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National Security State as Racket on the Danger of Terrorism
Review of Literature

“Plunderers of the world, when nothing remains on the lands to which they have laid waste by wanton thievery, they search out across the seas. The wealth of another region excites their greed; and if it is weak, their lust for power as well. Nothing from the rising to the setting of the sun is enough for them. Among all others only they are compelled to attack the poor as well as the rich. Robbery, rape, and slaughter they falsely call empire; and where they make a desert, they call it peace.”

Tacitus, Agricola
 

News Corporatism Recommended Links Did Obama order wiretaps of Trump conversations Neofascism Nation under attack meme
Neoliberal war on reality or the importance of controlling the narrative  Inverted Totalitarism The Deep State Is national security state in the USA gone rogue ? Reconciling Human Rights With Total Surveillance Operation Gladio - Wikipedia
The problem of control of intelligence services in democratic societies History of American False Flag Operations False flag operations as an important part of demonization of the enemy strategy Mystery of Building 7 Collapse Charlie Hebdo - more questions then answers Manchester attack vs Charlie Hebdo
Total Surveillance Media-Military-Industrial Complex The Grand Chessboard Elite Theory And the Revolt of the Elite Two Party System as Polyarchy Corporate Media: Journalism In the Service of the Powerful Few
Edward Snowden as Symbol of Resistance to National Security State Facebook as Giant Database about Users Social Sites as intelligence collection tools Systematic Breach of Vienna Convention Neocolonialism as Financial Imperialism The Iron Law of Oligarchy
American Exceptionalism New American Militarism Machiavellism   Humor Etc

"The greatest threat is that we shall become like those who seek to destroy us"

the legendary US diplomat George Kennan warned in 1947

“In this present crisis, government is not the solution to our problem; government is the problem”


Ronal Reagan about a different crisis

Books have been written about President Eisenhower’s famous farewell warning in 1961 about the “military-industrial complex,” and what he described as its “unwarranted influence.” But an even greater leviathan today, one that the public knows little about, is the “intelligence-industrial complex.”

Michael Hirsh in

How America's Top Tech Companies
Created the Surveillance State )

If Tyranny and Oppression come to this land, it will be in the guise of fighting a foreign enemy.

- James Madison


Introduction

The National Security State is an ideology and practice of the USA elite, closely connected with the idea of the rule of the Media-Military-Industrial Complex, and especially three-letter agencies ("Trumanites" because of our 33rd president's role in founding the CIA, the modern Defense Department, the Joint Chiefs of Staff, and the National Security Agency).  It is somewhat different from national socialist idea as it is married to neoliberalism and does not included the decisive influence of the state in economic sphere.

Under neoliberalism society has become increasingly militarized, meaning that as most aspects of the social-democratic state (New Deal state) are eliminated, a police state is rising in its place. All problems that in the past were seen as social problems, and hence required social solutions, now acquire police solutions. Heavily militarized police became praetorian guard of 0.1% that is in power.

In economic sphere deregulation (economic liberalism or neoliberalism) produce social conflict, which at some point can not be masked by neoliberal demagogy ("shareholder value", "stakeholder participation" and other neoliberal crap).  As the state now represents interest only of the top 0.1% population, economic and political spheres became merged under authoritarian rule of financial oligarchy, not unlike the USSR under bolshevism with the only difference that "nomenklatura" was more aligned with the interests of the society then financial oligarchy,  Tax laws, inheritance rules, status to trade unions, "revolving door" regulations (which highly correlates with the degree of corruption of the society) became political decisions and  require constant brainwashing of the population and instilling fear using external threat. Terrorism is used for this purpose not unlike permanent war between Oceania and Eurasia in the Orwell's famous  novel 1984,  It is clear that the war with terrorism is quintessential for waging "permanent war for permanent peace".  This link to rampant militarism is close to what we observe in typical neo-fascist movements (Fascism - Wikipedia ):

Fascism is a form of radical authoritarian nationalism[1][2] that came to prominence in early 20th-century Europe, influenced by national syndicalism. Fascism originated in Italy during World War I and spread to other European countries. Fascism opposes liberalism, Marxism and anarchism and is usually placed on the far-right within the traditional left–right spectrum.[3][4]

Fascists saw World War I as a revolution that brought massive changes in the nature of war, society, the state, and technology. The advent of total war and total mass mobilization of society had broken down the distinction between civilian and combatant. A "military citizenship" arose in which all citizens were involved with the military in some manner during the war.[5][6] The war had resulted in the rise of a powerful state capable of mobilizing millions of people to serve on the front lines and providing economic production and logistics to support them, as well as having unprecedented authority to intervene in the lives of citizens.[5][6]

Fascists believe that liberal democracy is obsolete, and they regard the complete mobilization of society under a totalitarian one-party state as necessary to prepare a nation for armed conflict and to respond effectively to economic difficulties.[7] Such a state is led by a strong leader—such as a dictator and a martial government composed of the members of the governing fascist party—to forge national unity and maintain a stable and orderly society.[7] Fascism rejects assertions that violence is automatically negative in nature, and views political violence, war, and imperialism as means that can achieve national rejuvenation.[8][9][10][11] Fascists advocate a mixed economy, with the principal goal of achieving autarky through protectionist and interventionist economic policies.[12]

Since the end of World War II in 1945, few parties have openly described themselves as fascist, and the term is instead now usually used pejoratively by political opponents. The descriptions neo-fascist or post-fascist are sometimes applied more formally to describe parties of the far right with ideologies similar to, or rooted in, 20th century fascist movements.[13]

In this social system US intelligence apparatus and military establishment are raised to the level above and beyond civilian control and become a somewhat autonomous system, a hidden government of the USA. Deep state as it is now called. Which, as a minimum, assume the role of king maker for the most top positions in the USA government. And, if necessary, can act as a king remover (JFK assassination is a nice example here; CIA fingerprints are all over the place, but nobody from CIA went to jail for this "accomplishment": mission accomplished).

The colossal budget with  juicy cost-plus contracts of affiliated private companies gives those agencies not only tremendous power, but also vested ideological and financial interests. For example, for the moment of its creation, due to Allen Dulles background CIA was aligned with the interests of Wall Street. There no real overseeing of three letter agencies from neither executive branch, not from the Congress, nor from the Supreme Court.

But the reverse is not true. In a way they can serve as a surrogate king.   In other words, instead of the servant of the state intelligence agencies became the master. This phenomenon is not limited to the USA. The same hijacking of executive, parliamentarian and judicial braches of govern happened in other countries. A very interesting example provides the USSR: it was actually betrayal of KGB brass, who switched side and decided to privatize the country, that among other things doomed the USSR.

The key "three letter agencies" (CIA, DOD, NSA, FBI) were established by the National Security Act of 1947, signed in September 18, 1947 by President Harry S. Truman. This year can be considered as the year when National Security State was born and probably should be celebrated accordingly instead of old-fashioned Independence Day.  Very little was preserved from the "old republic" after this transformation of the USA. 

It is prudent to view National Security State as a modern form of corporatism, closely related to concepts of neo-fascism and Inverted Totalitarism. As ellatynemouth noted in the comment to the Guardian article Internet privacy as important as human rights, says UN's Navi Pillay (Dec 26, 2013):

The surveillance state is the ruling class's key hole through which they monitor us and our potential dissent. It's now an integral part of capitalism and can't be removed.

The game has changed. It's now about convincing us as much as possible that they will stop snooping on us. They won't though. It will just become more heavily hidden.

Surveillance state was made possible with the advent of computers, Internet and wireless communication. In some features it is close to neo-fascism and Latin-American far right authoritarian regimes, but there are important difference. Instead of organized violence against opponents it achieved its goals without relentless physical repression/elimination of opponents. It's key feature is mass surveillance, discreditation and blackmailing of opponents (like in German Democratic Republic there are dossier for every member of society and skeletons from the closet can be revealed for any politician or activist)  as well as control and manipulation of media, not mass repression of opponents. Like neofascist regimes of the past (such as Pinochet regime in Chile) and authoritarian "communist" regimes of the past and present, it make organized opposition to the government virtually impossible. Of the 20 characteristic traits of neo-fascist regimes probably around the half are applicable to the national security state.

After 9/11, Bush government's behavior and especially appeals to public clearly resonate with the proto-fascist "... uber alles" ideas. As an amazing example of doublespeak  Bushists managed to integrate American exceptionalism into the framework of globalist neoliberal regime (as the command-and-control center for neoliberal world empire, no less). Bush government inspired post-9/11 paranoia doesn’t come cheaply, though. Costs were staggering: the military ($682 billion), Homeland Security (about $60 billion), and 15 intelligence agencies (official figure of combined budget is perhaps $75 billion; but in reality in many times more then that). The total is probably over a trillion.

Nothing changed under President Obama, which suggests that he is just a figurehead and the  "deep state" is actually in charge. In most area Obama administration was more like Bush II administration , then "change we can believe in".  In this sense this was the most blatant "bait and switch" in the recent  political history of the USA. This is the view of Professor Michel Greenon, who in his book advocated the view that tradition troika of powers in the USA became by and large ceremonial and that real actors, at least in area of national security are not non-elected executives of super-powerful and well financed three-letter agencies. Here is a brief overview taken from review published by Reason (National Security State - Reason.com):

Though Glennon doesn't describe his thesis in terms of public choice theory, it echoes that discipline's insight that institutions are run for the benefit of the people who run the institutions. For the Trumanites, Glennon explains, "benefits take the form of enlarged budgets, personnel, missions; costs take the form of retrenchments in each." Witness the vast archipelago of intelligence facilities-nearly three Pentagons' worth of office space-that have been erected in greater Washington, D.C., since 9/11.

The national security state is becoming an autonomous, self-perpetuating entity, Glennon warns. It sets the table for elected officials' choices and increasingly dictates terms to them. The permanent bureaucracy basks in the "glow" of Madisonian institutions, drawing legitimacy from the illusion that elected officials are in charge. But while the buck may stop with the president, the real power resides with the Trumanites.

This explanation is strongest in the realm of state surveillance, which serves as Glennon's central case study. Recall the embarrassing revelation, in the summer of 2013, that the NSA was tapping German Chancellor Angela Merkel's cellphone. What did the president know, and when did he know it? If you believe top administration officials, Obama was almost as surprised as Merkel. Glennon quotes Secretary of State John Kerry to the effect that the Merkel wiretap, like a lot of NSA programs, occurred "on autopilot."

On one hand, that's what you'd expect them to say. On the other hand, the claim is entirely plausible, and it is consistent with the earlier history of NSA abuses uncovered by the Church Committee in the 1970s. Under Project SHAMROCK, for example, the NSA collected the content of virtually all cable traffic entering or leaving the United States for three decades-150,000 messages a month at its height. It was, the committee's final report concluded, "probably the largest governmental interception program affecting Americans ever undertaken." And yet it's not clear that any president ordered, approved, or was even aware of SHAMROCK. When the program's existence was exposed in the mid-'70s, Louis Tordella, longtime deputy director of the NSA, admitted that he didn't know whether any president or attorney general had ever been briefed on it.

The picture grows somewhat more complicated when we look at the modern practice of presidential war making. From the Truman administration onward, the president has accumulated enormous unchecked authority, despite James Madison's conviction that, since the executive department was "most distinguished by its propensity to war," it is "the practice of all states, in proportion as they are free, to disarm this propensity of its influence."

When it comes to picking the wars we wage, it's not clear that the Trumanites are fully in charge. Take four major war-powers decisions during the Obama administration: the Afghan surge, the escalation of drone attacks, the Libya intervention, and the current war against ISIS. I put the Trumanite win-loss record at roughly .500 here. The military and national security bureaucracy fought hard for the surge and the drone escalation, and got them. They generally opposed the Libyan action, and some prominent Trumanites-such as the chairman of the Joint Chiefs -appear to have been reluctant to endorse our latest war in the Middle East.

In the case of this most recent war, domestic politics seems a better explanation: The president yielded to the near-irresistible demand that he "do something" about the beheading of Americans and the implosion of the Iraqi state. Bombing ISIS is something, so we're doing it.

The Obama experience suggests we get the wars the Trumanites want -- and also some they don't. But this is hardly fatal to Glennon's thesis. He stresses that "a good theory of institutional behavior can predict, at best, only tendency over time"; his "predicts only that national security policy will change little from one administration to the next." So far, that theory is holding up rather well.

Even so, I've always been partial to one version of the "government politics" explanation. A few years ago, I wrote a book arguing that "Americans' unconfined conception of presidential responsibility is the source of much of our political woe and some of the gravest threats to our liberties." If the political reality is such that the president will be held personally accountable for any domestic terror attack, don't be surprised when he seeks powers nearly as vast as the expectations put upon him.

Glennon acknowledges it's not either-or; "explanations overlap," he writes. Dumb wars and security-state overreach are the result of political choices and the bureaucratic imperative. Policy continuity is depressingly overdetermined.

Real-time histories of key national security decisions in the Obama years tend to underscore this point. In Kill or Capture, reporter Daniel Klaidman describes the enormous political pressure the Obama administration was under after the failed "underwear bomber" attack on December 25, 2009. "For the White House," Klaidman writes, "the psychic toll of Christmas Day was profound. Obama realized that if a failed terror attempt could suck up so much political oxygen, a successful attack would absolutely devastate his presidency. And much as he liked to talk about returning to first principles, Obama also had a powerful instinct for self-correction-as well as self-preservation."

The psychic aftershock of Christmas 2009 helped shape a lot of what followed: from body scanners at airports to ramped-up drone strikes to the lethal targeting of an American citizen.

But to Glennon's point, the administration was under pressure from the Trumanites well before that. In the 2012 book, The Obamians: The Struggle Inside the White House to Redefine American Power, James Mann describes a concerted effort by then-CIA director Michael Hayden and other senior intelligence officials to preserve business as usual by scaring the hell out of the incoming Obama team. Their private name for this scheme was the "Aw, Shit! Campaign."

The scare tactics worked. Klaidman reports that both Harold Koh, legal advisor at the State Department, and Jeh Johnson, the Pentagon's general counsel, used the same metaphor to describe the military pressure for more targeted killings: a runaway train. It was like "a massive freight train hurling down the tracks" Koh said. "You would have to throw yourself on the tracks to try to stop it," said Johnson.

All this helps shed light on Obama's strange and disorienting May 2013 "drone speech" at the National Defense University in Washington, D.C., in which the president seemed to be speaking not as commander in chief, but as his own loyal opposition.

In the speech, Obama said things like "Unless we discipline our thinking, our definitions, our actions, we may be drawn into more wars we don't need to fight, or continue to grant Presidents unbound powers." And: "The very precision of drone strikes can also lead a president and his team to view [them] as a cure-all for terrorism." I remember thinking: "A president"? Which one? Anyone in particular? Who's in charge here, anyway?

National Security and Double Government suggests that the answer to that last question isn't quite so obvious, that the "most powerful man in the world" isn't nearly as powerful as he might appear.

It remains the case that Obama had the formal authority to say no to mass surveillance and perpetual war. But saying no would require resisting enormous bureaucratic and political pressure. And anybody willing to do what it takes to become president is unlikely to transform himself into a self-denying Cincinnatus once in office. Political survivors don't jump in front of trains.

While US government spent around $3.67 trillion in 2013, the revenue was just $2.77 trillion. Of that amount over one trillion went to three-letter agencies and DOD. Now you understand to whom real power belongs.  Moreover the government has to borrow about $900 billion in order to maintain national security state programs intact. And there are 5 million (yes million) people in the USA with security clearance and around 3 million with top security clearance. In other words "Welcome to the USSR." or even Third Reich (actually republican senators opposed Truman initiative due to fear that he replicated institution of the Third Reich in the USA and only support of powerful Democrats allowed the president to push the act through the Congress.

But even if it was close to the Third Reich in political effects and its essence, this type of political structure is different, because it does not rely on mass mobilization. Instead it relied on the power of "deep state" and mass surveillance as well as passivity of most electorate. 

As Paxton describes it (Tracking Fascism) fascism as just hypertrophied and misguided nationalism, a specific flavor of far right nationalism. The central emotions in fascism and nationalism are identical. In other words at the core of fascist emotional mobilization always lies far right nationalism and that is important distinction with national security state and neoliberalism which are globalist and  "imperial" and does not stress particular nationality as long of the person/group serves empire interests:

...Feelings propel fascism more than thought does. We might call them mobilizing passions, since they function in fascist movements to recruit followers and in fascist regimes to "weld" the fascist "tribe" to its leader. The following mobilizing passions are present in fascisms, though they may sometimes be articulated only implicitly:
  1. The primacy of the group, toward which one has duties superior to every right, whether universal or individual.
  2. The belief that one's group is a victim, a sentiment which justifies any action against the group's enemies, internal as well as external.
  3. Dread of the group's decadence under the corrosive effect of individualistic and cosmopolitan liberalism.
  4. Closer integration of the community within a brotherhood (fascio) whose unity and purity are forged by common conviction, if possible, or by exclusionary violence if necessary.
  5. An enhanced sense of identity and belonging, in which the grandeur of the group reinforces individual self-esteem.
  6. Authority of natural leaders (always male) throughout society, culminating in a national chieftain who alone is capable of incarnating the group's destiny.
  7. The beauty of violence and of will, when they are devoted to the group's success in a Darwinian struggle.

Post 9/11  "passions" in the USA were definitely skillfully used by Bush administration to push the nation into the Iraq war and the attacks on dissenters that occurred during it were pretty vicious, really in traditions of Third Reich ("you are either with us, or with our enemies"). 

But public was not really central in this whole issue. Americans were extras at best, patsies at worst,  Essentially all major decisions were made "behind the curtain" by deep state structures and public was just brainwashed into approval of those action. That's an important different between national security state and classical fascist regimes. In classic fascist state the leading fascist party would be central to unleashing such a war.  Here it was bust a bunch of highly placed bureaucrats in Bush II administration (so called neocons, which is an ideological group allied with the military industrial complex, but not an organized party as such).

Here is a more extended treatment of this issue (cited from Rush, Newspeak and Fascism An exegesis IV Tracking Fascism):

1. [Group primacy]: See, again, the Bush Doctrine. An extension of this sentiment is at play among those jingoes who argue that Americans may need to sacrifice some of their civil rights -- say, free speech -- during wartime.
2. [Victim mentality]: This meme is clearly present in all the appeals to the victims of Sept. 11 as justifications for the war. It is present at nearly all levels of the debate: from the White House, from the media, even from the jingoist entertainment industry (see, e.g., the lyric of Darryl Worley's extraordinarily popular country-western hit, "Have You Forgotten?": "Some say this country's just out looking for a fight / Well after 9/11 man I'd have to say that's right.").
3. [Dread of liberal decadence]: This meme has been stock in trade of the talk-radio crowd since at least 1994 -- at one time it focused primarily on the person of Bill Clinton -- and has reached ferocious levels during the runup to the war and after it, during which antiwar leftists have regularly and remorselessly been accused of treason.
4. [Group integration] and 5. [Group identity as personal validation] are, of course, among the primary purposes of the campaign to demonize liberals -- to simultaneously build a cohesive brotherhood of like-minded "conservatives" who might not agree on the details but are united in their loathing of all things liberal. It plays out in such localized manifestations as the KVI Radio 570th On-Air Cavalry, which has made a habit of deliberately invading antiwar protests with the express purpose of disrupting them and breaking them up. Sometimes, as they did recently in Bellingham, this is done with caravans of big trucks blaring their horns; and they are also accompanied by threatening rhetoric and acts of physical intimidation. They haven't yet bonded in violence -- someone did phone in a threat to sniper-shoot protesters -- but they are rapidly headed in that direction.
6. [Authority of leaders]: This needs hardly any further explanation, except to note that George W. Bush is actually surprisingly uncharismatic for someone who inspires as much rabid loyalty as he does. But then, that is part of the purpose of Bush's PR campaign stressing that he receives "divine guidance" -- it assures in his supporters' mind the notion that he is carrying out God's destiny for the nation, and for the conservative movement in particular.
7. [An aesthetic of violence]: One again needs only turn to the voluminous jingoes of Fox News or the jubilant warbloggers to find abundant examples of celebrations of the virtues -- many of them evidently aesthetic -- of the evidently just-completed war.

I would like to stress that similar processes occurred in different states after WWII as well (Latin America military dictatorships are one example). And with new force and on the new level after the dissolution of the USSR in Russia.  Of course the USSR was a National Security Surveillance State even before WWII, being one of the "pioneers" of this form of state along with Italy and Germany. But it was a rather "primitive" form of national security state  in a sense that it did not rely on computers, collecting "envelope" of all Internet communication, emails headers and other "meta-data" as well as systematic interception of SMS-based communications as well interception of wireless communication and financial operations via computerized banking (especially credit card transactions)  for surveillance.

Rule of Trumanites as the essence of the US National security state -- Boston Globe review of Michael Glennon book

Mickey Edwards, who served in Congress from 1977 to 1993, and is the author of “The Parties Versus the People: How to Turn Republicans and Democrats Into Americans.” published a very penetrating review of the book in  The Boston Globe. In which he stated:

It has long been the province of conspiracy theorists to claim that the real power of government is not wielded by the obvious practitioners of statecraft — presidents, members of Congress, the judiciary — but by secret or semi-secret entities, real wizards whose hidden machinations send us to war, sell us out to enemies, siphon public treasure into private hands. Depending on your talk show or paranoia of choice, these are the bankers, oil barons, one-worlders, war profiteers, Bilderbergers, Masons, Catholics, Jews, or Trilateralists. Our formal institutions, in this scenario, are stage sets, Potemkin villages; our officials are puppets; we are an unsuspecting audience.

Michael Glennon, a respected academic (Tufts’s FLETCHER SCHOOL) and author of a book brought to us by an equally respected publisher (Oxford University Press), is hardly the sort to indulge in such fantasies. And that makes the picture he paints in “National Security and Double Government” all the more arresting. Considering Barack Obama’s harsh pre-election criticisms of his predecessor’s surveillance policies, for example, Glennon notes that many of those same policies — and more of the same kind — were continued after Obama took office. “Why,” he asks, “does national security policy remain constant even when one President is replaced by another, who as a candidate repeatedly, forcefully, and eloquently promised fundamental changes in that policy?”

The answer Glennon places before us is not reassuring: “a bifurcated system — a structure of double government — in which even the President now exercises little substantive control over the overall direction of US national security policy.” The result, he writes, is a system of dual institutions that have evolved “toward greater centralization, less accountability, and emergent autocracy.”

If this were a movie, it would soon become clear that some evil force, bent on consolidating power and undermining democratic governance, has surreptitiously tunneled into the under-structure of the nation. Not so. In fact, Glennon observes, this hyper-secret and difficult-to-control network arose in part as an attempt to head off just such an outcome. In the aftermath of World War II, with the Soviet Union a serious threat from abroad and a growing domestic concern about weakened civilian control over the military (in 1949, the Hoover Commission had warned that the Joint Chiefs of Staff had become “virtually a law unto themselves”), President Truman set out to create a separate national security structure.

By 2011, according to The Washington Post, there were 46 separate federal departments and agencies and 2,000 private companies engaged in classified national security operations with millions of employees and spending of roughly a trillion dollars a year. As Glennon points out, presidents get to name fewer than 250 political appointees among the Defense Department’s nearly 700,000 civilian employees, with hundreds more drawn from a national security bureaucracy that comprise “America’s Trumanite network” — in effect, on matters of national security, a second government.

Glennon’s book is not a breezy read: It’s thick with fact and not unappreciative of conundrum (“The government is seen increasingly by elements of the public as hiding what they ought to know, criminalizing what they ought to be able to do, and spying upon what ought to be private. The people are seen increasingly by the government as unable to comprehend the gravity of security threats.”). Nor is he glib with proposed solutions: to adequately respond to the threats posed by a below-the-radar second government will require “a general public possessed of civic virtue,” which prompts Glennon to cite retired Supreme Court justice David Souter’s bemoaning of a “pervasive civic ignorance.” Not all of the problem can be laid at Truman’s feet. And if we ourselves are part of the zeitgeist that allows invisible governments to flourish, repair will be difficult. As Glennon puts it, “the term Orwellian will have little meaning to a people who have never known anything different, who have scant knowledge of history, civics, or public affairs, and who in any event have never heard of George Orwell.”

This is no secret conspiracy nor a plot to deprive Americans of their civil liberties. It is the unintended consequence of a thoughtful attempt to head off the very threats that those attempts have inadvertently created. But if Glennon’s book is enlightening it is also scary. And it’s not fiction.

Why National Security State needs provocations -- pseudo terrorist attacks (false flag attacks)

There are multiple reasons such as to instill fear, and to demonstrate competence (Big Brother’s Liberal Friends — Crooked Timber)

Dr. Hilarius, 10.27.14 at 11:44 pm
An excellent analysis and summation.

Any defense of the national security state requires the proponent to show, at a minimum, that the present apparatus is competent at its task. Having lived through Vietnam, the Gulf Wars, Iraq and Afghanistan (not to mention many smaller governmental adventures) I see no evidence of competence. Instead, it’s repetitive failures of analysis and imagination no matter how much raw intelligence is gathered.

Nor is there any evidence that existing oversight mechanisms function as intended. Recent revelations about the CIA spying on the Senate should be enough to dispel the idea that leakers have no role to play.

Kinsley is particularly loathsome. His position is little more than “your betters know best” and that the state’s critics are guttersnipes needing to be kicked to the curb. Kinsley doesn’t need a coherent position, his goal is to be a spokesman for the better sorts, nothing more...

Tremendous push (or acceleration of pre-existing tendencies) toward National Security State occurred after 9/11 under the banner of fighting terrorism. At the point technological capabilities of mass surveillance using computers and the ability to have a dossier for everybody were in place, while mass deployment of PC, credit cards and cell phones provides constant stream of information to those dossiers, not that different from "gum shoes" reports. On November, 2001 the phone records of most Americans begin flowing to the N.S.A. After 9/11, President Bush authorizes the N.S.A. to collect phone and Internet content and metadata without a warrant. Within weeks, under the so-called President’s Surveillance Program (P.S.P.), the major telephone companies voluntarily hand over the data. The N.S.A. creates a twenty-four-hour “Metadata Analysis Center” (MAC) to search the phone records. In October 26, 2001: The Patriot Act is passed. Section 215 allows the government to seize “any tangible things (including books, records, papers, documents, and other items) for an investigation to protect against international terrorism or clandestine intelligence activities.”

At this point the process started with adoption of Truman doctrine came to a logical end: national surveillance state became a reality. Formally Truman Doctrine was created "to support free peoples who are resisting attempted subjugation by armed minorities or by outside pressures." but in reality their function was more questionable and after 9/11 (some people date this event as early as 1963 -- JFK assassination) those activities created what is called "The State Within a State" similar to the USSR KGB role (see The State Within a State by Yevgenia Albats and Catherine A. Fitzpatrick). Here is one review of the book:

A Customer

passionate albeit muddled, August 24, 1999

I have problems with the author's obvious hatred of the Russian Revolution and Stalin and the way she claims there is an unbroken chain of horror going all the way back to 1917. Obviously things are better today -- hence her book! She says 66.7 million people died under "Chekist" rule since the Russian Revolution -- and then cites the Guiness Book of Records as her source!? No one could ever prove such a figure, I think its one of things that's repeated 'til it becomes fact.

I also find the author's lack of knowledge about our own CIA kind of disheartening. This fine organization has spread as much death and terror in the Third World (Indonesia, Guatemala,Chile, Argentina, Brazil etc. etc. ) as the KGB ever did anywhere, yet she seems to make them out to be benevolent compared to the KGB (which if you read this book are responsible for everything wrong with the world today).

After reading this book I still don't understand why she thinks the KGB or its incarnations are as bad today as they were at the height of the Terror in 1937. Its not really explained in the book. I still am not convinced that the KGB was the NKVD, and definitely convinced that either was the SS. Research I have done casually has never come up with hard, convincing figures for a Nazi style genocide in the USSR, and this anecdotal, unconvincing book didn't change my historical views.

See Michael J. Hogan, A Cross of Iron: Harry S. Truman and the Origins of the National Security State, 1945-1954. New York: Cambridge University Press, 1998; which "explains the transformative process that ended in the ultimate demise of the New Deal state with its emphasis on social spending and ushered in the militarist National Security State." From Amazon review:

Hogan, a specialist in American diplomatic and national security studies, has written a complex but interesting work on the emergence of the national security state. To create this state, it was necessary to merge the armed forces, the Defense Department, and scientists into a single unit to enhance the military's capabilities. To a large extent, this unification was accomplished in the 1950s. The driving forces were James Forrestal, Dean Acheson, and powerful members of Congress such as Carl Vinson (D-GA), who chaired the Committee on Naval Affairs, along with presidents Truman and Eisenhower.

Hogan presents a compelling case but overemphasizes the importance of Truman and Eisenhower while downplaying the role of Vinson and others in the security state's creation. In fact, both Truman and Eisenhower often seemed opposed to it but succumbed to pressure from Congress and key figures like Acheson. This extremely complex study, which deals with a subject few other books handle, is designed for scholars and informed lay readers interested in the creation of the "military-industrial complex." by Richard P. Hedlund, Ashland Community Coll., KY

Former CIA officer Victor Marchetti in his book "Propaganda and Disinformation: How the CIA Manufactures History" noted:

"As I pointed out in the preface to The CIA and the Cult of Intelligence in 1974, democratic governments fighting totalitarian enemies run the risk of imitating their methods and thereby destroying democracy. By suppressing historical fact, and by manufacturing historical fiction, the CIA, with its obsessive secrecy and its vast resources, has posed a particular threat to the right of Americans to be informed for the present and future by an objective knowledge of the past.

As long as the CIA continues to manipulate history, historians of its activities must be Revisionist if we are to know the truth about the agency's activities, past and present."

Attempts to curtain the surveillance proved to by fruitless.  Church Committee was probably the most important "after JFK assassination" attempt to somewhat tame three latter agencies and especially CIA, but it ended in nothing.

Later NSA overtook CIA in many areas of intelligence gathering activities. Which create internal frictions between two agencies. State Department also "infringed" in CIA role in foreign countries and, for example, in organization of neoliberal color revolutions in oil rich or strategically important countries it is difficult to tell when clandestine actions of State Department ends and clandestine actions of CIA stars and vice versa. 

In is interesting to note that even Senators feel threatened by this total surveillance system. In December 14, 2005 Senators Barack Obama, Chuck Hagel, John Kerry, Richard Durbin, and several colleagues sign a letter warning that Section 215 “would allow the government to obtain library, medical and gun records and other sensitive personal information” that “would allow government fishing expeditions targeting innocent Americans.” They demand that the records requested should “have some connection to a suspected terrorist or spy,” a requirement that would

protect innocent Americans from unnecessary surveillance and ensure that government scrutiny is based on individualized suspicion, a fundamental principle of our legal system.

In March, 2006, the Patriot Act is reauthorized without the changes sought by Obama and others.

In his October 19, 2012 review of the book Saman Mohammadi (The Excavator) wrote:

The case could be made that the creation of the CIA and the National Security State in 1947 was necessary. But after sixty years of human rights abuses, systematic attacks on the constitution, false flag terror events, assassinations of political reformers, and other horrible crimes against humanity, should not the CIA be reformed?

Let's put the question of morality aside. What are the "national security" reasons that legitimize the existence of the CIA? Once you learn that Al-Qaeda is a CIA creation and proxy insurgent army and that 9/11 was a massive false flag operation, you come to the natural conclusion that the CIA does not perform a national security role.

The CIA plays a much dirtier role: engineering the American mind. It is not denied that the shadow CIA has major influence in the mainstream media, especially amongst top newspapers such as The Washington Post and The New York Times. Michael S. Rozeff speculates that the New York Times is entirely run by the CIA.

We can't know for certain if that is true because of the lack of historical documentation in the public domain, but there is a mountain of observable evidence that proves the CIA has many of its spooks working for the New York Times. Go here for just one example.

Until the American people demand that the U.S. government commit to radical transparency and the principles enshrined in the U.S. constitution, the shadow CIA and the mainstream media can twist history and manage public perceptions of reality as much as they like.

The shadow CIA's greatest power comes from its command of the American public mind as well as its ability to create a fictional version of history. The false flag September 11 events was the shadow CIA's biggest media operation to date. It was their Mona Lisa. They painted the canvas of reality with the brush of myth, and worked day and night to shape the collective memory of the American people while the horror of the tragic attacks was still fresh in the nation's mind.

Although the shadow CIA doesn't have a total command of the American mind and of history, as proven by the rise of the global 9/11 truth and justice movement, it possesses enough media power to mold world public opinion and dictate government policy for the United States with ease. There is no question that its power is totalitarian in nature and its aims are evil. It does not serve the interests of the American people; that much is clear.

How can there be freedom when CIA officials in television studios, newspaper offices, and publishing companies drive the public conversation and form the national narrative on every issue of significance. The global alternative media is the only global civil society actor that is putting limits on the CIA's power to make up history and suppress the truth about historical events like 9/11 and the occult sacrifice of JFK.

In the past, the shadow CIA was presented with roadblocks in the Congress. But 9/11 fixed that problem. The laws and the politics changed. In "The Big Chill," author Dan Froomkin says the absence of Congressional leadership in the post-9/11 political universe has strengthened executive power. Here is an excerpt his article:

After past periods of executive excess, the Fourth Estate was certainly more robust and arguably more persistent, but it also found natural allies in the other branches of government—particularly Congress. By contrast, over the summer of 2012, the publication of a minimal amount of new information regarding drones, cyberwarfare and targeted killings incited bipartisan agreement on Capitol Hill—not to conduct hearings into what had been revealed, but to demand criminal investigations into the leaking.

That's how Congress has been ever since the terrorist attacks 11 years ago. "We never got our post 9/11 Church Committee," said Steven Aftergood, director of the Federation of American Scientists's Project on Government Secrecy, referring to a special investigative Senate committee that held hearings on widespread intelligence abuses after the Watergate scandal. "What we've got instead is the intelligence oversight committee drafting legislation to penalize leaks."

Since the Congress is not willing to stand up for the rights of the American people, the truth, human rights, and the U.S. Constitution, then the American people and global civil society must stand up. Congress has no real power. According to a recent Rasmussen survey, Congress only has an eight percent approval rating. There are underground, neo-Nazi groups in Europe that are more popular than the Congress.

The mainstream media is no better. It is content with its role as a propaganda arm of the shadow CIA, and that is a tragedy. American newspapers have the power to improve their nation and change the world for the better, but instead they choose to cover up independent investigations of shady events like 9/11 that shed light on how the U.S. government really operates.

Alternative media outlets like Infowars.com, Veterans Today, Lew Rockwell.com, Washington's Blog, The Corbett Report, and countless others are doing the best they can to educate the American people and wake up humanity.

The last thing the shadow CIA wants to see is an informed and awakened America. It is waging a silent war on human consciousness because it is scared of an enlightened world. A world that is awake and aware of its crimes against humanity is its greatest nightmare.

If the shadow CIA has its way, it will continue inventing stories and passing it off as history with total immunity. But the global alternative media is telling the shadow CIA: Enough is enough, stop lying to the American people and the world.

The CIA's reckless disregard of U.S. traditions and laws made former President Harry Truman rethink his decision to create the CIA in the first place. On December 22, 1963, Truman wrote in The Washington Post:

For some time I have been disturbed by the way the CIA has been diverted from its original assignment. It has become an operational and at times a policy-making arm of the Government. This has led to trouble and may have compounded our difficulties in several explosive areas. I never had any thought that when I set up the CIA that it would be injected into peacetime cloak and dagger operations.

On August 17, 1975 Senator Frank Church stated on NBC's Meet the Press without mentioning the name of the NSA about this agency (Wikipedia):

In the need to develop a capacity to know what potential enemies are doing, the United States government has perfected a technological capability that enables us to monitor the messages that go through the air. Now, that is necessary and important to the United States as we look abroad at enemies or potential enemies. We must know, at the same time, that capability at any time could be turned around on the American people, and no American would have any privacy left such is the capability to monitor everything—telephone conversations, telegrams, it doesn’t matter. There would be no place to hide.

If this government ever became a tyrant, if a dictator ever took charge in this country, the technological capacity that the intelligence community has given the government could enable it to impose total tyranny, and there would be no way to fight back because the most careful effort to combine together in resistance to the government, no matter how privately it was done, is within the reach of the government to know. Such is the capability of this technology.

I don’t want to see this country ever go across the bridge. I know the capacity that is there to make tyranny total in America, and we must see to it that this agency and all agencies that possess this technology operate within the law and under proper supervision so that we never cross over that abyss. That is the abyss from which there is no return.[11]

Jack Nelson-Pallmeyer list of features of National security state

In his book "Brave New World Order" (Orbis Books, 1992, paper), Jack Nelson-Pallmeyer argues that the Bush I war in Iraq (as well as Bush II invasion and occupation of the country) was an action of the military industrial complex usurping the "peace dividend". Iraq was attractive target as it has oil and far enough away to prove a good vehicle for eating up contract cash. He views the rise of the National Security Defense State as a consequence of "the threat of peace" for military industrial complex and identifies seven characteristics of a such a state:

  1. The military is the highest authority. In a National Security State the military not only guarantees the security of the state against all internal and external enemies, it has enough power to determine the overall direction of the society. In a National Security State the military exerts important influence over political, economic, as well as military affairs.
  2. Political democracy and democratic elections are viewed with suspicion, contempt, or in terms of political expediency. National Security States often maintain an appearance of democracy. However, ultimate power rests with the military or within a broader National Security Establishment.
  3. The military and related sectors wield substantial political and economic power. They do so in the context of an ideology which stresses that 'freedom" and "development" are possible only when capital is concentrated in the hands of elites.
  4. Obsession with enemies. There are enemies of the state everywhere. Defending against external and/or internal enemies becomes a leading preoccupation of the state, a distorting factor in the economy, and a major source of national identity and purpose.
  5. The working assumption is that the enemies of the state are cunning and ruthless. Therefore, any means used to destroy or control these enemies is justified.
  6. It restricts public debate and limits popular participation through secrecy or intimidation. Authentic democracy depends on participation of the people. National Security States limit such participation in a number of ways: They sow fear and thereby narrow the range of public debate; they restrict and distort information; and they define policies in secret and implement those policies through covert channels and clandestine activities. The state justifies such actions through rhetorical pleas of "higher purpose" and vague appeals to "national security."
  7. The church is expected to mobilize its financial, ideological, and theological resources in service to the National Security State.
Now we can add one additional feature
  1. Total surveillance

Compare that definition of the National Security State with the definition of Inverted Totalitarism. Most countries now have features of both.

The debate about National Security State reemerged in June 2008 due to revelations make about existence of the Prism program and similar program by British security services. For example, Jacob Augstein used the term "Obama's Soft Totalitarianism" in his article Europe Must Stand Up to American Cyber-Snooping published by SPIEGEL.

Here is an interesting comment of user MelFarrellSr in The Guardian discussion of the article NSA analysts 'willfully violated' surveillance systems, agency admits (August 24, 2013):

Here's the thing about the NSA, the GCHQ, Yahoo, Google, Microsoft, et al...

We all have to stop commenting as if the NSA and the GCHQ are in this thing on their own; the reality is that no one was supposed to know one iota about any of these programs; the NSA and the GCHQ began and put in place the structure that would allow all internet service providers, and indeed all corporations using the net, the ability to track and profile each and every user on the planet, whether they be using the net, texting, cell, and landline.

We all now know that Google, Yahoo, and the rest, likely including major retailers, and perhaps not so major retailers, are all getting paid by the United States government, hundreds of millions of dollars of taxpayer money, our money, to profile 24/7 each and every one of us..., they know how we think, our desires, our sexual preferences, our religious persuasion, what we spend, etc.; make no mistake about it, they know it all, and what they don’t currently have, they will very soon…

These agencies and indeed all those who are paid by them, will be engaged over the next few weeks in a unified program of "perception management" meaning that they will together come up with an all-encompassing plan that will include the release of all manner of statements attesting to the enforcement of several different disciplinary actions against whomever for "illegal" breaches of policy...

They may even bring criminal actions against a few poor unfortunate souls who had no idea they would be sacrificed as one part of the "perception management" game.

Has anyone wondered why, to date, no one in power has really come out and suggested that the program must be curtailed to limit its application to terrorism and terrorist types?

Here’s why; I was fortunate recently to have given an education on how networks such as Prism, really work, aside from the rudimentary details given in many publications. They cannot, and will not, stop monitoring even one individuals activity, because to do so will eventually cause loss of the ability to effectively monitor as many as 2.5 Million individuals.

Remember the “Two to Three Hop” scenario, which the idiot in one of the hearings inadvertently spoke of; therein lies the answer. If the average person called 40 unique people, three-hop analysis would allow the government to mine the records of 2.5 million Americans Do the math; Internet usage in the United States as of June 30, 2012 reached a total of over 245,000,000 million…

The following link shows how connected the world is… http://www.internetworldstats.com/stats2.htm

We should never forget how the Internet began, and who developed it, the United States Armed Forces; initially it was known as Arpanet, see excerpt and link below…

"The Internet may fairly be regarded as a never-ending worldwide conversation." - Supreme Court Judge statement on considering first amendment rights for Internet users.

"On a cold war kind of day, in swinging 1969, work began on the ARPAnet, grandfather to the Internet. Designed as a computer version of the nuclear bomb shelter, ARPAnet protected the flow of information between military installations by creating a network of geographically separated computers that could exchange information via a newly developed protocol (rule for how computers interact) called NCP (Network Control Protocol).”

http://inventors.about.com/library/weekly/aa091598.htm

There is no government anywhere on the planet that will give up any part of the program…, not without one hell of a fight...

Incidentally, they do hope and believe that everyone will come to the same conclusion; they will keep all of us at bay for however long it takes; they have the money, they have the time, and they economically control all of us...

Pretty good bet they win...

Whether the United States stands within the order of international law or outside it ?

The book American Exceptionalism and Human Rights (edited by Ignatieff) raised an important and probably the most controversial question in world politics: whether the United States stands within the order of international law or outside it.

Following are based on the article by Laurence W. Britt published in Free Inquiry magazine

To a secular humanist, the principles of international law seems logical, right, and crucial. Yet, there is one archetypal political philosophy that is anathema to almost all of these principles. It is fascism. And fascism’s principles are wafting in the air today, surreptitiously masquerading as something else, challenging everything we stand for. The cliché that people and nations learn from history is not only overused, but also overestimated; often we fail to learn from history, or draw the wrong conclusions. Sadly, historical amnesia is the norm.

We are two-and-a-half generations removed from the horrors of Nazi Germany, although constant reminders jog the consciousness. German and Italian fascism form the historical models that define this twisted political worldview. Although they no longer exist, this worldview and the characteristics of these models have been imitated by protofascist regimes at various times in the twentieth century. Both the original German and Italian models and the later protofascist regimes show remarkably similar characteristics. Although many scholars question any direct connection among these regimes, few can dispute their visual similarities.

Beyond the visual, even a cursory study of these fascist and protofascist regimes reveals the absolutely striking convergence of their modus operandi. This, of course, is not a revelation to the informed political observer, but it is sometimes useful in the interests of perspective to restate obvious facts and in so doing shed needed light on current circumstances.

The following regimes can be studies in this respect: Nazi Germany, Fascist Italy, Franco’s Spain, Salazar’s Portugal, Papadopoulos’s Greece, Pinochet’s Chile, and Suharto’s Indonesia. They constitute a mixed bag of national identities, cultures, developmental levels, and history. But they all followed the fascist or protofascist model in obtaining, expanding, and maintaining power. Further, all these regimes have been overthrown, so a more or less complete picture of their basic characteristics and abuses is possible. Analysis of these seven regimes reveals fourteen common threads that link them in recognizable patterns of national behavior and abuse of power. These basic characteristics are more prevalent and intense in some regimes than in others, but they all share at least some level of similarity.

One can wonder how many of those are applicable to Bush/McCain. What do you think ?
  1. Propaganda of nationalism and Exceptionalism ("shining city on the hill", beckon of democracy, etc). Prominent displays of flags and ubiquitous lapel pins. The fervor to show patriotic nationalism, both on the part of the regime itself and of citizens caught up in its frenzy. Pride in the military, and demands for unity are way of expressing this nationalism. It was usually coupled with a level of suspicion of things foreign that often bordered on xenophobia (French fries - Freedom fries).

  2. Disdain for the importance of human rights. Despite "freedom rhetorics" the party views human rights as of little value and a hindrance to realizing the objectives of the ruling elite. Through clever use of propaganda, the population was brought to accept these human rights abuses by marginalizing, even demonizing, those being targeted. When abuse was egregious and truth about gulags is out, the tactic was to use secrecy, denial, and disinformation.

  3. Identification of enemies/scapegoats as a unifying cause. The use of scapegoating as a means to divert the people’s attention from other problems, to shift blame for failures, and to channel frustration in controlled directions. The methods of choice—relentless propaganda and disinformation—were usually effective. Often the parties would incite “spontaneous” acts against the target scapegoats, such as Muslims, communists/socialists/liberals, ethnic and racial minorities, traditional national enemies, members of other religions, secularists, homosexuals, and “terrorists.” Opponents of these party were inevitably labeled as terrorists stooges and dealt with accordingly.

  4. The supremacy of the military/avid militarism. Ruling elites identified closely with the military. A disproportionate share of national budget is allocated to the military, even when domestic needs were acute. The military was seen as an ultimate expression of nationalism, and was used whenever possible to assert national goals, intimidate other nations, and increase the power and prestige of the ruling elite.

  5. Sexism. Beyond the simple fact that the political elite and the national culture were male-dominated, the party covertly views women as second-class citizens. Often are both anti-abortion and homophobic with the cover of religious values. For propaganda reasons those attitudes were masterfully blended into strong support of the fundamentalist religious sects, thus lending the party some legitimacy to cover for its abuses.

  6. A controlled mass media. The mass media could be relied upon never to stray from the party line. Control can be indirect and subtle with formal adoption of slogan about "free media". Methods included the control of licensing, access to resources, economic pressure, appeals to patriotism, and implied threats. The leaders and owners of the mass media are part of the power elite. The result is rampant brainwashing, which usually success in keeping the general public unaware of the party's excesses.

  7. Obsession with national security. A national security apparatus is bend to come under direct control of the ruling elite. It is used to bypass laws as a direct instrument of oppression, operating in secret and beyond any constraints. Its actions were justified under the rubric of protecting “national security,” and questioning its activities was portrayed as unpatriotic or even treasonous.

  8. Abuse of religion. The party attaches itself to the dominant religion of the country and chose to portray themselves as militant defenders of religious values. The fact that the ruling elite’s behavior was incompatible with those values is swept under the rug. Propaganda kept up the illusion that the ruling elites were defenders of the faith and opponents are “godless.” A perception was manufactured that opposing the party is tantamount to an attack on religion.

  9. Power of corporations protected. Although the personal life of ordinary citizens was under strict control, the ability of large corporations to operate in relative freedom was not compromised. The ruling elite saw the corporate structure as a way to not only ensure military production (in developed states), but also as an additional means of social control. Members of the economic elite were often pampered by the political elite to ensure a continued mutuality of interests, especially in the repression of “have-not” citizens.

  10. Power of organized labor suppressed or eliminated. Since organized labor was seen as the one power center that could challenge the political hegemony of the ruling elite and its corporate allies, it was inevitably crushed or made powerless. The poor formed an underclass, viewed with suspicion or outright contempt. Being poor was considered akin to a vice.

  11. Disdain and suppression of intellectuals. Intellectuals and the inherent freedom of ideas and expression associated with them were anathema to these party. Intellectual and academic freedom were considered subversive to national security and the patriotic ideal. Universities professors come under close scrutiny; politically unreliable faculty harassed or eliminated. Unorthodox ideas or scientific theories, especially economic, are strongly attacked, silenced, or crushed.

  12. Obsession with crime and punishment. Draconian systems of criminal justice with huge prison populations. The police is often glorified and had almost unchecked power, leading to rampant abuse. Criminal charges sometimes are used against political opponents. Fear, and hatred, of criminals or “traitors” was often promoted among the population as an excuse for more police power.

  13. Rampant cronyism and corruption. Those in business circles and close to the power elite often used their position to enrich themselves. This corruption worked both ways; the power elite would receive financial gifts and property from the economic elite, who in turn would gain the benefit of government favoritism. With the national security apparatus under control and the media muzzled, this corruption was largely unconstrained and not well understood by the general population.

  14. Fraudulent elections. Elections in the form of two candidates representing the same power elite are usually bogus. When actual elections with candidates were held, they would usually be perverted by the power elite to get the desired result. Common methods included maintaining control of the election machinery, intimidating and disenfranchising opposition voters, suppressing responsibilities for legal votes, and, as a last resort, turning to a judiciary beholden to the power elite.

Does any of this ring alarm bells? Of course not. After all, this is America, officially a democracy with the rule of law, a constitution, a free press, honest elections, and a well-informed public constantly being put on guard against evils. Historical comparisons like these are just exercises in verbal gymnastics. Maybe, maybe not.

Edward Snowden quotes about National Security State

The most recent debate about the legitimacy of national security state as exists in the USA was sparked by Edward Snowden revelations. The following are 27 quotes from Edward Snowden about National Security State modus operandi  might send a chill up your spine...


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National Security State Bulletin, 2017 National Security State Bulletin, 2016 National Security State Bulletin, 2015

[May 18, 2018] Foreign Policy Insiders try to Scuttle Trump-Kim Nukes Deal by Mike Whitney

With so little and so controversial information it is impossible even to judge what is true and wht is not in NK-US confrontation.
May 18, 2018 | www.unz.com

The biggest obstacle Donald Trump is going to face in his upcoming negotiations with Kim Jong-un, is not Kim's unwillingness to abandon his nuclear weapons program, but resistance from powerful elements in the foreign policy establishment who will do everything they can to scuttle the agreement. We've already seen an example of this just this week when US nuclear bombers were included in the US-Korea joint military drills that are currently underway in the south. The B-52′s were clearly added to the massive "Max Thunder" exercises to provoke the DPRK leadership, increase tensions, and convince Kim that it was pointless to trust Washington. The move was bitterly criticized in North Korea's state media which summed up the situation like this:

"At a time when the DPRK-U.S. summit is approaching, the U.S. has launched the largest ever drill involving B-52 strategic nuclear bomber, F-22 Raptor stealth fighters and other nuclear strategic assets. This is an extremely provocative and ill-boding act going against the trend for peace and security on the Korean peninsula .The extremely adventurous 2018 Max Thunder joint air combat exercises are aimed at precision strike on key strategic objects of the DPRK and the seizure of the air control together with the U.S ."

The North's assessment is entirely correct. The drills are a simulation of a preemptive attack on North Korea that would annihilate the military, level Pyongyang and "decapitate" the leadership. They are a deliberate provocation designed to poison the atmosphere prior to the June 12 summit in Singapore. They're also a clear violation of the Panmunjom Declaration which affirms the mutual commitment of the North and South "to completely cease all hostile acts against each other in every domain, including land, air and sea, that are the source of military tension and conflict." (Panmunjom Declaration)

What we'd like to know is whether Trump was consulted about the drills? Did he give the go-ahead? Was it his decision to tweak Kim's nose after Kim had just made a number of conciliatory gestures including the total banning of nuclear weapons and ballistic missiles tests, the returning of three US prisoners to US custody, and meeting with leaders in the south in order to end hostilities and normalize relations? Is Trump responsible for this diplomatic disaster?

Of course not. Trump's objectives are completely clear. He wants to win the Nobel Prize and he wants to be recognized as a foreign policy genius, both of which are within his grasp if he persuades Kim to ditch his nukes. Trump does not want to provoke Kim who, so far, has acted in good faith. He wants to cut a deal with him. The exercises represent the interests of some other constituency, some deeper faction within the national security state who have a stake in the outcome of future negotiations. They want the talks to fail so they can preserve the status quo. They want a divided Korea that "languishes in a permanent state of colonial dependency". That works just fine for them, which is why the military drills were not postponed or cancelled. It's also why John Bolton has been making incendiary comments about the "Libya model", and why the media has been fueling public pessimism while misrepresenting US position. According to many media reports, the North will be expected to 'totally decommission its nuclear weapons, missiles and biochemical weapons' without any immediate compensation.

That's not the deal. That's never been the deal. No one on the North Korean side ever said that Washington was going to get something for nothing. And it's not going to happen either. Kim is looking for a tradeoff, a decommissioning of his nuclear weapons in exchange for basic security guarantees. That's the deal.

So who's spreading all these false rumors and what is their objective? Here's more from North Korea's state media:

"The U.S. is miscalculating the magnanimity of the DPRK as signs of weakness and trying to embellish and advertise as if these are the product of its sanctions and pressure.

The U.S. is trumpeting as if it would offer economic compensation and benefit in case we abandon nukes. But we have never had any expectation of U.S. support in carrying out our economic construction and will not make such a deal in future .

If the Trump administration takes an approach to the DPRK-U.S. summit with sincerity for improved DPRK-U.S. relations, it will receive a deserved response from us. However, if the U.S. is trying to drive us into a corner to force our unilateral nuclear abandonment, we will no longer be interested in such dialogue and cannot but reconsider our proceeding to the DPRK-U.S. summit." (End of statement)

The North doesn't want Washington's money or its economic inducements. The North wants assurances that the US will not attack it in the future. That's it. That's what Kim wants. He wants an end to the hostilities so he can move ahead with a regional economic-integration plan that will draw the two Koreas closer together, end the North's isolation, strengthen the North's economy, and pave the way for prosperity. In other words, Kim is offering to give up his nuclear weapons to (essentially) get Washington off its back and out of its hair.

None of this has anything to do with Trump's absurd "maximum pressure" campaign, which had no impact on Kim's decision at all. The North is not motivated by Trump's hysterical threats of "total destruction", but by a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to emerge from its long-term seclusion and become an active participant in an ambitious economic integration plan that will link North and South Korea to the rest of Asia via massive infrastructure and energy projects. The only catch to this proposal, is that the DPRK must abandon its nuclear weapons program and agree to resolve its issues with Seoul. In other words, Kim's eagerness to denuclearize is not an attempt to placate Washington, but an effort to meet the minimal requirements of his economic partners in Beijing, Moscow and Seoul.

The United States is not central to the critical economic-political developments on the peninsula, in fact, the region is making a concerted effort to sever its ties with Washington by creating a giant free trade zone that will connect the region through " large trilateral infrastructural and energy projects," to Japan, Southeast Asia, Central Asia and Europe. Check this out from the Kremlin website:

"The Korean Government has recently created the Northern Economic Cooperation Committee This has completed the creation of a management system that will make Korea the leader in the development of the Far East. The Committee is tasked with strengthening economic cooperation with Northeast Asian and Eurasian countries. In the future, cooperation between the Committee and Russia's Far Eastern Federal District and the Ministry for the Development of the Russian Far East will play a key role in the development of the Far East.

Next year, we will create a Korean-Russian Regional Cooperation Forum. It should bolster contacts between regional governments in Korea and the Russian Far East. Cooperation channels between regional economic communities and small and medium-sized businesses will greatly expand contacts between people and promote practical cooperation ..

The North Korean nuclear and missile ambitions are the biggest threat to the development of the huge potential of the Korean Peninsula and the Russian Far East. This is why we have come to the conclusion that this problem must be settled as soon as possible." (Kremlin website)

See what's going on? Kim has been asked to choose between prosperity or nukes, and he has wisely chosen prosperity. He has decided to participate in a common economic space that allows commerce to flourish without the bulk of the profits to be siphoned off by the voracious western corporations. Is it any wonder why powerful members of the foreign policy establishment want to torpedo the plan?

The integration plan is not some pie-in-the-sky apparition, but a broad and detailed economic blueprint for regional development; power plants, highways, high-speed rail, and pipeline corridors. It's the whole nine yards. Here's more from The South China Morning Post:

"President Moon Jae-in gave the North's leader Kim Jong-un a USB drive containing a "New Economic Map of the Korean Peninsula" at the fortified border village of Panmunjom on April 27. The initiative included three economic belts – one connecting the west coast of the peninsula to China, making the region a centre of logistics; one connecting the east coast to Russia for energy cooperation and one on the current border to promote tourism.

"The new economic map includes railway links between the two Koreas and China's northeast stretching all the way to Europe ."

"The plan would have a huge impact on China's northeastern region as it would transform the region as a centre of logistics in East Asia, which could function as a driving force for the rapid economic growth of the region .A railway connection would bring a myriad of investments from overseas and would help the economy take off."

Yet observers added that the initiatives were dependent on Kim accepting Seoul's definition of denuclearisation – namely the complete, verifiable and irreversible dismantling of the North's nuclear programme." (The South China Morning Post)

Kim must denuclearize in order to take advantage of this unprecedented opportunity, which is why he is eager to make hefty concessions to Trump while getting very little in return. Think about it: Trump gets the nukes and the Nobel Prize while Kim gets a lousy piece of paper with Washington's guarantees for security. That's a great deal for Trump but not a very good deal for Kim. Even so, Kim is prepared to cooperate in order to meet his obligations and move forward with an economic plan that will strengthen his economy and improve the lives of his people. He's making the right choice.

Some of Trump's deep state opponents probably think that they can derail Kim's plans by sabotaging the June 12th Summit. But that's not entirely true. Kim does not need to reach an agreement with Trump, he merely has to convince his main trading partner, Beijing, that he's made a sincere effort that was rejected by an unreasonable and tyrannical Washington. If Kim proves that he's willing to go the extra mile for peace– by offering to decommission his nuclear arsenal– then Beijing is going to reward his behavior by easing the sanctions and restoring the DPRK's economic lifeline. Bottom line: Kim is going to win one way or another.

In my opinion, the cat-n-mouse game Kim is playing with Trump is a bit of a ruse because, in truth, Kim is going to have to give up his nukes whether he makes a deal with Trump or not. As we said earlier, Moscow, Beijing and Seoul have all made denuclearization a basic requirement for participation in their economic integration plan, so it's a done deal. Kim is going to have to abandon his nuclear weapons. The fact is, Russia and China don't want the smaller, surrounding nations to have nukes any more than the US wants Mexico, Canada or Cuba to have them. It dramatically impacts regional security.

Finally, it wouldn't surprise me if Washington's deep state powerbrokers are more concerned about the proposed regional free trade zone, then they are about the North's nuclear weapons. In order for the US to be a major player in the most populous and prosperous region in the world, it must implement its "pivot to Asia" strategy that controls China's explosive growth and prevents the emergence of an economic or military rival. The so called "Putin Plan" for vast economic integration is a direct threat to Washington's dream of maintaining its dominant position in the global economy. If successfully implemented, the Putin Plan will greatly accelerate the pace of imperial decline.

So far, I don't see any indication that Washington knows how to deal with this threat. ← Did Trump Scrap the Nuke's Deal to Pay ... Category: Foreign Policy Tags: China , Donald Trump , North Korea Recently from Author

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Carlton Meyer , Website May 18, 2018 at 4:17 am GMT

North Korea has been trying to cut a peace deal for decades, but our Deep State blocks all such efforts. I documented the wasteful and aggressive efforts of US Army generals to thwart peace in a series of articles. This was the latest:

http://www.g2mil.com/casey.htm

Taxpayers are shocked to read what's been going on this past decade to stop peace and profit from warmongering!

Monty Ahwazi , May 18, 2018 at 4:59 am GMT
The MIC will be under tremendous amount of pressure from the American people if it didn't create phony and perceived enemies by propaganda! The MIC knows that if it didn't do that the military budget will erode over time meaning less money in the MIC pockets!
renfro , May 18, 2018 at 5:35 am GMT
@Carlton Meyer

Very informative and disgusting.
Thanks.

MEFOBILLS , May 18, 2018 at 5:47 am GMT
So far, I don't see any indication that Washington knows how to deal with this threat.

America pivots away from Atlantacist doctrine.

America turns away from finance capitalism (state sponsored usury) and resurrects the "American System" of Peshine Smith and Henry Clay. The American System is internal growth using Industrial Capitalism, where Treasury Money (not corporate bank credit) channels into the commons and industry.

In other words, America resurrects Constitutional Money and Industry. This type of economy was at the birth of the U.S., especially in Massachusetts and Pennsylvania colonies.

America can make all it needs internally, it doesn't need Atlantacist "ship-borne" movement of minerals and goods. America is a continental country like Russia with everything it needs.

Island countries like U.K. need "Atlantacist" doctrine to control the world. BIZWOG (Britain and Israel World Government) is the core of Atlantacism, not the U.S.

Oligarchs in America who benefit from the Atlantacist system will have to be ejected by force. A good parasite makes its host think said parasite is beneficial.

jilles dykstra , May 18, 2018 at 6:16 am GMT
I suppose Kim understand quite well that giving away his atomic bombs and missiles is the beginning of his end like Saddam and Ghadaffi.
In the good old days deposed dictators went to their south of France mansions and died in their beds.
The USA changed this custom.
This change does have repercussions.
A USA at crossroads, dominating the world or not, causes much uncertainty in the world.
Anon [178] Disclaimer , May 18, 2018 at 6:54 am GMT
The same kind of thing happened back during the Cuban Missile Crisis: elements of the government attempted to provoke the Soviets into attacking American reconnaissance aircraft so they'd have an excuse to fire back and invade.

Bolton's comments about "Libya" were a transparent attempt to scuttle the deal. He knew that the N. Korean leadership had watched the tapes of Qaddafi being killed; N. Korea directly stated that Libya was the reason for them developing nukes, so Bolton knew how the comments would be taken. He was hoping to sneak them by unnoticed. Meanwhile, neocons like William Krystal say "we need to be willing to walk away from negotiations." That's what they are hoping for.

Anonymous [392] Disclaimer , May 18, 2018 at 8:06 am GMT
Interesting.

I think the author might be saying that Kim might cut out Trump from all de-nuke talks and instead go around him.

In this case, Kim would ignore Trump and the US altogether and turn his nukes over to China. China and Russia would give security guarantees to N Korea which is worth a million times more than a US guarantee and China and Russia have a clear incentive to back it up.

Meanwhile the US and especially Trump would look bad. Trump would be viewed as having a Nobel prize within his grasp but bungling it at the goal line while letting China and Russia steal his thunder.

The US, if they tried any funny business, would look really bad. What could they do amyway?

Ironically, it could actually be Kim that gets the Nobel prize instead. Lol if it goes down that way.

animalogic , May 18, 2018 at 8:25 am GMT
Great article.
As per usual, msm misrepresents reality of Nth Korea's reaction to military drills: no mention of the added full compliment of strategic air force. Failure to properly explain the meaning of "Libyia solution". No wonder the Nth questions the competence & good faith of the Sth.
I believe its time for China-Russia etc to come out of the shadows: how can the Nth agree to discarding its nuclear shield without security guarantees from its friends ? That the US can't be trusted with its enemies -- OR its friends is obvious to all but the self-interested & the fanatic.
jacques sheete , May 18, 2018 at 10:15 am GMT
Here, no doubt is the problem as the rulers of the USA see it.

[Kim] wants an end to the hostilities so he can move ahead with a regional economic-integration plan that will draw the two Koreas closer together, end the North's isolation, strengthen the North's economy, and pave the way for prosperity.

None of that must be allowed to happen unless it's under the authority of our jealous commercial and political G-ds. It's essentially the big reason for all US involvement in foreign wars since 1898 if not earlier. Probably the big reason for the Lincoln's War of Northern Bankers Against Southern Planters as well.

What was needed to make the world safe for peace, [the old liberals] argued, was to implement economic freedom, free trade and goodwill among the nations, and popular government. I want to stress the importance of both of these requirements: free trade at home and in international relations, and democracy. The fateful error of our age has consisted in the fact that it dropped the first of these requirements, namely free trade, and emphasized only the second one, political democracy. In doing so, people ignored the fact that democracy cannot be permanently maintained when free enterprise, free trade, and economic freedom do not exist.

-Ludwig von Mises, Economic Causes of War

https://www.mises.org/profile/ludwig-von-mises

I would also add that people ignored the fact that peace cannot be permanently maintained when free enterprise, free trade, and economic freedom do not exist and I believe that's the point Mises was making. Neither can peace be maintained when we allow ignorant crackpots to pilot the ship, and that's what "we've" been doing since the institution of the so called "democratic republic."

Also, I'm not a huge fan of democracy, especially for a large state, and there should be no large states especially world government. All states claim a monopoly on force and all inevitably lead to political and economic slavery. They are not compatible with either freedom or peace.

jacques sheete , May 18, 2018 at 10:20 am GMT
Oops, I should have read further before posting my comment, above.

Mike already made the point and is spot on, here

He has decided to participate in a common economic space that allows commerce to flourish without the bulk of the profits to be siphoned off by the voracious western corporations. Is it any wonder why powerful members of the foreign policy establishment want to torpedo the plan?

jacques sheete , May 18, 2018 at 10:41 am GMT
@Anon

The same kind of thing happened back during the Cuban Missile Crisis: elements of the government attempted to provoke the Soviets into attacking American reconnaissance aircraft so they'd have an excuse to fire back and invade.

True, and there is a pattern.

" this entire myth, so prevalent then and even now about Hitler, and about the Japanese, is a tissue of fallacies from beginning to end. Every plank in this nightmare evidence is either completely untrue or not entirely the truth.

If people should learn this intellectual fraud about Hitler's Germany, then they will begin to ask questions, and searching questions "

Murray Rothbard, Revisionism for Our Time
Mr. Rothbard was an American Jew and an historian of the very highest caliber.

http://mises.org/daily/2592

Nowadays we can add Saddam, Qadaffi, Kim, Putin, and others to the list.

Renoman , May 18, 2018 at 10:43 am GMT
America is simply evil. Evil evil evil.
The Alarmist , May 18, 2018 at 11:07 am GMT

"So far, I don't see any indication that Washington knows how to deal with this threat."

Sure they do: They plan to act like the proverbial chess-playing pigeon, wings-a-flapping, knocking down all the pieces, and shitting all over the board.

They will keep emphasizing the grave threat the Norks pose to the American people, they will ratchet up sanctions on the nations that "prop up" the Nork regime by trade (though they will continue to be lenient to South Korea as long as it buys US arms), they will start locking those other nations out of SWIFT, etc., and ultimately they will strike to decapitate the Norks, even if they have to go it alone. They are banking on the belief that the Chinese and South Koreans will stand down in the face of all of our awesomeness.

Cold N. Holefield , Website May 18, 2018 at 11:59 am GMT
It's not the Libya Plan , it's the Chile Plan . Trump promises Kim he can be Dictator for Life , like Putin and Trump if he has his druthers and Xi too, if he promises to drop his Nuke Program .

This is where the world is headed. The Post Carbon World is to be divvied up into Fiefdoms run by Oligarch Tyrants and they all belong to the Consortium known as The Worldwide Oligarch Network . A Confederacy of Oligarchic Fiefdoms .

In otherwords, a giant Global Plantation of sorts.

Here's yah julip, Massa Hawkins, all minty & frosty, jus like you like it!!

Get accustomed to saying that or something akin to it because it's coming to a theater near you in the not-too-distant future.

Cold N. Holefield , Website May 18, 2018 at 12:12 pm GMT

See what's going on? Kim has been asked to choose between prosperity or nukes, and he has wisely chosen prosperity. He has decided to participate in a common economic space that allows commerce to flourish without the bulk of the profits to be siphoned off by the voracious western corporations. Is it any wonder why powerful members of the foreign policy establishment want to torpedo the plan?

Stop with this nonsense. Yes, you're correct, Kim doesn't want that prosperity siphoned off by Western Corporations . Why? Because he and his cronies will be doing the siphoning, thank you very much. Let's not paint this tyrant as a Goody Two Shoes , because he's not.

Fyi, my criticism of Kim doesn't mean I agree with threatening North Korea or that I agree with how the Western Foreign Policy Establishment has treated North Korea historically. What it means is, there are no Good Guys in this equation. They're ALL Bad Guys .

Say Goodnight To The Bad Guy

Sean , May 18, 2018 at 12:27 pm GMT
http://www.tampabay.com/opinion/editorials/Trump-backs-off-China-tariff-threat-as-China-pumps-money-into-a-Trump-family-project_168320640

The biggest obstacle Donald Trump is going to face in his upcoming negotiations with Kim Jong-un, is not Kim's unwillingness to abandon his nuclear weapons program, but resistance from powerful elements in the foreign policy establishment of China who will use Trump's desire for a foriegn policy success to weaken the trade agreement so China can continue deindustrialising Ameraica and the rest of the West .

Kim put Trump in the land of the promised, then went back on his word to get Trump to concede on trade, and of course Trump is doing just that. The deep state will sell out the long term interests of their country in the name of security consideration. Politicians want to get that foreign policy coup, which the North Koreans are perennially dangling. They Koreans will never give up the nukes that China effectively gave them unless the Chinese order them to, and that will only happen isTrump completely sells out the US on trade. The US would not dare attack North Korea and risk Chinese military intervention AGAIN. China is holding all the cards unless Trump just refuses to play diplomatic dupe to decepticon Korea (north and south for South Korea also wants access to the Western market) . Korean diplomacy basically consists of giving America false hope. The best thing is would be to leave North Koreato stew in their own juice, and impose tariffs on China, Japan and South Korea too. They are all aggressor states.

How courteous is the Japanese;
He always says, "Excuse it, please."
He climbs into his neighbor's garden,
And smiles, and says, "I beg your pardon";
He bows and grins a friendly grin,
And calls his hungry family in;
He grins, and bows a friendly bow;
"So sorry, this my garden now."

Ogden Nash,The Japanese (1938)

DESERT FOX , May 18, 2018 at 12:38 pm GMT
Trump is a puppet of the Zionists who are the controllers of every facet of the U.S. gov and these warmongers want the America people kept in a world of continual hysteria and war to further the Zionist goal of a NWO.

The zionist warmongers created the wars in the mideast by Israels attack on 911 and blaming it on the muslims in Afghanistan and Iraq and thus started the bombing and invasion of these countries and then the zionists included Syria and followed their plan of regime change in 7 countries , all for the greater Israeli goal and their NWO goal.

If anyone doubts that Israel and their zionist dual citizens control the U.S. gov , just remember they did 911 and got away with it.

EliteCommInc. , May 18, 2018 at 12:49 pm GMT
Assuming all of this isn't merely "drama queening" for the nobel prize gambit. And I have my suspicions that it is.

An article that posits as major contention a Nobel peace prize for this president is not going to taken seriously by me.

As for the joint exercises -- and the President's ignorance, that's a very hard sell. No sale at all. At this juncture that President Moon Jae-in did not put a halt of a postponement on the matter leaves his decision making in doubt. Certainly there are those in S. Korea and the US who prefer to maintain the status quo. But neither President Trump nor President Moon get to cry foul play by their subordinates on this question.

A nobel peace prize -- good grief.

bob sykes , May 18, 2018 at 12:50 pm GMT
@Anonymous

This would work if the Russians and Chinese made their security guarantees visible by putting some token ground forces in the DMZ.

EliteCommInc. , May 18, 2018 at 12:53 pm GMT
The US has shrifted North Korea before on the question of disarmament.

This all smells like Kabuki theater of sorts. My subordinates made me do it in this case does not wok for me. -- laugh. Given the lean on the use of force, I suspect that the admin wanted to make a show of force to the point and if I buy any this -- it backfired.

Z-man , May 18, 2018 at 1:00 pm GMT
Yeah the Deep State. Isn't it ridiculous, even Trumps own advisers are sidetracking him. Trump and the Chinese president should make a grand bargain . Denuclearize Korea, help them unify make a 100 mile wide demilitarized zone against the Chinese border and reduce and keep US forces well south of the current DMZ or get them out completely. Let the Koreans, mostly the South pay, for the unification.
Seamus Padraig , May 18, 2018 at 1:13 pm GMT
@Anon

N. Korea directly stated that Libya was the reason for them developing nukes, so Bolton knew how the comments would be taken.

Really? But didn't the Norks proliferate back in the mid-1990s, years before Khaddaffi cut his disarmament deal with Washington?

Seamus Padraig , May 18, 2018 at 1:20 pm GMT

Think about it: Trump gets the nukes and the Nobel Prize while Kim gets a lousy piece of paper with Washington's guarantees for security. That's a great deal for Trump but not a very good deal for Kim.

I'm sure there's something missing from your formula, Mike. In order for this deal to make sense from a N. Korean perspective, they would have to have been extended security guarantees by China, Russia, or perhaps both. Washington's promises aren't worth jack. Go ask Iran. Hell, go ask Libya.

Otherwise, spot on!

anon [217] Disclaimer , May 18, 2018 at 2:03 pm GMT
Bolton is doing his job, being the neocon mouthpiece. His bosses figured out that in order for NK to denuke, the US might have to demilitarize in S.Korea altogether, while China will reap the benefit of modernizing NK. Neocons need to constraint China as much as possible. They do not accept a multi-polar world.

Trump again shows himself as the weak minded fool controlled by neocons. He is blaming China for this fall out, instead of his own generals for staging the unnecessary military exercises and John Bolton for his maniacal zeal to create trouble the world over.

Mike P , May 18, 2018 at 2:04 pm GMT
@Sean

China who will use Trump's desire for a foreign policy success to weaken the trade agreement so China can continue deindustrialising Ameraica and the rest of the West.

Any kind of trade agreement can be reneged upon at any time; so, extorting concessions on trade cannot be a long-term strategy. China isn't "deindustrialising Ameraica and the rest of the West" – the West is doing it all to itself; and it doesn't really affect all Western countries: the industry in South Korea, Germany, and Taiwan is humming along just fine. Within Europe for example the common currency has done much more damage in this regard than the Chinese.

It is clear that China doesn't see trade with the U.S. as the foundation of future prosperity, but instead focuses on trade with everyone else , particularly in Eurasia and Africa; kind of like a reverse Monroe doctrine. As part of that strategy, they want to push the U.S. out of Korea, and they are probably quite prepared to cut their losses if the Americans choose to respond by severing financial and trade relations. It is very clear that the U.S. are unable and unwilling to engage in honest dealings with anyone anyway.

Mike P , May 18, 2018 at 2:07 pm GMT
@bob sykes

This would work if the Russians and Chinese made their security guarantees visible by putting some token ground forces in the DMZ.

The U.S. MIC would be in raptures if that happened. Overnight, the military budget would double again.

Mike P , May 18, 2018 at 2:14 pm GMT
@Seamus Padraig

In order for this deal to make sense from a N. Korean perspective, they would have to have been extended security guarantees by China, Russia, or perhaps both. Washington's promises aren't worth jack.

Precisely, and they likely already have obtained those guarantees (whatever they may be worth). The North Koreans (in coordination with China and Russia) are trying to trade their nukes for a complete U.S. withdrawal from South Korea.

Anonymous [392] Disclaimer , May 18, 2018 at 2:15 pm GMT
@Cold N. Holefield

So what. Better his countrymen profit than the guy holding a gun to your head.

Name me a country that doesn't practice cronyism. You cant. So your objection is a moot point.

c matt , May 18, 2018 at 2:20 pm GMT
convince Kim that it was pointless to trust Washington.

Because Iraq, Syria, Libya, Iran, and just about everything else the US has done was not enough. If anyone is stupid enough to trust Washington, they deserve what's coming to them.

c matt , May 18, 2018 at 2:23 pm GMT
basic security guarantees

Hahahahahaha – used toilet paper would be more valuable than the paper any US "basic security guarantee" was written on.

anonymous [478] Disclaimer , May 18, 2018 at 2:35 pm GMT
It's possible that Kim's own military might force him to pull out of this de-nuke proposal. They'd be giving up their one major deterrent in return for promises of riches which may never be delivered. Their fears of being double-crossed are grounded in reality. Also, a Korea that's unified may not be desired by other countries. It might become too much of a regional power and want to ease the US out. The calculation may be that it's best to continue to see it divided and at loggerheads with each other. What's good for the Koreans may not be considered good for other interested parties.
AnonFromTN , May 18, 2018 at 2:50 pm GMT
The biggest obstacle Trump will face is non-trustworthiness of the US. One agreement with the NK was already reached more than 10 years ago, and the US pulled out of it under Bush Jr. Now the US pulled out of the Iran deal. Basically, the US consistently demonstrates that it is useless to come to any agreements with it, as it cannot be trusted to abide by them. That's yet another example that no enemy did as much damage to the US as its own governments (all of them).
jacques sheete , May 18, 2018 at 3:29 pm GMT
@Cold N. Holefield

They're ALL Bad Guys.

Yup.

Ol' Ben commented to the effect that scum floats to the top in politics and bad government. He should have added that "bad government" is a redundancy, since all of them are all bad too.

jack daniels , May 18, 2018 at 3:41 pm GMT
The best guarantee of security, of course, is to have a nuclear deterrent. A US promise not to attack would be a poor substitute. America's main concern is that NK not sell arms to Iran or Syria, thereby menacing Israel. If Kim formally agrees to that, maybe we can make a deal. It's largely up to China, since we don't want to fight them in order to get rid of Kim.

Bolton's role may well be to scare Kim. He's pretty scary.

jack daniels , May 18, 2018 at 3:56 pm GMT
@Sean

In general the bad guys are telling Trump to bargain away the MAGA agenda in return for traditional Republican goals, e.g. tax cuts for the rich and anything that is good for Israel, such as an NK that can't sell WMD to Iran. Since Trump is all too willing to go along. The RINOs and the Big Donors always win because money talks louder than votes, or that's the way professional politicians insist on looking at it.

YourBunnyWrote , May 18, 2018 at 4:12 pm GMT
Zerohedge is reporting the B-52s have been withdrawn from the exercise.

https://www.zerohedge.com/news/2018-05-18/us-scrapped-b-52-military-drill-south-korea-after-kim-jong-un-complained

mike k , May 18, 2018 at 4:15 pm GMT
Beautifully done Mike W! Your writing is so clear and compact. The question remains as to how far the US will go to stop the peace and prosperity process from unfolding in Korea? Are the neocons crazy enough to attack N. Korea? We can only stay tuned
Sean , May 18, 2018 at 4:57 pm GMT
@Mike P

Any kind of trade agreement can be reneged upon at any time; so, extorting concessions on trade cannot be a long-term strategy.

North Korea has been using its on/off nuke program to trick the US into concessions for decades now. Trump is just the latest.

https://moneyweek.com/kim-jong-un-north-korea-wavers-over-nuclear-talks/

"Welcome, President Trump, to the infuriating, indecipherable game of North Korean nuclear diplomacy," says CNN's Stephen Collinson. An "unexpected series of threats" has "threatened to nix next month's planned summit in Singapore between Trump and North Korea's leader Kim Jong-un". Kim lashed out at US-South Korea military drills, cancelled a high-level meeting with South Korean officials, and warned that there was "little point" in the US summit if the White House was going to require its nuclear arsenal to be dismantled "up front".

Korean diplomacy is underrated As Mearshimer says, following the treaty of "Kang-wah (February 1876), which opened three Korean ports to Japan . Neither Japan nor Russia was able to gain the upper hand in Korea, mainly because Korean policymakers skillfully played the two great powers off against each other ". Eventually the Russia-Japan war resulted and you could make an argument that WW1 (and even 2) stemmed from the Russian deterrent being removed from the international equation in 1905.

China proved to the US it would not stand for North Korea being crushed, and the US would not dare test that again. In 2000, China openly threatened the US mainland with a nuclear strike in any war over Taiwan declaring independence.

China isn't "deindustrialising Ameraica and the rest of the West" – the West is doing it all to itself; and it doesn't really affect all Western countries: the industry in South Korea, Germany, and Taiwan

China is deindustrialising the West , and Germany is deindustrialsing Europe while being deindustrialize itself by China . The only difference is that the process started later in Germany and there is more resistance. The EU single market is a barrier to non EU trade and is about creating a Germany dominated area. the capital goods China uses are bought from Germany in a great many cases.

South Korea, Taiwan and Japan are happy to have the North Korean nuke menace ,

https://www.unz.com/efingleton/north-korea-why-trump-should-kims-feet-to-the-fire/

North Korean nuclear distraction has long had unwelcome ramifications way beyond military policy. Repeatedly since the Clinton era, it has cramped Washington's style on international trade, for instance. And trade, of course, is absolutely central to the new administration's program.

It is fair to say that all the more important East Asian nations have a vested interest in exaggerating the North Korean threat. The more terrifying North Korea is made to appear, the more desperately Washington will seek out advice and help from China, Japan, and South Korea. That tends to ensure that trade talks with these mercantilist nations are consigned to the backburner.

Moreover at times of tension, Pentagon officials inevitably take charge. As the East Asians have gleefully realized for generations, the Pentagon is a remarkably soft touch on trade, and in return for the merest hortatory support for its military objectives will pull the rug from under the most carefully conceived plans drawn up elsewhere in Washington to get East Asia to open up.,/b>

The business class of the West love the returns they get in China, they are not going to switch to investing in the West, but rather will wait out the era of Trump, whereupon the investing in China will resume apace. It won't be possible to slow the growth of China down and so America will be eclipsed. The military won't be much use then, because China will have bigger and better toys.

Per/Norway , May 18, 2018 at 5:12 pm GMT
@Carlton Meyer

informative, thnx:)

EliteCommInc. , May 18, 2018 at 5:15 pm GMT
Thee is a logical hole in the article that I was going to leave alone -- but as yet no one else noted it, I will.

The article pushes some press for a nobel peace prize *that really bugs me -- I voted and have defended this president, even being called a moral reprobate and utterly unchristian in doing so.

Despite the press for this so called prize. The author never states what the president contributed to the peace process the than the president's contend of "massive pressure." But in this the article athe cleanly indicates no such pressure had any effect. If the pressure failed, I am unclear why thee is any talk at all about nobel awards.

This president has done one monumental shift in our North Korean policy -- open and direct talks including both heads of state and staff. While long over due and laudable -- one of the jobs of the white house is manage policy to our advantage that taps down on the use of force. It doesn't take a genius IQ to figure out direct talks is a key step in that process. And as such requires no special recognition. I took a look at why President Roosevelt received a novel peace prize -- and if that is the model neither Presidents on the this or the previous administration should be so honored.

If they have removed the bombers, it's a double fault. The response should have been.

We conducted these exercises routinely as preparation for the unfortunate worst case scenario. And while we are disappointed our routine has been misinterpreted -- It is our intention to proceed forward in peace negotiations.

deception fo deception's sake is a foul practice.

Sean , May 18, 2018 at 5:21 pm GMT
@jack daniels

North Korea's sudden nuclear and ICBM twin leap is a function of how useful China finds it to have Trump asking them for help. North Korea does nothing on its own account.

The smart money wants to be in China that is where the big returns are, so business is waiting out Trump. Subordinating the well being of the nation's population to profit is called economic rationality. The alternative is called fascism. Trump does not have the popular support to go against economic rationality.

AnonFromTN , May 18, 2018 at 5:31 pm GMT
@Sean

Toys don't win wars, people do. In Afghanistan, the US and NATO troops with all their fancy toys are scared to stick their noses out of the bases, whereas Taliban with medieval mindset and automatic rifles roam the country freely.

Mike P , May 18, 2018 at 5:39 pm GMT

China is deindustrialising the West The business class of the West love the returns they get in China, they are not going to switch to investing in the West

So whose fault is it – China's, or the Western capitalists? Pick one.

Germany is deindustrialsing Europe while being deindustrialized itself by China. The EU single market is a barrier to non EU trade and is about creating a Germany dominated area. the capital goods China uses are bought from Germany in a great many cases.

The EU common market as such wasn't a problem; as long as each European country had its own currency that was allowed to float, the trade imbalance problem was mitigated. It was the Euro, which was foisted on Germany by the French as a price for their consent to German reunification, that caused the trade imbalances within Europe to explode.

But with or without the Euro, Germany's manufacturing sector will survive and thrive. China's labour cost advantage over Germany will vanish, just like Japan's did. Just wait and see.

republic , May 18, 2018 at 5:46 pm GMT
@Anon

Bolton's remarks sound like an updated version of the Melian dialogue
When Athens gave Melos an ultimatum during the Peloponnesian War.

Sean , May 18, 2018 at 6:44 pm GMT
@AnonFromTN

Cannon fodder wins wars. The first born tend to be cleverer and less likely to fight because they get and inherit the best of everything (including first place in the womb).. There are a lot of big families in Afghanistan. Many young men of the burgeoning population are second sons and are thus reckless. The Taliban roam and die freely, but there are a lot of them growing up and stepping into the place of the dead,.

JVC , May 18, 2018 at 6:48 pm GMT
the Trump/Kim meeting was not instituted by the USG. China, Russia, and SK have all been in negotiation with Kim, and they all realize that the USG word is essentially worthless. I suspect Kim has agreed with his neighbors to de-nuclearize in return for some robust security agreements along with the opening of trade in the region. The U.S. will need to think hard and long about doing anything to disrupt what is essentially a regional policy shift. I think Trump has been invited along on the ride just to stroke his and the USG's sense of self importance. The world is changing, and the future lies in the east. Unfortunately, too many of those behind the curtain controlling USG foreign policy are too blinded by their arrogance and hubris to realize that, and instead of welcoming a peaceful multi-centered world, will continue on their chosen path of aggression, demands and sanctions until we become the isolated one.
EliteCommInc. , May 18, 2018 at 7:12 pm GMT
@JVC

Since President Moon Jae-in has been working in this matte with North Korea for more than twenty yeas, I find it hard to believe he intends to allow an opportunity to slip by based on training routine exercises.

Sean , May 18, 2018 at 7:43 pm GMT
@Mike P

China's, or the Western capitalists?

Trump was elected to punish both, so a lot of Americans apparently blame both.

The EU common market as such wasn't a problem; as long as each European country had its own currency that was allowed to float, the trade imbalance problem was mitigated.

At the cost of throwing people out a job, which only worked when people knew things would eventually get better. Things are not going to get better for the lower orders of West, they are good and getting better for the financial elite and China.

But with or without the Euro, Germany's manufacturing sector will survive and thrive. China's labour cost advantage over Germany will vanish, just like Japan's did. Just wait and see .

China is 10 times larger than Japan, hence the economies of scale are probably going to become more salient than labour costs (there is a new factory complex in China making laptops that has a bigger workforce than the British Army). German business are going to do well out of China's rise. American business have no objection to China making everything and America being supreme in financial services. Unfortunately the country would become weaker than China while a substantial part of the population became increasingly disgusted with their lot in life (in real terms worse of than their parents). The majority ethnic population and state institutions must object to a policy that creates ever increasing numbers of unemployed and ignores state power for the profit of a minority. Therefore the people (there a lot of them) and the deep state are diverging from the business community–increasingly seen as an fifth column with interest in destroying the country as a nation-state. But nation states are a thing with emergent properties not found in their parts. Hence untrammeled capitalism with money sloshing around the world wrecking states and the people who make up nations is a fundamentally unstable system that leads to ethnic nationalism and militarism. The deep nation-state is nothing you can put your finger on. but at bay it will turn on the business elite and try to wrest control from them.

Art , May 18, 2018 at 7:45 pm GMT
@Anon

Meanwhile, neocons like William Krystal say "we need to be willing to walk away from negotiations." That's what they are hoping for.

Sorry but the Jew's trash talking days are over. There is NO there there!

The Jew is losing his power. Truth is starting to gain strength. The world's attitude is turning away from Jew coercion, through their control of the US government.

Jew power is a function of US government power. And US power is losing out, all around the world.

Trump's overbearing, tuff talking sing-song, is losing its steam. Bolton's big mouth has complicated the NKorea nuke deal. He illustrates to the world, the dishonesty of the US foreign policy under Jew control.

The Israeli embassy deal was a total embarrassment. Innocent blood was flowing as Jarrad and Ivanka were speaking their hollow words. Gaza innocence won the day.

Europe is fighting to preserve the Iran nuke deal. They are passing laws to protect their businesses from US sanctions. China and Russia are stepping up with deals to counter Trump's Jew favoring sanctions.

Jew led America is getting no respect.

Think Peace -- Do No Harm -- Maintain Hope -- Art

AnonFromTN , May 18, 2018 at 8:39 pm GMT
@JVC

The world does not revolve around the US any more. The US elites still did not realize that – they degenerated too much after 1991. However, some of the US vassals are even more deluded than the US elites. Grown up Europeans (like Germany, France, and even the UK) are learning, judging by their refusal to follow the US lead on the Iranian deal, which is totally illegal from the point of view of the international law (when there was one, before it was repeatedly trampled by the US). But the pathetic inconsequential poodles, like Poland, Ukraine, and Baltic vaudeville states, refuse to learn. More fools them.

Anonymous [400] Disclaimer , May 18, 2018 at 10:06 pm GMT
@Sean

China is deindustrialising the West , and Germany is deindustrialsing Europe while being deindustrialize itself by China . The only difference is that the process started later in Germany and there is more resistance. The EU single market is a barrier to non EU trade and is about creating a Germany dominated area. the capital goods China uses are bought from Germany in a great many cases.

How is China deindustrializing Germany if the EU is a barrier to non EU trade? You don't see many US, Japanese, or Chinese goods in Europe.

Realist , May 18, 2018 at 10:10 pm GMT

Trump's objectives are completely clear. He wants to win the Nobel Prize and he wants to be recognized as a foreign policy genius

Trumps chances of being recognized as any kind of genius by intelligent people are slim and none.

That's not the deal. That's never been the deal. No one on the North Korean side ever said that Washington was going to get something for nothing. And it's not going to happen either. Kim is looking for a tradeoff, a decommissioning of his nuclear weapons in exchange for basic security guarantees. That's the deal.

If Kim has any intelligence at all he will demand full denuclearization of the Korean peninsula (South Korea has had US nuclear weapons stationed there for decades) and removal of all US military personnel and material.
US guarantees are worthless.

Anonymous [400] Disclaimer , May 18, 2018 at 10:32 pm GMT
@Sean

North Korea's demands are pretty clear: a formal end to the Korean War and a peace treaty with the US, and the removal of the US military from the Korean peninsula.

These demands are supported by China and many South Koreans. They're opposed by Japan and some South Korean conservatives. I don't think your notion that China, North Korea, South Korea, and Japan are all aligned on the North Korea issue is true.

If the US wanted to satisfy most of the parties here, and satisfy the isolationists and anti-foreign policy adventurers that supported Trump, then obviously the US would agree to North Korea's demands. This would also, by the way, satisfy Russia. You would only upset Japan and some South Korean hardliners.

So why doesn't the US make a deal that agrees to NK's demands, satisfies most of the parties involved and many Trump supporters and Americans? Clearly Trump, being an astute negotiator and businessman with an instinct for what people like and is popular, is inclined towards such a deal. Obviously what's holding the US back from such a deal are American foreign policy hawks and the deep state, who want to maintain the US military presence globally.

Rabbit , May 18, 2018 at 10:43 pm GMT
Kim's laughing his ass off. Americans are so stoopid. What makes anyone think NK will go out of it's way to get along with the US? Why would they? Kim's doing just fine and he has Trump as jester to amuse him. I'm sure he's enjoying the hell out of this.
Trump's fans really thought he had the Nobel sewed up. That's really funny. What's funnier is they think he's helping them.
All of these morons ripe for milking. I should have become a preacher and had an easy, rich life.
EliteCommInc. , May 18, 2018 at 11:24 pm GMT
"If the US wanted to satisfy most of the parties here, and satisfy the isolationists and anti-foreign policy adventurers that supported Trump, then obviously the US would agree to North Korea's demands. This would also, by the way, satisfy Russia. You would only upset Japan and some South Korean hardliners."

As someone who supports this admin and the agenda that was advanced during the campaign, you description is fa afield from why I voted. I am not an isolationist, though the county could use some minding its own affairs for a time. Nor was my vote premised on being anti-foreign policy. In fact, I have never head of anyone being anti-foreign policy. A policy less reliant on the use of force as its main thrust was and is the issue.
,

ohmy , May 19, 2018 at 12:10 am GMT
@MEFOBILLS

How to get the banksters out of their position. It seems they have printed enough cash to buy everyone. Top to bottom.

[May 18, 2018] A Trump Doctrine for Singapore and Beyond by Pat Buchanan

Trump acts as a bully. That might work in some cases, but probably not in NK case...
Notable quotes:
"... North Korea wants a step-by-step approach, each concession by Pyongyang to be met by a U.S. concession. And Bolton sitting beside Trump, and across the table from Kim Jong Un in Shanghai, may be inhibiting. ..."
"... If we expected Kim to commit at Singapore to Bolton's demand for "complete, verifiable and irreversible denuclearization," and a swift follow-through, we were deluding ourselves. ..."
May 18, 2018 | www.unz.com

After Pyongyang railed this week that the U.S.-South Korean Max Thunder military drills were a rehearsal for an invasion of the North, and imperiled the Singapore summit, the Pentagon dialed them back. The B-52 exercises alongside F-22 stealth fighters were canceled. But Pyongyang had other objections.

Sunday, NSC adviser John Bolton spoke of a "Libyan model" for the North's disarmament, referring to Moammar Gadhafi's surrender of all his weapons of mass destruction in 2004. The U.S. was invited into Libya to pick them up and cart them off, whereupon sanctions were lifted.

As Libya was subsequently attacked by NATO and Gadhafi lynched, North Korea denounced Bolton and all this talk of the "Libyan model" of unilateral disarmament.

North Korea wants a step-by-step approach, each concession by Pyongyang to be met by a U.S. concession. And Bolton sitting beside Trump, and across the table from Kim Jong Un in Shanghai, may be inhibiting.

What was predictable and predicted has come to pass.

If we expected Kim to commit at Singapore to Bolton's demand for "complete, verifiable and irreversible denuclearization," and a swift follow-through, we were deluding ourselves.

At Singapore, both sides will have demands, and both will have to offer concessions, if there is to be a deal.

What does Kim Jong Un want?

An end to U.S. and South Korean military exercises and sanctions on the North, trade and investment, U.S. recognition of his regime, a peace treaty, and the eventual removal of U.S. bases and troops.

He is likely to offer an end to the testing of nuclear weapons and long-range missiles, no transfer of nuclear weapons or strategic missiles to third powers, a drawdown of troops on the DMZ, and the opening of North Korea's borders to trade and travel.

As for his nuclear weapons and the facilities to produce them, these are Kim's crown jewels. These brought him to the attention of the world and the Americans to the table. These are why President Trump is flying 10,000 miles to meet and talk with him.

And, unlike Gadhafi, Kim is not going to give them up.

Assuming the summit comes off June 12, this is the reality Trump will face in Singapore: a North Korea willing to halt the testing of nukes and ICBMs and to engage diplomatically and economically.

As for having Americans come into his country, pick up his nuclear weapons, remove them and begin intrusive inspections to ensure he has neither nuclear bombs nor the means to produce, deliver or hide them, that would be tantamount to a surrender by Kim.

Trump is not going to get that. And if he adopts a Bolton policy of "all or nothing," he is likely to get nothing at all.

Yet, thanks to Trump's threats and refusal to accept a "frozen conflict" on the Korean peninsula, the makings of a real deal are present, if Trump does not make the perfect the enemy of the good.

For there is nothing North Korea is likely to demand that cannot be granted, as long as the security of South Korea is assured to the degree that it can be assured, while living alongside a nuclear-armed North.

Hence, when Kim cavils or balks in Singapore, as he almost surely will, at any demand for a pre-emptive surrender of his nuclear arsenal, Trump should have a fallback position.

If we cannot have everything we want, what can we live with?

Moreover, while we are running a risk today, an intransigent North Korea that walks out would be running a risk as well.

ORDER IT NOW

A collapse in talks between Kim and the United States and Kim and South Korea would raise the possibility that he and his Chinese patrons could face an East Asia Cold War where South Korea and Japan also have acquired nuclear weapons and the means to deliver them.

In the last analysis, the United States should be willing to accept both the concessions to the North that the South is willing to make and the risks from the North that the South is willing to take.

For, ultimately, they are the one who are going to have to live on the same peninsula with Kim and his nukes.

Trump ran on a foreign policy that may fairly be described as a Trump Doctrine: In the post-post-Cold War era, the United States will start looking out for America first.

This does not mean isolationism or the abandonment of our allies. It does mean a review and reassessment of all the guarantees we have issued to go to war on behalf of other countries, and the eventual transfer of responsibility for the defense of our friends over to our friends.

In the future, the U.S. will stop futilely imploring allies to do more for their own defense and will begin telling them that their defense is primarily their own responsibility. Our allies must cease to be our dependents.

Patrick J. Buchanan is the author of a new book, "Nixon's White House Wars: The Battles That Made and Broke a President and Divided America Forever."

Copyright 2018 Creators.com.

[May 16, 2018] Time changes: Professor Shephen Cohen became more popular among readers of unz.com

May 16, 2018 | www.unz.com

Dan Hayes , May 15, 2018 at 5:28 am GMT

n that Cohen tries to stay clear of anything outside his expertise, Russian history and geopolitics. Several times I've heard him fondly reminisce about being raised in Kentucky. So he may not be a complete Upper West Side liberal.

[May 16, 2018] Anthrax scare as a way to enrich private contractors

May 16, 2018 | www.unz.com

ChuckOrloski , May 15, 2018 at 5:24 pm GMT

@Mr. Anon

Writing objectively, Mr. Anon noted: "Being a pizza deliveryman is probably more dangerous than most every military MOS."

Hi Mr. Anon,

Thanks for your satiric-service including recognition of often brave pizza deliverymen!

I have a true work experience to share.

In late-Autumn, 2001, as a dual-Business Manager & Emergency Spill Response Supervisor for Pa. E.M.A. Haz-Mat Certified Teem Environmental, Inc., one afternoon, the excitable company-owner called a mandatory meeting for all personnel.

Addressing supervisors & (very skilled) Field Technicians, the rather timid owner ordered, "Starting today & through the weekend, TEEM is contracted to perform potential sarin gas terror attack responses within NYC subways & tunnels! So everybody better keep their pagers on when you go home & be immediately prepared to respond to sarin gas attacks!"

A dear friend & late-coworker, Warren Hill, became uncomfortable with the assignment and sensibly spoke up, "Uh, what the fuck? Do we get extra military pay for dealing with the crazy Taliban while we ain't armed with nothin' but V.O.C. & Hnu meters, Personal Protection Equipment?"

Unused to having to deal with reasonable employee-challenges, the TEEM owner lost it, screamed, What's wrong with you, Warren?!! Can't you read the advertisement painted on our E.R.V., "TEEM Environmental responds to all incidents involving US D.O.T. Hazardous Materials! Get on the ball, would 'ya, Warren!"

Upon reflection, I stuck neck-out, came to Warren's aid, and opined, "But the Haz-Mat customers who have signed our company 'Emergency Spill Response Agreements' are not known to pose secondary-life threatening hazards after initial accidental discharges happened."

"Bah , Just keep your pager on, Chuck!" replied our civilian Commander Stassi.

P.S.: For anyone interested, attached below is my "wordy" 2015 article that delivers an example of how civilian private-company employees fought in the War Against (White Powder) Anthrax terror threats.

Cases where the "perp(S)" never caught, an open case, and to this day, I suppose either Federal or State governments cut lots-of-checks, payable to private Emergency Spill Response companie$, for their services.

https://www.countercurrents.org/orloski250415.htm

[May 16, 2018] Reasons Trump Breaks Nuclear-Sanction Agreement with Iran, Declares Trade War with China, and Meets with North Korea by James Petras

Questionable but interesting. "Trump's "policy" is simply a reflection of his character as a narcissistic, arrogant bully. To "make America great again" means for him "make America the Global Bully" again." Trump really believe like a typical bully. In case of tough resistance he folds and appologize. Otherwise he tries to press opooneent into complete submission.
Notable quotes:
"... The underlying assumption of Trump's strategic thinking is that 'power works': the more intransigent his posture, the greater his belief in a unipolar world based on US power. As a corollary, Trump interprets any ally, adversary, competitor who seeks negotiations, reciprocity or concessions is 'weak' and should be pressured or forced to concede greater concessions and further retreats and sacrifices, up to the ultimate goal of surrender and submission. ..."
"... Trump views President Rohani as a rug seller not a military strategist. Trump believes that an economic squeeze will lead President Rohani to sacrifice his allies in Syria, Lebanon (Hezbollah), Yemen (Houthi), Palestine (Hamas) and Iraq (Shia)and to dismantle its ICBM defense strategy. ..."
"... Trump pursues the strategic goal of weakening Iran and preparing a regime change, reverting Iran into a client state – as it was prior to the 1979 revolution under the Shah. ..."
"... Trump recognizes and submits to Zionist-Israeli dictates because they have unprecedented power in the media, real estate, finance and insurance (FIRE). Trump recognizes the ZPC's power to buy Congressional votes, control both political parties and secure appointments in the executive branch. ..."
"... Trump is the typical authoritarian: at the throat of the weak, citizens, allies and adversaries and on his knees before the powerful ZPC, the military and Wall Street. ..."
"... Trump's unilateral declaration of a trade war against China accompanied his belief that military threats led to North Korea's "capitulation" – its promise to end its nuclear program. ..."
"... Is Trump playing the Nixon-Kissinger 'madman' tactic, in which the Secretary of State tells adversaries to accept his 'reasonable' demands or face the worst from the President? I don't think so. ..."
"... China got Trumps to waiver ZTE ruling, with Huawei declared no longer a threat to US security. ..."
"... "Speaking to soon-to-be graduates of the Virginia Military Institute on Wednesday, Tillerson dropped this truth bomb: "If our leaders seek to conceal the truth, or we as people become accepting of alternative realities that are no longer grounded in facts, then we as American citizens are on a pathway to relinquishing our freedom." Woof. ..."
May 14, 2018 | www.unz.com

Introduction

For some time, critics of President Trump's policies have attributed them to a mental disorder; uncontrolled manic-depression, narcissus bullying and other pathologies. The question of Trump's mental health raises a deeper question: why do his pathologies take a specific political direction? Moreover, Trump's decisions have a political history and background, and follow from a logic and belief in the reason and logic of imperial power.

We will examine the reason why Trump has embraced three strategic decisions which have world-historic consequences, namely: Trump's reneging the nuclear accord with Iran ;Trump's declaration of a trade war with China; and Trump's meeting with North Korea.

In brief we will explore the political reasons for his decisions; what he expects to gain; and what is his game plan if he fails to secure his expected outcome and his adversaries take reprisals.

Trump's Strategic Framework

The underlying assumption of Trump's strategic thinking is that 'power works': the more intransigent his posture, the greater his belief in a unipolar world based on US power. As a corollary, Trump interprets any ally, adversary, competitor who seeks negotiations, reciprocity or concessions is 'weak' and should be pressured or forced to concede greater concessions and further retreats and sacrifices, up to the ultimate goal of surrender and submission. In other words, Trump's politics of force only recognizes counter-force: limitations in Trump's policies will only result when tangible economic and military losses and costs in US lives would undermine US imperial rule.

Reasons Why Trump Broke the Peace Accord with Iran

Trump broke the accord with Iran because the original agreement was based on retaining US sanctions against Iran; the total dismantling of its nuclear program and calling into question Iran's limited role on behalf of possible allies in the Middle East.

Iran's one-sided concessions; trading military defense for market opportunities encouraged Trump to believe that he could intimidate Iran militarily by closing all its markets.

Trump views President Rohani as a rug seller not a military strategist. Trump believes that an economic squeeze will lead President Rohani to sacrifice his allies in Syria, Lebanon (Hezbollah), Yemen (Houthi), Palestine (Hamas) and Iraq (Shia)and to dismantle its ICBM defense strategy.

Trump pursues the strategic goal of weakening Iran and preparing a regime change, reverting Iran into a client state – as it was prior to the 1979 revolution under the Shah.

The second reason for Trump's policy is to strengthen Israel's military power in the Middle East. The Trump regime is deeply influenced by the Zionist power configuration (ZPC) in the US, dubbed 'the Lobby'.

Trump recognizes and submits to Zionist-Israeli dictates because they have unprecedented power in the media, real estate, finance and insurance (FIRE). Trump recognizes the ZPC's power to buy Congressional votes, control both political parties and secure appointments in the executive branch.

Trump is the typical authoritarian: at the throat of the weak, citizens, allies and adversaries and on his knees before the powerful ZPC, the military and Wall Street. Trump's submission to Zionist power reinforces and even dictates his decision to break the peace accord with Iran and his willingness to pressure. France, Germany, the UK and Russia to sacrifice billion-dollar trade agreements with Iran and to pursue a policy of pressuring Teheran to accept part of Trump's agenda of unilateral disarmament and isolation. Trump believes he can force the EU multi-nationals to disobey their governments and abide by sanctions.

Reasons for Trump's Trade War with China

Prior to Trump's presidency, especially under President Obama, the US launched a trade war and 'military pivot' to China. Obama proposed the Trans-Pacific Pact to exclude China and directed an air and naval armada to the South China Sea. Obama established a high-powered surveillance system in South Korea and supported war exercises on North Korea's border. Trump's policy deepened and radicalized Obama's policies.

Trump extended Obama's bellicose policy toward North Korea, demanding the de-nuclearization of its defense program. President Kim of North Korea and President Moon of South Korea reached an agreement to open negotiations toward a peace accord ending nearly 60 years of hostility.

However, President Trump joined the conversation on the presumption that North Korea's peace overtures were due to his threats of war and intimidation. He insisted that any peace settlement and end of economic sanctions would only be achieved by unilateral nuclear disarmament, the maintenance of US forces on the peninsula and supervision by US approved inspectors.

Trump's unilateral declaration of a trade war against China accompanied his belief that military threats led to North Korea's "capitulation" – its promise to end its nuclear program.

Trump slapped a trade tariff on over $100 billion dollars of Chinese exports in order to reduce its trade imbalance by $200 billion over two years. He demanded China unilaterally end industrial 'espionage', technological 'theft' (all phony accusations) and China's compliance monitored quarterly by the US. Trump demanded that China not retaliate with tariffs or restrictions or face bigger sanctions. Trump threatened to respond to any reciprocal tariff by Beijing, with greater tariffs, and restrictions on Chinese goods and services.

Trump's goals seek to convert North Korea into a military satellite encroaching on China's northern border; and a trade war that drives China into an economic crisis. Trump believes that as China declines as a world economic power, the US will grow and dominate the Asian and world economy.

Trump believes a successful trade war will lead to a successful military war. Trump believes that a submissive China, based on its isolation from the 'dynamic' US market, will enhance Washington's quest for uncontested world domination.

Trump's Ten Erroneous Thesis

Trump's political agenda is deeply flawed! Breaking the nuclear agreement and imposing harsh sanctions has isolated Trump from his European and Asian allies. His military intervention will inflame a regional war that would destroy the Saudi oil fields. He will force Iran to pursue a nuclear shield against US-Israeli aggression and lead to a prolonged, costly and ultimately losing war.

Trump's policies will unify all Iranians, liberals and nationalist, and undermine US collaborators. The entire Muslim world will unify forces and carry the conflict throughout Asia, Africa and the Middle East, Tel Aviv's bombing [of Iran] will lead to counter-attacks in Israel.

Oil prices will skyrocket, financial markets will collapse, industries will go bankrupt.

Trump's sanctions and military aggression against Iran will lead to mutual economic destruction.

Trump's trade war with China will lead to the disruption of the supply chain which sustains the US economy and especially the 500 US multi-nationals who depend on the Chinese economy for exports to the US. China will increase domestic consumption, diversify its markets and trading partners and reinforce its military alliance with Russia. China has greater resilience and capacity to overcome short-term disruption and regain its dominant role as a global economic power house.

Wall Street will suffer a catastrophic financial collapse and send the US into a world depression.

Trump's negotiations with North Korea will go nowhere as long as he demands unilateral nuclear disarmament, US military control over the peninsula and political isolation from China.

Kim will insist on the end of sanctions, and a mutual defense treaty with China. Kim will offer to end nuclear testing but not nuclear weapons. After Trump's reneged on the Iran deal, Kim will recognize that agreements with the US are not trustworthy.

Conclusion

Trump's loud, threatening gestures are a real danger to world peace and justice. But his assumptions about the consequences of his policy are deeply flawed. There is no basis to think his sanctions will topple the Iranian regime; that Israel will survive unscathed from a war with Iran: that an oil war will not undermine the US economy; that Europe will allow its companies to be frozen out of the Iran market.

Trump's trade war with China is dead in the water. He cannot find alternative production sites for US multi-nationals. He cannot freeze China out of the world market, since they have links with five continents. Trump cannot dominate North Korea and force it to sacrifice its sovereignty on the basis of empty economic promises to lift sanctions. Trump is heading for defeats on all counts. But he may take the American people into the nuclear abyss in the process.

Epilogue

Are Trump's threats of war part of a strategy of bluff and bombast designed to intimidate, in order to secure political advantages? Is Trump playing the Nixon-Kissinger 'madman' tactic, in which the Secretary of State tells adversaries to accept his 'reasonable' demands or face the worst from the President? I don't think so.

Nixon unlike Trump was not led by the nose by Israel. Nixon unlike Trump was not led by pro-nuclear war advisers. Nixon in contrast to Trump opened the US to trade with China and signed nuclear reduction agreements with Russia. Nixon successfully promoted peaceful co-existence.

Trump is a master of defeats.


Realist , May 15, 2018 at 9:00 am GMT

Reasons Trump Breaks Nuclear-Sanction Agreement with Iran, Declares Trade War with China, and Meets with North Korea

The Deep State told him to.

Gordo , May 15, 2018 at 12:06 pm GMT

industrial 'espionage', technological 'theft' (all phony accusations)

Of course they do this, they would be stupid if they didn't.

Realist , May 15, 2018 at 7:52 pm GMT

Trump's political agenda is deeply flawed!

Trump has no agenda of his own.

Per/Norway , May 15, 2018 at 10:42 pm GMT
"Trump's sanctions and military aggression against Iran will lead to mutual economic destruction."

indeed they will, and sadly it well deserved after the last 20yrs off US terrorism.
the US hubris will soon meet karma, and we all know karma is a bitch..

Biff , May 16, 2018 at 5:18 am GMT

Tel Aviv's bombing will lead to counter-attacks in Israel.

?Who is going to do this bombing, and counter attacking?

Mark James , May 16, 2018 at 5:58 am GMT

Trump cannot dominate North Korea

You didn't have to be genius to see this coming. In fact, NK played Trump as expected. Anything else would have been gross negligence by their diplomatic negotiators. Getting Trump to speculate about a prospective Nobel (for himself) for bringing nuclear peace to the Pacific was baiting the hook nicely.

The US is now dealing from a position of weakness. Let's see what NK can extract in terms of keeping their weapons and gaining economic assistance in return for getting the meetings back on track.

jilles dykstra , May 16, 2018 at 7:02 am GMT
This theory is the opposite of what I suppose is the right explanation, the explanation also given by prof Laslo Maracs, UVA Amsterdam, that Trump and his rich friends understand that the USA can to longer control the world, conquering the rest of the world totally out of the question.

The end of the British empire began before 1914, when the twe fleet standard had to lowered to one fleet.

Obama had to do something similar, the USA capability of fighting two wars at the time was lowered to one and half. What half a war accomplishes we see in Syria.

In the thirties the British, some of them, knew quite well they could no longer defend their empire, at the time this meant controlling the Meditarranean and the Far East. Lawrence R. Pratt, 'East of Malta, West of Suez', London, 1975

The British guarantees to Poland and countries bordering on the Med lighted the fuse to the powder keg that had been standing for a long time. Churchill won, the British thought, and some of them think it still, WWII. But shortly after WWII some British understood 'we won the war, but lost the peace'.

I still have the idea that Trump has no intention of losing the peace, but time will tell.

jilles dykstra , May 16, 2018 at 7:06 am GMT
@Per/Norway

I suppose Trump just is buying time against Deep State and Netanyahu. The fool Netanyahu is happy with having got Jerusalem, he does not see the cost in increased hatred among Muslims, and Israel having won the Eurovision Song Festival.

jacques sheete , May 16, 2018 at 7:52 am GMT

Trump's loud, threatening gestures are a real danger to world peace and justice.

Just as Wilson and FDR's, and their successor's regime change efforts were. At least they're consistent! Damn them all.

Franklin Ryckaert , May 16, 2018 at 9:59 am GMT
Trump's "policy" is simply a reflection of his character as a narcissistic, arrogant bully. To "make America great again" means for him "make America the Global Bully" again. However, behind the facade of all his bravado hides a puppet of the Jewish Power Structure, which is even more dangerous than Trump himself. "Make Zion Great Again" would be a more apposite slogan.
The Alarmist , May 16, 2018 at 10:16 am GMT
Wall Street collapsing will not cause a world depression, but will reflect the very real depression that will arise from huge disruptions to the US supply chain and energy costs and the knock-on effect that will have on the global economy.

A strike on Iran won't by itself be enough to cripple the US economy, but the loss of a single aircraft carrier might be enough of a pull on a thread that unravels the magical mantle of military force that currently holds the empire together and keeps the vassal-states in line to cause things to go pear-shaped quickly.

Proud_Srbin , May 16, 2018 at 10:30 am GMT
Nobody can accuse Donald of not being obedient executioner of tasks given by his Masters.
You don't have to be dark skinned to reside in Masters quarters, orange haired and white is ok too..
Kirt , May 16, 2018 at 10:59 am GMT
Overall a good analysis, but as far as his support of Israel is concerned, his family connections with the most ultra-Zionist factions should not be overlooked.
Escher , May 16, 2018 at 11:30 am GMT

Trump believes that as China declines as a world economic power, the US will grow and dominate the Asian and world economy.

On what basis does the author say that? Trump is smart enough to know that China is growing as an economic and military power, not declining. A fairly poorly (and likely hastily) written article.

Mike P , May 16, 2018 at 11:53 am GMT
@jilles dykstra

Buying time to do what? How do you think that time will work in his favour?

DESERT FOX , May 16, 2018 at 12:30 pm GMT
Trump is under the control of Zionists just as is the U.S. gov with Zionist dual citizens in control of every facet and has been since 1913 when the Zionists created the FED and the IRS.

Trump is like the Roman emperor Caligula and is a Trojan Horse for the Zionist agenda of a NWO and is continuing the tradition of the U.S. gov breaking its word about everything, just ask the native American Indians.

JoaoAlfaiate , May 16, 2018 at 1:05 pm GMT
You haven't convinced me he isn't a psychopath.
Quartermaster , May 16, 2018 at 1:11 pm GMT
The nuke agreement with Iran was a sham. Iran lied about what they were doing. The agreement had never been submitted to the Senate and so was never ratified. Our "allies" in Europe and Asia knew that and their reaction has not been nearly as negative as the author of this column has claimed.
Joe Hide , May 16, 2018 at 1:12 pm GMT
I continue to admire President Donald Trump, Vladimir Putin, and Xi of China. WHY? .because RESULTS matter more than opinions on internet websites, T.V., or in printed publications.

N. Korea has stopped performing ICBM or nuke tests, a less extremist regime change "coup" took place in Saudi Arabia, financing/ weapons flows / intelligence to Syrian terrorists has dried up with resulting collapse of ISIS, Iran is threatening to release the names of European & American politicians who previously made millions / billions off the Iran nuke deal if it is dropped, Harvey Weinstein, Allison Mack, and "Weiner" were untouchable before Trump, the list just goes on and continues to get bigger.

A major reason for admiration of Putin is that the Mainstream Media (MSM) can't stop demonizing him. So of course I'm logically led to believe that he is mostly a good guy since the MSM has proven itself repeatedly to distort the Truth. Putin also largely ended the oligarchs power, doubled Russian citizens income, used an tiny Russian military in Syria to gradually reverse ISIS expansion there, improved Russia's internal manufacturing, agricultural, mining, and technological research/ development, intellectually crushed international debate opponents repeated using only logic and facts (You should watch the videos!), built / rebuilt over 10 thousand churches, has patriotic Muslims (Crimea) fighting for Russia in Syria, etc. etc.

Xi of China has pretty impressive creditials but this post is overly long anyway. RESULTS COUNT MORE THAN WORDS!

TT , May 16, 2018 at 2:58 pm GMT
@Gordo

Of course they do this, they would be stupid if they didn't.

• Agree: CalDre

I like your frankness. Every countries is into this at different degree, with ZUS the apex. But been leading in most tech area currently & lazy to produce any useful things, ZUS is very unhappy that their esponage net result is negative, hence the continuous whining.

When tide reverse with China leading in most tech, ZUS will complaint about complex patent system as been flawed in exploitating & suppressing of weaker country innovation, juz as it did for WTO & Globalization now.

Of course any moronic comments about only China is espionaging US IPR & rise purely due to US FDI & Tech transfer will resonate CalDre into high chime.

padre , May 16, 2018 at 3:03 pm GMT
Well, he is not meeting with North Korea either, since Kim didn't chicken out, and is not that stupid as to offer his head on the plate! Bolton made sure of that.
TT , May 16, 2018 at 4:10 pm GMT
Hastily written article cobbled by bits of public info here & there without deep analysis.

1. Today NK declared they have indefinitely terminate all high level exchange with SK. If Trumps insisted on another Libya & Iraq defank & ending model advocate by Bolton, meeting with Trumps will be cancelled. Trumps needs the Korea peace credit to get his Nobel Prize, so as to booster his coming Nov election win. Kim has baited Trumps to put him in tight corner now, hence WH still insisting to go ahead prepare for the meeting.

If venue does changed to Beijing from Trumps' choice of Spore (Kim's cargo plane can't fly his limousine so far, also a risk of him as Spore is US vassal), we will see Kim has K.O. Trumps in another round. Kim will get to keep its nuke weapon until USM remove its Korea present, clear all sanctions, with UNSC guaranteed its safety. If Trumps has the meeting cancelled, then China can roll out its own play book as unchallenged leader in solving Korea crisis. Either way, Trumps will lost influence to China.

2. Trade war with China has exposed ZUS deep weakness in its brinkmanship when china retaliated with no compromise. Four most senior trade & treasury secs scrambled 10,000 miles to Beijing to seek detente, but return empty handed in 2 days with their ridiculous demands in hubris. Still China got Trumps to waiver ZTE ruling, with Huawei declared no longer a threat to US security.

Btw, this author has wrongly written about the $100B trade tariff, its only $50B so far. Another additional $100B is only a empty threat ZUS dare not release to avoid China retaliation.

3. JCPOA cancelling is godsend move. First, EU with Germany & France having huge investments in Iran is crying loud that they have to be free from been ZUS vassal. If they caved in to ZUS sanction threat, then EU bosses – Macron & Merkel will face revolt from Europe business sector. China & Russia will be happy to pick up whatever investments in fire sales.

If EU decided to rebel & chart its own destiny with a little spine, then ZUS has lost its tight clutch over EU. EU has juz announced to trade Iran oil in Euro, hasten de-dollarization. The geopolitical game is changing tide. In either way of EU decision, China & Russia win.

Now Iran will continue to enjoy free trades with everyone except ZUS that it dislike most, & win moral high ground in international standing by keeping to JCPOA.

ZUS has juz ordered Trumps to shoot its own foot. It pay the high price of losing every credibility in international agreement, forced EU into seeking independency, have EU trade in Euro, with Iran, China & Russia all smiling.

jacques sheete , May 16, 2018 at 5:06 pm GMT
@Anonymous

Yes, but there is much more to your observation..

Of course, but I just wanted to make a point not write a book or even a PhD thesis. thanks for the supplementary material though. Your comments about oil are spot on as you know. The wars were about smashing some real competition.

Herald , May 16, 2018 at 5:18 pm GMT
@Quartermaster

Please try and be serious, that sort of nonsense just won't do.

Vidi , May 16, 2018 at 8:06 pm GMT
@Quartermaster

Somebody has to shovel the BS occasionally, to keep the smell down here. I guess it's my turn today, sigh.

The nuke agreement with Iran was a sham. Iran lied about what they were doing.

Then the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) and many of the major European countries must also be lying when they say that Iran is fully complying with the JCPOA.

The agreement had never been submitted to the Senate and so was never ratified.

The United Nations Security Council endorsed the JCPOA; see UNSC resolution 2231. According to the UN treaty, UNSC resolutions are automatically the law of the land, even in the USA -- no Senate ratification needed.

jacques sheete , May 16, 2018 at 8:08 pm GMT
@Quartermaster

Iran lied about what they were doing.

Citation, please.

Have you ever made a comment that was other than your mere and clearly biased opinion? Try it sometime; it would be interesting to see what evidence you provide to support such transparently erroneous ideas.

dkshaw , May 16, 2018 at 9:31 pm GMT
@The Alarmist

Anyone who destroys a carrier is sure to face a nuclear attack, and nuclear war will ensue.

niteranger , May 16, 2018 at 9:33 pm GMT
Trump's only strategy is to do what Israel orders him to do. The Neocon Jews and their friends including the Jew In Chief of the White House Jared Kushner are running the show. You can easily see this in ... Niki Haley's presentation before the UN including walking out before the Palestinian Rep had a chance to speak.

Trump is up to his arms in shady deals with Jewish financiers of his properties and they will get what they want from him politically. It's Israel against the world and the US is nothing more than their war whore. More people will die for this strategy that comes from formerly Tel Aviv and now from the Magic Jewish Capital called Jerusalem.

renfro , May 16, 2018 at 11:25 pm GMT
Stars -- They're Just Like Us: Celebs outraged over Gaza are speaking out
US Politics Mondoweiss Editors on May 16, 2018

http://mondoweiss.net/

Some other examples:

New York City's Hip Hop station Hot 97's morning show, "Ebro in the Morning," dedicated an entire segment to yesterday's demonstration in Gaza where the two blasted Israel and President Donald Trump http://pic.twitter.com/43XIqhKFWZ

-- Gigi Hadid (@GiGiHadid) May 15, 2018
Hadid posted screen shots of Al Jazeera's coverage alongside an image of the Nakba with text written by a relative, "Almost One Million Palestinians were violently forced out of their country and never allowed back to Palestine. The Hadid family was amongst them and they fled in fear to Syria where they became refugees."

Why are these important? Because they have millions of followers on social media .because their audience and followers are the coming voter and leadership force .for better or worse ..and for Israel its the 'worse'. Gigi Hadid for instance has 9 million followers on twitter.

renfro , May 17, 2018 at 12:52 am GMT

Giuliani: Mueller's team told Trump's lawyers they can't indict a president

This true. BUT ..'if' any criminal wrong doing by Trump before he was president is revealed in the course of the Russia investigation he can be indicted for that after he is out of office. IN ADDITION ..'if' any criminal wrong doing is revealed in Trump's businesses then any persons involved in it within his businesses including his sons or daughter can be indicted. And now, as they have no presidential protection.

imo .this is what Trump is most afraid of ..some criminal business like money laundering being exposed. not that Mueller will find Russian election collusion.

renfro , May 17, 2018 at 12:57 am GMT
Rex Tillerson just majorly trolled Donald Trump

https://www.cnn.com/2018/05/16/politics/tillerson-trump-truth/

"Speaking to soon-to-be graduates of the Virginia Military Institute on Wednesday, Tillerson dropped this truth bomb: "If our leaders seek to conceal the truth, or we as people become accepting of alternative realities that are no longer grounded in facts, then we as American citizens are on a pathway to relinquishing our freedom." Woof.
..

Why is this important? Because the graduating class of VMI selects its speakers so that tells you where the minds of the elite military schools are on Trumpism.

[May 15, 2018] Bureaucrats Versus Artists by W. Patrick Lang

Notable quotes:
"... In fact, "Intelligence" is simply another word for "information" and in ages gone by the term was used in that way by authorities like Clausewitz or Jomini. ..."
"... Like any labor of scholarship involving the study of human beings by human beings, the work is nearly always conducted with incomplete and ambiguous information as a basis for the analysis. ..."
May 10, 2018 | www.unz.com

"Were we right or were we wrong?" This was Director of Central Intelligence (DCI) George Tenet's central question in his 2004 talk to the faculty and students of his alma mater, Georgetown University. What he was talking about, of course, was the critical political issue of whether or not the Intelligence Community (IC) of which he was the titular head "got it right" in telling the American people and their government that Iraq was a clear danger to the United States, as opposed to being a threat to regional states, and if that danger was substantial enough to serve as a justifiable basis for war, invasion and occupation. In Tenet's address there was much of self-protection and an implicit warning that neither he nor the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) would accept to be "scapegoated" in a search for the roots of misadventure in Iraq. His words establish a claim to blamelessness for the CIA and the larger Intelligence Community in the decisions leading up to the Iraq campaign and a related claim to have done as well as could fairly have been expected. In other words, he wished to be thought innocent in this matter. Is that reasonable? Is it fair to expect American citizens and officials to believe that the Intelligence Community did its work well in helping the government of the United States to make sound decisions about Iraq? This is an important question, because if they did not, then why were their judgments so flawed in spite of the incredible amounts of taxpayer money lavished on the agencies of the IC? Why should so much money have been lavished on these agencies if they could do no better?

In spite of the importance of this question, impatience with the performance of the intelligence people ought to be somewhat dependent on the outcome of a national debate as to what should be expected of the process labeled "intelligence." Reporters sometimes ask rhetorically if decisions should really be made on the basis of intelligence. At first hearing questions like this seem to be both naïve and nonsensical since it is obvious that information is the stuff that decisions must be founded on. Nevertheless, decipherment of these statements leads to an understanding that those who say things like this think that "intelligence" is a form of thinking both esoteric and obscure, a dark art, separate and distinct from the normal way of knowing things and subject to acceptance or rejection by special rules of perception. In other words, they think that it is something like astrology, to be judged by its own "rules."

In fact, "Intelligence" is simply another word for "information" and in ages gone by the term was used in that way by authorities like Clausewitz or Jomini. There is nothing mystical or mysterious about the process by which information or "intelligence" is collected, collated, analyzed and disseminated. "Intelligence" is scholarship conducted in the service of the state. The great bulk of the information used as data in this scholarship comes out of the huge archival files of the major agencies supplemented by daily "feedings" of; diplomatic chit-chat, aerial and satellite reconnaissance, intercepts of communications and hopefully the products of espionage (clandestine HUMINT). Like any labor of scholarship involving the study of human beings by human beings, the work is nearly always conducted with incomplete and ambiguous information as a basis for the analysis.

This natural phenomenon is aggravated by the desire of the studied group to hide something, usually, that which is under study. When George Tenet said before his Georgetown audience that "We never get things altogether right in the Intelligence business, nor altogether wrong," he was correct but his statement was irrelevant to a discussion of the utility of the intelligence process since the quality of the analytic product depends on many variables, among them; good information and the quality of the minds brought to bear on the imperfect information. It is both trite and a truism that "intelligence is an art and not a science." What this means is that human beings may succeed or they may fail in making judgments based on less than complete data and that the skill, intelligence and experience of those involved is the most important factor in determining the outcome. To say that "Intelligence" is a flawed process is simply meaningless in a discussion of the effectiveness of the state in making decisions. If the "Intelligence Community" as it now exists were abolished, some other group would have to assume the burden of performing the same functions for the benefit of the state. What would they be called? Perhaps it might be, "The Agency for Special Planning?"

The issue of the effectiveness and efficiency of the existing Intelligence Community is a separate but linked question from that of knowing whether or not the elected or appointed officials of the Bush Administration may have intruded themselves inappropriately into the deliberations of the Intelligence Community in a way that led to distortions in the estimates of Iraq's significance that were presented to the president and the Congress. It is widely believed now that this occurred but that is not the subject of this essay.

The question under examination here is simple. Premise: "The Intelligence Community produced poor quality intelligence on Iraq." Therefore, one asks – Are there imbedded structural defects in the present United States Intelligence Community that contributed either directly or indirectly to the production of estimates that were unsound and which failed the nation? And, moreover, are there characteristics in the present intelligence community of the United States which now prevent and will prevent it from "reforming" itself? It is clear that the inability of the Intelligence Community to forecast or estimate Iraq's true condition was a major failure. Why did this happen, and how can the defects in the "community" be repaired? What "limits" are there in the psychology and structure of the government that may prevent "repair" of the system?

ORDER IT NOW

The author's conclusion after a working lifetime of studying the flaws in the system from within the community and from the evidence of continuing contacts with old colleagues and new friends in the intelligence agencies is that there are a multitude of problems in the intelligence forces of the United states and that most of them have grown up over a very long time, are now "built into" the system and are unlikely to be resolved without outside intervention by the Congress of the United States. It is impossible to consider them all but a few of the most important are so intractable as to be worth discussing here:

-Leadership. There is a natural tendency in the general public to believe that the upper levels of the Intelligence Community are filled with learned, avuncular and sensitive people somehow reminiscent of "George Smiley," the wonderful British spy and spymaster whose presence fills the earlier novels of John Le Carre. The character, "Smiley" is wise, sadly pessimistic, a profound student of mankind and devoted to his "people." He has a deeply empathic nature, is widely read, speaks several languages and is so dedicated to his craft and its ethic that he fears nothing and will take any risk either to protect his own "people" or to "launch" operations that, if they fail may destroy him. What a marvelous conception this man is!

There are people like that in the leadership of US Intelligence. There are a few, but there once were many more and they are fewer all the time. In fact, the "system" works in such a way that people like "Smiley" are feared and distrusted by the bureaucratic politicians who really run the intelligence agencies. What are really to be found in the upper echelons of the "community" are either people who early in their government service became specialized in the generalized management of organizations (often after early substantive analytic work) or others who were "staff " of some kind, (budgetary planners, lawyers. liaison staff, etc.) The Directors of the various agencies are naturally attracted to such people because they are focused on the administrative functions of the agencies and the protection of their ultimate superior, the Director. This makes them a kind of "insurance policy " for the directors of the agencies.

The old veterans of the intelligence trade often make a distinction between "real intelligence officers" and "managers." "Real intelligence officers" are those who are known to be qualified and capable of the difficult work of analysis and field collection of information and who are known to have the moral character required to stand up to the pressure that is present in every political administration to make the "reality" presented by the "Intelligence Community" conform to the " reality" envisioned by the policy of the administration in power. The "managers" are essentially courtiers grouped about the throne of whichever baron of the Intelligence Community they may serve. The "managers" functions center on liaison with the other barons, lobbying the Congress for money and "protection" of the boss (the Director of their agency). Such people as the "managers" are easily recognized by the directors of the agencies as very valuable to their career survival in the stylized "dance" conducted around Washington by the various parts of the United States Government but they are not well suited to leading "real intelligence officers" to feats of brilliant analysis or imaginative collection operations because they are always in a "defensive crouch" fearing that the "real intelligence officers" will cause trouble for them or "the boss" through disagreement with the "picture" desired by the administration of the day or in Human Intelligence (HUMINT) operations (espionage) gone bad which result in publicity that could be damaging to the "managers'" careers. Incredibly, these are the people who tend to be promoted to "line" command "at the top" in the collection, and analytic functions of the agencies over the heads of the "real intelligence officers."

This pattern of rule by the "managerial" class is now so well established in the intelligence agencies that it is simply expected that senior jobs which control large parts of the agencies in the analytic and HUMINT collection fields will be held by "managers" as opposed to "real intelligence officers." This tendency is so firmly rooted now that the author has often heard very senior "real intelligence officers" described as "just an analyst," or "just an operator" in the context of a selection board picking someone for a high level leadership job in the very field in which the "real intelligence officer" is an authority respected throughout the government.

This tendency is perpetuated and reinforced by a process of "mirror-imaging" in personnel selections in which the ever-growing number of "managers" who are in senior leadership position simply select others like them in the next generation for the top jobs. This results in a leadership cadre in the Intelligence Community which is more and more hostile to the risks demanded as the price of real success in collection and analysis and more and more favorable to the self indulgence of a focus on the "turf battles and budget wars" endemic to Washington and at the same time less and less driven by the desire to do good intelligence work. The personnel management disaster described above is ultimately the responsibility of the directors of the agencies that make up the Intelligence Community. If they wanted to have a different focus in their agencies, there would be a different focus. There have been many fine and devoted heads of the various American intelligence agencies, but all too often the directors themselves are members of the "managerial class" within the Intelligence Community or simply politically selected party functionaries. All too often directors see themselves as "travelers" on a journey to yet further heights within the government and therefore not "decisively committed" to the work of their people. For many directors, the "managerial class" within their agencies is a natural ally in controlling the "wilder impulses" of the "real intelligence officers" in the organization.

ORDER IT NOW

-Risk Aversion. One of the most trite and tedious of the many things said in the national media and in the U.S. Congress about the failures of the Intelligence Community in Iraq and with regard to so many issues is that "HUMINT (espionage in this context) must be improved!" Repetition of this thought has become obligatory in any "serious" discussion of security issues but in fact, no one has done much to improve US espionage capabilities. This would be amusing in its inanity if the underlying phenomenon were not so serious. In fact, the media and the Congress are largely responsible for creating the operating environment in which the wreck of once formidable American espionage capabilities became inevitable. In the aftermath of the Vietnam War, the public and its representatives convinced themselves that the intelligence services were somehow the enemies of the American people. The FBI COINTELPRO program aimed at Director Hoover's personal list of enemies and the Nixon Administration's meditations (the Houston Plan) on the possibility of effectively combining all U.S. counterintelligence groups into one force contributed to that idea. The Houston Plan was never approved or implemented but the concept itself was enough to "trigger" demand for congressional investigations into the "misdeeds" of U.S. counterintelligence groups.

Rather inevitably the "witch hunt" spread to include U.S. clandestine intelligence. The "Church Committee" in the US Senate resulted. Up until that time it was generally believed in the population of the United States that the intelligence services were filled with honorable people trying to protect the country, but the spirit of that age disagreed and a barrage of "literature" and films spread the idea that career intelligence officers were amoral opportunists animated by a kind of nihilistic sadism. "The Three Days of the Condor," "The Bourne Identity," and similar rubbish which portrayed a universe unfamiliar to anyone who had ever worked in intelligence filled people's heads with the idea that the clandestine services were to be tolerated but only just barely tolerated and that they must be closely watched and restricted. American espionage capabilities began to decline from that time and the process has not yet been reversed.

A mass of regulations were enacted in those and following years which tied the hands of the clandestine services so effectively that they have never recovered. Several categories of people were placed "off limits" as possibilities for recruitment as foreign agents (for example, reporters, professors, employees of American companies) without regard for the fact that these very people have inherent access to people and information often needed to carry out effective intelligence work. The rationale seemed to be that some kinds of people needed to be "protected" from the "dirty" business of espionage. The same kind of "thinking" has caused the clandestine services to rely far too much on "liaison" relationships with foreign intelligence services as a substitute for conducting American run espionage against difficult targets. The reason? Disclosure of foreign operations does not entail the career risk for the "managers" that the failure of an American operation would bring.

The creation of this kind of operating environment served as a powerful "enabling" mechanism for the not so gradual assumption of power in the intelligence agencies by the "managerial class." In an atmosphere dominated by fear of violation of legislated restrictions on behavior and the use of clandestine funds, it was only natural that the directors of the agencies would look to those who had little interest in driving forward the limits of accomplishment and every interest in "limiting the damage" and "preventing surprises" for themselves and "the boss." This has resulted in a degree of control over operations by lawyers and financial officers that is suffocating to the ability of skilled operatives to mount the kind of potentially rewarding but risky operations that would be needed, for example, to penetrate "Al-Qa'ida." Clandestine operations are inherently dangerous. It follows that if they are evaluated by people who "know the cost of everything but the value of nothing," they will inevitably be disapproved before execution if the risks are considerable. Those in Congress who wrote the rules used as excuses to disapprove these operations will then "bleat" pitifully about the need for "better HUMINT" the next time a disaster occurs.

Analysis by Committee. Much the same phenomena exist on the analytic "side" of the intelligence business. Brilliant people from the best schools "sign up" for a career in intelligence work from a sense of patriotism, intellectual curiosity, and a desire to "make a difference" in the world. What typically happens to them after that is that they are "eaten alive" by bureaucracies utterly controlled by the "managerial" mentality. Young analysts are called on to write papers that demand a fresh look, hard work and an undying devotion to the truth. The draft papers they write are not their property and these papers should not be subject to the vanities of "pride of authorship" so common in other works of scholarship, but neither should they be treated with a lack of respect for the views of the analysts and the creativity that the authors bring to the task. Too often, the "editing by committee" system that prevails results in papers that are not only irrelevant to the security needs of the nation but are actually misleading because of their lack of intellectual honesty.

In the "managerial" world, nothing matters so much as "staying in step" with the consensus in the various agencies of the intelligence world as well as making sure that analysis does not deny the political leadership of the country an intellectual "platform" from which they can proclaim their vision of the future. The "mere" belief of the analysts counts for little in the judgment of the "managers" when weighed against the career destroying effect of disapproval or disfavor from on high.

As a result analysis is "ironed out" in a "layer cake" system of committees at ever-higher layers of bureaucracy. These committees are made up of supervisors at the appropriate layer and they "take care" to insure that the interests of the various parties within an agency are protected in the text that goes forward to the next higher layer and that untoward results are avoided. When this process is ended, what is typically produced is a stereotypical example of the "lowest common denominator," not something on which the country should "hang its hat" in making decisions affecting the national fate, and certainly. Such papers are inevitably reflective of the kind of "group think" that grows up in any highly integrated and hierarchical bureaucracy that controls the career long expectations of its inhabitants. In other words, an individual analyst has no chance whatever of having his or her views expressed at the national level unless a large and self-serving group of careerists approve them and find them not to be threatening to their collective view of what serves the group's perceived best interest in terms of its relations with the rest of the intelligence community and the sitting government.

ORDER IT NOW

The rule of the "managerial class" in the intelligence community ensures the permanence of this "system." The ruling group will reproduce itself through "mirror imaging" ad infinitum and will be maintained in position through the perceived self-interest of the kind of people who typically become directors of the major intelligence agencies. This is not to say that there have not been brave, courageous and creative directors of the major intelligence agencies. The author has had the honor of serving under several. It was a pleasure and they know who they are, but the sad truth, known to all who have served for extended periods in intelligence is that most directors are part of the problem. The truth is that intelligence is an art best practiced by gifted eccentrics, people widely and deeply educated, favored by nature and training with intuition beyond the average and who care more for the truth than anything else. Such people consistently will follow their "nose" and their instincts on a trail of information like bloodhounds until they arrive at a truth that matters to the people of the United States. In the espionage field of endeavor, the function of managers is to be "enablers," to make workable the environment in which gifted case officers can break through the manifold barriers that will enable the penetration of groups that threaten the lives of our people. What must be avoided is the selection of managers who instinctively feel that their function is to "hold back" the operators and analysts in order to preserve "peace" within the bureaucracy.

Domination of the Intelligence Function by the Executive Branch: All the intelligence agencies are parts of the Executive Branch. The CIA is a separate organization within the Executive Branch and directly subordinated to the president. The Defense Intelligence Agency is part of the Defense Department as is the National Security Agency. The State Department Bureau of Intelligence and Research (INR) is obviously part of that department. All these groups are deeply imbedded within these "ministries" of government in a constitutional system which ensures that the authority of the political party that controls the white House will control the intelligence agencies as well. This means that the temptation that will always be presented to politicians to attempt to shape" both information collection and the analysis of that information to their taste is likely to be overwhelming.

In most American administrations, the most senior authorities (generally elected) are wise enough to know that without sound and objective judgments from the intelligence agencies, the information upon which they base decisions is worthless. The reason one creates separate information gathering and analysis systems under the rubric of "intelligence" is that there is an inherent "conflict of interest" in any system that allows policy decision makers to be the same people who judge what the reality is upon which such decisions are based. Decision makers can always choose to decide policy questions based on their own view of the world, but it is intuitively obvious that this is not the best way to insure good decisions. For this reasons the most senior authorities generally restrain their subordinates on the policy side of government and prevent excessive interference with the process of judging information.

The danger is that the wisdom of that attitude is not universally appreciated and in some government past, present or future, policy officials may choose to drive the intelligence people supporting their deliberations towards judgments unsupported by convincing and dependable evidence. If one doubts the seriousness of the possible consequences of such a "cattle drive" one need only consider such historical examples of misadventure as the US strategic obsession with the likelihood of a Japanese first strike on the Philippines in 1941. This led the US Government to focus attention of its analytic force in that direction so firmly that Japanese preparations for an attack in Hawaii were completely missed. Another example would be the obsession with the "inevitability" of victory that influenced intelligence to "miss" completely enemy preparations for the Tet Offensive of 1968 in spite of the mass of information available that indicated something really "big" on the way. In both cases the results of policy or strategic thinking having been allowed to "intrude" on analysis were simply catastrophic. Strong leadership by "real intelligence officers" can help to prevent such disasters. The "dissent" taken by the State Department in the October 2002 NIE on Iraq may well have been an example of the survival of such leadership.

How can this be prevented? This problem exists across the world in every country where serious foreign policy and military issues must be considered and decisions on policy and strategy made on the basis of a systematic consideration of available data. In every country there is the problem of trying to insure that the judgments of the information or intelligence people are untainted by external pressures. There have been various methods and structures adopted to deal with this danger to the national security. In some places external "think tanks" are used to "test" the result of internal analysis. In others countries, reliance is placed on the competitive analysis of two or more intelligence agencies, often one military and the other civilian.

In Israel, within the Directorate of Military Intelligence there exists something called the "Devil's Advocate" a name borrowed from the process of canonization within the Catholic Church in which a cleric is appointed to oppose the sainthood of one who has been presented for consideration for that honor. In the Israeli "Devil's Advocate" section, the officers so employed have the job of opposing the analysis accepted by the government and of preventing the acceptance of institutional "group think" as the basis for decisions. For the senior Israeli officers who serve in the "Devil's Advocate" section it is understood that opposition to the judgments of the rest of the intelligence community will have a career price and that the officers who do this work should look forward to a fruitful life in retirement from the army soon after their service in this job. Nevertheless, they perform a vital; perhaps "priceless" is not too strong a word, service for their country. None of these devices seem altogether suitable for the United States as a "safeguard" against overwhelming pressure to bring their analysis into conformity with policy. The sheer scale of the institutions involved in American life dictate modification of the methods used in smaller governments. Some approach that combines the better features of these institutional "fixes" would probably be appropriate.

Can the "Intelligence Community" change itself to eliminate the problems discussed above?

It cannot.

The United States "Intelligence Community" is a "mature bureaucracy," a group of institutions that have reached a stable equilibrium in their internal politics and in their relationships


Heros , May 10, 2018 at 7:09 am GMT

I guess Lang is talking about what he refers to as the "Borg". His biggest problem is that he is one of them, as this long disinformation article shows.

How can you even pretend there were "intelligence failures" after these guys murdered the Kennedy's and pulled off the 9/11 new Pearl Harbor.

As usual, Lang is just laying a smoke screen for his war criminal Masonic brothers.

jilles dykstra , May 10, 2018 at 7:11 am GMT
Of course Iran is a danger to the USA.
In 1953 there was the CIA coup, that ended democratic Iran, and brought the USA puppet shah in power.
In 1979 Muslim clerics had the audacity to send the puppet away, and put themselves in power.
Since then they, with success, resisted the USA yoke.
Right now Assad is a danger to the USA, he's still alive, and, with help of Russia, and some help of Erdogan, in power.
Both regimes undermine USA prestige in the world.
Randal , May 10, 2018 at 9:12 am GMT
Fascinating stuff, thanks. One of the best articles I've read on Unz, in fact, and that's saying quite a lot because there's been a lot of great stuff here over the past few years.
anonymous [340] Disclaimer , May 10, 2018 at 10:11 am GMT
Mr. Lang hasn't appreciated my pending questions about his first two columns here at Unz Review, but I have a couple more, one substantive, the other editorial.

1. What does Mr. Lang specifically advocate, if anything?

He urges Congress to revamp a bureaucracy. But he says that when Congress addressed that bureaucracy in the mid-1970s as part of the post-Vietnam "'witch hunt'" it "tied the hands of the clandestine services so effectively that they have never recovered." (He seems to see himself as one of those so bound. But that's not made clear in the context of anything between 1968 (Tet) and the circa 2002 warmongering against Iraq.)

So if a Congressman during a hearing were to ask Mr. Lang how his work had been hampered before he retired, and for his specific recommendations going forward, what would he say?

2. What's "up" with the needless quotation marks?

Sceptical , May 10, 2018 at 10:23 am GMT
This is an interesting critique of the current state of the intelligence community. The author's contention that the system has devolved into a bureaucratic muddle under the thrall of the executive branch seems accurate but:

The disregard for the Church Committee and pining for the days of the gifted operator being free from pesky managerial control seems misplaced. I know most Americans have a limited sense of history and memory but, for example, look at the blowback from the Mossadegh coup, the bad intelligence we received from Gehlen about the Soviets, MK ULTRA, Robert Parry's revelation that members of the intelligence community interfered with Carter's attempt to negotiate the release of the hostages held by the mullahs. There are many more such examples. I am not so sure that the "good ol days" were that great. Also, is it even true that the Executive branch is in control(does the tail wag the dog)?

divadab , May 10, 2018 at 10:58 am GMT
Interesting analysis – apparently reflecting imperial institutions bureaucratized to the point of calcification, like an alzheimers brain. I wonder if by extension the senior ranks of the military in general have become inhabited by risk-averse careerists? Can this explain at least partly its lack of success in warmaking since Vietnam?
xxxyyyzzzttt , May 10, 2018 at 12:03 pm GMT
Lang is what we draft soldiers use to call "Lifers"; people who define their life by their love of guns and bombs etc. Reading him daily over the years brings to mind Kissinger's denigration of military men's intelligence or Hitler's comment that Generals don't understand economics. Not intelligence in the sense of IQ ( I have learned a lot from him; smarter than me no doubt). Rather intelligence in the sense of not being able to see reality through the lens of their love of shoot 'em up bang bang.
For example, he really would have us believe that there is something wrong with "Intelligence". They make mistakes. Not the reality that they provide the rational for the wars he is so proud to have been a part of. He is proud of his killing deeds in Vietnam, which was largely the result of what: failed intelligence in the Gulf of Tonkin? He is proud of the role he played in the killing Kaddafi's baby daughter. Was this the result of failed intelligence about terrorism? Come on Pat your are like the Robert Duval character in Apocalypse Now who "loved the smell of Napalm in the morning." Intelligence has not failed the likes of you. It provides the rational for you to do what is you live to do – killing. You spent your adult life killing or being responsible for killing people whose only crime was to be sitting on oil.
When you were doing your killing in Vietnaum, draftees like me were saying "hell no I won't go". There was a saying at the time: "What if someone gave a war and no one showed up". If people like you would stop showing up we would not have troops stationed in 125 countries in the world today. Guys like you show up because you love the shit and you could care less about the accuracy of Intelligence. Intelligence is the opium of the people. It gives them a reason to pay people like you to act out your childhood fantasies about war.
Repectually!
art guerrilla , May 10, 2018 at 12:21 pm GMT
@Heros

@ heros-
thank you, saved me a bunch of snarking at the author
.
as for the article itself, I rarely don't finish articles and comment on them, but the sophistry is so wide and deep, it was impossible to finish
.
the author -as does the korporate/lapdog media- makes a number of presumptions which are not supported by current reality (which is -in fact- the reason for their role as gatekeepers) firstly, AS IF we had a system which makes decisions based on facts, the greatest good for the greatest number, and -you know- reality
we do not
.
what we have imposed upon us, is a PURPOSEFULLY corrupted and broken system which is used by the 1% to enforce their will all the 'fact finding', 'research', etc, etc, etc, is so much window dressing and bullshit to justify doing what they want to do and has NOTHING to do with what eggheads, pontificators, pundits, academics, etc have researched, experimented on, or theorized
.
repeat: it is ALL bullshit to make the insane decisions FOR the 1% seem like the only choice we have

Kemerd , May 10, 2018 at 12:55 pm GMT
Oh Americans! One thing about brits that I like is tbat they never hesitated talking about their empire or imperial interests. But all americans seem to have have blinkers (set by their imperial hubris or genuine belief that their country stands for the good) even supposedly intellectuals cannot escape it. Taleb calls them intellectual yet idiot, l suppose Lang is one of them.
Anonymous [196] Disclaimer , May 10, 2018 at 1:57 pm GMT
The intelligence community, while apparently giving useful tactical-level information sometimes , is now, from what I seen, just a propaganda tool. Look at the Skripal farce. The IC of the "five eyes" confirmed Russia was behind trying to kill the Skripals by smearing his door handle with nerve agent (so ludicrous it's like something out of A Fish Called Wanda ). Or Russian collusion and the Steele dossier and golden showers. Or Clapper as head of the NGA in 2003 claiming they had satellite photographic proof Saddam was moving WMD's. Or Assad's "chemical attacks on his own people". What's worse is that the IC hucksters (not IC, per se, just those pitching the wares) no longer even bother putting on an elaborate dog and pony show, show & tell, and holding vials of inert anthrax at the U.N. Pretty soon we won't even need the IC middleman, though I'm sure the six-figure contractors, who now make up the bulk of the IC, will still be collecting the big bucks for "protecting America".

What is truth?," asked an exasperated Pontus Pilate after being badgered by a certain (((group))) to take action and put a certain innocent God-man to death. Somethings never change.

utu , May 10, 2018 at 2:25 pm GMT
Totally false article.

Mr. Lang created a false dichotomy which basically is reduced to No True Scotsman fallacy written from the position of the true Scotsman. There are no true Scotsmen.

Things are much simpler. It all comes down to integrity which is a question of morality. Mr. George Slam Dunk Tenet produced what he was asked to produce. There was a war to be had and he had to do his job and show that he was a team player and he did it. This was not an issue of bad intelligence or that somebody made a mistake. If anybody had integrity there in CIA he would refuse and be ready to resign. I haven't heard of anybody resigning or being fired prior to war in 2003. The additional dimension was a fear of physical threat. Mr. George Slam Dunk Tenet had attacks of anxiety fearing that he or his family would be hit while driving around Washington DC on business or with his family. Was it because there was something wrong with Mr. Tenet psychologically or was the idea planted in his mind by somebody who had enough credibility to make Mr. Tenet believe it? If the latter it shows that in Washington DC thing are done not differently than in some third wold capitol.

G Standfast , Website May 10, 2018 at 2:40 pm GMT
From the TV adaptation of Smiley's People, spoken by George Smiley as portrayed by Alec Guinness (49:30):

In my time, Peter Guillam, I've seen Whitehall shirts go up and come down again. I've listened to all the excellent arguments for doing nothing and reaped the consequent frightful harvest. I've watched people hop up and down and call it progress. I've seen good men go to the wall and the idiots get promoted with dazzling regularity. All I'm left with is me. And the thirty odds years of Cold War without the option.

English Outsider , May 10, 2018 at 2:57 pm GMT
@Heros

Oh, SUCH nonsense. What hope is there of a sensible attempt to alter the disastrous course Western foreign policy is taking if anyone can read a stunning piece of analysis like that and come up with such a reply?

Anon [198] Disclaimer , May 10, 2018 at 3:18 pm GMT
@English Outsider

The author has a valid point regarding "groupthink" in the intelligence services but his descriptions of the alternatives don't seem to hold much water. It's not like even it its glory days American HUMINT was anywhere near up to, say, Soviet standards.

LeaNder , May 10, 2018 at 3:19 pm GMT
@art guerrilla

as for the article itself, I rarely don't finish articles and comment on them, but the sophistry is so wide and deep, it was impossible to finish

But nevertheless you feel entitled to judge an author whose article you haven't even read? At what point did you decide it was sophistry pure and simple?

WorkingClass , May 10, 2018 at 3:51 pm GMT
Blah blah blah. Then more blah blah. Why would anyo0ne read this shit. The CIA is an abomination. It should be destroyed. Glad I could help.
Linda Green , May 10, 2018 at 3:58 pm GMT
The purpose of the Iraq war was to reunite Iran and Iraq as a bulwark against Israel. The goal was achieved. The resurgent Iran we are seeing today is the fruit of the Iraq war.

Watch what is happening rather than what the talking heads are saying. And keep your friends close and enemies closer.

If you listen closely you can hear the knashing of teeth in Israel that big brother stopped re-arranging the chess pieces in the M.E. after he installed a Iran allied shia (Nouri Al-Maliki) as leader of Iraq.

Mission Accomplished!

utu , May 10, 2018 at 4:19 pm GMT
@Heros

His biggest problem is that he is one of them, as this long disinformation article shows.

Exactly!

hyperbola , May 10, 2018 at 4:33 pm GMT
The elephant in the outhouse is again kept hidden by Lang. This alone is enough to disqualify anything he says.

Israeli Spies in the US

https://www.merip.org/mer/mer138/israeli-spies-us

. Intelligence Pact
It seems that, as Blitzer contends, Washington and Tel Aviv made a deliberate effort in the mid-1950s to put an end to these covert operations against one another. Most observers assign responsibility for this to top CIA official James Angleton .. Sharing information on Arab countries may have been one example of this. Another may have been assistance in getting nuclear weapons for Israel. According to Seymour Hersh, "sources close to" Angleton told former New York Times reporter Tad Szulc that the CIA helped the Israelis obtain technical nuclear information in the late 1950s. "This fits in with something I had been told by a high-level CIA official," Seymour Hersh added in 1978, "that Angleton, then in charge of CIA liaison with Israeli intelligence, gave the Israelis similar technical information in the mid-1960s." [19] During this period, enriched uranium was vanishing from an American atomic energy company with close ties to the Israeli government. [20] ..
A similar pattern of cooperation between US and Israeli intelligence agencies exists in the area of military procurement. "Israelis were caught in the Pentagon with unauthorized documents," one US official told former Congressman Paul Findley, "sometimes scooping up the contents of 'inboxes' on desk tops." This official recalled that a number of Israelis were very quietly asked to leave the US as a result of such activities; no formal charges were ever filed against them. Several US officials told Findley that the Israelis would submit orders for military items they were not supposed to have or even to know about -- using top-secret code numbers and sometimes precise specifications. Presumably they obtained the information from friendly executive branch contacts, but no official efforts were undertaken to discover the sources of the leaks. [22] ..

art guerrilla , May 10, 2018 at 4:35 pm GMT
@LeaNder

@leander
.
1. it appears you are guilty of the 'sin' you accuse me of: my post SAID why I thought it was sophistry (as well as in agreement with heros analysis) in short, because IT DENIES OBVIOUS REALITY
the author prattles on AS IF 'intelligence'/information that is gleaned by spooks or WHOEVER, actually matters in what decisions our 1% superiors make on our 99% behalf (but NOT for our 99% benefit)
.
2. don't be such an authoritarian tool: FORGET about what the 1% SAY is what guides their decisions, etc, LOOK AT WHO BENEFITS, you scared, shorn, sheeple again, in short, as they EXPLICITLY STATED in the bulldozing run up to the eye-rack-eee war part 1, they 'fixed the intelligence' around the ALREADY MADE DECISION TO ATTACK for the greedy reasons of Empire, NOT because sad damn who's sane was our hitler-of-the-month ™
*snort*
it is difficult to take such propaganda victims as yourself seriously; you are stuck on the superficial layer of what Empire presents as 'reality', and don't see (or even GUESS) that there is a man behind the curtain pulling the levers to bedazzle you
.
bread and circuses, kampers, bread and circuses
hee hee hee
ho ho ho
ha ha ha
ak ak ak

hyperbola , May 10, 2018 at 4:43 pm GMT
@English Outsider

Pity the English. They have been slaves of a racist-supremacist, foreign sect ever since Cromwell let the sect back in the country. Time for Americans to again free themselves from the "city of london" sect.

The goy and the golem: James Angleton and the rise of Israel

http://mondoweiss.net/2017/11/golem-angleton-israel/

.. "Angleton was was a leading architect of America's strategic relationship with Israel that endures and dominates the region to this day," Jefferson Morley writes in The Ghost: The Secret Life of CIA Spymaster James Jesus Angleton. More than any other man, the longtime chief of U.S. counterintelligence made possible Israel's shift "from an embattled settler state into a strategic ally of the world's greatest superpower."

Angleton did so chiefly by burying any effort in the U.S. intelligence establishment to question Israel's acquisition of nuclear weapons in the 1960s. "Angleton's loyalty to Israel betrayed U.S. policy on an epic scale," Morley writes. "Instead of supporting U.S. nuclear security policy, he ignored it." ..

schrub , Website May 10, 2018 at 4:57 pm GMT
My first contact with CIA was while visiting the remote Mojave Airport in California in the early 1980s during a motorcycle trip to Death Valley. While there I noticed numerous Boeing 707 airline sized planes parked off a faraway field in the distance. There must have been at least twenty five or thirty of these airline size planes just sitting in isolation from the rest of the planes at the airport.

At first, I thought the planes were merely being mothballed (stored) there until I saw one of them start to move. Curious, I remember asking one of the workers at the airport about who owned the large planes and was told that no one really knew but it was referred to as the "spook airline" because the planes and their use were shrouded in absolute secrecy. Nobody knew who piloted the planeseither because their pilots arrived at the airport either in smaller executive size planes or in vans that went without stopping directly up to the planes after entering the airport property.

it was only later that I discovered these planes belonged to Air America, the "the CIA airline" and were apparently used to ferry large numbers of mostly mercenary soldiers to areas the CIA was interested in at the time. I also learned that the Mojave Airport was only one of several other similar such bases of Air America operation. A friend described laughingly described Air America as the "Coup Airline" because of the CIA's propensity for the overthrowing of unfriendly governments.

About this same time, I also started reading more and more articles about the fact that our elected representatives, even at the highest levels, didn't actually fully know what the CIA was up to because of the CIA's so-called, ultra secret "black budgets" which allowed it to operate without any sort of control from our elected representatives below the Presidental level who claimed they didn't want to know about these "black" activities out of fear of getting blamed once the activities arising out of them became known.

I also started reading about rumors that parts of the CIA had become essentially self-funding using illicit activities like drug running and arms sales to avoid any sort of even marginal budget control by even the President of the US. The CIA's own airline would, of course, provide the ideal transportation vehicle to facilitate such activities.

Essentially this meant that a significant part of the CIA had been allowed to essentially go rogue without any sort of real supervision whatsoever. Unfortunately, The Mossad, would have been more than happy to step in and provide this oversight using friendly Zionists already embedded within the agency.

There are those who now claim that parts of the CIA are hotbeds of Israeli controlled spying activities operating specifically within its unsupervised "black budgets".

State department leader Dean Acheson warned this would happen in the mid-1940′s when plans started being made to turn the wartime OSS into the CIA. I have always thought his opinion might have been formed by his secret wartime access to the Venona Transcripts which extensively detailed how intelligence agencies in both the US and the UK had become hotbeds of Communist spying activities. (Sort of like the Israelis and the CIA today. )

Read about Acheson's very prescient criticism here

https://carnegieendowment.org/2005/12/20/case-for-abolishing-cia-pub-17846

The CIA cannot be fixed. It is too far gone. It should be abolished.

English Outsider , May 10, 2018 at 5:15 pm GMT
I would earnestly recommend that you go to the Colonel's site, SST, and read, from the beginning long ago, his articles analysing the defects of Western foreign policy and what leads to those defects. You will find there the most powerful and informed thinking on this subject that there is.

I myself don't really belong here because I'm a tooth and nail Deplorable as well as a foreigner. But so what? We both know that what our respective elites are doing is wrong. We both know that there has to be some other way. If we don't seek out balanced and considered analysis then we might as well run off and join those many dissidents for whom dissidence is merely a hobby, or those many others for whom it merely offers occasion for dispute.

Them Guys , May 10, 2018 at 5:28 pm GMT
So, these inner problem's within every major intel agency can be basically summed up in just four word's ..Beware the jews within.

Now back to my soon to be finished one page book that will sum up everything false we were told or taught regarding WWII in all it's many areas .."The Complete Untold Truth about, WWII" .

"Them Germans was Correct!" The End.

Best one page book length expose' one can obtain in the vast search for real fact based Truth, of which international jewry so hate's for one to learn of eh.

bjondo , May 10, 2018 at 5:29 pm GMT
Get rid of the intelligence agencies.
If Jewsa needs info about a region, country, even itself, ask Russia, China. Answers will be intelligent, diplomatic, accurate, and relevant.

Billions saved can go to help, real help not bombs, countries destroyed for Israel and impoverished by Goldman Sachs, Monsanto, ilk.

LeaNder , May 10, 2018 at 5:39 pm GMT
@LeaNder

I asked at what precise part of his piece you smelt sophistry. Maybe I have lost my ability in reading comprehension of your language. Could well be? Apparent from being more generally not too fond of sloganeering.

a number of presumptions which are not supported by current reality

Those would be specifically?

Them Guys , May 10, 2018 at 5:52 pm GMT
@schrub

Just look at how during the reign of Chabad Rabbi Dov Zakiem appointed as Head of Pentagon $$$ controls etc What began as a mention to tv reporters a day prior to 9/11 event's of somehow pentagon cannot account for a Missing $2.3-TRILLION!!! Has as of last date I read any new revelations of that missing cash, morphed into almost $9.5-TRILLION missing!!! And that last amount was like several month's ago.

What a Cohencidence eh? And just think what new and worse swindle scams Israel and it's mossad wonderkins can come up with to do next with so large an amount of Black Budget ready cash available?

Yes Yes I know that several hasbara clown's and tribal member's will say no such stolen cash ever goes to 100% innocent Israel and it's equally innocent jewry aka "The World's Biggest and Only Victim's that ever matter".

But daily now another 10,000 folks in America awaken to fact that research proves beyond all doubt that virtually Every evil and bad and immoral and unethical type issue or event since 3,500 yr's ago has More jewdeo fingerprint's all over it than any other cause period.

And once red pilled and awakened to such real truth's .None are able to return to their former asleep position even if they wished to No amount of jewish hasbara propagandas will ever be able to undo real truth once that cats been let out of the bag so to speak.

Mossad/Israel state moto:.."By Deception(lies!) You Shall Cause War's" .Indeed they do eh.

AriusArmenian , May 10, 2018 at 5:54 pm GMT
The author is right as far as he goes but he ignores the CIA/Wall Street complex that was established by Allen Dulles – that complex is at the very core of the US Deep State.
That complex is held together from the top; notice that only the very connected are put in charge of the CIA and connected means very tied into Wall Street.
The CIA, in spite of their low period in the 1970′s, has been very effective in controlling the US media.
Note how the Brennan secret team created a trap that the democrats walked right into.
And note how they have the FBI taking the fall while the CIA continues to operate in the shadows.
I like the author; he brings some sanity but he is still a creature of US supremacism.
He doesn't like me; he has blocked me from commenting at his site.
But I still hope he speaks out as far as he goes.
Hot Nuns of Castle Anthrax , May 10, 2018 at 6:06 pm GMT
It is helpful to learn the point of view of the knightly orders, which, as in the middle ages, constitute a parasitic class indoctrinated to see nothing but the stylized ethical set pieces proper to their order.

Here are a few things Lang cannot acknowledge without jeopardizing his identity:

Impunity. Doesn't show up in the list of CIA flaws, but it's staring him in the face, right there in black and white: the Central Intelligence Agency Act, the Rogers/Huston get-out-of-jail-free card, the Intelligence Identities Protection Act, the operational files exemption, the political questions doctrine, and lots of secret law and regulations. Under municipal law (strictly speaking, it doesn't meet minimal legal standards, it's administrative red tape,) CIA can get away with anything. So they are institutionally criminal. This is a sore point, frantically repressed. Even vague recollections of old movies are enough to trigger the traditional posturing of honor-based chivalric cultures.

Operations. Beltway courtiers are constrained to discuss CIA's intelligence function in isolation from its overwhelmingly dominant, and inherently criminal, clandestine operations function. In reality, all analysts are paid to do is complain about NCS crime. Then when their next criminal racket gets caught, NCS trots out some analysts to say, 'We at CIA warned about this.' CIA operations includes gun-running, drug-dealing, human trafficking and pedophile blackmail, murder, torture, coercive interference, and aggression by armed bands and irregulars. Intelligence is not CIA's business.

Rule of law. Lang, in the context of the USG going to war, writes, "If the "Intelligence Community" as it now exists were abolished, some other group would have to assume the burden of performing the same functions." Right. That other group would be the duly constituted authority under US supreme law, the UN Security Council, which the intelligence community devoted most of their efforts to subverting with foreign corrupt practices and fabricated war propaganda. It's not like CIA got stuck with this job, they usurped it.

Heros , May 10, 2018 at 6:20 pm GMT
@English Outsider

Having had my comments deleted and been blocked several times on SST, I can tell anyone who would listen to not listen to your advice and waste hours poring over that myopic blog. Myopic, because anytime someone writes an interesting comment that contradicts any of Lang's masonic beliefs, Lang gets nasty. Even TwistedGenius has had to dance around a snarling Lang because he crossed some secret line.

Sure, Lang was right about a lot of things from 2003-2007. But he was also often wrong and no one ever dared to call him on it.

Once again, I will point out Lang's complete failure to deviate from the narrative on things like all these gun-grabbing "mass shootings". As I recall Lang was even very wishy washy about the second amendment, offering to sell his guns in a government gun grab. So he lies to us about about what his masonic brethren are up to on this front.

But of course the biggest void in his analysis is the JQ. He attends barmitzfa's, purim, and who knows what other kind of cabal rituals. He cannot deal with the JQ because he is borg, and he knows what kind of punishment would await him. And angry jews crying for blood revenge aren't any where near as bad as when the masonic brotherhood turns on you.

RobinG , May 10, 2018 at 6:27 pm GMT
@Sceptical

(does the tail wag the dog)?

Good question. Where does Trump get his ludicrous talking points on Iran and Syria?

smelly oil and gas , May 10, 2018 at 7:01 pm GMT
@Heros

Agree but I think it is much more than a smoke Screen and preparation for war.
The 527 paid slave drivers and their bureaucrats and military (called the USA) has become a permanent false flag operation. The 9/11 advisory explained:
1. slave drivers have been ordered to spy on slaves,
2. slave drivers have been ordered to silence all slave protests and objections,
3. slave drivers have been ordered to study the slaves like rats in cage,
4. slave drivers have been ordered to deprive the slaves until production is sufficient to satisfy the Pharaohs.
5. slave drivers have been ordered to keep the USA dark, slaves are not allowed to know or learn anything
they don't pay for.
6. Slaves are expected to listen to Pharaoh produced, media distributed propaganda at least 12 hours per day.

Americans now live in fear of the Bastards from the Dark Side Kingdom of Lies.

The problem is how to save America from the USA. The USA is milking our cattle, selling our eggs, fencing us in with costly schooling and licenses to be eligible to get work, spying on our thoughts, destroying our earning platforms, price and ticket gating our access to information, bottling and selling to us, our once free water and air, and generally putting Americans at risk to attack from the global outside and famine blight from the inside.

[May 15, 2018] Suspect Identified in C.I.A. Leak Was Charged, but Not for the Breach - The New York Times

May 15, 2018 | www.nytimes.com

... ... ...

[Vault 7] was the largest loss of classified documents in the agency's history and a huge embarrassment for C.I.A. officials.

Now, the prime suspect in the breach has been identified: a 29-year-old former C.I.A. software engineer who had designed malware used to break into the computers of terrorism suspects and other targets, The New York Times has learned.

Agents with the Federal Bureau of Investigation searched the Manhattan apartment of the suspect, Joshua A. Schulte, one week after WikiLeaks released the first of the C.I.A. documents in March last year, and then stopped him from flying to Mexico on vacation, taking his passport, according to court records and relatives. The search warrant application said Mr. Schulte was suspected of "distribution of national defense information," and agents told the court they had retrieved "N.S.A. and C.I.A. paperwork" in addition to a computer, tablet, phone and other electronics.

But instead of charging Mr. Schulte in the breach, referred to as the Vault 7 leak, prosecutors charged him last August with possessing child pornography, saying agents had found 10,000 illicit images on a server he created as a business in 2009 while studying at the University of Texas at Austin.

Court papers quote messages from Mr. Schulte that suggest he was aware of the encrypted images of children being molested by adults on his computer, though he advised one user, "Just don't put anything too illegal on there."

In September, Mr. Schulte was released on the condition that he not leave New York City, where he lived with a cousin, and keep off computers. He was jailed in December after prosecutors found evidence that he had violated those rules, and he has been held at the Metropolitan Correctional Center in Manhattan since then. He has posted on Facebook under a pseudonym a series of essays critical of the criminal justice system.

It is unclear why, more than a year after he was arrested, he has not been charged or cleared in connection with Vault 7. Leak investigators have had access to electronic audit trails inside the C.I.A. that may indicate who accessed the files that were stolen, and they have had possession of Mr. Schulte's personal data for many months.

... ... ...

According to his family and his LinkedIn page , Mr. Schulte did an internship at the National Security Agency while working on a bachelor's degree in computer engineering. He worked in the C.I.A.'s Engineering Development Group, which designed the hacking tools used by its Center for Cyber Intelligence. He left the agency in November 2016 and moved to New York to work for Bloomberg L.P. as a software engineer.

Most of the government's cyberespionage is carried out by the N.S.A., but the C.I.A. also employs hackers. The leaked Vault 7 documents came from the agency's Engineering Development Group and included descriptions and instructions for the use of agency hacking tools, but only a small amount of the actual computer code for the tools.

.... ... ...

[May 15, 2018] This is not 4% of GDP id misleading a more poroet figure is 30 percentof federal tax revenue or each third dollar collected

Or over 50% of the discretionary budget.
From reader comments: If I had my way, I would bring back the draft with NO college deferments. In fact, the sons and daughters of politicians would get called up first. Service in the IDF doesn't count. ... ... "Yes, but expand that. Mandate that we first enlist, train, and promptly deploy any children and grandchildren of all members of Congress, members of the President's Cabinet, federal judges, Federal Reserve Board of Governors, and the CEOs/CFOs/CIOs etc. of military companies (including Northrup Grumman, Boeing, and their ilk). "
This is a very large "sinecure"
At a deeper level, military forces are agents/enforcers for the elite. Its primary role is the providing expansion and the defense of the interests of the ruling elite against external and internal enemies. Without addressing the dominant social interests in the state, a focus on shringking the military budget is quite inadequate.
May 15, 2018 | www.unz.com

Thorfinnsson , May 15, 2018 at 2:42 pm GMT

I don't have a problem with 4% of GDP, but I have a big problem with what we're getting for our money.

A quarter million for a four-star general is fine, if the general is any good (almost none of them are by design). In theory a general is equivalent to a division manager in a Fortune 500 company, but COs in the US military have amazingly little power. They're not even free to hire and fire their own subordinates in most cases. So our senior officers are really paid generously to pretend they are great military commanders.

The average SAT score at West Point is only 1340 these days. Prior to the Vietnam War I believe West Point was academically competitive with Ivy League schools, or at least that's what Class of '68 veteran John T. Reed states.

The Naval Academy is 1322 and the Air Force Academy is 1370.

These aren't bad scores, but clearly these officers aren't elite academically.

The enlisted personnel seem adequate in quality thanks to the AFQT, other than women of course. They're overpaid compared to what is available for them in the private sector.

The pension system, in addition to being overly generous, has perverse incentives. As any service-member approaches that magical 20 year mark, any kind of independent thinking must disappear (which the military already does so much to eliminate). Want your fat pension? Better shut up and emulate your COs in every way possible. It should just be replaced with a Thrift Savings Plan (gov't equivalent of a 401k).

One sixth of the force consists of women. Every last one of them subtracts from the efficacy of the military.

One sixth of personnel are officers, which is far too many officers.

Then you have all the unnecessary EO officers, JAGs, and other political commissars.

I don't have an issue with the various recreational perks in the armed forces as they contribute to espirit de corps. The private sector could use more of this, honestly.

The GI Bill is also politically objectionable as we should not be giving money to The Enemy (colleges in this case).

LTDanKaffey , May 15, 2018 at 2:44 pm GMT
This is the price a mercantile republic pays for an all volunteer fighting force. When you have less than 5% of the population serving in the military and commitments all over the globe, then you need to be prepared to pay for those professional services (yes, the military is a profession like any other). If you're prepared to go back to a draft force, then we can start talking about changes to the pay and benefit system.

Personally, I think service of some kind, be it military or community, ought to be a requirement to vote. Service guarantees citizenship.

ChuckOrloski , May 15, 2018 at 3:06 pm GMT
Calling geokat, U.R. Research Specialist A-1!

Hi geo,

Maybe you can help me on the following ancillary matter? F.y.i., Mighty John Bolton passed on an opportunity to fight LBJ's atrocious war against communism, in Vietnam. As PreZident Trump's present Iranophobe-warmongering N.S.A. Adviser, I tried (but failed) to determine how much pay & "bennies" Bolton now gets from the bottomless Executive Branch feeding trough.

Can you help me here, geo?

ANON [285] Disclaimer , May 15, 2018 at 3:14 pm GMT
@SteveM

Same scam, different tactics. 40 years ago we lived in Annapolis, MD in the lowest tier of a then – New housing development concept. Our cramped townhouses were on the scrabble outer ring.

The most lavish houses were in the inner-ring, on a divided boulevard, extensively landscaped and maintained. At least 3/4 of those homes were owned by "Double-Dippers"– military retirees collecting military retirement pay while employed as civil servants in Federal gov, with defense contractor consulting on the side.

"Thank you for your service,"– in cash, if you please.

The Scalpel , Website May 15, 2018 at 3:28 pm GMT
@LTDanKaffey

I do not mind community service, but I object to military service and I do not want to vote. Voting gives legitimacy to a system that I oppose. I was born in the geographical area now ruled by the government of the United States of America. Perhaps, LT Dan, you would be in favor of a status such as non-citizen resident. I was born in this area by a quirk of fate, not any choice on my part. I do not usually agree with US government policy, nor do I want the US government to represent me or "protect" me. It would be just for me to pay less taxes since I do not desire and would gladly refuse most of the "services" the government provides, especially those noted in the above article.

E. Rekshun , May 15, 2018 at 3:30 pm GMT
Neither me, my father, my grandfather, nor my great grandmother served in the US Military, but one of the large defense contractors put bread on the table for four generations of my family. My 90-year old grandmother is still collecting my grandfather's pension from that firm and he's been dead for 30 years!
jacques sheete , May 15, 2018 at 3:47 pm GMT
@Anonymous

US is rich and the debt is high. Both can be true at the same time. But taxes are relatively low so if there is a government debt crisis paying down the debt would just involve raising taxes. Just look at GDP per capita US which is very high up there so I don't see how anyone can argue the US is not a very rich country.

Despite many problems, the US has many advantages like half the world's Ashkenazim who are very good at creating unbeatable new companies .etc., etc., etc .

Thanks for the laughs. You must be of the Maven-Krugman school of debt. You're all wrong, and it's obviously beyond your understanding that though you can fool almost all of the goyim almost all of the time, you can't fool all of us all the time.

However, please do keep trying!

jacques sheete , May 15, 2018 at 3:52 pm GMT
@Achmed E. Newman

AEN, thank you for your fine input, but I suspect you're throwing pearls to swine who don't even want to understand.

Even worse, when they claim that debt is good, they conveniently leave out the part about who it's good for.

We dumb goyim have repeatedly proven ourselves to be pretty easy marks, but some of us have a clue as to who's paying for it all, and its good to know that a few know who that would be, so thanks again.

jacques sheete , May 15, 2018 at 4:04 pm GMT
@Verymuchalive

The only thing preventing complete bankruptcy is that the Dollar is the World's Reserve Currency -- for now.

Yup.

And "The Gweatist Generation" fought WW2 to defend worldwide freedom. I guess they forgot about the Bretton-Woods party.

We been had, I think.

RVBlake , May 15, 2018 at 4:06 pm GMT
@Tom Welsh

That was a jolting eye-catcher. So this general still receives a six-figure pension check!? I've often marveled at the moral fiber exhibited by these gilded peacocks, who, when faced with supporting criminal actions by their government, such as invading countries who've done us no harm, click their heels and proceed. Instead of taking an instant retirement, knowing their pensions are secure.

Achmed E. Newman , Website May 15, 2018 at 4:09 pm GMT
@Thomm

AGREED

They'll find out how well a social-experiment disguised as a military force works in a real war with a country that American can't bully around.

LTDanKaffey , May 15, 2018 at 4:14 pm GMT
@The Scalpel

Absolutely in favor of a non-resident citizen.

You would still be required to pay some kind of lease or tax for the land which you occupy, but would otherwise be left alone. You would also be subject to the criminal laws of the jurisdiction you occupied. You would also pay taxes for any consumption that requires use of infrastructure or interstate commerce.

The United States is large enough that such an arrangement is still possible.

bjondo , May 15, 2018 at 4:16 pm GMT
@Anonymous

Over 50% of the discretionary budget. Like $$ going to the toxic Yid landfill, we don't know actual amounts.

Stonehands , May 15, 2018 at 4:20 pm GMT
@Anonymous

" US spends 4% of GDP on the military versus 2% in China, France, UK. That's high but considering how rich the US is, not unbearable. Weak article "
-- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -
Every productive dollar that's ever existed has been flushed down the MIC rathole. The whole "budget "is an elaborate ruse to conceal the chains that bind you.
10's of trillions disappear with gleeful approval on a regular basis.

You sound like a typical brainwashed SHYSTER.

anonymous [340] Disclaimer , May 15, 2018 at 4:20 pm GMT
You guys are two of my favorites.

But 405's second paragraph made it seem clear to me that he was trolling.

ohmy , Website May 15, 2018 at 4:24 pm GMT
Mr. Girard, buon giorno. You must be my elder. In '68 I was paid $96 plus $26 combat pay while in Nam.
Yea, things are out of control. Unfortunately, the store clerk you ran into the other day is representative of how the majority of "we the people" think. Hence, don't expect change anytime soon.
I have been a fan of yours for sometime now. Mostly at NEO, sometimes art Rense. I recently began accessing UNZ and was pleased to see your name in the list of contributors. Sadly I don't predict improvement in the majorities attitude. But, you do fine work, dom't quit just yet. As long as we can keep the internet affordable reality may trickle down. I believe the net is the reason the "fake news" moniker had to be. Sort if like "conspiracy theory". Same party owns both copyrights.
Keep your head up.
Joseph
jacques sheete , May 15, 2018 at 4:27 pm GMT
@Backwoods Bob

Foreign entanglements, searching for monsters to destroy, acting as the world police – this is the main problem.

Yooge problems for sure, but playing Sugar Daddy to Izzie-land is the biggest one of all in terms of dollars as well as moral capital, and it probably dwarfs welfare subsidies to "defense" corporations.

bjondo , May 15, 2018 at 4:31 pm GMT
@Anonymous

Love the Wall St innovations and Fed innovations and reasons to go to warssss. Broke the economy while stealing trillions. Did similar to Russia...

WorkingClass , May 15, 2018 at 4:43 pm GMT
When I joined the U.S. Army in 1965 my starting pay was slightly less than 100 dollars per month. Soldiers then were said to be "in the service". Today they are "in the military". Later in life I realized that I had been "in the service" of evil. Still later I learned that the love of money is the root of evil.

The American Dollar Dies in New York – a Satire from Uganda:

https://russia-insider.com/en/american-dollar-dies-new-york-satire-uganda/ri23421

ohmy , Website May 15, 2018 at 4:48 pm GMT
@Verymuchalive

JS, Since Rumsfeld admitted, the day before 911 when he helped murder 30 forensic accountants plus a handful of Naval Investigators, you are 1 of the few I ever heard mention the stolen money. Since the Clinton administration up to 2016 the number is now $21 $Trillions, from just 2 departments.

Check out Catherine Fitts @ solari.com

JackOH , May 15, 2018 at 4:49 pm GMT
@Backwoods Bob

BB, I personally know a couple who are around seventy, very healthy and active, who have parlayed multiple pension-qualifying careers between them in the armed forces, postal service, teaching, and county government, into astounding lifestyles. Harley motorcycle, Winnebago, big house, weekend cottage, cruises, the whole shebang.

They're very nice people, part of the local Puerto Rican ascendancy, first generation descendants of the Puerto Ricans recruited by the now defunct local steel mills back in the 1950s.

I'm sure it can be said they worked for what they got, but, still . . . you gotta wonder what's going on.

Anon [355] Disclaimer , May 15, 2018 at 4:49 pm GMT
These 'hero' armed missionaries also get preferential treatment in state/government hiring.
SteveM , May 15, 2018 at 4:53 pm GMT
@Quartermaster

Military spending has one virtue, it is constitutional as it fulfills one duty of the FedGov, one it has often shirked, defend the country.

Giraldi can whine all he likes, but the DOD is not an entitlement program, nor does the Pentagon get all it wants. It never has gotten all it wants, no matter how much Giraldi whines to the contrary.

I've never seen such a warped and delusional understanding of the voracious, insatiable, wasteful and corrupt National Security State presented so succinctly

P.S. I have a feeling that War Machine accounts have written Quatermaster a lot of checks over the years. I.e., he knows what side his bread is buttered on.

ohmy , Website May 15, 2018 at 5:00 pm GMT
@anon

anon, tell it like it is. Everyone should also know the debt servce cost to our budget is the interest Americans pay. What's 2% of 20 trillions? 40 billions? IDK l, but it's alot. Well that's the federal reserve *a private corp.) income estimate for the yeat, which the share holders, all 6 of them, pay no income tax.

Thorfinnsson , May 15, 2018 at 5:08 pm GMT
@WorkingClass

Still later I learned that the love of money is the root of evil.

No wonder you're WorkingClass .

Mike P , May 15, 2018 at 5:32 pm GMT
@ohmy

Since the Clinton administration up to 2016 the number is now $21 $Trillions, from just 2 departments.

Can you explain to me how that even works, technically? E.g. the DoD is supposed to have "stolen" a lot more money than its entire regular budget – how could they even lay their hands on such sums? What accounts did that money sit in before it was siphoned off, without anyone noticing?

Verymuchalive , May 15, 2018 at 5:33 pm GMT
@Tom Welsh

The US military are the equivalent of the Roman Empire's honestiores, or upper classes. As well as the benefits accruing from service, they had special legal treatment, like being exempt from judicial torture. So Arthur Lichte merely gets part of his pension docked for raping a woman. Nothing to see here , mate, move along. Even someone like Chelsea ( " They call her Natasha, but she looks like Elsie" ) Manning spends a mere 7 years in prison and gets the Defence Department to pay for "gender reassignment".

The point about judicial torture is important as America has recently revived the practice. Would Assange be waterboarded if they got hold of him ? Would he have met a fatal "accident" in custody?

Who knows ? But don't you even think about doing that to an American serviceman, even one as degenerate as Manning.

Jeff77450 , May 15, 2018 at 5:49 pm GMT
I wish pay & benefits had been "out of control" when I was in the army in the 1970s.
Anonymous [862] Disclaimer , May 15, 2018 at 5:54 pm GMT
@jacques sheete

That wasn't a response. It was just name calling. So if you aren't convinced by my rebuttal it's certainly not because you had more intelligent analysis.

Anonymous [862] Disclaimer , May 15, 2018 at 5:57 pm GMT
@Achmed E. Newman

You use a lot of figures but not the appropriate statistics. What do big aggregate numbers like 200k in debt per family really mean?

I look at the percentage of tax revenue v. GDP compared to other first world countries. US is actually on the low side by this measure. That means it's possible to raise taxes and only moderately harm the economic growth engine. And no one has addressed the advantages the US economy has in particular having half of the world's Ashkenazim.

jacques sheete , May 15, 2018 at 6:05 pm GMT
@ohmy

Rumsfeld admitted, the day before 911 when he helped murder 30 forensic accountants plus a handful of Naval Investigators,

Thanks, it's nice to know that there are others who are wide awake. Trouble is, even those who have a clue can't even imagine the .0001% of it, I'm sure.

jacques sheete , May 15, 2018 at 6:07 pm GMT
@Mike P

What accounts did that money sit in before it was siphoned off, without anyone noticing?

We'll probably never know. The system is not exactly designed for transparency, and besides, guess where the missile, errr, "plane" hit the Penta-graft?

Wouldn't it be fun to ask Rummy the Smirking Dummy that question?

I bet this swinish character could provide a bit of insight with a little Nuremberg or Abu Ghraib style info gathering as well, and here's a partial rap sheet

Dov S. Zakheim was sworn in as the Under Secretary of Defense (Comptroller) and Chief Financial Officer for the Department of Defense on May 4, 2001. Dr. Zakheim has previously served in a number of key positions in government and private business.

Most recently, he was corporate vice president of System Planning Corp., a technology, research and analysis firm based in Arlington, Va. He also served as chief executive officer of SPC International Corp., a subsidiary specializing in political, military and economic consulting. During the 2000 presidential campaign, he served as a senior foreign policy advisor to then-Governor Bush.

From 1985 until March 1987, Dr. Zakheim was Deputy Under Secretary of Defense for Planning and Resources in the Office of the Under Secretary of Defense (Policy). In that capacity, he played an active role in the Department's system acquisition and strategic planning processes. Dr. Zakheim held a variety of other DoD posts from 1981 to 1985. Earlier, he was employed by the National Security and International Affairs Division of the Congressional Budget Office.

Dr. Zakheim has been a participant on a number of government, corporate, non-profit and charitable boards.

http://www.jewishvirtuallibrary.org/jsource/biography/Zakheim.html

Charles Pewitt , May 15, 2018 at 6:12 pm GMT
The United States military is a giant jobs program, Giraldi! So what of it! Who cares. Conjure up those dollars out of thin air and let the troops have some loot. Did the Founding Fathers warn us about large standing armies in their writings and actions? Yes.

Did the Founding Fathers know that a large standing army would require a concentrated form of governmental power to collect the loot to pay for that army? Yes.

Did we just pass the 800 year anniversary of the Magna Carta? Yes. Was the Magna Carta about standing armies and concentrated government power, among other things?

Were the Founding Fathers somewhat ungrateful to the British Empire for its efforts in the French and Indian War? Yes.

Would the Founding Fathers be surprised to find a Jew billionaire named Shelly Adelson controlling the use of the US military in the Middle East and West Asia? The cynical and smart ones wouldn't be surprised at all.

The GOP has the War budget and the US military and the Democrats have the public schools and many other government workers. The GOP always promises to spend more loot on the War budget and the US military and the Democrats always promise to spend more money on the public schools and other government programs.

Giraldi has written a CLUNKER of a blog post, folks!

Giraldi should write about mass immigration, monetary extremism and the impossibility of paying for the retirement of the baby boomers.

Mass Immigration: DEMOGRAPHY

Monetary Policy: DEBT

Baby Boomers: NATION WRECKERS

The American Empire is soon to go belly up in a manner similar to the upcoming demise of treasonous rat John McCain.

The WASP /JEW ruling class of the American Empire knows this. A pleasant consolation is that China, Japan and Europe are just as badly bankrupt as the American Empire is.

Raise the federal funds rate to 10 percent and implode the American Empire. Young people must no longer be saddled with massive unpayable debt and the unpayable retirement of the baby boomers. Pull the plug on the baby boomers now, and let the young people have a future.

The Chinese, Japanese and Europeans will implode also. Use the nuclear deterrent and offshore balancing to keep global peace.

jacques sheete , May 15, 2018 at 6:22 pm GMT
@Quartermaster

Giraldi can whine all he likes, but the DOD is not an entitlement program, nor does the Pentagon get all it wants.

If it isn't an entitlement program, then what would one look like? Do you know the meaning of "sinecure?"

You can whine about Giraldi all you want but he's right and yer wrong, and thank G-d that the Pantygon doesn't get all it wants. Can you explain whether it should and why?

PS: Read the comments regarding disabilities and retirement bennies and then get back to us.

jacques sheete , May 15, 2018 at 6:29 pm GMT
@JackOH

I'm sure it can be said they worked for what they got, but, still . . . you gotta wonder what's going on.

It's not called working, it's called "milking," but still they're pikers compared to the arms merchants, bankers and permanent "victim" crowd.

Rod1963 , May 15, 2018 at 6:32 pm GMT
@Anon

You really don't want affirmative action nurses looking after anymore than those Bombay specials that the VA hires as doctors. It's not a perk, it's just free.

The VA is a train wreck because of these people. No one wants to say squat because you have to point a finger at all the AA hires and that would get you labeled as a racist.

And oh they are paid, very, very well. The average RN makes over a $100k at the VA. I know private sector nurses who went to work for the VA because of the pay and bennies. Plus you can't get fired.

jacques sheete , May 15, 2018 at 6:32 pm GMT
@Anonymous

China has been reducing its holdings in US treasuries. What negative effect has this had so far on the US?

US and China kick off talks to avoid a trade war

http://money.cnn.com/2018/05/03/news/economy/china-us-trade-talks-beijing-start/index.html

Just a minor coincidence, I'm sure, but stay tuned.

Rod1963 , May 15, 2018 at 6:38 pm GMT
@Verymuchalive

You do realize that "waterboarding" is part and parcel of SERE school in the military and has been for a very long time. It's where the Pentagon/CIA got idea of applying to a bunch of sand monkeys.

Anyone who is special ops gets waterboarded so are fighter pilots and the like. The MSM always neglects this fact.

Charles Pewitt , May 15, 2018 at 6:39 pm GMT
Dov Zakheim is a nasty Neo-Conservative Jew rat, that is widely known. Zakheim was one of the Neo-Conservative rats who helped to drag the US military into the Iraq War debacle. Seems Neo-Conservative rat boy Dov Zakheim also made himself a wealthy rat through his connections to the WASP / JEW ruling class of the American Empire.

But,

Let's not forget nasty Neo-Conservative Jew rat Michael Chertoff and his pal General Michael Hayden. Baby boomers Chertoff and Hayden have made out like bandits from their involvement in the Deep State of the American Empire. I say the baby boomers are an evil generation of nation wreckers. Tweets from 2015:

... ... ...

anon [217] Disclaimer , May 15, 2018 at 6:56 pm GMT
At least half of our military bills should be sent to Israel. Practically all of our wars these days are on their behalf. The other half should be paid by a war tax. All those who support going to "necessary" wars overseas for "humanitarian" reasons or other will pay into this tax, starting with the neocons and the media (not just mainstream liberal media but many right wing neocon mouthpieces like National Review, Breitbart, DailyCaller).

Last but not least, any elected official who votes for or calls for war with any nation, from Trump to Pence, Nikki Haley, John McCain, John Bolton, Mike Pompeo et al. should fork out 100% of their salaries to pay for the war until it ends.

Anonymous [862] Disclaimer , May 15, 2018 at 6:58 pm GMT
@jacques sheete

If you want to prove your point, then come up with a better rebuttal. If you just want to be a dumbass that's fine too.

Anonymous [862] Disclaimer , May 15, 2018 at 7:03 pm GMT
@jacques sheete

What evidence is there that the trade discussion is based on China reducing treasury holdings rather than counter-tariffs on US agricultural goods and potentially in a number of other areas like education services (blocking Chinese families from sending kids to lower ranked US colleges)?

Realist , May 15, 2018 at 7:16 pm GMT

America's Republican politicians complain that "entitlements," by which they mean pensions and medical care, are leading the country to bankruptcy even as they fatten the spending on the Pentagon, which now takes 12 percent of the overall budget.

The US military budget should be $100 billion .do what you can.

L.K , May 15, 2018 at 7:17 pm GMT
@Anonymous

"Despite many problems, the US has many advantages like half the world's Ashkenazim who are very good at creating unbeatable new companies. Just look at how the half the 40 riches entrepreneurs under 40 in the US according to Forbes are Jewish. Jews are producing so much innovation in the US that it offsets a lot of the problems like military spending at 4% of GDP and less productive sub-populations."

buhahHAHAHAHAHA .

another comedian, thanks for the laughs!

Thorfinnsson , May 15, 2018 at 7:41 pm GMT
@Verymuchalive

Average daily volume in the Treasury market is $500 billion, and the Federal Reserve System is authorized to create unlimited quantities of currency to purchase Treasuries (and other gov't securities) in any case.

This isn't the financial weapon of mass destruction people think it is.

The Chinese themselves know this, which is why they stopped adding to their position and have gradually reduced it.

A more effective strategy would be to focus financial firepower where the Federal Reserve isn't authorized to operate, such as the commercial paper market. Probably Congress itself would then act, but if you can buy enough seats for hard money dweebs you might be able to cause serious trouble.

http://pages.stern.nyu.edu/~sternfin/mkacperc/public_html/commercial.pdf

Sparkon , May 15, 2018 at 7:51 pm GMT

I'm sure the Roman Empire had some version of waterboarding.

The Roman Army's form of punishment was known as decimation , a word now commonly used by semi-literates to torture knowledgeable historians, philologists, and wordsmiths, including not a few Baby Boomers , who apparently know a lot more than you, and who also are smart enough to blame the guilty -- and not an entire generation -- for the misdeeds or evil gains of a relatively few assholes.

But I know subtle nuance like that must be difficult to understand for those who can paint -- or splatter -- only with a very broad brush.

ChuckOrloski , May 15, 2018 at 8:08 pm GMT
@Realist

As if remotely possible to do so, Realist recommended:
"The US military budget should be $100 billion .do what you can."

Hi (Sur)Realist,

A question. Above, who would meaningfully tell that to the ZUS Defense Department, Joint Chiefs of Staff, & the military contractors? Sheldon Adelson? Netanyahu? Take heart! I trust Peter Aus will appear & bring your do-gooder passion into practical reality. Thanks, nevertheless!

Verymuchalive , May 15, 2018 at 8:10 pm GMT
@Charles Pewitt

You make my point for me.
As I said, Judicial Torture was used on humiliores, and, indeed, in European Inquisitorial Systems until the late C18th and early C19th.

RadicalCenter , May 15, 2018 at 8:15 pm GMT
@Anonymous

A person or entity whose liabilities outweigh its assets, is not rich.

This is more true when the entity, like the US Fed Gov, has vastly more liabilities than physical assets, let alone readily marketable assets.

The fed gov has promised to pay more each year than it has recently taken in as revenue, and more than it has any realistic hope of generating anytime soon.

The fed gov is in hock more than 20 trillion in the books right now, and over 100 trillion projected forward.

Yeah the fed gov is rich.

Looking at average and median private-household net worth will not make the picture much rosier.

Stop lying or learn math.

RadicalCenter , May 15, 2018 at 8:19 pm GMT
@Backwoods Bob

Commissaries, gyms, and hair salons on bases in the USA must end.

Pay the soldiers well, but have them live and try to get by in the same economy and world as their employers -- WE THE TAXPAYERS.

Also, require soldiers to live off base and pay their own housing (boosting their cash pay accordingly) OR start counting their housing as taxable income as it would be for the rest of us mere TAXPAYERS.

Charles Pewitt , May 15, 2018 at 8:21 pm GMT
Evil baby boomers in Europe, England and the United States have been protected by the monetary extremism of the European Central Bank, the Bank of England and the Federal Reserve Bank.

It is now time to financially liquidate the evil baby boomer generation. If the Federal Reserve Bank raised the federal funds rate to 10 percent, and the ECB and BoE raised interest rates similarly, the baby boomers in the USA, England and most of Europe would be financially busted. The baby boomers have been the generation that benefited the most from the monetary extremism of the last few decades, and especially since 2008.

The federal funds rate went over 20 percent in 1981, 10 percent now would wipe out the asset bubbles in stocks, bonds and real estate. Do it.

The baby boomers are an evil generation of nation-wreckers. Bill Clinton and George W Bush are prime examples of evil globalizer baby boomers.

Realist , May 15, 2018 at 8:24 pm GMT

Above, who would meaningfully tell that to the ZUS Defense Department, Joint Chiefs of Staff, & the military contractors?

A President with balls.

RadicalCenter , May 15, 2018 at 8:39 pm GMT
@anon

Tough shit that you don't like his tone. We don't like being systematically ripped off and told it's patriotic.

We should start either taxing the military employees' housing allowance OR require them to buy their own housing off-base. I'd be fine with increasing cash salary to make up for it. Let's get an honest number on what their salaries really are and then debate whether they get paid enough.

And by all means let's reform and reduce officer pensions. End this last-three-years calculation and require more than 20 years "service" to get half or more of one's salary as pension. They are desk jobs and they can and should work at least, say, THIRTY years before being able to retire st that level of pension and work elsewhere.

Military is a wasteful fraudulent untrustworthy bureaucracy like any other in the fed gov -- or worse because they get a free pass from a lot of people.

Thorfinnsson , May 15, 2018 at 8:42 pm GMT
@RadicalCenter

The oil and gas resources alone owned by the federal government are worth some $200 trillion. Then there's the fact that the taxing authority of the federal government makes any fiscal deficit a matter of choice to begin with.

ChuckOrloski , May 15, 2018 at 8:46 pm GMT
@jacques sheete

Hi Jacques Sheete,

Am fairly sure you know about Donald Rumsfeld early political career, including his special assignment as an ambitious congressman, & on behalf of the A.Z.C.

If not, below I link ZUS Defense Secretary "Shit Happens" treasonous letter to Robert F. Kennedy.

http://www.israellobby.org/AZCDOJ/congress/default.asp

Be well, Jacques. Thanks!

RadicalCenter , May 15, 2018 at 8:46 pm GMT
@Achmed E. Newman

And we need Russian equipment to get into space these days, apparently. That would be troublesome even if Russia were an ally, as perhaps they should be.

It's worse when our gov chooses to slander, threaten, sanction, and encircle the country on whom we are relying.

Imagine China refusing to sell us what we need AND Russia refusing to let us use or buy its space equipment.

For that matter, there's so much demand for oil and natural gas in India and China -- likely to keep increasing, too -- Russia eventually may be able to say "we will sell to anyone EXCEPT companies and facilities in the USA, and anyone caught reselling to the USA will join them on the blacklist." If Iran and, say, Venezuela or Nigeria did the same, watch out.

RadicalCenter , May 15, 2018 at 9:03 pm GMT
@Quartermaster

Deliberate dishonest distraction. Whether the DOD got as much as it wanted, it gets much more than our actual defense requires, and the people on the gravy train know it.

RadicalCenter , May 15, 2018 at 9:12 pm GMT
@Quartermaster

The fact that defense is a specifically enumerated duty and power of the fed government, has nothing to do with the proper amount to spend on that function.

Money spent attacking countries that are not attacking us here in the USA, are not preparing for imminent attack on us here in the USA, and are not aiding those who are attacking or preparing to imminently attack us here in the USA is NOT part of that legitimate constitutional function.

Same with money spent defending Israel or Saudi Arabia, helping the saudis kill Yemenis in Yemen, helping islamists or anyone else overthrow the gov of Syria, etc.

Same with money spent defending (or controlling) Germany, France, South Korea, Japan, etc.

Calling that "whining" is not an argument. It suggests that you lack an honest, logical argument on this issue.

RadicalCenter , May 15, 2018 at 9:15 pm GMT
@Andele

The threat is the Mexicans we have allowed in, not any credible military threat from Mexico's armed forces.

Our military should be posted on the entire southern border with orders to kill all invaders who do not heed warnings to turn back. Add a minefield, barbed wire fencing where absent, and armed drones.

RadicalCenter , May 15, 2018 at 9:17 pm GMT
@SteveM

He's a double-dipper with gov pensions. Double dipped in bullshit, apparently.

J.Ross , Website May 15, 2018 at 9:30 pm GMT
@Anon

The clothing allowance is for purchase, upkeep, and repair of uniforms. There is a bureaucratic mindset of having things clearly laid out which guarantees a lot of this spending, especially when the time preferences of new enlistees bears out the wisdom of having a specially set aside and clearly labeled clothing allowance. Many good critics with detailed grievamces skip over the governmental addiction to trying to solve reality with longer and longer rulebooks.

ChuckOrloski , May 15, 2018 at 9:47 pm GMT
@RadicalCenter

Radical Center proposed: "Russia eventually may be able to say "we will sell to anyone EXCEPT companies and facilities in the USA, and anyone caught reselling to the USA will join them on the blacklist."

Hi Radical Center,

Speaking with utmost respect for your typical sound-thought, have you ever approached the issue from the Globalist's (ideal) "Radical Center" perspective where the planet's economic & military Superpowers decide how crude oil & natural gas sale & distribution is done?

A very serious "thanks," R.C.!

Per/Norway , May 15, 2018 at 10:05 pm GMT
@TheBoom

sad but true.

ChuckOrloski , May 15, 2018 at 10:35 pm GMT
@RadicalCenter

Radical Center opined: "Our military should be posted on the entire southern border with orders to kill all invaders who do not heed warnings to turn back."

Hi Radical Center,

The biggest problem I have with the solution (above) is your having used, in error, the words, "Our military."

Were that the actual case, Jewish Lobbies, billionaire ZUS Jews, Congress, & PreZident Trump would be very pissed at Mr. Giraldi's for provocatively having the gall to use the description, "American military" in his article title.

Thanks again, Radical Center. By increment, you are getting there! So please simply consider dropping the word "Our"?

Like one of the Maven Shama's "old grey mares, "That ain't what it used to be."

anarchyst , May 15, 2018 at 10:49 pm GMT
@Tom Welsh

There are two standards one for enlisted personnel and the other for officers. During the Grenada situation some enlisted personnel and officers were caught attempting to ship captured AK-47 rifles back to the states. The enlisted personnel got "hard time" in Leavenworth while the officers got "letters of reprimand". Double standard, indeed.
I might have made the military a career, but the disparities in both facilities and treatment of officers vs. enlisted was a real turn-off. I completed my enlistment honorably and returned to civilian life.
It is my humble opinion (and personal observation) that the commissioned officer rank structure where there is concern for the enlisted troops ends with the rank of colonel. The general staff is more akin to political office than it is to serving in the military and taking care of their military subordinates.
As to "pay and allowances", when I was active duty (1969-1971) it was not much. In fact, at the time, those of us in uniform were looked down upon and blamed for the prosecution of the Vietnam conflict. Not only that, legislated job programs that were supposed to go to us Vietnam veterans never materialized.
Yes, the all-volunteer forced made it necessary to increase "pay and allowances" to relatively attractive levels.
If I had my way, I would bring back the draft with NO college deferments. In fact, the sons and daughters of politicians would get called up first. Service in the IDF doesn't count.

anarchyst , May 15, 2018 at 10:54 pm GMT
@RadicalCenter

You are correct. The rest of the world that falls under the USA "defense umbrella" can afford extravagant social programs as they do not pay for their defense. In fact, WE are required to pay rent on foreign bases in which to place our troops.
If I had my way, all foreign troop deployments would stop. Those countries requesting our "protection" would have to pay for it.
Seems to me, that was one of President Trump's campaign promises–making foreign countries pay for their defense.

Rurik , May 15, 2018 at 10:59 pm GMT
@TheBoom

sad but true

Johnr , May 15, 2018 at 11:11 pm GMT
You sir are an American hating leftist. The military, until the left decided it was the government's job to provide cradel to grave care for everyone accounted for more than 75 percent of the federal budget. To complain that the military consumes 12 of the budget while Medicaid consumes 50 percent is a straw man. Having been an infantry man I can tell you that anyone who can do 20 or 30 years deserves a life long pension. Being a man is hard on the body.
JackOH , May 15, 2018 at 11:16 pm GMT
@jacques sheete

He's currently a court bailiff, a patronage job here, earning maybe in the low $30s. Plus, his 20-year Army pension, plus his 20+-year postal service pension. He's a high school grad. His wife is fully retired with a 20-year Army pension, and a teacher's pension with about 20 years in.

I'll take a wild guess their retirement income is no less than $100,000 a year in my very low-cost area.

A go-figure sort of deal. Not just double-dipping. More than that, as you and other folks here have said. It's a mentality, a mind-set. For some of the worst of those high-salary government folks, there are only three types of Americans: Bill Gates and other billionaires, government workers, and Americans who are too stupid to find a corporate or government milch cow.

RadicalCenter , May 15, 2018 at 11:18 pm GMT
@ChuckOrloski

You're right, of course. These days I try to always write and say "the US government" rather than "OUR government." I should have done the same with "US military."

RadicalCenter , May 15, 2018 at 11:20 pm GMT
@anarchyst

Yes, but expand that.

Mandate that we first enlist, train, and promptly deploy any children and grandchildren of all members of Congress, members of the President's Cabinet, federal judges, Federal Reserve Board of Governors, and the CEOs/CFOs/CIOs etc. of military companies (including Northrup Grumman, Boeing, and their ilk).

I'd support enacting such a requirement today.

[May 15, 2018] The Ruinously Expensive American Military by Philip Giraldi

Looks like US military belong to the privileged class like it was in late Roman empire
Notable quotes:
"... This why career servicemen love the military, they are making 2-3 times more than comparable civilians, and they know it! Read my article if you are confused. Then many of these "retirees" leave at age 40 with nice retirement, then get a regular federal job, and put in for every minor ache and pain and get a thousand or more dollars each month in VA tax free "disability" pay. Sleep Apnea (aka snoring) is a popular disability to claim worth up to 50%. Some get 100% disability but you wouldn't know it if you met them, and still work for Uncle Sam full time! The LA Times reported that after Senator John McCain announced he was fit to run for President, he was getting military retirement, 100% tax free VA disability, his Senator pay and social security retirement! ..."
"... For me the pay and benefits aren't the core problem. We are paying to destabilize the world, kill US citizens, kill civilians, increase terror all for wars that don't benefit the American citizenry as a whole in any way. ..."
May 15, 2018 | www.unz.com

... ... ...

Today's United States has 2,083,000 soldiers, sailors, marines and airmen on active duty plus reserves. Now that the military is an all-volunteer rather than a conscript force, it is understandable that pay and benefits should be close to or equivalent to civilian pay scales. Currently, a sergeant first class with 10 years in service gets paid $3968 a month. A captain with ten years gets $6271. That amounts to $47,616 and $75,252 a year respectively plus healthcare, food, housing, cost of living increases and bonuses to include combat pay.

Though there are several options for retirement, generally speaking a soldier, sailor Marine or airman can retire after 20 years with half of his or her final "high three" pay as a pension, which means an 18-year-old who enlists right out of high school will be 38 and if he or she makes sergeant first class (E-7) he or she will be collecting $2338 a month or more for a rest of his or her life adjusted for cost of living,

Many Americans would be astonished at the pensions that general officers and admirals receive, particularly since 80% of them also land in "retirement" generously remunerated positions with defense contractors either in active positions soliciting new contracts from their former peers or sitting on boards. General David Petraeus, whom The Nation describes as the "general who lost two wars," pulls in a pension of $220,000 even though he was forced to resign as CIA Director due to passing classified information to his mistress. He is also chairman of a New York City based company KKR Global, which is part of a private equity firm Kohlberg, Kravis Roberts. He reportedly is paid in six figures plus bonuses for "oversee[ing] the institute's thought leadership platform focused on geopolitical and macro-economic trends, as well as environmental, social, and governance issues."

It apparently is difficult to take money away from general and flag officers. An Air Force four-star general named Arthur Lichte was reduced in rank to a two-star in 2017 after he was found guilty of having raped a lower ranking woman officer. His pension went down from $216,000 to $156,000 due to the reduction. Normally, however, America's 1,000 general and flag officers can look forward to comfortable retirements.

But on top of that rather generous bit of cash there are the considerable other benefits, as the old recruiting sergeants would put it, the "bennies." Military retirees can receive full tuition and expenses at a college or technical school if they choose to go back to school. This is why one sees so many ads for online universities on television – they are trolling for soldier dollars knowing that it's free money. The retiree will also have access to heavily subsidized medical care for him or herself plus family. The medical care is a significant bonus under the Tricare system, which describes itself on its website as "the gold standard for medical coverage, [that] is government managed health insurance." A friend who is retired recently had a hip replacement operation that would have cost $39,000 for only a few hundred dollars through Tricare.

What is significant is that even enlisted military personnel can start a second career on top of their pension, given that many of them are still in their thirties. Some that have security clearances can jump into highly paid jobs with defense contractors immediately while others also find places in the bureaucracy with the Department of Homeland Security. Working for the government twice is called "double dipping."

Some would argue that military personnel deserve what they get because the jobs are by their very nature dangerous, sometimes fatal. Indeed, the number of maimed and PTSD-afflicted soldiers returning from the endless wars is a national tragedy and caring for them should be a top priority. But the truth is that only a very small fraction, by some estimates far less than 20% of Army and Marine personnel in so-called "combat arms," ever are in danger. Air Force and Navy personnel rarely experience combat at all apart from bombing targets far below or launching cruise missiles against Syrians. It is true that given the volatile nature of war against insurgents in places like Afghanistan many soldiers in support roles can come under fire, but it is far from normal and most men and women in service never experience a gun fired in anger.

Some numbers-crunchers in the Pentagon have already raised the alarm that the current pay, benefits and retirement levels for military personnel is unsustainable if the United States continues its worldwide mission against terrorists and allegedly rogue regimes. And it is also unsustainable if the U.S. seeks to return to a constitutional arrangement whereby the nation is actually defended by its military, not subordinated to it and being bankrupted by its costs.


Thomm , May 15, 2018 at 4:25 am GMT

Wait, so this is a lefty Democrat blog now, where The Nation is cited favorably?

Our men in uniform, particularly the grunts, make sacrifices that the others don't make. Sure, some officers are corrupt and the military manages to manufacture demand for its expensive products, but this article goes way too far.

Anonymous [123] Disclaimer , May 15, 2018 at 4:41 am GMT
US spends 4% of GDP on the military versus 2% in China, France, UK. That's high but considering how rich the US is, not unbearable. Weak article.
Cloak And Dagger , May 15, 2018 at 4:45 am GMT
This is how Rome fell.
Carlton Meyer , Website May 15, 2018 at 4:53 am GMT
Captains with just eight years in service rake in over $100,000 a year with nothing more than a four-year degree in history! Senior enlisted can also make over $100,000 a year with a high school diploma, plus free family health care and zero contributions to retirement. After just four years of service, a married GI is making more than the average American college graduate with 20 years of work experience! I wrote about this several years ago for those who still fall for the draft era "poor GI myth".

http://www.g2mil.com/pay.htm

Note our military spends billions of dollars on recruiting ads, but never mentions high pay. If they did, Congress may end the annual pay boost and lines would form at recruiting stations. Even most "experts" and reporters are confused because military lobbyists use the inflated ECI index (which includes increased health care and workers comp costs) rather than just wages, and pretend housing and food allowances are not income. Even the average military pilot earns twice a much as the average airline pilot, based on facts not Pentagon spin stories.

This why career servicemen love the military, they are making 2-3 times more than comparable civilians, and they know it! Read my article if you are confused. Then many of these "retirees" leave at age 40 with nice retirement, then get a regular federal job, and put in for every minor ache and pain and get a thousand or more dollars each month in VA tax free "disability" pay. Sleep Apnea (aka snoring) is a popular disability to claim worth up to 50%. Some get 100% disability but you wouldn't know it if you met them, and still work for Uncle Sam full time! The LA Times reported that after Senator John McCain announced he was fit to run for President, he was getting military retirement, 100% tax free VA disability, his Senator pay and social security retirement!

Now before some ignorant servicemen whine about those serving in combat zones or deployed on ships, note that fewer than 10% of GIs ever serve in a real combat zone, not the fake ones like Bahrain. They rate their pay, but not those working soft office jobs in Hawaii or San Diego or Florida. Keep in mind that we have a volunteer force, and our military must constant prune the career force since far too many want to stay in as long as possible. No one leaves because of poor pay, but because of political BS.

Dan Hayes , May 15, 2018 at 5:28 am GMT
@Thomm

Thomm:

I usually share your disdain for The Nation magazine. But in the vein of stopped clock correctness twice a day even it can sometimes be correct, witness its editor Steve Cohen's completely admirable efforts to lend sanity and substance to America's Russian foreign policy!

Backwoods Bob , May 15, 2018 at 6:42 am GMT
@Carlton Meyer

I've seen articles decrying that first-year married privates are eligible for food stamps. Because their housing, medical, and the cost of living differential are not "income". They're living on more than twice the reported income. So yeah, they have arranged the pay precisely so that they are not subject to any income tax, and are in some cases eligible for food stamps.

They have rec vehicles they can check out, boats and four-wheelers, snowmobiles and etc., special parks and land reservations, scenic cabins they can stay at with trifling fees or are free. Ours has a golf course that must be staggering for upkeep. Gyms, facilities for parties and events – stuff you'd pay a lot for in the private sector. The subsidized shopping is still there, but is not the huge discount it was at one time, at the bases in this state.

The state gives them all kinds of benefits like instant residency for hunting and fishing. The stores give them discounts. Military appreciation days.

And frankly it isn't your STEM people, business and tech fields going into the military. Their next best alternatives are a pittance by comparison. For who you are getting, the quality of recruit, this is well paid.

I don't mind that so much as having three times the size we need to defend our borders, which is what we should be doing and no more. Foreign entanglements, searching for monsters to destroy, acting as the world police – this is the main problem.

CalDre , May 15, 2018 at 6:56 am GMT
@Anonymous

4% of GDP, is it? Not sure about that but I do know it's 30% of federal tax revenue. Military spending is about $1 trillion, if you include all the various categories , per annum; whereas Federal receipts are about $3.3 trillion per annum.

So about 30% of all Federal tax receipts – 30% of the money stolen from me at gunpoint, which forces me to labor for months every year without pay – goes to corrupt contractors, murderers and war criminals to oppress and murder people and destroy property throughout the world in service to the Evil Empire, including, of course, Jew supremacist Israel.

So since you think it's so "bearable", you Evil Empire supporter, why don't you kindly give me back my 1 month of stolen labor every year to pay for your beloved Evil Empire's perpetual Campaign of Death, Oppression and Destruction?

LondonBob , May 15, 2018 at 7:19 am GMT
@Anonymous

Clearly is if you look at your debt to GDP and deficit.

Interesting because the US has its history as part of the English tradition of no standing armies, militias, all possible due to the favourable geography of having a strip of water, or moat as Shakespeare put it, to deter potential invaders. The US military really is a WWII and Cold War creation. That the US seems to be the only nation not have benefited from the end of the cold war dividend in reduced military spending is an impressive feat by lobbyists and neocon ideologues.

TheBoom , May 15, 2018 at 7:44 am GMT
For me the pay and benefits aren't the core problem. We are paying to destabilize the world, kill US citizens, kill civilians, increase terror all for wars that don't benefit the American citizenry as a whole in any way. At one time they might have been for corporations now they are for Israel.
Verymuchalive , May 15, 2018 at 8:22 am GMT
@Cloak And Dagger

You're spot on. By the Late Roman Empire, society was divided into 2 groups – the humiliores ( lower classes ) and the honestiores ( upper classes ). Soldiers belonged to the latter group, and most historians consider that the common soldier never had a higher status in any society.

History doesn't repeat itself exactly, but modern day America has largely followed the Roman route. Certainly, the sheer cost of the Roman Military was a factor in the decline and fall of the Roman Empire.

The Roman soldier had a much more dangerous period of military service than the risk averse modern American military. Roman veterans certainly earned their benefits.

myself , May 15, 2018 at 8:33 am GMT
One thing worth wondering about is:

What is the real "defense burden" (the percentage of our GDP spent on the military) sans bullshit accounting tricks and "reclassification" of expenses.

For example, if we used accounting methods as used in some of the more efficient, less bloated military establishments of our allies, what would be the actual cost to our economy of our defense spending?

For all we know, military expenditures may actually be back to Reagan Cold War percentage levels, or slightly more.

Anon [257] Disclaimer , May 15, 2018 at 9:27 am GMT
Article didn't mention the dependency allowance. I looked on military websites to find the amount but you have to be registered military to find the amount

There is a clothing allowance, why? And the military is heavily affirmative action Hispanic black and female I live near a big VA. Twice a day hundreds of VA employees drive right past my house. Almost all are black. I drive through the VA often. Most everyone I see is black except for the Indian immigrant Drs.

California vets get some kind of no down payment low interest mortgage. When they retire they can get a loan for $50,000 to use for setting up a business or buying rental property.

jacques sheete , May 15, 2018 at 10:40 am GMT
@Thomm

Our men in uniform, particularly the grunts, make sacrifices that the others don't make.

Based on my experience as a young kid, and observations as an old fart, I call BS on that unless "sacrifice" has acquired a new meaning on the street that I'm unaware of.

jacques sheete , May 15, 2018 at 10:48 am GMT
@Anonymous

US spends 4% of GDP on the military versus 2% in China, France, UK. That's high but considering how rich the US is, not unbearable. Weak article.

The US is rich? Living on borrowed, stolen and extorted money and we're rich? The US has become a huge third world strip mall republic, complete with an overstuffed and parasitic military, and you think we're rich?The whole murderous,mendacious, thieving, and morally and financially bankrupt enterprise is poor by any significant measure, so your "reasoning" is what's weak.

jacques sheete , May 15, 2018 at 10:56 am GMT
Rank 'Ol Rummie spoke the truth once and it happened one day before the towers were pulled.

Rumsfeld says $2.3 TRILLION Missing from Pentagon

"The adversary is closer to home; it's the Pentagon bureaucracy "

- Donald Rumsfeld on Sept. 10, 2001

PS: For those who don't know where the missile, err, "plane" hit the Pentagon on 9/11, do a tad of research and tell me, with a straight face, that it was some coincidence.

Verymuchalive , May 15, 2018 at 11:47 am GMT
@jacques sheete

Federal Debt $20 trillion, Accumulated Balance of Trade Deficit since 1990 $12 trillion ( unadjusted for inflation ). That's not even including State and Local Debt, never mind Private Debt.
The only thing preventing complete bankruptcy is that the Dollar is the World's Reserve Currency- for now. Once China and others start dumping US Treasury Bonds, that will be over.

Tbbh , May 15, 2018 at 12:01 pm GMT
@Backwoods Bob

Two of my friends own motorcycle dealerships in San Antonio. Gee. I wonder how they can sell so many, compared to dealers in towns without major military bases

Tbbh , May 15, 2018 at 12:07 pm GMT
@myself

We spend more than the next ten nations, COMBINED. To "defend ourselves" from goat herders that can't afford passports or air tickets. 800 bases scattered across the planet. But, thinking about it, folks like somalians have been invading the US OH. WAIT! Federal refugee programs have been importing somalis. NEVER MIND.

We fight them there so we can bring them here and put them on welfare/food stamps? Makes perfect sense.

DanFromCt , May 15, 2018 at 12:08 pm GMT
I was in the field and in a number of firefights during my year in Vietnam, 69 – 70, and I find the idea of some store or VA clerk thanking me for my service offensive as all get out because I know these well meaning strangers, who owe me nothing at all, are being played for fools to serve the interests of America's worst enemy, Israel and its American fifth column. I'm also disgusted by this new breed of soldier who's less any sort of manly patriot than a skin-headed, "muh brothers, muh mission" wind-up martinet who mistakes the vain daintiness of pumping iron as well as technical superiority's easy targets for manliness. As for the Pentagon, it's the mother of all bureaucracies whose leaders but for the costumes are no more warriors than the time-serving hacks in any other bloated bureaucracy, who couldn't care less, as the facts make clear, about sending young Americans to die and be maimed so the sons of their Israeli masters need not.
The Alarmist , May 15, 2018 at 12:12 pm GMT
I used to feel smug after jumping from the US military to banking in the knowledge that my starting pay was several multiples of my military pay and even outstripped that of the JCS heads who I served under.

Somewhere along the way, probably in the 2000s during the so-called War for Talent, Federal civilian and military pay got a significant uptick well in excess of what the KSAs (Knowledge, Skills, & Abilities) of these folks as measured by OPM and DoD, and there has been no looking back.

Giraldi might be right that the troops are overpaid, but that is just the tip of the iceberg that is the Military Industrial Security Academic Complex.

anon [846] Disclaimer , May 15, 2018 at 12:22 pm GMT
Defense spending is allegedly 3.6% of GDP ($700B / $19,000B) but is actually over 5% if you factor in the hidden Defense spending. VA benefits, over $100B, nuclear arsenal covered under Dept of Energy (my favorite) over $30B, Defense portion of debt service over $100B, and other places that I'd have to dig up.

Defense spending is over 30% of the budget, the low ball 15% is only if you include social security and medicare which you should not because that is covered by dedicated payroll taxes. If payroll taxes were eliminated, those programs would go away but the budget deficit would not be impacted. This is a trick that defense consultants play to make Defense spending look smaller.

Defense spending is over 50% if you also discount our annual debt service, this is why the $1.3T featured $600B for domestic vs $700B for Defense.

I thought that singling out military pay was a tad mean spirited. Capping pensions that disproportionately benefit Generals who then go onto consulting jobs for Defense contractors and get paid positions on FOX might be a good idea but I didn't like the tone of this column.

No serious person who says they care about budget deficits can approach them without looking at Defense Spending.
- Chris Chuba

Johann , May 15, 2018 at 12:31 pm GMT
One of the disturbing actions of the soldier worshipping conservatives is the Wounded Warrior scam which uses crippled and deformed GIs in ads aimed at the heartstrings of the American public. The fact that so many soldiers are returning from useless wars in dire condition should be the responsibility of the Department of Defense (War) and its Government which is responsible for the mayhem and violence in so many parts of the world not a subject for organized begging which often preys on the suffering of the young.
ChuckOrloski , May 15, 2018 at 12:44 pm GMT
Re; Mr. Giraldi's brave & unspoken words: "(ZUS military) Pay and benefits are way out of control"

With a long history of planning & implementation, below, presstv explains how radical "citizens" were headhunted & placed in control as to when & how our hallowed ZUS troop commanders do their Jewish job assignments.

http://www.presstv.com/Detail/2018/05/15/561763/Israel-gained-control-over-US-foreign-policy-by-placing-citizens-in-key-positions

Anonymous [405] Disclaimer , May 15, 2018 at 12:45 pm GMT
@jacques sheete

US is rich and the debt is high. Both can be true at the same time. But taxes are relatively low so if there is a government debt crisis paying down the debt would just involve raising taxes. Just look at GDP per capita US which is very high up there so I don't see how anyone can argue the US is not a very rich country.

Despite many problems, the US has many advantages like half the world's Ashkenazim who are very good at creating unbeatable new companies. Just look at how the half the 40 riches entrepreneurs under 40 in the US according to Forbes are Jewish. Jews are producing so much innovation in the US that it offsets a lot of the problems like military spending at 4% of GDP and less productive sub-populations.

JackOH , May 15, 2018 at 12:48 pm GMT
Good article, Phil. I served in the 1970s, tail end of Vietnam Stateside, and never heard a shot fired in anger. I am grateful for the G. I. benefits I received.

No institution in a representative democracy ought to be above measured criticism. I have a relative who volunteers at the local VA clinic, and there's some sketchy evidence that some patients with very good group health insurance benefits are working the system and getting VA treatment to avoid co-pays.

I personally found David Hackworth's criticism of the American military fairly persuasive. Deep bureaucratization, tunnel vision, advancing officers for their inoffensiveness and favor-currying chops, the whole mess.

Plus add the big three already mentioned by some folks above. (1) America's armed forces are a Petri dish for social engineering, (2) corruption, (3) the political mafia-zation of America's armed forces so that it's acting as a White House-directed quasi-mercenary "enforcer" for corporate interests and various other sovereign interests.

Tom Welsh , May 15, 2018 at 12:48 pm GMT
"An Air Force four-star general named Arthur Lichte was reduced in rank to a two-star in 2017 after he was found guilty of having raped a lower ranking woman officer".

You say he was ***reduced in rank*** for raping a female subordinate?

Why wasn't he given 50 lashes, a dishonourable discharge, and a prison sentence? Even a random civilian would get the prison sentence for rape. And for such a senior officer to commit a crime like that is, of course far, far worse.

DESERT FOX , May 15, 2018 at 1:22 pm GMT
Israel and their ziocons control every facet of the U.S. gov and have used the U.S. army as a proxy army of Israel to fight and die for Israel in the ME while they sit it out in their ivory towers in Tel Aviv and New York City and London.

To add to the tragedy millions of civilians have been killed in these wars for Israel in Iraq and Afghanistan and Libya and Syria and Yemen and various other places through out the ME, and all of this carnage for Israel.

Just like the Roman empire where the rulers paraded their conquering armies through Rome , Trump wants to parade his Israeli proxy armies through D.C. and take their review as a Caligula. Trump is a puppet of the zionists and Netanyahu and his controllers the ROTHCHILDS ie the RED SHIELD which is dripping with Americans blood.

Orwell was right, the wars never end in OCEANIA and we have become Oceania, and all because of our zionist masters.

Achmed E. Newman , Website May 15, 2018 at 1:33 pm GMT
That was a very good article with lots of facts that I was unaware regarding the various forms of compensation. I have not been in the miltary. I will tell you that I have seen how things work on the procurement end, and that is the real shitshow, moneywise. The amount of wasted money in personnel involved in trying to micromanage a contractor, the "generation" of paperwork that must weigh 10X vehicle max-gross-weight in order to sign off on it, and other things, ruin the job for the technician or engineer in any company making stuff for the US military.

It's very easy to spend other people's money. Everyone besides Socialists and Commies probably learned all that during his kindergarten years .

(BTW, that last sentence of mine brought up the only one (little tiny) thing that I didn't like about the article. You KEEP USING "his and her", "he and she", etc. Enough of that crap, please, Mr. Giraldi. Unz is one of a number of place on-line on which one doesn't have to be PC. He can write as he pleases. The rest of your English is very professional, so why this?).

Anyway, great article, just the facts and honest opinion without any hyperbole. Regarding your very last paragraph, BTW, it's not just that the army is so costly, but if America ever had to defend itself from one of the countries we buy parts from, cough, China , cough, cough, that'll be a laugh. We are operating on borrowed money, as Jack S (#16) stated, AND foreign supply lines. We're number 1! Yeah!

Achmed E. Newman , Website May 15, 2018 at 1:45 pm GMT
@Anonymous

Among the lots of good comments on the thread so far, yours is kind of an outlier, to put it nicely. No, you cannot be both rich and in debt (6 – 7 X more than your yearly income) at the same time. . There are perhaps different definitions of broke that people or families may use for themselves.

1) Out of spending cash – got assets, but awaiting more income before any spending can resume. That's not too bad – it just shows lack of foresight or bad luck.

2) Broke even – got some assets, but owe the same amount – income is about the same as expenditures expected. There are lots like this – they need to buckle down, but will probably be OK.

3) Flat broke – can't borrow anymore due to bad payment history, even to friends and family – not enough income to pay expenditures or even on this.

4) Broke like the US Feral Government – borrowing 1/3 of the money for the $4,000,000,000,000 budget each year, as only 2/3 can be collected via personal income/corporate income/excise/etc. taxes (just look near the back of the IRS 1040 instructions – they're not hiding this stuff). Total debt of $20,000,000,000,000 is 5 X the budget each year and 6-7 X the income collected yearly. It is > 100 % of the total GDP. There is no coming out of this hole without financial pain for almost everyone but those with a Challenger or other large/medium-cabin business jet with precious metals stashed on an island or S. American/Oriental country with a runway on your compound with armed guards.

Just raise taxes? Fuck you too.

SteveM , May 15, 2018 at 2:09 pm GMT
@Thomm

Sure, some officers are corrupt

"some"? Har-Dee-Har-Har. What percentage of people who separate from the military claim a "service related disability"? With that designation they not only get the retirement benefit bump but also set-asides for government jobs and contracts as well. Based on the number of service related disability claims by veterans, the United States must have the most physically fragile fighting force on the planet.

And in this age of stupid perpetual wars, every "disabled veteran" is assumed have been shot up in the Middle East when if fact it's more likely they tripped on the steps on the way back from lunch at Fort Leavenworth. That erroneous assumption of a combat related disability is great for milking benefits from a sympathetic public.

And there's more. Sleep apnea claims as a service related disability by veterans have exploded. Same with PTSD.

https://www.veteranslawblog.org/sleep-apnea-va-disability-rating/

https://www.disabilitysecrets.com/resources/disability/veterans-disability/make-ptsd-claim-va.htm

The web is saturated with advice on how to game the military disability system.

A vet I knew laughed as he told me he got a disability award for his knee. Only that injury came from playing too much basketball at his U.S. base. Another "disabled veteran" I know does Cross Fit to stay in shape. His most dangerous deployment was to southern Europe where he met his wife. And yes, he advertises his disability on his business web site and does qualify for government contract set-asides.

Too bad for the taxpayers though. Since the military has been sanctified by the powerful Pentagon/MSM "Warrior-Hero" propaganda engine, challenging out of control military benefits is a political and social third rail.

SteveM , May 15, 2018 at 2:09 pm GMT
@Thomm

The web is saturated with advice on how to game the military disability system.

A vet I knew laughed as he told me he got a disability award for his knee. Only that injury came from playing too much basketball at his U.S. base. Another "disabled veteran" I know does Cross Fit to stay in shape. His most dangerous deployment was to southern Europe where he met his wife. And yes, he advertises his disability on his business web site and does qualify for government contract set-asides.

Too bad for the taxpayers though. Since the military has been sanctified by the powerful Pentagon/MSM "Warrior-Hero" propaganda engine, challenging out of control military benefits is a political and social third rail.

[May 14, 2018] Netanyahu "Let's You and Him Fight", by Fred Reed - The Unz Review

Notable quotes:
"... I'd say the Saudis and the petrodollar are the main reason for the US trying to keep Iran poor and on the defensive. The Iranians will never accept American control over the Mideast oil supply, while the Saudis have signed on as long as we provide military protection. If the US ever allows the petrodollar to fail, its economy will crumble. That won't be allowed to happen without a fight. ..."
"... this creates an opening for a presidential campaign based on the slogan "no more Jewish wars." ..."
"... The Israelis and their American Jewish bros and worldwide Jewry assume that on averages, Iranians will be smarter and have a better work ethic than any Arabs, which means that if left alone. Iran could come to dominate the Moslem Middle East. And that easily could lead to Israel being made little more than a tiny dot wit nukes the US backs to the hilt. ..."
May 14, 2018 | www.unz.com

Why did the Cockatoo-in-Chief renege on the Iran deal deeply prized by Russia, China, France, Germany, England, and the European Union? Why did he deliberately damage relations with Europe and cost American workers many thousands of jobs at Boeing among others? Why do all of this to hurt a country that poses no danger to the United States?

Israel.

Israel, Israel. Israel. Israel.

Always Israel.

If Iran were a threat to the existence of Israel, things would be different. If Muslims conquered the Jews, they would presumably treat them as badly as Israelis, and very likely worse. It would be ugly in the extreme. To prevent this, use of the American military would be justified.

But Iran does not threaten the existence of Israel. It does threaten Israel's dominance in the Mid-East. Iran is far larger and more populous than Israel, strategically located, and has vast amounts of oil. It is a large market for many European products. By contrast, Israel is small and has nothing anyone needs or wants. Left to itself, Iran would become the dominant regional power. It moves fast in that direction now with burgeoning trade with Europe in, among many other things, airliners. With economic influence comes political influence.

Consequently Israel does not want Iran to prosper. If it can, Israel will use the American military to prevent this prospering. It will destroy America's relations with the rest of the world to prevent it. It is doing so.

As thinking people know, the twaddle about the Iranian's development of an atomic bomb is just that–twaddle. The Europeans know this, which is why they are not alarmed. The US government know it, since the intelligence agencies have repeatedly said that Iran does not have a program aimed at producing a nuclear weapon.

But: Whenever the American government, or those controlling it, wants to drive the US into a war, it invents a frightening danger and warns of it over and over and over until a poorly educated public believes it: The Maine, the Gulf of Tonkin, Iraq's WMD, the Iranian bomb. It's a frightening world, Washington tells us. Things go bump in the night. Boo.

Where does Trump fit into this? Although his supporters offer him as a masterly statesman, biographies, which few read, show him to be profoundly ignorant, incoherent, narcissistic, weak, and easily manipulated. He loves attention and craves praise. He is also corrupt. As a businessman he danced just this side of the law in many shady real-estate deals. All of this is documented, but few will read of it.

Some will say that this isn't true. Go back and look at the things he said during the campaign, the positions he was going to take before he was modified. He astonished people who worked in his White House not just by his lack of knowledge but his lack of interest in learning. We are ruled by a histrionic dwarf.

But, in a country with no checks and balances on presidential power, foreign policy is what he says it is, and America attacks whoever he wants it to attack.

So why did he ditch the Iran deal? There is of course anti-Jewish posting on the web to the effect that the Jews are manipulating the government to go to destroy Iran for the benefit of Israel. This doesn't hold water, or only a little water. Surveys have shown that American Jews favor the Iran deal more than do other Americans. This probably is because they are more attentive and better informed than the notoriously clueless US public. (e.g. JStreet and WashPost. ) But while "the Jews" didn't sink the Iran deal, a comparatively small number of Israel-firsters did. These are the Neocons, warlike and heavily Jewish, plus the Jewish lobby AIPAC plus a few Jewish billionaires. Collectively they determine American foreign policy, and not for the benefit of America–which, again, has nothing to gain and much to lose by being manipulated into a war that does not matter to America.

Members of AIPAC are often accused of dual loyalty. I don't think so, though it is the best we can hope for. They should recuse themselves, though of course they will not.

The assertion that America should fight only wars in the America interest will be called, sigh, anti-Semitism. It is not. Yes, there exists in some quarters an obsessive, grinding hatred of Jews. Historically this hostility has been common if not universal and has led to brutal pogroms. But it has nothing to do with war against Iran. The desire for America to have an independent foreign policy hardly suggests a Cossack mentality. There is no reason to let Israel and a small set of Israeli patriots in New York force policies much to the harm of the United States.

But this is not at all unlikely. In Washington–where I worked in journalism for decades–fear of Jews is so great that no one dares say what a great many are thinking. It gets ridiculous. I remember many years back interviewing in the Pentagon the general who headed the armor command, whose name I forget. In such interviews there is usually a babysitter present, often a major from public affairs, who tries to manage spin.

The general and I were chatting about tanks, in which we both had a technical interest. He commented that the Merkava, a home-brew Israel tank, was reasonably good but not in a class with the American M1. As inflammatory comments go, this was truly lame. Yet when I left, the babysitter came charging down the corridor to assure me that the general was not insulting the Israeli tank, the general didn't mean, and the major hoped I wouldn't think etc. It's that crazy.

Whether Trump believes what he says about Iran's imaginary lunge for a Bomb is not clear. In Washington it is routine to lie about this or that dreadful danger so as to herd the deplorables toward a desired folly–but is Trump herding or herded? He is clueless about things military and appears to have no grasp of technology. Geography is not his strong suit, as witness his invention of a country called "Nambia." Netanyahu and the Neocons outclass him by a wide margin and apparently drive him like a truck.

If Trump were an American President, he would tell the Israelis to fight their own wars with their own military. Is he? Watch.

Fred Reed is a retired news weasel and part-time sociopath living in Mexico with his wife and three useless but agreeable street dogs.


Bragadocious , May 12, 2018 at 7:49 pm GMT

If there's a column to be written that reflects the elite consensus of Western Europe and its sneering attitude towards the United States, Fred Reed is sure to write it. That is unless he's writing a column reflecting the elite consensus of Mexico City. He'll do that one too.
ThreeCranes , May 12, 2018 at 8:20 pm GMT
Where have you been hiding this Fred, Fred?

This hard-hitting, well-written article seems to have issued from a different pen than the one you usually wield. I'm not criticizing the other Fred as I enjoy reading his columns irrespective of my agreeing with what he may have said or left unsaid. But generally, the guy who writes under the pen name Fred is a little more circumspect in discussing IsraelFirsters, or so it seems to me. If I'm mistaken I'm sure the clamoring commenters will correct me by showing how this piece too, is just a backhanded Zionist ploy to lull me into letting my guard down etc.

pyrrhus , May 13, 2018 at 12:28 am GMT
If Iran were a threat to the existence of Israel, things would be different. If Muslims conquered the Jews, they would presumably treat them as badly as Israelis, and very likely worse. It would be ugly in the extreme. To prevent this, use of the American military would be justified.

Why is that? I thought you had gotten over the Policeman of the World syndrome, Fred.

NoseytheDuke , May 13, 2018 at 12:52 am GMT
Fred wrote that were the situation reversed the Muslims would treat the Jews even worse than the Jews treat them but where does he draw this presumption from? Iran is said to have the largest population of Jews in the ME outside of Israel and they even have representation in the Iranian parliament. Many of them are highly critical of Israel and don't consider it to be the real deal.

There have always been Jews living in the ME when the power equation was reversed and yet they stayed and they survived. Prior to the unrestrained violence of the Jews in the Nakba relations appeared to be quite cordial.

Rich , May 13, 2018 at 2:43 am GMT
The Israelis are always looking for enemies to fight, and Iran, as a large country with a decent sized military and deeply Islamic government, is a possible threat, but I don't think Israel is the main reason most American leaders are for keeping pressure on Iran . I'd say the Saudis and the petrodollar are the main reason for the US trying to keep Iran poor and on the defensive. The Iranians will never accept American control over the Mideast oil supply, while the Saudis have signed on as long as we provide military protection. If the US ever allows the petrodollar to fail, its economy will crumble. That won't be allowed to happen without a fight.
manorchurch , May 13, 2018 at 3:18 am GMT

Members of AIPAC are often accused of dual loyalty.

[Hollow laughter]

Members of AIPAC have only one loyalty: Israel.

Pat Kittle , May 13, 2018 at 6:56 am GMT
@Rich

Nice try, but the Saudi lobby doesn't run the news media, Hollywood, Wall Street or the government. You know perfectly well (((who))) does:

" I don't care if Americans think we're running the news media, Hollywood, Wall Street or the government. I just care that we get to keep running them."

( http://articles.latimes.com/2008/dec/19/opinion/oe-stein19 )
-- "Who runs Hollywood? C'mon" (Joel Stein, L.A. Times)

Brabantian , Website May 13, 2018 at 1:08 pm GMT
Trump's backing out of the Iran deal has raised the price of oil by 'escalating middle East tensions'. Saudis who sell oil are profiting, and they are barely-hidden good friends of the Israelis. Russians who sell beaucoup oil are profiting, and they are, despite what Unz's Saker-Faker says, good friends of the Israelis

Trump's buddies in US shale oil debt, are profiting and getting a bail-out, and they and Trump are good friends of the Israelis

The US petro-dollar is profiting and getting an extra boost of life, as higher-price oil-sales by Saudis and others get recycled into US dollars

Iran which sells oil is profiting, and they too may be ultimately in the game with the Israelis, 'the best enemy money can buy', like the old Soviet Union was for the US the UK economist Antony Sutton proving half a century ago that the 'Cold War' was a scam

Win – win – win, it seems – oil buyers such as Europe being the 'losers' – with some common soldiers and people, cannon fodder, being dead in the middle East, to make it all look legit

llloyd , Website May 13, 2018 at 1:31 pm GMT
Iran stuck rigorously to the agreement despite its humiliating and provocative nature. WTF does only Iran have to comply to this intrusive inspection on nuclear power? To appease Israel of course that doesn't lose any sleep over Iran's nuclear energy...
exiled off mainstreet , May 13, 2018 at 6:48 pm GMT
It would be extremely politically correct and would be excoriated, of course, but this creates an opening for a presidential campaign based on the slogan "no more Jewish wars." ...
Robert Magill , May 13, 2018 at 7:06 pm GMT

Why do all of this to hurt a country that poses no danger to the United States?

Israel.

Israel, Israel. Israel. Israel.

Always Israel.

Money.

Money.Money.Money.Money

Always Money.

Trump, King of the Deal, is looking forward to the 120+billion, Jimmy Carter took from Iran, earning interest in our vaults. Prediction: Trump reverses: rewrites the deal; keeps their Money, pleases us all.

https://robertmagill.wordpress.com/2018/05/12/handicapping-the-race-the-bet-is-onits-humankind-to-win/

KenH , May 13, 2018 at 8:18 pm GMT

Surveys have shown that American Jews favor the Iran deal more than do other Americans.

Maybe, but they're also not calling attention to the skullduggery and machinations of AIPAC, Bibi and and Likud party in trying to get another war started. Jews favoring the deal aren't going to rock the boat with their fellow Jews who are against it.

Trump is just Bibi's pawn like I feared he would be. I'm still in shock that Fred had the cajones to criticize Bibi and Israel and call them out for the hostilities and looming war with Iran . I figured he might try to pin it all on the alt-right just like the alt-right is the only thing standing in the way of racial amity between white and mestizo and a black-brown utopia in America.

Leist , May 13, 2018 at 9:24 pm GMT
Its been fascinating how in the latest propaganda campaign that Iran's nuclear weapons program has suddenly become real. Before, while this deal was being negotiated, almost all the world's intelligence agencies agreed that Iran was not producing nuclear weapons. Only the Israelis disagreed. The war-war-war-and-more-endless-war factions of the American deep state said Iran was making nuclear weapons, but even then the official intelligence estimates said they were not.

There is a lot of very slippery language around this. Before the deal, America and especially the pro-war media, had a way of talking about "Iran's nuclear program". This was a reference to Iran's legal and permitted civilian nuclear program, but done in a scary and threatening way that made the audience assume that it was about Iran's nuclear weapons, which is was not. Now, Trump takes this even further and rants and yells about "Iran's nuclear research" as if that was the same thing as a program producing nuclear weapons, which of course it is not.

Trump is destroying America standing in the world and tearing apart the trans-Atlantic alliance all over a mythical nuclear weapons program that the Ayatollah had banned as being "un-Islamic" and which all the world's intelligence agencies agreed that Iran did not possess.

Talk about very bad deals.

Sporting , May 13, 2018 at 9:25 pm GMT
"Trump is just Bibi's pawn like I feared he would be."

Technically, Trump and Bibi are both Sheldon Adleson's pawns, as the casino owner finances the campaigns of both.

manorchurch , May 13, 2018 at 10:44 pm GMT
@Sporting

Technically, Trump and Bibi are both Sheldon Adleson's pawns, as the casino owner finances the campaigns of both.

Adelson's money comes from productive Americans, as do the billion$ funneled to Israel from the US government. Thus do we finance our own destruction. Irony is hell, ain't it?

bluedog , May 13, 2018 at 11:29 pm GMT
@Shouting Thomas

You said it "he's an actor" Trumps a slime ball and he has a long record to prove it, as far as the N.Korea deal goes it will be a no go, because no matter how much Kim offers it will never be enough, and lets not even get into the fiscal mess with Trump only making it worse, for that too within its own time will straighten itself out, but not to our liking I'm sure.!!!

manorchurch , May 14, 2018 at 3:38 am GMT
@utu

"Adelson's money comes from productive Americans" who foolishly spend their money on gambling.

So sorry, no intersection between "productive" and "foolishly spend". Hey, look up "invidious" for me, will ya? My dictionary's broke.

chris , May 14, 2018 at 4:42 am GMT

But while "the Jews" didn't sink the Iran deal, a comparatively small number of Israel-firsters did.

Fair enough, Fred; but then, where are the voices of the rest of them ? You're not suggesting that "comparatively small number" of them are controlling the whole discussion, are you?

Unless we hear a clear protest from 'the rest of them' in the near future, I would rather posit that, in spite of their recorded support for the deal, they will tacitly acquiesce to Trump's actions to help build the 'greater Israel.'

Wally , May 14, 2018 at 6:06 am GMT
@KenH

"Trump is just Bibi's pawn like I feared he would be."

Imagine Hillary.

jilles dykstra , May 14, 2018 at 7:05 am GMT
It may be that Trump knows quite well that Kennedy was killed two weeks after he threatened Israel not to sell them arms any more, if they continued developing their atomic bomb. Avner Cohen,'Israel and the Bomb', New York 1998 An interesting aspect of the book is that this period of two weeks has been more or less buried.
sarz , May 14, 2018 at 10:53 am GMT
The author refers to common hatred of Jews, expressed in pogroms. I would give the quote but am unable to copy because of all the fancy software. But use your 'find in page' for "pogrom". Note that the word is Russian, meaning something like excessive violence.

That the author is talking off the top of his head is forgivable. We are most of us carrying the same load of crap. But it would be good to see the level of scholarship here at Unz equal to that at the Dailystormer, from where I get this quote:

In actual fact, the idea of pogroms in the Russian Empire, in which "thousands of Jews were slaughtered" has been utterly debunked. They've been debunked not by an obscure "Far Right" think-tank, but by Professor John Klier – a widely respected scholar and non-Jewish former head of the British Association for Jewish Studies who published his findings in a number of volumes via Cambridge University Press (I summarize Klier's findings here). Among Klier's findings, the most important of which can be found in Russians, Jews and the Pogroms of 1881-82 (2011) was that the vast majority of pogrom narratives were developed and disseminated by a single Prussian Rabbi – Yizhak Rülf.

According to Klier, Rülf specialized in "sensationalized accounts of mass rape." These accounts would then be disseminated in the Western media with the help of Jewish journalists, and used by groups like the British-based Russo-Jewish Committee to push for Western government 'action' against the Tsar.

Despite contemporary British government investigations which revealed that no rapes had occurred and perhaps only one or two murders had been committed throughout the Russian Empire, and because most of the general public will never hear about the research of Professor Klier, the myth of thousands of massacred Jews in eastern pogroms remains in the popular consciousness, and is obviously still very deeply embedded in the Jewish folk memory.

jilles dykstra , May 14, 2018 at 11:25 am GMT
@corstopitum

Cannot see why:
- EU is becoming irrelevant
- the USA must continue wars
On the contrary, the USA must stop spending huge sums on wars that just cost money. Both the USA and the EU are pretty much autarcic, EU trade with non EU countries is just some 5% of gross EU income. Do not know the figure for the USA, but it must be in the same order of magnitude. The dollar indeed is a huge problem, but what will happen if the USA no longer pays interest on and amortization of loans ? Not much, I suppose. A country cannot go bankrupt. Maybe China would have the biggest problem, the Chinese regime fails in making Chinese consume, they save. If export is no longer possible, huge unemployment will result.

Jake , May 14, 2018 at 11:27 am GMT
Fred is correct that Israel does not want Iran to prosper, which means that Israel would have finagled a plan to have the US destroy Iran even if Iran had not tinkered with nukes. It has to do with Arab vs. Indo-European. The Israelis and their American Jewish bros and worldwide Jewry assume that on averages, Iranians will be smarter and have a better work ethic than any Arabs, which means that if left alone. Iran could come to dominate the Moslem Middle East. And that easily could lead to Israel being made little more than a tiny dot wit nukes the US backs to the hilt.

Jews know that Arabs are like them Semitic, and the core-deep culture says to ally with 1 Arab nation is better for Jews. So Saudi Arabia is in. The Saudis would do virtually anything in order to be the top dog of the Moslem world, because then Saudis would destroy all political power tied to Shiites, and steal all oil wells controlled by Shiites, giving nearly 100% of it to Sunni Arabs.

The Jewish plan is to enable various Mohammedans to slaughter one another, which means they cannot be focused on Israel, and to use the US to supply the money and manpower to jump start every move and play it out.

Jake , May 14, 2018 at 11:38 am GMT
@jilles dykstra

JFK was murdered because he went against the Deep State, and that includes his desire to stop Israel from illegally developing nukes.

Jews began their war against the Kennedys because of Joe, who realized the machinations of various Brit Elites and American WASP Elites and Jews to make certain there would be a WW2. And, as makes perfect sense going back to the very beginning of WASP culture, the desires of Jews and WASP Elites were a perfect match.

Jake , May 14, 2018 at 11:40 am GMT
@jilles dykstra

If you cannot see why the US 'must' start endless wars, then you know far too little about WASP culture and the history of the British Empire.

Grahamsno(G64) , May 14, 2018 at 11:57 am GMT
https://www.theguardian.com/world/2018/may/14/israel-tells-palestinians-they-are-risking-lives-in-us-embassy-protests

Another massacre by the Chosen ones nothing to see here.

anarchyst , May 14, 2018 at 2:24 pm GMT
@Leist

If a nuclear device is "lit off" in an American or European city, it will have Israel's fingerprints all over it. Israel is desperate to keep the American money spigot running, as well as sabotaging the Palestinian "peace process" that the world wants it to take seriously.

In fact, if a nuclear device is "lit off" anywhere in the world, it will have come from Israel's secret nuclear "stockpile".

The "power outage" in Atlanta was a convenient excuse for Israel to perform a logistical "sleight of hand", as an Israeli plane was allowed to land and take off during the "power outage" without receiving customs clearance or inspection. This is one of many Israeli companies that possesses a "special exemption" granted by the U S government that frees it from customs inspections. Just maybe another one of Israel's nukes was just being pre-positioned, getting ready for "the big one". As most Americans are tired of all of the foreign wars being fought for Israel's benefit, another "incident" on American soil would be enough to galvanize the American public, once again, (just like WTC 9-11) to support another war for Israel's benefit. Israel's "samson option" is a real threat to "light one off" in a European or American city, if Israel's interests are not taken seriously.

Israel refuses to abide by IAEA guidelines concerning its nukes as they are already distributed around the world. Israel would not be able to produce all of them as most of them are not in Israel, proper. No delivery systems are needed as Israel's nukes are already "in place". Look for another "false flag" operation with the blame being put on Iran or Syria. You can bet that some Iranian or Syrian passports will be found in the rubble.

Israel also threatens to detonate nuclear devices in several US cities. Talk about total INSANITY; the so-called "Samson Option" is it.

As an aside, American "foreign aid" is prohibited from being given to any country that has not signed the "Nuclear Non-proliferation Treaty" or refuses to abide by "International Atomic Energy Agency" (IAEA) guidelines regarding its nuclear devices. Guess what?? Israel does not abide by EITHER and still gets the majority of American "foreign aid". This prohibition also applies to countries that do not register their "agents of a foreign government" with the U S State Department. Guess what?? Israel (again) with its "American Israel Political Action Committee" (AIPAC) still gets "foreign aid" in contravention of American law..

There are forty or so congressmen, senators and thousands of high-level policy "wonks" infecting the U S government who hold "dual citizenship" with Israel. Such dual citizenship must be strictly prohibited. Those holding dual citizenship must be required to renounce said foreign citizenship. Refusal to do so should result in immediate deportation with loss of American citizenship. Present and former holders of dual citizenship should never be allowed to serve in any American governmental capacity.

When Netanyahu addressed both houses of congress, it was sickening to see our politicians slobber all over themselves to PROVE that they were unconditional supporters of Israel just who the hell do they work for? Certainly not for the interests of the American people and the United States they should renounce their United States citizenship and be deported to Israel

Moi , May 14, 2018 at 3:38 pm GMT
Mr. Reed is quite wrong when he says this (but hardly surprising):

"If Iran were a threat to the existence of Israel, things would be different. If Muslims conquered the Jews, they would presumably treat them as badly as Israelis, and very likely worse. It would be ugly in the extreme. To prevent this, use of the American military would be justified."

Perhaps he needs to brush up on ME history:

For the record:

In 638 CE Palestine fell to the Muslims under Caliph Omar. To this day, many Jews refer to the arrival of the Muslims as a "liberation" for Omar gave them unfettered access to Jerusalem, which they had been denied under the Christian Byzantines. Omar was equally generous to the Christians. "Never in the sorry story of conquest up to that day, and rarely since, were such noble and generous sentiments displayed by a conqueror as those extended to Jerusalem by Omar." (Report by Sir William Fitzgerald on the Local Administration of Jerusalem, Jerusalem: Government Printer, 1945, p.4)

In 1187, Saladin liberated Jerusalem from the brutal Crusaders and invited the Jews they had expelled to return and practice their faith freely. (It is easy to understand why Palestine's indigenous Arab Jews were among Zionism's most ardent opponents.)

To quote Israeli Rabbi Menachem Froman, chief rabbi of the West Bank settlement of Tekoa, and a champion of inter-religious reconciliation: "[E]very Jew who learns the writings of the great sages – who, at the head of them all stands Maimonides – knows that our great thinkers wrote in the Arabic language, lived in Islamic states and participated with the great Muslim thinkers in the effort to explain the words of God, according to the paths of the sages and amidst the difficult bloody battles that we have had since the beginning of Zionism with the Muslims." We know that the war between the Jews and the Muslims is the work of the cursed devil. We know that Islam is named after peace." (Haaretz, September 18, 2006)

manorchurch , May 14, 2018 at 3:58 pm GMT
@Rurik

the 'petrodollar' / Federal Reserve Note / fiat debt slavery for the planet, is the weapon with which the Fiend menaces mankind.

There really isn't a petrodollar basis for the US economy. The edifice upon which the US economy is built is more of a consumer-dollar + welfare dollar + MI-complex dollar. Each of which has some share of a "petrodollar" component.

Rurik , May 14, 2018 at 5:28 pm GMT
@manorchurch

the Pentagon hit was the afo'menshun airplane.

for another time and place..

annamaria , May 14, 2018 at 5:53 pm GMT
@Jake

"The Jewish plan is to enable various Mohammedans to slaughter one another, which means they cannot be focused on Israel."

– This is known as Oded Yinon plan for Eretz Israel. A blueprint for the ongoing slaughter. So Jewishly "most moral."

Oded Yinon, "A Strategy for Israel in the Nineteen Eighties," Association of Arab-American University Graduates, Inc. Belmont, Massachusetts, 1982, Special Document No. 1, ISBN 0-937694-56-8

http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article33220.htm

annamaria , May 14, 2018 at 6:51 pm GMT
Meanwhile, the ongoing celebration in Jerusalem features a remake of Warsaw Ghetto story. The Palestinians, the native populations, play Warsaw Jews and the Israelis, mostly aliyah from various foreign countries, play SS and SD: https://www.zerohedge.com/news/2018-05-14/idf-kills-16-injures-600-gaza-us-celebrates-opening-jerusalem-embassy

"The Schutzstaffel (literally "Protection Squadron") was a major paramilitary organization under Adolf Hitler and the Nazi Party (NSDAP) The two main constituent groups were the Allgemeine SS (General SS) and Waffen-SS (Armed SS). The Allgemeine SS was responsible for enforcing the racial policy of Nazi Germany and general policing, whereas the Waffen-SS consisted of combat units within Nazi Germany's military. A third component of the SS, the SS-Totenkopfverbände (SS-TV), ran the concentration camps and extermination camps. Additional subdivisions of the SS included the Gestapo and the Sicherheitsdienst (SD) organizations. They were tasked with the detection of actual or potential enemies of the Nazi state, the neutralization of any opposition, policing the German people for their commitment to Nazi ideology, and providing domestic and foreign intelligence." https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Schutzstaffel
– Sounds like Mossad and the "most moral" IDF.

Warsaw Ghetto: "On January 18, 1943 the Germans suddenly entered the Warsaw Ghetto Within hours, some 600 Jews were shot and 5,000 others removed from their residences. The Germans expected no resistance, but the action was brought to a halt by hundreds of insurgents armed with handguns and Molotov cocktails.

Preparations to resist had been going on since the previous autumn. The first instance of Jewish armed struggle in Warsaw had begun. The final battle started on the eve of Passover of April 19, 1943, when a Nazi force consisting of several thousand troops entered the ghetto. After initial setbacks, 2,000 Waffen SS soldiers under the field command of Jürgen Stroop systematically burned and blew up the ghetto buildings, block by block, rounding up or murdering anybody they could capture." https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Warsaw_Ghetto
-- Sounds like the Menora offensive: https://www.foreignpolicyjournal.com/2013/05/03/israels-illegal-use-of-white-phosphorus-during-operation-cast-lead/ https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Warsaw_Ghetto

renfro , May 14, 2018 at 7:08 pm GMT
Another 43 unarmed Palestines killed today, 1009 wounded by Israelis during the protest over Israeli theft of their land...
Anthony Aaron , May 14, 2018 at 7:37 pm GMT
@anarchyst

I remember taking an immigration law class in law school. The question of dual citizenship came up, specifically as to when it began. Not surprisingly, it began when Israel became a nation so that jews could hold citizenship in both countries with impunity.

It was just another facet of the old practice of felons fleeing the United States before being prosecuted for their crimes by boarding an el al flight to israel. That ruse has been done many times especially for the rabbis who bugger or otherwise molest the children under their charge.

anarchyst , May 14, 2018 at 8:10 pm GMT
@Anthony Aaron

Not only that, Israel refuses to extradite any jew criminal who makes it to Israel

corstopitum , May 14, 2018 at 9:32 pm GMT
@jilles dykstra

I'm no expert but maybe these people understand better than you and I.

https://oilprice.com/Geopolitics/International/China-Prepares-Death-Blow-To-The-Dollar.HTML

Can you tell me why I shouldn't take this seriously?

DESERT FOX , May 15, 2018 at 12:08 am GMT
@Rurik

Hamas is a creation of Israels mossad just like ISIS aka AL CIADA which creation is shared by the U.S. and Israel and Britain ie the CIA and the MOSSAD and MI6.

1RW , May 15, 2018 at 12:39 am GMT
@Rich

As usual, it's both. Foreign Influencer #1 and Foreign Influencer #2 are terrified of Iran for a number of reasons. Frankly, if we ditch them both and ally with Iran we'd have more influence in the region. JK, Iran needs us far less than the other two. Anyway, go figure, our "friends" play us like a fiddle and get their problems solved.

[May 13, 2018] One Man s War: Bringing Iraq to the United States by Mark Wilkerson

Notable quotes:
"... A historically low percentage of our population -- less than half a percent -- actually serves in the military. Compare that to around 9% during the Vietnam War, and 12% during World War II. Remarkably few of us ever see combat, ever even know anyone who was in combat, ever get to hear firsthand stories of what went on or witness what life is like for such a returning veteran. Not surprisingly, America's wars now largely go on without us. There is no personal connection. Here in "the homeland" -- despite the overblown fears of "terrorism" -- it remains "peacetime." As a consequence, few of us are engaged by veterans' issues or the prospect -- essentially, the guarantee -- of more war in the American future. ..."
Jun 09, 2016 | www.truth-out.org

Memorial Day is over. You had your barbeque. Now, you can stop thinking about America's wars and the casualties from them for another year. As for me, I only wish it were so.

It's been Memorial Day for me ever since I first met Tomas Young. And in truth, it should have felt that way from the moment I hunkered down in Somalia in 1993 and the firing began. After all, we've been at war across the Greater Middle East ever since. But somehow it was Tomas who, in 2013, first brought my own experience in the US military home to me in ways I hadn't been able to do on my own.

That gravely wounded, living, breathing casualty of our second war in Iraq who wouldn't let go of life or stop thinking and critiquing America's never-ending warscape brought me so much closer to myself, so bear with me for a moment while I return to Mogadishu, the Somalian capital, and bring you -- and me -- closer to him.

Boom!

In that spring of 1993, I was a 22-year-old Army sergeant, newly married, and had just been dropped into a famine-ridden, war-torn country on the other side of the planet, a place I hadn't previously given a thought. I didn't know what hit me. I couldn't begin to take it in. That first day I remember sitting on my cot with a wet t-shirt draped over my head, chugging a bottle of water to counter the oppressive heat.

I'd trained for this -- a real mission -- for more than five years. I was a Black Hawk helicopter crew chief. Still, I had no idea what I was in for.

So much happened in Somalia in that " Black Hawk Down " year that foreshadowed America's fruitless wars of the twenty-first century across the Greater Middle East and parts of Africa, but you wouldn't have known it by me. That first day, sitting in a tent on the old Somali Air Force base in Baledogle, a couple of hours inland from the capital city of Mogadishu, I had a face-to-face encounter with a poisonous black mamba snake. Somehow it didn't register. Not really.

This is real , I kept telling myself in the six months I spent there, but in a way it wasn't or didn't seem to be.

After about a month, my unit moved to the airport in Mogadishu -- away from the snakes, scorpions, and bugs that infested Baledogle, but closer to dangers of a more human sort. Within a few weeks, I became used to the nightly rat-tat-tat of machine gun fire coming at us from the city. I watched the tracers streak by as we crouched behind our sandbagged fighting positions. We would return from missions to find bullet holes in the skin or rotor blades of our Black Hawk helicopters, or in one case a beer-can-sized hole that a rocket-propelled grenade (RPG) round punched cleanly through the rear stabilizer without -- mercifully -- detonating.

And yet none of it felt like it was quite happening to me. I remember lying on my cot late at night, not far from the flight line full of Black Hawks and Cobras, hearing the drone of low-flying American AC-130 gunships firing overhead for hours on end. The first boom would come from the seaward side of the field as the gunship fired its M102 howitzer. A few seconds later, another boom would mark the round's arrival at its target across town, sometimes with secondary explosions as ammunition stores went up. Lying there, I remember thinking that those weren't the routine training rounds I'd heard a hundred times as they hit some random target in a desolate training area. They were landing on real targets, actual people.

Two other memorable boom s come to mind -- one as we waited in the back of a sun-baked supply truck, heading out on a volunteer mission to give inoculations to kids at a Somali orphanage. Boom . The ground shook to the sound of one of our Humvees and the four Army soldiers in it being blown apart by the sort of remote-controlled bomb that would become a commonplace of insurgents in America's twenty-first century wars. And a second, the loudest during my six months there, as a generator perhaps 20 feet from our tent exploded into flames from an incoming RPG round that found its target in the middle of the night.

This is real . I kept saying that to myself, but truthfully the more accurate word would have been surreal . The care packages I was receiving, the Tootsie Rolls and Cracker Jacks and letters from my wife back home telling me how much she missed me might as well have been from another planet.

Our helicopters flew daily reconnaissance missions ("Eyes over Mog" we called them) above the Somali capital. We did battle damage assessments, checking out pockmarked buildings the AC-130s had targeted the night before, or the shot-up safe house that Somali warlord Mohamed Aidid -- our operation's target (just as the US would target Saddam Hussein, Muammar Gaddafi, and the leaders of various terror groups) -- had reportedly been using as a control center. Once a beautiful mansion, it was now riddled with thousands of bullet holes and TOW missile craters.

We flew over Mogadishu's bustling marketplace, sometimes so low that the corrugated metal roofs of the stalls would blow off from our rotor wash. We were always looking for what we called "technicals" -- pick-up trucks with machine guns mounted in their beds -- to take out. Viewing that crowded marketplace through the sight of a ready-to-rock M-60 machine gun helped reinforce the message that all of this was beyond surreal.

Lives were ending violently here every day, and my own life, too, could have ended at any moment. Yet it was just about impossible to believe that all of a sudden I was in the middle of a violent set of incidents in a third-world hellhole, the sort of thing you might read about in the paper, or more likely, would never hear about at all. You'd never know about our near-nightly scrambles to our fighting positions behind a pile of sandbags, as the AK-47s cracked and the tracers flew overhead. It wouldn't even register as a blip in the news back home. In some bizarre way, I was there and it still wasn't registering.

A Soldier Just Like Me

Just days after returning home from Somalia, I (like so many others) watched the footage of dead American soldiers -- at least one a Black Hawk crew chief -- being dragged through the streets of Mogadishu by cheering Somalis. For the first time, I found myself filled with a sense of dread, a profound that-could-have-been-me feeling. I imagined my mother looking at such a photo of me, of her dead son's body -- as someone's mother was undoubtedly doing.

If my interior landscape was beginning to shift in unsettling ways, if the war, my war, was finally starting to come home, I remained only minimally aware of it. My wife and I started a family, I got a civilian job, went to college in the evening using the GI Bill, and wrote a couple of books about music -- my refuge.

Still, after Somalia, I found myself drawn to stories about war. I reread Stephen Ambrose's blow-by-blow account of the D-Day landings, picked up Ron Kovic's Vietnam memoir, Born On The Fourth Of July , for the first time, and even read All Quiet On The Western Front . And all of them somehow floored me. But it wasn't until I watched Body of War , Phil Donahue's 2008 documentary about Iraq war veteran and antiwar activist Tomas Young, that something seemed truly different, that I simply couldn't shake the feeling it could have been me.

Tomas was a kid who had limited options -- just like me. He signed up for the military, at least in part, because he wanted to go to college -- just like me. Yes, just like so many other kids, too -- but above all, just like me.

He, too, was deployed to one of America's misbegotten wars in a later hellhole, and that's where our stories began to differ. Five days after his unit arrived in Iraq -- a place he deployed to grudgingly, never understanding why he was being sent there and not Afghanistan -- Tomas was shot, his spinal cord severed, and most of his body paralyzed. When he came home at age 24, he fought the natural urge to suffer in silence and instead spoke out against the war in Iraq. Body of War chronicled his first full year of very partial recovery and the blossoming of his antiwar activism.

Just a few weeks after the film's release, however, it all came crashing down. He suffered a pulmonary embolism and sank into a coma, awakening to find that he'd suffered a brain injury and lost much of the use of his hands and his ability to speak clearly. The ensuing years were filled with pain and debilitating health setbacks. By early 2013, he was in hospice care, suffering excruciating abdominal pain, without his colon, and on a feeding tube and a pain pump. Gaunt, withered, exhausted, he continued to agitate against America's never-ending war on terror from his bed, and finally wrote a " last letter " to former President George W. Bush and former Vice President Dick Cheney, airing his grievances, which got significant media attention .

When I read it, I felt that he might have been me if I hadn't lucked out in Mogadishu two decades earlier. Maybe that's what made me reach out to him that April and tell him I wanted to learn more about what had happened to him in the years between Body of War and his last letter, about what it meant to go from being an antiwar agitator in a manual wheelchair to a bedridden quadriplegic on a feeding tube and under hospice care, planning to soon end his own life.

A Map of the Ravages of War

When I finally met Tomas, I realized how much he and I had in common: the same taste in music and books, the same urge to be a writer. We were both quick with the smart-ass comment and never made to be model soldiers because we liked to question things.

Each moment we spent together only connected us more deeply and brought me closer to the self that war had created in me, the self I had kept at such a distance all these years. I began writing his story because I felt compelled to show other Americans someone no different from them who had had his life, his reality, upended by one of our military adventures abroad, by deployment to a country so distant that it's an abstraction to most of us who, in these days of the All-Volunteer Army, don't have a personal connection either to the US military or to the wars it so regularly fights.

A historically low percentage of our population -- less than half a percent -- actually serves in the military. Compare that to around 9% during the Vietnam War, and 12% during World War II. Remarkably few of us ever see combat, ever even know anyone who was in combat, ever get to hear firsthand stories of what went on or witness what life is like for such a returning veteran. Not surprisingly, America's wars now largely go on without us. There is no personal connection. Here in "the homeland" -- despite the overblown fears of "terrorism" -- it remains "peacetime." As a consequence, few of us are engaged by veterans' issues or the prospect -- essentially, the guarantee -- of more war in the American future.

Tomas understood the importance of sharing the brutal fullness of his story. For him, there were to be no pulled punches. When I told him I wanted others to learn of his harrowing tale, of his version of the human cost of war, that I wanted to help him to tell that story, he responded that he had indeed wanted to write his own book. He'd scrapped the project because he could no longer write, and even Dragon voice-to-text software wouldn't work because his speech had become so degraded after the embolism struck.

Instead, he shared everything. Tomas and his wife, Claudia, opened their lives to me. I slept in their basement. During my periodic visits, he introduced me to an expansive mind in a shrunken world, a mind that wanted to range widely in a body mostly confined to a hospital bed, surrounded by books, magazines, and an array of tubing that delivered medications and removed bodily wastes in a darkened bedroom.

"I need to be fed," he said to me one day. "Do you want to see what that's like?" Then, he lifted his shirt and showed me the maze of tubing and scars on his body. It was a map of the ravages of war.

He was unflinchingly honest, sensing the importance of his story in a country where such experiences have become uncommon fare. Like his comic book heroes Batman and the Punisher, he wanted to make sure that no one would have to endure what he'd gone through.

An All-Too-Real Life and Surreal Wars

Tomas Young's war ended on the night before Veterans' Day 2014 when he passed away quietly in his sleep. His pain finally came to an end.

Body of War By Phil Donahue, Ellen Spiro, The Real News Network | Film Veterans, We're Sorry for How Our Country Treated You By The Daily Take Team, The Thom Hartmann Program | Op-Ed Veterans Urge Presidential Candidates to Say No to Militarism

The bullets that hit him in the streets of Baghdad in 2004 brought on more than a decade of agony and hardship, not only for him, but for his mother, his siblings, and his wife. Their suffering has yet to end.

Stories of the reality of war and its impact on this country are more crucial now than ever as America's wars seem only to multiply. Among us are more than 2.5 million veterans of our recent conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan. We owe it to them to read their accounts -- and an increasing number of them are out there -- and do our best to understand what they've been through, and what they continue to go through. Then perhaps we can use that knowledge not only to properly address their needs, but to properly debate and possibly -- like Tomas Young -- even protest America's ongoing wars.

It would have been perfectly understandable for Tomas to have faced the pain, frustration, and failing health of his final years privately and in silence, but that wasn't him. Instead, he made his story part of our American record. To stay on top of important articles like these, sign up to receive the latest updates from TomDispatch.com here .

Mark Wilkerson spent eight years in the US Army as an AH-1 Cobra and UH-60 Black Hawk helicopter crew chief with the 3rd Infantry and 101st Airborne Divisions. He was deployed with the 101st to Somalia for six months in 1993. He is the author of Who Are You: The Life of Pete Townshend and co-wrote Pearl Jam Twenty . He has three children: Alex, Nick and Sam. He lives in Louisville, Kentucky, with his wife, Melissa. His latest book is Tomas Young's War (Haymarket Books).

[May 13, 2018] Possibility of a new war in Middle East the shoot the oil prices to $200 frighten Germany

Notable quotes:
"... Several years ago Putin made a speech at the UN in favor of upholding International Law I thought at the time this "diplomatic statesmanship" was going to be Putin's way of bring Russia back into equal power with the Europeans and the US. Some have wondered and been asking about Putin not being as aggressive as he could be in defending Syria and Iran. Putin's holding off on tough talk/action could be amassing more power in the end. Putin comes off as the voice of sanity..exactly what the Europeans want to hear and see. ..."
May 13, 2018 | www.unz.com

renfro , May 12, 2018 at 6:05 am GMT

Several years ago Putin made a speech at the UN in favor of upholding International Law I thought at the time this "diplomatic statesmanship" was going to be Putin's way of bring Russia back into equal power with the Europeans and the US. Some have wondered and been asking about Putin not being as aggressive as he could be in defending Syria and Iran. Putin's holding off on tough talk/action could be amassing more power in the end. Putin comes off as the voice of sanity..exactly what the Europeans want to hear and see.

As Europe turns away from the US they turn to Putin.

If anyone remembers all the Jew rags making fun of "old Europe" during the Iraq war run up and urging that the US break with them as outdated relics no longer needed in the new modern age -- this is what it was all about -- separating the US from its traditional allies who were not as subservient to Israel as the US. So .now we are down to the Jew plan Europe and sanity vr the US Orange Clown and his allies of midget Nazi Israel, Saudi and the UAE.

http://theduran.com/germany-begs-russia-to-pick-up-the-torch-that-us-has-dropped/

Germany begs Russia to pick up the torch that US has dropped

"Germany's Foreign Minister, Heiko Maas, who has a history of expressing anti Russian rhetoric relevant to Russia's presence in Syria as well as an alleged cyber attack on the German Foreign Ministry which Maas says that he 'has to assume stemmed from Russia', has turned an about face. He has traveled, for the first time, to Moscow to discuss international diplomacy, the Iran nuclear deal, peace talks on Ukraine, and Syria.

Maas met with his Russian counterpart, Sergei Lavrov, where he encouraged Russia to leverage its influence with Iran to help spur the Middle Eastern state in remaining committed to the nuclear deal, which Trump abandoned earlier in the week.

Germany's Foreign Minister, Heiko Maas, who has a history of expressing anti Russian rhetoric relevant to Russia's presence in Syria as well as an alleged cyber attack on the German Foreign Ministry which Maas says that he 'has to assume stemmed from Russia', has turned an about face. He has traveled, for the first time, to Moscow to discuss international diplomacy, the Iran nuclear deal, peace talks on Ukraine, and Syria.

Maas met with his Russian counterpart, Sergei Lavrov, where he encouraged Russia to leverage its influence with Iran to help spur the Middle Eastern state in remaining committed to the nuclear deal, which Trump abandoned earlier in the week.

Maas then declared that Germany was interested in bringing back the peace talks on the Ukraine, together with other European partners. Maas also pointed out that the Syrian conflict can't be settled without Russia, before contributing a wreath to the tomb of the unknown soldier, which is a dedication to Russian soliders who died fighting the Germans in WW2.

Deutsche Welle reports:

Germany's top diplomat Heiko Maas and his Russian counterpart Sergey Lavrov both called for the nuclear deal with Iran to be upheld on Thursday, during Maas' first official visit to Russia. The appeal marks a rare moment of unity between Moscow and Berlin just days after US walked out on the 2015 accord.

In Moscow, Maas urged Russia to influence Tehran and make it stick to the deal, which aims to limit Iran's alleged pursuit of nuclear weapons. The German foreign minister also said he was seeking details from the US on its plans for future sanctions against Iran
US President Donald Trump has shrugged off pressure from allies to keep the deal in place and called the accord "defective at its core." However, leaders of the UK, France, and Germany all contacted Iranian President Hasan Rouhani in the attempt to salvage the accord.

Germany's Chancellor Angela Merkel called Rouhani on Thursday to reaffirm Germany's commitment to the deal "as long as Iran continues to fulfil its obligations," said Merkel's spokesman Steffen Seibert. Merkel also said she was ready to negotiate about Iran's ballistic missiles and involvement in Syria and Yemen.

Angela Merkel is also set to visit Russia next week.

Visiting Moscow on Thursday, Germany's top diplomat Maas suggested reviving the peace talks between Germany, France, Ukraine and Russia on the conflict in eastern Ukraine. Lavrov responded by saying Russia was "ready to consider" this offer.

Maas also called for "honest dialogue" with Moscow and for Russia to be included in global diplomacy, despite its differences with Berlin. Maas admitted that the conflict in Syria "cannot be solved without Russia."

The German diplomat also laid a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier in Moscow, which is dedicated to the Soviet soldiers killed during World War II.

Also in a bid to get Russia to assume a leadership position relative to preserving the nuclear deal, and by extension, the European economy, Merkel got on the phone with Russian President Vladimir Putin, where he mutually voiced his concern over Trump's action, and where Merkel also came forward about the situation in Syria.

TASS reports:

BERLIN, May 11. /TASS/. Federal Minister for Economic Affairs and Energy Peter Altmaier has confirmed that he will visit Moscow at the beginning of the next week, he said in an interview with German radio station Deutschlandfunk released on Friday.

"I will follow my colleague [German Foreign Minister Heiko] Maas, who attended negotiations in Moscow yesterday. I will be there on Monday and Tuesday, and Chancellor [Angela Merkel will visit Sochi -- TASS] during the week," Altmaier said.

continued,,,,,,

[May 13, 2018] Confusion over Netanyahu visit to Moscow and Putin passivity over recurrent Israeli strikes of Syria territory

Notable quotes:
"... Suppose there were no Russia in Syria, what would have happened? Libya would have been the fate. Most likely US would have recognized Golan Ht as Israel's. Oil harvesting companies would become more visible. Lebanon would have been in flames. Nothing else in ME. Some more terror attacks in EU may be. ..."
"... The real purpose of the Donald's missile-rattling is nothing more than helping Bibi Netanyahu keep his coalition of right wing religious and settler parties (Likud, United Torah Judaism, Shas, Kulanu and the Jewish Home) together, thereby maintaining his slim 61-vote majority in the 120-seat Knesset. ..."
"... Netanyahu's malefic political glue is the utterly false claim that Iran is an "existential threat" to Israel because it is hell-bent on getting the bomb. ..."
"... As a matter of record, of course, Netanyahu has been saying this since the early 1990s and he has always been wrong because there were never any facts or logic to support his blatant fear-mongering. ..."
May 13, 2018 | www.unz.com

Originally from: The Skripals will most likely never be allowed to talk, by The Saker - The Unz Review

There have been major developments this week, all of them bad, including Putin re-nominating Medvedev as his Prime Minister, and Bibi Netanyahu invited to Moscow to the Victory Day Parade in spite of him bombing Syria, a Russian ally, just on the eve of his visit. Once in Moscow, Netanyahu compared Iran to, what else, Nazi Germany . How original and profound indeed! Then he proceeded to order the bombing of Syria for a second time , while still in Moscow. But then, what can we expect from a self-worshiping narcissist who finds it appropriate to serve food to the Japanese Prime Minister in a specially made shoe ? The man is clearly batshit crazy (which in no way makes him less evil or dangerous). But it is the Russian reaction which is so totally disgusting: nothing, absolutely nothing. Unlike others, I have clearly said that it is not the Russian responsibility to "protect" Syria (or Iran) from the Israelis. But there is no doubt in my mind that Netanyahu has just publicly thumbed his nose at Putin and that Putin took it. For all my respect for Putin, this time he allowed Netanyahu to treat him just like Trump treated Macron. Except that in the case of Putin, he was so treated in his own capital. That makes it even worse.

[Interestingly, while whining about "Nazi Iran" Netanyahu did say something truly profound and true. He said " an important history lesson: when a murderous ideology emerges, one has to push back against it before it is too late". That is indeed exactly what most people across the world feel about Israel and its Zionist ideology but, alas, their voice is completely ignored by those who rule over them. So yes, it sure looks to me like it is becoming "too late" and that the consequences for our collective cowardice -- most of us are absolutely terrified from speaking the plain truth about our Zionist overlords - will cost us all a terrible price.]

Then, of course, there is Donald Trump pulling out of the so-called Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) in spite of Iran's full compliance and in spite of the fact that the US does not have the authority to unilaterally withdraw from this multilateral agreement. But being the megalomaniac that he is, and not to mention the spineless lackey of the Israel Lobby, Trump ignored all that and thereby created further tensions between the US and the rest of the world whom the US will now blackmail and bully to try to force it to support the US in its rabid subservience to Israel. As for the Israelis, their "sophisticated" "strategy" is primitive to the extreme: first get Trump to create maximal tensions with Iran, then attack the Iranians in Syria as visibly and arrogantly as possible, bait the Iranians into a retaliation, then bellow "OI VEY!!!" with your loudest voice, mention the Holocaust once or twice, toss in a "6 million people" figure, and get the US to attack Syria.

How anybody can respect, nevermind admire, the Israelis is simply beyond comprehension. I sure can't think of a more contemptible, nasty, psychopathic gang of megalomanical thugs (and cowards) than the Israelis. Can you?

Nonetheless, it appears undeniable that the Zionists have enough power to simultaneously force not one, but two (supposed) superpowers to cave into their demands. Not only that, they have the power to do that while also putting these two superpowers on a collision course against each other. At the very least, this shows two things: the United States has completely lost its sovereignty and is now an Israeli protectorate. As for Russia, well, she is doing comparatively better, but the full re-sovereignization the Russian people have voted for when they gave their overwhelming support to Putin will not happen. A comment I read on a Russian chat put it: "Путин кинул народ -- мы не за Медведева голосовали" or " Putin betrayed the people -- we did not vote for Medvedev ". I am not sure that "betrayed the people" is fair, but the fact that he has disappointed a lot of people is, I think, simply undeniable.

It is still way too early to reach any conclusions at this point, and there are still way too many unknown variables, but I will admit that I am very worried and that for the first time in 4 years I am having major doubts about a fundamental policy decision by Putin. I sure hope that I am wrong. We will find out relatively soon. I just hope that this will not be in the form of a major war.

animalogic , May 11, 2018 at 8:14 am GMT

Paul Craig Roberts has repeatedly, for some years now, questioned Putin's apparent willingness to bend over backwards to placate his "partners" in the West.

PCR has maintained consistently that the West can not be trusted, that Russia's attempts at accommodation are taken as signs of weakness, acting only to embolden the West in its continuing vicious assaults.

Of course, Russia is playing for time: hoping that over time the strategic tables will increasing tip in its own & China's etc favour.
However, I suspect Saker & PCR are right: further submission will only lead to ever more vicious attacks. This is made all the worse by China's unwillingness to assert itself internationally as the 2nd largest economic power. (As if it can't see the US strategy, via tariffs etc to retard, if not destroy its future economic development)

One might have a tiny mite of hope that the West might ultimately act sanely. However, with the Zionists now pulling all the strings sanity is over & out.

Momus , May 11, 2018 at 8:20 am GMT
Netanyahu is regarded in Washington, and perhaps also Moscow, as almost Churchillian for his efforts to protect Israel and by extension the region and the US.

Who among us wants horizontal nuclear proliferation and a nuked up Iran armed with ICBM's?

Intelligent Dasein , Website May 11, 2018 at 9:45 am GMT
I've been
Intelligent Dasein , Website May 11, 2018 at 9:45 am GMT
I've been waiting to hear your take, Saker, since things are very bad indeed. I did not like what I saw happen on May 9th. Here is my very abbreviated take on it.

Bibi knows that he's pulled Trump fully into the Israeli orbit. He as much as told Putin he would attack Syria and dared him to do anything about it. If Putin responded with force, that would provide Israel and America with all the provocation they need to go all-in against Syria, Iran, and Russia, which is what the Ziocons were hoping to accomplish anyway. Putin, seeing all this and being the better man, can only sit back and take it. For now.

Bibi pissed in Putin's face and nobody could do a thing about it. But the whole world saw what happened and nobody with half a brain is on the side of the Israelis. I'm no longer upset that Putin didn't respond. He has admirable restraint and patience. The very hand of God Himself will move against the Israelis for all their crimes and treachery, and Putin will still be one of His chief instruments.

Robert Magill , May 11, 2018 at 10:01 am GMT

How anybody can respect, nevermind admire, the Israelis is simply beyond comprehension. I sure can't think of a more contemptible, nasty, psychopathic gang of megalomanical thugs (and cowards) than the Israelis. Can you?

Yes I can, Saker, you live among them.

Then, of course, there is Donald Trump pulling out of the so-called Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) in spite of Iran's full compliance and in spite of the fact that the US does not have the authority to unilaterally withdraw from this multilateral agreement

.

See Club Orlov http://cluborlov.blogspot.com/ 5/10 regarding the 120+ billion of Iranian money we hold in dollars the dead broke US gets to keep by pulling out of the deal.

https://robertmagill.wordpress.com/2018/04/30/and-then-we-were-capitalists-or/

Rafael Martorell , May 11, 2018 at 10:23 am GMT
Good call. That is why we follow you Saker. It is the responsability of the american men to rebel and fix this goverment.

Im from cuba and the worst part here is that we have been delivered to be control and saked by people that we took the lunch from them when we where kids,in the school yard.

The Scalpel , Website May 11, 2018 at 11:32 am GMT
@utu

Agree. Putin seems to have rolled over and is crying uncle. Sad. Perhaps he is waiting until his new weapons are fully stockpiled before he makes any serious attempts to defend -- ultimately -- himself and his nation.

Without Russia putting some brakes on the Empire's unopposed oppressions, there is little hope for truth, justice, etc. in the world. There is no attempt to print the truth in national publications (that has been going on for a long time), and increasingly, little attempt to hide the fact that they are not printing the truth. The masses, instead of rebelling against obvious lies, seem to have internalized doublethink and do not have any significant impulse to rise up and defend their own interests. The propaganda is too thick, too strong, and too unopposed. Things look grim.

utu , May 11, 2018 at 11:45 am GMT
@Momus

Who among us wants horizontal nuclear proliferation and a nuked up Iran armed with ICBM's?

I think that would be a good check of Israel's power that could stabilize the ME and return to the path of development that existed there still till early 1980s when the process of destabilization began which was a part of the Yinon plan. If Israel remains the absolutely dominant power people in ME countries will be allowed to live in Hobbesian chaotic world only where they will be encouraged to engage in ethnic and sectarian fighting forever.

Anatoly Karlin , Website May 11, 2018 at 11:54 am GMT

How anybody can respect, nevermind admire, the Israelis is simply beyond comprehension.

Why not? Israel has been successfully expanding its territory, and getting two superpowers to cave into its demands (Saker's own words). That is pretty admirable in my book. This is certainly worth of both respect and admiration, even if one otherwise wishes to see Israel burn in a sea of atomic fire.

Anyhow, there's no reason for Russia to care. Increased American tensions with Iran will raise the price of oil. Also a reminder that the Kremlin couldn't care less about American murders of Russian mercenaries. So in what world will they concern themselves with Iranian ones.

A comment I read on a Russian chat put it: "Путин кинул народ -- мы не за Медведева голосовали" or "Putin betrayed the people -- we did not vote for Medvedev".

Ah yes, the сирийские братушки ("Syrian brothers"). Perhaps Western Russophiles consider them such, but few Russians do.

So The Saker is correct, Putin did not betray "his" people. (Well, he did, but that happened in 2014, not now).

utu , May 11, 2018 at 11:59 am GMT
@Intelligent Dasein

I'm no longer upset that Putin didn't respond. He has admirable restraint and patience. The very hand of God Himself will move against the Israelis for all their crimes and treachery, and Putin will still be one of His chief instruments.

This is your wishful thinking talking. You are still upset with Putin and you should be. May 9 parade with Netanyahu and bombing in Syria really looked very bad. To me it signified Putin's capitulation. At least it is the end game and Russia realized she was outplayed as she is apparently not ready to go all the way with the nuclear blackmail. Putin will stay put waiting for the stupid World Cup while Netanyahu will be escalating or some face saving measure will be found for Russia to withdraw from Syria or Russia will be invited to be a part of occupational government there.

Chinese looking from afar probably are disappointed but they never trusted Russian corrupt elite staying the course.

Passer by , May 11, 2018 at 6:20 pm GMT
Ex-Finance Minister Kudrin to head Accounts Chamber: http://tass.com/economy/1003887
anon [228] Disclaimer , May 11, 2018 at 10:28 pm GMT
@Anatoly Karlin

Suppose there were no Russia in Syria, what would have happened? Libya would have been the fate. Most likely US would have recognized Golan Ht as Israel's. Oil harvesting companies would become more visible. Lebanon would have been in flames. Nothing else in ME. Some more terror attacks in EU may be.

But would these have changed the internal dynamics within US ? No It would not. US would still be going down the path it has been and that path would still be what it is today at home and abroad.

Social anarchy, takeover of Democrats by non-whites , takeover of GOP by religious militant and bipartisan tax cutting for pro big business will continue unhindered . Is it good? No. But good for the destruction of the country. That is good . ME without USA would then look like no different until Russia also faces the same fate that has happened to Wiemar Germany and Egyptian/ Persian in the historical past.

ME Shoa will have to wait for few more decades

M7 , May 12, 2018 at 1:14 am GMT
How about Putin showing Bibi what is in store for who harms Russia ? I can see Putin talking in symbols.
jim76 , May 12, 2018 at 1:38 am GMT
on another note after seeing shabas putin next to netanyahu holding picture of a commie terrorist commissar let me say Saker the "ukronazis" have the stalinist russians pegged right thank God they left Russia some hope for a jew free state
https://news.antiwar.com/2018/05/11/putin-backs-off-giving-syria-s-300-systems-after-netanyahu-meeting/

De-escalation!

Realist , May 12, 2018 at 8:19 am GMT
@animalogic

Paul Craig Roberts has repeatedly, for some years now, questioned Putin's apparent willingness to bend over backwards to placate his "partners" in the West.

The problem isn't bending over backward .it's bending over forward.

Realist , May 12, 2018 at 8:22 am GMT
@Momus

Netanyahu is regarded in Washington, and perhaps also Moscow, as almost Churchillian for his efforts to protect Israel and by extension the region and the US.

Protecting Israel does nothing for the US.

El Dato , May 12, 2018 at 11:45 am GMT
https://theintercept.com/2018/05/11/american-saudi-arabia-weapons-deal-yemen-uae/

I wonder what Saudi Arabia and the UAE could want with 60'000 precision-guided munitions?

El Dato , May 12, 2018 at 12:21 pm GMT
Rather OT, but still. Probably worthy of Unz-topping:

The remarkable disappearing act of Israel's car-bombing campaign in Lebanon or: What we (do not) talk about when we talk about 'terrorism'

"With Sharon's backing, terrible things were done. I am no vegetarian, and I supported and even participated in some of the assassination operations Israel carried out. But we are speaking here about mass killing for killing's sake, to sow chaos and alarm, among civilians, too. Since when do we send donkeys carrying bombs to blow up in marketplaces?"

-- Mossad officer, quoted in Ronen Bergman's Rise and Kill First: The Secret History of Israel's Targeted Assassinations

Anomie.

AP , May 12, 2018 at 5:11 pm GMT
@Felix Keverich

Ukrainian president and prime-minister are both Jews

Poroshenko being (half-) Jewish is fake news. Allegedly his father was Jewish and changed his surname. Actually this is his father:

https://ru.wikipedia.org/wiki/Порошенко,_Алексей_Иванович

The family originate from a Russian garrison-town on the Romanian border which had been populated by Ukrainians, Russian, Bulgarans, and no Jews.

There is even fake news that Parubiy is Jewish!

Both Poroshenko's parents are ethnic Ukrainians and he is an Orthodox Christian.

All the Ukrainian olygarchs, with the sole exception of Ahmetov, are Jews

Richest people in Ukraine:

Poroshenko -- Ukrainian
Akhmetov -- Tatar
Boholiubov -- Jewish
Tyhypko -- Ukrainian
Korban -- Jewish
Kosiuk -- Ukrainian
Zhevago -Russian
Novinsky -- Russian, major supporter of Russian Orthodox Church
Kolomoysky -- Jewish
Pinchuk -- Jewish
Tymoshenko- 1/2 Ukrainian, 1/4 Latvian, 1/4 Jewish (1/4 Jewish isn't Jewish)

So 4/11 are Jewish.

What is Russia's ratio?

Svigor , May 13, 2018 at 3:03 am GMT

[Interestingly, while whining about "Nazi Iran" Netanyahu did say something truly profound and true. He said "an important history lesson: when a murderous ideology emerges, one has to push back against it before it is too late". That is indeed exactly what most people across the world feel about Israel and its Zionist ideology but, alas, their voice is completely ignored by those who rule over them. So yes, it sure looks to me like it is becoming "too late" and that the consequences for our collective cowardice -- most of us are absolutely terrified from speaking the plain truth about our Zionist overlords - will cost us all a terrible price.]

Add to that the Jews' other genocidal favorites; diversity, multiculturalism, open borders, and anti-nationalism-fur-de-goyim.

Of course, Saker and his fellow cucked "Russian nationalists" don't add them, which is part of the reason that I'm indifferent to Russian nationalists anymore.

Then, of course, there is Donald Trump pulling out of the so-called Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) in spite of Iran's full compliance and in spite of the fact that the US does not have the authority to unilaterally withdraw from this multilateral agreement.

Let's just say I'm not taking flatheads' word on this one.

In the meantime, I want to refocus on the Skripal case.

Only took you like a thousand words to get around to the point; congratulations.

Svigor , May 13, 2018 at 3:08 am GMT
@animalogic

This is made all the worse by China's unwillingness to assert itself internationally as the 2nd largest economic power. (As if it can't see the US strategy, via tariffs etc to retard, if not destroy its future economic development)

In reality the US strategy is now to be a bit less than a total globalist-run whorehouse. Which will probably be changed back with the next new president. China's main concern will be internal stability and security for the foreseeable future.

Svigor , May 13, 2018 at 3:13 am GMT
@Momus

Who among us wants horizontal nuclear proliferation and a nuked up Iran armed with ICBM's?

Who among us wants to admit that the ship has kinda sailed, given Israeli and Pakistani nukes?

Biff , May 13, 2018 at 4:58 am GMT
@Momus

Who among us wants horizontal nuclear proliferation and a nuked up Iran armed with ICBM's?

I would rather see Iran with nukes than Israel. The world would be a better place.

jilles dykstra , May 13, 2018 at 6:11 am GMT
One indeed can admire how a few thousand jews wield such power. I consider the rest of jewry as their victims.
But then, why not admire Hitler, he was on his own.
In both cases, disaster struck.

Jews still do not see that the present situation in the USA resembles the Weimar Republic. Henry Ford knew this quite well 'in the end most Jewish enterprises fail through overconfidence'. Possibly the first time was when they were, as is asserted, implicated in the murder of the Roman emperor. Rome twice sent big armies to Palestine. If Rome also invented Christianity to undermine them, it remains an interesting theory.

Daisy , May 13, 2018 at 6:11 am GMT
@Intelligent Dasein

I am inclined to agree with you Putin is smarter and would not/cannot fall for the bait. I believe history will confirm that he will save the human race from total annihilation that we possibly face in months/years to come. I was hoping that Trump would also be a force for good but my view is changing as each day passes. I do not understand the subservient position that the US takes with Israel. Yes there is an aggressive Zionist faction who control America and yes nobody dares speak out against them but there must come a time when enough is enough. Unfortunately if Trump meant it when he said he would drain the swamp he has been prevented from doing so.

Sam J. , May 13, 2018 at 6:55 am GMT
I wouldn't be too hard on Putin. I have a whacked theory that the Jews see the control of the USA slipping. 9-11 was a huge screw up and more and more people know. They had talked of moving to India or China but I don't think that will work. Neither will allow the same stunts they have pulled around Whites. I think the psychopathic Jews are breed to be a parasite on the White Man and it will never work elsewhere. So they're fucked. What can they do? Well if you're a psychopath then the best thing to do would be to start a China/Russia vs. USA nuke war and while this goes on nuke the Europeans, Arabs and maybe a little germ warfare thrown in for good measure. You sit in the middle and hunker down then start over.

Now this may be completely crazy but psychopaths are crazy by most peoples definition and the above is perfectly logical. Maybe Putin doesn't think of it in directly these terms like I laid out but he can't help but notice that these animals are off, a lot. The Jews position gets worse every single day. They will have no luck at all disarming the Americans and the internet, despite their censorship, can;t be completely closed down. Their media platform is failing. No one believes what they say.

We should get rid of the Jews. Peacefully if we can but by any means necessary. Jewish populations upon moving into another territory are in no way distinguishable from a tribe of psychopaths over the long term. No one wants to live with psychopaths.

El Dato , May 13, 2018 at 7:10 am GMT
@Svigor

Let's just say I'm not taking flatheads' word on this one.

Reminder that this is the task of the IAEA.

Which sadly doesn't have the permission to check Israel's nuclear 'nads.

Monty Ahwazi , May 13, 2018 at 7:33 am GMT
Mr Saker,
I agree with your first part of the article and if I may add, Putin is a corrupt capitalist much like his brother in the US, Trump! They do love wealth and power so much that they both are prime targets for corruption by the wealthy Z's. Now that they both have become pawns and subservient to a third party, the Z's are dancing in street for taking control of the 2 superpowers! The one point that I'd disagree with is about your concerns of the 2 super powers having to come closer to a potential military conflict! Since a third party has taken control of the two superpowers the 2 countries are NOT allowed to challenge each other militarily because there's zero or even less than zero benefits for the real people who are in charge!
chris , May 13, 2018 at 9:09 am GMT
@yurivku

It was a real stab in the back for our allies and that's really hard to see.

I definitely see yours and the Saker's arguments in making this point, however, personally, it all looks to me like act 1 of a bigger play. Like Trump, Putin seems to make his concessions up front, but there must, by necessity be a payback concession somewhere down the road; if their allowed survival itself isn't the original concession already.

The nature of the understanding between Russia and Israel, which has not been covered anywhere in the news, must ultimately not be so difficult to determine for journalists investigating it, if such journalists actually existed.

None of them has any interest in covering this, however, because: the west can't deviate from the onslaught of Russian vilification; Russia, doesn't want to show its vulnerabilities and Israel doesn't want to show its power.

But I suspect some of this will come to light as the next phase of operations against Iran.

El Dato , May 13, 2018 at 9:40 am GMT
David Stockman got it:

https://original.antiwar.com/David_Stockman/2018/05/11/the-deep-state-first-madness-on-both-ends-of-the-acela-corridor/

The mere threat of a military attack from the White House is madness because it arises from blatant lies that have absolutely nothing to do with US national security. Nor, for that matter, the security of any other country in the region, including Saudi Arabia and Israel.

The real purpose of the Donald's missile-rattling is nothing more than helping Bibi Netanyahu keep his coalition of right wing religious and settler parties (Likud, United Torah Judaism, Shas, Kulanu and the Jewish Home) together, thereby maintaining his slim 61-vote majority in the 120-seat Knesset.

Netanyahu's malefic political glue is the utterly false claim that Iran is an "existential threat" to Israel because it is hell-bent on getting the bomb.

But that's where the whopper comes in. It amounts to the ridiculous postulate that Iran is so fiendishly evil that if it is involved in the nuclear fuel cycle in any way, shape or form -- presumably even just operating a uranium mine -- it is only a matter of months before it will have a bomb.

As a matter of record, of course, Netanyahu has been saying this since the early 1990s and he has always been wrong because there were never any facts or logic to support his blatant fear-mongering.

But maybe this will blow the top on the economic fiction that's been going on since at leads Greenspan:

And that gets us to the madness at the other end of the Acela Corridor. On a day in which there was no good news whatsoever -- except that defense spending will go ever higher making the impending yield shock even worse -- the stock market rose by another 1%.

There is no mystery as to why, however. Honest price discovery and the discounting of real world information was totally destroyed by the Fed's monetary central planners years ago.

The only thing the casino discounts today is the trading points on the hourly, daily and weekly stock charts, and the presumption that both the fiscal and central banking branches of the state stand ready to "stimulate" whenever a serious breach occurs on the charts.

Nothing could be more mistaken -- and for reasons we will amplify upon in Part 2.

But the spoiler alert is this: The private sector is now swamped under record and unsustainable debt in both the household and business sectors. By succumbing to the most incendiary Deep State meme of all -- the Iranian Nuke lie -- the Donald has now made a public debt catastrophe an absolute certainty.

Pat Pappano , May 13, 2018 at 9:42 am GMT
It looks like a smackdown following the announcement of the superweapons. My thought on Putin's gloating show was why not keep these weaponse developments secret. Once the toothpaste is out of the tube you can't push it back in. One explanation may be that Putin thought he was in charge up to that point, but may have found out differently. I don't know if Russia has a Rothschild central bank. But agreed, it certainly looks bad. Plus Israel has hit Syria again. It all looks very bad.
Rabbitnexus , May 13, 2018 at 10:21 am GMT
@Momus

Don't be ridiculous,. Most of us would trust Iran with nukes even if they wanted them, which they do not, before the Zionist terrorist state. As the Saker said. "How anybody can respect, never mind admire, the Israelis is simply beyond comprehension. I sure can't think of a more contemptible, nasty, psychopathic gang of megalomaniacal thugs (and cowards) than the Israelis. "

ussia's objectives in Syria are not identical to their own? Are they not students of history?

I can only imagine the negotiations that went on in Russia among Netanyahu and company and the Russian government. I'm certain that Russia made assurances that it would not provide S-300 systems. What did Netanyahu have to pay for that? Perhaps assurances that he would stop pushing the Americans to bomb Syrian positions? I don't know. You have an imagination. Think of what Putin wants that Netanyahu could provide.

animalogic , May 13, 2018 at 11:42 am GMT
@Wally

I congratulate Mr Roberts for his courage.
"We must take it on faith alone."
I also agree with all his references to Israel. I loathe people who demand acts of faith (or self induced stupidity)

Iris , May 13, 2018 at 11:45 am GMT
@Pat Pappano

Yours is a very relevant point.

Russia has a national, sovereign, bank , led by a very competent economist, Elvira Nabiulina.

However, Russia's economy is not a match to its military status. Russia's entire GDP is lower than South Korea's, and is only slightly over twice the Pentagon's budget.

I think this is one of the reasons why President Putin must tread carefully: Russia's economy and internal stability are very vulnerable to external economic and financial pressure.

[May 13, 2018] Fighting unending wars across thousands of miles of the planet for almost 17 years without end, while making the president into a global assassin, is the necessary course of action under neoliberalism as the goal is to preserve and expande global, led by the USA neoliberal empire using power of bayonets

This is actually Neo-Trotskyism in action: permanent neoliberal revolution with neoliberalism brought to some countries on the tips of US bayonets.
Notable quotes:
"... 'who are the terrorists, those who, at 17 km height push buttons in B-52′s, or those who give their lives on the ground ?' ..."
May 13, 2018 | www.unz.com

redmudhooch , May 9, 2018 at 1:57 pm GMT
All of these events are CIA/Mossad/MI6. All of them. From 9/11 to mass shootings, al-Qaeda, ISIS, Boko Haram, white supremecists and even Antifa, all funded, trained by the state, with our tax dollars.

Conspiracy FACT. Prove me wrong.

Precious , May 9, 2018 at 10:57 pm GMT
Fighting wars: The United States has been fighting wars nonstop since its military invaded Afghanistan in October 2001. That's almost 17 years of invasions, occupations, air campaigns, drone strikes, special operations raids, naval air and missile attacks, and so much else, from the Philippines to Pakistan, Afghanistan to Syria, Libya to Niger isn't fighting unending wars across thousands of miles of the planet for almost 17 years without end, while making the president into a global assassin, just a tad extreme?

Of course it is. But despite the title of the article, I can't help but notice that most of it concentrates on the 16 of those 17 years that happen to have occurred before the Trump "caliphate". But why should Tom Englehardt be expected to get such trivial details correct? After all, Tom turned out to be wrong when he ominously warned us about the dangers of Trump getting us into another Korean war.

Tom's own words from July 9th, 2017 haven't aged well

If hostilities broke out and spiraled out of control, as they might, countless people could die, nuclear weapons could indeed be used for the first time since 1945, and parts of Asia could be ravaged (including possibly areas of Japan). What a second Korean War might mean, in other words, is almost beyond imagining.

Saxon , May 10, 2018 at 1:14 am GMT

the officials he appointed went to work to transform the very refugees we had such a hand in creating into terrifying bogeymen, potentially the most dangerous and extreme people on the planet, and then turned to the task of ensuring that none of them would ever arrive in this country. Doesn't that seem like an extreme set of acts and responses?

No, Tom. It seems like normal behavior from people who aren't ethnomasochists. I'm not some kind of -phobic with an irrational fear if I want my descendants to not live in a wartorn country they may eventually end up suffering a total genocide at the hands of these "widows and orphans" (read: military-aged males who think European lands are up for grabs and will be theirs in the future).

You see, the normal person who voted for Trump wanted what his surface-level politics during the campaign trail were about. Not the stuff he's actually been doing which no one voted for (yes, democracy is a bad system with no accountability,) but the stuff he talked about. The end to this neoliberal insanity which you support most of. If you really cared so much about the environment, you wouldn't be for mass migration. If you really cared about minimizing conflict, you wouldn't be for mass migration since migration is the same as war in its effects and eventual outcome.

It is not some arbitrary preference that I want a territory maintained for my kind and not invaded by unending migration of alien peoples whom we are poked, prodded, pressured, coerced and forced to miscegenate ourselves out of existence with by social engineers bent on a European genocide, which they are beginning to get louder and louder with their intent on with each passing year and the constant gloating that they think "in the future, there won't BE any white people! and that's a good thing!"

The reason we care more about these terrorist attacks on our soil is that we expect them to do as they do in their own countries, but the glaring fact is the people doing this in our countries aren't us, and never will be us. They are interlopers we didn't invite in; they were invited in from the top down with no consent.

Speaking of which, people own weapons in the US because they can and because they don't trust their government. Given what that government has done for the last 50+ years, why should they? People in other countries would do the same were they not such totalitarian nightmare states crushing down on their native population, like in Britain. Speaking of bogeymen by the way, you want to pin this all on Trump when the material conditions for much of what you wring your hands about existed well before he even announced his run. Criticize the fact that he isn't doing what he was elected to do. Don't try to concoct some lame duck grand narrative that he caused all of these problems, because he didn't.

The reason America is becoming "extreme" is because it's no longer a real, solvent country. No longer a nation–a coherent people with real, concrete commonalities. It is many people vying for power and handouts and patronage, many of whom share nothing in common at all. I share no peoplehood with Africans, Arabs, Mestizos and a host of others who've been flooded in over the last several decades and have transformed the country into something it manifestly as per the census data was not just decades back.

Biff , May 12, 2018 at 4:42 am GMT
@Saxon

I share no peoplehood with Africans, Arabs, Mestizos and a host of others who've been flooded in over the last several decades and have transformed the country into something it manifestly as per the census data was not just decades back.

I'm willing to bet you share a lot more personhood with those people you listed than the people who "own" your country. BTW, the people who "own" your country most likely hate your guts, and consider you expendable if you ever get in their way.

jilles dykstra , May 12, 2018 at 5:48 am GMT
" This subject came to my mind recently thanks to a story I noticed about another extreme wedding slaughter "

Better late than never. How long it is ago that a Malaysian president spoke to mainly western diplomats, and asked the question 'who are the terrorists, those who, at 17 km height push buttons in B-52′s, or those who give their lives on the ground ?', I do not remember. The diplomats left during the speech.

UN expert on human rights De Zaya's wanted, suppose he does not live any more, Great Britain and the USA persecuted for bombing German cities in WWII, just killing women, children and old men. Dresden is the best known example, alas it is not known that even small towns as Anklam were bombed. And then, when began all this ?

Churchill saw the genocide in what is N Afghanistan as a necessary act. And of course the Muslim religion was to blame.

The last book also describes this genocide, but one of the most bloody massacres described is against the Sikh army.

jilles dykstra , May 12, 2018 at 5:51 am GMT
@Saxon

" Fighting wars: The United States has been fighting wars nonstop since its military invaded Afghanistan in October 2001. "

Should be
Fighting wars: The United States has been fighting wars nonstop since Roosevelt began escorting convoys in the Atlantic in mid 1940.

Robert Dunn , Website May 12, 2018 at 7:09 am GMT
I'd like to thank Unz for this brief comic relief on their site. Sometimes the affairs in the world seem too much and a good laugh every now and then is necessary. For example Bashir Al-Assad killing his own people on a regular basis was hysterical!! Imagine him getting Sarin gas from ISIS depots paid for by Israel and the United States just so he could get the same United States to bomb him! That's like saying Obama was a weak president for NOT attacking Syria when he was merely informed as to who was REALLY not killing Syrian civilians because, as Putin proved, Assad didn't have those weapons. What was really funny was that America does not have extremists in charge so when we kill civilians it must be an accident!
Tom Welsh , May 12, 2018 at 7:33 am GMT
"Its national security budget is larger than those of the next eight countries combined "

My favourite statistic is to compare the increase in the formal US "defence" budget ($80 billion) for this year with the total Russian defence budget ($46 billion).

Dante , May 12, 2018 at 7:34 am GMT
@Saxon

I couldn't agree more, Your comment sums up how a lot of people are feeling. No wonder Nationalist or Nationalist inspired parties and leaders are emerging all over the European world, We are waking up and beginning to take our own side

Tom Welsh , May 12, 2018 at 7:34 am GMT
@Authenticjazzman

"First of all the question of who would hold a wedding event in the middle of the desert is completely legitimate".

Only to those who do not know that many people live in deserts.

Tom Welsh , May 12, 2018 at 7:37 am GMT
@Precious

I just cannot believe that you Americans descend to squabbling about who is more virtuous – Nero or Caligula.

Mr Putin showed that he understands the system perfectly. First he said that he sees no point in talking to European leaders, since they all take their orders from Washington. Then he further explained that presidents come and presidents go, but the policies remain exactly the same.

It's a shame that so few Americans understand their own political system as well as Mr Putin does.

Tom Welsh , May 12, 2018 at 7:56 am GMT
"However, one thing is, almost by definition, obvious. We are not a nation of extreme acts or extreme killers. Quite the opposite".

The USA is admirably positioned for security: it controls most of a large isolated continent, with only Canada and Mexico as immediate neighbours and vast oceans to the sides. As Jules Jusserand, French Ambassador to the US, remarked in 1910:

"The United States was blessed among nations. On the north, she had a weak neighbour; on the south, another weak neighbour; on the east, fish; and on the west, fish".

Long before that, Abraham Lincoln said more or less the same thing:

"At what point shall we expect the approach of danger? By what means shall we fortify against it? Shall we expect some transatlantic military giant, to step the Ocean, and crush us at a blow? Never! All the armies of Europe, Asia and Africa combined, with all the treasure of the earth (our own excepted) in their military chest; with a Buonaparte for a commander, could not by force, take a drink from the Ohio, or make a track on the Blue Ridge, in a trial of a thousand years. At what point, then, is the approach of danger to be expected? I answer, if it ever reach us it must spring up amongst us. It cannot come from abroad. If destruction be our lot, we must ourselves be its author and finisher. As a nation of freemen, we must live through all time, or die by suicide".

- Abraham Lincoln; The Collected Works of Abraham Lincoln edited by Roy P. Basler, Volume I, "Address Before the Young Men's Lyceum,of Springfield, Illinois (January 27, 1838), p. 109.

So it is surprising to find out that the USA has been at war for 93% of its existence. That means Americans have experienced peace during only 21 years out of 239.

https://www.infowars.com/america-has-been-at-war-93-of-the-time-222-out-of-239-years-since-1776/

That's rather odd, isn't it, for a country with impregnable natural borders whom no one has even tried to attack?

"Yes, we make mistakes. Yes, we sometimes kill. Yes, we sometimes even kill the innocent, however mistakenly".

A very rough estimate suggests that, since 1950, the US government through its armed forces has killed at the very least 10 million Asians alone. Three million in Korea, the same in Vietnam and its neighbours, and the same in Iraq. That's without even considering the dozens of other nations the USA has attacked (and with which, legally, it is still at war since no peace treaties were ever concluded).

Some "mistakes"!

Realist , May 12, 2018 at 8:01 am GMT
@redmudhooch

Conspiracy FACT. Prove me wrong.

That's not how it works .you have to prove yourself correct.

quasi_verbatim , May 12, 2018 at 8:37 am GMT
US garrisons in Europe are preparing for roll out You never know where these pesky rebels will pop up next.
IanHyde , May 12, 2018 at 8:56 am GMT
I recently discovered UNZ.COM and was delighted to have found a site with good intelligently written articles, then I read this utter crap and now I'm wondering
Greg Bacon , Website May 12, 2018 at 9:43 am GMT
I stopped reading when I saw this worn-out lies

We here in the United States are, of course, eternally shocked by their extremism, their willingness to kill the innocent without compunction, particularly in the case of Islamist groups, from the 9/11 attacks to ISIS's more recent slaughters.

Tom appears to be another lackey for Zionism, ready to keep telling lies about those evil Moozies that supposedly attacked the USA on 9/11, when anyone who still has brain cells left knows that 9/11 was an Israeli masterminded False Flag with help from traitors in the WH, the Pentagon, CIA, FBI and NSA. With generous assistance from the Lying MSM.

https://wikispooks.com/wiki/9-11/Israel_did_it

Take your CIA pres releases elsewhere Mr. Tom, we no longer wish to hear your lies in support of endless wars for the glory of Apartheid Israel realizing its YINON plan to stretch Israel from the brook of Egypt to the Euphrates and from Turkey to Arabia.

Oded Yinon's "A Strategy for Israel in the Nineteen Eighties"

http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/pdf/The%20Zionist%20Plan%20for%20the%20Middle%20East.pdf

Alfred , May 12, 2018 at 10:12 am GMT
@redmudhooch

Absolutely correct.

The nonsense that Assad's army deliberately poisons its own people with chemical weapons is a well-known false-flag. How could he control his Syrian army if that went on? It is absolutely ridiculous.

As for 9/11, it was an inside job – with many Israeli "students" laying the explosives in the THREE buildings at night over a period of months. The fact that no one lived in them and that a Bush company was responsible for security is all you need to know. Naturally, there were no Israeli victims – a statistical impossibility if they were not forewarned.

https://wikispooks.com/wiki/9-11/Israel_did_it

jacques sheete , May 12, 2018 at 10:31 am GMT

The Caliphate of Trump

Bravo! The author is the winner of the Sheete Prize for Inane and Asinine Titles. This has to be the dumbest title for anything I've ever seen.

Even calling it the Rabbinate of Trump would be somewhat more accurate.

What kind of ass is the author to insult caliphs by associating Trump with their positions?

jacques sheete , May 12, 2018 at 10:35 am GMT

However, one thing is, almost by definition, obvious. We are not a nation of extreme acts or extreme killers.

This has to be satire. I'll never know though because it made me too nauseated to continue.

Another scribbler to ignore.

PS: You are horrible at writing satire, if that's what it's supposed to be. If not, then you are unhinged to a shocking degree.

Jake , May 12, 2018 at 11:33 am GMT
The most thoroughly amoral, vicious ruling group in the region is the House of Saud. And the US and the Israelis are both deep into bed with the Saudis.
Authenticjazzman , May 12, 2018 at 12:58 pm GMT
@Tom Welsh

"Only to those who do not know that many people live in deserts"

People do not "live in deserts" rather they live in settlements which are located in the desert.

They do not just go out into the blazing sand and throw down blankets and buckets, and then start "Living in the desert".

And they do not hold bonafide "wedding parties" out in the desert, under the relentless burning sun, rather they hold their wedding parties in settlements which are located in thte desert with a modicum of human comforts.

Look friend myself being world traveler, I have been to north africa on more than one occasion, and I know wtf I am talking about.

AJM "Mensa" qualified since 1973, airborne trained US army vet, and pro jazz artisit.

[May 13, 2018] The Skripals will most likely never be allowed to talk by The Saker

Where are the Scripals? How are they feeling these days? (68 days and counting), Are they alive ?
Notable quotes:
"... To clarify: Sergei Skripal has been suspected of playing a role in concocting the fake "Steele dossier" that helped launch the Russiagate NARRATIVE. ..."
"... The "dossier" was also used by Comey's FBI to obtain FISA warrants to monitor Trump campaign communications. (The NSA had intercepts all along but Comey's FBI needed a "provenance.") ..."
"... Like the Hound of the Baskervilles, the absence of questions in the British media speaks volumes. "The truth is the first casualty in a war." ..."
May 13, 2018 | www.unz.com

... ... ...

In the meantime, I want to refocus on the Skripal case. There is one outright bizarre thing which I initially dismissed, but which really is becoming disturbing: the fact that the Brits are apparently holding Sergei and Iulia Skripal incommunicado. In other words, they have been kidnapped.

There was this one single telephone call between Iulia Skripal and her sister, Victoria, in which Iulia said that she was okay (she was clearly trying to reassure Victoria) but it was clear that she could not speak freely. Furthermore, when Victoria mentioned that she would want to visit Iulia, the latter reply 'nobody will give you a visa'. After that – full silence. The Russian consulate has been making countless requests to have a visit, but all that the Brits have done since is have Scotland Yard post a letter which was evidently not written by Iulia and which said " I have access to friends and family, and I have been made aware of my specific contacts at the Russian Embassy who have kindly offered me their assistance in any way they can. At the moment I do not wish to avail myself of their services, but, if I change my mind I know how to contact them ". What friends?! What family?! Nonsense!

Her sister tried to contact her many times through various channels, including official ones, and then in total despair, she posted the following message on Facebook:

" My darling sister, Yulia! You are not communicating with us, and we don't know anything about you and Sergey Victorivich. I know that I have no right to interfere in your affairs without asking your permission, but I worry too much. I worry about you and your dad. I also worry about Nuar. [Nuar is Yulia Skrial's dog, whom she left to stay at a kennel center, while she was traveling to the UK.] He is now at the dog hotel, and they want to get paid. We have to decide something what to do with him. I am ready to take him and to take care of him until you come back home. Besides Nuar, I am concerned about your apartment and your car. Nothing has been decided about their safety and maintenance. We can help with all that, but I need your power of attorney in my or my sister Lena's name. If you think that all of these is important, draw up a power of attorney form in a Russian consulate in any country. If you won't do that, we will understand and won't interfere in your affairs.

Vika "

No reply ever came.

I just entered the following query into Google: " Skripal ". April 10 th has an entry saying that she was released from the hospital. That is the most recent one I have found. I looked on Wikipedia , the same thing, there is nothing at all.

I have to admit that when I first heard the Russian complaints I figured that this was no big deal. I thought " the Brits told the Skripals that Putin tried to poison them, they are probably afraid, and possibly still sick from whatever it is which made them sick, but the Brits would never outright kidnap two foreign citizens, and most definitely not in such a public way ".

I am not so sure anymore.

First, let's get the obvious one out of the way: the fear for the security of the Skripals. That is utter nonsense. The Brits can organize a meeting between а Russian diplomat in the UK at a highly protected UK facility, with tanks, SAS Teams on the standby, helicopters in the air, bombers, etc. That Russian diplomat could speak to them through bullet-proof glass and a phone. And, since the Russians are all so dangerous, he can be searched for weapons. All which the Skripals need to do is to tell him/her "thank you, your services are not needed". Conversation over. But the Brits refuse even that.

But let's say that the Skripals are so totally terrified of the evil Russians, that they categorically refuse. Even by video-conference. It would be traumatic for them, right? Okay.

What about a press conference then?

Even more disturbing is that, at least to my knowledge, nobody in the western corporate media is asking for an interview with them. Snowden can safely speak from Russia and address even large conferences, but the Skripals can't speak to anybody at all?

But here is the worst part of this: it has been two months already since the Skripals are held in total secrecy by the UK authorities. Two months, that is 60 days. Ask any specialist on interrogation or any psychologist what kind of effect 60 days of "specialized treatment" can do to a person.

I am not dismissing the Russian statements about "kidnapping" anymore. What I see is this: on substance, the Skripal false flag has crashed and burned, just like MH17 or the Douma chemical attack, but unlike MH17 or Douma, the Skripals are two witnesses whose testimony has the potential to result in a gigantic scandal, not just for the May government, but for all those spineless Europeans who showed "solidarity" with Britain. In other words, the Skripals will probably never be allowed to speak freely: they must either be killed or totally brainwashed or disappeared. Any other option would result in a scandal of planetary magnitude.

I can't pretend like my heart goes out to Sergei Skripal: the man was an officer who gave an oath and who then betrayed his country to the British (he was a British agent, not a Russian one as the press writes). Those holding him today are his former bosses. But Iulia? She is completely innocent and as of April 5 th (when she called her sister Victoria), she was clearly in good health and with a clear mind. Now she has been disappeared and I don't know which is worse, the fact that she might never reappear or that she might one day reappear following months of British "counseling". As for her father, he paid for his betrayal and he too deserves a better fate than being poisoned, used and then disappeared.

In the big scheme of things (the Zionists war against our entire planet), two individuals like Sergei and Iulia Skripal might not matter. But I think that the least we can do is to remember them and their plight.

This also begs the question of what kind of society we live in. I am not shocked by the fact that the British state would resort to such methods (they have always used them). I am shocked that in a so-called western "democracy" with freedom, pluralism and "European values" (whatever that means) the Brits could get away with this.

How about some "solidarity" with the Skripals – you, Europeans?!


Bigly , May 11, 2018 at 4:29 am GMT

Victoria is not Yulia's sister.

Other than that, I share your sentiments regarding Putin.

Eagle Eye , May 11, 2018 at 8:18 am GMT
As noted on this site some three weeks ago, former British ambassador Craig Murray suggested some time ago that Sergei and Yulia Skripal were most likely murdered by Western secret services in order to keep the "Russiagate" fiction (somewhat) alive.

Sergei cannot win – even if he was NOT involved in Russiagate, murdering him creates flexibility to hang the story on him without contradiction. Yulia is icing on the cake – "Surely Her Majesty's Government wouldn't murder a pretty girl like Yulia!"

Rather bizarrely, it appears appears that all premises connected with the Skripals are to be demolished, purely to protect the public, you understand.

Eagle Eye , May 11, 2018 at 1:50 pm GMT
@Eagle Eye

To clarify: Sergei Skripal has been suspected of playing a role in concocting the fake "Steele dossier" that helped launch the Russiagate NARRATIVE.

The "dossier" was also used by Comey's FBI to obtain FISA warrants to monitor Trump campaign communications. (The NSA had intercepts all along but Comey's FBI needed a "provenance.")

Whether Skripal was actually involved in inventing the dossier or not, his absence will be used to milk the narrative afloat a little longer.

Like the Hound of the Baskervilles, the absence of questions in the British media speaks volumes. "The truth is the first casualty in a war."

aleksandar , May 11, 2018 at 5:11 pm GMT
Not a good idea to mix Putin/Satanahyu and the Skripals case. The Skripal deserve one article. Even if they are probably dead.
"Western values "
Antiwar7 , May 11, 2018 at 9:41 pm GMT
@Bigly

You're right. but to explain the error in English: She's her first cousin, and in Russian, cousins are referred to as brother and sister.

El Dato , May 11, 2018 at 9:42 pm GMT
This is going Reservoir Dogs faster than expected.

My popcorn is ready!

Apparently Americans are the usual thre-colored dumbfucks and have no clue what's going on.Grunt noises is all they still understand.

Democrats' lead melting ahead of midterms as Trump turns hawkish

John Brunner was a genius.

JR , May 12, 2018 at 11:28 am GMT
Russia should request a third party for instance a well known British public figure as an intermediary to contact Skripals on behalf of Russia. The UK wil not be able to claim that such figure will put undue pressure on the Skripals and would be forced to either facilitate contact or be exposed as actually kidnapping the Skripals.

Potential intermediaries Corbyn, Galloway, UN representative, Tulsi Gabbard. There are numerous candidates.

Sean , May 12, 2018 at 5:58 pm GMT

In other words, the Skripals will probably never be allowed to speak freely: they must either be killed or totally brainwashed or disappeared. Any other option would result in a scandal of planetary magnitude.

That certainly explains why Britain did not kill them with Novichok.

Cyrano , May 12, 2018 at 6:59 pm GMT
The British are working hard on new super-secret identities for the Scripals. They are so secret that even the Scripals would not be allowed to know them. Technically, the British could tell the Scripals their new identities, but then they would have to kill them, in order to keep them secret.
Eagle Eye , May 13, 2018 at 7:42 am GMT
@Svigor

Not sure what exactly you mean by "pending."

Do you really believe the Skripal's are still alive? Can we expect to see them in public?

The traditional rule is that a person may be declared dead after one year if he hasn't been heard of from people he would normally communicate with.

Saffer , May 13, 2018 at 10:57 am GMT
It is clear that every person including The Saker who write about the Skripals and Russian affairs do not have the in-depth knowledge of John Helmer the longest serving independent western journalist in Moscow. In this post by John Helmer dated 23/03/2018

http://johnhelmer.net/the-skripal-case-goes-to-court-for-the-first-time-new-uncertainties-for-the-british-and-russian-governments/#more-18920

he writes about the British Court of Protection's findings.

Below are two excerpts (in parenthesis his comments) but I implore you to read the whole article as well as other postings on the potential appointments in Putins new government.

"British High Court Justice David Williams has issued the first court adjudication of evidence presented by the British Government of what happened to Sergei Skripal and Yulia Skripal when they succumbed to poisoning in Salisbury on March 4. Following three days of closed-door hearings this week in London, the judge issued a ruling for publication yesterday."

"Representing the Skripals, Vikram Sachdeva QC told the judge "that in this case at present it did not appear practicable or appropriate to seek the views of others who might be interested in the welfare of Mr Skripal (his mother perhaps) or Ms Skripal (perhaps a fiancé).

Iris , May 13, 2018 at 11:26 am GMT
" the Skripals are two witnesses whose testimony has the potential to result in a gigantic scandal, not just for the May government, but for all those spineless Europeans who showed "solidarity" with Britain . "

Based on recent history, one can safely bet that there will be no scandal.

The bombing of the Lockerbie plane was an evil crime that took 270 innocent lives, and was attributed by the official UK/US intelligence centres to the former Libyan government under late President Gaddafi.

When this government came under NATO attack in 2011, its foreign minister Moussa Koussa defected and sought refuge in London. He had previously been head of Libyan secret services for 15 years (!!!), and as such, would have organised and supervised the Lockerbie "terror" attack.

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2011/mar/31/moussa-koussa-foreign-minister-trial

What did the UK/US governments do with him? Send him to trial at the Hague? Of course not. He was sent to a safe heaven somewhere in the NATO proxy EAU.

Nobody cares about the victims of false flag attacks, quite the contrary: the less investigations, the more efficient the false flag.

[May 12, 2018] Neoliberal management and Zombies by Robert Bonomo

May 12, 2018 | www.unz.com

The most heinous thing a human can do is eat another human. Fear of cannibalism along with the other two great taboos, incest and inter-family violence, are the bedrocks of human culture. Without these taboos there is no human civilization, yet zombie cannibals are everywhere, from the most popular TV shows in the US and Europe to the most played PC games. Everywhere we look there is a zombie dragging his feet looking for human prey. The ubiquitous nature of this meme of semi-human creatures that survive only by breaking the most fundamental of human taboos is a clear indicator of a collective cultural pathology.

Humans must not only kill and eat plants and animals to survive, we must make sure they keep coming back so they can be killed and eaten again and again. Life needs death; we must kill to live, and eventually we all wind up as someone else's food. This paradox lies at the core of the world's religions and mythologies and the fear/repulsion of eating other humans is the keystone of our culture, without it we turn on ourselves and self-annihilation ensues. The zombie meme is a modern myth pointing to a deep fear of self-destruction.

The great psychologist and mystic Carl Jung was asked if a myth could be equated to a collective dream and he answered this way, "A myth is the product of an unconscious process in a particular social group, at a particular time, at a particular place. This unconscious process can naturally be equated with a dream. Hence anyone who 'mythologizes,' that is, tells myths, is speaking out of this dream."

If a person had a recurring nightmare that she was eating her family it would be a clear symptom of a profound psychological disturbance. Cultures don't dream, but they do tell stories and those stories can tell us much about the state of the collective psyche.

Many of the themes in our popular culture are conscious story telling devices with the definite purpose of social engineering/control, but others seem to just emerge from the collective unconscious like the stuff of dreams. The zombie meme is clearly of the latter variety. It's pointing to a fear that something has broken in our culture and what awaits us is a collective psychotic break of apocalyptic proportions.

[May 12, 2018] Generally voters should pass exam to be eligible to vote, like in many other occupations

May 12, 2018 | www.unz.com

jacques sheete , May 10, 2018 at 7:57 pm GMT

@Stan d Mute

Exposure to the general public helps in understanding this I think. Go to a mall, watch Mark Dice videos online. People are astonishingly stupid. Staggeringly stupid.

I'm so stupid I never even heard of Mark Dice and despite the idea that I have an extremely high CI (Curiosity Index) I am not even tempted to have such a desire. Anyway, I'm constantly amazed at how stupid we humans can be, yet remarkably, we stumble along. It baffles the bl ** p outta me.

And that would just be "too terrible to contemplate" wouldn't it?

Oh, yes, it would!!!

[May 11, 2018] Protecting Israel Is Their Full-Time Job by Philip Giraldi

It is unclear to what extent Israel is given unfairly favorable treatment and to what extent it is the most useful allies (along with KSA) of f the USA in the middle East securing energy supplies to the according to Carter doctrine,
Notable quotes:
"... The latest outrage against the First Amendment comes from South Carolina, the home state of the arch-Zionist poseur and United Nations Ambassador extraordinary Nikki Haley. A new hate speech law was inserted in the state's recently approved annual budget. ..."
"... The legislation borrows from the U.S. State Department definition of anti-Semitism, which proscribes speech that "demonizes" or applies "double standards" to Israel "by requiring of it a behavior not expected or demanded of any other democratic nation" as anti-Semitic. ..."
"... While the State Department definition is a guideline, the South Carolina's specific inclusion of it in legislation makes explicit that criticism of Israel as hate speech can be subject to criminal penalties. It also is binding on all the states universities and educational institutions. ..."
"... The law was promoted by Alan Clemmons, a Mormon legislator who has led numerous delegations to Israel and who has been described as "Israel's biggest supporter in a U.S. state legislature." ..."
"... Normally foreign governments have what is referred to as sovereign immunity which prevents their being sued, but that all changed in the U.S. with the passage of the Justice Against Sponsors of Terrorism Act (JASTA) of 2016, which permitted individual lawsuits in any federal court involving any government's alleged participation in international acts of "terrorism." This has resulted in a series of multi-billion-dollar lawsuits against Iran, the Palestinians and also Saudi Arabia. Many of the lawsuits have Israeli citizens as plaintiffs, suing in American courts. ..."
"... Indeed, it is far more plausible that Israel was involved in 9/11 than was Iran. Israel operated a massive spying operation directed against Arabs in the U.S. and several of its intelligence officers were seen in Jersey City to be filming themselves while dancing and cavorting in delight as the twin towers went down, suggesting some prior knowledge. ..."
"... But, of course, no one would be allowed to sue Israel in an American court. The 9/11 Commission failed to examine the case against Israel even though it allegedly sought to compile a "full and complete account of the circumstances surrounding" the attacks, but it did investigate the possible ties to Iran. It found the only evidence of any Iranian support to consist of certain 9/11 hijackers travelling through Iran on their way to Afghanistan without having their passports stamped. ..."
"... Israel is a fiscal off-shore through passage for decanting public funds to private hands, a physical vault to hold assets, reinsert assets into the global financial system. ..."
"... As imprecise as can be, but to popularize the situation: the before Castro, Cuba Mafia save haven. ..."
"... This is partly the explanation of "military capitalism" deployed rather recently in insider circles to capture an existing situation where the US is left to prop up it's financial make believe using military show of. That is partly why "war" is so publicly discussed, actions are leaked, this contrary to what real war requires, deep stealth. ..."
"... American "foreign aid" is prohibited from being given to any country that has not signed the "Nuclear Non-proliferation Treaty" or refuses to abide by "International Atomic Energy Agency" (IAEA) guidelines regarding its nuclear devices. Guess what?? Israel does not abide by EITHER and still gets the majority of American "foreign aid". ..."
"... There are forty or so congressmen, senators and thousands of high-level policy "wonks" infecting the U S government who hold "dual citizenship" with Israel. Such dual citizenship only reinforces "split loyalty"–NOT upholding the interests of the United States, and must be strictly prohibited. ..."
"... Those holding dual citizenship must be required to renounce said foreign citizenship. Refusal to do so should result in immediate deportation with loss of American citizenship. Present and former holders of dual citizenship should not be allowed to serve in any American governmental capacity. ..."
May 08, 2018 | www.unz.com

Time to question the loyalty of some legislators and judges

I have a number of times discussed how the U.S. and other governments have legislated and otherwise promoted Jewish and Israeli interests in ways that most people would find unacceptable if they were aware of what exactly has been going on. Here in the United States, special Medicare coverage and immigration status have been granted, often concealed in other legislation, to benefit holocaust survivors and Russian Jews seeking to emigrate. State legislatures and the U.S. Congress have meanwhile been working hard to pass legislation that blocks and even criminalizes the non-violent Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) protests against Israeli behavior while universities have been banning anti-Israel demonstrators and groups on campus because they apparently are offensive to the sensitivities of some Jewish students.

The latest outrage against the First Amendment comes from South Carolina, the home state of the arch-Zionist poseur and United Nations Ambassador extraordinary Nikki Haley. A new hate speech law was inserted in the state's recently approved annual budget.

The legislation borrows from the U.S. State Department definition of anti-Semitism, which proscribes speech that "demonizes" or applies "double standards" to Israel "by requiring of it a behavior not expected or demanded of any other democratic nation" as anti-Semitic.

While the State Department definition is a guideline, the South Carolina's specific inclusion of it in legislation makes explicit that criticism of Israel as hate speech can be subject to criminal penalties. It also is binding on all the states universities and educational institutions.

The law was promoted by Alan Clemmons, a Mormon legislator who has led numerous delegations to Israel and who has been described as "Israel's biggest supporter in a U.S. state legislature."

Supporters of the Bill of Rights have been universally opposed to the bill, but pro-Israel groups have praised the initiative and are expecting a "new wave" of legislation all across the United States blocking any criticism of the self-described Jewish State. The Brandeis Center has enthused

"This bill gives South Carolina the tools to protect Jewish students' and all South Carolina students' right to a learning environment free of unlawful discrimination. We are hoping this momentous step will result in another national wave to, once and for all, begin defeating rising anti-Semitism."

Other states will undoubtedly follow the South Carolina lead, so it would appear that any criticism of Israel will become illegal in the public square if the many friends of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu have their way. And they generally do get what they want from the federal level all the way down to the states and local communities, so be prepared.

Israel also is regularly exploiting the American legal system to punish countries that it has defined as its enemies. Its government sponsored lawfare organization called Shurat Hadin has initiated a number of lawsuits in U.S. courts to punish Palestinians and Iranians. Ironically, it is currently seeking to demonstrate that Hamas is committing war crimes in Gaza , where Israel has been using army snipers to kill unarmed demonstrators.

Other lawsuits filed on behalf of mostly Jewish Americans in U.S. courts seeking compensation from Iranians and Palestinians are also pending, with the tribunals in Manhattan particularly prone to being sympathetic to the plaintiffs. Last week, at the Federal Court for the Southern District of Manhattan, Judge George Daniels issued a default judgment relating to his 2011 determination that Iran and Hezbollah materially and directly supported al-Qaeda in the 9/11 attacks and are legally responsible for damages to the hundreds of family members of victims who are named in the case. The judge ordered Iran to pay $6 billion in compensation – "$12,500,000 per spouse, $8,500,000 per parent, $8,500,000 per child, and $4,250,000 per sibling" to the families and estates of the deceased. A 4.96 annual interest rate will also be applied to the amount, starting from September 11, 2001 to the date of the judgement."

Normally foreign governments have what is referred to as sovereign immunity which prevents their being sued, but that all changed in the U.S. with the passage of the Justice Against Sponsors of Terrorism Act (JASTA) of 2016, which permitted individual lawsuits in any federal court involving any government's alleged participation in international acts of "terrorism." This has resulted in a series of multi-billion-dollar lawsuits against Iran, the Palestinians and also Saudi Arabia. Many of the lawsuits have Israeli citizens as plaintiffs, suing in American courts.

Though the lawsuit claimed, and Judge Daniels agreed, that Tehran had supported the 9/11 hijackers with training and other assistance, most authorities would question that judgement. Many would consider it to be ludicrous as Iranian Shi'ites were considered to be kill-on-sight heretics by al-Qaeda. The idea that Iran was somehow involved in 9/11 is in reality a ridiculous Israel Lobby contrivance that was first floated in 2015 by ex-CIA Director James Woolsey, a renowned Zionist stooge and conspiracy theorist who is viewed by many as not completely in possession of all his marbles.

Indeed, it is far more plausible that Israel was involved in 9/11 than was Iran. Israel operated a massive spying operation directed against Arabs in the U.S. and several of its intelligence officers were seen in Jersey City to be filming themselves while dancing and cavorting in delight as the twin towers went down, suggesting some prior knowledge.

But, of course, no one would be allowed to sue Israel in an American court. The 9/11 Commission failed to examine the case against Israel even though it allegedly sought to compile a "full and complete account of the circumstances surrounding" the attacks, but it did investigate the possible ties to Iran. It found the only evidence of any Iranian support to consist of certain 9/11 hijackers travelling through Iran on their way to Afghanistan without having their passports stamped.

In his Farewell Address President George Washington warned that

" a passionate attachment of one nation for another produces a variety of evils. Sympathy for the favorite nation, facilitating the illusion of an imaginary common interest in cases where no real common interest exists, and infusing into one the enmities of the other, betrays the former into a participation in the quarrels and wars of the latter without adequate inducement or justification. It leads also to concessions to the favorite nation of privileges denied to others which is apt doubly to injure the nation making the concessions; by unnecessarily parting with what ought to have been retained, and by exciting jealousy, ill-will, and a disposition to retaliate, in the parties from whom equal privileges are withheld. And it gives to ambitious, corrupted, or deluded citizens (who devote themselves to the favorite nation), facility to betray or sacrifice the interests of their own country, without odium, sometimes even with popularity; gilding, with the appearances of a virtuous sense of obligation, a commendable deference for public opinion, or a laudable zeal for public good, the base or foolish compliances of ambition, corruption, or infatuation. As avenues to foreign influence in innumerable ways, such attachments are particularly alarming to the truly enlightened and independent patriot."

If one believes that deference to the special foreign interest of one powerful and wealthy segment of the population is appropriate in a democracy then I suppose the Jewish/Israeli pander has to be considered acceptable. I happen to believe that, as our first president so clearly articulated, it is not, particularly as much of the concession that Jews are somehow to be treated differently than the rest of the community due to their alleged victimhood contributes to a criticism-free ride for an Israel which is eagerly seeking a new war in the Middle East. It would be a war that the United States would inevitably get pulled into by Israel's friends in Congress and the media. It would also be catastrophic for all parties involved and it all starts with the belief that Israel should somehow be protected and its enemies punished while also being exempt from being made accountable for its actions.


Curmudgeon , May 8, 2018 at 4:57 am GMT

It's more than time to question, it's time to prosecute. If Alan Clemmons, or any other legislator, has gone to Israel, with any assistance from Israel financial or otherwise, then Clemmons (and others) have taken a bribe. Failure to prosecute, just as failure to enforce current immigration laws, is the road to anarchy.

As for Judge Daniels, I guess I could cut him some slack, given it's a default judgment, but that goes out the door if he was the judge that certified the case going forward in the first place. There is no prima facie evidence of Iran's involvement in 9/11, and therefore, false statements made in the statement of claim are a perversion of justice. A judge is supposed to rule on facts, not conjecture.

Brabantian , Website May 8, 2018 at 5:55 am GMT

75 years ago, people hid Jews to protect them from imprisonment and possible death by European-led jailers. Now in 2018, people are hiding Europeans to protect them from imprisonment and possible death by Jewish-led jailers

89-year-old Ursula Haverbeck-Wetzel is right now being hunted by German police at the behest of Jewish groups, because she did not show up at prison a few days ago, to serve a two-year-jail sentence for questioning the official narrative of the Jewish killings in World War II It is recognised by Jews and others that at her age, the long jailing may kill her

The 'International Auschwitz Committee' says German police should use 'high pressure' to find this elderly woman and imprison her, even though it may kill her

And yet Jews who speak like this claim they do not understand why people develop antipathy to Jews It is in fact the International Auschwitz Committee which is 'inciting anti-semitism', as they inspire Germans to hide elderly people from Jews 'like Anne Frank was hidden from Germans'

However much Ursula Haverbeck might be in error in her historical opinions, this is appalling and shocking treatment of a grandmotherly woman soon to be 90 years of age sending her very possibly to death for her ideas regarding an era to which she is a living personal witness (Haverbeck was born in 1928, and will turn age 90 this 8 November)

This reminds of the case of a World War II Jewish witness, a rabbi's son, who was with the Russian advance troops who liberated places like Auschwitz, Joseph Ginzburg – Joseph G Burg, direct interrogator of Auschwitz and other camp survivors The fiercely anti-Nazi and very Jewish Burg, said the Holocaust was an exaggeration, a fraud fabricated by Zionists, he wrote books on this, & had many of those books burned by the modern West German government tho the old Bonn regime never had the stomach to jail rabbi's son Joseph Ginzburg (1908-90), despite his holocaust denial

MarkinLA , May 8, 2018 at 6:22 am GMT
OT but since it seems Israel first stooge Insane McCain is finally going to meet Satan. What I want to know is, has anybody announced how they intend to handle all the people who want to piss on his grave? Will there be a lottery, will there be those "take a number" machines, will it be first come first served or will there be some kind of contest, like writing an essay?
jilles dykstra , May 8, 2018 at 6:48 am GMT
On the day of Sept 11, when I still, of course, believed the Muslim terror attack story, I said to my wife 'just Israel benefits'. I simply could not see how these Muslim attacks benefitted Muslims. No idea, at the time, as Anatol Lieven also did not have at the end of the month, his article 'New Cold War' in the then still independent Guardian, that these attacks would be used to justify wars on Afghanistan and Iraq.

It was 2004 when Hollings made his famous speech, promising war to AIPAC for the jewish vote, 'that is politics'.

Mark James , May 8, 2018 at 7:00 am GMT
I'm convinced the neocons will not pull this off this time . After many years of war a passive public may be catching on. I expect the price of oil to jolt upwards this afternoon. When people begin asking why the answers need to be that our "ally" Israel keeps threatening war if they don't get their way and Trump doesn't tear up the P5+1 treaty.

If your member of congress is either gung-ho on treaty repeal or even worse, talking about Iran regime change like Rudi , https://www.haaretz.com/us-news/trump-committed-to-iran-regime-change-giuliani-says-1.6055510 ,, tell him or her that we can and will do better and expect to vote accordingly.

animalogic , May 8, 2018 at 8:28 am GMT
@Brabantian

A 90 year old woman must "serve a two-year-jail sentence for questioning the official narrative of the Jewish killings in World War II "

This is surreal. Liberal democracy (what's left of it) down the rabbit hole. Imprisonment as a consequence of questioning history ? Yes, I know, Germany has its sensitivities, but should historical guilt excuse a vicious assault on core values & a vulnerable individual ?

m___ , May 8, 2018 at 8:34 am GMT
No context to the article that matters. Lost in deviations. The real issue: any transaction to and from Israel makes some Jewish and elite non Jewish Americans accessory. Israel is a fiscal off-shore through passage for decanting public funds to private hands, a physical vault to hold assets, reinsert assets into the global financial system.

As imprecise as can be, but to popularize the situation: the before Castro, Cuba Mafia save haven.

One must realize that when the dollar, as is happening looses part of it's reserve status(currently under way, partly global transactions start escaping the dollar accountability, thus leaving a smaller margin of cooking the books), there need to be a trustworthy insertion point into the Yuan, any digital currency, international financial markets, currency speculation for the elites of the West, evasion of embargos for the exeptionals.

This is partly the explanation of "military capitalism" deployed rather recently in insider circles to capture an existing situation where the US is left to prop up it's financial make believe using military show of. That is partly why "war" is so publicly discussed, actions are leaked, this contrary to what real war requires, deep stealth.

Israel is a Swiss knife for corporate international billionaires, no billionaires no Israel.

zendeviant , May 8, 2018 at 10:08 am GMT
Would the JASTA act open the way for litigation against Israel's involvement in 9/11? Of course, there would have to be a change in venue because the southern district of Manhattan is kind of evil's homecourt.

Might be just the right crack in the absurdity, to investigate, prosecute and sentence the perpetrators. I mean if they can go after a ninety year old woman, why not a geriatric Jerome Hauser, Dov Zakheim, etc?

Just spit-balling here, I'll go back to my observational pessimism

Tyrion 2 , May 8, 2018 at 10:51 am GMT
@Thomm

Or, it could just be that Unz believes in Aristotle's theory that adopting intellectual virtues is the best way to get to the truth.

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Intellectual_virtue

anarchyst , May 8, 2018 at 11:01 am GMT
American "foreign aid" is prohibited from being given to any country that has not signed the "Nuclear Non-proliferation Treaty" or refuses to abide by "International Atomic Energy Agency" (IAEA) guidelines regarding its nuclear devices. Guess what?? Israel does not abide by EITHER and still gets the majority of American "foreign aid".

This prohibition also applies to countries that do not register their "agents of a foreign government" with the U S State Department. Guess what?? Israel (again) with its "American Israel Political Action Committee" (AIPAC) still gets "foreign aid" in contravention of American law..

There are forty or so congressmen, senators and thousands of high-level policy "wonks" infecting the U S government who hold "dual citizenship" with Israel. Such dual citizenship only reinforces "split loyalty"–NOT upholding the interests of the United States, and must be strictly prohibited.

Those holding dual citizenship must be required to renounce said foreign citizenship. Refusal to do so should result in immediate deportation with loss of American citizenship. Present and former holders of dual citizenship should not be allowed to serve in any American governmental capacity.

Momus , May 8, 2018 at 1:20 pm GMT
@anarchyst

The American Presidents Johnson and Nixon were satisfied with the Israeli explanation that they would not be the first to introduce nuclear weapons to the mid east. Successive administrations accept this declaration and are not interested in forcing them to join the IAEA.

Fair enough too given the history of their persecution and the massive contributions of Jewish brainpower to America's bomb project and many prior and subsequent, scientific, medical, legal and industrial efforts.

densa , May 8, 2018 at 5:36 pm GMT
@Anonymous

I hope not. There is nothing more powerful than an idea whose time has come.

Thanks to Giraldi and all the commenters here who want to see our government function on our behalf. Right now it's riddled with treason. Despite large majorities of both parties consistently identifying money as corrupting our politics, bribery became normalized in part so that Jewish politics could prosper. Now we no longer even expect our representative to pretend.

ChuckOrloski , May 8, 2018 at 5:51 pm GMT
@Bardon Kaldian

Hi Bar Don Kaldian,

Below is a "crackpot" Israeli-commemoration that's way more than mere "irresponsible blabber."

https://m.jpost.com/Israel-News/In-honor-of-Trump-Jerusalem-square-near-American-embassy-named-for-him-554752

[May 04, 2018] FBI monitored phone calls of Trump s personal lawyer by Barry Grey

FBI monitored phone calls of Trump's personal lawyer
Notable quotes:
"... US prosecutors, according to news reports, have also been covertly reading Cohen's emails. ..."
"... Spying on a lawyer's phone calls and Internet communications is considered highly unusual, given the principle of lawyer-client privilege. However, the Daily Beast ..."
"... Indeed, Trump's enemies within the ruling elite and the state apparatus know with whom they are dealing. The billionaire president is a representative of the criminal American financial oligarchy, a product of the New York real estate, casino gambling and reality TV milieu. His election expressed the degradation of American bourgeois politics and the entire political system. ..."
"... That being said, the methods being employed by Trump's factional opponents within the ruling elite are profoundly anti-democratic. The Mueller investigation itself is based on concocted and unsubstantiated allegations of Russian "meddling" in the elections and collusion by the Trump campaign in Moscow's supposed efforts to swing the election in his favor. ..."
"... This narrative, which has dominated US politics for nearly two years, has been used by the Democratic Party and most of the corporate media to attempt to whip up a war hysteria against Russia and force Trump to more rapidly escalate Washington's wars in the Middle East. It is also the pretext for the expanding campaign to censor the Internet and criminalize political dissent in the name of combating foreign-inspired "fake news." ..."
"... The context for the latest revelations is a sharpening of the conflict between the Trump White House and Mueller. Over the past several weeks, Trump has reshuffled the legal team handling his dealings with the special counsel to pursue a more aggressive legal response to the investigation. Last month, Trump named former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani to head the team, following the resignation of John Dowd in March. ..."
"... This week, the White House announced the resignation of Ty Cobb, who had counseled Trump to adopt a cooperative posture toward Mueller, advising that such a course would lead to a more rapid conclusion to the investigation. Not only has that not occurred, but Mueller has increased pressure on Trump to agree to an interview with his investigators. ..."
"... Flood has been described in the press as a "wartime consigliere." His appointment is seen as increasing the possibility of a legal fight to block an interview with Mueller that could ultimately go to the US Supreme Court. ..."
"... In a Wednesday night television interview with Fox News' Sean Hannity, Giuliani excoriated former FBI Director James Comey, whom Trump fired last May after Comey announced that the FBI was investigating possible Trump campaign collusion with Russia. Giuliani called him "a disgraceful liar" and said he should be indicted for leaking "confidential FBI information." He called the Mueller probe "a completely tainted investigation" and denounced the FBI raid on Cohen as a "storm trooper" operation. ..."
"... Washington Post ..."
May 04, 2018 | www.wsws.org

Multiple media reports on Thursday revealed that the Federal Bureau of Investigation monitored and logged the phone calls of President Donald Trump's personal lawyer and confidante, Michael Cohen, in the period leading up to the FBI raid on Cohen's office and residences in April.

According to NBC News, at least one of the calls that were tracked was between Cohen and Trump.

The extraordinary fact that the federal government's chief police agency, an integral part of the country's intelligence network, is monitoring telephone communications between the president and his self-described "fixer" points to the explosive level of conflict within the American ruling class and its state.

The revelation comes a month after the FBI, based on a referral from Robert Mueller, the special counsel who is investigating alleged Russian interference in the 2016 election and possible collusion by the Trump campaign, raided Cohen's office and residences as part of a criminal probe into his business dealings. FBI agents seized Cohen's financial records, computer hard drive, cell phones and taped recordings of conversations. Ostensibly, the main concern of federal prosecutors is Cohen's involvement in hush-money payoffs to two women, a porn star and a former Playboy playmate, who claim to have had sexual relations with Trump.

US prosecutors, according to news reports, have also been covertly reading Cohen's emails.

Spying on a lawyer's phone calls and Internet communications is considered highly unusual, given the principle of lawyer-client privilege. However, the Daily Beast quoted Ken White, a former federal prosecutor, as saying, "That sort of thing happens all the time if you're dealing with mob wiretaps."

Indeed, Trump's enemies within the ruling elite and the state apparatus know with whom they are dealing. The billionaire president is a representative of the criminal American financial oligarchy, a product of the New York real estate, casino gambling and reality TV milieu. His election expressed the degradation of American bourgeois politics and the entire political system.

There is little doubt that the FBI and Mueller have seized more than enough evidence of wrong-doing in Trump's business dealings to bring down an indictment, either to attempt a criminal prosecution -- never before carried out against a sitting president -- or force Trump to resign. Alternately, an indictment could become part of an impeachment effort should the Democrats win control of the House of Representatives in the November midterm elections.

No one is more aware of the threat posed by these developments than Trump himself.

That being said, the methods being employed by Trump's factional opponents within the ruling elite are profoundly anti-democratic. The Mueller investigation itself is based on concocted and unsubstantiated allegations of Russian "meddling" in the elections and collusion by the Trump campaign in Moscow's supposed efforts to swing the election in his favor.

This narrative, which has dominated US politics for nearly two years, has been used by the Democratic Party and most of the corporate media to attempt to whip up a war hysteria against Russia and force Trump to more rapidly escalate Washington's wars in the Middle East. It is also the pretext for the expanding campaign to censor the Internet and criminalize political dissent in the name of combating foreign-inspired "fake news."

These are the methods of palace coup, without the slightest democratic or progressive content. Should Trump be removed as a result of such a campaign, the result would be to shift the political system even further to the right.

The context for the latest revelations is a sharpening of the conflict between the Trump White House and Mueller. Over the past several weeks, Trump has reshuffled the legal team handling his dealings with the special counsel to pursue a more aggressive legal response to the investigation. Last month, Trump named former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani to head the team, following the resignation of John Dowd in March.

This week, the White House announced the resignation of Ty Cobb, who had counseled Trump to adopt a cooperative posture toward Mueller, advising that such a course would lead to a more rapid conclusion to the investigation. Not only has that not occurred, but Mueller has increased pressure on Trump to agree to an interview with his investigators.

This week, it was reported that in discussions with Trump's lawyers in March, Mueller threatened to subpoena Trump to appear before a grand jury if he did not voluntarily agree to an interview. On Wednesday, it was announced that Emmet Flood, a Republican who served as one of Bill Clinton's lawyers during the House of Representatives impeachment process in 1998, would replace Cobb.

Flood has been described in the press as a "wartime consigliere." His appointment is seen as increasing the possibility of a legal fight to block an interview with Mueller that could ultimately go to the US Supreme Court.

In a Wednesday night television interview with Fox News' Sean Hannity, Giuliani excoriated former FBI Director James Comey, whom Trump fired last May after Comey announced that the FBI was investigating possible Trump campaign collusion with Russia. Giuliani called him "a disgraceful liar" and said he should be indicted for leaking "confidential FBI information." He called the Mueller probe "a completely tainted investigation" and denounced the FBI raid on Cohen as a "storm trooper" operation.

He cited a list of 49 questions for Trump prepared by Trump's lawyers on the basis of an oral presentation by Mueller's investigators and called the wide-ranging queries concerning links to Russians and potential obstruction of justice, including the firing of Comey, a "perjury trap." The questions were leaked and published earlier this week by the New York Times . The Times , along with the Washington Post , have been in the forefront of the media witch hunt against Russia.

On the question of Trump agreeing to be interviewed by Mueller, Giuliani said, "Right now, the odds are against it."

Most of the media commentary on the interview has focused on Giuliani's statement that Trump reimbursed Cohen for the $130,000 in hush money he paid to porn star Stormy Daniels shortly before the 2016 election. Cohen has said he paid the money from his own funds and without Trump's knowledge, and last month Trump told reporters that he had no knowledge of the payoff.

It is striking that despite the media obsession with Trump and Russia, and the single-minded focus of the Democratic Party on this reactionary campaign, the public remains skeptical, if not hostile, to the entire matter. The Democrats have said virtually nothing about Trump's war on immigrants, including the barbaric treatment of the Central American caravan of refugees forced to camp out at the US border and the denial of their right to asylum. The Democratic Party has dropped its phony opposition to Trump's tax cut for corporations and the rich and barely noted the mounting assault on social programs, from Medicaid to food stamps to housing subsidies for the poor.

This is reflected in recent polls, which show Trump's approval rating actually increasing and the Democrats' edge in the coming midterm elections cut in half since the beginning of the year.

There is mass opposition in the working class and among young people to Trump and his chauvinist, militarist and pro-corporate policies. It is reflected in the upsurge of teachers' strikes and protests in defiance of the corporatist unions, which the unions and the Democrats are doing everything they can to isolate and suppress.

This emerging movement of the working class in the US and internationally is intensifying the warfare within the American ruling class and state. The crisis is being fueled not only by sharp differences over foreign policy -- including tactical differences over Trump's threat to withdraw from the Iran nuclear deal and his trade war measures -- but also by a general loss of confidence in Trump's ability to manage either the global affairs of US imperialism or the tense internal social and political situation.

The independent social and political struggle of the working class is the only basis for a progressive solution to the crisis of American capitalism. The opposition of workers to Trump can find no progressive outlet within the framework of the capitalist two-party system. Both factions in the current political wars, notwithstanding their bitter differences, agree on a strategy of expanding war abroad and austerity and repression at home.

[May 04, 2018] Sic Semper Tyrannis The Skripals survived, but their cat and rodents ... not so much.

Notable quotes:
"... I am reading Taleb's recent book "Skin in the game" which has interesting material about the disconnection between risky behaviors and their consequences in modern USA. He also has a chapter about the mechanics involved in why minority viewpoints in our culture become dominant. It's an interesting read. ..."
"... Finally, the Police partially acknowledged their mistake and accused the Russians of not having been completely fair play. Indeed, these thuriferous bastards of Vlad the Impaler had put poison on the OUTDOOR handle of the front door of the house. It's infinitely subtle of these savages. The Brit Police did not suspect what strong part it had to make, the unexpected thwarting its learned calculations. Presumption, again and again. Nevertheless, the detectives are formal: the Russians did the trick well. The evidence is obvious. In this dramatic case, we are not going to make a comparison between insular and continental logic. The hour is too serious for these trifles. Lots of laughter. ..."
"... It's very difficult in any case to believe that such a notice could have been issued. Can't see why it would be needed. The scripting of the official story on such matters as this seems to be a joint enterprise between the media and the press officers. That's a time-honoured consensus so why would the media need bullying to stay in line? ..."
"... My personal view on all this is that the No. 10 press officers aren't that good at this new-fangled information stuff. They don't seem to have their hearts in it somehow. Time for them to go back to counting paperclips and for information campaigns to be handled by the experts. The BBC have a proven track record in this field and it's time that was officially recognised. ..."
May 03, 2018 | turcopolier.typepad.com

Sir Mark, bless him, has told an MP during a committee meeting, that the armed forces, MI-5, MI-6 and GCHQ do not know who or indeed what sickened the Skripals, pere et fille , in Salisbury. He doesn't seem to have mentioned the police. So, basically, pilgrims, Teresa May, the queen's first minister has insistently and incessantly accused the Russians of a crime of which our British cousins know precious little. In a closely related development, it is now revealed that the Britishers sealed up Skripal's house after the poisoning event leaving the black Persian shown above and two guinea pigs to die of thirst and hunger within. It would seem likely that they knew they were doing this since they would have searched the house first. No? Perhaps they thought that the cat might be a threat as a being of possible Iranian descent. This is impressive stuff. pl https://www.usnews.com/news/world/articles/2018-05-01/uk-has-not-yet-identified-skripal-poisoning-suspects


Eric Newhill , 11 hours ago

These false flag ops are all so shabby in their execution. The lack of thoroughness and imagination on the part of the governments running them is really disappointing. For example, if I was running an investigation into the Skripal incident, I would have captured the cat and rodents and run pathology tests on them to see what bio/chem agents might be in their systems. Also, because they might escape and become a vector of further infection. That seems like it would be SOP. So I'd do it even if I knew the story was BS to create the appearance of reality. Then, I could always state that the pets should signs of Russian engineered bio/chem agents. Could even create a video of the pets dying some horrible death due to the agents. That's more better BS.
Threadzilla , 11 hours ago
And yet, this appears to be a lie as well. An earlier piece in the British news claims the pets were taken to Porton Down for examination and testing soon after the incident. Seems more likely they eliminated evidence and then came up with the cover story about how the animals were "forgotten about" and locked in the house for a month, implying totally unimportant for the investigation. http://metro.co.uk/2018/03/...
JohnA , 12 hours ago
I am truly dis-May-ed!

I hope she and Johnson pay the price for this folly. May it be steep! Very. very steep.

How these two suckered so many nations foolishly into sending diplomats home reflected respect for UK policy toward Russia. These nations will need to think long and hard about following any such UK lead in future.

This week, the US took down the Russian flag flying over Russian real estate in Seattle. Shameful!

Sid Finster -> JohnA , 9 hours ago
Sociopaths care nothing for law and everything for enforcement.
Jack , 4 hours ago
I don't know much about the dynamics of British politics but as a light observer of British news I wonder why Theresa May remains prime minister? She became prime minister after the historic Brexit vote. Promptly takes the country to an election and botches it for the Tories. Then bungles the Brexit negotiations. Runs a floundering government. Now comes up with accusations against the Russians in the Skripal affair with no evidence presented but looking more foolish as her story comes under scrutiny.
DH , 11 hours ago
Thirst, yes, hunger, not so much.
Tony , 11 hours ago
I am reading Taleb's recent book "Skin in the game" which has interesting material about the disconnection between risky behaviors and their consequences in modern USA. He also has a chapter about the mechanics involved in why minority viewpoints in our culture become dominant. It's an interesting read.
Sid Finster , 10 hours ago
http://www.theblogmire.com/...
France74 , 10 hours ago
A french view and laughter.

2 cats and 2 guinea pigs were locked up for 9 days in Skipal's house, in the hope of proving that the Russians are guilty.
When the police reopened the house, they found four bodies. the veterinary faculty is positive, both cats died of starvation. Guinea pigs, some say, began to be worked by hungry cats, accelerating their deaths. Unspeakable bloodshed. In this whole case, it's THE revolting detail, among many others. Poor beasts.

Finally, the Police partially acknowledged their mistake and accused the Russians of not having been completely fair play. Indeed, these thuriferous bastards of Vlad the Impaler had put poison on the OUTDOOR handle of the front door of the house. It's infinitely subtle of these savages. The Brit Police did not suspect what strong part it had to make, the unexpected thwarting its learned calculations. Presumption, again and again. Nevertheless, the detectives are formal: the Russians did the trick well. The evidence is obvious. In this dramatic case, we are not going to make a comparison between insular and continental logic. The hour is too serious for these trifles.
Lots of laughter.

kao_hsien_chih , 11 hours ago
Great. There was once a war for Jenkins' ear. I guess we should now have a nuclear war for Skripals' cat.
English Outsider -> kao_hsien_chih , 9 hours ago
Colonel,

There's talk of a D-Notice covering the Skripal affair. Seems unlikely. All concerned were being sat on quite satisfactorily anyway.

I Looked up D-notices on WIKI -

https://en.wikipedia.org/wi...

Presumably there are bigger guns in the background if information that would really threaten national security or the lives of serving officers is in danger of being released. The D-Notice system itself seems to be a more or less voluntary affair -

https://www.theguardian.com...

It's very difficult in any case to believe that such a notice could have been issued. Can't see why it would be needed. The scripting of the official story on such matters as this seems to be a joint enterprise between the media and the press officers. That's a time-honoured consensus so why would the media need bullying to stay in line?

My personal view on all this is that the No. 10 press officers aren't that good at this new-fangled information stuff. They don't seem to have their hearts in it somehow. Time for them to go back to counting paperclips and for information campaigns to be handled by the experts. The BBC have a proven track record in this field and it's time that was officially recognised.

[May 04, 2018] Media Use Disinformation To Accuse Russia Of Spreading Such by b

Highly recommended!
Notable quotes:
"... A McClatchy journalist investigated further and came to the same conclusion as I did. The 'leak' to the New York Times was disinformation. ..."
"... Russia has not pinned the Novichok to Sweden or the Czech Republic. It said, correctly, that several countries produced Novichok. Russia did not blame the UK for the 'nerve gas attack' in Syria. Russia says that there was no gas attack in Douma. ..."
"... The claims of Russian disinformation these authors make to not hold up to scrutiny. Meanwhile there pieces themselves are full of lies, distortions and, yes, disinformation. ..."
"... Wait for an outbreak of hostilities on the Ukraine-Donbass front shortly before the beginning of the World Cup competition which is as internationally important as the Olympic Games -- as they did in 2014 with Maidan and 2016 with the Sochi Winter Olympics drug uproar, the CIA will create chaos that will take the emphasis off any Russian success, since as to them, anything negative regarding Russia is a positive for them. ..."
"... No traces of chemical weapons have been found in Douma. This means that not only the US/UK/French airstrikes were illegal under international law but even their political justification was inherently flawed. Similarly, in the Salisbury affair, no evidence of Russian involvement has been presented, while the two myths on which the British case was built (the Russian origin of the chemical substance used and the existence of proof of Russian responsibility) have been shattered. ..."
"... Given the lack of facts, the Tory leadership seems to be adopting a truly Orwellian logic: that the main proof of Russian responsibility are the Russian denials! It is hard to see how they will be able to sell this to their international partners. Self-respecting countries of G20 would not be willing to risk their reputation. ..."
"... The detail of b's analysis that stands out to me as especially significant and brilliant is his demolition of the Guardian's reuse of the Merkel "quote." ..."
"... Related to the above, consider the nature of the recently christened thought-crime, "whataboutism." The crime may be defined as follows: "Whataboutism" is the attempt to understand a truth asserted by propaganda by way of relation to other truths it has asserted contemporaneous with or prior to this one. It is to ask, "What about this *other* truth? Does this *other* truth affect our understanding of *this* truth? And if so, how does it?" ..."
"... Whataboutism seems to deny that each asserted truth stands on its own, and has no essential relation to any other past, present, or future asserted truth. ..."
"... 1984, anyone? ..."
"... The absurd story that the OPCW says there was a 100gm/100mg who knows which on the door and other sites is just so stupid its painful. ..."
"... Presumably the Skripals touch the cutlery, plates and wine glasses in the restaurant, so why weren't the staff there infected as they must have had to pick up the plates etc after the meal. Even the door to the entrance of the restaurant should be affected as they would have to push it open, thus leaving the chemical for other people to touch. Nope, nothing in this stupid story adds up and the OPCW can't even get the amounts of the chemical right. ..."
"... Biggest problem with the world today is lazy insouciant citizens. ..."
"... One very important point Lavrov made was the anti-Russian group consists of a very small number of nations representing a small fraction of humanity; ..."
"... while they have some economic and military clout, it's possible for the rest of the world's nations to sideline them and get on with the important business of forming a genuine Multipolar World Order, which is what the UN and its Charter envisioned. ..."
"... Anything that may not confirm to the 'truth' as prescribed from above must be overwhelmed with an onslaught of more lies or, if that does not work, be discredited as 'enemy' disinformation. ..."
"... Yes, exactly. The Western hegemony, i.e. the true "Axis of Evil" led by the US, and including the EU and non-Western allies, have invented the Perpetual Big Lie™. ..."
"... Witnesses? They're either confederates, dupes, or terrified by coercion. Evidence and/or technical analysis? All faked! A nominally reliable party, e.g. the president of the Czech Republic, makes statements that undermine the Big Lie Nexus? Again-- he's either been bought off or frightened into making such inconvenient claims. Or he's just a mischievous liar. ..."
"... And, as I seemingly never get tired of pointing out, the Perpetual Big Lie™ strategy arose, and succeeds, because the "natural enemies" of authoritarian government overreach have been coerced or co-opted to a fare-thee-well. So mass-media venues, and even supposedly independent technical and scientific organizations, are part of the Perpetual Big Lie™ apparatus. ..."
"... Putting Kudrin -- an opponent of de-dollarization and an upholder of the Washington Consensus -- in charge of Russia's international outreach would be equal to putting Bill Clinton in charge of a girls' school. ..."
"... In the Guardian I only read the comments, never the article. Here, I read both. That is the difference between propaganda and good reporting. ..."
May 04, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

The Grauniad is slipping deeper into the disinformation business: Revealed: UK's push to strengthen anti-Russia alliance is the headline of a page one piece which reveals exactly nothing. There is no secret lifted and no one was discomforted by a questioning journalist.

Like other such pieces it uses disinformation to accuse Russia of spreading such.

The main 'revelation' is stenographed from a British government official. Some quotes from the usual anti-Russian propagandists were added. Dubious or false 'western' government claims are held up as truth. That Russia does not endorse them is proof for Russian mischievousness and its 'disinformation'.

The opener:

The UK will use a series of international summits this year to call for a comprehensive strategy to combat Russian disinformation and urge a rethink over traditional diplomatic dialogue with Moscow, following the Kremlin's aggressive campaign of denials over the use of chemical weapons in the UK and Syria.
...
"The foreign secretary regards Russia's response to Douma and Salisbury as a turning point and thinks there is international support to do more," a Whitehall official said. "The areas the UK are most likely to pursue are countering Russian disinformation and finding a mechanism to enforce accountability for the use of chemical weapons."

There is a mechanism to enforce accountability for the use of chemical weapons. It is the Chemical Weapon Convention and the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW). It was the British government which at first rejected the use of these instruments during the Skripal incident:

Early involvement of the OPCW, as demanded by Russia, was resisted by the British government. Only on March 14, ten days after the incident happened and two days after Prime Minister Theresa may had made accusations against Russia, did the British government invite the OPCW. Only on March 19, 15 days after the incident happen did the OPCW technical team arrive and took blood samples.

Now back to the Guardian disinformation:

In making its case to foreign ministries, the UK is arguing that Russian denials over Salisbury and Douma reveal a state uninterested in cooperating to reach a common understanding of the truth , but instead using both episodes to try systematically to divide western electorates and sow doubt.

A 'common understanding of the truth' is an interesting term. What is the truth? Whatever the British government claims? It accused Russia of the Skripal incident a mere eight days after it happened. Now, two month later, it admits that it does not know who poisoned the Skripals:

Police and intelligence agencies have failed so far to identify the individual or individuals who carried out the nerve agent attack in Salisbury, the UK's national security adviser has disclosed.

Do the Brits know where the alleged Novichok poison came from? Unless they produced it themselves they likely have no idea. The Czech Republic just admitted that it made small doses of a Novichok nerve agent for testing purposes. Others did too.

Back to the Guardian :

British politicians are not alone in claiming Russia's record of mendacity is not a personal trait of Putin's, but a government-wide strategy that makes traditional diplomacy ineffective.

Angela Merkel, the German chancellor, famously came off one lengthy phone call with Putin – she had more than 40 in a year – to say he lived in a different world.

No, Merkel never said that. An Obama administration flunky planted that in the New York Times :

Chancellor Angela Merkel of Germany told Mr. Obama by telephone on Sunday that after speaking with Mr. Putin she was not sure he was in touch with reality, people briefed on the call said. "In another world," she said.

When that claim was made in March 2014 we were immediately suspicious of it:

This does not sound like typically Merkel but rather strange for her. I doubt that she said that the way the "people briefed on the call" told it to the Times stenographer. It is rather an attempt to discredit Merkel and to make it more difficult for her to find a solution with Russia outside of U.S. control.

A day later the German government denied (ger) that Merkel ever said such (my translation):

The chancellery is unhappy about the report in the New York Times. Merkel by no means meant to express that Putin behaved irrational. In fact she told Obama that Putin has a different perspective about the Crimea [than Obama has].

A McClatchy journalist investigated further and came to the same conclusion as I did. The 'leak' to the New York Times was disinformation.

That disinformation, spread by the Obama administration but immediately exposed as false, is now held up as proof by Patrick Wintour, the Diplomatic editor of the Guardian , that Russia uses disinformation and that Putin is a naughty man.

The British Defense Minister Gavin Williamson wants journalists to enter the UK reserve forces to help with the creation of propaganda:

He said army recruitment should be about "looking to different people who maybe think, as a journalist: 'What are my skills in terms of how are they relevant to the armed forces?'

Patrick Wintour seems to be a qualified candidate.

Or maybe he should join the NATO for Information Warfare the Atlantic Council wants to create to further disinform about those damned Russkies:

What we need now is a cross-border defense alliance against disinformation -- call it Communications NATO. Such an alliance is, in fact, nearly as important as its military counterpart.

Like the Guardian piece above writer of the NATO propaganda lobby Atlantic Council makes claims of Russian disinformation that do not hold up to the slightest test:

By pinning the Novichok nerve agent on Sweden or the Czech Republic, or blaming the UK for the nerve gas attack in Syria, the Kremlin sows confusion among our populations and makes us lose trust in our institutions.

Russia has not pinned the Novichok to Sweden or the Czech Republic. It said, correctly, that several countries produced Novichok. Russia did not blame the UK for the 'nerve gas attack' in Syria. Russia says that there was no gas attack in Douma.

The claims of Russian disinformation these authors make to not hold up to scrutiny. Meanwhile there pieces themselves are full of lies, distortions and, yes, disinformation.

The bigger aim behind all these activities, demanding a myriad of new organizations to propagandize against Russia, is to introduce a strict control over information within 'western' societies.

Anything that may not confi