Hillary Clinton: A Career Criminal

Anonymous, the mostly toothless hackster activists, do put out good videos. (There’s something to be said for a bark, even when there is little bite.) Though not one of their snazzier productions, here is a fact-packed 25-minute rundown on Hillary’s loooooong and horrific record of crimes, corruption, and abuses of power. With time to do little more than list the sordid scandals, the video does not even get around to mentioning her leading role in international war crimes, from Libya to Honduras, that have left countless thousands of innocents dead (and the Clintons rich). These are crimes in which the full US administration and both political “parties” are fully complicit. (And the US taxpayer, in very concrete ways, “responsible.”)

 

 

Update:

Here is the entire documentary, just out (I haven’t watched it yet).

 

 

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Karmic Retribution: The Western Alliance Self-Deconstructs

note: this has been published at SOTT.net

http://www.sott.net/article/316785-Karmic-retribution-as-the-Western-alliance-self-deconstructs

Introduction: Prospects for Syria in light of elections and the Geneva talks

In Syria, elections were carried out last Wednesday, quite free and fair in respect to the primaries in the US. The numbers of women, Christians, and Sunnis elected ought to dispel the calumnies of the Western press, that the Assad regime is strictly Alawite sectarian. (To begin with, Bashar al-Assad is married to a Sunni.) These elections harbor a tenuous promise that is echoed by the semi-success of the Syrian ceasefire.

However, as the Geneva talks resume, few have hopes for quick permanent fixes. The crucial parties to the negotiations have not yet been settled in a logical manner. Kurds have been sidelined and the Saudi-assembled HNC have been included, and several foreign powers seem intent to poor fuel on the fire of still simmering tensions. Most manifestly, these naysayers and provocateurs include Turkey and Saudi Arabia, but the US and other NATO allies are also continuing their covert support for ISIS, al-Nusra and other terrorist factions. They still want Assad out, and are happy to use the vilest means to get there.

Sad to say, despite a tenuous but mostly successful 6-week ceasefire in Syria, the US and its allies also continue to talk out of both sides of their mouths, as they try to wriggle out of the corner into which they have been forced by the events of the last six months. Having been forced to acknowledge the success of Russia, the Syrian Arab Army (SAA) and its Iranian and Hezbollah allies in mostly clearing the terrorists from the corridor of important cities in the west of Syria, the US now tries to claim credit for these successes as much as the gullible Western press will swallow that lie.

The US State Dept also continues to propose, or threaten rather, a literally and forthrightly divisive “Plan B”, which is essentially the Western Plan A re-gurgitated in the wake of Assad’s successes. This still envisions the fragmentation of Syria into minute and powerless statelets, including a tiny Alawite one for Assad (not recognizing that much of his cabinet, many of his generals, and most of his army are Sunni, or even Christian.)

The West continues to act in support of several opposing sides of the conflict; “their” Kurds and “their” takfiri terrorists are now fighting each other with US arms, as I mentioned last time. Raytheon can’t complain, but this does not seem just the usual omnivorous profit-seeking motive of the military-industrial complex. Rather, it may reflect deep fissures in the Western alliances, and within the US power structure itself.

Deconstructing US “Walks” and “Talks” Following the Ceasefire

In recent weeks, the US has engaged in sporadic anti-terrorist activity, mainly aimed at high profile terrorist leaders who may harbor incriminating information about their puppet-masters, while continuing to stream arms to its anti-Assad proxies, including ISIS and Jubhat al-Nusra. These are the two groups all parties at Geneva have been forced to conclude are ‘terrorist’. These two groups continue to be fair game even during the truce.

Some US cooperation with Russia is creeping into relations after stark refusals to cooperate six months ago, but this plainly is only because the US is now cornered, its covert operations increasingly rendered overt. The US does not want to be subject to the terrifying “information warfare” waged by Russia against Erdogan after their fighter was shot down over Syria. Kerry gave unusual compliments to Putin recently, and Putin returned them to Obama. Russia and the US are now exchanging intel on Jubhat al-Nusra, even though many, hier bei uns, are still reluctant to call David Petraeus’ favorite proxy “terrorists”.

In fact, the US is up to its old tricks, even as fresh background has emerged about USArms-Running International, from Eastern Europe to ISIS in Syria and Iraq. Poland plays an important role in this as well as it better-known anti-Russian role as chief puppet belligerent among the old Warsaw Pact members now beholden to “Western democracy”.

In other old news, newly emerging, a former CIA operative who says he had “infiltrated” both Taliban and al-Qaeda, complains that we could have taken out Assad in 2012 with these connections, but Obama refused to grant the go-ahead.

In other ongoing duplicitous behaviour, the US and its partners continue to engage in a terrorist “catch-and-release” program. You couldn’t get Ankara, Paris or Brussels without the help of police and intel officialdom which is plainly collaborative with Erdogan’s thugs.

I often have commented on the oil-for-arms trade that implicates Turkey most obviously, along with the US Gulf allies, but which also could not operate without Western banks, intelligence agencies, and political apparati. I too have linked several times to VT’s reporting on Turkey’s dismantling and theft of entire Syrian factories. But, perhaps surprising given my background (or expected), I have not mentioned another avenue of terrorist-trade-with-the-West: in stolen antiquities. At least 26 million dollars worth, it is estimated, have been shipped from Syria through Turkey mostly to Western connoisseurs. Erdogan no doubt gets as much a bargain on these as he does ISIS-Barzani oil thefts from Baghdad and Damascus.

Despite a few high profile attacks on ISIS compounds and leaders, US forces have been caught supplying and supporting the terrorists in numerous ways over the last several weeks of “ceasefire.” Iraqi police have photographed US aircraft dropping “tons of weapons” to ISIS groups, in one report. US food shipments have been found in the Beiji oil refinery in Iraq, recently re-captured from ISIS, in another. In Yemen, the US also continues to supply ISIS in a time-honored way, by leaving vast quantities behind while suddenly fleeing. Several accounts report ongoing shipments of US weapons and supplies to Jubhat al-Nusra, the other terrorist group outside the ceasefire.

“PLAN B”

This is in fact, precisely what the US has said it would do, in so many words. We must merely note that it continues to call ISIS and al-Nusra “moderate rebels” when it makes public announcements about fresh attempts to send weapons and recruits to Syria. As the Wall Street Journal reported, telling more than it knows, “the CIA and its regional partners” plan to ship more powerful weapons to Syria, including the anti-aircraft weaponry McCain has requested many times. (In fact, the Turkish intel agency MIT operates with the same impunity and autonomy and perhaps independent sources of illegal funding that the CIA does). Now, think about flying over the Middle East with Manpads in the hands of these nutcases and mercenaries.

“Diplomatically”, the State Department threatens a Plan B of Syrian fragmentation while militarily the Pentagon has revived its arm-and-equip training program for ‘rebels’. If the Obama-Dempsey consensus was to let the proxies do our fighting, and the nagging Bushies and Clintonites were ‘boots on the ground’ kind of people, present policy seems to be “a little bit of everything.”The US continues to enhance its military operations and that of its allies both in eastern Europe and the Middle East. B-52s, great for carpet bombing, are going to the US airbase in Qatar.

Twelve US generals are already in Iraq. After keeping the US presence under wraps, officials now admit several thousand troops are in Iraq, and several dozen SpecOps in Syria. The actual numbers are have been much higher, of course, but now Obama announces that more troops and Apache helicopters — all unasked for and unwanted by the Iraqi government — are headed that way. Even though in respect to the CIA (10,000 terrorists trained and equipped), the Pentagon failed miserably to put viable fighters on the ground (only “four or five”; thats single digits, not hundreds or thousands), General Allen is braving ridicule and proposing to dust off the old program and give it another go.

Far more threatening than the curiously inept Pentagon programs are those hailing from Langley, VA. The CIA is leading the movement to supply our terrorist proxies with anti-aircraft weaponry. This comes as the US tells Russia to back off from its ceasefire attacks on al-Nusra in Aleppo, because some FSA fighters, protected by the truce, have been embedded with al-Nusra and are dying in the SAA attacks. These FSA now sue for renewed war.

Plan B is ready and will be operative if the truce fails, CIA director John Brennan told Russian officials. This bellicosity is echoed by the State Department and the White House in a rare synchronization of rhetoric. “All bets will be off” Brennan says, and “the outside patrons will double and triple down” throwing more lethal weaponry, including anti-aircraft missiles, into Syria. Of course, all sides fail to say that those “outside patrons” include US, as well as the fingered, but unnamed Turkey and Saudi Arabia.

Of course, it is easy to see the US is doing everything it can to undermine the ceasefire so it may proceed with Plan B, identical in most respects to the Deconstruct Syria plan of Brookings Institute resident idiot Michael O’Hanlon. You can see him here on Peter LaVelle’s Crosstalk, avoiding questions and withering under the criticism of the host and guests Michael Maloof, and Kamal Alam.

Plan B is the Deconstruct Syria plan of fragmentation in the guise of federalization. It is an old tactic of the ‘divide-and-conquer’ type; a set of petite mini-states unable to oppose Israel and other allied interests. These plans are various; those emanating from Israel are well-known predecessors to O’Hanlon‘s, but also plans for a strictly Syrian Kurdistan, under Ankara’s thumb in the manner of Erbil, has been a long-running joint venture of France’s neo-colonial elites and Turkey.

Houses Divided at Home : Karmic Retribution

If Iraq and Syria are houses divided, so has the US been similarly cursed, a befitting karmic retribution. The ‘battles’ between neo-cons and liberal interventionists in 21st century US policy have been pillow fights mostly; they agreed that world conquest and plunder was the aim but differed only on the means.

A deeper fissure now perhaps appears between the insane and the merely imperial, the chickenhawks, Pentagon warhawks and the CIA leadership on the one side, and those who realize what the global chessboard really looks like on the other. Some still hope and pray for the arrival of the mythical ‘white hats’ in these agencies who actually intend to work with Russia to clean Syria of ISIS and other terrorist factions and who actually respect national sovereignty of foreign nations and international law. Don’t hold your breath.

At least we must ask, if the fact that the US both supports and occasionally batters ISIS reflects a duplicitous or a fragmented policy, or rather, if it reflects two entirely separate policies and strategies conjured up by entirely different factions within the military and intel ‘communities.’

As the battle for northern Syria enters its final chapter, Pentagon-backed Kurds are now battling CIA-backed al-Nusra fighters, even as Turkish backed Turkmen battle Turkish backed ISIS in order to forestall the Kurdish re-possession of their homelands.

While the US press makes the US out to be the only rational player in the area, readers of alternative and world press are aware that, on the whole, the US strikes the most bellicose pose, not only in Syria and along other parts of the Russia frontier, but in the South China Sea as well.

Before addressing further ‘what divides Obama’s house’, let us look at the official ‘unified’ line on dividing Syria.

Certainly Turkey and Saudi Arabia, both teetering in their official approval ratings, still have avid supporters in the administration, and by all appearances, especially in the CIA. This long has been a command center of the Bush syndicate and the neo-con paranoiac-aggressive complex. Indeed, the CIA was the operational front of Empire even in the preceding Age of Allen Dulles.

The “deconstruct Syria” narrative is maintained on the basis, in part, of a historical lie, that ancient and in-erasable Sunni-Shi’a difference is behind the problem that only US conquest and asset-stripping can solve. (In fact, under the Ottomans and for most centuries previous, Sunni and Shia, Alawi and Druze, Christian and Jew, occupied Syria peacefully with many sects among each group.

Ex-Pentagon chief Robert Gates recently reiterated the false narrative that the rise of ISIS was due to the anti-Sunnism of the Iraqi government under PM al-Maliki. We may agree that sectarian tensions were greatly exacerbated by the destruction of Iraq by US forces, without suggesting that Sunnis necessarily become liver-eating idolators when Shi’a assume the Prime Ministry.

This assessment also contradicts DIA reports, confirmed by DIA chief General Michael Flynn, that the rise of ISIS was the “willful intent” of US officialdom, despite the contrary wishes of his agency. As I mentioned last post, the DIA seems to have its head on relatively straight. It was on their recommendation that Obama backed off on attacking Damascus in 2013 in the wake of shoddy intel concerning the chemical weapons attacks in Ghouta. The DIA stands out in a similar way in Sy Hersh’s articles on the Obama administrations support for radical and unvetted extremists to throw at Assad, and in General Flynn’s several criticisms.

But lo and behold, a process of Syrian unification actually seems underway, on the ground. So the recent elections testify, and military successes foretell further gains. Do the deconstructionists recognize this? They would like not to.

With Russian air support the SAA took back the ancient desert emporium, Palmyra, from ISIS. The US State Department spokesman Mark Toner was simply unable to contain his ambivalence or rather displeasure about the change of hands of Palmyra, the crucial capture before a projected attack on Deir Ezzor. Now, the US is now asking Russia to go easy on the terrorists in Aleppo however, even though most belong to Jubhat al-Nusra, al-Qaeda in Syria, with whom General Petraeus publically called for alliance several months back.

Bona-fide US attitudes are also mirrored in their support for terrorist groups still represented in international negotiations. For instance, Jaysh al-Islam, which all sides acknowledge used chemical weapons against Kurdish civilians last week, continues to be claimed as ‘moderate’ by the West and its disruptive antics supported at Geneva.

Duplicity is characteristic throughout the US-led alliance. So is internal division, just what they wish on their principle ‘others.’

Of course, Turkey’s support for the terrorists of Syria and Iraq will continue at least as long as the House of Erdogan (so different that the House of Osman and so much like the House of Bush) subsists in power in Turkey. However, in this war of all against all (just what the corporate military complex loves) Erdogan’s proxies for once have taken active measures against ISIS, with which, as we have several times reported, Erdogan long has carried on a lucrative arms-for-oil business, with the help of the Barzani regime in Erbil, BP, HSBC, and steady Israeli oil purchases.

In this case, hatred for the Kurdish YPG ran deeper than love of takfiri terrorism. If the Kurds control the northern Syria borders, this will constitute an existential threat for Turkey as dire as the mere existence of Russia does for the US neo-cons.The SAA continues to inch towards the capture of Aleppo, and, with the help of the Kurds, to seal off the supply corridors north to Turkey. ISIS and al-Nusra, both equipped with US arms by Turkey, have been hit hard in these areas.

So, in recent weeks, Turkey pushed its Turkmen proxies to pre-empt a Kurdish occupation of former takfiri terrorist territory on its southern frontiers. Unfortunately for them, their acclaimed capture of the town of al-Rai from ISIS, was reversed a few days later. As we will see, Turkey is not the only country whose proxies and perhaps national operatives are working on both sides of the conflict. The US is similarly dis-united.

Until Azaz and the border regions north of Aleppo are taken, fresh ‘rebel’ recruits, and steady arms shipments will continue to enter Syria through these routes, even though they seem ever less capable of replacing takfiri losses. Nevertheless, the steady supplies enflame a Syria in truce only in precious portions of the country.

Russia and Syria in the views of US officialdom : Between Bellicosity and Deceit

The US press has adjusted its tone, just slightly, in regards to Putin, and has been forced to regard his Syrian intervention more positively. So has US officialdom in a more constrained fashion, even as many still hold to the old US tenets that Assad must go, and ISIS may stay. Obama concurred with Jeffrey Goldstein in his legacy Atlantic interview that the Russian leader who has so badly outplayed the West on the world stage was “nasty, brutish, and short,” but Kerry recently acknowledged he had learned something from his trip to Moscow, where he was ribbed by Putin for “carrying his own baggage“, a mysterious briefcase Kerry clutched while descending from the plane upon arrival for meetings with Putin and Russian officials.

Following those meetings, Kerry said: “It’s fair to say that today we have a better understanding of the decisions made by Russian President Vladimir Putin and recognize which path we should take going forward. …We have before us a long path, but I’m leaving with a better understanding of what steps we need to implement with our partners.”

Kerry rarely pronounces words in Moscow that are not reversed once he returns to DC. His are the threats that a Plan B, including the partition of Syria to be achieved by renewed supplies of arms to rebels, is forthcoming if the ceasefire does not hold. At the same time, the US does all it can to undermine the ceasefire, and justify its meddling with words contrived narratives and well-practiced bellicosity.

Though the CIA is the main operational front of US terrorist support, the Pentagon is the less competent face of “train-and-equip” programs, and its top brass the brassiest voices of imperial delusions. General Breedlove, soon thankfully to be relieved of his command of US NATO forces in Europe, continues his usual brand of paranoiac and apocalyptic threats. The Department of Defense has enwrapped the globe with its military and therefore Breedlove follows protocol in calling offense defense and deterrence aggression.Calling the build-up of US and NATO forces in Europe along the Russian border a transition from “assurance to deterrence”, Breedlove remains among the most histrionic of the “Russians are coming” delusional factions of the over-armed US military elite.

Even though it is an ocean and a continent away from the US, Russia also constituted an “existential threat” for the US during last year’s confirmation hearing for a seemingly more reasonable General Dunford, Obama’s new Chairman of the Joint Chiefs.

While the call for fresh US troops and arms for “moderate rebels” can be heard across the spectrum of US officialdom and the military brass, the US simultaneously has been trying to take credit for the decimation of ISIS by Russian, Iranian, and SAA forces. General Dunford testified before Congress that “better intelligence” is the reason for “our” great recent successes. This testimony came before Warhog-in-Chief John McCain’s Senate Armed Services Committee, the principle above-the-board appropriations platform for terrorist funding through the Pentagon. (Vastly larger resources are channeled, more covertly, through the CIA, as my posts at the end of last year reported.)

In less vituperative environments, Dunford has followed his “cautious” predecessor General Martin Dempsey, in urging restraint with US overseas adventures, at least when they involve US “boots on the ground”, the favorite de-humanizing characterization of our day. (As in “lost a couple more boots today”) He has also acknowledged the serious limitations of the present command structure, the implicit mea culpa needed to explain the poor showing of the US and its 62-country coalition in Syria, in respect to the efficient campaign carried out with minimal concrete intervention by the Russians.

Of course, the official narrative still assumes we are actually fighting ISIS, not supplying and supporting them. The US’ true feelings are expressed more in its reluctance to congratulate Syria and Russia on the re-capture of Palmyra.

These two-faced charades hide a duplicitous US power elite — or perhaps, an internally divided and violently feuding one. Certainly, the participants of a crumbling alliance of NATO members, Israel, and the West’s Sunni Gulf puppets, are also jockeying and bickering. Many indications suggest the US is ready to hang the Saudis out to dry, if the pseudo-serious 60 Minutes is now broaching the subject of the infamous 28 pages redacted on the Senate 9/11 report, then changes may be afoot. (These pages will tell us very little we do not already know, however they will bring Prince Bandar “Bush” and Prince Turki and the whole sordid issue back into public awareness.)

The US press also condemns a few of the most egregious of Turkish Boss of Bosses Erdogan’s abuses; the Russian information onslaught, showing the family’s trade in terror is a potato too hot for the US to handle. Thereby Ankara now is shaking hands with Israel, its truest friend in the region (As far as Erdogan personally was concerned, his association with the Gaza relief vessel Mavi Marmara was for show. IMHO, he has always been a man of Zion, probably a dönme).

The cease-fire, the partial Russian withdrawal, the Western failure to completely command the Geneva talks, were but the latest shocks to set the US and its allies back on their heels, exposing an ever greater gap between word and deed in each of them, and an gap in sovereign interests between them.

After the issue was raised by Donald Trump in his blasts against the Bush family, 9/11 has tentatively re-emerged as a domestic campaign meme, and in recent days, has quickly re-cast US relations with the House of Sa’ud. After the US threatened to expose Saudi Arabia’s (actually minor) role in 9/11, the Warrior Prince Muhammad bin Salman (Escobar’s title) has said he would start dumping US Treasuries the day after. King Salman, of course, smiles on with a senile gaze.

Economic ‘Blowback’ (Or was that also planned?)

Odd coincidence that. This may play into a larger set of chaotic strategizations underway across a globe already well into WW3. Tomorrow, on Tuesday April 19 China is going to open the new Shanghai Gold Fix, which will provide an alternative to the obviously corrupt Western based systems. These have kept the price of gold artificially low in respect to the reserve currency, the US paper petro-dollar. This is a fiat currency made increasingly worthless with QE, but since it is reserve currency of the world’s single hyperpower, it remains irrationally ‘strong’ in the currency markets. Since their debt is in dollars, the airy-fairy dollar rise over the last years is increasingly debilitating for many countries, especially the emerging market economies associated with BRICS whose revenues are dependent on commodity prices, now falling precipitously.

As tensions are really ramping up in the South China Sea and around the world, a few speculate that the Chinese may not stop with the gold fix, but may that very day also announce a new gold-backed yuan, aiming to replace the US dollar and ultimately collapse it. While the US public is taught to regard precious metals as “so 19th century”, many elites — and sovereign funds — are desperately accumulating them. This week too, already-troubled and junk-derivative dependent Deutsche Bank admitted guilt in the manipulation of  silver markets, and then a few hours later, of gold markets. DB swore it would identify other culprits. It will be hard to find big banks who weren’t involved, I imagine. Central banks are also implicated. Ben Bernanke’s former advisor said recently the US public would be stunned to know to what degree the Federal Reserve is privately owned. Most of the creme de la creme of US banks have recently failed their “living will” exams. The Fed has sent a “frightening” letter to JP Morgan (stocking up on precious metals), but this went unreported in the US press.

According to unofficial reports but a good deal of evidence, the Chinese have accumulated 20-30,000 tons of gold while our 8000+ likely has been stolen. (That’s why we don’t ‘audit the Fed’.) China certainly has vastly more than the 3000+ tons officially announced since they mine 500/year. If the Chinese do eventually present the world with a gold-backed yuan, declaring open war far beyond the present currency wars, then one would assume they too would start dumping US Treasury bonds, like the Sa’ud are threatening to do if we release the 9/11 report on them. Death of the dollar would be days away.

Now this full combo of actions would be an economic nuclear strike, as it were, so I don’t think its likely, but the new gold fix by itself is big news, a major blow to the imperial corporate state run out of banking houses in the US and Europe. Hopefully its effects, which will surely see sharp rises in gold and a falling of faith in the phoney-money of the fiat dollar system, will be muted. The petrodollar was backed only by US military might, but the prodigal and magical age of QE and ZIRP revealed to me and many others its inherently worthless character, just like that of the gangbankster scum who have run this country unopposed since the creation of the Federal Reserve in 1913. The death of the dollar will be the curtain call of the US Empire, whether that occur this week, this year, or this decade. Hopefully it won’t play out too chaotically and too violently, and hopefully a quick awakening to the historical causes will lead to quick action towards resolution. Nevertheless, it is amazing we are so far into WW3 and most of America has not yet woken up to the fact.

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Putin Withdraws / Obama Retreats / Rats Abandon Ship

Russia’s initial withdrawal from Syria was announced about the same time Obama’s voluminous ‘interview for the ages’ was published in The Atlantic. Both are meant, in part, to control a narrative concerning the approaching end-game in Syria. Obama seems intent upon deflecting blame for the sorry showing of the US and its ambivalently “anti-ISIS” allies. Especially he wants to divert blame for the propagation of terrorism and failed states during his Presidency away from his Presidency. With enthusiasm and aplomb, and over the skeptical views of his interviewer Jeffrey Goldberg, Obama thrusts the blame back onto a motley group of war-mongers who, truth be told, historically have spearheaded these activities — neo-cons, liberal interventionists, DC ‘think-tank land’ stooges, and Turkish, Saudi, and Israeli lobbying interests. These are indeed the people that have dominated US foreign policy in the 21st century, or more precisely since the PNAC group got their wished-for “new Pearl Harbor” with 9/11 precisely a year after summoning it up as an inviting prospect.

Obama may be well advised to take distance from the record of his 8 years in office. To be sure, his precise role in all this remains ambiguous. The Nobel Peace Laureate has destroyed more countries than the Bushes after entering the White House on a peace platform. But we would be naive to think the Bushes, Clintons and other DC Houses have left Obama much prerogative after the corporate lobbies and especially AIPAC have exercised theirs. As Obama has always been more a power-broker than a power-holder, so shirking responsibility is perhaps an easier task for him than for the CEOs of earlier US regimes.

The Atlantic interview seems most intent to counter Seymour Hersh’s recent “Military to Military”, where Obama takes a beating. Hersh’s high-ranking but anonymous Pentagon source lumps Obama in with the crowd he condemns in the Atlantic interview. Reflecting the slant of his source, Hersh tries to defend the good sense of General Martin Dempsey and the Joint Chiefs, along with Gen. Flynn and the DIA, while fingering the president and the CIA for facilitating Middle Eastern chaos through Turkey and Saudi Arabia. This continues a campaign of damning reports, including “The Red Line and The Rat Line” by Hersh, which eviscerate the illegal and ill-advised tunnelling of Ghedaffi’s weaponry to unvetted fighters willing to sign on to the CIA’s plan to destroy Syria. These articles are particularly damaging for Hillary Clinton, but accuse Obama too of facilitating the rise of mercenary and takfiri terrorism throughout the Middle East. If we look back at Hersh’s 2007 “The Re-direction”, we see how little, in fact, changes in direction from Republican to Democrat administrations.

Now that Putin’s bombing campaigns in Syria, and an ever more assertive Baghdad, have exposed the close ties between the US, its allies, and ISIS, the rats are abandoning ship. Pointing fingers at each other as they go, the Western-led faux jihadist alliances unravel, revealing much about the intricacies of this Gordion knot of collusive, corporate-industrial violence.

As Obama fingers Clinton and Kerry for inadvisable support for unvetted militants, Rudy Giuliani, himself deeply implicated in 9/11, says Clinton should be considered “a founding member of ISIS”, not because she funneled arms there from Libya, but because she refused to back US troops on the ground. Meanwhile, out in Syria, Pentagon-backed ‘rebels,’ mostly Kurds, now clash with CIA-backed mercenaries and takfiri terrorists. Paraphrasing Donovan “The United States ain’t really united.” In a later article I will break down the various factions, both domestic and foreign, that these new events bring to light. Today, I will concentrate on Obama, a few close figures, and only the most important institutional actors.

What is the catalyst for this mass of mutual accusations and allegations, the legacy-salvaging, the finger-pointing and gun-pointing on the part of US Imperial officialdom and proxydom alike? The answer is obvious: Russia’s revealing success in Syria.

Putin’s “withdrawal” is but a strategic stepping-down, and only many more steps would constitute true withdrawal. Mainly he has replaced his big fighter-bombers with smaller ones, more apt for the terrain and enemies that now confront them. Its main effect is so far largely ‘for show’. But it ‘shows’ Putin keeping the word he gave going in. It also ‘shows up’ the US propaganda campaigns, that he was not serious about going after ISIS, or that he was bent on a permanent expansion of a neo-Soviet empire.

Mainly, Putin’s smug “mission almost accomplished” announcement ‘shows up’ the US  “anti-ISIS”military campaigns as farcical theatre. In a short period of time, Russian airstrikes against ISIS actually laid waste to their operations. As one commentator remarked, it took the West so much by surprise because Putin actually did what he said he would. There is basically no precedent for this in the West. The start of a withdrawal at this point corresponds closely to the stated objectives of the Russian campaign in Syria, given in the political terms of sovereignty and international law at his UN speech, and in strategic terms at the start of the airstrikes.

Obama has necessarily changed his tune since the UN General Assembly speeches, which came days before the Russians initiated their bombing runs. This too took the West completely by surprise, though days before, at the UN, Putin had given a complete set of his rationales and parameters for action against terrorism, their need for immediate application in Syria, and indeed practically the date and time for the intervention.

At the UN, Obama mouthed a very different philosophy, indistinguishable from the interventionism he now criticizes. The present caution of an elder statesman represents a return to the non-interventionist platform with which Obama’s career began. Unfortunately intervening are 8 years in which war parties have clearly had the upper hand in his administration. To be sure, Obama pushed through the Iran deal, and has taken righteous verbal issue with the worst abuses of the Houses of Sa’ud and Likud, but the bright points are few, and the trail of destruction dark, smoking, and long.

Obama was first elected as a fresh face who had exhibited uncommon common sense by opposing the Iraq War. But once he was President and Nobel Peace Laureate, Obama has steadily called for surges and invasions. He is now the world’s undisputed champion of drone assassinations and arms-trading, and it will take future Presidents a long time to match his record of collateral massacres of Pakistani marriage and funeral parties.

Obama is hardly the only Democrat to march in lock-step with the neo-conservatives, whatever they profess on the campaign trail. In the early days of the 2008 campaign “liberal interventionist” erstwhile candidate, ex-General, state-secret-sharing David Petraeus told the world, in mock horror, about the neo-con “policy coup” following 9/11 and its plan to take down “7 countries in 5 years”. If Obama has followed the basic lines of the overly optimistic brain-child of Cheney and Rumsfeld, Wolfowitz and Perle, so too Wesley Clark would have fulfilled their same demands had he been elected Commander in Chief. Last August, ex-General Clark, fresh from being mildly chastised for sharing top secret security leaks to his biographer/girlfriend, recommended the US formally ally with al-Qaeda to oppose Assad.

Nevertheless, with some good reason, Obama, along with his recently-retired Joint Chiefs Chairman General Martin Dempsey, long have been considered the ‘cautious’ members of a generally war-mongering administration dominated by the fetishists of “credibility” who pushed on Obama the idea of the “red line”, and then conspired to push him over it. However, though Obama has now further upped the volume of differences between his more cautious policies and those of the interventionists, including Kerry, still the contrasts are flexible and relative. Of course, this is the US. Rarely does actual policy correspond even in broad terms with stated intentions.

We should remember that Obama’s main difference with the neo-cons was how to take down Assad and Syria (and control Pipelinestan). They concurred completely in setting aside international law and all respect for national sovereignty, and cooperatively doctored a picture of Syria and Assad that would fit their recipe for takeover. Obama (and Wesley Clark) preferred to do national destruction and asset-stripping with proxies, run mainly through the CIA, (and their specialties — finance, trade, and privatization “agreements”) while Pentagon hardliners, spokesfolk for the military-industrial complex like McCain, and the Israel-first neo-cons wanted US “boots” on the ground (bodies rather).

Nothing conveys more eloquently the tight corner into which contradictory US rhetoric and action has painted itself than the overt squirming, and hemming and hawing, exhibited by Mark Toner, US State Department’s endlessly befuddled spokesguy, when asked if they’d prefer the SAA or ISIS to be holding Palmyra.

While “7 countries in 5 years” proved to be beyond their wild dreams, and several strategic variations were then tabled, it is clear Syria was meant to follow the same trajectory as Afghanistan, Somalia, Sudan, Iraq and Libya before Putin got involved. (Iran is last on the list.) Now, times have changed, the imperial farce has been exposed, and Obama wants out. As I will discuss further in a later article, so do many others of the ISIS-support crowd want out, both domestic and foreign. Only the most centrally-involved, like Clinton, McCain, and the CIA, refuse to acknowledge the end-game approaching and do not seem even to contemplate that option. Others, like Kerry, playing both sides so far, have yet to make a choice.

Struck Down by Putin On the Road to Damascus: Will Obama Regain His Sight?

In his interview Jeffrey Goldberg and Obama agree he had tried to resolve international tensions and then extricate himself from the Middle East several times during his Presidency, but each time, like the Mafia to Michael Corleone, its intransigent hold pulled him back in. He may as well have been talking about the “DC think tank establishment” he loves to hate and which in this article is reflected in the foil of Jeffrey Goldberg. (Now there’s a sentiment I share with Obama). Of course, ThinkTankistan is a varied land — there are many varieties of chickenhawk — but it is plain that Obama is speaking realistically of the pseudo-intellectual hold of the PNAC expansionist crowd in DC, the military-industrial corporate complex, the neo-cons, the Zionists, the Saudi oiligarchs, and US liberal interventionists all propounding blind religious faiths of ‘civilizational superiority’ while operating like, well, Mafiosi.

Obama would like to wash his hands of this crowd, I am sure, but in the interview, he and Goldberg agree he would like to wash his hands of the Middle East. He maintains that his high hopes for the Arab Spring were dashed by misguided rebel extremism, but it is entirely unclear whether or not he knows — he certainly never acknowledges — the full US role in radicalizing the rebellion then arming its worst elements.

As the ceasefire continues to half-hold, Putin’s pronouncement of ‘mission accomplishment’, looks to be a bit more realistic than that of W way back when we were still in year 1 of the Iraq War. But it also shows up Obama’s hand-wringing and hand-washing. The war is far from over, but Russia has turned the tide in Syria, and made transparent that the Western “anti-ISIS” alliance was anything but.

The 62 nation US-led “ambivalent alliance,” at work for a year and a half, in reality presided over the incessant expansion of ISIS to the Syrian east and al-Qaeda to the west (the CIA’s ugly twins, the CIAliphate and al-CIAduh). In six months a fairly small force of Russian aircraft managed to crush the terrorists while Russian intelligence exposed their financing and oil transfers, or rather the Turkish tip of it after the Turks illegally shot down a Russian fighter jet in Syria. The intel onslaught on Turkey continues; RT has released clips of a very damning documentary that is on the way.

That the tide has turned is suggested by events that have since transpired. This week, Palmyra, wrecked by ISIS occupation, has mostly be re-taken by the Syrian Arab Army (SAA). Barring unexpected setbacks, say, from a fresh contingent of ISIS recruits or covert US forces, the SAA, along with the remaining Hezbollah, Iranian al-Quds fighters, and the permanent Russian presence in Syria, should be able to complete the clearing of the main cities, Deir Ezzor, Aleppo, and Damascus suburbs within months. A similar positive prognosis holds for the prospects of the Iraqi Army at Mosul.

The importance of this changing tide can hardly be overstressed. If Westerners and their Middle Eastern allies had eliminated an autonomous Syria, they would have sealed a nearly complete encircling of a conjoined Russian and Iranian field of interests. This would have had powerful geo-political and economic consequences, especially for the energy industry, and left only China (with its important African power points) outside the reach of the cartel of Western corporate-empire domination.

Most concretely, Western control of Syria would have stymied access for Iranian gas to the Mediterranean. This, evidently, is why the neo-cons permitted Obama to sign an agreement with Iran. Iran was back-burnered, as Obama’s remarks in the Atlantic interview confirm. The US expects no change in the evil Iranian regime, Obama makes plain. Therefore, neither should we expect the US to entertain different long-term strategies, though tactics may have changed. Iranian containment, the Empire decided, would be applied elsewhere.

Even though Iranian energy production was relieved by the removal of sanctions, the Western strategists felt that they could still confine Iranian gas production to relative insignificance, by blocking it up in the Persian Gulf, by cutting off direct pipeline access to the Mediterranean and Europe, and by developing instead a pipeline, perhaps under Turkish control, from the Qatari gas fields, controlled by the House of al-Thani, number two puppet of Western oil and banking interests among the fake shaykhdoms of the Arab Gulf states. This was the prospect dangled by the US corporate-empire before Erdogan’s eyes, an illusion for which he gave up the much better offer of the Russian Gazprom Turkstream due to considerations more political than economic, more to the benefit of the corporate-empire than the Turkish people.

The effectiveness of the Russian campaigns have made obvious that the US-led “anti-ISIS” coalition was performing the opposite role of its stated intention, and rather acted in a concerted effort to support the takfiri terrorists in order to remove Assad and the Ba’ath regime in the interests of wider geo-political control, the “New World Order”, as GHW Bush conceived it on September 11, 1990 and Putin condemned at Valdai in 2014.

This, in short, is the newly-changed landscape in Syria, the ‘facts on the ground’ from which Obama is retreating and Putin withdrawing. It is a matter of time before reality shatters further the thin ‘post-reality’ facade erected by US official and media narratives concerning its Outrémere Empire. Obama is taking care not to be cut by the flying shards.

Still, it is true, US imperialists (exemplified in Kerry’s Plan B) continue to scheme, believing a battle has been lost, not the war, but ‘reality’ suggests otherwise. Syria was the crucial battle of WW3: it was Stalingrad, the Battle of the Bulge, Trafalgar, Waterloo, what have you.

Rather than keep the pressure on, the Russians now pull back. They understand dynamics: as the pendulum turns, as the swing gains its own momentum, you let go. This allows the US and its allies to save face, somewhat. It allows them to pick up the initiative and live true, for once, to their anti-terrorist rhetoric. Perhaps they will, or some of them will. They already abandoned al-Nusra in Geneva. Obama is bowing out of the support game, at least he says he is, and so are others (including King Abdullah of Jordan.)

Obama is aware the media blackout cannot last forever. It soon may dawn on long-unwary Western observers that the US military is not just singularly ineffective in its wars against terrorism, but that something far more nefarious is at work. As Brussels exemplifies, blowback is part of the same plan that uses your tax dollars to put TOW missiles in the hands of terrorists.

The Saker is among the most illuminating writers on this latest move, as on many others. He has an entirely convincing “politics first” take on Putin’s strategy, which is probably entirely beyond the scope of many military minds to understand. The Saker writes:

” instead of defeating Daesh first and then attempting to reform Syria by means of a political dialog, the Russians might be trying to reverse that sequence by first reforming Syria by means of a political dialog and only then helping a “reformatted” and united Syria to truly defeat Daesh.”

This, I believe, is the best interpretation of Putin’s move. As Saker many times has pointed out, the Russian force operating out of Syria was never very large. The weaponry and aircraft, however, were top of the line, far superior to US boondoggles that result from the cartel oligopolization of even the military industry in the US. Most importantly, the Russian campaigns were justified by wide appeal to international law and they were very intelligently strategized in the field along with the SAA, the Iranian al-Quds Force, and Hezbollah. Israel is gnashing its teeth at Hezbollah’s movements in Syria, and may be planning renewed hostilities in Lebanon, but seems to have been pacified or emasculated since Netanyahu’s visit to Moscow just before the Russian campaigns began. Now that the US President is throwing in the towel on this war, the Geneva talks may indeed harbor some hopeful prospects.

In my next posts, I hope to continue an analysis of Obama’s The Atlantic interview, and consider further the factionalization of his administration in the wake of the global tidal shift in Syria.

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An “Economic Hit Man” Returns

John Perkins has released an enlarged and updated edition of his classic, The New Confessions of an Economic Hitman. Here he is interviewed by Chris Martenson, an excellent economic analyst at PeakProsperity.com.

Perkins’ original work, which came out 12 years ago, is on my still sparse and incomplete Great Books Page. This lists a series of monographs that lay out the broad contours of my present-day world view and “corporate-state” interpretation of US history in the 20th and 21st centuries.

Actually, I think I may now make use of Perkins’ term, the US “corporate-empire”. This reflects its geo-strategic interests as much as its legal and ideological constitution. Of course, its really just a gang of crooks running a classical patrimonial system of despotic and asset-stripping rulership. It is only “rule of law” by virtue of the fact that US legislation is almost entirely written by international and corporate lobbyists.

The  US itself is indeed a corporation. “USA, Inc.” another favorite moniker of mine, has been a fact since 1871. Subsequently, all its ‘agencies’ followed suit. Of course, that goes too for the Halls of Mordor themselves, the Federal Reserve, “as federal as Federal Express”. We have left our monetary policy not in the incompetent hands of Janet Yellen, but in those of the private, international banks whose shareholders’ interests she serves. It should be no surprise “dealer always wins”, yet the US public remains astonished. Chalk it up to the US media, whose opaqueness in this matter suggests that another word than “media” be better used.

Perkins’ great exposé shows, from a whistle-blowing insider’s experience, the imperial strategy of indebtedness and asset-stripping at work in the modern age. Historically, it is but the neo-liberal updating of a strategy used by 19th century English and French ‘corporate-banking-industry-state’ complexes. Such nefarious collusion crippled and then collapsed the Ottoman empire, asset-stripping its population long before military conquest was even required to get the tough stuff. India suffered perhaps even more. And of course, these were the same European ‘progressives’ and English Whigs that engineered the Opium Wars.

The US itself had to be ‘captured’ before it could be made the center — the military-industrial center — of the then-mostly-European cartel and cabal of economic interests. Their bent for unprecedented global domination depended on the  human, natural, and industrial resources of England’s wayward colonies. The way to Restoration was laid by a creeping process of government ‘incorporation’ following the bankruptcies of the Civil War, but was perhaps sealed in 1913, with the creation of the US Central Bank, beholden to the usual crew of European banking families, now joined by John D. Rockefeller, JP Morgan and other stateside ‘entrepreneurs’.

The US Central Bank was titled the Federal Reserve, since in 1913 there were still many around who remembered Presidents Jefferson’s and Jackson’s warnings about (and wars upon) privately-owned central banks. (Jefferson advocated for a publically-owned central bank; I believe Jackson thought a central bank is inevitably a ‘den of thieves’.)

This was the same crowd, joined by the nefarious NY law firm Sullivan and Cromwell’s Harriman brothers and Prescott Bush, that fomented the 1933 “Business Plot” to overthrow FDR and replace him with a fascist government. They chose the wrong general, Marine General Smedley Butler, to lead the plot. He went along for a while, gathering information. Typically, his shocking revelations before Congress resulted in the punishment only of minor officials. Butler went on to write War is a Racket, (1935) another classic, also on my Great Books list.

After WW2, Prescott Bush and Allen Dulles, Nazi bankers and sympathizers, presided over the Nazification of the US. (Please see Salon founder David Talbott’s recent book on Dulles, also on my Great Books page.) This was effected mainly through Dulles’ agency, the CIA, and especially Dulles’ “Secret Team”, which had clandestine operatives in the White House, the State Department, War/Defense, and everywhere else. Of course, bringing droves of Nazis into the US via Operation Paperclip also helped. According to Joseph Farrell these amounted to 70,000.

Of course, JFK threatened to “smash the CIA into a thousand pieces” but we saw how that turned out. George H.W. Bush, CIA agent at the time, is one of the few people in the world who does not remember where he was on that day in 1963. In fact he was in Dealey Plaza, in Dallas, as photos show. (I was in a first-grade classroom. I remember staring at the P.A. address box in shocked disbelief and a deepening sense of irreality as the news was broadcast.)

The Opium wars, run as much out of the Bank of England and the City of London as out of Parliament or Buckingham Palace, have not ended but have spread. That is why we occupied Afghanistan. The CIA, run by Bush after Dulles’ death (both ran the agency even in “retirement”) is at the heart of this operation too. More famously, if forgotten, Iran Contra was funded by cocaine trafficking in the US. Abundant evidence shows that too was run also by the Poppy Bush, though Ollie North never pointed that far up. You wonder where the drugs came in? That would be Mena, Arkansas, where a young womanizer had just been elected Guv. And yes, he did know. And got rich in the process.

International shareholders in the “corporate empire” happily deal drugs for profit and domestic social decimation at home. They do to their “own” nations, what they did to China; it is only the ‘next step’. The ‘chickens’ were meant to come home to roost, as their asset-stripping strategies turned from foreign plantation-slaves to the house-slaves “back home.”

Here, below, is the Perkins interview. This repentant “economic hit man” sadly feels we are much worse off now than 12 years ago when he first wrote the book. Thus the need for an update:

http://www.peakprosperity.com/podcast/97200/john-perkins-shadow-world-economic-hitman

 

 

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An economic aside

As my ‘day-job’ occupies more time, I must continue to post only short comments on youtube clips, interviews, and ‘shows’. Here is the March 1 edition of Boom/Bust, one of several Russia Today (RT) offerings I never miss. They are what mainstream media ‘ought to be’, if by mainstream media we mean ‘nothing too shocking’ but more or less approximately truthful. (When your foe is the US imperial-corporation, it is easy to be ‘on the right side’). Peter LaVelle’s “Crosstalk” and “The Keiser Report” with Max Keiser and Stacy Herbert are the others. “Crosstalk”, with PressTV’s “The Debate”, is among my favorite ‘debate’ shows, while Boom/Bust and The Keiser Report are my regulars for business, finance, and economics news.

I’ve posted several particularly hilarious and informative episodes with Max and Stacy, but this is the first time I’ll link to Boom/Bust. Its several hosts are excellent: Ameera David, Erin Ade, Bianca Facchinei, and the often brilliant Ed Harrison. While Max Keiser never pulled punches and his show focuses on scandals, crony capitalism, and the biggest shams of the Federal Reserve system, Boom/Bust’s (inevitably American) reporters have long toed a line of reporting that differed from US mainstream reporting only in its greater depth. While this inevitably brings ‘unpleasant realities’ to light, Boom/Bust moved quickly on to the next story. It long has hosted US commentators that make appearances in the US mainstream, but many of these have been sidelined because their predictions of the disasters of 2008 turned out to be correct, and their continued complaints about the “financial coup d’etat” (C.A.Fitts) that followed without changing anything substantial in the crooked system, have made their Fox News and MSNBC hosts uncomfortable.

While their outrage never approaches the Shakespearean heights of Max Keiser, these guests-experts level substantial broadsides against the rigged US petro-dollar dominance of the world economy and the racketeering dominance of the banksters über alles, and consider debt approaching numbers we don’t have names for something to actually be concerned about. Among the voices often heard on Boom Bust are Gerald Celente, Peter Schiff, Jim Rogers, Paul Craig Roberts, Steve Keen, Danielle DiMartino Booth, and, as in this episode, Jim Rickards. This episode, with a second-half discussion concerning gold and the ‘currency wars’ already underway, approaches the “outer limits” of mainstream media conversation.

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Eva Bartlett: “I’m Back From Syria; the Media is Lying”

 

Canadian journalist Eva Bartlett appeared on the Richie Allen Show. Her report, following extended stays in Syria, will not surprise my readers in its general assessments of the ongoing war and accusations leveled at the US Gov and mass media, but Bartlett’s long experience and impassioned, precise delivery makes for an unforgettable half hour.

 

 

 

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Interview with Maria Zakharova, Russian Foreign Ministry, on RT

This is an important RT interview with Maria Zakharova, the Russian Foreign Ministry’s eloquent spokesperson. She appears with Anissa Naouai on In The Now.

The content of Putin’s speeches at Valdai and the UN were utterly ignored by the Western press. So was the recent “No More Business As Usual” press conference of Lavrov. Of course, the Western press has sucked up and transmitted badly-faked propaganda reports from such one-man disinformation outfits as the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, all the while ignoring the droves of evidence about the real war going on in Syria that was offered up at several large-scale press conferences of the Russian military and in the steady stream of information at RT, Sputnik, Pravda, Tass, and other less government-overseen operations.

None of these sober official statements got through the opaque Western “media” outlets to the Western public, so the Kremlin has turned to its own mass-media outlet, Russia Today, to disseminate an official, or semi-official, Russian side of the story.

Here is the link to the interview:

https://www.rt.com/shows/in-the-now-summary/332766-zakharova-syria-media-propaganda/

Unfortunately, the US public is now so habituated to empty assertions without credible evidence from its own USGov that it is now entirely unaware that in other parts of the world, governments make strong evidence-based cases for their positions. Zacharova does not offer anything new, but makes plain that the US, not Russia, has employed a strategy of aggression in the Middle East and along the old Soviet borders. Russia is in Syria at behest of a now exceedingly popular leader representing a sovereign government and in accordance with international law. She comes close to saying that ISIS is in fact a US creation, closer than any Russian official since they started inching in that direction at Putin’s 2014 Valdai speech and discussion. But again, the US should heed what Russia has done to Turkey in recent months, through the simple dissemination of information it is sitting upon.

I am not sure who to credit with this brilliant graphic:

usa_corp_vs_world_military_bases copy.jpg

Here is another recent RT interview with Zakharova, less formal, but in English. (The link above is dubbed over in English)

 

 

 

 

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The Suspicious Death of an “Originalist”

I will weigh in only briefly on the death of Justice Scalia, if mainly to introduce and comment on this RealNews interview with retired Lt. Col Lawrence Wilkerson, former Chief of Staff for Sect’y of State Colin Powell. Wilkerson, a regular on Real News, an excellent alternative news source out of Baltimore, is presently an adjunct professor at William and Mary, and one of the few high ranking military officers principled enough to not sell out to six-figure consultant jobs in the military-industrial complex.

The US military-industrial complex, incidentally, also must be considered ‘international’ in the scope of its vested corporate interests, to the extent it depends on steady and growing international sales and long-term strategies of US military global encirclement, already almost total, when the eastern alliances, in various permutations, began their full-on resistance in the last few years. I greatly respect Wilkerson for his willingness to take on sacred cows of the GOP and the “military-industrial-congressional” complex, as he calls it (echoing Ike’s original written words) as well as his informed commentary on the wayward paths of US foreign policy in the 21st century.

If the DOD’s budget is that of the next 7 or 8 powers combined (many of these are but abject puppet-‘allies’) then its high proportion of foreign sales suggests that even this most nation-oriented and justified of ‘federal’ activities is not so ‘nation-oriented’ in practice. Ponder the  F-35 corporate boondoggle and death-trap. In USGov Departmental lingo, “Defense”, equals “Offense” in reality, and its preeminent duty, “protection of borders,” is neglected in defense of a corporate bottom line, which is more about ‘stimulating growth’ in an industry of death and destruction than ‘protecting’ anybody. We are, after all , the world’s greatest supplier of weapons to ISIS, Jubhat al-Nusra, Ahrar al-Sham, and the other takfiri terrorist groups our NATO and Middle Eastern allies orchestrate in Syria and Iraq under the tutelage of US neo-cons and their Zionist string pullers.

Before I get too far off topic, here is Wilkerson’s interview:

In contrast to Scalia’s ‘originalism’, Wilkerson urges a balance between principled constitutionalism and flexibility. I agree, and believe that this can only be maintained if we agree that humans are endowed with moral thinking, with conscience. (We do not have to be monotheists to do this; but it will be hard for “dumb materialists”, that is, for those who believe “consciousness” emerges accidentally out of dumb matter.)

We need to recognize that 99 times out of 100, we will agree on what is right or wrong when cognizant of all the facts and all sides of the story. However, the basics of power and the way US legislation is written and enacted are hidden systematically from the public. What little information filters down is divided into “left” and “right”. The memes of political, cultural, and religious division purveyed by the massmedia and USGov are historically inaccurate and socially nihilistic. This is not by accident nor by rational argument but by mendacious design.

Literalism, when based on a narrow historical or cultural understanding, invites clumsy mistakes when interpreting any text, but when it comes to a legal or constitutional text it invites social disaster because it mistakes words about right and wrong for what is right and wrong. It makes the mistake opposite that of left-wing diatribists, who believe their own political correctness, which is often simple-minded and atheistic in ‘rationalization’ (no rational thinking needed) constitutes something like a direct ‘voice to God’. This allows them to dismiss all who appeal to our country’s founding documents as ideas superseded by the enlightened liberal consciousness of the 21st century. Both sides are hoodwinked, used, and abused, by those who control the categories and the dissemination of information and disinformation among “left” and “right”.

I saw Ammon Bundy react angrily only once, when a reporter accused him of “breaking the law”. I am not breaking the law, he replied, maybe “codes and regulations”. Rather, he said, I am trying to enforce the law. The distinction is crucial. The first is founded in Nature, in “natural law”, in our organic, human constitution, reflected in the consistent recommendations of “common law” systems around the world and throughout history. As elucidated in the work of former Alaska Superior Court, now Common Law, Judge Anna von Reitzinger, we now labor under a hijacked Constitution, subservient to the corporate principles of “maritime” or Admiralty law, that has been gradually re-cast to serve the interests of the corporate-state. This is not a system that can be fixed by ‘tweaking’. How can one assert “originalism” when working within a corporate-state set of principles? We will need to return to truly original constitutional principles, not their ‘re-written by the victors’ versions. But we will also have to access our common humanity, and our common human conscience, if we want to set things aright.

In fact, 95% of “shari’a” whose mere mention makes many “constitutionalists” shit in their pants, is coherent with most “common law” and “natural law” systems found worldwide. Unlike Catholicism, Islam understood the corruption in “institutionalized religion” and banned it. That is why there is no “Mosque” to pronounce against the takfiri and un-Islamic terrorism of al-CIAduh and the CIAliphate. That is why a fatwa is merely a legal opinion (despite the unlettered pretensions of al-CIAduh’s Osama bin Laden) not a judgment of God. Alone of Western monotheisms (considered globally that is the proper category) Islam did not sell out to the banksters, and never gave up its righteous injuctions against usury. This kept that society sane, relative to the West, for 1000 years. The Catholic Church sold itself out before God in the 1300s (before it became ‘the Vatican’). At the same time, with Boniface VII’s Unum sanctum, it declared itself the owner of the world with rights to distribute it as it saw fit.

Like Wilkerson, I think Scalia’s “originalism” was dead-letter Constitutional literalism, ‘several steps beyond conservatism’. He was not a stupid man, like others on the court, but nevertheless he served the most corrupt interests, whether knowingly or unknowingly, I am not certain. He may have died at their hand. However, he is no martyr; I will not name him in the same breath as the truer martyr assassinated in Oregon.

Depending on which ‘constitution’ you want to follow, the interpretive gap to span for a contemporary jurist became wider as society first industrialized, then post-industrialized, that is to say ‘financialized.’ Even if we say, for the sake of argument, that he had ‘good intentions’, nevertheless, Scalia was used by the corporate-state. They took hold of his “misplaced concreteness”,  his simple-minded literalism, because, most crucially, it was not truly “conscience-driven”, it was text-driven literalism, and, because, well, you just don’t do “conscience” when you exercise “justice” in our society. How naive of me to propose we try to understand what conscience means.

But perhaps Scalia was naiver yet. While I will not guess at Scalia’s “original intent”, it is easy to see the leverage by which his clever, but not very smart, literalism was used by the powers-that-never-should-have-been.

Scalia erected an interpretive self-image that was detached from the real world. His facade of overly concrete rationalist originalism hid the world from his own eyes, and erased much complicated history intervening between the vaunted “origin-times” and the present. This historical erasure was double in nature, it concerned a society which grew increasingly complex — and increasingly corrupt. It was strikingly naive on the first account, damnably on the second.

Scalia’s theory and his epistemological naivete underpinned a profound disconnect. This lurked between the Divine Mysteries that allowed him to penetrate ‘Original Intent’ of our pre-industrial forefathers, and the realities of the society taking shape around him. Possibly he did not understand how his own efforts contributed to the demise of the already mostly-moribund Republic. Scalia especially helped remove sensible federal restrictions to criminal corporate control of government by signing on to Citizen’s United and most egregiously stamped on decency and democracy alike by helping Bush steal the elections of 2000.

Scalia made odd appeals to Constitutional authority when his most important decisions  enabled history’s most vigorous “re-distribution” of wealth from the lower and middle classes to a tinier and tinier percentage of corporate international elites. It is particularly grating when these opinions were accompanied, as Wilkerson says, by an adamant hardheadness, an idiotic literalism of misplaced concreteness with gaping inconsistencies that refused to listen to real reason.

There is not a lot that separates the corporate-state private shenanigans of, say, the Clinton Foundation, and those enabled by Citizens United. Are we still pretending there is much difference between the criminal gangs on the left and those on the right? The best we could say about Scalia is that he was quite literally out of touch with the world, or in touch with another world, one entirely of his own fantasy, though replicating that 95% of the political and pundit class.

Nevertheless, I am disgusted to say that Scalia’s simple-minded and easily manipulated ‘originalism’ looks healthy and sane next to the gangland rule that the US populace– and the world — has been subjected to in the 21st century. However, it should be plain as day to all sane souls that nobody who makes it to the Supreme Court, hardly a single soul who makes it to Congress, is anything but deeply compromised.

The real leaders are not satisfied that their bait-and-switch left us admiralty, mercantile, corporate law of the sea running USA. Inc. and kept us “commoners” legally out of the loop. Nope, they are gangsters after all. Even though, from NAFTA to TPP and TTIP, the “rule of law” is written by international corporate lobbies, the real patriarchs of banking, commerce, and the “military-industrial-congressional” complex, still the corporate-state must engage in extra-judicial assassinations of foreign and domestic opposition, for any reason at all.

At the end of the clip, Wilkerson rails at Marco Rubio for suggesting Obama’s term in office ought to limit his capacity to appoint a Justice and waxes angry and righteous about Republican constitutionalist hypocrisy. This stinks to high heaven indeed, and seems engineered along the lines of the ‘divide-and-conquer-with-media-reversals-and-bald-face-lies” tactics we’ve seen so often.

But Wilkerson does not properly judge the outrage justifiably felt among those on the right who are aware that Scalia’s death also stinks to high heaven, and practically shouts assassination. Even at this early stage, this is evident for reasons that are obvious with even a passing glance at alternative media, so I won’t link anything here. Now, calling out Obama on a possible assassination attempt and cover-up would be a proper cry and righteous cause. But then the RNC is as invested in the system as the DNC, “conservatives” as much as “liberals.”

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Reality-Reversal Media Tactics of the Corporate-State: What Ties the American West to the Middle East (III)

Recognize the tactics? The US mass media — left and right alike — stand united behind US Gov land-grabs and asset-stripping in the American West, just as they refrain from questioning the same consistent policies in the Middle East. We might add eastern Europe to this equation, for the Big Picture is really about conquering Russia and coming to an ‘agreement’ with China. Much leftie media critical of US foreign policy still tends to regard our steady destruction of foreign states as ‘one mistake after another,’ refusing to recognize the geo-strategic patterns. Much right-wing media, conversant with US depredations of US citizenry, suck up the propaganda about its humanitarian crimes overseas without question, fearing who the US Gov insists it fears, and hating who it insists we hate.

The mass media, on both sides, vilify all who resist USInc, foreign or domestic, as extremist, either religious or political, and nowadays, as terrorists. The real world works the other way around. In the real world, the USGov and its cartel of corporations and corporate-governments around the West systematically use a wide variety of terror tactics against private citizens and other sovereign states. Why? They are extremists of zero-sum profit, adherents to a pure and simple ideology of evil. They use political ideology, left and right and so on, to lure and hypnotize the masses with mostly illusory ‘difference’. They adhere only to the corporate politics of a gangster cabal, rendering all our high-falutin’ political theory completely moot, and us, effectively, mute.

We’ve been watching how this works in Oregon. The mass media needs merely to flip reality. The FBI — and its quite possibly foreign mercenary agents — caught red-handed in ‘false flag’ provocations — have been hostile to the local population and have functioned like the military in the siege of Malheur and the execution of LaVoy Finicum. Lavoy had no weapon on him, and never hurt a soul. Now another 80 militia and occupants of the Refuge (what irony in that name — too wild wildlife?) have been arrested. These include Blaine Cooper, apprehended and carted off without a warrant in front of his wife and kids, who he recently had rejoined. (I will update shortly.) As I said in a previous post, Cooper is one who understands well what connects the American West to the Middle East. The Feds act not in ‘public’ interest but act (out) in support of a BLM which operates in turn in support of private foundations, and, as Judge Darby charged, possibly of the IMF.

The mass media label the ‘rich white ranchers’ selfish’, and the left often calls them ‘racist,’ though Finicum reached out to the Paiute as neighbors and partnered victims in a systematic constitutional rip-off. They say the Oregon occupiers bantered ‘land-rights rhetoric’ — all the while ignoring the horrific and unjust treatment accorded the Hammonds, the obvious corruption on county, state, and federal levels on that and related cases, and the well-understood constitutional principles upon which the land rights arguments are in fact constructed. They also count them extremists, even though the statements of the leaders, and Brandon Curtiss/PPN’s Articles of Resolution were presented as issues, talking points, and grievances to be taken up even though none had been redressed, or even addressed, in the proper forum of the civil courts.

It works the same for the USGov’s favorite ‘villains’ abroad: Putin, Assad, and Rouhani. The US needs merely to flip reality in order to deliver a “narrative” to the US mass media, and the public sucks it up. It most stinks where FoxNews and NYTimes agree – but most conspicuous are the large areas of reality they both ignore. The US has surrounded Russia with hundreds of bases under neo-con hegemony, yet calls them “aggressive”, editing and twisting words as effectively with Russian diplomats as with patriots.

As the following presentation by Russian Major General Igor Konashenkov suggests, USGov control of the US mass media allows pure and unsubstantiated assertion to push aside all evidence contradicting official Newspeak. As the Bush neo-con propagandists promised, we now live in a “post-factual reality”. However, as with false-flags, things have gotten sloppy in recent times. There is nothing subtle about their propaganda tactics anymore, they are just lies. I usually search for a grain of truth, but nope, not even that.

 

To summarize: yesterday, two US A-10s took off from a base in Turkey (probably Incirlik) and made bombing raids over Aleppo, where Russian-backed Syrian forces (Syrian Arab Army (SAA) and regional militia in support) have nearly liberated the ancient emporium city. Later, with no evidence, no photos, no names, no coordinates, no nothing, the US accused Russia of bombing two hospitals and several other civilian sites in the city. But the Russian campaigns were 20 km away from the city and only the US-led “anti-I.S.I.S.” (so-called) alliance was flying over Aleppo that day. The investigation continues, the Russian investigation that is, since the US mind was made up before they served the day as the I.S.I.S. Air Force.

This is par for the course, of course. Anyone following this blog must know many past precedents. Many of these can be found on my I.S.I.S. is US page (not recently updated). Two months ago, US jets destroyed Aleppo’s power station at the start of the SAA-Russian-Hezbollah campaigns for the terrorist held city a few months ago. This endangered a million people with cholera. Until the concerted campaigns to recapture Syria’s second city, Aleppo had been held in large part by Jubhat al-Nusra and other Western-backed takfiri terrorist groups, mostly controlled from Turkey. Here is an interview with Eva Bartlett, a Canadian journalist recently returned from Syria, with many such stories of US and UN media reality-reversals in that ravaged country.

The SAA and allies have now nearly closed off the Aleppo-to-Turkey corridor through Azaz. For this reason, Turkey, and its closest ally, Saudi Arabia, are banging the drums of war as loud as they possibly can. Both want Big Bro in there, but the USGov has now got cold feet. This, at least, is evinced by its ineffective and ambiguous stance in Geneva (we shall see how far this ceasefire goes – my guess is that US “humanitarian aid” will be arms-drops to I.S.I.S.) and perhaps most eloquently by Kerry’s protestation to an “activist”, “What do you want me to do? Go to war with Russia?” This recalls Kerry’s protestation to a neo-liberal imperial activist when the Iran deal was signed: “What do you want me to do? If we don’t sign, they will dump the petrodollar and take lots of countries with them.” That — all along — was Iran’s real “nuke”, if you ask me.

Following Turkey’s downing of a Russian jet, and its terrorist proxy’s cold-blooded murder of its crew member, Russia’s intel leaks have proven to the world that Erdogan is the Godfather of I.S.I.S. in Ankara. Putin has also begun blowing to smithereens their oil trade. Of course, he has been sitting on this information. Though all this was widely known in the alternative media, its leaks to the Russian mass media outfits, like RT and Sputnik, were significant because it meant the information’s rapid distribution around the world. Erdogan’s reputation is now sullied beyond repair, even among the occasional readers of YahooNews.

Erdogan knows the US umbrella is now not just leaky, but closing up. He has furiously attacked the US alliance with the Syrian Kurdish YPG. “You either side with the terrorists or you side with us!” Erdogan puffs out, channelling W. On the other hand, the US happily lets Erdogan pound his own Kurds into desolation, as my most recent post showed. The PKK, the old allies agree, is terrorist, though in fact, they little differ in their egalitarian anarcho-socialist ideology with the YPG. The PKK has carried out

We still do not know what if Erdogan or the House of Sa’ud (or Likud) will follow up on their hysterical threats to invade Syria, even in the absence of US or NATO support, since these are desperate times for those ruling classes. But Russia’s information ammunition, in my opinion, is why the US seems to be backing off from overly encouraging their barking dogs into a fight. Putin knows the owner. Russia could just as easily release information connecting the US Embassy in Ankara to Erdogan’s wheeling and dealing with terrorists, or intel about CIA training sites for terrorists in Jordan, or about BP’s and HSBC’s oil and finance connections…. well, you get the idea. The “laundering” list is long.

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Where the other (corporate-mercenary) jackboot lands…What Ties the American West to the Middle East (II)

As it emerges that the Feds in Oregon and the FBI likely have outsourced their dirty work to mercenaries — some have charged that these include foreign ‘agents’– we might recall that “hired soldiers” are those most used in the US Empire’s 21st century style of foreign land-grab too. Here as well “governments” are manipulated on several levels, national, regional, and fictive (I.S.I.S., that is, US) by the private international corporate interests that run the USGov and ‘govs’ stretching almost entirely around the world.

Lest we forget that the US-led corporate state’s jackboot crushes down in the Middle East much worse and for far longer than it has in the American West, I once again want to recall the present situation in Turkey and Syria, where “divide-and-conquer” is being used on a vast and violent scale.

Here is an article, with sad video footage of ongoing battles and destruction in the Sur district in Diyarbakir, the ‘capital,’ we may fairly say, of Turkish Kurdistan, and destroyed, we may fairly say, by the ‘left hand’ of US empire in the Middle East, Erdogan’s Turkey. (Saudi Arabia is the right hand, Israel the pituitary, of the US war machine.)

Since pretending to withdraw US armies from Iraq (and pretending not to have any in Syria), many US battles for global domination are fought more or less openly with proxy and private armies.

In Iraq, of course, the US relies on “McCain’s army”, otherwise known as I.S.I.S., but also on ‘strange bedfellows’ the Turks, and the Barzani led KRG, the Kurdistan Regional Government, in Erbil. When former Iraqi PM al-Maliki accused “Ankara and Erbil” of engineering the quick I.S.I.S. takeover of Mosul, the unmentioned elephantine hyperpower in the room was the US. The US, along with Israel, which is ISIS and Iraqi Kurdistan’s greatest oil purchaser, remain in charge of the game in those parts. But the Russian intervention has decimated “our terrorists” and now Turkey, egged on by US neo-cons, is itching for war with its ‘aggressor’.

Since 2001, our foreign imperial wars have been carried out by a neo-con dominated USG, whose “chicken-hawks” do not understand warfare, any more than they understand that which it destroys, society. Their latest, greatest blunder was to privatize the war business (per advice of neo-liberals), and to rely on a hierarchy of puppet states and proxies (our proxies and our puppet-state’s proxies) to do their bidding even when it contravened their own national interests. We do not hesitate to destroy Germany, if it serves our interest in isolating Russia, by cutting off their natural energy supplier in the East and flooding them with refugees, in which we have no doubt embedded “our terrorists”.

The right-wing in the US, gripes righteously about the loss of US national interests to that of international corporate influence  — but often does not realize this has been true throughout the 20th century, since 1913 at least. They also are usually ignorant of the fact that the same crooks, using a US military monster paid for by US taxpayers, have been “land-grabbing” and “asset-stripping” the rest of the world for a long, long time. The fall of the Soviet Union permitted the neo-con lunatics lurking in the basement of Reagan’s White House to contemplate a global fascist state. They have been in charge since King George I (actually, Nazi banker Prescott Bush can fairly be called King George I, and ‘W’ the Mad King George III.)

Just below, some photos we took ten or twelve years ago in this same district of Diyarbakir and other neighborhoods nearby. This was/is one of several very beautiful cities in southeast Turkey. We met old men who told of playing in their youth with Armenian, Kurdish, and Turkish kids, Christians and Muslims together.

For the first 600 years of the Ottoman empire, that was possible. Then, in the 19th century, nationalism, a vile disease, was imported by the West to tear asunder one of the world’s most long-lived and harmonious multi-ethnic, multi-religious empires. The West undermined Ottoman sovereignty with divisive ideologies, turning Turk against Kurd against Arab against Armenian against Albanian, and undermined it even more with the latest and most formidable tool of domination – debt enslavement. The military was hardly needed. Still, by 1850, the West had destroyed an economy and an ancient social fabric and had begun the rape and takeover of an older, more civilized civilization that continues to this day.

If those who struggle against the US corporate state in Oregon have any chance of instituting a just and constitutional order in the US, it has to recognize who the culprit really is, and what else it has done. It has to realize that the oppression it is now feeling, the jackboot coming down on the American West, is just the pair of that which has long crushed down on the Middle East and elsewhere throughout the world. What justified this reign of imperial oppression, of wanton land-grabbing and asset-stripping was usually some variety of “American exceptionalism” coupled with some variety of vilification of whoever owned the property the US lusted after.

The US treats Putin and Assad exactly like it treats Ammon Bundy and LaVoy Finicum. It treats the Syrian and Iraqi nations like it treated the First Nations here. Since the Clinton administration, it has treated the ranchers and other private landowners in the American West in much the same way: people in the way of profit, people that need to be removed.

That’s their only ideology. Don’t be fooled by political rhetoric. These are not “socialists,” as many on the right believe, lacking context both historical and geographical; our common oppressors are oligarchs, corrupt and crooked oligarchs. Their regime, if we want to call it anything, is “fascist.” But really, it is just organized crime. True, Big Government is an excellent asset-stripping mechanism. But government is only the controlling bankster and corporate elites’ attack dog. As Putin said, when a dog bites you, go after the owner.

Here are some photos from Diyarbakir, a dozen or so years ago. As you can see from the video in the article linked above, for the Kurds in these pictures, that must feel like an eternity now. Erdogan, who once called for “zero problems with neighbors”, now has nothing but problems with its neighbors, and relentlessly has pursued war also within his own borders. That should start to have a sickening, echoing ring to it. In fact, there is no reason to believe that the masters of proxies and the pullers of puppet-strings, the US and Israel above all, will treat their own populations any differently than they have treated others. Chickens are coming home to roost.

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