Aletho News

ΑΛΗΘΩΣ

The Persistent Myth of U.S. Precision Bombing

By Nicolas J S Davies | Consortium News | June 20, 2018

Opinion polls in the United States and the United Kingdom have found that a majority of the public in both countries has a remarkably consistent belief that only about 10,000 Iraqis were killed as a result of the U.S.-British invasion of Iraq in 2003.

Estimates of civilian deaths in Iraq actually range from 150,000 to 1.2 million. Part of the reason for the seriously misguided public perception may come from a serious belief in guided weapons, according to what the government tells people about “precision” bombing.  But one must ask how so many people can be killed if these weapons are so “precise,” for instance in one of “the most precise air campaigns in military history,” as a Pentagon spokesman characterized the total destruction last year of Raqqa in Syria.

The dreadful paradox of “precision weapons” is that the more the media and the public are wrongly persuaded of the near-magical qualities of these weapons, the easier it is for U.S. military and civilian leaders to justify using them to destroy entire villages, towns and cities in country after country: Fallujah, Ramadi and Mosul in Iraq; Sangin and Musa Qala in Afghanistan; Sirte in Libya; Kobane and Raqqa in Syria.

An Imprecise History

The skillful use of disinformation about “precision” bombing has been essential to the development of aerial bombardment as a strategic weapon. In a World War II propaganda pamphlet titled the “Ultimate Weapon of Victory”, the U.S. government hailed the B-17 bomber as “… the mightiest bomber ever built… equipped with the incredibly accurate Norden bomb sight, which hits a 25-foot circle from 20,000 feet.“

However, according to the website WW2Weapons, “With less than 50 per-cent cloud coverage an average B-17 Fortress Group could be expected to place 32.4% of its bombs within 1000 feet of the aiming point when aiming visually.” That could rise to 60 percent if flying at the dangerously low altitude of 11,000 feet in daylight.

The U.K.’s 1941 Butt Report found that only five percent of British bombers were dropping their bombs within five miles of their targets, and that 49 percent of their bombs were falling in “open country.”

In the “Dehousing Paper,” the U.K. government’s chief scientific adviser argued that mass aerial bombardment of German cities to “dehouse” and break the morale of the civilian population would be more effective than “precision” bombing aimed at military targets. British leaders agreed, and adopted this new approach: “area” or “carpet” bombing, with the explicit strategic purpose of “dehousing” Germany’s civilian population.

The U.S. soon adopted the same strategy against both Germany and Japan, and a U.S. airman quoted in the post-war U.S. Strategic Bombing Survey lampooned efforts at “precision” bombing as a “major assault on German agriculture.”

The destruction of North Korea by U.S.-led bombing and shelling in the Korean War was so total that U.S. military leaders estimated that they’d killed 20 percent of its population.

In the American bombing of Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia, the U.S. dropped more bombs than all sides combined in the Second World War, with full scale use of horrific napalm and cluster bombs.  The whole world recoiled from this mass slaughter, and even the U.S. was chastened into scaling back its military ambitions for at least a decade.

The American War in Vietnam saw the introduction of the “laser-guided smart bomb,” but the Vietnamese soon learned that the smoke from a small fire or a burning tire was enough to confuse its guidance system.  “They’d go up, down, sideways, all over the place,” a GI told Douglas Valentine, the author of The Phoenix Program. “And people would smile and say, ‘There goes another smart bomb!’  So smart a gook with a match and an old tire can fuck it up.”

Kicking the Vietnam Syndrome

President Bush Senior hailed the First Gulf War as the moment that America “kicked the Vietnam syndrome once and for all.” Deceptive information about “precision” bombing played a critical role in revitalizing U.S. militarism after defeat in Vietnam.

The U.S. and its allies ruthlessly carpet-bombed Iraq, reducing it from what a UN report later called “a rather highly urbanized and mechanized society” to “a pre-industrial age nation.” But the Western media enthusiastically swallowed Pentagon briefings and broadcast round-the-clock bomb-sight footage of a handful of successful “precision” strikes as if they were representative of the entire campaign. Later reports revealed that only seven percent of the 88,500 tons of bombs and missiles devastating Iraq were “precision” weapons.

The U.S. turned the bombing of Iraq into a marketing exercise for the U.S. war industry, dispatching pilots and planes straight from Kuwait to the Paris Air Show. The next three years saw record U.S. weapons exports, offsetting small reductions in U.S. arms procurement after the end of the Cold War.

The myth of “precision” bombing that helped Bush and the Pentagon “kick the Vietnam syndrome” was so successful that it has become a template for the Pentagon’s management of news in subsequent U.S. bombing campaigns since. It also gave us the disturbing euphemism “collateral damage” to indicate civilians killed by errant bombs.

‘Shock and Awe’

As the U.S. and U.K. launched their “Shock and Awe” attack on Iraq in 2003, Rob Hewson, the editor of Jane’s Air-Launched Weaponsestimated that about 20-25 percent of the U.S. and U.K.’s “precision” weapons were missing their targets in Iraq, noting that this was a significant improvement over the 1999 bombing of Yugoslavia, when 30-40 percent were off-target. “There’s a significant gap between 100 percent and reality,” Hewson said. “And the more you drop, the greater your chances of a catastrophic failure.”

Since World War II, the U.S. Air Force has loosened its definition of “accuracy” from 25 feet to 10 meters, but that is still less than the blast radius of even its smallest 500 lb. bombs. So the impression that these weapons can be used to surgically “zap” a single house or small building in an urban area without inflicting casualties and deaths throughout the surrounding area is certainly contrived.

“Precision” weapons comprised about two thirds of the 29,200 weapons aimed at the armed forces, people and infrastructure of Iraq in 2003. But the combination of 10,000 “dumb” bombs and 4,000 to 5,000 “smart” bombs and missiles missing their targets meant that about half of “Shock and Awe’s” weapons were as indiscriminate as the carpet bombing of previous wars. Saudi Arabia and Turkey asked the U.S. to stop firing cruise missiles through their territory after some went so far off-target that they struck their territory. Three also hit Iran.

“In a war that’s being fought for the benefit of the Iraqi people, you can’t afford to kill any of them,” a puzzled Hewson said. “But you can’t drop bombs and not kill people. There’s a real dichotomy in all of this.”

‘Precision’ Bombing Today

Since Barack Obama started the bombing of Iraq and Syria in 2014 more than 107,000 bombs and missiles have been launched. U.S. officials claim only a few hundred civilians have been killed. The British government persists in the utterly fantastic claim that none of its 3,700 bombs have killed any civilians at all.

Former Iraqi Foreign Minister Hoshyar Zebari, a Kurd from Mosul, told Patrick Cockburn of the Britain’s Independent newspaper that he’d seen Kurdish military intelligence reports that U.S. airstrikes and U.S., French and Iraqi artillery had killed at least 40,000 civilians in his hometown, with many more bodies still buried in the rubble. Almost a year later, this remains the only remotely realistic official estimate of the civilian death toll in Mosul. But no other mainstream Western media have followed up on it.

The consequences of U.S. air wars are hidden in plain sight, in endless photos and videos. The Pentagon and the corporate media may suppress the evidence, but the mass death and destruction of American aerial bombardment are only too real to the millions of people who have lived through it.


Nicolas J.S. Davies is the author of Blood On Our Hands: the American Invasion and Destruction of Iraq.

June 20, 2018 Posted by | Deception, Militarism, Timeless or most popular, War Crimes | , | Leave a comment

Trump withdrawal from UN Human Rights Council is business as usual for US

By John Laughland | RT | June 20, 2018

Unlike other decisions taken by Donald Trump the announcement that the US is leaving the UN Human Rights Council has a lot of background in the policies adopted by previous administrations, many of which also despised the body.

Trump has gone a little further than his predecessors but his attitude is not fundamentally different from theirs.

Not only has the US had a long-running dispute with the UN in general, over its budget contribution and the body’s alleged hostility towards Israel, it has also sought to undermine the role of the Human Rights Council in particular, long before Trump was elected.  A former US representative to the UN founded the NGO UN Watch in 1993 to campaign against the UN’s perceived anti-Israeli bias.

In 2004, even before the Human Rights Council was created in 2006, the USA sponsored the creation of a “democracy caucus” within the UN whose goal was to increase the influence of the US and its allies in the organization, on the basis that countries deemed democratic should have greater rights.

The potential for abuse of this principle was both enormous and obvious. Yet it reflected the decision taken by the Clinton administration in 1999 to arrogate to the US and its allies, especially NATO, the right to adjudicate and enforce human rights around the world. As the British Prime Minister Tony Blair explained at the time, the 78-day NATO attack against Yugoslavia was designed to establish this as a new principle of international relations. In its new strategic concept promulgated at the height of the bombing of a small Balkan country by the most powerful military alliance in the history of the world, NATO announced that “the abuse of human rights” was a security threat to which it had the right to react.

This in turn was a continuation of the assumptions underlying the creation of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) in November 1990, which provided a structure for covert operatives from Western states to manipulate elections across post-Communist Europe in the name of human rights and democracy promotion. The OSCE itself was initially created as the CSCE (Conference on Security and Co-operation in Europe) at Helsinki in 1975 when the goal was also to undermine the USSR on the same pretext.

So, when Nikki Haley, the US ambassador to the UN, says that the US will continue to “lead” on human rights from outside the Human Rights Council, she is not saying much that is new. The novelty lies only in that the US feels that it can no longer control that body. In 2011, things were the other way around: the US encouraged a gross abuse of the Human Rights Council’s own procedures when it helped secure the expulsion of Libya from it on 25 February 2011, without the Universal Periodic Review, which the HRC had published for Libya the previous month, being even considered.

The expulsion occurred on the basis of allegations made by bogus NGOs (front organizations for the then Libyan opposition) which, not surprisingly, turned out later to have been utterly baseless. But the momentum was such that a Security Council resolution was obtained on 17 March 2011 and NATO launched its attack two days later.

A war launched ostensibly to protect civilians was then used to effect regime change (as the then-Foreign Minister of France confirmed at the time), and no attempt was made to protect civilians deemed loyal to Gaddafi. NATO’s allies justified their massacre at Sirte in September 2011 by saying that the town’s residents had “chosen to die”. The fact that these decisions were taken “multilaterally”, as Emmanuel Macron likes to say, is irrelevant when it comes to judging their fundamental injustice.

The allegation of US double standards on human rights is probably familiar to many readers. But what the continuity of US policy shows (a continuity only slightly masked by this latest institutional change of tack) is the inevitable damage caused when political conflict is translated into the language of rights. Such a translation only aggravates the all too human tendency to identify one’s own cause with the highest moral principles.

Because this danger is so obvious, the UN was created to evacuate such issues from international discourse. Its charter and practices until the 1980s were based on the principles of state sovereignty and non-interference in the internal affairs of states, not on human rights. Resolutions by the General Assembly, in 1965 and in 1981 on the inadmissibility of intervention in the internal affairs of states, and in 1970 on friendly relations between states, when non-interference was reiterated, were all totally unambiguous. In 1981, for instance, the General Assembly recalled “the duty of a State to refrain from the exploitation and the distortion of human rights issues as a means of interference in the internal affairs of States”.

These resolutions were bolstered by rulings by the International Court of Justice, the supreme judicial body of the UN system, for instance in a famous 1986 case opposing the USA and Nicaragua where the former was supporting the Contra rebels. The ICJ ruled that “the Court cannot contemplate the creation of a new rule opening up a right of intervention by one State against another on the ground that the latter has opted for some particular ideology or political system” and that “in any event, while the United States might form its own appraisal of the situation as to respect for human rights in Nicaragua, the use of force could not be the appropriate method to monitor or ensure such respect.”

These principles came under sustained assault in the post-Cold War period and they are now considered to have been buried under the Western doctrines of humanitarian intervention and “the right to protect”. Their burial reflects a far deeper problem, which constitutes the biggest threat to the international order today: the almost psychotic inability of the US leadership to engage with other international actors on the basis of that complexity which is inherent in states having a different point of view, a different culture and a different value system.

Instead, the US remains in hock to what was originally known as the “Open Door” school of US diplomacy of William Appleman Williams (1921-1990), which holds that America will be safe in the world only when the world becomes like America and is dominated by it.

Stated forcefully by George W. Bush and by Donald Trump’s administration in the 2018 National Defense Strategy, this doctrine was also endorsed by Clinton and Obama.

Many years after Clinton’s Kosovo war, Obama’s Vice-President, Joe Biden, proudly told his Albanian taxi driver outside the US military base in Kosovo, where the soldiers were of different ethnic backgrounds: “There’s America. Until you figure out how to live together like we do, you will never, never, never make it.”

Between Trump and his nemesis Biden, therefore, there is no essential difference – and that is a major problem for the rest of us.

John Laughland is a historian and specialist in international affairs.

June 20, 2018 Posted by | Progressive Hypocrite, Timeless or most popular, War Crimes | , , | 1 Comment

Here’s Why Pro-Migrant Protesters Changed US Policy While Anti-War Protesters Didn’t End America’s Recent Wars

By Adam Garrie | EurasiaFuture | June 20, 2018

Donald Trump has just signed an executive order reversing the Clinton era policy of separating children from their illegal migrant parents at the southern border of the United States. While this policy has been in operation since the 1990s, it was only in the last month that it caught the attention of American media and the political class.

Ultimately, the issue is one for the leaders of the US to decide and under immense media and political pressure, the US President has taken the matter into his own hands and changed a policy based entirely on a public pressure campaign rather than his own apparent line of thinking which favours an increasingly tough border policy.

What this proves is that on issues effecting the well being of humans who happen not to be US citizens, public pressure campaigns can in fact get policies changed, especially in an election year. When one thinks that George W. Bush illegally invaded Iraq just over a year before facing re-election while Tony Blair did the same only two short years before facing the UK electorate, it beggars belief that anti-war campaigns have been so ineffective at reversing policies that slaughter millions, destroy entire regions and all the while unleashing the most barbaric forms of terrorism in places where there once was little or none.

Irrespective of one’s views of America’s border policy, even those who believe it to be inhumane must admit that it did not result in the deaths, terrorism and destruction of the US led wars on Yugoslavia, Iraq, Libya and the hybrid war against Syria.

While millions of people marched against the Iraq war throughout the world in 2003, far more than have gone on demonstrations against the controversial child separation policy of the US border authorities, it nevertheless had no effect on US policy in the Middle East. In fact, the amount of wars and number of troops committed across the Middle East by the US and its partners only increased since 2003.

Why then did the anti-war marches fail while the pro-migrant movement accomplished its goal? The reason is simple. While masses of protesters can control the streets and non-corporate air waves, the corporate media in the United States that is willing to take a side on issues like migration is unwilling, unable or not wanting to go up against the pro-war factions of Washington. The same is true even for most so-called independent minded politicians in the US, almost all of whom lose their independent streak when it comes to war, with retired Congressman Dr. Ron Paul, his son Senator Rand Paul and Senator Bernie Sanders being exceptions in the wilderness.

While corporate media is losing viewership at a rapid pace among the wider public and the young in particular, among the policy making class, there is still a tendency to literally view the world through a bubble and refuse to look at non-corporate or non-western originated media for any other purpose than to mock, sneer and at times, attempt to censor.

It is because of this, that the kind of invisible connection between the narrative of mainstream media pundits and politicians can lead to meaningful policy change while this is not the case when it comes to anti-war issues that the mainstream media in the US tends to either ignore or berate (before ignoring).

In this sense, the political-media complex has worked to insure that the issues that are important to the boardrooms of CNN and MSNBC are those which are important to the politicians who can then pressure a reluctant President to change a policy he previously appeared to support.

It is only when politicians begin to take non-corporate western media sources at face value rather than look for conspiracies (aka Russian meddling) which do not exist, that the growing number of people opposed to war might be able to affect policy change. Until then, the anti-war voices of millions will be ignored, while the loud but comparatively quieter thousands of voices raised against America’s border policies will be heeded.

The solution for anti-war protesters is to not give up but to shame the part-time humanitarians who cried at the thought of strangers in a strange land being separated from their families, yet who say nothing when families living in their ancestral homes are separated from one another by the force of a bomb – never to be reunited. If you think that America’s long standing border policy was inhumane but do not feel similar things towards the families America’s military slaughters in their own home – then you do not have a heart after all… but you probably have a high definition television.

June 20, 2018 Posted by | Mainstream Media, Warmongering, Militarism, Progressive Hypocrite, War Crimes | , | 1 Comment

U.S. News Media Can’t Talk About Adelson Foreign Policy

By Eli Clifton | LobeLog | June 19, 2018

Over the past month, two mainstream news outlets have done in-depth reporting on the grip that Sheldon Adelson, President Donald Trump’s and the GOP’s biggest donor, holds over U.S. foreign policy in the Middle East. LobeLog has closely followed this important story, so it’s heartening to see The Guardian and CBC highlighting the apparent capture of U.S. foreign-policy decision-making by a billionaire donor.

But there’s a noticeable gap in the coverage of this topic. U.S. news outlets, which routinely “follow the money” when it comes to domestic issues, are almost completely avoiding any reporting on the clear link between Adelson’s campaign contributions and the administration’s pursuit of policies that hew closely to positions espoused by the billionaire casino magnate.

Adelson’s influence over the Trump administration’s foreign policy is hard to overlook. The Las Vegas-based billionaire, and currently the fourteenth wealthiest American, is outspoken about his political views. He has suggested using nuclear weapons against Iran, declared the “purpose of the existence of Palestinians is to destroy Israel,” promoted John Bolton for a senior foreign-policy post, directly lobbied Trump about moving the U.S. embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. Newt Gingrich, himself a recipient of Adelson’s financial support during his failed 2012 presidential big, said that his benefactor’s “central value” is Israel.

Mainstream Media Coverage

Deep in Adam Entous’s excellent New Yorker feature in this week’s issue, he briefly grapples with Adelson’s influence on U.S. Mideast policy. Entous writes:

No Republican candidate can easily afford to ignore him. Adelson considered Obama an enemy of Israel, and, in the 2012 election, he and his wife, Miriam, contributed at least ninety-three million dollars to groups supporting the G.O.P. Officials in the U.S. and Israel said that they learned from American Jewish leaders that Adelson had vowed to spend “whatever it takes” to prevent Obama from securing a peace agreement while in office.

Entous then returns to the thesis of his article—that Israel, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates are manipulating Trump’s foreign policy team. But the brief acknowledgement that one donor has leveraged legal political spending to control the foreign policy positions of the Republican Party deserves more attention.

Indeed, there’s ample evidence that Trump, who received $35 million in outside election spending from Adelson and his wife, Miriam, listens to what his biggest campaign supporter has to say.

Before winning the GOP’s nomination, Trump quipped that Adelson was seeking to “mold [Marco Rubio] into the perfect little puppet,” but he quickly came around and echoed Adelson’s hawkish positions on the Israeli-Palestinian peace process and moving the U.S. embassy to Jerusalem after winning the Republican nomination and securing Adelson’s financial backing.

Politico reported that the most threatening line in Trump’s October UN speech—that he would cancel Washington’s participation in the JCPOA if Congress and U.S. allies did not bend to his efforts to renegotiate it—came directly from John Bolton, now Trump’s national security advisor, and with the full weight of Trump’s biggest donor. The hawkish language was not in the original text prepared by Trump’s staff. Politico reported:

The line was added to Trump’s speech after Bolton, despite Kelly’s recent edict [restricting Bolton’s access to Trump], reached the president by phone on Thursday afternoon from Las Vegas, where Bolton was visiting with Republican megadonor Sheldon Adelson. Bolton urged Trump to include a line in his remarks noting that he reserved the right to scrap the agreement entirely, according to two sources familiar with the conversation.

That was the only mention of Adelson’s influence in the article.

The day after Trump’s violation of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) last month, Adelson visited Trump in the White House. The week before, Adelson cut a $30 million check to the Congressional Leadership Fund, a super PAC exclusively dedicated to securing a GOP majority in the House of Representatives. That contribution made Adelson, again, the biggest contributor to the Republican Party in an election cycle.

Politico broke the story of the $30 million contribution but didn’t mention Adelson’s possible foreign policy motivations. In the mainstream news media, only McClatchy’s Peter Stone, reporting on May 14, dedicated an entire article to the obvious influence that the president’s biggest donor appears to hold over U.S. foreign policy. He wrote:

These are heady days for casino billionaire and megadonor Sheldon Adelson.

A passionate and hawkish advocate for Israel with close ties to its prime minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, Adelson was in Jerusalem today for a celebration of the U.S. embassy’s relocation to that city, a longstanding priority for the mogul. Similarly, Adelson had pushed hard for President Donald Trump to pull out of the Iran nuclear deal, which happened last week.

Stone went on to report on Adelson’s White House meeting the day after the JCPOA announcement.

And The New York Times only briefly touched on this issue in a February 23 article on the moving of the U.S. embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem and Adelson’s controversial offer to pay for the new facility:

For years, Mr. Adelson, a Las Vegas casino mogul, has pushed the United States government to move its embassy to Jerusalem, the disputed capital that both Israelis and Palestinians claim as their own. With an estimated net worth of $40 billion, Mr. Adelson donated heavily to Mr. Trump’s campaign and gave $5 million to the committee organizing the president’s inauguration festivities, the largest such contribution ever.

Progressive Media Coverage

Progressive and left-leaning media have been equally silent about the special interest control over U.S. foreign policy decision-making.

Two days after Trump violated the JCPOA, MSNBC’s Chris Hayes devoted more than eight minutes to the $30 million contribution in which his panelists decried the outsized role of money in politics. Two minutes into the segment, they speculated about how much Adelson’s heirs might benefit from estate-tax reductions in the Republican tax bill, suggesting that Adelson’s contribution might be an investment in influencing tax policy in ways that would personally benefit him and his family.

At the end of the segment, with only two minutes remaining, Hayes said:

There’s also a foreign policy component here. The rich donors might have different foreign policy priorities. Sheldon Adelson has very intense foreign policy priorities as relate to Israel. You can imagine people having intense foreign policy priorities as to Brexit or NATO or Ukraine… You get a US foreign policy where you have to wonder what is guiding it.

None of Hayes’s panelists engaged with that explanation and Hayes did not return to it.

Vox’s Matt Yglesias also speculated about Adelson’s desire to reduce the estate tax and concluded:

Throw in the benefits of the other tax cut provisions and Adelson’s interest in maintaining a business-friendly National Labor Relations Board and the investment is very small and sensible. The same goes for even richer people like the Koch brothers, who are planning to spend even larger sums in the midterms.

There’s no actual evidence that Adelson feels particularly strongly about the estate tax. He hasn’t given public remarks about the estate tax, and he hasn’t contributed large sums of money to think tanks with an anti-estate tax agenda. In other words, Hayes and Yglesias are guessing about Adelson’s motives without acknowledging what Adelson publicly talks about as motivating his political and civic engagement.

ThinkProgress, a site for which I used to work, offers another insight into the progressive media landscape’s refusal to acknowledge Adelson’s capture of Washington’s Mideast policy. Adelson’s name hasn’t appeared in a TP headline for over two years. Housed at the Democratic-Party-aligned Center for American Progress, TP doesn’t shy away from writing about certain other right-wing donors. But it hasn’t put the Republican Party’s biggest donor’s name in a headline since five months before the 2016 presidential election.

By comparison, “Koch” has appeared in 20 ThinkProgress headlines in the same two-year span.

Foreign Media Coverage

It’s not as if mainstream, let alone left-wing, journalists and pundits don’t understand what’s happening. Half of the CBC’s May 20 segment is taken up by Wendy Mesley’s interview with Ken Vogel, a money-in-politics reporter for The New York Times.

Mesley: Why is Adelson so driven on these causes, these mostly Israeli causes?

Vogel: Yeah, he is a cause donor. It’s been really his animating political issue behind his donations for some time. People I’ve talked to trace it to his marriage to his wife Miriam Adelson in the early 1990s. Her parents fled the Holocaust, ended up in Israel where she was raised and so far that reason and others he’s really become a leading donor and a leading figure in this hawkish pro-Israel conservative sort of circle that is so influential in American politics.

Later, Vogel added:

I think what [Adelson] does is act as an enforcer. People are scared, to some extent, to cross him because they fear that if they anger him and fall out of favor with him that his funding, not only funding from him will dry up, funding from this larger circle of Jewish-American donors who give a lot of money in Republican politics.

Vogel’s description of Adelson’s influence was succinct and clearly backed up by Adelson’s own statements, his choice of causes and candidates to support, and the policy positions embraced by candidates who owe their political careers to Adelson’s largesse.

But this explanation was delivered to a Canadian television network instead of The New York Times.

Phil Weiss of the Mondoweiss blog writes that acknowledging Adelson’s motives and influence “smacks of assertions of outsize Jewish influence that were a hallmark of murderous, anti-Semitic campaigns in Europe.” Indeed, Weiss is accurate that discussing Adelson’s influence can often feed anti-Semitic tropes with no basis in facts.

If he’s correct, journalists are actively censoring themselves from discussing how an individual donor, whose views are shared by only a small minority of Jewish Americans, is advocating for foreign policy positions that isolate the U.S. from allies, such as those that supported the agreement to curb Iran’s nuclear program, in favor of a hawkish U.S. agenda in the Middle East.

At the bare minimum, news outlets are expected to report on the facts. In this case, the facts are that U.S. foreign policy is starting to look an awful lot like what Sheldon Adelson has encouraged over the past several years.

Perhaps it’s all a coincidence and Adelson is really engaged in a stealth campaign to reduce the estate tax and pass his $40-billion-plus fortune on to his children.

It makes more sense, however, to take the GOP’s biggest donor at his word. Foreign news outlets have done just that. But the U.S. media appears incapable of wrestling with the new role money is playing in steering Washington’s policy abroad.

June 20, 2018 Posted by | Corruption, Deception, Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Mainstream Media, Warmongering, Progressive Hypocrite, Wars for Israel | , , | 1 Comment

South Korea wants railroad link to Russia through North Korea

RT | June 20, 2018

Seoul, Moscow and Pyongyang can implement several major trilateral infrastructure and energy projects if stability is reached on the Korean peninsula, according to South Korean President Moon Jae-in.

One such project could be a railway that will be able deliver goods from Russia to South Korea through North Korea. “Once the Trans-Korean Main Line is built, it may be connected to the Trans-Siberian Railway. In this case, it will be possible to deliver goods from South Korea to Europe, which would be economically beneficial not only to South and North Korea but to Russia as well,” Moon Jae-in said in an interview with Russian media ahead of his state visit to Moscow.

A gas pipeline coming from Russia to North Korea to be extended to the South is another possibility, he said. “We can also build a gas pipeline via North Korea, so that not only South Korea will receive Russian gas but we will also be able to deliver it to Japan,” the South Korean president said.

The project to unite the Korean Peninsula with a gas pipeline has been discussed for a long time, but official talks started in 2011. The negotiations were frozen after relations between Seoul and Pyongyang deteriorated. Last week, Russian energy major Gazprom announced it resumed talks with Seoul over the construction of a gas pipeline connecting Russia with North and South Korea.

The countries could also connect their electricity grids, Moon Jae-in said. “We can also establish a powerline that would allow us to receive electricity from Russia. It could also be delivered not only to South and North Korea but also to Japan.”

June 20, 2018 Posted by | Economics | , | 1 Comment