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Senate Committee slips through $38 billion package to Israel

By Alison Weir | If Americans Knew | May 22, 2020

The Senate Foreign Relations Committee secretively passed a bill yesterday to give Israel a minimum of $38 billion over the next ten years despite the ongoing devastation to the US economy by coronavirus policies.

The bill – S.3176 –  will now go before the full Senate. Since the legislation has already been passed by the House of Representatives, if the Senate passes the bill, it will then go to the president to be signed into law.

The bill was passed by the committee under two unusual circumstances and with almost no public awareness.

First, Senate Committee Chairman Jim Risch (R-Idaho) refused to allow a livestream of the meeting, despite the fact that the Senate Rules panel had recommended that extra efforts be taken to ensure public transparency while the Capitol is closed to the public and the presence of reporters is severely limited. The Senate’s Press Gallery Standing Committee of Correspondents had objected strongly to Risch’s decision.

Second, the bill was passed without being named, debated, or even discussed, even though it would set into law the largest such aid package in U.S. history. There has been no US mention of the bill by US mainstream media.

The massive package is particularly noteworthy in light of the current devastation to the American taxpayers who will be footing the bill – over $10 million per day. In recent months approximately 30 million Americans have lost jobs, 100,000 small businesses have already closed forever, and over seven million are at risk of doing so.

The bill was voted on as part of a package of 15 bills that were voted on “en bloc” (all together).

After Senator Kaine said he didn’t know what the list contained, Risch responded: “I’m not trying to pull anything here… this was circulated among the staff.”

Risch then rapidly listed the numbers, but did not give the titles. There was then a voice vote and the motion passed unanimously. (See video below.)

Democratic members of the committee had voiced strong objections to blocking a livestream of the meeting because of a different agenda item. After the meeting, Committee Ranking Member Robert Menendez (D-NJ) released a video of the meeting.

None, however, voiced any concern to giving a massive aid package to a country widely documented as a major violator of human rights.

Neither did any Democrats on the committee object to requiring American taxpayers to give Israel over $7,000 per minute when many Americans are suffering catastrophic financial difficulties.

Democratic committee members Menendez, Ben Cardin, Cory Booker, and Chris Coons, like many of the Republican members, are particularly known for being under the influence of AIPAC and the Israel lobby and receiving pro-Israel campaign donations. Many of the members are co-sponsors of the bill.

The bill, entitled “United States-Israel Security Assistance Authorization Act of 2020,” expands and sets into law a memorandum of understanding agreement signed by the Obama administration with Israel in 2016. This agreement is nonbinding and not required by law. It also set the $38 billion as a ceiling.

The legislation just passed by the committee would make this disbursal legally required, and, in addition, it would make the $38 billion a floor rather than a ceiling. In other words, the amount of money could legally go even higher.

Given the power of the pro-Israel lobby, combined with the fact that U.S. media are not informing Americans of this use of their tax money, the likelihood is that US money to Israel will go up in the future – possibly even this year.)

Most Americans say they feel the US is giving Israel too much money. Israel has received more US tax money than any other country – on average, about 7,000 times more per capita than others around the world.

The Council for the National Interest has posted a petition against this year’s installment, $3.8 billion. So far, it has been signed by close to 2,000 people.

The portion of the meeting that passed the bill:


Alison Weir is executive director of If Americans Knew, president of the Council for the National Interest, and author of Against Our Better Judgment: The Hidden History of How the U.S. Was Used to Create Israel

May 22, 2020 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism | , , , | 5 Comments

Plan to spend Russia & China ‘into oblivion’ in arms race will bankrupt only America

By Scott Ritter | RT | May 22, 2020

In a stunning display of arrogance, ignorance, and hubris, President Trump’s new arms control czar threatens to spend America’s adversaries into “oblivion” in any new arms race. But the joke is on him.

Trump’s newly appointed Special Presidential Envoy for Arms Control Marshall Billingslea has breathed new life into an historical interpretation that holds the United States won the Cold War with the Soviet Union by escalating an arms race that turned out to be unsustainable for Moscow, bankrupting the Soviet economy and accelerating the collapse of the Soviet Union as a political entity.

In remarks made to the Hudson Institute, a conservative think tank, Billingslea noted that the threat of a new arms race would be enough to bring both China and Russia to the negotiating table for the purpose of crafting a new trilateral arms control treaty that would replace the current bilateral New START treaty, scheduled to expire in February 2021.

“We intend to establish a new arms control regime now, precisely to prevent a full-blown arms race,” Billingslea said. If, however, either Russia or China (or both) decided to forego negotiations and continue to pursue new strategic nuclear weapons, then President Trump “has made clear that we have a tried and true practice here”.

“We know how to win these races and we know how to spend the adversary into oblivion.”

There are numerous factors that mitigate against Billingslea’s seeming desire to refight the Cold War. First and foremost, the United States, like the rest of the world, exists in a new post-pandemic economic reality. Whether or not the American people or their elected representatives in Congress are prepared to shoulder the costs of an avoidable arms race with Russia and China while on the cusp of an economic depression is very much a debatable point.

Even if the political will for the kind of open-ended spending extravaganza required to “spend the adversary into oblivion” existed (and with 30-plus million Americans currently out of work, and millions more expected to follow, such thinking rests more in the realm of fantasy than reality), it is virtually impossible for the US today to replicate the conditions that existed back in the 1980s. The current Russian and US defense economies of today are a far cry from those that existed during the Cold War, a fact that bodes well for Russia, and less so for the US.

Russian defense industry today is founded on a legacy inherited from Soviet times, when defense industries took precedence over every other aspect of the Soviet economy and attracted the finest scientists and technicians, backed by a virtually unlimited budget. Under former Minister of Defense Dmitry Ustinov, the Soviet ballistic missile production base benefited from a multitude of research and design centers, each connected to its own supporting infrastructure of production facilities responsible for manufacturing diverse components and assembling them into finished products. By 1988, the Soviets had seven different ICBM types deployed. Those were a mix of third-, fourth- and fifth-generation liquid and solid fuel missiles.

While impressive in terms of scope, scale and quality, the Soviet ICBM procurement model was, in the long run, unsustainable. The demands generated by the perestroika reforms initiated by Mikhail Gorbachev beginning in 1985 meant the existing model of multiple design bureaus working in parallel in a virtually competition-free environment had to transition to a missile procurement model driven by cost accounting methods and the limitations imposed by a new era of bilateral strategic arms control agreements.

In the years leading up to the collapse of the Soviet Union, there remained only two missile design bureaus involved in the production of ICBMs. After the fall of the USSR, one of them – Yuzhnoye – fell under the control of Ukraine.

Today, Russia’s JSC Votkinsk Machine Building Plant produces the RS-24 Yars missile, deployed in both a mobile- and silo- based variant, and is developing the RS-26 Rubezh, a modification of the RS-24 capable of deploying the advanced Avangard hypersonic glide vehicle. Votkinsk also produces the solid-fuel RS-56 Bulava submarine-launched ballistic missile (SLBM), its first foray outside of the world of ICBM development and manufacturing. In a sign of the times, the Makeyev JSC in Miass, which formerly only produced SLBM’s, is producing the massive RS-28 Sarmat ICBM, intended to replace the aging R-36 Soviet-era heavy silo-based ICBM.

The new Russian ICBMs are the finest in the world—no nation has anything that can compare, even the United States. They are also among the most cost-effective in the world today. The fact that these missiles are produced in a manufacturing environment plagued by shortages of materials needed to produce critical components is a testament to the resilience of the Russian defense industry, which has literally been forced to both adapt and overcome in the course of the three decades of economically difficult times that have passed since the end of the Soviet Union.

For its part, the US defense industry has been the benefactor of virtually limitless largesse, feeding off a bloated defense budget that has expanded from some $300 billion in 1990 to over $740 billion today. However, over the course of the past 30 years, this money has not been spent on modernizing the US strategic nuclear force. The example of the Minuteman III missiles serves as a point of illustration.

The United States currently deploys a force of 400 Minuteman III silo-based ICBM’s. The original Minuteman ICBM was developed at a cost of $17 billion (measured in 2020-equivalent dollars) over the course of five years. The Minuteman III—the version deployed today—is derived from the same 1960’s technology and was initially deployed in 1970. Originally designed for a lifetime of some 10 years, the Minuteman III has been subjected to a series of life-extension upgrades that will keep it viable until 2030. After this time, the missile must be replaced.

The US Air Force is currently developing a new silo-based ICBM, known as the Ground Based Strategic Deterrent (GBSD). The missile will be designed to last until 2075, and in addition to incorporating new technologies, will also involve significant upgrades to the related silos and launch control facilities. Current estimates published by the US Air Force for the cost of the GBSD are some $62 billion (by way of comparison, the total Russian military budget is approximately $65 billion).

Even this high cost is disputed by the Department of Defense’s Cost Assessment and Program Evaluation (CAPE) office, which projects the actual cost of the GBSD to be between $85 and 100 billion. One of the major reasons for this discrepancy lies in the fact that the United States has not designed a new ICBM since the 1970’s, with the MX Peacekeeper. The final contract for the GBSD is expected to be let in September 2020, although as the only bidder, Northrop Grumman, Inc. is expected to be the awardee. This fact alone makes the CAPE estimate seem overly conservative—Northrop Grumman has developed a well-earned reputation in defense industry circles for projects it is involved in coming in over budget and behind schedule. Based upon current examples of contractual cost overruns, the GBSD costs could skyrocket to $200 billion or so, and this number does not incorporate the negative impact on defense procurement resulting from the failure of Congress to pass a defense budget on time, making long-term procurement decisions impossible and further driving up the cost.

The GBSD is but one of a range of modernization programs being planned by the US, involving every aspect of its strategic nuclear triad. These programs, which include new manned strategic bombers and new missile-carrying submarines, are expected to cost more than $1.2 trillion over the course of the next 30 years—and these are conservative estimates. Given the spectacular budgetary inefficiencies in the US defense procurement system today, it is almost certain that any new strategic nuclear weapons system, whether it be an ICBM, SLBM or manned bomber, will cost the US taxpayer far more than originally planned, and more than likely perform far less than originally designed.

Marshall Billingslea can bluster all he wants about spending an adversary into oblivion. The reality is that the US is not prepared, politically or economically, to engage in any new arms race predicated on open-ended budgetary support.

In the Cold War, it was the Soviet Union playing catch-up to US superiority in the field of ballistic missile technology. Today the tables have been turned.  Any arms race will find the US operating from a disadvantage right out of the gate, with Russia already fielding the kind of fifth-generation missiles the US has yet to design, let alone produce.

Scott Ritter is a former US Marine Corps intelligence officer. He served in the Soviet Union as an inspector implementing the INF Treaty, in General Schwarzkopf’s staff during the Gulf War, and from 1991-1998 as a UN weapons inspector. Follow him on Twitter @RealScottRitter

May 22, 2020 Posted by | Economics, Militarism | , , | 1 Comment

Russian Embassy Denounces US Grant Designed to Find External Enemy for Pandemic Failings

Sputnik -May 22, 2020

WASHINGTON – Russia’s Embassy in the United States denounced a US State Department grant that offers $250,000 for manufacturing health disinformation allegations in order to blame a foreign enemy for Washington’s own shortfalls.

“Such grants reveal the true mood, thoughts and way of thinking of partners from the State Department. Even during the most difficult global epidemic, when we, both Russia and the United States, lose thousands of citizens and should stand together, efforts are aimed at finding an external enemy. He is supposed to be blamed – entirely or partially – for own deficiencies,” the Embassy wrote on Facebook on Friday.

It said there are “influential Russophobic forces in Washington” who never stop their destructive activities, ignoring opposite signals that come from US President Donald Trump.

According to the tender, announced by the State Department’s Bureau of Global Public Affairs, the funds will be granted to an organization with relevant experience “to produce a report on Russian and Soviet health-related disinformation campaigns.”

The Embassy said that it’s already possible to predict that the investigation will target RT TV network and Sputnik news agency.

May 22, 2020 Posted by | Deception, Russophobia | | 1 Comment

Court rejects OAN suit over MSNBC host Rachel Maddow’s claim about ‘Russian propaganda’

‘Rhetorical hyperbole’ and NOT FACT

© Global Look /ZUMA Press /Michael Brochstein
RT | May 23, 2020

A US judge dismissed a defamation lawsuit by One America News Network against MSNBC over Rachel Maddow’s claims that OAN was “literally” Russian propaganda, ruling that her segment was merely “an opinion” and “exaggeration.”

OAN sued the liberal talk show host and MSNBC for defamation, demanding over $10 million in damages, back in September 2019. The lawsuit was based on the July 22 episode of The Rachel Maddow Show, where Maddow launched a scathing broadside against the conservative television network, labeling it “the most obsequiously pro-Trump right wing news outlet in America” and “really literally paid Russian propaganda.”

In the segment, Maddow cited a story by The Daily Beast’s Kevin Poulsen about OAN’s Kristian Rouz, who has previously contributed to Sputnik as a freelance author. Toeing the general US mainstream line on the Russian media, be it Sputnik or RT, Poulsen branded the Russian news agency “the Kremlin’s official propaganda outlet” and said Rouz was once on its “payroll.”

Shortly after MSNBC’s star talent peddled the claim, OAN rejected the allegations as “utterly and completely false.” The outlet, which is owned by the Herring Networks, a small California-based family company, said that it “has never been paid or received a penny from Russia or the Russian government,” with its only funding coming from the Herring family.

In their bid to win the case, Maddow herself, MSNBC, Comcast Corporation and NBCUniversal Media did not address the accusation itself – namely, that her claim about OAN was false – but opted to invoke the First Amendment, insisting that the rant should be protected as free speech.

Siding with Maddow, the California district court defined Maddow’s show as a mix of “news and opinions,” concluding that the manner in which the progressive host blurted out the accusations “makes it more likely that a reasonable viewer would not conclude that the contested statement implies an assertion of objective fact.”

“The statement constitutes opinion and rhetorical hyperbole protected under the First Amendment.”

The court said that while Maddow “truthfully” related the story by the Daily Beast, the statement about OAN being funded by the Kremlin was her “opinion” and “exaggeration” of the said article.

While the legal trick helped Maddow to get off the hook without ever trying to defend her initial statement, conservative commentators on social media wasted no time in pointing out that dodging a payout to OAN literally meant admitting that Maddow was not, in fact, news.

May 22, 2020 Posted by | Deception, Fake News, Mainstream Media, Warmongering, Russophobia | , | Leave a comment

Will Biden-Ukraine Revelations Fall on Deaf Ears Among US Voters Again?

Sputnik – May 22, 2020

With just five months to go until the presidential election, Joe Biden’s campaign has taken a fresh hit after new tapes implied that he had moved Ukrainian officials like chess pieces. The question is whether the story will have the magnitude of Trump’s impeachment or get overshadowed like the Tara Reade scandal.

The latest developments in Ukrainegate paint a “shocking” picture of a tight US grip on the previous Ukrainian government, but this probably won’t sway the minds of US voters when they go to polls in November, pundits say.

The Ukraine leak

On Tuesday, a Ukrainian lawmaker released the tapes of phone calls between senior Obama administration officials, Joe Biden and John Kerry, and then-Ukrainian President Poroshenko. They appear to show how Joe Biden made US financial assistance to Ukraine contingent on the firing of the country’s prosecutor general.

Poroshenko did fire the prosecutor, Viktor Shokin, despite the fact that there were no corruption charges pressed against him nor was there “any information about him doing something wrong,” as the Ukrainian president himself purportedly told Biden in a phone call. Moreover, it appeared that Poroshenko was only willing to pick a replacement for Shokin – one of the top roles in the judicial system – if Biden gave his blessing.

Andriy Derkach, the lawmaker who leaked the tapes, accused Poroshenko of spending the $1 billion in aid, which he received after firing Shokin, on defence contracts with companies linked to the then-president or his close associates.

‘Shocking’ level of interference

“The conversations of Petro Poroshenko with his US coordinators Joe Biden and John Kerry reveal the role of Washington in Ukrainian politics since the 2014 coup d’etat,” says political analyst and columnist Mateusz Piskorsky. “It was quite obvious before, nevertheless, now there’s a chance, that more people – especially in Ukraine – will understand the level of foreign influence in their country.”

“What might be quite shocking is the level of interference. Of course, we already knew about US strategic control of Ukraine before. But now it’s also obvious, that even medium-level personal decisions have been taken under the influence of Biden and Kerry. On the other hand, it’s quite strange that the vice president of a superpower paid so much attention to the prosecutor general of a country on the periphery. But this is already the question of Biden’s family private business in Ukraine.”

Joe Biden has brought up Shokin’s ouster in the past. He explained it by Shokin’s perceived failure or unwillingness to act against corruption in Ukraine, although Donald Trump and his supporters have claimed that Biden pressed for the firing because Shokin was investigating Burisma, the private energy company where his son Hunter Biden was a paid member of the board.

Trump even asked Poroshenko’s successor Zelensky to investigate the theory, and that request fuelled a rare impeachment process which was stymied in the Republican-controlled Senate in February.

Too divided to keep a cool head

In the meantime, Piskorsky explains that the “American society is so deeply divided along party lines, that the news won’t have crucial significance for Biden’s electoral prospects.”

“For the supporters of a Democratic candidate, it’s all about provocation by Trump and his people,” he says.

Conservative news outlets have been running Biden-Poroshenko stories, but the mainstream media have largely downplayed it. The Washington Post, for instance, called it a “gigantic nothingburger,” and Newsweek repeated Poroshenko’s claims that the tapes were made public as part of a Russian “special operation.”

“Vice-President Biden explains his interference in Ukraine’s politics as supposedly preserving democracy and therefore the liberal media has bought into this weak rationale,” laments Dr. Zalmay Gulzad, professor of social sciences at Harold Washington College in Chicago. “The majority of the media is very anti-Trump and therefore more lenient towards Biden. Unfortunately, the choice that America has is between these two.”

Professor Stephen B. Presser from Northwestern University School of Law suggests that the tapes are likely to have “little effect” on Biden, as did the Tara Reade scandal.

“It is much more likely that Mr. Biden’s diminishing mental abilities will hurt him more, but American politics, as you know are very unpredictable,” Prof Presser adds. “Often Americans pay attention to ethnic characteristics, and Biden’s Catholicism, and the race of his vice presidential running mate (assuming he designates a black woman) may actually be more important than Ukraine or Tara Reade.”

Writer and media commentator E. Michael Jones believes that the new revelations are “not going to help Biden’s chances for election in the fall, which were slim at best and only based on media bias against Donald Trump.”

At the same time, he says, “it also underscores the massive amount of corruption in the Deep State. The legitimacy of the American form of government rests on the belief that government agencies like the Federal Bureau of Investigation are above partisan politics and can, therefore, be trusted as an impartial investigative body. Adding Bidengate to Russiagate will destroy this fiction forever.”

Although the tapes, released on May 19, have yet to make a splash in the United States, the Ukrainian Prosecutor General’s office on Wednesday followed up with an investigation into possible treason and abuse of power by Poroshenko.

The former president insists that the recordings were fabricated and that the Kremlin had played a role in the leak. The Biden campaign did not question their authenticity but maintained that they were “heavily edited.”

May 22, 2020 Posted by | Corruption | , , , | Leave a comment

Why does Israel celebrate its terrorists: Ben Uliel and the murder of the Dawabsheh Family

Israeli media and Zionist apologists everywhere are busy whitewashing Israel’s globally-tattered image using the rare indictment of an Israeli terrorist, Amiram Ben Uliel, who was recently convicted for murdering the Palestinian Dawabsheh family, including an 18-month-old toddler in the town of Duma, south of Nablus.

The conviction of Ben Uliel by an Israeli three-judge court on May 18, is expectedly celebrated by some as proof that the Israeli judicial system is fair and transparent, and that Israel does not need to be investigated by outside parties.

The timing of the Israeli court’s decision to convict Ben Uliel of three counts of murder and two counts of attempted murder was particularly important, as it followed a decision by the the International Criminal Court (ICC) Prosecutor, Fatou Bensouda, to move forward with its investigation of war crimes committed in Occupied Palestine.

Considering how Israel’s extremists, especially those living illegally in the Occupied West Bank, are governed through a separate, and far more lenient system than the military regime that governs Palestinians, the seemingly-clear indictment of the Israeli terrorist deserves further scrutiny.

Israel’s apologists were quick to celebrate the verdict by the court, to the extent that Israel’s own internal intelligence agency, the Shin Bet, known for its notorious torture methods of Palestinian prisoners, described the decision as “an important milestone in the battle against Jewish terror”.

Others labored to separate Ben Uliel’s grizzly attack from the rest of Israeli society, implying that the man was a lone wolf and not the direct outcome of Israel’s unhinged racism and violent discourse directed at innocent Palestinians.

Despite the clear indictment of Ben Uliel, the Israeli court was keen on accentuating the point that the Israeli terrorist acted alone and that he was not a member of a terrorist organization. Based on that logic, the court argued that the judges “could not rule out that the attack was motivated by a desire for revenge or racism without Ben-Uliel actually being a member of an organized group.”

Amiram Ben-Uliel, a Jewish settler, is lead by police for his sentencing hearing over the 2015 arson attack that killed a Palestinian toddler and his parents [AVSHALOM SASSONI/POOL/AFP/Getty Images]

Amiram Ben-Uliel, a Jewish settler, at his sentencing hearing over the 2015 arson attack that killed a Palestinian toddler, Ali Saeed Dawabsheh and his parents [AVSHALOM SASSONI/POOL/AFP/Getty Images]

The verdict was a best case scenario for Israel’s image under the circumstances, as it deliberately absolved the massive terrorist network that spawned the likes of Ben Uliel and the Israeli army that protects those very extremists on a daily basis, while whitewashing Israel’s deservedly bad reputation as a violent society with an unjust judicial system.

But Ben Uliel is, by no measure, a lone wolf.

When the Israeli terrorist, along with other masked assailants, broke into the house of Sa’ad and Reham Dawabsheh at 4 am on July 31, 2015, he was clearly on a mission to elevate his name within the ardently racist, extremist society which has made the murder and ethnic cleansing of Palestinians a sort of a divine mission.

Ben Uliel achieved his objectives completely. Not only did he kill Sa’ad and Reham, but their 18-month-old son, Ali, as well. The only surviving member of the family was 4-year-old Ahmed, who was severely burnt.

The murder of the Palestinian family, little Ali in particular, quickly became the source of joy and celebration among Jewish extremists. In December 2015, six months after the murder of the Dawabsheh family, a 25-second video clip that went viral on social media showed a crowd of Israelis celebrating the death of Ali.

The video showed a “room of jumping, dancing men wearing white skullcaps, many with the long sidelocks of Orthodox Jews. Some of them are brandishing guns and knives,” The New York Times reported.

“Two (of the celebrating Israelis) appear to be stabbing pieces of paper they hold in their hands, which the television station identified as pictures of an 18-month-old child, Ali Dawabsheh.”

Despite Israeli police claims that they were ‘investigating’ the hate fest, there is little evidence to suggest that anyone was held accountable for the unmitigated celebration of violence against an innocent family and a toddler. In fact, Israeli State prosecutors later claimed that they had lost the original video of the dancing extremists.

The celebration of Israeli terrorism carried on unabated for years, to the extent that on June 19, 2018, Israeli extremists chanted openly, taunting Ali’s grandfather as he was leaving an Israeli court, with such obscene slogans, as “Where is Ali? Ali’s dead,” “Ali’s on the grill”.

The heinous murder of Ali and his family, and the subsequent trial were added to an array of other events that starkly challenged Israel’s carefully concocted image of being a liberal democracy.

On March 24, 2016, Elor Azaria killed a Palestinian man, Fattah al-Sharif, in cold blood. Al-Sharif was left bleeding on the ground while unconscious after, per Israeli army claim, trying to stab an Israeli soldier.

Azaria received a light sentence of eighteen months, soon to be freed in a massive celebration, like a conquering hero. Israel’s top government officials, including Israeli Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, supported the cold-blooded murderer throughout the trial. It will not come as a complete surprise if Azaria claims a top position in the Israeli government at some point in the future.

The celebration of murderers and terrorists like Ben Uliel and Azaria, is not a new phenomenon in Israeli society. Baruch Goldstein, the Israeli terrorist who killed scores of Palestinian worshippers while kneeling for prayer at Al-Ibrahimi Mosque in Al-Khalil (Hebron) in 1994, is now perceived as a modern martyr, a saint of biblical proportions.

In such cases, when the nature of the crime is so overwhelmingly violent, the extent of which forces itself on global news media, Israel is left with only one option – to use the indictment of ‘Jewish terrorism’ as an opportunity to reinvent itself, its ‘democratic’ system, its ‘transparent’ judicial proceedings, and so on. Meanwhile, Israeli media and its affiliates worldwide labor to describe the collective ‘shock’ and ‘outrage’ felt by ‘law-abiding’, ‘peace-loving’ Israelis.

The murder of the Dawabsheh family, although one of numerous acts of violence perpetrated by Jewish extremists and the Israeli military against innocent Palestinians, is the perfect case in point.

Indeed, a quick look at the numbers and reports produced by the United Nations indicates that the Jewish settlers’ murder of the Palestinian family was not the exception but the norm.

In a report by the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) in June 2018, UN investigators spoke of an exponential rise of Israeli settler violence against Palestinians.

“Between January and April 2018, OCHA documented 84 incidents attributed to Israeli settlers resulting in Palestinian casualties (27 incidents) or in damage to Palestinian property (57 incidents),” the report read. That trend continued, at times markedly increasing, with very little accountability.

The Israeli rights group, Yesh Din, has been following up on the small percentage of settler violence cases that were opened by the Israeli military and police. The group concluded that, “of 185 investigations opened between 2014 and 2017 that reached a final stage, only 21, or 11.4%, led to the prosecution of offenders, while the other 164 files were closed without indictment.”

The reason for this is simple: the hundreds of thousands of Jewish extremists who have been transferred to permanently settle in the occupied territories, an act that starkly violates international law, do not operate outside the colonial paradigm designed by the Israeli government. In some way, they too, are ‘soldiers’, not only because they are armed and coordinate their movement with the Israeli army, but because their ever-expanding settlements lie at the heart of the Israeli occupation and its continued project of ethnic cleansing.

Therefore, Jewish settler violence, like that committed by Ben Uliel, should not be analyzed separately from the violence meted out by the Israeli army, but seen within the larger context of the violent Zionist ideology that governs Israeli society as a whole. It follows that settler violence can only end with the end of the military occupation in the West Bank, East Jerusalem and Gaza, and with the demise of the racist Zionist ideology that spews hatred, embraces racism and rationalizes murder.

May 22, 2020 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Subjugation - Torture | , , | 4 Comments

Is This Controlled Demolition all over Again?

By Gilad Atzmon | May 22, 2020

For years Eco-Enthusiasts, both activists and scientists, have been telling us that the ‘party’ will come to an end. The planet we are stuck on can’t take it for much longer, it is getting too crowded and unbearably warm. Most people didn’t take any real notice of the situation and for a reason. This planet, we tend to think, isn’t really ‘ours,’ we were thrown onto it and for a limited time. Once we grasp the true meaning of our temporality, we begin to acknowledge our terminality. ‘Being in the world’ as such is often the attempt to make our ‘life-time’ into a meaningful event.

Most of us who haven’t been overly  concerned with the ecological activists and their plans to slow us down knew that as long as Big Money runs the world, nothing of a dramatic nature would really happen. In the eyes of Big Money, we tended to think, we, the people, are mere consumers. We understood ourselves as the means that make the rich richer.

Rather unexpectedly, life has undergone a dramatic change. In the present age of Corona, Big Money ‘let’ the world lock itself down. Economies have been sentenced to imminent death. Our significance as consumers somehow evaporated. The emerging alliance we have been detecting between the new leaders of the world economy (knowledge companies) and those who carry the flag of ‘progress’ ‘justice’ and ‘equality’ has evolved into an authoritarian dystopian condition in which robots and algorithms police our speech and elementary freedoms.

How is it that the Left, that had been devoted to opposition to the rich, has so changed its tune? In fact, nothing has happened suddenly. The Left and the Progressive universe have, for some time,  been sustained financially by the rich. The Guardian is an illustrative case of the above. Once a left -leaning paper with a progressive orientation, the Guardian is now openly funded by Bill & Melinda Gates. It shamelessly operates as a mouthpiece for  George Soros: it even allowed Soros to disseminate his apocalyptic pre-Brexit view at the time he himself gambled on Brits’ anti- Brexit vote. By now it is close to impossible to regard the Guardian as a news outlet –  a propaganda outlet for the rich is a more suitable description. But the Guardian is far from alone. Our networks of progressive activists fall into the same trap. Not many of us were surprised to see Momentum, Jeremy Corbyn’s campaign support group within the Labour Party, rallying for the ‘Holocaust Survivor’ and ‘philanthropist’  George Soros. When Corbyn led the Labour Party, I learned to accept that ‘socialists’ putting themselves in the line of fire defending oligarchs, bankers and Wall Street brokers must be the new ‘Left’ reality. We are now  inured to the fact that in the name of ‘progress’ Google has demoted itself  from a great search engine into a hasbara outlet. We are accustomed to Facebook and Twitter dictating their worldview in the name of community standards. The only question is what community they have in mind. Certainty not a tolerant and pluralist western one.

One may wonder what drives this new alliance that divides nearly every Western society? The left’s betrayal is hardly a surprise, yet, the crucial question is why, and out of the blue, did those who had been so successful in locating their filthy hands in our pockets go along with the current destruction of the economy? Surely, suicidal they aren’t.

It occurs to me that what we may be seeing is a controlled demolition all over again. This time it isn’t a building in NYC. It isn’t the destruction of a single industry or even a single class as we have seen before. This time, our understanding of Being as a productive and meaningful adventure is embattled. As things stand, our entire sense of livelihood is at risk.

It doesn’t take a financial expert to realise that in the last few years the world economy in general and western economies in particular have become a fat bubble ready to burst. When economic bubbles burst the outcome is unexpected even though often the culprit or trigger for the crash can be identified. What is unique in the current controlled demolition is the willingness of our compromised political class, the media and in particular Left/Progressive networks to participate in the destruction.

The alliance is wide and inclusive. The WHO, greatly funded by Bill Gates, sets the measures by which we are locked down, the Left and the Progressives fuel the apocalyptic phantasies to keep us hiding in our global attics, Dershowitz tries to rewrite the constitution, big Pharma’s agenda shapes our future and we also hear that Moderna and its leading Israeli doctor is ready to “fix” our genes. Meanwhile we learn that our governments are gearing up to stick a needle in our arms. Throughout this time, the Dow Jones has continued to rise. Maybe in this final stage of capitalism, we the people aren’t needed even as consumers. We can be left to rot at home, our governments seemingly willing to fund this new form of detention.

I believe that it was me who ten years ago coined the popular adage “We Are all Palestinians” – like the Palestinians, I thought at the time, we aren’t even allowed to name our oppressor…

May 22, 2020 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Full Spectrum Dominance | , , | 3 Comments

Biden/Abrams 2020?

By William Stroock | May 22, 2020

The Blue Checkmarks of the American media are an uncreative lot. They lack the basic curiosity once thought necessary to the art of journalism. As a former Obama White House advisor said in 2016, ‘The average reporter we talk to is 27 years old, and their only reporting experience consists of being around political campaigns. That’s a sea change. They literally know nothing.’ The Blue Checkmarks are stenographers really, retelling narratives set by the nation’s two most important newspapers the New York Times and the Washington Post.

This week both papers ran glowing profiles of Stacey Abrams, former member of the Georgia State House and failed gubernatorial candidate. The Times portrayed Abrams as the candidate who could help Biden reach swing voters. But the Washington Post took the science of hagiography to a level thought impossible by physicists. The Post published a 6,000 paeon to Abrams titled “The Power of Stacey Abrams.” Accompanying the piece was a photograph of Abrams wearing a cape and backlit like an angel. And so, the Times and the Post set the narrative: for the Blue Checkmarks, Abrams is the Democrat Party’s savior. Does the Democrat Party ever need a savior?

Democrats have a tremendous problem: their presumptive nominee is Joe Biden. This observer has been saying the same thing about Biden since the summer of 2019 and is aware he sounds like a broken record. But right now, the most important fact of campaign 2020 is that Joe Biden is old and out of touch. The Coronavirus quarantine isn’t helping the man. Biden’s been confined to his basement for two months, campaigning via Twitter, television interviews, and rallies via Zoom. At last week’s MSNBC townhall, geese honked and distracted the 77-year-old. In the background, a pink shirted Secret Service agent wandered about. Biden tried to carry on a conversation with a young Californian who had pre-recorded his question. ‘Hi… thank you for participating,’ the former Vice President said to the recording.

This can’t go on, and the Blue Checkmarks know it. Since the Coronavirus outbreak, they’ve wondered if New York Governor Andrew Cuomo could replace the sunsetting Biden. For weeks they’ve swooned at Cuomo’s daily press briefings in which he played the man in charge and on top of things. But now, Cuomo has come under fire for ordering nursing homes to accept elderly Coronavirus patients. As of this writing, more than 5,000 nursing home residents have died in New York State. Cuomo is now politically vulnerable. We know this because he’s arguing that nursing homes should be immune from prosecution for wrongful deaths. ‘Older people, vulnerable people are going to die from this virus. That is going to happen despite whatever you do,’ declared the man who in March said, ‘I want to be able to say to the people of New York — I did everything we could do. And if everything we do saves just one life, I’ll be happy.’ These days the king of New York seems humble, an unusual position for the three-term governor who, with great braggadocio, portrayed himself as the leader of the anti-Trump resistance. So, Cuomo is unlikely and the Blue Checkmarks are now touting Stacy Abrams.

Already, during this election cycle, the Blue Checkmarks tried elevating a losing candidate to victory. Does anyone else remember Robert Francis O’Rourke? For six months, the former El Paso Congressman and failed senatorial candidate was the heart throb of the Democrat field. The lanky 46 year-old was the reincarnation of Bobby Kennedy, the old liberal lion, tinged with a bit of Robert Redford’s weather beaten and sinewy good looks. He too was the subject of hagiographic profiles, photographed in the Texas desert standing beside his trusty pickup, hands thrust into the back pockets of his blue jeans as he contemplates the progressive task before him. ‘You’re a Rock Star!’- ABC’s Paula Faris gushed during an interview. O’Rourke didn’t win a single delegate.

The Democrat Party faithful see Biden as vessel for his advisors to advance their agenda. Already, the leftwing intelligentsia is saying Biden should pledge himself to a single term. Which makes Biden’s vice-presidential pick exceedingly important. So, who is Stacey Abrams? She served ten years in the Georgia State House rising to the position of Democrat minority leader. In 2018, she ran for the state’s open governor’s seat against Republican Brian Kemp and lost by 55,000 votes. In the aftermath of the election, without evidence, Abrams alleged systematic minority voter suppression and refused to concede. Prominent Democrats everywhere insist Abrams only lost because of minority voter suppression. Since then, she’s been a regular on cable news and is actively campaigning for the vice-presidential slot, telling an interviewer, ‘I would share your concern about not picking a woman of color because women of color, particularly black women, are the strongest part of the Democratic Party — the most loyal, but that loyalty isn’t simply how we vote, it’s how we work.’

Last week, Joe Biden asked Stacey Abrams to appear with him on MSNBC. Host Lawrence O’Donnell asked Biden if he had a reason for inviting Abrams. Did he have an announcement to make? Abrams laughed and her face lit up. Then Biden talked about Abrams’s efforts at minority outreach and voter turnout, rambling on until he ran out of steam. One could actually see Abrams’s face turn to stone.

May 22, 2020 Posted by | Aletho News | , | 3 Comments