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Pearl Harbor Unmasked

Book review by J. Alfred Powell • Unz Review • June 16, 2019

Robert B. Stinnett, Day of Deceit: The Truth about FDR and Pearl Harbor (New York, Free Press, 2000)

A Second World War Navy radioman turned journalist, Robert Stinnett was in the National Archives in Belmont, California, researching a campaign-year picture book on George Bush’s South Pacific wartime navy career in aerial reconnaissance — George Bush: His World War II Years (Washington, D.C., Brassey’s, 1992) — and encountered unindexed duplicate copies of Pearl Harbor radio intercept records of Japanese Navy code transmissions — documentary evidence of what actually happened at Pearl Harbor and how it came about. After eight years of further research and a prolonged case at law under the Freedom of Information Act to obtain partial release of these materials, Stinson published Day of Deceit (2000). A Japanese translation appeared within a year, understandably.

Stinnett demonstrates, on the basis of extensive incontrovertible factual evidence and self-evidently accurate analysis that President Roosevelt oversaw the contrivance and deployment of a closely-guarded secret plan to goad the Japanese into attacking Pearl Harbor and monitor them while they did it. Stinnett hypothesizes that Roosevelt did this in order to precipitate an unwilling American public into supporting intervention in the Second World War, but whatever the motives or purposes, the facts are now abundantly clear. Stinnett establishes and proves his case with voluminous documentary evidence, including forty-seven pages of Appendices [p. 261-308] presenting photographic reproductions of key official records, as well as numerous others reproduced in the body of the text, and 65 pages [309-374] of closely detailed reference notes. This evidence proves Stinnett’s factual assertions, arguments and conclusions. His research files and notes are deposited at the Hoover Institute library at Stanford. Day of Deceit is exemplary documentary historiography. It presents the material testimony on which its analysis and conclusions are based. Its validity will be clear to any fair-minded reader. Stinnett’s book settles and resolves rational, candid, honest, fact-based discussion and debate about the background of the attack on Pearl Harbor.

As Stinnett shows, the plan that eventuated in the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor was set in motion in early October 1940 based on an “eight-action memo, dated October 7, 1940 … by Lieutenant Commander Arthur H. McCollum, head of the Far East desk of the Office of Navy Intelligence.” Of course, it is unlikely that McCollum drafted it on his own initiative, but this is where Stinnett’s paper trail starts. “Its eight actions call for virtually inciting a Japanese attack on American ground, air, and naval forces in Hawaii, as well as on British and Danish colonial outposts in the Pacific region….” [p. 6-8; the memorandum is reproduced on 261-267]:

A. Make an arrangement with Britain for use of British bases in the Pacific, particularly Singapore.
B. Make an arrangement with Holland for the use of base facilities and acquisition of supplies in the Dutch East Indies [now Indonesia].
C. Give all possible aid to the Chinese government of Chiang Kai-shek.
D. Send a division of long-range heavy cruisers to the Orient, Philippines, or Singapore.
E. Send two divisions of submarines to the Orient.
F. Keep the main strength of the US Fleet, now in the Pacific, in the vicinity of the Hawaiian islands.
G. Insist that the Dutch refuse to grant Japanese demands for undue economic concessions, particularly oil.
H. Complete embargo all trade with Japan, in collaboration with a similar embargo imposed by the British Empire.

As the plan unfolded its development was closely monitored through decoded intercepts of Japanese diplomatic and naval radio communications. “McCollum oversaw the routing of communications intelligence to FDR from early 1940 to December 7, 1941 and provided the President with intelligence reports on Japanese military and diplomatic strategy. Every intercepted and decoded Japanese military and diplomatic report destined for the White House went through the Far East Asia section of ONI, which he oversaw. The section served as a clearinghouse for all categories of intelligence reports…. Each report prepared by McCollum for the President was based on radio intercepts gathered and decoded by a worldwide network of American military cryptographers and radio intercept operators…. Few people in America’s government or military knew as much about Japan’s activities and intentions as McCollum.”[8] Knowledge of the plan was closely held, limited to 13 Roosevelt administration members and chief military officers and 21 members of Naval Intelligence and related operations [listed in Appendix E 307-308]. Item C was already US policy when McCollum wrote his memo. Item F was set in motion on October 8, Items A, B and G on October 16, 1940, Item D and E by November 12, 1940. [Chap. 1 n. 8 p. 311-312; 120 ff. etc.].

Meanwhile, also in the fall of 1940, campaigning for a third term in Boston on October 30, President Roosevelt said: “I have said this before, but I shall say it again and again and again: Your boys are not going to be sent into any foreign wars.” On November 1 in Brooklyn he said “I am fighting to keep our people out of foreign wars. And I will keep on fighting.” At Rochester on the 2nd he said “Your national government … is equally a government of peace — a government that intends to retain peace for the American people.” The same day in Buffalo he asserted “Your President says this country is not going to war,” and in Cleveland on the next he declared “The first purpose of our foreign policy is to keep our country out of war.” [William Henry Chamberlin, “How Franklin Roosevelt Lied America Into War,” in Harry Elmer Barnes, Perpetual War for Perpetual Peace (Caldwell, Idaho, Caxton, 1953), Chapter Eight, p. 485-491].

Admiral Richardson, commander of the Pacific Fleet, opposed Roosevelt’s orders [Item F] to station the fleet at Pearl Harbor as putting the fleet at risk, so he was replaced with Admiral Kimmel, with Admiral Anderson of ONI as Kimmel’s third in command at Pearl Harbor, to supervise the radio intercept operation there, unbeknownst to Kimmel. [10-14; 33-34] “Anderson was sent to Hawaii as an intelligence gatekeeper”[36]. When he arrived he established his personal housing well away from Pearl Harbor, out of range of the coming attack. Though he was commander of the seven battleships which bore the brunt of the attack with the loss of over two thousand lives, Admiral Anderson was safe at home on the other side of the mountain when the attack came. [36-37; 244, 247] Meanwhile, the commanders in Hawaii, “Admiral Husband Kimmel and Lieutenant General Walter Short, were deprived of intelligence that might have made them more alert to the risks entailed in Roosevelt’s policy, but they obeyed his direct order of November 27 and 28, 1941: ‘The United States desires that Japan commit the first overt act.’” [6-8] Afterward, they were scape-goated.

In early January 1941 the Japanese decided that in the event of hostilities with the US they would commence with a surprise attack on Pearl Harbor. American intelligence learned of this plan on January 27 [30-32]. On July 21, 1941 Lieutenant Commander McCollum’s Item H lit the fuse. Up through late November the White House continued to block concerted attempts by Japanese diplomats to discuss an accommodation. [On this diplomatic history see Charles Beard , American Foreign Policy in the Making (1946) and President Roosevelt and the Coming of the War (1948); Frederic Rockwell Sanborn, Design For War (1951); and Charles Tansill, Back Door To War (1952).]

Beginning November 16, 1941, radio intercepts revealed the formation of the Japanese fleet near the Kurile Islands north of Japan and from November 26 through the first week of December tracked it across the Pacific to Hawaii [41-59 etc.]. Chief of Naval Operations Admiral Stark (one of the 34 informed participants) ordered Kimmel to dispatch his aircraft carriers with a large escort fleet to deliver planes to Wake and Midway Islands. “On orders from Washington, Kimmel left his oldest vessels inside Pearl Harbor and sent twenty-one modern warships, including his two aircraft carriers, west toward Wake and Midway… With their departure the warships remaining in Pearl Harbor were mostly 27-year-old relics of World War I.” That is, the battleships sunk at Pearl Harbor with their crews were employed as decoys [152-154]. On 22 November 1941, a week after the Japanese fleet began to assemble and four days before it sailed for Oahu, Admiral Ingersoll issued a “Vacant Sea” order that cleared its path of all shipping and on 25 November he ordered Kimmel to withdraw his ships patrolling the area from which the aerial attack would be staged [144-145]. FDR kept close tabs on the plot’s final unfolding while radio intercepts continued to track its voyage toward Hawaii [161-176].

Stinnett comments: “Pearl Harbor’s Battleship Row and its old dilapidated warships presented a mouth-watering target. But it was a major strategic mistake for the Empire. Japan’s 360 warplanes should have concentrated on Pearl Harbor’s massive oil stores … and destroyed the industrial capacity of the Navy’s dry docks, machine shops, and repair facilities”[249]. Six months later, at the battles of Coral Sea (May 4-8, 1942) and Midway (June 4-7), the warships of the Pacific Fleet which were at sea when the attack on Pearl Harbor occurred permanently destroyed the offensive capacity of the Japanese Navy to operate in the eastern Pacific and permanently crippled its defensive capacity in the western Pacific. Thereafter, as informed observers understood, a Japanese attack or invasion of the West Coast of America was a total logistical impossibility. Nevertheless, two months later, the internment of West Coast Japanese American citizens began in August 1942.

The Pearl Harbor coverup began immediately afterward with the court marshals of Admiral Kimmel and General Short, continued through eight Congressional investigations during and after the war, with the purging and withholding of documents and false testimony by participants and others [253-260 & passim; 309-310] and persisted through the Congressional hearings chaired by Strom Thurmond in 1995 [257-258]. At the date of publication (2000) numerous documents were still withheld from Stinnett or released in extensively censored form. But his case is conclusively proven on the basis of the evidence he presents, as any fair-minded reader can see. The only way to refute or debunk it would be to establish that his documentary evidence is forged, and prove it. In face of the character of this evidence, the idea is nonsensical.

A key break for Stinnett’s research was his discovery of duplicate copies of reports of Japanese naval code transmissions from the Pearl Harbor radio-intercept station routed after the war to the Belmont (California) National Archives, and still there long after the copies in the Washington, D.C. archive files had been disappeared. Recent writers pretending to debunk Stinnett’s evidence have resurrected claims that the Japanese naval codes had not been deciphered and that the Japanese fleet maintained radio silence — claims that have been refuted repeatedly for decades. Famously, the radio operator of the American liner Mariposa intercepted repeated signals from the Japanese fleet steaming toward Hawaii and relayed its progressive bearings to the Navy. This was well-known during the war to American seamen of the Pacific merchant marine and is mentioned in published accounts.

The pretense that the Japanese naval and diplomatic codes had not been deciphered was first refuted in a federal court in Chicago in 1943. As her biographer Ralph G. Martin recounts, Cissy Patterson, managing editor of the Washington Times-Herald on December 7, 1941 (and for decades before and after) was opposed to American intervention in another world war — like over 80% of her fellow Americans, including her brother Joe Patterson, publisher of the New York News, and her cousin Robert McCormick, publisher of the Chicago Tribune. Serving in France as a battlefield officer, Robert was wounded, twice gassed, and decorated for valor. His Chicago Tribune, like his cousins’ newspapers and numerous others, especially off the east coast, was vocally anti-interventionist — until Pearl Harbor.

In Cissy (New York, Simon & Schuster, 1979) Martin writes: “As the news of the disaster [at Pearl Harbor] kept coming in [to the Times-Herald’s newsroom], Cissy bitterly asked [her Sunday Editor] Roberts about Roosevelt, ‘Do you suppose he arranged this?’ Later when she learned that American cryptographers had broken the Japanese codes before Pearl Harbor, she was convinced that Roosevelt had known in advance that the Japanese intended to attack”[418]. “The Chicago Tribune, the Times-Herald, and two dozen other papers later printed an article by a Tribune war correspondent which indicated that the United States had prevailed [at Midway] because the Japanese codes had been broken…. The Department of Justice decided to file charges that the Tribune and the Times-Herald had betrayed U.S. military secrets…. Attorney General Francis Biddle felt the disclosure of this breakthrough had been tantamount to treason because it gave the Japanese the chance to change their codes. Waldrop [Times-Herald editor] was called to Chicago to testify before a grand jury… In the middle of the testimony, the Navy disclosed that a Navy censor had passed the Tribune article. Forced to drop the case, Biddle said he ‘felt like a fool.’” [431-432] He wasn’t the only one.

June 15, 2019 Posted by | Book Review, Deception, Timeless or most popular | | 1 Comment

Kushner as a Colonial Administrator: Let’s Talk About The ‘Israeli Model’

By Ramzy Baroud | teleSUR | June 13, 2019

In a TV interview on June 2, on the news docuseries “Axios” on the HBO channel, Jared Kushner opened up regarding many issues, in which his ‘Deal of the Century’ was a prime focus.

The major revelation made by Kushner, President Donald Trump’s adviser and son-in-law, was least surprising. Kushner believes that Palestinians are not capable of governing themselves.

Not surprising, because Kushner thinks he is capable of arranging the future of the Palestinian people without the inclusion of the Palestinian leadership. He has been pushing his so-called ‘Deal of the Century’ relentlessly while including in his various meets and conferences countries such as Poland, Brazil and Croatia, but not Palestine.

Indeed, this is what transpired at the Warsaw conference on ‘peace and security’ in the Middle East. The same charade, also led by Kushner, is expected to be rebooted in Bahrain on June 25.

Much has been said about the subtle racism in Kushner’s words, reeking with the stench of old colonial discourses where the natives were seen as lesser, incapable of rational thinking beings who needed the civilized ‘whites’ of the western hemisphere to help them cope with their backwardness and inherent incompetence.

Kushner, whose credentials are merely based on his familial connections to Trump and family friendship with Israeli Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, is now poised to be the colonial administrator of old, making and enforcing the law while the hapless natives have no other option but to either accommodate or receive their due punishment.

This is not an exaggeration. In fact, according to leaked information concerning Kushner’s ‘Deal of the Century,’ and published in the Israeli daily newspaper, Israel Hayom, if Palestinian groups refuse to accept the US-Israeli diktats, “the US will cancel all financial support to the Palestinians and ensure that no country transfers funds to them.”

In the HBO interview, Kushner offered the Palestinians a lifeline. They could be considered capable of governing themselves should they manage to achieve the following: “a fair judicial system … freedom of the press, freedom of expression, tolerance for all religions.”

The fact that Palestine is an occupied country, subject in every possible way to Israel’s military law, and that Israel has never been held accountable for its 52-year occupation seems to be of no relevance whatsoever, as far as Kushner is concerned.

On the contrary, the subtext in all of what Kushner has said in the interview is that Israel is the antithesis to the unquestionable Palestinian failure. Unlike Palestine, Israel needs to do little to demonstrate its ability to be a worthy peace partner.

While the term ‘US bias towards Israel’ is as old as the state of Israel itself, what is hardly discussed is the specific of that bias, the decidedly condescending, patronizing and, often, racist view that US political classes have of Palestinians – and all Arabs and Muslims, for that matter; and the utter infatuation with Israel, which is often cited as a model for democracy, judicial transparency and successful ‘anti-terror’ tactics.

According to Kushner a ‘fair judicial system’ is a condition sine qua non to determine a country’s ability to govern itself. But is the Israeli judicial system “fair” and “democratic”?

Israel does not have a single judicial system, but two. This duality has, in fact, defined Israeli courts from the very inception of Israel in 1948. This de facto apartheid system openly differentiates between Jews and Arabs, a fact that is true in both civil and criminal law.

“Criminal law is applied separately and unequally in the West Bank, based on nationality alone (Israeli versus Palestinian), inventively weaving its way around the contours of international law in order to preserve and develop its ‘(illegal Jewish) settlement enterprise’,” Israeli scholar, Emily Omer-Man, explained in her essay ‘Separate and Unequal’.

In practice, Palestinians and Israelis who commit the exact same crime will be judged according to two different systems, with two different procedures: “The settler will be processed according to the Israeli Penal Code (while) the Palestinian will be processed according to military order.”

This unfairness is constituent of a massively unjust judicial apparatus that has defined the Israeli legal system from the onset. Take the measure of administrative detention as an example. Palestinians can be held without trial and without any stated legal justification. Tens of thousands of Palestinians have been subjected to this undemocratic ‘law’ and hundreds of them are currently held in Israeli jails.

It is ironic that Kushner raised the issue of freedom of the press, in particular, as Israel is being derided for its dismal record in that regard. Israel has reportedly committed 811 violations against Palestinian journalists since the start of the ‘March of Return’ in Gaza in March 2018. Two journalists – Yaser Murtaja and Ahmed Abu Hussein – were killed and 155 were wounded by Israeli snipers.

Like the imbalanced Israeli judicial system, targeting the press is also a part of a protracted pattern. According to a press release issued by the Palestinian Journalists Union last May, Israel has killed 102 Palestinian journalists since 1972.

The fact that Palestinian intellectuals, poets and activists have been imprisoned for Facebook and other social media posts should tell us volumes about the limits of Israel’s freedom of press and expression.

It is also worth mentioning that in June 2018, the Israeli Knesset voted for a bill that prohibits the filming of Israeli soldiers as a way to mask their crimes and shelter them from any future legal accountability.

As for freedom of religion, despite its many shortcomings, the Palestinian Authority hardly discriminates against religious minorities. The same cannot be said about Israel.

Although discrimination against non-Jews in Israel has been the raison d’être of the very idea of Israel, the Nation-State Law of July 2018 further cemented the superiority of the Jews and inferior status of everyone else.

According to the new Basic Law, Israel is “the national home of the Jewish people” only and “the right to exercise national self-determination is unique to the Jewish people.”

Palestinians do not need to be lectured on how to meet Israeli and American expectations, nor should they ever aspire to imitate the undemocratic Israeli model. What they urgently need, instead, is international solidarity to help them win the fight against Israeli occupation, racism and apartheid.

June 15, 2019 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Full Spectrum Dominance | , , , | Leave a comment

EU Blasted for Ever Closer Co-Operation with Terror Regime in Israel

By Stuart Littlewood | American Herald Tribune | June 13, 2019

155 European Researchers and academics have delivered a stinging rebuke to Federica Mogherini, High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs & Security Policy and Vice-President of the European Commission, and Carlos Moedas, European Commissioner for Science, Research & Innovation.

In a beautifully crafted letter they express the outrage felt throughout the world, and especially in European countries including the UK, at the EU’s policy of rewarding the war crimes and crimes against humanity committed by Israel. Each new act of unspeakable brutality, each new onslaught of disproportionate force against civilians brings fresh privileges, fresh co-operation, fresh embraces from an enthusiastic EU elite.

Perhaps the most shameful thing about Europe’s relations with Israel is the EU-Israel Association Agreement which came into force in 2000. This is about special trading and other privileges and its purpose is to promote (1) peace and security, (2) shared prosperity through, for example, the creation of a free trade zone, and (3) cross-cultural rapprochement. It governs not only EU-Israel relations but Israel’s relations with the EU’s other Mediterranean partners, including the Palestinian National Authority.

To enjoy the Association’s privileges Israel undertook to show “respect for human rights and democratic principles” as set out as a general condition in Article 2, which says: “Relations between the Parties, as well as all the provisions of the Agreement itself, shall be based on respect for human rights and democratic principles, which guides their internal and international policy and constitutes an essential element of this Agreement.

“Essential” being the operative word. Respecting human rights and democratic principles is not optional. Article 2 allows steps to be taken to enforce the contractual obligations regarding human rights and to dissuade partners from pursuing policies and practices that disrespect those rights. The Agreement also requires respect for self-determination of peoples and fundamental freedoms for all.

Well, that’s a joke for a start. Given Israel’s contempt for such principles the EU, had it been an honourable group, would have enforced Article 2 and not let matters slide. They would have suspended Israel’s membership until the regime fully complied. Israel relies heavily on exports to Europe so the EU could by now have forced an end to the brutal occupation of the Holy Land instead of always rewarding it.

The signatories to the letter to Mogherini and Moedas aptly quote the warning by Israel’s own human rights group B’Tselem: “If the international community does not come to its senses and force Israel to abide by the rules that are binding to every state in the world, it will pull the rug out from under the global effort to protect human rights in the post-WW2 era.

Here is that excellent letter:

To Ms. Federica Mogherini – High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy

To Mr Carlos Moedas – European Commission, DG for Research and Innovation

Brussels, June 4, 2019

Re: Letter from European researchers and academics concerning Israel’s participation in Horizon Europe

Dear Ms. Federica Mogherini, Dear Mr. Moedas,

We researchers and academics from Europe are writing to you in order to express our deep concern about the participation of Israel and its military companies in EU Research Programs. While we write, new Israeli raids flare up and the smoldering remnant of Gaza protesters of the Great March of Return, already forgotten and forsaken. More than 270 unarmed civilians were killed during the March of return, including women, children and persons with disabilities and thousands more were injured [28.939, of whom 7.247 by live fire]. They were only demanding their rights enshrined in international law: end of the illegal blockade and for the right of return to their ancestral homes from which they were expelled.

A report of the United Nation’s Independent Commission of Inquiry published earlier this year concluded that the Israeli army might have committed war crimes and crimes against humanity by indiscriminately killing health workers, journalists and unarmed protesters who did not pose any imminent threats to the soldiers.

Relentless violence rages again after 11 years of inhumane siege and three military assaults that shattered the fabric of normal life. Gaza is declared to be uninhabitable by 2020 according to a report by the UN, but this “environmentally defined” deadline reflects only the intentionality of an imposed series of emergencies, followed each time by a further decrease in health, energy, food independence and commerce after each episode of armed aggression since 2007.

The hermetic siege combined with the systematic large scale military destruction is slowly strangling nearly the two million inhabitants of Gaza. None of the basic civilian infrastructure such as hospitals and power plants, was ever sufficiently rebuilt after each of the three military assaults due to severe restrictions by the blockade. Electricity is available only a few hours a day, 98% of water is not drinkable, and many hospitals periodically stop functioning due to lack of medication, spare parts of machinery, electricity and fuel. Permission for patients to leave in order to receive life-saving treatment elsewhere has been continually declining in time. Tools for education, number of teachers, and rebuilding of schools are severely impaired. The inhabitants of Gaza have been consistently denied basic human rights and human dignity.

The disproportionate use of force on the civilians amounting to war crimes has also been systematic throughout all, long and short term, military operations, including the almost daily assaults to fishermen and agricultural workers.

These facts have been meticulously documented in authoritative reports by the UN and human rights organizations and widely condemned by the international community. Yet Israel’s policies of aggression and repression have continued.

This ongoing impunity is allowing Gaza, the world’s largest open air prison, to be used as a military testfield. In each offensive Israel deployed, tested and perfected new high-tech military weapons and surveillance systems. These new cutting edge high-tech products are exhibited and sold as “battle-tested”, an exclusive label Israeli home land security industry boasts. Israel became the world’s top arms exporter per capita.This grave violation of human rights is thus highly profitable for Israel’s war industry disclosing another side of the claim of “only self-defense” and the interests beyond the lack of measure in the aggressions on Palestinians of Gaza.

Nonethelss, in spite of continual and serious breaches of international law and violation of human rights, and regardless of the commitment for upholding human rights of European countries, Israel enjoys an exceptionally privileged status in dealing with Europe also through the Association Agreement and has been receiving grants from the European Commission in the area of research and innovation (FP7 and its successor Horizon 2020).

Funds are granted even to Israeli arms producers such as Elbit Systems and Israel Aerospace Industries Ltd. (IAI), the producers of lethal drones that were used in the Gaza military assaults against civilians, together with numerous academic institutions that have close ties with Israeli military industry.

We appeal to the European Union to impose a comprehensive military embargo on Israel, as long as Israel continues to blatantly violate human rights. We are deeply disturbed that public funds contributed by European tax payers are channeled to a country that not only disregards human rights but also uses most advanced knowledge and technology for the very violation of human rights. We believe that knowledge and innovation should serve progress in humanity and society, not to develop dual use or military research of a country that has a record history of grave human rights violations. This is not compatible with the values Europe upholds.

In 2017 more than 150 European trade unions, political parties, human rights organizations and faith groups from over 16 European countries issued a call urging the EU to uphold its legal responsibilities and exclude Israeli military companies from EU Framework Programs.

We support Amnesty International call for a military embargo on Israel issued last year following the attacks on the unarmed protesters of the Great March of Return using maiming bullets and brutal means by the Israeli army, unnecessary in that context.

Youth of Gaza appealed to you to stop funding Israeli manufacturers of weapons and surveillance system that guard their open-air prison, maimed them and destroyed their future. In support of their outcry we call upon European Union and European Commission to suspend the Association Agreement with Israel and exclude Israel as an eligible partner for Horizon Europe (successor of Horizon 2020), as long as it refuses to comply with the rules of international law. We also share the concern of B’Tselem, Israeli human rights organization, which stated “If the international community does not come to its senses and force Israel to abide by the rules that are binding to every state in the world, it will pull the rug out from under the global effort to protect human rights in the post-WWII era.”

Signatories*:

1.Dr. Nozomi Takahashi, Center for Inflammation Research, VIB-Ghent University, Belgium
2.Prof. Marc Van Ranst,Department of Microbiology, Immunology and Transplantation, KU Leuven,Belgium
3.Dr. Leander Meuris, Medical Biotechnology, VIB-Ghent University, Belgium
4.Prof. Tarek Meguid,
5.Prof. Em. John Dugard, Universities of Leiden and the Witwatersrand (UN Special Rapporteur onthe human rights situation in the Occupied Palestinian Territory 2001-2008)
6.Prof. Em. Herman De Ley, Ghent University, Belgium
7.Dr. Andrea Balduzzi, Università di Genova, Italy
8.Prof.Giuliano Donzellini, University of Genua, Italy
9.Prof.Sergio Morra,University of Genua, Italy
10.Prof. Paolo Bartolini, University of Genua, Italy
11.Dr.Angela Waldegg, Austria
12.Prof. Salvatore Palidda,University of Genua, Italy
13.Andrea Sbarbaro,office worker (psychologist),University of Genua, Italy
14.Prof.Marcello Maneri, University of Milano-Bicocca, Italy
15.Dr.Syksy Räsäne, University of Helsinki, Finland
16.PhD. Prof. Haseeb Shehadeh, University of Helsinki, Finland
17.Paola Manduca, Former Associate Professor Genetics,University of Genoa, Italy
18.Prof. Em.Giorgio Forti, Unuversità degli Studi di Milkano, Italy
19.Adjunct Professor Pertti Multanen, University of Tampere, Finland
20.Dr. Angela Flynn, University College Cork, Ireland
21.Docente ordinario Giuseppe Mosconi, Università di Padova, Italy
22.Prof.Anna Boato, Uniiversità di Genova, Italy
23.Dr. Ronit Lentin, Trinity College Dublin, Ireland,
24.Mathias Urban, Desmond Chair of Early Childhood Education, Dublin City University, Ireland
25.Prof. Sancia Gaetani, Già Istituto Nazionale Nutrizione, Italy
26.James Roche, Lecturer,Technoligical University Dublin, Ireland
27.Prof. Angelo Baracca,University of Florence, Italy
28.Prof.Giorgio M. Giallocosta, University of Genoa, Italy
29.Prof PhD Alessandro Bianchi, Department Informatics – Univ. Bari, Italy
30.Em. Prof Elisabetta Donini, University of Turin, Italy
31.Prof. Luca Queirolo Palmas,University of Genoa, Italy
32.Rosella Franconi, Senior scientist, Italy
33.Pediatric surgeon Bruno Cigliano, University “Federico II” Naples-Italy
34.Prof. Vittorio Agnoletto,University of Milan, Italy
35.Em. Prof.Andrea Frova, Università di Roma “La Sapienza”, Physics Dept, Italy
36.Em. Prof. Mariapiera Marenzana, Ministry of Education, Italy
37.Massimo Di Rosa, Italy
38.Prof. Iain Chambers, University of Naples, “Orientale”, Italy
39.Dr. Paola Rivetti, Dublin City University, Ireland
40.Prof. Lidia Curti, University of Naples, Italy
41.Phd. Kati Juva, Helsinki University Central Hospital, Finland
42.Hessel Christiane, Epouse de l’Ambassadeur de France Stéphane Hessel, France
43.Phd. Bruno Lapauw, Ghent University, Belgium
44.Prof. Matthieu Lenoir, Ghent University, Belgium
45.Prof. Stef Craps, Ghent University, Belgium
46.Prof. Dr. De Baerdemaeker Luc, Ghent University, Belgium
47.Ana Cabal, University of Antwerp, Belgium
48.Dr. Kristina Mercelis, Belgium
49.Arch assistant. Geert Pauwels, Vrije Universiteit Brussel, Belgium
50.R. Van Laere, Royal academy for Archaeology of Belgium
51.Prof. Karel Arnaut, KU Leuven – IMMRC, Belgium
52.Prof. Dr.Willie van Peer, University of Munich, Austria
53.Prof. Dr. Em. Frans Daems,University of Antwerp, Belgium
54.Omar Jabary Salamanca, Ghent University, Belgium
55.Prof. Jan Delrue, KU Leuven University, Belgium
56.Em. Prof. Christian Kesteloot, KU Leuven University, Belgium
57.Prof. Em. Aviel Verbruggen, University of Antwerp, Belgium
58.Medical student Serhat Yildirim,Ghent University , Belgium
59.Prof. Emer. Piet Mertens, KU Leuven, Belgium
60.Associate Professor Nadia Fadil, KU Leuven, Belgium
61.Em. Prof. Dr. Patric Jacobs, Ghent University, Geology Deparment, Belgium
62.Honourary Professor Michel Vanhoorne, Ghent University, Belgium
63.Docent Jan Wyns, Belgium
64.Em. Prof. Marc David, Universiteit Antwerpen, Belgium
65.Prof. Pieter Rombouts, Ghent University, Belgium
66.Mireille Gleizes, Belgium
67.Dr. Barbara Van Dyck, University of Sussex, UK
68.Em. Prof. Claude Veraart, University of Louvain (UCL), Belgium
69.Professeur Honoraire Pierre Gillis, Université de Mons, Belgium
70.Researcher Patrick Italiano, University of Liege, Belgium
71.Professeur Ordinaire Honoraire André Gob, Université de Liège, Belgium
72.Researcher Jacques Moriau, ULB, Belgium
73.Philosopher Marc Vandepitte, Technische Scholen Mechelen, Belgium
74.Abdessalam Faraj, Belgium
75.PhD Gillet S. University of Namur, Belgium
76.Em. Prof. Mateo Alaluf, Université Libre de Bruxelles, Belgium
77.Prof. Em. Biesemans Monique, Vrije Universiteit Brussel, Belgium
78.Em. Prof. Fred Louckx, Vrije Universiteit Brussel, Belgium
79.Prof. Marc Jacquemain, University of Liege, Belgium
80.Prof. Germain Marc, Université de Lille, France
81.Professeur-chercheur Lucienne Strivay, Université de Liège, Belgium
82.Prof. Gilles-Maurice de Schryver, Ghent University, Belgium
83.Researcher Andrew Crosby, Université libre de Bruxelles, Belgium
84.Prof. Bert Cornillie, KU Leuven, Belgium
85.Docent Dario Giugliano, Accademia di Belle Arti di Napoli, Italy
86.Prof. de Beer Daniel, Université Saint-Louis, Belgium
87.Researcher M Louise Carels, Université de Liège, Belgium
88.Prof. Victor Ginsburgh, Université libre de Bruxelles, Belgium
89.Em. Prof. Heinz D. Hurwitz, Université Libre de Bruxelles, Belgium
90.M.A. Maria Aurora De Angelis, SOAS University of London, UK
91.Dr. Jef Peeters, KU Leuven, Belgium
92.Em. Prof. Magda Devos, University of Ghent, Belgium
93.Em. Prof. Norbert Van den Bergh, Gent University, Belgium
94.Em. Prof. Stefan Kesenne, University of Antwerp, Belgium
95.Prof. Dr. Em. Madeline Lutjeharms, Vrije Universiteit Brussel, Belgium
96.Marie Scheirlinck, Belgium
97.Koen Verrept, VUB, Belgium
98.Prof. Roberto Beneduce, University of Turin, Italy
99.Prof. Patricia Willson, Université de Liège, Belgium
100.Em. Prof. Christiane Schomblond, Université Libre de Bruxelles, Belgium
101.Em. Prof. Florimond De Smedt, Vrije Universiteit Brussel, Belgium
102.Professeur Honoraire Mormont Marc, Université de Liège, Belgium
103.Dr. Zahidi, University of Antwerpen, Belgium
104.PhD Leena Saraste, Finland
105.Em. Prof. P. Marage, Université Libre de Bruxelles, Belgium
106.Em. Prof. Michel Gevers, Université catholique de Louvain, Belgium
107.Senior Research Associate Giselle Corradi, Ghent University, Belgium
108.Tiziana Terranova, Italy
109.Honorary Prof. Albert Martens, Katholieke Universiteit Leuven, Belgium
110.Em. Prof. Vandermotten Christian, Université Libre de Bruxelles, Belgium
111.Prof. Jean-Claude Gregoire, Université libre de Bruxeles, Belgium
112.Researcher Xavier May, Université Libre de Bruxelles, Belgium
113.Dr. Duez Colette, University of Liege, Belgium
114.Phd Tanneke Herklots, the Netherlands,
115.Em. Prof. Marc De Meyere, Gent University, Belgium
116. Researcher Antonio Mazzeo, Italy
117. Prof. Michele Carducci, UniSalento – Lecce, Italy
118. Prof. Carine Defoort, KU Leuven, Belgium
119. Dr. Chiara Cardelli, Institute for Quantum Optics and Quantum Information Vienna, Austria
120. Prof. Em. Pieter Saey, Gent University, Belgium
121. Independent scholar Celeste Ianniciello, Italy
122. Em. Prof. Jonathan Rosenhead, London School of Economics, UK
123. Prof. Dr. Em. Erik Van der Straeten, Belgium
124. Prof. James Dickins, University of Leeds, UK
125. Dr. Tajul Islam, University of Leeds, UK
126. Dr. Barry Heselwood, University of Leeds, UK
127. Patrik Lasure, Pax Christi Vlaanderen, Belgium
128. Wim Nerinckx, Belgium
129. René Weemaels, Belgium
130. André Posman, Belgium
131. Technician Kelly Lemeire, University of Ghent, Belgium
132. Em. Prof. Schomblond Christiane, Université Libre de Bruxelles, Belgium
133. Dr. Gie Van Den Berghe, University Gent, Belgium
134. Rasha Soliman, University of Leeds, UK
135. Simona Antonova, UMC Utrecht, the Netherlands
136. PhD Michail Mamantopoulos, Belgium
137. Dr. Tom Moerenhout, Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies, Switzerland
138. Prof. Dirk Vandermeulen, KU Leuven, Belgium
139. Em. Prof. Heinz Hurwitz, Université Libre Bruxelles, Belgium
140. Sénateur Honoraire Galand Pierre, Belgium
141. Prof. Megan Povey, University of Leeds, UK
142. Branch President UCL UCU Sean Wallis, University College London, UK
143. Dr. M Akhtar, University of Leeds, UK
144. Tom Hickey, University of Brighton, UK
145. Dr. Karen Evans, University of Liverpool, UK
146. Dr. Anne Alexander, University of Cambridge, UK
147. Dr Anandi Ramamurthy, Sheffield Hallam University, UK
148. Prof. Franco Montanari, University of Genoa, Italy
149. Dr. Stephanie Kourula, Belgium
150. Em. Prof. Chris Roberts, University of Manchester, UK
151. Researcher- PhD student Ainhoa Ruiz Benedicto, Centre Delàs d’Estudis per la Pau, Spain
152. Tica Font, Centre Delàs d’Estudis per la Pau, Spain
153. Researcher Edgard Vega, Centre Delàs d’Estudis per la Pau, Spain
154. Ph Dr. Retired Assistant Professor Xavier Bohigas, Uinversitat Politècnica de Catalunya, Catalonia-Spain
155. Prof. Jan Dumolyn, University of Ghent, Belgium

* Institutions are added for identification purposes only. All signatories have signed the letter in a personal capacity

June 15, 2019 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism | , , , , | Leave a comment

An Electronic Engineer in Orwell’s Britain

By Eve Mykytyn | June 13, 2019

Dr. Ali was dismissed from his job at the University of Essex for alleged anti Semitism. The charges stemmed from his opposition to a new campus society, a branch of the Zionist organization, the Union of Jewish Students (UJS) and from four of the many posts Dr Ali has made to Facebook over the last ten years. For more: SEE. Dr. Ali’s story makes plain that although the University claimed to dismiss him for anti Semitism, in fact he was dismissed for anti Zionism. The following interview with Dr Ali will be one of the first articles in which he will be able to tell his side of the story, which differs in important ways from the story told in the British press.

EM: Can you give us a brief bio, including where you grew up and your academic background?

MA: My family moved to London from the then newly independent country of Bangladesh in 1975 when I was seven,. We came as refugees, we had lost 22 members of our family including my elder brother who was murdered when he was barely thirteen. My father was a Professor of History and a Barrister (Lincoln’s Inn).

I grew up in the eastern suburbs of London and was educated at Chigwell School in Essex. I earned my PhD in Electronic Engineering at King’s College London. I have spent most of my career as a university lecturer in the UK.

EM: How did you get involved in the debate over the new Jewish society? Were you opposed to the formation of any Jewish group?

MA: At the University of Essex, student union members are invited by email to vote on any new student society, and a favorable vote by a majority is required for formation. Before a vote, the proposed society must clearly state its aims and objectives.

I read UJS’s manifesto and did not agree with their zealous promotion of Zionism and the state of Israel. That was my only concern. I was not voting against Jews, Judaism or their culture. When I was a student, I voted against the formation of political Islamic societies even though I am a Muslim.

The same concerns regarding the political Zionist basis of the UJS were raised by Student Union Committee Members, the University Amnesty Society, the University Palestinian Solidarity Group and 240 other students. I would like to stress that I did not and would not vote against the formation of a Jewish Society that was not politically Zionist.

EM: Did any of your students complain of anti-Semitism? Did the issue ever come up in one of your classes?

MA: I never discuss religion or politics in my lectures nor have the issues of Zionism or anti Semitism ever come up in any of my classes during my career. There has never been any complaint made against me by any student at the University or at any university at which I have taught.

Two former students, one a 50+ year old ex-British soldier, wrote a letter to Human Resources at the University defending me and stating that I was always inclusive, never discussed religion or politics and that I was an excellent lecturer. The other, a woman who is an ex- US marine who heard about my case, wrote to the Vice Chancellor directly. Neither letter was taken into consideration by the University.

 EM: Why do you think you were singled out? Were there other opponents of the UJS?

MA: I made a comment on the University Palestinian Solidarity Facebook page that Zionists were trying to create a society at our University. Someone asked why I was against Jews. I replied that I was not against Jews, their religion or their culture. I was opposed to the Zionist ideology presented in the society’s manifesto. In my 10 years on Facebook, I have never posted anything supporting the destruction of the state of Israel.

Obviously, I was singled out. The media falsely portrayed me as a ringleader of the 240 students who voted against the UJS. I did not urge these students to vote ‘no.’ I am a part-time Bangladeshi lecturer without powerful connections, and a bearded Muslim Asian – I was a useful scapegoat for their witch hunt.

The media failed to report that the vote was cancelled because of the 240 ‘no’ votes. After that, the UJS changed their manifesto and softened their wording regarding Israel and Zionism. They denied making this change, even though some students had screenshots of the two different manifestos.

I was asked to be part of a second vote, but I declined and did not vote. Part way thorough the second vote, the Vice Chancellor cancelled the election and created UJS as a “University” society. Later on, the Student Union revealed  that ‘“some” of the 600 votes in favor of the UJS had been cast “externally” by non-students.

The University tribunal charged me based on the UJS’s second less political manifesto, to which I never objected nor even voted on. Despite my vehement objection the University failed to take notice that it was the first manifesto to which I and others objected.

EM: So all you did was post an objection to the UJS based on their first, more extreme manifesto and then vote against it?

 MA: Yes

EM: What about the Facebook posts they claimed were anti Semitic?

MA: The tribunal considered six posts and dismissed two of them. Until the tribunal no one had ever complained about a post of mine and Facebook never warned or took any action against me. The posts they considered were as follows.

1.  A post from smoloko.com I made four years ago that a French police officer allegedly killed in terror attacks in Paris was actually a Mossad agent. There are many such theories about the 2015 attacks and I posted it for discussion purposes.

2. In 2016 I posted that 50,000 Jews in New York protested Israel’s policies and that the event was not really covered by the media. In the tribunal, I pointed out that my post clearly distinguished between Jews and Zionists

3. Posted on 1 August 2018 and clearly labeled as ‘revisionist history’ was a quote from Edgar Steele that the number of Holocaust survivors receiving pensions exceeded the number of Jews in Europe before the Holocaust.

4. A post on 17 January 2019 stating that the Jews put Palestinians in concentration camps. The Tribunal said I was comparing Jews to Nazis by the use of the word “concentration.” My Jewish Union rep. objected, pointing out that it was the British who originated the term ‘concentration camp’ when they used them in South Africa.

EM: You are not anti Semitic but you do have problems with the behavior of the state of Israel? Who defended you and what procedure did the University follow in making its decision?

MA: I am not anti-Semitic and the investigation and the tribunal both found that I, as a person, was not anti-Semitic.  I do have problems with all kinds of oppression; against humans, animals or the environment. As I told the tribunal, I have criticised almost all governments. The tribunal brushed aside my criticism of Israel’s oppressive activities. My opinions were backed up by reports from the UN, the Red Cross, Israeli human rights organisations and newspapers like Haaretz.

I was defended personally by one University Union member,  a Professor who is Jewish, but who has not given me permission to reveal his name. He told the tribunal that he believed that neither I nor my posts were anti-Semitic even though he did not agree with some of the posts.

Prominent Jewish voice for Peace (JVP) member, Prof. Haim Bresheeth, an Israeli-British film maker and a Professor at the University of London, wrote to the Vice Chancellor on my behalf. He made clear the distinction between Zionism and Judaism and wrote that opposing Zionism or criticizing Israel is not anti Semitism. In addition, renowned Professor, Norman Finkelstein, wrote a letter of support for me.

The University claimed my case had been investigated by “independent” investigator Nigel Youngman. My objections to the lack of actual investigation by Mr. Youngman were totally disregarded by the tribunal. He did not interview any of the key witnesses, not the 240 students who voted no, not a single member of the University’s Amnesty Society or Palestinian Society, and not members or staff at the Student Union.  Youngman never asked anyone why he objected to the first manifesto or why there were two manifestos. When he spoke to the tribunal he read from the second less extreme manifesto as if that was the one to which I had objected, although I had repeatedly told him that my reaction was to the first manifesto.

The University’s rules provided me the right to present a witness. I informed the tribunal that I intended to bring Prof. Bresheeth, and although I followed their procedural rules, the tribunal denied me my right to a witness claiming only a certain date was available as the tribunal was to be attended by “very important” people.

I knew as soon as the tribunal began that the University intended to dismiss me. They followed their procedures only to the extent that they would not affect the preordained outcome. For example, Prof. Andrew Le Sueur, who acted as prosecutor, instructed the tribunal to ignore the letters from Prof Finkelstein and Prof Bresheeth and not to take JVP’s statement against Zionism into consideration. That made it clear the tribunal was a farce, intended to allow them to dismiss me while pretending to the media that I had been given ‘due process.’

The major problem I faced was that the University treated Zionism as just a harmless Jewish belief. I do not know why they are so ignorant. The University would not listen when I tried to explain that there is a difference between Judaism and Zionism and that many people, including Jews, object to Israel’s actions but are not anti Semitic. I am happy that there were many Jews from JVP who came to my defense.

EM: The University advised you not to speak to the press. Do you now think that advice was for your benefit?

MA: I should not have listened to them since I believe the decision to dismiss me was made well before the hearing. From the beginning, I wanted to set the record straight and explain that I was not at all the person the media portrayed. I had written a careful apology to the University and, contrary to my expectations, the University did not share either my position or my apology.

EM: What have been the other effects of the dismissal? Will you be able to get another academic job in the UK?

MA: I have been dismissed from all my other part-time positions, including my work for St John Ambulance. When St John first investigated the allegations, I was found not to be anti Semitic. After the University dismissed me, St John fired me.

I have lost all sources of income, a financial loss I am not in a position to cover. It seems this is the penalty imposed upon opponents of Zionism.

I am not sure if I can find another job in the UK let alone an academic job. I could only be employed by someone who is willing to stand up to Zionist bullying and intimidation.

EM: Did you receive any hate mail?

MA: Yes I received a barrage of xenophobic, Islamophobic hate emails, threatening death to my family and me. Careful examination revealed that all the emails originated from only 14 unique email addresses. The British police are currently investigating these threatening emails.

In addition, there was a smear campaign against me as nearly all the 65 pages of British newspaper and online articles were essentially copied from an unfavorable and inaccurate article in the Jewish Chronicle.

EM: Was a police complaint or legal action filed against you?

MA: No police action has been taken against me, even though some of the hate emails claimed that I was being reported to the police for hate crimes and anti Semitism.

EM: Has your family faced discrimination in the UK? Is there is a double standard?

MA: Yes, my children have faced terrible discrimination. Some boys at his school threw my eldest son on the ground and tried to force feed him pork. He was called many horrible names including ‘terrorist.’ His school took no action against the boys who assaulted my son.

There is a clear double standard at the University of Essex. Two examples:

A Muslim Bangladeshi staff member was threatened by his immediate boss, a Latvian, who said any Muslim who came to his country would be murdered by him. He was reported but the University has done nothing in response to the threat.

A Muslim woman, a student, was harassed by her flatmate, a staff member of the University’s Law School. He told her: “your religion will make you bomb a building.” In front of a witness he said, “I can do whatever I want with you and I will not be punished for it.” She suffered death threats, physical abuse, and eventually left the school. A police lawsuit was shelved for lack of evidence despite a witness and a bruised arm. The University did not see that he breached any code of conduct, instead the University is doing everything to protect this staff member and have threatened a lawsuit if his name is revealed. More information can be found at this link: https://www.facebook.com/516992240/posts/10157873235557241?sfns=mo

The University of Essex that claims to have ‘zero tolerance to hate’ seems to apply that standard based upon who the victim is.

June 15, 2019 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Mainstream Media, Warmongering | , , , | Leave a comment

Pompeo Unveils New US Strategy of Attributing Blame for Attacks Before They Have Happened

By Rob Sloan | The Blog Mire | June 14, 2019

Allergy Warning: May contain traces of Nuts & Boltons

The US Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo, has blamed Iran for the deaths of 23 Swedish sailors in an attack on an oil tanker in the Strait of Hormuz. However, in what is said to be an unusual move, the incident referred to by Mr Pompeo hasn’t yet happened and no-one has died. Nonetheless, Mr Pompeo was adamant that Iran must bear responsibility for the future incident, and has vowed a strong response:

“It is the assessment of the US Government that Iran will be responsible for this terrible incident, which could well happen in the next few days or weeks. This possible future attack is a threat to international peace and security, a blatant assault on the freedom of navigation, and an unacceptable escalation of tension by Iran. We cannot let this possible attack go unanswered.”

Whilst making an accusation before an incident has taken place took some by surprise, according to an unnamed official in the Trump administration, it is a necessary step to defend the international rules based system from the increasing lawlessness of a number of states around the world:

“For some time, we’ve been making intelligence assessments just a few hours after incidents, long before the evidence is in, and using words like ‘probable’ and ‘highly likely’. But while this has been a useful tool, it’s become clear recently that it really doesn’t go far enough. What the Secretary of State said today is a necessary step, and it sends out a clear message to our adversaries: not only do we not need any evidence before we make our accusations; from now on we put you on notice that we don’t even need an incident.”

The move has been welcomed by the British Government, who issued a statement about the non-attack on the Swedish Tanker.

“It is almost certain that a branch of the Iranian military — the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps — will be responsible for the possible attack on the Swedish oil tanker which could happen at some point. No other state or non-state actor could plausibly be responsible for such future attacks. We condemn in the strongest terms what it is highly likely that Iran almost certainly might do, and we stand shoulder to shoulder with the US in condemning this destabilising behaviour that Iran could potentially take.”

According to a US State Department official, Mr Pompeo, who recently admitted to lying, stealing and cheating when director of the CIA, is considering a number of other pre-emptive accusations over the coming weeks. These include condemnation of a possible chemical weapons attack carried out by the Syrian Government next year; plus the discovery of some hidden dead ducks in the English City of Salisbury. According to a source at the New York Times, the CIA director, Gina Haspel, is currently working with British Intelligence to prepare pictures of the ducks to show to President Trump, who is apparently unaware of what ducks, especially dead ones, look like.

When we contacted the Swedish Foreign office to get their reaction to Mr Pompeo’s pre-emptive claims, they said that none of their tankers had been attacked, no Swedish sailors had died and that launching accusations without even an incident, let alone evidence of responsibility, was “deeply unhelpful” to international relations. However, after receiving a phone call from John Bolton, they called us back to say that they now wholeheartedly agree with Mr Pompeo’s statement, are truly sorry for what they said before, and stand shoulder to shoulder with the US in defending the international rules based system. They also condemned Iran for attacking its ship and killing its sailors, which it hasn’t done yet but could well do at some point.

June 15, 2019 Posted by | Timeless or most popular | | 1 Comment

Ecuador: Galapagos Islands Will Now Serve US Military as Airfield

teleSUR | June 12, 2019

Ecuador’s right-wing government has agreed for the United States (U.S.) to use the airport of San Cristobal, in the Galapagos Islands, as an airfield for U.S. air force and navy Pacific ocean operations, according to the Minister of Defense Oswaldo Jarrin.

“Galapagos is Ecuador’s natural aircraft carrier because it ensures permanence, replenishment, interception facilities and is 1,000 kilometers from our coasts,” he assured, explaining that now U.S. military planes will also have access to it based on “cooperation” agreements signed under Lenin Moreno’s administration to “fight drug trafficking.”

On September 2018, a Lockheed P-3 Orion intelligence-gathering plane from the U.S. Customs and Border Protection agency began to operate from Ecuador. While a Boeing 707 aircraft from the U.S. air force, carrying a long-range radar surveillance and control center (AWAC), will now also be “patrolling” the Pacific. Both operations are reminiscent of those made by the U.S. government from the Base in Manta from 1999 to 2009.

“A base means permanence, there will be no permanence of anyone, the P3 and Awac will meet periods no longer than a week,” Jarrin argued. Yet he himself said on Aug. 27, 2018, that “the important thing is to recognize that everything that the base did in its time, can now be done by just one plane, because of the advance of technology.”

Despite the technicalities of such “cooperation” any presence of foreign armies in Ecuadorean territory is unconstitutional. According to article five of the 2008 Constitution, Ecuador declares itself as a territory of peace, where “the establishment of foreign military bases or foreign installations for military purposes will not be allowed. In addition, it is prohibited to cede national military bases to foreign armed or security forces.”

No, Mr. Minister. Galapagos is not an “aircraft carrier” for the gringos to use. It is an Ecuadorean province, world heritage, patriotic ground.

In what seems like an attempt to appease critics, the defense official, emphasized that the readjustments to the airfield will be paid by the U.S. Yet once again history warns that this is no sort of “assurance.”

In 1942, as the U.S. was just entering World War II both in the Pacific as the western front, another right-wing government in Ecuador allowed the U.S. army and navy to use the Island of Baltra, in the Galapagos, as an airfield. An airstrip was constructed, houses, barracks, movie theaters and dining halls for the armed personnel and families, all paid by the U.S.

However, in 1946 as the U.S. left they bombed and destroyed everything leaving nothing behind for the Ecuadorans.

June 15, 2019 Posted by | Illegal Occupation, Militarism | , | 1 Comment

US must show evidence if it wants to claim Russia breached nuke test treaty – Moscow

RT | June 14, 2019

If the United States accuses Russia of violating a crucial nuclear test treaty, there should be robust evidence backing up those claims, the Russian Foreign Ministry official has said.

Washington on Thursday “assessed that Russia has conducted nuclear weapons tests,” Ambassador Mikhail Ulyanov tweeted. “This allegation was earlier disregarded by CTBTO Prepcom on the basis of data of international monitoring system. Interesting: 2 weeks ago US said ‘probably.’ Now it’s affirmative. Did the US get new evidence?,” he wrote.

Last month, Lt. Gen. Robert P. Ashley Jr, the head of the Pentagon’s intelligence arm, claimed that the US believes Russia has “probably” restarted low-yield nuclear tests, in violation of the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty (CTBT).

Ashley alleged that Russia may be developing tactical nuclear weapons for use on conventional battlefields. However, he later softened the tone and said that Russia only “has the capability” to conduct a test with a low nuclear yield.

June 15, 2019 Posted by | Deception, Mainstream Media, Warmongering | | 1 Comment

Nicaragua Honors Police Killed During US-backed Protests

teleSUR | June 15, 2019

The National Police of Nicaragua’s Sandinista government held a ceremony Wednesday to honor the 22 police officers killed by right-wing protesters during the failed coup d’etat against President Daniel Ortega one year ago. Activists also paid tribute to two Sandinista supporters who were murdered during the same period.

The ceremony was held in the nation’s capital of Managua by senior National Police members and attended by the friends and families of the police officers who were killed during the violent coup attempt by armed right-wing groups backed by the United States.

Also Wednesday, the city of Jinotepe paid tribute to Marcos Gutierrez and Guillermo Mendez, two Sandinista activists, at the one year anniversary of their murder at the hands of the anti-government protesters.

In Managua, Police Commissioner General Aldo Saenz Ulloa said at the ceremony: “Thanks to the sacrifice of our 22 fallen brothers and sisters in defense of the well-being of Nicaragua’s families, we have peace, stability and security that we will carry forward to rebuild well-being (in Nicaragua) for all”.

Jinotepe Mayor Mariano Madrigal spoke at the city’s gathering, saying “Nicaragua will never forget the spirit of hate that was inculcated in the population when terrorist and coup elements kidnapped, tortured and assassinated citizens here.”

Violence broke out in Nicaragua during May and June of 2018 when the right-wing opposition launched a bid to overthrow the leftist Sandinista administration lead by Ortega. The opposition in Nicaragua have been recipients of funds and training from the U.S. government.

Right-wing elements also burned the leftist Radio Ya! Community radio station during the protests, and kidnapped and tortured elderly Sandinista supporter Bismarck Martinez, whose remains were recently found after a year long search.

The Amnesty Law was approved this week by the Nicaraguan National Assembly that grants a one-off amnesty for those involved in clashes on the condition that perpetrators do not re-offend. The government hopes this law will bring peace and reconciliation to the nation.

June 15, 2019 Posted by | Timeless or most popular | | Leave a comment

‘We need points!’ US must invade Venezuela to scare Iran & N. Korea, Graham claims

RT | June 15, 2019

Sen. Lindsey Graham has suggested President Trump “put military force on the table” by invading Venezuela (and possibly Cuba) in order to scare North Korea and Iran into doing what they’re told. What could possibly go wrong?

“Give Cuba an ultimatum – without Cuba, Maduro doesn’t last one day – tell Cuba to get out of Venezuela. Do what Reagan did in Grenada – put military force on the table!” Graham told a Fox News host, going from zero to invasion in ten seconds flat in response to a question about how Trump should handle his foreign conflicts.

“We need points on the board,” the South Carolina senator insisted. “Start with your own backyard… Fix Venezuela and everybody else will know you’re serious.” North Korea and Iran, he implied, would fall right into line after Venezuela was put in its place.

While Graham paid lip service to the president’s non-military accomplishments, reluctantly congratulating him on slowing down North Korea’s nuclear ambitions, his advice didn’t include much by way of diplomacy: “When it comes to Rocketman, letters don’t matter anymore to me, it’s performance.” Graham notably called for Trump to “end the nuclear threat” mere hours after the president’s Hanoi summit with the North Korean leader collapsed.

Graham’s Monroe-doctrine-on-steroids patter isn’t exactly unfamiliar to those who’ve been following his bellicose ravings – the Republican senator dropped a Grenada reference just last month as Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro prepared to meet his US-backed would-be replacement Juan Guaido in Oslo for negotiations, perhaps seeing his chance for a war in South America slipping away.

It’s easy to see why Graham would take such a fond view of Reagan’s bullheaded 1983 Grenada invasion. While it was universally condemned – the UN deemed it a “flagrant violation of international law” by a vote of 108 to 9, and even UK PM Margaret Thatcher privately disapproved (though she backed her ally in public) – Americans supported the invasion, having been convinced via a well-orchestrated propaganda campaign that a few hundred American medical students on the island were in mortal danger under the island’s new government.

Reagan hoped the neat and tidy four-day invasion would shore up Americans’ faith in their own military, which had been on a steady downhill slide since Vietnam, and Graham appears to believe the US would similarly receive a morale boost from Venezuela, despite the obvious differences in population and military power.

June 15, 2019 Posted by | Militarism | , , | 2 Comments

Iran can be Trump’s nemesis

By M. K. BHADRAKUMAR | Indian Punchline | June 15, 2019

What a coincidence that a leaked document from the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) just exposed that the chemical weapons attack in Douma, Syria in April, 2018 was most likely staged. In security parlance, it was a false flag operation — stage-managed cunningly to create the alibi for a ‘humanitarian intervention’ by the West in Syria.

As it happened, the US and France did stage a missile strike at Syrian government targets in July that year, alleging that Damascus was culpable for what happened in Douma, ignoring the protests by Russia.

False flag operations are not uncommon, but the US holds a PhD on that genre. The most famous one in modern history was the Gulf of Tonkin incident of August 1964 where the US government deliberately misrepresented facts to justify a war against Vietnam.

Prima facie, there is enough circumstantial evidence to estimate that the attack on two tankers in the Gulf of Oman on June 13 has been a false flag operation. The attack on the two tankers with cargo heading for Japan took place just as the Japanese PM Shinzo Abe sat down for the meeting yesterday with Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei in Tehran.

The fact of the matter is that Abe was on a delicate mission to try to kickstart talks between the US and Iran. It is one of those delicate moments when a slight push can derail or even undermine the nascent move for dialogue. True, in the first round, Khamenei rejected talks with the US. But, as Abe said later, more efforts are needed for easing tensions between the US and Iran.

Therefore, as regards the incident yesterday in the Gulf of Oman, the question to be asked is: Who stands to gain? Most certainly, it cannot be Iran, which has just laid on the table in plain terms what it takes for negotiations to commence between the US and Iran — President Trump abandoning what Tehran calls the US’ ‘economic terrorism’ against it. Khamenei told Abe with great frankness that it is futile to negotiate with the US, which keeps resiling from international agreements. No doubt, Trump has been highly erratic by making overtures to Iran on the one hand and tightening the screw on the other hand. (See my blog Abe’s mediatory mission to Tehran hangs in the balance.)

Simply put, Iran has no axe to grind by undermining Abe’s mission, especially since Japan is the only western power, which, historically speaking, never ever acted against Iran but on the contrary consistently maintained friendly ties and showed goodwill. (Once in 1953, Japan even ignored the British-American embargo against Iran and went ahead to import Iranian oil.)

However, this much cannot be said about certain regional states  — which Iran has called the ‘B Team’ — that are bent on perpetuating the US-Iran standoff and incrementally degrade Iran to a point that a military confrontation ensues at some point in which American power dispatches that country to the “Stone Age”, as the present US National Security Advisor John Bolton once put it.

In this rogues’ gallery, apart from Israel, there is also Saudi Arabia and the UAE. Bolton, of course, is mentored by Israel and it is an established fact that he has received money for services rendered from the Mojahedin-e Khalq, the anti-Iran terrorist group based in France, which espouses the overthrow of the Islamic regime in Tehran.

Iran has sounded warnings in recent weeks, including at the level of Foreign Minister Javad Zarif,  that this ‘B Team’ would at some point stage false flag operations to ratchet up tensions and/ or precipitate a crisis situation, that would in turn prompt Trump to order some sort of military action against Iran.

To be sure, the stakes are very high for Israel, Saudi Arabia and the UAE if Abe’s mission advances further and the current tensions begin to ease. An added factor for the ‘B Team’ is that time is the essence of the matter. It increasingly seems that Bolton’s job as NSA is in danger. Trump has hinted more than once that he does not subscribe to Bolton’s warmongering. The well-known ex-CIA officer and commentator John Kiriakou wrote this week that the White House has “very quietly and discreetly begun informal meetings with a list of a half-dozen possible replacements for Bolton.” (See the commentary in Consortium News titled JOHN KIRIAKOU: Bolton’s Long Goodbye.) It is crucial for the ‘B Team’ that Bolton keeps his job in the White House. And there is no better way to hold back Trump from sacking his NSA when a crisis situation looms large in the Middle East.

Be that as it may, the US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has announced that Iran is responsible for the incident in the Gulf of Oman. He claimed in a statement, “This assessment is based on intelligence, the weapons used, the level of expertise needed to execute the operation, recent similar Iranian attacks on shipping, and the fact that no proxy group operating in the area has the resources and proficiency to act with such a high degree of sophistication.”

Now, doesn’t Israel too have the intelligence capability, weapons and expertise to execute such a false flag operation? Read Pompeo’s statement carefully and its laboured tone gives away that the ex-CIA Director (who recently even bragged openly about the art of lying in diplomacy and politics) was  far from convincing.

So, where’s the beef? Pompeo has instructed that the UN Ambassador Jonathan Cohen raise the matter in the UN Security Council. There is an eerie similarity to what once one of Pompeo’s predecessors as state secretary, Colin Powell did — manufacturing evidence of WMD program by Saddam Hussein to pave the way for the US to invade Iraq.

What needs to be factored in is that the US anticipates that in another fortnight, Iran’s 60-day deadline for the European countries to come up with concrete steps to fulfil their commitments under the 2015 Iran nuclear deal will expire. The German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas’s visit to Tehran last week was a calculated attempt to persuade Iran to accept the stark reality that it must unilaterally fulfil its commitments under the nuclear deal while there is little the EU can do in practical terms to defy the US sanctions. Maas tried to persuade Iran to accept the US’ demand that non-nuclear issues (such as Iran’s missile programme, regional policies, etc.) also be negotiated under a new pact. Quite obviously, the European powers, despite their bravado (in words), are falling in line with Trump’s strategy of ‘maximum pressure’ against Iran.

If Iran decides to reject the idea of unilaterally observing the 2015 deal (without any reciprocal acts by the international community), the US and its western allies will want to take the matter to the UNSC to revive the UN’s past (pre-2015) sanctions against Iran. The big question is whether Russia and China would allow such a turn of events. Tehran has categorically denied any involvement in yesterday’s incident. And Iran is playing it cool. President Hassan Rouhani and Foreign Minister Javad Zarif left Tehran for Bishkek on June 13, as scheduled previously, to participate in the Shanghai Cooperation summit.    

Meanwhile, the US has made an additional deployment to the region. But then, the US Central Command has also signalled to Tehran in a statement: “We have no interest in engaging in a new conflict in the Middle East. We will defend our interests, but a war with Iran is not in our strategic interest, nor in the best interest of the international community.”

At this point, the logical thing to do will be to insist on an impartial investigation by the UNSC on the incident. But, curiously, no country is willing to bell the cat. Russia, which is usually quick on demanding facts before reaching any definitive opinion on such murky situations, is also not in a hurry to demand investigation. Can it be that everyone understands that this was a false flag operation and could only be Bolton’s last waltz with Netanyahu?

Trump is walking a fine line. He has blamed Iran, but refrained from saying what he proposed to do. The fact remains that a highly dangerous situation is developing in and around the Straits of Hormuz, which is a choke point for oil tankers.

An entanglement with Iran’s Pasdaran is the last thing Trump would want as he plans to announce shortly his candidacy for the 2020 election. The situation is fraught with grave political risks, if one recalls how the Iran crisis spelt doom for Jimmy Carter’s re-election campaign in 1980.

Trump has bitten more than he could chew, as the strong rebuke Iran’s Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei administered to him underscores. Iran may turn out to be Trump’s nemesis.

Read the CNN ‘analysis’ here taunting Trump to walk the talk on Iran.

June 15, 2019 Posted by | False Flag Terrorism, Wars for Israel | , , , , | 1 Comment

Backing Pompeo’s ‘Gulf of Tonkin’ incident is a massive anti-Iran online propaganda campaign

By Helen Buyniski | Helen of Destroy | June 14, 2019

Twitter has declared victory over disinformation, deplatforming thousands of pro-Iranian Twitter accounts this week to coincide with US Secretary of State “Rapture Mike” Pompeo’s evidence-free declaration that Iran had attacked two oil tankers in the Gulf of Oman. But the mass deletion is merely an effort to distract from the implosion of two anti-Iran troll campaigns dedicated to smearing pro-peace Americans, both tacitly Twitter-approved. And there’s plenty more where those came from. As US media and politicians continues to hyperventilate about Russian bots, who’s the real troll-master?

Pompeo was out front with the blame hours after the attack, absent a shred of proof beyond unspecified “intelligence” and a few other dubious incidents in the Middle East that the US has previously pinned on Iran (also absent a shred of proof). But even mainstream media has initially been reluctant to take his word for it, mostly because the narrative is so improbable – Japan’s PM Shinzo Abe was in Tehran when it happened, promising to make the “utmost effort” to de-escalate tensions, when, as if on cue, one Japanese ship and another carrying Japanese cargo were hit? What are the odds?

When even CNN acknowledged that the attack “doesn’t appear to benefit any of the protagonists in the region,” and Bloomberg admitted “Iran has little to gain” from blowing up the ships of its esteemed guest, Pompeo clearly understood another route of influence was required. Who better to call in for reinforcements than Twitter, which has demonstrated time and again its willingness to serve the US’ preferred narrative with mass deplatformings? 4,779 accounts believed to be “associated or backed by Iran” were removed – less than an hour after Pompeo’s declaration of Iranian guilt – for nothing more than tweeting “global news content, often with an angle that benefited the diplomatic and geostrategic views of the Iranian state.” This was deemed “platform manipulation,” and therefore unacceptable.

One troll down, thousands more to go

Tweeting with an angle that benefits the diplomatic and geostrategic views of the American state, however, is perfectly acceptable – at least, it wasn’t Twitter that brought the “Iran Disinformation Project” crashing to a halt earlier this month. The State Department officially ended its @IranDisinfo influence operation after the social media initiative, ostensibly created to “counter Iranian propaganda,” went rogue, smearing any and all critics of Trump’s hawkish Iran policy as paid operatives of the Iranian government. Human rights activists, students, journalists, academics, even insufficiently-militant American propagandists at RFE/RL, Voice of America and other US-funded outlets were attacked by @IranDisinfo – all on the US taxpayer’s dime.

Congress only learned of the project in a closed-door hearing on Monday, when the State Department confessed the troll campaign had taken $1.5 million in taxpayers’ money to attack those same taxpayers – all in the name of promoting “freedom of expression and free access to information.” The group contracted to operate Iran Disinfo, E-Collaborative for Civic Education, is run by an Iranian immigrant and claims to focus on strengthening “civil society” and “democracy” back home, though its work is almost exclusively US-focused and its connections with pro-war think tanks like the Foundation for Defense of Democracies have alarmed congressional staffers.

“What rules are in place to prevent state-funded organization from smearing American citizens? If there wasn’t public outcry, would the Administration have suspended funding for Iran Disinfo?” Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-Minnesota) tweeted after the mea culpa meeting. While the State Department was long barred from directing government-funded propaganda at its own citizens, that rule was quietly repealed in 2013 with the passage of the Smith-Mundt Modernization Act, which gave its narrative-spinners free reign to run influence operations at home. And while the Pentagon is technically forbidden from running psychological operations (“psy-ops”) against American citizens, that rule goes out the window in case of “domestic emergencies” – and the domestic emergency declared by then-President George W. Bush days after the September 11 terror attacks remains in effect, 18 years later.

Trump’s favorite anti-Iran troll

Nor was the State Department’s trolling operation the only anti-Iran psy-op to be unmasked in recent weeks. Heshmat Alavi, a virulently anti-Iranian columnist promoted by the Trump administration and published in Forbes, the Hill, and several other outlets, was exposed by the Intercept as a propaganda construct operated by the Mojahedin-e Khalq (MEK), a controversial Iranian exile group often called a cult that has only recently lobbied its way off the US’ terror list. The MEK is notorious for buying the endorsement of American political figures, and national security adviser John Bolton, Senator Bob Menendez (D-NJ), and former New York mayor Rudy Giuliani are among those who have spoken at its events.

The fictional Heshmat Alavi’s stories were used to sell Trump’s withdrawal from the Iran deal to the Washington Post and other more reputable outlets, as well as to promote the MEK as a “main Iranian opposition group” and viable option for post-regime-change leadership of Iran – even though it is very much fringe and hated by the majority of Iranians for fighting on the side of Iraq during the Iran-Iraq war of the 1980s. Indeed, Alavi’s relentless advocacy for the MEK may have scared off a few of the sites that initially published his work – the Diplomat and the Daily Caller both quit publishing him in 2017, citing quality concerns.

None of the editors who’d published Alavi’s work had ever spoken to him or even paid him, and none could provide the Intercept with any evidence that he was not, in fact, “a persona run by a team of people from the political wing of the MEK.” Defectors confirmed that Alavi is a small part of a massive US-directed propaganda campaign.

“We were always active in making false news stories to spread to the foreign press and in Iran,” a Canadian MEK defector told the Intercept, describing a comprehensive online propaganda operation run out of the group’s former base in Iraq that sought to control the narrative about Iran on Facebook and Twitter. Alavi may be gone, his account quietly suspended by Twitter in the wake of the Intercept’s unmasking and his stories pulled from Forbes and the Diplomat, but there are more where he came from. The Intercept delivered Twitter all the evidence they needed to take down the MEK’s trolling network, a swamp of “coordinated inauthentic behavior” in which Alavi was a prominent node, but the social network sat on its hands.

Friends funding fiends

Add to this toxic US-approved stew the Israeli astroturf operation Act.IL, which in 2018 took $1.1 million from Israel’s Ministry of Strategic Affairs to troll Americans critical of Israeli policies, including its hostility toward Iran. Initially founded to combat the Iran nuclear deal, the Ministry’s mission has pivoted to combating the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement, for which it receives significant US funding (Israeli Lt-Gen Gabi Ashkenazi admitted in 2012 that American taxpayers contribute more to the country’s defense budget than Israeli taxpayers). Act.IL boasts it has gotten Americans fired from their jobs, and the app encourages users to accuse American students and journalists who support BDS of antisemitism, mass-report their posts, and otherwise engage in what would be called “coordinated inauthentic behavior” if any other country did it.

Act.IL is by no means the only Israeli trolling campaign aimed at American eyeballs, either. Psy-Group, the Israeli private intelligence company that infamously pitched a social media influence operation to the Trump campaign, ran a multi-pronged online smear operation to influence a local election in California in 2017 and has pitched dozens more. The Israel on Campus Coalition attacks pro-Palestinian student activists and professors through coordinated social media campaigns, while The Israel Project operates a network of Facebook groups whose admitted purpose is to smuggle pro-Israeli propaganda into users’ newsfeeds by concealing it among bland inspirational messages.

Such clear-cut deception by state-sponsored actors is a blatant violation of Facebook’s policies as they’ve been applied to other users, but the site claims the Israeli groups are kosher. Yet of the pro-Iran accounts deleted by Twitter, one “set” included 248 accounts “engaged with discussions related to Israel specifically” – these were shut down for nothing more than their country of origin, even as inauthentic accounts run by Israel were given carte-blanche to spew propaganda. Twitter and Facebook don’t mind being weaponized in the propaganda wars, as long as they’re working for the “right” side.

As 21st century wars are fought more and more in the informational sphere, the brightly-colored propaganda posters of the previous century have been replaced with relatively sophisticated social media influence operations. What Pompeo can’t accomplish by lying to the American public, the State Department will attempt to achieve through the slow and steady drip of disinformation.

US politicians, meanwhile, remain so fixated on the “Russian trolls stole the election!” narrative they’ve been flogging for the last three years that the Senate last week unanimously passed a bill to restrict entry to any foreign national convicted of “election meddling,” a toothless piece of legislative virtue-signaling that reveals their utter disconnection from reality. It’s more than a little ironic that they’d embrace and even pay for foreign meddling as long as they believe the trolls are working for them.

As Friedrich Nietzsche said, “Whoever fights monsters should see to it that in the process he does not become a monster.” Or a troll.

[originally published in abbreviated form at RT]

June 15, 2019 Posted by | Deception, Full Spectrum Dominance, Mainstream Media, Warmongering, Timeless or most popular | | 1 Comment

‘Does Not Make Sense’: Fallout From Oil Tanker Attack Benefits Emiratis, Saudis, Not Tehran

Sputnik – 15.06.2019

In an interview with Radio Sputnik’s Loud and Clear, Mohammed Marandi, an expert on American studies and postcolonial literature who teaches at the University of Tehran, dismissed the US accusation that Iran was responsible for the attacks on two oil tankers in the Gulf of Oman Thursday, saying Tehran had nothing to gain from such a move.

“There is obviously a great deal of skepticism [in Iran], because the first attack that was carried out about a month ago on a number of ships near the port off the UAE [United Arab Emirates] coast happened almost immediately after [US National Security Adviser John] Bolton said that he had received intelligence from the Israelis that Iran wants to carry out attacks on US interests,” Marandi told hosts John Kiriakou and Brian Becker.

Bolton previously accused Iran of attacking tankers located off the coast of the Emirati port of Fujairah earlier this month. On May 12, four oil tankers — two Saudi, one Norwegian and one Emirati — were targeted by acts of sabotage in the UAE’s exclusive economic zone in the Gulf of Oman. According to Bolton, the four oil tankers were targeted by “naval mines almost certainly from Iran.”

On Thursday, the “Front Altair” oil tanker, owned by Norwegian company Frontline, and the chemical tanker “Kokuka Courageous,” owned by Japanese company Kokuka Sangyo, were attacked near the Strait of Hormuz, a narrow stretch of water between the Persian Gulf and Gulf of Oman, and one of the most important passageways for world oil supplies.

“Now as the Japanese Prime Minister comes to Iran after 41 years … he is on his way to see the [Iranian Supreme] leader [Ayatollah Ali Khamenei] in the morning, and as he’s getting ready, two ships are hit right outside that are linked to Japan,” Marandi explained. “These attacks seem, again, to be designed to harm Iranian interests, because the Iranian leader, in the meeting with the prime minister, called Japan a friend of Iran. So why would Iran attack targets affiliated or associated with Japan at a time when the prime minister is in Iran? It simply does not make sense.”

On Friday, US President Donald Trump accused Iran of attacking the tankers, claiming that a video released by the US military proves Tehran’s culpability. Just a day prior, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo claimed that the attacks were executed with such a high degree of sophistication, with all 44 crew members of the tankers being safely evacuated, that Iran was the only power in the region that could have been behind them.

However, on Friday, Yutaka Katada, the president of Kokuka Sangyo, refuted the US version of events, claiming that crew members on the Japanese ship saw a flying object right before the attack.

“I do not think there was a time bomb or an object attached to the side of the ship. A mine doesn’t damage a ship above sea level. We aren’t sure exactly what hit, but it was something flying towards the ship,” Katada said, according to Japanese media.

“I’m glad to know that people think that when Iran carries out an attack, they’re very careful not have people killed. I guess that means that they expect the Israelis and Americans to kill innocent people in such attacks,” Marandi told Sputnik.

“But I don’t think that is a credible argument. In fact, it runs in contrast to American claims. Americans are claiming that Iranian oil exports are down to zero, which is not true, but if that’s the case, what’s the use in driving up the price of oil?” Marandi asked.

Following the attacks Thursday, oil prices rose by 4% with Brent Crude, the international benchmark for oil prices, spiking to $61.99 a barrel. The US has previously threatened to reduce Iranian crude oil exports “to zero” via sanctions.

“[The rise in oil prices] only benefits the Saudis and the Emiratis. It would make the vast amount of oil that they export more expensive,” Marandi noted.

“The most important point [that one] can make about Iranian responses to the US is a) that the Iranians will restart elements of the nuclear program, and they will decrease their commitment to the [Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action] JCPOA, and that will put pressure on the US and the Europeans; and b) I am very confident that the Iranians are helping the Yemenis in their fight against Saudi and Emirati aggression,” Marandi added. “And the amount of damage that the Yemeni armed forces are doing to the Saudis has gone up dramatically. We have seen how sophisticated the Yemeni defense capabilities have become over the last couple of years, and I think that the transfer of tech to the Yemenis has been from friendly countries like Iran.”

In May 2018, Trump announced the US’ withdrawal from the 2015 Iran nuclear deal, the JCPOA, reinstating harsh sanctions against Tehran. Last month, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said that Iran would begin stockpiling low-enriched uranium and heavy water, which can be used to build nuclear weapons in nuclear reactors. He also said the country would start enriching uranium to higher levels than permitted under the terms of the JCPOA.

June 15, 2019 Posted by | False Flag Terrorism | , | 2 Comments