

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By Prof. Tony Hall | American Herald Tribune | July 30, 2016

Understanding of the nature of the lies and crimes of 9/11 has moved quite far in the decade between the publication of Barrie Zwicker’s Towers of Deception in 2006 and Kevin Barrett’s 2016 presentation at the Left Forum. Where Zwicker emphasized Chomsky’s connection to the US deep state, Kevin Barrett views Chomsky as a Zionist with deep attachments to Israel where he lived and worked on a kibbutz in the early 1950s.

Chomsky’s relationship with Israel is outlined in flattering terms in a fluff piece in a publication entitled Tablet, a heavily pro-Zionist venue featuring other interviews with the likes of Elliot Abrams. Abrams was an influential member of the Project for the New American Century, the neocon lobby group that in 2000 notoriously signaled the forthcoming 9/11 strikes by calling for “something like a new Pearl Harbor.”

In the Tablet interview, Noam Chomsky explained the attachments and preoccupations of his Jewish orthodox parents. In his seminal years, Hebrew was the main language of the Chomsky family, a linguistic asset that the younger Chomsky would later call upon in his career as a student of linguistics.

Noam Chomsky’s father pointed his son towards the writings of Jewish philosopher Ahad Ha’am. Chomsky looked back fondly on his father’s account of Ha’am’s advocacy of “a Zionist revival in Israel, in Palestine.” The aim of this revival would be to create “a cultural center for the Jewish people.” Chomsky elaborates, explaining Ha’am’s view that “Jews as primarily a Diaspora community needed a cultural center that has a physical presence. Ha’am was said to be very sympathetic to the Palestinians.” Ha’am wanted kindly treatment of the Palestinians but he left no doubt that they should move aside to make room for what Chomsky refers to again and again as a “Jewish cultural center.”

In the Tablet article Chomsky’s orientation towards Israel is publicly portrayed as that of a loyalist calling for a kinder gentler form of Zionism. As Kevin Barrett sees it, however, Chomsky’s willingness to criticize the Israeli state, but especially its abuses and assaults directed at the Palestinian people, should not be allowed to take away from understanding that he is a committed Zionist intent on protecting and advancing Israel’s interests.

Chomsky’s position on 9/11 has been replicated throughout much of the Left where well-funded gatekeeping, sponsored by the likes of George Soros’ Open Society Foundation, is indeed rife. There is a conspicuous absence of leading Jewish intellectuals that have publicly attempted to decipher what actually transpired in New York, Washington and the air lanes of the northeastern United States during the transformative day of September 11, 2001. Consider, for instance, the relationship of Miko Peled, Medea Benjamin, Michael Albert, David Corn, Amy Goodman, George Monbiot, Cy Gonick, Judy Rebick to the enterprise of exposing the lies and crimes of 9/11. Their evasiveness or outright hostility to the 9/11 skeptics is shared by many non-Jewish public intellectuals including Chris Hedges, John Pilger, and Tariq Ali.

Some, but especially Chomsky, have gone beyond maintaining a strategic silence to incite smear campaigns against those that have displayed skepticism towards the official narrative of 9/11. Chomsky sets the bar low in portraying the demeaned “truthers” as an undifferentiated collection of stupid, backward and decrepit souls. “Their lives are no good… Their lives are collapsing… They are people at a loss… Nothing makes any sense… They don’t understand what an explanation is… They think they are experts in physics and civil engineering on the basis of one hour on the Internet.”

These comments reflect the shockingly low level of Chomsky’s near hysterical effort to divert attention away from evidence of what really transpired on 9/11. This type of personalized attack, as if the 9/11 Truth Movement is collectively guilty of some sort of horrific thought crime, replicates on ideological grounds some of the worst attributes of racism and bigotry.

Unfortunately Chomsky’s interventions are fairly representative of the overall quality of many Zionist attacks on the 9/11 Truth Movement.  As is especially clear in the writings of Jonathan Kay, for instance, Zionist smear tactics directed at 9/11 “truthers” extend many of the same themes of induced hatred directed at Muslims by the Zionist propagandists in charge of the Islamophobia Industry.

Chomsky’s critical orientation to the actions and power structure of the Israeli government is similar to his critical orientation to the actions and power structure of the United States. Chomsky’s bottom line, however, is his attachment to the Jewish state as the site of a Jewish cultural renaissance that he seeks to advance and protect.

Chomsky refuses to accept that US foreign policy and the foreign policies of the former dependencies of Anglo-American empire have become subordinate to the imperatives of Zionist lobbies as well as to the networks of media, banking and corporate power that serve them. These lobbies figure prominently in the formulation and execution of the Israeli government’s foreign policies. Organizations like the B’nai Brith or Abe Foxman’s thuggish Anti-Defamation League are in reality ideological and political proxy armies. Their role is to silence critics of the Israeli government, to brand as anti-semitic any efforts to identify fundamental disparities in access to power.

All these factors converge to expose Chomsky’s role in serving the dominant clique that emerged from the global coup d’état of September 11, 2001. Chomsky’s power-serving misrepresentations on this subject present an important window into the study of the relationship between 9/11 and the structuring of national and global hierarchies of power. What is the role of universities and the media in the connections linking 9/11 to the Zionist Question, a contemporary extension of what Karl Marx and others used to refer to frequently in European literature as the Jewish Question?

You will read “A Public Intellectual Outside the Protections of the Academy” in the next part.

August 12, 2016 Posted by | Deception, Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, False Flag Terrorism, Islamophobia | , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Trump: Americans May Be Tried In Military Tribunals Under His Administration

By Jonathan Turley | August 12, 2016

I have long been a critic of military tribunals as constitutionally dubious and practically ineffectual institutions. The tribunals at Guantanamo Bay have resulted in few actual trials and undermined the standing of the United States as a nation committed to the rule of law. The principle rationale cited by former officials in defense of Gitmo has been that it would not be used to try citizens. Now in a deeply disturbing interview, GOP presidential nominee Donald Trump has stated that he might try citizens at Gitmo — maintaining a shadow court system for stripping citizens of basic rights of due process just a few miles off the United States shore.

As an attorney who has long practiced in the national security field (including terrorism cases), the tribunal system has never made a great deal of sense to me. Federal courts have long tried terrorists and the government has a high success rate in such cases. The creation of a faux court system only gives our enemies a rallying cry and fuels those who to call us hypocrites.

Those concerns are magnified by Trump’s dismissal of any distinction between citizens and non-citizens in the use of such tribunals. In an interview with the Miami Herald on Thursday, Trump was asked if he would use the tribunals against U.S. citizens. Trump responded: “Well, I know that they want to try them in our regular court systems, and I don’t like that at all. I don’t like that at all. I would say they could be tried there, that would be fine.”

That may be fine in Trump’s view but it would also be unconstitutional. Presidents are not allowed to create alternative court systems for denying citizens of core rights at their discretion. Such a Caesar-like role runs against the very grain of the American constitutional system. The statement by Trump reflects a disconcerting lack of faith in our court system and a fundamental misunderstanding of the limits placed upon presidents in our constitutional system.

August 12, 2016 Posted by | Civil Liberties | , , , | 1 Comment

US Plans to Modernize Nuclear Triad are ‘Foolish’

Sputnik — 12.08.2016

WASHINGTON — The United States is modernizing its nuclear Triad with particular emphasis on US Air Force needs.

“I think starting this round of a new nuclear arms race is extremely foolish and it is based on a lack of understanding,” Perry said. “We are talking about huge expenditures here and it is hardly being discussed or debated and we’re just going ahead with it.”

In October 2015, Northrop Grumman, a US global aerospace and defense technology company, was awarded a development contract to build the next generation B-21 strategic bomber, while Lockheed Martin and Boeing said they planned to submit proposals to develop the GBSD ICBM.

“Nobody really knows what the cost is [for these systems] but people drop figures like $1 trillion,” Perry stated. “But I don’t know what the right number is — if anything, it [$1 trillion] is on the low side.”

Cost considerations are secondary in the new nuclear arms race, Perry noted.

“I’m trying to make people aware of just how dangerous, how really dangerous, this damn business is,” Perry said. “People don’t relate to that and they think it is just another issue of whether we should build these bombers or build these missiles or not.”

The weakness in the US nuclear Triad is the silo-based ICBM’s providing adversaries with known target locations and would be most likely to precipitate a nuclear war, Perry observed.

“If there is a nuclear war, they [ICBM’s] would be the first targets and the problem here is that we know all that and therefore in our alert system, if we see an indication of a launch coming we have to decide whether to launch those ICBM’s right away,” Perry stated. “The ICBM’s are the only ones that pose that particular problem.”

Nuclear Security Tougher Than Cold War Era Due to Cyberthreats

Ensuring the security of nuclear weapons is harder today than during the Cold War years because of the looming cyberthreats that might compromise nuclear weapons command and control systems or lead to an accidental launch.

“It is harder today than it was during the Cold War and there is the danger of cyber confusion or some cyber mistake,” Perry said. “Or someone playing malicious games with cyber and going after our command and control systems.”

The reappearance of Cold War-era nuclear brinkmanship, Perry observed, combined with emerging cyber vulnerabilities makes the likelihood of human or software errors, false alarms, and accidental launches more likely.

“The danger was, and is… that we will go to war by accident,” Perry said. “During the Cold War, one [accident] which looked very, very real and had people convinced it was the real thing was caused by an operator putting a training tape in the computer system and, of course, the training tape was designed to look real, so that was a human error.”

Human errors and false alarms will happen again, and when they do, the president will have just a few minutes to decide whether he or she is going to launch intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBMs), Perry noted.

Perry was the 19th US Secretary of Defense, serving from February 1994 to January 1997. He is also the author of “My Journey to the Nuclear Brink” and director of the Preventative Defense Project at Stanford University in the US state of California.

August 12, 2016 Posted by | Militarism, Timeless or most popular | , , , , | Leave a comment

Washington considers sanctioning Moscow over DNC email leak – report

RT | August 12, 2016

US officials are considering new economic sanctions against Russia over the DNC email leak released by WikiLeaks, the Wall Street Journal reports, citing sources familiar with the situation.

Officials have not so far, however, reached common ground on how exactly to impose sanctions, the WSJ reports.

Adopting more anti-Russian economic sanctions would mean delivering public accusations against Moscow or exposing links of the alleged hackers to Russia.

The White House has so far not commented, although the FBI and intelligence agencies investigating the cyberattack have “signaled” that the attack was “almost certainly” carried out by “Russian-affiliated hackers,” according to the WSJ.

The breach of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, already compared to the Watergate scandal, is far from reaching its peak, as WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange has dropped a broad hint he has much more material to potentially publish.

Speaking in Washington DC on Thursday, House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi said she does not know exactly how the notorious DNC leak was possible, but that there could be no mistake about its initiator.

“I know for sure it is the Russians,” Pelosi told reporters, adding “we are assessing the damage.”

“This is an electronic Watergate… The Russians broke in. Who did they give the information to? I don’t know. Who dumped it? I don’t know,” she said, as quoted by the WSJ.

The Democrats are now urging the Obama administration to take decisive action.

“When the administration believes it has sufficient evidence of attribution, it will make that attribution public as well as consider any other steps necessary,” said Adam Schiff, the top Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee.

During President Barack Obama’s two terms in office, relations between Moscow and Washington have dropped to lows similar to those seen in the years of the Cold War.

Washington has already imposed a wide range of sanctions against Russian politicians and state companies following the reunification of Crimea with Russia, and accuses Moscow of being involved in the civil war in Ukraine.

Moscow has consistently denied allegations about its possible role in the hacking of US Democratic Party emails published by WikiLeaks.

“We are again seeing these maniacal attempts to exploit the Russian theme in the US election campaign,” Russian presidential spokesman Dmitry Peskov said.

Last year, President Obama signed an executive order that facilitates imposing sanctions against any country endangering US national security through cyberattacks.

“Our tools now include an executive order authorizing sanctions against those that engage in significant malicious cyber activities, such as harming our nation’s critical infrastructure – our transportation systems or power grid,” White House counterterrorism adviser Lisa Monaco said last month.

“Nations like Russia and China are growing more assertive and sophisticated in their cyber operations,” the US counterterrorism adviser claimed, before mentioning cyber threats from “non-state actors,” including Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS/ISIL).

There is the view in the US that the DNC breach is a tit-for-tat payback operation.

“They believe we are trying to influence political developments in Russia, trying to effect change, and so their natural response is to retaliate and do unto us as they think we’ve done unto them,” the director of US national intelligence, James Clapper, said last month, without making specific statements about the alleged Russian role in the DNC breach.

Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton seems to have no doubts whatsoever about the Russian involvement in the leaks.

“Russian intelligence services, which are part of the Russian government, which is under the firm control of Vladimir Putin, hacked into the DNC and we know that they arranged for a lot of those emails to be released…,” Clinton told Fox News earlier this week.

Read more:

Kremlin: Idea of Russia’s involvement in US Democratic Party mail hack is ‘absurd’

August 12, 2016 Posted by | Deception, Economics, Mainstream Media, Warmongering, Progressive Hypocrite | , , , | Leave a comment

Magical Thinking in US Foreign Policy

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By James W Carden | Consortium News | August 11, 2106

Despite America’s myriad problems domestically and internationally, its geo-strategic position remains the envy of the world. Protected in the east by the Atlantic, in the west by the Pacific, to the north by Canada and to the south by Mexico, the United States is, for all intents and purposes, impervious to a foreign invasion.

Its advanced and mobile nuclear arsenal and conventional force projection capabilities further serve as a deterrent against attacks from rival nation-states. The country’s strategic position is enhanced, too, by what Valéry Giscard d’Estaing has referred to as the “exorbitant privilege” – that of possessing the world’s reserve currency. As such, the U.S. does not face the same restraints on spending that other nations do.

Because the dollar accounts for so high a proportion of the balance sheets of other countries, the rest of the world is tacitly committed to propping up its value. Taken together, America’s isolated and protected geo-strategic position combined with the “exorbitant privilege” of the dollar means, in effect, that the U.S. has an unrivaled geo-strategic position.

Yet since the end of the Cold War, the foreign policy establishment and three successive administrations have committed the U.S. to a dangerous and ill-conceived pursuit of global military and economic hegemony which has only served to undercut the country’s economy and security. It is a pursuit that is frequently cloaked in the rhetoric of humanitarianism and “democracy promotion.”

United Nations Ambassador Samantha Power recently declared in the pages of the New York Review of Books that it is “our self-interest that requires us to get better at improving human security in the service of national security.”

Power – like nearly all members of the foreign policy establishment today – believes (or says she believes) that the way foreign governments treat their own citizens “matters because it can have a direct impact on international peace and security – and on our respective national interests.”

To bolster her argument she takes the example of the Russian government which, she claims, habitually lies to its own people about what it is really up to in Ukraine. “The elimination of critical voices inside Russia,” writes Power, “helps enable acts that are profoundly destabilizing outside of Russia.”

Power’s claims are part of the widely shared, bipartisan consensus among the post-Cold War foreign policy elites who believe that the problem is not that the United States has intervened around the world too much and too often but rather that it has intervened too little. In Power’s view, “we must never be ashamed to ask whether we have been too reticent in pressing certain governments to reform and to respond to the demands of their citizens.”

This last point is a curious claim that, I suspect, quite intentionally skirts the question of whether the U.S., by actively pushing its “pro-democracy” agenda abroad, is itself the instigator of many of those “demands” (by financing and organizing many of the groups clamoring for U.S. intervention).

Financing Destabilization

Efforts – almost too numerous to count – by USAID, the International Republican Institute and the National Endowment for Democracy, often in conjunction with various think tanks, TOR developers (software that enables anonymous communications), and George Soros-funded Open Society Institutes – have sought to materially aid a plethora of  opposition groups across the globe. (They, in turn, seek more U.S. intervention to enhance their political positions within their societies.)

Contrary to what the scholar, diplomat George Kennan urged – that diplomacy, properly executed, was necessarily a government-to-government interaction – Power believes that “we need to broaden the spectrum of whom we engage with our diplomacy.”

She writes that diplomats must court “civil society organizations” and other groups such as “teachers association, workers’ unions and leaders in the business community” – never mind the very plain fact that State Department diplomats and Commerce Department officials, among others, have been doing outreach of that sort for some time.

The results of all this U.S. meddling have been little short of disastrous. Take, for instance, the failed state of Ukraine, where USAID and other U.S. institutions spent $5 billion in the quarter century since the fall of the Soviet Union, according to Assistant Secretary of State for European Affairs Victoria Nuland (and that was before the U.S.-backed overthrow of the elected government in February 2014 and the current civil war which has claimed the lives of some 10,000 Ukrainians).

This generation of American “humanitarian” crusaders, as exemplified by the career of Ambassador Power, continually seeks to sacrifice stability on the altar of “democratic” idealism (even when that involves reversing democratic results and contributing to humanitarian suffering). Further, the problem that these efforts engender for U.S. national security interests are legion: war continues to rage in eastern Ukraine, Libya is completely destabilized, likewise Syria and Iraq.

Contrary to what Power would have us believe, the “democratization” crusade undermines, rather than strengthens U.S. national security. As the Greek statesman Pericles famously observed: “I am more afraid of our own mistakes than of our enemies’ designs.”


James W Carden is editor of The American Committee for East-West Accord’s eastwestaccord.com. He previously served as an advisor on Russia to the Special Representative for Global Inter-governmental Affairs at the US State Department.

August 12, 2016 Posted by | Progressive Hypocrite, Timeless or most popular | , , , | Leave a comment

Here’s what happened at the Putin-Erdogan summit

Russia and Turkey massively upgrade their cooperation – however, agree to differ over Syria.

By Alexander Mercouris | The Duran | August 10, 2016

As is frequently the case the most information about what Putin and Erdogan discussed and agreed with each other came out of their joint news conference. The Kremlin has provided a transcript.

Syria

Putin and Erdogan both said that they had not discussed Syria prior to the news conference and that their discussion about Syria would take place after.

This could be for any of various reasons: that restoring their bilateral relations was the bigger priority with the contentious issue of Syria being put off till later; that Putin and Erdogan did not want to spoil the mood at the press conference by revealing how far apart they still are on this issue; or that the discussions they were about to have on Syria touched on such sensitive topics that they did not want to be questioned and reveal information about them at the news conference. Probably all of these reasons were in play.

Both Putin and Erdogan did say at the press conference that their positions on Syria remain far apart. In an interview with TASS on the eve of the visit, Erdogan however showed no shift in his longstanding positions on the Syrian conflict. For example, he continued to insist that President Assad had to go: “We don’t want Syria’s disintegration, but the departure of Bashar Assad who is guilty for the deaths of 600,000 people. This is the condition for preventing this scenario. Syria’s unity cannot be kept with Assad. And we cannot support a murderer who has committed acts of state terror.”

In a point that will be particularly contentious for the Russians (and one presumes for some people in the U.S.), he even denied that Jabhat Al-Nusra is a terrorist organisation despite its connection to Al-Qaeda: “Considering that the al-Nusra front is also fighting against the Islamic State, it should not be considered as a terrorist organisation either. This is an incorrect approach.”

Other comments Erdogan made during the TASS interview strongly suggest that it was he who was ultimately behind the recent Jabhat Al-Nusra announcement that it was distancing itself from Al-Qaeda.

In a recent post, the Moon of Alabama expresses bafflement that despite the Turkish rapprochement with Russia that has taken place since the coup attempt, there is no evidence of any slackening of Turkish support for the rebels in Syria.  On the contrary, it seems that in connection with the fighting in Aleppo that support has, if anything, been stepped up.  The Moon of Alabama speculates implausibly that this is being done by the CIA on Turkish territory contrary to Erdogan’s wishes.

The true position is, as I have said previously, Erdogan has invested too much in supporting the rebellion in Syria over too long a time to make it possible for him to change course.  Were he to try to do so, he would expose himself to criticism in Turkey from many of his own supporters that he was selling out to the Russians. He would also risk a violent reaction from the many Jihadist fighters currently in Turkey, which at a time when the Turkish security forces are at their most disorganised following the coup would be highly dangerous. Beyond that, there is the fact that Erdogan is almost certainly sincere about his Syrian policy. His comments to TASS suggest as much, as do his actions on the ground.

The truth is what I said before: what we are seeing between Turkey and Russia is a strictly limited rapprochement, not a fundamental realignment. The two countries have moved closer to each other and are developing their political and economic relations at a blistering pace. However, there will be no switch in alliances, and on the question of Syria they fundamentally differ and continue to support opposing camps.  The leaderships of both countries understand this perfectly well but are not prepared to hold the improvement of their mutual relations hostage to the situation in Syria.

On one question related to Syria there may, however be progress. Erdogan’s interview with TASS shows that he is still seething at Russian allegations made earlier this year that members of his family were involved in illegal trading with ISIS:

I had earlier been told that these facts also pointed to Turkey. I asked for the relevant evidence to be demonstrated. However, no one could prove it to me. Nothing of this kind can be found with regard to Turkey. They also tried to entangle my family in this. I said, prove it, I’ll leave my post if you demonstrate the relevant evidence. I turned to those who conjured up these insinuations and asked them about whether they would leave their posts if no evidence was found. Silence followed.

His comments to TASS suggest that Erdogan might be prepared to work with the Russians to destroy ISIS.  However, the extent of that cooperation is for the moment difficult to gauge. It is unlikely to involve Russian aircraft operating from Incirlik.

As anticipated, there does appear to have been some discussion during the summit of the Russians and the Turks working together on a joint plan to end the war in Syria. In his interview with TASS, Erdogan hinted as much, also confirming that against U.S. and Saudi opposition he is also prepared to involve Iran in this plan:

Russia is fundamentally the key and most important player in establishing peace in Syria. I believe it is necessary to solve this crisis with the help of mutual action by Russia and Turkey. If the talk is about widening the circle of participants, then I already told my dear friend Vladimir [Putin] earlier: if necessary, we’ll also involve Iran in the effort. We can invite Qatar, Saudi Arabia and America. In this regard, we can form a wide circle of participants. If not, then the Russian Federation and Turkey given our common 950-km border with Syria, can take some steps, without violating Syria’s sovereignty.

However, given the differences between the Russians and the Turks over the future of President Assad and the status of Jabhat Al-Nusra, it is difficult to see at the moment how they could agree a joint position on Syria that they would be able to take forward in order to achieve a settlement of the conflict there. Doubtless the discussions between Putin and Erdogan after the press conference touched on this question. However, given the size of the gap between the two sides, it will take a long time for any consensus on the way forward between them to emerge. Most probably, it will be the situation on the ground that will decide the issue first.

The Turkish coup

Both in the press conference and in his interview with TASS, Erdogan again went out of his way to accuse the Gulen movement of being behind the recent coup attempt. I have previously speculated that Erdogan’s constant references to the Gulen movement are intended to signal that the U.S. (where Gulen is based) was somehow implicated in the coup. Nothing Erdogan said in either the press conference or the TASS interview refutes that speculation. He notably failed to say that the U.S. was not involved in the coup, or that the U.S. is Turkey’s ally and friend. On the contrary, in the TASS interview he appeared to criticise the U.S. for its foot-dragging in handing over Gulen:

In reality, even though we have demanded this man’s extradition. They say if you regard this man as a terrorist, then send us the documents. We will study them first and then take measures in accordance with U.S. legislation. True, there are some documents we had sent them before. By now, we’ve sent 85 boxfuls of paperwork on this case. In the near future, the Turkish justice minister, foreign minister, special envoy and a number of prosecutors and judges who were in charge of this matter will go to the United States and brief the American authorities in person.

By contrast, Erdogan went out of his way to thank his “friend Putin” and Russia for their support during the coup. What is more than a little strange about this however is that Erdogan does not really explain what that support was. Instead, he constantly refers to a telephone call he had from Putin the day after the coup, which he says gave Turkey “psychological support”. By that point, however, the coup had visibly failed, making it difficult to see why Erdogan should attach so much importance to this call.

The true reason for Erdogan’s gratitude to Putin and Russia is probably touched on in his comments to TASS about the reports of a Russian tip-off to Turkish intelligence warning of the coup:

This is the first time that I have heard such a thing. Even if it had really been so, those concerned would have been obliged to inform me first thing. I received no such information, not from intelligence, nor through any other channels. We don’t know who said what and to whom. I believe that this is a groundless rumour.

As I have said before, the Russians will never confirm that there was a tip-off, even if there was one, and for that reason neither will the Turks. Note, however, that Erdogan’s comments about the tip-off to TASS are very far from a denial. Instead, we are asked to believe that Erdogan of all people “doesn’t know who said what to whom” and that “this is the first time that I have heard of such a thing” despite the story being all over the Middle East media for weeks. As I have discussed previously, this looks very much like an agreed position reached by the Russians and the Turks not to deny the tip-off but to pretend to no knowledge of it. That makes it a virtual certainty the report of the tip-off is true.

Turk Stream and South Stream gas pipelines, nuclear cooperation, etc

As I discussed previously, these proved the least contentious issues, allowing for rapid progress. There is also talk of the Russians granting the Turks visa free access or at least simplified visa access to Russia.

Two points can be made briefly. Firstly, it is clear that it is the Turks rather than the Russians who are the main drivers behind both Turk Stream and the nuclear power agreement. Putin confirmed that the Turks continued to do preparatory work on Turk Stream even during the crisis in relations following the SU24 shoot-down in November. Secondly, it is clear that contrary to some reports, the Russians are not prepared to revive South Stream and that their opposition to the EU’s Third Energy Package remains as strong as ever. On the contrary, Putin made it clear that the Russians will not participate in any pipeline project that could be construed as their agreeing to the EU’s Third Energy Package. Moreover, Putin made it quite clear that he sees the U.S. (whom he referred to as “a third party”) as being behind the Third Energy Package and all the problems that exist in relation to Russia’s EU pipeline projects:

We have never politicised economic cooperation. In proposing the South Stream project initially, we assumed that our gas would go directly to EU consumers in southern Europe. However, at first the European Parliament made a decision that prevented the implementation of this project and then the European Commission sent a letter to the Bulgarian Government demanding that preparations for it stop, and ultimately we did not receive the permission of the Bulgarian authorities to enter Bulgarian territory.

Yes, now we see that Bulgaria would like to resume this project, but we incurred some losses due to the refusal of our European partners to carry out this project. So now we will not settle for just intentions and need absolutely rock solid legal guarantees. They have not been forthcoming. Initially, we regarded the Turkish Stream not even as an alternative to the South Stream but as an opportunity to expand our gas cooperation both with Turkey and Europe as a whole. One part of the Turkish Stream was designed exclusively for Turkey’s domestic consumers, given the growing economy of the Republic of Turkey. This is how we discussed the issue today. This part is beyond any doubt and its implementation may be launched very soon.

The second part related to routing our energy to Europe depends, of course, on a third party [emphasis added]. We should work out these issues with European countries and the European Commission in Brussels. Together with our Turkish partners and friends, we are prepared to work toward this, but again we need to have an agreement with all the participants.

Conclusion

In summary, the Putin – Erdogan summit went much as predicted. There is now a strong rapprochement underway between the two countries. This goes well beyond a mere detente, which is a relaxation of tensions. On the contrary, the leaders of the two countries now publicly call each other “friends”. It is not, however, a reversal of alliances. Turkey remains a member of NATO and an ally of the U.S.

In my opinion, this actually suits the Russians much better, at least for the moment. They surely know that an outright attempt to detach Turkey from NATO is for the moment impossible and might actually cause Turkey to become destabilised, which is absolutely not in their interests. However, at a time of heightened East-West tensions, they now have the leader of a key NATO state with NATO’s second biggest army calling their leader a “friend”. Sometimes it is more useful to have a friend in the enemy’s camp than a doubtful and unstable ally in one’s own. That is the situation which through a combination of skill and good luck the Russians have now manoeuvred themselves into.

August 12, 2016 Posted by | Aletho News | , , , , | 1 Comment

Three Damning New Reports on Hillary Clinton

By Stephen Lendman | August 11, 2016

So much scandalous stuff about her is known, it’s just a matter of time before the next shoe drops.

Instead of exposing her as unfit to serve, media scoundrels express one-sided support, focusing instead on bashing Trump, the most irresponsible denunciation of a presidential aspirant in US history.

Judicial Watch (JW) is a conservative watchdog organization, “promot(ing) transparency, accountability and integrity in government, politics and the law.”

On August 9 and 10, it released three new damning reports on Hillary Clinton. One involved 296 pages of State Department records – including “44 email exchanges… not previously” disclosed to the department, raising the number to 171 – besides tens of thousands of others deleted to avoid disclosure.

JW findings contradict Clinton saying “as far as she knew” all government emails from her home-based private server were given to the State Department. She lied, compounding earlier willful deception – showing she’s untrustworthy, unfit to serve and criminally indictable.

What’s known from her emails is damning, showing special favors afforded wealthy Clinton Foundation donors, concealed influence selling now exposed.

As secretary of state, she pledged “(for) the duration of (her) appointment… not to participate personally and substantially in any particular matter involving specific parties in which the (Clinton Foundation or Clinton Global Initiative) is a party or represents a party.”

Damning emails showed she lied. According to JW president Tom Fitton, “(t)hey show the Clinton Foundation, Clinton donors, and operatives worked with Hillary Clinton in potential violation of the law.”

Earlier in March, May and June, JW released other newly discovered Clinton emails at the time, dating from January 2009 when she began her tenure as secretary of state.

They show she knew about the security risk of using her home server and personal BlackBerry for official government business. They include potentially indictable evidence relating to “the battle between security officials in the State Department, National Security Administration, Clinton and her staff,” said JW.

In response to a court order in other Judicial Watch litigation, she declared under penalty of perjury that she had ‘directed that all my emails on clintonemail.com in my custody that were or are potentially federal records be provided to the Department of State, and on information and belief, this has been done.’

Newly released emails proved she lied. Can an exposed liar under oath on matters of state, guilty of perjury, be trusted to serve as US president and commander-in-chief of its military? Humanity trembles at the prospect.

A second JW report was about her involvement in New York City corruption, saying she, mayor De Blasio and developer Bruce Ratner “are carving up the city.”

It cited a Brooklyn-based Atlantic Yards project worth $5 billion, speculating on whether it’s “a giant boondoggle, generating torrents of cash for well-connected insiders.”

A third JW report included documents, showing Clinton’s then chief of staff, Cheryl Mills, was alerted in advance about the inquiry into her emails – giving her plenty of time to conceal what she didn’t want revealed.

Earlier this year, the State Department Office of Inspector General concluded that (her response to its request) was ‘inaccurate and incomplete.’

JW’s Tom Fitton commented, saying

“(t)his is evidence that Cheryl Mills covered up Hillary Clinton’s email system. (She) allowed a response to go out that was a plain lie.”

“And you can bet if Cheryl Mills knew about this inquiry, then Hillary Clinton did, too. This is all the more reason for Mrs. Clinton to finally testify under oath about the key details of her email practices.”

Instead of a daily blizzard of irresponsible Trump bashing, damning JW-released information on Clinton, and plenty more like it from other sources, should be feature front page news daily – demanding she be held accountable.


Stephen Lendman can be reached at lendmanstephen@sbcglobal.net. His new book as editor and contributor is titled Flashpoint in Ukraine: US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III.

August 12, 2016 Posted by | Corruption, Deception | , | 2 Comments