Aletho News


CIA Tries to ‘Edit the Past’ With Release of Declassified Documents on Internet

Sputnik | January 21, 2017

There is more to the CIA’s online release of unclassified documents than meets the eye, security expert Dmitry Efimov told Sputnik.

On Wednesday the CIA published roughly 930,000 documents online, totaling more than 1 million pages, which had previously only been accessible on computers at the National Archives in Maryland.The database, which is searchable via the CIA Records Search Tool (CREST), contains information from the 1940s to the 1990s, including reports from the Korean War and the Vietnam War.

The CIA had planned to publish the documents at the end of 2017, but finished the work ahead of schedule. The agency began the project following a Freedom of Information Act injunction launched in 2014 by Muckrock, a non-profit news organization.

“Access to this historically significant collection is no longer limited by geography. The American public can access these documents from the comfort of their homes,” Joseph Lambert, CIA Director of Information Management, said.

However, not everybody is convinced that the documents in the CREST database are genuine. Security expert Dmitry Efimov, a member of Moscow Council’s Advisory Committee on Security, told Radio Sputnik that he suspects many of the files are fakes.

“I think this was published on the personal orders of CIA Director Brennan, a famous neocon who is leaving along with Obama and who is probably using this opportunity to create a new stream of misinformation,” Efimov said.

“Particularly since there is no such thing as the whole truth, there is the truth which is present in the CIA’s real documents, which of course exist, but I think that a lot of work has been done to falsify a huge number of documents in this batch and change the relationship to the Vietnam War, for example.”

Commenting on the release, CIA spokesperson Heather Fritz Horniak insisted that the documents, which appear redacted, are genuine and were not released on a selective basis.

“None of this is cherry-picked,” Horniak said.

“It’s the full history. It’s good and bads.”

However, Efimov claims that the release is an attempt by the CIA to rewrite history in order to assist its political ambitions.

“The main objective of the US is the spread of liberal American democracy around the world despite the objections of the receiving country. It is in this respect that history will change, there will be new documents which don’t have sources. But the presence of a large number of hidden sources in certain documents on a specific topic says that here (in the declassified CIA documents) someone has edited the past very well.”

Among CREST’s revelations is that the CIA carried out research on topics like UFO’s, telepathy and psychic phenomena. For example, the Stargate Project, which ran from 1978 to 1995 and was intended to investigate psychic phenomena, even interviewed Israeli celebrity psychic Uri Geller in the 1980s to see if his supposed paranormal abilities could be of use in military and domestic intelligence applications.This kind of disclosure is a way to distract attention from political topics, Efimov said.

“Disclosure of the ‘Stargate’ CIA program is a wonderful theme, a great way to divert the consciousness of American society away from real problems. Just imagine how you can use that topic on CNN, in order to bring it to the attention of all American housewives. I don’t exclude the possibility that some more fine papers will appear, some kind of reports about something, which predicted something, we will get the names of some new American prophets. That is, the construction of a mythical American history that will distract the attention of Americans,” Efimov said.

January 21, 2017 Posted by | Deception | , | 2 Comments

Economist can’t handle the facts (about RT)

RT | January 21, 2017

Most economists are good with numbers. It is, after all, a prerequisite skill for the profession. Thus, it’s somewhat ironic that a publication called The Economist would be so inept with figures.

However, it’s likely the numerical errors in their latest RT demolition piece are more the result of a determination to prove a desired point rather than it being down to an actual mathematical deficiency amongst staff.

To bring you up to speed, just a few days ago, a reporter from the Economist reached out to the RT press office with a few questions. This of course is very much in line with basic journalistic practices of fact-checking and due diligence. Answers were readily provided, in good faith.

However, of all the – independently verifiable – facts and figures provided by RT to the journalist, not a single one, nor even a fragment of a comment, was actually included in the article that appeared in today’s issue of the magazine.

Instead, the Economist writes that “RT has a clever way with numbers. Its ““audience” of 550m refers to the number of people who can access its channel, not those who actually watch it. RT has never released the latter figure…”

First of all, can we please pause and reflect for a minute on the sheer inanity of passing off a 5-year-old report as something reflecting the current state of affairs, including audience? Particularly in the world of media, where revolutionary changes take place in a much shorter time span.

Anyhow, while we’d love to take credit for our cunning practices in this regard, we don’t need to, because we have facts on our side. And the fact is, very clearly stated on RT’s “About” page, in plain English, the network’s TV channels are “available to 700 million people.”“AVAILABLE.” It’s been up there for years.

Also, contrary to the Economist’s claim, RT has repeatedly provided exact figures for its actual TV audience. According to a November 2015 report from Ipsos – a leading audience research firm – which conducted a survey of TV news consumption in 38 countries, 70 million people watch RT TV channels every week.

Of that number, 36 million people watch RT weekly in 10 European countries, and is among the top 5 pan-regional news channels. RT is also among the top-5 most watched international TV news channels in the US, with a viewership of 8 million per week. These aren’t numbers that RT dreamed up, but the results of an independent study by a top-3 global market research company. Contact information for verification is also readily available.

As a matter of fact, RT provided this exact data to the Economist ! Not that the Economist would bother admitting this, because they wouldn’t want the facts to get in a way of their RT story. It’s much easier to lie about RT “never releasing the latter figure.”

Perhaps they’re really are ignorant about the world of audience research and ratings, because they follow up the aforementioned fake with the following: “a 2015 survey of the top 94 cable channels in America by Nielsen, a research firm, found that RT did not even make it into the rankings.” Here’s Nielsen 101: you have to pay to play. Or rather, you have to pay to be measured and included in the Nielsen rankings. RT chooses not to. So using the above statement to make a point about RT’s US audience makes as much sense as walking into a vegetarian shop, not finding any beefsteaks, and concluding that all the cows have gone extinct.

What about RT’s success on YouTube? Well, the Economist says not to worry about RT’s 4+ BILLION views (#1 among TV news networks) on YouTube because on the platform, RT “inflates its viewership with YouTube disaster videos.”

If the Economist had been paying attention to the Washington Post this past week, they might have noted that things aren’t quite as they wish them to be: for example, RT’s YouTube video of Trump’s victory speech received 3.7 million views, it’s live election coverage attracted 1.3 million views in on RT and RT America, and Putin’s statement on Trump’s victory got 2.4 million. And this is just a sliver of RT’s political video hits.

Since the Economist has a thing for ‘numbers’, let’s draw a small comparison. Trump’s victory speech on CNN’s YouTube Channel received about 495,000 views, BBC’s – a mere 33,500, and CBC News’ –about 1.3 million. So maybe the Economist can tell us if 3.7 million is a larger number?

What about RT’s website, what kind of scheme would the Economist try to deploy to minimize RT success there? Here, the magazine simply ignores the publicly available (and provided in an email to the publication) stats about RT’s website visits, which, at 119 million monthly (SimilarWeb, December 2016) places it well ahead of the likes of Al Jazeera, DW, Euronews, France24 and BBG (VOA + RFE/RL and other platforms).

Overall, the Economist article gives the impression that its journalists didn’t bother to read the answers to their own questions, or sacrificed the facts in a maniacal commitment to its anti-RT diatribe. Facts really can be inconvenient that way.

Influence is a rather subjective concept that can be difficult to measure. Schizophrenic coverage of Russia, which has been plaguing the mainstream media for the last year, tries to position RT simultaneously as weak and as a threat to all humanity. Media-political establishments urge their stakeholders and audiences to not overestimate RT’s influence (hello, Economist ), while emphasizing the need to spend ever more millions to counter it.

The Economist is of course entitled to its own opinion about RT’s influence. But when that opinion is built entirely around the size of RT’s audience, the Economist isn’t entitled to its own facts.

January 21, 2017 Posted by | Deception, Fake News, Mainstream Media, Warmongering | | 1 Comment

Ukraine May Have a New President in Waiting, But He’s Another Oligarch

Sputnik | January 21, 2017

In December, Ukrainian billionaire Victor Pinchuk wrote an explosive op-ed in The Wall Street Journal, laying out how Ukraine can end its conflict with Russia. Pinchuk’s plan is simple: Kiev must close its eyes on Crimea, proceed with elections in Donbass, and forget NATO. Unfortunately, elites in Kiev see his ideas as nothing less than treasonous.

Pinchuk’s appeal, published in the opinion pages of the WSJ on December 29, laid out his vision on how the new administration in Washington can try to sort out the mess in Kiev in the interests of improving relations with Moscow.

Kiev, the billionaire steel magnate wrote, must be willing to compromise, including making a genuine effort to end the civil war that’s being waged in the country’s east. Ukrainian authorities must accept local elections in the breakaway territories, and live up to their commitments under the Minsk agreements, as must Russia, the oligarch added. Crimea, he said, “must not get in the way of a deal that ends the war in the east on an equitable basis.”

Kiev sent the Ukrainian army to deal with unrest in eastern Ukraine in April 2014, after protesters refused to recognize the legitimacy of authorities who came to power in the February 2014 coup d’état. In March 2014, Crimean authorities organized a referendum, asking the peninsula’s residents if they wanted Crimea to rejoin Russia. A whopping 96% voted ‘yes’, and Moscow soon accepted the peninsula’s request.Pinchuk also made proposals on other, related fronts, suggesting that Ukraine “should consider temporarily eliminating EU membership from our stated goals for the near future.” As for NATO membership, he stressed that Kiev should “accept that Ukraine will not join NATO in the near- or midterm.” For now, he said, the country should choose neutrality. He even hinted that Kiev would be “ready to accept an incremental rollback of sanctions on Russia” if that helps to restore peace, unity and security to the country.

Pinchuk’s ideas didn’t include anything radically outside the reigning political orthodoxy in Ukraine. He didn’t propose recognizing Crimea as part of Russia, and maintained that Moscow was to blame for “initiating” the conflict in the east.

Nevertheless, as expected, the billionaire’s op-ed caused uproar both in the Ukrainian media and in political circles. Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko thundered that Kiev would never compromise on Russian ‘aggression’, and stressed that he would never abandon plans to join NATO and integrate into the EU. Pundits called the op-ed “An offer to surrender,” condemned Pinchuk’s “tone of appeasement” and defiantly proclaimed that Ukrainians would never accept his peace proposals.

Eventually, Pinchuk was even forced to apologize for publishing the article, blaming heavy editing and WSJ’s provocative headline, which read ‘Ukraine Must Make Painful Compromises for Peace With Russia.’So what was actually behind this political storm in a teacup? According to Radio Sputnik contributor Daria Cherednik, Kiev was mistaken to see Pinchuk’s op-ed a “treacherous blow to the back,” since the jab was actually “direct, open, and frontal – right in the stomach.”

With the publication of the editorial, Cherednik wrote, “all Poroshenko’s horses and all of his men were suddenly alarmed overnight, since the throne under the king had clearly started to wobble.” In fact, she added, not only was the throne wobbling, “but a contender has appeared for the king’s seat. At least that’s how it appeared to the Ukrainian president himself, and to his entourage saw things,” accusing Pinchuk of “filing down the throne’s legs.”

Pinchuk, the journalist recalled, has long been a notable figure in Ukraine’s circles of power. He’s married to the daughter of former President Leonid Kuchma, and is valued at $1.5 billion, making him the third richest person in Ukraine. “But most importantly,” Cherednik added, “he hasn’t been tainted in any political scandal.”Pinchuk “even managed to help finance Hillary Clinton’s election campaign without creating problems with Donald Trump,” the journalist wrote. The oligarch had indeed used the Victor Pinchuk Foundation to make millions of dollars in contributions to the Clinton Foundation, but also paid $150,000 to the Trump Foundation in exchange for a speech by then-candidate Trump in September 2015.

The billionaire’s op-ed in the WSJ was perceived as a stab in the back for obvious reasons, Cherednik stressed. “How else could the current Ukrainian establishment perceive Pinchuk after such ‘seditious speeches’? It would be one thing if he presented his ideas on some local television channel, something that could be cast off as insane and forgotten. But he published his thoughts in an American newspaper. What if the White House reads the article (it surely has) and thinks that Victor Pinchuk is a reasonable figure who’s able to negotiate, and therefore a very suitable candidate for the presidency?”

Kiev certainly didn’t appreciate Pinchuk’s “creative” approach, Cherednik suggested. “Poroshenko and his staff even refused to participate in the traditional breakfast organized by the businessman in Davos on Thursday. And that’s a shame. David Cameron and Henry Kissinger decided that this would be quite a worthy event and did not reject the invitation.” Ultimately, the journalist noted, President Poroshenko was left “standing outside the door at Davos salivating, not just because of the lost opportunities for a delicious meal, but also for the lost company.”

January 21, 2017 Posted by | Aletho News | , , , , | Leave a comment

CIA Documents Confirm Yom Kippur War Was An Act of Agression By Israel

Penny For Your Thoughts | January 20, 2017

From the CIA document dump earlier this week: Online Now! 12 Million Pages of Declassifed CIA Documents I read all four documents Ynet is claiming demonstrate some imminent danger against Israel.

What is actually written there leaves one with the impression that Israel desired and planned for the war- despite the US asking them, more than once, not to preemptively strike other nations. And clearly reporting that Israel had begun to mobilize troops in advance of their desired war.

Considering all the recent Israeli aggression against Syria present day. The invasion of Lebanon. I find it impossible to believe that Israel was anything but the aggressor in this instance.

Despite the spin put on this news by Ynet.

The very first document Ynet points to:

 Intelligence briefing for Nixon on October 6, 1973 Intelligence briefing for Nixon on October 6, 1973

There is NO information to confirm Israeli reports of an imminent attack-
 “We have no information that would confirm the Israeli reports of an imminent attack”
In fact there is proof of a partial mobilization of Israeli Defense forces already being underway
“He said that a partial mobilization of the Israeli Defense Force is underway”

The second document used by Ynet, again fails to demonstrate an attack is imminent against Israel- It may demonstrate that there was going to be an attack against Syria? If we should assume citizens of the Soviet Union were  actually being evacuated? Which is what this document does. “probably”?

CIA report before the war broke out

 The third document doesn’t confirm imminent attack either?

The US asks Israel to exercise restraint
The US asks Israel to take no preemptive action
The US opposes preemptive action on the part of Israel

Kissinger's conversations on October 6

The fourth document tells us only about Israel’s intelligence.
“I was notified that the Israeli’s have what they consider to be hard information…”
“Urgently communicating with the Israelis, Warning them against any pre emptive attack”
And Egypt expected an Israeli provocation..

 Kissinger's message to Nixon
Reading all those documents for myself, suggests to me that Yom Kippur was a desired war, planned by the Israeli’s against Egypt and Syria.
 Not sure why Ynet is using these to bolster the official narrative?
Ynet :  The morning of the coordinated attack on Israel, US assessments flipped from presuming war was not on the horizon to frantic attempts to prevent Syria and Turkey from attacking the Jewish state, which was warned off any preemptive strike.

 Read the documents and decide for yourself... In all four documents it is clear Israel has prepared for an aggressive move and the US is repeatedly calling for restraint. Warning Israel not to move preemptively. Egypt expecting an Israeli provocation..

Self-defense or provocation: Israel’s history of breaking ceasefires

January 21, 2017 Posted by | Deception, Timeless or most popular, War Crimes, Wars for Israel | , , , , | 8 Comments

British Fingerprints in Dirty Tricks Against Trump

By Finian CUNNINGHAM | Strategic Culture Foundation | 21.01.2017

Britain’s divisive Brexit politics are playing out through the new US presidency of Donald Trump. It seems that a faction within the British political establishment which is opposed to Britain leaving the European Union has joined forces with American intelligence counterparts to hamper Trump’s new administration.

By hampering Trump, the pro-EU British faction would in turn achieve a blow against a possible bilateral trade deal emerging between the US and Britain. Such a bilateral trade deal is vital for post-Brexit Britain to survive outside of the EU. If emerging US-British trade relations were sabotaged by disenfranchising President Trump, then Britain would necessarily have to turn back to rejoining the European Union, which is precisely what a powerful British faction desires.

What unites the anti-Trump forces on both sides of the Atlantic is that they share an atlanticist, pro-NATO worldview, which underpins American hegemony over Europe and Anglo-American-dominated global finance. This atlanticist perspective is vehemently anti-Russian because an independent Russia under President Vladimir Putin is seen as an impediment to the US-led global order of Anglo-American dominance.

The atlanticists in the US and Britain are represented in part by the upper echelons of the intelligence-military apparatus, embodied by the American Central Intelligence Agency and Britain’s Military Intelligence (Section) 6 (MI6).

Notably, incoming US President Donald Trump has expressed indifference towards NATO. This week he repeated comments in which he called the US-led military alliance «obsolete». Trump’s views are no doubt a cause of grave consternation among US-British atlanticists.

It is now emerging that British state intelligence services are involved much more deeply in the dirty tricks operation to smear Trump than might have been appreciated heretofore. The British involvement tends to validate the above atlanticist analysis.

The dirty tricks operation overseen by US intelligence agencies and willing news media outlets appears to be aimed at undermining Trump and, perhaps, even leading to his impeachment.

The former British MI6 agent, named as Christopher Steele, who authored the latest sexual allegations against Trump, was initially reported as working independently for US political parties. However, it now seems that Steele was not acting as an independent consultant to Trump’s political opponents during the US election, as media reports tended to indicate.

Britain’s Independent newspaper has lately reported that Steele’s so-called «Russian dossier» – which claimed that Trump was being blackmailed by the Kremlin over sex orgy tapes – was tacitly given official British endorsement.

That endorsement came in two ways. First, according to the Independent, former British ambassador to Russia, Sir Andrew Woods, reportedly gave assurances to US Senator John McCain that the dossier’s allegations of Russian blackmail against Trump were credible. Woods met with McCain at a security conference in Canada back in November. McCain then passed the allegations on to the American FBI – so «alarmed» was he by the British diplomat’s briefing.

The second way that Britain has endorsed the Russian dossier is the newly appointed head of MI6, Sir Alex Younger, is reported to have used the material produced by his former colleague, Christopher Steele, in preparing his first speech as head of the British intelligence service given in December at the agency’s headquarters in London. That amounts to an imprimatur from MI6 on the Russian dossier.

Thus, in two important signals from senior official British sources, the Russian dossier on Trump was elevated to a serious intelligence document, rather than being seen as cheap gossip.

Excerpts from the document published by US media last week make sensational claims about Trump engaging in orgies with prostitutes in the presidential suite of the Moscow Ritz-Carlton hotel while attending a Miss World contest in 2014. It is claimed that Russian secret services captured the alleged lewd activity on tape and will now be able to leverage this «kompromat» in order to blackmail Trump who becomes inaugurated this week as the 45th president of the United States.

Several informed analysts have dismissed the Russian dossier as an amateurish fake, pointing out its vague hearsay, factual errors and questionable format not typical of standard intelligence work. Also, both Donald Trump and the Kremlin have categorically rejected the claims as far-fetched nonsense.

While most US media did not publish the salacious details of Trump’s alleged trysts, and while they offered riders that the information was «not confirmed» and «unverifiable», nevertheless the gamut of news outlets gave wide coverage to the story which in turn directed public attention to internet versions of the «sensational» claims. So the US mainstream media certainly lent critical amplification, which gave the story a stamp of credibility.

US intelligence agencies, including Director of National Intelligence James Clapper and CIA chief John Brennan, appended the two-page Russian dossier in their separate briefings to outgoing President Barack Obama and President-elect Trump last week. Those briefings were said to mainly focus on US intelligence claims that Russian state-sponsored hackers had carried out cyber attacks to influence the US election last November.

Therefore, US intelligence, their British counterparts and the mass media all played a concerted role to elevate low-grade gossip against Trump into a seemingly credible scandal.

Trump has been waging a war of words with the US intelligence agencies, snubbing them by cutting back on presidential briefings and rubbishing their claims of Russian hacking as «ridiculous». Recently, Trump appeared to shift towards accepting the US intel assessment that Russia had carried out cyber attacks. But he balked at any suggestion that the alleged hacking was a factor in why he won the election against Hillary Clinton.

At a news conference before the weekend, Trump turned up the heat on the US intelligence agencies by blaming them for leaking to the media their briefing to him on the notorious Russian dossier. Trump compared their tactics to that of «Nazi Germany». CIA chief John Brennan couldn’t contain his anger and told media that such a comparison was «outrageous».

Trump may have savaged the Russian blackmail allegations as «fake news». But there are indications that US and British intelligence – and their reliable media mouthpieces – are not giving up on their dirty tricks operation, which has all the hallmarks of a vendetta.

Pointedly, James Clapper, the outgoing US Director of National Intelligence, has said that the secret services have not arrived at a judgment as to whether the Russian blackmail claims are substantive or not. British state-owned BBC has also reported that CIA sources believe that Russian agents have multiple copies of «tapes of a sexual nature» allegedly involving Trump in separate orgies with prostitutes in Moscow and St Petersburg.

In other words this scandal, regardless of veracity, could run and run and run, with the intended effect of undermining Trump and crimping his policies, especially those aimed at normalizing US-Russia relations, as he has vowed to do. If enough scandal is generated, the allegations against Trump being a sexually depraved president compromised by Russian agents – a declared foreign enemy of the US – might even result in his impeachment from the White House on the grounds of treason.

Both the American and British intelligence services appear to be working together, facilitated by aligned news media, to bolster flimsy claims against Trump into allegations of apparent substance. The shadowy «deep state» organs in the US and Britain are doing this because they share a common atlanticist ideology which views Anglo-American dominance over the European Union as the basis for world order. Crucial to this architecture is NATO holding sway over Europe, which in turn relies on demonizing Russia as a «threat to European security».

Clamping down on Trump, either through impeachment or at least corrosive media smears, would serve to further the atlanticist agenda.

For a section of British power – UK-based global corporations and London finance – the prospect of a Brexit from the EU is deeply opposed. The Financial Times list of top UK-based companies were predominantly against leaving the EU ahead of last year’s referendum. Combined with the strategic atlanticist ideology of the military-intelligence apparatus there is a potent British desire to scupper the Trump presidency.

But, as it happens, the American and British picture is complicated by the fact that the British government of Prime Minister Theresa May is very much dependent on cooperation and goodwill from the Trump administration in order for post-Brexit Britain to survive in the world economy outside the EU.

The British government is committed to leaving the EU as determined by the popular referendum last June. To be fair to May’s government, it is deferring to the popular will on this issue. Premier May is even talking about a «hard Brexit» whereby, Britain does not have future access to the European single market. Fervent communications between Downing Street and the Trump transition team show that the British government views new bilateral trade deals with the US as vital for the future of Britain’s economy. And Trump has reciprocated this week by saying that Britain will be given top priority in the signing of new trade deals.

In this way, the British establishment’s divisions over Brexit – some for, some against – are a fortunate break for Trump. Because that will limit how much the British intelligence services can engage in dirty tricks against the president in league with their American counterparts. In short, the atlanticist desire to thwart Trump has lost its power to act malevolently in the aftermath of Britain’s Brexit.

That might also be another reason why Donald Trump has given such a welcoming view on the Brexit – as «a great thing». Perhaps, he knows that it strengthens his political position against deep state opponents who otherwise in a different era might have been strong enough to oust him.

Trump and Brexit potentially mean that the atlanticist sway over Europe is fading. And that’s good news for Russia.

January 21, 2017 Posted by | Deception, Economics, Fake News, Mainstream Media, Warmongering, Militarism | , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment