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Gerry Docherty on the Hidden History of WWI

Corbett Report Extras | December 11, 2018

Gerry Docherty, co-author with Jim MacGregor of Hidden History: The Secret Origins of the First World War, joins us for an in-depth discussion about the real origins of WWI. In this wide-ranging discussion, Docherty reveals the machinations of the Secret Elite that ensnared Europe, and, ultimately, the world, in war. We also talk about the teaching of history and who controls the historical narrative on key global events.

Watch this video on BitChute / DTube / YouTube or Download the mp4

SHOW NOTES:
Hidden History blog and website

Hidden History: The Secret Origins of the First World War

Prolonging the Agony: How the Anglo-American Establishment Deliberately Extended WWI

December 13, 2018 Posted by | Book Review, Deception, Militarism, Timeless or most popular, Video, War Crimes | , | Leave a comment

US, EU Hindering Global Ban on Malicious Software – Russian Cyberthreat Centre

Sputnik – December 11, 2018

The deputy head of Russia’s National Cyberthreat Response Centre has said that an international ban on malicious software would be a major step in boosting security for ordinary users, but suggested that the US and Europe were dragging their feet on the issue.

Nikolai Murashov, deputy director of Russia’s National Cyberthreat Response Centre, has charged the United States, the United Kingdom, and the European Union with hampering efforts to introduce an international ban on the creation of malicious software. At the same time, he said, statistics on the geographical distribution of cyberattacks between 2016 and 2017 show that locations in the US and the EU are global cyberattack source hotspots.

Speaking at a cybersecurity briefing in Moscow on Tuesday, Murashov pointed out that the Russian criminal code already has an article categorising the creation of computer viruses as a crime.

“But not many states have followed suit. Almost everywhere [else], there is no ban on the development of similar software. Moreover, officials in the US, UK, and the EU do everything to hamper the approval of any recommendations on the criminalisation of such activities at forums where global information security is discussed”, the official said, clarifying that such resistance has included foot dragging at the UN.

According to the cybersecurity official, Washington has in fact “unilaterally blocked” the functioning of mechanisms on cooperation with Russia to ensure security in the fields of information and communication technologies, despite a 2013 agreement on the joint tackling of threats in this sphere. Nevertheless, Russia remains ready to “resume constructive dialogue” in this area, pending that it is based on “open and equal cooperation”.

Russia Ready to Publish Correspondence on Alleged Russian ‘Meddling’ in US Elections

The Russian side is ready to publish correspondence on the subject of alleged Russian meddling in the 2016 US elections via the hack of the Democratic Party servers, pending agreement from the American side, Murashov said.

“The first message was received only on 31 October 2016, as far as I can recall. After that there were a number of additional messages containing certain technical information about the hacking [of the DNC servers] that had taken place. We analysed all of this information, and even before [Donald] Trump’s inauguration as president, sent the American side what we judged to be an exhaustive response”.

The Russian side cannot share this information with the public without approval from the US side, in accordance with intergovernmental agreements, the official noted. “Accordingly, we are prepared to publish all available correspondence if the American side gives its agreement”, Murashov added.

Foreign Intelligence Behind Cyberattacks on Russian Internet on Election Day

Foreign intelligence agencies stood behind the cyberattacks which affected Russian cyber-infrastructure on the day of the “Direct Line With Vladimir Putin” programme in 2017, as well as voting day in presidential elections in March, Murashov said.

“Since June 2017, we recorded an attack against the entire [Russian] national segment of the internet. The first peak of this attack came on the day of the ‘Direct Line’ programme with the Russian president”, i.e. 15 June 2017, the official said. The attack used a new modification of the “Russkill” group of viruses, he noted.

“After evaluating the capabilities embedded in this modification, we came to the conclusion that we are dealing with a special service of a foreign state, which has perfect knowledge of the algorithms of root DNS servers”, Murashov said. “We realised that in the near future, we should be prepared for more powerful attacks. And this is what ended up happening. The peak of a new wave of the attack fell on the day of the presidential elections in Russia in March of this year”, he added.

Software Manufacturers Share Blame for Software Vulnerabilities

Murashov noted that one of the major problems in the field of cybersecurity today lies in the fact that software makers are rarely held accountable for the security of their products, with software vulnerabilities resulting from products being rushed to markets prematurely leaving the door open for the creation of new viruses designed for mass hacking attacks. The official stressed that an explicit global ban on the creation of malicious software could go a long way in ensuring user security.

Having studied research compiled by Symantec and Webroot in the US, Japan’s NTT Security, and China’s CNCERT/CC cybersecurity centres between 2016 and 2017, Murashov pointed out that the US, France, and the Netherlands ranked first, second and third, respectively, in the geographic distribution of cyberattacks. “This data makes it clear that according to these companies the United States and the European Union are the main sources of malicious activity”, he said.

According to Russian National Cyberthreat Response Centre figures, large scale cyberattacks involving the viruses WannaCry, NotPetya, and BadRabbit affected users in nearly 100 countries in 2017, infecting over 500,000 computers, more than 60 percent of them in Russia. These viruses, using advanced encryption methods, affected not only ordinary users, but components of Russia’s information infrastructure as well, Murashov said.

December 11, 2018 Posted by | Timeless or most popular | , , , , | Leave a comment

Labour furious over report that anti-Russia charity targeted Corbyn, receives govt cash

RT | December 9, 2018

Labour politicians are outraged and calling for a probe after a report that a McCarthy style charity has received £2 million in government money and targeted Jeremy Corbyn, straying from tackling so-called Russian disinformation.

The Institute for Statecraft, based in Scotland, initially seems to be a small organization which claims to counter alleged Russian propaganda by forming communities of journalists and influencers who use social media to push back on any so-called disinformation.

However, leaked documents provided to the Daily Record show that the organization’s Integrity Initiative isn’t as grassroots as it appears on the surface. In fact, it’s apparently funded with £2 million of Foreign Office cash and run by British military intelligence specialists.

What’s more is that the newspaper has reported that it launched its own investigation which found “worrying evidence” that the organization’s official Twitter account has been used to attack Jeremy Corbyn, his Labour Party, and other officials within the party.

And of course, there were some anti-Russia comments thrown in for good measure – such as one tweet which quoted a newspaper article calling Corbyn a “useful idiot” with “open visceral anti-Westernism [that] helped the Kremlin cause, as surely as if he had been secretly peddling Westminster tittle-tattle for money.”

“What he has done, wittingly or unwittingly, is work with the Kremlin agenda,” a newspaper report retweeted by the Integrity Initiative tweet states.

Although the Integrity Initiative’s apparent mission was first revealed last month, the Daily Record’s Sunday report about its targeting of Corbyn and the Labour party has left the party’s members more than a little angry.

“It is simply outrageous that the clearly mis-named ‘Integrity Initiative’ – funded by the Foreign Office to the tune of £2.25 million over the past two years – has routinely been using its Twitter feed to disseminate personal attacks and smears against the Leader of the Opposition, the Labour Party and Labour officials,” Emily Thornberry MP, Labour’s Shadow Foreign Secretary said in her statement.

Labour MP Chris Williamson also chimed in, calling any such activity “unacceptable in any democracy.”

The question of whether MSM will eventually pick up the story remains unknown, especially since it has a tendency to turn a blind eye to anyone claiming to fight the good fight against “aggressive” Russia.

The Integrity Initiative’s spokesman Stephen Dalziel has said he is “not aware” of any Corbyn attacks on the official social media account. “I’m not the one who controls the Twitter account. If it was criticism of one of our politicians, then that shouldn’t be on there.”

December 9, 2018 Posted by | Deception, Russophobia | , | Leave a comment

Mainstream Media Assaults on Freedom of Speech. “The Truth” is No Longer “Important”

Alternative news sources have come under sustained attacks

By Shane Quinn – Global Research – December 7, 2018

The New York Times unveiled a new slogan early in 2017 titled, “The truth is more important now than ever.” It has acquired a seemingly noble motto but a perhaps contentious one if we examine the Times’ recent history. Two international law specialists, Howard Friel and Richard Falk, published a book after the 2003 Invasion of Iraq called The Record of the Paper, which has scarcely been reviewed.

Friel and Falk focused on the Times due to the newspaper’s importance. The authors point out that in 70 Times editorials on Iraq – from September 11, 2001 to March 20, 2003 – the words “international law” and “UN Charter” were never mentioned. The “truth” did not seem terribly “important” as the Times stood idly by in the destruction of Iraq.

Such was the barrage of propaganda directed at the American public that 69% believed Saddam Hussein was “personally involved” in the September 11 attacks. That is a significant achievement in manipulation. The poll results must have been news to the Iraqi dictator himself, a forgotten one-time American ally.

Why Hussein would take it upon himself to orchestrate a surprise attack on the United States, of all nations, is anyone’s guess. Perhaps if he had a death wish but as later events proved he was not the suicidal type.

The Times was not alone in its position of selling the Iraq war to the American people, as television networks from Fox News to CBS and CNN were overwhelmingly pro-war. Fox News, owned by Rupert Murdoch – who strongly backed the illegal conflict – placed a permanent US flag in the corner of the screen. Fox employees were compelled to describe the invasion as “Operation Iraqi Freedom”, with hundreds of thousands of Iraqis later being killed.

The pattern continues into other illegitimate interventions as the liberal Guardian newspaper championed the demolition of Libya in 2011, with editorials imploring, “The quicker Muammar Gaddafi falls, the better.” The Guardian encouraged NATO “to tip the military balance further against Gaddafi”, while later that year summarising that “it has turned out, so far, reasonably well” – by that point thousands had been killed.

In 2015 Ian Birrell, then deputy editor of the Independent, still assured his readers, “I would argue that Britain and France were right to step in [in Libya]. The failures came later on.” Apparently it was fine for two old imperial powers to “step in” to shatter a sovereign nation, then afterwards absolve the invaders of blame with “the failures” only coming “later on”.

Sceengrab from The Independent

It’s a rare thing indeed to hear a prominent commentator question the balance of Western mainstream coverage. The same voices can be heard piping up when alternative news sources take a different line not so palatable to their tastes.

Nick Cohen, writing in the Guardian, accused the network Russia Today (RT) of being a “propaganda channel” and that Russia was “prostituting journalism”. In the following sentence, Cohen describes the BBC and New York Times as being “reputable news organisations”.

Cohen firmly supported the Iraq war, writing at the time that “the Left betrays the Iraqi people by opposing war”, and “an American invasion offers the possibility of salvation”. He was deemed not to be “prostituting journalism” in backing this violation of international law, nor when later supporting other interventions in Libya and Syria.

The BBC’s reputation, which Cohen previously claimed to be “reputable”, was dealt a blow when it was revealed by Cardiff University that the network “displayed the most ‘pro-war’ agenda of any broadcaster” with its coverage on the Iraq invasion.

Steven Erlanger of the New York Times described RT as “an agent of Kremlin policy” used to “undermine Western democracies” and to “destabilise the West” – failing to back up the claims with any evidence. To gain perspective on these attacks, it may be worth pointing out a key excerpt from the First Amendment of the US Constitution: “Congress shall make no law… abridging [curtailing] the freedom of speech, or of the press.”

This law does not exist in Western democracies but attempts at limiting freedom of expression continue apace, while attacks on alternative media outlets by institutions of power grow. It has reached a point whereby the French president Emmanuel Macron, shortly after assuming office, publicly attacked legitimate news sources of “behaving like deceitful propaganda”.

Perhaps the hidden concern about RT, for example, is its continued increase in both popularity and scope – with the channel enjoying a total weekly viewership of 70 million people and rising. RT is available to viewers in Western heartlands such as Britain and the US, with eight million Americans watching the station each week. It represents quite an achievement that a channel with the word “Russia”, featured in its title, can attract viewers in their millions, despite the growing anti-Russian sentiment espoused by the powers-that-be.

It is revealing that elite figures like Hillary Clinton have lamented in the past, “We are in an information war and we are losing that war.” For the first time in history, populations have broad access to alternative news angles – points of view that they likely find of a more balanced nature. Gone is the unchallenged monopoly on the public mind.

December 7, 2018 Posted by | Book Review, Fake News, Mainstream Media, Warmongering | , , , | 1 Comment

Mattis Tells All Without Any Evidence

By Philip M. GIRALDI | Strategic Culture Foundation | 06.12.2018

The insanity runs deep in Washington but it has also briefly surfaced at Simi Valley in California at the Reagan National Defense Forum, which ran through last weekend. United States Secretary of Defense James “Mad Dog” Mattis was the keynote speaker on Saturday. He had a few interesting things to say, the most remarkable of which was the assertion that Russia had again sought to interfere in the 2018 midterm elections, which were completed last month.

Mattis, a Marine general who is sometimes considered to be the only adult in the room when the White House national security team meets, claimed that the bilateral relationship between Washington and Moscow had “no doubt” deteriorated still further due to the Russian activity, which he described as the Kremlin “try[ing] again to muck around around in our elections last month, and we are seeing a continued effort along those lines” with Russian President Vladimir Putin making “continued efforts to try to subvert democratic processes that must be defended. We’ll do whatever is necessary to defend them.”

Mattis did not address President Donald Trump’s cancellation of a meeting with Putin at the G20 summit in Buenos Aires, Argentina, a move which he reportedly supported. The cancellation was reportedly based on what has been described as an act of aggression committed by the Russian military against three Ukrainian naval vessels seeking to transit the Kerch Strait, which since the annexation of Crimea has been completely controlled by Moscow. The Ukrainians were aware of the Russian protocols for transiting through the area and chose to ignore them to create an incident, possibly as part of a plan to disrupt the Trump-Putin discussions. If that is so, they were successful.

Mattis was somewhat taciturn relating to his accusation regarding Moscow’s meddling. He provided absolutely no evidence that Russia had been interfering in the latest election and there have been no suggestions from either federal or state authorities that there were any irregularities involving foreigners. There was, however, considerable concern over possible ballot and voting manipulation at state levels carried out by the major political parties themselves, suggesting that if Mattis is looking for subversion of democratic processes he might start looking a lot closer to home.

The U.S. government has issued a general warning that “Americans should be aware that foreign actors — and Russia in particular — continue to try to influence public sentiment and voter perceptions through actions intended to sow discord.” Law enforcement and intelligence agencies have reportedly been working with private sector internet social networking companies, to include Twitter and Facebook, to shut down Russian and Iranian accounts in attempt to forestall any interference in either the campaigning or voting processes. Some Russians have even been indicted in absentia based on flimsy evidence but as they are in Russia they cannot be tried. One Russian student, Maria Butina, is still in jail in Virginia based on conflicting and flimsy evidence and it is not clear when she will be able to defend herself in court.

Beyond the general anti-Russia hysteria being encouraged by the media and congress, there are a number of problems with the Mattis assertion. First of all, beyond the fact that no actual evidence has been presented, it is irrational to assume that Russian intelligence services would waste their effort and burn their resources to attempt to accomplish absolutely nothing. Russia was not on the ballot last month and no candidates were running on any platform that would benefit Moscow in the slightest. To get caught “mucking around” would invite more sanctions and justify an increasingly hostile response from Washington, hardly a price that Putin would be willing to pay for little or nothing tangible.

Second, the intense investigations being carried out by the Robert Mueller Special Counsel’s office have to this point developed no information suggesting that Russia did anything in 2016 beyond the low-level probing and manipulating that every major intelligence agency does routinely to get a window into what an adversary is up to. To be sure, several Team Trump associates will likely be going to jail, but their crimes so far have consisted of perjury or tax fraud. Some, like former Trump lawyer Michael Cohen are seeking desperately to find a way to implicate the president in some grander scheme, but if there is anything actually there it has yet to be identified to the public.

Third, based on the evidence produced so far, the only two countries that may have cooperated with either Trump or the Deep State to influence the results of the 2016 election are Israel, which sought Trump intercession at the United Nations, and Britain, which may have engaged in a plot by the British intelligence and security services to conspire with CIA Director John Brennan to elect Hillary Clinton.

So, there we go again. Another vague accusation against Russia to convince the American public that there is a powerful enemy out to get us. And lest there be any shortage of enemies Mattis also mentioned always dangerous Iran, saying “… we cannot deny the threat that Iran poses to all civilized nations.” And, by the way, Mattis in his speech strongly supported an increased “defense” budget to deal with all the threats, saying somewhat obscurely that “Fiscal solvency and strategic solvency can co-exist.” Sure. In the wonderful world of Washington, more money can fix anything.

December 6, 2018 Posted by | Mainstream Media, Warmongering, Russophobia | , , | 1 Comment

Is China Really More “Dystopian” Than The UK?

By Andrew KORYBKO – Oriental Review – 05/12/2018

RT reported that the UK’s so-called “National Data Analytics Solution” will see an algorithm process whichever of 30 separate data points have been recorded about a person in local and national police databases in order to predict which members of the population are most likely to commit a crime or be victimized by one, after which the state will dispatch local health and social workers to offer “counseling” to them in an attempt to prevent the computer’s envisioned scenario from transpiring. This program is being likened to the 2002 film “Minority Report” and carries with it a vibe of China’s controversial “social credit” system, albeit without any “rewards” being offered for law-abiding behavior. In fact, one can actually make the claim that instead of the UK copying China to a degree, it was actually China that learned from the UK seeing as how the island nation’s mass surveillance system used to be far ahead of the communist nation’s one.

The problem with “pre-crime” technology, however, is that it straddles the fine line between security and liberty in what is supposed to be a “democracy”, therefore making it uncomfortably out of place in the UK while being much more natural to implement in centrally controlled societies like China’s. While the European country insincerely pretends to be a “democracy” in the Western sense of how this system is commonly assumed to function, the East Asian one makes no such pretenses and is proud of having a different organizational model, which should be doubly disturbing for any British citizen because it means that their “democratically elected government” is actually less forthcoming about its nationwide surveillance strategy than comparatively more centralized China’s is. No value judgement is being made about either country’s governing system, but the purpose of this comparison is to point out the surprising similarities between the two that are usually lost on most observers.

For as much as China is demonized for taking proactive security measures against Uighurs who the state fears are at risk of succumbing to terrorist ideologies, the UK will essentially be channeling the same spirit of this strategy through its “National Data Analytics Solution” with what can only be assumed are the ethno-socio minority groups in the country that are statistically more at risk of committing crimes or being victimized by them. The difference, however, is that drawing attention to this doesn’t serve the US’ geopolitical interests because it has nothing to gain by destabilizing the UK and possibly imposing sanctions against it for supposedly violating these subjects’ “human rights”, unlike its stance towards China in this respect. While many are fretting that “East Asia” is pioneering the way for Orwell’s 1984 to come to life, they’d do well to consider just how much “Oceania” has already done to make this a reality too.

The post presented is the partial transcript of the CONTEXT COUNTDOWN radio program on Sputnik News, aired on Friday Nov 30, 2018.

December 5, 2018 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Full Spectrum Dominance, Islamophobia, Timeless or most popular | , | Leave a comment

What Foreign Threats?

The biggest threats to America come from its “friends”

By Philip Giraldi • Unz Review • December 4, 2018

One of the local Washington television stations was doing a typical early morning honoring our soldiers schtick just before Thanksgiving. In it soldiers stationed far from home were treated to videolinks so they could talk to their families and everyone could nod happily and wish themselves a wonderful holiday. Not really listening, I became interested when I half heard that the soldier being interviewed was spending his Thanksgiving in Ukraine.

It occurred to me that the soldier just might have committed a security faux pas by revealing where he was, but I also recalled that there have been joint military maneuvers as well as some kind of training mission going on in the country, teaching the Ukrainian Army how to use the shiny new sophisticated weapons that the United States was providing it with to defend against “Russian aggression.”

Ukraine is only one part of the world where the Trump Administration has expanded the mission of democracy promotion, only in Kiev the reality is more like faux democracy promotion since Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko is clearly exploiting a situation that he himself provoked. He envisions setting himself up as a victim of Moscow to aid in his attempts to establish his own power through a security relationship with Washington. That in turn will help his bid for reelection in March 2019 elections, in which his poll numbers are currently running embarrassingly low largely due to the widescale corruption in his government. Poroshenko has already done much to silence the press in his county while the developing crisis with Russia has enabled him to declare martial law in the eastern parts of the country where he is most poorly regarded. If it all works out, he hopes to win the election and subsequently, it is widely believed, he will move to expand his own executive authority.

There also has to be some consideration the encounter with the Russians on the Kerch Strait was contrived by Poroshenko with the assistance of a gaggle of American neoconservative and Israeli advisers who have been actively engaged with the Ukrainian government for the past several years. The timing was good for Poroshenko for his own domestic political reasons but it was also an opportunity for the neocon warmongers that surround Trump and proliferate inside the Beltway to scuttle any possible meeting between a vulnerable Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin at the G20 gathering in Argentina.

The defection of Trump’s lawyer Michael Cohen, together with the assumption that a lot of anti-Trump dirt will be spilled soon, means that the American president had to be even more cautious than ever in any dealings with Moscow and all he needed was a nod of approval from National Security Adviser John Bolton and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo to cancel the encounter. A heads-of-state meeting might not have solved anything but it certainly would be better than the current drift towards a new cold war. If the United States has only one vitally important relationship anywhere it is with Russia as the two countries are ready, able and apparently willing to destroy the world under the aegis of self-defense.

Given the anti-Russian hysteria prevailing in the U.S. and the ability of the neocons to switch on the media, it should come as no surprise that the Russian-Ukrainian incident immediately generated calls from the press and politicians for the White House to get tough with the Kremlin. It is important to note that the United States has no actual national interest in getting involved in a war between Russia and Ukraine if that should come about. The two Eastern European countries are neighbors and have a long history of both friendship and hostility but the only thing clear about the conflict is that it is up to them to sort things out and no amount of sanctions and jawing by concerned congressmen will change that fact.

Other Eastern European nations that similarly have problems with Russia should also be considered provocateurs as they seek to create tension to bind the United States more closely to them through the NATO alliance. The reality is that today’s Russian Federation is not the Soviet Union and it neither aspires to nor can afford hegemony over its former allies. What it has made very clear that it does want is a modus vivendi where Russia itself is not being threatened by the West.

Recent military maneuvers in Poland and Lithuania and the stationing of new missiles in Eastern Europe do indeed pose a genuine threat to Moscow as it places NATO forces on top of Russia’s border. When Russia reacts to incursions by NATO warships and planes right along its borders, it is accused of acting aggressively. One wonders how the U.S. government would respond if a Russian aircraft carrier were to take up position off the eastern seaboard and were to begin staging reconnaissance flights. Or if the Russian army were to begin military exercises with the Cubans? Does anyone today remember the Bay of Pigs?

When it comes to international conflicts context is everything. Seeing the incident between Russia and Ukraine in Manichean terms as an example of Moscow’s aggressive instincts is satisfying in some circles, but it does not in any way reflect the reality on the ground. Internal politics of the two countries combined with deliberate fabrications that are expected to generate a certain response operate together to create a largely false narrative for both international and domestic consumption. Unfortunately, narratives have consequences: in this case, the sacrifice of the possibly beneficial meeting between Trump and Putin.

The same dynamic works vis-à-vis Washington’s other enemy du jour Iran. In the case of Russia, useless “friend” Ukraine is pulling the strings while regarding Iran it is conniving Israel and Saudi Arabia. Iran has been accused of being the world’s leading sponsor of terror, of destabilizing the Middle East, and of having a secret nuclear weapon program that will be used to attack Israel and Europe. None of those assertions are true. The terrorism tag comes from the country’s relationship with Hezbollah, which is only a terrorist group insofar as it is hostile to Israel and pledged to resist any future Israeli invasion of Lebanon. Washington and Israel have pushed the terrorism label for Hezbollah, but most Europeans have begun to disregard the designation since the group has become a part of the Lebanese government.

And regarding destabilizing the Middle East, that has largely been the end result of actions undertaken by the United States, Israel and the Saudis, while the alleged Persian nuclear weapons program is a fantasy. If someone in the U.S. national security apparatus had any brains the United States would work to improve relations with Iran real soon as the Iranians would in the long run quite likely prove to be better friends than those rascals who are currently running around using that label.

And there are other friends in unlikely places. Beleaguered British Prime Minister Theresa May is wailing loudly against a Trump threat to reveal classified documents relating to Russiagate. The real problem is that the documents apparently don’t expose anything done by the Russians. Rather, they seem to appear to reveal a plot by the British intelligence and security services working in collusion with then CIA Director John Brennan to subvert the course of the 2016 election in favor of the Deep State and Establishment favorite Hillary Clinton. How did that one work out?

So how about it? Teenagers who get in trouble often have to ditch their bad friends to turn their lives around. There is still a chance for the United States if we keep our distance from the bad friends we have been nurturing all around the world, friends who have been convincing us to make poor choices. Get rid of the ties the bind to the Saudis, Israelis, Ukrainians, Poles, and yes, even the British. Deal fairly with all nations and treat everyone the same, but bear in mind that there are only two relationships that really matter – Russia and China. Make a serious effort to avoid a war by learning how to get along with those two nations and America might actually survive to celebrate a tricentennial in 2076.

December 4, 2018 Posted by | Aletho News | , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Ex-Canadian Diplomat: UK’s Anti-Russia Info Ops Mark Decline in Western Values

Sputnik – 04.12.2018

United Kingdom’s anti-Russian propaganda operations are a sign that Western values related to freedom of expression are on the decline, former Canadian diplomat Patrick Armstrong told Sputnik.

On Monday, the international hacktivist group Anonymous released a new package of documents of the anti-Russian UK Integrity Initiative project. In particular, the documents include fake proof of Russian interference in the 2017 Catalan independence referendum disseminated among Spanish politicians and media.

The revelations undermined the credibility of the United Kingdom’s and Western media, Armstrong pointed out. “Only a couple of decades ago we were boasting about Western values of freedom of speech and thought,” Armstrong said. “Not today.”

These United Kingdom operations marked another step in “the decline of the West,” Armstrong added, as its rulers try to counter any discussion they disagree with by portraying it as fake news.

“Our rulers are determined that their stories must not be challenged and thus they try to shut down all discussion. Accept, Believe, Repeat. Anything else is ‘fake news,’” Armstrong said.

According to the first document leaked by Anonymous last month, the project was in fact a “large-scale information secret service” sponsored and created by London.

However, the latest leak suggests that “the British government goes far beyond and exploits the Integrity Initiative to solve its domestic problems inside the United Kingdom by defaming the opposition.”

Until his retirement, Armstrong was a Canadian diplomat who was a specialist on the Soviet Union and Russia. He previously served as political counselor in the Canadian Embassy in Moscow.

December 4, 2018 Posted by | Deception, Fake News, Mainstream Media, Warmongering, Russophobia | | 1 Comment

Moscow Comments on Media Reports About UK Psychological Warfare Units in Ukraine

Sputnik – 03.12.2018

MOSCOW – The United Kingdom seems to be seeking to expand its military presence in Ukraine in the run-up to the March presidential election in the country, the Russian Embassy in London said, commenting on media reports about the UK psychological warfare units allegedly stationed in Ukraine.

On Sunday, BBC News Russian reported that 1,200 servicemen of the British Army’s 77th Brigade, a top-secret unit that deals with electronic and psychological warfare, are currently stationed in Ukraine. According to the broadcaster, the UK servicemen in Ukraine have three main areas of activities: carry out military tasks on the Internet, as well as psychological and information operations.

“Earlier, we had information about the [United Kingdom] dispatching its military experts to train the Ukrainian military to conduct special operations against civilians of Donetsk and Lugansk. Now it turns out that the UK presence has expanded through, as BBC reports, conducting psychological and information operations in this country. As we see, it all happens in the run-up to the presidential election in Ukraine,” the embassy said in a statement on Sunday.

If the information is correct, the new units represent a “new element of a large-scale UK military presence in Ukraine,” the embassy noted.

“Once, the United Kingdom supported the coup in Kiev and the coming to power of the so-called ‘government of the winners’ in violation of the country’s constitution. Now we are witnessing a special operation, whose scale and consequences are yet to be assessed,” the embassy added.

The British army’s 77th Brigade is a combined regular and army reserve unit responsible for using “legitimate non-military levers” as a means “to adapt behaviors of the opposing forces.”

December 3, 2018 Posted by | Deception | , | Leave a comment

Manufacturing Truth

By CJ Hopkins | Consent Factory | December 3, 2018

If you’re one of the millions of human beings who, despite a preponderance of evidence to the contrary, still believe there is such a thing as “the truth,” you might not want to read this essay. Seriously, it can be extremely upsetting when you discover that there is no “truth” … or rather, that what we’re all conditioned to regard as “truth” from the time we are children is just the product of a technology of power, and not an empirical state of being. Humans, upon first encountering this fact, have been known to freak completely out and start jabbering about the “Word of God,” or “the immutable laws of quantum physics,” and run around burning other people at the stake or locking them up and injecting them with Thorazine. I don’t want to be responsible for anything like that, so consider this your trigger warning.

OK, now that that’s out of the way, let’s take a look at how “truth” is manufactured. It’s actually not that complicated. See, the “truth” is … well, it’s a story, essentially. It’s whatever story we are telling ourselves at any given point in history (“we” being the majority of people, those conforming to the rules of whatever system wields enough power to dictate the story it wants everyone to be telling themselves). Everyone understands this intuitively, but the majority of people pretend they don’t in order to be able to get by in the system, which punishes anyone who does not conform to its rules, or who contradicts its story. So, basically, to manufacture the truth, all you really need is (a) a story, and (b) enough power to coerce a majority of people in your society to pretend to believe it.

I’ll return to this point a little later. First, let’s look at a concrete example of our system manufacturing “truth.” I’m going to use The Guardian‘s most recent blatantly fabricated article (“Manafort held secret talks with Assange in Ecuadorian embassy“) as an example, but I could just as well have chosen any of a host of other fabricated stories disseminated by “respectable” outlets over the course of the last two years. The “Russian Propaganda Peddlers” story. The “Russia Might Have Poisoned Hillary Clinton” story. The “Russians Hacked the Vermont Power Grid” story. The “Golden Showers Russian Pee-Tape” story. The “Novichok Assassins” story. The “Bana Alabed Speaks Out” story. The “Trump’s Secret Russian Server” story. The “Labour Anti-Semitism Crisis” story. The “Russians Orchestrated Brexit” story. The “Russia is Going to Hack the Midterms” story. The “Twitter Bots” story. And the list goes on.

I’m not going to debunk the Guardian article here. It has been debunked by better debunkers than I (e.g., Jonathan Cook, Craig Murray, Glenn Greenwald, Moon of Alabama, and many others). The short version is, The Guardian‘s Luke Harding, a shameless hack who will affix his name to any propaganda an intelligence agency feeds him, alleged that Paul Manafort, Trump’s former campaign manager, secretly met with Julian Assange (and unnamed “Russians”) on numerous occasions from 2013 to 2016, presumably to conspire to collude to brainwash Americans into not voting for Clinton. Harding’s earth-shaking allegations, which The Guardian prominently featured and flogged, were based on … well, absolutely nothing, except the usual anonymous “intelligence sources.” After actual journalists pointed this out, The Guardian quietly revised the piece (employing the subjunctive mood rather liberally), buried it in the back pages of its website, and otherwise pretended like they had never published it.

By that time, of course, its purpose had been served. The story had been picked up and disseminated by other “respectable,” “authoritative” outlets, and it was making the rounds on social media. Nonetheless, out of an abundance of caution, in an attempt to counter the above-mentioned debunkers (and dispel the doubts of anyone else still capable of any kind of critical thinking), Politico posted this ass-covering piece speculating that, if it somehow turned out The Guardian‘s story was just propaganda designed to tarnish Assange and Trump … well, probably, it had been planted by the Russians to make Luke Harding look like a moron. This ass-covering piece of speculative fiction, which was written by a former CIA agent, was immediately disseminated by liberals and “leftists” who are eagerly looking forward to the arrest, rendition, and public crucifixion of Assange.

At this point, I imagine you’re probably wondering what this has to do with manufacturing “truth.” Because, clearly, this Guardian story was a lie … a lie The Guardian got caught telling. I wish the “truth” thing was as simple as that (i.e., exposing and debunking the ruling classes’ lies). Unfortunately, it isn’t. Here is why.

Much as most people would like there to be one (and behave and speak as if there were one), there is no Transcendental Arbiter of Truth. The truth is what whoever has the power to say it is says it is. If we do not agree that that “truth” is the truth, there is no higher court to appeal to. We can argue until we are blue in the face. It will not make the slightest difference. No evidence we produce will make the slightest difference. The truth will remain whatever those with the power to say it is say it is.

Nor are there many truths (i.e., your truth and my truth). There is only one truth … the official truth. The truth according to those in power. This is the whole purpose of the concept of truth. It is the reason the concept of “truth” was invented (i.e., to render any other “truths” lies). It is how those in power control reality and impose their ideology on the masses (or their employees, or their students, or their children). Yes, I know, we very badly want there to be some “objective truth” (i.e., what actually happened, when whatever happened, JFK, 9-11, the resurrection of Jesus Christ, Schrödinger’s dead cat, the Big Bang, or whatever). There isn’t. The truth is just a story … a story that is never our story.

The truth is a story that power gets to tell, and that the powerless do not get to tell, unless they tell the story of those in power, which is always someone else’s story. The powerless are either servants of power or they are heretics. There is no third alternative. They either parrot the truth of the ruling classes or they utter heresies of one type or another. Naturally, the powerless do not regard themselves as heretics. They do not regard their “truth” as heresy. They regard their “truth” as the truth, which is heresy. The truth of the powerless is always heresy.

For example, while it may be personally comforting for some of us to tell ourselves that we know the truth about certain subjects (e.g., Russiagate, 9-11, et cetera), and to share our knowledge with others who agree with us, and even to expose the lies of the corporate media on Twitter, Facebook, and our blogs, or in some leftist webzine (or “fearless adversarial” outlet bankrolled by a beneficent oligarch), the ruling classes do not give a shit, because ours is merely the raving of heretics, and does not warrant a serious response.

Or … all right, they give a bit of a shit, enough to try to cover their asses when a journalist of the stature of Glenn Greenwald (who won a Pulitzer and is frequently on television) very carefully and very respectfully almost directly accuses them of lying. But they give enough of a shit to do this because Greenwald has the power to hurt them, not because of any regard for the truth. This is also why Greenwald has to be so careful and respectful when directly confronting The Guardian, or any other corporate media outlet, and state that their blatantly fabricated stories could, theoretically, turn out to be true. He can’t afford to cross the line and end up getting branded a heretic and consigned to Outer Mainstream Darkness, like Robert Fisk, Sy Hersh, Jonathan Cook, John Pilger, Assange, and other such heretics.

Look, I’m not trying to argue that it isn’t important to expose the fabrications of the corporate media and the ruling classes. It is terribly important. It is mostly what I do (albeit usually in a more satirical fashion). At the same time, it is important to realize that “the truth” is not going to “rouse the masses from their slumber” and inspire them to throw off their chains. People are not going to suddenly “wake up,” “see the truth” and start “the revolution.” People already know the truth … the official truth, which is the only truth there is. Those who are conforming to it are doing so, not because they are deceived, but because it is safer and more rewarding to do so.

And this is why The Guardian will not be punished for publishing a blatantly fabricated story. Nor will Luke Harding be penalized for writing it. Luke Harding will be rewarded for writing it, as he has been handsomely rewarded throughout his career for loyally serving the ruling classes. Greenwald, on the other hand, is on thin ice. It will be instructive to see how far he pushes his confrontation with The Guardian regarding this story.

As for Julian Assange, I’m afraid he is done for. The ruling classes really have no choice but to go ahead and do him at this point. He hasn’t left them any other option. Much as they are loathe to create another martyr, they can’t have heretics of Assange’s notoriety running around punching holes in their “truth” and brazenly defying their authority. That kind of stuff unsettles the normals, and it sets a bad example for the rest of us heretics.

December 3, 2018 Posted by | Fake News, Mainstream Media, Warmongering, Russophobia, Timeless or most popular | , , , | 1 Comment

How Europeans Viewed the War

By Thomas DiLorenzo | The Abbeville Review | November 27, 2018

A review of Slavery, Secession, & Civil War: Views from the United Kingdom and Europe, 1856-1865 (Scarecrow Press, 2007) by Charles Adams.

At long last Charles Adams’s new book, Slavery, Secession, & Civil War: Views from the United Kingdom and Europe, 1856-1865, has been published. I’ve been anxiously waiting for this book for about five years. The book contains about 500 pages of excerpts from European (mostly British) magazines and journals on the events leading up to the war, the war itself, and the nature of the Lincoln regime. This is a most valuable effort since the mainstream Northern press was censored during the war. Foreign writers, however, “were not arrested and imprisoned,” as they were in the North, writes Adams. “They were not silenced by armed soldiers, mobs, or censorship of the mails,” and “their editors were not hauled off to prison,” to mention just a few of the more totalitarian acts of the Lincoln regime. Even today, writes Adams, the “gatekeepers” of “Civil War” history are “still making war on the South” by distorting history.

Although it is a very long book, I could not put it down. Nineteenth-century English commentators on the war were remarkably astute, well informed, and articulate in expressing their views—so astute as to make your typical mainstream “Lincoln scholar” of today sound like an uneducated boob. There were supporters of both North and South in the European press, although many Northern supporters switched sides once they began observing the behavior of Dishonest Abe and his regime. They all opposed slavery very strongly, but those who supported the Southern cause believed that the North’s invasion of the Southern states had nothing to do with freeing the slaves.

During the 1856-1860 period, writes Adams, quite a few British editors “saw the separation of the North and South as a good thing,” and believed that “slavery had no significant part in the conflict.” For example, Chamber’s Journal of Popular Literature, Science and Arts, one of the “workingman’s journals,” wrote on March 21, 1857, that a major source of conflict was that Northern business interests wanted the South to “consent to the high protective tariff,” and if they did, “anti-slavery agitation would stop.” “Antislavery agitation” meant opposition to the extension of slavery, not Southern slavery. Pretending to want to “check the progress of slavery” in this way “has been only a disguise under which to advance the interests of the [Republican] party.”

This publication also noted that the black population of the North was generally treated as inhuman. “In scarcely any of the large cities of the North did they [blacks] escape violence” at the hand of whites. It was hardly likely, therefore, that Northern whites would fight a war and die by the hundreds of thousands purely for the benefit of black strangers, as has been taught to generations of American school children.

The Edinburgh Review was a prominent British journal that observed in 1858 that “abolition was not a policy of the North,” and that secession would actually spell the end of slavery because it would no longer be propped up by the federal government’s Fugitive Slave Act. This view was echoed by other high-quality British publications such as Fraser’s Magazine and The Saturday Review, among others. Thus, the most prominent British journals agreed on the eve of the War with a statement that Alexander Stephens would make five or six years later, that slavery was actually “more secure” in the union than out of it.

A British publication called The Quarterly Review ran a long article in April 1857 on the New York State Disunion Convention. The stridently pro-North Westminster Review, founded by philosophers James Mill (father of John Stuart Mill) and Jeremy Bentham, also wrote that “Massachusetts was, we believe, the first State which organized Disunion Associations.”

Who has ever run across that fact in an American history book?! The magazine also wrote of a Massachusetts secession convention that was held around the same time in the town of Worcester.

Perhaps the most influential pro-South journal in England was All the Year Round, edited by Charles Dickens. Writing on “The American Disunion” on September 6,1861, Dickens recognized that the opposition to slavery extension in the territories was not based on moral, but political and economic grounds. It was “a question of political power between North and South” because of the Three-Fifths Clause of the Constitution, which added three persons to a state’s population count for every five slaves. This inflated the South’s representation in Congress, which in turn allowed the South to effectively oppose the North’s corporatist or mercantilist agenda of high tariffs, corporate welfare, and a government-ran central bank.

The Morrill Tariff was the main cause of the war as Dickens saw it. “Union means so many millions a year lost to the South [due to high protective tariffs on manufactured goods]; secession means the loss of the same millions to the North. The love of money is the root of this as of many, many other evils.” “The quarrel between the North and South,” Charles Dickens believed, “is … solely a fiscal quarrel.” (Dickens entertainingly wrote of how Lincoln “came across as a bit of a country bumpkin” to those Europeans who had met him.)

The Quarterly Review agreed wholeheartedly with Dickens, calling the protectionist tariff a “revolting tribute” paid to Northern businessmen by Southerners who “had been groaning for years under the crashing bondage of Northern protectionists.” This publication also noted that the Republican Party platform of 1860 supported the “inviolate rights of the states,” especially “the right of each State to order and control its own domestic institutions” (i.e., slavery); that Lincoln strongly supported his party’s platform; and that he also supported the notorious Corwin Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, which would have enshrined slavery in the Constitution explicitly. (The Amendment passed the House and Senate before Lincoln’s inauguration, with exclusively Northern votes.) These are all facts that few, if any, American school students are ever made aware of but which were well known all around the world in the 1860s.

The Athenaeum, a London journal that published such famous authors as T.S. Eliot, George Santayana, and Thomas Hardy, echoed Dickens’s views regarding the economic causes of the war, and excoriated Lincoln as a dictator and a tyrant. “President Lincoln … suspended the writ of habeas corpus. He has muzzled the press and abridged the freedom of speech…. He has, without authority of law and against the Constitution … plunged the country into war, murdered … citizens, burned … houses…. He has seized unoffending citizens [of the North], and, … has imprisoned them in loathsome dungeons.” Moreover, “under the tyrant’s plea, he is proceeding to do a great many acts and things which would more become the savage and the brute.”

Blackwood’s Magazine, which is still being published, argued in 1861 that “slavery had no significant part in the conflict.” The union, through the Fugitive Slave Act, protected slavery, said Blackwood’s, repeating the view of other British journals that secession would actually lead to the demise of slavery by nullifying that federal law. The tariff laws, on the other hand, were “ruinous to the South.” They were “the chief complaint of the South,” and “have been for thirty years oppressive and unjust.” As for Lincoln, “He may possibly be a good attorney,” the magazine wrote, “though we should never have selected him as a legal adviser.”

By 1862, Blackwood’s was denouncing the Lincoln regime as “[M]onstrous, reckless, devilish.” ‘The North seeks to make the South a desert—a wilderness of bloodshed and misery,” and all for money. “The North would league itself with Beelzebub, and seek to make a hell of half the continent.” Lincoln had “inaugurated dictatorship” and “abolished liberty” in the North. ‘Taxes had been imposed, debt incurred, and paper money issued, to the fullest amount possible.” All of this is what today’s court historians call “a new birth of freedom.”

The events of the War proved to Blackwood’s that the “Yankees” of New England “do not care a straw for the Constitution,” for “they have sacrificed both legality and liberty long ago.” Nor did the Yankees “care a cent for the abolition of slavery on the day when the South inaugurated the war by the attack on Fort Sumter.” “With Mr. Lincoln at their head,” they “would have rejoiced exceedingly if the whole race could be transported to their native Africa.”

The prestigious Economist magazine, which is still one of the preeminent publications in the world, editorialized in 1861 that what motivated the North was its obsession for empire. “They have dreamed of omnipotence and immortality; and they feel, with angry disappointment and bitter humiliation, that such a disruption as now seems almost consummated is a deplorable end to all these ambitious hopes and all this … self-glorification.” The magazine published both pro-North and pro-South articles during the course of the war, and its analysis was always very astute.

Fraser’s Magazine, a high-quality publication that won high praise from Charles Dickens, editorialized that “it appears impossible to sympathize with the North” because the North was motivated not by humanitarianism or constitutionalism, but “jealousy, fanaticism, and wounded national vanity.”

By 1865, some British journals, such as MacMillan’s magazine, were expressing fears that the U.S. government, having destroyed the Confederacy, would turn on England next. England had traded with the Confederates, and after the war the Republican Party regime did arrogantly demand “reparations” from Great Britain for this “sin.” Thus, MacMillan’s asked, “Will [the U.S. government] be tempted to employ these [military] forces in an attack upon any foreign country?—and if so, will England be the country attacked?”

Quite a few British publications understood the War as the final showdown between the true federalists (Jeffersonian states’ rights advocates) and the nationalists that animated the American government from its founding. The North British Review, for example, wrote in May of 1861 that “The whole South stand upon State rights, or a nearly sovereign exercise of power; and a majority in the North sustains Federalism, or the delegation of a portion of that power to the national Government.”

Summing up American events in 1862, the Review wrote that the essence of the War was that “twenty million say to the other ten millions, ‘You shall continue to live under a government you detest, you shall submit to laws you wish to change, you shall obey rulers you repudiate and abjure.’” Only a “‘nisi riius’ [trial] lawyer could deny the right of a state to secede,” the magazine wrote, in what appears to have been a slap at Dishonest Abe the old railroad industry’ trial lawyer.

The Review had nothing but seething contempt for the Lincoln regime. “Mr. Seward has been one of the most signal failures ever known,” it wrote in 1862. And “Mr. Stanton has made up for want of real vigour and talent, by a lawless, fitful, and ineffective violation of the civil rights of every [Northern] citizen whom he fancied he could oppress with impunity.” Furthermore, “looking over all the … chief Federal authorities … never was a country so miserably served.”

Nor was the Review fooled by the Emancipation Proclamation. It clearly understood that by applying only to “rebel territory,” the Proclamation freed no one. It was denounced as “perhaps the most grotesquely illogical and inconsistent decree ever issued by a government.” It catalogued numerous reasons why it believed the Proclamation was “a blunder and a crime.” The real cause of the War, the Review believed, was so that “a mighty conception of universal empire may be realized.”

The humorous journal Punch published hundreds of editorial cartoons related to the War. One particularly eye-catching one reproduced by Adams is entitled “The Federal Phoenix,” published in December of 1864. A giant Lincoln head is the head of a “phoenix,” a mythical bird of ancient Egypt which, according to Adams’s account, “was consumed voluntarily by fire and rose again from its own ashes to a youthful life.”

There is a blazing fire in the cartoon, and the crumbling logs in the fire represent the old Jeffersonian republic of the founders that was facing imminent destruction. Written on the logs are “low tariff and world trade”; “United States Constitution”; “states’ rights”; “habeas corpus”; and “free press.”

The Quarterly Review went so far as to say that “there was little difference … between the government of Mr. Lincoln and the Government of Napoleon III.” The reason given for this harsh condemnation was that in the Northern states “scarcely any dared to oppose” the party in power for fear of “a charge of treason”; there has been “the manipulation of elections”; “pitiless conscription”; and “disregard of personal liberty” (in the North, mind you). Moreover, “There is no Parliamentary authority whatever for what has been done. It has been done simply on Mr. Lincoln’s fiat.” He declared himself dictator, in other words, all in the name of promoting “freedom.”

This magazine was just getting started: “Mr. Lincoln is a poor plagiarist in the art of tyranny. There is nothing striking or original in his proceedings; his plan is just like that of any Old-world despot, to crush out adverse opinion by sheer force.” These awful precedents created a situation whereby “it is now the undisputed law of the United States that a President may suspend civil liberty whenever and for as long as he thinks fit.” Wilson, FDR, and George W. Bush, among others, have all proven this prediction to be prescient.

The prestigious Times (of London) turned against the North as the war proceeded, editorializing that the North was fighting for “nothing more than the old idea of Empire and national grandeur expressed in more specious language.” It harshly condemned the Republican Party for putting “empire above liberty” and having “resorted to political oppression and war rather than suffer any abatement of national power.”

Adams includes a few excerpts from French, Spanish, and Italian publications as well, but they seem quite feeble compared to the extraordinarily well-informed and incredibly well-written British essayists that he surveys.

The most striking thing to me about this collection of essays is how so many of them supported the Southern cause simply because the writers were aware of many of the essential facts about Lincoln, his regime, and the War—facts that most Americans seem completely unaware of. They all knew about his promise of everlasting support for Southern slavery, his eagerness to codify it in the Constitution, his dictatorial destruction of personal liberty in the North, and his waging of a barbaric war on the civilians of the South. They also knew that the Republican Party was the party of political plunder, and that it fully intended to plunder the South economically with protectionist tariffs and corporate welfare funded by a central bank, among other schemes.

These and many other facts have been swept under the rug by generations of American “gatekeepers” in academe and elsewhere. Most Americans today are so ignorant of this period of history that all they know about it is a few of Dishonest Abe’s political slogans and a little nineteenth century Republican Party propaganda. This propaganda is repeated over and over and over again in the public schools, by all the “Lincoln scholars,” and by (mostly) contemporary Republican Party politicians and their media mouthpieces.

The Lincoln Myth is the ideological cornerstone of the American empire and its sole claim to moral authority. Thanks to Charles Adams, we now know that during Lincoln’s time there were a great many highly educated and articulate Europeans who saw this spectacular bundle of lies for what it was.

This article was originally published in the Volume 26, Number 3 issue of Southern Partisan magazine.

December 2, 2018 Posted by | Book Review, Civil Liberties, Timeless or most popular | , | Leave a comment