Aletho News


FM Zarif: Iran’s Reprisal Attack in Compliance with UN Charter

Fars News Agency | January 8, 2020

TEHRAN – Iran’s Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said his country’s Wednesday missile attacks on Ein Al-Assad falls under the rules of the UN Charter, reminding that Iran has hit the airbase that has been used as the launchpad for assassinating Lieutenant General Qassem Soleimani.

“Iran took and concluded proportionate measures in self-defense under Article 51 of UN Charter targeting [the] base from which cowardly armed attack against our citizens and senior officials were launched,” Zarif wrote on his tweeter page on Wednesday morning.

The top diplomat said his nation “does not seek escalation or war, but will defend ourselves against any aggression”.

The IRGC Aerospace Force started heavy ballistic missile attacks on US Ein Al-Assad airbase in Southwestern Iraq near the border with Syria and a US operated airbase in Erbil in retaliation for the assassination of IRGC Qods Force Commander Lieutenant General Qassem Soleimani.

Ein Al-Assad is an airbase with a 4km runway at 188m altitude from sea levels, which is the main and the largest US airbase in Iraq.

The second IRGC reprisal attack targeted a US military base near Erbil airport in Iraqi Kurdistan Region in the second leg of “Martyr Soleimani” reprisal operation.

All flights have been cancelled at Erbil airport.

The IRGC issued a statement immediately after the attacks, declaring that it has fired tens of ground-to-ground missiles at “the airbase occupied by the terrorist and aggressive army of the United States known as Ein Al-Assad” in reprisal for the martyrdom of IRGC Qods Force Commaner Lieutenant General Qassem Soleimani.

The IRGC warned the US to avoid retaliating the Wednesday attack or else “it will face a more painful and crushing response”.

The IRGC Statement also warned “all the US allied states where the terrorist army has a base, any territory that becomes the origin of any hostile and aggressive action against the Islamic Republic of Iran in any way will be targeted”.

“We believe that the Zionist regime by no means stands aside from the criminal US regime in these crimes.”

The IRGC also called on the American nation to pressure the White House to pull their troops out of the region to avoid further damage and not allow the US rulers to endanger the lives of their military men through increasing hatred.

All Iranian underground missile towns are on alert.

The missile attack came hours before the body of General Soleimani was buried.

Lieutenant General Soleimani was martyred in a targeted assassination attack by the US drones at Baghdad International Airport early on Friday morning.

The airstrike also martyred Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis, deputy commander of Iraq’s Popular Mobilization Forces (PMF), or Hashad al-Shaabi. The two were martyred in an American airstrike that targeted their vehicle on the road to the airport.

Five Iranian and five Iraqi military personnel were martyred by missiles fired by the US drone at Baghdad International Airport.

The attack came amid tensions that started with a US attack on PMF units that killed 28 Iraqi popular forces. A day later, Iraqi people attacked the US embassy in Baghdad.

The targeted assassination attack represents a dramatic escalation by the US toward Iran after months of tensions. The tensions are rooted in Trump’s decision in May 2018 to withdraw the US from Iran’s nuclear deal with world powers, struck under his predecessor.

January 7, 2020 Posted by | Illegal Occupation | , , | 5 Comments

Iran Strikes Back! Daniel McAdams talks to RT

Ron Paul Institute | January 7, 2020

Iran fires missiles at at least two US bases in Iraq! What is next? RPI Director Daniel McAdams in an extensive interview as the dramatic events of tonight unfold of Iranian retaliation in Iraq for the US assassination of top anti-ISIS Iranian General Qassim Soleimani. Will Trump’s embrace of the neocons cost him a second term?

January 7, 2020 Posted by | Video | , , | 2 Comments

Iran’s fifth step in suspending nuclear commitments will not mean end to JCPOA: Araqchi

Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister for Political Affairs Abbas Araqchi
Press TV – January 7, 2020

A senior Iranian official says the country’s decision to take the fifth and final step in reducing its commitments under a landmark nuclear deal it clinched with major world powers in 2015 does not mean an end to the accord or Tehran’s withdrawal from it.

Speaking to reporters in Tehran on Tuesday, Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister for Political Affairs Abbas Araqchi said the last step means that “we have reached a reasonable balance” in the nuclear deal, officially known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA).

“The US withdrawal from the JCPOA disrupted the balance of this international accord and now we think that we have reached a reasonable balance in the JCPOA after scaling back the nuclear commitments,” he added.

The Iranian government announced in a statement on Sunday that from now on, the country will observe no operational limitations on its nuclear industry, including with regard to the capacity and level of uranium enrichment, the amount of enriched materials as well as research and development.

“By taking the fifth step in reducing its commitment, the Islamic Republic of Iran eliminates the last key operational restriction it faced under the JCPOA, which is the limitation imposed on the number of centrifuges,” it said.

Araqchi, who is also a senior nuclear negotiator, further said the amount of enrichment would depend on the agenda of the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran (AEOI) and the country’s requirements.

He reiterated that the Islamic Republic would continue to cooperate with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) and said, “We are ready to come back to the previous process whenever the opposite sides [of the nuclear deal] will be able to meet our demands and fulfill their commitments under the JCPOA.”

“It is possible to save the JCPOA if the opposite sides want,” the Iranian diplomat added.

In response to a question about the possibility of Europe triggering the JCPOA’s “dispute resolution mechanism,” also known as the trigger mechanism, whose activation can lead to the return of the UN sanctions on Iran, Araqchi said it only would accelerate the termination of the deal.

“As Iran acted wisely after the US withdrawal from the JCPOA, the other sides are also expected to behave prudently and refrain from escalating tensions,” he added.

US President Donald Trump, a stern critic of the historic deal, unilaterally pulled Washington out of the JCPOA in May 2018, and unleashed the “toughest ever” sanctions against the Islamic Republic in defiance of global criticism in an attempt to strangle the Iranian oil trade.

In response to the US unilateral move, Tehran has so far rowed back on its nuclear commitments four times in compliance with Articles 26 and 36 of the JCPOA, but stressed that its retaliatory measures will be reversible as soon as Europe finds practical ways to shield the mutual trade from the US sanctions.

Iran’s latest nuclear announcement coincided with a major escalation of tensions with Washington after the US assassination of Lieutenant General Qassem Soleimani, the commander of the Quds Force of the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC), in a drone strike in the Iraqi capital of Baghdad early on Friday.

Iran has criticized the three European signatories to the JCPOA — Britain, France and Germany — for failing to salvage the pact by shielding Tehran’s economy from US sanctions.

January 7, 2020 Posted by | Economics, Wars for Israel | , , , | 2 Comments

UK defence secretary ‘reserves the right’ to ‘strike’ Iran

Ben Wallace in a combative mood in the House of Commons
Press TV – January 7, 2020

British defence secretary, Ben Wallace, has put up a spirited defence of the US decision to assassinate Iranian Quds force General Qassem Soleimani in a terrorist-style drone strike outside Baghdad airport.

Delivering a statement in the House of Commons, Wallace claimed that General Soleimani was “no friend of the UK or our allies in the region”.

Wallace tried to justify the assassination on dubious legal grounds by saying: “the UK will always defend the right of countries to defend themselves”.

Wallace’s claim flies in the face of all pertinent facts, notably credible reports that General Soleimani was on a peace mission to Baghdad to try to diffuse tensions with Saudi Arabia.

At any rate, the US accusation that General Soleimani had been planning attacks against US interests hasn’t been backed up by any evidence.

On a more ominous note, Wallace threatened that “aggressive behaviour” from Iran “was never going to go unchallenged”.

Wallace didn’t explain what he meant by “aggressive” behaviour, and the irony of his words was lost on him. After all, Iran was the victim of US aggression when the latter decided to kill the country’s top military commander.

The defence secretary claimed that the UK is “changing the readiness of our forces in the region” by placing “helicopters and ships on standby to assist if the need arises”.

Wallace didn’t address credible reports of the UK adopting an aggressive posture vis-à-vis Iran, in order to assist the US in any potential military action.

The Sun newspaper reported two days ago that a British nuclear-powered submarine was in “striking position” of Iran, ready to fire Tomahawk cruise missiles at Iranian targets.

During the question and answer phase, Wallace was asked by acting Liberal Democrats leader, Sir Ed Davey, whether he would rule out “any UK involvement in any attack in any site in Iran”.

“I’m not going to rule out anything”, said a combative Wallace.

“We cannot say what’s in the minds of Iran or anybody else in the future – that’s why we will always reserve that right to take the decision at the time of it”, he added.

Wallace’s aggressive tone towards Iran is in keeping with the positions of both the Prime Minister, Boris Johnson, and foreign secretary, Dominic Raab, both of whom have defended US actions in recent days.

But Wallace goes a step further by introducing for the first time the strong possibility of the UK taking military action against Iran.

January 7, 2020 Posted by | Militarism | , , | 1 Comment

Turkey, Russia, Iran officials discuss latest developments in region

Russian Defence Minister Sergey Shoygu [Wikipedia]

Russian Defence Minister Sergey Shoygu [Wikipedia]
MEMO | January 7, 2020

Senior officials from Turkey, Russia and Iran discussed the latest developments in the Middle East and North Africa region yesterday.

The Russian Ministry of Defence said the country’s Defence Minister Sergey Shoygu discussed the developments in the Middle East and Libya during a telephone conversation with the head of the Turkish intelligence organisation, Hakan Fidan. The two officials also discussed joint actions to reduce tensions in the region.

The statement added that Shoygu also spoke to Iranian Chief of Staff, Mohammad Bagheri, during which they discussed steps to reduce tensions in the region following Friday’s assassination of Iran’s Commander of the Quds Force, Qassem Soleimani, in a US drone attack near Baghdad airport.

Tensions between Washington and Tehran escalated following Soleimani’s assassination, while, Tehran announced that it would respond “harshly” to the assassination.

January 7, 2020 Posted by | War Crimes | , , , | Leave a comment

Canada says some troops in Iraq to be moved temporarily to Kuwait for safety

MEMO | January 7, 2020

Some of Canada’s 500 military personnel based in Iraq will be temporarily moved to Kuwait for safety reasons, the country’s top military official said on Tuesday, due to fears of possible retaliation thereafter a US drone strike on Iran’s top military commander, reports Reuters.

General Jonathan Vance, chief of the defense staff, said in a letter to military families that “the news coming out of the Middle East is alarming for many of you.”

“Some of our people will be moved temporarily from Iraq to Kuwait,” he added. Simply put, we are doing this to ensure their safety and security.”

Some of the Canadian troops are taking part in a NATO mission while others are running Operation Impact, a Canadian initiative to train soldiers in Iraq, Jordan, Lebanon, and Kuwait. In all, some 800 Canadian troops are in the Middle East.

Earlier in the day, NATO said it was moving some of its trainers out of Iraq, without giving details.

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau spoke to NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg on Monday and the two men “emphasized the importance of de-escalating tensions and the need to support security and stability in Iraq,” Trudeau’s office said in a statement.


NATO suspends training activities in Iraq after Soleimani killing

January 7, 2020 Posted by | Illegal Occupation | , , | 1 Comment

Iraq PM confirms receiving ‘signed’ US pullout letter

Press TV – January 7, 2020

Amid confusion over a reported US letter to Iraq announcing the steps its military would take to move out of Iraq, Prime Minister Adel Abdul Mahdi confirms that Baghdad has actually received “signed and translated” copies from the US Army concerning the withdrawal.

In a televised cabinet meeting on Tuesday, Abdul Mahdi clearly refuted all US claims that the letter had been sent by mistake or it had been inauthentic.

On Sunday, the Iraqi Parliament voted unanimously in favor of a bill demanding the withdrawal of all foreign military forces led by the United States from the country.

The vote came only two days after US airstrikes assassinated senior Iranian commander Lt. Gen. Qassem Soleimani, and the second-in-command of Iraq’s Popular Mobilization Units (PMU) anti-terror group, Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis in the Iraqi capital.

Earlier, various news agencies reported that Brigadier General William Seely, who oversees US Task Force Iraq, had sent a letter to the head of Iraq’s Joint Operations Command on Monday, suggesting potential withdrawal of the forces belonging to a US-led coalition, which has been operating in Iraq since 2014 under the pretext of fighting Daesh.

‘Signed and translated’

US Defense Secretary Mark Esper later denied that the US military had announced preparation for “movement out of Iraq,” and the Pentagon claimed that an unsigned draft version of the letter had been sent by mistake.

Abdel Mahdi, however, said he had received signed and translated copies at 8:00 p.m. local time (1700 GMT) on Monday.

The letter discussed “redeploying with an aim to withdraw from the country. The expressions were very clear,” he said. “It was an official letter written in such a manner,” the premier told ministers.

“It’s not a piece of paper that fell off the printer or reached us by coincidence,” he added. The letters only contained a translation mistake that the US military corrected and provided Baghdad with new versions, Abdul Mahdi noted.

The AFP said it had received a copy of the letter late Monday and verified its authenticity with both US and Iraqi officials, the agency added.

In it, Seely informed his Iraqi counterparts that American troops were preparing to leave Iraq. Seely wrote the US-led coalition would “be re-positioning forces in the coming days and weeks to prepare for onward movement.”

“In order to conduct this task, Coalition Forces are required to take certain measures to ensure that the movement out of Iraq is conducted in a safe and efficient manner,” said the letter.

It said helicopters would be travelling in and around Baghdad’s heavily-fortified Green Zone, where the US Embassy is located as part of the preparations.

The AFP, meanwhile, said its reporters could hear helicopters flying low over Baghdad throughout the night on Monday as well as Tuesday.

January 7, 2020 Posted by | Illegal Occupation | , | Leave a comment

Iranian MPs declare all of US military ‘terrorist entity’ after General Soleimani killing

Soldiers from the 82nd Airborne Division wait for Middle East deployment © Global Look Press / Timothy L. Hale / Source:
RT | January 7, 2020

The US Armed Forces are now regarded as a terrorist organization under an urgent motion by Iranian lawmakers, who earlier branded the assassination of the Quds Force commander “state-sponsored terrorism,” state media report.

Iranian MPs adopted a bill on Tuesday calling “personnel of the Pentagon, all affiliated companies, institutions, agents and commanders” members of a “terrorist entity,” local media reported.

The bill amends and expands previous legislation which gave a similar designation to US Central Command (CENTCOM). Initiated in April of last year, it was a tit-for-tat response to Washington’s blacklisting of the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC).

The latest designation, however, comes as tensions between Washington and Tehran reach boiling point, following the US’ assassination of Quds Force commander Qassem Soleimani in Baghdad on Friday. Tehran has vowed to avenge Soleimani’s death, a promise that in turn led to US President Donald Trump threatening to strike 52 “very high level” Iranian cultural and state targets should Iran hit any American interests.

The Iranian government has reportedly been considering 13 “revenge scenarios” in retaliation for Soleimani’s killing. The semi-official Fars News Agency quoted Iranian Supreme National Security Council secretary Ali Shamkhani as saying that “even if there is consensus on the weakest scenario, carrying it out can be a historic nightmare for the Americans.”

January 7, 2020 Posted by | Timeless or most popular, War Crimes | , | 1 Comment

Yemen’s Ansarullah: We’re partaking in regional drive to boot US forces out

Al-Mayadeen TV – 05/01/2020

Member of Ansarullah’s Political Council, Mohammad al-Bakhiti, says the Yemeni movement is partaking in the region-wide response to Iranian General Soleimani’s assassination by the US military. Bakhiti says the regional response is aimed at driving all US forces out of the region.


– the coming days will bring huge changes to the region

– the American aggression against Iraq is an aggression against the entire Axis of Resistance, which requires for unifying the theatre in which the response will be delivered

– of course Sayyed Abdul Malik al-Houthi (Yemen’s Ansarullah leader) has already stated that this aggression is an aggression against the entire Axis of Resistance

– Yemen is a member of the Axis of Resistance, and we are at the heart of the conflict with this American coalition

– the American aggression will lead to the expansion of the conflict’s scope

– what we require now is greater coordination (between the members of the Axis of Resistance)

– as for the nature of the response, this is left for the leadership

– (yet) there is no response that can equal this (American) aggression other than popular, political and military action that drives out (all) US forces from the region

January 7, 2020 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Solidarity and Activism | , , , | 1 Comment

Cloud Extraction Firms Are Offering Your Most Personal Data to the Government With Little Oversight

By Mohamed Elmaazi – Sputnik – January 7, 2020

A UK civil liberties charity says surveillance technology firms offer the ability to access and copy vast amounts of personal data, including from social media accounts, emails, messenger programmes, health monitors, and many more applications, all without any clear legal guidelines

Privacy International is sounding the alarm about highly intrusive surveillance technology currently on offer to the government agencies worldwide, with little to no legal oversight. The UK-based civil liberties charity published its latest report, Cloud extraction technology: the secret tech that lets government agencies collect masses of data from your apps, on 7 January 2020.

It examines the tech being sold to policing agencies which gives them access  to “cloud data” or information which is stored on third party storage devices. Applications which store immense amounts of data on “clouds” include Twitter, Instagram, Facebook and My Space, any e-mail account like Gmail or YahooMail, location trackers, health monitors like the Fitbit wristwatch, and storage software like Drop Box, Google Cloud Storage, and iCloud. Even encrypted messenger apps like WhatsApp store conversations on a cloud whenever a user backs up their conversations, for example to transfer them to a new phone.

In 2017 surveillance tech firm Cellebrite, an industry leader, celebrated the amount of data available saying:

“Private cloud-based data represents a virtual goldmine of potential evidence for forensic investigators.”

Cellebrite Data Available on Mobile Phones Vs Cloud Data

Cellebrite Data Available on Mobile Phones Vs Cloud Data Pg 2

Continuous Access to Personal Data of Millions of People

The report is based on publicly available information, freedom information requests, and Privacy International’s own technical analysis. It is important to note that once someone has accessed the cloud data of an individual they can continue to get live updates to the cloud, even after a device is returned to its owner.

The type of information which surveillance tech firms say they can access is:

  • emails,
  • social media activity,
  • account and device details (including passwords),
  • contacts,
  • user activity,
  • incoming and outgoing messages,
  • calendars,
  • notifications,
  • user created lists,
  • created/installed skills, and
  • preferences.

In pitching one of their surveillance programmes, Cellebrite suggests to its clients that access to people’s an Amazon user’s search history and wish list “can indicate suspicious behaviour leading up to a crime”.

Another surveillance tech firm, Oxygen Forensic, says that they can provide access to a user’s “actual voice”, when speaking to their digital devices such as Alexa, which they say offers “tremendous insights into the user’s everyday activity, their contacts, shared messages, and valuable voice commands.”

Privacy International Legal Safeguards Are Needed

Privacy International says that all of this technology is being used in a “vacuum of legal standards” and that many people don’t even know that this tech exists, let alone that it is being used against them. They say that legal protections and safeguards need to rapidly evolve to take into account the growing capability of surveillance technology and the potential threat they pose to civil liberties.

The report ends by calling for an immediate independent review of the surveillance technology and the current legal regime as it stands, with consultation taken from the public, industry, and police.

The report’s authors argue that there must be a clear legal basis before authorities can store or analyse anyone’s cloud data and that a warrant must be needed before such data can be accessed.

January 7, 2020 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Deception, Timeless or most popular | , , | Leave a comment

Immoral Injury

By Kiask | Ken’s Blog | January 6, 2020

I recently attended a panel entitled “Coming Home: Dialogues on the Moral, Psychological, and Spiritual Impacts of War”. The event was about the invisible scars many veterans bear long after he or she experienced the horrors of war. How the scars were inflicted and how the afflicted recover from them is something those, like me, who have never been in combat can hardly understand.

One of the panelists at the event related the experience of a fighter pilot who on a bombing run was unable to see clearly what he had hit. Viewing his cockpit screen footage later, he saw that a carport had been totally demolished by his bomb. Amidst the rubble were four small bicycles. For years afterwards the pilot had a recurring nightmare in which he enters a bombed-out building and picks up a dead child from among the rubble. As he hugs the child to him, he sees that the back of the child’s head has been blown off. Simultaneously, the face of the child morphs into that of his own son.

Such anguished memories are sometimes referred to as Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), sometimes as “moral injury”. There’s a difference. PTSD is a mental disorder which makes it difficult for a vet to reintegrate himself back into civilian life. Moral injury is a “soul in anguish, not a psychological disorder”, as one psychiatrist puts it. It’s been defined as “an injury to an individual’s moral conscience and values resulting from an act of perceived moral transgression”. If a veteran survives the wound to his morality, he may not only successfully get on with his life but make an especially valuable contribution to his country.

A second panelist at the event, a lady fighter pilot, came back from her tour in Iraq uninjured either traumatically or morally. Without a twinge of conscience, she gushed about how good it felt to drop a bomb on a car filled with ISIS terrorists, knowing she had killed the personification of evil. She felt no more empathy for the those she had killed than do our drone pilots, raining down death from thousands of miles away, who refer to the victims of their bombs as “bugsplat”.

I was tempted to try to inflict a little moral injury on the gung-ho Top Gunness, so cocksure she was of the rectitude of her “good kill”, but I decided that wouldn’t be very nice. If I weren’t such a nice guy, I would have pointed out to her that the United States has a long history of working with Islamic extremists to counter governments we don’t approve of, the most overt case being our support of the mujahideen in Afghanistan in the 1980s.

In more recent times, our attitude vis-à-vis the Islamic State (ISIS) has been disturbingly ambiguous. The thousands of foreign fighters who poured into Syria to join ISIS came through the territory of our NATO ally, Turkey—apparently with that country’s blessing… and, by extension, our own. Our good friend Qatar is generally credited with being a major financial backer of ISIS. Would we tolerate such behavior from a faux country like Qatar with a measly 300,000 citizens and an American military base within a stone’s throw of the Emir’s palace if we didn’t approve of their generosity?

So long as ISIS directed its attacks against the Syrian government, we had no problem with it. Only when it diverted its attention to trying to take over Iraq did we decide it needed to be reined in. Even then, a number of times we bombed Syrian or Iraqi forces engaged in battle with ISIS—all a big mistake, of course. Someone less kind than myself might have suggested to “Miss Crack-shot USA” that those grisly videos of masked evildoers beheading some hapless victim, which so enraged her as to free her from any soul-searching about exterminating some noisome bugs, owed more to American stage managers than to some mullah’s fiery rhetoric.

I suspect growing up just down the road from the Air Force Academy, then attending the Naval Academy, made the pilot immune to my contrarian point of view, but not every veteran is so lucky. Killing a fellow human being without guilt qualms is not normal. That’s why many soldiers—even in the heat of battle—never fire their weapon. It’s also why the army, I’ve been told, came up with the rapid-fire M16: you don’t aim it at anyone in particular, you just start blazing away.

According to one expert, moral injury occurs when “(i) there has been a betrayal of what is morally right, (ii) by someone who holds legitimate authority and (iii) in a high-stakes situation.” Sending those who trust you into battle on the basis of lies (e.g., Iraq’s weapons of mass destruction; staged gas attacks in Syria) is a gross betrayal of their trust. Many returning from the war which gave us the term Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, the Vietnam War, concluded that’s what happened. That’s why they founded Vietnam Veterans Against the War (VVAW).

I can only imagine what pangs of guilt must haunt the slumber of those who feel they’ve been lied to. Killing in a justified cause is hard enough to reconcile with our deep-seated aversion to the taking of human life; without legitimate justification, it becomes simply murder. How decent, good-hearted, feeling ex-soldiers deal with this “immoral injury”, as I call it, is a mystery to me. Maybe that’s why many Vietnam vets don’t like to talk about their experiences. No one likes to admit to having been duped, even if they were only eighteen years old at the time and most of their older and supposedly wiser compatriots let themselves be duped as well.

I hope those trying to help troubled veterans do not seek to have them forget their shame, anger, and disgust over being betrayed by those in power. Having been injured themselves, the vets can instruct those of us who have never paid the price on the techniques employed by unscrupulous leaders to get us into illegitimate, aggressive wars. That’s the special contribution I mentioned earlier that veterans can make to our country. Many members of the VVAW are doing just that today.

Whatever methods are being used to “cure” those suffering from immoral injury, they have not been completely successful. Last year, the number of attempted and successful suicides amongst marines—active and former—hit an all-time high: 354. Professor Lawrence Wilkerson of William & Mary—who in a former life was Col. Larry Wilkerson, Chief of Staff to Colin Powell when he was Secretary of State—offers this explanation: “GIs have killed or helped to kill more than 400,000 human beings in these wars [Afghanistan, Iraq]. Killing at that level affects people. It particularly affects people when they are unable to explain the reason for the killing…. The U.S. government has told these young men and women that they are killing these people for freedom’s sake, for democracy, for women’s rights, for justice, to protect Americans, and for all manner of reasons that these troops know are just so much hogwash…. These GIs know that, on account of many of these lies, they are killing people, wounding people, destroying their homes, bombing their towns and villages, and generally wreaking havoc for ‘God and country’. They know this is a lie. But what are they to do about it? Some of them kill themselves.”
The next time you see someone in uniform and are inclined to express your thanks, keep in mind what Col. Wilkerson has to say about this: “[T]he 99 percent of America with no skin in the game of war makes sure to say quite frequently ‘thank you for your service’ to any of these GIs encountered at airports, in restaurants, on the street, or elsewhere. From my own experience talking with serving troops and veterans—including a triple-amputee at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center— nothing galls them more. They see the 99 percent assuaging their guilt with a few meaningless words that don’t do a thing to alleviate the GIs’ concerns. In fact, such triteness deepens those concerns.”

January 7, 2020 Posted by | Timeless or most popular, War Crimes | | 1 Comment

Chelsea Clinton Gains $9 Mln from Corporate Board Position in Her Mother’s Friend Company – Report

Sputnik – 07.01.2020

Chelsea Clinton has reaped $9 million in compensation since 2011 for serving on the board of an internet investment company, according to Barron’s, a financial publication.

Barron’s reported Sunday that Clinton has profited as a board member for IAC/InterActiveCorp, a media and internet investment company that has an ownership stake in 150 well-known brands, such as Vimeo, Tinder, Angie’s List and Home Advisor. The only child of former President Bill Clinton and 2016 presidential candidate Hillary Clinton has served on IAC’s board since 2011 and receives an annual $50,000 retainer and $250,000 worth of restricted IAC stock units, according to Barron’s.

She reported owning $8.95 million worth of IAC stock to the Securities and Exchange Commission at the end of December. According to Barron’s, IAC’s stock has risen 89 percent, 50 percent and 36 percent in 2017, 2018 and 2019, respectively, in an extremely steep rise.

Clinton was also named to the board of Expedia Group in March of 2017, a position that typically earned $250,000 in 2015, according to a report at the time by The Guardian. Both IAC and Expedia are controlled by Barry Diller, a business and television mogul and, notably, a friend of Hillary Clinton.

January 7, 2020 Posted by | Corruption | , , | 1 Comment