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Hillary "Warmonger" Clinton == Obama 2.0, a Manchurian candidate fully controlled by financial oligarchy

"Being  a neoconservative should receive at least as much vitriolic societal rejection as being a Ku Klux Klan member or a child molester" ~Caitlin Johnstone

Hillary Clinton is "a shifty, corrupt, lying shill,  who cared nothing for real progressive values… (Kevin Drum). The only area in which she is highly qualified in selling out the American people to globalists. This despicable Wahhabism appleaser (who pretends to be a fighter for women and minorities rights) voted for Iraq war, was the butcher of Libya and Syria and was instrumental in killing thousands of women and children in those two countries. She accepted millions in "donations," from despotic Middle Eastern regimes that stone women for adultery.

Her addiction to Wall Street money and Saudi money like Bill addiction to sex is impossible to break.  With the exception of a few social issues, Hillary Clinton is a right wing Republican.

Hillary Clinton can change her views in an instant on trade, guns, gay marriage, and all sorts of issues, but she's consistent in this: she wants war. Washington Examiner

  "Hillary Clinton will say anything to get elected, and nothing will change." -- Barack Obama, 2008

Version 5.2, May 1, 2017

News US Presidential Elections of 2016 Recommended Links Hillary Clinton email scandal Hillary health issues Hillary role in Libya disaster Hillary role in Syria bloodbath Is Hillary Clinton a war criminal?
Clinton Cash and Hillary Clinton links to financial industry DNC emails leak Hillary the warmonger Is Hillary Clinton a toxic manager? Hillary as a pathological liar Conversion of Democratic Party into War Party and Hillary Clinton policy toward Russia Anti-Russian hysteria in connection emailgate and DNC leak Bill  sexapades became Hillary campaign issue
Strzok-gate Steele dossier Brennan elections machinations Andrew McCabe and his close circle of "fighters with organized crime" James "We are not weasels" Comey Appointment of a Special Prosecutor gambit Wiretaps of Trump and his associates during Presidential elections Demexit: Abandonment of Democratic party by working class and middle class
Hillary Clinton's faux feminism and cruelty toward women and children Hillary health issues Madeleine Albright as a model for Hillary Hillary Clinton and Obama created ISIS Hillary wet kiss with neocons Female Sociopaths Hillary Clinton defense of the middle aged rapist of a 12 years old girl Pro-War Neoliberal Democrats as Vichy Left
Superdelegates fraud at Democratic National Convention Crisis of legitimacy of neoliberal elite FBI and CIA contractor Crowdstrike and very suspicious DNC leak saga Bernie Sanders as sheepdog for Hillary Understanding Hillary Clinton email scandal Perjury Investigation of Hillary Clinton Questions about Huma Abedin email forwarding Israel lobby
Media-Military-Industrial Complex The Deep State Nation under attack meme "Fuck the EU": State Department neocons show EU its real place New American Militarism  Neocon foreign policy is a disaster for the USA Obama: a yet another Neocon Neocons Credibility Scam
Presidential debate trap staged by neoliberal media Blowback against neoliberal globalization Corporatist Corruption: Systemic Fraud under Clinton-Bush-Obama Regime American Exceptionalism Noble Lie Deception as an art form Lock her up movement  
Clinton Cash The Untold Story of How and Why Foreign Governments and Businesses Helped Make Bill and Hillary Rich Crisis of Character A White House Secret Service Officer Discloses His Firsthand Experience with Hillary, Bill, and How They O Hillary the Other Woman Dolly Kyle Amazon.com Books The Clintons' War on Women Roger Stone, Robert Morrow Amazon.com Books Bill Clinton New Gilded Age President Patrick J. Maney 9780700621941 Amazon.com Books The Secret Life of Bill Clinton The Unreported Stories Ambrose Evans-Pritchard  Amazon.com Books Partners in Crime The Clintons' Scheme to Monetize the White House for Personal Profit Jerome Corsi  Amazon  
Neoliberalism as a New Form of Corporatism Neocolonialism as Financial Imperialism Diplomacy by deception Cold War II Lawrence Summers Sandy Weill: the banker who bought Bill Clinton Robert Rubin, the man who helped to convert the USA into banana republic Lesser evil trick of legitimizing a disastrous, corrupt neoliberal politicians in US elections
Predator state The Iron Law of Oligarchy Elite [Dominance] Theory And the Revolt of the Elite Inverted Totalitarism == Managed Democracy == Neoliberalism Neoliberalism as Trotskyism for the rich   Politically Incorrect Humor  Etc

Due to the size an introduction was converted to a separate page Hillary Clinton as neocon warmonger

Summary

Clintonism is about playing the "identity politics" as a bulwark against any class or populist upheaval that might threaten neoliberalism.
"Clintonism's core identity is not, in other words, as a crusade for groups suffering from the legacy and future threat of oppression by Trump's white male followers. It is a full-court press to keep the wheels on the neoliberal sh*twagon as it careens down the road of globalization, and it recognizes the importance in American democracy of slicing and dicing the electorate by identity politics and co-opting useful demographics as the key to maintaining power... There is more to Clintonism, I think, than simply playing the “identity politics” card to screw Bernie Sanders or discombobulate the Trump campaign. “Identity politics” is near the core of the Clintonian agenda as a bulwark against any class/populist upheaval that might threaten her brand of billionaire-friendly liberalism. China Matters

The key points

  1. The whole Democratic Party is in trouble as it lost its key constituency. Probably for long time. My feeling is that Dems already lost working class and large part of lower middle. They became the party of professionals and Wall Street speculators. They systematically betrayed union members since Bill Clinton and now the train probably left the station. By estimate of union brass, probably three out of four union members will vote against Hillary this election even if the union endorsed Hillary.
  2. The way Hillary plays identity politics is viewed by many people, especially women as completely dishonest. How she can a champion for woman and minorities right is she was instrumental in killing so many women and children in Iraq, Libya and Syria? What about her defense of 40yars old rapist of 12 years old girl? Those fact this alone our shadows  Trump "transgressions"?  Looks like she overplayed her "identify politics" hand.
  3. The fact that she is a neocon, warmonger, hell-bent on Russophobia (making it the cornerstone of her election strategy) might backfire. She essentially converted Democratic Party into War Party with Russophobia as a banner. Is this that different from neofascism, if we replace Jews with Russians  ?  People do not want yet another war, especially with Russia. Her (and Democratic Party) demonization of Putin is a very dirty election play. Three wars for expansion of neoliberal empire seems to be way too much. Enough is enough.  Her idea of no fly zone in Syria is just a code word for full invasion.  And she is a staunch advocate of "humanizing bombing" of brown people. That might not help her with minorities.
  4. Her important weakness that people view her of compulsive, pathological liar. Few people believe anything that she is promising. Most understand that she is lying and will "bait and switch" them at first opportunity after assuming the office, much like Barack Obama did.
  5. Her "identity politics" and her fake feminism are completely insincere. She is completely numb to human suffering and interests of females and minorities. Looks like she has a total lack of empathy for other people.
  6. For most Sanders supporters she is a right wing Republican -- a wolf in sheep clothing. Some might just prefer to vote for a real wolf, other for Jill Stein. 
  7. In case of election victory her win might well be a Pyrrhic victory. And the unknown neurological disease that she has (Parkinson?) makes her even more vulnerable after the election. The role of POTUS involves a lot of stress and requires substantial physical stamina as POTUS is the center of intersection of all important government conflicts. She is a natural center of all commutations within the government. That's a killing environment for anyone with Parkinson. Possible impeachment and continued leaks might add to the stress too.  And remember she was not able to survive the pressure of the role of the Secretary of State when she was younger, in much better physical and mental health and has an earlier stage of the disease.

Here is one exchange from naked capitalism blog that can extend this  summary brings several other interesting points (nakedcapitalism.com, Oct 05, 2016)

Oct 05, 2016 | www.James Kroeger October 5, 2016 at 8:02 am

So what's a voter to do?

Well, I would hope that informed voters who have a healthy fear of the military-industrial-political complex will vote to keep the scariest of the two re: nuclear war out of office. This particular concern is the reason why I will in all likelihood be voting for the man I've been ridiculing for most of the past year, simply because I am terrified of the prospect of Hillary Clinton as Commander-in-Chief.

Trump is a bad choice for a long list of reasons, but the most outrageous things he has proposed require legislation and I think it will be possible to defeat his essential sociopathy on that level, since he will face not only the opposition of the Dem Party, but also MSM and a significant number of people from his own party.

But when it comes to the President's ability to put American 'boots on the ground' vs. some theoretical enemy, no such approval from Congress is necessary. Hillary Clinton will be in a position to get us into a costly war without having to overcome any domestic opposition to pull it off.

What scares me is my knowledge of her career-long investment in trying to convince the generals and the admirals that she is a 'tough bitch', ala Margaret Thatcher, who will not hesitate to pull the trigger. An illuminating article in the NY Times revealed that she always advocates the most muscular and reckless dispositions of U.S. military forces whenever her opinion is solicited.

All of her experience re: foreign policy that she's been touting is actually the scariest thing about her, when you look at what her historical dispositions have been. The "No Fly Zone" she's been pushing since last year is just the latest example of her instinct to act recklessly, as it directly invites a military confrontation with Russia.

Her willingness to roll the dice, to gamble with other people's lives, is ingrained within her political personality, of which she is so proud.

Her greatest political fear-that she might one day be accused by Republicans of being "weak on America's enemies"-is what we have to fear. That fear is what drives her to the most extreme of war hawk positions, since her foundational strategy is to get out in front of the criticism she anticipates.

It is what we can count on. She will most assuredly get America into a war within the first 6-9 months of her Presidency, since she will be looking forward to the muscular response she will order when she is 'tested', as she expects.

How reckless is Trump likely to be? Well, like Clinton-and all other civilian Commanders-in-Chief, Trump be utterly dependent upon the advice of military professionals in deciding what kind of responses to order. But in the position of The Decider, there is one significant difference between Trump and Clinton. Trump is at least willing and able to 1) view Putin as someone who is not a threat to the United States and 2) is able/willing to question the rationality of America's continued participation in NATO.

These differences alone are enough to move me to actually vote for someone I find politically detestable, simply because I fear that the alternative is a high probability of war, and a greatly enhanced risk of nuclear annihilation-through miscalculation-under a Hillary Clinton Presidency.

Quite simply, she scares the hell out of me.

likbez October 5, 2016 at 9:17 pm
James,

Excellent, really excellent summary. Thank you. Especially this observation:

"Her greatest political fear-that she might one day be accused by Republicans of being "weak on America's enemies"-is what we have to fear. That fear is what drives her to the most extreme of war hawk positions, since her foundational strategy is to get out in front of the criticism she anticipates."

I would like to add a few minor points:

1. Clinton might not have the intellectual capacity to discern critically important distinctions ( http://angrybearblog.com/2015/06/what-worries-me-most-about-clinton-that-she-may-not-have-the-intellectual-capacity-to-discern-even-critically-important-distinctions-even-glaring-ones.html ). From comments: "Hillary is phony as a 3-dollar bill. And I just watched FDR doing his thing on NPR's " The Roosevelts " , reminding me that in universes other than the one I occupy , it's possible to have an outstanding progressive , an outstanding candidate , and an outstanding human being , all in one."

2. She (like most sociopaths, although it is unclear whether she is one or not) is not able to apologize for mistakes. New York Times:

In the end, she settled on language that was similar to Senator John Kerry's when he was the Democratic nominee in 2004: that if she had known in 2002 what she knows now about Iraqi weaponry, she would never have voted for the Senate resolution authorizing force.

Yet antiwar anger has festered, and yesterday morning Mrs. Clinton rolled out a new response to those demanding contrition: She said she was willing to lose support from voters rather than make an apology she did not believe in.

"If the most important thing to any of you is choosing someone who did not cast that vote or has said his vote was a mistake, then there are others to choose from," Mrs. Clinton told an audience in Dover, N.H., in a veiled reference to two rivals for the nomination, Senator Barack Obama of Illinois and former Senator John Edwards of North Carolina.

Her decision not to apologize is regarded so seriously within her campaign that some advisers believe it will be remembered as a turning point in the race: either ultimately galvanizing voters against her (if she loses the nomination), or highlighting her resolve and her willingness to buck Democratic conventional wisdom (if she wins).

At the same time, the level of Democratic anger has surprised some of her allies and advisers, and her campaign is worried about how long it will last and how much damage it might cause her.

3. Due to her greed she and her close entourage represent a huge security risk. Emailgate had shown that as for computer security she is an absolute zero. Absolutely, horribly incompetent and absolutely, horribly greedy (the key idea of private server was to hide her "pay for play" deals related to Clinton foundation). The same level of computer security incompetence is prevalent in her close circle (Huma Abedin, Cheryl Mills, etc) .

4. She strongly believe in the neoconservative foreign-policy agenda by re-casting the neoconservatives' goals in liberal-interventionist terms. In reality the difference between "liberal interventionism" and Neoconservatism are pretty superficial (Kagan already calls himself liberal interventionalist) and Hillary's willingness to infest a foreign-policy establishment with neocons is beyond any doubt and comparable with Bush II.

As the recent Republican primary contest had shown neoconservatives have virtually no support among the US voters. Their base is exclusively military-industrial complex. So the reason she is reaching out to those shady figures is a deceptively simple: she shares common views, respects their supposed expertise, and wants them in her governing coalition. That means that "… today's Democrats have become the Party of War: a home for arms merchants, mercenaries, academic war planners, lobbyists for every foreign intervention, promoters of color revolutions, failed generals, exploiters of the natural resources of corrupt governments. …" ( http://crookedtimber.org/2016/09/27/donald-trump-the-michael-dukakis-of-the-republican-party/#comment-693421 )

5. She is completely numb to human suffering. She has a total lack of empathy for other people.


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[Feb 19, 2020] On Michael Lind's "The New Class War" by Gregor Baszak

Highly recommended!
Notable quotes:
"... To writer Michael Lind, Trump's victory, along with Brexit and other populist stirrings in Europe, was an outright declaration of "class war" by alienated working-class voters against what he calls a "university-credentialed overclass" of managerial elites. ..."
"... Lind cautions against a turn to populism, which he believes to be too personality-centered and intellectually incoherent -- not to mention, too demagogic -- to help solve the terminal crisis of "technocratic neoliberalism" with its rule by self-righteous and democratically unaccountable "experts" with hyperactive Twitter handles. Only a return to what Lind calls "democratic pluralism" will help stem the tide of the populist revolt. ..."
"... Many on the left have been incapable of coming to terms with Hillary Clinton's defeat. The result has been the stifling climate of a neo-McCarthyism, in which the only explanation for Trump's success was an unholy alliance of "Putin stooges" and unrepentant "white supremacists." ..."
"... To Lind, the case is much more straightforward: while the vast majority of Americans supports Social Security spending and containing unskilled immigration, the elites of the bipartisan swamp favor libertarian free trade policies combined with the steady influx of unskilled migrants to help suppress wage levels in the United States. Trump had outflanked his opponents in the Republican primaries and Clinton in the general election by tacking left on the economy (he refused to lay hands on Social Security) and right on immigration. ..."
"... Then, in the 1930s, while the world was writhing from the consequences of the Great Depression, a series of fascist parties took the reigns in countries from Germany to Spain. To spare the United States a similar descent into barbarism, President Franklin D. Roosevelt implemented the New Deal, in which the working class would find a seat at the bargaining table under a government-supervised tripartite system where business and organized labor met seemingly as equals and in which collective bargaining would help the working class set sector-wide wages. ..."
"... This class compromise ruled unquestioned for the first decades of the postwar era. It was made possible thanks to the system of democratic pluralism, which allowed working-class and rural constituencies to actively partake in mass-membership organizations like unions as well as civic and religious institutions that would empower these communities to shape society from the ground up. ..."
"... But then, amid the stagflation crisis of the 1970s, a "neoliberal revolution from above" set in that sought to reverse the class compromise. The most powerful weapon in the arsenal of the newly emboldened managerial class was "global labor arbitrage" in which production is outsourced to countries with lower wage levels and laxer regulations; alternatively, profits can be maximized by putting downward pressure on domestic wages through the introduction of an unskilled, non-unionized immigrant workforce that competes for jobs with its unionized domestic counterparts. By one-sidedly canceling the class compromise that governed the capitalist societies after World War II, Lind concludes, the managerial elite had brought the recent populist backlash on itself. ..."
"... American parties are not organized parties built around active members and policy platforms; they are shifting coalitions of entrepreneurial candidate campaign organizations. Hence, the Democratic and Republican Parties are not only capitalist ideologically; they are capitalistically run enterprises. ..."
"... In the epigraph to the book, Lind cites approvingly the 1949 treatise The Vital Center by historian Arthur Schlesinger Jr. who wrote that "class conflict, pursued to excess, may well destroy the underlying fabric of common principle which sustains free society." Schlesinger was just one among many voices who believed that Western societies after World War II were experiencing the "end of ideology." From now on, the reasoning went, the ideological battles of yesteryear were settled in favor of a more disinterested capitalist (albeit New Deal–inflected) governance. This, in turn, gave rise to the managerial forces in government, the military, and business whose unchecked hold on power Lind laments. The midcentury social-democratic thinker Michael Harrington had it right when he wrote that "[t]he end of ideology is a shorthand way of saying the end of socialism." ..."
"... A cursory glance at the recent impeachment hearings bears witness to this, as career bureaucrats complained that President Trump unjustifiably sought to change the course of an American foreign policy that had been nobly steered by them since the onset of the Cold War. In their eyes, Trump, like the Brexiteers or the French yellow vest protesters, are vulgar usurpers who threaten the stability of the vital center from polar extremes. ..."
Jan 08, 2020 | lareviewofbooks.org

A FEW DAYS AFTER Donald Trump's electoral upset in 2016, Club for Growth co-founder Stephen Moore told an audience of Republican House members that the GOP was "now officially a Trump working class party." No longer the party of traditional Reaganite conservatism, the GOP had been converted instead "into a populist America First party." As he uttered these words, Moore says, "the shock was palpable" in the room.

The Club for Growth had long dominated Republican orthodoxy by promoting low tax rates and limited government. Any conservative candidate for political office wanting to reap the benefits of the Club's massive fundraising arm had to pay homage to this doctrine. For one of its formerly leading voices to pronounce the transformation of this orthodoxy toward a more populist nationalism showed just how much the ground had shifted on election night.

To writer Michael Lind, Trump's victory, along with Brexit and other populist stirrings in Europe, was an outright declaration of "class war" by alienated working-class voters against what he calls a "university-credentialed overclass" of managerial elites. The title of Lind's new book, The New Class War: Saving Democracy from the Managerial Elite , leaves no doubt as to where his sympathies lie, though he's adamant that he's not some sort of guru for a " smarter Trumpism ," as some have labeled him.

Lind cautions against a turn to populism, which he believes to be too personality-centered and intellectually incoherent -- not to mention, too demagogic -- to help solve the terminal crisis of "technocratic neoliberalism" with its rule by self-righteous and democratically unaccountable "experts" with hyperactive Twitter handles. Only a return to what Lind calls "democratic pluralism" will help stem the tide of the populist revolt.

The New Class War is a breath of fresh air. Many on the left have been incapable of coming to terms with Hillary Clinton's defeat. The result has been the stifling climate of a neo-McCarthyism, in which the only explanation for Trump's success was an unholy alliance of "Putin stooges" and unrepentant "white supremacists."

To Lind, the case is much more straightforward: while the vast majority of Americans supports Social Security spending and containing unskilled immigration, the elites of the bipartisan swamp favor libertarian free trade policies combined with the steady influx of unskilled migrants to help suppress wage levels in the United States. Trump had outflanked his opponents in the Republican primaries and Clinton in the general election by tacking left on the economy (he refused to lay hands on Social Security) and right on immigration.

The strategy has since been successfully repeated in the United Kingdom by Boris Johnson, and it looks, for now, like a foolproof way for conservative parties in the West to capture or defend their majorities against center-left parties that are too beholden to wealthy, metropolitan interests to seriously attract working-class support. Berating the latter as irredeemably racist certainly doesn't help either.

What happened in the preceding decades to produce this divide in Western democracies? Lind's narrative begins with the New Deal, which had brought to an end what he calls "the first class war" in favor of a class compromise between management and labor. This first class war is the one we are the most familiar with: originating in the Industrial Revolution, which had produced the wretchedly poor proletariat, it soon led to the rise of competing parties of organized workers on the one hand and the liberal bourgeoisie on the other, a clash that came to a head in the Bolshevik Revolution of 1917. Then, in the 1930s, while the world was writhing from the consequences of the Great Depression, a series of fascist parties took the reigns in countries from Germany to Spain. To spare the United States a similar descent into barbarism, President Franklin D. Roosevelt implemented the New Deal, in which the working class would find a seat at the bargaining table under a government-supervised tripartite system where business and organized labor met seemingly as equals and in which collective bargaining would help the working class set sector-wide wages.

This class compromise ruled unquestioned for the first decades of the postwar era. It was made possible thanks to the system of democratic pluralism, which allowed working-class and rural constituencies to actively partake in mass-membership organizations like unions as well as civic and religious institutions that would empower these communities to shape society from the ground up.

But then, amid the stagflation crisis of the 1970s, a "neoliberal revolution from above" set in that sought to reverse the class compromise. The most powerful weapon in the arsenal of the newly emboldened managerial class was "global labor arbitrage" in which production is outsourced to countries with lower wage levels and laxer regulations; alternatively, profits can be maximized by putting downward pressure on domestic wages through the introduction of an unskilled, non-unionized immigrant workforce that competes for jobs with its unionized domestic counterparts. By one-sidedly canceling the class compromise that governed the capitalist societies after World War II, Lind concludes, the managerial elite had brought the recent populist backlash on itself.

Likewise, only it can contain this backlash by returning to the bargaining table and reestablishing the tripartite system it had walked away from. According to Lind, the new class peace can only come about on the level of the individual nation-state because transnational treaty organizations like the EU cannot allow the various national working classes to escape the curse of labor arbitrage. This will mean that unskilled immigration will necessarily have to be curbed to strengthen the bargaining power of domestic workers. The free-market orthodoxy of the Club for Growth will also have to take a backseat, to be replaced by government-promoted industrial strategies that invest in innovation to help modernize their national economies.

Under which circumstances would the managerial elites ever return to the bargaining table? "The answer is fear," Lind suggests -- fear of working-class resentment of hyper-woke, authoritarian elites. Ironically, this leaves all the agency with the ruling class, who first acceded to the class compromise, then canceled it, and is now called on to forge a new one lest its underlings revolt.

Lind rightly complains all throughout the book that the old mass-membership based organizations of the 20th century have collapsed. He's coy, however, about who would reconstitute them and how. At best, Lind argues for a return to the old system where party bosses and ward captains served their local constituencies through patronage, but once more this leaves the agency with entities like the Republicans and Democrats who have a combined zero members. As the third-party activist Howie Hawkins remarked cunningly elsewhere ,

American parties are not organized parties built around active members and policy platforms; they are shifting coalitions of entrepreneurial candidate campaign organizations. Hence, the Democratic and Republican Parties are not only capitalist ideologically; they are capitalistically run enterprises.

Thus, they would hardly be the first options one would think of to reinvigorate the forces of civil society toward self-rule from the bottom up.

The key to Lind's fraught logic lies hidden in plain sight -- in the book's title. Lind does not speak of "class struggle ," the heroic Marxist narrative in which an organized proletariat strove for global power; no, "class war " smacks of a gloomy, Hobbesian war of all against all in which no side truly stands to win.

In the epigraph to the book, Lind cites approvingly the 1949 treatise The Vital Center by historian Arthur Schlesinger Jr. who wrote that "class conflict, pursued to excess, may well destroy the underlying fabric of common principle which sustains free society." Schlesinger was just one among many voices who believed that Western societies after World War II were experiencing the "end of ideology." From now on, the reasoning went, the ideological battles of yesteryear were settled in favor of a more disinterested capitalist (albeit New Deal–inflected) governance. This, in turn, gave rise to the managerial forces in government, the military, and business whose unchecked hold on power Lind laments. The midcentury social-democratic thinker Michael Harrington had it right when he wrote that "[t]he end of ideology is a shorthand way of saying the end of socialism."

Looked at from this perspective, the break between the postwar Fordist regime and technocratic neoliberalism isn't as massive as one would suppose. The overclass antagonists of The New Class War believe that they derive their power from the same "liberal order" of the first-class peace that Lind upholds as a positive utopia. A cursory glance at the recent impeachment hearings bears witness to this, as career bureaucrats complained that President Trump unjustifiably sought to change the course of an American foreign policy that had been nobly steered by them since the onset of the Cold War. In their eyes, Trump, like the Brexiteers or the French yellow vest protesters, are vulgar usurpers who threaten the stability of the vital center from polar extremes.

A more honest account of capitalism would also acknowledge its natural tendencies to persistently contract and to disrupt the social fabric. There is thus no reason to believe why some future class compromise would once and for all quell these tendencies -- and why nationalistically operating capitalist states would not be inclined to confront each other again in war.

Gregor Baszak is a PhD candidate in English at the University of Illinois at Chicago. His Twitter handle is @gregorbas1.

Stourley Kracklite 20 days ago • edited ,

Reagan was a free-trader and a union buster. Lind's people jumped the Democratic ship to vote for Reagan in (lemming-like) droves. As Republicans consolidated power over labor with cheap goods from China and the meth of deficit spending Democrats struggled with being necklaced as the party of civil rights.
The idea that people who are well-informed ought not to govern is a sad and sick cover story that the culpable are forced to chant in their caves until their days are done, the reckoning being too great.

[Feb 16, 2020] Want to End Our Endless Wars Remember the Peace of Westphalia

Feb 16, 2020 | www.theamericanconservative.com

hen a crisis in the 17th-century Holy Roman Empire about princely authority and autonomy spiraled into sectarian warfare, Central Europe was plunged into the Thirty Years War. It was to be a conflict so debilitating and deadly that it would prove more proportionally costly in casualties for what is now Germany than even the Second World War. When the Peace of Westphalia finally brought the nightmare to a close in 1648, it was clear that domestic politics had to be separated from diplomacy for any stability to return to Europe. So came an emphasis on the sovereignty of states to police their own affairs while retaining a standardized system for dealing with each other as (ostensible) equals in the international realm.

While no system can guarantee peace free from geopolitical upset, The Westphalian Peace was nonetheless an improvement over the religious wars of the past. Something like it would also be an improvement over the rampant, American-led liberal hegemony of today. The ideologies of permanent war have had disproportionate influence over the ruling cliques in Washington, D.C., from the Clintonite neoliberals to the Dick Cheney neoconservatives. There are very real material reasons for this, of course, such as defense contracting and the powerful lobbying behind it. But it was on purely ideological terms that America's dangerous imperial overstretch was sold to a domestic audience.

Those like former U.N. ambassador Samantha Power would have us believe that there are teeming masses of people abroad just yearning to have American bombs rained down upon them as a solution for their domestic woes. Yet for most of American history, this was not so. The early and rising United States was a nation of diplomats who had taken the lessons of Westphalia to heart. From George Washington and John Quincy Adams up through the start of the 20th century, the importance of keeping domestic ideological arrangements out of sober realist diplomacy was usually understood. It was Woodrow Wilson who departed from this arrangement with his commitment to establishing the United States as guarantor not only of the rights of its own citizens but also the people of foreign nations abroad. His unrealistic vision was rejected by both Congress and most of the world's other great powers. Still, Britain and America were influenced enough by his thinking to stand aghast when first Japan and then Italy and Germany went about sabotaging the fragile postwar order. It would take a second, more destructive war, with the United States and the U.S.S.R. creating a peace out of their victorious power, to undo the damage that had been done. Two countries that could not have been more internally different became the crux of the most important wartime alliance of the 20th century. Largely forgotten was that the top crime pursued by the allies during the Germans' postwar trial was that of " waging aggressive war ."

Since the end of the Cold War, and with the checks on America's ambitions largely removed, we have seen this Wilsonian messianism return, and stronger than before. America's cultural history of puritanism and faith in its own (culturally and historically specific) institutions has merged with an unchecked hubris. Interventions unrelated to the interests of the average American came in the Balkans and Somalia, and then expanded to nearly the entire Middle East and large swathes of Africa. The justification is always the 9/11 terror attacks. The Bush administration in particular merged all of these trends by marrying the images of apocalyptic religious struggle to the Wilsonian quest for a world order founded on a universal conception of rights. When weapons of mass destruction, the ostensible reason for the invasion of Iraq, failed to turn up, Bush quickly pivoted to another argument: that we would build a new and better Iraq Americanized through our concept of civil society. What we got was the rise of ISIS, sectarian strife, and an empowered Iran greatly expanding its influence throughout that region. It was an outcome abundantly obvious to the many experts who were opposed to the war from the outset.

This turn towards militarized humanism became even more overt as the Obama administration reacted to the Arab Spring. Lacking the WMD excuse and post-9/11 bellicosity, the administration that was elected in large part to replace and undo the Bush legacy decided to topple the government of Libya and indirectly try to do the same in Syria. The administration tapped into a large network of human rights NGOs to fill the media with stories of atrocities, many of which were exaggerated or even outright false .

What was the result? Libya is a now a Somalia-level failed state with street-side slave markets that's fueled a European refugee crisis. The Syrian Civil War continues towards a now inevitable conclusion, heavily extended in length by the interventions of countries like Turkey and Saudi Arabia working hand-in-hand with the United States . Those interventions were sold to the public under the guise of upholding universal standards of government as imagined by the United States, but have only contributed to global instability and alienation of much of the world from Washington .

In order to inoculate the American public, media, and (dare one hope) policymaking class against future foolhardy adventures, the Westphalian Peace should be reintroduced into the disussion. The foreign policy establishment is largely controlled by a class of professionals in love with their own image as upholders of liberal hegemony and oblivious to the results of their actions. From empowering al-Qaeda in the Middle East to driving Russia and China together, the consequences have proven catastrophic. It is time to stick up for the concept of national sovereignty as the core principle of diplomacy once again.

It was the France, the Catholic power willing to ally with Protestants against its greater Hapsburg foe regardless of domestic politics, that won the most out of the Thirty Years War and at the lowest cost. Such realism in pursuit of modest goals should inform our diplomatic thinking today.

Christopher Mott is a research fellow at Defense Priorities and a former academic and researcher at the State Department. His book on Central Asian geopolitical history, The Formless Empire , was published by Westholme Publishing in 2015.


Sammacdon 3 days ago

"America's cultural history of puritanism and faith in its own (culturally and historically specific) institutions has merged with an unchecked hubris."

Does America have faith in its culturally and historically specific institutions?

Which ones?

Baruch Dreamstalker Sammacdon 3 days ago
America still supports the Bill of Rights for oneself, but not always for others. Listen to how "religious freedom" differs when articulated by a liberal and a conservative.
Baruch Dreamstalker 3 days ago
There's a new player since Westphalia, the soldiers without borders known commonly as terrorists. Arguing about whose fault it is that they exist is as fruitless as "Who lost China?" The article, alas, deals with them only as epiphenomena of great-power actions. C+.
JonF311 Baruch Dreamstalker 3 days ago
But if we weren't poking a big old wasp's nest in the Middle East would any of those terrorists give a hoot about us? We would still have to worry about domestic terrorists, of course.
Baruch Dreamstalker JonF311 3 days ago
Absolutely, about domestic terrorists, who are an old story from the days they were called "clinic bombers."

"Our enemies are our fault" is an invitation to become extinct. I don't go there.

Soldiers without borders are part of the picture now, and the most persuasive assignment of responsibility for them may take gold in the 50-Yard Blame Toss, but is still a "should" non-answer to an "is" problem.

Begemot Baruch Dreamstalker 2 days ago
soldiers without borders known commonly as terrorists

Also known as mercenaries, who aren't new at all. In fact, they've enjoyed something of a revitalization since 2001 with such 'private military contractors" as Blackwater/Xe Services/Academi and its imitators. Courtesy of the US government.

David Naas 3 days ago
Many times in history one can point to as the embodiment of "realism" in international affairs. After Westphalia came the Napoleonic wars and the Congress of Vienna. Some time later came WW1/WW2/Cold War (really one conflict) and no real settlement (with the USA presuming a foolish "End of History" and a faux Superpower hegemony.)

I am reminded that Henry Kissinger was supposed to be a master of realpolitik , and we saw how well that worked. The last real decent politician who understood things may have been Otto von Bismarck, and he was cast aside by a neurotic Kaiser who hated his English grandmother.

The author makes a very good point... That waging aggressive wars is a crime for which we hung people at Nuremberg. But let us not forget the reality of realism, the Roman maxim of, "If you have trouble at home, stir up a war abroad." Works like a charm, or always has before.

kouroi 3 days ago
High goal in the United States of Amnesia.... remembering something...
If anything, the elites would like to bury as much as possible... so that the conclusion is always their alternative only...
Disqus10021 2 days ago • edited
Unless there are members of Congress who were European history majors, I doubt that any of them could tell you much about the Peace of Westphalia. I would be satisfied if they could at least learn some lessons from WWI. One of the best takeaways from that war that I have read was David Stockman's (Reagan's first Budget Director) observation that if the US had just stayed out of the war, the major belligerents would eventually have come to a cease fire and Germany would not have been plunged into chaos after the war. Another takeaway comes from William Shirer's "The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich". The German government paid for its war costs by issuing bonds and when its access to the bond market became exhausted, it simply resorted to printing money. After the war, it not only did not raise taxes to pay off its reparations and other war debts but lowered them.

Germany's Weimar constitution which was approved in 1919 looked good on paper and was very democratic for its time. But it never worked well in practice. The country was beset by a series of weak coalition governments during the Weimar years, governments which were incapable of stopping the runaway inflation of the early 1920's and incapable of dealing with the economic fallout as the Great Depression spread from the US to Europe in the early 1930's.

Dr. Rieux 2 days ago • edited
I doubt our foreign policy "elites" are oblivious to the results of their actions. That degree of self-imposed ignorance even Washinton's "best" and "brightest" couldn't possibly achieve.

What they are is immune to the consequences of their actions, never called to account for the millions of innocent lives they helped to ruin or to completely snuff out.

mark 2 days ago
Baruch says "There's a new player since Westphalia, the soldiers without borders known commonly as terrorists. "

Terrorism has suffered a lazy and opportunistic amount of definition creep in recent decades. I go by the old idea that it's about using unforeseen violence against civilians for political ends.

However to me, the vast bulk of terrorism is state terror and states really hate it when privateers muscle in on their act. For example the morning after the 9-11 bombings (I live a long way from the US) I had two immediate thoughts. First and foremost was sadness for the dead and their families. Second was an awful foreboding for the many thousands of innocent brown foreign civilians who'd die in misplaced criminal revenge aka state terror.

Connecticut Farmer a day ago • edited
"It was the France, the Catholic power willing to ally with Protestants against its greater Hapsburg foe regardless of domestic politics, that won the most out of the Thirty Years War and at the lowest cost."

Be reminded, however, France's victory lasted 115 years--ten minutes in historical terms--coming to an end with the Treaty of Paris in 1763 which ended The Seven Years War which resulted in bankruptcy for the Bourbon monarchy and eventual domestic upheaval commencing in 1789. After the defeat of Napoleon (the inevitable result of said upheaval) and as a result of the Congress of Vienna in 1815 France was pretty much finished off as a world power. Nothing is ever permanent. Except war.

"Those like former U.N. ambassador Samantha Power would have us believe that there are teeming masses of people abroad just yearning to have American bombs rained down upon them as a solution for their domestic woes."

The author is engaging in a bit of hyperbole here. Changing "have American bombs rained down upon them" to "enjoy the fruits of American-style democracy" would suffice. Same conclusion. Same results.

Paul De Palma 21 hours ago
Thanks for such an incisive framing of US foreign policy over the last century and, in particular, the last twenty years. In its crispness and clarity, your piece is on par with Andrew Bacevich's work. It deserves a wide readership.

[Feb 15, 2020] One face of the US voters desprations with establishment candidates

Highly recommended!
Feb 15, 2020 | www.moonofalabama.org

Antoinetta III , Feb 15 2020 21:47 utc | 55

In the past several elections, in the space for "President," I wrote in - Vladimir Putin.

Antoinetta III

[Feb 15, 2020] But they do put on a good show, don't they?

Feb 15, 2020 | www.moonofalabama.org

Jackrabbit , Feb 15 2020 19:18 utc | 18

Interesting analysis b.

Here's another view: Zionist Bloomberg and Zionist Biden and Zionist Buttigieg and Zionist Klubachar and Zionist Warren and Zionist Sanders competing to race against Zionist Trump. I think I know who the winners and losers are already.

But they do put on a good show, don't they?

!!

[Feb 09, 2020] DNC Is Setting The Stage For An Irrevocable Split Of The Party

Feb 09, 2020 | www.zerohedge.com

Authored by Tom Luongo via Gold, Goats, 'n Guns blog,

If there is one thing that is clear as we end this truly insane week it is that it was a good one for President Donald Trump.

Between his acquittal in the Senate over an impeachment that is the apotheosis of three years of patent nonsense and the fiasco that were the Iowa caucuses, Trump comes out of this first week of February in better shape than he's been since he won the election back in 2016.

The Democrats have made a complete mockery of their candidate selection process. At least back in 2016 when Trump knocked people off one by one the GOP didn't openly try to rig primaries against him.

Of course, Trump isn't as much of an outsider as he portrays himself, so his real threat to the entrenched political establishment in The Swamp was never as great as someone like, say, Ron Paul's was in 2012.

But the depths the DNC are willing to dig deep to in order to stop Bernie Sanders from being their nominee are truly breathtaking. In 2016, the Clinton machine had declared her the candidate. Bernie was getting in the way of her coronation as the first woman president.

In 2020, however, no one actually running for the Democratic nomination, except maybe Bernie Sanders in a perfect world, can actually beat Donald Trump. So, the whole process is really academic at this point.

Honestly, after this week the only person who can beat Trump nationally is Trump himself. So, that leaves me with 65/35 odds he'll be re-elected.

But with impeachment behind him, an agenda of retribution against his accusers ahead of him and a Democratic party deep in the preparations for committing ritualistic suicide Trump should have no problem carrying at least as many states as he did in 2016.

Caitlyn Johnstone believes that the DNC's ineptitude is a ruse, a clever ploy to look stupid and corrupt but doing so to ensure their preferred outcome, which is a brokered convention and the return of Hillary Clinton from the grave, as I said recently , "like some zombie whose head we forgot to cut off."

While I love Ms. Johnstone's thesis, I think she's missing the much more salient point. As the Democrats flop from one fiasco to the next, they are doing two very important things.

This is why no matter who is eventually declared the winner in Iowa, the winner there is Donald Trump.

And, guess what? There's only 49 more states like this to go!

I'm really regretting swearing off popcorn.

The good news is that, for now, the markets recognize that the biggest threat to U.S. political stability has been averted. Stocks bolted to new all-time highs after Trump's acquittal, but couldn't follow through to end the week.

It only gets better from here if the DNC is set on sowing distrust, chaos beneath a veneer of practiced stupidity.

So, while there are a number of sincere challenges to global growth both right in front of us (the coronavirus) and far ahead of us (the growing insolvency of the European financial system now that Brexit is finished) equity markets are more than capable of rallying for the next few sessions.

But expect volatility to increase from here. The dollar is strengthening. While the euro narrowly avoided a catastrophic January close last Friday, the dominant bear trend reasserted itself with a vengeance this week, breaking below the all-important $1.10 level.

And that should finally see eurobond prices begin to collapse. The rally we've seen over the past two weeks has been nothing short of ridiculous. A classic 'false move.'

Oil is now in a bear market after 2018's reaction high above $86 per barrel Brent and the terrible results and guidance from industry leaders this week like Exxon-Mobil (XOM) and Royal Dutch Shell (RDS.A) only reinforce that view. If not for some noises from OPEC+ and the hopes that Russia will go along with extending current production cuts kept Brent from collapsing further this week as shorts piled on early.

But everything comes down to King Dollar and whether real fear which lurks just behind the headlines grips the plumbing of global markets, which had an outstanding week.

This surge in the dollar confirms the December low as significant which sets up a difficult few months. Given everything else we're experiencing from the shutdown of major Chinese cities, travel, etc. there's every reason to be cautious here even if the equity markets keep grinding higher, though I'd expect a whole lotta grinding sideways from both equities and gold while this goes on.

Expect a lot of this schizophrenic behavior as capital sloshes from stem to stern trying to figure out where it should best be deployed in this age of central bank heroin .

The central banks are still desperate to keep a lid on volatility to extend the lie that they have things under control, but if that's the case then why is the Fed still having to deal with repo market interventions being oversubscribed and the rate creeping back up toward its target Fed Funds rate and IOER (Interest on Excess Reserves)?

They've lost control over the short end of the yield curve.

And that's where things get interesting for this election cycle.

For Trump, the primary season should work out well as the Democrats continue imploding. And I have no doubt he will now go on the warpath to take down those who he rightly feels wronged him and the country. And he'll be merciless on Twitter using it to goad the Democrats into even more lunacy, more mistakes.

This is what he truly excels at and it will all but guarantee him surviving any crises that appear on the horizon between now and November.

For now, New Hampshire is next. Bernie should win the most votes it in a walk. But the real winner, regardless of anything else will be Trump.

* * *

Join My Patreon if you like looking at the world a little differently . Install and Use the Brave Browser if you want to help us continue talking about it.


Alice-the-dog , 7 minutes ago link

DNC is trying to drive Bernie and Tulsi out of the party. What they don't realize is that doing so will irrevocably drive more than their supporters out as well, as the party faithful realize their faith is unfounded.

HRClinton , 11 hours ago link

Let's not gloat too much here.

The GOP Old Guard screwed over the Libertarian wing also for years. Exhibit A: Ron Paul.

It boils down to this:

It does not matter if you are Democrat leaning or Republican leaning. As soon as you attempt to do any real and fundamental change, banksters bring out their big guns and fund whatever candidate or party to maintain the status quo. US elections are about tinkering around the edges, never about fundamental improvements that would be to the detriment of the banksters.

If you have an IQ >100, more than one testicle and the mental clarity, then you know that the true enemy is and always has been: International Banksters. Without them there could be no MIC, no Wars, no welfare for the rich and no excess of socialism for the poor. Without them, perpetual deficit financing would be impossible. They alone are the financial drug dealers who keep everyone addicted.

Nothing will change until you bring out the proverbial pitchforks, rope and guillotines.

LightBeamCowboy , 12 hours ago link

"But with impeachment behind him, an agenda of retribution against his accusers ahead of him ..."

An "agenda of retribution" is exactly what Dems want us to think this is. But when these cases reach court, we'll find out that they are just normal criminal prosecutions, for real crimes, with real evidence, that would have been brought to the arrest phase a long time ago except that Trump has taken all the time necessary to gather evidence on the one hand, and to let the Dems exhaust their quiver of anti-Trump arrows on the other. Think back to July 5th, 2016 when James Comey went in front of the cameras and rattled off a long list of serious crimes by Hillary and then said she wasn't going to be prosecuted. Trump could have brought charges on January 20th, 2017 but he didn't. These last three years have been the largest, most thorough criminal investigation, of the largest number of people, in human history. Brace yourself for the next phase. And BTW, the sealed indictments are up to 144,844 nationwide.

Mzhen , 11 hours ago link

November 9, 2019 -- "I caught the Swamp. I caught them all. Let's see what happens."

stevesmith- , 15 hours ago link

If were not for Bernie Sanders single-handily, we would not have 'democratic socialism' whatever that means...no one in the democratic party pushes socialism like he does...somehow Warren got 'tied up in the moment' and went with Medicare for All, then backed off. Let him win the nomination, he will be crushed, like Jeremy Corbyn, and the the USA 'socialist movement' will end...there are NO young Bernie Sanders out there...so another 4 years of Trump, but the democrats can remake themselves more center focused. If the Republicans win President, Senate and House, good chance for rebound as usually the ruling party takes the hit and dems get their chance again 2024...their is always hope. New leadership (Schumer, Pelosi and Perez) will also be needed required for a new era.

rtb61 , 16 hours ago link

The Democrats are not imploding, the scam that turned the Democrat Party, the workers party, into another Republican party another bosses party, is failing. The democrats were more corrupt than the Republicans because the Clinton's sold the Democrats to the Corporations, pretended to be the workers party, whilst kicking all the workers out.

The scam is ending. Now the scam where the Republican party was stolen from conservative libertarians to the Corporations, also needs to be tackled.

The USA is a very long way from being a democracy.

uhland62 , 16 hours ago link

Sanders and Gabbard can never be elected to high office. America gets it up on destroying other countries with wars.

As long as America rules the waves there can be no peace - peace candidates will be sidelined in all manner of ways.

algol_dog , 17 hours ago link

I disagree that Sanders can't beat Trump. It's 4 more years later, with another 4 years extra of youth able to vote for this guy. It's been stated before, the new generations have been brought up suckling on the socialist tit of the American school system and media for over 20+ years and they are as indoctrinated as any 20th Century socialist enthusiast. Only a matter of time before the chickens come home to roost. With Trump the battle may have been won, but the war will likely be lost unless something drastically changes. - My $.02

HRClinton , 17 hours ago link

In another ZH article, Steve Banning pointed out that both Sanders and Trump have identified fundamental/similar problems in the country, but that they differ on how to solve them. Not sure about that being true of reality.

I'd argue that both parties are destroying the US with Crony Capitalism and Bifurcated Socialism.

Crony capitalism is letting the rich (1%) get richer.

Bifurcated Socialism is where the TBTF and the MIC get obscene amounts of fiat money on one extreme, and the very poor get just enough welfare to keep them from starting a French Revolution.

Everyone else in the middle (the 20-99%) has to deal with Darwinian Capitalism - survival of the fittest.

The only true winners are the banks and (((those))) closest to the source of money creation, because both militarism and socialism keep increasing the debt burden . Alas, 99.9% off the population and 95% of ZH bloggers fail to see this, and will opt to attack one side or the other - in this Banksters game of Divide and Conquer.

USAllDay , 16 hours ago link

Central Banking is antithesis to Free Markets. The cost of interest is price fixed by a monopoly bank. Not only can the FED create money, but with that money they create artificial demand. The wealth gap will never close so long as the Federal Reserve exist.

[Feb 09, 2020] Michael Lind on Reviving Democracy - The American Interest

Notable quotes:
"... The New Class War: Saving Democracy from the Managerial Elite ..."
"... The New Class War: Saving Democracy from the Managerial Elite ..."
"... The American Interest ..."
Feb 09, 2020 | www.the-american-interest.com

Michael Lind on Reviving Democracy Aaron Sibarium To fix things, we must acknowledge the nature of the problem. T he Cold War may have ended, but the class war rages on -- or so Michael Lind argues in The New Class War: Saving Democracy from the Managerial Elite . TAI assistant editor Aaron Sibarium recently sat down with Lind to discuss this argument, and what it means for democracy in our populist era. This is a lightly edited transcript of the conversation.

Aaron Sibarium for TAI: You have a new book out: The New Class War: Saving Democracy from the Managerial Elite . What is the new class war?

Michael Lind : It's the conflict that has broken out between the college-credentialed, university-educated managerial and professional class, which dominates Western democracies on both sides of the Atlantic, and the high school-educated working class of all races and national origins, which is about two-thirds of the population. I argue that there was a kind of class peace treaty, or what political scientists call a "settlement," between capitalists, managers, and the working class for a couple of decades following 1945 that broke down in the late 20 th century, largely as a result of the atrophy of the institutions that had amplified the power of less educated working-class people. The most important of these were trade unions, churches, and other religious organizations, as well as local mass membership parties -- parties of political machines at the local level.

As a result of that breakdown, there's just been a shift of power and influence in all three realms: the economy, the culture, and government. And I argue the frustration this has created on behalf of much of the population has ultimately led to a lot of the populist rebellions we're seeing: the election of Trump, the Brexit vote in Europe, the Yellow Vest revolts in France.

AS : Part of the story here is the rise of a "managerial elite," as you call it, which differs in important ways from the elite it displaced. What are the distinct features of this managerial class?

ML : I don't claim any particular originality here. I follow James Burnham, a one-time influential American Trotskyist who became one of the founders of postwar American conservatism. In his book The Managerial Revolution written during World War II, he argued that the Marxists were wrong. The two major classes in the Western world in the 1940s were not workers and capitalists, but workers and managers. Because at that point, thanks to the rise of large corporations, there was what Berle and Means in their classic study of the corporation described as separation of ownership and control. And you had this bureaucratic corporate executive class who were not necessarily the biggest shareholders. Particularly nowadays when shared ownership is widely dispersed and fluctuating, it's kind of a legal fiction to say that the shareholders are the owners of the corporation, and that the managers are merely passive agents.

So that was the argument. Burnham argued -- and I follow him -- that the managerial elite includes far more than corporate executives. It includes professionals, experts of all kinds, civil servants, and also the military, which he argued would become increasingly influential in societies. Meanwhile, only one-third of the working class was ever industrial workers -- the rest were service and clerical workers. But at present, as a result of automation and productivity growth, most new working class jobs are in hospitality and leisure, healthcare and retail. And those tend to be very poorly paid and very non-union jobs. So the migration of employment from the unionized manufacturing sector to these sectors has contributed to inequality.

AS : A common libertarian argument holds that if you look at the data, working-class living standards have improved, so everything's more or less fine. To the extent there is a crisis, it's one more of perception than fact. How do you respond to this argument?

ML : Well, it's true: As a result of technological progress poor people have access to all kinds of technology that rich people did not have a century ago. The problem with libertarians is they're like Marxists, and even some progressives: They think money is everything. The problem with libertarians is they're like Marxists, and even some progressives: They think money is everything. They ignore power. They ignore dignity. So the basic premise is, "well, you've lost your unions, which amplified your influence if you only had a high school diploma, but in return you make $500 more a year, so it's a wash."

I find it very odd because the whole basis of American republicanism, small-r republicanism, is the idea that ordinary people should have power and that there should be checks and balances. The idea is not that you can have a dictatorship or an autocracy or an aristocracy as long as it pays compensation to everyone else.

AS : Here at the magazine, we're very interested in reviving what we call the political center. In the book you note that the center of elite opinion is very different from the center of working-class opinion -- even as your emphasis on class compromise sounds, well, kind of centrist. Do you identify as a centrist? And what do you think are the biggest mistakes that self-styled centrists have made?

ML : Marx said, "I'm not a Marxist," so I like saying that I, Michael Lind, am not a Lindist. I'm less interested in sticking out a position on the political spectrum -- either the elite spectrum or the working-class spectrum, which are your two different political spectrums -- than I am in nation-building. And how do you rebuild a functioning democratic nation-state in which politics is not all about 51 percent trying to annihilate 49 percent? I think we have to be as inclusive as possible. In the book, I call this "democratic pluralism," the idea being that you have to have a government based on compromise.

But before you can have compromise, you have to acknowledge the reality of conflict. You have to admit that the conflicts are legitimate. Because if one side is simply wrong or one side is simply evil, then there's no point in compromise. So democratic pluralism is a very realistic view of politics. It's arguably the case that employers and employees have clashing interests on things like trade and immigration. There is no one objective policy, so you have to negotiate and make trade-offs. Different religious groups and secular people have equally legitimate values. They have to coexist in the same society.

And when it comes to matters of class, the vast majority of working-class people simply are going to be outweighed in politics and in the media by the minority of very well-educated and very well-financed people. So they have to have their own organizations to exercise what the economist John Kenneth Galbraith called "countervailing power." But my vision is one of compromise and negotiation. It's not that a group of experts gets together and decides what the ideal policy is and then the government just imposes this. I don't know in advance what the ideal policy is for Uber and Lyft drivers. I think that the drivers should have some kind of collective representation and should be able to negotiate with their employers. But if they can come up with a solution that's acceptable to both, that's fine with me.

AS : You say that under democratic pluralism, the state serves as a kind of brokering agent between labor and capital. Could you elaborate on the role of the state in this negotiating structure?

ML : The libertarian or classical liberal view of government is that it's an umpire. It doesn't have any commitment to one side or another, or even to one country or another, according to libertarianism; it just enforces the rules. Whoever wins, wins. But the democratic pluralist tradition sees the democratic nation-state as the coach of a team. And the team includes the national managerial elite and investors and workers, who are all competing with other nations. So democratic pluralism involves some degree of economic nationalism.

It's not necessarily leading to war or anything like that. It's just that all the different countries are trying to make their own people more prosperous. And so as a result of that, the government can step in and keep the different groups in society from ripping each other apart. But at the same time it should not just try to dictate things from above. So that's why I think the coach metaphor is better than the umpire metaphor.

AS : Would you say that this more thoroughgoing concept of democratic representation is just a means to class compromise, or is it a normative end in itself?

ML : I think it's a means to an end. The normative end is national unity. And that's why, even though some of this sounds vaguely Marxist, the premise is not that the working class is going to destroy and replace the managerial class. Every society, including communist societies, have had managerial elites in the modern world. And you have to have them. You have to have experts. You have to have managers. And in practice, they will probably pass on their advantages to their children to some degree. You even see this in communist industrial countries. So the goal is to give the working-class majority the weapons to enforce a compromise, to draw some concessions from the managerial elite.

If the working class were too strong and were threatening to cripple the managerial elite, I would be for strengthening the managers against an overly powerful working class. But the goal is national unity. It's what Henry Carey , the Whig economist in the 19 th century who was an advisor to Abraham Lincoln, called "the harmony of interests." And there's this older Hamiltonian tradition that rejected the Jeffersonian and Jacksonian idea that there's a battle to the death between capital and labor in favor of the idea that they're partners in a common project of national development and national construction. But the government is not simply a passive figure. It's actively bringing them together and regulating their partnership.

AS : You write that under democratic pluralism, "legislatures can cede large areas of policymaking to those with higher stakes and expertise." That framing sounds a bit like some defenses of the administrative state, of which you are a partial critic. What role, if any, do administrative agencies have in brokering class compromise?

ML : There have been two kinds of administrative agencies that are somewhat independent of direct presidential political control since the progressive era. One kind is the very technocratic agency where you get the experts who are insulated, they're altruistic, they're wise, they have degrees from Ivy League universities. And whatever they want is supposedly good for the public. I'm very suspicious of this for obvious reasons. The other kind is associated with a lot of the New Deal agencies that were created. And we have to remember the New Deal was a farmer-labor alliance. It was an alliance of the working class and the family farmers who had been excluded from the first stage of industrialization in the United States. They realized that Congress cannot possibly make detailed regulations for everything in an industrial economy, but at the same time they did not want to turn over vast discretionary power to a bunch of "pointy heads," as George Wallace would say, from the Ivy League universities.

So their compromise was to create sector-specific organizations: the FCC, the Agriculture Department, and various independent agencies where interest groups were represented and could influence policy, even if only informally. Now, libertarians hate this because they see it as corruption for the interest groups to influence policy. A certain kind of technocratic progressive hates it because the people who make policy are not supposed to actually be from that field -- that's their definition of corruption. But to my mind it makes sense, because if you're going to make policy for family farmers, you should probably talk to family farmers. If you're going to make policy for taxi drivers, then represent the taxi drivers and consult with them.

By the same token, I think we have a very unrealistic view of the omnicompetent legislator. We have this idea that if you're a Senator, today you're going to make policy for farming and tomorrow you're going to make it for pilots, and the day after that you're going to make it for religious liberty. Having worked in state legislatures, I can tell you that doesn't happen. What happens is that one or two members of the legislature are known as experts in a particular field. Usually they have some connection with that field, and their fellow legislators -- often across party lines -- defer to their expertise. So one of the things I argue is that we should not be afraid to delegate some policymaking authority to administrative agencies, on the condition that they represent interest groups, particularly working-class interest groups, whose views might be ignored otherwise.

AS : How much of the current working-class ferment is due to a feeling of powerlessness, and how much of it is due to the people in power making bad decisions? Put another way, if elites had taken better care of the working class without actually giving them much substantive representation, would the working class still be in revolt? To what extent is this about powerlessness qua powerlessness versus not getting some preferred policy outcome?

ML : I think you can make that distinction in theory. But in practice, you really can't, because unless there are institutions that represent the policy preferences of working-class people, those people are going to be ignored.

So in theory, yes, you could have had a bipartisan consensus that did not push elite-friendly globalization policies, that did not push elite-friendly immigration policies, that did not push elite-friendly environmental policies such as in France. But there's a reason why the elite-friendly policies always prevailed: the absence of actual checks and balances. So I simply don't believe in the possibility of a benevolent elite unless members of the working class have something beyond the vote. I simply don't believe in the possibility of a benevolent elite unless members of the working class have something beyond the vote. The vote is important, but casting a vote every couple of years for one of two candidates -- particularly when both have been chosen by donors and elite activists -- does not give you very much influence on the system. That's why, I think, you have to have free elections, but they have to be supplemented by policymaking bodies where you have additional checks and balances.

AS : You write that "even in so-called capitalist countries," partly as a result of this lack of checks and balances, property rights have been "diluted and redefined beyond recognition." How has this happened, and what are the implications for the struggle you're describing?

ML : This gets into why I don't like the term "middle class." For the majority of people in the United States, I use the term "working class." The classic word for that is "proletarian," which sounds kind of Marxist, but it comes from ancient Rome. It meant a propertyless wage worker, who has to earn a living by working for wages. Today we talk about the home-owning majority, the property-owning majority, and so on. But in practice, unless you have paid off your house mortgage loan completely, you're renting it from the bank. And the same is true of your car -- you're renting that until it's completely paid off, if it ever is. So the property-owning majority is kind of an illusion.

And I'm not criticizing the system. It's a successful system. But let's not trick ourselves into thinking that most Americans are therefore property-owners in a significant sense, or certainly that they're capitalists. The vast majority of Americans in retirement depend almost entirely on Social Security. Only the top half of the population has any kind of investments in 401(k)s or IRAs. And even that, if you look at the average 401K or IRA, is really a negligible amount of money. It doesn't last very long. So we really have a majority of people who could not live for more than a few weeks without a wage, without turning to the state for unemployment insurance. They would be destitute in old age without Social Security. And this is one of the reasons that there's a class division in attitudes toward entitlement policy. It seems insane, if you think about it, that after the economy crashed in 2008, the priority in Britain was austerity, cutting back government spending in the middle of a global depression. And in the United States, we had the bipartisan effort to cut the deficit, with President Obama offering the Republicans a cut to Social Security. That would not have happened in a truly democratic system in which ordinary people had the same clout as very well-to-do people.

AS : Implicit here is a critique of a certain kind of left-producerism, which folks like Elizabeth Warren and Matt Stoller have been pushing. That tradition imagines a world where all Americans are self-reliant property-owners, and hearkens back to the free labor movement of the 19 th century. You seem to be saying this is a pipe dream.

ML : My previous book, which I co-authored with the economist Robert D. Atkinson, was Big Is Beautiful: Debunking the Myth of Small Business . And we criticize this anachronistic, 19 th -century Jeffersonian idea of the small producer. It's just completely anachronistic. A slight majority of Americans today work for firms with 500 people or more. I love that statistic. It just shocks people.

Small businesses create most new jobs. They also destroy most new jobs because almost all small businesses fail. Small businesses create most new jobs. They also destroy most new jobs because almost all small businesses fail. So the only net job creation is by successful businesses, which if they are successful, become medium-size or large businesses. They level off at some point, of course. But that being the case, this Jeffersonian ideal is a hundred years out of date. It was clear in the early 20 th century that you could do four things to respond to the rise of large corporations. One is to break them up into little teeny-weeny firms again, mom and pop firms. That's the anti-trust agenda. That was considered anachronistic even in World War I -- Woodrow Wilson said, "this is absurd." So did Theodore Roosevelt. Roosevelt has this reputation as a trust buster, but if you actually read what he wrote, he thought consolidation was inevitable.

So we have these large corporations, and they should be regulated. But if you reject breaking them up into little pieces, what are the remaining three options? Well, there's nationalization. That's what the socialists wanted. Eugene Debs and the socialists thought trusts were great, because it's easier to nationalize a big firm than a small firm.

Then there's regulation, and then there's countervailing power, to use the term again from John Kenneth Galbraith. The labor movement under Samuel Gompers in the early 20 th century said, "well, we don't want socialism. We're not socialists. We want dynamic firms. We want to share their profits as workers. We don't want our own little tiny mom and pop firms. We like working for steel companies and car companies, as long as we're paid decently. We don't want the government to regulate our wages and benefits because we think that the rich lobbyists will always have more clout in Congress than representatives of working people."

So their solution, which I argue for, was countervailing power. You pool the labor power of workers, but then you negotiate with the big firms.

Now there's technically a fifth option, which is even more absurd than the anti-trust option. That's the libertarian one, where you just allow oligopolies and monopolies to grow, and they grow simply because they're dynamic and efficient. But if they abuse their power you just turn a blind eye to it. And you have to be an ideological libertarian to believe that a janitor, an individual janitor, has bargaining power in a company with 500 people. That's just pure nonsense and it's been recognized as such. Even J.S. Mill, who is cited as a classical liberal thinker, was for unions, because he saw that there was no way one individual could realistically negotiate a contract of employment with a large firm.

AS : You claim that immigration has made this kind of negotiation more difficult by creating a split labor market that ends up hurting low-wage workers. Yet several studies have suggested that it was cultural anxiety, not economic distress, that best predicted support for Trump. Would it be fair to say that immigration is primarily a cultural battleground in this new class war? Or do you think the materialist story is underrated?

ML : That's a misleading question. Most of the social science on Trump and Brexit is worthless because political scientists look for a single factor. Was it deindustrialization, was it racial views, was it age or whatever? And since you're dealing with a society that's quite stratified by class and divided by race, people have multiple characteristics that you can't catch if you're doing a regression analysis with one polling question. So I dismiss a lot of that stuff.

What I do in the book is build on Edna Bonacich's idea of the split labor market . That's when you have two populations competing for the same job. Sometimes they're of different ethnicities, they can be from different regions of the country or from different classes, but each has distinct, identifiable characteristics. Employers prefer the population that is willing to work for lower wages, whatever its defining characteristic is. For example, in the 19 th century industrial capitalists in the North brought in not just African-Americans, but also poor whites from the South to undercut unionization by mostly European immigrants in Northern industrial cities -- often Irish-Americans, German-, Polish-, Italian-Americans. That's a split labor market. Another example is employers bringing Chinese indentured servants to California to undercut unionization attempts by white labor activists. When that happens, there's inevitably racial resentment as well as economic resentment. The Irish-American labor organizers in San Francisco will denounce the Chinese for their cultural characteristics, and, at the same time, they'll denounce the capitalists for bringing in the Chinese to undercut their wages.

So you have to think about it as a three-way conflict among employers and two different groups of workers. It's not simply a racist, anti-racist paradigm. On the other hand, it's not pure economics, because there's often ethnic resentment between these different groups.

AS : Immigration is part of a larger story you tell about global labor arbitrage. Can you expand on that?

ML : Arbitrage is making a profit by exploiting jurisdictional differences in the value of the same good -- in this case, labor. It has nothing to do with productivity growth, and this is something that is confused in talks about globalization. If you shut down a factory in the Midwest and open up a new factory employing cheaper labor in South China or Mexico, using exactly the same technology, the profit of your firm goes up because the wage share of the profit has gone down. You're no more productive than you were, and you don't produce any more output because productivity is output-per-worker. The Chinese workers or the Mexican workers are producing cars and iPhones at the same rate as the American workers -- they're just paid much less. So that's labor arbitrage.

You also get labor arbitrage with immigration. When employers bring in a group from abroad to work the same jobs that natives or naturalized immigrants have been doing, but for lower wages, the new workers are not more productive, or more skilled, or more efficient. They're just cheaper.

AS : You hold up the post-World War II settlement as a model of democratic pluralism -- not just in economics but also culture. That settlement arguably rested on a shared moral consensus -- in particular a shared Christian consensus -- that's since broken down. The working class has become more diverse, not just ethnically but religiously, philosophically, morally. How do we have cultural power-sharing agreements when there's no shared culture, even among the working class?

ML : Well, I disagree with that characterization of the postwar period. Up until then you had a mainline Protestant establishment in the United States that was very anti-Catholic and anti-Jewish. And so Jewish kids and Catholic kids had to recite Protestant prayers in schools and sing Protestant hymns. Americanization was stripping them of being Jewish and Catholic. And evangelical Protestants suffered as well because these were mainline Protestants who didn't like evangelical Protestants.

But after World War II, the United States created what the sociologist Will Herberg called "the triple establishment." He wrote a book called Protestant -- Catholic -- Jew . And I'm old enough to remember that at every high school commencement, you had a priest, a minister, and a rabbi. So it was pluralistic. Now the term "Judeo-Christian" was invented around that time, to pretend these religions are all part of the same thing, which their theologians will dispute. I'm not saying we should return to that and ignore secular people, particularly with secularization increasing in the U.S. as in Europe.

But I think we've moved back toward a secularized Protestant mainline establishment. And if you look at a lot of the "wokeness" we see today, it's kind of a secularized version of New England puritanism I think we've moved back toward a secularized Protestant mainline establishment. And if you look at a lot of the "wokeness" we see today, it's kind of a secularized version of New England puritanism , at least in the United States. They go after exactly the same people that the old Northeastern mainline did: Southern evangelicals, Catholics, and traditional, non-liberal Jews. Muslims as well, although they treat Muslim as a racial category to be favored rather than a religious conservative category, although most Muslims are religiously conservative.

So I argue that we don't want a French-style anticlerical state, which wants to ban all displays of religion and be aggressively secular. That's not the American tradition. It's not the Anglo-American tradition. You also don't want the elite's religion -- which in the old days was mainline Protestantism, nowadays you'd call it mainline secularism -- to simply dominate the media and education. So I think we have to go back to some kind of institutionalized representation. Maybe it will be the priest, the minister, the rabbi, the druid, and the atheist. But I think that's a much healthier approach in a society where you have deep permanent value pluralism , as the philosopher John Gray has argued. You have to have what he calls a modus vivendi , an agreement to live and let live and co-exist.

AS : In your book, you note that there used to be religious and cultural bodies that were informally charged with oversight of education in the media. Organizations to which films were submitted for approval.

ML : Yeah, the Legion of Decency, which was originally a Catholic organization. It got to the point where Hollywood would just submit the films to them. There's this wonderful movie by the Coen brothers, Hail, Caesar , about making a biblical epic in the 1950s. There's a great scene where they have a Catholic priest, a Protestant minister, an Orthodox Christian priest, and a rabbi, and the poor studio guys are trying to make sure their film doesn't offend anybody.

Now, if you're a free speech zealot of the romantic libertarian bent, then the more shocking to public sensibilities, the better. And I don't want to go back to the old days where they were censoring Catcher in the Rye in the libraries. But on the other hand, come on. If you have a society that is half wiccans and half Nordic Asatru Thor worshippers, what is the goal of your policy in education and so on? Is it to constantly insult and humiliate the two groups that are the biggest groups in your society?

And what about parents? If you have compulsory public education, then the views of the parents ought to be respected by educators, right? Now again, this is not anticlerical France where the public school is a way to de-program Catholic school children and turn them into French Jacobin Republican citizens. I'm very supportive of mandatory viewpoint diversity in K-12 and higher education, and also in the media because let's face it, the mass media are a de facto public utility. It's how people communicate, it's what shapes perceptions. And to say that it's a purely private thing, so if you don't like it, go found your own radio network or your own TV network or your own social media platform . . . I don't think that's realistic.

AS : You note that in the past, Catholics played a role out of proportion to their numbers when it came to policing the culture. What sort of minority group, if any, do you think would fill that role today? Is there a particular subgroup that's well-positioned to revive these religious or cultural bodies?

ML : There is a kind of a revival of Catholic social thought on the right wing of the Republican Party, with people like Marco Rubio saying good things about unions. You see flickers there of this older Catholic influence, both in working-class economic areas but also in the culture. Like Protestants, Catholics are declining as a percentage of the population. Southern evangelicals, because of their dispensationalist ideology -- thinking the end of the world is near -- did not for obvious reasons put a whole lot of effort into thinking about the details of public policy.

We'll see what happens with American Muslims. What you saw with Catholic immigrants and Jewish immigrants was that even as they became less ethnic diasporas, they remained religious believers. There were new Jewish-American and Catholic-American establishments. I think we may see that with both Sunni and Shi'a Muslims. And to the extent that they don't accept the idea that we're just going to go along with whatever the Ivy League schools say, to the extent they reject the woke secular liberal attitude, they may play a role.

AS : You also have a very interesting passage where you say that terms like transphobia, homophobia, and Islamophobia medicalize politics, and treat different viewpoints as evidence of psychological disorder. Why has this become one of the go-to methods for invalidating dissent in the United States?

ML : Well, it has very deep roots, nearly a century old. If you go back to the 1920s and 30s, many of the intellectuals in the Western world were just completely entranced with Freudianism, and with other kinds of modern psychology. They thought that this was a science and it explained human behavior. And so the whole project of redefining morality in terms of psychology and therapy goes back to Freudianism, and then you get these increasingly dumbed down versions of it where one moral dispute after another -- over gay rights, over trans rights, over immigration -- gets medicalized so that instead of this being a dispute based on thousand-year-old religious texts, the people who hold a certain view are simply emotionally disturbed. And the cure for that is therapy.

You see this with diversity training. The premise is that if you don't agree with whatever the accepted positions are, then you need to be reprogrammed. To become a productive, normal person, you need therapy. And I think this is just very sinister and totalitarian. Obviously there are emotionally disturbed people who hate homosexuals, and there are deranged individuals with a completely insane hatred of people of another race. But as I say in the book, an Orthodox Jewish rabbi who disapproves of homosexuality, but also of abortion and divorce and adultery, is just following the teachings of Judaism, right? The rabbi is a perfectly normal, well-adjusted person. That's just the theology. If you want to fight the theology, denounce the theology.

But when you have the elites in charge of education and the media essentially adopting as their working hypothesis that anyone who disagrees with them needs therapy -- this is very sinister.

AS : It seems like this medicalization of politics has coincided with the rise of outlets like Vox, which you criticize more than once in The New Class War . Is that just an accident, or have both trends been driven by the same technocratic impulse?

ML : Yes, Vox very much represents what I call technocratic progressivism -- the idea that there is one "correct" answer which is also the moral answer. And so if anyone disagrees with the Vox policy, either they're ignorant or emotionally disturbed. It's very patronizing.

Having said that, the right has its own version of this, where anyone who disagrees with the right's policies is a traitor or an instrument of Satan or morally evil or stupid. So you find it on both sides.

But the medicalization tends to be associated with the overclass center-left, not the radical left. The Marxists don't do this because they believe in class conflict. I think their theory of class and class conflict is wrong, but they're actually closer to reality than the technocratic progressives who think that if everyone were sane and smart, there would never be any conflicts at all.

AS : You've talked about technocratic progressives, and alluded to what might be called technocratic libertarians. Is there such a thing as technocratic populism, which genuinely responds to populist complaints through market-based, technical solutions? Or is technocratic populism a contradiction in terms?

ML : I think it's a contradiction in terms, because if you believe as I do that the root of populism is a power deficit, then it's not a matter of getting the right policies. You actually have to redistribute power, and redistributing power to working class people means they have the power to be wrong and support dumb things. And their representatives have the power to make bad decisions.

So I don't think you can come up with a kinder and gentler version of technocratic progressivism where you just do better polling or you're just more benevolent and more sensitive to working-class people. You have to talk to them. I spent two decades in the NGO world. Apart from receptionists and janitors, you never encounter working-class people. I spent two decades in the NGO world. Apart from receptionists and janitors, you never encounter working-class people. The idea that you would actually go out there and ask them what their problems are, that almost never happens.

To be clear, there are some good things that come out of the technocratic approach. You don't expect working-class people to tell you statistically what the best health insurance option is. I'm not talking about that. I'm talking about basic preferences. The politicians do go out and supposedly hear from people at the diner when they're trying to get elected. But the experts in a think tank or university who are coming up with the plans that the politicians then sell to the people at the diner -- those experts don't have much contact with the working class.

Fifty years ago in this country it worked differently. The parties were federations of state and local parties, so word could go forth from Washington to persuade people that yes, this is the way to do it. And often that worked because the people involved in the local Democratic or Republican machine trusted the county precinct chairman. But the people in DC also heard from the grassroots. County people would talk to the state people, state people would send the message that things are going on out here. Now that the parties are just shells bought by billionaires, you don't get that.

As for unions -- they did bad things as well as good things, all human organizations have trade-offs -- but it meant that there was some kind of mechanism for working-class revolts to get somebody's ear up above. And in the absence of unions you get polls. "There's a poll that shows the working class believes X, there's a poll that shows the working class believes Y." In the old days you asked the shop steward or the foreman what the working class thought; you didn't have a telephone poll. That shows the extent to which all these connecting levels of organization have vanished, if the only way to find out what people are thinking is by calling them randomly and asking their opinion.

AS : It's ironic, isn't it, that some of the changes that hollowed out the parties were initially justified on the grounds that they weren't representative enough. Would it be fair to say that these kinds of populist reforms backfired and produced democratic deficits?

ML : Yeah, I think that's right. Now, sure, there were corrupt smoke-filled-room politicians. There were sleazy union officials who were embezzling from the union, there was sexual harassment among religious figures. These are human institutions.

But in ancient Rome, there were the tribunes, whose role was to represent the ordinary people against the senatorial class. And the moment it was reduced to one tribune -- who happened to be Caesar -- that was the end of that system. So you have to have lots of little petty tribunes, lots of petty power brokers, whom the metropolitan liberals never liked. The elite conservatives never liked them. Everybody looked down their noses at them, and at the church ladies, and at the corrupt local union boss, but they're all gone now. They're all extinct, just like the dinosaurs. So there's this huge void in between. Nothing's perfect, but I think we do have to rebuild this group of intermediate brokers so that you don't simply have a political system that consists of donors, advertising experts, and policy wonks who live in New York and Washington and maybe San Francisco.

AS : Two proposals that have been voiced by those policy wonks in recent years are universal basic income and trust-busting. In the book you reject both of these proposals. Why?

ML : Well, universal basic income has always been rejected by pro-labor people and by social democrats on the theory that if the working class has power through collective bargaining and other means to force employers to pay a living wage, then you don't need a universal basic income. If you work 40 hours a week -- and there's dignity to work -- then it's profoundly humiliating to say that a few rich CEOs are the only productive people in society, and everyone else is some kind of parasite. But to bribe them into silence, we'll just pay them off -- this is utterly abhorrent to the idea of the dignity of labor. It's abhorrent to the idea of a democratic Republic. Instead, you have an aristocracy passing out charity to people.

So that's the moral and political reason for rejecting it. The practical reason is, does anyone think that these billionaires who are hiding all of their income in the Cayman Islands are going to consent to be taxed to give everyone $12,000 a year? I don't believe that for a moment. Right now you can't even raise taxes on people making $100,000 or $200,000 a year. If the middle class is defined as anyone making less than $200,000 a year, we're not going to raise taxes on them. So where's this money coming from for the UBI?

And I've already touched briefly on the fact that trust-busting is anachronistic. What's particularly absurd is they're trying to argue that inequality has gone up, not for the real reason, which is that unions have been crushed and labor markets have been flooded by low-wage immigrants, but because of the monopsony power of big corporations. Okay. So let's say you break Facebook into five giant firms. Do we really believe that the janitor is going to have five times the bargaining power in these baby Facebooks? That's ridiculous. It's not going to happen.

AS : Five times zero is still zero.

ML : Yeah. But what you see with the Democrats is they're rapidly being taken over by formerly Republican libertarians and moderates. So as the Bush Republicans and a lot of libertarians, even the Koch brothers, are distancing themselves from the Republican Party, are moving away from the GOP because it's becoming more blue-collar -- well, when Bush country club Republicans decide, "Oh, I hate Donald Trump, I'm going to switch to the Democrats," they don't necessarily change their views about taxes or immigration or unions.

I'll give you an example I use in the book. The overwhelming majority of congressional districts in the 2016 elections that went for Clinton are among the wealthiest districts in the United States. And Trump got among the poorest districts in the United States, so the idea that the Republicans are the country club managerial capitalist party and the Democrats are the AFL-CIO steelworkers is like 20, 30 years out of date. It's all in flux.

AS : Many of the power-sharing proposals you favor work by creating veto points that let workers say no and force a compromise. Do you worry that this might make us less competitive in the international arena? China doesn't have many democratic constraints on the market, after all, because it's not a democracy. Is it possible to create veto points without sacrificing efficiency, and with it our competitive edge?

ML : Germany has had strong unions and co-determination, and its manufacturing industries are in many ways more advanced and successful than in the United States, where companies just want to crush unions and go for the cheapest possible labor. Japan is very paternalistic, but they have good labor relations as part of this kind of welfare capitalist system. So if you look at export competitiveness, the anti-labor countries like the U.S. and the UK don't do that well compared to the ones that have some kind of harmonization among their workforces and employers in manufacturing.

What dictatorships like China can do is mainly through credit, not cheap labor. They can dump products below cost on the rest of the world. And the classic dumping strategy, whether it's from a firm or a nation, is that you deliberately sell below cost long enough to drive your rivals out of business. And then at that point you have a monopoly in the market, which means you can jack up the price to recoup the losses you incurred during the dumping phase. So if you have government-owned enterprises, or nominally private enterprises that in practice have an unlimited credit line from the government or from banks the government pressures, there's no way any private enterprise can compete with a state-backed corporation.

So if you believe in industrial capitalism as I do -- I think it's the most dynamic system for increasing wealth and innovation in history -- then you have to block entry into your market by state-capitalists, otherwise they will wipe out your firms. This should not even be debated.

AS : In closing, I want to ask a couple big-picture questions. Patrick Deneen, the author of Why Liberalism Failed , recently tweeted that The New Class War is "THE essential book of the decade." Do you agree that liberalism has failed? And if not, why do you think that a lot of post-liberals have been raving about your book?

ML : Well I think there's agreement among people with very different views of history that what we call "liberalism" now -- which I would call libertarianism or neoliberalism -- has moved toward hyper-individualism in the culture and deregulation of the economy, and that this is a bad thing. It's bad for community. It's bad for the nation-state. It's bad in the long run for the capitalist economy because it undermines its foundations.

Where you get debate is on the question of when this started. To my mind, the neoliberal era started in the '70s and really got underway after the Cold War. For some of the critics of liberalism, like Deneen, it starts with the Protestant Reformation or with the Enlightenment. That's an interesting debate to have, but it's a philosophical debate. And I think that whatever your theory of the case, you can agree that the neoliberal moment is hopefully over, and that it's time to create a new system, which I for one hope will incorporate the good things about neoliberalism: emancipation of sexual minorities, a lot of the gains in civil rights and civil liberties. So you want the pendulum to swing back, but not necessarily all the way to where it was before neoliberalism. You just correct the excesses in the next stage of history.

AS : You don't seem to have much faith in either political party right now. Do you think the power-sharing you envision can plausibly arise without any help from established politicians, or are things going to get a lot worse before they get better?

ML : In the book, I argue that ruling elites generally share power only when they're forced to. And they are forced to either by fear of insurrection from below or by a fear of competition with other countries. I argue that ruling elites generally share power only when they're forced to. And they are forced to either by fear of insurrection from below or by a fear of competition with other countries. In most cases it's very difficult for weak, disorganized working-class people, or in the old days peasants, to overthrow the regime. So the elite doesn't have a whole lot to worry about from below. If you look at the creation of the mid-century class compromise I document in The New Class War , it was done largely during World War II in the United States and in Britain and in Germany. The left doesn't like to admit this. They want to pretend it was just a spontaneous upwelling from below. But in fact union membership shot up radically during World War II, because the Roosevelt Administration ordered firms to switch to war production, to make a deal with unions in the interest of defeating the Axis powers.

So at this point, I'm actually very pessimistic. I think that absent some kind of sustained international rivalry, where a section of the managerial elite comes to understand that constant labor and cultural warfare undermines us in international competition, so that they will have to broker a truce to save themselves -- I think absent that, you get a situation like a lot of South American countries. Brazil and Mexico, Central America, arguably they suffer because they never had a major war, and thus never had any incentive to extend power to ordinary people. So they're very oligarchical to this day.

AS : Do you think competition with China could potentially catalyze a class truce?

ML : It could, but I'm a realist in my foreign policy views. So I tend to see international politics as a series of either low-level or very intense competitions among different great powers. So if it's China now, it may be a rising India 50 years from now, and it may be somebody else in a hundred years. I think it just makes sense as a matter of prudence for a nation-state that's also a great power, like the United States, to have a kind of permanent low-level mobilization, which we didn't do after the Cold War.

I think future historians will be puzzled by the idea that the bipartisan establishment had that there would be no more great power conflicts -- that we could move much of our manufacturing and R&D to China, our most likely competitor, and have nothing to worry about. Sure, it lowers consumer prices. But if you think that today's trading partner may be tomorrow's military rival, it doesn't mean you're not going to engage in trade and immigration, but it does mean you're going to have some limits on those things for national security reasons. And again, for national security reasons you do not want class conflicts, racial rivalries, religious disputes to spiral out of control. It undermines the strength and harmony of your country in a dangerous world.

AS : Last question: Your theory of the case is very much a systemic one. It's a story about structures and institutions and systems, how they've changed and how they've changed for the worse. What, if anything, can individuals do to promote the kind of systemic change you want to see in the United States?

ML : Well, I think the first thing they can do is get off Twitter, and stop following national news obsessively, which is largely something the educated upper-middle class does. Working-class people are working, they don't have time, but if you're just re-tweeting angry memes about national politics, that's not politics. I don't know what it is. It's a kind of entertainment or something.

So start with your neighborhood, start with your city. It's not going to be enough -- obviously you have to have the top-down element too -- but real politics is getting the dangerous intersection fixed. It's taking part in a group. If the only thing you do is you vote and then retweet cartoons about the other party, you're not really engaged in politics, right?

So you have to be part of some kind of group. It can be a community group, it can be a religious group, it can be a party group. You've got local Democrats, local Republicans. But I think the best way to break the tendency toward increasing nationalization of everything starts with the individual. It starts locally. When I teach I'm kind of amused, if not shocked, by the tendency of young people to think that if there's any problem, Washington should fix it. If you need a bike path in your city, then Congress should allocate money for the bike path. Well, okay, but why don't you try raising money door-to-door for the bike path? And if that doesn't work, why not go to the city council? And if that doesn't work, there's the state legislature. We really are drifting toward this system where it's assumed that if you elect the right President, then all problems, state and Federal and local, social and economic, will be solved because the President has the right policies.

The Democratic primary has just seemed unreal to me for this very reason because now each candidate has his or her own party platform. They're basically one-person parties, and they're expected to have a platform for every single thing. Up until recently, the President was just the head of the party in Congress, and the party had different wings. There were the farmers and labor and African-Americans, there were consumer groups. The party platform reflected the relative power of those groups, and the President vowed to help carry out the party platform.

I think we're moving toward a nationalized plebiscitary presidential system, where the president is freely elected, but it's a kind of elective dictatorship: an all-powerful Caesarist or Bonapartist presidency will just solve all of our problems, and then if anything goes wrong in the country it's the President's fault, even though the President didn't have all that much power in reality. Real politics starts locally and consists of having groups of people working together on common projects beginning at home. Published on: January 29, 2020 Michael Lind is co-founder of New America and the author of The New Class War: Saving Democracy from the Managerial Elite . Aaron Sibarium is assistant editor at The American Interest .

[Feb 07, 2020] The democratic party must be thee only political party in all world history that actively suppresses people who want to vote for them.

Feb 07, 2020 | www.moonofalabama.org

Erelis , Feb 6 2020 19:43 utc | 61

The democratic party must be thee only political party in all world history that actively suppresses people who want to vote for them.

Looks like the democrats are set to lose the same way they did in 2016. Basically as Matt Bruenig wrote in his article "The Boring Story of the 2016 Election

Donald Trump did not win because of a surge of white support. Indeed he got less white support than Romney got in 2012. Nor did Trump win because he got a surge from other race+gender groups. The exit polls show him doing slightly better with black men, black women, and latino women than Romney did, but basically he just hovered around Romney's numbers with every race+gender group, doing slightly worse than Romney overall.

However, support for Hillary was way below Obama's 2012 levels, with defectors turning to a third party. Clinton did worse with every single race+gender combo except white women, where she improved Obama's outcome by a single point. Clinton did not lose all this support to Donald. She lost it into the abyss. Voters didn't like her but they weren't wooed by Trump .

The Third Wave neocons pointed out an interesting fact. Clinton won bigly CA, NY, and MA which gave her something like 7 million votes. However, Trump won the remaining 47 states by four million.

Willy2 , Feb 6 2020 23:19 utc | 92

- Caitlin Johnstone: It wasn't "incompetence", it was intentionally.

https://consortiumnews.com/2020/02/06/the-myth-of-incompetence-dnc-scandals-are-a-feature-not-a-bug

[Feb 07, 2020] Divide et Impera

Feb 07, 2020 | www.zerohedge.com

VodkaInKrakow , 1 hour ago link

Bezos held a party in DC recently at his place attended by top officials from the Trump Administration. Jared Kushner was there before. They hang out together.

How odd that Bezos is somehow portrayed as some anti-Trump owner of WaPo. Bezos serves his role in Beltway...

Divide et Impera.

Divide and Rule (the rabble).

[Feb 07, 2020] Centrist Dems - The Right Wing Democrats dominating the Democratic Party... prefer Trump to Sanders

Feb 07, 2020 | www.zerohedge.com

VodkaInKrakow , 1 hour ago link

As has always been said, Centrist Dems - The Right Wing Democrats dominating the Democratic Party... prefer Trump to Sanders.

It will always be that way. They figure they can stick out four more years of Trump just like they did with Bush and have their victory in 2024.

They are living in the past.

2020, with continued corruption by Centrist Dems? Will result in massive gains for Republicans and massive losses for Centrist Dems. The top party leadership of Centrist Dems are fine with that as long as their own seats are protected from Republican challenge. Deals will be made.

If you look at Trump term? Not much has really changed other than the rabble (Right, Center, and Left) being at each other's throats more than usual. That's they way the elites like it. Rabble like that, so easily divided?

DESERVE TO BE RULED.

monkman , 1 hour ago link

The system isn't broken. It's working exactly the way it's intended to work. It ain't a bug, it's a feature. And that feature will remain in operation until the entire sick system is torn down and replaced with something healthy.

* * *

Correct, the entire system and most likely that's a long time from now. Unfortunately.

[Feb 07, 2020] Unless They Change The Democrats Deserve To Lose

Notable quotes:
"... How can they change? The owners are the warmongering monopoly capitalist ruling class. Are you imagining that any decision can ever be made by the lowly peons, the rank and file? ..."
Feb 07, 2020 | www.moonofalabama.org

Unless They Change The Democrats Deserve To Lose Trisha , Feb 6 2020 16:12 utc | 6

The Democratic Party seems to intend to lose the 2020 elections.

The idiotic impeachment attempt against Trump ended just as we predicted at its beginning:

After two years of falsely accusing Trump of having colluded with Russia [the Democrats] now allege that he colludes with Ukraine. That will make it much more difficult for the Democrats to hide the dirty hands they had in creating Russiagate. Their currently preferred candidate Joe Biden will get damaged.
...
Trump should be impeached for his crimes against Syria, Venezuela and Yemen.

But the Democrats will surely not touch on those issues. They are committing themselves to political theater that will end without any result. Instead of attacking Trump's policies and proposing better legislation they will pollute the airwaves with noise about 'crimes' that do not exist.

There is no case for impeachment. Even if the House would vote for one the Senate would never act on it. No one wants to see a President Pence.

The Democrats are giving Trump the best campaign aid he could have wished for. Trump will again present himself as the victim of a witch hunt. He will again argue that he is the only one on the side of the people. That he alone stands with them against the bad politicians in Washington DC. Millions will believe him and support him on this. It will motivate them to vote for him.

The Senate acquitted Trump of all the nonsense the Democrats have thrown against him.


bigger

Biden lost in Iowa and his poll numbers elsewhere are not much better. His meddling in Ukrainian politics will continue to be investigated.

Iowa caucuses count was intentionally sabotaged, first through an appn created by incompetent programmers on the payroll of a Buttigieg related company , then by a manipulated manual count by the Iowa Democratic party:

Chris Schwartz @SchwartzForIowa - 22:01 UTC · Feb 5, 2020

The state party is now being forced to walk back their error of giving @BernieSanders delegates to @DevalPatrick who received zero votes in Black Hawk County. Press can dm me.

We have known for over 24 hours as verified by our county party that @BernieSanders won the #iacaucuses in Black Hawk County with 2,149 votes, 155 County Delegates. #NotMeUs #IowaCaucuses


bigger

The whole manipulation was intended to enable Buttigieg to claim that he led in Iowa even though it is clear that Bernie Sanders won the race. It worked:

29 U.S.C. § 157 @OrganizingPower - 4:13 UTC · Feb 6, 2020

Post Iowa, Buttigieg has gotten a 9pt bounce in Emerson's tracking poll of NH. A bounce based on a caucus he didn't win.

All this is clearly following a plan:

Lee Camp [Redacted] @LeeCamp - 16:58 UTC · Feb 5, 2020

If a progressive is about to win #IowaCaucuses:
- remove final polls
- use mysterious app created by former Clinton staffers
- Funnel results thru untested app
- Claim app fails
- Hold results
- Reveal only 62% to give false impression of who won
- Refuse to reveal final results

But the cost of such open manipulations is the loss of trust in the Democratic Party and in elections in general:

In sum: We are 24 hours into the 2020 campaign, and Democrats have already humiliated their party on national television, alienated their least reliable progressive supporters, demoralized their most earnest activists, and handed Trump's campaign a variety of potent lines of attack.

This so obvious that has to wonder if these outcomes are considered to be features and not bugs .

Buttigieg is by the way a terrible candidate. His work for McKinsey, the company that destroyed the middle class , smells of work for some intelligence agency . His hiring of a Goldman Sachs executive as national policy director makes it clear what his policies will be.

The other leading candidates are not much better. Sanders might have a progressive agenda in domestic policies, but his foreign policies are fully in line with his party. Matt Duss, Sanders' foreign policy advisor, is the son of a lifelong key front man for CIA proxy organizations. He spills out mainstream imperial blabber:

Matt Duss @mattduss - 2:38 UTC · Feb 5, 2020

The only thing that Trump's Venezuela regime change policy achieved is giving Russia an opportunity to screw with the US in our own hemisphere. That's what they were applauding.

Giving a standing ovation to Trump's SOTU remarks on Venezuela were of course the Democratic "resistance" and Nancy Pelosi . That was before she theatrically ripped up her copy of Trump's speech, the show act of a 5 year old and one which she had trained for . She should be fired.

Impeachment, the Iowa disaster and petty show acts will not win an election against Donald Trump. While they do not drive away core Democratic voters, they do make it difficult to get the additional votes that are needed to win. Many on the left and the right who dislike Trump will rather abstain or vote for a third party than for a party which is indistinguishable from the currently ruling one.

Meanwhile Trump hauls in record amounts in donations and, with 49%, achieved his best personal approval rate ever .

Either the Democrats change their whole course of action or they will lose in November to an extend that will be breathtaking. It would be well deserved.

Posted by b on February 6, 2020 at 15:57 UTC | Permalink The donor class owners of the "Democratic" party have every incentive to support Trump, who has cut their taxes, hugely inflated the value of their assets, and mis-directed attention away from substantial issues that might degrade either their assets or their power, by focusing on identity politics.


SharonM , Feb 6 2020 16:15 utc | 7

It's obvious to me that the two war parties function as one. The Democrats have been winning since Trump took office--they get their money and they get their wars. If Trump wins, the Democrats win as billionaires flood more money into the DNC. If Trump loses, the Republicans win for the same reasons.
Bruce , Feb 6 2020 16:36 utc | 10
The behavior of a five year old is an appropriate reference point for most of the people working in DC, albeit engaged parents expect more of their children. This vaudeville routine is giving satisfaction to Republicans, Trump supporters, and those who have been looking for a clearer opportunity to say "I told you so" to diehard Democratic believers (who will continue to refuse to listen).
For an American, even one who has always been somewhat cynical regarding cultural notions of democracy and the "American Way," the show has become patently and abusively vulgar and revulsive. It does not appear to be anywhere near "hitting bottom." There can be no recovery without emotional maturity, and the leaders in Washington exhibit nothing of the kind. The level of maturity and wisdom of the individuals involved is determinative of the political result, not the alleged quality of the politics they purport to sell. Right now we don't have that.
Piero Colombo , Feb 6 2020 17:07 utc | 19
"Unless They Change The Democrats Deserve To Lose"

Aren't there 2 levels of "change"?

1. How can they change? The owners are the warmongering monopoly capitalist ruling class. Are you imagining that any decision can ever be made by the lowly peons, the rank and file? If you thought anything like that, you should try to find one single instance, in all history, of this "party" ever having done anything at all out of line with the express policy of the owners of the country (the high level of people-friendly noise, intended for the voting peons, never translates into any action of that sort.)

2. If you mean change the electoral policy to win this election, how could they conceivably manage to change this late? Like a supertanker launched at full speed trying to make a sharp turn a few seconds before hitting the shore, you mean?

Anyway, in both cases forget what it "deserves", it should be destroyed and buried under, not only lose.

ak74 , Feb 6 2020 17:08 utc | 21
American democracy is Kabuki Theater and Professional Wrestling.

It is the ultimate Reality TV show for the sheeple to think that they have a political voice.

Remember what Frank Zappa said: "Politics is the Entertainment Division of the Military-Industrial Complex."

jared , Feb 6 2020 17:30 utc | 26
It would take extreme mental contortions to take U.S. "democracy" seriously at this point.
I would like to believe that it makes some difference who is elected, but increasingly doubtful.
How different would it really have been had Hillary been elected (much as it pains me to consider such a scenario)?
Trump was elected (aside from interference from AIPAC) partly because he was republican candidate and for some that's all it takes but aside from that because;
- end pointless wars
- improve healthcare
- control immigration
- jobs for coal miners
- somehow address corruption and non-performance of government
- improve US competitiveness, bring back jobs, promote business, improve economy
He claims having improved the economy but more likely is done juice from the FED.
So really, what grade does he deserve?
And yet people are rallying to his side.
Personally I think that the entrenched interests have moulded Trump to meet their requirements and now it is inconvenient to have to start work on a new president, unless it would be one of their approved choices.
I voted for Trump because of Hillary.
Now I would not vote for Trump given a decent choice. Fortunately there is an excellent alternative.
Noirette , Feb 6 2020 17:37 utc | 29
All who count have known for a long time that Trump will have a second term. Baked in. (1)

The Dems agitate and raucously screech and try to impeach to distract or whatever to show da base that they hate Trump and hope to slaughter! him! a rapist! mysoginist! racist! liar ! He is horrors! in touch with the malignant criminal authoritarian ex-KGB Putin! Russia Russia Russia - and remember Stormy Daniels! ( :) ! )

The top corp. Dems prefer to lose to Trump, I have said this for years, as have many others. In rivalry of the Mafia type, it is often better to submit to have a share of the pie. Keep the plebs on board with BS etc. Victim status, underdog pretense, becomes ever more popular.

1. Trump might fall ill / dead / take Melania's advice and wishes into account, or just quit.

Jackrabbit , Feb 6 2020 17:47 utc | 31
People still talk like democracy really exists in USA.

They channel their anger toward Party and personality.

If only the democrats would ... If only Sanders would ... If only people would see that ...

A few understand the way things really are, but most are still hoping that somehow that the bed-time stories and entertaining kayfabe are a sort of democracy that they can live with.

But the is just normalcy bias. A Kool-Aid hang-over. This is not democracy. It is a soft tyranny encouraged by Empire stooges, lackeys, and enabled by ignorance.

The lies are as pervasive as they are subtle: half-truths; misdirection; omitting facts like candidate/party affiliations with the Zionist/Empire Death Cult.

The REAL divide among people in the West is who benefits from an EMPIRE/ZIONIST FIRST orientation that has polluted our politics and our culture and the rest of us.

Wake up. War is on the horizon. And Central Banks can't print money forever.

/rage, rage against the dying of the light

!!

par4 , Feb 6 2020 17:52 utc | 34
After watching Pelosi it reminded me that during the Geo. W. Bush era the Democrats were always claiming to be the adults in the room. It's odd that Mayo Pete's 'husband' is never seen or heard from. I wonder why? Biden's toast and Epstein didn't kill himself. AND Seth Rich leaked Hillary's emails to Wikileaks.
Qparticle , Feb 6 2020 18:11 utc | 41
-- --
The Clinton-Obama administration had scores of corrupt officials and associates (the Podestas, for instance). It was necessary to create a firewall once Trump won the nomination. As so, they attacked his campaign manager, his national security adviser, his family, himself, using all the means of FISA, wire tapping done by NSA and CIA and Mi6 and probably Mossad.

Red Ryder | Feb 6 2020 16:56 utc | 14
-- --

Trump is an installment of The Mossad via blackmail and media manipulation, check "Black Cube Intelligence", a Mossad front operating from City of London. It would make sense the establishment in the US would eavesdrop on him. Mossad on the other hand would wiretap the wiretapers and give feedback on Trump. The Podesta you mentioned once threatened the factions with "disclosure" possibly to keep the runaway black projects crazies in check not that I wish to play advocate of these people.

-- --
After they lose again in November, they will unleash their street thugs, Antifa, to terrorize the winners. Meanwhile for the purists of the Liberal Cult there will be many real suicides. So, bloodshed and death will become reality.

Red Ryder | Feb 6 2020 16:56 utc | 14
-- --

Yes, what we need is just a nazi party in the US to keep communism in check, right? We are half way there with Trump already aren't we? "Black Sun" technologies (which a part off I described above) already there, leaking to anyone interested enough that would aid in the great outsourcing for the Yinon project, so why not? "Go Trump 2020"! (sarcasm)

DannyC , Feb 6 2020 18:12 utc | 42
For whatever reason the only thing the Dems seem to find more terrible than a loss to Trump is a win with Bernie. I'm no fan of Bernie but it's clear they're out to sabotage the one guy that would actually beat Trump in an election
VeraK , Feb 6 2020 18:16 utc | 43
While I have no illusions that a Sanders administration will have good foreign policy objectives, is there not something to be said for shifting money away from the military-industrial complex in the US? In general Sanders gives me the impression that he wants to reduce US intervention in foreign affairs in favor of spending more money on domestic issues. Even a slight reduction in pressure is helpful for giving other countries the ability to expand their spheres of influence and becoming more legitimate powers in opposition to the US and EU. Based on this I still see voting for Sanders as helpful even if he won't bring about any meaningful change in the US's foreign policy.
Pft , Feb 6 2020 19:10 utc | 56
it's not an actual Stalin quote, but often used as such
he did say something in the same vein, though.
it IS absolutely spot on here:

"It's not who vote that counts, it's who counts the votes"

congratulations, DNC, you're on a par with Joseph Stalin; the most ruthless chairman the Sovyets have ever had.
so here is your real Russia Gate.
oh, come and smell the Irony. In fake wrestling the producers determine the winner in advance and the wrestlers ate given their script to follow. The Dems have no intention to win this, look at the clowns they have running the show not to mention the flawed candidates . The script calls for the king of fake wrestling, Trump himself, to win yet again. Only a concerted effort by the Dems and Deep State media, along with some tech help from Bibis crew can engineer this result, but they are all on board. Dems willing to wait for 2024 when the producers will write them in for a big Win over somebody not named Trump. The world will be ready for a Green change by then, and Soros/Gates boys will have their chance to step up to the plate again.

Enjoy the show if you wish, I'm changing the channel.

[Feb 07, 2020] The favored candidate of the DNC is clearly Trump

Trump is Hillary2020 ;-)
Feb 07, 2020 | www.moonofalabama.org

Bubbles , Feb 6 2020 20:57 utc | 74

Yes pft, the favored candidate of the DNC is clearly Trump.

Posted by: Blue Dotterel | Feb 6 2020 19:25 utc | 58


Only if the ungrateful commoners who identify as Democrats or moderates can't be brought to heel and give their full throated support for the DNC's favoured Cookie Cutter candidate who might as well be one of those dolls with a string and a recording you hear when you pull the string.

Then yes, they would prefer 'fore moar years!!' of the Ugliest American ever to be installed as President of the United States.

One of things I respect about Tulsi Gabbard is she ain't no Doll with a string attached. When she made the comment about cleaning out the rot in the Democratic Party, she left no doubt her intent and goals. And to take on hillary, the Red Queen to boot, why that was simply delicious.

Alas, the View, the DNC, it's web of evil rich and the media will never forgive her for Soldiering for her Country.

[Feb 07, 2020] Failed Coup of a Failing Establishment by Pat Buchanan

Feb 04, 2020 | www.unz.com

It has been a bad few days for the establishment, really bad.

In a 51-49 vote, the Senate refused to call witnesses in the impeachment trial of Donald Trump and agreed to end the trial Wednesday, with a near-certain majority vote to acquit the president of all charges.

As weekend polls show socialist Bernie Sanders surging into the lead for the nomination in the states of Iowa, New Hampshire and California, the sense of panic among Democratic Party elites is palpable.

Former Secretary of State and Joe Biden surrogate John Kerry was overheard Sunday at a Des Moines hotel talking of the "possibility of Bernie Sanders taking down the Democratic Party -- down whole."

Tuesday, Trump takes his nationally televised victory lap in the U.S. Capitol with his State of the Union address, as triumphant Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and a humiliated Speaker Nancy Pelosi sit silently side-by-side behind him.

Democrats may declare the Trump impeachment a victory for righteousness, but the anger and outrage, the moans and groans now coming off the editorial and op-ed pages and cable TV suggest the media know otherwise.

History, we are told, will vindicate what Pelosi and the Democrats did and stain forever the Republican Party for voting to acquit.

Perhaps, but only if some future Howard Zinn is writing the history.

Reality: The impeachment of Trump was an attempted -- and failed -- coup that not a single Republican supported, only Democrats in the House and their Senate caucus. The impeachment of Trump was an exercise in pure partisanship and itself an abuse of power.

What was the heart of the Democrats' case to remove Trump?

Trump failed to invite Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy to the White House, and held up military aid to Kyiv for several months, to get Zelenskiy to hold a press conference to announce that Kyiv was looking into how Hunter Biden got on the board of a corrupt energy company at a retainer of $83,000 a month while his father was the chief international monitor of corruption in Ukraine.

The specific indictment: Trump's suspension of military aid imperiled "our national security" by denying arms to an "ally" who was fighting the Russians over there, so we don't have to fight them over here.

And what was the outcome of it all?

Zelenskiy got his meeting with the president. He got the military aid in September. He did not hold the press conference requested. He did not announce an investigation of the Bidens. No harm, no foul.

How did President Obama handle Ukraine?

After Vladimir Putin annexed Crimea and intervened to protect pro-Russian secessionists in the Donbass, Obama's White House restricted U.S. lethal military aid to Kyiv and provided blankets and meals ready to eat.

What punishment did House and Senate Democrats and anti-Trump media demand for the pause in sending weapons for Ukraine?

Capital punishment, a political death penalty.

Democrats demanded that a Republican Senate overturn the election of 2016, make Trump the first president ever impeached and removed, and then ensure that the American people could never vote for him again.

Nancy Pelosi's House and the Democratic minority in the Senate were demanding that a Republican Senate do their dirty work and keep Trump off the ballot in 2020, lest he win a second term.

For four years, elements of the liberal establishment -- in the media, "deep state" and major institutions -- have sought to destroy Trump. First, they aimed to smear him and prevent his election, and then to overturn it as having been orchestrated by the Kremlin, and then to impeach and remove him, and then to block him from running again.

The damage they have inflicted upon our country's institutions is serious.

U.S. intelligence agencies are being investigated by U.S. Attorney John Durham for their role in instigating an investigation of a U.S. presidential campaign. The FBI has been discredited by exposure of a conspiracy of top-level agents to spy on Trump's campaign.

The media, by endlessly echoing unproven claims that Trump was a stooge of the Kremlin, discredited themselves to a degree unknown since the "Yellow Press" prostituted itself to get us into war with Spain. Media claims to be unbiased pursuers of truth have suffered, not only from Trump's attacks, but from their own biased and bigoted coverage and commentary.


anonymous [245] Disclaimer , says: Show Comment February 3, 2020 at 11:18 pm GMT

Always at least a dribble of Beltway, uniparty propaganda that Russia is "our" enemy ruled by a dictator, etc: "After Vladimir Putin annexed Crimea .." Can this columnist not acknowledge that the people of Crimea voted to secede from Ukraine after Uncle Sam helped stage a coup and handpicked its new figurehead? He is still on record espousing the claim that Russia "hacked" the 2016 U.S. election.

Anyone who believes that people above the level of sacrificial flunky "being investigated by U.S. Attorney John Durham for their role in instigating an investigation of a U.S. presidential campaign" will be charged with a felony is dreaming.

Mr. Buchanan's jobs as Stagehand Right in the Washington puppet show are to whitewash the imperialism and to lead enough Red sheep to vote in the next Most Important Election Ever.

TG , says: Show Comment February 3, 2020 at 11:24 pm GMT
Impeachment was a circus, nothing more.

Ooh, lookie lookie, Trump is being impeached! Cheer the noble Democrats striking a blow for freedom and virtue! Or boo the corrupt Democrats for putting on this farce! Take your pick.

But whatever you do, don't pay any attention to the ongoing third-world invasion on our southern border, or the trillions we are wasting on pointless winless foreign wars, or the tens of trillions (that's not a mis-print) we are wasting bailing out and subsidizing Wall Street and financial engineering, don't pay any attention to the fact that most of our drugs are now made in Communist China with very little quality control, and yet prices for these same drugs in the US are skyrocketing. And don't get me started on the growing industry of "Surprise Medical Billing." I could go on but you get the idea.

Yes, impeachment was a bad joke. It's not a bug, it's a feature.

Buck Ransom , says: Show Comment February 3, 2020 at 11:45 pm GMT
Mr. Buchanan continues in his refusal to mention that the Maidan Revolution in the Ukraine was a color revolution backed by the Obama-era State Department, the CIA and various Soros-affiliated NGOs. But he dutifully invokes the Russian annexation of Crimea while never mentioning the fact that it followed a referendum on the issue which was supported by the vast majority in Crimea.
Rurik , says: Show Comment February 3, 2020 at 11:46 pm GMT

Almost all now concede we have become an us vs. them nation.

hmm..

Corvinus , says: Show Comment February 3, 2020 at 11:59 pm GMT
"Reality: The impeachment of Trump was an attempted -- and failed -- coup that not a single Republican supported, only Democrats in the House and their Senate caucus. The impeachment of Trump was an exercise in pure partisanship and itself an abuse of power."

Reality–Mr. Buchanan is still smarting from his boss Nixon getting busted, and will stoop to new lows to exonerate him and others on the same trajectory. Of course, impeachment is not a coup, and the Democrats made a strong case. It is other than surprising in an election year where Trump threatened to burn any Republican Senator to the ground that they are "united".

It is laughable that there was this "perfect call", yet he stonewalled any and all efforts to enable witnesses to come forward. Why not have the Bidens, Guiliani, Parnas, Mulvaney, and everyone associated to this scandal be allowed to speak their minds in the Senate? What is the GOP so afraid of?

Several questions remain:

Why did Trump task Giuliani, in a personal capacity, to press Ukraine on the Bidens rather than Trump asking the Department of Justice to investigate? Why were several key administration officials "in the dark" about the activities of Giuliani?

Why did one Trump lawyer say to Senators that the House never authorized a resolution (when it did) for subpoenas of Trump officials, when that same lawyer stated in 2019 that resolution was unnecessary since they would testify on their own behalf?

White House Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney admitted to a quid pro quo and then walked it back. Could he testify as to explain why? Why not allow other Trump officials to testify as witnesses to exonerate Trump?

Trump stated he is concerned about adult children benefiting from their father's name? Why did he give his children a place in his administration?

Trump's lawyers argued that in order to convict him, the Senate must find him guilty "beyond a reasonable doubt". Except that has never been the standard ever used in past impeachment trial. Why would they make this claim?

Anonymous [124] Disclaimer , says: Show Comment February 4, 2020 at 12:48 am GMT
Time for a senate investigation into Joe Biden's blatant corruption and abuse of power in the Burisma matter. There has already been a shitload of evidence gathered by Ukraine prosecutors and a French journalist and it all points to Joe actually being guilty of everything the Dems charged Trump with. Subpoena all of it plus sworn testimony from Joe and Hunter themselves (though they will both have to take the Fifth to avoid self-incrimination).
Curmudgeon , says: Show Comment February 4, 2020 at 1:02 am GMT
@Truth3 He can't get that far, he's still stuck on Russia "annexing" Crimea.
gsjackson , says: Show Comment February 4, 2020 at 1:07 am GMT
@Truth3 You'd think at 82 and presumably secure financially Pat would let 'er rip once in a while, but he had bigger stones three decades ago when he had a mainstream career in middle age to protect. I met him a couple of times in the '80s, and the pugnacious brawler image he liked to project -- back then, at least -- is not what comes across in person. He was a little reserved and diffident (maybe it was the company). Nothing wrong with that, of course, but you didn't sense a zest for engaging and confronting.
R.G. Camara , says: Show Comment February 4, 2020 at 1:09 am GMT
All the coup members should be arrested and tried for treason. Including those working at the corporate news networks who cheered this on.

Also, the Democratic party will cease to be a viable national party by 2030. (ok, it really should be 2032, because that will be the first presidential election they will not be viable, but I'll stick with 2030).

Why? Simple: a political party based on a coalition solely devoted to hating the other side won't work. Political parties, unlike wartime militaries, need a constructive agenda to unite behind. Meaning the party must want to do certain things when in power that everyone in the party agrees on, not merely to trample on their political opponents

Ironically, that's why Bernie's going so well: he's got a constructive agenda. Yes, socialism is evil, but all the other candidates merely say the same flavor of "defeating Trump is paramount." Socialism is at least something to implement beyond recriminations against whitey.

R.G. Camara , says: Show Comment February 4, 2020 at 1:09 am GMT
@Corvinus lmao. Our personal paid media-matters troll, Corvinus, is desperately trying to spin his conspiracy theory hoax again. Go, Corvinus, go, earn Mr. Soros's paycheck you maginificent lying bastard!
Ozymandias , says: Show Comment February 4, 2020 at 2:38 am GMT
@Anonymous "Subpoena all of it plus sworn testimony from Joe and Hunter themselves (though they will both have to take the Fifth to avoid self-incrimination)."

Then charge them with Obstruction Of Congress. Isn't that what you're supposed to do when someone exercises their rights?

Truth3 , says: Show Comment February 4, 2020 at 3:04 am GMT
@gsjackson Remember this is the guy that was attacked on stage by Jewish thug-wannabees the day he announced his Presidential Campaign and he bounced them off the stage solo.

He knows the Elephant with the hooked nose well enough is he still afraid of Mossad?

Priss Factor , says: Website Show Comment February 4, 2020 at 3:15 am GMT
@Truth3 Yup. Jew Coup through and through.

It makes me wonder. Even though Jews are over-represented in elite institutions, the great majority of Deep State is still made up of goyim. Then, why are they all so servile to Jewish agendas and Jewish wishes? Do goyim lack a mind of their own? If Jews say 'gay marriage', deep state goyim run to fetch the stick. When Jews 'more Wars for Israel', deep state goyim roll over. If Jews say, 'bail out Wall Street', deep state goyim just go along. If Jews say, "fuc* the first and second amendments", deep state goyim nod along. Look at cuck goyim in Virginia grabbing guns to serve their Jewish masters. If Jews say 'let's get Trump', deep state goyim bark and bite.

It could be that deep state goyim just happen to share the same ideas and values as the Jews. Or it could be their minds were molded by Jewish-run media and academia. Or they're just afraid of Jewish power that, via media, blackmail, and bought off politicians, can destroy anyone. Indeed, the sheer chutzpah of all those Jews coming out of the woodwork to unseat an elected president.
Jewish attitude is "Powers Is Ours. All you goyim are just guests at the table."

Jews are captains of the ship. Deep State goyim must man the engines with no sense of direction or destiny of their own.

Priss Factor , says: Website Show Comment February 4, 2020 at 3:21 am GMT
@Corvinus Trump is scump, and yes, he was sniffing at Hunter for political reasons. But there is no smoking gun that he violated any law. It's all speculation.

Still, Trump did something that was unethical even though he was probing into corruption. He did it for political reasons. After all, if Trump is concerned about corruption, he should begin with US defense budgets.

But Dems are also full of shit. They began with the agenda, "Let's impeach Trump" and grasped for ANYTHING to carry it out. It didn't begin with the possible violation on Trump's part but with the desire to get Trump somehow someway. Impeach Trump was the apriori agenda from the day he was elected.

Besides, if Trump should really be removed, it's for the murder of hero Soleimani. And Obama should have been impeached for his war crimes. But nope. It's some fantasy about Russia Collusion or some triviality about Hunter, another scumbag. Jewish Power pushes American Politicians to do evil things around the world and expresses OUTRAGE only when Jews don't get what they want.

You pretend to be a proggy, but you're just Hasbara. It's so obvious. Give it up.

nsa , says: Show Comment February 4, 2020 at 6:11 am GMT
@Priss Factor Henry Ford was the last WASP to resist jew banking and finance. 100 years ago, Ole Henry bought a newspaper dedicated to attacking the jew, and he disseminated the Elders of Zio through all his dealerships. He also tried to prevent the jew's favorite project at the time ..WW1. The jew stomped Ole Henry double plus good and got their war. The WASP establishment took careful note of Ford's humiliation, and took in the jew as a junior partner in running and looting the country. 100 years later, the jew is running government, media, and finance ..with the WASP as a very junior partner, mostly playing the role of useful idiot providing the cannon fodder and taxes for jew wars.
John Johnson , says: Show Comment February 4, 2020 at 7:30 am GMT
@Truth3 You and other "blame da jooz" lurkers at Unz clearly haven't spent much time around non-Jewish White leftists as Pat obviously has. There is no great conspiracy he is trying to avoid.

I went to a college where every single professor was doing their best to indoctrinate the students and 90% of them were Anglo or Nordic.

For every Jewish leftist lawyer you can point at in DC there are a thousand non-Jewish White lawyers behind the scenes.

Liberalism is a sickness that would still exist even if you got rid of the Jews. Have a look at Deutschland if you doubt this.

Here is the kicker: The non-Jewish leftists know they are lying. It isn't some brainwash job by the Jewz. Liberal professors and media commentators know they are lying. They think it is all justified. In their minds we are the problem and lies or gulags are just fine if the end is the same.

The worst leftist of all time was not Jewish and in fact sent a lot of Jews packing. His name was Stalin, maybe you have heard of him.

El Dato , says: Show Comment February 4, 2020 at 7:56 am GMT
@Truth3 But that get-out is a bit easy. It's like ghetto denizens complaining about "the man".

Yes, philosophical high ground, media high ground, rent-a-mob management ground and self-unaware ability to act decisively and shamelessly has been taken. Now what? Order up a box of Red Bull?

The sad fact is that there are REAL reasons for getting Trump's ass dragged off into the sunset, but they involve wars and hits for you-know-who, so nobody is ever going to mention those.

Ludwig Watzal , says: Website Show Comment February 4, 2020 at 8:33 am GMT
Pat Buchanan describes all the steps of a corrupt political system to remove a sitting US President from office with bogus charges, and their handlers in the media played the loudspeakers and an inaffable role. This gang bears the responsibility that all the major institutions are untrustworthy. CNN leads the lying press crowd. I was not surprised hearing that the Iowa caucus did produce any results yet. As it seems, the "right" person didn't come out first; Joe Biden. The corrupt Democratic Party starts already at the beginning of the primaries by rigging the election. The Dems are still suffering from the defeat of the Queen of Darkness, Hillary Clinton, and their corrupt entourage. The Democratic Parts seems incapable to clean out this Augean stable. The last telling example has been the charade of impeachment. As long no Heads will roll, the Democratic Party will remain in the political quagmire, and corruption will prevail.
Tulip , says: Show Comment February 4, 2020 at 11:43 am GMT
What Sanders is doing is revolutionary, in the sense that he is raising enough money to run a national campaign, and winning, without taking corporate money.

American politics is controlled by a two-party cartel, and candidates have to join the cartel and take the corporate money to get elected, resulting in policies like high immigration that make sense to the Chamber of Commerce but not to many voters. Sure, you can pander to voters and then do the bidding of the Chamber, but a candidate that does more than pander is a stronger candidate.

You could have a real populist right if you had a candidate who could generate campaign funding solely from grass roots contributions and refused to take corporate money. Granted this is not the culture of the GOP, but the reality is that the program of the American cartels is deeply unpopular with huge swaths of the American people, and the future belongs to the group that can effectively carry out a hostile take-over of the organization and then, not having to obey the corporate donors, puts in place a political program that actually accomplishes the agenda: something like mandatory everify rather than say stupid symbolic fights about a "wall" that never gets built, or maybe conduct a foreign policy that does not have to have pre-approval from Sheldon Adelson.

Realist , says: Show Comment February 4, 2020 at 12:15 pm GMT
@Priss Factor

It makes me wonder. Even though Jews are over-represented in elite institutions, the great majority of Deep State is still made up of goyim. Then, why are they all so servile to Jewish agendas and Jewish wishes?

Jews have lots of wealth and control the narrative. Plus the average Jew is smarter than the average goyim.

Do goyim lack a mind of their own?

In many cases yes.

It could be that deep state goyim just happen to share the same ideas and values as the Jews. Or it could be their minds were molded by Jewish-run media and academia.

The latter is the case.

Jews are captains of the ship. Deep State goyim must man the engines with no sense of direction or destiny of their own.

This has happened many times in history the out come not so good for Jews.

Realist , says: Show Comment February 4, 2020 at 12:22 pm GMT
@nsa

Henry Ford was the last WASP to resist jew banking and finance.

And Henry Ford actually produced something of value. As opposed to most rich Jews who produce financial products , which are detrimental to most goyim, but very lucrative to Jews.

Johnny Smoggins , says: Show Comment February 4, 2020 at 1:17 pm GMT
@John Johnson "The worst leftist of all time was not Jewish and in fact sent a lot of Jews packing. His name was Stalin, maybe you have heard of him."

No the worst leftist of all time was the creator of it all, Karl Marx, who absolutely was Jewish. Jews like to use goy cat's paws like Stalin, Roosevelt and Bush to do their dirty work but never forget who's behind it all.

Truth3 , says: Show Comment February 4, 2020 at 2:50 pm GMT
@John Johnson Rosa Kaganovich would call you an idiot so I don't have to.
TGD , says: Show Comment February 4, 2020 at 3:58 pm GMT
Pat wrote:

How we accomplish great things again, giv(en) our seemingly unbridgeable differences, remains a mystery.

Hasn't the US had enough of "accomplishing great things?" Let's pull back and stop trying to remake the world in our own image.

John Johnson , says: Show Comment February 4, 2020 at 4:23 pm GMT
@Johnny Smoggins No the worst leftist of all time was the creator of it all, Karl Marx, who absolutely was Jewish. Jews like to use goy cat's paws like Stalin, Roosevelt and Bush to do their dirty work but never forget who's behind it all.

Marx was half-Jewish and White egalitarian marauding predates Marxism. Napoleon and Lincoln both believed in war for equality.

Did the Jews force Stalin to send millions to the Gulag? Was pol pot also forced by the Jews to kill his own people? Pretty amazing that Jews were able to manipulate even Asian leftists when there were zero Jews in those countries.

The corollary of blaming Jews for everything is that non-Jewish leftists are never responsible for their own actions. This is amusing since behind closed doors leftist leaders will admit certain politically incorrect truths which shows they are not Goy-drones. But according to the Unz Blamin' Jews club they are just victims of manipulation. Poor wittle victims that are consciously lying and would send us all to gulags if they could.

Rurik , says: Show Comment February 4, 2020 at 4:39 pm GMT
@anonymous

Can this columnist not acknowledge that the people of Crimea voted to secede from Ukraine

Whose Side Is God on Now?

April 4, 2014 by Patrick J. Buchanan

In his Kremlin defense of Russia's annexation of Crimea, Vladimir Putin, even before he began listing the battles where Russian blood had been shed on Crimean soil, spoke of an older deeper bond.

Crimea, said Putin, "is the location of ancient Khersones, where Prince Vladimir was baptized. His spiritual feat of adopting Orthodoxy predetermined the overall basis of the culture, civilization and human values that unite the peoples of Russia, Ukraine and Belarus."

Indicting the "Bolsheviks" who gave away Crimea to Ukraine, Putin declared, "May God judge them."

Putin is entering a claim that Moscow is the Godly City of today and command post of the counter-reformation against the new paganism.

Putin is plugging into some of the modern world's most powerful currents.

Not only in his defiance of what much of the world sees as America's arrogant drive for global hegemony. Not only in his tribal defense of lost Russians left behind when the USSR disintegrated.

He is also tapping into the worldwide revulsion of and resistance to the sewage of a hedonistic secular and social revolution coming out of the West.

https://buchanan.org/blog/whose-side-god-now-6337

It seems to me, that in a sense, Buchanan is declaring that Putin is 'planting Russia's flag' as the new moral center of the dying ((murdered)) Western world, with Moscow as the " the Third Rome".

As the West descends into the moral 'sewer', Putin's Russia is returning to the ideals of Christian virtues and traditional values.

"But the war to be waged with the West is not with rockets. It is a cultural, social, moral war where Russia's role, in Putin's words, is to "prevent movement backward and downward, into chaotic darkness and a return to a primitive state."

Would that be the "chaotic darkness" and "primitive state" of mankind, before the Light came into the world?"

In other words, Patrick Buchanan knows very well indeed who the villains are vis-a-vis Crimea, and Russia, vs. the ((Globohomo)). And he's willing to say so, eloquently, when it suits him to do so.

But even so, there was that vomit reflex moment when I read "writes WCF's Allan Carlson, "Russia is defending Judeo-Christian values . "

So Pat does pepper his articles with paeans to the Globohomo vernacular of the day, I suppose for reasons of appealing to the masses, such as they are. But if you've been reading Pat for as long as I have, you know he's well aware of the subtle nuances behind claims of 'annexing Crimea', but this column is all about the obvious corruption on display with the impeachment farce, and how the Democrats all gush when Obama does something corrupt, but howl and screech when it's 'done' by Trump.

So in that context, he's simply using Crimea as an example of Democrat hypocrisy. Like trying to impeach Trump for endeavoring to uncover the rat-hole of uber-corruption between Obama/Hillary/Biden/Nuland – and the former regime in Ukraine.

IOW, what Trump did, (what he was actually impeached for) was the "off the reservation" attempt to expose their uber-corruption. That he trusted the current ((regime)) in Ukraine, and in his own deepstate, was his monumental error.

Then, there's this:

The NSC and State Department have been exposed as employing individuals with an exaggerated view of their role in the origination and the execution of foreign policy. Disloyalty and animosity toward the chief executive appear to permeate the upper echelons of the "deep state."

The arrogance on display from all those diplomats, with sanctimonious outrage, at a president that actually thinks *he's* in charge of foreign policy! 'Who does he think he is?!, to decide when Ukraine gets their belligerent weapons to use on Putin's/Hitler's aggressive Russia?! These decisions are all made wayyyy above that asshole's pay grade, and we need to put him in his place!'

Not in our lifetime have the institutions of government and the establishment been held in lower regard.

Almost all now concede we have become an us vs. them nation.

Liberal Jews, who hate Trump's guts with the searing heat of a thousand exploding suns, vs. war mongering neocon Jews, who also hate Trump, but see in him a very pliant and useful idiot.

@ Priss

Or they're just afraid of Jewish power that, via media, blackmail, and bought off politicians, can destroy anyone.

Bingo

If you're a goyim in the administration, and you mumble something about how much the wars are costing, either in untold trillions or in political capital, the dagger-eyed glowering would be immediate from every Jew in the room. 'So, we have a little wannabe Himmler here. He'll soon fine out what happens to Adolf wannabes, when he gets his arse handed to him, and he's out on the streets'. Make him the first on your list.'

Everyone with two synapses to rub together, knows that all these wars are Jewish supremacist wars of conquest. Duh. Even the war on Yemen, is a proxy war against Iran. So the moment anyone tries to rein in the belligerence, he's going to have Hymie to pay. And that is what this really is all about. Trump's holding back weapons from Ukraine, is seen as counter productive to the ((greater agenda)), and so they pile on. And if the president of the United States, can be keelhauled for a year, and impeached, for daring to obstruct the Eternal Wars for Israel*, then how well will some lesser veck fare if he too thinks the wars are not the greatest thing since sliced bread?

The Jews are uniform and connected on certain subjects. The Eternal Wars are one of them. I know some liberal Jews. To this day, they seem to worship Obama, and loath Trump with obvious distain, (clear hatred), but when it comes to the wars, they're kosher.

That's why there's perfect conformity from both isles in DC, on the need to continue the wars. That's why both Fox news and ABCNNBCBS.. et al, are all perfectly aligned on that particular issue. Which is why Tulsi has been 'Ron Pauled'. When it's something all Jews are all aligned on ** , then it's unwritten, and woe be to any wrong-minded goyim, who's brave enough to step over that particular line.

*Obama got a pass on a lot of things, because the liberal Jews gushed when he walked into the room. Trump gets no such leeway.

** .. in reality, since first entering Congress in 1991, Sanders has compiled a lengthy record of support for war and defense of the predatory interests of American imperialism."

Sanders' record demonstrates what he considers "necessary wars." It also includes the NATO air war against Serbia in 1999, launched on the pretext of stopping the imminent ethnic cleansing of Kosovars.

In 2001, Sanders joined in a near-unanimous vote in favor of the invasion of Afghanistan. Today -- now that the nearly twenty-year-long war is widely unpopular -- Sanders conveniently declares that his earlier vote was a "mistake." But he has continued to endorse US wars in the Middle East, including the US proxy war in Syria.

Sanders has also supported Israel's repeated assaults on Gaza, imperialist war crimes made possible with the support of the United States. In a 2014 town hall meeting, Sanders shouted down an antiwar protester who challenged his support for Israel even as it was committing egregious crimes against the Palestinian population.

Moreover, Sanders has publicly voiced support for the use of assassinations and "extraordinary rendition" in the so-called "war on terror." In 2015, when asked whether anti-terrorism policies under a Sanders administration would include drones and special forces, Sanders replied that he supported "all that and more."

https://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2020/01/11/sand-j11.html

John Johnson , says: Show Comment February 4, 2020 at 5:23 pm GMT
I'm amazed Pat even posts here when half of you guys couldn't analyze the contents of a turkey sandwich without some screed about Jews.

Jews are depicted as some monolithic bloc and yet Israel would undoubtedly take Trump over Sanders.

So the first Jewish president would be rejected by the world wide Jewish conspiracy? Some conspiracy.

As a reminder the presidential candidate that actually wanted government troops to kick in doors and take guns was an Irish Texan. But I'm sure that's somehow the fault of Jews even though the Jewish candidate has been a moderate on guns.

follyofwar , says: Show Comment February 4, 2020 at 5:57 pm GMT
In the fifth paragraph, Pat writes: "Tuesday, Trump takes his nationally televised victory lap in the US Capitol with his SOTU address, as Mitch McConnell and a humiliated Speaker Nancy Pelosi sit silently side-by-side behind him."

I'll forgive Pat the senior moment, as he surely knows that VP Pence, not Mitch McConnell, will be sitting next to our senile Speaker.

anonymous [245] Disclaimer , says: Show Comment February 4, 2020 at 6:18 pm GMT
@Rurik "In other words, Patrick Buchanan knows very well indeed who the villains are vis-a-vis Crimea, and Russia, vs. the ((Globohomo)). And he's willing to say so, eloquently, when it suits him to do so.
[I]f you've been reading Pat for as long as I have, you know he's well aware of the subtle nuances behind claims of 'annexing Crimea', "

Please. Just run "Crimea" in the search engine against Mr. Buchanan's columns. -- > 11/22/2019: " .. 2014, when Vladimir Putin's Russia seized Crimea .." What's subtle or nuanced about "seized"? Do I need to show you some of his other Beltway bits, like his standing assertion that Russia "hacked" the 2016 US election?

I repeat: Mr. Buchanan's jobs as Stagehand Right in the Washington puppet show are to whitewash the imperialism and to lead enough Red sheep (like you?) to vote in the next Most Important Election Ever.

Refute it, or admit it. Neither should require another 1,300 words.

Rurik , says: Show Comment February 4, 2020 at 6:58 pm GMT
@John Johnson

Jews are depicted as some monolithic bloc and yet Israel would undoubtedly take Trump over Sanders.

in the comment right above this one, I just wrote

"Liberal Jews, who hate Trump's guts with the searing heat of a thousand exploding suns, vs. war mongering neocon Jews, who also hate Trump, but see in him a very pliant and useful idiot."

Jews don't control everything. But when it comes to N. America's foreign policy, you'd have to be a huge knucklehead not to know of AIPAC, CFR, and PNAC, and all the other Jewish supremacist institutions herding our congress-critters like so many sheep, to their Eternal Wars for Israel.

Or ,

..you can explain how its in the American people's interest to spend seven+ trillion, (all of it borrowed at interest) to slaughter, main and displace millions of innocent people, who just happen to be inconvenient to Israel's imperial ambitions. While simultaneously getting tens of thousands of young American soldiers dead, maimed or so soul-shattered they're committing suicide at some 20 a day?

Or, would you really have us all believe, that Saddam did 9/11, and that he and Gadhafi had WMD, because they "hate our freedom", and so we have to "fight them over there, so we don't have to fight them over here"

?

Johnny Smoggins , says: Show Comment February 4, 2020 at 7:13 pm GMT
@John Johnson But for the Jews who controlled the Communist party in the Soviet Union grooming and promoting him, Stalin would've been a minor tyrant terrorizing the peasantry in the Georgian countryside. Unfortunately for them, their pet got out of control and started to bite the hand that fed him. The corollary to this is Jews in the US promoting "civil rights" and then having some of their negro pets (like Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton) turn on them.

Remind us friend, where the idea for Marxism came to Asians from? The answer of course is from the Jew Marx with financing provided by Jacob Schiff and other wealthy Jews. Perhaps Pol Pot may have found some other outlet for his murderous instincts but as has been the case in so many instances around the world, it was Jewish Marxism that not only lit the fuse, but set it up to begin with.

Don't get me wrong, do gooder Christian types are nearly as much to blame for the mess we're in as the Jews. The difference is that while Christians are naive, gullible and stupid, their motivations are essentially good even if the outcome is bad. With Jews, the motivation behind what they do is pure malice.

You seem new here. Welcome. Do some more reading and exploring and then comment more. You're not the first newbie to wander in from Breitbart ready to defend Israel and the Jews without first having educated himself, and you won't be the last.

Rurik , says: Show Comment February 4, 2020 at 7:20 pm GMT
@anonymous

Do I need to show you some of his other Beltway bits, like his standing assertion that Russia "hacked" the 2016 US election?

from my little screed

"So Pat does pepper his articles with paeans to the Globohomo vernacular of the day, I suppose for reasons of appealing to the masses, such as they are."

Mr. Buchanan's jobs as Stagehand Right in the Washington puppet show are to whitewash the imperialism and to lead enough Red sheep (like you?) to vote in the next Most Important Election Ever.

Refute it, or admit it.

I admit it!

HAHAHAAAAHAAA!!!

I'm actually a Trump supporter because, that's right! I'm a racist!!!

HAHAHAAAHAAAA!

That's why we're all pretending that the Dems are actuyally way worse than Trump when it comes to the Eternal Wars, because we all secretly love Trump, because he called Mexicans 'bad hombres!! And he said Obama wasn't born here, and we all love that kind of RACISM!

HAHAHAAAAA!!!!

When ever he mocks Maxine Waters, we all laugh at how racist we all are, and that's why Pat and the Deplorables and all of us closet racists are going to pull the lever for Trump!

Because we're racists!! And we don't even worship Obama!! the One!!!

HAHAHAAAHAAAA!!!!

White supremacy, baby!!!

HAHAAAHAAAAAAA!!!!

You're going to get four more years of Orange clown racism! He grabs fulsomely offered gold-digger's pussies like crazy, and we don't even care!!!

We even like, that he likes women, and isn't even gay!!

HAHAHAAAA

I was just talking to a buddy of mine, and we were lamenting some of Trump's more egregious disappointments, (assassinating world leaders, tossing Bibi's salad, etc..). But there was one thing about which we could agree, as bad as Trump is, (and he's a disaster), we are very much going to enjoy the show, as Hillary and Madow and Maxine and all the other white-male-castrating hags and losers and SJW POS, will be soul-raped on election day.

That, might go a long way towards mollifying Trump's disastrous presidency.

Sometimes I watch those videos of the reaction to the 2016 election, and the tears, and howls of existential angst, from Hillary supporters, and boy oh boy are those memories great.

heh

John Johnson , says: Show Comment February 4, 2020 at 8:44 pm GMT
@Rurik Jews don't control everything. But when it comes to N. America's foreign policy, you'd have to be a huge knucklehead not to know of AIPAC, CFR, and PNAC

Zomg Jewish lobbies. You can actually be against aid to Israel while not taking the view that Jews control every single war and leftist action. Not everything has to be about the Jews.

Or, would you really have us all believe, that Saddam did 9/11, and that he and Gadhafi had WMD, because they "hate our freedom", and so we have to "fight them over there, so we don't have to fight them over here"

What would make you think that I believe Saddam did 9/11? I have said nothing of the sort.

It's actually possible to be against foreign wars and also against blaming the Jews for everything. Anglo leaders have started foreign wars without the influence of Jews. If that angry Austrian didn't start a needless war with Poland we wouldn't be in the mess we are in today. Then he went and made his great dunderheaded move of attacking Russia before defeating Britain. Did the Jews make him do it while they were in boxcars? The Romans started all kinds of needless foreign wars without Jewish influence. But if a US president does it then MUST BE the Jews. Nevermind that GWB talked about wanting to get even with Saddam or that Cheney had all sorts of war industry connections. Just blame Jews, it's the Unz way. Thank you Mr. Jewish Unz for providing this forum.

SolontoCroesus , says: Show Comment February 4, 2020 at 8:49 pm GMT
Disagree w/ Buchanan's key premise: the coup leaders, as Rick Wiles identified them, the Jew Coup, got everything they wanted and still have tethers in place to force more from Trump, in the fullness of time.

-- Give us Golan or we'll unleash "six ways til Sunday"

-- Give us Jewish capital in Jerusalem or we will unleash "six ways til Sunday"

-- Convey gas rights in Golan to Cheney, other Jewish and American interests or we'll unleash "six ways til Sunday"

-- Kill Soleimani or we'll unleash "six ways til Sunday"

-- Give us full sovereignty and political cover to take all of ersatz Israel, Palestinians be damned, or we'll unleash "six ways til Sunday"

-- Ensure that Syria remains fragmented and without financing to rebuild or we'll unleash "six ways til Sunday"

--
By the way: those of you familiar with gematria or Kabbalah -- remember Schiff's "parody" of the Trump phone call? Among its other weird references that, I suspect, were not without esoteric meaning, Schiff repeated the number seven. Does that mean anything?

IMHO, the outcome -- 'acquittal' in the Senate -- is just as pre-ordained by Schiff-Nadler – Engel – Schumer, as was the No vote on witnesses: Dems are just as dirty as GOP; they'd have been pissing in their Guccis if Republicans had voted to call more witnesses who might have implicated Democrats in corruption.

AGREE that Pelosi has been humiliated: nothing Jew Coupers like better than using, then humiliating a Catholic; that she is Italian (Roman) is cream cheese on the bagels.

John Johnson , says: Show Comment February 4, 2020 at 9:02 pm GMT
@Johnny Smoggins But for the Jews who controlled the Communist party in the Soviet Union grooming and promoting him, Stalin would've been a minor tyrant terrorizing the peasantry in the Georgian countryside.

Where does Lenin fall into this revisionist history? He had nothing to do with the rise of Stalin? Why didn't the Jews rally around Trotsky, an actual Jew?

Anyways the Jews dominated the NKVD, not the central party. They executed anyone including Jews. Their top leaders were eventually executed by Stalin to cover up his crimes. Their hegemony in the NKVD was eventually broken but the "Jewish USSR" myth remained for decades.

Remind us friend, where the idea for Marxism came to Asians from? The answer of course is from the Jew Marx with financing provided by Jacob Schiff and other wealthy Jews.

This is exactly the irrational thinking that I am talking about. If some Asian dictator kills a million people you actually blame a half-Jew's Communist book even though said book never called for killing a million people. Total removal of responsibility. You are giving a free pass to any blood thirsty leftist.

Don't get me wrong, do gooder Christian types are nearly as much to blame for the mess we're in as the Jews. The difference is that while Christians are naive, gullible and stupid, their motivations are essentially good even if the outcome is bad.

This shows you don't even understand leftiest leadership in the US or EU. They are mostly secular, not Christian. They are not manipulated children. They know exactly what they are doing and fully intend to
transform the US into Brazil.

Whites like Edwards and Beto are not the pawns of some Jewish indoctrination project. They know full well that they are lying to the public. Nothing on this website would surprise them. You could tell them all about Jewish lobbies or Jews in the NKVD and they wouldn't care. Leftists have an egalitarian vision and don't care about what you have to say.

Rurik , says: Show Comment February 4, 2020 at 9:48 pm GMT
@John Johnson

Not everything has to be about the Jews.

not everything is..

But the Eternal Wars for Israel, are.

Btw, you're an imbecile

Johnny Smoggins , says: Show Comment February 4, 2020 at 9:57 pm GMT
@John Johnson Can we agree that a person needn't actually be a believer himself to carry the ideals that the religion espoused?

Marx may have never worn a yarmulke or even believed in God but that doesn't mean that his actions, perhaps unconsciously, weren't rooted in Jewish ideals. And every single SJW, even the most stridently atheist, is animated by Christian ideals about making the world a better place.

Bottom line – Whites are in the sorry state we're in because of both Jews and Christians but Jews were, and are, motivated by a poisonous hatred of Whites. We'll have to deal with dumb Christians and SJWs on our own, we don't need Jews with all their money, power and hate helping them.

You're right though; Before we can tackle the Jewish problem we have to clean our own house first.

SeekerofthePresence , says: Show Comment February 4, 2020 at 10:43 pm GMT
@Priss Factor Sounds like the couple on their honeymoon who went over Niagara Falls in a barrel. Not sure if they survived.
eah , says: Show Comment February 4, 2020 at 11:04 pm GMT
a Failing Establishment

Actually the Establishment is doing fine: the government employs more people, spends more money, and exerts more influence than ever, while big tech censors legitimate opposition/dissent.

It's the American people who are screwed by being chained to this freak show by the coercive tax system, especially when it's obvious voting makes no difference.

"Already, the odds of a modern 30-50-year-old dying from suicide, alcohol, or drugs in America are 10 times as high as the odds an 18-35-year-old in 1960 had of dying in Vietnam." https://t.co/RrudZ1cvwX

-- Christoph Nahr (@ChrisNahr) January 27, 2020

John Chuckman , says: Website Show Comment February 5, 2020 at 12:54 am GMT
Ridiculous use of the word "coup."

https://chuckmanwordsincomments.wordpress.com/2020/02/01/john-chuckman-comment-the-destructive-outcome-of-trumps-impeachment-ugly-precedents-set-for-the-future-and-accommodating-a-man-with-perhaps-the-most-dangerous-personality-ever-to-serve-as-presi/

https://chuckmanwordsincomments.wordpress.com/2020/01/22/john-chuckman-comment-more-on-the-nature-of-american-impeachment-why-it-is-and-has-been-a-political-act-the-american-constitutions-limits-and-how-it-is-treated-by-washingtons-political-establ/

Crazy Horse , says: Website Show Comment February 5, 2020 at 1:23 am GMT
@Corvinus Maybe you should contact Gordon Duff over at VT. He'd probably hire you in a New York minute. It seems that you don't even have the decency to admit that the Impeachment was nothing but a Deep State orchestrated circus or more accurately farce actually unbelievably promoting the NeoNazi State of Ukraine as our "ally" who were fighting the evil Rooskies on our behalf.

Number one. Why would it be in the interest of the American people to get involved in a proxy war with Russia? A nation that happens to have more nukes and a more effective and deadlier method of delivering them than we do. According to military analysts we are at least two decades behind them.

Next even if Russia was a valid target. They are not attacking Russia they are attacking Dombass, dumb ass which happens to be a breakaway region of Ukraine.

Two. Talk about being low life sniffling scum they embrace John Bolton the epitome of Neocon subversion as an "ally". Just shows how low the establishment demoncrats have sank proving that they have no moral compass whatsoever and like the CIA the ends justify the means.

What you and the DemonCrats have shown is that you aren't any better than Trumpenstein but probably in many ways far worse.

Well done! Shit head.

David Walters , says: Website Show Comment February 5, 2020 at 1:45 am GMT
"The damage they have inflicted upon our country's institutions is serious."

No more true words have ever been printed.

I fear for my country.

SeekerofthePresence , says: Show Comment February 5, 2020 at 1:47 am GMT
Coup is 'Murikan as apple pie.
"It's Californication!"
Destroy the other or say good bye.
Devil's inauguration.
SeekerofthePresence , says: Show Comment February 5, 2020 at 2:12 am GMT
@Crazy Horse The Sarmat ICBM is now in serial production and being deployed. Range: 18,000km. Payload: 10 nuclear or hypersonic warheads.
Sulu , says: Show Comment February 5, 2020 at 4:38 am GMT
@Corvinus Hey Corvinus,
The Democrats swung and missed. It was a Hail Mary effort that was bound to fail but their blind hatred of Trump would not allow them to see the inevitable outcome. The Democrats simply can't accept that their annotated one (Hillary) was just not Presidential timber, but many voting Americans could see it. You lost in 2016 and you will lose the Presidency in 2020, almost certainly. If you lose the house too that will simply be the icing on the cake. Democrats will then be relegated to the sidelines and will be able to do nothing but squall impotently from the dark spaces they all inhabit. I await your lamenting and gnashing of teeth after Nov.

The Democratic party may be done for a decade because of this. Their continued actions have damaged themselves and strengthened Trump but their denial does not allow them to see it.

Democrats are like the tranny males they claim to espouse. When they look in the mirror the reflection they see is that of a beautiful girl. But in reality all they are is just a bunch of dicks.

Crazy Horse , says: Website Show Comment February 5, 2020 at 5:15 am GMT
@SeekerofthePresence Exactly we're at least 20 years beyond the Rooskies as far as hypersonic weapons. They're still on the drawing boards here while:

https://www.fort-russ.com/2019/08/russia-is-ahead-of-us-in-hypersonic-technologies-experts-say/

John Johnson , says: Show Comment February 5, 2020 at 5:21 am GMT
@Johnny Smoggins And every single SJW, even the most stridently atheist, is animated by Christian ideals about making the world a better place.

Bottom line – Whites are in the sorry state we're in because of both Jews and Christians but Jews were, and are, motivated by a poisonous hatred of Whites. We'll have to deal with dumb Christians and SJWs on our own, we don't need Jews with all their money, power and hate helping them.

I don't actually believe this is the case and I'm not trying to be argumentative.

If Christianity is the underlying problem then European countries with greater declines in Christianity should see less support for liberalism. Children raised in secular households should be less like to be liberal.

This hasn't happened and in fact the opposite is true. Sweden is very secular and very leftist. Children raised in secular homes are far more likely to be liberal. The data is clear on this.

We aren't dealing with Christianity or some pseudo form. We are dealing with a new egalitarian religion called liberalism. The leaders are secular are fully conscious of what they are doing. If anything Christianity in the right form can provide a layer of inoculation.

So no I don't think blaming Jews or Christians is valid or helpful.

John Johnson , says: Show Comment February 5, 2020 at 5:22 am GMT
@Rurik Btw, you're an imbecile

Ur Stooped.

Did you get an award from the Unz Joo Hatin' club for that brilliant retort?

anon [311] Disclaimer , says: Show Comment February 5, 2020 at 6:11 am GMT
@Corvinus Hey. Some Democrat candidates got what they wanted. Old Joe Biden barely survived Iowa, which was not unintended collateral damage, but rather very intended and targeted. I can imagine Elizabeth Warren's fingerprints all over this one.

We will see in November exactly who was too clever by half.

Crazy Horse , says: Website Show Comment February 5, 2020 at 7:45 am GMT
@Crazy Horse Meant to say behind not "beyond" oopsie
redhorse , says: Show Comment February 5, 2020 at 9:18 am GMT
The french had a solution during their revolution!
swamped , says: Show Comment February 5, 2020 at 9:19 am GMT
@John Johnson "This hasn't happened and in fact the opposite is true. Sweden is very secular and very leftist" Sweden is not as 'leftist' as often portrayed. In the last election the Social Democrats fell to their lowest vote share in over 100 years. They were reduced to only 100 seats in the Riksdag (less than a 1/3)& formed a minority coalition govt. with the Greens & Commies comprising only 144 seats. The centrist Alliance coalition picked up 143 seats & the rising stars – the right-wing Sweden Democrats, rose to 62 seats. The coalition was slightly revamped after an early vote of no-confidence but the Social Democrats are waning & the centrist & right-wing Parties are gaining. The most recent polls in the country show the Sweden Democrats actually running ahead of the Social Democrats now, making it the most popular Party in the country at this time. Most of those "Johnson's" aren't very leftist anymore. But this still doesn't detract from the fact that Christianity is NOT the problem. After all, our greatest living pundit, Pat Buchanan, is Christian & he's no raving, leftist loony.
KenH , says: Show Comment February 5, 2020 at 2:03 pm GMT
Like a coup really matters when Trump has turned into either Jeb Bush or Lindsey Grahamnesty without the lisp and the drawl. Trump has become orange Jebulus. He's not the Donald Trump I voted for in 2016. The Potomoc fever bug finally bit him.

At Trump's State of the Zionist Union speech (SOTZU) he received raucous applause and shouts of "four more years" from the Republican side of the chamber. Most of these people used to oppose him but now that Trump has sold out to the deep state (if he ever really opposed it in the first place), especially on foreign policy, they love him and have accepted him as one of their own.

Tulip , says: Show Comment February 5, 2020 at 4:22 pm GMT
@KenH Orange golem good, muh capitalism!
follyofwar , says: Show Comment February 5, 2020 at 4:45 pm GMT
@SolontoCroesus Not to worry, Pelosi got her revenge last night when she churlishly tore up her copy of Trump's SOTU address right after he was done speaking. What a classless little tramp that woman is.

Is it not true, though, that the three biggest Jewish plotters in Congress (Schiff, Nadler, and Schumer) have been equally humiliated?

Virgile , says: Show Comment February 5, 2020 at 6:26 pm GMT
Hillary Clinton, Nany Pelosi and her likes have poisoned deaply the democratic party without any chance of cure soon.
Revenge for their humiliation has been the engine behind the Muller trial and the impeachment circus.
They failed dramatically and now the DNC is not only more humiliated but it has lost the little credibility it still had.
Only an old fashioned democrat leader can bring back confidence in the democratic ideology that has been lost by Hillary and Cie. It seems too late for this to happen and Trump will be back . As it is expected that the economy in the US may enter into a recession in the second term, why taking away from him the humiliation he will face?
siberiancat , says: Show Comment February 5, 2020 at 8:27 pm GMT
@John Johnson Marx himself was of a pure ethnic Jewish stock. His father converted to Christianity.
His wife was German.
John Johnson , says: Show Comment February 5, 2020 at 8:50 pm GMT
@swamped Sweden Democrats actually running ahead of the Social Democrats now, making it the most popular Party in the country at this time. Most of those "Johnson's" aren't very leftist anymore. But this still doesn't detract from the fact that Christianity is NOT the problem.

They have around 20% of the vote which is significant but the majority still buys into mainstream leftist BS.

After all, our greatest living pundit, Pat Buchanan, is Christian & he's no raving, leftist loony.

Good point and quite ironic that we have someone here blaming Christians when PB is a stalworth against the left. Some of the strongest anti-left parties in Europe are in Eastern Europe where support for the church is strong. The belief that secularism undermines liberalism simply doesn't match the data. If anything it seems that secular Whites double down on liberalism because they don't have a religion.

John Johnson , says: Show Comment February 5, 2020 at 9:01 pm GMT
@siberiancat Marx himself was of a pure ethnic Jewish stock. His father converted to Christianity.
His wife was German.

There is no such thing as pure German-Jewish stock. They are all mixed. There was a DNA test a while back proved this.

anonymous [284] Disclaimer , says: Show Comment February 5, 2020 at 10:35 pm GMT
It is Feb 5th and teh US Senate has absolve the President, thus ending 4yrs of endless Conspiracies, coups and impeachments. Trump has emerge victorious and single handedly destroy the DEMs party , this in spite of the Fake news establishment, the deepstate and people within his own innercircle. Trump with the support of the American Deplorables have defeated the DEM/LEFT/Antifa continues attacks. BUT it seems that the GOP does NOT understand, realize the golden historical unprecendentes opportunity to REnake the party, rolled back the Great BLUE wave that never was. The GOP is poised to recover the House, turn the Blue states RED again. IF the GOP does NOT keep this momentum going, if they break their inner discipline, or the GOP makes the ILL mistake to sabotage Trump the GOP will go back to playing second fiddle to the DEMs and will probably lose their best chance to REmake, REimagine, REorganize, REdefine REunite the GOP and the Conervative movement in America Trumpism is on the March..
Corvinus , says: Show Comment February 5, 2020 at 11:15 pm GMT
@Crazy Horse "It seems that you don't even have the decency to admit that the Impeachment was nothing but a Deep State orchestrated circus or more accurately farce actually unbelievably promoting the NeoNazi State of Ukraine as our "ally" who were fighting the evil Rooskies on our behalf."

Why are you spreading Fake News?

"Why would it be in the interest of the American people to get involved in a proxy war with Russia?"

I never directly nor indirectly made any comment about this situation. Pray tell, are you a Russian troll?

"Talk about being low life sniffling scum they embrace John Bolton the epitome of Neocon subversion as an "ally"."

Why not let him, the Bidens, Mulvaney, Pompeo, Guiliani, and Parnas have the opportunity to speak before the Senate if it was the "perfect call"? What does Trump have to hide?

Furthermore, do you support any president digging up dirt on a political rival while in office by way of a proxy?

Corvinus , says: Show Comment February 5, 2020 at 11:17 pm GMT
@Sulu "The Democrats swung and missed."

Actually, democracy swung and missed. But there are over two dozen investigations taking place relating to Trump and his associates, and more information will be coming about the Ukraine fiasco.

"The Democrats simply can't accept that their annotated one (Hillary) was just not Presidential timber, but many voting Americans could see it."

Actually, she won the popular vote. But I do agree that she was, along with Trump, not "presidential timber".

"You lost in 2016 and you will lose the Presidency in 2020 "

I didn't run. Moreover, I'm an educated white married man who makes his own decisions about politics, race, and culture. You?

anastasia , says: Show Comment February 5, 2020 at 11:23 pm GMT
What this impeachment hoax so rawly exposes is that the politicians who brought on the impeachment and voted in favor of it (and that includes Romney) think very little, in fact, nothing about what Joe Biden and his son did. They think it was perfectly OK. What that should tell everyone is that they too would do (if they haven't already) the same thing given the opportunity as Congressmen, Senators, a Vice President, or President. They would fill their pockets and the pockets of their families given the same opportunity. People should reflect on that next time these people run for office.
Crazy Horse , says: Website Show Comment February 6, 2020 at 12:25 am GMT
@Corvinus Russian troll? My question is are you a moron? You don't have to answer because the question is rhetorical.

Seems anyone who disagrees with dipshits like you must be "agents of Putin Inc". McCarthy would be sooo proud of brain dead assholes like you and to answer your question. NO!

Now go fuck yourself.

Crazy Horse , says: Website Show Comment February 6, 2020 at 12:40 am GMT
@Virgile They lost whatever credibility they had by rigging the primary and accusing anyone that disagreed with the Queen of the Damned that they must be a Russian Troll or Agent. Corvinus perfectly epitomizes this idiocy.
Crazy Horse , says: Website Show Comment February 6, 2020 at 12:46 am GMT
@Corvinus "Won" the popular vote is a consolation prize in a presidential election. Besides that's questionable due to the fact she "won" 1) in states that used Soros owned Smartmatic Voting Machines 2) reported votes that far exceeded the number eligible voters registered. For instance LA County reported that 145% of eligible voters "voted" in the last general election.
danand , says: Show Comment February 6, 2020 at 12:52 am GMT

"includes Romney) think very little, in fact, nothing about what Joe Biden and his son did."

Anastasia, it's not disputed that Romney has a least one close associate who worked with Hunter, but actually in the Ukraine, at Burisma; but I don't believe that's Romney's angle here.

I think Romney is setting up to run 3rd party for President. Of course the objective will not be to become the next president: it will be to take out Trump, and make possible a Bloomberg victory. I would guess Romney will hold off announcement as long as possible to ensure maximum chaos. Doesn't even need to make all the state ballots to achieve "victory".

[Feb 07, 2020] It should be clear on what the fight is really about in the US. It's about stopping the rise of socialism. Regardless of party affiliation, the elites know what the populace wants and are desperately trying to stop it. I refuse to accept that the Democrats have no idea what they're doing.

Feb 07, 2020 | www.moonofalabama.org

Ian2 , Feb 6 2020 20:02 utc | 65

It should be clear on what the fight is really about in the US. It's about stopping the rise of socialism. Regardless of party affiliation, the elites know what the populace wants and are desperately trying to stop it. I refuse to accept that the Democrats have no idea what they're doing.

I honestly can't see Sanders getting the nomination with all the corruption openly being displayed. I would be pleasantly surprised if Sanders did manage to get it, but he still have to deal with the ELECTORAL COLLEGE (EC). The Electors have the final say. Yes, one can point out that some States have laws forcing Electors to vote what the populace wants, but that is being challenged in court. The debate on whether such laws are unconstitutional or not, remains to be seen. It's too late now to deal with the EC for this election, but people need to be more active in politics at the State level as that's where Electors are (s)elected.

IF Sanders is genuine then he should prepare to run as an independent just to get the EC attention.

ben , Feb 6 2020 22:01 utc | 79

RR @ 14;
Everything in the U$A today, is driven by the unofficial Party of $, and it's reach transcends both Dems & repubs. It's cadre is the majority of the D.C. "rule makers", so we get what they want, not what "we the people" want or need.

They own the banks, MSM media, and even our voting systems.

IMO, to assume one party is to blame for conditions in the U$A is a bit naive.

Question is, can anything the masses do, change the system? Or is rank and file America just along for the ride?

I'm assuming us peons will get what the party of $ wants this November also.

P.S. If any blame is given, it needs to go to the American public, because " you get the kind of Gov. you deserve" through your inactions...

It's a lot like living, death is certain, but until that occurs, I'll move forward trying to mitigate current paradigms.

[Feb 07, 2020] As for being to the left of Clinton, so was Benito Mussolini. I don't see that as a meaningful description.

Feb 07, 2020 | www.moonofalabama.org

Bubbles , Feb 6 2020 22:16 utc | 81

As for being to the left of Clinton, so was Benito Mussolini. I don't see that as a meaningful description.

Posted by: William Gruff | Feb 6 2020 21:38 utc | 76


Spinner for the new / coming fascist order Mr. Gruff?

Clinton and trump may be competing for the Title of who is the greatest example of Mussolini's fascist doctrine, but Clinton isn't in the White House. Trump's posture at his rallies, the essence of said rallies, the message delivered at said rallies, his subservience to far right dictator ideology, all scream Mussolini wannabe working the disgruntled crowd who need a Messiah to lead them to the next level of the American dream, that ain't gonna happen.

America's rich love them the labor of po folk in foreign lands and trump is nothing more than a Judas Goat.

AshenLight , Feb 7 2020 0:44 utc | 103

@ Posted by: Bubbles | Feb 6 2020 22:16 utc | 81

For my money, the correct Trump analog from Italian politics is Berlusconi, not Mussolini.

[Feb 01, 2020] Has The FBI Been Lying About Seth Rich by Craig Murray

Notable quotes:
"... Finally, and perhaps this is the most important point, the FBI was at this time supposed to be in the early stages of an investigation into how the DNC emails were leaked to Wikileaks. The FBI here believed Wikileaks to be indicating the material had been leaked by Seth Rich who had then been murdered. Surely in any legitimate investigation, the investigators would have been absolutely compelled to check out the truth of this possibility, rather than treat it as a media issue? ..."
Authored by Craig Murray,

A persistent American lawyer has uncovered the undeniable fact that the FBI has been continuously lying , including giving false testimony in court, in response to Freedom of Information requests for its records on Seth Rich. The FBI has previously given affidavits that it has no records regarding Seth Rich.

A Freedom of Information request to the FBI which did not mention Seth Rich, but asked for all email correspondence between FBI Head of Counterterrorism Peter Strzok, who headed the investigation into the DNC leaks and Wikileaks, and FBI attorney Lisa Page, has revealed two pages of emails which do not merely mention Seth Rich but have "Seth Rich" as their heading. The emails were provided in, to say the least, heavily redacted form.

Before I analyze these particular emails, I should make plain that they are not the major point. The major point is that the FBI claimed it had no records mentioning Seth Rich, and these have come to light in response to a different FOIA request that was not about him. What other falsely denied documents does the FBI hold about Rich, that were not fortuitously picked up by a search for correspondence between two named individuals?

To look at the documents themselves, they have to be read from the bottom up, and they consist of a series of emails between members of the Washington Field Office of the FBI (WF in the telegrams) into which Strzok was copied in, and which he ultimately forwarded on to the lawyer Lisa Page.

The opening email, at the bottom, dated 10 August 2016 at 10.32am, precisely just one month after the murder of Seth Rich, is from the media handling department of the Washington Field Office. It references Wikileaks' offer of a reward for information on the murder of Seth Rich, and that Assange seemed to imply Rich was the source of the DNC leaks. The media handlers are asking the operations side of the FBI field office for any information on the case. The unredacted part of the reply fits with the official narrative. The redacted individual officer is "not aware of any specific involvement" by the FBI in the Seth Rich case. But his next sentence is completely redacted. Why?

It appears that "adding" references a new person added in to the list. This appears to have not worked, and probably the same person (precisely same length of deleted name) then tries again, with "adding for real" and blames the technology – "stupid Samsung". The interesting point here is that the person added appears not to be in the FBI – a new redacted addressee does indeed appear, and unlike all the others does not have an FBI suffix after their deleted email address. So who are they?

(This section on "adding" was updated after commenters offered a better explanation than my original one. See first comments below).

The fourth email, at 1pm on Wednesday August 10, 2016, is much the most interesting. It is ostensibly also from the Washington Field Office, but it is from somebody using a different classified email system with a very different time and date format than the others. It is apparently from somebody more senior, as the reply to it is "will do". And every single word of this instruction has been blanked. The final email, saying that "I squashed this with ..", is from a new person again, with the shortest name. That phrase may only have meant I denied this to a journalist, or it may have been reporting an operational command given.

As the final act in this drama, Strzok then sent the whole thread on to the lawyer, which is why we now have it. Why?

It is perfectly possible to fill in the blanks with a conversation that completely fits the official narrative. The deletions could say this was a waste of time and the FBI was not looking at the Rich case. But in that case, the FBI would have been delighted to publish it unredacted. (The small numbers in the right hand margins supposedly detail the exception to the FOIA under which deletion was made. In almost every case they are one or other category of invasion of privacy).

And if it just all said "Assange is talking nonsense. Seth Rich is nothing to do with the FBI" then why would that have to be sent on by Strzok to the FBI lawyer?

It is of course fortunate that Strzok did forward this one email thread on to the lawyer, because that is the only reason we have seen it, as a result of an FOI(A) request for the correspondence between those two.

Finally, and perhaps this is the most important point, the FBI was at this time supposed to be in the early stages of an investigation into how the DNC emails were leaked to Wikileaks. The FBI here believed Wikileaks to be indicating the material had been leaked by Seth Rich who had then been murdered. Surely in any legitimate investigation, the investigators would have been absolutely compelled to check out the truth of this possibility, rather than treat it as a media issue?

We are asked to believe that not one of these emails says "well if the publisher of the emails says Seth Rich was the source, we had better check that out, especially as he was murdered with no sign of a suspect". If the FBI really did not look at that, why on earth not? If the FBI genuinely, as they claim, did not even look at the murder of Seth Rich, that would surely be the most damning fact of all and reveal their "investigation" was entirely agenda driven from the start.

In June 2016 a vast cache of the DNC emails were leaked to Wikileaks. On 10 July 2016 an employee from the location of the leak was murdered without obvious motive, in an alleged street robbery in which nothing at all was stolen. Not to investigate the possibility of a link between the two incidents would be grossly negligent. It is worth adding that, contrary to a propaganda barrage, Bloomingdale where Rich was murdered is a very pleasant area of Washington DC and by no means a murder hotspot. It is also worth noting that not only is there no suspect in Seth Rich's murder, there has never been any semblance of a serious effort to find the killer. Washington police appear perfectly happy simply to write this case off.

I anticipate two responses to this article in terms of irrelevant and illogical whataboutery:

Firstly, it is very often the case that family members are extremely resistant to the notion that the murder of a relative may have wider political implications. This is perfectly natural. The appalling grief of losing a loved one to murder is extraordinary; to reject the cognitive dissonance of having your political worldview shattered at the same time is very natural. In the case of David Kelly, of Seth Rich, and of Wille Macrae, we see families reacting with emotional hostility to the notion that the death raises wider questions. Occasionally the motive may be still more mixed, with the prior relationship between the family and the deceased subject to other strains (I am not referencing the Rich case here).

You do occasionally get particularly stout hearted family who take the opposite tack and are prepared to take on the authorities in the search for justice, of which Commander Robert Green, son of Hilda Murrell, is a worthy example.

(As an interesting aside, I just checked his name in the Wikipedia article on Hilda, which I discovered describes Tam Dalyell "hounding" Margaret Thatcher over the Belgrano and the fact that ship was steaming away from the Falklands when destroyed with massive loss of life as a "second conspiracy theory", the first of course being the murder of Hilda Murrell. Wikipedia really has become a cesspool.)

We have powerful cultural taboos that reinforce the notion that if the family do not want the question of the death of their loved one disturbed, nobody else should bring it up. Seth Rich's parents, David Kelly's wife, Willie Macrae's brother have all been deployed by the media and the powers behind them to this effect, among many other examples. This is an emotionally powerful but logically weak method of restricting enquiry.

Secondly, I do not know and I deliberately have not inquired what are the views on other subjects of either Mr Ty Clevenger, who brought his evidence and blog to my attention, or Judicial Watch, who made the FOIA request that revealed these documents. I am interested in the evidence presented both that the FBI lied, and in the documents themselves. Those who obtained the documents may, for all I know, be dedicated otter baiters or believe in stealing ice cream from children. I am referencing the evidence they have obtained in this particular case, not endorsing – or condemning – anything else in their lives or work. I really have had enough of illogical detraction by association as a way of avoiding logical argument by an absurd extension of ad hominem argument to third parties.

* * *

Unlike his adversaries including the Integrity Initiative, the 77th Brigade, Bellingcat, the Atlantic Council and hundreds of other warmongering propaganda operations, Craig's blog has no source of state, corporate or institutional finance whatsoever. It runs entirely on voluntary subscriptions from its readers – many of whom do not necessarily agree with the every article, but welcome the alternative voice, insider information and debate. Subscriptions to keep Craig's blog going are gratefully received .


Smi1ey , 19 minutes ago link

It's weird how everybody except the Mockingbird Media knows.

Ed Butowsky on the ongoing Seth Rich controversy

JasperEllings , 32 minutes ago link

" We have powerful cultural taboos that reinforce the notion that if the family do not want the question of the death of their loved one disturbed, nobody else should bring it up. "

Yeah. We see that all the time on ID Network ... whenever a family member wants authorities to stop investigating their "loved one's" death, it usually means they're protecting the guilty party. But the cases are solved by good cops who ignore the family and do what's right.

Investigating and prosecuting murders is not all about the family. It's also about finding and removing murderers from society so they can't hurt anyone else.

Vesta , 37 minutes ago link

Craig is the former UK diplomat who says he picked up the thumb drive from the leaker. Craig has since deleted that post from his blog.

Lord Raglan , 1 hour ago link

And neither Mueller nor any other government official ever bothered to interview Julian Assange even though he agreed to do so. That Mueller didn't but took CrowdStrike's word for the fact that so-called "Russians" hacked the DNC computer and then gave it to Wikileaks tells you about all you need to know. Mueller knew who likely did it but didn't want to make it part of his Report or let it be made public. Meanwhile the Russia Collusion Hoax marched on, got a life of its own and is allowed to continue in its various forms like the impeachment of a Donald Trump.

Smi1ey , 1 hour ago link

Seymour Hersh says they have documents.

What I know comes off an FBI report.

- Seymour Hersh

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gYzB96_EK7s

hardmedicine , 30 minutes ago link

"Is it true that the hidden metadata contained within the FIRST WikiLeaks DNC files batch clearly shows sequential time stamps (on each file copied) proving that a very high speed transfer rate took place that could only be done with direct internal access to a DNC computer on the network (i.g., a USB thumb drive or NAS drive plugged directly into a local PC or a LAN network jack within the building) as opposed to the much slower file transfer rate that would be recorded in the metadata if Russia or other hackers had remotely accessed a DNC computer or local DNC network via a remote WAN/Internet connection (to transfer those files from the outside)? Another rumor that needs to be put to rest is a SECOND batch of files may exist (that is almost identical to the FIRST batch), except it includes some fake Russian breadcrumb "fingerprints" that may have been added to support the "Russian's hacked it" story that was circulated within the intelligence agencies and leaked out to the media. IDK, true or false? "

synopsis of the real whistleblower Bill Binney, ex-NSA Technical director who has had his life ruined because he published this info.

[Jan 31, 2020] What's going on right now with Elizabeth Warren and Hillary Clinton is the beginning of sticking the knife back into Bernie's back by Bill Martin What follows originates in some notes I made in response to one such woman who supports Bernie. There are two main points.

Highly recommended!
Jan 31, 2020 | off-guardian.org

1. What's going on right now with Elizabeth Warren and Hillary Clinton is the beginning of sticking the knife back into Bernie's back. These two played a major role in doing that in 2016, and now they're getting the band back together again. Okay, that's no mystery.

The real question is, What are Bernie supporters and those who (one way or another) support the Democrats, going to do about it? When and if Warren and Clinton succeed in taking Bernie down–and of course Biden and the Obamas are onboard for this, as well–will Democrats (and Dem-supporting "leftists," etc.) be so blinded by TDS that they'll just say,

"Oh well, we still have to vote for " Warren, Biden, etc.?

I think this runs parallel to what some have said about "letting the CIA help with the impeachment"–it's truly delusional, reactionary stuff. Likewise, people getting in a huff because "Bernie called her a liar on national television." No problem, apparently, that Warren first called Bernie a liar. Even more, no problem that Warren's whole life and career is based on a lie–a lie that, even now, she justifies with bullshit about how she "just loves her family so much." Indeed, Hillary's intervention in the following days was very likely intended to take attention away from Warren's attack on Sanders, as well as, of course, to once again put HRC out there as the potential savior at the convention.

It seems to me that the lesson here is that, if Bernie doesn't get the nomination, no other candidate (from among the frontrunners) is acceptable, especially because of the role they will have played in taking down Bernie and his movement.

I have two basic reasons for hoping Sanders can get the nomination and that there could be a Trump/Sanders election:

i. For Sanders to get the nomination there will have to be a very strong, dedicated, and focused movement, which will essentially have to defeat the powers-that-be in the Democratic Party and in whatever one wants to call the agglomeration of power mechanisms that form the establishment and the State. Sanders will have to do what Trump did with the Republican Party in 2016, except with Sanders and the power structures he will be up against (and with which he is more compromised than Trump ever was), this will be much, much harder. I really don't think it can happen -- and we're seeing major moves in this effort toward eliminating Bernie just in the week that has passed since I started writing this. However, this does mean that, if Bernie can build (much further) and lead the movement to seriously address these power structures, and even beat them in some significant ways, then something tremendous will have been accomplished -- "the harder they come, the harder they fall," or at least I hope so. ii. Despite what you and many others say and (I feel) are a bit too desperate to think, Sanders does have some things in common with Trump, at least thematically -- and a lot of my arguments in my articles have to do with the importance of these themes being out there, in a way that they never would have been with any other Republican, Hillary Clinton or any of the other current frontrunners besides Sanders, and any of the other media with the very important exceptions of Tucker Carlson, Steve Hilton, and perhaps a couple others on Fox News (perhaps Laura Ingram) -- and this is not only something that the anti-Trumpers absolutely hate, they hate it so much that they can't even think about it.

That is, Trump and Sanders have in common that they 1) profess that they want to do things that improve the lives of ordinary working people, and 2) profess that they want to draw back militarism.

What I emphasize is that these terms would not even be on the table if it weren't for Trump -- and yes, to some extent if it weren't for Bernie, but there is a way in which Bernie can only be out there at all because Trump has put these things on the table.

A lot of blowback against my articles has been against my argument that getting these terms and the discourse around them on the table is very important, a real breakthrough, and a breakthrough that both clarifies the larger terms of things and disrupts the "smooth functioning" (I take this from Marcuse) of the neoliberal-neoconservative compact around economics and military intervention.

Okay, maybe I'm right about this importance, maybe I'm not -- that's an argument I've dealt with extensively in my articles and that I'll try to deal with definitively in further writing -- but certainly a very important part of not letting Sanders be taken down by the other frontrunners (and HRC, and other nefarious forces, with Warren playing a special "feminist" and Identity Politics role here -- a role that does nothing to help, and indeed does much to hurt, ordinary working people of all colors, genders, etc.) will be to further sharpen the general understanding of the importance of these themes.

Significantly, there is a third theme which has emerged since the unexpected election of Donald Trump -- unexpected at least by the establishment and the nefarious powers (though they were thinking of an "insurance policy"); on this theme, I don't know that Sanders can do much -- working with the Democratic Party, he is too implicated in this issue, and he does not have whatever "protection" Trump has here.

What I am referring to are those nefarious powers behind the establishment and the ruling class, and that have taken on a life of their own -- I don't mind calling this the Deep State, but one can just think about the "intelligence community" and especially the CIA.

Whatever -- the point is that Trump has had to call them out and expose them in ways that they obviously do not like, and also his agenda of a world where the U.S. gets along well-enough with China and Russia at least not to risk WWIII, or, perhaps more realistically, not to tip the balance of things such that Russia goes completely over to a full alliance with China, a "Eurasian Union," which both Putin and Xi have spoken about, is not to their liking.

Whether Sanders would call out these nefarious factors if he were in a position to do so, I don't know -- I don't have great confidence that he would -- but it is also the case that he is not in a position to do so, these powers can easily dispose of Sanders in ways that they haven't been able to, so far, with Trump.

If one does think these themes are important, especially the first two (with further discussion reserved regarding the powers-behind-the-powers), then I wish that Trump-haters would open their minds for a moment and think about what it apparently takes in our social system to even begin to get these themes on the table.

In any case, regarding Sanders, the movement he is building will have to go even further with the first two themes if Sanders is nominated, and at least go some distance in taking on the third theme. This applies even more if Sanders were to be elected. (This is where you might take a look at the 1988 mini-series, A Very British Coup -- except that how things go down in the U.S. will not be so "British.") Here again, though, if Sanders is to build a movement that can openly address these questions, this will be tremendous, a great thing.

So this is it in a nutshell: If Sanders were to be nominated, then there is the possibility, which everyone ought to work to make a reality, that we could have an election based around the questions, What can be done to improve the lives of ordinary working people?, and, What can be done to curb militarism and end the endless interventions and wars?


Antonym ,

Bernie is a nice guy – too nice: no match for the shark pools from Fairfax county, Lower Manhattan or the Clinton clan . The 2016 DNC candidate selection revelations proved this.

The only untainted strong Democratic candidate is Tulsi Gabbard, but she has all Establishments against her.

Fair dinkum ,

Since Reagan's Presidency, all US elections have been about rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic.
The ship may be sinking slowly, but the outcome will be the same.

Gall ,

I'd say it was long before Ronnie got elected to office. Remember it was Carter and Zyb who got involved in the imperial quick sand of Afghanistan (mixing metaphors here) that is after being run out of 'Nam by a bunch of angry natives who had gotten tired of America "being a force for good" by reining "freedom and democracy" on them from the bomb bays of B 52s which I think is going to a be similar situation to what will soon happen in Iraq if we dawdle too long.

Elections have in reality become all pomp with no circumstance. Flip a coin and it always comes up heads. It's a stacked deck that public are asked to play every two years thinking the odds are in their favor when it never really is. Might as well head to Vegas following the dusty trail of Hunter S Thompson.

Charlotte Russe ,

It's not all that complicated Obama laid the groundwork ensuring Bernie's defeat when he interfered in deciding who would Chair the DNC. Tom Perez was Obama's pick. Bernie wanted Keith Ellison. Perez guaranteed neoliberal centrist Dems would maintain control. Tom Perez didn't disappoint– his nominations for the 2020 Democratic Convention standing committees are a like a who's who of centrism. Most of the folks on this "A list" would fit quite nicely in the Republican Party.

Bernie a FDR Democrat, is considered too radical by the wealthy who enjoy their Trumpian tax cuts and phony baloney stock market profits. If Trump, was just a bit less crude and not so overtly racist he'd be perfectly acceptable. Bernie, who thinks the working-poor are entitled to a living wage, healthcare, a college education, and clean drinking water is anathema to the affluent liberals who like everything just the way it is. They long for the Obama days when two wars were quietly expanded to seven, when the Wall Street crooks got a pass, and when health insurance lobbyists had their way with the federal government–the CIA was absolutely ecstatic with Obama. Trump was a bit of a speed bump for the security state, but nothing really threatening as he stuffed the pockets of the arms industry and the surveillance state with billions of working-class tax dollars. The Orangeman is having a few internecine battles with the intelligence agencies, but in the end they thoroughly had their way with the buffoon.

Bernie on the other hand, is a bit more complex. He can't be as easily attacked. Of course, the mainstream media news has all the usual Corbyn tricks in their bag, and Bernie could fall to the wayside like Corbyn if he's incapable of unapologetically fighting back. Bernie's working-class supporters want to see him give his attackers the one-two-punch and knock them out before the DNC Convention.

If Bernie manages to win numerous primaries the threat won't come from Warren or Hillary that's so 2016. The new insidious "Bernie enemy" is billionaire Bloomberg. Who is waiting in the wings If Biden takes a deep dive, Daddy Warbucks will make a play to cause a brokered convention. And that's when Perez and his Republican/Dems will takedown Bernie. Bernie's followers MUST come out swinging and not capitulate like they did last time. They have to force the issue, create a stir and threaten to abandon the Dems to start a Workers Third Party. Young progressives have this one big shot at making a difference, and they can't allow themselves to be sheepdogged into voting for another neoliberal who's
intent on maintaining the status quo. Remember, if you don't move forward you're actually moving backward into planetary ecocide.

Gall ,

Hey check this out. Seems the DNC is shaking in their boots about the possibility of a third party hijacking their "base":

https://www.mintpressnews.com/liberal-establishment-warning-third-parties-not-to-ruin-2020-election/264460/

Here's one from Whitney implying that they needn't worry because plans are in the works to install King Cyrus II as the permanent ruler with the help of his Zionist friends in the Department of Hebrew Security:

https://www.mintpressnews.com/liberal-establishment-warning-third-parties-not-to-ruin-2020-election/264460/

Even so it looks like Trump has decided to get rid of us noninterventionist and antiwar naysayers by fully bringing in the Dispensationalist Armageddon rapture embracing nut jobs who stand with the Talmudic genocidal racists in Israel who believe that Jesus Christ is boiling for an eternity in excrement and that his mother Mary was a whore:

http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/52918.htm

I wish that this insanity was fantasy.

mark cutts ,

Hi Bill

we have witnessed in the UK the defamation of Corbyn the ' Left Disrupter ' as he wanted to throw back the normal state of political play.

He and the well meaning Labour Party was headed off at the pass.

We have to remember that the Ruling Class have to have fall back positions and that Biden is better than Bernie as is Warren and so on.

It appears to me that the DNC also has its fallback positions too and Bernie will be chopped by the Super Delegates once again on the altar of ' electabilty ' ( read any form of Socialism – American or British is not acceptatble to the PTB ) and that is how it may end.

The battle at the moment in the UK Labour Party is which leader will back up and support extra Parliamentary action in resistance to this very right wing Tory government?

In the US the thing is the same if Bernie doesn't get the nomination.

Personally I would think that he would be a plus ( despite his foreign policy views ) but remember that Trump was a maverick Republican yet I'm not sure that Sanders would veer over to that position.

If he did then the " action " part of the steep learning curve would have to kick in to defend him and more to the point his genuinely progressive policies.

In the UK now Corbyn as the personification of ' Socialist ' threat is no longer doorstepped by the British media.

Instead the installation of a Leftish Centrist by the media ( i.e. a person that is -no threat to the existing order ) is a requirement.

This is all under the guise of a " Strong Opposition " to the right wing government.

Warren – not Biden seems to be that kind of favourite for the Ruling Class should Trump fall.

We had Neil Kinnock and Tony Blair – you in the US will get Warren.

I wish Bernie and his backers weel but I don't see it happening.

Maybe Tulsi Gabbard in another 4 years?

She and AOC are very good But this is not their time.

Not yet.

Richard Le Sarc ,

When I think of how Corbyn refused to fight back against ENTIRELY mendacious and filthy vilification as an 'antisemite', I think it might be possible that the MOSSAD told him that if he resisted he might end up, dead in his bath, like John Smith.

bevin ,

Where the world weary gather to tell us how they have been let down.
Bill nails it here:
" i. For Sanders to get the nomination there will have to be a very strong, dedicated, and focused movement, which will essentially have to defeat the powers-that-be in the Democratic Party and in whatever one wants to call the agglomeration of power mechanisms that form the establishment and the State. Sanders will have to do what Trump did with the Republican Party in 2016, except with Sanders and the power structures he will be up against (and with which he is more compromised than Trump ever was), this will be much, much harder ."

Anyone who believes that elections, as such, lead to great changes needs a keeper. And one who can read the US Constitution aloud for preference.
But this is not to say that at a time like this-and there have been very few of them in US history- when there is the possibility of a major candidate challenging some of the bases of the ruling ideology-albeit by doing little more than running on a platform of refurbished Progressivism- there is really no excuse for not insisting that the challenge be made and the election played out.
Sanders is not just challenging the verities of neo-liberalism but, implicitly undermining the political consensus that has supported the Warfare State since 1948.
The thing about Bernie is that he is authenticated by the enemies that he has enrolled against him and the dramatic measures that they are taking against him. Among those enemies are the Black Misleadership Class, and the various other faux progressives who are revealing themselves to be last ditch defenders of the MIC, Israel- AIPAC is now 'all in' in Iowa and New Hampshire- and the Insurance industry. It is an indication of the simplicity of Bernie's political task that no section of Congress gives more support to the Healthcare scammers than the representatives of the community most deprived by the current system. If he manages to get through to the people and persuade them that he will fight for Free Healthcare for all and other basic and long overdue social and economic reforms he can break the hold that the political parties have over a system everyone understands is designed to make the rich-who own both parties- richer and the great majority poorer. That has been the way that things have been going in the USA for at least 45 years.

Gall ,

Here's the point you've missed here Bill and that Bernie had a mass appeal to the Independents that is until he sold out to the "Democratic" establishment which out of the two parties has to be the least democratic since it adopted the elitist and plutocratic Super Delegate system that can ride roughshod over the actual democratic will of the voters.

Of course a cosmetic change has been made that these delegates aren't allowed to vote until the Convention but as I said it is "cosmetic" since that was originally the way this undemocratic system was set up in the "Democratic" party until Hillary Clinton used it as a psychological weapon during that sham called a "primary" to convince the hoi polo that her nomination or more accurately coronation was already a foregone conclusion.

There is also another factor that most voters are not aware of and that is the so called "Democratic" party has come up with a dictatorial "by law" that can nullify the result of the primary if the candidate isn't considered "democratic" enough by the Chairman of the DNC which in Bernie's case is very possible since technically he is an Independent running as a "Democrat". This is what Lee Camp the "Nuclear Option".

Explained here in his inimitable style:

https://www.filmsforaction.org/watch/lee-camp-the-dncs-secret-nuclear-option-to-stop-bernie-sanders-and-what-we-can-do-about-it/

Personally I gave up on Bernie after he sold out and shilled for that warmongering harpy Hillary who if elected would accept it as a mandate to launch WW III while ironically trying to convince us all that the "noninterventionist", "antiwar" candidate was actually the greater of the two evils.

Yeah right.

Anyway no longer have any faith in the two party system. As far as I'm concerned they can both go to hell. I've already made my choice:

https://www.markcharles2020.com

He probably needs to adjust his message more to appeal to those of us who tend to be more Libertarian and is not exactly a Russell Means but with a little help from the American Indian Movement and others can probably "triangulate" his appeal to cover a broader political spectrum. Instead of what has been traditionally known as the "left".

Greg Bacon ,

After Obama, the golden liar and mass-murderer and now Tubby the Grifter, another liar and mass-murderer, I have no desire to vote in 2020, unless Tulsi is on the ticket.

If Sanders is smart and survives another back-alley mugging by the DNC and the Wicked Witch of the East, and gets the nod, he'll take on Tulsi–Mommy–as his VP.
If he does that, then Trump, Jared the Snake and Princess Bimbo will have to find another racket in 2021.

Gall ,

Yeah Trumpenstein is a far cry from the Silver Tongued Devil O-Bomb-em. Even so both of them sold us a bill of goods that neither of them delivered on.

But hey that's politics in America at least since Neoliberal prototype Wilson which is lie your ass off until you get elected at least.

Willem ,

Much magical thinking here.

If we act now and support Sanders things will change for the better?

I surely hope so, but hope and change is soo 2008.

And if the Hildebeast enters the race, life on earth will end?

Don't think so.

Perhaps we should do this different this time. Get away from the identity politics, look what is really needed, and demand for that, not caring about 'leadership'. You know, French yellow vests style. Actually if you look a little bit outside of the MSM bubble, you see demonstrations and people demanding better treatment from the government and corporations everywhere.

The US 2020 elections, will be a nothing burger I predict. Like all elections are nothing burgers and if they are not they will fake it, or call it 'populism' that needs to be stopped (and will be stopped).

I would have voted Sanders though, if I could vote for Sanders, Similar as I would have voted for Corbyn if I could have voted for Corbyn. Voting is a tic, a habit, an addiction that is difficult to get rid of, but deadly in the end since we have nothing to vote for, except to vote for more for them at the cost of everyone else, no matter what politicians say

It's liberating to lose some of your illusions and silly reflexes, although a bit painful in the beginning as is with all addictions. The story used to 'feel' so good.

See also https://act.represent.us/sign/the-problem/

Richard Le Sarc ,

If voting changed anything, it would be outlawed.

[Jan 30, 2020] There is no shortage of people with Visions. I am keeping an eye on this bunch:

Jan 30, 2020 | www.moonofalabama.org

Likklemore , Jan 30 2020 15:21 utc | 24

There is no shortage of people with Visions.

'Greta, bonnie Prince Charles and the pirate billionaires and trillionaires'- In another post I queried how did Greta go to Davos? Silly me; Greta was invited the keynote speaker. "Stop Climate change" was this year's theme: the Vision - 'stop the natural cycle of the universe' -
Now she intends to Trademark 'How Dare You' and set up a Foundation Indeed, Greta found her sugar daddies. Adults who encourage truancy.

my grandpa was a wise bloke and admonished "when politicians and do gooders are in the same room, keep an eye on your money."

William F. Engdahl names the pirates in the "Stop Climate" (cycles) Money Trail.
Follow the "Real Money" Behind the "New Green Agenda"

[.] Davos trustees

It was no accident that Davos, the promoter of globalization, is so strongly behind the Climate Change agenda. Davos WEF has a board of appointed trustees. Among them is the early backer of Greta Thunberg, climate multi-millionaire, Al Gore, chairman of the Climate Reality Project. WEF Trustees also include former IMF head, now European Central Bank head Christine Lagarde whose first words as ECB chief were that central banks had to make climate change a priority. Another Davos trustee is outgoing Bank of England head Mark Carney, who was just named Boris Johnson's climate change advisor and who warns that pension funds that ignore climate change risk bankruptcy (sic).

The board also includes the influential founder of Carlyle Group, David M. Rubenstein. It includes Feike Sybesma of the agribusiness giant, Unilever, who is also Chair of the High Level Leadership Forum on Competitiveness and Carbon Pricing of the World Bank Group. And perhaps the most interesting in terms of pushing the new green agenda is Larry Fink, founder and CEO of the investment group BlackRock.[.]

TCFD and SASB Look Closely

As part of his claim to virtue on the new green investing, Fink states that BlackRock was a founding member of the Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures (TCFD). He claims, "For evaluating and reporting climate-related risks, as well as the related governance issues that are essential to managing them, the TCFD provides a valuable framework."[.]

TCFD was created in 2015 by the Bank for International Settlements, chaired by fellow Davos board member and Bank of England head Mark Carney. In 2016 the TCFD along with the City of London Corporation and the UK Government created the Green Finance Initiative, aiming to channel trillions of dollars to "green" investments. The central bankers of the FSB nominated 31 people to form the TCFD. Chaired by billionaire Michael Bloomberg, it includes in addition to BlackRock, JP MorganChase; Barclays Bank; HSBC; Swiss Re, the world's second largest reinsurance; China's ICBC bank; Tata Steel, ENI oil, Dow Chemical, mining giant BHP and David Blood of Al Gore's Generation Investment LLC. Note the crucial role of the central banks here.[.]


of note: Mark Carney upon leaving his position of Governor Bank of England will serve as global warming adviser to Boris Johnson. Who knew Carney was a scientist?
Pre-alert:
Tax on Excessive garbage output is coming to your town. You will be restricted to xxxKGs/LBS annually. Your garbage will be weighed and at December 31st any excess above the permissible will attract additional tax.
Anyone see the unintended consequences?

[Jan 30, 2020] DNC In Disarray After Chairman's Secret Golden Parachute Revealed

Jan 30, 2020 | www.zerohedge.com

DNC In Disarray After Chairman's Secret Golden Parachute Revealed by Tyler Durden Thu, 01/30/2020 - 17:20 0 SHARES The perpetually broke , deck-stacking DNC has been thrown into disarray just days before the Iowa caucus after Buzzfeed revealed that a cadre of top officials at the Democratic National Committee approved, then concealed a 'generous exit package for the party chair, Tom Perez, and two top lieutenants,' which has left Democrats 'confounded over the weekend by the optics and timing of the decision on the eve of the presidential primary."

The proposal, put forward as an official DNC resolution during a meeting of the party's budget and finance committee last Friday, would have arranged for Perez and two of his top deputies, CEO Seema Nanda and deputy CEO Sam Cornale, to each receive a lump-sum bonus equaling four months' salary within two weeks of the time they eventually leave their roles .

Senior DNC officers, including members of Perez's own executive committee, learned of the compensation package after its approval, through the rumor mill, setting off a furious exchange of emails and texts over the weekend to determine what had been proposed, and by whom . - Buzzfeed

And while four-months salary might be more of a 'bronze parachute', Perez rejected the "extra compensation" package for himself and his two lieutenants in an email to officials .

Perez says he will serve through the end of the 2020 election, while all three officials have denied having any prior knowledge of, or involvement in the pay package resolution .

"One-hundred percent of our resources are going towards beating Donald Trump," said DNC communications director Xochitl Hinojosa, who added "DNC leadership will not accept any extra compensation recommended by the budget committee, which didn't operate at the direction of DNC leadership. The resolution was crafted by the budget committee and did not involve the Chair, CEO, or Deputy CEO."

Taking the fall for the resolution are two members of the DNC's budget and finance committee - Daniel Halpern and Chris Korge, who described it as the first step in a "smooth transition" for Perez.

Halperin, an anti-minimum wage lobbyist , was appointed by Perez in 2017. He previously chaired Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed's 2009 moyoral campaign, and was a trustee for Barack Obama's 2008 inaugural committee.

Chris Korge is a Florida attorney hired in May of 2019. He was one of the top fundraisers for Andrew Gillum, Hillary Clinton, Bill Clinton, and served as the co-chairman for the Kerry Edwards campaign in 2004.

For years, the 64-year-old attorney, developer and one-time county hall lobbyist has been an important fundraiser for Democrats. He has raised millions for both Hillary and Bill Clinton, served as national co-chairman for Kerry Edwards Victory in 2004 and this year was co-chairman of Miami's unsuccessful bid to bring the Democratic convention to South Florida next summer. - Miami Herald

According to Buzzfeed , Halpern and Korge both said the resolution was above-board and a common business practice.

The resolution, which only applies to the 2021 transition, states that the outgoing chair, CEO, and deputy CEO will help facilitate donor and "stakeholder" relations, and convey "institutional knowledge" to the next chair, but is less specific about the requirements of the transition than the details of the compensation package: a lump sum of four months' pay, paid within two weeks, unless either Perez, Nanda, or Cornale is terminated for "gross misconduct."

On Tuesday, Halpern said the resolution was meant to serve only as a "nonbinding" starting point to ensure "continuity" between Perez's tenure and the next party chair . - Buzzfeed

Top Democrats within the DNC's leadership speaking on condition of anonymity said that they were shocked to learn of the compensation package on the eve of a presidential primary , amid a massive fundraising defecit .

"I think it is completely short-sighted and really stupid," said one senior official.

The package would have paid Perez around $69,000, Nanda around $61,000, and Cornale $39,000.


Wakesetter , 5 minutes ago link

Money must be tight if $70K is a issue. The internal polling for the DNC is a train wreck. Panic.

NeitherStirredNorShaken , 6 minutes ago link

The infighting is indicative of the ongoing DNC implosion. These parties, like the entire world's governments, were terminated long ago. NOBODY wants or needs the fake drama bullsh*t. If it's not on one side or the other it's on both to distract everybody. Like the ongoing fake impeachment fraud. Chump was finished day one on the job. And even if not certainly the public conspiring with both parties to commit sedition and treason after Parkland ensured it.

pHObuk0wrEHob71Suwr2 , 16 minutes ago link

Tom Perez - member of the Obama Transition Project's Agency Review Working Group responsible for the justice, health and human services, veterans affairs, and housing and urban development agencies. He is Secretary of the Maryland Department of Labor, Licensing and Regulation under Governor Martin O'Malley.

He worked in a variety of civil rights positions at the Department of Justice, including Deputy Assistant Attorney General for Civil Rights under Attorney General Janet Reno.

He also served as Director of the Office for Civil Rights at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services under Secretary Donna Shalala, and as Special Counsel to Senator Edward Kennedy. From 2001 until 2007, he was Assistant Professor of Law at the University of Maryland School of Law, and is an adjunct faculty member at the George Washington School of Public Health.

Walter Melon , 17 minutes ago link

Golden parachutes for a few years' work.

Even if it is only 4 months, apparently his annual salary of $276,000 wasn't enough for him to save up anything.

All meals paid for, all suits paid for, all transportation paid for ...

5fingerdiscount , 20 minutes ago link

$69 grand?

That's not even a parachute.

That's like jumping into the air and landing on the ground.

[Jan 30, 2020] The FBI Has Been Lying About Seth Rich - Craig Murray

Jan 30, 2020 | craigmurray.org.uk

Craig Murray

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"Epstein belonged to intelligence"

Maybe Seth Rich did too?

Doesn't take a genius to figure out the game here.

Unless you don't want to see it.

Rich family strangely silent about the lack of investigation. LOL.

Also: The ONLY other person that we've heard about that was "disturbed" enough by Sanders (sheepdog) treatment in 2016 to take action was Tulsi Gabbard (she resigned from her senior position). But she says nothing about Rich.

John A , January 29, 2020 at 16:03

Epstein was killed to silence him.

Rich was killed to discourage other possible whistleblowers or leakers.

Big difference.

Jackrabbit , January 29, 2020 at 16:25

John A: your comment should've begun with "I've been told that "

I haven't seen Epstein's or Rich's body. Have you?

Rich's supposed death conveniently ensured that the true source of the "hacked" emails would not be available to testify.

The "hack" was blamed on Russia and contributed to "Russiagate" – a strategic initiative to create a new McCarthyism.

!!

Jackrabbit , January 29, 2020 at 17:22

For clarity: we've been led to believe certain things that may not actually be true:

1) That Epstein was murdered – ignoring the possibility that he might've been extracted:
– Epstein was identified by his brother, not dna (despite Epstein's having been a convicted sex offender);
– There was a number of strange occurrences surrounding the death, including: an internet message about his being "switched out", very limited info about the body (which some say doesn't match Epstein's), cc-video that went missing, the relative ease of killing Epstein BEFORE he was jailed (if someone was really concerned about the potential for Epstein's releasing info), etc.

2) That Rich was murdered – but the Rich family doesn't seem too interested in finding the truth of why.

We have numerous examples of intelligence agencies trying to shape our perception of events. The White Helmets being a good example. We should be skeptical of narratives that herd us into a certain understanding of events – especially when we find that there are inconsistencies and hidden info.

!!

squirrel , January 29, 2020 at 21:04

I definitely believe Epstein was switched. I have seen nothing reported as evidence from the autopsy identifying the body (rule of thumb – where evidence matches the official narrative, it is reported, where it doesn't, it is withheld).

As you mention there was the reddit post from the prison worker about the switch before his death was announced.

The CCTV footage from the reported first unsuccessful suicide attempt was admitted in court to have been destroyed. This suggests that the first 'suicide attempt' was not a suicide attempt. I would suggest that it was a 'convincer' to set up the body switch. Of course we don't have CCTV footage from the second one either.

lysias , January 29, 2020 at 21:56

I think it's highly significant that the media never mention the possibility that Epstein was extracted.

Christy , January 30, 2020 at 00:57

I've definitely wondered about Epstein being extracted, but my hope would be that he is in protective custody spilling everything and that would help to explain why Barr corroborated the suicide. One can dream.

Mosaic , January 30, 2020 at 02:39

"an internet message about his being "switched out""

Huh. First time I have heard of this!
Where is that info, and what did the internet message say?
'What is an "internet message"?
An email?

Jackrabbit , January 30, 2020 at 03:47

The message (on 4Chan):

Here's a discussion of it: Epstein's Death Was On 4Chan Before Officials Announced It -- Now Authorities Are Investigating

One guy in the discussion put together a timeline:
05:16:36 Jeffrey Epstein dead -- dont ask me how I know, but Epstein died an hour ago from hanging, cardiac arrest. Screencap this
05:21:58 -- Was called out as a cardiac arrest at the manhattan federal detention facility. Worked asystole for 40 mins
05:31:30 -- lets say I know. Dont need a glowie coming to my crib. But they declared death at New York Presbyterian Lower Manhattan ER
05:36:45 -- screencap this then brudda and post when the news breaks
05:42:21 -- hanging (in response to being asked cause of cardiac arrest)
05:44:55 -- (from a different poster than the OP) Not saying anything after this pls do not try to dox me but last night after 0415 count they took him medical in a wheelchair front cuffed but not 1 triage nurse says they spoke to him. Next thing we know a trip van shows up? We do not do releases on the weekends unless a judge orders it. Next thing we know, he's put in a single man cell and hangs himself? Heres the thing, the trip van did NOT sign in and we did not record the plate number and a guy in a green dress military outfit was in the back of the van according to the tower guy who let him thru the gate. You guys i am shaking right now but i think they switched him out.
05:47:56 -- worked asystole arrest for 40 minutes, als intubated in the field/epi/2 liters NS infused. Telemetry advised bicarb and D50 in field. Pt transported to Lower Manhattan ER and worked for 20 minutes and called. Hospital administrator was alerted, preparing statements

The first post confirming the news:
06:00:35 -- Holy # its true, check New York Post

Note that the above times are PDT/MST. Add three hours for EDT -- NY time.

!!

pretzelattack , January 29, 2020 at 22:22

i've seen reports of other prisoners' being whacked, none of prisoners being extracted and switched. but it makes for a netflix show. epstein and rich were both whacked to prevent them from telling what they knew. that's the simplest explanation, and absent evidence to the contrary i'll go with it.

Sid Finster , January 29, 2020 at 15:55

Of course the FBI was lying. Duh.

The problem is that the honorable judge will do nothing about it, other than deliver a stern admonition to the FBI not to get caught again.

Tom Welsh , January 29, 2020 at 16:19

Omerta, innit?

Cubby , January 29, 2020 at 16:48

Nigel Farage and his gang embarrassing themselves and the UK in the EU parliaments UK Withdrawal from the EU Debate. Prattling on about no democracy in the EU but standing there in a EU parliament as an MEP. But no doubt he will be in the undemocratic House of Lords pretty soon.

Saying he hates the EU.

Brexiteers leaving with no class or dignity waving their silly tiny Union flags. The Irish woman Maireed McGuinness in the chair showed the UK rabble how to behave with some class.

Deb O'Nair , January 29, 2020 at 17:02

"Nigel Farage and his gang embarrassing themselves and the UK in the EU parliaments but standing there in a EU parliament as an MEP"

The only people who need to be embarrassed by Farage and his gang of morons are the people who have repeatedly sent him there, either through implicit support by voting for them or tacit support by not voting at all in EU election – either way he's a f*cking embarrassment to the so called UK electorate and the UK political system as a whole.

Squeeth , January 29, 2020 at 20:35

Why not, he can't get in the undemocratic House of Commons?

Sean_Lamb , January 29, 2020 at 16:59

A couple of things.

The files that Guccifer 2.0 was distributing had a creation date a few days before Rich's death. Binney and others have claimed that the speed on the transfer ruled out an internet connection, but it couple have been using the Linux cp command. What he suggested that bootable linux on a USB could have been plugged into a DNC computer, this would over ride the MS security and then the files were copied using the cp command.
What I have suggested is that perhaps FBI (or others) may have done this same operation to Seth Rich's lap top and taken the materials from him. These were subsequently passed to Guccifer 2.0, who released them in September 2016.

The other suggestion I would have is don't rule out the possibility Russians (or Ukrainians) may have killed Seth Rich. If the buried scandal in the email leaks was Browder and the Ziff brothers filching money from Russia, then what would be more appropriate if Russian mafia provided the muscle to eliminate who they believed was the source of the leaks? Then if they ever did get caught, the FBI could blame Vladimir Putin

bj , January 29, 2020 at 17:08

Ever heard of Occam's Razor?

Sean_Lamb , January 29, 2020 at 17:26

Yes, its a process used to natural sciences to give preference to simpler explanations if they fully capture the complexity of a system. For example, if planetary orbits can be mapped by a couple of equations, that is to be preferred to a system of epicycles.

From the late 20th C it acquired a minor secondary use as a heuristic shortcut to reject explanations about politics or current events which cause the speaker discomfort

bj , January 29, 2020 at 17:54

I hope you are comfortable in your toy universe.

Squeeth , January 29, 2020 at 20:36

Simply and well put. ;O)

Roberto , January 30, 2020 at 04:50

It has nothing to do with the 'discomfort' caused by confronting what is more likely truth when only conjecture is possible, but rather the recognition that humans tend to complicate rather than simplify. From its inception, the principle was to be applied to all observations, not just those of the physical universe.
William of Ockham (1285-1347/49) stated that:
'plurality should not be posited without necessity.' (pluralitas non est ponenda sine necessitate)

Deb O'Nair , January 29, 2020 at 17:39

Occam's Razor is a philosophical approach that says the simple explanation is favoured over the complex. Occam's Razor is worse than pointless in political debates because political lies are often complexities dressed up a simplicities. When dealing with political discourse concerning matters of truth then dialectics is your friend.

Deb O'Nair , January 29, 2020 at 17:10

" bootable linux on a USB over ride the MS security"

MS has security?

This seems unlikely as hard drives containing IP and other sensitive info tend to be encrypted to avoid such simple compromises, but the NSA can get 'round that easily enough – and there's plenty of useless system administrators employed because they have the right 'attitude' rather than any technical expertise.

Deb O'Nair , January 29, 2020 at 17:15

If the drive is encrypted it could be copied onto a bootable USB drive using the linux command "dd", then the encryption key could be broken at leisure.

Sean_Lamb , January 29, 2020 at 17:21

"hard drives containing IP"

I have no idea what you are trying to say. However since the target here would have been Rich's laptop, there is no reason to think it would have been encrypted.

It wouldn't require FBI or NSA involvement, just a private investigator. If Rich had been identified as a suspect, the DNC could have targeted his lap-top when he was at lunch. The possibilities are endless

Deb O'Nair , January 29, 2020 at 17:29

Intellectual property – i.e. personal/professional stuff that you write or hold in your possession.

Many people are savvy about this just in case they lose a laptop and don't want people accessing their browser cache etc. for online banking details. When you install MS you have an option to encrypt the drive and it is recommended on laptops.

Sean_Lamb , January 29, 2020 at 17:31

As I said, if the only weak point is that is a slight but non-zero possibility Rich's laptop may have been encrypted, I think I am doing pretty well.

Deb O'Nair , January 29, 2020 at 18:08

" I think I am doing pretty well."

Yes, I'm sure you do.

Magic Robot , January 29, 2020 at 19:59

Deb O'Nair
January 29, 2020 at 17:29
I understood the abbreviation 'IP' stood for 'Internet Protocol'.
Since texting overtook typing, abbreviations have become ambiguous at best.

uncle tungsten , January 30, 2020 at 02:57

Encryption is a very loose term nowadays. My device asks for my 'encryption code' meaning the pattern on the three by three dot image at login. Crapification of older complex terms is what passes for cleverness in this IT world.

Deb O'Nair , January 29, 2020 at 17:24

either way system time-stamps are a poor indicator as to the what and how's – I once changed a mainframe's system time (when you had to reboot the system to change the time) in order to run a successful April fools joke many years ago – I never got caught even though a competent system manager could have seen that an unscheduled reboot had occurred twice and deduced that the system clock was changed to create a file in the future and then rebooted to set the clock again correctly.

Sean_Lamb , January 29, 2020 at 17:29

Again, since the time would be that on Seth Rich's lap top, there is no reason to think it is wrong. In any case, Binney's argument rested on speed of transfer.

Wandering through sysadmin pranks from the early 80s has great nostalgia value, but little practical use for 2016

Deb O'Nair , January 29, 2020 at 17:49

"Again, since the time would be that on Seth Rich's lap top"

The point I have been trying to make is what you keep doing – attaching importance to system times and making a big assumption regarding fairly normal IT practices of data security and normal human behaviour, e.g. "could have targeted his lap-top when he was at lunch". Craig has done it here also, suggesting that different 'email systems' are being used because of differing time-stamp formats – which are a product of the mail reader software (MUA) and not the email server software (MTA).

Sean_Lamb , January 29, 2020 at 18:08

Most personal computers and laptops have the correct date – which is the only important variable here – namely the rapid transfer of files was only a few days before Seth Rich's death (and well after the DNC IT systems are believed to have been compromised).

Saying that most people's computers have the correct date on them and few ordinary computer users encrypt their hard drives don't seem like big assumptions to me.

My point was not suggest I can prove Guccifer 2.0's September 2016 data dump was taken from Seth Rich's computer. Rather it was to suggest it was an avenue worth exploring and that had Seth Rich come under suspicion by the DNC, there would have been opportunities for investigators (law enforcement or private) to dumped the contents of his laptop without him necessarily knowing about it.

I guess, you are of the other opinion; namely people hardly ever have the right date on their laptops, always encrypt their hard drives and virtually never let it out of their sight.

So we can agree to differ

Deb O'Nair , January 29, 2020 at 18:20

Agreeing to differ is not the issue. The 'avenue' which you wish to explore is a dead-end and if you looked at the sign at the beginning of the avenue, which I have now pointed out, you would have seen that it's a dead-end.

Chatting about linux commands and bootable USB drives may give your argument weight and an air of authority to technically non-savvy people but, however the DNC emails surfaced, whether then came from Seth Rich's laptop or he is just being setup as patsy to cover deep state actors behaviour, is a moot point (obviously not for Seth Rich if that is indeed why he died) as they have since been found all over the place, e.g. on Anthony Weiner's laptop.

Sean_Lamb , January 29, 2020 at 18:28

"Chatting about linux commands and bootable USB drives may give your argument weight and an air of authority to technically non-savvy people"

It wasn't my suggestion, it was William Binney of the NSA who can assure you is far more technically savvy than you or me.

If Seth Rich had come under suspicion within the DNC there would have been ample opportunities for them to have accessed his laptop in the way William Binney has suggested.

Hypothetically someone could have invited him in for a meeting, while someone went through his laptop.

We aren't talking about the DNC emails, we are talking about Guccifer 2.0's September 2016 data-dump. Probably some of the difficulty you are having is you don't really know much about the actual events in 2016.

Deb O'Nair , January 30, 2020 at 00:21

"it was William Binney of the NSA who can assure you is far more technically savvy than you or me."

Yes, I'm sure he can.

Buffalo_Ken , January 29, 2020 at 20:16

I believe there is MUCH more to this story of which I just picked a "random" link of the following Google search "microsoft security flaw nsa". Sorry ads are there but it was randomly chosen and I'm sticking with it.

https://www.wired.com/story/nsa-windows-10-vulnerability-disclosure/

You just can't believe one thing you read these days and that is why it ain't easy separating fact from fiction. With that said there is SO MUCH noW that is SO OBVIOUS this joke on us is either rapidly going to come to an end ..OR – can you spell oblivion? Seems simple to me.

By the way, have any of you noticed how much LESS helpful Google searches have become over the last few years. That ain't random either. The sad thing these days is so much information can only be processed by inference because there is essentially no such thing as journalism these days – at least from the so-called "professional journalist". Seems to me they are all OWNED.

Buffalo_Ken , January 29, 2020 at 21:00

By the way, the most crazy thing I read about this "security flaw" is MS had the audacity to say publicly that "nobody" had been compromised.

DO YOU THINK WE ARE STUPID?

Roberto , January 30, 2020 at 04:56

A certain former diplomat, who shall remain nameless, long ago insinuated that he passed the USB drive to Wikileaks.
Furthermore, Wikileaks' Assange clearly stated that the files did not come from a hack.

Sue , January 29, 2020 at 19:12

https://twitter.com/SharylAttkisson has a lawsuit against Rod Rosenstein.
You can read about it here https://davidharrisjr.com/lawrence-david/rosenstein-slammed-w-historic-lawsuit-over-stasi-style-spying-on-american-journalist-sharyl-attkisson-who-was-on-obama-admins-crimes/
Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee wrote to Bill Barr and Christopher Wray yesterday. Letter is here https://www.hsgac.senate.gov/media/majority-media/johnson-follows-up-on-unanswered-questions-from-reporters-lawsuit-regarding-obama-administrations-doj

https://twitter.com/Johnheretohelp/with_replies – This guy is the insider who worked under Rosenstein in Maryland. His story is remarkable.
One of his close friends was Molly MaCauley, a space economist specialising in satellites, who was murdered in 2017. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Molly_K._MaCauley

He knows ALL about the Seth Rich assassination.

Dungroanin , January 29, 2020 at 20:02

Does Craig know what has happened to the Durham investigation?

I keep asking. It's turning into the dog that didn't bark

bj , January 29, 2020 at 20:35

Barking dogs don't bite.

Buffalo_Ken , January 29, 2020 at 21:23

@bj

Oh yes the do. I can prove it from personal experience and what better proof is there then that bj?

Buffalo_Ken , January 29, 2020 at 21:30

@bj

Here to lighten the mood I'll tell you a personal story. I had this crazy dog (some thought he was a "Boykin"). Basically a chocolate cocker spaniel out of SC. Man that dog was crazy and his name was Chester. We all loved him because we chose him knowingly and he was part of our family.

One time Chester and me got into a bit of a spat. He barked but then he ran away and hid under the bush. I was not pleased with this behavior and I took the end of a broomstick and shoved towards him. He remained steadfast under the bush so I reached down there and he bit the shit out of my hand. Hurt me bad, but I pulled his ass out of there and let him have it! I didn't go to the hospital because I know how to take care of myself (hydrogen peroxide is critical after a serious deep down bit like this). I think he may have gotten to my tendons, but they have healed and just like both of my two big toes which I'm pretty sure have been broke (that is another story or two), my healing just made me stronger. Through it all my love Chester never wavered.

I'm not gonna tell anybody publicly how Chester died, but that Vet in Blacksburg VA (or what it Christiansburg) was not a good vet. We should have amputated off his leg and then Chester might possible be sitting next to me just now. Instead he is dead and I miss him.

Buffalo_Ken , January 29, 2020 at 21:33

Sorry for all the typos above. Figure it out yourselves.

Chester was a good dog even if he was bat shit crazy. I loved him and I miss him.

Robyn , January 29, 2020 at 23:20

The Durham investigation is still under way:

https://dbdailyupdate.com/index.php/2019/12/20/john-durham-is-closing-in-on-the-coup-cabal-and-the-new-york-times-is-panicking/

Dungroanin , January 29, 2020 at 20:13

Btw – i'm waiting for CM's reaction to the EU parliament singing Auld lang in response to the poxy fartage petty brexiteers. Does seem to imply an indy scotland would be welcome.

d w kemp , January 29, 2020 at 21:24

That was my first or maybe second thought. Still cannae wait for nicola to get her erse in gear in time i fear

LinuxNerd , January 29, 2020 at 22:40

As much as I respect William Binney and his "Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity" I have to say that their analysis of the DNC leak and their conclusion that the fast transfer rates indicates a local leak is nonsense. It perfectly possible and dare I say likely that a hacker looking to covertly exfiltrate data from a compromised network would first copy the files prior to compressing them with a utility such as tar. That would make the timestamps imply the fast transfer rate as is observed. Its also likely that this tar archive was then slowly exfiltrated over the course a few days so as not to flag up a highly unusual pattern of Gigabytes of data leaving the DNC network in a hurry. Regardless I actually think the offical story is BS and the leak probably was a local theft maybe even by Seth.

Buffalo_Ken , January 29, 2020 at 22:46

@LinuxNerd

Nice theory. You have yours and I have mine, but I ain't gonna tell. I ain't gonna tell not a one of you all.

J , January 29, 2020 at 23:19

You can precisely reproduce the metadata in the stolen files?

Deb O'Nair , January 30, 2020 at 00:36

The metadata contained in files are typically permissions, ownership and created/modified dates, all of which can be squashed by using a utility such as tar.

The only way to know how the data was extracted is to actually check the server logs and auditing system, which is the point I was trying to make earlier with Sean_Lamb- it is impossible to say, by looking at the files alone, how the files were copied, how long it took, who did it etc. etc.

Buffalo_Ken , January 30, 2020 at 00:53

Can someone explain this "tar" thing. Does that mean it is gunked up so that all the data is stuck together with no way to break it down piece by piece. I have a hunch that it can be broken down and further I have a lonely hunch that this is happening as we speak. I'll keep the rest of my hunches to myself – thank-you. Dignity is important to me but not as important as Justice and Liberty and with no ill will meant, somebody here tried to tell me the order of peace and harmony and all that fluff and I think they were a bit off with their premise, but I love them still because there is really no way to understand what someone is trying to communicate unless we are face-to-face. Sitting around at the table is the best and that is what I want.

So, one last goofy thing to throw out there that I have published elsewhere. Come to my place and lets talk directly face-to-face if we really want to get to know each other. But if you come uninvited be prepared for my defense. If you come with bad intent later on you will regret it assuming you are still alive and capable of thinking. If you cause harm of innocence then all I can say is be prepared for justified retribution. It is swift and fearsome and ruthless and efficient because it is justified. Simple.

Sheldon , January 29, 2020 at 23:35

Aaron Rich has participated in a grand jury investigating the murder of his brother Seth. If it was just a botched robbery then why is there a grand jury?

https://www.courthousenews.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/aaron-rich-DC-suit.pdf

Buffalo_Ken , January 30, 2020 at 00:20

@Sheldon

Nice very nice. I will read the whole legal statement when I get around to it because I think it is important and thank-you for the link.

You know when the Vikings were raping and pillaging as they were so competent in this behavior, there weren't all the laws and legal BS that we now have, but probably that is a good thing. One thing leads to another make the inferences you can, but don't consider them gospel because we should all know by now – if you weren't there when it happened, then how can you really know. Can't go back in time but we can imagine just a bit into the future and if we get together one community at a time then we can imagine further and let me tell you – there is POWER in that.

LinuxNerd , January 30, 2020 at 00:55

Here is the quote Sheldon is alluding to. This is what Aaron's lawyers say in a defamation lawsuit against various folks:

"Since the day he learned that he had lost his only sibling, Aaron has worked 4.diligently to assist law enforcement to bring Seth's murderer to justice. For well over a year, Aaron has devoted countless hours assisting state and federal law enforcement officials investigating the murder. He has provided law enforcement officials with access to all of Seth's property, followed up regularly with the officials regarding their investigation, and voluntarily testified under oath as a witness before a grand jury convened to investigate Seth's murder."
-- https://www.courthousenews.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/aaron-rich-DC-suit.pdf

Anyone here know why a grand jury would be convened to investigate Seth's murder?

Daniel , January 30, 2020 at 01:03

In America, it has now become routine for Federal officials to lie to the courts.
The most notable case . The DEA and the NSA had a co-operation to monitor drug traffickers. But, later, when it came time to go to court, Federal prosecutors knowingly filed false documents with the court claiming that the information came from elsewhere. IIRC, they claimed "anonymous informants". AFAIK, no action has ever been taken against these lawyers and legal representatives of the US government for deliberately lying to the courts.
There are numerous other cases. About once a generation the FBI Crime Lab gets busted and has to admit that it falsifies reports on evidence. That's happened enough in my lifetime that I've lost count of how many times.
This is the court system and government which is supposed to give Julian Assange a fair trial. Given that America imprisons more of its own people than anyone else in the world, there are a lot of Americans that would laugh at the idea of a fair trial in America.

Buffalo_Ken , January 30, 2020 at 02:42

Julian Assange should be freed to do as he wants and I'm watching to see what happens and that will inform my next move. Not kidding around and all you pompous MF fools better watch out because it could happen to you. It could happen in a heartbeat.

Free the man for fucks sake all he has done is tried to better facilitate communication and to whom is that a crime? The answer to that is telling.

Now, for me, nothing but a peasant trying to get by in the crazy world of maybe too much communication (Facebook should be split up) let me say, it is time for me to go bed.

Peace to all who want peace. For the rest of you you don't want it: fuck off. You are going to get what you deserve. Simple.

uncle tungsten , January 30, 2020 at 01:15

Well said Craig, every bloody sentence. As for wikipedia (spit) we need a site called OffWikipedia or some such. In the same vein as OffGuardian who perform a great service to thinkers.

Buffalo_Ken , January 30, 2020 at 01:30

uncle tungsten – can you elaborate on your troubles with wikipedia. Are you suggesting it is causing trouble? If so, explain yourself. If not, then what are you implying. I think I will call your bluff. I think on first reading that you are full of shi*. Explain yourself and prove me wrong if you don't mind. If don't speak up then I know about you that you do about me.

Buffalo_Ken , January 30, 2020 at 01:42

You know what uncle tungsten – disregarding the typos in my response I think you get the gist of what I was saying and honestly buddy if you don't care for Wikipedia then don't go there. But don't disparage one of the few places left to get good information.

Oh and by the way you old fart. I think you have a lot to learn and Wikipedia or somewhere else might help you with that or are you nothing but an old fart stuck in the past? That is a fair question.

Buffalo_Ken , January 30, 2020 at 02:02

Holy Moly I'm talking more than I should but lucky for me I'm nothing but a peasant.

So to keep it simple I'm thinking there are some leaders out there who are wondering if they might be fixing to suffer the same fate as that Iranian General who was taken out with a drone (along with his comrades most of whom must of been innocent). Anyhow, you are damn straight, if it could happen to him then obviously it could happen to you. How does this make you feel? Do you feel insecure? In general, I would say you get what you deserve and more than likely you deserve your insecurities because they must be coming out of your conscience. Merit is what matters and so don't try to pass on your leadership to a son or daughter because odds are they have less merit than you do.

Me – I am nothing but a peasant and for that I feel like I am blessed. Better to be a peasant than to be a target.

What do you all think – is the cliff nearby?

Buffalo_Ken , January 30, 2020 at 02:25

I said there were leaders from two countries who are the "top" psychopath ones as far as I can tell. I'd appreciate if someone could convince me otherwise and prove me wrong. Otherwise, these fuckers are gonna get what they deserve. In memory of that fine man killed in the Turkish embassy and even more in recognition of that fine Iranian General just trying to facilitate peace. He didn't deserve what he got, but he got it nonetheless.

Justified Retribution. This ain't no game.

Mosaic , January 30, 2020 at 03:00

"Holy Moly I'm talking more than I should"

You sure are, and you are an effing bore.
Find something else to do.

Buffalo_Ken , January 30, 2020 at 03:10

@Mosaic

Sad to say this cause I like what you call yourself, but to keep it simple your comment has been noted. Maybe you need to look in the mirror you puppet.

Now it truly is time to go to bed. We all could use some rest (I think). That is the only good thing about being in a prison. Plenty of rest to be had.

[Jan 30, 2020] FBI Lied to a Federal Court Regarding Seth Rich by Larry C Johnson - Sic Semper Tyrannis

Jan 30, 2020 | turcopolier.typepad.com

FBI Lied to a Federal Court Regarding Seth Rich by Larry C Johnson Larry Johnson-5x7

Thanks to Judicial Watch, a new batch of emails have surfaced that put the FBI in a whole lot of trouble with at least two Federal Judges. Attorney Ty Clevenger made repeated FOIA requests to the FBI for all emails and communications dealing with Seth Rich and his murder. The FBI denied they had any such communications. Whoops! There are now five emails and one text message that show that denial is not true. Let's dig into the details.

The FBI, in the person of David Hardy, affirmed in an affidavit that there were no responsive records. Hardy is the Section Chief of the Record/Information Dissemination Section ("RIDS"), Information Management Division ("IMD"),1 Federal Bureau of Investigation ("FBI"), in Winchester, Virginia. Here are the relevant portions of his first affidavit:

On September 30, 2017, by electronic submission via the OIP online portal, Plaintiff submitted an administrative appeal of the FBI's September 19, 2017 determination. Specifically, Plaintiff alleged the FBI limited its search to the Central Records System("CRS") for main file records. Additionally, Plaintiff noted that any responsive records likely would be found in emails, hard copy documents, and other files in the FBI's Washington Field Office; therefore, the FBI should be directed to conduct a thorough search, to include emails and other records in the Washington Field Office. . . .

(9) By letter executed on November 9, 2017, OIP advised Plaintiff it affirmed the FBI's determination. OIP further advised Plaintiff that to the extent his request sought access to records that would either confirm or deny an individual's placement on any government watch list, the FBI properly refused to confirm or deny the existence of any such records because their existence is protected from disclosure pursuant to 5 U.S.C. § 552(b)(7)(E). . . .

(19) CRS Search and Results. In response to Plaintiff's request dated September 1, 2017, RIDS conducted an index search of the CRS for responsive main and reference file records employing the UNI application of ACS. The FBI searched the subject's name, "Seth Conrad Rich," in order to identify files responsive to Plaintiff's request and subject to the FOIA. The FBI's searches included a three-way phonetic breakdown5 of the subject's name. These searches
located no main or reference records responsive to Plaintiff's FOIA request.

(20) Subsequently, the FBI conducted additional searches of the CRS via the UNI application of ACS and a Sentinel index search for both main and reference file records. The FBI used the same search terms it used in its original searches as described supra. This new search also resulted in no main or reference file records being located responsive to Plaintiff's FOIA request. . . .

(25) The FBI conducted an adequate and reasonable search for records responsive to Plaintiffs FOIA request; however, no records were located. First given its comprehensive nature and scope, the CRS is the principle records system searched by RIDS, to locate information responsive to most FOIA/Privacy Act requests, as the CRS is where the FBI indexes information about individuals, organizations, and events for future retrieval. See , 14, supra. Second, the CRS is the FBI recordkeeping system where investigative records responsive to this request would reasonably be found. Given Plaintiffs request sought information about an individual subject, Seth Conrad Rich, who was murdered in the District of Columbia on or about July 10, 2016, such information would reasonably be expected to be located in the CRS via the index search methodology. Finally, the office likely to conduct or assist in such an investigation -- WFO -- confirmed that it did not open an investigation or provide investigative or technical assistance into the murder of Seth Conrad Rich, as the matter was under investigation by the MPD, who declined the FBI's assistance.

Pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1746, I declare under penalty of perjury that the foregoing is true and correct, and that ibits A - E attached hereto are true and correct copies.

Well, guess what? Just as Ty Clevenger anticipated, the relevant emails were in the Washington Field Office. To make matters worse, some of these emails were sent to FBI Headquarters. David Hardy either is incompetent or he has lied. There is no middle ground. In either case, his submission was not true.

Here are the emails (I transcribed them and put them in chronological order to facilitate your ability to read them and understand what is being communicated).

10:32 am -- Message sent from FBI's Washington Field Office Public Affairs officer to at least three other Washington Field Office FBI Agents. In addition, there are three other blacked out areas in the addressee field, which appear to be the names of persons who do not work at the Washington Field Office.

I hope you are well. I heard from the front office that you are covering for BLANK this week. Various news outlets are reporting today that Julian Assange suggested during an overseas interview that DNC Staffer, Seth Rich, was a Wikileaks source and may have been killed because he leaked the DNC e-mails to his organization, and that Wikileaks is offering $20,000 for information regarding the death of Seth Rich last month. Based on this news, we anticipate additional press coverage on this matter. I hear that you are in a class today; however, when you have a moment can you give me a call to discuss what involvement the FBI has in the investigation.

12:53 pm -- Message replying to the 10:32 am message, sent from FBI Washington Field Office with at least four other Washington Field Office FBI Agents addressed on the message. There also are two other blacked out addresses, which may indicate personnel not in the Washington Field Office.

Adding BLANK (a name to the addressee list). I am aware of this reporting from earlier this week, but not any involvement in any related case. BLANKED OUT.

12:54 pm -- Message sent from FBI Washington Field Office with at least four other Washington Field Office FBI Agents addressed on the message. There also are two other blacked out addresses, which may indicate personnel not in the Washington Field Office.

Adding BLANK for real. Stupid Samsung. (Apparently the author of this message failed in the preceding message.)

1:00 pm -- Message replying to the 12:54 pm message, sent from FBI Washington Field Office with five other Washington Field Office FBI Agents addressed on the message.

Hi. (THE REST OF THE MESSAGE IS BLANKED OUT.)

1:25 pm -- Message replying to the 1:00 pm message, sent from FBI Washington Field Office with five other Washington Field Office FBI Agents addressed on the message. Plus, two other BLANKED out addressees not identified.

Thanks BLANK will do.

7:09 pm -- Message from FBI Washington Field Office to Jonathan Moffat and Peter Strzok of the FBI's Criminal Division and two other BLANKED out addressees.

FYSA (For Your Situational Awareness). I squashed this with BLANK

7:49 pm Text message from Peter Strzok to Lisa Page forwarding her this email chain.

The initial response to the query from the Public Affairs Office of the Washington Field Office is telling. The Agent could have responded very simply--The FBI was not involved in any facet of the Seth Rich investigation. This was a local matter handled by the DC Police.

But that is not how the Agent responded. And then he took the step of adding in people at FBI Headquarters. How do we know this? The message from the Washington Field Office at 7:09 pm was sent to the Criminal Division to Agents Moffat and Strzok.

Ty Clevenger now has ample ammunition to return to court and insist that the FBI be required to identify all agents involved in these email chains and to discuss what they knew about the Seth Rich case. David Hardy declared under the penalty of perjury that there were no such emails. I doubt that the two judges involved in the relevant cases on this matter will be happy to learn that the FBI stonewalled a valid FOIA request and a

Stay tuned.

Below is the copy of the email chain. You need to read from bottom to top.

Seth Rich Email Chain Complete

Posted at 08:32 AM in Larry Johnson | Permalink

Reblog (0) Comments Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post. Sid Finster I will be shocked if the judge does anything about it beyond a slap on the wrist an an admonition not to get caught again.

Posted by: Sid Finster | 29 January 2020 at 10:07 AM Vig Explain, would you? Maybe I didn't read carefully enough.

Strictly it had to be handled by DC police, nevertheless the FBI was made aware of it-- and should have taken over at that point?--and somewhere up the chronology ladder Peter Strzok got envolved, not quite the way he should have though, instead he only forwarded the latest mail to his "interior lover". Suggesting??? Peter Strzok as man in charge my have stopped the FBI from taking over?

Posted by: Vig | 29 January 2020 at 12:18 PM james thanks larry.. what are the chances seth rich was an intel asset?

Posted by: james | 29 January 2020 at 12:23 PM Larry Johnson Very unlikely that he was an intel asset.

Posted by: Larry Johnson | 29 January 2020 at 12:38 PM David Habakkuk Sid Finster,

I think it is premature to prejudge the question of how successful the FBI will be in heading off the attempts of Ty Clevenger and Ed Butowsky to penetrate the wall of silence which has been erected around the involvement of that organisation in covering up the truth about Seth Rich's murder, and his involvement in leaking the materials from the DNC published by 'WikiLeaks.'

It is also material here that other parts of the cover-up may be running into trouble.

Further indications that contingency plans to use Steele as a 'patsy' were made early on, and are now being implemented, come in an extraordinary article published in the latest edition of the 'Sunday Times' by the paper's Political Editor, Tim Shipman.

Important parts of this were reproduced in a piece by Daniel Chaitin in the 'Washington Examiner', headlined 'Top British spy report: "Strong possibility' that anti-Trump dossier was completely fabricated", which links to the original article.

(See https://www.washingtonexaminer.com/news/top-british-spy-report-strong-possibility-that-anti-trump-dossier-was-completely-fabricated .)

The original is, unfortunately, behind a paywall – but can be obtained if one is prepared to take the trouble to sign up for the free allowance allowed by the papers.

In fact, much more interesting than the fact that a well-known British writer about spies, Rupert Allason, aka 'Nigel West', who is clearly a conduit for elements in our security services, has been brought in in support of the strategy of making Steele the 'patsy', are paragraphs that make a claim which Chaitin does not appear to notice. These read:

'In November (2016 – DH], the FBI began checking out Steele and his sources. The inspector- general found that former colleagues described Steele as demonstrating "poor judgment" by "pursuing people with political risk but no intel value".

'More worryingly, they worked out that most of Steele's information came from a "primary sub-source", identified by American media as a Belarus-born businessman, Sergei Millian. The FBI interviewed Millian three times, in January, March and May 2017.

'He told the FBI that he was an unwitting source and much of what he had told Steele was "just talk", "word of mouth and hearsay" or conversations "had with friends over beers". The claims about Trump cavorting with prostitutes at the Ritz-Carlton were "rumour and speculation" or said "in jest". The inspector- general's report says Millian "made statements indicating that Steele misstated or exaggerated" what he had told him and that his reports were far more "conclusive" than was justified.'

As it happens, while I have seen Millian referred to as a source for the dossier attributed to Steele, I have – so far at least – not seen him identified with the supposed 'Primary Sub-source.'

A critical question is whether the 'Sunday Times' is right in claiming that the person whom the FBI are reported by Inspector-General Horowitz as interviewing in January, March and May 2017, in a version which that figure's report accepts, was in fact Millian.

What Glenn Simpson and Peter Fritsch have to say in the apologia they published last November under the title 'Crime in Progress', following their attempt to claim that there was serious sourcing for the 'golden showers' claim, seems worth bringing into the picture:

'Steele said that one of his collectors was among the finest he had ever worked with, an individual known to U.S. intelligence and law enforcement. Neither Simpson nor Fritsch was told the name of this source, nor the source's precise whereabouts, but Steele shared enough about the person's background and access that they believed the information they planned to pass along was credible.'

The suggestion seems clear that this was the 'Primary Sub-source.'

Anyone who did the most basic research into Millian would very rapidly realise that the notion that he could have the kind of 'background and access' making the claims made in the dossier attributed to Steele 'credible' was laughable.

A rather obvious hypothesis, I think, was that the 'Primary Sub-source' was actually – to hark back to the title of a book and film about a classic British disinformation operation – 'The Man Who Never Was.'

The actual truth, I think, is likely to have been well-summarised by Lee Smith in the opening paragraphs of his review of the Simpson/Fritsch book, which is headlined 'A crime still in progress':

'Crime in Progress is, inadvertently, the cruelest book ever written about the American media. Its authors, Glenn Simpson and Peter Fritsch, are the two former Wall Street Journal reporters who founded the DC-based consultancy Fusion GPS. In 2016, the Hillary Clinton campaign paid them to use their former media colleagues to push a conspiracy theory smearing her Republican opponent, Donald Trump. The crime is still in progress.

'To help top-notch journalists market the fantasy that one of the world's most familiar faces was a secret Russian spy, Fusion GPS co-ordinated with the FBI to forge a series of "intelligence reports". They attributed these lurid memos to a down-on-his-luck Brit, a former spy named Christopher Steele.'

(See https://spectator.us/crime-progress-russiagate-whistleblowers/ )

My only reservation about this is that I do not think that Steele was 'down-on-his-luck', until he found that his partners in the 'crime still in progress' were planning to wriggle out of their own responsibility by making him the 'patsy', or 'fall guy.'

To give intelligence credibility to a farrago which, as Smith suggests, is likely to have been cooked up in Fusion GPS, with the assistance of criminal elements in the U.S. law enforcement and intelligence apparatus, it was helpful to bring in an old confederate of both, Steele.

(One could also then appeal to that curious snobbery that often makes Americans take seriously precisely the kind of 'Brit' to whom they should give a very wide berth!)

This, ironically, created a situation where those criminal elements could then suggest that their only fault was in being credulous about claims made by a British intelligence officer whom it was suggested past experience gave them reason to trust.

A natural way of developing this strategy would be to find someone like Millian, and use him to buttress the central claims that the dossier 1. was actually produced by Steele, and 2. that it had actual sources, rather than being largely fabricated. (As so often, the W.C. Fields principle applies: 'Never give a sucker an even break.')

It seems clear that Horowitz has been prepared to go along with this strategy, and that a very large number of 'suckers' among those on the other side of the fence from Simpson and Fritsch have fallen for it, hook, line and sinker. (It might be invidious to name names.)

The likely reason why all this happened, of course, is that a succession of events – the discovery that material from the DNC had been leaked and was going to be published by 'WikiLeaks', the identification of Seth Rich as the figure responsible, and then his murder – produced an urgent need for a cover-up.

Inevitably, given the shortage of time, this was imperfect, and gave hostages to fortune.

It is clear that Clevenger and Butowsky have, and probably will continue to have, difficulties in getting judges to follow the evidence where it leads.

However, the former is a first-class 'ferret', and I think it is premature to rule out the possibility that some of the people who are adjudicating these cases may decide that they do not want to continue to cover up a 'crime still in progress.'

As it happens, Clevenger has written to John Durham, Richard Donague, and also Michael Horowitz, announcing that he wishes to file a criminal complaint in relation to the materials which Larry has discussed.

(An account with relevant links is given in a new post entitled 'We now have unequivocal proof that the FBI is hiding records about Seth Rich' on Clevenger's 'Lawflog' blog, subtitled 'Because some people just need a good flogging.'

See http://lawflog.com/?p=2282 .)

I would strongly recommend anyone seriously interested in seeing the truth about these matters exposed, and the conspiracy against the Constitution defeated, to sign up for alerts from Clevenger's blog.

Posted by: David Habakkuk | 29 January 2020 at 12:51 PM scott s. In fairness to the FBI, they didn't say there were no emails, they said they used a search of CRS and that didn't identify any emails. It isn't clear to me from what was provided in this post whether the search would have included records from the WFO.

Posted by: scott s. | 29 January 2020 at 12:54 PM David Habakkuk Larry and Pat,

I posted quite a long response to 'Sid Finster', which has gone into spam.

Have been reading both the Simpson/Fritsch apologia, and also the book-length version of Heidi Blake's attempt at 'escapology' on behalf of 'BuzzFeed.'

Both drive a point home: one simply cannot take on trust anything these people say.

This also includes material like the Bruce Ohr 302s. I know think that these were crafted, between him, Pientka, Strzok et al, as part of contingency plans to make Steele the 'patsy' if the attempt to 'escalate' with the conspiracy against the Trump failed.

Posted by: David Habakkuk | 29 January 2020 at 01:00 PM Diana Croissant The sorry fact is this: Out here in places like my town in flyover country, I could mention Seth Rich and no one would have the slightest idea who he was and why he should get justice--or at least that the truth about his life and death should be told.

Does he have family fighting for the truth about his death? Are there investigative reporters on the story?

Posted by: Diana Croissant | 29 January 2020 at 05:41 PM turcopolier Diana Croissant

Should we be silent about this?

Posted by: turcopolier | 29 January 2020 at 05:45 PM oldman22 David H et al
Re Christoper Steele, allow me to refresh your recollection with this piece from 3 years ago by John Helmer (too much detail to quote or attempt to summarize).
http://johnhelmer.net/when-going-to-bed-with-dogs-is-news-getting-up-with-fleas-is-a-scoop-heres-the-one-about-trumps-bed-putins-bed/print/

Posted by: oldman22 | 29 January 2020 at 10:56 PM English Outsider
Oldman22 -The article states - "Steele, who quit MI6 in 2009, never told his former bosses, what he was up to."

I believe this judgement would now be revised, if one can trust newspaper articles detailing an earlier meeting with Sir Richard Dearlove that have since come out.

Posted by: English Outsider | 30 January 2020 at 05:25 AM Sid Finster @David Habbakuk: I hope that you are right.


However, I have a little experience with how these things go down in the real world. I genuinely hope that this experience will prove misleading.

Posted by: Sid Finster | 30 January 2020 at 10:42 AM Flavius The omni-present Strzok/Page.
The DNC computer hack strikes me as another faux investigation identical in that regard to the Clinton e-mail investigation - half measures abounding. The question is why? The brief e-mail exchange between WFO and FBIHQ makes it perfectly clear that if the field investigators had not already taken an interest on following up on Rich as an obvious lead they certainly should have. It appears to me that they had not since the initial inquiry came down from the Public Affairs Office and seems somewhat less than urgent.
My question is why wasn't the FBI all over this obvious lead if they wanted to get to the actual bottom of the DNC hack?

Posted by: Flavius | 30 January 2020 at 11:40 AM

[Jan 28, 2020] Previously considered lost Seth Rich-related emails have been uncovered. These emails weren't just from anybody. These emails were between FBI lovebirds Peter Strzok and Lisa Page, the two most corrupt individuals involved in the Russia Collusion Hoax

Jan 28, 2020 | www.zerohedge.com

hooligan2009 , 39 seconds ago link

remember seth rich!

https://www.thegatewaypundit.com/2020/01/breaking-exclusive-christopher-wrays-fbi-caught-in-another-lie-and-cover-up-fbi-emails-on-seth-rich-uncovered/

"Today, January 27, 2020, we have a stunning update ==>>

After previously claiming no FBI records could be found related to Seth Rich, emails have been uncovered. These emails weren't just from anybody. These emails were between FBI lovebirds Peter Strzok and Lisa Page, the two most corrupt individuals involved in the Russia Collusion Hoax.

In a set of emails released by Judicial Watch on January 22, 2020, provided by a FOIA request on Peter Strzok and Lisa Page, two pages on emails refer to Seth Rich:"

https://www.judicialwatch.org/wp-content/uploads/2020/01/JW-v-DOJ-Strzok-Page-Prod-16-00154.pdf

[Jan 27, 2020] The death of the "Vital Center", an epitaph

Jan 27, 2020 | www.moonofalabama.org

vk , Jan 26 2020 15:39 utc | 1

The death of the "Vital Center", an epitaph:

Why red and blue America can't hear each other anymore - by Francis Fukuyama

Trailer Trash , Jan 26 2020 16:58 utc | 16

>by Francis Fukuyama

Not sure why anyone would waste their time reading the nitwit who proclaimed "The End of History" to loud applause from the establishment pseudo-intellectuals. About as useful as reading Thomas Friedman.

[Jan 23, 2020] An incredible level of naivety of people who still think that a single individual, or even two, can change the direction of murderous US policies that are widely supported throughout the bureaucracy?

Highly recommended!
The deep state clearly is running the show (with some people unexpected imput -- see Trump ;-)
Elections now serve mainly for the legitimizing of the deep state rule; election of a particular individual can change little, although there is some space of change due to the power of executive branch. If the individual stray too much form the elite "forign policy consensus" he ether will be JFKed or Russiagated (with the Special Prosecutor as the fist act and impeachment as the second act of the same Russiagate drama)
But a talented (or reckless) individual can speed up some process that are already under way. For example, Trump managed to speed up the process of destruction of the USA-centered neoliberal empire considerably. Especially by launching the trade war with China. He also managed to discredit the USA foreign policy as no other president before him. Even Bush II.
Jan 23, 2020 | www.moonofalabama.org
Trailer Trash , Jan 23 2020 18:30 utc | 44
>This is the most critical U.S. election in our lifetime
> Posted by: Circe | Jan 23 2020 17:46 utc | 36

Hmmm, I've been hearing the same siren song every four years for the past fifty. How is it that people still think that a single individual, or even two, can change the direction of murderous US policies that are widely supported throughout the bureaucracy?

Bureaucracies are reactionary and conservative by nature, so any new and more repressive policy Trumpy wants is readily adapted, as shown by the continuing barbarity of ICE and the growth of prisons and refugee concentration camps. Policies that go against the grain are easily shrugged off and ignored using time-tested passive-aggressive tactics.

One of Trump's insurmountable problems is that he has no loyal organization behind him whose members he can appoint throughout the massive Federal bureaucracy. Any Dummycrat whose name is not "Biden" has the same problem. Without a real mass-movement political party to pressure reluctant bureaucrats, no politician of any name or stripe will ever substantially change the direction of US policy.

But the last thing Dummycrats want is a real mass movement, because they might not be able to control it. Instead Uncle Sam will keep heading towards the cliff, which may be coming into view...


Per/Norway , Jan 23 2020 19:31 utc | 62

The amount of TINA worshipers and status quo guerillas is starting to depress me.
HOW IS IT POSSIBLE to believe A politician will/can change anything and give your consent to war criminals and traitors?
NO person(s) WILL EVER get to the top in imperial/vassal state politics without being on the rentier class side, the cognitive dissonans in voting for known liars, war criminals and traitors would kill me or fry my brain. TINA is a lie and "she" is a real bitch that deserves to be thrown on the dump off history, YOUR vote is YOUR consent to murder, theft and treason.
DONT be a rentier class enabler STOP voting and start making your local communities better and independent instead.

Per
Norway

Piotr Berman , Jan 23 2020 20:19 utc | 82
The amount of TINA worshipers and status quo guerillas is starting to depress me. <- Norway

Of course, There Is Another Way, for example, kvetching. We can boldly show that we are upset, and pessimistic. One upset pessimists reach critical mass we will think about some actions.

But being upset and pessimistic does fully justify inactivity. In particular, given the nature of social interaction networks, with spokes and hubs, dominating the network requires the control of relatively few nodes. The nature of democracy always allows for leverage takeover, starting from dominating within small to the entire nation in few steps. As it was nicely explained by Prof. Overton, there is a window of positions that the vast majority regards as reasonable, non-radical etc. One reason that powers to be invest so much energy vilifying dissenters, Russian assets of late, is to keep them outside the Overton window.

Having a candidate elected that the curators of Overton window hate definitely shakes the situation with the potential of shifting the window. There were some positive symptoms after Trump was elected, but negatives prevail. "Why not we just kill him" idea entered the window, together with "we took their oil because we have guts and common sense".

From that point of view, visibility of Tulsi and election of Sanders will solve some problems but most of all, it will make big changes in Overton window.

[Jan 23, 2020] Incredible level of naivety of people who still think that a single individual, or even two, can change the direction of murderous US policies that are widely supported throughout the bureaucracy?

Elections now serve mainly the legitimizing of the deep state rule function; election of a partuclar induvudual can change little, althouth there is some space of change due to the power of executive branch.
Jan 23, 2020 | www.moonofalabama.org
Trailer Trash , Jan 23 2020 18:30 utc | 44

For example, Trump managed to speed up the process od destruction of the USA-centered neoliberal empire considerably. Especially by lauching the trade war with China. He also managed to discredit the USA foreign policy as no other president before him. Even Bush II.

>This is the most critical U.S. election in our lifetime
> Posted by: Circe | Jan 23 2020 17:46 utc | 36

Hmmm, I've been hearing the same siren song every four years for the past fifty. How is it that people still think that a single individual, or even two, can change the direction of murderous US policies that are widely supported throughout the bureaucracy?

Bureaucracies are reactionary and conservative by nature, so any new and more repressive policy Trumpy wants is readily adapted, as shown by the continuing barbarity of ICE and the growth of prisons and refugee concentration camps. Policies that go against the grain are easily shrugged off and ignored using time-tested passive-aggressive tactics.

One of Trump's insurmountable problems is that he has no loyal organization behind him whose members he can appoint throughout the massive Federal bureaucracy. Any Dummycrat whose name is not "Biden" has the same problem. Without a real mass-movement political party to pressure reluctant bureaucrats, no politician of any name or stripe will ever substantially change the direction of US policy.

But the last thing Dummycrats want is a real mass movement, because they might not be able to control it. Instead Uncle Sam will keep heading towards the cliff, which may be coming into view...

[Jan 23, 2020] American Collapse by Daniel Lazare

Jan 01, 2020 | www.strategic-culture.org
© Photo: Wikipedia In order to understand the great impeachment charade, it's important to keep three facts about the strange bird known as the United States uppermost in mind.

The first is that the U.S. is the ultimate law-based society, one whose structure derives entirely from a single four-thousand-word document created in 1787. The second is that while Americans think of the Constitution as the greatest plan of government known to man, it's actually the opposite: a grotesque pre-modern relic that grows more unrepresentative and unresponsive with each passing year. A pro-rural Electoral College that has overridden the popular vote in two of the last five presidential elections; a lopsided Senate that allows the majority in ten urban states to be outvoted four-to-one by the minority in the other forty; lifetime Supreme Court justices who can veto any law at variance with an ancient constitution that only they understand – it's a broken-down old rattletrap in need of a top-to-bottom overhaul. Yet it's so thoroughly frozen that structural reform is all but unthinkable.

The third thing to keep in mind is that as the constitutional system grows more and more undemocratic, the two-party system that grew out of it in the nineteenth century grows more undemocratic as well. The result is a bipartisan race to the right. Sometimes, the Republicans seem to be in the lead as Trump imprisons thousands of immigrants fleeing murderous conditions in Central America that the U.S. war on drugs helped create. Other times it's the Democrats as they beat the drums for imperialist war against Russia.

Take all these factors – xenophobia, mindless obeisance to ancient law, a president imposed against the popular will, etc. – mix thoroughly, place in a super-hot oven due to a growing imperial crisis, and impeachment is what pops out. The process itself is very old, a by-product of fourteenth-century Anglo-Norman law. (Impeachment derives from the Old French empeechier, meaning to ensnare or entrap.) The British abandoned it in the late eighteenth century when Edmund Burke wasted seven years impeaching an Indian colonial governor named Warren Hastings on grounds of corruption. (The House of Lords finally acquitted him in 1795). But then the Americans took it up and now, two centuries later, are immersed in the same brainless exercise.

The results were all too evident in mid-December when one Democrat after another took to the House floor to denounced Donald Trump for violating the ancient constitution by withholding lethal military aid from the neo-Nazis of the Ukraine's Azov Battalion.

"We used to stand up to Putin and Russia – I know the party of Ronald Reagan used to," declared Adam Schiff, the Democratic point man on impeachment, his voice quivering with emotion. The fight to defend the Ukraine is "about more than Ukraine. It's about us. It's about our national security. Their fight is our fight. Their defense is our defense . And when the President sacrifices our interests, our national security for his election, he is sacrificing our country for his personal gain."

This was the Democratic line in a nutshell. In order to safeguard the ancient republic at home, the U.S. must pay foreign satraps to defend its imperial interests abroad. Since no patriotic American could possibly disagree, any and all problems must stem from meddling by the evil dictator Vladimir Putin and his traitorous puppet in the Oval Office. Americans must therefore fulfill the ancient law by impeaching him just as the "founding fathers" would have wanted. Only then will peace and freedom return to the land of the free and the home of the brave.

It's all quite ridiculous, but what's even more bonkers is that millions of Americans think it's true. Trump is meanwhile in his element. Now that Democrats have voted to impeach him in the House, he'd like nothing more than a lengthy trial in the Senate because (a) acquittal in the upper house is a certainty and (b) it will allow the Republican majority to put the torturers to the rack by subpoenaing everyone from Joe and Hunter Biden to Adam Schiff himself and declaring them in contempt of Congress if they refuse to testify. Senator Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has described an all-out Senate war as "mutual assured destruction," and he's right since, once unleashed, the ancient constitutional machinery will grind everything to dust in its path.

American politics will grow only more farcical. If Putin looms larger and larger on the world stage; if "the moment has come," as the Times Literary Supplement recently announced , "for even the most hardened skeptics to admit that he is one of the most successful world leaders of our era"; if the U.S. at the same time staggers from one imperial disaster to another even while descending into civil war – then it's not because the Russian leader is particularly clever, but because the U.S. is locked in an ancient mindset that is increasingly divorced from reality. It's lost in a constitutional labyrinth of its own making, and impeachment is leading it deeper and deeper into the maze.

[Jan 22, 2020] Tulsi Gabbard Sues Hillary Clinton Over 'Russian Asset' Remark

Jan 22, 2020 | www.zerohedge.com

Rep. Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI) has filed a lawsuit against Hillary Clinton, accusing the former Secretary of State of defamation for remarks characterizing the Democratic presidential candidate as a Russian asset .

Filed on Wednesday in the US District Court for the Southern District of New York, Gabbard's attorneys allege that Clinton "smeared" Gabbard's "political and personal reputation," according to The Hill .

Tulsi Gabbard is suing Hillary Clinton and the first page of the filing is WILD AF pic.twitter.com/DXHLPfy016

-- Alec Sears (@alec_sears) January 22, 2020

"Tulsi Gabbard is a loyal American civil servant who has also dedicated her life to protecting the safety of all Americans," said Gabbard's attorney Brian Dunne in a statement.

"Rep. Gabbard's presidential campaign continues to gain momentum, but she has seen her political and personal reputation smeared and her candidacy intentionally damaged by Clinton's malicious and demonstrably false remarks."

In a podcast released in October, Clinton said she thought Republicans were "grooming" a Democratic presidential candidate for a third-party bid. She also described the candidate as a favorite of the Russians.

Clinton did not name the candidate but it was clear she was speaking about Gabbard.

"They're also going to do third party. I'm not making any predictions, but I think they've got their eye on somebody who's currently in the Democratic primary and are grooming her to be the third-party candidate ," Clinton said.

" She's the favorite of the Russians, they have a bunch of sites and bots and other ways of supporting her so far , and that's assuming Jill Stein will give it up, which she might not, because she's also a Russian asset. Yeah, she's a Russian asset, I mean totally. They know they can't win without a third party candidate," Clinton said. - The Hill

Read the filing below:


GotAFriendInBen , 1 hour ago link

Go Gabby Go!!

Smack that smirk off that face

Ulna P Radius , 2 hours ago link

I love Tulsi. She's done more to attack the Democrat globalist neo-Con scumbags than Trump and the GoP put together. What a hero.

Maxamillia , 2 hours ago link

Best Wishes. Tulsi. Better Hope You Draw A Sympathetic Judge...

This Black Witch Hillary R Clinton... Has Been Under Satan So Long, His Radar Has Nearly Made Her Untouchable..

Except When It Comes To The Majority of American Voters...

[Jan 22, 2020] Who is a real "Russian asset" is an on-trivial question ;-)

Jan 22, 2020 | www.zerohedge.com

pparalegal , 1 hour ago link

Stay out of Arkansas.

Best President Ever , 2 hours ago link

Nobody likes Hillary even liberals like myself won't vote for her and that is why Trump won. She is the Russian asset.

RG_Canuck , 1 hour ago link

Please don't insult the Russians like that.

[Jan 21, 2020] The Revelations of WikiLeaks: No. 6 -- US Diplomatic Cables Spark 'Arab Spring,' Expose Spying at UN Elsewhere

Notable quotes:
"... Today we resume our series ..."
"... with little more than a month before the extradition hearing for imprisoned ..."
"... publisher Julian Assange begins. This is the sixth in a series that is looking back on the major works of the publication that has altered the world since its founding in 2006. The series is an effort to counter mainstream media coverage, which is ignoring ..."
"... work, and is instead focusing on Julian Assange's personality. It is ..."
"... uncovering of governments' crimes and corruption that set the U.S. after Assange, ultimately leading to his arrest on April 11 last year and indictment under the U.S. Espionage Act. ..."
"... Special to Consortium News ..."
"... Der Spiegel ..."
"... to the Winter Fund Drive. ..."
"... World Socialist Website ..."
"... Foreign Policy ..."
"... The Guardian ..."
"... The New York Times ..."
"... The Green Left ..."
"... The Green Left Weekly ..."
"... The Guardian ..."
"... CORRECTION: CableDrum is an independent Twitter feed and is not associated with ..."
"... as was incorrectly reported here. ..."
Jan 21, 2020 | consortiumnews.com

January 14, 2020 • 7 Comments

WikiLeaks ' publication of "Cablegate" in late 2010 dwarfed previous releases in both size and impact and helped cause what one news outlet called a political meltdown for United States foreign policy.

Today we resume our series The Revelations of WikiLeaks with little more than a month before the extradition hearing for imprisoned WikiLeaks publisher Julian Assange begins. This is the sixth in a series that is looking back on the major works of the publication that has altered the world since its founding in 2006. The series is an effort to counter mainstream media coverage, which is ignoring WikiLeaks' work, and is instead focusing on Julian Assange's personality. It is WikiLeaks' uncovering of governments' crimes and corruption that set the U.S. after Assange, ultimately leading to his arrest on April 11 last year and indictment under the U.S. Espionage Act.

'A Political Meltdown for US Foreign Policy'

By Elizabeth Vos
Special to Consortium News

O f all WikiLeaks' releases, probably the most globally significant have been the more than a quarter of a million U.S. State Department diplomatic cables leaked in 2010, the publication of which helped spark a revolt in Tunisia that spread into the so-called Arab Spring, revealed Saudi intentions towards Iran and exposed spying on the UN secretary general and other diplomats.

The releases were surrounded by a significant controversy (to be covered in a separate installment of this series) alleging that WikiLeaks purposely endangered U.S. informants by deliberately revealing their names. That allegation formed a major part of the U.S. indictment on May 23 of WikiLeaks publisher Julian Assange under the Espionage Act, though revealing informants' names is not a crime, nor is there evidence that any of them were ever harmed.

WikiLeaks ' publication of "Cablegate," beginning on Nov. 28, 2010, dwarfed previous WikiLeaks releases, in both size and impact. The publication amounted to 251,287 leaked American diplomatic cables that, at the time of publication, Der Spiegel described as"no less than a political meltdown for United States foreign policy."

Cablegate revealed a previously unknown history of diplomatic relations between the United States and the rest of the world, and in doing so, exposed U.S. views of both allies and adversaries. As a result of such revelations, Cablegate's release was widely condemned by the U.S. political class and especially by then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.

The Twitter handle Cable Drum, called it,

" The largest set of confidential documents ever to be released into the public domain. The documents will give people around the world an unprecedented insight into U.S. Government foreign activities. The cables, which date from 1966 up until the end of February 2010, contain confidential communications between 274 embassies in countries throughout the world and the State Department in Washington DC. 15,652 of the cables are classified Secret."

Among the historic documents that were grouped with Cablegate in WikiLeaks ' Public Library of U.S. Diplomacy are 1.7 million that involve Henry Kissinger, national security adviser and secretary of state under President Richard Nixon; and 1.4 million related to the Jimmy Carter administration.

Der Spiegel reported that the majority were "composed by ambassadors, consuls or their staff. Most contain assessments of the political situation in the individual countries, interview protocols and background information about personnel decisions and events. In many cases, they also provide political and personal profiles of individual politicians and leaders."

Cablegate rounded out WikiLeaks' output in 2010, which had seen the explosive publication of previous leaks also from Army intelligence analyst Chelsea Manning including " Collateral Murder ," the " Afghan War Diaries " and " Iraq War Logs ," the subject of earlier installments in this series. As in the case of the two prior releases, WikiLeaks published Cablegate in partnerships with establishment media outlets.

The "Cablegate" archive was later integrated with the WikiLeaks Public Library of U.S. Diplomacy , which contains over 10 million documents.

Global U.S. Empire Revealed

The impact of "Cablegate" is impossible to fully encapsulate, and should be the subject of historical study for decades to come. In September 2015 Verso published " The WikiLeaks Files: The World According to U.S. Empire ," with a foreword by Assange. It is a compendium of chapters written by various regional experts and historians giving a broader and more in-depth geopolitical analysis of U.S. foreign policy as revealed by the cables.

"The internal communications of the US Department of State are the logistical by-product of its activities: their publication is the vivisection of a living empire, showing what substance flowed from which state organ and when. Only by approaching this corpus holistically – over and above the documentation of each individual abuse, each localized atrocity – does the true human cost of empire heave into view," Assange wrote in the foreword.

' WikiLeaks Revolt' in Tunisia

The release of "Cablegate" provided the spark that many argue heralded the Arab Spring, earning the late-November publication the moniker of the " WikiLeaks Winter ."

Eventually, many would also credit WikiLeaks' publication of the diplomatic cables with initiating a chain-reaction that spread from the Middle East ( specifically from Egypt) to the global Occupy Wall Street movement by late 2011.

The first of the Arab uprisings was Tunisia's 28-day so-called Jasmine Revolution, stretching from Dec. 17, 2010, to Jan. 14, 2011, described as the "first WikiLeaks revolution."

Cables published by WikiLeaks revealed the extent of the Tunisian ruling family's corruption, and were widely accessible in Tunisia thanks to the advent of social media platforms like Twitter. Then-President Zine El Abidine Ben Ali had been in power for over two decades at the time of the cables' publication.

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One State Department cable, labeled Secret , said:

"President Ben Ali's extended family is often cited as the nexus of Tunisian corruption. Often referred to as a quasi-mafia, an oblique mention of 'the Family' is enough to indicate which family you mean. Seemingly half of the Tunisian business community can claim a Ben Ali connection through marriage, and many of these relations are reported to have made the most of their lineage."

A June 2008 cable said: "Whether it's cash, services, land, property, or yes, even your yacht, President [Zine el Abidine] Ben Ali's family is rumored to covet it and reportedly gets what it wants."

Symbolic middle finger gesture representing the Tunisian Revolution and its influences in the Arab world. From left to right, fingers are painted as flags of Libya, Egypt, Tunisia, Sudan and Algeria. (Khalid from Doha, CC BY 2.0, Wikimedia Commons)

The cables revealed that Ben Ali's extended family controlled nearly the entire Tunisian economy, from banking to media to property development, while 30 percent of Tunisians were unemployed. They showed that state-owned property was expropriated to be passed on to private ownership by family members.

"Lax oversight makes the banking sector an excellent target of opportunity, with multiple stories of 'First Family' schemes," one cable read. ""With real estate development booming and land prices on the rise, owning property or land in the right location can either be a windfall or a one-way ticket to expropriation," said another.

The revolt was facilitated once the U.S. abandoned Ali. Counterpunch reported that: "The U.S. campaign of unwavering public support for President Ali led to a widespread belief among the Tunisian people that it would be very difficult to dislodge the autocratic regime from power. This view was shattered when leaked cables exposed the U.S. government's private assessment: that the U.S. would not support the regime in the event of a popular uprising."

The internet and large social media platforms played a crucial role in the spread of public awareness of the cables and their content amongst the Tunisian public. "Thousands of home-made videos of police repression and popular resistance have been posted on the web. The Tunisian people have used Facebook, Twitter and other social networking sites to organize and direct the mobilizations against the regime," the World Socialist Website wrote.

Foreign Policy magazine reported:

"WikiLeaks acted as a catalyst: both a trigger and a tool for political outcry. Which is probably the best compliment one could give the whistle-blower site." The magazine added: "The people of Tunisia shouldn't have had to wait for Wikileaks to learn that the U.S. saw their country just as they did. It's time that the gulf between what American diplomats know and what they say got smaller."

The Guardian published an account in January 2011 by a young Tunisian, Sami Ben Hassine, who wrote: "The internet is blocked, and censored pages are referred to as pages "not found" – as if they had never existed. And then, WikiLeaks reveals what everyone was whispering. And then, a young man [Mohamed Bouazizi] immolates himself. And then, 20 Tunisians are killed in one day. And for the first time, we see the opportunity to rebel, to take revenge on the 'royal' family who has taken everything, to overturn the established order that has accompanied our youth."

Protester in Tunis, Jan. 14, 2011, holding sign. Translation from French: "Ben Ali out." (Skotch 79, CC0, Wikimedia Commons)

On the first day of Chelsea Manning's pretrial in December 2011, Daniel Ellsberg told Democracy Now:

"The combination of the WikiLeaks and Bradley Manning exposures in Tunis and the exemplification of that by Mohamed Bouazizi led to the protests, the nonviolent protests, that drove Ben Ali out of power, our ally there who we supported up 'til that moment, and in turn sparked the uprising in Egypt, in Tahrir Square occupation, which immediately stimulated the Occupy Wall Street and the other occupations in the Middle East and elsewhere. I hope [Manning and Assange] will have the effect in liberating us from the lawlessness that we have seen and the corruption -- the corruption -- that we have seen in this country in the last 10 years and more, which has been no less than that of Tunis and Egypt."

Clinton Told US Diplomats to Spy at UN

The cables' revelation that the U.S. State Department under then-Secretary-of-State Clinton had demanded officials act as spies on officials at the United Nations -- including the Secretary General -- was particularly embarrassing for the United States.

El Pais summarized the bombshell: "The State Department sent officials of 38 embassies and diplomatic missions a detailed account of the personal and other information they must obtain about the United Nations, including its secretary general, and especially about officials and representatives linked to Sudan, Afghanistan, Somalia, Iran and North Korea.

El Pais continued: "Several dispatches, signed 'Clinton' and probably made by the office of Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton, contain precise instructions about the myriad of inquiries to be developed in conflict zones, in the world of deserters and asylum seekers, in the engine room of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, or about the United Kingdom, France, Germany, Russia and China to know their plans regarding the nuclear threat in Tehran."

Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton & UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon in 2012. (Foreign and Commonwealth Office/Flickr)

CNN described the information diplomats were ordered to gather: "In the July 2009 document, Clinton directs her envoys at the United Nations and embassies around the world to collect information ranging from basic biographical data on foreign diplomats to their frequent flyer and credit card numbers and even 'biometric information on ranking North Korean diplomats.' Typical biometric information can include fingerprints, signatures and iris recognition data."

Der Spiegel reported that Clinton justified the espionage orders by emphasizing that "a large share of the information that the US intelligence agencies works with comes from the reports put together by State Department staff around the world."

Der Spiegel added: "The US State Department also wanted to obtain information on the plans and intentions of UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon and his secretariat relating to issues like Iran, according to the detailed wish list in the directive. The instructions were sent to 30 US embassies around the world, including the one in Berlin."

Philip J. Crowley as assistant secretary of state for public affairs in 2010. (State Department)

The State Department responded to the revelations, with then- State-Department-spokesman P.J. Crowley reportedly disputing that American diplomats had assumed a new role overseas.

"Our diplomats are just that, diplomats," he said. "They represent our country around the world and engage openly and transparently with representatives of foreign governments and civil society. Through this process, they collect information that shapes our policies and actions. This is what diplomats, from our country and other countries, have done for hundreds of years."

In December 2010, just after the cables' publication, Assange told Time : "She should resign if it can be shown that she was responsible for ordering U.S. diplomatic figures to engage in espionage in the United Nations, in violation of the international covenants to which the U.S. has signed up."

Saudis & Iran

A diplomatic cable dated April 20, 2008, made clear Saudi Arabia's pressure on the United States to take action against its enemy Iran, including not ruling out military action against Teheran:

"[Then Saudi ambassador to the US Abbdel] Al-Jubeir recalled the King's frequent exhortations to the US to attack Iran and so put an end to its nuclear weapons program. 'He told you to cut off the head of the snake,' he recalled to the Charge', adding that working with the US to roll back Iranian influence in Iraq is a strategic priority for the King and his government. 11. (S) The Foreign Minister, on the other hand, called instead for much more severe US and international sanctions on Iran, including a travel ban and further restrictions on bank lending. Prince Muqrin echoed these views, emphasizing that some sanctions could be implemented without UN approval. The Foreign Minister also stated that the use of military pressure against Iran should not be ruled out."

Dyncorp & the 'Dancing Boys' of Afghanistan

The cables indicate that Afghan authorities asked the United States government to quash U.S. reporting on a scandal stemming from the actions of Dyncorp employees in Afghanistan in 2009.

Employees of Dyncorp, a paramilitary group with an infamous track-record of alleged involvement in sex trafficking and other human rights abuses in multiple countries, were revealed by Cablegate to have been involved with illegal drug use and hiring the services of a "bacha bazi," or underage dancing boy.

A 2009 cable published by WikiLeaks described an event where Dyncorp had purchased the service of a "bacha bazi." The writer of the cable does not specify what happened during the event, describing it only as "purchasing a service from a child," and he tries to convince a journalist not to cover the story in order to not "risk lives."

Although Dyncorp was no stranger to controversy by the time of the cables' publication, the revelation of the mercenary force's continued involvement in bacha bazi provoked further questions as to why the company continued to receive tax-payer funded contracts from the United States.

Sexual abuse allegations were not the only issue haunting Dyncorp. The State Department admitted in 2017 that it "could not account for" more than $1 billion paid to the company, as reported by Foreign Policy .

The New York Times later reported that U.S. soldiers had been told to turn a blind eye to the abuse of minors by those in positions of power: "Soldiers and Marines have been increasingly troubled that instead of weeding out pedophiles, the American military was arming them in some cases and placing them as the commanders of villages -- and doing little when they began abusing children."

Australia Lied About Troop Withdrawal

Prime Minister Kevin Rudd of Australia, left, with U.S. President Barack Obama, in the Oval Office, Nov. 30, 2009, to discuss a range of issues including Afghanistan and climate change. (White House/Pete Souza)

The Green Left related that the cables exposed Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd's double talk about withdrawing troops. "Despite government spin about withdrawing all 'combat forces,' the cables said some of these forces could be deployed in combat roles. One cable said, "[d]espite the withdrawal of combat forces, Rudd agreed to allow Australian forces embedded or seconded to units of other countries including the U.S. to deploy to Iraq in combat and combat support roles with those units."

US Meddling in Latin America

Cables revealed that U.S. ambassadors to Ecuador had opposed the presidential candidacy of Raphael Correa despite their pretense of neutrality, as observed by The Green Left Weekly .

Additional cables revealed the Vatican attempted to increase its influence in Latin America with the aid of the U.S. Further cables illustrated the history of Pope Francis while he was a cardinal in Argentina, with the U.S. appearing to have a positive outlook on the future pontiff.

Illegal Dealings Between US & Sweden

WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange wrote in his affidavit :

"Through the diplomatic cables I also learned of secret, informal arrangements between Sweden and the United States. The cables revealed that Swedish intelligence services have a pattern of lawless conduct where US interests are concerned. The US diplomatic cables revealed that the Swedish Justice Department had deliberately hidden particular intelligence information exchanges with the United States from the Parliament of Sweden because the exchanges were likely unlawful."

Military Reaction

On Nov. 30, 2010, the State Department declared it would remove the diplomatic cables from its secure network in order to prevent additional leaks. Antiwar.com added: "The cables had previously been accessible through SIPRNet, an ostensibly secure network which is accessible by millions of officials and soldiers. It is presumably through this network that the cables were obtained and leaked to WikiLeaks ."

The Guardian described SIPRNet as a "worldwide US military internet system, kept separate from the ordinary civilian internet and run by the Defence Department in Washington."

Political Fury

On Nov. 29, 2010, then Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said of the "Cablegate" release:

"This disclosure is not just an attack on America's foreign policy; it is an attack on the international community, the alliances and partnerships, the conventions and negotiations that safeguard global security and advance economic prosperity."

The next day, former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee called for Chelsea Manning's execution, according to Politico .

Some political figures did express support for Assange, including U.K. Labor leader Jeremy Corbyn, who wrote via Twitter days after Cablegate was published: "USA and others don't like any scrutiny via wikileaks and they are leaning on everybody to pillory Assange. What happened to free speech?"

Other notable revelations from the diplomatic cables included multiple instances of U.S. meddling in Latin America, the demand by then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton that diplomatic staff act as spies , the documentation of misconduct by U.S. paramilitary forces, the fallout of the 2008 financial crisis in Iceland, the deployment of U.S. nuclear weapons in Germany and other European countries, that the Vatican attempted to increase its influence in Latin America with the aid of the U.S. , that U.S. diplomats had essentially spied on German Chancellor Angele Merkel, and much more.

Der Spiegel reported on Hillary Clinton's demand that U.S. diplomats act as spies:

"As justification for the espionage orders, Clinton emphasized that a large share of the information that the U.S. intelligence agencies works with comes from the reports put together by State Department staff around the world. The information to be collected included personal credit card information, frequent flyer customer numbers, as well as e-mail and telephone accounts. In many cases the State Department also requested 'biometric information,' 'passwords' and 'personal encryption keys.' "

Der Spiegel added: "The U.S. State Department also wanted to obtain information on the plans and intentions of UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon and his secretariat relating to issues like Iran, according to the detailed wish list in the directive. The instructions were sent to 30 U.S. embassies around the world, including the one in Berlin."

Elizabeth Vos is a freelance reporter and co-host of CN Live.

CORRECTION: CableDrum is an independent Twitter feed and is not associated with WikiLeaks as was incorrectly reported here.

jmg , January 15, 2020 at 09:53

A truly great series, thank you.

The Revelations of WikiLeaks -- Consortium News Series

1. The Video that Put Assange in US Crosshairs -- April 23, 2019
2. The Leak That 'Exposed the True Afghan War' -- May 9, 2019
3. The Most Extensive Classified Leak in History -- May 16, 2019
4. The Haunting Case of a Belgian Child Killer and How WikiLeaks Helped Crack It -- July 11, 2019
5. Busting the Myth WikiLeaks Never Published Damaging Material on Russia -- September 23, 2019
6. US Diplomatic Cables Spark 'Arab Spring,' Expose Spying at UN & Elsewhere -- January 14, 2020

For an updated list with links to the articles, a Google search is:

"The Revelations of WikiLeaks" site:consortiumnews.com For an updated list with links to the articles, a Google search is:

"The Revelations of WikiLeaks" site:consortiumnews.com

– – –

Consortium News wrote:
> Today we resume our series The Revelations of WikiLeaks with little more than a month before the extradition hearing for imprisoned WikiLeaks publisher Julian Assange begins.

Yes and, shockingly, Julian has been allowed only 2 hours with his lawyers in the last month, crucial to prepare the extradition hearings. See:

Summary from Assange hearing at Westminster Magistrates Court this morning -- Tareq Haddad -- Thread Reader -- Jan 13th 2020

[Jan 21, 2020] Money Talks, Bullshit Walks on Cable News by Paul Street

Oct 30, 2019 | www.counterpunch.org

Is it any wonder that the nation's "liberal" cable news stations CNN and MSNBC can barely contain their disdain for Bernie Sanders' presidential campaign and even (to a lesser degree) for that of Elizabeth Warren while they promote the nauseating center-right candidacies of the bewildered racist and corporatist Joe Biden, the sinister neoliberal corporate-militarist Pete Butiggieg and even the marginal Wall Street "moderates" Amy Klobuchar and Kamala Harris? Next time you click on these stations, keep a pen and paper handy to write down the names of the corporations that pay for their broadcast content with big money commercial purchases.

I did that at various times of day on three separate occasions last week. Here are the companies I found buying ads at CNN and MSDNC:

American Advisors Group (AAG), the top lender the American reverse mortgage industry (with Tom Selleck telling seniors to trust him that reverse mortgages are not a rip off)

United Health Care, for-profit "managed health care company" with 300,000 employers and an annual revenue of $226 billion, ranked sixth on the 2019 Fortune 500.

Menards, the nation's third largest home improvement chain, with revenue over $10 billion in 2017.

CHANITX, a drug to get off cigarettes ("slow Turkey") sold by the pharmaceutical firm Pfizer, 65th on the Fortune 500.

Tom Steyer (billionaire for president)

Lincoln Financial, 187 th on the Fortune 500, an American holding company that controls multiple insurance and investment management businesses.

Liberty Mutual, an insurance company with more than 50,000 employees in more than 900 locations and ranked 68 th on the Fortune 500 two years ago.

Allstate Insurance: 79 th on the Fortune 500, with more than 45,000 employees.

INFINITI Suburban Utility Vehicle (new price ranging from 37K to 60K), produced by Nissan, the sixth largest auto-making corporation in the world.

RCN (annual revenue of $636 million) WiFi for business

Jaguar Elite luxury autos.

Porsche luxury autos, selling new models priced at $115,000, $145,000, and $163,00, and $294,000.

Mercedes Benz luxury auto, including an SRL-Class model that starts at $498,000

Capital Group, one of the world's oldest and biggest investment management firms, with $1.87 trillion in assets under its control.

Otezla, a plaque psoriasis drug, developed by the New Jersey drug company Celgene and owned by Amgene, a leading California-based biotechnology firm with total assets of $78 billion.

Trelegy, a CPD drug produced by the British company GSK, the world's seventh leading pharmaceutical corporation, with the fourth largest capitalization of any company on the London Stock Exchange.

HunterDouglass – elite windows made by a Dutch multinational corporation with more than 23,000 employees and locations in more than 70 countries.

Humira – drug for Crohn's disease and other ailments, manufactured by Abbvie, with 28,000 global employees and total assets of $59 billion.

Primateme Mist – for breathing, produced by Amphastar Pharmaceuticals.

Glucerna – drug for diabetes, produced by Abbot Laboratories, an American medical company with more than 100,00 employees and total assets of $67 billion.

Prevagen – a controversial drug for brain health produced by Quincy Bioscience

DISCOVER Credit Card, the third largest credit card brand in the U.S., with total assets of $92 billion.

Fidelity Investments, an American multinational financial services corporation with more than 50,000 employees and an operating income of $5.3 billion.

Cadillac XT-6 high-end SUV, starting at $53K, made by General Motors (no. 10 on the Fortune 500 for total revenue), which makes automobiles in 37 countries, employees 173,000 persons, and has total assets $227 billion.

Comfort Inn, owned by Choice Hotels, one of the largest hotel chains in the world, franchising 7,005 properties in 41 countries and territories.

Audible/Amazon – books on tape from the world's biggest mega-corporation Amazon, ranked fifth on the Fortune 500, with 647,000 employees and total assets of $163 billion.

Ring Home Security, owned by Amazon

Coventry Health Insurance, no. 168 on the Fortune 500

SANDALS Resorts International, with 16 elite resort properties in the Caribbean.

Cigna Medicare Advantage, owned by the national health insurer Cigna, no. 229 on the Fortune 500

SoFi Finance, an online personal finance company that provides student loan refinancing, mortgages and personal loans.

Ameriprise Finance, an investment services firm, no. 240 on F500.

It's not for nothing that bit Fortune 500 firms are represented in my anecdotal sponsor list above. Last summer, SQAD MediaCosts reported that a 30-second commercial during CNN's prime-time lineup (Anderson Cooper, Chris Cuomo, and Don Lemon), cost between $7,000 and $12,000. The price has certainly gone up significantly now that Trumpeachment is bringing in new eyeballs.

The three most prominent and recurrent advertising streams appear (anecdotally) to come from Big Pharma (the leading drug companies), insurance (health insurance above all), and finance (investment services/wealth management). These giant concentrated corporate and industry sectors are naturally opposed to the financial regulation and anti-trust policy that Senator Warren says she wants to advance. Amazon can hardly be expected to back the big-tech break-up that Warren advocates.

Big corporate lenders certainly have no interest in making college tuition free, a Sanders promise that would slash a major profit source for finance capital.

The big health insurance firms are naturally opposed both to the Single Payer national health insurance plan that Sanders puts at the top of his platform and to the milder version of Medicare for All that Warren says she backs. Warren and especially Sanders pledge to remove the parasitic, highly expensive profit motive from health insurance and to make publicly funded quality and affordable health care a human right in the U.S. The corporate insurance mafia is existentially opposed to such human decency.

Both of the "progressive Democratic candidates" (a description that fits Sanders far better than it does Warren) loudly promise to slash drug costs, something Pfizer, Abbvie, Amgene, Amphastar, and Abbot Labs can hardly be expected to relish.

None of the big companies buying advertising time on CNN and MSNBC have any interest in the progressive taxation and restored union organizing and collective bargaining rights that Sanders advocates.

The big financial services firms paying for media content on "liberal" cable news stations primarily serve affluent clients, many if not most of whom are likely to oppose increased taxes on the well off.

The resort, tourism, luxury car, and business travel firms that buy commercials on these networks are hardly about to back policies leading to the real or potential reduction of discretionary income enjoyed by upper middle class and rich people.

So, gosh, who do these corporate and financial interests favor in the 2020 presidential election? Neoliberal Corporatists like Joe Biden, Pete Butiggieg, Kamala Harris, and Amy Klobuchar, of course. Dutifully obedient to the preferences and commands of the nation's unelected dictatorship of money, these insipid corporate Democrats loyally claim that Sanders and Warren want to viciously "tax the middle class" to pay for supposedly unaffordable excesses like Medicare for All and the existentially necessary Green New Deal.

In reality, Single Payer and giant green jobs programs and more that We the People need and want are eminently affordable if the United States follows Sanders' counsel by adequately and progressively taxing its absurdly wealthy over-class (the top tenth of the upper 1% than owns more than 90% of U.S. wealth) and its giant, surplus-saturated corporations and financial institutions. At the same time, as Warren keeps trying to explain, the cost savings for ordinary Americans will be enormous with the profits system taken out of health insurance.

Sanders reminds voters that there's no way to calculate the cost savings of keeping livable ecology alive for future generations. The climate catastrophe is a grave existential threat to the whole species.

These are basic arguments of elementary social, environmental, and democratic decency that the investors and managers behind and atop big corporations buying commercials on CNN and MSNBC don't want heard. As a result, CNN and MSDNC "debate" moderators and talking heads persist in purveying the, well, fake news, that Sanders doesn't know how to pay Single Payer, free public college, and a Green New Deal.

It's not for nothing that CNN and MSNBC have promoted the hapless Biden over and above Sanders and Warren – this notwithstanding the former Vice President's ever more obvious and embarrassing inadequacy as a candidate.

It's not for nothing that MSNBC and CNN have habitually warned against the supposed "socialist" menace posed by the highly popular Sanders (a New Deal progressive at leftmost) while refusing to properly describe Trump's White House and his dedicated base as pro-fascists. MSDNC has even get a weekly segment to the silver-spooned multi-millionaire advertising executive Donny Deutsch after he said the following on the network last winter:

"I find Donald Trump reprehensible as a human being, but a socialist candidate is more dangerous to this company, country, as far as the strength and well-being of the country, than Donald Trump. I would vote for Donald Trump, a despicable human being I will be so distraught to the point that that could even come out of my mouth, if we have a socialist [Democratic presidential candidate or president] because that will take our country so down, and we are not Denmark. I love Denmark, but that's not who we are. And if you love who we are and all the great things that still have to have binders put on the side. Please step away from the socialism."

It's not for nothing that the liberal cable networks go out of their way to deny Sanders remotely appropriate broadcast time. Or that they habitually and absurdly frame Single Payer health insurance not as the great civilizing social and human rights victory it would be (the long-overdue cost-slashing de-commodification of health care coverage combined with the provision of health care for all regardless of social status and class) but rather as a dangerous and authoritarian assault on Americans' existing (and unmentionably inadequate and over-expensive) health insurance.

Dare we mention that the lords of capital who pay for cable news salaries and content are heavily invested in the fossil fuels and in the relentless economic growth that are pushing the planet rapidly towards environmental tipping points that gravely endanger prospects for a decent and organized human existence in coming decades?

It's not for nothing that the progressive measures advanced by Sanders and supported by most Americans are regularly treated as "unrealistic," "irresponsible," "too radical," "too idealistic," "impractical," and "too expensive."

It's for nothing that Sanders is commonly left out of the liberal cable networks' campaign coverage and "horse race" discussions even as he enjoys the highest approval rating among all the candidates in the running.

With their preferred centrist candidate Joe Biden having performed in a predictably poor and buffoonish fashion (Biden was a terrible, gaffe-prone politician well before his brains started coming out of his ears) falling back into something like a three-way tie with the liberal Warren and the populist progressive Sanders, the liberal cable talking heads and debate moderators have naturally tried to boost "moderate" neoliberal-corporatist "second" and "third tier" Democratic presidential candidates like Butiggieg, Klobuchar and the surprisingly weak Kamala Harris. It's not for nothing that these and other marginal corporate candidates (e.g. Beto O'Rourke) get outsized attention on "liberal" cable stations regardless of their tiny support bases. Even if they can't win, these small-time contenders take constant neoliberal jabs at Sanders and even at the more clearly corporate-co-optable Warren (who proudly describes herself as "capitalist in my bones").

Thanks to Harris's curiously weak showing, Biden's dotard-like absurdity, and the likely non-viability of Butiggieg (the U.S. is not yet primed for two men and a baby in the White House), the not-so liberal cable channels are now joining the New Yok Times and Washington Post in gently floating the possibility of a dark-horse neoliberal Democratic Party newcomer (Michael Bloomberg, John Kerry, Michelle Obama, Sherrod Brown, and maybe even Hillary Clinton herself) to fill Joke Biden's Goldman-and Citigroup-approved shoes in the coming primary and Caucus battles with "radical socialist" Bernie and (not-so) "left" Warren.

So what if running an establishment Obama-Clinton-Citigroup-Council on Foreign Relations Democrat in 2020 will de-mobilize much of the nation's progressive electoral base, helping the malignant white nationalist monster Donald Trump get a second term?

As the old working-class slogan says, "money talks and bullshit walks."

"Follow the money" is the longstanding mantra in campaign finance research and criminal prosecution. It should also apply to our understanding of the dominant media's political news content. U.S. media managers are employed by giant corporations (MSNBC is a division of Comcast NBC Universal, no. 71 on the Fortune 500 and CNN is owned by Turner Broadcasting, no, 68 on the Fortune 500) that are naturally reluctant to publish or broadcast material that might offend the wealthy capitalist interests that pay for broadcasting by purchasing advertisements. As Noam Chomsky has noted, large corporations are not only the major producers of the United States' mass commercial media. They are also that media's top market, something that deepens the captivity of nation's supposedly democratic and independent media to big capital:

"The reliance of a journal on advertisers shapes and controls and substantially determines what is presented to the public the very idea of advertiser reliance radically distorts the concept of free media. If you think about what the commercial media are, no matter what, they are businesses. And a business produces something for a market. The producers in this case, almost without exception, are major corporations. The market is other businesses – advertisers. The product that is presented to the market is readers (or viewers), so these are basically major corporations providing audiences to other businesses, and that significantly shapes the nature of the institution."

At the same time, both U.S. corporate media managers and the advertisers who supply revenue for their salaries are hesitant to produce content that might alienate affluent folks – the people who hire pricey investment advisors, go to Caribbean resorts and buy Jaguars and Mercedes Benzes and count for an ever-rising share of U.S. consumer purchases. It is those with the most purchasing power who are naturally most targeted by advertisers.

Money talks, bullshit talks on "liberal" cable news, as in the legal and party and elections systems and indeed across all of society.

Watch the wannabe fascist strongman Trump walk to a second term with no small help from a "liberal" corporate media whose primary goal is serving corporate sponsors and its own bottom line, not serving social justice, environmental sanity, and democracy – or even helping Democrats win elections.

[Jan 19, 2020] Why Neocons Hate Russia Even More Than They Hate Any Other Nation

Jan 19, 2020 | www.strategic-culture.org

Eric Zuesse July 27, 2018 © Photo: Public domain

Neoconservatism started in 1953 with Henry "Scoop" Jackson, the Democratic Party US Senator from the state of Washington (1953-1983), who became known as a 'defense' hawk, and as "the Senator from Boeing," because Boeing practically owned him. The UK's Henry Jackson Society was founded in 2005 in order to carry forward Senator Jackson's unwavering and passionate endorsement of growing the American empire so that the US-UK alliance will control the entire world (and US weapons-makers will dominate in every market).

Later, during the 1990s, neoconservatism became taken over by the Mossad and the lobbyists for Israel and came to be publicly identified as a 'Jewish' ideology, despite its having -- and having long had -- many champions who were 'anti-communist' or 'pro-democracy' or simply even anti-Russian, but who were neither Jewish nor even focused at all on the Middle East. Republicans Donald Rumsfeld, Dick Cheney, and John McCain; and the Democrat, CIA Director James Woolsey -- the latter of whom was one of the patrons of Britain's Henry Jackson Society -- were especially prominent neoconservatives, who came to prominence even before neocons became called "neoconservatives." What all neocons have always shared in common has been a visceral hatred of Russians. That comes above anything else -- and even above NATO (the main neocon organization).

During recent decades, neocons have been hating Iranians and more generally Shiites -- such as in Syria and in Lebanon, and now also in Yemen -- and not only hating Russians.

When the Israel lobby during the 1990s and after, pumped massive resources into getting the US Government to invade first Iraq and then Iran, neoconservatism got its name, but the ideology itself did not change. However, there are a few neoconservatives today who are too ignorant to know, in any coherent way, what their own underlying beliefs are, or why, and so who are anti-Russians (that's basic for any neocon) who either don't know or else don't particularly care that Iran and Shia Muslims generally, are allied with Russia. Neoconservatives such as this, are simply confused neocons, people whose underlying ideology is self-contradictory, because they've not carefully thought things through.

An example is Vox's Alex Ward, who built his career as an anti-Russia propagandist , and whose recent ten-point tirade against Russia I then exposed as being false on each one of its ten points , each of those points having been based upon mere allegations by US neocons against Russia without any solid evidence whatsoever. Indictments, and other forms of accusations, are not evidence for anything. But a stupid 'journalist' accepts them as if they were evidence, if those accusations come from 'the right side' -- but not if they come from 'the wrong side'. They don't understand even such a simple distinction as that between an indictment, and a conviction. A conviction is at least a verdict (though maybe based on false 'evidence' and thus false itself), but all that an accusation is an accusation -- and all accusations (in the American legal system) are supposed to be disbelieved, unless and until there is at least a verdict that gives the accusation legal force. (This is called "innocent unless proven guilty.")

Earlier, Mr. Ward had headlined as if he were an anti -neocon, when he posted his "America is fueling the war in Yemen. Congress is finally pushing back." What can account for that seemingly incongruous article?

Mr. Ward is a Democrat -- an heir to Senator Jackson's allegedly anti-communist though actually anti-Russian ideology -- but, since Ward isn't as intelligent as the ideology's founder was, Ward becomes anti -neocon when a Republican-led Administration is doing things (such as Ward there criticizes) that are even more-neocon than today's Democratic Party itself is. In other words: 'journalists' (actually, propagandists) such as he, are more partisan in favor of support of Democratic Party billionaires against Republican Party billionaires, than in support of conquering Russia as opposed to cooperating with Russia (and with all other countries). They're unaware that all American billionaires support expansion of the US empire -- including over Yemen (to bring Yemen in, too -- which invasion Ward incongruously opposes). But politicians (unlike their financial backers) need to pretend not to be so bloodthirsty or so beholden to the military-industrial complex. Thus, an American doesn't need to be intelligent in order to build his or her career in 'journalism', on the basis of having previously served as a propagandist writing for non-profits that are mere fronts for NATO and for Israel, and which are fronts actually for America's weapons-manufacturing firms, who need those wars in order to grow their profits. Such PR for front-organizations for US firms such as Lockheed Martin, is excellent preparation for a successful career in American 'journalism'. If a person is stupid, then it's still necessary to be stupid in the right way, in order to succeed; and Ward is, and does.

This, for example, is how it makes sense that Ward had previously been employed at the War on the Rocks website that organized the Republican neoconservative campaign against Donald Trump during the 2016 Republican primaries : the mega-donors to both US Parties are united in favor of America conquering Russia. And that's why War on the Rocks had organized Republican neocons to oppose Trump: it was done in order to increase the chances for Trump's rabidly anti-Russia and pro-Israel competitors such as Ted Cruz or Marco Rubio to win that nomination instead, which would then have produced the billionaires' dream contest, between Hillary Clinton versus an equally neoconservative Republican nominee. A bipartisan neoconservatism controls both of the American political Parties. A 'journalist' who displays that sort of bipartisanship can't fail in America, no matter how incompetent at real journalism he or she might be. (However, they do have to be literate . Stupid, maybe; but literate, definitely.)

The core of America's form of capitalism has come to be the US aristocracy's bipartisan, liberal and conservative, Democratic and Republican, form of capitalism, which isn't merely fascist (which includes privatizing everything that can be privatized) but which is also imperialist (which means favoring the country's perpetration of invasions and coups in order to expand that nation's empire). The United States is now a globe-spanning empire, controlling not merely the aristocracies in a few banana republics such as Guatemala and Honduras, but also the aristocracies in richer countries such as France, Germany and UK, so as to extract from virtually the entire world -- by means mainly of deception but also sometimes public threats and clearly coercive -- unfair advantages for corporations that are within its borders, and against corporations that are headquartered in foreign countries. America's billionaires -- both the Democratic ones and the Republican ones -- are 100% in favor of America's conquering the world: this ideology is entirely bipartisan, in the United States. Though the billionaires succeeded, during the first Cold War -- the one that was nominally against communism -- at fooling the public to think they were aiming ultimately to conquer communism, George Herbert Walker Bush made clear, on the night of 24 February 1990, privately to the leaders of the US aristocracy's foreign allies, that the actual goal was world-conquest, and so the Cold War would now secretly continue on the US side , even after ending on the USS.R. side. When GHW Bush did that, the heritage of US Senator Jackson became no longer the formerly claimed one, of 'anti-communism', but was, clearly now and henceforth, anti-Russian. And that's what it is today -- not only in the Democratic Party, and not only in the Republican Party, and not only in the United States, but throughout the entire US alliance .

And this is what we are seeing today, in all of the US-and-allied propaganda-media. America is always 'the injured party' against 'the aggressors'; and, so, one after another, such as in Iraq, and in Libya, and in Syria, and in Iran, and in Yemen, and in China, all allies (or even merely friends) of Russia are 'the aggressors' and are 'dictatorships' and are 'threats to America', and only the US side represents 'democracy' . It's actually an aristocracy , which has deeply deceived its public, to think it's a democracy. Just as every aristocracy is based on lies and on coercion, this one is, too -- it is no exception; it's only that this particular empire is on a historically unprecedentedly large scale, dominating all continents. Support that, and you're welcomed into the major (i.e., billionaire-backed) 'news' media in America, and in its allied countries. This is America's 'democracy' . (Of course, an article such as this one is not 'journalism' in America and its allied countries; it's merely "blogging." So, it won't be found there though it's being submitted everywhere. It will be accepted and published at only the honest news-sites. A reader may Web-search the headline here in order to find out which ones those are. Not many 'news'media report the institutionalized corruptness of the 'news'media; they just criticize one-another, in the way that the politicians do, which is bipartisan -- the bipartisan dictatorship. But the rot that's actually throughout the 'news'media, is prohibited to be reported about and published, in and by any of them. It is totally suppressed reality. Only the few honest news-sites will publish this information and its documentation, the links here.)

However, actually, the first time that the term either "neoconservatism" or "neo-conservatism" is known to have been used, was in the British magazine, The Contemporary Review , January 1883, by Henry Dunkley, in his "The Conservative Dilemma" where "neo-conservative" appeared 8 times, and was contrasted to traditional "conservatism" because, whereas the traditional type "Toryism" was pro-aristocratic, anti-democratic, and overtly elitist; the new type was pro-democratic, anti-aristocratic, and overtly populist (which no form of conservatism honestly is -- they're all elitist): "What is this new creed of yours? That there must be no class influence in politics? That any half-dozen hinds on my estate are as good as so many dukes? That the will of the people is the supreme political tribunal? That if a majority at the polls bid us abolish the Church and toss the Crown into the gutter we are forthwith to be their most obedient servants?" "No: from whatever point of view we consider the question, it is plain that the attempt to reconstruct the Tory party on a Democratic basis cannot succeed." "The Tories have always been adepts at conservation, but the things they have been most willing to conserve were not our liberties but the restrictions put upon our liberties." "The practical policy of Conservatism would not alter, and could not be altered much, but its pretensions would have to be pitched in a lower key." "Here we seem to get within the smell of soup, the bustle of evening receptions, and the smiles of dowagers. The cares which weigh upon this couple of patriot souls cannot be described as august. It is hardly among such petty anxieties that the upholders of the Empire and the pilots of the State are bred." "The solemn abjuration which is now proposed in the name of Neo-conservatism resembles a charge of dynamite." He viewed neo-conservatives as being let's-pretend populists, whose pretense at being democrats will jeopardize the Empire, not strengthen it. Empire, and its rightness, were so deeply rooted in the rulers' psyche, it went unchallenged. In fact, at that very time, in the 1880s, Sir Cecil Rhodes was busy creating the foundation for the UK-US empire that now controls most of the world .

The modern pro-Israel neoconservatism arose in the 1960s when formerly Marxist Jewish intellectuals in New York City and Washington DC, who were even more anti-communist than anti-nazi, became impassioned with the US empire being extended to the entire world by spreading 'democracy' (and protection of Israel) as if this Israel-protecting empire were a holy crusade not only against the Soviet Union, which was demonized by them, but against Islam, which also was demonized by them (since they were ethnocentric Jews and the people whose land the 'Israelis' had stolen were overwhelmingly Muslims -- and now were very second-class citizens in their own long-ancestral and also birth-land). This was how they distinguished themselves from "paleoconservatism" which wasn't nearly so Messianic, but which was more overtly ethnocentric, though ethnic Christian, instead of ethnic Jewish. The "paleoconservatives" were isolationists, not imperialists. They originated from the opponents of America's entry into WW II against the imperialists of that time, who were the fascists. Those American "isolationists" would have given us a world controlled by Hitler and his Axis allies. All conservatism is absurd, but there are many forms of it, none of which makes intelligent sense.

The roots of neoconservatism are 100% imperialistic, colonialist, supremacist, and blatantly evil. They hate Russia because they still crave to conquer it , and don't know how, short of nuclear annihilation, which would be extremely dangerous, even for themselves. So, they endanger everyone.

[Jan 18, 2020] Eastern Ukrainians, who were the biggest losers in the post-Soviet deindustrilization, have harmed you by existing and dying of diseases of poverty and despair.

Jan 18, 2020 | www.unz.com

AP says: January 15, 2020 at 9:59 pm GMT 100 Words @Thulean Friend

That too. Ukraine is a split country on pro/anti-Russian attitudes

Rather strong and somewhat anachronistic statement. Ukraine was split prior to 2014.

There are still pro-Russian areas but being free of Crimea and Donbas means Ukraine can no longer be characterized as "split." Probably 1/4 of the population can be considered to be politically friendly to Russia. Given, say, Latvia's ethnic Russian population, that country is nowadays probably more "split" than Ukraine.

JPM , says: January 15, 2020 at 10:59 pm GMT

@AP d in a frozen conflict zone. After they were fucked by industrial collapse and job loss. Before that they were fucked by wars, famines and the Bolsheviks. They really can't seem to catch a break.

Europeans seem to be on the precipice of disaster everywhere. It would be nice to band together, rather than die while getting hung up on the narcissism of small differences. Probably just wishful thinking on my part though. I guess Americans can't understand how important it is for Ukrainians on one side of the Dniepr to show how different they are from Ukrainians on the other or how different they are from Russians for that matter.

[Jan 18, 2020] events appear to have escalated from the 25 December killing of five PMF guys on the Syria-Iraq border by an unattributed drone or missile strike. Neoliberal MSM try to hide or obscure this fact.

Jan 18, 2020 | www.unz.com

Swedish Family , says: Show Comment January 3, 2020 at 8:28 pm GMT

@Oscar Peterson

Significantly, events appear to have escalated from the 25 December killing of five PMF guys on the Syria-Iraq border by an unattributed drone or missile strike. Our media is doing its best to obscure this event as the probable starting point. Two days later on 27 December, the rocket fire near Kirkuk killed the US contractor. Then came the strike on KH troops back out in the West and now the assassination of Soleimani et al.

[ ]

So the trigger was the 25 December attack, and all the timing flows from that, not from any great real estate developer savvy. Frankly, in my view, you give Trump way to much credit for systematic thought. I don't think he really does that at all.

This is also the view of the Middle-East veterans over at Patrick Lang's blog:

Last weekend, in response to a rocket attack on a base outside Kirkuk that left one US contractor dead and four US servicemen wounded, we launched drone strikes on five Iraqi PMU outposts in Iraq and Syria near Abukamal killing 25 members and wounding scores more of the Kata'ib Hezbollah brigades of the PMU.

We blamed Iran and the Kata'ib Hezbollah for the rocket attack near Kirkuk. That may be true, but the Kata'ib Hezbollah is not some rogue militia controlled out of Teheran. It is an integral part of the PMU, its 46th and 47th brigades and has been for years. The PMU is an integral part of the Iraqi military and has been for years. The PMU played a major role in defeating IS in both Iraq and Syria. Our attack on the Kata'ib Hezbollah outposts was an attack on the Iraqi military and government. We informed PM Abdul-Mahdi of our intended attacks. Abdul-Mahadi warned us not to do it, but, of course, we conducted the attacks despite his warning. We were proud of the attacks. The Pentagon even released footage of the attacks. It was supposed to be a clear message to Teheran.

Unfortunately for us, the message was also heard by Iraqis. After the funerals of many of the victims of our attacks on the PMU outposts, a large crowd of protestors headed for the US Embassy in the Green Zone. For weeks prior to this, Iraqi security forces kept protestors from entering the Green Zone and approaching the US Embassy. Not this time. The crowds, including mourners fresh from the funerals of their family members and many PMU soldiers, unarmed but in uniform, poured into the Green Zone right to the gates of the Embassy itself. A reception area was entered and burned. Iraqi security forces of the PrimeMinister's Counter Terrorism Command were among the protestors. I surmise that PM Abdul-Mahdi was sending his own message back to the US.

https://turcopolier.typepad.com/sic_semper_tyrannis/2020/01/our-embassy-in-baghdad-ttg.html

The protests at the American embassy, then, were over Iraqi servicemen murdered in American drone strikes

Qasem Soleimani was an Iranian soldier. He lived by the sword and died by the sword. He met a soldier's destiny. It is being said that he was a BAD MAN. Absurd! To say that he was a BAD MAN because he fought us as well as the Sunni jihadis is simply infantile. Were all those who fought the US BAD MEN? How about Gentleman Johhny Burgoyne? Was he a BAD MAN? How about Sitting Bull? Was he a BAD MAN? How about Aguinaldo? Another BAD MAN? Let us not be juvenile.

The Iraqi PMU commander who died with Soleimani was Abu Mahdi al Muhandis. He was a member of a Shia militia that had been integrated into the Iraqi armed forces. IOW, we killed an Iraqi general. We killed him without the authorization of the supposedly sovereign state of Iraq.

We created the present government of Iraq through the farcical "purple thumb" elections. That government holds a seat in the UN General Assembly and is a sovereign entity in international law in spite of Trump's tweet today that said among other things that we have "paid" Iraq billions of US dollars. To the Arabs, this statement that brands them as hirelings of the US is close to the ultimate in insult.

https://turcopolier.typepad.com/sic_semper_tyrannis/2020/01/will-trump-welcome-the-ejection-of-the-us-from-iraq-he-should.html

and now the Americans went one better and murdered an Iraqi general.

[Jan 18, 2020] Major Political Changes in Russia

Jan 18, 2020 | www.unz.com

Major announcements in this State of the Nation speech on Jan 15, 2020.

Here is a very brief summary to get the conversation started.

Immediate politics :

who reduced uncollected VAT from 20% to 1%. Source tells me FM Sergey Lavrov rumored to be permanently retiring.

Constitutional changes :

Demographics :

continued fall in Russia's fertility rates to 1.5 children per woman this year (up from post-Soviet peak of close to 1.8 in mid-2000s), setting 1.7 children per woman as the new target for 2024. Reaffirmed demographics as the first national priority. Maternity capital to be increased by further 150,000 rubles and constitute 616,617 rubles (≈$10,000) for a family with two children, to be annually indexed.

***

Some very tentative thoughts :

(1) I have long thought now that Putin's end game is to transition into an overseeing "elder statesman" role, along the model of Lee Kuan Yew/PAP in Singapore [see 1 , 2 , 3 ]. This appears to be the final confirmation that this is happening.

(2) Questions about the succession revolved around (a) The Belarus variant, in which it effectively constitutes a new state with Russia, allowing Putin to become the supreme head of that state; (b) A constitutional reshuffle such as the one we're seeing here. This question has also been answered.


utu , says: January 15, 2020 at 5:16 pm GMT

" Putin's end game is to transition into an overseeing "elder statesman" role" – Not always does it work: King Lear, Benedict 16.

"Lear gave up a God-given duty and right to rule his people. His tragic flaw 'hamartia' is presumptuousness. He presumes that he can divest himself of what God invested him with (the Elizabethan idea of the divine rights of the ruler), he grows in tragic stature as the play progresses." – found on google.

AnonFromTN , says: January 15, 2020 at 5:28 pm GMT

Putin's end game is to transition into an overseeing "elder statesman" role

Looks more like he plans to become a powerful Prime Minister after 2024, rather than elder statesman. Might be good in the medium term: politicians of his caliber are rare. Still, in the longer term Russia needs a real successor: rule by committee never works, even in smaller and simpler countries.

Anatoly Karlin , says: Website January 15, 2020 at 5:42 pm GMT
@AnonFromTN I think (and it's already been said for years) that's he too tired for the role of PM, which is more intensive than the Presidency and involved dealing with boring domestic crap whereas the Presidency, at least, offers more in the way of Grand Strategy, diplomacy, etc.

I think the likeliest game plan is for him to chair a much more empowered State Council after 2024. (This is what Nazarbayev did with the Security Council after retiring last year).

Felix Keverich , says: January 15, 2020 at 5:42 pm GMT

Presidential candidates should have been resident in Russia for 25 years (previously 10 years) and never had a foreign citizenship. (This rules out a large proportion of Atlanticists and crypto-Atlanticists).

Does this imply, that they'll allow an actual election in 2024? I'm getting excited

Speaking of constitutional changes, they should just get rid of the entire Yeltsin's text, and write a new one. Yeltsin's constitution is a mishmash of French and American constitutions, completely detached from the country's realities and tradition.

So union with Belarus is still on the table right? But if that happens it would be Belarus joining a continuous RF, under the newly modified constitution?

My take on this is that Lukashenka told Putin to piss off, and he did. So no union.

JPM , says: January 15, 2020 at 5:44 pm GMT

Reaffirmed demographics as the first national priority.

How about not importing all of Central Asia, so that wages aren't depressed. Higher wages might boost that low TFR.

Maternity capital to be increased by further 150,000 rubles and constitute 616,617 rubles (≈$10,000) for a family with two children, to be annually indexed.

Will that will help subsidize the Chechens, Avars, Laks etc. the most relative to their population size because Russia is a "Multinational" state with equality for all of its "constituent" nations?

Speaking of which will Uzbek and Tajik guests be able to get in on that too? A future Russian Duma might need to grant more rights to them because Russia will need more workers to support its aging population. They speak Russian after all, and there is a shared history. So, they will integrate well into society. I feel like that is what a future Russian PM will be arguing a few years down the line.

AnonFromTN , says: January 15, 2020 at 5:46 pm GMT
@Boswald Bollocksworth s everything that is going to befall it.
Second, Lukashenko himself is a problem. He might be qualified to run a small agrobusiness, but certainly nothing greater than that. Yet his outsized ego (common among morons, think Bush Jr) won't let him fade away peacefully.
Third, Belarus is subsidized by Russia, and many Russian citizens believe that the money would be much better spent inside Russia or helping countries that deserve this aid, like Syria.
Maybe Putin thinks differently, but he does a lot to remain popular. So, after pension reform hit to his support I don't think he is going to do something most people disapprove of.
Anatoly Karlin , says: Website January 15, 2020 at 5:48 pm GMT
@JPM Fortunately, there's very little Central Asian breeding going on it Russia – the pattern is for them to make their money (5-10x what they can make at home) and raise families at home.

Chechens, Avars, etc. will benefit disproportionately, but the program is after all primarily intended as an incentive. Personally, I think a childlessness tax will be much more effective, since people react better to penalties than rewards – plus it will rake in a net profit – but I don't suppose its politically feasible in the modern age.

Thulean Friend , says: January 15, 2020 at 5:53 pm GMT
Seems like a good balance between a liberal direction – limiting any one president to two absolute terms while substantially increasing the say of the parliament – and some common sense requirements (like on citizenship).

Putting it to a referendum is also welcome. The will of the people should not only be heard but increased.

Putin bemoaned continued fall in Russia's fertility rates to 1.5 children per woman this year (up from post-Soviet peak of close to 1.8 in mid-2000s), setting 1.7 children per woman as the new target for 2024.
Reaffirmed demographics as the first national priority.
Maternity capital to be increased by further 150,000 rubles and constitute 616,617 rubles (≈$10,000) for a family with two children, to be annually indexed.

I doubt this will work.

The biggest problem for fertility all over the world is housing. As long as the housing sector is neoliberalised, it will be a major impediment. Affordable housing is per definition low-margin and hence not interesting to private developers. For them, a perpetual housing shortage pushes up the profit margin. All firms are constantly seeking to maximise profits, so their behaviour is rational from a purely market fundamentalist point of view. That's why market fundamentalism need to be overthrown. There has to be a massive building spree to lower the cost of housing to no more than 4-5 years of annual (net) wages for a median worker to buy without debt. That would be the real game changer. Import the churkas and get it done.

The second problem is ideology and religiosity. If you look at Israel, a major component of their high fertility is the massively increasing Haredi sector. Even outside the Haredis, they have a high share of genuinely religious jews. For the seculars, TFR is still a respectable 2.5, which is likely explained by nationalism. Whatever Russian nationalism is, it isn't very fecund. Russians aren't very religious either, though Putin seems to be. Church attendence in Russia is quite low. At this stage, I don't believe high fertility can be solved without going into artificial wombs and more exotic solutions. A cultural revolution doesn't seem to be on the cards.

(2) Questions about the succession revolved around (a) The Belarus variant, in which it effectively constitutes a new state with Russia, allowing Putin to become the supreme head of that state; (b) A constitutional reshuffle such as the one we're seeing here. This question has also been answered.

I still think Belarus will be swallowed by Russia within this decade.

[Jan 18, 2020] The new role of Russian Federation State Council in Putin plan

Jan 18, 2020 | www.unz.com

Mitleser , says: January 15, 2020 at 6:13 pm GMT

@Aly so Chairman of the State Council.

The State Council includes the following members: the Speaker of the Federation Council of the Federal Assembly of the Russian Federation, the Speaker of the State Duma of the Federal Assembly of the Russian Federation, Presidential Plenipotentiary Envoys to the federal districts, senior officials (heads of the highest executive agencies of state power) in Russia's federal constituent entities, and the heads of the political parties in the State Duma.

http://en.kremlin.ru/structure/state-council

[Jan 18, 2020] Mishustin is a genius at reforming bureaucracies with IT systems

Jan 18, 2020 | www.unz.com

Philip Owen , says: January 15, 2020 at 6:28 pm GMT

Mishustin is a genius at reforming bureaucracies with IT systems. He is also an economist who thinks Russia should be less autarkic. He is in the Kudrin camp. For example, he is still scheduled to speak at the Gaidar forum. Shoigu seems to have fallen back. M is associated witht he Union of Right Forces.

There has been a huge Twitter storm of people/trolls posting this a Putin's effort to stay in power.

[Jan 18, 2020] More power to Parliament means Oligarchy control, like all western countries.

Jan 18, 2020 | www.unz.com

nickels , says: January 15, 2020 at 6:59 pm GMT

More power to Parliament means Oligarchy control, like all western countries.
Not good.
Maïkl Makfaïl , says: January 15, 2020 at 11:47 pm GMT
@nickels Exactly . Kudrin and his friends want parliament to have more power so that the russian people have less of it. They know they have 0 legitimacy , that the people hate them and that they would never survive at the top of the political elite if a real and intelligent nationalist comes to power in Russia one day ( Putin is a half-disapointment whose main merit is to have benefited from the work of Primakov ). They want the presidency to be paralysed . I hope they wont succeed and that there will always be a strong statesman on their way in Russia.
Thulean Friend , says: January 16, 2020 at 4:50 am GMT
@nickels control away from oligarchs, but that is more due to his own force of personality rather than the system itself.

In brief, whether a country will be beholden to oligarchs is less due to the governance structure and more about the general culture. Some countries have a very corrupt citizenry/culture and that will produce bad outcomes in most situations in the long run regardless of the political system. This can only be suspended temporarily by a very strong leader – but you only get them infrequently.

The only hope to reduce power of oligarchs when Putin leaves power is to attack corruption in society, at both high levels and ground levels.

nickels , says: January 16, 2020 at 3:17 pm GMT
@Thulean Friend 'The only institution ever devised by men for mastering the money powers in the state is the Monarchy.'
Napolean.

Belloc, for one, writes over and over on this theme.

Most European histories are Whig histories, and, hence, worthless on this topic. Which is not to discount your valid point about princes becoming indebted to jews. Aristocracy had this problem to a greater extent.

Daniel Chieh , says: January 16, 2020 at 5:30 pm GMT
@nickels advantage. Contrary to Thulean, I believe that universal rule of law actually weakens the state and its ability to control merchantile factions. Of course, casual acceptance of "rule of power" is a form of corruption and if it isn't limited to the strongman himself, results in wasteful factionalism.

However, this essential snubbing of the merchantile factions has the very obvious result of them working against the state, for "rule of law"(which benefits them), and of course, not helping their rivals in the warrior factions. In the long run, lack of access to liquidity can severely cripple governments that don't play well with potential creditors.

nickels , says: January 16, 2020 at 7:56 pm GMT
@Daniel Chieh

I believe that universal rule of law actually weakens the state and its ability to control merchantile factions.

Yes, I think this is the key factor. Government by committee is no government, which means the parasites will rise to take over.

Additionally, the western stupidity of tying everything to high flown abstractions, i.e. universal law and principles, is both idiotic and impossible. History demands the intervention of the intellect, i.e. the mind of the monarch or the autocrat.

Thulean Friend , says: January 16, 2020 at 8:06 pm GMT
@nickels e was not particularly involved in planning the conquest and the company self-financed much of the early stages of the conquest itself, ironically enough often from wealthy Indians who were given attractive financing options. The company innovated many things we take for granted today, such as the joint stock company. Of course, the British state did step in eventually but by that time much of the groundwork had already been set. Adjusted for inflation, the EIC was many times larger than either Google or Apple is today at its peak, closer to 4+ trillion USD.

Too much of history blindly focuses on kings and rulers while ignoring many non-state actors.

nickels , says: January 16, 2020 at 9:01 pm GMT
@Thulean Friend Sounds interesting, thx.
'Why War' by Frederic Clemson Howe had a similar theme about how the 'flag followed the dollar' in the lead up to WWI.
Philip Owen , says: January 17, 2020 at 12:11 am GMT
@Thulean Friend money from private trading as company employees were allowed to do. The less rich one commanded three regiments of cavalry at the 3rd siege of Seringapatam. He was elected Prize Officer and thus had an extra share.

They returned and with other East India men built a canal to a coal mine they opened on the hill above an iron works eventually connecting Clydach Gorge to the sea thus launching the industrial revolution in South Wales. So there are very direct links between profits from trade and the industrial revolution. They fed off each other. South Wales at one time produced most of the world's copper. This was in great demand in India for making brass.

[Jan 18, 2020] Today's Russia is a product of several factors

Jan 18, 2020 | www.unz.com

Today's Russia is a product of several factors:

[Jan 18, 2020] "Trump didn't expect to win in the first place."

Jan 18, 2020 | www.moonofalabama.org

William Gruff , Jan 18 2020 12:18 utc | 127

Willy2 @115 "Trump didn't expect to win in the first place."

Correct. Trump was just a stalking horse for the Democrats to clear the field on the Republican side for Clinton. But your follow-on assumption, that people voted for the deliberately repulsive stalking horse because they are prejudiced deplorables, is based upon the same false assumptions that underlay the choice to proffer a repulsive figure as the alternative in the first place in order to lock in Clinton's victory.

There are a number of reasons people voted for Trump, but one of the bigger reasons for many was because they recognized that Trump was put on the ballot to force them to vote for Clinton. Their vote for Trump was this a kind of "Don't tell me what to do!" reaction.

Perhaps a bigger cause for the support Trump received is a building backlash against political correctness, identity politics, and the general infantilization of American society. For example, trying to tell people that the reason for the problems in life of frustrated obese women is not because they strap on the turbo feedbag full of Cheetos but because Joe Sixpack has a preference for Bernini babes rather than Botero blimps just doesn't sit well with some people. Trump's crude bluntness, which did repel some people as intended, was seen by millions of others as a refreshing honesty that is altogether absent from contemporary American politics. Telling people who are barely scraping by with gig work not far above minimum wage that a flood of cheap labor from abroad isn't going to shift the wage scale down contradicts what they can plainly see with their own eyes. That doesn't sit well with many Americans either. Again, Trump was telling truths that anyone can see as truths, even if they are unpleasant ones that "proper" people know shouldn't be said out loud, while even Sanders, the best Democrat option by miles, prevaricates on the issue.

It is surprising that so many people still fail to understand what "went wrong" with the brilliant plan to install Clinton. It wasn't racism. Many Trump voters voted for Obama in 2008. It wasn't sexism. Jill Stein was many of these voters' second choice. It wasn't xenophobia. Few Trump voters live in white gated communities.

[Jan 18, 2020] I don't know if Trump is in fact overplayed by the Israelis or, worst, being deceived and goaded by them.

Jan 18, 2020 | www.unz.com

Swedish Family , says: Show Comment January 3, 2020 at 9:13 pm GMT

@Interested Bystander 2020

However, it is hard to miss Trump's style over the past three years, a consistently unconventional approach to problems that often seems illogical and rushed at the first glance, but upon a closer examination, his approaches usually have their own logic and underlying motivation that, on occasions, could be construed as the result of a broader strategic and tactical consideration.

I once believed this, but Michael Wolff's books quickly dispelled that fantasy. Here's what strategy meant during the campaign:

It was during Trump's early intelligence briefings, held soon after he captured the nomination, that alarm signals first went off among his new campaign staff: he seemed to lack the ability to take in third-party information. Or maybe he lacked the interest; whichever, he seemed almost phobic about having formal demands on his attention. He stonewalled every written page and balked at every explanation. "He's a guy who really hated school," said Bannon. "And he's not going to start liking it now."

[ ]

One of the ways to establish what Trump wanted and where he stood and what his underlying policy intentions were -- or at least the intentions that you could convince him were his -- came to involve an improbably close textual analysis of his largely off-the-cuff speeches, random remarks, and reflexive tweets during the campaign.

Bannon doggedly went through the Trump oeuvre highlighting possible insights and policy proscriptions. Part of Bannon's authority in the new White House was as keeper of the Trump promises, meticulously logged onto the white board in his office. Some of these promises Trump enthusiastically remembered making, others he had little memory of, but was happy to accept that he had said it. Bannon acted as disciple and promoted Trump to guru -- or inscrutable God.

Fire and Fury (Michael Wolff, 2018)

And here's Trump readying himself for the notorious Helsinki summit with Putin back in 2018:

On Friday, July 13, three days before the Helsinki summit, the president and his team arrived late in the day at Trump Turnberry golf resort in Scotland, after passing on their way from the airport cow pastures and cheering citizens -- but no protesters.

Mike Pompeo and John Bolton were carrying copious briefing books. This was meant to be a weekend of preparation interspersed with golf. John Kelly, Sarah Huckabee Sanders, Bill Shine, and several other aides had come along, too.

Saturday was sunny and in the mid-seventies, with nothing on the agenda except golf. But by now a few protesters had made their way to Turnberry. "No Trump, No KKK, No Racist USA," shouted a small group of them during the president's afternoon golf game.

Trump, energized by his NATO and UK meetings -- "we roughed them up" -- was in no mood to prepare for his Putin meeting. Even his typical, exceedingly casual level of preparation -- prep masked as gossip -- wasn't happening. Pompeo and Bolton reduced the boxed briefing binders to a one-pager. The president wouldn't focus on it.

He was fine. And why shouldn't he be? He had walked into his meeting with Kim unable to pick out North Korea on a map, but it didn't matter. He was in charge, a strong man making peace.

Don't box me in , he told his advisers. I need to be open , he kept repeating, as though this was a therapeutic process. Pompeo and Bolton urgently pressed him about the basic talking points for the summit, now just hours away -- but nothing doing.

The next morning he played golf, and then it started to rain.

Siege (Michael Wolff, 2019)

[Jan 18, 2020] Minutes before the crash caused by a missile strike, the AI pilots had also heard the controller give the Malaysian aircraft MH17 what is called "a direct routing". This permits an aircraft to fly straight, instead of tracking the regular route which is generally a zig-zag track that goes from one ground-based navigation aid or way point to another.

Jan 18, 2020 | www.unz.com

barr , says: Show Comment January 16, 2020 at 5:48 pm GMT

@JimDandy Hpw did the instruction to "Fly direct" prove fatal to MH 17

MUMBAI: The ministry of civil aviation's claim that there was no Air India flight near the ill-fated Malaysia Airlines Boeing 777 when it was shot down over Ukraine on Thursday appears misleading.
An Air India Dreamliner flight going from Delhi to Birmingham was in fact less than 25km away from the Malaysian aircraft,

Minutes before the crash caused by a missile strike, the AI pilots had also heard the controller give the Malaysian aircraft MH17 what is called "a direct routing". This permits an aircraft to fly straight, instead of tracking the regular route which is generally a zig-zag track that goes from one ground-based navigation aid or way point to another. "Direct routing saves fuel and time and is preferred by pilots. In this case, it proved fatal," said an airline source.

https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/Air-India-flight-was-90-seconds-away-when-missile-struck-Malaysia-Airlines-Flight-MH17/articleshowprint/38702536.cms

1 Was India pressurized to deny the close proximity and 2 was it under pressure to deny that it heard the controller giving the instruction to MH 17????

[Jan 18, 2020] Diaspora in the USA has an outsized influence on how their host country thinks of its interests in their regions of birth

Jan 18, 2020 | www.unz.com

wedish Family , says: Show Comment January 3, 2020 at 11:10 pm GMT

@AP

1. The interests of these countries may be aligned.

2. Even if the immigrant may be mistaken, if his belief is sincere he may still provide valuable contact, intelligence, etc.

This is a very naive idea of how perceived "national interests" form. In real life, highly-motivated groups of immigrants will have an outsized influence on how their host country thinks of its interests in their regions of birth. This is basically a geopolitical example of Nassim Taleb's minority rule .

United States is especially vulnerable to such subversion since much of its conception of itself and its place in the world centers on elastic and easily abused ideas like freedom and human rights .

[Jan 18, 2020] Who Targeted Ukraine Airlines Flight 752 Iran Shot It Down But There May Be More to the Story by Philip Giraldi

Jan 18, 2020 | www.unz.com

What seems to have been a case of bad judgments and human error does, however, include some elements that have yet to be explained. The Iranian missile operator reportedly experienced considerable "jamming" and the planes transponder switched off and stopped transmitting several minutes before the missiles were launched . There were also problems with the communication network of the air defense command, which may have been related.

The electronic jamming coming from an unknown source meant that the air defense system was placed on manual operation, relying on human intervention to launch. The human role meant that an operator had to make a quick judgment in a pressure situation in which he had only moments to react. The shutdown of the transponder, which would have automatically signaled to the operator and Tor electronics that the plane was civilian, instead automatically indicated that it was hostile. The operator, having been particularly briefed on the possibility of incoming American cruise missiles, then fired.

The two missiles that brought the plane down came from a Russian-made system designated SA-15 by NATO and called Tor by the Russians. Its eight missiles are normally mounted on a tracked vehicle. The system includes both radar to detect and track targets as well as an independent launch system, which includes an Identification Friend or Foe (IFF) system functionality capable of reading call signs and transponder signals to prevent accidents. Given what happened on that morning in Tehran, it is plausible to assume that something or someone deliberately interfered with both the Iranian air defenses and with the transponder on the airplane, possibly as part of an attempt to create an aviation accident that would be attributed to the Iranian government.

The SA-15 Tor defense system used by Iran has one major vulnerability. It can be hacked or "spoofed," permitting an intruder to impersonate a legitimate user and take control. The United States Navy and Air Force reportedly have developed technologies "that can fool enemy radar systems with false and deceptively moving targets." Fooling the system also means fooling the operator. The Guardian has also reported independently how the United States military has long been developing systems that can from a distance alter the electronics and targeting of Iran's available missiles.

The same technology can, of course, be used to alter or even mask the transponder on a civilian airliner in such a fashion as to send false information about identity and location. The United States has the cyber and electronic warfare capability to both jam and alter signals relating to both airliner transponders and to the Iranian air defenses. Israel presumably has the same ability. Joe Quinn at Sott.net also notes an interested back story to those photos and video footage that have appeared in the New York Times and elsewhere showing the Iranian missile launch, the impact with the plane and the remains after the crash, to include the missile remains. They appeared on January 9 th , in an Instagram account called ' Rich Kids of Tehran '. Quinn asks how the Rich Kids happened to be in "a low-income housing estate on the city's outskirts [near the airport] at 6 a.m. on the morning of January 8 th with cameras pointed at the right part of the sky in time to capture a missile hitting a Ukrainian passenger plane ?"

Put together the Rich Kids and the possibility of electronic warfare and it all suggests a premeditated and carefully planned event of which the Soleimani assassination was only a part. There have been riots in Iran subsequent to the shooting down of the plane, blaming the government for its ineptitude. Some of the people in the street are clearly calling for the goal long sought by the United States and Israel, i.e. "regime change." If nothing else, Iran, which was widely seen as the victim in the killing of Soleimani, is being depicted in much of the international media as little more than another unprincipled actor with blood on its hands. There is much still to explain about the downing of Ukrainian International Airlines Flight 752.

Philip M. Giraldi, Ph.D., is Executive Director of the Council for the National Interest, a 501(c)3 tax deductible educational foundation (Federal ID Number #52-1739023) that seeks a more interests-based U.S. foreign policy in the Middle East.


AnonStarter , says: Show Comment January 15, 2020 at 10:45 pm GMT

Given this news, any impartial observer would at least entertain the possibility of its truth, particularly given the lengthy track record of the United States/Israel in perpetrating such crimes.

It's a good litmus test for determining where one's sentiment lies. Even "alternative media" aren't likely to touch this story.

Bravo to Mr. Giraldi and Mr. Unz.

Sean , says: Show Comment January 15, 2020 at 11:10 pm GMT
The Iranian Ambassador to Britain, Hamid Baeidinejad said in an interview on the UK Channel 4 news hours ago that although Iran had needed time to determine what had happened, it had now accepted responsibility, would pay compensation, and the people who fired on the jet will be put on trial.

If nothing else, Iran, which was widely seen as the victim in the killing of Soleimani, is being depicted in much of the international media as little more than another unprincipled actor with blood on its hands.

Both Trump and the Iranian regime have good domestic disquiet reason to rethink the confrontational policy each are pursuing. Iran and the US could get closer over this. I think the predictable unpredictability of assassination and catastrophic loss of life events makes false flagging them of dubious value.

Why did I rob banks? Because I enjoyed it. I loved it. I was more alive when I was inside a bank, robbing it, than at any other time in my life. I enjoyed everything about it so much that one or two weeks later I'd be out looking for the next job. But to me the money was the chips, that's all.

(Sutton W, Linn E: Where the Money Was: The Memoirs of a Bank Robber. Viking Press (1976), p. 160)

I suppose it is possible there are people who get addicted to false flagging others' deaths. If half of what is said in this site is true, Mossad really needs to set up a 12 step program.

onebornfree , says: Website Show Comment January 15, 2020 at 11:49 pm GMT
" .the big question which many people on social media are asking is: why was this "videographer" standing in a derelict industrial area outside Tehran at around six o'clock in the morning with a mobile phone camera training on a fixed angle to the darkened sky? The airliner is barely visible, yet the sky-watching person has the camera pointed and ready to film a most dramatic event, seconds before it happened. That strongly suggests, foreknowledge."

"Iran Jet Disaster Setup – Who Is the Mysterious Videographer?:"
https://ahtribune.com/world/north-africa-south-west-asia/iran/3809-jet-disaster-setup.html

And I would add: how do we know the video[s] are even genuine? [Answer: we don't, it is only an unproven assumption at this time].

Regards, onebornfree

anonymous [150] Disclaimer , says: Show Comment January 16, 2020 at 12:36 am GMT
Hmmm, cameras waiting beforehand, transponders not working. Sort of sounds like 9-11, doesn't it?
The Alarmist , says: Show Comment January 16, 2020 at 3:01 am GMT

The Iranian missile operator reportedly experienced considerable "jamming" and the planes transponder switched off and stopped transmitting several minutes before the missiles were launched.

I vaguely recall reports of transponder issues arising during the shootdown of MH-17.

anonymous [405] Disclaimer , says: Show Comment January 16, 2020 at 3:49 am GMT

Civilian passenger flights were still departing and arriving in Tehran, almost certainly an error in judgment on the part of the airport authorities. Inexplicably, civilian aircraft continued to take off and land even after Flight 752 was shot down.

The Iranian government is blameworthy for keeping planes in the air either because of diabolical reasons (delays a counter attack) or economic (nearly $1 billion a year in overflight fees).

However, the pilots of the airliners that took over during the morning between the first missile hitting Iraq and the downing of the Ukrainian airliner were dumb and irresponsible.

Anon [230] Disclaimer , says: Show Comment January 16, 2020 at 4:10 am GMT

The system includes both radar to detect and track targets as well as an independent launch system, which includes an Identification Friend or Foe (IFF) system functionality capable of reading call signs and transponder signals to prevent accidents.

Clearly you have no clue how an IFF operates and that no commercial airliner even has an IFF on board. Every commercial aircraft looks like the enemy to this SAM operator.

Also, you need to explain how spoofing a RADAR which creates a false track would cause the shoot down. The missile would simply target the false track instead of the real aircraft.

You also need to explain how an old SAM missile site can be hacked or spoofed to shoot down a civilian airliner. Especially this old one which has no Mode-S or ADS-B capability and only radio communication capability.

As Mark Twain said, it's better to keep your mouth shut and let people think you are an idiot rather than open it and remove all doubt.

Anon [200] Disclaimer , says: Show Comment January 16, 2020 at 5:20 am GMT
Even if this was a clear mistake on Iran's part, the US and Israel still have blood on their hands for the downing of this plane. The missiles were launched in response to a targeted killing of an Iranian general. If that didn't happen, these missiles never would've been launched.

Trump-Pence-Pompeo-Kushner-Netanyahu are ultimately responsible for these 176 lives lost. I suspect MBS is also part of the scheme. It was his fake peace offering that lured Soleimani to Iraq in the first place. I'm with Trudeau on this.

Onlooker , says: Show Comment January 16, 2020 at 5:22 am GMT
@Anon Before calling someone an idiot it is better to follow Mark Twain's advice yourself. A more careful reading reveals no claim that IFF was onstalled on the airliner. The commenter does speculate that possible spoofing involved a false attribution of a real airliner not the creation of a false airliner and radar track. Perhaps you are familiar with "old" electronic countermeasures and not with the "new", "top secret" and spiffy versions hinted at by the U.S. military?
AnonStarter , says: Show Comment January 16, 2020 at 6:30 am GMT
@Quartermaster /An Airliner can not legally launch with deadlined transponder, so the claim that it quit transmitting "several" minutes earlier would have placed it on the ground when it quit./

From the SoTT link :

As it climbed and reached 4,600ft above ground level, the plane's transponder suddenly stopped working at about 6.14am, 2 minutes or so after take off . [emphasis added]

The plane was already airborne when the transponder stopped working.

AnonStarter , says: Show Comment January 16, 2020 at 6:45 am GMT
@Onlooker Less than twenty replies into the thread and we've already got two individuals attempting to distort the facts. Here's the key link that readers should visit:

https://www.sott.net/article/427303-Was-Iranian-Missile-Operator-Tricked-Into-Shooting-Down-The-Ukrainian-Airlines-Plane-Over-Tehran

Compare the information there against what the detractors say here.

Daniel Rich , says: Show Comment January 16, 2020 at 7:16 am GMT
@Quartermaster

The airliner had not been in the air long at all when it was shot down. An Airliner can not legally launch with deadlined transponder, so the claim that it quit transmitting "several" minutes earlier would have placed it on the ground when it quit.

The flight departed Tehran Imam Khomeini International Airport at 02:42 UTC ( 06:12 local time ) and the last ADS-B signal was received by the Flightradar24 network at 02:44 UTC( 06:14 local time) . According to the report the aircraft climbed to 8000 feet and turned right back toward the airport and crashed at 02:48 UTC ( 06:18 local time ) -- four minutes after the last ADS-B signal was received by the Flightradar24 network. – Source Flight Radar 24

Mr. Giraldi's original claim:

The Iranian missile operator reportedly experienced considerable "jamming" and the planes transponder switched off and stopped transmitting several minutes before the missiles were launched. There were also problems with the communication network of the air defense command, which may have been related.

4 minutes after the transponders were switches off, the plane crashed .

Without [proper] access to the FDR and CVR, it's impossible to determine when the plane was hit and how long it took to crash, exactly.

The plane was only flying at 8,000 feet [its normal {flight} ceiling is 30,000 feet and above], so it's speed relatively low [cruise speed is between about 400 and 500 knots (460 – 575 mph / 740 – 930 kph), but the Ukrainian plane was still climbing] and the fall back to Earth relatively quick.

On the clip where the plane is on fire and finally crashes, the downward angle looked to be about 25 to 30 %, which is relatively steep. Time of downfall can be calculated when the relative data is available.

Therefore, Mr Giraldi's claim " several minutes before the missiles were launched " is technically correct , until proven wrong by data from the FDR and CVR,

utu , says: Show Comment January 16, 2020 at 7:31 am GMT
The Tor system is too primitive to be hacked. It is a stand alone, autonomous and mostly analog system. The radar signals it generates are shown on analog tube-screens.
Ghali , says: Show Comment January 16, 2020 at 8:07 am GMT
Interesting theory by P. Giraldi. However, I am very surprised that Israel/Mossad role in these acts of terrorism never mentioned. We know that Trump is a Zionist servant and acts on instructions from his jewish fananciers. We know, Trump is incapable of serious thinking.

Here is a good article with some interesting observations:
https://sputniknews.com/columnists/202001131078026961-iran-jet-disaster-setup/

GMC , says: Show Comment January 16, 2020 at 8:10 am GMT
The Iranians took the hit because their missiles took out the airliner. And then, they could stop the Western media crying for the next 6 mos. and this gave them time to bring in other neutral investigators to look at the evidence and come up with logical scenarios. There is a reason the black boxes weren't given to any one else to own – because they still remember the scam investigation of MH 17. I f lew planes for over 20 yrs – Every controlled/radared airport would ask me to turn on my transponder if it wasn't on – Everyone of them. This plane not only came from Ukraine but was an easy target for a hack from any of the big Intel countries. The BIG STORY here is that most every plane flying today – can have the same type consequences!!! because of the Western War Machine.
AZ , says: Show Comment January 16, 2020 at 10:08 am GMT
Ask the Israelis. They are experts in these operations. The blood of the innocent on their heads

R D Steele has some interesting thoughts as well:

https://phibetaiota.net/2020/01/robert-steele-world-war-iii-was-ukrainian-flight-ps752-a-western-false-flag-combining-remote-hijacking-and-transponder-disabling-to-trigger-two-tor-m1-missiles/

lavoisier , says: Website Show Comment January 16, 2020 at 12:01 pm GMT
@Anon

Trump-Pence-Pompeo-Kushner-Netanyahu are ultimately responsible for these 176 lives lost. I suspect MBS is also part of the scheme. It was his fake peace offering that lured Soleimani to Iraq in the first place. I'm with Trudeau on this.

Trudeau showed some real courage criticizing Trump and his terrible decisions.

More Western allies have to stand up to the Zionist stooge and call him out on his treachery and stupidity.

UncommonGround , says: Show Comment January 16, 2020 at 12:23 pm GMT
@bobhammer

The Democrats have gone too far.

I believe that P.G. has supported Trump until recently.

Besides, you could get some general information about such themes if you read articles like the following:

There's No Evidence Iran Is Responsible for the Deaths of Hundreds of Americans
by Stephen Zunes

https://progressive.org/dispatches/-no-evidence-iran-is-responsible-for-the-deaths-of-hundreds-of-americans-zunes-200107/

How the President Became a Drone Operator
by Allegra Harpootlian

https://www.counterpunch.org/2020/01/16/how-the-president-became-a-drone-operator/

lavoisier , says: Website Show Comment January 16, 2020 at 12:32 pm GMT
@bobhammer Stop drinking the Kool-Aid. Turn off Fox News now.

We are not always the good guys and we are up to our necks in deceit, plunder, and evil. Our actions have harmed millions of people around the world and it has to stop.

It is time for more self-reflection as individuals and as a nation; and it is long past time for us to be comfortable with lies.

Anonymous [401] Disclaimer , says: Show Comment January 16, 2020 at 2:22 pm GMT
@bobhammer The "uninterruptible" autopilot can be activated – either by pilots or by on-board sensors, or by radio or satellite link<= connected to controls at the remote end. Government agencies, quasi government agencies, military brats and probably the entire group of privately operated NGOs and private party mobsters (bankers, corporations and private military armies and privateers) at the remote end, can take over control of in-flight Aircraft, and fly it, land it, take it off, whatever, even if the pilot sitting in the cockpit objects. and does all he can to retrieve control from the remote operator.

Several comments report says interrupt able remote control, allows, persons on the ground, to take from the pilot in a flying airplane, control of the airplane the pilot is suppose to be flying, in situations for example when terrorist are in the cockpit. I have not read the manufacture's literature nor do I have personal knowledge abut the equipment list of any of these aircraft, the list suggest they are all aircraft, not only equipped with the UAP but that they were all aircraft made by the same manufacturer. I am merely repeating what was on stated as fact on a website I visited.

Many are looking for proof that remotely equipped uninterruptible autopilots are being used as Remote Control weaponized drones . Imagine an pilot, located on the ground in London or somewhere parks his /her remote ground to air control vehicle and takes over flight control including turns on/off the transponder [<=which tells everyone where the plane is during its flight] on a plane that is flying, landing or taking off from say the Tehran airport in Iran?

My personal experience is that it generally takes less than 2 minutes after a transponder is turned off during a planes flight, before fighter jets arrive to escort the transponder disabled plane; so the whole system that protects civilian aircraft, and allows the military to know the aircraft is civilian, is dependent on the Transponder, installed in the airplane, to continuously squawk during flight, its exact position so that everyone can identify the flight, and track the aircraft during its flight. Every land based control tower, ATC control system center and military installation depends on that airborne squawking transponder to track the en-route progress of commercial and private aircraft flights from take off to landing.

Another comment made on that list referred to above claimed Uninterruptible Auto Pilot [UAP] equipped aircraft have been involved in unexplained flight accident/disappearance events (I have no personal knowledge about the equipment in these aircraft, I just repeated here what someone else said elsewhere, please verify these claims yourself or provide verification ) .

(4 @911) <=UAP allows pilot-less flights, no pilot need board the plane for its flight.
(PS752) (transponder turned off, destroyed by confused ground defense crews)
MH370 (vanished into thin air)
MH17 (had its flight path altered.)
Eyes focus on Uninterruptible Auto Pilot (UAP) .. to explain recent Tehran 160 person disaster?

This is really something to think about? Always the question has been how did four military officers from Iran, trained a few weeks in Florida to fly jets, manage to get through four differently located pilot screening TSA gates to fly the aircraft and passenger into the 9/11 events. Conspiracy theories suggest since no pilot is needed, there were no pilots for TSA to screening. Remote control on the ground flew the aircraft to their destinations.

Trinity , says: Show Comment January 16, 2020 at 2:51 pm GMT
"By way of deception thou shalt do war."

Just about says it all doesn't it? What kind of people are we dealing with here? Of course only the morons out there are still being fooled by these kind of false flags. Even in the year 2020 these same morons still believe ZOG's 9-11 fairy tale and label any other theory as a "conspiracy." Speaking of conspiracies the biggest idiots out there, even bigger than the ones who believe ZOG's narrative or those type who believe the total wacktard stuff put out by ZIO controlled disinfo puppets like Alex Jones.

Ukrainian commercial airline? What other nation besides Iran does ZOG have it in for? Is it Russia?

War by deception? HARDLY to anyone with two brain cells left. These fools have been caught before, they aren't that clever. What they are is protected by a syndicate of bought and paid for politicians. They were caught attacking the USS Liberty, they were caught bombing American and British installations in Egypt, the Rosenbergs and Pollard were nailed, but of course despite all of this, America and her leaders continued the value Israel as a friend and an ally. With a friend like Israel, who needs enemies. Then of course we have the story of our 5 little dancing Israelis apprehended in NYC after being observed dancing and celebrating the WTC towers collapsing. So you mean a group of Israelis from Israel, nation that is ALLEGEDLY "friends" with America and America think it is hilarious and worth celebrating when America is attacked and thousands are burned alive or jump to their death from hundreds of feet above the street?? Of course "our" media quickly exonerated the celebrating Israelis and buried that story faster than your average house cat buries his own turds.

ZOG really thinks the average American has the IQ of a monkey. Even after the WMD caca they still think you people will believe anything they tell you to believe. The sad part is they are right about that with the majority of the population.

Pindos , says: Show Comment January 16, 2020 at 4:01 pm GMT
@Anon Wrong anon

Identification, friend or foe (IFF) is a radar-based identification system designed for command and control. It uses a transponder that listens for an interrogation signal and then sends a response that identifies the broadcaster. It enables military and civilian air traffic control interrogation systems to identify aircraft, vehicles or forces as friendly and to determine their bearing and range from the interrogator. IFF may be used by both military and civilian aircraft.

unit472 , says: Show Comment January 16, 2020 at 4:37 pm GMT
If such a capability exists would the US reveal and use it in such a minor circumstance. Occam's razor suggests this was just another case of 'better safe than sorry' during a time of military tensions. Not a whole lot different than the Vincennes shootdown of an Iranian airliner that came too close during a military confrontation in the Gulf.

I would hate to know how many 'friendly' aircraft were shot down by over zealous AAA gunners in WW2 but it wasn't just a handful.

scrub , says: Show Comment January 16, 2020 at 5:24 pm GMT
Anybody who thinks that US-Israel wouldn't have been capable of staging such a horrific event as the shooting down of the airliner by Iran hasn't been following Whitney Webb's continuing articles which are available right here on UNZ. Israel seems to have insinuated itself into about every computer security program worldwide.

Webb's article mentions large scale defense contractor Dell Computer's close connection to the Israeli government. Dell computer head Michael Dell has personally made large contributions to that curious "charity" called The Friends of The Israeli Defense Forces as has Larry Ellison, head or Oracle Software. Interestingly enough, neither of them have made correspondingly large contributions to American veterans however.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Friends_of_the_Israel_Defense_Forces

Michael Dell is probably one of the biggest (or the biggest) single contributors to the Republicans from Texas, home of Dell computer. Larry Ellison (also a large government computer contractor) is also one of the Republican Party's biggest contributors.

Ellison's $5.5 million dollar contribution to the Republican is dwarfed however, by his recent contributions to The Friends of the Israeli Defense Forces which seem to total (as of today) $31 million (or more).

https://www.timesofisrael.com/record-53-8-million-raised-for-idf-soldiers-at-beverly-hills-gala/

Are both men and their companies security risks? Is there any doubt of this or are contribution to charity connected to a foreign army now simply to be considered as being benign and innocent.

anon [230] Disclaimer , says: Show Comment January 16, 2020 at 5:35 pm GMT
@Pindos Wrong anon

Identification, friend or foe (IFF) is a radar-based identification system designed for command and control. It uses a transponder that listens for an interrogation signal and then sends a response that identifies the broadcaster. It enables military and civilian air traffic control interrogation systems to identify aircraft, vehicles or forces as friendly and to determine their bearing and range from the interrogator. IFF may be used by both military and civilian aircraft.

Your Wikipedia snippet is absolutely incorrect . IFF is only used for Military Aircraft. If you want to prove me wrong:

Provide a link to any civilian transponder with IFF capability
Provide a link to any civilian aircraft Minimum Equipment List that requires an IFF

Rurik , says: Show Comment January 16, 2020 at 5:38 pm GMT
@unit472

Vincennes shootdown of an Iranian airliner that came too close during a military confrontation in the Gulf.

Doesn't it rile you, as a U.S. veteran, that American soldiers are dying in treasonous service to an enemy nation?

Doesn't it bother you in the least, that Americans are on the hook for untold trillions of dollars, so they can slaughter innocent people, thousands of miles away, whose only "crime" is that a certain shitty little country, wants to see them all sent reeling into the stone age, (which is exactly what they want for you too).

Have y0u ever bothered to notice just exactly whom it is that is driving all the liberal-progressive shit we all see daily, with the ubiquitous homomania and Hollywood sewage force-injected into America's culture?

I see you occasionally speak against that stuff, but then when it comes to American soldiers dying on behalf of those rats, there you are, defending the narrative of Iran as bad guys.

How many Iranians do you see pumping Hollywood sewage into America's veins?

How many Iranians do you see on Capital Hill, demanding Trump and all his Deplorables are irredeemably racists? And need to have their guns taken away?

How many Iranians do you see at Goldman Sachs, (and the other 'Too big to fail Banksters) looting the country dry?

How many Iranians do you see in our universities, force-feeding America's youth the progressive-liberal monkey shit, they're paying to consume daily?

You'd have to be very myopic not to notice who it is behind America's depraved descent into cultural and spiritual guano. (not to mention the Eternal Wars, that only an imbecile could pretend not to notice ((who)) are behind them).

And I have a clue for you, it isn't the Iranians. In fact, they had a nice good taste of ((Western)) culture under the Shah, and they decided they'd rather not see their women whored out, and their children spiritually dead husks.

It'd be good if people could lift the veils they willfully allow to cover their own eyes, in some kind of misguided machismo about how tough "our" military are, as they're killing and dying on behalf of their worst enemy.

barr , says: Show Comment January 16, 2020 at 5:48 pm GMT
@JimDandy Hpw did the instruction to "Fly direct" prove fatal to MH 17

MUMBAI: The ministry of civil aviation's claim that there was no Air India flight near the ill-fated Malaysia Airlines Boeing 777 when it was shot down over Ukraine on Thursday appears misleading.
An Air India Dreamliner flight going from Delhi to Birmingham was in fact less than 25km away from the Malaysian aircraft,

Minutes before the crash caused by a missile strike, the AI pilots had also heard the controller give the Malaysian aircraft MH17 what is called "a direct routing". This permits an aircraft to fly straight, instead of tracking the regular route which is generally a zig-zag track that goes from one ground-based navigation aid or way point to another. "Direct routing saves fuel and time and is preferred by pilots. In this case, it proved fatal," said an airline source.

https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/Air-India-flight-was-90-seconds-away-when-missile-struck-Malaysia-Airlines-Flight-MH17/articleshowprint/38702536.cms

1 Was India pressurized to deny the close proximity and 2 was it under pressure to deny that it heard the controller giving the instruction to MH 17????

Saggy , says: Website Show Comment January 16, 2020 at 6:09 pm GMT
@Anon http://www.dean-boys.com/extras/iff/iffqa.html

FAA regulations require that all aircraft, military or civilian, flying at an altitude of 10,000 feet or higher in U.S. controlled airspace, must be equipped with an operating IFF transponder system capable of automatic altitude reporting (this is the reason that two of the modes are used by both military and civilian aircraft).

So, did the Ukrainian plane have an IFF transponder or not? Ref?

Marvin Sandnes , says: Show Comment January 16, 2020 at 6:52 pm GMT
The guy with the camera aimed up into a dark sky on that morning worked for a Saudi Arabia news service. From the "grayzone" https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EBGw5GMXb4c&feature=em-uploademail
wdg , says: Show Comment January 16, 2020 at 6:58 pm GMT
Cui bono? Israel and its NeoCon fifth column operating in the US and throughout the western world.
Iris , says: Show Comment January 16, 2020 at 7:01 pm GMT
@Quartermaster

what Giraldi has published doesn't even rise to the level of the most idiotic conspiracy theory one can concoct.

It happened only a few months ago that an Israeli jet violated Syria's airspace and deliberately sheltered behind a Russian Iliouchine IL-20 to get it shot down by Syrian air defence.

It was so very clearly and simply explained by the Russian Chief of Staff than any imbecile could understand it; the idiot is definitely you.

https://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-45556290

A123 , says: Show Comment January 16, 2020 at 7:02 pm GMT
@Saggy I believe you are correct.

https://www.raytheon.com/capabilities/products/iff

My understanding is:

A civilian transponder will respond to almost any inquiry (or even a non-coded radar pulse):
-- Standard civilian transponder code = USA military Mode 3.
-- Standard civilian transponder altitude reporting = USA military Mode C.

To reduce detectability in combat, the pilot can change the setting on a Military IFF system to only squawk when a correctly coded interrogation signal is recieved.

Saggy , says: Website Show Comment January 16, 2020 at 7:28 pm GMT
@Saggy Moon Of Alabama has the story –

https://www.moonofalabama.org/2020/01/was-the-shootdown-of-the-ukrainian-airplane-near-tehran-really-a-mistake.html

The Boeing jet broadcast the usual civil ADS-B signal but one has to expect that a U.S. cruise missile can and would do the same.

although 'one can expect ' seems like one hell of an assumption.

Frederick V. Reed , says: Show Comment January 16, 2020 at 7:30 pm GMT
Transponders are turned on and off with switches in the cockpit. Is Giraldi suggesting that this transponder was equipped to be controlled from outside? Source of assertion that transponder was turned off? Can he name any commercial transponder with this feature? Does he know anythng about elctroic warfare? This sounds like the birthing of a conspiracy theory.
Just passing through , says: Show Comment January 16, 2020 at 8:07 pm GMT
@DaveE The hilarious thing in Britain is that many people on the comments sections of MSM will talk about 'Asian' or more specifically 'Muslim' child rape gangs, because these gangs were heavily Muslim they can be referred to using the adjective 'Muslim'.

But when you point out that the ones beating the drums for war in Iran and who successfully plunged America and UK into a long a protracted war in the Middle East are mostly Jewish, as evidenced by this article in the Israeli newspaper Haaretz

they start getting all pissy, because of the Holocaust legend, Jews are now above scrutiny and Jewish power cannot be talked about. It is the slipperly slope fallacy, what is merely being advocated for here is not to trust a single thing that comes out of the mouth of a Jew regarding the Middle East as there is a clear conflict of interest, not genocide.

I also suspect that peoples understandable antagonism towards Muslims has somehow made them more sympathetic to Israel. Tommy Robinson is for example funded by rich Jews like Ezra Levant of Rebel Media and Robert J. Shillman – who sits on the board of Friends of Israel Defence Forces – shills for Israel. Now the Western goyim start frothing at the mouth when they hear Muslim and so think countries like Iran are evil and out to destory the West, a laughable claim.

Iris , says: Show Comment January 16, 2020 at 8:11 pm GMT
@Z-man

stupid Christian Zionist dogma

You don't have to apologise. Christian Zionists are no Christians; they are uncultured, criminal country-bumpkins utilised by their Zionist handlers to justify the destruction of the twice-millenary Christian Arab community.

Here is what real Christians think:
Mor Maurice Amsih, Syrian Orthodox Bishop of Euphrates, demonstrating against the murder of General Soleimani, calling Soleimani and his companions " martyrs " who are now " Saints in the Heavenly Kingdom" for their blood shed freeing the Syrian people from Zio-sponsored terrorists. [@ 0:25]

https://www.youtube.com/embed/1eH4djCP2mI?feature=oembed

Anonymous [230] Disclaimer , says: Show Comment January 16, 2020 at 8:18 pm GMT
@Saggy

Moon Of Alabama has the story –

https://www.moonofalabama.org/2020/01/was-the-shootdown-of-the-ukrainian-airplane-near-tehran-really-a-mistake.html

The Boeing jet broadcast the usual civil ADS-B signal but one has to expect that a U.S. cruise missile can and would do the same.

although 'one can expect ' seems like one hell of an assumption.

This is absolutely irrelevant since the Iranian SAM missile launcher is so old it can not even detect and decode ADS-B signals. Note that the requirement for ADS-B transponders only came into effect this year .

AnonStarter , says: Show Comment January 16, 2020 at 8:22 pm GMT
Some additional information to consider:

IRGC Releases Details of Accidental Downing of Ukrainian Plane

https://ifpnews.com/irgc-releases-details-of-accidental-downing-of-ukrainian-plane

By the account of Brigadier General Amir-Ali Hajizadeh:

1. Prior to the downing of the aircraft, Americans had threatened to hit 52 sites in Iran.
2. These threats placed Iran's air defense systems on the highest alert level.
3. There were reports that cruise missles had been fired at Iran.
4. In spite of IRGC requests that airspace be cleared of commercial flights, those requests were not met.
5. The air defense unit recognized Flight 752 as a cruise missle from a distance of 19 kilometers, but is still required to get approval to fire upon it.
6. When the operator attempts to get approval, he can not do so due to "disruption" of his communication system.
7. The operator is forced to make an independent decision in a 10 second window of time and fires upon the plane.

Russell Bentley , however, states that

1. the SA-15 system has an IFF interrogator built into its radar system,
2. Boeing 737 aircraft are equipped with two IFF transponders, which are set and activated prior to take off, and
3. it is possible for a plane to take off without an IFF transponder operating.
4. In spite of all this, the flight's recording on FLIGHTRADAR24.COM , proves that the transponder was on and working.
5. Even if there was no IFF signal, a SA-15/TOR M-1 operator could still determine the location, bearing, speed and size of the potential target.
6. The SA-15 also has an automatic all weather day/night NV/IR Electro Optical Targeting System (EOTS) used for target engagement and fire control by which the plane would have been easily identified.
7. Flight 752 should have been identifiable as a commercial airliner by its external lights alone.

From this information, he concludes that either there are traitors within Iran seeking to facilitate regime change or that the downing of Flight 752 was a false flag operation perpetrated by the usual suspects.

I'd like to see more information about this topic from those qualified to speak about it.

A123 , says: Show Comment January 16, 2020 at 9:29 pm GMT
@AnonStarter

2. These threats placed Iran's air defense systems on the highest alert level
7. The operator is forced to make an independent decision in a 10 second window of time and fires upon the plane.

How long were the operators on alert? Tension and sleep deprivation are a bad mix. This looks like the crew on the ground had seconds to make a decision, and in the rush got it wrong.

I'm not sure how anyone on the outside could tell if the operator made the launch by mistake or from ill intent. No doubt the crew will be given the Richard Jewell treatment in an attempt to deflect blame from the religious hierarchy.

anonymous [393] Disclaimer , says: Show Comment January 16, 2020 at 9:40 pm GMT
@AnonStarter

1. the SA-15 system has an IFF interrogator built into its radar system,

Correct

2. Boeing 737 aircraft are equipped with two IFF transponders, which are set and activated prior to take off, and

Incorrect The Boeing 737 aircrfat has two ATC Transponders only one of which is activated prior to takeoff. The second ATC transponder is only activated if the first one fails. An ATC Transponder is NOT an IFF transponder.

3. it is possible for a plane to take off without an IFF transponder operating.

Incorrect . A functioning ATC transponder is part the Boeing 737 Minimum Equipment List which is available here . The only way the Ukraine Air crew could have gotten around this requirement was to get prior permission from the Iranian Civil Aviation Authority and EVERY other country's Cicil Aviation Authority in its flight path which I can guarantee you would not be forthcoming.

5. Even if there was no IFF signal, a SA-15/TOR M-1 operator could still determine the location, bearing, speed and size of the potential target.

Incorrect The operator could determine range, range rate. and bearing if the transponder was not function.

6. The SA-15 also has an automatic all weather day/night NV/IR Electro Optical Targeting System (EOTS) used for target engagement and fire control by which the plane would have been easily identified.

The plane was at least 1.5 miles away (8000 ft altitude). You go get yourself a pair of Night Vision/Infra Red scopes and see how well you do identifying different aircraft from that distance

Just passing through , says: Show Comment January 16, 2020 at 10:12 pm GMT
@Ron Unz One good article to show people in relation to the Israel Lobby's influence on America's decision to go to war in Iraq is an article in Israeli newspaper Haaretz titled White Man's Burden which carries the following subheading;

The war in Iraq was conceived by 25 neoconservative intellectuals, most of them Jewish, who are pushing President Bush to change the course of history. Two of them, journalists William Kristol and Charles Krauthammer, say it's possible. But another journalist, Thomas Friedman (not part of the group), is skeptical.

This comes from a reputable newspaper from Israel so cannot be dismissed as the ravings of some neo-Nazis. I have found this to have the most success in getting people online to think about the Iraq War more, it is impossible for detractors to label a link to an Israeli newspaper article as "anti-Semitic" without looking absurd.

I would find the UN's review kind of hard to recommend to people in real life simple because of the provocative nature of the stories it runs. The American Pravda series is of course very informative but the articles require quite a bit of time to read through and check the hyperlinks within the article itself. Without sounding like someone with a superiority complex, most people cannot read this much information and grasp it. Many will not touch articles relating to Holocaust Denial or race.

But anyway, you sir are doing great work with the maintenance and story selection on this website and I wish you the best of luck in the future. It certainly has armed me with lots of information that I can use to counter mainstream narratives in a whole host of issues. Although my efforts in real life have not been very successful, I do seem to be getting some success in my cyber-activism on mainstream news websites, where I am able to provide a clear and cogent narrative with links to reputable websites and not come across as a nutjob who raves about da jooz .

Curmudgeon , says: Show Comment January 16, 2020 at 10:19 pm GMT
@Anon Sharpen your reading skills. Civilian aircraft have different frequency transponders than military aircraft. Flight plans are filed, and the transponder signals correspond to filed flight plans. When attacking, military craft turn off their transponders. No transponder signal = no corresponding flight plan = unfriendly aircraft.
There is no need to "spoof" anything, once the transponder stops signalling. That aside, I found it curious that this particular airplane was on its first flight after major maintenance. Who knows what was done in servicing. If the computer in the car you drive can be hijacked to cause sudden acceleration or brake failurs, an airplane's certainly can.
Curmudgeon , says: Show Comment January 16, 2020 at 10:22 pm GMT
@lavoisier Unfortunately, Trudeau is just a different sort of Zionist stooge. His mentor, Irwin Cotler, is popular enough in Israel to be President.

[Jan 18, 2020] Putin plants to prohibit dual citizens to serve in government

Highly recommended!
Jan 18, 2020 | www.unz.com

Peripatetic Commenter , says: Show Comment January 17, 2020 at 9:43 pm GMT

I don't think it will be long before we see Congress in the US calling for invasion of Russia on the grounds of a lack of diversity, lack of respect for LGBTP and so forth.

[Jan 18, 2020] Lukashenko wants the prices for oil and natural gas for Belarus to be the same as for Russian regions, but refuses to behave like a Russian region.

Jan 18, 2020 | www.unz.com

AnonFromTN , says: January 15, 2020 at 6:42 pm GMT

@Shitposter him some fighter planes for free and he will build an airbase of the Belarus army.
6. Belarus makes gasoline and other products from Russian oils and resells them at a huge profit. Besides, he wants to export it all via Baltic statelets, providing their ports business that Putin is taking away from them by building Russian deep-sea ports, like Ust-Luga.
7. Not to mention that he talks about 10 times more than is wise, saying mostly BS (the latter is natural for a moron).
There are many more, but these are enough to explain how most Russians feel about him. Belarus either gets rid of that idiot, or suffers because of his stupidity.

[Jan 18, 2020] Germany behaviour in Naftogas-Gasprom conflict makes zero sense unless you believe that Germany was acting as a proxy on behalf of a greater power

Jan 18, 2020 | www.unz.com

,

Thulean Friend , says: Show Comment December 23, 2019 at 5:34 am GMT
About this whole Ukraine-Russia gas transit thing that Felix is panicking about. It seems Germany had a key role in facilitating the deal.

However, that risk receded this week after Moscow and Kyiv concluded a landmark agreement that will ensure Russian gas continues to transit through Ukraine even after Nord Stream 2 is completed. Germany played a critical role in brokering the agreement and pressuring Russia to maintain Ukraine's transit status.

Why would Germany spend all this time and resources to construct these pipelines and then suddenly pressure Russia to maintain the transit fees? That makes zero sense unless you believe that Germany was acting as a proxy on behalf of a greater power. My pet theory: Germany most likely caved to US pressure and tried to triangulate at the last minute in a bid to stave off a larger German-US conflict.

Thulean Friend , says: Show Comment December 24, 2019 at 4:43 am GMT
@Swedish Family

What Germany wants, it seems to me, is (1) cheap energy for German industry, (2) a maximally weak Russian hand visavi Ukraine (which is now in effect a NATO/EU dependency), and (3) good enough relations with the Kremlin for Russia not to go rogue. Goals (1) and (3) obviously sit uneasily with goal (2), which is why we see so much back and forth.

I agree with (1) and (3) but I'd disagree over (2). I am not convinced Germany cares much about Ukraine's well-being. It is a very small economy (barely over 100 billion USD) and Germany's trade exposure to Ukraine is minimal. It isn't part of NATO, EU or any other major Western framework.

If Ukraine collapsed it would create significant refugee streams but Ukrainians are very easily assimilated into Western European countries, unlike Syrians or Turks, so even in a worse-case scenario the fallout would not be a major problem. If Croats or Serbs can mix into Germany easily, I don't see why Ukrainians would be a problem. Germany's shrinking work force would in fact even need such an influx. The only kink would be Russia's expanding borders if both Belarus+Ukraine was swallowed up but Germany probably would calculate that Russia wouldn't attack a NATO ally (and they wouldn't be wrong). I'm not saying Germany would want such an outcome, only that the worst-case scenario wouldn't be a big problem for them.

I think this has the fingerprints of the US all over it. Trump personally hates Ukraine, which has been documented in leaked documents during the impeachment process and major personalities of the Trumpist movement like Tucker Carlson openly cheers for Russia. So it wasn't Trump or his people who pushed for this but rather the permanent national-security state that was behind it and they are obsessed with keeping Russia down, or inventing fake Russiagate hoaxes to justify their paranoia. Germany made a 180 and suddenly pressured Russia to do something which Germany itself had no interest in keeping for the longest time. That suggests Germany caved to US pressure and tried to do a compromise. The US interest would be for NS2 to be scrapped completely. This was a German attempt at triangulating.

Either way, Ukraine got a big win purely because of Great Power politics over which they had no direct control.

[Jan 17, 2020] Russia fertility rate problem

Jan 17, 2020 | www.unz.com

Beckow says: January 15, 2020 at 7:12 pm GMT 200 Words @Anatoly Karlin All advanced countries need a no-children tax on free-loaders to survive. It is easy to implement and mostly fair (there are a few corner cases). It is not a penalty since it is a personal choice to be a parasite on the society and consume instead of raising children.

It can easily be implemented by including a number of children in retirement formula and in taxes. The no-kids parasites, the assorted barren women and gays, feminists and male scoundrels who abandon their families, would pay for the long-term support they get from the society – for the children that they will need to get pensions, medical care, etc Or we can just cut them off once they no longer work. No kids – no old-age benefits, unless you pay for them. This would be automatic in a normal society in the past.

Most modern people don't have children because they are lazy and because raising children is hard. It is a core role of any society to have families, so those who don't participate need to pay up.


Philip Owen , says: January 15, 2020 at 7:19 pm GMT

@Beckow The Soviet Union did have a tax on childless (or unmarried?) men for a while. It wasn't popular and didn't last.
Beckow , says: January 15, 2020 at 7:30 pm GMT
@Philip Owen opular with the parasites who have to pay, but all taxes are unpopular.

It is fundamentally the most fair way to handle generational issues – those who choose to be free-loaders, can't expect others' children to take care of them. This will happen regardless, all the pension obligations are imposed on people who never agreed to them, they will re-structure them in the future to benefit their own families.

In the West this is complicated by the diversity-migrant issue in the next generation – why should they pay for people who invited them for cheap labor? There is an assumption that they will pay, but why should they? This issue is coming.

AnonFromTN , says: January 15, 2020 at 8:08 pm GMT
@Philip Owen In Stalin's times that tax was imposed an all and gradually reduced with the number of children, so that only people who had three or more children did not pay "childless" tax. In Brezhnev's USSR that tax was on childless men and married childless women (on the assumption that marriage is male's choice, so a woman cannot be penalized when no one marries her).
inertial , says: January 15, 2020 at 8:23 pm GMT
@AnonFromTN Too many women whose potential husbands were killed in the war. Penalizing them with a tax on top of everything would've been heartless.
Abelard Lindsey , says: January 15, 2020 at 8:26 pm GMT
@Beckow The US already has this. One look at the IRS 1040 form and instructions will confirm this.
nonFromTN , says: January 15, 2020 at 8:30 pm GMT
@songbird Frankly, I don't know. I never lived in Stalin's times and never had enough siblings or three children. What I remember in the 1960s and 1970s, every school child in grade 1 (maybe 1 and 2) received a glass of free milk at school daily, and children from poorer families received free lunch (I never did).
Philip Owen , says: January 15, 2020 at 9:43 pm GMT
@AnonFromTN In the UK we had a small bottle, about a third of a pint, of free milk. The ones who needed it most never drank it. (My school was in a small town and contained all social classes). School meals were paid for by most but some had them free.

The Russian government has just introduced free school meals for all for certain years. I forget which.

[Jan 17, 2020] I knew that if you kept it up, Putler would get around to targeting you.

Jan 17, 2020 | www.unz.com

iffen , says: January 15, 2020 at 5:55 pm GMT

Ban PMs, Ministers, governors, some mayors and judges, from having second citizenships of foreign residencies; moreover, Presidential candidates should have been resident in Russia for 25 years (previously 10 years) and never had a foreign citizenship.

I knew that if you kept it up, Putler would get around to targeting you.

[Jan 16, 2020] Corrupt Clinton Democrats like Biden as just republican in disguise -- wolfs in sheep clothing

In this sense only Sanders, Warren and Tulsi are authentic democrats... Major Pete is definitely a wolf in sheep clothing.
Notable quotes:
"... Today's Democrats want to destroy those social programs you cite. They have wanted to destroy those social programs ever since President Clinton wanted to conspire with "Prime Minister" Gingrich to privatize Social Security. Luckily Monica Lewinsky saved us from that fate. ..."
"... A nominee Sanders would run on keeping Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid in existence. And he would mean it. A nominee Biden might pretend to say it. But he would conspire with the Republicans to destroy them all. ..."
Jan 16, 2020 | www.nakedcapitalism.com

drumlin woodchuckles , , January 14, 2020 at 7:13 pm

Today's Democrats want to destroy those social programs you cite. They have wanted to destroy those social programs ever since President Clinton wanted to conspire with "Prime Minister" Gingrich to privatize Social Security. Luckily Monica Lewinsky saved us from that fate.

A nominee Sanders would run on keeping Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid in existence. And he would mean it. A nominee Biden might pretend to say it. But he would conspire with the Republicans to destroy them all.

The ClintoBama Pelosicrats have no standing on which to pretend to support some very popular social programs and hope to be believed any longer. Maybe that is why they feel there is no point in even pretending any more.

drumlin woodchuckles , , January 14, 2020 at 7:22 pm

Bearing in mind the fact that the DemParty would prefer a Trump re-election over a Sanders election, I don't think anyone will be giving Trump any heave ho. The only potential nominee to even have a chance to defeat Trump would be Sanders. And if Sanders doesn't win on ballot number one, Sanders will not be permitted the nomination by an evil Trumpogenic DemParty elite.

Even if Sanders wins the nomination, the evil Trumpogenic Demparty leadership and the millions of Jonestown Clintobamas in the field will conspire against Sanders every way they feel they can get away with. The Clintobamas would prefer Trump Term Two over Sanders Term One. They know it, and the rest of us need to admit it.

If Sanders is nominated, he will begin the election campaign with a permanent deficit of 10-30 million Clintobama voters who will Never! Ever! vote for Sanders. Sanders will have to attract enough New Voters to drown out and wash away the 10-30 million Never Bernie clintobamas.

[Jan 16, 2020] Who Targeted Ukraine Airlines Flight 752 Iran Shot It Down But There May Be More to the Story by Philip Giraldi

Jan 16, 2020 | www.unz.com

What seems to have been a case of bad judgments and human error does, however, include some elements that have yet to be explained. The Iranian missile operator reportedly experienced considerable "jamming" and the planes transponder switched off and stopped transmitting several minutes before the missiles were launched . There were also problems with the communication network of the air defense command, which may have been related.

The electronic jamming coming from an unknown source meant that the air defense system was placed on manual operation, relying on human intervention to launch. The human role meant that an operator had to make a quick judgment in a pressure situation in which he had only moments to react. The shutdown of the transponder, which would have automatically signaled to the operator and Tor electronics that the plane was civilian, instead automatically indicated that it was hostile. The operator, having been particularly briefed on the possibility of incoming American cruise missiles, then fired.

The two missiles that brought the plane down came from a Russian-made system designated SA-15 by NATO and called Tor by the Russians. Its eight missiles are normally mounted on a tracked vehicle. The system includes both radar to detect and track targets as well as an independent launch system, which includes an Identification Friend or Foe (IFF) system functionality capable of reading call signs and transponder signals to prevent accidents. Given what happened on that morning in Tehran, it is plausible to assume that something or someone deliberately interfered with both the Iranian air defenses and with the transponder on the airplane, possibly as part of an attempt to create an aviation accident that would be attributed to the Iranian government.

The SA-15 Tor defense system used by Iran has one major vulnerability. It can be hacked or "spoofed," permitting an intruder to impersonate a legitimate user and take control. The United States Navy and Air Force reportedly have developed technologies "that can fool enemy radar systems with false and deceptively moving targets." Fooling the system also means fooling the operator. The Guardian has also reported independently how the United States military has long been developing systems that can from a distance alter the electronics and targeting of Iran's available missiles.

The same technology can, of course, be used to alter or even mask the transponder on a civilian airliner in such a fashion as to send false information about identity and location. The United States has the cyber and electronic warfare capability to both jam and alter signals relating to both airliner transponders and to the Iranian air defenses. Israel presumably has the same ability. Joe Quinn at Sott.net also notes an interested back story to those photos and video footage that have appeared in the New York Times and elsewhere showing the Iranian missile launch, the impact with the plane and the remains after the crash, to include the missile remains. They appeared on January 9 th , in an Instagram account called ' Rich Kids of Tehran '. Quinn asks how the Rich Kids happened to be in "a low-income housing estate on the city's outskirts [near the airport] at 6 a.m. on the morning of January 8 th with cameras pointed at the right part of the sky in time to capture a missile hitting a Ukrainian passenger plane ?"

Put together the Rich Kids and the possibility of electronic warfare and it all suggests a premeditated and carefully planned event of which the Soleimani assassination was only a part. There have been riots in Iran subsequent to the shooting down of the plane, blaming the government for its ineptitude. Some of the people in the street are clearly calling for the goal long sought by the United States and Israel, i.e. "regime change." If nothing else, Iran, which was widely seen as the victim in the killing of Soleimani, is being depicted in much of the international media as little more than another unprincipled actor with blood on its hands. There is much still to explain about the downing of Ukrainian International Airlines Flight 752.

Philip M. Giraldi, Ph.D., is Executive Director of the Council for the National Interest, a 501(c)3 tax deductible educational foundation (Federal ID Number #52-1739023) that seeks a more interests-based U.S. foreign policy in the Middle East.


AnonStarter , says: Show Comment January 15, 2020 at 10:45 pm GMT

Given this news, any impartial observer would at least entertain the possibility of its truth, particularly given the lengthy track record of the United States/Israel in perpetrating such crimes.

It's a good litmus test for determining where one's sentiment lies. Even "alternative media" aren't likely to touch this story.

Bravo to Mr. Giraldi and Mr. Unz.

Sean , says: Show Comment January 15, 2020 at 11:10 pm GMT
The Iranian Ambassador to Britain, Hamid Baeidinejad said in an interview on the UK Channel 4 news hours ago that although Iran had needed time to determine what had happened, it had now accepted responsibility, would pay compensation, and the people who fired on the jet will be put on trial.

If nothing else, Iran, which was widely seen as the victim in the killing of Soleimani, is being depicted in much of the international media as little more than another unprincipled actor with blood on its hands.

Both Trump and the Iranian regime have good domestic disquiet reason to rethink the confrontational policy each are pursuing. Iran and the US could get closer over this. I think the predictable unpredictability of assassination and catastrophic loss of life events makes false flagging them of dubious value.

Why did I rob banks? Because I enjoyed it. I loved it. I was more alive when I was inside a bank, robbing it, than at any other time in my life. I enjoyed everything about it so much that one or two weeks later I'd be out looking for the next job. But to me the money was the chips, that's all.

(Sutton W, Linn E: Where the Money Was: The Memoirs of a Bank Robber. Viking Press (1976), p. 160)

I suppose it is possible there are people who get addicted to false flagging others' deaths. If half of what is said in this site is true, Mossad really needs to set up a 12 step program.

onebornfree , says: Website Show Comment January 15, 2020 at 11:49 pm GMT
" .the big question which many people on social media are asking is: why was this "videographer" standing in a derelict industrial area outside Tehran at around six o'clock in the morning with a mobile phone camera training on a fixed angle to the darkened sky? The airliner is barely visible, yet the sky-watching person has the camera pointed and ready to film a most dramatic event, seconds before it happened. That strongly suggests, foreknowledge."

"Iran Jet Disaster Setup – Who Is the Mysterious Videographer?:"
https://ahtribune.com/world/north-africa-south-west-asia/iran/3809-jet-disaster-setup.html

And I would add: how do we know the video[s] are even genuine? [Answer: we don't, it is only an unproven assumption at this time].

Regards, onebornfree

anonymous [150] Disclaimer , says: Show Comment January 16, 2020 at 12:36 am GMT
Hmmm, cameras waiting beforehand, transponders not working. Sort of sounds like 9-11, doesn't it?
The Alarmist , says: Show Comment January 16, 2020 at 3:01 am GMT

The Iranian missile operator reportedly experienced considerable "jamming" and the planes transponder switched off and stopped transmitting several minutes before the missiles were launched.

I vaguely recall reports of transponder issues arising during the shootdown of MH-17.

anonymous [405] Disclaimer , says: Show Comment January 16, 2020 at 3:49 am GMT

Civilian passenger flights were still departing and arriving in Tehran, almost certainly an error in judgment on the part of the airport authorities. Inexplicably, civilian aircraft continued to take off and land even after Flight 752 was shot down.

The Iranian government is blameworthy for keeping planes in the air either because of diabolical reasons (delays a counter attack) or economic (nearly $1 billion a year in overflight fees).

However, the pilots of the airliners that took over during the morning between the first missile hitting Iraq and the downing of the Ukrainian airliner were dumb and irresponsible.

Anon [230] Disclaimer , says: Show Comment January 16, 2020 at 4:10 am GMT

The system includes both radar to detect and track targets as well as an independent launch system, which includes an Identification Friend or Foe (IFF) system functionality capable of reading call signs and transponder signals to prevent accidents.

Clearly you have no clue how an IFF operates and that no commercial airliner even has an IFF on board. Every commercial aircraft looks like the enemy to this SAM operator.

Also, you need to explain how spoofing a RADAR which creates a false track would cause the shoot down. The missile would simply target the false track instead of the real aircraft.

You also need to explain how an old SAM missile site can be hacked or spoofed to shoot down a civilian airliner. Especially this old one which has no Mode-S or ADS-B capability and only radio communication capability.

As Mark Twain said, it's better to keep your mouth shut and let people think you are an idiot rather than open it and remove all doubt.

Anon [200] Disclaimer , says: Show Comment January 16, 2020 at 5:20 am GMT
Even if this was a clear mistake on Iran's part, the US and Israel still have blood on their hands for the downing of this plane. The missiles were launched in response to a targeted killing of an Iranian general. If that didn't happen, these missiles never would've been launched.

Trump-Pence-Pompeo-Kushner-Netanyahu are ultimately responsible for these 176 lives lost. I suspect MBS is also part of the scheme. It was his fake peace offering that lured Soleimani to Iraq in the first place. I'm with Trudeau on this.

Onlooker , says: Show Comment January 16, 2020 at 5:22 am GMT
@Anon Before calling someone an idiot it is better to follow Mark Twain's advice yourself. A more careful reading reveals no claim that IFF was onstalled on the airliner. The commenter does speculate that possible spoofing involved a false attribution of a real airliner not the creation of a false airliner and radar track. Perhaps you are familiar with "old" electronic countermeasures and not with the "new", "top secret" and spiffy versions hinted at by the U.S. military?
AnonStarter , says: Show Comment January 16, 2020 at 6:30 am GMT
@Quartermaster /An Airliner can not legally launch with deadlined transponder, so the claim that it quit transmitting "several" minutes earlier would have placed it on the ground when it quit./

From the SoTT link :

As it climbed and reached 4,600ft above ground level, the plane's transponder suddenly stopped working at about 6.14am, 2 minutes or so after take off . [emphasis added]

The plane was already airborne when the transponder stopped working.

AnonStarter , says: Show Comment January 16, 2020 at 6:45 am GMT
@Onlooker Less than twenty replies into the thread and we've already got two individuals attempting to distort the facts. Here's the key link that readers should visit:

https://www.sott.net/article/427303-Was-Iranian-Missile-Operator-Tricked-Into-Shooting-Down-The-Ukrainian-Airlines-Plane-Over-Tehran

Compare the information there against what the detractors say here.

Daniel Rich , says: Show Comment January 16, 2020 at 7:16 am GMT
@Quartermaster

The airliner had not been in the air long at all when it was shot down. An Airliner can not legally launch with deadlined transponder, so the claim that it quit transmitting "several" minutes earlier would have placed it on the ground when it quit.

The flight departed Tehran Imam Khomeini International Airport at 02:42 UTC ( 06:12 local time ) and the last ADS-B signal was received by the Flightradar24 network at 02:44 UTC( 06:14 local time) . According to the report the aircraft climbed to 8000 feet and turned right back toward the airport and crashed at 02:48 UTC ( 06:18 local time ) -- four minutes after the last ADS-B signal was received by the Flightradar24 network. – Source Flight Radar 24

Mr. Giraldi's original claim:

The Iranian missile operator reportedly experienced considerable "jamming" and the planes transponder switched off and stopped transmitting several minutes before the missiles were launched. There were also problems with the communication network of the air defense command, which may have been related.

4 minutes after the transponders were switches off, the plane crashed .

Without [proper] access to the FDR and CVR, it's impossible to determine when the plane was hit and how long it took to crash, exactly.

The plane was only flying at 8,000 feet [its normal {flight} ceiling is 30,000 feet and above], so it's speed relatively low [cruise speed is between about 400 and 500 knots (460 – 575 mph / 740 – 930 kph), but the Ukrainian plane was still climbing] and the fall back to Earth relatively quick.

On the clip where the plane is on fire and finally crashes, the downward angle looked to be about 25 to 30 %, which is relatively steep. Time of downfall can be calculated when the relative data is available.

Therefore, Mr Giraldi's claim " several minutes before the missiles were launched " is technically correct , until proven wrong by data from the FDR and CVR,

utu , says: Show Comment January 16, 2020 at 7:31 am GMT
The Tor system is too primitive to be hacked. It is a stand alone, autonomous and mostly analog system. The radar signals it generates are shown on analog tube-screens.
Ghali , says: Show Comment January 16, 2020 at 8:07 am GMT
Interesting theory by P. Giraldi. However, I am very surprised that Israel/Mossad role in these acts of terrorism never mentioned. We know that Trump is a Zionist servant and acts on instructions from his jewish fananciers. We know, Trump is incapable of serious thinking.

Here is a good article with some interesting observations:
https://sputniknews.com/columnists/202001131078026961-iran-jet-disaster-setup/

GMC , says: Show Comment January 16, 2020 at 8:10 am GMT
The Iranians took the hit because their missiles took out the airliner. And then, they could stop the Western media crying for the next 6 mos. and this gave them time to bring in other neutral investigators to look at the evidence and come up with logical scenarios. There is a reason the black boxes weren't given to any one else to own – because they still remember the scam investigation of MH 17. I f lew planes for over 20 yrs – Every controlled/radared airport would ask me to turn on my transponder if it wasn't on – Everyone of them. This plane not only came from Ukraine but was an easy target for a hack from any of the big Intel countries. The BIG STORY here is that most every plane flying today – can have the same type consequences!!! because of the Western War Machine.
AZ , says: Show Comment January 16, 2020 at 10:08 am GMT
Ask the Israelis. They are experts in these operations. The blood of the innocent on their heads

R D Steele has some interesting thoughts as well:

https://phibetaiota.net/2020/01/robert-steele-world-war-iii-was-ukrainian-flight-ps752-a-western-false-flag-combining-remote-hijacking-and-transponder-disabling-to-trigger-two-tor-m1-missiles/

lavoisier , says: Website Show Comment January 16, 2020 at 12:01 pm GMT
@Anon

Trump-Pence-Pompeo-Kushner-Netanyahu are ultimately responsible for these 176 lives lost. I suspect MBS is also part of the scheme. It was his fake peace offering that lured Soleimani to Iraq in the first place. I'm with Trudeau on this.

Trudeau showed some real courage criticizing Trump and his terrible decisions.

More Western allies have to stand up to the Zionist stooge and call him out on his treachery and stupidity.

UncommonGround , says: Show Comment January 16, 2020 at 12:23 pm GMT
@bobhammer

The Democrats have gone too far.

I believe that P.G. has supported Trump until recently.

Besides, you could get some general information about such themes if you read articles like the following:

There's No Evidence Iran Is Responsible for the Deaths of Hundreds of Americans
by Stephen Zunes

https://progressive.org/dispatches/-no-evidence-iran-is-responsible-for-the-deaths-of-hundreds-of-americans-zunes-200107/

How the President Became a Drone Operator
by Allegra Harpootlian

https://www.counterpunch.org/2020/01/16/how-the-president-became-a-drone-operator/

lavoisier , says: Website Show Comment January 16, 2020 at 12:32 pm GMT
@bobhammer Stop drinking the Kool-Aid. Turn off Fox News now.

We are not always the good guys and we are up to our necks in deceit, plunder, and evil. Our actions have harmed millions of people around the world and it has to stop.

It is time for more self-reflection as individuals and as a nation; and it is long past time for us to be comfortable with lies.

Anonymous [401] Disclaimer , says: Show Comment January 16, 2020 at 2:22 pm GMT
@bobhammer The "uninterruptible" autopilot can be activated – either by pilots or by on-board sensors, or by radio or satellite link<= connected to controls at the remote end. Government agencies, quasi government agencies, military brats and probably the entire group of privately operated NGOs and private party mobsters (bankers, corporations and private military armies and privateers) at the remote end, can take over control of in-flight Aircraft, and fly it, land it, take it off, whatever, even if the pilot sitting in the cockpit objects. and does all he can to retrieve control from the remote operator.

Several comments report says interrupt able remote control, allows, persons on the ground, to take from the pilot in a flying airplane, control of the airplane the pilot is suppose to be flying, in situations for example when terrorist are in the cockpit. I have not read the manufacture's literature nor do I have personal knowledge abut the equipment list of any of these aircraft, the list suggest they are all aircraft, not only equipped with the UAP but that they were all aircraft made by the same manufacturer. I am merely repeating what was on stated as fact on a website I visited.

Many are looking for proof that remotely equipped uninterruptible autopilots are being used as Remote Control weaponized drones . Imagine an pilot, located on the ground in London or somewhere parks his /her remote ground to air control vehicle and takes over flight control including turns on/off the transponder [<=which tells everyone where the plane is during its flight] on a plane that is flying, landing or taking off from say the Tehran airport in Iran?

My personal experience is that it generally takes less than 2 minutes after a transponder is turned off during a planes flight, before fighter jets arrive to escort the transponder disabled plane; so the whole system that protects civilian aircraft, and allows the military to know the aircraft is civilian, is dependent on the Transponder, installed in the airplane, to continuously squawk during flight, its exact position so that everyone can identify the flight, and track the aircraft during its flight. Every land based control tower, ATC control system center and military installation depends on that airborne squawking transponder to track the en-route progress of commercial and private aircraft flights from take off to landing.

Another comment made on that list referred to above claimed Uninterruptible Auto Pilot [UAP] equipped aircraft have been involved in unexplained flight accident/disappearance events (I have no personal knowledge about the equipment in these aircraft, I just repeated here what someone else said elsewhere, please verify these claims yourself or provide verification ) .

(4 @911) <=UAP allows pilot-less flights, no pilot need board the plane for its flight.
(PS752) (transponder turned off, destroyed by confused ground defense crews)
MH370 (vanished into thin air)
MH17 (had its flight path altered.)
Eyes focus on Uninterruptible Auto Pilot (UAP) .. to explain recent Tehran 160 person disaster?

This is really something to think about? Always the question has been how did four military officers from Iran, trained a few weeks in Florida to fly jets, manage to get through four differently located pilot screening TSA gates to fly the aircraft and passenger into the 9/11 events. Conspiracy theories suggest since no pilot is needed, there were no pilots for TSA to screening. Remote control on the ground flew the aircraft to their destinations.

Trinity , says: Show Comment January 16, 2020 at 2:51 pm GMT
"By way of deception thou shalt do war."

Just about says it all doesn't it? What kind of people are we dealing with here? Of course only the morons out there are still being fooled by these kind of false flags. Even in the year 2020 these same morons still believe ZOG's 9-11 fairy tale and label any other theory as a "conspiracy." Speaking of conspiracies the biggest idiots out there, even bigger than the ones who believe ZOG's narrative or those type who believe the total wacktard stuff put out by ZIO controlled disinfo puppets like Alex Jones.

Ukrainian commercial airline? What other nation besides Iran does ZOG have it in for? Is it Russia?

War by deception? HARDLY to anyone with two brain cells left. These fools have been caught before, they aren't that clever. What they are is protected by a syndicate of bought and paid for politicians. They were caught attacking the USS Liberty, they were caught bombing American and British installations in Egypt, the Rosenbergs and Pollard were nailed, but of course despite all of this, America and her leaders continued the value Israel as a friend and an ally. With a friend like Israel, who needs enemies. Then of course we have the story of our 5 little dancing Israelis apprehended in NYC after being observed dancing and celebrating the WTC towers collapsing. So you mean a group of Israelis from Israel, nation that is ALLEGEDLY "friends" with America and America think it is hilarious and worth celebrating when America is attacked and thousands are burned alive or jump to their death from hundreds of feet above the street?? Of course "our" media quickly exonerated the celebrating Israelis and buried that story faster than your average house cat buries his own turds.

ZOG really thinks the average American has the IQ of a monkey. Even after the WMD caca they still think you people will believe anything they tell you to believe. The sad part is they are right about that with the majority of the population.

[Jan 15, 2020] Democracy in action: voters choice in 2016 was limited to the choice between brain cancer and leprosy

Jan 08, 2020 | www.moonofalabama.org

Trailer Trash , Jan 8 2020 16:32 utc | 105

Trump is such a douchebag. He claims there were no lives lost due to their "early warning system" -- no mention that the "early warning system" was a phone call!

Now he's once again justifying assassination, etc.

pretzelattack , Jan 8 2020 16:39 utc | 110

there was no "better choice" between trump and clinton. i still think clinton represented a greater danger than trump of getting into a war with russia, but they are both warmongers first class. for our next election, we may have a choice between ebola and flesh eating bacteria, or brain cancer and leprosy. if the game is rigged there's no winning it playing by the game's "rules".

[Jan 14, 2020] Trump's Killing of Soleimani New "Worst Mistake in US History" by Kevin Barrett

Jan 14, 2020 | www.unz.com

Kevin Barrett January 12, 2020 2,000 Words 135 Comments Reply Email This Page to Someone
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Donald Trump occasionally utters unspeakable truths. In March 2018 he called Bush Jr.'s decision to invade Iraq "the worst single mistake in US history." Earlier, Trump had said that Bush should have been impeached for launching that disastrous war.

Yet on January 2 2020 Trump made a much bigger mistake: He launched all-out war with Iran -- a war that will be joined by millions of anti-US non-Iranians, including Iraqis -- by murdering Gen. Qassem Soleimani, the legendary hero who defeated ISIS, alongside the popular Iraqi commander Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis. Gen. Soleimani was by far the most popular figure in Iran, where he polled over 80% popularity, and throughout much of the Middle East. He was also adored by millions even outside that region, non-Muslims as well as Muslims. Many Christians throughout the world loved Gen. Soleimani, whose campaign against ISIS saved the lives of thousands of their co-religionists. Even Sunni Muslims (the people, not the billionaire playboy sheikhs) generally loved and admired the Shia Muslim Gen. Soleimani, a saintly warrior-monk who was uncommonly spiritual, morally impeccable, and the most accomplished military genius of this young century.

The strategic stupidity of Trump's order to murder Soleimani cannot be exaggerated. This shocking, dastardly murder, committed while Soleimani was on an American-encouraged peace mission, has unleashed a "Pearl Harbor effect" that will galvanize not just the nation of Iran, but other forces in the region and around the world. Just as the shock effect of Pearl Harbor helped the American war party overcome domestic political divisions and unite the nation in its resolve for vengeance, so has the Soleimani murder galvanized regional groups, led by Islamic Iran and Iraq, in their dedication to obliterate every last trace of any US-Israeli presence in the region, no matter how long it takes, by any means necessary.

Most Americans still don't understand the towering stature of Soleimani. Perhaps some comparisons will be helpful.

To understand the effect on Iran and the region, imagine that Stalin had succeeded in murdering George Patton, Dwight Eisenhower, and Douglas MacArthur, all on the same day, in 1946. These US generals, like Soleimani, were very popular, in part because they had just won a huge war against an enemy viewed as an embodiment of pure evil. How would Americans have reacted to such a crime? They would have united to destroy Stalin and the Soviet Union, no matter how long it took, no matter what sacrifices were necessary. That is how hundreds of millions of people will react to the martyrdom of Gen. Soleimani.

But even that comparison does not do justice to the situation. Patton, Eisenhower, and MacArthur were secular figures in an increasingly secular culture. Had Stalin murdered them, their deaths would not have risen to the level of religious martyrdom. Americans' motivation to avenge their deaths would not have been as deep and long-lasting, nor as charged with the avid desire to sacrifice everything in pursuit of the goal, in comparison with the millions of future avengers of the death of Gen. Soleimani.

https://www.youtube.com/embed/4nKSlbFCJwo?feature=oembed

The tragedy, from the US point of view, is that this didn't need to happen. Iran, a medium-sized player in a tough neighborhood, is a natural ally of the United States. As Zbigniew Brzezinski wrote in The Grand Chessboard , "Iran provides stabilizing support for the new political diversity of Central Asia. Its independence acts as a barrier to any long-term Russian threat to American interests in the Persian Gulf region." (p. 47) Obama, guided by Brzezinski and his acolytes, set the US on a sensible path toward cordial relations with Iran -- only to see his foreign policy triumph sabotaged by the pro-Zionist Deep State and finally shredded by Netanyahu's puppets Trump and Pompeo. Iran, dominated by principled anti-Zionists, is a thorn in the side of Israel, so the unstable Iranophobe Trump was inserted into the presidency to undo Obama's handiwork and reassert total Israeli control over US policy -- the same total control initially cemented by the 9/11 false flag.

If the murder of Soleimani bears comparison to Pearl Harbor, it also echoes the October 1914 killing of Archduke Ferdinand in Sarajevo, the first domino in a series that ended in a world war. The dominos are lined up the same way today, though it may take longer for all of them to fall. Due to the enormity of its psychological effect, the Soleimani assassination irreversibly sets the US at permanent war with Iran and the rest of the Axis of Resistance. That war can end in only two ways: The destruction of Islamic Iran, or the complete elimination of the US military presence in the region. The first alternative is unacceptable not only to Iran, its regional friends, and the conscience of the world, but also to Russia and China, who would be next in line for destruction if Iran is annihilated. The second alternative is probably unacceptable to the permanent National Security State that governs the US no matter who is in office, and to Israel and its global network (and its agents in the "US" National Security State). So the irresistible force will soon be meeting the immovable object. It is difficult to see how this could possibly end well.

Ironically, given Trump's well-justified scorn for Bush's invasion of Iraq, the first front of the world war unleashed by Soleimani's killing will be in that long-suffering nation, whose government has just ordered US troops to depart posthaste. If Trump wants to keep US forces in Iraq he is going to have to re-invade that nation, attack and destroy its government and military, fight a long-term counterinsurgency (this time against the vast majority of the population) and take far more casualties than Bush Jr. did.

Trump's decision to martyr the great Iranian general and the celebrated Iraqi commander was perfectly timed to unite Iraq against the American occupation. Prior to the murder, Iraq was in the midst of color-revolution chaos, as demonstrators protested against not just the US and Israel, the real culprits in the destruction of their country, but also Iran, Iraqi politicians, and other targets. Those demonstrations, and the murders that marred them, were orchestrated by Gladio style covert US forces. As Iraqi Prime Minster Abdul Mahdi explained :

" I visited China and signed an important agreement with them to undertake the construction instead (of an American company). Upon my return, Trump called me to ask me to reject this agreement. When I refused, he threatened to unleash huge demonstrations against me that would end my premiership.

"Huge demonstrations against me duly materialized and Trump called again to threaten that if I did not comply with his demands, then he would have Marine snipers on tall buildings target protesters and security personnel alike in order to pressure me. I refused again and handed in my resignation. To this day the Americans insist on us rescinding our deal with the Chinese.

"After this, when our Minister of Defense publicly stated that a third party was targeting both protestors and security personnel alike (just as Trump had threatened, he would do), I received a new call from Trump threatening to kill both me and the Minister of Defense if we kept on talking about this 'third party'.

"I was supposed to meet him [Soleimani] later in the morning when he was killed. He came to deliver a message from Iran in response to the message we had delivered to the Iranians from the Saudis (as part of a peace initiative)."

So Trump lured Soleimani to Tehran with a peace initiative, then ambushed him. That's why Soleimani was traveling openly on a commercial flight to Baghdad International Airport. He thought he was under US protection.

Abdul Mahdi's explanation rings true. It reflects the views of most Iraqis, who will be galvanized by Trump's atrocious actions to resume their insurgency against US occupation.

As Iraqis continue to attack the hated US presence in their country, Trump will undoubtedly blame Iran, whatever its actual role. So this time the Iranians will have no motivation to avoid helping the Iraqi liberation struggle -- they would be blamed even if they didn't. Though Soleimani was a relatively America-friendly stabilizing force after the US invasions of Iraq and Afghanistan -- the claim that he was behind IEDs that killed US troops is a ridiculous lie -- in the wake of his death Iran will respond positively to Iraqi requests for help in its national liberation struggle against the hated US occupier.

A rekindled anti-US insurgency in Iraq, and various forms of ambiguous/deniable retaliation for the murder of Gen. Soleimani throughout the region and the world, will force Trump up the escalation ladder. Iran, and the larger eject-the-US-from-the-Mideast project, will not back down, though they may occasionally stage tactical retreats for appearance's sake. The only way Trump could "win" would be by completely destroying Iran. Even if Russia and China allowed that, an unlikely prospect, Trump or any US president who "won" that kind of war would be remembered as the worst war criminal in world history, and the US would lose all its soft power and with it its empire.

Russia now faces the same kind of decision it had to make when the Zionist-dominated US tried to destroy Syria: stand by and let Tehran be annihilated, with Moscow next in line; or use its considerable military power to save its ally. Putin will have no choice but to support Iran, just as he supported Syria. China, too, will need to ensure that the USA loses its Zionist-driven war on Iran. Otherwise Beijing would risk facing the same fate as Tehran.

Even if the only help it gets from Russia and China is covert, Iran is in a strong position to wage asymmetric war against the US presence in the Middle East. Almost two decades ago, the $250 million war game Millennium Challenge 2002 blew up in the neocons' faces, as Lt. Gen. Paul Van Riper commanded Iranian forces against the US and steered them to victory. Though some technological developments since then may favor the US, as Dr. Alan Sabrosky recently pointed out on my radio show , others favor Iran, which now has missiles of sufficient quality and quantity to rain down hell on US bases, annihilate much of if not all of Israel, and send every US ship anywhere near the Persian Gulf to the bottom of the ocean. (Anti-ship missiles have far outstripped naval defenses, and Iran has concealed immense reserves of them deep in the Zagros Mountains overlooking the Persian Gulf.)

So Trump or whoever follows him will eventually face a choice: Accept defeat and withdraw all American bases and forces in the region; or continue up an escalation ladder that inexorably leads to World War III. The higher up the ladder he goes, the harder it will be to jump off.

The apocalyptic scenario may not be accidental. Mike Pompeo, who is widely believed to have duped Trump into ordering the killing of Gen. Soleimani, may have done so not only on behalf of the extremist Netanyahu faction in Israel, but also in service to an apocalyptic Christian Zionist program that yearns for planetary nuclear destruction . Pompeo is ardently awaiting "the rapture," the culmination of Christian Zionist history, when a global nuclear war begins at Megiddo Hill in Occupied Palestine and consumes the planet, sending everyone to hell except the Christian Zionists themselves, who are "beamed up" Star Trek fashion by none other than Jesus himself.

Whether it goes down in radioactive flames or in a kinder and gentler way, the US empire, as unstable as its leaders, is nearing the final stages of collapse. "Very stable genius" Trump and Armageddonite Pompeo may have hastened the inevitable when they ordered the fateful killing of Gen. Soleimani.

[Jan 14, 2020] Craig Murray

Jan 14, 2020 | www.unz.com

January 4, 2020 2,300 Words 73 Comments Reply Email This Page to Someone
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In one of the series of blatant lies the USA has told to justify the assassination of Soleimani, Mike Pompeo said that Soleimani was killed because he was planning "Imminent attacks" on US citizens. It is a careful choice of word. Pompeo is specifically referring to the Bethlehem Doctrine of Pre-Emptive Self Defence .

Developed by Daniel Bethlehem when Legal Adviser to first Netanyahu's government and then Blair's, the Bethlehem Doctrine is that states have a right of "pre-emptive self-defence" against "imminent" attack. That is something most people, and most international law experts and judges, would accept. Including me.

What very few people, and almost no international lawyers, accept is the key to the Bethlehem Doctrine – that here "Imminent" – the word used so carefully by Pompeo – does not need to have its normal meanings of either "soon" or "about to happen". An attack may be deemed "imminent", according to the Bethlehem Doctrine, even if you know no details of it or when it might occur. So you may be assassinated by a drone or bomb strike – and the doctrine was specifically developed to justify such strikes – because of "intelligence" you are engaged in a plot, when that intelligence neither says what the plot is nor when it might occur. Or even more tenuous, because there is intelligence you have engaged in a plot before, so it is reasonable to kill you in case you do so again.

I am not inventing the Bethlehem Doctrine. It has been the formal legal justification for drone strikes and targeted assassinations by the Israeli, US and UK governments for a decade. Here it is in academic paper form, published by Bethlehem after he left government service (the form in which it is adopted by the US, UK and Israeli Governments is classified information ).

So when Pompeo says attacks by Soleimani were "imminent" he is not using the word in the normal sense in the English language. It is no use asking him what, where or when these "imminent" attacks were planned to be. He is referencing the Bethlehem Doctrine under which you can kill people on the basis of a feeling that they may have been about to do something.

The idea that killing an individual who you have received information is going to attack you, but you do not know when, where or how, can be justified as self-defence, has not gained widespread acceptance – or indeed virtually any acceptance – in legal circles outside the ranks of the most extreme devoted neo-conservatives and zionists. Daniel Bethlehem became the FCO's Chief Legal Adviser, brought in by Jack Straw, precisely because every single one of the FCO's existing Legal Advisers believed the Iraq War to be illegal. In 2004, when the House of Commons was considering the legality of the war on Iraq, Bethlehem produced a remarkable paper for consideration which said that it was legal because the courts and existing law were wrong , a defence which has seldom succeeded in court.

(b) following this line, I am also of the view that the wider principles of the law on self-defence also require closer scrutiny. I am not persuaded that the approach of doctrinal purity reflected in the Judgments of the International Court of Justice in this area provide a helpful edifice on which a coherent legal regime, able to address the exigencies of contemporary international life and discourage resort to unilateral action, is easily crafted;

The key was that the concept of "imminent" was to change:

The concept of what constitutes an "imminent" armed attack will develop to meet new circumstances and new threats

In the absence of a respectable international lawyer willing to argue this kind of tosh, Blair brought in Bethlehem as Chief Legal Adviser, the man who advised Netanyahu on Israel's security wall and who was willing to say that attacking Iraq was legal on the basis of Saddam's "imminent threat" to the UK, which proved to be non-existent. It says everything about Bethlehem's eagerness for killing that the formulation of the Bethlehem Doctrine on extrajudicial execution by drone came after the Iraq War, and he still gave not one second's thought to the fact that the intelligence on the "imminent threat" can be wrong. Assassinating people on the basis of faulty intelligence is not addressed by Bethlehem in setting out his doctrine. The bloodlust is strong in this one.

There are literally scores of academic articles, in every respected journal of international law, taking down the Bethlehem Doctrine for its obvious absurdities and revolting special pleading. My favourite is this one by Bethlehem's predecessor as the FCO Chief Legal Adviser, Sir Michael Wood and his ex-Deputy Elizabeth Wilmshurst.

I addressed the Bethlehem Doctrine as part of my contribution to a book reflecting on Chomsky 's essay "On the Responsibility of Intellectuals"

In the UK recently, the Attorney General gave a speech in defence of the UK's drone policy, the assassination of people – including British nationals – abroad. This execution without a hearing is based on several criteria, he reassured us. His speech was repeated slavishly in the British media. In fact, the Guardian newspaper simply republished the government press release absolutely verbatim, and stuck a reporter's byline at the top.

The media have no interest in a critical appraisal of the process by which the British government regularly executes without trial. Yet in fact it is extremely interesting. The genesis of the policy lay in the appointment of Daniel Bethlehem as the Foreign and Commonwealth Office's Chief Legal Adviser. Jack Straw made the appointment, and for the first time ever it was external, and not from the Foreign Office's own large team of world-renowned international lawyers. The reason for that is not in dispute. Every single one of the FCO's legal advisers had advised that the invasion of Iraq was illegal, and Straw wished to find a new head of the department more in tune with the neo-conservative world view. Straw went to extremes. He appointed Daniel Bethlehem, the legal 'expert' who provided the legal advice to Benjamin Netanyahu on the 'legality' of building the great wall hemming in the Palestinians away from their land and water resources. Bethlehem was an enthusiastic proponent of the invasion of Iraq. He was also the most enthusiastic proponent in the world of drone strikes.

Bethlehem provided an opinion on the legality of drone strikes which is, to say the least, controversial. To give one example, Bethlehem accepts that established principles of international law dictate that lethal force may be used only to prevent an attack which is 'imminent'. Bethlehem argues that for an attack to be 'imminent' does not require it to be 'soon'. Indeed you can kill to avert an 'imminent attack' even if you have no information on when and where it will be. You can instead rely on your target's 'pattern of behaviour'; that is, if he has attacked before, it is reasonable to assume he will attack again and that such an attack is 'imminent'.

There is a much deeper problem: that the evidence against the target is often extremely dubious. Yet even allowing the evidence to be perfect, it is beyond me that the state can kill in such circumstances without it being considered a death penalty imposed without trial for past crimes, rather than to frustrate another 'imminent' one. You would think that background would make an interesting story. Yet the entire 'serious' British media published the government line, without a single journalist, not one, writing about the fact that Bethlehem's proposed definition of 'imminent' has been widely rejected by the international law community. The public knows none of this. They just 'know' that drone strikes are keeping us safe from deadly attack by terrorists, because the government says so, and nobody has attempted to give them other information

Remember, this is not just academic argument, the Bethlehem Doctrine is the formal policy position on assassination of Israel, the US and UK governments. So that is lie one. When Pompeo says Soleimani was planning "imminent" attacks, he is using the Bethlehem definition under which "imminent" is a "concept" which means neither "soon" nor "definitely going to happen". To twist a word that far from its normal English usage is to lie. To do so to justify killing people is obscene. That is why, if I finish up in the bottom-most pit of hell, the worst thing about the experience will be the company of Daniel Bethlehem.

Let us now move on to the next lie, which is being widely repeated, this time originated by Donald Trump, that Soleimani was responsible for the "deaths of hundreds, if not thousands, of Americans". This lie has been parroted by everybody, Republicans and Democrats alike.

Really? Who were they? When and where? While the Bethlehem Doctrine allows you to kill somebody because they might be going to attack someone, sometime, but you don't know who or when, there is a reasonable expectation that if you are claiming people have already been killed you should be able to say who and when.

The truth of the matter is that if you take every American killed including and since 9/11, in the resultant Middle East related wars, conflicts and terrorist acts, well over 90% of them have been killed by Sunni Muslims financed and supported out of Saudi Arabia and its gulf satellites, and less than 10% of those Americans have been killed by Shia Muslims tied to Iran.

This is a horribly inconvenient fact for US administrations which, regardless of party, are beholden to Saudi Arabia and its money. It is, the USA affirms, the Sunnis who are the allies and the Shias who are the enemy. Yet every journalist or aid worker hostage who has been horribly beheaded or otherwise executed has been murdered by a Sunni, every jihadist terrorist attack in the USA itself, including 9/11, has been exclusively Sunni, the Benghazi attack was by Sunnis, Isil are Sunni, Al Nusra are Sunni, the Taliban are Sunni and the vast majority of US troops killed in the region are killed by Sunnis.

Precisely which are these hundreds of deaths for which the Shia forces of Soleimani were responsible? Is there a list? It is of course a simple lie. Its tenuous connection with truth relates to the Pentagon's estimate – suspiciously upped repeatedly since Iran became the designated enemy – that back during the invasion of Iraq itself , 83% of US troop deaths were at the hands of Sunni resistance and 17% of of US troop deaths were at the hands of Shia resistance, that is 603 troops. All the latter are now lain at the door of Soleimani, remarkably.

Those were US troops killed in combat during an invasion. The Iraqi Shia militias – whether Iran backed or not – had every legal right to fight the US invasion. The idea that the killing of invading American troops was somehow illegal or illegitimate is risible. Plainly the US propaganda that Soleimani was "responsible for hundreds of American deaths" is intended, as part of the justification for his murder, to give the impression he was involved in terrorism, not legitimate combat against invading forces. The idea that the US has the right to execute those who fight it when it invades is an absolutely stinking abnegation of the laws of war.

As I understand it, there is very little evidence that Soleimani had active operational command of Shia militias during the invasion, and in any case to credit him personally with every American soldier killed is plainly a nonsense. But even if Soleimani had personally supervised every combat success, these were legitimate acts of war. You cannot simply assassinate opposing generals who fought you, years after you invade.

The final, and perhaps silliest lie, is Vice President Mike Pence's attempt to link Soleimani to 9/11. There is absolutely no link between Soleimani and 9/11, and the most strenuous efforts by the Bush regime to find evidence that would link either Iran or Iraq to 9/11 (and thus take the heat off their pals the al-Saud who were actually responsible) failed. Yes, it is true that some of the hijackers at one point transited Iran to Afghanistan. But there is zero evidence, as the 9/11 report specifically stated, that the Iranians knew what they were planning, or that Soleimani personally was involved. This is total bullshit. 9/11 was Sunni and Saudi led, nothing to do with Iran.

Soleimani actually was involved in intelligence and logistical cooperation with the United States in Afghanistan post 9/11 (the Taliban were his enemies too, the shia Tajiks being a key part of the US aligned Northern Alliance). He was in Iraq to fight ISIL.

The final aggravating factor in the Soleimani murder is that he was an accredited combatant general of a foreign state which the world – including the USA – recognises. The Bethlehem Doctrine specifically applies to "non-state actors". Unlike all of the foregoing, this next is speculation, but I suspect that the legal argument in the Pentagon ran that Soleimani is a non-state actor when in Iraq, where the Shia militias have a semi-official status.

But that does not wash. Soleimani is a high official in Iran who was present in Iraq as a guest of the Iraqi government, to which the US government is allied. This greatly exacerbates the illegality of his assassination still further.

Craig Murray is an author, broadcaster and human rights activist. He was British Ambassador to Uzbekistan from August 2002 to October 2004 and Rector of the University of Dundee from 2007 to 2010. (Republished from CraigMurray.org by permission of author or representative)


utu , says: Show Comment January 13, 2020 at 6:16 am GMT

Rise and Kill First: The Secret History of Israel's Targeted Assassinations by Ronen Bergman

The book's title is inspired by a statement in the Talmud: "If someone comes to kill you, rise up and kill him first".

And there is another dictum in Talmud: Tob Shebbe Goyim Harog ("Kill the Best Gentiles").

Igor Bundy , says: Show Comment January 13, 2020 at 7:16 am GMT
We know Israel does this all the time but to non state actors. I dont think in recent history anyone has openly target a state actor in such a criminal fashion because it is an act of war and not only that but considered barbaric. To ask for mediation and then to assassinate the messengers is an act that not even the mongols took part in and they considered it enough to wipe out any such parties..
Parfois1 , says: Show Comment January 13, 2020 at 7:25 am GMT
Good expose about the creative criminal minds twisting language and decency to justify murder and war crimes...

A new legal doctrine to justify crimes in an industrial scale for the good of UK-USrael.

However they might be right in claiming that Gen. Soleimani had killed or was about to kill many "Americans" – not strictly US citizens – but the honorary American terrorist foot soldiers fighting American wars in the Middle East.

Ghali , says: Show Comment January 13, 2020 at 7:56 am GMT
Do terrorists act legally? The U.S. is a terrorist organisation. It is misleading to call the US a nation or a country. Soleimani is widely-acknowledged as the architect of the successful campaign to defeat the U.S.-Israel sponsored terrorists (ISIS and al-Qaeda) in Syria and Iraq. The sad irony is that Iran was a major U.S. "ally" during the U.S. aggression against Afghanistan and more importantly against Iraq. Without Iran (the Eastern front) the U.S. would not have invaded Iraq. Iran played a major military role helping the U.S. against the Iraqi Resistance.
Priss Factor , says: Website Show Comment January 13, 2020 at 8:18 am GMT
Hollywood creatures are the vilest scum.

Hollywood's fake history vs. actual history on Israel's role in the Iraq war.

Hollywood's fake history vs. actual history on Israel's role in the Iraq war. for more https://t.co/lTonBw8VGF pic.twitter.com/1pxVcmIqhq

-- Adam Green (@Know_More_News) January 12, 2020

Dube , says: Show Comment January 13, 2020 at 9:12 am GMT
While Ahmadinejad never actually said that Israel would be driven into the sea, that statement was imminent, therefore it was legitimate to quote it.
Zumbuddi , says: Show Comment January 13, 2020 at 9:41 am GMT
How hideous that this is named Bethlehem, "The place of healing; place of birth of the Prince of Peace.'

More appropriate to call it the ESTHER doctrine, or PURIM doctrine.

The Hebrew text provides no solid evidence that Haman sought to kill Jews: the notion is based on Mordecha the Spy and self-serving Snitch.

Netanyahu has made public statements linking today's Iran to the Purim doctrine that Jews celebrate to this day.

In other words, Jews demonstrate a clear patter of "imminent threat" to kill those who resist Zionist – Anglo dominence.

Under this Purim (Bethlehem) doctrine, therefore, it is not only legitimate, it is necessary -- a Constitutional obligation -- that the American government Kill Jews who pose an Imminent Threat to the American -- and Iranian -- people.

tim hardacre , says: Show Comment January 13, 2020 at 9:47 am GMT
As a retired international lawyer I am of the opinion Mr. Murray sets out fact and law impressively . He says everything that is needed to be said

Good for the FCO legal team in resisting the invasion of Iraq. I do know at least one British regiment sought independent legal advice before accepting orders.

Just passing through , says: Show Comment January 13, 2020 at 9:50 am GMT
Great article Mr. Murray, very needed in these times of almost universal deceit.

Mr. Bethlehem displays the famous Jewish quality of chutzpah – the quality of a bit who has killed his parents in cold blood but begs the judge for mercy because he is an orphan – when he decided to simply change the law.

I wish I had some of that Jewish privilege, that way I too could go around robbing and killing and then simply change the law to get away Scot free.

Gallum , says: Show Comment January 13, 2020 at 9:52 am GMT
Iran's President Hassan Rouhani attended Glasgow Caledonian University in Scotland, graduating in 1995 with an M.Phil. degree in Law. Rouhani is close to Jack Straw and Straw is very close to Lord Levy. And Lord Levy is very close to Lord Rothschild. Jack Straw says "in Hassan Rouhani's Iran, you can feel the winds change." "Winds changing" is an understatement. They are gust winds blowing at high velocity directly from the City of London and from Israel's direction. All very high level British intrigue going on here in Iran. It was Jack Straw who appointed Daniel Bethlehem who developed the "Bethlehem Doctrine" used in justifying the assassination of General Soleinami under false pretenses Pompeo probably knew about when he informed President Trump. From 1979 to 2013, Rouhani held a number of important positions in the Velayat-e Faqih's key institutions, as "the man in power but in the shadows." Hassan Rouhani's job it appears considering his education and position is through Shia law is to continue to perpetuate the spread of the "revolution." The "revolution" is designed to keep confrontation in place. Why not gradually move from "revolutionary Shia" to a more conciliatory peaceful religious position? Iran's Mohammad Javad Zarif who is now an Iranian career diplomat, spent 20 years from the age of 17 studying in the United States. Kind of makes us look harder at John Kerry and whether or not his connections to Mohammad Javad Zarif have anything to do with all that is unfolding here?
Nonny Mouse , says: Show Comment January 13, 2020 at 10:41 am GMT
They all have fake names. Netanyahu is really Mileikowski. Ben Gurion was really Gruen. But for a British Jew to grab the name Bethlehem is a real attack on Christianity.
Parfois1 , says: Show Comment January 13, 2020 at 10:43 am GMT
@Ghali

The sad irony is that Iran was a major U.S. "ally" during the U.S. aggression against Afghanistan and more importantly against Iraq. Without Iran (the Eastern front) the U.S. would not have invaded Iraq. Iran played a major military role helping the U.S. against the Iraqi Resistance.

Well, what can one say? First, there is the official narrative; then there are the alternative narratives in their many fashions and narrations; and then there is the oddball narrative that defies logic and reason. Iran allied with Usrael?

It may look (and is) an exorbitant stretch of imagination to come to such a view. But it is not unique; it is not much different from the often-heard impossible claim here at UR that Nazi Germany was allied with the Soviet Union in 1939!

anonymous [382] Disclaimer , says: Show Comment January 13, 2020 at 10:51 am GMT
@RouterAl

Can I be the only person to think that from the moment Hitler transported his first shipment of Haavara Agreement Jews to Palestine there has not been a moments piece in that corner of the globe.

Can you be the only person . . .?

Possibly.

"There has not been a moment's piece [sic] in that corner of the globe" since Herzl began attempting to co-opt the Ottoman Empire in ~1895.

Balfour ramped it up a notch in 1917; at the urging of Louis Brandeis, Woodrow Wilson endorsed Balfour's plan.

NoseytheDuke , says: Show Comment January 13, 2020 at 11:01 am GMT
@Wally Note here that Wally fails to condemn Trump's illegal act of war on a national of a nation which Congress has not declared war upon.

Yes Wally, Obama was a war criminal who deserves to hang for his crimes, but if you are to retain any credibility with which to continue your mission to expose the Holohoax, you should also acknowledge that Trump is a war criminal too who, based on precedent, also deserves to hang. Your loyalty is clearly misplaced.

NoseytheDuke , says: Show Comment January 13, 2020 at 11:09 am GMT
@Dube I believe that what he actually said was that, "Israel would disappear from the pages of history". The usual liars reported this as "Iran would wipe Israel off the map".

If the West is to fight back and survive then the first battle should surely be against the lying media organs that bear so much responsibility for the shit-storm that is on the way.

SolontoCroesus , says: Show Comment January 13, 2020 at 11:29 am GMT
@Parfois1 Hillary Mann Leverett negotiated with Iranian counterparts at United Nations and gained Iranian assistance in finding partners to defeat Taliban
March 31, 2015

~15 min:

https://www.c-span.org/video/?325094-3/washington-journal-hillary-mann-leverett-mark-dubowitz-iran-nuclear-negotiations

Leverett:

"Unlike Mr. Dubowitz and many in Washington, I have actually negotiated with current Iranian officials, and it was an effective negotiation. [it resulted] in a state enormously not only overthrow the Taliban, but set up a proper government in Afghanistan. There is just no evidence whatsoever that continuing to bludgeon them and pressure them is going to do anything to give us concessions."

Leverett participated in a 'round-table discussion' with Mark Dubowitz of Foundation for Defense of Democracy (FDD).

Dubowitz's spiel was boilerplate: "Saddam killed 200,000 of his own people, he is pursuing nuclear weapons," blah blah blah.

On Jan 12 2020 on C Span, https://www.c-span.org/event/?467915/washington-journal-01122020 first Ilan Goldenberg of Center for New American Security (George Soros, major funder), then Michael Rubin of American Enterprise Institute * recited the same talking points: only the names were changed, a tacit acknowledgement that the original, Iraqi-based set of names were dead.

*AEI Board of Trustees:
AEI is governed by a Board of Trustees, composed of leading business and financial executives.
Daniel A. D'Aniello, Chairman
Cofounder and Chairman
The Carlyle Group

Clifford S. Asness
Managing and Founding Principal
AQR Capital Management, LLC

The Honorable Richard B. Cheney

Peter H. Coors
Vice Chairman of the Board
Molson Coors Brewing Company

Harlan Crow
Chairman
Crow Holdings

Ravenel B. Curry III
Chief Investment Officer
Eagle Capital Management, LLC

-- also interesting comments from the audience @ 11 min

Leverett has also repeated, on numerous occasions, that sanctions –" a weapon of war" -- are counterproductive and, in the case of Iraq, "killed a million Iraqis, half of them children."

Biff , says: Show Comment January 13, 2020 at 11:31 am GMT
@NoseytheDuke

I believe that what he actually said was that, "Israel would disappear from the pages of history".

More precisely the quote says "The Israel regime would disappear .." meaning the Israel government – not the country and its' people.

dimples , says: Show Comment January 13, 2020 at 11:34 am GMT
@Dube Indeed, the Jews cunningly arranged for the Arab states to look like they might attack them in 1967. Then they swooped like a prescient eagle and blew up all the Egyptian planes on the ground before this attack, which might not have happened otherwise, actually happened. Its definitely a winning philosophy, but only if you are sure you are going to win in the first place.
Art , says: Show Comment January 13, 2020 at 11:45 am GMT
Leave it to a Jew and his Bethlehem Doctrine, to crush the four centuries old Treaty of Westphalia where the principle of national sovereignty was instituted. Killing the leaders of a sovereign nation breaks the treaty.

Assassination is a Jew tool. Killing is the Jew way.

Stop the Jew – Think Peace

YetAnotherAnon , says: Show Comment January 13, 2020 at 12:02 pm GMT
@RouterAl "Jew Jack Straw was everything you would expect from Jew"

I seem to recall a piece in an Israeli paper saying he wasn't Jewish. It was quite witty, saying IIRC that although he looked like a shul trustee and his career trajectory (student politics then law then media) was classically Jewish, he has (as wiki says) only one Jewish great-grandparent.

From wiki

"In 2013, at a round table event of the Global Diplomatic Forum at the UK's House of Commons, Straw (who has Jewish heritage) was quoted by Israeli politician Einat Wilf, one of the panelists at the forum, as having said that among the main obstacles to peace was the amount of money available to Jewish organizations in the US, which controlled US foreign policy, and also Germany's "obsession" with defending Israel."

YetAnotherAnon , says: Show Comment January 13, 2020 at 12:12 pm GMT
@dimples "Its definitely a winning philosophy, but only if you are sure you are going to win in the first place."

Yes, it didn't do the losers much good at Nuremberg, although Germany had explained the attack of June 22 as a pre-emptive strike – " Therefore Russia has broken its treaties and is about to attack Germany. I have ordered the German armed forces to oppose this threat with all their strength ".

Cowboy , says: Show Comment January 13, 2020 at 12:18 pm GMT

"The Bethlehem Doctrine is that states have a right of "pre-emptive self-defence" against "imminent" attack. That is something most people, and most international law experts and judges, would accept."

So Operation Barbarossa was legal. But we knew that already because not only Germany, but Romania, Finland, Italy, Hungary, Slovakia and Croatia ( wiki doesn't mention the Spanish Azul division) all attacked due to the "imminent threat" of Stalin, who certainly had a long history of war crimes, the most recent being his invasions of Poland, Latvia, Estonia, Romania and even Finland.

Additionally, 400,000 of the Waffen SS were non-Germanic, yet wiki prefaces its description of Barbarossa as "The operation put into action Nazi Germany's ideological goal of conquering the western Soviet Union so as to repopulate it with Germans." .

The more things change, the more the lies stay the same. Like Hitler, Soleimani was a