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Russiagate -- a color revolution against Trump by neocons and DemoRats

(also sometimes called Purple revolution)

Looks like Trump surrendered after just 100 of anti-Russian smear campaign launched by neocons,  but they still want to finish him
Two third of US population now is brainwashed into adamantly anti-Russian mindset, increasing the risk of the major war
 

News Neocon foreign policy is a disaster for the USA Donald Trump -- an unusual fighter against excesses of neoliberal globalization Recommended Links Coordinated set of leaks as a color revolution tool Trump vs. Deep State Do the US intelligence agencies attempt to influence the US Presidential elections ? History of American False Flag Operations Did Obama order wiretaps of Trump conversations
National Security State The problem of control of intelligence services in democratic societies Fake News scare and US NeoMcCartyism Anti-Russian hysteria in connection emailgate and DNC leak DNC and Podesta emails leak: blaming Vladimir Putin Hillary Clinton email scandal Anti Trump Hysteria Michael Flynn Pope Francis on danger of neoliberalism
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First let's discuss the historical origins of  the  term “color revolution”. The latter is a new  subversive tactics which was successfully used as a means to triggering “regime change”, which have emerged in a large number of countries in the course of the last decade, especially in xUSSR space (Georgia, Ukraine, Modlova, Russia, etc). But the key methods of "color revolution" coup d'état can be traced to Chilean coup d'état or even earlier.

The “color revolution” is a US intelligence operation which consists of covertly supporting as well as infiltrating protest movements with a view to triggering “regime change” under the banner of a pro-democracy template. The objective of a “color revolution” is to manipulate or delegitimize elections (if the winner in nor desired candidate), foment social unrest and use the protest movement to topple an existing legitimate government. After that install a compliant pro-US government (or “puppet regime”). This "outsize" role of intelligence agencies is what we observe  in the current campaign to de-legitimize and depose President Trump.  As James Petras observed (Imperial Power Centers, July 24, 2017) :

With the ascent of Donald Trump to the US Presidency, imperial rulership has become openly contested terrain, fought over amid unyielding aspirants seeking to overthrow the democratically elected regime.

While Presidents rule, today the entire state structure is riven by rival power centers. At the moment, all of the power seekers are at war to impose their rule over the empire.

In the first place, the strategically placed security apparatus is no longer under Presidential control: They operate in coordination with insurgent Congressional power centers, mass media and extra-governmental power configurations among the oligarchs (business, merchants, arms manufacturers, Zionists and special interest lobbies).

Sectors of the state apparatus and bureaucracy investigate the executive, freely leaking damaging reports to the media, distorting fabricating and/or magnifying incidents. They publicly pursue a course with the goal of regime change.

The FBI, Homeland Security, the CIA and other power configurations are acting as crucial allies to the coup-makers seeking to undermine Presidential control over the empire. No doubt, many factions within the regional offices nervously look on, waiting to see if the President will be defeated by these opposing power configurations or will survive and purge their current directors.

The Pentagon contains both elements that are pro as well as anti-Presidential power: Some active generals are aligned with the prime movers pushing for regime change, while others oppose this movement. Both contending forces influence and dictate imperial military policies.

The most visible and aggressive advocates of regime change are found in the militarist wing of the Democratic Party. They are embedded in the Congress and allied with police state militarists in and out of Washington.

Engineered protest movements are carefully planned. Again the key feature of all color revolutions  us that they are essentially intelligence ops performed via NGO and similar organization, with huge role of the US embassy as the coordinating center.  They use non-governmental organizations and opposition meddia to recruit protesters.  Creation of powerful opposition media is the necessary prerequisite step in preparation of the color revolution. The protest need to be televized in order to amplify their significance and create a critical mass of discontent among the population. Corruption is the davorite deliigtimization tacktics in such events.  As if it can be stopped by a regime change. Often even more corrupt oligarchs come to power as a result, only more  subservent to multinational corporations. And BTW its multinationals such as GE which control the US media too. How convenient.   

The color revolution usually precede a "quite period" in which "professional protesters" are trained, indoctrinated and financed, but no mass street protest occur: 

In August 1999, the CIA set up a training program for a Serbian NGO entitled OTPOR which subsequently played a key role in the engineered protest movement conducive to the downfall of president Slobodan Milosevic. A few years later, OTPOR established a training and strategizing outfit entitled  The Centre for Applied Non Violent Action and Strategies (CANVAS). CANVAS became a consulting outfit specializing in “Revolution” on contract to the CIA.

... ... ...

What is at stake is a “color revolution” Made in America which is marked by fundamental rivalries within the US establishment, namely the clash between competing corporate factions, each of which is intent upon exerting control over the incoming US presidency.

The OTPOR-CANVAS-CIA model is nonetheless relevant. Several foundations involved in funding color revolutions internationally are involved in funding the anti-Trump campaign.

Moreover, while CANVAS’ mandate is to oversee “color revolutions” internationally, it also has links with a number of NGOs currently involved in the anti-Trump campaign including  The Occupy Wall Street Movement (OWS). OWS launched by Adbusters was funded via the Tides Foundation which in turn is funded by a number of corporate foundations and charities, including the Ford Foundation, Gates Foundation  and the Open Society Institute. Ford is known to have historical links to US intelligence.

It is worth noting that the raised fist logo first launched by OTPOR in 1999 as a symbol of CIA sponsored color revolutions (including Egypt during the Arab Spring), also constitutes the symbol of several organizations involved in the anti-Trump engineered protest movement.

The Inauguration Disrupt Campaign: Disruptj20

... The Disruptj20.org campaign is calling for the disruption of the inauguration of Donald Trump on January 20, 2017:

#DisruptJ20 is supported by the work of the DC Welcoming Committee, a collective of experienced local activists and out-of-work gravediggers acting with national support. We’re building the framework needed for mass protests to shut down the inauguration of Donald Trump and planning widespread direct actions to make that happen. We’re also providing services like housing, food, and even legal assistance to anyone who wants to join us.

“Color Revolution” Against Donald Trump“Color Revolution” Against Donald Trump

The actions contemplated include “setting up blockades at checkpoints to prevent people from gaining access to the inauguration proceedings”. A spokesperson confirmed that  #DisruptJ20 campaign would be “creating a framework to support mass protests and direct action to shut down the inauguration of Donald Trump” .

This could potentially lead to violent clashes with tens of thousands of Trump supporters, which is the ultimate objective of an engineered “Color Revolution” style protest movement supported covertly by US intelligence. It’s part of the logic of a “color revolution” scenario (e.g. Kiev-Maidan, Cairo-Tahir Square) which is predicated on triggering confrontation and urban violence.

Is the Disrupt Campaign committed to deliberately staging violence on January 20?

“The idea is to shut down access to the parade as much as possible and slowing it down to a crawl,” said DisruptJ20 organizer Legba Carrefour. “Then there’s the broader goal of shutting down the entire city around it and creating a sense of paralysis that creates a headline that says, ‘Trump’s inauguration creates chaos.’” (NBC, January 17, 2017)

The organizers of the engineered protest movement are funded by powerful corporate interests, they are supported by US intelligence. The objective is not to undermine the racist right wing agenda of Donald Trump as conveyed in the video below. Quite the opposite.

The same color revolution OTPOR style logo:

“Color Revolution” Against Donald Trump

Trump vs CIA --- DJT Forced to Finish the Fight Started by JFK Politics

This is wishful thinking. The reality is starkly different.

State of the Nation

John F. Kennedy was entirely right about the CIA … and that was back in 1961.  Imagine how much worse the global CIA-run tyranny is in 2017, 56 years later.  In addition to brutally murdering the American president, how many other heads of state have been summarily assassinated by the Central Intelligence Agency?

CIA & Company: The Real Plotters Behind JFK’s Assassination

Not only did the C.I.A. coordinate every aspect of the assassination of President Kennedy, they have continued to oversee a highly complex and effective cover-up since November 22, 1963.

JFK Assassination: Classic CIA EXECUTION Plan …
… and COVERUP

The C.I.A. painstakingly set up Lee Harvey Oswald as a patsy because he had warned JFK and his brother of a previous assassination plot in Chicago earlier that same month.

Lee Harvey Oswald: Framed By The CIA Because He Infiltrated Their Assassination Conspiracy

Not only did the C.I.A. frame Lee Harvey Oswald because he was actually working for Attorney General Bobby Kennedy, they also killed John F. Kennedy, Jr. to maintain the ongoing cover-up … after they killed Robert F. Kennedy on June 5, 1968.

Did the CIA kill Bobby Kennedy?

It’s true that JFK, Jr. was very close to outing George H.W. Bush as the CIA’s point man in Dallas on the day of President Kennedy’s Assassination.  He even named his iconic magazine — GEORGE — after the elder Bush assassin.

JFK Jr. Told The World Who Murdered His Father – But Nobody Was Paying Attention

Now the world knows why President Kennedy was so determined to “splinter the CIA in a thousand pieces” as his own son would eventually be murdered by the same rogue elements in The Company, as would his brother be conspiratorially killed by them. 

See also


NEWS CONTENTS

Old News ;-)

[Aug 23, 2017] How the Brass Talked Another President Into a Losing Strategy The American Conservative

Notable quotes:
"... The Military Times ..."
"... Little America: The War Within the War for Afghanistan ..."
"... The American Conservative ..."
"... Wall Street Journal ..."
Aug 23, 2017 | www.theamericanconservative.com
How the Brass Talked Another President Into a Losing Strategy Despite tough talk, Trump approach on Afghanistan is no different than 2009. By Mark Perry August 22, 2017

President Donald Trump walks with U.S. Army Maj. Gen. Michael Howard, commander of Joint Force Headquarters, at Arlington National Cemetery, May 29, 2017. Behind them are Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis and U.S. Marine Gen. Joseph Dunford, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. (Flickr/CreativeCommons/DOD photo by U.S. Air Force Tech. Sgt. Brigitte N. Brantley)

The American people don't like long wars with uncertain outcomes!and never have. That was true in 1953, when the U.S. accepted a stalemate and armistice with the Chinese-backed North Koreans, and it was true again in 1975, when the U.S. suffered an ignominious defeat and 58,000 dead at the hands of pajama-clad guerrillas and the North Vietnamese army. "Never fight a land war in Asia," General Douglas MacArthur famously said, and for good reason: in both Korea and Vietnam, the enemy could be endlessly supplied and reinforced.

The solution, in both cases, was to either widen the war or leave. In Korea, MacArthur proposed expanding the war by taking on Chinese military sanctuaries in China (which got him fired), while in Vietnam, Richard Nixon ordered the invasion of Cambodia and mined North Vietnam's harbors, an expansion of the war that sparked a genocide and merely postponed the inevitable. America's adventures in Iraq and Afghanistan have been as unsatisfying. A troop surge retrieved America's position in Iraq, though most military officers now view Baghdad as "a suburb of Tehran" (as a currently serving Army officer phrased it), while the U.S. has spent over $800 billion on a Kabul government whose writ extends to sixty percent of the country!or less.

Given this, it's not surprising that opinion surveys showed that the majority of the U.S. military supported Donald Trump in the last election; Trump promised a rethink of America's Iraq and Afghanistan's adventures, while Clinton was derided as an interventionist, or in Pentagon parlance, "cruise missile liberal." Trump had the edge over his opponent among both military voters and veterans, especially when it came to ISIS: "I would bomb the shit out of them" he said, a statement translated in the military community as "I would bomb the shit out of them!and get out." A headline in The Military Times two months before the election said it all: "After 15 years of war, America's military has about had it with 'nation building.'"

As it turned out, the military weren't the only ones who'd "had it with nation building"!so too did Donald Trump. Back in January 2013, two years before he was a candidate for president, Trump made it clear what he would do if he ever occupied the White House. "Let's get out of Afghanistan," he tweeted. "Our troops are being killed by the Afghanis we train and we waste billions there. Nonsense! Rebuild the USA." Three days later, Trump was even more outspoken, explicitly endorsing Barack Obama's Afghanistan strategy!which amounted to a troops surge, followed by a troop drawdown. "I agree with Pres. Obama on Afghanistan," he wrote. "We should have a speedy withdrawal. Why should we keep wasting our money – rebuild the U.S.!"

Now, after addressing the American people Monday on his "new strategy in South Asia" (a purposeful trope used to signal his intention to shape a broader, regional policy), Trump appears to have embraced the military's anti-nation building sentiments, while adopting a policy of "winning," though without saying exactly how that would happen. The policy! which also includes not saying how many troops "winning" will take, or setting a timetable for victory!includes a pledge of help from America's allies, and a new focus on Pakistan. Trump was also intent to signal that his new strategy (the war will be left in the hands of warfighters, he announced, and not "micro-managed from Washington") is much different than the one adopted by his predecessors who, as he all but said, got it wrong.

In fact, though he would almost certainly deny it, what Trump has proposed is a reprise of what Barack Obama did in January of 2009.

Back then, one of Obama's first decisions on Afghanistan was to assign Bruce Riedel, a 30-year CIA veteran and South Asia expert, to study the conflict and come up with ways to fight it. The following March, on Air Force One, Riedel briefed Obama on his conclusions. Afghanistan would be a big problem for a long time, he said, but the situation in the country was getting worse. The Kabul government was corrupt, its leaders were out-of-touch with the Afghan people and the Taliban and al-Qaeda were gaining strength. But even with that, Riedel added, the real problem wasn't really Afghanistan, it was Pakistan. "That's the real challenge," Riedel said.

Obama agreed with Riedel's sobering assessment and, on March 27, 2009, he announced his decision to the American people. "The future of Afghanistan is inextricably linked to the future of its neighbor Pakistan," Obama said in a nationally televised address. "In the nearly eight years since 9/11, al-Qaeda and its extremist allies have moved across the border to the remote areas of the Pakistani frontier." Put more simply (though Obama did not mention it), the same problem that the U.S. had faced in Korea, and again in Vietnam and Iraq!its failure to destroy the sanctuaries where its enemies could be reinforced and resupplied!it was now facing in Afghanistan. To deal with that problem, Obama appointed super-diplomat Richard Holbrooke to serve as a special envoy to the region (and to work with Centcom commander David Petraeus "to integrate our civilian and military efforts"), launched a drone war against Taliban and al-Qaeda bases in Pakistan, urged Congress to pass a $1.5 billion aid package to Pakistan that would make American strikes more palatable and then, the following May, replaced General David McKiernan, the U.S. commander in Afghanistan, with Stanley McChrystal.

It didn't work.

In 2012, reporter and author Rajiv Chandrasekaran (whose book Little America: The War Within the War for Afghanistan remains the authoritative source on the Obama plan) concluded that while the Taliban was "pushed out of large stretches of southern Afghanistan," and the "influx of U.S. resources accelerated the development of the Afghan security forces" the surge did not achieve its objectives . In effect, the Obama administration threw good money after bad: Afghan president Hamid Karzai never bought into the strategy, the Pakistanis failed to "meaningfully pursue" the Taliban and the Afghan army hung back!allowing the U.S. to do the fighting. What the U.S. should have done, Chandrasekaran wrote, was "go long." Afghanistan is not a sprint, he concluded, but a marathon!and America "got winded too quickly."

James Mattis and H.R. McMaster have digested these lessons, a senior Pentagon official told me just hours before Trump's national address, and "have spent the last weeks trying to convince the president that the 'three yards and a cloud of dust' approach," as he termed it, will work. Roughly translated, what that means is that in adopting a more modest increase in American troops, as McMaster and Mattis told Trump, the president would be signaling that while the U.S. was willing to help the Afghan government fight the Taliban, the numbers would not be significant enough to defeat them!that would have to be done by the Afghan Army. In truth, the McMaster-Mattis approach (what one senior Pentagon officer described as "doubling down on a war that is going nowhere") has some support in the U.S. diplomatic community, and particularly among those civilians who have spent years working in the country.

Among these is David Sedney, a senior associate at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, who is the former acting president of the American University of Afghanistan and served as deputy assistant secretary of defense for Afghanistan, Pakistan and Central Asia. For Sedney, it's the uncertainty of the American commitment that has been the problem. "We've been ambivalent about Afghanistan for the last fifteen years," he told The American Conservative , "and this has given hope to the Taliban and Pakistan. The message that they've taken is that all they need do is wait the U.S. out. Bush focused on Iraq and Obama put in troops caps." One of the keys, Sedney goes on to say, is that the U.S. "has failed to strengthen the Afghan state in fundamental ways, but the most important is to make a commitment and keep it. That's the key."

Sedney also has little use for the views retailed inside the White House by outside experts, like Frontier Services Group president Eric Prince, who advised the administration (in a Wall Street Journal op-ed back in May, and then in a personal meeting with McMaster) to increase the number of contractors in the country, thereby allowing for a drawdown in U.S. troops while also, as Prince argued, saving the U.S. money. While some Pentagon officials speculated as late as last week that secretary Mattis "was not as opposed to the Prince's ideas as was originally thought," more recent reports say that the idea "was dead on arrival in the Pentagon, almost from the minute it was mentioned." Sedney dismisses the idea out of hand, citing his experience with his students in Kabul. "My students don't want an American proconsul," he says, "they want an Afghan government that knows how to do the job, and that should be our focus."

But while Trump has apparently nixed Prince's contractor idea (and it went unmentioned in his speech), Pentagon officials tell The American Conservative that he has quietly bought into claims that the U.S. can help revive the Afghan economy by exploiting the nation's mineral resources. While Trump did not mention the program in his speech, and the claim remains debated in the White House, the president (a senior Pentagon civilian told TAC) "is intent to explore ways for this war to pay for itself"!which apparently includes a review of whether Afghanistan's resources can be exploited sufficiently to put the Afghan government on a sound footing. Will it work?

"This was a good idea back in 2009," one former Pentagon official says, "but it's not going to work now." A geologic survey conducted a decade ago shows that Afghanistan is rich in deposits of gold, silver, and platinum, as well as large quantities of uranium, zinc, bauxite, coal, natural gas and copper! a mother lode of natural resources that could proved Kabul with a badly needed budgetary windfall .

"It's a pig in a poke," a former Pentagon official who worked in Afghanistan on identifying the deposits told The American Conservative , "don't believe a word of it." The archaic "pig in a poke" phrase, which denotes that a buyer should beware of buying a pig that couldn't be seen (because it was in a "poke," or bag), denotes the common belief that while Afghanistan may contain the mineral deposits numerous mining surveys have identified, they remain elusive. Then too, as the former Pentagon official with whom we spoke says, the idea that American companies will realize a windfall on the mineral scheme (to which, as a businessman, Trump is particularly attracted), is simply not in reach.

"American companies no longer do the kind of mining that it would take," this former Pentagon official says, "security is bad, and commodity prices have collapsed. Why would companies invest in mineral deposits in Afghanistan when they won't make the same investments in Australia." Which is to simply say that the Afghanistan problem is now, under Trump, what it was under George W. Bush and Barack Obama!an intransigent challenge whose resolution is dependent on fighting and winning a war against an enemy who can fight, retreat, resupply and reinforce and fight again. The key to that victory is now what it has always been: Pakistan. Trump, and McMaster and Mattis, realize this of course, which is why tonight the president focused on providing a strategy for "South Asia"!a phrase the defense secretary, in particular, has used over the last weeks.

"I have hope for Afghanistan," CSIS's Sedney says. "The Afghan military is fighting better than ever before. When I went to Kabul in 2002, Kabul looked like Dresden, but now it's a vibrant city. Yes, the Taliban can kill people, but most Afghanis are moving ahead with their lives in spite of this. The problem is that, as we've seen over the last decade, a small minority can keep the country destabilized. That's what we have to stop. We have to come up with a way of stopping that."

In the wake of Trump's address, credit for its opening paean was given to new White House chief of staff John Kelly, the retired Marine Corps general who, TAC was told, insisted that Trump use the speech to walk back the controversy of his remarks on Charlottesville!a suggestion that both McMaster and Mattis readily agreed to when Trump's national security team met on Friday at Camp David. In the end, however, it was McMaster and Mattis who had the greatest influence on Trump's thinking. "There was all this speculation that maybe, just maybe, the president would somehow come around to getting out," the senior Pentagon civilian with whom we spoke said, "but that was never going to happen. Jim Mattis wouldn't let it happen. You can see his fingerprints all over this."

Another Pentagon observer had a much different take. "This is Joe Biden's plan, all the way," he said, referring to the then-Vice President's recommendation to Obama back in 2009. "Biden said that we should increase counterterrorism operations, draw down U.S. forces in the provinces, increase pressure on Pakistan and make a deal with India. Obama said 'no' to the idea, but you can bet Mattis was listening. This is his plan all the way."

Almost everyone at the Pentagon agrees, though key senior military officers who have been privy to James Mattis's thinking over the last weeks (but who remain unconvinced by it) provide a cautionary, and nearly fatalistic, note. "This Trump plan, at least so far as I understand it, sounds a lot like the kind of plan we've come up with again and again since the end of World War Two," a senior Pentagon officer says. "We're going to surge troops, reform the government we support and put pressure on our allies. In this building [the Pentagon] there's a hell of a lot of skepticism. And that's because we all know what this new strategy really means – and what it means that the only way we can get out of Afghanistan is to get further in. You know, it seems to me that if there's one thing we've learned, it's that that doesn't work."

Mark Perry is a foreign policy analyst and the author of The Most Dangerous Man in America: The Making of Douglas MacArthur . His next book, The Pentagon's Wars , will be released in October. He tweets @markperrydc

[Aug 22, 2017] Pat Buchanan

Buchanan demonstrates very superficial understanding of the result of the USSR collapse. Afghan war was just one contributing factor. It was never the primary reason. Soviet people understood pretty well that they actually faced the USA in Afghan war. Or more correctly the combination of the USA has technological superiority, Saudi money and political Islam. The fact that the USA supplied Stingers portable anti-aircraft rocket launchers. Which later will shoot down some US helicopters. The fact the the USA fe-factor put political Islam on front burner later will bite the USA several times.
Also Buchanan does not understand the role of neoliberal revolution (or coup d'état if you wish, called quite coup) of 80th in the current US troubles. Trump was the first ever presidential candidate, who companied and managed to win the elections on promises to tame neoliberal globalization. The fact that he was crushed in six month of so is not surprising, as he faced very well organize Trotskyite militants (aka deep state) - neoliberalism is actually Trotskyism for rish. Russiagate witch hunt with its Special Prosecutor is a replica of Stalin processes. As Marx used to say history repeats, first as tragedy, second as farce.
"I have not become the King's First Minister in order to preside over the liquidation of the British Empire," said Winston Churchill. and this is the essence of Trump betrual of his election promises.
Notable quotes:
"... Is it now the turn of the Americans? Persuaded by his generals -- Mattis at Defense, McMasters on the National Security Council, Kelly as chief of staff -- President Trump is sending some 4,000 more U.S. troops to Afghanistan to augment the 8,500 already there. Like Presidents Obama and Bush, he does not intend to preside over a U.S. defeat in its longest war. Nor do his generals. Yet how can we defeat the Taliban with 13,000 troops when we failed to do so with the 100,000 Obama sent? The new troops are to train the Afghan army to take over the war, to continue eradicating the terrorist elements like ISIS, and to prevent Kabul and other cities from falling to a Taliban now dominant in 40 percent of the country. ..."
"... Writes Bob Merry in the fall issue of The National interest: "War between Russia and the West seems nearly inevitable. No self-respecting nation facing inexorable encirclement by an alliance of hostile neighbors can allow such pressures and forces to continue indefinitely. Eventually (Russia) must protect its interests through military action." ..."
"... Trump himself seems hell-bent on tearing up the nuclear deal with Iran. This would lead inexorably to a U.S. ultimatum, where Iran would be expected to back down or face a war that would set the Persian Gulf ablaze. ..."
"... Yet the country did not vote for confrontation or war. ..."
"... America voted for Trump's promise to improve ties with Russia, to make Europe shoulder more of the cost of its defense, to annihilate ISIS and extricate us from Mideast wars, to stay out of future wars. ..."
"... This agenda did exist and Trump used it to get elected. Once he pulled off that trick he tried to get together again (unsuccessfully) with his New York Plutocrat friends. It's that New York social background. It's always been difficult to see Trump fit together economically or socially with the America that elected him, and after he got elected he quickly weakened his ties with Middle America. So why should he complain about Fake News since he got elected on a Fake Agenda? ..."
"... Trump does not even remember what he was elected to do. A man who was determined to drain the swamp is deep, up to his neck, in that swamp. The neocons and the never-Trumpers are the main decision makers in the Trump administration. All the loyal supporters have been chased out of the Trump's inner circle. A man who built his empire with his brain and shrewdness can't seem to handle the Presidency. He is trying to appease the very same people who opposed him in the election. ..."
"... For a smart businessman, Donald Trump can't seem to make any friends. There is a very simple solution to these wars of choice. Mr. Trump swallow your pride and bring the boys home. You will save American lives and will also earn the gratitude of the families of these soldiers. You may even bring peace to many countries around the world and people who have been displaced by these wars can return home. You may even solve the refugee problem in the process. You might even save your presidency. Give peace a chance. ..."
"... I think The Donald offered the lame excuse that things looks much different when you're in the oval office vs. the campaign trail. That won't be any consolation to people who voted for him in the hopes that their family members in the military would be coming home soon. And it won't be any consolation to some members of his base. ..."
"... Trump isn't going to keep his campaign promises. ..."
"... Continuing to maintain forces in South Korea continues to contribute to our bankruptcy. ..."
"... Now that the generals have gone wild under Trump we may as well admit that we're ruled by a military junta. We'll let them make all the decisions since they're so brilliant while Trump tweets and holds stupid rallies trying to convince people that he hasn't reneged on any campaign promises. ..."
Aug 22, 2017 | www.unz.com

12 Comments

"I have not become the King's First Minister in order to preside over the liquidation of the British Empire," said Winston Churchill to cheers at the Lord Mayor's luncheon in London in November 1942. True to his word, the great man did not begin the liquidation. When his countrymen threw him out in July 1945, that role fell to Clement Attlee, who began the liquidation. Churchill, during his second premiership from 1951-1955, would continue the process, as would his successor, Harold Macmillan, until the greatest empire the world had ever seen had vanished.

While its demise was inevitable, the death of the empire was hastened and made mo re humiliating by the wars into which Churchill had helped to plunge Britain, wars that bled and bankrupted his nation. At Yalta in 1945, Stalin and FDR treated the old imperialist with something approaching bemused contempt. War is the health of the state, but the death of empires. The German, Austro-Hungarian, Russian and Ottoman empires all fell in World War I. World War II ended the Japanese and Italian empires -- with the British and French following soon after. The Soviet Empire collapsed in 1989. Afghanistan delivered the coup de grace.

Is it now the turn of the Americans? Persuaded by his generals -- Mattis at Defense, McMasters on the National Security Council, Kelly as chief of staff -- President Trump is sending some 4,000 more U.S. troops to Afghanistan to augment the 8,500 already there. Like Presidents Obama and Bush, he does not intend to preside over a U.S. defeat in its longest war. Nor do his generals. Yet how can we defeat the Taliban with 13,000 troops when we failed to do so with the 100,000 Obama sent? The new troops are to train the Afghan army to take over the war, to continue eradicating the terrorist elements like ISIS, and to prevent Kabul and other cities from falling to a Taliban now dominant in 40 percent of the country.

Yet what did the great general, whom Trump so admires, Douglas MacArthur, say of such a strategy? "War's very object is victory, not prolonged indecision." Is not "prolonged indecision" what the Trump strategy promises? Is not "prolonged indecision" what the war policies of Obama and Bush produced in the last 17 years? Understandably, Americans feel they cannot walk away from this war. For there is the certainty as to what will follow when we leave.

When the British left Delhi in 1947, millions of former subjects died during the partition of the territory into Pakistan and India and the mutual slaughter of Muslims and Hindus. When the French departed Algeria in 1962, the "Harkis" they left behind paid the price of being loyal to the Mother Country. When we abandoned our allies in South Vietnam, the result was mass murder in the streets, concentration camps and hundreds of thousands of boat people in the South China Sea, a final resting place for many. In Cambodia, it was a holocaust.

Trump, however, was elected to end America's involvement in Middle East wars. And if he has been persuaded that he simply cannot liquidate these wars -- Libya, Syria, Iraq, Yemen, Afghanistan -- he will likely end up sacrificing his presidency, trying to rescue the failures of those who worked hardest to keep him out of the White House.

Consider the wars, active and potential, Trump faces.

Writes Bob Merry in the fall issue of The National interest: "War between Russia and the West seems nearly inevitable. No self-respecting nation facing inexorable encirclement by an alliance of hostile neighbors can allow such pressures and forces to continue indefinitely. Eventually (Russia) must protect its interests through military action."

If Pyongyang tests another atom bomb or ICBM, some national security aides to Trump are not ruling out preventive war.

Trump himself seems hell-bent on tearing up the nuclear deal with Iran. This would lead inexorably to a U.S. ultimatum, where Iran would be expected to back down or face a war that would set the Persian Gulf ablaze.

Yet the country did not vote for confrontation or war.

America voted for Trump's promise to improve ties with Russia, to make Europe shoulder more of the cost of its defense, to annihilate ISIS and extricate us from Mideast wars, to stay out of future wars.

America voted for economic nationalism and an end to the mammoth trade deficits with the NAFTA nations, EU, Japan and China. America voted to halt the invasion across our Southern border and to reduce legal immigration to

Grandpa Charlie > , August 22, 2017 at 6:33 am GMT

I think that the case of Korea is very different from all the others, but generally I agree with Mr. Buchanan to the extent that I say: Pat Buchanan for President

Miro23 > , August 22, 2017 at 6:44 am GMT

Trump's populist-nationalist and America First agenda,

This agenda did exist and Trump used it to get elected. Once he pulled off that trick he tried to get together again (unsuccessfully) with his New York Plutocrat friends. It's that New York social background. It's always been difficult to see Trump fit together economically or socially with the America that elected him, and after he got elected he quickly weakened his ties with Middle America. So why should he complain about Fake News since he got elected on a Fake Agenda?

MEexpert > , August 22, 2017 at 7:12 am GMT

Those who don't learn from history are doomed to repeat it. This quote is so well-known that almost everyone knows it, except perhaps the politicians and the generals. Afghanistan has been called the deathbed of empires. The two recent empires to go down are the British and the Soviet. For almost 200 years the British tried to tame the Afghan tribes but couldn't. The devastation they caused did not deter the natives. It is all there in the history books for everyone to read. The Soviet empire didn't even last ten years. It cut its losses and ran.

The lack of teaching of history and geography in American schools is quite evident when one looks at the performance of American forces in Afghanistan after 17 years. Add the arrogance of the Presidents and the generals to this lack of knowledge and one can understand the disasterous results of the Afghan war. One other subject that is missing from the modern presidency is diplomacy. War over diplomacy seems to be the order of the day.

Trump, however, was elected to end America's involvement in Middle East wars. And if he has been persuaded that he simply cannot liquidate these wars -- Libya, Syria, Iraq, Yemen, Afghanistan -- he will likely end up sacrificing his presidency, trying to rescue the failures of those who worked hardest to keep him out of the White House.

Trump does not even remember what he was elected to do. A man who was determined to drain the swamp is deep, up to his neck, in that swamp. The neocons and the never-Trumpers are the main decision makers in the Trump administration. All the loyal supporters have been chased out of the Trump's inner circle. A man who built his empire with his brain and shrewdness can't seem to handle the Presidency. He is trying to appease the very same people who opposed him in the election.

Trump himself seems hell-bent on tearing up the nuclear deal with Iran. This would lead inexorably to a U.S. ultimatum, where Iran would be expected to back down or face a war that would set the Persian Gulf ablaze.

It is never going to happen. Not only the Middle East would be set ablaze, but America will lose its European allies as well. The relations with Russia are already confrontational and heading fast towards an ultimate war. European allies are also confused about the US foreign policy or lack thereof. Trade war is brewing with China. The only country which is happy with this chaos is Israel.

For a smart businessman, Donald Trump can't seem to make any friends. There is a very simple solution to these wars of choice. Mr. Trump swallow your pride and bring the boys home. You will save American lives and will also earn the gratitude of the families of these soldiers. You may even bring peace to many countries around the world and people who have been displaced by these wars can return home. You may even solve the refugee problem in the process. You might even save your presidency. Give peace a chance.

Renoman > , August 22, 2017 at 8:51 am GMT

No one has ever been able to conquer Afghanistan why would America think it can? Likely just throwing a bone to the neocons. As for Iran, Trump has been beating his chest all over the World and doing nothing, again with the Neocon feeding, I don't think he has any intention of getting into anything larger than a skirmish with anyone, he's a lot smarter than he looks --

syd.bgd > , August 22, 2017 at 9:10 am GMT

Well while Mr. Buchanan is not an expert in Balkans history, or politics, as I've argued here, he is excellent in American history and politics. An article somewhat short, because he is not connecting his sharp analysis to ongoing First Amendment disaster. It comes along, obviously, but still an excellent piece.

To be copied and saved in my personal archives, anyway. I do not believe that even this site will last long. Greetings from Serbia, suicidal country controlled from that feudal fortress (US Embassy) where our Scott-Pasha resides.

Chris Dakota > , August 22, 2017 at 11:21 am GMT

It was the eclipse that swept across America to change it forever. We now know we are on our own, there is no political solution for this war. The eclipse marks the end of a war, our war, we lost. Trump extends Afghan swamp war on the very day. Eclipse was conjunct Trumps Mars, he was castrated. Doesn't mean we won't win, but it won't be via the rigged ballot box and the DC swamp.

KenH > , August 22, 2017 at 11:47 am GMT

I think The Donald offered the lame excuse that things looks much different when you're in the oval office vs. the campaign trail. That won't be any consolation to people who voted for him in the hopes that their family members in the military would be coming home soon. And it won't be any consolation to some members of his base.

Now that the generals have gone wild under Trump we may as well admit that we're ruled by a military junta. We'll let them make all the decisions since they're so brilliant while Trump tweets and holds stupid rallies trying to convince people that he hasn't reneged on any campaign promises.

But if it prevents tens of thousands of knuckle dragging Afghans steeped in a culture of violence, pedophilia and pederasty from entering America as refugees then I guess there's a silver lining.

MEH 0910 > , August 22, 2017 at 1:42 pm GMT

https://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2017/08/full-transcript-donald-trump-announces-his-afghanistan-policy/537552/

My original instinct was to pull out, and historically, I like following my instincts. But all my life I've heard that decisions are much different when you sit behind the desk in the Oval Office.

Trump isn't going to keep his campaign promises. That means he's not going to build a beautiful wall on our southern border.

Liberty Mike > , August 22, 2017 at 2:31 pm GMT

@Grandpa Charlie What is different about "the case of Korea"?

Continuing to maintain forces in South Korea continues to contribute to our bankruptcy.

Liberty Mike > , August 22, 2017 at 2:34 pm GMT

@KenH I think The Donald offered the lame excuse that things looks much different when you're in the oval office vs. the campaign trail. That won't be any consolation to people who voted for him in the hopes that their family members in the military would be coming home soon. And it won't be any consolation to some members of his base.

Now that the generals have gone wild under Trump we may as well admit that we're ruled by a military junta. We'll let them make all the decisions since they're so brilliant while Trump tweets and holds stupid rallies trying to convince people that he hasn't reneged on any campaign promises.

... ... ..

[Aug 22, 2017] Interactive Timeline Everything We Know About Russia and President Trump by Steven Harper

Hatchet job. But pretty well designed hatchet job. Sophisticated set of lies mixed with truth to facilitate the witch hunt.
Aug 21, 2017 | billmoyers.com

Explore our updated, comprehensive Trump-Russia Timeline ! or select one of the central players in the Trump-Russia saga to see what we know about them.

... ... ...

Steven Harper blogs at The Belly of the Beast , is an adjunct professor at Northwestern University, and contributes regularly to The American Lawyer. He is the author of several books, including The Lawyer Bubble ! A Profession in Crisis and Crossing Hoffa ! A Teamster's Story (a Chicago Tribune "Best Book of the Year"). Follow him on Twitter: @StevenJHarper1 .

[Aug 22, 2017] Russia-gate's Evidentiary Void by Robert Parry

Notable quotes:
"... Exclusive: A cyber-warfare expert sees no technical evidence linking Russia to the Democratic email releases, but The New York Times presses ahead with a new hope that Ukraine can fill the void, reports Robert Parry. ..."
"... "There is not now and never has been a single piece of technical evidence produced that connects the malware used in the DNC attack to the GRU, FSB or any agency of the Russian government," Carr said. ..."
"... Yet, the reliance on Ukraine to provide evidence against Russia defies any objective investigative standards. The Ukrainian government is fiercely anti-Russian and views itself as engaged in an "information war" with Putin and his government. ..."
"... Meanwhile, the Times offered its readers almost no cautionary advice that – in the case of Russia-gate – Ukraine would have every motive to send U.S. investigators in directions harmful to Russia, much as happened with the MH-17 investigation. ..."
"... America's Stolen Narrative, ..."
"... At this point, Carr is right: There is NO publicly available, non-circumstantial, non-spoofable evidence that a DNC hack even occurred, let alone that any hack that might have been done was done by Russians at all, let alone the Russian government. And all of the alleged US intelligence "assessments" have provided NO additional evidence. ..."
Aug 18, 2017 | consortiumnews.com

Exclusive: A cyber-warfare expert sees no technical evidence linking Russia to the Democratic email releases, but The New York Times presses ahead with a new hope that Ukraine can fill the void, reports Robert Parry.

The New York Times' unrelenting anti-Russia bias would be almost comical if the possible outcome were not a nuclear conflagration and maybe the end of life on planet Earth.

A classic example of the Times' one-sided coverage was a front-page article on Thursday expressing the wistful hope that a Ukrainian hacker whose malware was linked to the release of Democratic National Committee (DNC) emails in 2016 could somehow "blow the whistle on Russian hacking."

Though full of airy suspicions and often reading like a conspiracy theory, the article by Andrew E. Kramer and Andrew Higgins contained one important admission (buried deep inside the "jump" on page A8 in my print edition), a startling revelation especially for those Americans who have accepted the Russia-did-it groupthink as an established fact.

The article quoted Jeffrey Carr, the author of a book on cyber-warfare, referring to a different reality: that the Russia-gate "certainties" blaming the DNC "hack" on Russia's GRU military intelligence service or Russia's FSB security agency lack a solid evidentiary foundation.

"There is not now and never has been a single piece of technical evidence produced that connects the malware used in the DNC attack to the GRU, FSB or any agency of the Russian government," Carr said.

Yet, before that remarkable admission had a chance to sink into the brains of Times' readers whose thinking has been fattened up on a steady diet of treating the "Russian hack" as flat fact, Times' editors quickly added that "United States intelligence agencies, however, have been unequivocal in pointing a finger at Russia."

The Times' rebuke toward any doubts about Russia-gate was inserted after Carr's remark although the Times had already declared several times on page 1 that there was really no doubt about Russia's guilt.

"American intelligence agencies have determined Russian hackers were behind the electronic break-in of the Democratic national Committee," the Times reported, followed by the assertion that the hacker's "malware apparently did" get used by Moscow and then another reminder that "Washington is convinced [that the hacking operation] was orchestrated by Moscow."

By repeating the same point on the inside page, the Times editors seemed to be saying that any deviant views on this subject must be slapped down promptly and decisively.

A Flimsy Assessment

But that gets us back to the problem with the Jan. 6 "Intelligence Community Assessment," which -- contrary to repeated Times' claims -- was not the "consensus" view of all 17 U.S. intelligence agencies, but rather the work of a small group of "hand-picked" analysts from three agencies: the Central Intelligence Agency, Federal Bureau of Investigation and National Security Agency. And, they operated under the watchful eye of President Obama's political appointees, CIA Director John Brennan and Director of National Intelligence James Clapper, who was the one who called them "hand-picked."

Those analysts presented no real evidence to support their assessment, which they acknowledged was not a determination of fact, but rather what amounted to their best guess based on what they perceived to be Russian motives and capabilities.

The Jan. 6 assessment admitted as much, saying its "judgments are not intended to imply that we have proof that shows something to be a fact. Assessments are based on collected information, which is often incomplete or fragmentary, as well as logic, argumentation, and precedents."

Much of the unclassified version of the report lambasted Russia's international TV network RT for such offenses as hosting a 2012 presidential debate for third-party candidates excluded from the Republican-Democratic debate, covering the Occupy Wall Street protests, and reporting on dangers from "fracking." The assessment described those editorial decisions as assaults on American democracy.

But rather than acknowledge the thinness of the Jan. 6 report, the Times – like other mainstream news outlets – treated it as gospel and pretended that it represented a "consensus" of all 17 intelligence agencies even though it clearly never did. (Belatedly, the Times slipped in a correction to that falsehood in one article although continuing to use similar language in subsequent stories so an unsuspecting Times reader would not be aware of how shaky the Russia-gate foundation is.)

Russian President Vladimir Putin and WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange have denied repeatedly that the Russian government was the source of the two batches of Democratic emails released via WikiLeaks in 2016, a point that the Times also frequently fails to acknowledge. (This is not to say that Putin and Assange are telling the truth, but it is a journalistic principle to include relevant denials from parties facing accusations.)

Conspiracy Mongering

The rest of Thursday's Times article veered from the incomprehensible to the bizarre, as the Times reported that the hacker, known only as "Profexer," is cooperating with F.B.I. agents inside Ukraine. President Barack Obama and President Petro Poroshenko of Ukraine talk after statements to the press following their bilateral meeting at the Warsaw Marriott Hotel in Warsaw, Poland, June 4, 2014. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

Yet, the reliance on Ukraine to provide evidence against Russia defies any objective investigative standards. The Ukrainian government is fiercely anti-Russian and views itself as engaged in an "information war" with Putin and his government.

Ukraine's SBU security service also has been implicated in possible torture , according to United Nations investigators who were denied access to Ukrainian government detention facilities housing ethnic Russian Ukrainians who resisted the violent coup in February 2014, which was spearheaded by neo-Nazis and other extreme nationalists and overthrew elected President Viktor Yanukovych.

The SBU also has been the driving force behind the supposedly "Dutch-led" investigation into the July 17, 2014 shooting down of Malaysia Airlines Flight 17. That inquiry has ignored evidence that a rogue Ukrainian force may have been responsible – not even addressing a Dutch/NATO intelligence report stating that all anti-aircraft missile batteries in eastern Ukraine on that day were under the control of the Ukrainian military – and instead tried to pin the atrocity on Russia , albeit with no suspects yet charged.

In Thursday's article, the Times unintentionally reveals how fuzzy the case against "Fancy Bear" and "Cozy Bear" – the two alleged Russian government hacking operations – is.

The Times reports: "Rather than training, arming and deploying hackers to carry out a specific mission like just another military unit, Fancy Bear and its twin Cozy Bear have operated more as centers for organization and financing; much of the hard work like coding is outsourced to private and often crime-tainted vendors."

Further, under the dramatic subhead – "A Bear's Lair" – the Times reported that no such lair may exist: "Tracking the bear to its lair has so far proved impossible, not least because many experts believe that no such single place exists."

Lacking Witnesses

The Times' article also noted the "absence of reliable witnesses" to resolve the mystery – so to the rescue came the "reliable" regime in Kiev, or as the Times wrote: "emerging from Ukraine is a sharper picture of what the United States believes is a Russian government hacking group."

The Times then cited various cases of exposed Ukrainian government emails, again blaming the Russians albeit without any real evidence.

The Times suggested some connection between the alleged Russian hackers and a mistaken report on Russia's Channel 1 about a Ukrainian election, which the Times claimed "inadvertently implicated the government authorities in Moscow."

The Times' "proof" in this case was that some hacker dummied a phony Internet page to look like an official Ukrainian election graphic showing a victory by ultra-right candidate, Dmytro Yarosh, when in fact Yarosh polled less than 1 percent. The hacker supposedly sent this "spoof" graphic to Channel 1, which used it.

But such an embarrassing error, which would have no effect on the actual election results, suggests an effort to discredit Channel 1 rather than evidence of a cooperative relationship between the mysterious hacker and the Russian station. The Times, however, made this example a cornerstone in its case against the Russians.

Meanwhile, the Times offered its readers almost no cautionary advice that – in the case of Russia-gate – Ukraine would have every motive to send U.S. investigators in directions harmful to Russia, much as happened with the MH-17 investigation.

So, we can expect that whatever "evidence" Ukraine "uncovers" will be accepted as gospel truth by the Times and much of the U.S. government – and anyone who dares ask inconvenient questions about its reliability will be deemed a "Kremlin stooge" spreading "Russian propaganda."

Investigative reporter Robert Parry broke many of the Iran-Contra stories for The Associated Press and Newsweek in the 1980s. You can buy his latest book, America's Stolen Narrative, either in print here or as an e-book (from Amazon and barnesandnoble.com ).

Litchfield , August 18, 2017 at 3:39 pm

Can the United States, its mainstream media, and its intelligence services sink any deeper into the status of laughable but also malicious clowns? Yes. They reach new lows with practically every edition of the NYT -- The only group maintaining any respectability within these entities is the VIPS group.

Pathetic. Laughingstock of the world. But don't kick sand in these bullies' faces. They may nuke you --

Anna , August 18, 2017 at 5:32 pm

You don't understand. The Times Co. Chairman Arthur O. Sulzberger Jr., the publisher of the newspaper, wants the Golan Heights for his pet project by any means and he is beyond himself that the bad, bad Russians stopped the slaughter of civilians in Syria and thus stopped the dissolution of Syria.

The Chairman Arthur O. Sulzberger Jr. hates, hates the idea of sovereign Syria. He wants Syria to become another Libya. Period.

And he wants to see Iran obliterated (some old grievances against the noble ancient civilization that used to provide the best living place for Jews). And then, the Chairman Arthur O. Sulzberger Jr. wants to see profits, even if his profitable fake-news business could lead to a nuclear conflict with Russain Federation. Like other super-wealthy imbeciles, the Chairman Arthur O. Sulzberger Jr. is accustomed to a very special order when other people are always ready to clean his mess. He is not aware that the Mess, which he is so eagerly inviting, could end up his comfortable life and make his relatives into shades on a hard surface. Would not this planet be better without the Chairman Arthur O. Sulzberger Jr. and likes?

JWalters , August 18, 2017 at 7:02 pm

Well put. These people are like the "nobles" of medieval times. They care not a whit about the "peasants" they trample. They are wealth bigots, compounded by some ethnic bigotry or other, in this case Jewish supremacism. America has an oligarchy problem. At the center of that oligarchy is a Jewish mafia controlling the banks, and thereby the big corporations, and thereby the media and the government. This oligarchy sees America as a big, dumb military machine that it can manipulate to generate war profits.

"War Profiteers and the Roots of the War on Terror" . http://warprofiteerstory.blogspot.com

Erik G , August 18, 2017 at 5:59 pm

Yes, the VIPS & CN have provided critical analysis of these mass media scams, often led by the biased NYT.

Those who would like to petition the NYT to make Robert Parry their senior editor may do so here:
https://www.change.org/p/new-york-times-bring-a-new-editor-to-the-new-york-times?recruiter=72650402&utm_source=share_petition&utm_medium=copylink .

Mr. Parry may prefer independence, and we all know the NYT ownership makes it unlikely, and the NYT may try to ignore it, it is instructive to them that intelligent readers know better journalism when they see it. A petition demonstrates the concerns of a far larger number of potential or lost subscribers.

j. D. D. , August 19, 2017 at 3:07 pm

The "Russiagate" hoax is in big trouble. thanks in large part to the V.I.P.S. memo to President Trump, first published on this site on July 24. No surprise then that the Times has rushed to stem the bleeding, much the way the Post did in its threatening message to The Nation editor Van den Heuvel to retract its coverage of that explosive report. So what now? Shift the tactic to playing the race card, in an effort to oust this President, the methods, and in fact many of the same names employed in the staged event in Charlottesville, being all too familiar to those who followed the coup which overthrew the elected government of Ukraine.

Randal Marlin , August 18, 2017 at 3:48 pm

I think your statement "Yet, the reliance on Ukraine to provide evidence against Russia defies any objective investigative standards" gets to the crux of the matter.
Note how the evidentiary question is not significantly altered when, say, expert Dutch investigators confirm a Russian-blaming narrative regarding MH-17 when, and to the extent that, the Dutch experts form their opinion based on evidence selected by (anti-Russian) Ukrainian authorities.

I've used the example before of salted gold-ore samples being given to experts for analysis. Those who fell for the Bre-X scam some 20 years ago apparently failed to appreciate the disclaimer by SNC-Lavalin, who reported a rich find, that they had not done an independent collection of the ore samples. There was a high reported price tag for the analysis and people may have just assumed such an independent collection had taken place.

Sam F , August 18, 2017 at 6:03 pm

It is absurd that an admitted hacker in Ukraine, and its militantly anti-Russian government, are considered reliable sources in the smoke-and-mirrors game of tracing international hacking. Their only "evidence" appears to be standard hacking scams of simulating sources to throw off investigators. It is amazing that they can't even find a hacker somewhere else to make absurd claims in a plea bargain. Obviously NYT does not believe this ridiculous story themselves. It is the greatest fool who believes all others to be greater fools.

JWalters , August 18, 2017 at 7:14 pm

Israel controls the New York Times. Therefore this is an Israeli operation. "What Neocons Want from Ukraine Crisis" http://consortiumnews.com/2014/03/02/what-neocons-want-from-ukraine-crisis/

The Israelis appear afraid Trump will suddenly turn on them, just as he suddenly and totally disavowed all forms of racism, white supremacism, KKK, alt-right, etc. (And Bannon did, too.) He had needed that support to wrest the GOP nomination away from the Wall Street gang (who merely winked and nodded at the racists, a large and crucial part of their voting base.) Perhaps the glaring, blaring racist crimes and atrocities of Israel will be called out next?
"Netanyahu is silent for 3 days over neo-Nazi violence, while his son says Black Lives Matter and Antifa are the real threat"
http://mondoweiss.net/2017/08/netanyahu-violence-antifa/
"Charlottesville is moment of truth for empowered U.S. Zionists (who name their children after Israeli generals)"
http://mondoweiss.net/2017/08/charlottesville-empowered-children/

Sam F , August 19, 2017 at 5:00 pm

Interesting that you say that this is an Israeli operation. I once traced malware on my PC to three sources, one with an address in Tel Aviv Israel, and two front companies in NYC run by people with Jewish names. Complete coincidence of course.

I also traced a complex web of internet copyright piracy, which included front companies, servers, and offices in Panama, Cayman Islands, Barbados, Montreal, UK, and various piracy and tax evasion venues. One company "TzarMedia" (in English) claimed to have its servers in Moscow, but it turned out that this was just one more false-flag: it was in Texas, and its servers could be anywhere. So anti-Russia false-flags are standard practice.

Because some Ukrainian oligarchs are apparently Jewish with Israeli nationality and bitter anti-Russia views on both fronts, it seems likely that they would be hiring Ukrainian hackers by the dozen to create false-flag hacks blamed on Russia. That must be a real growth industry in Ukraine and Israel by now, not to mention Washington.

Peter Dyer , August 18, 2017 at 3:58 pm

This is sadly reminiscent of another instance of the willingness of the New York Times to publish "evidence" of malfeasance on the part of the enemy du jour: the series of stories in 2001-02 by Judith Miller based on Ahmad Chalabi's "evidence" of Iraq's weapons of mass destruction.

Roy G Biv , August 18, 2017 at 9:57 pm

At least it ended her career with the NYT. Judith Miller was being fed stories from the office of VP Cheney, who would later cite the NYT as evidence of his accusations of WMD, completing the circle. Similarly, Kwiatkowski went public with how DIA staff were pressured by Sec of Defense and Cheney to stovepipe cherry picked intel to support WMD. The malfeasance germinated in the mechanical heart of one Richard Cheney and the NYT and DIA were used and abused. Not faultless, but the bulk of the derision belongs with that administration.

Bill , August 18, 2017 at 4:12 pm

There's a bigger story behind all of this. John Brennan was abusing his position as CIA Director to wage a war against Trump. Comey and Clapper are also "in" on it. A conspiracy? Yes. Who told them to do it? By golly, it was President Obama.

Litchfield , August 18, 2017 at 6:07 pm

Yes, but don't dream of tarnishing the halo St. Barry with perfectly reasonable suppositions as to who put this mess in motion and, I reckon, continues to ride herd on it. He is "above the fray" (my a–). He is at the center of the fray. After Hillary's ignoble loss to Obama in 2008, she ate crow and went to work for him. They must have made some kind of deal, reached some kind of accommodation.

Richard Tarnoff , August 18, 2017 at 4:19 pm

It is depressing, but not surprising given their corporate ownership, that the entire MSM is unwilling to ask the same hard questions as does Consortium News. It is also depressing that the Democratic Party is happy to jump on this risky band wagon in their desperate desire to bring down Trump.

Drogon , August 18, 2017 at 4:25 pm

I find it bizarre and frustrating that the anti-Trump forces insist on focusing on the flimsy Russia-gate distraction when there are so many objectively awful reasons to criticize the Trump administration.

*Resurgence of Civil-Asset Forfeiture? Check.
*Supporting the private prison industry? Check.
*Empowering federal prosecutors? Check.
*Working to sabotage the Iran nuclear deal? Check.
*Dismissing anthropogenic climate change? Check.
*Going out of his way to equate Nazis with anti-Nazi protestors? Check.
*Undermining net neutrality? Check.
*Subverting scientific independence at the EPA? Check.
*Sticking up for Wall Street and bad-mouthing Consumer Financial Protection Bureau? Check.

BobS , August 18, 2017 at 5:38 pm

Trump's being criticized for all-of-the-above by virtually all of the leftist media and NGO's (Counterpunch, DemocracyNow, FAIR, RealNewsNetwork, Free Press, Public Citizen, etc) that criticized Obama, Bush, Clinton, et al for their many shortcomings and fuck-ups.
You need to get out more.

Litchfield , August 18, 2017 at 6:09 pm

But it seems like the MSM is standing in for "leftish" (sic) forces, as they combine with neocons to bring Trump down.

Drogon , August 18, 2017 at 7:43 pm

Just because the MSM doesn't like Trump doesn't mean he's a good person.

BobH , August 18, 2017 at 7:07 pm

Yes, but the DNC has put all their ammo into the straw man argument of Russia-gate. I believe this is what Drogon was saying, and I also believe it's a valid point.

BobS , August 18, 2017 at 7:52 pm

I'll agree that it's the focus of the DNC. But he wrote "anti-Trump forces", which encompasses much more than the DNC.

Joe Tedesky , August 18, 2017 at 11:49 pm

Way to go BobS, you have an excuse for every stupid remark you make. Since Drogon said some pretty factual things that made sense, you had to go find something to make a negative comment as a reply, and in doing so you made yourself look awfully foolish I'll bet your working hard to sound smart and clever all the time, guess what you make yourself look ignorant instead.

If you are a contributor to this site, then I want my money back. You certainly don't bring any class, or anything worthwhile to this site, with your crudeness. Although, you probably laugh at your own jokes, and think your funny. I've tried for the last couple of days to somehow deal with you with the hopes that you and I could have a civil conversation, but as I can see I shouldn't take it personally, since you seem to offend everyone no matter what what is wrong with you man.

Leslie F , August 18, 2017 at 7:07 pm

All of this is worthy of criticism, but not likely to lead to his ouster. The fools think Russia-gate will, but it is obviously that the Repubs. in Congress are not buying it anymore than most of the population who just declines to become hysterical over Russia when they have much more immediate problems. There is that matter of Trumps financial malfeasance which is real AND impeachable, but the Dem establishment isn't interested because it won't deflect attention from their internal problems and many among their number are guilty of similaar crimes, if not to the same extent as Trump. And the deep state doesn't care because it doesn't advance their neocon agenda like Russia-gate. I think, however, that it could help mobilize popular outrage which will be necessary if he is ever going to be impeached.

turk151 , August 18, 2017 at 7:50 pm

That is because those are all ideas that the MSM's benefactors actually support.

Roy G Biv , August 18, 2017 at 4:30 pm

Yet another strained effort to distract from the actual reality of Trump's Russian connection. Here is Bill Moyers' timeline of factual events. Tells the story better for anyone with an open mind.

http://billmoyers.com/story/trump-russia-timeline/

Drogon , August 18, 2017 at 4:41 pm

Does Trump have "Russian connections?" Of course he does. He's a billionaire oligarch and, as such, he almost certainly has corrupt connections with billionaire oligarchs from pretty much any country you can name. If the anti-Trump brigade was less hysterical, these connections could most likely be used to remove him from office. That said, is there currently any evidence that he collaborated with the Russian government to throw the election? No.

Zachary Smith , August 18, 2017 at 4:55 pm

Thank you for the link. Because of my "closed mind" I've concluded that Bill Moyers has lost it.

I made a couple of searches of my own and found this from Moyers:

"Raked over the coals by Republican inquisitors in Congress who could never make a case that she had acted wrongly in Libya "

Gist of the story, poor Hillary isn't a male and everybody has been after the innocent woman on that account. Obviously nobody would have commented if it had been a MAN with the same amount of blood on his hands. In another story he dismissed Hillary's email maneuvers.

h**p://billmoyers.com/story/hillary-hatred-revisited/

The man is an old Hillary-Bot and I've no use at all for that sort.

BobS , August 18, 2017 at 6:04 pm

Actually, if you'd watched her testimony, they couldn't make that case, the reason being they focused on BENGHAZEEEE -- -- -- -- as opposed to the attack on Libya itself (which all or most of the Republicans in Congress agreed with).
Also, it's disingenuous to pretend that Clinton (and female politicians, in general) aren't held to somewhat different standards than men.

Roy G Biv , August 18, 2017 at 6:26 pm

Agree with you Bob. But CN is infected with Russian bots. Used to be main go to site for me, now it's just the place for Trump and Putin apologists.

Anon , August 18, 2017 at 7:32 pm

"Roy G Biv" is today's name for one of the discredited trolls here lately, probably BobS himself, who pretends to be a former supporter. Thanks for letting us know that rightwingers are liars.

BobS , August 18, 2017 at 7:41 pm

""Roy G Biv" is today's name for one of the discredited trolls here lately, probably BobS himself, who pretends to be a former supporter. Thanks for letting us know that rightwingers are liars."

Thanks for letting me know it's so easy to fuck with your somewhat empty head.

Joe Tedesky , August 18, 2017 at 11:30 pm

Yeah BobS your the only smart one here. BTW You couldn't put a patch on Anon's ass even if you tried.

D5-5 , August 19, 2017 at 10:53 am

"CN infected with Russian bots and Putin apologists." Here's your guilt by association tool again. Anyone critical of the Official Narrative = automatically name-called to Russian bots etc etc the "commie sympathizer" BS of years ago. This kind of comment from you automatically disqualifies you as having anything worthwhile to say here.

Anon , August 18, 2017 at 7:30 pm

He just finished saying that they are being held to different standards.

BobS , August 18, 2017 at 7:39 pm

His implication was that they get a pass, when in fact just the opposite is true.

Roy G Biv , August 18, 2017 at 9:08 pm

I was never once discredited. Just censored and shouted down. Now you plant a flag and claim to have refuted. That's not winning an argument, it's just being loud and intolerant.

LongGoneJohn , August 19, 2017 at 4:11 am

So because of the comments, you don't frequent CN anymore? I call BS, mr perpetual war apologist.

Roy G Biv , August 18, 2017 at 6:24 pm

Actually the timeline stands on its own, and is factual. Try reading it and follow the chain of events. Very illustrative. Doesn't really matter your personal animus against Moyers and Clinton.

D5-5 , August 18, 2017 at 5:04 pm

The specific charge, emanating from the Clinton people, and used as diversion from DNC corruption and Clinton Foundation corruption, is that Russia interfered with the 2016 election. This is a separate matter from Trump has had dealings with and association with Russia since decades back. Conflating these two matters is the easy demonizing brush which you're pushing here. There is no evidence on the specific accusation that Trump worked with Putin to fix the election. If you think there is evidence, versus guilt-by-association, give us a heads-up on where and what it is.

BobS , August 18, 2017 at 5:42 pm

WhoWhatWhy & David Cay Johnston are doing and have done a much better job than consortiumnews in covering Trump's likely connections to Russian (and Italian) organized crime.

Litchfield , August 18, 2017 at 6:11 pm

That begs (that is, avoids) the question.
I suspect all of our presidents have had connections with organized crime.

Trump is being charged with, basically, treason for colluding with the Russians to influence the election. Two different animals.

BobS , August 18, 2017 at 6:17 pm

"That begs (that is, avoids) the question."
?
Kennedy, at least, at the wrong end of a gun.

Roy G Biv , August 18, 2017 at 6:29 pm

Malcolm Nance has also chronicled the rise of Vlad and his seizure of the Russian economy from foreign vulture capitalists, only to claim all the spoils for himself and his cronies, as well as how Trump relied on Russian funding to bail out his bankrupcies. It's shockingly ignored here.

BobH , August 18, 2017 at 7:43 pm

Malcolm Nance's book is a "best seller" because he allowed himself to become a shill for the corporate intelligence network not unlike Ann Coulter who became a "best seller" with right wing sponsorship. Such books are printed in mass by the propagandist and often advertised as best sellers before a copy is sold. Unlike, Coulter, Nance is articulate but he starts out by "poisoning the well" with the premise that Putin's Russia is evil. He never really questions the hack theory. His book THE PLOT TO HACK AMERICA is all the rage among Demo "true believers". It was given to me by a friend, no doubt to open my eyes to the evil Putin's maneuvers but apart from the probability that he believed it himself his conclusion was based on a number of distorted facts(yes, I actually read it).

Dave P. , August 18, 2017 at 9:25 pm

BobS: The organized Russian Crime mafia you are referring to had branches in Tel Aviv, New York, and London too. They were lot of people who were part of it, and must be close too Clintons too in their corrupt World in New York and elsewhere in the West. That is how our British Friends keep their economy running. The real Russians, the peasants according to the West they are, never really learnt the art you are describing.

May be, Trump had his hand in there in that pot somewhere too, when they were looting Russia in a big way. But they have not dug it out yet. I fail to understand with all these intelligence agencies, they have not shown it to the public as yet.

mike k , August 18, 2017 at 5:30 pm

If your mind is open like a sieve.

Roy G Biv , August 18, 2017 at 6:33 pm

The sieve serves to filter isolate particles of significance from the soup of information. A dam on the other hand prevents the flow. Most here have built dams against anything implicating Trump and Putin, and there is extensive evidence of it, from many sources.

BobS , August 18, 2017 at 6:56 pm

Good analogy.
There's enough criticism of Trump here (although he does have his share of apologists, especially with respect to Charlottesville e.g.'whatabout BLM?'), but Putin, not so much. I'm guessing he gets a pass from many of the readers due to him being somewhat alone in standing up to the US (in Georgia, Ukraine, etc) as well as consortiumnews being relatively unique in disputing the 'official' narrative with respect to the Ukrainian coup, MH17, & Crimea (as well as Syria). While Putin has served as a valuable counterweight to the American empire, it doesn't make him beyond reproach, and he may possibly have helped to put a white-nationalist authoritarian into the presidency.

Joe Tedesky , August 18, 2017 at 7:41 pm

Hillary put Trump in the Oval Office. Bernie would have won, but your darling Hillary made sure that he didn't stand a chance to win the Democratic primary, because her being a Clinton means she cheats.

Why don't you and Roy go peddle your insulting selfs to people who might buy what your selling. She loss, because she wasn't a good candidate. In fact Hillary would have loss to almost any of the insane Republicans who ran. You BobS are one dull gem of a person .now go mimic me you clown.

BobS , August 18, 2017 at 7:48 pm

"Hillary put Trump in the Oval Office."
She helped.

"Bernie would have won"
Agreed.

"She loss, because she wasn't a good candidate. In fact Hillary would have loss to almost.."
You should get your money back for the ESL course.

Joe Tedesky , August 18, 2017 at 8:02 pm

BobS why can't you just talk sensibility with me?

Roy G Biv , August 18, 2017 at 9:18 pm

Vlad does get some credit for straight-arming the West vulture capitalists from feeding on the carcass of the USSR and the state owned infrastructure, BUT he supplanted those efforts with his own. He's become one of the richest men in the world by the most unrestrained crony capitalism and is a skilled authoritarian ruler. Why he is so defended around here makes me wonder who these people are who feel so butt hurt when he is criticized.

Anon , August 19, 2017 at 5:53 am

What garbage: find the evidence and your intellectual superiors will gladly review it.

Anon , August 18, 2017 at 7:40 pm

Roy G Biv = BobS: you know as well as we that the utterly discredited Russiagate propaganda is intended solely to distract from the DNC corruption and Repub corruption. So you pretend that discrediting it is a distraction. The crook is always full of accusations of the same crookedness, like our Ukrainian hacker.

Roy G Biv , August 18, 2017 at 9:23 pm

Hate to disappoint you Anon, but we are not the same person and I have no idea who BobS is. I guess you find it easier to ignore dissenting opinion by lumping it into one persona. And your dismissal of Malcolm Nance is pretty thin IMO. The Russian hacking of our election and the financial connections to DJT are well established and creating slogans and memes like "Russiagate" is a cheap parlor trick.

Anon , August 19, 2017 at 5:56 am

BS. You haven't a single shred of evidence of any election hacking, let alone Russian, and apparently you know it. I demand your evidence, not propaganda.

DocHollywood , August 20, 2017 at 12:51 am

"The Russian hacking of our election and the financial connections to DJT are well established"

All that's missing is evidence.

Peter Duveen , August 18, 2017 at 5:01 pm

I only pick up the New York Times once or twice a year as a novelty. It has priced itself out of the market, as have many other newspapers, which used to be affordable by those eking out even the meanest of livings.

It would appear that the Russian hysteria is somehow connected with the anti-Trump hysteria in general, to which has been added the charge of his being a white nationalist Nazi, merely because he acknowledged two factions willing to exercise violence in conjunction with a politically charged demonstration. Yet, the latter charges would seem to divide so-called progressives while casting intellectually honest analyses like Parry's as sympathetic to white supremacists by association. This may seem to be quite a challenging environment for journalists to operate in, as the actual situation is so at odds with the conventional wisdom being touted from the same regions of the universe. I do hope the very fabric of truth-telling is not ripped to shreds by these counter-currents.

mike k , August 18, 2017 at 5:34 pm

So Trump is not a Nazi sympathizer? They sure think so. Ask David Duke. He tweeted thanks to Trump for defending them.

Litchfield , August 18, 2017 at 6:17 pm

This is faulty logic.
I have said it before and I will say it again:
In our two-party system, millions of voters don't actually have any party that represents their views. This includes what would be called in the USA "extremists" on both the left and the right.

Unlike what would be the case in a parliamentary system, where if a party gets over the 5% threshold they are represented in the legislature and may even participate in forming a government, in the USA such groups have to decide which of the two parties is closer to their own platform. IF David Duke decides that the Repugs are closer to what he wants, that doesn't mean that Trump is therefore a Nazi or white supremacist.
It means that Duke is some kind of Republican.

BobS , August 18, 2017 at 6:25 pm

Trump has received adulation from the white nationalist fringe unusual for a candidate from any party.
Even more unusual, Trump has reciprocated.

Joe Tedesky , August 18, 2017 at 9:37 pm

Knowing you BobS you'll probably think that what I'm about to say, is my supporting Trump, because you are still living the 2016 presidential election. When you bring up odd alliances, how about when Hillary Clinton and Victoria Nuland (and John McCain) orchestrated the coup in Ukraine that installed a full on Nazi Party, complete with swastikas?

Let's see if you can answer me in a decent tone. That doesn't mean you need to agree with me, but it does mean you are an ignorant know it all, if you don't answer me with some common respect.

Before you came here BobS, it was nice to have conversations with the many others who whether they agreed with you or not, at least the use of good manners did lead to our learning something worthwhile. You BobS, only bring out the worst in a person, with your little boy agitation. It also over shadows the good points you make, when you use ridicule the way you do. In other words BobS, I can tell your not stupid, but you sure come off that way with your words and actions when you do the silly things you do with your rude comments.

It's very rare that I burn down bridges, for you see BobS all my life I have been a bridge builder. So, when your ready to grow up, and become mature, then who knows, maybe you and I will become friends, if not well it's no big loss. Take care Joe

Zachary Smith , August 18, 2017 at 11:43 pm

Joe, they are both professional disruptors. The Roy G Biv character is too well informed to be merely mistaken – he's simply not honest. I'd posit he is CIA or back-room NYT employee. Or possibly a nutcase Zionist with a good US education posting from some stolen land in Israel.

Speaking of the New York Times, I'm done with them. I now have zero respect for the filthy propaganda site.

As I was reading through Mr. Parry's piece I decided to find out for myself if they were as bad as they seem. But how to test this? Long story short, I hit on the idea to see what they've written about the USS Liberty on this 50th Anniversary of the attempted sinking of the ship and attempted mass murder of all aboard.

Search terms were "USS LIberty" and "nytimes.com".

According to the Google results there were zero mentions of the USS Liberty on the NYT site within the past 12 months. Double checking, I went to the site and entered the term into the search there. Nothing.

They lie. They distort. They conceal. Mostly for Israel. These days Israel wants Syria to get the Iraq/Libya treatment. Russia is an obstacle. The lying, cheating, and distortions of the NYT and WP are focused on pressuring Russia enough to get them out of Syria. The professional newcomers here are accusing us of being Putin-Hacks, and much more. They do everything they can to disrupt discussion. I'd imagine it's because Mr. Parry's site is becoming one too many people around the world come to view. The deliberate chaos created by these guys is another small part of the attack on Russia for Israel.

By the way, have you noticed a single thing the BobS and Roy G Biv types have written which is notable in any way whatever? I haven't. I'm going to try very hard to be done with them as well.

Joe Tedesky , August 19, 2017 at 12:00 am

Thanks Zachary. Hearing you say that these two buttheads maybe professional disrupters is comforting. No, I'm actually honored that BobS started with me (I think first) the other day. Now I feel empowered to deal with the likes of these two clown asses.

You may have already seen this article over at the Saker, about the USS Liberty, but here it is in case you haven't, or for the others who may find interest in it as well.

http://thesaker.is/remembering-the-liberty/

Take care Zachary Joe

Sam F , August 19, 2017 at 6:33 am

I agree, Zachary and Joe. They appear to be trolls, and may use varying names for a while.

Roy G Biv , August 18, 2017 at 6:52 pm

You just said: " .charge of his being a white nationalist Nazi, merely because he acknowledged two factions willing to exercise violence in conjunction with a politically charged demonstration." Your use of the word merely is very disturbing. If it was abundantly clear from previous revelations, his performance this week should have removed all doubt about his sentiments.

Peter Duveen , August 18, 2017 at 7:41 pm

Yes it was wrong for me to use "merely," because the characterization of Trump as a white supremacist has nothing to do with reality, and the fact that Trump took a balanced approach to the demonstration was another excuse for unfounded accusations. What we have is people who want Trump out, who lost an election, who are doing everything they can to overthrow a president. Since the Russian hacking meme has been shown to be without merit (although it is still harped upon), the white supremacist angle is now being milked for everything it has. It's a hoax completely in parallel with the Russian hacking narrative. Reality has nothing to do with this attempt to overthrow Trump. And the CIA is fully behind it. So stick with it. People may be making idiots of themselves, but for them, the ends justifies the means.

Roy G Biv , August 18, 2017 at 9:29 pm

Well, I guess we'll see. But I believe you will be the one eating crow when the facts are laid out. It seems people have trouble holding disparate thoughts in their minds and require mutual exclusivity, i.e. the past misdeeds of the CIA vs the idea that they might actually be doing public service in this Putin/Trump situation. I don't have trouble with this and embrace both. The world and people are complex, not neatly black or white.

Annie , August 18, 2017 at 5:14 pm

I remember as soon as the leak that the DNC tried to subvert the Sanders campaign came out, Hillary's campaign manager Robby Mook stated the Russians did it, and obviously he had no conclusive proof. At the time I thought they already had it planned that if their misdeeds were ever revealed Russia would be blamed, and it would be a good reason to go after Trump should he win the election. It would also allow them to continue to escalate a cold war, already well underway under the Obama administration. It's basic science that you can't come to a valid conclusion if you have already determined what that will be. I never believed their lies from the get go. What is very disturbing is that the press is so complicit in pushing this lie while the American public, and in this case the so called liberal/progressives, are so willing to swallow it. For me, that's the scary part. Equally scary is that the CIA, FBI and NIA are equally complicit in this deception.

mike k , August 18, 2017 at 5:37 pm

Right, they are all in on this phony Russia scare gambit. There are plenty of other causes to impeach Trump. Our President is a crook, as well as a racist.

Annie , August 18, 2017 at 7:11 pm

I don't know if Trump's a racist, maybe he is, but did you ever hear Obama, Bush, or Cheney called a racist, or if they were, did the American people buy into it the way they have with Trump? However, what would you call people who destroy whole nations which are predominantly Muslim, cross sovereign borders in Muslim countries killing thousands of innocents with drone warfare? Is Israel in it's treatment of the Palestinians not racist? Are we not racist as a nation as well? I ask myself if these countries were predominately Christian would the American people be so laid back about our warring exploits in these countries? What about those papal bulls that gave explorers of the new world the right to conquer and exploit the indigenous people? Not to mention our sense of entitlement to practically wipe out the American Indian population. If indeed he is a racist, he fits right in. Take a look at our legal system where over 90 percent of people take a plea bargain and never get a fair trial, and most of the prison population is black although they constitute a small minority in this country.

I have a friend who berated me for not being more outraged by Trump's racist rhetoric, but she refused to visit an elderly, and lonely aunt who lived in a black area, while I move in and out of that area quite frequently. We're full of hypocrisy.

BobS , August 18, 2017 at 7:32 pm

"I don't know if Trump's a racist"
Trump's a racist.

"Is Israel in it's treatment of the Palestinians not racist?'
Amy Goodman had on a spokesman from the Anne Frank Center this morning forcefully (and accurately, in my opinion) criticizing Trump, Bannon, & Gorka.
The interview took a somewhat comical turn when Goodman showed her guest a clip of white supremacist Richard Spencer being interviewed on Israeli television saying:
"As an Israeli citizen, someone who understands your identity, who has a sense of nationhood and peoplehood and the history and experience of the Jewish people, you should respect someone like me, who has analogous feelings about whites. I mean, you could -- you could say that I am a white Zionist, in the sense that I care about my people. I want us to have a secure homeland that's for us and ourselves, just like you want a secure homeland in Israel."
The comical part was watching the histrionics of the guy from the Anne Frank Center as he avoided addressing Spencer's point.

Roy G Biv , August 18, 2017 at 9:33 pm

"Hail Trump -- " chanted by Richard Spencer after the election. Fascists love fascists.

Annie , August 18, 2017 at 9:37 pm

I usually listen to Democracy Now, but missed this one, and it makes a good point. Easy to point a finger at someone's perceived racism, but difficult to look at your own, which is too often justified. My point exactly. People talk about Trumps immigration policies and deportation of immigrants, but are mindless of the fact that Obama deported 2 million immigrants. Many Americans don't place what is going on now within an historical framework, not even a recent historical framework. I also believe there is an attempt to undermine the people who voted for Trump, which would make a coup more possible. I don't like Trump, but more then anything I don't like the idea of overturning the election of a president based on lies and innuendo. I really don't think that's a good thing --

Dave P. , August 18, 2017 at 9:49 pm

Annie, your comments are always very sincere and objective.

You wrote above: ". . .What is very disturbing is that the press is so complicit in pushing this lie while the American public, and in this case the so called liberal/progressives, are so willing to swallow it. For me, that's the scary part. Equally scary is that the CIA, FBI and NIA are equally complicit in this deception. . ."

By this time, it should be clear to any one with an open mind that there is no such thing left in the country as free and fair Media which informs public. And all these agencies you mentioned are nothing but a sewage pit of lies. And the liberal/ progressives are like most of the population, completely brainwashed and believe whatever is fed to them by the likes of Rachael Maddow.

Annie , August 18, 2017 at 10:35 pm

My brother listens to her everyday, and I can't listen to him. He's literally hysterical over the Trump presidency, as is she. He can't hear anything I have to say, or any other point of view. To me it is a total surprise since he is well educated, and will define himself as a liberal thinker. Bah humbug --

frank scott , August 22, 2017 at 7:54 pm

thank you annie

Drew Hunkins , August 18, 2017 at 5:23 pm

"The Times' rebuke toward any doubts about Russia-gate was inserted after Carr's remark although the Times had already declared several times on page 1 that there was really no doubt about Russia's guilt."

The NYT is now terrified of the genuine research and honest conclusions made by the VIPS. It's almost as if the NYT's suffering under some sort of OCD neurosis, the VIPS has them on their heels, though the NYT will never admit it. Ergo, like Rainman, they resort to repeating over and over and over to their brainwashed readers the Kremlin's guilt and the intel agencies' assurances. They try ever so hard to pass themselves off as the only reasonable and sane voices in the room, during these times of upheaval and uncertainty.

To use an admittedly stretched sports analogy: the VIPS have been doing, and are going to do, to the NYT what Floyd Mayweather is about to do to McGregor in their upcoming prize fight. A real authentic professional is about to dominate a huckster and charlatan who's out of his element, just there to collect a fat paycheck (not unlike the careerism of the NYTers).

Karl Sanchez , August 18, 2017 at 5:33 pm

Given the overall context of Russiagate and the "journalistic" history of the NY Times , it would be fair to assess it and its loyal readership as spreading Washington propaganda and unwitting Washington stooges, respectively. But which gets to claim the Greatest Propaganda Rag Prize: NY Times or Washington Post ?

mike k , August 18, 2017 at 5:39 pm

Too close to call.

D5-5 , August 18, 2017 at 6:02 pm

From Parry: the "certainties" blaming the DNC "hack" on Russia's intelligence agencies "lack a solid evidentiary foundation."

What would that evidentiary foundation be?

Would it be Donald Trump visited Russia therefore he's guilty of conspiring with Putin to fix the election, starting with hacking the DNC.

Or Trump had real estate dealings, mafia dealings, whatever, with Russia, and leap to "I wouldn't doubt it."

Or, I hate Trump so much I'll believe anything negative about him.

Or Russia was once the Soviet Union and a bunch of commie rat bastards so of course this story is true.

Or, The New York Times, that esteemed bastion of truth and investigative journalism says it's true so it must be true.

Evidence defined: what furnishes proof.

Yet, reminded by Parry once again, here is the basis for the January 6 assessments:

Quoted from the reporting agencies themselves on January 6, their judgments–

"are not intended to imply that we have proof that shows something to be a fact. Assessments are based on collected information, which is often incomplete or fragmentary, as well as logic, argumentation, and precedents."

Based on what evidence IS, here we have NO evidence. What we do have is speculation.

Clapper weighed in on January 6 with a "moderate" assessment. How does a moderate differ from a high assessment–was some of the logic–since the statement indicates no proof based on fact exists–somehow dubious or tendentious?

He was moderately convinced that it just might be so, maybe, possibly. Is that what this means?

Dempsey weighed in at "high" with the above statement, and perhaps somebody knows what this "high" meant, based on what?

Comey weighed in at "high" although his agency, the FBI, did not examine the DNC computers, and relied entirely on Crowdstrike, shown repeatedly as a biased anti-Russian source in the employ of Hillary Clinton.

This is the authority creating the flimsy evidentiary foundation of the NY Times et al MSM to which we citizens are now either a) skeptical or b) entirely convinced.

"Evidentiary void"–right on, Robert Parry --

D5-5 , August 19, 2017 at 12:08 pm

Sorry, meant to say Brennan, not "Dempsey" re CIA assessment.

Stephen J. , August 18, 2017 at 6:53 pm

An interesting read at link below:
-- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -
The Neocons Are Pushing the USA and the Rest of the World Towards a Dangerous Crisis
THE SAKER • AUGUST 18, 2017
http://www.unz.com/tsaker/the-neocons-are-pushing-the-usa-and-the-rest-of-the-world-towards-a-dangerous-crisis/

BobS , August 18, 2017 at 7:14 pm

The Saker is always interesting, and even though you find some good people over there (Michael Hudson & Mike Whitney, among others), the race stuff at Unz always makes me feel like I have to wash off.

John , August 18, 2017 at 6:58 pm

America is walking into a well planned nightmare. Spoon fed to you by the corporate media soon the spark of hate will become an uncontrollable wildfire

Roy G Biv , August 18, 2017 at 7:00 pm

It did not rely entirely on Crowdstrike. They are just the ones who referred it to FBI. If you don't think the USA has powerful IT divisions who can forensically determine source and method, then your fear of deep state are immediately invalidated, a contradiction. If you believe in the awesome power of the intelligence community, then you cannot use the argument that they don't know anymore than what the got from Crowdstrike. I understand the mistrust of the IC, but you must admit that they just might me trying to protect us in this case from enemies foreign and domestic.

Sam F , August 18, 2017 at 7:57 pm

No, no one can "forensically determine source and method" except in lucky cases or when tracing naive hacks. NSA got its trove of hack methods including false-flagging methods on the black market from a Ukraine hacker. So no one will buy garbage accusations of Russia from a Ukrainian hacker.

If the US IC has insider sources, they must be prepared to have them bail out and give testimony, after some reasonable period, where grave accusations must be either discredited or cause serious policy changes.
No hiding behind "trust us" after months: only fools will believe "confidence."

The same goes for MH-17, WMD, the Gulf of Tonkin Incident, and many others.

Roy G Biv , August 18, 2017 at 9:39 pm

What you are saying is true and reasonable. But consider that this is an ongoing counter espionage investigation that has been in progress for over one year, and these take years to conclude. You may not be able to trust them without seeing the info and intel, but you cannot simply conclude that the evidence simply doesn't exist just because it's not visible to you. There are reasons to hold cards close to the vest while leveraging suspects into witnesses.

Sam F , August 19, 2017 at 6:38 am

Fine, let them investigate, but they must not announce extremely serious conclusions to the public, with immediate political implications, especially conclusions that serve immediate political ends in the US, and refuse to provide evidence to the public even after a month or so. That is either careless methodology or fraud. The history of such "revelations" on "high confidence" has been a history of fraud by political appointees to the intel agencies.

I do not exclude the possibility that intel technology whose nature and location are critical secrets might be revealed with the evidence, although it appears that the secrets could generally be kept. Such technology requires having a safe disclosure method, such as disguising/relocating informants and devices. Most likely such technology would provide clues to direct other safely-revealable technology. If it does not, it does not serve democracy well, and probably is fundamentally a tool of tyranny, a product of excessive spying, and must be discounted by the public.

Roy G Biv , August 18, 2017 at 7:06 pm

By the way, the "Evidentiary Void" might actually look pretty filled up in private eyes of the office of special counsel. I wouldn't expect to see the all of the evidence of a case in progress, as persons being investigated are best left unknowing and useful to flip for a leniency deal. Again, the timeline will be very informative if you take the time to read it. It's merely the chronological presentation of factual events.

http://billmoyers.com/story/trump-russia-timeline/

Sam F , August 18, 2017 at 8:08 pm

That link is so full of invasive scripts that my script blocking software cannot be persuaded to show it.

Zachary Smith , August 18, 2017 at 8:37 pm

I use YesScript for Firefox on a case-by-case basis. If a site has annoying animations, it gets the treatment.

Roy G Biv , August 18, 2017 at 9:40 pm

Just goole billmoyers.com and look for timeline. It's so easy.

D5-5 , August 19, 2017 at 10:40 am

The time-line is irrelevant to the specific claim that Trump conspired with Russia to fix the election. Point to anything in this time-line that offers evidence.

Reminder 1: evidence is what offers proof on the specific charge.

Reminder 2: the IC January 6 statement "not intended to imply that we have proof that shows something to be a fact."

This very interesting statement suggests that a political motive was operative in these assessments, in which "what we want to believe" becomes "what we believe," or to quote Seymour Hersh recently, 2 + 2 = 45.

Your absence of doubt, particularly given the history of lying from our official government reps over many years now, as well as your swerving aside to an irrelevant "time-line," puts you in the camp of the propagandists.

Stephen J. , August 18, 2017 at 7:26 pm

This is disgusting: where is the outrage?
-- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- –

Missouri Senator: 'I Hope Trump Is Assassinated -- '
12:46 PM 08/17/2017
http://dailycaller.com/2017/08/17/missouri-senator-i-hope-trump-is-assassinated/

BobS , August 18, 2017 at 7:34 pm

I'm outraged.
Feel better?

Stephen J. , August 18, 2017 at 7:38 pm

I believe it is a disgusting and dangerous remark for a person in an elected position to make.

BobS , August 18, 2017 at 7:56 pm

That's why I'm outraged.

Joe Tedesky , August 18, 2017 at 11:37 pm

See BobS no one knows how to take your snarky remarks. Plus, I don't believe you when you say you were outraged, because your squirrelly mind doesn't know how to be sincere. Oh will you pay for my ESL courses? Jagoff.

Pierre Anonymot , August 18, 2017 at 7:27 pm

Mr. Pary, do you manage to send your articles to selected editors and journalists of the NYT, The Guardian, and their MSM mates? To selected politicians, including executive bureaucrats & MIC peple? It seems to me that some of them must read more than twits twittering? I think it's very vital that you do so or that someone does it on your behalf (and ours.)

Pierre Anonymot , August 18, 2017 at 7:27 pm

Oops, Parry.

Roy G Biv , August 18, 2017 at 9:42 pm

Parry is well known on Capitol Hill and among the MSM. Long standing feud, but no doubt respected.

Sam , August 18, 2017 at 7:37 pm

"a Ukrainian hacker whose malware was linked to the release of Democratic National Committee (DNC) emails in 2016"

Mr Parry, the malware and its developer had nothing whatsoever to do with the DNC. The New York Times erroneously made this claim and was forced to issue a correction. It has NEVER been claimed that this malware was deployed against the DNC. I think your piece would be strengthened if you mentioned that The New York Times made a big blunder about this.

Sam F , August 18, 2017 at 8:11 pm

Hi Sam, I regularly post here as Sam F and would appreciate your using an initlal to avoid confusion, if you will.

Taras77 , August 18, 2017 at 9:33 pm

This might be a tad OT but both links follow the reporting on Russia-gate hysteria:

This link is a review of a book on the Browder deception (title of review article is a tad more dire than the title of the book):

http://thesaker.is/cooperative-authors-the-killing-of-william-browder-deconstructing-bill-browders-dangerous-deception-alex-krainer-with-review-by-the-saker/

This link is to a very long article by saker on the neo con campaign to take down America and probably the world-very long but worth a read, particularly with fast moving developments in the trump white house; comments in general are also worthy of perusing:

http://thesaker.is/the-neocons-are-pushing-the-usa-and-the-rest-of-the-world-towards-a-dangerous-crisis/ ?

Joe Tedesky , August 18, 2017 at 11:13 pm

We should be careful, as not to dwell strictly on memorial statues. I will admit though, that the conversation should be had, but not without looking at the type of individuals who flock towards the racist trend. So far, of what I have been able to read regarding these young white guys, who have found comfort in racism, I find these misguided youth to be angry over the rise of minority groups. Reading their words, these angered white supremacist wrote, they complain that we spend to much time worried about bathrooms over them having a decent job. I say, why can't we do both. Someone needs to tell these racist, that it's not the various minority's who are getting in the way of their success in America, as much as it is themselves for not being able to overcome the many obstacles life has put in their way. They need to realize, that their future welfare doesn't rely on a minority losing any of their rights, in order for these racist to survive comfortably. What they need to learn, is they are their own best hope .attitude is altitude.

I also hope, that what happened in Charlottesville doesn't bring down the hammer on all public protest.

backwardsevolution , August 19, 2017 at 3:20 am

Joe – but there are too many "unskilled" workers coming into the country and it IS making a difference. Long time ago, when there was an abundance of factories churning out all sorts of products, there was a need for unskilled labor. People flooded into the country to fill these much-needed positions. You didn't need any special training; you didn't need to understand English.

With jobs having been offshored to Asia and with increasing automation, there is not a need for the same amount of "unskilled" labor as before, and yet they continue to pour into the country. What are the people who are on the left-hand side of the bell curve supposed to do? Innovate? Compete with the newcomers and have wages decline even more?

It's not the immigrants these kids dislike. It's the sheer numbers of them. Does that make any sense to you, that it's about the "numbers"? I agree that obstacles in life often make you wiser and stronger, but there comes a point in time when you start banging your head against the wall. What is the point of putting so many unnecessary obstacles in front of people? So some corporation can maintain a cheap labor force?

Sometimes my posts come across as sounding blunt. I don't mean them to. It's just that when things are reduced to words, you miss the shrugs of the shoulders, the eye movement, the sincerity in a person's voice.

Cheers, Joe.

Joe Tedesky , August 19, 2017 at 9:22 am

You never come off sounding bad, or blunt, with me.

For all the reasons you mentioned, is for all the reasons we as a society should require us to pull together. You see, I don't believe that all these problems should be remedied with racism taking over our young white mens political ideology. That's all I'm saying. If only our country would elect leaders, instead of billionaire realtors with tv celebrity status. If only this country's political parties were to not break the law running their gentrified Wall St hack candidate, who's only aim is to feather her historical bio. You see backwardsevolution, we need leaders, not celebrities seeking office for their own vain gratification.

Yes, for all the hard choices, and for all the tough decisions, should be the reason for our leaders to reach out or down, which ever you prefer, and should be what pulls us together. It breaks my heart, that here we are in 2017, the most successful nation God ever put on earth, and our white young men are turning into racist. Now, what could be wrong with that? I'll tell you what's wrong with that. Our leaders have quit leading, and replaced this leadership we the people should be receiving, and replaced this ever distant leadership with ignorance of doing their job to represent the voters.

Thanks for your response. Joe

backwardsevolution , August 19, 2017 at 11:49 am

Joe – " our white young men are turning into racists." I don't think they are, Joe. I think they get angry that they are not being allowed to speak, as if what they have to say doesn't really matter. I think that what we hear is carefully filtered, especially in the MSM, so as to make it look like they're racist, but I don't think this is the case at all. No time now, Joe. Thanks.

Joe Tedesky , August 19, 2017 at 11:59 pm

Okay, I will admit that our media portrays many of our events in the worst possible way. You more than likely may have a point that these young white men are not racist, that for many of them this white supremacist movement is just a vehicle to carry out their concerns.

What is wrong with our country's leadership, is how they speak to the problems, such as unemployment, with the sharpest rhetoric they can find to say how they are going to create many, many new and exciting jobs, but once in office they don't do a darn thing, as they go on to ignore the many promises they had made on the campaign trail. What these politicians seem completely oblivious too, is the voters who voted for them ,have memories, and they don't forget.

Opportunity only comes to those who seek it. Well that's not completely true, but in most cases it does prove that to those who try hard, much may be achieved. So if our politicians were to really want to change our sad employment status in this country, then why don't they do it? Would you invite 100 people over for a barbecue, and only have enough beverage and food for 25 of your guess. So, why can't the American politicians manage to accommodate a sagging work force, who's jobs they send off shore, with enough new jobs to fill the quota of the unemployed? Because they weren't told too, by their corporate special interest, or maybe they just didn't care enough to do something about it.

So, the young white, black, red, and yellow, person loses out. They lose out all because they were neglected by the very people who said they would help them. I don't know about you, but one of life's biggest disappointments, is when your savior turns their back on you.

I hope backwardsevolution I'm not sounding like I'm just spinning wheels, and I hope you at least get a peek of what is going on inside my head, with these important issues.

Joe

Realist , August 19, 2017 at 5:49 am

"Illegitimi non carborundum." (Don't let the bastards grind you down.)

Keep fighting for your principles AND civil discourse on this board, Joe. I offer the same words to backwardsevolution with whom you were conversing. You have both been stellar examples of respectful debaters.

I don't for a minute think, like some who keep obnoxiously pushing the accusation that most Americans, especially most Southern Americans, are racist, that racism underlies most of the dysfunction in governance of modern America, and that President Trump is the king of all racists, winning office only with the support of racists (and Russian saboteurs) to carry on a racist agenda thus depriving us of a new golden age under Saint Hillary the Great. The whole racist conflict in Charlottesville seemed suspiciously contrived to me to distract from other problem areas and to facilitate the ongoing coup against Trump (like him or hate him). I am NOT going to recapitulate all that yet again.

Certainly there were bone fide haters, some predisposed to violence, recruited into both factions by professional agitators. They couldn't have succeeded in provoking the violence if there were not. But, most working Americans are basically running scared, fearing they might lose their jobs, their houses, their medical coverage, quality education for their kids, and a viable future. Most whites, whether right or left, from the North or South, do not hate blacks, Latinos, Muslims or immigrants in general. They can see how disadvantaged those people often are and fear ending up in the same predicament. Most never say much about the situation, certainly not in strident public statements. Even the participants at political rallies are just a self-selected minority. Most who vote do so quietly, without comment. (My parents would never tell us who they voted for -- Keeps the peace.) More than half the country does not even vote. They choose to shy away from the political battlefield and certainly do not want to confront agitators in the street.

Call them alienated or disconnected from society, and condemn them if it suits your world view. We contributors to this site do put a lot of blame on those we decide are willfully ignorant. But I suspect that most of the self-disenfranchised simply don't have enough time to devote to learning the issues, choosing up sides and becoming activists, or even voters. I doubt that many of them think that tearing down a bunch of old monuments they were totally oblivious to will change their lives in any way and they certainly don't want to devote the time or energy to fighting about them.

If either the left or the right want to improve the lot of regular Americans, they will take some kind of action to bring back jobs to this country, not just high-skill jobs that require massive re-education, but jobs for the middle and the working classes alike. I thought that's what Dems always wanted to do, and what Trump said he would do. Why is everything still in grid-lock in Washington while both parties are trying to dump the man who opposed the TPP and said he would pressure corporations to keep jobs in and even bring back jobs to America–not that I think the latter is likely, but why has even lip-service to the idea stopped? If the Dems ostentatiously claimed THAT issue was their major bone of contention with Trump, they'd have a lot more followers than the few idiots who buy the Russia-Gate bullshit.

When Newt Gingrich swept the GOP to power in the congress during Bill Clinton's first term, he had devised a lengthy detailed plan of action called the "Contract for America." I was not an advocate of those policies, but they certainly resonated better with the public than today's "elect the Democrats to power and the Russians will never steal another election, in fact, we'll kick their asses from the Baltic Sea to the Black Sea." "Plus we'll tear down all the confederate monuments which should bring peace and harmony to the streets." If the real game changers can ever be implemented (which seems near to hopeless to me), racism will not be a major issue in this country, not if most of us are physically and economically secure and optimistic about our futures. (I've had two black families and a Latino family living in houses right next to mine in South Florida, and I had a mixed race family as neighbors in my previous place of residence. Do I care? No. Do they care? No. Anyone else in the neighborhood ever make a comment about anyone's race? No. Does it affect my property value? No, but the real estate bubble caused by the banks sure did.)

Sam F , August 19, 2017 at 7:03 am

Yes, good to point out that economic distress is a major factor in apparent racism and immigration resistance among US workers. This is a great concern to those who advocate international development aid, who must answer objections on economic effects.

The answer on globalization may involve treaties and laws restricting trade to nations that provide a standard of living that compares well with the lower middle class of the US, and to suppliers who provide well for their employees. While that would be cheaper elsewhere, so does not remove competition with US labor, it does require that the cost in jobs to the US worker is matched by benefits in development elsewhere. So our assistance to US workers is reduced by development assistance.

It also would prevent the US heartlessly exploiting cheap labor pools of oppressed workers, without you or I being able to help them by purchasing choices, or to escape guilt in their exploitation. It would be good to know that one could make purchasing decisions without grinding others into poverty and degradation to save a few pennies.

BobS , August 19, 2017 at 7:53 am

" economic distress is a major factor in apparent racism and immigration resistance among US workers."
Partly, though certainly not solely, with respect to immigration.
Racism?
Nope.
Makes a nice scapegoat, though, for racists and their apologists.

Joe Tedesky , August 19, 2017 at 10:07 am

Your comment Sam took my mind back to my younger days when this town had an abundance of steel mills. If you were a young apprentice sometimes on your first day on the job, no one seemed to want to teach you the ropes, because each mill worker felt threatened that you were to be trained to replace them. In time, if you didn't screw up, you would be accepted and inducted into the group. We love cliques and groups, don't we? I thought of this, because what you wrote reminded me of how outsiders are viewed by the existing work force. This comparison on a international level is what we are experiencing. Our leadership is to blame for this new dividing dilemma. Promises to replace your old job with a brand new better job, was the big lie. Corporate profits override human necessity, and with that we all lose. I don't think that all these retail outlets closing their doors, is merely due to Amazons convenient purchasing, but much of this loss of retail revenue, is due to the beatdown society just cannot afford it.

Good comment as always Sam. Joe

Realist , August 19, 2017 at 6:25 pm

You are very much on point, Joe, about worker pitted against worker. Who benefits from such a divide and conquer tactic? The robber baron capitalists are who. And, I use that term because the phenomenon is nothing new. It, like the bruhaha about race goes back to before the Civil War. Ever watch the movie "The Gangs of New York?" Both these conflicts, involving race (and ethnicity) and socioeconomic class, are laid out powerfully right there. And, just as in the movie, after our generations exit the stage following all the sturm und drang, all the hate and all the angst churned up because we are made pawns of greater forces, no one will even remember we personally ever existed.

Trump Tower, the Clinton Foundation, and Obama's Library in Jackson Park (yeah, named after the racist Andrew, not Stonewall) will still persist though, just like the confederate statues do today. But would we really want our descendants to forget this era and the players who dominated it? We build monuments in DC to the holocaust in Europe which didn't even happen here, not to honor or glorify it but so we collectively don't forget. Maybe the purpose of some monuments actually evolves over time to serve as a lesson rather than hero worship, and when Americans a hundred years from now look upon a bronze cast of Robert E. Lee, U.S. Grant or Douglas MacArthur their take will be, "war, how could our forebears possibly have embraced something so heinous, so destructive, so insane?"

Joe Tedesky , August 20, 2017 at 12:20 am

I always take away something of high value from what you write Realist. I agree with what you wrote here. I also think that our government should build right next to the Holocast museum, a fitting tribute to the suffering of the 600 indigenous nations who the U.S. had destroyed in its quest for manifest destiny. I'm serious, as a Sunday school teacher is on a Sunday teaching the word of God. If our nation's soiled pass, is to remain hidden by the curtain of everything that's just and right, then America's beloved citizens will never know to what is true. How can our nation become truly great, if it keeps on continuing to lie to itself. Making stuff up, will only last so long, until the truth will finally overcome every lie you ever told yourself.

The change in attitude towards venerating our country's historical pass, is a sign of how our American culture is changing. What got praise 100 years ago, may not be praise worthy by today's existing society. There isn't much to cry about, but instead we should understand that these changes will come, just as night follows day. I guess I'm a revisionist at heart, but I do believe that assumptions and conclusions, are a ever changing thing. So what we are witnessing, and experiencing, is just our own human evolution. Plus, I might add, as you know Realist, history is always being updated, and revised, and with it many truths that weren't known then become known.

It's always a pleasure to correspond with a reasonable, and sensible, comment poster as you. Joe

Joe Tedesky , August 19, 2017 at 9:32 am

Every word you wrote Realist, is excellent. I felt the same way about Bill Clinton, but your right, at least the masses at his time in office thought the economy was what it was all about. I will save going into the reality of Clinton's time in office, but your point is well made.

Whether it be the Democrates, or a truly changed Republican party, one of these political parties will need to accommodate the voter, if anything is to get better.

Rather than me go on, I'm just going to read once again what you wrote Realist, because I could not write what you had wrote any better. Your words are excellent to what we are talking about.

I always enjoy reading your comments Realist, never leave us. Joe

Gregory Herr , August 19, 2017 at 3:06 pm

I have to chime in Joe. I read it twice for good measure. Thanks to Realist and the many here who share such understandings.

backwardsevolution , August 20, 2017 at 7:11 am

Realist – thank you for your kind words. I always appreciate your well-thought-out and intelligent posts. They provide class and depth to the conversation. I, on the other hand, do not really belong on this site.

Sam F , August 20, 2017 at 9:58 am

Your posts have also been very useful and interesting, b-e.

backwardsevolution , August 21, 2017 at 12:15 am

Yours too, Sam. Always enjoy your comments --

Joe Tedesky , August 20, 2017 at 9:02 pm

Hey backwardsevolution your the life of this party, you never seem like you don't belong. I personally look forward to reading your comments. So brighten up, you are needed here, and that's no lie. Joe

backwardsevolution , August 21, 2017 at 12:25 am

Joe – you're such a kind man. Thank you. I enjoy reading your posts too; they're always very considerate. What I mean by "I do not really belong on this site" is that I just see things differently than a lot of others on here do, too differently. I'll hang around a while yet, though. Thanks, Joe.

Joe Tedesky , August 21, 2017 at 4:09 pm

"that I just see things differently than a lot of others on here do, too differently"

With your quote that is all the more reason this sites comment board needs you backwardsevolution.

backwardsevolution , August 20, 2017 at 7:15 am

Realist – excellent post. Thank you.

exiled off mainstreet , August 19, 2017 at 12:02 am

At Nuremberg, in 1946, Julius Streicher, editor of the Nazi propaganda rag Der Stuermer, was executed based on the crime of propagandizing for war. This article provides further evidence that the New York Times Russia posturing is a tissue of propaganda lies. Since the logical goal of the propaganda is war, and the crap they are publishing has similar validity to that which was published for decades in the Nazi Stuermer rag, then if the legal doctrines put forward in the Nuremberg trial could be applied to US war propagandists, their status as war criminals would be apparent.

backwardsevolution , August 19, 2017 at 11:42 am

exiled – yeah, I don't see a difference between then and now. Lies are everywhere, and not just little ones, but huge mothers used to sway public opinion. These guys really need to be in jail.

Look at what the Governor of Virginia, Terry McAuliffe, said re Charlottesville. His remarks were quickly refuted by the Virginia State Police, but if you happened to hear what McAuliffe said, yet missed the police's remarks, you'd be none the wiser and you probably would have believed McAuliffe.

"In an interview Monday on the Pod Save the People podcast, hosted by Black Lives Matter activist DeRay Mckesson, McAuliffe claimed the white nationalists who streamed into Charlottesville that weekend hid weapons throughout the town.

"They had battering rams and we had picked up different weapons that they had stashed around the city," McAuliffe told Mckesson.

McAuliffe claimed in an interview with The New York Times that law enforcement arrived to find a line of militia members who "had better equipment than our State Police had." In longer comments that were later edited out of the Times' story, McAuliffe said that up to 80 percent of the rally attendees were carrying semi-automatic weapons. "You saw the militia walking down the street, you would have thought they were an army," he said."

All total bullshit -- Talk about inciting people -- Why is this guy still walking around?

backwardsevolution , August 19, 2017 at 11:43 am

exiled – here's the link for the above:

http://reason.com/blog/2017/08/16/virginia-state-police-say-they-didnt-fin

Bruce , August 19, 2017 at 12:16 am

Neo-nazis in Ukraine = good.

Neo-nazis in the US = bad.

To be more successful, the right wing protestors should have paraded under a facade of free speech, human rights and democracy, all the while promoting Nazi policies. This is something US intelligence agencies, MSM, and Congress do every day. US politicians should wear little swastika lapel pins on their suits to avoid confusion.

BobS , August 19, 2017 at 1:24 am

Obviously, the correct answer is
neo-Nazis in Ukraine = bad.
neo-Nazis in the U S = bad.
Then there's answers I've read in these comment sections, for instance
neo-Nazis in Ukraine = bad.
neo-Nazis in the U S = bad BUT .whatabout BLM?
&
neo-Nazis in Ukraine = bad
neo-Nazis in the U S = trap for Trump
as well as this classic:
neo-Nazis in Ukraine = bad.
neo-Nazis in the U S = DEEP STATE -- -- --

backwardsevolution , August 19, 2017 at 1:59 am

Here is a post by Karl Denninger, a fellow who used to own his own Internet company in Chicago and is very knowledgeable about these things. After reading The Nation article by Patrick Lawrence, he said:

"I wouldn't go so far as to claim impossible, but I would say "highly unlikely." The second part of the statement, however, is utterly true -- it is completely consistent with either a SD card or USB flash drive inserted into a computer.

When it comes to Internet transfer of data, remember one thing: You're only as fast as the slowest link in the middle.

There are plenty of places on the Internet with gigabit (that's ~100MegaBYTE per second) speeds. But you would need such pipes end to end, and in addition, they'd have to be relatively empty at the time you exfiltrated the data.

What's worse is that there is a real bandwidth product delay problem that most "pedestrian" operating systems do not handle well at all.

In other words as latency and number of hops go up, irrespective of bandwidth, there's an issue with the maximum realistically obtainable speed, irrespective of whether there's sufficient available pipe space to take the data. This is a problem that can be tuned for if you know how and your system has the resources to handle it on some operating systems -- specifically, server-class operating systems like FreeBSD. But the "common" Windows machine pretty-much cannot be adjusted in this way and it requires expert knowledge to do so. [ ]

But it sure does cast a long shade on the claims of "Russians -- " in this alleged "hack." The simple fact of the matter is that the evidence points to inside exfiltration of the data directly from the physical machines in question, which is no "hack" at all: It's an inside job, performed by someone who had trusted, administrative access, and then doctored the documents later to make it look like Russians.

And, I might add, poorly doctored at that.

PS: Left unsaid in the linked article, but it shouldn't have been, is that if there was an SD card or external USB device plugged into the machine there is an event log from said machine documenting the exact time that said device was attached and detached. Find that log (or the timestamp on it being erased, which is equally good in a situation like this), match it against the metadata times, and then start looking for security camera footage and/or access card logs for where that machine is and you know who did it with near-certainty, proved by the forensic evidence.

Now perhaps you can explain why the FBI didn't raid the DNC's offices with a warrant, take custody of said logs and go through them to perform this investigation -- which would have pointed straight at the party or parties responsible .."

Read the whole thing.

backwardsevolution , August 19, 2017 at 1:59 am

Here's the link for the above piece:

https://market-ticker.org/akcs-www?post=232304

Stephen J. , August 19, 2017 at 8:06 am

Article of interest at link below
-- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -
FINIAN CUNNINGHAM | 18.08.2017 | OPINION
As Russia-Gate Story Stalls, Cue Trump Neo-Nazi Scandal
https://www.strategic-culture.org/news/2017/08/18/as-russia-gate-story-stalls-cue-trump-neo-nazi-scandal.html

Stephen J. , August 19, 2017 at 8:19 am

Could the quote below apply to today?
-- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- --
"Every record has been destroyed or falsified, every book rewritten, every picture has been repainted, every statue and street building has been renamed, every date has been altered. And the process is continuing day by day and minute by minute. History has stopped. Nothing exists except an endless present in which the Party is always right." – George Orwell, 1984

BobS , August 19, 2017 at 8:44 am

"Could the quote below apply to today?"
If one is a drama queen, apparently yes.

Joe Tedesky , August 19, 2017 at 9:51 am

Stephen it doesn't take a drama queen to recognize the true sorry state our society has evolved into. Orwell's 1984 is disturbingly coming to life more than ever. I read 1984 back when I was a sophomore in high school, but recently a lawyer friend of mine read that book, and he said that all he kept thinking about was me. He said, that while he read the book, the many conversations which him and I had had made him think of my warnings to where our civilization is going. No we are here, the date on your calendar may read 2017, but make no mistake about it we are living in 1984.

I dread that these violent protest, will deny our civil rights to form protests, and that would be a great loss. Although, these buggers in D.C. are convinced they must seize every crisis, and milk it for all they can. Each terrible disaster brings with it new restrictions. It maybe found when boarding a plane, or opening an investment account, as each tragic event brought us to these new restrictions we must live with. We are being played, but that piece of information, is covered over with conspiracy nut paper, and there go I.

Keep the faith Stephen, and ignore the trolling critics, who no doubt are paid to annoy us with our own hard earned taxpayer money .now that's Big Brother stuff, if ever there was any Big Brother stuff to disturb our inquiring minds. Joe

Stephen J. , August 19, 2017 at 11:12 am

Hi Joe Tedesky, very true, 1984 is here in 2017, but some are ignorant of the fact. i believe we are "Prisoners of "Democracy"
http://graysinfo.blogspot.ca/2017/07/the-prisoners-of-democracy.html
I always enjoy your concise comments.

Joe Tedesky , August 20, 2017 at 9:53 am

Reading the link you provided, all I could picture, was Senator John McCain doing a photo op session with his new found friends the terrorist. Also, I believe that if you pay your taxes you have every right to complain. That your ability to lodge a complain against your government shouldn't depend solely on your voting, because you still pay your taxes, and that paying your taxes, is your ticket to the complaint window.

What this country's politicians really need is a 'low voter turnout', so low as to delegitimize the results of any election, which would result in the world not honoring your country's election results.

https://criminalbankingmonopoly.wordpress.com

Good conversation, and link sharing Stephen. Joe

BobS , August 19, 2017 at 10:13 am

As if on cue, to illustrate my point.
Get out the smelling salts.

Tannenhouser , August 22, 2017 at 10:32 pm

Balloons full of piss. I'd say that illustrates anything remotely resembling a point you make believe you have made bobs.

Keep up the good work Joe. Thanks for all you and other's do here.

Michael Kenny , August 19, 2017 at 10:30 am

Mr Parry is simply repeating what he has said before in many articles. He even harks back to the Malaysian airliner -- Whatever other evidence there may be (MacronLeaks, the criminal investigation into which is still ongoing), Trump Junior's admissions prove Russian interference in the US election. Russians claiming to represent their government met with Junior and offered him DNC "dirt". DNC dirt subsequently appeared on the internet via Wikileaks. That those two events are wholly unrelated coincidences is more than I am prepared to believe. At that point, it matters not one whit how the Russians obtained the information or from whom. The Russians promised, the Russians delivered. Did Charlottesville really do this much damage? Putin's American supporters seem to be in panic -- Or is it Bannon?

Desert Dave , August 19, 2017 at 10:53 am

"Trump Junior's admissions prove Russian interference"? Unless I am not keeping up, all that happened is that a PR flak (not in Russian government) used the promise of compromat to arrange a meeting with Junior, where they talked about something else.

That's weak, my friend. And while it seems true that Trump's supporters are in a panic, Trump is not Putin.

And in case you want to put me in the box with Trump supporters, know that I am actually a LGBTQ-celebrating, anti-war, dirt-worshipping tree-hugger.

Gregor , August 19, 2017 at 12:47 pm

A sincere congratulations to some of us who have learned to ignore the snarky but non- contributive remarks
of Bob S. . Joe and Stephen and others, it seems you have found a way to communicate with each other and the rest of us
without responding to Bob S. That's good.

Bob In Portland , August 19, 2017 at 2:16 pm

Let me toot my own horn again. I figured all this out last spring. But the way the false information was fed to the public, large portions were revealed after the election, indicates that the disinformation wasn't originally to prevent Trump's election, but rather intended as use for President Hillary Clinton's casus belli to take the war to Russia. Everyone presumed she would win. You can read original piece here: https://caucus99percent.com/content/okeydoke-americans-were-supposed-get

But, as I suggested in April, this okeydoke was directed by the intelligence wing of the Deep State, probably the CIA, for Hillary's warhorse to ride into battle. It not only was supported by the CIA, it was created by it. And while most Americans never consider that the powers who are the likeliest suspects for the political assassinations of the sixties would insinuate themselves into the political system and support and promote their own, I suggest that another article, another one from the New York Times, which tries to explain Hillary suspiciously bouncing from the right to the left during the troubled times of 1968. What the article doesn't provide is that after volunteering for Gene McCarthy in early 1968 she attended the Republican convention. After that she worked as an intern in Congress that summer and wrote a speech for then-Republican congressman Robert "Bom" Laird about financing the war in Vietnam. Six months after that speech Laird was Nixon's Secretary of Defense, sending wave after wave of B-52s over Vietnam. Then Hillary capped her summer by going to the civil war that was the Chicago Democratic convention.

Rather than looking like a confused college student, not sure whether to be a pro-war Republican or an anti-war Democrat, Hillary Rodham looks more like one of the hundreds, if not thousands, of government spies that infiltrated all progressive groups back then in operations like the FBI's COINTELPRO. What did she do after that? She "observed" a Black Panther trial in New Haven. Then a year or so later she spent a summer interning for the law office in Oakland that represented Black Panthers in the Bay Area.

In short, she appeared to have an intelligence background before she allegedly met Bill on the Yale campus, which holds out the possibility that their marriage was actually a marriage made in Langley. And that explains why Deep State interests wanted and expected her to be leading the charge in 2017.

Here is the NY Times article on Hillary, published in September 2007 to prepare the Times' audience for her initial run for the Presidency in 2008: http://www.nytimes.com/2007/09/05/us/politics/05clinton.html?_r=0

Joe Tedesky , August 21, 2017 at 4:13 pm

As usual I take away a lot from your posting comments.

Michael , August 19, 2017 at 4:54 pm

Roy G Biv wrote: "It seems people have trouble holding disparate thoughts in their minds and require mutual exclusivity "

Sam F wrote: "I do not exclude the possibility that intel technology whose nature and location are critical secrets might be revealed with the evidence "

So what is being said is that the benefit to the USA of disclosing methods and sources has not yet reached the level at which the FBI or the IC will comply on their own to make public any evidence AND it also has not negatively affected the country enough to force our leaders with the levers of power in their hands to make them comply.

That's what I hear and it sounds like typical political posturing. So we will get more dysfunction in govt and more people dying here and abroad. Mean while we wait for the magic event that will put us over the line. Or not

Sam F , August 19, 2017 at 6:00 pm

Yes, it looks like political manipulation. The IC could have revealed sufficient information after a month or so at only moderate loss of intelligence asset value, both on the alleged hacking and flight MH-17. If they were unprepared to reveal evidence after this time, then they should not have publicized conclusions. By now they should accept the loss and reveal it, otherwise citizens may fairly presume that political appointees in intel are deceiving them for political purposes.

Typical sources that could be revealed by now:
1. A well-placed source in a foreign government agency: Try to claim another plausible source, email intercept, or recently dismissed employee or defector already protected; if that is impossible and the info is of great political importance in the US, the real source must defect to the US for safety. We must take the intel loss to preserve the integrity of public information.
2. A satellite or new technology: If the images or info seem to identify the source or location or capability, then modify them enough to make it look like another technology or location. Admitting alteration is better than providing nothing.
3. A snoop connection in a valuable location: move it, install another similar device, claim that the info comes from a distinct source or location, etc.

If the problem is "developing" witness credibility or forthrightness, which some may hope will improve, then the source is not yet credible and potential conclusions should not be stated with "high confidence" by anyone who cares for truth in policy making.

Billy , August 19, 2017 at 7:30 pm

The "Russia hacked the DNC so if you pay attention to the content of the emails leaked, you're a Putin loving unAmerican dog -- " lie used by the DNC to distract from their cheating Bernie. Really took off, practically every pretend news source on the internet repeated the evidence free accusation, as if it were a proven fact. As did all the MSM propagandist posing as news anchors. The sheer number of people pushing the lie was mind boggling. Now all of the sudden not a peep about it. I have to question the timing of the statue removal shit stirring. It seems like a convienent distraction. Why now? All of a sudden these statues must go -- -- I still haven't figured out what the distraction is distracting from. But the Nation and other web sites were starting to publish truth about "Russia gate"

Bruce , August 19, 2017 at 10:13 pm

Good comment Billy. The timing of these events is always interesting. Like when the MSM released info on trumps son meeting with a Russian, just after trump met face to face with Putin in Europe. Presumably the MSM had this story for months, and ran it to "punish" trump for the Putin meeting.

Bruce , August 19, 2017 at 10:04 pm

Again, its probably best to ignore BobS. He is probably a paid professional disruptor ..your tax dollars at work huh? The fact he is bothering to muddy these waters is both flattering to CN and evidence of the validity of CN's stance on many important issues.

Herman , August 20, 2017 at 9:50 am

President Trump will probably survive but the effects of his treatment by the media, politicians in both parties, and monied folks but the way he was attacked and its effects will forever leave a mark on the Office itself. It is an unnecessary reminder how mindless lynch mobs can be and how powerless the great majority of people are regarding what is happening and will likely happen to them.

Hank , August 21, 2017 at 5:04 pm

Russia Gate is a Farce. If by now, the deep state has not figured out a way to make it look like a Russian hack with some "credible" evidence that at least MSM and the masses can swallow then we must seriously doubt. Post Categories: Canada
William Blum | Saturday, June 24, 2017, 20:02 Beijing
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GR Editor's Note

This incisive list of countries by William Blum was first published in 2013, posted on Global Research in 2014.

In relation to recent developments in Latin America and the Middle East, it is worth recalling the history of US sponsored military coups and "soft coups" aka regime changes.

In a bitter irony, under the so-called "Russia probe" the US is accusing Moscow of interfering in US politics.

This article reviews the process of overthrowing sovereign governments through military coups, acts of war, support of terrorist organizations, covert ops in support of regime change.

In recent developments, the Trump administration is supportive of a US sponsored regime change in Venezuela and Cuba

Prof. Michel Chossudovsky, June 24, 2017

******************

Instances of the United States overthrowing, or attempting to overthrow, a foreign government since the Second World War.

(* indicates successful ouster of a government)

China 1949 to early 1960s
Albania 1949-53
East Germany 1950s
Iran 1953 *
Guatemala 1954 *
Costa Rica mid-1950s
Syria 1956-7
Egypt 1957
Indonesia 1957-8
British Guiana 1953-64 *
Iraq 1963 *
North Vietnam 1945-73
Cambodia 1955-70 *
Laos 1958 *, 1959 *, 1960 *
Ecuador 1960-63 *
Congo 1960 *
France 1965
Brazil 1962-64 *
Dominican Republic 1963 *
Cuba 1959 to present
Bolivia 1964 *
Indonesia 1965 *
Ghana 1966 *
Chile 1964-73 *
Greece 1967 *
Costa Rica 1970-71
Bolivia 1971 *
Australia 1973-75 *
Angola 1975, 1980s
Zaire 1975
Portugal 1974-76 *
Jamaica 1976-80 *
Seychelles 1979-81
Chad 1981-82 *
Grenada 1983 *
South Yemen 1982-84
Suriname 1982-84
Fiji 1987 *
Libya 1980s
Nicaragua 1981-90 *
Panama 1989 *
Bulgaria 1990 *
Albania 1991 *
Iraq 1991
Afghanistan 1980s *
Somalia 1993
Yugoslavia 1999-2000 *
Ecuador 2000 *
Afghanistan 2001 *
Venezuela 2002 *
Iraq 2003 *
Haiti 2004 *
Somalia 2007 to present
Libya 2011*
Syria 2012

Q: Why will there never be a coup d'état in Washington?

A: Because there's no American embassy there.

Tom , August 22, 2017 at 7:13 am

Putin's denial is meaningless (though he just as likely could be telling the truth) HOWEVER to my knowledge Assange has yet to be proven wrong (must less intentionally lying) about anything. IMO he's the ONLY person in all of this who has anything resembling a record of credibility. That MSM dismisses this demonstrates they are driven by narrative & ideology, NOT pursuit of fact/truth

Jamie , August 22, 2017 at 12:59 pm

"If you look at Facebook, the vast majority of the news items posted were fake.
They were connected to, as we now know, the thousand Russian agents."

– Crooked Hillary

Large Louis de Boogeytown , August 22, 2017 at 2:58 pm

There is just as much evidence that Ukraine hacked the DNC computer and releasing the information was another one of that countries 'mistakes'. If they are capable of nothing else, Ukraine seems to produce "software experts" who are involved in EVERY dirty game attached to the internet. The latest one is about turning the Ukrainian 'hryvnia' into real money – 'bitcoin'.

Richard Steven Hack , August 22, 2017 at 6:34 pm

Yes, it DID rely ENTIRELY on CrowdStrike.

All CrowdStrike did was send the FBI a "certified true image" of the DNC servers. This also applies to the other two infosec companies who weighed in on the evidence – Mandiant and FireEye. Neither the FBI or those two companies ever examined the DNC servers, the DNC routers or other IT infrastructure which is an absolute MUST in investigating a computer crime.

That is NOT sufficient. ALL the alleged "evidence" provided by CrowdStrike is either circumstantial or easily spoofable. Therefore the only thing the FBI can see on that "certified true image" is the "evidence" provided by CrowdStrike.

And CrowdStrike is COMPLETELY COMPROMISED by being a company run by an ex-pat Russian who hates Putin and Russia, someone who sees Russian under every PC.

Richard Steven Hack , August 22, 2017 at 7:32 pm

I should also point out that Jeffrey Carr has been saying this exact thing since the events unfolded last summer. In fact, from an email to me, he's said he's tired of talking about it.

Jeffrey is absolutely right. NONE of the alleged "evidence" provided by CrowdStrike in any way connects directly back to ANYONE, let alone the Russian government.

Some of it is laughable, such as the notion that the malware compile times were "during Moscow business hours." If you look at a time zone map, you see that Kiev, Ukraine, is one hour behind Moscow time. When it's business hours in Moscow, it's business hours in Ukraine – and can you imagine there are Ukraine hackers more than willing to frame Russia for a high-profile hack?

The National article and the research by The Forensicator does not PROVE that the DNC emails were leaked, because it is POSSIBLE for someone to access high-speed Internet. Unlikely, as The Forensicator states, but NOT impossible. At least 17% of the US has access to Gigabit Ethernet to the home and business. However, as The Forensicator correctly points out, it's hard to get that kind of speed across the Internet, especially to Eastern Europe where the entity Guccifer 2.0 allegedly resides.

Further, we don't know that the copies analyzed by The Forensicator were copied originally from the DNC. In fact, The Forensicator specially disavows that requirement. What is important to him is that the analysis proves that Guccifer 2.0 was NOT remotely hacking from Romania because 1) the speeds involved, and 2) the timestamps are all East Coast USA times (which he acknowledges could be faked but Guccifer 2.0 would have had little reason to do so or even think of doing so.)

The bottom line is that The Forensicator's analysis, coupled with Adam Carter's analysis of the Guccifer 2.0 entity, establishes good solid CIRCUMSTANTIAL evidence that Guccifer 2.0 is NOT a remote Romanian hacker and is NOT a Russian agent, but rather an entity inserted into the mix to provide "evidence" that the DNC leak was a Russian hack.

And finally, of course, we have Sy Hersh being caught on tape explicitly stating that he has seen or had read to him an FBI report that specifically states the murdered DNC staff Seth Rich WAS in contact with Wikileaks and had offered to sell them DNC documents. And that Wikileaks had access to Rich's DropBox account where presumably he was stashing those documents or using it to transfer them to Wikileaks.

Hersh is preparing a full report on this matter, which if it's anything like his earlier articles will bury the "DNC hack" story completely.

Remember that "Russiagate" essentially depends on TWO critical factors:

1) That it is a fact that Russia hacked the DNC; and
2) That it is Russia that transferred the DNC emails to Wikileaks – otherwise there is no real reason why Russia would hack the DNC and it certainly did not do so to "influence the election."

If number one is weak, due to laughable "evidence" and number two proves to be false, the entire "Russia influencing the election" story goes away. And the rest of the "Trump collusion" "evidence" is also laughable.

Now it may well be true that even if Russia did not give Wikileaks the emails they may still have hacked the DNC at some point. I submit that if the Russian government did it, we'd never know about it. First because they wouldn't have done it over the Internet because of the risk of the NSA detecting it (the NSA certainly wasn't monitoring the DNC) and second, they wouldn't have left any real evidence, especially not evidence linking directly to Russia.

Russian intelligence would have either used a physical penetration of the DNC network (easily done as demonstrated by US penetration testers all the time) or used a wireless connection into the DNC network from somewhere close to the DNC server location. That's assuming they wouldn't use the standard intelligence tactic of bribery or blackmail to get a DNC staffer to GIVE them the emails. In any case, the NSA would not have detected that hack, and CrowdStrike wouldn't have found any significant forensic evidence except perhaps some evidence that forensic traces had been ERASED.

Which basically means that whoever hacked the DNC – and that is only IF the DNC was REALLY hacked, for which there is NO PROOF except the DNC's and CrowdStrike's word since the FBI did not investigate the alleged hack itself – might have been 1) some criminal hacker(s) from Russia or elsewhere, or 2) some other intelligence agency trying to frame Russia for a hack.

It has been suggested that Russian intelligence DOES use criminal hackers on a contract basis either to perform hacks or to buy intel from said hackers. However, I find it unlikely that Russian intelligence would use incompetent hackers – and the DNC hackers had to be incompetent to leave the traces they did – for such a "sensitive" hack on a political party in the US.

You can't have it both ways: 1) that awesomely capable Russian hackers are hacking everything in the US connected to the election, and 2) that they are so incompetent as to leave easily followed trails right back to the Kremlin.

In general, so-called "attribution" of "Russian hackers "is nothing of the sort. It is merely attribution to a collection of hacking tools and alleged "targets". With the sole exception of Mandiant identifying specific individuals in a specific building in China, which if accurate was an impressive display of solid attribution, ninety percent of the time no individuals or agencies can be reliably identified by attribution.

Instead, what we get is the following:

1) Someone ASSUMES that because "target X" is a government or other sensitive facility that the hacker of said target MUST BE a "nation state actor."

2) Then some later hacker who either happens to use the same hacking tools or happens to target a similar target is ASSUMED to be either the same hacker or associated with the same hacker. (Note: the DNC hackers are actually alleged to be TWO SEPARATE entities – APT28 and APT29 – not including Guccifer 2.0.)

3) Thus a house is built on the sand of the first assumption and used to justify all the subsequent "analysis" and "assessments."

An example of this is German intelligence believing that Russia committed a specific hack, and that is now used as justification for believing the DNC hack was done by the same group, when in fact German intelligence merely stated that because of the TARGET of the hack they "assessed" that it MIGHT have been Russian intelligence.

In reality, ANY hacker will hack ANY TARGET if he thinks 1) that it will be a challenge, and/or 2) that it will be interesting, and/or 3) that it contains PII (Personally Identifiable Information) or other data such as credit cards which he can sell on the hacker underground. Therefore the choice of target doesn't really prove anything.

The choice of hacking tools is also irrelevant. CrowdStrike asserted that some of the tools used in the DNC hack are "exclusive". Jeffrey Carr has proven they're not, because he spoke to Ukrainian hackers and others who have them.

Bottom line: Without HUMINT (human intelligence) or SIGINT (signals intelligence) obtained offline that specifically identifies a given organization or individuals, attribution of a specific hack to a specific hacker(s) is almost impossible.

Most of the hackers who have been caught have been caught because they had poor operational security and allowed email addresses and other identifying information that connected directly to their offline identity to be found. Without that, most hackers get away, unless they can be lured into identifying themselves by bragging or being set up by a law-enforcement sting.

At this point, Carr is right: There is NO publicly available, non-circumstantial, non-spoofable evidence that a DNC hack even occurred, let alone that any hack that might have been done was done by Russians at all, let alone the Russian government. And all of the alleged US intelligence "assessments" have provided NO additional evidence.

Richard Steven Hack , August 22, 2017 at 7:36 pm

Correction to my post:

"(the NSA certainly wasn't monitoring the DNC)" s/b
"(the NSA certainly was monitoring the DNC)"

frank scott , August 22, 2017 at 7:41 pm

now it isn't just the nytimes but the new yorker as well, with a many pages piece in its current issue that reads like a doctoral thesis written by a gossip columnist and is a hatchet job on assange and in great part accusing him, putin and russia of electing trump.. hope you will comment on some of the specifics the writer includes which will probably be convincing to readers of political gossip columns and benefit from informed criticism such as you can provide..i don't believe any of this crap anyway.

[Aug 21, 2017] Bannon Firing Proves Trump is Winging It by Robert W. Merry

To a certain extent Bannon firing was the sacrifices that converted Trump into Bush II. Globalist coalition won but this is a Pyrrhic victory. the problem that brought Trump to the White house -- crisis of neoliberalism and first of all neoliberal globalization is unsolvable within the neoliberal framework. And Trump administration has now nothing but his bastard version of neoliberal and deregulation and all that staff. And to this "Javanka" problem and Trump looks doomed to be failure.
Notable quotes:
"... He has failed. While he moved quickly on the immigration issue, he did so in such a ham-handed way that any prospect for momentum was lost before it could begin. On foreign policy he has belied his own campaign rhetoric with his bombing of Syrian military targets, his support for Saudi Arabia's nasty war in Yemen, his growing military presence in Syria, his embrace of NATO membership for Montenegro, his consideration of troop augmentations in Afghanistan, and his threat to consider military involvement in Venezuela's internal affairs. On trade, it must be said, he has sought to move in the direction of his campaign rhetoric, though with limited results thus far. ..."
"... In the meantime, he suffered a tremendous defeat with the failure of congressional Republicans to make good on their vow to end and replace the Affordable Care Act. His tax-overhaul initiative is far behind the kind of calendar schedule needed for smooth success (by this point in 1981 Reagan had secured both his big tax package and an even more controversial spending-reduction program). And Trump's infrastructure program must be seen as residing currently in Nowheresville. ..."
"... What we see in these defeats and stalled initiatives is an incapacity on the part of the president to nudge and herd legislators, to mold voter sentiment into waves of political energy, to fashion a dialectic of political action, or to offer a coherent vision of the state of the country and where he wishes to take it. Everything is ad hoc. No major action seems related to any other action. In a job that calls for a political chess master, Trump displays hardly sufficient skills and attentiveness for a game of political checkers. ..."
"... It's telling, but not surprising, that Trump couldn't manage his White House staff in such a way as to maintain a secure place on the team for the man most responsible for charting his path to the White House. This isn't to say that Bannon should have been given outsized influence within West Wing councils, merely that his voice needed to be heard and his connection to Trump's core constituency respected. ..."
"... But that's not the way Trump operates -- another sign of a man who, over his head at the top of the global power structure, is winging it. ..."
"... ...A major part of the reason was, ironically, the economic prosperity that had come through industrialization, massive improvements in transportation, and the advent of telecommunications, ethnic and religious respect, freedom of speech... ..."
"... The differing subspecies of hominids are neither fungible nor equal ..."
"... "There are easily a billion or more people today, who have no concept of either the pipe or the wheel" ..."
Aug 21, 2017 | www.theamericanconservative.com August 21, 2017

In the wake of Stephen Bannon's firing, it has become almost inconceivable that President Trump can avoid a one-term fate. This isn't because he sacked Bannon but because of what that action tells us about his leadership. In celebrating Bannon's dismissal, The Wall Street Journal wrote in an editorial: "Trump can't govern with a Breitbart coalition. Does he see that?" True enough. But he also can't govern without the Breitbart constituency -- his core constituency -- in his coalition. The bigger question is: Does he see that ?

It's beginning to appear that Trump doesn't see much of anything with precision or clarity when it comes to the fundamental question of how to govern based on how he campaigned. He is merely a battery of impulses, devoid of any philosophical coherence or intellectual consistency.

Indeed, it's difficult to recall any president of recent memory who was so clearly winging it in the Oval Office. Think of Lyndon Johnson and Richard Nixon, both of whom made huge mistakes that cost them the White House. But both knew precisely what they wanted to accomplish and how to go about accomplishing it. The result was that both accomplished big things. Ronald Reagan propelled himself into governing mode from campaign mode as if he had shot himself out of a cannon. Even Jimmy Carter and George H. W. Bush, who stumbled into one-term diminishment, demonstrated more leadership coherence than the current White House occupant.

Trump's political challenge on Inauguration Day was simple but difficult. He had to galvanize his political base and build from there to fashion a governing coalition that could give propulsion to his agenda. Further, that agenda had to give a majority of Americans a sense that the economy was sound and growing, that unnecessary foreign wars would be avoided, that domestic tranquility would prevail, that the mass immigration of recent years would be curtailed, that the health care mess would be fixed, and that infrastructure needs would be addressed.

He has made little or no progress on any of it. And now, with Bannon banished from the White House, the president even seems to be taking a cavalier attitude toward his core constituency, America's white working class, beset by sluggish economic growth, the hollowing out of America's industrial base, unfair competitive practices by U.S. trading partners, unchecked immigration, the opioid crisis, and a general malaise that accompanies a growing sense of decline.

Trump became president because he busted out of the deadlock crisis that had gripped America for years, with both parties rigidly clinging to shopworn nostrums that fewer and fewer Americans believed in but which precluded any fresh or original thinking on the part of the party establishments. Consider some of the elements of conventional wisdom that he smashed during the campaign.

  1. Immigration: Conventional thinking was that a "comprehensive" solution could emerge as soon as officials convinced voters that they would, at some point soon, secure the border, and then the 11 million illegals in the country could be granted some form of amnesty. After all, according to this view, polls indicated solid support for granting illegals a path to citizenship or at least legal residence. Thus the issue was considered particularly hazardous to Republicans. But Trump demonstrated that voter concerns about the magnitude of immigration -- both legal and illegal -- were more widespread and intense than the political establishment wanted to believe. He transformed the dynamics of the issue.
  2. Foreign Policy: Trump railed against George W. Bush's Iraq invasion, the ongoing and seemingly pointless war in Afghanistan, Barack Obama's actions to help overthrow Libya's President Muammar Qaddafi, and the previous administration's insistence that Syrian President Bashar al-Assad must leave office even though his toughest enemies, ISIS and al-Nusra, were also our enemies. He sought to sooth the tensions then gaining momentum between the United States and Russia, and he did so in the face of widespread hostility from most of the foreign policy establishment. In all this he signaled that, as president, he would formulate an entirely new grand strategy designed to align U.S. policy with U.S. power and avoid foreign wars with little connection to U.S. vital interests.
  3. Trade: Trump took on the establishment view that globalized free trade provided an automatic benefit to the U.S. economy and U.S. workers, even when big trading partners, particularly China, imposed non-tariff trade barriers that slammed America's waning industrial core and the country's working classes. Here again he demonstrated a strong body of political sentiment that had been ignored or brushed aside by the country's economic and financial elites.

The important point about these issues is that they all cut across partisan lines. That's what allowed Trump to forge a nontraditional coalition that provided him a slim margin of victory -- but only in the Electoral College. His challenge was to turn this electoral coalition into a governing one.

He has failed. While he moved quickly on the immigration issue, he did so in such a ham-handed way that any prospect for momentum was lost before it could begin. On foreign policy he has belied his own campaign rhetoric with his bombing of Syrian military targets, his support for Saudi Arabia's nasty war in Yemen, his growing military presence in Syria, his embrace of NATO membership for Montenegro, his consideration of troop augmentations in Afghanistan, and his threat to consider military involvement in Venezuela's internal affairs. On trade, it must be said, he has sought to move in the direction of his campaign rhetoric, though with limited results thus far.

In the meantime, he suffered a tremendous defeat with the failure of congressional Republicans to make good on their vow to end and replace the Affordable Care Act. His tax-overhaul initiative is far behind the kind of calendar schedule needed for smooth success (by this point in 1981 Reagan had secured both his big tax package and an even more controversial spending-reduction program). And Trump's infrastructure program must be seen as residing currently in Nowheresville.

What we see in these defeats and stalled initiatives is an incapacity on the part of the president to nudge and herd legislators, to mold voter sentiment into waves of political energy, to fashion a dialectic of political action, or to offer a coherent vision of the state of the country and where he wishes to take it. Everything is ad hoc. No major action seems related to any other action. In a job that calls for a political chess master, Trump displays hardly sufficient skills and attentiveness for a game of political checkers.

And now Stephen Bannon is gone. The rustic and controversial White House strategist represented Trump's most direct and compelling tie to his political base, the people who flocked to his rallies during the campaign, who kept him alive when his political fortunes waned, who thrilled to his anti-establishment message, and who awarded him the states of Ohio, Michigan, Wisconsin, and Pennsylvania. As the Journal says, Trump can't govern only with this electoral base. But if his support among these people wanes or dissipates, he will have no base from which to build -- and no prospect for successful governance.

It's telling, but not surprising, that Trump couldn't manage his White House staff in such a way as to maintain a secure place on the team for the man most responsible for charting his path to the White House. This isn't to say that Bannon should have been given outsized influence within West Wing councils, merely that his voice needed to be heard and his connection to Trump's core constituency respected.

But that's not the way Trump operates -- another sign of a man who, over his head at the top of the global power structure, is winging it.

Robert W. Merry, longtime Washington, D.C., journalist and publishing executive, is editor of The American Conservative . His next book, President McKinley: Architect of the American Century , is due out from Simon & Schuster in November.

doctor10 Aug 20, 2017 9:06 PM Its all about ideas-and which ones are adopted by society.

The USA has a very poor prognosis-has yet to shed its 20th century Bolshevick Baggage. Occident Mortal doctor10 Aug 20, 2017 9:17 PM It's mostly down to culture.

Some people are more culturally predisposed to exploring and trying new things.

If you believe the future will be better than the past then you will be prepared to work to improve things, if you believe the world is in terminal decline and that the glory days were some time ago, either when gods or prophets did all the important stuff or when your locale was more prosperous then you will not be as encouraged to work on improvements and you will thend to hoarde meagre resources and live by thrift with minimal expenditure. Oracle of Kypseli Occident Mortal Aug 20, 2017 10:00 PM I think that colonialism is in play again as the advance societies are starving for resources and will invest in these countries in exchange. This will change the trend into better education, better jobs and everything that comes with it for the middle classes but perpetuate slave wages for the uneducated masses.

The world is not changing but morphing. It's the nomenclature that changes for the sake of political correcteness and feel good predisposition.

DjangoCat Oracle of Kypseli Aug 20, 2017 10:15 PM

The history of western investment in third world resources does not make for a pretty read. Look now at what has happened just in the last months of a major silver mine being closed in a small Central American country, where the local manager has been accused of murdering protestors and objectors to the mines presence in their midst, destroying the countryside.

The CIA seems to have had, as it's primary objective, the job of clearing the way for US and British, and Canadian industrial, infrastructure and mining interests to come in and take the resources. A good payoff to the man in power greases the wheels, and the people get nothing but a degraded environment and mammoth debt.

The next step is to restructure the debt, in the process privatizing state infrastructure at cut rate prices. This is nothing but mass rape and pillage.

Wake up.

Unknown User DjangoCat Aug 20, 2017 10:54 PM

England never freed its colonies. It simply changed the means of enslavement from physical to financial.

Eeyores Enigma DjangoCat Aug 21, 2017 12:38 AM

Too true DC but that truth doesn't work well with "American Exceptionalism" so we get articles like this one.

Ayreos Eeyores Enigma Aug 21, 2017 3:57 AM

"American exceptionalism" is just a small-time ugly consequence of the actual phenomenon: good old imperialism, taught by the British. And there's nothing wrong with it. All European countries have accepted NATO and american influence on them willingly. They have all recognized and validated American exceptionalism themselves. As subjects of an empire they now complain that the Emperor is quickly losing its clothes,

Crazy Or Not Occident Mortal Aug 21, 2017 5:38 AM

True you have to have "Ambition & Will" for change to stomach the difficult period of creating that change.
(eg Gandhi, US independence etc).

...A major part of the reason was, ironically, the economic prosperity that had come through industrialization, massive improvements in transportation, and the advent of telecommunications, ethnic and religious respect, freedom of speech...

This however while a factor is also bias. Post WWII no weapons (other than US) were permitted in Pacific war region and a decisive factor in limiting the influence of the Brits in their pre war colonies. Post colonials also saw war as a way out of colonial rule, using US leverage to oust Brit influence.

edit - probably BritBob will go apoplectic with this? Cue "Rule Britania"

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kRwj1SmPF5w

...and other jingoistic bollocks ;)

buttmint Oh regional Indian Aug 21, 2017 12:41 AM ...

all ZHers owe themselves trek to Mother India, quite a head turning experience. One comes to appreciate the West's "can-do philosophy."

This approach to problem solving is in small measure in India. India's fine burgeoning medical capital in Chennai (old Madraas) is a testament to talented Indians being schooled in Occidental universities and then returned to Mother India to set up shop. In many ways, India will lead the West OUT of their self-imposed medical nemesis. There is much progress in India. All Indians love to ORATE. You betcha, they stand on the corner and begin lecturing. A much better approach than USA's 535 idiots and grifters that make up the US Congress.

My own hunch is that India will eclipse the remarkable progress of China. Stay tuned as the world squirms.....

Oh regional Indian Koba the Dread Aug 21, 2017 2:54 AM

Unfortunately, it has become quite the living hell....

Western model of development + rampant corruption + poor engineering standards have made this a hotch-potch of a rending screech of a marriage between east and west....

Ayreos Oh regional Indian Aug 21, 2017 3:51 AM

Perhaps it's time to admit Indians got a chance to take their country back and move their society forward, seen through nationalist Gandhi, but Indians neither want nor understand the concept of moving forward.

Without the "western model of development" there would be no development in India for millennia. Kobe Beef Ayreos Aug 21, 2017 5:20 AM Without the Aryan colonization/admixture of many millennia ago, there would never have been any civilization on the Indian Subcontinent.

The Second Aryan invasion (ie British colonialism) left barely enough behind to last more than the coming century.

The differing subspecies of hominids are neither fungible nor equal . But there is huge amount of paper profits to be derived from pretending otherwise. There is a lot of ruin to be extracted from the Commons. At home, The African Equality Racket has garnered trillions so far, with no sign of stopping. Abroad, The Afghan Equality Racket has garnered trillions so far, with no sign of stopping. No signs of progress with either hominid population. And yet, we still have people arguing that culture is somehow separate from biology.

But back to the topic at hand..

Prediction: India returns to barbarism and warring superstitions.

asstrix Ayreos Aug 21, 2017 5:21 AM

The western way of moving forward is about consuming, using up resources. Once the resources are gone, they have to find a new place to plunder, in order to again move forward.

The eastern culture is in general about living in a sustainable manner, in harmony with nature. Their way is more about trade and not war. This is why they got conquered so easily.

Now I can't say which is better. Plundering and moving forward or staying put and living in peace with nature. My only hope is that the easterners have enough of the western values already in them to not repeat the old mistakes again.

Tallest Skil doctor10 Aug 20, 2017 9:40 PM

Reminder that Europe (((gave up))) the entire colored portion of the map above because Germany wanted a land corridor to East Prussia.

Son of Captain Nemo Aug 20, 2017 9:32 PM

"...the hope among people in the World Bank, the IMF, and other armchair intellectuals was that once the correct incentives were in place and institutions were organized, these structures imposed from on high would put the third world on a path to perpetual growth. They couldn't have been more wrong..."

Anyone who tracked the likes of Hans Adler a German/Brazilian Jew who worked for the World Bank in the 60s and 70s and who I studied under at George Mason University in the 80s knows that the "Latifundio/Minifundio" land tenure structure was the mechanism and means to exploit the gold fillings "literally" out of the mouths of the natives that owned and tended their lands throughout Latin America from the 40s through the 80s doing what the World Bank and IMF always has done it's best to get the multinationals in to take over the most important arable land for exploitation through "incentivized" loan deals that ended up robbing them of all their ownership for worthless "shit paper" -- ... Rinse and repeat for the "model" used everywhere else especially Middle Eastern oil.

John Perkins solidified it in his work "Confessions of an Economic Hit Man" 25 years later...

Too little too late I'm afraid. Only wish there were many more like him --

DemandSider Son of Captain Nemo Aug 21, 2017 1:05 AM

I only wish Perkins had explained the role of the dollar. This book, 'The Hidden Hand of American Hegemony' 'Petrodollar Recycling and International Markets' explains that better. He does explain how The IMF and World Bank keep them in line with debt, though.

The Cooler King Aug 20, 2017 9:23 PM

"There are easily a billion or more people today, who have no concept of either the pipe or the wheel"

But they can balance a mean jug of water on their head, which makes make them perfect candidates to GET RICH buying cryptos

Moe Hamhead The Cooler King Aug 20, 2017 9:30 PM

Obummer removed Churchill's bust from the Oval office -- He was offended by his graven image. I recall that it has since been brought back.

TuPhat Jason T Aug 20, 2017 11:20 PM

I agree, except for the part about the internet being responsible for wealth. That part is garbage. Internet wealth is non productive and eventually a drain on any economy.

DjangoCat Aug 20, 2017 10:02 PM

Read "The Confessions of an Economic Hit Man". IMF, USAID and BIS have worked in unison to rape and pillage the "Third World"

This is not a problem of the colonies falling apart, it is a problem of deliberate overselling of debt with a side of mandated privatisation, followed by ruin and sale of government assets, followed by grinding povery and tax to pay the interest on the ever climbing debt.

This is a system of overt debt slavery disguised as aid.

I think this piece is white wash propaganda. Tylers??

Koba the Dread DjangoCat Aug 21, 2017 2:00 AM

Well said, Cat -- The occupying nations left a cadre of native criminals behind to enslave their countrymen. The cadre of native criminals take their cut and pass the rest uphill to London, Paris or New York. They call it "Independence" -- Sort of like what happened in the new United States of America where farmers and artisans fought for freedom from Great Britain and New York, Massachusetts and Virginia aristocrats took over the country.

Oh regional Indian Scanderbeg Aug 20, 2017 10:40 PM

You need to read up on a litle history my friend..... your post is ignorant at so many levels, it's laughable. The number of highly advanced concepts that were stolen from the east over the centuries is legion. India and the ME were the root of all great knowledge, astrology, astronomy, metallurgy (Damascus steel came from India), mathematics (Zero came from India)......

Whites were shitting on the streets and eating their dead not 300 years ago.

Jhonny come lately with a gun, get it? And all your scientific wonders are toxic to the world and humans. All of them, including your "medicine"....

[Aug 21, 2017] Why Explaining US Internal Strife Through Russian Influence Is Lazy and Unhelpful by Alexey Kovalev

Notable quotes:
"... By Alexey Kovalev, an independent journalist living and working in Moscow. Follow him on Twitter: @Alexey__Kovalev. Originally published at openDemocracy ..."
Aug 19, 2017 | www.nakedcapitalism.com
August 19, 2017 by Yves Smith Yves here. This is a well-argued debunking of various "evil Rooskie" claims and is very much worth circulating. Stunningly, there actually are people asserting that white supremacists and the figurative and now literal hot fights over Confederate symbols (remember that Confederate flags have been a big controversy too?) are part of a Russian plot. Help me. Fortunately their views don't seem to have gotten traction outside the fever-swamp corners of the Twitterverse.

Author Kovalev's bottom line: When you are doing the same thing Putin and his propaganda machine does, you're doing something wrong.

By Alexey Kovalev, an independent journalist living and working in Moscow. Follow him on Twitter: @Alexey__Kovalev. Originally published at openDemocracy

On 11-12 August, violent clashes erupted between the far-right Unite the Right movement and anti-fascist counter-protesters in Charlottesville, Virginia. One woman died when an alleged neo-Nazi sympathizer rammed a car into a crowd of counter-protesters. There were numerous injuries and a major national crisis erupted in the United States resulting from and inspired by the rapid rise of white nationalist, neo-Nazi and other similar sentiments far to the right of the political spectrum.

As it often happens these days, numerous people on Twitter immediately jumped in, pitching the so-called "hot takes" -- rapid, hastily weaved together series of tweets with often outlandish theories of what really happened. These instant experts, who have come to prominence in the wake of the Trump presidency, have carved out a niche for themselves by taking the most tangential or non-existent connection to anything Russian and "connecting the dots" or "just asking questions". The most egregious example is Louise Mensch , a former UK conservative pundit (and sometime MP) now residing in the US. Mensch is the most extreme example of a Twitter-age conspiracy-mongering populist . But there are other people, with more credible credentials, who are also prone to demanding that "ties with Russia" (via individuals, events and institutions) be investigated.

Immediately following the events in Charlottesville, the writer and consultant Molly McKew and Jim Ludes of the Pell Center , among others, chimed in with their "hot takes", repeating each other almost word for word: "We need to closely examine the links between the American alt-right and Russia." These particular expressions ("links between X and Russia", "ties with Russia", "Russian connections" or "close to Putin/Russian government") are, essentially, weasel words, expressions so elastic that they could mean anything -- from actively collaborating with senior Russian officials and secretly accepting large donations from to the vaguest, irrelevant connections mentioned simply for the sake of name-dropping Russia in an attempt to farm for more clicks.

Almost every person of Russian origin involved in the Trump drama is "Putin-connected", although in Russia that definition only applies to a tiny power circle of trusted aides and advisors, a select group of oligarchs running state-owned enterprises and close personal friends from before Putin's presidency. The exaggerated tone of reporting often suggests something more far-reaching, coordinated and sinister than a loose collection of unconnected factoids.

So, what do "links between the American alt-right and Russia" actually mean? Much of the allegations of American alt-right's "collusion" with Putin's regime rely on the fact that Richard Spencer, a divisive figure in this already quite loose movement, was once married to a woman of Russian origin , Nina Kupriyanova. Their current marital status is unclear and, frankly, irrelevant. Kupriyanova, a scholar of Russian and Soviet history with a PhD from the University of Toronto, is also a follower of Alexander Dugin, a larger-than-life figure in contemporary Russian media and politics. Because of Dugin's outsized presence in the western media where he is often, and quite erroneously, presented as "Putin's mastermind" or "Putin's Bannon", this connection is often enough to be declared the smoking gun in the crowdsourced investigation .

Dugin has been many things to many people over his decades-long, zig-zagging career as an underground occult practitioner in the Soviet years: philosopher, lecturer, one of the founding fathers of a radical movement, public intellectual, flamboyant media personality. But he is not a "Putin advisor" and never has been. Although Dugin is a vocal fan of the Russian president, has repeatedly professed his loyalty to Putin and has orbited the halls of Russian power for more than a decade, he hasn't accumulated enough influence to even keep a stable job.

In 2014, Dugin was fired from his position as a guest lecturer at the department of sociology of Moscow State University. Students and academic staff had complained for years about the "anti-scientific, obscurantist" atmosphere Dugin had created within the department (one petition filed by the students mentions Dugin "performing extrasensory experiments" on them during lectures). But the final straw was Dugin's interview where he agitated to "kill, kill, kill" Ukrainians in June 2014 -- the early stages of Russia's war campaign in Ukraine. Both Dugin and his patron, the dean of the sociology department, were promptly fired after a major media scandal.

Later, Dugin was quite unceremoniously removed from his position as a host on Tsargrad TV -- a right-wing, reactionary private network funded by "Orthodox oligarch" Konstantin Malofeyev and launched with the help of a former Fox News executive. All mentions of Dugin's show on Tsargrad simply disappeared from the network's website.

Although Richard Spencer's own writings for his Radix Journal do have visible Dugin inspirations, it's inconceivable that Dugin has any significant influence on the American right. His teachings are just too eclectic, esoteric and over-intellectualised for an average American neo-Nazi who just wants to see more white faces around him. In fact, Dugin's overarching idea of "Eurasianism" goes against the grain of "keeping America white and ethnically pure": at its core is an obscure early 20th century Orientalist school of thought which accentuated Russia's civilisational continuity with Mongolian and Turkic ancestors, as opposed to the spiritually alien West.

Russia's conservatives of all shades of right have indeed been long cultivating links with their brethren to the west of Moscow -- well before Putin appeared on the scene. These have been well documented by scholars of the far right such as Anton Shekhovtsov . After Putin's onslaught in Ukraine, Russia, in dire need of new allies, intensified efforts to strengthen those links .

A trove of leaked emails released by the hacker group Shaltai Boltai ("Humpty Dumpty") in December 2014 did indeed uncover a sinister plot to place Russia in the centre of a wide-ranging alliance of right-wing, far-right, pro-life, pro-"family-values", hardcore Christian and other similar organisations in Europe and both Americas. But there's little evidence that anything resembling the coveted "Black International" ever came to fruition. Only temporary, tactical alliances have been more or less successful, aimed at promoting shared common interests -- such as Italy's pro-Kremlin Lega Nord party lobbying for lifting EU's sanctions against Russia -- or values.

In the latter case, the dynamic is reversed: it's not Russia influencing the West and exporting its values, but vice versa. It's Russia's parliamentary ultra-conservatives like Yelena Mizulina (now a senator) who have been inspired and supported by the American religious right.

Russia's last public attempt to unite the European and American far-right ended in a major media scandal in early 2015 when the "International Russian Conservative Forum" in Saint Petersburg was widely criticised in the press. The forum's Russian official supporters from the "traditionalist" Rodina (Motherland) party allied with the ruling United Russia were forced to withdraw their endorsement, and no further attempts to organise the forum have been made. Propaganda outlets like RT are quietly shedding commentators with far-right sympathies like Manuel Ochsenreiter or Richard Spencer mentioned above in an attempt to cleanse their image as a safe haven for Holocaust deniers and white power enthusiasts. Only a couple of days after Charlottesville, Russian authorities banned The Daily Stormer, a virulently anti-Semitic "alt-right" website, which had temporarily sought refuge on Russian web space after having been refused service in the US.

There is little to no evidence that any of the above had anything to do with the tragic events in Charlottesville. The resurgence of murderous, hateful ideologies in the United States is a home-grown issue. Young men with identical haircuts and matching, uniform-like attires chanting "Blood and soil -- " in the streets of American cities are inspired and influenced by many things, but a bearded Russian mystic is hardly one of them. Attempting to explain internal strife in your country by "Russian influences", hastily put together disjointed and exaggerated phenomena, is intellectually lazy. It distracts from getting to the root of the problem by offering quick, easy answers to complicated questions.

Ironically, it's also a very Putin thing to do. Explaining Russia's internal issues by blaming the West's machinations is the Russian president's shtick. When you find yourself doing the same thing Putin and his propaganda machine does, you're doing it wrong.

[Aug 20, 2017] Mr. Bannon's disdain for General McMaster also accelerated his demise

Notable quotes:
"... The war veteran has never quite clicked with the president, but other West Wing staff members recoiled at a series of smears against General McMaster by internet allies of Mr. Bannon. ..."
Aug 20, 2017 | www.msn.com

Mr. Bannon's disdain for General McMaster also accelerated his demise. The war veteran has never quite clicked with the president, but other West Wing staff members recoiled at a series of smears against General McMaster by internet allies of Mr. Bannon.

The strategist denied involvement, but he also did not speak out against them.

By the time Charlottesville erupted, Mr. Kushner and Ms. Trump had a powerful ally in Mr. Kelly, who shared their belief that Mr. Trump's first statement blaming "many sides" for the deadly violence needed to be amended.

Mr. Bannon vigorously objected. He told Mr. Kelly that if Mr. Trump delivered a second, more contrite statement it would do him no good, with either the public or the Washington press corps, which he denigrated as a "Pretorian guard" protecting the Democrats' consensus that Mr. Trump is a race-baiting demagogue. Mr. Trump could grovel, beg for forgiveness, even get down on his knees; it would never work, Mr. Bannon maintained.

"They're going to say two things: It's too late and it's not enough," Mr. Bannon told Mr. Kelly.

[Aug 20, 2017] The USA are about to face the worst crisis of their history and how Putin's example might inspire Trump

Notable quotes:
"... Putin outsmarted you at every step of the way ..."
Oct 22, 2016 | thesaker.is

Watching the last Presidential debate was a rather depressing experience. I thought that Trump did pretty well, but that really is not the point here. The point is this: no matter who wins, an acute crisis is inevitable.

Option one : Hillary wins. That's Obama on steroids, only worse. Remember that Obama himself was Dubya, only worse. Of course, Dubya was just Clinton, only worse. Now the circle is closed. Back to Clinton. Except this time around, we have a women who is deeply insecure, who failed at every single thing that she every tried to do, and who now has a 3 decades long record of disasters and failures. Even when she had no authority to start a war, she started one (told Bill to bomb the Serbs). Now she has that authority. And now she had to stand there, in front of millions of people, and hear Trump tell her " Putin outsmarted you at every step of the way " (did you see her frozen face when he said that?). Trump is right, Putin did outsmart her and Obama at every step. The problem is that now, after having a President with an inferiority complex towards Putin (Obama) we will have a President with the very same inferiority complex and a morbid determination to impose a no-fly zone over Russian forces in Syria. Looking at Hillary, with her ugly short hair and ridiculous pants, I thought to myself "this is a woman who is trying hard to prove that she is every bit as tough and any man" – except of course that she ain't. Her record also shows her as being weak, cowardly and with a sense of total impunity. And now, that evil messianic lunatic with a deep-seated inferiority complex is going to become Commander in Chief?! God help us all!

Option two : Trump wins. Problem: he will be completely alone. The Neocons have a total, repeat total , control of the Congress, the media, banking and finance, and the courts. From Clinton to Clinton they have deeply infiltrated the Pentagon, Foggy Bottom, and the three letter agencies. The Fed is their stronghold. How in the world will Trump deal with these rabid " crazies in the basement "? Consider the vicious hate campaign which all these "personalities" (from actors, to politicians to reporters) have unleashed against Trump – they have burned their bridges, they know that they will lose it all if Trump wins (and, if he proves to be an easy pushover his election will make no difference anyway). The Neocons have nothing to lose and they will fight to the very last one. What could Trump possibly do to get anything done if he is surrounded by Neocons and their agents of influence? Bring in an entirely different team? How is he going to vet them? His first choice was to take Pence as a VP – a disaster (he is already sabotaging Trump on Syria and the elections outcome). I *dread* the hear whom Trump will appoint as a White House Chief of Staff as I am afraid that just to appease the Neocons he will appoint some new version of the infamous Rahm Emanuel And should Trump prove that he has both principles and courage, the Neocons can always "Dallas" him and replace him with Pence. Et voilà !

I see only one way out:

The (imperfect) Putin model

When Putin came to power he inherited a Kremlin every bit as corrupt and traitor-infested as the White House nowadays. As for Russia, she was in pretty much the same sorry shape as the Independent Nazi-run Ukraine. Russia was also run by bankers and AngloZionist puppets and most Russians led miserable lives. The big difference is that, unlike what is happening with Trump, the Russian version of the US Neocons never saw the danger coming from Putin. He was selected by the ruling elites as the representative of the security services to serve along a representative of the big corporate money, Medvedev. This was a compromise solution between the only two parts of the Russian society which were still functioning, the security services and oil/gas money. Putin looked like a petty bureaucrat in an ill fitting suit, a shy and somewhat awkward little guy who would present no threat to the powerful oligarchs of the semibankirshchina (the Seven Bankers) running Russia. Except that he turned out to be one of the most formidable rulers in Russia history. Here is what Putin did as soon as he came to power:

First, he re-established the credibility of the Kremlin with the armed forces and security services by rapidly and effectively crushing the Wahabi insurgency in Chechnia. This established his personal credibility with the people he would have to rely on to deal with the oligarchs.

Second, he used the fact that everybody, every single businessman and corporation in Russia, did more or less break the law during the 1990s, if only because there really was no law. Instead of cracking down on the likes of Berezovski or Khodorkovski for their political activities, he crushed them with (absolutely true) charges of corruption. Crucially, he did that very publicly, sending a clear message to the other arch-enemy: the media.

Third, contrary to the hallucinations of the western human rights agencies and Russian liberals, Putin never directly suppressed any dissent, or cracked down on the media or, even less so, ordered the murder of anybody. He did something much smarter. Remember that modern journalists are first and foremost presstitutes, right? By mercilessly cracking down on the oligarchs Putin deprived the presstitutes of their source of income and political support. Some emigrated to the Ukraine, others simply resigned, and a few were left like on a reservation or a zoo on a few very clearly identifiable media outlets such as Dozhd TV, Ekho Moskvy Radio or the newspaper Kommersant. Those who emigrated became irrelevant, as for those who stayed in the "liberal zoo" – they were harmless has they had no credibility left. Crucially, everybody else "got the message". After that, all it took is the appointment a few real patriots (such as Dmitri Kiselev, Margarita Simonian and others) in key positions and everybody quickly understood that the winds of fortune had now turned.

Fourth, once the main media outlets were returned back to sanity it did not take too long for the "liberal" (in the Russian sense, meaning pro-USA) parties to enter into a death-spiral from which they have never recovered. That, in turn, resulted in the ejection of all "liberals" form the Duma which now has only 4 parties, all of them more or less "patriotic".

That's the part that worked.

So far, Putin failed to eject the 5th columnists, whom I call the "Atlantic Integrationists" (for details, including their names, see here ) from the government itself.. Even the notorious Alexei Kudrin was not fired by Putin, but by Medvedev. The security services succeeded in finally getting rid of Anatolii Serdyukov but they did not have power needed to put him in jail. I still think that a purge will happen while Alexander Mercouris disagrees . Whatever may be the case, what is certain is that Putin has not tackled the 5th columnists in the banking/finance sector and that the latter have being very careful not to give him a pretext to take action against them.

Russia and the USA are very different countries, and no recipe can be simply copied from one to another. Still, there are valuable lessons from the "Putin model" for Trump, not the least of which that his most formidable enemies probably are sitting in the Fed. One Russian analyst – Rostislav Ishchenko – has suggested that Trump could somehow force the Fed to increase interest rates, which would result in a bankruptcy domino effect for US banks which might be the only way to finally crush the Fed and re-take control of US banking. Maybe. I honestly am not qualified to have an opinion about that.

What is sure is that for the time being the USA will continue to look like that:

A homeless man, possibly a veteran, has built a "corridor of flags" to get people to give him money. Florida, October 2016.

Rich on cheapo patriotism and otherwise poor.

Hillary thinks that this is a stunning success. Trump thinks that this is a disgrace. I submit that the choice between these two is really very simple.

To those who are saying that there cannot be a schism in the AngloZionist elites, I will reply that the example of the conspiracy to prevent Dominique Strauss-Kahn from becoming the next French President shows that, just like hyenas, AngloZionist leaders do sometimes turn on each other. That happens in all regimes, regardless of their political ideology (think SS against SA in Nazi Germany or Trotskists against Stalinists in Boshevik USSR).

Of brooms and body parts

Leon Trotsky used to say the Soviet Russia needed to be cleansed from anarchists and noblemen with an "iron broom". He even wrote an article in the Pravda entitled "We need an iron broom". Another genocidal manic, Felix Derzhinskii, founder of the notorious ChK secret police, used to say that a secret police officer must have a "burning heart, a cool head and clean hands". One would seek weakness, or even compassion, in vain from folks like these. These are ideology-driven "true believers", sociopaths with no sense of empathy, profoundly evil people with a genocidal hatred of anybody standing in their way.

Hillary Clinton and her gang of Neocons are the spiritual (and sometimes even physical) successors of the Soviet Bolsheviks and they, just like their Bolshevik forefathers, will not hesitate for a second to crush their enemies. Donald Trump – assuming he is for real and actually means what he says – has to understand that and do what Putin did: strike first and strike hard. Stalin, by the way, also did exactly that, and for a while the Trotskyists were crushed, but in the years following Stalin's death they gradually bounced back only to seize power again in 1991 (not Trotskyists in a literal sense of the word, but russophobic Jews who had nothing but contempt for the Russian people). I think that the jury is still out on whether Putin will succeed in finally removing the 5th columnist from power. What is sure is that Russia is at least semi-free from the control of these people and that the US is their last bastion right now. Their maniacal hatred of Trump can in part be explained by the sense of danger these folks feel, being threatened for the first time in what they see as their homeland (I don't mean that in a patriotic sense – but rather like a parasite care for "his" host). And maybe they have some good reason to fear. I sure hope that they do.

I am rather encouraged by the way Trump handled the latest attempt to make him cower in fear. Yesterday Trump dared to declare that since the election might be rigged or stolen he does not pledge to recognize their outcome. And even though every semi-literate person knows that elections in the USA have been rigged and stolen in the past, including Presidential ones, by saying that Trump committed a major case of crimethink . The Ziomedia pounced on him with self-righteous outrage and put immense pressure on him to retract his statement (which, by the way, contradicted Pence's stance). Instead of rolling over and recanting his "crime", Trump replied with this:

http://www.liveleak.com/ll_embed?f=7fb0ec4a8ebe

Beautiful no? Let's hope he continues to show the same courage.

Trump is doing now what Jean-Marie Le Pen did in France: he is showing the Neocons that be that he dares to openly defy them, that he refuses to play by their rules, that their outrage has no effect on his and that they don't get to censor or, even less so, silence him. That is also what he did when, yet again, he refused to accuse the Russians of cyber-attacks and, instead, repeated that it would be a good thing for Russia and the USA to be friends. Again, I am not sure that how long he will be able to hold that line, but for the time being there is no denying that he is openly defying the AngloZionist deep state and Empire.

Conclusion

The United States are about to enter what might possibly be the deepest and most dangerous crisis of their history. If Trump is elected, he will have to immediately launch a well-planned attack against his opponents without giving them any pretext to accuse him of politically motivated repressions. In Russia, Putin could count on the support of the military and the security services. I don't know whom Trump can count on, but I am fairly confident that there are still true patriots in the US armed forces. If Trump gets the right person to head the FBI, he might also use that agency to clean house and deliver a steady streams of indictments for corruption, conspiracy to [fill the blank], abuse of authority, obstruction of justice and dereliction of duty, etc. Since such crimes are widespread in the current circles of power, they are also easy to prove and cracking down on corruption would get Trump a standing ovation from the American people. Next, just as Putin in Russia, Trump will have to deal with the media. How exactly, I don't know. But he will have to face this beast and defeat it. At every step in this process he will have to get the proactive support of the people, just like Putin does. Can he do it?

I don't know. Honestly, I doubt it. First, I still don't trust him. But, more relevantly, I would argue that to overthrow the deep state and restore true people power is even harder in the USA than it was in Russia. I have always believed that the AngloZionist Empire will have to be brought down from the outside, most probably by a combination of military and economic defeats. I still believe that. However, I might be wrong – in fact, I hope that I am – and maybe Trump will be the guy to bring down the Empire in order to save the United States. If there is such a possibility, however slim, I think that we have to believe in it and act on it as all the alternatives are far worse.

The Saker

[Aug 20, 2017] The chattering political classes have converged on the belief that Trump is not only incompetent, but dangerous. They use identity politics to discredit his base.

The USA started to imitate post-Maydan Ukraine: another war with statues... "Identity politics" flourishing in some unusual areas like history of the country. Which like in Ukraine is pretty divisive.
McAuliffe was co-chairman of Hillary Clinton's 2008 presidential campaign, and was one of her superdelegates at the 2008 Democratic National Convention.
Notable quotes:
"... The thrust appears to be to undercut components of his base while ratcheting up indignation. WaPo and the Times dribble out salacious "news" stories that, often as not, are substance free but written in a hyperbolic style that assumes a kind of intrinsic Trump guilt and leaps from there. They know better. No doubt they rationalize this as meeting kind with kind. ..."
"... It reminds me of the coverage in the run up to Nixon's resignation. Except this one's on steroids. I believe the DC folks fully expect Trump to be removed and now are focusing on the strategy that accrues the maximum benefit to their party. Unfortunately, things strongly favor the Democrats. ..."
"... Democrats want to drag this out as long as possible and enjoy the chipping away at segments of the Republican base while the Republicans want to clear the path before the midterms. However, the Republican officials, much as many or most can't stand Trump, have to weave a thin line because taking action against Trump would kill them in the primaries and possibly in the general. ..."
"... So the Democrats are licking their chops and hoping this can continue until the midterms with the expectation they will then control Congress. ..."
"... Some of you still don't get it. Trump isn't our last chance. Its your last chance. Yet still so many of you oxygen thieves still insist RUSSIA is the reason Hillary lost. You guys are going to agitate your way into a CW because you can't accept you lost. Many of you agitating are fat, slow, and stupid, with no idea how to survive. ..."
"... From day one after the unexpected (for the punditry class and their media coherts) elections results everybody was piling on Trump. The stories abound about his Russia Collusion (after one year of investigation not even a smoke signal) or his narcistic attitudes (mind you LeeG Trump always addresses people as We where as Humble Obama always addresses in the first person). ..."
"... I get this feeling the Swamp doesn't want a President who will at least try to do something for the American people rather than promises (Remember Hope and Change ala Obama, he got the Change quite a bit of it for him and his Banker Pals from what is left of the treasury and we the people are left with Hope). ..."
"... Someone on the last thread said in a very elegant way that what binds us Americans together is one thing, economic opportunity for all. I believe that was Trump's election platform, with the "for all" emphasized frequently. ..."
"... There is quite the precedent for the media treating trump as they do, Putin has been treated quite similarly, as well as any other politician the media cars disagree with [neocons/neolibs]... ..."
"... I think, during the election campaign, the negative media coverage may have well be a boon to him. Anyone who listened to the media, and then actually turned up at a Trump rally to see for himself, immediately got the idea that the media is full of shit. I think this won Trump a fair number of converts. ..."
"... But I think by now they are just over the top. It almost reminds me of Soviet denunciations of old communists who have fallen out of favor. ..."
"... The one clear thing is that there is a coup attempt to get rid of Donald Trump led by globalist media and supra-national corporate intelligence agents. Charlottesville may well be due to the total incompetence of the democratic governor and mayor. ..."
"... On the other hand, the razing of Confederate Memorials started in democrat controlled New Orleans and immediately spread to Baltimore. This is purposeful like blaming Russia for losing the 2016 election. ..."
"... The unrest here at home is due to the forever wars, outsourcing jobs, tax cuts for the wealthy and austerity. Under stress societies revert to their old beliefs and myths. John Brennon, Lindsey Graham, John McCain, George Soros and Pierre Omidyar are scorpions; they can't help themselves. After regime change was forced on Iraq, Libya, Syria and Ukraine; a color revolution has been ignited here in the USA; damn the consequences. We are the only ones that can stop it by pointing out what is really happening. ..."
"... What I see in my Democrat dominated county is that the blue collar folks are noting this overt coup attempt and while they didn't vote for Trump are beginning to become sympathetic towards him. I sense this is in part due to the massive mistrust of the MSM and the political establishment who are viewed as completely self-serving. ..."
"... I read a transcript of the entirety of Trump's news conference upon which CBS and others are basing their claims that Trump is "defending white supremacists," and at no point did he come within hand grenade distance of doing anything of the sort. What he did do is accuse the left wing group of being at fault along with the right wing group in causing the violence, and he did not even claim that they were equally at fault. ..."
"... There is no doubt whatever that his statement was entirely accurate, if in no other respect in that the left's decision to engage in proximate confrontation was certain to cause violence and was, in fact, designed to do so regardless of who threw the first punch. CBS and other media of its caliber are completely avoiding mentioning that aspect of the confrontation. ..."
"... CBS et. al. have been touting the left's possession of not one but two permits for public assembly, but they carefully do not point out that the permits were for two areas well removed from the area where the conflict occurred, and that they did not have a permit to assemble in that area. ..."
"... The media is flailing with the horror of Trump's advocacy of racial division, but it is the Democratic Party which has for more than a decade pursued the policy of "identity politics," and the media which has prated endlessly about "who will get the black vote" or "how Hispanics will vote" in every election. ..."
"... As a firm believer in the media efforts to sabotage Trump and a former supporter (now agnostic, trending negative - Goldman Sachs swamp creatures in the Oval Office????), he greatly disappointed me. First, i will state, that I do not believe Trump is antisemitic (no antisemite will surround himself with rich Jewish Bankers). ..."
"... It doesn't matter whether Trump is getting a raw deal or not. Politics has nothing to do with fairness. ..."
"... But when you've lost Bob Corker, and even Newt Gingrich is getting wobbly, when Fox News is having a hard time finding Republicans willing to go on and defend Trump, you don't need to be Nostradamus to see what's going to happen. ..."
Aug 20, 2017 | turcopolier.typepad.com

doug , 17 August 2017 at 04:54 PM

The media, and political elite, pile on is precisely what I expect. The chattering political classes have converged on the belief that Trump is not only incompetent, but dangerous. And his few allies are increasingly uncertain of their future.

The thrust appears to be to undercut components of his base while ratcheting up indignation. WaPo and the Times dribble out salacious "news" stories that, often as not, are substance free but written in a hyperbolic style that assumes a kind of intrinsic Trump guilt and leaps from there. They know better. No doubt they rationalize this as meeting kind with kind. Trump is the epitome of the salesman that believes he can sell anything to anyone with the right pitch. Reporters that might normally be restrained by actual facts and a degree of fairness simply are no longer so constrained.

It reminds me of the coverage in the run up to Nixon's resignation. Except this one's on steroids. I believe the DC folks fully expect Trump to be removed and now are focusing on the strategy that accrues the maximum benefit to their party. Unfortunately, things strongly favor the Democrats.

Democrats want to drag this out as long as possible and enjoy the chipping away at segments of the Republican base while the Republicans want to clear the path before the midterms. However, the Republican officials, much as many or most can't stand Trump, have to weave a thin line because taking action against Trump would kill them in the primaries and possibly in the general.

So the Democrats are licking their chops and hoping this can continue until the midterms with the expectation they will then control Congress. After that they will happily dispatch Trump with some discovered impeachable crime. At that point it won't be hard to get enough Republicans to go along.

The Republicans can only hope to convince Trump to resign well prior to the midterms. They hope they won't have to go on record with a vote and get nailed in the elections.

In the meantime the country is going to go through hell.

turcopolier , 17 August 2017 at 05:19 PM
kerim,

Yes, we are staring into the depths and the abyss has begun to take note of us. BTW the US was put back together after the CW/WBS on the basis of an understanding that the Confederates would accept the situation and the North would not interfere with their cultural rituals.

There was a general amnesty for former Confederates in the 1870s and a number of them became US senators, Consuls General overseas and state governors.

That period of attempted reconciliation has now ended. Who can imagine the "Gone With the Win" Pulitzer and Best Picture of the Year now? pl

Tyler , 17 August 2017 at 05:30 PM
Some of you still don't get it. Trump isn't our last chance. Its your last chance. Yet still so many of you oxygen thieves still insist RUSSIA is the reason Hillary lost. You guys are going to agitate your way into a CW because you can't accept you lost. Many of you agitating are fat, slow, and stupid, with no idea how to survive.
Murali -> LeeG... , 17 August 2017 at 05:38 PM
I totally disagree with you LeeG. From day one after the unexpected (for the punditry class and their media coherts) elections results everybody was piling on Trump. The stories abound about his Russia Collusion (after one year of investigation not even a smoke signal) or his narcistic attitudes (mind you LeeG Trump always addresses people as We where as Humble Obama always addresses in the first person).

I get this feeling the Swamp doesn't want a President who will at least try to do something for the American people rather than promises (Remember Hope and Change ala Obama, he got the Change quite a bit of it for him and his Banker Pals from what is left of the treasury and we the people are left with Hope). I hope he will succeed but I learnt that we will always be left with Hope!

AK -> Dr.Puck... , 17 August 2017 at 06:27 PM
Dr. Puck,

The calls have begun:

That last tweet is from the Green Party candidate for VP. Those are just a few examples from a quick Google search before I get back to work. Those of you with more disposable time will surely find more.

BillWade , 17 August 2017 at 06:47 PM
Someone on the last thread said in a very elegant way that what binds us Americans together is one thing, economic opportunity for all. I believe that was Trump's election platform, with the "for all" emphasized frequently.

I believe Charlottsville was a staged catalyst to bring about Trump's downfall, there seems now to be a "full-court press" against him. If he survives this latest attempt, I'll be both surprised and in awe of his political skills. If he doesn't survive I'll (and many others, no matter the "legality of the process") will consider it a coup d'etat and start to think of a different way to prepare for the future.

A.I.Schmelzer , 17 August 2017 at 07:20 PM
There is quite the precedent for the media treating trump as they do, Putin has been treated quite similarly, as well as any other politician the media cars disagree with [neocons/neolibs]...

I think, during the election campaign, the negative media coverage may have well be a boon to him. Anyone who listened to the media, and then actually turned up at a Trump rally to see for himself, immediately got the idea that the media is full of shit. I think this won Trump a fair number of converts.

But I think by now they are just over the top. It almost reminds me of Soviet denunciations of old communists who have fallen out of favor.

As far as statue removal goes: There should be legal ways of deciding such things democratically. There should also be the possibility of relocating the statues in question. I imagine that there should be plenty of private properties who are willing to host these statues on their land. This should be quite soundly protected by the US constitution.

That these monuments got, iirc, erected long after the war is nothing unusual. Same is true for monuments to the white army, of which there are now a couple in Russia.

As far as the civil war goes, my sympathies lie with the Union, I would not be, more then a 100 years after the war, be averse to monuments depicting the common Confederate Soldier.

I can understand the statue toppler somewhat. If someone would place a Bandera statue in my surroundings, I would try to wreck it. I may be willing to tolerate a Petljura statue, probably a also Wrangel or Denikin statue, but not a Vlassov or Shuskevich statue. Imho Lees "wickedness", historically speaking, simply isn't anything extraordinary.

Haralambos -> turcopolier ... , 17 August 2017 at 07:29 PM
Col., thank you for this comment. I grew up in the "North" and recall the centenary of the Civil War as featured in _Life_ magazine. I was fascinated by the history, the uniforms and the composition of the various armies as well as their arms. I would add to that the devastating use of grapeshot. I knew the biographies of the various generals on both sides and their relative effectiveness. I would urge others to read Faulkner's _Intruder in the Dust_ to gain some understanding of the Reconstruction and carpetbagging.

I believe the choice to remove the monument as opposed to some other measure, such as the bit of history you offer, was highly incendiary. I also find it interesting that the ACLU is taking up their case in regard to free-speech: http://tinyurl.com/ybdkrcaz

I was living in Chicago when the Skokie protest occurred.

Fred -> Lars... , 17 August 2017 at 07:36 PM
Lars,

"They came to Charlottesville to do harm. They came armed and were looking for a fight."

I agree. This means Governor McAuliffe failed in his duty to the people of the Commonwealth and so did the Mayor of Charlottesville and the senior members of the police forces present in the city. Congradulations to the alt-left.

They - the left - previously came to DC to do harm - on flag day no less. Namely the Bernie Bro James Hodgkinson, domestic terrorist, who attempted to assasinate Steve Scalise and a number of other elected representatives. The left did not denounce him nor his cause. Sadly they did not even denounce the people who actually betrayed him - those who rigged the Democratic primary: Donna Brazile and Debbie Wasserman-Schultz.

Seamus Padraig -> Dr.Puck... , 17 August 2017 at 07:40 PM
"I know of no call by anybody to remove all statues of the slaveholders. Please edify."

Well, it appears that Al Sharpton is now in favor of defunding the Jefferson Memorial. That's close, isn't it? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gg4XKIX1bs4&feature=youtu.be&t=5

VietnamVet , 17 August 2017 at 08:32 PM
PT

The one clear thing is that there is a coup attempt to get rid of Donald Trump led by globalist media and supra-national corporate intelligence agents. Charlottesville may well be due to the total incompetence of the democratic governor and mayor.

On the other hand, the razing of Confederate Memorials started in democrat controlled New Orleans and immediately spread to Baltimore. This is purposeful like blaming Russia for losing the 2016 election.

The protestors on both divides were organized and spoiling for a fight.

The unrest here at home is due to the forever wars, outsourcing jobs, tax cuts for the wealthy and austerity. Under stress societies revert to their old beliefs and myths. John Brennon, Lindsey Graham, John McCain, George Soros and Pierre Omidyar are scorpions; they can't help themselves. After regime change was forced on Iraq, Libya, Syria and Ukraine; a color revolution has been ignited here in the USA; damn the consequences. We are the only ones that can stop it by pointing out what is really happening.

James , 17 August 2017 at 09:32 PM
It seems to me that this brouhaha may work in Trump's favor. The more different things they accuse Trump of (without evidence), the more diluted their message becomes.

I think the Borg's collective hysteria can be explained by the "unite the right" theme of the Charlottesville Rally. A lot of Trump supporters are very angry, and if they start marching next to people who are carrying signs that blame "the Jews" for America's problems, then anti-Zionist (or even outright anti-Semitic) thinking might start to go mainstream. The Borg would do well to work to address the Trump supporters legitimate grievances. There are a number of different ways that things might get very ugly if they don't. Unfortunately the establishment just wants to heap abuse on the Trump supporters and I think that approach is myopic.

Jack , 17 August 2017 at 09:56 PM
There will always be an outrage du jour for the NeverTrumpers. The Jake Tapper, Rachel Maddow, Morning Joe & Mika ain't gonna quit. And it seems it's ratings gold for them. Of course McCain and his office wife and the rest of the establishment crew also have to come out to ring the obligatory bell and say how awful Trump's tweet was.

What I see in my Democrat dominated county is that the blue collar folks are noting this overt coup attempt and while they didn't vote for Trump are beginning to become sympathetic towards him. I sense this is in part due to the massive mistrust of the MSM and the political establishment who are viewed as completely self-serving.

Cvillereader -> turcopolier ... , 17 August 2017 at 10:17 PM
It is illegal in the Commonwealth of Virginia to wear a mask that covers one's face in most public settings.

LEOs in Central Va encountered this exact requirement when a man in a motorcycle helmet entered a Walmart on Rt 29 in 2012. Several customers reported him to 911 because they believed him to being acting suspiciously. He was detained in Albemarle County and was eventually submitted for mental health evaluation.

This is not a law that Charlottesville police would be unfamiliar with.

luxetveritas , 17 August 2017 at 10:45 PM
Chomsky: "As for Antifa, it's a minuscule fringe of the Left, just as its predecessors were. "It's a major gift to the Right, including the militant Right, who are exuberant."

"what they do is often wrong in principle – like blocking talks – and [the movement] is generally self-destructive."

"When confrontation shifts to the arena of violence, it's the toughest and most brutal who win – and we know who that is. That's quite apart from the opportunity costs – the loss of the opportunity for education, organizing, and serious and constructive activism."

Bill H , 18 August 2017 at 02:02 AM
I read a transcript of the entirety of Trump's news conference upon which CBS and others are basing their claims that Trump is "defending white supremacists," and at no point did he come within hand grenade distance of doing anything of the sort. What he did do is accuse the left wing group of being at fault along with the right wing group in causing the violence, and he did not even claim that they were equally at fault.

There is no doubt whatever that his statement was entirely accurate, if in no other respect in that the left's decision to engage in proximate confrontation was certain to cause violence and was, in fact, designed to do so regardless of who threw the first punch. CBS and other media of its caliber are completely avoiding mentioning that aspect of the confrontation.

CBS et. al. have been touting the left's possession of not one but two permits for public assembly, but they carefully do not point out that the permits were for two areas well removed from the area where the conflict occurred, and that they did not have a permit to assemble in that area. A pundit on CBS claimed that "if they went" to the park in question, which of course they did, "they would not have been arrested because it was a public park." He failed to mention that large groups still are required to have a permit to assemble in a public park.

The media is flailing with the horror of Trump's advocacy of racial division, but it is the Democratic Party which has for more than a decade pursued the policy of "identity politics," and the media which has prated endlessly about "who will get the black vote" or "how Hispanics will vote" in every election.

Old Microbiologist -> Lars... , 18 August 2017 at 03:53 AM
Lars, but they came with a legal permit to protest and knew what they would be facing. The anti-protestors including ANTIFA had a large number of people being paid to be there and funded by Soros and were there illegally. The same mechanisms were in place to ramp up protests like in Ferguson which were violent and this response was no different.

However, the Virginia Governor a crony of the Clintons, ordered a police stand down and no effort was made to separate the groups. I remind you also that open carry is legal in Virginia.

So, IMHO this was deliberately set up for a lethal confrontation by the people on the left. I will also remind you that the American Nazi Party and the American Communist Party among others, are perfectly legal in the US as is the KKK. Believing and saying what you want, no matter how offensive, is legal under the First Amendment. Actively discriminating against someone is not legal but speech is. Say what you want but that is the Constitution.

AK -> Richardstevenhack ... , 18 August 2017 at 04:02 AM
Richardstevenshack,

Your last paragraph is a suitably Leftist post-modern ideological oversimplification of an infinitely complex phenomenon. It also reveals a great deal of what motivates the SJW Left:

" As for the notion that this is a 'cultural issue', I quote: 'Whenever I hear the word culture, I reach for my revolver.' 'Culture' is the means by which some people oppress others. It's much like 'civilization' or 'ethics' or 'morality' - a tool to beat people over the head who have something you want. "

First, it is a cultural issue. It's an issue between people who accept this culture as a necessary but flawed, yet incrementally improvable structure for carrying out a relatively peaceful existence among one another, and those whose grudging, bitter misanthropy has led them to the conclusion that the whole thing isn't fair (i.e. easy) so fuck it, burn it all down. In no uncertain terms, this is the ethos driving the radical Left.

Second, I don't know exactly which culture created you, but I'm fairly sure it was a western liberal democracy, as I'm fairly certain is the case with almost all Leftists these days, regardless of how radical. And I'm also fairly certain the culture you decry is the western liberal democratic culture in its current iterations. But before you or anyone else lights the fuse on that, remember that the very culture you want to burn down because it's so loathsome, that's the thing that gave you that shiny device you use to connect with the world, it's the thing that taught you how to articulate your thoughts into written and spoken word, so that you could then go out and bitch about it, and it even lets you bitch about it, freely and with no consequences. This "civilization" is the thing that gives rise to the "morals" and "ethics" that allow you to take your shiny gadgets to a coffee shop, where the barista makes your favorite beverage, instead of simply smashing you over the head and taking your shiny gadgets because he wants them. These principles didn't arise out of thin air, and neither did you, me, or anyone else. This culture is an agreed-upon game that most of us play to ensure we stand a chance at getting though this with as little suffering as possible. It's not perfect, but it works better than anything else I've seen in history.

Old Microbiologist -> FourthAndLong... , 18 August 2017 at 04:12 AM
Not as significant but along a similar trend to re-write history is this pastor asking Chicago mayor Emmanuel to rename parks named for Presidents because they were also slave owners. http://legalinsurrection.com/2017/08/inevitable-chicago-pastor-demands-washington-name-be-removed-from-park-because-of-slavery-ties/
AK -> Tyler... , 18 August 2017 at 04:33 AM
In his inimitable fashion, I'll grant Tyler (and the Colonel, as well) the creditable foresight to call this one. Those of you who find yourselves wishing, hoping, agitating, and activisting for an overturn of the election result, and/or of traditional American culture in general would do well to take their warnings seriously.

If traditional American culture is so deeply and irredeemably corrupt, I must ask, what's your alternative? And how do you mean to install it? I would at least like to know that. Regardless of your answer to question one, if your answer to question two is "revolution", well then you and anyone else on that wagon better be prepared to suffer, and to increase many fold the overall quotient of human suffering in the world. Because that's what it will take.

You want your revolution, but you also want your Wi-Fi to keep working.
You want your revolution, but you also want your hybrid car.
You want your revolution, but you also want your safe spaces, such as your bed when you sleep at night.

If you think you can manage all that by way of shouting down, race baiting, character assassinating, and social shaming, without bearing the great burden of suffering that all revolutions entail, you have bitter days ahead. And there are literally millions of Americans who will oppose you along the way. And unlike the kulaks when the Bolsheviks rode into town, they see you coming and they're ready for you. And if you insist on taking it as far as you can, it won't be pretty, and it won't be cinematic. Just a lot of tragedy for everyone involved. But one side will win, and my guess is it'll be the guys like Tyler. It's not my desire or aim to see any of that happen. It's just how I see things falling out on their current trajectory.

The situation calls to mind a quote from a black radical, spoken-word group from Harlem who were around in the early to mid 60s, called the Last Poets. The line goes, "Speak not of revolution until you are willing to eat rats to survive." Just something to think about when you advocate burning it all down.

johnklis56@gmail.com -> rick... , 18 August 2017 at 07:19 AM
Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe (D) has added his name to a growing list of public officials in state governments encouraging the removal of Confederate statues and memorials throughout the South. Late in the day on Wednesday McAuliffe released an official statement saying monuments of Confederate leaders have now become "flashpoints for hatred, division and violence" in a reference to the weekend of violence which shook Charlottesville as white nationalists rallied against the city's planned removal of a Robert E. Lee statue. McAuliffe further described the monuments as "a barrier to progress" and appealed to state and local governments to take action. The governor said:

As we attempt to heal and learn from the tragic events in Charlottesville, I encourage Virginia's localities and the General Assembly – which are vested with the legal authority – to take down these monuments and relocate them to museums or more appropriate settings. I hope we can all now agree that these symbols are a barrier to progress, inclusion and equality in Virginia and, while the decision may not be mine to make...

It seems the push for monument removal is now picking up steam, with cities like Baltimore simply deciding to act briskly while claiming anti-racism and concern for public safety. Of course, the irony in all this is that the White nationalist and supremacist groups which showed up in force at Charlottesville and which are even now planning a major protest in Lexington, Kentucky, are actually themselves likely hastening the removal of these monuments through their repugnant racial ideology, symbols, and flags.

Bishop James Dukes, a pastor at Liberation Christian Center located on Chicago's south side, is demanding that the city of Chicago re-dedicate two parks in the area that are named after former presidents George Washington and Andrew Jackson. His reasons? Dukes says that monuments honoring men who owned slaves have no place in the black community, even if those men once led the free world.

Just a few I've seen....

James F , 18 August 2017 at 07:29 AM
Salve, Publius. Thanks for the article. Col. Lang made an excellent point in the comments' section that the Confederate memorials represent the reconciliation between the North and the South. The same argument is presented in a lengthier fashion in this morning's TAC http://www.theamericanconservative.com/articles/when-confederate-monuments-represent-reconciliation/ . That reconciliation could have been handled much better, i.e. without endorsing Jim Crow. I wish more monuments were erected to commemorate Longstreet and Cleburne, JB Hood and Hardee. I wish there was more Lee and less Forrest. Nonetheless, the important historical point is that a national reconciliation occurred. Removing the statues is a symbolic act which undoes the national reconciliation. The past which is being erased is not the Civil War but the civil peace which followed it. That is tragic.
Ishmael Zechariah -> Dr.Puck... , 18 August 2017 at 08:14 AM
Dr. Puck,
Do you agree w/ this elected representative's statement: ""I hope Trump is assassinated!" Missouri state Sen. Maria Chappelle-Nadal, D-University City, wrote during a morning Facebook exchange, referring to Republican President Donald Trump."
http://www.stltoday.com/news/local/govt-and-politics/chappelle-nadal-posts-deletes-facebook-post-hoping-for-trump-s/article_406059d6-1aa4-52fc-89ee-2a6a69baaf2e.html
Ishmael Zechariah
Kooshy -> Richardstevenhack ... , 18 August 2017 at 09:21 AM
IMO, most of the problems majority of people (specially the ruling class) have with Donald Trump' presidency is that, he acts and is an accidental president, Ironically, everybody including, him, possibly you, and me who voted for him knows this and is not willing to take his presidency serious and act as such. IMO, he happens to run for president, when the country, due to setbacks and defeat on multiple choice wars, as well as national economic misfortunes and misshapes, including mass negligence of working class, was in dismay and a big social divide, as of the result, majority decided to vote for some one outside of familiar cemented in DC ruling class knowing he is not qualified and is a BS artist. IMO that is what took place, which at the end of the day, ends of to be same.
Croesus -> doug... , 18 August 2017 at 09:52 AM
Netanyahu is under pressure for failing to speak out forcefully against Trump

https://www.cbsnews.com/news/benjamin-netanyahu-resists-calls-to-denounce-trumps-response-to-charlottesville/

Bibi has keen political skills. He hasn't lasted this long based on his mastery of judo.

Fred -> James F... , 18 August 2017 at 10:03 AM
James F,

" Removing the statues is a symbolic act which undoes the national reconciliation."

That is the intent. The coalition of urban and coastal ethnic populists and economic elites has been for increased concentration and expansion of federal power at the expense of the states, especially the Southern states, for generations. This wave of agitprop with NGO and MSM backing is intended to undo the constitutional election and return the left to power at the federal level.

TV , 18 August 2017 at 10:18 AM
I agree with most of Trump's policy positions, but he is negating these positions with his out-of-control mouth and tweets.
As much as I have nothing but contempt and loathing for the "establishment" (Dems, Republicans, especially the media, the "intelligence" community and the rest of the permanent government), Trump doesn't seem to comprehend that he can't get anything done without taming some of these elements, all of whom are SERIOUSLY opposed to him as a threat to their sinecures and riches.
"Who is this OUTSIDER to come in and think that he in charge of OUR government?"
blowback , 18 August 2017 at 10:33 AM
What seems like a balanced eyewitness account of Charlottesville that suggests that although the radicals on both sides brought the violence, it was the police who allowed it to happen.

https://newrepublic.com/article/144365/cops-dropped-ball-charlottesville

The need to keep protesters away from counter-protesters particular when both are tooled should be obvious to anyone, but not so with the protest in Charlottevlle.

doug -> Tyler... , 18 August 2017 at 10:40 AM
-"Trump isnt our last chance. Its your last chance."

Reminds me of the 60's and the SDS and their ilk. A large part of the under 30 crowd idolized Mao's Little Red Book and convinced themselves the "revolution" was imminent. So many times I heard the phrase "Up Against the Wall, MFs." Stupid fools. Back then people found each other by "teach-ins" and the so called "underground press." In those days it took a larger fraction to be able to blow in each other's ear and convince themselves they were the future "vanguard."

These days, with the internet, it is far easier for a smaller fraction to gravitate to an echo chamber, reinforce group think, and believe their numbers are much larger than what, in reality, exists. This happens across the board. It's a rabbit hole Tyler. Don't go down it.

turcopolier , 18 August 2017 at 10:45 AM
Booby

Yes, Forts Bragg, Hood, Lee, AP Hill, Benning, etc., started as temporary camps during WW1 and were so named to encourage Southern participation in the war. The South had been reluctant about the Spanish War. Wade Hampton, governor of SC said of that war, "Let the North fight. the South knows the cost of war." pl

ISL , 18 August 2017 at 10:53 AM
I would like to share my viewpoint. As a firm believer in the media efforts to sabotage Trump and a former supporter (now agnostic, trending negative - Goldman Sachs swamp creatures in the Oval Office????), he greatly disappointed me. First, i will state, that I do not believe Trump is antisemitic (no antisemite will surround himself with rich Jewish Bankers).

But violence on all sides is absolute BS. Nazi violence gets its own sentence and language at least as strong as the language he has no trouble hitting ISIS with. Didn't hear that. So I guess in his mind, the threat the US faced from Nazis during WW2 was less than a ragtag, 3rd world guerilla force whose only successes are because of 1. US, Saudi, and other weapons, and their war on unstable third world countries. Give me a break - did he never watch a John Wayne movie as a kid?

When I discuss nazi's, F-bombs are dropped. I support the right of nazi's to march and spew their vitriolic hatred, and even more strongly support the right of free speech to counter their filth with facts and arguments and history.

I am sorry, but Antifa was not fighting against the US in WW2. If one wants to critique Antifa, or another group, that criticism belongs in a separate paragraph or better in another press conference. Taking 2 days to do so, and then walking it back, is the hallmark of a political idiot (or a billionaire who listens to no one and lives in his own mental echo chamber).

If Trump gets his info and opinions from TV news, despite having the $80+ billion US Intel system at his beck and call, he is the largest idiot on the planet.

sid_finster , 18 August 2017 at 11:29 AM
It doesn't matter whether Trump is getting a raw deal or not. Politics has nothing to do with fairness.

But when you've lost Bob Corker, and even Newt Gingrich is getting wobbly, when Fox News is having a hard time finding Republicans willing to go on and defend Trump, you don't need to be Nostradamus to see what's going to happen.

[Aug 20, 2017] As Russia-Gate Story Stalls, Cue Trump Neo-Nazi Scandal by Finian Cunningham

Notable quotes:
"... Former CIA chief John Brennan said Trump's comments on racial violence were a "national security risk". ..."
"... The enthusiasm for whipping up the new anti-Trump campaign seems due in large part because the erstwhile Russia-gate story has patently failed to gain any traction. For nearly seven months since Trump's inauguration, the relentless claims pushed by Democrats, the media and anonymous intelligence sources that his election last November was enabled by Russian interference have shown little impact in terms of discrediting Trump and ultimately forcing him out of the White House. The Russia-gate theme has failed in its soft coup objective. ..."
"... It is relevant that Wikileaks editor Julian Assange has consistently denied US intelligence and media claims that his source was Russian hackers. Also, former British ambassador Craig Murray has confirmed that he knows the identity of the source for Wikileaks and that, as the dissenting veteran US intelligence people have assessed, the information was leaked, not hacked. ..."
"... In sum, the Russia-gate story that the US Deep State and media have peddled non-stop for seven months is on its knees gasping for lack of credibility. ..."
"... Not only that, but now technical details and expert analysis are emerging from credible former US intelligence personnel who are verifying that the Russia-gate story is indeed a hoax. ..."
"... The imminent death of the Russia-gate "scandal" is giving way to the next orchestrated campaign to oust Trump in the form of allegations that the president is a "Neo-Nazi sympathizer". ..."
Aug 20, 2017 | www.informationclearinghouse.info

August 18, 2017 " Information Clearing House " - The political opponents of President Trump have found a new lever for sabotaging his presidency – his alleged embrace of white supremacists and Neo-Nazis. He is now being labelled a "sympathizer" of fascists and bringing America's international image into disrepute. Cue the impeachment proceedings.

Notably, the same power-nexus that opposed Trump from the very outset of his presidency is vociferously condemning his alleged racist leanings. Pro-Democrat media like the Washington Post, New York Times and CNN can't give enough coverage to Trump "the racist", while the intelligence community and Pentagon have also weighed in to rebuke the president. Former CIA chief John Brennan said Trump's comments on racial violence were a "national security risk".

This is not meant to minimize the ugliness of the various Neo-Nazi fringe groups that have lately rallied across Southern US states. Trump's wrongheaded remarks which appeared to lay equal blame on anti-fascist protesters for deadly violence last weekend in Charlottesville, Virginia, were deplorable.

However, the concerted, massive media campaign to nail Trump as some kind of new Fuhrer seems way over the top. The media frenzy smacks of Deep State opponents scouring for a handy new pretext for ousting him from office.

The enthusiasm for whipping up the new anti-Trump campaign seems due in large part because the erstwhile Russia-gate story has patently failed to gain any traction. For nearly seven months since Trump's inauguration, the relentless claims pushed by Democrats, the media and anonymous intelligence sources that his election last November was enabled by Russian interference have shown little impact in terms of discrediting Trump and ultimately forcing him out of the White House. The Russia-gate theme has failed in its soft coup objective.

Back in January, on the eve of Trump's inauguration, the US intelligence agencies claimed that Russia had interfered in the presidential election with the aim of promoting Trump's victory over Democrat rival Hillary Clinton. But seven months on, no evidence has ever been produced to support that sensational claim.

Despite this absence of "killer evidence" to damage Trump as a Russian stooge, the Congress continues to hold investigations into the vapid allegations. And, separately, a "special prosecutor" – former FBI chief Robert Mueller – continues to expand his investigation, forming a grand jury and this week opening enquiries into White House staff.

Thus the whole Russia-gate affair is in danger of becoming a giant farce from the lack of evidence. With so little to show for their herculean efforts to trap Trump as a "Russian patsy", his political opponents, including prominent media organizations, are at risk of being seen as ridiculous hoaxers.

A telltale sign of how bankrupt the Russia-gate story is was the publication of a lengthy article in Wired earlier this month. The California-based online magazine proclaims to be a cutting-edge technology publication. Wired is published by Condé Nast, a global American company, whose other prestige titles include Vogue, Vanity Fair and New Yorker . With a claimed monthly readership of 30 million, and an editorial staff of over 80, Wired is supposed to be a global leader in new technology and communications.

According to its advertising blurb, "Wired is where tomorrow is realized", adding: "It is the essential source of information and ideas that make sense of a world in constant transformation".

Therefore, as a US technology forum, this publication is supposed to be the elite in insider information and "nerdy journalism". With these high claims in mind, we then turn excitedly to its article published on August 8 with the headline: "A guide to Russia's high tech tool box for subverting US democracy".

On reading it, the entire article is a marathon in hackneyed cliches of Russophobia. It is an appalling demonstration of how threadbare are the claims of Russian hacking into the US election last year. Citing US intelligence sources, the Wired article is a regurgitation of unsubstantiated assertions that Russian state agencies hacked into the Democratic National Committee last July and subsequently used whistleblower site Wikileaks to disseminate damaging information against Trump's rival Hillary Clinton.

"According to US investigators", says Wired, "the hack of the DNC's servers was apparently the work of two separate Russian teams, one from the GRU [military intelligence] and one from the FSB [state security service], neither of which appears to have known the other was also rooting around in the Democratic Party's files. From there, the plundered files were laundered through online leak sites like WikiLeaks and DCLeaks Their impact on the 2016 election was sizable, yielding months of damaging headlines".

Nowhere in the Wired article is any plausible technical detail presented to back up the hacking claims. It relies on US intelligence "assessments" and embellishment with quotes from think tanks and anonymous diplomats whose anti-Russia bias is transparent.

Wired's so-called Russian "tool box for subverting US democracy" covers much more than the alleged hacking into the DNC. It accuses Russia of using news media, diplomats, criminal underworld networks, blackmail and assassinations as an arsenal of hybrid warfare to undermine Western democracy.

Wired declares: "And they are self-reinforcing, because in Russia the intelligence apparatus, business community, organized crime groups, and media distribution networks blend together, blurring and erasing the line between public and private-sector initiatives and creating one amorphous state-controlled enterprise to advance the personal goals of Vladimir Putin and his allies".

This is an astoundingly sweeping depiction of Russia in the most slanderous, pejorative terms. Basically, Wired is claiming that the entire Russian state is a criminal enterprise. The Russophobia expressed in the article is breathtaking – and this is in a magazine that is supposed to be a leader in technology-intelligence.

Wired tells its readers of Russia having a "Grand Strategy" – to undermine Western democracies, and multilateral alliances from NATO to the European Union.

With foreboding, it warns: "[T]he Putin regime's systematic effort to undermine and destabilize democracies has become the subject of urgent focus in the West the biggest challenge to the Western order since the fall of the Berlin Wall".

The salient point here is that despite its grandiose professional claims, Wired provides nothing of substance to support the narrative that Russia hacked into the US election. If a supposed cutting-edge technology magazine can't deliver on technical details, then that really does demonstrate just how bankrupt the whole Russia-gate story is.

Moreover, another nail in the coffin for the Russia-gate narrative was recently provided by a respected group of former US intelligence officers called Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity (VIPS). Last month, the group wrote to President Trump with their expert analysis that the DNC incident was not a hack conducted via the internet, but rather that the information came from a DNC insider. In other words, the information was a leak, not a hack, in which the data was transferred by person out of the DNC offices on a memory disk. In that case, Russian agents or any other internet agents could not have possibly been involved. The key finding in the VIPS analysis is that the information obtained from the DNC computers was so vast in file size, it could not have been downloaded over the internet in the time period indicated by meta-data.

It is relevant that Wikileaks editor Julian Assange has consistently denied US intelligence and media claims that his source was Russian hackers. Also, former British ambassador Craig Murray has confirmed that he knows the identity of the source for Wikileaks and that, as the dissenting veteran US intelligence people have assessed, the information was leaked, not hacked.

In sum, the Russia-gate story that the US Deep State and media have peddled non-stop for seven months is on its knees gasping for lack of credibility.

Even a supposed top technology publication, Wired, is embarrassingly vacant of any details on how alleged Russian hackers are supposed to have interfered in the US election to get Trump into the White House. As if to compensate for its dearth of detail, the Wired publication pads out its "big story" with hackneyed Russophobia worthy of a corny James Bond knock-off.

Not only that, but now technical details and expert analysis are emerging from credible former US intelligence personnel who are verifying that the Russia-gate story is indeed a hoax.

The Deep State and other political/media opponents of Trump are inevitably scrabbling for alternative means of sabotaging his presidency. They are finding that the Russia-gate ploy to get Trump out of the White House is in danger of collapsing from lack of evidence and from the emergence of a plausible explanation for the DNC breach that damaged Clinton's election campaign. The bottomline is: it wasn't the Russians, so all the hype about Trump being a Russian stooge is a case of fake news, just as Trump has long maintained.

The imminent death of the Russia-gate "scandal" is giving way to the next orchestrated campaign to oust Trump in the form of allegations that the president is a "Neo-Nazi sympathizer". Trump's nationalistic America First views may be suspect, even reprehensible in their wider association. That's not the point. The point is the concerted, orchestrated way that the Deep State will rail-road the new campaign to oust Trump in place of the failing Russia-gate ploy. The contempt for democratic process raises the question of who the more dangerous American fascists are?

Finian Cunningham has written extensively on international affairs, with articles published in several languages. He is a Master's graduate in Agricultural Chemistry and worked as a scientific editor for the Royal Society of Chemistry, Cambridge, England, before pursuing a career in newspaper journalism. He is also a musician and songwriter. For nearly 20 years, he worked as an editor and writer in major news media organisations, including The Mirror, Irish Times and Independent.

This article was first published by Strategic Culture Foundation

The views expressed in this article are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Information Clearing House.

[Aug 20, 2017] Ship Rudderless After Trump Drops Its Pilot

Notable quotes:
"... Trump making more and more room for neocons, deepstate, warmongers with these completely irrational moves kicking out he's closest friends and advisors! Now MSM, deepstate will be even stronger, I wouldnt be surpised if Trump step down himself eventually and hand over the presidency to Pence, either that or Trump will more and more tone done his views, policy and go along what msm/deep state wants. ..."
"... These moves clearly show how isolated he really is ..."
"... We could throw away that improvement of Russia/US relationsship, we will see more Nato supporting Trump, more wars and covert ops. in the middle east and elsehwere. Very tragic and bad situation. ..."
"... The US has a military junta in control These are people Trump picked - they were not imposed on him. The people that got Trump elected out lived there usefulness ..."
"... If Bannon turns out to be smarter than I credit him for, things could become interesting. Mainly with strong Bernistas on the other side (they may think they are polar opposite, but they are basically calling for the same thing – no more wars, jobs, education, etc). ..."
"... The war we feared Clinton would bring is now on the horizon. Apparently it was only delayed, not prevented. ..."
"... So what is going on here? Trump in order to physically survive had to dig up allies in the senior military who had the guns, frankly, to keep him in office. The ouster of Bannon may be a "good" thing if we understand that the chief attribute of Washington since Obama was elected for his second term was the power struggle between various gangs within the power-elite exhibited by Ash Carter's mutiny against the Kerry-Lavrov agreement on Syria almost a year ago. So the power struggle appears to have been simplified. The permanent war state is once again in the driver's seat now we'll see where they choose to go. ..."
"... Bannon engineered the ascent of Rex Tillerson at State despite the fact that Tillerson's patron and chief influence is non-other than Condoleezza Rice, the neocon former Bush NSA Director and cheerleader for the Iraq war. Documents which leaked from the Presidential transition proved that Rice was Tillerson's advocate and that several other staffers she recommended where quickly hired at State. Perhaps this is why Politico correctly tabbed the rise of veteran Romney-ites at State. The Trump State Department has failed to excise the Soros control of a number of U.S. embassies and is currently leaning on the Hungarian government not to impede Soros toppling of that democratically elected government. Bannon delivered the Trump State Department into the hands of the Globalists. ..."
"... Trump getting swallowed up and neutered by the Washington establishment makes a complete mockery of anyone who made the asinine claim of a populist lone hero walking into office and 'draining the swamp'. ..."
"... A presidential administration requires years, even decades, to build up the people and relationships that are needed to hit the ground running on day one. The mass of experienced people who can act as the foundations of the new administration. ..."
"... With Trump getting elected by the unique combination of traditional populism and the Democratic part establishment thinking they had enough power to ram a complete piece of shit candidate like Hillary Clinton down the country's throat have managed to put someone in office who completely lacks the tools to effectively operate an administration. ..."
"... Obama deliberately lied to us in 2008, it was all a con. I know this because the instant he was elected, he fired all his liberal economic advisors and brought in Goldman Sachs. I know this because of reports that during his campaign his agents were privately telling his wealthy patrons that he didn't mean a word of it. ..."
"... Trumps started his presidency like he really meant to do what he promised during the campaign. THEN, after enormous pressure, even he started to bend. The inflection point was the missile strike on Syria. Now he's just sailing on, being president, and the promises of the campaign are like the promises of a car salesman... ..."
"... The 2nd bad mistake was H-ikki Haley. - Internationally. Trump had much potential support that was destroyed by this woman. He burned SO many bridges.. ..."
"... Bannon was probably the only non warmonger in the whole Tronald team - including the boss. Although I strongly oppose everything else he believes in his political course would have been much healthier for the rest of the world. ..."
"... Bannon's removal opens wide the door to neo-cons, war mongers and the pro-jewish lobbies that only think of "making america great" through wars. The neo-cons are much more right-wing than Bannon. Without Bannon, Trump is becoming another puppet just like Bush jr. We will come to regret the last anti-Israel voice in the White House. ..."
"... This article totally ignores his position on China. Like the Bush adminstration had planned to destroy 7 countries (Iraq, Syria, Lebanon, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Iran), Bannon said: "We're going to war in the South China Sea in five to 10 years," "There's no doubt about that. They're taking their sandbars and making basically stationary aircraft carriers and putting missiles on those. They come here to the United States in front of our face - and you understand how important face is - and say it's an ancient territorial sea." ..."
"... Trump's troubles are phoney (Russia, statues) but Trump hasn't been effective in countering them - sometimes shooting himself in the foot (suggesting that he had tapes of Comey; drip-drip-drip of the Trump Jr meeting with Russians; etc) ..."
"... I call him the Republican Obama. Apologists and critics of Trump won't dont like this view. ..."
"... if i thought exxon, goldman sachs, lockheed martin and all these corps that have a huge say on the direction of the usa today, had any other clue then their 'bottom line' or recognized at the whole game is in jeopardy of being lost, i doubt any of them would have the guts or character to say anything about it.. it is not only that the usa is rudderless at this point.. the whole planet looks in much the same point, especially the usa poodles, which would include canada, the country i live in.. no naomi klein book or anything is going to change it either.. ..."
"... firing Bannon mean getting rid of people that think like Trump, so this is quite bad because instead comes pure neocons filling up the WH, and then Trump will be very isolated with his ideas on detente and so on. ..."
"... I highly suggest MoA barflys read Pepe Escobar's analysis of Bannon's departure, https://sputniknews.com/columnists/201708191056603401-steve-bannon-white-house-trump-war/ ..."
"... Obama was heavily backed by the billionaire Pritzker family. One of them was put in charge of the treasury. One of them is a gender-bender, once a he, now a she. Hence the gender wars. Ever feel you've been had? ..."
Aug 20, 2017 | www.moonofalabama.org
" The Trump presidency that we fought for, and won, is over ," Bannon said Friday, shortly after confirming his departure. "We still have a huge movement, and we will make something of this Trump presidency. But that presidency is over."

Bannon was the "Make America Great Again" guy in the White House. The strategist who had the populist ideas that brought the votes for Trump. Jobs, jobs, jobs, infrastructure investments, immigration limits, taxing globalists were his issue.


Dropping the pilot - Punch 1890

Trump is no young German Emperor and Bannon is no chancellor Bismark. (Both would probably have liked those roles.) But with Bannon leaving, the Trump presidency is losing its chief strategist, the one person which set priorities and could set an alternative course for the ship of state under Trump's command.

The racist Huffington Post headline implies that Bannon prioritized the wrong country.

Cont. reading: Ship Rudderless After Trump Drops Its Pilot

Anon | Aug 19, 2017 4:44:19 AM | 1

Good post,

Trump making more and more room for neocons, deepstate, warmongers with these completely irrational moves kicking out he's closest friends and advisors!
Now MSM, deepstate will be even stronger, I wouldnt be surpised if Trump step down himself eventually and hand over the presidency to Pence, either that or Trump will more and more tone done his views, policy and go along what msm/deep state wants.

These moves clearly show how isolated he really is , he could have been strong instead he backs off ASAP it seems.

We could throw away that improvement of Russia/US relationsship, we will see more Nato supporting Trump, more wars and covert ops. in the middle east and elsehwere. Very tragic and bad situation.

Alexander Grimsmo | Aug 19, 2017 5:03:43 AM | 2
Trump hitting Syria with those missiles was the final nail in the coffin for any hope in the Trump regime. This just confirms it.
Realist | Aug 19, 2017 5:13:45 AM | 3
Trump proves you don't have t be smart to be rich. Trump has the IQ of a corn dog. He is surrounding himself with Deep State assholes....his days are numbered.
James lake | Aug 19, 2017 5:18:08 AM | 4
The US has a military junta in control These are people Trump picked - they were not imposed on him. The people that got Trump elected out lived there usefulness

Now we will see more war - arms to Ukraine and escalation in Syria and against Iran and North Korea. The American public have really been led by the nose as they will see all this as a good thing.

Lea | Aug 19, 2017 5:33:52 AM | 5
I doubt that it will help Trump to implement what Bannon and Trump himself intended to do.

It won't. These globalists, Goldman Sachs lobbyists and MIC/Pentagon vultures are too firmly entrenched in the immediate vicinity of the Oval office to be uprooted that easily. On the other hand, the anti-war, America-First, get-the jobs-back Trump voters can be made into a whole frigging mass movement which could multiply peaceful protest actions and, as they say, " rock the boat ".

It would take brains and planning, but it can be done.

If Bannon turns out to be smarter than I credit him for, things could become interesting. Mainly with strong Bernistas on the other side (they may think they are polar opposite, but they are basically calling for the same thing – no more wars, jobs, education, etc).

From The Hague | Aug 19, 2017 5:55:29 AM | 6
The dismissal of Flynn was the first grave error.
Perimtr | Aug 19, 2017 5:58:28 AM | 7
The war we feared Clinton would bring is now on the horizon. Apparently it was only delayed, not prevented.
Mina | Aug 19, 2017 6:06:58 AM | 8
I wouldn't mind to see Pence taking over at some stage. The two real faces of the White power in the US for everyone in the world to contemplate. Might get their lackeys sober. Let the Titanic drowns to the bottom so the rest of the world can breathe.
charlie | Aug 19, 2017 6:07:14 AM | 9
american zionist war criminal clowns.
somebody | Aug 19, 2017 6:18:02 AM | 10
Staying with the caricature you show, b., Trump will start a war. Yeah, Bannon talked of infrastructure. Hitler built the Autobahn and got rid of unemployment, one way or the other, "economic nationalism" is a relabeling of fascism.

Quoting Likhachev via Putin

Putin recalled the words of outstanding Soviet Russian scholar Dmitry Likhachev that patriotism drastically differs from nationalism.

"Nationalism is hatred of other peoples, while patriotism is love for your motherland," Putin cited his words.

Duh.

somebody | Aug 19, 2017 6:36:08 AM | 11
add to 10

This here is what Trump's presidency has been about right from the start - a capitalist raid on government. Bannon's role has been - and looking at Breitbart still is - to sell Trump to the stupid little people.

ashley albanese | Aug 19, 2017 7:06:24 AM | 12
At school in Australia in the 1960's our regular theme was the inevitability of 'hegemonic ' struggle . I noticed it vanished as a theme from history and social studies, 70's onwards.

Used to think it was deliberately done to subconsciously underline the newness and completeness of the Anglo/ American empire . A product here to stay ! The old forces of struggle - of victory and defeat no longer patterns at play .

Anon | Aug 19, 2017 7:42:53 AM | 13
somebody

Ridiculous! You are using Hitler fallacy blasting Trump, Bannon, their policies, why dont you go to CNN instead and comment? Whiny Trump, Bannon is nazis, fascist is the liberal propaganda fake-news, meanwhile in the real world:

Steve Bannon : white nationalists, neo-Nazis 'losers' and 'a collection of clowns'
http://businessinsider.com/steve-bannon-white-nationalists-neo-nazis-losers-clowns-2017-8?r=US&IR=T

And you talk about "stupid people"?

Banger | Aug 19, 2017 8:07:25 AM | 14
Great analysis. This internal power struggle is not over. Yes, the generals are now in charge as I once predicted long ago when we first started seeing the decline in the polls at all levels of the state except for two major institutions: 1) the military; and 2) the police. The logical conclusion was that, eventually, these institutions would hold most of the political power since they are the most popular.

It's fascinating how martinets who continually lose wars are still considered "heroes" (thank you for your service). So what is going on here? Trump in order to physically survive had to dig up allies in the senior military who had the guns, frankly, to keep him in office. The ouster of Bannon may be a "good" thing if we understand that the chief attribute of Washington since Obama was elected for his second term was the power struggle between various gangs within the power-elite exhibited by Ash Carter's mutiny against the Kerry-Lavrov agreement on Syria almost a year ago. So the power struggle appears to have been simplified. The permanent war state is once again in the driver's seat now we'll see where they choose to go.

Rahul Varshney | Aug 19, 2017 8:33:29 AM | 15
Bannon didn't help things by backing Tillerson.
Bannon engineered the ascent of Rex Tillerson at State despite the fact that Tillerson's patron and chief influence is non-other than Condoleezza Rice, the neocon former Bush NSA Director and cheerleader for the Iraq war. Documents which leaked from the Presidential transition proved that Rice was Tillerson's advocate and that several other staffers she recommended where quickly hired at State. Perhaps this is why Politico correctly tabbed the rise of veteran Romney-ites at State. The Trump State Department has failed to excise the Soros control of a number of U.S. embassies and is currently leaning on the Hungarian government not to impede Soros toppling of that democratically elected government. Bannon delivered the Trump State Department into the hands of the Globalists.

Bannon's Time Is Up decent analysis by Roger Stone.

Recommend people follow twitter.com/ezilidanto. Trump has already re-instated Clinton's people to continue the UN occupation of Haiti. Trump is getting blindsided when all he needs to do is up his twitter game and ignore the lame stream bilderberg media.

Vannok | Aug 19, 2017 8:36:24 AM | 16
Trump getting swallowed up and neutered by the Washington establishment makes a complete mockery of anyone who made the asinine claim of a populist lone hero walking into office and 'draining the swamp'.

A presidential administration requires years, even decades, to build up the people and relationships that are needed to hit the ground running on day one. The mass of experienced people who can act as the foundations of the new administration.

With Trump getting elected by the unique combination of traditional populism and the Democratic part establishment thinking they had enough power to ram a complete piece of shit candidate like Hillary Clinton down the country's throat have managed to put someone in office who completely lacks the tools to effectively operate an administration.

Trump has been effectively reduced to a who might as well just be sitting in the Oval Office jerking off to porn and watching to cat videos.

It is also laughable to see people crying about the country stumbling into a 'civil war'. The Trump base is a bunch of clowns who still believe they won a presidential election with 'meme magic'.

Their 'god emperor' has become the ultimate 'cuck' and they have nothing in response other than crying in their echo chamber forums about how they are 'winning'.

librul | Aug 19, 2017 9:06:01 AM | 17
" liberals are loving it."

Not all liberals are loving it.

The avoidance of war, was always this liberals priority.

TG | Aug 19, 2017 9:20:13 AM | 18
Excellent post.

I have always thought that Obama was a con artist, and Trump, a salesman.

Obama deliberately lied to us in 2008, it was all a con. I know this because the instant he was elected, he fired all his liberal economic advisors and brought in Goldman Sachs. I know this because of reports that during his campaign his agents were privately telling his wealthy patrons that he didn't mean a word of it.

Trump, however, is a salesman. He will simply tell you what you want to hear at the moment to close the deal. 'Oh yeah, that model car is great, no the seats in the other model are exactly the same..." just making it up on the fly, trying to read the customer. A salesman probably doesn't really think of it as lying. And when the deal is made, they won't deliberately stab you in the back - they just maybe won't be too concerned if it doesn't work out quite like they said.

Trumps started his presidency like he really meant to do what he promised during the campaign. THEN, after enormous pressure, even he started to bend. The inflection point was the missile strike on Syria. Now he's just sailing on, being president, and the promises of the campaign are like the promises of a car salesman...

steven t johnson | Aug 19, 2017 9:20:29 AM | 19
Trump lost the vote. If it weren't for the moronic Electoral College crap Trump wouldn't be president. So when Bannon tries to posture as the genius who won the presidency for Trump, Trump knows better. Everyone who talks about Trump winning the election is lying. Trump knows this, because that's the bottom line. Trump doesn't need a loser for an adviser. It's Trump who may now create a significant fascist movement by his support. It is not Bannon who will bring the fascist masses to Trump, because the masses aren't fascist.

As for delusions about Trump's non-imperialist foreign policy? The man ran as a conqueror, not a peacemaker. Trump is an owner. The US economy relies on the dollar and the dollar is backed by blood. Its role is not commensurate with the US' real economy, much less gold. The Soviets could give up their alleged empire because it wasn't an empire, it was an expense. The owners of the US rely on their empire. They can't give it up and they don't want to. Trump is one of them. He's about trashing old politics. Nazis in Charlottesville is the new politics, but he doesn't need Bannon for that.

Anon | Aug 19, 2017 9:38:26 AM | 20
"Trump is nazi"
"Bannon is nazi"
"Trump is a fascist"
"Bannon is a fascist"

Tragic that even people here buying the fake-news liberal propaganda. Nazi? Facists? Come on please. No wonder world is a mess or rather a brainwashed mass.

Noirette | Aug 19, 2017 9:38:51 AM | 21
Trump would not have been elected without him. -Bannon. b's top post.

Wondered about this, probably correct... though Trump, DT - Bannon are a sort of meeting of the minds so who what? etc. DT did veer pragmatically away from Bannon-type core positions on 'Muslims', in the infamous Clash of Civilzations line, as DT relegated religion to the lower drawer, to use violence as a no. 1. criteria - "ISIS", "terrorism", etc. (Campaign.)

DT clarioned the obvious, MAGA was for all Amrikis - LGTB, muslim, black, anyone, etc. That is why he won! (Bannon would of course have understood this.) On Iran DT has also been a little more 'tempered' imho but who knows really, e.g.:

http://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-trump-iran-idUSKBN19Y226

http://www.haaretz.com/opinion/.premium-1.780140

I posted about Trump's VP pick at the time saying it was a terrible sign. Response, he had to pick a Rep. estab. figure. NO. That was his first capitulation that led to all the others and those to come. And it will be his downfall. He could have picked a nonenity, anybody really, a woman would have been ~+ (not S. Palin, that type or top Rep. F figures at the time), a young man of Hispanic origin, someone sympathetic with stage presence, etc. Why not, Bannon himself? The bold move would have been to offer it publically to B. Sanders as a challenge.

DT is from the biz world and his intuitions about 'breaking molds' are constrained by the profit motive, which operate in a regulated field, he does not understand politics where 'anything goes.'

The 2nd bad mistake was H-ikki Haley. - Internationally. Trump had much potential support that was destroyed by this woman. He burned SO many bridges..

somebody | Aug 19, 2017 9:53:06 AM | 22
20

It is a fascist road map. Weimar street fights - check. "Wenn das der Führer wüsste"- problems are the people around the leader, not the leader himself. The leader is a saint. - check. "We will have to crash them" ie the Röhm mob who did the street fights - check. Infrastructure projects against unemployment, no matter the conditions of forced labor - check. "Buy German" - check. War against economic competitors - check. Find an interior race to unite against - Jews, Black lives matter - check

Defeat .....

Hoarsewhisperer | Aug 19, 2017 10:00:51 AM | 23

If Bannon is going back to Breitbart then I'm very confident that The Swamp will soon be in deep do-do. He can disrupt their schemes, smear them 24/7, and make them look stupider, from Breitbart, than he ever could have done from inside the White House.

Bannon knows that the Swamp believes ALL of it's own bullshit. With Bannon pointing it out, it won't be long before everyone on Earth knows too.

somebody | Aug 19, 2017 10:39:24 AM | 31
add to 29 Steve Bannon and taxes
The White House is also getting support for its tax-cut plan from the political network of billionaire brothers Charles Koch and David Koch, who didn't support President Donald Trump during his 2016 campaign. Short and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin are set to appear on a tax panel hosted by two Koch-funded groups Monday in Washington.

And this is Robert Mercer

Since the IRS found in 2010 that a complicated banking method used by Renaissance and about 10 other hedge funds was a tax-avoidance scheme, Mercer has gotten increasingly active in politics. According to data from the Center for Responsive Politics, he doled out more than $22 million to outside conservative groups seeking to influence last year's elections, while advocating the abolition of the IRS and much of the federal government.

Richard Painter, chief White House ethics adviser under President George W. Bush, said the optics surrounding the Mercers' political connections and the IRS case "are terrible."

"The guy's got a big case in front of the IRS," said Painter, now a University of Minnesota law professor who is also vice chairman of Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington. "He's trying to put someone in there who's going to drop the case. Is the president of the United States going to succumb to that or is he not?"

"Are we going to have a commissioner of the IRS who aggressively enforces the law and takes good cases to Tax Court or (somebody who) just throws away tax cases so billionaires don't have to pay their taxes and the rest of us can pay more taxes?"

The Real News - The real story of how Trump and Bannon got to the White House

nobody | Aug 19, 2017 10:42:24 AM | 32
You recognize you are in the middle of a psychological war yet do not act accordingly.

The "two sides" in this war shoot their weapons in the direction of the "other side" but the aim is strictly at the boobs in the middle. You should know this but yet you insist on being the boob in the middle.

Why is that?

Printing is pretty cheap these days. Pamphlets work wonders. Go forth and publish. While you still can.

fastfreddy | Aug 19, 2017 11:24:34 AM | 34
The US is a fascist nation. By degrees it became increasingly fascist. The key element of fascism is collusion between government and big business. This collusion does not serve the common citizen.
somebody | Aug 19, 2017 11:25:41 AM | 35
33

What I did say was - if you dress like a Nazi, if you shout Nazi slogans, if you act like Nazis did, if your political programme is that of Nazis, there is a strong likelihood that you are a Nazi.

Of course there is a cultural difference, these US billionaire backers of potential mass movements are after a " disruptive " tax and regulation free oligarchy, competitive advantage plus the profits of war, whilst German (and US) industrialists of the time were after an authoritarian corporate state, competitive advantage and the profits of war.

The difference between industrialists who depend on a work force and money made by speculation.

What Bannon is selling to the little people is the protection of an authoritarian corporate state.

AriusArmenian | Aug 19, 2017 11:43:35 AM | 36
The neocon and neolib warmongers are in full control. The US now marches in one direction: WAR. Millions (billions?) more will suffer more death and destruction. The US and its Anglosphere and EU vassals are nothing but vile and despicable. All my remaining hope is in the Eastern powers standing strong.
From The Hague | Aug 19, 2017 11:44:02 AM | 37
talk is cheap
nobody | Aug 19, 2017 11:48:32 AM | 38
"What I did say was - if you dress like a Nazi, if you shout Nazi slogans, if you act like Nazis did, if your political programme is that of Nazis, there is a strong likelihood that you are a Nazi."

"programme" << Not in the American tongue.

Anon is a boob. There is hope for Anon yet.

You are a dissimulator and a propaganda agent. (Per your own if it walks like a duck ...)

Anon | Aug 19, 2017 11:55:15 AM | 39
somebody

Nobody reject that there are nazis, I disclaim your attempt to claim that majority of voters for Trump are fascists/nazis.

As for Bannon, I already posted this: Steve Bannon : white nationalists, neo-Nazis 'losers' and 'a collection of clowns'
http://businessinsider.com/steve-bannon-white-nationalists-neo-nazis-losers-clowns-2017-8?r=US&IR=T

That is Bannon himself ok? If you want to deny what he is saying and claim otherwhise, well go ahead, it will then be another fake-news claim.

Pnyx | Aug 19, 2017 12:23:08 PM | 40
Bannon was probably the only non warmonger in the whole Tronald team - including the boss. Although I strongly oppose everything else he believes in his political course would have been much healthier for the rest of the world.
Robert Beal | Aug 19, 2017 12:23:13 PM | 41
The deep state and Wall Street have long run the ship, and now Big Oil's hand is on the rudder. The personality/reality show cast changes but always diverts attention; i.e., grabs eyeballs for the mainstream media.
Yul | Aug 19, 2017 12:36:23 PM | 42
The Hypocrites wrt Charlottesville: http://mondoweiss.net/2017/08/charlottesville-empowered-children/
james | Aug 19, 2017 1:01:13 PM | 43
thanks b.. the usa situation looks increasingly disturbing... not sure what happens next.. trump at this point looks very weak and not in control..
john | Aug 19, 2017 1:25:54 PM | 44
Pnyx says:

Bannon was probably the only non war mongerer in the whole Tronald team

well, there you have it! the guy's gotta go!

virgile | Aug 19, 2017 1:34:02 PM | 45
Bannon's removal opens wide the door to neo-cons, war mongers and the pro-jewish lobbies that only think of "making america great" through wars. The neo-cons are much more right-wing than Bannon. Without Bannon, Trump is becoming another puppet just like Bush jr. We will come to regret the last anti-Israel voice in the White House.
Piotr Berman | Aug 19, 2017 1:39:43 PM | 46
trump at this point looks very weak and not in control..

Posted by: james | Aug 19, 2017 1:01:13 PM | 43

That makes an assumption that Trump has some goals, program or whatever. I always had serious doubt, because he never showed some coherent program. Trump does not really think in terms of abstract ideas, but in terms of people that he knows. Bannon is a favorite of a billionaire lady that has an apartment in Trump Tower and who bankrolled recent Bannon's project. Who knows, with Rebeccah Mercer as a president, USA would have more coherent policies? But Trump hobnobbed with a lot of "good people" and his views seemed to be some incoherent mishmash.

Not that coherence is always a virtue. Probably all his acquaintances believed that "Obamacare" was a terrible idea, and none of them had any notion how to "fix it", so Trump probably projected a consensus "get rid of it, and if you can, replace it with something marvelous". And we all know that getting a "bipartisan consensus" in Congress, with 98-2 vote, requires some profoundly stupid legislation. And dinosaurs of American foreign policy may be pretty consistent.

Bannon was just another loudmouth for hire as far as Trump is concerned, something that he himself did for a living when casinos etc. were less rewarding. Trump is good at repeating stuff heard from acquaintances, but apart of letting the compatriots bask in his greateness, I am not sure if he really wants something.

xor | Aug 19, 2017 1:46:37 PM | 47
What I miss in this Bannon praise is a clear picture on how the globalist neolibcons got rid of Trump's key strategist. What I see is sanctification of Bannon, a far right ghoul who used his power and influence to move the political zenit further to the right.

This article totally ignores his position on China. Like the Bush adminstration had planned to destroy 7 countries (Iraq, Syria, Lebanon, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Iran), Bannon said: "We're going to war in the South China Sea in five to 10 years," "There's no doubt about that. They're taking their sandbars and making basically stationary aircraft carriers and putting missiles on those. They come here to the United States in front of our face - and you understand how important face is - and say it's an ancient territorial sea."

Let's hope the rudderless ship hits an iceberg and sinks to the bottom of the sea.

Seamus Padraig | Aug 19, 2017 2:22:42 PM | 48
It's sad to see all the defeatism here at MoA right now. Look, I too wish Trump hadn't fired Bannon -- or Flynn. And I wish he hadn't fired missiles at Syria or signed the new sanction bill. But consider this: a mere month after firing those missiles (apparently, after warning the Russians and Syrians in advance so they had time evacuate their troops), Trump agreed to the deconfliction zones in Syria, and then a month after that, he ordered the CIA to pull the plug on their jihadi freak-show there. Two weeks ago, all my liberal friends (yes, I still have some, but it's getting harder and harder to reason with them) over his tweets on N. Korea. And then what happened? Nothing!

Trump is well south of a hundred percent, I grant; but he's definitely more than zero.

As far as Bannon is concerned: please don't fall for the MSM propaganda about Bannon having been 'Trump's brain'. No. If you'll recall, Bannon only joined Trump's campaign toward the end, in August of 2016. And yet Trump never changed his fundamental policies or campaign strategy at all. Détente with Russia was NOT Bannon's idea; it was Trump's from the start. Dropping 'régime change' in Syria was NOT Bannon's idea; it was Trump's all along.

So have some faith, people. The worst has still not happened. There's a chance -- just a chance -- that we may still avoid a nuclear war.

Mina | Aug 19, 2017 2:42:47 PM | 49
OT curious to read Noirette's insiders' jokes on Bluenext and Kyoto ? (+ the Turkish bank) ref to http://tempsreel.nouvelobs.com/justice/20170529.OBS9978/gregory-zaoui-cerveau-ou-second-couteau-de-l-escroquerie-du-siecle.html
Vannok | Aug 19, 2017 2:50:47 PM | 50
The US Regime has just attacked the SAA fighting on the frontline against IS:

US Regime Attack

Stick a fork in Trump. He's done.

Jackrabbit | Aug 19, 2017 3:03:18 PM | 51
Trump's troubles are phoney (Russia, statues) but Trump hasn't been effective in countering them - sometimes shooting himself in the foot (suggesting that he had tapes of Comey; drip-drip-drip of the Trump Jr meeting with Russians; etc)

His response to Charlottesville is a case in point: he didn't explain what each group had done wrong so his "many mistakes on all sides" was read as a reluctance to denounce right-wing hate groups, then he flip-flopped (denounced white supremists) and flip-flopped again (returned to his earlier position) after out-cry from the right. I call him the Republican Obama. Apologists and critics of Trump won't dont like this view.

james | Aug 19, 2017 3:05:40 PM | 52
@46 piotr... i hear what you are saying.. trump is in it for trump... the guy is all about what corporations are about - branding, logo, etc. etc.. trump inc. and making money... as i was saying to a friend earlier today, if everything is about money - the bottom line of so many - when these folks no longer have a planet, there ain't gonna be no bottom line to look after either...

if i thought exxon, goldman sachs, lockheed martin and all these corps that have a huge say on the direction of the usa today, had any other clue then their 'bottom line' or recognized at the whole game is in jeopardy of being lost, i doubt any of them would have the guts or character to say anything about it.. it is not only that the usa is rudderless at this point.. the whole planet looks in much the same point, especially the usa poodles, which would include canada, the country i live in.. no naomi klein book or anything is going to change it either..

if correct, and i haven't read the link @50 vannok post is further confirmation of it..

Anon | Aug 19, 2017 3:13:30 PM | 53
Seamus Padraig 48

Great points, although if I could add - firing Bannon mean getting rid of people that think like Trump, so this is quite bad because instead comes pure neocons filling up the WH, and then Trump will be very isolated with his ideas on detente and so on.

somebody | Aug 19, 2017 3:21:38 PM | 54
39

I never said Trump voters were Nazis, they were anti-Hillary. Including the non-voters.

Bannon on "clowns" see

"We will have to crash them" ie the Röhm mob who did the street fights - check.

It is a fascist road map
See " Roehm putsch - night of the long knives "

He is dissociating from the Nazis in a left wing publication, why do you think that is? Because his Nazi friends have become toxic but don't read left wing publications. He did not say that in Breitbart.

Now what does Breitbart say: "CNN normalizes Antifa - Leftists seek peace through violence".

Now, again, who was violent in Charlottesville? What do the videos show?

It is obvious that Mercer/Bannon did not split with Trump. Bannon is now firing up the base whilst Trump does what he has to do to satisfy his billionaire friends ie get rid of regulations and taxes.

Whilst Bannon pretends Trump is hostage to Republican elites that have to be removed by his base.

Bannons "War with China" is not non interventionist.

Bannon is a paid tool.

Those Nazis have been filmed from all sides and are being identified online, losing their jobs because of it.
I suggest people send them Bannon's interview in the American Prospect.

StephenLaudig | Aug 19, 2017 3:32:08 PM | 55
The came to mind. Even gets the orange correct but it is misplaced....
......

http://hhgproject.org/entries/president.html

President of the Imperial Galactic Government

The President is very much a figurehead - he wields no real power whatsoever. He is apparently chosen by the government, but the qualities he is required to display are not those of leadership but those of finely judged outrage. For this reason the President is always a controversial choice, always an infuriating but fascinating character. His job is not to wield power but to draw attention away from it.

An orange sash is what the President of the Galaxy traditionally wears.

On those criteria Zaphod Beeblebrox is one of the most successful Presidents the Galaxy has ever had. He spent two of his ten Presidential years in prison for fraud. Very very few people realize that the President and the Government have virtually no power at all, and of these very few people only six know whence ultimate political power is wielded. Most of the others secretly believe that the ultimate decision-making process is handled by a computer. They couldn't be more wrong.
============

cheers.

Krollchem | Aug 19, 2017 3:45:38 PM | 56
For those interlopers who claim Hillery won and that the Electoral college is evil consider the following:

http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-08-18/us-has-35-million-more-registered-voters-live-adults-red-flag-electoral-fraud

Anon | Aug 19, 2017 3:50:28 PM | 57
somebody

You spread so much lies and fake news.

1. "I never said Trump voters were Nazis, they were anti-Hillary. Including the non-voters."
No they voted because of his economic policy.

2. "He is dissociating from the Nazis in a left wing publication, why do you think that is? Because his Nazi friends have become toxic but don't read left wing publications. He did not say that in Breitbart."
Lol you are making up stupid conspiracy theories, he said something about Charlottesville because he was asked to obviously.
You cant accept what Bannon is saying you are making up things in your head. If you cant accept reality, what matter is our discussion? But keep those conspiracy theories coming because those are novel.

3. "Now what does Breitbart say: "CNN normalizes Antifa - Leftists seek peace through violence".
Now, again, who was violent in Charlottesville? What do the videos show?"

Yes they sure do, the videos show violence on both sides, apparently you and CNN see the world in such bad/good sides. You have become blind by the liberal MSM apparently.
As far as violence in europe,

Europol: Leftists Carried Out 27 Times More Terror Attacks Than Right-Wingers
- https://twitter.com/prisonplanet/status/877535259952328704

You believe Antifa is some kind of peace loving party. Next time they might get a lunatic behind the wheel.

karlof1 | Aug 19, 2017 4:05:13 PM | 58
I highly suggest MoA barflys read Pepe Escobar's analysis of Bannon's departure, https://sputniknews.com/columnists/201708191056603401-steve-bannon-white-house-trump-war/

On other threads, the need for solidarity's been raised by myself and others. I believe what I'll call the Hate Resistance or Anti-Hate forces could provide the foundation for the required rise of a Progressive-Populist Movement, https://www.commondreams.org/news/2017/08/19/alt-right-gathers-boston-thousands-counter-rally-fight-supremacy Now, I understand that those with the money behind these counter protests are anything but Progressive or want to see Populism rise; however, the required solidarity's been generated, so all that's needed is for Direction to be supplied for a bottom->up Movement to grow and become a new political force that could even tap into some of the issues Bannon will certainly raise.

okie farmer | Aug 19, 2017 4:19:56 PM | 59
Night of the Long Knives
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Jump to: navigation, search
For other uses, see Night of the Long Knives (disambiguation).
Night of the Long Knives

Ernst Röhm (right) with Kurt Daluege
and Heinrich Himmler
Native name
Unternehmen Kolibri
Duration
June 30 – July 2, 1934
Location: Nazi Germany

Also known as
Operation Hummingbird, Röhm Putsch (by the Nazis), The Blood Purge

Type: Coup d'état and purge

Cause: Conflicts between Strasserist and Hitler
Organised by

Adolf Hitler
Joseph Goebbels
Heinrich Himmler
Reinhard Heydrich

Participants
Schutzstaffel (Hitler faction)
Sturmabteilung (Röhm faction)
Unorganized regime opposition
Outcome
Adolf Hitler's supremacy confirmed
Elimination of opposition to the Nazi Government
Casualties
85 officially and upwards to 150–200 total

The Night of the Long Knives (German: Nacht der langen Messer (help·info)), also called Operation Hummingbird (German: Unternehmen Kolibri) or, in Germany, the Röhm Putsch[a] (German spelling: Röhm-Putsch), was a purge that took place in Nazi Germany from June 30 to July 2, 1934, when the Nazi regime carried out a series of political extrajudicial executions intended to consolidate Hitler's absolute hold on power in Germany. Many of those killed were leaders of the SA (Sturmabteilung), the Nazis' own paramilitary Brownshirts organization; the best-known victim was Ernst Röhm, the SA's leader and one of Hitler's longtime supporters and allies.

Leading members of the left-wing Strasserist faction of the Nazi Party (NSDAP), along with its figurehead, Gregor Strasser, were also killed, as were establishment conservatives and anti-Nazis (such as former Chancellor Kurt von Schleicher and Bavarian politician Gustav Ritter von Kahr, who had suppressed Adolf Hitler's Munich Beer Hall Putsch in 1923). The murders of Brownshirt leaders were also intended to improve the image of the Hitler government with a German public that was increasingly critical of thuggish Brownshirt tactics.

smuks | Aug 19, 2017 4:22:09 PM | 60
@somebody 22

The similarities go on and on, it's plain ridiculous, almost embarrassing to even point them out.

Bannon is a dangerous ideologue. I have no idea if Trump himself has any political beliefs, probably not - but he loves and needs popular support. And if he doesn't manage to create 'jobs, jobs, jobs', what will he do?

T. is pretty alone now, that's true. Having no political standpoints, this makes him an easy target for others to drive into a corner and manipulate - and afterwards, they'll say: "Trump is crazy, we told you so, this war was all his fault and his alone!"

Yeah, sure. And of course, the blame for WW2 lies entirely with a few 'crazy Nazis', the German (and international) capital elite had nothing to do with it, they didn't want the Nazis to destroy the Soviet Union, no no...

The parallels are plain ridiculous.

smuks | Aug 19, 2017 4:42:17 PM | 61
@okie farmer 59

Yes, this was the crucial moment: Those Nazis who actually believed their own anti-elite propaganda had to be eliminated, so the rest could serve as a popular figurehead for pro-elite policies. H. had the support of the masses, but what he did served the interest of the '1%' - including the war on Soviet Russia, which they wanted. Of course, afterwards the German money elite had nothing to do with it, it was all done by those 'crazies', and that's what the history books still tell us today...

@StephenLaudig 55

lol, kudos! Last orders, please!

Anon | Aug 19, 2017 4:45:53 PM | 62
smuks and somebody

You consider Trump a nazi/fascists, sure then you you consider Putin a fascist/nazi too?

smuks | Aug 19, 2017 4:49:13 PM | 63
@james 43

"trump at this point looks very weak and not in control.. "

That's exactly what I wrote more than a year ago, and why I didn't want him to be president: He may not be an 'evil person' (I have no idea), but he's weak and prone to doing 'stupid stuff' when in a difficult situation.

I do hope Russia and China understand this, and act accordingly/ offer him a face-saving way out.

smuks | Aug 19, 2017 4:51:14 PM | 64
@Anon 62

re-read my comments, you completely missed the point.

I don't like Putin's policies much, but he's intelligent and responsible.

Just Sayin' | Aug 19, 2017 5:59:31 PM | 66
Trump Continues to Resist Pressure for Afghan Escalation

Pence, McMaster Lead Call for Escalation

Friday's Camp David talks on Afghanistan appear to have ended without a final decision by President Trump on troop levels, as he continues to resist pressure from top cabinet officials to sign off on a massive escalation of the 16-year-old conflict with thousands of fresh troops.

Trump had initially delegated the decision to Defense Secretary James Mattis, but Mattis found a cap limiting his maximum deployment too restrictive.

Now, Vice President Pence and National Security Adviser H.R. McMaster are also taking up the cause of large-scale escalation, pushing Trump to accept the recommendations of the commanders.Pence and McMaster were at the Camp David meeting, but Blackwater founder Erik Prince, who has been pushing a "privatize the war" initiative, was blocked, apparently at the behest of McMaster.

Trump aide Steve Bannon, another skeptic of military escalation, was sacked outright.

What's the purpose of the "escalation"?

Why escalate in Afghanistan?
What has happened recently to require such an escaltion?

(Nothing, as far as I can see)

So why "escalate?

As far as I can see Trump is no longer in charge of any of the several wars the US is currebtly waging. If he ever was in charge in the first place.

As far as I can tell, the purpose of any escalation would simply be: "to escalate". With all the increase in expenditure that such an escalation would naturally require.

Throughout the Obama era troop levels in afghanistan were raised and lowered without any rhyme or reason, with no connection to events on the ground, that I could see.

Nothing has changed in that regard since Tronald took charge.

If anything this confirms Orwell's theory, espoused in his "Theory and Practice of Oligarical Collectivism", that the purpose of war is: "To wage war".

Thus filling the coffers of those who profit from waging war. And more importantly emptying the treasury of funds that could be used to improve living conditions for the proles. Proles of all different skin colours.

Nothing has changed in that regard since the Obama era.

Except: the circus has a new show on, to distract the " stupid little people". Instead of "gender wars" the show at the local theatre changed to "race wars"

But at the end of the day, it's still just a show, just like it was under Obomber, designed to distract.

Bread and Circuses.

Since nothing has changed, claims of Nazism aimed at Trump are nonsense, unless the person making the claim was making the exact same claim regarding
Obama.

Which they weren't

Which brings us back to the "stupid little people"

Just Sayin' | Aug 19, 2017 6:04:15 PM | 67
Btw.

Obama was heavily backed by the billionaire Pritzker family. One of them was put in charge of the treasury. One of them is a gender-bender, once a he, now a she. Hence the gender wars. Ever feel you've been had?

frances | Aug 19, 2017 6:07:55 PM | 68
There are a few assumptions that are driving the Trump is doomed story. The first; he is unthinking, borderline stupid. The second: he is isolated. The third; he has no plan.

I think they are wrong on all counts. I believe he is shrewd, his business dealings show that. He is not isolated as he trusts very few people and relies on his family and only his family. He has few people close to him by choice. Finally he clearly has plans and surrounding himself with military give you a glimpse into his thinking. He has just announced an upgrade to the cyber security agency and it may take over NSA responsibilities.

The Pentagon has long been at war with the CIA/State Dept and the NSA. He is backing the Pentagon and with their help can decimate his and their enemies. As for congress, he has been assembling a war chest and in the 2018 elections will support those who are loyal to him. He will bury the Republicans who failed to come up with a healthcare plan, he will bury the Republicans who failed to support him. He was a leading developer worldwide, dealing with some of the world's biggest business sharks do you seriously think he can't take on Congressional sycophants?

MadMax2 | Aug 19, 2017 6:27:02 PM | 69
The U.S. appears ungovernable at this time, the hysterical temper whipped up on all sides, no reasoned thinking. I guess we're now getting a look at the big show Obama was able to put on for us, when in actual fact things were ungovernable all along - it's just so, so exposed now under Trump. He's being bitten by the people closest to him. Repeatedly.

There would be a way for a country to escape such internal capitulation if there were a visible rule of law, or maybe some code of ethics on show. Rule of the rich should look this way, paying for the pleasure of watching other people watch monkeys to throw shit at one another daily.

JustSayin' | Aug 19, 2017 6:36:31 PM | 70
One more:

Trump is probably best known, amongst the proles, as host of the show "The Apprentice". The premise of this show was that he gathered together a whole bunch of asshats and then one by one fired all of them.

Fast Forward to 2017 and the Trump presidency.

He gathered a whole bunch of asshats around him and one by one fired all of em . . . . .

Say what you like about the man, but at least he's consistent ;-)

Copeland | Aug 19, 2017 6:40:47 PM | 71
Americans who simply ignore President Trump's occasionally hints of brutality ( that police should be even rougher or more brutal in their dealings with criminal suspects), are citizens proceeding at their own peril. President Obama, in his heyday, made public statements, in which he pronounced Army private Bradley (Chelsea) Manning guilty of treason;--a young soldier who had been held in brutal detention in a military stockade,--when no trial had even begun. The law is found to be expedient when it serves political ends, and is otherwise ignored.

In preemptive violence they trust: glorification of abusive power and coersion, and demonization of the Other. It's truly a bi-partisan thing we are seeing: the last links to sanity being removed. No one is sure what the little extra nudge it might be, that could hurl us down into social chaos. Whether Trump proves himself more or less dangerous than Hillary Clinton would have been, simply shrinks into insignificance, compared to the US Congress, and the bi-partisan consensus for irrational global dominance that keeps pushing us toward destruction.

But some liberals have decided that the Day of Antifa is not such a bad thing; meaning we should duke it out in the streets with crazier right wingers, hoping that the contagion of hate will spread throughout the land. Mark Bray, a lecturer at Dartmouth College, is giving the necessity of preemptive violence his academic blessing. With the flood of adrenaline, the blood thickens and grows hot, and eventually spills out on the paving stones and the curb.

On the other hand, the inchoate lunges and political retractions, the firings and shuffling of personnel in the administration, is not at all inspiring. If Trump brings any more generals into the National Security Council, people will have even more reason to worry. Bannon's departure, in and of itself, will probably not change the trajectory that the US government is locked into. Bannon is not the pilot of Trump's soul, nor is he the Mephistopheles whispering into the ear of Trump.

What keeps me awake at night is the knowledge that the only time Congress rallies to Trump, is when they are confident that he is about to start pushing out the borders of the empire, economically strangling small countries,--or better still, when he proves his mettle by bombing and killing folks. Does this president have the grit to resist foolhardy military adventures, or improve diplomatic relations with countries that view the US with alarm, or to put people back to work and rebuild the domestic economy? It's hard to say how.

JustSayin' | Aug 19, 2017 6:43:35 PM | 72
re: #71
Says the guy who back in 2008 was pimping for Obama. telling us all how he represented a change.

Seriously: why would anyone ever listen to anything you have to say about anything?

smuks | Aug 19, 2017 6:43:42 PM | 73
@Anon 65

You seem to be rather cognitively challenged: I don't say Trump's a fascist, I say he 'probably has no political beliefs'. Go watch TV if complex arguments are too much for you.

Putin is no fascist either, but he needs extreme right-wing support so Russian fascists have a certain influence on him imo.

Just Sayin' | Aug 19, 2017 6:47:27 PM | 74
It's hard to say how.

Posted by: Copeland | Aug 19, 2017 6:40:47 PM | 71

even if it were easy, given your track record you'd probably fuck it up anyhow

psychohistorian | Aug 19, 2017 7:13:35 PM | 75
Can Trump do any more to show the rest of the world what a craven puppet the US has become to the God of Mammon folks?

I believe that all this strum and drang are the prelude for war or a major shift in geo-political focus on war as an economic engine of society. The next step in the prelude is either war or economic war, both about maintaining global private finance control or away from that model. The propaganda and fear mongering escalate so that rational discussion of the paths forward are obfuscated and misdirected.

Trump may have dropped a pilot but it is foolish to think that those who have piloted global private finance for centuries have let down their guard.

Copeland | Aug 19, 2017 7:14:55 PM | 76
72, 74

Are you one of those rare infallible gentlemen who never has made a mistake? Why are you making it personal? I can only guess that you are trolling. No one born in this world can pass through it free of error. But I guess you have pardoned yourself, given that you are an exception.

fast freddy | Aug 19, 2017 8:02:19 PM | 77
Rational Thought, reasoned thinking and discussion are not the tools of government, the military, religion or the angry mob.

Bullshit and flinging shit like monkeys offer proven and preferred methodologies.

psychohistorian | Aug 19, 2017 8:21:28 PM | 78
@ fast freddy who didn't credit any with the tool of Rational Thought

Below is a recent quote from Lord Rothschild that you can analyze keeping in mind that his organization reduced its US holdings from 62% to 37% of it portfolio in the past 6 months....
"
The period of monetary accommodation may well be coming to an end. Geopolitical problems remain widespread and are proving increasingly difficult to resolve. We therefore retain a moderate exposure to equity markets and have diversified our asset allocation towards equity investments where value creation is driven by some identifiable catalyst or which are exposed to longer-term positive structural trends.
"
Hey, he is being "upfront" about it........I wonder when the music stops?

Curtis | Aug 19, 2017 8:40:01 PM | 79
StephenLaudig 55
Thanks for the HHG reference. Sometimes we need some comedy to temper our outrage.

Yes, I agree Trump is now surrounded by Goldman Sachs, military types, and pro-Israel Jared. Nothing good can come of this. SecDef Gates resisted the warmongering of Team Obama but ultimately he went along with it. So even if there is some common sense among the generals, that doesn't mean they can prevent another warmongering misadventure. Tillerson has shown some restraint but it's hard to trust anyone in govt anymore.

V. Arnold | Aug 19, 2017 8:50:03 PM | 80
somebody | Aug 19, 2017 10:01:52 AM | 24

Trump would not have been elected without Robert Mercer. Robert Mercer is the billionaire behind Cambridge Analytica, Breitbart and Steve Bannon.

Who financed Adolf Hitler? Bingo! Finally, some one got the Mercers; both the father and the daughter.
http://therealnews.com/t2/story:19811:The-Real-Story-of-How-Bannon-and-Trump-Got-to-The-White-House

fudmier | Aug 19, 2017 9:04:03 PM | 81
We Americans have a problem: the USA is not performing as it should . We Americans have not solved the problem of how to satisfactorily staff a two man team capable to manage the white household, nor have we Americans done any better seating old 100 gents to rule the Senate, worse among us we seem unable to supply 425 jugglers, dancers, and actors the house of dancing confusion needs to sell its show time tickets. This staffing problem is an American problem, not a USA problem. Its time Americans set their minds to solving it.

Its disappointing to see that Trump may have a problem supporting people that pledge their reputations, futures, and positions to help Trump. In business I have seen many persons with this psychological problem, its not about the hired person, its about imperfection : even the slightest non-conforming misstep by the supportive employee is sufficient to bring about a vilification, a firing, and the like. It nows seems possible that the surround sound family in the white house was a defensive move designed to overcome a known-to-Trump problem that probably has plagued Trump his entire life. I put a short-run fantastic performing employee in charge of a significant managerial position; within a year he had fired nearly everyone in the place, some fired had 20 years of relevant experience. Five years later the same person repeated the performance, within a year everyone in the new place had been fired. Later, another person, this time an expert with 20 years experience in a particular line of business was bathed in venture capital and tasked to establish a new business within his expertise; he fired nearly everyone that he hired; some made it a year, but that was it. He ended up trying to run the business all by himself.

Gorgar Tilts | Aug 19, 2017 9:12:09 PM | 82
This will likely only hasten the inevitable: either the liquidation of cucks and neocons as the GOP becomes the implicit party of white nationalism, or the liquidation of the GOP as such at the hand of white nationalists.

The sooner either of these occur, the better it is going to be for the majority white population in the US. Probably for the black and brown populations, too.

smuks | Aug 19, 2017 9:17:51 PM | 83
Is it just me, or is Trump's team becoming more and more reminiscent of the Soviet politburo c. 1986 ?

@psycho 75

In other words, we either overcome capitalism or face war...unless, of course, we miraculously stumble upon the driver of a new Kondratieff. Without completely destroying the planet, that is.

psychohistorian | Aug 19, 2017 9:21:41 PM | 84
@ fudmier who posits that Americans have a problem.

I dare say that the problem Americans have is shared by the rest of the species. Society is stuck in feudal mode at its core with its fealty to the powers of global private finance and those who own it and have for centuries. The model of a few, unaccountable people, perpetuating the God of Mammon religion of private property, inheritance to insure continuation and that some humans are better than others inherently is a sick measure of what we think of as civilization.

All this shit going on is proxy manipulations like have been pursued by the elite for centuries. Humanity needs to lose its private finance pilot and set sail with a commonly piloted future.

psychohistorian | Aug 19, 2017 9:43:34 PM | 85
@ smuks who chimed in

Let me expand my thought.

I think our solution is as simple or complicated as we want to make it.....its all about a collective meme.

I have posited before here that the sewage treatment plants and water systems of the world are not the problem. Those things represent social advances that have been built to support towns and cities by governments.

I posit that government, by definition, is socialistic in purpose....and I further posit that we have forgotten this and/or this definition has been twisted by others. I grew up in Tacoma, Washington and had an uncle who was an engineer for the regional water/power SOCIALIST organization that is still in existence today.

The reason I make that point is that I believe that by "simply" evolving the private finance/property/inheritance component of our form of social organization we will immensely improve the incentives we live by.

We need to kill the God of Mammon. Who believes in this religion? Will humanity evolve past fealty to this god?

Grieved | Aug 19, 2017 10:06:59 PM | 86
@58 karlof1

Thanks for the Escobar link. The story makes great sense. It's good to know about Mercer and to see that Trump and Bannon are tight. Oddly, it did seem that with all the jackals circling around Trump's neck, in this one case, Bannon is more use outside the tent pissing in than inside pissing out. And Breitbart has now received a massive profile lift, it'll become a national player in the narrative, one would expect.

By the way, I was pondering lately this whole aspect of a grass roots movement. Funny you should bring it up. The only question here about the US is, will the people actually get a voice in this society? If the electoral system keeps bringing liars and betraying promises, then it's time to Occupy the Ballot and have new movements. This is happening I think, with Trump actually being one of the precursor litmus tests.

~~

As for the generals, what does a ruler need except the people and the army? Trump has them both. It makes him harder to take down with all those generals around. Of course, Caesar will have to accord with his praetorian guard or the guard will get a new Caesar. But the US is a banana republic now, this is how it's done - and I'm serious about this, these are real dynamics I think.

Surely the generals will end up being more conservative in action than in rhetoric? And if they get a little giddy and actually send their soldiers out into the real world, they'll quickly receive more of those globally public humiliations that are lowering the empire to the ground so effectively. What can go wrong, that couldn't always go wrong anyway, regardless of who's in charge, or thinks they're in charge?

Grieved | Aug 19, 2017 10:14:06 PM | 87
Reflecting that b's post is actually about who's steering the ship.

Personally, I don't know - or give much weight to - whether Trump is driving his own train here. The man shows an extraordinary plasticity, which is useful in the whirlwind that buffets him. He can afford to entertain a million ideas, players and plans. He will outlive them all, I suspect. Despite enormous gaffes, he stays afloat. It's not a Teflon thing, it's a buoyancy thing, or something. Maybe it lies in the country being seen as so crazy and screwed up right now that no one can claim the high ground, and meanwhile he is, after all the elected president, and keeps showing up for work every day as if he's in charge.

I don't see the country as broken, unless the people accept this false narrative concocted by the media about sides split by division. Admittedly, from all the arguing and attacking going on in this thread, one could guess that maybe the false narrative will win.

But we could draw much comfort from the words of this young black woman, Red Pill Black, in a 5 minute YouTube essay that has a quarter million views so far in the last 2 days. She makes stunningly good sense - it's worth 5 minutes or your money back: I Don't Care About Charlottesville, the KKK, or White Supremacy

And I have some respect for the tide of history, and would challenge the notion that anyone was ever really in charge anyway. And this is the great promise that I think Trump still holds. I believe he will bend with the prevailing winds, within his belief system - and there are winds stirring that no one controls, I think. History again. I can't prove it, or even point to it at this stage, but I'm happy enough to wait.

Hoarsewhisperer | Aug 19, 2017 11:05:03 PM | 88
Given that Trump's Inauguration speech included a promise to challenge the abusive power of the Swamp/Deep State, anyone who expected something other than a Magical Mystery Tour, or imagined that he would behave predictably, is utterly clueless about Leadership, Power, and the predictable consequences of "throwing down the gauntlet."
fudmier | Aug 19, 2017 11:48:56 PM | 89
All this shit going on is proxy manipulations like have been pursued by the elite for centuries. Humanity needs to lose its private finance pilot and set sail with a commonly piloted future.

Posted by: psychohistorian | Aug 19, 2017 9:21:41 PM | 84

Ever heard of the enclosure acts ? Do you know which wealthy propaganda artist and lobbyist placed Art. I, Sec. 8, (8) in the US constitution? The Congress shall have the power ...to promote the Progress of Science and useful Arts, by securing for limited Times to Authors and Inventors the exclusive Right to their respective Writings and Discoveries..." ?

Any idea how the patent and copyright clause has been used to force on the people of the world the crime of kill and take, lie and steal everything from whomever capitalism? Imagine the monopoly power the Wall Street Bandits can insert into corporations by raising enough money to enable the corporation to acquire monopoly rights in any & all great ideas [THEY CAN OWN the marketing rights and make the profits from ANYTHING ANYONES MIND CAN THINK UP]that can be reduced to objects than can make money.

MONOPOLY POWER is a requirement of SUCCESSFUL CAPITALISM?

Patents and copyrights produce a great portion of the faults we are all so upset about. Americans have a problem, the USA is not performing satisfactorily because those in charge of the USA respond only to the global capitalist who have sufficient funds to purchase what they USA is selling.

Most Americans cannot afford to buy what the USA is selling?

[Aug 20, 2017] Stick a fork in Trump. He's done.

Aug 20, 2017 | www.moonofalabama.org

Vannok | Aug 19, 2017 2:50:47 PM | 50

The US Regime has just attacked the SAA fighting on the frontline against IS:

US Regime Attack

Stick a fork in Trump. He's done.

[Aug 18, 2017] Stephen Bannon Out at the White House After Turbulent Run

Now whom Trump represents? GS and military industrial complex ?
Aug 18, 2017 | www.msn.com

"White House Chief of Staff John Kelly and Steve Bannon have mutually agreed today would be Steve's last day," the White House press secretary, Sarah Huckabee Sanders, said in a statement. "We are grateful for his service and wish him the best."

... ... ...

On Tuesday at Trump Tower in New York, Mr. Trump refused to guarantee Mr. Bannon's job security but defended him as "not a racist" and "a friend." "We'll see what happens with Mr. Bannon," Mr. Trump said. Mr. Bannon's dismissal followed an Aug. 16 interview he initiated with a writer with whom he had never spoken, with the progressive publication The American Prospect.

In it, Mr. Bannon mockingly played down the American military threat to North Korea as nonsensical: "Until somebody solves the part of the equation that shows me that 10 million people in Seoul don't die in the first 30 minutes from conventional weapons, I don't know what you're talking about, there's no military solution here, they got us." He also bad-mouthed his colleagues in the Trump administration, vowed to oust a diplomat at the State Department and mocked officials as "wetting themselves" over the consequences of radically changing trade policy.

Of the far right, he said, "These guys are a collection of clowns," and he called it a "fringe element" of "losers." "We gotta help crush it," he said in the interview, which people close to Mr. Bannon said he believed was off the record. Privately, several White House officials said that Mr. Bannon appeared to be provoking Mr. Trump and that they did not see how the president could keep him on after the interview was published.

[Aug 18, 2017] Trump betrayed his antiglobalism agenda when he elevated the roles of Gary D. Cohn, his top economic policy adviser and a former official at Goldman Sachs, and Dina Powell, a former Bush administration official who also worked on Wall Street

Notable quotes:
"... Mr. Bannon had been aligned with Mr. Kelly's predecessor, Reince Priebus, who was forced out in late July. More significantly, Mr. Bannon has been in a battle with Jared Kushner, the president's son-in-law and senior adviser, since the spring ..."
"... Mr. Bannon, whose campaign against "globalists" was a hallmark of his tenure steering the right-wing website Breitbart.com, and Mr. Kushner had been allies throughout the transition process and through the beginning of the administration. ..."
"... But their alliance ruptured as Mr. Trump elevated the roles of Gary D. Cohn, his top economic policy adviser and a former official at Goldman Sachs, and Dina Powell, a former Bush administration official who also worked on Wall Street... ..."
Aug 18, 2017 | www.msn.com

"We gotta help crush it," he said in the interview, which people close to Mr. Bannon said he believed was off the record.

Mr. Bannon's departure was long rumored in Washington. The president's new chief of staff, John F. Kelly , a retired Marine Corps general who was brought on for his ability to organize a chaotic staff, was said to have grown weary of the chief strategist's long-running feud with Lt. Gen. H. R. McMaster, the national security adviser.

Mr. Bannon had been aligned with Mr. Kelly's predecessor, Reince Priebus, who was forced out in late July. More significantly, Mr. Bannon has been in a battle with Jared Kushner, the president's son-in-law and senior adviser, since the spring.

Mr. Bannon, whose campaign against "globalists" was a hallmark of his tenure steering the right-wing website Breitbart.com, and Mr. Kushner had been allies throughout the transition process and through the beginning of the administration.

But their alliance ruptured as Mr. Trump elevated the roles of Gary D. Cohn, his top economic policy adviser and a former official at Goldman Sachs, and Dina Powell, a former Bush administration official who also worked on Wall Street...

[Aug 18, 2017] Russia-gate Hoax About To Be Exposed by Justin Raimondo

Aug 18, 2017 | original.antiwar.com

Julian Assange has the evidence – but will he reveal it?

There's an exciting new development in the "Russia-gate" investigation, one that has the potential to blast apart what is arguably the biggest hoax in the history of American politics.

Rep. Dana Rohrabacher (R-California) has met with Julian Assange – the first US congressman to do so – and returned with some spectacular news:. The Hill reports :

"Julian Assange told a U.S. congressman on Tuesday he can prove the leaked Democratic Party documents he published during last year's election did not come from Russia and promised additional helpful information about the leaks in the near future."

Assange has maintained all along that the Russians had nothing to do with procuring the DNC/Podesta emails, despite the intelligence community's assertions – offered without evidence – that Vladimir Putin personally approved the alleged "hack." Yet credible challenges to this view have emerged in recent days, including from a group of former intelligence officials, that throw considerable doubt on the idea that there was even a "hack" to begin with. "Pressed for more detail on the source of the documents," says The Hill ,

"Rohrabacher said he had information to share privately with President Trump. 'Julian also indicated that he is open to further discussions regarding specific information about the DNC email incident that is currently unknown to the public,' he said."

What this looks like is an attempt by Assange to negotiate with the US government over his current status as a political prisoner: he has been confined to the Ecuadorian embassy in London for many years. Hanging over him is the threat of arrest should he leave and his rendition to the United States to face charges. Could he be making a bid for freedom, offering to provide evidence of how he got his hands on the DNC/Podesta emails in exchange for a pardon?

Rohrabacher, who has a history as a libertarian fellow traveler, has been the target of a smear campaign due to his unwillingness to go along with the Russophobic hysteria that's all the rage in Washington, D.C. these days. Politico attacked him in a piece calling him "Putin's favorite congressman," and "news" accounts of this meeting with Assange invariably mention his "pro-Russian" views – as if a desire to get along with Russia is in itself somehow "subversive."

It's a brave stance to take when even the ostensibly libertarian and anti-interventionist Cato Institute has jumped on the hate-on-Russia bandwagon. Cato cut their ties to former Czech Republic president Vaclav Klaus because he refused to accept the War Party's line on the US-sponsored Ukrainian coup that overthrew the country's democratically elected chief of state. But it gets worse. Here 's Cato senior fellow Andrei Illarionov saying we are already at war with Russia:

"First of all, it is necessary to understand that this is a war. This is not a joke, this is not an accident, this is not a mistake, this is not a bad dream. It will not go away by itself. This is a war. As in any war, you either win or lose. And it is up to you what choice you will make."

And it's not just a cold war: the conflict must, says Illarionov, contain a military element:

"First, in purely military area, it is quite clear that victory in this war cannot be achieved without serious adjustments made to the existing military doctrine. Certainly, soft power is wonderful, but by itself it does not deter the use of force."

While the rest of the country is going about its business with nary a thought about Russia, in Washington the craziness is pandemic. Which is why Democratic National Committee spokeswoman Adrienne Watson felt safe vomiting up the usual bile in response to Rohrabacher's initiative: "We'll take the word of the US intelligence community over Julian Assange and Putin's favorite Congressman."

The power of groupthink inside the Washington Beltway has energized both the neo-cold warrior hysterics – epitomized by the imposition of yet more sanctions ! and the "Russia-gate" hoax to the point where it is unthinkable for anyone to challenge either. Yet Rohrabacher, whom I don't always agree with, has the balls to stand up to both, and for that he should be supported.

Assange has stubbornly resisted revealing anything about the provenance of the DNC/Podesta emails, allowing the CIA/NSA to claim that it was the Russians who "hacked the election," and also giving them a free hand to smear WikiLeaks as an instrument of the Kremlin. This meeting with Rohrabacher, and the promise of revelations to come, indicate that he is reconsidering his stance – and that we are on the verge of seeing "Russia-gate" definitively debunked.

We here at Antiwar.com have challenged the "mainstream" media's wholesale swallowing of the government's line from the very beginning. That's because there hasn't been one iota of solid proof for blaming the Russians, or even for the assertion that the DNC was "hacked." We don't accept government pronouncements at face value: indeed, we don't accept the "conventional wisdom" at face value, either. We always ask the question: " Where's the evidence? "

[Aug 18, 2017] Steve Bannon goes as the military takes over the Trump administration by Alexander Mercouris

Notable quotes:
"... Bannon's removal does not just remove from the White House a cunning political strategist. It also removes the one senior official in the Trump administration who had any pretensions to be an ideologist and an intellectual. ..."
"... n saying I should say that I for one do not rate Bannon as an ideologist and intellectual too highly. Whilst there can be no doubt of Bannon's media and campaigning skills, his ideological positions seem to me a mishmash of ideas – some more leftist than rightist – rather than a coherent platform. I also happen to think that his actual influence on the President has been hugely exaggerated. Since the inauguration I have not seen much evidence either of Bannon's supposed influence on the President or of his famed political skills. ..."
"... The only occasion where it did seem to me that Bannon exercised real influence was in shaping the text of the speech the President delivered during his recent trip to Poland. ..."
"... I have already made known my views of this speech . I think it was badly judged – managing to annoy both the Germans and the Russians at the same time – mistaken in many of its points, and the President has derived no political benefit from it. ..."
"... As for Bannon's alleged political skills, he has completely failed to shield the President from the Russiagate scandal and appears to me to have done little or nothing to hold the President's electoral base together, with Bannon having been almost invisible since the inauguration. ..."
"... The US's core electorate is becoming increasingly alienated from its political class; elements of the security services are openly operating independently of political control, and are working in alliance with sections of the Congress and the media – both now also widely despised – to bring down a constitutionally elected President, who they in turn despise. ..."
"... The only institution of the US state that still seems to be functioning as normal, and which appears to have retained a measure of public respect and support, is the military, which politically speaking seems increasingly to be calling the shots. ..."
Aug 18, 2017 | theduran.com

The announcement of the 'resignation' of White House Chief Strategist Steve Bannon represents the culmination of a process which began with the equally forced 'resignation' of President Trump's first National Security Adviser General Michael Flynn.

Individuals who were close to Donald Trump during his successful election campaign and who largely framed its terms – people like Bannon and Flynn – have been picked off one by one.

Taking their place is a strange coalition of former generals and former businessmen of essentially conventional Republican conservative views, which is cemented around three former generals who between them now have the levers of powers in their hands: General Kelly, the President's new Chief of Staff, General H.R. McMaster, his National Security Adviser, and General Mattis, the Secretary of Defense.

In the case of Bannon, it is his clear that his ousting was insisted on by General Kelly, who is continuing to tighten his control of the White House.

Bannon's removal – not coincidentally – has come at the same time that General H.R. McMaster is completing his purge of the remaining Flynn hold-overs on the staff of the National Security Council.

Bannon's removal does not just remove from the White House a cunning political strategist. It also removes the one senior official in the Trump administration who had any pretensions to be an ideologist and an intellectual.

I n saying I should say that I for one do not rate Bannon as an ideologist and intellectual too highly. Whilst there can be no doubt of Bannon's media and campaigning skills, his ideological positions seem to me a mishmash of ideas – some more leftist than rightist – rather than a coherent platform. I also happen to think that his actual influence on the President has been hugely exaggerated. Since the inauguration I have not seen much evidence either of Bannon's supposed influence on the President or of his famed political skills.

Bannon is sometimes credited as being the author of the President's two travel ban Executive Orders. I am sure this wrong. The Executive Orders clearly originate with the wishes of the President himself. If Bannon did have any role in them – which is possible – it would have been secondary to the President's own. I would add that in that case Bannon must take some of the blame for the disastrously incompetent execution of the first of these two Executive Orders, which set the scene for the legal challenges that followed.

The only occasion where it did seem to me that Bannon exercised real influence was in shaping the text of the speech the President delivered during his recent trip to Poland.

I have already made known my views of this speech . I think it was badly judged – managing to annoy both the Germans and the Russians at the same time – mistaken in many of its points, and the President has derived no political benefit from it.

However it is the closest thing to an ideological statement the President has made since he took office, and Bannon is widely believed – probably rightly – to have written it.

As for Bannon's alleged political skills, he has completely failed to shield the President from the Russiagate scandal and appears to me to have done little or nothing to hold the President's electoral base together, with Bannon having been almost invisible since the inauguration.

In view of Bannon's ineffectiveness since the inauguration I doubt that his removal will make any difference to the Trump administration's policies or to the support the President still has from his electoral base, most of whose members are unlikely to know much about Bannon anyway.

It is in a completely different respect – one wholly independent of President Trump's success or failure as President – that the events of the last few weeks give cause for serious concern.

The events of the last year highlight the extent to which the US is in deep political crisis.

The US's core electorate is becoming increasingly alienated from its political class; elements of the security services are openly operating independently of political control, and are working in alliance with sections of the Congress and the media – both now also widely despised – to bring down a constitutionally elected President, who they in turn despise.

All this is happening at the same time that there is growing criticism of the economic institutions of the US government, which since the 2008 financial crisis have seemed to side with a wealthy and unprincipled minority against the interests of the majority.

The only institution of the US state that still seems to be functioning as normal, and which appears to have retained a measure of public respect and support, is the military, which politically speaking seems increasingly to be calling the shots.

It is striking that the only officials President Trump can nominate to senior positions who do not immediately run into bitter opposition have been – apart from General Flynn, who was a special case – senior soldiers.

Now the military in the persons of Kelly, McMaster and Mattis find themselves at the heart of the US government to an extent that has never been true before in US history, even during the Presidencies of former military men like Andrew Jackson, Ulysses Grant or Dwight Eisenhower.

The last time that happened in a major Western nation – that the civilian institutions of the state had become so dysfunctional that the military as the only functioning institution left ended up dominating the nation's government and deciding the nation's policies – was in Germany in the lead up to the First World War.

Time will show what the results will be this time, but the German example is hardly a reassuring one.

[Aug 18, 2017] Pentagon took over White house: The firing of Bannon leaves the Generals without an opposing view. They will no longer be contradicted.

Notable quotes:
"... We were the sole superpower, Earth's hyperpower, its designated global sheriff, the architect of our planetary future. After five centuries of great power rivalries, in the wake of a two-superpower world that, amid the threat of nuclear annihilation, seemed to last forever and a day (even if it didn't quite make it 50 years), the United States was the ultimate survivor, the victor of victors, the last of the last. It stood triumphantly at the end of history. In a lottery that had lasted since Europe's wooden ships first broke out of a periphery of Eurasia and began to colonize much of the planet, the United States was the chosen one, the country that would leave every imperial world-maker from the Romans to the British in its shadow. ..."
"... Engelhardt still doesn't understand that 911 was supposed to (and did) solidify the justification for the expansion of The American Century since we now made our own rules and reality. ..."
"... The Bannon interview is fascinating, but don't forget that he's a strategist: He says what he thinks will serve his purpose, not necessarily what he believes. ..."
"... Now he's gone, whether for good time will tell. And Trump is looking rather isolated. If he feels his position becomes too complicated or even untenable, he might do 'stupid stuff' - and as I mentioned earlier, this may be just what the Neocons want: With the US decline accelerating both internally and globally, 'war' may seem the last option to them. But of course, they don't want the blame - they want to be able to say 'see, we told you he's crazy, but you didn't listen.' Difficult times. ..."
Aug 18, 2017 | www.moonofalabama.org

Are we a step closer to War?

Posted by: CarlD | Aug 18, 2017 2:16:17 PM | 96

jawbone | Aug 18, 2017 2:19:23 PM | 97

Well, with Bannon gone who will have most influence over Trump now? Will the rest of the Alt-Righters stay at the White House? Hhhmmm...

Meanwhile, while the MCM (mainstream corporate media) is unable to focus on more that one or two things, Trump has signed an executivve order which will have real work consequences as sea levels rise. Under Obama, a rule was developed to require infrastructure projects to consider the effects of global warming on flooding, effects of storms, etc. Now, developers are free to build what and where they want, with no consideration for the possible damage which might destroy those projects in the future.

Throw-away society on a grand --and expensive-- scale.

https://www.yahoo.com/news/donald-trump-scrap-rule-protect-094700052.html

Oh, my. Things ought to be interesting in DC in the near future. Dangerous all over in the long run.

jawbone | Aug 18, 2017 2:20:53 PM | 98
Oops. Real work consequences should have been real world consequences. Preview is a good tool to use....
karlof1 | Aug 18, 2017 2:29:00 PM | 99
Presumably, Bannon's mouth ( American Prospect interview) got him fired--requested to resign--at the instigation of Chief of Staff Gen. Kelly, with it being spun nicely: "Kelly and Bannon "have mutually agreed today would be Steve's last day," White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said in a statement. 'We are grateful for his service and wish him the best.'" https://www.rt.com/usa/400175-trump-fires-bannon-strategist/

Now it appears that Trump's completely surrounded by the former generals he appointed--a different version of Seven Days in May? Or is it the fantastical number of contradictions finally coming home to roost as The Saker seems to think, http://thesaker.is/the-neocons-are-pushing-the-usa-and-the-rest-of-the-world-towards-a-dangerous-crisis/

When Trump got elected, I thought the best outcome would be total gridlock in DC; and in some ways, that's what's occurred. Yet, as The Saker points out, something's afoot if the propaganda published by Newsweek--which is owned by Bezos--is any indication.

It's Friday. The Syrian Army is making huge gains. Congress is in recess. And the weather forecast for Monday's eclipse here on the Oregon coast is looking positive--no fog!

karlof1 | Aug 18, 2017 2:37:52 PM | 100 previous page
Yeah jawbone, it's a good tool. I should've used it prior to my comment being grabbed by the spambot. Al Gore's opined Trump should resign, indicating he favors Pence, which send s what sort of message given the context Gore opined? https://www.commondreams.org/news/2017/08/18/al-gore-has-just-one-small-bit-advice-trump-resign As most barflys know, Pence is far worse on most things than Trump. Did Gore just out himself as a previously closeted Neocon?
Anonymous | Aug 18, 2017 2:40:58 PM | 101
Another "grown up"?:

Mattis to back Kiev's claim to Crimea during Ukraine visit

US Defense Secretary James Mattis will visit Ukraine next week and reassure the government in Kiev that the US still considers Crimea a part of the country's territory, the Pentagon said. Mattis will tell Kiev the US is "firmly committed to the goal of restoring Ukraine's sovereignty and territorial integrity."

fastfreddy | Aug 18, 2017 2:42:16 PM | 102
Manifest Destiny and Religious Zealotry (extremism) were manifested in recent history by America's Great Leaders. Here's General Boykin:

You know what? I knew that my God was bigger than his [about Muslims in Somalia]. I knew that my God was a real God and his was an idol.

Many other quotes here:

http://www.azquotes.com/author/39645-William_G_Boykin

Greg M | Aug 18, 2017 2:55:25 PM | 103
@96, I view this as part of an effort to push back against anti Iran pro Israel hard liners. First with Flynn, then McMaster forcing out Flynn allies, and now Bannon. Not that McMaster and his people are not pro Israel or possess any redeeming qualities, but it is important to understand that Bannon and those in his circle are NOT anti interventionists.
@Madderhatter67 | Aug 18, 2017 3:21:06 PM | 104
Thirdeye & Fastfreddy

Thirdeye "The third eye is a mystical and esoteric concept of a speculative invisible eye which provides perception beyond ordinary sight." Wikipedia ;)

This is a good read. Especially for Thirdeye blind.

Pardon Me!
High Crimes and Demeanors in the Age of Trump
By Tom Engelhardt

Let me try to get this straight: from the moment the Soviet Union imploded in 1991 until recently just about every politician and mainstream pundit in America assured us that we were the planet's indispensable nation, the only truly exceptional one on this small orb of ours.

We were the sole superpower, Earth's hyperpower, its designated global sheriff, the architect of our planetary future. After five centuries of great power rivalries, in the wake of a two-superpower world that, amid the threat of nuclear annihilation, seemed to last forever and a day (even if it didn't quite make it 50 years), the United States was the ultimate survivor, the victor of victors, the last of the last. It stood triumphantly at the end of history. In a lottery that had lasted since Europe's wooden ships first broke out of a periphery of Eurasia and began to colonize much of the planet, the United States was the chosen one, the country that would leave every imperial world-maker from the Romans to the British in its shadow.

Who could doubt that this was now our world in a coming American century beyond compare?

And then, of course, came the attacks of 9/11................ The rest below.

http://www.tomdispatch.com/

Anonymous | Aug 18, 2017 3:34:25 PM | 105
Greg D

You couldnt be more wrong: Bannon, Flynn etcetera was actually quite sane compared to the other neocon, deepstate figures coming in, go figure why these people had to go - think also why someone like Mattis DONT have to go and is loved by the media, deep state etcetera.

karlof1 | Aug 18, 2017 3:37:18 PM | 106
@Madderhatter67 @104--

Engelhardt still doesn't understand that 911 was supposed to (and did) solidify the justification for the expansion of The American Century since we now made our own rules and reality.

smuks | Aug 18, 2017 6:50:43 PM | 107
Nah...don't quite agree on this one. The Bannon interview is fascinating, but don't forget that he's a strategist: He says what he thinks will serve his purpose, not necessarily what he believes.

Now he's gone, whether for good time will tell. And Trump is looking rather isolated. If he feels his position becomes too complicated or even untenable, he might do 'stupid stuff' - and as I mentioned earlier, this may be just what the Neocons want: With the US decline accelerating both internally and globally, 'war' may seem the last option to them. But of course, they don't want the blame - they want to be able to say 'see, we told you he's crazy, but you didn't listen.' Difficult times.

[Aug 16, 2017] Neocons Leverage Trump-Hate for More Wars Defend Democracy Press by Robert Parry

Notable quotes:
"... For his part, Putin compounded his offense to the neocons by facilitating Obama's negotiations with Iran that imposed strict constraints on Iran's actions toward development of a nuclear bomb and took U.S. war against Iran off the table. The neocons, Israel and Saudi Arabia wanted the U.S. military to lead a bombing campaign against Iran with the hope of crippling their regional adversary and possibly even achieving "regime change" in Tehran. ..."
"... Many U.S. pundits and journalists – in the conservative, centrist and liberal media – were swept up by the various hysterias over Syria, Iran and Russia – much as they had been a decade earlier around the Iraq-WMD frenzy and the "responsibility to protect" (or R2P) argument for the violent "regime change" in Libya in 2011. In all these cases, the public debate was saturated with U.S. government and neocon propaganda, much of it false. ..."
"... But it worked. For instance, the neocons and their liberal-interventionist sidekicks achieved extraordinary success in seducing many American "peace activists" to support the "regime change" war in Syria by sending sympathetic victims of the Syrian government on speaking tours. ..."
"... Still, whenever the White Helmets or other "activists" accused the Syrian government of some unlikely chemical attack, the information was treated as gospel . When United Nations investigators, who were under enormous pressure to confirm the propaganda tales beloved in the West, uncovered evidence that one of the alleged chlorine attacks was staged by the jihadists, the mainstream U.S. media politely looked the other way and continued to treat the chemical-weapons stories as credible. ..."
"... "Coverage of the Syrian war will be remembered as one of the most shameful episodes in the history of the American press." ..."
"... The evidence that Russia had "hacked our democracy" was very thin – some private outfit called Crowdstrike found Cyrillic lettering and a reference to the founder of the Soviet KGB in some of the metadata – but that "incriminating evidence" contradicted Crowdstrike's own notion of a crack Russian hacking operation that was almost impossible to trace. ..."
"... According to Clapper's later congressional testimony, the analysts for this job were "hand-picked" from the CIA, FBI and National Security Agency and assigned to produce an "assessment" before Obama left office. Their Jan. 6 report was remarkable in its lack of evidence and the analysts themselves admitted that it fell far short of establishing anything as fact. It amounted to a continuation of the "trust us" approach that had dominated the anti-Russia themes for years. ..."
"... "When all right-thinking people in the nation's capital seem to agree on something – as has been the case recently with legislation imposing new sanctions on Russia – that may be a warning that the debate has veered into an unthinking herd mentality," Ignatius wrote as he questioned the wisdom of overusing sanctions and tying the President's hands on when to remove sanctions. ..."
"... But Ignatius failed to follow his own logic when it came to the core groupthink about Russia "meddling" in the U.S. election. Despite the thinness of the evidence, the certainty about Russia's guilt is now shared by "all right-thinking people" in Washington, who agree that this point is beyond dispute despite the denials from both WikiLeaks, which published the purloined Democratic emails, and the Russian government. ..."
"... Yet, the neocons have achieved perhaps their greatest success by merging Cold War Russo-phobia with the Trump Derangement Syndrome to enlist liberals and even progressives into the neocon drive for more "regime change" wars. ..."
"... Even relative Kremlin moderates such as Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev , are citing Trump's tail-between-his-legs signing of the sanctions bill as proof that the U.S. establishment has blocked any hope for a détente between Washington and Moscow. ..."
"... In other words, the prospects for advancing the neocon agenda of more "regime change" wars and coups have grown – and the neocons can claim as their allies virtually the entire Democratic Party hierarchy which is so eager to appease its angry #Resistance base that even the heightened risk of nuclear war is being ignored. ..."
5 August 2017 | www.defenddemocracy.press

The original source of this article is Consortiumnews Copyright © Robert Parry , Consortiumnews , 2017

A savvy Washington observer once told me that the political reality about the neoconservatives is that they alone couldn't win you a single precinct in the United States. But both Republicans and Democrats still line up to gain neocon support or at least neocon acceptance. Part of the reason for this paradox is the degree of dominance that the neoconservatives have established in the national news media – as op-ed writers and TV commentators – and the neocon ties to the Israel Lobby that is famous for showering contributions on favored politicians and on the opponents of those not favored.

Since the neocons' emergence as big-time foreign policy players in the Reagan administration , they also have demonstrated extraordinary resilience, receiving a steady flow of money often through U.S. government-funded grants from organizations such as the National Endowment for Democracy and through donations from military contractors to hawkish neocon think tanks .

But neocons' most astonishing success over the past year may have been how they have pulled liberals and even some progressives into the neocon strategies for war and more war, largely by exploiting the Left's disgust with President Trump

People who would normally favor international cooperation toward peaceful resolution of conflicts have joined the neocons in ratcheting up global tensions and making progress toward peace far more difficult.

The provocative "Countering America's Adversaries Through Sanctions Act," which imposes sanctions on Russia, Iran and North Korea while tying President Trump's hands in removing those penalties, passed the Congress without a single Democrat voting no.

The only dissenting votes came from three Republican House members – Justin Amash of Michigan, Jimmy Duncan of Tennessee, and Thomas Massie of Kentucky – and from Republican Rand Paul of Kentucky and Independent Bernie Sanders of Vermont in the Senate.

In other words, every Democrat present for the vote adopted the neocon position of escalating tensions with Russia and Iran. The new sanctions appear to close off hopes for a détente with Russia and may torpedo the nuclear agreement with Iran, which would put the bomb-bomb-bomb option back on the table just where the neocons want it.

The Putin Obstacle

As for Russia, the neocons have viewed President Vladimir Putin as a major obstacle to their plans at least since 2013 when he helped President Obama come up with a compromise with Syria that averted a U.S. military strike over dubious claims that the Syrian military was responsible for a sarin gas attack outside Damascus on Aug. 21, 2013.

Subsequent evidence indicated that the sarin attack most likely was a provocation by Al Qaeda's Syrian affiliate to trick the U.S. military into entering the war on Al Qaeda's side.

While you might wonder why the U.S. government would even think about taking actions that would benefit Al Qaeda, which lured the U.S. into this Mideast quagmire in the first place by attacking on 9/11, the answer is that Israel and the neocons – along with Saudi Arabia and other Sunni-governed states – favored an Al Qaeda victory if that was what was needed to shatter the so-called "Shiite crescent," anchored in Iran and reaching through Syria to Lebanon.

Many neocons are, in effect, America's Israeli agents and – since Israel is now allied with Saudi Arabia and the Sunni Gulf states versus Iran – the neocons exercise their media/political influence to rationalize U.S. military strikes against Iran's regional allies, i.e., Syria's secular government of Bashar al-Assad

Read also: JFK at 100

For his part, Putin compounded his offense to the neocons by facilitating Obama's negotiations with Iran that imposed strict constraints on Iran's actions toward development of a nuclear bomb and took U.S. war against Iran off the table. The neocons, Israel and Saudi Arabia wanted the U.S. military to lead a bombing campaign against Iran with the hope of crippling their regional adversary and possibly even achieving "regime change" in Tehran.

Punishing Russia

It was in that time frame that NED's neocon President Carl Gershman identified Ukraine as the "biggest prize" and an important step toward the even bigger prize of removing Putin in Russia.

Other U.S. government neocons, including Assistant Secretary of State for European Affairs Victoria Nuland and Sen. John McCain , delivered the Ukraine "prize" by supporting the Feb. 22, 2014 coup that overthrew the elected government of Ukraine and unleashed anti-Russian nationalists (including neo-Nazis) who began killing ethnic Russians in the south and east near Russia's border.

When Putin responded by allowing Crimeans to vote on secession from Ukraine and reunification with Russia, the West – and especially the neocon-dominated mainstream media – denounced the move as a "Russian invasion." Covertly, the Russians also helped ethnic Russians in eastern Ukraine who defied the coup regime in Kiev and faced annihilation from Ukrainian military forces, including the neo-Nazi Azov Battalion, which literally displayed Swastikas and SS symbols. Putin's assistance to these embattled ethnic Russian Ukrainians became "Russian aggression."

Many U.S. pundits and journalists – in the conservative, centrist and liberal media – were swept up by the various hysterias over Syria, Iran and Russia – much as they had been a decade earlier around the Iraq-WMD frenzy and the "responsibility to protect" (or R2P) argument for the violent "regime change" in Libya in 2011. In all these cases, the public debate was saturated with U.S. government and neocon propaganda, much of it false.

But it worked. For instance, the neocons and their liberal-interventionist sidekicks achieved extraordinary success in seducing many American "peace activists" to support the "regime change" war in Syria by sending sympathetic victims of the Syrian government on speaking tours.

Meanwhile, the major U.S. media essentially flacked for "moderate" Syrian rebels who just happened to be fighting alongside Al Qaeda's Syrian affiliate and sharing their powerful U.S.-supplied weapons with the jihadists, all the better to kill Syrian soldiers trying to protect the secular government in Damascus.

Successful Propaganda

As part of this propaganda process, the jihadists' P.R. adjunct, known as the White Helmets , phoned in anti-government atrocity stories to eager and credulous Western journalists who didn't dare visit the Al Qaeda-controlled zones for fear of being beheaded.

Still, whenever the White Helmets or other "activists" accused the Syrian government of some unlikely chemical attack, the information was treated as gospel . When United Nations investigators, who were under enormous pressure to confirm the propaganda tales beloved in the West, uncovered evidence that one of the alleged chlorine attacks was staged by the jihadists, the mainstream U.S. media politely looked the other way and continued to treat the chemical-weapons stories as credible.

Historian and journalist Stephen Kinzer has said ,

"Coverage of the Syrian war will be remembered as one of the most shameful episodes in the history of the American press."

Read also: The future of Sanders' political movement

But all these successes in the neocons' "perception management" operations pale when compared to what the neocons have accomplished since Donald Trump defeated Hillary Clinton last November.

Fueled by the shock and disgust over the egotistical self-proclaimed pussy-grabber ascending to the highest office in the land, many Americans looked for both an excuse for explaining the outcome and a strategy for removing Trump as quickly as possible. The answer to both concerns became: blame Russia.

The evidence that Russia had "hacked our democracy" was very thin – some private outfit called Crowdstrike found Cyrillic lettering and a reference to the founder of the Soviet KGB in some of the metadata – but that "incriminating evidence" contradicted Crowdstrike's own notion of a crack Russian hacking operation that was almost impossible to trace.

So, even though the FBI failed to secure the Democratic National Committee's computers so the government could do its own forensic analysis, President Obama assigned his intelligence chiefs, CIA Director John Brennan and Director of National Intelligence James Clapper , to come up with an assessment that could be used to blame Trump's victory on "Russian meddling." Obama, of course, shared the revulsion over Trump's victory, since the real-estate mogul/reality-TV star had famously launched his own political career by spreading the lie that Obama was born in Kenya.

'Hand-Picked' Analysts

According to Clapper's later congressional testimony, the analysts for this job were "hand-picked" from the CIA, FBI and National Security Agency and assigned to produce an "assessment" before Obama left office. Their Jan. 6 report was remarkable in its lack of evidence and the analysts themselves admitted that it fell far short of establishing anything as fact. It amounted to a continuation of the "trust us" approach that had dominated the anti-Russia themes for years.

Much of the thin report focused on complaints about Russia's RT network for covering the Occupy Wall Street protests and sponsoring a 2012 debate for third-party presidential candidates who had been excluded from the Democratic-Republican debates between President Obama and former Gov. Mitt Romney

The absurdity of citing such examples in which RT contributed to the public debate in America as proof of Russia attacking American democracy should have been apparent to everyone, but the Russia-gate stampede had begun and so instead of ridiculing the Jan. 6 report as an insult to reason, its shaky Russia-did-it conclusions were embraced as unassailable Truth, buttressed by the false claim that the assessment represented the consensus view of all 17 U.S. intelligence agencies.

So, for instance, we get the internal contradictions of a Friday column by Washington Post columnist David Ignatius who starts off by making a legitimate point about Washington groupthink.

"When all right-thinking people in the nation's capital seem to agree on something – as has been the case recently with legislation imposing new sanctions on Russia – that may be a warning that the debate has veered into an unthinking herd mentality," Ignatius wrote as he questioned the wisdom of overusing sanctions and tying the President's hands on when to remove sanctions.

Lost Logic

But Ignatius failed to follow his own logic when it came to the core groupthink about Russia "meddling" in the U.S. election. Despite the thinness of the evidence, the certainty about Russia's guilt is now shared by "all right-thinking people" in Washington, who agree that this point is beyond dispute despite the denials from both WikiLeaks, which published the purloined Democratic emails, and the Russian government.

Read also: Now, only CIA and the military do not lie in USA! But, alone, can they stop the Coup and the War?

Ignatius seemed nervous that his mild deviation from the conventional wisdom about the sanctions bill might risk his standing with the Establishment, so he added:

"Don't misunderstand me. In questioning congressional review of sanctions, I'm not excusing Trump's behavior. His non-response to Russia's well-documented meddling in the 2016 presidential election has been outrageous."

However, as usual for the U.S. mainstream media, Ignatius doesn't cite any of those documents. Presumably, he's referring to the Jan. 6 assessment, which itself contained no real evidence to support its opinion that Russia hacked into Democratic emails and gave them to WikiLeaks for distribution.

Just because a lot of Important People keep repeating the same allegation doesn't make the allegation true or "well-documented." And skepticism should be raised even higher when there is a clear political motive for pushing a falsehood as truth, as we should have learned from President George W. Bush 's Iraq-WMD fallacies and from President Barack Obama's wild exaggerations about the need to intervene in Libya to prevent a massacre of civilians.

But Washington neocons always start with a leg up because of their easy access to the editorial pages of The New York Times and Washington Post as well as their speed-dial relationships with producers at CNN and other cable outlets.

Yet, the neocons have achieved perhaps their greatest success by merging Cold War Russo-phobia with the Trump Derangement Syndrome to enlist liberals and even progressives into the neocon drive for more "regime change" wars.

There can be no doubt that the escalation of sanctions against Russia and Iran will have the effect of escalating geopolitical tensions with those two important countries and making war, even nuclear war, more likely.

In Iran, hardliners are already telling President Hassan Rouhani , "We told you so" that the U.S. government can't be trusted in its promise to remove – not increase – sanctions in compliance with the nuclear agreement.

And, Putin, who is actually one of the more pro-Western leaders in Russia, faces attacks from his own hardliners who view him as naïve in thinking that Russia would ever be accepted by the West.

Even relative Kremlin moderates such as Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev , are citing Trump's tail-between-his-legs signing of the sanctions bill as proof that the U.S. establishment has blocked any hope for a détente between Washington and Moscow.

In other words, the prospects for advancing the neocon agenda of more "regime change" wars and coups have grown – and the neocons can claim as their allies virtually the entire Democratic Party hierarchy which is so eager to appease its angry #Resistance base that even the heightened risk of nuclear war is being ignored.

Investigative reporter Robert Parry broke many of the Iran-Contra stories for The Associated Press and Newsweek in the 1980s. You can buy his latest book, America's Stolen Narrative, either in print here or as an e-book (from Amazon and barnesandnoble.com ).

[Aug 14, 2017] Slouching Toward Mar-a-Lago

Notable quotes:
"... Expectations that Trump's ouster will restore normalcy ignore the very factors that first handed him the Republican nomination (with a slew of competitors wondering what hit them) and then put him in the Oval Office (with a vastly more seasoned and disciplined, if uninspiring, opponent left to bemoan the injustice of it all). ..."
"... Not all, but many of Trump's supporters voted for him for the same reason that people buy lottery tickets: Why not? In their estimation, they had little to lose. Their loathing of the status quo is such that they may well stick with Trump even as it becomes increasingly obvious that his promise of salvation ! an America made "great again" ! is not going to materialize. ..."
"... Yet those who imagine that Trump's removal will put things right are likewise deluding themselves. To persist in thinking that he defines the problem is to commit an error of the first order. Trump is not cause, but consequence. ..."
"... the election of 2016 constituted a de facto referendum on the course of recent American history. That referendum rendered a definitive judgment: the underlying consensus informing U.S. policy since the end of the Cold War has collapsed. Precepts that members of the policy elite have long treated as self-evident no longer command the backing or assent of the American people. Put simply: it's the ideas, stupid. ..."
"... "Without the Cold War, what's the point of being an American?" As the long twilight struggle was finally winding down, Harry "Rabbit" Angstrom, novelist John Updike's late-twentieth-century Everyman , pondered that question. ..."
"... Unfettered neoliberalism plus the unencumbered self plus unabashed American assertiveness: these defined the elements of the post-Cold-War consensus that formed during the first half of the 1990s ! plus what enthusiasts called the information revolution. The miracle of that "revolution," gathering momentum just as the Soviet Union was going down for the count, provided the secret sauce that infused the emerging consensus with a sense of historical inevitability. ..."
"... The three presidents of the post-Cold-War era ! Bill Clinton, George W. Bush, and Barack Obama ! put these several propositions to the test. Politics-as-theater requires us to pretend that our 42nd, 43rd, and 44th presidents differed in fundamental ways. In practice, however, their similarities greatly outweighed any of those differences. Taken together, the administrations over which they presided collaborated in pursuing a common agenda, each intent on proving that the post-Cold-War consensus could work in the face of mounting evidence to the contrary. ..."
"... To be fair, it did work for some. "Globalization" made some people very rich indeed. In doing so, however, it greatly exacerbated inequality , while doing nothing to alleviate the condition of the American working class and underclass. ..."
"... I never liked Obama, but I don't think he has personal animus against Russia, Syria, Iran, Libya, or Palestinians. But given who was looking over his shoulder, he had to make things difficult for those nations, and that is why leaders of those nations and Obama came to hate one another. As for North Korea, much of the tensions wouldn't exist if US hadn't threatened or invaded 'axis of evil' nations and forced S. Korea to carry out joint exercises to prepare for invasion. ..."
"... Same with Trump. I seriously doubt if Trump has personal animus against Syrians, Russians, Iranians, Palestinians, and etc. But who is looking over his shoulder? So, he has to hate the same people that Obama had to hate. ..."
Aug 14, 2017 | www.unz.com

If we have, as innumerable commentators assert, embarked upon the Age of Trump, the defining feature of that age might well be the single-minded determination of those horrified and intent on ensuring its prompt termination. In 2016, TIME magazine chose Trump as its person of the year . In 2017, when it comes to dominating the news, that "person" might turn out to be a group ! all those fixated on cleansing the White House of Trump's defiling presence.

Egged on and abetted in every way by Trump himself, the anti-Trump resistance has made itself the Big Story. Lies, hate, collusion, conspiracy, fascism: rarely has the everyday vocabulary of American politics been as ominous and forbidding as over the past six months. Take resistance rhetoric at face value and you might conclude that Donald Trump is indeed the fifth horseman of the Apocalypse , his presence in the presidential saddle eclipsing all other concerns. Pestilence, War, Famine, and Death will just have to wait.

The unspoken assumption of those most determined to banish him from public life appears to be this: once he's gone, history will be returned to its intended path, humankind will breathe a collective sigh of relief, and all will be well again. Yet such an assumption strikes me as remarkably wrongheaded ! and not merely because, should Trump prematurely depart from office, Mike Pence will succeed him. Expectations that Trump's ouster will restore normalcy ignore the very factors that first handed him the Republican nomination (with a slew of competitors wondering what hit them) and then put him in the Oval Office (with a vastly more seasoned and disciplined, if uninspiring, opponent left to bemoan the injustice of it all).

Not all, but many of Trump's supporters voted for him for the same reason that people buy lottery tickets: Why not? In their estimation, they had little to lose. Their loathing of the status quo is such that they may well stick with Trump even as it becomes increasingly obvious that his promise of salvation ! an America made "great again" ! is not going to materialize.

Yet those who imagine that Trump's removal will put things right are likewise deluding themselves. To persist in thinking that he defines the problem is to commit an error of the first order. Trump is not cause, but consequence.

For too long, the cult of the presidency has provided an excuse for treating politics as a melodrama staged at four-year intervals and centering on hopes of another Roosevelt or Kennedy or Reagan appearing as the agent of American deliverance. Donald Trump's ascent to the office once inhabited by those worthies should demolish such fantasies once and for all.

How is it that someone like Trump could become president in the first place? Blame sexism, Fox News, James Comey, Russian meddling, and Hillary's failure to visit Wisconsin all you want, but a more fundamental explanation is this: the election of 2016 constituted a de facto referendum on the course of recent American history. That referendum rendered a definitive judgment: the underlying consensus informing U.S. policy since the end of the Cold War has collapsed. Precepts that members of the policy elite have long treated as self-evident no longer command the backing or assent of the American people. Put simply: it's the ideas, stupid.

Rabbit Poses a Question

"Without the Cold War, what's the point of being an American?" As the long twilight struggle was finally winding down, Harry "Rabbit" Angstrom, novelist John Updike's late-twentieth-century Everyman , pondered that question. In short order, Rabbit got his answer. So, too, after only perfunctory consultation, did his fellow citizens.

The passing of the Cold War offered cause for celebration. On that point all agreed. Yet, as it turned out, it did not require reflection from the public at large. Policy elites professed to have matters well in hand. The dawning era, they believed, summoned Americans not to think anew, but to keep doing precisely what they were accustomed to doing, albeit without fretting further about Communist takeovers or the risks of nuclear Armageddon. In a world where a " single superpower " was calling the shots, utopia was right around the corner. All that was needed was for the United States to demonstrate the requisite confidence and resolve.

Three specific propositions made up the elite consensus that coalesced during the initial decade of the post-Cold-War era. According to the first, the globalization of corporate capitalism held the key to wealth creation on a hitherto unimaginable scale. According to the second, jettisoning norms derived from Judeo-Christian religious traditions held the key to the further expansion of personal freedom. According to the third, muscular global leadership exercised by the United States held the key to promoting a stable and humane international order.

Unfettered neoliberalism plus the unencumbered self plus unabashed American assertiveness: these defined the elements of the post-Cold-War consensus that formed during the first half of the 1990s ! plus what enthusiasts called the information revolution. The miracle of that "revolution," gathering momentum just as the Soviet Union was going down for the count, provided the secret sauce that infused the emerging consensus with a sense of historical inevitability.

The Cold War itself had fostered notable improvements in computational speed and capacity, new modes of communication, and techniques for storing, accessing, and manipulating information. Yet, however impressive, such developments remained subsidiary to the larger East-West competition. Only as the Cold War receded did they move from background to forefront. For true believers, information technology came to serve a quasi-theological function, promising answers to life's ultimate questions. Although God might be dead, Americans found in Bill Gates and Steve Jobs nerdy but compelling idols.

More immediately, in the eyes of the policy elite, the information revolution meshed with and reinforced the policy consensus. For those focused on the political economy, it greased the wheels of globalized capitalism, creating vast new opportunities for trade and investment. For those looking to shed constraints on personal freedom, information promised empowerment, making identity itself something to choose, discard, or modify. For members of the national security apparatus, the information revolution seemed certain to endow the United States with seemingly unassailable military capabilities. That these various enhancements would combine to improve the human condition was taken for granted; that they would, in due course, align everybody ! from Afghans to Zimbabweans ! with American values and the American way of life seemed more or less inevitable.

The three presidents of the post-Cold-War era ! Bill Clinton, George W. Bush, and Barack Obama ! put these several propositions to the test. Politics-as-theater requires us to pretend that our 42nd, 43rd, and 44th presidents differed in fundamental ways. In practice, however, their similarities greatly outweighed any of those differences. Taken together, the administrations over which they presided collaborated in pursuing a common agenda, each intent on proving that the post-Cold-War consensus could work in the face of mounting evidence to the contrary.

To be fair, it did work for some. "Globalization" made some people very rich indeed. In doing so, however, it greatly exacerbated inequality , while doing nothing to alleviate the condition of the American working class and underclass.

The emphasis on diversity and multiculturalism improved the status of groups long subjected to discrimination. Yet these advances have done remarkably little to reduce the alienation and despair pervading a society suffering from epidemics of chronic substance abuse , morbid obesity , teen suicide , and similar afflictions. Throw in the world's highest incarceration rate , a seemingly endless appetite for porn , urban school systems mired in permanent crisis, and mass shootings that occur with metronomic regularity, and what you have is something other than the profile of a healthy society.

As for militarized American global leadership, it has indeed resulted in various bad actors meeting richly deserved fates. Goodbye, Saddam. Good riddance, Osama. Yet it has also embroiled the United States in a series of costly, senseless, unsuccessful, and ultimately counterproductive wars. As for the vaunted information revolution, its impact has been ambiguous at best, even if those with eyeballs glued to their personal electronic devices can't tolerate being offline long enough to assess the actual costs of being perpetually connected.

In November 2016, Americans who consider themselves ill served by the post-Cold-War consensus signaled that they had had enough. Voters not persuaded that neoliberal economic policies, a culture taking its motto from the Outback steakhouse chain, and a national security strategy that employs the U.S. military as a global police force were working to their benefit provided a crucial margin in the election of Donald Trump.

The response of the political establishment to this extraordinary repudiation testifies to the extent of its bankruptcy. The Republican Party still clings to the notion that reducing taxes, cutting government red tape, restricting abortion, curbing immigration, prohibiting flag-burning, and increasing military spending will alleviate all that ails the country. Meanwhile, to judge by the promises contained in their recently unveiled (and instantly forgotten ) program for a "Better Deal," Democrats believe that raising the minimum wage, capping the cost of prescription drugs, and creating apprenticeship programs for the unemployed will return their party to the good graces of the American electorate.

In both parties embarrassingly small-bore thinking prevails, with Republicans and Democrats equally bereft of fresh ideas. Each party is led by aging hacks. Neither has devised an antidote to the crisis in American politics signified by the nomination and election of Donald Trump.

While our emperor tweets, Rome itself fiddles.

... ... ...

Robert Magill > , August 8, 2017 at 5:06 pm GMT

First, abolish the Electoral College. Doing so will preclude any further occurrence of the circumstances that twice in recent decades cast doubt on the outcome of national elections and thereby did far more than any foreign interference to undermine the legitimacy of American politics.

The November numbers indicate that for the time being without the Electoral College, California and New York will elect our President well into the future.

http://robertmagill.wordpress.com

Priss Factor > , Website August 8, 2017 at 5:17 pm GMT

If Bacevich had really balls, he would cut to the chase and say it like it is.

I think Trump the person doesn't want trouble with Iran, Syria, and Russia. He's a businessman who wants to do business with the world while protecting US borders and sovereignty. Trump is anti-Iran because of Jewish Lobby. His peace with Russia was destroyed by the Lobby and its purse-strings and puppet-strings.

The undeniable fact of the US is it's not a democracy in terms of real power. It is a Jewish Supremacist Oligarchy. To be sure, there are Jewish critics of Jewish power. Think of Philip Weiss and others. Technically, US still has rule of law and due process. But in the end, the Power decides. Look at the anti-BDS bill supported even by Republicans who make a big stink about liberty and free speech.

California is said to be uber-'progressive', and many grassroots people there are supportive of BDS. But California elites and whore politicians are anti-BDS and even passed laws against it. What does that tell you?

Rule of Law is for little people. The Power has Rule of Rule. And if American People, along with their politicians, seem to schizo, well, what does one expect? They get their info from J-Media that feed that lies 24/7.

What is often called 'American' is processed mindset, like yellow American singles is bogus processed 'cheese food'. Because handful of industries control all the media that beam same signals to over 300 million TV sets in the US, 'Americanism' is processed mind-food. We need more organic minds. Too many minds have been processed and re-processed by Great Mind Grinder of J-Media.

The Scalpel > , Website August 9, 2017 at 9:51 pm GMT

AB's 10 recommendations remind me of the beauty pageant contestant answering the question about what she intended to do ."promote world peace".

Actually the beauty queen is being more sincere and realistic. AB's points are very nice sounding, but he gives us no idea how realistically, he or anyone could achieve them and we are left with the feeling that he is just grandstanding. Like the beauty queen, he knows that he will never do much of anything concrete to further these goals, not even if his life or his son' life, depended on it.

DYiFC > , August 10, 2017 at 10:04 am GMT

Well said. I agree – Trump is a symptom of the underlying problems in this country.

Stogumber > , August 12, 2017 at 5:49 am GMT

"Without the Cold War, what's the point of being an American?"

Well, Updike speaks from the position of a "universalist"? Did he ever consider that being an American may not mean standing up for universal ideas, but simply caring for one's own children and grandchildren? But even from a universalist position the answer seems simple now – not for Bacevich, but for me. The United States are singled out and unique w.r.t. their First Amendment. Whereas all other Western countries have succumbed to Bolshevist propaganda and have undermined freedom of speech, the "Americans" are the only ones to stand up for it. Why, even Damore may win a lawsuit against Google.

Carlton Meyer > , Website August 14, 2017 at 4:50 am GMT

Whoops Colonel, you forgot to add slashing military spending to your list. The USA could cut its military budget in half and still spend more than Russia, Iran, North Korea, and China combined. Trump's insane push for more military spending undermines his effort at cutting domestic programs to balance the budget. Yet Jimmy Dore explains that most Democrats voted boost the military budget even more than Trump!

It is unfair to depict Trump as a bumpkin. He graduated from an excellent university and used a few million dollars from Dad's seed money to become a billionaire. Moreover, he defied all odds to become President of the USA. I challenge all his brilliant critics to run for President in 2020 to prove that is simple.

LarryS > , August 14, 2017 at 4:59 am GMT

@Robert Magill The US Constitution would have to be amended to eliminate the Electoral College by 3/4 of the states ratifying the amendment. The smaller states would never vote to eliminate their role in electing the president. Nor should they. My respect for Bacevich is waning.

anonymous > , Disclaimer August 14, 2017 at 7:05 am GMT

As for militarized American global leadership, it has indeed resulted in various bad actors meeting richly deserved fates. Goodbye, Saddam. Good riddance, Osama.

Goodbye Saddam?? The implication being that all the death and destruction was somehow worth it?? You scum, of the most evil *beep* nation on earth! A pox on all of you.

The Alarmist > , August 14, 2017 at 8:07 am GMT

"First, abolish the Electoral College. Doing so will preclude any further occurrence of the circumstances that twice in recent decades cast doubt on the outcome of national elections and thereby did far more than any foreign interference to undermine the legitimacy of American politics."

Yeah, let's trade the consensus of a nation of local communities for the tyranny of the (bi-coastal) majority. I might give up the EC, however, if the system was replaced by gladiatorial combat to the death for all who want the job, or, if we're sticking to a two-party system, the decision can come by pistols at dawn (Good Morning America can't get the nod I hate that Roker chap, and I don't think Megan Kelly should be anywhere near selection of a President). Real skin in the game, so to say.

Yeah, bring back the draft. Military service only. We won't end senseless wars unless many more of our young people actually experience them, and that's not going to happen if they are picking up litter or emptying bed pans.

More money for public education? We've been doing that for years dude, and we get worse results as we spend more. There's already too much money in public education. College for all is a mistake, and in gen snowflake, tell me who isn't deserving. How about serious testing for results and beating for those who do not achieve them?

Income equality sounds nice, but it's never been had anywhere by taxation. It takes a certain societal moderation and modesty requiring our ruling elites to not want to be so conspicuous in their consumption (this in the age of the Rich Kids of Instagram) and to share the wealth through employment and good wages to their fellow citizens. Good luck with that ever gracing our shores.

Stop yakking about the pseudoscience nay the religion of climate change. Plant some more trees and take a couple aspirin. Add the costs of global wars for resources to the cost of gas, which will spike it to $6 per gallon and dissuade a lot of unnecessary driving.

Require all candidates for Federal elective office to be physically neutered, and forbid any of their progeny for at least three generations as well as any immediate relations closer than fourth cousin from holding any position of honor, elective office, or Federal employment whatsoever.

Priss Factor > , Website August 14, 2017 at 9:20 am GMT

Trump or no Trump, things would be much saner without Jewish globalist pressure.

I never liked Obama, but I don't think he has personal animus against Russia, Syria, Iran, Libya, or Palestinians. But given who was looking over his shoulder, he had to make things difficult for those nations, and that is why leaders of those nations and Obama came to hate one another. As for North Korea, much of the tensions wouldn't exist if US hadn't threatened or invaded 'axis of evil' nations and forced S. Korea to carry out joint exercises to prepare for invasion.

Same with Trump. I seriously doubt if Trump has personal animus against Syrians, Russians, Iranians, Palestinians, and etc. But who is looking over his shoulder? So, he has to hate the same people that Obama had to hate.

In the US, politicians must hate according to Jewish neurosis. And that's the problem. We don't have autonomy of likes and dislikes. Like dogs, we have to like or hate what our master likes or hates. And Jewish Globalists are elites. The great evil of America is we are forced to HATE whatever Jewish globalists Hate. It is a culture of Hate. Ironically, the biggest haters accuse others of hate.

Priss Factor > , Website August 14, 2017 at 9:49 am GMT

Jeff & Gerald Celente – The Trump Presidential Freak Show

Priss Factor > , Website August 14, 2017 at 10:25 am GMT

Stephen Cohen on why we need close cooperation with Russia.

A new kind of terrorism in aftermath of state collapse in Middle East.

But it seems new sanctions will totally derail any sane policy.

Reactionary Utopian > , August 14, 2017 at 11:05 am GMT

Most of Mr. Bacevich's piece was quite good. Then we got to the Ten-Point Program. A bold, revolutionary program calling for more of how we got here. What the hell?

Wizard of Oz > , August 14, 2017 at 12:10 pm GMT

@LarryS The US Constitution would have to be amended to eliminate the Electoral College by 3/4 of the states ratifying the amendment. The smaller states would never vote to eliminate their role in electing the president. Nor should they. My respect for Bacevich is waning. Yes, it is interesting how smaller states in federations show that they understand and will hold on to their leverage even when , as in Australia, the people themselves vote on constitutional change.

But why would eliminating the Electoral College allow presidentlal elections to be decided by the popular vote in California and NY as someone suggested? Aren't the number of electoral college votes adjusted quite promptly in proportion to population changes?

Wizard of Oz > , August 14, 2017 at 12:20 pm GMT

Here's an anti Imperial Presidency policy for the author to consider and perhaps endorse .

1. Move towards the constitutiobal monarchy or limited presidency parliamentary model by strengthening the H of R and relying on ordinary human ambition to forward the project;

2. Specifically extend Congressional terms from 2 years to 4 (and perhaps provide lots of public financing and free publicity to diminish thevcorruption by donors)

3. Enhance the role of Majority leader – indeed facilitate his forming his own Cabinet – and restrict the amending of budget bills submitted (as the main ones would have to be) by the leader of the majority – or his nominated Finance spokesperson..

Wizard of Oz > , August 14, 2017 at 12:44 pm GMT

@The Alarmist Aren't the votes in the Electoral College quite promptly adjusted for population changes?

The Alarmist > , August 14, 2017 at 1:40 pm GMT

@Wizard of Oz To some extent, but since each state has at least one Representative and two Senators, there is a bias toward political geography that is difficult to overcome by population. This is a good thing.

The Alarmist > , August 14, 2017 at 1:51 pm GMT

@Wizard of Oz Sorry, should have connected the dots each state's Electors total the same as their Congressional delegations in House and Senate, and House is capped at 435.

bliss_porsena > , August 14, 2017 at 1:57 pm GMT

Eleven: write more articles with never-can-be-done lists until the whole aberrant construct cracks wide open.

anonymous > , Disclaimer August 14, 2017 at 2:14 pm GMT

@Wizard of Oz Only with respect to the EC votes corresponding to the number of House Representatives. From Wikipedia:

"Each state chooses electors, totaling in number to that state's combined total of senators and representatives."

Each state – irrespective of population – has two senators, so this protects citizens of less populous states from those in, e.g., California. Part of the Constitutional bargain that makes for a republic as opposed to a national democracy.

Were you sincerely unaware of this?

Wizard of Oz > , August 14, 2017 at 2:47 pm GMT

@The Alarmist Sorry, should have connected the dots ... each state's Electors total the same as their Congressional delegations in House and Senate, and House is capped at 435. Yes, the effect of adding in the senators is substantial. The two biggest (Democrat) states add just 4 out of 543 to their basic Congressional weighting while the 48 other states add 96/543. Thus 17.6 per cent against just an extra 0.7 per cent.
Not even Texas would think of supporting the abolition of the Electoral College. A pity yhe excellent author should be so sloppy as not at least to acknowledge which items on his wish list are pure fantasy.

Logan > , August 14, 2017 at 3:00 pm GMT

"Nominally, the Constitution assigns responsibilities and allocates prerogatives to three co-equal branches of government."

Oh, dear, I do get tired of this meme.

No, the Constitution does not create "three co-equal branches of government," no matter how often the phrase is repeated.

The Constitution establishes a legislative branch that, whenever it is sufficiently united and desirous, has absolute power over the other two branches.

The Congress can remove any member of the other two branches from office, among other powers, but the countervailing power of the other two branches over Congress, at least per the Constitution, is very limited indeed.

In most republics and constitutional monarchies, the executive branch has a number of ways to influence the legisilature, including calling new elections when desired. Our Constitution has none of that.

Under the Constitution, the Congress is not co-equal. Its supreme.

Logan > , August 14, 2017 at 3:17 pm GMT

@gustafus " as we import more and more of the LOW IQ 3rd world – education will be more about the reasons we don't boink our children siblings and cousins"

Nahh, that would be imposing our Eurocentric values on their vibrant cultures.

Wizard of Oz > , August 14, 2017 at 3:37 pm GMT

@Joe Franklin That sounds like another valid reason to stick with the EC.

Wizard of Oz > , August 14, 2017 at 3:40 pm GMT

@Logan And that's why it's ownership by the donors is so destructive.

Jus' Sayin'... > , August 14, 2017 at 4:09 pm GMT

@Robert Magill Any citizen of the USA and/or student of its history who writes in the same essay both that he is a conservative and that he favors abolishing the Electoral College is either a fool, an unprincipled knave, or most likely both.

Olorin > , August 14, 2017 at 4:36 pm GMT

@Robert Magill I came in to make the same point and will add that it would be effectively only two metropolitan areas–LA and NYC.

Whoever would control those cities politically would control the nation politically, economically, and socially the way Chicago's elites control much of Wisconsin (to use an example recently discussed at iSteve).

The republic would be ripe for division into two coastal demesnes vying with each other for power, resources, and serfs (both in the coastal hives and the "flyover states").

What is undermining the legitimacy of American politics isn't the United States Constitution. It is the countless billions of dollars spend on election campaigning each year. That includes all corollary expenditures, as on media buys and polling.

Not the kind of polling that involves voting. The kind of polling that Nate Silver does.

Election campaigns engineer infiltration of the public culture at every level–federal, state, county, municipal, and local–by divisive discourse and methods. These originally were developed so that merchants could differentiate and sell to the masses soap and junk food brands. Not even the commodities themselves–but brands of them.

Political campaigning rolls up the worst elements of advertising, PR, propaganda, and opinion research into one unending tsunami of hostility, division, manufactured conflict, false equivalencies, forced choices, and sneering tearing-down of what others believe, want, or have built.

The people who create political campaigns for a living–with all the corollary products that go with that, including the candidate himself/herself–are, like the people who communicate those, among the biggest parasites in the republic. They literally create positions, opinions, and ideas, then go out and create the demand for them by whatever means it takes. They produce nothing of value. They siphon off value and resources and set the conditions where by organic excellence is drowned in a sea of mass communications.

If the Electoral College were demolished tomorrow, they would have even more unfettered access to more billions of dollars as Candidate Cool Ranch Dorito vied for an influential and lucrative sinecure with Candidate Salty Crunchy Triangular Fried Corn Thing.

And thanks to Citizens United, money is free speech, and free speech means carefully selected, constructed, massaged, spun, and polled speech.

Keeping the campaign-media-finance industrial complex operating is all that matters to these people. Sounds like Bacevich is one of them. Members of the Pontificating Caste usually are. The Constitution is a barrier to their aspirations.

As it was designed to be.

Linda Green > , August 14, 2017 at 4:45 pm GMT

The author did a decent job of describing the zeitgeist. But his list of 10 big government solutions is a riot! The solution is a return to human liberty and acceptance of the reality that all politics that matter to people is local. But our owners don't like local, they like global, they like universal, they claim to be supporters of diversity but their diversity if they have their way looks exactly the same everywhere you go – wow, how diverse. You can be in any major metropolitan area in the US these days and you find it has the same chain store signage dominating the landscape, the same stories in the newspapers, the same ideological megaphones spouting (((their))) doctrines to the masses, the same conformity of expressed opinions (don't say what you really think if you want to keep your job at xyz corp), the same. And unbeknownst to most Americans who are quick to thank servicemen for "their service", their actual service is that when are elites have finally won the entire world will be indistinguishable like US metropolitan areas are today. There is not a big government solution to these issues, big xxx is the problem. The real question at least in my mind is if our owners would allow pockets of American style, liberty based pockets to emerge?

If we could find responsible enough men to do it, we could take back monetary sovereignty from the federal reserve and start a Bank of America. We have our politicians beginning to sell off the commons (highways for example) to investors. We can fund that by letting some money creation occur by being earned into existence rather than loaned into existence. This is explicitly disallowed in the FEDs charter, and it is not for certain we can find men responsible enough to handle this task without problems nor is it certain that global finance would not retaliate. But we have a lot of infrastructure that needs upgrading and maintenance. This would allow some level of exodus from the metros back to Mayberry if there were jobs. We need a small effective government that has a long term plan of how we are going to maintain our infrastructure. Presently the elected children in Washington, short sighted immature bunch they are, put construction money for bridges in the back of bills recognizing a particular day as "insert bullshit day here day" to make their fellow child go along with the pork they put is some other garbage bill. This is an awful way to run a country and the chickens have come home and are roosting. Let the metros continue their present course of forced conformity via peer shaming and propaganda.

Flavius > , August 14, 2017 at 5:44 pm GMT

Alarm bells going off in the night? How about Bill Clinton? Robert Dole? Al Gore? George W Bush? How about the stupendously unqualified mirage of Presidential gravitas, Barrack Obama? his opponents, the snarling ignoramus from Arizona, John McCain? the leaden corporatist Mitt Romney. Perhaps we are to understand these names that the Colonel leaves unmentioned as constituting the "slouching:" But the reason we have arrived at Mar-a-Lago is that the terminally corrupt Democratic Party chose as their candidate the terminally corrupt, stupendously unqualified former President's wife. The foresight of our founding Father's saved us from that miserable fate, thank you US Constitution.
But lest we become too nostalgic for a time when our co-equal legislative branch had members who could assert themselves against the stooge of the moment who the people had installed in the White House, let us take a moment to ponder the stupendous stupidity of our current body that just recently, with near unanimity, chose to lump Russia in with Iran and North Korea on its sanctions bill while producing no evidence of any kind to justify its measure.

Alden > , August 14, 2017 at 5:46 pm GMT

@Joe Franklin Vote fraud is not necessary in California. I'm the only person I know who votes Republican.

Logan > , August 14, 2017 at 6:00 pm GMT

@Wizard of Oz Quite right. Though the whole thing started when the "real" job of the congressman became re-election. Once that was internalized, the rest was pretty much inevitable. As long as the government is heavily involved with businesses, determining not only their profit rate but perhaps whether they even survive, they will continue efforts to influence government decisions. Limiting contribution's primary effect, I suspect, would be to drive the influence-buying underground.

The solution, of course, is to get the government out of business and indeed everything else to the extent possible.

[Aug 11, 2017] Colluding with Foreign Spies--It Apparently Ain't the Trumps by Publius Tacitus

Notable quotes:
"... " So here's what I want you to tell every politician: If you get a call from somebody suggesting that a foreign government wants to help you by disparaging your opponent, tell us all to call the FBI." ..."
"... https://youtu.be/VzawbjQc4iM?t=1m34s ..."
"... What did McCain do? He twice received material generated by a foreign intelligence operative and passed this along as if it was valuable, verified intelligence. Here is the proof, thanks to Rowan Scarborough of the Washington Times . ..."
"... McCain is not the only one guilty here. The work of Fusion GPS was paid for by unnamed Democrats (and one unnamed Republican). And this is not the only instance of collusion with a foreign intelligence organization. Hillary Clinton and her campaign reportedly consorted with Ukrainian operatives: ..."
"... Ukrainian government officials tried to help Hillary Clinton and undermine Trump by publicly questioning his fitness for office. They also disseminated documents implicating a top Trump aide in corruption and suggested they were investigating the matter, only to back away after the election. And they helped Clinton's allies research damaging information on Trump and his advisers, a Politico investigation found. ..."
"... We can continue to be distracted by new intelligence about shenanigans during the presidential election until Trump's first term is up. That is the plan. ..."
"... Which reminds me what about all those dirty little wars, Libya, Syria, Yemen, etc that Obama and the Clintonist queen involved the US in on the basis of an AUM signed back in 2001, and how was Gadaffi, Assad and the Houthis, all sworn enemies of the jihadists, "associated force" of those responsible for 9/11. ..."
"... I continue to be baffled by the Trump Administration's response to the continued attacks by former and possibly current high officials in the IC. There seems to be no overt investigation by the AG. They seem to be just reacting as the media go to town manufacturing hysteria. ..."
"... In Britain, when the intelligence services make an unholy mess of things, it is usually possible to find the right kind of judge, or former senior official, to apply the appropriate degree of 'whitewash'. It was Lord Hutton's application of a lavish quantity of this substance to the Joint Intelligence Committee, MI6, and the Blair Government in his inquiry into the death of Dr David Kelly which played a non-trivial role to reducing the BBC to its present status as a kind of imitation of the Brezhnev-era Radio Moscow. ..."
"... The acceptance of patently fabricated evidence by Owen took the 'whitewash' process to new heights. It would seem to me unlikely that those involved are optimistic that, by selecting the right kind of judge and organising another propaganda 'barrage' on the BBC and other outlets, they can contain the damage done by the lawsuits brought over the dossier. But I could be wrong. ..."
"... The latter [Russophobia] is an effort to assert US power over the legitimate interests of a nuclear-armed Russia, to continue to act provocatively against Russia, and to kill any attempts at a rapprochement. Birtherism crossed a line of political rhetoric, but the efforts of neocons in tying Trump's hands regarding peaceful relations with Russia is crossing a far more dangerous line. ..."
"... Birtherism was one of many things that discredited Trump as a huckster from receiving my vote. Warmongering, among other matters, also disqualified Hillary. ..."
Aug 11, 2017 | turcopolier.typepad.com

When it comes to meeting with foreign spies to dish dirt on a Presidential candidate (or a President elect), John McCain is more at fault than anyone connected to Donald Trump. McCain was directly involved in spreading unverified slanderous material regarding President-elect Donald Trump as he consorted with operatives linked to a foreign government--in this case, the United Kingdom.

This should give Lindsay Graham pause after watching his his exchange with FBI nominee Christopher Wray at Wednesday's Senate Judiciary hearing. Graham, who rhetorically fell on a fainting couch overwhelmed by outrage from the news that an obscure Russian lawyer had sought a meeting with Donald Trump Jr. in order to dish dirt on Hillary Clinton, admonished the FBI nominee to deal harshly with his colleagues on the following :

" So here's what I want you to tell every politician: If you get a call from somebody suggesting that a foreign government wants to help you by disparaging your opponent, tell us all to call the FBI." https://youtu.be/VzawbjQc4iM?t=1m34s

But Donald Trump Jr. is not guilty of doing this. Instead, it is Senator John McCain. He is the one who was fooling around with a foreign intelligence organization.

What did McCain do? He twice received material generated by a foreign intelligence operative and passed this along as if it was valuable, verified intelligence. Here is the proof, thanks to Rowan Scarborough of the Washington Times .

Aleksej Gubarev , a Cypriot based chief executive of the network solutions firm XBT Holdings, filed suit against Christopher Steele and Orbis Business Intelligence Ltd, for defamation over their role in the publication of an unproven dossier (which appeared in Buzzfeed) on President Donald Trump's purported activities involving Russia and allegations of Russian interference during last year's U.S. election.

The businessman, Aleksej Gubarev , claims he and his companies were falsely linked in the dossier to the Russia-backed computer hacking of Democratic Party figures. Gubarev , 36, also is seeking unspecified damages from Buzzfeed and its top editor, Ben Smith, in a parallel lawsuit filed in Miami. Lawyers for Christopher Steele and Orbis Business Intelligence in the United Kingdom filed a response with the British court. Rowan Scarborough obtained a copy of the document and posted it on-line in April. The defense document is both illuminating and damning (I don't know how I missed this when it came out in April). This is like a statement under oath and it presents the following facts: 1. Orbis Business Intelligence was engaged by Fusion GPS sometime in early June 2016 to prepare a series of confidential memorandum based on intelligence concerning Russian efforts to influence the U.S. Presidential election process and links between Russia and Donald Trump (the first memo was dated 20 June 2016). 2. Fusion GPS is run by three former Wall Street Journal reporters: Glenn Simpson; Tom Catan; and Peter Fritsch. ( According to the New York Times, Fusion GPS was originally hired by a Republican donor – who has not been publicly identified – to dig up dirt on Trump in 2015. After Trump won the nomination, the firm began working with Democrats and honed in on Trump's links to Russia.) 3. Senator John McCain, accompanied by David Kramer (a Senior Director at Senator McCain's Institute for International Leadership), met in London with an Associate of Orbis, former British Ambassador Sir Andrew Wood, to arrange a subsequent meeting with Christopher Steele in order to read the now infamous Steele Dossier. 4. David Kramer and Christopher Steele met in Surrey on 28 November 2016, where Kramer was briefed on the contents of the memos. 5. Once Senator McCain and David Kramer returned to the United States, arrangements were made for Fusion GPS to provide Senator McCain hard copies of the memoranda. 6. After Donald Trump was elected, Christopher Steele prepared an additional memorandum (dated 13 December 2016) that made the following claims:

[Note--Michael Cohen denies he was ever in Prague.]

7. Christopher Steele passed a copy of the December memo to a senior UK Government national security official and to Fusion GPS (via encrypted email) with the instruction to give a hard copy to Senator McCain via David Kramer.

Sometime between December 14, 2016 and December 31, 2016, Senator McCain passed this salacious material to FBI director, James Comey.

As I pointed out in my previous piece ( Trump Jr. Emails Prove No Collusion . . . ), the Steele Dossier now stands completely discredited because the Trump Jr. emails provide prima facie evidence that there was no regular, sustained contact with Kremlin operatives. If there had been then there was no need to meet with an unknown lawyer peddling anti-Hillary material that, per the Steele Dossier, already had been delivered to the Trump team.

The role of Fusion GPS in this whole sordid affair needs to be thoroughly investigated. Circumstantial evidence opens them to charges of facilitating and enabling sedition. What they did appears to go beyond conventional opposition research and dirty tricks. Spreading a lie that Donald Trump and his team are Russian operatives crosses a line and, as we have witnessed over the last six months, roiled and disrupted the American political system.

McCain is not the only one guilty here. The work of Fusion GPS was paid for by unnamed Democrats (and one unnamed Republican). And this is not the only instance of collusion with a foreign intelligence organization. Hillary Clinton and her campaign reportedly consorted with Ukrainian operatives:

Ukrainian government officials tried to help Hillary Clinton and undermine Trump by publicly questioning his fitness for office. They also disseminated documents implicating a top Trump aide in corruption and suggested they were investigating the matter, only to back away after the election. And they helped Clinton's allies research damaging information on Trump and his advisers, a Politico investigation found.

You can read the full story here . The hysteria on the part of Democrats over alleged Russian meddling and collusion with the Trumps shows a growing potential for blowback. As more actual evidence emerges of anti-trumpets receiving intelligence and sharing that intelligence in underhanded back channels, the greater the risk that public attention will hone in on the real actions as opposed to unsubstantiated allegations. Such a development would leave the Democrats very vulnerable and very exposed.

IssacNewton -> iowa steve... , 17 July 2017 at 08:21 PM

I agree that Birtherism was an unethical strategy (e.g., when did you stop molesting children). I would point out the Hillary Clinton used this as an issue against Obama in 2008. She published photos of him in native african garb and had her surrogetes us this against up through the Democrat Convention. It was a strategy of both Trump and Clinton.
I'veBeenANaughtyBoy , 16 July 2017 at 06:07 AM
Slightly OT but mentioned by Steve & Iowa Steve above. I watched an hour or so long You Tube video 3 or 4 months ago about how Sheriff Joe Arpio (??sp) had got a couple of investigators to look into the Obama birth Cert brouhaha & to try & put it to bed, one way or another. The result was what I considered to be (I am not any expert in document forensics) a pretty convincing explanation of how the Birth Cert that the White House put forward was a forgery & how it had been falsified.

They even had tracked down (& named the woman) the birth cert that Obamas had been based on. It was convincing.

The other thing that sold the investigation to me as being genuine was there was nothing - nothing, in the MSM about it. I took that to mean that they didn't want to try & debunk it as it would attract attention to the video. I didn't pay over much attention to the scandal back when, & only watched the vid as I was laid up that day. Since then I've also come across a "Barry Soetoro" foreign student I.D. card from Columbia U with a young Obama pictured on it.

DianaLC , 14 July 2017 at 02:30 PM
We can argue the merits of a Trump presidency all we want. We can continue to be distracted by new intelligence about shenanigans during the presidential election until Trump's first term is up. That is the plan.

I understand that foreign governments -- and probably mostly Russia -- try desperately to influence our elections in their favor. Just as I understand that our government officials do the same in foreign elections. It's disgusting behavior for someone who really, really believes the high principles on which our government was founded. I admit it: I am a Pollyanna in that regard.

But I also KNOW my tendencies to be more idealistic than realistic in regard to human nature. At my age, the reality of human nature has caused me more heartbreak than I care to remember.

Therefore, I have to prioritize my worries. And so, here again, I am with PT on this issue. McCain is the bigger jerk. In my opinion, he can't stand it that more Americans voted for Trump than voted for McCain (this American included--though I did hold my nose and vote for McCain simply because my stomach would not take voting for BHO. I was not a birther, but I was fully aware of things in regard to his past that I didn't like and his ideology that I despised and his friendships with people I found reprehensible. I could go on, but won't).

The people I admire the most are, in many cases, people who did champion Trump from the beginning. I was originally flabbergasted by that fact. I was, and still am, a Cruz person. But.....I am also an American and do put much faith in the everyday, working, Americans who live in the Middle, where I live. These are truly the "salt of the earth" and the "light of the world" people. Their votes were given mostly because, I think, Trump declared that he wanted to "drain the swamp." We knew what that meant. We know now that avoiding the machinations of swamp people is harder than we might have guessed. So I am willing to give the Trump boys some grace, but not the smarmy "bomb, bomb, bomb. Bomb, bomp Iran" McCain.

Nothing came from this juvenile and inept attempt to "collude." Let's forget it, get the swamp drained and the leaks plugged and get on with making campaign promises come true. Take the NYT and WaPo copies and find some way to use them for good: birdcage liners, shredded packaging stuffing, even cat litter. Let CNN become a memory as you avoid watching it or any news story about it. Heck, don't even watch Fox except to get the news without listening to the commentary. Write your senators and representatives about your views of the issues; then go on with leading good American lives, while saying your daily prayers to the only One who is in charge.

Anna -> David Habakkuk ... , 14 July 2017 at 01:37 PM
"Sir Robert Owen's report into the death of Alexander Litvinenko is a flagrant cover-up."

This is in addition to attracting more attention to Magnitsky Act (and to a documentary by Nekrasov), and, by association, to another important documentary, "Two hundreds years together" by Solzhenitsyn. Both authors used to be the darlings of the west for their harsh critique of the Soviet Union (by Solzhenitsyn) and Putin (by Nekrasov).

No publishing house in the US and UK dares to publish "Two hundreds years together," and no western country dares to show "The Magnitsky Act – Behind The Scenes," because the presented facts are not fitting the ziocons' sensibilities.

blowback -> Fred... , 14 July 2017 at 12:18 PM
What subversion is that? Nothing came of Donald Jr's stupidity but there were real effects from the Fusion GPS garbage. As for Trump making gooey eyes at Putin, it was one part of his election platform that Trump was clear and open about and as the president pretty much gets to decide foreign policy, rather than McCain, Graham, the Clintonists, etc. so what?

Which reminds me what about all those dirty little wars, Libya, Syria, Yemen, etc that Obama and the Clintonist queen involved the US in on the basis of an AUM signed back in 2001, and how was Gadaffi, Assad and the Houthis, all sworn enemies of the jihadists, "associated force" of those responsible for 9/11.

Greco , 14 July 2017 at 10:49 AM
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-4690834/Don-Trump-Jr-lawyer-linked-dirty-dossier-firm.html

Apparently the Russian lawyer who met with Don Jr was lobbying on behalf of a Russian oligarch who was sanctioned as a result of the Magnitsky Act. That same oligarch was also faced with a $230 million fine for money laundering. He tried to cut a deal back in 2015 whereupon he would act as an informant to US authorities. The $230 million fine was later reduced to only $6 million days before his case was set for trial this past May.

Sam Peralta -> David Habakkuk ... , 14 July 2017 at 10:14 AM
David

" In Britain, when the intelligence services make an unholy mess of things, it is usually possible to find the right kind of judge, or former senior official, to apply the appropriate degree of 'whitewash'. "

This is exactly what breeds cynicism. I don't believe it is any different in the US as the judiciary always gives a pass when the "state secrets" defense is mounted. This is a perfect legal doctrine as it can be used to cover up all kinds of malfeasance and misfeasance. There's a reason why support exists for whistleblowers like Snowden and Wikileaks among the general public.

What was the reaction of the average person in Britain to the Lord Hutton "inquiry"?

I continue to be baffled by the Trump Administration's response to the continued attacks by former and possibly current high officials in the IC. There seems to be no overt investigation by the AG. They seem to be just reacting as the media go to town manufacturing hysteria.

David Habakkuk , 14 July 2017 at 09:31 AM
PT,

There is a further lawsuit against BuzzFeed, brought by the Alfa Group oligarchs, Mikhail Fridman, Petr Aven, and German Khan. The summons, dated 26 May 2017 is at

http://www.courthousenews.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/05/buzzfeed.pdf

Also, a report on 'McClatchy' on 11 July, entitled 'John McCain faces questions in Trump-Russia dossier case', linked to the response of Steele and Orbis dated 18 May to the request by Gubarev's lawyers for further information in response to the 'Defence' in the London suit to which you linked.

(See http://www.mcclatchydc.com/news/nation-world/national/article160622854.html .)

Whether the fact that the lawyer who prepared the response, Nicola Cain, was until recently a senior barrister at the BBC is of any relevance I do not know.

There is a lot in this which is not at the moment making a great deal of sense. It is absolutely basic journalistic 'tradecraft' to get a piece like the dossier 'lawyered' before publication. The question in my day would have been 'is it a fair business risk?'

A lawyer competent in the law of defamation – as Ms Cain clearly is – would I think have almost certainly said that the memorandum on the Alfa oligarchs was in no way a 'fair business risk.'

Moreover, it is hard to see any compelling reason why it should not have simply been omitted from the published version of the dossier – particularly as this would not have materially reduced the 'information operations' impact of the document.

As to the reference to Gubarev, a simple redaction would have reduced the risk of his suing to zero, and again, would not have materially reduced the impact of the dossier.

Indeed, even if the BuzzFeed journalists are amateurish, former WSJ journalists like those who run Fusion – and one of the company's partners, Thomas Catan, is also a former 'Financial Times' journalist – should have been aware they were on a sticky wicket without needing to consult a lawyer.

At the moment, both sets of legal proceedings are a hostage to fortune, for many reasons, including the possibility that they could make people for the first time actually notice that Sir Robert Owen's report into the death of Alexander Litvinenko is a flagrant cover-up.

Although the claims made about Steele's involvement in that affair are a hopeless mess of contradictions, what would seem reasonably clear is that he was a key figure in orchestrating proceedings. (Whether Fusion were involved, at the American end, is an interesting question.)

Perhaps unsurprisingly, we end up with a situation where people are stabbing each other in the back. So Steele is trying to rescue himself, by suggesting that the memoranda were not intended for publication at all, and that the reason for their publication was a violation of a confidentiality agreement by Fusion.

Meanwhile, the former British Moscow Ambassador Sir Andrew Wood has already directly contradicted the 'Defence', claiming that, contrary to what it says, he was never an 'associate' of Orbis.

(See http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2017/06/09/comey-testimony-leaves-questions-unanswered-about-anti-trump-dossier.html .)

In Britain, when the intelligence services make an unholy mess of things, it is usually possible to find the right kind of judge, or former senior official, to apply the appropriate degree of 'whitewash'. It was Lord Hutton's application of a lavish quantity of this substance to the Joint Intelligence Committee, MI6, and the Blair Government in his inquiry into the death of Dr David Kelly which played a non-trivial role to reducing the BBC to its present status as a kind of imitation of the Brezhnev-era Radio Moscow.

The acceptance of patently fabricated evidence by Owen took the 'whitewash' process to new heights. It would seem to me unlikely that those involved are optimistic that, by selecting the right kind of judge and organising another propaganda 'barrage' on the BBC and other outlets, they can contain the damage done by the lawsuits brought over the dossier. But I could be wrong.

Anna -> LeaNder... , 14 July 2017 at 09:21 AM
More on the same, this time on the infamous Magnitsky Act: https://consortiumnews.com/2017/07/13/how-russia-gate-met-the-magnitsky-myth/#comment-274252
Fred -> steve... , 14 July 2017 at 08:49 AM
Steve,

"Just can't bring myself to get worked up over this..."

Subverting the constitutional order is a-ok if the guy duly elected is a jerk. What a wonderful standard of conduct.

Anna -> steve... , 13 July 2017 at 11:32 PM
The whole anti-Trump bruha-ha has been about his alleged collusion with a foreign government. Here we have a documented case of a collusion of clintonistas with the foreign intelligence organization (UK) and foreign government (Ukraine). The "progressives" (including McCain and the most rabid ziocons) have been waling like sirens about alleged "treason." Well. It seems that their wish was heard.
This is not about Trump. This is about the law.

"...if there was any line, it was crossed a long time ago."

Sigh. Obama's "we scam" was a powerful instrument of breeding both lawlessness and cynicism. i

iowa steve -> steve... , 13 July 2017 at 10:46 PM
Yeah, Trump's birtherism was odious but I don't see the equivalence between that and the current Russiaphobia.

The latter [Russophobia] is an effort to assert US power over the legitimate interests of a nuclear-armed Russia, to continue to act provocatively against Russia, and to kill any attempts at a rapprochement. Birtherism crossed a line of political rhetoric, but the efforts of neocons in tying Trump's hands regarding peaceful relations with Russia is crossing a far more dangerous line.

Birtherism was one of many things that discredited Trump as a huckster from receiving my vote. Warmongering, among other matters, also disqualified Hillary.

[Aug 09, 2017] A hypothesis about Trump after-election malleability. It might be not deep state who forced him to shed his election campaign skin

Notable quotes:
"... Those with an interest in political economy will need to bend a little and admit that to some degree, beneath the workings of large macro forces of class and transnational capital, personal factors also play a role. Idiosyncratic characteristics, personality, and family life cannot be excluded. Nor can we ignore the role of the media, the new Cold War atmosphere that dominates US politics, the entrenched bureaucracy, the role of elite class prejudices, and a Trump support base divided into factions. ..."
"... Others have looked at institutional factors, such as Trump's insufficient number of loyal personnel with experience in government, to legislators acting as hostage-takers in holding up a large number of nominations. Another form of institutional explanation, one common in alternative media, is that there has been a coup by the "deep state". ..."
"... However, what they refer to as the deep state in most cases is just the state -- without anything particularly deep or mysterious about it. They refer to the CIA, the NSA, the FBI, the military, Congress, which are all very much the state . ..."
"... There were disturbing signs that Trump had begun to shed his campaign skin from the first days after his electoral triumph. First, there was his inexplicable need to ingratiate himself with his enemies, with those who worked assiduously to demonize him personally, and to demoralize and stigmatize his base. On prosecuting Hillary Clinton, after revelling in chants of "lock her up" at campaign rallies, after nearly promising she would be in jail if he were president, and explicitly vowing he would appoint a special prosecutor -- Trump instead told CBS' 60 Minutes on November 13: " I don't want to hurt them [the Clintons] , I don't want to hurt them. They're, they're good people. I don't want to hurt them". ..."
"... Trump misled people if he implied that his days of being a Clinton golf partner and patron were in the distant past. On Barack Obama, who had repeatedly mocked and berated him, Trump would then turn around and say about the man he said was virtually a founder of ISIS, "We get along. I don't know if he'll admit this, but he likes me. I like him ". When Trump visited Obama in the White House at the start of the transition, he seemed almost obsequious and unnecessarily generous in his flattery of Obama. ..."
Aug 09, 2017 | zeroanthropology.net

No single definitive explanation has been provided by any others analyzing Trump's malleability, and at best I am offering a draft of an explanation. What we have is a bundle of possible influences, pressures, constraints, mixed in with opportunism and class prejudice.

Those with an interest in political economy will need to bend a little and admit that to some degree, beneath the workings of large macro forces of class and transnational capital, personal factors also play a role. Idiosyncratic characteristics, personality, and family life cannot be excluded. Nor can we ignore the role of the media, the new Cold War atmosphere that dominates US politics, the entrenched bureaucracy, the role of elite class prejudices, and a Trump support base divided into factions.

Others have looked at institutional factors, such as Trump's insufficient number of loyal personnel with experience in government, to legislators acting as hostage-takers in holding up a large number of nominations. Another form of institutional explanation, one common in alternative media, is that there has been a coup by the "deep state".

However, what they refer to as the deep state in most cases is just the state -- without anything particularly deep or mysterious about it. They refer to the CIA, the NSA, the FBI, the military, Congress, which are all very much the state .

My concern is that "deep" state might mystify knowable actors and processes, shrouding them in a conspiratorial pall under which they operate with seemingly limitless power and with the independent ability to reproduce and fund themselves. Put another way, I have yet to read a "deep state" explanation for Trump's course changes, that does not sound like it is handing an alibi to Trump.

Next, let's review some of the main course changes charted by Trump after his electoral victory.

Trump's Deference to Obama and the Clintons

There were disturbing signs that Trump had begun to shed his campaign skin from the first days after his electoral triumph. First, there was his inexplicable need to ingratiate himself with his enemies, with those who worked assiduously to demonize him personally, and to demoralize and stigmatize his base. On prosecuting Hillary Clinton, after revelling in chants of "lock her up" at campaign rallies, after nearly promising she would be in jail if he were president, and explicitly vowing he would appoint a special prosecutor -- Trump instead told CBS' 60 Minutes on November 13: " I don't want to hurt them [the Clintons] , I don't want to hurt them. They're, they're good people. I don't want to hurt them".

Trump misled people if he implied that his days of being a Clinton golf partner and patron were in the distant past. On Barack Obama, who had repeatedly mocked and berated him, Trump would then turn around and say about the man he said was virtually a founder of ISIS, "We get along. I don't know if he'll admit this, but he likes me. I like him ". When Trump visited Obama in the White House at the start of the transition, he seemed almost obsequious and unnecessarily generous in his flattery of Obama.

Then there was the endless parade of visitors to Trump Tower in New York, invited by Trump as he possibly considered them for cabinet roles -- including the leader of the "Never Trump" campaign, and arch neoliberal Mitt Romney. Various familiar neoconservatives were also considered for key posts -- and each time a name was floated, such as that of Elliot Abrams, it was left to his legions of supporters to frantically try to change Trump's mind, well trained as they were by the experience of trying to clean up his messes over and over again during the campaign.

The uncertainty seemed to leave many of them desperate and worried about the strangely wavering Trump. In voting for Trump, his supporters certainly got neither what they asked for , nor what they deserved.

[Aug 09, 2017] Could the September 11 masterminds have imagined today's world by Rich Higgins

This is article by the person recently fired by McMaster for promoting "deep state" theory of the coup against Trump. The hypothesis that does makes some sense ;-).
But primitive anti-Islamism does provide much insights into the situation, In snot American Imperialism and neoliberal globalization it promotes and enforces by force (sometimes by force of arms) destined to produce blowback? the fact that some of it runs on Islamic banners is mostly immaterial. Also the USA is using political Islam for its purposes since the days of The USSR occupation of Afghanistan.
The fact that attempts to resist neoliberal globalization in Islamic world often decent into barbarity and head chopping should not obscure the reason political Islam obtained traction and the leading role of the USA in forming the current brand as a tool to make the USSR occupation of Afghanistan the second Vietnam for the USSR. In was a social experiment hatched in the USA political laboratories as a countervailing force for Soviet Bolshevism (which was a decaying ideology since mid 60th, in any case and eventually was overthrown by the forces of neoliberalism in the USSR space) that eventually went wrong. and this reckless political experimentation is hall mark of the USA foreign policy for a long time.
So is Muslim Brotherhood which definitely has deep connection with Obama administration was a threat, or a tool for the US led global neoliberal empire (Huma Aberdeen of Hillary Clinton email scandal fame is one example) ? Kind of universal door opener for neoliberal globalization for countries that try to resist it. This is the question.
Notable quotes:
"... Abidine Ben Ali would be removed in Tunisia, Ali Abdullah Saleh in Yemen and Moammar Quadaffi in Libya, the latter two states descending into civil war, as a Syrian civil war rages with no coherent U.S. strategy and no end in sight. ..."
"... A strategic reassessment of the entire combating terrorism effort that is free from politically correct nonsense is long overdue. The "Islam has nothing to do with terrorism" narratives have effectively shut down the intelligence process for the war in any meaningful sense. Sure, we CT officers could look at organizations and people and places, some of which had Islamic names, but we could never dig into the political and ideological reasons the enemy was attacking us!which is supposed to be the first order of business in any strategic threat assessment. ..."
Sep 09, 2016 | www.washingtontimes.com Washington Times

Picture a breakfast meeting on the morning of September 11, 2001 between Mullah Omar, Ayman al Zawahiri, and Osama bin Laden, the three leaders of al-Qaeda. While eating their yogurt and fruit, they discuss the successful September 9th assassination of Ahmed Shah Massoud and the imminent strikes in Washington and New York.

Could they have imagined that a short 15 years later:

The United States would be approximately $20 TRILLION in debt.

Iraq in sectarian civil war and Afghanistan under increasing Taliban (ISIS) control would both have Constitutions placing those Republics under Sharia Law, and U.S. ally Turkey would be moving quickly into the Muslim Brotherhood (MB) camp.

Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak would be removed from power in Egypt, replaced by the Muslim Brotherhood, then replaced by Abdel Fattah el-Sisi and the U.S. would support the MB.

Abidine Ben Ali would be removed in Tunisia, Ali Abdullah Saleh in Yemen and Moammar Quadaffi in Libya, the latter two states descending into civil war, as a Syrian civil war rages with no coherent U.S. strategy and no end in sight.

Nigeria, West Africa (Boko Haram) and Somalia (al Shahbab) under threat.

The Islamic Republic of Iran is on the road to nuclear weapons and receives $150 BILLION courtesy of the U.S. government while Saudi Arabia builds hundreds of Wahhabi mosques in Indonesia and in South America.

Nascent Islamic insurgencies in France, Italy, Germany, England, Belgium and other European countries fueled by millions of inassimilable Islamic immigrants who reside in "no-go zones" and who are flooding into Europe as well as the U.S. receiving social welfare benefits paid for by the citizens of those counties.

The Islamic State (ISIS) would be armed with American weapons and declare itself the Caliphate, spreading across the globe using videos of Christian beheadings and other atrocities broadcast on digital media to recruit thousands of jihadis worldwide, including open FBI cases in all 50 states.

U.S. presidential candidates from both political parties saying "the Islamic State is not Islamic" while U.S. and European patriotism is considered racism.

National Security officials are prohibited from developing a factual understanding of Islamic threat doctrines, preferring instead to depend upon 5th column Muslim Brotherhood cultural advisors.

Ideally, the team backs out quickly and moves off the target. This is called a tactical pause and that is basically what Donald Trump has proposed in the form of a halt on immigration.

After getting out of danger, the tactical team will do a reassessment of what happened. Was their information wrong? Did they go to the wrong house? Did somebody purposefully give them bad information? Can they call in an air strike? All of these things need to be considered.

A strategic reassessment of the entire combating terrorism effort that is free from politically correct nonsense is long overdue. The "Islam has nothing to do with terrorism" narratives have effectively shut down the intelligence process for the war in any meaningful sense. Sure, we CT officers could look at organizations and people and places, some of which had Islamic names, but we could never dig into the political and ideological reasons the enemy was attacking us!which is supposed to be the first order of business in any strategic threat assessment.

At present, Mr. Trump's proposed course of action pertaining to the terrorist threat is a tactical pause and a strategic reassessment. This proposal isn't rhetorical, alarmist or ill-conceived. This is smart tactics being applied to a strategic issue.

Rich Higgins is currently a DOD contractor. He formerly led several classified programs for Special Operations Command. He is the former Chair of Special Operations and Low Intensity Conflict at the National Defense University's College of International Security Affairs.

[Aug 09, 2017] Trump is Guilty, of Something by Andrew Levine

Notable quotes:
"... The Washington Post ..."
"... The New York Times ..."
"... ANDREW LEVINE is the author most recently of THE AMERICAN IDEOLOGY (Routledge) and POLITICAL KEY WORDS (Blackwell) as well as of many other books and articles in political philosophy. His most recent book is In Bad Faith: What's Wrong With the Opium of the People . He was a Professor (philosophy) at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and a Research Professor (philosophy) at the University of Maryland-College Park. He is a contributor to Hopeless: Barack Obama and the Politics of Illusion (AK Press). ..."
Aug 04, 2017 | www.counterpunch.org

Donald Trump is guilty of something, guilty as sin. Nobody outside his innermost circle knows yet what he is guilty of, and all the evidence is circumstantial. But guilty he surely is.

Is it that the Trump campaign colluded with the Russians to defeat Hillary Clinton? That is the story line that corporate media take for gospel truth. It is not out of the question that some Russians, some of whom had some connection with the Russian government, hacked into something. Even if they did, however, the Russian meddling story is ridiculously overblown – for reasons that are politically self-serving and irresponsibly, if not criminally, dangerous.

If catastrophic outcomes can somehow be avoided, that story will eventually go the way of Iraq's weapons of mass destruction. Before that happens, however, count on Vladimir Putin's affront to the "integrity" of American democracy being used to justify devastating, potentially catastrophic, diplomatic and military adventures ! in much the way that Saddam Hussein's WMDs once were.

By the time the dust settles, it will likely become clear that either there never was any reason to accept the party line on Russian meddling or that, even if there was something to it, there was never any reason to get all worked up about it.

This is not to say that "Russiagate" investigations should be opposed; quite to the contrary, there is every reason to support them fully.

If nothing else, investigations like Robert Mueller's and the ones underway in the House and Senate help keep Trump and the people he has brought into his administration from executing their nefarious agendas. Better yet, they are likely, before long, to bring Trump himself down – in ways that would make it harder for Trump's appointees and, when the times comes, for Mike Pence to turn many of the progressive gains of the past hundred or so years around.

But the fact remains: the election meddling furor is, at best, a red herring – about which all one can honestly say, for now, is: Who knows? Who cares?

Who knows – because the only reason to think that there was Russian meddling is that "the intelligence community" says there was. But, as everybody knows or ought to know, they are inveterate liars. Lying is in their genes and in their job descriptions.

Moreover, if history is a guide, they are just as likely to be wrong as to be right, even when they aren't deliberately telling lies.

Everybody also knows that the CIA in particular is not above politicizing intelligence when it serves some institutional purpose.

Who knows too – because liberal and not-so-liberal media have been pressing the case for Russian election meddling so vigorously for such a long time that the idea has become almost second nature to all but the most circumspect consumers of news. In cases like this, the wisest course of action usually is to become more, not less, skeptical.

It is hard to say which media outlet is the most at fault; the competition is so intense. The Washington Post and The New York Times are serious contenders, though it must be said, in fairness, that the Trump menace seems to have reignited a taste for real investigative reporting – about Trump ! in both of them. For that, one could forgive a great deal.

But they are still, on the whole, a servile lot. My vote for the worst of them all is MSNBC, with Joy Reid leading the way and Rachel (take twenty minutes to make a twenty second point) Maddow close behind.

A character in Edgar Allan Poe's "The System of Doctor Tarr and Professor Fether" advised believing only half of what one sees and nothing that one hears. Inasmuch as most of what one sees and hears about Russian meddling in the 2016 election are breathless repetitions of claims originating in the intelligence services, this is good advice in the case at hand.

The problem is not "fake news," news reports that are deliberately deceptive. Trump blathers on endlessly about that – in his usual, self-serving, bullying way – using the term so loosely as to void it of meaning. On this as on so much else, what comes out of Trump's mouth and what one reads in his tweets is sheer nonsense.

It is true, of course, that, under his aegis and inspiration, there has been an up-tick in deliberately false news stories, mainly in "alt-right" media outlets. But there is little, if any, genuinely fake (deliberately false) news in mainstream media. This side of Fox News, and sometimes even there, most journalists do try to maintain journalistic standards. They are not pathological liars, little Donald Trumps.

What they are, wittingly or not, are propagandists – in the sense discussed long ago by Noam Chomsky and Ed Herman in Manufacturing Consent (reprint edition, Pantheon, 2002). Ï

Through the workings of the several mechanisms described in that book, they fashion and reinforce narratives, story lines, that accord with the interests of the owners of the corporations they work for and, when the need arises, with the interests of the entirety of what C. Wright Mills called the "power structure." At the same time, they derogate and marginalize counter-narratives that have, or could have, effects detrimental to the interests of the people and institutions they serve.

Their express intention, of course, is to report the news, not to maintain the status quo; they don't set out to deceive. More often than not, they believe the stories they tell. Why would they not? The system they are part of incentivizes compliance with the power structure's interests; and, when tensions arise, it is generally easier to go along than to be a stickler for plausibility.

***

For getting mainstream media to sign on to the election meddling narrative, it would be difficult to underestimate the importance of the role played by a key component of the power structure in the United States today, the Democratic Party.

That is how desperate Democrats are to make sure that Clinton's stunning, self-inflicted defeat last November will not be Clintonism's (neoliberalism's, liberal imperialism's) last hurrah. To that end, they have been willing, even eager, to revive Cold War demons that had lain dormant for decades ! bringing the world to the brink of a nuclear apocalypse.

Ostensibly the less noxious of the two neoliberal parties that dominate our politics, Democrats today have sunk so low that were Republicans still no worse than they were, say, when they fell into line behind George W. Bush and Dick Cheney's Afghanistan and Iraq Wars, or even before Obama's 2008 electoral victory made many rank-and-file Republicans bat shit crazy, it would now be an open question which party actually is the greater evil of the two.

The consensus view in mainstream media lately, in the Democratic Party, and increasingly in the Republican Party as well, is that Trump is doing grave harm to the office of the Presidency and to many of the institutions, both domestic and international, through which the United States has dominated the world since 1945.

This is certainly the case. But, contrary to what is assumed throughout the power structure, it is at least debatable whether Trump's effect on these institutions – and the negative effect his presidency is having on the GOP itself – is, on balance, a good or bad thing.

Instead of rallying around the Democratic Party, a genuine Left would itself be taking aim at the bastions of empire and class rule that Trump is mindlessly but inexorably undoing. Trump's way is nihilistic and thuggish; and the only alternatives he or his cabinet secretaries and agency heads have in mind are odious even by Republican standards.

This is why the Trump presidency is, and will continue to be, an unmitigated disaster – no matter how much damage Trump does to the old world order or to some of the more disabling institutional arrangements afflicting the political scene.

Democrats can be and, for the most part, actually are, monumentally awful, but Republicans who support Trump are worse. This would not be so plainly the case, if the comparison was with pre-9/11 Republicans or even with the Republican Party before the 2008 election.

After all, if the appropriate metric is damage to world peace, geopolitical stability, and the wellbeing of humankind, Bush is still the worst President ever. Of course, if Trump mentally decomposes more than he already has, or if he starts acting out in exceptionally lethal ways, he could surpass even the standard Bush has set. For now, though, six months into the Trump era, W remains Number One How revealing, therefore, that the very media that, to their credit, have nothing good to say about the billionaire buffoon, are now welcoming Bush, and his underlings, back into the fold.

In polite society nowadays, Obamaphiles, including Obama himself and his First Lady, even seem to regard Bush the Younger as one of the good guys; and miscreants from his administration are featured in all the leading media outlets. How pathetic is that!

To his credit, however, Bush, unlike Trump, was not blatantly racist or nativist in his public pronouncements; and notwithstanding the fact that he and Cheney waged war on the Muslim world, he wasn't overtly Islamophobic either. The party he led generally followed suit.

However, once he was gone, Tea Partiers and Tea Party fellow travelers didn't have anything holding them back. With Obama at the helm of the empire, it didn't take long for them to make the Party over in their image.

For appearance sake, the Republican Party became the Party of No, but what they really were was the anti-Obama-for-all-the wrong-reasons Party. Republicans had no principled reason to turn Obama into Public Enemy Number One; his political views, which he did little to advance in any case, were more or less in line with those of pre-2001, or even pre-2008, Republicans.

Obama's rival in the 2012 election, Mitt Romney, was essentially a pre-2008 Republican; politically, he and Obama were cut from the same cloth. Tea Partiers didn't like that one bit, but even the most "deplorable" of them never hated Romney the way they hated Obama. What set their hatred off was the color of Obama's skin.

How else to account for eight years of "repeal and replace Obamacare" sloganeering? In substance and genealogy (its origins in the Heritage Foundation, the implementation of something very like it in Massachusetts under Governor Mitt Romney) Obamacare is essentially a Republican program. Had it not come with Obama's name attached, doctrinaire free-market theologians of the Rand Paul or Ted Cruz variety would still not like it, but neither would they or any of their co-thinkers get especially worked up on its account.

Nevertheless, it was opposition to Obamacare, more than anything else, that kept the GOP's several factions together during the Obama years. How ironic that all those "repeal and replace" Republicans are now floundering because when they finally got their chance to do what they said they wanted to do, they were unable to do anything at all. It is tempting to say that they outsmarted themselves, but the word "smart" grates when applied to them.

Democrats are generally nicer than Republicans, and many times more civilized. Were their self-exonerating anti-Russian, anti-Putin campaigning not so dangerous, they would plainly be the good guys still, comparatively speaking.

Even with their hysterical Russophobia, they probably still are. But being comparatively less awful than the GOP is no reason to buy into the election meddling story that Democrats are so assiduously promoting.

It is possible, of course, that despite all the reasons to be skeptical of their narrative, there is some truth in what they say. Even if there is, however, why make such a big deal or it? Who cares?

Evidently, pundits with venting privileges on ostensibly liberal cable networks do and Democratic Party sore losers, but their concerns are misdirected. No one, not even the worst of the worst on MSNBC, claims that those dastardly Russian meddlers affected the outcome of the election in any significant way. Russians didn't defeat Hillary Clinton; she defeated herself.

It is not for want of trying that no one has been able to make a plausible case for the claim that, but for Russian meddling, Clinton would have beaten Trump. But, alas, no one has been able to maintain that Russians had anything to do with collecting or counting votes, or that they interfered with the workings of the electoral process in any other way.

The idea instead is that they depressed Democratic turnout by diminishing enthusiasm for Clinton. They did this, supposedly, by providing evidence of the Democratic National Committee's efforts to rig the election for Hillary and against Bernie Sanders, and by demeaning Clinton in ways that Democrats and their friends in the mainstream press don't even bother to try to spell out.

If only the Democrats and their media flacks would evince half as much self-righteous indignation over past and on-going Republican efforts at voter suppression! There is no doubt that they were real and that their consequences were significant. Neither is the case with alleged Russian voter suppression efforts last year.

Moreover, even if the Russians did do all that our propagandists claimed they did, they did nothing worse than what countless homegrown political operatives do when they sell candidates to voters in more or less the way that commercial advertisers sell the wares they peddle to targeted audiences.

The difference is morally significant. If the Russians actually did suppress voter turnout in 2016, it was through one or another form of persuasion. Republicans suppress votes by making it difficult, or impossible, for likely Democratic voters ! African Americans and other "persons of color" mainly, but also students, and many elderly citizens ! to exercise their right to vote.

***

The consensus view notwithstanding, the Russian election meddling narrative is short on compelling evidence, and is grounded in a patently defective rationale. Even so, it could still have merit.

But even if there was meddling as charged, nothing much came of it. This has always been obvious, and it too is significant.

Sanders supporters didn't need Russians to tell them that the Democratic Party wanted Bernie to lose and Hillary to win. Everyone paying attention knew that already. Clinton's shortcomings were also evident for all to see.

Therefore, if the story line being pushed by our "manufacturers of consent" is on track, it would only show that those Russians are not nearly as clever as the propagandists vilifying them would like people to think. By documenting the obvious, what they did made about as much sense as throwing buckets of water into the ocean.

Why then is Trump putting the extent of his ineptitude on display by acting as if he is about to block the Mueller investigation into Russian meddling? Trump may not be the magisterial dealmaker his remaining fans believe him to be, but he is surely not as self-destructively stupid as his actions suggest.

The answer must be that he really does have something to hide; something more damaging than anything the mainstream media narrative suggests.

Trump doesn't know much, but he surely does know that Congressional investigations and Justice Department investigations involving special prosecutors take on lives of their own, even when, in the first instance, they are much ado about nothing. Watergate was only "a third-rate burglary," after all.

He is also shrewd enough to realize that his business machinations give Congress and the Justice Department plenty to investigate. There is sleaze galore out there, waiting to be uncovered.

Therefore, in the weeks and months ahead, if Trump is still around – or even if he returns to the gilded monstrosity on Fifth Avenue that he had built to glorify himself, leaving arch-reactionary Mike Pence in charge ! we will have loads of well-corroborated reports of shady (artful?) deals with Russian oligarchs and, insofar as there is a difference, Russian mobsters, making the news interesting again.

This is sheer speculation, of course; and the evidence, what there is of it so far, is circumstantial. Much of it consists of idiotic tweets that suggest nothing more damning than an acute consciousness of guilt. Ì

Nevertheless, I would bet the ranch, if I had one to bet, that honest and determined investigators with subpoena power scratching beneath the surface, will find incontrovertible proof of legal, moral, or political infractions so egregious that even the fools who still refuse to admit that Trump conned them into thinking that, as President, he would somehow make their lives better, will find it impossible to keep on standing by their man.

Trump is guilty, a hundred times over; and it is plain as day too that whatever it turns out to be that he is guilty of, that his over-arching cupidity and vanity made him do it.

Finding out what he is guilty of should be at the top of every competent authority's to do list. It should also become a consuming passion of journalists who, for their own good and the good of the public they serve, no longer want to propagandize for the beneficiaries of the status quo.

Because the power structure is so thoroughly and uniformly intent on dumping Trump – not for wholly creditable reasons, but, for a matter of such urgency, that hardly matters – opportunities for doing authentic journalism, even in the face of the propaganda mechanisms Herman and Chomsky identified, now exist to a degree that would have seemed unimaginable before November 2016.

It is a complicated business, however because the same anti-Trump animosities that make it possible to mobilize the press against the government also enable the Democratic Party to enlist support, in media circles and more generally, for the demonization of Putin and his government, with all the dangers that ensue.

So, by all means, investigate, investigate, and investigate some more – taking care, however, not to be sidetracked onto false paths where perils of Clintonite design threaten to spin out of control in ways that even competent statesmen, like Putin and Sergey Lavrov, would have a hard time diffusing, if they still had reasonable interlocutors in Washington to work with.

Those are, to put it mildly, in short supply. With Trump in the White House and a bipartisan (but Clinton inspired) neocon consensus in Congress, reasonable interlocutors in Washington are about as numerous as genuine progressives in the Democratic fold. Join the debate on Facebook More articles by: Andrew Levine

ANDREW LEVINE is the author most recently of THE AMERICAN IDEOLOGY (Routledge) and POLITICAL KEY WORDS (Blackwell) as well as of many other books and articles in political philosophy. His most recent book is In Bad Faith: What's Wrong With the Opium of the People . He was a Professor (philosophy) at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and a Research Professor (philosophy) at the University of Maryland-College Park. He is a contributor to Hopeless: Barack Obama and the Politics of Illusion (AK Press).

[Aug 08, 2017] According to a source familiar with the matter, McMaster is trying to dismiss anyone involved with a controversial memo arguing that the so-called "deep state" is engaged in a Maoist-style insurgency against the Trump administration

Notable quotes:
"... "According to a source familiar with the matter, McMaster is trying to dismiss anyone involved with a controversial memo arguing that the so-called "deep state" is engaged in a Maoist-style insurgency against the Trump administration. The author of that memo, NSC staffer Rich Higgins, has already been fired, and at least two other anti-globalist NSC staffers have also been forced out." ..."
Aug 08, 2017 | foreignpolicy.com

Anyone else seen this little beauty from Foreign Policy?

"According to a source familiar with the matter, McMaster is trying to dismiss anyone involved with a controversial memo arguing that the so-called "deep state" is engaged in a Maoist-style insurgency against the Trump administration. The author of that memo, NSC staffer Rich Higgins, has already been fired, and at least two other anti-globalist NSC staffers have also been forced out."

Heh heh heh the trumpeters Vs the corporatists - every oppressive theocracy should be made to play this game; of course the audience is susceptible to table-tennis watchers neck from swivelling to follow the dried dog turd bouncing back n forth, but the popcorn is pretty good.

Posted by: Debsisdead | Aug 6, 2017 10:27:47 PM | 68

[Aug 04, 2017] What made Mueller such a great asset for the deep state?

Notable quotes:
"... Mueller's FBI was also severely criticized by Department of Justice Inspector Generals finding the FBI overstepped the law improperly serving hundreds of thousands of "national security letters" to obtain private (and irrelevant) metadata on citizens, and for infiltrating nonviolent anti-war groups under the guise of investigating "terrorism." ..."
"... Mueller knew that Vice President Dick Cheney's claims connecting 9/11 to Iraq were bogus yet he remained quiet. Mueller didn't speak the truth about a war he knew to be unjustified. He didn't speak out against torture. He didn't speak out against unconstitutional surveillance. And he didn't tell the truth about 9/11. He is just "their man." ..."
Aug 04, 2017 | www.unz.com

annamaria > > , August 4, 2017 at 7:02 pm GMT

What made Mueller such a great asset for the deep state?

https://www.counterpunch.org/2017/06/08/comey-and-mueller-russiagates-mythical-heroes/

"Long before he became FBI Director, serious questions existed about Mueller's role as Acting U.S. Attorney in Boston in effectively enabling decades of corruption and covering up of the FBI's illicit deals with mobster Whitey Bulger and other "top echelon" informants who committed numerous murders and crimes. When the truth was finally uncovered through intrepid investigative reporting and persistent, honest judges, U.S. taxpayers footed a $100 million court award to the four men framed for murders committed by (the FBI-operated) Bulger gang . Mueller's FBI was also severely criticized by Department of Justice Inspector Generals finding the FBI overstepped the law improperly serving hundreds of thousands of "national security letters" to obtain private (and irrelevant) metadata on citizens, and for infiltrating nonviolent anti-war groups under the guise of investigating "terrorism."

Mueller knew that Vice President Dick Cheney's claims connecting 9/11 to Iraq were bogus yet he remained quiet. Mueller didn't speak the truth about a war he knew to be unjustified. He didn't speak out against torture. He didn't speak out against unconstitutional surveillance. And he didn't tell the truth about 9/11. He is just "their man."

[Aug 04, 2017] Reuben Fischer-Baum

Looks like Bezos has some interesting connections ;-)
Notable quotes:
"... The Washington Post has obtained transcripts of two conversations President Trump had with foreign leaders: one with Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto and another with Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull. ..."
Aug 03, 2017 | www.washingtonpost.com

The Washington Post has obtained transcripts of two conversations President Trump had with foreign leaders: one with Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto and another with Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull.

use2beadem, 9:47 PM EDT

Publishing the content of these calls is bad for our country, our democracy and the glue that binds us together.

The Post's disdain of this President is clearly overtaking judgment. Publishing calls of any President with other world leaders is part of the coup the Post is waging and participating in against the President.

(I don't remember a single call transcript between Obama and another leader being published in the Post). The Left surely won't like it when the tables are turned on them.

[Aug 03, 2017] Transcripts show that for Trump, the political optics are paramount

Aug 03, 2017 | www.washingtonpost.com

In this occasional series, we will bring you up to speed on the biggest national security stories of the week.

On Thursday, The Washington Post published previously undisclosed transcripts from President Trump's conversations with Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto and Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull. The two heated exchanges provided extraordinary insight into Trump's approach to diplomacy. Trump went back and forth with the Mexican president on which country will pay for the border wall, telling him that the best solution is to stop discussing the issue. Trump became exasperated with Australia's prime minister when Turnbull insisted that Trump would have to honor a deal signed by President Barack Obama that the United States would accept refugees detained by Australia.

But perhaps one of the most fascinating takeaways from the conversations was Trump's focus on his political successes and image, not the policy issues the two foreign leaders attempted to steer the conversations toward.

[Aug 02, 2017] President Trump Signs Russia Sanctions Bill but Issues Signing Statement of 'Concern' by Jason Ditz

This looks like attempt of Republicans to placate DemoRats (Neoliberal democrats) at the expense of Russia... A lot of internal politics involved.
Notable quotes:
"... And while he clearly had big problems with the bill, he signed it anyhow, saying he plans to work with Congress to "make the bill better," even though it's already the law of the land now. After struggles within Congress to get the bills through, there is little appetite to re-negotiate it. ..."
"... The bill imposes new sanctions on Russia, Iran, and North Korea, and limits the president's ability to remove sanctions without Congressional permission. Russia and Iran have threatened retaliation over the bill, as has the European Union, which fears the bill is going to target German energy companies. ..."
Aug 02, 2017 | news.antiwar.com

Condemns 'Seriously Flawed' Bill, Signs It Anyhow

Despite comments from the administration in recent days suggesting they were satisfied with the changes made to the Russia sanctions bill, President Trump's signing statement on the bill was an outright condemnation, insisting it improperly encroaches on his power, and hurts European allies .

And while he clearly had big problems with the bill, he signed it anyhow, saying he plans to work with Congress to "make the bill better," even though it's already the law of the land now. After struggles within Congress to get the bills through, there is little appetite to re-negotiate it.

In reality, Trump didn't have a lot of choice on the matter, as the overwhelming majorities in the House and Senate meant they could've easily overridden a veto if he'd offered it, which would've been politically embarrassing, particularly on a Russia-themed bill.

The bill imposes new sanctions on Russia, Iran, and North Korea, and limits the president's ability to remove sanctions without Congressional permission. Russia and Iran have threatened retaliation over the bill, as has the European Union, which fears the bill is going to target German energy companies.

[Aug 02, 2017] Meet the all-star team of lawyers Robert Mueller has assembled for the Trump-Russia investigation

From witch hunt there is a very small distance to "show trials". Show me the man and I will find the crime -- Lavrentiy Pavlovich Beria , head of Stalin's secret police
Notable quotes:
"... several members of the team have come under fire for their previous donations to Democrats, ..."
"... "You are witnessing the single greatest WITCH HUNT in American political history - led by some very bad and conflicted people!" Trump said Thursday on Twitter . ..."
Aug 02, 2017 | www.msn.com
... Yet despite the lawyers' resumes and reputations, several members of the team have come under fire for their previous donations to Democrats, prompting some critics to cry foul on the investigation and urge Trump to fire Mueller.

Trump himself has even weighed in:

"You are witnessing the single greatest WITCH HUNT in American political history - led by some very bad and conflicted people!" Trump said Thursday on Twitter .

[Aug 02, 2017] Show Me The Man And Ill Find You The Crime by Bob Barr

The US Deep State witch hunt against President-elect Trump has taken all the distinct characteristics of "show trials".
Notable quotes:
"... Though likely a disappointment to all the partisan spectators wishing for a clear moral victory from Mueller, the sweeping, unspecified, and costly nature of his investigation has all the hallmarks of a typical prosecutorial fishing expedition. ..."
"... And, as any criminal defense lawyer knows, given the reach of federal criminal laws, if you look long enough and subpoena enough witnesses and documents, you are fairly guaranteed to find some violation of some law to pin on some person. ..."
"... What comes to mind is Harvey Silverglate's 2009 book, "Three Felonies a Day: How the Feds Target the Innocent"; and, perhaps most frightening, his reminding us that it was Stalin's feared NKVD henchman, Lavrentiy Beria, who assured his boss, "Show me the man and I'll find you the crime." ..."
"... So, what is the point to all these theatrics? Same as it always is in Washington. Personal and partisan aggrandizement for bureaucrats, at a massive cost to the rest of us. Mueller gets his name in the spotlight for kicking-up a lot of dust. Democrats claim a moral victory for forcing the appointment of a special prosecutor. And Republicans dodge a bullet for Trump's poor personnel choices. ..."
Jun 28, 2017 | townhall.com

The "Sorkinization" of American politics; a cultural phenomenon engendered by the works of Hollywood director Aaron Sorkin -- in which Washingtonian politics is romanticized as some grandiose theatrical production, in which the protagonist (normally a liberal archetype) wins against his unscrupulous foe (usually a conservative stereotype) by simply giving a rousing speech or clever rhetorical foil. You see it everywhere in Washington, D.C. -- beltway pundits breathlessly waiting to share together in that idyllic " Sorkin moment "; whether it was Hillary's hoped-for victory speech last November or, now, waiting for Special Counsel Robert Mueller astride his white horse to out the "evil Trump clan" for sins and improprieties.

This, of course, is all a Hollywood fairytale. What currently is taking place under Mueller's direction resembles not so much a magnanimous crusade for truth and justice; but rather another example of what happens when bureaucrats are taken off the leash. It becomes the classic tale of a government lawyer in search of a crime.

Though likely a disappointment to all the partisan spectators wishing for a clear moral victory from Mueller, the sweeping, unspecified, and costly nature of his investigation has all the hallmarks of a typical prosecutorial fishing expedition.

Rather than setting specific parameters for his investigation, or having them set for him, the order appointing Mueller, by Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein grants Mueller almost limitless leeway in his probe, be it relative to "any links and/or coordination between the Russian government and individuals associated" with President Trump's presidential campaign (which likely would not constitute a crime), to federal regulations that relate to crimes that are among the most subjective, such as obstruction of justice and witness intimidation.

As one might expect, Mueller has taken the ball handed to him, and is off and running; like Diogenes with his lamp in search of an honest man, but here a prosecutor with a subpoena in search of a guilty man.

Not bound by any real budget constraints, Mueller already has begun building an investigatory army with which to haunt the Trump Administration for as long as he wants; or, at least, for as much time as it takes to find something to prosecute. That Mueller will find something is a virtual certainty given the vast scope of his appointment, and the lack of oversight by the Department of Justice now that Attorney General Jeff Sessions hastily (and, in my opinion, needlessly) recused himself. And, as any criminal defense lawyer knows, given the reach of federal criminal laws, if you look long enough and subpoena enough witnesses and documents, you are fairly guaranteed to find some violation of some law to pin on some person.

What comes to mind is Harvey Silverglate's 2009 book, "Three Felonies a Day: How the Feds Target the Innocent"; and, perhaps most frightening, his reminding us that it was Stalin's feared NKVD henchman, Lavrentiy Beria, who assured his boss, "Show me the man and I'll find you the crime."

So, what is the point to all these theatrics? Same as it always is in Washington. Personal and partisan aggrandizement for bureaucrats, at a massive cost to the rest of us. Mueller gets his name in the spotlight for kicking-up a lot of dust. Democrats claim a moral victory for forcing the appointment of a special prosecutor. And Republicans dodge a bullet for Trump's poor personnel choices.

The troubling, and lasting ramification of this melodrama, however, is the precedent it sets for future federal investigations. The degree of legal leeway given to Mueller is deeply bothersome. As law professor John C. Eastman notes in a recent article, the absence of virtually any limits on Mueller's power harks back to the days of the British empire's use of "writ[s] of assistance" and "general warrant[s]" to target and harass American colonists through invasive searches of homes, papers and possessions – with no judicial oversight, probable cause, or expiration date. "That is the very kind of thing our Fourth Amendment was adopted to prevent," writes Eastman , "[i]ndeed, the issuance of general warrants and writs of assistance is quite arguably the spark that ignited America's war for independence."

At the end of all this (if there is an end), America will be left a little more divided (if that is possible), and the Bill of Rights even weaker than today. If we were living in the "West Wing," it wouldn't really matter; but we are not living in Sorkin World. We are living in the real world; where government power run amok has very real and damaging effect on the way of life envisioned by our Founding Fathers and as enshrined in the United States Constitution.

[Jul 31, 2017] How Romney Loyalists Hijacked Trumps Foreign Policy

Notable quotes:
"... This isn't merely a story of palace intrigue and revolving chairs in the corridors of power. Brave Americans in the uniform of their country will continue to be sent into far-off lands to intercede in internecine conflicts that have little if anything to do with U.S. national security. Many will return physically shattered or mentally maimed. Others will be returned to Andrews Air Force Base in flag-draped coffins, to be saluted by serial presidents of both parties, helpless to stop the needless carnage. ..."
"... Ron Maxwell wrote and directed the Civil War trilogy of movies: ..."
"... Great piece. Thank you, Mr. Maxwell. Reading this, I burn with anger ! then a sense of utter futility washes over me. I think history will show that the Trump era was the moment the American people realized that the Deep State is more powerful than the presidency. ..."
"... The rogues' gallery of neocons and apprentice neocons described above is really disturbing. We didn't vote for this. ..."
"... Re Nikki Haley, she's already an embarrassment, an ignorant neocon-dependent. She's dragging us down the same old road of anti-Russia hysterics and Middle East meddling. The best that can be said of her presence at the UN is that by putting her there Trump promoted one of his allies into the SC governor's mansion. I don't think he was under any illusions as to her foreign policy knowledge, competence, or commitment to an America First policy. But she's become a vector for neocons to reinfect government, and she needs to be removed. ..."
"... Neoconism and neoliberalism is like a super-bug infection. None of the anti-biotics are working. We have only one hope left. Rand Paul, the super anti-neocon/neoliberal. ..."
"... In this country we can talk about resenting elites all we want, but when it comes to making American foreign policy there still is an American foreign policy elite – and it's very powerful. Why has there been no debate? Actually, Michael Mandelbaum, an author with whom I seldom agree on anything, but in his book "The Frugal Superpower" he actually tells you why there's no debate in the foreign policy establishment. ..."
"... And to be part of the establishment you have to buy into it – to its ideology, to its beliefs system, and that is a very hard thing to break. And so before we all jump up and down and say, "Wow! Donald Trump won! NATO is going to be changed. Our commitments in East Asia are going to change. The Middle East may change!" We'd better take a deep breath and ask ourselves, and I think Will Ruger raised this point on the first panel, where is the counter-elite? ..."
"... Where is a Trumpian counter-elite that not only can take the senior positions in the cabinet like Defense Secretary and Secretary of State, but be the assistant secretaries, the deputy assistant secretaries, the NSC staffers. ..."
"... I think that elite doesn't exist right now, and that's a big problem, because the people who are going to be probably still in power are the people who do not agree with the kinds of foreign policy ideas that I think most of us in this room are sympathetic to. So, over time maybe that will change. ..."
"... The problem with the neocons is that their ambition vastly exceeds their ability. ..."
Jul 31, 2017 | www.theamericanconservative.com

Rex Tillerson, formidably accomplished in global business, was nevertheless as much a neophyte as his boss when it came to navigating the policy terrain of the D.C. swamp. As is well known, in building his team he relied on those two neocon avatars, Dick Cheney and Condoleezza Rice, who had originally promoted his own candidacy for secretary of state. But Rice had been a vocal part of the neocon Never Trump coalition. Her anti-Trump pronouncements included: "Donald Trump should not be president .He doesn't have the dignity and stature to be president." The Washington Post greeted her 2017 book, Democracy: Stories from the Long Road to Freedom , as "a repudiation of Trump's America First worldview."

Thus it wasn't surprising that Rice would introduce Elliott Abrams to Tillerson as an ideal candidate for State's No. 2 position. This would have placed a dyed-in-the-wool neocon hardliner at the very top of the State Department's hierarchy and given him the power to hire and fire all undersecretaries across the vast foreign policy empire. Rice, one of the architects of George W. Bush's failed policies of regime change and nation building, would have consolidated a direct line of influence into the highest reaches of the Trump foreign policy apparatus.

Not only was Abrams' entire career a refutation of Trump's America First foreign policy, but he had spent the previous eighteen months publicly bashing Trump in harsh terms. Cleverly, however, he had not signed either of the two Never Trump letters co-signed by most of the other neocon foreign policy elite. Abrams almost got the nod, except for a last-minute intervention by Trump adviser Steve Bannon, who was armed with every disparaging anti-Trump statement Abrams had made. Examples: "This is a question of character. He is not fit to sit in the chair of George Washington and Abraham Lincoln .his absolute unwillingness to learn anything about foreign policy .Hillary would be better on foreign policy. I'm not going to vote for Trump ."

But Abrams' rejection was the exception. As a high profile globalist-interventionist he could not easily hide his antipathy toward the Trump doctrine. Others, whose track records and private comments were more easily obscured, were waived in by gatekeepers whose mission it was (and remains) to populate State, DoD, and national security agencies with establishment and neocon cadres, not with proven Trump supporters and adherents to his foreign policy.

But how did the gatekeepers get in? Romney may have disappeared from the headlines, but he never left the sidelines. His chess pieces were already on the board, occupying key squares and prepared to move.

Once the president opened the door to RNC chairman Reince Priebus as his chief of staff, to Rex Tillerson at State, to James Mattis as defense secretary, and to H. R. McMaster at NSC, the neocons just walked in. While each of these political and military luminaries may publicly support the president's policies and in some instances may sincerely want to see them implemented, their entire careers have been spent within the establishment and neocon elite. They don't know any other world view or any other people.

Donald Trump ran on an America First foreign policy, repeatedly deriding George W. Bush for invading Iraq in 2003. He criticized Clinton and Obama for their military interventions in Libya and their support for regime change in Syria. He questioned the point of the endless Afghan war. He criticized the Beltway's hostile obsession with Russia while it ignored China's military buildup and economic threat to America.

Throughout the campaign Trump made abundantly clear his foreign policy ethos. If elected he would stop the policy of perpetual war, strengthen America's military, take care of U.S. veterans, focus particularly on annihilating the ISIS caliphate, protect the homeland from Islamist radicalism, and promote a carefully calibrated America First policy.

But, despite this clear record, according to Politico and other Beltway journals, the president has been entreated in numerous White House and Pentagon meetings to sign off on globalist foreign policy goals, including escalating commitments to the war in Afghanistan. These presentations, conducted by H.R. McMaster and others, were basically arguments to continue the global status quo; in other words, a foreign policy that Clinton would have embraced. Brian Hook and Nadia Schadlow were two of the lesser known policy wonks who participated in these meetings, determining vital issues of war and peace.

Brian Hook, head of State Department policy planning, is an astute operative and member in good standing of the neocon elite. He's also a onetime foreign policy adviser to Romney and remains in close touch with him. Hook was one of the founders, along with Eliot Cohen and Eric Edelman, of the anti-Trump John Hay Initiative. Hook organized one of the Never Trump letters during the campaign, and his views are well-known, in part through a May 2016 piece by Julia Hoffe in Politico Magazine. A passage: "My wife said, 'never,'" said Brian Hook, looking pained and slicing the air with a long, pale hand. .Even if you say you support him as the nominee," Hook says, "you go down the list of his positions and you see you disagree on every one."

One might wonder how a man such as Hook could become the director of policy planning and a senior adviser to Rex Tillerson, advising on all key foreign policy issues? The answer is: the Romney network.

Consider also the case of Margaret Peterlin, assigned as a Sherpa during the transition to guide Tillerson through the confirmation process. Another experienced Beltway insider, Peterlin promptly made herself indispensable to Tillerson and blocked anyone who wanted access to him, no matter how senior. Peterlin then brought Brian Hook onboard, a buddy from their Romney days, to serve as the brains for foreign policy while she was serving as the Gorgon-eyed chief of staff.

According to rumor, the two are now blocking White House personnel picks, particularly Trump loyalists, from appointments at State. At the same time, they are bringing aboard neocons such as Kurt Volker, executive director of the McCain Institute and notorious Russia hawk, and Wess Mitchell, president of the neocon Center for European Policy Analysis (CEPA). As special representative for Ukraine negotiations, Volker is making proclamations to inflame the conflict and further entangle the United States.

Meanwhile, Mitchell, another Romney alumnus and a Brian Hook buddy from the John Hay Initiative, has been nominated as assistant secretary of state for European and Erurasian affairs. Brace yourself for an unnecessary Cold War with Russia, if not a hot one. While Americans may not really care whether ethnic Russians or ethnic Ukrainians dominate the Donbass, these guys do.

Then there's Nadia Schadlow, another prominent operative with impeccable neocon credentials. She was the senior program officer at the Smith Richardson Foundation, where her main job was to underwrite the neocon project by offering grants to the many think tanks in their network. For the better part of a decade she pursued a PhD under the tutelage of Eliot Cohen, who has pronounced himself a "Never Trumper" and has questioned the president's mental health. Cohen, along with H.R. McMaster, provided editorial guidance to Schadlow for her book extolling nation-building and how we can do more of it.

Relationships beget jobs, which is how Schadlow became deputy assistant to the president, with the task, given by her boss H.R. McMaster, of writing the administration's National Security Strategy. Thus do we have a neocon stalwart who wrote the book on nation building now writing President Trump's national security strategy.

How, we might ask, did these Never Trump activists get into such high positions in the Trump administration? And what was their agenda at such important meetings with the President if not to thwart his America First agenda? Put another way, how did Trump get saddled with nearly Mitt Romney's entire foreign policy staff? After all, the American people did not elect Mitt Romney when they had the chance.

Trump is a smart guy. So is Barack Obama. But even Obama, Nobel Peace Prize in hand, could not prevent the inexorable slide to violent regime change in Libya, which resulted in a semi-failed state, tens of thousands killed, and a foothold for Al Queda and other radical Islamists in the Maghreb. He also could not prevent the arming of Islamist rebels in Syria after he had the CIA provide lethal arms strictly to "moderate rebels." Unable or unwilling to disengage from Afghanistan, Obama acquiesced in a series of Pentagon strategies with fluctuating troop levels before bequeathing to his successor an open ended, unresolved war.

Rumors floating through official Washington suggest the neocons now want to replace Tillerson at State with Trump critic and Neocon darling Nikki Haley, currently pursuing a one-person bellicose foreign policy from her exalted post at the United Nations. Not surprisingly, Haley and Romney go way back. As a firm neocon partisan, she endorsed his presidential bid in 2011 .

As UN ambassador, Haley has articulated a nearly incoherent jumble of statements that seem more in line with her own neocon worldview than with Trump's America First policies. Some samples:

"I think that, you know, Russia is full of themselves. They've always been full of themselves. But that's – its more of a façade that they try and show as opposed to anything else."

"What we are is serious. And you see us in action, so its not in personas. Its in actions and its what we do."

"The United States calls for an immediate end to the Russian occupation of Crimea. Crimea is a part of Ukraine. Our Crimea-related sanctions will remain in place until Russia returns control over the peninsula to Ukraine."

One must ask: Is Ambassador Haley speaking on behalf of the Trump administration when she says it is official U.S. policy that Russia, having annexed Crimea, must return it to Ukraine? Is the Russo-American geopolitical relationship to be held hostage indefinitely because in 2014 the people of Crimea voted for their political reintegration into Russia, which they had been part of since 1776?

Since there is as much chance of Russia ceding Crimea back to Ukraine as there is of the United States ceding Texas back to Mexico, does this mean there is no possibility of any meaningful cooperation with Russia on anything else? Not even in fighting the common ominous threat from Islamist radicalism? Has Haley committed the American people to this dead-end policy on her own or in consultation with the President?

On July 14, the Washington Examiner wrote that "Haley's remarks set the tone for Trump's reversal from the less interventionist, 'America First' foreign policy he campaigned on." Little wonder, then, that in a little-noticed victory lap of her own, coinciding with the release of her book, Condoleezza Rice acknowledged the near complete takeover of Trump's foreign policy team. "The current national security team is terrific," she said. She even gave Trump her anointed blessing following their recent White House meeting, during which the septuagenarian schoolboy received the schoolmarm's pat on the head: " He was engaging," she said. "I found him on top of his brief .asking really good questions." That's a far cry from her campaign-season comment about Trump that he "doesn't have the dignity and stature to be president."

American foreign policy seems to be on auto-pilot, immune to elections and impervious to the will of the people. It is perpetuated by an entrenched contingent of neocon and establishment zealots and bureaucratic drones in both the public and private sector, whose careers, livelihoods, and very raison d'etre depend on an unchallenged policy of military confrontation with the prestige, power, and cash flow it generates. Those who play the game by establishment rules are waived in. Those who would challenge the status quo are kept out. This is the so-called Deep State, thwarting the will of President Trump and the people who voted for him.

This isn't merely a story of palace intrigue and revolving chairs in the corridors of power. Brave Americans in the uniform of their country will continue to be sent into far-off lands to intercede in internecine conflicts that have little if anything to do with U.S. national security. Many will return physically shattered or mentally maimed. Others will be returned to Andrews Air Force Base in flag-draped coffins, to be saluted by serial presidents of both parties, helpless to stop the needless carnage.

Ron Maxwell wrote and directed the Civil War trilogy of movies: Gettysburg, Gods and Generals, Copperhead.

Andrew , says: July 30, 2017 at 11:04 pm

This is all very convincing, but the point remains: Trump won and is the one responsible for allowing all these neocons through the door. Had Pat Buchanan won the nomination and the Presidency back in the nineties, does anyone believe he would make the same blunders, and not be equipped to find the right traditional conservatives instead of the establishment DC neocons that try and swamp every GOP Administration now since Reagan? Trump is simply too naive and doesn't have any feel for the political ideologies of all of these people, being not much of a political animal himself. And replacing Priebus with General Kelly isn't likely to change all that. He should be talking to Ann Coulter and Buchanan as unofficial advisers or something.
Fran Macadam , says: July 31, 2017 at 12:36 am
Globalism is the twenty-first century euphemism for old fashioned imperialism, now on Wall Street propelled nuclear steroids.
KaneV , says: July 31, 2017 at 1:15 am
Good God how shallow is the Trump foreign policy bench that the American Con has a director writing in its defense?
reelectclaydavis , says: July 31, 2017 at 4:43 am
Interesting argument, though you ignore other factors besides the conspiratorial-sounding "Romney network" that account for American interventionist neo-conservatives finding their way back into power: 1) that they are by far the largest group of people available to staff the government because of a) the dominance of aggressive liberal internationalism over more restrained realism in graduate schools which educate these foreign policy specialists; b) an inherent bias of these specialists not to admit that America cannot influence world events (that would be like a social worker who didn't believe s/he could usually mediate conflicts). Also, 2) Trump's alleged non-interventionist beliefs are less well-formed than you imply, you just project on him what you wish to see; a) you ignore his comments about taking the oil of other countries, an idea the neo-conservatives had as a way to pay for operations in Iraq; and b) Beliefs closer to Trump's core: that others not paying their fair share and that America is being taken advantage of, are not incompatible with the American interventions you oppose.
polistra , says: July 31, 2017 at 8:13 am
You can't hijack an executive's policy unless the executive is either hopelessly weak or a faker. Doesn't matter which.

The only good part is that the fake image of a somewhat less warlike "Trump", stirred up by the media to destroy Trump, is actually DOING what a real non-interventionist Trump would have done. EU is breaking away from US control, just as a real antiwar Trump would have ordered it to do.

Dan Stewart , says: July 31, 2017 at 8:23 am
Great piece. Thank you, Mr. Maxwell. Reading this, I burn with anger ! then a sense of utter futility washes over me. I think history will show that the Trump era was the moment the American people realized that the Deep State is more powerful than the presidency.
For Virginia , says: July 31, 2017 at 8:23 am
It's good to see Ron Maxwell published in these pages. I watch Gettysburg at least once a year. And don't think Virginians aren't grateful for Maxwell's role in helping put paid to Eric Cantor's political career.

The rogues' gallery of neocons and apprentice neocons described above is really disturbing. We didn't vote for this. And we don't want it.

Re Nikki Haley, she's already an embarrassment, an ignorant neocon-dependent. She's dragging us down the same old road of anti-Russia hysterics and Middle East meddling. The best that can be said of her presence at the UN is that by putting her there Trump promoted one of his allies into the SC governor's mansion. I don't think he was under any illusions as to her foreign policy knowledge, competence, or commitment to an America First policy. But she's become a vector for neocons to reinfect government, and she needs to be removed.

Johann , says: July 31, 2017 at 8:27 am
Neoconism and neoliberalism is like a super-bug infection. None of the anti-biotics are working. We have only one hope left. Rand Paul, the super anti-neocon/neoliberal.
SDS , says: July 31, 2017 at 8:46 am
"Trump is a smart guy" ..
??
If so; why does he not see this happening all around him? Except for his pompous, ignorant, hands-off method of governing, that is . The Emperor has no clothes but doesn't seem to know, nor care that he doesn't
Kurt Gayle , says: July 31, 2017 at 9:03 am
Christopher Layne, Robert M. Gates Chair in National Security, Texas A&M at the American Conservative Conference "Foreign Policy in America's Interest" (Nov 15 2016) said:

"In this country we can talk about resenting elites all we want, but when it comes to making American foreign policy there still is an American foreign policy elite – and it's very powerful. Why has there been no debate? Actually, Michael Mandelbaum, an author with whom I seldom agree on anything, but in his book "The Frugal Superpower" he actually tells you why there's no debate in the foreign policy establishment.

You see, debate is – basically goes from here to there [Dr. Layne puts his two index fingers close together in front of his face], like from the 45-yard-line to the 45-yard-line. And why does it stop there? Because people who try to go down towards the goal line have their union cards taken away. They're kicked out of the establishment. They're not listened to. They're disrespected.

And to be part of the establishment you have to buy into it – to its ideology, to its beliefs system, and that is a very hard thing to break. And so before we all jump up and down and say, "Wow! Donald Trump won! NATO is going to be changed. Our commitments in East Asia are going to change. The Middle East may change!" We'd better take a deep breath and ask ourselves, and I think Will Ruger raised this point on the first panel, where is the counter-elite?

Where is a Trumpian counter-elite that not only can take the senior positions in the cabinet like Defense Secretary and Secretary of State, but be the assistant secretaries, the deputy assistant secretaries, the NSC staffers.

I think that elite doesn't exist right now, and that's a big problem, because the people who are going to be probably still in power are the people who do not agree with the kinds of foreign policy ideas that I think most of us in this room are sympathetic to. So, over time maybe that will change.

Over time maybe a counter-elite will emerge. But in the short term I see very little prospect for all the big changes that most of us are hoping to see, and so for me the challenge that we face is really to find ways to develop this counter-elite than can staff an administration in the future, that has at least what we think are the views that Donald Trump holds."

http://www.theamericanconservative.com/articles/watch-foreign-policy-in-americas-interest/

We're in a new period – a period of learning for President Trump and for those in the administration who back his anti-establishment foreign policy view. And while it is true that (as Chris Layne said) "in the short term I see very little prospect for all the big changes that most of us are hoping to see," as we move into the medium and long term, many of us are hopeful that these big Trumpian foreign policy changes can begin to be made.

Kevin , says: July 31, 2017 at 10:13 am
Shorter Ron Maxwell: good tsar, evil advisors !
Bill Smith , says: July 31, 2017 at 10:24 am
This article is sharply contradicted by an earlier and more informed article in Conservative Review, an outlet with a considerably larger audience than American Conservative. You might want to read that as a corrective to this one. You can find it here: https://www.conservativereview.com/articles/trump-nat-sec-strategy-to-translate-maga-into-foreign-policy

Money quote:

A senior administration official familiar with the work of Nadia Schadlow, a national security expert brought on to help draft the National Security Strategy, tells CR that she will attempt to produce an NSS as "iconoclastic as our new commander in chief," adding, "the era of milquetoast boilerplate is over."

Henri James , says: July 31, 2017 at 10:44 am
I do love that in all of these scenarios, Trump is just some innocent moon-eyed man child who can't possibly be expected to think on his own.
Charlie , says: July 31, 2017 at 11:27 am
The problem with the neocons is that their ambition vastly exceeds their ability. Neocons developed their minds in the Cold war dealing with a western power, the USSR. The problem is that once one enters the Middle East and Asia one is dealing with languages and cultures of which they [knew] next to nothing. How many speak Arabic, Farsi, Turkish and Urdu such that they understand every nuance of what is said and unsaid?

When dealing with the arabs and many in Afghanistan everything is personnel and this can go back 5 generations and includes hundreds if not thousands of people.

Trump has the common sense not to become involved in that he does not understand.

David Skerry , says: July 31, 2017 at 11:51 am
They come back in boxes while those who sent them to their deaths remain in the bags of the "America Second" group which highjacked our Congress. It's no longer "God Bless America"; it's "God Help America."

[Jul 30, 2017] The likeliest and most obvious choice for Trump on how to escape the Mueller trap seems to have eluded Pat Buchanan: starting a war in the Middle East

Notable quotes:
"... With Trump quite clearly only concerned with his own well-being, the diversion of a patriotic war is the prime choice in times of trouble. The only question that remains is how will his generals will look at the option of getting involved in yet another ruinous war. A war that could have very dangerous implications and unpredictable outcomes. ..."
Jul 30, 2017 | www.unz.com

DannyMarcus > , July 30, 2017 at 12:49 pm GMT

@Diversity Heretic

My conclusion is that the Deep State is winning. Even I've getting numb and increasingly less interested in the twists and turns of who's investigating whom and why and what are the likely consequences.

I'm reminded of the quote attribute to Lavrentiy Beria: "Show me the man and I will find you the crime."

The likeliest and most obvious choice for Trump on how to escape the Mueller trap seems to have eluded Pat Buchanan: starting a war in the Middle East to overshadow or bury all investigations into the president's wrongdoings. Engineering a war with Iran would fit the bill perfectly.

With Trump quite clearly only concerned with his own well-being, the diversion of a patriotic war is the prime choice in times of trouble. The only question that remains is how will his generals will look at the option of getting involved in yet another ruinous war. A war that could have very dangerous implications and unpredictable outcomes.

[Jul 30, 2017] Mainstream News Manipulation of US Public

McGovern thinks that it was Brennan boys who hacked into DNC as a part of conspiracy to implicate Russia and to secure Hillary win. One of the resons was probably that DNC servers were not well protected and there were other hacks, about whihc NSA know. So the sad state of DNC internet security needed to be swiped under the carpet and that's why CrowdStike was hired.
NSA created 7 million lines of code for penetration and that includes those that were pablished by Wikileaks and designed to imitate that attackers are coming (and using the language) from: China, North Korea, Iran and Russia.
Also NSA probably intercepts and keeps all Internet communications for a month or two so if it was a hack NSA knows who did it and what was stolen
But the most unexplainable part was that fact that FBI was denied accessing the evidence. I always think that thye can dictate that they need to see in such cases, but obviously this was not the case.
Notable quotes:
"... She couldn't pack a school gymnasium while Trumps rallies were packed with 10's of thousands. ..."
Jul 30, 2017 | www.youtube.com

Anna C 1 month ago

LEGAL, WIKIMEDIA V. NSA Discussing fake news and the NSA lawsuit at Yale | https://blog.wikimedia.org/2017/06/16/fake-news-nsa-lawsuit-yale/

Tracy Spose 1 month ago

Love the rest of the talk, but no way did Hillary win. No way did she get the popular vote.

The woman was calling for war and reinstating the draft on men and women. She couldn't pack a school gymnasium while Trumps rallies were packed with 10's of thousands.

[Jul 30, 2017] Rumors have started about a 2nd Special Prosecutor to investigate the DNC

At the moment, the talk is about DNC scuttling Bernie. But if it gets going, how long before they get to DNC/Crowdstrike/Ukraine .? [And then there's DWS and the Awan bros.]
If Trump wants to survive he should FIGHT! He call out the Deep State explicitly, using the words "Deep State." and explaining machinations to the public. This creates a risk for his life, but still this is the only way he can avoid slow strangulation by Muller.
Notable quotes:
"... In explicit terms Trump should call out the Deep State – he should use the words "Deep State." ..."
"... Mueller is Deep Sate - he is an elite - if he comes up with things that have nothing to do with Russia and the election - Trump should pardon whoever - case closed. ..."
"... Murmurs have started about a 2nd Special Prosecuter – to investigate the DNC. At the moment, the talk is about DNC scuttling Bernie. But if it gets going, how long before they get to DNC/Crowdstrike/Ukraine .? [And then there's DWS and the Awan bros.] ..."
"... Lee Stranahan names names [Clinton, McCain, CIA, the Media, Soros....] ..."
Jul 30, 2017 | www.unz.com

RobinG, July 30, 2017 at 4:19 pm GMT

AT LAST .

HOUSE (20 MOC's signed) CALL TO INVESTIGATE CLINTON & DNC

US House Judiciary Committee requests DoJ appoint second Special Prosecutor (PDF)

https://judiciary.house.gov/wp-content/uploads/2017/07/072717_HJC-Letter-to-AG-DAG.pdf

RobinG, July 30, 2017 at 7:41 am GMT

@Art Trump should FIGHT!

In explicit terms Trump should call out the Deep State – he should use the words "Deep State."

Mueller is Deep Sate - he is an elite - if he comes up with things that have nothing to do with Russia and the election - Trump should pardon whoever - case closed.

Trump should say that right now - put the onus on Mueller to do the right thing and not take down the election over small nothings.

Peace --- Art

... ... ...

Murmurs have started about a 2nd Special Prosecuter – to investigate the DNC. At the moment, the talk is about DNC scuttling Bernie. But if it gets going, how long before they get to DNC/Crowdstrike/Ukraine .? [And then there's DWS and the Awan bros.]

Lee Stranahan names names [Clinton, McCain, CIA, the Media, Soros....]

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L4q-sHJCGCk

LEE STRANAHAN: ALEX JONES INFOWARS

[Jul 29, 2017] Ray McGovern The Deep State Assault on Elected Government Must Be Stopped

Highly recommended!
Ray McGovern raise important fact: DNC hide evidence from FBI outsourcing everything to CrowdStrike. This is the most unexplainable fact in the whole story. One hypotheses that Ray advanced here that there was so many hacks into DNC that they wanted to hide.
Another important point is CIA role in elections, and specifically John O. Brennan behaviour. Brennan's 25 years with the CIA included work as a Near East and South Asia analyst and as station chief in Saudi Arabia.
McGovern thing that Brennon actually controlled Obama. And in his opinion Brennan was the main leaker of Trump surveillance information.
Notable quotes:
"... Do really think the Deep State cares about the environment. Trump is our only chance to damage Deep State. McGovern is wrong... DNC were from Seth Rich, inside DNC. Murdered for it. McGovern is wrong... i could go on and on but suffice it to say his confidence is way to high. He is wrong. ..."
Apr 2, 2017 | www.youtube.com

Greg Rhodes 3 months ago

I really like Ray... I watch and listen , he seems to use logic, reason and facts in his assessments.. I'm surprised CIA and the deep state allow him to operate ... stay safe Ray...
Robert Eargle 2 months ago

McGovern, you idiot. To try to put Trump on Hillary's level is complete stupidity. The war with Russia or nothing was avoided with a Trump victory. Remember the NATO build up on the Russian border preparing for a Hillary win? Plus, if Hillary won, justice and law in the USA would be over with forever. The Germans dont know sht about the USA to say their little cute phrase. Trump is a very calm mannered man and his hands on the nuke button is an issue only to those who watch the fake MSM. And no the NSA has not released anything either. Wrong on that point too.

Manley Nelson 2 months ago

The German expression of USA having a choice between cholera and plague is ignorant. McGovern is wrong ....everyone knew HRC was a criminal. McGovern is wrong... Jill Stein in not trustworthy. A vote for Jill Stein was a vote away from Trump. If Jill Stein or HRC were elected their would be no environment left to save. Do really think the Deep State cares about the environment. Trump is our only chance to damage Deep State. McGovern is wrong... DNC were from Seth Rich, inside DNC. Murdered for it. McGovern is wrong... i could go on and on but suffice it to say his confidence is way to high. He is wrong.

Rodger Asai 3 months ago

Another month or so and the DHS may offer a color-coding system to help the sheeple understand various levels of confidence. Green - Moderate Confidence Blue - High Confidence Yellow - Very High Confidence Orange - Extremely High Confidence Red - Based on Actual Fact

The last category may be one of the signs of the apocalypse.

KELLI2L2 3 months ago

As it turned out Jill Stein was a bad choice too... Recount debacle.

midnighfairy 1 month ago

I want Hilary to pay for her lies

[Jul 29, 2017] Did Russiagate begin as a Clinton campaign conspiracy? New forensic research suggests it by Alexander Mercouris

Now the most strange event: why investigation was outsourced go dubious security firm CrowdStrike, and FBI was completely excluded, falls in place.
Notable quotes:
"... That speed is many times faster than what is physically possible with a hack. ..."
"... copied (not hacked) ..."
"... what seems to have been a desperate effort to "blame the Russians" for publishing highly embarrassing DNC emails three days before the Democratic convention last July. ..."
"... The campaign was enthusiastically supported by a compliant "mainstream" media; they are still on a roll. ..."
"... "The Russians" were the ideal culprit. And, after WikiLeaks editor Julian Assange announced on June 12, 2016, "We have emails related to Hillary Clinton which are pending publication," her campaign had more than a month before the convention to insert its own "forensic facts" and prime the media pump to put the blame on "Russian meddling." ..."
"... The purported "hack" of the DNC by Guccifer 2.0 was not a hack, by Russia or anyone else. Rather it originated with a copy (onto an external storage device – a thumb drive, for example) by an insider. The data was leaked after being doctored with a cut-and-paste job to implicate Russia. We do not know who or what the murky Guccifer 2.0 is. You may wish to ask the FBI. ..."
"... We do not think that the June 12 & 15 timing was pure coincidence. Rather, it suggests the start of a pre-emptive move to associate Russia with anything WikiLeaks might have been about to publish and to "show" that it came from a Russian hack. ..."
"... someone within the DNC who was presumably anxious to protect the Hillary Clinton campaign set about creating a false trail so that the leak of the emails would be blamed not on a DNC insider but on the Russians. That way it was hoped that the focus would be not on the content of