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‘Too Big to Fail’: Russia-gate One Year After VIPS Showed a Leak, Not a Hack

By Patrick Lawrence | Consortium News | August 13, 2018

A year has passed since highly credentialed intelligence professionals produced the first hard evidence that allegations of mail theft and other crimes attributed to Russia rested on purposeful falsification and subterfuge. The initial reaction to these revelations—a firestorm of frantic denial—augured ill, and the time since has fulfilled one’s worst expectations. One year later we live within an institutionalized proscription of proven reality. Our discourse consists of a series of fence posts and taboos. By any detached measure, this lands us in deep, serious trouble. The sprawl of what we call “Russia-gate” now brings our republic and its institutions to a moment of great peril—the gravest since the McCarthy years and possibly since the Civil War. No, I do not consider this hyperbole.

Much has happened since Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity published its report on intrusions into the Democratic Party’s mail servers on Consortium News on July 24 last year. Parts of the intelligence apparatus—by no means all or even most of it—have issued official “assessments” of Russian culpability. Media have produced countless multi-part “investigations,” “special reports,” and what-have-yous that amount to an orgy of faulty syllogisms. Robert Mueller’s special investigation has issued two sets of indictments that, on scrutiny, prove as wanting in evidence as the notoriously flimsy intelligence “assessment” of January 6, 2017.

Indictments are not evidence and do not need to contain evidence. That is supposed to come out at trail, which is very unlikely to ever happen. Nevertheless, the corporate media has treated the indictments as convictions.

Numerous sets of sanctions against Russia, individual Russians, and Russian entities have been imposed on the basis of this great conjuring of assumption and presumption. The latest came last week, when the Trump administration announced measures in response to the alleged attempt to murder Sergei and Yulia Skripal, a former double agent and his daughter, in England last March. No evidence proving responsibility in the Skripal case has yet been produced. This amounts to our new standard. It prompted a reader with whom I am in regular contact to ask, “How far will we allow our government to escalate against others without proof of anything?”

This is a very good question.

Cover of 2001 book that looks at an earlier era of anti-Russia hysteria

There have been many attempts to discredit VIPS50 as the group’s document is called. There has been much amateurish journalism, false reporting, misrepresentation, distortion, misquotation, and omission. We have been treated to much shoddy science, attempts at character assassination, a great deal of base name-calling, and much else. Russia is routinely advanced as the greatest threat to democracy Americans now face. Is there any denying that we live amid an induced hysteria now comparable to the “Red under every bed” period of the 1950s?

None of this has altered the basic case. VIPS and forensic scientists working with it have continued their investigations. New facts, some of which alter conclusions drawn last year, have come to light, and these are to be addressed. But the basic evidence that Russia-gate is a false narrative concocted by various constituents of national power stands, difficult as this is to discern. Scrape back all that is ethically unacceptable and unscrupulously conveyed into the public sphere and you find that nothing has changed: No one “hacked” the Democratic party’s mail in the summer of 2016. It was leaked locally, from what one can make out, to expose the party leadership’s corrupt efforts to sink Bernie Sanders’ insurgent campaign to win the Democratic nomination.

But in another, very profound way, more has changed since VIPS50 was published than one could have imagined a year ago. American discourse has descended to a dangerous level of irrationality. The most ordinary standards of evidentiary procedure are forgone. Many of our key institutions—the foreign policy apparatus, the media, key intelligence and law-enforcement agencies, the political leadership—are now extravagantly committed to a narrative none appears able to control. The risk of self-inflicted damage these institutions assume, should the truth of the Russia-gate events emerge—as one day it surely will—is nearly incalculable. This is what inspires my McCarthy and Civil War references. Russia-gate, in a phrase, has become too big to fail.

This column is an attack on no one. However it may be read, it is not intended as another round of vituperative argument adding to the din and fog we already suffer daily. No shred of ideology informs it. I write a lament—this for all we have done to ourselves and our institutions this past year, and to the prospect of an orderly world, and for all that must somehow be done to repair the damage once enough of us indeed recognize what has been done.

New VIPS Findings

Binney: Dares anyone to prove remote speeds

The forensic scientists working with VIPS continued their research and experiments after VIPS50 was published. So have key members of the VIPS group, notably William Binney, the National Security Agency’s former technical director for global analysis and designer of programs the agency still uses to monitor internet traffic. Such work continues as we speak, indeed. This was always the intent: “Evidence to date” was the premise of VIPS50. Over the past year there have been confirmations of the original thesis and some surprises that alter secondary aspects of it. Let us look at the most significant of these findings.

At the time I reported on the findings of VIPS and associated forensic scientists, that the most fundamental evidence that the events of summer 2016 constituted a leak, not a hack, was the transfer rate—the speed at which data was copied. The speed proven then was an average of 22.7 megabytes per second. That speed matches what is standard when someone with physical access uses an external storage device to copy data from a computer or server and is much faster than a remote hack reliant on an internet service provider could achieve—either at the time or since, Binney has found.

Binney experimented into the autumn. By mid-autumn he had tested several routes—from East Coast locations to cities in eastern Europe, from New Jersey to London. The fastest internet transfer speed achieved, during the New Jersey–to–Britain test, was 12.0 megabytes of data per second. Since this time it has emerged from G-2.0’s metadata that the detected average speed—the 22.7 megabytes per second—included peak speeds that ran as high as 49.1 megabytes per second, impossible over the internet. “You’d need a dedicated, leased, 400–megabit line all the way to Russia to achieve that result,” Binney said in a recent interview.

To my knowledge, no one with an understanding of the science involved, including various former skeptics, any longer questions the validity of the specific finding based on the observed transfer rate. That remains the bedrock evidence of the case VIPS and others advance without qualification. No one—including the FBI, the CIA, and the NSA—has come out against this finding,” Binney said Monday. “Anyone who says the speed we demonstrated can be achieved remotely, our position is ‘Let’s see it. We’ll help any way we can.’ There hasn’t been anyone yet.”

There is also the question of where and when leaks were executed. Research into this has turned out differently.

Evidence last year, based on analysis of the available metadata, showed that the copy operation date-stamped July 5, 2016, took place in the Eastern U.S. time zone. But Forensicator, one of the chief forensic investigators working on the mail-theft case anonymously, published evidence in May that, while there was activity in the Eastern zone at the time of that copy, here was also a copy operation in the Pacific time zone, where clocks run three hours earlier that EST. In an earlier publication he had also reported activity in the Central time zone.

Plainly, more was awaiting discovery as to the when and where of the copy operations. The identity of Guccifer 2.0, who claimed to be a Romanian hacker but which the latest Mueller indictment claims is a construct of the GRU, Russian military intelligence, has never been proven. The question is what G–2.0 did with or to the data in question. It turns out that both more, and less, is known about G–2.0 than was thought to have been previously demonstrated. This work has been completed only recently. It was done by Binney in collaboration with Duncan Campbell, a British journalist who has followed the Russia-gate question closely.

Peak Speed Established

Binney visited Campbell in Brighton, England, early this past spring. They examined all the metadata associated with the files G–2.0 has made public. They looked at the number of files, the size of each, and the time stamps at the end of each. It was at this time that Binney and Campbell established the peak transfer rate at 49.1 megabytes per second.

But they discovered something else of significance, too. At some point G–2.0 had merged two sets of data, one dated July 5, 2016, which had been known, and another dated the following September 1, which had not been known. In essence, Campbell reverse-engineered G–2.0’s work: He took the sets of data G–2.0 presented as two and combined them back into one. “G–2.0 used an algorithm to make a downloaded file look like two files,” Binney explained. “Those two shuffled back together like a deck of cards.”

G–2.0 then took another step. Running another algorithm, he changed all the dates on all the files. With yet another algorithm, he changed the hours stamped on each file. These are called “range changes” among the professionals. The conclusion was then obvious: G–2.0 is a fabrication and a fabricator. Forensicator had already proven that the G–2.0 entity had inserted Russian “fingerprints” into the document known as the “Trump Opposition Report,” which he had published on June 15, 2016. It is clear that no firm conclusions can be drawn at this point as to when or where G–2.0 did what he did.

“Now you need to prove everything you might think about him,” Binney told me. “We have no way of knowing anything about him or what he has done, apart from manipulating the files. We detected activity in the Eastern time zone. Now we have to ask again, ‘Which time zone?’ The West Coast copy operation [discovered by Forensicator] has to be proven. All the data has been manipulated. It’s a fabrication.”

This throws various things into question. The conclusions initially drawn on time and location in VIPS50 are now subject to these recent discoveries. “In retrospect, giving ‘equal importance’ status to data pertaining to the locale was mistaken,” Ray McGovern, a prominent VIPS member, wrote in a recent note. “The key finding on transfer speed always dwarfed it in importance.”

The indictments against 12 Russian intelligence officers announced in mid–July by Rod Rosenstein, the deputy attorney-general, also come into question. They rest in considerable part on evidence derived from G–2.0 and DCLeaks, another online persona. How credible are those indictments in view of what is now known about G–2.0?

Binney told me: “Once we proved G–2.0 is a fabrication and a manipulator, the timing and location questions couldn’t be answered but really didn’t matter. I don’t right now see a way of absolutely proving either time or location. But this doesn’t change anything. We know what we know: The intrusion into the Democratic National Committee mail was a local download—wherever ‘local’ is.” That doesn’t change. As to Rosenstein, he’ll have a lot to prove.”

What Role does Evidence Play?

Rosenstein’s predicament—and there is no indication he understands it as one—brings us to an essential problem: What is the place of evidence in American public discourse? Of rational exchange?

The questions are germane far beyond the Russia-gate phenomenon, but it is there that answers are most urgent. What is implicit in the Rosenstein indictments has been evident everywhere in our public sphere for a year or more: Make a presumption supported by circumstantial evidence or none and build other presumptions upon it until a false narrative is constructed. The press has deployed this device for as long as I have been a practitioner: “Might” or “could” or “possibly” becomes “perhaps,” “probably” and “almost certainly,” and then moves on to unqualified fact in the course of, maybe, several weeks. Now this is how our most basic institutions—not least agencies of the Justice Department—routinely operate.

Rosenstein at the Department of Justice July 13, 2018 announcing indictments against 12 Russian GRU. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

This is what I mean when I refer to ours as a republic in peril.

There is the argument that certain things have been uncovered over the past year, and these are enough to conclude that Russia plots to undermine our democracy. I refer to the small number of Facebook advertisements attributed to Russians, to strings of Twitter messages, to various phishing exercises that occur thousands of times a day the world over. To be clear, I am no more satisfied with the evidence of Russian involvement in these cases than I am with the evidence in any other aspect of the Russia-gate case. But for the sake of argument, let us say it is all true.

Does this line up with the Russophobic hysteria—not too strong a term—that envelops us? Does this explain the astonishing investments our public institutions, the press, and leading political parties have made in advancing this hysteria as they did a variant of in the 1950s?

As global politics go, some serious thought should be given to a reality we have created all by ourselves: It is now likely that America has built a new Cold War division with Russia that will prove permanent for the next 20 to 30 years. All this because of some Facebook ads and Twitter threads of unproven origin? Am I the only one who sees a weird and worrisome gap between what we are intent on believing—as against thinking or knowing—and the consequences of these beliefs?

There was an orthodoxy abroad many centuries ago called Fideism. In the simplest terms, it means the privileging of faith and belief over reason. It was the enemy of individual conscience, among much else. Fideism has deep roots, but it was well around in the 16th century, when Montaigne and others had to navigate its many dangers. Closer to our time, William James landed a variant on American shores with an 1896 address called “The Will to Believe.” Bertrand Russell countered this line of thinking a couple of decades later with “Free Thought and Official Propaganda,” a lecture whose title I will let speak for itself. Twenty years ago, none other than Pope John Paul II warned of a resurgence of Fideism. It is still around, in short.

Do we suffer from it? A variant of it, I would say, if not precisely in name. There seems to be a givenness to it in the American character. I think we are staring into a 21st century rendition of it.

To doubt the hollowed-out myth of American innocence is a grave sin against the faith. It is now unpatriotic to question the Russia-gate narrative despite the absence of evidence to support it. Informal censorship of differing perspectives is perfectly routine. It is now considered treasonous to question the word of intelligence agencies and the officials who lead them despite long records of deceit. Do we forget that it was only 15 years ago that these same institutions and people deceived us into an invasion of Iraq the consequences of which still persist?

This was the question Craig Murray, the former British diplomat (who has vital information on the DNC mail theft but who has never been interviewed by American investigators) posed a few weeks ago. Eugene Robinson gave a good-enough reply in a Washington Post opinion piece shortly afterward: “God Bless the Deep State,” the headline read.

How we got here deserves a work of social psychology, and I hope someone takes up the task. Understanding our path into our self-created crisis seems to me the first step to finding our way out of it.


Patrick Lawrence, a correspondent abroad for many years, chiefly for the International Herald Tribune, is a columnist, essayist, author, and lecturer. His most recent book is Time No Longer: Americans After the American Century (Yale). Follow him @thefloutist. His web site is www.patricklawrence.us. Support his work via www.patreon.com/thefloutist.

August 13, 2018 Posted by | Deception, Fake News, Mainstream Media, Warmongering, Russophobia, Timeless or most popular | , | Leave a comment

The Judgment of Jeremy Corbyn

By Martin SIEFF | Strategic Culture Foundation | 13.08.2018

For a man who is assailed and accused of lacking judgment even more than US President Donald Trump, it’s amazing how often British Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn has already been proven courageously and presciently right.

In 1990, Corbyn opposed the most powerful and successful peace time prime minster of the 20th century, Margaret Thatcher when she tried to impose a so-called poll tax on the population of the UK. His judgment was vindicated: Thatcher’s own party rose up and threw her out of office.

At the beginning of the 21st century Corbyn was pilloried throughout the UK media for his outspoken opposition to Prime Minister Tony Blair’s support for the US invasions of both Afghanistan and Iraq. Blair was prime minister for a full decade and won three landslide general elections, yet today he is discredited and politically virtually a recluse. Corbyn‘s opposition to both wars looks wise, as well as principled and courageous.

Corbyn’s support for the revolutionary Irish Republican movement was so strong that the UK security service MI5 monitored him for two decades listing him as a potential “subversive” who might undermine parliamentary democracy. On the contrary, in the late 1990s, Prime Minister Blair engaged the Irish Republican Army and its political wing Sinn Fein in a peace process that has led to a lasting peace in Ireland. Corbyn, who supported strongly the 1998 Good Friday Agreement proved once again to be ahead of his time.

Corbyn has never been afraid of taking ferociously unpopular positions. In 2015, after shocking Islamic State terror attacks in Paris he advocated the urgent need for a political settlement to end the Syrian Civil War. His advice was ignored by every major Western government. Hundreds of thousands of people have been killed and millions more turned into destitute refugees flooding into the European Union since then.

Corbyn was also ahead of his time in seeking to engage Iran constructively. He hosted a call-in show on an Iranian TV channel for three years from 2009 to 2012 even though he knew that at the time such activities would seem to rule him out from ever being a serious contender to lead the Labour Party. But in 2015, the Conservative government of the UK, along with those of the United States, France and Germany joined in signing a far reaching nuclear agreement with Tehran.

Corbyn’s economic positions have long been despised by the Western liberal intellectual elites who have been spared the price of having their livelihoods destroyed by such policies. He strongly advocates using the power of government to encourage the rebuilding of major national industries and manufacturing power. These views are hardly radical, Robert Skidelsky, one of the most influential UK economists of the past generation has given significant support to Corbyn’s proposal of a National Investment Bank. These policies are neither Marxist nor revolutionary. But they can certainly be described as Social Democratic and humane.

Corbyn is no unprincipled careerist either. In voting his convictions and his conscience, he puts 99 percent of the UK parliamentarians of his generation to shame. Between 1997 and 2010, during the Labour governments of Blair and Gordon Brown, Corbyn voted most often against the official party line than any other member of parliament (MP) – a total of 428 times and an astonishing figure. In 2005 he was labeled the second most rebellious Labour MP of all time when his party ran the country.

One of the few areas Corbyn was clearly ambiguous on was the question of whether the UK should remain in the 28-nation European Union or leave it, and even here his ambivalence appeared honestly come by and reflected the genuine divisions in his country. Corbyn recognized the enormous differences between both extremes that have been tearing the British public apart on the EU issue.

Ironically, only Donald Trump in the United States – a figure for whom Corbyn certainly has no personal or policy sympathy whatsoever – is comparable to the degree to which he has defied the Conventional Wisdoms of the political media establishment yet done impressively well in fighting elections that were supposed to be impossible.

In fact, the record and pattern of Corbyn’s career has been very clear: His real “crime”- which he has repeated consistently – is to be years, often decades, ahead of Conventional Wisdom.

In routine, tranquil times, people like Corbyn are usually seen as troublemakers or even as dangerous lunatics. But at times of crisis when the wisdom of mediocrities is exposed as worthless, such figures prove vital to national survival.

When told that General James Wolfe, the UK’s one brilliant general of the mid-18th century, was believed to be insane, King George II replied “Mad is he? Then I wish he’d bite some of my other generals!”

The UK political establishment has sneered at Jeremy Corbyn’s bark. Perhaps it is time they need to experience his bite.

August 13, 2018 Posted by | Economics, Militarism, Timeless or most popular | , | 2 Comments

Foreign Power in American Democracy? Guess Which One?

By Frank Scott | Legalienate | August 7, 2018

Americans schooled by films, comics, sitcoms and other forms of capital media might well believe Russia invaded the USA during our 18th century revolution and that’s why we’ve been enemies ever since. Actually, the USA and its future European lap dogs, along with Japan, invaded Russia in 1918 under various pretenses covering the need to destroy an uprising that had the gall to replace a holy family of royal wealth with some stupid ideals about ending poverty and promoting actual rule by a democratic majority.

That bloody foreign intrusion into a civil war which further wrecked an economy already near total destruction as a result of the First World War, saw Russia lose more lives than any other country involved and was a preview of more recent history; the present assault on its borders by NATO, all following in the same imperial footsteps to the current moment of reducing innocent Americans into a near frenzied psycho-neurotic mob over alleged horrors committed to our cherished democracy by evil Russians.

That religiously worshipped fictional system has never in history existed nor produced one American president actually elected by a majority of the electorate. In fact, the image of a supposedly “brutal authoritarian thug” Putin, a description widely accepted by duped twits under merciless American mind management, received a much larger share of the Russian electorate’s voting support than either the despicable or deplorable lesser evil candidates in the last billionaire’s campaign we have been taught to call “our” democracy. This produced the frenzy of established power’s brain assault committed on a public with minds so reduced to pulp it may be too late for some to survive even with decent emergency treatment. Which they might only get in a foreign country given the private profit crazed madness in our alleged “health care” market. In fact, if paying a private insurance company before being able to acquire the services of a doctor or nurse is “health care”, then paying a pimp in order to acquire the services of a sex worker is “love care”. But away with logic and back to the supposed identity of a foreign force wreaking havoc with our cherished national perversion passing for democracy.

While hate crazed elders of the bureaucratic un-intelligence class formerly seen as enemies of the people take on the role of heroic fighters for the masses, the president elected by millions in the usual minority vote for bogus chief executive is treated as a treasonous, racist, homophobic, sexist, child molesting, bank robbing, unsafe driver and any other charge possible by almost all establishment voices. He certainly is a rich, arrogant, egomaniacal super twit, but his crude dim-witted honesty over-qualifies him for the job of CEO of a rich, arrogant, egomaniacal nation programmed to think itself god’s gift to humanity and what more regular presidential puppets of wealth have called the “essential” nation. And truthfully, what other giant of morality and intellect could spend trillions on war, billions on pets, and leave hundreds of thousands of its people living in the street? Such is the marketing fiction forcing insanity into the minds of near helpless consumers of commodified crap in diets leading to digestive and psychological disorders bordering on terminal social malfunction. These are usually diagnosed as personal problems needing therapy and drug cures, which bring massive private profits to a dwindling minority and massive public loss to an expanding majority.

Meanwhile, Trump’s alleged treasonous love affair with Putin occupies consciousness controllers and their near helpless consumers while Trump’s burying his economic face in Netanyahu’s political crotch attracts attention only from those long trying to wake the nation to its government falling under the control of a foreign power, Israel, where all manner of atrocities both moral and financial are excused under the banner of protecting the only democracy in the middle east. This lie is greater than the one sold here about our own minority rule cartel but helps perversely rationalize the need to slaughter, pillage, and destroy much of the Islamic world in pursuit of racial supremacy to be enjoyed by those who shout loudest that racial supremacy must be fought. Except when they practice it.

While the breast-fed-into-adulthood brigades swallow tales of Russian meddling in our billionaire financed minority perversion of democracy, Israel’s continued role in getting the USA to murder hundreds of thousands in the middle east increasingly moves to extend the fanatic bloodletting to Iran. Always in Israeli sights because it is totally disrespectful of European rule, given both its fundamental Islamic stance against much of modernity but mostly western values seen as immoral – because they frequently are – and its long history dating from ancient times of being both a global and more recently local power not given to taking guff from anyone. It has always been critical of the most blatant western invasion of the 20th century in the establishment of a euro-colony in Palestine and the total disregard for the people who’ve lived there since biblical times. How dare they disrespect the only other “essential” nation, along with the U.S.A. Are they crazy or what?

The perennially facing extermination mindset of the Israelis has dominated American politics since before that nation’s origins, officially in 1948 but pending since long before the days of Nazi Zionist partnership to make Palestine the home for Jews seeking a separate and superior homeland. The later bloody Nazi assault, murders and ethnic cleansing inflicted on lower economic class European Jews who could not afford to buy their way out, as their one percent did, has become the most well known, publicized and often fictionalized assault on humanity ever recorded in global consciousness. This even after the facts of western murders of countless millions in colonializing much of the world, and especially here in the USA where entire nations of indigenous people were wiped out or ethnically cleansed and where American Jews, descended from immigrants, far outnumber American Indians, the horror of the European Jewish experience takes precedence over what was done to native Americans. And Trump, like every single president before him, has not only embraced every fictional foundation story to cover injustice, but unlike previous hypocrites who did it only for the money provided by the Israeli lobby, he probably believes it and thus may be even more dangerous.

So as the saber rattling toward Iran increases, with the most extreme racists in the USA and Israel licking their chops over the thought of wiping out more Middle Eastern people, the mind boggling idiocy of alleged Russian involvement in organized crime in America – the electoral system – approaches sending millions to a mental health crisis center, none of them able to afford the drugs needed to possibly calm their over stressed minds. And the leaders in this rush to further crisis for capital are not the usual right wing loonies who used to find commies under their beds, but what passes for sophisticated neo-liberals who unashamedly assume the role of the most demented force in American politics and one that can almost make the insect brain in the white house seem thoughtful by comparison.

The idea that a nation which suffered more than any other with 25 million deaths in the two capitalist “world” wars, which saw its country invaded, bombed and reduced to starvation and cannibalism by this bloody experience, is a threat to America which by comparison lost less than half a million people – some .02% of the Russian total – is one that can only be placed into consciousness by creating a vast pool of unconsciousness. Americans with knowledge of material reality would not accept the dreadful drivel being poured into their heads, which is why rulers are pouring it on faster, and with more fury. If it truly is darkest just before the dawn, we are hopefully experiencing what will become the most shining burst of light imaginable. Hopefully non-nuclear.

August 11, 2018 Posted by | Timeless or most popular, Wars for Israel | , , , | 2 Comments

Hezbollah’s Reasons of Victory: Its Strategies and Readiness

By Sondoss Al Asaad | American Herald Tribune | August 11, 2018

On the 14th of August 2006, the Lebanese resistance of Hezbollah announced its great victory over the Zionists. In that aggressive war, the Zionists had already set three goals. First, to eliminate the arsenal of Hezbollah rockets, i.e. to destroy its long-range and medium-range missile capability. Second, to assassinate Hezbollah Secretary-General Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah. Third, to destroy the resistance’s infrastructure.

Earlier, Hezbollah thwarted these goals as its leadership showed a remarkable coherence and an unexpected command and control system. The ‘Operation of Khallet Warda,’ in Aayta al-Shaab, on the morning of the 13th of July 2006, during which two Zionist soldiers had been captured; was comprehensively analyzed by the resistance.

Judge Eliyahu Winograd, who chaired 2006 Lebanon’s War Inquiry, mentioned that the Zionist decision-makers’ political, military, and security failures, during the war, have been notable. Obviously, the enemy’s lack of strategic planning reflects the major imbalance regarding its system of command and control. Besides, the enemy admits on various occasions that the superiority of Hezbollah’s command and control system is comprehensive and can hardly be beaten.

Due to the absence of readiness, Hezbollah has been able to penetrate the Zionists’ internal front and to heavily bombard it; causing material damages and the displacement of the northern settlers. Whilst as for Hezbollah’s community, everyone knows his duties, the measures, the procedures, and the alternative plans. This level of organization is highly prearranged. Secrecy and the thorough readiness by Hezbollah at the security, civil, health, political and media levels is also distinguished.

Following the 2000 liberation, the resistance has been working hard to fortify its internal front, by both its leaders and cadres. It had taken advantage of its previous experience in 1993 and 1996 and developed its capabilities to meet any unexpected challenge. Undoubtedly, in the case of regular resistance movements or armies, as soon as leadership disintegrates; brigades and squads surrender. In order to avoid this, Hezbollah makes sure that every individual knows the entire process, how, where, why and when.

The Zionists can scarcely understand Hezbollah’s command and sophisticated control system and the strength of its communications network. It can neither break the resistance’s chains nor can it weaken its movement. Hezbollah’s leadership have many alternatives during the time of war. In addition, there is always many possible plans and answerers to the ‘What if’ questions.

For instance, when Hezbollah’s former Secretary General Sayyed Abbas al-Musawi was assassinated in 1992, the resistance operations accelerate and escalate in southern Lebanon as for Hezbollah there are many alternatives. Indeed, what the enemy considers an obstacle that must be removed is, to the resistance, a new opportunity to ferociously confront them.

In the aftermath of 2000, Hezbollah developed its missile capabilities, both quantitatively and qualitatively. This is one of the reasons for the flexibility of the resistance. In addition, it is the reason why the enemy failed during 2006 to destroy Hezbollah’s medium and long-range missiles.

Hezbollah’s leadership demonstrated the coherence of its command and control system and had already prepared enough answers and possibilities. In a direct response to the enemy’s bombardment of the resistance front positions, Hezbollah’s commanders held an assessment meeting. They met to assess the readiness and prepare answers to the ‘What if’ question. At a press conference, following the operation, Sayyed Nasrallah highlighted that the resistance has a good grip on the rules of the game.

On the following day, some 40 Zionist hostile jets took off; with smart US-made bombs, and they shortly issued signals, which means that they accurately achieved their targets. The reality was quite different. From the Zionist perspective, the final crushing of the resistance is only a matter of time for they thought that its leadership has been weakened and that Sayyed Nasrallah has fled to Damascus.

The resolution of the war had already been taken by the Zionist entity. For its part, the resistance was fully ready to confront and plans for evacuating the citizens had been already set. The enemy launched broad and subsequent attacks on Hezbollah positions throughout southern Lebanon and demolished all bridges over the Litany River. It targeted civilians, destroyed the resistance’s headquarters in Beirut’s Southern Suburb and deployed its naval units.

The enemy estimated that the war would not last long and considered that Hezbollah would not be able to respond to attacks. However, on 14 July 2006, the resistance retaliated against the hostile barge, which had attacked the Southern Suburb.

The surprise tactic has been long utilized by Hezbollah throughout the years of confronting its enemy, despite its possession of technological and huge reconnaissance aircraft and satellites. The enemy also cannot predict what kind of surprises or defense operation could be carried out by the resistance “To Haifa and beyond Haifa,” as stressed by Sayyed Nasrallah.

During a televised speech, Sayyed Nasrallah unveiled its first distinguished surprise, saying, “The surprises that I have already promised you has begun, look at the hostile Zionist barge it is burning.” The bombing of the barge was a severe shock and a clear sign that it would severely be punished by the resistance for hitting Lebanese residential areas and infrastructure.

Before the July 2006 war, the Zionists envisioned Hezbollah as the upgraded version of Palestinian resistance of the 1980s. In the evidence, they managed their wars depending on this version, including The Operation Accountability in 1993, The Operation Grapes of Wrath in 1996, The Liberation Process in 2000 up to The July 2006 war. However, Hezbollah has established its own concepts. It has adopted a special ideology associated with the doctrine of Wilayat al-faqih’s concepts.

These concepts maintain that the resistance is a national revolutionary movement of the people, who are oppressed. Therefore, the resistance and the people are a unified solid whole; one body known as the resistance society. The resistance has promoted and reinforced its front. It has a unified internal and military front while the enemy has not considered this during the July 2006 war.

August 11, 2018 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Solidarity and Activism, Timeless or most popular, Video | , , , | 1 Comment

Easter Island people want return of their sacred statue, stolen by imperial Brits

Moai sculpture from Easter Island in the British Museum © Veronika Lukasova / Global Look Press

RT | August 9, 2018

The Rapa Nui people of Easter Island are asking the British Museum to return one of the island’s sacred Moai statues, stolen 150 years ago by British sailors. It’s one of the many artifacts looted by the UK in its imperial days.

British Royal Navy sailors took the 2.42-meter (almost 8ft) tall Moai figure from Easter Island in 1868 and presented it to Queen Victoria in 1869. She, in turn, gifted it to the British Museum. No Moai statue has ever been precisely dated, but they are estimated to be at least 400 years old. This one’s name, Hoa Hakananai’a, ironically has been translated as “lost or stolen friend,” among other variants.

Now representatives of the native Easter Island Rapa Nui tribe have penned a letter to the British Museum asking for its return. It has received the backing of the national treasuries minister of Chile, of which Eastern Island is a part.

Hoa Hakananai’a is just one of a myriad of historic artifacts held in the British Museum, whose dubious means of acquisition is causing calls for repatriation. So far, the British government has been reluctant to yield to those calls.

Some of the most notable of those treasures include the Koh-i-noor diamond, taken from India and also presented to Queen Victoria in the mid-19th century. Another is the Rosetta Stone, discovered by Napoleon’s French Army in the late-18th century, which ended up in Britain in the early 1800s. There are also the Elgin Marbles from Greece, named after the Earl of Elgin, who in 1801 procured them from the Ottoman Empire, then the rulers of Greece.

In all of these cases, the original countries’ governments want their treasures back. With the Elgin Marbles, even UNESCO has interjected with a proposal to mediate the dispute.
UK authorities are resisting any calls to repatriate the artifacts. Their chief arguments being that the British Museum offers better conditions for their preservation and study.

August 9, 2018 Posted by | Timeless or most popular | | 1 Comment

India’s ‘Tibet card’ is a bitter legacy

By M K Bhadrakumar | Indian Punchline | August 9, 2018

A sensational report on Tuesday by the Japanese publication Nikkei that Prime Minister Narendra Modi discussed a Faustian deal on Tibet with Chinese President Xi Jinping stretches credulity. The report citing Indian sources claimed that Modi government is dumping the Tibetan issue in anticipation of the death of the Dalai Lama as quid pro quo by Beijing on a partial border settlement.

It is a curious report, to say the least. First, one would like to think that Modi being a staunch Hindu, will not negotiate over the death of someone who is still alive. Period. Second, Xi has a stated position, repeated ad nauseum, that China will never make concessions on its territories, and there is no reason to doubt the Chinese leader’s resolve. Third, even if such a diabolical exchange had taken place at Wuhan on an explosive topic (which had contributed to the 1962 conflict), it cannot possibly become bazaar gossip. India is not a banana republic.

So, why has such an attempt been made to scandalize Modi as someone raring to dump the ‘Tibetan cause’? One reason could be that the Japanese publication, which has a record of Sinophobia, simply vandalized the Wuhan summit in a continuing attempt to stall any improvement in India-China relations. Quite possibly, motivated Indians put the publication onto it.

For, it is no secret that Modi’s initiative to improve relations with China lacks acceptability within sections of our so-called ‘strategic community’ –  think tankers, media persons, ‘China experts’ and so on – who for reasons of their own appear to have convinced themselves that Sino-Indian geopolitical rivalry must inexorably run its course until such time as Delhi can negotiate with Beijing from a position of strength.

Having said that, the fact remains that there has been a flurry of media reports lately on Tibet. They have focused attention on the tumultuous life and times of the Karmapa Lama. In particular, following his recent remarks about returning to India after a yearlong sojourn in the United States, there is an animated discussion going on over this topic.

It appears that the Indian security establishment, which viewed him as a ‘Chinese spy’ and had kept him under close surveillance for almost two decades in a remote monastery in Dharamsala, has had a profound rethink in the most recent weeks and is now beseeching him to come back to India. It seems that the Indian agencies have made a seductive offer of prime land (5-acre sprawling estate) in Delhi to set up the Karmapa’s Hqs on a grand scale.

Many of these reports are so obviously based on ‘spin’ by intelligence operatives themselves. Now, spooks are creators perfectly capable of constructing a world that works on the same emotional basis as successful soap operas. So, what is the soap opera here about?

Put differently: How come the government has had a change of heart with regard to 32-year old Karmapa in the downstream of the Wuhan summit in end-April?

More to the point, Karmapa has been living in America for over a year and it is inconceivable that the CIA never got to know about his presence on a lavish 150-acre estate in the Wharton State Forest Area in New Jersey that has been ‘gifted’ to him — purportedly by a Taiwanese couple. In fact, his remarks about his intention to return to India were transmitted via Radio Free Asia, which is known to be a US intelligence outfit.

To be sure, the whole sordid soap opera stinks to the heavens. As the Nikkei report on Tuesday hints, there are all sorts of interest groups (within and outside India), who want the Trans-Himalayan gravy train to Lhasa to keep running. But isn’t it in India’s long-term interests that Tibet-related issues do not remain a point of discord in the Sino-Indian relationship?

It is Modi’s call, finally. After all, this is a bitter legacy which is not his creation and, therefore, he is best placed than any of his predecessors to put a full stop to the delusional belief that we are holding a ‘Tibet card’ with a unique potential to leverage Chinese policies toward India. Read the essay by Ambassador Stobdan, one of our best experts on the politics of Tibetan Buddhism – The Flight of the Karmapa is Further Proof That India Has No Tibet Card, here.

August 9, 2018 Posted by | Mainstream Media, Warmongering, Militarism, Timeless or most popular | , , , | Leave a comment

‘Farmer terrorism’ is the new Jewish settler slogan justifying the destruction of crops

By Ramona Wadi | MEMO | August 7, 2018

In less than three months, Jewish settlers have destroyed over 2,000 trees and grapevines in the occupied West Bank. Rights group B’Tselem has issued a detailed report on this destruction, including testimony from Palestinian farmers. Bales of hay and barley fields were also destroyed. The destruction wrought by Israel’s settler-colonists equates Palestinian agriculture to terrorism; slogans sprayed on Palestinian property following the destruction included “No to farmer terrorism”.

The personal testimonies show that Israel has once again refused to act in order to deter settler violence against Palestinians and their land. Ultimately, the aim is to displace Palestinians forcibly by terrorising those seeking access to their own land. “This process has erected invisible walls throughout the West Bank, which Palestinians know crossing will expose them to violence and even danger to their lives,” says B’Tselem.

Israel is using complementary forms of violence: direct destruction by targeting crops and using the same destruction to levy a psychological threat against the colonised population. In the documented cases, the destruction was so severe that new plants have to be cultivated, thus having a negative impact on the sliver of economic independence that Palestinians can gain from agriculture. There is an outcome of resilience mingled with imposed resignation; the farmers will still tend to their fields yet the threat of another round of settler violence fuelled by impunity is always imminent. No matter how well rights organisations document the violations, though, the Palestinians have no recourse other than awareness. This is partly because Israel has moved ahead in terms of normalising colonial expansion.

Hassan ‘Issa discovered that 168 out of 250 grapevines in his fields had been destroyed by settlers. “What happened to my vines feels like a terrible injustice, and I feel incredibly frustrated and sad.” It is painful to read this. Compare the vagueness of ‘Issa’s statement — made in the knowledge that there are no rights for the colonised in apartheid Israel — with the threat left by the settlers: “No to farmer terrorism.” The value of people and land is misplaced to set the accelerated pace for forced displacement and a re-enactment of the image of Palestine being barren, one of the false premises behind Palestine’s colonisation by Israel. The only difference is that Israel now prefers sustained acts of violence that are documented and discussed almost routinely.

“Farmer terrorism” is, of course, a complete falsehood, yet it is on such premises that expansion has been facilitated. The more that Israel utilises such absurd claims, the further it is removed from reprimand by the international community. This lends Israel ample time and space — and total immunity — to construct its variety of “terror” narratives to make such purported threats endemic to its settler-colonial presence. Why would anyone even seek to challenge the notion of “farmer terrorism”? At first glance, it is void of any logic; a second reading flaunts its depravity, embodied by state and settlers alike.

Palestinian resilience has always laid bare the Zionist myths. Having no other means to sustain itself, Israel is eager to create the conditions for myths to become a manifested reality, even if it means acknowledging Palestinian existence through accusations which serve to embellish its purported “security concerns”. Nothing, though, justifies the wanton destruction of crops by illegal Jewish settlers or anyone else.

August 7, 2018 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Timeless or most popular | , , , , | Leave a comment

Hiroshima Fictions and Facts

By John Laforge | CounterPunch | August 7, 2018

About the US atomic destruction of Hiroshima and Nagasaki in 1945, popular accounts still stick to the false but “greatest generation” story that, “Without [them], more Japanese would have died in a US assault on the islands, as would have tens of thousands of Americans,” as Mike Hashimoto wrote in the Dallas Morning News in 2016.

The New York Times reported that year, “Many historians believe the bombings [of] Hiroshima and then Nagasaki, which together took the lives of more than 200,000 people, saved lives on balance, since an invasion of the islands would have led to far greater bloodshed.” Many historians, perhaps; but not that many.

On the contrary the chief historian of the US Nuclear Regulatory Commission, J. Samuel Walker, wrote in the journal Diplomatic History in 1990, “The consensus among scholars is that the bomb was not needed to avoid an invasion of Japan and to end the war within a relatively short time. It is clear that alternatives to the bomb existed and that Truman and his advisers knew it.”

Historian Martin Sherwin has debunked the tale of the “good” atom bombs, citing in his 2003 book A World Destroyed “a ‘considerable body’ of new evidence that suggested the bomb may have cost, rather than saved, American lives. That is, if the US had not been so determined to complete, test, and finally use the bomb, it might have arranged the Japanese surrender weeks earlier, preventing much bloodshed on Okinawa.”

Historian Gar Alperovitz wrote in Atomic Diplomacy (Vintage Books, 1967), “available evidence shows the atomic bomb was not needed to end the war or to save lives — and that this was understood by American leaders at the time.” Further declassification of wartime secrets and 28 additional years of research make Alperovitz’s definitive 1995 history The Decision to Use the Atomic Bomb even stronger on this point. 

Admirals and Generals Destroy the Myth

Combat veterans and bomber crews defeated Japan well before August 6, 1945 by fighting and dying in dreadful battles over Midway, Guadalcanal, Iwo Jima, Okinawa, and elsewhere, a fact corroborated by dozens of military commanders, as Maj. Gen. Curtis LeMay, head of the 21st Bomber Command, boasted. LeMay said publicly on Sept. 20, 1945: “The war would have been over in two weeks without the Russians entering and without the atomic bomb.” Asked to clarify, the general who directed the destruction of 67 Japanese cities using mass incendiary attacks doubled down saying, “The atomic bomb had nothing to do with the end of the war at all.”

Gen. George Kenny, who commanded parts of the Army Air Forces in the Pacific, was asked in 1969 for his opinion and said, “I think we had the Japs [sic] licked anyhow. I think they would have quit probably within a week or so of when they did quit.” Alperovitz notes further that Adm. Lewis Strauss, an assistant to WW II Navy Secretary James Forrestal, wrote to historian Robert Albion in 1960: “[F]rom the Navy’s point of view, there are statements by Admiral King, Admiral Halsey, Admiral Radford, Admiral Nimitz and others who expressed themselves to the effect that neither the atomic bomb nor the proposed invasion of the Japanese mainland were necessary to produce the surrender.”

In Mandate for Change, President Dwight Eisenhower admitted that when Sec. of War Henry Stimson told him atomic bombs were going to be used, “I voiced to him my grave misgivings, first on the basis of my belief that Japan was already defeated and that dropping the bomb was completely unnecessary….”

President Truman’s Chief of Staff, Adm. William Leahy, agreed. As Robert Lifton and Greg Mitchell, report in Hiroshima in America: 50 Years of Denial, Leahy said, “It is my opinion that the use of this barbarous weapon at Hiroshima and Nagasaki was of no material assistance in our war against Japan. The Japanese were already defeated and ready to surrender.…” Even official histories have debunked the fiction. “[T]he US Strategic Bombing Survey published its conclusion that Japan would likely have surrendered in 1945 without atomic bombing, without a Soviet declaration of war, and without an American invasion,” Alperovitz recounted in The Decision. 

Still, the myth that the mass destruction of 200,000 was necessary to save lives is believed by millions in the US who refuse to consider or accept the historical record. This greatest of the “greatest generation’s” yarns may help some sleep at night, and to think better of killing civilians than does the rest of the world, but it doesn’t help abolish nuclear weapons.

John LaForge is a Co-director of Nukewatch, a peace and environmental justice group in Wisconsin, and edits its newsletter.

August 7, 2018 Posted by | Deception, Timeless or most popular, War Crimes | | 1 Comment

Are Globalists Plotting a Counter-Revolution?

By Pat Buchanan • Unz Review • August 7, 2018

On meeting with the EU’s Jean-Claude Juncker last month, Donald Trump tweeted: “Both the U.S. and the E.U. drop all Tariffs, Barriers and Subsidies! That would finally be Free Market and Fair Trade.”

Did Larry Kudlow somehow get access to Trump’s phone?

We know not. But, on hearing this, Steve Forbes, Stephen Moore and Arthur Laffer broke into the “Hallelujah” chorus of Handel’s “Messiah.”

“Amen,” they thundered in The New York Times.

Trump should declare “total trade disarmament” to be national policy and make free trade his “legacy” to America. Such a proclamation, they wrote, would assure Trump the “moral high ground” in the global debate and transform him from “evil disrupter of international commerce to potential savior.”

For free trade is always and ever a “win-win for trading partners.”

To read the Times op-ed is to appreciate that what we are dealing with here is an ideology, a political religion, a creed, a cult.

For consider the fruits of free trade policy during the last 25 years: the frozen wages of U.S. workers, $12 trillion in U.S. trade deficits, 55,000 factories lost, 6 million manufacturing jobs gone, China surpassing the U.S in manufacturing, all causing a backlash that pushed a political novice to the Republican nomination and into the presidency.

To maintain a belief in the superiority of free trade to economic patriotism, in the face of such results, is to recognize that this belief system is impervious to contradictory proof.

Still, the enduring enthusiasm of free trade zealots is not the only sign that GOP globalists, having learned nothing and forgotten nothing, are looking to a post-Trump era to resurrect their repudiated dogmas.

In USA Today, Jeffrey Miron, director of economic studies at the libertarian flagship think tank Cato Institute, wrote last week:

“The solution to America’s immigrant problems is open borders. … Open borders means no walls, fences, screenings at airports, ICE … deportations, detention centers or immigration courts.”

And what would happen after we declare open borders?

“Immigrants will not flood into America. … Crime will not skyrocket. … Even if values and culture change, so what? … Who says America’s current values — some of them deeply evil — are the right ones?”

Bottom line for Cato’s Miron: If we throw open America’s borders and invite the world to come in and to remake who we are as a nation, “Think about the money we could save and make.”

This is truly economics uber alles, economy before country.

Other open borders and free trade true believers have begun speaking out. Billionaire industrialist Charles Koch, a megadonor to the GOP, has just lashed out at Trump as “divisive” and denounced the “rise in protectionism.”

Nations, organizations and individuals, said Koch, “are doing whatever they can to close themselves off from the new, hold onto the past and prevent change.”

He added, “This is a natural tendency, but it is a destructive one.”

In a pair of tweets, Trump fired back:

“The globalist Koch Brothers, who have become a total joke in real Republican circles, are against Strong Borders and Powerful Trade. I never sought their support because I don’t need their money or bad ideas. I made them richer.

“Their network is highly overrated, I have beaten them at every turn. They want to protect their companies outside the U.S. from being taxed, I’m for America First & the American Worker — a puppet for no one. Two nice guys with bad ideas. Make America Great Again!”

The billionaire Koch brothers, Charles and David, are threatening to have their network, Americans for Prosperity, withhold funding from GOP candidates who echo Trump on immigration and trade.

The open borders, free trade ideology of the Kochs, the Cato Institute, and such supply-siders as Moore, Forbes and Laffer, have deep roots in the Republican Party establishment.

Milton Friedman was of this school, as was the longtime editorial page editor of The Wall Street Journal, Bob Bartley, who for years pushed for a constitutional amendment declaring, “There shall be open borders.”

Bartley, somewhat prematurely, predicted that the nation-state was “finished” in the New World Order. Yet, today, as tribalism and nationalism are making a comeback, it looks more like the transnational “New World Order” that may be headed for the dumpster.

As long as Trump is in the White House and the party base is so viscerally behind him and his America First agenda, a renunciation of tariffs or a return to globalism is dead.

But what happens after Trump? Who and what comes next?

Republican recidivism — a return to the rejected open borders, free trade agenda of the Bush Republicans — would ignite a firestorm of protest that would tear the party of Trump apart.

Yet, while these ideas have lost Middle America, they are alive and well among the establishment elites of both parties, who have also not given up on a foreign policy of using America’s economic and military power to attempt to convert mankind to democracy.

Copyright 2018 Creators.com.

August 7, 2018 Posted by | Economics, Militarism, Timeless or most popular | | Leave a comment

More Lies About the White Helmets

Is resettling a terrorist front group in the West a good idea?

By Philip Giraldi • Unz Review • August 7, 2018

When is a terrorist group not a terrorist group? Apparently the answer is that it ceases to be terrorist when it terrorizes someone who is an enemy of the United States. The most prominent recent example is the Mujaheddin e Khalq (MEK), a murderous Iranian Marxist cult which assassinated five Americans in the 1970s as part of its campaign against the Shah’s government. It was removed from the State Department terrorist list in 2012 by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton after it had promised not to kill any more Americans but really because it had bought the support of prominent politicians to include Elaine Chao, Rudy Giuliani, Newt Gingrich, and John Bolton. It also had the behind the scenes endorsement of both the Israeli Mossad and CIA, both of whom have been using it in their operations to kill Iranians and damage the country’s infrastructure. Someone high up in the federal government, perhaps Hillary or even President Obama himself, must have decided that terrorists who kill only Iranians deserve a get out of jail free card from the State Department.

There are other examples of cynical doublespeak from the Syrian conflict, including labeling rebels against the Damascus government “freedom fighters” when in reality they were as often as not allied with the al-Qaeda affiliated group Al-Nusra or even with ISIS. Frequently they received training and weapons from Washington only to turn around and either join Al-Nusra and ISIS as volunteers or surrender their weapons to them.

But perhaps there is no bigger fraud making the rounds than the so-called White Helmets. The recent media coverage derives from the documentary The White Helmets, which was produced by the group itself and tells a very convincing tale promoted as “the story of real-life heroes and impossible hope.” It is a very impressive piece of propaganda, so much so that it has won numerous awards including the Oscar for Best Documentary Short last year and the White Helmets themselves were nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize. More to the point, however, is the undeniable fact that the documentary has helped shape the public understanding of what is going on in Syria, describing the government in Damascus in purely negative terms.

The fawning Hollywood and Congressional depictions of the group go something like this: “the White Helmets are an ‘heroic’ impartial non-government humanitarian volunteer group that engages in ‘first response’ emergency rescue and medical treatment for all those who have been impacted by the fighting in Syria. The Syrian government hates the group because it assists victims of the fighting who are either rebels or living in rebel held areas. Recently, with the Syrian Army closing in on the last White Helmet affiliates still operating in the country, the Israeli government, assisted by the United States, staged an emergency humanitarian evacuation of the group’s members and their families to Israel and then on to Jordan.”

Virtually all the mainstream media coverage of the White Helmets is bogus, but by far the most ridiculous account of the Exodus from Syria came from the BBC. For those who are not familiar with it, the BBC, which once upon a time had a reputation for journalistic integrity, has become one of the worst pro-government propaganda shills of all time. Reading its articles is even worse than having a similar go at The Washington Post, which is the prime newspaper exemplar of fake news and phony journalism pretending to be a respectable news source in the United States. Let’s face it, Donald Trump has a point. Nearly all of the mainstream media lies persistently these days but some sources are worse than others. People complain about Fox, and rightly so, but CNN is the absolute pits when it comes to slanting its coverage, as is MSNBC.

BBC’s article is entitled Syria conflict: White Helmets evacuated by Israel. It makes the following statements, many coming directly from Israeli official sources, regarding the White Helmets, its activities and the group’s relationship to some governments, to include Britain:

  • “The IDF said they had ‘completed a humanitarian effort to rescue members of a Syrian civil organization and their families’, saying there was an ‘immediate threat to their lives.’ The transfer of the displaced Syrians through Israel was an exceptional humanitarian gesture.”
  • “Although Israel is not directly involved in the Syria conflict, the two countries have been in a state of war for decades. Despite the intervention, the IDF said that ‘Israel continues to maintain a non-intervention policy regarding the Syrian conflict.’”
  • “A statement from Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt and International Development Secretary Penny Mordaunt said: ‘White Helmets have been the target of attacks and, due to their high profile, we judged that, in these particular circumstances, the volunteers required immediate protection. We pay tribute to the brave and selfless work that White Helmet volunteers have done to save Syrians on all sides of the conflict.’”
  • “Their official name is the Syrian Civil Defense and it began in early 2013 as an organization of volunteers from all walks of life, including electricians and builders. Its main task soon became to rescue civilians in war zones in the immediate aftermath of air strikes, and it says its volunteers have saved the lives of more than 100,000 people during the civil war.”

The BBC story could have been written by the White Helmets themselves or by their press department. Or alternatively by the Israeli Foreign Ministry. First of all, the Israelis do not do humanitarian gestures. They helped bail out the White Helmets at the request of the U.S. because capture by the Syrians would have produced embarrassing revelations about how the group was funded and what its affiliation with terrorists was all about. And Israel’s denial of involvement in Syria is nonsense, unless one considers demonstrated collaboration with the terrorist groups punctuated by nearly weekly bombing and missile attacks to be non-involvement.

The British too are into the deception up to their eyeballs. The comment by Hunt and Mordaunt is complete fabrication regarding what the White Helmets represent. The same goes for the BBC account of how the group developed, which comes directly from the White Helmet’s own propaganda division as amplified by Hollywood and the U.S. and U.K. governments.

Just as important as what is said about the White Helmets’ activities is the exclusion of a great deal of credible negative reporting on the group. The carefully edited scenes of heroism under fire that have been filmed and released worldwide conceal the White Helmets’ relationship with the al-Qaeda affiliated group Jabhat al-Nusra and its participation in the torture and execution of “rebel” opponents. Indeed, the White Helmets only operate in rebel held territory, which enables them to shape the narrative both regarding who they are and what is occurring on the ground.

Exploiting their access to the western media, the White Helmets thereby de facto became a major source of “eyewitness” news regarding what was going on in those many parts of Syria where European and American journalists were quite rightly afraid to go. It was all part of a broader largely successful “rebel” effort to manufacture fake news that depicts the Damascus government as engaging in war crimes directed against civilians, an effort that led to several attacks on government forces and facilities by the U.S. military.

The White Helmets travel to bombing sites with their film crews trailing behind them. Once at the sites, with no independent observers, they are able to arrange or even stage what is filmed to conform to their selected narrative which consistently promotes tales of government atrocities against civilians to encourage outside military intervention in Syria and bring about regime change in Damascus. The White Helmets were, for example, the propagators of the totally false but propagandistically effective claims regarding the government use of so-called “barrel bombs” against civilians.

Peter Ford, British Ambassador in Damascus from 2003-2006, recently described the group in an audio interview saying, “The White Helmets are jihadi auxiliaries. They are not, as claimed by themselves and by their supporters… simple rescuers. They are not volunteers. They are paid professionals of disinformation.” He noted particularly the large size of the organization’s “press department”, saying, “This gives us an idea what the priority is for this very dubious organization… All their activities are directed at mobilizing Western opinion behind the jihadis with whom they associate. They co-locate their centers with the Al-Qaeda organization known as Al-Nusra and with other militant groups such as Jaish al-Islam. They have in the past been shown associating with and waving the flags of ISIS.”

The group is currently largely funded by a number of non-government organizations (NGOs) as well as governments, including the United States, Britain and some European Union member states. The U.S. has directly provided $23 million through the USAID (US Agency for International Development) as of 2016 and almost certainly considerably more indirectly. Max Blumenthal has explored in some detail the various funding resources and relationships that the organization draws on, mostly in Europe and the United States.

Perhaps the most serious charge against the White Helmets consists of the evidence that they actively participated in the atrocities, to include torture and murder, carried out by their al-Nusra hosts. There have been numerous photos of the White Helmets operating directly with armed terrorists and also celebrating over the bodies of execution victims and murdered Iraqi soldiers. The group’s jihadi associates regard the White Helmets as fellow “mujahideen” and “soldiers of the revolution.”

So Israel’s celebrated rescue of the White Helmets was little more than a theatrical performance intended to perpetuate the myth that the al-Assad government was thwarted in an attempt to capture and possibly kill an honorable non-partisan group engaged in humanitarian relief for those caught up in a bloody conflict seeking to oust a ruthless dictator. The reality is quite different. The White Helmets were and are part and parcel of the attempt to overthrow a legitimate government and install a regime friendly to western, American and Israeli interests. For Israel in particular the ongoing chaos in Syria was and is part of its plan for dividing all of its neighbors into warring ethnicities and sects, making them less viable as threats to the Jewish state.

The 800 White Helmets rescued reportedly will be resettled in the U.S., Britain and Germany. One hopes those coming to America can end up in Los Angeles, where they would presumably mingle with Hollywood big shots and the usual snowflakes while working on their next documentary. As some of them are most certainly radical Jihadists, it will be interesting to observe exactly how that will play out.

Philip M. Giraldi, Ph.D., is Executive Director of the Council for the National Interest, a 501(c)3 tax deductible educational foundation that seeks a more interests-based U.S. foreign policy in the Middle East. Website is www.councilforthenationalinterest.org, address is P.O. Box 2157, Purcellville VA 20134 and its email is inform@cnionline.org.

August 7, 2018 Posted by | Deception, Fake News, Mainstream Media, Warmongering, Timeless or most popular, Wars for Israel | , , , | Leave a comment

Helsinki summit’s positive fallout on Syria

By M K Bhadrakumar | Indian Punchline | August 6, 2018

In the debris of the Trump-Putin summit at Helsinki on July 16, the understanding reached on the Syrian conflict stands out as a positive outcome. The steady improvement in the politico-military situation in Syria and the easing of rivalries involving the external parties bears this out. Interestingly, a Xinhua report with a Damascus dateline on Sunday highlights this happy outcome of the Helsinki summit, citing Syrian experts.

The big picture is that there seems to be an understanding between Washington and Moscow that in the interests of the stabilization of Syria, the Assad administration regains control of the entire country.

Secondly, having realized that the regime-change agenda in Syria has floundered, the US and other Western powers see the need to secure their interests through negotiating with Russia. The Russians not only spearheaded virtually all the initiatives so far to strike deals with the rebel groups (and thereby avoiding use of military force as far as possible to ‘liberate’ territories from rebel occupation) but also acted as ‘bridge’ between the Syrian government and rebel groups. Indeed, the Russian credibility as reliable negotiators and guarantors has soared.

Thirdly, what emerges in the downstream of the Helsinki summit is that the US desires to withdraw forces from Syria while maintaining its interests in the Kurdish-controlled areas of northern Syria.

The above broad trends find refection in the developments through the past 3-week period both in southern and northern Syria. Thus, the situation on Syria’s southern border with Israel, which had assumed dangerous proportions, has calmed down on the lines that Russian President Vladimir Putin had outlined at the press conference with President Trump in Helsinki on July 16.

That is to say, the terrorist groups controlling the border region with Golan Heights have been vanquished, Syrian forces have gained control of Quneitra province (including the border crossing with Golan Heights) and, most importantly, on August 2, the United Nations Disengagement Observer Force returned to its positions on the line of separation between Syria and the Israeli-occupied territories in the Golan Heights (which it had to leave in 2014 following Israeli pressure tactic to create conditions for Israel’s covert nexus with the terrorist groups.)

Besides, Russian Military Police has also been deployed to Quneitra as guarantors. All in all, suffice to say, the most dangerous front in the conflict has calmed down appreciably in a matter of a fortnight since the Helsinki summit.

Similarly, in northeastern Syria, which is dominated by the Kurdish militia (supported by the US), there are new stirrings. Presumably with the knowledge and concurrence of their US mentors, Kurdish groups have begun talks with Damascus to negotiate the future of their traditional homelands in northeastern regions. The Kurdish groups have claimed that an agreement has been reached with Damascus “to draw a roadmap that would lead to a democratic, decentralized Syria.”

The Kurdish groups will explore the possibility of gaining some measure of local autonomy in the areas they control (a quarter of Syrian territory), whereas, Damascus will prioritize regaining the territories. Clearly, further negotiations are expected and the advantage lies with Syrian government.

Looking ahead, these substantial achievements and the fact that Syrian government has become more stable and is in greater control will give impetus to the efforts at finding a political solution to the conflict. Therefore, the fate of the terrorist groups ensconced in northern Latakia and Idlib in northwestern Syria bordering Turkey is fast becoming a residual issue.

Russia has given more time to Turkey to rein in these groups. The idea is to work out a deal for the terrorist groups to surrender, as has happened in southern Syria, so that fighting and bloodshed can be avoided. A deal may be in the works by the time the planned summit meeting of Turkey, Russia, France and Germany is held in Istanbul on September 7.

The Xinhua report titled Trump-Putin summit yields good results on Syria: experts is here.

August 7, 2018 Posted by | Timeless or most popular | , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

American Pravda: Jews and Nazis

By Ron Unz • Unz Review • August 6, 2018

Around 35 years ago, I was sitting in my college dorm-room closely reading the New York Times as I did each and every morning when I noticed an astonishing article about the controversial new Israeli Prime Minister, Yitzhak Shamir.

Back in those long-gone days, the Gray Lady was strictly a black-and-white print publication, lacking the large color photographs of rap stars and long stories about dieting techniques that fill so much of today’s news coverage, and it also seemed to have a far harder edge in its Middle East reporting. A year or so earlier, Shamir’s predecessor Menacham Begin had allowed his Defense Minister Ariel Sharon to talk him into invading Lebanon and besieging Beirut, and the subsequent massacre of Palestinian women and children in the Sabra and Shatila refugee camps had outraged the world and angered America’s government. This eventually led to Begin’s resignation, with Shamir, his Foreign Minister, taking his place.

Prior to his surprising 1977 election victory, Begin had spent decades in the political wilderness as an unacceptable right-winger, and Shamir had an even more extreme background, with the American mainstream media freely reporting his long involvement in all sorts of high-profile assassinations and terrorist attacks during the 1940s, painting him as a very bad man indeed.

Given Shamir’s notorious activities, few revelations would have shocked me, but this one did. Apparently, during the late 1930s, Shamir and his small Zionist faction had become great admirers of the Italian Fascists and German Nazis, and after World War II broke out, they had made repeated attempts to contact Mussolini and the German leadership in 1940 and 1941, hoping to enlist in the Axis Powers as their Palestine affiliate, and undertake a campaign of attacks and espionage against the local British forces, then share in the political booty after Hitler’s inevitable triumph.

Now the Times clearly viewed Shamir in a very negative light, but it seemed extremely unlikely to me that they would have published such a remarkable story without being absolutely sure of their facts. Among other things, there were long excerpts from the official letters sent to Mussolini ferociously denouncing the “decadent” democratic systems of Britain and France that he was opposing, and assuring Il Duce that such ridiculous political notions would have no future place in the totalitarian Jewish client state they hoped to establish under his auspices in Palestine.

As it happens, both Germany and Italy were preoccupied with larger geopolitical issues at the time, and given the small size of Shamir’s Zionist faction, not much seems to have ever come of those efforts. But the idea of the sitting Prime Minister of the Jewish State having spent his early wartime years as an unrequited Nazi ally was certainly something that sticks in one’s mind, not quite conforming to the traditional narrative of that era which I had always accepted.

Most remarkably, the revelation of Shamir’s pro-Axis past seems to have had only a relatively minor impact upon his political standing within Israeli society. I would think that any American political figure found to have supported a military alliance with Nazi Germany during the Second World War would have had a very difficult time surviving the resulting political scandal, and the same would surely be true for politicians in Britain, France, or most other western nations. But although there was certainly some embarrassment in the Israeli press, especially after the shocking story reached the international headlines, apparently most Israelis took the whole matter in stride, and Shamir stayed in office for another year, then later served a second, much longer term as Prime Minister during 1986-1992. The Jews of Israel apparently regarded Nazi Germany quite differently than did most Americans, let alone most American Jews.

Around that same time, a second intriguing example of this quite different Israeli perspective towards the Nazis also came to my attention. In 1983, Amoz Oz, often described as Israel’s greatest novelist, had published In the Land of Israel to glowing reviews. This book was a collection of lengthy interviews with various representative figures in Israeli society, both moderate and extreme, as well as some coverage of the Palestinians who also lived among them.

Of these ideological profiles, one of the shortest but most widely discussed was that of an especially hard-line political figure, unnamed but almost universally believed to be Ariel Sharon, a conclusion certainly supported by the personal details and physical description provided. Near the very beginning, that figure mentioned that people of his ideological ilk had recently been denounced as “Judeo-Nazis” by a prominent liberal Israeli academic, but rather than reject that label, he fully welcomed it. So the subject generally became known in public discussions as the “Judeo-Nazi.”

That he described himself in such terms was hardly an exaggeration, since he rather gleefully advocated the slaughter of millions of Israel’s enemies, and the vast expansion of Israeli territory by conquest of neighboring lands and expulsion of their populations, along with the free use of nuclear weapons if they or anyone else too strongly resisted such efforts. In his bold opinion, the Israelis and Jews in general were just too soft and meek, and needed to regain their place in the world by once again becoming a conquering people, probably hated but definitely feared. To him, the large recent massacre of Palestinian women and children at Sabra and Shatila was of no consequence whatsoever, and the most unfortunate aspect of the incident was that the killers had been Israel’s Christian Phalangist allies rather than Israeli soldiers themselves.

Now rhetorical excess is quite common among politicians and a shroud of pledged anonymity will obviously loosen many tongues. But can anyone imagine an American or other Western public figure talking in such terms, let alone someone who moves in higher political circles? These days, Donald Trump sometimes Tweets out a crude misspelled insult at 2am, and the American media is aghast in horror. But given that his administration leaks like a sieve, if he routinely boasted to his confidants about possibly slaughtering millions, we surely would have heard about it. For that matter, there seems not the slightest evidence that the original German Nazis ever spoke in such ways privately, let alone while a journalist was carefully taking notes. But the “Judeo-Nazis” of Israel are another story.

As near as I can recall, the last even slightly prominent figure in American public life who declared himself a “Nazi” was George Lincoln Rockwell during the 1960s, and he was much more of a political performance artist than an actual political leader. Even as marginalized a figure as David Duke has always hotly denied such an accusation. But apparently politics in Israel is played by different rules.

In any event, Sharon’s purported utterances seem to have had little negative impact upon his subsequent political career, and after spending some time in the political wilderness after the Lebanon disaster, he eventually served five years as Prime Minister during 2001-2006, although by that later date his views were regularly denounced as too soft and compromising due to the steady rightward drift of the Israeli political spectrum.

Over the years I’ve occasionally made half-hearted attempts to locate the Times article about Shamir that had long stuck in my memory, but have had no success, either because it was removed from the Times archives or more likely because my mediocre search skills proved inadequate. But I’m almost certain that the piece had been prompted by the 1983 publication of Zionism in the Age of the Dictators by Lenni Brenner, an anti-Zionist of the Trotskyite persuasion and Jewish origins. I only very recently discovered that book, which really tells an extremely interesting story.

Brenner, born in 1937, has spent his entire life as an unreconstructed hard-core leftist, with his enthusiasms ranging from Marxist revolution to the Black Panthers, and he is obviously a captive of his views and his ideology. At times, this background impairs the flow of his text, and the periodic allusions to “proletarian,” “bourgeoisie,” and “capitalist classes” sometimes grow a little wearisome, as does his unthinking acceptance of all the shared beliefs common to his political circle. But surely only someone with that sort of fervent ideological commitment would have been willing to devote so much time and effort to investigating that controversial subject and ignoring the endless denunciations that resulted, which even included physical assaults by Zionist partisans.

In any event, his documentation seems completely airtight, and some years after the original appearance of his book, he published a companion volume entitled 51 Documents: Zionist Collaboration with the Nazis, which simply provides English translations of all the raw evidence behind his analytical framework, allowing interested parties to read the material and draw their own conclusions.

Among other things, Brenner provides considerable evidence that the larger and somewhat more mainstream right-wing Zionist faction later led by Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin was almost invariably regarded as a Fascist movement during the 1930s, even apart from its warm admiration for Mussolini’s Italian regime. This was hardly such a dark secret in that period given that its main Palestine newspaper carried a regular column by a top ideological leader entitled “Diary of a Fascist.” During one of the major international Zionist conferences, factional leader Vladimir Zabotinsky entered the hall with his brown-shirted followers in full military formation, leading the chair to ban the wearing of uniforms in order to avoid a riot, and his faction was soon defeated politically and eventually expelled from the Zionist umbrella organization. This major setback was largely due to the widespread hostility the group had aroused after two of its members were arrested by British police for the recent assassination of Chaim Arlosoroff, one of the highest-ranking Zionist officials based in Palestine.

Indeed, the inclination of the more right-wing Zionist factions toward assassination, terrorism, and other forms of essentially criminal behavior was really quite remarkable. For example, in 1943 Shamir had arranged the assassination of his factional rival, a year after the two men had escaped together from imprisonment for a bank robbery in which bystanders had been killed, and he claimed he had acted to avert the planned assassination of David Ben-Gurion, the top Zionist leader and Israel’s future founding-premier. Shamir and his faction certainly continued this sort of behavior into the 1940s, successfully assassinating Lord Moyne, the British Minister for the Middle East, and Count Folke Bernadotte, the UN Peace Negotiator, though they failed in their other attempts to kill American President Harry Truman and British Foreign Minister Ernest Bevin, and their plans to assassinate Winston Churchill apparently never moved past the discussion stage. His group also pioneered the use of terrorist car-bombs and other explosive attacks against innocent civilian targets, all long before any Arabs or Muslims had ever thought of using similar tactics; and Begin’s larger and more “moderate” Zionist faction did much the same. Given that background, it was hardly surprising that Shamir later served as director of assassinations at the Israeli Mossad during 1955-1965, so if the Mossad did indeed play a major role in the assassination of President John F. Kennedy, he was very likely involved.

The cover of the 2014 paperback edition of Brenner’s book displays the commemorative medal struck by Nazi Germany to mark its Zionist alliance, with a Star-of-David on the front face and a Swastika on the obverse. But oddly enough, this symbolic medallion actually had absolutely no connection with the unsuccessful attempts by Shamir’s small faction to arrange a Nazi military alliance during World War II.

Although the Germans paid little attention to the entreaties of that minor organization, the far larger and more influential mainstream Zionist movement of Chaim Weizmann and David Ben-Gurion was something else entirely. And during most of the 1930s, these other Zionists had formed an important economic partnership with Nazi Germany, based upon an obvious commonality of interests. After all, Hitler regarded Germany’s one percent Jewish population as a disruptive and potentially dangerous element which he wanted gone, and the Middle East seemed as good a destination for them as any other. Meanwhile, the Zionists had very similar objectives, and the creation of their new national homeland in Palestine obviously required both Jewish immigrants and Jewish financial investment.

After Hitler had been named Chancellor in 1933, outraged Jews worldwide had quickly launched an economic boycott, hoping to bring Germany to its knees, with London’s Daily Express famously running the banner headline “Judea Declares War on Germany.” Jewish political and economic influence, then just like now, was very considerable, and in the depths of the Great Depression, impoverished Germany needed to export or die, so a large scale boycott in major German markets posed a potentially serious threat. But this exact situation provided Zionist groups with an excellent opportunity to offer the Germans a means of breaking that trade embargo, and they demanded favorable terms for the export of high-quality German manufactured goods to Palestine, together with accompanying German Jews. Once word of this major Ha’avara or “Transfer Agreement” with the Nazis came out at a 1933 Zionist Convention, many Jews and Zionists were outraged, and it led to various splits and controversies. But the economic deal was too good to resist, and it went forward and quickly grew.

The importance of the Nazi-Zionist pact for Israel’s establishment is difficult to overstate. According to a 1974 analysis in Jewish Frontier cited by Brenner, between 1933 and 1939 over 60% of all the investment in Jewish Palestine came from Nazi Germany. The worldwide impoverishment of the Great Depression had drastically reduced ongoing Jewish financial support from all other sources, and Brenner reasonably suggests that without Hitler’s financial backing, the nascent Jewish colony, so tiny and fragile, might easily have shriveled up and died during that difficult period.

Such a conclusion leads to fascinating hypotheticals. When I first stumbled across references to the Ha’avara Agreement on websites here and there, one of the commenters mentioning the issue half-jokingly suggested that if Hitler had won the war, statues would surely have been built to him throughout Israel and he would today be recognized by Jews everywhere as the heroic Gentile leader who had played the central role in reestablishing a national homeland for the Jewish people in Palestine after almost 2000 years of bitter exile.

This sort of astonishing counter-factual possibility is not nearly as totally absurd as it might sound to our present-day ears. We must recognize that our historical understanding of reality is shaped by the media, and media organs are controlled by the winners of major wars and their allies, with inconvenient details often excluded to avoid confusing the public. It is undeniably true that in his 1924 book Mein Kampf, Hitler had written all sorts of hostile and nasty things about Jews, especially those who were recent immigrants from Eastern Europe, but when I read the book back in high school, I was a little surprised to discover that these anti-Jewish sentiments hardly seemed central to his text. Furthermore, just a couple of years earlier, a vastly more prominent public figure such as British Minister Winston Churchill had published sentiments nearly as hostile and nasty, focusing on the monstrous crimes being committed by Bolshevik Jews. In Albert Lindemann’s Esau’s Tears, I was surprised to discover that the author of the famous Balfour Declaration, the foundation of the Zionist project, was apparently also quite hostile to Jews, with an element of his motivation probably being his desire to exclude them from Britain.

Once Hitler consolidated power in Germany, he quickly outlawed all other political organizations for the German people, with only the Nazi Party and Nazi political symbols being legally permitted. But a special exception was made for German Jews, and Germany’s local Zionist Party was accorded complete legal status, with Zionist marches, Zionist uniforms, and Zionist flags all fully permitted. Under Hitler, there was strict censorship of all German publications, but the weekly Zionist newspaper was freely sold at all newsstands and street corners. The clear notion seemed to be that a German National Socialist Party was the proper political home for the country’s 99% German majority, while Zionist National Socialism would fill the same role for the tiny Jewish minority.

In 1934, Zionist leaders invited an important SS official to spend six months visiting the Jewish settlement in Palestine, and upon his return, his very favorable impressions of the growing Zionist enterprise were published as a massive 12-part-series in Joseph Goebbel’s Der Angriff, the flagship media organ of the Nazi Party, bearing the descriptive title “A Nazi Goes to Palestine.” In his very angry 1920 critique of Jewish Bolshevik activity, Churchill had argued that Zionism was locked in a fierce battle with Bolshevism for the soul of European Jewry, and only its victory might ensure amicable future relations between Jew and Gentile. Based on available evidence, Hitler and many of the other Nazi leaders seemed to have reached a somewhat similar conclusion by the mid-1930s.

During that era extremely harsh sentiments regarding Diaspora Jewry were sometimes found in rather surprising quarters. After the controversy surrounding Shamir’s Nazi ties erupted into the headlines, Brenner’s material became the grist for an important article by Edward Mortimer, the longtime Middle East expert at the august Times of London, and the 2014 edition of the book includes some choice extracts from Mortimer’s February 11, 1984 Times piece:

Who told a Berlin audience in March 1912 that “each country can absorb only a limited number of Jews, if she doesn’t want disorders in her stomach. Germany already has too many Jews”?

No, not Adolf Hitler but Chaim Weizmann, later president of the World Zionist Organization and later still the first president of the state of Israel.

And where might you find the following assertion, originally composed in 1917 but republished as late as 1936: “The Jew is a caricature of a normal, natural human being, both physically and spiritually. As an individual in society he revolts and throws off the harness of social obligation, knows no order nor discipline”?

Not in Der Sturmer but in the organ of the Zionist youth organization, Hashomer Hatzair.

As the above quoted statement reveals, Zionism itself encouraged and exploited self-hatred in the Diaspora. It started from the assumption that anti-Semitism was inevitable and even in a sense justified so long as Jews were outside the land of Israel.

It is true that only an extreme lunatic fringe of Zionism went so far as to offer to join the war on Germany’s side in 1941, in the hope of establishing “the historical Jewish state on a national and totalitarian basis, and bound by a treaty with the German Reich.” Unfortunately this was the group which the present Prime Minister of Israel chose to join.

The very uncomfortable truth is that the harsh characterizations of Diaspora Jewry found in the pages of Mein Kampf were not all that different from what was voiced by Zionism’s founding fathers and its subsequent leaders, so the cooperation of those two ideological movements was not really so totally surprising.

However, uncomfortable truths do remain uncomfortable. Mortimer had spent nineteen years at the Times, the last dozen of them as the foreign specialist and leader-writer on Middle Eastern affairs. But the year after he wrote that article including those controversial quotations, his career at that newspaper ended, leading to an unusual gap in his employment history, and that development may or may not be purely coincidental.

Also quite ironic was the role of Adolf Eichmann, whose name today probably ranks as one of the most famous half-dozen Nazis in history, due to his postwar 1960 kidnapping by Israeli agents, followed by his public show-trial and execution as a war-criminal. As it happens, Eichmann had been a central Nazi figure in the Zionist alliance, even studying Hebrew and apparently becoming something of a philo-Semite during the years of his close collaboration with top Zionist leaders.

Brenner is a captive of his ideology and his beliefs, accepting without question the historical narrative with which he was raised. He seems to find nothing so strange about Eichmann being a philo-Semitic partner of the Jewish Zionists during the late 1930s and then suddenly being transformed into a mass-murderer of the European Jews in the early 1940s, willingly committing the monstrous crimes for which the Israelis later justly put him to death.

This is certainly possible, but I really wonder. A more cynical observer might find it a very odd coincidence that the first prominent Nazi the Israelis made such an effort to track down and kill had been their closest former political ally and collaborator. After Germany’s defeat, Eichmann had fled to Argentina and lived there quietly for a number of years until his name resurfaced in a celebrated mid-1950s controversy surrounding one of his leading Zionist partners, then living in Israel as a respected government official, who was denounced as a Nazi collaborator, eventually ruled innocent after a celebrated trial, but later assassinated by former members of Shamir’s faction.

Following that controversy in Israel, Eichmann supposedly gave a long personal interview to a Dutch Nazi journalist, and although it wasn’t published at the time, perhaps word of its existence may have gotten into circulation. The new state of Israel was just a few years old at that time, and very politically and economically fragile, desperately dependent upon the goodwill and support of America and Jewish donors worldwide. Their remarkable former Nazi alliance was a deeply-suppressed secret, whose public release might have had absolutely disastrous consequences.

According to the version of the interview later published as a two-part story in Life Magazine, Eichmann’s statements seemingly did not touch on the deadly topic of the 1930s Nazi-Zionist partnership. But surely Israeli leaders must have been terrified that they might not be so lucky the next time, so we may speculate that Eichmann’s elimination suddenly became a top national priority, and he was tracked down and captured in 1960. Presumably, harsh means were employed to persuade him not to reveal any of these dangerous pre-war secrets at his Jerusalem trial, and one might wonder if the reason he was famously kept in an enclosed glass booth was to ensure that the sound could quickly be cut off if he started to stray from the agreed upon script. All of this analysis is totally speculative, but Eichmann’s role as a central figure in the 1930s Nazi-Zionist partnership is undeniable historical fact.

Just as we might imagine, America’s overwhelmingly pro-Israel publishing industry was hardly eager to serve as a public conduit for Brenner’s shocking revelations of a close Nazi-Zionist economic partnership, and he mentions that his book agent uniformly received rejections from each firm he approached, based on a wide variety of different excuses. However, he finally managed to locate an extremely obscure publisher in Britain willing to take on the project, and his book was released in 1983, initially receiving no reviews other than a couple of harsh and perfunctory denunciations, though Soviet Izvestia took some interest in his findings until they discovered that he was a hated Trotskyite.

His big break came when Shamir suddenly became Israel’s Prime Minister, and he brought his evidence of former Nazi ties to the English-language Palestinian press, which put it into general circulation. Various British Marxists, including the notorious “Red Ken” Livingstone of London, organized a speaking tour for him, and when a group of right-wing Zionist militants attacked one of the events and inflicted injuries, the story of the brawl caught the attention of the mainstream newspapers. Soon afterward the discussion of Brenner’s astonishing discoveries appeared in the Times of London and entered the international media. Presumably, the New York Times article that had originally caught my eye ran sometime during this period.

Public relations professionals are quite skilled at minimizing the impact of damaging revelations, and pro-Israel organizations have no shortage of such individuals. Just before the 1983 release of his remarkable book, Brenner suddenly discovered that a young pro-Zionist author named Edwin Black was furiously working on a similar project, apparently backed by sufficient financial resources that he was employing an army of fifty researchers to allow him to complete his project in record time.

Since the entire embarrassing subject of a Nazi-Zionist partnership had been kept away from the public eye for almost five decades, this timing surely seems more than merely coincidental. Presumably word of Brenner’s numerous unsuccessful efforts at securing a mainstream publisher during 1982 had gotten around, as had his eventual success in locating a tiny one in Britain. Having failed to prevent publication of such explosive material, pro-Israel groups quietly decided that their next best option was trying to seize control of the topic themselves, allowing disclosure of those parts of the story that could not be concealed but excluding items of greatest danger, while portraying the sordid history in the best possible light.

Black’s book, The Transfer Agreement, may have arrived a year later than Brenner’s but was clearly backed by vastly greater publicity and resources. It was released by Macmillan, a leading publisher, ran nearly twice the length of Brenner’s short book, and carried powerful endorsements by leading figures from the firmament of Jewish activism, including the Simon Weisenthal Center, the Israel Holocaust Memorial, and the American Jewish Archives. As a consequence, it received long if not necessarily favorable reviews in influential publications such as The New Republic and Commentary.

In all fairness, I should mention that in the Foreword to his book, Black claims that his research efforts had been totally discouraged by nearly everyone he approached, and as a consequence, he had been working on the project with solitary intensity for many years. This implies the near-simultaneous release of the two books was purely due to chance. But such a picture is hardly consistent with his glowing testimonials from so many prominent Jewish leaders, and personally I find Brenner’s claim that Black was assisted by fifty researchers far more convincing.

Since both Black and Brenner were describing the same basic reality and relying upon many of the same documents, in most respects the stories they tell are generally similar. But Black carefully excludes any mention of offers of Zionist military cooperation with the Nazis, let alone the repeated attempts by Shamir’s Zionist faction to officially join the Axis Powers after the war had broken out, as well as numerous other details of a particularly embarrassing nature.

Assuming Black’s book was published for the reasons I suggested, I think that the strategy of the pro-Israel groups largely succeeded, with his version of the history seeming to have quickly supplanted Brenner’s except perhaps in strongly leftist or anti-Zionist circles. Googling each combination of the title and author, Black’s book gets eight times as many hits, and his Amazon sales ranks and numbers of reviews are also larger by roughly that same factor. Most notably, neither the Wikipedia articles on “The Transfer Agreement” and “The Ha’avara Agreement” contain any mention of Brenner’s research whatsoever, even though his book was published earlier, was far broader, and only he provided the underlying documentary evidence. As a personal example of the current situation, I was quite unaware of the entire Ha’avara history until just a few years ago when I encountered some website comments mentioning Black’s book, leading me to purchase and read it. But even then, Brenner’s far more wide-ranging and explosive volume remained totally unknown to me until very recently.

Once World War II began, this Nazi-Zionist partnership quickly lapsed for obvious reasons. Germany was now at war with the British Empire, and financial transfers to British-run Palestine were no longer possible. Furthermore, the Arab Palestinians had grown quite hostile to the Jewish immigrants whom they rightfully feared might eventually displace them, and once the Germans were forced to choose between maintaining their relationship with a relatively small Zionist movement or winning the political sympathy of a vast sea of Middle Eastern Arabs and Muslims, their decision was a natural one. The Zionists faced a similar choice, and especially once wartime propaganda began so heavily blackening the German and Italian governments, their long previous partnership was not something they wanted widely known.

However, at exactly this same moment a somewhat different and equally long-forgotten connection between Jews and Nazi Germany suddenly moved to the fore.

Like most people everywhere, the average German, whether Jewish or Gentile, was probably not all that political, and although Zionism had for years been accorded a privileged place in German society, it is not entirely clear how many ordinary German Jews paid much attention to it. The tens of thousands who emigrated to Palestine during that period were probably motivated as much by economic pressures as by ideological commitment. But wartime changed matters in other ways.

This was even more true for the German government. The outbreak of a world war against a powerful coalition of the British and French empires, later augmented by both Soviet Russia and the United States, imposed the sorts of enormous pressures that could often overcome ideological scruples. A few years ago, I discovered a fascinating 2002 book by Bryan Mark Rigg, Hitler’s Jewish Soldiers, a scholarly treatment of exactly what the title implies. The quality of this controversial historical analysis is indicated by the glowing jacket-blurbs from numerous academic experts and an extremely favorable treatment by an eminent scholar in The American Historical Review.

Obviously, Nazi ideology was overwhelmingly centered upon race and considered racial purity a crucial factor in national cohesion. Individuals possessing substantial non-German ancestry were regarded with considerable suspicion, and this concern was greatly amplified if that admixture was Jewish. But in a military struggle against an opposing coalition possessing many times Germany’s population and industrial resources, such ideological factors might be overcome by practical considerations, and Rigg persuasively argues that some 150,000 half-Jews or quarter-Jews served in the armed forces of the Third Reich, a percentage probably not much different than their share of the general military-age population.

Germany’s long-integrated and assimilated Jewish population had always been disproportionately urban, affluent, and well-educated. As a consequence it is not entirely surprising that a large proportion of these part-Jewish soldiers who served Hitler were actually combat officers rather than merely rank-and-file conscripts, and they included at least 15 half-Jewish generals and admirals, and another dozen quarter-Jews holding those same high ranks. The most notable example was Field Marshal Erhard Milch, Hermann Goering’s powerful second-in-command, who played such an important operational role in creating the Luftwaffe. Milch certainly had a Jewish father, and according to some much less substantiated claims, perhaps even a Jewish mother as well, while his sister was married to an SS general.

Admittedly, the racially-elite SS itself generally had far stricter ancestry standards, with even a trace of non-Aryan parentage normally seen as disqualifying an individual from membership. But even here, the situation was sometimes complicated, since there were widespread rumors that Reinhard Heydrich, the second-ranking figure in that very powerful organization, actually had considerable Jewish ancestry. Rigg investigates that claim without coming to any clear conclusions, though he does seem to think that the circumstantial evidence involved may have been used by other high-ranking Nazi figures as a point of leverage or blackmail against Heydrich, who stood as one of the most important figures in the Third Reich.

As a further irony, most of these individuals traced their Jewish ancestry through their father rather than their mother, so although they were not Jewish according to rabbinical law, their family names often reflected their partly Semitic origins, though in many cases Nazi authorities attempted to studiously overlook this glaringly obvious situation. As an extreme example noted by an academic reviewer of the book, a half-Jew bearing the distinctly non-Aryan name of Werner Goldberg actually had his photograph prominently featured in a 1939 Nazi propaganda newspaper, with the caption describing him as the “The Ideal German Soldier.”

The author conducted more than 400 personal interviews of the surviving part-Jews and their relatives, and these painted a very mixed picture of the difficulties they had encountered under the Nazi regime, which varied enormously depending upon particular circumstances and the personalities of those in authority over them. One important source of complaint was that because of their status, part-Jews were often denied the military honors or promotions they had rightfully earned. However, under especially favorable conditions, they might also be legally reclassified as being of “German Blood,” which officially eliminated any taint on their status.

Even official policy seems to have been quite contradictory and vacillating. For example, when the civilian humiliations sometimes inflicted upon the fully Jewish parents of serving half-Jews were brought to Hitler’s attention, he regarded that situation as intolerable, declaring that either such parents must be fully protected against such indignities or all the half-Jews must be discharged, and eventually in April 1940 he issued a decree requiring the latter. However, this order was largely ignored by many commanders, or implemented through a honor-system that almost amounted to “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell,” so a considerable fraction of half-Jews remained in the military if they so wished. And then in July 1941, Hitler somewhat reversed himself, issuing a new decree that allowed “worthy” half-Jews who had been discharged to return to the military as officers, while also announcing that after the war, all quarter-Jews would be reclassified as fully “German Blood” Aryan citizens.

It has been said that after questions were raised about the Jewish ancestry of some of his subordinates, Goring once angrily responded “I will decide who is a Jew!” and that attitude seems to reasonably capture some of the complexity and subjective nature of the social situation.

Interestingly enough, many of part-Jews interviewed by Rigg recalled that prior to Hitler’s rise to power, the intermarriage of their parents had often provoked much greater hostility from the Jewish rather than the Gentile side of their families, suggesting that even in heavily-assimilated Germany, the traditional Jewish tendency toward ethnic exclusivity had still remained a powerful factor in that community.

Although the part-Jews in German military service were certainly subject to various forms of mistreatment and discrimination, perhaps we should compare this against the analogous situation in our own military in those same years with regard to America’s Japanese or black minorities. During that era, racial intermarriage was legally prohibited across a large portion of the US, so the mixed-race population of those groups was either almost non-existent or very different in origin. But when Japanese-Americans were allowed to leave their wartime concentration camps and enlist in the military, they were entirely restricted to segregated all-Japanese units, but with the officers generally being white. Meanwhile, blacks were almost entirely barred from combat service, though they sometimes served in strictly-segregated support roles. The notion that an American with any appreciable trace of African, Japanese, or for that matter Chinese ancestry might serve as a general or even an officer in the U.S. military and thereby exercise command authority over white American troops would have been almost unthinkable. The contrast with the practice in Hitler’s own military is quite different than what Americans might naively assume.

This paradox is not nearly as surprising as one might assume. The non-economic divisions in European societies had almost always been along lines of religion, language, and culture rather than racial ancestry, and the social tradition of more than a millennium could not easily be swept away by merely a half-dozen years of National Socialist ideology. During all those earlier centuries, a sincerely-baptized Jew, whether in Germany or elsewhere, was usually considered just as good a Christian as any other. For example, Tomas de Torquemada, the most fearsome figure of the dreaded Spanish Inquisition, actually came from a family of Jewish converts.

Even wider racial differences were hardly considered of crucial importance. Some of the greatest heroes of particular national cultures, such as Russia’s Alexander Pushkin and France’s Alexandre Dumas, had been individuals with significant black African ancestry, and this was certainly not considered any sort of disqualifying characteristic.

By contrast, American society from its inception had always been sharply divided by race, with other differences generally constituting far smaller impediments to intermarriage and amalgamation. I’ve seen widespread claims that when the Third Reich devised its 1935 Nuremberg Laws restricting marriage and other social arrangements between Aryans, non-Aryans, and part-Aryans, its experts drew upon some of America’s long legal experience in similar matters, and this seems quite plausible. Under that new Nazi statute, pre-existing mixed-marriages received some legal protection, but henceforth Jews and half-Jews could only marry each other, while quarter-Jews could only marry regular Aryans. The obvious intent was to absorb that latter group into mainstream German society, while isolating the more heavily-Jewish population.

Ironically enough, Israel today is one of very few countries with a similar sort of strictly racially-based criteria for citizenship status and other privileges, with the Jewish-only immigration policy now often determined by DNA testing, and marriages between Jews and non-Jews legally prohibited. A few years ago, the world media also carried the remarkable story of a Palestinian Arab sentenced to prison for rape because he had consensual sexual relations with a Jewish woman by passing himself off as a fellow Jew.

Since Orthodox Judaism is strictly matrilineal and controls Israeli law, even Jews of other branches can experience unexpected difficulties due to conflicts between personal ethnic identity and official legal status. The vast majority of the wealthier and more influential Jewish families worldwide do not follow Orthodox religious traditions, and over the generations, they have often taken Gentile wives. However, even if the latter had converted to Judaism, their conversions are considered invalid by the Orthodox Rabbinate, and none of their resulting descendants are considered Jewish. So if some members of these families later develop a deep commitment to their Jewish heritage and immigrate to Israel, they are sometimes outraged to discover that they are officially classified as “goyim” under Orthodox law and legally prohibited from marrying Jews. These major political controversies periodically erupt and sometimes reach the international media.

Now it seems to me that any American official who proposed racial DNA tests to decide upon the admission or exclusion of prospective immigrants would have a very difficult time remaining in office, with the Jewish-activists of organizations like the ADL probably leading the attack. And the same would surely be true for any prosecutor or judge who sent non-whites to prison for the crime of “passing” as whites and thereby managing to seduce women from that latter group. A similar fate would befall advocates of such policies in Britain, France, or most other Western nations, with the local ADL-type organization certainly playing an important role. Yet in Israel, such existing laws merely occasion a little temporary embarrassment when they are covered in the international media, and then invariably remain in place after the commotion has died down and been forgotten. These sorts of issues are considered of little more importance than were the past wartime Nazi ties of the Israeli prime minister throughout most of the 1980s.

But perhaps the solution to this puzzling difference in public reaction lies in an old joke. A leftist wit once claimed that the reason America has never had a military coup is that it is the only country in the world that lacks an American embassy to organize such activities. And unlike the U.S., Britain, France, and many other predominately-white countries, Israel has no domestic Jewish-activist organization filling the powerful role of the ADL.

Over the last few years, many outside observers have noted a seemingly very odd political situation in Ukraine. That unfortunate country possesses powerful militant groups, whose public symbols, stated ideology, and political ancestry all unmistakably mark them as Neo-Nazis. Yet those violent Neo-Nazi elements are all being bankrolled and controlled by a Jewish Oligarch who holds dual Israeli citizenship. Furthermore, that peculiar alliance had been mid-wifed and blessed by some of America’s leading Jewish Neocon figures, such as Victoria Nuland, who have successfully used their media influence to keep such explosive facts away from the American public.

At first glance, a close relationship between Jewish Israelis and European Neo-Nazis seems as grotesque and bizarre a misalliance as one could imagine, but after recently reading Brenner’s fascinating book, my perspective quickly shifted. Indeed, the main difference between then and now is that during the 1930s, Zionist factions represented a very insignificant junior partner to a powerful Third Reich, while these days it is the Nazis who occupy the role of eager suppliants to the formidable power of International Zionism, which now so heavily dominates the American political system and through it, much of the world.

August 7, 2018 Posted by | Book Review, Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Timeless or most popular | , , , , | 1 Comment