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Say No To The US-Israel Mutual Defense Pact

By Eric Striker | National Justice | December 3, 2019

Last September, Donald Trump and Benjamin Netanyahu hinted that they were working on a mutual defense pact. Such a treaty, if signed, would officially and permanently mandate an American military intervention if Israel were to ever start a conflict with its neighbors.

The Trump administration is desperate to get this done, but Netanyahu is having trouble selling the idea to his rival Benny Gantz. The Likud party has so far been unable to form a government and Netanyahu is battling corruption charges. As a side note, two major GOP donors, Sheldon Adelson and Larry Ellison, are defense witnesses in Bibi’s case.

The major reason why some sectors of the Israeli state want Netanyahu gone is that they believe his government’s belligerence is responsible for Iran’s stunning rise. Netanyahu has chosen Israel-above-all unilateralism using Zion’s cats-paws in Washington to try and bully Tehran, but have walked all over Chinese and Russian interests in the process.

Two years into the Trump/Israel “maximum pressure” campaign, Iran is not only more powerful than before, it is participating in joint war games with China and Russia. This has angered competing Jewish factions inside Israel, who preferred the Obama method of passively subverting Iran through its countries pro-US/pro-Europe “moderate” liberal reformists. Hassan Rouhani, who they saw as the Persian “Gorbachev,” has now been fully discredited in the eyes of his people thanks to Trump and Netanyahu.

While all segments of Israeli society are having a public debate on the pros and cons of a military pact for their country, here in the US nobody has consulted with the 1.3 million active-duty American servicemen who will die in a world war to expand Israel’s borders.

JINSA’s Plan 

Lindsay Graham has told Jews at private events that he is working on this bill and is confident it will be ratified in the Senate. So far, the only people within US borders participating in this conversation are the Republican Jewish Coalition and JINSA (Jewish Institute for National Security of America). The latter fifth column is writing the terms of the treaty.

Last July, JINSA released details of the pact they want Graham to push through, titled “For a Narrow US-Israel Defense Pact,” which can be obtained online (I will not link to downloads on JINSA’s website for security reasons).

The policy paper demands that Israel be granted special access to intelligence collected by the “Five Eyes Alliance” (Australia, UK, New Zealand, Canada and the US), officially turning the entire Anglo-Saxon world into a global Jewish spy network (which is already unofficially true).

Furthermore, it calls on the war clause be triggered if any country “threatens” to use chemical or nuclear weapons against the Jewish state or physically undermines Israel’s economic activities. This is very open-ended.

The most ludicrous part of the Graham/JINSA treaty is section 3.4, where Israel is under no obligation to notify or seek approval from the United States when it decides to engage in a military attack against another party.

In other words, if Israel decides to start a war with Iran (or China, or Russia, or all of them), it doesn’t have to discuss this with its “ally” first. Israel reserves its right to act unilaterally and America must go along for the ride whether we want to or not.

America gets absolutely nothing from joining such an agreement, except the possibility of a catastrophic world war that can be started by unstable psychopaths like Benjamin Netanyahu without warning, whenever they please.

The US has not signed a mutual defense treaty since 1962.

It’s time the 98% start demanding Donald Trump and Lindsey Graham include us in this debate, and prepare to protest as soon as this bill hits the Senate floor.

December 3, 2019 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Militarism, Wars for Israel | , , , , , | 8 Comments

A False Accusation of Antisemitism from Where You Would Least Expect It

By Jeff Blankfort | Dissident Voice | September 12th, 2019

I know what America is. America is a thing you can move very easily, move it in the right direction.

— Benjamin Netayahu, 2001, quoted in Ha’aretz, July 15, 2010

It is not uncommon, of course, to be labeled “anti-Semitic” for calling attention to the inordinate power of the Israel Lobby over our political processes or suggesting that the Iraq War was launched on Israel’s behalf. The last place that I would expect to find such an allegation, however, was on the CounterPunch website to which I have contributed a number of articles on the subject over the years.

On August 2nd in an opinion piece by Ron Jacobs, headlined, “Israel—The Largest US Aircraft Carrier in the World,” those, like myself, who have described, in detail, on CounterPunch and elsewhere, the manner in which the Israel Lobby controls both Congress and the White House on issues relating to Israel, were accused of propagating “what is an essentially anti-Semitic argument concerning the nature of the Washington-Tel Aviv alliance.”

That Jacobs, a veteran of the Sixties as long of tooth as myself, a prolific writer and frequent contributor to Left publications, would make such an allegation, after what we have learned about the role of pro-Israel Jewish neocons in fomenting the Iraq War and following that, implementing crippling sanctions on Iran while agitating against the nuclear agreement with Tehran, is as mind boggling as it is insulting.

Jacobs did this under the cover of what purports to be a review of a new book by historian Stephen Gowans, Israel: A Beachhead in the Middle East, which Jacobs contends is “a necessary and forceful rebuke of those on the left and right who insist that Washington is Israeli-occupied territory.”

First, a book review it is not. One cannot do justice to any serious book in just 764 words which is the length of Jacobs’ piece, although whether Gowans’ book which amplifies the charge of antisemitism can be taken seriously is open to question.

If not a book review then, what is it? Let’s start with the title, a quote from the late general and Secretary of State Alexander Haig whose very sanity came into question following the assassination attempt on President Ronald Reagan when Vice-President George HW Bush was away from the capital. At that point, as the New York Times described it, Haig “raced upstairs [to the press room] and went directly to the lectern before a television audience of millions. His knuckles whitening, his arms shaking, Mr. Haig declared to the world, ‘I am in control here, in the White House.’ He did not give that appearance.”

In any case, Gowans use of Haig’s quote in his book turned out to be hearsay from a dubious source.

From Jacobs’ opening sentence, it seems clear that his intention was to provide “damage control” for the plethora of predominantly Jewish organizations whose primary raison d’etre is pushing the agenda of the Netanyahu government on Capitol Hill whose activities, not to mention, existence, have been largely ignored or dismissed by others on the “Left” who share Jacobs’ aversion to blaming even a segment of American Jews for anything. (Think Noam Chomsky, Phyllis Bennis, Stephen Zunes).

“The Israeli government does not control the foreign policy of the United States.,” is how Jacobs began his article. True, but none of those he is criticizing argue that it is and Jacobs must surely know this. They affirm, with considerable evidence to back it up, that supporters of the Israeli government are largely responsible for shaping US policies in the Middle East and nowhere else. In other words, Jacobs has created a straw man.

If we restrict ourselves to this millennium, one only has to look at the appointees from the Project for a New American Century (PNAC) and the Jewish Institute for National Security Affairs (JINSA) that George W Bush brought into his administration, and particularly to the Pentagon and who became activated, like sleeper cells, after the events of September 11.

From PNAC, came a troop of 20, foremost among them, Dick Cheney, Dubya’s Vice-President, Donald Rumsfeld, (Secretary of Defense), Paul Wolfowitz, (Deputy Secretary of Defense), Richard Perle, (Defense Advisory Board), Doug Feith, (Under Secretary of Defense for Policy), Lewis (Scooter) Libby (Cheney’s Chief of Staff), and John Bolton who received a recess appointment as UN ambassador when it was clear he wouldn’t get Senate approval. (Bolton would later be hailed by Israel’s UN ambassador, Dan Gillerman, as “the sixth man in our office” and last year, after replacing H.R. McMaster as Trump’s National Security Adviser, he received the “Defender of Israel” award from the Zionist Organization of America).

Launched in 1997 by neocons Robert Kagan and Bill Kristol, (son of Irving Kristol, the neocon movement’s co-founder), PNAC drew attention on Capitol Hill the following year when it sent a letter to then President Bill Clinton, calling on him to overthrow Saddam. Among its signatories were Cheney, Rumsfeld, and Wolfowitz. Legislation was passed, the Iraq Liberation Act, in 1998, which stated that it was US policy to oust Saddam but no action was taken or contemplated.

What makes the Israeli connection indisputable was that PNAC was preceded a year earlier by a policy paper prepared for Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, entitled, “A Clean Break: A New Strategy for Securing the Realm.” Its authors were a study group led by Perle which included Feith, David Wurmser and his Israeli wife Meyrav Wurmser and called for the removal of Saddam Hussein, highlighting Iraq’s possession of “weapons of mass destruction.” Wurmser would go on to become a Middle East Advisor for Vice President Cheney and with Feith, help set up the Office of Special Plans to produce evidence of Iraq’s WMDs when the CIA failed to come up with it.

What those who insist that the 2003 war on Iraq was just a continuation of traditional US imperialist policies refuse to acknowledge is that the invasion of Iraq marked a 180 degree break with what US Middle Eastern policy had been up to that point, namely, to maintain stability in that oil rich region.

That is why former president George HW Bush, his Secretary of State, James Baker and his National Security Advisor, former general, Brent Scowcroft, publicly opposed the war and why Bush Sr resisted demands from the neocons and Israel’s allies in the media, to have US troops march to Baghdad and remove Saddam from power after ousting Iraqi troops from Kuwait a decade earlier.

When this fact was pointed out to George W Bush by Tim Russert on NBC’s Meet the Press, Dubya responded, “I answer to a higher father.”

Before the war went south, Perle and Wolfowitz were competing in the media for credit for the great victory over Saddam. Both men, along with Cheney, Feith, and Bolton, were also members of JINSA’s Advisory Board, an influential but little known neocon operation that came into existence in 1976, apparently in response to President Gerald Ford having suspended a shipment of US jet fighters to Israel for six months upon Israel’s refusal to give up land in the Egyptian Sinai that it had captured in the October 1973 war.

Moreover, Ford sent a private letter to Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin warning him about a likely re-evaluation of US-Israel relations, hinting that he might call for Israel to return to its pre-1967 borders. Rabin made the letter public which alerted AIPAC to respond. It struck back against Ford by getting 76 senators, three-quarters of that body, to sign a letter to the president, warning him that the US-Israeli bond was sacrosanct and should not be meddled with. Ford quickly backed off and over the years, many more such letters, drafted by AIPAC, would reach the desk of our presidents.

JINSA saw its goal as making sure that the US and Israeli militaries would become so entwined that no future president would ever contemplate or be able to disentangle the armed forces of both countries. To ensure that, it created a large advisory board composed of former generals and admirals and a few police chiefs while arranging programs to take newly retiring generals and admirals on all expense paid trips to Israel. There are currently 57 former generals and admirals on the JINSA advisory board. The first and last article about JINSA in a national publication appeared in The Nation in 2002 and like PNAC, its existence has been ignored by those engaged in damage control on Israel’s behalf.

Even Colin Powell’s attribution of the war to Donald Rumsfeld’s embrace by “the JINSA crowd,” in Karen DeYoung’s biography of Powell, Soldier, did not stir any of the latter to reconsider their positions.

Going back to the first US war on Iraq, all of the sanctions put in place against governments viewed by Israel as its enemies, have largely been the work of AIPAC and its sister organizations such as the Washington Institute for Near East Policy. WINEP or TWI (its current acronym) was spawned by AIPAC in 1985 in order to make the step from lobbying for Israel to actually making policy itself. It has become arguably the most influential of the Beltway think tanks whose “experts” routinely appear before Congressional committees and whose op-ed pieces invariably find their way into the opinion sections of our leading newspapers and the inboxes of members of Congress.

To enforce the sanctions, after 9/11, President Bush set up a special department in the Treasury for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence which, beginning with the appointment of pro-Israel zealot, Stuart Levey, became the exclusive provenance of pro-Israel Jews, the latest of whom, Sigal Mandelker, is actually an Israeli. It is this department, in essence, an arm of the Israeli government, that determines what countries and companies are adhering to or breaking sanctions on Iran and Syria and which organizations should be placed on the terrorist watch list.

When Obama took office, the Israeli press reported that Levey had made a special trip to Israel to assure Netanyahu that under the new president, nothing would change.

Were there not sanctions on Iraq and on Iran, the major US oil companies would have been more than happy to do business with both countries. The last company that tried, Conoco, was obliged to cancel a deal it had made with Tehran in March, 1995.

The only way the Obama Administration was able to sign the JCPOA (Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action) with Iran and the other members of the UN Security Council plus Germany was to declare it to be an agreement, not a treaty, thus avoiding having a vote on it by the Senate where it would surely have been defeated. Not to be denied, Israel’s friends in Washington had the Senate pass a bill requiring Obama and succeeding presidents to ratify US participation in the agreement every 90 days. This was the equivalent of a poison pill and a perfect set-up for Donald Trump.

There is far too much evidence of Israel’s control of Washington to include in this short article but two more items should seal the debate.

The first begins in 2015 in Las Vegas when Jewish multi billionaire Sheldon Adelson held two auditions for prospective Republican presidential candidates at his Venetian Hotel to determine which one would be the best for Israel. Adelson was at the time and still is the owner of the most widely read newspaper in Israel, Israel Hayom, which is provided free and has been seen, until recently, as a mouthpiece for Netanyahu. On the day he opened his newspaper, he apologized to his Israeli audience for having “worn the uniform of the US army and not the Israeli Defense Forces,” a clip of which can still be seen on You Tube.

Adelson’s choices after the auditions were first Ted Cruz and then Marco Rubio. When both failed to attract the voters, Adelson switched to Trump, pumping tens of millions of dollars into his campaign and, judging from Trump’s gifts to Israel, not the least of which was moving the US embassy to Jerusalem and recognizing Israel’s sovereignty over the Golan Heights, it is safe to say that Adelson bought himself a president.

Cut now to last December, in Florida, at the annual convention of the relatively new Israeli American Council, the major funder of which happens to be Adelson. On the stage as the host was Israeli-American Haim Saban, one of the Democratic Party’s major funders who once boasted to a New Yorker writer that he was a “one issue man and that issue is Israel.”

It was shortly after the November mid-term elections and Saban was interviewing the returning House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Charles Schumer, the Senate’s top ranking Democrat. As Ron Kampeas of the Jewish Telegraphic Agency (JTA) described it on Dec. 2:

Nancy Pelosi, the Democrat who likely will be speaker of the new US House of Representatives, listed pro-Israel lawmakers she plans to name to key committee positions and said her party remained fundamentally pro-Israel.

’We have people very well placed to share our values,’ Pelosi, a California Democrat, said in addressing the final event Sunday of the annual Israeli-American Council conference, after listing planned assignments.

Pelosi said she would name Rep. Nita Lowey, D-New York, to chair the Appropriations Committee; Eliot Engel, D-New York, to chair the Foreign Affairs Committee; Ted Deutch, D-Florida, to chair the Middle East subcommittee; Adam Schiff, D-California, to chair the Intelligence Committee; Alcee Hastings, D-Florida, to chair the human rights-monitoring Helsinki Committee; Debbie Wasserman Schultz, D-Florida, to a key Appropriations Committee position; and Lois Frankel, D-Florida, to a key Foreign Affairs Committee position.

All have longstanding pro-Israel records and all but Hastings are Jewish.”1

Pelosi’s exchange with Saban can still be viewed on You Tube but don’t look for any report on that conference outside of the Jewish press. The corporate media, like Congress, is under the thumb of the Israel Lobby.

Notes

  1. Wasserman-Schultz had been the chair of the DNC who was forced to resign after the release by WikiLeaks of the DNC’s emails exposed the DNC’s efforts to sabotage Bernie Sanders on Hillary Clinton’s behalf. Obviously, that did not hurt her in Pelosi’s eyes.

Jeffrey Blankfort can be reached at: jblankfort@earthlink.net.

September 12, 2019 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Mainstream Media, Warmongering, Timeless or most popular, Wars for Israel | , , , , , | 10 Comments

Part 2: The post WWII strategy of the neocons has been shaped by Russophobia against the Soviet Union and now Russia

The Turning on Russia Series

By Paul Fitzgerald and Elizabeth Gould | Invisible History | April 18, 2018

In the months and years following the Arab-Israeli war of October 1973, the issue of Israel and its security would become so enmeshed in American policy as to become one and the same. The lesson of October 1973 that détente had succeeded in securing American and Soviet interests, was anathema to the entire neoconservative agenda and revealed its true hand. At the time a majority of American Jews were not necessarily against better U.S.-Soviet relations. But with the forceful hammering of influential right-wing neoconservative pundits like Ben Wattenberg and Irving Kristol and the explosive manifestation of the Evangelical Christian Zionist movement, many of Israel’s liberal American supporters were persuaded to turn against détente for the first time. According to the distinguished State Department Soviet specialist Raymond Garthoff’s Détente and Confrontation ; “Analytically and objectively the American-Soviet cooperation in defusing both the Israeli-Arab conflict, and their own involvement in a crisis confrontation, may be judged a successful application of crisis management under détente.” But as Garthoff acknowledges, this success threatened “Israel’s jealously guarded freedom of action to determine unilaterally its own security requirements,” and set off alarm bells in Tel Aviv and Washington.

With Richard Nixon on the ropes with Watergate and Vietnam dragging to a conclusion, American foreign policy was open to external pressure and within a year would fall permanently into the hands of a coalition of pro-Israel neoconservative and right-wing defense industry lobbying groups. These groups such as the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC), the Jewish Institute for National Security Affairs (JINSA), the American Security Council and Committee on the Present Danger would set about to make American interests and their own personal crusade to control the greater Middle East, interchangeable.

The issue of U.S. support for Israel, its neoconservative backers and its dedicated anti-Russian bias has a long and complicated history dating back long before Theodor Herzl’s19th century Zionist Project. Zionism was not instilled in American thinking by Jews but by 16th and 17th century British Puritans whose sacred mission was to reestablish an ancient Kingdom of Israel and fulfill what they believed to be biblical prophecy based on the King James Version of the bible.

Britain’s Anglo/Israel movement found common cause with the British Empire’s 19th and early 20th century political goals of controlling the Middle East through Jewish resettlement of Palestine which culminated in the Balfour declaration of 1917. This long term plan of the British Empire continues on today through American policy and what has been dubbed the Zionist Project or the Yinon plan. Add the 700 million strong worldwide Evangelical movement and its 70 million Christian Zionists in the United States and American foreign policy towards the Middle East becomes an apocalyptic confluence of covert agendas, ethnic grudges and religious feuds locked in permanent crisis.

It has been argued that the neoconservative’s slavish adherence to Israel makes neoconservatism an exclusively Jewish creation. Numerous neoconservative writers like the New York Times’ David Brooks tar critics of Israel as anti-Semites by accusing them of substituting the term “neoconservative” for “Jew.” Others argue that “neoconservatism is indeed a Jewish intellectual and political movement” with “close ties to the most extreme nationalistic, aggressive, racialist and religiously fanatic elements within Israel.”

Although clearly acting as a political front for Israel’s interests and an engine for permanent war, neoconservatism would never have succeeded as a political movement without the support and cooperation of powerful non-Jewish elites. New America Foundation co-founder Michael Lind writes in The Nation in 2004, “Along with other traditions that have emerged from the anti-Stalinist left, neoconservatism has appealed to many Jewish intellectuals and activists but it is not, for that reason, a Jewish movement. Like other schools on the left, neoconservatism recruited from diverse “farm teams” including liberal Catholics… populists, socialists and New Deal liberals in the South and Southwest… With the exception of Middle East strategy… there is nothing particularly “Jewish” about neoconservative views on foreign policy. While the example of Israel has inspired American neocons… the global strategy of today’s neocons is shaped chiefly by the heritage of cold war anti-Communism.”

Add to that the  abiding influence of Britain’s Imperial policy-makers following World War II – the British creation of Pakistan in 1947 and Israel in 1948 – and the hidden hand of a global imperial strategy is revealed. Pakistan exists to keep the Russians out of Central Asia and Israel exists to keep the Russians out of the Middle East.

Whether American democracy could have survived the stresses put upon it by the Great Depression, World War II, the Cold War and the ongoing frauds posed by neoconservatism now poses an answerable question. It couldn’t. Fletcher School international law professor Michael Glennon maintains the creation of the national security state in 1947 as a second, double government effectively renders the question mute. He writes “The public believes that the constitutionally-established institutions control national security policy, but that view is mistaken. Judicial review is negligible; congressional oversight is dysfunctional; and presidential control is nominal. Absent a more informed and engaged electorate, little possibility exists for restoring accountability in the formulation and execution of national security policy.”

The motion to kill détente and hobble Henry Kissinger’s balance of power or “realist” foreign policy quickly followed the 1973 war in the form of the anti-Soviet amendment to the Trade Act known as Jackson-Vanik. Sponsored by Senator Henry “Scoop” Jackson of Washington and Representative Charles A. Vanik of Ohio but engineered by Albert Wohlstetter acolyte Richard Perle, trade concessions and virtually anything regarding Moscow would be forever linked to the Zionist Project through Jewish emigration to Israel from the Soviet Union.

Supported by organized labor, traditional conservatives, liberals and neoconservatives, Jackson-Vanik hobbled efforts by the Nixon/Ford administration to slow the arms race and move towards a permanent easing of tensions with the Soviet Union. It removed control of American foreign policy from the President and Secretary of State while delivering it permanently into the hands of the old anti-Stalinist/Trotskyist neoconservatives.

Jackson-Vanik overcame liberal support for détente because of an intellectual dishonesty within the non-communist left that had been roiling America’s intelligentsia since the 1930s. That dishonesty had transformed left wing Trotskyists into the CIA’s very own anti-Soviet cultural Cold Warriors and aligned them with the goals of the West’s right-wing. By the 1950s their cause was not about left or right, or even liberal anti-Communism versus Stalinism. It was about exchanging a value system of laws and checks and balances for a system alien to America. As Frances Stoner Saunder’s describes in her book The Cultural Cold War, it was simply about grabbing power and keeping it. “‘It’s so corrupt, it doesn’t even know it,’ said [legendary Random House editor] Jason Epstein, in an uncompromising mood. ‘When these people talk about a “counter-intelligentsia”, what they do is to set up a false and corrupt value system to support whatever ideology they’re committed to at the time. The only thing they’re really committed to is power, and the introduction of Tzarist-Stalinist strategies in American politics. They’re so corrupt they probably don’t even know it. They’re little, lying apparatchiks. People who don’t believe in anything, who are only against something, shouldn’t go on crusades or start revolutions.”

But neoconservatives did go on crusades and start revolutions and continued to corrupt the American political process until it was unrecognizable. In 1973 neoconservatives did not want the United States having better relations with Moscow and created Jackson-Vanik to obstruct it. But their ultimate goal as explained by Janine Wedel in her 2009 study the Shadow Elite, was a Trotskyist dream; the complete transfer of power from an elected government representing the American people to what she referred to as a “new nomenklatura,” or “guardians of the national interest,” free from the restraints imposed by the laws of the nation. Wedel writes, “Daniel Patrick Moynihan, the late senator from New York and onetime neoconservative, suggested that this kind of suspension of the rules and processes was what motivated him to part ways with the movement in the 1980s: ‘They wished for a military posture approaching mobilization; they would create or invent whatever crises were required to bring this about.’”

The synthesis of James Burnham’s Cold War ethos (established formally by Paul Nitze in his 1950 NSC-68) together with Trotskyism (espoused by the core neoconservatives) combined with this aggressive new support for Israel empowered America’s neoconservatives with a cult-like political influence over American decision-making that would only grow stronger with time.

As envisaged by James Burnham, the Cold War was a struggle for the world and would be fought with the kind of political subversion he’d learned to master as a leading member of Trotsky’s Fourth International. But joined to Israel by Burnham’s fellow Trotskyists and the underlying influence of British Israelism – it would enter an apocalyptic mythos and resist any and all efforts to bring it to an end. John B. Judis, former editor of the New Republic relates in a 1995 Foreign Affairs book review of the Rise of Neoconservatism by John Ehrman: “In the framework of international communism, the Trotskyists were rabid internationalists rather than realists or nationalists… The neoconservatives who went through Trotskyist and socialist movements came to see foreign policy as a crusade, the goal of which was first global socialism, then social democracy, and finally democratic capitalism. They never saw foreign policy in terms of national interest or balance of power. Neoconservatism was a kind of inverted Trotskyism, which sought to ‘export democracy’ in [Joshua] Muravchik’s words, in the same way that Trotsky originally envisaged exporting socialism.”

Through the eyes of the State Department’s Raymond Garthoff, the moves against détente in 1973 are viewed from the narrow perspective of a professional American diplomat. But according to Judis in his article titled “Trotskyism to Anachronism: The Neoconservative Revolution” the legacy of NSC-68 and Trotskyism contributed to a form of apocalyptic thinking that would slowly exclude the professional policy-making process from the realm of empirical observation and replace it with a politicized mechanism for creating endless conflict. “The constant reiteration and exaggeration of the Soviet threat was meant to dramatize and win converts, but it also reflected the doomsday revolutionary mentality that characterized the old left.”

In the end, Judis argues that the neoconservative success at using self-fulfilling prophecies to kill détente actually made the Cold War far more dangerous by encouraging the Soviet Union to undertake a military buildup and expand its influence which the neoconservatives then used as proof that their theories were correct. In effect, “Neoconservatism was a self-fulfilling prophecy. It helped precipitate the crisis in U.S.-Soviet relations that it then claimed to uncover and respond to.”

Writing in the summer of 1995 with the Cold War finally ended and the storm passed, Judis considered neoconservatism as the subject of ridicule, describing key neoconservatives as merely political anachronisms and not the thriving political dynamo described by John Ehrman in his book. But in the end Ehrman turned out to be right, the neoconservative crusade had not come to a close with the end of the Cold War but had only entered a new and more dangerous phase.

Copyright © 2018 Fitzgerald & Gould All rights reserved

May 10, 2018 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Russophobia, Timeless or most popular | , , , , | Leave a comment

Clean Break II: Iran Hawks Decide to Burn it All Down

Michael Makovsky (l), CEO of the Jewish Institute for National Security of America (JINSA), at a September 2013 meeting with Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu. (WWW.JINSA.ORG).
By Derek Davison and Jim Lobe | Washington Report on Middle East Affairs | March/April 2018

THE 20TH CENTURY was rife with partitions, many of them involving European powers carving up colonial possessions in Africa and the Middle East with what often appears to have been little or no concern for local realities. Perhaps the most famous of these free-hand attempts at state creation is the Sykes-Picot Line, whose legacy is very much still with us (and not for the better). But Sykes-Picot is far from the only example of European colonial borders that are still causing problems decades after they were drawn.

But who cares about all of that? It doesn’t seem to be an issue for at least some of America’s anti-Iran hawks. In response to Iran’s rising profile in the Middle East, fueled mostly by a war those neocons ardently championed and the striking ineptitude of the hawks’ new favorite Persian Gulf monarchy, the intellectual heirs to the men who drew those ill-fated borders are proposing, long after it might have done any good, to re-draw them.

Writing for Fox News on Dec. 25, Michael Makovsky — who is no fringe figure, being CEO of the neoconservative Jewish Institute for National Security of America (JINSA) — suggests just such a strategy for countering Iranian influence in the Middle East:

Maintaining Syria, Iraq, Lebanon and Yemen in their existing forms is unnatural and serves Iran’s interests. There is nothing sacred about these countries’ borders, which seem to have been drawn by a drunk and blindfolded mapmaker. Indeed, in totally disregarding these borders, ISIS and Iran both have already demonstrated the anachronism and irrelevance of the borders.

Syria, Iraq, Lebanon and Yemen are not nation-states as Americans understand them, but rather post-World War I artificial constructs, mostly created out of the ashes of the Ottoman Empire in a colossally failed experiment by Western leaders.

With their deep ethno-sectarian fissures, these four countries have either been held together by a strong authoritarian hand or suffered sectarian carnage.

It is astonishing to read neoconservatives, who have done little else since the 1970s but lobby for exerting American hegemony in the Middle East, decry the results of the exertion of European hegemony in the Middle East. It reads like an artificial intelligence that just briefly verges on full self-awareness before pivoting and falling back to safer ground. It’s particularly rich for Makovsky, whose JINSA predecessors promoted the ouster of two of those “strong authoritarian hands” in former Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein and former Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh, to bemoan one result of their ouster.

But let’s focus on the proposal Makovsky makes: redrawing borders in the Middle East, creating what he calls “loose confederations or new countries with more borders that more naturally conform along sectarian lines,” in order to counter Iran. The proposal strongly resembles recommendations found in “A Clean Break: A New Strategy for Securing the Realm,” a 1996 publication of the Jerusalem-based Institute for Advanced Strategic and Political Studies that was prepared in collaboration with several other neoconservative think tanks — including JINSA.

“A Clean Break,” the conclusion of a task force that included such Likudnik geniuses as Richard Perle, Douglas Feith and David Wurmser, argued in part that Israel should work with friendly governments in Turkey and Jordan to contain regional threats, particularly coming from Syria. It concluded, among other things, that Israeli leaders should pursue “removing Saddam Hussein from power in Iraq—an important objective in its own right—as a means of foiling Syria’s regional ambitions.” “Syria” in this context serves as a stand-in for “Iran.” Long-term, the report envisioned the formation of a “natural axis” of Israel, Turkey, Jordan and a “Hashemite” Iraq serving as “the prelude to a redrawing of the map of the Middle East, which could threaten Syria’s territorial integrity.”

Even a cursory glance at the state of the Middle East since the end of the Iraq war shows that ousting Saddam Hussein achieved the opposite of the report’s stated goals. The idea of a Hashemite restoration in Shi’i-majority Iraq was ridiculously far-fetched, and Iraq’s democratically elected government has — justifiably — greatly improved the Baghdad-Tehran relationship. Makovsky, who wants to reverse this trend, argues that the United States should “declare our support and strong military aid for an eventual Iraqi Kurdish state, once its warring factions unify and improve governance. We could support a federation for the rest of Iraq.”

In Makovsky’s imagination, the new Kurd-less Iraqi federation would presumably wish Erbil well and send it on its way. In reality, another serious Kurdish move toward independence would probably lead to a civil war, as it nearly did in October over the status of Kirkuk. Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi’s first foreign trip after his dramatic capture of Kirkuk was… to Iran. If the United States were to come out in full support of an independent Kurdi­stan, it would almost certainly push the rest of Iraq more firmly into Iran’s orbit. Speaking of Kirkuk, does Makovsky imagine that independent Kurdistan would be given the city and its surrounding oil fields? If yes, then that only increases the chances of a war with Baghdad. If no, then there are serious questions about whether that hypothetical Kurdish state would be economically viable.

REDRAWING THE MAP OF SYRIA?

For Syria, Makovsky says that “we could seek a more ethnically coherent loose confederation or separate states that might balance each other—the Iranian-dominated Alawites along the coast, the Kurds in the northeast, and the Sunni Arabs in the heartland.” He might want to check a recent map of Syria, because while “heartland” is obviously a subjective term, by almost any definition Syria’s “heartland” now belongs to President Bashar al-Assad and his Russian and Iranian allies. This includes the country’s five largest (pre-war) cities: Aleppo, Damascus, Homs, Latakia and Hama. How does Makovsky propose any of that territory be taken from Assad so as to be turned over to “Sunni Arabs,” even in a confederate sense? If the answer is “war,” then his Fox News thinkpiece is burying the lede, to say the least.

Makovsky then recommends that the U.S. strengthen relations with Shi’i-majority Azerbaijan, in order to “demonstrate we are not anti-Shi’i Muslim.” Yes, that should do the trick. Of course, that’s not the only reason:

An added potential benefit of this approach could be a fomenting of tensions within Iran, which has sizable Kurdish and Azeri populations, thereby weakening the radical regime in Tehran.

You might even say that it could threaten Iran’s territorial integrity. Make a Clean Break, if you will.

The dangers of the United States trying to redraw Middle Eastern borders — Makovsky graciously allows that America “cannot dictate the outcomes” but should instead “influence” them—should be obvious. For one thing, there’s the immediate likelihood that attempting to draw new borders would intensify regional instability. For another, there’s little reason to expect that the United States would get the new borders any more “right” than Britain and France did a century ago, particularly not when the process is being managed by the same people who brought us the invasion of Iraq. For still another, the most recent example of such Western “influenced” partitioning isn’t exactly a positive one.

But we can’t leave Makovsky’s piece without mentioning its most jaw-dropping paragraph:

Artificial states have been divided or loosened before with some success, such as the Soviet Union, Yugoslavia and Czechoslovakia, which are all post-WWI formations. Bosnia and Herzegovina have also managed as a confederation.

Czechoslovakia divided peacefully of its own accord. The Soviet Union more or less did likewise, though that dissolution hasn’t been quite so peaceful in recent years. As for Yugoslavia — well, maybe Dr. Makovsky’s definition of “success” is a bit different from most other people’s. To be fair, though, if the breakup of Yugoslavia is his template for the future of the Middle East, this piece makes a lot more sense.

But if Makovsky believes in federalizing existing Middle Eastern states along “ethno-sectarian” lines, why not start with Israel and the occupied territories, a notion that would seem logical to any 21st century mapmaker? After all, occupation of one people by another via a “strong authoritarian hand” — in this case the IDF — would seem to be a prescription for a “colossally failed experiment,” no? Perhaps Makovsky’s experience as a former West Bank settler may make it difficult for him to see the relevance.


Derek Davison is a Washington-based researcher and writer on international affairs and American politics. He previously worked in the Persian Gulf for The RAND Corporation. Jim Lobe served as the Washington, DC correspondent and chief of the Washington bureau of Inter Press Service (IPS) from 1980 to 1985. Copyright © 2017 LobeLog. All rights reserved. 

May 8, 2018 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Timeless or most popular, Wars for Israel | , , , , | 1 Comment

Clean Break II: Iran Hawks Decide to Burn It All Down

By Derek Davison and Jim Lobe | LobeLog | December 27, 2017

The 20th century was rife with partitions, many of them involving European powers carving up colonial possessions in Africa and the Middle East with what often appears to have been little or no concern for local realities. Perhaps the most famous of these free-hand attempts at state creation is the Sykes-Picot Line, whose legacy is very much still with us (and not for the better). But Sykes-Picot is far from the only example of European colonial borders that are still causing problems decades after they were drawn.

But who cares about all of that? It doesn’t seem to be an issue for at least some of America’s anti-Iran hawks. In response to Iran’s rising profile in the Middle East, fueled mostly by a war those neocons ardently championed and the striking ineptitude of the hawks’ new favorite Persian Gulf monarchy, the intellectual heirs to the men who drew those ill-fated borders are proposing, long after it might have done any good, to re-draw them.

Writing for Fox News on December 25, Michael Makovsky—who is no fringe figure, being CEO of the neoconservative Jewish Institute for National Security Affairs (JINSA)—suggests just such a strategy for countering Iranian influence in the Middle East:

Maintaining Syria, Iraq, Lebanon and Yemen in their existing forms is unnatural and serves Iran’s interests. There is nothing sacred about these countries’ borders, which seem to have been drawn by a drunk and blindfolded mapmaker. Indeed, in totally disregarding these borders, ISIS and Iran both have already demonstrated the anachronism and irrelevance of the borders.

Syria, Iraq, Lebanon and Yemen are not nation-states as Americans understand them, but rather post-World War I artificial constructs, mostly created out of the ashes of the Ottoman Empire in a colossally failed experiment by western leaders.

With their deep ethno-sectarian fissures, these four countries have either been held together by a strong authoritarian hand or suffered sectarian carnage.

It is astonishing to read neoconservatives, who have done little else since the 1970s but lobby for exerting American hegemony in the Middle East, decry the results of the exertion of European hegemony in the Middle East. It reads like an artificial intelligence that just briefly verges on full self-awareness before pivoting and falling back to safer ground. It’s particularly rich for Makovsky, whose JINSA predecessors promoted the ouster of two of those “strong authoritarian hands” in former Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein and former Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh, to bemoan one result of their ouster.

But let’s focus on the proposal Makovsky makes: redrawing borders in the Middle East, creating what he calls “loose confederations or new countries with more borders that more naturally conform along sectarian lines,” in order to counter Iran. The proposal strongly resembles recommendations found in “A Clean Break: A New Strategy for Securing the Realm,” a 1996 publication of the Jerusalem-based Institute for Advanced Strategic and Political Studies that was prepared in collaboration with several other neoconservative think tanks—including JINSA.

“A Clean Break,” the conclusion of a task force that included such Likudnik geniuses as Richard Perle, Douglas Feith, and David Wurmser, argued in part that Israel should work with friendly governments in Turkey and Jordan to contain regional threats, particularly coming from Syria. It concluded, among other things, that Israeli leaders should pursue “removing Saddam Hussein from power in Iraq-an important objective in its own right-as a means of foiling Syria’s regional ambitions.” “Syria” in this context serves as a stand-in for “Iran.” Long-term, the report envisioned the formation of a “natural axis” of Israel, Turkey, Jordan, and a “Hashemite” Iraq serving as “the prelude to a redrawing of the map of the Middle East, which could threaten Syria’s territorial integrity.”

Even a cursory glance at the state of the Middle East since the end of the Iraq War shows that ousting Saddam Hussein achieved the opposite of the report’s stated goals. The idea of a Hashemite restoration in Shia-majority Iraq was ridiculously far-fetched, and Iraq’s democratically-elected government has–justifiably–greatly improved the Baghdad-Tehran relationship. Makovsky, who wants to reverse this trend, argues that the United States should “declare our support and strong military aid for an eventual Iraqi Kurdish state, once its warring factions unify and improve governance. We could support a federation for the rest of Iraq.”

In Makovsky’s imagination, the new Kurd-less Iraqi federation would presumably wish Erbil well and send it on its way. In reality, another serious Kurdish move toward independence would probably lead to a civil war, as it nearly did in October over the status of Kirkuk. Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi’s first foreign trip after his dramatic capture of Kirkuk was… to Iran. If the United States were to come out in full support of an independent Kurdistan, it would almost certainly push the rest of Iraq more firmly into Iran’s orbit. Speaking of Kirkuk, does Makovsky imagine that independent Kurdistan would be given the city and its surrounding oil fields? If yes, then that only increases the chances of a war with Baghdad. If no, then there are serious questions about whether that hypothetical Kurdish state would be economically viable.

For Syria, Makovsky says that “we could seek a more ethnically coherent loose confederation or separate states that might balance each other – the Iranian-dominated Alawites along the coast, the Kurds in the northeast, and the Sunni Arabs in the heartland.” He might want to check a recent map of Syria, because while “heartland” is obviously a subjective term, by almost any definition Syria’s “heartland” now belongs to President Basher al-Assad and his Russian and Iranian allies. This includes the country’s five largest (pre-war) cities: Aleppo, Damascus, Homs, Latakia, and Hama. How does Makovsky propose any of that territory be taken from Assad so as to be turned over to “Sunni Arabs,” even in a confederate sense? If the answer is “war,” then his Fox News thinkpiece is burying the lede to say the least.

Makovsky then recommends that the U.S. strengthen relations with Shia-majority Azerbaijan, in order to “demonstrate we are not anti-Shia Muslim.” Yes, that should do the trick. Of course, that’s not the only reason:

An added potential benefit of this approach could be a fomenting of tensions within Iran, which has sizable Kurdish and Azeri populations, thereby weakening the radical regime in Tehran.

You might even say that it could threaten Iran’s territorial integrity. Make a Clean Break, if you will.

The dangers of the United States trying to redraw Middle Eastern borders—Makovsky graciously allows that America “cannot dictate the outcomes” but should instead “influence” them—should be obvious. For one thing, there’s the immediate likelihood that attempting to draw new borders would intensify regional instability. For another, there’s little reason to expect that the United States would get the new borders any more “right” than Britain and France did a century ago, particularly not when the process is being managed by the same people who brought us the invasion of Iraq. For still another, the most recent example of such Western “influenced” partitioning isn’t exactly a positive one.

But we can’t leave Makovsky’s piece without mentioning its most jaw-dropping paragraph (emphasis ours):

Artificial states have been divided or loosened before with some success, such as the Soviet Union, Yugoslavia and Czechoslovakia, which are all post-WWI formations. Bosnia and Herzegovina have also managed as a confederation.

Czechoslovakia divided peacefully of its own accord. The Soviet Union more or less did likewise, though that dissolution hasn’t been quite so peaceful in recent years. As for Yugoslavia—well, maybe Dr. Makovsky’s definition of “success” is a bit different from most other people’s. To be fair, though, if the breakup of Yugoslavia is his template for the future of the Middle East, this piece makes a lot more sense.

But if Makovsky believes in federalizing existing Middle Eastern states along “ethno-sectarian” lines, why not start with Israel and the Occupied Territories, a notion that would seem logical to any 21st century mapmaker? After all, occupation of one people by another via a “strong authoritarian hand”—in this case the IDF—would seem to be a prescription for a “colossally failed experiment,” no? Perhaps Makovsky’s experience as a former West Bank settler may make it difficult for him to see the relevance.

December 29, 2017 Posted by | Illegal Occupation, Timeless or most popular, War Crimes, Wars for Israel | , , , , | Leave a comment

Fighting Israel’s Wars

How the United States military has become Zionized

By Philip Giraldi • Unz Review • November 28, 2017

There has been a report that Special Counsel Robert Mueller is looking into foreign lobbying in Washington while another story relates how his team is investigating the alleged contact of a Donald Trump associate with a Hungarian. Both are part of the ongoing investigation into Russiagate. Unless I am wrong, which happens occasionally, Hungary is a member of the European Union and also of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO). It has relatively free elections and its government changes as a result.

No one but the Mueller commission has considered contact with a Hungarian citizen to be a potential threat to American democracy. But then again, no one has really made the case in any kind of credible fashion that meeting with a Russian is either ipso facto criminal or treasonous, or that Moscow’s media does anything beyond what other state-owned broadcasters tend to do, but you wouldn’t know that from reading the mainstream press or from watching MSNBC and CNN.

An independent observer might well note that there is more than a whiff of hypocrisy in all of this. Case in point, the latest globalist-interventionist-neocon think tank the Alliance to Secure Democracy is currently being funded by a bundle of foreign governments, presumably doing so without any interference from Mueller or from those who run the Foreign Agents Registration desk at the Department of the Treasury.

And one other thing you can bet on is that Mueller will not be looking at the country that actually does interfere in American politics most, which is our best friend in the whole world and greatest ally Israel, the beneficiary of roughly one billion dollars-worth of lobbying carried out by hundreds of full time staff on its behalf.

Punish Israel for corrupting our politicians and media? On the contrary, now that we are officially into the holiday season, a whole bunch of goodies designed to make Benjamin Netanyahu’s eyes sparkle are pending. The highest priority item is the Trump Administration’s cooperation with the Israeli government in a frantic effort to bury a United Nations report that includes a database of all the companies that operate in Israel’s illegal settlements. Also regarding the U.N., Congress is considering a bill that would block U.S. aid to any country that opposes “the position of the United States.” Lest there be any confusion, Ambassador Nikki Haley has made it clear the American “position” would pretty much consist of never criticizing or voting against Israel.

Congress is meanwhile also making a list and checking it twice, looking into the vexing issue of how to make any and all criticism of Israel equate to anti-Semitism as a step forward to turning such activity into a hate crime with actual criminal penalties. The House Judiciary Committee has been holding meetings to try to decide how exactly one might do that without completely jettisoning the First Amendment, which once upon a time was intended to guarantee free speech. On November 8th, nine experts, seven of whom were Jewish, were summoned to address the issue of “codify[ing] a definition of anti-Semitism that incorporates a controversial component addressing attacks on Israel… [as] a necessary means of stemming anti-Semitism on campuses.”

The proposed amendment to the Civil Rights Act would use language being considered for the still pending Anti-Semitism Awareness Act to considerably expand the currently accepted government acceptance of anti-Semitism as “demonization” of Israel and/or its policies. A broader definition would have real world consequences as it would potentially block federal funding for colleges and universities where students are allowed to organize events critical of Israel. Fortunately, the hearing did not produce the result desired by Israel. To their credit, four of the witnesses, all Jewish, opposed expanding the definition of anti-Semitism and even some congressmen uncharacteristically indicated that to do so might be a bridge to far.

Indeed, one might argue that there is a tendency in Washington to see the world and even domestic policies through Israel’s eyes. One might even suggest that the United States government is being progressively Zionized because of the free hand that Israel and its supporters have, which gives them the ability to seek benefits for Israel that they would be unlikely to pursue for the United States. To cite only one example, an Israel Victory Caucus was launched in the House of Representatives in April advocating Israeli defeat of all its neighbors. The keynote speaker at the event, noted Islamophobe Daniel Pipes, explained “Victory means imposing your will on your enemy so he no longer wants to continue to fight,” before demanding “What I want the U.S. government to do is say, ‘Israel, do what you need to do to win your war.’”

Israel has been uniquely successful at imposing its will over Congress and the White House. Every freshman class in Congress, plus spouses, is automatically whisked off for a deluxe all expenses paid propaganda trip to Israel, which is funded by an affiliate of the American Israel Political Action Committee (AIPAC). That is supplemented frequently throughout the year through taxpayer funded CODELS by established politicians to find out the “facts” on what is going on in the Middle East. During congressional recesses Congressmen are sometimes more likely to be found visiting Israel than dealing with problems in their own districts and they routinely return spouting whatever line is being promoted by the Israeli government.

There is also the training of American police in “Israeli methods,” which is funded both by government and foundations set up for that purpose. Less well known is the inroads Israel has made with the American military establishment. Shoshana Bryen, former executive director of the Jewish Institute for National Security Affairs (JINSA) and currently affiliated with the Jewish Policy Center, who has been involved in hosting the indoctrination of U.S. national security personnel, recently described it this way: “I have taken more than 400 American security professionals – primarily retired American Admirals and Generals – to Israel in more than 30 trips. And at the other end of their careers, I have sent more than 500 cadets and midshipmen of our service academies to Israel before they received their commissions. And I can say that they all understood the fundamental and profound principles that guide both the United States and Israel. They don’t always agree with Israel’s politics – or Israel’s defense choices – or any other single aspect of Israeli political, military and social life, but I never found one that didn’t believe in the relationship between Jews and the land of Israel. The United States military, then, is a Zionist institution.”

Last Monday, Colonel Pat Lang, former special ops officer and head of the Defense Humint Service, considered Bryen’s assertion, writing “It’s an open question but I think the answer is probably yes. The U.S. military now seems to be totally focused on Israeli policy goals in Iran, Syria and Iraq… Israel wants Iran neutered and eliminated as a power rival in the Middle East. The putative Iranian nuclear weapons program is just one target of Israeli policy toward Iran. To reach the goal of Morgenthau-style comfort with regard to Iran, Israel wants to destroy Syria and Hizbullah as allies of Iran… The process of conditioning American officers to make them Zionists has been ongoing for a long time. when I came in the Army in 1962, there was little interest in Israel in the officer corps… [The] 1967 war was a watershed. Israel’s total victory had been unexpected by most. Americans are mentally driven by aggressive sports analogies and Israel was a winner. That made a big difference in spite of the repeated day long attacks by the Israeli air force and navy against U.S.S. Liberty, an American SIGINT collector positioned off the Egyptian coast. LBJ suppressed an armed reaction by a U.S. carrier battle group in the area and a subsequent naval investigation. His policy then became one of relatively complete support of Israel. The indoctrination and conditioning program described by Shoshana Bryen began in earnest after that and has carried through to the present under the umbrella of AIPAC and its galaxy of linked organizations especially JINSA. This program has been wildly, incredibly successful. As a result, there is an unthinking willingness among senior, and not so senior American officers to support Israeli policy in Iran, Syria, Lebanon, Palestine and now Saudi Arabia. The handful of M[iddle] E[ast] trained and educated U.S. officers are ignored, treated as technical experts or shoved out the door when they speak up.”

How deeply Israelophilia has been drilled into the American corporate psyche is best illustrated by a recent article that appeared on the National Interest website. The article was written by retired Israeli Colonel Shimon Arad, who apparently has contributed to the site previously, and its thrust is that the United States should only sell military hardware to the Middle East when Israel is satisfied that the sales will not undercut its self-defined military edge. In other words, U.S. defense industries and national security arrangements should be subordinated to Israeli interests and even subject to veto by the Netanyahu government.

Arad’s condescending piece, sub-titled “Israel’s Greatest Fear: An Arms Race Sparked by the F-35,” should be read fully to demonstrate just how arrogant the Israelis have become in dealing with their American puppet. Arad argues that no advanced fighters comparable to what Israel receives for free from the U.S. taxpayer should be sold to any Arab country, no matter how friendly or strategically valuable. Previous pledges that the new F-35 would not be sold to Arabs “played a significant role in [Israel]’s acquiescence to the sale of… advanced… fighters to the Gulf states…” “Acquiescence” is the key word, implying that Israel should by rights have the option to stop such sales by putting pressure on Congress. Arad then goes on to describe how sales to the United Arab Emirates would be a “dangerous precedent,” but he is clearly talking only about Israeli interests as the United States is in no way threatened by such a move. He concludes that “Israel must express its strenuous objection to the release of the F-35 to any and all Gulf and Arab countries.”

In an earlier article, Arad complained about Arab states being sold sophisticated air defenses, presumably because that would make it more difficult for Israel to bomb them. Why an American publication should provide a pulpit to an Israeli who is promoting a narrowly construed Israeli interest that differs significantly from the actual interests of the United States is not completely clear. The site’s readers apparently agreed with that observation in that most of the comments were highly critical both of Arad and of Israel. Someone should remind the colonel that America’s three major military concentrations in the Middle East – five bases in Kuwait, Al-Udeid Airbase in Qatar, and the Fifth-Fleet home base and Naval Central Command in Bahrain – are all in Arab countries that have accommodated Washington in ways that Israel never has. To place them on a list of countries that are somehow always suspect just because Israel perceives nearly all Muslims as enemies, is not in America’s own interest, but this has been the unfortunate pattern in the lopsided relationship prevailing between Washington and Tel Aviv.

The infiltration by little Israel of key sectors of the bureaucracy of a seemingly oblivious giant United States is extraordinary by any measure, but it has been brought about by a highly focused and well-funded powerful domestic lobby that has remarkable access both to the political class and to the media. As Admiral Thomas Moorer, former chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff once put it, “No American president can stand up to Israel.” He should have added Congress and even the Pentagon to his indictment but what he said is, unfortunately, truer now than it was when he made the comment back in 1997.

November 28, 2017 Posted by | Corruption, Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Russophobia, Timeless or most popular, Wars for Israel | , , , , | 2 Comments

America’s Militarized Police

Made in Israel?

By Philip Giraldi • Unz Review • July 25, 2017

The horrific execution by police of an Australian woman in her pajamas that took place last week in Minneapolis has again produced a torrent of criticism over killings initiated by law enforcement in situations in which the officers are in no way threatened. America has always been a violent place relative to much of the rest of the world, but even so there has been a noticeable shift in how, since the trauma of 9/11, some policemen believe themselves to be superior to and detached from the society they are supposed to be protecting. And the public is reciprocating, seeing the police frequently as a force that is no longer there to serve the people and instead something that should be feared. Even in the upper middle class predominantly white county that I live in, residents not infrequently discuss the increasingly visible and aggressive police presence. It is widely believed that arguing with cops or showing even the slightest attitude in contacts with them is done at one’s peril.

Even in low crime parts of the country, the police are able to deploy fully armed and equipped swat teams that are more military than civilian in their threatening demeanor as well in the body armor and weapons they carry. Many cities and counties now have surplus military armored vans for crowd control even if they have no crowds. Armed drones are increasingly becoming part of the law enforcement arsenal and it sometimes appears as if the police are copying the military as a model of “how to do it.”

The various levels of government that make up the United States seem to be preparing for some kind of insurrection, which may indeed be the case somewhere down the road if the frustrations of the public are not somehow dealt with. But there is another factor that has, in my opinion, become a key element in the militarization of the police in the United States. That would be the role of the security organs of the state of Israel in training American cops, a lucrative business that has developed since 9/11 and which inter alia gives the “students” a whole different perspective on the connection of the police with those who are being policed, making the relationship much more one of an occupier and the occupied.

The engagement of American police forces with Israeli security services began modestly enough in the wake of 9/11. The panic response in the United States to a major terrorist act led to a search for resources to confront what was perceived as a new type of threat that normal law-and-order training did not address.

Israel, which, in its current occupation of much of Palestine and the Golan Heights as well as former stints in Gaza, southern Lebanon and Sinai, admittedly has considerable experience in dealing with the resistance to its expansion manifested as what it describes as terrorism. Jewish organizations in the United States dedicated to providing cover for Israeli’s bad behavior, saw an opportunity to get their hooks into a sizable and respected community within the U.S. that was ripe for conversion to the Israeli point of view, so they began funding “exchanges.”

Since 2002 there have been hundreds of all-expenses-paid trips including officers from every major American city as well as state and local police departments. Some have been sponsored by the American Jewish Committee (AJC) and the Jewish Institute for National Security Affairs (JINSA). The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) has also been directly funding trips since 2008, explaining that “As a people living under constant threat of attack, the Israelis are leading experts in security enforcement and response strategies.” The intent? To “learn” and “draw from the latest developments” so the American cops can “bring these methods back home to implement in their communities.”

AIPAC has several pages in its website dedicated to security cooperation between the two countries. It asks “Did you know? In May 2010, 50 retired Generals and Admirals wrote to President Obama, highlighting the value of U.S. Israeli cooperation.” It goes on to cite an Alabama sheriff who enthuses that “There is no other country [Israel] that shares the same values and overarching goal to allow others to live in peace.” Regarding airport security, it also quotes a U.S. “security expert” who states “We should move even closer to an Israeli model where there’s more engagement with passengers… We’ve just started to do that at TSA…” Indeed. That’s called profiling and pre-boarding interrogations.

Even the federal government has gotten onto the Israel bandwagon, perhaps not a surprise given the number of Israel Firsters in Congress. In 2003, the Department of Homeland Security established a special Office of International Affairs to “institutionalize the relationship between Israeli and American security officials.” The New York City Police Department has a branch in Israel and carries out frequent exchanges.

It should be noted from the git-go that Israel is no more knowledgeable about possible responses to acts of terror than is anyone else. The techniques employed to create physical barriers, to develop sources for intelligence gathering, and to train in tactical responses are quite familiar to anyone who has studied modern-style terrorism since it emerged in Western Europe in the 1970s.

Most countries that have a high or even moderate risk level deriving from terrorists, either domestic or foreign, have recruited and trained special police and paramilitary forces that are familiar with the basic techniques and are quite capable of responding. Ironically, even though the United States government and local police forces have tended to look at the “real pro” Israelis for guidance, state of the art resources for learning about how to deal with terror are available right here at home. JSOC has teams that are every bit as effective – and lethal – as anything the Israelis can muster and the CIA and FBI together know far more about terrorists and how they behave than do the ideologically driven Mossad and Shin Beth.

The American policemen who go on the “exchanges” are probably only dimly aware that what they are being shown is part of Israel’s military justice system, which has nothing to do with Israeli criminals, but instead is designed to keep the lid on the millions of Palestinians who live in what has become a virtual outdoor prison camp. It is an apartheid police state that uses deadly force as a form of crowd control. And the Palestinian former residents of the lands Israel now holds are the “terrorists” that Israel is protecting itself against.

You can bet that the American guests for their part clearly do not realize that they are being trained as prison guards and you also can be sure that they never catch so much as a glimpse of the 300 child prisoners that Israel continues to hold without charges.

Israel’s reputation for “dealing with” terrorism has in any event been glamorized by the Israel-friendly media and entertainment industry while also being promoted by Jewish organizations. It has meant in practical terms that many of the contract security firms operating at airports in the United States and Europe are Israeli. They have also infiltrated state Homeland Security agencies and corporate security in the U.S. Many of the Israeli companies with offices in the United States work closely with Mossad and might reasonably be considered arms of the Israeli government.

Where Israel really excels is in its willingness to kill large numbers of Arabs of all ages and genders using the excuse that they are terrorists. It does so with impunity because Israeli courts almost never hold the army and police accountable for whatever they do. It might reasonably be suggested that when American police officers go through their training in Israel they acquire at least a bit of that attitude from their instructors.

Recognizing that Israel is not exactly a model to be emulated when it comes to the human rights of its Palestinian victims, there is an alternative viewpoint which suggests that American law enforcement might just be learning the wrong things when it travels to Israel. Amnesty International asks “With Whom are Many U.S. Police Departments Training? With Chronic Human Rights Violator Israel.” It notes that last August when the Department of Justice documented numerous violations by the Baltimore Police Department the report failed to mention that policemen from that city had received training in Israel.

Amnesty makes clear what we are dealing with when our policemen are being trained – “… military, security and police systems that have racked up documented human rights violations for years… carrying out extrajudicial executions and other unlawful killings, using ill treatment and torture (even against children). Suppression of freedom of expressions/association, including through government surveillance, and excessive use of force against peaceful protesters.”

And actually, it is worse than that. The American visitors will be welcomed to contemplate the Potemkin village miracle of a democratic, multicultural, inclusive, clever Israel. They will not be allowed to see how the soldiers training them, representatives of “the most moral army in the world,” force Palestinian women to give birth at military checkpoints and watch their babies die, shoot Palestinian teenagers as they are running away for throwing stones, drag men and women out of their beds and kill them while terrorizing their children and dragging them off to jail during midnight raids.

Amnesty’s article documents many of the abuses by Israeli security forces and concludes that using “Public or private funds spent to train our domestic police in Israel should concern all of us. Many of the abuses [in the U.S.] parallel violations by Israeli military, security and police officials.” I would also add that the training provided by JINSA, ADL and the AJC is also partly on the American taxpayers’ dime as the organizations are all tax exempt.

Finally, Israel’s ability to market its state sponsored brutality has even become a form of light entertainment. A company in Israel called Caliber 3 that was set up by a reserve colonel in the Israeli army is offering what has been described as a two hour “boot camp” counter-terrorism experience. It includes a life size target consisting of a man in Arab attire holding a cell phone. The mostly Jewish American audience ponders if he should be shot, but the instructors eventually intervene and declare that he does not quite meet the standard for being killed. Visitors are also treated to simulations of Israeli commandos taking down terrorists and can even shoot live rounds from a semi-automatic weapon at a firing range. Ironically, the Caliber 3 gated compound camp is located in the Gush Etzion settlement bloc on the West Bank, land that was stolen from the Palestinians.

July 25, 2017 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism | , , , , , | 1 Comment

US Air Force Seeking Nominations for JINSA ‘Grateful Nation’ Award

By Richard Edmondson | Fig Trees and Vineyards | March 31, 2017

JINSA–the letters stand for “Jewish Institute for National Security Affairs.” Officially it’s a think tank, although basically what it boils down to is another pro-Israel lobby group–and like AIPAC, it has offices in Washington. Why would a group like this be handing out awards to US military personnel?

Is JINSA awarding Americans for fighting wars for Israel? Or are they maybe trying to recognize those US soldiers who do the best job training terrorists? These are some of the thoughts that went through my head when I came across the story below. According to JINSA’s website, the “Grateful Nation” award is “presented annually to six young heroes recognized for having distinguished themselves through superior conduct in the War on Terrorism.” The war on terrorism or the war for terrorism?

Additionally, JINSA describes itself as being “dedicated to educating Congressional, military and civilian national security decision-makers on American defense and strategic interests, primarily in the Middle East, the cornerstone of which is a robust U.S.-Israeli security cooperation. JINSA believes that a strong American military and national security posture is the best guarantor of peace and the survival of our values and civilization.”

This is also, by the way, the same organization responsible for arranging free trips to Israel for US police officers to undergo training, a program that has been referred to as “the Israelification of America’s security apparatus.” At any rate, the following article, rather brief and succinct as it is, appeared two days ago on a US Air Force website.

AF Seeks 2017 JINSA Grateful Nation Award Nominees

March 31, 2017 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Militarism, Timeless or most popular, Wars for Israel | , , , | Leave a comment

Neocons as a Figment of Imagination

Criticizing their thuggery is anti-Semitism?

By Philip Giraldi • Unz Review • March 21, 2017

We have a president who is belligerent towards Iran, who is sending “boots on the ground” to fight ISIS, who loves Israel passionately and who is increasing already bloated defense budgets. If one were a neoconservative, what is there not to like, yet neocons in the media and ensconced comfortably in their multitude of think tanks hate Donald Trump. I suspect it comes down to three reasons. First, it is because Trump knows who was sticking the knife in his back during his campaign in 2016 and he has neither forgiven nor hired them. Nor does he pay any attention to their bleating, denying them the status that they think they deserve because of their self-promoted foreign policy brilliance.

And second, Trump persists in his desire to “do business” with Russia. The predominantly Jewish neocons always imagine the thunder of hooves of approaching Cossacks preparing to engage in pogroms whenever they hear the word Russia. And this is particularly true of Vladimir Putin’s regime, which is Holy Russia revived. When not musing over how it is always 1938 and one is in Munich, neocons are nearly as unsettled when they think it is 1905 in Odessa.

The third reason, linked to number two, is that having a plausible and dangerous enemy like Russia on tap keeps the cash flowing from defense industries to the foundations and think tanks that the neocons nest in when they are not running the Pentagon and National Security Council. Follow the money. So it is all about self-interest combined with tribal memory: money, status and a visceral hatred of Russia.

The hatred of Trump runs so deep that a leading neocon Bill Kristol actually tweeted that he would prefer a country run by bureaucrats and special interests rather than the current constitutional arrangement. The neocon vendetta was as well neatly summed up in two recent articles by Max Boot. The first is entitled “Trump knows the Feds are closing in on him” and the second is “WikiLeaks has joined the Trump Administration.” In the former piece Boot asserts that “Trump’s recent tweets aren’t just conspiratorial gibberish—they’re the erratic ravings of a guilty conscience” and in the latter, that “The anti-American WikiLeaks has become the preferred intelligence service for a conspiracy-addled White House.”

Now, who is Max Boot and why should anyone care what he writes? Russian-born, Max entered the United States with his family through a special visa exemption under the 1975 Jackson-Vanik Amendment even though they were not notably persecuted and only had to prove that they were Jewish. Jackson-Vanik was one of the first public assertions of neoconism, having reportedly been drafted in the office of Senator Henry Jackson by no less than Richard Perle and Ben Wattenberg as a form of affirmative action for Russian Jews. As refugees instead of immigrants, the new arrivals received welfare, health insurance, job placement, English language classes, and the opportunity to apply for U.S. citizenship after only five years. Max went to college at Berkeley and received an M.A. from Yale.

Boot, a foreign policy adviser to Mitt Romney in 2012, networked his way up the neocon ladder, including writing for The Weekly Standard, Commentary, The Wall Street Journal and The Washington Post. He was a member of the neocon incubator Project for a New American Century and now sits on the heavily neocon Council on Foreign Relations. Boot characteristically has never served in the U.S. military but likes war a lot. In 2012 he co-authored “5 Reasons to Intervene in Syria Now.” He is a reliable Russia and Putin basher.

Max Boot’s articles are smears of Donald Trump from top to bottom. The “closing in” piece calls for establishment of a special counsel to investigate every aspect of the Trump Team/Russian relationship. Along the way, it makes its case to come to that conclusion by accepting every single worst case scenario regarding Trump as true. Yes, per Boot “Putin was intervening in the presidential election to help Trump.” And President Barack Obama could not possibly have “interfered with the lawful workings of the FBI.” As is always the case, not one shred of evidence is produced to demonstrate that anyone associated with Donald Trump somehow became a Russian useful idiot, but Boot assumes that the White House is now being run out of the Kremlin.

Max is certainly fun to read but on a more serious note, the National Review is working hard to make us forget about employing the expression “neocon” because it is apparently rarely understood by the people who use the term. Plus its implied meaning is anti-Semitic in nature, something that David Brooks in an article pretty much denying that neocons really exist suggested thirteen years ago when he postulated that it was shorthand for “Jewish conservative.”

National Review actually searched hard to find a gentile who could write the piece, one Kevin D. Williamson, who is described as a “roving correspondent” for the magazine. His article is entitled “Word Games: The Right Discovers the Deep State.” Williamson begins by observing that using “neocon” disparagingly in the post-9/11 context acts either “as a kind of catalyst enabling a political reaction that revived a great many stupid and ugly myths about Jewish bankers orchestrating wars for profit…” or serves as a standby expression for a “Jew with politics I don’t like.”

Interestingly, I have never heard the “Jewish bankers” theory or disparagement of Jewish “politics” from the many responsible critics who have been dismayed by the aberrant U.S. foreign policy that has evolved since 2001. I don’t know how much money Goldman Sachs has made since the World Trade Center went down and that is not really the issue, nor is the fact that Jews overwhelmingly vote Democratic, which is a party that I don’t particularly like. Williamson dodges the increasingly held view that America slid into the abyss when Washington declared war on the entire world and invaded Iraq based on a tissue of lies, in large part to benefit Israel, which is what matters and why the enabling role of the neocons is important.

And one might reasonably argue that U.S. policy since that time has nearly always deferred to Israeli interests, most recently declaring its prime mission at the U.N. to be protecting Israel, then acting on that premise by forcing the resignation of a senior official who had prepared a report critical of Israel’s “apartheid” regime. I recognize that relatively few American Jews are neocons and that many American Jews are in the forefront in resistance to Israel’s inhumane policies, but the reality is that nearly all neocons are Jewish. And they are in your face every time you turn on the television or pick up a newspaper. Abrasive and abusive Professor Alan Dershowitz recently proclaimed that Jews should never apologize for Jewish power, saying that it is deserved and granted by God, but I for one think it is past time for a little pushback from the rest of us to make Washington protect American interests instead of those of Israel.

The neocon cult has been behind the promotion of Israel as well as the serial foreign policy misadventures since 2001. Do the names Perle, Feith, Wolfowitz, Abrams, Edelman, Ledeen, Senor, Libby and Nuland in and around the government as well as a host of others in think tanks and lobbies like AIPAC, AEI, WINEP, PNAC, FPI, FDD, JINSA and Hudson ring a bell? And do the loud voices in the media to include Judith Miller, Robert Kaplan, Charles Krauthammer, Jennifer Rubin, Fred Hiatt, Bret Stephens, Bill Kristol, the Kagans and the Podhoretzes, as well as the entire Washington Post and Wall Street Journal editorial pages, suggest any connivance?

They are all Jews and many are connected in terms of their careers, which were heavily networked from the inside to advance them up the ladder, often to include moving between government and lucrative think tank and academic positions. They mostly self-identify as neoconservatives and all share some significant traits, notably extreme dedication to Israel and embrace of the doctrine that the U.S. should not be shy about using military force, so it is interesting to learn from Williamson that they really do not constitute a cohesive group with shared values and interests as well as excellent access to the media and the levers of power. When did you last see an “expert” on the Middle East on television who was not Jewish?

Having made his pithy comments and dismissed neoconservatism-phobes as bigots, Williamson then wanders off subject into the Deep State, which, like neoconism apparently is some kind of urban legend being propagated by the poorly informed, whom these days he identifies as Trump supporters. He argues that the entities that are frequently cited as the Deep State, including the neocons, actually have quite divergent interests and it is unlikely that those interests should become “identical or aligned” to enable running of the country in an essentially clandestine fashion.

It is perhaps inevitable that Williamson is confused as he does not recognize how the American Deep State differs from that in most other countries – it is perhaps better described as the Establishment. Unlike in places like Turkey, it operates largely out in the open and ostensibly legally along a New York-Washington axis that constantly revitalizes itself through the revolving door allowing the entry of politicians and high government officials who create and enforce the legislation that benefits Deep State interests. Its components do indeed have different motives, but they come together in preserving the status quo, which benefits all parties, while little dissent comes from the Fourth Estate as the process plays out, since much of the media and many of the proliferating Washington think tanks that provide Deep State “intellectual” credibility are also part of the same malignancy. And yes, quite a bit of today’s Establishment is Jewish, most particularly financial and legal services, the think tanks, and academia. Many of them support or are part of the neocon persuasion and frequently also of the Israel Lobby.

The existence of a Deep State means that many issues that impact on the citizenry never are discussed as part of the political process, leading to jokes that the United States has only one political party with two wings. Issues like the relationship with Israel, though hotly debated by some of the public, are never really debated and are dealt with by consensus crafted by the politicians and the media. Significant policies like those relating to war and peace, healthcare and immigration were rarely seriously challenged prior to Trump because there is a broad agreement regarding what the Establishment will allow to take place. That is how the Deep State operates.

When it comes to foreign and national security policy the neocons are most definitely an integral part of the Deep State, using money and access to politicians to influence what is taking place without anyone seriously challenging their role. They are an essential cog in a system that is completely corrupt: it exists to sell out the public interest, and includes both major political parties as well as government officials. And it is so successful because it wins no matter who is in power, by creating bipartisan-supported money pits within the system. Monetizing the completely unnecessary and hideously expensive global war on terror benefits the senior government officials, beltway industries, and financial services that feed off it. Because it is essential to keep the money flowing, the Deep State persists in promoting policies that enrich its constituencies but otherwise make no sense, to include funding the unending and unwinnable wars currently enjoying marquee status in Iraq, Syria and Afghanistan and the gift of $38 billion to Israel.

Max Boot spews the kind of bile that is commonly seen or heard when the neocons zero in on their enemies. The National Review meanwhile provides cover for Max and others by suggesting that only anti-Semites or the demented could possibly have it in for neoconservatives or be wary of zany concepts like a Deep State. Together they generate the fog that makes it impossible to challenge certain aspects of the status quo. Maybe, just maybe, what Donald Trump has been saying about his predecessor’s Deep State inspired machinations are true. And just possibly there is a largely Jewish cabal within that Deep State, call it what you will, that works very hard behind the scenes to favor Israel while also pushing for a state of perpetual war, from which it benefits personally. I know that thinking that we Americans are on the receiving end of a vast and very effective conspiracy makes many uneasy, but history has taught us that sometimes our worst nightmares are actually true.

March 21, 2017 Posted by | Mainstream Media, Warmongering, Timeless or most popular, Wars for Israel | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Cheerleading for Israel

Everyone’s doing it

Bernard Henry Levi Libya

By Philip Giraldi • Unz Review • March 7, 2017

Those of us who voted for Donald Trump in hopes that he would turn out to be the peace candidate are facing disappointment. He has increased the already bloated military budget by $54 billion and has appointed an outspokenly anti-Russian and anti-Iranian active duty general as his National Security Advisor. A retired general with pretty much the same views heads the Pentagon. President Trump meanwhile vows to “extinguish” ISIS without presenting any plan regarding how exactly that might be accomplished.

The most important objective of all, resetting with Moscow to avoid World War 3, is in reverse gear, with the appointment of Fiona Hill, a critic of Vladimir Putin, as Russian specialist at the National Security Council. Meanwhile, our clueless United Nations Ambassador calls for Russia to withdraw from Crimea, where 58% of the population is Russian and only 24% is Ukrainian. Reports circulating in Washington suggest that the one phone call between Trump and Putin was a disaster, with the U.S. president demanding an end to the New START nuclear weapons reduction treaty, which the Kremlin wants to renew, before going off on a tangential monologue about his unexpected electoral victory.

In fact, even though the individual neocons have largely been outed from the foreign and security policy positions they once dominated it would not be completely inappropriate to suggest that their legacy of military interventionism lives on in terms of what the Trump administration has been so far promoting to keep America “safe.” Where all of this will go is anyone’s guess.

But if there is one constant in all of this it is the bright shining beacon of Israel, with Trump recently enthusing over the “unbreakable” bond between the two countries. One hopes that he misspoke and really meant “unbearable” or even “unspeakable” but it is clear from other indications that The Donald has succumbed to the inevitable Washington groupthink regarding America’s greatest ally and best friend in the whole wide world.

On Sunday New York Governor Andrew Cuomo met with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to discuss “trade and security issues” without anyone complaining that he was in violation of the Logan Act, which apparently only applies if you are talking to Russians. And a congressional delegation is in Israel right now studying the feasibility of moving the U.S. Embassy to Jerusalem, which most foreign policy pundits consider to be a very bad idea. Meanwhile at the United Nations, the U.S. has blocked the appointment of former Palestinian prime minister Salam Fayyad as special representative to Libya. U.S. Ambassador Nikki Haley explained the veto, saying irrelevantly “For too long the U.N. has been unfairly biased in favor of the Palestinian Authority to the detriment of our allies in Israel. The United States does not currently recognize a Palestinian state or support the signal this appointment would send within the United Nations.”

Ambassador Haley has also denounced the international body in general terms, stating that she was “underscore[ing] the ironclad support of the United States for Israel,” adding that “I am here to emphasize that United States is determined to stand up to the U.N.’s anti-Israel bias.” And if anyone failed to understand, on March 1st, U.S. envoy to the U.N. Human Rights Council in Geneva Erin Barclay told the group that it must drop its “obsession with Israel” or risk Washington withdrawing from the organization. The suggestion that the U.S. might consider departing came, incidentally, directly from Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who proposed such action to Donald Trump to “delegitimize” the U.N. body.

It is ironic that in the midst of a media and congressional feeding frenzy on foreign interference in the U.S., the one country in the world that consistently leads Washington by the nose is immune from criticism. The subservient role dutifully played by every U.S. president since JFK when dealing with Tel Aviv has resulted in defining United States national interests in terms of Israeli perceptions. The real irony is that even though Trump is giving the Israelis everything they want and is bowing to the Israel Lobby and Jewish groups at every opportunity, it is still not enough. It is never enough. That is because the neoconservatives, who are mostly Jewish and themselves complete Israel-firsters, hate him, having overwhelmingly favored Hillary Clinton as president due to their conviction that she would be the more aggressive president. They now believe that if they succeed in forcing Trump’s resignation or impeachment they will return to power in whatever new government formulation is put in place, so they continue to pile on.

Israel’s friends characteristically either run or have the ear of the media and they are supported by a formidable Washington based lobbying machine to get their point across. Whenever anything happens in the Middle East or elsewhere that is related to Israel’s perceived interests the machine goes to work with multiple position papers presented to every congressional office the next morning by runners from AIPAC, AEI, FPI, WINEP, JINSA and FDD. No one else has the clout of the Israel Lobby.

And Trump is also being battered by Jewish interests coming from the political left. France’s greatest living poseur-hypocrite Bernard-Henri Levy, described as a “philosopher, filmmaker and activist,” has hammered Trump twice recently, first in The New York Times on January 19th. Levy, who has described the brutal Israel Defense Forces as “a democratic army, which asks itself so many moral questions” and who was a war-on-Libya cheerleader, warns that Trump is a threat to all American Jews. Why? Because even though he has showered benefits on Israel his love for the Jewish people is “insufficient.” Levy explains, “This love is precisely what is required of an American president in dealings affecting Israel.”

The reader might well be astonished by the chutzpah of Levy in demanding love on top of the $38 billion already in the pipeline and wonder even more why the New York Times would print such garbage. But the French whiz kid does not really explain his remark, instead going on to denounce the “betrayal” of Israel by President Barack Obama at the United Nations before explaining that as Trump is “deeply unpopular” it would not do for American Jews to embrace him closely even if it appears he is doing good things for Israel. And Levy provides “evidence” that Trump might not be what he seems, citing inter alia his speech before the Republican Jewish Coalition in which he said he didn’t need their money. Levy sees this as a precursor to genuine, full blooded anti-Semitism, and speculates that Trump will take revenge against Jews to show “that he is indeed smarter than they are.” Why would he do that? Because he “respects only power, money and the perquisites of the palace.”

Levy’s second foray second foray, on CNN a month later, took Trump to task for his “incredible slip” on January 27th, Holocaust Remembrance Day, when he did not single out Jewish victims of Nazi crimes and instead cited all of those exterminated by the Germans. For Levy, Jewish deaths are intrinsically more memorable and valuable than those of others and the failure to grant them special status is a “tell-tale trope of Holocaust deniers” and a “hallmark of the new anti-Semitism.”

Bernard-Henri goes on to cite more evidence of Trump’s closet anti-Semitism, including the assertion that he has failed to address the reality of “Jewish children who go to school full of fear.” While it is possible to dismiss Levy as a completely self-serving bullshit artist who badly needs a haircut and a bath, he is far from alone. Also on the left there is the renowned Professor Alan Dershowitz of Harvard University.

Dershowitz, threatening to leave the Democratic Party if it elected Keith Ellison chair of the party’s central committee, appeared frequently on television and in the print media claiming that Ellison was an enemy of Israel and of the Jewish people. The threat to leave the Democrats produced numerous jokes directed at the abrasive and unpopular lawyer somewhat akin to those crafted at the expense of the Hollywood celebrities who promised to leave the country if Donald Trump were elected president. Unfortunately, I have to note that neither Dershowitz nor Barbra Streisand has yet departed.

Ellison was the preferred candidate of the Bernie Sanders liberal wing of the party and initial opinion polls suggested that he would likely win the position. While Dershowitz’s bombast could be regarded with some amusement, there was another, darker side to the campaign to sideline Ellison, who is black, a Muslim and not openly hostile to the Palestinians. This last attribute inevitably made it possible to start a whispering campaign labeling him as anti-Semitic and a number of Jewish Democratic fundraisers, to include Israeli Haim Saban of Hillary Clinton fame, privately made it known that they would end their donations to the party if Ellison were elected. Barack Obama and the Clintons also piled on, even working the phones to stop Ellison.

When Ellison lost in a close result, Dershowitz announced that he would not be leaving the party after all because the result was a “victory in the war against bigotry, anti-Semitism, [and] the anti-Israel push of the hard left within the Democratic Party.” As evidence of Ellison’s anti-Israel sentiment Dershowitz cited the congressman’s vote against funding Iron Dome, which is the Israel missile defense system. “Can you imagine any reasonable person voting against a missile system designed to protect innocent civilians against terrorist rocket attacks?”

Indeed Dersh, but maybe the Israelis should be paying for it, not the American taxpayer, which is actually the crux of the matter. I for one am tired of the perpetual whining of Alan Dershowitz and international professional Jews like Bernard-Henri Levi, who is frequently in the U.S. doing richly rewarded speaking tours on the so-called “Synagogue circuit.” And someone should wake U.N Ambassador Nikki Haley up to the fact that her job is to take care of the American people, not Israel. Quite frankly, if these folks are so much in love with Israel they should go live there and leave the rest of us as well as the U.S. Treasury alone.

If we are heading into yet another round of Israel-centric foreign policy we will be inevitably involved in new wars, starting with Iran which has always been Netanyahu’s enemy of choice. And then there is Syria, where the Israelis would prefer a continuation of chaos, presumably carried out by Washington which can pay the bills and take the casualties. As Bernard-Henri Levy has made clear and the Talmud asserts, Jewish lives are more important than those of gentiles, so it is fit and proper that Americans should fight and die to make sure that Israel might prosper.

March 7, 2017 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Militarism, Timeless or most popular, Wars for Israel | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

US War Theories Target Dissenters

By Todd E. Pierce | Consortium News | September 12, 2015

When the U.S. Department of Defense published a new Law of War Manual (LOW) this past summer, editorialists at the New York Times sat up and took notice. Their concern was that the manual stated that journalists could be deemed “unprivileged belligerents.” The editorial explained that as a legal term “that applies to fighters that are afforded fewer protections than the declared combatants in a war.” In fact, it is far more insidious than that innocuous description.

Here is the manual’s definition: “‘Unlawful combatants’ or ‘unprivileged belligerents’ are persons who, by engaging in hostilities, have incurred one or more of the corresponding liabilities of combatant status (e.g., being made the object of attack and subject to detention), but who are not entitled to any of the distinct privileges of combatant status (e.g., combatant immunity and POW status).”

The key phrase here is “being made the object of attack.” For slow-witted New York Times editorialists, that means journalists can be killed as can any enemy soldier in wartime. “Subject to detention” means a journalist deemed an unprivileged belligerent will be put into military detention if captured. As with any enemy belligerent, however, if “capture is not feasible,” they would be killed if possible, by drone perhaps if in a foreign country.

Currently, most U.S. captives deemed “unprivileged belligerents” are imprisoned in Guantanamo although some may be held in Afghanistan. It must be noted that the United States deems as an “unprivileged belligerent” anyone they target for capture or choose to kill.

That the New York Times’ concern only arose with publication of the new LOW manual suggests they may have been in a deep sleep since 9/11 as the Department of Defense (DOD) has openly worked to impose limitations on information sharing and news gathering since that event gave them a pretext. It is now a well-established pattern of the U.S. government to suppress rights guaranteed by the First Amendment whenever they can get by with it, as was seen with the New York Times own James Risen.

But the New York Times colluded with the CIA in censoring Risen’s reporting. Furthermore, they seemed to have ignored the U.S. government’s momentous argument of the unlimited power of the President to target journalists and activists for “expressive activities,” as the Department of Justice stated in the case of Hedges v. Obama, as described below.

It has frequently been noted there’s been an ongoing “war” against journalists since 9/11. The new DOD Law of War manual makes that official and potentially takes it to the highest level of conflict. While expressing concern, the Times’ editorialist does not seem to realize or care how ominous it is that the DOD now openly declares that journalists may be deemed “unprivileged belligerents,” unlawful combatants, as the DOD manual provides, instead of hiding the fact in coded language as done since 2001. Inherent to those classifications is that they represent the “enemy” and can be killed by U.S. officials.

That will come as no surprise to those acquainted with the foreign journalists who have been targeted and killed by drones in places such as Pakistan. Nor will it surprise Sami al-Hajj, the Al Jazeera journalist who was held in Guantanamo for years. But now it is clear that the same fate could be in store for U.S. journalists.

That coded language is embedded in the claim by Military Commissions prosecutors and the Justice Department that there is a “U.S. domestic common law of war.” What they claim is entirely based upon martial law orders of the Civil War and the military’s orders to remove Japanese-Americans from the their homes on the West Coast in World War II. All the cases they rely on for a “domestic law of war” today were judicially condemned during or almost immediately after the wars in which they were a part of.

U.S. Domestic Common Law of War

U.S. Military Commissions Chief Prosecutor Brig. General Mark Martins and his staff invented what they call the “U.S. domestic common law of war” in filings to the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals. That invention consists only of the martial law precedents of the U.S. Civil War and the removal of the Japanese-Americans from the West Coast at the direction of General DeWitt. Both were later seen as examples of military despotism.

The American people have been inured by a deliberate effort of the U.S. military to accept invocation of the law of war as a talisman to permit any act by officials which would have been known as illegal before 9/11. But as the manual states: “Although the law of war is generally viewed as ‘prohibitive law,’ in some respects, especially in the context of domestic law, the law of war may be viewed as permissive or even as a source of authority. For example, the principle of military necessity in the customary law of war may be viewed as justifying or permitting certain acts.” (Emphasis added.)

“Military necessity” was the law of war basis for removal of the Japanese-Americans. Military necessity though indisputably a part of the law of war is a totalitarian precept when applied to a civilian population.

The LOW manual explains the object of war by quoting George H. Aldrich, Deputy Legal Adviser to the U.S. Department of State during the Vietnam War. He wrote of “a general acceptance of the view that modern war is aimed not merely at the enemy’s military forces but at the enemy’s willingness and ability to pursue its war aims. . . . In Viet-Nam political, rather than military, objectives were even more dominant. Both sides had as their goal not the destruction of the other’s military forces but the destruction of the will to continue the struggle.”

The “destruction of the will” of the adversary is always the object of war, according to Clausewitz and adopted by the U.S. military. But this has a totalitarian element to it; the adversary’s reciprocal object is to destroy our will. Consequently, “our” will must be protected by suppressing any dissent which could harm morale and the population’s willingness to “continue the struggle.”

That was the foundational belief underlying martial law during the Civil War. The Constitution was an obstacle again to suppressing dissent to a degree after the Civil War, but with the invention of a U.S. domestic common law of war and legalistic word play, this obstacle has once again been removed as the Justice Department argued in Hedges v. Obama.

The claim of being at war with internal and external enemies is always made by totalitarian states to justify their suppression of speech and a free press through repression. For a brief period in U.S. history, the Civil War, the U.S. military adopted military repression through martial law to suppress any dissent to its war practices.

Martial law was declared throughout the Union States, the North, on Aug. 8, 1862, by Secretary of War Edwin M. Stanton, at the request of President Abraham Lincoln. Orders were published to “arrest and imprison” any persons “discouraging volunteer enlistments” or “giving aid and comfort to the enemy” or for “any other disloyal practice.” A military commission would try the prisoners, and a second order “suspended” the writ of habeas corpus in their cases.

Martial law was more formally declared on Sept. 24, 1862, by President Lincoln himself in addition to suspending the writ of habeas corpus. Lieber’s Code was then prepared as the order giving effect to martial law. Contrary to how it is presented by the U.S. Army and credulous human rights commentators, Lieber’s Code was primarily a harsh martial law order with Prussian militarist law of war concepts introduced to the U.S. to criminalize any expressions of dissent as “war treason.”

Thus, Col. William Winthrop explained that among the greater number of individuals who were brought to trial before the military commissions during the Civil War, the offenses included “hostile or disloyal acts, or publications or declarations calculated to excite opposition to the federal government or sympathy with the enemy, etc.”

Whiting’s Guidance

Solicitor of the Department of War during the Civil War, William Whiting, gave legal guidance to the Union Commanders for enforcement of martial law. The “guidebook” was his own War Powers of the President. This book could have been used by any militaristic and totalitarian regime, which in fact it was as it was derived from authoritarian principles of martial law from Prussia. Those authoritarian principles remained in force under Prussia’s successor state, Germany, during two world wars, and were the legal basis of the infamous People’s Court which tried “war treason” cases; cases of “disloyal” expressive acts in most cases without more.

The guidance of Whiting was: “No person in loyal States can rightfully be captured or detained unless he has engaged, or there is reasonable cause to believe he intends to engage, in acts of hostility to the United States — that is to say, in acts which may tend to impede or embarrass the United States in such military proceedings as the commander-in-chief may see fit to institute.” This is the same argument that the U.S. government made in Hedges v. Obama.

What constituted an act of hostility? Whiting defines that to include a sentiment of hostility to the government “to undermine confidence in its capacity or its integrity, to diminish, demoralize . . . its armies, to break down confidence in those who are entrusted with its military operations in the field.”

An example of how martial law was to be carried out was in an order to a subordinate commander by the Army Department of the Pacific Commander in response to complaints from the Citizens of Solano County, California, of disloyal “utterances” they were hearing from fellow citizens.

The order read: “The department commander desires you to let the people understand generally that the order of the President suspending the writ of habeas corpus and directing the arrest of all persons guilty of disloyal practices will be rigidly enforced. . . . Practices injurious to the government or offensive to the loyal sentiment of the people will under no circumstances be permitted.”

Immediately after the Civil War, when it was freshest in their minds, the Supreme Court had this to say about martial law in Ex Parte Milligan: “What is ordinarily called martial law is no law at all. Wellington, in one of his despatches from Portugal, in 1810, in his speech on the Ceylon affair, so describes it. Let us call the thing by its right name; it is not martial law, but martial rule. And when we speak of it, let us speak of it as abolishing all law, and substituting the will of the military commander, and we shall give a true idea of the thing, and be able to reason about it with a clear sense of what we are doing.”

Martial law is a sub-part of the Law of War and since it is for application to a domestic population as with the Northern States during the Civil War by the Union Army, it is “moderated” ordinarily from the even harsher provisions of the Law of War which are now invoked in the Law of War manual. Yet precepts of both are being introduced domestically with Section 1021 of the 2012 National Defense Authorization Act and domestically and globally by the “U.S. domestic common law of war” precedents trumpeted by Chief Military Commissions Prosecutor, Brig. Gen. Mark Martins.

It must be noted that this is not to compare the Union unfavorably with the Confederacy. The Confederacy had the highest form of martial law: slavery. But the Defense Department only uses one legal precedent from the Confederacy today, which is “outlawry.”

Lieber’s Code addressed “outlawry” in Art. 148, which provided, in pertinent part: “The law of war does not allow proclaiming either an individual belonging to the hostile army, or a citizen, or a subject of the hostile government, an outlaw, who may be slain without trial by any captor, . . . on the contrary, it abhors such outrage.”

This was adopted in the Hague Regulations and as interpreted in earlier Army Law of Land Warfare manuals, prohibited assassinations as well as any declarations that an individual or group is outside the protection of the law of war, which is what designation as an unprivileged belligerent does. The prohibition of assassination has also been put aside with the routine practice of assassination with drones today by the U.S. military.

The Confederacy committed the offense of outlawry when its leaders declared all captured African-Americans fighting for the Union were outside the protection of the law of war (which did preexist Lieber’s Code) and would be placed into the indefinite detention of slavery. After 9/11, the U.S. government did the same with the invention of the unlawful combatant/unprivileged belligerent category and indefinite detention at Guantanamo Bay and any other location U.S. officials chose to place “unprivileged belligerents.”

Treason of the Professors and the Media

Ironically, shortly after the New York Times expressed its concern for journalists in early August, the Guardian reported in an article written by William C. Bradford, a recently hired assistant professor in the law department at the U.S. Military Academy at West Point. The article, entitled “Trahison des Professeurs: The Critical Law of Armed Conflict Academy as an Islamist Fifth Column,” was published in the National Security Law Journal of George Mason University Law School.

Bradford argued that the U.S. should be more aggressive in attacking Muslims to include attacks which are war crimes under the law of war. But it was his advocacy that the U.S. military attack other “lawful targets” in its war on terrorism, which include “law school facilities, scholars’ home offices and media outlets where they give interviews” that caught the most attention. These civilian areas were all places where a “causal connection between the content disseminated and Islamist crimes incited” exist, according to Bradford.

Furthermore, Bradford wrote, “Shocking and extreme as this option might seem, [dissenting] scholars, and the law schools that employ them, are – at least in theory – targetable so long as attacks are proportional, distinguish noncombatants from combatants, employ nonprohibited weapons, and contribute to the defeat of Islamism.” In other words, dissenting scholars are unprivileged belligerents and subject to attack, just as journalists are according to the Law of War manual.

Not to defend him but Bradford was articulating the underlying logic of the new Law of War manual’s position that dissenting journalists can be targeted as unprivileged belligerents. This, as stated above, is consistent with oppressive extra-constitutional martial law practices which Chief Prosecutor Mark Martins boasts of as “U.S. domestic common law of war.”

One has to ask: where are the supposed watchdogs of the press when military officers can so easily slide historical falsehoods past them in destroying freedom of the press? Further, Bradford argued that law professors who criticized the failure of the U.S. to abide by the Geneva Conventions and the Law of War represented a “treasonous” fifth column that could be attacked as enemy combatants.

If there is treason being committed in the United States, it must be seen in the acts of those reconstituting the extra-constitutional martial law cases of the Civil War period. That is, Brig. Gen. Mark Martins and associated government attorneys who, in effect, are engaged in an indirect coup d’etat of the U.S. Constitutional order. In fact, Bradford was alleged to have written in favor of a direct military coup d’etat as well.

As it turned out, Bradford had other ethical issues than just his incitement to commit war crimes and target law professors. A combination of factors led to his resigning his position at the Military Academy and this individual crisis would seem to have passed.

The home page of the National Security Law Journal in which his essay had been published carried a repudiation of it by the incoming editorial board. They summarized his article as follows: “Mr. Bradford’s contention that some scholars in legal academia could be considered as constituting a fifth column in the war against terror; his interpretation is that those scholars could be targeted as unlawful combatants.”

But substitute “journalists” for “scholars” and you have the position on journalists of the DOD’s new Law of War manual.

An insightful article in The Atlantic asks “how a scholar pushing these ideas seems not to have raised red flags any earlier.” That’s an excellent question. The article was entitled “The Unusual Opinions of William C. Bradford.” But here’s the point; these opinions are not unusual among some members of the military and right-wing law professors such as Adrian Vermeule of Harvard and Eric Posner of the University of Chicago.

Posner and Vermeule have carved out a niche in American legal discourse in advocating that the U.S. needs to turn to the legal “wisdom” of the German Nazi lawyer, Carl Schmitt. In Terror in the Balance, they suggest that the U.S. may need to adopt censorship for, among other reasons, “antigovernment speech may demoralize soldiers and civilians.” For precedent, they point out that “Martial law during the Civil War permitted the military to try and punish people who criticized the Lincoln administration’s conduct of the war.”

The Attack on ‘Lawfare’

Other prominent advocates of authoritarian legal practices present themselves as protecting against disloyal attorney who practice “lawfare,” which is defined as a form of “asymmetric warfare” that misuses domestic or international law to damage an opponent through legal actions in a courtroom. For instance, Ben Wittes of lawfareblog.com would seem to espouse this type of animosity toward public-interest lawyers who use the courts to defend First Amendment liberties.

A fallacious argument, made by Wittes in a paper which calls for “balancing” liberty and security, is his idiosyncratic belief that “in American constitutional law, for example, free speech does not exist as a general right of the public to communicate as much or as widely as it desires but as an individual right not to have government restrict one’s speech.”

This is contrary to the understanding of the Supreme Court which held in First Nat. Bank of Boston v. Bellotti, that: “[T]he First Amendment goes beyond protection of the press and the self-expression of individuals to prohibit government from limiting the stock of information from which members of the public may draw.” In other words, the First Amendment guarantees the public’s “right to know.”

Why does this matter? The Constitution’s Framers understood that an informed population was crucial for a Republic. As James Madison put it: “A popular Government, without popular information, or the means of acquiring it, is but a Prologue to a Farce or a Tragedy; or, perhaps both. Knowledge will forever govern ignorance: And a people who mean to be their own Governors, must arm themselves with the power which knowledge gives.”

This understanding of the criticality of the free flow of information for wise democratic decision-making is particularly important for national security where ignorance comes with the highest cost. This understanding formed Clausewitz’s belief in a broad-based civilian decision-making process in matters of national security strategic policy, and not one driven by military leaders with their one-dimensional thinking process.

The Vietnam War is Exhibit A as proof of this. If it had been left to the Generals to decide, the war would have continued “perpetually” even though wiser heads realized from the beginning that it was unwinnable by U.S. terms of maintaining an unpopular government in South Vietnam. The antiwar movement, whatever the motives of some, proved to be more strategically astute than General William Westmoreland who would have continued the war until the U.S. bankrupted itself in the manner that the Soviet Union would years later in Afghanistan. It was the American antiwar movement which gave effect to Clausewitz’s strategy that when a war’s costs exceed its “benefits,” a way must be found to end it.

Curiously, Wittes accurately notes in Law and the Long War that to claim “the President has all the powers of a normal war yet few of its restraints, that the whole world is his battlefield, and that this state of affairs goes on in perpetuity is really akin to claiming a kind of worldwide martial law.” In fact, that’s exactly what the Justice Department argued in Hedges v. Obama without the admission as to martial law.

Dissent as Treason

Since the Vietnam War, the belief that the media and other critics of government policies act as fifth columnists has become commonplace in military-oriented journals and with the American authoritarian-oriented political class, expressed in articles such as William Bradford’s attack on “treasonous professors.”

To the question “how a scholar pushing these ideas” did not raise a red flag, that might best be asked of the National Security Law Journal’s previous editorial board. It is worth noting however that the editors who chose to publish Bradford’s article are not neophytes in national security issues or strangers to the military or government.

As described on the NSLJ website, the Editor-in-Chief from 2014-2015 has broad experience in homeland and national security programs from work at both the Department of Justice and the Department of Homeland Security and currently serves (at the time of publication of Bradford’s article) as the Deputy Director for the Office of Preparedness Integration and Coordination at FEMA. A U.S. government official in other words.

The “Articles Selection Editor” is described as “a family physician with thirty years of experience in the foreign affairs and intelligence communities.” Websites online suggest his experience may have been acquired as a CIA employee. The executive editor appears to be a serving Marine Corps officer who attended law school as a military-funded student.

Significantly; Bradford was articulating precepts of the “U.S. common law of war” promoted by Chief Prosecutor Mark Martins because nothing Bradford advocated was inconsistent with William Whiting’s guidance to Union Generals. Except Whiting went even further and advised that judges in the Union states who “impeded” the military in any way by challenging their detentions were even greater “public enemies” than Confederate soldiers were.

This “U.S. common law of war” is a prosecution fabrication created by legal expediency in the absence of legitimate legal precedent for what the United States was doing with prisoners captured globally after 9/11. This legal invention came about when military commission prosecutors failed to prove that the offense of Material Support for Terrorism was an international law of war crime. So prosecutors dreamed up a “domestic common law of war.” This in fact is simply following the pattern of totalitarian states of the Twentieth Century.

Government-Media-Academic-Complex

The logic of Bradford’s argument is the same as that of the Defense Department in declaring that journalists may be deemed “unprivileged belligerents.” As quoted above, George H. Aldrich had observed that in Vietnam, both sides had as their goal “the destruction of the will to continue the struggle.”

Bradford argued that Islamists must overcome Americans’ support for the current war to prevail, and “it is the ‘informational dimension’ which is their main combat effort because it is U.S. political will which must be destroyed for them to win.” But he says Islamists lack skill “to navigate the information battlespace, employ PSYOPs, and beguile Americans into hostile judgments regarding the legitimacy of their cause.”

Therefore, according to Bradford, Islamists have identified “force multipliers with cultural knowledge of, social proximity to, and institutional capacity to attrit American political will. These critical nodes form an interconnected ‘government-media-academic complex’ (‘GMAC’) of public officials, media, and academics who mould mass opinion on legal and security issues . . . .”

Consequently, Bradford argues, within this triumvirate, “it is the wielders of combat power within these nodes — journalists, officials, and law professors — who possess the ideological power to defend or destroy American political will.”

While Bradford reserves special vituperation for his one-time fellow law professors, he states the “most transparent example of this power to shape popular opinion as to the legitimacy of U.S. participation in wars is the media.”

As proof, Bradford explained how this “disloyalty” of the media worked during the Vietnam War. He wrote: “During the Vietnam War, despite an unbroken series of U.S. battlefield victories, the media first surrendered itself over to a foreign enemy for use as a psychological weapon against Americans, not only expressing criticism of U.S. purpose and conduct but adopting an ‘antagonistic attitude toward everything America was and represented’ and ‘spinning’ U.S. military success to convince Americans that they were losing, and should quit, the war. Journalistic alchemists converted victory into defeat simply by pronouncing it.”

Space does not permit showing in how many ways this “stab in the back” myth is false. But this belief in the disloyalty of the media in Bradford’s view remains today. He wrote: “Defeatism, instinctive antipathy to war, and empathy for American adversaries persist within media.”

Targeting Journalists

The right-wing militarist Jewish Institute for National Security Affairs (JINSA), with mostly retired U.S. military officers serving as advisers, has advocated targeting journalists with military attacks. Writing in The Journal of International Security Affairs in 2009, retired U.S. Army Lt. Col. Ralph Peters wrote:

“Today, the United States and its allies will never face a lone enemy on the battlefield. There will always be a hostile third party in the fight, but one which we not only refrain from attacking but are hesitant to annoy: the media . . . . Future wars may require censorship, news blackouts and, ultimately, military attacks on the partisan media.” (Emphasis in original.)

The rationale for that deranged thinking was first propounded by Admiral Ulysses S. Grant Sharp and other authoritarian-minded officers after the Vietnam War. Sharp explained, our “will” was eroded because “we were subjected to a skillfully waged subversive propaganda campaign, aided and abetted by the media’s bombardment of sensationalism, rumors and half-truths about the Vietnam affair — a campaign that destroyed our national unity.” William C. Bradford apparently adopted and internalized this belief, as have many other military officers.

That “stab in the back” myth was propagated by a number of U.S. military officers as well as President Richard Nixon (as explained here). It was more comfortable to believe that than that the military architects of the war did not understand what they were doing. So they shifted blame onto members of the media who were astute enough to recognize and report on the military’s failure and war crimes, such as My Lai.

But those “critical” journalists, along with critics at home, were only recognizing what smarter Generals such as General Frederick Weyand recognized from the beginning. That is, the war was unwinnable by the U.S. because it was maintaining in power its despotic corrupt ally, the South Vietnamese government, against its own people. Whether or not what came later was worse for the Vietnamese people was unforeseeable by the majority of the people. What was in front of their eyes was the military oppression of American and South Vietnamese forces and secret police.

Information Warfare Today

In 1999, the Rand Corporation published a collection of articles in Strategic Appraisal: The Changing Role of Information in Warfare. The volume was edited by Zalmay Khalilzad, the alleged author of the Defense Department’s 1992 Defense Planning Guidance, which was drafted when Dick Cheney was Defense Secretary and Paul Wolfowitz was Under Secretary of Defense – and promulgated a theory of permanent U.S. global dominance.

One chapter of Rand’s Strategic Appraisal was written by Jeremy Shapiro, now a special adviser at the U.S. State Department, according to Wikipedia. Shapiro wrote that the inability to control information flows was widely cited as playing an essential role in the downfall of the communist regimes of Eastern Europe and the Soviet Union.

He stated that perception management was “the vogue term for psychological operations or propaganda directed at the public.” As he expressed it, many observers worried that potential foes could use techniques of perception management with asymmetric strategies with their effect on public opinion to “destroy the will of the United States to wage war.”

Consequently, “Warfare in this new political environment consists largely of the battle to shape the political context of the war and the meaning of victory.”

Another chapter on Ethics and Information Warfare by John Arquilla makes clear that information warfare must be understood as “a true form of war.” The range of information warfare operations, according to Arquilla, extends “from the battlefield to the enemy home front.” Information warfare is designed “to strike directly at the will and logistical support of an opponent.”

This notion of information warfare, that it can be pursued without a need to defeat an adversary’s armed forces, is an area of particular interest, according to Arquilla. What he means is that it necessitates counter measures when it is seen as directed at the U.S. as now provided for in the new LOW Manual.

Important to note, according to Arquilla, is that there is an inherent blurriness with defining “combatants” and “acts of war.” Equating information warfare to guerrilla warfare in which civilians often engage in the fighting, Arquilla states “in information warfare, almost anyone can engage in the fighting.”

Consequently, the ability to engage in this form of conflict is now in the hands of small groups and individuals, offering up “the prospect of potentially quite large numbers of information warfare-capable combatants emerging, often pursuing their own, as opposed to some state’s policies,” Arquilla wrote.

Therefore, a “concern” for information warfare at the time of the Rand study in 1999 was the problem of maintaining “noncombatant immunity.” That’s because the “civilian-oriented target set is huge and likely to be more vulnerable than the related set of military infrastructures . . . . Since a significant aspect of information warfare is aimed at civilian and civilian-oriented targets, despite its negligible lethality, it nonetheless violates the principle of noncombatant immunity, given that civilian economic or other assets are deliberately targeted.”

What Arquillo is saying is that civilians who are alleged to engage in information warfare, such as professors and journalists, lose their “noncombatant immunity” and can be attacked. The “blurriness” of defining “combatants” and “acts of war” was removed after 9/11 with the invention of the “unlawful combatant” designation, later renamed “unprivileged belligerent” to mimic language in the Geneva Conventions.

Then it was just a matter of adding the similarly invented “U.S. domestic common law of war” with its martial law precedents and a framework has been built for seeing critical journalists and law professors as “unprivileged belligerents,” as Bradford indiscreetly wrote.

Arquilla claims that information warfare operations extend to the “home front” and are designed “to strike directly at the will and logistical support of an opponent.” That is to equate what is deemed information warfare to sabotage of the population’s psychological will to fight a war, and dissidents to saboteurs.

Perpetual War

But this is a perpetual war driven by U.S. operations, according to a chapter written by Stephen T. Hosmer on psychological effects of information warfare. Here, it is stated that “the expanding options for reaching audiences in countries and groups that could become future U.S. adversaries make it important that the United States begin its psychological conditioning in peacetime.” Thus, it is necessary “to begin to soften the fighting will of the potential adversary’s armed forces in the event conflict does occur.”

As information warfare is held to be “true war,” this means that the U.S. is perpetually committing acts of war against those deemed “potential” adversaries. Little wonder that Vladimir Putin sees Russia as under assault by the United States and attempts to counter U.S. information warfare.

This same logic is applied to counter-insurgency. The 2014 COIN Manual, FM 3-24, defines “Information Operations” as information-related capabilities “to influence, disrupt, corrupt, or usurp the decision-making of adversaries and potential adversaries while protecting our own.”

Those we “protect ourselves from” can logically be seen as the internal enemy, as William Bradford saw it, such as critical law professors and journalists, just as Augusto Pinochet did in Chile with dissidents.

With the totalitarian logic of information-warfare theorists, internalized now throughout much of the U.S. government counter-terrorism community, it should be apparent to all but the most obtuse why the DOD deems a journalist who writes critically of U.S. government war policy an “unprivileged belligerent,” an enemy, as in the Law of War manual. William C. Bradford obviously absorbed this doctrine but was indiscreet enough to articulate it fully.

It Has Happened Here!

That’s the only conclusion one can draw from reading the transcript of the Hedges v. Obama lawsuit. In that lawsuit, plaintiffs, including journalists and political activists, challenged the authority provided under Sec. 1021 of the 2012 National Defense Authorization for removal out from under the protection of the Constitution of those deemed unprivileged belligerents. That is, civilians suspected of lending any “support” to anyone whom the U.S. government might deem as having something to do with terrorism.

“Support” can be as William Whiting described it in 1862 and as what is seen as “information warfare” by the U.S. military today: a sentiment of hostility to the government “to undermine confidence in its capacity or its integrity, to diminish, demoralize . . . its armies, to break down confidence in those who are intrusted with its military operations in the field.”

Reminiscent of the Sinclair Lewis novel It Can’t Happen Here where those accused of crimes against the government are tried by military judges as in the U.S. Military Commissions, a Justice Department attorney arguing on behalf of the United States epitomized the legal reasoning that one would see in a totalitarian state in arguing why the draconian “Law of War” is a substitute for the Constitution.

The Court asked Assistant U.S. Attorney Benjamin Torrance if he would agree, “as a principled matter, that the President can’t, in the name of the national security of the United States, just decide to detain whomever he believes it is important to detain or necessary to detain to prevent a terrorist act within the United States?”

Rather than giving a straight affirmative answer to a fundamental principle of the U.S. Constitution, Torrance dissembled, only agreeing that that description would seem “quite broad,” especially if citizens. But he added disingenuously that it was the practice of the government “not to keep people apprehended in the U.S.”

Which is true, it is known that people detained by the U.S. military and CIA have been placed everywhere but in the U.S. so that Constitutional rights could not attach. Under Section 1021, that “inconvenience” to the government would not be necessary.

When asked by the Court if he, the Justice Department attorney, would agree that a different administration could change its mind with respect to whether or not Sec. 1021 would be applied in any way to American citizens, he dissembled again, answering: “Is that possible? Yes, but it is speculative and conjecture and that cannot be the basis for an injury in fact.”

So U.S. citizens or anyone else are left to understand that they have no rights remaining under the Constitution. If a supposed “right” is contingent upon who is President, it is not a right and the U.S. is no longer under the rule of law.

In discussing whether activist and journalist Birgitta Jónsdóttir, a citizen of Iceland, could be subject to U.S. military detention or trial by military commission, Assistant U.S. Attorney Torrance would only disingenuously answer that “her activities as she alleges them, do not implicate this.” Disingenuous because he knew based upon the answer he previously gave that the law of war is arbitrary and its interpretation contingent upon a military commander, whoever that may be, at present or in the future.

What could happen to Ms. Jónsdóttir would be completely out of her control should the U.S. government decide to deem her an “unprivileged belligerent,” regardless of whether her expressive activities changed positively or negatively, or remained the same. Her risk of detention per the Justice Department is entirely at the sufferance of whatever administration may be in place at any given moment.

Any doubt that the Authorization for the Use of Military Force, along with Section 1021 of the National Defense Authorization Act of 2012, is believed by the U.S. Executive Branch to give it the untrammeled power that Article 48 of the Weimar Germany constitution gave to the German President in 1933 was settled by the arguments made by the Justice Department attorney in Hedges v. Obama.

Setting First Amendment Aside

One does not need to speculate that the U.S. government no longer sees First Amendment activities as protected. Government arguments, which were made in the Hedges v. Obama lawsuit, revealed that the Justice Department, speaking for the Executive Branch, considers protection of the Bill of Rights subordinate to the claim of “war powers” by the Executive. One can only be willfully blind to fail to see this.

By the Justice Department’s court arguments and filings, the protections afforded by the U.S. Bill of Rights are no more secure today than they were to Japanese-Americans when Western District military commander General DeWitt decided to remove them from their homes on the West Coast and intern them in what were initially called, “concentration camps.”

The American Bar Association Journal reported in 2014 that Justice Antonin Scalia told students in Hawaii that “the Supreme Court’s Korematsu decision upholding the internment of Japanese Americans was wrong, but it could happen again in war time.” But contrary to Scalia stating that Korematsu had been repudiated, Korematsu has never been overruled.

The court could get a chance to do so, the ABA article stated, in the Hedges v. Obama case “involving the military detention without trial of people accused of aiding terrorism.” But that opportunity has passed.

A U.S. District Court issued a permanent injunction blocking the law’s indefinite detention powers but that ruling was overturned by the Second Circuit Court of Appeals. A petition to the U.S. Supreme Court asked the justices to overturn Sec. 1021, the federal law authorizing such detentions and stated the justices should consider overruling Korematsu. But the Supreme Court declined to hear the case in 2014, leaving the Appeals Court’s ruling intact.

The Supreme Court’s decision to not overturn Korematsu allows General DeWitt’s World War II decision to intern Japanese-Americans in concentration camps to stand as a shining example of what Brig. General Marks Martins proudly holds up to the world as the “U.S. domestic common law of war.”

Todd E. Pierce retired as a Major in the U.S. Army Judge Advocate General (JAG) Corps in November 2012. His most recent assignment was defense counsel in the Office of Chief Defense Counsel, Office of Military Commissions. In the course of that assignment, he researched and reviewed the complete records of military commissions held during the Civil War and stored at the National Archives in Washington, D.C.

September 13, 2015 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Full Spectrum Dominance, Mainstream Media, Warmongering, War Crimes | , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Israel’s JINSA Earns Return on Investment: 190 Americans Admirals and Generals Oppose Iran Deal

By John Stanton | CounterPunch | August 28, 2015

According to Carol Greenwald writing at American Thinker on 27 August 2015, Washington Post writer “[Carol] Morello does not mention how incredible it was that a few people, mostly a woman named Marsha Halteman from New Orleans, in one week could get 190 flag officers to sign a public letter stating that “the JCPOA [Iran Deal] would threaten the national security and vital interests of the United States and, therefore, should be disapproved by the Congress.”

Well not so incredible at all thanks to the Jewish Institute of National Security Affairs (JINSA) very successful Generals and Admiral Program that has been in operation for many years. It has been the pipeline for 400 American military officers to visit Israel. Israel also runs similar programs for US military academy students and US law enforcement personnel.

The purpose of bringing American military personnel—and military academy students—is to maintain “Continued and robust military-to-military dialogue between the American and Israeli defense establishments is central to JINSA’s philosophy. The annual Generals and Admirals Program to Israel, in which recently retired American generals and admirals are invited to visit Israel with JINSA to meet the top echelon of the Israeli military and political leadership, ensures that the American delegation is well briefed on the security concerns of Israel, as well as the key role Israel plays as a friend and ally of the U.S. To date, JINSA has taken close to 400 retired officers to Israel, many of whom serve on JINSA’s Board of Advisors.”

As of this writing the Washington Post does not appear to have updated its story on the incredible effort of Marsha Halteman who is the recipient of a prestigious award from a US combatant command.

“It gives us great pleasure to announce that JINSA’s Marsha Halteman will be honored by the United States Special Operations Command (USSOCOM) with their Outstanding Civilian Service Medal for her tireless work on JINSA’s Soldiers Appeal, which raises funds for military members and their families who are in need of financial assistance. Her selfless and hard work is instrumental in actively supporting a USSOCOM priority – enhancing the quality of life of the individual warrior and family. Established by the Commander of USSOCOM in September 1998, the Outstanding Civilian Service Medal recognizes civilians who have provided outstanding support or service. For Marsha, this work has been both an act of love and admiration for our men and women in uniform, as well as above and beyond the call of duty. She has truly made a difference in the lives of so many soldiers and their families and she is most deserving of this award. This prestigious award will be presented to Marsha by a senior member of the USSOCOM Command at JINSA’s Spring 2014 Leadership Conference. Details of this meeting and a formal “Save the Date” will be released soon. We hope that many of you will be able to join us for the meeting and to honor Marsha.”

If the US national security and political establishment had the dedication, tenacity and thoroughness of the Israeli’s—in their pursuit of their national security interests, the USA would be a far more powerful country abroad and maybe at home. Israel’s interests are represented in every nook and cranny in the United States at the local, state and federal levels. They believe in Israel, nothing else. That deserves respect. American leaders, comparatively, are pathetic.

August 28, 2015 Posted by | Militarism, Wars for Israel | , , , , , , | Leave a comment