Aletho News


Australia’s Shameful Gift to Netanyahu

By Jeremy Salt | American Herald Tribune | December 17, 2018

Australia and Israel are white settler states, established violently over the heads of the indigenous people, without the benefit of any treaty arrangement. ‘A land without people for a people without land’ was the Zionist lie. ‘Terra nullius’ was the Australian white settler equivalent.

Australian aboriginal ownership was collective and traditional. Palestinian ownership was collective, traditional and individual but in both cases, the land was stolen. How can the foundations of any state established on stolen land be said to be legal? What will white Australians say if someone comes along and takes ‘their’ country from them? ‘You can’t do this to us’?

The essential differences between Israel and Australia are numbers and hinterland. The land the white settlers called Australia was inhabited in the late 18th century by about half a million people. They had lived in this island continent and its small heart-shaped island off the southern coast, Tasmania, for more than 60,000 years, making the oldest recorded civilizations in the Near East look like newborns. They had their own languages, traditions, art, and oral history, the ‘dreaming,’ which is the most wondrous telling of the experiences of their ancestors.

But they were not numerous. They had no written laws and – most importantly – no modern weaponry. Killed, driven off their land and stricken by the diseases the white settlers brought with them, they were soon decimated. There was no-one to whom they could turn for help, no sympathetic similar civilization living nearby that could spring to their assistance. They were all on their own.

Contrast this with the Palestinians. Their land was also taken from them but they lived according to written laws and contracts which Europeans could understand even if they violated them. They were not sufficiently well-armed to defend themselves against a colonial-settler minority backed by outside governments but they were far more numerous than the settlers, 90 percent of the population in 1920, even after 40 years of Zionist colonization, and still two-thirds of the population at the time of the war of conquest in 1948.

By 2018 the Israeli population stood at 8.4 million, of which number 6.1 million (about 75 percent) is Jewish and mostly Zionist. The Palestinian world population of about 12 million includes about 4.4 million Palestinians living in the West Bank, East Jerusalem or Gaza and about 1.4 million within Israel’s pre-1967 borders. Within a few years, the Palestinian population between the Mediterranean and the River Jordan is expected to surpass the Jewish population.

These numbers aside, as part of an Arab-Islamic civilization with a rich history, the Palestinians also have the support of a vast hinterland. The population of the Arab world stands at about 420 million. The world Muslim population is about 1.8 billion. Corrupt and undemocratic Arab governments may collaborate with Israel but the people are behind the Palestinians, as are Muslims everywhere as well as Christians and those of no particular religious or ideological affiliation who know right from wrong and, as a matter of conscience, must support the Palestinians.

In the face of these demographics, Israel’s continuing war against the Palestinians would seem to be suicidal. Palestine as an issue is not going to go away. In the long term, this is a war Israel cannot win. It holds Palestine by force, not by right, law or morality. All three are on the side of the Palestinians and not on the side of an Israeli state which continues the illegal settlement of their land.

No plan, no UN resolution gave Israel any right to drive the Palestinians from their homes and out of their homeland. No resolution gave the Zionists any sovereign right to Jerusalem. It was a Palestinian city which, after the dissolution of the Ottoman Empire, should have remained the property of the Palestinian people, overwhelmingly Muslim and Christian, in their own state or as part of a Syrian state.  Instead, their land and the right to choose their future was taken from them.

Here are some relevant land ownership figures, compiled in 1945 by the British mandatory authorities (one dunam is the equivalent of 1000 sq. meters or about 0.245 of an acre):

Jerusalem district (Hebron, Jerusalem, Ramallah):

Arab ownership – 3,3993,001 dunums.

Jewish ownership – 39, 679 acres.

In the Jerusalem region, the ‘Arabs’ (mainly Palestinian Muslims and Christians) owned 1,326, 571 dunums against 33,401 dunums owned by Jews. In 1946 the UN produced a map showing that 62 percent of the Jerusalem district was ‘Arab’ and only 38 percent Jewish, despite the heavy Zionist settlement.

While the demographics of Jerusalem city showed a Jewish majority, as many incoming Jews preferred to live in cities rather than work on the land, most properties even in West Jerusalem (about 70 percent) were Palestinian-owned in 1948.

Almost all of the east – the old city – was. The fine stone buildings, the walls, the cobbled streets and the arches were designed and built over the centuries by Muslim and Christian Palestinians. They were part of the booty that fell to the Zionists when the city was taken over, first installment 1948 and second 1967, with the ethnic cleansing of the Palestinian population continuing until the present day.

In law, all Jerusalem – not just the eastern sector – is an occupied city. It is an Israeli city, Israel’s ‘capital’, only according to the occupier’s law, which in fact is not a law at all but a gross violation of international law.

Yet, with two of the world’s most populous Muslim countries, Indonesia and Malaysia, not far away and objecting loudly, the Australian Prime Minister, Scott Morrison, has announced his government’s recognition of West Jerusalem as Israel’s capital and its recognition of East Jerusalem as the Palestinian capital when the time comes. He was speaking in Sydney at the Zionist think tank, the Lowy Institute, started by, and named after, Frank Lowy, a billionaire businessman of Czech origin who, as a member of the Haganah, helped to ethnically cleanse Palestine in the war of 1948 before migrating to another ethnically cleansed country, Australia, in the early 1950s.

Of course, Zionism never had any intention of sharing Palestine, let alone sharing Jerusalem as the capital of two states. Morrison has pledged to recognize East Jerusalem as the capital of a Palestinian state when the time comes. He must know that Israel is determined to make sure the time will never come. Israel, of course, is only partly happy because Australia is only-half recognizing its claim to Jerusalem.

Had the indigenous Australian people been more numerous, had they had the weapons to defend themselves and had they the support of a hinterland willing to support their resistance to white settlement, Australia could well have been driven openly in the direction of Israel or apartheid South Africa.  Israel is now pursuing the same goal that white settler Australia managed to achieve, the reduction of the indigenous population to an insignificant minority, whose rights are covered up with tokenism, as exemplified in the ‘sorry’ movement and the verbal acknowledgment of traditional land ownership at every conference or workshop, at a time rural aboriginal communities are treated with the same neglect as before. Out of sight, out of mind.

Why did Morrison do this? Out of his Christian religious convictions?  (He worships at a Pentecostal church in Sydney, which boasts of its adherents speaking in tongues when being baptized. Morrison has denied ever speaking in tongues himself, even though it would clearly be good practice for anyone planning a political career).

Does Morrison have some idea that the ‘Jewish vote’ will swing the next federal election his way? Did not the Wentworth byelection in 2018, lost by his government, show him that while there is a strong and influential Zionist lobby in Australia, there is no such thing as a Jewish vote, but individual Jewish voters, who may support Israel, but not Netanyahu’s Israel, and might see the Morrison decision as inflammatory and not helpful in the long term to anyone, including Israeli Jews.

Like Israel, Australia began life as a colonial settler state. Its Foreign Minister, H.V. Evatt, played a significant role in imposing Israel on Palestine in 1948. There have been exceptions, but by and large, all Australian governments have given open-ended support to Israel ever since. Their criticisms of its frequently vicious behavior never amount to more than a mild slap on the wrist, delivered for propaganda purposes.

It is no wonder that in Malaysia and Indonesia, Australia is widely regarded as a post-colonial remnant, still dependent on distant countries, first Britain and now the US, and still unable to pluck up the courage to carve out a genuinely independent future.

When Israel refuses to abide by international law, on Jerusalem, on the West Bank, on Gaza, on the occupied Golan Heights, on the return of the Palestinian people to their homeland and on the laws of war, why give Netanyahu the gift of recognizing even the western half of an occupied city as his capital?

Almost everyone writing on Australian politics seems to believe that Morrison will be out of government after the federal elections in 2019. Bill Shorten, an ALP (Australian Labor Party) machine man all his political life, has criticized Morrison over Jerusalem, but is he just playing politics, scoring points, or when he takes over as Prime Minister, will he rescind this unnecessary and provocative decision?

December 19, 2018 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Illegal Occupation, Timeless or most popular | , , , , | 1 Comment

‘Striking images to help public relate’: UK Integrity Initiative’s post-Skripal psyop leaked

RT | December 19, 2018

The UK government-funded ‘Integrity Initiative’ (II) actively monitored social media and suggested influencing foreign journalists with “pro-UK messaging” in the aftermath of the poisoning of Sergei Skripal, latest leaks claim.

The shady II – a project of the Institute for Statecraft (IfS) – bills itself as a non-partisan, disinformation-busting charity. Yet, according to leaked documents by a group calling itself Anonymous, it ran a smear campaign at home and also meddled in the internal affairs of EU countries.

The latest – third – batch of leaks says that IfS also sprung into action after the poisoning of ex-double agent Sergei Skripal and his daughter earlier this year. London blamed the attack on Moscow, while Kremlin said the accusations lacked evidence and were part of smear campaign against Russia.

In the aftermath of the case, IfS suggested a “live monitoring” project to determine which “key influencers” and journalists were “friendly” toward the UK and which were not, in order to be able to provide an “early warning” of any “threat to HMG” (Her Majesty’s Government).

A proposal document for the Skripal project said that the social media monitoring service known as ‘SENTINEL’ and an investigative platform called ‘SEEKER’ would be used to identify accounts that were deemed “part of a Russian government media strategy.”

The latest leak also includes a number of short country reports on the Skripal monitoring project from across Europe including from Bosnia Herzegovina, Montenegro and the Baltic states. A more lengthy report was produced for Italy, where the Integrity Initiative claimed that “the risk of Russian influence” remains “high.”

The reason was that that doubts had been raised about the UK government’s narrative on the Skripal story, even in “high quality” Italian newspapers. This was blamed on the fact that not enough Italians consider Russia a threat and therefore, people there reacted to the news with “emotions” rather than rational analysis, it is claimed. According to the docs, the way to remedy this, was to direct “an effective, discrete and articulated information campaign” toward Italian influencers in politics and media.

A document on “ramping up” IfS’s work suggests that posting “striking images” of Skripal in hospital might “help the public relate” more to the story. Notably, while the IfS denigrated the “emotional” reaction from Italians that did not go in their favor, they were not so reserved with the British public.

The same document argues that the IfS could potentially be“anonymous funders” of Patreon projects where users are creating high-quality anti-Russian content — and could even “commission” such content itself. IfS should “use public figures in our networks to approach celebrities” and other “social influencers” to spread the message, it says, giving former footballer Gary Lineker as an example.

The IfS could also help expand “recent efforts to develop media literacy in rural USA” by using the Skripal affair as a “vivid and timely case-study,” the document says, without elaborating on its US efforts. Another stated goal would be to “find ways” to remove content from RT and Ruptly news agency from anywhere it was found within mainstream media.

Earlier leaks claim that the group has already led a successful social media campaign to prevent the appointment of Colonel Pedro Banos as director of Spain’s Department of Homeland Security due to his so-called “pro-Russian” views. The government-funded group also launched a domestic smear campaign against Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn in an effort to brand him as a tool of the Kremlin.

Read more:

Do it CIA style: What you need to know about latest leak on UK-funded psyop

December 19, 2018 Posted by | Fake News, Mainstream Media, Warmongering, Russophobia | , | Leave a comment

UK and US PSYOP Collusion

By Margaret Kimberly | Black Agenda Report | December 19, 2018

Russiagate hysteria is an international conspiracy, with British spooks spreading lies on three continents. Now Black Americans are slandered as “dupes” of Moscow.

For more than two years the corporate media, elite think tanks, NATO leaders, and most Democratic Party politicians have insisted that Russia interferes in American and European elections. The charge doesn’t withstand scrutiny but the lies are repeated. There is proof that surveillance state meddling in the affairs of democratic nations is real, but Russia isn’t the culprit. It is the United Kingdom and the United States who lead in skullduggery and meddling with the rights they claim to uphold.

Thanks to the Anonymous hacker community the work of the Integrity Initiative  has been exposed to the public. The Integrity Initiative is a British “charity” founded in 2015. Its mission is to “bring to the attention of politicians, policy-makers, opinion leaders and other interested parties the threat posed by Russia to democratic institutions in the United Kingdom, across Europe and North America.” That mission is suspect in and of itself, a phony trope meant to cover up its own imperialist wrong doing. The Integrity Initiative is an arm of the British government and has received more than $2 million in funding from the British Foreign Office and Defense department. It has also raised money from NATO, Facebook and rightwing foundations.

The Integrity Initiative is a means of undermining the sovereignty of the British people by manipulating them with lies. It engaged in numerous efforts to libel Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn and prevent him from ever being elected prime minister. Corbyn has been accused of Soviet era espionage, anti-Semitism and anything else his enemies choose to use against him. Academics and writers who spoke out against UK involvement in attacks on Syria were likewise targeted by The Timesand other influential British media. The reporters involved were part of this Integrity Initiative campaign. The attacks are consistent and are obviously coordinated at a very high level.

Integrity Initiative director Christopher Donnelly  is a former member of the British Army Intelligence Corps. He also helped to create the U.S. Army’s Foreign Military Studies Office at Fort Leavenworth, and served as an advisor to several Secretaries General at NATO. After the NATO instigated coup against the elected Ukrainian government Donnelly recommended placing mines in the Sevastopol harbor, an obvious provocation.

When Integrity Initiative isn’t planning to start wars it plots to interfere in the affairs of other countries through orchestrated “clusters” of journalists and academics. The Spanish cluster  quashed the appointment of a new defense secretary through the use of a coordinated social media campaign. They were also involved in subverting the Catalan independence vote.

Clusters are operating not just in the UK and Spain but in France, Germany, Greece, Italy, Montenegro, Netherlands, Norway and Lithuania. After Julian Assange revealed the extent of interference in Spain the cluster targeted the Ecuadorean government to end his asylum.

There is evidence that the Integrity Initiative sent an operative into the Bernie Sanders 2016 campaign for the Democratic Party presidential nomination. An Englishman named Simon Bracey-Lane  got much media attention for volunteering in the Sanders Iowa caucus campaign. Bracey-Lane is now a research fellow at the Institute for Statecraft, the Integrity Initiative’s parent company. There was foreign meddling in the 2016 election but it came from British spooks like Christopher Steele and undercover operatives, not Russian agents.

The only Americans aware of the Integrity Initiative are those who use social media to gather information outside of the corporate media bubble. The New York Times, Washington Post, CNN and MSNBC haven’t covered this story. They repeat what Robert Mueller says about crooked and amateurish Trump allies who cheat on taxes or pay off porn stars. They repeat flimsy evidence of Russian collusion while America’s allies in the UK cheat their own citizens of their rights. It is miraculous when the people are able to find out anything they need to know.

These miracles occur when Wikileaks or Anonymous steal secrets the powerful want to keep hidden. Americans wouldn’t know about the existence of the FBI Counter Intelligence Program if a group of activists hadn’t stolen the documentary evidence. That is why the leakers and the hackers deserve support from anyone who wants to live in a truly democratic society.

While British spies operate covertly, their American counterparts work in the open as they make a profit off of their disinformation campaigns. The story of a Russian troll farm swaying Americans to vote for Donald Trump was relegated to old news but it was resurrected by a Silicon Valley surveillance state operation.

New Knowledge  is a tech firm created with venture capital cash and founders who are former operatives from the National Security Agency, U.S. military, and State Department. New Knowledge was hired by the Senate Intelligence Committee and tasked with finding out the extent of supposed Russian influence on social media.

As expected, they produced a report claiming not only that the Russians meddled in the election but that African Americans were the most targeted group . This is a rehash of the discredited story that click bait  ad selling schemes amounted to espionage. It also confuses with claims of millions of online interactions  that are a drop in the bucket in comparison with American political sites.

Of course phony concern for black people is the last refuge of many scoundrels. Now that there has been no evidence presented of Russian government collusion with Donald Trump, the rehashing will be more frequent. The Democratic Party and the corporate media cannot let this story die. They depend upon it and they must keep covering up their own lies. Russiagate is the gift that keeps on giving.

Hillary Clinton, the Democratic National Committee and their establishment supporters are responsible for the Donald Trump presidency. They were more concerned with covering up her scandals, attracting Republican voters and raising corporate money than they were about getting out the black vote that they always rely upon for victory. Despite raising more than $1 billion they presided over one of the worst debacles in American political history. Any outrage about the Trump presidency must be pointed in their direction.

No one should fear terms like conspiracy theory when there are proven conspiracies operating at the highest levels of government and media. There are no coincidences when certain people suddenly come under attack. There is every reason to be paranoid because collusion is quite real. But the stories we’re told about it are the most fake news of all.

December 19, 2018 Posted by | Deception, Fake News, Mainstream Media, Warmongering, Russophobia | , , , , | 1 Comment

UK Report Falsely Claims Russia Went All-Out Trying to Help Elect Trump

By Stephen Lendman | December 18, 2018

The claim is the Big Lie that won’t die – no matter how often accusations and allegations are debunked. Imagine the following:

If endless political, media, think tank, fake reports, and other efforts spent trying to prove nonexistent Russian US 2016 presidential election meddling went for promoting world peace, social justice, and other positive actions, imagine how much better the state of America and world might be today.

Oxford University’s Computational Propaganda Research Project (COMPROP) claims to investigate “how tools like social media bots are used to manipulate public opinion by amplifying or repressing political content, disinformation, hate speech, and junk news.”

A report it prepared for the Senate Intelligence Committee yet to be released, perhaps in cahoots with the Theresa May regime and anti-Trump undemocratic Dems, falsely claims the Kremlin used social media platforms to help Trump triumph over Hillary.

Exhaustive House and Senate investigations since January 2017 found no evidence linking Trump or his team with Russia – nor anything suggesting Kremlin election meddling.

Special council Mueller’s probe since May 2017 fared no better – nor the US intelligence community might of the DNI, FBI, CIA, NSA, and other US agencies.

US sophisticated investigatory powers, including countless millions of dollars spent, failed to find credible evidence of Russian US election meddling, nor an improper or illegal Trump team connection to Moscow – because none of the above exists no matter how long probes continue.

Did Oxford University’s COMPROP find a way to uncover information that eluded America’s best and brightest, or is its report the latest example of Russia bashing based on nothing but invented rubbish?

It reportedly analyzed material provided to the Senate Intelligence Committee, its report to be released in days.

The neocon/CIA-connected Washington Post said it saw a draft of the report, leaked so the broadsheet could bash Russia more than already, other US-led Western media to follow suit on their own.

According to WaPo, COMPROP’s  data “were provided by Facebook, Twitter and Google and covered several years up to mid-2017, when the social media companies cracked down on the known Russian accounts,” adding:

“The report, which also analyzed data separately provided to House Intelligence Committee members, contains no information” beyond the mid-2017 period.

COMPROP claims “all of the messaging (information it analyzed) sought to benefit the Republican party,” adding:

“Trump is mentioned most in campaigns targeting conservatives and right-wing voters, where the messaging encouraged these groups to support his campaign.”

“The main groups that could challenge Trump were then provided messaging that sought to confuse, distract and ultimately discourage members from voting.”

According to WaPo, “(t)he report offers the latest evidence that Russian agents sought to help Trump win the White House” – despite no credible evidence proving it, an indisputable fact.

It’s unclear what information Facebook, Twitter and Google provided to COMPROP. Last week, Google CEO Sundar Pichai revealed what he called the “full extent” of possible (not proved) Russian meddling in the run-up to the 2016 presidential election.

In House Judiciary Committee testimony, he said “we undertook a very thorough investigation, and, in 2016, we now know that there were two main ad accounts linked to Russia which advertised on Google for about $4,700 in advertising.”

According to the Center for Responsive Politics, the total amount spent by candidates for all offices in US 2016 elections was around $6.5 billion (with a “B”), including for primary races.

The amount spent by 2016 presidential aspirants was $2.4 billion, including for primaries. In all races, Republicans and Dems each spent around 48% of the total amount (96% combined).

Trump spent $398 million compared to Hillary’s $768 million, nearly double DLT’s amount.

What possible impact could $4,700 have – even 10x over on all social media platforms – compared to billions of dollars spent by candidates?

Facebook explained that 56% of ads linked to Russia on its platform appeared after the US 2016 presidential election.

Alleged Internet Research Agency Russian hackers spent $100,000 from mid-2015 to mid-2017 on 3,000 ads. One-fourth of them were never shown to anyone.

Only around 1,000 ads appeared during the presidential campaign. Many ads expressed no preference for any candidate.

Facebook said US presidential candidates spent hundreds of millions of dollars in online  political advertising – “1000x more than any problematic ads we’ve found” – admitting virtually no evidence of Russian use of the platform for improper meddling.

Asked to examine 450 accounts Facebook flagged as fake, no evidence connecting them to Russia was found, just groundless suspicions.

Twitter’s vice president Colin Crowell explained “(w)e have not found accounts associated with this activity to have obvious Russian origin but some of the accounts appear to have been automated.”

Twitter found and suspended 22 suspicious accounts – once again, nothing connecting them to Russia.

Another 179 were suspended for terms of service violations – none of the 201 accounts registered as advertisers.

Twitter found over 3.2 million automated accounts, providing no evidence of any connected to the Kremlin.

RT, RT America and RT en Espanol spent $274,100 for 1,823 US ads – none supporting one US presidential aspirant over another.

The bottom line conclusion is indisputable. No Russia US meddling occurred online or in any other way. No evidence suggests it. Claims otherwise are spurious.

Yet they persist endlessly, the latest from the dubious COMPROP report – rubbish masquerading as credible analysis.

A previous article said Russiagate should be called Hillarygate. With considerable media help, she, her campaign, and the DNC cooked the books for her to be Dem standard bearer.

She and the DNC hired former MI6 spy Christopher Steele to produce a dodgy dossier on Trump – filled with unverified accusations and allegations, an effort with no credibility.

No Russiagate witch hunt investigation was warranted. No special counsel should have been appointed. The whole ugly business should be terminated straightaway.

All the allegations and accusations about Russian election meddling were and continue to be bald-faced Big Lies.

Not a shred of credible evidence indicates otherwise.

Stephen Lendman’s newest book as editor and contributor is titled Flashpoint in Ukraine: How the US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III.

December 19, 2018 Posted by | Deception, Fake News, Mainstream Media, Warmongering, Russophobia | , , | Leave a comment

Revenge of the spies: Flynn case shows extent of anti-Trump #Resistance

By Nebojsa Malic | RT | December 19, 2018

President Donald Trump’s ill-fated first national security adviser Michael Flynn will twist in the wind for another three months or more, before he can face a sentence for getting caught in a FBI ambush while doing his job.

Flynn was supposed to be sentenced on Tuesday, ending the year-long legal saga that destroyed his reputation, nearly bankrupted him, and even endangered his family. Then, in a bizarre last-minute twist, his lawyers asked for a delay. The next status hearing will be in March, with the actual sentencing who knows when.

At one point in the hearing, Judge Emmett Sullivan urged Flynn to reconsider his guilty plea, telling him that the violation he was admitting to amounted to treason – only to walk back the comments minutes later. The media, predictably, gave far more coverage to the original statement than the retraction. It’s the perfect example of the collective hysteria that has followed Flynn’s case from the very beginning.

Despite the publication of FBI documents showing that agents interviewing Flynn in January 2017 did not think he misled them, intentionally or otherwise, about the content of his conversations with Russian ambassador to the US Sergey Kislyak, Flynn chose to stand by his guilty plea from a year ago. His reasons for this are a mystery. What is not a mystery, however, is how the people involved in railroading Flynn are the same ones implicated in the institutional #Resistance to the Trump administration.

In the orgy of sensationalist reporting that has gripped the US mainstream media for the past two years, Flynn’s actual transgression has been lost to the din of shouting “treason” and “RUSSIA.” What he pleaded guilty to is lying to FBI investigators about his calls with Kislyak. The contacts themselves were right and proper, mind you: it was literally his job to reach out to foreign diplomats on behalf of the president-elect. So, why was the FBI even probing them?

That is where things get interesting. Somebody from the Obama administration – we still don’t know who – “unmasked” Flynn’s name from the classified NSA intercepts of his conversations with the Russian ambassador. This somehow got to Acting Attorney General Sally Yates, who testified that she reached out to the White House with concerns about Flynn being blackmailed. It also somehow got to the Washington Post. There was talk of the Logan Act, an obscure 200-year-old law never used to prosecute anyone.

Within days of Trump’s inauguration, two FBI agents came to interview Flynn about his conversations with Kislyak. They told him he didn’t need a lawyer present. One of the agents was Peter Strzok – who would later be revealed as rabidly anti-Trump, thanks to text exchanges with FBI lawyer Lisa Page uncovered by the DOJ inspector-general.

James Comey, the FBI director at the time and now a hero of the anti-Trump #Resistance, testified on Monday that he sent Strzok to the White House without informing Yates, out of political considerations. It’s not the first time Comey has broken with procedure and assumed prerogatives of his superiors, mind you – his public exoneration of Hillary Clinton comes to mind – as the DOJ IG concluded in his report.

Hounded by the media coverage of the NSA leaks and the FBI interview, Flynn resigned on February 14, 2017. That was not the end of his troubles, but only the beginning. Months later, special counsel Robert Mueller charged him with lying to Strzok and his colleague, in order to compel his cooperation with the “Russiagate” probe.

Mueller, let’s recall, was appointed by Deputy AG Rod Rosenstein after Comey was fired by Trump – on the basis of Rosenstein’s memo, no less – in May 2017, because Democrats insisted that sacking the FBI chief amid an ongoing counterintelligence investigation amounted to obstruction of justice. You can’t make this stuff up!

Yet despite two years and near-infinite resources, the best both Comey and Mueller could come up with to tie Trump to Russia has been the “salacious and unverified” (in Comey’s own words) Steele Dossier – a collection of claims bought and paid for by Clinton’s campaign, using the Democratic Party and its law firm Perkins Coie as cutouts.

Christopher Steele, a former (?) British spy, recently said in a legal filing that the dossier was commissioned so Clinton could challenge the legitimacy of the 2016 election. Before you object that Clinton never brought a court challenge, ask yourself: hasn’t she? What about Flynn, or George Papadopoulos, or Paul Manafort, or Michael Cohen, or the entire “Russiagate” probe for that matter? What about the frenzied, breathless reporting over the past two years, heralding the impending end of Donald J. Trump over each and every non-development?

Back in January 2017, top Democrat in the Senate Chuck Schumer warned Trump he should not cross the US intelligence community, as “they have six ways from Sunday at getting back at you.”

Sure enough, within days the spies released their infamous assessment claiming Russian meddling in the 2016 presidential election, providing a framework for “Russiagate” investigations. Since then, former CIA Director John Brennan has established himself as an outspoken foe of Trump, to the point where even former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper found it problematic.

Trump’s critics have routinely accused him of being a dictator, a despot and a tyrant, a threat to “our democracy,” whatever that means. Yet in what dictatorship would a despot tolerate an ongoing vendetta by the opposition against himself and his allies, and the rampant abuse of intelligence, judiciary and law enforcement? Trump must the most incompetent tyrant ever!

What’s worse, the Washington establishment claims to stand for justice, rule of law, and democracy while trampling any semblance of them into the mud – as shown by the case of General Flynn – and continuing to blame Russia, of course.

December 19, 2018 Posted by | Russophobia | , , | Leave a comment

The Year of Putin-Nazi Paranoia

By CJ Hopkins | Consent Factory | December 19, 2018

As my regular readers will probably recall, according to my personal, pseudo-Chinese zodiac, 2017 was “The Year of the Headless Liberal Chicken.” This year, having given it considerable thought, and having consulted the I Ching, and assorted other oracles, I’m designating 2018 “The Year of Putin-Nazi Paranoia.”

Not that 2017 wasn’t already paranoid. It was. It was completely paranoid, and otherwise clinically batshit crazy. But 2018 has been batshit crazier. It started out with the Internet companies that control the flow of information that most of us now perceive as “reality” launching an all-out War on Dissent, purportedly to protect the public from “divisive” and “confusing” content, and other forms of Russian “influencing.”

Twitter started sending out scary emails warning customers that there was “reason to believe” that they had “followed,” “retweeted,” or “liked the content of” accounts “connected to a propaganda effort by a Russian government-linked organization.” Facebook launched its own Ministry of Truth, manned by “a dedicated counter-terrorism team” of “former intelligence and law-enforcement officials” (also known as The Atlantic Council, NATO’s unofficial propaganda wing). Google stepped up its covert deranking of insufficiently Russia-hating and other “non-authoritative” websites.

This Orwellian corporate censorship campaign was enthusiastically welcomed by liberals and other Russia-and-Trump-obsessives, who by this time were already completely convinced that secret Russian Facebook agents were conspiring to transform the Western masses into zombified, Russia-loving neo-Nazis by means of some sort of irresistible Putin-Nazi hypno-technology that would melt their brains to oatmeal the second they clicked on one of those dancing cat GIFs.

But the paranoia was just getting started. By the Spring, professional Putin-Naziologists were issuing warnings explaining that anyone using words like “globalist,” “globalism,” or “global capitalism” was an anti-Semite. There was no such thing as “globalism,” they told us. “Globalist” was just Nazi codespeak for “JEW!” Moreover, anyone criticizing “the media,” or mentioning “banks,” “Wall Street,” or “Hollywood,” or, God help you, making fun of “George Soros,” was clearly a Russia-loving, Sieg-heiling Nazi.

Meanwhile, in London, Blairites were busy combing through six year-old Facebook posts in an effort to prove that Jeremy Corbyn had transformed the British Labour Party into his personal Putin-Nazi death cult. The Guardian published over one hundred articles smearing Corbyn as an anti-Semite and “linking” Labour to anti-Semitism. The BBC jacked up the Russia paranoia, doctoring Corbyn’s hat on TV to make it appear more insidiously Slavic. Owen Jones sprang to Corbyn’s defense, explaining that, yes, the Labour Party was a disgusting hive of anti-Semites, but they were doing their utmost to root out the Nazis, ban all criticism of the IDF, and reverse the mass exodus of Jews from London.

All this was happening in the wake of the notorious Novichok Porridge and Perfume Attacks, allegedly perpetrated by two totally incompetent, pot-smoking, prostitute-banging “assassins” that Putin personally dispatched to Salisbury to miserably fail to take out their target and then waltz around getting photographed by every CCTV camera in Great Britain. According to the corporate media, Putin tried to cover the crimes of these Jason Bourne-like GRU assassins by ordering his network of Putin-Nazi Twitter bots to flood the Internet with disinformation. Sky News captured and mercilessly interrogated one of these alleged “Twitter bots,” who it turned out was just a feisty British pensioner by the name of Ian, or at least that’s what Putin wants us to believe!

Back in America, millions of liberals and other Russia-and-Trump-obsessives were awaiting the Putin-Nazi Apocalypse, which despite the predictions of Resistance pundits had still, by the Summer, failed to materialize. The corporate media were speculating that Putin’s latest “secret scheme” was for Trump to destroy the Atlantic alliance by arriving late for the G7 meeting. Or maybe Putin’s secret scheme was to order Trump to sadistically lock up a bunch of migrants in metal cages, exactly as Obama had done before him … but these were special Nazi cages! And Trump was separating mothers and children, which, as General Michael Hayden reminded us, was more or less exactly the same as Auschwitz! Paul Krugman had apparently lost it, and was running around the offices of The New York Times shrieking that “America as we know it is finished!” Soros had been smuggled back into Europe to single-handedly thwart the Putin-Nazi plot to “dominate the West,” which he planned to do by canceling the Brexit (which Putin had obviously orchestrated) and overthrowing the elected government of Italy (which, according to Soros, was a Putin-Nazi front).

As if that wasn’t paranoia-inducing enough, suddenly, Trump flew off to Helisnki to personally meet with the Devil Himself. The neoliberal establishment went totally apeshit. A columnist for The New York Times predicted that Trump, Putin, Le Pen, the AfD, and other such Nazis were secretly forming something called “the Alliance of Authoritarian and Reactionary States,” and intended to disband the European Union, and NATO, and impose international martial law and start ethnically cleansing the West of migrants. That, or Trump and Putin were simply using the summit as cover to attend some Nazi-equestrian homosexual orgy, which The Times took pains to illustrate by creating a little animated film depicting Trump and Putin as lovers. In any event, Jonathan Chait was certain that Trump had been a “Russian intelligence asset” since at least as early as 1987, and was going to Helsinki to “meet his handler.”

In the wake of the summit, the neoliberal Resistance, like some multi-headed mythical creature in the throes of acute amphetamine psychosis, started spastically jabbering about “treason” and “traitors,” and more or less demanding that Trump be tried, and taken out and shot on the White House lawn. A frenzy of neo-McCarthyism followed. Liberals started accusing people of being “traitorous agents of Trump and Moscow,” and openly calling for a CIA coup, because we were “facing a national security emergency!” A devastating Russian cyber-attack was due to begin at any moment. National Intelligence Director Dan Coats personally assured the Associated Press that the little “Imminent Russia Attack” lights he had on his desk were “blinking red.”

Into this maelstrom of monomania boldly slunk the Charlottesville Nazis, who had resolved to reenact their infamous national white supremacist tikki torch conclave right across the street from the White House this year. The Resistance and Antifa had been promoting this event as the long anticipated Putin-Nazi uprising, and Kristallnacht II, and other such nonsense, so it was a bit of a letdown when only twenty or thirty rather timid Nazis turned up. It felt like maybe the Great Nazi Panic of 2018 was finally over.

But no, of course it wasn’t over. The Nazis had just gone underground. Weeks later, right there on national television, a Jewish-Mexican-American Nazi was spotted transmitting secret Nazi hand signals to her Nazi co-conspirators. One of them, a U.S. Coast Guard member, then relayed the secret Nazi signal to … well, it wasn’t entirely clear, perhaps the Underground Putin-Nazi Navy, which was steaming toward the Florida coast hidden in the eye of Hurricane Florence.

By the Autumn, with the midterm elections fast approaching, the Putin-Nazi terrorists finally struck. It soon became clear that those secret hand signs were just parts of a much larger Trumpian conspiracy to “embolden” a couple of totally psychotic wackos to unleash their hatred on the public. Wacko Number One accomplished this by mailing a series of non-exploding explosive devices to various prominent members of the neoliberal Resistance. Wacko Number Two stormed into a synagogue in Pittsburgh and murdered a lot of people. While the corporate media were unable to prove that Trump, Putin, or possibly Jeremy Corbyn, had personally “emboldened” these wackos, clearly, they had been “emboldened” by somebody, and thus were definitely domestic Putin-Nazi “terrorists,” and not just mentally disturbed individuals … like all the other mentally-disturbed individuals who go around murdering people all the time.

In November, at last, the tide began to turn. Despite the relentlesschaos campaign to undermine faith in American democracy” that the Russian bots and Nazis were waging, the Democrats managed to win back the House and rescue America from “the brink of fascism.” Apparently, the War on Dissent was working, because the millions of Black people that the Russians had brainwashed into not voting for Clinton in 2016 with those Jesus-doesn’t-like-masturbation memes had all miraculously been deprogrammed.

Liberals celebrated by singing hymns to Special Prosecutor Robert Mueller and compiling lists of people to subpoena to testify before congressional committees in what will someday be known as “the Hitlergate Hearings.” The New York Times even published a “roadmap” that Mueller and his team can follow to “send incriminating evidence directly to Congress,” thus protecting this “evidence” from the Justice Department, which is totally infested with Russians and Nazis!

But it’s not quite time for liberals to break out the vuvuzelas and Trump effigies yet … or to let up on the paranoia. The Putin-Nazi menace is still out there! The Internet is still literally crawling with all sorts of deviant, division sowing content! And now the Russian bots have brainwashed the French into staging these unruly Yellow Vest protests, and the Putin-Nazis have “weaponized” humor, and the economy, and religion, and Brexit, and Wikileaks, and pretty much everything else you can imagine. So this is no time to switch off the television, and log off the Internet, and start thinking critically … or to forget for one moment that THE NAZIS ARE COMING, and that A DEVASTATING RUSSIAN ATTACK IS IMMINENT!

So here’s wishing my Russia-and-Trump-obsessed readers a merry, teeth-clenching, anus-puckering Christmas and a somewhat mentally-healthier New Year! Me, I’m looking forward to discovering how batshit crazy things can get … I have a feeling we ain’t seen nothing yet.

Photo: Film Forum

DISCLAIMER: The preceding essay is entirely the work of our in-house satirist and self-appointed political pundit, CJ Hopkins, and does not reflect the views and opinions of the Consent Factory, Inc., its staff, or any of its agents, subsidiaries, or assigns. If, for whatever inexplicable reason, you appreciate Mr. Hopkins’ work and would like to support it, please go to his Patreon page (where you can contribute as little $1 per month), or send your contribution to his PayPal account, so that maybe he’ll stop coming around our offices trying to hit our staff up for money. Alternatively, you could purchase his satirical dystopian novel, Zone 23, which we understand is pretty gosh darn funny, or any of his subversive stage plays, which won some awards in Great Britain and Australia. If you do not appreciate Mr. Hopkins’ work and would like to write him an abusive email, please feel free to contact him directly.

December 19, 2018 Posted by | Mainstream Media, Warmongering, Progressive Hypocrite, Russophobia | | Leave a comment

Is Canada Huawei Arrest Attempt to Sabotage Trump Xi Talks?

By F. William Engdahl – New Eastern Outlook – 19.12.2018

The arrest of the CFO of the China’s largest telecoms equipment company, Huawei, carries hallmarks of deep state or behind-the-scenes sabotage designed to rupture recent progress between US President Trump and China President Xi Jinping on strategic issues. Here are some elements of the case that smack of insider sabotage from the US side, with complicity of Five Eyes member Canada.

After months of trade tariff clashes between USA and China, US President Donald Trump met with China President Xi Jinping during the Buenos Aires G-20 Summit. There the two issued a positive joint statement in which it was stated that the US on January 1 will impose a “cease-fire” and freeze current tariffs at 10% on the $200 billion of Chinese imports to the US, not raising it to 25% as scheduled. For his part, Xi agreed to resume buying US soybeans and other agriculture and energy products to cut the trade imbalance. Most interesting and little-discussed in western media coverage, on the US request, Xi also agreed to list the controversial chemical Fentanyl as a Controlled Substance, meaning that people selling Fentanyl to the United States will be subject to China’s maximum penalty under the law.

As well, they agreed to immediately begin negotiations on key US issues including forced technology transfer, intellectual property protection, non-tariff barriers, cyber intrusions and cyber theft, services and agriculture to be completed within 90 days or face resumption of the planned 25% tariff raise.

The offer by Xi to control Fentanyl, one of the most deadly synthetic drugs that has caused tens of thousands of deaths in the USA, was notable. According to U.S. law enforcement and drug investigators, China is the main supplier of fentanyl to the United States. There criminal organizations mix the Fentanyl powder with heroin. Also according to the US DEA, China companies ship Fentanyl to key points in Canada and Mexico. From Mexico it is usually repackaged by the Mexican drug cartels and smuggled into the US.

Canada Surprise?

In other words China had agreed to open strategic issues in bilateral relations that could have major positive implications for resolving the trade conflicts and other issues not public. On December 5 in Vancouver Canadian authorities arrested Meng Wanzhou, the CFO and board member of China’s Huawei Technologies Co Ltd. She is also daughter of the founder and CEO.

The arrest, reportedly on charges of illegal activities in regard to US sanctions on Iran, is unprecedented. In August the US President signed an order banning Huawei hardware in US government communications networks on grounds of national security. Huawei is at the heart of China’s vigorous effort to dominate the emerging 5G communications networks. The company is today the world’s second largest smartphone maker after Samsung and ahead of Apple and the world’s largest manufacturer of telecom network equipment with $92 billion in sales. US President Trump in August authorized a ban on the company’s hardware in US government networks, citing national security concerns – particularly in relation to the rollout of 5G networks.

That there have been growing conflicts between China and Washington over Huawei is clear. What is bizarre about the Canadian arrest of Meng, now on bail and awaiting extradition to the US, is the fact that it took place on the same day Trump and Xi in Buenos Aires were engaged in critical trade talks. According to Trump National Security adviser, John Bolton, the President was not informed beforehand of the Canadian arrest plan.

Whatever the case with many charges of hidden espionage devices embedded in Huawei technology, or Iran sanctions violations, the Canadian arrest of CFO Meng Wanzhou is having explosive consequences inside China. The CCP People’s Daily, in an editorial, wrote on December 9, “To treat a Chinese citizen like a serious criminal, to roughly trample their basic human rights, and to dishonor their dignity, how is this the method of a civilized country? How can this not make people furious?”

In an unusual step, in the midst of the fray, Donald Trump announced that if necessary to conclude positive China trade talks, he would be ready to intervene with the US Justice Department into the controversy. On December 12 in a Reuters interview Trump stated, “Whatever’s good for this country, I would do. If I think it’s good for what will be certainly the largest trade deal ever made – which is a very important thing – what’s good for national security – I would certainly intervene if I thought it was necessary.”

Beijing Response

So far there are more unanswered questions than answers. However, it appears that Beijing is being extremely careful not to allow the affront–ordinarily a huge face loss for the Chinese to have one of their national champion company senior people treated so–to disrupt relations with the Trump Administration. Rather than retaliate by going after the many top US executives in China, it arrested a former Canadian diplomat in Beijing on suspicion of “endangering national security,” as well as a Canadian entrepreneur with business ties to North Korea.

The connections of that former Canadian diplomat are more than interesting.

Michael Kovrig previously worked as a Canadian diplomat in Beijing, Hong Kong and the United Nations. Chinese national security police took him into custody on December 10 in Beijing. Kovrig is officially listed as “North East Asia adviser” for something called the International Crisis Group. 

The International Crisis Group is an NGO with a knack for being involved in key conflict zones such as Myanmar. The magazine Third World Quarterly in a peer-reviewed article in 2014 accused the ICG of “manufacturing” crises.

It was founded by Trump nemesis and Hillary Clinton supporter, George Soros. The Trustees of Kovrig’s employer, the International Crisis Group, include some very notable names. One is of course founder and funder, George Soros. Another trustee is a Canadian billionaire, Frank Guistra. Make a note of the name as it is likely to appear in the news in coming weeks as details emerge of FBI and other US investigations into illegal or shady dealings of the tax-exempt Clinton Foundation. Frank Giustra President & CEO, Fiore Financial Corporation, is a big donor to the Clinton Foundation where he also sits on the board.

His Giustra Foundation works with Elevate Social Businesses, formerly Clinton Giustra Enterprise Partnership, the International Crisis Group, Global Refugee Sponsorship Initiative, and other partners. Guistra’s UrAsia Energy Ltd. appears in the investigation of the infamous Uranium One scandal during Hillary Clinton’s term as Secretary of State, which some believe is the real “Russiagate” scandal. Soon we will know more as litigation in the US proceeds.

In sum, it appears that Xi Jinping has chosen a highly interesting target for retaliation in the Canadian arrest of Huawei’s CFO. To date it appears that, if it were the aim of certain dark networks in US and Canadian governments and intelligence to sabotage any constructive USA-China dialogue by the unprecedented arrest of the Huawei senior executive, it may have backfired. The next weeks will tell more.

December 19, 2018 Posted by | Deception, Economics | , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Putin warns US against misadventures

(Russia’s President Vladimir Putin addresses an extended meeting of the Russian Defence Ministry Board in the National Defence Management Centre in Moscow, Dec 18, 2018)
By M. K. BHADRAKUMAR | Indian Punchline | December 19, 2018

The Russian President Vladimir Putin’s address to an expanded meeting of the Defence Ministry Board in Moscow on December 18 stands out as a tour d’horizon of the global strategic balance. The speech must be seen against the backdrop of the free fall in US-Russia relations, build-up of NATO infrastructure on Russia’s western borders and, in particular, the Trump administration’s statements about the US withdrawing from the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty of 1987.

Broadly, Putin’s message is in three directions:

The modernization of Russian armed forces has been most successful and the combat readiness of Russian military is at an all-time high level;

Russia has developed new hypersonic weapons of immense destructive power, which are going into serial production for deployment with the strategic nuclear forces to which the US simply has no answer;

Russia is determined to ensure that any US attempts to tilt the strategic balance in its favor will be effectively countered.

Putin disclosed that the share of modern arms in Russia’s “nuclear triad” (air, navy and ground forces) is already at an impressive level of 82 percent. He implied that all in all, the US is punching above its weight: “These weapons (unique state-of-the-art weapons such as the Avangard missile system, Sarmat missile, Kinzhal hypersonic air-launched ballistic missile, Peresvet combat laser weapons, etc.) will multiply the potential of our army and navy, thus reliably and absolutely ensuring Russia’s security for decades ahead. These weapons are consolidating the balance of forces and, thus, international stability. I hope our new systems will provide food for thought to those who are used to militaristic and aggressive rhetoric.”

The main thrust of Putin’s speech was on the US plans to withdraw from the INF Treaty. He warmed, “Such a step will have the most negative consequences and will noticeably weaken regional and global security. In fact, in the long term, it may result in the degradation and even collapse of the entire architecture of arms control and non-proliferation of weapons of mass destruction… In the event the United States breaks the treaty – I have already mentioned this publicly and I believe it is important to state it once again directly for this audience – we will be forced to take additional measures to strengthen our security.”

Putin starkly forewarned that Russia’s newly developed Kinzhal hypersonic missiles (at a speed in excess of Mach 10 with an intermediate range of 2000 kilometers) which are presently deployed on Mig-31 aircraft can as well be modified “and put… on the ground, if need be.”

In geopolitical terms, Putin drew the bottom line that Moscow will not blink and Russian military prowess is indomitable. Quite obviously, the stern Russian warning comes at a time when the US is pushing the European allies to impose more sanctions against Russia and is threatening to increase its military presence in the Black Sea following the Kerch Strait incident last month. Tensions are rising over Ukraine, which lies historically in the First Circle of Russian national defence. Russia has reportedly deployed Sukhoi Su-27 and SU-30 fighter jets to the Belbek air base in Crimea. Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said on Monday, presumably on the basis of intelligence inputs available with Moscow, that Ukraine may stage provocative moves militarily on the border of Crimea later this month and that the Ukrainian Armed Forces have amassed around 12,000 troops and a great amount of equipment on the contact line with the insurgent region of Donbass.

Lavrov disclosed that instructors from the US, Britain and other countries are actively helping the Ukrainian build-up, while a US drone is constantly flying over the region. (Xinhua ) With a near-certainty that the chances of pro-American Petro Poroshenko winning a renewed mandate in the March presidential elections being virtually zero, a casus belli would suit the US to prepare the ground for Ukraine’s post-haste induction into the NATO and the EU. Putin only briefly touched on Ukraine, saying the conflict in the southeastern region “continued unabated.”

Significantly, in his address on Wednesday, Putin made a pointed reference to China while commending the Vostok-2018 military exercises. He said the maneuvers contributed to the “substantial upgrades” in the level of operational and combat training of Russian armed forces and in displaying their ability to “promptly move forces and equipment” over 7000 kms “and to quickly reinforce units in major strategic areas wherever necessary.” Putin then added that it was “important” to note that units from China “also acted under the general plan, in single formation with our troops.” He came close to taking note of what western analysts call the “functional military alliance” between Russia and China.

Russia’s defence budget of $46 billion compares with the Pentagon’s $725 billion budget. What emerges is that instead of getting drawn into a debilitating arms race that will be a strain on resources, Russia will focus on developing the strategic capability to inflict such colossal losses and destruction on the West, including the US, which will deter the latter from launching militaristic adventures targeting Russia. Thus, Putin gave topmost priority to “further strengthen the combat potential of the strategic nuclear forces.” He stressed the importance of quickly transitioning to weapons with enhanced capabilities that overcome US’ missile defence systems and, in particular, the production and supply of the Avangard global range missile systems to the armed forces.

The commander of Russia’s Strategic Missile Force Commander Colonel-General Sergei Karakayev said in an interview with Krasnaya Zvezda newspaper on Monday that the first Avangard hypersonic missile systems will enter combat duty in 2019 at the Dombarovsky missile division based in the Orenburg Region in the south Urals. According to a TASS report, the Avangard is a strategic intercontinental ballistic missile system equipped with a hypersonic glide vehicle capable of flying at hypersonic speed in the dense layers of the atmosphere, maneuvering by its flight path and its altitude and breaching any anti-missile defense.

December 19, 2018 Posted by | Timeless or most popular | , | 1 Comment

Turkey and Russia Push Towards a Resolution in Syria

By Tom LUONGO | Strategic Culture Foundation | 19.12.2018

Turkish-US relations are terrible and deteriorating by the day despite bromides to the contrary. Actions speak louder than words. And that has been all President Trump seems capable of anymore, words not actions.

Since the beginning of l’affair Khashoggi Turkey has been extracting concession after concession from the US as the Trump administration tries to salvage its soon-to-be-unveiled Middle East peace plan.

The latest concession may be the biggest. There’s a report out now that the Trump administration is readying the extradition of cleric Fethulah Gulen, who President Erdogan believes was behind the coup attempt against him in July of 2016.

The US has protected Gulen well beyond any reasonable measure for someone not in their pay so Erdogan’s claims ring true enough. I’ve always thought he was a US intelligence asset and that the US were the ones truly behind the coup attempt.

And since the Trump administration has been desperate to get the Turks to stop leaking details of the Khashoggi murder, Erdogan has pretty much had a free hand to conduct business as he’s seen fit for the past two-plus months.

Whether the US ever returns Gulen to Ankara or not is actually irrelevant; keeping it a sore spot open is its biggest value while Turkey prepares an assault against US-backed YPG forces in Manbij, Syria.

It helps raise Turkey’s position with the other countries involved in the Astana peace process for Syria while keeping Trump, his foreign policy mental midgets and Saudi Arabia on their collective back foot.

Turkey has grown increasingly restless about the US’s lack of movement in turning Manbij over to them. And have now unleashed attacks on Kurdish forces in Northern Iraq to hamper them further.

All of this is making the US presence in eastern Syria more untenable over time while the Saudis struggle with falling oil prices and no longer want to pay the bill for the US’s proxy war.

Don’t kid yourself, the US is struggling to keep its financial pressure up on Iran.

If these things weren’t enough Turkish Prime Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said recently that Ankara was now willing to work with Syrian President Bashar al-Assad if he survives “democratic and credible” elections. This is rich coming from Turkey, but whatever.

The importance of this statement, however, cannot be overstated. Turkey was one of the major partners in the mission to destroy Syria. And now they have joined with Russia, Iran and China in negotiating the peace process.

They have gone from “Assad must go!” to “Assad can stay.” It is an admission that the US plan for balkanization of Syria will eventually fail and that their best bet is putting maximum pressure on the US to give up its regional plans.

Russia, of course, stands behind Turkey in this and they themselves are now upping the costs on the US and the Israelis. Because, it is now Russian policy to assist Syrian Arab Army forces in proportional retaliation against Israeli aggression in Syrian territory, according to Elijah Magnier.

No longer will the Russians stand aside and allow Israel a free hand over bombing what it says are Hezbollah and Iranian targets within Syria. The SAA will now strike back with a proportional response.

An airport for an airport, as it were.

What started as a State Department operation to install a puppet government and sow chaos in Syria under Hillary Clinton then became one to drain Russian and Iranian resources by wasting their time under John Kerry.

Today, that US/Israeli/Saudi strategy has been turned on its head.

It is now the US and the Saudis that are feeling the pinch of yet another quagmire without end. Moreover, the Israeli security situation is now worse than it was before all of this started in the first place. This necessitates an even more unhinged response from Washington which it cannot defend to the American people as to why we need to stay in Syria forever.

None of this is what President Trump campaigned on. None of this is what candidate and citizen Trump argued for.

The real war of attrition was never about physical resources and money. It was always about time. The Iranians and Russians have played for time. Time brought out the truth about the Syrian invasion. It exposed the real causes of the conflict.

The hope now for the US is that financial pressure will get Iran to knuckle under. But, look at what is happening. Oil prices are in freefall as the global economy slows down thanks to debt saturation, a rising dollar and increasing opposition in the West to neoliberalism and globalism.

Trump whines about this because it upsets his mercantilist plans to corner the energy markets while weaponizing the use of the dollar.

EU technocrats who fancy themselves the inheritors of a waning US empire, bristle under Trump’s plans. They will build an alternative payment vehicle to buy goods and services from sanctioned entities. This is about much more than Iranian oil.

So, while Trump, Bolton, Mnuchin and Pompeo, the Four Horsemen of the Foreign Policy Apocalypse, think they are winning this war on commerce, all they are doing is falling into the very trap Putin, Xi and Rouhani have set for them.

Again, they playing for time. The dollar is the US’s strength and also its Achilles’ heel. And if you are playing for time it is to build alternative channels for trade, oil, gas and whatever else the US deems against its interests without need for dollars.

Trump’s energy dominance plan is as transparent as his narcissism. More likely the sanctions exemptions for buying Iranian oil will be extended in May because he can’t have a global crisis be his fault as he prepares for re-election in 2020.

But, that’s exactly what he’s setting up.

So, now back to Syria.

Those who were set up to be scapegoats – namely Qatar and Turkey – washed their hands of the operation quickly, made deals with Russian President Vladimir Putin and charted their own independent paths. By the time the truth about US involvement in Syria was exposed they were long gone and only the real perpetrators left holding onto poor positions and worse arguments.

All Trump can do now is openly admit that we’re there on behalf of Israel and Saudi Arabia to get Iran. That’s it. He can sell that to part of his base. But, not enough of them to win re-election.

His peace plan is DOA. It died along with the 15 Russian airmen on that IL-20 back in August. I’ll be surprised if it is ever actually announced. That one event set us on this path. It permanently poisoned Russian/Israeli relations as Netanyahu overplayed his hand assisting NATO in a needless provocation which nearly sparked a wider war.

Reports are that Putin doesn’t return his phone calls and now dictates to Bibi what happens next. This also tells me Putin now has control over his Israeli fifth columnists within the Kremlin otherwise this order would never have been issued and made public.

Now Netanyahu is hemmed in on all sides and the Saudis are political pawns between the warring factions of the US government – Trump who wants an Arab NATO and the Deep State that wants him on a platter. Their benefactor, Trump, is in an increasingly untenable position who will soon be forced to choose between hot war and impeachment.

Meanwhile, Iran, Turkey and Russia will continue to bleed out the US forces in Syria while sanctions prove to be increasingly less effective. Simultaneously, the Astana process moves forward with all groups trying to reach out to each other around the sclerotic reach of the US and put an end to this shameful period of US foreign policy insanity.

December 19, 2018 Posted by | Economics, Wars for Israel | , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Trump says ‘we have defeated ISIS’ as US starts withdrawal from Syria

RT | December 19, 2018

Donald Trump has tweeted that ISIS has been defeated as White House announced that US has started pulling out its troops from Syria.

The US has begun the withdrawal of its troops from Syria, the White House said in a statement, adding, however, that the move does not mean an end of the military campaign in the war-torn country but marks a “new phase” in the fight against Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS).

“These victories over ISIS in Syria do not signal the end of the Global Coalition or its campaign. We have started returning United States troops home as we transition to the next phase of this campaign,” White House spokeswoman Sarah Sanders said.

She also partly echoed an earlier tweet by President Donald Trump, who also said that IS terrorists were defeated while calling the group “the only reason for [the US troops] being there [in Syria].”

According to some reports, the withdrawal might primarily affect the US troops on the ground working together with an alliance of Arab and Kurdish militias, known as the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF). The US has a total of 2,000 servicemen there, who are particularly involved in training the local militias. The news come as the SDF are reportedly on the verge of retaking one of the terrorist group’s last major strongholds – the town of Hajin, located east of the Euphrates.

The pullout is expected to take between 60 and 100 days, according to reports citing US officials. Additional reports suggested that all US State Department personnel would also be evacuated from Syria within 24 hours.

However, even after the withdrawal, the US would still maintain a sizeable presence in the neighboring Iraq, with some 5,200 troops stationed just across the Syrian border. The aircraft of the US-led coalition – the primary tool of Washington and its allies in the Syrian conflict – will also still be able to continue their air raids flying out of Qatar and other bases in the Middle East.

Washington’s decision also comes days after the Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan urged the US to make its Kurdish allies withdraw from the town of Manbij, located west of the Euphrates, in the northeastern Syria.

Ankara considers Syrian Kurdish paramilitaries as an extension of the Turkey-based anti-government guerrillas and brands the Syrian Kurdish YPG militia as terrorists. Erdogan threatened to order his troops to storm the town if the US fails to fulfill his demand. Last week, he announced plans to launch a military operation in the Kurdish areas “within days.”

In early December, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff General Joseph Dunford complained that the US lacks trained local fighters on the ground to “provide stability” to Syria.

Trump made an announcement that the US would be leaving Syria “very soon” back in March and never officially walked it back.

December 19, 2018 Posted by | Illegal Occupation | , , | 1 Comment

Moscow Rejects Israeli Complaint over Haniyeh Invitation: You’re Also Talking to Hamas

Al-Manar | December 19, 2018

Israeli ambassador to Moscow Gary Koren recently sent a sharp protest to Russian officials over the invitation the Russian Foreign Ministry sent to the Head of Hamas political bureau, Ismail Haniyeh in Moscow, Israeli Channel 10 reported.

Senior Israeli officials were quoted as confirming that a similar protest was also transferred to the Russian Embassy in the Zionist entity.

Moscow sent the invitation to Haniyeh at the end of November, just two weeks after the end of the round of fighting in Gaza.

Hamas delegation is expected to arrive at the end of the month to Moscow after the arrival of Palestinian Foreign Minister Riad al-Maliki.

Senior Russian officials say they rejected Israeli criticism of the invitation of the Hamas delegation and replied to the Israeli diplomats: “Why do you come to us with complaints – you’re talking to Hamas yourself,” according to Israeli Channel 10.

Two weeks ago, Russia voted against the US proposal to denounce Hamas at the UN General Assembly. Tel Aviv responded yesterday when it voted for a US condemnation of the Russian annexation of the Crimea.

December 19, 2018 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism | , , , | Leave a comment

US preparing for complete military withdrawal from Syria – reports

RT | December 19, 2018

Washington is planning to “rapidly” pull out all its troops from Syria, various media outlets have reported, citing US officials

The decision was allegedly taken by President Donald Trump himself, who had repeatedly expressed his intent to get out of the Arab Republic earlier. However, the Pentagon apparently opposes the move. The potential withdrawal would upend assumptions about the long-term US presence in the war-ravaged country, which was particularly backed by the Defense Secretary James Mattis.

The schedule, as well as the details of the alleged withdrawal, are yet unknown. While the Pentagon and the White House did not issue any official statements on the issue, Trump said in a Twitter post that Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS/ISIL), which he called “the only reason for [the US troops] being there [in Syria],” has been defeted, apparently signaling that there was no reason for the US to stay on the ground in Syria any longer.

According to some reports, the withdrawal might primarily affect the US troops on the ground working together with an alliance of Arab and Kurdish militias, known as the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF). The US has a total of 2,000 servicemen there, who are particularly involved in training the local militias. The news come as the SDF are reportedly on the verge of retaking one of the terrorist group’s last major strongholds – the town of Hajin, located east of the Euphrates.

December 19, 2018 Posted by | Illegal Occupation, Militarism | , | 1 Comment