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How Russophobia wrecked normalization between US & Russia

By Finian Cunningham | RT | January 16, 2018

It’s a glaring contradiction that while US President Donald Trump has repeatedly voiced a desire for restoring friendly relations with Russia, the two countries stand even more frigidly apart than ever.

One year after Trump’s inauguration as the 45th US president, several metrics indicate bilateral ties have actually deteriorated, despite Trump’s oft-stated approval for better relations between Washington and Moscow.

Trump has said US cooperation with Russia should be seen as “an asset, not a liability.” Many people around the world, including within the US, would agree with Trump’s view. So, why the inertia in translating this into practical policy?

Not merely inertia, but in fact the opposite direction. The seizure of Russian diplomatic properties in the US, restrictions on Russian news organizations, and expanding sanctions on Russian business leaders are just some of the issues indicating growing hostility from Washington. Naturally, Russia has responded with its own countermeasures, which in turn exacerbates the antagonism.

The Trump administration’s green-lighting of lethal weapons supply to the Kiev regime in Ukraine regardless of Moscow’s appeals, and the emerging policy of Balkanizing Syria under a continuing American military presence in that country – again in contradiction to Moscow’s concerns – are more evidence of deteriorating relations.

While Trump was elected in November 2016 on a platform that included a reset from the antagonistic policy towards Russia under Democratic President Barack Obama – a policy Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton was also advocating – the upshot has been a continuation of hostility under Trump.

This raises troubling questions about the limits of presidential power to exert avowed policies.

One of the levers of control over the Trump White House has been the relentless “Russiagate scandal.” Trump’s domestic political enemies within the intelligence establishment, Democrat politicians and aligned news media outlets have drowned out public discourse with endless – and baseless – claims that Trump benefited from alleged Russian interference in the presidential election.

Trump has feistily brushed off these claims as “fake news.” Nevertheless, the saturated media insinuations of Trump as a “Kremlin stooge” have inevitably hampered his options for bilateral relations with Russia.

When Trump first met Vladimir Putin at the G20 summit in Hamburg last July, both leaders greeted each other cordially. That caused cynical comments in US media of Trump being “played by Putin.”

They agreed to bring the Syrian war to a rapid close and to work together to implement a negotiated resolution of the Ukraine conflict. But US policy has since become even more menacing in Syria, with the recent announcement that it is forming a 30,000-member Border Security Force (BSF). That development prompted Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov this week to say that he believes Washington is now intending to break up Syrian territorial integrity.

Then when Trump met Putin for a second time at the APEC summit hosted by the Philippines during November, the two presidents’ encounter was strangely crimped from a bilateral meeting to a glancing conversation on the sidelines of the event. News images showed Trump and Putin still enjoyed a cordial relationship. Trump also said then he accepted Putin’s assurances that Russia had not meddled in American domestic politics. Why the constraint then on having a bilateral meeting?

Moreover, a month later, Trump signed off on a new National Security Strategy document in December which explicitly accused Russia of using “subversive tactics” and “interfering in the domestic political affairs of countries around the world.”

The document, which Trump endorsed with his signature, went on to state: “The United States and Europe will work together to counter Russian subversion and aggression.”

Moscow has consistently responded with disdain to all such claims, pointing out the lack of evidence, and that the claims amount to a “frenzy of Russophobia.” Russia has admonished that this is damaging the prospect of restoring relations.

What is lamentable is that even though the Russophobia is at the level of baseless hysteria and wantonly irrational, it has had the palpable effect of negating any attempt to restore US-Russia relations to a more sane footing.

The “Russiagate scandal” can be ridiculed as a contrived drama that keeps running and running. It may be dismissed with contempt as a load of hogwash whipped by Trump’s political enemies within the US foreign policy establishment. But the disturbing thing is that the Russophobia has succeeded in controlling the White House.

Top Russian diplomat Lavrov this week reviewed priority foreign policy issues. They included establishing a peaceful end to the wars in Syria and Ukraine, as well as creating a peaceful settlement to the Korean nuclear crisis.

President Trump, from his brief personal meetings so far with Putin and Lavrov – the latter hosted in the White House – surely appears disposed to work with Moscow in addressing the foreign policy problems in a constructive bilateral manner. That is, in theory.

Regrettably, however, such cooperation between the American and Russian leaders will not be permitted to happen because of the Russiagate specter that has been conjured up over the Trump administration.

Hence, pressing global security concerns that would benefit from US-Russia cooperative dialogue are being jeopardized by the deepening, irrational chill in relations.

The baleful effect of this anti-Russian paranoia was illustrated in an article published last week by the Daily Beast. It was reported that a member of Trump’s National Security Council proposed early in the new presidency last year that the US should scale back its military forces in the Baltic countries.

Russia has long complained that the buildup of US-led NATO forces on its European borders is a provocative threat to its national security.

The idea of repositioning US troops from the Baltic was pitched as a “gesture to the Kremlin that would enable the nascent Trump administration to see its desire for friendly relations with Russia would be reciprocated.”

Apparently, the proposal was quickly rebuffed out of concern about how it would fuel US media claims of Trump being a Russian puppet.

Another idea that was similarly rejected was the lifting of US sanctions on Russia’s economy.

The Daily Beast goes on to make the pejorative editorial comment that the floated proposals “fit a pattern within the Trump administration… of sidling up to Russia. Taken in sum, the pattern raises questions about whether Trump and his team are willing to pay Russia back for the Kremlin’s role in the [presidential] election.”

Note how the article asserts as fact the dubious speculation about Russia interfering in US politics.

Reportedly the proposals for trying to restore relations with Russia have since dried up within Trump’s National Security Council.

Indeed, the NSC official named as the originator of the ideas – Kevin Harrington – is understood to have led the team that produced the hawkish National Security Strategy published at the end of last year.

Thus, from reasonable proposals to engage with Russia floated at the start of Trump’s first year in office, within 12 months the administration has absorbed and adopted the Russophobia narrative.

Anti-Russian group think espoused by US elites has become institutionalized, against the stated views of the president and the American electorate. Where’s the democracy in that?


Senate probe expanded to anyone ‘of Russian descent or nationality’ – email

January 16, 2018 Posted by | Militarism, Russophobia, Timeless or most popular | , | Leave a comment

New US Nuclear Posture Review to Bury Arms Control

By Alex GORKA | Strategic Culture Foundation | 16.01.2018

The 2018 Nuclear Posture Review (NPR) will be released soon. No significant changes should be expected, as there is little time left until it is officially made public. This is a document of great importance. It is coming out just as arms control is on the verge of disintegration. The draft review was published by HuffPost.

America is planning to upgrade its entire nuclear arsenal. It will replace warheads and modernize its command-and-control systems in order to stay at the “head of the pack.” The potential nuclear scenarios include responding to a “significant non-nuclear strategic attack” that would result in large-scale casualties or target key components of US infrastructure. For comparison, the 2010 review stated that nuclear weapons could be used in “extreme circumstances to defend the vital interests of the United States or its allies and partners.” No nuclear arms can be used against non-nuclear countries that comply with their non-proliferation obligations. And with only a little stretch of the imagination a “significant non-nuclear strategic attack” could mean anything. Many scenarios might fall into this category. As one can see, the first-use constraints are going to be relaxed. The 2010 review also opted not to develop new warheads. It did not anticipate any new missions or capabilities. In a major policy shift, the new draft document does away with these restrictions.

The 2018 draft review includes a low-yield warhead developed especially for sea-based strategic nuclear missiles. The warhead will include the trigger. The thermonuclear part of the two-stage warhead will be removed. The idea is that submarine-based weapons will serve as the means to “deter” Russia in Europe.

Actually, the plan has been under consideration for some time. Those who follow the latest developments on this topic remember the statement made by Air Force Gen. Paul Selva, the Vice Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, last August. The official praised the idea of incorporating low-yield warheads into the designs of strategic missiles.

Does the United States really need new weapons to deter Russia, a program that will require  a lot of money, time, and effort? What about the low-yield nuclear weapons already in its inventory, such as tactical bombs and air-launched cruise missiles? Are they not enough?

Actually, the only advantage of an SLBM-launched low-yield warhead is its ability to penetrate Russia’s S-400 and S-300V4 theater air-defense systems. They can intercept targets moving at 4,800 or 4,500 meters per second or intermediate-range missiles launched from a distance of about 2,500–3,500 kilometers. But the systems cannot hit a Trident SLBM until Russia’s S-500 air-defense system is operational.

Low-yield warheads will be seen as more usable, lowering the nuclear threshold. The idea of producing new Trident warheads has made headlines, but there is another element to the 2018 review that is even more detrimental for arms control and global stability.

Retired from service in 2013, the Tomahawk TLAM-N, intermediate-range, nuclear-tipped, sea-based cruise missile with variable yield warheads (5 to 150 kt), designed to strike ground targets from a distance of 2,500 km, is to be brought back. Its W80 nuclear warhead is to be upgraded and installed on new LRSO missiles that will be developed sometime after 2025.

The return of the TLAM-N is a highly provocative act. It requires little time to reinstall  these weapons on ships and submarines. There is no way for Russia to know if a shipborne missile is nuclear-tipped or not. The possibility of a retaliatory nuclear strike will greatly increase. The return of the TLAM-N will mean the end of the Presidential Nuclear Initiatives (PNIs). Those executive orders made it possible to achieve a spectacular breakthrough without binding documents. In 1991, the leaders of the US and the Soviet Union made reciprocal unilateral pledges to significantly limit and reduce their tactical nuclear arms. All non-strategic nuclear weapons were removed from surface ships and multipurpose submarines and the sea has been free of them ever since. Now the US is going to make the PNIs a thing of the past and abruptly extend the arms race into this new domain.

A US ship launching a TLAM-N from the BalticMediterraneanor Black Seas becomes a strategic weapon aimed at Russia. It makes no difference if a nuclear strike is delivered by an ICBM or a shipborne long-range cruise missile. Russia will respond, putting nuclear warheads on Kalibr sea-based cruise missiles and sending guided missile ships and submarines to patrol North American waters, ready for a retaliatory strike. The idea of resurrecting TLAM-N missiles undermines the entire arms-control regime. Sea-launched weapons cannot be regulated. There is no way to verify whether shipborne cruise missiles are nuclear or not. With the TLAM-N back in service, all the work to control nuclear arms will go down the drain. That’s where the real threat to global stability is coming from.

January 16, 2018 Posted by | Militarism, Timeless or most popular | , | Leave a comment

In words and deeds: the genesis of Israeli violence

By Ramzy Baroud | MEMO | January 16, 2018

Not a day passes without a prominent Israeli politician or intellectual making an outrageous statement against Palestinians. Many of these statements tend to garner little attention or evoke rightly deserved outrage.

Just recently, Israel’s Minister of Agriculture, Uri Ariel, called for more death and injuries on Palestinians in Gaza.

“What is this special weapon we have that we fire and see pillars of smoke and fire, but nobody gets hurt? It is time for there to be injuries and deaths as well,” he said.

Ariel’s calling for the killing of more Palestinians came on the heels of other repugnant statements concerning a 16-year-old teenager girl, Ahed Tamimi. Ahed was arrested in a violent Israeli army raid at her home in the West Bank village of Nabi Saleh.

A video recording showed her slapping an Israeli soldier a day after the Israeli army shot her cousin in the head, placing him in a coma.

Israeli Education Minister, Naftali Bennett, known for his extremist political views, demanded that Ahed and other Palestinian girls should “spend the rest of their days in prison”.

A prominent Israeli journalist, Ben Caspit, sought yet more punishment. He suggested that Ahed and girls like her should be raped in jail.

“In the case of the girls, we should exact a price at some other opportunity, in the dark, without witnesses and cameras”, he wrote in Hebrew.

This violent and revolting mindset, however, is not new. It is an extension of an old, entrenched belief system that is predicated on a long history of violence.

Undeniably, the views of Ariel, Bennett and Caspit are not angry statements uttered in a moment of rage. They are all reflections of real policies that have been carried out for over 70 years. Indeed, killing, raping and imprisoning for life are features that have accompanied the state of Israel since the very beginning.

This violent legacy continues to define Israel to this day, through the use of what Israeli historian Ilan Pappe describes as ‘incremental genocide.’

Throughout this long legacy, little has changed except for names and titles. The Zionist militias that orchestrated the genocide of the Palestinians prior to the establishment of Israel in 1948 merged together to form the Israeli army; and the leaders of these groups became Israel’s leaders.

Israel’s violent birth in 1947- 48 was the culmination of the violent discourse that preceded it for many years. It was the time when Zionist teachings of prior years were put into practice and the outcome was simply horrifying.

“The tactic of isolating and attacking a certain village or town and executing its population in a horrible, indiscriminate massacre was a strategy employed, time and again, by Zionist bands to compel the population of surrounding villages and towns to flee,” Ahmad Al-Haaj told me when I asked him to reflect on Israel’s past and present.

Al-Haaj is a Palestinian historian and an expert on the Nakba, the ‘Catastrophe’ that had befallen Palestinians in 1948.

The 85-year-old intellectual’s proficiency in the subject began 70 years ago, when, as a 15-year-old, he witnessed the massacre of Beit Daras at the hands of Jewish Haganah militia.

The destruction of the southern Palestinian village and the killing of dozens of its inhabitants resulted in the depopulation of many adjacent villages, including al-Sawafir, Al-Haaj’s home village.

“The notorious Deir Yasin massacre was the first example of such wanton killing, a model that was duplicated in other parts of Palestine,” Al-Haaj said.

The ethnic cleansing of Palestine at the time was orchestrated by several Zionist militias. The mainstream Jewish militia was the Haganah which belonged to the Jewish Agency.

The latter functioned as a semi-government, under the auspices of the British Mandate Government, while the Haganah served as its army.

However, other breakaway groups also operated according to their own agenda. Two leading bands amongst them were the Irgun (National Military Organization) and Lehi (also known as the Stern Gang). These groups carried out numerous terrorist attacks, including bus bombings and targeted assassinations.

Russian-born Menachem Begin was the leader of the Irgun which, along with the Stern Gang and other Jewish militants, massacred hundreds of civilians in Deir Yassin.

‘Tell the soldiers: you have made history in Israel with your attack and your conquest. Continue this until victory. As in Deir Yassin, so everywhere, we will attack and smite the enemy. God, God, Thou has chosen us for conquest,” Begin wrote at the time. He described the massacre as a “splendid act of conquest.”

The intrinsic link between words and actions remain unchanged.

Nearly 30 years later, a once wanted terrorist, Begin became Prime Minister of Israel. He accelerated land theft of the newly-occupied West Bank and East Jerusalem, launched a war on Lebanon, annexed Occupied Jerusalem to Israel and carried out the massacre of Sabra and Shatilla in 1982.

Some of the other terrorists-turned-politicians and top army brass include Begin, Moshe Dayan, Yitzhak Rabin, Ariel Sharon, Rafael Eitan and Yitzhak Shamir. Each one of these leaders has a record dotted with violence.

Shamir served as the Prime Minister of Israel from 1986 – 1992. In 1941, Shamir was imprisoned by the British for his role in the Stern Gang. Later, as Prime Minister, he ordered a violent crackdown against a mostly non-violent Palestinian uprising in 1987, purposely breaking the limbs of kids accused of throwing rocks at Israeli soldiers.

So, when government ministers like Ariel and Bennett call for wanton violence against Palestinians, they are simply carrying on with a bloody legacy that has defined every single Israeli leader in the past. It is the violent mindset that continues to control the Israeli government and its relationship with Palestinians; in fact, with all of its neighbours.


January 16, 2018 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Timeless or most popular, War Crimes | , , , | 1 Comment

Palestinian Leadership Decides to Suspend Recognition of and Cooperation with Israel

IMEMC News – January 16, 2018

The second-highest decision-making body of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) decided Monday to call on the executive committee to suspend recognition of Israel until Israel recognizes the existence of Palestine, and annuls its annexation of Jerusalem, marking the latest fallout from Donald Trump’s December 6th claim of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.

The PLO will cease all security cooperation with Israel, and will cease the cooperation of the Paris Agreement, which had tied the Palestinian economy to the Israeli economy.

The statement from the Central Council said, in part, “Since Israel has voided all signed agreements through its constant violations of these agreements, the Central Council affirms that the direct goal is an independent Palestinian state, which involves moving from self-rule to having a state, by achieving sovereignty of the state of Palestine, with East Jerusalem as its capital.”

The Council called on the international community to work on ending the Israeli occupation, using all of the past UN Security Council and General Assembly resolutions, to achieve Palestinian sovereignty and an independent Palestinian state.

They called on countries to boycott Israeli settlement products, and to publish the database which includes the list of companies which bring products from the settlements.

The Council called for adopting the Boycott-Divestment-Sanctions (BDS) call, denouncing Israeli apartheid as a racist regime that is being imposed in place of a Palestinian state, rejecting any temporary solutions – especially regarding borders, rejecting any recognition of Israel as a Jewish state (which implies the denial of the existence and rights of the millions of non-Jews who live there), affirming the unity agreement signed in 2011 between the Palestinian factions, and affirmed again in 2017, and assuring a political partnership under the PLO as the only representative of the Palestinian people.

The Council affirmed the legitimate right of resistance to the occupation, as stated by international law, and called for support of the non-violent resistance movement in Palestine.

They also affirmed the urgent need to assist the Palestinians in Jerusalem, the eternal capital of Palestine, who are facing expulsion, home demolitions, and constant violations by Israel. They called on all Arab countries to follow through on their commitments of support to the Palestinian people.

The Council decided to take all needed measures to assist the Palestinians living in the besieged Gaza Strip.

They decided to continue the work on the international level to provide protection for the Palestinian people, as stated in Security Council Resolution 605 in 1987, 672 and 673 in 1990, Resolution 904 of 1998, and to ensure the implementation of the Fourth Geneva Convention of 1949, which calls for protecting civilians living under foreign military occupation.

They decided to continue the international work to call for full membership at the United Nations for the state of Palestine.

The Council also decided to submit the cases of settlements, political prisoners, and the Israeli wars on Gaza to the International Criminal Court, and they also decided to continue filing more applications to international organizations and agencies.

Unofficial translation of the statement (by WAFA ):

Statement issued by the Central Council of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO)

January 14, 2018

Ramallah, Palestine

The Palestine Liberation Organization’s Central Council held its twenty-eighth ordinary session, under the name “Jerusalem the eternal capital of the State of Palestine”, between January 14 – 15 2018 in the city of Ramallah, in the presence of President Mahmoud Abbas.

A total of 87 members out of 109 members attended the session, while a number of members were unable to attend because they were arrested or prevented by Israel.

President of the Central council Salim Al-Za’noun began the session by saying that “The time has come for our Palestinian Central Council, that is representing the Palestinian National Council, which took the decision to establish the Palestinian National Authority to be the core of the state, to decide its future and function and to reconsider the recognition of the State of Israel until it recognizes the State of Palestine with Jerusalem as its capital and accept the refugees’ return based on resolution 194.”

Al-Za’noun stressed that the Central Council rejects any ideas that are being circulated as part of the so-called “deal of the century”, because they violate international law and resolutions of the international community and seek to impose a deficient solution that does not meet the minimum of Palestinians’ legitimate rights.

He called for finding other international pathways under the auspices of the United Nations to sponsor solving the Palestinian cause.

He said, “Our success in facing these risks and challenges requires accelerating the steps of implementing reconciliation and ending the division, and developing a plan to strengthen national partnership within the framework of the PLO, as the supreme national political and legal reference for our people.”

Al-Za’noun proposed to hold a session of the National Council, in which both Hamas and the Islamic Jihad will be invited with the task of reshaping, choosing or electing a new national council, as stipulated by the system of elections of the National Council.

“We respect and appreciate the position of Arabs and their support for the Palestinian cause. We demand the implementation of the decisions of the Arab summits on Jerusalem, especially the Amman summit of 1980, which called for severing all relations with any state that recognizes Jerusalem as the capital of Israel or transfers its embassy to it.”

He stressed that the sacrifices and struggles of prisoners in Israeli jails obligate Palestinians to provide all forms of support and that the dignity of Palestinians remains above any consideration.

Meanwhile, President Abbas reiterated commitment to a two-state solution based on international resolutions, the Arab peace initiative on the 1967 borders, the cessation of settlements’ expansion and unilateral actions. He affirmed that Palestinians will continue to seek the Security Council until full membership is achieved.

He stressed that Palestinians will not accept what the US attempts to impose, and that the PLO will reconsider its relations with Israel, yet engage in any serious peace negotiations under the auspices of the UN.

Following are the resolutions issued by the Central Council:

First: US recognition of Jerusalem

1. To condemn and reject the decision of US President Donald Trump, recognizing Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, and transferring his country’s embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, and work to reverse this decision.

2. The Council considered that the US administration, by announcing this decision, has lost its eligibility to function as a mediator and sponsor of the peace process and will not be a partner in this process unless the decision is reversed.

3. The Council stressed its rejection of President Trump’s policy that is aimed at presenting a project or ideas that contravene the resolutions of international community to resolve the conflict, which revealed its essence by declaring Jerusalem as the capital of Israel. The Council stressed the need to abolish the Congress’s decision to consider the PLO as a terrorist organization since 1987, and the State Department’s decision to close the Office of the PLO general delegation in Washington on November 17, 2017.

Second: The relationship with Israel (the occupation):

In light of the withdrawal of the occupying state from all agreements and revoking them by practice and imposing a fait accompli, and with the Central council stressing that the direct goal is the independence of the State of Palestine, which requires transition from self-governing to the stage of a state that is struggling for independence, with East Jerusalem as its capital and on the borders of 4 June 1967, in implementation of the resolutions of the National Council, including the Declaration of Independence in 1988, and relevant UN resolutions, including the General Assembly resolution 67/19 of 29/11/2012, as the political and legal basis for Palestinians reality, and the affirmation of adherence to the territorial unity of the State of Palestine, and the rejection of any divisions or facts imposed contrary to that;

The Central Council decided that the transitional period stipulated in the agreements signed in Oslo, Cairo and Washington, with its obligations no longer stand.

1.The Central Council calls upon the international community to assume its responsibilities on the basis of relevant UN resolutions to end the occupation and enable the State of Palestine to achieve its independence and to exercise its full sovereignty over its territory, including its capital, East Jerusalem, on the borders of 4 June 1967.

2.Assign the Executive Committee of the Palestine Liberation Organization to suspend recognition of Israel until it recognizes the State of Palestine on the 1967 borders and revokes the decision to annex East Jerusalem and expand and build settlements.

3.The Central Council reaffirms its decision to stop security coordination in all its forms and to break away from the relationship of economic dependence established by the Paris Economic Agreement, to achieve the independence of the national economy. It requests the Executive Committee of the PLO and the institutions of the State of Palestine to start implementing this.

4.Continue to work with world countries to boycott Israeli colonial settlements in all fields, to work on publishing the database for companies operating in Israeli settlements by the United Nations and to emphasize the illegality of Israeli colonial settlements since 1967.

5.Adopt the BDS movement and call on world countries to impose sanctions on Israel to put an end to its flagrant violations of international law and to end its continued aggression against the Palestinian people and the apartheid regime imposed on them.

6.Reject and condemn the Israeli occupation and apartheid that Israel is trying to enshrine as an alternative to the establishment of an independent Palestinian state, and affirm the determination of the Palestinian people to resist by all means.

7.Reject any proposals or ideas for transitional solutions or interim stages, including the so-called state with temporary borders.

8.Refuse to recognize Israel as a Jewish state.

Third: The internal Palestinian situation:

1.Adhere to the reconciliation Agreement signed in 2017 and its execution mechanisms, the latest of which is the Cairo agreement in 2017 and the provision of means of support for its implementation, and enable the Government of National unity to assume its responsibilities fully in the Gaza Strip in accordance with the Amended Basic Law, and then conduct general elections and hold the Palestinian National Council session no later than the end of 2018 in order to achieve political partnership within the framework of the PLO, the legitimate and sole representative of the Palestinian people, and work to form a government of national unity in order to strengthen the political partnership and the unity of the Palestinian political system.

2.Affirm the right of our people to exercise all forms of resistance against the occupation in accordance with the provisions of international law and to continue to activate, support and strengthen the peaceful popular resistance.

3.Affirm the need to support Palestinians and their steadfastness in the eternal capital of the State of Palestine, Jerusalem and affirm the need to support their struggle against the Israeli measures aimed at Judaizing the Holy City.

4.Take all measures to support our people in the Gaza Strip, who faced the Israeli aggression and the Israeli siege and provide the support they need, including freedom of movement, access to health, the reconstruction and the mobilization of the international community to break the siege.

5.The Central Council condemns the leaking of the property by the Greek Orthodox church to Israeli institutions and companies and calls for accountability of those responsible. It supports the struggle of the Palestinian people from the Orthodox community in order to preserve their rights and their role in administering the affairs of the Orthodox Church and preserving its property.

Fourth: The Security Council, the General Assembly and the International Criminal Court:

1.Continue to work to provide international protection to the Palestinian people in the territory of the occupied State of Palestine (West Bank, including East Jerusalem and the Gaza Strip) based on the Security Council resolution 605 for the year (1987), 672 (1967) and (1990), 904 of (1998), and the Fourth Geneva Convention of 1949 (Protection of Civilians in Time of War).

2.Continue to work to strengthen the status of the State of Palestine in international forums and activate the request for full membership of the State of Palestine in the United Nations.

3.Provide referral on various issues (settlement, prisoners, aggression on the Gaza Strip) to the International Criminal Court.

4.Continue to join to international institutions and organizations, including the specialized agencies of the United Nations.

Fifth: The Arab and Islamic levels:

1.Call for activating the resolution of the 1980 Amman Summit, which obliges the Arab states to sever all ties with any state that recognizes Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and transfers its embassy to it, which has been reaffirmed in a number of other Arab summits with the request of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation member states to do the same.

2.Adhere to the Arab peace initiative and reject any attempts to change or alter it and maintain its priorities.

3.Work with the Arab countries (The Arab League), the Islamic countries (OIC) and the Non-Aligned Movement to hold an international conference with full powers to launch the peace process and in coordination with the EU countries, Russia, China, Japan and other international groups on the basis of relevant international resolutions and benefit from the outcomes of the 2017 Paris conference in a way as to ensure the end of the Israeli occupation and the empowerment of the State of Palestine with East Jerusalem as its capital on the 1967 borders and exercise its independence and sovereignty and to resolve the refugee issue on the basis of UN Resolution 194 and other final status issues in accordance with the resolutions of the international community within a specific time frame.

4.The League of Arab States, the OIC, the Non-Aligned Movement and the African Union must stand firm in front of world countries that violated the resolutions of these collective frameworks on voting against the United Nations General Assembly resolution on Jerusalem 21/12/2017.

5.The Central council condemned US threats to cut aid to UNRWA, which is seen as a way for the US to abandon its responsibility over a refugee crisis that it has aided in creating and calls on the international community to commit itself to securing the necessary funds for UNRWA, which would put an end to the continued decline in the Agency’s services and instead improve its role in providing basic services to the victims of the Nakbah and ensure a decent life for refugees as a responsibility that the international community should fulfill in accordance with resolution 194.

6.The Central Council rejects foreign intervention in Arab countries and calls for a political solution and dialogue in order to end the crises and wars experienced by some Arab countries. It calls for maintaining the unity of these countries and defying attempts to divide and alleviating the suffering of Arabs.

Sixth: Develop mechanisms to implement the decisions of the previous Central Council to represent women by at least 30% in all institutions in the State of Palestine and to harmonize the laws in accordance with the Convention on the Elimination of all Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW).

Seventh: The Central Council salutes the masses of Palestinians in refugee camps and exile camps in Syria, Lebanon and the Diaspora who affirm their adherence to the right of return every day. The Executive Committee is mandated to continue and intensify work with the Palestinian communities in the world and to communicate with international parties to mobilize support in facing decisions that aim to liquidate the Palestinian cause.

Eighth: The Central Council salutes the struggle and steadfastness of the prisoners in the Israeli jails and calls for their support in their daily confrontation and calls on national and international institutions to bring up their cases in all forums until their release. The Council condemns the arrest and intimidation of children, including Ahed Tamimi, which has become a symbol of Palestinian pride in the face of occupation as well as dozens of other children.

It condemns the deliberate killings and field executions committed by Israel, as well as the killing of Ibrahim Abu Thuraya, and condemns the continued detention of the bodies of Palestinians in the numbers graves, and calls for their unconditional release.

Ninth: The Central Council salutes Palestinians for their response to President Trump’s decision to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and transfer the US Embassy to it. It salutes the souls of Palestinians who rose for Palestine and al-Aqsa.

January 16, 2018 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Illegal Occupation, Timeless or most popular | , , , , | 1 Comment

We Need a Martin Luther King Day of Truth

By Edward Curtin | January 15, 2018

As Martin Luther King’s birthday is celebrated with a national holiday, his death day disappears down the memory hole. Across the country – in response to the King Holiday and Service Act passed by Congress and signed by Bill Clinton in 1994 – people will be encouraged to make the day one of service. Such service does not include King’s commitment to protest a decadent system of racial and economic injustice or non-violently resist the U.S. warfare state that he called “the greatest purveyor of violence on earth.”

Government sponsored service is cultural neo-liberalism at its finest, the promotion of individualism at the expense of a mass movement for radical institutional change.

“Nothing in all the world is more dangerous,” warned Dr. King, “than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity.”

How true those words. For the government that honors Dr. King with a national holiday killed him. This is the suppressed truth behind the highly promoted day of service. It is what you are not supposed to know.

The word service is a loaded word, a smiley face word. It has also become a vogue word over the past 35 years. Its use for MLK Day is clear: individuals are encouraged to volunteer for activities such as tutoring children, painting senior centers, or delivering meals to the elderly, activities that are good in themselves but far less good when used to conceal an American prophet’s radical message. After all, Martin Luther King’s work was not volunteering at the local food pantry with Oprah Winfrey cheering him on.

The Assassination

King was not murdered because he had spent his heroic life promoting individual volunteerism. To understand his life and death – to celebrate the man – “it is essential to realize although he is popularly depicted and perceived as a civil rights leader, he was much more than that. A non-violent revolutionary, he personified the most powerful force for a long overdue social, political, and economic reconstruction of the nation.” Those are the words of William Pepper, the King family lawyer, from his comprehensive and definitive study of the King assassination, The Plot to Kill King, a book that should be read by anyone concerned with truth and justice.

Revolutionaries are, of course, anathema to the power elites who, with all their might, resist such rebels’ efforts to transform society. If they can’t buy them off, they knock them off. Fifty years after King’s assassination, the causes he fought for – civil rights, the end to U.S. wars of aggression, and economic justice for all – remain not only unfulfilled, but have worsened in so many respects. And King’s message has been enervated by the sly trick of giving him a national holiday and then urging Americans to make it “a day of service.” The vast majority of those who innocently participate in these activities have no idea who killed King, or why. If they did, they might pause in their tracks, and combine their “service” activities with a teach-in on the truth of these matters.

Because MLK repeatedly called the United States the “greatest purveyor of violence on earth,” he was universally condemned by the mass media and government that later – once he was long and safely dead and no longer a threat – praised him to the heavens. This has continued to the present day of historical amnesia.

Educating people about the fact that U.S. government forces conspired to kill Dr. King, and why, and why it matters today, is the greatest service we can render to his memory.

William Pepper’s decades-long investigation not only refutes the flimsy case against the alleged assassin James Earl Ray, but definitively proves that King was killed by a government conspiracy led by J. Edgar Hoover, the FBI, Army Intelligence, and the Memphis Police, assisted by southern Mafia figures.

The Trial

This shocking truth is accentuated when one is reminded (or told for the first time) that in 1999 a Memphis jury, after a thirty day civil trial with over seventy witnesses, found the U.S. government guilty in the killing of MLK. The King family had brought the suit and Pepper represented them. They were grateful that the truth was confirmed, but saddened by the way the findings were buried by the media in cahoots with the government.

Pepper not only demolishes the government’s self-serving case with a plethora of evidence, but shows how the mainstream media, academia, and government flacks have spent years covering up the truth of MLK’s murder through lies and disinformation. Another way they have accomplished this is by convincing a gullible public that “service” is a substitute for truth.

But service without truth is a disservice to the life, legacy, and radical witness of this great American hero. It is propaganda aimed at convincing decent people that they are serving the essence of MLK’s message while they are obeying their masters, the very government that murdered him.

It is time to rebel against the mind manipulation served by the MLK Day of Service. Let us offer service, but let us also learn and tell the truth.

“He who lives with untruth lives in spiritual slavery,” King told us, “Freedom is still the bonus we receive for knowing the truth.”

January 16, 2018 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Deception, Mainstream Media, Warmongering, Timeless or most popular | , , | Leave a comment

Monbiot Is a Hypocrite and a Bully

By Jonathan Cook | Dissident Voice | January 15, 2018

It is time for George Monbiot’s legion of supporters to call him out. Not only is he a hypocrite, but he is becoming an increasingly dangerous one.

Turning a blind eye to his behaviour, or worse excusing it, as too often happens, has only encouraged him to intensify his attacks on dissident writers, those who – whether right or wrong on any specific issue – are slowly helping us all to develop more critical perspectives on western foreign policy goals than has ever been possible before.

I do not lightly use such strong language against Monbiot, someone I once admired. But his column this week drips with hypocrisy as he accuses the right wing media of being the real villains when it comes to “no-platforming”. Monbiot writes:

But perhaps the real discomfort is that the worst no-platforming of all takes place within our newspapers. In the publications most obsessed with student silliness, there is no platform for socialism, no platform for environmentalism, no platform for those who might offend the interests of the proprietors. …

I believe that a healthy media organisation, like a healthy university, should admit a diversity of opinion. I want the other newspapers to keep publishing views with which I fiercely disagree. But they – and we – should also seek opposing views and publish them too, however uncomfortable this might be.

What free speech advocate would disagree with that? Except it is Monbiot himself who has been using his prominent platforms, at the Guardian and on social media, to discredit critical thinkers on the left – not with reasoned arguments, but by impugning their integrity.

Denied a platform

It started with his unsubstantiated claim that scholars like Noam Chomsky and the late Ed Herman, as well as the acclaimed journalist John Pilger, were “genocide deniers and belittlers”. It now focuses on childish insinuations that those who question the corporate media’s simplistic narrative on Syria are Assad apologists or in Vladimir Putin’s pay.

But worse than this, Monbiot is also conspiring – either actively or through his silence – to deny critics of his and the Guardian’s position on Syria the chance to set out their evidence in its pages.

The Guardian’s anti-democratic stance does not surprise me, as someone who worked there for many years. I found myself repeatedly no-platformed by the paper – even while on its staff – after I started taking an interest in the Israel-Palestine conflict and writing about the discomforting issue of what a Jewish state entails. My treatment is far from unique.

Now the paper is denying a platform to those who question simplistic and self-serving western narratives on Syria. And Monbiot is backing his employer to the hilt, even as he professes his commitment to the publication of views he fiercely disagrees with. That’s the dictionary definition of hypocrisy.

‘Selfless’ White Helmets?

The latest installment of the Guardian and Monbiot’s long-running battle to silence Syria dissidents arrived last month when Olivia Solon, the paper’s technology writer living in San Francisco, developed a sudden and unexpected expertise in a controversial Syrian group called the White Helmets.

In the western corporate media narrative, the White Helmets are a group of dedicated and selfless rescue workers. They are supposedly the humanitarians on whose behalf a western intervention in Syria would have been justified – before, that is, Syrian leader Bashar Assad queered their pitch by inviting in Russia.

However, there are problems with the White Helmets. They operate only in rebel – read: mainly al-Qaeda and ISIS-held – areas of Syria, and plenty of evidence shows that they are funded by the UK and US to advance both countries’ far-from-humanitarian policy objectives in Syria.

There are also strong indications that members of the White Helmets have been involved in war crimes, and that they have staged rescue operations as a part of a propaganda offensive designed to assist Islamic extremists trying to oust Assad. (Solon discounts this last claim. In doing so, she ignores several examples of such behaviour, concentrating instead on an improbable “mannequin challenge”, when the White Helmets supposedly froze their emergency operations, in the midst of rescue efforts, apparently as part of a peculiar publicity campaign.)

Guardian hatchet job

Whatever side one takes in this debate, one would imagine that Monbiot should have a clear agenda in support of hearing evidence from all sides. One might also imagine that he would want to distance himself from Solon’s efforts to tie criticism of the White Helmets to a supposed “fake news” crisis and paint those critical of the group as Putin-bots. According to Solon:

The way the Russian propaganda machine has targeted the White Helmets is a neat case study in the prevailing information wars. It exposes just how rumours, conspiracy theories and half-truths bubble to the top of YouTube, Google and Twitter search algorithms.

Those are the same algorithms that have been changed in recent months to make sure that prominent leftist websites are increasingly difficult to find on internet searches and their writers’ views effectively disappeared.

Yet Monbiot has been using social media to promote Solon’s cheerleading of the White Helmets and her hatchet job against on-the-ground journalists who have taken a far more critical view of the group.

As set out by Prof Tim Hayward, the Guardian’s response to criticism of Solon’s piece has been typical. The comments section below the article was hastily closed after many criticisms were voiced by readers. The journalists who were singled out for attack by Solon were denied a right of reply. A group of concerned academics led by Hayward who submitted their own article, which detailed publicly available evidence to counter Solon’s simplistic account of the White Helmets, were ignored. Meanwhile, the Guardian’s editors and the reader’s editor have ignored all efforts by these parties to contact them.

Given his claim to be an uncompromising defender of free speech and a fierce advocate of providing platforms to those who can back up their arguments with evidence, however discomforting, one might have assumed that Monbiot would at the very least have lobbied on behalf of Hayward and his fellow scholars. But not a bit of it. Yet again he has joined the dogs of the corporate media baying for blood. Instead he turned to Twitter to claim Hayward and Piers Robinson, an expert on propaganda, had “disgraced” themselves.

Undermining climate concerns

The many tens of thousands of leftists who defend Monbiot, or turn a blind eye to his hypocrisy, largely do so because of his record on the environment. But in practice they are enabling not only his increasingly overt incitement against critical thinkers, but also undermining the very cause his supporters believe he champions.

Climate breakdown is a global concern. Rewilding, bike-riding, protecting bees and polar bears, and developing new sustainable technologies are all vitally important. But such actions will amount to little if we fail to turn a highly sceptical eye on the activities of a western military-industrial complex ravaging the planet’s poorest regions.

These war industries fill their coffers by using weapons indiscriminately on “enemy” populations, spawning new and fiercer enemies – while often propping them up too – to generate endless wars. The consequences include massive displacements of these populations who then destabilise other regions, spreading the effect and creating new opportunities for the arms manufacturers, homeland security industries, and the financial industries that feed off them.

A true environmentalist has to look as critically at western policies in Iraq, Libya, Syria, Ukraine, Venezuela and many other areas of the globe as he does at UK policy in the Welsh hills and the Lake District.

All indications are that Monbiot lacks the experience, knowledge and skills to unravel the deceptions being perpetrated in the west’s proxy and not-so-proxy wars overseas. That is fair enough. What is not reasonable is that he should use his platforms to smear precisely those who can speak with a degree of authority and independence – and then conspire in denying them a platform to respond. That is the behaviour not only of a hypocrite, but of a bully too.

January 16, 2018 Posted by | Deception, Environmentalism, Mainstream Media, Warmongering, Progressive Hypocrite | , , , , , | 1 Comment

Amnesty International Is Barking Up The Wrong Tree

By Paul Craig Roberts | Institute for Political Economy | January 15, 2108

I have received a letter from Margaret Huang, Amnesty International’s executive director. She is fundraising on the basis of President Trump’s “chilling disregard for our cherished human rights” and his exploitation of “hatred, misogyny, racism and xenophobia,” by which he has “emboldened and empowered the most violent segments of our society.”

Considering the hostility of Identity Politics toward Trump, one can understand why Ms. Huang frames her fundraiser in this way, but are the Trump deplorables the most empowered and violent segments of our society or is it the security agencies, the police, the neoconservatives, the presstitute media, and the Republican and Democratic parties?

John Kiriakou, Ray McGovern, Philip Giraldi, Edward Snowden, and others inform us that it is their former employers, the security agencies, that are empowered by unaccountability and violent by intent. Certainly the security agencies are emboldened by everything they have gotten away with, including their conspiracy to destroy President Trump with their orchestration known as Russiagate.

The violence that the US government has committed against humanity since the Clinton regime attacked Serbia was not committed by Trump deplorables. The violence that has destroyed in whole or part eight countries, murdering, maiming, and displacing millions of peoples, was committed by the Clinton, George W. Bush, and Obama regimes, their secretaries of state such as Hillary Clinton, their national security advisers, their military and security establishments, both parties in Congress. The murder of entire countries was endorsed by the presstitute media and the heads of state of Washington’s European, Canadian, Australian, and Japanese vassals. Trump and his deplorables have a long way to go to match this record of violence.

Whether she understands it or not, Ms. Huang with her letter is shifting the violence from where it belongs to where it does not. The consequence will be to increase violence and human rights violations.

The most dangerous source of violence that we face is nuclear Armageddon resulting from the neoconservative quest for US hegemony. Since the Clinton regime every US government has broken tension-easing agreements that previous administrations had achieved with Moscow. During the Obama regime the gratuitous aggressions and false accusations against Russia became extreme.

Why doesn’t Amnesty International address the reckless and irresponsible acts of the US government that are violating the rights of people in numerous countries and pushing the world into nuclear war? Instead, there have been times when Amnesty International aligns with Washington’s propaganda against Washington’s victims.

By jumping on the military/security complex’s get Trump movement, human rights and environmental organizations have increased the likelihood that rights and environment will be lost to war.

There can be no doubt that Trump is undoing past environmental protections and opening the environment and wildlife to more destruction. However, the worst destruction comes from war, especially nuclear war.

Would things be different if the liberal/progressive/left had rallied to Trump’s support in reducing tensions with Russia, in normalizing the hostile relations that Obama had established with Moscow? Would the support of the liberal/progressive/left have helped Trump resist the pressures from the neoconservative warmongers? In exchange for support for his principal goal, would Trump have mitigated industry’s attacks on the environment and vetoed the renewal of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act that violates human rights?

We will never know, because the liberal/progressive/left could not see beyond the end ot its nose to comprehend what it means for the environment and for human rights for nuclear powers to be locked into mutual suspicion.

Thanks to the failure of the liberal/progressive/left and to the presstitute media to understand the stakes, the military/security complex has been successful in pushing Trump off his agenda. The damage that a mining company and offshore drilling can do to the environment is large, but it pales in comparison to the damage from nuclear weapons.

January 16, 2018 Posted by | Environmentalism, Militarism, Timeless or most popular | , , | 1 Comment

Big Guns, Better Chow, and More US-NATO Aggression

By Brian CLOUGHLEY | Strategic Culture Foundation | 16.01.2018

A headline in the US military magazine Stars and Stripes last September was eye-catching. It told readers that there were “Big guns, better chow for US soldiers on Russia deterrence mission” in Lithuania. Apparently the guns and chow were provided for the “500 173rd Airborne Brigade soldiers that swooped into the Baltics this month on a mission to deter Russian aggression.”

Then the UK’s Observer newspaper informed us that “US Special Forces have been deployed close to the border with Russia as part of a ‘persistent’ presence of American troops in the Baltics. Dozens of special ops soldiers are being stationed along Europe’s eastern flank to reassure NATO allies Latvia, Lithuania and Estonia. The move will also allow the US to monitor Russian manoeuvres amid fears of further destabilisation following its annexation of Crimea in 2014… US special operations forces will complement around 4,000 NATO troops posted to Poland, Lithuania, Estonia and Latvia in the coming months.”

It was noted by Nick Turse on January 9 that “for the past two years the US has maintained a Special Operations contingent in almost every nation on Russia’s western border. As Special Operations Command chief General Raymond Thomas put it last year, ‘We’ve had persistent presence in every country — every NATO country and others on the border with Russia doing phenomenal things with our allies, helping them prepare for their threats.”

What threats? What Russian aggression? What destabilisation? Russia has never threatened any Baltic State and there is not the slightest piece of evidence that Russia wants to invade Lithuania. Their trade balance is that Russia imports total $2.5 billion a year from Lithuania and exports are $3.3 billion and it is in the best interests of both countries to expand this mutually beneficial arrangement, although it seems a trifle strange that although Lithuania’s exports declined by 2.5 per cent in 2016, this was in part “explained by the drop in exports of oil products (due to American competition).”

But all US and most European mainstream media claim that when the majority of the citizens of Crimea voted in a referendum to rejoin Russia, this was somehow evidence of Russian aggression, extending to the Baltic.

As the BBC reported in March 2014, “voters were asked whether they wanted to join Russia, or have greater autonomy within Ukraine” and made their preference clear. In the period between the US-inspired coup in Ukraine and the vote to rejoin Russia there was not a single case of bloodshed in Crimea. The Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe was asked by the government of Crimea to send representatives to monitor the referendum but refused to do so.

There were energetic attempts in the West to paint the post-accession treatment of Ukrainians in Crimea as harsh, but even the ultra-right-wing UK Daily Telegraph reported that “Like many of the Ukrainian servicemen in Crimea, the 600-strong marine battalion in Feodosia has strong local links. Many of the men are either local recruits or have served here so long they have put down roots. Only about 140 of the 600-strong battalion stationed here are expected to return to Ukraine. The remainder, with local family and friends, have opted to remain in Crimea — the land they call home.”

Exactly a year after the referendum Forbes noted that “… the Crimeans are happy right where they are . . . poll after poll shows that the locals there — be they Ukrainians, ethnic Russians or Tatars — are mostly all in agreement: life with Russia is better than life with Ukraine… Despite huge efforts on the part of Kiev, Brussels, Washington and the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe, the bulk of humanity living on the Black Sea peninsula believe the referendum to secede from Ukraine was legit.” Not much evidence of Russian aggression there — but a great deal of evidence of Western interference aimed at destabilising the region.

The US-NATO military alliance, the Brussels-Washington nexus mentioned by Forbes, refuses to believe that the citizens of the Peninsula are content or that Russia has no desire to “annex” any territory. As Stars and Stripes informs us, the big guns and better chow for US soldiers sent to Russia’s border are “part of Operation Atlantic Resolve, the United States’ commitment to deter aggression in Europe in response to Russia’s 2014 annexation of the Crimean Peninsula.” The drumbeat of “annexation” is continuous and as with many propaganda campaigns has succeeded because Western media seldom permit publication of even-handed accounts of what actually happened. The Psyops campaign directors are guided by the old saying that “if you tell a lie big enough and keep repeating it, people will eventually come to believe it”, which is wrongly attributed to Josef Goebbels but spot on for accuracy.

In February 2015 the Washington Times and the UK’s Daily Mail published an objective piece by Steven Hurst of Associated Press in which he stated that “Since the Soviet collapse [the US-NATO military alliance] — as Moscow had feared — has spread eastward, expanding along a line from Estonia in the north to Romania and Bulgaria in the south. The Kremlin claims it had Western assurances that would not happen. Now, Moscow’s only buffers to a complete NATO encirclement on its western border are Finland, Belarus and Ukraine. The Kremlin would not have to be paranoid to look at that map with concern.”

Steven Hurst, it should be noted, is an “AP international political writer [who] reported from Moscow for 12 years and has covered international relations for 33 years.” No Western mainstream media published his piece of balanced analysis. Well, they wouldn’t would they? — it didn’t fit with the propaganda line.

After the Warsaw Pact disbanded in March 1991 the US-NATO military alliance, although deprived of any reason to continue in existence not only kept going but in 1999 added Poland, the Czech Republic and Hungary to its then 16 members. As the BBC noted, these countries became “the first former Soviet bloc states to join NATO, taking the alliance’s borders some 400 miles towards Russia.”

NATO continued to expand around Russia’s borders, with Bulgaria, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Romania, Slovakia and Slovenia joining in 2004. As President Putin observed in an interview with Italy’s Corriere della Sera in 2015, “we are not expanding anywhere; it is NATO infrastructure, including military infrastructure, that is moving towards our borders. Is this a manifestation of our aggression?”

But US Big Guns and Better Chow will continue to surge against Russia’s borders, as the US-NATO alliance continues its confrontation. Russia will have to remain militarily alert for the foreseeable future, until saner councils prevail in the West’s military-industrial complex.

January 16, 2018 Posted by | Militarism, Russophobia, Timeless or most popular | , | Leave a comment

What’s Wrong with Liberal Jews?

Progressive except for Palestine

By Philip Giraldi • Unz Review • January 16, 2018

Jerry Seinfeld, the Jewish American comedian, who was performing in Tel Aviv Israel at the Menora Mavtichim Arena at the end of December, recently made the news over his real live adventure at an anti-terrorism tourism camp. The so-called Counter Terror and Security Academy named Caliber 3 is a tourist training camp near the Efrat settlement south of Bethlehem, which means it is, appropriately enough, actually built on land stolen from the Palestinians. The camp’s website commemorated the Seinfeld visit by posting notice of the participation of “the legendary Jerry Seinfeld and his family,” plus photos, in a vignette that has since been removed.

The Caliber 3 website describes itself as “the leading counter terror and security training academy, run by active members of the IDF.” The day visit includes a “shooting adventure” involving a simulated suicide bombing in a Jerusalem marketplace as well as a terrorist knife attack. The package, which costs $115 per adult and $85 for children, includes sniper training and a demonstration of the use of attack dogs against a terrorist suspect.

The bad guys in the scenarios were inevitably the Palestinians, invariably described as “terrorists,” and the heroes were the Israeli army and police who were, of course, protecting innocent Jewish civilians. Jerry was photographed grinning and his entire entourage cheered and waved to demonstrate what a wonderful time they were having.

Now Jerry Seinfeld is not just a funny man, he is also a hard-core Hollywood-by-way-of-New York liberal and he may actually believe nonsense like Benjamin Netanyahu really wants peace or that a two-state solution for Israel-Palestine would work just fine, not recognizing that that ship has already sailed. Most of his peers in the heavily Jewish entertainment industry are also politically liberal, though they would likely choose to be called “progressive,” the preferred nomenclature since Ronald Reagan made liberal unfashionable.

Jerry is probably full of warm and fuzzy feelings about racial injustice, illegal immigrants and voting rights in America but he is either unaware or indifferent to the fact that a fundamentally racist Israel is preparing to expel or imprison forty-thousand African asylum seekers and that hundreds of thousands of Arabs who are under the life-and-death control of the Israeli security services have no rights whatsoever apart from being tried by military tribunals where the conviction rate is 99%. Nor is Jerry or any of his Hollywood friends likely to stage a benefit for 16 year old Ahed Tamimi, who is in prison in Israel facing a possible life in prison sentence for having slapped an Israeli soldier from a patrol that had invaded her family home in her West Bank village shortly after shooting her cousin in the head.

I have to believe that Jerry doesn’t obsess much over his Israeli hosts having stolen someone else’s land and killing them if they resist. But I also have to believe that if Jerry were to witness a training camp like C-3 in the United States where the shooting of black people or illegal Mexicans were simulated he would no doubt be both outraged and disgusted, even though somehow shooting simulated Arabs and grinning while doing so does not appear to bother him one bit.

Unfortunately, Jerry the Jewish liberal is not that unusual. American Jews, who are the key to the continuing blank check American support of Israel, balk at recognizing the evil that the self-defined Jewish state represents even though both opinion polls and voting patterns suggest strongly that they are predominantly reliably liberal regarding both social and political issues. Israel does, in fact, reject the values of most diaspora Jews while also contradicting the moral and ethical tradition of Judaism itself, which it claims to uphold. It is the antithesis of what many American Jews believe to be the right way to behave.

As a theocracy that acts like every other theocracy, including neighboring Saudi Arabia, Israel exists to promote the interests and well-being of its own co-ethnoreligionists, which means that the concerns of other religious groups or citizens are basically of no interest whatsoever. And Israel is not only a theocracy, it is also a prime model of a national security state where the military and police have a relatively free hand. In its interaction with the indigenous Arabs, Israel is a settler colonial state that regards the original inhabitants as inferior creatures only fit to be ethnically cleansed or, at best, to do menial work for their Jewish masters.

Israel has consequently been called an “apartheid state,” but some observers who actually experienced South African apartheid believe that what is practiced in Israel, where Palestinians are harassed at numerous military checkpoints and are routinely denied building and residency permits to force them to leave their homes, is far, far worse. “Liberal Zionist” Michelle Goldberg, writing recently in the New York Times, put it succinctly: “Supporters of Israel hate it when people use the word ‘apartheid’ to describe the country, but we don’t have another term for a political system in which one ethnic group rules over another, confining it to small islands of territory and denying it full political representation.”

Recently Israel has demonstrated its essential thuggishness by taking advantage of the Trump Jerusalem decision to legalize the expansion of its borders farther into the West Bank while also approving the building of more than 1,100 new houses. It has banned travel to Israel by representatives of twenty international organizations that have been critical of its behavior, including the Quaker American Friends Service Committee that saved many Jews during the Second World War as well as the largely Jewish Code Pink and Jewish Voice for Peace (JVP).

And the predominantly liberal highly educated and assimilated American Jews who choose to hold their noses and look the other way when Israel misbehaves exact a price on every other American. Lockstep support for Israel costs billions in U.S. Treasury provided and tax-exempt dollars annually, but does even more damage in terms of bad foreign policy choices and loss of respect from other nations due to Washington’s constant protecting of the murderous and corrupt Netanyahu government, defending the indefensible in a client state which contributes absolutely nothing to the well-being of Americans.

And then there are the wars fought at least in part on behalf of Israel, supported enthusiastically by the U.S. media and political class. Most recently, the White House and Israel have entered into a secret arrangement to destabilize Iran, which does not threaten the United States. Such pointless interventionism by Washington in the Middle East derives from the corruption of American politics and politicians due to Jewish money, a process that is currently working its way through various legislatures in seeking to define any criticism of Israel as anti-Semitism while also driving the same, labeled “hate speech,” from the internet. At the local level, government job seekers and those applying for public grants must actually agree in writing in some states not to boycott Israel, incredibly imposing rules relating to a foreign government on American citizens.

The recent bad decision to move the U.S. Embassy to Jerusalem came about mostly due to the millions of dollars that Israeli/American casino billionaire Sheldon Adelson pumped into the Trump election campaign. Adelson, who regrets having once served in the U.S. Army instead of that of Israel, once claimed that the Palestinians exist “to destroy Israel.” He has his Democratic Party counterpart in Hollywood’s Haim Saban, the principal donor to the Hillary Clinton campaign, who has claimed that he is a one issue guy and that issue is Israel.

Indeed, liberal Jews understand perfectly well, just as do most other observers, that the Israel story is a tale of follow the money, even if it is not considered polite to say so. The Jewish oligarch billionaires club – Adelson, Saban, Bernard Marcus, Paul Singer, Larry Ellison – who are to a man obsessed with protecting Israel, work together with major Jewish organizations to dominate the American political class through their largesse. Inevitably, they expect a quid pro quo and they almost always get what they want.

And then there are the venal bootlicking politicians who wallow in Israel-love for tribal reasons, my favorites being Senators Chuck Schumer and Ben Cardin. Schumer has designated himself the “shomer” or defender of Israel in the U.S. Senate, leading one to ask how is it possible that the voters in New York elect someone who says openly that he will protect the interests of another country rather than the United States? And how does such a reptile become Senate Minority Leader? More money assiduously applied to the Democratic National Committee, one suspects.

Allan Brownfeld of the American Council for Judaism describes the situation with considerable clarity. He says Judaism is a religion and Israel is a country. The two should never be confused and active or tacit support for the bad behavior by Israel actually damages the ethical basis of Judaism. American Jews are first and foremost Americans and that is where their loyalty should lie, not with a foreign country.

Gilad Atzmon has a somewhat different take on the dilemma confronting diaspora Jews who are somewhat befuddled, if not completely convinced, by the Israeli government claims that it represents all Jews worldwide. He writes “if Israel defines itself as the Jewish State and decorates its F-35s with Jewish symbols, we are entitled to ask who are the Jews, what is Judaism, what is Jewishness and how all these terms relate to each other! Evidently these questions terrify some Jewish ethnic activists.”

Some would argue that there is growing sentiment among liberal American Jews, particularly the younger ones, to dissociate from Israel and to condemn its behavior. To be sure this would appear to be true, and there are also numerous Jewish dominated “progressive” organizations that are highly critical of Israel’s current government. Many of them are astonishingly ineffective, suggesting that there is a certain ambivalence among the critics. This arises in part, I suspect, because they ultimately want to protect Israel as a Jewish state, only demanding that it somehow behave better and be nice to the Palestinians, but there is no likelihood that that will happen in the foreseeable future given the lack of any significant political party in Israel that would support such a development.

This process of rationalizing ultimately contradictory theses has been described as working from inside the Jewish bubble and is related to the politics of Jewish identity. Groups like Jewish Voice for Peace (JVP) do not really see themselves as Americans speaking to other Americans about the impact of Israel on the United States. Instead, they identify as Jews addressing worldwide Jewry over the issue of how to support Jewish supremacy in Israel/Palestine as a sine qua non of Jewish identity while doing what is necessary to avoid unpleasant consequences. The effect of this ambivalence from inside is corrosive, leading some to believe that Jewish gatekeepers will successfully misdirect grassroots movements like Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) to make sure that they do no real damage to the Jewish state just as they have already hamstrung groups demanding an end to the Israeli occupation of the West Bank.

It has also been observed that Jewish liberals who oppose Israeli policies frequently have more pity for themselves than for the people under Netanyahu’s jackboot and their proposals frequently defer to Israeli interests. And sometimes there are personal interests at stake. Rebecca Vilkomerson of JVP, who was blacklisted by Israel and will be unable to travel there, is married to an Israeli Jonathan Lebowitsch, who is a Solution Architect at Checkpoint, a cybersecurity company with ties to the Israeli military. She is now for the first time living with a reality imposed by the Israeli government that is analogous to what many Palestinians have experienced since 1948, i.e. being unable to go back to the homes that their families have lived in for generations. And she is a Jew who has broken no law, dealing with a Jewish state that is proclaimed to be the “only democracy in the Middle East.”

Other groups like J-Street veer even further in the direction of compromise with Israeli interests, basically wanting a Jewish state that is less offensive to the international audience, with some kind of fantasy concordat with the Arabs that will make the issue of what kind of place Israel really is less visible. Some time ago, I attended a J Street sponsored talk by a retired Israeli general who was supposed to be of the “peace” party. His message: “Iran must be destroyed.”

I used to believe that educating the American public about what is really going on in the Middle East would bring about a change in policy. I don’t believe it any longer because Jews control the media and the message. As Peter Beinart puts it, “In part that’s because establishment Jewish discourse about Israel is, in large measure, American public discourse about Israel. Watch a discussion of Israel on American TV and what you’ll hear, much of the time, is a liberal American Jew (Thomas Friedman, David Remnick) talking to a centrist American Jew (Dennis Ross, Alan Dershowitz) talking to a hawkish American Jew (William Kristol, Charles Krauthammer), each articulating different Zionist positions.”

And beyond the media there is the heavy hand of the agitprop being disseminated by the Trump Administration. U.S. ambassador to Israel David Friedman, who recently tried to expunge the word “occupation” from the State Department language describing Israel’s colonization of the West Bank, claimed falsely last week that the Palestinians and their leadership are to blame for the lack of a peace deal with Israel. The statement by Friedman denounced Hamas for praising a drive-by shooting that killed an Israeli Rabbi in a West Bank attack. “An Israeli father of six was killed last night in cold blood by Palestinian terrorists. Hamas praises the killers and PA laws will provide them financial rewards.” Friedman said. “Look no further to why there is no peace.” Friedman supports the fanatical settler movement and has never expressed any sympathy for the far more numerous Palestinian children killed in the past two months by Israeli security forces.

It is undoubtedly true that an increasing number of Jewish American liberals have been troubled by the Israeli police state, which politically has tilted increasingly hard right. Even with an accommodating media, the Israeli refusal to end the occupation of the West Bank and the strangling of the open-air prison that is Gaza have been very visible and have made many question the state’s democratic pretensions. The military domination of a subject population also has a demographic downside in that the land controlled by Israel includes over 6.2 million Palestinian Arabs and about 6.5 million Jews. The Palestinian birthrate is higher than the Jewish birthrate and, in twenty years, Arabs will outnumber Jews in what might be described as Greater Israel, but it is now clear that Israel as it currently sees itself will never grant those Arabs equal rights or give up its attempt to completely dominate the region from the Jordan River to the sea.

Why is all this obsessing over the paradoxical behavior of Jewish liberals important? It is important because American Jews are hugely over-represented in the places that matter: in the media, in entertainment, in politics, in financial services, in the professions, in the arts and in education. It has been my own personal experience that some prominent Jewish critics of Israel resent identical criticism coming from non-Jews and tend to use their resources to marginalize it, frequently alleging that it is motivated by anti-Semitism. That means that the goyim will never be able to shift the press or congress or the White House about how awful the connection with Israel really is, no matter what we say or do, but as soon as Jewish American liberals get on board and convince themselves that they cannot stand any more of the lying about Israel change will come. It is all about Jewish power in America, but this time as a potential positive force. Guys like Jerry Seinfeld will have to figure out that performing in Israel and playing around for a laugh at their counter-terrorist indoctrination centers that simulate shooting Arabs is not exactly acceptable. We might even get Hollywood on board to produce an honest movie about the plight of the Palestinians.

Philip M. Giraldi, Ph.D., is Executive Director of the Council for the National Interest, a 501(c)3 tax deductible educational foundation that seeks a more interests-based U.S. foreign policy in the Middle East. Website is, address is P.O. Box 2157, Purcellville VA 20134 and its email is

January 16, 2018 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Progressive Hypocrite, Timeless or most popular, Wars for Israel | , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Statin Drugs – The Real Reason Official Guidelines Still Demonize Fats Despite the Evidence?

By Gabriela Segura, M.D. | | January 15, 2018

Nina Teicholz, investigative journalist and author of the International bestseller The Big Fat Surprise, wrote an article for the BMJ (formerly the British Medical Journal) in September 2015, which makes the case for the inadequacy of the scientific advice that underpins the Dietary Guidelines (Teicholz, 2015). The title of the article was “The scientific report guiding the U.S. dietary guidelines: is it scientific?” Ian Leslie writing for The Guardian reports that the response of the nutrition establishment was ferocious: 173 scientists – some of whom were on the advisory panel, and many of whose work had been critiqued in Teicholz’s book – signed a letter to the BMJ, demanding it retract the piece (Leslie, 2016). Prominent cardiovascular and nutrition scientists from 19 countries called for the retraction. However, to this day, the article remains published. The BMJ has officially announced that it will not retract the peer-reviewed investigation after stating that two independent experts conducted formal post-publication reviews of the article and found no grounds for retraction (Sboros, 2016).

Yet, behind every mainstream medical practice, strict questionable guidelines are still followed faithfully every day. Doctors are still following cholesterol targets that are often unattainable without cholesterol lowering drugs, but many do try to achieve their targets with extremely low fat diets recommended irresponsibly in dietary guidelines.

Unfortunately the rest of the world has followed suit on these dietary changes. Traditional high fat foods have been given up for the low fat scam. Promoters of the highly touted Mediterranean diet, with its olive oil and ‘low animal fat’, fail to mention the fact that there are still fat loaded recipes that were passed from generation to generation among the Mediterranean people. Lardo di Colonnata with its cured strips of fatback and herbs and spices; Greek barbecue which often involves an entire lamb roasted on a spit; or the kokoretsi which is made from the internal organs of the lamb – liver, spleen, heart, glands – threaded onto skewers along with the fatty membrane from the lamb intestines, all of these are foods of the long-lived Mediterranean people. Yet the ‘American style Mediterranean Diet’ selectively picks foods from the diet of the Mediterranean people to give the picture they desire. Ironically, many of the Mediterranean people have adopted this Americanized version of the ‘Mediterranean Diet’.

The truth is that cholesterol is a substance our bodies make naturally, and it’s absolutely essential to our health. Cholesterol is so crucial that the body produces some 1000-1400 milligrams of it each day, mainly in the liver. Cholesterol is also synthesized to a smaller extent in the adrenal glands, intestines, reproductive organs, etc.

We are told by the “Official Thought-Control Institutions” to limit consumption to less than 300 milligrams of cholesterol per day, but our liver’s production of cholesterol is controlled by a feedback mechanism based on how much we eat. If we eat a lot of cholesterol, we produce less, leaving much needed liver energy for other important tasks. If we eat little cholesterol, replacing it with carbohydrates and vegetable oils, then the body will produce the cholesterol from these dietary raw materials. However, a high-carb and vegetable oil diet yields a very bad cholesterol profile even when the cholesterol is in normal range. If we hardly eat any cholesterol and we block its production with lowering cholesterol drugs, then we are limiting the supply of something the body desperately needs for its proper function. Yet statins, cholesterol-lowering drugs, are among the most profitable drugs in the history of the world.

Restricting or eliminating cholesterol in the diet overburdens the liver, which now has to overproduce it through its enzyme HMG-CoA reductase from food in our diet. This enzyme is the one that is blocked by statin drugs for the purpose of lowering the amount of cholesterol the body produces. But, as with all pharmaceuticals, it comes with a price. HMG-CoA reductase is also the enzyme needed for the creation of coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10), which is a key nutrient for energy production in our cells. CoQ10 is also a major antioxidant. People complain of muscle cramps or aches while on statins drugs. Keep in mind that your heart is a muscle as well. Coincidence or not, the incidence of congestive heart failure has spiked during the time statins have been a top selling drug. Even when statin drugs are not at fault for the increased prevalence of congestive heart failure during the last decades, we don’t necessarily want to decrease CoQ10 levels in a failing heart.

Coenzyme Q10 – also called ubiquinone, which means ‘occurring everywhere’ – plays an important role in the manufacture of ATP, the fuel of our cells. It is present in every cell of our bodies, especially in the very active cells of our hearts. Depriving the heart of CoQ10 is like removing the spark plug from an engine. It just won’t work. Low levels of CoQ10 are involved in practically all cardiovascular diseases including angina, hypertension, cardiomyopathy and congestive heart failure (Sarter, 2002). It is ironic that statins, for “heart health”, block coenzyme Q10.

Statins’ many potential side effects include depression, confusion, memory problems and inability to concentrate. It hinders our body’s ability to fight microbes, increases liver damage, increases risk of cancer, fatigue, impotence, kidney failure, rhabdomyolysis (destruction of muscle cells) and shortness of breath among other things (for a database on statin adverse effects, see here). Cholesterol levels that are below 150 mg/dL may increase the risk for cancer, hormonal imbalances, depression, sexual dysfunction, memory loss, Parkinson’s disease, type 2 diabetes, stroke, suicide, and violent behavior.

As scientists are beginning to understand the intricacies of cholesterol’s role in the function of our trillions of cell membranes, including the details of nutrient transport across membranes, they are starting to realize what a bad idea this whole statin business is. Well, some of them are, anyway. According to some researchers:

Current guidelines encourage ambitious long term cholesterol lowering with statins, in order to decrease cardiovascular disease events. However, by regulating the biosynthesis of cholesterol we potentially change the form and function of every cell membrane from the head to the toe. As research into cell morphology and membrane function realises more dependencies upon cholesterol rich lipid membranes, our clinical understanding of long term inhibition of cholesterol biosynthesis is also changing.” (Wainwright, Mascitelli, & Goldstein, 2009, p. 289)

We make highly unstable and dysfunctional cell membranes when we restrict organic animal fats. This harmful effect has far reaching consequences. And doctors, unfortunately, don’t seem to be receiving this information.

The past decade of research has shown the importance of cholesterol-rich membranes and their fundamental implications for our brain and nervous tissue, immune system and all areas where lipoproteins are created, secreted, delivered and utilized. Cholesterol is so vital to the formation and correct operation of the brain that neurons require additional cholesterol to be secreted by brain cells. No wonder some people lose their memories with statin therapy!

Statin drugs also impair the secretion of new myelin, the fatty coating that covers the nerve cells and facilitates their firing. The connection between cholesterol and its fundamental role in the immune system and in the cell membrane should also be kept in mind when it comes to autoimmune diseases.

Modern guidelines say that it is desirable to have a level of total cholesterol of less than 200 mg/dL. When I was in medical school, which was not that long ago, the upper limit was 240 mg/dL. Once upon a time, it used to be 280 mg/dl. Apparently, in 1970, the rule-of-thumb for a healthy serum cholesterol was in the 200 plus range. Now most doctors try to keep cholesterol below 200, which most people find very difficult (if not impossible) to achieve through diet and lifestyle changes alone. Since then, statin drugs like Lipitor became one of the all-time top-selling drugs in history (Angell, 2005).

The European guidelines on cardiovascular disease prevention in clinical practice (Piepoli et al., 2016) recommends that very high-risk patients lower their LDL cholesterol to less than 70mg/dL (<1.8 mmol/L) or “a reduction of at least 50% if the baseline is between 70 and 135 mg/dL (1.8 and 3.5 mmol/L).” (Ibid., p. 2331) Conveniently, pharmaceutical companies have the drug just for such a drastic reduction. For example Orvatez by Merck which combines ezetimibe (blocks the absorption of cholesterol) and atorvastatin (a statin drug) can bring LDL cholesterol down to 50 mg/dL. Merck highlights in a chart made for doctors that if a patient has a baseline LDL cholesterol of 70 mg/dL, target LDL should be of 35 mg/dL! And I’m not the only one who sees a problem with this. As the Mayo Clinic shyly puts it:

“There is no consensus on how to define very low LDL cholesterol, but LDL would be considered very low if it is less than 40 milligrams per deciliter of blood… very low levels of LDL cholesterol may be associated with an increased risk of cancer, hemorrhagic stroke, depression, anxiety, preterm birth and low birth weight if your cholesterol is low while you’re pregnant.” (Lopez-Jimenez, 2015, para. 2-3)

The above-mentioned European guidelines include a disclaimer where we read the following:

“[the] Guidelines do not override, in any way whatsoever, the individual responsibility of health professionals to make appropriate and accurate decisions in consideration of each patient’s health condition and in consultation with that patient and, where appropriate and/or necessary, the patient’s caregiver. Nor do the ESC Guidelines exempt health professionals from taking into full and careful consideration the relevant official updated recommendations or guidelines issued by the competent public health authorities, in order to manage each patient’s case in light of the scientifically accepted data pursuant to their respective ethical and professional obligations. It is also the health professional’s responsibility to verify the applicable rules and regulations relating to drugs and medical devices at the time of prescription.” (Piepoli et al., 2016, p. 2315)

Since I have first hand experience of the way research is done in Europe, most specifically Italy, I decided to have a look at the disclosure forms of the experts involved in the development of these guidelines. As it happens, there is no direct hyperlink to the disclosure from the electronic version. I found it hyperlinked in a smaller font as the last section of the menu on a separate page at their website. After a while you get good at digging for these details that very few are trained to look for and/or are interested in. The declaration of interest is a PDF file of 35 pages and it specifies that “the report below lists declarations of interest as reported to the ESC by the experts covering the period of the Guidelines production, from Task Force creation to publication.” (Available at

That is, the declaration of interest only covers 2014 and 2015, and it is not given by a third party. Most of the authors have so many links to Big Pharma that their declaration of interest can take an entire page. The reader can have fun searching for Big Pharma sponsoring for the years not covered for both the sponsored and the few authors who had nothing to declare in 2014 and 2015. I challenge anyone to find at least one author who chose to attend only conferences that were not financed by Big Pharma as a general rule for his entire career.

As Marcia Angell, Senior Lecturer in Social Medicine at Harvard Medical School and former Editor of the New England Journal of Medicine states:

If drug companies and medical educators were really providing education, doctors and academic institutions would pay them for their services. When you take piano lessons, you pay the teacher, not the other way around. But in this case, industry pays the academic institutions and faculty, and even the doctors who take the courses. The companies are simply buying access to medical school faculty and to doctors in training and practice.

This is marketing masquerading as education. It is self-evidently absurd to look to companies for critical, unbiased education about products they sell. It’s like asking a brewery to teach you about alcoholism, or a Honda dealer for a recommendation about what car to buy. Doctors recognize this in other parts of their lives, but they’ve convinced themselves that drug companies are different. That industry-sponsored education is a masquerade is underscored by the fact that some of the biggest Madison Avenue ad agencies, hired by drug companies to promote their products, also own their own medical-education companies. It’s one-stop shopping for the industry.[…]

It’s easy to fault drug companies for much of what I’ve described, and they certainly deserve a great deal of blame. Most of the big drug companies have paid huge fines to settle charges of illegal activities. Last year Pfizer pleaded guilty and agreed to pay $2.3 billion to settle criminal and civil charges of marketing drugs for off-label uses-the largest criminal fine in history. The fines, while enormous, are still dwarfed by the profits generated by these activities, and are therefore not much of a deterrent. Still, apologists might argue that, despite its legal transgressions, the pharmaceutical industry is merely trying to do its primary job-furthering the interests of its investors-and sometimes it simply goes a little too far.

Doctors, medical schools, and professional organizations have no such excuse; the medical profession’s only fiduciary responsibility is to patients and the public. (emphasis added) (Angell, 2010, para. 35-36, 39-40)

If only health care professionals at large would take a stand against the massive conflict of interests from pharmaceutical and food industries and their role in the corruption of the medical science, it wouldn’t have come to the point where there are guidelines advising the reduction of cholesterol to levels never seen before in medical records. Another line of research would have been followed where dietary and environmental factors and their role in inflammation and our health would play a greater role. Hopefully we will wake up soon, otherwise we risk a guideline recommending zero levels of LDL cholesterol. It sounds absurd, but then, I thought that an LDL target 35 mg/dL would shock conventional practitioners to realize the absurdity of these recommendations, and that doesn’t seem to have happened.

Statin drugs are among the most profitable drugs in the history of the world. Those profits buy a lot of propaganda: lobbyists, advertising and marketing to doctors, and free continuing medical education. Think of what even a small percentage of their massive profits could do for prevention if it were invested in public education towards a truly health promoting diet. Think of all the diseases that would essentially disappear from the face of the planet. But expecting a corporation to willingly cut off its main source of profit is a pipe dream. Even if they knew the truth about diet, it would be kept as the most tightly guarded secret in history.

It’s really not in the drug-maker’s’ best interest to have people making healthy dietary choices. So instead of promoting prevention strategies, cholesterol drugs continue to post record-breaking profits and create poor health and side effects in the people taking them. Those people in poor health can then be treated with more drugs. How many people do you know on multiple medications for various ailments? Whether the cause if malfeasance or ignorance is largely irrelevant because the result is the same.

It is only your own awareness that can turn things around. The public is gradually awakening to the fact that statins are virtually useless for the vast majority of people who take them, and yet they carry significant risks.

A group of eminent doctors including the President of the Royal College of Physicians, Sir Richard Thompson, argue in a declaration letter that a doctor making a case for these drugs can quite easily look ill-informed, biased or just plain stupid in the eyes of their patients. According to one of the letter’s signatories, Dr David Newman, Assistant Professor of Emergency Medicine and Director of clinical research at Mount Sinai School of Medicine:

I am always embarrassed when I have to tell patients that our treatment guidelines were written by a panel filled with people who stood to gain financially from their decisions. The UK certainly appears to be no different to that of the United States. The truth is, for most people at low risk of cardiovascular disease, a statin will give them diabetes as often as it will prevent a non fatal heart attack – and they won’t live any longer taking the pill. That’s not what patients are looking for. (Briffa, 2014, para. 20)

The letter was addressed to the chair of NICE, the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence in the United Kingdom. In the letter, the proposition to reduce the threshold for prescribing statins to those with a 10% risk of cardiovascular disease is rejected by addressing six major concerns (letter available at

  1. The medicalization of millions of healthy individuals
  2. Conflicting levels of adverse events
  3. Hidden data
  4. Industry bias
  5. Loss of professional confidence
  6. Conflicts of interest

So again we see guidelines being written to favor the industry and the over-medicalization of millions of people.

Ironically, the very same experts for some of these guidelines disagree, calling for expert groups such as the Adult Treatment Panel (ATP) IV to “abandon the paradigm of treating patients to LDL targets” (Hayward & Krumholz, 2012).

Blinded by the numbers, doctors will see LDL levels at 70 and say their patients are doing well. They could fail to see what might actually be in front of their eyes – an ill-looking and nutritionally deficient person. Cracking skin, plunging libido, muscle wasting, memory problems, blood sugar imbalances, premature aging – but hey, cholesterol numbers are right on the money! It is astounding to see how we as doctors do so little critical thinking, focusing only on arbitrary guidelines dictated by the same companies selling the drugs that are the only things that make the numbers possible. Talk about a collective blind spot facilitated by decades of programmed schooling. Even when a patient points out, ‘but I eat no fats and no salt and I’m getting worse!’, we might fail to connect the dots.

As if this weren’t enough, here’s another bit of irony. In one study, the use of statin drugs was associated with microalbuminuria (Van Der Tol et al., 2012). Microalbuminuria is a marker of poor endothelial function and it’s endothelial function which determines cardiovascular disease risk. Microalbuminuria is also a marker of kidney problems.

Similarly, in a study of nearly 26,000 beneficiaries of Tricare – the military health system in the United States – those taking statin drugs to control their cholesterol were 87 percent more likely to develop diabetes. The research confirmed past findings on the link between statins and diabetes risk, but it is among the first to show the connection in a relatively healthy group of people. The study included only people who at baseline were free of heart disease, diabetes, and other severe chronic disease (Veterans Affairs Research Communications, 2015).

In this same study, statin use was also associated with a very high risk of diabetes complications. Among 3351 pairs of similar patients–part of the overall study group–those patients on statins were 250 percent more likely than their non-statin-using counterparts to develop diabetes with complications (Mansi, Frei, Wang, & Mortensen, 2015). Statin users were also 14 percent more likely to become overweight or obese after being on the drugs. The study also found that the higher the dose of any of the statins, the greater the risk of diabetes, diabetes complications, and obesity. Ironically, it is those who have had a cardiovascular disease event who are prescribed higher doses of statin drugs.

Moreover, more frequent statin drug use is associated with accelerated coronary artery and aortic artery calcification, both of which greatly contribute to cardiovascular and all-cause mortality (Saremi, Bahn, & Reaven, 2012). An evaluation of thousands of individuals with no known cardiovascular disease and undergoing a coronary CT angiography which visualizes atherosclerosis, concluded that statin use is associated with an increased prevalence and extent of coronary plaques possessing calcium (Nakazato et al., 2012). So doctors might be prescribing a medicine that contributes to onset of the very thing they are trying to prevent.

In the meantime, people are getting increasingly high levels of calcified hearts. During heart surgery, the surgical instrument known as the ‘bone eater’ ends up being used to replace valves that should have remained silky and smooth. I know what I speak after witnessing and conducting thousands of open heart surgeries in three different countries.

Two top vascular surgeons have summarized statins in a damning report called “The Ugly Side of Statins. Systemic Appraisal of the Contemporary Un-Known Unknowns“. In the report they state: “The statin industry is the utmost medical tragedy of all times,” and that “statins are associated with triple the risk of coronary artery and aortic calcification.” (Sultan & Hynes, 2013, p. 180, 183)

The picture isn’t pretty. The decades of massive anti-fat propaganda has brainwashed all of us without exception. Upon being questioned about their dietary habits, a patient might guiltily recall all the fats they ate and think that those are to blame for their health woes. Never mind that they eat mostly carbs, or that most of the fats they do eat are of the processed, plastic and vegetable oil variety. On doctors orders, they remove the animal fat from their diets, thereby increasing the carbs and vegetable oils, the very two steps that will deteriorate their health. When and if cholesterol targets are not reached by these measures, then the doctor has ‘no choice’ but to put them on a statin drug.

There is, however, a small percentage of people out there who genuinely have a true genetic predisposition to high blood cholesterol called familial hypercholesterolemia, which is a condition which is characterized by an impaired or even lack of ability to metabolize cholesterol. This condition can have serious health consequences and sufferers may need medical interventions to bring their cholesterol levels down. But that doesn’t mean this can be extrapolated to all people who don’t have this genetic problem.

Medical research has not proven that lowering (or low) cholesterol in and of itself reduces risk of death from heart disease across a population (Siri-Tarino, Sun, Hu, & Krauss, 2010; Chowdhury et al., 2014). Men with very low cholesterol levels seem prone to premature death. Below 160 milligrams per deciliter (mg/dl), the lower the cholesterol level, the shorter the lifespan. These men die of cancer, respiratory and digestive diseases, and trauma (Smith, 1997). As for women, if anything, the higher their cholesterol, the longer they seem to live (Teicholz, 2014).

Despite these facts, it is estimated that by 2020, revenues from statin drug sales will reach 1 trillion dollars. Never mind that most people taking these drugs are not at risk for heart disease.


Angell, M. (2005). The truth about the drug companies: How they deceive us and what to do about it. New York: Random House Trade Paperbacks.

Angell, M. (2010, May 1). Big Pharma, Bad Medicine. Retrieved from

Briffa, J. (2014, June 18). Prominent doctors declare their opposition to the planned expansion of statin prescribing. Retrieved from

Chowdhury, R., Warnakula, S., Kunutsor, S., Crowe, F., Ward, H. A., Johnson, L., . . . Angelantonio, E. D. (2014). Association of dietary, circulating, and supplement fatty acids with coronary risk. Annals of Internal Medicine, 160(6), 398-406. doi:10.7326/m13-1788

Hayward, R. A., & Krumholz, H. M. (2012). Three reasons to abandon low-density lipoprotein targets: An open letter to the adult treatment panel IV of the National Institutes of Health. Circulation: Cardiovascular Quality and Outcomes, 5(1), 2-5. doi:10.1161/circoutcomes.111.964676

Leslie, I. (2016, April 07). The sugar conspiracy | Ian Leslie. Retrieved from

Lopez-Jimenez, F. (2015, October 30). Cholesterol level: Can it be too low? Retrieved from

Mansi, I., Frei, C. R., Wang, C., & Mortensen, E. M. (2015). Statins and new-onset diabetes mellitus and diabetic complications: A retrospective cohort study of US healthy adults. Journal of General Internal Medicine, 30(11), 1599-1610. doi:10.1007/s11606-015-3335-1

Nakazato, R., Gransar, H., Berman, D. S., Cheng, V. Y., Lin, F. Y., Achenbach, S., . . . Min, J. K. (2012). Statins use and coronary artery plaque composition: Results from the International Multicenter CONFIRM Registry. Atherosclerosis, 225(1), 148-153. doi:10.1016/j.atherosclerosis.2012.08.002

Piepoli, M. F., Hoes, A. W., Agewall, S., Albus, C., Brotons, C., Catapano, A. L., . . . Verschuren, W. M. (2016). 2016 European Guidelines on cardiovascular disease prevention in clinical practice. European Heart Journal, 37(29), 2315-2381. doi:10.1093/eurheartj/ehw106

Saremi, A., Bahn, G., & Reaven, P. D. (2012). Progression of vascular calcification is increased with statin use in the Veterans Affairs Diabetes Trial (VADT). Diabetes Care, 35(11), 2390-2392. doi:10.2337/dc12-0464

Sarter, B. (2002). Coenzyme Q10 and cardiovascular disease: A review. The Journal of Cardiovascular Nursing, 16(4), 9-20. doi:10.1097/00005082-200207000-00003

Sboros, M. (2016, December 10). Victory for Teicholz in battle of butter. Retrieved from

Siri-Tarino, P. W., Sun, Q., Hu, F. B., & Krauss, R. M. (2010). Meta-analysis of prospective cohort studies evaluating the association of saturated fat with cardiovascular disease. American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, 91(3), 535-546. doi:10.3945/ajcn.2009.27725

Sultan, S., & Hynes, N. (2013). The ugly side of statins. Systemic appraisal of the contemporary un-known unknowns. Open Journal of Endocrine and Metabolic Diseases, 03(03), 179-185. doi:10.4236/ojemd.2013.33025

Teicholz, N. (2014). The big fat surprise: Why butter, meat, and cheese belong in a healthy diet. New York: Simon and Schuster.

Van Der Tol, A., Van Biesen, W., Van Laecke, S., Bogaerts, K., De Lombaert, K., Warrinnier, H., & Vanholder, R. (2012). Statin use and the presence of microalbuminuria. Results from the ERICABEL trial: A non-interventional epidemiological cohort study. PLoS ONE, 7(2). doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0031639

Veterans Affairs Research Communications. (2015, May 07). Strong statin-diabetes link seen in large study. Retrieved from

Wainwright, G., Mascitelli, L., & Goldstein, M. R. (2009). Cholesterol lowering therapies and membrane cholesterol. Stable plaque at the expense of unstable membranes? Archives of Medical Science, (5), 289-295.


Gabriela Segura, M.D.

Dr. Gaby was born into a mixed Eastern-Western family in Costa Rica and she is a countryside family medicine doctor and former heart surgeon. Her research in the medical field, the true nature of our world and all things related to healing have taken her to Italy, Canada, France and Spain. Gaby is co-host of the ‘Health and Wellness’ show on the SOTT Radio Network and her writings can be found at The Health Matrix.

January 16, 2018 Posted by | Corruption, Full Spectrum Dominance, Science and Pseudo-Science, Timeless or most popular | | Leave a comment

Denmark wants huge hike in military budget ‘to deter Russia’

Press TV – January 16, 2018

The Danish government aims to increase its military spending to counter an alleged security threat from Russia in Eastern Europe.

During a visit to the Danish Air Force team in Lithuania on Monday, Danish Prime Minister Lars Lokke Rasmussen said his center-right minority government needed to persuade the Danish parliament next month to back a proposed, whopping 20-percent hike in Denmark’s military budget over a five-year period.

“We want to look at ourselves as a core NATO member. And in order to behave like such a member, we need to increase our expenditures,” Rasmussen said.

An agreement made in 2006 calls on NATO member countries to have a military spending of at least two percent of their GDP. While many members of the military alliance have refused to allocate that percentage of their GDP to the military, some have recently been invoking the agreement in an ostensible attempt to deter Russia.

The Danish prime minister said his country’s military budget needed a “substantial increase.”

“Five years ago we thought that the defense line, so to speak, would not be in Europe, but would be international operations. Now we realize that we need to have the capability to do both,” he added.

The brandishing of a “Russian threat” comes while NATO member states have significantly increased their military activities near Russia’s western borders in recent years.

Last week, Denmark deployed 200 troops to a UK-led NATO mission in Estonia, citing the alleged threat from Russia. NATO has deployed around 4,000 troops, consisting of four battle groups, to Estonia, Lithuania, Latvia, and Poland — all near Russian borders — in recent years.

Russia, realizing that security threat under its nose, has held several military drills to maintain preparedness. The NATO countries have then referred to those drills as signs that Russia has aggressive and not defensive intentions.

NATO — largely made up of Western European countries — also accuses Russia of having a hand in the crisis in Ukraine, which Moscow denies.

Eastern Ukraine has been the site of a conflict since 2014, when the government in Kiev started a crackdown on pro-Russia protests in the country. Earlier that same year, the Crimean Peninsula, then Ukrainian territory, voted in a referendum to separate from Ukraine and join the Russian Federation. Western countries branded the subsequent unification as an “annexation” of the territory by Russia, and Ukraine soon confronted pro-Russia protests elsewhere — in its eastern Donbass region — with a heavy hand.

The crisis in the Donbass soon turned into an armed conflict, which has so far left over 10,000 people dead and more than a million others displaced. Western countries have blamed Russia, which denies any involvement.

“Russia’s behavior has created an unpredictable and unstable security environment in the Baltic Sea region,” Lokke Rasmussen, the Danish prime minister, said at a joint news conference with Latvian Prime Minister Maris Kucinskis in the capital, Riga.

“Given the Russian aggression and what happened in Crimea, I think we simply have to be realistic about things and invest more in our security,” he said.

January 16, 2018 Posted by | Militarism, Russophobia | , | 2 Comments