Tuesday, January 14, 2020

Diffusing The Blame

The "we had help in the killing of General Soleimani" propaganda has ramped up since the assassination. This is in marked contrast to the decades-long program in which Americans were taught that we have no business knowing what our government or our spy agencies are doing, and that we must not ask for proof of any claims our rulers make, as that might "endanger sources" or "harm national security".
In May, 2017 there was an uproar when Trump warned Putin about an upcoming "ISIS" attack on a Russian airliner.
How dare he compromise sources!! He put spies at risk!! Better to lose an entire plane full of Russians than to lose one "source".
And now they blithely tell us that a "source" at the Lebanon airport let them know when the plane took off. Because that is apparently such valuable and unobtainable information that it was worth outing a source in Lebanon.

As a German explained it in "They Thought They Were Free", a book written in the 50s about how Hitler consolidated state power:
"What happened here was the gradual habituation of the people, little by little, to being governed by surprise; to receiving decisions deliberated in secret; to believing that the situation was so complicated that the government had to act on information which the people could not understand, or so dangerous that, even if the people could not understand it, it could not be released because of national security. And their sense of identification with Hitler, their trust in him, made it easier to widen this gap and reassured those who would otherwise have worried about it."

But the imperial media is now putting out article after article claiming that the US was helped by Israeli and other spies to pinpoint the general's whereabouts as he arrived at Baghdad Airport, on a diplomatic mission to negotiate peace between Iran and Saudi Arabia. The US had been informed of his itinerary and the time of his arrival, but the premise is that the US would be unable to blow someone up with a Hellfire missile (although they have been doing it for years) at the airport (which was one of the first places they seized in the invasion of 2003) without Israel providing the coordinates. This diffuses the blame, so that the US doesn't have to take sole responsibility for the atrocity they committed.

In September, 2016, the US attacked an outpost of Syrian soldiers who were protecting the airport at Deir Ezzor, which was used by Syria to bring food to the citizens under siege by ISIS. The US killed 100 Syrian soldiers, allowing ISIS to overrun their post. They also lied to Russia about it, which meant that the attack went on for an hour before the Russians got there to attack ISIS and drive them back, thereby saving the lives of the people of Deir Ezzor.

This was a horrendous war crime and caused a major uproar. Afterwards, the UK, Australia and Denmark came forward and confessed that they also had participated in the attack. All of them claimed that they "accidentally" had bombed the outpost for an hour without realizing what they were doing.

I find these confessions difficult to believe. It seems that American lackeys were used to diffuse responsibility for the war crime in Deir Ezzor.

And I find it equally difficult to believe that the US could not assassinate a general, at an airport they controlled, without help from Israel. This puts me at odds with people who cling to the belief that the US is a force for good in the world, (thereby agreeing with the US State Dept, see the letter they wrote to the Iraqi Parliament explaining why they would not comply with the unanimous vote that the US should withdraw from its occupation of Iraq), and would never think of committing assassinations, invasions, coups, sanctions, bombings, drone kills, or any other acts of aggression unless forced to do so by Israel. So be it. I refuse to believe absurdities, in order to support atrocities, and I don't care if other people prefer to cling to their comforting illusions.
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Sunday, January 12, 2020

Why Such A Public And Brutal Assassination?

It has been one week since General Soleimani was blown to bits and burned by a US drone strike, as he arrived at the Baghdad Airport as a diplomat conveying a response to Saudi Arabia from Iran. Iraq was facilitating peace negotiations between Iran and Saudi Arabia.
"“I was supposed to meet Soleimani at the morning the day he was killed, he came to deliver me a message from Iran responding to the message we delivered from Saudi to Iran” Iraqi PM,Adil Abdul-Mahdi, said.

Peace in the Middle East is an existential threat to what are euphemistically called "US interests". US interests are not just oil company and military-industrial complex interests. The US Empire's power over the world relies heavily on having the dollar as the world's reserve currency. The petro-dollar, initiated after the US dropped the gold standard in the 70s, means that every nation in the world that uses oil (that is, every nation) must obtain dollars in order to buy the black gold on which industry and transportation relies. This means that every nation must sell something of value to the USA, whether resources, labor or commodities, in order to get the dollars needed to buy oil.

Trump and the media tell us that the general was a threat to Americans, because fear is the strongest motivator of American's support for the murderous rampage of the US military around the world. But the general has been on the battlefield fighting actual terrorists who threaten the people of the Middle East for many years. Why kill him last week? If he had actually been a threat to the US for all those years, the US could have killed him on the battlefield, since the general was involved in many battles against ISIS and other vicious terrorists.

So why blow him up at the Baghdad airport, along with the head of the Iraqi PMU, which is also an effective fighter against ISIS and other terrorists? He was there as a diplomat, invited by the Iraqi government, and under their protection, which the US ignored in their brutal murder, (and is the reason why the Iraqi Parliament voted to tell the US to get their troops out of Iraq).

A week's worth of spin has been that this was Trump's impulsive decision. That doesn't fly, when you see the widespread support by Congress and the entire media for the assassination. The outrage from people in the Middle East and around the world has been censored by social media platforms. The entire McResistance supports the murder. This kind of united support for an action of Trump is unusual.

As Michael Hudson says: "The mainstream media are carefully sidestepping the method behind America’s seeming madness in assassinating Islamic Revolutionary Guard general Qassim Suleimani to start the New Year. The logic behind the assassination this was a long-standing application of U.S. global policy, not just a personality quirk of Donald Trump’s impulsive action. His assassination of Iranian military leader Suleimani was indeed a unilateral act of war in violation of international law, but it was a logical step in a long-standing U.S. strategy. It was explicitly authorized by the Senate in the funding bill for the Pentagon that it passed last year.
The assassination was intended to escalate America’s presence in Iraq to keep control the region’s oil reserves, and to back Saudi Arabia’s Wahabi troops (Isis, Al Quaeda in Iraq, Al Nusra and other divisions of what are actually America’s foreign legion) to support U.S. control o Near Eastern oil as a buttress o the U.S. dollar. That remains the key to understanding this policy, and why it is in the process of escalating, not dying down."

Oddly, the media is dropping it's usual "we can't tell you anything about our methods of information gathering or operational methods because you have no business knowing our sources" line, and bragging about spies in Lebanon and Iraq. This is ridiculous, of course, because the US military already knows the coordinates of the Baghdad Airport and Soleimani's flight on a commercial airline was no secret to them, since Iraq and Iran had notified them of his arrival. It is bizarre for the media to spin this knowledge into cloak-and-dagger fantasy, when they have spent so many years telling Americans that it is a major secret that we have spies and they do spy stuff.

So the spin is that the general was a Bad Guy and that he Deserved To Die and that killing him at the Baghdad Airport was a major success of the military, with help from our allies and spies.

Actually, to quote more from the Hudson article: "... without troops, it is not possible to invade a country to take it over.
The corollary of this perception is that democracies have only two choices when it comes to military strategy: They can only wage airpower, bombing opponents; or they can create a foreign legion, that is, hire mercenaries or back foreign governments that provide this military service.
Here once again Saudi Arabia plays a critical role, through its control of Wahabi Sunnis turned into terrorist jihadis willing to sabotage, bomb, assassinate, blow up and otherwise fight any target designated as an enemy of “Islam,” the euphemism for Saudi Arabia acting as U.S. client state. (Religion really is not the key; I know of no ISIS or similar Wahabi attack on Israeli targets.)
The United States needs the Saudis to supply or finance Wahabi crazies. So in addition to playing a key role in the U.S. balance of payments by recycling its oil-export earnings are into U.S. stocks, bonds and other investments, Saudi Arabia provides manpower by supporting the Wahabi members of America’s foreign legion, ISIS and Al-Nusra/Al-Qaeda. Terrorism has become the “democratic” mode of today U.S. military policy."

The peace mission of General Soleimani was a threat to the owners of the USA, because if Saudi Arabia stops being an enforcer of the petro-dollar, drops support of terrorists and makes peace in the Middle East, the US Empire will fall.

That is why the US blew him to charred bits, last Sunday at the Baghdad Airport.

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Wednesday, January 8, 2020

The Plot So Far

The Exposition:
In Iran, the US overthrew their democratically elected president in 1953 and put a dictator into power, training his brutal police force, SAVAK. In 1979 the Iranians overthrew the dictator and religious fundamentalists took over, and have ruled since. The US began claiming in 1979 that Iran was 5 years away from having nuclear weapons. So far, they have been wrong.
In Iraq, the US backed Saddam Hussein in his rise to power. After the 1979 Iranian revolution, the US backed Iraq's attack on Iran and the 9 year war which followed, killing millions of Iranians and Iraqis. (The criminal Oliver North ran a guns-for-drugs operation out of the White House basement, though, which illegally supplied Iran with weapons, run through Israel, in return for money which he used to funnel to the death squads attacking the people of Nicaragua. Oliver North is still not in prison for these murderous and traitorous crimes.) In 1991, Saddam Hussein told the US ambassador, April Glaspie, that he planned to attack Kuwait to stop them from slant-drilling into Iraq's oil fields, and she gave him the go-ahead. The US then used his attack as an excuse to attack Iraq, killing thousands, and in the 90s maintained draconian sanctions on Iraq. Clinton's secretary Madeline Albright, explained that killing 500,000 Iraqi children seemed "worth it" to the US. However, in 2003, the US invaded Iraq and killed far more people. The US remains in Iraq, occupying military bases and an enormous embassy in Baghdad.

Recent Events:
Dec 29, 2019, a missile attack on a US-occupied military base in Kirkuk killed one American contractor. (The US refused to name the contractor for over a week, leading to widespread speculation that they were lying. They released his name Jan. 7, and it is now clear why they only referred to him as "an American" for over a week's worth of propaganda. His name is Nawres Waleed Hamid.)
The US responded by bombing Iraqi and Syrians 450 kilometers away, on the border of Iraq and Syria. They killed 32 Iraqis and injured 55 others. These were soldiers defending the border from ISIS.
Enraged, Iraqis stormed the US Embassy in Baghdad, setting fire to the reception area. They then left without harming any Americans. Trump is said to have called the leader of the PMU militia, Abu Mahdi al-Muhandes, to thank him for helping to defuse the situation.
But on January 2, the US massacred a top general of Iran, who was a very effective fighter of ISIS, as he arrived in Baghdad to help negotiate peace with Iraq, Iran and Saudi Arabia. General Soleimani had informed the US that he was arriving on a commercial flight to the Baghdad Airport on a diplomatic mission. The US used a drone missile, in a very cowardly act of murder. They also killed Abu Mahdi al-Muhandes, and 6 other people.
First the US claimed that they had "evidence" that the general was making plans to "harm Americans", but they didn't actually have any evidence, so they changed the story to "he already killed hundreds of Americans". But only 89 Americans have been killed in all of Iraq and Syria since 2014, which is when ISIS rolled out and Soleimani began fighting them. So then they changed the story to "Americans killed in the original invasion of Iraq who we blame Iran for, and now switch the blame to General Soleimani". And they seem to be sticking to that story. They also told us that the murder would "make Americans safer" and then they told all Americans in the area, except for the cannon fodder, to leave immediately.

Then Pompeo went on TV and announced that they were done murdering and now wanted to de-escalate the situation.

General Soleimani was a hero in Iran (and in many other countries) and millions of people came out to mourn his death and to demand revenge.
The US media told Americans that people were dancing in the streets with joy, but that story didn't last, since thanks to social media (another reason our rulers want to censor it) people could see that the millions of people were not joyful. So then they told us that the people had been bribed with food to come out (see an Iranian ridicule that story). Clearly, though, there were not enough food trucks for the massive crowds, so the story the "legitimate" media has settled on is that Iranian Revolutionary Guards are going door to door with machine guns and forcing people into the streets to mourn. Sounds legit, legitimate media!
Meanwhile, terrorists in Idlib Province, were actually dancing in celebration, since the US had removed two of their biggest foes.

Last Sunday, in response to the assassination on their soil, the Iraqi Parliament voted to have all American military to leave their country. The US Marine commander in Iraq responded by writing a letter to them saying that the US respects democracy and national sovereignty and they were making plans to leave.

Joke is on him! Clearly, he listened to the classes at West Point on democracy and national sovereignty, but missed the wink-and-nod part.

Pompeo and a general safely ensconced in Washington came out within the hour and announced that the letter was not sent, OK, it was sent, but it was a rough draft, and it wasn't even signed (it was), and the US had no intention of paying any mind to democracy OR national sovereignty, and the 5,000 US troops sitting (like ducks) in Iraq were not going to leave just because Iraqis think that democracy means they get to decide what the US does in their country. The US troops were left in Iraq as human shields, which must make them very happy.

Last night, Jan 7, Iran responded to the provocations by launching missiles into an US-occupied military base in Iraq.
First, the US announced that 30 Iraqi soldiers had been killed, but no Americans. (So that's all right, then). But now they are saying that no one was killed at all.
Iran says they killed 80 Americans, but you know how they lie. You can't trust them, you can only trust what our rulers tell us.

US war mongers are screaming for more Iraqi and Iranian blood, cause that is how they do, but so far, it looks like cooler heads will prevail.

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Saturday, January 4, 2020

Lies and Damned Lies - The Landscape of US Media

Three points of clarification, to push back on the disinformation that the Dems are pushing.

One: An illegal act of assassination does not become legal if one gang of criminals informs another gang of their intentions.

Two: Obama was NOT a force for peace. After Cheney was shut down by a NIE from all agencies in 2007 (a real NIE, not the Brennan Fake of Jan, 2017) and by CentCom Commander Admiral Fallon, who declared "No war on my watch", the US ruling class and the imperial media dropped the ''Iran is trying to make a nuclear bomb" fake news that the Bush administration had been pushing.
But when Obama came in in 2009, he picked up the gauntlet and started in talking the Cheney trash talk as if nothing had been disproven.
Admiral Fallon was gone and the media fell into line.

The nuclear deal was set up to fail. It was NOT a move of peace, since it was based on false propaganda in the first place.

Three: US imperialism is not based on the whims of the president, nor does the US go to war because of the personal desires of whatever puppet is in the White House.

The US did not destroy Yugoslavia (starting in 1991) because of a blow job in 1998, Bush did not invade Iraq because Saddam tried to kill his daddy, and the US did not assassinate Soleimani because of an impeachment (which is stalled in the House anyway).

US foreign policy is based on imperialism and control of resources, especially oil. It is simplistic to think otherwise.
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Friday, January 3, 2020

The United States of Amnesia

Is it really amnesia, or is it programmed idiocy? How is it that humans, especially Americans, can be persuaded to forget the past in their analysis of current events?

The outrageous and criminal act of cold-blooded murder of the courageous General Soleimani by the jackals of the US military-industrial war mongers, apparently under the direction of Dominionist Mike Pompeo, is a blatant provocation and an invitation to a major war.

He fought ISIS valiantly, actually participating in the field, (unlike the cowardly generals of the USA, who sit safely in the US directing their criminal destruction of entire societies and peoples). And the way the Americans killed him, with a Hellfire missile shot safely from a drone, is equivalent to shooting a man in the back, an act of extreme treachery and cowardice.

But the reaction of many people is amazingly myopic and shallow. I am amazed to see so many commenters confidently announcing that this military operation was a one-man attempt by Trump to distract Americans from the impeachment circus and/or to win re-election.

How is it possible to live in the Imperial Center of the World, in the country which provides the military muscle to keep the global elite in wealth and power, to have a personal history of listening to talking heads pushing war after war, coup after coup, assassination after assassination, year after year, decade after decade.....and to treat each new Imperial Attack as something new and baffling? Why would the US attack another country? No one can explain such anomalies. It is a mystery, each and every one.

If people look into history at all, in this latest lead-up to war, they confidently assert that the bombing of Kosovo in 1999 was due to Clinton's 1998 impeachment, not the ongoing destruction of Yugoslavia the US had been engaged in since 1991, and so therefore, the assassination of the ISIS-fighting Iranian general must also have nothing to do with the long history of US attempts to control Iran, starting with the US-backed coup of the democratically elected president of Iran in 1953.

How can that coup, and the subsequent brutal reign of the US-backed Shah, until the revolution of 1979, be forgotten?
The US has wanted Iran and its oil back since that revolution, 40 years now. They got their puppet, Saddam Hussein, to attack Iran right after the revolution. A million dead, 10 years of war, but Iran did not fall.
In 2001, General Wesley Clark told us that Iran was on the list of 7 countries for the Pentagon to destroy.
When the US attacked Iraq in 2003, the saying was ”Real men go to Tehran”.
Bush, Cheney, Obama, Bolton and Trump have all been sabre rattling for decades, with sanctions, assassinations, cyber attacks and Color Revolution attempts.

But, yeah, this was a spur-of-the-moment decision by Trump, to avoid impeachment and/or get re-elected. Sure.
It’s all about the US political circus, right? Not Full Spectrum Dominance, or control of the world’s oil.

This would be a good time to review the importance of oil to industrial society, the previous wars fought over its procurement and the ongoing scramble for the last bits that has increased since the world hit Peak Oil, sometime in the last decades. Please review this one hour video, which is entertaining as well as informative, to understand why the US invaded Iraq, Libya, Syria, Sudan, etc., and why the US killed the general who was so effective at saving the Middle East from the ISIS terrorists sent to destabilize so many countries.

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Wednesday, January 1, 2020

New Year, New Push For Censorship

NPR has a serious-sounding expert telling us that we need alternative health websites shut down, because they are giving information that is unscientific and might cause people harm. For instance, telling people that echinacea can cure chlamydia.

Like when the World Health Organization convinced African men that if they submitted to circumcision of their penises, they would be immune from AIDS? Like that? And now the countries in which most men were convinced to go through with that particular mutilation are also the countries with the highest rate of AIDS? Like that?

You could make a case that the WHO waffled about their recommendations and didn't actually say that the men would be immune, rather like alternative medical sites usually waffle and say that people should consult their doctors for serious illnesses.

But I'm betting that millions of men who made the choice to have the tip of their penis removed, made it because they thought that it would make them immune, not "slightly less likely to become infected".

So who is the irresponsible vendor of Fake News?

The last 2 years of internet and social media censorship, onerous though it may seem to those targeted, were only the beginning of a mass shutdown of what may be put into one broad category "Information and Ideas Your Rulers Do Not Want You To Entertain".

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Sunday, December 29, 2019

The Transubstantiation of Human Biology in the New Religion

Transubstantiation is the Catholic belief that the bread and wine they consume during Mass is actually the body and blood of Christ. For some centuries in Europe, the Catholic Church had the power to force the population into believing this, using torture and murder to enforce their decree. Eventually, people rebelled and during the Enlightenment the principles of freedom of thought, religion and speech spread widely among the population.

When England was ruled by autocratic monarchs, the entire population was forced to convert religions when the throne changed hands. I have always found this fascinating. One day you're a Catholic and the next you're a Protestant? Didn't that cause consternation? Did no one rebel?

Here we are in the 21st century, and England, as well as her former colonies, are being forced into a new religion in an audacious and Orwellian grab for our minds by our new ruling overlords. As Orwell, Arendt and others have pointed out, forcing people to chant something that is clearly not true is the ultimate in power. It seems that our rulers have become very confident in their abilities to control the citizens and our beliefs and behavior.

How is it possible that entire sections of the population now profess to believe that sex is not real, as demanded by the Establishment? Is there anything more basic to human life than the division of the sexes into male and female? Is there anything more basic to the diversity of life on this planet than sexual reproduction among most life forms, from plant life to animal life? How can our opinion makers be so audacious as to set for themselves the task of forcing humans to deny the most basic facts and reality?

A heretic named Maya Forester, in England, stood up to the new religion, tweeting out her opposition to a new law which would allow anyone in the UK to "self ID" and gain the backing of the government to declare themselves a different sex than the one determined at conception, or, as the new doctrine chants "the doctor assigns at birth". Yes, the new scripture tells us that the age old maternal question, when a woman delivers a child, "Is it a boy or a girl?" is now randomly decided by the birth attendant, not noted by everyone in the delivery area.

This you must believe. Maya does not, and was fired by her employer for stating so, not while she was at work, doing her job that has absolutely nothing to do with religion, but on her non-paid hours of life. In other words, wage slaves are now considered to be slaves on their off hours, as well as the hours they put in working for their employer.

Maya appealed to the court which is set up to protect the beliefs of UK citizens from the whims of their employers, but the court ruled that her belief that sex is immutable and cannot be changed by plastic surgery, hormones, or "self declaration" is such a horrendous belief that she is too horrible a heretic to be allowed to continue to work on tax policy for the foundation.

The entire Establishment, as shown by this ruling, is firmly behind the new religion. The government, the courts, the media, the schools and universities, the medical industrial complex, the military, the prisons, the police, social workers and librarians are all pushing the agenda and enforcing the decrees.

Transgender is the new transubstantiation, belief in biology is the new heresy and speaking the truth that every one on the planet knew to be true until a couple of years ago, is the new blasphemy. The English language is being forcibly changed, and the newly invented blasphemies of "misgendering" and "deadnaming" (both still unknown by Spellcheck) are strictly enforced. Firing and banning are the new methods of the Inquisitors, and the frothing mobs of the Woke are the new villagers, eager to attend the hangings and burnings at the stake.

JK Rowling, a popular author of fantasy books for children, made the mistake of standing up for reality, and the torch-wielding mobs turned on her with fury.

She tweeted into the public square this mild stand for freedom....
and the howling has not stopped.

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