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What Google and Facebook Are Hiding

The American Deep State Strikes Back

By Ron Unz • Unz Review • May 24, 2020

After several months of record-breaking traffic our alternative media webzine suffered a sharp blow when it was suddenly purged by Facebook at the end of April. Not only was our rudimentary Facebook page eliminated, but all subsequent attempts by readers to post our articles to the world’s largest social network produced an error message describing the content as “abusive.” Our entire website had been banned.

Facebook publishes a monthly report cataloging its actions to eliminate “improper content,” and although our publication was probably one of the largest and most popular ever so proscribed, the explanation provided was remarkably cursory, with our name mentioned in only two scattered sentences across the 47 page document.

Our investigation linked this network to VDARE, a website known for posting anti-immigration content, and individuals associated with a similar website The Unz Review.

Although the people behind this operation attempted to conceal their coordination, our investigation linked this network to VDARE, a website known for posting anti-immigration content, and to individuals associated with a similar website The Unz Review.

As I’ve previously discussed, characterizing our alternative media publication as an “anti-immigration” website “similar” to VDare seemed utterly bizarre considering that only about 0.2% of our 2020 content was republished from that source and many months had elapsed since we had last featured a piece on immigration. So I strongly suspected that the claim merely served as an excuse.

I don’t use Facebook or other social networks myself, and noticed little reduction in our daily traffic following that purge, seeming to demonstrate our lack of reliance upon social media. But a week later, this abruptly changed, and our regular daily readership dropped by a significant 15-20%, hardly a crippling blow but quite distressing, setting us back many months of previous growth.

This puzzled me. Why would the Facebook ban have had such limited initial impact but then suddenly become so much more serious? Eventually I discovered that a second, even more powerful Internet giant had also banned us, which explained the sharp drop. Our entire website and all its many millions of pages of serious content had been silently deranked by Google, thus eliminating nearly all our incoming traffic from search results. A few quick checks confirmed this unfortunate situation, best illustrated by a particularly striking example.

Just over a decade ago, I had published an important article entitled The Myth of Hispanic Crime, and for ten years it had always placed extremely high in Google searches, generally being ranked #2 across the 52,000,000 results for “Hispanic crime” and also #2 among the 139,000,000 results for “Latino crime.” The impact of my analysis on the heated public debate had also been quite considerable, and a few years ago a leading academic specialist even asked me to blurb his book on that subject. But my article had now vanished from all such Google searches.

Although Google holds an overwhelming monopoly for web searches across the Western world, comparable products such as Bing and DuckDuckGo using similar technology do exist, and these still list my article among their results, with Bing ranking it at #2 for “Hispanic crime” and “Latino crime,” while DuckDuckGo places it #4 in each. But no one would ever find it using Google.

All the other pages of our website have been similarly blacklisted, effectively eliminated from all web searches courtesy of Google’s information monopoly. This even included the periodical content library that I had built during the 2000s, containing the near-complete archives of hundreds of America’s most influential publications of the last 150 years. Millions of these important articles were available no where else, and their disappearance representing a tremendous loss to academic scholarship.

Google still does contains all these pages, and if the additional specifier “unz” is added to the search, the results do come up, but for anyone not knowing where to look, our entire website and all its content has completely disappeared. This explained our sudden 15-20% reduction in regular traffic.

Internet law is obviously quite murky, but it seems a great shame if Google has decided to use its software monopoly to severely manipulate search results and deliberately hide important information. The notion of Google “disappearing” an entire website and all its material is surely fraught with peril. Should Google’s executives be allowed to “disappear” whichever politicians or candidates they dislike? Should wealthy individuals or powerful groups be able to pay or lobby Google to have their critics removed from all search results?

During 2018 Google employees themselves took a very strong public stance on exactly this issue, protesting their own company’s willingness to produce a “censored” version of their search engine for use in China, a controversy that reached the national headlines, and soon forced executives to abandon the project. But although Google censorship of content within China still remains an inflammatory topic, Google censorship of American content is now apparently so routine and acceptable that it took me more than a week to discover that our entire website had been thrown down the Orwellian “memory hole.”

I’d always taken considerable pride that my Hispanic Crime article had spent a decade ranked #2 among nearly 200,000,000 Google results for that important topic, and was dismayed that Google “disappeared” it. But in fairness, I’d have to admit that those individuals whose views make themselves disagreeable to ruling political elites have sometimes suffered far worse retaliation. For example, my Saturday morning newspapers carried the latest episode in the unfortunate story of Jamal Khashoggi, the dissenting Saudi journalist whose critical writings in the Washington Post so irritated his government that they had him killed and his body dismembered with a bone-saw. Much as I liked my article, having it deranked by Google hardly seems a comparable fate.

For years our website has published a great deal of extremely controversial material, and many readers are probably much more surprised that Google and Facebook took so long to purge us rather than they finally did so.

Consider, for example, my own American Pravda series, which together with related articles runs 280,000 words and has drawn about 3 million pageviews, while attracting over 25,000 comments totaling another 3.5 million words. Many of these articles candidly address some of the most controversial aspects of the JFK Assassination, the 9/11 Attacks, and the history of World War II, topics so touchy that a couple of years ago the redoubtable Israel Shamir described me as the “Kamikazi from California,” and suggested along with numerous other observers that our website might soon be annihilated as a consequence. But aside from a rather lackluster rebuke from the usually ferocious ADL, absolutely nothing untoward happened.

Yet now we have been almost simultaneously banned by both Google and Facebook, America’s leading gatekeepers to the Internet, concerted action that hardly seems likely to have been coincidental, especially coming after years of apparent equanimity. So what had prompted this sudden purge?

I think the obvious answer was my most recent American Pravda installment, which attracted more early readership and social media interest than anything I had previously written, and which appeared just eight days before Facebook’s ban.

My article noted some important facts that are less widely known that they should be, and are quite embarrassing both to our own government and its overly subservient mainstream journalists.

For decades, the American media had regularly denounced the Chinese government for its notorious 1989 slaughter of the student protesters at Tiananmen and shamed its leadership for continuing to flatly deny that historical reality, with China’s demands for censorship of the massacre being a leading source of conflict with Google. However, I pointed out that more than twenty years ago the former Beijing bureau chief of the Washington Post, who had personally covered the events, published a long article in our most prestigious journalism review admitting that the infamous “Tiananmen Square Massacre” had never actually happened, and was just a concoction of incompetent journalists and dishonest propagandists. Yet for decades the promotion of that debunked hoax by our elite media has continued unabated.

As another example, I noted that back in 1999 our warplanes had bombed the Chinese embassy in Belgrade, killing or wounding dozens of Chinese diplomats. At the time, our media uniformly reported the attack as a tragic accident, while ridiculing China’s government for alleging otherwise. However, just a few months later, many of the leading newspapers in Britain and the rest of the world revealed that the bombing had indeed been deliberate, quoting numerous NATO intelligence sources to that effect. But since the American media completely boycotted this major international story, very few Americans ever discovered that the Chinese had been telling the truth all along and our own government lying.

Although these historical items were important, they merely set the stage for a far more explosive analysis. The bulk of my 7,400 word article presented the very considerable circumstantial evidence that our current Coronavirus national disaster was entirely self-inflicted, being the unintended blowback from an extremely reckless American biowarfare attack against China (and Iran), presumably organized by the Deep State Neocons or other rogue elements in our national security establishment.

This ongoing disease epidemic has already killed 100,000 Americans and wrecked our economy, so we can easily understand why the guilty parties would do all they could to prevent some of the critical information from getting into general circulation, pressuring Google and Facebook to suppress the crucial evidence. A few excerpts from my long analysis, now banned by America’s Internet giants, are worth once again repeating:

As the coronavirus gradually began to spread beyond China’s own borders, another development occurred that greatly multiplied my suspicions. Most of these early cases had occurred exactly where one might expect, among the East Asian countries bordering China. But by late February Iran had become the second epicenter of the global outbreak. Even more surprisingly, its political elites had been especially hard-hit, with a full 10% of the entire Iranian parliament soon infected and at least a dozen of its officials and politicians dying of the disease, including some who were quite senior. Indeed, Neocon activists on Twitter began gleefully noting that their hatred Iranian enemies were now dropping like flies.

Let us consider the implications of these facts. Across the entire world the only political elites that have yet suffered any significant human losses have been those of Iran, and they died at a very early stage, before significant outbreaks had even occurred almost anywhere else in the world outside China. Thus, we have America assassinating Iran’s top military commander on Jan. 2nd and then just a few weeks later large portions of the Iranian ruling elites became infected by a mysterious and deadly new virus, with many of them soon dying as a consequence. Could any rational individual possibly regard this as a mere coincidence?

* * *

For obvious reasons, the Trump Administration has become very eager to emphasize the early missteps and delays in the Chinese reaction to the viral outbreak in Wuhan, and has presumably encouraged our media outlets to direct their focus in that direction.

As an example of this, the Associated Press Investigative Unit recently published a rather detailed analysis of those early events purportedly based upon confidential Chinese documents. Provocatively entitled “China Didn’t Warn Public of Likely Pandemic for 6 Key Days”, the piece was widely distributed, running in abridged form in the NYT and elsewhere. According to this reconstruction, the Chinese government first became aware of the seriousness of this public health crisis on Jan. 14th, but delayed taking any major action until Jan. 20th, a period of time during which the number of infections greatly multiplied.

Last month, a team of five WSJ reporters produced a very detailed and thorough 4,400 word analysis of the same period, and the NYT has published a helpful timeline of those early events as well. Although there may be some differences of emphasis or minor disagreements, all these American media sources agree that Chinese officials first became aware of the serious viral outbreak in Wuhan in early to mid-January, with the first known death occurring on Jan. 11th, and finally implemented major new public health measures later that same month. No one has apparently disputed these basic facts.

But with the horrific consequences of our own later governmental inaction being obvious, elements within our intelligence agencies have sought to demonstrate that they were not the ones asleep at the switch. Earlier this month, an ABC News story cited four separate government sources to reveal that as far back as late November, a special medical intelligence unit within our Defense Intelligence Agency had produced a report warning that an out-of-control disease epidemic was occurring in the Wuhan area of China, and widely distributed that document throughout the top ranks of our government, warning that steps should be taken to protect US forces based in Asia. After the story aired, a Pentagon spokesman officially denied the existence of that November report, while various other top level government and intelligence officials refused to comment. But a few days later, Israeli television mentioned that in November American intelligence had indeed shared such a report on the Wuhan disease outbreak with its NATO and Israeli allies, thus seeming to independently confirm the complete accuracy of the original ABC News story and its several government sources.

It therefore appears that elements of the Defense Intelligence Agency were aware of the deadly viral outbreak in Wuhan more than a month before any officials in the Chinese government itself. Unless our intelligence agencies have pioneered the technology of precognition, I think this may have happened for the same reason that arsonists have the earliest knowledge of future fires.

Although criticism of the mainstream media has been the central theme of my American Pravda series, I always spend at least a couple of hours every morning carefully reading our leading newspapers, which I regard as unmatched sources of important information so long as their articles are treated with proper caution and rigor. As an example, I would note that most of the crucial evidence suggesting an American biowarfare attack was hidden in plain sight in such eminently respectable news sources as the NYT, the WSJ, and ABC News.

As our global confrontation with China has grown hotter, my morning New York Times has continued to provide invaluable information for anyone who is willing to read it carefully.

For example, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo probably ranks as the most prominent Deep State Neocon in the Trump Administration, and is a leading architect of our confrontation with China. Last week he broke quarantine to take a trip to Israel and hold important talks with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, as reported in a 1,600 word NYT article. Although the majority of their discussion concerned American support for the proposed annexation of the Palestinian West Bank, a serious disagreement came with regard to Israel’s growing economic ties with China, with the piece noting that the Jewish State had “antagonized” Washington by allowing Chinese companies to make major infrastructure investments, some of them in sensitive locations. According to the three Times journalists, Netanyahu firmly stood his ground, determined to “push back” against Pompeo’s repeated warnings and refused to reconsider his government’s China policy.

But just a couple of days later, the Times then reported that Du Wei, the Chinese ambassador to Israel, age 57, had been found dead at his home, having suddenly fallen victim to “unspecified health problems.” The piece emphasized that he had become a leading public critic of America’s current policies toward China, and the juxtaposition of these two consecutive NYT articles raised all sorts of obvious questions in my mind.

According to standard mortality tables, an American male age 57 has less than a 1% chance of dying in a particular year, and given the similarity in overall life expectancy, the same must surely be true of Chinese males. Recently appointed Chinese ambassadors are likely to be in reasonably good health rather than suffering the last stages of terminal cancer, and such causes together with obvious, visible injuries account for more than half of all fatalities at around that age. Thus, the likelihood that the 57-year-old Chinese diplomat died naturally within that two day window was probably far less than 1 in 50,000. Lightning does sometimes strike under the most unlikely of circumstances, but not very often; and I think that the unexplained deaths of ambassadors during international confrontations probably fall into the same category.

It therefore seems exceptionally unlikely that the sudden demise of Ambassador Du was not somehow directly connected with the heated dispute between Pompeo and Netanyahu over Israel’s China ties that had occurred two days earlier. The exact details and circumstances are entirely obscure, and we can merely speculate. But since speculation has not yet been outlawed by government edict, an interesting possibility comes to mind.

In sharp constrast to the elected leaders of America’s vassal-states throughout Europe and Asia, Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu hardly regards himself as beholden to the American government. He is a powerful, arrogant individual who remembers the endless standing ovations that he enjoyed when he addressed our own House and Senate, receiving the sort of bipartisan public adulation that would be unimaginable for a Donald Trump, who remains deeply unpopular with half our Congress. So faced with demands by a Trump envoy that he sacrifice his own nation’s interests by cancelling important Chinese economic projects, he apparently disregarded Pompeo’s warnings and told him to get lost.

The classic 1972 film The Godfather ranks #2 in the IMDb Movie Database, and one of its most famous scenes concerns a conflict between a powerful and arrogant Hollywood film mogul and a visiting representative of the Corleone family. When the polite requests of the latter are casually disregarded, the movie tycoon awakens to discover the bloody head of his prized race-horse in his own bed, thereby demonstrating the serious nature of the warning he had received and indicating that it should not be disregarded. Pompeo had recently served as CIA Director, and I suspect he called in a few favors with elements of the Israeli Mossad and had them take lethal steps to convince Netanyahu that our demands that he reassess his ties with China were of a serious nature, not to be treated lightly. I strongly suspect that the controversial Chinese-Israeli economic ventures will soon be abandoned.

I had never heard of the unfortunate Chinese ambassador prior to his sudden demise, and under normal circumstances any such notions of American foul play might be dismissed as absurd. But consider that just a few months earlier, we had publicly assassinated a top Iranian leader after he was lured to Baghdad for peace negotiations, an act vastly more weighty than the plausible deniability of of a middle-aged diplomat being found dead in his own home of unknown causes.

A few days later, my Wall Street Journal carried an article entitled China’s ‘Wolf Warrior’ Diplomats Are to Fight, beginning on the front page and running 2,200 words, by far the longest piece appearing in that day’s edition. Yet although the late Ambassador Du had been in the forefront of this ongoing Chinese campaign to challenge American influence, both in Israel and during his previous posting to Ukraine, and the sudden demise of this particular “wolf warrior” was surely known to the journalists, his name appeared nowhere in the text, leading me to wonder whether it had been deliberately excised to avoid raising obvious suspicions in the WSJ readership.

For hundreds of years since the Treaty of Westphalia, the lives of diplomats have been almost always treated as sacrosanct, and a typical response to breaking such international conventions might be tit-for-tat retaliation. China’s leadership tends to be remarkably pragmatic, and recognizes that its national strength is rapidly growing even as our own society decays and declines, so perhaps they will forego any such reaction, at least for the time being. But if any American diplomats or other ranking officials begin to suffer strange fatalities, the explanation may be less than mysterious, though Google and Facebook will certainly do their best to keep it so.

May 24, 2020 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Deception, Full Spectrum Dominance | , , , | Leave a comment

Drone Pilots have Bank Accounts and Credit Cards Frozen by Feds for Exposing US Murder

By William N. Grigg | The Free Thought Project | November 25, 2015

The U.S. Government failed to deter them through threats of criminal prosecution, and clumsy attempts to intimidate their families. Now four former Air Force drone operators-turned-whistleblowers have had their credit cards and bank accounts frozen, according to human rights attorney Jesselyn Radack.

“My drone operators went public this week and now their credit cards and bank accounts are frozen,” Radack lamented on her Twitter feed (the spelling of her post has been conventionalized). This was done despite the fact that none of them has been charged with a criminal offense – but this is a trivial formality in the increasingly Sovietesque American National Security State.

Michael Haas, Brandon Bryant, Cian Westmoreland and Stephen Lewis, who served as drone operators in the US Air Force, have gone public with detailed accounts of the widespread corruption and institutionalized indifference to civilian casualties that characterize the program. Some of those disclosures were made in the recent documentary Drone; additional details have been provided in an open letter from the whistleblowers to President Obama, Defense Secretary Ashton Carter, and CIA Director John Brennan.

“We are former Air Force service members,” the letter begins. We joined the Air Force to protect American lives and to protect our Constitution. We came to the realization that the innocent civilians we were killing only fueled the feelings of hatred that ignited terrorism and groups like ISIS, while also serving as a fundamental recruiting tool similar to Guantanamo Bay. This administration and its predecessors have built a drone program that is one of the most devastating driving forces for terrorism and destabilization around the world.”

Elsewhere the former drone operators have described how their colleagues dismissed children as “fun-sized terrorists” and compared killing them to “cutting the grass before it grows too long.” Children who live in countries targeted by the drone program are in a state of constant terror, according to Westmoreland: “There are 15-year-olds growing up who have not lived a day without drones overhead, but you also have expats who are watching what’s going on in their home countries and seeing regularly the violations that are happening there, and that is something that could radicalize them.”

By reliable estimates, ninety percent of those killed in drone strikes are entirely harmless people, making the program a singularly effective method of producing anti-American terrorism. “We kill four and create ten,” Bryant said during a November 19 press conference, referring to potential terrorists. “If you kill someone’s father, uncle or brother who had nothing to do with anything, their families are going to want revenge.”

Haas explained that the institutional culture of the drone program emphasized and encouraged the dehumanization of the targeted populations. “There was a much more detached outlook about who these people were we were monitoring,” he recalled. “Shooting was something to be lauded and something we should strive for.”

Unable to repress his conscience or choke down his moral disgust, Haas took refuge in alcohol and drug abuse, which he says is predictably commonplace among drone operators. At least a half-dozen members of his unit were using bath salts and could be found “impaired” while on duty, Haas testifies.

Among the burdens Bryant now bears is the knowledge that he participated in the mission that killed a fellow U.S. citizen, Anwar al-Awlaki. Identified as a radical cleric and accused of offering material support for al-Qaeda, al-Awlaki was executed by a drone strike in Yemen. His 16-year-old son, Abdulrahman, was killed in a separate drone strike a few weeks later while sitting down to dinner at the home of a family friend. Asked about the killing of a native-born U.S. citizen – who, at age 16, was legally still a child – former White House press secretary Robert Gibbs appeared to justify that act by blaming it on the irresponsibility of the innocent child’s father.

As Bryant points out, as a matter of law the elder al-Awlaki was innocent, as well.

“We were told that al-Awlaki deserved to die, he deserved to be killed as a traitor, but article 3 of section 2 of the U.S. Constitution states that even a traitor deserves a fair trial in front of a jury of his peers,” Bryant notes, lamenting that his role in the “targeted killing” of a U.S. citizen without a trial was a violation of his constitutional oath.

Investigative reporter Jeremy Scahill has produced evidence suggesting that the White House-approved killing of Anwar al-Awlaki’s son may have been carried out as retaliation against the family for refusing to cooperate in the search for the cleric. There are indications that the government has tried to intimidate the whistleblowers by intimidating their families.

In October, while Brandon Bryant was preparing to testify about the drone program before a German parliamentary committee, his mother LanAnn received a visit in her Missoula, Montana home from two representatives of the Air Force’s Office of Special Investigations. The men claimed that her personal information was in the hands of the Islamic State, which had placed her name on a “hit list.” She was also told not to share that disclosure with anyone – a directive she promptly ignored by informing Ms. Radack, who represents Brandon and the other whistleblowers.

According to Radack, a very similar episode occurred last March in which the stepparent of another whistleblower received a nearly identical visit from agents of the Air Force OSI. “This is the US government wasting taxpayer dollars trying to silence, intimidate and shut up people. It’s a very amateurish way to shut up a whistleblower … by intimidating and scaring their parents. This would be laughable if it weren’t so frightening.”

Given the role played by the U.S. government in fomenting, equipping, and abetting the growth of ISIS, such warnings have to be perceived as credible, albeit, indirect death threats.

May 23, 2020 Posted by | Full Spectrum Dominance, Timeless or most popular, War Crimes | , | 1 Comment

Obamagate Shows Biden Is Inadequate in Challenging Trump

By Paul Antonopoulos | May 16, 2020

Former U.S. President Barack Obama is coming under increasing pressure, led by what President Donald Trump is calling “Obamagate.” This comes as Mexico has requested to finally clarify the affair with the secret sale of American weapons to Mexican drug cartels. Mexico is asking for the case to be clarified after almost ten years.

In this secret operation conducted by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, weapons from the U.S. were sold to Mexican drug cartels. The U.S. claimed that about 2,000 automatic weapons were sold to Mexicans so that the Barack Obama administration could follow their path to the drug cartels. Instead, these weapons were used in massacres. Mexican authorities are now seeking answers from the United States.

In addition to selling weapons to Mexican drug cartels, Obama is responsible for a lot of global upheaval on the world stage – primarily the so-called “Arab Spring” that should be more accurately described as the “Arab Winter” as it brought death and destruction across the Arab world.

The sale of these weapons to Mexican drug cartels is another ugly legacy of Obama’s rule that liberals like to view as one of the best periods of American history. Let’s not forget that in 2009 Obama won the Nobel Peace Prize for his apparent “extraordinary efforts to strengthen international diplomacy and cooperation between people.”

The majority of U.S. media will most likely try and find appropriate excuses so they can minimize Obama’s role in these scandals. It is completely clear that the battle over who will be in the White House in the next four years is now taking focus on the Obama era as opposed to Trump’s mishandling of the coronavirus pandemic that has claimed the lives of over 80,000 Americans and infected more than 1.3 million people.

With endless tweets by Donald Trump dedicated to Obama over the past few days, it is as if the presidential battle in November will be fought between him and Obama, and not Democrat сandidate Joe Biden.

The reason for Trump’s many tweets against the former president was because of Obama’s private conversation that was leaked to the public in which he criticized the suspension of the investigation against Trump’s former national security adviser Michael Flynn, while he called Trump’s fight against the coronavirus epidemic a “chaotic disaster.”

The American president started tweeting on the morning of May 10 and stopped late in the evening, making over a hundred tweets against Obama. This exchange between Obama and Trump is not common in American politics as former presidents usually do not interfere in the politics of their successors. However, there are suggestions that Obama still has connections to the deep state and is actively undermining Trump.

Obama, who openly admitted he would remain active in politics and wished he could contend for a third term, could be exerting influence through Hillary Clinton and Biden. It is likely Obama is becoming more public as Trump’s opponent Biden is proving inadequate and incapable of defeating Trump.

The battle between Obama and Trump started with the announcement that the Ministry of Justice is terminating the investigation against former Trump national security adviser Michael Flynn. Flynn, who was probably the shortest-serving national security adviser in history, was sacked at the beginning of his term on charges of lying to Vice President Mike Pence about talks with the Russian ambassador to Washington. His removal triggered a chain of failed investigations and campaigns against Trump and his alleged links to Russian interference during the U.S. presidential election, which also ended in a failed impeachment.

In private conversations that leaked to the public, Obama described Flynn’s acquittal as a threat to the rule of law.

Trump also retweeted statements from CIA agent Buck Sexton, in which he accused Obama of sabotaging the Trump administration in the first days of his term. Sexton also called former FBI Director Andrew McCabe “a dishonorable partisan scumbag who has done incalculable damage to the reputation of the FBI and should be sitting in a cell for lying under oath”

Trump then continued with accusations on Twitter and said that Obama committed “the biggest political crime in American history, by far!” and ended briefly with “Obamagate.”

As for the affair with the secret operation of selling weapons to Mexican drug cartels, journalists of Forbes in 2011 wondered whether that operation would become Obama’s “Watergate,” and it appears that it very well could be. Obama’s attempts to smear Trump has not only backfired, but it could have very serious legal ramifications against him and others in his administration.

May 16, 2020 Posted by | Progressive Hypocrite, Timeless or most popular, War Crimes | , , | Leave a comment

Covid-19, Russiagate, Iraq – politicians are too happy to defer to convenient ‘experts’

By George Szamuely | RT | May 14, 2020

So-called “experts” are too narrow in their focus and too often wrong in their judgments to be able to decide the sorts of life-and-death issues a nation’s political leaders are asked to decide.

If “War is too important to be left to the generals,” as Georges Clemenceau, (France’s prime minister during World War I) claimed, then foreign policy is too important to be left to the intelligence agencies, and public policy is too important to be left to the scientists.

From the start of the Covid-19 pandemic, politicians and media fell over themselves in their rush to defer to the “experts.” Apparently, it was up to scientists to decide whether a country should shut down its economy and keep its citizens locked up in their homes in perpetuity. It was up to scientists to determine whether a country can, if ever, resume normal life. As for the consequences — economic depression, exploding national debt, lost businesses and means of livelihood, growing alcoholism and drug abuse, rise in suicides, spiraling untreated medical problems — those are things the public would just have to live with, because there could be no second-guessing of the scientists.

Science, a mantra against Trump

President Trump has been one of the few political leaders to attempt, on occasion, to question scientists’ judgments, and to suggest that political leaders shouldn’t cede policymaking to unelected experts.

Such temerity elicited spluttering rage from the media. ‘Trump’s Response to Virus Reflects a Long Disregard for Science,’ ran the headline of a typical New York Times story:

“As the nation confronts one of its worst public health disasters in generations, a moment that demands a leader willing to marshal the full might of the American scientific establishment, the White House is occupied by a president whose administration… has diminished the conclusions of scientists in formulating policy.”

‘Pandemic Brings Trump’s War on Science to the Boil’ was the headline of a recent Guardian article. Trump’s political opponents are also on board with ceding policymaking authority to the scientists. Presumptive Democrat nominee Joe Biden urged Trump to “Listen to the scientists. Listen to the doctors. Listen to what they have to say.” A few days later, in response to Trump’s refusal to wear a mask, Biden declared, “It’s important to follow the science, listen to the experts, do what they tell you.”

No one has championed the cause of “science” as fervently as House Speaker Nancy Pelosi. “Science is our key to unlocking our country. The last thing we need is political interference into science,” she announced in a recent tweet. Next day’s tweet stated, “What we must do — what science tells us we must do — is focus on expanding testing & contact tracing. That is the only way we can safely reopen our economy.” Asked by CNBC’s Jim Cramer when Americans could start going back to work, she resorted to what has become her familiar standby: “So, again, data, data, data, evidence, science. That is the answer to when we can go back.” On Fox News, she dismissed Trump as a “weak leader” because, bizarrely, he hadn’t ceded policymaking to the scientists: “And that might have been OK before, but we cannot continue down a path that is, again I’ll come back to science, science, science, evidence, data on how we should go forward.”

Not an exact science

What’s strange about this worship of the scientists is that their track record during the pandemic has hardly been impressive. The Imperial College model had predicted 2.2 million deaths in the United States and 510,000 in Great Britain. The supposedly anti-science Trump administration had taken the Imperial College model seriously and, as the New York Times admitted, the model “influenced the White House to strengthen its measures to isolate members of the public.” Imperial College’s Neil Ferguson then reversed himself and announced that UK deaths from the disease may not exceed 20,000. Interestingly, Ferguson cited the UK’s lockdown policy to explain his abrupt reversal. As Alex Berenson pointed out, the UK had instituted the lockdown only two days before Ferguson’s announcement, and lockdowns need at least two weeks to take effect. And ultimately, the UK’s death toll has already topped 30,000, so that prediction was wrong, as well.

The Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation’s model didn’t fare much better. In early April, when the White House was citing predicted numbers of 100,000 and 240,000 deaths, it predicted there would be 147,000 deaths by August. That estimate has since been revised more than twofold – first to 135,000, and now to 147,000. Downward or upward, the point is that while politicians are incessantly telling other politicians to “listen to scientists,” the scientists are all over the place. Until there is at least universal agreement on how to tally the death numbers, namely, whether deaths with the coronavirus are to be counted separately from, or jointly with, deaths from the coronavirus, many of these numbers will remain in the realm of speculation.

The saints of Russiagate

Let’s take a look at another set of experts whose findings have been allowed to shape public policy. There is no group of experts with a worse record than the intelligence agencies. The catastrophic 2003 invasion of Iraq was in large part based on their finding that Iraq possessed weapons of mass destruction.

Then there was the January 2017 Intelligence Community Assessment, which flatly claimed:

“We assess Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered an influence campaign in 2016 aimed at the US presidential election. Russia’s goals were to undermine public faith in the US democratic process, denigrate Secretary Clinton, and harm her electability and potential presidency. We further assess Putin and the Russian Government developed a clear preference for President-elect Trump.”

The intelligence agencies to this day have presented no conclusive evidence to support these claims. Yet politicians (even conservative politicians) and media (even conservative media) accept them as true and denounce as unpatriotic any attempt to call them into question. Any policy toward Russia other than total hostility — including repeated sanctions, provocation and preparation for armed conflict — was deemed unacceptable.

What politicians are for

Serious confrontation with a nuclear superpower is fraught with risk, and any US president would be derelict in his duties if he didn’t do everything in his power to avoid it. At a minimum, he should check whether the intelligence he had been fed was as solidly based as its producers claimed.

In Helsinki, during his July 2018 summit with President Putin, President Trump, acting with the responsibility his office requires, decided it was not in the interest of the US to pursue confrontation with Russia. Rather than accuse Russia of election interference, Trump expressed some skepticism as to the definitiveness of the US intelligence agencies’ findings. Media and political operatives rained denunciations on his head.

“Trump’s statements amounted to an unprecedented refusal by a US president to believe his own intelligence agencies over the word of a foreign adversary,” screamed CNN. “Millions of Americans will continue to wonder if the only possible explanation for this dangerous and inexplicable behavior is the possibility… that President Putin holds damaging information over President Trump,” declared Senator Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.). “I wonder if the Russians have something” on Trump, mused former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper. Former CIA Director John Brennan flatly accused Trump of “treason.”

Since then, of course, the intelligence agencies’ claims have unraveled in spectacular fashion. Special Counsel Robert Mueller failed to “establish that members of the Trump Campaign conspired or coordinated with the Russian government in its election interference activities.” The US government abandoned its two-year-long prosecution of a Russian company that had supposedly orchestrated a social media campaign to interfere in the 2016 election. Recently released House Intelligence Committee transcripts reveal that intelligence chiefs that had shot their mouths off on television about Trump-Russia admitted under oath that they had never personally seen any evidence of it. Most damagingly, Shawn Henry, president of CrowdStrike, admitted to having no conclusive evidence that it was the Russians who stole the DNC emails.

The Russian interference in the 2016 election story will soon be as discredited as the Iraqi WMDs story. The experts made claims that everyone needed to accept and that policymakers needed to act upon. As with the recommendations of the scientists, political leaders would have been better advised exercising their judgment rather than blindly following the experts. It’s what voters expect their leaders to do.

George Szamuely is a senior research fellow at Global Policy Institute (London) and author of Bombs for Peace: NATO’s Humanitarian War on Yugoslavia. Follow him on Twitter @GeorgeSzamuely

May 15, 2020 Posted by | Deception, Mainstream Media, Warmongering, Science and Pseudo-Science, Timeless or most popular | , , | 1 Comment

FORECAST: Amazon Will Endorse Fake Labor Unionism to Back Google’s ‘Online-Election’

A Color Revolution Against Trump

By Joaquin Flores | Strategic Culture Foundation | May 13, 2020

There is a rising National Labor Movement, but what we have seen holographed by an obvious DNC maneuver in collusion with Amazon and Walmart, and some hospitals, certainly is not it. If anything, such a move by the DNC will deliver an historic set-back to organized labor, one worse even than the leaders of labor have been able to arrange for themselves to date. The Democrat Party has moved forward onto the next phase of the plan to remove President Trump using the tactics of Color Revolution, now involving organized labor. These moves will involve the specter of Amazon, and Walmart workers and nurses (some already organized) organizing a yellow union (a company union) and hoaxing a general strike against conditions imposed by the company surrounding Covid-19. What we saw on May 1st was only a taste of what’s to come if provisions to the contrary are not made quickly.

In our piece on California secession, we showed how swiftly DNC allied media like Bloomberg News lined up to build support for an openly secessionist movement led by Governor Newsom.

Our series for SCF on the rising ‘National Labor Movement’ has proven extraordinarily prescient. Our first piece outlined some of the basics of America’s next great awakening, ‘Rage and Bloodshed Ahead: Democrat Betrayals and the Coming National Labor Movement’. It was written surrounding the ‘betrayal’ of Bernie Sanders by the DNC, and showed how the denial of a legal movement to eliminate private health insurance and improve working conditions at this critical moment in history, would lead towards an organic, bottom-up, militant labor movement. It will transcend the traditional left-right paradigm, and view power as people vs. elites. It would only be realized by being one and the same as much of the Trump populist base. This means embracing many of their truths, such as Deep State discourse as well as WHO skepticism.

Components of the coup tactic – color revolution against Trump

Secession movements are a part of the Color Revolution tactic, not just nation-wide ‘uprisings’ which are generally hyped in media and produced for virtual consumption as much within the country as it is for international audiences. We saw secession used in the Yugoslavia case, in the Libya case, and in the Syria case.

Another component of the Color Revolution is the traditional use of coup tactics. That’s the use of law-fare, abuse of the legal, constitutional nature or powers of the various branches of governments, including the weaponization of the judicial system, and the internal use of the intelligence services against a target. We saw this used successfully in Brazil with the ousting of Dilma, and unsuccessfully (so far) with the failed coup of the National Assembly led by U.S backed Guaido, against Venezuelan President Maduro.

Remember when the Deep State in 2016, in dealing with a probable Trump victory (they were working with real numbers, not the MSM projected model), began to promote CIA officer David Evan McMullin, of the National Clandestine Service unit as the never-Trump Republican ‘Independent candidate’ that the electoral college could be urged to ‘elect’ instead of Trump?

Did this not set the stage for the candidacy of Pete Buttigieg? Isn’t it odd that Biden has announced his candidacy/presidency as merely a transition for CIA agent Pete Buttigieg? How good is Buttigieg’s SHADOW app team at hacking elections? This is an app team made of Google and Apple veterans.

Remember that Clinton and Obama were able to get the CIA to give an illegal briefing to the electoral college electors that Trump was a Russian asset and reminded them of their oath to the constitution, and their right to confer their votes onto another candidate?

But the most telling feature of the Color Revolution is the mobilization of mass publics using opposition party structures, NGO’s, and labor unions. This is the primary factor that distinguishes the Color/Spring strategy from the traditional coup d’état – the spectacle of public support. When we see this factor included, we know we are dealing with a Color Revolution strategy.

And so now, with the inclusion of labor, we can say with high confidence that all tactics of the Color Revolution strategy are being used by some vectors of American power against the executive branch.

We must consistently emphasize the holographic nature of this campaign underway. It cannot create a genuine level of excitement to actually remove Trump by way of an election. But Soros (et al) type NGO’s and labor union staff (not members, but the paid staff) will play dress-up as Amazon workers, nurses etc., and simulate protests. MSNBC, CNN etc. will use carefully cropped footage to create the false sense of mass. Fake news will report that ‘strikes’ (staged protests) consisted of thousands of workers at times and places that had hundreds at most – and again, these would be NGO employees and union staff with some minimally acceptable ‘turnout’, not chiefly workers themselves.

Therefore, when Covid-19 is potentially used as a pretext,

Labor must resist being operationalized for a Google online election

The Color Revolution tactic is potent not because it manufactures discontent per se (though it can), but because it more often uses real existing mass grievances, and weaponizes them for regime change operations. In the case of the US in the emergent phase, it is in trying to use the genuine discontent of everyday Americans, and cynically manipulate this into an ‘electoral victory’ (we say in scare-quotes for reasons to be explained) in the fight for the White House come November.

It may indeed seem strange, even otherworldly, that the hitherto foreign deployed tactic of the Color Revolution would finally be used within the United States by one vector of power against another. This is so immense in its proportion and significance, because it solidifies the reality that there is an actual and open inter-elite conflict within the U.S, with tremendously destabilizing potential outcomes.

We believe this coming election, therefore, will be highly irregular – as it already has been. We have already seen the cancellation of the Democratic primary in the state of New York on the basis of coronavirus. This establishes yet another critical precedent towards coming election irregularities. We may expect ‘online voting’ and more – methods which will make electronic voting kiosks seem as good as traditional paper ballots in comparison. That means we’ll be asked to largely trust Google’s ‘Chrome’ app to provide ‘security’ on the results of that election. Americans must resist this next step in the privatization of the electoral process.

The weaponization of organized labor is fantastically evil for numerous reasons, not least because the DNC as a long-time enemy of working people, will deliver a failure on its promises to labor so absolute that it can only be realized as a betrayal – frustrating legitimate organizing attempts for many years to come.

But just as the high potential of a Deep-State orchestrated irregular election is the opposite of a reason to cancel the election all together, the manipulation of organized labor is not a reason to oppose organized labor. Rather it is a call to eliminate the DNC allied labor bureaucracy, and work towards the legitimate and independent realization of genuine militant labor unions free of that moribund institution rooted in the betrayal of the American worker.

Clinton, the Waltons, and Bezos

The tight relationship between the Waltons, Bezos, and Clinton (or the DNC) should be known, as so much has been written about that subject that any reliable search engine will provide millions of hits.

But what is often under-reported was how the Clinton campaign in 2007 attempted to arrange a yellow union campaign to ‘mobilize’ Walmart workers into a ‘union’ based on the – indeed actual – unfair treatment that Walmart employees face. The aim was to use that organizing campaign to springboard into an issue-based campaign for the ‘fight for $15’, but not actually produce a union. Note – 13 years later, there is still no Walmart worker’s union.

Clinton’s strategy was more successfully used by Obama.

Again, we explain that in the swing states like Colorado, the Obama victory in 2008 was predicated on pseudo labor organizing campaigns that started in the preceding year which, whether successful or not, created an SEIU army to do precinct walking and phone banking for Obama. The big promises made by Obama like EFCA, healthcare for all, and the ‘fight for $15’ were all abandoned as soon as Obama won.

As despicable as all that is, it was perfectly legal and ignoring the entire ugly history of labor’s relationship with the Democrat Party since Truman and Taft-Hartley, not a bad strategy provided that the Democrats would make good on their commitments. In truth, they rarely if ever have.

What we find today is indeed much worse. These organizing campaigns at Amazon and Walmart are being allowed by the directors of Amazon and Walmart themselves – and why? Because they will not produce real unions. The firing of Amazon employees for organizing was a publicity stunt aimed at disguising the ‘yellow union’ nature of these company union endeavors at Amazon and Walmart.

Another publicity stunt that is supposed to lend a sense of reality to the ridiculous, is the resignation of Amazon Vice President Tim Bray. Bray cited the ‘mistreatment of Amazon workers’ and the firing of worker safety and union organizing activists.

We know this is as fake as a three dollar bill because Bray was there all the while as Amazon systematically fired pro-union workers over the years. This is the same dystopic company that Bray helped run that RFID chipped employees to track their bathroom visits and moments of being inert, so as to make sure that Amazon employees never took an unearned breather.

The inauthenticity of this ‘organizing campaign’ plan is clear as day when we consider the particular emphasis placed on the upcoming election. Yes, Amazon employees need a union, but not a fake yellow union co-sponsored by the DNC and Bezos himself.

Layers of color revolution holography

Why would a genuine militant labor movement be so heavily focused, and have its sense of urgency and immediacy, placed around an upcoming election and its immediate aftermath? That is not how labor campaigns are conceived when the goal is to create a union. Yet this is what we are hearing from corrupt labor union insiders like Jane McAlevey.

The reason is because the McAlevey promoted scheme is neither genuine nor militant. Their goal is not to create a real union, but to create a public simulacrum and issue-based campaign that seeks to condemn the Trump administration over health concerns of workers relating to the Coronavirus and ‘opening up’.

Their biggest problem is that Biden hasn’t actually said anything of substance, nor has he proposed anything to the left of what Trump has actually accomplished already. It’s Trump who delivered a moratorium on student loans, Medicare for all for coronavirus treatments, a freeze on certain types of evictions and foreclosures, stimulus payments directly to citizens (so-called ‘one time UBI’).

McAlevey et al view the workers as pawns in some larger scheme, based in some progressivist ideological imperative, far beyond the real needs and dreams of actual American workers. These think-tankers see organizing targets as ‘strategic’ if they mobilize black and women voters – precisely two demographics where either Obama was stronger or where Trump is stronger than Biden. In contrast, the real National Labor Movement will reflect the fact that 78% of the American labor force is white.

Just how connected is Jeff Bezos to the DNC? So much so that Andrew Yang’s proposal of UBI was based around a hard-sell to the US public on the inevitability of Amazon ultimately taking over a large majority of the whole retail market – the only issue at hand was whether Amazon would be taxed somehow to pay for a UBI. But in-fact, it was about directing other tax revenues, such as those from small and medium businesses, as well as remaining larger brick-and-mortar retailers, and re-funneling them back to a UBI model which Amazon can distinctly benefit from.

Incidentally, isn’t it odd that in the midst of this pandemic response in the US, businesses were shut-down but Amazon was considered essential? Bezos’ wealth increased by $25 bln during quarantine, and magically expedited the very same ‘forecast’ made by Andrew Yang’s pitch for UBI.

And this UBI would be entirely in line with Amazon’s strategy to date, who like McDonald’s, relies on their profits ultimately being subsidized by social-net policies, to maintain the semblance of sustainability to their model based on sub-sustenance wages. What we add now is a subsidization for Amazon salaries paid from the taxes on companies who do not require their paid salaries be subsidized.

This gives us yet another damning evidence as to the hyper-real, simulated nature of the present ‘organizing efforts.’ They are merely election ploys that will ultimately undermine real worker’s power at the shop-floor level, and continue to erode public confidence in the aims of labor unions. When people today see SEIU and Teamster (CTW) unions as merely pawns of the DNC and its corporate donor class, they aren’t wrong.

Fifty-five percent of American workers have a favorable view of unions. Labor unions weren’t formed by Democrats nor did they rely on an abstract ‘power analysis’ performed at the level of ivory tower think tanks. Unions were forged in the face of illegality, forcing themselves onto the stage of history. They organized not where it was prescribed by intellectuals, not where it was tactical, and not where it was conveniently timed for a Democrat election. They were organized, christened by bloodshed, and at great human cost. Their militants were shot and hung, lynched by Pinkertons and corrupt police squads. They were not blessed by Amazon executives or schemed by Hillary Clinton, but by the martyrs of Haymarket. The Atlantic-Council/Deep-State press like The New York Times, MSNBC, Vice Magazine, and the Washington Post won’t give the rising National Labor Movement friendly treatment. Its leaders will be called terrorists, the rank-and-file will be called extremists. There will be kidnappings and car-bombings. They will never oppose or attempt to organize small and medium size businesses. That’s how we’ll know the coming National Labor Movement has been born – and what we are seeing from the DNC is certainly not it. But those with an ear to the ground can nevertheless hear the real thing coming.

May 14, 2020 Posted by | Deception, Solidarity and Activism | , , | Leave a comment

Flynn ‘unmasking’ documents show involvement of senior Obama administration officials, including Joe Biden

RT | May 13, 2020

A newly published list of US officials who were interested in National Security Agency (NSA) records on Trump adviser Michael Flynn includes President Barack Obama’s chief of staff, as well as Vice President Joe Biden.

Biden is listed as requesting the unmasking on January 12, 2017, the same day the Washington Post published a story claiming that Flynn had misreported his conversations with Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak, based on leaked NSA information.

Flynn unmasking documents f… by RT America on Scribd

Yet on Tuesday, Biden told ABC’s George Stephanopoulos that he “knew nothing” about the investigation of Flynn, and accused the Trump administration of using the former adviser’s case as a “diversion” from the Covid-19 pandemic.

The unmasking log was provided by the NSA to the Office of the Director of National Intelligence last week, and sent by the Acting Director of National Intelligence (DNI) Richard Grenell to two senators who requested it, Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) and Ron Johnson (R-Wisconsin), who published it on Wednesday.

In addition to Biden, the document shows that then-DNI James Clapper made three unmasking requests about Flynn, CIA Director John Brennan made two, and FBI Director James Comey made one.

Biden’s campaign reacted at first by lashing out against the CBS reporter who published the documents, with his rapid response director Andrew Bates calling Catherine Herridge “a partisan, rightwing hack who is a regular conduit for conservative media manipulation ploys.”

Bates later removed the tweet and issued a follow-up, calling the unmasking perfectly normal behavior by US officials concerned “over intelligence reports of Michael Flynn’s attempts to undermine ongoing American national security policy.”

The documents show Denis McDonough, the White House chief of staff at the time, made an unmasking request on January 5 – the very day Obama met with all the intelligence principals, and a day after FBI agent Peter Strzok intervened to keep the case on Flynn open despite the lack of any “derogatory” evidence. Strzok would later be sent by Comey to interview Flynn and edit the notes of that interview (the “302”) to imply Flynn had lied to him, resulting in the former general’s prosecution by special counsel Robert Mueller.

What the documents also show is that the Obama administration’s interest in what the NSA might have on Flynn began soon after the November 2016 election, with then-US envoy to the UN Samantha Power filing an unmasking request on November 30. She filed six more after that, the last dated January 11, 2017.

Flynn’s conversation with Kislyak about US sanctions against Russia was on December 29, 2016, after Obama suddenly announced the mass expulsion of Russian diplomats and seizure of two diplomatic properties, citing Moscow’s alleged “meddling” in the presidential election.

Evidence that only recently emerged in the Flynn case showed that the leadership of the FBI and the Department of Justice sought to interview him using the pretext of the Logan Act, an 18th-century law which has never been used to prosecute anyone, and did not apply in this instance since Flynn was not a private citizen, but an official of the incoming administration conducting routine business during the presidential transition. This new evidence led the DOJ to announce last week it was dropping all charges against Flynn.

Between the manufactured pretext to go after Flynn and the prior revelation that four FISA warrants used to spy on the Trump campaign via adviser Carter Page had been entirely based on the discredited ‘Steele dossier’, the Trump administration has argued that they were unfairly targeted by its predecessor in what amounted to an illegal coup.

May 14, 2020 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Corruption, Deception | , , , , | 1 Comment

From Overstretch to Collapse

By Daniel Lazare | Strategic Culture Foundation | May 9, 2020

In less than three decades, a mere blink of the eye in historical terms, the United States has gone from the world’s sole superpower to a massive foundering wreck that is helpless before the coronavirus and intent on blaming the rest of the world for its own shortcomings. As the journalist Fintan O’Toole noted recently in the Irish Times :

“Over more than two centuries, the United States has stirred a very wide range of feelings in the rest of the world: love and hatred, fear and hope, envy and contempt, awe and anger. But there is one emotion that has never been directed towards the U.S. until now: pity.”

Quite right. But how and why did this pitiable condition come about? Is it all Donald Trump’s fault as so many now assume? Or did the process begin earlier?

The answer for any serious student of imperial politics is the latter. Indeed, a fascinating email suggests that the tipping point occurred in early to mid-2014, long before Trump set foot in the Oval Office.

Sent from U.S. General Wesley Clark to Philip Breedlove, Clark’s successor as NATO commander in Europe, the email is dated Apr. 12, 2014, and concerns events in the Ukraine that had recently begun spinning out of control. A few weeks earlier, the Obama administration had been on top of the world thanks to a nationalist insurrection in Kiev that had chased out a mildly pro-Russian president named Viktor Yanukovych. Champagne glasses were no doubt clinking in Washington now that the Ukraine was solidly in the western camp. But then everything went awry. First, Vladimir Putin seized control of the Crimean Peninsula, site of an all-important Russian naval base at Sevastopol. Then a pro-Russian insurgency took off in Donetsk and Luhansk, two Russian-speaking provinces in the Ukraine’s far east. Suddenly, the country was coming apart at the seams, and the U.S. didn’t know what to do.

It was at that moment that Clark dashed off his note. Already, he informed Breedlove, “Putin has read U.S. inaction in Georgia and Syria as U.S. ‘weakness.’” But now, thanks to the alarming turn of events in the Ukraine, others were doing the same. As he put it:

“China is watching closely. China will have four aircraft carriers and airspace dominance in the Western Pacific, within 5 years, if current trends continue. And if we let Ukraine slide away, it definitely raises the risks of conflict in the Pacific. For, China will ask would the U.S. then assert itself for Japan, Korea, Taiwan the Philippines the South China Sea?… [I]f Russia takes Ukraine, Belarus will join the Eurasian Union, and, presto, the Soviet Union (in another name) will be back.… Neither the Baltics nor the Balkans will easily resist the political disruptions empowered by a resurgent Russia and what good is a NATO ‘security guarantee’ against internal subversion?…. And then the U.S. will find a much stronger Russia, a crumbling NATO and [a] major challenge in the Western Pacific. Far easier to [hold] the line now in Ukraine than elsewhere later”.

The email speaks volumes about the mentality of those in charge. Conceivably, the Obama administration still had time to turn things around – if, that is, it had shown a bit of flexibility, a willingness to compromise, and a willingness as well to stand up to the ultra-nationalists who had led the anti-Yanukovych upsurge and opposed anything smacking of an even-handed settlement.

But instead it did the opposite. Back in the 1960s, cold warriors had argued that if Vietnam “fell” to the Communists, then Thailand, Burma, and even India would follow suit. But the proposition that Clark now advanced was even more extreme, a super-Domino Theory holding that a minor ethnic uprising in a part of the world that few people in Washington could find on the map was intolerable because it could cause the entire international structure to unravel. NATO, U.S. control of the western Pacific, victory over the Soviets – all would be lost because a few thousand people insisted on speaking their native Russian.

Why such rigidity? The real problem was not so much a confrontation mindset as a phenomenon that the historian Paul Kennedy had identified in the late 1980s: “imperial overstretch.” Like other empires before it, the U.S. had allowed itself to become so over-extended after twenty-five years of “unipolarity” that strategists had their hands full keeping an increasingly rickety structure together. Nerves were on edge, which is why an ethnic uprising that might have been accommodated at an earlier stage of U.S. imperial development was no longer tolerable. Because the rebels had run afoul of U.S. imperial priorities, they constituted a fundamental threat and therefore had to be bulldozed out of the way.

Except for one thing: the structure was so weak that each new bulldoze operation only made matters worse. Insurgents continued to hold their ground in Donetsk and Luhansk thanks to Russian backing while the government grew more and more corrupt and unstable back in Kiev. In the Middle East, the situation was so confused that U.S. allies like Saudi Arabia and Qatar were channeling money and arms to ISIS as it rampaged through eastern Syria and northern Iraq and advanced on Baghdad. Thanks to the turmoil that U.S. policies were unleashing, millions of desperate refugees would soon make their way to Europe where they would spark a powerful nativist reaction that continues to this day. U.S. hegemony was turning into a nightmare.

It was no different in an America shaken by Wahhabist terrorism and dismayed by wars in the Middle East that went nowhere yet never seemed to end. Donald Trump rode a wave of discontent into the White House by promising to “drain the swamp” and bring the troops home. Conceivably, he could have done just that once he was in office – if, that is, he had been serious about downsizing U.S. imperialism and was capable of standing up to the CIA. But the “intelligence community” struck back by launching a classic destabilization campaign based on the theme of Russian collusion while Trump’s foreign-policy ideas turned out to be even more of a mess than Obama’s.

So the collapse intensified, which is why America is now such a helpless giant. A crazy man is at the helm, yet the best Democrats can do is put up a candidate suffering from the early stages of senile dementia, who may be a rapist to boot. No one knows how things will play out from this point on. But two things are clear. One is that the process did not start under Trump, while the other is that it will undoubtedly continue regardless of who wins in November. Once collapse sets in, it’s impossible to stop.

May 9, 2020 Posted by | Timeless or most popular | , , | Leave a comment

The Covid-19 “Manhattan Project” and its Ties to the CIA

By Daniel Espinosa Winder | Dissident Voice | May 2, 2020

On April 27, the Wall Street Journal reported about the creation of a “Manhattan Project” for Covid-19. A “secret group”, consisting in a dozen scientists and a few billionaires, was working “to cull the world’s most promising research on the pandemic” to then advise the White House in the best course of action.

As Rob Copeland wrote for the journal, the group is led by a 33-year-old physician-turned-venture-capitalist named Tom Cahill, a graduate from Duke University with extensive – maybe too extensive – contacts in the business world, as we will explore below. The “lockdown-era Manhattan Project”, as the group describes its own endeavor, is all about “distilling unorthodox ideas” from around the globe. As we can remember, the MP created the atomic bomb during WW II.

Cahill’s “secret group” is already influencing the Trump administration, which is taking advice from its 17-page memo, also made available by the journal. In other example of its influence, by the end of March Dr. Cahill made a phone call to Mike Pence’s aid, Nick Ayers, who managed to accelerate a lucrative FDA permission for Regeneron Pharmaceuticals – working on a potential vaccine for COVID-19 – to move its production to Ireland, where taxes and licenses are more lax.

Other policies included in the memo regard mandatory smartphone apps that will require people to report about their health and potential symptoms to a government agency on a daily basis.

But the brazen pecuniary nature of their enterprise comes to light when the WSJ informs us that the group of scientists working around Cahill – and their billionaire backers:

… has acted as the go-between for pharmaceutical companies looking for a reputable link to Trump administration decision makers. They are working remotely as (an) ad hoc review board for the flood of research on the coronavirus, weeding out flawed studies before they reach policy makers.

In other words, a private filter made of billionaires and scientists – who as we will see, own stock in some very profitable big pharma companies or work for them – is arbitrarily “weeding out” ideas from around the world regarding solutions to the pandemic… in the purported benefit of society?

Some could argue that that very same logic brought us to where we are right now: underfunded healthcare systems collapsed under a pandemic that was foreseen years or even decades in advance. As tens of writers and journalists have outlined in recent weeks around the world, what was needed for an up-to-the-task response to a threat like coronavirus, like stockpiles of specific medical equipment, more hospital beds and health professionals, was not a lucrative enough alternative for the privatized healthcare mercenaries in charge.

As few alternative media commented on the WSJ revelation, Naked Capitalism noted:

In essence, the country would be betting on venture capitalists and private equity specialists to solve the Covid-19 epidemic; oligarchs, in other words. I’m not entirely sure that’s a good bet… private equity is, after all, responsible for a range of social ills, including surprise billing from practices in privatized emergency rooms…

Just two months ago, when the pandemic was starting, Dr. Peter Hotez, from the Center for Vaccine Development at the Texas Children’s Hospital, told the US Congress that in 2016 he and his team of researchers had a vaccine for a strain of coronavirus “ready to go”, but by then, “nobody was interested…”, so they didn’t obtain funding to test it on humans. Hotez, who also stated that his vaccine “may have provided cross-protection from the (present) strain”, says that the SARS epidemic of 2003 and the MERS or camel flu of 2012, should have “triggered major federal and global investments to develop vaccines in anticipation…”

It didn’t. Our good doctor even approached big pharma companies after the recent outbreak regarding his would-be vaccine. He literally got this response from one of them: “Well, we’re holding back to see if this thing comes back year after year…”

Now some big pharma investors, hiding behind their scientists/employees –young Dr. Cahill is presented by the WSJ as an stoic “one suit” living in a “one bedroom rental near Boston’s Fenway Park”– are looking to make a kill among the biggest disaster in recent times, with an economic fallout yet to be seen.

And just as the billionaires behind the “Covid-19 Manhattan Project” are tied to big pharma and some of the most powerful investment trusts in the world, its head, Dr. Tom Cahill, is tied to the CIA’s venture capital, In-Q-Tel.

Cahill, Seventh Sense BioSystems, and the Gates Foundation

As former CIA director George Tenet stated in his memoirs: “… CIA identifies pressing problems, and In-Q-Tel provides the technology to address them. The In-Q-Tel alliance has put the Agency back at the leading edge of technology”. In-Q-Tel is notorious for investing in Keyhole, the technology that later became Google Earth.

As mentioned, Dr. Tom Cahill’s tender age didn’t stop him from developing a list of contacts among billionaire “philanthropists” like the notorious Michael Milken, and elite capitalist ventures like … well, the CIA’s investment fund.

Seventh Sense BioSystems was created in 2008 to develop a blood collection system that would facilitate diagnosis around the world, especially in the underdeveloped world. They designed a small device armed with micro-needles that would be fixed to the upper arm of the patient, drawing blood with a painless tap and storing it.

Dr. Cahill is a member of the board of directors at Seventh Sense. The medical technology start-up obtained money from In-Q-Tel for its very first round of funding ($4.2 million in total; the exact amount coming from the CIA’s front is unknown). Although the donation, made with tax-payer money, isn’t officially secret – the CIA’s venture fund works openly but discreetly –, the reasons why the agency could be interested in the project remain a mystery.

A few years after that, in 2011, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation granted Seven Sense BioSystems over $2 million for its second round of funding. We should note that Novartis, also a Gates Foundation grantee, was tied to the recently incarcerated Michael Cohen, Donald Trump’s lawyer. Novartis, working on a hydroxychloroquine treatment for the virus, paid Cohen more than $1 million for “policy insights” after Trump’s election in 2016. After their relationship was leaked, Novartis apologized. Later, a congressional investigation revealed the real objective of Novartis, the company: “explicitly sought to hire Michael Cohen to provide the company ‘access to key policymakers’ in the Trump administration…”

Dr. Cahill’s access to the White House, on the other hand, is a benefit provided to him by his own powerful godfathers, like Steve Pagliuca, co-owner of the Boston Celtics and co-chairman of Bane Capital – involved in “some of the biggest investments in biotech” since 2016. According to the WSJ, Pagliuca passed on a version of Cahill’s Scientists to Stop Covid-19 memo and policy recommendations to a Goldman Sachs executive, David Solomon, who then handed it to Trump’s Treasure Secretary, Steven Mnuchin.

As the WSJ stated, Pagliuca, along with PayPal’s Peter Thiel, Jim Pallotta – owner of Raptor Capital, also invested in biotechnologies and Big Pharma – and Michael Milken (a “philanthropist” and convicted felon who invented the “junk bonds”) gave Cahill the “legitimacy” to reach the White House “in the middle of the crisis”.

Finally, in an even more unintendedly sarcastic manner, the WSJ piece assures its readers that: “no one in the group stands to gain financially”. Maybe not directly.

An elite club of interconnected billionaire investors

A recent short documentary from The Corbett Report’s, “How Bill Gates Monopolized Global Health”, carefully explains how the Gates Foundation (also) donates millions of dollars to many world renowned media like The Guardian, the BBC, NPR and ABC News, where its dollars fund health related news segments. Its influence in media, the World Health Organization and hundreds of grants for research and development let Gates set the agenda for human health, to the point that is: “almost impossible to find any area of global health that has been left untouched by the tentacles of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation…

“It was Gates who sponsored the meeting that led to the creation of GAVI, the vaccine alliance, a global public-private partnership bringing together state sponsors and big pharmaceutical companies…” as Corbett reports. The openly stated objective of GAVI is to ensure healthy markets (for vaccines and other pharma products).

Government reactions in the US and UK, he adds, were shaped by the advice of two research groups, one from London’s Imperial College and the other from the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (Seattle), both heavily funded by – you guessed it – the Gates Foundation.

Despite dubious disclaimers, the fact is that the handful of billionaires and multimillionaires backing Cahill’s group of Scientists to Stop Covid-19 have important and overlapping investments in biotechnology and pharmaceutical companies, and therefore could be expected to make huge deals out of the present pandemic and the proposed solutions. Jim Pallotta’s Raptor Capital made millions investing in Hospira, a pharmaceutical company bought by Pfizer in 2015. Steve Pagliuca’s Bain Capital Life Sciences also invests in two dozen biotech startups, with special mentions to a couple Pfizer spinouts.

All of the billionaires or multimillionaires mentioned throughout this article seem to deal with the same companies, venture funds and holdings, as if they were part of an elite club of investors. Peter Thiel, through the Founders Fund, invested in Stemcentrx, a company designing cancer treatments with stem cells that was bought by AbbVie, owned in part by the Vanguard Group. The latter also have interests in Pfizer and half a dozen big pharma names that overlap with those receiving “charitable” donations from the Gates Foundation. The Vanguard Group is also one of the top institutional shareholders of Class B shares from Berkshire Hathaway, where Warren Buffett is CEO.

The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation Trust, according to a recent investigation by The Nation, own stock from a dozen well-known names in pharmaceuticals like GSK, Merck, Pfizer or Eli Lilly, while at the same time – and in an open conflict of interests – the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation makes “philanthropic” donations to them.

Most of these firms, including “charities”, holdings and venture funds, have no qualms in dealing with pharmaceuticals and the kind of private companies that make them direly needed in the first place, like Coca-Cola, McDonalds or giants of the oil and agricultural industries, including the producers of glyphosate-carrying concoctions.

The so-called “Covid-19 Manhattan Project” is, in sum, an open door to the White House for an elite club of billionaires aiming at enlarging their already extravagant business portfolio at the expense of a catastrophic emergency. Far from new, it follows the same neoliberal logic that brought us to this point, putting in the hands of the superwealthy 0.01 % the future of health in the United States and the world just like another business opportunity.

As Joachim Hagopian once wrote for Global Research:

This is neither a new nor unique story. In fact, the story of big pharma is the exact same story of how big government, big oil, big agro-chem giants like Monsanto have come to power. The controlling shareholders of all these major industries are one and the same.

Daniel Espinosa Winder lives in Arequipa, second largest city of Peru. He graduated in Communication Sciences in Lima and started researching propaganda and mainstream media. He writes for a peruvian in print weekly, “Hildebrandt en sus trece” since 2018. His writings are a critique of the role of mass media in society”.

May 2, 2020 Posted by | Corruption | , , | Leave a comment

How It All Began: The Belgrade Embassy Bombing

By Peter Lee | China Matters | May 24, 2015

When I was in Beijing during the protests in 1989, a middle-aged man came up to me and asked, “Couldn’t America send some B-52s here and…” and he made a swooping motion with his hand.

Ten years later, on May 7, 1999, the American bombers did show up.

Instead of showering freedom ordnance on China’s dictators, however, they dropped five bombs on the Chinese embassy in Belgrade.

As to why this happened, the United States has always declared it was an accident.

A lot of people in China believe otherwise and there is a good amount of evidence to support their view.

The bombing of the embassy was a wake-up call for the PRC leadership, which decided it urgently needed a doctrine and capabilities beyond its strategic nuclear deterrent to handle disagreements with the United States that might acquire a military dimension.

It was also a propaganda godsend for the regime.

Chinese demonstrators were back on the streets, but protesting against the United States instead of against the PRC regime’s deficiencies in Western democratic values.

Americans and the U.S. media had a hard time getting used to this unfavorable turn in some popular Chinese attitudes away from 1989 democracy-love, blaming the ill-feeling on the suppression of news of President Clinton’s apology.

In the July 2001 China Journal, Peter Hays Gries of Ohio State University analyzed letters and submissions to China’s Guangming Daily and characterized the protests as “genuine and understandable” and largely unrelated to unawareness of the presidential apology.

On the ten-year anniversary of the bombing, China Digital Times linked to an interview with a student who identified the bombing as the trigger for a sea-change in the worldview of at least some Chinese:

What do you believe has changed now in the attitude of young Chinese (like those who protested 10 years ago against the USA) towards America?

Over the past decade, I think the young Chinese have gradually dropped their illusion of the U.S. and begun to view it more objectively.

After reform and opening-up, to be more specific in the 1980s and 1990s, the Chinese people began to know more about the outside world. The prosperity of the west attracted the young people so much that all of a sudden everybody wanted to go abroad. At that time, we had a popular saying, “Moon of the west is even more beautiful than that of China.” Experiencing the sharp contrast between China and the west, many Chinese people became critical of China, perhaps in a cynical way.

However, when the Chinese embassy was bombed, many people began to think: is this the kind of democracy and human rights that we want to pursue?

Post Iraq-war, it is difficult to remember the years when the United States effortlessly claimed the moral high ground. But in 1999, I remember that I also discounted Chinese whinging about the Belgrade embassy accident.

Writing in 2001, Gries provides a reminder:

The demonstrations shocked the US media, which quickly pointed blame at the Chinese government for inflaming the protests. A brief review of major US newspaper editorials of 11 May reveals a consensus view: the Chinese people were not genuinely angry with (innocent) America; they were, rather, manipulated by Communist propaganda that the bombing was intentional… The Washington Post declared: “The Big Lie is alive and well in Beijing”… Such “state-supervised anger”, the Boston Globe declared, was neither genuine nor popular. The “brutes in Beijing” were responsible for the Chinese people’s mistaken belief that the bombing was intentional.

A contentious interview conducted by Jim Lehrer with the Chinese ambassador to the US, Li Zhaoxing, immediately subsequent to the attack, is enlightening for the cognitive dissonance provoked by Li’s refusal to share Lehrer’s confidence that the US would publicly and honestly sort out what was obviously just a regrettable goof. Looking back at the interview through the perspective provided by the shameless mendacity of the Bush administration over the Iraq War, it is Lehrer and not Li who looks delusional and out of touch.

LI ZHAOXING: I’m saying that the Chinese people and the Chinese government are requesting a thorough investigation of the NATO missile attack on our embassy in Yugoslavia.

JIM LEHRER: Yes, sir. But my question is: why would you think that it would not be an accident or a mistake? In other words, why would you think– to repeat my question, why would you think that the United States would intentionally kill Chinese citizens in downtown Belgrade?

LI ZHAOXING: Ask your own people. Ask your own officials. Ask your own experts. If they ask themselves, seriously, honestly, do they really believe that this is simply a kind of mistake?

JIM LEHRER: Are you suggesting that that is not the intention of the United States, to do exactly what you– in other words, to conduct a full investigation and hold the people responsible for this?

LI ZHAOXING: We attach more to facts, rather than words. No matter how eloquent one could be.

In addition to his encounter with Jim Lehrer, Li Zhaoxing received further instruction on American attitudes from another, less courtly source.

Gries passes on a report in the Washington Post in which Tom DeLay, the Republican whip in the House of Representatives, revealed to Li his own formula for managing US-PRC relations, one that did not depend on apologies:

I was on Meet the Press… right after the bombing of the Chinese Embassy in Kosovo [he meant Belgrade], and the [Chinese] ambassador was on before me. And if you remember, he’s kind of an obnoxious fellow and he’s screaming and yelling about how bad the Americans were, and I had had it up to about here. So he’s coming off the stage and I’m going onto the stage and I intentionally walked up to him and blocked his way… I grabbed [his] hand and squeezed it as hard as I could and pulled him a kind of little jerk like this and I said: “Don’t take the weakness of this president as the weakness of the American people.” And he looked at me kind of funny, so I pulled him real close, nose to nose, and I repeated it very slowly, and said, “Do-not-take-the-weakness-of this president as the weakness of the American people.”

I expect Li Zhaoxing recalled Mr. DeLay’s solicitude as well as Jim Lehrer’s amazed disbelief when he returned to Beijing to become China’s Minister of Foreign Affairs.

A tentative answer to Jim Lehrer’s query as to why the United States might take the dastardly step of bombing the Chinese embassy can be found in my articles from early 2007 on the Belgrade incident: the persistent rumor that attack was conducted to destroy wreckage of a US stealth fighter shot down over Serbia, which the Milosevic government had delivered to the PRC in gratitude for services rendered (or perhaps traded to the PRC in return for presumably safe and secure radio retransmission facilities from inside the Belgrade embassy for the Serbian military, whose communications network was a focus of NATO strikes).

The story that China might have acquired key Stealth technology from the crash in Yugoslavia acquired a lot of legs after China test-flew its first stealth fighter, the J20, in January 2011, as I wrote in Asia Times.

During the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) campaign against Serbia in 1999, an American F-117A stealth fighter was shot down. Some wreckage undoubtedly made it into Chinese hands. Slobodan Lekic and Dusan Stojanovic of the Associated Press (AP) reported on January 23:

“At the time, our intelligence reports told of Chinese agents crisscrossing the region where the F-117 disintegrated, buying up parts of the plane from local farmers,” says Admiral Davor Domazet-Loso, Croatia’s military chief of staff during the Kosovo war.

“We believe the Chinese used those materials to gain an insight into secret stealth technologies … and to reverse-engineer them,” Domazet-Loso said in a telephone interview.

A senior Serbian military official confirmed that pieces of the wreckage were removed by souvenir collectors, and that some ended up “in the hands of foreign military attaches”. [2]

The idea that the United States had not taken adequate steps to secure the F-117A wreckage and useful technology may have thereby found its way into enemy hands is apparently rather irksome to the Pentagon.

Elizabeth Bumiller transmitted the US official pushback in the January 26 New York Times article titled “US Doubts ’99 Jet Debris Gave China Stealth Edge”:

[I]t’s hard to imagine that a great deal of applicable and useful information could have been culled from the site,” said an Air Force official, who asked for anonymity because he was not authorized to speak publicly about military intelligence. [3]

Interestingly and perhaps not surprisingly, even as this narrative of PRC military espionage cum trashpicking was advanced, I didn’t see anybody pursue the logical corollary: that acknowledgment that China had possessed Stealth wreckage buttressed the allegation that the US government might have bombed the Chinese embassy in Belgrade in order to destroy the sensitive technology.

In reading my dissection of the Belgrade bombing, its myths and legends, the reader can draw his own conclusions about the context it provides for subsequent US-PRC confrontations and strategies and the attendant media hoopla.

A final prefatory note:

One element that contemporary readers might find hard to swallow is my assertion that the mission that destroyed the Chinese embassy was the only target selected by the CIA.

Well, that’s what George Tenet, Director of the CIA, said. It is a mystery to me why he considered this revelation in any way exculpatory.

From the July 23, 1999 New York Times :

“It was the only target we nominated,” the director, George Tenet, said at a rare public hearing of the House Intelligence Committee.

After the strike on May 7, which killed three Chinese and wounded at least 20 others, the CIA decided it better go back to its usual business of spying, a U.S. official said Thursday. Reeling from its error, the agency almost immediately suspended other preparations it was making to forward additional targets to help NATO.

The Bombing of the Chinese Embassy in Belgrade in 1999

China’s first direct experience with satellite-guided munitions occurred on the night of May 7, 1999, when at least five GPS-guided JDAM bombs slammed into the Chinese embassy in Belgrade, killing three Chinese nationals and wounding 20.


The JDAM used in the attack is a very successful and relatively inexpensive concept in ordnance by which dumb bombs are, as it were, sent to college, and equipped with a GPS-corrected guidance system that generates corrective adjustments to movable vanes after the bomb is dropped from a plane, enabling reported accuracy of within 13 meters.

The conventional, though implausible, narrative at the time of the embassy bombing was The Bomb was Smart… But We Goofed!

In testimony before Congress in July 1999, George Tenet explained how they meant to bomb some logistics office of the Yugoslavian army, they used an outdated map, somebody did catch the error but the message didn’t get through, the system broke down, sooooooo sorry.

On October 17, 1999, the Sunday Observer, in cooperation with a Danish paper, Politiken, came out with what would seem to be a blockbuster report: that the United States had deliberately targeted the embassy in order to remove a key rebroadcast station directing the military activities of Slobodan Milosevic’s forces in their struggle to resist NATO forces.

I am embarrassed to admit that my Googling skills haven’t turned up a direct link to the article, but the Observer’s sister publication, the Guardian, ran a story summarizing the article’s conclusions.

As to why the Chinese government dared to take the provocative step of hosting a Yugoslavian military radio facility, the article speculates that Beijing cooperated with Belgrade in order to acquire data on U.S. military capabilities:

Why the Chinese were prepared to help Milosevic is a more murky question. One possible explanation is that the Chinese lack Stealth technology, and the Yugoslavs, having shot down a Stealth fighter in the early days of the air campaign, were in a good position to trade. The Chinese may have calculated that Nato would not dare strike its embassy, but the five-storey building was emptied every night of personnel. Only three people died in the attack, two of whom were, reportedly, not journalists – the official Chinese version – but intelligence officers.

The Chinese military attache, Ven Bo Koy, who was seriously wounded in the attack and is now in hospital in China, told Dusan Janjic, the respected president of Forum for Ethnic Relations in Belgrade, only hours before the attack, that the embassy was monitoring incoming cruise missiles in order to develop counter-measures.

According to the Observer, the behind the scenes U.S. attitude to the embassy bombing was: Mission Accomplished.

British, Canadian and French air targeteers rounded on an American colonel on the morning of May 8. Angrily they denounced the “cock-up”. The US colonel was relaxed. “Bullshit,” he replied to the complaints. “That was great targeting … we put three JDAMs down into the (military] attache’s office and took out the exact room we wanted …

This story died the death in the U.S. media (I only saw references to it in the English papers at the time) and, to its everlasting credit, FAIR (Fairness and Accuracy In Reporting) took the matter up.

In an October 22, 1999 article, FAIR wrote:

So far, the reaction in the mainstream U.S. media has been a deafening silence. To date, none of America’s three major network evening news programs has mentioned the Observer’s findings. Neither has the New York Times or USA Today, even though the story was covered by AP, Reuters and other major wires. The Washington Post relegated the story to a 90-word news brief in its “World Briefing” (10/18/99), under the headline “NATO Denies Story on Embassy Bombing.”By contrast, the story appeared in England not only in the Observer and its sister paper, the Guardian (10/17/99), but also in their leading rival, the Times of London, which ran a follow-up article on the official reaction the next day (10/18/99). The Globe and Mail, Canada’s most prestigious paper, ran the full Reuters account prominently in its international section (10/18/99). So did the Times of India, the Sydney Morning Herald and the Irish Times (all 10/18/99). The prominent Danish daily Politiken, which collaborated with the Observer on the investigation, was on strike, but ran the story on its website.

FAIR and its supporters rattled a few media cages, and got dismissive replies from the New York Times and USA Today.

The Times’ Andrew Rosenthal characterized the Observer article as “not terribly well sourced”.

In its rebuttal, FAIR stated:

FAIR contacted journalists at both the Observer and Politiken. According to the Observer’s U.S. correspondent, Ed Vulliamy, its foreign editor, Peter Beaumont, and Politiken reporter Jens Holsoe, their sources included the following:

–A European NATO military officer serving in an operational capacity at the four-star level – a source at the highest possible level within NATO–confirmed three things: (1) That NATO targeted the Chinese embassy deliberately; (2) That the embassy was emitting Yugoslav military radio signals; and (3) That the target was not approved through the normal NATO channels but through a second, “American-only” track.

–A European NATO staff officer at the two-star level in the Defense Intelligence office confirmed the same story.–

Two U.S. sources: A very high-ranking former senior American intelligence official connected to the Balkans – “about as high as you can get,” according to one reporter — confirmed that the embassy was deliberately targeted. A mid-ranking current U.S. military official, also connected to the Balkans, confirmed elements of the story and pointedly refused to deny that the embassy had been bombed deliberately.

–A NATO flight controller based in Naples and a NATO intelligence officer monitoring Yugoslav radio broadcasts from Macedonia each confirmed that NATO’s signals intelligence located Yugoslav military radio signals coming from the Chinese embassy in Belgrade. When they informed their superiors, they were told that the matter would be handled further up in the chain of command. Two weeks later, the embassy was bombed.

–An official at the U.S. National Imagery and Mapping Agency told the reporters that NATO’s official explanation, which involves a faulty map of Belgrade, is a “damned lie.”

Finally, the Times, still coasting on its Pentagon Papers reputation in those halcyon, pre-Judy Miller days, replied to one correspondent:

“There is nothing in the distinguished history of the Times — where reporters have risked their lives, been threatened with jail and indeed gone to jail to protect the public’s right to know things the government does not want to get out — to suggest that we would withhold such a story.”

Hmmm.


When weighing the credibility of the Observer report, it is also worth recalling that, by CIA Director Tenet’s own admission, of the 900 targets struck during the Kosovo war, the CIA was responsible for only one targeting package—the bombing that was ostensibly meant to take out an insignificant Yugoslavian paper-shuffling operation and ended up destroying the Chinese embassy’s intelligence directorate instead.

Another investigative report confirmed that, not only was the target selected by the CIA, the entire mission was flown by the United States outside of standard NATO channels (NATO, of course, was the vehicle for European and American intervention in the Kosovo conflict; it was not a U.S.-directed war).

This is not my day for coming up with direct links to original reporting, but I found a posting on Venik’s Aviation of what looks like an accurate transcription of a May 2000 article from Air Forces Monthly, a European publication, detailing the mission.

It delivers the goods on what actually struck the Chinese embassy (not “guided missiles” or “laser guided munitions” as other outlets reported):

In the early hours of May 7, 1999, a USAF B-2 Spirit bomber, escorted by EA-6B defence suppression aircraft and F-15C fighters, dropped three GPS-guided Joint Defence Air Munition (JDAM) bombs on the Chinese Embassy in the Novi Beograd district of Belgrade.

As to how the targeting “error” slipped by NATO:

It should be noted that, in an interview with the author, NATO spokesman Lee McClenny confirmed that the targeting information did not go through JTF NOBLE ANVIL, or any other NATO structure, in contrast to Tennet’s [sic] official public statements. Instead, the co-ordinates were passed directly from the CIA to Whiteman Air Force Base, the home of the 509th Bomb Wing, where it was programmed into the JDAMs. Mr McClenny asserted that the entire process had remained ‘Stateside’, hence the failure of NATO staff to ‘scrub’ the target to check its accuracy, authenticity and location.

When asked, the CIA again asserted that the story given by Tennet [sic] to the House Committee was true, but claimed that the targeting information went from the CIA to the Pentagon to be processed. The Pentagon was only prepared to say that “some of the F-117 and B-2 missions were used as ‘national assets’ and therefore did not pass through NATO command structures”, despite the requirement under the NATO charter to clear all missions carried out under NATO auspices with the NATO general council…

We can now bring some more recent, first-hand information to the mix.

China’s Ambassador to Yugoslavia at the time, Pan Zhanlin, has written a Chinese-language memoir entitled My Encounter with War .…

Living in Belgrade during the NATO bombing campaign, Ambassador Pan became something of an expert on precision-bombing tactics, and he reports on the effect of the five bombs in detail:

The first bomb entered the side of the building at an angle near the roof and tore through to the first floor and detonated at a bottom corner at the dormitory, tearing a pit several meters deep. One of the fatalities and many of the injuries occurred here. The second bomb hit the middle of the roof and went through to the first floor auditorium, causing no fatalities but giving Ambassador Zhan food for thought by incinerating his office and melting the frame of his day bed. The third bomb hit the northwest corner and blasted through several floors, killing two people. The fourth bomb came in a window of the half basement, exploded, destroyed the embassy clubhouse and shattered the building’s structural members. The fifth bomb crashed through the roof of the ambassador’s villa. Fortunately for Ambassador Zhan, who was there at the time, it didn’t explode. Since B2s drop their bombs in even numbers to keep the plane balanced, there was speculation that perhaps a sixth bomb had also entered the basement; but it was never found.


I leave it to structural engineers and ordnance enthusiasts to assess whether this damage is consistent with an assault of five JDAMs meant to destroy the entire embassy; a surgical strike to take out the military attache’s office; or the aftermath of a dud-studded fiasco.


Ambassador Pan is anxious to characterize the American attack as intentional and motivated by pure cussedness: to break the back of the Milosevic regime by demonstrating to its allies that diplomatic support was not only useless but positively dangerous.

He carefully if awkwardly debunks the scenarios that the embassy was bombed because Milosevic was sheltering or visiting there, or that it was rebroadcasting Yugoslav military communications.

No reference is made to any electronic intelligence activities by China that might have provoked the strike.

Concerning the shootdown of the F117, Pan reports that the scuttlebutt in diplomatic circles was that the plane was located using the Czech Tamara anti-stealth system. His informants told him it couldn’t detect the Stealth aircraft, but that the passage of the plane through sensor coverage left a distinctive “hole” in the CRT display. The Yugoslavs noticed this anomaly and used it to unleash a barrage of 30 SAM missiles at the place where they guessed that the fighter would be, bringing it down.


There is a third possibility, in addition to the rebroadcast and Elint scenarios: the F-117 wreckage story.

And it has a radically different outcome.

The Chinese Internet is rife with urban legends concerning the Belgrade strike. Nobody regards it as accidental, and many Chinese seem willing to ascribe all sorts of shenanigans to the Chinese embassy that provoked the attack.

The most interesting scenario is one that the poster attributes to “a private encounter with a Chinese naval officer who was slightly tipsy”.

According to this informant, the Yugoslavian government had recovered the wreckage of the shot-down F-117 and sold key pieces of it to China. The navigation system, fuselage fragments with the Stealth coating, and high temperature nozzle components of the engine were spirited into the basement of the Chinese embassy. Unfortunately, there was a locator beacon inside the INU powered by a battery and, before the Chinese could discover and disable it, the U.S. military was alerted to the location of the F-117 fragments.

In this version of the story, at least, there is a happy ending for the Chinese. The U.S. attacked the embassy with a laser-guided bomb meant to penetrate to the basement and destroy the embassy and the F-117 prize, but it didn’t explode!

The wreckage made it to China (in the special plane Beijing dispatched to carry home the survivors and the bodies of the victims of the attack, according to other accounts).

In the reported words of the officer (“who spoke with tears in his eyes”):

“Although some of our people sacrificed their lives, we gained no less than ten years in the development of our Stealth materials. We purchased this progress with our blood and international mortification.”

“虽然我们有人牺牲了,但是我们隐型材料的研制进度一下提高了十年都不止,这种进步,是以血和国际上的屈辱换来的”–他流泪

This is an interesting story.

In certain respects—the laser-guided part and the basement stash—it conflicts with more credible reports.

The embassy’s sub-basement, which served as an all purpose cafeteria, recreation center, and bomb shelter—an unlikely hidey hole for F-117 parts–was hit once, possibly twice, and it seems unlikely that anything could have been recovered from there.

But conspiracy theorists can draw solace from Ambassador Pan’s description of the four cases of “important state materials” that two brave embassy workers ran up to the fifth floor of the burning embassy to extract. Pan stated:

他们知道,这东西比生命更重要

“They knew these materials were more important than life.”

Standard-issue cypher equipment and secret files?

Special Elint monitoring equipment?

Or the crown jewels of America’s Stealth program?

I lean toward the third explanation, because glomming onto some secret airplane parts and then sneaking them out of a burning building is the kind of low tech triumph that fits in with my sense of China’s capabilities and interests inside Yugoslavia at the time.

The United States may have felt that by purchasing the wreckage, China had crossed the line from diplomatic support for Milosevic and conventional military-attache espionage to a more overt intelligence alliance with Yugoslavia in a deeply sensitive area of U.S. military technology, and needed to be taught a lesson.

I also wish to explore a pyschological element, which perhaps affects China’s outlook to this day.

You can see hints of it in the F 117 in the basement story. It has a touching, almost child-like wish-fulfillment element: the evil empire destroyed our embassy but we escaped with the plans to the Death Star!

The embassy bombing was quite traumatic to China.

However, when the attack occurred, triggering official and popular anger within China, the West was disbelieving, dismissive—and defensive.

It was considered rather churlish of the Chinese to intrude their crude and manufactured nationalistic outrage into our “good war” narrative of the Kosovo conflict by trying to make political capital out of our honest mistake.

Today, with further information on the attack and the benefit of perspective, it is difficult to dismiss the shock the Belgrade bombing inflicted on the Chinese.

Post 9/11, Ambassador Pan’s description of the attack is depressing familiar, and more difficult to disregard.

Pan’s plodding prose reawakens dark memories of our own as he conveys the shock and fear as the embassy explodes into flames, “the loudest sound I ever heard”. Survivors found the stairwells blocked by rubble and fire and desperately improvised escapes down the exterior of the building using knotted drapes. Pan saw his friends and colleagues stagger from the ruins of the embassy dazed and bloody, crying out for help.

Amid the chaos everybody ducked in fear of a follow-up attack as NATO bombers thundered overhead (May 7 was one of the busiest nights for aerial bombing). Then came the frantic ad hoc attempts to rally the survivors, account for the living, and search for the missing.

First responders were at first unable to enter the compound because the electric gate was disabled when the bombing cut the power; ambulances race up to the shattered structure with sirens howling to rush away the injured willy-nilly; embassy staffers mounted a frantic search through the local hospitals for the injured.

Finally, there was the extraction of the dead, consoling of the wounded; the grieving; and the defiant patriotic oration.

Again viewed through a post-9/11 lens, Pan’s account also paints a picture of a privileged elite that has been stripped of the illusion that it is immune to attack, and realizing with anger, shame, and disgust that at that moment it is helpless, vulnerable, and unable to retaliate.

Regardless of U.S. motives for bombing the Belgrade embassy or what treasures of military intelligence the Chinese were able to save from the wreckage, if anything was needed to focus Chinese attention on its vulnerability to US attack, getting its embassy, intelligence directorate, and military attache blown up in Belgrade probably did it.

/plee/why-china-hates-satellite-guided-munitions-part-1-the-bombing-of-the-chinese-embassy-in-belgrade-in-1999/

Wednesday, January 31, 2007

The Belgrade Bombing, the F-117 Cake, and the Tears of Premier Zhu Rongji

In a previous post I explored the possibility that the U.S. bombing of the Chinese embassy in Belgrade in 1999 was intentional, with at least the partial objective of destroying wreckage of an F-117A Night Hawk Stealth fighter that Yugoslavia had shot down a few weeks previously.

I am indebted to Dr. Jeffrey Lewis for forwarding some news reports in which the fate of the wreck is discussed.

In 2001 (Fulghum & Wall, Russia Admits Testing F-117 Lost in Yugoslavia, Aviation Week & Space Technology, October 8, 2001), the Russian government acknowledged they had obtained access to F 117A wreckage and stated they used it primarily to improve the anti-Stealth performance of their anti-aircraft missiles.

In the hearsay department, an article in the September 27, 1999 issue of Aviation Week and Space Technology (ed. Bruce D. Nordwall, Earthly Remains) reported, “a Russian official said that some parts had made their way to Moscow, but that the bulk of the airframe was shipped to China.”, a claim that “Pentagon analysts” dismissed “because “China… doesn’t have the industrial capability to benefit from either the design or the systems.”

Contra the Pentagon analysts, simply because China’s Stealth programs were in their infancy at the time doesn’t mean that in 1999 China would not yearn for such a cool and potentially useful trophy as fragments of an American Stealth fighter.

As is now known, Yugoslavians did not turn the entire wreck over to the Russians.

Portions are on display in the Yugoslav Museum of Aviation today and I came across an unconfirmed traveler’s tale that tourists can even purchase souvenir fragments at the museum.

As to what could have been divvied up with the Chinese, the advanced targeting, sensor, and communications systems that the Russians were purportedly interested in neatly dovetail with the reported Chinese take of INU, engine nozzle, and fuselage chunks.

It certainly is plausible that the Yugoslavian government would seek to extract as much propaganda, financial, military, and geopolitical advantage as possible from the F-117A carcass, selling the biggest piece to the Russian Federation but also sharing a few juicy scraps with the PRC, the junior partner in the de facto anti-NATO alliance.

As to whether or not the United States would deem it necessary or desirable to bomb the Chinese embassy to flinders in order to destroy the F-117A wreckage, the Clinton administration suffered a certain amount of criticism for not bombing the wreckage in the wheat field where the plane had fallen in order to deny it to other unfriendly parties.

Analyzing the experiences of the Kosovo conflict, RAND opined:

Heated arguments arose in Washington and elsewhere in the immediate aftermath of the shootdown over whether USEUCOM had erred in not aggressively having sought to destroy the wreckage of the downed F 117 in order to keep its valuable stealth technology out of unfriendly hands and eliminate its propaganda value…Said a former commander of Tactical Air Command…”I’m surprised we didn’t bomb it because the standard operating procedure has always been that when you lose something of real or perceived value—in this case, real technology, stealth—you destroy it.”…Reports indicated that military officials had at first considered destroying the wreckage but opted in the end not to follow through with the attempt because they could not have located it quickly enough to attack it before it was surrounded by civilians and the media.

It’s also interesting to note that the stated reason for not ordering an attack on the crash site was that it was overrun not only with Yugoslavian military types but also local rubberneckers and international journalists.

Instead of obliterating a white, Western audience the Clinton administration might have turned to a measure it had employed in the past, after the USS Cole bombing, when it faced criticism for being insufficiently martial and excessively dilatory: knocking down a Third World asset, in this case the Chinese embassy instead of a Sudanese pharmaceutical plant.

Maybe the U.S. honestly believed that there was some top secret stuff in the Chinese embassy, or maybe the Clinton administration was eager to forestall G.O.P. criticism of its handling of the F-117A shootdown and decided to respond with a showy if meaningless foray against an adversary that was proving somewhat nettlesome, but was chosen because it was vulnerable and unlikely to retaliate.

As an object lesson in the perils of military and geopolitical weakness, the Chinese probably paid some attention to the fact that somehow it was their embassy, and not that of Serbian ally Numero Uno and Most Plausible and Afterwards Officially Certified F-117 Wreckage Holder, a.k.a. the Russian Federation, that got bombed.

For whatever reason—scientific countermeasures, espionage, or design flaws–it transpired that the F-117 was not as stealthy as the United States had consistently professed. In the aftermath of the Kosovo conflict, the Yugoslavians contended that its radar signature was only reduced by 50%. Chinese scuttlebutt claimed that the United States withdrew F-117s from South Korea because it was believed they could not effectively evade Chinese detection measures.

In any case, the Air Force is doing its best to consign the F-117 to the boneyard before the service life it originally promised to the U.S. Congress for this aircraft has expired, and replace it with the F22A Raptor.

My intention is not to evangelize the idea that there was F-117 wreckage in the basement of the Chinese embassy. Somebody in China knows what was really in the embassy, and I suppose one of these days they’ll go public and we’ll find out.

As the F-117 and its secrets fade into oblivion, what is worthy of further mulling over is the role that the Belgrade bombing seems to play as the creation myth of the birth of the 21st Chinese strategic military doctrine, founded on the assumption that the U.S. will unscrupulously use its military, diplomatic, and propaganda advantages not only to contain China but even to attack it when need, desire, and circumstances permit.

In this context, the Belgrade embassy is holy ground, and there are as many versions of the Truth as there are books in the Bible.

The recollections of China’s ambassador Pan Zhanlin, imbue a certain incident after the bombing with a heroic and close to mythic character.

The two comrades in charge of the embassy’s important assets were Little Wang and Little Zheng. One slept in the duty office on the fifth floor, one slept in the dormitory on the fourth floor. Little Wang pierced through the dust and smoke and by the light of the flames descended from the fifth floor to the fourth floor. At this time, Little Zheng emerged from the bedroom. Little Wang grabbed hold of Little Zheng and ran back upstairs. Little Zheng had already been injured and his face was flecked with blood. People who ran into them urgently asked: “Why are you going back up?” Little Wang replied: “There is something that needs doing. This is our job.” They picked up four cases of national important assets and battled through smoke and pierced through flames to get downstairs. The stairwell was cut off, they stumbled down to the third floor. Ahead of time, the embassy had made various preparations for an emergency, so these four cases of important things had already been prepared. If any untoward event had occurred, they could be picked up and moved immediately. They knew, these things were more important than life.

负责使馆重要资财的两位同志,小王和小郑,一个睡在五层的值班室,一个睡在四层的宿舍。小王透过烟尘,借助火光,从 五楼下到四楼。这时,小郑正从寝室出来。小王一把拉住小郑往楼上跑。小郑已经受伤,脸上淌着血。有人这时遇到他们,急忙问:“你们为什么还往上跑?”小王 回答说:“有事,咱们是干这一行的。”他们从五层拿起四箱国家重要资财,冒烟突火往下走。楼梯被阻断,他们跌跌撞撞地来到三楼。使馆事先做了各种应急准 备,这四箱重要的东西事先已准备好。一旦发生意外情况,可以拿起来立即转移。他们知道,这东西比生命更重要。


The active imagination of the reader is left to fill in the blanks.

On the Chinese Internet, there has been considerable speculation as to the nature of the intelligence coup that could have provoked the U.S. bombing.

In addition to F-117A parts, there are assertions that the Chinese embassy also had a Tomahawk cruise missile in the basement.

Some posters claim that the only piece of U.S. hardware that China was able to extract and ship back to Beijing was a dud JDAM dropped during the attack—a scenario that Pan contemptuously dismisses, and which seems completely unlikely given the wartime chaos surrounding the attack.

There was a dud JDAM, but it took a lengthy, delicate, and expensive excavation process in 2004 to extract it from where it had buried itself deep beneath the Chinese embassy.

There are darker versions, which imply the only harvest China reaped from the Yugoslavian war was a planeful of corpses.

The story is that at the onset of the Kosovo conflict, a thirty or so Chinese radar and materials specialists boarded an unmarked 737 plane to assist the Yugoslavian government in using multi-location radar to detect Stealth aircraft. After the F-117A was shot down, the U.S. government learned that China was supposed to receive F-117A wreckage for study and ordered the attack. After the embassy bombing a similar, unmarked plane returned to China and discharged its cargo of coffins. Depending on the poster, the airport at which this melancholy scene was acted out was either at Lanzhou or at Beijing’s Nanyuan military airport.
….

Global Views, a Chinese magazine, posted an interesting article (Global Views website hopeless; article posted on a Chinese bulletin board; written in 2006 according to internal evidence) containing interviews with several of the Yugoslavian officers involved in the shootdown, which confirms and amplifies the story that NATO Commander Wesley Clark was told.

1960s tube amplifier enthusiasts will be thrilled to learn that the Yugoslavian air force attributes the shootdown of the F117A to P-12 type vacuum tube-technology Russian radars so old the U.S. considered them obsolete.

According to their account, the F117A Stealth fighter was detectable by antique radar operating at wavelengths of 2 meters—a detail that had supposedly escaped the Stealth designers, who operated on the assumption that the plane would only have to be invisible to modern centimeter and millimeter wavelength radars.

On the evening of March 27, Yugoslavia’s anti-aircraft defenses detected an aircraft entering Yugoslavian airspace at a distance of 80 km. The radar was immediately shut off, since U.S. planes were armed with radar seeking missiles that would fire automatically within 20 seconds and track the signal to its source and destroy it. The Yugoslavian anti-aircraft crews had been rigorously trained to either acquire and fire on a target or turn off their radio within this 20-second window. The radar was switched on when the target was about 15 km away and a barrage of SA-2 SAM missiles were fired manually. The F117A fell to earth. Witnesses said, “It looked like a sparrow shot from the sky.”

The shootdown raised an important tactical and strategic issue for NATO. Bad weather had limited helicopter operations and the U.S. was relying on high-altitude bombing to advance its war objectives. Therefore, a great deal of attention was paid to identifying and disabling Yugoslavia’s anti-aircraft facilities.

The Global Vision article reports that the headquarters of the 126 Mid-Air Detection and Anti-Aircraft Battalion—which had detected the plane—was attacked 11 times, each time with 5 JDAM bombs. The 250th Battalion—which fired the offending SAMs–was attacked 22 times.

The Yugoslav asserts that the 3rd Brigade of the 250th Battalion, whose missiles actually brought down the plane, suffered no fatalities or casualties during the war, leading them to brag: “We’re the real Stealth”.

The F-117A shootdown provided a psychological boost to the Yugoslavs which lives on to this day.

Every year on March 27 the 250th Battalion, now part of the Serbian Air Force, holds a raucous party. The main event occurs when a large cake bedecked with candles is rolled out. On the top is a rendering of an F-117A Nighthawk in chocolate. At precisely 8:42 pm, the exact time of the shootdown, the first slice is cut—through the port wing, which is the one severed by the SAM barrage.


On the other hand, the U.S. was dismayed by the loss of its aircraft.

The RAND report states:

[The downing] meant not merely the loss of a key U.S. combat aircraft but the dimming of the F-117’s former aura of invincibility, which for years had been of incalculable psychological value to the United States.

For psychologists, anthropologists, and sociologists as well as political scientists, I think a fruitful field would be the study of compensatory psychological mechanisms of weaker countries that have endured American military attack.

As I’ve noted above, we don’t know if the Chinese were able to extract any intelligence treasures from the embassy, or even if the embassy was actually attacked on purpose, for that matter.

What we do know is that the embassy attack excited fears of anger and impotence within the Chinese elite, because they could not prevent or deter the attack, defend against the attack, or retaliate after the attack.

On the psychological level, the Chinese coped with the bombing both by venting their outrage and by fixating on theories that China was able to claim a victory by extracting something of enormous value—F 117-A parts, a Tomahawk missile, a JDAM—that mitigated the blow and “saved China ten years” in its military development.

The Shenyang poster writes:

Upon learning the this genuine picture, I believe that the U.S. attack on our embassy came from the fact that China’s accurate reporting of the Yugoslavia war provoked America to anger and retribution. At the very least we can say that China’s strength really was incapable of hindering America’s risky move. Now we know, and it causes us to appreciate even more profoundly that a nation, when it is poor and weak, is without recourse and pitiful (How helpless and evoking bitterness in people’s hearts were the tears of Premier Zhu Rongji as he wept at the airfield when the remains of the martyrs were transported back to China).

在 知道这个真相之前我只是认为美国轰炸我们使馆是处于中国对南战的真实报道激怒了美国而招致其报复,那至少说明了我们中国实力真的没到可以阻击美国冒险的地 步,现在知道了,然而使我更深刻的领会到一个国家在批贫弱时的命运是多么的无奈与悲哀(株容基总理在烈士遗体运回国内的机场上的眼泪是多么的无奈与令人心 酸)!

I might add that Zhu Rongji, while not a hard-case sociopath like some members of the CCP leadership, is no cupcake. As Premier he projected a tough git’er done persona that would make an emotional expression like crying at the airport a memorable and significant image.

On a more practical level… well, I’ll let the Shenyang poster describe the consequences for military planners—and military contractors—both in China and the United States.

Detailing a litany of high-tech armaments from fighters to cruisers to nuclear submarines funded with a RMB 50 billion allocation, he concludes:

Afterwards we learned that after the bombing China engaged in deep reflection and understood reality more clearly… all of these [developments] transmit this single message to the world—China yearns to be strong and great!

后来我知道了在那次事件之后中国从心底进行了反思,对现实的认识更清楚了……,都象世界传达了这样一个消息--中国渴望强大!

http://chinamatters.blogspot.com/2007/01/belgrade-bombing-f-117-cake-and-tears.html

April 23, 2020 Posted by | Deception, Timeless or most popular, War Crimes | , , , | Leave a comment

American Pravda: Our Coronavirus Catastrophe as Biowarfare Blowback?

By Ron Unz • Unz Review • April 21, 2020

Nearly 30,000 Americans have died from the coronavirus during the last two weeks, and by some estimates this is a substantial under-count, while the death-toll continues to rapidly mount. Meanwhile, measures to control the spread of this deadly infection have already cost 22 million Americans their jobs, an unprecedented economic collapse that has pushed our unemployment rates to Great Depression levels. Our country is facing a crisis as grave as almost any in our national history.

For many weeks President Trump and his political allies had regularly dismissed or minimized this terrible health threat, and suddenly now faced with such a manifest disaster, they have naturally begun seeking other culprits to blame.

The obvious choice is China, where the global outbreak first began in late 2019. Over the last week or two our media has been increasingly filled with accusations that the dishonesty and incompetence of the Chinese government played a major role in producing our own health catastrophe.

Even more serious charges are also being raised, with senior government officials informing the media that they suspect that the Covid-19 virus was developed in a Chinese laboratory in Wuhan and then carelessly released upon a vulnerable world. Such “conspiracy theories” were once confined to the extreme political fringe of the Internet, but they are now found in the respectable pages of my morning New York Times and Wall Street Journal.

Whether plausible or not, such accusations carry the gravest international implications, and there are growing demands that China financially compensate our country for its trillions of dollars in economic losses. A new global Cold War along both political and economic lines may rapidly be approaching.

I have no personal expertise in biowarfare technology, nor access to the secret American intelligence reports that seem to have been taken seriously by our most elite national newspapers. But I do think that a careful exploration of previous Sino-American clashes over the last couple of decades may provide some useful insight into the relative credibility of those two governments as well as that of our own media.

During the late 1990s, America seemed to reach the peak of its global power and prosperity, basking in the aftermath of its historic victory in the long Cold War, while ordinary Americans greatly benefited from the record-long economic expansion of that decade. A huge Tech Boom was at its height, and Islamic terrorism seemed a vague and distant thing, almost entirely confined to Hollywood movies. With the collapse of the Soviet Union, the possibility of large scale war seemed to have dissipated so political leaders boasted of the “peace dividend” that citizens were starting to enjoy as our huge military forces, built up over nearly a half-century, were downsized amid sweeping cuts in the bloated defense budget. America was finally returning to a regular peacetime economy, with the benefits apparent to the everyone.

At the time, I was overwhelmingly focused on domestic political issues, so I only paid slight attention to our one small military operation of those years, the 1999 NATO air war against Serbia, intended to safeguard the Kosovar Muslims from ethnic cleansing and massacre, a Clinton Administration project that I fully endorsed.

Although our limited bombing campaign seemed quite successful and soon forced the Serbs to the bargaining table, the short war did include one very embarrassing episode. The use of old maps had led to a targeting error that caused one of our smart bombs to accidentally strike the Chinese Embassy in Belgrade, killing three members of its delegation and wounding dozens more. The Chinese were outraged by this incident, and their propaganda organs began claiming that the attack had been deliberate, a reckless accusation that obviously made no logical sense.

In those days I watched the PBS Newshour every night, and was I shocked to see their U.S. Ambassador raise those absurd charges with host Jim Lehrer, whose disbelief matched my own. But when I considered that the Chinese government was still stubbornly denying the reality of its massacre of the protesting students in Tiananmen Square a decade earlier, I concluded that unreasonable behavior by PRC officials was only to be expected. Indeed, there was even some speculation that China was cynically milking the unfortunate accident for domestic reasons, hoping to ignite the sort of jingoist anti-Americanism among the Chinese people that would finally help bind the social wounds of that 1989 outrage.

Such at least were my thoughts on that matter more than two decades ago. But in the years that followed, my understanding of the world and of many pivotal events of modern history underwent the sweeping transformations that I have described in my American Pravda series. And some of my 1990s assumptions were among them.

Consider, for example, the Tiananmen Square Massacre, which every June 6th still evokes an annual wave of harsh condemnations in the news and opinion pages of our leading national newspapers. I had never originally doubted those facts, but a year or two ago I happened to come across a short article by journalist Jay Matthews entitled “The Myth of Tiananmen” that completely upended that apparent reality.

According to Matthews the infamous massacre had likely never happened, but was merely a media artifact produced by confused Western reporters and dishonest propaganda, a mistaken belief that had quickly become embedded in our standard media storyline, endlessly repeated by so many ignorant journalists that they all eventually believed it to be true. Instead, as near as could be determined, the protesting students had all left Tiananmen Square peacefully, just as the Chinese government had always maintained. Indeed, leading newspapers such as the New York Times and the Washington Post had occasionally acknowledged these facts over the years, but usually buried those scanty admissions so deep in their stories that few ever noticed. Meanwhile, the bulk of the mainstream media had fallen for an apparent hoax.

Matthews himself had been the Beijing Bureau Chief of the Washington Post, personally covering the protests at the time, and his article appeared in the Columbia Journalism Review, our most prestigious venue for media criticism. This authoritative analysis containing such explosive conclusions was first published in 1998, and I find it difficult to believe that many reporters or editors covering China have remained ignorant of the truth, yet the impact has been absolutely nil. For over twenty years virtually every mainstream media account I have read has continued to promote the Tiananmen Square Massacre Hoax, usually implicitly but sometimes explicitly.

Even more remarkable were the discoveries I made regarding our supposedly accidental bombing of the Chinese Embassy in 1999. Not long after launching this website, I added former Asia Times contributor Peter Lee as a columnist, incorporating his China Matters blogsite archives that stretched back for a decade. He soon published a 7,000 word article on the Belgrade Embassy bombing, representing a compilation of material already contained in a half-dozen previous pieces he’d written on that subject from 2007 onward. To my considerable surprise, he provided a great deal of persuasive evidence that the American attack on the Chinese embassy had indeed been deliberate, just as China had always claimed.

According to Lee, Beijing had allowed its embassy to be used as a site for secure radio transmission facilities by the Serbian military, whose own communications network was a primary target of NATO airstrikes. Meanwhile, Serbian air defenses had shot down an advanced American F-117A fighter, whose top-secret stealth technology was a crucial U.S. military secret. Portions of that enormously valuable wreckage were carefully gathered by the grateful Serbs, who delivered it to the Chinese for temporary storage at their embassy prior to transport back home. This vital technological acquisition later allowed China to deploy its own J20 stealth fighter in early 2011, many years sooner than American military analysts had believed possible.

Based upon this analysis, Lee argued that the Chinese embassy was attacked in order to destroy the Serbian retransmission facilities located there, while punishing the Chinese for allowing such use. There were also widespread rumors in China that another motive had been an unsuccessful attempt to destroy the stealth debris contained there. Later Congressional testimony revealed that the among all the hundreds of NATO airstrikes, the attack on the Chinese embassy was the only one directly ordered by the CIA, a highly-suspicious detail.

I was only slightly familiar with Lee’s work, and under normal circumstances I would have been very cautious in accepting his remarkable claims against the contrary position universally held by all our own elite media outlets. But other sources he cited completely shifted that balance.

Although the American media dominates the English-language world, many British publications also possess a strong global reputation, and since they are often much less in thrall to our own national security state, they have sometimes covered important stories that were ignored here. And in this case, the Sunday Observer published a remarkable expose in October 1999, citing several NATO military and intelligence sources who fully confirmed the deliberate nature of the American bombing of the Chinese embassy, with a US colonel even reportedly boasting that their smartbomb had hit the exact room intended.

This important story was immediately summarized in the Guardian, a sister publication, and also covered by the rival Times of London and many of the world’s other most prestigious publications, but encountered an absolute wall of silence in our own country. Such a bizarre divergence on a story of global strategic importance—a deliberate and deadly US attack against Chinese diplomatic territory—drew the attention of FAIR, a leading American media watchdog group, which published an initial critique and a subsequent follow-up. These two pieces totaled some 3,000 words, and effectively summarized both the overwhelming evidence of the facts and also the heavy international coverage, while reporting the weak excuses made by top American editors to explain their continuing silence. Based upon these articles, I consider the matter settled.

Few Americans remember our 1999 attack upon the Chinese embassy in Belgrade, and if not for the annual waving of a bloody June 6th flag by our ignorant and disingenuous media, the “Tiananmen Square Massacre” would also have long since faded from memory. Neither of these events has much direct importance today, at least for our own citizens. But the broader media implications of these examples do seem quite significant.

These incidents represented two of the most serious flashpoints between the Chinese and American governments during the last thirty-odd years. In both cases the claims of the Chinese government were entirely correct, although they were denied by our own top political leaders and dismissed or ridiculed by virtually our entire mainstream media. Moreover, within a few months or a year the true facts became known to many journalists, even being reported in fully respectable venues. But that reality was still completely ignored and suppressed for decades, so that today almost no American whose information comes from our regular media would even be aware of it. Indeed, since many younger journalists draw their knowledge of the world from these same elite media sources, I suspect that many of them have never learned what their predecessors knew but dared not mention.

Most leading Chinese media outlets are owned or controlled by the Chinese government, and they tend to broadly follow the government line. Leading American media outlets have a corporate ownership structure and often boast of their fierce independence; but on many crucial matters, I think the actual reality is not so very different from that in China.

I tend to doubt that the Chinese leadership has any overwhelming commitment to the truth, and the reasons for their greater veracity are probably practical ones. American news and entertainment completely dominate the global media landscape and they face no significant domestic rival. So China recognizes that it is vastly outmatched in any propaganda conflict, and so as the far weaker party must necessarily try to stick closer to the truth, lest its lies be immediately exposed. Meanwhile, America’s overwhelming control over information may lead to considerable hubris, with the government sometimes promoting the most outrageous and ridiculous falsehoods in the confident belief that a supportive American media will cover for any mistakes.

These considerations should be kept in mind as we attempt to sift the accounts of our often unreliable and dishonest media to extract the true circumstances of the current global coronavirus epidemic. Unlike careful historical analysis, we are working in real-time with our analysis greatly hindered by the ongoing fog of war, so that any conclusions are necessarily very preliminary ones. But given the high stakes, the attempt should be made.

When my morning newspapers first began mentioning the appearance of a mysterious new illness in China during mid-January, I paid little attention, absorbed as I was in the aftermath of our sudden assassination of Iran’s top military leader and the dangerous possibility of a yet another Middle Eastern war. But the reports persisted and grew, with deaths occurring and evidence growing that the viral disease could be transmitted between humans. China seemed unsuccessful in its initial efforts to halt the spread of the disease using convention methods.

Then on Jan. 23rd and after only 17 deaths, the Chinese government took the astonishing step of locking down and quarantining the entire 11 million inhabitants of the city of Wuhan, a story that drew worldwide attention. They soon extended this policy to the 60 million Chinese of Hubei province, and not longer afterward shut down their entire national economy and confined 700 million Chinese to their homes, a public health measure probably a thousand times larger than anything previously undertaken in human history. So either China’s leadership had suddenly gone insane, or they regarded this new virus as an absolutely deadly national threat, which they must take all possible steps to control.

Given these dramatic Chinese actions and the international headlines that they generated, the current accusations by Trump Administration officials that China had attempted to minimize or conceal the serious nature of the disease outbreak is so ludicrous as to defy rationality. In any event, the record shows that on December 31st, the Chinese had already alerted the World Health Organization about the strange new illness, and Chinese scientists published the entire genome of the virus on Jan. 12th, allowing diagnostic tests to be produced worldwide.

Unlike other nations, China had had no advance warning of the nature or existence of the deadly new disease, and therefore faced unique obstacles. But their government implemented public health control measures unprecedented in the history of the world and managed to almost completely eradicate the disease with merely the loss of a few thousand lives. Meanwhile, many other Western countries such as the US, Italy, Spain, France, and Britain dawdled for months and ignored the potential threat, consequently now suffering well over 100,000 dead, with the numbers still rapidly mounting. For any of these nations or their media to criticize China for its ineffectiveness or slow response represents an absolute inversion of reality.

Some governments took full advantage of the early warning and scientific information provided by China. Although nearby East Asian nations such as South Korea, Japan, Taiwan, and Singapore had been at greatest risk and were among the first infected, their competent and energetic responses allowed them to almost completely avoid any major outbreak, and they have suffered minimal fatalities. But America and several European countries largely ignored adopting these same early measures such as widespread testing, quarantine, and contact-tracing, and have paid a terrible price for their insouciance.

A few weeks ago British Prime Minister Boris Johnson boldly declared that his own coronavirus plan for Britain was based upon rapidly achieving “herd immunity”—essentially encouraging the bulk of his citizens to become infected—then quickly backed away after his desperate advisors recognized that the result might entail a million or more British deaths.

By any reasonable measure, the response to this global health crisis by China and most East Asian countries has been absolutely exemplary, while that of many Western countries has been equally disastrous. Maintaining reasonable public health has been a basic requirement of functional governments since the days of the city-states of Sumeria, and the sheer and total incompetence of our own government and those of many of its European vassals has been breathtaking. If the Western media attempts to pretend otherwise, it will permanently forfeit whatever remaining international credibility it still possesses.

I do not think these particular facts are much disputed except among the most blinkered partisans, and the Trump Administration probably recognizes the hopelessness of arguing otherwise. This probably explains their recent shift towards a far more explosive and controversial narrative, namely claiming Covid-19 may have been the product of Chinese research into deadly viruses at a Wuhan laboratory, thereby suggesting that the blood of hundreds of thousands or millions of victims around the world will be on Chinese hands. Dramatic accusations backed by overwhelming international media power may deeply resonate across the globe.

News reports appearing in the Wall Street Journal and the New York Times are reasonably consistent, and cite senior Trump Administration officials pointing to the Wuhan Institute of Virology, a leading Chinese biolab, as the possible source of the infection, with the deadly virus having been accidentally released and then spreading first throughout China and later worldwide. Trump himself has publicly voiced similar suspicions, as did Secretary of State and former CIA Director Mike Pompeo in a FoxNews interview. Private lawsuits against China in the multi-trillion-dollar range have already been filed by rightwing activists and Republican senators Tom Cotton and Lindsey Graham have raised similar governmental demands.

I obviously have no personal access to the classified intelligence reports that have been the basis of these charges by Trump, Pompeo, and other top administration officials. But in reading these recent news accounts, I noticed something rather odd.

Back in January, few Americans were paying much attention to the early reports of a disease outbreak in the Chinese city of Wuhan, which was hardly a household name. Instead, overwhelming political attention was focused upon the battle over Trump’s impeachment and on the aftermath of our dangerous military confrontation with Iran. But towards the end of that month, I discovered that the fringes of the Internet were awash with claims that the disease was caused by a Chinese bioweapon accidentally released from that same Wuhan laboratory, with former Trump advisor Steve Bannon and ZeroHedge, a popular right-wing conspiracy-website, playing leading roles in backing the theory. Indeed, the stories became so widespread in those ideological circles that Sen. Tom Cotton, a leading Neocon, began promoting them on Twitter and FoxNews, thereby provoking an article in the NYT on those “fringe conspiracy theories.”

I suspect that it may be more than purely coincidental that the biowarfare theories which erupted in such concerted fashion on political websites and Social Media accounts back in January so closely match those now publicly advocated by top Trump Administration officials and supposedly based upon our most secure intelligence sources. Perhaps a few intrepid citizen-activists managed to replicate the findings of our multi-billion-dollar intelligence apparatus, and did so in days while the latter required weeks or months. But a more likely scenario is that the wave of January speculation was driven by private leaks and “guidance” provided by exactly the same elements that today are very publicly leveling similar charges in the elite media. Initially promoting controversial theories in less mainstream sources is supposedly a fairly standard intelligence practice.

Regardless of the origins of the idea, does it seem plausible that the coronavirus outbreak might have originated as an accidental leak from that Chinese laboratory? I am not privy to the security procedures of Chinese government facilities, but applying a little common sense may shed some light on that question.

Although the coronavirus is only moderately lethal, apparently having a fatality rate of 1% or less, it is extremely contagious, including during an extended pre-symptomatic period and also among asymptomatic carriers. Thus, portions of the US and Europe are now suffering heavy casualties, while the means taken to control the spread has devastated their national economies. Although the virus is not likely to kill more than a small sliver of the population, we have seen to our dismay how a major outbreak can easily wreck our entire economic life.

During January, the journalists reporting on China’s mushrooming health crisis regularly emphasized that the mysterious new viral outbreak had occurred at the worst possible place and time, in the major transport hub of Wuhan just prior to the Lunar New Year holiday, when hundreds of millions of Chinese usually travel to their homes for the celebration, thereby potentially spreading the disease to all parts of the country and producing a permanent, uncontrollable epidemic. The Chinese government avoided that grim fate by the unprecedented decision to shut down the entire national economy and confine 700 million Chinese to their homes for many weeks. But the outcome seems to have been a very near thing, and if Wuhan had remained open for just a few days longer, China might easily have suffered long-term economic and social devastation.

The timing of an accidental laboratory release would obviously be entirely random. Yet the outbreak seems to have begun during the precise period of time most likely to damage China, the worst possible ten-day or perhaps thirty-day window. As I noted in January, there seemed no solid evidence that the coronavirus was a bioweapon, but if it were, the timing of the release seemed very unlikely to have been accidental.

If the virus was released intentionally, the context and motive for such a biowarfare attack against China could not be more obvious. Although our disingenuous media continues to pretend otherwise, China’s economy surpassed our own in size several years ago, and has continued to grow much more rapidly. Chinese companies have also taken the lead in several crucial technologies, with Huawei becoming the world’s leading telecommunications equipment manufacturer and dominating the important 5G market. And China’s sweeping Belt and Road Initiative has threatened to reorient global trade around an interconnected Eurasian landmass, greatly diminishing the leverage of America’s own control over the seas. I have closely followed China for over forty years, and these trend-lines had never been more apparent. Back in 2012, I published an article bearing the provocative title “China’s Rise, America’s Fall?” and I have seen no reason to reassess my verdict.

China’s Rise, America’s Fall

Which superpower is more threatened by its “extractive elites”?

The American Conservative, April 17, 2012 • 7,000 Words

For three generations following the end of World War II, America had stood as the world’s supreme economic and technological power, while the collapse of the Soviet Union thirty years ago left us as the world’s sole remaining superpower, with no conceivable military challenger. A growing sense that we were rapidly losing that unchallenged position had certainly inspired the anti-China rhetoric of many senior figures in the Trump Administration, and sparking the major trade war that they launched soon after coming into office. The increasing misery and growing impoverishment of large sections of the American population naturally left these voters searching for a convenient scapegoat, and the prosperous, rising Chinese made a perfect target.

Despite America’s growing economic conflict with China over the last couple of years, I had never considered the possibility that matters might take a military turn. The Chinese had long ago deployed advanced intermediate range missiles that many believed could easily sink our carriers in the region, and they had also generally improved their conventional military deterrent. Moreover, China was on quite good terms with Russia, which itself had been the target of intense American hostility for several years; and Russia’s new suite of revolutionary hypersonic missiles had drastically reduced any American strategic advantage. Thus, a conventional war against China seemed an absolutely hopeless undertaking, while China’s outstanding businessmen and engineers were steadily gaining ground against America’s decaying and heavily-financialized economic system.

Under these difficult circumstances, an American biowarfare attack against China might have seemed the only remaining card to play in hopes of maintaining American supremacy. Plausible deniability would minimize the risk of any direct Chinese retaliation, and if successful, the terrible blow to China’s economy would set it back for many years, perhaps even destabilizing the social and political system. Using alternative media to immediately promote theories that the coronavirus outbreak was the result of a leak from a Chinese biowarfare lab was a natural means of preempting any later Chinese accusations along similar lines, thereby winning the international propaganda war for America before China had even begun to play.

A decision by elements of our national security establishment to wage biological warfare in hopes of maintaining American world power would certainly have been an extremely reckless act, but extreme recklessness had become a consistent American pattern since 2001, especially under the Trump Administration. Just a year earlier we had kidnapped the daughter of Huawei’s founder and chairman, who also served as CFO and ranked as one of China’s most top executives, while at the beginning of January we suddenly assassinated Iran’s top military leader.

These were the thoughts that came to mind during the last week of January once I discovered the widely circulating theories suggesting that China’s massive disease epidemic had been the self-inflicted consequence of its own biowarfare research. I saw no solid evidence that the coronavirus was a bioweapon, but if it were, there seemed an overwhelming likelihood that China was the innocent victim of the attack, presumably carried out by elements of the American national security establishment.

At that point, someone brought to my attention a very long article by an American ex-pat living in China who called himself “Metallicman” and held a wide range of eccentric and implausible beliefs. I have long recognized that flawed individuals can often serve as the vessels of important information otherwise unavailable, and this case constituted a perfect example of that. His piece denounced the outbreak as a likely American biowarfare attack, and provided a great wealth of factual material I had not previously considered. Since he authorized republication elsewhere I did so, and by the end of January his 15,000 word analysis, although somewhat raw and unpolished, was attracting an enormous amount of readership on our website, probably being one of the very first English-language pieces to suggest that the mysterious new disease was an American bioweapon. Many of his arguments appeared doubtful to me or have been obviated by later developments, but several seemed quite telling.

He pointed out that during the previous two years, the Chinese economy had already suffered serious blows from other mysterious new diseases, although these had targeted farm animals rather than people. During 2018 a new Avian Flu virus had swept the country, destroying large portions of China’s poultry industry, and during 2019 the Swine Flu viral epidemic had devastated China’s pig farms, destroying 40% of the nation’s primary domestic source of meat, with widespread claims that the latter disease was being spread by small drones. My morning newspapers had hardly ignored these important business stories, noting that the sudden destruction of China’s domestic food sources might constitute a huge boon to American farm exports at the height of our trade conflict, but I had never considered the obvious implications. So for three years in a row, China had been severely impacted by strange new viral diseases, though only the most recent had been deadly to humans. Although this evidence was merely circumstantial, the pattern seemed highly suspicious.

The writer also noted that shortly before the coronavirus outbreak in Wuhan, that city had hosted 300 visiting American military officers, there to participate in the 2019 Military World Games, an absolutely remarkable coincidence of timing. As I pointed out at the time, how would Americans react if 300 Chinese military officers had paid an extended visit to Chicago, and soon afterward a mysterious and deadly epidemic had suddenly broken out in that city? Once again, the evidence was merely circumstantial but certainly raised dark suspicions.

Scientific investigation of the coronavirus had already pointed to its origins in a bat virus, leading to widespread media speculation that bats sold as food in the Wuhan open markets had been the original disease vector. Meanwhile, the orchestrated waves of anti-China accusations had emphasized Chinese laboratory research on that same viral source. But we soon published a lengthy article by investigative journalist Whitney Webb providing copious evidence of America’s own enormous biowarfare research efforts, which had similarly focused for years on bat viruses. Webb was then associated with MintPress News, but that publication had strangely declined to publish her important piece, perhaps skittish about the grave suspicions it directed towards the US government on so momentous an issue. So without the benefit of our platform, her major contribution to the public debate might have attracted relatively little readership.

Around the same time, I noted another extremely strange coincidence that seemed to attract no interest from our somnolent national media. Although his name had meant nothing to me, in late January my morning newspapers carried major stories on the sudden arrest of Prof. Charles Lieber, one of Harvard University’s top scientists and Chairman of its Chemistry Department, sometimes characterized as a potential future Nobel Laureate.

The circumstances of that case seemed utterly bizarre to me. Like numerous other prominent American academics, Lieber had had decades of close research ties with China, holding joint appointments and receiving substantial funding for his work. But now he was accused of financial reporting violations in the disclosure portions of his government grant applications—the most obscure sort of offense—and on the basis of those accusations, he was seized by the FBI in an early-morning raid on his Cambridge home and dragged off in shackles, potentially facing decades of federal imprisonment.

Such government action against an academic seemed almost without precedent. During the height of the Cold War, numerous American scientists and technicians were rightfully accused of having stolen our nuclear weapons secrets for delivery to Stalin, yet I had never heard of any of them treated in such a manner, let alone a scholar of Prof. Lieber’s stature, who was merely charged with technical disclosure violations. Indeed, his treatment recalled accounts of NKVD raids during the Soviet purges of the 1930s.

Although Lieber was described as a chemistry professor, a few seconds of Googling revealed that some of his most important work had been in virology, including technology for the detection of viruses. So a massive and deadly new viral epidemic had broken out in China and almost simultaneously, a top American scholar with close Chinese ties and expertise in viruses was suddenly arrested by the federal government, yet no one in the media expresses any curiosity at a possible connection between these two events.

I think we can safely assume that Lieber’s arrest by the FBI had been prompted by the coronavirus epidemic, but anything more is mere speculation. Those now accusing China of having created the coronavirus might surely suggest that our intelligence agencies discovered that the Harvard professor had been personally involved with that deadly research. But I think a far more likely possibility is that Lieber began to wonder whether the epidemic in China might not be the result of an American biowarfare attack, and was perhaps a little too free in voicing his suspicions, thereby drawing the wrath of our national security establishment. Inflicting such extremely harsh treatment upon a top Harvard scientist would greatly intimidate all of his lesser colleagues elsewhere, who would surely now think twice before broaching certain possible theories to any journalists.

By the end of January, our webzine had published seven articles and columns on the coronavirus outbreak, totaling tens of thousands of words, and probably established itself as the primary English-language source for a particular perspective on the deadly epidemic, with our coverage eventually attracting many hundreds of thousands of pageviews. A few weeks later, the Chinese government began gingerly raising the possibility that the coronavirus may have been brought to Wuhan by the 300 American military officers visiting that city, and was fiercely attacked by the Trump Administration for spreading anti-American propaganda. But I strongly suspect that the Chinese had gotten that idea from our own publication.

As the coronavirus gradually began to spread outside China’s own borders, another development occurred that greatly multiplied my suspicions. Most of these early cases had occurred exactly where one might expect, among the East Asian countries bordering China. But by late February Iran had become the second epicenter of the global outbreak. Even more surprisingly, its political elites had been especially hard-hit, with a full 10% of the entire Iranian parliament soon infected and at least a dozen of its officials and politicians, some of them quite senior, soon dying of the disease. Indeed, Neocon activists on Twitter began boasting that their hatred Iranian enemies were now dropping like flies.

Let us consider the implications of this. Across the entire world the only political elites that have yet suffered any significant human losses have been the Iranians, and they died at a very early stage, before significant outbreaks had even occurred almost anywhere else in the world outside China. Thus, we have America assassinating Iran’s top military commander on Jan. 2nd and then just a few weeks later large portions of the Iran’s ruling elites became infected by a mysterious and deadly new virus, with many of them soon dying as a consequence. Could any rational individual possibly regard this as a mere coincidence?

Biological warfare is a highly technical subject, and those possessing such expertise are unlikely to candidly report their classified research activities in the pages of our major newspapers, perhaps even less so after Prof. Lieber was dragged off to prison in chains. My own knowledge is nil. But in mid-March I came across several extremely long and detailed comments on the coronavirus outbreak that had been posted on a small website by an individual calling himself “OldMicrobiologist” and who claimed to be a retired forty-year veteran of American biodefense. The style and details of his material struck me as quite credible, and after a little further investigation I concluded that there was a high likelihood that his background was exactly as he had described. I made arrangements to republish his comments in the form of a 3,400 word article, which soon attracted a great deal of traffic and 80,000 words of further comments.

Although the writer said that he had absolutely no proof, he said that his experience led him to strongly suspect that the coronavirus outbreak was indeed an American biowarfare attack against China, probably carried out by agents brought into that country under cover of the Military Games held at Wuhan in late October, the sort of sabotage operation our intelligence agencies had sometimes undertaken elsewhere. One important point he emphasized was that high lethality was often counter-productive in a bioweapon since debilitating or hospitalizing large numbers of individuals may impose far greater economic costs on a country than a biological agent which simply inflicts an equal number of deaths. In his words “a high communicability, low lethality disease is perfect for ruining an economy,” suggesting that the apparent characteristics of the coronavirus were close to optimal in this regard. Those so interested should read his analysis and assess for themselves his credibility and persuasiveness.

Was coronavirus a Biowarfare Attack Against China?

OldMicrobiologist • March 13, 2020 • 3,400 Words

One intriguing aspect of the situation was that almost from the first moment that reports of the strange new epidemic in China reached the international media, a large and orchestrated campaign had been launched on numerous websites and Social Media to identify the cause as a Chinese bioweapon carelessly released in its own country. Meanwhile, the far more plausible hypothesis that China was the victim rather than the perpetrator had received virtually no organized support anywhere, and only began to take shape as I gradually located and republished relevant material usually drawn from very obscure sources and often anonymously authored. So it seemed that only one side was waging an active information war, and that side was not China’s. The nearly simultaneous launch of such a major propaganda campaign may not necessarily demonstrate that an actual biowarfare attack had occurred, but I think it tends to support such a notion.

When considering the hypothesis of an American biowarfare attack, certain natural objections come to mind. The major drawback to biological warfare has always been the obvious fact that the self-replicating agents employed are not prone to respect national borders, raising the serious risk that the disease might eventually return to the land of its origin and inflict substantial casualties. For this reason, it seems quite doubtful that any rational and half-competent American leadership would have unleashed the coronavirus against China.

But as we absolutely see demonstrated in our daily news headlines, America’s current government is grotesquely and manifestly incompetent, more incompetent than one could almost possibly imagine, with tens of thousands of Americans having now already paid with their lives for such extreme incompetence. Rationality and competence are obviously nowhere to be found among the Deep State Neocons that President Donald Trump has appointed to so many crucial positions throughout our national security apparatus.

Moreover, the extremely lackadaisical notion that a massive coronavirus outbreak in China would never spread back to America might have seemed plausible to individuals who carelessly assumed that past historical analogies would exactly apply. As I wrote a few weeks ago:

Reasonable people have suggested that if the coronavirus was a bioweapon deployed by elements of the American national security apparatus against China (and Iran), it’s difficult to imagine why the they didn’t assume it would naturally leak back in the US and start a huge pandemic here, as is currently happening.

The most obvious answer is that they were stupid and incompetent, but here’s another point to consider…

In late 2002 there was the outbreak of SARS in China, a related virus but that was far more deadly and somewhat different in other characteristics. The virus killed hundreds of Chinese and spread into a few other countries before it was controlled and stamped out. The impact on the US and Europe was negligible, with just a small scattering of cases and only a death or two.

So if American biowarfare analysts were considering a coronavirus attack against China, isn’t it quite possible they would have said to themselves that since SARS never significantly leaked back into the US or Europe, we’d similarly remain insulated from the coronavirus? Obviously, such an analysis was foolish and mistaken, but would it have seemed so implausible at the time?

As some must have surely noticed, I have deliberately avoided investigating any of the scientific details of the coronavirus. In principle, an objective and accurate analysis of the characteristics and structure of the virus might help suggest whether it was entirely natural or rather the product of a research laboratory, and in the latter case, possibly indicating whether the source was China, America, or some third country.

But we are dealing with a cataclysmic world event and those questions obviously have enormous political ramifications, so the entire subject is shrouded by a thick fog of complex propaganda, with numerous conflicting claims being advanced by interested parties. I have no background in microbiology let alone biological warfare, so I would be hopelessly adrift in evaluating such conflicting scientific and technical claims. I suspect that this is equally true of the overwhelming majority of other observers as well, though committed partisans are loathe to admit that fact, and will eagerly seize upon any scientific argument that supports their preferred position while rejecting those that contradict it.

Therefore, by necessity, my own focus is on evidence that can at least be understood by every layman, if not necessarily always accepted. And I believe that the simple juxtaposition of several recent disclosures in the mainstream media leads to a rather telling conclusion.

For obvious reasons, the Trump Administration has become very eager to emphasize the early missteps and delays in the Chinese reaction to the viral outbreak in Wuhan, and has presumably encouraged our media outlets to focus on this topic.

As an example of this, the Associated Press Investigative Unit recently published a rather detailed analysis of those early events purportedly based upon confidential Chinese documents. Provocatively entitled “China Didn’t Warn Public of Likely Pandemic for 6 Key Days”, the piece was widely distributed, running in abridged form in the NYT and elsewhere. According to this reconstruction, the Chinese government first became aware of the seriousness of this public health crisis on Jan. 14th, but delayed taking any major action until Jan. 20th, a period of time during which the number of infections greatly multiplied.

Last month, a team of five WSJ reporters produced a very detailed and thorough 4,400 word analysis of the same period, and the NYT has published a helpful timeline of those early events as well. Although there may be some differences of emphasis or minor disagreements, all these American media sources agree that Chinese officials first became aware of the serious viral outbreak in Wuhan in early to mid-January, with the first known death occurring on Jan. 11th, and finally implemented major new public health measures later that same month. No one seems to have disputed these basic facts.

But with the horrific consequences of our own later governmental inaction being obvious, sources within our intelligence agencies have sought to demonstrate that they were not the ones asleep at the switch. Earlier this month, an ABC News story cited four separate government sources to reveal that as far back as late November, a special medical intelligence unit within our Defense Intelligence Agency had produced a report revealing than an out-of-control disease epidemic was occurring in the Wuhan area of China, and widely distributed that document throughout the top ranks of our government, warning that steps should be taken to protect US forces based in Asia. After the story aired, a Pentagon spokesman officially denied the existence of that November report, while various other top level government and intelligence officials refused to comment. But a few days later, Israeli television revealed that in November American intelligence had indeed shared such a report on the Wuhan disease outbreak with its NATO and Israeli allies, thus seeming to independently confirm the complete accuracy of the original ABC story and its several government sources.

It therefore appears that elements of the Defense Intelligence Agency were aware of the deadly viral outbreak in Wuhan more than a month before any officials in the Chinese government itself. Unless our intelligence agencies have pioneered the technology of precognition, I think this may have happened for the same reason that arsonists have the earliest knowledge of future fires.

Back in February, before a single American had died from the disease, I wrote my own overview of the possible course of events, and I would still stand by it today:

Consider a particularly ironic outcome of this situation, not particularly likely but certainly possible…

Everyone knows that America’s ruling elites are criminal, crazy, and also extremely incompetent.

So perhaps the coronavirus outbreak was indeed a deliberate biowarfare attack against China, hitting that nation just before Lunar New Year, the worst possible time to produce a permanent nationwide pandemic. However, the PRC responded with remarkable speed and efficiency, implementing by far the largest quarantine in human history, and the deadly disease now seems to be in decline there.

Meanwhile, the disease naturally leaks back into the US, and despite all the advance warning, our totally incompetent government mismanages the situation, producing a huge national health disaster, and the collapse of our economy and decrepit political system.

As I said, not particularly likely, but certainly a very fitting end to the American Empire…

Related Reading:

April 20, 2020 Posted by | Deception, Fake News, Mainstream Media, Warmongering, Timeless or most popular, War Crimes | , , | 3 Comments

How to Get Rid of a POTUS

By John Quincy Adams | Strategic Culture Foundation | April 13, 2020

In the Soviet Union there was an expression “The Organs of State Security” or “Organs” for short. Their supposed power in the USSR was one of the things that separated them from what we used to call “the free world”. Not so much any more – the American Organs came very close to getting rid of the so-called Most Powerful Man in The World. They made only one mistake; they probably won’t next time.

The impeachment of US President Donald Trump is over, or at least this iteration is. This was not a normal impeachment, it was an attempt by the Deep State, the Organs of State Security, the Blob, the Borg – later we will learn what its members call it – to remove a president of the United States. After some false starts, it succeeded at every step except the very last one. But, as they say, practice makes perfect and the Organs have learned from their mistake.

Note that such a removal only becomes necessary when the Organs have failed to block a challenger, a Bernie Sanders or Tulsi Gabbard for example, who might question the status quo. But, in 2016 they failed and, to the amazement of the wise ones, Trump won the election. His remarks about getting along with Russia showed that he might wander off the path The Organs had laid out. The Organs got to work. They first stirred up opinion that he was so unfit for office that getting rid of him would be laudable, no matter how it was done. Not so difficult given the small number of “news” media owners in the USA well trained to take their lead from “anonymous sources in the intelligence community” and not so difficult because the losers were so bitter. He was -phobic – islamo-, trans-, homo-. He was -ist – rac-, sex-, class-. Limited mental abilities, psychological instability, personal deficiencies, incapable, dangerous. An entire theory of incapacity was built on a typo. Each attempt faded and was forgotten – faithless Electors, 25th Amendment, Logan Act – nobody remembers the details, but the stink remains.

But these produced no effective actions. There are only two ways to get rid of an American president if you are unwilling to wait until the next election – murder or impeachment. Media hysteria creates an atmosphere but it doesn’t get anything done.

It’s an experiment – this fails, that fails, try something else. So the Organs moved to another idea – treason as grounds for impeachment. The seeds had been planted – “All 17 intelligence agenciesagreed that he was the nominee of a hostile foreign power. Three years on an inquiry intended to provoke him, but he resisted the provocations and, eventually the inquiry had to admit it found nothing. But the accusation is always there – enemies of the Organs, Tulsi Gabbard, Bernie Sanders, Jill Stein are accused of being puppets of the foreign power.

Trump talks a lot and, sooner or later, will say something the Organs can seize on and twist. And he did. A phone call to a subservient foreign leader provided the opportunity and The Organs of State Security took it. One operative became a “whistleblower” – he didn’t overhear the phone call, didn’t know what it said but did know that a fellow operative was “visibly shaken“. Another operative actually said it out loud:

In the Spring of 2019, I became aware of outside influencers promoting a false narrative of Ukraine inconsistent with the consensus views of the interagency. This narrative was harmful to U.S. government policy. While my interagency colleagues and I were becoming increasingly optimistic on Ukraine’s prospects, this alternative narrative undermined U.S. government efforts to expand cooperation with Ukraine.

Read that again because it’s an important stage in the History of the Decline and Fall of America. “Inconsistent with the consensus views of the interagency”. That’s what they think should make foreign policy, not transient presidents (never mind Art 2 Sec 2). This is the moment when even the dullest should have understood that yes there is a Deep State, the Organs do exist and its operatives call it The Interagency.

The president is already unpopular, many think he must be removed and now The Interagency says he is a traitor. The opposing party stages a show in which “witnesses” from The Interagency testify that he is a traitor because he says or will say, does or will do something that violates “the consensus views of The Interagency”. Like trade Alaska to Russia for support. The House brings bills of impeachment charging that he has weakened national security (The Interagency told us so) and obstruction of justice (many members are ex-prosecutors and built their careers on plea bargains and obstruction of justice charges; that charge is an automatic reflex.)

But the plot failed in the Senate. The Interagency must be wondering what would have happened had it produced, at the right time, compromising information on 20 or 30 senators.

We recapitulate. Should someone who threatens The Interagency manage the improbable feat of climbing over the obstacles and becoming president, The Interagency will

  1. Start a campaign at which obedient media scribes, quoting “people familiar with the matter“, throw all the accusations they can find or imagine. Details will be forgotten but surely, with such clouds of smoke, there must be some fire somewhere. Easier still if members of The Interagency become TV pundits themselves.
  2. Gather all the compromising information The Interagency has – the NSA keeps everything – on Congressmen and be prepared to deploy it. Easier still if members of The Interagency become members themselves.
  3. Wait for some event in which the POTUS goes against The Interagency Consensus.
  4. Use the compromising information in the House to start an inquiry which listens to testimony from Interagency operatives that the POTUS has violated The Interagency consensus and threatened national security.
  5. The House charges him with 1) endangering national security and 2) obstruction of justice.
  6. Use the compromising information to get enough Senators to vote to remove.
  7. Repeat as necessary until every candidate understands who really runs things.

And that’s how how do it.

And The Interagency nearly pulled it off – 20 or 30 Senators, confronted with evidence of sexual or financial peccadilloes (or, these days, -isms or -phobias), could have been “persuaded” to do the right thing.

And so, as Adams foresaw two centuries ago, step by step, America, having bound “an imperial diadem” to her forehead, has ceased to be “the ruler of her own spirit”. The Interagency – built up for the pursuit of monsters – very nearly ate the government. It failed only at the very last step.

April 13, 2020 Posted by | Civil Liberties | , , | 4 Comments

The Project for a New American Century and the Age of Bioweapons: 20 Years of Psychological Terror

By Matthew Ehret | Strategic Culture Foundation | April 8, 2020

A little over 20 years ago, North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD) conducted a military exercise that involved a “hypothetical scenario” of hijacked planes flying into both the Pentagon and the World Trade Center.

One year later, on October 24-26, 2000, another “hypothetical” military exercise was played out featuring an airline crashing into the Pentagon killing 341 people followed by yet another May 2001 Department of Defense “hypothetical scenario” which saw hundreds of medical personnel training for a “guided missile in the form of a hijacked 757 airliner” crashing into the Pentagon.

What arose from the smoke and debris of September 11, 2001 was unlike anything the sleeping masses or international community expected.

The shock effect so traumatized the masses that quite suddenly, citizens found themselves willing to give up their liberties at home while acquiescing to any retaliatory action desired by their government abroad. The scale of horror was so great that the international community banded together and showed their love and solidarity towards America in the wake of the tragedy with candlelight vigils across Asia, the Middle East, Africa, Russia and South America. Humanity’s natural tendency to embrace and aid our fellow man in times of crisis expressed itself like a bright light in a world of confused darkness and a hope for a durable peace awoke in the hearts of many.

Alas, as the world came soon to discover, that hope was short lived.

The Neocon Takeover of America

Police State measures grew swiftly with the Patriot Act and mass internal surveillance under the “crisis management” run by the neocon cabal in the White House. While a new type of regime change war was created abroad, Dangerous protocols for Cheney’s “Continuity of Government” were set into motion and with these procedures, new mandates for Martial Law were created amplifying the powers, financing and deployment of U.S. Military capabilities both within the USA “under crisis conditions” and around the world.

Governments that had no connection to 9/11 were swiftly targeted for destruction using false evidence of “yellowcake” produced in the bowels of MI6, and a broader unipolar military encirclement of both Russia and China was set into motion which President Putin called out brilliantly in his famous 2007 Munich Security Conference Speech.

Of course this should not have been a surprise for anyone who took the time to read the Project for a New American Century manifesto published in October 2000 entitled Rebuilding America’s Defenses’ (RAD).

Under the Chairmanship of William Kristol (a neocon agent today leading the charge to impeach President Trump) and co-authored by John Bolton, Richard Perle, Dick Cheney, Paul Wolfowitz, Elliot Abrams, and Donald Rumsfeld, RAD stated that to “further the process of transformation, even if it brings revolutionary change, is likely to be a long one-absent some catastrophic and catalyzing event- like a new Pearl Harbor”. Going further to describe its Hobbesian agenda, the cabal stated that “the Cold War was a bipolar world; the 21st century world is- for the moment at least- decidedly unipolar with America as the world’s sole superpower”.

While much has been said about the “inside job” of 9/11, a lesser appreciated terrorist act occurred over several weeks beginning on September 18, 2001 killing five and infective 17 in the form of envelopes laced with bio-weaponized anthrax.

The Age of Bioweapons and PNAC

This anthrax attack led quickly into the 2004 Bioshield Act with a $5 billion budget and mandate to “pre-empt and defend further bioweapon attacks”. This new chapter of the revolution in military affairs was to be coordinated from leading bioweapons facility at the Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases at Fort Detrick. Since 2002, over $50 billion has been spent on Bioweapons research and defense to date.

The earlier October 2000 RAD document emphasized the importance which the neocon cabal placed on bioweapons (and other next generation war tech) stating: “Combat will likely take place in new dimensions: In space, cyber-space and perhaps the world of microbes… advanced forms of biological warfare that can “target” specific genotypes may transform biological warfare from the realm of terror to a politically useful tool”.

Lawyer and bioweapons expert Francis Boyle stated in 2007 that Fort Detrick’s mandate includes “acquiring, growing, modifying, storing, packing, and dispersing classical, emerging and genetically engineered pathogens for offensive weapon programs.” These new post-9/11 practices fully trashed the 1975 UN Convention Against Biological Weapons ratified by the USA by establishing a vast international network of bioweapons labs coordinated from Fort Detrick which would be assigned the role of doing much of the dirty work that the U.S. was “officially” prevented from doing on its own soil.

Where Hitler used the burning of the Reichstag to justify his enabling Acts, the neocons had their 9/11. The difference in the case of America was that Cheney failed to achieve the same level of absolute control over his nation as Hitler captured by 1934 (evidenced by pushback from patriotic American military intelligence circles against Cheney’s Iran war agenda). With this neocon failure, the republic lurched on.

The Rot Continues Under Obama

Obama’s rise was seen as a hopeful light to many naïve Democrats who still had not realized how a “false left” vs “false right” clash had been slowly constructed over the post WWII years. Either camp increasingly found itself converging towards the same world government agenda through using somewhat dissimilar paths and flavors.

It didn’t take long for many of Obama’s more critically-minded supporters to realize that the mass surveillance/police state measures, regime change wars, and military confrontation of Russia and China begun under Cheney not only failed to stop, but even expanded at faster rates than ever.

In the months before Obama left office in July 2016, the classified Directive 40: National Continuity Policy was enacted creating a line of “Devolution authority” for all branches of the government to a “duplicate chain of individuals secreted outside Washington available in a catastrophic emergency”. Days prior to Trump’s inauguration, Federal Continuity Directive 1 was issued to transfer authority to military forces who could be used to suppress “insurrection, domestic violence, unlawful combination or conspiracy.”

The Importance of Knowing This History

There are very clearly two diametrically opposing methods of analyzing, and solving the existential crisis threatening our world currently: Multipolar or Unipolar.

While Russia and China represent a multipolar/pro-nation state vision driven by large scale development projects that benefit all- rich and poor alike exemplified by the New Silk Road, Polar Silk Road, Space Silk Road and now Health Silk Road, something much darker is being promoted by the same financial oligarchy that owns both right and left sides of the deep state coin. These later forces have provably positioned themselves to take control of western governments under crisis conditions and are not afraid to use every weapon in their arsenal to destroy their perceived enemies… including bioweaponry. This latter uncomfortable reality was asserted quite candidly by leading officials of Iran and even the Chinese Foreign Ministry just weeks ago.

Admittedly, whether or not the current coronavirus pandemic is a bioweapon is not yet fully proven (although growing body of evidence asserts that it is, as seen here and here and here and here). What we know for certain are the following facts:

Numbers are being systematically misrepresented to convey much greater rates of death vs infections as dozens of leading medical experts have proven. Contaminated test kits have started showing up in the UK on March 30 and countless false results are showing up since covid test kits are often not differentiating between covid-19 and the typical coronavirus strains of the flu that average between 7-14% of flu cases every year. This doesn’t mean that COVID-19 should not be taken seriously, but only that the reported numbers are being artificially falsified to generate heightened panic.

The COVID-19 Task Force at London’s Imperial College has been found to be the singular source of the false “left” vs “right” debate poisoning the west’s response to the pandemic. Teams working out of this British Intelligence nexus have generated BOTH the “do-nothing-and-wait-until-natural-resistance-evolves” herd immunity theory while simultaneously creating the “shut everything down one-size-fits-all” doomsday models being used by the WHO, UN, and leading Deep State assets like Michael Bloomberg, Steve Bannon, Bill Gates and George Soros. In case you doubt the influence of the Imperial College on world policy, a March 17 New York Times article described them in the following terms: “With ties to the World Health Organization and a team of 50 scientists, led by a prominent epidemiologist, Neil Ferguson, Imperial is treated as a sort of gold standard, its mathematical models feeding directly into government policies.”

Investigative Journalist Whitney Webb’s February 2020 research demonstrated conclusively that DARPA had received funding in tandem with Fort Detrick since 2017 on genetic modification of novel coronaviruses (with a focus on bats) as well as the development of never before used DNA and mRNA vaccines which change the structure of DNA both for an individual and potentially for a whole race.

Lastly, and most importantly, the pre-9/11 military exercises were not merely hypothetical scenarios but exercises which led directly into a new “Pearl Harbor” that modified the behaviour of Americans under terror, panic and misinformation like nothing ever seen before. The parallels to today’s coronavirus outbreak cannot be missed for anyone who has taken a serious look at the strange case of the Event 201 Global Pandemic Exercise on October 19, 2019 in New York. Event 201 was sponsored by the Michael Bloomberg School of Public Health at Johns Hopkins, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, U.S. Central Intelligence Agency, and World Economic Forum which ran simulations under the “hypothetical” scenario of a novel coronavirus pandemic killing 60 million people. Reviewing just one of Event 201’s many recordings openly available on their official site features some very disturbing parallels to the events unfolding today:

Unipolar Martial Law or Multipolar Marshall Plan?

As I outlined in my previous paper, the mass-panic generated by COVID-19 has created a 9/11-situation with the expected police state laws being passed under the radar of many people who would normally be paying attention to such things. One of the most dangerous measures enacted involved a classified bill in February which formally mandates the head of NORTHCOM (who is also the head of NORAD) to become acting President of the United States under conditions of Martial Law, un-governability of the executive branch or general chaos in America. This later scenario is not terribly unlikely considering the danger of a financial blowout of the banking system combined with economic lockdowns of the west.

China and Russia both understand the nature of the game and both nations have acted responsibly in dealing with the outbreak of Coronavirus with China’s successful containment having won seven consecutive days of no new cases. It is important that unlike the remedies promoted by London’s Imperial College, neither Russia or China have totally shut down their nations, but have rather kept their economies alive by selecting methods for selective quarantines and lockdowns (China only locked down 15 nations plus Wuhan while the remaining 95% of their economy continued to produces and support the recovering component).

We know that President Trump has resisted the pressure by Deep State Experts to shut down America and has stated so repeatedly, but up until his recent conversations with Xi Jinping and Putin, there were very few options available to him beyond those proposed by Dr. Cauci, the Green New Dealing Dems or “bailout everything” monetarists around Mnuchin and Kudlow.

Now that China and Russia have begun sending vital medical equipment to America as part of the Health Silk Road (over the screams of neocons and neoliberal technocrats like), a new possibility for a cure has presented itself. If Trump acts decisively with courage and intelligence, there is still a chance that sovereign nation states may yet stay in the drivers’ seat and use this crisis as an opportunity to force through a debt jubilee, banking reform and new Bretton Woods emergency conference to establish a foundation for a new just economic system. If Trump is unsuccessful in this task, it is more than a little scary to think about what hell will beset the world in the coming months and years.

April 8, 2020 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Militarism, Timeless or most popular, Video | , , | 1 Comment