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John Bolton Wins “Defender of Israel” Award From Zionist Lobby Group That Helped Appoint Him

Pictured left to right: Joseph Frager, Alan Dershowitz, and John Bolton at the 2018 Zionist Organization of America awards. Photo | ZOA
By Whitney Webb | MintPress News | November 12, 2018

The ZOA, Bolton’s enthusiastic sponsor, led the campaign to remove former National Security Adviser H.R. McMaster from his post after railing against McMaster’s “anti-Israel” positions, most notably his support for the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), better known as the Iran nuclear deal.

The Zionist Organization of America (ZOA) recently awarded U.S. National Security Adviser John Bolton the “Defender of Israel Award” during its annual awards dinner, which took place in New York on Sunday night.

Other awardees included U.S. Ambassador to Germany Richard Grenell as well as Fox News television host Mark Levin. Both Grenell and Levin are close to Bolton, with the former having served as Bolton’s spokesman and the latter having worked closely with Bolton at the Department of Justice in the Reagan administration.

Though Bolton has received several awards from the Israel lobby in the past, due to his fervent promotion of Zionism and Israeli government policy, this more recent award is notable, as the ZOA is largely responsible for Bolton’s appointment as National Security Adviser within the Trump administration.

Indeed, beginning in August 2017, the ZOA – under the leadership of its president, Morton Klein – led the campaign to remove former National Security Adviser H.R. McMaster from his post after railing against McMaster’s “anti-Israel” positions, most notably his support for the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), better known as the Iran nuclear deal.

However, McMaster had also earned the ire of American Zionists for allegedly referring to Israel as an “occupying power” and acknowledging the existence of Palestine — as Zionists at ZOA and like-minded organizations support a revisionist history of the creation of the Israeli state that asserts that Palestine as a state never existed prior to Israel’s establishment in 1948.

Leaked emails reported on by MintPress earlier this year revealed that ZOA’s campaign to remove McMaster soon won the support of Trump’s top political donor, Zionist billionaire Sheldon Adelson. It was later revealed that Adelson had been instrumental in placing Bolton in the position McMaster vacated, as Bolton had long been a confidant of the politically influential casino magnate and Adelson had previously lobbied Trump – then president-elect – to include Bolton in his cabinet.

Bolton has not disappointed his sponsors

Since his appointment in April, Bolton has promoted and helped bring to fruition policies long supported by Adelson and the ZOA – which Adelson helps fund – as well as related groups. Under Bolton’s influence, President Trump unilaterally withdrew the U.S. from the JCPOA and imposed harsh sanctions against Iran, which disproportionately affect Iranian civilians. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo recently stated that Iranian leaders would need to fall in line if “they want their people to eat,” underscoring the fact that the Iranian people are by and large the target of the U.S. sanctions targeting Iran.

In addition, Bolton has also used his role as National Security Adviser to advocate for other troubling policies in the Middle East to the benefit of Israel, such as the continuation and expansion of the U.S.’ occupation of around 30 percent of Syrian territory.

Bolton announced in July that the U.S. would maintain its military presence in Syria until the “Iranian menace was wiped off the map.” Bolton’s announcement became administration policy just two months later in September. However, just days before Bolton took over for McMaster, Trump had announced that he wanted to remove U.S. troops from Syria “very quickly.”

Ultimately, Bolton’s recent award from the Adelson-backed ZOA for “defending Israel” is the result of events that ZOA itself helped made possible. Now that Bolton – who they helped install into power – has helped bring about the very policies they had hoped he would manifest, ZOA has granted him a “prestigious” award. Perhaps it is only fitting that he receive such thanks for the service to Zionism he was installed to provide. Indeed, it is a cause and ideology that Bolton has repeatedly supported – often at the expense of U.S. government interests and even U.S. national security.

Whitney Webb is a staff writer for MintPress News and a contributor to Ben Swann’s Truth in Media. Her work has appeared on Global Research, the Ron Paul Institute and 21st Century Wire, among others. She has also made radio and TV appearances on RT and Sputnik. She currently lives with her family in southern Chile.

See also:

Bolton’s Past Advocacy for Israel at US Expense Heralds Dangerous New Era in Geopolitics

Copyright © Whitney Webb, MintPress News, 2018

November 13, 2018 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Timeless or most popular, Wars for Israel | , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Israel Wins 2018 Election

No matter who is elected Israel comes first

By Philip Giraldi • Unz Review • November 13, 2018

Judging from the mainstream media, Israel was not a major issue in the midterm election but it sure did come up a lot when candidates for office were wooing Jewish or Evangelical voters. To cite only one example, Florida Congressman Ron DeSantis criticized his opponent Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum during their gubernatorial race for receiving support from the Dream Defenders, a group favoring Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) against Israel, and giving a speech welcoming members of the Council on American-Islamic Relations to his city. DeSantis claimed in a video clip that “I can find anti-Semites around him, but it’s almost like ‘we don’t want to discuss that.’”

DeSantis, who sponsored the 2013 Palestinian Accountability Act which called for the withholding of U.S. aid to the Palestinian Authority until it recognizes Israel as a Jewish state, charged that Gillum would not be a “friend” of Israel. In 2017, he co-founded the Congressional Israel Victory Caucus, saying “Israel is our strongest ally in the Middle East, as we share common national interests and possess similar national values. Israel is not the problem in the Middle East; it is the solution to many of the problems that bedevil the region. American policy must ensure that Israel emerges victorious against those who deny or threaten her existence.” Earlier this year, DeSantis drafted a proposal calling on the U.S. to recognize Syria’s Golan Heights as an ‘integral part’ of the State of Israel.

DeSantis boasted about his presence in Jerusalem when the U.S. Embassy was moved to that city in May and has promised as governor to visit Israel’s illegal settlements on the West Bank, which he refers to by the preferred Israeli usage as “Judea and Samaria.” He threatens critics that “If you boycott Israel, the state of Florida will boycott you.”

One might note at a minimum that for Ron DeSantis and ambitious slimeballs like him it is all about Israel due to their own political self-interest, with nothing actually in the mix for either Florida or the United States. The uninformed public buys into the narrative because it doesn’t know any better thanks to the media’s heavy slant in favor of Israel, allowing uncritical support for the Jewish state to continue under the radar unchallenged. DeSantis, a former U.S. Navy lawyer, has demonstrated that he reveres Israel even more than his former comrades in arms. In his congressional district there are a number of survivors of the U.S.S. Liberty, which was attacked in international waters by Israel on June 8, 1967, killing 34 crewmen and injuring 171 more. They report that DeSantis has been completely unsympathetic to their requests that a commission of inquiry finally be convened to determine what actually happened on that day.

In fact, Americans have never had the option of voting on the “special relationship” that Israel enjoys with the United States as no Congressman would dare run against it lest they be smeared in the media and find themselves running against an extraordinarily well funded opponent benefiting from large donations coming from out of state sources. The list of prominent politicians “taken down” by Israel is lengthy, and includes Cynthia McKinney, Adlai Stevenson III, Paul Findley, Chuck Percy, William Fulbright, Roger Jepsen, and Pete McCloskey.

It is particularly ironic that as the midterm campaigns were drawing to a close there appeared some serious investigative journalism that demonstrates precisely how Israel and Jewish groups corrupt the political process in America to provide virtually unlimited support for anything and everything that the despicable Benjamin Netanyahu and his gang of war criminals seek to do. How the process has succeeded is best illustrated by the current Israeli government’s policy of “mowing the grass” in Gaza where it is using army snipers to kill unarmed Palestinian protesters. Washington not only does not protest against the in-your-face war crime, it aids and abets it with U.S. Ambassador David Friedman justifying the military response as measured and appropriate.

Another area where Washington chooses to look the other way is regarding Israel’s nuclear arsenal, believed to consist of two hundred warheads. Under U.S. law, any country that has an undeclared nuclear weapons arsenal cannot obtain American-made weapons and cannot received aid of any type. Congress and the White House pretend that the Israeli nuclear arsenal does not exist, in spite of the fact that the Israelis themselves have more than once implicitly acknowledged it and instead of cutting aid to Israel have instead increased it. It is currently $3.8 billion per year guaranteed for the next ten years, with extra money also available if needed. No other country benefits from such largess and gives in return so little.

To be sure, the groundbreaking book The Israel Lobby and U.S. Foreign Policy by professors Stephen Walt and John Mearsheimer, which appeared in 2007, pulled no punches in describing how the Israel Lobby operates in the United States. It also made clear that the relationship with Israel serves no United States national interest whatsoever and exists solely because of the corruption of the political system and the media by principally Jewish individuals and groups that are dedicated to that task.

While acknowledging the great debt to Walt and Mearsheimer, it is one thing to read about something in a book and quite another thing to see it live, which is what the new evidence of Israeli interference consists of. Several years ago, the Qatari news service al-Jazeera commissioned two investigations. The first was on the activities of the Israeli Lobby in Britain and the second was on the lobby in the United States. The material consisted largely of meetings with members of Israel’s active lobby that were secretly filmed by journalists who were pretending to be supporters and who eventually managed to penetrate some of the organizations that were most active in promoting Israel’s interests.

The British expose, in two parts, aired in January, and was based on discussions and interviews that took place between June and November 2017. It demonstrated how the Israeli Embassy in London connived with government officials to “take down” parliamentarians and government ministers who were considered to be critical of the Jewish State. It also revealed how the Israeli Embassy was secretly subsidizing and advising private groups promoting Israeli interests, including associations of Members of Parliament (MPs).

The secret recording revealed how an Israeli Embassy diplomat/spy named Shai Masot connived with a senior civil servant to get rid of Foreign Office Minister Sir Alan Duncan, regarded as a supporter of an independent Palestinian state. To Masot’s additional query “Can I give you some MPs that I would suggest you would take down?” the civil servant suggested “… if you look hard enough, I’m sure there is something that they’re trying to hide… a little scandal maybe.” Another alleged pro-Arab member of Parliament Crispin Blunt was also identified and confirmed to be on a “hit list.”

It was also learned that Masot had been secretly subsidizing and advising two ostensibly independent groups, the parliamentary Conservative Friends of Israel (CFI) and the Labour Friends of Israel (LFI). Masot did, however, express concern that Israel’s control over incoming parliamentarians was not quite what it used to be: “For years, every MP that joined the parliament joined the LFI. They’re not doing that any more in the Labour Party. CFI, they’re doing it automatically. All the 14 new MPs who got elected in the last elections did it automatically.”

The documentary was initially a sensation in Britain but then, predictably, it went away as Israel’s loyal host of media scriveners took charge. Masot was recalled to Israel and Prime Minister Teresa May, as good a friend to Jewish money and power as one is likely to find, decided to do nothing. Her characteristically toothless reaction to the suggestion that her government officials might be removed by the clandestine activity of a foreign country was: “The Israeli ambassador has apologized… the U.K. has a strong relationship with Israel and we consider the matter closed.”

The four-part series by al-Jazeera on the Lobby in the U.S. was meanwhile temporarily spiked because the Qatari government was seeking to obtain the mediation of prominent American Jews to pressure the White House to help resolve its outstanding conflict with Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates.

The documentary has remained in limbo but in the past two weeks it has surfaced and is now available. Its undercover investigative journalist, a British Jew named Tony Kleinfeld, quickly charmed his way into the inner circle of Israel’s supporters where he discovered a network of organizations that act as fronts for the Israeli government. Their activities include spying on supporters of Palestinian rights and disrupting demonstrations, with a particular focus on the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement (BDS), which Israel has particularly targeted. They also resorted to tactics like smearing critics by generating false accusations of sexual and personal misconduct, all of which was coordinated by Israel’s Ministry of Strategic Affairs. The ministry’s director general is Sima Vaknin-Gil, a former senior officer with Israel’s military intelligence, and is staff consists mostly of former spies drawn from Israel’s various security agencies.

Later, Kleinfeld became involved with The Israel Project, which is a U.S. based Israeli government backed propaganda organ that claims to be “a non-partisan American educational organization dedicated to informing the media and public conversation about Israel and the Middle East.”

In a recorded conversation, Project employee Jordan Schachtel, explained the objectives and extent of a secret Facebook operation. “We’re putting together a lot of pro-Israel media through various social media channels that aren’t The Israel Project’s channels. So we have a lot of side projects that we are trying to influence the public debate with. That’s why it’s a secretive thing, because we don’t want people to know that these side projects are associated with The Israel Project.”

In another episode, the Israel on Campus Coalition’s Jacob Baime, who claimed to have a $2 million budget, described coordinating with the Israeli government, with an approach “modeled on General Stanley McChrystal’s counterinsurgency strategy in Iraq… copied a lot from that strategy that has been working really well for us, actually” using “offensive information operations.” Baime described putting “up some anonymous website” along with targeted Facebook ads so that critics “either shut down or they spend time responding to it and investigating it, which is time they can’t spend attacking Israel. It’s psychological warfare, it drives them crazy.”

Kleinfeld also met with other groups. Foundation for Defense of Democracies was revealed as yet another agent of Israel’s Ministry of Strategic Affairs, its directors meeting regularly with Israeli Embassy staff in Washington. In spite of that the Treasury Department has not compelled it to register under the Foreign Agents Registration Act of 1938 (FARA). It is also registered with the IRS as a tax exempt 501(c)3 “charity.” Indeed, no Jewish organization active on behalf of Israel has ever had to register under FARA and most are classified as tax exempt charities or educational foundations. Interestingly, however, the FDD’s Jonathan Schanzer lamented in his recorded conversation with Kleinfeld that “anti-Semitism as a smear is not what is used to be.”

In another bizarre episode, Kleinfeld visited the neocon dominated Hoover Institute in California where he participated in a demonstration together with a group of bored young conservative think tankers compelled by their professors to protest against a Students for Justice in Palestine conference. The think tank fellows admit that they were “astroturfing” – rent-a-crowd activism to make a small demonstration appear much larger.

Another segment includes Israeli Lobby financier Adam Milstein, who is reported to be the principal funder of Canary Mission, which has targeted some 1,900 students and academics in its profiles since 2015, smearing them as “racist,” “anti-American” and “anti-Semitic.” Jacob Baime, executive director of the Israel on Campus Coalition, boasts in the film that “Canary Mission is highly, highly effective to the extent that we monitor the Students for Justice in Palestine and their allies.”

In his recording, Milstein also talks about the need to “investigate” and “expose” critics of Israel, who Milstein claims are anti-Semites, as well as “anti-Christian” and “anti-freedom” activists who “terrorize us.” His foundation also funds numerous anti-Palestinian organizations, including the Israel on Campus Coalition, StandWithUs, CAMERA, the AMCHA Initiative and the FDD. Milstein also funds and is chairman of the board of the Israeli-American Council. An Israeli-born California based real estate developer, Milstein reportedly served time in federal prison after a 2009 conviction for tax evasion.

An Israeli spy at the University of California at Davis, Julia Reifkind also described to Kleinfeld how the system worked at the campus level. She used multiple fake Facebook accounts to monitor the activities of Students for Justice in Palestine. “I follow all the SJP accounts. I have some fake names. My name is Jay Bernard or something. It just sounds like an old white guy, which was the plan. I join all these groups.” The information she obtained was then passed on to her contact in the Embassy for forwarding on to Israel to be entered into their data base of enemies.

So, Israel was engaging in interfering in legitimate political activity and also generating fake news on the social media in both 2016 and 2018, the same accusation that has been leveled against Moscow, but Special Counsel Robert Mueller seems curiously uninterested. And beyond the al-Jazeera revelations, there is also the evidence that it was Israel that sought favors from the incoming Trump Administration in 2016, not Russia. So who was actually corrupting whom?

And then there are the more overt Israeli front groups like the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) with its $100 million annual budget and 200 employees, as well as the other special arrangements to pander to Israel and the powerful American Jews who have made it their mission to use the U.S. government as a mechanism to protect and nurture Israel. Last week in Los Angeles $60 million was raised by Hollywood’s finest for the Israel Defense Forces (IDF), “Their Job is to Look After Israel. Ours is to Look After Them,” the website proclaims. Last month, an additional $32 million was raised for the IDF in New York City. Donations are tax exempt, to support the armed forces of a country that is currently engaged in war crimes and that has a secret nuclear arsenal.

So, Israel was technically speaking not running in the 2018 election, but it was very much in the race. Jewish Democrats are already boasting how the presence of a couple of Israel critics in the House, who will be “reeducated” on the Middle East, will make no difference, that the party will be solid for the Jewish state with more Jewish congressmen than ever before. Indeed, the “special relationship” bond will be stronger than ever. Five committee chairmanships in the House of Representatives will be in the hands of passionate Israel firsters, including Adam Schiff at the Intelligence Committee and Eliot Engel at Foreign Affairs. On the Republican side, the House is already 100% in Israel’s pocket. And as part of the White House team we have John Bolton and Mike Pompeo. Donald Trump’s Ambassador to Israel David Friedman expressed the dual loyalty phenomenon best in a recent speech. The United States is his “country of citizenship” but Israel is the country he “loves so much.”

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.

November 13, 2018 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Timeless or most popular, Wars for Israel | , , , , | Leave a comment

S-300 in Syria – a Preliminary Assessment

The Saker • Unz Review • November 9, 2018

We now know a little more about which version of the S-300 family the Russians have delivered to the Syrians: the Russians have converted a number of S-300PM and S-300P2 systems to the export version S-300PMU-2 “Favorit” which, by the way, is also the version Russia delivered to the Iranians and to the Chinese. This system uses the 48N6E2 missile and has an official range of 195km. I will skip the rest of the technical details and just say that this is a recent modification with excellent capabilities, so all the rumors about Russia delivering some antiquated version of the S-300 are now proven false (as usual). In fact, this is not the first time that the Russians have delivered an “Israeli-restraining” air defense system: in 1983 the USSR delivered a number of S-200VE “Vega-E” (SA-5b) air defense systems to Syria which significantly limited Israeli operations over and even around (AWACS) Syria.

Combined with the EW systems also delivered by Russia, these air defense systems clearly are having an impact on US and Israeli operations. And while the Americans are admitting that this is a problem for them, the Israelis, as usual, have both complained about this delivery and boasted that they did not care at all. adding that they would continue to bomb Syria whenever they feel the need. The Israelis have even declared that they would be willing to kill Russian crews if their aircraft are shot at. Except, of course, that so far the Israelis have stayed out of the Syrian skies (keep in mind that according to Israeli sources in 2017 the IDF attacked Syria over 200 times, roughly one attack every 2nd day!).

This time around, not only are the Israelis facing a much more competent air defense system, this system is also highly mobile and therefore much harder to locate, which will greatly complicate future attacks. Furthermore, since one S-300PMU2 battalion can track 300 targets (and engage 36 with 72 missiles simultaneously) at a very long range, the Syrians will now improve their early warning capabilities tremendously, which will make it much harder for the Israelis to successfully conduct surprise attacks against Syria.

Sooner or later, however, we can be pretty confident that both the Israelis and the US will have to try to strike Syria again, if only for PR purposes. In fact, this should not be too difficult for them, here is why:

First, and contrary to what is often claimed, there are not enough S-300/S-400′s in Syria to indeed “lock” all of the Syrian airspace. Yes, the Russians did create a de-facto no-fly zone over Syria, but not one which could withstand a large and determined attack. What the combined Russian and Syrian forces have done so far is to deny some specific segments of the airspace above and around Syria to the AngloZionist aggressors. This means that they can protect some specific, high-value targets. However, as soon as the US/Israelis get a feel for what has been deployed and where, and how this entire integrated air defense network works, they will be able to plan strikes which, while not terribly effective, will be presented by the propaganda machine as a major success for the AngloZionists.

Second, air defense operations are always a game of numbers. Even if you assume that each of the air defense missile has a probability of a kill of 1 (meaning that every air defense missile fired will destroy one incoming missile), you still cannot shoot down more missiles than what your own stores allow you to fire. The US/NATO/CENTCOM can, if needed, engage many more missiles in a saturation attack than the Russians have available for defense. This is unlikely to change in the foreseeable future.

Third, the US/NATO/CENTCOM/IDF all have advanced EW capabilities which will allow them to try to disrupt the Russian fire and reconnaissance capabilities, especially if low RCS aircraft (such as the F-22, F-35, B-1B, etc.) are used in the attacks. Low-RCS aircraft (and missiles) don’t have to operate alone and, in reality, they are often engaged with the support of a determined EW effort.

Finally, the Empire also has long-range weapons which could be used to strike Syria (such as the AGM-158 JASSM low-RCS standoff air-launched cruise missile), especially during a combined electronic warfare and standoff antiradiation missile attack.

So, all the AngloZionists really need to do is to be very careful in their choice of paths of approach and choice of targets, use low-RCS aircraft and missiles under the cover of a robust EW engagement and then use a large enough number of missiles to give the appearance that the Empire has defeated the Russian and Syrian air defenses.

Judging by their past attacks against Syria, the US and the Israelis are far more concerned with the need to appear very powerful, effective and quasi-invulnerable than by actually achieving some meaningful military objective. Of course, this need to appear invulnerable also means that the AngloZionists really cannot afford to have one of their aircraft shot down, hence their current reluctance to test out the Syrian air defense capabilities.

Sooner or later, however, the Israelis will have to try to “defeat the S-300″ as they would put it.

The problem for the Israelis is that they don’t really have any good options. The problem is not so much a technological one as it is a political one.

Let’s assume that the Israelis conduct a successful strike against a meaningful target (if their attack is symbolic, the Russians and Syrians can just limit their reply to the usual protests and denunciations, but take no real action). What would Russia do? Well, the Russians (Shoigu specifically) have already indicated that, if needed, they would increase the number of S-300 batteries (and required support systems) delivered to Syria. Thus, the main effect of a successful attack on Syria will be to make subsequent attacks even harder to plan and execute. Would that really be a desirable outcome for the Israelis? I don’t think so.

If each successful Israeli strike makes each subsequent strike even harder while increasing the danger for Israeli aircraft, what would be the point of such attacks? Are there any truly high-value targets in Syria whose destruction by the IDF would justify triggering a further degradation of the situation in Syria? Conversely, if you were Syrian (or Iranian), would you not want the Israelis to strike Syria (or even S-300 batteries) hard enough to force the Russians to deliver even more air defense systems (not necessarily S-300s by the way!)?

Just as with the case of Hezbollah in Lebanon (which the Israeli invasion of Lebanon in 1982 helped create), and the coming to power of Hassan Nasrallah at the head of Hezbollah (which the murder of Abbas al Moussawi by the Israelis in 1992 propelled to the position of Secretary General of the organization), the Israelis are re-discovering again and again the truism: while simple, brute force violence does appear to be effective in the short term, in the mid to long-term it always fails unless backed by meaningful political measures. The big axiomatic truth which the Israelis still are stubbornly refusing to recognize is that all true security is always collective (something the Russians have been repeating for years now). In the case of Syria, Israel would be much, much better off negotiating some kind of deal with the Russians, the Iranians and the Syrians (even an unofficial one!) than trying to prevail by blowing up targets in Syria.

I would even argue that with the Trump presidency now dramatically increasing the rate of collapse of the AngloZionist Empire the Israelis need to start making plans to involve other actors in their regional policy. The truth is that the US is not in a position anymore to remain a key player in Middle-Eastern politics and that decades of abject submission to the Likudnik agenda have irreparably damaged the US credibility and influence in the Middle-East (and the rest of the world).

I would compare the delivery of S-300PMU-2 “Favorit” batteries to Syria to a chess opening or an irreversible move like castling: it does not, by itself, decide the outcome of the game, but it does create a baseline environment in which both players will need to operate. For the Russians, the next step is quite obvious: to continue to deliver all types of air defense systems to the Syrians (especially more Pantsirs) with the goal of eventually being able to protect the entire Syrian airspace from any attacks by the US or Israel. The main elements of a multi-layered air defense network are already deployed, Syria now only needs larger numbers. I very much hope that Russia will provide them.

November 9, 2018 Posted by | Militarism, Wars for Israel | , , , , , | Leave a comment

India should stay the course on Iran oil

By M. K. BHADRAKUMAR | Indian Punchline | November 5, 2018

The new kids on the block are unaware that not a year had passed since the Islamic Revolution in Iran 40 years ago when US sanctions against that country wasn’t a fact of life. Iran has weathered multiple rounds of sanctions before.

As a BBC commentary put it, “Iranians will be forced into finding creative ways to sell oil, relying on their years of experience of life under previous sanctions. And to fill the gap left by lost European investment, Iran will be looking east to forge new links with Russia and China.”

This is also the signal one gets from the Iranian reaction to the Trump administration’s re-imposition of sanctions. At the most authoritative level, Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei has been plainly dismissive. Some excerpts from his remarks on Saturday:

“The enemy made every attempts against us, with a variety of actions; the US engaged in military, economic, and media warfare against us. Via all these actions, the US aspired, in vain, to regain its previous domineering status over Iran — that it enjoyed during the Pahlavi Regime.”

“Today, an overview of the situation of the US shows that the US’s power is declining. The US is today much weaker than it was forty years ago… US’s soft power has degraded… US’s hard power — that is, its economic and military power — is also declining… It suffers from more than $15 trillion dollars public debt and $800 billion budget deficit… The US is declining. Everyone should know this.”

Clearly, for Tehran, talks with the US will be simply out of the question.

On the other hand, there are no knee-jerk reactions, either – such as that Iran is going to dump the 2015 nuclear deal. As the Iranian ambassador to the UK Hamid Baeidinejad (who was a leading member of Iran’s negotiating team with the US during 2013-2015) put it, “The aspiration that we have with the European Union, Britain, France and Germany, China and Russia, is that we keep the Iran Nuclear Deal alive and give time to the U.S. to rethink and revise its position.”

Baeidinejad added, Tehran will not accept any idea of changing or renegotiating the nuclear deal, because if one word is changed other aspects of the deal will either be changed or compromised. “We have a total loss of confidence” in negotiating with the US, but “we are trying very hard with European countries, with China and Russia, to find mechanisms that this deal could (still) be effectively implemented.”

The ambassador said, “There will be pressure against some countries, particularly European countries, and economic and trade institutions from attempting to enter into working with Iran, there will probably be some risks.” However, there is “total determination” by European countries and other world partners to find “practical solutions” so that the deal will be kept alive.

These remarks sum up the Iranian position. Tehran estimates that it has much elbowroom left to force a rethink on the Trump administration.

Curiously, this is also the assessment of some Israeli experts. A commentary in the Jerusalem Post gives the expert opinion that while the US’ oil sanctions will no doubt hurt Iran, “Tehran maintains key support from Asia,” which means that the sanctions are “insufficient to compel Iran to accept a new tougher nuclear deal.” Equally, support for Iran from China, Russia, India and South Korea would be too strong too [sic] sufficiently isolate the Islamic Republic’s economy… the fundamental dynamics protecting Iran from a total collapse if anything are even more solid (today).”

Interestingly, Tehran is not perturbed about the US threat to cut Iran off from the SWIFT. The fact of the matter is that Iran has an alternative to SWIFT – Russia’s SPFS. By the way, SPFS’ clients already include three of the top importers of Iranian oil – China, India and Turkey. (India probably used it recently to make payments for its purchase of the Russian S-400 ABM system!)

Suffice to say, Washington not only needs to accept that SPFS is a viable workaround for countries to import Iranian oil, but also a factor in the long-term implications of the emergence of such a new and parallel monetary system.

Therefore, the Trump administration’s decision to give the ‘waiver’ on import of Iranian oil is understandable. It is only prudent not to jeopardize the US’ relations with countries such as India or Turkey on account of the Iran oil sanctions when these countries are in any case going to find ingenious ways to import Iranian oil.

Then, there are other factors at work. One, as mentioned above, the US realizes that it lacks the ability to bring Iran’s oil exports to anywhere near zero level, as it once boasted. Two, oil sanctions against Iran will impact the world oil prices. Can Trump afford the political cost of oil prices cascading to, say, $100 bpd or more when he gears up for his re-election bid in 2020?

Third, there is great uncertainty about US-Saudi relations in the aftermath of the murder of Jamal Khashoggi. It is turning out to be a high stakes game of rogue operation by intelligence agencies for regime change in Saudi Arabia, which went horribly wrong. The searing experience seriously damages US-Saudi relations. And Saudi Arabia happens to be the only OPEC country that has the means to boost oil production to make up for shortfalls due to US’ oil sanctions against Iran. (Even Saudi surplus capacity is severely restricted.)

The bottom line is that New Delhi must stay the course, no matter what the American lobby in Delhi may say. The point is, the Trump administration is heading toward a cul-de-sac. When this realization dawns on Trump, he’ll, typically, make the course correction. As Ambassador Baeidinejad explained, Iran’s plan is to isolate the US and give it time to rethink. In this wise approach, Iran is getting strong support from the EU and Russia and China. Read the joint statement by the EU + EU-3 foreign ministers here.

November 5, 2018 Posted by | Economics, Wars for Israel | , | 1 Comment

Istanbul Summit on Syria Was a Success but Caveats Remain

By Melkulangara BHADRAKUMAR | Strategic Culture Foundation | 29.10.2018

The four-nation Turkey-Russia-Germany-France summit on Syria on October 27 in Istanbul had an impressive outcome. All participants – each with own interests – has some ‘takeaway’ from the summit, which itself is a measure of the success of the event. This is also important because the participants now have a reason to work together.

Such an outcome can be interpreted in the following ways. First and foremost, a major regional conflict impacting international security was addressed without US participation. A sign of our times?

Second, participants didn’t quarrel over President Bashar Al-Assad’s “fate”. The debate becomes pedantic today in terms of ground realities. The Syrian nation should decide on its future. That’s also been Assad’s demand.

Third, some serious thought has been given to the journey towards a Syrian settlement – ceasefire, drafting of new constitution followed by elections under UN supervision.

Four, the participants snubbed the US-Israeli plan to balkanize Syria into “spheres of influence” and have also squashed the Israeli dreams of getting international legitimacy for its illegal occupation of Golan Heights as part of any settlement.

Five, Germany and France have become amenable to the Russian demand pressing the urgency for rendering humanitarian aid to Syria and help in reconstruction. (The US made this conditional on Assad’s removal.) We’ll have to see how it pans out, but the summit also stressed the importance of the return of Syrian refugees (which is a key issue for European countries.)

Six, the participants recognized that the remaining terrorists in Syria must be destroyed – although, significantly, they also supported the Idlib ceasefire deal brokered by Turkey and Russia.

The bottom line is that it is the post-war Syrian order that is under discussion now. However, it must be understood as well that the proxy war is not ending but is rather morphing into the diplomatic war that lies ahead, which of course will be keenly fought, given the divergent interests of the foreign protagonists.

Generally speaking, Russia and Turkey are in command as of now. Their own equations are good but there are grey areas, too. The importance of close coordination between Russia and Turkey cannot but be stressed.

Iran cannot be happy that it has been excluded from the Istanbul summit. But it may prove an underestimation that Iran is in no position to assert its legitimate interests. The close consultations between Russia and Iran – not only regarding Syria – are of course the mitigating factor here.

Similarly, a “post-Khashoggi” Saudi attitude to Syria remains the “known unknown”. The US is in a position to blackmail Saudi Arabia to continue to bankroll its military presence in Syria, but the Saudis cannot have their heart in the overreach to project power abroad. Something has fundamentally changed – Saudis are not used to their prestige being dragged in the mud as in this past month and the traumatic experience cannot but have a sobering effect.

Besides, Saudis dare not cross swords with Turkey on the latter’s Syrian playpen. Above all, Saudis would not want to undermine Russian efforts to stabilize Syria, since Moscow’s goodwill and cooperation is extremely vital for Riyadh in the coming period, now that the raison d’etre of Riyadh’s “Look East” is beyond doubt.

Basically, France and Germany are lightweights in Syria. They had a limited agenda at the Istanbul summit. Russia must know fully well that in the final analysis, US involvement is crucial. It is entirely conceivable that at the forthcoming Russian-American summit in Paris on November 11, Syria will be a major topic of discussion.

The US policy in Syria is at a crossroad and will hinge greatly on the standing of President Trump in the aftermath of the November 6 mid-term elections in the US.

Clearly, this was far from a situation of three major allies of the US staging a mutiny on the NATO ship. Germany and France would have consulted Washington most certainly ahead of the Istanbul summit (which has been in the making for months.)

The big question is how the Turkish-American relations evolve. The Khashoggi affair has brought about certain US-Turkey “proximity”. Ironically, the Deep State in America and Trump are on the same page here – rediscovering the vital importance of Turkey for US regional strategies.

The spokesmen of the Deep State used to defame Turkish President Recep Erdogan for being “Islamist” and “authoritarian” and so on and probably even tried to overthrow him in the failed coup of 2016, but today, they laud him for espousing Islamic democracy as the panacea for the region.

Erdogan, in turn – or at least a part of him – had always hankered for recognition by the West when he sought Turkey’s historic leadership role in the Middle East and uniqueness to act as a bridge between the West and the region. Equally, Trump is eternally grateful to Erdogan to refrain from spilling the beans on the Khashoggi affair and for helping him finesse a major crisis for his presidency on the foreign-policy front.

Suffice to say, this “transition” in the US-Turkey tough love can profoundly affect the geopolitics of the Middle East – provided of course Washington plays its cards carefully in regard of Erdogan’s wish list on a host of pending issues, including some of great sensitivity.

Syria is somewhere at the top of Erdogan’s priorities. Howsoever unpalatable it may appear, Erdogan will expect the Americans to throw their Syrian Kurdish allies under the bus. Yesterday, the Turkish army bombarded Kurdish positions east of Euphrates.

Now, how Turkish policies play out in Syria is difficult to predict, since the variables are too many. A US-Turkey rapprochement is hard to reach. But then, Turks and Americans are also old allies and they have a way of knocking their heads together and start working together again.

October 29, 2018 Posted by | Illegal Occupation, Wars for Israel | , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

US sanctions on Hezbollah aim to punish Lebanon: Observers

Press TV – October 28, 2018

The US has imposed new sanctions on Hezbollah, but observers say Lebanon as a whole will be affected by the punitive measures.

Earlier this week, the administration of US President Donald Trump imposed a new round of sanctions on Hezbollah targeting individuals and international organizations that do business with the resistance group.

Economist Louis Hobeika said he thought “it is difficult to punish Hezbollah without punishing all of Lebanon.”

“No area fully belongs to Hezbollah. The southern suburb of Beirut is not confined to Hezbollah, so how will the sanctions apply here?” Hobeika told Arab News in remarks published Saturday.

Political activist Ali Al-Amin, the director of Janoubia news website, said the outcome of the US decision could be “disastrous” for Lebanon.

“Is the purpose of the sanctions to embarrass the Lebanese government and state?” he wondered.

In the May parliamentary elections, Hezbollah and its political allies won more than half of the seats at the legislature in a major victory for the party.

Former Lebanese lawmaker Fares Souaid told Arab News that the new sanctions are part of a series of US bans meant to “turn the party (Hezbollah) into a burden on the Lebanese after Hezbollah has come forward as a security guarantee for Lebanon.”

The US has its Arab allies in the Persian Gulf on board in cranking up pressure on the Lebanese leaders over their association with Hezbollah, and they all take their cue from Israel.

Israeli leaders have threatened that they would view the Lebanese state as part of Hezbollah in a future war with the resistance movement.

In May, the US Treasury Department imposed sanctions on the Hezbollah leadership jointly with members of the so-called Terrorist Financing and Targeting Center (TFTC), which includes Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar and the UAE.

Hezbollah was formed following the Israeli regime’s invasion of Lebanon and the ensuing occupation of its southern parts in 1980s, and currently constitutes Lebanon’s de facto military power.

Since then, the movement has helped the national army retake the occupied regions from Tel Aviv and thwart two Israeli acts of aggression in 2000 and 2006.

The movement has also been playing a significant role in the Syrian army’s fight against Takfiri terror groups, including Daesh and Nusra Front, thus preventing the spillover of the war into Lebanon.

October 28, 2018 Posted by | Economics, Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Wars for Israel | , , , , | 3 Comments

The US Is Linking Hezbollah With The Cartels To Advance The Anti-Iranian Infowar

By Andrew KORYBKO – Oriental Review – 24/10/2018

US Attorney General Jeff Sessions created an elite task force for specifically investigating Mexican drug cartel and Hezbollah activity in America.

His move comes just weeks before the upcoming midterms in early November and represents Trump following through on his campaign promise to investigate these groups, with the differentiating factor being that the US also regards Hezbollah as a “terrorist organization” despite Russia and many other countries not sharing this position. Another point is that the current administration is basically equating this Mideast-based socio-political movement with MS-13 and other infamous drug trafficking gangs, which could hint at its intentions in laying the basis for the forthcoming infowar narrative that it might supposedly represent an Iranian-backed “Hybrid War threat” to the American Heartland. The buildup to this state-backed storyline perfectly coincides with the impending re-imposition of US sanctions against Iran, too.

Furthermore, it was revealed late last year that the Obama Administration suppressed what has been referred to as “Operation Cassandra”, which was allegedly a wide-ranging investigation into Hezbollah’s activities across the entire Western Hemisphere and specifically inside the US itself. Whether the accusations from that time about the group’s involvement in organized crime are true or not, the important point is that the Trump Administration appears to believe them or at the very least wants to procure more public evidence – whether real or fabricated – of this. Successfully doing so could enable the President to “defend” his destabilizing actions against Iran with the specious excuse that Iran is also “meddling” in American affairs too and has supposedly been since even before his inauguration.

Moving beyond the rhetoric and into the realm of practical policy application, Sessions’ crusade against the cartels and Hezbollah is designed to advance the administration’s law-and-order agenda, which would be a great thing for average Americans if it does indeed end up putting dangerous criminals behind bars regardless of whoever they might be. That’s not to say that Hezbollah in and of itself should objectively be considered a criminal entity, nor that there aren’t powerful arguments in favor of its existence and the causes that it supports, but just that its members need to obey the same laws that everyone else has to follow and shouldn’t harm innocent Americans through the financial, drug, violent, and other crimes that they might be engaged in to fund their organization.

Having said that, Sessions clearly has political motives for singling out Hezbollah from the US’ many other and much more influential suspected criminal organizations and lumping it together with well-known and infamous ones such as MS-13 in the context of his newly created taskforce. One of the main reasons for doing this appears to be the government’s plan to popularize the notion that Hezbollah is equivalent to the cartels prior to using this narrative as joint “justification” for more openly meddling in Iran’s domestic affairs and taking an even stricter approach towards the group’s activities in the Mideast. These probable forthcoming policy moves perfectly align with the interests of Israel, which believes that it’s existentially threatened by both Iran and its Hezbollah partners.

This means that Sessions’ taskforce is intended to advance Israel’s interests just as much as America’s, and it’s likely that they’ll work hand-in-hand in the course of these newly announced investigations.

The post presented is the partial transcript of the CONTEXT COUNTDOWN radio program on Sputnik News, aired on Friday Oct 19, 2018.

October 24, 2018 Posted by | Deception, Timeless or most popular, Wars for Israel | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

1983 US Barracks Bombing in Beirut: Will Iran Ever Get Its Frozen Billions Back?

Sputnik – 24.10.2018

Tuesday marked the 35th anniversary of the October 23, 1983 terrorist truck bombings of buildings containing US and French forces in Beirut, Lebanon. In the attacks’ aftermath, Washington accused Tehran of involvement, froze nearly $2 billion in Iranian assets, and decided to seize and appropriate these funds in 2016.

As a result of the barracks blast, 241 US Marines and 58 French paratroopers were killed, along with 6 Lebanese civilians. A group called Islamic Jihad Organization claimed responsibility for the blast, but Israeli and US officials have claimed Iranian involvement.

In 2016, the US Supreme Court ordered Iranian assets frozen in US banks to be paid out to the families of the US servicemen killed in the blast. Iran decried the decision, calling it “theft,” and took its case to the International Court of Justice. Earlier this month, US lawyers urged the ICJ to dismiss the Iranian suit, arguing that its appeal was “legally flawed.”

Speaking to Sputnik Persian about the anniversary of the blast, and US authorities’ decision to seize and appropriate Iranian assets, Dr. Seyed Hadi Afgahi, renowned expert on Middle East affairs and former diplomat at Iran’s embassy in Lebanon, said Tehran was unlikely to get its money back.

Commenting on the US claims against Iran, Afgahi said that the Beirut bombing was not the first time that the US has baselessly accused Iran of carrying out actions directed against US interests, citizens, military and diplomatic personnel, and certainly wouldn’t be the last.

“The US is filing lawsuits against Iran, but is forming these courts themselves, and making the rulings themselves. Where else in the world can one see a situation where the investigation is carried out by the same people who file the lawsuit, and the ruling is made by the same people, as well?” the observer asked, pointed to the multiple suits filed in US courts over the years accusing Iran of involvement in various terror acts.

“Recently, for example, the International Court of Justice ruled in Iran’s favor and demanded that the US lift some of its sanctions against Iran. The response from the US was that this decision means nothing to them. This is Washington’s logic at its core – the logic of unilateral claims,” Afgahi added.

As far as the Beirut bombings case is concerned, the former diplomat suggested that whatever Tehran does in international courts, it can’t force Washington to adhere to the courts’ decisions. “The International Court of Justice in the Hague is an organ controlled by the UN, but the US simply refuses to comply with its decisions,” he lamented.

Regarding the real perpetrators standing behind the 1983 blast, Afgahi said that it’s necessary to take a broader view, accounting for US actions, and not just those of the terrorists. “The Americans were the ones who attacked the people of Lebanon, killed them, bombed them, with their ships regularly bombing Beirut’s coast. They placed a base in the city, seizing buildings, landing their forces without the permission of the Lebanese authorities,” the observer recalled. “This is the same thing that they’re doing today – invading, killing and bombing,” he argued.

Ultimately, Afgahi believes that in the present circumstances, Iran will be unlikely to achieve justice and the return of its assets, particularly after the unilateral US withdrawal from the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action nuclear deal and the introduction of new, aggressive sanctions against Tehran.

October 24, 2018 Posted by | Illegal Occupation, Timeless or most popular, Wars for Israel | , , , | 3 Comments

Christopher Bollyn: Tricked Into War

Ed Mays October 11, 2018

Investigative journalist and best selling author Chris Bollyn makes the case for why he believes the Israeli Zionist government was behind the 9/11 attack in order to trick the US into carrying out it’s agenda in the Middle East.

Recorded 9/22/18 Pirate TV is a 58 minute weekly TV show that provides the book talk and lecture content for Free Speech TV.

Pirate TV challenges the Media Blockade, bringing you independent voices, information and programming unavailable on the Corporate Sponsor-Ship. These posts are for YouTube and are usually longer than the broadcast versions.

You will notice that I don’t monetize my videos. I’m irritated by constant interruptions as I’m sure are you. If you would like to pitch in to support this work, consider a donation: http://www.edmaysproductions.net/pira…

October 19, 2018 Posted by | False Flag Terrorism, Timeless or most popular, Video, Wars for Israel | , , , , | 5 Comments

Pandering to Israel

Time to cut the tie that binds

By Philip Giraldi • Unz Review • October 16, 2018

The ability of Israel and its powerful Lobby to control many aspects of American government while also sustaining an essentially false narrative about the alleged virtues of the Jewish State is remarkable. Politicians and journalists learned long ago that it was better to cultivate Israel’s friends than it was to support actual American interests. They also discovered to speak the truth about the Jewish State often would prove to be a death sentence career-wise, witness the experiences of Cynthia McKinney, Paul Findlay, William Fulbright, Chuck Percy, James Traficant, Pete McCloskey and Rick Sanchez.

More recently, we have seen the ascent to real political power on the part of a number of politicians whose pandering to Israel has been notorious, indicating that the path to the White House goes through Tel Aviv and the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) offices on H Street in the District of Columbia. Nikki Haley, who recently resigned as United Nations Ambassador, gained national attention when she became the first state governor to sign off on laws that would punish supporters of the non-violent BDS movement. Subsequently, as ambassador, she became noted for her impassioned defense of Israel, to include complaining that “nowhere has the U.N.’s failure been more consistent and more outrageous than in its bias against our close ally Israel.” She vowed that the “days of Israel bashing are over” and is now being groomed by the neocons as a possible presidential candidate for 2020. Whichever way it goes, she will be showered with money by Israel supporters as she finds her perch in the private sector, like others before her doing “work” that she does not understand while also making speeches about the importance of the Israeli relationship.

All of that said, one of the truly odd aspects of the Israeli/Jewish dominance is its ability to change the United States. Normally, a tiny client state attached to a great power would conform to its patron, but in the U.S.-Israel relationship the reverse has happened. When 9/11 occurred Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was pleased, commenting that the attack would tie the United States more closely to Israel in its war against “terrorism,” which to him meant his Islamic neighbors in the Middle East. Since that time, the bilateral “special” relationship has conformed to what Professors Stephen Walt and John Mearsheimer observed in their groundbreaking book “The Israel Lobby and U.S. Foreign Policy,” namely that the United States does things in the Middle East that cannot be attributed to national interest. Rather, Washington behaves in a certain way due to the power of Israel and its lobby. There is no other way to explain it.

The emergence of Israeli practices as models to be adopted by U.S. agencies has occurred, to be sure, to include Israeli training of American policemen and soldiers in their “methods,” but the odd thing is that as Israel has lurched to the right and embraced political extremism under Netanyahu, the United States has done the same thing, curtailing civil liberties with the Patriot Acts, the Military Commissions Act, and various updates of the Authorization to Use Military Force. Indefinite detention without trial and assassination of citizens overseas is now acceptable in America and criticizing Israel could soon become a criminal offense in spite of the First Amendment. In short, the United States of America has become more like Israel rather than vice versa.

With one or two exceptions, there is no one in the United States government, elected or civil service, who has anything that is not wonderful to say about Israel in spite of the numerous war crimes and crimes against humanity being committed by Netanyahu nearly daily, the unfunded costs of the wars fought in part on behalf of Israel, and the thousands of dead American soldiers plus the hundreds of thousands of dead foreigners, nearly all Muslims. Indeed, Netanyahu is treated like a conquering hero, having received 23 standing ovations from Congress in 2015 when he was in the United States complaining about an agreement with Iran made by President Barack Obama. This inside the beltway approval of Israel contrasts sharply with the general view of the rest of the world, which sees both the U.S. and Israel negatively as the two nations most likely to start a new war.

There are several recent articles that demonstrate pretty clearly the danger in allowing Israel and its friends to have the power and access that they currently enjoy purely because government and the media make no effort to tell them “no” and rein them in. One comes from New Zealand where two women wrote a letter to the pop singer Lorde, urging her to cancel an appearance in Israel due to the treatment of the Palestinians. Lorde posted the letter on twitter, agreed and the trip was canceled.

The tale would have ended there but for the fact that Israel’s parliament the Knesset has passed a law now making it illegal to support a boycott of Israel ANYWHERE IN THE WORLD [my emphasis]. Enter the group called Shurat HaDin, which is an Israeli government supported lawfare instrument, that seeks to find and sue the perceived enemies of the Jewish state, punishing them through court costs and potentially bankruptcy.

The lawsuit argued that Lorde’s response on twitter after receiving the letter showed her decision was directly influenced by the New Zealand women’s plea. Three Israeli ticket holders filed the suit, claiming the cancellation had caused emotional distress. The Israeli court awarded damages of $12,000 dollars and their lawyer, Nitsana Darshan-Leitner of Shurat HaDin, boasted that the verdict was “precedent-setting,” sending a message that “no one can boycott Israel without paying for it.” Israeli government agents in New Zealand are taking steps to obtain the money, even though it remains unclear whether the plaintiffs will be able to collect the cash. Darshan-Leitner explained that she will seek to enforce the judgment through “international treaties” and go after the women’s bank accounts, either in New Zealand or if they try to travel abroad. Even if she is unsuccessful, the lawsuits will have a chilling effect on any individual or group seeking to criticize Israel’s brutal behavior by endorsing what once were perfectly legal boycotts.

A second story is possibly even more bizarre. On October 10th, U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said that “Israel is everything we want the entire Middle East to look like going forward” while asserting that the bilateral relationship between Washington and Tel Aviv is “stronger than ever.” Pompeo was keynote speaker at an award ceremony hosted by the Jewish Institute for National Security of America in Washington D.C. He also hailed Israel as “democratic and prosperous,” adding “it desires peace, it is a home to a free press and a thriving economy.”

Pompeo also mentioned Iran, condemning the latter’s “corrupt leaders [who] assault the human rights of their own people and finance terrorism in every corner of the Middle East”. He also announced to a cheering audience that he had that same day denied a $165 million transfer of aid to the Palestinian Authority (PA) because of the PA’s “funding of terror.” Pompeo was referring to the PA’s refusal to comply with Washington’s demands that it end the so-called “martyr payments” to the families of those killed or imprisoned by Israeli occupation forces.

Pompeo, together with National Security Advisor John Bolton, has been the driving force behind punishing the Iranians and Palestinians. Like others in Washington, he understands that success inside the beltway is best guaranteed by binding oneself as closely to Israel as possible. Pompeo certainly knows that Israel is not democratic, does not desire peace and is itself a major source of terrorism. Its government is corrupt, witness the current trial of Benjamin Netanyahu’s wife as well as the charges pending against the prime minister himself. A number of Israeli leaders have wound up in jail in the past few years. To describe Israel as a model for the entire Middle East is absurd, but, then again, Pompeo was speaking in front of the Jewish Institute for National Security and presumably intended to suck up to his wealthy and politically powerful audience.

How does Israel maintain its control over American politicians? First of all, no politician who wants to get reelected can risk even the mildest criticism of the Jewish state. Anyone who does so will be pilloried in the media before finding him or herself confronted by an extremely well-funded opponent who will oust them from office. And anyone who even suggests that the Palestinians are human beings that are being severely punished by a powerful Israel had best watch his or her back. On October 8th Congressman Eliot Engel of New York spoke regarding liberal Democrat rising star Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and three other liberals seeking congressional seats next month, all of whom have expressed sympathy for the Palestinians while also criticizing Israel’s heavy handed repression.

Engel told a New York synagogue gathering that had been organized and promoted by AIPAC that all Democrats “need to be educated” in support of Israel. “We are going to continue to work in Congress to make sure that we have overwhelming support for Israel on both sides of the aisle… I am certainly cognizant of the fact that people who are coming in as far as I’m concerned on the Democratic side, will be educated and need to be educated. But we have overwhelming support for Israel in the Congress. And… it will continue that way. We will maintain it that way.”

So, maintaining “overwhelming support” for Israel requires doing whatever is necessary, be it fair or foul, and many Jews and Jewish organizations worldwide, like Engel, are prepared to place alleged Israeli interests ahead of those of the countries where they actually reside. In America, Jewish groups and individuals have succeeded in buying politicians and using their money and control over much of the media to corrupt the entire political system to benefit Israel.

Israel should be judged by how it behaves, not by how well it buys favor among morally challenged politicians and media shills. Nor should it be seen favorably as it engages, threatens and destroys critics. When private citizens cannot write a letter to an entertainer without risk of being sued, deference to perpetual Israeli victimhood has gone way too far. When an intelligent man like Mike Pompeo finds it in his interest to say something transparently stupid in praise of Israel, something which he knows to be the reverse of the truth, the corruption of our elites becomes clear even to those who choose to remain blind to it. When a candidate for national office has to be “educated” by Jewish politicians to say the right things about Israel it smacks of Stalinism.

We Americans don’t need any more of this nonsense, which is inter alia destroying our liberties. It is largely driven by the guilt laden “holocaust hucksterism,” as Norman Finkelstein has termed it, that has been giving Israel a free pass for seventy years. It is time for a change in thinking about how we view our “good friend and ally” Israel, a country that is neither. It is time for government to do what is best for Americans, not for Israelis.

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.

October 16, 2018 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Corruption, Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Timeless or most popular, Wars for Israel | , , , , , , | 5 Comments

Background of Russia-Greek Summit in December: Greek Defense Chief Makes Landmark Foreign Policy Proposals

By Alex GORKA | Strategic Culture Foundation | 13.10.2018

Greece’s Defense Minister Panos Kammenos visited the United States on October 9 to make two proposals that would change a lot if accepted: a new Balkans military alliance and substantial expanding of US military presence in the country. The latter includes setting up three military bases in Larissa, in Volos, in Alexandroupolis on a more permanent basis. The regional defense alliance, formed to diminish “Russia’s influence”, is to comprise Greece, Macedonia (FYROM), Albania, Bulgaria, and later Serbia. “I want to affirm that Greece considers the United States a strategic partner and ally… the only one, I dare to say,” he said during the meeting with US Defense Secretary James Mattis. “It is very important for Greece that the United States deploy military assets in Greece on a more permanent basis, not only in Souda Bay but also in Larissa, in Volos, in Alexandropoulis,” he added.

In the spring of 2018, the US began operating MQ-9 Reaper drones out of Greece’s Larisa Air Force Base. The American-Greek defense cooperation agenda includes the extension of the agreement for the use of the US naval base in Souda Bay, Crete, the upgrading of the Greek fleet of F-16 military jets and the plans to build a second military base in southern Crete. The United States and Greece are reportedly discussing the creation of a military base on the island of Karpathos in the South Aegean Sea, between Rhodes and Crete. According to the plans, the island will host US Patriot air defense missile systems and F-22 Raptor fighters. US F-35 will be stationed in Volos, F-16 in Andravia, while F-15 are already in Souda airbase in Crete.

As the relationship with Turkey continues to deteriorate, Greece acquires a more significant military role for the United States in the Mediterranean as well as the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region. The Wall Street Journal reported last month, “the US military is in talks to expand its operations in Greece, including using more air and naval bases here, signaling a potential move toward the eastern Mediterranean amid growing tensions with Turkey.” According to the source, US officials who had visited Greece not long before the publication said both the government and the opposition were receptive to strengthening military ties. Joseph Dunford, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, believes that the “geography of Greece and the opportunities here are pretty significant.”

A military alliance of Greek Cyprus, Israel and Greece, Eastern Mediterranean Alliance (EMA), has actually been formed. Greece and Israel have a military cooperation agreement in place since 2015. The military ties between Cyprus and Israel are also expanding. After a trilateral conference held in Larnaca in June, defense chiefs of the three countries pledged to expand cooperation on cyber-security, joint military drills and search and rescue operations in the eastern Mediterranean. The three also visited the US together in May. Last month, the United States opened its first permanent military facility in Israel.

The US has recently changed its Syria policy, including the support of the Kurds that angers Turkey so much. With the tariffs and sanctions war unleashed by Washington against Ankara, it appears to have nothing to lose. The United States is considering permanent cuts to its military presence in Incirlik Air Base in southern Turkey, a strategic point for its military operations in Syria. This possibility is very real as several pro-government Turkish lawyers have reportedly filed charges against US Air Force officers associated with the base, alleging they are connected to those who staged the attempted coup d’état against Turkey’s government in 2016.

Greece wants Alexandroupolis to become a hub for the gas being exported from Israel via Cyprus, Crete and Greece to Italy. The route will bypass Turkey, which is adamant in its desire to prevent such a scenario. It says part of the exclusive economic zone of Cyprus is under Turkish jurisdiction. A conflict is possible and the EMA partners want the US to be on their side. America needs the allies too as it strives to increase its clout in the Middle East. Libya is among the countries it wants to control, while rolling Russia back. The United States needs military support, especially bases, as it has decided to stay in Syria “until Iran withdraws its forces”. The growing military cooperation between the EMA alliance and the US reflects nothing else but war preparations.

In summer, Greece expelled two Russian diplomats accused of attempting to instill opposition to the agreement in order to prevent Macedonia’s NATO membership. Russia’s Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov subsequently canceled a planned visit to Athens. All these trends and events create certain background before the visit of Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras to Russia scheduled on Dec. 7 (it had been previously planned for Dec.12). The two countries have always been friends and close partners but the announced plans to turn Greece into a US aircraft carrier in the Mediterranean is a matter of concern and not only for Moscow.

October 13, 2018 Posted by | Economics, Militarism, Timeless or most popular, Wars for Israel | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Wasn’t she supposed to serve US? Twitter unamused as IDF ‘salutes’ Haley for her support for Israel

RT | October 10, 2018

A tweet from the IDF thanking Nikki Haley for her “unwavering support” for Israel has sparked an avalanche of snarky comments, with many pointing out that Haley was supposed to be the US, not Israeli, envoy to the UN.

In a surprise announcement on Tuesday, Haley resigned her post as Washington’s envoy to the United Nations. Haley’s departure ignited a Twitter storm of speculation about why she chose to step down, and what she’s planning next. Israel’s military, however, used the announcement as an opportunity to thank the retiring US diplomat for her service to the Jewish state.

“Thank you @nikkihaley for your service in the @UN and unwavering support for Israel and the truth. The soldiers of the Israel Defense Forces salute you!” the IDF’s official Twitter account wrote.

But the IDF’s appreciative “salute” to Haley was immediately swarmed with angry and sarcastic replies, with Twitter users accusing the former US envoy of putting Israel’s interests ahead of her own country’s.

“’Unwavering support’ aka, blind allegiance,” one Twitter user noted bluntly.

“You love her for the reasons the rest of us despise her,” another netizen shot back at the IDF. “She left the Human Rights Council, pulled the US out of Iran deal, slashed funds to UNRWA, moved embassy to Jerusalem, and was exaggerated in her support for the IDF when they abuse Palestinian human rights.”

Twitter user “Alan” made a similar, although considerably more succinct, observation: “I thought she was meant to be serving… Never mind.”

Haley has been a fierce defender of Israel, repeatedly using her seat on the UN Security Council to shield Tel Aviv from international criticism. During her tenure at the UN, the US envoy lashed out at the international community for allegedly “bullying” Tel Aviv, warning that the she “wasn’t going to have it.”

“We had the back of Israel, and if they were going to mess with Israel they had to mess with the US,” she said.

Earlier, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu praised Haley for leading an “uncompromising struggle” on behalf of the “justice of our country.”

He was referring to Israel, not the United States. Just to be clear.

October 10, 2018 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Wars for Israel | , , , | 2 Comments