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Deep State

News Media-Military-Industrial Complex Recommended Books Recommended Links National Security State / Surveillance State Big Uncle is Watching You  US and British media are servants of security apparatus
 Nation under attack meme Fake News scare and US NeoMcCartyism Trump vs. Deep State Anti Trump Hysteria Anti-Russian hysteria in connection emailgate and DNC leak Neoconservatism New American Militarism
Jingoism of the US neoliberal elite American Exceptionalism Corporatism Neo-fascism Inverted Totalitarism Bureaucracies Bureaucracy as a Political Coalition
Neoliberalism as a New Form of Corporatism  The Pareto Law Amorality of neoliberal elite Casino Capitalism Ayn Rand and Objectivism Cult Pluralism as a myth What's the Matter with Kansas
Neoliberal Brainwashing: Journalism in the Service of the Powerful Few The Guardian Slips Beyond the Reach of Embarrassment The importance of controlling the narrative  Patterns of Propaganda Corruption of Regulators Two Party System as polyarchy Audacioues Oligarchy and Loss of Trust
Hillary "Warmonger" Clinton - unsuccessful deep state candidate for presidency US Presidential Elections of 2016 as a referendum on neoliberal globalization Swiftboating Trump: Khan gambit against Trump at the Democratic Convention Obama: a yet another Neocon Neocon foreign policy is a disaster for the USA Robert Kagan Paul Wolfowitz
Wrecking Crew: Notes on Republican Economic Policy Libertarian Philosophy In Goldman Sachs we trust: classic example of regulatory capture by financial system hackers Groupthink Skeptic Quotations Humor Etc

Introduction


DEEP STATE n. A hard-to-perceive level of government or super-control that exists regardless of elections and that may thwart popular movements or radical change. Some have said that Egypt is being manipulated by its deep state.

A Wordnado of Words in 2013 - NYTimes.com , Dec 21, 2013

"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.... I never had any thought that when I set up the CIA that it would be injected into peacetime cloak and dagger operations."

President Harry Truman

"For we are opposed around the world by a monolithic and ruthless conspiracy that relies primarily on covert means for expanding its sphere of influence - on infiltration instead of invasion, on subversion instead of elections, on intimidation instead of free choice, on guerrillas by night instead of armies by day.

It is a system which has conscripted vast human and material resources into the building of a tightly knit, highly efficient machine that combines military, diplomatic, intelligence, economic, scientific and political operations. Its preparations are concealed, not published. Its mistakes are buried not headlined. Its dissenters are silenced, not praised. No expenditure is questioned, no rumor is printed, no secret is revealed."

President John_F._Kennedy, speech on April 27, 1961

In a way the concept of  Corporatism and the concept of  "deep state' are very close, almost synonyms. Corporatism presuppose the merger of government and corporations. It can be done openly as was the case in Mussolini Italy or via back door, "revolving door" mechanism as it was done in the USA. In the latter case part of power of 'surface state" is preserved.

But there are agencies that get special status under corporatism. this is so called three-letter agencies (which actually is the backbone of Media-Military-Industrial Complex). Or national security establishment. This is new unelected aristocracy with huge financial resources that stands above law and can't be easily demotes from their positions (J. Edgar Hoover  is an excellent example here).  They now are a new incarnation of "royal court", which can like in old times is able to dismiss a monarch or even kill him.

So in a way the concept of "deep state" -- hypertrophied role of three letter agencies and their brass and certain corporations (aka military industrial complex) in national politics especially in formulating foreign policy is nothing new. But devil is always in details and some features of the USA deep state are different then our analogy predicts.

First of all "surface state" is still keeping some positions and even try to counterattack deep state in certain areas. Second, the merger of interests of three letter agencies like CIA/NSA and Wall Street can never be absolute as they have different worldviews on both the USA foreign policy priorities and methods of achieving them. They only partially coincide.  Also relations between three letter agencies are far from harmonious at all with CIA ('humint") very concerned about recent rise of status and capabilities of NSA ("sigint").  So in certain areas they are more like spiders in the cage with CIA perfectly capable attacking NSA and vise versa, and that gives us some hope. 

Two party system invented by elite of Great Britain proved to be perfect for inverted totalitarism type of regimes, including the US neoliberalism.  But there is second trend here which increase the elite control of the county:  this is dramatic transfer of power to institutions of "deep state", which in certain sense now like TBTF are beyond civil  control. As well as a secret alliance between Wall Street and CIA and other three letter agencies.

All those factors essentially make Presidential and Congress election in the USA truly optional, serving mostly ceremonial, decorative function. Yes elections still continue to exist and sometime provide good theater, within the strict rules of an emasculated "two parties, winner takes all" system, ehich if you think about it is not that different from one party elections in the USSR.

They still have a role in legitimizing the current rulers, although actual rules are not the same as those who were elected. This is especially true about the two recent US Presidents: George W Bush and Brack Obama.  And that explains why Barack Obama foreign policy is essentially a continuation of policy of George W Bush with minor tweaks.  Just the fact that neocon Victoria Nuland who worked for Cheney was promoted to the key role of the  Assistant Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs  tells that Obama controls very little in foreign policy area and that 'deep state" is functioning autonomously and without control of "surface state".

The USA political system does not have a single government. It actually has two distinct governments. They are called "surface state" or Madisonians and "deep state" or Trumanites (national security establishment in alliance with selected members of financial oligarchy, media owners and technocrats). The latter term emerged because it was Harry Truman who signed National Security Act of 1947  which created major three letter agencies (CIA, DOD, FBI and NSA).

Simplifying the complex relation between those two US governments (sometimes Madisonians fight back and have Trumanites to make a temporary retreat) we can say that:

Conversion of system of governance to "deep state" which happened in the USA almost immediately after 1947 essentially made elections optional, but they still continue to exist as a ceremonial function for the sake of providing the legitimacy in an emasculated "two parties system" form.  While relationship is more complex then simple dominance, in essence "deep state" is the tail that wag the dog. And JFK assassination (Nov 22, 1963)  meant first of all the triumph of "deep state" over "surface state". In this sense 9/11 was just the last nail in the coffin of democracy.

The term “Deep State” was coined in Turkey (and actually Wikipedia discusses only it) but it is widespread modern phenomenon which can also be found in most other states. The term means a shadow alliance of elements of government. security services, selected top-level figures of financial oligarchy, media and industry that is effectively able to govern the United States without reference to the consent of the governed as expressed through the formal political process. As any elite dominance project it is deeply anti-democratic although it uses fig leaf of democracy for foreign expansion via color revolutions and wars. 

Like in Third Reich this dominance is supported by relentless propaganda and brainwashing with mechanisms polished since Reagan to perfection. There is now no problem to create an "enemy of the people" when the elite wants and it does not matter which country or individual is selected as an enemy. The essence of elite politics in this area was best formulated by Hermann Goering, President of the Reichstag, Nazi Party, and Luftwaffe Commander in Chief

Naturally the common people don't want war: Neither in Russia, nor in England, nor for that matter in Germany. That is understood. But, after all, it is the leaders of the country who determine the policy and it is always a simple matter to drag the people along, whether it is a democracy, or a fascist dictatorship, or a parliament, or a communist dictatorship. Voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked, and denounce the peacemakers for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. It works the same in any country.

In other words this is a hidden set of political actors and powerful institutions that are concealed within the wider, “visible” state which, essentially, took over the functions of traditional state, leaving such organization of Executive branch, President, congress and courts mainly ceremonial role. Such transformation is well explained by the The Iron Law of Oligarchy and in various forms happened in Third Reich, the USSR, Turkey, China and many other countries.

Mike Lofgren: the “deep state” is the Washington-Wall-Street-Silicon-Valley Establishment

Here is how The American Conservative covers this topic:

Steve Sailer links to this unsettling essay by former career Congressional staffer Mike Lofgren, who says the “deep state” — the Washington-Wall-Street-Silicon-Valley Establishment — is a far greater threat to liberty than you think. The partisan rancor and gridlock in Washington conceals a more fundamental and pervasive agreement.

Excerpts:

These are not isolated instances of a contradiction; they have been so pervasive that they tend to be disregarded as background noise. During the time in 2011 when political warfare over the debt ceiling was beginning to paralyze the business of governance in Washington, the United States government somehow summoned the resources to overthrow Muammar Ghaddafi’s regime in Libya, and, when the instability created by that coup spilled over into Mali, provide overt and covert assistance to French intervention there. At a time when there was heated debate about continuing meat inspections and civilian air traffic control because of the budget crisis, our government was somehow able to commit $115 million to keeping a civil war going in Syria and to pay at least £100m to the United Kingdom’s Government Communications Headquarters to buy influence over and access to that country’s intelligence. Since 2007, two bridges carrying interstate highways have collapsed due to inadequate maintenance of infrastructure, one killing 13 people. During that same period of time, the government spent $1.7 billion constructing a building in Utah that is the size of 17 football fields. This mammoth structure is intended to allow the National Security Agency to store a yottabyte of information, the largest numerical designator computer scientists have coined. A yottabyte is equal to 500 quintillion pages of text. They need that much storage to archive every single trace of your electronic life.

Yes, there is another government concealed behind the one that is visible at either end of Pennsylvania Avenue, a hybrid entity of public and private institutions ruling the country according to consistent patterns in season and out, connected to, but only intermittently controlled by, the visible state whose leaders we choose. My analysis of this phenomenon is not an exposé of a secret, conspiratorial cabal; the state within a state is hiding mostly in plain sight, and its operators mainly act in the light of day. Nor can this other government be accurately termed an “establishment.” All complex societies have an establishment, a social network committed to its own enrichment and perpetuation. In terms of its scope, financial resources and sheer global reach, the American hybrid state, the Deep State, is in a class by itself. That said, it is neither omniscient nor invincible. The institution is not so much sinister (although it has highly sinister aspects) as it is relentlessly well entrenched. Far from being invincible, its failures, such as those in Iraq, Afghanistan and Libya, are routine enough that it is only the Deep State’s protectiveness towards its higher-ranking personnel that allows them to escape the consequences of their frequent ineptitude.
 

More:

Washington is the most important node of the Deep State that has taken over America, but it is not the only one. Invisible threads of money and ambition connect the town to other nodes. One is Wall Street, which supplies the cash that keeps the political machine quiescent and operating as a diversionary marionette theater. Should the politicians forget their lines and threaten the status quo, Wall Street floods the town with cash and lawyers to help the hired hands remember their own best interests. The executives of the financial giants even have de facto criminal immunity. On March 6, 2013, testifying before the Senate Judiciary Committee, Attorney General Eric Holder stated the following: “I am concerned that the size of some of these institutions becomes so large that it does become difficult for us to prosecute them when we are hit with indications that if you do prosecute, if you do bring a criminal charge, it will have a negative impact on the national economy, perhaps even the world economy.” This, from the chief law enforcement officer of a justice system that has practically abolished the constitutional right to trial for poorer defendants charged with certain crimes. It is not too much to say that Wall Street may be the ultimate owner of the Deep State and its strategies, if for no other reason than that it has the money to reward government operatives with a second career that is lucrative beyond the dreams of avarice — certainly beyond the dreams of a salaried government employee. [3]

The corridor between Manhattan and Washington is a well trodden highway for the personalities we have all gotten to know in the period since the massive deregulation of Wall Street: Robert Rubin, Lawrence Summers, Henry Paulson, Timothy Geithner and many others. Not all the traffic involves persons connected with the purely financial operations of the government: In 2013, General David Petraeus joined KKR (formerly Kohlberg Kravis Roberts) of 9 West 57th Street, New York, a private equity firm with $62.3 billion in assets. KKR specializes in management buyouts and leveraged finance. General Petraeus’ expertise in these areas is unclear. His ability to peddle influence, however, is a known and valued commodity. Unlike Cincinnatus, the military commanders of the Deep State do not take up the plow once they lay down the sword. Petraeus also obtained a sinecure as a non-resident senior fellow at theBelfer Center for Science and International Affairs at Harvard. The Ivy League is, of course, the preferred bleaching tub and charm school of the American oligarchy.

Lofgren goes on to say that Silicon Valley is a node of the Deep State too, and that despite the protestations of its chieftains against NSA spying, it’s a vital part of the Deep State’s apparatus. More:

The Deep State is the big story of our time. It is the red thread that runs through the war on terrorism, the financialization and deindustrialization of the American economy, the rise of a plutocratic social structure and political dysfunction. Washington is the headquarters of the Deep State, and its time in the sun as a rival to Rome, Constantinople or London may be term-limited by its overweening sense of self-importance and its habit, as Winwood Reade said of Rome, to “live upon its principal till ruin stared it in the face.”

Read the whole thing.  Steve Sailer says that the Shallow State is a complement to the Deep State. The Shallow State is, I think, another name for what the Neoreactionaries call “The Cathedral,” defined thus:

The Cathedral — The self-organizing consensus of Progressives and Progressive ideology represented by the universities, the media, and the civil service. A term coined by blogger Mencius Moldbug. The Cathedral has no central administrator, but represents a consensus acting as a coherent group that condemns other ideologies as evil. Community writers have enumerated the platform of Progressivism as women’s suffrage, prohibition, abolition, federal income tax, democratic election of senators, labor laws, desegregation, popularization of drugs, destruction of traditional sexual norms, ethnic studies courses in colleges, decolonization, and gay marriage. A defining feature of Progressivism is that “you believe that morality has been essentially solved, and all that’s left is to work out the details.” Reactionaries see Republicans as Progressives, just lagging 10-20 years behind Democrats in their adoption of Progressive norms.

You don’t have to agree with the Neoreactionaries on what they condemn — women’s suffrage? desegregation? labor laws? really?? — to acknowledge that they’re onto something about the sacred consensus that all Right-Thinking People share. I would love to see a study comparing the press coverage from 9/11 leading up to the Iraq War with press coverage of the gay marriage issue from about 2006 till today. Specifically, I’d be curious to know about how thoroughly the media covered the cases against the policies that the Deep State and the Shallow State decided should prevail. I’m not suggesting a conspiracy here, not at all. I’m only thinking back to how it seemed so obvious to me in 2002 that we should go to war with Iraq, so perfectly clear that the only people who opposed it were fools or villains. The same consensus has emerged around same-sex marriage. I know how overwhelmingly the news media have believed this for some time, such that many American journalists simply cannot conceive that anyone against same-sex marriage is anything other than a fool or a villain. Again, this isn’t a conspiracy; it’s in the nature of the thing. Lofgren:

Cultural assimilation is partly a matter of what psychologist Irving L. Janis called “groupthink,” the chameleon-like ability of people to adopt the views of their superiors and peers. This syndrome is endemic to Washington: The town is characterized by sudden fads, be it negotiating biennial budgeting, making grand bargains or invading countries. Then, after a while, all the town’s cool kids drop those ideas as if they were radioactive. As in the military, everybody has to get on board with the mission, and questioning it is not a career-enhancing move. The universe of people who will critically examine the goings-on at the institutions they work for is always going to be a small one. As Upton Sinclair said, “It is difficult to get a man to understand something when his salary depends upon his not understanding it.”

A more elusive aspect of cultural assimilation is the sheer dead weight of the ordinariness of it all once you have planted yourself in your office chair for the 10,000th time. Government life is typically not some vignette from an Allen Drury novel about intrigue under the Capitol dome. Sitting and staring at the clock on the off-white office wall when it’s 11:00 in the evening and you are vowing never, ever to eat another piece of takeout pizza in your life is not an experience that summons the higher literary instincts of a would-be memoirist. After a while, a functionary of the state begins to hear things that, in another context, would be quite remarkable, or at least noteworthy, and yet that simply bounce off one’s consciousness like pebbles off steel plate: “You mean the number of terrorist groups we are fighting is classified?” No wonder so few people are whistle-blowers, quite apart from the vicious retaliation whistle-blowing often provokes: Unless one is blessed with imagination and a fine sense of irony, growing immune to the curiousness of one’s surroundings is easy. To paraphrase the inimitable Donald Rumsfeld, I didn’t know all that I knew, at least until I had had a couple of years away from the government to reflect upon it.

When all you know is the people who surround you in your professional class bubble and your social circles, you can think the whole world agrees with you, or should. It’s probably not a coincidence that the American media elite live, work, and socialize in New York and Washington, the two cities that were attacked on 9/11, and whose elites — political, military, financial — were so genuinely traumatized by the events.

Anyway, that’s just a small part of it, about how the elite media manufacture consent. Here’s a final quote, one from the Moyers interview with Lofgren:

BILL MOYERS: If, as you write, the ideology of the Deep State is not democrat or republican, not left or right, what is it?

MIKE LOFGREN: It’s an ideology. I just don’t think we’ve named it. It’s a kind of corporatism. Now, the actors in this drama tend to steer clear of social issues. They pretend to be merrily neutral servants of the state, giving the best advice possible on national security or financial matters. But they hold a very deep ideology of the Washington consensus at home, which is deregulation, outsourcing, de-industrialization and financialization. And they believe in American exceptionalism abroad, which is boots on the ground everywhere, it’s our right to meddle everywhere in the world. And the result of that is perpetual war.

This can’t last. We’d better hope it can’t last. And we’d better hope it unwinds peacefully.

I, for one, remain glad that so many of us Americans are armed. When the Deep State collapses — and it will one day — it’s not going to be a happy time.

Questions to the room: Is a Gorbachev for the Deep State conceivable? That is, could you foresee a political leader emerging who could unwind the ideology and apparatus of the Deep State, and not only survive, but succeed? Or is it impossible for the Deep State to allow such a figure to thrive? Or is the Deep State, like the Soviet system Gorbachev failed to reform, too entrenched and too far gone to reform itself? If so, what then?

Professor Michael J. Glennon   book “National Security and Double Government.”

The second important thinker in this area is  Professor Michael J. Glennon who wrote the book  “National Security and Double Government.”. The strong point of his views on the subject is that he assumes that there is an internal struggle between those two forms of government, not just passive submission one to nother, but in most cases deep state prevails. This move led the USA "beyond a mere imperial presidency to a bifurcated system — a structure of double government — in which even the President now exercises little substantive control over the overall direction of U.S. national security policy."

The "deep state" (call by Professor Michael J. Glennon) The Trumanites, exersize their power due to alliance with Wall Street, almost unlimited funding (with many hidden sources belong US budget),  higher efficiency, abuse of secrecy, exaggerated threats, peer pressure to conform, and corruption of  the key decision-makers.

Here is how Amazon reviewer Mal Warwick summarized the book in his review written on December 22, 2014

Who makes national security decisions? Not who you think!

Why does Barack Obama's performance on national security issues in the White House contrast so strongly with his announced intentions as a candidate in 2008? After all, not only has Obama continued most of the Bush policies he decried when he ran for the presidency, he has doubled down on government surveillance, drone strikes, and other critical programs.

Michael J. Glennon set out to answer this question in his unsettling new book, National Security and Double Government. And he clearly dislikes what he found.

The answer, Glennon discovered, is that the US government is divided between the three official branches of the government, on the one hand — the "Madisonian" institutions incorporated into the Constitution — and the several hundred unelected officials who do the real work of a constellation of military and intelligence agencies, on the other hand. These officials, called "Trumanites" in Glennon's parlance for having grown out of the national security infrastructure established under Harry Truman, make the real decisions in the area of national security. (To wage the Cold War, Truman created the Joint Chiefs of Staff, the Department of Defense, the CIA, the NSA, and the National Security Council.) "The United States has, in short," Glennon writes, "moved beyond a mere imperial presidency to a bifurcated system — a structure of double government — in which even the President now exercises little substantive control over the overall direction of U.S. national security policy. . . . The perception of threat, crisis, and emergency has been the seminal phenomenon that has created and nurtures America's double government." If Al Qaeda hadn't existed, the Trumanite network would have had to create it — and, Glennon seems to imply, might well have done so.

The Trumanites wield their power with practiced efficiency, using secrecy, exaggerated threats, peer pressure to conform, and the ability to mask the identity of the key decision-maker as their principal tools.

Michael J. Glennon comes to this task with unexcelled credentials. A professor of international law at Tufts and former legal counsel for the Senate Armed Services Committee, he came face to face on a daily basis with the "Trumanites" he writes about. National Security and Double Government is exhaustively researched and documented: notes constitute two-thirds of this deeply disturbing little book.

The more I learn about how politics and government actually work — and I've learned a fair amount in my 73 years — the more pessimistic I become about the prospects for democracy in America. In some ways, this book is the most worrisome I've read over the years, because it implies that there is no reason whatsoever to think that things can ever get better. In other words, to borrow a phrase from the Borg on Star Trek, "resistance is futile." That's a helluva takeaway, isn't it?

On reflection, what comes most vividly to mind is a comment from the late Chalmers Johnson on a conference call in which I participated several years ago. Johnson, formerly a consultant to the CIA and a professor at two campuses of the University of California (Berkeley and later San Diego), was the author of many books, including three that awakened me to many of the issues Michael Glennon examines: Blowback, The Sorrows of Empire, and Nemesis. Johnson, who was then nearly 80 and in declining health, was asked by a student what he would recommend for young Americans who want to combat the menace of the military-industrial complex. "Move to Vancouver," he said.

Another good summary of the book can be found is review by Bruce Morgan (Shadow Government )

October 28, 2014 | Tufts Now

Elected officials are no longer in charge of our national security—and that is undermining our democracy, says the Fletcher School's Michael Glennon

Michael Glennon in his office

"We are clearly on the path to autocracy," says Michael Glennon. "There's no question that if we continue on that path, [the] Congress, the courts and the presidency will ultimately end up . . . as institutional museum pieces." Photo: Kelvin Ma

Michael Glennon knew of the book, and had cited it in his classes many times, but he had never gotten around to reading the thing from cover to cover. Last year he did, jolted page after page with its illuminating message for our time.

The book was The English Constitution, an analysis by 19th-century journalist Walter Bagehot that laid bare the dual nature of British governance. It suggested that one part of government was for popular consumption, and another more hidden part was for real, consumed with getting things done in the world. As he read, Glennon, a professor of international law at the Fletcher School, where he also teaches constitutional law, saw distinct parallels with the current American political scene.

He decided to explore the similarities in a 30-page paper that he sent around to a number of his friends, asking them to validate or refute his argument. As it happens, Glennon's friends were an extraordinarily well-informed bunch, mostly seasoned operatives in the CIA, the U.S. State Department and the military. "Look," he told them. "I'm thinking of writing a book. Tell me if this is wrong." Every single one responded, "What you have here is exactly right."

Expanded from that original brief paper, Glennon's book National Security and Double Government (Oxford University Press) takes our political system to task, arguing that the people running our government are not our visible elected officials but high-level—and unaccountable—bureaucrats nestled atop government agencies.

Glennon's informed critique of the American political system comes from a place of deep regard. Glennon says he can remember driving into Washington, D.C., in the late spring of 1973, at the time of the Senate Watergate hearings, straight from law school at the University of Minnesota, to take his first job as assistant legislative counsel to the U.S. Senate. Throughout his 20s, he worked in government, culminating in his position as legal counsel to the Senate Foreign Relations Committee under Sen. Frank Church from 1977 to 1980. Since entering academic life in the early 1980s, Glennon has been a frequent consultant to government agencies of all stripes, as well as a regular commentator on media outlets such as NPR's All Things Considered, the Today show and Nightline.

In his new book, an inescapable sadness underlies the narrative. "I feel a great sense of loss," Glennon admits. "I devoted my life to these [democratic] institutions, and it's not easy to see how to throw the current trends into reverse." Tufts Now spoke with Glennon recently to learn more of his perspective.

Tufts Now: You've been both an insider and an outsider with regard to government affairs. What led you to write this book?

Michael Glennon: I was struck by the strange continuity in national security policy between the Bush administration and the Obama administration. Obama, as a candidate, had been eloquent and forceful in criticizing many aspects of the Bush administration's national security policies, from drone strikes to Guantanamo to surveillance by the National Security Agency—the NSA—to covert operations. Yet as president, it turned out that he made very, very few changes in these policies. So I thought it was useful to explain the reason for that.

Were you surprised by the continuity?

I was surprised by the extent of it. I knew fundamentally from my own experience that changing national policies is like trying to change the course of an aircraft carrier. These policies in many ways were set long ago, and the national security bureaucracy tends to favor the status quo. Still, I thought that a president like Obama would, with the political wind in his sails and with so much public and congressional support for what he was criticizing, be more successful in fulfilling his promises.

You use the phrase "double government," coined by Walter Bagehot in the 1860s. What did he mean by that?

Walter Bagehot was one of the founders of the Economist magazine. He developed the theory of "double government," which in a nutshell is this. He said Britain had developed two sets of institutions. First came "dignified" institutions, the monarchy and the House of Lords, which were for show and which the public believed ran the government. But in fact, he suggested, this was an illusion.

These dignified institutions generate legitimacy, but it was a second set of institutions, which he called Britain's "efficient" institutions, that actually ran the government behind the scenes. These institutions were the House of Commons, the Cabinet and the prime minister. This split allowed Britain to move quietly from a monarchy to what Bagehot called a "concealed republic."

The thesis of my book is that the United States has also drifted into a form of double government, and that we have our own set of "dignified" institutions—Congress, the presidency and the courts. But when it comes to national security policy, these entities have become largely for show. National security policy is now formulated primarily by a second group of officials, namely the several hundred individuals who manage the agencies of the military, intelligence and law enforcement bureaucracy responsible for protecting the nation's security.

What are some components of this arrangement?

The NSA, the FBI, the Pentagon and elements of the State Department, certainly; generally speaking, law enforcement, intelligence and the military entities of the government. It's a diverse group, an amorphous group, with no leader and no formal structure, that has come to dominate the formation of American national security policy to the point that Congress, the presidency and the courts all defer to it.

You call this group the "Trumanite network" in your book. What's the link to Harry Truman?

It was in Truman's administration that the National Security Act of 1947 was enacted. This established the CIA and the National Security Council and centralized the command of the U.S. military. It was during the Truman administration as well that the National Security Agency [NSA] was set up, in 1952, although that was a secret and didn't come to light for many years thereafter.

In contrast to the Trumanites you set the "Madisonians." How would you describe them?

The Madisonian institutions are the three constitutionally established branches of the federal government: Congress, the judiciary and the president. They are perceived by the public as the entities responsible for the formulation of national security policy, but that belief is largely mistaken.

The idea is driven by regular exceptions. You can always point to specific instances in which, say, the president personally ordered the killing of Osama bin Laden or Congress enacted the War Powers Resolution. But these are exceptions. The norm is that as a general matter, these three branches defer to the Trumanite network, and that's truer all the time.

So the trend is toward increased power on the Trumanite side of the ledger.

Correct.

If that's true, why has there not been a greater outcry from the public, the media—all the observers we have?

I think the principal reason is that even sophisticated students of government operate under a very serious misunderstanding. They believe that the political system is self-correcting. They believe the framers set up a system of government setting power against power, and ambition against ambition, and that an equilibrium would be reached, and that any abuse of power would be checked, and arbitrary power would be prevented.

That is correct as far as it goes, but the reality is that's only half the picture. The other half is that Madison and his colleagues believed that for equilibrium to occur, we would have an informed and engaged citizenry. Lacking that, the entire system corrupts, because individuals are elected to office who do not resist encroachments on the power of their branches of government, and the whole equilibrium breaks down.

What role, if any, have the media played?

The media have pretty much been enablers. Although there are a handful of investigative journalists who have done a heroic job of uncovering many of the abuses, they are the exception, for a number of reasons. Number one, the media are a business and have a bottom line. It takes a huge amount of money to fund an investigative journalist who goes about finding sources over a period of years. Very few newspapers or television concerns have those sorts of deep pockets.

Second, access for the press is everything. There is huge incentive to pull punches, and you don't get interviews with top-ranking officials at the NSA or CIA if you're going to offer hard-hitting questions. Look, for example, at the infamous 60 Minutes puff piece on the NSA, a really tragic example of how an otherwise respectable institution can sell its soul and act like an annex of the NSA in order to get some people it wants on the TV screen.

What is the role of terror in this environment?

The whole transfer of power from the Madisonian institutions to the Trumanite network has been fueled by a sense of emergency deriving from crisis, deriving from fear. It's fear of terrorism more than anything else that causes the American people to increasingly be willing to dispense with constitutional safeguards to ensure their safety.

Madison believed that government has two great objects. One object of a constitution is to enable the government to protect the people, specifically from external attacks. The other great object of a constitution is to protect the people from the government. The better able the government is to protect the people from external threats, the greater the threat posed by the government to the people.

You've been involved with the U.S. government for 40 years. How has your view of government changed?

Double government was certainly a factor in the 1970s, but it was challenged for the first time thanks to the activism stemming from the civil rights movement, Vietnam and Watergate. As a result, there were individuals in Congress—Democrats and Republicans like William Fulbright, Frank Church, Jacob Javits, Charles Mathias and many others—who were willing to stand up and insist upon adherence to constitutionally ordained principles. That led to a wave of activism and to the enactment of a number of pieces of reform legislation.

But there is no final victory in Washington. Those reforms have gradually been eaten away and turned aside. I think today we are in many ways right back where we were in the early 1970s. NSA surveillance is an example of that. The Church Committee uncovered something called Operation Shamrock, in which the NSA had assembled a watch list of antiwar and civil rights activists based upon domestic surveillance. Church warned at the time that NSA capabilities were so awesome that if they were ever turned inward on the American people, this nation would cross an abyss from which there is no return. The question is whether we have recently crossed that abyss.

To what degree are we still a functioning democracy? I'm sure you know that President Jimmy Carter told a German reporter last year that he thought we no longer qualified as a democracy because of our domestic surveillance.

We are clearly on the path to autocracy, and you can argue about how far we are down that path. But there's no question that if we continue on that path, America's constitutionally established institutions—Congress, the courts and the presidency—will ultimately end up like Britain's House of Lords and monarchy, namely as institutional museum pieces.

Bruce Morgan can be reached at bruce.morgan@tufts.ed

Here is how Christopher Bellavita in Homeland Security Watch summarize an interesting discussion at Cato think tank which I highly recommend to watch:

Why has American national security policy changed so little from the Bush administration to the Obama

That’s the question Michael J. Glennon asks in his book “National Security and Double Government.”

His answer: national security policy is determined largely by “the several hundred managers of the military, intelligence, diplomatic, and law enforcement agencies who are responsible for protecting the nation and who have come to operate largely immune from constitutional and electoral restraints.” The president, congress and the courts play largely a symbolic role in national security policy, Glennon claims.

You can read a Harvard National Security Journal article that outlines Glennon’s argument at this link: http://harvardnsj.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/01/Glennon-Final.pdf.  The paper is not an especially easy read, but I found it to be well researched and – for  me – persuasive.

His book adds more analysis to the argument, using (from Graham Allison’s Essence of Decision) the rational actor model, the government politics model, and the organizational behavior model. Glennon extends that framework by discussing culture, networks, and the myth of alternative competing hypotheses.  The book is richer, in my opinion.  But the core of Glennon’s position is in the paper.

This link takes you to a video of Glennon talking about his book at the Cato Institute: http://www.cato.org/events/national-security-double-government (the talk starts at the 5:20 mark).

From the Cato site:

In National Security and Double Government, Michael Glennon examines the continuity in U.S. national security policy from the Bush administration to the Obama administration. Glennon explains the lack of change by pointing to the enervation of America’s “Madisonian institutions,” namely, the Congress, the presidency, and the courts. In Glennon’s view, these institutions have been supplanted by a “Trumanite network” of bureaucrats who make up the permanent national security state. National security policymaking has been removed from public view and largely insulated from law and politics. Glennon warns that leaving security policy in the hands of the Trumanite network threatens Americans’ liberties and the republican form of government.

Some blurb reviews:

I’ve spoken to three people I consider to be members of the “shadow national security state.”   One person said Glennon’s argument is nothing new.  The second told me he’s got it exactly right.  The third said it’s even worse.

Professor Peter Dale Scott book and articles

If Michael Glennon conseed defeat but still has some hope, here we enter perfect Danter hell picture along the lines "Leave all hopes those who dare to enter"

Professor Peter Dale Scott book and article represent probably the most comprehensive coverage, especially his book. But the article in the Asia-Pacific journal represents fair summary of his views on the subject (The State, the Deep State, and the Wall Street Overworld (Updated March 13, 2014):

In the last decade it has become more and more obvious that we have in America today what the journalists Dana Priest and William Arkin have called

two governments: the one its citizens were familiar with, operated more or less in the open: the other a parallel top secret government whose parts had mushroomed in less than a decade into a gigantic, sprawling universe of its own, visible to only a carefully vetted cadre – and its entirety…visible only to God.1

And in 2013, particularly after the military return to power in Egypt, more and more authors referred to this second level as America’s “deep state.”2 Here for example is the Republican analyst Mike Lofgren:

There is the visible government situated around the Mall in Washington, and then there is another, more shadowy, more indefinable government that is not explained in Civics 101 or observable to tourists at the White House or the Capitol. The former is traditional Washington partisan politics: the tip of the iceberg that a public watching C-SPAN sees daily and which is theoretically controllable via elections. The subsurface part of the iceberg I shall call the Deep State, which operates according to its own compass heading regardless of who is formally in power.3

At the end of 2013 a New York Times Op-Ed noted this trend, and even offered a definition of the term that will work for the purposes of this essay:

DEEP STATE n. A hard-to-perceive level of government or super-control that exists regardless of elections and that may thwart popular movements or radical change. Some have said that Egypt is being manipulated by its deep state.4

The political activities of the deep state are the chief source and milieu of what I have elsewhere called “deep politics:” “all those political practices and arrangements, deliberate or not, which are usually repressed rather than acknowledged.”5

Others, like Tom Hayden, call the deep state a “state within the state,” and suggest it may be responsible for the failure of the Obama administration to follow the policy guidelines of the president’s speeches:

We have seen evidence of a "state within the state" before, going back as far as the CIA's operations against Cuba. In Obama's time, the president correctly named the 2009 coup in Honduras a "coup", and then seemed powerless to prevent it.6

This development of a two-level or dual state has been paralleled by two other dualities: the increasing resolution of American society into two classes – the “one percent” and the “ninety-nine percent” – and the bifurcation of the U.S. economy into two aspects: the domestic, still subject to some governmental regulation and taxation, and the international, relatively free from governmental controls.7 All three developments have affected and intensified each other – particularly since the Reagan Revolution of 1980, which saw American inequality of wealth cease to diminish and begin to increase.8 Thus for example we shall see how Wall Street – the incarnation of the “one percent” – played a significant role in increasing the deep state after World War Two, and how three decades later the deep state played a significant role in realigning America for the Reagan Revolution.

In earlier books I have given versions of this America-centered account of America’s shift into empire and a deep state. But another factor to be mentioned is the shift of global history towards an increasingly global society dominated by a few emergent superpowers. This trend was accelerated after the Industrial Revolution by new technologies of transport, from the railroad in the 19th century to the jet plane and space travel in the 20th.9

In the fallout from this rearrangement we must include two world wars, as a result of which Britain ceased to act as the dominant superpower it had been since Napoleon. Not surprisingly, the Soviet Union and the United States subsequently competed in a Cold War to fill the gap. It  was not however predetermined that the Cold War would be as thuggish and covertly violent as for decades it continued to be. For that we should look to more contingent causes on both sides of the Iron Curtain – starting with the character of Stalin and his party but also including the partly responsive development of the American deep state.

The Deep State, The Shadow Government and the Wall Street Overworld

The “deep state” was defined by the UK newsletter On Religion as “the embedded anti-democratic power structures within a government, something very few democracies can claim to be free from.”10 The term originated in Turkey in 1996, to refer to U.S.-backed elements, primarily in the intelligence services and military, who had repeatedly used violence to interfere with and realign Turkey’s democratic political process. Sometimes the definition is restricted to elements within the government (or “a state-within-the state”), but more often in Turkey the term is expanded, for historical reasons, to include “members of the Turkish underworld.”11 In this essay I shall use “deep state” in the larger sense, to include both the second level of secret government inside Washington and those outsiders powerful enough, in either the underworld or overworld, to give it direction. In short I shall equate the term “deep state” with what in 1993 I termed a “deep political system:” “ one which habitually resorts to decision-making and enforcement procedures outside as well as inside those publicly sanctioned by law and society.”12

Like myself, Lofgren suggests an ambiguous symbiosis between two aspects of the American deep state:

1)  the Beltway agencies of the shadow government, like the CIA and NSA, which have been instituted by the public state and now overshadow it, and

2)  the much older power of Wall Street, referring to the powerful banks and law firms located there.

In his words,

It is not too much to say that Wall Street may be the ultimate owner of the Deep State and its strategies, if for no other reason than that it has the money to reward government operatives with a second career that is lucrative beyond the dreams of avarice - certainly beyond the dreams of a salaried government employee.13

I shall argue that in the 1950s Wall Street was a dominating complex. It included not just banks and oil firms but also the oil majors whose cartel arrangements were successfully defended against the U.S. Government by the Wall Street law firm Sullivan and Cromwell, home to the Dulles brothers. This larger complex is what I mean by the Wall Street overworld.

The Long History of the Wall Street Overworld

Lofgren’s inclusion of Wall Street is in keeping with Franklin Roosevelt’s observation in 1933 to his friend Col. E.M. House that “The real truth … is, as you and I know, that a financial element in the larger centers has owned the Government ever since the days of Andrew Jackson.”14

FDR’s insight is well illustrated by the efficiency with which a group of Wall Street bankers (including Nelson Rockefeller’s grandfather Nelson Aldrich and Paul Warburg) were able in a highly secret meeting in 1910 to establish the Federal Reserve System – a system which in effect reserved oversight of the nation’s currency supply and of all America’s banks in the not impartial hands of its largest.15 The political clout of the quasi-governmental Federal Reserve Board (where the federal Treasury is represented but does not dominate) was clearly demonstrated in 2008, when Fed leadership secured instant support from the successive administrations of a Texan Republican president, followed by a Midwest Democratic one, for public money to rescue the reckless management of Wall Street banks: banks Too Big To Fail, and of course far Too Big To Jail, but not Too Big To Bail.16

Wall Street and the Launching of the CIA

Top-level Treasury officials, CIA officers, and Wall Street bankers and lawyers think alike because of the “revolving door” by which they pass easily from private to public service and back. In 1946 General Vandenberg, as Director of Central Intelligence (DCI), recruited Allen Dulles, then a Republican lawyer at Sullivan and Cromwell in New York, "to draft proposals for the shape and organization of what was to become the Central Intelligence Agency in 1947." Dulles promptly formed an advisory group of six men, all but one of whom were Wall Street investment bankers or lawyers.17 Dulles and two of the six (William H. Jackson and Frank Wisner) later joined the agency, where Dulles proceeded to orchestrate policies, such as the overthrow of the Arbenz regime in Guatemala, that he had previously discussed in New York at the Council on Foreign Relations.18

There seems to be little difference in Allen Dulles’s influence whether he was a Wall Street lawyer or a CIA director. Although he did not formally join the CIA until November 1950, he was in Berlin before the start of the 1948 Berlin Blockade, “supervising the unleashing of anti-Soviet propaganda across Europe.”19 In the early summer of 1948 he set up the American Committee for a United Europe (ACUE), in support of what became by the early 1950s “the largest CIA operation in Western Europe.”20

The Deep State and Funds for CIA Covert Operations

Wall Street was also the inspiration for what eventually became the CIA’s first covert operation: the use of “over $10 million in captured Axis funds to influence the [Italian] election [of 1948].”21 (The fundraising had begun at the wealthy Brook Club in New York; but Allen Dulles, still a Wall Street lawyer, persuaded Washington, which at first had preferred a private funding campaign, to authorize the operation through the National Security Council and the CIA.)22

Dulles’s friend Frank Wisner then left Wall Street to oversee an enlarged covert operations program through the newly created Office of Policy Co-ordination (OPC). Dulles, still a lawyer, campaigned successfully to reconstruct Western Europe through what became known as the Marshall Plan.23 Together with George Kennan and James Forrestal, Dulles also “helped devise a secret codicil [to the Marshall Plan] that gave the CIA the capability to conduct political warfare. It let the agency skim millions of dollars from the plan.”24

This created one of the earlier occasions when the CIA, directly or indirectly, recruited local assets involved in drug trafficking. AFL member Irving Brown, the assistant of AFL official Jay Lovestone (a CIA asset), was implicated in drug smuggling activities in Europe, at the same time that he used funds diverted from the Marshall Plan to establish

a "compatible left" labor union in Marseilles with Pierre Ferri-Pisani. On behalf of Brown and the CIA, Ferri-Pisani (a drug smuggler connected with Marseilles crime lord Antoine Guerini), hired goons to shellack striking Communist dock workers.25

An analogous funding source for the CIA developed in the Far East: the so-called

"M-Fund," a secret fund of money of enormous size that has existed in Japan [in 1991] for more than forty years. The Fund was established by the United States in the immediate postwar era for essentially the same reasons that later gave rise to the Marshall Plan of assistance by the U.S. to Western Europe, including the Federal Republic of Germany….. The M-Fund was used not only for the building of a democratic political system in Japan but, in addition, for all of the purposes for which Marshall Plan funds were used in Europe.26

For at least two decades the CIA lavishly subsidized right-wing parties in countries including Japan and Indonesia, possibly still using captured Axis funds.27 (One frequently encounters the claim that the source of the M-fund was gold looted by Japan during World War Two (“Yamashita’s gold”).28

As a general rule the CIA, rather than assimilating these funds into its own budget, appears to have left them off the books in the hands of cooperative allied powers – ranging from other U.S. agencies like the Economic Cooperation Administration (ECA. set up in 1948 to administer the Marshall Plan) to oil companies to powerful drug kingpins.29

The CIA never abandoned its dependency on funds from outside its official budget to conduct its clandestine operations. In Southeast Asia, in particular, its proprietary firm Sea Supply Inc., supplied an infrastructure for a drug traffic supporting a CIA-led paramilitary force, PARU.30 The CIA appears also to have acted in coordination with slush funds from various U.S. government contracts, ranging from the Howard Hughes organization to (as we shall see) the foreign arms sales of U.S. defense corporations like Lockheed and Northrop.31

Lockheed Payoffs and CIA Clients: the Netherlands, Japan, Italy, Indonesia, and Saudi Arabia

 

 

Kodama Yoshio, war criminal, drug trafficker, and purveyor of deep state US funds to Japanese politicians

Through the 1950s payouts from the M-fund were administered by Kodama Yoshio, “probably the CIA's chief asset in Japan;” while ”All accounts say that after the end of the occupation, the fund's American managers came from the CIA.”32  Kodama also received and distributed millions of funds from Lockheed to secure military contracts – an operation the CIA knew about but has never admitted involvement in.33 Lockheed’s system of payoffs was world-wide; and one sees CIA involvement with it in at least four other countries: the Netherlands, Italy, Indonesia and Saudi Arabia. (Lockheed, the builder of the U-2, was a major CIA-cleared contractor.)34

The beneficiary in the Netherlands was Prince Bernhard, a close friend of CIA directors Walter Bedell Smith and Allen Dulles, and the organizer of the Bilderberg Group.35 In the case of Italy, payments were handled through a contact (“Antelope Cobbler”) who turned out to be whoever was the Italian Prime Minister of the moment (always from one of the parties subsidized earlier by the CIA).36

In the revealing instance of Indonesia, Lockheed payments were shifted in May 1965, over the legal objections of Lockheed's counsel, to a new contract with a  company set up by the firm's long-time local agent or middleman, August Munir Dasaad.86 This was just six months after a secret U.S. decision to have the CIA covertly assist

“individuals and organizations prepared to take obstructive action against the PKI [Indonesian Communist Party].” Over the longer term this meant identifying and keeping tabs on “anti-regime elements” and other potential leaders of a post-Sukarno regime.37

Although Dasaad had been a long-time supporter of Sukarno, by May 1965 he was already building connections with Sukarno’s eventual successor, Gen. Suharto, via a family relative, General Alamsjah, who knew Suharto and was the beneficiary of the new Lockheed account.38 After Suharto replaced Sukarno, Alamsjah, who controlled certain considerable funds, at once made funds available to Suharto, earning him the gratitude of the new President.39

In July 1965, furthermore, at the alleged nadir of U.S.-Indonesian aid relations, Rockwell-Standard had a contractual agreement to deliver two hundred light aircraft (Aero-Commanders) to the Indonesian Army (not the Air Force) in the next two months. Once again the commission agent on the deal, Bob Hasan or Hassan, was a political associate (and eventual business partner) of Suharto. More specifically, Suharto and Bob Hasan established two shipping companies to be operated by the Central Java army division, Diponegoro. This division, as has long been noticed, supplied the bulk of the personnel on both sides of the Gestapu coup drama in September 1965 -- both those staging the coup attempt, and those putting it down.40

While this was happening, Stanvac (a joint venture of the Standard companies known later as Exxon and Mobil) increased payments to the army's oil company, Permina, headed by an eventual political ally of Suharto, General Ibnu Sutowo. Alamsjah is said to have been allied with Ibnu Sutowo in plotting against Sukarno, along with a well-connected Japanese oilman, Nishijima Shigetada.41 After Suharto's overthrow of Sukarno, Fortune wrote that "Sutowo's still small company played a key part in bankrolling those crucial operations, and the army has never forgotten it."42

We shall deal later with the special case of Lockheed kickbacks to Saudi Arabia, which were far greater than those to Japan. It is important to note, however, the linkage between Middle East oil and arms sales: as U.S. imports of Middle East oil increased, the pressure on the U.S. balance of payments was offset by increased U.S. arms sales to the region. “In the period 1963-1974, arms sales to the Middle East went from 10 per cent of global arms imports to 36 per cent, half of which was supplied by the United States.”43

Iran in 1953: How an Oil Cartel Operation Became a Job for the CIA

The international lawyers of Wall Street did not hide from each other their shared belief that they understood better than Washington the requirements for running the world. As John Foster Dulles wrote in the 1930s to a British colleague,

The word “cartel” has here assumed the stigma of a bogeyman which the politicians are constantly attacking.  The fact of the matter is that most of these politicians are highly insular and nationalistic and because the political organization of the world has under such influence been so backward, business people who have had to cope realistically with international problems have had to find ways for getting through and around stupid political barriers.44

This same mentality also explains why Allen Dulles as an OSS officer in 1945 simply evaded orders from Washington forbidding him to negotiate with SS General Karl Wolff about a conditional surrender of German forces in Italy – an important breach of Roosevelt’s agreement with Stalin at Yalta for unconditional surrender, a breach that is regarded by many as helping lead to the Cold War.45 And it explains why Allen, as CIA Director in 1957, dealt summarily with Eisenhower’s reluctance to authorize more than occasional U-2 overflights of the USSR, by secretly approving a plan with Britain’s MI-6 whereby U-2 flights could be authorized instead by the UK Prime Minister Macmillan.46

This mentality exhibited itself in 1952, when Truman’s Justice Department sought to break up the cartel agreements whereby Standard Oil of New Jersey (now Exxon) and four other oil majors controlled global oil distribution. (The other four were Standard Oil Company of New York, Standard Oil of California or Socony, Gulf Oil, and Texaco; together with Royal Dutch Shell and Anglo-Iranian, they comprised the so-called Seven Sisters of the cartel.) Faced with a government order to hand over relevant documents, Exxon’s lawyer Arthur Dean at Sullivan and Cromwell, where Foster was senior partner, refused: “If it were not for the question of national security, we would be perfectly willing to face either a criminal or a civil suit. But this is the kind of information the Kremlin would love to get its hands on.”47

 

 

Wall Street, the former headquarters of both Sullivan and Cromwell and the J. Henry Schroder Banking Corporation

At this time the oil cartel was working closely with the British Anglo-Iranian Oil Company (AIOC, later BP) to prevent AIOC’s nationalization by Iran’s Premier Mossadeq, by instituting, in May 1951, a successful boycott of Iranian oil exports.

In May 1951 the AIOC secured the backing of the other oil majors, who had every interest in discouraging nationalisation.... None of the large companies would touch Iranian oil; despite one or two picturesque episodes the boycott held.48

As a result Iranian oil production fell from 241 million barrels in 1950 to 10.6 million barrels in 1952.

This was accomplished by denying Iran the ability to export its crude oil. At that time, the Seven Sisters controlled almost 99% of the crude oil tankers in the world for such export, and even more importantly, the markets to which it was going.49

But Truman declined, despite a direct personal appeal from Churchill, to have the CIA participate in efforts to overthrow Mossadeq, and instead dispatched Averell Harriman to Tehran in a failed effort to negotiate a peaceful resolution of Mossadeq’s differences with London.50

 

 

 

Allen and John Foster Dulles, pillars of both the state and the deep state

All this changed with the election of Eisenhower in November 1952, followed by the appointment of the Dulles brothers to be Secretary of State and head of CIA. The Justice Department’s criminal complaint against the oil cartel was swiftly replaced by a civil suit, from which the oil cartel eventually emerged unscathed.51

Eisenhower, an open friend of the oil industry…changed the charges from criminal to civil and transferred responsibility of the case from the Department of Justice to the Department of State – the first time in history that an antitrust case was handed to State for prosecution. Seeing as how the Secretary of State was John Foster Dulles and the defense counsel for the oil cartel was Dulles’ former law firm (Sullivan and Cromwell), the case was soon as good as dead.52

Thereafter

Cooperative control of the world market by the major oil companies remained in effect, with varying degrees of success, until the oil embargo of 1973-74. That the cooperation was more than tacit can be seen by the fact that antitrust regulations were specifically set aside a number of times during the 1950-1973 period, allowing the major companies to negotiate as a group with various Mideastern countries, and after its inception [in 1960], with the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries or OPEC.53

Also in November 1952 CIA officials began planning to involve CIA in the efforts of MI6 and the oil companies in Iran54 -- although its notorious Operation TP/AJAX to overthrow Mossadeq was not finally approved by Eisenhower until July 22, 1953.55

The events of 1953 strengthened the role of the oil cartel as a structural component of the American deep state, drawing on its powerful connections to both Wall Street and the CIA.56  (Another such component was the Arabian-American Oil Company or ARAMCO in Saudi Arabia, which increased oil production in 1951-53 to offset the loss of oil from Iran. Until it was fully nationalized in 1980, ARAMCO maintained undercover CIA personnel like William Eddy among its top advisors.)57 The five American oil majors in particular were also strengthened by the success of AJAX, as Anglo-Iranian (renamed BP) was henceforth forced to share 40 percent of the oil from its Iran refinery with them.

Nearly all recent accounts of Mossadeq’s overthrow treat it as a covert intelligence operation, with the oil cartel (when mentioned at all) playing a subservient role. However the chronology, and above all the belated approval from Eisenhower, suggest that it was CIA that came belatedly in 1953 to assist an earlier oil cartel operation, rather than vice versa. In terms of the deep state, the oil cartel or deep state initiated in 1951 a process that the American public state only authorized two years later. Yet the inevitable bias in academic or archival historiography, working only with those primary sources that are publicly available, is to think of the Mossadeq tragedy as simply a “CIA coup.”

The CIA, Booz Allen Hamilton, and the Wall Street Overworld

The “revolving door” also circulates top-level intelligence officials and the chiefs of the cleared contractors referred to by Mike Lofgren as part of the deep state. Tim Shorrock revealed in 2007 that “about 70 percent of the estimated $60 billion the government spends every year on…intelligence” is outsourced to private intelligence contractors like Booz, Allen & Hamilton (now Booz Allen Hamilton) and SAIC.58 For example Mike McConnell “went from being head of the National Security Agency under Bush 41 and Clinton directly to Booz Allen, one of the nation’s largest private intelligence contractors, then became Bush’s Director of National Intelligence (DNI), then went back to Booz Allen, where he is now Executive Vice President.” Intelligence officers in government write the non-competitive contracts for the private corporations that they may have worked for and may work for again.59 And over the years the “revolving door” has also exchanged personnel between Booz Allen and the international oil companies served by the firm.

The original firm of Booz, Allen, & Hamilton split in 2008 into Booz Allen Hamilton, focused on USG business, and Booz & Company in New York, assuming the old company’s commercial and international portfolio. Booz Allen Hamilton is majority owned by the private equity firm the Carlyle Group, noted for its association with political figures like both presidents Bush.60

 

 

 

Booz Allen Hamilton Headquarters

Lofgren points to the deep state importance of Booz Allen Hamilton, 99 percent of whose business dependent on the U.S. government.61 Booz Allen has been linked in the media to NSA ever since its employee Edward Snowden decamped with NSA records. But Booz Allen, one of the oldest and largest of the “cleared contractors,” has been intertwined with the CIA’s covert operations since Allen Dulles became CIA Director in 1953.62 In the same year, Booz Allen began “to take on several overseas assignments…: a land-registration system in the Philippines, a restructuring of Egypt’s customs operations and textile industries, and work for Iran’s national oil company.”63 All three assignments overlapped with CIA covert ops in 1953, including the Philippine land distribution program which Edward Lansdale promoted in order to fight a Huk insurrection, and the CIA’s operation TP/AJAX (with Britain’s MI6) to rescue the Anglo-Iranian oil company (later BP).64

 

 

Miles Copeland, Jr., ex-CIA, ex-Booz Allen & Hamilton, ex-Khashoggi’s private CIA

But the most important CIA-Booz Allen cooperation may have been in Egypt. In March 1953 Miles Copeland, having resigned from the CIA to join Booz-Allen, “returned to Cairo under what was, for all practical purposes, a joint CIA-BA&H mission.”65 In addition to offering management advice to the Egyptian government in general, and to a private textile mill, Miles also gave Nasser advice on establishing his intelligence service (the Mukhabarat), and “soon became his closest Western advisor” (as well as his top channel to the USG, more important than either the local US ambassador or CIA chief)66

Copeland’s role with Nasser did not make him a shaper of U.S. policy; his pro-Nasser views were largely subordinated to the pro-British anti-Nasserism of the Dulles brothers. But they did establish a bond between Copeland and the Eisenhower White House. By 1967, when Nixon was preparing to run for president, Copeland had taken a leave of absence from Booz Allen to become a prestigious and well-paid consultant for oil companies.

The CIA, Miles Copeland, and Adnan Khashoggi

In 1966 Copeland, while technically on leave from Booz Allen, made close contact with Adnan Khashoggi, a young Arab who was in the course of becoming both a “principal foreign agent” of the U.S. and also extremely wealthy on the commissions he earned from Lockheed and other military firms on arms sales to Saudi Arabia.67 (“To give some sense of the size of the business, the company acknowledged in the mid-1970s that it had provided $106 million in commissions to Khashoggi between 1970 and 1975, more than ten times the level of payments made to the next most important connection, Yoshi [sic] Kodama of Japan.”68

 

 

 

Adnan Khashoggi, shadowy backer of politicians (Time, Jan. 19, 1987)

By Copeland’s own account in 1989, this encounter with Khashoggi “put the two of us on a ‘Miles-and-Adnan’ basis that has lasted for more than twenty years of business, parties, and a very special kind of political action.”69 Copeland adds that

Adnan and I, separately had been called on by our respective friends in Langley [i.e., CIA] to… have an official [sic], off-the-record exchange of ideas on the emerging crisis in the Middle East, and come up with suggestions that the tame bureaucrats would like to have made but couldn’t.70

Copeland almost immediately flew to Cairo and immersed himself in a series of high-level but ultimately unsuccessful efforts to forestall what soon became the 1967 Six Day Egyptian-Israeli Six Day War. By his account, his mission, though unsuccessful, gave a “tremendous boost” to his reputation, enabling him “to accelerate the attempt I had already started to establish a ‘private CIA’ by use of confidential arrangements with politically astute members of the client companies.”71

Copeland’s self-promoting claims are controversial, and a number of establishment writers have described his books as “unreliable.”72 But eyewitness Larry Kolb corroborates that Copeland was close to Khashoggi, and that the two of them

had written a white paper… proposing that… rich countries, including not only the United States but also the Arab oil states, should establish a “Marshall Plan” for all the needy countries of the Middle East, including Israel.

Rewritten with Kolb’s assistance after consultation with the Reagan White House, the plan would be backed by a “Mideast Peace Fund” to which “Adnan was pledging a hundred million dollars of his own money.”73

The proposal failed, partly because of the Middle East’s resistance to negotiated solutions, but also partly because by the 1980s Khashoggi was no longer as rich and influential as he had once been. His function as an agent of influence in the Middle East and elsewhere had been sharply limited after the United States, by the Corrupt Federal Practices Act of 1978, outlawed direct payments by US corporations to foreign individuals. Henceforward the function of bestowing money and sexual favors on client politicians passed primarily from Khashoggi to another CIA connection, the Bank of Credit and Commerce International (BCCI).74 A major shareholder in BCCI was Saudi intelligence chief Kamal Adham, Khashoggi’s friend and business partner and (according to the Senate BCCI Report) “the CIA's former principal contact in the Arab Middle East.”75

What the story of the failed “Mideast Peace Fund” reveals is first, that Khashoggi (like BCCI after him) was of interest to Washington because of his ability to negotiate with both Israel and Arab countries; and second, that Copeland and what Copeland called his “private CIA,”76 was in a commanding position as lead adviser to Khashoggi, while still on unpaid leave from Booz Allen Hamilton.

Khashoggi, the CIA’s Asset Edward K. Moss, and Political Corruption

A powerful connection was formed by combining Copeland’s political contacts with Khashoggi’s millions. Copeland may have been responsible for Khashoggi’s inspired choice of the under-recognized Edward K. Moss, another man with CIA connections, as his p.r. agent in Washington.77

Back in November 1962, the CIA, as part of its planning to get rid of Castro, decided  to use Moss for the Political Action Group of the CIA’s Covert Action (CA) staff.78 This was more than a year after the FBI had advised the CIA that Moss’s mistress Julia Cellini and her brother Dino Cellini were alleged to be procurers, while “the Cellini brothers have long been associated with the narcotics and white slavery rackets in Cuba.”79

This FBI report suggests an important shared interest between Moss and Khashoggi: sexual corruption. Just as his uncle Yussuf Yassin had been a procurer of women for King Abdul-Aziz, so Khashoggi himself was said to have “used sex to win over U.S. executives.” The bill for the madam who supplied girls en masse to his yacht in the Mediterranean ran to hundreds of thousands of dollars.80 Khashoggi made a practice of supplying those he wished to influence with dollars as well as sex.

 

 

 

Khashoggi’s Superyacht Kingdom 5KR, now owned by Prince Al-Waleed bin Talal

The CIA of course was forbidden to use sex and money in this way in the United States, or to make in the United States the payments to right-wing politicians that characterized its behavior in the rest of the world. But no such prohibition applied to Khashoggi. According to Anthony Summers,

Khashoggi had courted Nixon in 1967 by putting a plane at his disposal to tour the Middle East after the Six-Day War. Soon afterward, using a proxy, he opened an account at Rebozo’s [Bebe Rebozo, Nixon’s close confidante] in Florida. He did so, he explained to Watergate prosecutors, hoping to “curry favor with Rebozo,” to get an entrée to the man who might become president, and to pursue business deals.81

Khashoggi in effect served as a “cutout,” or representative, in a number of operations forbidden to the CIA and the companies he worked with. Lockheed, for one, was conspicuously absent from the list of military contractors who contributed illicitly to Nixon’s 1972 election campaign. But there was no law prohibiting their official representative, Khashoggi, from cycling $200 million through the bank of Nixon’s friend Bebe Rebozo.82

(Pierre Salinger heard from Khashoggi that in 1972 he had donated $1 million to Nixon, corroborating the often-heard claim that Khashoggi had brought it in a briefcase to Nixon’s western White House in San Clemente, and then “forgotten” to take it away.)83

Khashoggi of course did not introduce such corruption to American politics; he merely joined a milieu where defense companies had used money and girls for years to win defense contracts in Washington and Las Vegas.84 Prominent in this practice was Howard Hughes, whom Khashoggi soon joined in international investments. (After a Senate investigator on Khashoggi’s trail registered at the Hughes-owned Sands Hotel in Las Vegas, a blonde came unexpectedly to his hotel room, and said, “I’m here for your pleasure.”)85

But Khashoggi’s corruption channels and targets overlapped with those of others with CIA connections. In 1972 it was alleged that funds from the Paradise Island casino in the Bahamas were being secretly carried to Nixon and his friend Bebe Rebozo, by a casino employee. This was Seymour (Sy) Alter, who was both “a friend of Nixon and Rebozo since 1962” and also an associate of Edward Moss’s brother-in-law Eddie Cellini, the casino manager at Paradise Island. 86 The funds came from the Paradise Island Bridge Company, a company partly owned by an officer of Benguet International, a firm represented in America by Paul Helliwell.87 It is likely that Nixon himself had a hidden interest in the Bridge Company, which might explain the revelation through Operation Tradewinds that a “Richard M. Nixon” (not otherwise identified) had an account at Helliwell’s Castle Bank.88

Three facts point to a deep state interest in what might otherwise seem a matter of personal corruption. The first is that Paul Helliwell had set up two companies for the CIA  -- CAT Inc. (Later Air America) and SEA Supply Inc. in Bangkok -- that became the infrastructure of the CIA’s covert operations with drug-trafficking armies in Southeast Asia.89 The second is that Paul Helliwell’s banking partner, E.P. Barry, had been the postwar head of OSS Counterintelligence (X-2) in Vienna, which oversaw the recovery of SS gold in Operation Safehaven.90 The third is that for over four decades persons from Booz Allen Hamilton have been among the very small group owning the profitable Paradise Island Bridge Company. (A recent partner in the Paradise Island Bridge Company is Booz Allen Senior Vice-President Robert Riegle.)91

 

 

 

The Safari Club today, now the Fairmont Mount Kenya Safari Club

Moss, Khashoggi, the Safari Club, and the International Overworld

The power exerted by Khashoggi and Moss was not limited to Khashoggi’s access to funds and women. By the 1970s, Moss was chairman of the elite Safari Club in Kenya, where he invited Khashoggi in as majority owner.92 The exclusive property became the venue for an alliance between intelligence agencies that wished to compensate for the CIA’s retrenchment in the wake of President Carter’s election and Senator Church’s post-Watergate reforms.93

As former Saudi intelligence chief Prince Turki bin Faisal once told Georgetown University alumni,

In 1976, after the Watergate matters took place here, your intelligence community was literally tied up by Congress. It could not do anything. It could not send spies, it could not write reports, and it could not pay money. In order to compensate for that, a group of countries got together in the hope of fighting Communism and established what was called the Safari Club. The Safari Club included France, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Morocco, and Iran.94

Prince Turki’s candid remarks– “your intelligence community was literally tied up by Congress. …. In order to compensate for that, a group of countries got together … and established what was called the Safari Club.” – made it clear that the Safari Club, operating at the level of the deep state, was expressly created to overcome restraints established by political decisions of the public state in Washington.

Obviously the property owned by Khashoggi and Moss in Kenya should not be confused with the intelligence operation of the same name. But it would be wrong also to make a radical separation between the two: the two men Khashoggi and Moss would appear to be part of this supranational intelligence milieu.

Specifically Khashoggi’s activities of corruption by sex and money, after they too were somewhat curtailed by Senator Church’s post-Watergate reforms, appear to have been taken up by the Bank of Credit and Commerce International (BCCI), a bank where Khashoggi’s friend and business partner Kamal Adham, the Saudi intelligence chief and Safari Club member, was a part-owner.95

 

 

 

BCCI on the cover of Time, July 6, 1991.

The Deep State, the Safari Club, and BCCI

The usual account of this super-agency’s origin is that it was

the brainchild of Count Alexandre de Marenches, the debonair and mustachioed chief of France’s CIA. The SDECE (Service de Documentation Extérieure et de Contre-Espionnage)…. Worried by Soviet and Cuban advances in postcolonial Africa, and by America’s post-Watergate paralysis in the field of undercover activity, the swashbuckling Marenches had come to Turki’s father, King Faisal, with a proposition…. [By 1979] Somali president Siad Barre had been bribed out of Soviet embrace by $75 million worth of Egyptian arms (paid for… by Saudi Arabia)….96

However the well-informed Mahmood Mamdani sees it as the product of Washington’s search for new proxies after the debacle of the U.S.- South African debacle in Angola in the mid-1970s:

Apartheid South Africa was confirmed to be a political liability. The recognition only aggravated the search for proxies. Its first success was a regional alliance called the Safari Club, put together with the blessing of Henry Kissinger.97

As Kissinger was still Secretary of State when the Safari Club was founded, this would suggest that it was an authorized, not a deep state creation. So would the Club’s early successes that Mamdani cites, especially when

it helped bring about the historic rapprochement between two strategic American Allies, Egypt and Israel, laying the ground for Anwar al-Sadat’s pathbreaking November 1977 visit to Jerusalem. The suggestion for the meeting was first made in a letter from Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin to President Sadat, carried by the Moroccan representative in the club.98

But after Carter was elected, according to Trento, the Safari Club allied itself with Richard Helms and Theodore Shackley against the restrained intelligence policies of Jimmy Carter. In Trento’s account, the dismissal by William Colby in 1974 of CIA counterintelligence chief James Angleton,

combined with Watergate, is what prompted the Safari Club to start working with [former DCI Richard] Helms [then U.S. Ambassador to Iran] and his most trusted operatives outside of Congressional and even Agency purview. James Angleton said before his death that “Colby destroyed counterintelligence. But because Colby was seen by Shackley and Helms as having betrayed the CIA to Congress, they simply began working with outsiders like Adham and Saudi Arabia. The traditional CIA answering to the president was an empty vessel having little more than technical capability.”99

Joseph Trento adds that “The Safari Club needed a network of banks to finance its intelligence operations,… With the official blessing of George Bush as the head of the CIA, Adham transformed…  the Bank of Credit and Commerce International (BCCI), into a worldwide money-laundering machine.”100

Trento claims also that the Safari Club then was able to work with some of the controversial CIA operators who were then forced out of the CIA by Turner, and that this was coordinated by perhaps the most controversial of them all: Theodore Shackley.

Shackley, who still had ambitions to become DCI, believed that without his many sources and operatives like [Edwin] Wilson, the Safari Club—operating with [former DCI Richard] Helms in charge in Tehran—would be ineffective. …  Unless Shackley took direct action to complete the privatization of intelligence operations soon, the Safari Club would not have a conduit to [CIA] resources. The solution: create a totally private intelligence network using CIA assets until President Carter could be replaced.101

Kevin Phillips has suggested that Bush on leaving the CIA had dealings with the bank most closely allied with Safari Club operations: the Bank of Credit and Commerce International (BCCI). In Phillips’ words,

After leaving the CIA in January 1977, Bush became chairman of the executive committee of First International Bancshares and its British subsidiary, where, according to journalists Peter Truell and Larry Gurwin in their 1992 book ‘False Profits’ [p. 345], Bush ‘traveled on the bank’s behalf and sometimes marketed to international banks in London, including several Middle Eastern institutions.’102

It is clear moreover that BCCI operations, like Khashoggi’s before them, were marked by the ability to deal behind the scenes with both the Arab countries and also Israel.103

Khashoggi, Copeland, BCCI, and the Iran-Contra Scandal

Joseph Trento adds that through the London branch of this bank, which Bush chaired, “Adham’s petrodollars and BCCI money flowed for a variety of intelligence operations”104 It is clear moreover that BCCI operations, like Khashoggi’s before them, were marked by the ability to deal behind the scenes with both the Arab countries and also Israel.105

Khashoggi and BCCI together, moreover, with the assistance of Miles Copeland, initiated what we remember as the Iran-Contra arms scandal. According to Theodore Draper, in his exhaustive study of Iran-Contra,

A chance encounter between Adnan Khashoggi and Manucher Ghorbanifar effectively set the Iran affair in motion. As Khashoggi told the story to the French writer Michel Clerc, the meeting took place in Hamburg in April 1985.

Draper notes furthermore that the deal soon involved three Israelis, Yaacov Nimrodi, Adolph (Al) Schwimmer, and David Kimche, for whom “Khashoggi was no newcomer.”Together with Israeli Defense Minister Sharon, the three had “met with President Nimeiri of the Sudan [in May 1982] at a safari resort in Kenya owned by Khashoggi”—i.e., the Safari Club.106 But Khashoggi’s connection to Schwimmer went even further back: the two men had been introduced in Las Vegas by Schwimmer’s partner in gun-running to the infant state of Israel, Hank Greenspun.107

Draper’s account of the Hamburg meeting fails however to note that Miles Copeland and his assistant Larry Kolb were (according to their own accounts) also present. Copeland writes that he and Khashoggi met with the Iranian arms dealer Manucher Ghorbanifar, after which Copeland wrote up an Iran arms sales proposal. Copeland claims this had nothing to do with either Contras or hostages, but was intended as a “second paper to McFarlane…as an appendix to the ‘Marshall Plan’ paper. So far as [Khashoggi} was personally concerned, he was attracted to [Ghorbanifar’s] proposal only to the extent to which it could be tied into plans for over all Middle Eastern peace.”108

Copeland’s aide Larry Kolb agrees that he, Copeland, Khashoggi, and Schwimmer were all present with Ghorbanifar and others at the 1985 Hamburg meeting. There, according to Kolb, Khashoggi

said that in recent meetings in Washington, he’d been told that if the American government was going to participate in this venture…it would have to be structured in such a way that there would be no trail of arms… leading from the United States to Iran. So, Adnan said… it had been arranged that the actual goods could come from the Israeli government… and be transported directly from Israel to Iran….

But arms trading and spare parts and hostages took up very little of the conversation that day. Most of the time was spent thinking, and talking,… about a strategic opening between the United States and Iran – as a means of blunting Soviet attempts to dominate the world’s third largest oil producer.109

Later he and Copeland wrote up the meeting in a paper “titled ‘Adnan Khashoggi’s Views on the Possibilities of a Strategic Initiative Between the United States and Iran’,” that “wasn’t about an arms deal.” They gave it to Khashoggi to present to McFarlane.

We had no idea then that… months later a wild-ass Marine colonel would force the whole thing out into the open by stealing Adnan [Khashoggi]’s fifteen-million-dollar bridge loan which funded the sale and sending the money to the Nicaraguan Contra rebels.110

The Congressional investigation of the Iran-Contra Affair agrees with Kolb that “Khashoggi suggested that Ghorbanifar try to develop access to the United States and its arms through Israel.”111 And the Senate investigation of BCCI also reports:

Both Saudi businessman Adnan Khashoggi and Iranian arms merchant Manucher Ghorbanifar were central agents of the United States in selling arms to Iran in the Iran/Contra affair. According to the official chronologies of the Iran/Contra committees, Khashoggi acted as the middleman for five Iranian arms deals for the United States, financing a number of them through BCCI …. According to his own and other published accounts, he provided some $30 million in loans altogether…. Both Khashoggi and Ghorbanifar banked at BCCI's offices in Monte Carlo, and for both, BCCI's services were essential.112

Both Ghorbanifar and Khashoggi have been presented as mavericks interested in arms sales for their own individual profit. However the participation of Copeland  suggests that, once again,  what Copeland called “friends in Langley” may have been interested in engaging them in an operation to which both the Secretaries of State and of Defense were resolutely opposed.

The Deep State and the BCCI Cover-Up

It is clear that for years the American deep state in Washington was both involved with and protected BCCI. Acting CIA director Richard Kerr acknowledged to a Senate Committee “that the CIA had also used BCCI for certain intelligence-gathering operations.”113

Later, a congressional inquiry showed that for more than ten years preceding the BCCI collapse in the summer of 1991, the FBI, the DEA, the CIA, the Customs Service, and the Department of Justice all failed to act on hundreds of tips about the illegalities of BCCI’s international activities.114

Far less clear is the attitude taken by Wall Street banks towards the miscreant BCCI. The Senate report on BCCI charged however that the Bank of England “had withheld information about BCCI’s frauds from public knowledge for 15 months before closing the bank.”115

Of course the scope and influence of BCCI reflected changes in the global superstructure of finance since the oil price hikes of the 1970s. A recent study of the dangerously unstable concentration of ownership in the world showed only four recognizable Wall Street institutions among the top twenty: JPMorgan Chase & Co, the Goldman Sachs Group, Bank of New York Mellon Corp, and Merrill Lynch.116 Of these, Bank of New York, the bank heavily involved in the 1990s looting of Russia, interlocked with BCCI through the Swiss banking activities of the international banker Bruce Rappaport, “thought to have ties to US and Israeli intelligence.” (Alfred Hartmann, a board member of BCCI, was both vice-chairman of Rappaport's Swiss bank, Bank of New York-Intermaritime, and also head of BCCI’s Swiss subsidiary, the Banque de Commerce et de Placements).117 The mysterious E.P. Barry, the OSS veteran who had overseen the recovery of SS gold in Operation Safehaven before becoming the banking partner of Paul Helliwell, was also a major stockholder in Rappaport’s Inter Maritime Bank.)118

The collapse of BCCI in 1991 did not see an end to systematic Saudi-financed political corruption in the U.S. and elsewhere. After a proposed major arms sale in the 1980s met enhanced opposition in Congress from the Israeli lobby, Saudi Arabia negotiated a multi-billion pound long-term contract with the United Kingdom – the so-called al-Yamamah deal. It developed much later that overpayments for the purchased weapons were siphoned off into a huge slush fund for political payoffs, including “hundreds of millions of pounds to the ex-Saudi ambassador to the US, Prince Bandar bin Sultan."119 According to Robert Lacey, the payments to Prince Bandar were said to total one billion pounds over more than a decade, including “a suitcase containing more than $10 million” that went to a Vatican priest for the CIA’s long-time clients, the Christian Democratic Party.120 The money went through a Saudi Embassy account in the Riggs Bank, Washington; according to Trento, the Embassy’s use of the Riggs Bank dated back to the mid-1970s, when, in his words, “the Saudi royal family had taken over intelligence financing for the United States.”121

As we saw earlier. the CIA had “laundered over $10 million in captured Axis funds to influence the [Italian] election [of 1948].”122 These practices, in other words, survived the legal efforts to end them.

Conclusion: A Supranational Deep State

The complex milieu of Khashoggi, the BCCI, and the Safari Club can be characterized as a supranational deep state, whose organic links to the CIA may have helped consolidate it. It is clear however that decisions taken at this level by the Safari Club and BCCI were in no way guided by the political determinations of those elected to power in Washington. On the contrary, Prince Turki’s candid remarks revealed that the Safari Club (with the alleged participation of two former CIA Directors, Bush and Helms) was expressly created to overcome restraints established by political decisions in Washington.

A former Turkish president and prime minister once commented that the Turkish deep state was the real state, and the public state was only a “spare state,” not the real one.123 A better understanding of the American deep state is necessary, if we are to prevent it from assuming permanently the same role.

Peter Dale Scott, a former Canadian diplomat and English Professor at the University of California, Berkeley, is the author of Drugs Oil and War, The Road to 9/11, and The War Conspiracy: JFK, 9/11, and the Deep Politics of War. His most recent book is American War Machine: Deep Politics, the CIA Global Drug Connection and the Road to Afghanistan. His website, which contains a wealth of his writings, is here.

Recommended Citation: Peter Dale Scott, "The State, the Deep State, and the Wall Street Overworld," The Asia-Pacific Journal, Volume 12, Issue 10, No. 5, March 10, 2014.

Notes

1 Dana Priest and William Arkin, Top Secret America: The Rise of the New American Security State (New York: Little Brown, 2011), 52.

2 E.g. Marc Ambinder and D.G. Grady, Deep State: Inside the Government Secrecy Industry (New York: Wiley, 2013); cf. John Tirman, “The Quiet Coup: No, Not Egypt. Here,” HuffingtonPost, July 9, 2013: “Now we know: the United States of America is partially governed by a deep state, undemocratic, secret, aligned with intelligence agencies, spying on friend and foe, lawless in almost every respect.”

3 Mike Lofgren, “A Shadow Government Controls America,” Reader Supported News, February 22, 2014.

4 Grant Barrett, “A Wordnado of Words in 2013,” New York Times, December 21, 2013.

5 Peter Dale Scott, Deep politics and the death of JFK (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1998), 7.

6Tom Hayden discussing the crisis in Venezuela,” Tikkun, February 25, 2014.

7 To take a single telling example, six of Sam Walton's heirs are now reportedly wealthier than the bottom 30% of Americans, or 94.5 million people (Tim Worstall, “Six Waltons Have More Wealth Than the Bottom 30% of Americans,” Forbes, December 14, 2011). Cf. the devastating picture of a disintegrating America in George Packer, The Unwinding: An Inner History of the New America (New York: Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2013).

8 See Kevin Phillips, The politics of rich and poor: wealth and the American electorate in the Reagan aftermath (New York: HarperCollins, 1991). Cf. John T. Stinson, The Reagan Legacy (Bloomington, IN: iUniverse, 2009), 146; Timothy Noah, The great divergence: America's growing inequality crisis and what we can do about it (New York: Bloomsbury, 2012).

9 For the impact of railroads on expanded social awareness, see Benedict Anderson, Imagined communities: reflections on the origin and spread of nationalism (London: Verso, 1991).

10What is the Deep State?” On Religion [2013].

11 Gareth Jenkins, “Susurluk and the Legacy of Turkey’s Dirty War,” Terrorism Monitor, May 1, 2008; quoted in Peter Dale Scott, “9/11, Deep State Violence and the Hope of Internet Politics," Global Research, June 11, 2008. For the Susurluk incident, see also Scott, American War Machine, 19-20, etc.

12 Scott, Deep Politics and the Death of JFK, xi-xii.

13 Lofgren, “ A Shadow Government Controls America.”

14 Quoted in Peter Dale Scott, The Road to 9/11: Wealth, Empire, and the Future of America, 1.

15 Forbes magazine founder Bertie Charles Forbes wrote six years later: “Picture a party of the nation's greatest bankers stealing out of New York on a private railroad car under cover of darkness, stealthily riding hundred[s] of miles South, embarking on a mysterious launch, sneaking onto an island [the appropriately named Jekyll Island] deserted by all but a few servants, living there a full week under such rigid secrecy that the names of not one of them was once mentioned, lest the servants learn the identity and disclose to the world this strangest, most secret expedition in the history of American finance. I am not romancing; I am giving to the world, for the first time, the real story of how the famous Aldrich currency report, the foundation of our new currency system, was written (B.C. Forbes, Leslie’s Weekly, October 19, 1916; in T. Cushing Daniel, Real money versus false money-bank credits; the most important factor in civilization and least understood by the people [Washington, D.C., The Monetary educational bureau, 1924], 169; cf. B.C. Forbes, Men who are making America [New York: Forbes Publishing Co., 1922], 398; cf. G. Edward Griffin, The Creature from Jekyll Island: A Second Look at the Federal Reserve [Westlake Village, CA: American Media, 1994]). Paul Warburg later wrote that “Though eighteen years have since gone by, I do not feel free to give a description of this most interesting conference, concerning which Senator Aldrich pledged all participants to secrecy” (Paul Warburg, The Federal Reserve System: Its Origin and Growth [New York, Macmillan, 1930], ZZ).

16 Congress was persuaded to provide perfunctory support of the bailout, under an alleged mysterious threat of martial law. See Peter Dale Scott, “Martial Law, the Financial Bailout, and War,” Global Research, January 8, 2009; reprinted in  Michel Chossudovsky and Andrew Gavin Marshall, eds., The Global Economic Crisis: The Great Depression of the XXI Century (Montreal, Global Research Publishers. Centre for Research on Globalization, 2010), 219-40; Llewellyn H. Rockwell, Jr., “Sen. Inhofe: [Henry] Paulsen [Secretary of the Treasury and former Chief Executive Officer of Goldman Sachs] Threatened Martial Law To Pass Bailout,” LewRockwell.com, November 20, 2008.

17 Richard Helms with William Hood A look over my shoulder: a life in the Central Intelligence Agency (New York: Random House, 2003), 82-83. Cf. Scott, American War Machine, 26-28.

18 Laurence H Shoup and William Minter, Imperial brain trust: the Council on Foreign Relations and United States foreign policy (New York: Monthly Review Press, 1977).

19 Gordon Thomas, Secret Wars: One Hundred Years of British Intelligence Inside MI5 and MI6 (New York: Thomas Dunne Books/ St. Martin’s Press, 2009), 98. This may have occurred during Dulles’s visit to Europe in the spring of 1947 (James Srodes, Dulles: Master of Spies [Washington: Henry Regnery, 1999], 392).

20 Richard Aldrich, The Hidden Hand: Britain, America, and Cold War secret intelligence (Woodstock, NY: Overlook Press, 2001), 343. Dulles also chaired the executive committee of the companion National Committee for a Free Europe (behind the Iron Curtain), whose legal affairs were handled by Sullivan and Cromwell (Wilson D. Miscamble, George F. Kennan and the Making of American Foreign Policy, 1947-1950 (Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 1992), 204.

21 Amy B. Zegart, Flawed by Design: The Evolution of the CIA, JCS, and NSC (Stanford: Stanford UP, 1999), 189; citing Christopher Andrew, For the President’s Eyes Only (New York: HarperCollins, 1995), 172; see also Church Committee, Final Report, Book 4, 28-29.

22 David Wise and Thomas B. Ross, The Espionage Establishment (New York: Random House, 1967), 166; Scott, Road to 9/11, 13.

23 “In January 1946 Dulles outlined in some detail a reconstruction plan that is one of the earliest notions of what would, a year later, be known as the Marshall Plan” (Srodes, Allen Dulles: Master of Spies, 374).

24 Tim Weiner, Legacy of ashes: the history of the CIA (New York: Doubleday, 2007), 28.

25 Douglas Valentine, “The French Connection Revisited: The CIA, Irving Brown, and Drug Smuggling as Political Warfare,” Covert Action.

26 Norbert Schlei, “Japan's ‘M-Fund’ Memorandum, January 7, 1991,“ JPRI [Japan Policy Research Institute] Working Paper No. 11: July 1995: “Incident to the revision of the Security Treaty [in 1960], Vice President Nixon agreed to turn over exclusive control of the M-Fund to Japan. It has been alleged that this action by Nixon was part of a corrupt political bargain, whereby it was agreed that if Japan would assist him to become President of the United States, Nixon would agree to release control of the Fund to Japan and, if he became President, would return Okinawa to Japan.”

27 "C.I.A. Spent Millions to Support Japanese Right in 50's and 60's," New York Times, October 9, 1994. Cf. Scott, American War Machine, 93-94, 298-99; citing Chalmers Johnson, “The 1955 System and the American Connection: A Bibliographic Introduction,” JPRI [Japan Policy Research Institute] Working Paper No. 11: July 1995.

28 Sterling Seagrave and Peggy Seagrave, Gold warriors: America's secret recovery of Yamashita's gold (London: Verso, 2003). Cf. Richard Hoyt, Old Soldiers Sometimes Lie (New York: Forge, 2002), 80.

29 Scott, American War Machine, 94, etc.

30 Scott, American War Machine,

31 Norman Mailer, “A Harlot High and Low: Reconnoitering Through the Secret Government,” New York, August 16, 1976 (Hughes); Michael Schaller, Altered states: the United States and Japan since the occupation (New York: Oxford University Press, 1997), 294 (Lockheed).

32 Johnson, “The 1955 System and the American Connection.”

33  David E. Kaplan and Alec Dubro, Yakuza: Japan's Criminal Underworld (Berkeley: University of California Press, 2003), 89-90. Cf. Jonathan Marshall, in William O. Walker, III, ed., Drug control policy: essays in historical and comparative perspective (University Park, PA: Pennsylvania State University Press, 1992), 108:

“Yoshio Kodama’s fortune, built of profits from tungsten and opium, established the party that today rules Japan…. Kodama contributed to the pervasive corruption of Japanese politics by steering huge corporate contributions into the coffers of favored LDP members. This pattern culminated in the Lockheed scandal, which revealed that multi-million-dollar payoff by American aerospace firms had swayed key procurement decisions by Japan’s national airline and defense establishment and raised the possibility that the CIA had used Kodama and corporate funds to influence Japanese politics. The money-laundering channel used for Lockheed’s bribes was favored both by the CIA and international drug traffickers.”

34 Thomas Fensch, ed. The C.I.A. and the U-2 Program: 1954-1974 (The Woodlands, TX: New Century Books, 2001).

35 William D. Hartung, Prophets of war: Lockheed Martin and the making of the military-industrial complex (New York: Nation Books, 2011), 121; David Boulton, The Grease Machine (New York: Harper & Row, 1978), 97 (friends).

36 Andrew Feinstein, The shadow world: inside the global arms trade (New York: Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2011), 265; Anthony Sampson, The Arms Bazaar (New York: Viking, 1977), 135-36.

37 Bradley R. Simpson, Economists with guns: authoritarian development and U.S.-Indonesian relations, 1960-1968  (Stanford: Stanford University Press, 2008), 142;

quoting from CIA, “Political Action Project,”, November 19, 1964; FRUS, 1964-1968, 26:181-84.

38 In addition there was “a US deal to deliver 200 light aircraft to the Indonesian Army in July 1965.” The aircraft went to the army’s Diponegoro division, which “ as well as supplying the bulk of the  [September 30] “coup” personnel in Java, … also provided the bulk of the personnel for its suppression” (Nathaniel Mehr, Constructive bloodbath' in Indonesia: the United States, Britain and the mass killings of 1965-66 [Nottingham: Spokesman Books, 2009], 36).

39 Peter Dale Scott, “The United States and the Overthrow of Sukarno, 1965-1967,” Pacific Affairs, 58, Summer 1985; citing

United States. Congress. Senate. Committee on Foreign Relations, Multinational corporations and United States foreign policy, hearings before the Subcommittee on Multinational Corporations (Washington: U.S. Govt. Printing Office, 1973-1976), Part 12, 937-65.

40 Scott, “The United States and the Overthrow of Sukarno.”

41 Masashi Nishihara, The Japanese and Sukarno's Indonesia: Tokyo-Jakarta relations, 1951-1966 (Honolulu: University Press of Hawaii, 1976), 171, 194, 202; Scott, “The United States and the Overthrow of Sukarno.”

42 Fortune, July 1973, 154, cf. Wall Street Journal, April 18, 1967.

43 John Dumbrell and Axel R Schäfer (eds.), America's 'special relationships’: foreign and domestic aspects of the politics of alliance (London: Routledge, 2009), 187.

44 John Foster Dulles to Lord McGowan, Chairman of Imperial Chemical Industries; in Nancy Lisagor and Frank Lipsius, A law unto itself: the untold story of the law firm of Sullivan & Cromwell (New York: Morrow, 1988), 127.

45 Charles T. O'Reilly, Forgotten Battles: Italy's War of Liberation, 1943-1945 (Lanham, MD: Lexington Books, 2001), 288; Peter Dale Scott, "How Allen Dulles and the SS Preserved Each Other," Covert Action Information Bulletin, 25 (Winter 1986), 4-14.  Dulles’s plans to use SS resources in post-war Germany cab be seen as part of a successful plan to frustrate the implementation of Roosevelt’s so-called Morgenthau Plan to deindustrialize Germany.

46 Stephen Dorril, MI6, 659-660.

47 Ovid Demaris, Dirty Business: The Corporate-Political Money-Power Game (New York: Avon, 1974), 213-14.

48 J.P.D. Dunbabin, International relations since 1945 : a history in two volumes

(London: Longman, 1994), Vol 2, 344. The boycott is denied without argumentation in Exxon’s corporate history (Bennett H. Wall et al., Growth in a changing environment: a history of Standard Oil Company (New Jersey), Exxon Corporation, 1950-1975 (New York: McGraw-Hill, 1988), Vol. 4, 476: “Despite oft-printed statements to the contrary, the oil majors did not conspire to boycott NIOC oil.”

49 Robert Palmer Smith, Darkest truths of black gold: an oil industry executive breaks the industry's code of silence (New York: iUniverse, 2007), 256. In July 1952 Mossadeq attempted to break the embargo by contracting to sell oil to a small private Italian oil firm. The manoeuver was frustrated by the British Royal Navy, which in July 1952 intercepted the Italian tanker Rose Mary and redirected it to Aden. The news dissuaded other tankers from trying to reach Abadan (Mary Ann Heiss, Empire and Nationhood: The United States, Great Britain, and Iranian Oil, 1950-1954 [New York: Columbia University Press, 1997], 130; Stephen Kinzer, All the Shah's men: an American coup and the roots of Middle East terror [Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons, 2003], 136).

50 Mostafa Elm, Oil, Power, and Principle: Iran's Oil Nationalization and Its Aftermath (Syracuse, NY: Syracuse University Press, 1992), 198-99 (Churchill); Robert Moskin, American Statecraft: The Story of the U.S. Foreign Service (New York: Thomas Dunne Books/ St. Martin's Press, 2013), 627-28 (Harriman).

51 Demaris, Dirty Business, 214-25: “The incoming Eisenhower Administration… quickly dropped the criminal case. The civil suit that was instituted alleged that the five American oil companies violated the Sherman Antitrust and the Wilson Tariff Acts by conspiring to divide and control foreign production and distribution…. An inadequate staff was assigned to the case and the action finally petered out a decade later with a couple of meaningless consent decrees.”

52 Robert Sherrill, The oil follies of 1970-1980: how the petroleum industry stole the show (and much more besides) (Garden City, NY: Anchor Press/Doubleday, 1983), 221).

53  William R. Freudenburg and Robert Gramling,     Oil in troubled waters: perceptions, politics, and the battle over offshore drilling (Albany : State University of New York Press, 1994); 17; citing Shukri Mohammed Ghanem, OPEC, the Rise and Fall of an Exclusive Club (London : KPI, 1986); Mira Wilkins, “The Oil Companies in Perspective,” in Raymond Vernon (ed.), The Oil Crisis (New York: Norton, 1976).

54 William Roger Louis, “Britain and the Overthrow of Mossadeq,” in Mark J. Gasiorowski and Malcolm Byrne (eds.), Mohammad Mosaddeq and the 1953 coup in Iran (Syracuse: Syracuse University Press, 2004), 168. Cf. William R. Clark, Petrodollar warfare: oil, Iraq and the future of the dollar (Gabriola Island, B.C.: New Society Publishers, 2005), 125: “[T]he Dulles brothers had already conceived a plot when Eisenhower became president in January 1953.”

55 Scot Macdonald, Rolling the iron dice : historical analogies and decisions to use military force in regional contingencies (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 2000), 98. Cf. Richard H. Immerman, John Foster Dulles: Piety, Pragmatism, and Power in U.S. Foreign Policy (Wilmington, DE: Scholarly Resources, 1999), 67. Allen Dulles played a personal role in TP/AJAX, by flying to Italy and persuading the frightened Shah to return to Tehran.

56 In the past, wishing to dissociate the term “deep state” from organizational connotations, I have written of the American “deep state” as “a milieu both inside and outside government with the power to steer the history of the public state and sometimes redirect it” (“William Pawley, the Kennedy Assassination, and Watergate,” Global Research, November 29, 2012. But because there are extra-governmental structural components to the deep state, it might be better to think of it as not just a milieu, but more analogous to an oligopolistic market.

57 See Chalmers A Johnson, The Sorrows of Empire: Militarism, Secrecy, and the End of the Republic (New York: Metropolitan Books, 2004), 218-19; Timothy Mitchell, Carbon Democracy: Political Power in the Age of Oil (New York: Verso Books, 2011), 212.

58 Tim Shorrock, Spies for Hire (New York: Simon & Schuster, 2008), 6.

59 Glenn Greenwald, “Mike McConnell, the WashPost & the dangers of sleazy corporatism,” Salon, March 29, 2010.

60 George H. W. Bush was an adviser to Carlyle, which in its early days “backed a management-led buyout of Caterair and appointed George W Bush to the board” (Jamie Doward, “Bush Sr's Carlyle Group Gets Fat On War And Conflict,” The Observer, March 25, 2003.)

61 Lofgren, “ A Shadow Government Controls America.”

62 Booz Allen Hamilton’s headquarters is now in McLean, Virginia, close to the HQ of the CIA.

63 Art Kleiner, Booz Allen Hamilton: Helping Clients Envision the Future, (Old Saybrook, CT: Greenwich Publishing, 2004), 43.

64 John Prados, Safe for Democracy: The Secret Wars of the CIA (Chicago: Ivan R. Dee, 2006.), 139. Cf. Christine N. Halili, Philippine History (Manila: Rex Book Store, 2004), 258 (Philippines land distribution).

65 Miles Copeland, The Game Player: the confessions of the CIA's original political operative (London: Aurum Press, 1989), 158.

66 Ephraim Kahana and Muhammad Suwaed, Historical dictionary of Middle Eastern intelligence (Lanham, MD: Scarecrow Press, 2009), 65 {“advisor”); Jack O'Connell, King's Counsel: A Memoir of War, Espionage, and Diplomacy in the Middle East, (New York : W.W. Norton & Co., 2011), 20 (channel).

67 The BCCI Affair: BCCI, the CIA and Foreign Intelligence, Report to the U.S. Senate Committee on Foreign Relations by John Kerry and Hank Brown, December 1992; 102nd Congress, 2nd Session, Senate Print 102-140 (“agent”).

68 William D. Hartung, Prophets of war: Lockheed Martin and the making of the military-industrial complex (New York: Nation Books, 2011), 126.

69 Copeland, The Game Player, 231.

70 Copeland, The Game Player, 233.

71 Copeland, The Game Player, 239.

72 E.g. Evan Thomas, The Very Best Men: Four Who Dared: The Early Years of the CIA

 (New York: Simon & Schuster, 1995), 380.

73 Larry J. Kolb, Overworld: The Life and Times of a Reluctant Spy [New York: Riverhead/Penguin, 2004], 237-38. Cf. Copeland, The Game Player, 230, 262-63; Ronald Kessler, The Richest Man in the World: The Story of Adnan Khashoggi (New York: Warner Books), 300-01: “[O]n May 17, 1983, [Khashoggi] submitted to President Reagan a confidential ‘yellow paper’ [which] proposed an economic aid program similar to the 1949 Marshall Plan developed by the U.S. for Europe. Called a Peace Fund, it would provide up to $300 billion in regional economic aid from the U.S., Saudi Arabia and Kuwait to Israel and any Arab country that signed a peace treaty with it.”

74 Peter Dale Scott, “Deep Events and the CIA's Global Drug Connection,” 911truth.org, October 12, 2008; American War Machine, 160-65.

75The BCCI Affair.” Khashoggi’s status had declined, but by no means vanished. As late as 2003, Khashoggi was negotiating with Richard Perle, a member of the Cheney-Rumsfeld clique who at the time was still Chairman of the U.S. Defense Policy Board, to invest considerable Saudi money in Perle's company Trireme (Seymour Hersh, New Yorker, 3/17/03).

76 Copeland, Game Player, 239; cf. 2128.

77 Kessler, The Richest Man in the World, 84, 188, etc.; Scott, American War Machine, 158-62.

78 “Moss, Edward K. #172 646,” CIA Memo of 19 April 1967, NARA #104-10122-10006; CIA Inspector General’s Report on CIA-Mafia Plots to Assassinate Fidel Castro, NARA # 104-10213-10101, p. 38. Cf. memo of 7 November 1962 in CIA’s Edward K. Moss folder, p. 26, NARA #1994.05.03.10:54:53:780005.

79 “Manuel Antonio Varona,” FBI Memorandum of January 16, 1961 to A. H. Belmont, p. 2, 105-76826-20; NARA #124-90055-10139. Cf. “Moss, Edward K. #172 646,” CIA Memo of 14 May 1973, in Meyer Lansky Security File, p. 9, NARA #1993.08.13.17:42:12:560059; CIA letter of 16 December 1960 to FBI, FBI file 105-76826-18; NARA #124-90055-10133. The CIA itself had notified the FBI on December 16, 1960, that Julia “Cellino” had advised that her brothers “have long been associated in the narcotics and white slavery rackets in Cuba (CIA letter of 16 December 1960 to Director, FBI, FBI File 105-76826-18; NARA #124-90055-10133; apparently no copy of this letter has been released from CIA files).

80 Kessler, Richest Man in the World, 29 (Yassin), 275–78 (Khashoggi). A friend of Khashoggi’s, Larry Kolb, reports that Khashoggi himself essentially corroborated the story that Khashoggi and John Kennedy had a friendship in the 1950s that “evolved primarily out of whoring together” (Larry J. Kolb, Overworld: The Life and Times of a Reluctant Spy [New York: Riverhead/Penguin, 2004], 236). The woman who destroyed the presidential aspirations of Senator Gary Hart in 1987 was one of Khashoggi’s many girls.

81 Anthony Summers with Robbyn Swan, The Arrogance of Power: The Secret World of Richard Nixon (New York: Viking, 2000), 283. Cf. Kessler, The Richest Man in the World, 171: Khashoggi told the prosecutors “that he churned millions through the tiny [Rebozo] bank to win favor with the president.”

82 Investigative reporter Jim Hougan reports the incredulity of congressional investigators that Lockheed was the only large corporation not to have made a contribution to Nixon’s 1972 election campaign (Hougan, Spooks, 457–58.

83 Scott, Road to 9/11, 35; citing Summers, Arrogance of Power, 283; Robert Baer, Sleeping with the Devil (New York: Crown, 2003), 43. (Baer reports the year of the briefcase as 1968, not 1972.) Kolb (“unequivocally, and from personal experience”) denies the briefcase story (Overworld, 299).

84 Scott, Deep politics and the death of JFK, 234-39.

85 Kessler, Richest Man in the World, 129, 160-61. When Hughes flew from Las Vegas to the Paradise Island casino in the Bahamas (where Edward Moss’s brother-in-law Eddie Cellini was casino manager, he did so on a Khashoggi plane. (Kessler, Richest Man, 149-50).

86 Summers with Swan, The Arrogance of Power, 242, 252; Jim Hougan, Spooks, 398. Cf. Denny Walsh, New York Times, January 21, 1974; Gerth, in Government by Gunplay, 137-39.

87 Block, Masters of Paradise, 94-96; Summers with Swan, The Arrogance of Power, 244-45. Benguet Mines have also been associated with Yamashita’s gold (Seagrave, Gold Warriors, 147; Scott, American War Machine, 322n15).

88 Summers with Swan, The Arrogance of Power, 244-45, 253-54.

89 Scott, American War Machine, 71-72. Cf. Wall Street Journal, April 18, 1980: “In 1951, Mr. Helliwell helped set up and run Sea Supply Corp., a concern controlled by the CIA as a front. For almost 10 years, Sea Supply was used to supply huge amounts of weapons and equipment to 10,000 Nationalist Chinese [KMT] troops in Burma as well as to Thailand’s police.”

90 In the course of Operation Safehaven, the U.S. Third Army took an SS major “on several trips to Italy and Austria, and, as a result of these preliminary trips, over $500,000 in gold, as well as jewels, were recovered” (Anthony Cave Brown, The Secret War Report of the OSS [New York: Berkeley, 1976], 565-66).

91 Who's who in Finance and Industry, Marquis Who's Who, 1979, 568.

92 Kessler, Richest Man in the World, 238-41; Scott, American War Machine, 161-62.

93 The operation kept the name “Safari Club” even after moving from Khashoggi’s Club to a permanent headquarters in Cairo.

94 Ibrahim Warde, The price of fear: the truth behind the financial war on terror (Berkeley: University of California Press, 2007), 133. Cf. Lacey, Inside the Kingdom, 66, 72, 76.

95 Christopher Byron, "The Senate look at BCCI,” New York Magazine, October 28, 1991, 20–21.

96 Lacey, Inside the Kingdom, 66. Cf. John Cooley, Unholy Wars (London: Pluto Press, 1999), 24-27.

97 Mahmood Mamdani, Good Muslim, bad Muslim:  America, the Cold War, and the roots of terror (New York: Pantheon Books 2004), 84.

98 Mamdani, Good Muslim, bad Muslim, 85.

99 Joseph J. Trento, Prelude to terror: the rogue CIA and the legacy of America's private intelligence network (New York: Carroll & Graf, 2005), 61.

100 Trento, Prelude to terror, 104-05. Kevin Phillips also notes that  “Bush cemented strong relations with the intelligence services of both Saudi Arabia and the shah of Iran. He worked closely with Kamal Adham, the head of Saudi intelligence” (Kevin Phillips, “The Barrelling Bushes,” Los Angeles Times, January 11, 2004).

101 Trento, Prelude to terror, 113-14.

102 Phillips, “The Barrelling Bushes,” Los Angeles Times, January 11, 2004.

103 There is no published evidence that Copeland was involved in the Safari Club covert operations. But it may be significant that Copeland’s activity of advising the Egyptian Army became after the creation of the Safari Club a franchise of a “private” U.S. firm, J.J. Cappucci and Associates, owned by Theodore Shackley (Trento, Prelude to Terror, 150, 247).

104 Trento, Prelude to Terror, 139.

105 There is no published evidence that Copeland was involved in the Safari Club covert operations. But it may be significant that Copeland’s activity of advising the Egyptian Army became after the creation of the Safari Club a franchise of a “private” U.S. firm, J.J. Cappucci and Associates, owned by Theodore Shackley (Trento, Prelude to Terror, 150, 247).

106 Theodore Draper, A Very Thin Line (New York: Hill and Wang, 1991), 129, 131. Cf. Dan Raviv and Yossi Melman, Every spy a prince: the complete history of Israel's intelligence community (Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1990), 261; Mayn Katz, Song of Spies (Heliographica Press, 2005) 136-37.

107 Samuel Segev ; translated by Haim Watzman, The Iranian triangle : the untold story of Israel's role in the Iran-Contra (New York: The Free Press, 1988), 10. For the collaboration of Greenspun, Schwimmer and Meyer Lansky in gun-running, see Leonard Slater, The Pledge (New York, Simon and Schuster, 1970). Paul Helliwell may have been part of this operation; see Scott, American War Machine, 71, 164.

108 Copeland, The Game Player, 263.

109 Kolb, Overworld, 246.

110 Kolb, Overworld, 247.

111 Iran-Contra Affair, Report of the congressional committees investigating the Iran-Contra Affair (U.S. Congress, H. Rept. No. 100-433, S. Rept. No. 100-216), 164.

112 Kerry-Brown Report, Part 11, “BCCI, the CIA and Foreign Intelligence.”

113 Kerry-Brown Report, Part 11, “BCCI, the CIA and Foreign Intelligence.”

114 Dan Bawley, Corporate Governance and Accountability: What Role for the Regulator, Director, and Auditor? (Westport, CT: Quorum, 1999). 37.

115 Bawley, Corporate Governance and Accountability, 37.

116Revealed – the capitalist network that runs the world.” New Scientist, October 24, 2011.

117 Scott, American War Conspiracy, 163; quoting from Peter Truell and Larry Gurwin, False Profits: The Inside Story of BCCI, the World’s Most Corrupt Financial Empire (Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1992), 384 (“ties”).

118 Alan A. Block and Constance A. Weaver, All is clouded by desire: global banking, money laundering, and international organized crime (Westport, CT: Praeger, 2004), 36-37.

119Saudi prince 'received arms cash',” BBC, June 7, 2007. It is unclear whether payments continued after 2001, when the UK signed the OECD's Anti-Bribery Convention, making such overpayments illegal.

120 Robert Lacey, Inside the Kingdom: Kings, Clerics, Modernists, Terrorists, and the Struggle for Saudi Arabia (New York: Penguin Books, 2009), 108.

121 Trento, Prelude to Terror, 102.

122 Amy B. Zegart, Flawed by Design: The Evolution of the CIA, JCS, and NSC (Stanford: Stanford UP, 1999), 189; citing Christopher Andrew, For the President’s Eyes Only (New York: HarperCollins, 1995), 172; see also Church Committee, Final Report, Book 4, 28-29.

123 Former Turkish President and Prime Minister Suleyman Demirel commented that “In our country… there is one deep state and one other state…. The state that should be real is the spare one, the one that should be spare is the real one” (Jon Gorvett, “Turkey’s ‘Deep State’ Surfaces in Former President’s Words, Deeds in Kurdish Town,” Washington Report on Middle East Affairs, January/February 2006); quoted in Scott, American War Machine, 24.


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[May 25, 2017] The electoral college was put in place to keep the major population centers from determining the vote

May 25, 2017 | www.unz.com

anarchyst , May 22, 2017 at 2:25 pm GMT

@Svigor

I keep trying to explain this "popular vote" thing: The Electoral College system is essentially mandatory voting: every person casts a vote via the electoral college, whether they actually fill out a ballot or not. Choosing not to fill out a ballot is a vote for "I'll go with the majority's decision."

The entire population of the United States of America is represented in this process: everyone is either a proxy (voter), or has his vote cast by a proxy.

The "popular vote" mantra is the scuzzbucket Democrat way of dismissing the legitimacy of the people who vote by proxy. It's Democrats' way of saying these people don't matter. And this from the party that claims to support mandatory voting!

The will of the people is expressed in the Electoral College. And in the 2016 election, that will very much favored Trump over Clinton.

geokat62 , May 22, 2017 at 3:31 pm GMT

The electoral college is the "equalizer" which forces the candidates to campaign in all 50 states

That's the theory. The reality is more like:

The electoral college is the "equalizer" which forces the candidates to campaign in all 15 battleground states

or better still:

The electoral college is the "equalizer" which forces the candidates to campaign in all 5 states (CO, FL, NV, OH, VA) that have been truly competitive over the last five presidential elections

Joe Franklin , May 22, 2017 at 6:47 pm GMT

@anarchyst The electoral college was put in place to keep the major population centers from determining the vote. Without the electoral college, the prospective presidential candidates would only have to cater to the major population centers and could safely ignore "flyover country", as the east and west coasts would have enough "clout" to determine the direction of the vote.
The electoral college is the "equalizer" which forces the candidates to campaign in all 50 states...

utu , May 22, 2017 at 3:32 pm GMT

@anarchyst The electoral college was put in place to keep the major population centers from determining the vote. Without the electoral college, the prospective presidential candidates would only have to cater to the major population centers and could safely ignore "flyover country", as the east and west coasts would have enough "clout" to determine the direction of the vote.
The electoral college is the "equalizer" which forces the candidates to campaign in all 50 states...

[May 25, 2017] Poll Watergate was a CIA plot to depose Nixon - Watergate - The Education Forum

Mar 13, 2013 | educationforum.ipbhost.com
Douglas Caddy

Posted March 13, 2013 (edited)

The reason I voted the way I did is that I think Military Intelligence played a greater role in deposing Nixon than did the CIA. Washington, D.C. police detective Carl Shoffler who arrested the burglars was a Military Intelligence agent assigned to the D.C. police department. He had prior knowledge of the planned break-in at Watergate on June 17, 1972.

Howard Hunt was a CIA agent and at least two of the arrested burglars had long-standing connections to the CIA. The CIA hierarchy was well aware of Hunt's activities prior to the arrests at Watergate. The CIA was drastically and negatively affected by the fallout of the Watergate scandal while the Military escaped basically unscathed.

The dictionary defines "depose" as: to remove from high office." I believe the Watergate break-in operation was primarily a CIA operation. I do not believe its intent was to remove President Nixon from the presidency. I do believe Shoffler's intent was to remove Nixon from office and that he had shared his prior knowledge of the planned break-in with his superiors in the Military and that a decision adverse to Nixon had been reached.

Edited March 14, 2013 by Douglas Caddy Mark Gorton

Posted March 14, 2013

Douglas,

Thanks for voting. I have not studied the boundaries or links between military intelligence and the CIA as regards Watergate, and at times I use the term CIA to refer to the entire intelligence complex. Particularly when dealing with unofficial, off the books operations, a lot of operations are done by an informal network of current/former military/intelligence people who move around within organizations. I consider George HW Bush to be a senior if not THE senior person in the CIA watergate hierarchy; however, Bush was most likely not a CIA employee during the Nixon years; however, he remained part of unofficial CIA old-boys network which really ran things.

I have a hard time understanding the boundaries and linkages between the CIA, DIA, ONI and other military intelligence agencies. At times they seem to act in unison, and at other times, they are somewhat independent.

It seems like you agree that Nixon was deposed by the intelligence complex. Can you suggest a better phrasing of the question which might better include your viewpoint?? And what are some other Military Intelligence links to Watergate?

Best Regards,

Mark

Posted March 15, 2013

On ‎3‎/‎14‎/‎2013 at 5:05 PM, Mark Gorton said: Douglas,

Thanks for voting. I have not studied the boundaries or links between military intelligence and the CIA as regards Watergate, and at times I use the term CIA to refer to the entire intelligence complex. Particularly when dealing with unofficial, off the books operations, a lot of operations are done by an informal network of current/former military/intelligence people who move around within organizations. I consider George HW Bush to be a senior if not THE senior person in the CIA watergate hierarchy; however, Bush was most likely not a CIA employee during the Nixon years; however, he remained part of unofficial CIA old-boys network which really ran things.

I have a hard time understanding the boundaries and linkages between the CIA, DIA, ONI and other military intelligence agencies. At times they seem to act in unison, and at other times, they are somewhat independent.

It seems like you agree that Nixon was deposed by the intelligence complex. Can you suggest a better phrasing of the question which might better include your viewpoint?? And what are some other Military Intelligence links to Watergate?

Best Regards,

Mark

This is a complex issue.

Both the CIA and Military Intelligence had separate secret operations inside the White House that essentially monitored everything Nixon said or did.

The Watergate break-in was a CIA operation. However, Military Intelligence possessed prior knowledge of the planned break-in. This was because Carl Shoffler, the D.C. detective who arrested the burglars at Watergate, was a Military Intelligence agent assigned to the D.C. police. He had learned of the planned break-in weeks before it took place.

The CIA had its own file on the role of Military Intelligence inside the White House and in Watergate.

Military Intelligence undertook an operation to steal this key CIA file that was successful.

This prevented the real role of Military Intelligence in Nixon being deposed from ever becoming part of the public record.

Some of this is explained in the link below:

http://educationforum.ipbhost.com/index.php?showtopic=17579

[May 24, 2017] Rank Incompetence by William S. Lind

Notable quotes:
"... The schools teach a combination of staff process and sophomore-level college courses in government and international relations. No one is taught how to be a commander in combat. One Army lieutenant colonel recently wrote me that he got angry when he figured out that nothing he needs to know to command would be taught to him in any Army school. ..."
"... The promotion system reinforces professional ignorance. ..."
Feb 01, 2013 | www.theamericanconservative.com
It was tragic that the career of General David Petraeus was brought down by a mere affair. It should have ended several years earlier as a consequence of his failure as our commander in Afghanistan. Petraeus, like every other theater commander in that war except Stanley McChrystal, could have been replaced by a concrete block and nothing would have changed. They all kept doing the same things while expecting a different result.

Thomas Ricks's recent book The Generals has reintroduced into the defense debate a vital factor the press and politicians collude in ignoring: military incompetence. It was a major theme of the Military Reform Movement of the 1970s and '80s. During those years, a friend of mine who was an aide to a Marine Corps commandant asked his boss how many Marine generals, of whom there were then 60-some, could competently fight a battle. The commandant came up with six. And the Marine Corps is the best of our services.

Military incompetence does not begin at the rank of brigadier general. An old French proverb says that the problem with the generals is that we select them from among the colonels. Nonetheless, military competence-the ability to see quickly what to do in a military situation and make it happen-is more rare at the general officer level. A curious aspect of our promotion system is that the higher the rank, the smaller the percentage of our competent officers.

Why is military incompetence so widespread at the higher levels of America's armed forces? Speaking from my own observations over almost 40 years, I can identify two factors. First, nowhere does our vast, multi-billion dollar military-education system teach military judgment. Second, above the rank of Army, Marine Corps, or Air Force captain, military ability plays essentially no role in determining who gets promoted. (It has been so long since our Navy fought another navy that, apart from the aviators, military competence does not seem to be a consideration at any level.)

Almost never do our military schools, academies, and colleges put students in situations where they have to think through how to fight a battle or a campaign, then get critiqued not on their answer but the way they think. Nor does American military training offer much free play, where the enemy can do whatever he wants and critique draws out why one side won and the other lost. Instead, training exercises are scripted as if we are training an opera company. The schools teach a combination of staff process and sophomore-level college courses in government and international relations. No one is taught how to be a commander in combat. One Army lieutenant colonel recently wrote me that he got angry when he figured out that nothing he needs to know to command would be taught to him in any Army school.

The promotion system reinforces professional ignorance. Above the company grades, military ability does not count in determining who gets promoted. At the rank of major, officers are supposed to accept that the "real world" is the internal world of budget and promotion politics, not war. Those who "don't get it" have ever smaller chances of making general. This represents corruption of the worst kind, corruption of institutional purpose. Its result is generals and admirals who are in effect Soviet industrial managers in ever worse-looking suits. They know little and care less about their intended product, military victory. Their expertise is in acquiring resources and playing the military courtier.

[May 24, 2017] Fire Burn and Cauldron Bubble for Trump by Eric Margolis

Notable quotes:
"... No mention of the 63 millions who voted for him. Trumps enemies will make sure there is no peace until Trump is driven from office. Blowback will insure there is no peace after the coup. ..."
"... Hilllary is of course also widely detested. In many ways, the last election was a contest about who the American people hate more, and Hillary got the award for Most Hated. Both candidates got a large percent of their votes from people who were voting against their opponent. Outside of CA, NY, and MA, more people hated Hillary, ..."
"... So, it turns out that Hillary is detested by the 'wrong' people. Hillary won the vote for most hated. But she's never investigated, the Clinton's are never charged. Bill openly violated election campaigning laws in MA, but no investigation, no charges. The Clintons have become filthy rich during a life of public service, but no investigations, no charges. And if you even want to hear about it, you have to turn off the corporate press and find independent reporters. ..."
May 20, 2017 | www.unz.com

"Double, double toil and trouble; Fire burn and cauldron bubble."
The witches in Macbeth.

President Trump's administration is now at a high boil as he faces intense heat from all sides. The Republican Party has backed away from their embattled president. US intelligence agencies are baying for his blood. The US media plays the role of the witches in 'Macbeth' as it plots against Trump.

One increasingly hears whispers about impeachment or the wonderful 1964 film about a military coup in Washington, 'Seven Days in May.'

As in Shakespeare's King Lear, Trump stands almost alone on a blasted heath, howling that he has been betrayed. The world watches on in dismay and shock.

One thing is clear: the US presidency has become too powerful when far-fetched talk of possibly Russian involvement in Trump's campaign could send world financial markets into a crash dive. And when Trump's ill informed, off the cuff remarks can endanger the fragile global balance of power.

Trump has made this huge mess and must now live with it. Yes, he is being treated unfairly by appointment of a special prosecutor when the titanic sleaze of the Clintons was never investigated. But that's what happens when you are widely detested. No mercy for Trump, a man without any mercy for others.

Trump is not a Manchurian candidate put into office by Moscow though his bungling aides and iffy financial deals often made it appear so. His choice of the fanatical Islamophobe Gen. Michael Flynn was an awful blunder. Flynn was revealed to have taken money from Turkey to alter US Mideast policy. Who else paid off Flynn? Disgraceful.

But what about all the politicians and officials who took and take money from the Saudis and Gulf emirates, or Sheldon Adelson, the ardent advocate of Greater Israel? What about political payoffs to the flat-earth Republicans who now act as Israel's amen chorus in Washington?

The growing scandals that are engulfing Trump's presidency seem likely to delay if not defeat the president's laudatory proposals to lower taxes, prune the bureaucracy, clean up intelligence, end America's foreign wars, and impose some sort of peace in the Mideast.

By recklessly proposing these reforms at the same time, Trump earned the hatred of the media, federal government, all intelligence agencies, and the Israel lobby, not to mention ecologists, free-thinkers, cultured people, academia and just about everyone else who does not raise cotton or abuse animals for a living.

No wonder Trump stands almost alone, like Rome's Horatio at the Bridge. One increasingly hears in Washington 'what Trump needs is a little war.'

That would quickly wrong-foot his critics and force the neocon media – Washington Post, Wall Street Journal, New York Times, and CNN – to back him. We already saw this happen when Trump fired salvos of cruise missiles at Syria. It would also provide welcome distraction from the investigations of Trump that are beginning.

Trump has appeared to be pawing the ground in a desire to attack naughty North Korea or Syria, and maybe even Yemen, Somalia or Sudan. A war against any of these small nations would allow the president to don military gear and beat his chest – as did the dunce George W. Bush. Bomb the usual Arabs!

Timur The Lame , May 21, 2017 at 12:02 am GMT

' As democracy is perfected, the office of president represents. more and more closely, the inner soul of the people. On some great and glorious day the plain folks of the land will reach their hart's desire at last and the White House will be adorned by a downright moron."

Shee-it! I thought Dubya accomplished this . Apparently the M'urkan public is being defiant and really wants to flaunt it's ignorance. Well, howdee! we got us a real contest goin' on now. Trump is obviously the proverbial monkey with a machine-gun. My inner survival instincts are starting to kick in. Does anyone see this this presidency as leveling out and trying to conduct business like you know as it has been in the last 200 years?

This is too insane. I honestly think that some kind of the fix is in. How? Don't know.

Every (real) man for himself now.

Cheers-

WorkingClass , May 21, 2017 at 2:22 pm GMT

By recklessly proposing these reforms at the same time, Trump earned the hatred of the media, federal government, all intelligence agencies, and the Israel lobby, not to mention ecologists, free-thinkers, cultured people, academia and just about everyone else who does not raise cotton or abuse animals for a living.

No mention of the 63 millions who voted for him. Trumps enemies will make sure there is no peace until Trump is driven from office. Blowback will insure there is no peace after the coup.

Hunsdon , May 21, 2017 at 9:22 pm GMT

Eric wrote: His choice of the fanatical Islamophobe Gen. Michael Flynn was an awful blunder. Flynn was revealed to have taken money from Turkey to alter US Mideast policy.

Hunsdon said: The notorious Islamophobe, in pay of the Next Sultan? Too delicious.

Promintory Rider , May 21, 2017 at 11:18 pm GMT

Hilllary is of course also widely detested. In many ways, the last election was a contest about who the American people hate more, and Hillary got the award for Most Hated. Both candidates got a large percent of their votes from people who were voting against their opponent. Outside of CA, NY, and MA, more people hated Hillary, and the Electoral College was put into place precisely to keep a big state or a couple of big states from dominating the election of a President. Even in the 1780′s, many Americans didn't want NY to have the power to pick a President on their own.

So, it turns out that Hillary is detested by the 'wrong' people. Hillary won the vote for most hated. But she's never investigated, the Clinton's are never charged. Bill openly violated election campaigning laws in MA, but no investigation, no charges. The Clintons have become filthy rich during a life of public service, but no investigations, no charges. And if you even want to hear about it, you have to turn off the corporate press and find independent reporters.

Thus, its not that Trust is simply the most detested. He's not. At worst, the last election said he's the second most detested person in the country. But, the "right" people all detest him. So, a small minority of government insiders and the members of the media want to run him out of town.

There's things he's done since he's been elected that I don't like. I don't like the way that saying he was against regime change and more wars in the middle east has turned out to be a massive lie. But still, this is rapidly getting to the point where the American people are going to need to speak up and tell their representatives and senators, especially the Republicans, that Trump was elected President and they don't want to see a coup remove him.

If not, then CA and NY and the Deep State and the Media millionaires will run this country and everyone will know that elections don't matter.

Miro23 , May 22, 2017 at 2:16 am GMT

But still, this is rapidly getting to the point where the American people are going to need to speak up and tell their representatives and senators, especially the Republicans, that Trump was elected President and they don't want to see a coup remove him.

This is exactly right, and as others have said, the place to do this is a state level by reestablishing a close contact between the public and their representatives and senators on a detailed issue by issue basis.

If their representative is part of the chorus supporting a "Russian Hacking " investigation, or is an advocate of further wars then they have to understand that they are in real political trouble.

"Political Trouble" is a large scale, local, well organized and continuous public attack on their electability.

If the public are to lazy to do this then they'll deserve what they get.

balderdash , May 23, 2017 at 3:33 pm GMT

@WorkingClass


By recklessly proposing these reforms at the same time, Trump earned the hatred of the media, federal government, all intelligence agencies, and the Israel lobby, not to mention ecologists, free-thinkers, cultured people, academia and just about everyone else who does not raise cotton or abuse animals for a living.
No mention of the 63 millions who voted for him. Trumps enemies will make sure there is no peace until Trump is driven from office. Blowback will insure there is no peace after the coup.
bob balkas , May 23, 2017 at 3:36 pm GMT

Few ruling classes had an opportunity to build an idyllical structure of society and governance over the last four centuries as the two ruling US classes had.

Instead, they created numerous cliquish cliques and with political powers of each clique diminishing from the two top classes down to the last class: prisoners, indigenes, white and black trash.

Eileen Kuch , May 23, 2017 at 9:08 pm GMT

@Miro23


But still, this is rapidly getting to the point where the American people are going to need to speak up and tell their representatives and senators, especially the Republicans, that Trump was elected President and they don't want to see a coup remove him.
This is exactly right, and as others have said, the place to do this is a state level by reestablishing a close contact between the public and their representatives and senators on a detailed issue by issue basis.

If their representative is part of the chorus supporting a "Russian Hacking " investigation, or is an advocate of further wars then they have to understand that they are in real political trouble.

"Political Trouble" is a large scale, local, well organized and continuous public attack on their electability.

If the public are to lazy to do this then they'll deserve what they get.

[May 24, 2017] All Power to the Banks!

This is not a new trick, but still it was impressive. Macron played his hand well and brought extreme neoliberals to power using threat of fascism, while his neoliberal views might be even closer to neo-fascism then LePen's.
"Divide and conquer" and "bait and switch" proved again very effective tools. In other words Macron victory is another neoliberal coup after Argentina and Brazil. Neoliberal zombies do not want to die. The power of neoliberal propaganda is still substantial -- the population can be brainwashed despite the fact that must now understand that neoliberal promised are fake and the redistribution of wealth up destroys middle class and impoverishes lower 60-80% of population
Notable quotes:
"... Les Républicains (LR), ..."
"... In reality, both have adopted neoliberal economic policies, or more precisely, they have followed European Union directives requiring member states to adopt neoliberal economic policies. Especially since the adoption of the common currency, the euro, a little over fifteen years ago, those economic policies have become tangibly harmful to France, hastening its deindustrialization, the ruin of its farmers and the growing indebtedness of the State to private banks. ..."
"... The most thoughtful reaction has been to start realizing that it is the European Union itself that imposes this unpopular economic conformism. ..."
"... To quell growing criticism of the European Union, the well-oiled Macron machine, labeled "En Marche!" ..."
"... The destruction of the Socialist Party was easy. Since the "Socialist" government was so unpopular that it could not hope to win, it was easy to lure prominent members of that party to jump the sinking ship and rally to Macron, who had been economics minister in that unpopular government, but who was advertised by all the media as "new" and "anti-system". ..."
"... Fillon still cared about preserving France, and favored an independent foreign policy including good Canard Enchainé ..."
"... These "civil society" newcomers tend to be successful individuals, winners in the game of globalized competition, who will have no trouble voting for anti-labor measures. Macron is thus confirming Marine Le Pen's longstanding assertion that the two main parties were really one big single party, whose rhetorical differences masked their political convergence. ..."
"... Macron won in part because older voters in particular were frightened by his opponents' hints at leaving the European Union, which they have been indoctrinated to consider necessary to prevent renewal of Europe's old wars. But only the hysterical anti-fascist scare can explain why self-styled leftist "revolutionaries" such as François Ruffin, known for his successful anti-capitalist movie "Merci Patron", could join the stampede to vote for Macron – promising to "oppose him later". But how? ..."
"... Later, after five years of Macron, opposition may be harder than ever. In recent decades, as manufacturing moves to low wage countries, including EU members such as Poland and Rumania, France has lost 40% of its industry. Loss of industry means loss of jobs and fewer workers. When industry is no longer essential, workers have lost their key power: striking to shut down industry. Currently the desperate workers in a failing auto-works factory in central France are threatening to blow it up unless the government takes measures to save their jobs. But violence is powerless when it has no price tag. ..."
"... The Macron program amounts to a profound ideological transformation of the French ideal of égalité ..."
"... Macron is sufficiently Americanized, or, to be more precise, globalized, to have declared that "there is no such thing as French culture". From this viewpoint, France is just a place open to diverse cultures, as well as to immigrants and of course foreign capital. He has clearly signaled his rejection of French independence in the foreign policy field. ..."
"... Macron echoes the Russophobic line of the neocons. He broke tradition on his inauguration by riding down the Champs-Elysées in a military vehicle. A change of tone is indicated by his cabinet nominations. The title of the new foreign minister, Jean-Yves Le Drian, who served as defense minister in the Hollande government, is "Minister of Europe and of Foreign Affairs", clearly giving Europe preference in the matter. Sylvie Goulard, an ardent Europeist who has remarked that "she does not feel French", has been named Minister of Armies and Minister of Defense. Clearly national defense is an afterthought, when the main idea is to deploy the armed forces in various joint Western interventions. ..."
"... Mélenchon ran a spectacularly popular campaign, leaving the Socialist Party far behind (the party he personally left behind years ago). Initially, as he seemed to be taking votes away from Le Pen as well as from the Socialists, he got friendly media coverage, but as he came closer to making it to the decisive second round, the tone started to change. Just as Le Pen was finally knocked out as a "fascist", there is little doubt that had Mélenchon been Macron's challenger, he would have been increasingly denounced as "communist". ..."
"... La France Insoumise ..."
"... categories populaires ..."
"... Marine Le Pen would have tried to enact measures to save French industry and the jobs it provides, provide various benefits for low-income people, withdraw from NATO, and even promote a peaceful world, starting with friendly relations with Russia. She would even have begun to prepare her compatriots for escape from the euro. ..."
"... A "color revolution" was ready to be stirred up. The deep state is vigilant in NATOland. ..."
May 24, 2017 | www.unz.com
A ghost of the past was the real winner of the French presidential election. Emmanuel Macron won only because a majority felt they had to vote against the ghost of "fascism" allegedly embodied by his opponent, Marine Le Pen. Whether out of panic or out of the need to feel respectable, the French voted two to one in favor of a man whose program most of them either ignored or disliked. Now they are stuck with him for five years.

If people had voted on the issues, the majority would never have elected a man representing the trans-Atlantic elite totally committed to "globalization", using whatever is left of the power of national governments to weaken them still further, turning over decision-making to "the markets" – that is, to international capital, managed by the major banks and financial institutions, notably those located in the United States, such as Goldman-Sachs.

The significance of this election is so widely misrepresented that clarification requires a fairly thorough explanation, not only of the Macron project, but also of what the (impossible) election of Marine Le Pen would have meant.

From a Two Party to a Single Party System

Despite the multiparty nature of French elections, for the past generation France has been essentially ruled by a two-party system, with government power alternating between the Socialist Party, roughly the equivalent of the U.S. Democratic Party, and a party inherited from the Gaullist tradition which has gone through various name changes before recently settling on calling itself Les Républicains (LR), in obvious imitation of the United States . For decades, there has been nothing "socialist" about the Socialist Party and nothing Gaullist about The Republicans.

In reality, both have adopted neoliberal economic policies, or more precisely, they have followed European Union directives requiring member states to adopt neoliberal economic policies. Especially since the adoption of the common currency, the euro, a little over fifteen years ago, those economic policies have become tangibly harmful to France, hastening its deindustrialization, the ruin of its farmers and the growing indebtedness of the State to private banks.

This has had inevitable political repercussions. The simplest reaction has been widespread reaction against both parties for continuing to pursue the same unpopular policies. The most thoughtful reaction has been to start realizing that it is the European Union itself that imposes this unpopular economic conformism.

To quell growing criticism of the European Union, the well-oiled Macron machine, labeled "En Marche!" has exploited the popular reaction against both governing parties. It has broken and absorbed large parts of both, in an obvious move to turn En Marche! into a single catch-all party loyal to Macron.

The destruction of the Socialist Party was easy. Since the "Socialist" government was so unpopular that it could not hope to win, it was easy to lure prominent members of that party to jump the sinking ship and rally to Macron, who had been economics minister in that unpopular government, but who was advertised by all the media as "new" and "anti-system".

Weakening the Republicans was trickier. Thanks to the deep unpopularity of the outgoing Socialist government, the Republican candidate, François Fillon, looked like a shoo-in. But despite his pro-business economic policies, Fillon still cared about preserving France, and favored an independent foreign policy including good Canard Enchainé to be revealed at a critical moment in the campaign. The uproar drowned out the issues. To an electorate already wary of "establishment politicians", these revelations were fatal. The impression that "politicians are all corrupt" played into the hands of Emmanuel Macron, too young to have done anything worse than make a few quick millions during his passage through the Rothschild Bank, and there's nothing illegal about that.

In France, the presidential election is followed by parliamentary elections, which normally give a majority to the party of the newly elected president. But Macron had no party, so he is creating one for the occasion, made up of defectors from the major defeated parties as well as his own innovation, candidates from "civil society", with no political experience, but loyal to him personally. These "civil society" newcomers tend to be successful individuals, winners in the game of globalized competition, who will have no trouble voting for anti-labor measures. Macron is thus confirming Marine Le Pen's longstanding assertion that the two main parties were really one big single party, whose rhetorical differences masked their political convergence.

The Macron victory demoralized Republicans. Weakening them further, Macron named a Republican, Edouard Philippe, as his Prime Minister, in a government with four Socialist and two Republican, alongside his own selections from "civil society".

Transforming France

Macron won in part because older voters in particular were frightened by his opponents' hints at leaving the European Union, which they have been indoctrinated to consider necessary to prevent renewal of Europe's old wars. But only the hysterical anti-fascist scare can explain why self-styled leftist "revolutionaries" such as François Ruffin, known for his successful anti-capitalist movie "Merci Patron", could join the stampede to vote for Macron – promising to "oppose him later". But how?

Later, after five years of Macron, opposition may be harder than ever. In recent decades, as manufacturing moves to low wage countries, including EU members such as Poland and Rumania, France has lost 40% of its industry. Loss of industry means loss of jobs and fewer workers. When industry is no longer essential, workers have lost their key power: striking to shut down industry. Currently the desperate workers in a failing auto-works factory in central France are threatening to blow it up unless the government takes measures to save their jobs. But violence is powerless when it has no price tag.

Emmanuel Macron has said that he wants to spend only a short time in political life, before getting back to business. He has a mission, and he is in a hurry. If he gains an absolute majority in the June parliamentary elections, he has a free hand to govern for five years. He means to use this period not to "reform" the country, as his predecessors put it, but to "transform" France into a different sort of country. If he has his way, in five years France will no longer be a sovereign nation, but a reliable region in a federalized European Union, following a rigorous economic policy made in Germany by bankers and a bellicose foreign policy made in Washington by neocons.

As usual, the newly elected French president's first move was to rush to Berlin to assert loyalty to the increasingly lopsided "Franco-German partnership". He was most warmly welcomed by Chancellor Angela Merkel, thanks to his clear determination to force through the austerity measures demanded by the Frankfurt budget masters. Macron hopes that his fiscal obedience will be rewarded by German consent to a European investment fund for stimulating economic growth, but this implies a degree of federalism that the pfennig-pinching Germans show little sign of accepting.

First of all, he has promised to complete the dismantling of the French labor code, which offers various protections to workers. This should save money for employers and the government. For Macron, the ruin of French industry and French farming seem to be welcome steps toward an economy of individual initiative, symbolized by startups.

The Macron program amounts to a profound ideological transformation of the French ideal of égalité , equality, from a horizontal concept, meaning equal benefits for all, to the vertical ideal of "equality of opportunity", meaning the theoretical chance of every individual to rise above the others. This is an ideal easily accepted in the United States with its longstanding myth of the self-made man. The French have traditionally been logical enough to understand that everyone can't rise above the others.

Horizontal equality in France has primarily meant institutional redistribution of wealth via universal access to benefits such as health care, pensions, communications and transportation facilities, allocations for families raising children, unemployment insurance, free education at all levels. These are the benefits that are under threat from the European Union in various ways. One way is the imposition of "competition" rules that impose privatization and favor foreign takeovers that transform public services into profit-seekers. Another is the imposition of public budget restrictions, along with the obligation of the State to seek private loans, increasing its debt, and the loss of tax revenue that all end up up making the State too poor to continue providing such services.

Very few French people would want to give up such horizontal equality for the privilege of hoping to become a billionaire.

Macron is sufficiently Americanized, or, to be more precise, globalized, to have declared that "there is no such thing as French culture". From this viewpoint, France is just a place open to diverse cultures, as well as to immigrants and of course foreign capital. He has clearly signaled his rejection of French independence in the foreign policy field. Unlike his leading rivals, who all called for improved relations with Russia, Macron echoes the Russophobic line of the neocons. He broke tradition on his inauguration by riding down the Champs-Elysées in a military vehicle. A change of tone is indicated by his cabinet nominations. The title of the new foreign minister, Jean-Yves Le Drian, who served as defense minister in the Hollande government, is "Minister of Europe and of Foreign Affairs", clearly giving Europe preference in the matter. Sylvie Goulard, an ardent Europeist who has remarked that "she does not feel French", has been named Minister of Armies and Minister of Defense. Clearly national defense is an afterthought, when the main idea is to deploy the armed forces in various joint Western interventions.

The Divided Opposition

Unless the June parliamentary elections produce stunning surprises, the opposition to Macron's catch-all governance party appears weak and fatally divided. The Socialist Party is almost wiped out. The Republicans are profoundly destabilized. Genuine opposition to the Macron regime can only be based on defense of French interests against EU economic dictates, starting with the euro, which prevents the country from pursuing an independent economic and foreign policy. In short, the genuine opposition must be " souverainiste ", concerned with preserving French sovereignty.

Two strong personalities emerged from the presidential election as potential leaders of that opposition: Jean-Luc Mélenchon and Marine Le Pen. But they are drastically divided.

Mélenchon ran a spectacularly popular campaign, leaving the Socialist Party far behind (the party he personally left behind years ago). Initially, as he seemed to be taking votes away from Le Pen as well as from the Socialists, he got friendly media coverage, but as he came closer to making it to the decisive second round, the tone started to change. Just as Le Pen was finally knocked out as a "fascist", there is little doubt that had Mélenchon been Macron's challenger, he would have been increasingly denounced as "communist".

Mélenchon is intelligent enough to have realized that the social policies he advocates cannot be achieved unless France recovers control of its currency. He therefore took a stand against both NATO and the euro. So did Marine Le Pen. Mélenchon was embarrassed by the resemblance between their two programs, and contrary to other eliminated candidates, refrained from endorsing Macron, instead calling on his movement, La France Insoumise , to choose between Macron and abstention. Finally, 25% of Mélenchon voters abstained in the second round, but 62% voted for Macron – almost exclusively motivated by the alleged need to "stop fascism". That compares with the final total results of 66% for Macron and 34 % for Le Pen.

That vote confirmed the impossibility of forming a unified souverainiste opposition and allows Marine Le Pen to strengthen her claim to be the leader of a genuine opposition to Macron. She has admitted her own mistakes in the campaign, particularly in her debate with Macron, who beat her hands down with his arrogant performance as the economic expert. But despite her mere 34%, she retains the most loyal base of supporters in a changing scene. The problem for Mélenchon is that his electorate is more versatile.

Despite his loud appeal to "youth", Macron was elected by France's huge population of old people. Among voters over 65, he won 80% against 20% for Le Pen. Marine Le Pen did best with the youngest age group, 18 to 24, winning 44% against Macron's 56%. [1] According to poll of 7,752 representative voters by Le Figaro/LCI,

The differences were also significant between socio-professional categories. Macron won a whopping 83% of the votes coming from the "superior socio-professional categories" – categories where the "winners" in competitive society are largely ensconced. But in what are described as " categories populaires ", a French term for ordinary folk, with less education, the vote was 53% in favor of Le Pen. And she confirmed her position as favorite candidate of the working class, winning 63% of workers' votes.

Note that the "superior socio-professional categories" are where the significance of these results will be defined. Individuals from that category – journalists, commentators and show business personalities – are all in a position to spread the word that this vote indicates that the workers must be "racist", and therefore that we have narrowly escaped being taken over by "fascism".

One of the many odd things about the latest French presidential election is the rejoicing among foreign "leftists" over the fact that the candidate of the rich roundly defeated the candidate of the poor. It used to be the other way around, but that was long ago. These days, the winners in the competitive game comfort themselves that they morally deserve their success, because they are in favor of diversity and against racism, whereas the less fortunate, the rural people and the working class, don't deserve much of anything, because they must be "racist" to be wary of globalization.

The fact that Paris voted 90% for Macron is natural, considering that real estate prices have pushed the working class out of the capital, whose population is now overwhelmingly what is called "bobo" – the bohemian bourgeoisie, many of whom are employed in various branches of the dominant human rights ideology fabrication business: journalists, professors, teachers, consultants, the entertainment industry. In these milieux, hardly anyone would even dare speak a positive word about Marine Le Pen.

What if Marine Le Pen had won?

Since politics is largely fantasy, we may as well try to imagine the unimaginable: what if Marine Le Pen had won the election? This was never a realistic possibility, but it is worth imagining.

It could have had one, perhaps only one, extremely positive result: it could have freed France from its paralyzing obsession with the nonexistent "fascist threat". The ghost would be exorcised. If the word has any meaning, "fascism" implies single party rule, whereas Marine Le Pen made clear her desire to govern by coalition, and selected the leader of a small Gaullist party, Nicolas Dupont-Aignan, as her prospective prime minister. Poof! No fascism. That would have been an immeasurable benefit for political debate in France. At last genuine issues might matter. Real threats could be confronted.

Another advantage would have been the demise of the National Front. Since Marine Le Pen took over the notorious party founded by her reactionary father, it has kept a precarious balance between two opposing wings. There is the right wing in the southeast, along the Riviera, the bastion of the party's founder, Jean-Marie Le Pen, a region represented in the outgoing parliament by his conservative granddaughter Marion Maréchal Le Pen. In the old industrial northeast region, between Arras and Lille, Marine Le Pen has built her own bastion, as champion of ordinary working people, where she won a majority of votes in the presidential election.

This is not the only time in history when an heiress has gone away with the heritage to join someone of whom her father disapproves. All those who want to cling to their comforting hatred of the left's official Satan have trouble believing that Marine Le Pen broke with her reactionary father to go her own way (just as U.S. hawks couldn't believe in Gorbachev). This change owes everything to her encounter with Florian Philippot, an intellectual who gave up on the ability of the Socialists to face the real issues. Marine has the personal qualities of a leader, and Philippot provided the intellectual substance she needed. Marine has decisively chosen Philippot as her advisor and co-leader, despite grumblings by Jean-Marie that she has been led astray by a gay Marxist. Had Marine won, her left wing would have been strengthened enough to enable her and Philippot to scrap the National Front and found a new "Patriot Party". However, by scoring below 40%, she has weakened her authority and must try to hold the troublesome party together in order to win seats in the new parliament – which will not be easy.

Marine Le Pen would have tried to enact measures to save French industry and the jobs it provides, provide various benefits for low-income people, withdraw from NATO, and even promote a peaceful world, starting with friendly relations with Russia. She would even have begun to prepare her compatriots for escape from the euro.

But not to worry, none of this "fascist" program would ever have come to pass. If she had won, bands of protesting "antifascists" would have invaded the streets, smashing windows and attacking police. The outgoing Socialist government was preparing to use the resulting chaos as a pretext to stay in power long enough to manage the parliamentary elections, [2] "Si Le Pen avait été élue le plan secret pour 'protéger la République'", Le Nouvel Observateur, May 17, 2017 , ensuring that President Marine Le Pen would be held in check. A "color revolution" was ready to be stirred up. The deep state is vigilant in NATOland.

Diana Johnstone is co-author of " From MAD to Madness: Inside Pentagon Nuclear War Planning ", by Paul H. Johnstone, her father. She can be reached at diana.johnstone@wanadoo.fr

[May 24, 2017] JFK Murder Plot Deathbed Confession Aired On National Radio

Notable quotes:
"... Paul Joseph Watson ..."
"... (With thanks to additional reporting by David Collins) ..."
May 24, 2017 | www.prisonplanet.com
JFK Murder Plot "Deathbed Confession" Aired On National Radio
Former CIA agent, Watergate conspirator E. Howard Hunt names the men who killed Kennedy

Paul Joseph Watson
Prison Planet
Monday, April 30, 2007 The "deathbed confession" audio tape in which former CIA agent and Watergate conspirator E. Howard Hunt admits he was approached to be part of a CIA assassination team to kill JFK was aired this weekend - an astounding development that has gone completely ignored by the establishment media.

Saint John Hunt, son of E. Howard Hunt, appeared on the nationally syndicated Coast to Coast Live radio show on Saturday night to discuss the revelations contained in the tape.

Hunt said that his father had mailed cassette the tape to him alone in January 2004 and asked that it be released after his death. The tape was originally 20 minutes long but was edited down to four and a half minutes for the Coast to Coast broadcast. Hunt promises that the whole tape will be uploaded soon at his website .

Click here to listen to a clip of the tape.

E. Howard Hunt names numerous individuals with both direct and indirect CIA connections as having played a role in the assassination of Kennedy, while describing himself as a "bench warmer" in the plot. Saint John Hunt agreed that the use of this term indicates that Hunt was willing to play a larger role in the murder conspiracy had he been required.

Hunt alleges on the tape that then Vice President Lyndon B. Johnson was involved in the planning of the assassination and in the cover-up, stating that LBJ, "Had an almost maniacal urge to become president, he regarded JFK as an obstacle to achieving that."

Asked if his father followed the conspiracy theories into the Kennedy assassination, Saint John said the elder Hunt did follow the work of AJ Weberman, a New York freelance writer, who in the early 70's first accused Hunt of being one of three bums who were arrested in Dealy Plaza. The so-called bums (pictured above) were interrogated and later released by authorities shortly after the assassination. Weberman, one of the founders of the Youth International Party, the Vippies, published photographs of the tramps and found that two of them bore striking similarities to Hunt and Frank Sturgis , also named by Hunt in the tape as having been played a role in the assassination conspiracy.

Asked for his opinion as to whether his father was indeed one of the Dealy Plaza tramps, Saint John, in a stunning revelation, said one of the tramps indeed looked much like his father did in 1963 (see comparison above).

CIA operative Frank Stugis' striking resemblance to one of the "tramps".

Other researchers believe the "Hunt tramp" to really be Chauncey Holt, who apparently later confessed to the fact. Charles Harrelson was allegedly identified as the third tramp.

Saint John Hunt said that shortly before his death, his father had felt "deeply conflicted and deeply remorseful" that he didn't blow the whistle on the plot at the time and prevent the assassination, but that everyone in the government hated Kennedy and wanted him gone in one way or another. Kennedy's promise to "shatter the CIA into a thousand pieces and scatter the remnants to the wind" was being carried out and this infuriated almost everyone at the agency.

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Hunt also said that his mother's death in a December 8, 1972 plane crash in Chicago was suspicious and that there was evidence of a White House cover-up surrounding the circumstances of the alleged accident.

Investigators discovered $10,000 dollars in her luggage and Hunt alleged that his mother traveled around the country using Nixon campaign money to payoff the families of the Watergate burglars to keep them quiet about the involvement of the Nixon White House in the Watergate break-in and cover-up.

Hunt cited numerous coincidences surrounding the aftermath of the crash, including Nixon's appointment of his henchman, Egil Krough, to the National Transportation Safety Board which investigates plane crashes, the very day after the incident.

Eyewitnesses reported that the plane exploded above treetop level before it had even hit the runway.

Hunt said that "at least 20-25 FBI members," as well as numerous DIA agents were at the scene of the crash within minutes before rescue personnel had even arrived, and that this fact was attested to in a letter sent by the head of the Chicago FBI to investigator Sherman Skolnick.

Hunt said that his safety was guaranteed by the dissemination of the tape and that he had several copies and had mailed others to addresses both abroad and in the U.S.

"Once this information is out there's really no point in anyone trying to do me in or do me wrong - someone may try to discredit me but I have no skeletons in my closet," said Hunt.

As we have previously reported, the night before the Kennedy assassination, Lyndon Baines Johnson met with Dallas tycoons, FBI moguls and organized crime kingpins - emerging from the conference to tell his mistress Madeleine Duncan Brown that "those SOB's" would never embarrass him again.

Though Brown first went public on her 21-year relationship with Johnson in the early 80's, to this day her shocking revelations about how he had told her the Kennedy's "would never embarrass me again" the night before the assassination are often ignored by the media who prefer to keep the debate focused on issues which can't definitively be proven either way (or at least can be spun and whitewashed).


George Herbert Walker Bush was also pictured at the scene of the crime in Dealy Plaza.

In addition, Barr McClellan, father of former White House press secretary Scott McClellan and a partner in the Austin law firm that represented Johnson, wrote in his 2003 book that LBJ was a key player in the organization of the assassination and its cover-up. McClellan's revelations were the subject of a subsequent History Channel documentary called The Guilty Men .

(With thanks to additional reporting by David Collins)

[May 24, 2017] Can Trump Salvage His Presidency in Syria's War by Shamus Cooke

May 24, 2017 | www.counterpunch.org
The political noose is tightening around Trump's neck, and he's got only one way out: war. The U.S. involvement in the Syrian war is accelerating as Trump's talons dig deeper into the conflict. If he successfully clutches his prey he stands a chance of clinging to the presidency.

The Democrats, now circling a wounded Trump, will happily feast instead on a rotting Syria: the only thing that can keep the Democrats from destroying Trump is if Trump destroys Syria.

Trump's strategy is based on how Democrats reacted after his first attack on the Syrian government onApril 6th: they paused their toothless "resistance" to celebrate his bombing. Trump, at his most dangerous, exposed the Democrats at their weakest.

Now Trump has struck the Syrian government again: on May 18th U.S. fighter jets attacked the Syrian military in Eastern Syria, from a new U.S. military base functioning inside Syrian territory controlled by the Syrian Kurds, where there are at least 1,000 U.S. active troops.

Although the U.S. media underplayed Trump's recent attack -- or ignored it completely - legendary U.K. Middle East journalist Robert Fiskexplained the significance:

" what was described by the Americans as a minor action was part of a far more important struggle between the US and the Syrian regime for control of the south-eastern frontier of Syria "

Yes, the U.S. is already at war with the Syrian government for control of Syrian territory. The U.S. war on ISIS in Syria was never about ISIS, but about gaining a foothold directly inside Syria. Many pundits dismissed Trump's initial attack on the Syrian government as "symbolic," when in fact it began a new war. The New York Times confirms the motive of Trump's war:

"Two competing coalitions that aim to defeat the Islamic State - one [Kurdish and U.S. fighters] backed by American air power, the other [the Syrian government] by Russian warplanes - are racing to the same goal."

What is this goal?

" [there is an] urgency among the competing coalitions fighting the Islamic State to be the first in southeast Syria to defeat the group [ISIS] and to occupy the power vacuum that its defeat would leave .Eastern Syria and the area around Deir al-Zour are mostly unpopulated desert, but they have Syria's modest oil reserves The area is strategically important to the United States, which wants to stabilize Iraq where it has a long-term military and political investment, and to Russia, which wants to strengthen the Syrian government's control of as much territory as possible."

In summary: the U.S. military wants to "occupy" the "power vacuum" left by ISIS, because Syrian territory is "strategically important" to the United States.

The war isn't about ISIS because the U.S. military isn't needed to defeat ISIS in Syria, since the group was doomed the day that Turkey decided to close ranks against them - by sealing their border with Syria - instead of openly supporting them as they had for several years.

Consequently, the Syrian government - with Russian and Iranian support - has no problem mopping up ISIS in Syria, and they're racing to do it first before the U.S.-Kurdish alliance claims the territory for itself.

Establishment Democrats are cheer-leadingTrump's war goals in private, which is why they're not denouncing them in public. The Democrat-friendly New York Times published a revealing op-ed entitled" A Trump Doctrine for the Middle East ?" In it the writer applauds Trump's war aims:

"Despite the controversies at home, Mr. Trump may come away with a legacy-cementing achievement: a Trump Doctrine for the Middle East it is false that American 'soft power' is the key to stabilizing the [middle east] region. Our ideals, such as promoting democracy, will work to our advantage only if we first restore order - a project that rests on American hard power [military intervention]. What's more, the use of force is not inherently counterproductive "

The article explains that Obama's "soft power" (the Syrian proxy war) failed and that Trump aims to "restore order" with "hard power" (direct military intervention).As Trump's bombs fall heavier Democrats will scramble to support a wider war that, crazily, increasingly threatens direct confrontation with Russia. The Russian government loudly denounced Trump's most recent bombing against the Syrian government, and sent more Russian troops to the region in response.

The U.S. war against ISIS in Syria has always been a pretext to undermine the Syrian and Iranian governments. Robert Fisk explains:

"Cutting Syria off from Iraq – and thus from Iran – appears to be a far more immediate operational aim of US forces in Syria than the elimination of the [ISIS] Sunni 'Caliphate' cult that Washington claims to be its principal enemy in the Middle East."

How might this "race to defeat ISIS" end? Trump's ominous trip to Saudi Arabia gives some insight into the Trump Doctrine. Trump made an enormous arms deal with Saudi Arabia worth $350 billion over 10 years, and wants the Saudis to use the money to co-lead an "Arab NATO" [military alliance]. Who will this alliance be aimed against? The Trump administration made it known that Iran was the main target, and thus Syria is the appetizer.

In a separate article Robert Fisk discussed Trump's Saudi visit:

"The aim, however, is simple: to prepare the Sunni Muslims [the gulf monarchy U.S. allies and others] of the Middle East for war against the Shia Muslims [Iran, Syria, Hezbollah]. With help from Israel, of course."

This is the real reason Trump prioritized Saudi Arabia as the always-important first stop on his initial trip abroad: Trump is clearly stating his commitment to the totalitarian monarchies, who main priorities are the destruction of its regional enemies: Yemen, Syria, and Iran.

This "Arab NATO" is meant to act as a U.S. puppet army in the way that 'official' NATO does in Europe, and the African Union's "Standby Force" does in Africa, where U.S. allies share the responsibility of repressing neighbor states who defy U.S. interests, i.e. they refuse to abandon their political-economic self determination.

A U.S.-led "Arab NATO" wasn't previously impossible because the U.S. is universally hated across the Middle East, for its longstanding alliance with Israel combined with its recent annihilation of Afghanistan, Iraq, and Libya. The openness in which the Gulf monarchies are trying to form this alliance shows just how distanced from and hated by their own residents, who are prevented from expressing their hatred through elections or public protest.

The Trump-led alliance is especially foreboding because U.S. allies in the region feel deeply betrayed by Obama's Middle East approach; they want concrete assurances the betrayal won't be repeated, since U.S. allies risked a lot in regime change in Syria after Obama ensured them that regime change would be a safe bet. Trump's visit means, in practice, a fresh commitment to Assad's downfall and renewed hostilities with Iran, nuclear deal be damned.

Trump's current war strategy in Syria is similar to President Bush Sr.'s experiment in Iraq after the 1991 Gulf War: he used a no-fly zone in Kurdish-majority northern Iraq that de-facto partitioned the country, allowing the Kurds to take power where they remain in power today, as an important U.S. puppet. The partitioning of Iraq helped weaken the country prior to the 2003 U.S. invasion.

The Syrian Kurds are now being armed with U.S. weaponry and given similar promises as their Iraqi counterparts received, but the Syrian Kurds are rightfully nervous about their new alliance.

In their desperate fight against ISIS the Kurds have accepted an alliance with the world's military superpower: the Kurdish homeland is infested with rats and they invited a tiger to deal with the problem; but once the rats are dead the tiger will stay hungry. The Kurds also live next to another starving Tiger, the Turkish Government.

The history of the Kurds is one of constant betrayals by larger powers. And now they are pleading on the pages of The New York Times not to be betrayed again, since they see the writing on the wall:

" [President Trump] give us your word that evenafter Raqqa's liberation [in Syria] you will prevent attempts by Turkey to destroy what we've built here."

Of course Trump's "word" is meaningless (and even this he won't give publicly). The Kurds are being used as battlefield pawns in a greater game. As Trump aligns with the Kurds in Syria, he simultaneously calls the Turkish Kurds "terrorists," even though the Turkish and Syrian Kurds are closely aligned ideologically and militarily.

Like all "boots on the ground," the Kurds are most useful to the U.S. as cannon fodder, while more powerful people profit from the fighting. The political power of the Kurds pales in comparison to their enemy Turkey, whose government has long-term interests (the destruction of the Kurds) that will outlast the short-term military objectives Trump.

The above contradictions are sharpening across the Middle East, nearing the point of yet another explosion. The Trump Doctrine is a flamethrower at a gas station that can instantly spark an even greater conflagration, beyond the horrors we've already witnessed across the Middle East. If the Trump resistance movement in the United States doesn't quickly prioritize a real anti war strategy, there will be little resistance left to speak of as we descend into war.

[May 24, 2017] Rosenstein and Mueller the Regime Change Tag-Team by Mike Whitney

That's all nice but the truth is that Trump abandoned his agenda in Artly April, a month before appointment of Special Council. Also the intercity of russian wittch hunt was such that appointment of a special council was kind of inveitable. Trigger might be different, but the net result is the same.
The idea that both Rod Rosenstein and Robert Mueller belong to the same team is plausible. Mueller is also a close friend of Comey. But as Trump flded what would be the gain from his removal ?
Notable quotes:
"... And, yes, I know, people are going to swarm to Rosenstein's defense and say, "Yeah, but, Trump is a bloviating buffoon and a mentally-unstable despot." And, they're right, too, the man is a menace, a narcissist and maybe even a crackpot. Just look at the Saudi arms deal where Trump agreed to provide hundreds of billions of dollars of weapons to a fanatical government that will undoubtedly use them to arm its jihadist army in Syria or kill women and children in Yemen. It just shows that Trump is a vicious, unprincipled militarist. But that doesn't change what Rosenstein did. People need to look beyond Trump's failings to appreciate what type of man we're dealing with here. Rosenstein is a duplicitous back-stabbing serpent. End of story. ..."
"... By appointing a Special Counsel, Rosenstein not only destroyed any chance Trump had at achieving his policy objectives, he also effectively rolled-back the results of the 2016 presidential election. ..."
"... We can now be 100 percent certain that Trump's political agenda will never get off the ground. His tax plan, his infrastructure plan, his health care plan; all of them have gone up in smoke thanks to Rosenstein. Which is good, right, since the Trump's "pamper the rich and screw-the-working-man" plan was crappy policy anyway? So, good riddance. ..."
"... And Rosenstein didn't pick hatchetman Robert Mueller by himself either. That's more malarkey. Mueller was picked by the same shadowy throng of elites that selected the 9-11 Commission, the big money guys who own this fecking country lock, stock and barrel. ..."
"... "Robert Mueller, picked as special prosecutor to investigate President Donald Trump, violated the US Constitution as FBI Director by using secret domestic spy programs, National Security Agency (NSA) whistleblower William Binney told Sputnik. ..."
"... "My problem with Mueller is that he agreed with and used the Stellar Wind spying program at NSA against common crime since 2001," Binney said Wednesday. "He admitted to this in a 2011 interview with [Time magazine correspondent] Bart Gellman." ..."
"... Binney said that Mueller's willingness to use secret espionage surveillance techniques designed only for national security functions against suspects in regular criminal investigations revealed his willingness to ignore or break safeguards in the US Constitution. ..."
"... Repeat: He used "secret espionage surveillance techniques designed only for national security functions against suspects in regular criminal investigations." ..."
"... What Aaronson discovered was that, far from preventing terrorism, the FBI uses its funds to "manufacture" terrorists out of marginalized, desperate, mentally ill or immature men (many of the convicted individuals profiled are in their early twenties). In Aaronson's words, "The FBI has been effective at creating the very enemy it is hunting." . ..."
"... And the man who oversaw these operations, Robert Mueller, is the same guy the media has been praising as the embodiment of integrity and moral rectitude. Give me a break. Mueller knew these operations were a hoax, he had to know. The FBI was working a sting to lure hard-luck dimwits into doing things they'd never normally dream of doing. It's called entrapment, which is exactly what it is. ..."
"... So what are the odds that Trump will get a fair shake in this deal? How about zero? There's zero chance that Grand Inquisitor Mueller and his Star Chamber assistants are going to conduct an objective, independent investigation. In fact, the whole Special Counsel meme is just an attempt to dignify the railroading of the Chief Executive. There's not much more to it than that. They need these sham legal proceedings to create the impression that the final outcome hasn't already been decided. But it has already been decided. Trump's going to be driven from office and there's not a damn thing he can do about it. The die has been cast, and Trump came up snake-eyes. ..."
www.breitbart.com
Let's say you own a big US corporation but need help managing your domestic accounts. So you hire a bright, young man named Bruno who just graduated from Harvard Business School with a Masters in corporate finance. And the first day on the job, you discover that Bruno has secretly employed a private detective who has obtained subpoena power to dig through all of your business accounts, all your investments past and present, all your taxes going back decades, and any personal transactions you might have made in the last 20 years or so. And, oh yeah, and he also has the authority to interview anyone he chooses, including people who might have a grudge against you or who lost money on one of your dodgy real estate deals or who simply doesn't like the way you comb your hair. And, of course, Bruno knows that the information he gathers is going to be deliberately tweaked to look as suspicious as possible, then it's going to be leaked to the press and splashed across the headlines, then it's going to be presented as evidence to a Grand Jury, and then, finally – after months of excruciating testimony and nonstop mud-slinging– it will be used in criminal proceedings that will lead your removal as CEO of your corporation.

How would you feel about that? Would you feel like your new employee had betrayed you? Would you think that Bruno was a back-stabbing scoundrel who was secretly working for your enemies?

Rod Rosenstein is Bruno. The man is a skunk, there's no two-ways about it.

And, yes, I know, people are going to swarm to Rosenstein's defense and say, "Yeah, but, Trump is a bloviating buffoon and a mentally-unstable despot." And, they're right, too, the man is a menace, a narcissist and maybe even a crackpot. Just look at the Saudi arms deal where Trump agreed to provide hundreds of billions of dollars of weapons to a fanatical government that will undoubtedly use them to arm its jihadist army in Syria or kill women and children in Yemen. It just shows that Trump is a vicious, unprincipled militarist. But that doesn't change what Rosenstein did. People need to look beyond Trump's failings to appreciate what type of man we're dealing with here. Rosenstein is a duplicitous back-stabbing serpent. End of story.

When a president makes an appointment, like Deputy Attorney General, the assumption is that the appointee is going to play for the home team. That doesn't mean that Rosenstein was expected to do anything dishonest or illegal. Not at all. He was simply expected to be moderately loyal and defend the administration against politically-motivated attacks. That's it. But that was too much for Rosenstein whose first big decision as Deputy AG was to pull the rug out from under his boss, betray his team, and sabotage the administration's entire political agenda. He blew up the whole damn operation with one sweep of the hand. Kaboom.

By appointing a Special Counsel, Rosenstein not only destroyed any chance Trump had at achieving his policy objectives, he also effectively rolled-back the results of the 2016 presidential election.

Not bad for a day's work, eh?

We can now be 100 percent certain that Trump's political agenda will never get off the ground. His tax plan, his infrastructure plan, his health care plan; all of them have gone up in smoke thanks to Rosenstein. Which is good, right, since the Trump's "pamper the rich and screw-the-working-man" plan was crappy policy anyway? So, good riddance.

But was that Rosenstein's decision to make? Is that how democracy is supposed to work? Does one unelected, meddlesome lawyer at the DOJ get to overturn the results of the election and bring the government to a screeching halt?

No. That's not how the system is supposed to work. The president is supposed to set the agenda because, well, because he's the president and that's what the people voted for. It's called democracy. But Rosenstein doesn't like democracy, he'd rather do the work of his paymasters who want to see Trump drawn and quartered before he's given the boot.

"His paymasters"? Rosenstein has paymasters?

Yer darn right, he does. Rosenstein didn't make the decision to appoint a Special Counsel by himself. That's baloney. He got his marching orders from someone else higher up the foodchain. That's obvious. Does anyone seriously believe that a second-string attorney at the Justice Department would launch a full-blown attack on the president of the United States unless he got the greenlight from the deep-state fatcats who operate behind the scenes?

No way. If the big boys weren't on board, the media would have blown Rosenstein out of the water 5 minutes after he made the announcement. As it stands, the witchhunt is going forward without a shred of solid evidence, without any eyewitnesses, without a hint of wrongdoing, and without any probable cause. It's like a novel by Franz Kafka only everyone already knows how it ends.

And Rosenstein didn't pick hatchetman Robert Mueller by himself either. That's more malarkey. Mueller was picked by the same shadowy throng of elites that selected the 9-11 Commission, the big money guys who own this fecking country lock, stock and barrel. In this case, they wanted a political assassin who could be trusted to do everything in his power to force Trump to resign. Mueller was the perfect man for the job, a cold-blooded Mafia hitman who won't leave his fingerprints at the scene of the crime. In his more than 10-year stint at the FBI, Mueller managed to conceal his utter contempt for the law behind a mask of smug sincerity and icy self-righteousness. His qualifications speak for themselves. Here's a little background on Mueller from Sputnik News:

"Robert Mueller, picked as special prosecutor to investigate President Donald Trump, violated the US Constitution as FBI Director by using secret domestic spy programs, National Security Agency (NSA) whistleblower William Binney told Sputnik.

"My problem with Mueller is that he agreed with and used the Stellar Wind spying program at NSA against common crime since 2001," Binney said Wednesday. "He admitted to this in a 2011 interview with [Time magazine correspondent] Bart Gellman."

Binney said that Mueller's willingness to use secret espionage surveillance techniques designed only for national security functions against suspects in regular criminal investigations revealed his willingness to ignore or break safeguards in the US Constitution.

"This means he [Mueller] did not live up to his oath of office to protect and defend the Constitution against foreign and domestic threats. So, he clearly has a selective view of how you apply the Constitution," Binney explained

James Comey, Mueller's successor as FBI Director, who was fired by Trump on May 9 had also been willing to ignore the US Constitution in order to use NSA data collected without any legal warrant against ordinary criminals, Binney recalled." ("Special Counsel for Russia Probe Violated Constitution – NSA Whistleblower", Sputnik)

Repeat: He used "secret espionage surveillance techniques designed only for national security functions against suspects in regular criminal investigations."

Nice. So instead of dogging-down the crooked bankers on Wall Street who blew up the financial system and fleeced We The People out of trillions of dollars, Mueller spent his time stomping on the Forth Amendment so he could add a few more warm bodies to our ballooning prison population. Way to go, Bob.

And there's more about Mueller that people should know, too, like the fact that he was the architect of an FBI entrapment program that lured simple-minded gangbangers into terrorist scams and then threw them in the slammer for the rest of their lives. Check out this blurb from an article at Electronic Intifada titled "The FBI's penchant for "manufacturing terrorists":

"What the FBI was doing before, during and after the financial crisis is the subject under examination in Trevor Aaronson's new book The Terror Factory: Inside the FBI's Manufactured War on Terrorism. The book unveils the FBI's domestic counterterrorism program that began after the 11 September attacks and has continued well into Barack Obama's second term in office. The program, vividly portrayed by Aaronson, is defined by a wanton use of informants and sting operations in order to produce a high rate of convictions

Since the 11 September attacks, the FBI has employed more than 15,000 confidential informants nationwide. And, according to Aaronson, for each official informant there are as many as three unofficial informants - known within the FBI as "hip pockets." By 2011, the Justice Department had prosecuted more than 500 individuals on terrorist charges, a handful of whom Aaronson categorizes as "actual terrorists." The rest were hatched within the context of FBI sting operations, informants and agents provocateur ..

What Aaronson discovered was that, far from preventing terrorism, the FBI uses its funds to "manufacture" terrorists out of marginalized, desperate, mentally ill or immature men (many of the convicted individuals profiled are in their early twenties). In Aaronson's words, "The FBI has been effective at creating the very enemy it is hunting." .

Taking his readers through several FBI sting operations, Aaronson reveals a sordid practice in which the FBI often employs criminals to infiltrate Muslim communities to turn otherwise powerless malcontents into "terrorists." According to Aaronson's accounts, these so-called terrorists would have no more than the capability to mouth off in a chat room if it weren't for the inert weapons and cash that informants would literally place in their hapless hands, thus creating "bogeymen from buffoons."

Aaronson's book is a powerful portrait of the FBI's insidious and destructive counterterrorism program that enables the contortion of the innocuous into the threatening, ruining hundreds of lives in its wake."

("FBI's penchant for "manufacturing terrorists" probed in new book" by Trevor Aaronson, Charlotte Silver, Electronic Intifada)

So this is what Mueller and his FBI pals were up to before Comey arrived on the scene?

Apparently so. They were devoting a considerable amount of time and resources to operations that framed hapless dupes and patsies as dangerous terrorists threatening our precious national security.

And the man who oversaw these operations, Robert Mueller, is the same guy the media has been praising as the embodiment of integrity and moral rectitude. Give me a break. Mueller knew these operations were a hoax, he had to know. The FBI was working a sting to lure hard-luck dimwits into doing things they'd never normally dream of doing. It's called entrapment, which is exactly what it is. What the FBI was doing is no different than coaxing a hungry dog into a steelcage with a T-Bone steak. The Bureau calls the practice "counter-terrorism". Anyone in their right mind would call it "Baloney".

This is why the bigshots chose Mueller to spearhead their Russia hacking witchhunt. They figure his experience with entrapment will help him to bag his biggest trophy yet, the President of the United States, Donald J. Trump. That's the plan at least.

So what are the odds that Trump will get a fair shake in this deal? How about zero? There's zero chance that Grand Inquisitor Mueller and his Star Chamber assistants are going to conduct an objective, independent investigation. In fact, the whole Special Counsel meme is just an attempt to dignify the railroading of the Chief Executive. There's not much more to it than that. They need these sham legal proceedings to create the impression that the final outcome hasn't already been decided. But it has already been decided. Trump's going to be driven from office and there's not a damn thing he can do about it. The die has been cast, and Trump came up snake-eyes.

Now, it's only a matter of time.

Join the debate on Facebook

MIKE WHITNEY lives in Washington state. He is a contributor to Hopeless: Barack Obama and the Politics of Illusion (AK Press). Hopeless is also available in a Kindle edition . He can be reached at fergiewhitney@msn.com .

[May 23, 2017] Tulsi Gabbard: Citizens United worsened the crisis of dark money influencing our country. We need to get corporate money and lobbyists out of politics.

May 23, 2017 | www.unz.com

L.K , May 23, 2017 at 2:30 am GMT

Tulsi Gabbard‏ on twitter, May 19:

Citizens United worsened the crisis of dark money influencing our country. We need to get corporate money and lobbyists out of politics.

I've decided to stop accepting PAC/lobbyist $$. Bottom line: we can't allow our future to be driven and shaped by special interests.

It always amazes me so few zamericans seem to even discuss these basic themes; with such a completely corrupt political system, there is little chance even a solid, well meaning president could accomplish much.

In fact , such corrupt system hardly produces any good statesmen to begin with

[May 23, 2017] Manafort faced blackmail attempt, hacks suggest - POLITICO

Looks like Ukrainians joined the witch hunt...
May 23, 2017 | www.politico.com

A purported cyberhack of the daughter of political consultant Paul Manafort suggests that he was the victim of a blackmail attempt while he was serving as Donald Trump's presidential campaign chairman last summer.

The undated communications, which are allegedly from the iPhone of Manafort's daughter, include a text that appears to come from a Ukrainian parliamentarian named Serhiy Leshchenko, seeking to reach her father, in which he claims to have politically damaging information about both Manafort and Trump.

Attached to the text is a note to Paul Manafort referring to "bulletproof" evidence related to Manafort's financial arrangement with Ukraine's former president, the pro-Russian strongman Viktor Yanukovych, as well as an alleged 2012 meeting between Trump and a close Yanukovych associate named Serhiy Tulub.

"Considering all the facts and evidence that are in my possession, and before possible decision whether to pass this to [the National Anti-Corruption Bureau of Ukraine] or FBI I would like to get your opinion on this and maybe your way to work things out that will persuade me to do otherwise," reads the note. It is signed "Sergii" - an alternative transliteration of Leshchenko's given name - and it urges Manafort to respond to an email address that reporters have used to reach Leshchenko.

In the typo-ridden text to Manafort's daughter to which the note was attached, the sender writes from a different address, "I need to get in touch with Paul i need to share some important information with him regarding ukraine investigation." The sender adds "as soon as he comes back to me i will pass you documents," but also warns: "if I don't get any reply from you iam gonaa pass it on to the fbi and ukrainian authorities including media."

Leshchenko disavowed the texts in question, telling POLITICO on Tuesday "I've never written any emails or messages to Manafort or his family. I don't know their contact details." He added he said "I have nothing to do with" the email address from which the texts were sent.

And in a Facebook post , he wrote that the "correspondence with Manafort's daughter is obviously fake."

The White House did not respond to a question about whether Trump had met with Tulub, a hunting buddy of Yanukovych's who had served in the government when Yanukovych was prime minister. But a White House official questioned the chronology supporting the claim, explaining that Trump had not worked with Manafort before the 2016 campaign.

In a Tuesday interview, Manafort denied brokering a 2012 meeting between Trump and Tulub and also pointied out that he wasn't working for Trump at the time.

However, Manafort did confirm the authenticity of the texts hacked from his daughter's phone. And he added that, before the texts were sent to his daughter, he had received similar texts to his own phone number from the same address appearing to be affiliated with Leshchenko.

He said he did not respond directly to any of the texts, and instead passed them along to his lawyer. He declined to provide the texts to POLITICO.

The hacked correspondence from his daughter's phone, much of which is unrelated to Paul Manafort's work, appears to have first surfaced a couple of weeks ago in an anonymous post on a so-called darknet website run by a hacktivist collective.

While the post hints in its introductory text that the hacker or hackers have additional information on Manafort, it includes only a handful of screenshots of texts from Manafort's daughter's cellphone, as well as some data files that appear to be related to the texts.

The images began circulating this week in political circles in Kiev and Washington.

The post comes at a time when there's intense interest in the connections between Trump's inner circle and pro-Russian interests. The Federal Bureau of Investigation and congressional committees alike are looking into contacts between Trump's associates - including Manafort - and Russian officials during the presidential campaign , and the U.S. intelligence community has concluded that Russian intelligence engineered cyberattacks on Democratic officials and groups with the intent of boosting Trump's presidential campaign by damaging that of his Democratic rival Hillary Clinton.

The screenshots of hacked texts sent to Manafort's daughter do not include any information indicating the date on which they were sent.

But Manafort said that the first of the texts arrived shortly before The New York Times published an August exposé revealing that the National Anti-Corruption Bureau of Ukraine had obtained documents - which have since come under scrutiny - that appeared to show $12.7 million in cash payments earmarked for Manafort.

Manafort challenged the authenticity of the documents. And, while he said he could not be sure whether the texts apparently referencing them were in fact sent by Leshchenko, he said "I find it coincidental that I got these texts, and then he released these phony journals."

The Times story identified Leshchenko, a former investigative journalist who has built a reputation as an anti-corruption crusader, as a key player in revealing the documents. They appear to be from a ledger maintained by the Party of Regions, which Yanukovych headed. With financing from pro-Russian oligarchs , Manafort and his team helped resurrect Yanukovych's career and get him elected prime minister in 2007 and president in 2010 . But Yanukovych fled Ukraine for Russia under the protection of Russian President Vladimir Putin amid widespread 2013 protests over government corruption.

The documents eventually were provided to the National Anti-Corruption Bureau, a government agency that had signed an evidence-sharing agreement with the FBI in late June - less than a month and a half before it released the ledgers.

The Times reported that the payments earmarked for Manafort were "a focus" of an investigation by Ukrainian anti-corruption officials, while CNN reported days later that the FBI was pursuing an overlapping inquiry.

Leshchenko held a news conference after the stories to highlight the documents, urging Ukrainian and American law enforcement to aggressively investigate Manafort.

"I believe and understand the basis of these payments are totally against the law - we have the proof from these books," Leshchenko said during the news conference, which attracted international media coverage. "If Mr. Manafort denies any allegations, I think he has to be interrogated into this case and prove his position that he was not involved in any misconduct on the territory of Ukraine," Leshchenko added.

Manafort denied receiving any off-the-books cash from Yanukovych's party and said he had never been contacted about the ledger by Ukrainian or American investigators. Nonetheless, the swirling controversy from the ledger reports forced him to step down from Trump's campaign.

Yet, after Trump's surprising victory over Clinton, Ukrainian officials appeared to back away from claims about the ledger and their investigations thereof.

The National Anti-Corruption Bureau of Ukraine told POLITICO in December that a "general investigation" of the ledger was "still ongoing," but it said Manafort was not a target of the investigation. "As he is not the Ukrainian citizen, [the anti-corruption bureau] by the law couldn't investigate him personally," the bureau said in a statement.

Although the bureau is structured as an independent agency, some critics of Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko contend that the ledgers may have been doctored or even forged and were disseminated with Poroshenko's tacit support in an effort to damage Trump.

During the campaign, Ukrainian government officials publicly questioned Trump's fitness for office, and they helped Clinton's allies research damaging information on Trump and his advisers, according to a POLITICO investigation published last month.

Poroshenko and his allies, who are scrambling to establish a relationship with the Trump administration, have distanced themselves from those efforts, and from Leshchenko.

The anti-corruption bureau is "fully independent," a Poroshenko spokesman told POLITICO last month. The spokesman said the presidential administration did not take any "targeted action against Manafort."

The spokesman in a written statement said Leshchenko "positions himself as a representative of internal opposition in the Bloc of Petro Poroshenko's faction, despite [the fact that] he belongs to the faction," adding, "it was about him personally who pushed [the anti-corruption bureau] to proceed with investigation on Manafort."

The post that appears to be the first to disseminate the texts from Manafort's daughter included some anti-Trump language, justifying the hack as retribution on behalf of those damaged by Trump's politics.

The site hosting the post is associated with a hacktivist collective that is relatively unknown in the cybersecurity world.

One former U.S. military intelligence cybersecurity analyst said, "I don't think we've got a history with them. They are not a known entity."

The cybersecurity analyst, whose company patrols cyberspace in search of hacker groups for private clients and government agencies, said the collective "seems like randos, not the nation-states we usually track."

[May 23, 2017] Trumped-up claims against Trump by Ray McGovern

Notable quotes:
"... Truth is, President Trump had ample reason to be fed up with Mr. Comey, in part for his lack of enthusiasm to investigate actual, provable crimes related to "Russia-gate" -- like leaking information from highly sensitive intercepted communications to precipitate the demise of Trump aide Michael Flynn ..."
"... we suspect Mr. Comey already knows who was responsible.) ..."
"... In contrast, Mr. Comey evinced strong determination to chase after ties between Russia and the Trump campaign until the cows came home. In the meantime, the investigation (already underway for 10 months) would itself cast doubt on the legitimacy of Mr. Trump's presidency and put the kibosh on plans to forge a more workable relationship with Russia -- a win-win for the establishment and the FBI/CIA/NSA "Deep State"; a lose-lose for the president. ..."
"... So far, it has been all smoke and mirrors with no chargeable offenses and not a scintilla of convincing evidence of Russian "meddling" in the election. The oft-cited, but evidence-free, CIA/FBI/NSA report of Jan. 6, crafted by "hand-picked" analysts, according to then-Director of National Intelligence James Clapper , is of a piece with the "high-confidence," but fraudulent, National Intelligence Estimate 15 years ago about weapons of mass destruction in Iraq. ..."
"... On March 31, 2017, WikiLeaks released original CIA documents - ignored by mainstream media - showing that the agency had created a program allowing it to break into computers and servers and make it look like others did it by leaving telltale signs like Cyrillic markings, ..."
"... It is altogether possible that the hacking attributed to Russia was actually one of several "active measures" undertaken by a cabal consisting of the CIA, FBI, NSA and Mr. Clapper - the same agencies responsible for the lame, evidence-free memorandum of Jan. 6. ..."
"... Mr. Comey displayed considerable discomfort on March 20, explaining to the House Intelligence Committee why the FBI did not insist on getting physical access to the Democratic National Committee computers in order to do its own proper forensics, but chose to rely on the those done by DNC contractor Crowdstrike. Could this be explained by Mr. Comey's fear that FBI technicians not fully briefed on CIA/NSA/FBI Deep State programs might uncover a lot more than he wanted? Did this play a role in Mr. Trump's firing of Mr. Comey? ..."
"... President Trump has entered into a high-stakes gamble in confronting the Deep State and its media allies over the evidence-free accusations of his colluding with Russia. Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer, a New York Democrat, publicly warned him of the risk earlier this year. "You take on the intelligence community, they have six ways from Sunday at getting back at you," ..."
May 17, 2017 | www.baltimoresun.com
Donald Trump said he had fired FBI Director James Comey over "this Russia thing, with Trump and Russia." The president labeled it a "made-up story" and, by all appearances, he is mostly correct.

A few days before his firing, Mr. Comey reportedly had asked for still more resources to hunt the Russian bear. Pundit piranhas swarmed to charge Mr. Trump with trying to thwart the investigation into how the Russians supposedly "interfered" to help him win the election.

But can that commentary bear close scrutiny, or is it the " phony narrative " Senate Republican Whip John Cornyn of Texas claims it to be? Mr. Cornyn has quipped that, if impeding the investigation was Mr. Trump's aim, "This strikes me as a lousy way to do it. All it does is heighten the attention given to the issue."

Truth is, President Trump had ample reason to be fed up with Mr. Comey, in part for his lack of enthusiasm to investigate actual, provable crimes related to "Russia-gate" -- like leaking information from highly sensitive intercepted communications to precipitate the demise of Trump aide Michael Flynn . Mr. Flynn was caught "red-handed," so to speak, talking with Russia's ambassador last December. (In our experience, finding the culprit for that leak should not be very difficult; we suspect Mr. Comey already knows who was responsible.)

In contrast, Mr. Comey evinced strong determination to chase after ties between Russia and the Trump campaign until the cows came home. In the meantime, the investigation (already underway for 10 months) would itself cast doubt on the legitimacy of Mr. Trump's presidency and put the kibosh on plans to forge a more workable relationship with Russia -- a win-win for the establishment and the FBI/CIA/NSA "Deep State"; a lose-lose for the president.

So far, it has been all smoke and mirrors with no chargeable offenses and not a scintilla of convincing evidence of Russian "meddling" in the election. The oft-cited, but evidence-free, CIA/FBI/NSA report of Jan. 6, crafted by "hand-picked" analysts, according to then-Director of National Intelligence James Clapper , is of a piece with the "high-confidence," but fraudulent, National Intelligence Estimate 15 years ago about weapons of mass destruction in Iraq.

But what about "Russia hacking," the centerpiece of accusations of Kremlin "interference" to help Mr.Trump?

On March 31, 2017, WikiLeaks released original CIA documents - ignored by mainstream media - showing that the agency had created a program allowing it to break into computers and servers and make it look like others did it by leaving telltale signs like Cyrillic markings, for example. The capabilities shown in what WikiLeaks calls the "Vault 7" trove of CIA documents required the creation of hundreds of millions of lines of source code. At $25 per line of code, that amounts to about $2.5 billion for each 100 million code lines. But the Deep State has that kind of money and would probably consider the expenditure a good return on investment for "proving" the Russians hacked.

It is altogether possible that the hacking attributed to Russia was actually one of several "active measures" undertaken by a cabal consisting of the CIA, FBI, NSA and Mr. Clapper - the same agencies responsible for the lame, evidence-free memorandum of Jan. 6.

Mr. Comey displayed considerable discomfort on March 20, explaining to the House Intelligence Committee why the FBI did not insist on getting physical access to the Democratic National Committee computers in order to do its own proper forensics, but chose to rely on the those done by DNC contractor Crowdstrike. Could this be explained by Mr. Comey's fear that FBI technicians not fully briefed on CIA/NSA/FBI Deep State programs might uncover a lot more than he wanted? Did this play a role in Mr. Trump's firing of Mr. Comey?

President Trump has entered into a high-stakes gamble in confronting the Deep State and its media allies over the evidence-free accusations of his colluding with Russia. Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer, a New York Democrat, publicly warned him of the risk earlier this year. "You take on the intelligence community, they have six ways from Sunday at getting back at you," Mr. Schumer told MSNBC's Rachel Maddow on Jan. 3.

If Mr. Trump continues to "take on" the Deep State, he will be fighting uphill, whether he's in the right or not. It is far from certain he will prevail.

Ray McGovern (rrmcgovern@gmail.com) was a CIA analyst for 27 years; he briefed the president's daily brief one-on-one to President Reagan's most senior national security officials from 1981-85. William Binney (williambinney0802@comcast.net) worked for NSA for 36 years, retiring in 2001 as the technical director of world military and geopolitical analysis and reporting; he created many of the collection systems still used by NSA.

truth_will_set_you_free Newcomer 4day(s)ago
The public owes a tremendous debt of gratitude to both Mr. McGovern and Mr. Binney, who are substantial individuals with sterling reputations, for putting themselves forward and informing the public of the crimes that are taking place in DC behind closed doors.

The fact that paid shills and trolls would make the effort to post content free criticisms of this article only serves to underline the article's importance to a thoughtful reader. The people who sponsor these posters obviously have complete contempt for the public. However, each day, thanks to articles like this and the idiotic attempts to criticize them, more and more people are becoming aware of the fraud that is DC.

[May 23, 2017] Former C.I.A. Chief Tells of Concern Over Possible Russia Ties to Trump Campaign

Warren Commission replay, anybody ?
Notable quotes:
"... John O. Brennan, the former director of the C.I.A., said publicly for the first time Tuesday that he was concerned about possible ties between Russia and the Trump campaign ..."
"... Mr. Brennan became so concerned last summer about signs of Russian election meddling that he held urgent, classified briefings for eight senior members of Congress, speaking with some of them over secure phone lines while they were away on recess. In those conversations, he told lawmakers there was evidence that Russia was specifically working to elect Mr. Trump as president. ..."
May 23, 2017 | www.nytimes.com

John O. Brennan, the former director of the C.I.A., said publicly for the first time Tuesday that he was concerned about possible ties between Russia and the Trump campaign.

President Trump asked two top intelligence officials to deny the existence of any evidence of collusion between his campaign and Russia, former officials said. Both of the intelligence officials are testifying before lawmakers on Tuesday.

Mr. Brennan, the former C.I.A. director, said Tuesday that he became concerned last year that the Russian government was trying to influence members of the Trump campaign to act - wittingly or unwittingly - on Moscow's behalf.

"I encountered and am aware of information and intelligence that revealed contacts and interactions between Russian officials and U.S. persons involved in the Trump campaign that I was concerned about because of known Russian efforts to suborn such individuals," Mr. Brennan told lawmakers on the House Intelligence Committee.

It raised questions in my mind about whether Russia was able to gain the cooperation of those individuals," he said, adding that he did not know whether the Russian efforts were successful.

He added, "I don't know whether such collusion existed."

It was the first time he publicly acknowledged that he was concerned about possible ties between Russia and the Trump campaign.

He said he left office in January with many unanswered questions about the Russian influence operation. Intelligence officials have said that Russia tried to tip the election toward Mr. Trump.

Mr. Brennan became so concerned last summer about signs of Russian election meddling that he held urgent, classified briefings for eight senior members of Congress, speaking with some of them over secure phone lines while they were away on recess. In those conversations, he told lawmakers there was evidence that Russia was specifically working to elect Mr. Trump as president.

Mr. Brennan was also one of a handful of officials who briefed both President Barack Obama and Mr. Trump in January on a broad intelligence community report revealing that President Vladimir V. Putin of Russia had personally ordered an "influence campaign" targeting the presidential election.

- Matt Apuzzo

[May 23, 2017] Since Wheeler and the Riches found the dead horse heads at the foot of their beds, things started happening

www.unz.com

Erebus , May 22, 2017 at 1:51 pm GMT

May 23, 2017 | www.unz.com

@Carlton Meyer Private investigator Rod Wheeler made a few bucks doing an investigation, but soon realized that he stirred up a high-level hornets nest. Whoever killed Rich would not hesitate to threaten Wheeler or his family or his pension. Suddenly, Wheeler recants everything that he recently put in writing, with no explanation. Soon he will claim that he never did the investigation and has never even been to DC.

[May 23, 2017] Trump Is the Symptom, Not the Disease by Chris Hedges

Pretty naive, but poignant rant
Notable quotes:
"... It began when big money was employed by political operatives such as Roger Stone, a close Trump adviser, to create negative political advertisements and false narratives to deceive the public, turning political debate into burlesque. On all these fronts we have lost. We are trapped like rats in a cage. A narcissist and imbecile may be turning the electric shocks on and off, but the problem is the corporate state, and unless we dismantle that, we are doomed. ..."
"... "What's necessary for the state is the illusion of normality, of regularity," America's best-known political prisoner, Mumia Abu-Jamal, told me last week by phone from the prison where he is incarcerated in Frackville, Pa. " In Rome, what the emperors needed was bread and circuses. In America, what we need is 'Housewives of Atlanta.' We need sports. The moral stories of good cops and evil people. Because you have that . there is no critical thinking in America during this period... ..."
"... Trump, an acute embarrassment to the corporate state and the organs of internal security, may be removed from the presidency, but such a palace coup would only further consolidate the power of the deep state and intensify internal measures of repression. ..."
May 16, 2017 | www.informationclearinghouse.info

Forget the firing of James Comey. Forget the paralysis in Congress. Forget the idiocy of a press that covers our descent into tyranny as if it were a sports contest between corporate Republicans and corporate Democrats or a reality show starring our maniacal president and the idiots that surround him. Forget the noise.

The crisis we face is not embodied in the public images of the politicians that run our dysfunctional government. The crisis we face is the result of a four-decade-long, slow-motion corporate coup that has rendered the citizen impotent, left us without any authentic democratic institutions and allowed corporate and military power to become omnipotent. This crisis has spawned a corrupt electoral system of legalized bribery and empowered those public figures that master the arts of entertainment and artifice. And if we do not overthrow the neoliberal , corporate forces that have destroyed our democracy we will continue to vomit up more monstrosities as dangerous as Donald Trump.

Trump is the symptom, not the disease.

Our descent into despotism began with the pardoning of Richard Nixon , all of whose impeachable crimes are now legal, and the extrajudicial assault, including targeted assassinations and imprisonment, carried out on dissidents and radicals, especially black radicals.

It began with the creation of corporate-funded foundations and organizations that took control of the press, the courts, the universities, scientific research and the two major political parties. It began with empowering militarized police to kill unarmed citizens and the spread of our horrendous system of mass incarceration and the death penalty. It began with the stripping away of our most basic constitutional rights-privacy, due process, habeas corpus, fair elections and dissent.

It began when big money was employed by political operatives such as Roger Stone, a close Trump adviser, to create negative political advertisements and false narratives to deceive the public, turning political debate into burlesque. On all these fronts we have lost. We are trapped like rats in a cage. A narcissist and imbecile may be turning the electric shocks on and off, but the problem is the corporate state, and unless we dismantle that, we are doomed.

"What's necessary for the state is the illusion of normality, of regularity," America's best-known political prisoner, Mumia Abu-Jamal, told me last week by phone from the prison where he is incarcerated in Frackville, Pa. " In Rome, what the emperors needed was bread and circuses. In America, what we need is 'Housewives of Atlanta.' We need sports. The moral stories of good cops and evil people. Because you have that . there is no critical thinking in America during this period...

... ... ...

Trump, an acute embarrassment to the corporate state and the organs of internal security, may be removed from the presidency, but such a palace coup would only further consolidate the power of the deep state and intensify internal measures of repression.

[May 23, 2017] Why Trumps First Trip Is Focusing on Faith

Attempt to reverse the fact that the USA invasion of Iraq strengthens Iran regional influence by forging "Sunni NATO"
May 23, 2017 | nationalinterest.org

The administration has made it increasingly clear that, in addition to the goal of annihilating the Islamic State as an organized state, it will also seek to contain Iranian regional ambitions in the Middle East. This has been graphically underscored with two unprecedented air strikes against the Assad regime in Syria. The first one, in April 2017, seemingly took Syrian use of chemical weapons off the table. The second one, on May 18, 2017, targeted Syrian (and possibly Hezbollah) ground forces that threatened Syrian rebels tied to the United States and Jordan. These Syrian rebels are trying to race to the Euphrates as ISIS weakens, in a possible precursor to setting up some sort of safe, liberated zone in eastern Syria, controlled by pro-Western rebels.

A key part of this anti-ISIS, anti-Iran equation that the administration has attempted to highlight, albeit in inchoate ways to date, is that this fight has an ideological dimension that the previous administration ignored or minimized. This concern, reportedly controversial even within the White House, and which has been often crudely depicted in the media as mere "Islamophobia," actually is an avowal that men are motivated by more than economics and comfort, and that ideas and identity still have power, and need to be understood.

The second "deliverable" concerns Israel. Despite some questions on focusing on the Arab-Israeli peace process, the new administration has already sought to differentiate itself from the Obama administration in openly and aggressively standing with Israel and the Netanyahu administration, whether at the United Nations or on other issues, such as the Iranian threat. The general expectation is that, whatever the spin, this administration will be much more outspokenly pro-Israel than the previous one.

[May 23, 2017] CIA, the counerstone of the deep state, might have agenda that is readically differrent from the US national interest and reflect agenda of the special interest groups

CIA is actually a state within the state as Church commission revealed and it has an immanent tendency to seek control over "surface state" and media. In other words large intelligence apparatus might well be incompatible with the democratic governance.

"In the long run, the CIA can't deceive the Chinese government without also deceiving, in some way, the American public. This leaves us with an obvious problem: Should we believe anything the CIA says?" [RealClearWorld]. "It's a tough question for a democracy to answer. Trust is built on the tacit agreement that the "bad things" an agency does are good for the country. If the public believes that that is no longer the case – if it believes the agency is acting out of self-interest and not national interest – then the agreement is broken. The intelligence agency is seen as an impediment of the right to national self-determination, a means for the ends of the few."

  1. Huey Long

    RE: Hall of Mirrors/Believing the CIA

    The CIA has a track record of acting out of self interest since its inception and should not be believed.

    That being said, the public is almost completely unaware of the agency's misdeeds. I think the reason folks like Manning, Snowden and Assange are so reviled by the agency is because they are a threat to the CIA's reputation more than anything else.

[May 23, 2017] CIA, the counerstone of the deep state, might have agenda that is readically differrent from the US national interest and reflect agenda of the special interest groups

CIA is actually a state within the state as Church commission revealed and it has an immanent tendency to seek control over "surface state" and media. In other words large intelligence apparatus might well be incompatible with the democratic governance.
www.aim.org

"In the long run, the CIA can't deceive the Chinese government without also deceiving, in some way, the American public. This leaves us with an obvious problem: Should we believe anything the CIA says?" [RealClearWorld]. "It's a tough question for a democracy to answer. Trust is built on the tacit agreement that the "bad things" an agency does are good for the country. If the public believes that that is no longer the case – if it believes the agency is acting out of self-interest and not national interest – then the agreement is broken. The intelligence agency is seen as an impediment of the right to national self-determination, a means for the ends of the few."

[May 23, 2017] Are they really out to get Trump by Philip Girald

Highly recommended!
Notable quotes:
"... Ray suggests that Brennan and also Comey may been at the center of a "Deep State" combined CIA-NSA-FBI cabal working to discredit the Trump candidacy and delegitimize his presidency. Brennan in particular was uniquely well placed to fabricate the Russian hacker narrative that has been fully embraced by Congress and the media even though no actual evidence supporting that claim has yet been produced. As WikiLeaks has now revealed that the CIA had the technical ability to hack into sites surreptitiously while leaving behind footprints that would attribute the hack to someone else, including the Russians, it does not take much imagination to consider that the alleged trail to Moscow might have been fabricated. If that is so, this false intelligence has in turn proven to be of immense value to those seeking to present "proof" that the Russian government handed the presidency to Donald Trump. ..."
"... Robert Parry asked in an article on May 10 th whether we are seeing is "Watergate redux or 'Deep State' coup?" and then followed up with a second Piece "The 'Soft Coup' of Russia-gate" on the 13 th . In other words, is this all a cover-up of wrongdoing by the White House akin to President Richard Nixon's firing of Watergate independent special prosecutor Archibald Cox and the resignations of both the Attorney General and Deputy Attorney General or is it something quite different, an undermining of an elected president who has not actually committed any "high crimes and misdemeanors" to force his removal from office. ..."
"... Parry sees the three key players in the scheme as John Brennan of CIA, Director of National Intelligence James Clapper and James Comey of the FBI. Comey's role in the "coup" was key as it consisted of using his office to undercut both Hillary Clinton and Trump, neither of whom was seen as a truly suitable candidate by the Deep State. He speculates that a broken election might well have resulted in a vote in the House of Representatives to elect the new president, a process that might have produced a Colin Powell presidency as Powell actually received three votes in the Electoral College and therefore was an acceptable candidate under the rules governing the electoral process. ..."
"... Yes, the scheme is bizarre, but Parry carefully documents how Russiagate has developed and how the national security and intelligence organs have been key players as it moved along, often working by leaking classified information. ..."
"... anyone even vaguely connected with Trump who also had contact with Russia or Russians has been regarded as a potential traitor. Carter Page, for example, who was investigated under a Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act warrant, was under suspicion because he made a speech in Moscow which was mildly critical of the west's interaction with Russia after the fall of communism. ..."
"... Parry's point is that there is a growing Washington consensus that consists of traditional liberals and progressives as well as Democratic globalist interventionists and neoconservatives who believe that Donald Trump must be removed from office no matter what it takes. ..."
"... The interventionists and neocons in particular already control most of the foreign policy mechanisms but they continue to see Trump as a possible impediment to their plans for aggressive action against a host of enemies, most particularly Russia. ..."
"... Ray has been strongly critical of the current foreign policy, most particularly of the expansion of various wars, claims of Damascus's use of chemical weapons, and the cruise missile attack on Syria. Robert in his latest article describes Trump as narcissistic and politically incompetent. But their legitimate concerns are that we are moving in a direction that is far more dangerous than Trump. A soft coup engineered by the national security and intelligence agencies would be far more dangerous to our democracy than anything Donald Trump can do. ..."
"... Brennan is a particularly unsavory character. There has been some baying-at-the-moon speculation that he is a Moslem convert! ..."
"... The coup, if successful, would probably mean the end of what would traditionally be considered to be a republican form of government in the US and its replacement by a deep state dictatorship. ..."
"... The USA is not different from other western countries, such as GB, France, Austria, Italy, Greece, Netherlands. In each of these countries the battle is going on between the establishment, and those who want to rid themselves of this establishment. ..."
"... The battle is between trying to dominate the world, neoliberalism, destruction of nation states, power of money, on the one hand, and nationalism, more or less certain jobs, rejection of wars, power of governments, on the other hand. ..."
"... What is amazing is that Mr Giraldi still believes the USA is a democracy. Maybe if one compares it with China. Anyway, "a soft coup" has already happened in you history -- Kennedy's assassination by the deep state- and life just went on in the "greatest democracy" in the earth. ..."
"... Perhaps this is the indication of where Trump and DOJ are going: Monday during the 10 p.m. ET news broadcast on Fox's Washington, D.C. affiliate WTTG, correspondent Marina Marraco said an investigation by former D.C. homicide detective Rod Wheeler found that the now-deceased Democratic National Committee staffer Seth Rich had been emailing with WikiLeaks. ..."
"... Despite the TV image, it is rare for a CEO to outright sack one of his top executives. The story of dinners where Comey made his pitch to stay rings true to what I have seen in real life. Trump probably asked Comey if he wouldn't be happier returning to private business where he made a boatload more money, and Comey, drunk on the power of high public office just wouldn't pull the trigger for him. ..."
"... Having just noticed the latest by-line in Antiwar.com, I am forced to raise the question we should all be asking ourselves "Was it Russia or was it .. Seth Rich ? " ..."
"... If there was indeed a "soft coup" in our country, did it not occur at the DNC convention when our back room oligarchs decided to "putsch" Bernie Sanders out of the race, and gift the nomination to Hillary ? ..."
"... Was it not Bernie Sanders who was igniting the young progressive liberal base by the tens of millions ? Was it not Bernie who was gaining enormous momentum as the race for the nomination went on ? Was it not Bernie's "message" that began to ring true for so many voters across the country ? ..."
"... The homicide detective hired by the family , also pointed out, after doing some rudimentary due diligence, that word had come down through the DC mayor's office to stymie its own detectives in the murder investigation of Mr. Rich. Strange thing, especially when we are dealing with a homicide .No, Mr Giraldi ? If the Seth Rich murder was a "botched robbery" as is claimed, why won't the DC police release Seth's laptop computer to his family ? ..."
"... I would be very interested in your take on the latest impeachable "scandal", that Trump revealed unrevealable top secrets to Lavrov and Kislyak during their recent White House meeting. Among other things, how would the Washington Post know the specifics of the Trump-Lavrov conversation? Is the White House bugged? And if an intelligence source was somehow really compromised, is advertising that fact in the Washington Post (presumably on the front page) really the wisest course? ..."
"... "A soft coup engineered by the national security and intelligence agencies would be far more dangerous to our democracy than anything Donald Trump can do." Until further notice, that is absolutely correct. It needs to be recalled – ad nauseam – that Russia-gate, or whatever rubbish its called, is a LIE. There is NO, repeat NO evidence of ANY wrong-doing by Trump re the Russians. The MSM & various elements of the "establishment" should suicide NOW from pure SHAME. ..."
"... Trump was right in firing Comey. An open ended investigation that hasn't yielded a scintilla of evidence of collusion with Russia after one year is not acceptable. Such an investigation would not have been tolerated if the target was a Marxist mulatto by the name of Barack Hussein Obama. Blacks would have rioted in response while the media cheered them on. ..."
"... If there's a Constitutional crisis then it's that the deep state apparatus in the form of the various alphabet soup intelligence agencies have the power to plot a coup against a duly elected president. They need to be stripped of much of their power and reformed but it's probably already too late for that. ..."
"... I thought since Trump went from advocating a humble, non-interventionist foreign policy to loud and proud neo-conservative (in less than 100 days) that that would buy him protection from deep state machinations and endear him to the corrupt Washington, D.C. establishment. ..."
"... The only thing I can think of is that even though Trump's picking up where Dubya and Obama left off on foreign policy, the deep state knows that Trump can be totally unpredictable and change on a dime. So he could go off the establishment reservation at a moment's notice which makes them apoplectic. Hence, their attempts to get him out of the way and install someone more pliant and predictable like Tom Pence. ..."
"... Deepstate has been sustaining and expanding its conspiracies for 100 years. (There is always a 'deep state' of some kind, but the current well-organized structure was created by Wilson.) A conspiracy AGAINST Deepstate is hard to sustain because Deepstate owns and monitors all public communications. ..."
"... While the collusion story is an obvious canard there is another level to this "Russian thing" which may prove to be extremely damaging to Trump. And that is Trump's participation in a money-laundering operation with the Russo-jewish mafia going back decades. ..."
"... The money-laundering angle is already all over the Web (ex. google: Bayrock Trump) and, one must assume, in the hands of various intelligence agencies. .This may be the basis for Trump's increasingly frantic attempts to shut down the "Russian thing" investigation.(Comey firing??) ..."
"... I don't think, however, the notion of the "establishment" is a problem in itself. Our country has always had powerful elites, so have many other countries. The problem which presents itself today is our elites seem determined to perpetuate endless wars that cost obscene amounts of money, and do not seem to produce positive results in any of the places the wars are being fought. ..."
"... The short answer is yes! March 31, 2017 The Surveillance State Behind Russia-Gate. Although many details are still hazy because of secrecy – and further befogged by politics – it appears House Intelligence Committee Chairman Devin Nunes was informed last week about invasive electronic surveillance of senior U.S. government officials and, in turn, passed that information onto President Trump. ..."
"... The people pushing the big lie about Trump and Russia are legion. And they are not stupid. They are evil. They are the same people who are preparing a preemptive nuclear attack against Russia and China. They are the globalists who would institute a universal Feudalism from which there would be no escape. I have no further use for Trump. But his enemies remain enemies of the people. ..."
May 16, 2017 | www.unz.com
And what if there really is a conspiracy against Donald Trump being orchestrated within the various national security agencies that are part of the United States government? The president has been complaining for months about damaging leaks emanating from the intelligence community and the failure of Congress to pay any attention to the illegal dissemination of classified information. It is quite possible that Trump has become aware that there is actually something going on and that something just might be a conspiracy to delegitimize and somehow remove him from office.

President Trump has also been insisting that the "Russian thing" is a made-up story, a view that I happen to agree with. I recently produced my own analysis of the possibility that there is in progress a soft, or stealth or silent coup, call it what you will, underway directed against the president and that, if it exists, it is being directed by former senior officials from the Obama White House. Indeed, it is quite plausible to suggest that it was orchestrated within the Obama White House itself before the government changed hands at the inauguration on January 20 th . In line with that thinking, some observers are now suggesting that Comey might well have been party to the conspiracy and his dismissal would have been perfectly justified based on his demonstrated interference in both the electoral process and in his broadening of the acceptable role of his own Bureau, which Trump has described as "showboating."

Two well-informed observers of the situation have recently joined in the discussion, Robert Parry of Consortiumnews and former CIA senior analyst Ray McGovern of the Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity. McGovern has noted, as have I, that there is one individual who has been curiously absent from the list of former officials who have been called in to testify before the Senate Intelligence Committee. That is ex-CIA Director John Brennan, who many have long considered an extreme Obama/Hillary Clinton loyalist long rumored to be at the center of the information damaging to Team Trump sent to Washington by friendly intelligence services, including the British.

Like Parry, I am reluctant to embrace conspiracy theories, in my case largely because I believe a conspiracy is awfully hard to sustain. The federal government leaks like a sieve and if more than two conspirators ever meet in the CIA basement it would seem to me their discussion would become public knowledge within forty-eight hours, but perhaps what we are seeing here is less a formal arrangement than a group of individuals who are loosely connected while driven by a common objective.

Parry sees the three key players in the scheme as John Brennan of CIA, Director of National Intelligence James Clapper and James Comey of the FBI. Comey's role in the "coup" was key as it consisted of using his office to undercut both Hillary Clinton and Trump, neither of whom was seen as a truly suitable candidate by the Deep State. He speculates that a broken election might well have resulted in a vote in the House of Representatives to elect the new president, a process that might have produced a Colin Powell presidency as Powell actually received three votes in the Electoral College and therefore was an acceptable candidate under the rules governing the electoral process.

Yes, the scheme is bizarre, but Parry carefully documents how Russiagate has developed and how the national security and intelligence organs have been key players as it moved along, often working by leaking classified information. And President Barack Obama was likely the initiator, notably so when he de facto authorized the wide distribution of raw intelligence on Trump and the Russians through executive order. Parry notes, as would I, that to date no actual evidence has been presented to support allegations that Russia sought to influence the U.S. election and/or that Trump associates were somehow coopted by Moscow's intelligence services as part of the process. Nevertheless, anyone even vaguely connected with Trump who also had contact with Russia or Russians has been regarded as a potential traitor. Carter Page, for example, who was investigated under a Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act warrant, was under suspicion because he made a speech in Moscow which was mildly critical of the west's interaction with Russia after the fall of communism.

Parry's point is that there is a growing Washington consensus that consists of traditional liberals and progressives as well as Democratic globalist interventionists and neoconservatives who believe that Donald Trump must be removed from office no matter what it takes.

The interventionists and neocons in particular already control most of the foreign policy mechanisms but they continue to see Trump as a possible impediment to their plans for aggressive action against a host of enemies, most particularly Russia. As they are desirous of bringing down Trump "legally" through either impeachment or Article 25 of the Constitution which permits removal for incapacity, it might be termed a constitutional coup, though the other labels cited above also fit.

The rationale Trump haters have fabricated is simple: the president and his team colluded with the Russians to rig the 2016 election in his favor, which, if true, would provide grounds for impeachment. The driving force, in terms of the argument being made, is that removing Trump must be done "for the good of the country" and to "correct a mistake made by the American voters."

The mainstream media is completely on board of the process, including the outlets that flatter themselves by describing their national stature, most notably the New York Times and Washington Post.

So what is to be done? For starters, until Donald Trump has unambiguously broken a law the critics should take a valium and relax. He is an elected president and his predecessors George W. Bush and Barack Obama certainly did plenty of things that in retrospect do not bear much scrutiny. Folks like Ray McGovern and Robert Parry should be listened to even when they are being provocative in their views. They are not, to be sure, friends of the White House in any conventional way and are not apologists for those in power, quite the contrary. Ray has been strongly critical of the current foreign policy, most particularly of the expansion of various wars, claims of Damascus's use of chemical weapons, and the cruise missile attack on Syria. Robert in his latest article describes Trump as narcissistic and politically incompetent. But their legitimate concerns are that we are moving in a direction that is far more dangerous than Trump. A soft coup engineered by the national security and intelligence agencies would be far more dangerous to our democracy than anything Donald Trump can do. Are They Really Out to Get Trump? Sometimes paranoia is justified

Philip Giraldi May 16, 2017 1,600 Words

Dan Hayes , May 16, 2017 at 4:18 am GMT

Brennan is a particularly unsavory character. There has been some baying-at-the-moon speculation that he is a Moslem convert!

exiled off mainstreet , May 16, 2017 at 5:26 am GMT

The coup, if successful, would probably mean the end of what would traditionally be considered to be a republican form of government in the US and its replacement by a deep state dictatorship.

In light of what is being used, a phony claim of Russian interference with the US political system, the danger that nuclear war might be the outcome of this coup is real.

utu , May 16, 2017 at 5:36 am GMT

I don't know who Robert Parry is but to me this Colin Powell stuff is pure nonsense. At the same time my answer to the question "Are They Really Out to Get Trump?" is affirmative. Republicans and Democrats want Trump out and Pence in. The operation with Flynn who allegedly deceived Pence was part of this plan. That Trump fired Flynn was his greatest mistake in this game. It was not fatal yet. This was Their plan since the election or even earlier since Republican convention: have Trump step down and have Pence take over. After April 4th it seemed that They got Trump where They wanted him to be. Trump even became presidential. The escalation of rhetoric against North Korea over following weekend and week reinforced this perception until it turned out that it was all fake. There was no fleet steaming to Korea. Media realized they were played by Trump. During this time Trump and Tillerson in particular got some breathing space. The pre-April 4 policy of agreeing with Russia on Syria continued. Apparently Russia understood that the missile attack on Syria was just part of the game. It was not personal. More recently the US agreed to safe zones plan by Russia, Syria, Iran and Turkey. One should expect a false flag of gas attack or accidental bombing by US air force of Syrian forces to happen soon – broadcasted all night before the start of the US media news cycle by BBC, so US media, all talking heads memorize all talking points.

While it is possible that Trump behaves erratically w/o well thought out plans we must give him a benefit of doubt and assume that there is a deep reason for firing Comey. Trump is fighting for his life. While he would prefer to be presidential and enjoy easy going times and provide peace and safety for his family by know he knows that nothing will satisfy Them. They want him out! Erratic Trump and confused and chaotic WH is a meme which They and Their media want to plant and reinforce. That's why we hear about it all the time. But how to explain the firing of Comey? I would look for the answer at DOJ. Initially their hands were tied up but slowly they showed that there is new leadership at DOJ that was working for Trump for a change. Their independence of the Deep State was demonstrated by forcing Israel police to arrest Mossad operative/patsy for the wave of world wide anti-semitic hoaxes that were meant to undermine and compromise Trump. This is the proof that DOJ and part of FBI finally is strong enough and working for Trump. What next do they want to do? If they want to squash this "collusion with Russia" false narrative that is paralyzing the administration and in fact all belt way they must hit at those who originated this narrative, meaning Hillary Clinton and Obama. To do it they need to have a full control of FBI. Comey is gone. McCabe must go next. Will DOJ and new FBI go after Susan Rice, Sally Yates and Loretta Lynch? If they do this will lead to Obama. Will they go after Hillary Clinton and her emails? Will they secure Anthony Weiner computer? Does it still exist? Who will be nominated to replace Comey? What Trump will have to promise GOP to have him approved?

The bottom line is that Trump is fighting for his life.

jilles dykstra , May 16, 2017 at 5:51 am GMT

Of course they are. The USA is not different from other western countries, such as GB, France, Austria, Italy, Greece, Netherlands. In each of these countries the battle is going on between the establishment, and those who want to rid themselves of this establishment.

GB is the first country where maybe this succeeded, but, as in the USA, the GB establishment and the EU establishment do anything to prevent that things really change.

The battle is between trying to dominate the world, neoliberalism, destruction of nation states, power of money, on the one hand, and nationalism, more or less certain jobs, rejection of wars, power of governments, on the other hand.

In France one sees that once again the establishment won, 60% of the French still support the establishment, 40% rejects it.

In other countries more or less the same.

The opposing views make governing increasingly difficult, two months after the Dutch elections the efforts to contrue a government are a failure. Belgium was more than a year without a government. In Spain one government after another. The establishment now fears that Austria will turn around. Until now Brussels, by threats and cajoling, prevented a rebellion against Brussels in Poland and Hungary. The Greek rebellion failed completely.

Anon , May 16, 2017 at 6:05 am GMT

White House Leaks and the "Muh Russia" Seesaw

utu , May 16, 2017 at 6:08 am GMT

Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov had sought to sneak a recording device into the White House during last week's visit.

John Brown , May 16, 2017 at 6:09 am GMT

"A soft coup engineered by the national security and intelligence agencies would be far more dangerous to our democracy than anything Donald Trump can do" concludes the writer.

What is amazing is that Mr Giraldi still believes the USA is a democracy. Maybe if one compares it with China. Anyway, "a soft coup" has already happened in you history -- Kennedy's assassination by the deep state- and life just went on in the "greatest democracy" in the earth.

A "soft coup" against Donald Trump will be in fact an improvement. The "narcissist" president won't be killed. It will be a soft clean coup. Progress.

utu , May 16, 2017 at 6:52 am GMT

Perhaps this is the indication of where Trump and DOJ are going: Monday during the 10 p.m. ET news broadcast on Fox's Washington, D.C. affiliate WTTG, correspondent Marina Marraco said an investigation by former D.C. homicide detective Rod Wheeler found that the now-deceased Democratic National Committee staffer Seth Rich had been emailing with WikiLeaks.

http://www.breitbart.com/video/2017/05/15/report-investigator-says-evidence-showing-deceased-dnc-staffer-seth-rich-emailing-wikileaks/

But the Deep State respond with: Deep State Leaks Highly Classified Info to Washington Post to Smear President Trump

http://www.breitbart.com/big-government/2017/05/15/deep-state-leaks-highly-classified-info-to-washington-post-to-smear-president-trump/

The Alarmist , May 16, 2017 at 8:23 am GMT

Despite the TV image, it is rare for a CEO to outright sack one of his top executives. The story of dinners where Comey made his pitch to stay rings true to what I have seen in real life. Trump probably asked Comey if he wouldn't be happier returning to private business where he made a boatload more money, and Comey, drunk on the power of high public office just wouldn't pull the trigger for him.

Comey was a goner in November he just wouldn't go quietly and on his own accord, no doubt for the reasons suggested in this piece a so-called higher calling and his own inflated sense of service to his country.

alexander , May 16, 2017 at 8:52 am GMT

Dear Mr. Giraldi,

Thanks for another fine article.

Certainly writers like Robert Parry and Ray Mcgovern, as well as yourself, have earned the highest of marks from internet readers around the globe, anxious for some integrity of analysis , as they seek to understand our nation's policy decisions. As long as gentlemen like you, as well as others, keep writing , you will find your readership growing at an exponential rate.

Having just noticed the latest by-line in Antiwar.com, I am forced to raise the question we should all be asking ourselves "Was it Russia or was it .. Seth Rich ? "

If there was indeed a "soft coup" in our country, did it not occur at the DNC convention when our back room oligarchs decided to "putsch" Bernie Sanders out of the race, and gift the nomination to Hillary ?

Was it not Bernie Sanders who was igniting the young progressive liberal base by the tens of millions ? Was it not Bernie who was gaining enormous momentum as the race for the nomination went on ? Was it not Bernie's "message" that began to ring true for so many voters across the country ?

Was it not Bernie Sanders who may well have swept the DNC nomination, were it not for the "dirty pool" being played out in the back room ?.

According to the retired homicide detective, hired by the family of Seth Rich to investigate their son's bizarre murder, it was Seth Rich who WAS in contact with Wikileaks.

(For all those who don't know who Seth Rich was , he was the 27 year old "voter data director" at the DNC, shot to death on july 10, 2016, in the Bloomingdale neighborhood of Washington D.C.)

In an interview three days after Seth Rich was found dead, Julian Assange intimated, too, that Seth Rich HAD contacted Wikileaks .NOT Russia.

The homicide detective hired by the family , also pointed out, after doing some rudimentary due diligence, that word had come down through the DC mayor's office to stymie its own detectives in the murder investigation of Mr. Rich. Strange thing, especially when we are dealing with a homicide .No, Mr Giraldi ? If the Seth Rich murder was a "botched robbery" as is claimed, why won't the DC police release Seth's laptop computer to his family ?

We are all aware there were "shenanigans" going on in the DNC that put the kibosh on the Bernie nomination.(we all know this)

This makes sense too, given the fact that the DNC party bosses and their oligarchs, wanted Bernie running in the general election against the Donald like they wanted a "hole in the head". What we "cannot" see ..is how decisive Bernie's margin of victory might have been, Nor can we see what "crimes" were committed to ensure Hillary's run at the W. H. It is not much of a stretch to assume Seth Rich had hard evidence, perhaps of multiple counts of treasonous fraud and other sorted felonies that would have brought down "the back room" of the DNC.

Not good for the party..not good for its oligarchs .and not good for their Hillary anointment.

"Russia-gate" may prove to be the most concerted effort, by the powers that be, to DEFLECT from an investigation into their OWN "real"criminality .

How savvy and how clever they are to manipulate the public's perceptions, through Big Media, by grafting the allegations of the very crimes they may well have committed .onto Russia, the Donald, and Vladimir Putin.

Clever, clever, clever.

Can any of us imagine, how cold a day in hell it will be before Rachel Maddow(or any MSM "journalist") asks some basic questions about the Seth Rich laptop .or what was on it ?

Sub zero.

for-the-record , May 16, 2017 at 8:53 am GMT

Mr. Giralidi,

I would be very interested in your take on the latest impeachable "scandal", that Trump revealed unrevealable top secrets to Lavrov and Kislyak during their recent White House meeting. Among other things, how would the Washington Post know the specifics of the Trump-Lavrov conversation? Is the White House bugged? And if an intelligence source was somehow really compromised, is advertising that fact in the Washington Post (presumably on the front page) really the wisest course?

mp , May 16, 2017 at 9:29 am GMT

Trump has turned out to be very weak. Maybe he just doesn't believe in anything, so it doesn't matter to him. Or maybe he has some ideas, but has no clue about implementation. He's going to see the Tribe next week. That will tell us a lot, I'm thinking. But it's a lot that we probably already know or at least can guess.

animalogic , May 16, 2017 at 10:10 am GMT

"A soft coup engineered by the national security and intelligence agencies would be far more dangerous to our democracy than anything Donald Trump can do."
Until further notice, that is absolutely correct. It needs to be recalled – ad nauseam – that Russia-gate, or whatever rubbish its called, is a LIE. There is NO, repeat NO evidence of ANY wrong-doing by Trump re the Russians. The MSM & various elements of the "establishment" should suicide NOW from pure SHAME.

geokat62 , May 16, 2017 at 11:08 am GMT

A soft coup engineered by the national security and intelligence agencies would be far more dangerous to our democracy than anything Donald Trump can do.

For more dangerous to American democracy has been the ZOG engineered by the "Friends of Zion," but, unfortunately, there is little chance there will ever be a Zion-gate investigation.

KenH , May 16, 2017 at 11:10 am GMT

Trump was right in firing Comey. An open ended investigation that hasn't yielded a scintilla of evidence of collusion with Russia after one year is not acceptable. Such an investigation would not have been tolerated if the target was a Marxist mulatto by the name of Barack Hussein Obama. Blacks would have rioted in response while the media cheered them on.

If there's a Constitutional crisis then it's that the deep state apparatus in the form of the various alphabet soup intelligence agencies have the power to plot a coup against a duly elected president. They need to be stripped of much of their power and reformed but it's probably already too late for that.

I thought since Trump went from advocating a humble, non-interventionist foreign policy to loud and proud neo-conservative (in less than 100 days) that that would buy him protection from deep state machinations and endear him to the corrupt Washington, D.C. establishment. For a time he was even making "never Trumper" little (((William Kristol))) coo with delight which is no small feat. Moreover, he's a lickspittle of Israel which seems a prerequisite for a presidential candidate.

The only thing I can think of is that even though Trump's picking up where Dubya and Obama left off on foreign policy, the deep state knows that Trump can be totally unpredictable and change on a dime. So he could go off the establishment reservation at a moment's notice which makes them apoplectic. Hence, their attempts to get him out of the way and install someone more pliant and predictable like Tom Pence.

jilles dykstra , May 16, 2017 at 11:32 am GMT

@animalogic "A soft coup engineered by the national security and intelligence agencies would be far more dangerous to our democracy than anything Donald Trump can do."

Until further notice, that is absolutely correct.

It needs to be recalled - ad nauseam - that Russia-gate, or whatever rubbish its called, is a LIE. There is NO, repeat NO evidence of ANY wrong-doing by Trump re the Russians.

The MSM & various elements of the "establishment" should suicide NOW from pure SHAME.

polistra , May 16, 2017 at 11:56 am GMT

Conspiracies are NOT hard to sustain. That's an absurd statement. Deepstate has been sustaining and expanding its conspiracies for 100 years. (There is always a 'deep state' of some kind, but the current well-organized structure was created by Wilson.) A conspiracy AGAINST Deepstate is hard to sustain because Deepstate owns and monitors all public communications.

Hobo , May 16, 2017 at 12:16 pm GMT

While the collusion story is an obvious canard there is another level to this "Russian thing" which may prove to be extremely damaging to Trump. And that is Trump's participation in a money-laundering operation with the Russo-jewish mafia going back decades.

Some of the investigations have expanded their scope to include careful scrutiny of Trump's business dealings in relation to Russia. Recently FinCEN, which specializes in fighting money laundering, agreed to turn over records to the Senate Intelligence Committee in this regard. Even Sen. Linsey Graham recently stated he wanted to know more about Trump's business dealings with Russia. The possibility that this may result in a criminal investigation cannot be ruled out. The money-laundering angle is already all over the Web (ex. google: Bayrock Trump) and, one must assume, in the hands of various intelligence agencies. .This may be the basis for Trump's increasingly frantic attempts to shut down the "Russian thing" investigation.(Comey firing??)

Dutch Public Broadcasting has recently broadcast a two part series exploring some of the connections involving Trump's business dealings with Russia.

THE DUBIOUS FRIENDS OF DONALD TRUMP: THE RUSSIANS

More detail and background is provided in this informative article by James S. Henry, a reputable investigative journalist:

The Curious World of Donald Trump's Private Russian Connections

https://www.the-american-interest.com/2016/12/19/the-curious-world-of-donald-trumps-private-russian-connections/

p.s.: Regarding the term Russo-jewish mafia, should you watch the videos and read the article you will find the players involved are almost exclusively of a certain 'tribal' persuasion. (A number have direct links to the infamous Mogilevich crime syndicate (top 10 FBI's most wanted list) and one of the principals of Bayrock was named as a major Israeli organized crime figure by the Turkish media following his arrest there.)

Chris Bridges , May 16, 2017 at 12:39 pm GMT

Phil,

As you know, Brennan is an extreme liberal Democrat, a creature of both Clinton and Obama. He is an utterly unprincipled old fool. He failed as a CIA operations officer and went back to Langley with his tail between his legs to become analyst. Nothing wrong with that but he nursed bitter resentment at the Clandestine Service during his whole career. He was finally allowed to go out as chief in, of all places, Riyadh. He promptly destroyed the station with his incompetence, though he earned the praise of the ambassador, as such toadies usually do. Brennan is perfectly capable of the things you describe. Washington is awash in these kinds of traitors. If Trump does not have a plan to arrest them all some dark night then he is a fool himself.

MEexpert , May 16, 2017 at 1:19 pm GMT

And President Barack Obama was likely the initiator, notably so when he de facto authorized the wide distribution of raw intelligence on Trump and the Russians through executive order.

I repeat, why hasn't Trump issued an executive order cancelling Obama's executive order? He needs to stop this information sharing if he expects to remain President.

Phil, is there any one who has Trump's ear? The mainstream media are hell bent in destroying anyone close to Trump. First, Flynn, then Steve Bannon and now Kellyanne Conway. Trump must stop these leaks from the White House. He should fire all Obama holdovers.

utu , May 16, 2017 at 1:21 pm GMT

@Hobo While the collusion story is an obvious canard there is another level to this "Russian thing" which may prove to be extremely damaging to Trump. And that is Trump's participation in a money-laundering operation with the Russo-jewish mafia going back decades.

... ... ... ...

p.s.: Regarding the term Russo-jewish mafia, should you watch the videos and read the article you will find the players involved are almost exclusively of a certain 'tribal' persuasion. (A number have direct links to the infamous Mogilevich crime syndicate (top 10 FBI's most wanted list) and one of the principals of Bayrock was named as a major Israeli organized crime figure by the Turkish media following his arrest there.)

Sam Shama , May 16, 2017 at 1:39 pm GMT

I recently produced my own analysis of the possibility that there is in progress a soft, or stealth or silent coup, call it what you will, underway directed against the president and that, if it exists, it is being directed by former senior officials from the Obama White House. Indeed, it is quite plausible to suggest that it was orchestrated within the Obama White House itself before the government changed hands at the inauguration on January 20th. In line with that thinking, some observers are now suggesting that Comey might well have been party to the conspiracy and his dismissal would have been perfectly justified based on his demonstrated interference in both the electoral process and in his broadening of the acceptable role of his own Bureau , which Trump has described as "showboating."

It's quite difficult to accept this line of thought when Comey practically scuppered Hillary's bid, something strongly endorsed by Obama. Going with this narrative requires Obama to have engineered Hillary's departure followed by a concerted plan to unseat Trump as well, both objectives utilizing Comey! To what end? Paint chaos on the American political canvas?

RadicalCenter , May 16, 2017 at 2:07 pm GMT

@Colleen Pater This " theory " isnt a theory its not debatable and its clear both parties and every power node in the world are signalling they will do whatever they can to help. Its really a good thing they are not fooling anyone but some maroon prog snowflakes. Trump was the howard beale last option before civil war candidate, he won fair and square , actually despite massive cheating by the other side and now they are overthrowing him in full view of the american people.Its good as long as idiots on the right still believed in democracy, that getting their candidate in would change war was averted. after thirty years of steady leftism no matter who was in power they voted trump now trumps being overthrown. They will see we dont live in a democracy we live in the matrix democracy is diversionary tactic to prevent us from killing them all. And kill them all is what we must do.

jilles dykstra , May 16, 2017 at 2:28 pm GMT

@alexander Some fine points here, Mr, Dykstra,

I don't think, however, the notion of the "establishment" is a problem in itself. Our country has always had powerful elites, so have many other countries. The problem which presents itself today is our elites seem determined to perpetuate endless wars that cost obscene amounts of money, and do not seem to produce positive results in any of the places the wars are being fought.

The "establishment" does not seem to care. It is now wholly unthinkable for our "establishment" to consider "making peace"and ending our wars. There is an addiction to "war spending" and "war profiteering" which has consumed the Deep State Apparatus, especially since 9-11, and operates almost completely independently of any administration in office.

Its an insatiable appetite...that grows larger every year. Any President, elected by the people today,to end our wars will simply not be tolerated by the establishment class and the deep state it lords over. The problem is not that we have an "establishment", the problem is our establishment is addicted to war.

Only "war" will do for them, full time, all the time..... end of story. Today, any President is given two choices once in office....make WAR..... or be impeached.

anonymous , May 16, 2017 at 2:33 pm GMT

@Anon Trump Heads to Saudi Arabia - Target Iran and Iraq?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MIYy10NJcMI

Agent76 , May 16, 2017 at 2:33 pm GMT

The short answer is yes! March 31, 2017 The Surveillance State Behind Russia-Gate. Although many details are still hazy because of secrecy – and further befogged by politics – it appears House Intelligence Committee Chairman Devin Nunes was informed last week about invasive electronic surveillance of senior U.S. government officials and, in turn, passed that information onto President Trump.

http://www.globalresearch.ca/the-surveillance-state-behind-russia-gate/5582211

Mar 9, 2017 BADA BING! NSA Whistleblower Confirms Trump Was Tapped!

They're wire tapping President Trump, and Kim Kardashian, and Hulk Hogan, and you and EVERYBODY!

https://youtu.be/tWOCLMJRQ7I

John Jeremiah Smith , May 16, 2017 at 2:33 pm GMT

It is now wholly unthinkable for our "establishment" to consider "making peace"and ending our wars. There is an addiction to "war spending" and "war profiteering" which has consumed the Deep State Apparatus, especially since 9-11, and operates almost completely independently of any administration in office.

Precisely. Frankly, I suspect 90% of the daily brouhaha of conspiracies and collusion theories is a product solely of tawdry greed. The rich will do anything for money . anything.

John Jeremiah Smith , May 16, 2017 at 2:41 pm GMT

Reopening the investigation in a dramatic public manner (I guess we do tell who is under investigation) and then coming back to announce, "We were correct the first time; there is no case" might convince a few thousand staggling doubters. It was very close.

Quite so. Comey's election-eve announcement was a calculated risk, with the intention of making the "investigation" of Clinton look legitimate and professional, not just lip service to troublesome legalities. It was intended to produce a public reaction like "Oh, they double-checked like good investigators, and sure enough, Hillary's email operation was completely legit."

Done clumsily, and it backfired.

Aaron Burr , May 16, 2017 at 2:55 pm GMT

At what point does political infighting cross the line into treason?

There's a line somewhere between the two, obviously. Perhaps its when you break the law? Perhaps its when you leak classified documents? Or details of a key diplomatic meeting?

John Jeremiah Smith , May 16, 2017 at 2:56 pm GMT

@utu There will be no open coup. Trump will resign for health reason or in the worst case scenario will be declared unfit for health reasons. And Pence will give a speech how great Trump was and how great his ideas were and that now he as president will continue his vision. And many people will believe it.

Sam Shama , May 16, 2017 at 2:56 pm GMT

@iffen It's quite difficult to accept this line of thought when Comey practically scuppered Hillary's bid

There is reason to believe that Clinton's email troubles were having a major impact. Many were unconvinced by Comey's first pronouncement that there was no case there. (I thought this was the prosecutor's job anyway. People would have been skeptical of a compromised Lynch saying that there was no case, but might be persuaded by Comey.)

Reopening the investigation in a dramatic public manner (I guess we do tell who is under investigation) and then coming back to announce, "We were correct the first time; there is no case" might convince a few thousand staggling doubters. It was very close.

Philip Giraldi , May 16, 2017 at 3:33 pm GMT

@Sam Shama I need to understand why Phil Giraldi thinks she was considered a flawed candidate from the Deep State's perspective .

In the minds of non-mainstream writers who constantly viewed her as the embodiment of the Establishment, one wouldn't have wagered "their" perfect candidate to be marked for removal.

Joe Hide , May 16, 2017 at 3:42 pm GMT

It looks to me as though the "deep state" is getting progressive dementia. While inhabited by many high I.Q. players, their moves are increasingly insane. They had assumed their "Surveillance State" would become all intrusive, giving them ever greater control over us peasants. The reverse has happened, where most of the 7 billion of us have cell phones that record and display all their nefarious deeds. We have a million times more high I.Q. people than them, that increasingly are waking up and exposing those psychopaths for the pieces of garbage that they are.

iffen , May 16, 2017 at 3:59 pm GMT

@Sam Shama I need to understand why Phil Giraldi thinks she was considered a flawed candidate from the Deep State's perspective .

In the minds of non-mainstream writers who constantly viewed her as the embodiment of the Establishment, one wouldn't have wagered "their" perfect candidate to be marked for removal.

John Jeremiah Smith , May 16, 2017 at 4:03 pm GMT

@utu

Comey's election-eve announcement was a calculated risk, with the intention of making the "investigation" of Clinton look legitimate and professional, not just lip service to troublesome legalities.
No. They knew then that election could not be stolen (for whatever reasons) for Clinton. The 28th October announcement by Comey was the signal to press to change the fake narrative of huge advantage in polls by Hillary and prepare the eventual excuse for Hillary why she lost.
Boris M Garsky , May 16, 2017 at 5:03 pm GMT

Comey was abruptly and unceremoniously fired after he stated that Clinton had forwarded thousands of e-mails containing classified information on an unsecured server to wiener and friends. Hardly covering Clintons back. The FBI investigates -- it does not prosecute -- that is the function of the attorney generals office. The AG solely has the power to convene a grand jury, not the FBI. The deputy attorney general Rosenstein writes a scathing report and recommendation to fire Comey. Trump, probably on Kushner's urging fires Comey. Comey redacts his prior statement.

My guess is that the FBI were very close to the neocons hidden secret -- Clinton and its foundation are foreign assets and not of Russia, hence, we have the Russia-gate diversion. Unfortunately, Comey;s replacement will be toothless, merely a shelf ornament. And what happened? We hear no more of Kushners? omitting his relationship to the Rothchilds enterprises. Flynn was fired for far less. Is/ are Kushner? and/ or Rosenstein the leak(s)?

WorkingClass , May 16, 2017 at 5:52 pm GMT

The people pushing the big lie about Trump and Russia are legion. And they are not stupid. They are evil. They are the same people who are preparing a preemptive nuclear attack against Russia and China. They are the globalists who would institute a universal Feudalism from which there would be no escape. I have no further use for Trump. But his enemies remain enemies of the people.

[May 23, 2017] The speed of explanation might well be a useful False Flag indicator. For a False Flag to work, it cant have alternative perpetrators or confusion as to who did what. The story has to be presented fully formed and at high volume right from the start

Notable quotes:
"... nowadays my default position is to assume it's a false flag/hoax and wait for the Grassy Knollers to arrive and dismantle the narrative. ..."
"... I've also come to the understanding that the most salient point of these events is the exploitation that now inevitably follows. The manner, method, and speed with which the soon-to-follow attempt at exploitation propagates is more interesting than the actual event. ..."
May 23, 2017 | www.unz.com

Miro23 , May 23, 2017 at 6:25 am GMT

@Erebus WND has a good update on developments, even though it is "according to a WND source close to the situation."...
http://www.wnd.com/2017/05/bar-manager-cops-never-talked-with-staff-about-night-seth-rich-died/

The frustration in trying to figure out what is going on is that the world is now full of "sound and fury" signifying, not nothing but the frantic efforts by competing factions to control narratives. The noise is everywhere, all the time, and reading 30k words of crap to glean 1k words of plausibility requires an ongoing investment that's difficult to maintain. So, I've taken a different tack...

Take the Manchester bomb last night. Too early, and too little info for me to come to any sort of conclusion, but nowadays my default position is to assume it's a false flag/hoax and wait for the Grassy Knollers to arrive and dismantle the narrative. Right or wrong, they provide an invaluable yeoman's service in ferreting out what really happened.

I've also come to the understanding that the most salient point of these events is the exploitation that now inevitably follows. The manner, method, and speed with which the soon-to-follow attempt at exploitation propagates is more interesting than the actual event. It's the "Why?" behind the "How?". So, I'll wait to see whether the West should "Bomb Iran/Syria/Yemen!", or if "The Russians did it!" after all. Maybe it was the "Brexit" supporters, or the "Bremains". I don't know at this point, but it will clear up soon. 19-20 dead, so this is big enough to set the stage for somebody's meme.

Apropos the Seth Rich/email saga...

I was excitedly directed to a poster who appeared on 4Chan recently, claiming to be the ER surgeon on duty when Rich was brought in. The poster says the wounds were not life threatening, gives some details of his/her treatment of Rich's routine abdominal gunshot wounds, and weaves a coherent, professional sounding narrative about hospital routines and their disruption by Law Enforcement. All quite plausible, except for the fact that his/her timeline makes no sense, and contradicts what is officially known. Also, (s)he'd be trivial to identify, so why bother with anonymity? IOW, probably a provocation, so I wasted half an hour finding and reading it.

[May 23, 2017] The recent news as for Rich Seth murder might take Trump probe in a somewhat different direction and put additional pressure of neoliberal, Pelosi-Clinton part of the party leadership

Notable quotes:
"... the recent news as for Rich Seth murder might take Trump probe in a somewhat different direction and put additional pressure of neoliberal, Pelosi-Clinton part of the party leadership. If half of what was recently reported is true, Clapper-Brennan "Intelligence assessment" looks more and more like Warren Commission report. ..."
"... ... Then, Newt Gingrich, on Fox News, says: " (Rich) was assassinated at 4 in the morning after having giving Wikileaks something like 53,000 emails and 17,000 attachments. Nobody's investigating that. And what does that tell you about what is going on?" ..."
May 23, 2017 | economistsview.typepad.com
RGC -> Fred C. Dobbs, May 23, 2017 at 08:27 AM
If Trump goes, Pence becomes president.

Pence is worse than Trump. And he is more likely to get two terms.

In the meantime, nothing gets fixed.

Anyone who wants single-payer, better jobs, etc. should focus on the 2018 elections and work for people who can oust people like Nancy Pelosi in the primaries and Republicans in the general.

libezkova, May 23, 2017 at 08:52 AM

"Pence is worse than Trump. And he is more likely to get two terms.In the meantime, nothing gets fixed."

True. Also the recent news as for Rich Seth murder might take Trump probe in a somewhat different direction and put additional pressure of neoliberal, Pelosi-Clinton part of the party leadership. If half of what was recently reported is true, Clapper-Brennan "Intelligence assessment" looks more and more like Warren Commission report.

http://dianawest.net/Home/tabid/36/EntryId/3559/A-Seth-Rich-Chronology-Part-1.aspx

Also at

http://www.unz.com/mwhitney/seth-rich-craig-murray-and-the-sinister-stewards-of-the-national-security-state/#comment-1880788

... Then, Newt Gingrich, on Fox News, says: " (Rich) was assassinated at 4 in the morning after having giving Wikileaks something like 53,000 emails and 17,000 attachments. Nobody's investigating that. And what does that tell you about what is going on?"

Well, we know that Kim's chances of attracting Congressional interest was just about nil, but then Sean Hannity invited Dotcom to discuss his evidence in the Seth Rich case on his shows.

Stay tuned. Public invitation Kim Dotcom to be a guest on radio and TV. #GameChanger Buckle up destroy Trump media. Sheep that u all are!!! https://t.co/3qLwXCGl6z

- Sean Hannity (@seanhannity) May 20, 2017

Most recently, he tweeted:

Complete panic has set in at the highest levels of the Democratic Party. Any bets when the kitchen sink is dumped on my head?? https://t.co/Zt2gIX4zyq
- Sean Hannity (@seanhannity) May 22, 2017

[May 23, 2017] Clapper intelligence assessment sounds a little bit like the Warren Commission and 9/11 Commission

May 23, 2017 | www.unz.com

Carroll Price , May 22, 2017 at 11:42 pm GMT

.Director of National Intelligence James Clapper explained in his testimony that two dozen or so "seasoned experts" were "handpicked" from the contributing agencies" and drafted the ICA "under the aegis of his former office" While Clapper claimed these analysts were given "complete independence" to reach their findings, he added that their conclusions "were thoroughly vetted and then approved by the directors of the three agencies and me."

Sounds a bit like the Warren Commission and 9/11 Commission, with both being presented with the results of what their investigation would uncover prior to any investigation taking place.

[May 23, 2017] The China-US Arms Race

May 23, 2017 | www.unz.com

US Nuclear Weapon Upgrade Program: "CBO estimates that nuclear forces will cost $348 billion between FY 2015 and FY 2024. Three independent estimates put the expected total cost over the next 30 years at as much as $1 trillion."

[aircarft carrier] The Gerald R. Ford, $12.8 billion + $4.7 billion R&D (estimated). The Navy wants ten.

Columbia , the Navy's upcoming new nukey-boomer, formerly ORP, Ohio Replacement Program. "The total lifecycle cost of the entire class is estimated at $347 billion.": Wikipedia

..." Trump's proposed increase in US military spending is almost as big as Russia's entire defense budget."

aceofspades , May 18, 2017 at 8:55 pm GMT

Well, this is very ironic. Back in the 1980′s, the Soviets spent a massive amount of money on their military to keep up with America, and this ended up bankrupting them and causing their collapse. Now the US of A is spending a horrific amount of money on their military, despite the fact we are 20 trillion dollars in debt. Not to mention that fact that we need to rebuild our infrastructure and pay off all the people on welfare and government benefits. 20 trillion will become 30 trillion, which will be 40 trillion ..whats the end game?

anon , May 19, 2017 at 3:12 am GMT

@aceofspades Well, this is very ironic. Back in the 1980's, the Soviets spent a massive amount of money on their military to keep up with America, and this ended up bankrupting them and causing their collapse. Now the US of A is spending a horrific amount of money on their military, despite the fact we are 20 trillion dollars in debt. Not to mention that fact that we need to rebuild our infrastructure and pay off all the people on welfare and government benefits. 20 trillion will become 30 trillion, which will be 40 trillion.....whats the end game?

athEIst , May 19, 2017 at 5:32 am GMT

@aceofspades Well, this is very ironic. Back in the 1980's, the Soviets spent a massive amount of money on their military to keep up with America, and this ended up bankrupting them and causing their collapse. Now the US of A is spending a horrific amount of money on their military, despite the fact we are 20 trillion dollars in debt. Not to mention that fact that we need to rebuild our infrastructure and pay off all the people on welfare and government benefits. 20 trillion will become 30 trillion, which will be 40 trillion.....whats the end game?

dfordoom , Website May 20, 2017 at 2:42 pm GMT

The aircraft relies on the assumption that, in thirteen years when it enters service, anti-stealth technology will not have reached the point of making it even more obviously useless.

The purpose of this sort of technology is to make lots and lots of money for the right people. Whether it works or not is entirely irrelevant.

dfordoom , Website May 20, 2017 at 2:51 pm GMT

@Sunbeam One thing I'm waiting to see is when non-American culture producers start to beat Americans.

Bollywood is gigantic. And has a huge presence in parts of Asia.

There used to be Hong Kong Cinema. Not sure what happened to it. Successful, but not on the scale of Star Wars or The Fast And The Furious or something.

Brazilian T&A soap operas are spreading around the world.

K-Pop is doing the same.

Japanese Anime and Manga, maybe the odd pop star, is worldwide now as well.

But one day we are going to see that the past year's biggest movie worldwide was made in Bollywood or China.

I'm a nationalist, but I will absolutely cheer as the first nail goes in Hollywood's coffin.

Running rabbit , May 23, 2017 at 9:24 am GMT

As someone who has travelled to the US and China (Beijing), I was astounded by how advanced China's infrastructure was to that of the US. Subways, freight trains, highways, airports, bridges you name it. The investment is still on going and only really been going on for 25 or so years. I had the feeling in the US things were being neglected. Also China is almost unbelievably safe walking the streets. Everybody behaved like mature adults. No forty year olds who dressed like teenagers, in fact most of the teenagers dressed like forty year olds should. Infrastructure is critical to a modern society, the military merely protects it. Economy is the source of viable military spending, not the other way around.

Z-man , May 23, 2017 at 12:40 pm GMT

This marvelous revelation from Wikipedia: "In July 2016, the U.S. Air Force stated they would not release the estimated cost for the B-21 contract with Northrop Grumman. The Air Force argued releasing the cost would reveal too much information about the classified project to potential adversaries." As, for example, taxpayers.

Hilarious and unfortunately true.

Erebus , May 23, 2017 at 12:41 pm GMT

@The Alarmist


"The aircraft relies on the assumption that, in thirteen years when it enters service, anti-stealth technology will not have reached the point of making it even more obviously useless."
It will still be good for terrorizing ... sorry ... for policing rogue states like N. Korea, Serbia, Yemen, and Syria.

[May 23, 2017] Why America Can't Do What It Wants to Stop Assad The National Interest Blog

May 23, 2017 | nationalinterest.org
0x7be 6 days ago US has already did what it wanted - destroyed Iraq and Lybia and prompted the spawning of ISIS. Do we really need one more try? see more 11 Reply Share › + R. Arandas 6 days ago Assad is not a saint by any means, but the West has been consistently supporting the Syrian rebels against his regime, and the civil war has only worsened and intensified in the years since. We need to stay out of the Middle East. see more 8 Reply Share › + wootendw R. Arandas "Assad is not a saint..."

No, he is not a saint but he is a far more decent person than most members of Congress or any of the previous four presidents. Assad is not a dictator. He has been elected at least twice, most recently in 2014. Last April (2015) elections were held to Syria's parliament and Assad's party won a comfortable majority.

Assad is an Alawite and an ophthalmologist but his highly educated British wife is a Sunni in a country where Sunnis are in the majority. Most Sunnis in Syria support their leaders as do Christians and Assad's fellow Alawite. Both husband and wife speak multiple foreign languages and could live comfortably in many countries. They committed themselves to reforming Syria and, if they were to go into exile as the US government wants, abandoning their people, tens of thousands more Syrians would be slaughtered but the US government would blame Assad.

The West opposes Assad not because he is bad but because he is good. It truly hurts 'our' foreign policy establishment for a backward country like Syria to have a president more intelligent and more decent than our own leaders. That's why they want to destroy him. chris chuba 4 days ago I'm glad the posters here aren't buying it. The State Dept. state had the usual weasel words 'probably' and couldn't deny that it might just be a heating system. Snow melt proves it's a crematorium? Since we have fancy infrared satellites, how about showing pictures of it operating during summertime, that would be suspicious, not snowmelt.

Ah .. but crematorium conjures up images of the Holocaust which is etched into our psyche for the information war against the Assad govt. see more

5 Reply Share › Comments continue after advertisement + Dennis Boylon 5 days ago Anti Assad proganda from US war mongers. We heard all this BS before. Nobody is buying it. I hope Assad stays in power and protects his country from the destruction seen in Iraq and Libya. see more 4 Reply Share › + Paul Zx 6 days ago Syrian war is like any other war, from atrocities against civilians to third parties involvement. Nothing new here. see more 3

[May 23, 2017] Seth Rich, Craig Murray and the Sinister Stewards of the National Security State by Mike Whitney

Notable quotes:
"... Repeat: "A politicized analysis that violated normal rules for crafting intelligence assessments." That says it all, doesn't it? ..."
"... Comey is a vicious political opportunist who doesn't mind breaking a few legs if it'll advance his career plans. I wouldn't trust the man as far as I could throw him. Which isn't far. ..."
"... Comey was a participant in the intelligence gathering for political purposes ..."
"... Are we suggesting that the heads of the so called Intelligence Community are at war with the Trump Administration and paving the way for impeachment proceedings? ..."
"... Yep, we sure are. The Russia hacking fiasco is a regime change operation no different than the CIA's 50-or-so other oustings in the last 70 years. The only difference is that this operation is on the home field which is why everyone is so flustered. These things are only suppose to happen in those "other" countries. ..."
"... Trump might be the worst US president of all time, in fact, he probably is. But that doesn't mean there aren't other nefarious forces at work behind the smokescreen of democratic government. There are. In fact, this whole flap suggests that there's an alternate power-structure that operates completely off the public's radar and has the elected-government in its death-grip. This largely invisible group of elites controls the likes of Brennan, Clapper and Comey. And, apparently, they have enough influence to challenge and maybe even remove an elected president from office. (We'll see.) ..."
"... This is a coup. We are now officially Turkey, where the secret police and the army high command feel entitled to 'vet' our elected leaders, and overthrow them if they deem it necessary. ..."
"... sadly mike we are witnessing the several thousand strong bipartisan establishment rather destroy the united states as a governable nation instead of reforming themselves by putting the country first instead of their own venal interest. ..."
"... The Rich family now has a DNC operative as their spokesperson, who is representing the family pro bono. ..."
"... Though never a Trump fan, I am becoming increasingly sympathetic to his plight. More and more, this is taking on the trappings of a coup d'etat. ..."
"... Well, I'm pretty convinced they removed 2 presidents in my lifetime. The first with extreme prejudice, namely JFK, and the 2nd somewhat less extremely, namely Nixon. They then gave Reagan & Clinton a damn good scare and forced them to come around to seeing the world as they wanted it seen. ..."
"... Frankly, I am greatly heartened by this recent brouhaha. That "invisible group" are outing themselves. By the ferocity and volume of their totally overblown, caricaturized(sp?) accusations, they're making their existence and program pretty plain to alert citizens, and by continuing along this path they'll cause more and more of the inattentive to awaken. Now, even the likes of CNBC are suggesting that the assault on Trump looks more like a coup than partisan political infighting. ..."
"... They're in the process of transforming themselves from subjects of conspiracy theories, to mainstream political players. Maybe it's sooner than planned, and perhaps a little more chaotically than they would have wished, but the combination of geopolitical & economic/financial pressures with the rise of the Trumpian Deplorables has forced their hand. Should they ever get to end of that process, America will be indistinguishable from Orwell's Oceania. The question is what can stop them? ..."
"... Right; (((Big Media))) and the ruling class are spending a Hell of a lot of legitimacy on the campaign against Trump. And they've been bleeding legitimacy for years as it was. ..."
"... The author says that if he worked for media or FBI he'd be beating the bushes. Nope. Simple logic. If the Russian hacking version is true, there's no reason to beat the bushes. Everything coming out of media and FBI is true. ..."
"... If it's not true, then Seth Rich was killed by the Clintons, which is consistent with a 40 year history of Clinton mafia action. If you work in media or FBI, you KNOW FOR SURE that the Clintons kill their enemies. You don't want to die, so you go along with the official line. ..."
"... All the neocons/SJW/neoliberals (pretty much all the same thing now) don't believe in a nation yet they still believe in "national security", I don't think it will be too long until the term is replaced with a more acceptable (according to them) "global security". ..."
"... But isn't the time now to drain this swamp? Why wait? I mean, we live in a dictatorship. Our liberty has been stripped away. We have nothing left. The future for our children is grim. How much longer will the Jews and the elites and the banksters strong arm us into submission? I keep hearing how our overlords are hell bent on eradicating the white race, and that we are well on our way to becoming Brazil. What awakening will it take for YOU to leave your armchair and become a warrior? ..."
"... It is incomprehensible to me why USA citizens who want the truth bother with details since Sept 11. Anyone with the guts to see through propaganda now knows what USA politicians and media are capable of. Even those who refuse to see Sept 11 for what it is, must see the mess the USA created, still creates, in Middle East, and North Africa, soon also in middle Africa, when the drone base in Nigeria will be in operation. ..."
"... It is quite possible that Russia tried to influence USA elections, as Obama did with the French. The difference is only that the USA is entitled to do such things, but not Russia. ..."
"... It looks like CNN Has tried to pull the wool over our eyes once again. This time, they used a screenshot from the Fallout 4 Video game to paint the picture of Russian Hacking. To bad that's not what a real hacking screen looks like. And an image you will only find in the video game! ..."
"... December 28, 2016 OUTRAGEOUS: Election hacks traced back to Obama's Department of Homeland Security ..."
"... Rick Falkvinge, founder of the original pirate party and head of privacy at PrivateInternetAccess com, joins us to discuss his recent article, "Today, the FBI becomes the enemy of every computer user and every IT security professional worldwide." ..."
www.zerohedge.com

May 22, 2017 | www.unz.com

Why is it a "conspiracy theory" to think that a disgruntled Democratic National Committee staffer gave WikiLeaks the DNC emails, but not a conspiracy theory to think the emails were provided by Russia?

Why?

Which is the more likely scenario: That a frustrated employee leaked damaging emails to embarrass his bosses or a that foreign government hacked DNC computers for some still-unknown reason?

That's a no-brainer, isn't it?

Former-DNC employee, Seth Rich, not only had access to the emails, but also a motive. He was pissed about the way the Clinton crowd was "sandbagging" Bernie Sanders. In contrast, there's neither evidence nor motive connecting Russia to the emails. On top of that, WikiLeaks founder, Julien Assange (a man of impeccable integrity) has repeatedly denied that Russia gave him the emails which suggests the government investigation is completely misdirected. The logical course of action, would be to pursue the leads that are most likely to bear fruit, not those that originate from one's own political bias. But, of course, logic has nothing to do with the current investigation, it's all about politics and geopolitics.

We don't know who killed Seth Rich and we're not going to speculate on the matter here. But we find it very strange that neither the media nor the FBI have pursued leads in the case that challenge the prevailing narrative on the Russia hacking issue. Why is that? Why is the media so eager to blame Russia when Rich looks like the much more probable suspect?

And why have the mainstream news organizations put so much energy into discrediting the latest Fox News report, when– for the last 10 months– they've showed absolutely zero interest in Rich's death at all?

According to Fox News:

"The Democratic National Committee staffer who was gunned down on July 10 on a Washington, D.C., street just steps from his home had leaked thousands of internal emails to WikiLeaks, law enforcement sources told Fox News.

A federal investigator who reviewed an FBI forensic report detailing the contents of DNC staffer Seth Rich's computer generated within 96 hours after his murder, said Rich made contact with WikiLeaks through Gavin MacFadyen, a now-deceased American investigative reporter, documentary filmmaker, and director of WikiLeaks who was living in London at the time .

Rod Wheeler, a retired Washington homicide detective and Fox News contributor investigating the case on behalf of the Rich family, made the WikiLeaks claim, which was corroborated by a federal investigator who spoke to Fox News .

"I have seen and read the emails between Seth Rich and Wikileaks," the federal investigator told Fox News, confirming the MacFadyen connection. He said the emails are in possession of the FBI, while the stalled case is in the hands of the Washington Police Department." ("Family of slain DNC staffer Seth Rich blasts detective over report of WikiLeaks link", Fox News)

Okay, so where's the computer? Who's got Rich's computer? Let's do the forensic work and get on with it.

But the Washington Post and the other bogus news organizations aren't interested in such matters because it doesn't fit with their political agenda. They'd rather take pot-shots at Fox for running an article that doesn't square with their goofy Russia hacking story. This is a statement on the abysmal condition of journalism today. Headline news has become the province of perception mandarins who use the venue to shape information to their own malign specifications, and any facts that conflict with their dubious storyline, are savagely attacked and discredited. Journalists are no longer investigators that keep the public informed, but paid assassins who liquidate views that veer from the party-line.

WikiLeaks never divulges the names of the people who provide them with information. Even so, Assange has not only shown an active interest in the Seth Rich case, but also offered a $20,000 reward for anyone providing information leading to the arrest and conviction of Rich's murder. Why? And why did he post a link to the Fox News article on his Twitter account on Tuesday?

I don't know, but if I worked for the FBI or the Washington Post, I'd sure as hell be beating the bushes to find out. And not just because it might help in Rich's murder investigation, but also, because it could shed light on the Russia fiasco which is being used to lay the groundwork for impeachment proceedings. So any information that challenges the government version of events, could actually change the course of history.

Have you ever heard of Craig Murray?

Murray should be the government's star witness in the DNC hacking scandal, instead, no one even knows who he is. But if we trust what Murray has to say, then we can see that the Russia hacking story is baloney. The emails were "leaked" by insiders not "hacked" by a foreign government. Here's the scoop from Robert Parry at Consortium News:

"Former British Ambassador to Uzbekistan Craig Murray, has suggested that the DNC leak came from a "disgruntled" Democrat upset with the DNC's sandbagging of the Sanders campaign and that the Podesta leak came from the U.S. intelligence community .He (Murray) appears to have undertaken a mission for WikiLeaks to contact one of the sources (or a representative) during a Sept. 25 visit to Washington where he says he met with a person in a wooded area of American University. .

Though Murray has declined to say exactly what the meeting in the woods was about, he may have been passing along messages about ways to protect the source from possible retaliation, maybe even an extraction plan if the source was in some legal or physical danger Murray also suggested that the DNC leak and the Podesta leak came from two different sources, neither of them the Russian government.

"The Podesta emails and the DNC emails are, of course, two separate things and we shouldn't conclude that they both have the same source," Murray said. "In both cases we're talking of a leak, not a hack, in that the person who was responsible for getting that information out had legal access to that information

Scott Horton then asked, "Is it fair to say that you're saying that the Podesta leak came from inside the intelligence services, NSA [the electronic spying National Security Agency] or another agency?"

"I think what I said was certainly compatible with that kind of interpretation, yeah," Murray responded. "In both cases they are leaks by Americans."

("A Spy Coup in America?", Robert Parry, Consortium News)

With all the hullabaloo surrounding the Russia hacking case, you'd think that Murray's eyewitness account would be headline news, but not in Homeland Amerika where the truth is kept as far from the front page as humanly possible.

Bottom line: The government has a reliable witness (Murray) who can positively identify the person who hacked the DNC emails and, so far, they've showed no interest in his testimony at all. Doesn't that strike you as a bit weird?

Did you know that after a 10 month-long investigation, there's still no hard evidence that Russia hacked the 2016 elections? In fact, when the Intelligence agencies were pressed on the matter, they promised to release a report that would provide iron-clad proof of Russian meddling. On January 6, 2017, theDirector of National Intelligence, James Clapper, released that report. It was called The Intelligence Community Assessment (ICA). Unfortunately, the report fell far-short of the public's expectations. Instead of a smoking gun, Clapper produced a tedious 25-page compilation of speculation, hearsay, innuendo and gobbledygook. Here's how veteran journalist Robert Parry summed it up:

"The report contained no direct evidence that Russia delivered hacked emails from the Democratic National Committee and Hillary Clinton's campaign chairman John Podesta to WikiLeaks .The DNI report as presented, is one-sided and lacks any actual proof. Further, the continued use of the word "assesses" .suggests that the underlying classified information also may be less than conclusive because, in intelligence-world-speak, "assesses" often means "guesses." ("US Report Still Lacks Proof on Russia 'Hack'", Robert Parry, Consortium News)

Repeat: "the report contained no direct evidence", no "actual proof", and a heckuva a lot of "guessing". That's some "smoking gun", eh?

If this 'thin gruel' sounds like insufficient grounds for removing a sitting president and his administration, that's because it is. But the situation is even worse than it looks, mainly because the information in the assessment is not reliable. The ICA was corrupted by higher-ups in the Intel food-chain who selected particular analysts who could be trusted to produce a document that served their broader political agenda. Think I'm kidding? Take a look at this excerpt from an article at Fox News:

"On January 6, 2017, the U.S. Intelligence Community issued an "Intelligence Community Assessment" (ICA) that found Russia deliberately interfered in the 2016 presidential election to benefit Trump's candidacy (but) there are compelling reasons to believe this ICA was actually a politicized analysis that violated normal rules for crafting intelligence assessments to ensure this one reached the bottom line conclusion that the Obama administration was looking for.

.Director of National Intelligence James Clapper explained in his testimony that two dozen or so "seasoned experts" were "handpicked" from the contributing agencies" and drafted the ICA "under the aegis of his former office" While Clapper claimed these analysts were given "complete independence" to reach their findings, he added that their conclusions "were thoroughly vetted and then approved by the directors of the three agencies and me."

This process drastically differed from the Intelligence Community's normal procedures. Hand-picking a handful of analysts from just three intelligence agencies to write such a controversial assessment went against standing rules to vet such analyses throughout the Intelligence Community within its existing structure. The idea of using hand-picked intelligence analysts selected through some unknown process to write an assessment on such a politically sensitive topic carries a strong stench of politicization .

A major problem with this process is that it gave John Brennan, CIA's hyper-partisan former director, enormous influence over the drafting of the ICA. Given Brennan's scathing criticism of Mr. Trump before and after the election, he should have had no role whatsoever in the drafting of this assessment. Instead, Brennan probably selected the CIA analysts who worked on the ICA and reviewed and approved their conclusions .

The unusual way that the January 6, 2017 Intelligence Community Assessment was drafted raises major questions as to whether it was rigged by the Obama administration to produce conclusions that would discredit the election outcome and Mr. Trump's presidency ."

("More indications Intel assessment of Russian interference in election was rigged", Fox News)

Repeat: "A politicized analysis that violated normal rules for crafting intelligence assessments." That says it all, doesn't it?

Let's take a minute and review the main points in the article:

1–Was the Intelligence Community Assessment the summary work of all 17 US Intelligence Agencies?

No, it was not. "In his May 8 testimony to a Senate Judiciary subcommittee hearing, Clapper confirmed (that) the ICA reflected the views of only three intelligence agencies - CIA, NSA and FBI – not all 17."

2–Did any of the analysts challenge the findings in the ICA?

No, the document failed to acknowledge any dissenting views, which suggests that the analysts were screened in order to create consensus.

3– Were particular analysts chosen to produce the ICA?

Yes, they were "handpicked from the contributing agencies" and drafted the ICA "under the aegis of his former office" (the Office of the Director of National Intelligence.)

4– Was their collaborative work released to the public in its original form?

No, their conclusions "were thoroughly vetted and then approved by the directors of the three agencies and me." (Clapper) This of course suggests that the document was political in nature and crafted to deliver a particular message.

5–Were Clapper's methods "normal" by Intelligence agency standards?

Definitely not. "This process drastically differed from the Intelligence Community's normal procedures."

6–Are Clapper and Brennan partisans who have expressed their opposition to Trump many times in the past calling into question their ability to be objective in executing their duties as heads of their respective agencies?

Absolutely. Check out this clip from Monday's Arkansas online:

"I think, in many ways, our institutions are under assault, both externally - and that's the big news here, is the Russian interference in our election system," said James Clapper, the former director of national intelligence. "I think as well our institutions are under assault internally."

When he was asked, "Internally, from the president?" Clapper said, "Exactly." (Clapper calls Trump democracy assailant", arkansasonline)

Brennan has made numerous similar statements. (Note: It is particularly jarring that Clapper– who oversaw the implementation of the modern surveillance police state– feels free to talk about "the assault on our institutions.")

7–Does the ICA prove that anyone on the Trump campaign colluded with Russia or that Russia meddled in the 2016 elections?

No, it doesn't. What it shows is that –even while Clapper and Brennan may have been trying to produce an assessment that would 'kill two birds with one stone', (incriminate Russia and smear Trump at the same time) the ICA achieved neither. So far, there's no proof of anything. Now take a look at this list I found in an article at The American Thinker:

"12 prominent public statements by those on both sides of the aisle who reviewed the evidence or been briefed on it confirmed there was no evidence of Russia trying to help Trump in the election or colluding with him:

The New York Times (Nov 1, 2016);
House Speaker Paul Ryan (Feb, 26, 2017);
Former DNI James Clapper , March 5, 2017);
Devin Nunes Chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, March 20, 2017);
James Comey, March 20, 2017;
Rep. Chris Stewart, House Intelligence Committee, March 20, 2017;
Rep. Adam Schiff, House Intelligence committee, April 2, 2017);
Senator Dianne Feinstein, Senate Intelligence Committee, May 3, 2017);
Sen. Joe Manchin Senate Intelligence Committee, May 8, 2017;
James Clapper (again) (May 8, 2017);
Rep. Maxine Waters, May 9, 2017);
President Donald Trump,(May 9, 2017).
Senator Grassley, Chairman of the Senate Judiciary committee, indicated that his briefing confirmed Dianne Feinstein's view that the President was not under investigation for colluding with the Russians."
("Russian Hacking and Collusion: Put the Cards on the Table", American Thinker)

Keep in mind, this is a list of the people who actually "reviewed the evidence", and even they are not convinced. It just goes to show that the media blitz is not based on any compelling proof, but on the determination of behind-the-scenes elites who want to destroy their political rivals. Isn't that what's really going on?

How does former FBI Director James Comey fit into all this?

First of all, we need to set the record straight on Comey so readers don't get the impression that he's the devoted civil servant and all-around stand-up guy he's made out to be in the media. Here's a short clip from an article by Human Rights First that will help to put things into perspective:

"Five former FBI agents raised concerns about his (Comey's) support for a legal memorandum justifying torture and his defense of holding an American citizen indefinitely without charge. They note that Comey concurred with a May 10, 2005, Office of Legal Counsel opinion that authorized torture. While the agents credited Comey for opposing torture tactics in combination and on policy grounds, they note that Comey still approved the legal basis for use of specific torture tactics.

"These techniques include cramped confinement, wall-standing, water dousing, extended sleep deprivation, and waterboarding, all of which constitute torture or cruel, inhuman, or degrading treatment in contravention of domestic and international law," the letter states.

Those signing the letter to the committee also objected to Comey's defense of detaining Americans without charge or trial and observed, "Further, Mr. Comey vigorously defended the Bush administration's decision to hold Jose Padilla, a United States citizen apprehended on U.S. soil, indefinitely without charge or trial for years in a military brig in Charleston, South Carolina." ("FBI Agents Urge Senate Judiciary Committee to Question Comey on Torture, Indefinite Detention", Human Rights First)

Get the picture?

Comey is a vicious political opportunist who doesn't mind breaking a few legs if it'll advance his career plans. I wouldn't trust the man as far as I could throw him. Which isn't far.

American Thinker's Clarice Feldman explains why Comey launched his counter-intel investigation in July 2016 but failed to notify Congress until March 2017, a full eight months later. Here's what she said:

"There is only one reasonable explanation for FBI Director James Comey to be launching a counter-intel investigation in July 2016, notifying the White House and Clapper, and keeping it under wraps from congress. Comey was a participant in the intelligence gathering for political purposes - wittingly, or unwittingly." ("Russian Hacking and Collusion: Put the Cards on the Table", American Thinker)

Are we suggesting that the heads of the so called Intelligence Community are at war with the Trump Administration and paving the way for impeachment proceedings?

Yep, we sure are. The Russia hacking fiasco is a regime change operation no different than the CIA's 50-or-so other oustings in the last 70 years. The only difference is that this operation is on the home field which is why everyone is so flustered. These things are only suppose to happen in those "other" countries.

Does this analysis make me a Donald Trump supporter?

Never. The idea is ridiculous. Trump might be the worst US president of all time, in fact, he probably is. But that doesn't mean there aren't other nefarious forces at work behind the smokescreen of democratic government. There are. In fact, this whole flap suggests that there's an alternate power-structure that operates completely off the public's radar and has the elected-government in its death-grip. This largely invisible group of elites controls the likes of Brennan, Clapper and Comey. And, apparently, they have enough influence to challenge and maybe even remove an elected president from office. (We'll see.)

American history is not silent about the proclivities of unchecked security forces, a short list of which includes the Palmer Raids, the FBI's blackmailing of civil rights leaders, Army surveillance of the antiwar movement, the NSA's watch lists, and the CIA's waterboarding. . Who would trust the authors of past episodes of repression as a reliable safeguard against future repression?"

("Security Breach– Trump's tussle with the bureaucratic state", Michael J. Glennon, Harper's Magazine)

"Who?"

The Democrats, that's who.

MIKE WHITNEY lives in Washington state. He is a contributor to Hopeless: Barack Obama and the Politics of Illusion (AK Press). Hopeless is also available in a Kindle edition . He can be reached at fergiewhitney@msn.com .

Mark Caplan , Website May 19, 2017 at 1:47 pm GMT

Since that Fox News blockbuster report, the Rich-family private investigator, Rod Wheeler, has disavowed and retracted the claims he had made earlier about Rich's contacts with WikiLeaks. So that's the end of that. The Rich family now has a DNC operative as their spokesperson, who is representing the family pro bono.

Seamus Padraig , May 19, 2017 at 1:47 pm GMT

This is a coup. We are now officially Turkey, where the secret police and the army high command feel entitled to 'vet' our elected leaders, and overthrow them if they deem it necessary.

In case there was any doubt, the constitution is now officially dead. We are a dictatorship run by the deep state.

The Alarmist , May 19, 2017 at 7:42 pm GMT

As to, "Where are the journalists?" there was a classified annex to the PATRIOT that outlawed journalism. That's why you haven't seen any in the US for years. They tried to spread its reach to the world by a secret annex to FATCA, but that effort has largely been limited to the wimps in Europe.

paraglider , May 19, 2017 at 10:01 pm GMT

sadly mike we are witnessing the several thousand strong bipartisan establishment rather destroy the united states as a governable nation instead of reforming themselves by putting the country first instead of their own venal interest.

imo its hopeless. within a decade or two the usa is done as a superpower perhaps even a nation of the first rank. the way washington projects its power is through the us dollar as reserve currency. for now there is no substitute.

once the dollar rallies strongly in the next few years as the euro project implodes and frightened money comes here looking for safety our exports from a high dollar will make for a profoundly deflationary evironment and doom our economy and with it out ability project power.

our military is already a bit of a joke capable of only defeating the semi disarmed and poorly led. against true adversaries like russia and china the pentagon won't even attempt a confrontation knowing they can not win.

forget the internecine warfare going on in america. it is cancer cells attacking the remnants of a healthy american host and the media opinion makers are rooting for cancer to win.

watch the dollar over the next few years as it rises in value our american future will grow dimmer. by 203? it will be lights here.

Antiwar7 , May 20, 2017 at 4:46 am GMT

@Mark Caplan Since that Fox News blockbuster report, the Rich-family private investigator, Rod Wheeler, has disavowed and retracted the claims he had made earlier about Rich's contacts with WikiLeaks. So that's the end of that. The Rich family now has a DNC operative as their spokesperson, who is representing the family pro bono.

anonymous , May 20, 2017 at 2:35 pm GMT

Though never a Trump fan, I am becoming increasingly sympathetic to his plight. More and more, this is taking on the trappings of a coup d'etat.

Erebus , May 20, 2017 at 4:17 pm GMT

This largely invisible group of elites controls the likes of Brennan, Clapper and Comey. And, apparently, they have enough influence to challenge and maybe even remove an elected president from office. (We'll see.)

Well, I'm pretty convinced they removed 2 presidents in my lifetime. The first with extreme prejudice, namely JFK, and the 2nd somewhat less extremely, namely Nixon. They then gave Reagan & Clinton a damn good scare and forced them to come around to seeing the world as they wanted it seen.

Frankly, I am greatly heartened by this recent brouhaha. That "invisible group" are outing themselves. By the ferocity and volume of their totally overblown, caricaturized(sp?) accusations, they're making their existence and program pretty plain to alert citizens, and by continuing along this path they'll cause more and more of the inattentive to awaken. Now, even the likes of CNBC are suggesting that the assault on Trump looks more like a coup than partisan political infighting.

They're in the process of transforming themselves from subjects of conspiracy theories, to mainstream political players. Maybe it's sooner than planned, and perhaps a little more chaotically than they would have wished, but the combination of geopolitical & economic/financial pressures with the rise of the Trumpian Deplorables has forced their hand. Should they ever get to end of that process, America will be indistinguishable from Orwell's Oceania. The question is what can stop them?

Whether he won the popular vote or not, it is clear that Trump has a massive voter base that knows, however vaguely, that there is an Everglades' worth of something long past rotten in DC.

That base is growing, thanks in very large part to the invisible group's damn-the-torpedoes onslaught. I doubt the awakening is big enough today to put a million armed Deplorables on Capital Hill, but if these invisible elites continue to flounder like this, they may awaken just enough of the population to make that possible.

And then, the gates of hell break open in America.

Corvinus , May 20, 2017 at 5:00 pm GMT

@Seamus Padraig This is a coup. We are now officially Turkey, where the secret police and the army high command feel entitled to 'vet' our elected leaders, and overthrow them if they deem it necessary.

In case there was any doubt, the constitution is now officially dead. We are a dictatorship run by the deep state.

jakbit , May 20, 2017 at 5:41 pm GMT

are you and your readers following George Webb on youtube?

Svigor , May 20, 2017 at 7:55 pm GMT

Assuming this is the case, are you going to sit there and take it like an impotent chump? Or, since you are imprisoned in this cage, will you channel your inner white rage and lead the charge to rid yourself from those who control you?

Post your address, tough guy, and we'll find out.

Frankly, I am greatly heartened by this recent brouhaha. That "invisible group" are outing themselves. By the ferocity and volume of their totally overblown, caricaturized(sp?) accusations, they're making their existence and program pretty plain to alert citizens, and by continuing along this path they'll cause more and more of the inattentive to awaken. Now, even the likes of CNBC are suggesting that the assault on Trump looks more like a coup than partisan political infighting.

Right; (((Big Media))) and the ruling class are spending a Hell of a lot of legitimacy on the campaign against Trump. And they've been bleeding legitimacy for years as it was.

Whether he won the popular vote or not, it is clear that Trump has a massive voter base that knows, however vaguely, that there is an Everglades' worth of something long past rotten in DC.

I keep trying to explain this "popular vote" thing: The Electoral College system is essentially mandatory voting: every person casts a vote via the electoral college, whether they actually fill out a ballot or not. Choosing not to fill out a ballot is a vote for "I'll go with the majority's decision." The entire population of the United States of America is represented in this process: everyone is either a proxy (voter), or has his vote cast by a proxy.

The "popular vote" mantra is the scuzzbucket Democrat way of dismissing the legitimacy of the people who vote by proxy. It's Democrats' way of saying these people don't matter. And this from the party that claims to support mandatory voting!

The will of the people is expressed in the Electoral College. And in the 2016 election, that will very much favored Trump over Clinton.

Erebus , May 21, 2017 at 1:02 am GMT

@Corvinus "I doubt the awakening is big enough today to put a million armed Deplorables on Capital Hill, but if these invisible elites continue to flounder like this, they may awaken just enough of the population to make that possible."

But isn't the time now to drain this swamp? Why wait? I mean, we live in a dictatorship. Our liberty has been stripped away. We have nothing left. The future for our children is grim. How much longer will the Jews and the elites and the banksters strong arm us into submission? I keep hearing how our overlords are hell bent on eradicating the white race, and that we are well on our way to becoming Brazil. What awakening will it take for YOU to leave your armchair and become a warrior?

There are honestly serious questions. I would like to know your thoughts.

Svigor , May 21, 2017 at 12:37 pm GMT

As this seems to be addressed to me, I'll say that I did not misunderstand either the legal-constitutional concept of the Electoral College, or its workings. I know well that Trump won the election as defined by the American Constitution. Perhaps I should have said " won the popular vote count ".

As for "I'll go with the majority's decision.", that pretty much applies to any "first past the post" electoral system.

My point is that talk of "the popular vote" should be met with derision, not entertained or repeated.

Random Guy , May 21, 2017 at 9:42 pm GMT

I think your all crazy there. I was born in Canada of Scottish decent, and I won't go to the States anymore. You are a military dictatorship and gun worshipers. It's like being a dutch farmer hearing about the candle-light vigils of the NAZI's from Holland mid last century. I tell my family to stay away.

Willem Hendrik , May 21, 2017 at 10:09 pm GMT

America is too important to be left to Americans. You should be proud that others take an interest.

alexander , May 22, 2017 at 7:21 am GMT

@Carlton Meyer Private investigator Rod Wheeler made a few bucks doing an investigation, but soon realized that he stirred up a high-level hornets nest. Whoever killed Rich would not hesitate to threaten Wheeler or his family or his pension. Suddenly, Wheeler recants everything that he recently put in writing, with no explanation. Soon he will claim that he never did the investigation and has never even been to DC.

polistra , May 22, 2017 at 9:28 am GMT

The author says that if he worked for media or FBI he'd be beating the bushes. Nope. Simple logic. If the Russian hacking version is true, there's no reason to beat the bushes. Everything coming out of media and FBI is true.

If it's not true, then Seth Rich was killed by the Clintons, which is consistent with a 40 year history of Clinton mafia action. If you work in media or FBI, you KNOW FOR SURE that the Clintons kill their enemies. You don't want to die, so you go along with the official line.

Those are the two possibilities. Neither one leads to public exposure of truth.

neutral , May 22, 2017 at 11:08 am GMT

All the neocons/SJW/neoliberals (pretty much all the same thing now) don't believe in a nation yet they still believe in "national security", I don't think it will be too long until the term is replaced with a more acceptable (according to them) "global security".

neutral , May 22, 2017 at 11:18 am GMT

@Corvinus "I doubt the awakening is big enough today to put a million armed Deplorables on Capital Hill, but if these invisible elites continue to flounder like this, they may awaken just enough of the population to make that possible."

But isn't the time now to drain this swamp? Why wait? I mean, we live in a dictatorship. Our liberty has been stripped away. We have nothing left. The future for our children is grim. How much longer will the Jews and the elites and the banksters strong arm us into submission? I keep hearing how our overlords are hell bent on eradicating the white race, and that we are well on our way to becoming Brazil. What awakening will it take for YOU to leave your armchair and become a warrior?

There are honestly serious questions. I would like to know your thoughts.

jilles dykstra , May 22, 2017 at 11:34 am GMT

It is incomprehensible to me why USA citizens who want the truth bother with details since Sept 11. Anyone with the guts to see through propaganda now knows what USA politicians and media are capable of. Even those who refuse to see Sept 11 for what it is, must see the mess the USA created, still creates, in Middle East, and North Africa, soon also in middle Africa, when the drone base in Nigeria will be in operation.

It is quite possible that Russia tried to influence USA elections, as Obama did with the French. The difference is only that the USA is entitled to do such things, but not Russia.

I still hope that Trump wants good, normal, relations with Russia, as long as I can keep this hope, Deep State will try to remove Trump one way or another, and will continue the anti Russian propaganda. Once Trump is removed, the war can begin. As Sol Bloom, a friend of Roosevelt, writes in his memoirs, 'the great accomplishment of Roosevelt was to prepare the USA people slowly for war'. We now can write 'the great accomplishment of CNN, Washpost and NYT, is to prepare the USA people for war against Russia'.

jilles dykstra , May 22, 2017 at 11:37 am GMT

@Willem Hendrik America is too important to be left to Americans. You should be proud that others take an interest.

Anonymous White Male , May 22, 2017 at 1:07 pm GMT

"Trump might be the worst US president of all time, in fact, he probably is."

I am no fan of Trump, but how can anyone make such a statement concerning someone that has only been in office for 4 months? I have noticed Whitney's writing before. He has ridiculous comments inserted in with lucid ones. I wonder if his residence in Washington State is the cause of his delusions?

Che Guava , May 22, 2017 at 1:17 pm GMT

We are now officially Turkey, where the secret police and the army high command feel entitled to 'vet' our elected leaders, and overthrow them if they deem it necessary.

That statement is confused on so many levels. I haven't seen one convincing analysis of the recent failed coup in Turkey, but my impression is that they were Kemalists, wanting to get rid of Sultan Erdogan for very good reasons. Erdogan claims it was due to his fellow Islamist, Gulen. Point is, the coup was a massive failure, and almost certainly incited by those loyal to Erdogan, as a piece of theatre to maximise the vote for him in his referendum to assume despotic power.

He has sacked hundreds of thousands, military, judicial, and civil service, arrested tens of thousands, closed many educational institutions. None of that in the USA.

As a sympathizer with constitutionalist, freedom-loving, and oppressed USA people, it is clear that if Trump were at all sincere about his campaign promises, he needs to do a much better job of decapitating the political appointees in the civil service (unlike the victims in Turkey, no tears need be shed, they would all end up in other kinds of overly remunerated playtime).

He would do well to cut fed. money for the courses in culti-Marxi, etc., and to universities emphasizing that. Since none of that is going to happen (unfortunately) there may be another key factor. Turkey was best buddies with Israel for a long time, and almost has returned to that. They were never a colony of Israel. The USA is. Witness Prex Trump's craven obsequiousness right now (or in the last 24 hours). The tail that wags the dog, indeed.

Agent76 , May 22, 2017 at 1:35 pm GMT

Jan 2, 2017 BOOM! CNN Caught Using Video Game Image In Fake Russian Hacking Story

It looks like CNN Has tried to pull the wool over our eyes once again. This time, they used a screenshot from the Fallout 4 Video game to paint the picture of Russian Hacking. To bad that's not what a real hacking screen looks like. And an image you will only find in the video game!

December 28, 2016 OUTRAGEOUS: Election hacks traced back to Obama's Department of Homeland Security

In an unbelievable development that ought to outrage every single American, election officials in Georgia are essentially accusing the Obama administration of attempting to hack into the state's electronic balloting machines in what appears to be a naked political ploy.

http://www.newstarget.com/2016-12-28-election-hacks-traced-back-to-obamas-department-of-homeland-security.html

Agent76 , May 22, 2017 at 1:36 pm GMT

Jan 3, 2017 With Rule 41 the FBI Is Now Officially the Enemy of All Computer Users

Rick Falkvinge, founder of the original pirate party and head of privacy at PrivateInternetAccess com, joins us to discuss his recent article, "Today, the FBI becomes the enemy of every computer user and every IT security professional worldwide."

Erebus , May 22, 2017 at 1:51 pm GMT

@Carlton Meyer Private investigator Rod Wheeler made a few bucks doing an investigation, but soon realized that he stirred up a high-level hornets nest. Whoever killed Rich would not hesitate to threaten Wheeler or his family or his pension. Suddenly, Wheeler recants everything that he recently put in writing, with no explanation. Soon he will claim that he never did the investigation and has never even been to DC.

Che Guava , May 22, 2017 at 3:20 pm GMT

Must adding, another very good article from Mike Whitney.

Assange, a man of impeccable integrity?

It is Julian, not Julien.

I cannot vouch for impeccable. As a hacker, sure, no approval of the fraud types (minuscule at the time, but there). Past that slight connection at second-degree of separation, he is the media figure to me. Doesn't like to wash, so a dirty hippy. Reportedly extremely smelly. I would imagine the Ecuadorian embassy has house-trained him.

Attempts at political treatises are sub-undergraduate and pompous. Led by his penis, thus the trap in Sweden. Also done some great things, and been betrayed by MSM organisations (NYT and Guardian come to mind, in particular, the latter never shut up about the false rape charges). Now that those are over, it would be beautiful if Queen Elizabeth would grant him a pardon for his default on bail.

geokat62 , May 22, 2017 at 3:31 pm GMT

The electoral college is the "equalizer" which forces the candidates to campaign in all 50 states

That's the theory. The reality is more like:

The electoral college is the "equalizer" which forces the candidates to campaign in all 15 battleground states

or better still:

The electoral college is the "equalizer" which forces the candidates to campaign in all 5 states (CO, FL, NV, OH, VA) that have been truly competitive over the last five presidential elections

utu , May 22, 2017 at 3:32 pm GMT

@anarchyst The electoral college was put in place to keep the major population centers from determining the vote. Without the electoral college, the prospective presidential candidates would only have to cater to the major population centers and could safely ignore "flyover country", as the east and west coasts would have enough "clout" to determine the direction of the vote.

The electoral college is the "equalizer" which forces the candidates to campaign in all 50 states...

Corvinus , May 22, 2017 at 3:57 pm GMT

@Erebus

What awakening will it take for YOU to leave your armchair and become a warrior?
Being neither American, nor living anywhere near it, the only dog I have in what is still an internal American struggle is that I live on the same planet. America being what it is, it's (what I believe to be) existential struggle may well spill over its borders to impact all, in some cases violently.
So, I throw the question (quite seriously) backatchya. Will the Deplorables put their money on the table, and at what point will they do that?
But isn't the time now to drain this swamp? Why wait?
The swamp's ooze has permeated all of the power structures of the body politic, and its vapours much of the society. It cannot be drained in a day, and it cannot be drained without massive dislocation of both America's geo-political position, and its national cohesion. To "drain the swamp" is to manage the dissolution of a global empire while the resulting centrifugal forces work to tear the homeland apart.

I made a comment on another thread that expresses my view on America's situation. You may be interested.
http://www.unz.com/jderbyshire/acuckalypse-now-the-budget-betrayal-and-trump-derangement-syndrome/#comment-1865244

jilles dykstra , May 22, 2017 at 4:12 pm GMT

The USA electoral system dates back to the time individual states were important. The GB system, the same. The French system, to the time De Gaulle wanted powers to be able to rule the country.

Generals fight the last war, just German generals in WWII had no experience in WWI, as had French genererals, so German tanks were more than twice as fast as French tanks, and the German system for fuelling tanks, jerrycans, was so much faster than the French system, tank lorries, with a waiting line, that France could be overrun.
At present in Europe we see that the election system is such that the majority in countried with high unemployment, the southern countries, those in the ages of 18 to 35 or so, are contemplating rebellion.

At the same time, the euro is the cause of the unemployment, devaluation impossible, to make the country competitive in a moment, Schäuble, a euro profiteer, is talking about 'strenghtening the euro zone'.

Politicians fight the the last fight.

Clark Westwood , May 22, 2017 at 4:41 pm GMT

@Erebus Since Wheeler and the Riches found the dead horse heads at the foot of their beds, things started happening...

Kim Dotcom announced he's prepared to submit written testimony, with real evidence to Congress should they include Seth Rich's death in their probe into Russian election tampering.

I knew Seth Rich. I know he was the @Wikileaks source. I was involved. https://t.co/MbGQteHhZM
- Kim Dotcom (@KimDotcom) May 20, 2017

I'm meeting my legal team on Monday. I will issue a statement about #SethRich on Tuesday. Please be patient. This needs to be done properly.
- Kim Dotcom (@KimDotcom) May 20, 2017

Then, Newt Gingrich, on Fox News, , "... (Rich) was assassinated at 4 in the morning after having giving Wikileaks something like 53,000 emails and 17,000 attachments. Nobody's investigating that. And what does that tell you about what is going on?"

Well, we know that Kim's chances of attracting Congressional interest was just about nil, but then Sean Hannity invited Dotcom to discuss his evidence in the Seth Rich case on his shows.

Stay tuned. Public invitation Kim Dotcom to be a guest on radio and TV. #GameChanger Buckle up destroy Trump media. Sheep that u all are!!! https://t.co/3qLwXCGl6z
- Sean Hannity (@seanhannity) May 20, 2017
Most recently, he tweeted:
Complete panic has set in at the highest levels of the Democratic Party. Any bets when the kitchen sink is dumped on my head?? https://t.co/Zt2gIX4zyq
- Sean Hannity (@seanhannity) May 22, 2017
So, I'm taking heart. The swamp may be getting warm.

[May 22, 2017] Key points of TIME magazine cover story on the Russian takeover of America

Notable quotes:
"... TIME magazine has just published a cover story on the Russian takeover of America: Inside Russia's Social Media War on America . The cover image shows the White House turned into the Kremlin. I will list some of the key points below with quotes from the article: ..."
May 22, 2017 | www.moonofalabama.org

Petri Krohn | May 18, 2017 8:57:21 PM | 71

TIME magazine has just published a cover story on the Russian takeover of America: Inside Russia's Social Media War on America . The cover image shows the White House turned into the Kremlin. I will list some of the key points below with quotes from the article:

1) Social media has become a danger to democracy.

The vast openness and anonymity of social media has cleared a dangerous new route for antidemocratic forces. "Using these technologies, it is possible to undermine democratic government."

2) Democratic society must isolate itself from public opinion.

Russia may finally have gained the ability it long sought but never fully achieved in the Cold War: to alter the course of events in the U.S. by manipulating public opinion.

3) Russia spies on you.

The Russians "target you and see what you like, what you click on, and see if you're sympathetic or not sympathetic."

4) America is losing the cyberwar.

As Russia expands its cyberpropaganda efforts, the U.S. and its allies are only just beginning to figure out how to fight back.

5) Russia has clever algorithms that America lacks.

American researchers have found they can use mathematical formulas to segment huge populations into thousands of subgroups... Propagandists can then manually craft messages to influence them, deploying covert provocateurs, either humans or automated computer programs known as bots, in hopes of altering their behavior.

6) Russia has huge troll farms.

Putin dispatched his newly installed head of military intelligence, Igor Sergun, to begin repurposing cyberweapons previously used for psychological operations in war zones for use in electioneering. Russian intelligence agencies funded "troll farms," botnet spamming operations and fake news outlets as part of an expanding focus on psychological operations in cyberspace.

7) You must trust mainstream media.

Eager to appear more powerful than they are, the Russians would consider it a success if you questioned the truth of your news sources, knowing that Moscow might be lurking in your Facebook or Twitter feed.

8) Russia invaded Ukraine in April 2014 .

Putin was aiming his new weapons at the U.S. Following Moscow's April 2014 invasion of Ukraine.

9) Hillary Clinton did not murder Seth Rich.

That story went viral in late August, then took on a life of its own after Clinton fainted from pneumonia and dehydration at a Sept. 11 event in New York City. Elsewhere people invented stories saying Pope Francis had endorsed Trump and Clinton had murdered a DNC staffer.

10) The evidence:

Russia plays in every social media space. The intelligence officials have found that Moscow's agents bought ads on Facebook to target specific populations with propaganda. "They buy the ads, where it says sponsored by–they do that just as much as anybody else does," says the senior intelligence official. (A Facebook official says the company has no evidence of that occurring.) The ranking Democrat on the Senate Intelligence Committee, Mark Warner of Virginia, has said he is looking into why, for example, four of the top five Google search results the day the U.S. released a report on the 2016 operation were links to Russia's TV propaganda arm, RT. (Google says it saw no meddling in this case.) Researchers at the University of Southern California, meanwhile, found that nearly 20% of political tweets in 2016 between Sept. 16 and Oct. 21 were generated by bots of unknown origin; investigators are trying to figure out how many were Russian.

[May 22, 2017] The current divisions in Washington seem to turned into the Soviet system under Brezhnev. They dont align with the political parties and the mostly stage-managed elections. The domestic federal bureaucracy, the government contractors, the intelligence surveillance sector, the overseas military, Wall Street, are calling the shots and operate outside election cycle.

Notable quotes:
"... The real relations and divisions in Washington seem to turned into the Soviet system under Brezhnev. They don't align with the political parties and the mostly stage-managed elections anymore. The domestic federal bureaucracy, the government contractors, the intelligence & surveillance sector, the overseas military, Wall Street, they're all playing power-circle games. ..."
"... The nomenklatura were a category of people within the Soviet Union and other Eastern Bloc countries who held various key administrative positions in the bureaucracy running all spheres of those countries' activity: government, industry, agriculture, education, etc., whose positions were granted only with approval by the communist party of each country or region. ..."
"... These are the functionaries and apparatchiks of a stagnating system, which is what's been going on in the U.S. for awhile now. Trump was just too much of an outsider to be accepted by the insiders, and his threats to change the status quo led to the current situation. ..."
"... This is exactly how leadership selection in the old Soviet Union went on, too. And Trump is no master of bureaucratic infighting, unlike say, Putin. He's just flailing at this point. ..."
www.moonofalabama.org

nonsense factory | May 18, 2017 4:58:30 PM | 56

Anon

The real relations and divisions in Washington seem to turned into the Soviet system under Brezhnev. They don't align with the political parties and the mostly stage-managed elections anymore. The domestic federal bureaucracy, the government contractors, the intelligence & surveillance sector, the overseas military, Wall Street, they're all playing power-circle games. This is how the system has operated - Cheney ran it under Bush, Clinton ran it under Obama, it's all bureaucractic infighting. If you read about Soviet history you see the same thing:

The nomenklatura were a category of people within the Soviet Union and other Eastern Bloc countries who held various key administrative positions in the bureaucracy running all spheres of those countries' activity: government, industry, agriculture, education, etc., whose positions were granted only with approval by the communist party of each country or region.

These are the functionaries and apparatchiks of a stagnating system, which is what's been going on in the U.S. for awhile now. Trump was just too much of an outsider to be accepted by the insiders, and his threats to change the status quo led to the current situation. Pence, they figure, will be far more amenable to control. Even though Trump has been going along with the standard Republican domestic agenda, he's just viewed as too unpredictable for their tastes. This is exactly how leadership selection in the old Soviet Union went on, too. And Trump is no master of bureaucratic infighting, unlike say, Putin. He's just flailing at this point.

I'm not concerned about it though, if the grossly corrupt federal government is locked up with this nonsense for the next four years, that's fine. Perhaps state governments can step up and work together to solve problems while Washington gnaws its own belly, that's about the best we can hope for.

[May 22, 2017] The Special Council Inquisition - Bad For Trump - And All of Us

Notable quotes:
"... Such investigations NEVER stick to their original, limited tasks but extend further and further. The order the Acting Attorney General wrote includes language which allows for nearly unlimited digging in "any matters that arose or may arise directly from the investigation." It will thereby continue until -inevitably- some dirt will be found that can be blown out of all proportion and lead to prosecutions or impeachment. ..."
"... It is doubtful that Flynn's communication of the decision was influenced by money. Flynn had registered his lobbying under the Lobbying Disclosure Act with the Clerk of the House of Representatives effectively September 15, 2016. ..."
"... Trump believes that better relations with Russia are important for the well-being of the United States, Pence would likely pursue an anti-Russian policy. That, I believe, is the real issue here. There are no unbeseeming relations between Trump and Russia. Russia had little, if any, influence on the 2016 election. There was no "Russian meddling". But Trump's somewhat more friendly behavior towards Russia, which he campaigned for, is disliked by the-powers-that-are. ..."
"... He didn't even know what hit him. His assistant attorney general gave him the news just 30 minutes before he released it to the media. Anyone who thinks the rump is the engineer is dreaming. he's in the caboose, playing solitaire with the twits. ..."
"... I disagree this is bad. This appointment should give Trump & Sessions cover to appoint a decent FBI Director and properly go after Hilary Clinton, John Podesta, Clinton Foundation and find out who had Seth Rich murdered. ..."
"... who was in the oval office when Trump supposedly "leaked" the information? Just Rex Tillerson and McMaster (and the two Russians). McMaster is in regular communication with Paul Wolfowitz. Isn't it possible that McMaster is the mole, and then he has tried to hide his tracks by defending Trump publicly? ..."
"... The 'Russia did it', in conjunction with the 'Trump is in bed with the Russians', narratives, both completely unsubstantiated, were chosen to be seized on as a red-herring to stick like a burr to, to milk for all they could be milked for, for a variety of reasons by the PTB. ..."
"... For example, there is still a handy residual fear of Russia in the States, and Putin has been relentlessly demonized, so let's make use of it, and Russia effectively opposes 'full spectrum dominance, etc', and the spooks and MIC depend for a living on a scary big boogieman. ..."
"... The leaked extreme pathology on display easily interpreted in the Podesta emails via Wikileaks, along with the Weiner computer 'treasure trove' of emails - and the latter reportedly turned the stomach of an experienced key member of the NYPD, and involved evidence or indications of many serious crimes, Clintons involved - and then the murder of Seth Rich for having been in effect a hugely important whistleblower via Wikileaks, this mass of evidence re the seamy sick side of the massive Swamp had to be buried, silenced. ..."
"... There were two interpreter-scribes in there, both of whom made a transcript of the conversations. Putin's offer to turn over his was rebuffed, leading one to believe mischief is afoot on our side. ..."
"... The real relations and divisions in Washington seem to turned into the Soviet system under Brezhnev. They don't align with the political parties and the mostly stage-managed elections anymore. The domestic federal bureaucracy, the government contractors, the intelligence & surveillance sector, the overseas military, Wall Street, they're all playing power-circle games. ..."
"... The nomenklatura were a category of people within the Soviet Union and other Eastern Bloc countries who held various key administrative positions in the bureaucracy running all spheres of those countries' activity: government, industry, agriculture, education, etc., whose positions were granted only with approval by the communist party of each country or region. ..."
"... Filling his admin with goldman sachs scum ..."
"... Bombing Syria and helping out IS and al Qaeda for the neocons ..."
"... Considering dual citizen garbage like Lieberman ..."
"... and almost every other campaign promise he ever made. And while this is happening Trump supporters are still patting themselves on the back with blather about the power of their 'memes'. ..."
"... The Dutch are just one of many tentacles of the Christian Colonial octopus/ Swamp Alliance. All of Christian Colonialism's warmongering, banksterised, govt-toppling, movers and shakers (US, France, Germany, UK etc etc) are on board with the Get Trump conspiracy. One thing they have in common is that they all (including Oz) get their "News" from the Jew-controlled MSM and are anti-Palestinian and apologists for Jewish Colonialism in Palestine. The worsening facts-on-the-ground in "Israel" speak volumes about Christian Colonialism's support for the Israel Project. ..."
"... "Israeli"-dominated News is the de facto bullshit/ talking-point manufacturer & coordinator for The West. ..."
"... Language in the remit that authorizes an open-ended investigation is a mandate to find something to pin on the target of the investigation, not an authorization for a "proper investigation." ..."
"... Mueller's charge is to find something to pin on Trump, not to conduct a "proper investigation." ..."
"... Trump is NOT a member of the club which is the Republican Hierarchy. Those are the real motherfuckers. They do not want him to be prez and he is not welcome in their club. Neither is Trump an official errand boy for the Deep State (many among both parties are official errand boys and girls). Again, Trump is not an official errand boy. ..."
"... Trump has tried to appease the rotten motherfuckers. He really has. Trump is already ratfucking the middle class and the poor in accordance with their prescription. Trump will keep on trying to please them (See Joe Lieberhebrewratbastard). ..."
"... No matter, they strapped Pence to his back, BECAUSE they want a malleable errand boy who will DO Exactly as he is instructed ..."
"... Things are not as they seem. IMO this is a carefully scripted plan by the Deep State to push Trump into Total War, not that he was not inclined to do so anyways. His Russian connections lead to mafia ties so deep he could lose everything under Rico. He knows this. Once the War begins the internet kill switch is thrown and the lights go out. Martial Law. Like in WWI, if you criticize the war you go to jail. A Deep State Dream. ..."
"... Trump was a Trojan Horse ..."
"... MIC and international Banks will be rolling in the dough. Everyone wins except those caught in the carnage down below (bottom 99%) and of course those nations we obliterate with Shock & Awe on Steroids (nukes) ..."
"... Having never been part of the political system or worked his way up through a party, Trump lacks the army of lackeys who normally create a massive support structure for a president when he comes into office. ..."
"... Trump does not have any experts or thinkers of note that do not belong to the "meritocrats", i.e. the Washington establishment. Bannon is perhaps a thinker, but hardly of note. I even doubt that Trump has any good instincts, except that at occasion he had the childish gift of noticing that this or that has "no cloths". But the next thing a child does is throwing a tantrum for some petty reason. ..."
"... That doesn't necessarily mean it'll be Trump's dirt that washes up. If Seth Rich is proven to have leaked the emails to Wikileaks, the Russian hacking narrative evaporates, and the Ukrainian collusion to manipulate the election from the Democrat side is legitimately within the ambit of the investigation. We may yet see the Democrat Party prosecuted as a continuing criminal enterprise, and none too soon. ..."
"... They describe the capabilities of US Internet advertisers, even worse post-net-neutrality, and project it onto Russia. Their desperation reeks. ..."
"... Obama was never in the "opposition", Trump is indeed in the opposition but the question is if he have the strength to stand up to these sick people in deepstate/msm. With attacks on Syria etc it doesnt look good but there is no comparsion to the wimp Obama. ..."
"... My thesis is this: both Obama and Trump are faux populists and are part and parcel of a 'faux populist model of governance'. Elements of this model are ..."
"... A craven narcisstic egotistic Leader (Obama, Trump) that is a willing tool because he/she intends to capture a future payoff for himself. ..."
"... Establishment-friendly VP as insurance. Both Biden and Pence are seen as 'reliable hands' by TPTB. ..."
"... crazy opposition that is intended to weaken a faux populist leader and energize apologists. I call them "enforcers". ..."
"... Y'all may remember that Trump's domestic business dealings had some Mob connections. I think Wm Engdahl, among other, reported on this. Well, if you google Trump and Russian Mafia you will see an entirely different idea as to what this attack on Trump might be about. ..."
May 22, 2017 | www.moonofalabama.org
The Trump administration made a huge mistake by not preventing the just announced special council investigation into the alleged, but likely non-existing "Trump-Russia" connections:
The Justice Department appointed a special counsel Wednesday to investigate possible coordination between President Trump's associates and Russian officials - a clear signal to the White House that federal investigators will aggressively pursue the matter despite the president's insistence that there was no "collusion'' with the Kremlin.

Robert S. Mueller III, a former prosecutor who served as the FBI director from 2001 to 2013, has agreed to take over the investigation as a special counsel, Deputy Attorney General Rod J. Rosenstein announced. The move marks a concession by the Trump administration to Democratic demands for the investigation to be run independently of the Justice Department. Calls for a special counsel intensified after Trump fired FBI Director James B. Comey last week.

It is weird that the WaPo report above calls this "a concession by the Trump administration to Democratic demands for the investigation". It further states that the White House was not informed about it until it had been made:

The White House did not learn of Rosenstein's decision until just 30 minutes before the public announcement was made.

Anyway. This is bad and the Trump administration should have pulled all strings to prevent it. Such investigations NEVER stick to their original, limited tasks but extend further and further. The order the Acting Attorney General wrote includes language which allows for nearly unlimited digging in "any matters that arose or may arise directly from the investigation." It will thereby continue until -inevitably- some dirt will be found that can be blown out of all proportion and lead to prosecutions or impeachment.

Robert S. Mueller is also a bad choice as a special council as he is a former colleague and friend of former FBI director James Comey who Trump recently fired. From 2013: Forged Under Fire-Bob Mueller and Jim Comey's Unusual Friendship

Both men were rising stars mentored and guided by Eric Holder in the 1990s during Holder's time in the Justice Department under the Clinton administration.
...
Mueller, now 68, and Comey, now 52, would become close partners and close allies throughout the years ahead.
...

Both, Comey and Mueller, were involved in the dramatic hospital scene at the bed of Attorney General Ashcroft to stop Bush's illegal program of spying on U.S. citizens. The program in question stopped for a moment but the spying simply continued under a different legal justification.

The attempts to smear Trump and those around him over foreign connections have entered absurd territory. The lead headline at McClatchy today is a. old news, b. confusing the timeline only to further throw dirt into the direction of Trump:

Flynn stopped military plan Turkey opposed – after being paid as its agent

One of the Trump administration's first decisions about the fight against the Islamic State was made by Michael Flynn weeks before he was fired – and it conformed to the wishes of Turkey, whose interests, unbeknownst to anyone in Washington, he'd been paid more than $500,000 to represent.

The incoming Trump administration temporarily stopped the Raqqa campaign which the Obama administration had decided would be done with Kurdish forces. This was on January 17 , only a few days before the Trump administration took over. The Obama administration itself had deliberated about the issue for over 8 month and its choice was not its preferred option:

Most of the shortcomings outlined by the Trump team were obvious to Obama's advisers he added. In fact, the senior Obama administration official said, arming the Kurds was Obama's Plan B, after it became clear that Plan A - using Turkish forces to take Raqqa - would not be feasible.

It is doubtful that Flynn's communication of the decision was influenced by money. Flynn had registered his lobbying under the Lobbying Disclosure Act with the Clerk of the House of Representatives effectively September 15, 2016. According to his later filling (pdf) at the Foreign Agent Registry, his consulting contract with the Turkish owned company had ended three month later, on November 15, 2016. The owner of the company Inovo, which had hired Flynn, is Ekim Alptekin, an ally of the Turkish President Erdogan. (Alptekin's lawyer ones asserted that the company had acted on behalf of Israeli gas interests. The two Israeli gas companies possibly involved both denied any such connection.) Alptekin himself denied any connection to Trump administration decisions and correctly noted that Trump had practically no chance of winning the election at the time Alptekin had hired Flynn who was then just one of many Trump advisors.

There is no reasonable relation between Flynn's lobbying for Turkish interest and the halt of the Raqqa campaign preparations. Attempts to drawn lines between the Turkish lobbying and Russian interests end up as convoluted rumor collections. With the Raqqa halt the Trump administration simply rejected to take responsibility for a military adventure (which had not even started) based on a dubious last-minute Obama decision. It wanted to review the issue and decide after its own assessment.

One has to ask why McClatchy is reporting this now? That Flynn had was lobbying for Alptekin's company was registered in September and first reported in November 2016. The temporary halt of the Raqqa campaign planing was decided on January 17 and reported on February 2 2017. Where then is the "news" value in this May 2017 McClatchy report?

Aspecial council investigation will, of course, jump on such not-news reports like McClatchy's. He will dramatically invite witnesses and leak further rumors to the media - even when the basic facts show that there is nothing to it. Such investigations pursue death by a thousand cuts.

The Democrats, and especially progressives, work against their voters interest when they pursue a Trump impeachment which would let Vice President Pence take the White House:

Pence is a horror -- fiscal sadist, misogynist, homophobe, lover of the carceral state.

Pence is way more conservative than Trump. With Republicans in power in Congress he could easily implement all the horrific policies he ever dreamed of.

But the borg and the Democratic leadership are not concerned about that:

Democrats cheered the [special council] announcement as a step forward in resolving the unanswered questions about Russian meddling in last year's presidential election - and whether the president or anyone at the White House has interfered with the investigation.

Trump believes that better relations with Russia are important for the well-being of the United States, Pence would likely pursue an anti-Russian policy. That, I believe, is the real issue here. There are no unbeseeming relations between Trump and Russia. Russia had little, if any, influence on the 2016 election. There was no "Russian meddling". But Trump's somewhat more friendly behavior towards Russia, which he campaigned for, is disliked by the-powers-that-are.

We can now expect a very long drawn special council investigation with lots of media leaks and reporting. It will drown out all other important issues. It will likely end badly for Trump and badly for peaceful global power relations.

Posted by b on May 18, 2017 at 07:07 AM | Permalink

1

1) Allow me to hail your work. I myself have done research on the Web, I know how much work it can be, and the speed at which you find relevant information and put it together is absolutely stunning.
2) To quote you, "It will end badly for Trump, badly for global power relations", and I add, badly for Western democracies. The gloves are coming off: we Westerners (USA, EU, etc) have democratic systems... as long as we vote as we are told. In other terms, ours is a wolf in sheep's clothing system, and the truth is we live in banana republics.

Our US-led system has never seen anything wrong about toppling elected leaders and sponsoring the worst dictators in places like Asia, Europe, the Middle-East or South America. They've done it for decades. Why did we ever imagine they would hesitate to do the same at home?

Berry Friesen | May 18, 2017 7:54:24 AM | 2
I'm persuaded there's nothing there, so are you, b. Yet for obvious reasons, many are not. So Trump did the wise thing: he is cooperating with the only chance he has of putting this manufactured issue to bed.
Piotr Berman | May 18, 2017 8:01:12 AM | 3
While special investigations can be pretty bad, I do not see a superior alternative. Investigations are part of the executive function of the government, at least in USA, and the executive power has too many temptations to meddle, temptations that Trump did not resist. On paper, the special prosecutor is accomplished and "non-partisan", one can quibble if they could not found someone with a higher numeral, like Robert S. Mueller IV (III means that both dad and grandad were Roberts, rather than alternate between two names like kings of Denmark who alternate between Christian and Frederik).
somebody | May 18, 2017 8:19:22 AM | 4
Actually it is good for Trump.

As I understand it the task is to "oversee the previously-confirmed FBI investigation of Russian government efforts to influence the 2016 presidential election and related matters" Mueller was appointed by Bush. As I understand it, he has to report to Rod Rosenstein, a Republican, who fired Comey . The devil is in the "related matters" - which might be anything from the DNC leak to the Obama administration spying on the Trump campaign.

jfl | May 18, 2017 8:35:29 AM | 5
@2 bf, 'Trump did the wise thing: he is cooperating with the only chance he has of putting this manufactured issue to bed ...'

He didn't even know what hit him. His assistant attorney general gave him the news just 30 minutes before he released it to the media. Anyone who thinks the rump is the engineer is dreaming. he's in the caboose, playing solitaire with the twits.

The show will go on. The rump will continue from somewhere in the white house at the length of his leash, blowing off steam as he goes, but the pressure in the boiler will continuously drop and the sound of his whistle will diminish, calling more and more lonesome night after night from the tracks along the twitter line. an endless line of dictators will stream through the white house, each duly proclaimed his new best friend.

People all over the world will begin to reduce as much as possible their exposure to all things American, especially the dollar.

V. Arnold | May 18, 2017 8:36:48 AM | 6
Circus maximus; minus the dead bodies (?)...
Hoarsewhisperer | May 18, 2017 8:42:08 AM | 7
Trump's experience in dog-eat-dog BizWorld would have included worse scenarios than this Star Chamber gambit by the Swamp. And the Swamp is so politicized and corrupt that Team Trump will drown them in their own bs.
PavewayIV | May 18, 2017 8:56:49 AM | 9
b,
"Pence is a horror-fiscal sadist, misogynist, homophobe, lover of the carceral state."

They forgot "Israeli-firster" and this doesn't even scratch the surface. The only thing worse than having the U.S. with nobody in charge since election day is having a sniveling little psychopath like Pence in charge. I still think I'll be right about WW III - I was just one president too early. God does have a sense of humor, and the joke is on the U.S. Few tears will be shed. We had it coming for a long time now.

Julian | May 18, 2017 9:09:11 AM | 10
I disagree this is bad. This appointment should give Trump & Sessions cover to appoint a decent FBI Director and properly go after Hilary Clinton, John Podesta, Clinton Foundation and find out who had Seth Rich murdered.

Justice for Seth Rich. Fire Clinton Corrupt Cabal Crony Andy McCabe and put him in the dock for the cover-up. Do it Trump and don't stuff it up!

pantaraxia | May 18, 2017 9:51:03 AM | 13
@8. 9

Speaking of "Israeli-firster" and "appoint a decent FBI Director", it appears that in the latest iteration of Tales from the Crypt, none other than Joe Lieberman has been resurrected from the undead to become odds on favourite as the next FBI Director. The same uber-Zionist Lieberman who makes Pence look positively meek in regard to Israel, who sponsored the Iraqi War Resolution Act , and who along with fellow lunatics McCain and Graham comprised the more war act known as the Three Amigos.

Yep, things are really looking up.

Anon | May 18, 2017 9:54:36 AM | 14
Does this idiocy ever stop? ! US with its deep state and media is really in a mess with this hatred against Russia and the sick witch hunt to find 1 piece of evidence to get rid of Trump. This is McCarthyism all over it. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/McCarthyism

"McCarthyism is the practice of making accusations of subversion or treason without proper regard for evidence.[1] The term refers to U.S. Senator Joseph McCarthy and has its origins in the period in the United States known as the Second Red Scare, lasting roughly from 1947 to 1956 and characterized by heightened political repression as well as a campaign spreading fear of influence on American institutions and of espionage by Soviet agents".

somebody

How is this hysteria a good thing? There is no russian connection. Its a hoax and its scary how people buy this, eventually this will result in hot war.

Julian | May 18, 2017 9:59:24 AM | 15
Re: Posted by: pantaraxia | May 18, 2017 9:51:03 AM | 13

Well. If Trump is dumb enough to make Lieberman his next FBI Director he will have only himself to blame for his failed Presidency.

Given Lieberman's a well known swamp creature though I can't possibly see Trump making such a huge error so soon after making such a great decision - ie - Firing Corrupt Comey. Take it to the bank - there is no chance Lieberman will be FBI Director.

PavewayIV | May 18, 2017 10:09:19 AM | 17
Debsisdead@12 - "...Pence will be gone quick smart so that the whores on the hill can manipulate some schmuck into the VP gig so if they do get the trumpet, the whores will own the executive..."

Why would the powers that be want Pence gone, Debs? It has nothing to do with Pence's vision or skills. It has everything to do with how 'ownable' he is, and that guy (as you have observed) is very ownable . The perfect lapdog for the deep state. Spiro Agnew indeed.

"...IMO, that is a good thing when pols spend their days trying to fuck each other up it diverts them away from their usual business of trying to fuck us up..."

I'll humbly suggest you have not been watching closely enough. The shackles are being slipped over your ankles while you watch the juggling monkeys duke it out. The monkeys have little to do with anything - they're the entertainment and distraction. People fall for it every time. Why would it be different this time around?

LXV | May 18, 2017 10:15:04 AM | 19
Thank you b!

I believe TPTSB's appointment of a special investigator serves as a counterweight to recent revelations of a direct Communication between Seth Rich and Wikileaks.

I.e. it's the age old strategy of obfuscation, smoke and mirrors: when adversaries find and present evidence against you, a counter-attack of at least the same proportions makes the perfect defense (with lamestream media shills on their side, this is gonna get ridiculous coverage). In this way they're killing 2 flies with 1 strike - taking the heat off of themselves and transforming Trump's offensive into a desperate attempt to save face and not get impeached.

Anon | May 18, 2017 10:24:16 AM | 20
somebody

Forbidden to make business with Russia? Yes apparently it is. Since the election US media and the ongoing investigation on Russia have already put out according to themselves clear evidence of Russian influence. Have you missed this? How is this hysteria a good thing now?

BRF | May 18, 2017 10:29:59 AM | 22
The tangled web of international business connections and deals runs across all so called' national interest' lines and any sanctions and such for the big boyz. The HSBC conviction and deferred prosecution being a prime example. This is but one small corner that may be revealed and no doubt Trump has business connections with the more shadowy Russian oligarchs as the casino-resort business has long ties with organized crime and the Russians of this bent would probably like a piece of that action by investing in a Trump development.

It is one of my beliefs that a big portion of Trump's political ideology could be summed up as 'What is good for the casino resorts is good for America.' So a disappearing American middle class is 'not good,' and thus 'America needs to be made great again.' Three axioms prevail in deciphering today's world: cui bono, follow the money, and don't be distracted by the manufactured distractions. In this case a lot of roads lead back to the Clintons et al.

harrylaw | May 18, 2017 10:46:08 AM | 23
I agree with somebody@4 and Julian@10, A special Council Investigation cannot limit its investigation to Trump and Associates, a proper investigation will go where the evidence leads, since Clinton and the DNC servers are also in the frame and should be even more investigated by Special Council since it is the DNC and it's MSM supporters complaints which have led the affair thus far.

Seth Rich, for instance is alleged to have 44,000 emails and 17,000 attachments on his computor, which again have been alleged to have been shared with Wikileaks through its now deceased Director Gavin MacFadyen. Adding credence to this claim is Wikileaks 20,000 dollar reward for any information on who killed Seth Rich. This is a double edged sword which could blow Clinton the DNC and all their nefarious machinations out the water.

Anon | May 18, 2017 10:52:54 AM | 24
harrylaw

But this is not a new investigation, its the continuation of the ongoing investigation about so called russian influence - comey had to go and this new guy will take over. This investigation which have been ongoing past months have nothing to do with Clinton whatsoever to do with. Is this really news for people?

blues | May 18, 2017 10:57:15 AM | 25
I'll take the guess that this will initially look to be on the up-and-up, and then turn into a political Kenneth Star type of affair. It's all ugly. They really are swamp creatures.
James lake | May 18, 2017 11:08:11 AM | 26
Just read An article entitled Trump Escalates Syrian Proxy War over at Consortium News. Could not care less what happens to Trump, he brought it all on himself. Iran, Russia and China need to get their defenses ready as the guns will be turned in them when the US has finished tearing itself apart

karlof1 | May 18, 2017 11:26:16 AM | 29
Trump tweets: "With all of the illegal acts that took place in the Clinton campaign & Obama Administration, there was never a special councel [sic] appointed!

"This is the single greatest witch hunt of a politician in American history!"

Zerohedge chimes in: "Of course, he does seem to have a point that after all the revelations of intentional evidence destruction (remember BleachBit), despite the known existence of a Congressional subpoena, intentional violations of the Federal Records Retention Act, secret Bill Clinton meetings with the Attorney General on Phoenix tarmacs and the passing out of immunity deals "like they were candy" by former FBI Director Comey, it does seem curious that no special counsel was ever appointed to look into Hillary's case. Will Trump now insist that one be appointed?"

Unfortunately, the crimes Trump's committed as POTUS come under the category of Crimes of Empire for which no POTUS has ever been impeached. One possible outcome from this political war would be the rise of an alternative political party having no connections with the wreckage of the D or R parties. I propose it be named the 99% Party.

Mina | May 18, 2017 12:05:50 PM | 31
http://english.ahram.org.eg/NewsContent/2/9/269029/World/International/-Trump-campaign-had-at-least--undisclosed-contacts.aspx
runaway robot | May 18, 2017 12:43:00 PM | 32
Interesting article by Jim Kavanagh up on Counterpunch. Any thoughts on this?
ProPeace | May 18, 2017 1:12:58 PM | 34
Well said: Donald Trump's Seven Days in May - Judge Napolitano
Though the president has complained that Comey failed to investigate leaks of intelligence data from within his administration, The Washington Post effectively accused the president himself of becoming the leaker in chief by revealing to the Russians information so secret that only a handful of Americans legally possessed it. That information consisted of the name of a city in Syria from which spies had reported that the Islamic State group was plotting to plant bombs on commercial airliners.

What is so secret about that? Intelligence data almost always requires reading between the lines. Doing so here reveals the country from which the intelligence came, as there is only one friendly country that has sufficient intelligence resources in that city to develop local human spies. That country, which the president did not name but which we know is Israel, at first threatened to cut off providing intelligence data to the U.S. because of the president's private revelations but later said that all is forgiven. So, the president told the Russians where to find Israeli spies in Syria.

The fact that these revelations were private is of legal significance. Under federal law, the president can declassify any secrets, even the most highly sensitive and guarded ones. He can do so by whispering the secret into someone's ear or by formally removing the secret from its The Freedom Answer Boo... Andrew P. Napolitano Best Price: $1.99 Buy New $3.01 classified status. But because he did not do the latter, the secret is still a secret - yet The Washington Post has this material and may now legally reveal it.

All of this demonstrates that rogue intelligence agents can engage in their own form of agitprop - agitation propaganda. And they can cause political harm with it. Yet the questions of whether Donald Trump revealed top secrets to the Russians and, if he did so, whether it was intentional or not and whether it was harmful to national security are questions to which we are entitled to answers. And was Jim Comey fired for getting too close to the truth or not close enough?

Why do these questions keep coming?

plantman | May 18, 2017 1:54:26 PM | 36
who was in the oval office when Trump supposedly "leaked" the information? Just Rex Tillerson and McMaster (and the two Russians). McMaster is in regular communication with Paul Wolfowitz. Isn't it possible that McMaster is the mole, and then he has tried to hide his tracks by defending Trump publicly?

canuck | May 18, 2017 2:29:06 PM | 40
The 'Russia did it', in conjunction with the 'Trump is in bed with the Russians', narratives, both completely unsubstantiated, were chosen to be seized on as a red-herring to stick like a burr to, to milk for all they could be milked for, for a variety of reasons by the PTB.

For example, there is still a handy residual fear of Russia in the States, and Putin has been relentlessly demonized, so let's make use of it, and Russia effectively opposes 'full spectrum dominance, etc', and the spooks and MIC depend for a living on a scary big boogieman.

But the main intent was to divert public attention from extremely serious revelations about the Swamp that is the Washington PsTB.

The leaked extreme pathology on display easily interpreted in the Podesta emails via Wikileaks, along with the Weiner computer 'treasure trove' of emails - and the latter reportedly turned the stomach of an experienced key member of the NYPD, and involved evidence or indications of many serious crimes, Clintons involved - and then the murder of Seth Rich for having been in effect a hugely important whistleblower via Wikileaks, this mass of evidence re the seamy sick side of the massive Swamp had to be buried, silenced.

And notice that Comey was notably silent on much of this, and couldn't manage to find enough stuff on Hillary to merit more than a mild 'she was careless' with classified material reprimand.

The attention of the public had to be diverted somewhere, so why not towards Russia, and Trump had to be defeated, because Trump is not a reliable charter member of the Swamp. No doubt he has had some unseemly forays into the swamp. But the swamp dwellers see him on their very personal private level as a deadly enemy, a terminal threat. Recall Hillary's "we'll hang" prediction.

The Russia did it meme has been a desperate 'endless talking point' attempt to first, cover up and deny and divert attention from pedogate and other satanic or seriously criminal stuff in Washington and among the elite, and second, to try to take down Trump. He who may actually try to do the right thing; is not reliably under control by the PTB.

Hard to know what are the implications and will be the outcome of the appointment of the former FBI director Mueller, to investigate a non event and other related stuff. Sounds like an infinite task. Maybe this new oddyssey will be featured in his obituary notice some day, overshadowing his hitherto main claim to fame: presiding over the non-investigation of the treasonous 9/11 false flag.

CarlD | May 18, 2017 2:49:28 PM | 43
It is to be feared that feeling the heat, the Donald might try to divert attention with some "action d'eclat" involving some invented enemy's treat. He could very well sting NK or Iran. He could invent some "tonkin incident" in the persian Gulf... who knows?
Anon | May 18, 2017 2:57:08 PM | 44
CarlD

Correct, and in fact just hours now he attacked pro-Syrian forces in Syria. So Trump attack Syria when he got problems with neocon, anti-russian groups at home. Meanwhile ISIS cheer, along with EU, Nato and the Media, what a sick mind the western world have.

terril | May 18, 2017 3:03:45 PM | 45
Within 24 hours of terrorist supporter McCain coming out publicly about not supporting any impeachment of Trump, Trump bombs Syrian and Iraqi anti-IS troops in Syria.
Bart | May 18, 2017 3:10:02 PM | 46
36 - "who was in the oval office when Trump supposedly "leaked" the information?"

There were two interpreter-scribes in there, both of whom made a transcript of the conversations. Putin's offer to turn over his was rebuffed, leading one to believe mischief is afoot on our side.

chet380 | May 18, 2017 4:06:23 PM | 47
As to a Deputy-AG appointing a Special Counsel w/o presidential approval, there is a purported "Chinese wall" between the Office of the A-G and POTUS to allow the A-G to act independently. One can only pray that the present appointee doesn't turn out to be another Kenneth Starr.

Piotr Berman | May 18, 2017 4:29:26 PM | 51
The Dems are foolish retards, totally unredeemable.
Posted by: Clueless Joe | May 18, 2017 2:48:24 PM | 42

I am more optimistic about possibilities of redemption. For example, Enlightenment was a reaction to XVII century in Europe that was spend on a series of very bloody religious wars, in proportion to population, XVII century was more bloody than XX. So particular types of myopic and stupidity do not last forever. Second, it is not a particularly "partisan" condition. More like zeitgeist, I am afraid.

Within 24 hours of terrorist supporter McCain coming out publicly about not supporting any impeachment of Trump, Trump bombs Syrian and Iraqi anti-IS troops in Syria.

Posted by: terril | May 18, 2017 3:03:45 PM | 45

If only the special counsel would add war crimes to his investigation. If they can drift from real estate deals to veracity of testimony about sexual contacts, war crimes are a bit more related to "improper foreign contacts". And, well, they are crimes.

Anon | May 18, 2017 4:35:44 PM | 52
james

What strikes me is how far GOP seems to be totally uninterested in defending Trump and = their party, basically they are making GOP weaker and weaker. Some GOP seems to hate Trump even more than the Democrats!

tommy cockles | May 18, 2017 4:50:27 PM | 54
Bob Mueller: Super Hero (Oh wow, modern history completely revised!) I awoke to Fake News stories this morning, about the former FBI director, Robert Swan Mueller III: utterly impeccable, fantastic previous performance, in fact, a paragon of performance virtue! ! ! (Does have quite the Deep State lineage, that Bob!)

The Nation is saved! Or, maybe not . . . .

To recap old Bob's performances: the FBI never solved the case of missing nuke secrets at Los Alamos, but certainly put poor Mr. Wen Ho Lee through the ringer; they appear to have never investigated the valid allegations of former translator and whistleblower, Sibel Edmonds --- who was put under an official gag order for years; multiple contrived "counterterrorist" shams, when poor inner-city youths in Miami and Chicago (and elsewhere???) were set up --- then busted --- as probable terrorists; further deep penetration and compromising of the FBI by Chinese intelligence organizations, etc., etc., etc.

OK, under Bob Mueller's watch, the notorious international crime lord, Martha Stewart, was jailed! Bravo, Bobby, and I'm sure American slept more soundly with Ms. Stewart off the streets!

I recall the FBI, under the directorship of Mueller, as one severely dysfunctional outfit, i.e., business as usual. (Remember the congressional after-action report on 9/11? Remember how FBI middle managers, Frasca and Maltbie, rejected all terrorist warnings from field agents Sinder, Cowley and Williams, et al.? Remember how Frasca and Maltbie were then promoted???)

Yes, Bob Mueller does have a history of "public service" --- he was appointed chief of the DoJ's criminal division by President George H.W. Bush when that BCCI investigation was getting closer and closer to the White House and old Bob made sure that it got no closer!

And to insure that Treasury was in line during that period, Bush family cousin, John Walker, had been appointed the chief enforcement officer there --- the same John Walker, later appointed as a judge, who would have the future FBI director, James Comey, clerking for him.

Yes, Bob is the grandnephew of Richard Bissell, the CIA deputy director of plans, fired by President Kennedy before he was assassinated in Dallas.

Yes, Bob's wife's family name is Cabell --- and it was deputy director of the CIA, Gen. Charles Cabell, who was also fired by President Kennedy, and Cabell's brother, Earl Cabell, was indeed the mayor of Dallas on the day Kennedy had his brains splattered on a Dallas street!

Bob grew up in a wealthy family, we are told, so he needn't have served in Vietnam in combat. Yes, Bob's family wealth was on the Truesdale side of the family,that would be the same Truesdales who generations earlier were implicated in the bombing of competitors' oil refineries for the Rockefeller family, and later ended up with a Rockefeller-previously-owned railroad. Typical Horatio Alger-type story, no doubt. (I'm not suggesting anyone search into the family background of Bob --- those rich people are all saints, after all!)

I cannot comment on his military service, although it would be interesting to hear any former Marines' comments who served under him?

I recall that George W. Bush, who would late appoint Bob as the FBI director, was ahead of me a bit when he entered enlisted basic training and his name was still a joke at Lackland AFB when I went through there: the politician's son who went through enlisted basic training, then returned to Houston to miraculously, overnight, become an officer and jet pilot?!?!

Call me a radical progressive or call me a socialist --- but never, ever call me gullible and stupid! (And wasn't that Robert Swan Mueller III? And wasn't there a chair of the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco, around 1962 or early 1963, named Swan, when they lost millions of dollars there? Always wondered how the CIA paid for those assassinations in '63 and '68?)

Recommended viewing and reading:

The Tiger Trap by David Wise

Jounalists for Hire by Udo Ulfkotte

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IClVKyb63m4&authuser=0

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_pCk1qc4JvI

nonsense factory | May 18, 2017 4:58:30 PM | 56
Anon

The real relations and divisions in Washington seem to turned into the Soviet system under Brezhnev. They don't align with the political parties and the mostly stage-managed elections anymore. The domestic federal bureaucracy, the government contractors, the intelligence & surveillance sector, the overseas military, Wall Street, they're all playing power-circle games. This is how the system has operated - Cheney ran it under Bush, Clinton ran it under Obama, it's all bureaucractic infighting. If you read about Soviet history you see the same thing:

The nomenklatura were a category of people within the Soviet Union and other Eastern Bloc countries who held various key administrative positions in the bureaucracy running all spheres of those countries' activity: government, industry, agriculture, education, etc., whose positions were granted only with approval by the communist party of each country or region.

These are the functionaries and apparatchiks of a stagnating system, which is what's been going on in the U.S. for awhile now. Trump was just too much of an outsider to be accepted by the insiders, and his threats to change the status quo led to the current situation. Pence, they figure, will be far more amenable to control. Even though Trump has been going along with the standard Republican domestic agenda, he's just viewed as too unpredictable for their tastes. This is exactly how leadership selection in the old Soviet Union went on, too. And Trump is no master of bureaucratic infighting, unlike say, Putin. He's just flailing at this point.

I'm not concerned about it though, if the grossly corrupt federal government is locked up with this nonsense for the next four years, that's fine. Perhaps state governments can step up and work together to solve problems while Washington gnaws its own belly, that's about the best we can hope for.

psychohistorian | May 18, 2017 5:18:31 PM | 57
What seems obvious to me is that the appointment of a special investigation defuses the issue for the moment and lets whatever findings are allowed to be brought forth to occur at some timely future date as part of some other wag the dog event.

Next.

karlof1 | May 18, 2017 5:32:42 PM | 58
tc @54--

Thanks for that blistering bio. Seems most Deep State players have family ties to the cabal that hired General Butler to oust FDR only to become the nascent CIA's cadre.

terril | May 18, 2017 5:37:02 PM | 59
Trump being neutered by Washington and increasingly likely being taken down points out the incredible naievity of the populus shouts of 'drain the swamp', 'term limits', etc. and the lone hero arriving in town like some stereotypical Western movie plot.

Having never been part of the political system or worked his way up through a party, Trump lacks the army of lackeys who normally create a massive support structure for a president when he comes into office.

Trump appears to be like someone curled up in a fetal position crying out to an angry mob beating him what else he needs to do for them to stop.

and almost every other campaign promise he ever made. And while this is happening Trump supporters are still patting themselves on the back with blather about the power of their 'memes'.

Hoarsewhisperer | May 18, 2017 5:37:28 PM | 60
Posted by: pantaraxia | May 18, 2017 8:54:19 AM | 8
(Dutch anti-Trump smears)

The Dutch are just one of many tentacles of the Christian Colonial octopus/ Swamp Alliance. All of Christian Colonialism's warmongering, banksterised, govt-toppling, movers and shakers (US, France, Germany, UK etc etc) are on board with the Get Trump conspiracy. One thing they have in common is that they all (including Oz) get their "News" from the Jew-controlled MSM and are anti-Palestinian and apologists for Jewish Colonialism in Palestine. The worsening facts-on-the-ground in "Israel" speak volumes about Christian Colonialism's support for the Israel Project.

"Israeli"-dominated News is the de facto bullshit/ talking-point manufacturer & coordinator for The West.

Paul E. Merrell, J.D. | May 18, 2017 5:48:16 PM | 62
I agree with somebody@4 and Julian@10, A special Council Investigation cannot limit its investigation to Trump and Associates, a proper investigation will go where the evidence leads ...
Posted by: harrylaw | May 18, 2017 10:46:08 AM | 23

Investigations going where the evidence leads sounds important but is utter B.S. Every fact in the world is connected to every other fact by some other intervening fact(s). A "proper investigation" begins with a suspicion that a particular act or omission has been committed and the investigation answers whether that particular act or omission was in fact committed.

Language in the remit that authorizes an open-ended investigation is a mandate to find something to pin on the target of the investigation, not an authorization for a "proper investigation." E.g., Kenneth Star's investigation began with a remit to investigate the suicide death of deputy White House counsel Vince Foster and the Whitewater real estate investments of Bill Clinton. But Star ultimately charged Bill Clinton only with perjury about having an affair with Monica Lewinsky, something that had only the most tenuous connection --- many would say no connection --- with his original remit.

Mueller's charge is to find something to pin on Trump, not to conduct a "proper investigation."

2 cents from someone who has done hundreds of investigation.

karlof1 | May 18, 2017 6:48:40 PM | 63
Mercouris at The Duran presents an excellent argument why nothing will be found and the investigation shut down after awhile, the reasoning being within the statement made appointing Mueller, http://theduran.com/counsel-mueller-disappoint-democrats-media/

fast freddy | May 18, 2017 7:16:54 PM | 65
Trump is NOT a member of the club which is the Republican Hierarchy. Those are the real motherfuckers. They do not want him to be prez and he is not welcome in their club. Neither is Trump an official errand boy for the Deep State (many among both parties are official errand boys and girls). Again, Trump is not an official errand boy.

Trump has tried to appease the rotten motherfuckers. He really has. Trump is already ratfucking the middle class and the poor in accordance with their prescription. Trump will keep on trying to please them (See Joe Lieberhebrewratbastard).

No matter, they strapped Pence to his back, BECAUSE they want a malleable errand boy who will DO Exactly as he is instructed.

They don't want Trump - second guessing them. No hesitation.

The Middle East must fall as quickly as possible in accordance with the Yinon Plan. And America must NOT have a revived middle class. It cannot be made great again.

blues | May 18, 2017 7:38:11 PM | 66
Just so people know. . .

/~~~~~~~~~~
Independent Counsels, Special Prosecutors, Special Counsels, and the Role of Congress
Congressional Research Service
June 20, 2013
https://fas.org/sgp/crs/misc/R43112.pdf

Congress may also have a legislative role in designing a statutory mechanism for the appointment of "independent counsels" or "special prosecutors," as it did in title VI of the Ethics in Government Act of 1978. Under the provisions of that law relating to the appointment of "independent counsels" (called "special prosecutors" until 1983), the Attorney General was directed to petition a special three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals to name an independent counsel upon the receipt of credible allegations of criminal misconduct by certain high-level personnel in the executive branch of the federal government whose prosecution by the Administration might give rise to an appearance of a conflict of interest. In 1999, Congress allowed the "independent counsel" provisions of law to expire. Upon the expiration of the law in June of 1999, no new "independent counsels" or "special prosecutors" may be appointed by a three-judge panel upon the application of the Attorney General.
\~~~~~~~~~~

So Robert S. Mueller is a "special counsel" but not a "special prosecutor" (I don't recall this mentioned here yet -- might have missed it). This means that it would require an act of congress (and probably 2/3rds of Congress) to appoint a new "special prosecutor". And so, they say, Trump could theoretically fire Mueller.

Pft | May 18, 2017 7:54:33 PM | 67
Things are not as they seem. IMO this is a carefully scripted plan by the Deep State to push Trump into Total War, not that he was not inclined to do so anyways. His Russian connections lead to mafia ties so deep he could lose everything under Rico. He knows this. Once the War begins the internet kill switch is thrown and the lights go out. Martial Law. Like in WWI, if you criticize the war you go to jail. A Deep State Dream.

I never did believe Trump with his billions would want to be in this for the long haul. He resigns at some point, keeps his fortune and the guy the Deep State and Dark Money (koch Brothers, etc) wanted all along takes over (Pence).

Trump was a Trojan Horse to get the Koch Brothers control. They probably had something on Trump to force him to run and avoid Rico charges. He lied his way into office , got some help from Comey and a mole in the DNC who has been taken out (blamed on Putin) and now will play out the script. Lets face it, we've all been had. Trump had Comey ousted for show and he will live the good life with a job well done. Deep State controlled MSM will have a new war to cover and maybe even a show of impeachment hearings before or during the war. Great for ratings and advertisements especially if they can shut down the alternative media on the internet which Martial Law or new laws being wriitten will allow. MIC and international Banks will be rolling in the dough. Everyone wins except those caught in the carnage down below (bottom 99%) and of course those nations we obliterate with Shock & Awe on Steroids (nukes)

Lochearn | May 18, 2017 7:55:12 PM | 68
They will go on and on and on until they can find something to impeach Trump on. I with agree with comments that now Israel appears to have pitched in the outlook for Trump does not look good. The flip side of this is how Trump's deplorables will react to the taking down of their man. The ongoing events have awakened and will awaken significant numbers of previously asleep people. People who are very angry, many of whom have guns. If these people start rioting the whole edifice will shake and anything could happen.

If they don't riot the anger could find its outlet in mass targetted killings of the 1% by individuals or groups that are very difficult to track.

Ghostship | May 18, 2017 8:00:36 PM | 69
>>>> karlof1 | May 18, 2017 6:48:40 PM | 63

Mercouris at The Duran is almost certainly correct that nothing will be found and there might be an attempt to shut down the investigation, but the Clintonists like their vozhd won't accept the results and this stupidity will continue. Who says Trump is a bad loser? Clinton and the Clintonists who still can't accept that she lost.

Piotr Berman | May 18, 2017 8:37:50 PM | 70
Having never been part of the political system or worked his way up through a party, Trump lacks the army of lackeys who normally create a massive support structure for a president when he comes into office. Posted by: terril | May 18, 2017 5:37:02 PM | 59

More precisely, Trump may have as any lackeys, well-wishing hacks (like Bannon), doting family members as he wants, but "institutional memory" has layers of aristocracy (born to expert meritorious service) and those who earned her spurs with aristocratic mentors and got accepted. There was a time when Bill Clinton was a literal hillbilly to our aristocrats, and Hillary, a girl from a good family who unfortunately strayed and married the rascal. But with hard work, quick wit, and good eye for the newest fashion (making liberalism more centric) he got accepted. The case of Obama is similar.

One can sneer at the aristocracy and "first generation meritocrats", but this is not XVIII-th century and the government is, by necessity, quite complex, and experts are necessary. If you send a non-expert to a key department, or to Presidential office, without good vision and good advise, he will get digested or spit out.

To some degree, the bureaucrats are apolitical and can follow the politicians. You want more reasonable penalties in the federal court? We can do it. You want to push them up to the max for your favorite categories -- we can do it. You want to squeeze financial wizards who make the economy moving (some people may call it fraud, but isn't it a form of capital formation?), the digestive juices of the system starts flowing. And so on.

Trump does not have any experts or thinkers of note that do not belong to the "meritocrats", i.e. the Washington establishment. Bannon is perhaps a thinker, but hardly of note. I even doubt that Trump has any good instincts, except that at occasion he had the childish gift of noticing that this or that has "no cloths". But the next thing a child does is throwing a tantrum for some petty reason.

jfl | May 18, 2017 9:32:00 PM | 76
@75 vv 'They will blunder about in lost befuddlement until they vanish.'

so true. but we'll still be here. our sheer numbers ensure that we will survive. i think it would be good if we worked together to prevent the reboot of the same old broken system after its blue screen flashes at death, just like a m$ machine. we know now exactly what will reboot if we don't.

Piotr Berman | May 18, 2017 10:04:50 PM | 77
"Donald Trump used alt-right messaging to get into the White House but he and his third-rate staff haven't the slightest clue of what gave rise to the deplorables in the first place and how to address the root despair of the western working class." VietnamVet

I do not know how highly rated the staff was, but it was sufficiently high. If the opponent has fourth-rate staff, it would be wasteful to use anything better than third-rate. Figuring what gave rise to the deplorable is a wasted effort, sociologist differ, and in politics the "root causes" matter only a little. And all authorities suggest to exploit the despair with soundbites and posturing. Granted, this is a platitude, but how to obtain compelling soundbites and posturing? I think that the best technique is based on so-called wedge issues. A good wedge issue should raise passions on "both sides" but not so much in the "center", mostly clueless undecided voters. Calibrate your position so it is a good scrap of meat for your "base" while it drives the adversaries to conniptions, the conniptions provide talking points and together, drive the clueless in your direction. Wash, repeat.

susan sunflower | May 18, 2017 10:24:50 PM | 78
for your convenient reference, there are 5 current investigations into Trump (per the Guardian)

https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/ng-interactive/2017/may/18/the-investigations-swirling-around-donald-trump-a-short-guide .

Mueller is only involved in one, the first ""An FBI counter-intelligence investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 elections and possible collusion in this effort by the Trump campaign""

By focusing his energy on the outrage and insult of this witchhunt, Trump may have painted himself into a corner from which all escape routes involve loss of face and a his most loyal base of support ... for example, releasing his tax returns/sources of income ...

His only apparent silver lining is that Flynn and Rice (although details are unclear) appear to be not-cooperating and declining to appear ... whether they will actually commit follow through and risk "contempt of congress" charges remains to be seen... but I suspect there's hidden agenda (like an immunity deal) rather than some principled stand at work.

Jackrabbit | May 19, 2017 1:44:38 AM | 79
Wow what a show. Faux populist Obama was also politically weakened by crazy opposition. Faux populist Obama was also forced FORCED! to do the establishment's bidding.

Could Trump be the Republican Obama? Are we all falling for essentially the same con? Few can wrap their heads around that possibility. Yet ...

> Sanders was a sheepdog.

> Hillary's campaign was lackluster.

> Comey (who protected Hillary) acted to ensure a Trump victory.

> Trump has now bombed Syria twice and will be feted in KSA.

Alain B | May 19, 2017 2:45:31 AM | 81
https://www.nytimes.com/2017/05/17/us/politics/special-counsel-in-russia-investigation-raises-stakes-for-trump.html?smid=tw-nytimes&smtyp=cur&_r=0
Jonathan | May 19, 2017 3:10:25 AM | 82
Such investigations NEVER stick to their original, limited tasks but extend further and further.
That doesn't necessarily mean it'll be Trump's dirt that washes up. If Seth Rich is proven to have leaked the emails to Wikileaks, the Russian hacking narrative evaporates, and the Ukrainian collusion to manipulate the election from the Democrat side is legitimately within the ambit of the investigation. We may yet see the Democrat Party prosecuted as a continuing criminal enterprise, and none too soon.

@71 Petri Krohn,

They describe the capabilities of US Internet advertisers, even worse post-net-neutrality, and project it onto Russia. Their desperation reeks.

Anon | May 19, 2017 4:32:50 AM | 83
Jackrabbit

Obama was never in the "opposition", Trump is indeed in the opposition but the question is if he have the strength to stand up to these sick people in deepstate/msm. With attacks on Syria etc it doesnt look good but there is no comparsion to the wimp Obama.

pantaraxia | May 19, 2017 6:02:12 AM | 84
Just when you thought things couldn't get any crazier in this Looking Glass War, with all the hysteria over Trump's ultimate unpardonable sin - the revelation of an Israeli secret, this comes out (fwiw):

Intel Trump gave Russians came from Jordan, not Israel – report http://www.timesofisrael.com/intel-trump-gave-russians-was-from-jordan-not-israel-report/

"Jordan, not Israel, was likely the original source of secret intelligence information given by US President Donald Trump to the Russians, the Qatar-based al-Jazeera news network reported Thursday, citing current and former Jordanian intelligence officials

The sources said the intelligence that Trump shared with the Russians came mainly from Jordanian spies. Jordan, they said, has developed human intelligence resources with agents on the ground, including some who have infiltrated militia groups . When it comes to ISIL, unlike Jordan, Israel relies on its electronic surveillance collection and its intelligence sharing-arrangement with its Arab partners"

james | May 19, 2017 3:11:21 PM | 85
@84 pantaraxia.. i thought jordan was working for isis/israel, err i mean the usa.... i can't tell the difference.. times of israel - that is a reliable source, if ever there was one, lol...
darms | May 20, 2017 3:00:47 AM | 86
Pence is up to his eyeballs in this sh*t & is likely to be taken down as well. Wonder if Ryan will still be speaker once this stuff comes down (assuming it does)...
Anon | May 20, 2017 12:08:41 PM | 87
On the Mueller investigation:

"Politicians, journalists, academics, and even ordinary folks will be targeted by the government in the hunt for 'Putin's puppets.'"

http://russia-insider.com/en/politics/how-muellers-investigation-could-turn-raging-mccarthyesque-witchhunt/ri19884

pantaraxia | May 20, 2017 1:24:57 PM | 88
@ 85 james
re: times of israel - that is a reliable source, if ever there was one, lol...

"the Qatar-based al-Jazeera news network reported Thursday, citing current and former Jordanian intelligence officials" Which part of this sourcing in the article did you not understand? The more interesting questions are what is the purpose of releasing this information by a US puppet, who colluded in the release and how it plays into the 'Trump betrayed Israel' hysteria.

Jackrabbit | May 20, 2017 2:10:15 PM | 89
Anon @83

I think you misread or misunderstood what I wrote.

My thesis is this: both Obama and Trump are faux populists and are part and parcel of a 'faux populist model of governance'. Elements of this model are:

1. A craven narcisstic egotistic Leader (Obama, Trump) that is a willing tool because he/she intends to capture a future payoff for himself. They signal their willingness via:

> forgiving past abuses ("no-drama Obama"; Trump's not prosecuting Hillary)

> constraining their own power: Obama's bi-partisanship (termed "11-dimensional chess" by critics), Trump's brashness/recklessness that gives his opponents fodder ("tapes" on Comey, etc.)

2. Establishment-friendly VP as insurance. Both Biden and Pence are seen as 'reliable hands' by TPTB.

3. crazy opposition that is intended to weaken a faux populist leader and energize apologists. I call them "enforcers". By crazy opposition, I mean

> Obama: 'birthers' and smears like "socialist muslim".

Trump: Russia probe; smears like "the new Hitler"

4. apologists that take as a given that the President wants to fulfill the promises, both spoken and unspoken, that he has made to the people.

PS I wrote about this on my blog.
Jackrabbit | May 20, 2017 2:47:50 PM | 90
And, of course:
5. A compliant media
Other considerations: This is a toxic mix because it sends the message that neither your vote nor your opinion matters so why waste your time seeking out truth?
james | May 20, 2017 3:33:32 PM | 91
@88 pantaraxia.. i don't know that it matters either way... it is only interesting from the point of view of further obfuscation being created and moving away for the central fact that trump can share whatever info he wants to share.. now the irony here as i understand it, is nothing he shared was all that earth shattering - but no matter - witch hunt on trump must continue!
jfl | May 20, 2017 7:04:53 PM | 92
in what's termed the second of a series, someone named jonathan marshall makes the crucial point about the various 'lobbies' in the usofa ... How China Lobby Shaped America
In 1949, two members of Congress called for an investigation of the lobby's "brazen power." Rep. Mike Mansfield, a Montana Democrat who would later become Senate majority leader, accused Nationalist Chinese officials - who had fled the mainland for Taiwan that year in the wake of the communist revolution - of diverting U.S. aid to fund political propaganda in the United States.

Ironically, a timely dispensation of $800,000 from Nationalist Chinese officials in Taiwan to their New York office financed a successful campaign to squelch that proposed investigation.

... they are self-funding operations. once the money starts to flow a portion is set aside for kickbacks, bribes, and efforts to protect the mainstream funding itself. it is truly a parasitic operation that feeds on the fruits of its effort on others' behalf, and thus strengthens itself, becoming a stand-alone operation.

there are tens of thousands of people in ac/dc working in these operations, looking out for taiwan's interests, israel's interests, making sure that russia stays demonized ... all the various corporate issues ... but at base and before all else, looking out for number one.

a sort of 5th column of folks working on behalf of 5th columnists, subverting government in favor of the lucrative process of policy misdirection itself.

with a gang like that at the core of our government what, as they say, could go wrong?

Penelope | May 20, 2017 8:24:51 PM | 93
Y'all may remember that Trump's domestic business dealings had some Mob connections. I think Wm Engdahl, among other, reported on this. Well, if you google Trump and Russian Mafia you will see an entirely different idea as to what this attack on Trump might be about. I've not studied it, take no position. If I WERE interested, it's what I'd be looking at.

At this time, it seems to me a better use of one's time to avoid allowing the media to direct your time and attention, and instead to focus on deepening your knowledge of the international institutions' agenda for bringing about the last few steps to the NWO.

United Nations sustainable development agenda www.un.org/sustainabledevelopment/development-agenda/

On 1 January 2016, the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development - adopted by world leaders in September 2015 at an historic UN Summit - officially came into force. ... The SDGs, also known as Global Goals, build on the success of the

[May 22, 2017] Making Russia a scapegoat for political tension connected with the crumbling of the neoliberal society due to austerity, inequality and impoverishment of the lower 80% of population

Notable quotes:
"... "Corporate media and the intelligence community are united in making the Russia Federation the scapegoat for the crumbling of the West that is due to austerity, inequality and impoverishment. If a world war breaks out, that is it." ..."
"... Donald Trump used alt-right messaging to get into the White House but he and his third-rate staff haven't the slightest clue of what gave rise to the deplorables in the first place and how to address the root [causes of] despair of the western working class. ..."
May 22, 2017 | economistsview.typepad.com

libezkova, May 22, 2017 at 03:58 PM

A comment from MoA contains an insightful observation

"Corporate media and the intelligence community are united in making the Russia Federation the scapegoat for the crumbling of the West that is due to austerity, inequality and impoverishment. If a world war breaks out, that is it."

http://www.moonofalabama.org/2017/05/the-special-council-investigation-will-be-bad-for-trump.html#c6a00d8341c640e53ef01b7c8f9d50c970b

VietnamVet | May 18, 2017 9:19:08 PM | 75

This is tragic. Corporate media and the intelligence community are united in making the Russia Federation the scapegoat for the crumbling of the West that is due to austerity, inequality and impoverishment.

If a world war breaks out, that is it. Donald Trump used alt-right messaging to get into the White House but he and his third-rate staff haven't the slightest clue of what gave rise to the deplorables in the first place and how to address the root [causes of] despair of the western working class.

They will blunder about in lost befuddlement until they vanish.

[May 22, 2017] Corporate media and the intelligence community are united in making the Russia Federation the scapegoat for the crumbling of the West that is due to austerity, inequality and impoverishment

Notable quotes:
"... If a world war breaks out, that is it. Donald Trump used alt-right messaging to get into the White House but he and his third-rate staff haven't the slightest clue of what gave rise to the deplorables in the first place and how to address the root despair of the western working class ..."
May 18, 2017 | www.moonofalabama.org

VietnamVet | May 18, 2017 9:19:08 PM | 75

This is tragic. Corporate media and the intelligence community are united in making the Russia Federation the scapegoat for the crumbling of the West that is due to austerity, inequality and impoverishment.

If a world war breaks out, that is it. Donald Trump used alt-right messaging to get into the White House but he and his third-rate staff haven't the slightest clue of what gave rise to the deplorables in the first place and how to address the root despair of the western working class .

They will blunder about in lost befuddlement until they vanish.

[May 22, 2017] Economists View Links for 05-20-17

Notable quotes:
"... In any case Trump proved to be a very bad follower of Trumpism :-(. I have no further hopes for him. But still for me neocons remain the worst and the most dangerous enemies of humanity as they are open instigators of WWIII. So they still are even worse. ..."
"... Looks like Trump is not a leader and never has been one. He is a second rate showman and salesman. That's it. Looks like he already have burned every bridge and squandered every opportunity for non-interventionist policy of the USA. Saudi visit is just icing on the cake (he got a gold medal from the king who by his position is a Supreme leader of Wahhabies -- KSA official religion -- can you imagine that ? ) ..."
"... I like Ann Coulter's analogy: It's as if we're in Chicago, and Trump says he can get us to L.A. in six days; and then for the first three days we're driving towards New York. He can still turn around and get us to L.A. in three days. But, says Ann, she's getting nervous. And frankly chances at this point for a turn are slim to non-existent. Now Trump has all chances to became Republican Obama -- betrayer of his voters, another master of "bait and switch" maneuver. ..."
May 22, 2017 | economistsview.typepad.com
Fred C. Dobbs, May 21, 2017 at 08:20 PM
Trump Reaches Out to Sunni Nations, at Iran's Expense https://nyti.ms/2rHXZLi
NYT - BEN HUBBARD and THOMAS ERDBRINK - MAY 21

RIYADH, Saudi Arabia - As voters in Iran danced in the streets, celebrating the landslide re-election of a moderate as president, President Trump stood in front of a gathering of leaders from across the Muslim world and called on them to isolate a nation he said had "fueled the fires of sectarian conflict and terror."

That nation was Iran.

In using the headline address of his first foreign trip as president to declare his commitment to Sunni Arab nations, Mr. Trump signaled a return to an American policy built on alliances with Arab autocrats, regardless of their human rights records or policies that sometimes undermine American interests.

At the same time, he rejected the path taken by his predecessor, Barack Obama. Mr. Obama engaged with Iran to reach a breakthrough nuclear accord, which Mr. Trump's administration has acknowledged Iran is following.

Mr. Trump has presented the shift as a reinvestment in historical alliances with friendly nations in order to fight extremism and terrorism. But the juxtaposition of the election in Iran and the gathering in Saudi Arabia seemed to highlight a reality of the Middle East that presidents have long wrestled with: how to choose partners and seek American interests in a region torn by sectarian splits and competing agendas.

Iran and its proxies have effectively found themselves on the side of the United States in fighting the Islamic State in Iraq, while in Syria, they have been adversaries in their support for the rule of President Bashar al-Assad. Saudi Arabia has at times undermined the United States' efforts to stabilize Afghanistan.

"We are picking one side in this geopolitical struggle, and there is very little room for gray," said Frederic Wehrey, a senior fellow in the Middle East Program at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace. "Sectarianism is a byproduct of this geopolitical rivalry, and we are inadvertently picking one side in this sectarian struggle."

The two scenes - dancing in the streets in Tehran and Sunni leaders gathered in an opulent hall in Riyadh - also pointed to a complicating reality in the Middle East: There is often a disconnect between the leaders and their people.

In his remarks, Mr. Trump signaled his intention to end engagement with Iran, suggesting that it does not encourage change from inside the country.

But in Iran, many were pushing for change. Emboldened by the election results, crowds of Iranians in the capital, Tehran, demanded what they hope President Hassan Rouhani's second term will bring: the release of opposition figures, more freedom of thought and fewer restrictions on daily life.

Mr. Rouhani's supporters also expect his victory, with 57 percent of the vote, to bolster his outreach efforts to the West and the pursuit of more foreign investment to lift Iran's ailing economy.

For those who voted for Mr. Rouhani, there was a feeling of tremendous relief that his challenger, the hard-line cleric Ebrahim Raisi, who criticized the nuclear deal with the United States and other Western powers, had lost.

"Bye-bye, Raisi," the crowds chanted during the street gatherings.

"He faces a difficult task," Fazel Meybodi, a Shiite Muslim cleric from the city of Qum, said of Mr. Rouhani. "Now he must provide more freedoms, break the hard-line monopoly on the state-run radio and television, and increase freedom of press."

To achieve all that, Mr. Rouhani must persuade the hard-line-dominated judiciary and security forces to change their outlook, Mr. Meybodi said. "If he fails to deliver on at least 70 percent of those promises, his future is dark," he added.

For decades, Saudi Arabia and Iran have competed for religious leadership and political influence across the Muslim world and beyond.

Saudi Arabia, the Sunni monarchy that controls Islam's holiest sites, sees itself as the natural leader of the Muslim world and has used its lavish oil wealth to spread its austere version of the faith.

Iran, meanwhile, is the world's largest Shiite nation and is led by clerics who seek to export the ideology of political Islam that brought them to power in 1979.

Each country accuses the other of sowing instability.

Iran accuses Saudi Arabia of spreading an intolerant creed that fuels terrorism and threatens minorities. Saudi Arabia says Iran works through nonstate actors to weaken Arab nations.

In his speech on Sunday, Mr. Trump, a guest of the Saudi monarch, spoke of a stronger alliance with mostly Sunni Muslim nations to fight terrorism and extremist ideology and to push back against Iran.

"From Lebanon to Iraq to Yemen, Iran funds arms and trains terrorists, militias and other extremist groups that spread destruction and chaos across the region," Mr. Trump told dozens of Muslim heads of state. "It is a government that speaks openly of mass murder, vowing the destruction of Israel, death to America, and ruin for many leaders and nations in this very room."

That pointed to a departure from the policies of Mr. Obama, who pushed Persian Gulf countries like Saudi Arabia to move toward greater self-sufficiency in defense while pressing for the agreement to limit Iran's nuclear program.

Proponents of that approach hoped that engagement with Iran would lead to greater moderation among its leaders, paving the way for its eventual reintegration into the world system.

But the nuclear deal angered gulf nations, who felt that it rewarded Iran for bad behavior while doing nothing to constrain its destabilizing activities in Arab countries.

For them, Mr. Trump's return to America's traditional allies was a great relief.

"The most important thing is that the relationship between Saudi Arabia and the United States is built on vision and numbers, not on slogans. They are building on shared interests," said Ghassan Charbel, the editor in chief of Asharq Al-Awsat, a Saudi-owned newspaper. "It shows that the majority in the Arab and Islamic worlds will be close to the United States if it chooses to engage."

The Arab nations hate Iran for using nonstate actors in Arab countries. Iran was fundamental in the creation of Hezbollah, the Lebanese militant group and political party that now has Lebanon's strongest military force. More recently, Iran has sent military aid to help Mr. Assad fight rebels seeking his ouster, while also supporting militias in Iraq, Bahrain and Yemen.

But there is a gap between Iran's older, ruling clerics and the ambitions of its people, as was made clear when Iranians came out in force to dance and protest in the streets this weekend, breaking Islamic rules and political taboos, in celebration of Mr. Rouhani's re-election.

The election outcome was widely seen as evidence that Iran's society has changed radically. Influenced by satellite television, cheaper international travel, the internet, waves of migration to big cities and access to higher education, most of Iranian society now adheres to middle-class values.

This collided with the anti-Western ideology and strict interpretation of Islam represented by Mr. Raisi and promoted by state organizations.

Some used the election's success to criticize Mr. Trump's visit to Saudi Arabia.

"Iran - fresh from real elections - attacked by @POTUS in that bastion of democracy & moderation," Iran's foreign minister, Mohammad Javad Zarif, wrote on Twitter, speaking of Saudi Arabia.

Hamidreza Taraghi, a hard-line analyst, said of Mr. Trump, "This man just wants to sell American weapons and use Iran as an excuse."

In deepening the United States' alliance with gulf countries, Mr. Trump is bringing it closer to nations that share few cultural values with the United States and have sometimes acted against its interests. ...

libezkova - , May 21, 2017 at 09:52 PM
"In deepening the United States' alliance with gulf countries, Mr. Trump is bringing it closer to nations that share few cultural values with the United States and have sometimes acted against its interests. ..."

Being anti-war puts me in "oppressed minority" position here, but may I humbly suggest one thing: may be he is not a Russian agent like many pro-Hillary commenters here for some strange reason assume, but a closet Wahhabi stooge and a special prosecutor should be assigned for a different investigation ;-)

In any case Trump proved to be a very bad follower of Trumpism :-(. I have no further hopes for him. But still for me neocons remain the worst and the most dangerous enemies of humanity as they are open instigators of WWIII. So they still are even worse.

It would be nice to prosecute them all for treason (instead of this useless witch hunt for Russian agents that neocons instigated for their nefarious purposes), but as they are in power this possibility is pretty remote :-)

Looks like Trump is not a leader and never has been one. He is a second rate showman and salesman. That's it. Looks like he already have burned every bridge and squandered every opportunity for non-interventionist policy of the USA. Saudi visit is just icing on the cake (he got a gold medal from the king who by his position is a Supreme leader of Wahhabies -- KSA official religion -- can you imagine that ? )

I like Ann Coulter's analogy: It's as if we're in Chicago, and Trump says he can get us to L.A. in six days; and then for the first three days we're driving towards New York. He can still turn around and get us to L.A. in three days. But, says Ann, she's getting nervous. And frankly chances at this point for a turn are slim to non-existent. Now Trump has all chances to became Republican Obama -- betrayer of his voters, another master of "bait and switch" maneuver.

That does not make neocon warmonger Hillary any better, but still to understand that we have had no choice between two equally despicable swamp creatures is depressing. Looks like 100% authentic "Back in the USSR" story.

[May 22, 2017] Manafort, Stone Give Russia Docs To Senate Intel Committee

They can dig this dirt to years. Trump is now a hostage.
Notable quotes:
"... A spokesman for Manafort, Jason Maloni, confirmed that Manafort turned over documents, adding that Manafort remains interested in cooperating with the Senate investigation. ..."
"... NBC adds that it was too early to tell whether the documents from Manafort and Stone "suggested they had fully complied with the request." In a parallel process, as part of the FBI's Russia collusion investigation, federal grand juries have issued subpoenas for records relating to both Flynn and Manafort. ..."
May 22, 2017 | www.zerohedge.com
While Michael Flynn may refusing to comply with the Senate Intel Committee's probe of Russian interference, two other former associates of Donald Trump complied on Monday afternoon, and according to NBC , Paul Manafort and Roger Stone have turned over documents to the Senate Intelligence Committee in its Russia investigation, providing "all documents consistent with their specific request." As reported previously, the committee sent document requests to Manafort and Stone, as well as Carter Page and Mike Flynn, seeking information related to dealings with Russia. So far Page has not yet complied, while Flynn it was confirmed today, planned to plead the Fifth as a reason not to comply with a committee subpoena, citing "escalating public frenzy" as part of the ongoing probe.

According to NBC, the committee's letter to Page asked him "to list any Russian official or business executive he met with between June 16, 2015 and Jan. 20, 2017. It also asked him to provide information about Russia-related real estate transactions during that period. And it seeks all his email or other communications during that period with Russians, or with the Trump campaign about Russia or Russians."

While the precise contents is unknown, similar letters were sent to Manafort and Stone, who then sent the requested information to investigators by last Friday's deadline.

"I gave them all documents that were consistent with their specific request," Stone said in an email to NBC News.

A spokesman for Manafort, Jason Maloni, confirmed that Manafort turned over documents, adding that Manafort remains interested in cooperating with the Senate investigation.

NBC adds that it was too early to tell whether the documents from Manafort and Stone "suggested they had fully complied with the request." In a parallel process, as part of the FBI's Russia collusion investigation, federal grand juries have issued subpoenas for records relating to both Flynn and Manafort.

Meanwhile, Flynn's assertion of the Fifth Amendment would make it difficult for the Senate to enforce its subpoena, NBC News reported citing Senate sources: "The Senate could go to court, or go ask the Justice Department to go to court to enforce it, but either actin would require the Republicans who control the chamber to agree." Trump fired Flynn as his national security advisor in February after misleading Vice President Mike Pence and other administration officials about conversations he had with Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak about U.S. sanctions on Russia.

WillyGroper , May 22, 2017 4:18 PM

if the ruskie investigation fails to unravel the deals/pay to play treason of hrc, it's a screenplay.

Honest John , May 22, 2017 4:19 PM

CNN led off their newscast saying that pleading the 5th is an admission of guilt. Only guilty people do it.

How do they get away with this stuff? And people buy into it.

dexter_morgan - Honest John , May 22, 2017 4:24 PM

Then all of Hillary's staff is guilty on the email probe stuff, they all claimed the 5th. Didn't Loretty Lynch or Holder also plead the 5th recently?

Grandad Grumps , May 22, 2017 4:31 PM

This is hilarious. Is there supposed to be some connection between meeting with Russians and rigging an election?

I am thinking that if there is to be an investigation then Congress needs to cast a wider net to include all of the past three administrations, All international banks and their legal representatives, all of Congress and everyone who has ever contributed to the DNC or RNC.

If they are going to hunt for witches, why not make it open season on ALL witches.

My personal preference is to be on friendly terms with both Russia and China ... not to mentioned Iran, people of all religions and the other countries that do not have BIS tied central banks. Why do we tolerate people telling us that we have to hate someone?

[May 22, 2017] NSA is here to help you or Spying as a service (SAAS)

May 22, 2017 | www.unz.com

Willem Hendrik, May 21, 2017 at 9:50 pm GMT

Look at the bright side; If you lost the grocery list your wife gave you, call the NSA and ask them to send you a copy.

If your boss denies promising you a raise call NSA for supporting materials.

SAAS ( Spying as a service)

[May 22, 2017] How Did Russiagate Start

Notable quotes:
"... Intelligence [agencies] started #Russiagate ..."
"... But why hide your investigation in Obama's administration, only to tell superiors about it under Trump? Why keep a secret from Clapper and not Coats? Moreover, why hide it from the voting public before the election, but announce it on live TV on March 20th? ..."
"... We should care. The uncertainty has led to widespread public terror, mass media hysteria and excess , and possibly even panic in the White House itself, where, who knows, Trump may even have risked military confrontation with Russia in an effort to shake the collusion accusations. All of this is exacerbated by the constant stream of leaks and hints at mother lodes of evidence that are just around the corner. It's quite literally driving the country crazy. ..."
"... Mueller quit his regular job, so he needs to be Special Counsel for as long as possible. So, it's (2). He doesn't have to say he's found anything, he just needs to say the investigation continues. It could continue into and after the next general election, making Trump a lame duck from now until the end of his term. ..."
May 21, 2017 | www.rollingstone.com

Intelligence [agencies] started #Russiagate

Speaking generally, Clapper seemed to imply that the Trump-Russia-collusion scandal, the thing colloquially known as #Russiagate all over the world now, may have originated in information gleaned by the intelligence community, who in turn may have tipped off the FBI.

Amid the chaos of James Comey's firing, new questions about the timeline of his fateful investigation

... ... ...

Todd went out of his way to hammer at the question of whether or not he knew of any evidence of collusion. Clapper again said, "Not to my knowledge." Here Todd appropriately pressed him: If it did exist, would you know?

To this, Clapper merely answered, "This could have unfolded or become available in the time since I left the government."

That's not an unequivocal "yes," but it's close. There's no way to compare Clapper's statements on March 5th to his interviews last week and not feel that something significant changed between then and now.

Clapper's statements seem even stranger in light of James Comey's own testimony in the House on March 20th.

In that appearance, Comey – who by then had dropped his bombshell about the existence of an investigation into Trump campaign figures – was asked by New York Republican Elise Stefanik when he notified the DNI about his inquiry.

"Good question," Comey said. "Obviously, the Department of Justice has been aware of it all along. The DNI, I don't know what the DNI's knowledge of it was, because we didn't have a DNI – until Mr. Coats took office and I briefed him his first morning."

Comey was saying that he hadn't briefed the DNI because between January 20th, when Clapper left office, and March 16th, when former Indiana senator and now Trump appointee Dan Coats took office, the DNI position was unfilled.

But Comey had said the counterintelligence investigation dated back to July, when he was FBI director under a Democratic president. So what happened between July and January?

If Comey felt the existence of his investigation was so important that he he had to disclose it to DNI Coats on Coats' first day in office, why didn't he feel the same need to disclose the existence of an investigation to Clapper at any time between July and January?

Furthermore, how could the FBI participate in a joint assessment about Russian efforts to meddle in American elections and not tell Clapper and the other intelligence chiefs about what would seemingly be a highly germane counterintelligence investigation in that direction?

Again, prior to last week, Clapper had said he would know if there was a FISA warrant issued on this matter. But then on April 11th, law enforcement and government officials leaked – anonymously, as has been the case throughout most of this story – that the FBI had obtained a FISA warrant for surveillance of Trump associate Carter Page.

So what's going on here? In talking to people on the Hill last week, I heard a number of theories.

One interpretation is that the FBI, concerned about operational security, conducted a secret investigation during the last months of Barack Obama's presidency without informing the likes of Clapper and other agency chiefs.

But why hide your investigation in Obama's administration, only to tell superiors about it under Trump? Why keep a secret from Clapper and not Coats? Moreover, why hide it from the voting public before the election, but announce it on live TV on March 20th?

Another interpretation is that Clapper was simply not telling the whole truth, either on March 20th or last week. In this version of events, he knew of the FBI investigation all along. More than one person I spoke with found it implausible that Clapper could have been ignorant of any investigation, especially following the issuance of the reported FISA warrant against Page.

But the context of these interviews still makes Clapper dissembling in his March interview a strange and unlikely possibility. Clapper has not been in the habit of doing Trump political favors this season. And if indeed it's standard practice for a DNI to not know what counterintelligence operations the FBI might be up to, it would have made a lot more sense for Clapper to say that on Meet the Press on March 5th.

Instead, he did Trump a solid by stating unequivocally that there were no FISA warrants out, and that he would have known if there were, adding he had seen no evidence of collusion. Why?

When James Comey was fired last week, I didn't know what to think, because so much of this story is still hidden from view.

Certainly firing an FBI director who has announced the existence of an investigation targeting your campaign is going to be improper in almost every case. And in his post-firing rants about tapes and loyalty, President Trump validated every criticism of him as an impetuous, unstable, unfit executive who additionally is ignorant of the law and lunges for authoritarian solutions in a crisis.

But it's our job in the media to be bothered by little details, and the strange timeline of the Trump-Russia investigation qualifies as a conspicuous loose end.

What exactly is the FBI investigating? Why was it kept secret from other intelligence chiefs, if that's what happened? That matters, if we're trying to gauge what happened last week.

Is it a FARA (Foreign Agent Registration Act) case involving former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn or a lower-level knucklehead like Carter Page ?

Since FARA is violated more or less daily in Washington and largely ignored by authorities unless it involves someone without political connections (an awful lot of important people in Washington who appear to be making fortunes lobbying for foreign countries are merely engaged in "litigation support," if you ask them), it would be somewhat anticlimactic to find out that this was the alleged crime underlying our current white-hot constitutional crisis.

Is it something more serious than a FARA case, like money-laundering for instance, involving someone higher up in the Trump campaign? That would indeed be disturbing, and it would surely be improper – possibly even impeachable, depending upon what exactly happened behind the scenes – for Trump to get in the way of such a case playing itself out.

But even a case like that would be very different from espionage and treason. Gutting a money-laundering case involving a campaign staffer would be more like garden-variety corruption than the cloak-and-dagger nightmares currently consuming the popular imagination.

However, let's say the FBI is actually investigating collusion between the Trump campaign and the Russian state. That's the most serious possibility, and the one exciting so much public dread.

If it's that, what's at the heart of that case? Why can't we be told what's going on? Operational secrecy would be a believable excuse, were it not for the fact that so much else has been leaked. Intelligence sources even appeared to give up their ability to capture Russian officials celebrating Trump's election win. If something like that can be leaked, and if even foreign governments can be told about "leverages of pressure" Russia allegedly has on Trump , it stands to reason that the American public should have heard what's behind the Trump-Russia investigation by now.

Trump easily could have committed some disqualifying act in response to this scandal. The worry about that is why we've always needed an independent investigation.

Such an investigation into Trump's campaign might very well uncover a range of improprieties and shady dealings by some of the campaign "associates" who've figured into news reports. This wouldn't be surprising, I don't think, even to some of the people in the White House.

But when it comes to the collusion investigation, there are serious questions. A lot of our civil liberties protections and rules of press ethics are designed to prevent exactly this situation, in which a person lingers for extended periods of time under public suspicion without being aware of the exact nature, or origin, of the accusations.

It's why liberal thinkers have traditionally abhorred secret courts, secret surveillance and secret evidence, and in the past would have reflexively discouraged the news media from printing the unverified or unverifiable charges emanating from such secret sources. But because it's Donald Trump, no one seems to care.

We should care. The uncertainty has led to widespread public terror, mass media hysteria and excess , and possibly even panic in the White House itself, where, who knows, Trump may even have risked military confrontation with Russia in an effort to shake the collusion accusations. All of this is exacerbated by the constant stream of leaks and hints at mother lodes of evidence that are just around the corner. It's quite literally driving the country crazy.

The public deserves to know what's going on. It deserved to know before the election, it deserved to know before the inauguration, and it deserves to know now.

Paulytical Rob Kaufman 3 days ago
Mueller quit his regular job, so he needs to be Special Counsel for as long as possible. So, it's (2). He doesn't have to say he's found anything, he just needs to say the investigation continues. It could continue into and after the next general election, making Trump a lame duck from now until the end of his term.
Thomas Roberts Rob Kaufman 3 days ago
I think McCain might give Clapper a go for first place.

ernie_oertle Thomas Roberts 21 hours ago

I dunno. There is alot of competition = DamascusNancy, Shummer-Hits-the-Fan, TomPerez, SenatorTurban, Lieawotha, JoeOBiden, BS Bernie, Maxine, BarbaraBoxer, AlGreen, MitchMcConnell, AlecBaldwin, TrevorNoah, SteponColbear, JannWenner, CaliphKeith al-Ellison
furtive 17 hours ago
Attorney General Robert H. Jackson;
"The prosecutor has more control over life, liberty, and reputation than any other person in America. His discretion is tremendous. . . .While the prosecutor at his best is one of the most beneficent forces in our society, when he acts from malice or other base motives, he is one of the worst."

A prosecutor has almost unilateral, unchecked ability to destroy the lives of those he charges. It is beyond troubling that our top law enforcement officer chooses the company of those who repeatedly failed their duty.

mitrom 18 hours ago
It's obvious that this Russia-Trump investigation is a ruse to spy on Trump and his associates for dirt. I'm sure the Obama Admin spied on other political foes. His admin has a history of it. Let's hope that Mueller actually has some integrity and finds the truth.

furtive mitrom 17 hours ago

See: Trevor Aaronson: "The Terror Factory: Inside the FBI's Manufactured War On Terrorism,"
Irish Good ol boy Mueller as FBI DIRECTOR created the Terror Factory- conspired to entrap Muslims and arrested them as terrorists to justify the FBI's inflated budget.
The FBI are the keystone cops. They are coverup operators & incompetent. Nothing but a gangster operation.

Mueller mentored Comey. Both are corrupt, pretending to be patriotic.
Comey got $3 million as a "board member" at Lockheed Martin to shut down Clintons Treason investigation.
Mueller wants Trump's tax returns to dig into. He has UNLIMITED boundaries to probe.

Obama never gave up his life to an independent counsel. Lynch Holder & Yates protected him.

Rod Rosenstein must be compromised. No other answer why he didn't protect Trump.

Gangsters are running our country like a banana republic.
No honest person can lead these criminals. They turn the tables & charge the innocent.

(See Senator Stevens because he ran for another term in Alaska. They killed him!)

Irredeemable Deplorable 18 hours ago
"Russiagate" is going to backfire on the DemocRats big time. I can't wait for the finale.

furtive 19 hours ago

Hey, Matt,

Substitute Trump for Hil-Lia-y & any special counsel will have enough
evidence to execute her.

Why doesn't Tahibbi investigate the uranium hil-liar y sold to the Russians & how she LAUNDERED A payoff INTO THE CLINTON FOUNDATION; or Why the FBI DIDN'T SEIZE THE DNC COMPUTERS; or why was Seth Rich assassinated?

Or how john podesta got rich on Russian banking while working in the Obama White House.

What came first, Matt, voter fraud or Trump's large crowds?

Read the book, "Shattered" & you will discover how & Hil-liar-y CONSPIRED TO SPIN THE WAG THE DOG EXCUSE AS A RUSSIAN HACK WHEN IT WAS SETH RICH , & they murdered him.

Gumshoe reporter or Goebbels parrot, which are you, Matt?

L. Wm. Roberts 19 hours ago
Russian-connection my hynnie --- Is the DNC and Hillary connection to Wikileaks Source Seth Rich and his probable actual death in the Hospital, hours after the time recorded on his death-certificate, news-worthy yet... or is Faceplant and Tweeker still deleting the message?
http://www.wnd.com/2017/05/...
https://medium.com/@caityjo...
http://www.news.com.au/tech...
https://www.youtube.com/wat...
PNW_Patriot 20 hours ago
Maybe the investigation is a ruse started by Obama apparatchiks with the idea that Trump would self-destruct under the pressure Looks like it's working.
burningtree 20 hours ago
The "Russia" investigation is a red herring, a hoax. Can anyone, anyone name the statute that is being referenced for this "investigation?" They can't because there is none. Is there any claim or evidence that a single vote was compromised by the "Russians" in favor of Trump? Anyway, they don't want him POTUS, because he is no pushover, like HRC would have been. it's all a fiction, all of it.

[May 22, 2017] Newt Gingrich repeats Seth Rich conspiracy theory in Fox appearance by Lois Beckett

Guardian defends Hillary. Again. They also are afraid to open the comment section on this article.
Notable quotes:
"... A prominent ally of Donald Trump suggested on Sunday that the - - special counsel appointed to investigate alleged links between the president's aides and - - Russia should instead focus on the murder last year of a young Democratic staffer, Seth Rich, which has become the focus of conspiracy theorists . ..."
"... This week, the Russian embassy in the UK shared the conspiracy on Twitter, CNN reported , calling Rich a murdered "WikiLeaks informer" and claiming that the British mainstream media was "so busy accusing Russian hackers to take notice". ..."
"... "He's been killed, and apparently nothing serious has been done to investigate his murder. So, I'd like to see how [former FBI director Robert] Mueller is going to define what his assignment is, and if it's only narrowly Trump, the country will not learn what it needs to learn about foreign involvement in American politics." ..."
"... The Rich family has sent Wheeler a cease-and-desist letter, threatening legal action if he continues to discuss the case, the Washington Post reported . ..."
May 22, 2017 | - www.theguardian.com
Trump confidante and husband of ambassadorial nominee repeats WikiLeaks theory denounced as 'fake news' by family of murdered DNC staffer Sunday 21 May 2017, 16.48 EDT Last modified on Monday 22 May 2017

A prominent ally of Donald Trump suggested on Sunday that the - - special counsel appointed to investigate alleged links between the president's aides and - - Russia should instead focus on the murder last year of a young Democratic staffer, Seth Rich, which has become the focus of conspiracy theorists .

In an appearance on Fox and Friends less than two days after his wife was - - proposed as ambassador to the Holy See , Newt Gingrich – former speaker of the House, 2012 presidential candidate and a Trump confidante – publicly endorsed the conspiracy theory that Rich was "assassinated" after giving Democratic National Committee emails to WikiLeaks.

Rich, 27, was shot dead in the early hours of 10 July 2016, as he walked home in the Bloomingdale neighborhood of Washington. In August, the WikiLeaks founder, Julian Assange, - - insinuated that Rich had been a source. Police initially explored whether Rich's murder might be connected to robberies in the area, according to a local news report , and officials in the capital have publicly debunked other claims.

"This is a robbery that ended tragically," Kevin Donahue, Washington's deputy mayor for public safety, told NBC News this week. "That's bad enough for our city, and I think it is irresponsible to conflate this into something that doesn't connect to anything that the detectives have found. No WikiLeaks connection."

On Sunday, the Washington DC police public affairs office did not immediately respond to a request for further comment.

In January, American intelligence agencies concluded with " high confidence " in a public report that Russian military intelligence was responsible for hacking the DNC and obtaining and relaying private messages to WikiLeaks, which made a series of embarrassing public disclosures. The goal, the agencies concluded, was to undermine the candidacy of Hillary Clinton and boost Trump, as well as hurt Americans' trust in their own democracy.

This week, the Russian embassy in the UK shared the conspiracy on Twitter, CNN reported , calling Rich a murdered "WikiLeaks informer" and claiming that the British mainstream media was "so busy accusing Russian hackers to take notice".

The Rich family has repeatedly denied that there is any evidence behind the conspiracy theories and called on Fox News to retract its coverage of their son's murder. Earlier this week, a spokesman for the family said in a statement that "anyone who continues to push this fake news story after it was so thoroughly debunked is proving to the world they have a transparent political agenda or are a sociopath".

On Fox and Friends, Gingrich said: "We have this very strange story here of this young man who worked for the DNC who was apparently assassinated at four in the morning having given WikiLeaks something like 23,000 – I'm sorry, 53,000 – emails and 17,000 attachments.

"Nobody's investigating that, and what does that tell you about what was going on? Because it turns out it wasn't the Russians, it was this young guy who, I suspect, who was disgusted by the corruption of the Democratic National Committee.

"He's been killed, and apparently nothing serious has been done to investigate his murder. So, I'd like to see how [former FBI director Robert] Mueller is going to define what his assignment is, and if it's only narrowly Trump, the country will not learn what it needs to learn about foreign involvement in American politics."

Last week, the private investigator and Fox News commentator Rod Wheeler claimed that evidence existed that Rich had been in contact with WikiLeaks. Questioned by CNN, however, he said: "I only got that [information] from the reporter at Fox News" and added that he did not have any evidence himself.

"Using the legacy of a murder victim in such an overtly political way is morally reprehensible," a Rich family spokesman told CNN.

The Rich family has sent Wheeler a cease-and-desist letter, threatening legal action if he continues to discuss the case, the Washington Post reported .

[May 22, 2017] The Russian Obsession Goes Back Decades by Jacob G. Hornberger

Notable quotes:
"... Just consider the accusations that have been leveled at the president: ..."
"... He has committed treason by befriending Russia and other enemies of America. ..."
"... He has subjugated America's interests to Moscow. ..."
"... President Donald Trump? No, President John F. Kennedy. What lots of Americans don't realize, because it was kept secret from them for so long, is that what Trump has been enduring from the national-security establishment, the mainstream press, and the American right-wing for his outreach to, or "collusion with," Russia pales compared to what Kennedy had to endure for committing the heinous "crime" of reaching out to Russia and the rest of the Soviet Union in a spirit of peace and friendship. They hated him for it. They abused him. They insulted him. They belittled him. They called him naïve. They said he was a traitor. All of the nasties listed above, plus more, were contained in an advertisement and a flier that appeared in Dallas on the morning of November 22, 1963, the day that Kennedy was assassinated. They can be read here and here . Ever since then, some people have tried to make it seem like the advertisement and flier expressed only the feelings of extreme right-wingers in Dallas. That's nonsense. They expressed the deeply held convictions of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, the CIA, the conservative movement, and many people within the mainstream media and Washington establishment. In June 1963, Kennedy threw down the gauntlet in a speech he delivered at American University, now entitled the " Peace Speech ." It was one of the most remarkable speeches ever delivered by an American president. It was broadcast all across the communist Soviet Union, the first time that had ever been done. ..."
"... Kennedy wasn't dumb. He knew what he was up against. He had heard Eisenhower warn the American people in his Farewell Address about the dangers to their freedom and democratic way of life posed by the military establishment. After Kennedy had read the novel Seven Days in May, ..."
"... Kennedy didn't stop with his Peace Speech. He also began negotiating a treaty with the Soviets to end above-ground nuclear testing, an action that incurred even more anger and ire within the Pentagon and the CIA. ..."
"... By this time, Kennedy's war with the national-security establishment was in full swing. He had already vowed to tear the CIA into a thousand pieces and scatter it to the winds after its perfidious conduct in the Bay of Pigs fiasco. By this time, he had also lost all confidence in the military after it proposed an all-out surprise nuclear attack on the Soviet Union, much as Japan had done at Pearl Harbor, after the infamous plan known as Operation Northwoods, which proposed terrorist attacks and plane hijackings carried out by U.S. agents posing as Cuban communists, so as to provide a pretext for invading Cuba, and after the Cuban Missile Crisis, when the military establishment accused him of appeasement and treason for agreeing not to ever invade Cuba again. ..."
"... What Kennedy didn't know was that his "secret" negotiations with the Soviet and Cuban communists weren't so secret after all. As it turns out, it was a virtual certainty that the CIA (or NSA) was listening in on telephone conversations of Cuban officials at the UN in New York City, much as the CIA and NSA still do today, during which they would have learned what the pre