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The Great Democratic Party Betrayal:
Pro-War Neoliberal Democrats as Vichy Left

News Neoliberalism as Trotskyism for the rich Recommended Links Bill Clinton, the man who sold Democratic Party to Wall Street and helped FIRE sector to convert the country into casino Robert Rubin, the man who helped to convert the USA into banana republic Lawrence Summers Krugman
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The failure of today’s war advocates to learn from previous disasters makes their position that much worse. But the same was  true in 1914.

We can consider Bill Clinton to be the founder of "Vichy left", a pro-war neoliberal democrats, not that different from classic neocons.

Contrary to what US media say, Bill and Hillary Clinton are certainly not liberals or progressives, but typical run-of-the-mill neoliberals, with distinct militarism bent (despite, of may be due to the fact that Bill Clinton was Vietnam War Dodger). Hillary is really unrepentant neocon warmonger in best traditions of Madeleine Albright

Bill Clinton sold the Democratic Party to Wall Street, gave us NAFTA, repeal of Glass Steagill, deregulation of media, etc. He essentially switched  Democrats from the policy of Americanism (or "America first" in Trump terms) – focusing on what’s good for America’s middle class – to a policy of neoliberal globalism, focusing on how to make money for transnational corporations who can move their wealth and workers to foreign countries all to the detriment of the American worker and the American economy.

Speaking of "Clinton family" Hillary is a war hawk and supported TPP. During her tenure as the Secretary of State turned "Public Service" into shady, lucrative business. In a nutshell, they got rich by making super big $$$ speeches to shady groups and persons who wanted to influence in the US government. Bill's speech fees skyrocketed when she became Secretary of State. See Clinton Cash

Bill Clinton was a staunch neoliberal, one of 12 apostils of deregulation. He also is a kind of Judas Iscariot of Democratic Party who helped to sell Democratic Party to Wall Street for an annual "pension" about 20 silver coins (sorry million of USD), delivered via speakers fees. He can can be viewed as a Godfather of kleptocratic neocons called Mayberry Machiavellians. He also was the first the neoconservative president, completely in bed with Likud lobby.

The President which destroyed the USA relations with post-Soviet Russia by attack on Serbia (On 24 March 1999, Primakov was heading to Washington, D.C. for an official visit. Flying over the Atlantic Ocean, he learned that NATO had started to bomb Yugoslavia. Primakov cancelled the visit, ordered the plane to turn around over the ocean and returned to Moscow in a maneuver dubbed "Primakov's Loop". Yevgeny Primakov ). His main achievements were:

The collapse and subsequent economic rape of the USSR region in 1991-1998 was a huge stimulus for the US economy. Something like 300 millions of new customers overnight for many products and huge expansion of the dollar zone, which partially compensates for the loss of EU to euro.

Even if we count just the cash absorbed by the region, it will be a major economic stimulus. All-it-all it was Bernanke size if we add buying assets for pennies on the dollar.

Actually, Bill Clinton put a solid fundament for subsequent deterioration relations with Russia. His semi-successful attempt to colonize Russia (under Yeltsin Russia was a semi-colony and definitely a vassal state of the USA) backfired.

Now the teeth of dragon planted by Slick Bill (of Kosovo war fame) are visible in full glory. Russian elite no longer trusts the US elite and feels threatened.

Series of female sociopath (or borderline personalities) in the role of Secretaries of State did not help either. The last one, "We came, we saw, he died" Hillary and her protégé Victoria Nuland (which actually was a close associate of Dick Cheney http://www.slate.com/articles/news_and_politics/war_stories/2005/11/president_cheney.html ) are actually replay of unforgettable Madeleine Albright with her famous a 60 Minutes segment in which Lesley Stahl asked her "We have heard that half a million children have died. I mean, that's more children than died in Hiroshima. And, you know, is the price worth it?" and Albright replied "we think the price is worth it."

Selling neoliberalism under the disguise of triangulation

The term was first used by President of the United States Bill Clinton's chief political advisor Dick Morris as a way to describe his strategy for getting Clinton reelected in the 1996 presidential election. In Dick Morris' words, triangulation meant "the president needed to take a position that not only blended the best of each party's views but also transcended them to constitute a third force in the debate." In news articles and books, it is sometimes referred to as "Clintonian triangulation". Morris advocated a set of policies that were different from the traditional policies of the Democratic Party. These policies included deregulation and balanced budgets.

One of the most widely cited capstones of Clinton's triangulation strategy was when, in his 1996 State of the Union Address, Clinton declared that the "era of big government is over."[5]

Politicians alleged to have used triangulation more recently include US President Barack Obama,[6][7] former Senator Hillary Clinton, Tony Blair with "New Labour" in the United Kingdom, Jean Chrétien and Paul Martin with the Liberal Party of Canada, Fredrik Reinfeldt with "The New Moderates" in Sweden, and Bob Hawke, Paul Keating, and Kevin Rudd of the Australian Labor Party. In France, the Socialist candidate in the 2007 presidential election, Ségolène Royal, advocated “military supervision” (encadrement militaire) for first offenders.

During the 2010 State of the Union Address, President Obama insisted that he would remain with his agenda in the face of criticism, rather than resort to triangulation.[5]

The Third Way actually means neoliberalism

The term "Third Way" was picked up in the 1950s by German ordoliberal economists such as Wilhelm Röpke, resulting in the development of the concept of the social market economy -- an early attempt to justify neoliberalism. Later Röpke distanced himself from the term and located the social market economy as "first way" in the sense of an advancement of the free market economy. Most significantly, Harold Macmillan, British Prime Minister from 1957 to 1963, based his philosophy of government on what he entitled in a book, The Middle Way

In politics, the Third Way is a set of neoliberal policies that on the surface tries to reconcile right-wing and left-wing politics by selling trade union interests to the higher bidder under the smokescreen of adopting synthesis of right-wing economic and left-wing social policies. The Third Way was by proponents of neoliberalism as an attempt to weaken power of the state to regulated transnational corporations and discredit economic interventionist policies that had previously been popularized by Keynesianism. It rise corresponds to the rise of popularity for neoliberalism and the New Right. The Third Way managed completely co-opt and destroy some Democratic Parties (in the USA, GB and Germany).

Major Third Way social democratic proponent Tony Blair claimed that the socialism he advocated was different from traditional conceptions of socialism. Blair said "My kind of socialism is a set of values based around notions of social justice ... Socialism as a rigid form of economic determinism has ended, and rightly". Blair referred to it as "social-ism" that involves politics that recognized individuals as socially interdependent, and advocated social justice, social cohesion, equal worth of each citizen, and equal opportunity.

Third Way social democratic theorist Anthony Giddens has said that the Third Way rejects the traditional conception of socialism, and instead accepts the conception of socialism as conceived of by Anthony Crosland as an ethical doctrine that views social democratic governments as having achieved a viable ethical socialism by removing the unjust elements of capitalism by providing social welfare and other policies, and that contemporary socialism has outgrown the Marxian claim for the need of the abolition of capitalism.

Blair in 2009 publicly declared support for a "new capitalism" -- neoliberalism.

It supports the pursuit of greater egalitarianism in society through action to increase the distribution of skills, capacities, and productive endowments, while rejecting income redistribution as the means to achieve this. Like neoliberalism in general it emphasizes commitment to balanced budgets, an emphasis on personal responsibility, decentralization of government power to the lowest level possible to restore the power of financial oligarchy), encouragement of public-private partnerships, improving labor supply (with Wal-Mart and McDonalds as two examples what they can do for impoverishing labor class), privatizing of education, protection of transnational corporations, which are above the law.

It been heavily criticized by many social democrats, democratic socialists and communists in particular as a betrayal of left-wing values.


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[Nov 23, 2020] Neocon chickenhawks are back in power

Full spectrum dominance theorists are dusted off and put in key positions in new administration. Instead of punishment and jail terms Russiagaters got promotion.
Nov 23, 2020 | www.rt.com

Biden signals US return to full-on globalism and foreign meddling by picking interventionist Anthony Blinken as secretary of state

Joe Biden has named Anthony Blinken – an advocate for isolating Russia, cozying up to China and intervening in Syria – as secretary of state, cementing a foreign policy built on military forays and multi-national motivations.

Biden, the nominal president-elect, announced his selection of Blinken along with other members of his foreign-policy and national-security team, which is filled with such veteran Washington insiders as John Kerry, the new climate czar and formerly secretary of state in the Obama-Biden administration.

READ MORE: Biden supporters rush to defend reported Sec-of-State pick Antony Blinken, who 'got rich off corporate consulting'

Blinken, a long-time adviser to Biden and deputy secretary of state under President Barack Obama, has been hailed by fellow Democrats and globalists, such as retired General Barry McCaffrey, as an experienced bureaucrat with "global contacts and respect." Enrico Letta, dean of the Paris School of International Affairs, called Biden's choice the "right step to relaunch transatlantic ties."

He was even praised for a 2016 appearance on the Sesame Street children's television program, where he explained to the show's 'Grover' character the benefits of accepting refugees.

While some critics focused on how Blinken " got rich working for corporate clients " during President Donald Trump's term in office, the new foreign-affairs chief's neoconservative policy recommendations might be cause for greater concern. He advocated for the Iraq War and the bombings of such countries as Libya and Yemen.

ALSO ON RT.COM Michele Flournoy might be breaking a glass ceiling as Pentagon chief, but even feminists aren't buying

Blinken is still arguing for a resurgence in Washington's military intervention in Syria. He lamented in a May interview that the Obama-Biden administration hadn't done enough to prevent a "horrific situation" in Syria, and he faulted Trump for squandering what remaining leverage the US had on the Bashar Assad regime by pulling troops out of the country.

"Our leverage is vastly even less than it was, but I think we do have points of leverage to try to effectuate some more positive developments," Blinken said. For instance, US special forces in northeast Syria are located near Syrian oil fields. "The Syrian government would love to have dominion over those resources. We should not give that up for free."

Blinken also sees Biden strengthening NATO, isolating Russia politically and " confronting Mr. [President Vladimir] Putin for his aggressions."

ALSO ON RT.COM The return of the Obama 'adults' in a Joe Biden administration is likely to spell ruin for America

As for China, Blinken has said Washington needs to look for ways to cooperate with Beijing. Reinvesting in international alliances that were weakened by Trump will help the Biden administration deal with China "from a position of strength" as it pushes back against the Chinese Communist Party's human-rights abuses, he said.

[Nov 23, 2020] Administrations change but Full Spectrum Dominance Doctine and the desire to portect and emand global neoliberal empire controlled from Washinton is intact. It will eventually banrupt the country much like was the case with the British Empire

Highly recommended!
Neocons still dominate both the State Department and NSC. That's bad.
Nov 23, 2020 | www.zerohedge.com

Top Biden Advisors Flournoy & Blinken Promise More Secretive 'Permanent War' Policy - Zero Hedge

Authored by Dan Cohen via TheGrayZone.com,

Throughout his campaign, Joe Biden railed against Donald Trump's 'America First' foreign policy, claiming it weakened the United States and left the world in disarray. "Donald Trump's brand of America First has too often led to America alone," Biden proclaimed.

He pledged to reverse this decline and recover the damage Trump did to America's reputation. While Donald Trump called for making America Great Again, Biden seeks to Make the American Empire Great Again .

Joe Biden: "Tonight, the whole world is watching America. And I believe at our best, America is a beacon for the globe. We will lead not only by the example of our power, but by the power of our example."

Among the president-elect's pledges is to end the so-called forever wars – the decades-long imperial projects in Afghanistan and Iraq that began under the Bush administration.

"It's long past time we end the forever wars which have cost us untold blood and treasure," Biden has said.

Yet Biden – a fervent supporter of those wars – will delegate that duty to the most neoconservative elements of the Democratic Party and ideologues of permanent war .

Michele Flournoy and Tony Blinken sit atop Biden's thousands-strong foreign policy brain trust and have played central roles in every U.S. war dating back to the Bill Clinton administration.

During the Trump era, they've cashed in through WestExec Advisors – a corporate consulting firm that has become home for Obama administration officials awaiting a return to government.

https://lockerdome.com/lad/13084989113709670?pubid=ld-dfp-ad-13084989113709670-0&pubo=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.zerohedge.com&rid=www.zerohedge.com&width=890

Flournoy is Biden's leading pick for Secretary of Defense and Blinken is expected to be the president's National Security Advisor.

Biden's foxes guard the henhouse

Since the 1990s, Flournoy and Blinken have steadily risen through the ranks of the military-industrial complex, shuffling back and forth between the Pentagon and hawkish think-tanks funded by the U.S. government, weapons companies, and oil giants.

Under Bill Clinton, Flournoy was the principal author of the 1996 Quadrinellial Defense Review, the document that outlined the U.S. military's doctrine of permanent war – what it called "full spectrum dominance."

Flournoy called for "unilateral use of military power" to ensure "uninhibited access to key markets, energy supplies, and strategic resources."

https://www.youtube.com/embed/ivFFZ95EQvY

This video report was originally published at Behind The Headlines . Support the independent journalism initiative here .

As Bush administration officials lied to the world about Saddam Hussein's supposed WMD's, Flournoy remarked that "In some cases, preemptive strikes against an adversary's [weapons of mass destruction] capabilities may be the best or only option we have to avert a catastrophic attack against the United States."

Tony Blinken was a top advisor to then-Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chair Joe Biden, who played a key role in shoring up support among the Democrat-controlled Senate for Bush's illegal invasion of Iraq.

During the run-up to the invasion of Iraq, Biden declared, "In my judgment, President Bush is right to be concerned about Saddam Hussein's relentless pursuit of weapons of mass destruction."

As Iraq was plunged into chaos and bloodshed, Flournoy was among the authors of a paper titled "Progressive Internationalism" that called for a "smarter and better" style of permanent war . The paper chastised the anti-war left and stated that "Democrats will maintain the world's most capable and technologically advanced military, and we will not flinch from using it to defend our interests anywhere in the world."

With Bush winning a second term, Flournoy advocated for more troop deployments from the sidelines.

In 2005, Flournoy signed onto a letter from the neoconservative think tank Project for a New American Century, asking Congress to "increase substantially the size of the active duty Army and Marine Corps (by) at least 25,000 troops each year over the next several years."

In 2007, she leveraged her Pentagon experience and contacts to found what would become one of the premier Washington think tanks advocating endless war across the globe: the Center for a New American Security (CNAS). CNAS is funded by the U.S. government, arms manufacturers, oil giants, Silicon Valley tech giants, billionaire-funded foundations, and big banks.

Flournoy joined the Obama administration and was appointed as under secretary of defense for policy, the position considered the "brains" of the Pentagon. She was keenly aware that the public was wary of more quagmires. In the 2010 Quadrennial Defense Review, she crafted a new concept of warfare that would expand the permanent war state while giving the appearance of a drawdown.

Flournoy wrote that "unmanned systems hold great promise" – a reference to the CIA's drone assassination program. This was the Obama-era military doctrine of hybrid war. It called for the U.S. to be able to simultaneously wage war on numerous fronts through secret warfare, clandestine weapons transfers to proxies, drone strikes, and cyber-attacks – all buttressed with propaganda campaigns targeting the American public through the internet and corporate news media.

Architects of America's Hybrid wars

Flournoy continued to champion the endless wars that began in the Bush-era and was a key architect of Obama's disastrous troop surge in Afghanistan. As U.S. soldiers returned in body bags and insurgent attacks and suicide bombings increased some 65% from 2009 and 2010, she deceived the Senate Armed Services Committee, claiming that the U.S. was beginning to turn the tide against the Taliban: "We are beginning to regain the initiative and the insurgency is beginning to lose momentum."

Even with her lie that the U.S. and Afghan government were starting to beat the Taliban back, Flournoy assured the senate that the U.S. would have to remain in Afghanistan long into the future: "We are not leaving any time soon even though the nature and the complexion of the commitment may change over time."

Ten years later – as the Afghan death toll passed 150,000 – Flournoy continued to argue against a U.S. withdrawal: "I would certainly not advocate a US or NATO departure short of a political settlement being in place."

That's the person Joe Biden has tasked with ending the forever war in Afghanistan. But in Biden's own words, he'll "bring the vast majority of our troops home from Afghanistan" implying some number of American troops will remain, and the forever war will be just that. Michele Flournoy explained that even if a political settlement were reached, the U.S. would maintain a presence.

Michele Flournoy: "If we are fortunate enough to see a political settlement reached, it doesn't mean that the US role or the international community is over. Afghanistan without outside investment is not a society that is going to survive and thrive. In no case are we going to be able to wash our hands of Afghanistan and walk away nor should we want to. This is something where we're going to have to continue to be engaged, just the form of engagement may change."

In 2011, the Obama-era doctrine of smart and sophisticated warfare was unveiled in the NATO regime-change war on Libya.

Moammar Gaddafi – the former adversary who sought warm relations with the U.S. and had given up his nuclear weapons program – was deposed and sodomized with a bayonet.

Flournoy, Hillary Clinton's State Department, and corporate media were in lockstep as they waged an elaborate propaganda campaign to deceive the U.S. public that Gadaffi's soldiers were on a Viagra-fueled rape and murder spree that demanded a U.S. intervention.

Fox News: "Susan Rice reportedly told a security council meeting that Libyan troops are being given viagra and are engaging in sexual violence."

MSNBC jumped on the propaganda bandwagon, claiming: "New reports emerge that the LIbyan dictator gave soldiers viagra-type pills to rape women who are opposed to the government."

So did CNN.

As the Libyan ambassador to the US alleged "raping, killing, mass graves," ICC Chief Prosecutor Manuel Ocampo claimed: "It's like a machete. Viagra is a tool of massive rapes."

All of this was based on a report from Al Jazeera – the media outlet owned by the Qatari monarchy that was arming extremist militias in Libya to overthrow the government.

Yet an investigation by the United Nations called the rape claims "hysteria." Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch found no credible evidence of even a single rape.

Even after Libya was descended into strife and the deception of Gadaffi's forces committing rape was debunked, Michele Flournoy stood by her support for the war: "I supported the intervention in Libya on humanitarian grounds. I think we were right to do it."

Tony Blinken, then Obama's deputy national security advisor, also pushed for regime change in Libya. He became Obama's point man on Syria, pushed to arm the so-called "moderate rebels" that fought alongside al-Qaeda and ISIS, and designed the red line strategy to trigger a full-on U.S. intervention. Syria, he told the public, wasn't anything like the other wars the U.S. had waging for more than a decade.

Tony Blinken: "We are doing this in a very different way than in the past. We're not sending in hundreds of thousands of American troops. We're not spending trillions of American dollars. We're being smart about this. This is a sustainable way to get at the terrorists and it's also a more effective way."

Blinken added: "This is not open-ended, this is not boots on the ground, this is not Iraq, it's not Afghanistan, it's not even Libya. The more people understand that, the more they'll understand the need for us to take this limited but effective action ."

Despite Blinken's promises that it would be a short affair, the war on Syria is now in its ninth year. An estimated half a million people have been killed as a result and the country is facing famine.

Largely thanks to the policy of using "wheat to apply pressure" – a recommendation of Flournoy and Blinken's CNAS think tank.

https://platform.twitter.com/embed/index.html?dnt=false&embedId=twitter-widget-0&frame=false&hideCard=false&hideThread=false&id=1141440589143126021&lang=en&origin=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.zerohedge.com%2Fgeopolitical%2Ftop-biden-advisors-flournoy-blinken-promise-more-secretive-permanent-war-policy&siteScreenName=zerohedge&theme=light&widgetsVersion=ed20a2b%3A1601588405575&width=550px

When the Trump administration launched airstrikes on Syria based on mere accusations of a chemical attack, Tony Blinken praised the bombing, claiming Assad had used the weapon of mass destruction sarin. Yet there was no evidence for this claim, something even then-secretary of Defense James Mattis admitted: "So I can not tell you that we had evidence even though we had a lot of media and social media indicators that either chlorine or sarin were used ."

While jihadist mercenaries armed with U..S-supplied weapons took over large swaths of Syria, Tony Blinken played a central role in a coup d'etat in Ukraine that saw a pro-Russia government overthrown in a U.S.-orchestrated color revolution with neo-fascist elements agitating on the ground.

At the time, he was ambivalent about sending lethal weapons to Ukraine, instead opting for economic pressure.

Tony Blinken: "We're working, as I said, to make sure that there's a cost exacted of Russia and indeed that it feels the pressure. That's what we're working on. And when it comes to military assistance, we're looking at it. The facts are these: Even if assistance were to go to Ukraine that would be very unlikely to change Russia's calculus or prevent an invasion."

Since then, fascist militias have been incorporated into Ukraine's armed forces. And Tony Blinken urged Trump to send them deadly weapons – something Obama had declined to do.

But Trump obliged.

The Third Offset

While the U.S. fueled wars in Syria and Ukraine, the Pentagon announced a major shift called the Third Offset strategy – a reference to the cold war era strategies the U.S. used to maintain its military supremacy over the Soviet Union.

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The Third Offset strategy shifted the focus from counterinsurgency and the war on terror to great power competition against China and Russia. It called for a technological revolution in warfighting capabilities, development of futuristic and autonomous weapons, swarms of undersea and airborne drones, hypersonic weapons, cyber warfare, machine-enhanced soldiers, and artificial intelligence making unimaginably complex battlefield decisions at speeds incomprehensible to the human mind. All of this would be predicated on the Pentagon deepening its relationship with Silicon Valley giants that it birthed decades before: Google and Facebook.

The author of the Third Offset, former undersecretary of defense Robert Work, is a partner of Flournoy and Blinken's at WestExec Advisors. And Flournoy has been a leading proponent of this dangerous new escalation .

In June, Flournoy published a lengthy commentary laying out her strategy called " Sharpening the U.S. Military's Edge: Critical Steps for the Next Administration ."

She warned that the United States is losing its military technological advantage and reversing that must be the Pentagon's priority. Without it, Flournoy warned that the U.S. might not be able to defeat China in Asia: "That technological investment is still very important for the United States to be able to offset what will be quantitative advantages and home theater advantages for a country like China if we ever had to deal with a conflict in Asia, in their backyard."

While Flournoy has called for ramping up U.S. military presence and exercises with allied forces in the region, she went so far as to call for the U.S. to increase its destructive capabilities so much that it could launch a blitzkrieg style-attack that would wipe out the entire Chinese navy and all civilian merchant ships in the South China Sea . Not only a blatant war crime but a direct attack on a nuclear power that would spell the third world war.

At the same time, Biden has announced he'll take an even more aggressive and confrontational stance against Russia , a position Flournoy shares: "We need to invest to ensure that we maintain the military edge that we will need in certain critical areas like cyber and electronic warfare and precision strike, to again underwrite deterrence, to make sure Vladimir Putin does not miscalculate and think that he can cross a border into Europe or cross a border and threaten us militarily."

As for ending the forever wars, Tony Blinken says not so fast: "Large scale, open-ended deployment of large standing US forces in conflict zones with no clear strategy should end and will end under his watch . But we also need to distinguish between, for example, these endless wars with the large scale open ended deployment of US forces with, for example, discreet, small-scale sustainable operations, maybe led by special forces, to support local actors In ending the endless wars I think we have to be careful to not paint with too broad a brush stroke."

The end of forever wars?

So Biden will end the forever wars, but not really end them. Secret wars that the public doesn't even know the U.S. is involved in – those are here to stay.

In fact, leaving teams of special forces in place throughout the Middle East is part and parcel of the Pentagon's shift away from counterinsurgency and towards great power competition.

The 2018 National Defense Strategy explains that, "Long-term strategic competitions with China and Russia are the principal priorities" and the U.S. will "consolidate gains in Iraq and Afghanistan while moving to a more resource-sustainable approach."

As for the catastrophic war on Yemen, Biden has said he'll end U.S. support; but in 2019, Michele Flournoy argued against ending arms sales to Saudi Arabia .

Biden pledged he will rejoin the Iran deal as a starting point for new negotiations. However, Trump's withdrawal from the deal discredited the Iranian reformists who seek engagement with the west and empowered the principlists who see the JCPOA as a deal with the devil.

In Latin America, Biden will revive the so-called anti-corruption campaigns that were used as a cover to oust the popular social democrat Brazilian president Lula da Silva.

His Venezuela policy appears little different from Trump's – sanctions and regime change.

In Central America, Biden has presided over a four billion dollar package to support corrupt right-wing governments and neoliberal privatization projects, fueling destabilization and sending vulnerable masses fleeing north to the United States.

Behind their rhetoric, Biden, Flournoy, and Blinken will seek nothing less than global supremacy , escalating a new and even more dangerous arms race that risks the destruction of humanity. That's what Joe Biden calls "decency" and "normalcy."

naughty.boy , 14 hours ago

deep state will bankrupt the USA with forever wars.

Distant_Star , 14 hours ago

Yes. As a bonus neither of these Deep State wretches has even seen a shot fired in anger. They are too "important" to be at risk.

[Nov 23, 2020] Biden to Name Russia Hoaxer, CNN Analyst Tony Blinken Secretary of State

Nov 23, 2020 | www.breitbart.com

Former Vice President Joe Biden is reportedly set to announce this week that Tony Blinken, who supported the idea of "Russia collusion," would be his Secretary of State.

Bloomberg News reported Sunday evening:

President-elect Joe Biden intends to name his longtime adviser Antony Blinken as secretary of State, according to three people familiar with the matter, setting out to assemble his cabinet even before Donald Trump concedes defeat.

In addition, Jake Sullivan, formerly one of Hillary Clinton's closest aides, is likely to be named Biden's national security adviser, according to two people familiar with the matter. An announcement is expected Tuesday, the people said.

Blinken, who served as deputy secretary of state and deputy national security advisor under President Barack Obama, has also been a New York Times opinion writer and a "global affairs analyst" for CNN. In that capacity, he supported the "Russia collusion" hoax.

As Breitbart News reported in 2017, Blinken told CNN: "The president's ongoing collusion with Russia's plans is really striking, intentional or not." He said that Russia had sown doubt about American elections and institutions.

(Subsequently, an investigation by Special Counsel Robert Mueller found no evidence of any collusion between Russia and the Trump campaign.)

Blinken also apologized earlier this year to left-wing anti-Israel radical Linda Sarsour, regarded by many critics ( even on the left) as an antisemite, after the Biden campaign tried to distance itself from her views.

He is also married to Evan Ryan, a former aide to then-First Lady Hillary Clinton. Ryan worked for Clinton at a time when Clinton's chief of staff, Margaret Williams, acknowledged accepting a campaign donation from entrepreneur Johnny Chien Chuen Chung.

Chung said that the donation was meant to help Clinton pay for Christmas receptions for the Democratic National Committee at the White House, in exchange for "VIP treatment for a delegation of visiting Chinese businessmen," according to the Los Angeles Times .

Biden is expected to name several potential Cabinet nominees in the coming days.

Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News and the host of Breitbart News Sunday on Sirius XM Patriot on Sunday evenings from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. ET (4 p.m. to 7 p.m. PT). His newest e-book is The Trumpian Virtues: The Lessons and Legacy of Donald Trump's Presidency . His recent book, RED NOVEMBER , tells the story of the 2020 Democratic presidential primary from a conservative perspective. He is a winner of the 2018 Robert Novak Journalism Alumni Fellowship. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak .

[Nov 23, 2020] The Trump trap: Biden's own rhetoric has cornered him into carrying on Trump's foreign policy

Nov 23, 2020 | www.rt.com

Scott Ritter Scott Ritter

is a former US Marine Corps intelligence officer and author of ' SCORPION KING : America's Suicidal Embrace of Nuclear Weapons from FDR to Trump.' He served in the Soviet Union as an inspector implementing the INF Treaty, in General Schwarzkopf's staff during the Gulf War, and from 1991-1998 as a UN weapons inspector. Follow him on Twitter @RealScottRitter 21 Nov, 2020 13:52 Joe Biden thinks he can save America and the world from four years of Donald Trump. Instead, Biden will find himself in a foreign policy trap where his tough guy rhetoric compels him to finish what Trump started.

If one listens to Joe Biden and his closest national security advisors, all it will take to undo four years of Trump-era foreign policy is a few dozen strokes of the pen. According to the plan, the presumptive president-elect will sign off on a series of executive orders which reverse the course charted by Trump, returning America back to the path of greatness derived from undisputed global leadership that had been the trademark of the Obama years, when Biden reigned as vice president and Barack's right-hand man.

Rejoining the Paris Climate Accord, the Iran nuclear agreement and the World Health Organization are all actions Biden can take as soon as he takes office. Reversing Trump's troop withdrawal from Afghanistan and halting the redeployment of US forces from Germany are also high on Biden's 'to do' list. However, simply reversing a decision made over the course of the past four years does not reset the clock; for example, the world has moved on regarding climate change, with nations like China taking the lead in promulgating plans for reaching a "carbon zero" posture by 2060. Biden claims he can do this by 2050, but American domestic political reality, shaped by an economy fine-tuned by Trump and inherently resistant to the kind of economic change that would need to occur to make the Biden climate change plan viable, may have something to say about that timetable.

The Iran deal

The Iran nuclear deal finds Biden trapped by his own hardline rhetoric, setting conditions that are as unrealistic as they are unobtainable (for instance, requiring Iran to renegotiate key aspects of the 2015 Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, or JCPOA, as a pre-condition for the US rejoining that pact). Iran's foreign minister, Mohammad Javad Zarif, recognizing the bad position Biden's mouth has placed its owner in, has wisely noted that Iran can return to its JCPOA commitments simply by Biden signing an executive order cancelling the Trump sanctions. This is one executive order Biden likely will not sign, because it requires him to certify the JCPOA as being good as written, something he has already articulated against.

ALSO ON RT.COM Israel lovers Pompeo and Trump are burying Palestine as they know Joe Biden won't have the power to dig the nation up again Afghanistan withdrawal

One of the first decisions Biden will be compelled to make upon assuming the presidency is how to proceed on the issue of US troops in Afghanistan. If the Trump reductions are completed as planned by January 15 (a big 'if', given the proclivity of the US military to lie to Trump about actual troop deployments), Biden will be pressured by the Pentagon to immediately redeploy up to 5,000 troops in order to create the force structure the Pentagon believes necessary to ensure stability while Afghanistan transitions to peace. This, of course, would kill the peace plan the US has in place with the Taliban, setting the stage for even more 'forever war'.

Regime change and more war

Other regional issues jump out – the ongoing effort to oust Nicolas Maduro in Venezuela, and the ongoing Saudi-led war in Yemen, to name two. Biden's anti-Maduro rhetoric is every bit as strong as Trump's, meaning there is little chance of a policy re-direct on this front. Likewise, if Trump fulfils threats to name the Houthi rebels in Yemen as a terrorist organization, it will be difficult for Biden politically to reverse that decision, or else be doing the bidding of Iran. Yemen will become another example of a 'forever war' living up to its name.

Awkward in Europe

Another issue Biden will be called upon to deal with is the ongoing American redeployment of troops out of Germany. Trump has committed to sending thousands of these redeployed troops to Poland, a move Biden will have difficulty reversing. In the end, Biden will be pressured to not only halt the withdrawal of US forces from Germany, but also find fresh troops to replace those headed for Poland. But such a commitment must be measured in relation to the ongoing controversy over the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline connecting Russia with Europe. Trump has put in place sanctions designed to halt the pipeline from being completed; Biden is likewise opposed to the pipeline reaching fruition. Getting Germany to commit to taking in US troops while blatantly interfering with German economic sovereignty is a balancing act Biden may not be up to carrying out.

Arms control deadlock

Likewise, Biden has indicated that he would be inclined to sign an extension to the soon-to-expire New START Treaty. Russia has long insisted that future arms control agreements must consider missile defense issues. The Trump administration has just tested a missile interceptor integral to the Aegis Ashore anti-missile system deployed in Romania and Poland in an anti-intercontinental ballistic missile configuration. The likelihood of Russia agreeing to any new arms control measures without a commitment on the part of a Biden administration to reduce and/or eliminate European-based missile defense systems is zero. So, too, is are the odds of a Biden administration doing away with missile defense in Europe. The result is an expensive arms race at a time when the US can afford it least.

ALSO ON RT.COM US' successful ICBM intercept test brings us closer to a nuclear war and proves Moscow's concerns were well grounded No thaw in the new Cold War

Finally, Biden inherits a policy posture toward both Russia and China which is as hostile a relationship as has existed since the Cold War. Russia's force posture in Europe is such that NATO would need to spend hundreds of billions of dollars to be in a realistic position to take on the Russian military in any conventional ground war in Europe. Moreover, it is unlikely Europe will agree to either the formal endorsement of such an objective, or the economic commitment needed to underwrite it. Complicating matters further is that China and Russia have reacted to the aggressive policies of the US, which pre-dated the Trump era, by considering the possibility of a formal alliance against what they term "western hegemony." Such an alliance would complicate any effort on the part of a Biden administration to back up the president-elect's pusillanimous rhetoric with actual muscle, since any conflict in Europe would automatically trigger a Pacific response, and vice versa.

China's dominance

Regardless of anything else, perhaps the biggest challenge facing a Biden administration will be in dealing with the consequences of Trump's decision to withdraw from the Obama-era Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), an abortive free trade agreement designed to keep China out while promoting American economic leadership. China, together with 14 other Asia-Pacific nations, recently signed what amounts to the world's largest free trade agreement. The signatories to this agreement, known as the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP), include the 10 countries comprising the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), along with China, Japan, South Korea, New Zealand, and Australia, and together account for around 30 percent of global GDP. The RCEP cements China's status as the dominant economic power in the Asia-Pacific regions, and represents a stunning reversal of fortune for the US, whose precipitous withdrawal from the TPP in 2017 paved the way for China's stunning diplomatic coup.

READ MORE Trump won, regardless of the election outcome because Trumpism is here to stay Trump won, regardless of the election outcome because Trumpism is here to stay

The collapse of the TPP, when combined with the economic crisis brought on by the Covid-19 pandemic, made the RCEP attractive to nations who looked to trade with China as the only viable means of rebuilding their stricken economies. The RCEP helps solidify the regional geopolitical objectives of the Chinese Belt and Road Initiative by opening the economies of the Asia-Pacific region to Chinese-funded development projects. The diplomatic victory of China in bringing the RCEP to fruition represents a stunning defeat for the US, which had been seeking regional support in its ongoing trade war with China. Moreover, given the linkage between economic and security issues, the fact that major regional allies such as Japan, South Korea, New Zealand and Australia have so decisively joined their economies to China's undermines ongoing US efforts to build a regional coalition designed to contain and eventually roll-back China's presence in the South China Sea. While President-elect Joe Biden has reached out to Japan and South Korea in an effort to reassure them of his administration's commitment to their security, a future Biden administration is ill-positioned to counter the economic influence China has locked itself into through the RCEP. From an economic perspective, the US 'pivot to Asia' has been effectively halted, with the Asia-Pacific nations now firmly in China's court.

From Europe, to South America, the Middle East, Southwest Asia, and on to the Pacific, President Joe Biden will be inheriting a world transformed by four years of Trump policies. While Biden has indicated that he is inclined to reverse many, if not all, of the Trump foreign policy "disasters" as soon as practical after assuming office, the reality is that he will find his hands tied by the combined impact of his own aggressive rhetoric, which in many instances paralleled the policies undertaken by Trump, or the fact that the geopolitical situation that exists today does not permit a return to the foreign policy of yore.

The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of RT.


[Nov 22, 2020] Biden's transition team is filled with war profiteers, Beltway chickenhawks, and corporate consultants by KEVIN GOSZTOLA

Nov 14, 2020 | thegrayzone.com

An eye-popping array of corporate consultants, war profiteers, and national security hawks have been appointed by President-elect Joe Biden to agency review teams that will set the agenda for his administration. A substantial percentage of them worked in the United States government when Barack Obama was president.

The appointments should provide a rude awakening to anyone who believed a Biden administration could be pressured to move in a progressive direction, especially on foreign policy.

If the agency teams are any indication, Biden will be firmly insulated from any pressure to depart from the neoliberal status quo, which the former vice president has pledged to restore. Instead, he is likely to be pushed in an opposite direction, towards an interventionist foreign policy dictated by elite Beltway interests and consumed by Cold War fever.

[Nov 22, 2020] Gates Stands By Statement That Biden Has Been Wrong On Nearly Every Major Foreign Policy Question - Video - RealClearPolitics

Nov 22, 2020 | www.realclearpolitics.com

Gates Stands By Statement That Biden Has Been Wrong On Nearly Every Major Foreign Policy Question Posted By Tim Hains
On Date May 13, 2019

Gates Stands By Statement That Biden Has Been Wrong On Nearly Every Major Foreign Policy Question

https://imasdk.googleapis.com/js/core/bridge3.426.0_en.html#goog_451601550

Robert Gates, who served as defense secretary for the Obama administration, paused for a moment and said "I don't know" in an interview Sunday when asked if he thinks former VP Joe Biden would be a good president.

CBS's "Face The Nation" host Margaret Brennan asked Gates if he stood by a statement from his memoir that Biden has "been wrong on nearly every major foreign policy and national security issue over the past four decades." Recommended

about:blank

https://c5x8i7c7.ssl.hwcdn.net/vplayer-parallel/20200902_2348/videojs/show.html?controls=1&loop=60&autoplay=0&tracker=e1abce3c-e73e-49fb-b4ea-8d734917d8cc&height=227&width=402&vurl=%2F%2Fa.jsrdn.com%2Fvideos%2Fdgv_rcp%2F20201121152807_5fb92b76e773e%2Fdgv_rcp_trending_articles_20201121152807_5fb92b76e773e_new.mp4&poster=%2F%2Fa.jsrdn.com%2Fvideos%2Fdgv_rcp%2F20201121152807_5fb92b76e773e%2Fdgv_rcp_trending_articles_20201121152807_5fb92b76e773e_new.jpg

me title=

MARGARET BRENNAN: I was rereading your memoir before we sat down to talk and you said in your memoir, Joe Biden is impossible not to like.

Quote: "He's a man of integrity, incapable of hiding what he really thinks, and one of those rare people you know you could turn to for help in a personal crisis. Still, I think he's been wrong on nearly every major foreign policy and national security issue over the past four decades."

Would he be an effective commander-in-chief?

ROBERT GATES: I-- I don't know. I don't know. I-- I think I stand by that statement. He and I agreed on some key issues in the Obama administration. We disagreed significantly on Afghanistan and some other issues. I think that the vice president had some issues with the military. So how he would get along with the senior military, and what that relationship would be, I just-- I think, it-- it would depend on the personalities at the time.

MARGARET BRENNAN: He's a peer of yours. Does that mean you're older?

ROBERT GATES: Yes.

MARGARET BRENNAN: You think he's right for this moment?

ROBERT GATES: I think I'm pretty busy and pretty active but I think-- I think having a President who is somebody our age or older, in the case of Senator Sanders, is- I think it's problematic. I think that you don't have the kind of energy that I think is required to be President. I think-- I'm not sure you have the intellectual acuity that you might have had in your sixties. So, I mean it's just a personal view. For me, the thought of taking on those responsibilities at this point in my life would be pretty daunting.

Watch the full interview:

https://www.youtube.com/embed/aUWvITlpKd4



[Nov 22, 2020] The truth about the Dem patchy honchos

Nov 22, 2020 | www.moonofalabama.org

J W , Nov 21 2020 9:19 utc | 52

American libs are just as fundamentally imperialist as the right, and their obsession with IdenPol garbage is just a smokescreen to pretend that they aren't.

[Nov 22, 2020] Biden's Deep State -

Nov 22, 2020 | www.zerohedge.com

Biden's Deep State


by Tyler Durden Sat, 11/21/2020 - 17:00 Twitter Facebook Reddit Email Print

Authored by Steve Brown via The Ron Paul Institute for Peace & Prosperity,

Philosopher Hannah Arendt once wrote about the banality of evil , and there's never been a more banal bunch than the foreign policy and security state crew Barak Obama surrounded himself with for eight years beside the possible exception of Bush's own Neocons .

Now after three years screaming about "Russian collusion" it appears the Evil Empire is about to regain its lost ground, championing new wars and more interventionist expansionism with a much greater role for the US military in the world.

Let's name names.

Pentagon

For the defense chief post, the Washington Post has portrayed the banal face of Michele Flournoy as the pick to 'restore stability' to the Pentagon , an entirely false assertion. Recall that Fluornoy promotes unilateral global US military intervention, and advocated the destruction of Libya in 2011. By the military-industrial revolving door , Flournoy enabled many Corporate weaponry contracts amounting to tens of millions. Likewise Fluornoy is on the Booz-Hamilton board, where the swamp cannot get any deeper. As if this wretched example of an agent-provocateur for war and destruction were not bad enough, Biden is reportedly considering Lockheed-Martin banal kingpin Jeh Johnson for the DoD position, too.

Lockheed director Johnson was employed by Rob Reiner and Atlantic editor arch-Neocon David Frum to run the Committee to Investigate Russia which mysteriously blew up as soon as the Mueller Report was released. Jeh Johnson has continued to warn of "Russian interference" in the US presidential election until now. Biden's anointing as president-elect has ended that. As Homeland Security head, Johnson authorized cages for holding immigrant children. He also supported the assassination of General Suleimani, and has voiced support for US wars in Syria, Iraq, and Afghanistan.

State

From Libya to Syria, Yemen, Ukraine and beyond, the banality of evil is perhaps best personified by Susan Rice – apparently Biden's premiere pick for Secretary. Rice was an abject failure at the United Nations, but all seems forgiven, probably at the behest of Biden's donors. After her failure at the UN, Obama kicked Rice upstairs to be his National Security Advisor, a position that does not require Senate approval.

https://lockerdome.com/lad/13084989113709670?pubid=ld-dfp-ad-13084989113709670-0&pubo=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.zerohedge.com&rid=www.zerohedge.com&width=890

An obvious war hawk in the mold of the Democrat's donor class, a Rice appointment could reinforce the liberal mantra that women can be just as good at interventionism as men, and ensure full re-establishment of the Neoliberal agenda in Washington. John Kerry has been flagged as a potential for State (again) too, but at age 77 and subsequent to the failure of the JCPOA Kerry is an unlikely pick.

Another potential pick among the banal Daughters of Darkness is Victoria Kagan-Nuland , architect of the 2014 debacle in Ukraine (among other things). Outed at State in an embarrassing act of what she called impressive statecraft and other embarrassing incidents, Nuland seems an unlikely choice. But Kagan-Nuland is as banal as banal can be, and Biden may somehow wish to reinforce his solidarity with the JTF and his donor class, on Israel.

National Security Advisor

Banality is certainly the mark of the beast here, in the form of Tony Blinken. Well in with Michele Flournoy (above) Blinken typifies the type of banality the Deep State engages in to promote its evil, with Blinken as successful as any other Deep State actor. A major hawk on Russia and war hawk in general, Blinken is an apologist for Israel . Blinken is a war hawk on Afghanistan and Syria too, and Blinken was directly involved in CIA operation Timber Sycamore . Oh, the banality.

Another model of banality is Leon CIA Panetta who so far claims that cruising the Monterey peninsula is more fun that being in Washington. But we know that's false and Panetta would be a logical pick. Besides being a hawk on everything, and laughing about the fact he has no idea how many wars Obama's America was fighting – because he lost count – Panetta is simply another sycophant for evil like Hannah Arendt portrayed in her study of Adolf Eichmann.

CIA

Banal of the banal is of course Mike Morell. This incredibly vacuous excuse for a human being has been hate-mongering for years. Beside his blatant pandering support for another banal and brutal warmonger – Hillary Clinton – Mike Morell is one Neoliberal who still maintains that Saddam Hussein actively aided and abetted al Qaeda with regard to the 911 attacks. But Morell simply and ultimately represents the banality of evil, just as Arendt depicted Adolf Eichmann, but in Morell's case succinctly summarized here by Ray McGovern .

United Nations

Outing the banality of the banal would be incomplete without mentioning Jen Psaki . Although a potential pick for White House Communications Director, why not promote an accomplished liar to a venue where accomplished lying really matters?

Conclusion

There is no indication that the United States as an entrenched warfare state will ever change its course until forced to. Mr Trump was incapable of enforcing that change. Sidelined by Russiagate psychosis , as a Beltway Neophyte and his own worst enemy at times, that sank Trump's agenda. The actions of Mr Trump now – to end the wars in Syria, Iraq, Afghanistan and Yemen -- should have been undertaken in earnest and without compromise years ago. Point being that Mr Trump's new appointments to the Pentagon – and let's hope CIA – will hopefully blunt the efficacy of Biden's bad actors going forward.

Regardless, characters the same or similar to the ones listed above will definitely infest Washington's infernal Beltway cesspool once again via Joe Biden make no mistake. And they will be meaner and nastier than ever before! Guaranteed.


Creative_Destruct , 2 hours ago

And the same old swamp slime (Morell, et al) waits eagerly to burst back in through the doors of power. New boss, same as the old(er) boss(es). Uuuuuuggh.

EndofTimes , 5 hours ago

Obama's 3rd Term. Swamp will grow like a tumor. These demons are shaking with excitement to get into office and fulfill the desires of the founders of the UN. Kill off America and establish a global government

truth or go home , 4 hours ago

Biden is 100% deep state puppet. He will say and do whatever they tell him to.

Dominion = Scytl = CIA = Deep State = Swamp

CIA threw the election. Trump team caught them.

Trump has already cut the CIA off at the knees. Getting ready to fill up Guantanamo again...

Giant war going on inside the gov right now - Biden enjoying the limelight before he is retired to his rocking chair.

CatInTheHat , 5 hours ago

NICE JOB Biden voters!!

You MORONS electing Obama 2.0 on STEROIDS is WHY we got a Trump in the first place

To Hell In A Handbasket , 4 hours ago

The USSA electorate are idiots, and divided idiots at that. You got Trump because the electorate was desperate, and you got Biden because the other half was desperate. That adds up to a desperate population. Your enemy is not voters from the other side of the Uniparty. Please get off the GOP vs DEMOCRAT horse$h1t.

Bay of Pigs , 3 hours ago

Quite an impressive list of Neoliberal globalist ****bags.

SabOObas , 3 hours ago

The establishment demonizes Trump for 4 years.

The sheeple voted to put the guy with 40 years of corruption under his belt in office, because the establishment said its good for you.

Jgault , 2 hours ago

It is always the small man, the inept man, the insecure man who has a need to demonstrate to the world his bravado with reckless and senseless gestures.

Biden and his brothel of advisors he surrounds himself with have perhaps the worst track record of international policy since Jimmy Carter, absolute proven failures and disasters in Ukraine, Syria, Lybia, and Egypt. This is the group that laid the intellectual groundwork for what would become the largest refugee crisis and humanitarian disaster in nearly 50 years.

Laughably, now the MSM is doing a complete 180 in their editorial view of troops in Afghanistan and Syria...what a shock!

Lacking foresight, insecure, lacking ethical standards and being given the ability to order troops, how could this possibly go wrong?

Trump was the first President in 30 years not to provoke any new millitary interventions, yet the world criticized him for his style. Let's see how long it takes for the world to start looking back to a more stable past.

ReadyForHillary , 3 hours ago

The Democrat party is the WAR party.

RumbleGuts , 4 hours ago

Another article that doesn't realize red and blue are the same team. Make no mistake, big baby bonespurs is in deep with the deep state. Think epstein. ;-)

Someone Else , 2 hours ago

Mike Morell, the most evil man to ever draw a breath, as CIA Director?

A Biden Presidency can never be allowed to happen.

flawse , 2 hours ago

There will not be a Biden presidency. There is obviously some other plan.

DebbieDowner , 3 hours ago

This author's last paragraph fails to acknowledge that the CIA and FBI has not obeyed Trump's (or any President's) orders in quite some time. Now is the time for someone to finally make a change and it took such a massive plan to expose them all to drain the swamp.


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Little Johnny Jewel , 5 hours ago

Caitlin Johnstone covered this a week ago

swampy war mongerers

[Nov 21, 2020] How 'Western' Media Select Their Foreign Correspondents

Nov 21, 2020 | www.moonofalabama.org

How 'Western' Media Select Their Foreign Correspondents gottlieb , Nov 20 2020 19:21 utc | 1

Did you ever wonder why 'western' mainstream media get stories about Russia and other foreign countries so wrong?

It is simple. They hire the most brainwashed, biased and cynic writers they can get for the job. Those who are corrupt enough to tell any lie required to support the world view of their editors and media owners.

They are quite upfront about it.

Here is evidence in form of a New York Times job description for a foreign correspondent position in Moscow:

Russia Correspondent

Job Description

Vladimir Putin's Russia remains one of the biggest stories in the world.

It sends out hit squads armed with nerve agents against its enemies, most recently the opposition leader Aleksei Navalny. It has its cyber agents sow chaos and disharmony in the West to tarnish its democratic systems, while promoting its faux version of democracy. It has deployed private military contractors around the globe to secretly spread its influence. At home, its hospitals are filling up fast with Covid patients as its president hides out in his villa.

If that sounds like a place you want to cover, then we have good news: We will have an opening for a new correspondent as Andy Higgins takes over as our next Eastern Europe Bureau Chief early next year.


bigger

To be allowed to write for the Times one must see the Russian Federation as a country that is ruled by just one man.

One must be a fervent believer in MI6 produced Novichok hogwash. One must also believe in Russiagate and in the multiple idiocies it produced even after all of them have been debunked.

One must know that vote counts in Russia are always wrong while U.S. vote counting is the most reliable ever. Russian private military contractors (which one must know to be evil men) are 'secretly deployed' to wherever the editors claim them to be. Russia's hospitals are of cause always much worse than ours.

Even when it is easy to check that Vladimir Putin (the most evil man ever) is at work in the Kremlin the job will require one to claim that he is hiding in a villa.

Most people writing for the Times will actually not believe the above nonsense. But the description is not for a position that requires one to weight and report the facts. It is for a job that requires one to lie. That the Times lists all the recent nonsense about Russia right at the top of the job description makes it clear that only people who support those past lies will be considered adequate to tell future lies about Russia.

No honest unbiased person will want such a job. But as it comes with social prestige, a good paycheck and a probably nice flat in Moscow the New York Times will surely find a number of people who are willing to sell their souls to take it.

Interestingly the job advertisement does not list Russian language capabilities as a requirement. It only says that 'Fluency in Russian is preferred'.

'Western' mainstream media are filled with such biased, cynic and self-censoring correspondents who have little if any knowledge of the country they are reporting from. It is therefore not astonishing that 'western' populations as well as their politicians have often no knowledge of what is really happening in the world.

Hilarious. Don't need no stinking Operation Mockingbird anymore. Just put out a want-ad and plenty of brainwashed folks will come flocking. Propaganda works.

powerandpeople , Nov 20 2020 19:29 utc | 2

Soomeone said:

"Journalism is printing what someone else does not want printed; everything else is public relations."

In this case "everything else is propaganda."

The job title is really 'Anti-Russia Propagandist'.

Jen , Nov 20 2020 19:31 utc | 3
This is such an odd job description with very few specific requirements and none detailing how much experience or what level of knowledge or skill is required (in the form of X number of years worked in some area requiring Russian language skills or university qualifications obtained) that I almost wonder if this advertisement is for real.

One notices also that "Vladimir Putin's Russia" is presented as a story. Everything else that follows in the second paragraph of the advertisement is also a story. Indeed everything in the news media industry is a "story" as if instead of employing investigative reporters on the beat grimly searching for hard facts like old pulp fiction detectives, the media now only wants Hollywood script writers or graduates straight out of creative writing courses.

But then I suppose whoever gets the job at the NYT can hardly do worse than what the hack Luke Harding did as The Fraudian's Moscow correspondent nearly 15 years ago, so much so that the Russian govt must have suspected that he was more than just a bad paranoid plagiarist ... he must have been a spy as well, that it would initially refuse to renew his visa. One would like to see the job specifications for the position of The Fraudian's Moscow reporter that Harding held for a number of years.

JimmyG. , Nov 20 2020 19:32 utc | 4
Incredible. What the acronym 'SMH' (shake my head) was invented for.

It's no wonder I switched off CBC radio, our national broadcaster here in Canada. Their music programs were okay, but every hour they had a news update, and those were stomach-turning. Superficial, biased, Empire-friendly nonsense...

Don Bacon , Nov 20 2020 19:32 utc | 5

Norman Solomon wrote about this problem fifteen years ago in his book "War Made Easy, How Presidents and Pundits Keep Spinning Us To Death"
. . .from Amazon: In War Made Easy, nationally syndicated columnist, media critic, and author Norman Solomon cuts through the dense web of spin to probe and scrutinize the key "perception management" techniques that have played huge rolls in the promotion of American wars in recent decades.

p.116

. . .The attitudes of reporters covering U.S. foreign policy officials are generally similar to the attitudes of those officials. "Most journalists who get plum foreign assignments already accept the assumptions of empire," according to longtime foreign correspondent Reese Erlick. He added, "I didn't meet a single foreign reporter in Iraq who disagreed with the notion that the U.S. and Britain have the right to overthrow the Iraq government by force. They disagreed only about timing, whether the action should be unilateral, and whether a long-term occupation is practical." After decades of freelancing for major U.S. news organizations, Erlich offered this blunt conclusion: "Money, prestige, career options, ideological predilections--combined with the down sides of filing stories unpopular with the government--all cast their influence on foreign correspondents. You don't win a Pulitzer prize for challenging the basic assumptions of empire."
uncle tungsten , Nov 20 2020 20:02 utc | 9

Thank you b.

Now here is a fine journalist they could simply contract for sane reporting on China . Plus excellent Russian analysis as well.

Good read with a link or two to consider.

Canadian Cents , Nov 20 2020 20:21 utc | 12

> social prestige, a good paycheck and a probably nice flat

The term that Paul Craig Roberts often uses, " presstitute ", comes to mind.

Echoing JimmyG. @4 and spudski @7, in Canada, our taxpayer-funded state news agency's flagship program "The National" gives us regular Two Minutes Hate pieces currently being churned out every two weeks or so by Moscow correspondent Chris Brown who fits this article's description to a T.

I've lost count of how many times he and CBC The National's editors have singled out Russia's handling of COVID-19 for criticism, when so many other countries have far worse per capita fatality numbers than Russia.

While decrying Russia's COVID-19 deaths, they, of course, never mention the fact that Canada has had more COVID-19 deaths per capita than Russia ...

Jpc , Nov 20 2020 21:00 utc | 15

It's absolutely pathetic.
5 years ago the truly great journalist Robert Fisk made the following observations during an interview with the journal.ie amongst others.
Back's up everything you have pointed out about the sheer disappearance of any impartial reportage from the NYT and printed media in general.

"Most newspapers that have lost circulation, particularly in the States, it's not because of the internet, it's because those newspapers were simply no good. When I go to San Francisco the coverage of the Middle East in its papers is frightened, cowardly, pathetic, there's no serious foreign coverage at all."

"Newspapers themselves are to blame for the deterioration in their readership. I read the New York Times when its free, period, it doesn't deserve to be paid for. It's not worth it.
It doesn't matter whether it's online or not. If a paper's not worth buying you'll read for free online regardless"

William Gruff , Nov 20 2020 21:03 utc | 17

"Most people writing for the Times will actually not believe the above nonsense."

Our host is much too charitable to the presstitutes. Those in the "Mockingbird" mass media eat their own effluent like a sort of group ouroboric scatophagia. To maintain their perverse form of "mental hygiene" they studiously avoid information sources outside of their own circular reprocessing of yesterday's delusions into fresh steaming piles for today's consumption. They have become so accustomed to feeding off their own delusions that if a hint of reality were to intrude into their looped intellectual food chain their minds would reject it like poison. They would likely exhibit physical symptoms, which doubtless would be attributed to evil Soviet mind rays from Havana.

Canadian Cents , Nov 20 2020 21:16 utc | 18

Quite scary how Western mainstream media are all marching in unison to the same beat.

Unfortunately it sounds like this creeping facism could get even worse:

Biden State Media Appointee Advocated Using Propaganda Against Americans

Stengel stated clearly that a "news cartel" of mainstream corporate media outlets had long dominated US society, but he bemoaned that those "cartels don't have hegemony like they used to."

Stengel made it clear that his mission is to counter the alternative perspectives given a voice by foreign media platforms that challenge the US-dominated media landscape.

"The bad actors use journalistic objectivity against us."

Wow ...

I clicked on the New York Times job link, and journalistic objectivity and integrity are nowhere to be found in the job descripton. But I did notice these lines that add to the ones that b brought to our attention:

We are looking for someone who will embrace the prospect of traversing 11 time zones to track a populace that is growing increasingly frustrated with an economy dragged down by corruption, cronyism and excessive reliance on natural resources. This posting offers the chance to chronicle the continuing reign of one of the world's most charismatic leaders, President Vladimir V. Putin.

Not to mention, Putin ushered in changes to the constitution, so he will likely stay in power for many years to come.

And, of course, we are on the cusp of a new, less Putin-friendly president in the US, which should only raise the temperature between Washington and Moscow.

Wow again ...

Don Bacon , Nov 20 2020 21:19 utc | 19

It's not Russia it's "Vladimir Putin's Russia," so that's one mandatory term checked off, i.e. personalizing the appointed enemy. But then we read "It sends out hit squads. . ." instead of the usual obligatory: 'The regime' . . . . .but the Times can't get everything right.

Paco , Nov 20 2020 21:21 utc | 20

A flat in Moscow!!! A soul could sold for it... but, there are job openings in Russia, here, a farmer is recruiting:

https://youtu.be/8HZ4DnVfWYQ

Kooshy , Nov 20 2020 22:07 utc | 24

The amount of hourly propaganda directed at and leveled at American people is unprecedented, I had not seen it this intense in past years it reminds me of my High school days in Shah's Iran. This kind and this intense of control on news can only be due to instability of the regime. IMO in coming Biden Adminstration regime will impose new rules for control of internet and access to foreign news. Currently using my Mobil cellular I can't access any Iranian news site.

kiwiklown , Nov 21 2020 1:30 utc | 37

"Those who are corrupt enough to tell any lie required to support the world view of their editors and media owners."

C S Lewis called this type bastards.

I agree, and hope they are reading this right now.

Oz , Nov 21 2020 0:32 utc | 36

https://marisol-nostromo.medium.com/the-unfinished-work-of-the-church-committee-f702ac8f94b1

[Nov 20, 2020] Why Biden Will Keep the US-Imposed Cold War Rolling

Nov 20, 2020 | www.counterpunch.org

Trump's Isolationism Masks Sinister Alliances

Was Trump an isolationist? Not really, though it's easy to see how he got this reputation, at first glance of his foreign policy.

He had an aggressive posture against Cuba, Iran, and Venezuela, with his illegal sanctions policy against these countries. He demonstrated total fealty to the Israeli project to annihilate Palestine. His "trade war" against China is sold as a way to rebuild the U.S. economy, but it is also about maintaining U.S. power; for what other purpose could instruments such as the Millennium Challenge Corporation and América Crece be used when they have been designed to advantage U.S. companies around the world?

Trump certainly attacked the Western military alliance system, trying to force NATO members to spend more on their military. But at the same time, Trump developed other military alliances: one of these, first developed by George W. Bush in 2007, is the Quadrilateral Security Dialogue, or Quad, which draws Australia, India, and Japan into a military alliance against China. At the same time, Trump drove an agenda in Latin America -- through the Lima Group (established in 2017) -- to create an alliance against Venezuela.

Why Biden Is Not a Multilateralist

The liberal media portrays Biden as a multilateralist -- but the evidence for this speculation on the president-elect's foreign policy is problematic, to say the least.

Biden wants to rebuild the Western military alliance system that Trump has eroded. An indication of Biden's enthusiasm was an early phone call to French President Emmanuel Macron, to suggest that the United States is back as a player in Europe. This is not an advance toward a multilateral world order, but rather a return to the old alliance system where the United States (with its Canadian and European allies) attempts to dominate the world system by the use of its military, diplomatic, and economic power.

Further evidence offered for Biden's multilateralism is his commitment to return the United States to the 2015 Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (or the Iran deal) and the 2016 Paris Agreement.

Why does Biden wish to return the United States to its commitments toward Iran? Obama entered this deal because the Europeans were desperate for a source of energy after the United States and France destroyed access to Libyan oil in NATO's 2011 war and hurt access to Russian natural gas because of the Ukraine conflict in 2014. Obama agreed to the Iran deal because the Europeans were desperate, not to line up with the demands of international law; Biden will give the Europeans this gift, welcomed by the Iranian people, in order to cement the Western alliance system. Meanwhile, Biden continues to talk about suffocating the Iranian people.

On climate, during the negotiations that resulted in the Paris deal during Obama's presidency, the United States watered down the text of the agreement, preventing a truly multilateral deal that would have accepted Western responsibility for a century of fossil fuel use. Again, there is no major commitment to save the planet in Biden's pledge to return to the Paris Agreement; the main agenda is to strengthen and subordinate the European countries to the U.S.-led alliance system.

Primacy Remains the U.S. Goal

The U.S. State Department's Policy Planning Staff wrote in the early years of the Cold War, "To seek less than preponderant power would be to opt for defeat. Preponderant power must be the object of U.S. policy." This desire for primacy remains the explicit U.S. policy. Trump, in his four years as president, did not depart from this policy. Nor has Biden in his five decades in public office. They might differ in their tone or in their strategy, but not in the pursuit of this goal. Biden's adviser Charles Kupchan has written a new book called Isolationism , which offers a clichéd view of U.S. foreign policy, and then concludes, "[T]he United States must reclaim its exceptionalist mantle"; this means that the United States must continue to seek primacy.

This goal of primacy has made it difficult for the U.S. elites to come to terms with the fact of the slow attrition of U.S. power since the illegal war on Iraq (2003) and the credit crisis (2007). Failure to acknowledge that the world will no longer tolerate one single superpower has led the United States to impose a warlike situation against China. This begins with Obama's "pivot" to Asia in 2015, and intensifies with Trump's "trade war."

Cold War on China Looms

Since 2015, not one U.S. Silicon Valley CEO has made a robust statement for comity between the United States and China. Apple's Tim Cook held a meeting with Trump in August 2019 merely to allow Apple to better compete with Samsung, which was not hit by the U.S. tariffs. There was no broad statement about Trump's "trade war," with which Cook seemed quite pleased.

Silicon Valley firms know that on certain technological developments -- such as 5G, robotics, GPS, and soon microchips -- Chinese firms have clearly produced next-generation technologies, and in many cases have leapfrogged over their U.S. counterparts. Silicon Valley companies are quite happy for the U.S. government to put the entire weight of the state against Chinese firms. This includes using the security apparatus to accuse Huawei of being involved in Chinese government espionage. It is a curiosity that none of the Silicon Valley firms worry about privacy per se, because -- according to the Edward Snowden revelations -- the National Security Agency uses the PRISM program to collect data freely from Silicon Valley internet firms; but the U.S. uses the privacy and espionage arguments to try to hurt Chinese tech firms and protect the intellectual property and market advantages of Silicon Valley. Since this is the real cause of the trade war, there is every likelihood -- and Biden has said so -- that a Biden administration would continue to prosecute the trade war.

In 2013, the Chinese government set up the One Belt, One Road (now Belt and Road Initiative, or BRI) to extend its commercial links across the world. The Obama administration responded in 2015 with the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), a platform to break China's commercial ties along the Pacific Rim. Trump jettisoned the TPP and went for a more direct trade war. To counter the trillions of dollars that China will mobilize for the BRI, the United States used the Millennium Challenge Corporation (set up in 2004) and América Crece (2019) to funnel billions of dollars to countries in Africa, Asia, and Latin America. All of this is a desperate attempt to undermine China and maintain U.S. primacy.

The United States is not yet prepared to acknowledge the changed world situation. This will take time. Short of that, it is important for people to speak up against an escalation of hostilities.

This article was produced by Globetrotter.

Vijay Prashad's most recent book is No Free Left: The Futures of Indian Communism (New Delhi: LeftWord Books, 2015).

[Nov 19, 2020] Why the Military Establishment Backed Biden

Nov 19, 2020 | www.globalresearch.ca

By Chloe Rafferty Global Research, November 18, 2020 Red Flag Australia 10 November 2020 Region: USA Theme: Intelligence In-depth Report: U.S. Elections

https://apis.google.com/u/0/se/0/_/+1/fastbutton?usegapi=1&size=medium&count=true&origin=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.globalresearch.ca&url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.globalresearch.ca%2Fwhy-military-establishment-backed-biden%2F5729822&gsrc=3p&jsh=m%3B%2F_%2Fscs%2Fapps-static%2F_%2Fjs%2Fk%3Doz.gapi.en.Q1xYtA4iqvc.O%2Fam%3DwQE%2Fd%3D1%2Fct%3Dzgms%2Frs%3DAGLTcCPKs8DxrNe3iASWYEotlIa2jibGLg%2Fm%3D__features__#_methods=onPlusOne%2C_ready%2C_close%2C_open%2C_resizeMe%2C_renderstart%2Concircled%2Cdrefresh%2Cerefresh&id=I0_1605760168054&_gfid=I0_1605760168054&parent=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.globalresearch.ca&pfname=&rpctoken=14519820 47 US

The US military establishment will breathe a sigh of relief at Joe Biden's victory in the presidential election. Nearly 800 former high-ranking military and security officials penned an open letter in support of the Democratic candidate during the campaign. A who's who of former generals, ambassadors, admirals and senior national security advisers -- from former Secretary of State Madeline Albright to four-star admiral and Bush-era Deputy Homeland Security Advisor Steve Abbot -- backed Biden as the best bet to revive US power. A month earlier, 70 national security officials who served in Republican administrations threw their weight behind Biden (the list soon grew to 130), arguing that, on foreign policy, Trump "has failed our country" .

Why was Biden the war criminals' candidate of choice? The foreign policy chaos and controversy of the Trump years were a symptom of a global superpower in relative decline, with no real strategy out of the quagmire.

The US empire is at a turning point. It is the world's undisputed superpower; its reach is global, both militarily and economically . The US has been the world's largest economy since 1871, and its military has close to 800 installations in 80 countries around the world. But today, it is facing a growing economic rival in China, and several lesser powers challenging its ability to call the shots in every corner of the globe, most notably Iran and Russia.

The War on Terror, launched by the administration of George W. Bush , resulted in the invasions of Afghanistan in 2001 and Iraq in 2003. It killed more than a million people and cost upwards of US$2.4 trillion, according to the Congressional Budget Office. For the people of the Middle East, it was a massacre. For US empire, it was a disaster. The destabilisation of Iraq led to the expansion of Iranian influence across the region, rather than the regime change in Tehran the Pentagon dreamed of. The intervention in Iraq was meant to secure US dominance. It instead exposed the weaknesses and limits of US power right at the moment when China's dramatic economic expansion was beginning.

Tensions between the US and China have been increasing for years. Since its accession to the World Trade Organization in 2001, China has built its economic power, its diplomatic power and its military power, while the US became bogged down in endless wars and suffered economic crisis and depression with the 2008 financial crisis.

Barack Obama's "pivot to Asia", with its plan to increase US naval forces in the Asia-Pacific, was a signal that the US ruling class wanted to contain and encircle China. Obama's then classified Air-Sea Battle doctrine was an effort to create an operational plan for a possible military confrontation. Leaked cables made public by WikiLeaks reveal that Australia was in lockstep with US imperial strategy. In conversation with Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in 2009, Prime Minister Kevin Rudd confirmed Australia's willingness to "deploy force if everything goes wrong". But Obama's strategy was too little too late for containment. China became more aggressive in pressing claims in the South China Sea while beginning to close the enormous gap in military capabilities with the United States, engaging in the most rapid peacetime arms build-up in history.

Under Trump, these tensions further increased. Trump's confrontational rhetoric and trade war were a sharp break from the decades-long US strategy of integrating China into the international liberal order. Since the Republican administration of Richard Nixon -- who in 1972 became the first US president to visit Beijing -- the US ruling class thought it could ensure global supremacy by incorporating China into the world system. For a while, it appeared to work. China became the world's sweatshop and a key site of investment for US companies such as Apple and General Motors. But the strategy could be mutually enriching for only so long. Today, China is leveraging its meteoric growth to challenge the United States' leadership in the Asia-Pacific.

Obama's signature containment strategy was the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP). The TPP would have been the largest free trade deal in history, lowering tariffs and other non-tariff barriers to trade between eleven Pacific countries and the US. Its goal was to lock out China and further integrate Pacific countries with the US economy. Obama's Defense Secretary Ashton Carter said that the TPP was "as important as another aircraft carrier".

But just a few years later, Donald Trump tore up the TPP. The move was at odds with the consensus among the US economic and military elite, but the new president had his own ideas about how to contain China. Trump railed against the US trade deficit, accused Beijing of currency manipulation and, as Obama did, of stealing technology from US companies. In the 2019 State of the Union address he said, "We are now making it clear to China that after years of targeting our industries and stealing our intellectual property, the theft of American jobs and wealth has come to an end".

By August this year, Trump had slapped tariffs on $550 billion of Chinese goods, with a targeted campaign against tech giant Huawei, which had been tipped to overtake Apple in global phone sales. While Republican and Democratic politicians have backed a hardline approach to China, Trump's erratic protectionist approach to trade has alienated large sections of the capitalist class otherwise happy with domestic tax cuts and deregulation. A Bloomberg Economics report, released before the pandemic gripped the country, estimated that the escalating tariffs on China would cost the US economy $316 billion by the end of this year.

More worryingly for the US establishment, Trump adopted a dismissive attitude towards US allies, particularly the European Union. Trump prided himself on his ability to cut deals with other nations that favoured the US. He signalled that the multilateral approach to trade was over when he tore up the TPP, and followed that by applying tariffs on German cars, Canadian steel and French luxury goods. For much of the US elite, these moves have simply created a void that Beijing is attempting to fill with its own free trade deals and the $1 trillion Belt and Road initiative, which aims to incorporate more than 138 countries into trade routes and production chains centred on China.

The International Monetary Fund, the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, the UN and other international institutions project US dominance by drawing allied nations behind US leadership. Trump's presidency delegitimised or sidelined those institutions as he focused on an "America first" posture. The military establishment believes that this has threatened, rather than strengthened, US power -- although there is now an acknowledgement that those institutions failed to keep China in check, something a Biden presidency will also grapple with.

The war criminals hope that Biden will restore political legitimacy to the office by rehabilitating the liberal ideology that manufactures consent for American imperialism, pitching US aggression as necessary to "make the world safe for democracy" and defending the "rules-based liberal world order". Above all, the US establishment hopes that Biden will restore relationships with US allies and construct a coalition of nations to confront China, after a disastrous four years that called into question US global leadership. As the National Security Leaders for Biden open letter bemoaned: "Our allies no longer trust or respect us, and our enemies no longer fear us".

Biden has a proven record as a hawkish proponent of US empire. For decades, he served on the Senate foreign relations committee. He was an early proponent of the expansion of NATO to project US influence into the former eastern bloc after the fall of the USSR. He backed US intervention in the Balkan war, supported the invasion of Afghanistan in 2001, voted for the war on Iraq in 2003 and, as vice president, backed the US intervention in Libya.

There is consensus within the US ruling class over the need to "get tough" with China. The military establishment expects Biden to turn the screws. On the campaign trail, he accused Trump of "getting played" by Chinese President Xi Jinping, whom he called a "thug". This is consistent with Democratic Party practice in the Congress, which is to criticise Trump for not being tough enough. Senate minority leader Chuck Schumer, for example, accused Trump of "selling out" by cutting a trade deal with China. Schumer also spearheaded legislation to implement bans on Huawei when Trump appeared to back down.

Since his first days in Congress, Biden has also made a name for himself as a staunch supporter of the apartheid state of Israel. According to Israeli publication Haaretz , Biden is said to have a "real friendship" with Israel's far-right president, Benjamin Netanyahu. He was vice president when the US signed a $38 billion military aid deal with Netanyahu, which the State Department called the "single largest pledge of bilateral military assistance in US history". So while Trump pushed pro-Israeli rhetoric far to the right, abandoning any pretence of support for Palestinian statehood, Biden put his money where his mouth is when it came to propping up Israeli apartheid in Palestine.

On Afghanistan, Biden may prove to be to the right of Trump. As vice president, he supported an enduring US military presence in the country. Trump, by contrast, shocked the US military when he announced on Twitter that he wants all troops out by Christmas. In contrast, Biden in an interview with Stars and Stripes , a military newspaper, said he would maintain a troop presence in Afghanistan and Iraq.

Anti-imperialists need to judge Biden by his blood-soaked record in Congress and by the company he keeps. The bulk of the US military establishment has backed Biden precisely because they think his multilateral approach will restore credibility to US interventions. It's for this reason that Forbes magazine senior contributor Loren Thompson predicted last month: "A Biden presidency would be more likely to use US military forces overseas than President Trump has been".

Global capitalism is facing a profound crisis that is reshaping international relations and putting pressure on the fault lines of existing conflicts. Open imperialist rivalry will be a feature of the coming period, along with wars over regional disputes. There is no length to which the US ruling class won't go to safeguard its position as global superpower. And Joe Biden is the commander-in-chief. He is now the most dangerous man in the world.

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The original source of this article is Red Flag Australia Copyright © Chloe Rafferty , Red Flag Australia , 2020

[Nov 19, 2020] Biden's beholden to big money defense industries Sanders' brother

Nov 19, 2020 | www.rt.com

While probably "less aggressively nasty" than Hillary Clinton, Joe Biden is still a "conventional politician," but it won't be easy for him to dismiss his party's progressive wing, Larry Sanders told RT's Going Underground.

Brother to US Senator Bernie Sanders and the Green Party Spokesperson on Health and Social Care (England & Wales), Larry Sanders told RT's Going Underground host Afshin Rattansi that while Biden was not his "choice" for president, he prefers him over the current incumbent, President Donald Trump.

... ... ...

As a fixture of the establishment, Biden will follow the interests of corporate money and the military-industrial complex rather than anybody else's, Sanders noted.

"Biden is a conventional politician, he is beholden to big money, he is beholden to defense industries,


joe_go 13 hours ago 19 Nov, 2020 07:03 AM

If no one in America went to vote the country would still look the way it looks today. The big money and military industry would run the country the way it runs it when people vote and think it matters.
Spirgily_Klump 20 hours ago 19 Nov, 2020 12:46 AM
Do you know after Biden was out of the VP office the Chinese communist party had donated $70 million to one of his foundations at the University of Pennsylvania from which Joe drew a salary of over $900,000 per year? With his benefiting from the hundreds of millions his family took in from foreign powers and persons how can he gain the security clearance necessary for the presidency? The president needs the highest clearance. Even an applicant to the CIA get polygraphed.
shadow1369 Spirgily_Klump 9 hours ago 19 Nov, 2020 11:00 AM
Just one of many skeletons jangling in Bidet's closet, they will be used by his controllers to keep him on track.
Iwanasay 19 hours ago 19 Nov, 2020 01:22 AM
It doesn't matter who is in power, America's destiny has been chosen by other behind the scene faces
RedDragon 15 hours ago 19 Nov, 2020 05:27 AM
All USA presidents are beholden to big money entities, inclusive incoming Biden presidency. Trump is beholden to the Jewish money powers etc..

[Nov 18, 2020] Turns out war-enablers and war-profiteers are kosher so long as they're "woke" warmongers!

Nov 18, 2020 | original.antiwar.com

Max Boot's Revenge: Biden's 'A-Team' in Their Own Words

by Maj. Danny Sjursen, USA (ret.) Posted on November 17, 2020

Beware savvy, sophisticate liberals bearing gifts of evasive and ethically empty prose. Having, for my sins, spent a few weeks reading just about everything on offer from what unrepentant neocon zealot – and born-again Washington Post columnist – Max Boot dubbed Joe Biden's foreign policy "A-Team," I can vouch for the new transition team's vapidity and verisimilitude. Put another way, Boot's favored Biden Posse – the Iran nuke channeling , P4 (Tony Blinken, Avril Haines, Jake Sullivan, and Nicholas Burns) +1 (Michèle Flournoy) – have a rare gift for typing tons but saying little.

Worse still, what they do let slip drips with subtext of status quo-hawkishness – Biden's shadow team of five ground hogs spotting their shadows and predicting four more years of warfare winter. Moreover, these aren't just any Washington lowland creatures – they're being groomed , respectively, for national security adviser, director of national intelligence, a senior diplomatic role, possible secretary of state, and probable secretary of defense.

Only you're not supposed to look under the lid of Biden's national security transition team, because, well uh, Trump was worse, and there's, like, lots of ladies in the lineup. No really, "serious" people are saying that . With straight faces. And clear consciences. With no consequences. What a world!

This column's immediate genesis, though, was Glenn Greenwald 's vicious and vital responsive -evisceration of MSNBC contributor – and self-described "thriver on chaos" – Mieke Eoyang's recent nonsense Newspeak tweet . Here's her attempt to silence through shaming – and signaling by buzzword:

https://platform.twitter.com/embed/index.html?creatorScreenName=Antiwarcom&dnt=false&embedId=twitter-widget-0&frame=false&hideCard=false&hideThread=false&id=1327300779183644672&lang=en&origin=https%3A%2F%2Foriginal.antiwar.com%2F%3Fp%3D2012341368&siteScreenName=Antiwarcom&theme=light&widgetsVersion=ed20a2b%3A1601588405575&width=550px

[Nov 18, 2020] A small but important correction in terminology: when they say "Joe Biden's Foreign Policy Team" they actually means "Citibank's foreign policy Team"

Notable quotes:
"... Citibank's foreign policy Team would be much more accurate wouldn't it ? ..."
Nov 18, 2020 | www.moonofalabama.org

dave , Nov 17 2020 20:08 utc | 33

"Joe Biden's Foreign Policy Team"

Citibank's foreign policy Team would be much more accurate wouldn't it ?

That's like saying Obomber or Bush had their own foreign and economic policy.

... ... ...

[Nov 18, 2020] China will be a problem for Biden, as he can't pursue rapprochement without being labeled as China stooge and bought politician

Nov 18, 2020 | www.moonofalabama.org

ptb , Nov 17 2020 22:04 utc | 60

If the Chinese decide to really mess with the Biden administration, I'd imagine they would do something like build a road or even a pipeline in Afghanistan, even though it is completely unnecessary, simply to force the US to stay longer. Doesn't seem like their style, though.

In regards to Russia, same as most of the last 100 years, really. If anything big happens at all, it would be Putin retiring. In that case, CNN will have wild fantasies about Boris Yeltsin 2.0, while in reality Russian oligarchs may have some kind of trial moment to figure out whether his successor can continue to enforce a balance or not, which is a big question. Team Biden brings nothing to the table in that situation other than talking sh#t and creating confusion. The EU on the other hand could, but it's looking less and less likely. Especially as they will likely be immersed in a post covid political crisis and renewed challenge from right wing parties.

Last but not least, look for Biden to be nominated for Nobel Peace Prize before lunch on his first day in.

[Nov 18, 2020] One thing permanent in Washington swamp is the continuity of the USA neocon foreign policy

Female chickenhawks are generally more reckless then their male counterparts.
Nov 18, 2020 | www.moonofalabama.org
Down South , Nov 17 2020 18:44 utc | 3

here will be much pressure from the liberal hawks to finish the war they had launched against Syria by again intensifying it. Trump had ended the CIA's Jihadi supply program. The Biden team may well reintroduce such a scheme.

Susan Rice has criticized Trump's Doha deal with the Taliban. Under a Biden administration U.S. troop levels in Afghanistan are therefore likely to again increase.

One possible change may come in the U.S. support for the Saudi war on Yemen. The Democrats dislike Mohammad bin Salman and may try to use the Yemen issue to push him out of his Crown Prince position.

Biden and his team have supported the coup attempt in Venezuela. They only criticized it for not being done right and will probably come up with their own bloody 'solution'.

After four years of Russiagate nonsense, which Susan Rice had helped to launch, it is impossible to again 'reset' the relations with Russia. Biden could immediately agree to renew the New START treaty which limits strategic nuclear weapons but it is more likely that he will want to add, like with Iran's nuclear deal, certain 'amendments' which will be hard to negotiate. Under Biden the Ukraine may be pushed into another war against its eastern citizens. Belarus will remain on the 'regime change' target list.

Asia is the place where Biden's policies may be less confrontational than Trump's:

China would heave a big sigh of relief if Biden picks Rice as his secretary of state. Beijing knows her well, as she had a hands-on role in remoulding the relationship from engagement to selective competition, which could well be the post-Trump China policies.

For the Indian audience, which is obsessive about Biden's China policy, I would recommend the following YouTube on Rice's oral history where she narrates her experience as NSA on how the US and China could effectively coordinate despite their strategic rivalry and how China actually helped America battle Ebola.

Interestingly, the recording was made in April this year amidst the "Wuhan virus" pandemic in the US and Trump's trade and tech war with China. Simply put, Rice highlighted a productive relationship with Beijing while probably sharing the more Sino-skeptic sentiment of many of America's foreign policy experts and lawmakers.

All together the Biden/Harris regime will be a continuation of the Obama regime. It's foreign policies will have awful consequences for a lot of people on this planet.

Domestically Biden/Harris will revive all the bad feelings that led to the election of Donald Trump. The demographics of the election show no sign of a permanent majority for Democrats.

It is therefore highly probable that Trump, or a more competent and thereby more dangerous populist republican, will again win in 2024 .

Obama-Biden 3.0 as Pepe Escobar put it with an added twist


The Rotten Alliance of Liberals and Neocons Will Likely Shape U.S. Foreign Policy for Years to Come



Jackrabbit , Nov 17 2020 18:51 utc | 4

Was/is Trump so different?

Mike Pompeo, John Bolton, Elliot Abrams, Nikki Haley, etc.

!!

psychohistorian , Nov 17 2020 18:55 utc | 5
Thanks for the posting b

I do not agree with the assumption that the new administration (either Biden or Trump) will start more wars, as you call them. I posit that Trump would have had his war if it were possible but we are in a MAD phase of a civilization war and Biden will be just as neutered as Trump.

We are not going back to Obama 3.0. That ship sank when Russia stymied Obama empire in Syria. We are in a brave new world that is unfolding before our eyes....the future is all around us but just not evenly distributed.

lysias , Nov 17 2020 18:58 utc | 6
The elite certainly acts as though Trump is that different.
Kadath , Nov 17 2020 19:06 utc | 7

The Atlantic council this morning ("The way forward for transatlantic sanctions") is already discussing new sanctions the Biden Administration will bring in against Russia over the failed revolution in Belarus and the Navalny fraud. I'm amazed at how self-congratulating these fools are, they truly are blind both to the problems the US is facing and how the US is creating new international crisis that will destroy the nation.

H.Schmatz , Nov 17 2020 19:14 utc | 8

I can not understand why you insist here that Trump ended jihadist´s support in Syria, when it was these past days that we knew by US envoy there, Jeffries, that the troops not only were not decreased, by augmented.

Anyway, I guess we can conclude that if not directly, jihadists support continues through Turkey, as we have witnessed in the past conflict in the Caucasus.

... ... ...

Down South , Nov 17 2020 19:15 utc | 10

An article in Foreign Policy from a Bush era neo-con tells you what to expect:

Russia under Putin poses an existential threat to the United States and other countries of the West, Russia's neighbors, and his own people. Biden seems to understand that, not least because he has been the target of Russian interference in the 2020 election, including a disinformation campaign tied to Russia that was designed to smear him and his son Hunter.

Earlier this year, Biden wrote, "To counter Russian aggression, we must keep [NATO's] military capabilities sharp while also expanding its capacity to take on nontraditional threats, such as weaponized corruption, disinformation, and cybertheft." He continued: "We must impose real costs on Russia for its violations of international norms and stand with Russian civil society, which has bravely stood up time and again against President Vladimir Putin's kleptocratic authoritarian system." In an interview with CBS News' 60 Minutes before the election, Biden said he considered Russia "the biggest threat to America right now in terms of breaking up our security and our alliances."

These instincts are sound, and Biden likely will appoint officials who think the same way he does when it comes to Putin's Russia.


The problem is Putin.
Jackrabbit , Nov 17 2020 19:21 utc | 14

The more articles and postings that I see that bemoan the Deep State restoration (horror!) and return of business-as-usual (horror!), the more I think that we are being set up for an eventual Trump win.

Recent history tells us that Republican Presidents do BIG WARS (invoking Republican's claim to patriotism and a strong military) and Democratic Presidents do small, covert wars.

Why else would Trump fight an EMPIRE-FIRST establishment that he largely agrees with (as demonstrated by his actions while President)?

... ... ...

Anne , Nov 17 2020 19:27 utc | 16

Mr Wabbit - as I've written before (here and elsewhere): there is NO really existing difference between the which colored face(s) hang out in the WH (or in Congress) because they all belong to the same political stratum and, essentially, hold exactly the same positions, worldviews, attitudes, perspectives. All (aside from a tiny handful on occasion) support the MICIMATT, are intrinsically part and parcel of it. All get to fatten their bank accounts, get to revolve twixt this post and that in the MIC/TT/MA. At base most if not all (Blue/Red, it matters not at all) work for/along with/are part of the corporate-capitalist-imperialist plutocratic ruling elite.

Thus the warmaking will NOT stop without serious and continuous effort on the part of a large part of this country's population - and that isn't likely to happen: lots of folks earn their nice livelihoods in the MICIMATT industry; and most - overwhelmingly most - of the US population do not give a fuck what this country does to any other around the world, so long as a) doesn't affect them; b) their pension plans benefit; c) they can go back to sleep. How many even know where Syria, Libya, Iran, Ukraine ARE????

And they do not care - except when there is the occasional blowback - which is viewed as (what else?) terrorism, not simply retaliation. The real terrorism being projected, inflicted by guess which nations?

Kevin Gosztole on Grayzone; Patrick Lawrence on Consortium News; Danny Sjursen on Anti-war - all pieces give one despair, sheer and utter despair at the so-called electoral "choices" we had and the reality of the continuation of the imperial war machine, run by the utterly, completely grotesque, barbaric usuals (whatever their bloody sex, skin hue).

jayc , Nov 17 2020 19:28 utc | 17

While lecturing the world over "international norms", the deliberate obliviousness over the astonishing rolling humanitarian disasters initiated by the USA is beyond disturbing.

https://consortiumnews.com/2020/11/16/a-convergence-of-calamities/

Yul , Nov 17 2020 19:29 utc | 18

Watch out for Eliot A Cohen and what Phil Geraldi coined as "Kaganate of Nulandia" ilks in that FP Team. In Obama's first year we had Dennis Ross at the WH and Jeffrey Feltman at Turtle Bay whilst the R2P women were at Foggy Bottom : we got the Arab Spring followed by the demise of Ghaddafi and the havoc in Syria.
Who will Susan Rice put in the Bureau of Near Eastern Affairs to give the middle finger to Abu Mazen?

Don Bacon , Nov 17 2020 19:32 utc | 21

While The Dem party is strongly anti-Russia, connected at it is to the Atlantic Council and NATO, the probable next SecDef Flourney is throwing down the gauntlet on China.
...from TaiwanNews:

Flourney assessed that China is starting to believe it can achieve a quick strike that would disable all U.S. defenses in the region, paving the way for an invasion of Taiwan. "China's theory of victory increasingly relies on 'system destruction warfare' -- crippling an adversary at the outset of conflict, by deploying sophisticated electronic warfare, counterspace, and cyber-capabilities," wrote Flourney.
To boost deterrence capabilities, Flourney asserts that the U.S. must modernize and strengthen its forces in the region to raise the cost of "Beijing's calculus." Such is the buildup that Flourney is advocating, that it would enable the U.S. military to "credibly threaten to sink all of China's military vessels, submarines, and merchant ships in the South China Sea within 72 hours" . . here

This is quite a change from the current administration, which has followed the Taiwan Relations Act in stressing that the break-away province is responsible for its own defense, with no mention of US support. In fact the US does not have a mutual defense treaty with this Chinese province. Normally these treaties only include countries of course, and while Taiwan claims to be a country of course it isn't.
Laguerre , Nov 17 2020 19:50 utc | 26

On the question of war, it's no secret that Biden is likely to prove more hawkish than Trump, though Biden himself is a diplomatic man. However the world has changed since the days of Obama. The Middle East has ground to a stalemate, and there are no objectives to achieve by putting in more troops or air-strikes. Trump just tried and failed to bomb Iran. The military advice to Biden won't be different.

With regard to the "pivot to Asia", I doubt that the Chinese are much afraid of a US attack.

vk , Nov 17 2020 19:51 utc | 27

...Abstracting the factor of a new party naturally being inclined to reinitialize all the wars abandoned or paralyzed by the previous party at a first glance...

1) Venezuela: I would bet Biden should have learned from Trump's mistake, but fact on the field is the Southern Caribbean nation is a too appetizing target for him to to revisit it and do a real invasion with Colombia through the land as an auxiliary;

2) South China Sea/Taiwan: Susan Rice's little story is touching, but the Western-backed Asian MSM (SCMP, Asia Times etc.) is already preparing the psychological/ideological field for a hot war between China and the USA there, which means they were already briefed by Biden's team it will happen;

3) Afghanistan: at the heart of Central Asia (Heartland) + CIA opium = a matchstick will rule over the Cocytus before the USA abandon its occupation of that country;

4) Yemen: the war pays for itself as the Saudis are recycling USDs into American weapons, so I think inertia will prevail. When the Saudis say it's over, it's over;

5) Syria: game's over for the Americans there. The Russians imposed a no-fly zone to NATO/USA. Most they can do is to prop up Turkey (which they don't like right now) to fund terrorists in Idlib to try to drain the Russian coffers a little bit more but the Kremlin can push the nuclear button anytime if it really comes to that point (if ever);

6) Belarus: it was more a German affair than an American affair. Doesn't apply;

7) Ukraine: unfinished business will probably lead to another ramping up over the Dnieper, but the Donbassians have the geographical advantage and will never lose their territory as long as they have full-fledged support from Russia;

8) Russia: the problem here is the USA is in a position it has to choose - Russia or the European Peninsula? Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer has already stated Germany's unconditional loyalty to the USA is directly linked to the continuation of NATO. If NATO's gone, then the European Peninsula may become a second Southeast Asia.

Circe , Nov 17 2020 19:56 utc | 29

If ... Tom Cotton is the Republican nominee, a Dem Presidential victory in 2024 will make Biden's 2020 landslide look like the small mound of sand sliding into the bottom half of an hourglass.

Welcome back Georgia, Arizona and hello Texas!

dave , Nov 17 2020 20:08 utc | 33

"Joe Biden's Foreign Policy Team"

Citibank's foreign policy Team would be much more accurate wouldn't it ?

That's like saying Obomber or Bush had their own foreign and economic policy.

The only reason DC puts on this shit show is to protect the owners from accountability.

No matter who the "president" is there will be more war, sanctions, and coup attempts because that's what the money/power cult needs to obtain more power and control.

These assholes successfully perpetrated a coup of the US government, why would they worry about which flunky gets (s)elected ??

*forgot to include fraud in my list, sorry.

karlof1 , Nov 17 2020 20:17 utc | 35

Patrick Lawrence poses the same basic question as b in this article , with his title giving its contents away:

"Hillary Clinton at the UN? Whether or not Biden appoints her, things are getting very brazen and very bitter, very fast."

Lawrence opines:

"Let us now send this conscienceless liar to the UN to make sure the world knows we're all for international cooperation so long as all others submit to our dictates and don't get in our way when we invade other countries, foment coups or otherwise breach international law.

"I confess to longstanding animosity toward the odious Clinton. In truth she is merely the apotheosis of what we've known for some time about the incoming regime's character.

"Biden's army of foreign-policy transition advisers -- 2,000 in number -- is chock-a-block with warmongers, Russophobes, Sinophobes, Iranophobes, exceptionalists, puppets of apartheid Israel, humanitarian interventionists, and others promising nothing but trouble. We've known this for some time."

Lawrence did some great digging to complement the work done by other investigators. The following is excellent:

"The Democratic 2020 platform published on the eve of Biden's nomination last summer, intended to bring Bernie Sanders' supporters on board, included these commitments on the foreign-policy side:
•"Bringing our forever wars to a responsible end."
•"Rationalizing the defense budget."
•Ending covert "regime change" operations in favor of "more effective and less costly diplomatic, intelligence, and law enforcement tools."
•"Right-sizing our counterterrorism footprint."
•Scaling back U.S. involvement in Afghanistan in favor of "a durable and inclusive political settlement" with a residual role for special operations forces.

"Didn't President Donald Trump attempt to achieve various of these objectives? Didn't hawks in his administration and at the Pentagon vigorously and illegally subvert these attempts? Didn't the mainstream press cheer on these subversions while lambasting Trump daily for jeopardizing "national security" as he tried (however inconsistently) to bring troops home, settle up in Afghanistan, negotiate with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, and other such things?...

"Those who expected the Biden regime to give Americans a thoughtful, informed, post-exceptionalist foreign policy -- and I am not among these people -- are in for too many disappointments to list over the next four years. Let us consider a few of the more consequential."

Lawrence goes on to detail why there'll be no peace in Eurasia and no reduction in the Imperial Budget. I agree 100% with his summation:

"One principle will guide the Biden regime's foreign policies. Biden is a man of empire and those around him empire's lieutenants. This will determine all of what is to come."

Realistically that means the Outlaw US Empire will continue to drown as it spins around and slowly descends down the toilet bowl. Nowhere in anyone's analysis of this issue is there any mention of the fact that great domestic strength and vitality are a prerequisite for any attempt at Imperial Dominance, and nowhere in Bidenland is there any policy proposal to rehabilitate that fact. Sure, all sorts of hawks will populate the Pentagon and continue at the State Dept, but they might as well be doves since the Empire's industrial base can no longer support an aggressive Imperial Policy. Then there's the Human Capital that's in just as dire a condition as the Industrial Plant. Biden in many respects faces the same set of problems Trump was confronted with and allowed to fester/worsen. Plus, half the nation is dead-set against him and his regime, perhaps even more so than with Trump since there'll be no constant BigLie Media smearing.

The gap between the Outlaw US Empire and those nations it's chosen to demonize as competitors and worse continues to grow daily. The RCEP is only one manifestation. A second is the continuance of BRICS, which just held a Summit. If Biden launches an attack against Iran, he'll suffer a massive defeat for the same reasons as Trump. Same with North Korea. Same as with the South China Sea. Same as with Taiwan. Same as with Syria. And I'd say the last bullet within the Color Revolution gun available for use in Eurasia was recently fired to no effect. Latin America is rebounding again. In almost every respect, the Outlaw US Empire is weaker now than in 2017 when Trump took over. IMO, Biden's #1, most important and difficult job will be domestic since his donors will insist they be allowed to continue to eat away at the vitals that are the fundamental basis of support for the Empire--Following in the footsteps of Rome.

DFC , Nov 17 2020 20:53 utc | 40

Thanks b

Russia will be the main target of the new US regime, expect to see the russian underbelly in flames in the Caucasus, in Central Asia and of course in Ukraine and Syria.

The russian regimen change project will be at full speed, economically, politically, domestic and external insurgencies, all in order to bleed to death the Bear that they see as a cultural, military, industrial and natural resources rival that has to be fully destroyed and reduced to smithereens, divided in corrupt satrapies much smaller and easy dominate "à la ukrainien" or georgian, to extract, on the cheap, all their natural resources with nice fees for the Biden family or many others american plutocrats. Win-win situation.

One of the pieces to "bleed the beast" project was the Pashinyan sororite hiper-corrupt regime, who sell large amounts of weapons to the jihadis in Syria to kill russians and syrians soldiers, this was the last straw for the russkies with them:

https://southfront.org/pinch-me-moment-of-armenian-media-reveals-corruption-and-chaos-in-defense-ministry/

The only option to Russia, of course is to pay the US with the same coin

Circe , Nov 17 2020 20:55 utc | 41

So the DoD just announced that Trump is drawing down troops in Afghanistan and Iraq to 2500 for each by January 15th 2020, and there are about 5,000 private military contractors in each which will probably increase to compensate. Easy call for Trump.

Nothing gained. Nothing lost.

William Gruff , Nov 17 2020 20:56 utc | 43

US State Department budget

2016: $53.4 billion
2020: $44.12 billion

Good job, Trump! Nice cut of that regime change budget!

Who wants to bet that Harris and the dead guy try to hike this budget for 2021 back up above its levels in its glory days of color revolutions?

NemesisCalling , Nov 17 2020 21:17 utc | 46
@36 BNW

Yes, I saw McConnel plead to be able to stay and "finish" Afghanistan. Such a tired show now. The same ol' tune, spoken a thousand times on that senate floor.

But to your point, not all Republicans are non-interventionists. There are many, many RINOs amongst them who actually loathed the idea of Trump as POTUS in 2015, so much so that it took the groundswell of support for DJT that these RINOs relented and hopped aboard the Trump-train.

Now that he has lost, they want to revert back to their prior and favored position as controlled opposition to the Dem establishment. It will at first be subtle, with feigned support for outgoing POTUS, but gradually, they will cease mentioning him at all.

It remains to be seen whether the constituents in these RINOs' districts will not see through the subterfuge.

As I have mentioned before, I think they will come for the RINOs if they disembark the Trump-train. They are sowing wind.

Kooshy , Nov 17 2020 21:19 utc | 47

As we move forward resistance to American hegemony becomes stronger, more broad and a more viable counterbalance to the western hegemony on world affairs. This is while US and her allies have and are becoming weaker and therefore more unbalanced. Political and economic unbalance as seen during the pandemic is much more difficult and costly for developed
nations as would be for the third world.
As has been seen in past few years this shifting power balance will naturally make the losing power, more reactionary and more violent to preserve and restore her power, both domestically and externally.

As this giant corpse start decaying her parasites start chowing more and demanding more to save themselves, which makes this dying giant even more unpredictable, and perhaps more reactionary and violent regardless who's the president and in power, Trump or Biden has not and will not make any change difference for the Deep state policies.
Fortunately this is, and has been, the trajectory we are on for some time now, and IMO this is unstoppable, no matter who and how much propaganda is leveled inside and outside of west.

Malchik Ralf , Nov 17 2020 21:30 utc | 50
All three, together with Joe Biden, promoted the 2003 war on Iraq

I seem to recall that Bush was President back then...Biden and his appointees might have gone along with it, as did many American politicians.

Framarz , Nov 17 2020 21:31 utc | 51
Biden has said that he will re-instate the nuclear agreement with Iran but with 'amendments'.

Wishful thinking by Biden and his faction, if he get into white house at all. The greatest obstacle for any US president to get back to JCPOA is the general disqualification of US governments to be part of any international agreement.
Obama signed, Trump teared in pieces, Biden signing again (are we in a Kindergarten?), who is going to guarantee that the next republican president (in 4 years?) doesn't tear it in pieces again or even the to-be president Kemala Harris (in 2 years?) doesn't trigger the snap back as a friendly pay back gesture to the Zionist Apartheid regime for getting the job as president?

Although Rouhani government has sent strong signals that they are ready for a new round of negotiation, with less then 9 months to the next elections in Iran, almost no chance that the next winner come from technocrat camp, theocracy not ready to support technocratic efforts for new negotiations and finally wide popular resistance to continue the JCPOA even in the current format. It would be more then a wounder to encounter JCPOA 2.0

jinn , Nov 17 2020 21:38 utc | 53

What occupies the fantasies of the populace does matter to the oligarchs who run the show. If it didn't matter to the elites they would not spend so much time and energy trying to shape those fantasies...
The elites are going to support the politicians that are most accomplished and adept at bolstering the fantasy of the two party system and American democrazy. There is no doubt that Donald Trump is the salesman of the year for the smoke the elites are blowing up your ass. There is no other politician that could get 150 million americans sucked into the fantasy.
And what that means is they will do whatever they can to make sure trump gets another four more years.

_K_C_ , Nov 17 2020 21:40 utc | 54

Can't say I disagree with much of this when taken at face value, but I'd appreciate some backing to this assertion, for which it's quite uncharacteristic of b not to provide right up front.....if true.

Biden and his team have supported the coup attempt in Venezuela. They only criticized it for not being done right and will probably come up with their own bloody 'solution'.

I should note, and most MoA readers will agree, that it's nearly impossible to find any Western media organization - including erstwhile progressive outlets - who don't agree with the alleged status quo that Maduro is a "dictator" and "has to go."

Even when Venezuelans in Venezuela were asked about who they'd rather see become president the questions and answers were couched in this implicit "truth".

So what WOULD a Biden administration do differently? All's I can find of substance is that they'd use sanctions in a more precise manner, not the blunt force instrument that Trump has applied - and - that they would grant temporary protected status to Venezuelans wishing to flee (I'd bet there's a good mix of the Mestizo and Moreno poor, as well as the trust fund descendants of the colonial elite) to the United States whereas Trump refused or dragged his feet to the point that it didn't matter.

I think, then, that the decisions made will be less to do with Biden being a bad man (which, like Trump, he is), but instead all grounded in the accepted "reality" that "Maduro must go" and there must be a "peaceful democratic transition" (back to right-wing colonialist descendants from whom (some of) their stolen land and oil leases were stolen back under Chavez and the Bolivarian Revolution. This falsehood has been cemented as truth and reality across both sides of the U.S. political spectrum as well as that of the UK, Canada and France: Maduro = Commie Dictator and Brutal Humanitarian Abuser. There is absolutely ZERO way that Joe Biden would go against it in any meaningful way. He'll just do it a little less roughly and mean spiritedly as Trump and Bush before him had done (no coups and fewer sanctions under Obama).

This is a good article on the intricacies of the politics of food (and resources - a good history lesson all the way around and recommended - written in June of 2018 and looking back not only on the Chavez years, but the colonial history that preceded him. I think it's required reading for anyone who wants to get into a debate or discussion (here or elsewhere) about Chavez and Maduro.

AriusArmenian , Nov 17 2020 22:19 utc | 65

Trump is war monger lite compared to Biden that is war monger/criminal heavy. Greater chaos is coming inside and outside the US while liberals go back to sleep comfortable that another Obama like admin is in charge.

My prediction: in the next four years it will be near impossible to paper over the objective collapse of the US Empire of Insanity.

Jackrabbit , Nov 17 2020 22:56 utc | 73

Miami Herald on an issue important to many of its readership:
Joe Biden said he 'confronted' Venezuela's Nicolas Maduro. Is that true?

Biden's campaign said he "was among the first Democratic foreign policy voices to recognize Juan Guaidó as Venezuela's legitimate leader and to call for Maduro to resign."


Even socialist Sanders, who refused to call Maduro a "dictator", is anti-Maduro:
Sanders called Maduro a "vicicious tyrant" and said there should be "international and regional cooperation for free elections in Venezuela so that the people of that country can make -- can create their own future."

!!
michaelj72 , Nov 17 2020 23:34 utc | 78

there's plenty of countries in the world where the US will continue and/or try to regime change legitimate governments.

some of these were already started by Mr. Hope and Change, and will continue or be ramped up by Mr. Sleepy/Rice/Flournoy - like Ukraine, a perfect pretext to irritate Russia with. And poor Venezuela, which both current and past administrations have attempted to strangle to death

Some of these came to fruition under Pompeo/Haspel/Trump like Armenia (2018); and some like Belarus have survived, so far.

some where successfully changed under Trump, like Brazil.

some were temporarily regime changed, like Bolivia (2019), but are now back in the hands of the real Socialists and indigenous peoples.

some were successfully carried out under Obama, like in Honduras and Paraguay.

The chinese finally learned and took action in Hong Kong which is now essentially out of the regime change column. Iran will never be regime changed either, nor Syria.

And some like Lebanon are still in play.

I expect economic sanctions/warfare to be increasingly used by this incoming democratic administration as much as the outgoing republican.

The way for all this nefarious and despicable activity by the US and the West to end is....??

Don Bacon , Nov 17 2020 23:37 utc | 79

Trump just didn't have the same amount of low hanging fruit that Obama did . . .like Ukraine and Syria
low hanging fruit: a thing or person that can be won, obtained, or persuaded with little effort.

Let's be clear that Obama's "fruit" turned out to be rotten apples (losses in Ukraine* & Syria**), plus Mr Hope & Change foolishly sent 70,000 more troops to Afghanistan, destroyed one of the leading countries in Africa (Libya) for no reason, threatened Iran every fortnight with his "all options on the table" BS then did an 'agreement' with Iran that was easily overturned,. .the list goes on.

*NATO wanted Russia's only warm-water port in Crimea, and didn't get it.
**Russia stepped in to prevent US-supported regime change

Venom , Nov 17 2020 23:43 utc | 80

All of the linear and conventional predictions about the next administration's foreign policy will be proven wrong, because they neglect the near-fatal deterioration of the US economy and its social fabric in the last 4 years. In short, any return to the pre-Trump status quo is simply impossible. That ship sailed forever.
What is pretty much guaranteed, however, is significant and irreversible ratcheting up of economic tension between America and the rest of the world. The approach may undergo some finessing, but substance will not only remain but acquire additional urgency. The US is in desperate need of reducing its current account deficit, and that can't be accomplished without more threats, more brinkmanship, and more unilateral impositions. You can say goodbye to any prospect of international harmony, it won't happen. Sure, Democrats may attempt softening of rhetoric at first, but it will be proven counterproductive and abandoned rather quickly.
The only reason the Deep State brought Biden back to political life, is because he is one of the few remaining old Cold Warriors capable of achieving normalization of relations with Russia. It's of overarching importance at this point, as without it nothing really works for America and all possible geopolitical equations simply fall apart right away. It's also pretty clear that because Biden's mental and physical condition is in rapid decline, such normalization will be proceeding at breakneck speed. Expect Biden-Putin summit in first 6 months of the inauguration, ostensibly to sign new Start Treaty or prolong the old one. After that, "the dialogue" will kick into overdrive.
All in all, modeling next 4 years of US foreign policy based on op-ed articles in American MSM is just silly. These are written not to enlighten but to obfuscate. Expect secret entreaties to Moscow literally within hours of January 20, 2021.

Don Bacon , Nov 17 2020 23:48 utc | 81

There may be some small cookies thrown Russia's way, but that country as a serious threat must remain. The 500,000 person US ground force, modernly equipped, depends upon it. There is no other justification, only a "dangerous" Russia.

Prof K , Nov 17 2020 23:49 utc | 82

Look at Zionist-imperialist bitch Susan Rice berating the UN General Assembly for its overwhelming vote in 2012 on according Palestine non-member observer status:

https://www.cnn.com/videos/world/2012/11/29/sot-us-un-amb-rice-on-palestine-resolution-obstacle-to-peace.untv

Here is the UN announcement on the 'overwhelming' vote:

https://www.un.org/press/en/2012/ga11317.doc.htm

Don Bacon , Nov 17 2020 23:55 utc | 83

Just as the US must have enemies, because there's so much money in it, it must also (for the same reason) continue to have Israel calling the signals in the Middle East.

_K_C_ , Nov 18 2020 0:04 utc | 85

By "low hanging fruit" (or poisoned apples), what I meant was from the PR angle. Situations in those places - by the CIA's making or not - were being reported in the West in such a manner so that they were more easily than usual sold as "humanitarian interventions" to "help democracy flourish" and the like. Whereas Bush had his 9/11 and fake WMD threats from Saddam, Obama had the "organic" "grassroots" uprisings in Ukraine, Syria, Libya, Tunisia and other places which would be used as excuses to go in and steal gold, wreck nations who were a threat to the Franco or American post-colonial control structures, and otherwise instill chaos, which is one major goal of EVERY U.S. intervention - especially in the ME.

But yeah, what was done to Libya, Syria and the Ukraine is unforgiveable. I'm just saying that TPTB when Trump was in office didn't have the easy, made-for-humanitarian intervention news stories to excuse the next round of destruction. That's one reason they had to try so hard with Iran - going as far as designating their military and its leaders as terrorists and all that shit so they could bomb Soleimani while he was on a diplomatic mission. Can't have an outbreak of peace, now, can we? That is, unless it's a carefully scripted PR version of "peace" such as what we saw recently with the gulf monarchies and Israel.

Haassaan , Nov 18 2020 0:58 utc | 90

redictions for the Biden Regime...let us see.

Gonna have to say target numero uno has got to be Syria. Finishing off Syria, and chasing the Russians home will be the lynchpin to the rest of Biden's Middle East Policy. Once Syria is collapsed into chaos and ethnic cleansing, Lebanon/Hezbollah become much easier to deal with. Iran becomes further isolated and it's ability to project power seriously reduced. The whole point of JCPOA IMO was a delaying tactic, keeping Iran on the back burner while Iranian Proxies and Regional Influence are mopped up.

I expect the Mighty Media Wurlitzer of Pro-War Propaganda will soon begin spinning up and focusing on the brutality inflicted on the moderate head-choppers by the Assad Regime...another chemical weapons attack anyone?

The Russian presence in Syria is actually quite precarious, despite their military gains they don't project power very efficiently beyond their borders. The Biden Regime will therefore turn up the heat, possibly with a No-Fly Zone over both Idlib and Southern Syria/Al Tanf in conjunction with a well armed proxy offensive backed by air-support. DNC Dems/Deep State/NeoCon believe Russia to be bluffing and will either back down or be rolled over in short order.

arby , Nov 18 2020 1:02 utc | 91

Strange IMO.
Most everyone here is talking like it will be business as usual on foreign policy.
I am not so sure. I think that Covid19 has pricked the phony bubble created after the 08/09 collapse. I know the stock market is right back and everything looks fine but I think there is deep rot beneath.
Couple that with a lot of draws in their latest endeavours and I doubt that the machine can keep operating with such confidence/arrogance.

_K_C_ , Nov 18 2020 1:12 utc | 95

Do you also remember how the 2000 presidential campaign played out? Gore was characterized by the MSM, straight up, as an "interventionist" while Bush - eager to distance his own foreign policy from the Balkan wars and Clinton/Gore tried to walk a fine line between isolationism (of which he was accused) and non-interventionism.

During the 2000 presidential campaign, George W. Bush announced that he would pursue a "distinctly American internationalism" in foreign policy (Bush i999a), largely in contrast to the liberal internationalism of the Clinton administration. He initially sought to have a foreign policy that placed greater emphasis on American national interests than on global interests.
(look up George W. Bush and "classical realism")

So what do Trump and Bush II have in common? How about Trump and Obama? I'll tell you: The preceding administration of the opposite political party had a history of military interventions that were quite unpopular with the public, which was looking for a change. And guess what Obama said when he first stepped into office. That's right - he'd pursue a retrenchment based foreign policy dedicated to fighting existing terror threats in places and places near where the previous administration had already placed American troops - AND to wrap up the already existing wars. From the Atlantic's retrospective:

It wasn't supposed to be this way. Although Obama never presented himself as a pacifist candidate, his 2007-2008 presidential campaign was predicated in part on the promise to end the war in Iraq and properly prosecute the war in Afghanistan. In March 2008, he declared of Iraq, "When I am commander in chief, I will set a new goal on day one: I will end this war." Later that year, he listed his first two priorities for making America safer as "ending the war in Iraq responsibly" and "finishing the fight against al-Qaeda and the Taliban." The president also promised a foreign policy that relied more on diplomacy and less on military might in his first inaugural address, telling his audience that "our power grows through its prudent use; our security emanates from the justness of our cause, the force of our example, the tempering qualities of humility and restraint." Well before the tumult of the Arab Spring and its aftermath, Obama famously offered to extend a hand to those willing to unclench their fist. (there are links embedded there)

Here's what Brookings has to say:

I do not mean to overstate. Obama's presidency will not go down as a hugely positive watershed period in American foreign policy. He ran for election in 2007 and 2008 promising to mend the West's breach with the Islamic world, repair the nation's image abroad, reset relations with Russia, move toward a world free of nuclear weapons, avoid "stupid wars" while winning the "right war," combat climate change, and do all of this with a post-partisan style of leadership that brought Americans themselves together in the process.[1] He ran for reelection in 2012 with the additional pledges of ending the nation's wars and completing the decimation of al Qaeda. Six years into his presidency, almost none of these lofty aspirations has been achieved.[2] There has not been, and likely will not be, any durable Obama doctrine of particular positive note. The recent progress toward a nuclear deal with Iran, while preferable to any alternative if it actually happens, is probably too limited in duration and overall effect to count as a historic breakthrough (even if Obama shares a second Nobel Prize as a result).

And before you start to think that Trump said much different, here's a blurb from your own article:

"We will stop racing to topple foreign regimes that we know nothing about, that we shouldn't be involved with," Trump said. "Instead, our focus must be on defeating terrorism and destroying ISIS, and we will."

Hence, there hasn't been a President for the last 50 years that has campaigned on, or entered office with a PUBLIC plan to engage in foreign regime change activities. But nearly every one of them, especially since Ronald Reagan, have had "excuses" crop up for "humanitarian interventions" and that includes Bush II and Obama. The so-called Arab Spring began in earnest in mid- to late 2010 and Syria and Libya were in mid to late 2011 during their peak, at which point the U.S. and France got involved under the auspices of "humanitarian intervention."

So more than 3 years into his first term, Obama still hadn't "started any new wars." Three years is an incredibly short period of time when looking at history, even the history of the United States. Trump's only been in office for about 3 years and 9 months. Nothing like the Arab Spring has happened so far while he's been there. That is indisputable. What is also indisputable is that Trump DID try to spark a war by assassinating General Soleimani. Whether there was any plan AT THE TIME to end up invading Iran (a total fool's errand as you know well), I doubt, but the goal of that assassination was to prevent an organic, non-U.S. brokered peace between Iran and Saudi Arabia, which at the very least was a threat to Trump's precious arms sales, but also very much in line with his Zionist friendly Israel policy. At worst, who knows, but you can't make an unchallenged assumption that Trump and his advisors had fully thought through all possible Iranian retaliation options and concluded that there was no way the assassination would cause Iran to do something so bad that a new war was justified regardless of the cost. Sorry, but you just can't.

Yeah, yeah, Trump hasn't started any "new wars" but his rhetoric and public facing stated foreign policy goals were virtually the same as Obama's. Trump just didn't get any 9/11s, Eastern European or Middle East uprisings that would have been sufficient for him or ANY previous president to attempt to justify "humanitarian interventions" abroad. As I've said for a while, if he had a second term, there would have been a new war - even if it was the "deep state" and CIA who created the astroturf casus belli.

Prof K , Nov 18 2020 1:34 utc | 98

...Trump has also unleashed a mass proto fascist movement, which is based amongst the lowest scum of the working class, various billionaire factions, and the white suburban middle class and small business owners.

These genies will not go back into their bottles. Neoliberal hegemony is shattered.

All of this is the result of the 1% sucking the blood of the working class for the past four decades. 2008 was the spark. Covid was the explosion.

I see this every damn day in the US, even in a wealthy liberal city. The social fabric has largely fallen apart. Living in the US is daily suffering, dashed hopes, sadness, and rage. It is awful.

Biden won't have any room for major wars abroad. He might try to rebuild liberal alliances but he won't have any capacity to overthrow Asad or Maduro or to reverse the objective trends of global capitalism. How can he reboot US primacy if China and Asia account for 90 percent of world economic growth?

Covid has revealed the US as a paper tiger with little institutional capacity to manage itself or the world. It is in fact a threat to the world.

Biden and his neoliberal coterie will act like arrogant pricks. They are arrogant pricks. But we can laugh at them. They have a limited shelf life.

Lex , Nov 18 2020 1:36 utc | 99

Well of course it will be awful. There has never been an administration in American history that hasn't been awful on foreign policy. We've always been an empire.

Biden will find a world different than the one he remembers from four years ago. The blustering incompetence of the Trump administration was the world's cue to move on. And the empire now has a lot of issues in the home territory that need immediate and drastic attention.

Few empires survive long after being forced to turn inward after a long period of expansion. We're beyond things that can papered better with a glorious little war.

Biden likely takes power with a collapsed health care sector and a real economy of misery for most. He'll have a federal government riddled wholly unqualified ideologues in a country that went ahead and delegitimized it's own elections for one man's vanity. Where half the country doesn't believe in the virus that crushed the health care system and wrecked the economy. It will all be terrible because the US has reached the historical point where terrible describes all the options.

[Nov 18, 2020] Biden Administration will no doubt suffer the same fate if it seeks to reject or challenge Israel's ability to manipulate and virtually control key aspects of U.S. foreign policy. by Philip Giraldi

Notable quotes:
"... There is some pushback in Washington to Israeli dominance, but not much. Recent senior Pentagon appointee Colonel Douglas Macgregor famously has pointed out that many American politicians get "very, very rich" through their support of Israel even though it means the United States being dragged into new wars. ..."
Nov 18, 2020 | www.unz.com

That Israel would blatantly and openly interfere in the deliberations of Congress raises some serious questions which the mainstream media predictably is not addressing. Jewish power in America is for real and it is something that some Jews are not shy about discussing among themselves. Jewish power is unique in terms of how it functions. If you're an American ( or British ) politician, you very quickly are made to appreciate that Israel owns you and nearly all of your colleagues. Indeed, the process begins in the U.S. even before your election when the little man from AIPAC shows up with the check list that he wants you to sign off on. If you behave per instructions your career path will be smooth, and you will benefit from your understanding that everything happening in Washington that is remotely connected to the interests of the state of Israel is to be determined by the Jewish state alone, not by the U.S. Congress or White House.

And, here is the tricky part, even while you are energetically kowtowing to Netanyahu, you must strenuously deny that there is Jewish power at work if anyone ever asks you about it. You behave in that fashion because you know that your pleasant life will be destroyed, painfully, if you fail to deny the existence of an Israel Lobby or the Jewish power that supports it.

It is a bold assertion, but there is plenty of evidence to support how that power is exerted and what the consequences are. Senators William Fulbright and Chuck Percy and Congressmen Paul Findlay, Pete McCloskey and Cynthia McKinney have all experienced the wrath of the Lobby and voted out of office. Currently Reverend Raphael Warnock, who is running against Georgia Loeffler for a senate seat in Georgia demonstrates exactly how candidates are convinced to stand on their heads by the Israel Lobby. Warnock was a strong supporter of Palestinian rights and a critic of Israeli brutality. He said as recently as 2018 that the Israelis were shooting civilians and condemned the military occupation and settlement construction on the Palestinian West Bank, which he compared to apartheid South Africa. Now that he is running for the Senate, he is saying that he is opposed to the Boycotts, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement due to what he calls the movement's "anti-Semitic overtones." He also supports continued military assistance for Israel and believes that Iran is in pursuit of a nuclear weapon, both of which are critical issues being promoted by the Zionist lobby.

There is some pushback in Washington to Israeli dominance, but not much. Recent senior Pentagon appointee Colonel Douglas Macgregor famously has pointed out that many American politicians get "very, very rich" through their support of Israel even though it means the United States being dragged into new wars. Just how Israel gains control of the U.S. political process is illustrated by the devastating insider tale of how the Obama Administration's feeble attempts to do the right thing in the Middle East were derailed by American Jews in Congress, the media, party donors and from inside the White House itself. The story is of particularly interest as the Biden Administration will no doubt suffer the same fate if it seeks to reject or challenge Israel's ability to manipulate and virtually control key aspects of U.S. foreign policy.

The account of Barack Obama's struggle with Israel and the Israeli Lobby comes from a recently published memoir written by a former foreign policy adviser Ben Rhodes. It is entitled The World As It Is , and it is extremely candid about how Jewish power was able to limit the foreign policy options of a popular sitting president. Rhodes recounts, for example, how Obama chief of staff Rahm Emanuel once nicknamed him "Hamas" after he dared to speak up for Palestinian human rights, angrily shouting at him "Hamas over here is going to make it impossible for my kid to have his fucking bar mitzvah in Israel."

Rhodes cites numerous instances where Obama was forced to back down when confronted by Israel and its supporters in the U.S. as well as within the Democratic Party. On several occasions, Netanyahu lecture the U.S. president as if he were an errant schoolboy. And Obama just had to take it. Rhodes sums up the situation as follows: "In Washington, where support for Israel is an imperative for members of Congress, there was a natural deference to the views of the Israeli government on issues related to Iran, and Netanyahu was unfailingly confrontational, casting himself as an Israeli Churchill . AIPAC and other organizations exist to make sure that the views of the Israeli government are effectively disseminated and opposing views discredited in Washington, and this dynamic was a permanent part of the landscape of the Obama presidency."

And, returning to the persistent denial of Jewish power even existing when it is running full speed and relentlessly, Rhodes notes the essential dishonesty of the Israel Lobby as it operates in Washington: "Even to acknowledge the fact that AIPAC was spending tens of millions to defeat the Iran deal [JCPOA] was anti-Semitic. To observe that the same people who supported the war in Iraq also opposed the Iran deal was similarly off limits. It was an offensive way for people to avoid accountability for their own positions."

Many Americans long to live in a country that is at peace with the world and respectful of the sovereignty of foreign nations. Alas, as long as Israeli interests driven by overwhelming Jewish power in the United States continue to corrupt our institutions that just will not be possible. It is time for all Americans, including Jews, to accept that Israel is a foreign country that must make its own decisions and thereby suffer the consequences. The United States does not exist to bail Israel out or to provide cover for its bad behavior. The so-called "special relationship" must end and the U.S. must deal with the Israelis as they would with any other country based on America's own self-interests. Those interests definitely do not include funding the Israeli war machine, assassinating foreign leaders, or attacking a non-threatening Iran while continuing an illegal occupation of Syria.

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. Website is https://councilforthenationalinterest.org, address is P.O. Box 2157, Purcellville VA 20134 and its email is inform@cnionline.org .

[Nov 18, 2020] When any Washington Swamp creature talks about "threats to US national security" in reality they are talking about threats to the USA global hegemony

Highly recommended!
Threat inflation is like Apple pie among Washington swamp national security parasites
Notable quotes:
"... The US security state, with its huge military forces and techno-industrial base, and no diplomatic need nor capability, REQUIRES (fake) "security threats" in order to exist. ..."
"... Those appointed "threats" are currently, probably not changing soon, in some order of "threat-size" . . . ..."
Nov 18, 2020 | www.moonofalabama.org

Don Bacon , Nov 17 2020 22:23 utc | 66

Applying any logic to the "threats" against the US "national security" AKA world hegemony becomes much simpler with recognizing two simple facts:

1. The US security state, with its huge military forces and techno-industrial base, and no diplomatic need nor capability, REQUIRES (fake) "security threats" in order to exist.

2. Those appointed "threats" are currently, probably not changing soon, in some order of "threat-size" . . .

China, Russia, North Korea, Iran, Afghanistan, Syria, Venezuela, & African "terrorists" -- did I miss anyone?

[Nov 18, 2020] A short summary of Trump achivements: Good -- a cut of State department regime change budget; Bad -- extra 149 billion to MIC via Pentagon budget

Highly recommended!
Nov 18, 2020 | www.moonofalabama.org

William Gruff , Nov 17 2020 20:56 utc | 43

US State Department budget

2016: $53.4 billion
2020: $44.12 billion

Good job, Trump! Nice cut of that regime change budget!

Who wants to bet that Harris and the dead guy try to hike this budget for 2021 back up above its levels in its glory days of color revolutions?

Geronimo Black , Nov 17 2020 21:24 utc | 49

2016 Dept of Defense budget $585.3 billion
2020 Dept of Defense budget $665.0 billion +
2020 OCO (imperialist war operations) 69.0 billion

Is this added $149 billion in defense spending a "peace president" dividend I wonder?

[Nov 17, 2020] 'Back at the head of the table'- A look at Biden's foreign policy agenda

Nov 17, 2020 | www.france24.com

US president-elect Joe Biden's approach to diplomacy is diametrically opposed to that of the outgoing Donald Trump, known as he was to levy undiplomatic salvos at foreign leaders via social media. But one shouldn't expect a wholesale revamp in substance when the veteran Democrat takes office in January. FRANCE 24 takes a closer look at Biden's foreign policy agenda.

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The former US vice president brings a wealth of foreign policy experience, expertise and, not insignificantly, genuine interest in global affairs to the White House. The Democrat served as chair of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee , readily making trips to Iraq and Afghanistan to gather the facts on the ground, prior to spending eight years as President Barack Obama 's right-hand man from 2009 to early 2017.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel on Monday reflected fondly on her regular meetings with VP Biden under Obama. "He knows Germany and Europe well. I remember good encounters and conversations with him," Merkel said as she underlined Biden's "decades of experience in foreign policy" and "very warmly" congratulated him on his election win.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel, US VP Joe Biden and Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, laugh during a State Luncheon in Merkel's honour at the State Department in Washington on June 7, 2011.
German Chancellor Angela Merkel, US VP Joe Biden and Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, laugh during a State Luncheon in Merkel's honour at the State Department in Washington on June 7, 2011. © Manuel Balce Ceneta, AP Photo

The transatlantic conversation is indeed likely to mellow amid a promised early flurry of multilateral moves on Biden's part that dovetail with key European priorities and reverse the sorts of Trump manoeuvres that boggled European capitals.

Biden has said his foreign agenda would "place the United States back at the head of the table, in a position to work with its allies and partners to mobilise collective action on global threats". The operative word there may be "table" -- Biden recognises there should be one. After four years of "America First", with the erratic Trump toppling proverbial roundtables with an iconoclastic flourish, Biden will be conspicuous about putting the pieces back together.

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Repairing, bolstering alliances

"For 70 years, the United States, under Democratic and Republican presidents, played a leading role in writing the rules, forging the agreements, and animating the institutions that guide relations among nations and advance collective security and prosperity -- until Trump," Biden wrote in a Foreign Affairs piece last spring that reads like a foreign policy manifesto . "If we continue his abdication of that responsibility, then one of two things will happen: either someone else will take the United States' place, but not in a way that advances our interests and values, or no one will, and chaos will ensue. Either way, that's not good for America."

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Biden says he will rejoin the Paris Climate Agreement "on day one" and, "in his first 100 days in office", he will convene a global summit on climate to press the world's top carbon-emitters to join the US in making national pledges more ambitious than the ones they made in the French capital back in 2015.

On the campaign trail, the president-elect also pledged to rejoin the World Health Organization on his first day in office -- after Trump eschewed and quit the Geneva-based institution in the midst of the Covid-19 global public health crisis. "Americans are safer when America is engaged in strengthening global health," Biden reasons.

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During his first year in office, the president-elect has also pledged to host "a global Summit for Democracy to renew the spirit and shared purpose of the nations of the Free World". The gathering's stated aim is to obtain commitments toward fighting corruption, countering authoritarianism, notably through election security, and advancing human rights globally.

Biden has also pledged to rejoin the United Nations Human Rights Council.

As a presidential candidate, Biden stumped for renewing America's support NATO , calling his country's commitment to the 70-year-old political and military alliance "sacred, not transactional", in contrast to his predecessor's vision of the body as a protection club with dues.

"NATO is at the very heart of the United States' national security, and it is the bulwark of the liberal democratic ideal -- an alliance of values, which makes it far more durable, reliable, and powerful than partnerships built by coercion or cash," the lifelong transatlanticist wrote. Cue the sigh of relief in Baltic capitals.

Countering 'Russian aggression'

Naturally, part of Biden's argument for bolstering NATO is the message it will send Moscow . "To counter Russian aggression, we must keep the alliance's military capabilities sharp while also expanding its capacity to take on nontraditional threats, such as weaponised corruption, disinformation, and cyber-theft," Biden explained in Foreign Affairs.

He was vice president in 2014 when Russia annexed Crimea from Ukraine, sinking ties between Moscow and Washington to a post-Cold War low.

Observers note that Washington has not been complacent with Moscow in the intervening years, imposing sanctions on Russia during Trump's term in office even as the man behind the desk in the Oval Office seemed keen to look the other way. But under Biden, the mixed message of friendliness to Vladimir Putin conveyed by Trump -- who declined to address such affronts as the bounties Moscow allegedly put on the heads of US troops in Afghanistan -- will likely be a thing of the past.

"We must impose real costs on Russia for its violations of international norms and stand with Russian civil society, which has bravely stood up time and again against President Vladimir Putin's kleptocratic authoritarian system," Biden has pledged.

Despite his wariness of Moscow, Biden has promised to pursue an extension of the New START Treaty, which his campaign called "an anchor of strategic stability between the United States and Russia" and use that nuclear arms reduction agreement as a foundation for future arms control arrangements.

Coalescing allies to confront China

Biden sees China , meanwhile, as the most pertinent threat to US interests long-term, a stance that enjoys rare relative bipartisan agreement in Washington, meaning the shift on relations with Beijing will primarily be one of tone and method.

Biden has slammed China for stealing US firms' technology and intellectual property and for giving its state-owned firms an unfair advantage with subsidies.

Instead of addressing US concerns unilaterally as Trump has, Biden has proposed building a coalition of allies to confront China where the nations disagree (unfair commercial practices, human rights abuses) and to engage in cooperation where it is needed (climate issues, global public health, nonproliferation, not least vis-à-vis North Korea).

"On its own, the United States represents about a quarter of global GDP. When we join together with fellow democracies, our strength more than doubles. China can't afford to ignore more than half the global economy," wrote Biden in Foreign Affairs. "That gives us substantial leverage to shape the rules of the road on everything from the environment to labour, trade, technology, and transparency, so they continue to reflect democratic interests and values," he reasoned.

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The Delaware Democrat has blasted Trump's propensity for designating imports from the European Union and Canada, America's "closest allies", as national security threats, damaging long-entrenched relationships with "reckless tariffs".

"By cutting us off from the economic clout of our partners, Trump has kneecapped our country's capacity to take on the real economic threat," he wrote, pointing to China.

No more 'forever wars' in the Middle East

Biden has pledged to "re-enter" the Iran nuclear deal, "negotiated by the Obama-Biden administration alongside our allies and other world powers" -- namely France, Germany, the UK, the EU, China and Russia. He credits the accord with having blocked Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon and blames Trump's decision to cast it aside for prompting Iran to rekindle its nuclear ambitions and adopt a more provocative stance. Biden has pledged to rejoin the agreement "if Tehran returns to compliance" and use "hard-nosed diplomacy and support from our allies to strengthen and extend it, while more effectively pushing back against Iran's other destabilising activities".

Meanwhile, the former vice-president has also said he would "end our support for the Saudi-led war in Yemen".

Then-Democratic presidential hopeful, Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill., right, huddles with then-Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman Sen. Joe Biden, D-Del., left, on Capitol Hill in Washington during the committee's hearing on Iraq on January 31, 2007.
Then-Democratic presidential hopeful, Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill., right, huddles with then-Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman Sen. Joe Biden, D-Del., left, on Capitol Hill in Washington during the committee's hearing on Iraq on January 31, 2007. © Susan Walsh, AP Photo/File

Although he has said Trump's unilateral approach to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict has made the two-state solution for Israel that Biden backs more difficult, he has said he would keep the embassy Trump moved to Jerusalem in 2018 where it is. Biden has welcomed the normalising of relations the Trump administration helped negotiate between Israel and Gulf states in recent months.

The Democrat has pledged to sustain "an ironclad commitment to Israel's security". He has also cautioned the country over its treatment of the Palestinian territories, saying earlier this year , "Israel needs to stop the threats of annexation and stop settlement activity because it will choke off any hope of peace."

In terms of US military commitments in the region, Biden has advocated bringing home the vast majority of American troops in the Middle East and Afghanistan, in favour of narrowing the focus to Al-Qaeda and Islamic State group. He wants to end the "forever wars" the US has waged in the region.

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"We must maintain our focus on counter-terrorism, around the world and at home, but staying entrenched in unwinnable conflicts drains our capacity to lead on other issues that require our attention, and it prevents us from rebuilding the other instruments of American power," he wrote in Foreign Affairs.

No hard-border Brexit

It would be a misnomer to count Brexit as among Biden's hot-button policy issues. Indeed, while Trump ally Boris Johnson and his Conservative leadership in London once looked forward to negotiating an "ambitious" post-Brexit trade deal with the US, neither Biden's campaign website's outline of his foreign policy priorities nor the former vice president's quasi-manifesto in Foreign Affairs makes any mention of the United Kingdom per se or its divorce proceedings from the EU. What is clear is that Biden is not poised to cater to the so-called "Special Relationship" at any cost.

https://www.youtube.com/embed/BCr6XReU9vQ?feature=oembed

"We can't allow the Good Friday Agreement that brought peace to Northern Ireland to become a casualty of Brexit," the president-elect, a noted Irish-American, tweeted in September . "Any trade deal between the US and UK must be contingent upon respect for the Agreement and preventing the return of a hard border. Period."

Not quite Twitter diplomacy as Trump might conduct it, but the president-elect's sentiment won't have escaped Downing Street's attention as it turns the page on Europe.

[Nov 17, 2020] -Imperialism In Pumps-- Greenwald Johnstone Go Off As Media Gushes Over Presumed Biden Pick For SecDef -

Nov 17, 2020 | www.zerohedge.com

"Imperialism In Pumps": Greenwald & Johnstone Go Off As Media Gushes Over Presumed Biden Pick For SecDef by Tyler Durden Mon, 11/16/2020 - 18:30 Twitter Facebook Reddit Email Print

Independent commentator Caitlin Johnstone is raining on the parade of Liberals and Progressives who are hailing "barriers being broken" merely because Joe Biden is expected to pick a woman for the top Pentagon post in a historic first, blasting the spectacle as "Imperialism in Pumps" given presumed top choice Michele Flournoy hails from deep within the heart of the hawkish military-industrial complex .

"President-elect Joe Biden is expected to take a historic step and select a woman to head the Pentagon for the first time, shattering one of the few remaining barriers to women in the department and the presidential Cabinet," the Associated Press reported gushingly this weekend.

Michele Flournoy, via The Boston Globe

Apparently the "politically moderate" Flournoy is being viewed favorably by "political insiders" and career Pentagon officials.

But as a reminder here's what "moderate" means in establishment NatSec-speak :

Seen as a steady hand who favors strong military cooperation abroad , Flournoy, 59, has served multiple times in the Pentagon, starting in the 1990s and most recently as the undersecretary of defense for policy from 2009 to 2012. She serves on the board of Booz Allen Hamilton , a defense contractor...

Johnstone is unscathing in her attack on the media and Liberal cheerleading :

This word "moderate" which the AP news agency keeps bleating is of course complete nonsense. Standing in the middle ground between two corporatist warmongering parties does not make you a moderate, it makes you a corporatist warmonger. Flournoy is no more "moderate" than the "moderate rebels" in Syria which mass media outlets like AP praised for years until it became undeniable that they were largely Al Qaeda affiliates ; the only reason such a position can be portrayed as mainstream and moderate is because vast fortunes have been poured into making it that way.

She highlights the nauseating spectacle of MSNBC and others attempting to frame it as a great achievement for feminism:

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"White progressives training their fire on women and women of color who are under consideration to lead the nat sec departments makes me deeply uncomfortable about their allyship for those communities," tweeted MSNBC contributor Mieke Eoyang. "Especially when the nat sec community is dominated by white men."

It's only going to get dumber from here, folks.

Let's clear this up before the girl power parade starts: the first woman to head the US war machine will not be a groundbreaking pioneer of feminist achievement. She will be a mass murderer who wears Spanx. Her appointment will not be an advancement for women, it will be imperialism in pumps.

Glenn Greenwald also pointed out the obvious in terms of what's really going on here, deriding "the neoliberal scam of exploiting identity politics" .

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Greenwald came under attack for so much as daring to question Flournoy's potential appointment on the mere basis that one supposedly can't possibly question the choice when "barriers are being broken" (and nevermind that a woman, Gina Haspel, currently runs the most powerful spy agency in the world).

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Greenwald wrote of this tactic: "It belongs as a Hall of Fame exhibit showing why Democratic Party neoliberals and militarists are indescribably deceitful and repulsive."

[Nov 17, 2020] If Biden's Serious About Bringing Back Diplomacy, He Should Make These Appointments - FPIF

Nov 17, 2020 | fpif.org

During his election campaign, Biden has relied on foreign policy advisors from past administrations, particularly the Obama administration, and seems to be considering some of them for top cabinet posts. For the most part, they are members of the "Washington blob" who represent a dangerous continuity with past policies rooted in militarism and other abuses of power.

These include interventions in Libya and Syria, support for the Saudi war in Yemen, drone warfare, indefinite detention without trial at Guantanamo, prosecutions of whistleblowers and whitewashing torture. Some of these people have also cashed in on their government contacts to make hefty salaries in consulting firms and other private sector ventures that feed off government contracts.

As former Deputy Secretary of State and Deputy National Security Advisor to Obama, Tony Blinken played a leading role in all of Obama's more aggressive policies. Then he co-founded WestExec Advisors to profit from negotiating contracts between corporations and the Pentagon, including one for Google to develop artificial intelligence technology for drone targeting, which was only stopped by a rebellion among outraged Google employees.

Since the Clinton administration, Michele Flournoy has been a principal architect of the U.S.'s illegal, imperialist doctrine of global war and military occupation. As Obama's Undersecretary of Defense for Policy, she helped to engineer his escalation of the war in Afghanistan and interventions in Libya and Syria. Between jobs at the Pentagon, she has worked the infamous revolving door to consult for firms seeking Pentagon contracts, to co-found a military-industrial think tank called the Center for a New American Security (CNAS), and now to join Tony Blinken at WestExec Advisors.

Nicholas Burns was U.S. Ambassador to NATO during the U.S. invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq. Since 2008, he has worked for former Defense Secretary William Cohen's lobbying firm The Cohen Group, which is a major global lobbyist for the U.S. arms industry. Burns is a hawk on Russia and China and has condemned NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden as a "traitor."

As a legal adviser to Obama and the State Department and then as Deputy CIA Director and Deputy National Security Advisor, Avril Haines provided legal cover and worked closely with Obama and CIA Director John Brennan on Obama's tenfold expansion of drone killings.

Samantha Power served under Obama as UN Ambassador and Human Rights Director at the National Security Council. She supported U.S. interventions in Libya and Syria, as well as the Saudi-led war on Yemen . And despite her human rights portfolio, she never spoke out against Israeli attacks on Gaza that happened under her tenure or Obama's dramatic use of drones that left hundreds of civilians dead.

Former Hillary Clinton aide Jake Sullivan played a leading role in unleashing U.S. covert and proxy wars in Libya and Syria .

As UN Ambassador in Obama's first term, Susan Rice obtained UN cover for his disastrous intervention in Libya. As National Security Advisor in Obama's second term, Rice also defended Israel's savage bombardment of Gaza in 2014, bragged about the U.S.'s "crippling sanctions" on Iran and North Korea, and supported an aggressive stance toward Russia and China.

A foreign policy team led by such individuals will only perpetuate the endless wars, Pentagon overreach and CIA-misled chaos that we -- and the world -- have endured for the past two decades of the War on Terror.

Making diplomacy "the premier tool of our global engagement."

Biden will take office amid some of the greatest challenges the human race has ever faced -- from extreme inequality, debt and poverty caused by neoliberalism , to intractable wars and the existential danger of nuclear war, the climate crisis, mass extinction, and the Covid-19 pandemic.

These problems won't be solved by the same people, and the same mindsets, that got us into these predicaments. When it comes to foreign policy, there is a desperate need for personnel and policies rooted in an understanding that the greatest dangers we face are problems that affect the whole world, and that they can only be solved by genuine international collaboration, not by conflict or coercion.

During the campaign, Joe Biden's website declared, "As president, Biden will elevate diplomacy as the premier tool of our global engagement. He will rebuild a modern, agile U.S. Department of State -- investing in and re-empowering the finest diplomatic corps in the world and leveraging the full talent and richness of America's diversity."

This implies that Biden's foreign policy must be managed primarily by the State Department, not the Pentagon. The Cold War and American post-Cold War triumphalism led to a reversal of these roles, with the Pentagon and CIA taking the lead and the State Department trailing behind them (with only 5 percent of their budget), trying to clean up the mess and restore a veneer of order to countries destroyed by American bombs or destabilized by U.S. sanctions , coups and death squads .

In the Trump era, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo reduced the State Department to little more than a sales team for the military-industrial complex to ink lucrative arms deals with India, Taiwan , Saudi Arabia, the UAE and countries around the world.

What we need is a foreign policy led by a State Department that resolves differences with our neighbors through diplomacy and negotiations, as international law in fact requires , and a Department of Defense that defends the United States and deters international aggression against us, instead of threatening and committing aggression against our neighbors around the world.

As the saying goes, "personnel is policy," so whomever Biden picks for top foreign policy posts will be key in shaping its direction. While our personal preferences would be to put top foreign policy positions in the hands of people who have spent their lives actively pursuing peace and opposing U.S. military aggression, that's just not in the cards with this middle-of-the-road Biden administration.

But there are appointments Biden could make to give his foreign policy the emphasis on diplomacy and negotiation that he says he wants. These are American diplomats who have successfully negotiated important international agreements, warned U.S. leaders of the dangers of aggressive militarism, and developed valuable expertise in critical areas like arms control.

William Burns was Deputy Secretary of State under Obama, the No. 2 position at the State Department, and he is now the director of the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace. As Under Secretary for Near Eastern Affairs in 2002, Burns gave Secretary of State Colin Powell a prescient and detailed but unheeded warning that the invasion of Iraq could "unravel" and create a "perfect storm" for American interests. Burns also served as U.S. Ambassador to Jordan and then Russia.

Wendy Sherman was Obama's Undersecretary of State for Political Affairs, the No. 4 position at the State Department, and was briefly Acting Deputy Secretary of State after Burns retired. Sherman was the lead negotiator for both the1994 Framework Agreement with North Korea and the negotiations with Iran that led to the Iran nuclear agreement in 2015. This is surely the kind of experience Biden needs in senior positions if he is serious about reinvigorating American diplomacy.

Tom Countryman is currently the Chair of the Arms Control Association . In the Obama administration, Countryman served as Undersecretary of State for International Security Affairs, Assistant Secretary of State for International Security and Nonproliferation, and Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary for Political-Military Affairs. He also served at U.S. embassies in Belgrade, Cairo, Rome, and Athens, and as foreign policy advisor to the Commandant of the U.S. Marine Corps. Countryman's expertise could be critical in reducing or even removing the danger of nuclear war. It would also please the progressive wing of the Democratic Party, since Tom supported Senator Bernie Sanders for president.

In addition to these professional diplomats, there are also members of Congress who have expertise in foreign policy and could play important roles in a Biden foreign policy team. One is Representative Ro Khanna , who has been a champion of ending U.S. support for the war in Yemen, resolving the conflict with North Korea, and reclaiming Congress's constitutional authority over the use of military force.

Another is Representative Karen Bass , who is the chair of the Congressional Black Caucus and also of the Foreign Affairs Subcommittee on Africa, Global Health, Human Rights, and International Organizations .

If the Republicans hold their majority in the Senate, it will be harder to get appointments confirmed than if the Democrats win the two Georgia seats that are headed for run-offs (or than if they had run more progressive campaigns in Iowa, Maine, or North Carolina and won at least one of those seats).

But this will be a long two years if we let Joe Biden take cover behind Mitch McConnell on critical appointments, policies, and legislation. Biden's initial cabinet appointments will be an early test of whether Biden will be the consummate insider or whether he is willing to fight for real solutions to our country's most serious problems.

Conclusion

U.S. cabinet positions are positions of power that can drastically affect the lives of millions of Americans and billions of our neighbors overseas.

If Biden is surrounded by people who, against all the evidence of past decades, still believe in the illegal threat and use of military force as key foundations of American foreign policy, then the international cooperation the whole world so desperately needs will be undermined by four more years of war, hostility, and international tensions -- and our most serious problems will remain unresolved.

That's why we must vigorously advocate for a team that would put an end to the normalization of war and make diplomatic engagement in the pursuit of international peace and cooperation our number one foreign policy priority.

Whomever President-elect Biden chooses to be part of his foreign policy team, he -- and they -- will be pushed by people beyond the White House fence who are calling for demilitarization, including cuts in military spending, and for reinvestment in our country's peaceful economic development.

It will be our job to hold President Biden and his team accountable whenever they fail to turn the page on war and militarism, and to keep pushing them to build friendly relations with all our neighbors on this small planet that we share.

Medea Benjamin is the cofounder of CODEPINK for Peace, and the author of several books, including Kingdom of the Unjust: Behind the US-Saudi Connection and Inside Iran: the Real History and Politics of the Islamic Republic of Iran .

Nicolas J. S. Davies is an independent journalist, a researcher with CODEPINK, and the author of Blood On Our Hands: the American Invasion and Destruction of Iraq .

[Nov 16, 2020] Regretfully, US liberals now out-hawk conservatives in eagerness for aggression war -- RT Op-ed

Nov 16, 2020 | www.rt.com
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Daniel Kovalik teaches International Human Rights at the University of Pittsburgh School of Law, and is author of the recently-released No More War: How the West Violates International Law by Using "Humanitarian" Intervention to Advance Economic and Strategic Interests. You might have noticed something curious following Biden's apparent election win – liberal politicians and media are sounding the alarm that Trump may use his remaining months in office to draw down our troops from Afghanistan.

For example, the New York Times ran a piece on November 12 claiming that " both in Kabul and Washington, officials with knowledge of security briefings said there was fear that President Trump might try to accelerate an all-out troop withdrawal in his final days in office " before the more "responsible" Biden can take over and try to stop or at least slow this. It is clear now that it is the liberal establishment, and the Democratic Party, which is more wedded to war than their counterparts across the aisle, and that should be disturbing to people hoping for progressive change with the incoming Administration.

First of all, we must start with this discussion with the undisputed fact that our leaders do not know, and have not known for some time, what the US' goals and strategy in Afghanistan even are. One would be forgiven for not knowing, or for forgetting this fact because the incontrovertible evidence of it – the so-called " Afghanistan Papers " – received scant and only momentary attention when they were exposed last year by the Washington Post.

ALSO ON RT.COM George Galloway: Kiss of death – The winner of the most coveted Henry Kissinger endorsement is... Joe Biden

As these documents, consisting of interviews with hundreds of insiders responsible for prosecuting the war show, the American public was intentionally lied to about the alleged " progress " of this war, even as our leaders were unsure what " progress " meant.

As the Washington Post noted, the US government never even decided who it was really fighting there: " Was al-Qaeda the enemy, or the Taliban? Was Pakistan a friend or an adversary? What about Islamic State and the bewildering array of foreign jihadists, let alone the warlords on the CIA's payroll? According to the documents, the US government never settled on an answer ." Almost to a person, everyone involved in this morass agreed that the billions of dollars spent, and thousands of lives lost, have been in vain. It has all been a colossal waste.

Now, however, we are being told to panic that Trump may end this disastrous conflict. For example, the quite liberal and almost blatantly pro-Biden news outlet, National Public Radio (NPR) ran segments all last week about female soccer teams in Afghanistan. The message of these segments was clear – these soccer teams are (allegedly) proof of women's advances in Afghanistan as a result of the US' intervention since 2001, and these advances are in jeopardy if Trump ends this intervention.

Such manipulative stories of course obscure the real fact that the US has been undermining women's rights in Afghanistan since it began intervening there in 1979, and Afghanistan still ranks at the very bottom of all countries for women's rights. But there is no doubt that such stories will warm the hearts of many Biden supporters to continue war there.

ALSO ON RT.COM The US military is NOT a feminist organization: It can't protect women's rights abroad as it can't protect its own female soldiers

Meanwhile, it is not only Afghanistan which is the focus of the liberal enthusiasm for war. Thus, as the Grayzone has reported , Dana Stroul, the Democratic co-chair of the Congressionally-appointed Syria Study Group, recently outlined the plans for even deeper US intervention in Syria – an intervention which Trump has at least paid lip service to ending.

Specifically, Stroul emphasized that " one-third of Syrian territory was owned via the US military, with its local partner the Syrian Democratic Forces, " that this territory happened to be the richest in Syria in terms of oil and agriculture, and that the US would intensify its intervention in and against Syria to keep its control of this territory and its resources. Of course, taking over other nations' resources is a violation of international law, including the Geneva Conventions prohibition against "plunder," but that seems to be of no concern.

The liberal media is also elated by the prospect of a Biden White House being more aggressive in its foreign policy towards both Russia and China.

As CNBC explains , " Now there is likely to be a change in the air when it comes to U.S.-Russia relations. At the very least, analysts told CNBC before the result that they expected a Biden win to increase tensions between Washington and Moscow, and to raise the probability of new sanctions on Russia...Experts from risk consultancy Teneo Intelligence said they expected more cooperation between Biden and Europe on global issues such as 'countering China, Russia' ."

While one might think that increased tensions with two major nuclear powers would not be a welcome development, years of the false Russiagate narrative have groomed liberals for such tensions.

ALSO ON RT.COM Trump's Pentagon shuffle suggests either no more wars or just one with Iran

Incredibly, Trump has been portrayed as being soft on Russia, even as he backed out of a major anti-proliferation treaty (The Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty) which had been signed with the Kremlin back in 1987, and even as he sent the largest contingent of US troops (20,000) in a quarter of a century to train with European soldiers on the Russian border. I must note here that the converse – Russia's sending tens of thousands of troops to the border with the US – is simply inconceivable and would indeed be seen in Washington as an occasion for war. I, for one, am quite alarmed to think of what a Biden policy of "getting tougher" with Russia would look like, and what kind of catastrophe it could bring about.

Regretfully, I now live in a country in which liberals outflanking conservatives in terms of their tolerance and even eagerness for aggression and war, especially when that aggression and war is being led by officials who, as I'm sure we will see in the new Biden Administration, happen to be women or people of color. For the first time recently, I have seen the concept of "intersectional imperialism" being used to describe this situation, and I believe this to be a very real phenomenon; to be but another means of making war that much easier to swallow for broad swaths of the American public.

The irony, of course, is that the bombs dropped by the US in war, no matter who happens to be in charge of the US government at the time, disproportionately fall upon women and children of a darker skin hue, and they maim and kill just as much as those dropped by old white male Republicans. Sadly, few seem to understand or care about this.

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The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of RT.


benalls 31 minutes ago 16 Nov, 2020 10:27 AM

It's not the "left" or "right", republicans or democrats, but a new American movement,,,, CBM,,, wich usually means 'silent but deadly' but in this case it stands for "CEO's Bonus Matters" . The movement congressional members from Raytheon, Lockheed Martin, Boeing vowed to support. Its time for us to grab our shields, helmets, and frozen water bottles and travel to a new neighborhood to loot and burn. Israel has given Harris and JOJO their instructions.

razzims 49 minutes ago
16 Nov, 2020 10:10 AM
same ol empire of chaos and their eternal war. no matter which party wins election
HypoxiaMasks 1 hour ago 16 Nov, 2020 09:42 AM
Other than the Bush and lil Bush, every war from the beginning of the 20th century was started with a Democrat president. Tell me again how the Republicans are the party of war
MarkG1964 5 minutes ago 16 Nov, 2020 10:54 AM
The democrats and republicans are two wings on the same bird.

[Nov 16, 2020] Video- Joe Biden Was Firmly Behind The 2003 Iraq War. Extensive War Crimes - Global ResearchGlobal Research - Centre for Research on Globalization

Nov 16, 2020 | www.globalresearch.ca

Worth the Price? Joe Biden and the Launch of the Iraq War is a documentary short reviewing the role of then-Senator Joe Biden (D-DE) in leading the United States into the most devastating foreign policy blunder of the last twenty years.

Produced and directed by Mark Weisbrot and narrated by Danny Glover , the film features archival footage, as well as policy experts who provide insight and testimony with regard to Joe Biden's role as the Chair of the United States Senate Committee on Foreign Relations in 2002.

Featured experts:

https://www.youtube.com/embed/vhcuei8_UJM

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[Nov 16, 2020] Joe Biden's Victory Is Still a Loss for Humanity- -Good News for Corporations, Cops, War Profiteers and Banks- - Global ResearchGlobal Research - Centre for Research on Globalization

Nov 16, 2020 | www.globalresearch.ca

The possibility of eased sanctions with Iran, while extremely important, is not guaranteed and will be offset by Biden's own commitment to imperialist plunder in the region. One cannot forget that Biden helped the Obama administration increase U.S. wars from two to seven. In eight years, Biden assisted in the coup of Honduras , the overthrow of Libya , and the ongoing proxy war in Syria . Biden's commitment to the WHO should not negate his firm opposition to any single-payer model of healthcare and the large sums of money he receives from the very healthcare industry which has ensured the U.S. is without a public health system all together.

"Biden helped the Obama administration increase U.S. wars from two to seven."

Biden and the Democratic Party are joint partners with the GOP in the facilitation of the ongoing Race to the Bottom for the working class. Wall Street donated heavily to Biden with full knowledge that his administration will continue to support the right of corporations to drive down wages, increase productivity (exploitation), and concentrate capital in fewer and fewer hands. Boeing's CEO stated clearly clear that his business prospects would be served regardless of who won the election . Prison stocks rose after Biden announced Kamala Harris as his vice president . On November 4th, Reuters announced that the lords of capital were quite pleased that no major policy changes were likely under the new political regime elected to Congress and the Oval Office.

Biden will inevitably rule as a rightwing neoconservative in all areas of policy. His big tent of Republicans and national security state apparatchiks is at least as large as Hillary Clinton's in 2016. Over 100 former GOP war hawks of the national security state endorsed Biden in the closing weeks of the election. Larry Summers, a chief architect of the 2007-2008 economic crisis, advised his campaign . Susan Rice and Michele Flournoy are likely to join Biden's foreign policy team -- a key indication that trillions will continue to be spent on murderous wars abroad.

The question remains whether Biden can effectively govern like prior Democratic Party administrations. American exceptionalism is the Democratic Party's ideological base, but this ideology is entangled in the general crisis of legitimacy afflicting the U.S. state. Biden's ability to forward a project of "decency" that restores the "soul of the nation" is hampered by his attitude that "nothing will fundamentally change" for the rich. Biden also lacks charisma and talent. While millions were ready to vote for anyone and anything not named Donald Trump, four years of austerity and war under a president with obvious signs of cognitive decline is guaranteed to sharpen the contradictions of the rule of the rich and open the potential for further unrest on both the left and the right of the political spectrum.

"Biden's big tent of Republicans and national security state apparatchiks is at least as large as Hillary Clinton's in 2016."

To maintain social peace, Biden will use the Oval Office to consolidate its corporate forces to suffocate left wing forces inside and outside of the Democratic Party. The graveyard of social movements will expand to occupy the largest plot of political territory as possible. A "moderate" revolution will be declared for the forces of progress in the ruling class. Perhaps the best that can be summoned from a Biden administration is the advancement of consciousness that the Democratic Party is just as opposed to social democracy and the interests of the working classes as Republicans. Plenty of opportunities exist to challenge the intransigence of the Democrats but just as many obstacles will be thrown in the way of any true exercise of people's power.

The 2020 election is yet another reminder that social movements must become the focus of politics, not the electoral process. This is where an internationalist vision of politics is especially important. Social movements in Bolivia returned their socialist party to power after a year living under a U.S.-backed coup. Massive grassroots mobilizations in Cuba, Vietnam, and China contained the COVID-19 pandemic in a matter of months. Ethiopia and Eritrea have agreed to forge peace rather than wage war. The winds of progress have been blowing toward the Global South for more than a century. The most progressive changes that have ever occurred in the U.S. have been a combined product of the mass organization of the U.S.' so-called internal colonies such as Black America and the external pressures placed on the U.S. empire by movements for self-determination abroad.

The 2020 election has come and gone. What we know is that Biden is a repudiation of revolutionary change. Humanity will suffer many losses even if more of the oppressed and working masses become aware of Biden and the DNC's hostile class interests. Trump was rejected by a corporate-owned electoral process just as Clinton was rejected in 2016. Politics in the U.S. remain confined to the narrow ideological possibilities offered by neoliberalism and imperial decay. Oppressed people must create and embrace a politics that take aim at the forces of reaction currently pushing humanity to the brink of total destruction. The only way this can happen is if Biden and the rest of the Democratic Party become the primary target of the people's fight for a new world.

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Danny Haiphong is co-coordinator of the Black Alliance for Peace Supporter Network and organizer with No Cold War. He and Roberto Sirvent are co-authors of the book entitled American Exceptionalism and American Innocence: A People's History of Fake News–From the Revolutionary War to the War on Terror (Skyhorse Publishing). His articles are re-published widely as well as on Patreon at patreon.com/dannyhaiphong. He is also the co-host with BAR Editor Margaret Kimberley of the Youtube show BAR Presents: The Left Lens and can be reached on Twitter @spiritofho, and email at wakeupriseup1990@gmail.com.

[Nov 16, 2020] Elephants in the Room- Why Do America and Britain Commit War Crimes- Neoliberalism and Predatory Capitalism - Global ResearchGlobal Research - Centre for Research on Globalization

Nov 16, 2020 | www.globalresearch.ca

Elephants in the Room: Why Do America and Britain Commit War Crimes? Neoliberalism and Predatory Capitalism Part II By Rod Driver Global Research, November 15, 2020 Region: Europe , USA Theme: History , US NATO War Agenda

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"I spent 33 years being a high class muscle man for Big Business, for Wall Street and the bankers. I helped make Mexico safe for American oil interests in 1914. I helped make Haiti and Cuba a decent place for the National City Bank boys to collect revenues in.

I helped in the raping of half a dozen Central American republics for the benefit of Wall Street. The record of racketeering is long. I helped purify Nicaragua for the international banking house of Brown Brothers in 1909-1912. I brought light to the Dominican Republic for American Sugar interests in 1916. In China I helped to see that Standard Oil went its way unmolested. In short, I was a racketeer for capitalism."(1) (Major-General Smedley D. Butler, 1931 , US Marine Corps)

Read Part I:

Elephants in the Room: US Military and CIA Interventions since World War II

By Rod Driver , October 29, 2020

***

Once people understand the extent of the crimes of the US and British governments, the next question they ask themselves is 'Why?'

The quote above shows clearly that US war and economic exploitation are two sides of the same coin. Military aggression by rich nations often supports the economic interests of a small number of the world's wealthiest and most powerful people and corporations. Decisions about wars and decisions about how the world's trading system is structured are each made by a small number of powerful people.

This includes not only politicians, but also senior executives in industry, particularly banking, oil, mining, food and weapons. Most of these people live in the world's advanced nations, particularly the US. I shall use the phrase 'Western elites' to refer to these people. Some of these elites have gone to extraordinary lengths to try to make sure that their position of power and wealth in the world is maintained. In 1948 the US had only 6% of the world's population but 50% of the world's wealth. A US official stated at the time that their aim was "to maintain this position of disparity"(2). As will become clear throughout these posts, the views of US planners have changed little in the last 70 years.

Control of Resources and Trade

What is important in the minds of Western elites can be summed up by the phrase 'control of resources and trade'. This is a shorthand way of summarising a number of connected ideas. Resources include things like land, oil, minerals, crops and human labor. Rich countries want poor countries to allow global corporations to extract and process these resources, and to take them overseas, without too much interference from national governments, whatever the downsides for local people. Rich countries also want poor countries to have economic systems that will allow global corporations to dominate trade, buying and selling in order to make substantial profits, without being too restricted by local laws. Again, this applies even where there are downsides for local people.

Western elites therefore want leaders in other countries who will implement the 'right' economic system. This means a particularly exploitative version of capitalism, sometimes called neoliberalism or predatory capitalism, including widespread privatisation, weaker regulations for big companies, and decreases in government expenditure, known as austerity. (These economic policies will be discussed in more detail in later posts). The global financial and trade system is manipulated deliberately and systematically to create this outcome. This might sound like a conspiracy, but it does not really work that way. Provided everyone just plays their part (corporate executives and bankers pursue profit, politicians make laws that favor corporations, and trade negotiators from rich countries try to create trading agreements that benefit their corporations), the rich get richer and the poor stay poor.

Blocking Independent Development

If leaders in other countries want to determine their own economic systems, this is known as independent development. This does not mean that a country cuts itself off from the rest of the world, or does not engage in trade. It simply means that the leaders of a country refuse to implement neoliberal economic policies that allow corporations from rich countries to dominate their economies, to plunder their resources, or to exploit their people. Western elites have tried very hard to block independent development, because it limits their control. Leaders who object to being exploited by rich nations can be overthrown and replaced, often causing devastating consequences for their people, particularly the poor. The new leaders are often referred to as US clients. They usually cooperate with the US because this helps them gain power and wealth in their own country. Getting these rulers into power can be quite tricky. Techniques range from manipulating elections right up to full-scale military invasion.

US Dominance

The US in particular has two other key goals. It wants to maintain a global financial system based around the US dollar, and it would like to ensure that no other country becomes strong enough, either militarily or economically, to be a rival. In 2018 the US announced that its main focus was no longer on the 'war on terror', but would focus on "inter-state strategic competition"(3), meaning Russia and China.

Whenever the reasons for a war are discussed in the mainstream, there is a tendency to look for a single explanatory factor. In practice there tend to be a cluster of factors, often connected to each other, that all push in the same direction. As well as the reasons discussed above, there are plenty of big corporations that frequently benefit from war. This includes the weapons industry, financial companies, private military contractors (mercenaries), oil and minerals companies, and more recently many companies that win contracts to participate in the reconstruction process in war zones.(4)

The Importance of Oil

Oil in the Middle East has been described as

"a stupendous source of strategic power and one of the great material prizes in world history."(5)

Without oil, most advanced economies would grind to a halt. Of all the resources that American leaders want to control, by far the most important is oil. Their control of oil is not so much about wanting it all for themselves. It is more about being able to deny it to others.(6) Anything that a country cannot produce for itself, but needs badly, can be used as a means of control. A shortage of oil for a country such as China would make life very difficult for them. This is the main reason that the major wars of the 21 st century have been in oil rich regions. Specific motives relating to recent wars will be discussed in later posts.

How Do We Know The Real Reasons For British and US Wars

Until 2006 it was difficult to know what politicians and government decision-makers were really saying to each other about their reasons for wars and other activities. The government kept many files secret in order to hide their crimes. In the UK we had to wait for 30 years (this has now been reduced to 20 years) until some of these files became declassified. During that period, we had to rely on the word of politicians and journalists for information. The declassified files show that politicians often lie, particularly about their reasons for war, and that mainstream media are not sufficiently questioning.(7) Time and again, the mainstream media would show clips of Prime Ministers and Presidents saying 'We want peace', while those same individuals were responsible for major wars. The files also show that Politicians use concepts like 'national security' or 'official secrets' to cover up their crimes.

In 2006 a man named Julian Assange set up a new organisation called Wikileaks. This enabled whistleblowers (people who witness criminal or unethical activity, usually by their employers) to make information available to the public without their identity becoming known. Millions of documents were given to Wikileaks exposing widespread war crimes by the British and US governments, and widespread criminal activity by other governments and big companies. All of these documents are available online and can be examined by anyone.(8)

Key Points

US and British wars are about control of trade and resources in other countries.

Of all the resources that the US wants to control, oil is the most important.

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Rod Driver is a part-time academic who is particularly interested in de-bunking modern-day US and British propaganda. This is the second in a series entitled Elephants In The Room, which attempts to provide a beginners guide to understanding what's really going on in relation to war, terrorism, economics and poverty, without the nonsense in the mainstream media.

This article was first posted at medium.com/elephantsintheroom

[Nov 16, 2020] Progressive House Democrats urge Biden against Defense chief with contractor ties - TheHill

Nov 16, 2020 | thehill.com

© Aaron Schwartz

A pair of progressive House Democrats is urging President-elect Joe Biden not to nominate a Pentagon chief who has previously worked for a defense contractor.

"Respectfully, and in full agreement with your past statements, we write to request that the next secretary of Defense have no prior employment history with a defense contractor," Reps. Mark Pocan (D-Wis.) and Barbara Lee (D-Calif.) wrote in a letter to Biden released Thursday.

Pocan is the co-chairman of the Congressional Progressive Caucus and Lee is the caucus's chairwoman emeritus.

[Nov 16, 2020] From the Revolving Doors of the Pentagon to the Biden Administration - Antiwar.com Blog

Nov 16, 2020 | www.antiwar.com

From the Revolving Doors of the Pentagon to the Biden Administration

Code Pink Posted on November 16, 2020

From CodePink :

Dear Friend,

Do you want someone on the board of a company connected to the brutal Saudi war in Yemen to serve as the next Secretary of Defense?

President-elect Joe Biden is expected to select notorious war-hawk Michele Flournoy , who supported the wars in Iraq, Libya and Syria when she worked at the Pentagon and is on the board of military IT contractor Booz Allen Hamilton, as his candidate for Secretary of Defense. Contact your Senators right now and tell them: no weapons industry war-hawks in the President's cabinet!

Flournoy's career has been marked by the unethical spinning of revolving doors between the Pentagon and consulting firms that help businesses procure Pentagon contracts. In 2018, she joined the board of Booz Allen Hamilton, an IT company that played an important role in Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman's 2015 drive to consolidate power. Booz Allen employs dozens of retired American military personnel to train the Saudi Navy and provide logistics for the Saudi Army. They deny helping the Saudi war in Yemen, and if you believe that

This is urgent: President-elect Biden could officially select his choice for Secretary of Defense as early as Thanksgiving and we can't let his foreign policy be dictated by a former Pentagon official who sits on the board of a company connected to MbS and the brutal war in Yemen. Since all cabinet members must be approved by the Senate, we are starting our petition to the Senate NOW to oppose the appointment of Flournoy or any candidate in bed with the military contractors. Contact your Senators now!

It's true – we probably won't like anyone appointed to Secretary of Defense. But we must firmly oppose the fundamental conflict of interest that occurs when the official selected to oversee the Defense Department is beholden to the same companies that stand to gain enormous profit under their tenure. We oppose Michele Flournoy and any candidate for Secretary of Defense with ties to revolving doors of the Pentagon because when the military contractors calls the shots, we get:

With this new administration and new progressive voices in Congress – Cori Bush and Jamaal Bowman, for example – we have a real chance to prioritize peace over war. We already have efforts in the works to finally end U.S. support for the war on Yemen, slash the Pentagon budget, de-escalate the growing conflict with China, and advocate for a New Good Neighbor Policy in Latin America. But these campaigns for peace, especially the work to end the war in Yemen, could be in serious trouble if Michele Flournoy, or anyone who shuffles between the revolving doors of the Pentagon and military contractors, is appointed to lead the Department of Defense. Tell Congress: Americans don't want someone who has supported the war in Yemen running the US military! Don't support Michele Flournoy or any candidate with ties to military companies as Secretary of Defense!

We knew we'd have to hit the ground running with a Biden presidency, and it looks like our first urgent call to action is here. Contact your Senators now!

Towards a weapons-free world,

Angela, Ann, Ariel, Carley, Caty, Cody, Danaka, Emily, Farida, Jodie, Kelsey, Koohan, Leila, Leonardo, Maxine, Mary, Medea, Michelle, Nancy, Paki, Teri, and Yousef

[Nov 15, 2020] 'Forever war' returns- Biden's Pentagon team puts the military-industrial complex back in command - reports -- RT USA News

Nov 15, 2020 | www.rt.com

'Forever war' returns: Biden's Pentagon team puts the military-industrial complex back in command - reports 14 Nov, 2020 17:28 / Updated 11 hours ago Get short URL 'Forever war' returns: Biden's Pentagon team puts the military-industrial complex back in command - reports Joe Biden and MIchele Flournoy © Reuters / Jonathan Ernst and Yuri Gripas 705 1 Follow RT on RT Despite campaign-trail overtures to progressives, a Joe Biden presidency seems to spell a return to normalcy in the most time-honored American way: by placing the military-industrial complex in charge of the country's defense.

Joe Biden's campaign message focused almost entirely on Donald Trump, and on Biden's supposed ability to "unify" a polarized electorate and "restore the soul of America." Since he claimed victory last week, Biden's prospective administration has begun to take shape, and the reality behind the rhetoric has started to emerge.

On matters of defense, restoring America's "soul" apparently means placing weapons manufacturers back in charge of the Pentagon.

ALSO ON RT.COM The return of the Obama 'adults' in a Joe Biden administration is likely to spell ruin for America

Biden announced his Department of Defense landing team on Tuesday. Of these 23 policy experts, one third have taken funding from arms manufacturers, according to a report published this week by Antiwar.com .

A knot of hawks

Leading the team is Kathleen Hicks, an undersecretary of defense in the Obama administration, and an employee of the Cen­ter for Strate­gic and Inter­na­tion­al Stud­ies (CSIS), a think tank funded by a host of NATO governments, oil firms, and weapons makers Northrop Grumman, Boeing, Lockheed Martin, Raytheon, and General Atomics. The latter firm produces the Predator drones used by the Obama administration to kill hundreds of civilians in at least four Middle-Eastern countries.

Hicks was a vocal opponent of President Donald Trump's plan to withdraw a number of US troops from Germany, claiming in August that such a move "benefits our adversaries."

Two other members of Biden's Pentagon team, Andrew Hunter and Melissa Dalton, work for CSIS and served under Obama in the Defense Department.

ALSO ON RT.COM Biden has defeated Trump. Meet the new boss same as the old boss

Also on the team are Susanna Blume and Ely Ratner, who work for the Center for a New American Security (CNAS). Another hawkish think-tank, CNAS is funded by Google, Facebook, Raytheon, Northrop Grumman and Lockheed Martin. Three more team members – Stacie Pettyjohn, Christine Wormuth and Terri Tanielian – were most recently employed by the RAND corporation, which draws funding from the US military, NATO, several Gulf states, and hundreds of state and corporate sources.

Michele Flournoy is widely tipped to lead the Pentagon under Biden. Flournoy would be the first woman in history to head the Defense Department, but her appointment would only be revolutionary on the surface. Flournoy is the co-founder of CNAS, and served in the Pentagon under Obama and Bill Clinton. As under secretary of defense for policy under Obama, Flournoy helped craft the 2010 troop surge in Afghanistan, a deployment of 100,000 US troops that led to a doubling in American deaths and made little measurable progress toward ending the war.

'Forever war' returns

President Trump, who campaigned on stopping the US' "forever wars" in the Middle East and remains the first US president in 40 years not to start a new conflict, has nevertheless also staffed the Pentagon with hawkish officials. Recently ousted Defense Secretary Mark Esper was a top lobbyist for Raytheon, while his predecessor, Patrick Shanahan, worked for Boeing. Trump's appointment this week of National Counterterrorism Center Director Christopher Miller as acting secretary of defense, coupled with combat veteran Col. Douglas MacGregor as senior adviser, looked set to buck that trend, given MacGregor's vocal opposition to America's Middle Eastern wars.

ALSO ON RT.COM Trump's anti-ISIS envoy admits he MISLED president about US troop numbers in Syria to keep them there

Yet Miller and MacGregor may not be in office for long, if Trump's legal challenges against Biden's apparent victory fail. Should that happen, Biden's progressive voters may be in for a rude reawakening when the former vice president returns to the White House.

Many of these progressives were supporters of Bernie Sanders during the Democratic primaries, while others likely held their nose and voted for Biden out of opposition to Trump. Reps. Barbara Lee (California) and Mark Pocan (Wisconsin), two notable progressives, wrote to Biden on Tuesday asking him not to nominate a defense secretary linked to the weapons industry.

Lee and Pocan cited President Dwight D. Eisenhower's 1961 farewell address, in which he warned of the "disastrous rise" of the "military-industrial complex."

Given Biden's fondness for Flournoy, whom he tapped in 2016 to head the Pentagon under a potential Hillary Clinton administration, the former vice president appears unconcerned about curtailing the influence of the armaments industry.

The industry apparently roots for Joe, too. As Donald Trump surged ahead of Biden on election night, stocks in Raytheon, Lockheed Martin, General Dynamics, and the Carlyle Group all plummeted. Only when counting in swing states stopped and resumed, giving Biden the advantage, did they climb again.

https://platform.twitter.com/embed/index.html?creatorScreenName=RT_com&dnt=false&embedId=twitter-widget-0&frame=false&hideCard=false&hideThread=false&id=1324897860429750273&lang=en&origin=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.rt.com%2Fusa%2F506737-biden-pentagon-team-military-industry%2F&siteScreenName=RT_com&theme=light&widgetsVersion=ed20a2b%3A1601588405575&width=550px

Should a Biden administration make good on running mate Kamala Harris' post-election promise to return to regime-change operations in Syria, these firms and their supporters in the Pentagon stand to make a killing.

However, anti-war leftists, progressives, and Bernie Sanders supporters may soon realize that voting for a Democrat who supported the Iraq War, instead of a Republican who called it "the worst single mistake ever made in the history of our country," might just benefit the military-industrial complex more than the "soul of America."

[Nov 15, 2020] Meet the Filthy Rich War Hawks That Make up the Joe Biden Foreign Policy Team by Alan MacLeod

Nov 15, 2020 | www.mintpressnews.com

Biden's war room

Many of the president-elect's potential picks for foreign policy positions -- including Susan Rice and Michele Flourney -- have onlookers worried. "With a Biden administration, we can expect a continuation of the Middle East wars and possible escalations in places like Syria. Biden could be better than Trump on Iran and Yemen, but judging by his potential cabinet picks, that should not be expected without significant pressure from antiwar activists and lobbyists in Washington," Dave DeCamp , assistant news editor of AntiWar.com told MintPress . "His administration will likely be more successful than Trump at expanding the empire, with a more diplomatic and coherent approach at building alliances to face Russia and China."

Rice, who was the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations and National Security Advisor under Obama, has amassed a fortune of around $40 million . After leaving office, she was given a spot on the board of Netflix, being paid $366,666 as a base salary. On top of that, she was given $2.3 million worth of the company's stock. However, it is her husband, former ABC News executive producer Ian O. Cameron (whose father was a super-wealthy industrialist), who is the prime source of her wealth. She was a key driver in U.S. action in Libya, and also successfully lobbied Obama to place harsher sanctions on North Korea and Iran.

Flournoy, meanwhile, was Under Secretary of Defense for Policy from 2009 to 2012 in the Obama administration under Secretaries Robert Gates and Leon Panetta. After "serving the country," she received lucrative consulting contracts, joined corporate boards, and began her own security think tank, WestExec Advisors. By 2017, she was making a reported $452,000 annually.

"Certainly the possible selection of Michele Flournoy and other WestExec advisors people is concerning," Biden biographer Branko Marcetic told MintPress .

This isn't just because of their corporate/financial ties, though of course that's alarming -- can we be sure that people whose private sector career involved leveraging their government experience and contacts to help multinationals secure favorable business conditions will have their intentions calibrated toward good policy and not to their private sector career?"

"Biden claims he wants an end to the Yemen conflict, but again, words are only so much. It's highly likely that he will have Michele Flornoy as his Secretary of Defense who was one of the voices that stated that weapons should continue to be sold to Saudia Arabia (during the Yemen conflict), under certain conditions, as they have a right to protect themselves. This speaks volumes," said Mariamne Everett of the Institute for Public Accuracy . Rice and Flournoy, she added, were vocal supporters of the disastrous Iraq War, which does not bode well for those concerned with peace.

Marcetic agreed, noting that, while in office, Flourney was "a major liberal interventionist hawk who not only wants U.S. troops deployed all over the world, but has also publicly advocated for the U.S. to majorly exploit its fossil fuel reserves for global dominance," something which would be a "disaster for containing climate catastrophe."

Biden's Foreign Policy Team Hints at War with China, Conflict with Russia An analysis shows Joe Biden's potential foreign policy would closely mirror that of the Pentagon under President Trump. MintPress News | Alan Macleod | Mar 31 Back in the game

The recycling of old faces (many of them considerably richer than before) into the new administration suggests that there will be few breaks from the past on policy, and more in the way of continuation. Biden himself has largely acknowledged this, tweeting , "When I'm speaking to foreign leaders, I'm telling them: America is going to be back. We're going to be back in the game." To many suffering under U.S. sanctions or hiding from U.S. bombs, these words will likely not comfort them . DeCamp suggested that there will be no great difference in policy between Trump and Biden administrations:

Despite Trump being painted as an 'isolationist,' his administration has actually expanded NATO, shored up the support of some Asian countries to counter China, and significantly increased Washington's military footprint in the Pacific. Biden will continue this as he made clear in recent phone calls with Asian leaders and his tough talk on China's claims to the South China Sea during the last presidential debate."

Flournoy meets with Afghan Army personnel during a tour of the Kabul Military Training Center Aug. 7, 2010. Photo | DVIDS

Everett offered a similar analysis, suggesting that, with pro-Israel zealots like Rice advising him, the Biden administration would "expand" on what Trump had done in Palestine as well. Meanwhile, for Latin America, his foreign policy team intends to revive the so-called "anti-corruption drives" of the Obama era, which ultimately overthrew an elected government in Brazil and paved the way for the ascendency of far-right figure Jair Bolsonaro.

Marcetic suggested that Biden would attempt to rejoin many of the international treaties and organizations that the Trump administration had undermined or pulled out of, including NATO and the Paris Climate Agreement.

I expect the prevailing direction of U.S. foreign policy over these last decades to continue: more lawless bombing and killing multiple countries under the cover of "limited engagement," continuing genocidal sanctions against countries like Iran and Venezuela, ongoing treatment of Latin America as an American fiefdom, and militarism and conflict continuing to be the dominant organising principle of U.S. foreign policy, rather than, say, co-operation and stopping climate change," he added.

Independent journalist Caitlin Johnstone recently mockingly wrote that Biden will have "the most diverse, intersectional cabinet of mass murderers ever assembled." If representation is important, it is because it helps assure that people from all walks of life will have a seat at the negotiating table. However, judging by Biden's wealthy picks, it appears that yet again, no one will be representing the great majority of working-class Americans.

Alan MacLeod is a Staff Writer for MintPress News. After completing his PhD in 2017 he published two books: Bad News From Venezuela: Twenty Years of Fake News and Misreporting and Propaganda in the Information Age: Still Manufacturing Consent . He has also contributed to Fairness and Accuracy in Reporting , The Guardian , Salon , The Grayzone , Jacobin Magazine , Common Dreams the American Herald Tribune and The Canary .

[Nov 15, 2020] "What Syria withdrawal- There was never a Syria withdrawal," Jeffrey said

Notable quotes:
"... "Un hombre sin honor." ..."
Nov 15, 2020 | turcopolier.typepad.com

"What Syria withdrawal? There was never a Syria withdrawal," Jeffrey said.


" ... even as he praises the president's support of what he describes as a successful "realpolitik" approach to the region, he acknowledges that his team routinely misled senior leaders about troop levels in Syria.

"We were always playing shell games to not make clear to our leadership how many troops we had there," Jeffrey said in an interview. The actual number of troops in northeast Syria is "a lot more than" the roughly two hundred troops Trump initially agreed to leave there in 2019. Defense One

-------------

"We?" Who are "We?"

State Department people? Well, certainly some of those were involved.

But ... IMO it would not have been possible to deceive or mislead the WH and specifically the Commander in Chief without the active cooperation of CENTCOM, the JCS and OSD.

If they had not been participating in the lying, it would have been obvious in any number of interactions with President Trump that the president's understanding of troop numbers in Syria was not correct and that he was being deceived by "we." (whoever that was). That revelation evidently did not happen. The NSC staff should have detected the lack of truth in reported numbers. That it did not tells me that at least some of the NSC staff were disloyal to Trump. Obvious? Yes, but that is worth re-stating.

James Jeffrey is quite proud of his achievement in maintaining a "realpolik" stalemate in Syria, one that stymies both Russia and the Syrian government.

IMO opinion he is revealed by his own words as a treacherous back stabber. "Un hombre sin honor." pl

https://www.defenseone.com/threats/2020/11/outgoing-syria-envoy-admits-hiding-us-troop-numbers-praises-trumps-mideast-record/170012/


Polish Janitor , 14 November 2020 at 10:55 AM

This is exactly the result of Trump's lack of interest in fulfilling his original promise of ending the "forever wars" in the middle east. This is exactly the result of putting opelny-Democrat Jared Kushner (a lifelong member of Chabad-Lubavich network) and his ilk in charge of the middle east geopolitics.

It also clearly proves that the State Dep. is a monsterous autonomous entity with its own permanent objectives and agendas, independent of the WH. No matter what Trump wanted to achieve in the ME, the so-called Blob (or as Col. Lang here has coined as the "BORG") do what they will. You have to also remember that back in '17, career diplomats and high-ranking State Dep. officials sounded the alarm that Rex Tillerson was down-sizing the Department so much and that it was contrary to American interests abroad etc...fast forward to today, it would not have mattered how much down-sizing Tillerson actually managed to do, they (people like Jeffries) were still able to pursue their own agenda and undermine Trump's original promise of ending the forever wars in the middle east.

The liberal elites managed to 'allegedly' manipulate the election against a sitting president in favor of an highly unappealing candidate in Joe Biden. In all honesty, does anyone think the Blob/Borg would NOT undermine the president's agenda and follow their own permanent objectives aboard?

The Twisted Genius , 14 November 2020 at 11:10 AM

Trump should be furious about this. He should be firing everyone involved in the deception. Those involved don't belong in ANY administration. Was convincing Trump that he was getting the Syrian oil part of this despicable con? As you mentioned last night, this deception is probably also going on in Afghanistan. This is a clear sign of a totally dysfunctional nation security apparatus... Trump's national security apparatus. Could Trump find no one he could trust to carry out his orders? Or did he just not even care? He certainly wasn't up to the task.

However, our troop level in Syria has been widely and openly reported to be above the 200 level since Trump's initial announcement of a total pull out in December 2018. I thought it was odd when shortly after that it was announced that more troops were being sent in to facilitate the withdrawal of the 2,000 plus troops already there. We did reduce the level somewhat, but then we brought in mech infantry with their Bradleys to secure the oil fields and later more to counter the Russian patrols in northeast Syria. And isn't counting whatever we have in Tanf.

Fred , 14 November 2020 at 11:32 AM

TTG,

"He should be firing everyone involved in the deception"

He just fired Esper. "Trump's national security apparatus." You mean America's natonal security apparatus, the one that gave us LTC Vindman and that crew of Ambassadors, and the 'whistlebolower' Chief Justice Robert's wouldn't let any senator name nor ask questions about during the impeachment. You remember all that don't you? I'm sure the same cast of characters Biden would bring back if he succeeds in the rigged election would never do that to him.

JM Gavin , 14 November 2020 at 11:45 AM

COL(R) Mark Mitchell stated the following recently, regarding the duties and responsibilities of the SECDEF in response to POTUS directives. The comments were in regard to Acting SECDEF Miller (a longtime friend and colleague of Mitchell), but apply to any Cabinet or sub-Cabinet post:

"He [POTUS] may make decisions that other people disagree with. They have two options: they can do what he directs them to do, or after they've offered their advice, if they find it illegal, immoral, unethical, unadvisable, they can step down," retired Col. Mark Mitchell, who most recently served in the Pentagon as the principal deputy assistant defense secretary for special operations/low-intensity conflict.

Mitchell added that he resented the implication at the defense secretary should be expected to stand up to the president, or in his way, as the duly elected commander in chief.

"You either carry out your lawful orders or you resign," he said. "We don't get the option to 'stand up to him.' "(End of quote)

Unfortunately, President Trump made many poor personnel decisions, and selected people who believed they had the duty and right to work against the President from within the Administration. This has driven me nuts for the last four years, as I have watched senior civilian and uniformed leaders actively undermining the Commander-in-Chief. They weren't subtle about it. For whatever reason, they mostly got away with it.

To be clear, I am not writing this as a Trump supporter. As a career military professional, I have a duty to support the Commander-in-Chief, and obey lawful orders from the Commander-in-Chief.

It is very easy to play shell games with the BOG caps in the war zones.

JMG

Deap , 14 November 2020 at 11:53 AM

Looking forward to a reprise of Trump's former starring role in The Apprentice, and finally uttering yet again his immortal words: You're Fired!

The final days of Trump's first term are going to be awesome. Banish the Borg. BAMN. Put Biden's fingerprints on any re-hiring.

Typically a new CEO will ask for everyone's resignation, and select and cull according to new needs and new directions. Something Trump should have done, but he too was the apprentice in this office when his term began.

Nothing to stop Trump from doing this now in reverse, and finally cleaning out the dross that was dedicated to his administration's destruction. Better late than never. Our country deserves nothing less. These insider traitors deserve to have their termination for cause permanently be part in their career resumes.

j , 14 November 2020 at 12:33 PM

It appears that POTUS Trump once his re-election is affirmed, urgently needs to fire a large percentage of top-level ranks at the Pentagon, fire the CENTCOM CC and his staff, fire the JCS, close down the NSC until it's thoroughly bleached, and charge all of them under the UCMJ. Bust them down to slick-sleeves and show them the door. How many back-stabbing Vindman types remain within the NSC? They need to be fired and prosecuted under the UCMJ as well.

Robert G Spenser , 14 November 2020 at 01:29 PM

As a citizen I am having great difficulty not concluding that the US is showing all the signs of decline like the late Roman Republic.

James Jeffrey along with the rest of the herd that have run one agitprop disinformation scheme after another since the 2016 election are like the roman senators that had the intent to save the Republic but fatally weakened it by killing Caesar at its very center, in the Senate.

Biden's people are openly calling for even more internet censorship and continuing to rush out inherently dangerous mRNA vaccines without proper testing - and may force us to take it. Groups are starting to create a database of Trump supporters to enable censoring them where they work and live - what is this other than terrorism against half the voting population? If just five percent of the 70M that voted for Trump moves together in resistance then the new regime herd will be holding a tiger by is tail and with the election showing the people are split right down the middle I fail to see how we can avoid even much worse chaos the next four years. The American Republic is disintegrating while the herd is having a romp and thinks it is winning while they are its assassins.

I am sick at heart of this and fear for the future of my children whose standard of living opportunities are in free-fall.

JM Gavin , 14 November 2020 at 02:34 PM

Robert G Spenser,

As the saying goes:

Good times create soft men.

Soft men create hard times.

Hard times create hard men.

Hard men create good times.

Rinse, wash, repeat until your civilization starts to outsource the hard men.

JMG

Fredw , 14 November 2020 at 04:06 PM

We are shocked, SHOCKED! that military bureaucrats are acting in the same ways that they always have. Come on now. The job of president is to get all these people to work in concert to an extent adequate for getting things to come out mostly in our favor. None of this is unique to Trump. Nearly every president in my lifetime has had to learn to deal with these aspects of the military. Jimmy Carter trusted them to plan a rescue mission. They used navy pilots for a mission over the desert! With no extra to enable adaptation to events! Ronald Reagan sent a battleship to Lebanon and then found out the brass wouldn't take the risk of actually using it for anything. Not to mention the superbly uncoordinated near simultaneous invasion of Grenada. John Kennedy accepted a duplicitous projection of events for the bay of pigs. Bill Clinton got caught in Somalia. George W. got sucked into a strategically unplanned invasion of Iraq. Obama was told that an 18-month escalation would resolve Afghanistan. He believed it! Boy were they shocked when he actually enforced the deadline. This is not a criticism of any of those presidents. It is normal, however bizarre that may sound. My point is that they mostly get bit once and learn not to trust the military's own estimates of what they can or should do. Then they begin to do the job more adequately. They learn to pay attention to goals and to manage their resources. Trump does not seem capable of this kind of learning. The last months of an administration are not the time to suddenly discover the nature of the organizations you are leading. And in any case, there is no time left for learning how to get actual results.

Deap , 14 November 2020 at 04:54 PM

JFK never should have unionized the government workforce.

Pits existential self-interests against patriotic national interest, should these interests become in conflict. FDR warned against doing this. More attention needs to be paid to this fundamental national turning point.

What ills were cured by this act (EO) and has the cure become worse than the perceived disease. Must like term limits in California - the cure was 100 times worse than the original disease.

Entrenched political personalities come and go; entrenched and corrupted political systems are forever, because in the process they learned to self-perpetuate.

Much like HAL in the movie 2001.

Deap , 14 November 2020 at 04:57 PM

Name your favorite EO to strike down with an counter-mand EO, before a sitting president leaves office:
1. Anchor baby citizenship triggering chain migration
2. Unionized government workforce

Deap , 14 November 2020 at 05:27 PM

2016: Democrat Game Plan:

1. Use Democrat's standard politics of personal destruction to attack and harass any Trump appointments; make working for the Trump administration so undesirable none dare even ask for consideration.

2. Tie up the President's time with endless personal attacks, lies and investigations, so Trump has no time as elected Chief Executive to oversee and clean up valid government operations;

3. Take advantage of Trump's exclusively private sector experience to lull Trump into thinking entrenched government BORGs are loyal government employees, who serve only to help Trump carry out his Executive Office duties;

4. Leak like crazy; make things up if necessary that ensure the Trump administration narrative appears chaotic and dysfunctional. Claim anonymous sources that undermine positive functioning within Trump administration. Make everyone suspicious of everyone else.

5. Obliterate any recognition for the remarkable Trump administration accomplishments that occurred, regardless of all of the above.

6. Pout relentlessly because regardless of the above, the President and the GOP Senate appointed over 200 new federal judge and 3 new SCOTUS members.

7. In full public view, tear up the SOTU address listing remarkable administration accomplishments mouthing - these are all lies -- laying down the gauntlet for all out war.

8. Gin up pandemic hysteria to fill in any and all loopholes not yet covered by all of the above.

Democrat skullduggery may have effectively destroyed an temporal administration, but Trump Judiciary appointments are the equivalent of a very welcomed forever.

President Trump, you are missed already. But I suspect in short order it is you, who will not miss the office. You are enshrined forever - #45 as President of the United States of America. History will treat you far kinder than your current fellow citizens.

You broke up the Democrat plantation. You exposed the dark underbelly of the body politic. Mission accomplished. There is no going back.

J , 14 November 2020 at 07:27 PM

DHS head Chad Wolf is another anti-Trump in sheep's clothing that Trump needs to get rid of ASAP.

https://nypost.com/2020/11/13/dhs-boss-chad-wolf-defies-trump-order-to-fire-cyber-chief-chris-krebs/

james , 14 November 2020 at 08:21 PM

this sounds like the definition of a traitor to me - jeffery.... on the other hand one could say he is working for wall st and the mil complex and has done a good job... which is it??

Yeah, Right , 15 November 2020 at 12:24 AM

I don't understand this. Trump is the Commander in Chief, at any time he could have asked a straight-up question: How. Many. Troops. Do. We. Still. Have. In. Syria?

I find it astonishing that the military leadership would tell a lie to their Commander in Chief when the question itself leaves no wriggle-room.

Heck, Trump could has asked for a list of every single one of those brave 200 boys, and even if it included Name, Rank, and Serial Number that would still fit on a single letter-sized printout.

I can't understand how Jeffrey's and his band of "we's" could get away with this unless Trump wasn't paying any attention at all.

turcopolier , 15 November 2020 at 12:26 AM

Yeah, right

Yes. He trusted people as I would never have done.

Mike C , 15 November 2020 at 12:33 AM

Questions for the committee:

What legal recourse if any is there against Jeffery or his fellow travelers?

How might Trump "put a kink in the hose" to hobble a potential Biden admin from putting us back into these quagmires?

I'm not at all surprised to see MSM sniping now at Col. Macgregor.

[Nov 14, 2020] The return of the Obama 'adults' in a Joe Biden administration is likely to spell ruin for America by Scott Ritter

Nov 14, 2020 | www.rt.com

Scott Ritter Scott Ritter

is a former US Marine Corps intelligence officer and author of ' SCORPION KING : America's Suicidal Embrace of Nuclear Weapons from FDR to Trump.' He served in the Soviet Union as an inspector implementing the INF Treaty, in General Schwarzkopf's staff during the Gulf War, and from 1991-1998 as a UN weapons inspector. Follow him on Twitter @RealScottRitter 13 Nov, 2020 19:09 Get short URL The return of the Obama 'adults' in a Joe Biden administration is likely to spell ruin for America © REUTERS/Yara Nardi 128 1 Follow RT on RT The US establishment, and the world, has spent the last four years trying to adapt to the disruptive policies of a childish president. Now the Democrats' 'adult' leadership team will return. Watch out, folks.

To those watching the drama unfolding in Washington, DC around the stalled efforts on the part of nominal President-elect Joe Biden in forming a transition team, the parallels are eerily familiar: a bitterly contested election between an establishment political figure and a brash DC 'outsider', a controversial outcome delaying the implementation of the transition between administrations, and an openly condescending atmosphere where the incoming team postured as comprising a return to 'adult' leadership.

That time was December 2000, when a Republican team led by President-elect George W. Bush stood ready to install a cabinet composed of veteran spies, diplomats, and national security managers who had cut their policy teeth during the administrations of Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush. With Colin Powell as secretary of state, Donald Rumsfeld as secretary of defense, George Tenet as director of central intelligence, and Condoleezza Rice as national security advisor, the foreign policy and national security team that Dubya surrounded himself with upon assuming the presidency was as experienced a team as one could imagine.

READ MORE Trump's Pentagon shuffle suggests either no more wars or just one with Iran Trump's Pentagon shuffle suggests either no more wars or just one with Iran

And yet, within two years of assuming their responsibilities, this team of 'adults' had presided over the worst terrorist attack in American history, and the initiation of two wars (in Afghanistan and Iraq) that would forever change both the geopolitical map of the world and America's role as world leader.

Twenty years later, the roles have reversed, with an experienced team of veteran 'adults' hailing from the eight-year tenure of President Barack Obama preparing to transition the US away from four tumultuous years of the presidency of Donald J. Trump. While Biden has not finalized his foreign policy and national security team, there is a consensus among experienced political observers about who the top contenders might be for the 'big four' foreign and national security policy positions in his administration.

While there is no doubting the experience and professional credentials of these potential nominees, they all have one thing in common: a proclivity for military intervention on the part of the US. For anyone who hoped that a Biden administration might complete the task begun by President Trump of leading America out of the 'forever wars' initiated by the 'adults' of the administration of George W. Bush, these choices represent a wake-up call that this will not be the likely outcome.

Moreover, a potential Biden cabinet would more than likely complement the existing predilection on the part of the president-elect for military intervention, pointing to a foreign and national security policy which not only sustains the existing conflicts in Afghanistan, Iraq, Syria, and elsewhere, but increases the likelihood of additional military misadventures. The Biden team will almost certainly seek to shoehorn the president-elect's aggressive "America is back" philosophy into a geopolitical reality that is not inclined to accept such a role sitting down.

So who's likely to fill what role?

Secretary of State

The hands-on favorite here is Susan Rice, who served as both national security advisor and US ambassador to the United Nations under Barack Obama. Biden knows her very well, and they have a great working relationship. With a history of promoting US intervention in Syria and Libya, Rice would more than likely support any policy suggestions concerning a re-engagement by the US in Syria in an effort to contain and/or overthrow Bashar al-Assad, and would be reticent to withdraw US forces from either Afghanistan or Iraq.

She would also most likely seek hardline 'confrontational' policies designed to 'roll-back' Russian influence in Europe and the Middle East, as well as China's claims regarding the South China Sea. Rice would seek to strengthen the military aspects of NATO to better position that organization against Russia in Europe, and China in the Pacific.

A Rice nomination could run afoul of a Republican-controlled Senate, where a source close to the current Senate majority leader, Mitch McConnell, has noted that a " Republican Senate would work with Biden on centrist nominees " but would oppose "radical progressives" or ones who are controversial among conservatives.

While Rice is not a "radical progressive," the Republicans continue to condemn her actions while serving as the US ambassador to the UN in response to the 2012 terrorist attack on the US Consulate in Benghazi, Libya, that left four Americans – including the US ambassador to Libya – dead. This controversy prevented her from becoming secretary of state during Obama's second term, and one can expect a very contentious Senate hearing if she is nominated, with no guarantee that she would pass.

ALSO ON RT.COM Biden administration will find it hard to integrate itself in a world changed by Trump Secretary of Defense

An equally qualified, but far less controversial, woman is the likely nominee for this position. Michele Flournoy, if nominated and confirmed, would become the first female secretary of defense in the history of the US. Given her extensive resume, which includes several previous appointments in senior policy positions in the Department of Defense during both the Clinton and Obama administrations, she would provide an experienced hand in the management of the Pentagon.

Flournoy once famously told the New York Times that " warfare may come in a lot of different flavors in the future. " In her previous postings in the Pentagon, she took a hardline stance against both Russia and China, encouraged military intervention in Libya and Syria, and sustained military operations in Afghanistan. Her proclivity to seek military solutions to challenging foreign policy issues would reinforce the similar inclinations of Biden. With Flournoy at the helm of the Pentagon, America can expect to experience a full menu of war "flavoring."

ALSO ON RT.COM George Galloway: Kiss of death – The winner of the most coveted Henry Kissinger endorsement is... Joe Biden Director of the CIA

While the above two positions represent the ostensible heads of US foreign and defense policy, the reality is that the US has become increasingly reliant upon the covert action capabilities of the Central Intelligence Agency when it comes to influencing diplomatic and military outcomes. While news reports have on occasion lifted the veil of secrecy surrounding covert CIA activities, allowing Americans and the world a small measure of insight into their scope, scale and effectiveness, the reality is that the vast majority of the work of the CIA remains classified, revealed only decades after the fact, if at all.

As the senior Democrat on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, and later as vice president, Biden is intimately familiar with these covert activities, and of the potential of the CIA to impact American foreign and national security policy. One of the names being bandied about for the role of director is Michael Morell. He is a retired career CIA officer, having worked his way up the ranks over the course of a 33-year career, finishing in 2013 having twice served as the acting director under President Obama.

Morell would no doubt manage the agency in a professional manner. He is a CIA man, seeped in the dark arts. Insight into how this experience might manifest itself in a Biden administration was provided through comments Morell made about Syria while appearing on PBS in 2016. " What they need is to have the Russians and Iranians pay a little price ," he said. " When we were in Iraq, the Iranians were giving weapons to the Shia militia, who were killing American soldiers, right? The Iranians were making us pay a price. We need to make the Iranians pay a price in Syria. We need to make the Russians pay a price ."

By "paying a price," Morell meant "killing." Russians and Iranians, he said, should be killed " covertly, so you don't tell the world about it, you don't stand up at the Pentagon and say 'we did this.' But you make sure they know it in Moscow and Tehran ."

ALSO ON RT.COM Back in the USSR: Don't tell Russiagaters, but Biden visited Moscow eight years before Trump, told hosts he was 'sorry to go home' National Security Advisor

If state, defense and the CIA are the three principal tools available to Biden in the conduct of foreign and national security policy, the person responsible for making these three players – along with a host of other departments and agencies – come together as a single team falls to the national security advisor. Here, Biden seems to be leaning toward another experienced hand, Antony Blinken.

Blinken's resume includes stints at the State Department and National Security Council during the Obama administration. Like the other potential nominees, Blinken possesses the kind of experience necessary to hit the ground running. As someone who knows and is well known by all the major policy players that could populate a Biden administration, including the president-elect himself, Blinken would be able to coordinate policy formulation and implementation in a seamless fashion.

Therein, however, lies the rub – Blinken would serve as a facilitator of interventionist policy positions that he is inherently inclined to agree with. Like Biden's other potential nominees, Blinken supported the Obama interventions in Syria and Libya, two events that serve as a litmus test for ascertaining potential interventionist scenarios in the future.

Whereas a national security advisor should insulate the presidency from the more focused, hardline policy proposals put forward by state and defense, and provide balance when it comes to considering covert action proposals from the CIA, Blinken would function more as a superhighway of interventionist policy options between these entities and a president whose own background can be defined as never having seen an opportunity for US intervention that he didn't like.

As things stand today, one cannot predict the composition of a Biden cabinet with absolute certainty; it is likely that one or more of the potential candidates listed here will fall by the wayside, their path blocked by the unpredictability of a Senate confirmation at the hands of a hostile Republican Party.

But the predilection for military intervention and covert action will define any Biden-led cabinet, regardless of exactly who ends up seated there. In the end, the likelihood that this iteration of 'adult' leadership ends up getting America embroiled in excessive interventions that further disrupt the global geopolitical balance in the US's disfavor while costing its people precious blood and treasure is high.

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The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of RT.


[Nov 14, 2020] 'Forever war' returns- Biden's Pentagon team puts the military-industrial complex back in command - reports -- RT USA News

Nov 14, 2020 | www.rt.com

'Forever war' returns: Biden's Pentagon team puts the military-industrial complex back in command - reports 14 Nov, 2020 17:28 / Updated 5 hours ago Get short URL 'Forever war' returns: Biden's Pentagon team puts the military-industrial complex back in command - reports Joe Biden and MIchele Flournoy © Reuters / Jonathan Ernst and Yuri Gripas 450 Follow RT on RT Despite campaign-trail overtures to progressives, a Joe Biden presidency seems to spell a return to normalcy in the most time-honored American way: by placing the military-industrial complex in charge of the country's defense.

Joe Biden's campaign message focused almost entirely on Donald Trump, and on Biden's supposed ability to "unify" a polarized electorate and "restore the soul of America." Since he claimed victory last week, Biden's prospective administration has begun to take shape, and the reality behind the rhetoric has started to emerge.

On matters of defense, restoring America's "soul" apparently means placing weapons manufacturers back in charge of the Pentagon.

ALSO ON RT.COM The return of the Obama 'adults' in a Joe Biden administration is likely to spell ruin for America

Biden announced his Department of Defense landing team on Tuesday. Of these 23 policy experts, one third have taken funding from arms manufacturers, according to a report published this week by Antiwar.com .

A knot of hawks

Leading the team is Kathleen Hicks, an undersecretary of defense in the Obama administration, and an employee of the Cen­ter for Strate­gic and Inter­na­tion­al Stud­ies (CSIS), a think tank funded by a host of NATO governments, oil firms, and weapons makers Northrop Grumman, Boeing, Lockheed Martin, Raytheon, and General Atomics. The latter firm produces the Predator drones used by the Obama administration to kill hundreds of civilians in at least four Middle-Eastern countries.

Hicks was a vocal opponent of President Donald Trump's plan to withdraw a number of US troops from Germany, claiming in August that such a move "benefits our adversaries."

Two other members of Biden's Pentagon team, Andrew Hunter and Melissa Dalton, work for CSIS and served under Obama in the Defense Department.

ALSO ON RT.COM Biden has defeated Trump. Meet the new boss same as the old boss

Also on the team are Susanna Blume and Ely Ratner, who work for the Center for a New American Security (CNAS). Another hawkish think-tank, CNAS is funded by Google, Facebook, Raytheon, Northrop Grumman and Lockheed Martin. Three more team members – Stacie Pettyjohn, Christine Wormuth and Terri Tanielian – were most recently employed by the RAND corporation, which draws funding from the US military, NATO, several Gulf states, and hundreds of state and corporate sources.

Michele Flournoy is widely tipped to lead the Pentagon under Biden. Flournoy would be the first woman in history to head the Defense Department, but her appointment would only be revolutionary on the surface. Flournoy is the co-founder of CNAS, and served in the Pentagon under Obama and Bill Clinton. As under secretary of defense for policy under Obama, Flournoy helped craft the 2010 troop surge in Afghanistan, a deployment of 100,000 US troops that led to a doubling in American deaths and made little measurable progress toward ending the war.

'Forever war' returns

President Trump, who campaigned on stopping the US' "forever wars" in the Middle East and remains the first US president in 40 years not to start a new conflict, has nevertheless also staffed the Pentagon with hawkish officials. Recently ousted Defense Secretary Mark Esper was a top lobbyist for Raytheon, while his predecessor, Patrick Shanahan, worked for Boeing. Trump's appointment this week of National Counterterrorism Center Director Christopher Miller as acting secretary of defense, coupled with combat veteran Col. Douglas MacGregor as senior adviser, looked set to buck that trend, given MacGregor's vocal opposition to America's Middle Eastern wars.

ALSO ON RT.COM Trump's anti-ISIS envoy admits he MISLED president about US troop numbers in Syria to keep them there

Yet Miller and MacGregor may not be in office for long, if Trump's legal challenges against Biden's apparent victory fail. Should that happen, Biden's progressive voters may be in for a rude reawakening when the former vice president returns to the White House.

Many of these progressives were supporters of Bernie Sanders during the Democratic primaries, while others likely held their nose and voted for Biden out of opposition to Trump. Reps. Barbara Lee (California) and Mark Pocan (Wisconsin), two notable progressives, wrote to Biden on Tuesday asking him not to nominate a defense secretary linked to the weapons industry.

Lee and Pocan cited President Dwight D. Eisenhower's 1961 farewell address, in which he warned of the "disastrous rise" of the "military-industrial complex."

Given Biden's fondness for Flournoy, whom he tapped in 2016 to head the Pentagon under a potential Hillary Clinton administration, the former vice president appears unconcerned about curtailing the influence of the armaments industry.

The industry apparently roots for Joe, too. As Donald Trump surged ahead of Biden on election night, stocks in Raytheon, Lockheed Martin, General Dynamics, and the Carlyle Group all plummeted. Only when counting in swing states stopped and resumed, giving Biden the advantage, did they climb again.

https://platform.twitter.com/embed/index.html?creatorScreenName=RT_com&dnt=false&embedId=twitter-widget-0&frame=false&hideCard=false&hideThread=false&id=1324897860429750273&lang=en&origin=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.rt.com%2Fusa%2F506737-biden-pentagon-team-military-industry%2F&siteScreenName=RT_com&theme=light&widgetsVersion=ed20a2b%3A1601588405575&width=550px

Should a Biden administration make good on running mate Kamala Harris' post-election promise to return to regime-change operations in Syria, these firms and their supporters in the Pentagon stand to make a killing.

However, anti-war leftists, progressives, and Bernie Sanders supporters may soon realize that voting for a Democrat who supported the Iraq War, instead of a Republican who called it "the worst single mistake ever made in the history of our country," might just benefit the military-industrial complex more than the "soul of America."

[Nov 13, 2020] Neocons Poised to Join New Government by Phil Geraldi

Notable quotes:
"... It would not be overstating the case to suggest that the neoconservative movement has now been born again, though the enemy is now the unreliable Trumpean-dominated Republican Party rather than Saddam Hussein or Ayatollah Khomeini. ..."
"... The transition has also been aided by a more aggressive shift among the Democrats themselves, with Russiagate and other “foreign interference” being blamed for the party’s failure in 2016. ..."
"... The unifying principle that ties many of the mostly Jewish neocons together is, of course, unconditional defense of Israel and everything it does, which leads them to support a policy of American global military dominance which they presume will inter alia serve as a security umbrella for the Jewish state. ..."
Nov 13, 2020 | turcopolier.typepad.com

Donald Trump was much troubled during his 2016 and 2020 campaigns by so-called conservatives who rallied behind the #NeverTrump banner, presumably in opposition to his stated intention to end or at least diminish America’s role in wars in the Middle East and Asia. Those individuals are generally described as neoconservatives but the label is itself somewhat misleading and they might more properly be described as liberal warmongers as they are closer to the Democrats than the Republicans on most social issues and are now warming up even more as the new Joe Biden Administration prepares to take office.

To be sure, some neocons stuck with the Republicans, to include the highly controversial Elliott Abrams, who initially opposed Trump but is now the point man for dealing with both Venezuela and Iran. Abrams’ conversion reportedly took place when he realized that the new president genuinely embraced unrelenting hostility towards Iran as exemplified by the ending of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) and the assassination of Iranian general Qassem Soleimani in Baghdad. John Bolton was also a neocon in the White House fold, though he is now a frenemy having been fired by the president and written a book.

Even though the NeverTrumper neocons did not succeed in blocking Donald Trump in 2016, they have been maintaining relevancy by slowly drifting back towards the Democratic Party, which is where they originated back in the 1970s in the office of the Senator from Boeing Henry “Scoop” Jackson. A number of them started their political careers there, to include leading neocon Richard Perle.

It would not be overstating the case to suggest that the neoconservative movement has now been born again, though the enemy is now the unreliable Trumpean-dominated Republican Party rather than Saddam Hussein or Ayatollah Khomeini.

The transition has also been aided by a more aggressive shift among the Democrats themselves, with Russiagate and other “foreign interference” being blamed for the party’s failure in 2016. Given that mutual intense hostility to Trump, the doors to previously shunned liberal media outlets have now opened wide to the stream of foreign policy “experts” who want to “restore a sense of the heroic” to U.S. national security policy. Eliot A. Cohen and David Frum are favored contributors to the Atlantic while Bret Stephens and Bari Weiss were together at the New York Times prior to Weiss’s recent resignation.

Jennifer Rubin, who wrote in 2016 that “It is time for some moral straight talk: Trump is evil incarnate,” is a frequent columnist for The Washington Post while both she and William Kristol appear regularly on MSNBC.

The unifying principle that ties many of the mostly Jewish neocons together is, of course, unconditional defense of Israel and everything it does, which leads them to support a policy of American global military dominance which they presume will inter alia serve as a security umbrella for the Jewish state. In the post-9/11 world, the neocon media’s leading publication The Weekly Standard virtually invented the concept of “Islamofascism” to justify endless war in the Middle East, a development that has killed millions of Muslims, destroyed at least three nations, and cost the U.S. taxpayer more than $5 trillion. The Israel connection has also resulted in neocon support for an aggressive policy against Russia due to its involvement in Syria and has led to repeated calls for the U.S. to attack Iran and destroy Hezbollah in Lebanon. In Eastern Europe, neocon ideologues have aggressively sought “democracy promotion,” which, not coincidentally, has also been a major Democratic Party foreign policy objective.

The neocons are involved in a number of foundations, the most prominent of which is the Foundation for Defense of Democracies (FDD), that are funded by Jewish billionaires. FDD is headed by Canadian Mark Dubowitz and it is reported that the group takes direction coming from officials in the Israeli Embassy in Washington. Other major neocon incubators are the American Enterprise Institute, which currently is the home of Paul Wolfowitz, and the School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS) at John Hopkins University. The neocon opposition has been sniping against Trump over the past four years but has been biding its time and building new alliances, waiting for what it has perceived to be an inevitable regime change in Washington.

That change has now occurred and the surge of neocons to take up senior positions in the defense, intelligence and foreign policy agencies will soon take place. In my notes on the neocon revival, I have dubbed the brave new world that the neocons hope to create in Washington as the “Kaganate of Nulandia” after two of the more prominent neocon aspirants, Robert Kagan and Victoria Nuland.

Robert was one of the first neocons to get on the NeverTrump band wagon back in 2016 when he endorsed Hillary Clinton for president and spoke at a Washington fundraiser for her, complaining about the “isolationist” tendency in the Republican Party exemplified by Trump. His wife Victoria Nuland is perhaps better known. She was the driving force behind efforts to destabilize the Ukrainian government of President Viktor Yanukovych. Yanukovych, an admittedly corrupt autocrat, nevertheless became Prime Minister after a free election. Nuland, who was the Assistant Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs at the State Department, provided open support to the Maidan Square demonstrators opposed to Yanukovych’s government, to include media friendly appearances passing out cookies on the square to encourage the protesters.

A Dick Cheney and Hillary Clinton protégé, Nuland openly sought regime change for Ukraine by brazenly supporting government opponents in spite of the fact that Washington and Kiev had ostensibly friendly relations. Her efforts were backed by a $5 billion budget, but she is perhaps most famous for her foul language when referring to the potential European role in managing the unrest that she and the National Endowment for Democracy had helped create. The replacement of the government in Kiev was only the prelude to a sharp break and escalating conflict with Moscow over Russia’s attempts to protect its own interests in Ukraine, most particularly in Crimea.

And, to be sure, beyond regime change in places like Ukraine, President Barack Obama was no slouch when it came to starting actual shooting wars in places like Libya and Syria while also killing people, including American citizens, using drones. Biden appears poised to inherit many former Obama White House senior officials, who would consider the eager-to-please neoconservatives a comfortable fit as fellow foot soldiers in the new administration. Foreign policy hawks expected to have senior positions in the Biden Administration include Antony Blinken, Nicholas Burns, Susan Rice, Valerie Jarrett, Samantha Power and, most important of all the hawkish Michele Flournoy, who has been cited as a possible secretary of defense. And don’t count Hillary Clinton out. Biden is reportedly getting his briefings on the Middle East from Dan Shapiro, former U.S. Ambassador to Israel, who now lives in the Jewish state and is reportedly working for an Israeli government supported think tank, the Institute for National Security Studies.

Nowhere in Biden’s possible foreign policy circle does one find anyone who is resistant to the idea of worldwide interventionism in support of claimed humanitarian objectives, even if it would lead to a new cold war with major competitor powers like Russia and China. In fact, Biden himself appears to embrace an extremely bellicose view on a proper relationship with both Moscow and Beijing “claiming that he is defending democracy against its enemies.” His language is unrelenting, so much so that it is Donald Trump who could plausibly be described as the peace candidate in the recently completed election, having said at the Republican National Convention in August “Joe Biden spent his entire career outsourcing their dreams and the dreams of American workers, offshoring their jobs, opening their borders and sending their sons and daughters to fight in endless foreign wars, wars that never ended.”

Polish Janitor , 13 November 2020 at 11:34 AM

It should be noted that the return of "neocons" does not mean the return of people like Wolfowitz, Ladeen, Feith, Kristol who are more "straussian" than "liberal/internationalist", but those like Nuland, Rice, Sam Powell, Petraeus, Flournoy, heck even Hilary Clinton as UN Ambassador who are CFR-type liberal interventionist than pure military hawks such as Bolton or Mike Flynn. These liberal internationalists, as opposed to straussian neocons, will intervene in collaboration with EU/NATO/QUAD (i.e. multilaterally) in the name upholding human rights and toppling authoritarianism, rather than for oil, WMDs, or similar concrete objectives. In very simple terms, the new Biden administration's foreign policy will be none other than the return to "endless wars" for nation-building purposes first and last.

fakebot , 13 November 2020 at 11:43 AM

The name Kagan is the Russianized version of the name Cohen. He was going to be McCain's NSA had he been elected. They pulled a stunt with the Bush admin to make Obama look weak by pushing Georgia into war with Russia in 2008. Sakaasvili, the president of Georgia, was literally eating his own tie:

https://cdn1.img.sputniknews.com/img/102445/69/1024456927_0:98:1000:639_1000x541_80_0_0_d2bb118481dc653ec7d2a8b170b8f6bf.jpg

A lot of the neocons are Russian Jews who grew up in households that were Bolshevik communists. They're idea of spreading democracy goes back to Trotsky who tried to spread communism through the Soviet Union. Their hatred toward Russia dates back to their ancestors feudal days under the Tsars and the pogroms they suffered and the ice pick Trotsky got to the head.

I don't think they have that much influence. They pushed a lot of nonsense in the late 70/early 80s about how the Taliban were George Washingtons and here we are today, they're worst than the Comanche. The last time I saw Richard Perle make a TV appearance, he was crying like a baby. Robert Novak, the prince of darkness, was a Ron Paul supporter. The only ones really kicking around are Bill Kristol and Jennifer Rubin, but Kristol was almost alone when he was talking about putting 50,000 boots on the ground in Syria. Rubin is a harpie who only got crazier and crazier. Kagan had his foot in the door with Hillary only because of his wife. Those two might get back in with Biden on Ukraine, but Biden would do well to keep them at a distance.

Mark K Logan , 13 November 2020 at 11:57 AM

Thanks.

The lone bright spot is Biden's stated intention of restoring the JCPOA. And, I guess, the pending defenestration of Pompeo The Great.

I suspect the condition of the US economy and the massive deficits will assist in discouraging rash actions elsewhere. Have to wait and see.

Fred , 13 November 2020 at 12:36 PM

Obama's deep state lied, people died:
https://www.defenseone.com/threats/2020/11/outgoing-syria-envoy-admits-hiding-us-troop-numbers-praises-trumps-mideast-record/170012/

It's great when career professionals sabotage the elected president's foreign policy.

JM Gavin , 13 November 2020 at 01:00 PM

I've never quite figured out the "neocon" ideology, beyond the fact that neocons seem devoted to the sort of status quo present in Washington, D.C. during the three administrations prior to Trump. Military adventurism, nation-building, and interventionist foreign policy, all based on nebulous concepts which are applied unevenly around the world.

It seems now that there is a new breed of neocons, unified by opposition to Trump's messaging, but not much else. Odd to find people like Samantha Power, John Bolton, Jim Mattis, and Paul Wolfowitz marching together in perfect step.

The Beaver , 13 November 2020 at 02:49 PM

Mr Geraldi

A good perspective by Philip Weiss on the same subject. Eliot A Cohen must be communicating a lot with the Kagan brothers , Dennis Ross and Perle to see who can be parachuted either to the WH or Foggy Bottom.

https://mondoweiss.net/2020/10/neoconservatives-are-flocking-to-biden-and-lets-forget-about-the-iran-deal/

BrianC , 13 November 2020 at 03:08 PM

@JM Gavin

I've never quite figured out the "neocon" ideology

The revolutionary spirit (see E. Michael Jones' work). From communism to neoconservatism it's ultimately an attack on the Beatitudes and Christ's Sermon on the Mount.

"The works of mercy are the opposite of the works of war" -- Servant of God Dorothy Day

Mark K Logan , 13 November 2020 at 03:23 PM

JM Gavin,

Sir,

I hold the Cold Warriors like Scoop a species distinct from those of the post-USSR era. The current version started at the end of the cold war. We felt like kings of the world after Gulf War 1 and the shoe seemed to fit.

The HW Bush administration pondered how best to use this power for good. I've read some things which report there was a debate within the administration on whether to clean up Yugoslavia or Somalia first. They got Ron to "do the honors" for the invasion of Somalia at Oxford: About 20 minutes in.

https://www.c-span.org/video/?35586-1/arising-ashes-world-order

That was played as part of the pep-talk on the Juneau off the coast of Somalia. Stirring stuff.

In some small way I never stopped sipping that Kool Aid. It's hard to stand by and watch unspeakable evil go down when you have the power to stop it...or think you do. Time will tell if the Neocons are capable of perceiving the limits of force. Certainly had some hard lessons in the last few decades.

EEngineer , 13 November 2020 at 03:57 PM

@JM Gavin

Hogs lining up for a spot at the trough?

The Neocon movement seems to have morphed into nothing more than a club for bullies trying to one up each other.

Dan , 13 November 2020 at 04:35 PM

I think its generally shocking that Trump or the republicans didn't make a bigger issue of Biden's history of supporting disastrous intervention, especially his Iraq War vote. Maybe they felt like its not a winning issue, that they would lose as many votes as they gain by appearing more isolationist.

But overall, Trump favoring diplomacy over cruise missiles should have been a bigger point in his favor in the election.

jerseycityjoan , 13 November 2020 at 04:52 PM

It is distressing to read that we will have people in the government who are looking for a fight. That is especially true in view of China's aggression in recent years and the responses we will have to make to that. I think we will have more than enough to do to handle China. What do the neocons want to do about China?

Here is an article about China that really startled me and made me realize how much of a threat is was becoming. The Air Force chief of staff talks about the challenges of countries trying to compete militarily with us in ways that have not occurred for awhile. Here are two quotes that really got me:

"Tomorrow's Airmen are more likely to fight in highly contested environments, and must be prepared to fight through combat attrition rates and risks to the nation that are more akin to the World War II era than the uncontested environments to which we have since become accustomed," Brown writes."

And

"Wargames and modeling have repeatedly shown that if the Air Force fails to adapt, there will be mission failure, Brown warns. Rules-based international order may "disintegrate and our national interests will be significantly challenged," according to the memo."

https://www.airforcemag.com/brown-air-force-must-speed-up-change-or-face-harsh-consequences/#.X02DjeMiZQM.mailto

The article doesn't say we will have another arms race but that is an obvious response to China's competition with us. I thought all that was done and gone. I do not want to resume it. I don't want another period of foreign entanglements, period. We still haven't paid for the War Against Terrorism. I look into the future and all I see is us racking up bills that we have no ability to pay. And then there is the human cost of all this, I don't want to even think about that.

turcopolier , 13 November 2020 at 05:40 PM

jerseycityjoan

"I thought all that was done and gone. I do not want to resume it." Childish. "Only the dead have seen the end of war."

JM Gavin , 13 November 2020 at 05:54 PM

EEngineer,

Snouts in the trough accounts for a certain amount of neocons, I'm sure. There is, however, a unifying vision beyond that which puzzles me, given the very different political orientations of various neocons. Neocons are found in academia and the media as well. Those types are less dependent on taxpayer dollars in exchange for their views (they'll get whatever tax money gets pushed their way in grants, etc regardless).

I find Polish Janitor's "straussian" and "liberal/internationalist" flavors of neocon intriguing, as I hadn't considered that before.

JMG

JM Gavin , 13 November 2020 at 05:59 PM

COL Lang's quote from Plato reminds me of another (from Cormac McCarthy): "It makes no difference what men think of war, said the judge. War endures. As well ask men what they think of stone. War was always here. Before man was, war waited for him. The ultimate trade awaiting its ultimate practitioner. That is the way it was and will be. That way and not some other way."

Neocons don't really prefer war, so much as they prefer overseas "engagements" that may look like war and smell like war. All that's missing in neocon military operations is a defined end state.

JMG

JM Gavin , 13 November 2020 at 06:10 PM

Mark K. Logan,

I concur with your thoughts about standing by as evil occurs. We just have a habit of jumping into complex situations we don't understand, and making things worse. I suspect you feel the same way.

The military misadventures during my career (Somalia, Afghanistan, Iraq, Yemen, Syria) were marked by our own black and white thinking. The more successful adventures (Colombia, Nepal) were marked by our appreciation (to a certain extent) of the complex nature of the environments we were getting involved in...and the fact that we weren't involved in nation-building in the latter two locales. There were viable governments in place, and we weren't trying to replace them.

JMG

Deap , 13 November 2020 at 06:53 PM

Here is another Biden clip that should have been exploited too - way back when - when the media was a little more trusted, but no less pompous. However, Biden The Plagerizer had it coming.

Now tell me America is not the Land of Opportunity, when one can continuously shoot themselves in the foot and then rise from the dead yet again, and again: https://rumble.com/vb3c09-resurfaced-video-of-joe-biden-should-destroy-him.html?mref=23gga&mrefc=2

Though I am warming more and more to Trump Media becoming the real soul of America. Plus someone, in time. will need to pick up Rush Limbaugh's empire. America needs a counter-weight to fake news more than it needs the keys to the White House, with all its entangling webs, palace intrigues, chains and pitfalls.

Godspeed President Trump. If someone with as few talents s Biden can rise like Lazarus, just think what you can do with your little finger. No wonder the Democrats want Trump destroyed; not just defeated in a re-election. We have your back, Mr President.

TV , 13 November 2020 at 07:03 PM

Mark Logan:
Iran celebrates "Death to America" as a national day.
So let's give them a path to nuclear weapons.

Deap , 13 November 2020 at 07:11 PM

Ex-CIA analyst, Mich Rep. Elissa Slotkin refuses to back Pelosi for Speaker - anyone know her? https://www.newsmax.com/politics/elissa-slotkin-nancy-pelosi-democrat-house/2020/11/13/id/996905/ She wants more mid-West, and less Calif and NY, as the new face of the Democrat Party.

Fred , 13 November 2020 at 07:14 PM

Mark,

"It's hard to stand by and watch unspeakable evil go down when you have the power to stop it...."


I hear Trump is evil/Hitler/worse. I wonder if anyone who thinks that is true has the power to rig an election, or thinks they do?

jerseycityjoan , 13 November 2020 at 07:50 PM

Colonel,

You are right of course.

Are the people of America up for another arms race and a more or less cold war with China? I think the Chinese will give us a lot more trouble than the Soviets ever did.

And yet we allow their students to come here and learn all we know and their elites to bring their dirty money here and we give them green cards and citizenship and protect the money they took from the Chinese people. Not so smart on our part.

I am very concerned about all of this.

Serge , 13 November 2020 at 07:57 PM

What is the next theater of war that Biden's new friends will involve us in? I noticed lots of Cold War era conflicts are heating up lately, Ethiopia Morocco Armenia being recent examples. IS in Syria/Iraq is still castrated due to the continued mass internment of their population base in the dozens of camps, but they have established thriving franchises in Africa and their other provinces continue to smolder.

[Nov 13, 2020] Biden is ab old, semi-senile, but still very dangerous neoliberal political shark, who was instrumental in the creation of Russiagate hoax and prosecution of General Flynn

Nov 13, 2020 | www.amazon.com

During a July 19, 2020 appearance on Operation Freedom, General Mclnerney, referring to his original March 19, 2017 interview about TFIE HAMMER, stated:

What we didn't know 011 that date in March 2017 was that's what was presented to President Obama on the 5th of January [2017] just before he left office when they opened the investigation and he directed the FBI to look into and the reason why the FBI sent two people over to interview General Flynn. Aid that information 011 the Kislvak memo came from HAMMER. It wasn't a normal NSA document.

Aid that's why Sally Yates wasn't aware of it until the president mentioned it and said put the appropriate people. That's a dog whistle to put our special team on. Aid so, Biden was sitting in that meeting. Biden. Biden has got Russian collusion all over him along with President Obama.

This could not have happened unless Obama was letting it happen. So that's why we've got to get John Durham's grand juries going and going on in a hurry, so the Anerican people know how corrupt the entire Democratic party is, but also the media...

...The Obama Administration cabal waged a criminal campaign against General Flynn, including attempting to frame General Flynn with Logan Act violations when General Flynn had done no such thing. Peter Strzok's hand-written notes suggest that it was Vice President Joe Biden who came up with the idea of prosecuting General Flynn for Logan Act violations. General Flynn, the incoming National Security Adviser, had cut no deals or suggested any deals to Russian Ambassador Kislvak, as they well knew.

Biden knew 'damn well' about spying on Trump campaign- Rep Nunes - YouTube

Director Comey's announcement that the FBI was investigating whether President Trump had connections to the Kremlin, issued less than 24 hours after the conclusion of General Mclnerney's radio interview, proved that Admiral Lyons and General Mclnerney, with information from Fanning and Jones of The Anerican Report, were right 011 target -- THE HAMMER is the key to the coup.

A the FBI used to say, "There are no coincidences."

They had stolen the keys to the kingdom, and they wanted to keep their weapon.

Strzok and Page were aware of, and texting about, Dennis Montgomery. Both Strzok and Page were intimately involved with the Russian Collusion Hoax. Both Strzok and Page were key participants in the coup d etat -- a coup d etat against a duly-elected United States president. This act of treason had never been seen before in America.

Regardless of whether Strzok and Page had Iranian family members or grew up in Iran, their oath as public servants was to the United States Constitution. The actions of Strzok and Page were the actions of an enemy.

In An Act Of Treason Ancl Sedition, The FBI and DOJ Buried Evidence Of Obama, Brennan, And Clapper's Illegal Use Of THE HAMMER For Domestic Spying

[Nov 13, 2020] With Biden at the helm, both Democrats and those Republicans (like Mitt Romney) who do not support Trump can push for further neoliberal, military and other activity against Russia in eastern Europe and Transcaucasia (Abkhazia, South Ossetia). They might also try to resurrect their war in Syria and ensure Syria can never get the Golan Heights back.

Nov 13, 2020 | www.moonofalabama.org

Jen , Nov 11 2020 22:34 utc | 106

Karlofi @ 93:

"... Now I'm posing this as a serious question. What does the Duopoly gain from Biden that it can't get from Trump?"

Surely the money pump that was dispensing largesse to the post-Maidan regime in Ukraine via the contacts that regime has with the DNC (Crowdstrike, the Atlantic Council and the media who take the Atlantic Council's money, like Bellingcat for example) before 2017, and which must have dried up while Trump was President, will start up again should Biden last long enough past his inauguration. After all, you know he did indeed push former Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko to sack his Prosecutor General Viktor Shokin for continuing to investigate the activities of Mykola Zlochevsky and his company Burisma Holdings (at which Hunter Biden was on the Board of Directors) and even boasted about it.

With Biden at the helm, both Democrats and those Republicans (like Mitt Romney) who do not support Trump can push for further neoliberal, military and other activity against Russia in eastern Europe and Transcaucasia (Abkhazia, South Ossetia). They might also try to resurrect their war in Syria and ensure Syria can never get the Golan Heights back.


H.Schmatz , Nov 11 2020 22:50 utc | 115

@Posted by: Jen | Nov 11 2020 22:34 utc | 105

But if Atlantic Council is onlyy a DNC tool, how do you explain that under YTrump administration and Pompeo SoS it was Atlantic Council fellow Franak ViaÇorca who helped organize the Belarusina color revolution, to the extent that now he figures in his Twitter account as Tikhanovskaya´s personal advisor?

karlof1 , Nov 11 2020 23:01 utc | 117

Jen @105--

Thanks for your reply! IMO, there wasn't much drop-off in Color Revolution activity under Trump, and he followed fairly closely the National Defense Directives against both Russia and China. Perhaps its the blatant rejection of treaties since Biden has vowed to rejoin/renegotiate, particularly New START. Maybe it's resistance to a currently secret policy ploy like the Great Reset or Biden's announced very different approach to the pandemic or some other secret schism we're not privy to yet. I don't doubt the vote result here in Oregon since our system is extremely hard to violate in any massive manner--it was an emotional contest thus the high turnout. The joined Media Narrative is cause for concern for it signals another BigLie, and to go through that effort means a rather important motive.

vk , Nov 12 2020 2:30 utc | 151

Posted by: Jackrabbit | Nov 12 2020 1:34 utc | 143

The history of the last three decades show that Republican's wage major wars while Democrats wage small and/or covert wars (liberal interventions) and regime changes. Republicans will never relinquish the patriotic mantle that allows them to trump (pun intended) the left's aspirations.

I don't think this holds water. What I see is a clear pattern of decline:

1) George H. W. Bush directly invades Iraq with legitimate American forces. It a full-fledged invasion, the first war declared for explicitly economic purposes by the USA. Nobody finds it weird or contests it, because the USA had just emerged victorious from the Cold War and is now the sole superpower;

2) Bill Clinton, in order to not rub American supremacy on everybody's faces, invades Somalia and annihilates Yugoslavia with legitimate American forces behind a UN flag. He wins Yugoslavia but doesn't manage to do a Communist Nürnberg Trial, and loses in Somalia. The first chink in the armor of the sole hegemon;

3) George W. Bush wins through electoral fraud (Florida). 9/11 happens with his blessing. He then has to do a kabuki in order to blame it all on Iraq and Afghanistan. Even then he doesn't earn the UN's blessing. He invades Iraq and Afghanistan with legitimate American forces and wins in Iraq. He takes Iraq's oil reserves, but the objective doesn't solve America's economic problems. Afghanistan turns into a swamp. He fails to invade Iran and fails to bomb North Korea. He loses against Russia in Georgia. The USA still is able to invade other countries and destroy them with legitimate American forces, but with much more difficulty and not always achieving what it wants. For the first time since the beginning of the End of History invasions are halted before they even begin;

4) Obama has to begin his government with a mammoth USD 1.1 trn unconditional bailout to America's big banks and other companies. He tries to make a profit from the occupation of Iraq by recalling American troops and substituting them with drones and mercenaries (Blackwater). Afghanistan continues to drain the coffers. Russia rises. China rises. He pathetically tries to invade Syria with auxiliaries (ISIS) and fails utterly (Russia even imposes a no-fly zone to NATO/USA). Invasions are then further scaled down to color revolutions (Ukraine, etc.). South China Sea is lost without even a fight. Ukraine is partitioned by Russia after the color revolution and NATO loses the Black Sea forever;

5) Trump cannot even begin a new war. He contents himself with color revolution in Latin America, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Belarus and other Central Asian countries. For the first time since the End of History, a POTUS tries to be friends with a previous enemy nation (North Korea and Russia). For the first time, a color revolution is reverted in Latin America (Bolivia), while a clandestine invasion of Venezuela also fails.

So, the pattern here is clearly one of decline. At the beginning of the End of History (1991), the USA can invade anyone with its regular forces, legally and with the blessing of the UN and NATO - and wins all those conflicts. Then, it begins to lose or at least not completely win - but still do the whole thing legally, with regular forces and with blessings. Then it still is capable of invading and winning - but not legally and not with the blessing of even the main NATO allies (France and Germany); also, even when it wins, it is clear it was not what the Empire needed to stay afloat. Then, it has to abandon any prospects of invasion by regular forces, having to resort to color revolutions and clandestine auxiliaries (terrorist armies). Then it is not even capable of doing those color revolutions successfully anymore (except in Latin America - the Empire's historical little bitch, so it doesn't really count).

The conclusion we can reach here is that Trump didn't initiate any new war for the simple fact he couldn't: the Empire is overstretched, its resources dwindling.

With Biden, I think we'll witness this process deepening, but in another key:

Biden Outlines Plans to Reset U.S. Foreign Policy After Trump

"Political wisdom holds that Americans, the American public, doesn't vote on foreign policy," he said in New York, speaking before a crowd that included some former diplomats. "But I think that's an old way of thinking. In 2019 foreign policy is domestic policy in my view. And domestic policy is foreign policy."

With Biden, we can see for the first time in American history the USA officially admitting it is an empire. The American people will be directly involved and voting and supporting for foreign policy, i.e. invasions and interventions. Domestic policy will fuse with foreign policy, in a typical imperial metamorphosis. There will be no going back, it will be a war of annihilation between the USA (I'm here including its provinces) and the rest of the world. As the famous Soviet epic once said, it will be a battle not for glory, but "for life on Earth".

Jackrabbit , Nov 12 2020 2:52 utc | 156

vk @Nov12 2:30 #150

I don't think this holds water. What I see is a clear pattern of decline:

You are waaay too optimistic.

Republicans Bush Sr. and GWBush each sent hundreds of thousands of troops into battle.

Democrats Clinton and Obama conducted small and/or covert wars.

Trump hasn't started a "major war" but he has laid the groundwork for it with his:


It is simply wishful thinking to expect that there will not be a war (probably major war) during a Trump second term.

Biden might also take USA to war but Trump's patriotic MAGA nationalists would cheer a war if Trump is President.

!!

[Nov 10, 2020] Biden relies on foreign policy advisors from the Obama administration. Yhey are members of the "Washington blob" and will provide continuity with past policies rooted in militarism and other abuses of power

Nov 10, 2020 | dissidentvoice.org

During his election campaign, Biden has relied on foreign policy advisors from past administrations, particularly the Obama administration, and seems to be considering some of them for top cabinet posts. For the most part, they are members of the "Washington blob" who represent a dangerous continuity with past policies rooted in militarism and other abuses of power.

These include interventions in Libya and Syria, support for the Saudi war in Yemen, drone warfare, indefinite detention without trial at Guantanamo, prosecutions of whistleblowers and whitewashing torture. Some of these people have also cashed in on their government contacts to make hefty salaries in consulting firms and other private sector ventures that feed off government contracts.

– As former Deputy Secretary of State and Deputy National Security Advisor to Obama, Tony Blinken played a leading role in all Obama's aggressive policies. Then he co-founded WestExec Advisors to profit from negotiating contracts between corporations and the Pentagon, including one for Google to develop Artificial Intelligence technology for drone targeting, which was only stopped by a rebellion among outraged Google employees.

– Since the Clinton administration, Michele Flournoy has been a principal architect of the U.S.'s illegal, imperialist doctrine of global war and military occupation. As Obama's Undersecretary of Defense for Policy, she helped to engineer his escalation of the war in Afghanistan and interventions in Libya and Syria. Between jobs at the Pentagon, she has worked the infamous revolving door to consult for firms seeking Pentagon contracts, to co-found a military-industrial think tank called the Center for a New American Security (CNAS), and now to join Tony Blinken at WestExec Advisors.

Nicholas Burns was U.S. Ambassador to NATO during the U.S. invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq. Since 2008, he has worked for former Defense Secretary William Cohen's lobbying firm The Cohen Group, which is a major global lobbyist for the U.S. arms industry. Burns is a hawk on Russia and China and has condemned NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden as a "traitor."

– As a legal adviser to Obama and the State Department and then as Deputy CIA Director and Deputy National Security Advisor, Avril Haines provided legal cover and worked closely with Obama and CIA Director John Brennan on Obama's tenfold expansion of drone killings.

Samantha Power served under Obama as UN Ambassador and Human Rights Director at the National Security Council. She supported U.S. interventions in Libya and Syria, as well as the Saudi-led war on Yemen . And despite her human rights portfolio, she never spoke out against Israeli attacks on Gaza that happened under her tenure or Obama's dramatic use of drones that left hundreds of civilians dead.

– Former Hillary Clinton aide Jake Sullivan played a leading role in unleashing U.S. covert and proxy wars in Libya and Syria .

– As UN Ambassador in Obama's first term, Susan Rice obtained UN cover for his disastrous intervention in Libya. As National Security Advisor in Obama's second term, Rice also defended Israel's savage bombardment of Gaza in 2014, bragged about the U.S. "crippling sanctions" on Iran and North Korea, and supported an aggressive stance toward Russia and China.

A foreign policy team led by such individuals will only perpetuate the endless wars, Pentagon overreach and CIA-misled chaos that we -- and the world -- have endured for the past two decades of the War on Terror.

Making diplomacy "the premier tool of our global engagement."

Biden will take office amid some of the greatest challenges the human race has ever faced -- from extreme inequality, debt and poverty caused by neoliberalism , to intractable wars and the existential danger of nuclear war, to the climate crisis, mass extinction and the Covid-19 pandemic.

These problems won't be solved by the same people, and the same mindsets, that got us into these predicaments. When it comes to foreign policy, there is a desperate need for personnel and policies rooted in an understanding that the greatest dangers we face are problems that affect the whole world, and that they can only be solved by genuine international collaboration, not by conflict or coercion.

During the campaign, Joe Biden's website declared, "As president, Biden will elevate diplomacy as the premier tool of our global engagement. He will rebuild a modern, agile U.S. Department of State -- investing in and re-empowering the finest diplomatic corps in the world and leveraging the full talent and richness of America's diversity."

This implies that Biden's foreign policy must be managed primarily by the State Department, not the Pentagon. The Cold War and American post-Cold War triumphalism led to a reversal of these roles, with the Pentagon and CIA taking the lead and the State Department trailing behind them (with only 5% of their budget), trying to clean up the mess and restore a veneer of order to countries destroyed by American bombs or destabilized by U.S. sanctions , coups and death squads .

In the Trump era, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo reduced the State Department to little more than a sales team for the military-industrial complex to ink lucrative arms deals with India, Taiwan , Saudi Arabia, the UAE and countries around the world.

What we need is a foreign policy led by a State Department that resolves differences with our neighbors through diplomacy and negotiations, as international law in fact requires , and a Department of Defense that defends the United States and deters international aggression against us, instead of threatening and committing aggression against our neighbors around the world.

As the saying goes, "personnel is policy," so whomever Biden picks for top foreign policy posts will be key in shaping its direction. While our personal preferences would be to put top foreign policy positions in the hands of people who have spent their lives actively pursuing peace and opposing U.S. military aggression, that's just not in the cards with this middle-of-the-road Biden administration.

But there are appointments Biden could make to give his foreign policy the emphasis on diplomacy and negotiation that he says he wants. These are American diplomats who have successfully negotiated important international agreements, warned U.S. leaders of the dangers of aggressive militarism and developed valuable expertise in critical areas like arms control.

William Burns was Deputy Secretary of State under Obama, the # 2 position at the State Department, and he is now the director of the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace. As Under Secretary for Near Eastern Affairs in 2002, Burns gave Secretary of State Powell a prescient and detailed but unheeded warning that the invasion of Iraq could "unravel" and create a "perfect storm" for American interests. Burns also served as U.S. Ambassador to Jordan and then Russia.

Wendy Sherman was Obama's Undersecretary of State for Political Affairs, the # 4 position at the State Department, and was briefly Acting Deputy Secretary of State after Burns retired. Sherman was the lead negotiator for both the1994 Framework Agreement with North Korea and the negotiations with Iran that led to the Iran nuclear agreement in 2015. This is surely the kind of experience Biden needs in senior positions if he is serious about reinvigorating American diplomacy.

Tom Countryman is currently the Chair of the Arms Control Association . In the Obama administration, Countryman served as Undersecretary of State for International Security Affairs, Assistant Secretary of State for International Security and Nonproliferation, and Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary for Political-Military Affairs. He also served at U.S. embassies in Belgrade, Cairo, Rome and Athens, and as foreign policy advisor to the Commandant of the U.S. Marine Corps. Countryman's expertise could be critical in reducing or even removing the danger of nuclear war. It would also please the progressive wing of the Democratic Party, since Tom supported Senator Bernie Sanders for president.

In addition to these professional diplomats, there are also Members of Congress who have expertise in foreign policy and could play important roles in a Biden foreign policy team. One is Representative Ro Khanna , who has been a champion of ending U.S. support for the war in Yemen, resolving the conflict with North Korea and reclaiming Congress's constitutional authority over the use of military force.

Another is Representative Karen Bass , who is the chair of the Congressional Black Caucus and also of the Foreign Affairs Subcommittee on Africa, Global Health, Human Rights, and International Organizations .

If the Republicans hold their majority in the Senate, it will be harder to get appointments confirmed than if the Democrats win the two Georgia seats that are headed for run-offs , or than if they had run more progressive campaigns in Iowa, Maine or North Carolina and won at least one of those seats. But this will be a long two years if we let Joe Biden take cover behind Mitch McConnell on critical appointments, policies and legislation. Biden's initial cabinet appointments will be an early test of whether Biden will be the consummate insider or whether he is willing to fight for real solutions to our country's most serious problems.

Conclusion

U.S. cabinet positions are positions of power that can drastically affect the lives of millions of Americans and billions of our neighbors overseas. If Biden is surrounded by people who, against all the evidence of past decades, still believe in the illegal threat and use of military force as key foundations of American foreign policy, then the international cooperation the whole world so desperately needs will be undermined by four more years of war, hostility and international tensions, and our most serious problems will remain unresolved.

That's why we must vigorously advocate for a team that would put an end to the normalization of war and make diplomatic engagement in the pursuit of international peace and cooperation our number one foreign policy priority.

Whomever President-elect Biden chooses to be part of his foreign policy team, he -- and they -- will be pushed by people beyond the White House fence who are calling for demilitarization, including cuts in military spending, and for reinvestment in our country's peaceful economic development.

It will be our job to hold President Biden and his team accountable whenever they fail to turn the page on war and militarism, and to keep pushing them to build friendly relations with all our neighbors on this small planet that we share.

Facebook Twitter Reddit Email Medea Benjamin is cofounder of CODEPINK for Peace , and author of several books, including Inside Iran: The Real History and Politics of the Islamic Republic of Iran . Nicolas J. S. Davies is an independent journalist, a researcher with CODEPINK and the author of Blood On Our Hands: the American Invasion and Destruction of Iraq . Read other articles by Medea Benjamin and Nicolas J. S. Davies .

This article was posted on Monday, November 9th, 2020 at 4:28pm and is filed under Joe Biden , Militarism , Neoliberalism .

[Nov 10, 2020] Biden has a long history of being deeply culpable in human rights abuses

Nov 10, 2020 | www.counterpunch.org

Biden has a long history of being deeply culpable in human rights abuses. Our instinct may be to jubilantly proclaim that the suffering for vulnerable population will now end, but that wouldn't be the case for, say, civilians in war zones. Biden's decision to actively advocate for the disastrous war on Iraq and the crime bill, which imprisoned millions of African-Americans, are rightly notorious.

Biden certainly also did not embolden Obama's more peaceful and internationalist inclinations, which he demonstrated in his speech to the Muslim world and opposition to the Iraq war, when he served as his vice-president. As the Guardian [2] reported about 2016, the last year of the Obama administration, "the ( ) administration dropped at least 26,171 bombs. This means that every day last year, the US military blasted combatants or civilians overseas with 72 bombs; that's three bombs every hour, 24 hours a day." Under Obama/Biden, ten times more drone strikes were authorized than under Bush, and the US joined the coalition to bomb Yemen, which has exacerbated a famine that had killed 84.701 by November 2018.[3]

Biden has never seriously reflected on the lives there were wrecked and the traumas that were imposed during the post-9/11 wars, and there is no sign that he will deescalate US foreign policy in 2021. But there is hope: In opposition to Trump, movements to bolster domestic human rights in the US have been invigorated. The heroes of the last four years – the Dreamers, as well as the BLM, anti-detention and Sanders activists – will not go away. Can their call for moral transformation take on global dimensions?

None of our doubts about Biden should diminish our recognition of the racist horrors of the Trump years. Some of his supporters claim that "Trump never started a war", and submit this statement as proof that Trump is less damaging to the world than a centrist Democrat only tell (or know) half the truth. The trend in US foreign policy has been to drop more and more bombs since 09/11 – and the Trump administration, which was packed with notorious Islamophobes, represented the sad, recent pinnacle of a trendline that will hopefully not be continued under the Biden administration. In Afghanistan, warplanes dropped 7,423 bombs and other munitions in 2019, which was the highest number since the Pentagon began tracking how many bombs it drops in 2006.[4] Consequently the US, and its allied Afghani forces, killed more than the Taliban within 2019.[5] Trump would have certainly further undermined international humanitarian law in war zones. After all, he pardoned a war criminal as an intentional symbolical gesture,[6] and advocated for bombing the families of terror suspects, which is, of course, a crime per the Geneva Convention.

If the past years have shown anything, it is how important it is to limit the war powers of presidents no matter who is in office. The next in line usually turned out to be worse in important respects when it comes to questions of war and peace. The only antidote is holding Biden accountable on foreign policy, starting today.

[Nov 10, 2020] NATO Declares Biden White House Will Finally Confront -Assertive Russia- -

Nov 10, 2020 | www.zerohedge.com

NATO Declares Biden White House Will Finally Confront "Assertive Russia"


by Tyler Durden Tue, 11/10/2020 - 04:15 Twitter Facebook Reddit Email Print

With Joe Biden declared president-elect by a chorus of major networks in unison on Saturday, the same mainstream media has suddenly dropped any notion of 'Russian interference' in the election which for years had received wall to wall coverage.

Over the weekend an MSNBC host went so far as to declare without evidence "This might be the cleanest election we have ever had." And conveniently apart from the 'sudden' unprecedented leap in vaccine development and with markets soaring on the news, the foreign policy "wins" are conveniently pouring in even before Biden enters the White House on January 20.

As a case in point NATO's official message of congratulations to Joe Biden and Kamala Harris underscored that a Biden White House will finally be able to confront "assertive Russia" according to a statement by Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg.

Jens Stoltenberg via EPA

"I warmly welcome the election of Joe Biden as the next President of the United States. I know Mr. Biden as a strong supporter of NATO and the transatlantic relationship," Stoltenberg's written statement began .

And here's where the NATO chief referenced "assertive Russia" and the "rise of China":

"We need this collective strength to deal with the many challenges we face, including a more assertive Russia, international terrorism, cyber and missile threats, and a shift in the global balance of power with the rise of China," Stoltenberg stated .

The suggestion is of course that Trump didn't exercise enough "strength" - though it seems hard to make this argument especially in the case of China.

And it's further long been pointed out that US-Russia relations have actually been at a low point in recent history under Trump , given the Trump administration withdrawal from key weapons treaties like the 1987 Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty, Open Skies, and with New START set to expire early next year.

There's also the attempts to block completion of the Nord Stream 2 Russia to Germany gas pipeline, which has included targeted sanctions against Western companies helping to construct it. The Trump State Department has also done much to open up weapons sales to Ukraine.

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Recall too that not only has Trump throughout his presidency demanded European allies do more in terms of shouldering their fair share of the burden of defense spending for which they are "delinquent", but has repeatedly called the Cold War era alliance "obsolete" and at some points even hinted the US could withdraw.

But his ultimate purpose in this appeared geared toward strengthening the organization into a true alliance and not merely Washington carrying the burden of major spending.

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We detailed last month that top NATO officials appeared to be openly rooting for a Biden victory following four years of Trump being a thorn in the side of Brussels. This is true enough, but in terms of Russia one could easily argue Trump has been a greater hawk in terms of ignoring European demands that key nuclear and weapons treaties be extended . 07564111 , 5 hours ago

ROFL .. idiot Stoltenberg thinks he is immortal.

cankles' server , 3 hours ago

Wasn't NATO literally designed for war?

teutonicate , 3 hours ago

NATO Declares Biden White House Will Finally Confront "Assertive Russia"

"the foreign policy "wins" are conveniently pouring in even before Biden enters the White House on January 20."

The only reason any foreign power would prefer to work with Biden is that they know he is a wimp, that he is corrupt and can be bought (as proven by his history with China) and that for he will not look out for American interests (as opposed to theirs).

You see, Democrats define anything that takes down America as a win - including there own contrived victories that will never materialize.

www.germanica.org

Roacheforque , 4 hours ago

Biden would sit in his underwear and do what he's told to do, like any proper corpse. That's why the dead (and blue-bots) voted for him.

LevelHeadedMan , 4 hours ago

As we say in Russia;

Собака лает, а караван идёт.

The dog barks, yet the caravan moves on.

It means we will keep assembling more and more nukes while this idiot continues bleating.

SMC , 3 hours ago

You have a lot of support from normal, productive Americans.

LevelHeadedMan , 3 hours ago

Thank you. We like regular Americans too!

richard_engineer , 1 hour ago

As an American, I think Russia has been legitimate in its attempts at peace while USA has been continuously trying to provoke Russia. I think that the bolsheviks you kicked out are trying to get revenge and use America as their pawn.

Seriously man, I'm legitimately afraid that Russia would launch a pre-emptive attack if further cornered by USA & NATO. I live in Sacramento, CA - do you think this city would be targeted by nuke?

I imagine Russia would focus on the defensive nukes placed in Europe first, and then likely to target many large cities in USA & Europe. Russia has a lot of nukes so I imagine it would launch full-scale attack to completely disable the opponent from future attack.

EuroPox , 5 hours ago

So after Trump is sworn in on 20th January, NATO is finished. There is no way back from this.

No1uNo , 5 hours ago

I support the sentiment, my fear is they've mobilised so much resources to constantly attack Trump, I don't see those attacks ending only escalating. If you can see a way that the CFR, Trilateral Commission, Atlantic Council, Soros NGO's etc all get disbanded and some serious jail time thrown at them - then yes their pet projects will suffer. Without that Trump needs to be very careful outside of the White House.

EuroPox , 5 hours ago

Trump could not take down the DS until everyone could see what was happening. The last 4 years have been all about this election - this is how people will finally SEE what has been happening. There never were going to any arrests in the first term. Now there will be 4 years to take down the DS... and another 4 years after that. No need to rush, one step at a time will get us there.

Thurmonster , 3 hours ago

Riiiight.

philipat , 5 hours ago

LOL. And not a single example provided of Russia's "assertive" behavior towards Europe. And I for one can't think of ANY yet I can think of many provocations against Russia by NATO. And, of course, if NATO provokes Russia too hard and war does break out, Europe will be on the front line and could, if Russia so wished, be reduced to rubble in short order. I can't imagine why the Europeans would want to do this to themselves but there we have it. At least it would mark the end of the awful EU!

East Indian , 5 hours ago

Russia has stealthily crawled to place itself just next to NATO's boundaries! Isn't enough?

acementhead , 5 hours ago

And not a single example provided of Russia's "assertive" behavior towards Europe.

Come on man They're (Russia) building a pipeline to sell gas to Germany. How dare they, that gas belongs to the US oligarchs.

xpxhxoxexnxixx , 1 hour ago

Isnt it funny that the MSM and Dems are completely fine glossing over the fact that half the country voted against Biden. It's as if they think we're all united simply because of the outcome. It's no wonder why we have the country we do, and why the dems continue to squeak by year after year. There is no desire for them to understand the American people- they simply figure 'we'll get just enough votes to do what we want' 100% of time. There is no desire for them to actually want to work with others to improve the country. And year after year we believe it simply in the 'name of democracy'- as if that actually means anything. So Trump is the red flag commie garbage man to them, and literally anyone else is freedom. If you ever see the MSM or social media start to talk about why we have a literal divide in this country, I think i'll call it quits here on Earth. But it'll never happen.

GoldenDebt , 5 hours ago

These evil F-ers want nuclear war. Trump did it right. I suspect Trump was going to forge a new peace, demonrats didnt want that. They want to kill us all with a nuke war. Democrats are pure evil.

Jerzeel , 5 hours ago

More like the usual gang want to beat up again on some **** hole country.

Fireman , 5 hours ago

NATO, North Amerikan Terror Organ, that limp appendage dangling from the Pedophile Politburo in Natostan capital of USSA's flaccid vassal Brussels, seat of the infamous albeit collapsing EUSSR wants to be the global gangster sidekick of the Pentacon thugs but just doesn't want to pay to play. Will the Germans get suckered for a third time into a global war for their anglozionazi bankster masters and the Washing town thugocracy? Nah...they finally seem to have figured it and STASI agent "Erika" out as the I$I$ "backed" Saudi Mercan IOU petroscrip toilet paper dollah gets flushed from the global Ponzi sewer of the Potemkin Village (idiot) Mercan "economy" of slaughter for the profit of the zero 1%.

Meanwhile the Dark Winter of financial collapse is upon US, on both sides of the Atlanticist swamp, as the detritus of USSA'S Middle East judaic wars rapes, decapitates and pillages its way across a seething Europe betrayed by the hag in Berlin and her Soros puppet master. Syria is where the anglozionazi beast and Pentacon Murder Inc. finally bit off more than they could chew in their serial judaic wars of terror and the rest of humanity sees it for what it is. All the emasculated pedophile pawns in Natostan huff and puff at Mr. Bear's doorstep but that is all these Brownstoned cretins will ever do. It is all over bar the inevitable bankrupt collapse of €urolandia and the long awaited civil war reloaded in Slumville, USSA. Bismarck was right more than a century ago, the only future Germany has and Urupp by default is in the warm embrace of Mr. Bear and his vast supply of energy and resources as USSA vainly squeezes gas from the "shale miracle" BS and hubris bloated turds in the stinking Washing town swamp as the brand new cadaver in chief, Creepy Joe and his Camel get ready to torch Slumville in the mother of all dumpster fires.

Onward to Leningrad with Onkel Adolf and the dancing fool of Natostan.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a3m0oUpRf3Q

Patmos , 4 hours ago

We need this collective strength to deal with the many challenges we face, including a more assertive Russia...

Which is code for:

The EU is poorly run and incredibly weak, having to rely on other nations for resources and subsidies, so please help us because the glory of Europe has pretty much completely faded. -signed, little bitch Jens

Is-Be , 4 hours ago

"Mr. Gorbechov, you have my word that we will not advance one inch towards Russia."

They are not worthy of their ancestors. Real Northman are bound by their oaths.

Even Loki could not break his.

NorwegianKing , 5 hours ago

Jens Stoltenberg is a Quisling.

Alice-the-dog , 2 hours ago

So the extreme aggression of NATO is going to be used to attack the nonexistent Russian aggression?

Fabelhaft , 1 hour ago

The plan ... is to minimize Putin and or his philosophy of 'Russian resources for Russia', to the point that the Russian people will vote his method out and gladly surrender control of their goods to the West. Then, be good servile Russians. Oh, and another thing, a big thing, the West hates Russia's Cross. The Cross has to go, also.

Somewhat Unisex , 4 hours ago

The whole Russia tensions are nauseating.

Russia has a GDP similar to South Korea.

But the MIC always needs a boogeyman I suppose.

libfrog88 , 3 hours ago

NATO is so full of ****. They are the ones provoking Russia all the time. They need to justify their worthless existence and it is costing far too much.

nanook007 , 4 hours ago

Yes of course......parasite globalist warmongers love the democrat pedophile hair sniffer.

overmedicatedundersexed , 5 hours ago

"War is Peace.".some democrat leftist.

Stringer99 , 5 hours ago

Nato like many other organisations needs a threat, real or imaginary to exist. The US spends more on weapon systems than the next 16 countries combined. Their usual reason is things like 9/11. The same forces behind 9/11 include the same nato puppet masters and connected think tanks who also profit from Nato funding. Its just another business model involving trillions of dollars funded by taxpayers. Whether its the arms industry or big pharma, fear is their currency of control.

TheySayIAmOkay , 4 hours ago

Great. When does ISIS funding kick back into full gear?

Bobby Farrell Can Dance , 4 hours ago

These Northern Atlantic Terrorists Orcs took out 2 secular leaders (Qaddafi, Saddam) and tried taking out a third (Assad), and they wonder why radical Islam is filling in the void? How the hell are these sub humans ever in charge of making such decisions? NATO HQ should be wiped off the map.

They also made the refugee problem worse.

Haboob , 5 hours ago

Russia is no longer the USSR so why "confront" them.

Simpson , 5 hours ago

Resource rich country.

SadhakaPadma , 5 hours ago

its not case...you cant milk taxpayers for 750 bilions usd a year withouth enemies and threat...so Military industry created terrorists camps and as it failed..now they wanna encyrcle china and russia and spread ******** about them...danger is if you provoke around these borders the war might come even as accident as Putin warned..its all only softwares...

SadhakaPadma , 5 hours ago

DESPITE the all Trump faults he gave humanity four more years...HIlary would go nuclear...same apply with Biden.

dog breath , 5 hours ago

Gaslighting is strong with EU. Trump wants NATO military spending to be 2% of GDP. Germany wants gas pipeline with Russia. This is direct contradiction to this NATO ******* propaganda.

minoas , 1 hour ago

They won't be happy until they kill us all in a nuclear war. Russia is not a threat to Europe. China does not send it's troops around the world overthrowing governments. Encircled by US bases, it has built a small island off it's coast to protect it's seas lanes while we have nearly a thousand military installations around the globe if we count our covert ones. Russia and China is athreat to world hegemony by the US. That is their crime

Tom Angle , 1 hour ago

Who sponsored a Neo-Nazi coupe on the Russian border? Who continually holds war games on the Russian border? Who does Russian natural gas keep who warm in the winter? Who creates and sponsors terrorists to make way for a pipeline to Europe? Who builds bio labs on Russian borders? So who is assertive?

MoreFreedom , 2 hours ago

Translation: Stoltenberg says he's glad Biden is president because that means they'll all pocket more US taxpayer money, and the US taxpayer is the sheep. There's money to be made in NATO deals and deployments, provided the US pays for it.

Theremustbeanotherway , 2 hours ago

In the UK, our politicians are corrupt beyond redemption.

Our legal system is becoming corrupt beyond redemption.

The current senior personnel in our armed forces are pansies and incapable of defending our nation and only capable of attacking the indigenous population.

The current senior personnel in our police forces are bent out of shape determined to victimise the indigenous population.

We are still under the cosh of the Bolsheviks in Europe intent on promoting war.

Most of the population of the UK are incapable of seeing through the BS and lies - I now know what it is like to be held hostage in an asylum!!

Old Captain Hindsight , 5 hours ago

NATO outing themselves as enemies of the people?

It is funny watching all of these idiots jump the gun.

jnojr , 41 minutes ago

Maybe Joe Biden can get a Nobel Peace Prize even faster than Barack Obama did?

Promethus , 1 hour ago

I started in the US military during the cold War. It is so sad that people like me no longer recognize this country and look to Russia as a bulwark of Christianity and western civilization.

Stay strong Russia. The USA and western Europe have abandoned God and now are reaping what they sewed..

[Nov 10, 2020] Biden -- A War Cabinet

Nov 10, 2020 | www.counterpunch.org

Nov 2, 2020

"Let's bring decency and integrity back to the White House." I can't count the number of times I have heard and read this phrase uttered by U.S. expats here in Paris, France. As one of many American expats living here, of course I share in the desire for an end to a Donald Trump presidency. But at what cost? And will a Biden presidency -- which promises a return to "normalcy" -- really merit the sigh of relief that so many think it will? Below I summarise some of the most troubling information I have uncovered about some of the most likely foreign policy picks for key positions in a Biden cabinet.

Susan Rice for Secretary of State

Susan Rice, who was also reportedly being considered for the role of Biden's Vice President, served as United States Ambassador to the United Nations and as National Security Advisor, both under the Obama administration.

While Benghazi has been the focus of much criticism of Rice, she has received virtually no scrutiny for her backing of the invasion of Iraq and claiming that there were WMDs there. Some of her statements:

"I think he [then Secretary of State Colin Powell] has proved that Iraq has these weapons and is hiding them, and I don't think many informed people doubted that." (NPR, Feb. 6, 2003)

"It's clear that Iraq poses a major threat. It's clear that its weapons of mass destruction need to be dealt with forcefully, and that's the path we're on. I think the question becomes whether we can keep the diplomatic balls in the air and not drop any, even as we move forward, as we must, on the military side." (NPR, Dec. 20, 2002)

"I think the United States government has been clear since the first Bush administration about the threat that Iraq and Saddam Hussein poses. The United States policy has been regime change for many, many years, going well back into the Clinton administration. So it's a question of timing and tactics. We do not necessarily need a further Council resolution before we can enforce this and previous resolutions." (NPR, Nov. 11, 2002; requests for audio of Rice's statements on NPR were declined by the publicly funded network.)

She has also been criticised extensively for her record on the African continent, which judging by the following quote at the beginning of the 1994 Rwandan genocide seems to have been to adopt a "laissez faire" attitude : "If we use the word 'genocide' and are seen as doing nothing, what will be the effect on the November [congressional] election?"

Susan Rice's past rhetoric also includes choice generous words for African dictators . One great example is former prime minister of Ethiopia, Meles Zenawi, a man who ordered security services to open fire on protestors during its controversial 2005 election, has a track record of imprisoning journalists , used food aid as a political tool and stole land in south Ethiopia. In her speech at his funeral, Susan Rice described him as "brilliant" and a "close friend ".

Although Rice has often been portrayed as someone who is anti-Israel , her mild criticisms pale in comparison to her staunch record and discourse on the Israeli-Palestinian issue.

In a speech given at the AIPAC Synagogue Initiative Lunch back in 2012, Rice boasted about vetoing a UN resolution that would deem Israeli settlements on occupied Palsestinian land as illegal, and further characterized the Goldstone Report as "flawed" and "insisted on Israel's right to defend itself and maintained that Israel's democratic institutions could credibly investigate any possible abuses." Her position has changed little since then, as recently as 2016, she proclaimed that "Israel's security isn't a Democratic interest or a Republican interest -- it's an enduring American interest."

Tony Blinken for National Security Adviser

Tony Blinken is also an old member of the Obama administration, having served first as VP Biden's National Security Advisor from 2009 to 2013, Deputy National Security Advisor from 2013 to 2015 and then as United States Deputy Secretary of State from 2015 to 2017.

Blinken had immense influence over Biden in his role as Deputy National Security Advisor, helping formulate Biden's approach and support for the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

"For Biden ", he argued , "and for a number of others who voted for the resolution, it was a vote for tough diplomacy." He added "It is more likely that diplomacy will succeed, if the other side knows military action is possible."

The two of them were responsible for delivering on Obama's campaign promise to get American troops out of Iraq, a process so oversimplified and poorly handled that it led to even more chaos than the initial occupation and insurgency.

Blinken seems to be of the view that it is upto the US, and only the US, to take charge of world affairs : "On leadership, whether we like it or not, the world just doesn't organize itself. And until this [Trump] administration, the U.S. had played a lead role in doing a lot of that organizing, helping to write the rules, to shape the norms and animate the institutions that govern relations among nations. When we're not engaged, when we don't lead, then one or two things is likely to happen. Either some other country tries to take our place – but probably not in a way that advances our interests or values – or no one does. And then you get chaos or a vacuum filled by bad things before it's filled by good things. Either way, that's bad for us."

Blinken also appears to be steering Biden's pro-Israel agenda, recently stating that Biden "would not tie military assistance to Israel to any political decisions that it makes, period, full stop." which includes an all out rejection of BDS , the Boycott, Divestment & Sanctions Movement against Israel's occupation of Palestine.

Michèle Flournoy for Secretary of Defence

Michele Flournoy was Under Secretary of Defense for Policy from 2009 to 2012 in the Obama administration under Secretaries Robert Gates and Leon Panetta.

Flournoy, in writing the Quadrennial Defense Review during her time as Assistant Secretary of Defense for Strategy under President Clinton, has paved the way for the U.S.'s endless and costly wars which prevent us from investing in life saving and necessary programmes like Medicare for All and the Green New Deal. It has effectively granted the US permission to no longer be bound by the UN Charter's prohibition against the threat or use of military force. It declared that, "when the interests at stake are vital, we should do whatever it takes to defend them, including, when necessary, the unilateral use of military power."

While working at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS), a "Top Defense and National Security Think Tank" based in Washington D.C., in June 2002, as the Bush administration was threatening aggression towards Iraq, she declared , that the United States would "need to strike preemptively before a crisis erupts to destroy an adversary's weapons stockpile" before it "could erect defenses to protect those weapons, or simply disperse them." She continued along this path even in 2009, after the Bush administration, in a speech for the CSIS : "The second key challenge I want to highlight is the proliferation – continued proliferation of nuclear weapons and other weapons of mass destruction, as these also pose increasing threats to our security. We have to respond to states such as Iran, North Korea, who are seeking to develop nuclear weapons technologies, and in a globalized world there is also an increased risk that non-state actors will find ways to obtain these materials or weapons."

It is extremely important to note that Flournoy and Blinken co-founded the strategic consulting firm, WestExec Advisors, where the two use their large database of governmental, military, venture capitalists and corporate leader contacts to help companies win big Pentagon contracts. One such client being Jigsaw, a technology incubator created by Google that describes itself on its website as "a unit within Google that forecasts and confronts emerging threats, creating future-defining research and technology to keep our world safer." Their partnership on the AI initiative entitled Project Maven led to a rebellion by Google workers who opposed their technology being used by military and police operations.

Furthermore, Flournoy and Blinken, in their jobs at WestExec Advisors, co-chaired the biannual meeting of the liberal organization Foreign Policy for America. Over 50 representatives of national-security groups were in attendance. Most of the attendees supported "ask(ing) Congress to halt U.S. military involvement in the (Yemen) conflict." Flournoy did not. She said that the weapons should be sold under certain conditions and that Saudi Arabia needed these advanced patriot missiles to defend itself.

Conclusion

If a return to "normalcy" means having the same old politicians that are responsible for endless wars, that work for the corporate elite, that lack the courage to implement real structural change required for major issues such as healthcare and the environment, then a call for "normalcy" is nothing more than a call to return to the same deprived conditions that led to our current crisis. Such a return with amplified conditions and circumstances, could set the stage for the return of an administration with dangers that could possibly even exceed those posed by the current one in terms of launching new wars.

Mariamne Everett is an intern at the Institute for Public Accuracy currently living in France.

[Nov 10, 2020] The war is over Global Capitalism triumphs! -- RT Op-ed

Nov 10, 2020 | www.rt.com

This article was originally published by Consent Factory .

By C. J. Hopkins , award-winning American playwright, novelist and political satirist based in Berlin. His dystopian novel, ' Zone 23 ', is published by Snoggsworthy, Swaine & Cormorant. His essays and other works can be found at, and he can be reached via, cjhopkins.com or consentfactory.org . OK, so, that was not cool. For one terrifying moment there, it actually looked like GloboCap was going to let Russian-Asset Hitler win.

Hour after hour on election night, states on the map kept turning red, or pink, or some distinctly non-blue color. Wisconsin Michigan Georgia Florida. It could not be happening, and yet it was. What other explanation was there? The Russians were stealing the election again!

But, of course, GloboCap was just playing with us. They're a bunch of practical jokers, those GloboCap guys. Naturally, they couldn't resist the chance to wind us up just one more time.

Seriously, though, while I enjoy a good prank, I still have a number of liberal friends, many of whom were on the verge of suffering major heart attacks as they breathlessly waited for the corporate media to confirm that they had successfully voted a literal dictator out of power. (A few of them suffer from IBS or other gastrointestinal disorders, so, in light of the current toilet-paper shortage caused by the Return of the Apocalyptic Plague, toying with them like that was especially cruel.)

But, whatever. That's water under the bridge. The good news is, the nightmare is over! Literal Hitler and his underground army of Russia-loving white supremacists have been vanquished! Decency has been restored! Globalization has risen from the dead!

... ... ..

Meanwhile, the GloboCap propaganda has reached some new post-Orwellian level. After four long years of "RUSSIA HACKED THE ELECTION!" now, suddenly, "THERE IS NO SUCH THING AS ELECTION FRAUD IN THE USA!"

That's right, once again, millions of liberals, like that scene in ' 1984' where the Party switches official enemies right in the middle of the Hate-Week speech, have been ordered to radically reverse their "reality," and hysterically deny the existence of the very thing they have been hysterically alleging for four solid years and they are actually doing it!

... ... ///

Marian1637 7 hours ago

I can not comprehend that democrats do not blame Putin for Biden winning!

Reilly 3 hours ago

Very funny, bravo! Nothing like a bit of slapstick, with a dose of reality also in the middle of a waking nightmare about to happen. ;))

DeoGratias 4 hours ago

One correction : it is not GloboCap it is GloboComs. The objective of communism is to create two classes of a society : rulers and workers. Thus GloboCaps are GloboComs.

Winter7Mute 5 hours ago

A reliable way to make people believe in falsehoods is frequent repetition, because familiarity is not easily distinguished from truth. Authoritarian institutions and marketers have always known this fact. I'm not even sure if most journalists or reporters know what their even talking about, when writing these articles.

Vidarr Kerr 5 hours ago

There is such a thing as Too Much Sarcasm.

EarthBotV2 Vidarr Kerr 4 hours ago

I disagree. The liberazi "thinks" with the gut -- as in "What does your gut tell you?"...

[Nov 09, 2020] Joe Biden is no empty sheet, may well return to warmongering polices waged by US before 2016 former OSCE vice-presiden

Nov 09, 2020 | www.rt.com

There's a 'good chance' that the US will return to the policy of foreign wars under Joe Biden, which will make its reconciliation with the EU impossible, Willy Wimmer, former vice-president of the OSCE, warned.

The main reasons why the Americans voted for Donald Trump four years ago were their tiredness of constant wars waged by their country and collapsing economy and infrastructure in the US, Wimmer told RT.

Trump has kept his promise and didn't start any new foreign conflict, but that may well change if a member of the Democratic Party is in the White House, former Vice President of the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) Parliamentary Assembly said.

Joe Biden isn't an empty white sheet – he represents the Democratic Party, who in the 1990s destroyed the Charter of the UN.

The German political veteran recalled the US-led NATO bombing of Yugoslavia under Democratic President, Bill Clinton, in 1999. He also pointed out that "in the presidency of [Barack] Obama, Biden was Vice President and he was in absolute accordance with Obama's drone wars and the wars in the Middle East, therefore there's a good chance that Joe Biden continues in the same way as the Democratic Party did it in the 1990s and under Obama" before 2016.

"And going back to before 2016 means going back to war" for the US, Wimmer argued.

ALSO ON RT.COM Biden administration will find it hard to integrate itself in a world changed by Trump

Relations between Washington and Brussels have deteriorated under Trump over his demands for the EU nations to make larger financial contributions to NATO as well as political and economic pressure on the block to stop dealing with Russia and China.

Hopes that things would improve under Biden will be dashed, "as long as the US and NATO don't return to the Charter of the UN," the 77-year-old, who also served as State Secretary to Germany's Defense Minister, said.

However, he pointed out that it remains a question if the current US economy, which was heavily hit by the coronavirus, would even allow Biden to return to the aggressive policy, which the Democrats used to pursue.

Unlike German Chancellor, Angela Merkel, who already congratulated Biden over beating incumbent Trump in the US presidential election, Wimmer believes that others "should be very-very careful with congratulations."

ALSO ON RT.COM European leaders congratulate Joe Biden, after media count declares him victorious in US presidential election

The Democratic candidate declared himself the winner on Saturday after several major television networks projected that he was on a path to take more than 270 electoral votes needed to win the presidency after four days of tense vote counts in several battleground states.

"It's quite unusual that the result of an election is announced by a news agency or a news channel. We're used in all our countries, which belong to the OSCE, that we have Election Committees, who announce results. And this hasn't been done yet in the US," he pointed out, describing the events surrounding the American election as "unbelievable."

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[Nov 08, 2020] After Trump, Throw Out the Old Foreign Policy Establishment, Too - FPIF

Notable quotes:
"... Andrew Bacevich, a TomDispatch regular , is president of the Quincy Institute for Responsible Statecraft . His most recent book is The Age of Illusions: How America Squandered Its Cold War Victory . ..."
Nov 08, 2020 | fpif.org

After Trump, Throw Out the Old Foreign Policy Establishment, Too

Americans can't ignore the world beyond their borders, but the last thing they need is to embark upon a fresh search for distant monsters to destroy.

By Andrew Bacevich , October 28, 2020 . Originally published in TomDispatch .

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The so-called Age of Trump is also an age of instantly forgotten bestselling books, especially ones purporting to provide the inside scoop on what goes on within Donald Trump's haphazard and continuously shifting orbit. With metronomic regularity, such gossipy volumes appear, make a splash, and almost as quickly vanish, leaving a mark no more lasting than a trout breaking the surface in a pond.

Remember when Michael Wolff's Fire and Fury: Inside the Trump White House was all the rage? It's now available in hardcover for $0.99 from online used booksellers. James Comey's Higher Loyalty also sells for a penny less than a buck.

An additional forty-six cents will get you Omarosa Manigault Newman's " insider's account " of her short-lived tenure in that very White House. For the same price, you can acquire Sean Spicer's memoir as Trump's press secretary, Anthony Scaramucci's rendering of his tumultuous 11-day stint as White House communications director, and Corey Lewandowski's " inside story " of the 2016 presidential campaign.

Bibliophiles intent on assembling a complete library of Trumpiana will not have long to wait before the tell-all accounts of John Bolton, Michael Cohen, Mary Trump, and that journalistic amanuensis Bob Woodward will surely be available at similar bargain basement prices.

All that said, even in these dismal times genuinely important books do occasionally make their appearance. My friend and colleague Stephen Wertheim is about to publish one. It's called Tomorrow, the World: The Birth of U.S. Global Supremacy and if you'll forgive me for being direct, you really ought to read it. Let me explain why.

The "Turn"

Wertheim and I are co-founders of the Quincy Institute for Responsible Statecraft , a small Washington, D.C.-based think tank. That Quincy refers to John Quincy Adams who, as secretary of state nearly two centuries ago, warned his fellow citizens against venturing abroad "in search of monsters to destroy."

Were the United States to do so, Adams predicted, its defining trait -- its very essence -- "would insensibly change from liberty to force. " By resorting to force, America "might become the dictatress of the world," he wrote, but "she would be no longer the ruler of her own spirit." While his gendered punchline might rankle contemporary sensibilities, it remains apt.

A privileged man of his times, Adams took it for granted that a WASP male elite was meant to run the country. Women were to occupy their own separate sphere. And while he would eventually become an ardent opponent of slavery, in 1821 race did not rank high on his agenda either. His immediate priority as secretary of state was to situate the young republic globally so that Americans might enjoy both safety and prosperity. That meant avoiding unnecessary trouble. We had already had our revolution. In his view, it wasn't this country's purpose to promote revolution elsewhere or to dictate history's future course.

Adams was to secretaries of state what Tom Brady is to NFL quarterbacks: the Greatest Of All Time. As the consensus GOAT in the estimation of diplomatic historians, he brought to maturity a pragmatic tradition of statecraft originated by a prior generation of New Englanders and various slaveholding Virginians with names like Washington, Jefferson, and Madison. That tradition emphasized opportunistically ruthless expansionism on this continent, avid commercial engagement, and the avoidance of great power rivalries abroad. Adhering to such a template, the United States had, by the beginning of the twentieth century, become the wealthiest, most secure nation on the planet -- at which point Europeans spoiled the party.

The disastrous consequences of one European world war fought between 1914 and 1918 and the onset of a second in 1939 rendered that pragmatic tradition untenable -- so at least a subsequent generation of WASPs concluded. This is where Wertheim takes up the story. Prompted by the German army's lightning victory in the battle of France in May and June 1940, members of that WASP elite set about creating -- and promoting -- an alternative policy paradigm, one he describes as pursuing "dominance in the name of internationalism," with U.S. military supremacy deemed "the prerequisite of a decent world."

The new elite that devised this paradigm did not consist of lawyers from Massachusetts or planters from Virginia. Its key members held tenured positions at Yale and Princeton, wrote columns for leading New York newspapers, staffed Henry Luce's Time-Life press empire, and distributed philanthropic largesse to fund worthy causes (grasping the baton of global primacy being anything but least among them). Most importantly, just about every member of this Eastern establishment cadre was also a member of the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR). As such, they had a direct line to the State Department, which in those days actually played a large role in formulating basic foreign policy.

While Tomorrow, The World is not a long book -- fewer than 200 pages of text -- it is a tour de force . In it, Wertheim describes the new narrative framework that the foreign-policy elite formulated in the months following the fall of France.

He shows how Americans with an antipathy for war now found themselves castigated as "isolationists," a derogatory term created to suggest provincialism or selfishness. Those favoring armed intervention, meanwhile, became "internationalists," a term connoting enlightenment and generosity. Even today, members of the foreign-policy establishment pledge undying fealty to the same narrative framework, which still warns against the bugaboo of "isolationism" that threatens to prevent high-minded policymakers from exercising "global leadership."

Wertheim persuasively describes the "turn" toward militarized globalism engineered from above by that self-selected, unelected crew. Crucially, their efforts achieved success prior to Pearl Harbor. The Japanese attack of December 7, 1941, may have thrust the United States into the ongoing world war, but the essential transformation of policy had already occurred, even if ordinary Americans had yet to be notified as to what it meant. Its future implications -- permanently high levels of military spending, a vast network of foreign bases stretching across the globe, a penchant for armed intervention abroad, a sprawling "national security" apparatus, and a politically subversive arms industry -- would only become apparent in the years ahead.

While Wertheim is not the first to expose isolationism as a carefully constructed myth, he does so with devastating effect. Most of all, he helps his readers understand that "so long as the phantom of isolationism is held to be the most grievous sin, all is permitted."

Contained within that all is a cavalcade of forceful actions and grotesque miscalculations, successes and failures, notable achievements and immense tragedies both during World War II and in the decades that followed. While beyond the scope of Wertheim's book, casting the Cold War as a de facto extension of the war against Nazi Germany, with Soviet dictator Josef Stalin as a stand-in for Adolf Hitler, represented an equally significant triumph for the foreign policy establishment.

At the outset of World War II, ominous changes in the global distribution of power prompted a basic reorientation of U.S. policy. Today, fundamental alterations in the global distribution of power -- did someone say "the rise of China"? -- are once again occurring right before our eyes. Yet the foreign-policy establishment's response is simply to double down.

So, even now, staggering levels of military spending, a vast network of foreign bases, a penchant for armed intervention abroad, a sprawling "national security" apparatus, and a politically subversive arms industry remain the taken-for-granted signatures of U.S. policy. And even now, the establishment employs the specter of isolationism as a convenient mechanism for self-forgiveness and expedient amnesia, as well as a means to enforce discipline.

Frozen Compass

The fall of France was indeed an epic disaster. Yet implicit in Tomorrow, The World is this question: If the disaster that befell Europe in 1940 could prompt the United States to abandon a hitherto successful policy paradigm, then why have the serial disasters befalling the nation in the present century not produced a comparable willingness to reexamine an approach to policy that is obviously failing today?

To pose that question is to posit an equivalence between the French army's sudden collapse in the face of the Wehrmacht's assault and the accumulation of U.S. military disappointments dating from 9/11. From a tactical or operational perspective, many will find such a comparison unpersuasive. After all, the present-day armed forces of the United States have not succumbed to outright defeat, nor is the government of the United States petitioning for a cessation of hostilities as the French authorities did in 1940.

Yet what matters in war are political outcomes. Time and again since 9/11, whether in Afghanistan, Iraq, or lesser theaters of conflict, the United States has failed to achieve the political purposes for which it went to war. From a strategic and political perspective, therefore, the comparison with France is instructive, even if failure need not entail abject surrender.

The French people and other supporters of the 1930s European status quo (including Americans who bothered to pay attention) were counting on that country's soldiers to thwart further Nazi aggression once and for all. Defeat came as a profound shock. Similarly, after the Cold War, most Americans (and various beneficiaries of a supposed Pax Americana ) counted on U.S. troops to maintain an agreeable and orderly global status quo. Instead, the profound shock of 9/11 induced Washington to embark upon what became a series of "endless wars" that U.S. forces proved incapable of bringing to a successful conclusion.

Crucially, however, no reevaluation of U.S. policy comparable to the "turn" that Wertheim describes has occurred.

An exceedingly generous reading of President Trump's promise to put "America First" might credit him with attempting such a turn. In practice, however, his incompetence and inconsistency, not to mention his naked dishonesty, produced a series of bizarre and random zigzags. Threats of " fire and fury " alternated with expressions of high regard for dictators (" we fell in love "). Troop withdrawals were announced and then modified or forgotten. Trump abandoned a global environmental agreement, massively rolled back environmental regulations domestically, and then took credit for providing Americans with "the very cleanest air and cleanest water on the planet." Little of this was to be taken seriously.

Trump's legacy as a statesman will undoubtedly amount to the diplomatic equivalent of Mulligan stew . Examine the contents closely enough and you'll be able to find just about anything. Yet taken as a whole, the concoction falls well short of being nutritious, much less appetizing.

On the eve of the upcoming presidential election, the entire national security apparatus and its supporters assume that Trump's departure from office will restore some version of normalcy. Every component of that apparatus from the Pentagon and the State Department to the CIA and the Council on Foreign Relations to the editorial boards of the New York Times and Washington Post yearns for that moment.

To a very considerable degree, a Biden presidency will satisfy that yearning. Nothing if not a creature of the establishment, Biden himself will conform to its requirements. For proof, look no further than his vote in favor of invading Iraq in 2003. (No isolationist he.) Count on a Biden administration, therefore, to perpetuate the entire obsolete retinue of standard practices.

As Peter Beinart puts it , "When it comes to defense, a Biden presidency is likely to look very much like an Obama presidency, and that's going to look not so different from a Trump presidency when you really look at the numbers." Biden will increase the Pentagon budget, keep U.S. troops in the Middle East, and get tough with China. The United States will remain the world's number-one arms merchant, accelerate efforts to militarize outer space, and continue the ongoing modernization of the entire U.S. nuclear strike force. Biden will stack his team with CFR notables looking for jobs on the "inside."

Above all, Biden will recite with practiced sincerity the mantras of American exceptionalism as a summons to exercise global leadership. "The triumph of democracy and liberalism over fascism and autocracy created the free world. But this contest does not just define our past. It will define our future, as well." Those uplifting sentiments are, of course, his from a recent Foreign Affairs essay .

So if you liked U.S. national security policy before Trump mucked things up, then Biden is probably your kind of guy. Install him in the Oval Office and the mindless pursuit of "dominance in the name of internationalism" will resume. And the United States will revert to the policies that prevailed during the presidencies of Bill Clinton, George W. Bush, and Barack Obama -- policies, we should note, that paved the way for Donald Trump to win the White House.

The Voices That Count

What explains the persistence of this pattern despite an abundance of evidence showing that it's not working to the benefit of the American people? Why is it so difficult to shed a policy paradigm that dates from Hitler's assault on France, now a full 80 years in the past?

I hope that in a subsequent book Stephen Wertheim will address that essential question. In the meantime, however, allow me to make a stab at offering the most preliminary of answers.

Setting aside factors like bureaucratic inertia and the machinations of the military-industrial complex -- the Pentagon, arms manufacturers, and their advocates in Congress share an obvious interest in discovering new "threats" -- one likely explanation relates to a policy elite increasingly unable to distinguish between self-interest and the national interest. As secretary of state, John Quincy Adams never confused the two. His latter-day successors have done far less well.

As an actual basis for policy, the turn that Stephen Wertheim describes in Tomorrow, The World has proven to be nowhere near as enlightened or farseeing as its architects imagined or its latter day proponents still purport to believe it to be. The paradigm produced in 1940-1941 was, at best, merely serviceable. It responded to the nightmarish needs of that moment. It justified U.S. participation in efforts to defeat Nazi Germany, a necessary undertaking.

After 1945, except as a device for affirming the authority of foreign-policy elites, the pursuit of "dominance in the name of internationalism" proved to be problematic. Yet even as conditions changed, basic U.S. policy stayed the same: high levels of military spending, a network of foreign bases, a penchant for armed intervention abroad, a sprawling "national security" apparatus, and a politically subversive arms industry. Even after the Cold War and 9/11, these remain remarkably sacrosanct.

My own retrospective judgment of the Cold War tends toward an attitude of: well, I guess it could have been worse. When it comes to the U.S. response to 9/11, however, it's difficult to imagine what worse could have been.

Within the present-day foreign-policy establishment, however, a different interpretation prevails: the long, twilight struggle of the Cold War ended in a world historic victory, unsullied by any unfortunate post-9/11 missteps. The effect of this perspective is to affirm the wisdom of American statecraft now eight decades old and therefore justify its perpetuation long after both Hitler and Stalin, not to mention Saddam Hussein and Osama bin Laden, are dead and gone.

This paradigm persists for one reason only: it ensures that statecraft will remain a realm that resolutely excludes the popular will. Elites decide, while the job of ordinary Americans is to foot the bill. In that regard, the allocation of privileges and obligations now 80 years old still prevails today.

Only by genuinely democratizing the formulation of foreign policy will real change become possible. The turn in U.S. policy described in Tomorrow, The World came from the top. The turn needed today will have to come from below and will require Americans to rid themselves of their habit of deference when it comes to determining what this nation's role in the world will be. Those on top will do all in their power to avert any such loss of status.

The United States today suffers from illnesses both literal and metaphorical. Restoring the nation to good health and repairing our democracy must necessarily rate as paramount concerns. While Americans cannot ignore the world beyond their borders, the last thing they need is to embark upon a fresh round of searching for distant monsters to destroy. Heeding the counsel of John Quincy Adams might just offer an essential first step toward recovery. Share this:

Andrew Bacevich, a TomDispatch regular , is president of the Quincy Institute for Responsible Statecraft . His most recent book is The Age of Illusions: How America Squandered Its Cold War Victory .

[Nov 08, 2020] How Foreign Nations View the 2020 Election - The National Interest

Nov 08, 2020 | nationalinterest.org

Russia has consistently stressed its willingness to work with either candidate -- late last month, the Kremlin's press secretary Dmitri Peskov rebuffed suggestions that Moscow prefers the incumbent: "it would be wrong to say that Trump is more attractive to us."

But Russia's political commentary sphere has proven more polarized. Some cite Biden's readiness to extend the New START treaty without additional conditions as evidence that Biden is someone that the Kremlin can do business with; others have expressed concern over the Democratic candidate's "Russophobic" cabinet picks and predict that, under a Biden presidency, Washington's policy of rollback will escalate to an unprecedented level. But there is also an overarching belief that Washington's Russia policy is so deeply embedded across U.S. institutions that not much is likely to change in U.S.-Russian relations.

As Peskov put it, "there is a fixed place on the altar of US domestic policy for hatred of Russia and a Russophobic approach to bilateral relations with Moscow." Still other commentators are interested in the process as much as the outcome, drawing attention to ongoing mass unrest and allegations of electoral misconduct in order to argue that Washington has forfeited its moral authority to lecture others on proper democratic procedure and the orderly transition of power.

[Nov 08, 2020] Giuliani says Philadelphia Democrats voted from the grave, says he'll prove fraud in court -- RT USA News

Nov 08, 2020 | www.rt.com

Giuliani says Philadelphia Democrats voted from the grave, says he'll prove fraud in court 8 Nov, 2020 13:56 / Updated 8 hours ago Get short URL Giuliani says Philadelphia Democrats voted from the grave, says he'll prove fraud in court Rudy Giuliani speaks to reporters in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, November 7, 2020 © Reuters / Eduardo Munoz 476 Follow RT on RT President Donald Trump's lawyer, Rudy Giuliani, said that he's "up early working" on fraud cases in Pennsylvania. Giuliani claims that Joe Biden's win there was crooked, and the state GOP too has demanded an audit of the vote.

"@realDonaldTrump election night 800,000 lead was wiped out by hundreds of thousands of mail in ballots counted without any Republican observer," Giuliani tweeted on Sunday morning, a day after Associated Press called Pennsylvania and the entire election in favor of Joe Biden.

https://platform.twitter.com/embed/index.html?creatorScreenName=RT_com&dnt=false&embedId=twitter-widget-0&frame=false&hideCard=false&hideThread=false&id=1325410570703679489&lang=en&origin=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.rt.com%2Fusa%2F506097-giuliani-dead-voters-pennsylvania-fraud%2F&siteScreenName=RT_com&theme=light&widgetsVersion=ed20a2b%3A1601588405575&width=550px

"Why were Republicans excluded?," he continued, before asking his followers to "tweet me your guess, while I go prove it in court."

Like his boss, Giuliani has insisted that Biden's apparent victory was the result of fraud. Republican observers say they were denied access to counting centers, which allowed staff inside to do "bad things" with the ballots, in Trump's words. At least one postal worker has claimed that he was ordered to backdate mail-in ballots, while the Trump campaign has alleged that droves of dead people voted in Philadelphia, and that staff there illegally counted late-arriving mail ballots.

Giuliani called the "Philadelphia Democrat machine" "brazen," and claimed that the late heavyweight boxer Joe Frazier and actor Will Smith's grandfather both voted in previous elections in the city after their deaths.

"I bet Biden dominated this group," he tweeted. "We will find out."

Just an example of how brazen the Philadelphia Democrat machine is.Former heavyweight champion Joe Frazier voted in the 2018 election. He died on 11/7/18.Will Smith's grandfather voted in 2017, 2018. He died in 2016.I bet Biden dominated this group. We will find out.

-- Rudy W. Giuliani (@RudyGiuliani) November 8, 2020

Biden beat Trump in Pennsylvania by around 40,000 votes, or 0.6 percent of the total vote, though a small number of ballots remain to be counted. Though Republicans in the Keystone State have not outright called Biden's win fraudulent, State House Speaker Bryan Cutler called on Friday for Governor Tom Wolf to launch a "full audit" of the vote there before certifying the result.

In a letter to Wolf, Cutler cited the widespread use of mail-in ballots without signatures, the exclusion of Republicans from polling places, and the extension of the mail-in deadline as "issues that cannot be overlooked."

ALSO ON RT.COM Trump files lawsuit alleging in-person votes in Arizona might have been 'incorrectly rejected' due to poll workers' actions

Based on how the vote was run in Pennsylvania, "no matter who wins, you're going to have 50 percent of the population, no matter which side, that is not going to have faith in the result," State Senate Majority Leader Jake Corman told reporters on Friday.

Quizzed by reporters about her handling of the vote, Pennsylvania's Secretary of State, Kathy Boockvar said that she had done everything "to make sure every voter, every candidate and every party has access to a fair, free, safe and secure election."

[Nov 08, 2020] Biden has vowed to regain the world's respect for the Outlaw US Empire, which begs this question: When did the world actually respect it?

Nov 08, 2020 | www.moonofalabama.org

karlof1 , Nov 8 2020 21:29 utc | 57

Biden has vowed to regain the world's respect for the Outlaw US Empire, which begs this question: When did the world actually respect it? "Leaders" who uttered the word respect were paid to do so as it was painfully clear for those at the top levels of governments that after WW2 what was the USA was now the Outlaw US Empire since it had no compunction violating International Law and thus its own fundamental Law--a nuclear armed outlaw is something you fear, not respect. And even before WW2, FDR had to make clear his foreign policy toward those in the Western Hemisphere was to be that of a Good Neighbor, not Loan Shark. Again, the Loan Shark is feared, not respected. So, what respect is it that Biden seeks to regain since none has existed for over a century? We'll need to wait and see what he does immediately after he's sworn in on 20 January for he must first show respect for the Constitution he'll swear to defend and uphold, and that means obeying the edicts of International Law as directed by the UN Charter which is part of said Constitution. IMO, that would need to be a mandatory first step if he wants to gain respect. Otherwise, he'll signal the USA will remain the Outlaw US Empire.

[Nov 08, 2020] Weak presidents serve a purpose, which is to allow their handlers in the CIA/deep state to work unimpeded

Nov 08, 2020 | www.moonofalabama.org

Walter , Nov 8 2020 13:36 utc | 2

Viewing Biden as a cannula to insert Harris and all that would imply, I ask how such a weak person as Harris might seek to increase consent for her rule. Mrs Thatcher sought this, as did Bush 43, Truman with Korea, and as many others have classically done, by making a war and a victory. It does seem sure that the "election" has failed materially to achieve the basic goal of creating consent. In the example of Thatcher, Robert Green tells us that in the Belgrano affair the war went very nearly to atomic explosives. One is inclined, in the matter of atomics, to speculate on how many times luck will prevent nukewar. Of course Korea also came quite close to nukewar too, and remains there.

The glorious (if hypothetical so far) Harris War may not go well, as Martyanov tells us, the US has in fact lost military supremacy, and the weak unconsented Harris is not liable, I judge, to have the strength or understanding to avoid defeat.

Defeat, at this stage of empire, may be akin to the wizard of oz being seen to be a fake. Indeed, Harris herself seems to be a fake "black" and also a fake champion.

When empires lose wars and are seen to be insane, the several satrapies begin to depart. Only today, they say, Germany decided not to buy F35's... Therefore, considered as a whole from this moment in History, it seems to me that we shall have a glorious atomic defeat, will all that follows.

That would seem to satisfy the Deagle prediction of a mere 54 million persons in USA circa 2025.


William Gruff , Nov 8 2020 16:56 utc | 32

When discussing weak people in the White House, don't forget the Bush Baby. Weak presidents serve a purpose, which is to allow their handlers in the CIA/deep state to work unimpeded. What this means is that Harris has no bearing on whether the US will go kinetic again. That decision will be up to committees in the CIA/deep state. Unfortunately, the CIA is a distillation of the very most violently psychotic and delusional freaks from American society, which is itself a society that produces more than its share of violently psychotic and delusional freaks.

That's not good.

lulu , Nov 8 2020 19:26 utc | 48

Neoliberal fascists continue the purge of the real Left and give us a small taste of what will happen under a Biden presidency

Posted by: killwallstreet | Nov 8 2020 13:37 utc | 3
------------------------------------------------------

Neoliberals and Neocons are both supporters of the Empire! The only difference is Neocon don't hide their Empire agenda behind some nice words/slogans like the Neoliberals.

Mao once said he'd prefer to deal with the right party.

oldhippie , Nov 8 2020 21:16 utc | 56

Gruff @ 32

No. CIA is a distillation, no, a perfectly straightforward committee of old WASP families. Are WASP families all those other adjectives? Yes.

[Nov 08, 2020] There is stong continuity of EMPIRE policy. Biden, Harris, Trump, Hillary, Obama, GWBush, Clinton all did or will do what the Deep State EMPIRE managers want them to

Nov 08, 2020 | www.moonofalabama.org

Jackrabbit , Nov 8 2020 15:19 utc | 17

Walter @Nov8 13:36 #2

I ask how such a weak person as Harris might seek to increase consent for her rule.

I think you are failing to see the continuity of EMPIRE policy. Biden, Harris, Trump, Hillary, Obama, GWBush, Clinton all did or will do what the Deep State EMPIRE managers want them to. Harris is no any more prone to war-making than any of her predecessors and will not take risks that the Deep State have not thoroughly examined.

[Nov 08, 2020] The logic of finance is impregnating in every facet of American life and politics. The USA is consolidating itself more and more as an exclusively financial superpower.

Nov 08, 2020 | www.moonofalabama.org

vk , Nov 8 2020 14:31 utc | 8

China not amused:

Drop illusions over China-US relations, but don't give up efforts: Global Times editorial

--//--

'President-Elect' Joe Biden Pledges to 'Make America Respected Around the World Again'

This confirms my hypothesis that stated the liberals didn't like Trump merely because he's vulgar - not because of his policies.

This is the "confidence thesis", which states that the sole factor for the success of any given liberal system (not socialism - socialism is failed by design...) is merely the people in it to make it work and trust blindly it will work. Guess where this thesis is dominant? The financial sector.

The logic of finance is impregnating in every facet of American life and politics. The USA is consolidating itself more and more as an exclusively financial superpower.

[Nov 08, 2020] The Challenge for Joe Biden Reese Erlich

That's an extreme level of naivety. Biden is beholden to the military-industrial complex probably more then Trump.
Nov 08, 2020 | original.antiwar.com

November 07, 2020

If he's smart, the likely President-elect will stop the unpopular endless wars and use the money to help our domestic economy.

...Lunch Pail Joe was supposed to win back the support of white, blue-collar workers who had defected to the Republicans. Campaign organizers said he would energize Black and Latinx voters. But there wasn't much of a shift among non-college educated men. And those folks who did go Democratic largely voted against Trump, not for Biden. It's as if Biden had undergone an enthusiasm bypass.

Trump's populist appeal has strong racist and misogynist elements, but also reflects a genuine anger at economic inequality and endless wars. If Biden simply returns to mainstream Democratic Party governance, it won't satisfy the Democratic Party base nor those Trump supporters with legitimate complaints.

So what is to be done?

Biden will have his hands full reversing Trump's disastrous domestic policies. But he can also make serious changes in US foreign policy.

Biden can implement progressive and popular policies during his first 100 days in office, in many cases, programs that he already promised and which don't require Congressional approval. These include:

Stop the war in Yemen : This years-long conflict, which benefits no one but the oil-rich rulers of Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, has killed more than 100,000 people and caused the preventable deaths of 113,000 children . Biden could immediately freeze weapons sales to Saudi Arabia and the UAE, forcing them to stop bombing civilians and withdraw their troops. It would be one step toward ending unpopular, endless wars.

Earlier this year, Democrats and anti-interventionist Republicans in the Senate voted to invoke the War Powers Act to stop funding the Yemen war. It was vetoed by Trump.

To his credit, Biden supported the war powers resolution. His campaign spokesperson Andrew Bates told The Washington Post , "Vice President Biden believes it is past time to end US support for the war in Yemen and cancel the blank check the Trump Administration has given Saudi Arabia for its conduct of that war."

Lift Trump's unilateral oil blockade of Cuba and restore normal diplomatic relations: Trump has gone further to economically attack Cuba than any other President. He cut off much of Cuba's oil supplies from Venezuela by applying sanctions against international shipping companies. This, combined with a halt in foreign tourism, has wrecked the Cuban economy. Public transport doesn't have enough gasoline; trucks can't bring produce from the countryside.

The people of Cuba pose no danger to the US. During the later part of Barack Obama's presidency, people from the US freely visited Cuba, to the benefit of both countries.

During the campaign, Biden said , "As President, I will promptly reverse the failed Trump policies that have inflicted harm on the Cuban people and done nothing to advance democracy and human rights."

With a stroke of the pen Biden could lift the oil embargo, re-open US visits to Cuba, and fully staff the Embassy in Havana, which is now operating with a skeleton crew.

Rejoin the Iran nuclear accord: Trump unilaterally withdrew from the internationally binding Iran nuclear accord and imposed harsh economic sanctions on the Iranian people. This policy of "maximum pressure" has failed to change Iranian domestic or foreign policy. Biden should immediately rejoin the accord and lift all sanctions related to nuclear issues.

In September, Biden wrote , "If Iran returns to strict compliance with the nuclear deal, the US would rejoin the agreement as a starting point for follow-on negotiations." He added that the new administration would lift the "disgraceful" ban that prohibits Iranians and people from other Muslims nations from entering the US.

But Biden's promises were couched in bellicose, Cold War rhetoric about Iran's alleged threats to the US. Democratic and Republican hawks will certainly pressure Biden to take a hard line against Iran. But both countries would benefit from re-implementing the accord and lowering tensions.

End attacks on China: Trump initiated a trade war against China. He tried to ban Chinese technology from being used in the US and even sought the arrest of a top Chinese corporate executive. But, of course, China retaliated. Trump's policy against China has been a massive failure, with the US losing nearly 300,000 jobs as of September 2019.

China poses no military threat to the people of the US. China has one military base outside its territory; the US has about 750. China now has also developed the world's second largest economy and competes successfully with US corporations. The trade war is aimed at promoting US corporate profits at the expense of Chinese competitors.

With executive action, Biden could end the trade war quickly. Unfortunately, Biden has "drunk the Kool-Aid" when it comes to China. He said , "My focus will be on rallying our friends in both Asia and Europe in . . . joining us to get tough on China and its trade and technology abuses."

Biden must shift policies on China as part of recognizing that the world has changed a lot in recent years.

Joe Biden is a mainstream Democrat who supported many of the foreign policy disasters of past presidencies. He backed the occupation of Afghanistan and the 2003 Iraq War, and he strongly supports Israel against the Palestinians.

But today, the US is considerably weaker, wracked by recession, and politically divided. People are fed up with endless wars. Regional powers such as Turkey, Russia, and Iran are exerting influence in areas formerly under US domination.

If he's smart, Biden will recognize the new reality, stop US interventions, and use the money being spent on foreign wars to help our domestic economy. I'm confident he will make some promised changes but progressives will have to build grass roots pressure to make the changes we really need.

Foreign Correspondent appears every other week. Reese Erlich is an adjunct professor in International Studies at the University of San Francisco. Follow him on Twitter , @ReeseErlich; friend him on Facebook ; and visit his webpage .

[Nov 08, 2020] Biden administration will find it hard to integrate itself in a world changed by Trump

Nov 08, 2020 | www.rt.com

The world Vice President Biden knew at the end of the Obama administration no longer exists. In four years, President Trump reshaped the geopolitical reality around the globe, making Biden's dreams of "normalization" impossible.

If the press reports are true, it appears that much of the world joined the roughly 50 percent of Americans who celebrated the news that Joe Biden had passed the Electoral College threshold of the 270 votes needed to become president-elect. While America struggles to find a path where Biden will be able to restore domestic tranquility to a deeply divided nation, the world will likewise need to get to grips with how it will respond to an administration whose thinking is rooted in a world that no longer exists.

The geopolitical reality that existed in 2016, following eight years of the Obama administration, has been radically transformed after four years of a Trump administration which broke with virtually every previously held diplomatic norm, tradition, and precedent. It was not just US policy that had been altered – the world also changed, forced to adapt to Trump's unconventional approach toward international affairs. A Biden administration which seeks to recreate the world that existed in 2016 will find itself ill-prepared to deal with the harsh new realities of a post-Trump world.

READ MORE Trump was a symptom of American decline that Biden is unlikely to reverse Trump was a symptom of American decline that Biden is unlikely to reverse

Repairing the US economy will be a top domestic priority for a Biden administration, and this cannot be without consideration being given to the contentious state of US-China relations. Policies seeking to bring an end to the ongoing US-China trade war will collide with Biden's tough rhetoric regarding China's military presence in the South China Sea and elsewhere. It is hard to see how either can be done in isolation, meaning the status quo inherited from the Trump administration will likely remain for some time to come.

Hollow climate rhetoric

Joe Biden has promised that he would re-enter the Paris Climate Accord immediately upon assuming the presidency. When the Trump administration formally withdrew the US from the Paris Accord on November 4, 2020, Joe Biden responded by tweeting "Today, the Trump Administration officially left the Paris Climate Agreement. And in exactly 77 days, a Biden Administration will rejoin it."

Re-entering the Paris Climate Accord will not pose much of a problem – the US never treated it as a treaty, with then-president Obama bypassing constitutional requirements for Senate advice and consent by simply signing an executive order. But is unlikely that Biden will be able to get Congress to fund a multi-trillion-dollar initiative at a time when the US economy is reeling from the economic downturn brought on by the Civd-19 pandemic. In short, Biden's plan to rejoin the Paris Accord is little more than political theater with no chance of meaningful success.

Repairing the Iran deal or not

Another "day one" priority for Biden is to rejoin the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (the JCPOA, or Iran nuclear deal). President Trump precipitously withdrew from this Obama-legacy agreement in May 2018 (another agreement enshrined not as a treaty, but rather through executive order). Biden has committed to rejoining the deal "once Iran returns to compliance," and then use the JCPOA as the basis upon which to negotiate a broader and longer-lasting deal with Iran.

One of the first challenges confronting a Biden administration is to navigate the issue of what constitutes "returning to compliance." It was the US, not Iran, that withdrew from the JCPOA, and today the JCPOA framework continues to exist, sans America. As such, the first step that must be taken is for the US to rejoin without pre-conditions. Then and only then would Iran consider the possibility of resuming negotiations about any post-JCPOA agreement.

However, some of Biden's key foreign policy advisers appear to have re-thought their position on Iranian sanctions , which would be lifted if the US rejoined the JCPOA. There is a feeling that the Trump policy of "maximum pressure" might be on the verge of paying dividends. Void of any up-front commitment regarding future nuclear policy, ballistic missiles or regional interference, there is a feeling in the Biden camp that keeping sanctions in place might be the best policy option vis-a-vis Iran.

ALSO ON RT.COM Biden has defeated Trump. Meet the new boss same as the old boss Rollback on Israel?

Further complicating any future Biden Iran policy will be how a Biden administration deals with the issue of troop withdrawal from Afghanistan, Iraq and Syria, and the Trump Arab-Israeli "peace offensive" which has seen several Gulf Arab States normalize relations with Israel as part of an effort to solidify an anti-Iranian coalition in the Persian Gulf. It is highly likely that Biden will seek to solidify the US military presence in the region, thereby threatening the peace agreement with the Taliban, and provoking pro-Iranian militias in Iraq. Likewise, Biden will seek to use the US military presence inside Syria as a means of strengthening US-Kurdish ties. In short, a Biden administration will find itself rapidly bogged down in the forever wars in the Middle East, with no plan on how to either win or get out.

US-Israeli relations during the Obama administration were at an all-time low, primarily because of Israel's handling of the issue of Palestinian rights and statehood. With the Trump administration all but writing Palestine out of any Arab-Israeli framework for peace, the Biden administration will be immediately confronted by the issue of how to re-engage on the issue of Palestine , knowing that in doing so it could upset the trajectory of Arab-Israeli normalization that had been begun under Trump.

Turkey and NATO

Likewise, the issue of Turkey looms large . Turkey's involvement in Syria, Libya, Iraq, and now Azerbaijan has changed the geopolitical landscape in the eastern Mediterranean Sea, the Levant, and the southern Caucasus in the four years since the Obama administration. Any effort to aggressively confront Turkey would need to be taken in conjunction with Biden's plans to "repair" America's relationship with NATO and the rest of Europe. This is especially the case regarding Turkey's contentious relations with both France and Greece.

NATO itself is a major issue confronting a Biden administration. Biden has said he will renew good relations between the US and its NATO allies strained by four years of the Trump administration. But what does this mean exactly? Will Biden keep US the forces in Germany that Trump had begun to withdraw? And what will Biden do about US forces in Poland? Does Biden's pledge to "get tough" with Russia extend to doubling down on demanding new elections in Belarus? Providing more lethal aid to Ukraine? Further encouraging Georgian membership in NATO? What will Biden's policy be regarding intermediate-range missiles in Europe following Trump's withdrawal from the 1987 landmark INF Treaty? The reality is Trump has left a potential Biden administration a tangled mess in Europe, where any policy initiative in one area raises a host of problems in another.

READ MORE Caitlin Johnstone: Don't fool yourself, your Biden vote was not a 'vote against fascism' Caitlin Johnstone: Don't fool yourself, your Biden vote was not a 'vote against fascism'

How to be tough on Russia

And then there is the issue of Russia. Biden spent his entire campaign promoting how "tough" he was going to be on Russia , and in particular its president, Vladimir Putin. Two major decisions that will be confronted by a Biden administration early on, however, would require more finesse than muscle. The most pressing will be the extension of the Obama-era New START treaty, set to expire on February 21, 2021 – exactly a month and one day after President Biden would be sworn into office. Russia has indicated that it is ready to extend the New START treaty without preconditions, and it is likely that a Biden administration would seek to do just this in order to preserve the last reaming arms control framework between the US and Russia. The next step, however – negotiating a follow-on treaty – requires an atmosphere of trust that, on the surface at least – appears to be lacking on the part of a new Biden administration, especially if it is simultaneously seeking to appear "tough."

Another problem is that of the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline, connecting Russia with Europe. The Trump administration has put in place strong sanctions designed to kill the project. Germany, a critical NATO ally and one of the nations with which a Biden administration would logically be seeking to repair relations (especially after the particularly contentious relationship between Trump and German Chancellor Angela Merkel), has taken umbrage over what it deems to be US interference in its sovereign economic interests.

When Biden was vice president under Obama, he called the Nord Stream 2 project "a bad deal for Europe." Every indication is that Biden continues to embrace this stance. Even if Biden were to soften his position on Nord Stream 2 as an olive branch to Germany, however, it would not mean that Biden would be willing to soften the US policy on sanctioning Russia over Ukraine. The fact is, Biden does not much care for Putin, and it is hard to see how the kind of personal relationship that preceded most meaningful US-Russian diplomatic breakthroughs could be engendered, let alone prosper.

There are many other critical foreign policy challenges facing a potential Biden administration, including the issue of North Korean nuclear weapons, Venezuela, the war in Yemen, and the growing ISIS presence in Africa, to name but a few. A Biden administration would most likely seek to bring into its ranks foreign policy and national security experts who had been weaned on eight years of the Obama administration. But the world these experts left in 2016 no longer exists. Moreover, these experts have been virtually shut out from any advisory role during the Trump administration. A new Biden foreign policy team will be seeking to rebuild relations with a world based upon an outdated game plan, creating the potential for a disconnect between expectations and results that could further strain America's relationship with the global community.

The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of RT.


[Nov 08, 2020] Most Russians Are Anxious About Biden, but the Kremlin May Prefer Him

Nov 08, 2020 | foreignpolicy.com

The prevailing view is that a victory for Biden would be bad for Russia, because a Democratic administration is expected to impose new economic sanctions on Moscow as punishment for its bad behavior -- first and foremost, for its interference in the 2016 U.S. presidential election. This view is widely shared by pro-Kremlin pundits, senior officials and the executives of state-owned enterprises, and is even promoted by the few remaining independent Russian media outlets such as the Bell newsletter, a daily staple in the information diet of the Russian upper-middle class.

A more nuanced view on Biden is held by some people working on U.S. issues in the Russian government. A president who is not tainted by suspicion of being a Russian asset -- and who knows how to organize a normal process for national security discussions -- will be able to restore some guardrails to the U.S.-Russia relationship and prevent further deterioration, those people argue. A President Biden would not be able to pay close attention to Russia, since he and his senior advisers will be overwhelmed by domestic issues and otherwise focusing on China. But a possible new Democratic administration appears to be open to retaining some pillars of the arms control regime and discussing rules of competition in cyberspace. And it could be more clear-eyed -- and therefore skeptical -- about the side effects and efficiency of sanctions as the United States' major tool in Russia policy. Much will depend on who is put in senior positions such as secretary of state and national security advisor, and on the midlevel bureaucrats controlling the Russia portfolio.

After U.S.-Russian relations nearly hit rock bottom on Trump's watch, nobody in Russia believes that four more years of Trump could be good for Moscow. If Trump is reelected, the only silver lining will be the even deeper level of disarray in the Western alliance and U.S. disengagement from its partners that a second Trump term would likely bring. For the Kremlin, schadenfreude over the gradual demise of Pax Americana would simply sugarcoat the risks and downsides of Trump remaining in the White House.

Alexander Gabuev is a senior fellow at the Carnegie Moscow Center. Twitter: @AlexGabuev

[Nov 07, 2020] The Task before -Sleepy Joe- is to put Liberal America Right Back to Sleep - Dissident Voice

Nov 07, 2020 | dissidentvoice.org

The Task before "Sleepy Joe" is to put Liberal America Right Back to Sleep

by Jonathan Cook / November 6th, 2020

At birth, all of us begin a journey that offers opportunities either to grow – not just physically, but mentally, emotionally and spiritually – or to stagnate. The journey we undertake lasts a lifetime, but there are dozens of moments each day when we have a choice to make tiny incremental gains in experience, wisdom and compassion or to calcify through inertia, complacency and selfishness.

No one can be engaged and receptive all the time. But it is important to recognise these small opportunities for growth when they present themselves, even if at any particular moment we may decide to avoid grasping them.

When we shut ourselves into the car on the commute to work, do we use it as a moment to be alone with our thoughts or to silence them with the radio or music? When we sit with friends, do we choose to be fully present with them or scroll through the news feed on our phones? When we return from a difficult day at work, do we talk the issues through with family or reach for a glass of wine, or maybe bingewatch something on TV?

Everyone needs downtime, but if every opportunity for reflection becomes downtime then we are stagnating, not growing. We are moving away from life, from being human.

Dried-out husk

This week liberal Americans reached for that glass of wine and voted Joe Biden. Others did so much more reluctantly, spurred on by the fear of giving his opponent another four years.

Biden isn't over the finishing line quite yet, and there are likely to be recounts, court challenges and possibly violence over the result, but he seems all but certain to be crowned the next US president. Not that that should provoke any kind of celebration. The rest of the world's population, future generations, the planet itself – none of us had a vote – were always going to be the losers whichever candidate won.

The incumbent, Donald Trump, miscalculated, it seems, if he thought dismissing his opponent as "Sleepy Joe" would be enough to damage Biden's electoral fortunes. True, Trump was referring to the fact that Biden is a dried-out husk of the machine politician he once was. But after four years of Trump and in the midst of a pandemic, the idea of sleeping through the next presidential term probably sounded pretty appealing to liberals.

Most of them had spent their whole political lives asleep, but four years ago they were forcibly roused from their languor to protest against Donald Trump. They grew enraged by the symptom of their corrupted political system rather than by the corrupt system itself. For them, "Sleepy Joe" is just what the doctor ordered.

But it won't be Biden doing the sleeping. It will be the liberals who cheerlead him. Biden – or perhaps Kamala Harris – will be busy making sure his corporate donors get exactly what they paid for, whatever the cost to the rest of us.

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Anger and blame

In this analogy, Trump is not the opposite of Biden, of course. He represents stagnation too, if of a different kind.

Trump channels Americans' frustration and anger at a political and economic system they rightly see as failing them. He articulates who should be falsely blamed for their woes: be it immigrants, minorities, socialists, or the New World Order. He offers justified, if misdirected, rage in contrast to Biden's dangerous complacency.

But however awful Trump may be, at least some of those voting for him are grappling, if mostly unconsciously, with the tension between stagnation and growth – and not of the economic kind. Unlike most liberals, who dismiss this simplistically as "populism", some of Trump's supporters do at least seem to recognise that the tension exists. They simply haven't been offered a constructive alternative to anger and blame.

Ritually disappointed

Unlike the liberals and the Trumpists, many in the US have come to understand that their political system offers nothing but stultifying stagnation for ordinary Americans by design , even if it comes in two, smartly attired flavours.

They see that the Trump camp rages ineffectually against the corporate elite, deluded into believing that a member of that very same elite will serve as their saviour. And they see that the Biden camp represents an ineffectual rainbow coalition of competing social identities, deluded into believing that those divisions will make them stronger, not weaker, in the fight for economic justice. Both of these camps appear resigned to being serially – maybe ritually – disappointed.

Failure does not inspire these camps to seek change, it makes them cling all the more desperately to their failed strategies, to attach themselves even more frantically and fervently to their perceived tribe.

That is why this US election – at a moment when the need for real, systemic change is more urgent, more evident than ever before – produced not just one but two of the worst presidential candidates of all time. We are looking at exactly what happens when a whole society not only stops growing but begins to putrefy.

Enervating divisions

Not everyone in the US is so addicted to these patterns of self-delusion and self-harm.

Large swaths of the population don't bother to vote out of hard-borne experience. The system is so rigged against them that they don't think it matters much which corporate party is in power. The outcome will be the same for them either way.

Others vote third party, or consciously abstain in protest at big money's vice-like grip on the two-party system. Others, appalled at the prospect of Trump – and before him the two Bushes, and before that Ronald Reagan – were forced once again to vote for the Democratic ticket with a heavy heart. They know all too well who Biden is (a creature of his corporate donors) and what he stands for (whatever his corporate donors want). But he is slightly less monstrous than his rival, and in the US system those are the meaningful electoral options.

And among Trump's supporters too, there are many desperate for wholesale change. They voted for Trump because at least he paid lip service to change.

These groups – most likely a clear electoral majority – could redirect the US towards political, social, even spiritual growth, if they could find a way to come together. They suffer from their own enervating divisions.

How should they best use their numerical strength? Should they struggle to win the presidency, and if so should it be a third-party candidate or should they work within the existing party structures? What lesson should they draw from the Democratic leadership's sabotaging – twice over – of Bernie Sanders, a candidate offering meaningful change? Is it time to adopt an entirely different strategy, rejecting traditional politics? And if so, can it be made to work when all the major institutions – from the politicians and courts, to the police, intelligence services and media – are firmly in the hands of the corporate enemy?

Terrible reckoning

There is no real way to sleep through life, or politics, and not wake up one day – usually when it is too late – realising catastrophic mistakes were made.

As individuals, we may face that terrible reckoning on our death-beds. Empires rarely go so quietly. They fall when it is time for their citizens to learn a painful lesson about hubris. Their technological innovations come back to haunt them, as ancient Rome's lead water-pipes supposedly once did. Or they over-extend with ambitious wars that drain the coffers of gold, as warrior-kings have discovered to their cost through the ages. Or, when the guardians of empire least expect it, "barbarians" – the victims of their crimes – storm the city gates.

The globe-spanning US empire faces the rapid emergence of all these threats on a planetary scale. Its endless wars against phantom enemies have left the US burdened with astounding debt. Its technologies, from nuclear weapons to AI, mean there can be no possible escape from a major miscalculation. And the US empire's insatiable greed and determination to colonise every last inch of the planet, if only with our waste products, is gradually killing the life-systems we depend on.

If Biden becomes president, his victory will be a temporary win for torpor, for complacency. But a new Trump will emerge soon enough once again to potentise – and misdirect – the fury steadily building beneath the surface. If we let it, the pendulum will swing back and forth, between ineffectual lethargy and ineffectual rage, until it is too late. Unless we actively fight back, the stagnation will suffocate us all.

Facebook Twitter Reddit Email Jonathan Cook , based in Nazareth, Israel is a winner of the Martha Gellhorn Special Prize for Journalism. His latest books are Israel and the Clash of Civilisations: Iraq, Iran and the Plan to Remake the Middle East (Pluto Press) and Disappearing Palestine: Israel's Experiments in Human Despair (Zed Books). Read other articles by Jonathan , or visit Jonathan's website .

This article was posted on Friday, November 6th, 2020 at 2:00am and is filed under Democrats , Donald Trump , Elections , Joe Biden , Republicans , United States .

[Nov 07, 2020] Alliance of Liberals, Neocons Set to Shape US Foreign Policy

Nov 07, 2020 | ronpaulinstitute.org

Alliance of Liberals, Neocons Set to Shape US Foreign Policy written by marshall auerback and james carden wednesday september 2, 2020

The emergence in recent weeks of a coalition of neoconservative Republicans and former US national-security officials who have thrown their support behind the Democratic candidacy of Joe Biden is an ominous development to those who believe US foreign policy should be guided by the principles of realism and military restraint, rather than perpetual wars of choice.

In early June, a group of former officials from the George W Bush administration launched a political action committee (PAC) in support of Biden's candidacy. The group, 43 Alumni for Biden , boasts nearly 300 former Bush officials and is seeking to mobilize disaffected Republicans nationwide.

The mobilization appears to be having an impact: More recently, "more than 100 former staff of [the late US senator John] McCain's congressional offices and campaigns also endorsed Biden for president," according to NBC News , as well as dozens of former staffers from Senator Mitt Romney's 2012 presidential campaign.

That Republican support comes in addition to the more than 70 former US national-security officials who teamed up and issued a statement urging Biden's election in November.

Citing what they believe is the grave damage President Donald Trump has done to US national security, the group does include some mainstream Republicans like Richard Armitage and Chuck Hagel, but also features notable neocon hardliners like Eliot Cohen, John Negroponte and David Kramer, who, perhaps not incidentally, played a leading role in disseminating the utterly discredited Steele dossier prior to Trump's inauguration.

These are not merely grifters or desperate bids for attention by unscrupulous and avaricious Beltway swamp creatures. Though there are those too: the so-called Lincoln Project , helmed by neocon operative Rick Wilson, which is an outside group of Republicans (including former Republican National Committee chairman Michael Steele) devoted to defeating Trump in November.

As historian David Sessions recently tweeted , "Basically nobody in liberal circles is taking seriously the consequences of the fact that the exiled cadre of the Republican Party are building a massive power base in the Democratic Party."

The merger between Democrats and neocons is not merely confined to the world of electoral politics; it is already affecting policy as well.

Over the summer, in response to The New York Times' dubious "Russia bounty" story , Democratic congressman Jason Crow teamed up with Republican congresswoman Liz Cheney (daughter of former US vice-president Dick Cheney) to prohibit Trump from withdrawing troops from Afghanistan.

Republicans and Democrats in the Senate and the House of Representatives Armed Services Committee also collaborated to pass an amendment that imposed restrictions on Trump's plan to withdraw troops from Germany , showing, if nothing else, that the bipartisan commitment to the new cold war is alive and well.

It is noteworthy that while there has been considerable pushback to economic neoliberalism within the Democratic Party in recent years, thanks, mainly, to the candidacy of Bernie Sanders, the advocacy of reformers like Elizabeth Warren and the increasing popularity of economists like Stephanie Kelton , the same cannot be said for foreign policy.

Biden has evinced an openness to being "pushed left" on social and economic policies if he is elected president, but on external affairs he still largely operates within the standard Washington foreign-policy playbook.

If anything, on foreign policy Democrats have moved rightward in recent years, having fallen not only under the spell of "Russiagate" but also increasingly under the influence of neocons and other former Bush officials who have pushed that discredited narrative for their own ends.

The Democrats have also displayed a rather supine obeisance in regard to the country's intelligence community, in spite of a multiplicity of well-documented lies or half-truths that would at the very least justify some skepticism about their claims or motivations.

Nobody should be surprised.

The neocons had been signaling their intention to flee the Republicans as early as 2016 when it was widely reported that Robert Kagan had decided to endorse Hillary Clinton for president and speak at a Washington fundraiser alongside other national-security fixtures worried about the alleged isolationist drift within the Republican Party.

Indeed, the Democrats welcomed the likes of Kagan and fellow neocon extremist Max Boot with open arms, setting the stage for where we are today: a Democratic presidential nominee running to the right of the Republican nominee on foreign policy.

Missing: whither the progressives?

Over the past few US election cycles, progressive Democrats have increasingly challenged the party's prevailing neoliberal bias on domestic economic policy. Equally striking, however, is that they have been delinquent in failing to provide an alternative to the hegemonic influence of militarists and interventionists growing within their party regarding foreign policy.

As it stands today, the so-called progressive foreign-policy alternative is really no alternative at all. To the contrary, it evokes Giuseppe Tomasi di Lampedusa's seminal work, The Leopard , whose main character, Tancredi, sagely observes to his uncle , "If we want things to stay as they are, things will have to change."

So it is with much of what passes for a genuine foreign-policy alternative: The rhetoric slightly changes, the personnel certainly change, but in substance, the policy status quo largely remains.

Consider a recent interview with the socialist Jacobin magazine featuring Matt Duss, a foreign-policy adviser to Senator Bernie Sanders. Duss, who seeks to articulate the foundations of a new "progressive" foreign policy, told the Quincy Institute's Daniel Bessner:

"We have neither the right nor the ability to transform other countries, but we should do what we can to protect and expand the political space in these countries for local people to do that work. We can also provide funding or resources for American civil society actors to work in solidarity with their international counterparts ." [emphasis ours]
That sounds anodyne enough, but in reality, it is nothing but a form of liberal imperialism. Historically, seemingly benign initiatives conducted under the aegis of local people backed by so-called democracy-building programs have often planted the seeds for more malign military intervention later.

Who makes the decision as to which local people to support? How does one (purportedly) protect and expand that political space? We have seen how well that worked out in Afghanistan, Iraq, or, indeed, in the mounting human tragedy that is Syria today.

Comments like that of Matt Duss amount to this: "We don't have the right to transform other countries but we're going to try anyway." Forswearing pre-emptive military action (wars of choice) isn't enough. Change will only come about when US foreign policy adheres to the principles of the UN Charter, and above all, the ancient Westphalian principle of non-interference in the internal affairs of other countries. American policymakers need to learn that less is more.

That used to be a guiding principle of Democrats, for example, Franklin Delano Roosevelt's " good neighbor policy " that repudiated intervention in the domestic affairs of Latin America.

Of course, as subsequent events such as World War II illustrated, there may be a point at which external assistance/intervention in other parts of the world might become necessary; but the United States should not perpetually arrogate to itself the role of sole judge and jury in determining when that line should be crossed, no matter how benign its intentions might appear.

The broader point is that explicating a foreign policy somewhat less hawkish and merely paying lip service to international law that transcend the norms established by the Bush-Cheney neocons isn't enough.

That is the foreign-policy equivalent of the Republican-lite economic agenda embraced by " New Democrats " such as Bill Clinton, Robert Rubin, Barack Obama and Timothy Geithner, whereby the Democrats internalize the Republican Party's market-fundamentalist paradigm, but simply promise to implement it more fairly, rather than do away with it altogether.

That appears unlikely to change under a future Biden administration. As American Conservative editor Kelley Beaucar Vlahos has noted , "Democratic interventionists and Blob careerists now [sit] at the right hand of [Biden] like [Antony] Blinken, Nicholas Burns, Susan Rice, Samantha Power and Michele Flournoy , who has been touted as a possible secretary of defense.

"They would sooner drag the country back into Syria, as well as position aggressively against China if the military pushed hard enough and there was a humanitarian reason to justify it."

Nowhere in Biden's foreign-policy ambit do we find mainstream figures warning about the dangers of a new cold war with Russia or China, nor to the broader problems posed by America's overall propensity toward militarism. In fact, Biden does just the opposite .

The shape of things to come?

With the notable exceptions of a few anti-war Democrats like Barbara Lee, Tulsi Gabbard, Ro Khanna and Jeff Merkley, the opposition party has spent much of the Trump era turning itself into the party of war.

Meanwhile, one could envisage a future where the Republicans, under the influence of "national conservatives" such as Josh Hawley, Rand Paul, or even Trump advisers such as retired Colonel Douglas Macgregor (recently nominated to be US ambassador to Germany), becomes the party of realism and restraint abroad.

To the limited extent that President Trump has been guided by any kind of restraint (which has been capricious at best ), it has paid dividends for the United States. In the Middle East, for example, given that the United States is now largely energy-self-sufficient, it no longer needs to play policeman in that part of the world.

Fair Use Excerpt. Read the rest here .

[Nov 04, 2020] Neocons flock to Biden- It's All About Jewish Values by Kevin MacDonald

Nov 04, 2020 | www.unz.com

Neocons Flock to Biden: It's All About Jewish Values KEVIN MACDONALD OCTOBER 30, 2020 1,300 WORDS 24 COMMENTS REPLY Tweet Reddit Share Share Email Print More Bill Kristol, 2011. Credit: Gage Skidmore/Wikimedia Commons CC BY-SA 3.0

Probably the least surprising news you will hear in this election season, from Philip Weiss, " Neoconservatives are flocking to Biden (and let's forget about the Iran deal."

Neoconservatives are flocking to the Biden campaign. The DC braintrust that believes in using US military power to aid Israel in the Middle East has jumped parties before– to Clinton in '92, and back to Bush in 2000– and now they're hopping aisles to support Biden, with Bill Kristol leading the way.

Last night on an official Biden campaign webinar led by "Jewish Americans for Biden", and moderated by Ann Lewis of Democratic Majority for Israel, two prominent neocon Republicans endorsed Biden, primarily because of Trump's character posing a danger to democracy. But both neocons emphasized that Biden would be more willing to use force in the Middle East and reassured Jewish viewers that Biden will seek to depoliticize Israel support, won't necessarily return to the Iran deal and will surround himself with advisers who support Israel and believe in American military intervention.

Eliot Cohen, a Bush aide and academic , echoed the fear that Israel is being politicized. "A lot of Jews made a big mistake by taking something I was in favor of, moving the embassy to Jerusalem and obsessing about that," he said. But there was huge political risk in that: if the United States is internally divided, at war with itself, and "Israel has become a partisan issue, which it should never ever be . That's not in Israel's longterm security interest."

Biden will reverse that trend by appointing strong supporters of Israel, Cohen said.

"Joe Biden has a long record as a friend of Israel. I think we're both quite familiar with the kinds of people who will go into a Biden administration and I think we feel very comfortable that they will have a deep and abiding concern for Israel which is not going to go away."

Edelman also said that Trump has created many "dangers" in the region by not being aggressive:

"By withdrawing or threatening to withdraw US forces, by repeatedly not replying or dealing with Iranian aggression in the Persian Gulf or against Saudi oil infrastructure, he's created a sort of vacuum that is being filled in Libya by Russia and by Turkey "

Biden will work with allies and be ready to use U.S. military in the region– or as Edelman said, "to play."

"The region is a mess," Edelman said. "And yet the president continually says he wants the U.S. to withdraw from the region. The reality is that the withdrawal of US power form the region has helped create this morass of threats."

He cited three war zones in which the U.S. or proxies' bombing is essential to U.S. security, Libya, Yemen and Syria.

In Syria, "The Trump administration pulled out and said, we don't want to play here," Edelman said.

"Other forces are going to fill the vacuum created by the absence of US leadership and they won't be benign forces," Edelman said. Iran, Russia, or Turkey will come in and create a "vortex of instability that can potentially come back to haunt us" -- with terrorist attacks or the disruption of energy markets.

Cohen and Edelman opposed Obama's Iran deal, and both predicted that Biden will be hawkish on Iran.

In other words, Trump has failed the Israel Lobby because he has tried to pull our US forces from the Middle East and, although he has laid down sanctions against Iran, he has not gone to war. Of course, these are the people who promoted the ongoing disaster of the Iraq war. They are probably right that Russia and Turkey would benefit from US pulling out completely (Libya??), but where are legitimate US interests in all this? Trump ran on ending Middle East wars and getting out of the region–the original reason the neocons jumped ship (in addition to fears of a nascent Orange Hitler). Despite being president he has been unable to do so. He has been strongly opposed by the foreign policy establishment and the Pentagon -- a testament to the extent to which the US security establishment is Israel-occupied territory.

Lurking in the background of the attitudes of Cohen and Edelman is the idea that Biden would tame the forces on the left that have been so critical of Israel in recent years. With Biden they get it all: Strongly pro-Israel even to the point of initiating a war with Iran, taming the anti-Israel voices on the left (Kamala Harris with her Jewish husband s not among them), and perhaps a Senate led by Israel operative Chuck Schumer. Meanwhile the Republican Party would default to the Chamber of Commerce and the remaining neocons, and the hope of a nationally competitive GOP, much less a truly populist GOP, would die. Bill Kristol loves the prospect of a long-term Democrat domination.

https://platform.twitter.com/embed/index.html?dnt=true&embedId=twitter-widget-0&frame=false&hideCard=false&hideThread=false&id=1322199336340594688&lang=en&origin=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.unz.com%2Farticle%2Fneocons-flock-to-biden-its-all-about-jewish-values%2F&theme=light&widgetsVersion=ed20a2b%3A1601588405575&width=500px

And of course, all of these bellicose proposals are cloaked in a veneer of "Jewish values" -- not so ironic if one assumes, as is certainly the case, that promoting war for specifically Jewish interests is indeed a Jewish value.

Cohen spoke about Jewish values. He and his family belong to an orthodox synagogue and have raised four children with a religious education. "I've tried to live my life by Jewish values. One thing that's very important for Jewish Republicans. Obviously the issue of Israel is important, it's the only Jewish state, it's important to look after it and for it to thrive, but what is our approach to politics?" Jews don't believe that you Render unto God the things that are God and render unto Caesar the thing that are Caesar's and therefore not take issue with a politician's character "so long as they do what we want them to do." He said, "That's not the Jewish way." In the Book of Samuel, the king engages "in despicable behavior," and the prophet storms into his bedroom. "We believe that character matters." And this election is about character.

Okay, Trump is not a saint. But given that Biden is up to his eyeballs in scandal doesn't bother Cohen at all -- despite overwhelming documentation. So we are not supposed to care that the Biden family raked in millions by using Biden's influence to alter US foreign policy or that China could easily blackmail him into doing their bidding on trade and military issues. So in the end, it's really about what Cohen, Edelman, Kristol, et al. think is good for Israel (Jennifer Rubin and Max Boot jumped the GOP ship even before Trump was elected). Again, count me unsurprised.

And of course, the other thing is that neocons have always been on the left within the Republican Party. One might say they have attempted to not only make Israel a bi-partisan issue (their first priority) but also promoting the liberal/left social agenda, such as replacement-level non-White immigration, as a bipartisan issue -- both values strongly promoted by the mainstream Jewish community. They jumped ship mainly because Trump was promising to undo the liberal/left social agenda as well as disengage from foreign wars and US occupation of the Middle East. During the 2016 campaign, some of the strongest denunciations of Trump came from neocons (" Jewish Fear and Loathing of Donald Trump: Neocon Angst about a Fascist America" ).

If you haven't seen it, Carlson's interview with Bobulinski is damning, and the documents he refers to have been thoroughly authenticated.

https://www.dailymotion.com/embed/video/x7x4b9v


BCB232 , says: October 31, 2020 at 11:31 am GMT • 4.0 days ago

Trump kisses plenty of Kosher ass but he's a wildcard to them. Clearly, Biden can be controlled.

anarchyst , says: October 31, 2020 at 1:13 pm GMT • 3.9 days ago

Trump has been dealing with jews all of his life and knows what they are like. This is a double-edged sword for jews as he is wise to their dishonest criminality and double-dealing and is able to work around their machinations and dishonesty.
This s why (some) jews hate him. If he wanted to, he could expose them for what they truly are
To Trump's credit, he has his own security detail interspersed within his Secret Service protection team making possible harm or actions against him difficult if not impossible. A good thing

El Dato , says: October 31, 2020 at 2:48 pm GMT • 3.8 days ago
@Anon

Only if Jordan gets to have a sea port on the Med in exchange. That's a fair deal.

El Dato , says: October 31, 2020 at 2:51 pm GMT • 3.8 days ago
@BCB232

Yeah, we need more info about how Prez Kamala sees this issue.

Phibbs , says: October 31, 2020 at 4:34 pm GMT • 3.8 days ago

I truly believe that Jews are the strongest assets Satan has. They are constantly forcing us super-stupid Gentiles into wars for Israel. We have Gentile-American soldiers (Jews don't serve) facing off against my white Christian brothers, mainly to be a counter-balance to Iranian forces in the country who are battling U.S.-backed terrorists. Jews hate Russians because they are white Christians and they actually hate us white-Christians in America, too. (For now, we are simply useful idiots for them.) It is time that we Gentiles wake up and kick every single last Jew out of this country before the Jews get us all killed!

Jus' Sayin'... , says: October 31, 2020 at 5:10 pm GMT • 3.7 days ago
@Anon

Payback would be fair play. Israel forestalled its defeat in 1973 by threatening to start a nuclear war. https://www.upi.com/Defense-News/2002/09/16/Yom-Kippur-Israels-1973-nuclear-alert/64941032228992/ . It would be poetic justice if war mongering Israel were to be eliminated in a full scale nuclear war.

L. Guapo , says: October 31, 2020 at 5:11 pm GMT • 3.7 days ago

DJT has done a good job of separating the J wheat from the chaff so to speak. Unfortunately, it's the chaff that seems to have all the power money and influence. For now.

conatus , says: October 31, 2020 at 7:28 pm GMT • 3.6 days ago

Who paid for all this peace in the Middle East?
American tax money was used to
De-stabilize Iraq
De-stabilize Libya
De-stabilize Syria

Only Iran is left as a major power in the Middle East.

Let's get the draft going to get our brave boys and girls(and LGBTQ) fighting to maintain peace in the Middle East.
We ALL need to give until we can give no more.
Maybe draft exemptions for the Ivy League, someone has to tell us what to do.

Ricko , says: October 31, 2020 at 8:09 pm GMT • 3.6 days ago

Jewish promoted Critical Race Theory believes and teaches that systemic racism is the main reason why blacks commit criminal acts. Therefore the response to the disparity between White and Black crime is to alter the standards, i.e., change White expections of the Black community. Because to say to Black Americans that they must alter their behavior to meet the current standards is racist.

Samuel Krasner, the Jewish DA in Philadelphia, is aboard with this. He decriminalised shoplifting in his jurisdiction. And we now have shoplifters walking out of stores with armfuls of stolen goods whilst smiling in the cameras and saying, 'I can't be prosecuted.'

Then there is this unbelievable piece of BS legislation from Virginia: "Virginia legislature passes bill preventing cops from stopping cars with no headlights, brake lights, etc."

https://www.lawenforcementtoday.com/virginia-passes-law-that-prevents-enforcement-of-equipment-violations/

When Virginia state legislator who sponsored the bill, Patrick Hope, was asked about this by a reporter from The Daily Press he responded by saying he didn't know that police were no longer allowed to stop vehicles for not having their lights illuminated.

Patrick Hope sponsored a bill without actually knowing what was in it! If you think at this stage that Patrick Hope is a hopeless idiot he gets worse.

When the importance of working brake lights on vehicles was mentioned to Hope he said: "The brake lights -- I'm not concerned about that as a safety issue -- but I can certainly see how headlights could be of concern ."

A Virginia state legislator is dumb enough to believe that brake lights have no importance whatsoever to road safety in his state.

The modern United States? You couldn't f ** king make it up! By the way, who are the majority people driving defective cars in Virginia? Blacks and other newly arrived minorities, of course.

Would the local authorities in any part of Israel decriminalise shoplifting for a minority demographic in their area? Not likely. How about Samuel Krasner, would he recommend that crime be legalised for minorities in the state of Israel? No, he wouldn't. He's not stupid. He would not do anything that would destroy his native country.

Would an utter idiot like Hope be allowed to introduce insane life endangering legislation in Israel? No, his Jew financial backers would not allow that.

But, Trump or no Trump, all this is coming to your local area of America very soon.

It's amazing. It's astounding. A cursory look shows there are Jews behind every act of destruction against White America and its founding culture.

The Jews are driving the de-educating of American youth, they've staffed 90% of the media with lying, immoral and shameless journalists and installed unintelligent and easily corruptible politicians in both US political parties.

As we see with Hope, the Jews have made possible state legislators who are so stupid that they are probably suffering from mental health issues. What's very sad is that there's hardly a peep from the great American public against them.

The Jews who first suggested making anti-semitism a crime in the West actually said to their comtemperies at the time that it was just a "pipe dream." They never actually thought in their wildest dreams that Western people and politicians would accept the lie that anti-Jewishness was systemic in the West and needed laws to counteract it.

But, unbelievably for them, they easily got their anti-Semitism legislation enacted. And then, enboldened, they drove ahead with Holocaust denial and all the other BS.

Now, as we see with the headlights, brake lights and the decriminalising of shoplifting for Blacks, the Jews have become viciously emboldened. They've learned that European provenanced Whites will accept any and all Bull S ** t that is thrown at them.

Shame on all Americans for sitting idly by whilst the tiny Jew demographic urines on all that your forefathers built and fought for.

If your descents are Islamist slaves policed by Blacks in the latter half of this century (all ruled from on-high by the Jews) they'll deserve it. They'll deserve it because their fathers and grandfathers were idle and lazy cowards who sat on their butts while the great inheritance which they were bequeathed was pulled out from under them.

BTW: Who had secured a vantage point in New York in September 2001 from which to watch the planes fly into the buildings? And who then danced and cheered energetically as the planes hit the buildings and killed 2,977 people?

Surely, you might think, it was Arabic Islamists, or Pakistanis, or some other race of Muslims.

You'd be wrong if you thought this.

The correct answer is "five Israelis". Yes, it was five Jews who danced and sang as 2,977 Americans were murdered in cold blood.

https://www.heraldscotland.com/news/12768362.five-israelis-were-seen-filming-as-jet-liners-ploughed-into-the-twin-towers-on-september-11-2001/

Verymuchalive , says: November 2, 2020 at 8:53 am GMT • 2.0 days ago
@Lot el. Cursed with the loss of thousands of American lives resulting from such actions. Cursed with the loss of tens of thousand of non-American lives from such actions. All this for a shitty little country with which America doesn't even have a defence treaty.

Our Steadfast Ally ? The USS Liberty, Jonathan Pollard and the Israeli selling of American defence technology to China immediately spring to mind. There is no defence treaty between America and Israel. Israel is not America's ally. Rather it is a parasite on the American body politic. Either Americans rip the parasite off their body, or it will eventually kill America.

[Oct 25, 2020] The Bidens "Did" Ukraine, There Was also Iraq And Serbia.

Oct 25, 2020 | www.unz.com

Agent76 , says: October 25, 2020 at 6:03 pm GMT

Oct 24, 2020 Serbia & Iraq: Joe Biden's history of regime change wars

The Bidens "Did" Ukraine, There Was Iraq And Serbia.

https://www.youtube.com/embed/HqEJFduRBDM?feature=oembed

[Oct 19, 2020] Hunter Biden's Laptop -Is Not Some Russian Disinformation Campaign-; DNI Ratcliffe Slams Schiff

Oct 19, 2020 | www.zerohedge.com

It appears the "Russia, Russia, Russia" cries from Adam Schiff and his dutiful media peons is dead (we can only hope) as Director of National Intel John Ratcliffe just confirmed to Foxx Business' Maria Bartiromo that:

"Hunter Biden's laptop is not part of some Russian disinformation campaign."

As Politico's Quint Forgey details (@QuintForgey) , DNI Ratcliffe is asked directly whether accusations leveled against the Bidens in recent days are part of a Russian disinformation effort.

He says no:

"Let me be clear. The intelligence community doesn't believe that because there is no intelligence that supports that."

" We have shared no intelligence with Chairman Schiff or any other member of Congress that Hunter Biden's laptop is part of some Russian disinformation campaign. It's simply not true. "

"And this is exactly what I said would I stop when I became the director of national intelligence, and that's people using the intelligence community to leverage some political narrative."

"And in this case, apparently Chairman Schiff wants anything against his preferred political candidate to be deemed as not real and as using the intelligence community or attempting to use the intelligence community to say there's nothing to see here."

"Don't drag the intelligence community into this. Hunter Biden's laptop is not part of some Russian disinformation campaign. And I think it's clear that the American people know that."

Of course, this 'fact' from 'intelligence' is unlikely to stop the "emails are Russian" narrative growing ever louder as MSM attempt to distract from the actual content of the emails. As Caitlin Johnstone noted:

So "the emails are Russian" narrative serves the interests of political convenience, partisan media ratings, and the national security state's pre-planned agenda to continue escalating against Russia as part of its slow motion third world war against nations which refuse to bow to US dictates, and you've got essentially no critical mainstream news coverage putting the brakes on any of it. This means this narrative is going to become mainstream orthodoxy and treated as an established fact, despite the fact that there is no actual, tangible evidence for it.

Joe Biden could stand in the middle of Fifth Avenue and shoot somebody, and the mainstream press would crucify any journalist who so much as tweeted about it. Very little journalism is going into vetting and challenging him, and a great deal of the energy that would normally be doing so is going into ensuring that he slides right into the White House.

If the mainstream news really existed to tell you the truth about what's going on, everyone would know about every questionable decision that Joe Biden has ever made, Russiagate would never have happened, we'd all be acutely aware of the fact that powerful forces are pushing us into increasingly aggressive confrontations with two nuclear-armed nations, and Trump would be grilled about Yemen in every press conference.

But the mainstream news does not exist to tell you the truth about the world. The mainstream news exists to advance the interests of its wealthy owners and the status quo upon which they have built their kingdoms. That's why it's so very, very important that we find ways to break away from it and share information with each other that isn't tainted by corrupt and powerful interests.

https://lockerdome.com/lad/13084989113709670?pubid=ld-dfp-ad-13084989113709670-0&pubo=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.zerohedge.com&rid=www.zerohedge.com&width=890

* * *

As we detailed previously, as the Hunter Biden laptop scandal threatens to throw the 2020 election into chaos with what appears to be solid, undisputed evidence of high-level corruption by former Vice President Joe Biden and his son Hunter, the same crowd which peddled the Trump-Russia hoax is now suggesting that Russia is behind it all .

To wit, House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff, who swore on National television that he had evidence Trump was colluding with Russia - now says that President Trump is handing the Kremlin a "propaganda coup from Vladimir Putin."

https://platform.twitter.com/embed/index.html?dnt=false&embedId=twitter-widget-1&frame=false&hideCard=false&hideThread=false&id=1317432785070706688&lang=en&origin=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.zerohedge.com%2Fpolitical%2Fhunter-bidens-laptop-not-some-russian-disinformation-campaign-dni-ratcliffe-slams-schiff&siteScreenName=zerohedge&theme=light&widgetsVersion=ed20a2b%3A1601588405575&width=550px

Senator Chris Murphy (D-CT) has gone full tin-foil , suggesting that Giuliani was a 'key target' of 'Kremlin constructed anti-Biden propaganda.'

2/ Russia knew it had to play a different game than 2016. So it built an operation to cull virulently pro-Trump Americans as pseudo-assets, so blind in their allegiance to Trump that they'll willingly launder Kremlin constructed anti-Biden propaganda.

Guiliani was a key target.

-- Chris Murphy (@ChrisMurphyCT) October 17, 2020

Headlines in major publications are perhaps even more conspiratorial:

And of course, propagandists are doing their thing...

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Yet, if one looks at the actual facts of the case - in particular, that Hunter Biden appears to have dropped his own laptops off at a computer repair shop, signed a service ticket , and the shop owner approached the FBI first and Rudy Giuliani last after Biden failed to pick them up, the left's latest Russia conspiracy theory is quickly debunked .

* * *

Authored by Larry C Johnson via Sic Semper Tyrannis (emphasis ours)

This is the story of an American patriot, an honorable man, John Paul Mac Issac, who tried to do the right thing and is now being unfairly and maliciously slandered as an agent of foreign intelligence, specifically Russia. He is not an agent or spy for anyone. He is his own man. How do I know? I have known his dad for more than 20 years. I've known John Paul's dad as Mac. Mac is a decorated Vietnam Veteran, who flew gunships in Vietnam. And he continued his military service with an impeccable record until he retired as an Air Force Colonel. The crews of those gunships have an annual reunion and Mac usually takes John Paul along, who volunteers his computer and video skills to record and compile the stories of those brave men who served their country in a difficult war.

This story is very simple – Hunter Biden dropped off three computers with liquid damage at a repair shop in Wilmington, Delaware on April 12, 2019. The owner, John Mac Issac, examined the three and determined that one was beyond recovery, one was okay and the data on the harddrive of the third could be recovered. Hunter signed the service ticket and John Paul Mac Issac repaired the hard drive and down loaded the data . During this process he saw some disturbing images and a number of emails that concerned Ukraine, Burisma, China and other issues . With the work completed, Mr. Mac Issac prepared an invoice, sent it to Hunter Biden and notified him that the computer was ready to be retrieved. H unter did not respond . In the ensuing four months (May, June, July and August), Mr. Mac Issac made repeated efforts to contact Hunter Biden. Biden never answered and never responded. More importantly, Biden stiffed John Paul Mac Issac–i.e., he did not pay the bill.

When the manufactured Ukraine crisis surfaced in August 2019, John Paul realized he was sitting on radioactive material that might be relevant to the investigation. After conferring with his father, Mac and John Paul decided that Mac would take the information to the FBI office in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Mac walked into the Albuquerque FBI office and spoke with an agent who refused to give his name. Mac explained the material he had, but was rebuffed by the FBI. He was told basically, get lost . This was mid-September 2019.

Two months passed and then, out of the blue, the FBI contacted John Paul Mac Issac. Two FBI agents from the Wilmington FBI office–Joshua Williams and Mike Dzielak–came to John Paul's business . He offered immediately to give them the hard drive, no strings attached. Agents Williams and Dzielak declined to take the device .

Two weeks later, the intrepid agents called and asked to come and image the hard drive. John Paul agreed but, instead of taking the hard drive or imaging the drive, they gave him a subpoena. It was part of a grand jury proceeding but neither agent said anything about the purpose of the grand jury. John Paul complied with the subpoena and turned over the hard drive and the computer.

In the ensuing months, starting with the impeachment trial of President Trump, he heard nothing from the FBI and knew that none of the evidence from the hard drive had been shared with President Trump's defense team.

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The lack of action and communication with the FBI led John Paul to make the fateful decision to contact Rudy Giuliani's office and offer a copy of the drive to the former mayor. We now know that Rudy accepted John Paul's offer and that Rudy's team shared the information with the New York Post.

John Paul Mac Issac is not responsible for the emails, images and videos recovered from Hunter Biden's computer. He was hired to do a job, he did the job and submitted an invoice for the work. Hunter Biden, for some unexplained reason, never responded and never asked for the computer. But that changed last Tuesday, October 13, 2020. A person claiming to be Hunter Biden's lawyer called John Paul Mac Issac and asked for the computer to be returned. Too late. That horse had left the barn and was with the FBI.

John Paul, acting under Delaware law, understood that Hunter's computer became the property of his business 90 days after it had been abandoned.

At no time did John Paul approach any media outlet or tabloid offering to sell salacious material . A person of lesser character might have tried to profit. But that is not the essence of John Paul Mac Issac. He had information in his possession that he learned, thanks to events subsequent to receiving the computer for a repair job, was relevant to the security of our nation. He did what any clear thinking American would do–he, through his father, contacted the FBI. When the FBI finally responded to his call for help, John cooperated fully and turned over all material requested .

The failure here is not John Paul's . He did his job. The FBI dropped the ball and, by extension, the Department of Justice. Sadly, this is becoming a disturbing, repeating theme–the FBI through incompetence or malfeasance is not doing its job.

Any news outlet that is publishing the damnable lie that John Paul is part of some subversive effort to interfere in the United States Presidential election is on notice. That is slander and defamation. Fortunately, the evidence from Hunter Biden's computer is in the hands of the FBI and Rudy Giuliani and, I suspect, the U.S. Senate. Those with the power to do something must act. John Paul Mac Issac's honor is intact. We cannot say the same for those government officials who have a duty to deal with this information.

* * *

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[Oct 19, 2020] The neocon/NATO aggressive expansionism and anti-Russian hysteria has many purposes, but one is surely domestic repression: to gaslight and cause fear-the-foreign-bogeyman trauma among the American and British people

Highly recommended!
Notable quotes:
"... The neocon/NATO aggressive expansionism has many purposes, but one is surely domestic repression: to gaslight and cause fear-the-foreign-bogeyman trauma among the American and British people as a whole and make most of them become docile and lose their critical thinking skills and their ability to analyze their own societies. ..."
"... One of the best ways to lobotomize the publics of the US and UK is to very gradually impose martial law in the name of protecting national security and ensuring peace and harmony at home. ..."
Oct 19, 2020 | www.moonofalabama.org

Dao Gen ,

Dao Gen , Oct 17 2020 18:05 utc | 19

The neocon/NATO aggressive expansionism has many purposes, but one is surely domestic repression: to gaslight and cause fear-the-foreign-bogeyman trauma among the American and British people as a whole and make most of them become docile and lose their critical thinking skills and their ability to analyze their own societies.

One of the best ways to lobotomize the publics of the US and UK is to very gradually impose martial law in the name of protecting national security and ensuring peace and harmony at home.

After several color revolutions succeeded, the Russiagate/Spygate op was carried out in the US, with British assistance. This op has been largely successful, though there has been limited resistance against its whole fake edifice as well as with the logic of Cold War2.0. Nevertheless, Spygate has shocked many tens of millions of Dems into a stupor, while millions more are dazed and manipulated by the Chinese bogeyman being manufactured by Trump.

The most dangerous result of the martial law lite mentality caused by Spygate and its MSM purveyors is the growing support for censorship of free speech coming mostly from the Dems, such as Schiff and Warner. The danger inherent in this trend became very clear when FaceBook and Twitter engaged in massive and unprecedented arbitrary censorship of the New York Post and of various Trump-related accounts.

This is the kind of thing you do during Stage 1 of a coup. Surely it was at least in part an experiment to see how various power points in the US would respond. Even though Twitter ended the censorship later, it was probably a successful experiment designed to gauge reactions and areas of resistance.

In November, there could be further, more serious experiments/ops. If so, the current expansionist movements being made and planned by the US and NATO may well be integral parts of a new non-democratic model of "American-style democracy" -- not constitution-based but "rules-based."

[Oct 06, 2020] -Joe Biden's 'war economy' policies are a radical break with the status quo.- Telegraph - Sic Semper Tyrannis

Oct 06, 2020 | turcopolier.typepad.com

"Joe Biden's 'war economy' policies are a radical break with the status quo." Telegraph


"Bidenomics is a heady brew. The Democrats' $7.9 trillion blast of extra spending is a step beyond Roosevelt's New Deal. It mimics the Keynesian expansion of the Second World War and consciously aims to run the economy at red-hot speeds of growth.

If enacted in full, it is large enough to lift the US economy out of the zero-rate deflationary trap of the last decade and entirely reshape the social and financial landscape.

The stimulus will be corralled inside the closed US economy by Joe Biden's protectionist "Buy America" policies, his industrial strategy, and his carbon border tax (i.e. disguised tariffs against China). This limits leakage.

It is a laboratory of sorts for a post-globalisation experiment in what used to be called "reflation in one country" – before the free flow of goods and capital emasculated sovereign governments.

"It's quite likely that, just as in World War II, when we push down on the economic accelerator, we will find that we have been running on one cylinder up until no w," said the Roosevelt Institute, now advisors to the Biden campaign .

This is why Moody's Analytics estimates that Bidenomics accompanied by a Democrat clean sweep of Congress would lift American GDP by an extra 4.8pc, add an extra seven million jobs, and raise per capita income by an extra $4,800 over the next four years , compared to a clean sweep by Donald Trump. Economic growth would rocket to 7.7pc in 2022." Telegraph ------------- Evans-Pritchard, the author of this piece baldly declares that the Trump tax cut failed to stimulate economic growth and that a clean sweep by the Democrats in November would lead to massive GDP growth and a reduction in present economic inequalities in American society. I will be very interested in your comments. pl

https://www.telegraph.co.uk/business/2020/10/06/joe-bidens-war-economy-policies-radical-break-status-quo/


Fred , 06 October 2020 at 12:19 PM

That's a fine read Col. Thank goodness that after 47 years as a politician, including 8 years as VP - during which TARP did what? - Biden finally has a plan to Tax and Spend that beats all the Tax and Spend plans that went before this one.

Just what is this getting spent on - the same things Obama-Biden promised, "green" (the color of money) energy, solar charging stations and 1.5 million energy efficient homes (didn't the Housing bubble cause a little economic problem?), 'educaiton'! I wonder if that includes teaching us all critical race theory? and "infrastructure". And here I thought broken records were out of style.

Where's the money coming from? According to Oxfordeconomics, which the Guardian links to, Biden's raising taxes, but it won't lower consumer spending:
".... we estimate an overall multiplier of 0.25 for the individual provisions in Biden's tax package. So, for every dollar of tax increase, households would reduce their spending by 25 cents. As such, while the proposal would generate a substantial revenue inflow, we don'tbelieve it would significantly constrain consumer spending."

So what is the decline in corporate spending if you raise corporate taxes? The economists at Oxfordeconomics conveniently left that out, nor did they eplicitly tell you that a decade of tax revenue will still leave you with 60 years of tax burden from Joe's spending.

"On the corporate tax front, the most significant revenue raisers are:•A 7ppt increase in the statutory corporate tax rate to 28%, which would raise $1.3tn over 10years.•An increase in taxes on foreign earnings.•A 15% minimum tax on global book income.•The elimination of several real estate investment tax preferences." (Oooh look, Trump's screwed! Yeah! I wonder how all those REITs look with that?)

Another unasked question: Who is going to do all that economy stimulating work if there is a national lockdown due to Covid?

GEORGE CHAMBERLAIN , 06 October 2020 at 12:20 PM

what's new?

"LaRouche's comments were prompted by an article published in the Telegraph on May 19 by British intelligence stringer Ambrose Evans-Pritchard, whose experience in orchestrating U.S. impeachment drives for the British goes back to his attacks on President Bill Clinton. Evans-Pritchard, on the eve of Trump's first trip abroad as President, is spreading the black propaganda line that Trump might already be incapacitated, in much the same way as President Richard Nixon was incapacitated by then-Defense Secretary James Schlesinger, who "instructed U.S. military officials to ignore any order from the Oval Office to use nuclear weapons."

Evans-Pritchard asserts that the key to overthrowing Trump is to pull Republican support away from him, which he admits is still strong. But what happens next? He quotes Sir Jeremy Greenstock, former British UN ambassador and now chairman at Gatehouse Advisory Partners: "America can be very powerful if it decides to act hard. Xi Jinping and Putin will probably wait and see whether Trump self-destructs." Evans-Pritchard then raises the question: How will Trump behave "when the special prosecutor [Robert Mueller] starts to let rip with a volley of subpoenas."

Leith , 06 October 2020 at 12:23 PM

I like the idea of a Carbon Border Tax. Or at least the one proposed by the EU, as I have not seen Biden's proposal. It has never made sense to me that we import from countries with low environmental standards when our own manufacturers are handicapped.

But unless Biden can carry Democratic Senatorial challengers against GOP incumbents it ain't gonna happen. It will be stalled in the Senate. There is no way McConnell will even allow it on the Senate floor.

Stag Deflated , 06 October 2020 at 12:40 PM

This thinking has been wrong, repeatedly so, for the last 10 years. The idea that there is just one more pedal to push down to jumpstart the economy belies the truth that we have experienced the most accommodative and expansive monetary policy on a global level in modern times.

Aside from the lack of efficacy, which I may look to discuss at length later on, there is another striking thing about this plan, and that is how it will be paid for. The reason is not the traditional "where will the money come from" I know where it will come from, cheap US debt, but it tells us two key things. The first is that the functional ideas of Modern Monetary Theory (MMT) that you can basically just issue debt and have your central bank both monetize it and keep the interest payments low and use that to fund largely unlimited government spending have for the most part been endorsed by those on the left as a mechanism to deliver on their grand plans. The second thing that is striking though is what they want to spend the money on, which is military spending and infrastructure and not healthcare and a green new deal. This calls into question what alignment there is on the cadres of the left or the possibility that starting with infrastructure is a way to run cover to expand these fantasy economics to social projects without reorienting the economy towards their achievement.

Veg , 06 October 2020 at 12:48 PM

Evans-Pritchard's talents are wasted on economic commentary. He writes well, but in the breathless tones of a failed thriller writer. His entire worldview is based on the notion that it is always two minutes to midnight. It's a shame that they put all of his stuff behind a paywall.

Maybe if Biden's plan is approved we will finally see the inflation that Wall Street and its media minions have been whining about for the past forty years.

I have no doubt that the collapsing pocket that is Conservative Inc will luxuriate back on the familiar loser's ground of "fiscal responsibility."

Biden's plan, such as it is, simply marries the essence of Trump's nationalist policies with Great Society spending levels. Like so much of his platform, it is designed to keep the progressives on the plantation until Nov 3 and not one minute beyond.

Deap , 06 October 2020 at 12:51 PM

Sure it will. The devil is in the details. When has any Democrat economic plan ever produced intended results. First they have to confess what went wrong with their trillion dollar "War on Poverty" that now requires another trillion to pretend to clean up that grotesquely distorted mess.

Until they confess to their sins of the past, they are doomed to repeat them. How are they going to remedy their decades of teacher union K1-2 fail turning out entire generations of dysfunctional illiterates who are somehow going to be absorbed into this dynamite economy.

They are sitting in the back room smoking dope and spinning tales. What I hear is wealth confiscation and/or turning on the printing presses. Time for a good recap of Obama's initial "Green Jobs Revolution" from his first term - who did those promise work out and why are we having to undo the piles of excrement Biden First Term left behind.

I have a bad case of deja vu When in fact the Trump Tweaking was paying long term dividends, until the deep state hijacked covid to destroy any possible Trump bragging rights. Never forget Nancy Pelosi tearing up Trump's SOTU address and declaring they were all lies -- and then carrying out her covid porn agenda to make sure she was proven correct.

Remember the three generation rule - all revolutionary and planned economies always fail by the third generation. Soviet Union, Margaret Thatcher's warning, Cuba, etc ......if all the wealth in the world was redistributed, it would be back in similar hands three generations later. Societies always stratify, even since the Sumerians.

America is unique primarily because of the mobility it offers between the strata by its relatively free market system. Don't mess with it. Democrat's heavy handed planned utopia is a nightmare.

j. casey , 06 October 2020 at 01:10 PM

"Bidenomics" is comedy gold, man. Here's another one: President "Printing Press" Harris.

A. Pols , 06 October 2020 at 01:14 PM

Yup, and I've got some ocean front property in Arizona for sale. Sounds very hopey changey to me.

Diana Croissant , 06 October 2020 at 01:17 PM

I am no economist. However, I am not in debt. I am not wealthy, but I have all I need and want. I've worked very hard during my life and enjoyed my jobs because they were suited to my training and kislls. My retirement funds keep me comfortable. My two sons are doing well in our current economy. That's, of course, a self-centered view of the situation.

But, with that in mind, I say this: "beware of Greeks bearing gifts." (I know Biden is not Greek, but I hope you get my point.)

I am also remembering the Obama administration. I may receive only an Obama phone and an EBT card.

blue peacock , 06 October 2020 at 01:27 PM

Ambrose Evans-Pritchard is generally a very astute writer. However, on economics and national fiscal policies and central banking he has bought into the Davos sophistry that defies common sense for over a decade.

An example of this sophistry is this line from the passage in your post - "..lift the US economy out of the zero-rate deflationary trap of the last decade...". Ask an average American if they've seen any price deflation in their rents or house prices, their kid's tuition, their health care premiums, their cost of pharmaceuticals, the cost of tacos at their neighborhood taqueria, the cost of getting their shirt cleaned, over the past decade and they'll laugh at you. The cost of living of average Americans have risen and that is the real living experience. But of course if you're Ben Bernanke or Mario Draghi or Jerome Powell or Ms. Lagarde then we are in a "deflationary trap" and they should print more and more money that gets shipped first to their friends on Wall St. The Party of Davos as Jack called it.

Under the government enforced lockdown, how many trillions has the US federal government under the Trump administration borrowed from future generations in the first and now the second stimulus waiting for approval? How many trillions did Jerome Powell print up and send to his friends at Blackrock and Citadel?

GDP is a useless indicator IMO. Digging trenches and filling them up will raise GDP. A very important indicator however is productivity growth. That has been lagging for many years. Another are median household income & wealth, which has also been lagging. What we've seen in the US is a dramatic increase in wealth inequality between the top 0.1% vs the bottom 80% over the past 50 years and this curve continues to accelerate - second order derivative!! The second is the level of systemic debt across all sectors - individuals, corporate and government at all levels that has continuously risen over 50 years increasing systemic leverage to a point larger than during the civil war and WW II. This has occurred under both parties and the Trump presidency has actually increased it despite the rhetoric. Compare the Balance of Trade relative to the soundbites.

https://d3fy651gv2fhd3.cloudfront.net/embed/?s=ustbtot&v=202010061328V20200908&d1=20101009&h=300&w=600

A systematic restructuring of our economy away from financialization, away from bailouts of the oligarchy, away from unprecedented market concentration, away from untrammeled credit expansion to back previous credit losses and having a monetary authority with a singular focus on sound money is what's necessary. But that's not gonna happen under either Trump or Biden as it will gore the ox of the Party of Davos whose interests is what both sides primarily cater to. More debt-fueled government spending always ends up as socialism for the oligarchy which is exactly what we've had for decades. It is an economic truism that as productivity of debt continually declines, economic productivity also declines. That's the trap we are in!

LondonBob , 06 October 2020 at 01:46 PM

Been very happy with my gold investments these past two years and will stick with them thanks, Biden would supercharge them.

Longer term I am looking to have most of my money in Asia, Russian oil companies also seem to like drilling for oil, rather than desperately trying to be anything else than producing oil like BP and the rest. Demographics are dire for most of the West and the US is likely to continue transitioning in to a Latin American style country. People have been well conditioned in to not talking about such things but no point talking about the increasing economic dysfunction without talking about the underlying cause. A massive increase in immigration will lead to a surge in inequality, anemic economic growth, fiscal deficits and a decline in gdp per capita.

Time to start think about investments the way a well to do Latin would.

BillWade , 06 October 2020 at 01:57 PM

Well, Biden has to get elected first, we'll see. Carbon taxes, hmmm - another way to destroy the middle-class?

Something to think about is the European Central Bank, they are a meeting late this month with "experts" to determine if they will go to a digital currency. The ECB might then decide the "experts" are right and go full digital on Jan 1st, 2021. We might see a whole lot of Euro money coming into the USA, hope so. However, the Federal Reserve has not been printing any new bank notes so you'll have trouble finding crisp bills for Christmas gifts.

Oilman2 , 06 October 2020 at 02:10 PM

IMO, based on the debt current and future we are loading on the backs of our children, it matters not a whit which of the paths are chosen. Both will end in destruction of said debt by some method - because you can only load so much on horseback and still ride. As we stand now, we are walking alongside a swaybacked packhorse already. Closing off the country, where the only growth has been in the services sector for decades, makes sense in what universe?

Raise taxes? They have only ever increased in my lifetime, my fathers and his. At what point does the Boston Tea Party repeat? From where I sit, everything either party does is only adding fuel to a coming conflagration, as nothing is actually paid for - a ledger entry is aggregated and we march on. The piper will get paid, as he has the children...

tedrichard , 06 October 2020 at 02:32 PM

1.socialism and keynesian economics as a viable theory dead dead right now....today and politicians know it
2. central banks are trapped at zero bound interest rates with no way under heretofore main stream economic theories to stimulate their respective economies
3. politicians are largely dumb as a bag of hammers with not a shred of understanding what to do other than to listen to think tanks warmed over rehashed ideas that have not worked in the past and won't now.
4. what biden is proposing is MMT with communist thomas piketty theory disguised as classical keynesian nonsense being sold to a public almost as dumb as those doing the selling
5. in order to make this works they will have to institute guranteed basic income for the umpteen millions of people who will NEVER work again under this policy of bullshit
6. and lastly to ensure NO ONE can escape this trap which will evolve into an UGLY neo feudalism for 99% of the populace this team of genuinely EVIL people will have to CANCEL ALL paper money FORCING everyone to have a bank account for using digital money THE ONLY money that can exist if this comes to pass. banks loves this as it gives them a cut of all the action
7.as a result taxes will be anything they want and YOU have no escape or recourse whatsoever
8. say the wrong thing, think the wrong thing and your economic life under digital money will be cancelled placing you into destitution and death
9. this is a recipe for slavery on a gigantic scale ensuring the 1/10 of 1% can rule without disturbance forever
10 revolution will be the only option at that point and since the police and military will continue to be paid by the state it will be bloody

let see you pl print this

Deap , 06 October 2020 at 04:22 PM

On the other hand, if this scheme promises to bring back the Jimmy Carter 14% interest rates on CD's for us retired folks, I say bring it on. Everyone else will just have to deal with the economic rubble later on their own.

I just need another good 15 years or so myself. In other words, never believe old people when it comes to managing the US economy- our goals are selfish and very short term. So like, what's in this for meeeeeee?

Deap , 06 October 2020 at 04:27 PM

Biden must have listened to AOC for this fiscal policy advice. Bring back chicken coops and victory gardens, and turn in your scrap metal because we are WAR.

Bobo , 06 October 2020 at 05:04 PM

What in God's name is Biden having a Brit pushing his economic plan. We all know they embellish everything which then falls apart into pieces. Yes, Fred I remember those +14% interest rates I paid on my mortgage and still kick myself for not taking the 100k down payment and putting it into a 14% 30 year CD and renting. But then we all have those memories. Sure would not want my grandchildren paying those rates on a 500k mortgage as it would kill the real estate business and this country.
Sleepy Joe will be ready for the assisted living center by year two and we would be stuck with Checkbook Harris, UGH. Vote for the Bullcrapper that gets things done.

Les Priest , 06 October 2020 at 05:05 PM

Ahem; This has been done before: After Hitler was elected in 1933; He slammed the borders shut to money transfer, then started building the autobahn. It worked, Germany came out of the slump. Of course, Hitler then moved on to building planes & tanks. Also, Modern Monetary theory says you can run the printing presses & print money like mad, as long as that paper is going into a real, working economy, it gets recycled. That does not describe the current 'developed world' economy; the FIRE economy (finance, insurance, real estate) has eaten it's own tail. When all the other assets have jacked up half way to the moon, there will be another gold rush (same as 1930s) & my shack in northern BC will shake with all the helicopters flying around to work up new gold mines.

English Outsider , 06 October 2020 at 06:46 PM

Candidate Donald Trump's 2016 programme was clear. Bring industry back home. Ditto the troops. Ensure an adequate defence. Drain the swamp.

Looked good. I hadn't realised that his main achievement would be somewhat simpler. Stay functioning in office in the face of the most dangerous series of attacks on an American President that can have been seen since the early nineteenth century.

So clearly he's going to need another term in office to get on with all the things he should have been able to get on with in the first.


Candidate Joe Biden was, I thought at first, stealing part of the Trump 2016 programme. Bring industry back home. Turns out not - as far as I can see America will remain the most heavily industrialised country going. But, as in my own country, much of the industry will still be abroad. With the jobs.

As with my own country Biden's America will be environmentally virtuous. It'll hit some good targets. It'll not use as much fossil fuel. Yesterday's heavy polluters - the coal mines and steel mills - won't pollute any more.

Fake. Again as with my own country the dirty industries we still rely on will still be roaring full steam ahead. Coal will still be mined. Steel will still be produced. But elsewhere.

So Candidate Joe Biden will not be the man to put that part of the Trump 2016 programme into action. He'll be the man who continues with the fake environmentalism we've already seen so much of. Naturally, if the heavy industry is outsourced so is our pollution. Doesn't look that clever a trick to me, even if it fools the eco-warriors.

[Oct 06, 2020] In backing Biden, the leftist 'resistance' to Trump is perpetuating illegal US invasions wars, handing victory to the neocons -- RT Op-ed

Oct 06, 2020 | www.rt.com

In backing Biden, the leftist 'resistance' to Trump is perpetuating illegal US invasions & wars, & handing victory to the neocons Michael Rectenwald Michael Rectenwald

is an author of ten books, including the most recent, Beyond Woke . He was Professor of Liberal Arts at NYU from 2008 through 2019. Follow him on Twitter @TheAntiPCProf 6 Oct, 2020 17:17 Get short URL In backing Biden, the leftist 'resistance' to Trump is perpetuating illegal US invasions & wars, & handing victory to the neocons A supporter of Democratic U.S. presidential nominee Joe Biden wears a Captain America costume during a gathering outside Perez Art Museum before his arrival for a town hall event in Miami, Florida, U.S., October 5, 2020 © REUTERS / Marco Bello 31 Follow RT on RT Trump calls the Iraqi invasion 'a disaster,' wants to end 'endless wars,' and bring US troops home. It's this that has fueled the deep state's attempts to remove him from office by any means possible. The hawks want Biden to win.

In a recent op-ed on RT, I outlined the puzzling and ironic configuration that is the anti-Trump 'resistance.' But I didn't explore one important 'interest group' within a 'deep state' intent on destroying Trump's presidency at all costs -- namely, the neocon hawks of both major political parties and the military and intelligence establishments that defy strict party affiliation.

This contingent includes members of top military brass and intelligence officers , of course, but also military and intelligence contractors, including those employed by the permanent bureaucracy to foil Trump's first run for the presidency by attempting to tie him to "Russian collusion ."

Condemn Trump all you want. It's quite fashionable and facile to do so. The penchant has long since leaked across the Atlantic via the US and international media establishments. But critics must be either uninformed or disingenuous to liken Trump to Hitler . Hitler was, after all, a fascist strong man and supremacist intent on militarism and world expansionism. And Trump is nothing of the sort.

READ MORE Joe Biden isn't a foreign policy guru. He's a Stepford wife repeating 'War Party' talking points Joe Biden isn't a foreign policy guru. He's a Stepford wife repeating 'War Party' talking points The Trump Doctrine

Quite the contrary, Trump wants no part of expansionism. He has insisted that he deplores the endless wars in the Middle East and Afghanistan . Trump has been removing troops from both regions since his presidency began. And he's reportedly been foiled in efforts for a complete withdrawal by his generals . But now he may be prepared to flout their prerogatives and take matters into his own hands, if given a second term.

While Trump touts a strengthened military , the Trump Doctrine involves a particular brand of populist American nationalism . This includes a foreign policy stemming from 19th-century Republican politics . Those who have subscribed to this political position have been traditionally non-interventionist, while demanding that a premium be laid on national self-determination, the protection of national sovereignty via strong borders, and the promotion of national self-interest over international or global entanglements.

Trump has suggested that the military brass wants to start wars to enrich military contractors.

The hue and cry coming from the political establishment over Trump's foreign military policy is a thin scrim to cover for the interests of the military industrial complex. And the interests of the military industrial complex are for its own expansion and the profits that derive from it.

ALSO ON RT.COM The Rock may back Biden, but most celebrity endorsements are career opportunism which is why they NEVER come out for Republicans Why the hawks want Biden

Trump's foreign policy on the limited use of military force runs counter to those of the Bush-Cheney and Obama-Biden administrations. Both of these followed the orders of neocon hawks. Shocking his left-wing base, Obama retained many of Bush's top cabinet members, including war hawk Defense Secretary Robert Gates. And, of course, then-Senator Joe Biden (D-DE) voted in favor of and championed the invasion of Iraq in 2002.

The Obama administration not only continued the Bush campaigns in Iraq and Afghanistan, it extended them with record-breaking bombings in Afghanistan, Iraq, Syria, Somalia, Yemen, Pakistan, and Libya. Recall that it was Obama who murdered, via a drone bomb, sixteen-year-old US citizen Abdulrahman al-Awlaki. Abdulrahman was the son of alleged al-Qaeda fighter (and American citizen) Anwar Awlaki, who Obama had bombed two weeks earlier, in Yemen. In fairness it must be noted that a US raid in Yemen resulted in the death of Abdulrahman's 8-year-old sister in 2017. But it was Obama who exploded the conflict in Yemen.

READ MORE Trump-Biden debate put US democracy on display – we're now little more than the world's laughing stock armed with nukes Trump-Biden debate put US democracy on display – we're now little more than the world's laughing stock armed with nukes

The Obama-Biden international adventurism extended to the invasion of Libya and the assassination of Muammar Gaddafi, an escapade that destabilized that country and led directly to the arming of jihadists. Under Obama, the Pentagon and CIA directly armed and trained Syrian "rebels" fighting Bashar Assad, many of whom then grew into the ISIS caliphate. A 2016 iconic headline in the Los Angeles Times said it all: "In Syria, militias armed by the Pentagon fight those armed by the CIA ." It is interesting to note that it was Trump who ended the CIA's training of the so-called "moderate" Syrian rebels whose intent was the toppling Assad's government.

Obama was elected in 2008 on his promise to end Bush's war in Iraq, a conflict he said he opposed from the outset . Instead, Obama and his war hawks expanded this war and added several others. And all of this after Obama was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize (for no apparent reason) in 2009.

The military escalation under Obama-Biden surely explains the deep state's preference for Biden over Trump. But what about the voters? In opposing Trump and favouring Biden, the leftist 'resistance' is supporting the continuation of dodgy and illegal US invasions and endless wars. An achievement to be proud of. On the other hand, voters who support non-intervention and troop withdrawal favour the Republican, Donald Trump.

So, tell me again: who's 'left' and who's 'right' in this US presidential election?

Think your friends would be interested? Share this story!

The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of RT.


[Oct 01, 2020] Not A Big Deal-- State Dept Docs Show Amb. Yovanovitch Directly Aware Of Two Burisma Bribe Attempts

Images deleted. See original for full text
Notable quotes:
"... Well, according to new memos belatedly released to Just the News's John Solomon , under a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit against the State Department, Yovanovitch wrote top officials in Washington that she feared Burisma Holdings had made a second bribe to Ukrainian officials around the time a corruption probe against Hunter Biden's natural gas employer was closed before Donald Trump took office. ..."
"... Of course, this is all in addition to previous memos that revealed Ukrainian natural gas firm Burisma conducted an aggressive lobbying campaign directed at the US State Department throughout the 2016 US election, with the goal of pressuring the Obama administration to lean on Kiev to drop corruption allegations. ..."
"... You decide : The Vice-President's son on the board of a foreign energy entity that was implicate not once, but twice, in alleged bribery schemes? Big deal? or "not a big deal"? ..."
Oct 01, 2020 | www.zerohedge.com

Always glowing in her Schiff-protected bubble of virtue-signaling safety, former Ukraine Ambassador Marie Yovanovitch told Congress that she knew little about Burisma Holdings and the long-running corruption probe against the company now so infamously linked to Joe Biden's son Hunter, specifically testifying under oath, "It just wasn't a big deal."

Well, according to new memos belatedly released to Just the News's John Solomon , under a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit against the State Department, Yovanovitch wrote top officials in Washington that she feared Burisma Holdings had made a second bribe to Ukrainian officials around the time a corruption probe against Hunter Biden's natural gas employer was closed before Donald Trump took office.

As Just The News' John Solomon writes :

Then-Ambassador Marie Yovanovitch's concerns were first raised in a Ukrainian news story about a Russian-backed fugitive lawmaker in Ukraine, who alleged Burisma had dumped low-priced natural gas into the market for officials near Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko to buy low and sell high, making a bribe disguised as a profit.

The scheme was confirmed by U.S. officials before Yovanovitch alerted the top State official for Ukraine and Russia policy in Washington at the time, Assistant Secretary of State Victoria Nuland, the memos show.

"There are accusations that Burisma allegedly had a subsidiary dump natural gas as a way to pay bribes," Yovanovitch wrote Nuland on Dec. 29, 2016, noting the story "mentions that Hunter Biden and former Polish President Kwasniewski are on the Burisma Board."

The alert was the second in two years in which the embassy alleged Burisma had paid a bribe while Vice President Joe Biden's son served on its board.

Back in February 2015, then-embassy official George Kent reported to the U.S. Justice Department evidence that Burisma had made a $7 million cash bribe to Ukrainian prosecutors before those prosecutors killed a separate corruption probe in the United Kingdom by failing to produce required evidence.

Read more here...

This was after Trump's election win and just 22 days before President Obama left office.

Of course, this is all in addition to previous memos that revealed Ukrainian natural gas firm Burisma conducted an aggressive lobbying campaign directed at the US State Department throughout the 2016 US election, with the goal of pressuring the Obama administration to lean on Kiev to drop corruption allegations.

You decide : The Vice-President's son on the board of a foreign energy entity that was implicate not once, but twice, in alleged bribery schemes? Big deal? or "not a big deal"?

[Jul 06, 2020] The "anti-antiwar left" is of course an oxymoron. In reality, they are neo-McCarthyites, neocons, and Israel-firsters

There is not much "real" left in the the USA. Usually what we see is just different flavors of far right and right.
Money quote: "Ah, for the good old days when lefties could be treated as a deluded minority rather than a vanguard party of globalist imperialists. pl"
Notable quotes:
"... As Johnstone recounts, after the Cold War liberals became bewitched by the prospect of waging wars for humanitarian ends. A generation of journalists and foreign policy experts including Samantha Power, Christiane Amanpour, Jamie Rubin, and Christopher Hitchens, would make the Balkans a proving ground for their liberal theories of preventative war, in the process throwing the ancient and venerable tradition of St. Augustine’s Just War theory on the trash heap and paving the way for what was to follow in the coming decades, including Iraq II, Libya, Syria and a global drone war and a “targeted” assassination program." ..."
"... In other words we are seeing the tight squeezing of the New Democrats (Wall-Street, Tech, humanitarian intervention) by the radical left (Green New Deal, UBI) and by the angry Trumpists. ..."
"... Samantha Power is Irish bred and London born. She was schooled in Dublin till her mother emigrated to the US. Christiane Amanpour is British-Iranian. As far as I can determine she never has had US citizenship. ..."
"... WTF were they smoking when they decided to promote war to secure human rights??? So why did we let these halfwits in the country? ..."
"... Kerry seems is the perfect example of Democrats’ hypocritical ‘opposition’ to pointless and futile wars. Not that anybody remembers, but it was the liberal Bill Clinton who went to war in Yugoslavia and defanged the anti-war wing of the party. After Clinton Democrats only raised their voices against Republican wars and now have taken to criticizing Trump for not being belligerent enough!!! ..."
"... The same white men who stood three years ago Charlottesville to prevent the toppling of statues could be the backbone of a new anti-war movement ..."
"... The New York Times is not revolutionary, not by a very long shot. Neither are all the big corporations and foundations who've donated generously to the cause of BLM. ..."
"... America is not in the middle of a revolution — it is a reactionary putsch. About four years ago, the sort of people who had acquired position and influence as a result of globalisation were turfed out of power for the first time in decades. They watched in horror as voters across the world chose Brexit, Donald Trump and other populist and conservative-nationalist options. ..."
"... The essential idea is that neither the non Trump wing of the American establishment (more properly Global establishment still anchored tenuously in DC) nor the Trump wing want the voters to discuss the economy - it's too hot a subject. ..."
"... Way too hot since the financial crisis of 2007-08 followed the working class jobs overseas and south of the border in the 90s and inequality exceeded that of the gilded age. No. But they will discuss racism (and gender). It divides the country further than ever, deflects focus on wealth disparity (the establishment has no intention of ever equalizing wealth even a bit) and presto - gives corporate America and media a new policing tool in the form of mandatory workshops and summary job dismissals even more unsubstantiated than many of those with #MeToo. It enhances the academic totalitarians of political correctness with corporate / employer totalitarianism of "learn your inclusivity lessons reeducation camp" or else. Unions disappeared long ago and now this. ..."
"... Yes the stupidity is ominous. They act as though there is no potential for repurcussion. It's very peculiar. ..."
Jul 05, 2020 | turcopolier.typepad.com

As Johnstone recounts, after the Cold War liberals became bewitched by the prospect of waging wars for humanitarian ends. A generation of journalists and foreign policy experts including Samantha Power, Christiane Amanpour, Jamie Rubin, and Christopher Hitchens, would make the Balkans a proving ground for their liberal theories of preventative war, in the process throwing the ancient and venerable tradition of St. Augustine’s Just War theory on the trash heap and paving the way for what was to follow in the coming decades, including Iraq II, Libya, Syria and a global drone war and a “targeted” assassination program."

Carden, https://www.counterpunch.org/2020/07/01/the-return-of-the-anti-antiwar-left


exiled off mainstreet , 04 July 2020 at 03:36 PM

This is a serious article addressing a serious problem. If the "left" sells out on war issues as they have done the last 20 years or so, there is no pushback against the permanent war system. Those one-time leftists who have sold out are no longer really leftists, especially once they are relying on the corrupt permanent spy state for their information and support.

Polish Janitor , 04 July 2020 at 04:05 PM

Col Lang,

Interesting and correct observation. Allow me to throw in my own two cents with regards to the rise of what is defined as the "anti-Anti War left". I should note that there are eerily similar parallels between the rise of the New Left in the 60s that was the mix of socialist democrats, sexual revolutionaries, flower-power hippies, anti-imperialist/anti-war activists, and identitarianists (Huey Netwon, Cesar Chavez, MLK) etc. and today's BLM, Antifa, 'woke' types, third-gen feminists, broke millennials.

While the former's rise in the Democratic Party led to the exodus of Neoconservatives (former Trotskyists, Socialist and Marxists) to the Conservative movement, the latter is also moving the New Democrats to the Right, but the problem is that the current Political Right is mostly controlled by the Trumpists so these New Democrat types (Pelosi, Schumer, Schiff, Menendez, Biden etc.) are stuck between a hard place and a rock.

In other words we are seeing the tight squeezing of the New Democrats (Wall-Street, Tech, humanitarian intervention) by the radical left (Green New Deal, UBI) and by the angry Trumpists.

Just to give you one example, last week a prototype New Democrat and long time congressman (since 89) Elliot Engel of NY who fits well into this definition was defeated handily in the NY-16 primaries by the Democratic Socialists of America endorsed candidate, Jamal Bowman. Mr. Bowman, an African American is ideologically very similar to AOC, Tlaib, and Omar.

He won on a platform of foreign policy endorsed by the left-zionists (ex-labor zionists) against the likudnik right-wing zionist of Engles' which is very interesting since, Engel has been known for his hawkish views on foreign policy and extremely pro-Israel and chaired the House Foreign Affairs Committee recently.

Recently Sanders and the Democratic Socialists expressed their opposition to Bibi's planned annexation of West-bank and adjacent Palestinian enclaves and threatened to to cut-off the military aid to Israel if Bibi moved on with his plan.

Domestically, there are several seats up for re-election and especially two in Georgia and Arizona Senate whose ppointed Republican candidates are in very shaky grounds versus their democratic challengers. What is clear is that the New Democrat platforms are no longer popular by the Democratic base and given recent events, it can be safely said that either the most law and order and Trumpian candidates will win or the Democratic socialists endorsed ones. So another problem for the New Dems.

Judging by my observation, the current trend is the alliance between the NeverTrumpers (The Lincoln project, The Right Pac) like Bill Kristol and the Reagan-to-Bush-43-neoconservatives (most of whom were Reagan Democrats in the late 70s and 80s themselves so nothing new for them) to push Trump out of office in their view before the RNC in Aug and to make room for the New Democrats and also to restore their previous 20+ years of reigning over the Republican Party. If their plan becomes successful, in the post 2020 election we will see a political configuration resembling the 90s and early 2000s with one major difference which is the introduction of several, in my opinion less that 10 seats in the House reserved for the far-Left socialist Democrats.

And in terms of Foreign policy, everyone will get happy and the Blob/Borg think tank class in D.C. will see business as usual as the Democratic Socialists will be "persuaded" to team up with the New Democrats with regards to sending Troops to conduct humanitarian intervention abroad (i.e. the Powell Doctrine) in exchange for domestic welfare programs, the NeverTrumpers and the Republican hawks (Cotton, Graham, Rubio, Cruz, etc.) will have war plans already written for them at AEI, Hudson and Heritage that focuses on China with the help of the New Democrats and probably the Far-left.

Leith , 04 July 2020 at 05:28 PM

Samantha Power is Irish bred and London born. She was schooled in Dublin till her mother emigrated to the US. Christiane Amanpour is British-Iranian. As far as I can determine she never has had US citizenship. Christopher Hitchens is English born, never visited America unti he was 32. And even then kept his British citizenship for another 26 years, only becoming a US citizen in 2007. Probably to take advantage of favorable US income tax on his book earnings.

WTF were they smoking when they decided to promote war to secure human rights??? So why did we let these halfwits in the country?

Seems to me we are better off by letting in a few more Sikh farmers from India or more wannabee restaurant owners from Ethiopia. Or maybe even more wannabee bodega empresarios from south of our border.

JohnH , 04 July 2020 at 06:32 PM

Anyone remember John Kerry, who criticized the anti-war movement and enlisted and served in Vietnam, only to opportunistically turn against the war. As long as the winds blew anti-war, he continued to posture that way. Then he reversed course, maybe sensing an SOS opportunity, and voted for the War in Iraq, meanwhile posturing against it on the grounds that it wasn’t being fought right!

Kerry seems is the perfect example of Democrats’ hypocritical ‘opposition’ to pointless and futile wars. Not that anybody remembers, but it was the liberal Bill Clinton who went to war in Yugoslavia and defanged the anti-war wing of the party. After Clinton Democrats only raised their voices against Republican wars and now have taken to criticizing Trump for not being belligerent enough!!!

Outrage Beyond , 04 July 2020 at 08:16 PM

The "anti-antiwar left" is of course an oxymoron. In reality, they are neo-McCarthyites, neocons, and Israel-firsters. Nothing new. They were never leftists to begin with and certainly never will be.

To add onto the comments by Polish Janitor regarding Jamaal Bowman, I have this to say. Just like AOC, he'll cuck out to Israel. He'll take the money and he'll probably take that "educational" trip to Israel as well. While he's there, would anyone be surprised if he had a hot time with some honey pie and they got him on Kodak? They'll only drop hints about the stick, in the meantime, they'll be stuffing his face with carrots as he comes around to the Zionist agenda.

Vegetius , 05 July 2020 at 12:40 AM

@exiled off mainstreet

The same white men who stood three years ago Charlottesville to prevent the toppling of statues could be the backbone of a new anti-war movement, if only conservatives weren't afraid of being called 'racist' by people who hate them anyway.

Fourth and Long , 05 July 2020 at 04:56 PM

To better get one's bearings regarding what's going on I highly recommend this Spectator article to the committee. Although BLM and other nefarious types referred to as Antifa certainly do pass the anarchist test and Marxist test it's critical the committee understand that the whole thing is being managed by a wing of the establishment.

The New York Times is not revolutionary, not by a very long shot. Neither are all the big corporations and foundations who've donated generously to the cause of BLM.

Editorial talents at NYT instigated the wholesale rewriting of American history over a year ago with their fraudulent 1619 project which says American history began in that year with the importation of African slaves.

But it's real thesis is that the revolution of 1776 (an inspiration to people everywhere), was not undertaken to free the thirteen colonies from the tyranny of King George - no - it was done for the sole reason of perpetuation of slavery because Washington and other colonial land owners feared that the institution of slavery would be made illegal by their then British overlords. I kid you not.

The NY Times. Pure revisionism of the worst sort. But the ends which this revisionism serve, as do the subsequent BLM riots and mindless iconoclasms, are revealed in this piece:

https://www.spectator.co.uk/article/this-revolution-isnt-what-it-looks-like

(This Revolution isn't What it Looks Like). Here's a brief excerpt - it's a management device. Matt Taibbi has a treatment nearly as good but too diffuse and witty for these purposes, under the title "Year Zero" on his blog, but it is behind a paywall. Many illustrative exames though.

https://taibbi.substack.com/p/year-zero/

Spectator first few paragraphs.. Bear with this. What they're doing is designed to infuriate and disable critical understanding as they proceed to carry the day in real time.

QUOTE:

America is not in the middle of a revolution — it is a reactionary putsch. About four years ago, the sort of people who had acquired position and influence as a result of globalisation were turfed out of power for the first time in decades. They watched in horror as voters across the world chose Brexit, Donald Trump and other populist and conservative-nationalist options.

This deposition explains the storm of unrest battering American cities from coast to coast and making waves in Europe as well. The storm’s ferocity — the looting, the mobs, the mass lawlessness, the zealous iconoclasm, the deranged slogans like #DefundPolice — terrifies ordinary Americans. Many conservatives, especially, believe they are facing a revolution targeting the very foundations of American order.

But when national institutions bow (or kneel) to the street fighters’ demands, it should tell us that something else is going on. We aren’t dealing with a Maoist or Marxist revolt, even if some protagonists spout hard-leftish rhetoric. Rather, what’s playing out is a counter-revolution of the neoliberal class — academe, media, large corporations, ‘experts’, Big Tech — against the nationalist revolution launched in 2016. The supposed insurgents and the elites are marching in the streets together, taking the knee together.

They do not seek a radically new arrangement, but a return to the pre-Trump, pre-Brexit status quo ante which was working out very well for them. It was, of course, working out less well for the working class of all races, who bore the brunt of their preferred policy mix: open borders, free trade without limits, an aggressive cultural liberalism that corroded tradition and community, technocratic ‘global governance’ that neutered democracy and politics as such.

When national institutions bow to the street fighters’ demands, it tells us something else is going on

UNQUOTE

jerseycityjoan , 05 July 2020 at 05:32 PM

...Did you realize that the Black Lives Matter group only has 14 local chapters in America and 3 in Canada? I don't think there are many actual Antifa members out there either. Now of course a few determined troublemakers can cause a lot of problems but still I can't see how the country is in real danger.

Probably the real danger here is that these groups get moral support from nonradical people for radical actions and policies. Right now there are a lot more people against getting rid of the police than are for it. Now if that changed I would get worried. I have to admit that I don't like the fact that we do not know who's funding the radicals and that many are anonymous but I am not afraid of them. I can't imagine a situation in which they would win and we would lose over time.

Fourth and Long , 05 July 2020 at 06:23 PM

Colonel Lang,

No it doesn't, not that I know of. It was the brainchild of Nikole Hannah-Jones working since 2015 for the times, who received a 2020 Pulitzer prize for the project which initially was presented in the Times magazine for the 400th anniversary of 1619 when it is claimed that enslaved Africans first arrived to the American colonies. However it mushroomed into something much larger and won the award. It was to investigate the legacy of slavery but with its claim that the true founding of the United States was in 1619 rather than 1776, it drew criticism from several historians. The controversy was conducted in Politico and on the pages of the World Socialist Web Site. See here:

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_1619_Project

You will find links to several of the articles of the project, including: "America Wasn't a Democracy Until Black Americans Made It One", essay by Nikole Hannah-Jones and "American Capitalism Is Brutal. You Can Trace That to the Plantation", essay by Matthew Desmond.

I prefaced the intro to the Spectator article with mention of the Times award winning project because it is vital cultural- historical background to what's transpired since George Floyd incident of May 25.

My purpose was not to focus on that revisionist project though one may investigate it at leisure, but the reactionary establishment counter coup to the 2016 election of which the events of May 25 et seq are the most recent chapter - chapters one and two being Russiagate and impeachment.

Taibbi, in his latest which parallels the Spectator piece, does think to mention it. The essential idea is that neither the non Trump wing of the American establishment (more properly Global establishment still anchored tenuously in DC) nor the Trump wing want the voters to discuss the economy - it's too hot a subject.

Way too hot since the financial crisis of 2007-08 followed the working class jobs overseas and south of the border in the 90s and inequality exceeded that of the gilded age. No. But they will discuss racism (and gender). It divides the country further than ever, deflects focus on wealth disparity (the establishment has no intention of ever equalizing wealth even a bit) and presto - gives corporate America and media a new policing tool in the form of mandatory workshops and summary job dismissals even more unsubstantiated than many of those with #MeToo. It enhances the academic totalitarians of political correctness with corporate / employer totalitarianism of "learn your inclusivity lessons reeducation camp" or else. Unions disappeared long ago and now this.

From Taibbi:

It’s the Fourth of July, and revolution is in the air. Only in America would it look like this: an elite-sponsored Maoist revolt, couched as a Black liberation movement whose canonical texts are a corporate consultant’s white guilt self-help manual, and a New York Times series rewriting history to explain an election they called wrong.

Much of America has watched in quizzical silence in recent weeks as crowds declared war on an increasingly incoherent succession of historical symbols. Maybe you nodded as Confederate general Albert Pike was toppled or even when Christopher Columbus was beheaded, but it got a little weird when George Washington was emblazoned with “Fuck Cops” and set on fire, or when they went after Ulysses S. Grant, abolitionist Colonel Hans Christian Heg, “Forward,” (a seven-foot-tall female figure meant to symbolize progress), the Portland, Oregon “Elk statue,” or my personal favorite, the former slave Miguel de Cervantes, whose cheerful creations Don Quixote and Sancho Panza were apparently mistaken for reals and had their eyes lashed red in San Francisco.

Was a What the Fuck? too much to ask? It was! In the space of a few weeks the level of discourse in the news media dropped so low, the fear of being shamed as a deviationist so high, that most of the weirder incidents went uncovered. Leading press organs engaged in real-time Soviet-style airbrushing. Here’s how the Washington Post described a movement that targeted Spanish missionary Junipero Serra, Abraham Lincoln (a “single-handed symbol of white supremacy,” according to UW-Madison students), an apple cider press sculpture, abolitionist Mathias Baldwin, and the first all-Black volunteer regiment in the Civil War, among others:

Across the country, protesters have toppled statues of figures from America’s sordid past — including Confederate generals — as part of demonstrations against racism and police violence.

The New York Times, once the dictionary definition of “unprovocative,” suddenly reads like Pol Pot’s Sayings of Angkar. Heading into the Fourth of July weekend, the morning read for upscale white Manhattanites was denouncing Mount Rushmore, urging Black America to arm itself, and re-positioning America alongside more deserving historical parallels in a feature about caste systems:

turcopolier , 05 July 2020 at 06:57 PM

fourth and long

For 150 years the US treated its defeated internal enemy with respect in the interest of re-unification and reconciliation. Now that is gone destroyed by Marxist vanguard conspiratorial parties like antifa and BLM and the the power hungry Democrat Party pols who have made a deal with their soul mate extremists. Well, laissez les bon temps roulez!

Fourth and Long , 05 July 2020 at 07:55 PM

Colonel,

Yes the stupidity is ominous. They act as though there is no potential for repurcussion. It's very peculiar. Maybe they think oh well, there's been plenty of riots over the years. What ever happened? Didn't we get OJ freed? Didn't they pass civil rights legislation back in the day? And as for right now - aren't all the big people taking the knee - aren't corporations endorsing us? Isn't Twitter censoring in our favor? The mayor of New York City - wasn't he all set to paint a black lives matter mural onto 5th avenue opposite Trump tower before postponing it to paint one in Harlem instead?

Yes, all true. I don't think they've detected how furious people are getting with their behavior though. The tide is turning - CHAZ is gone, the conventions loom.

Long term I see nothing to be optimistic about. If Trump wins the counter coups will continue. If Biden, with a female minority VP who may become President -- good luck. Remember the Tea Party reaction ensuing on the heels of the first African American President? Reaction will be quite as bad at least with Trump, his family and his base still very much on the scene and infuriated.

But the oligarchs have seen their assets rise by hundreds of billions of dollars in a few short months. The surviving owners consolidate. People will be forced to work for peanuts. Evictions and repossessions are coming soon.

[May 22, 2020] It is easy for chickenhawks to scream war war war but when their lives or their kid's lives on the line of fire most will ran away to Canada or Mexico

May 22, 2020 | www.moonofalabama.org

milomilo , May 23 2020 0:24 utc | 44

@vk , hilarious post trying to potray modern day USN as fhe same one who fought japanese.. after WW2 all USN did was doing tag with soviets and today even their skill lost in the current situation.. The good ole US navy is gone, all that left is aging airframes and ships and confused doctrine that focused on clearing endless brush fires from restless natives..

USN are not able to fight peer enemy naval force, its man power are not sustainable in such fight , thus they will resort to military draft system again and pray tell how many foolish ignorant gung ho flag waving american would enlist ? it is easy for chickenhawks to scream war war war but when their lives or their kid's lives on the line of fire most will ran away to canada or mexico

[May 05, 2020] The departing ambassador is a female from the Ukrainian diaspora in Canada. A Ukrainian "Nationalist" by descent. Incapable of thinking of the interests of this unfortunate country.

May 05, 2020 | www.unz.com

Alfred , says: Show Comment May 2, 2020 at 6:00 am GMT

@Derer Georgia's lunatic who is now Ukraine deputy prime minister

I think Saakashvili has not made it yet. He is being opposed by a lot of the Jews who control this "country". Last week, the guy investigating "corruption" was sacked. His replacement was a Jew. It is just so funny. Like a theater.

Almost all the oligarchs are Jewish – courtesy of the World Bank and (((Western))) banks. It is amazing that in a country of allegedly 42 million they cannot find an ethnic Slav to get the job. I do not use the term Ukrainian as it is not really one country.

Forget the bluster. I suspect they want to bring in Saakashvili because he can bring in more loans from the IMF. His backers are in the USA.

BTW, the new American ambassador to Ukraine is a retired US Army general. That should give you some idea as to their line of thinking. However, I suspect that he is too knowledgeable to want to start a war with Russia.

Alfred , says: Show Comment May 2, 2020 at 6:00 am GMT
@Derer Georgia's lunatic who is now Ukraine deputy prime minister

I think Saakashvili has not made it yet. He is being opposed by a lot of the Jews who control this "country". Last week, the guy investigating "corruption" was sacked. His replacement was a Jew. It is just so funny. Like a theater.

Almost all the oligarchs are Jewish – courtesy of the World Bank and (((Western))) banks. It is amazing that in a country of allegedly 42 million they cannot find an ethnic Slav to get the job. I do not use the term Ukrainian as it is not really one country.

Forget the bluster. I suspect they want to bring in Saakashvili because he can bring in more loans from the IMF. His backers are in the USA.

BTW, the new American ambassador to Ukraine is a retired US Army general. That should give you some idea as to their line of thinking. However, I suspect that he is too knowledgeable to want to start a war with Russia.

The departing ambassador is a female from the Ukrainian diaspora in Canada. A Ukrainian "Nationalist" by descent. Incapable of thinking of the interests of this unfortunate country.

[Feb 25, 2020] The Democrats' Quandary In a Struggle Between Oligarchy and Democracy, Something Must Give by Michael Hudson

Highly recommended!
Notable quotes:
"... By Michael Hudson, a research professor of Economics at University of Missouri, Kansas City, and a research associate at the Levy Economics Institute of Bard College. His latest book is "and forgive them their debts": Lending, Foreclosure and Redemption from Bronze Age Finance to the Jubilee Year ..."
"... Until Nevada, all the presidential candidates except for Bernie Sanders were playing for a brokered convention. The party's candidates seemed likely to be chosen by the Donor Class, the One Percent and its proxies, not the voting class (the 99 Percent). If, as Mayor Bloomberg has assumed, the DNC will sell the presidency to the highest bidder, this poses the great question: Can the myth that the Democrats represent the working/middle class survive? Or, will the Donor Class trump the voting class? ..."
"... This could be thought of as "election interference" – not from Russia but from the DNC on behalf of its Donor Class. That scenario would make the Democrats' slogan for 2020 "No Hope or Change." That is, no from today's economic trends that are sweeping wealth up to the One Percent. ..."
"... But in the wake of Sanders' landslide victory in Nevada, a brokered convention would mean the end of the Democrat Party pretense to represent the 99 Percent. The American voting system would be seen to be as oligarchic as that of Rome on the eve of the infighting that ended with Augustus becoming Emperor in 27 BC. ..."
"... Today's pro-One Percent media – CNN, MSNBC and The New York Times ..."
"... History of Rome ..."
"... History of Rome ..."
"... Some on Resistance Twitter claim that if Sanders is the nominee, Trump will win a 48 sweep. Possible, but very unlikely. But if it did happen, the MSM would once again dismiss his program as being completely unacceptable to the voting class, and Sanders would trudge back to Vermont never to be heard from again. ..."
"... So if his program requires a decade long follow through, what are the least bad outcomes? If the D's deprive him of the nomination at the convention, even though he has far and away more pledged delegates, the MSM cannot dismiss his program as it would in the two previous scenarios, and his program would live to fight another day. ..."
"... Trump may or may not win. But if he does, the best he can hope for is a skin-of-his-teeth victory. Seriously, he lost the popular vote by a ton to Hillary freaking Clinton. ..."
"... And stuff is beginning to crumble around him on the Right. The Dow drops. Oops Richie Rich gets uneasy. ..."
"... I was more than a little honked when Sanders appeared to roll over and support HRC in 2016 in spite of the obvious fraud perpetrated on him and his supporters, not to mention the subsequent treatment they received at the hands of the DNC and Tom Perez. ..."
"... I find myself wondering if it wouldn't be a good idea for Sanders and his supporters to make it absolutely clear their attempts to work within 'the system' are finished if they are robbed again; maybe even starting work immediately on establishing a party not controlled by Wall Street lickspittle or knuckle-dragging no-nothings? ..."
Feb 25, 2020 | www.nakedcapitalism.com

By Michael Hudson, a research professor of Economics at University of Missouri, Kansas City, and a research associate at the Levy Economics Institute of Bard College. His latest book is "and forgive them their debts": Lending, Foreclosure and Redemption from Bronze Age Finance to the Jubilee Year

To hear the candidates debate, you would think that their fight was over who could best beat Trump. But when Trump's billionaire twin Mike Bloomberg throws a quarter-billion dollars into an ad campaign to bypass the candidates actually running for votes in Iowa, New Hampshire and Nevada, it's obvious that what really is at issue is the future of the Democrat Party. Bloomberg is banking on a brokered convention held by the Democratic National Committee (DNC) in which money votes. (If "corporations are people," so is money in today's political world.)

Until Nevada, all the presidential candidates except for Bernie Sanders were playing for a brokered convention. The party's candidates seemed likely to be chosen by the Donor Class, the One Percent and its proxies, not the voting class (the 99 Percent). If, as Mayor Bloomberg has assumed, the DNC will sell the presidency to the highest bidder, this poses the great question: Can the myth that the Democrats represent the working/middle class survive? Or, will the Donor Class trump the voting class?

This could be thought of as "election interference" – not from Russia but from the DNC on behalf of its Donor Class. That scenario would make the Democrats' slogan for 2020 "No Hope or Change." That is, no from today's economic trends that are sweeping wealth up to the One Percent.

All this sounds like Rome at the end of the Republic in the 1st century BC. The way Rome's constitution was set up, candidates for the position of consul had to pay their way through a series of offices. The process started by going deeply into debt to get elected to the position of aedile, in charge of staging public games and entertainments. Rome's neoliberal fiscal policy did not tax or spend, and there was little public administrative bureaucracy, so all such spending had to be made out of the pockets of the oligarchy. That was a way of keeping decisions about how to spend out of the hands of democratic politics. Julius Caesar and others borrowed from the richest Bloomberg of their day, Crassus, to pay for staging games that would demonstrate their public spirit to voters (and also demonstrate their financial liability to their backers among Rome's One Percent). Keeping election financing private enabled the leading oligarchs to select who would be able to run as viable candidates. That was Rome's version of Citizens United.

But in the wake of Sanders' landslide victory in Nevada, a brokered convention would mean the end of the Democrat Party pretense to represent the 99 Percent. The American voting system would be seen to be as oligarchic as that of Rome on the eve of the infighting that ended with Augustus becoming Emperor in 27 BC.

Today's pro-One Percent media – CNN, MSNBC and The New York Times have been busy spreading their venom against Sanders. On Sunday, February 23, CNN ran a slot, "Bloomberg needs to take down Sanders, immediately."[1]Given Sanders' heavy national lead, CNN warned, the race suddenly is almost beyond the vote-fixers' ability to fiddle with the election returns. That means that challengers to Sanders should focus their attack on him; they will have a chance to deal with Bloomberg later (by which CNN means, when it is too late to stop him).

The party's Clinton-Obama recipients of Donor Class largesse pretend to believe that Sanders is not electable against Donald Trump. This tactic seeks to attack him at his strongest point. Recent polls show that he is the only candidate who actually would defeat Trump – as they showed that he would have done in 2016.

The DNC knew that, but preferred to lose to Trump than to win with Bernie. Will history repeat itself? Or to put it another way, will this year's July convention become a replay of Chicago in 1968?

A quandary, not a problem . Last year I was asked to write a scenario for what might happen with a renewed DNC theft of the election's nomination process. To be technical, I realize, it's not called theft when it's legal. In the aftermath of suits over the 2016 power grab, the courts ruled that the Democrat Party is indeed controlled by the DNC members, not by the voters. When it comes to party machinations and decision-making, voters are subsidiary to the superdelegates in their proverbial smoke-filled room (now replaced by dollar-filled foundation contracts).

I could not come up with a solution that does not involve dismantling and restructuring the existing party system. We have passed beyond the point of having a solvable "problem" with the Democratic National Committee (DNC). That is what a quandary is. A problem has a solution – by definition. A quandary does not have a solution. There is no way out. The conflict of interest between the Donor Class and the Voting Class has become too large to contain within a single party. It must split.

A second-ballot super-delegate scenario would mean that we are once again in for a second Trump term. That option was supported by five of the six presidential contenders on stage in Nevada on Wednesday, February 20. When Chuck Todd asked whether Michael Bloomberg, Elizabeth Warren, Joe Biden, Pete Buttigieg and Amy Klobuchar would support the candidate who received the most votes in the primaries (now obviously Bernie Sanders), or throw the nomination to the super-delegates held over from the Obama-Clinton neoliberals (75 of whom already are said to have pledged their support to Bloomberg), each advocated "letting the process play out." That was a euphemism for leaving the choice to the Tony-Blair style leadership that have made the Democrats the servants' entrance to the Republican Party. Like the British Labour Party behind Blair and Gordon Brown, its role is to block any left-wing alternative to the Republican program on behalf of the One Percent.

This problem would not exist if the United States had a European-style parliamentary system that would enable a third party to obtain space on the ballots in all 50 states. If this were Europe, the new party of Bernie Sanders, AOC et al. would exceed 50 percent of the votes, leaving the Wall Street democrats with about the same 8 percent share that similar neoliberal democratic parties have in Europe ( e.g ., Germany's hapless neoliberalized Social Democrats), that is, Klobocop territory as voters moved to the left. The "voting Democrats," the 99 Percent, would win a majority leaving the Old Neoliberal Democrats in the dust.

The DNC's role is to prevent any such challenge. The United States has an effective political duopoly, as both parties have created such burdensome third-party access to the ballot box in state after state that Bernie Sanders decided long ago that he had little alternative but to run as a Democrat.

The problem is that the Democrat Party does not seem to be reformable. That means that voters still may simply abandon it – but that will simply re-elect the Democrats' de facto 2020 candidate, Donald Trump. The only hope would be to shrink the party into a shell, enabling the old guard to go way so that the party could be rebuilt from the ground up.

But the two parties have created a legal duopoly reinforced with so many technical barriers that a repeat of Ross Perot's third party (not to mention the old Socialist Party, or the Whigs in 1854) would take more than one election cycle to put in place. For the time being, we may expect another few months of dirty political tricks to rival those of 2016 as Obama appointee Tom Perez is simply the most recent version of Florida fixer Debbie Schultz-Wasserman (who gave a new meaning to the Wasserman Test).

So we are in for another four years of Donald Trump. But by 2024, how tightly will the U.S. economy find itself tied in knots?

The Democrats' Vocabulary of Deception

How I would explain Bernie's program. Every economy is a mixed economy. But to hear Michael Bloomberg and his fellow rivals to Bernie Sanders explain the coming presidential election, one would think that an economy must be either capitalist or, as Bloomberg put it, Communist. There is no middle ground, no recognition that capitalist economies have a government sector, which typically is called the "socialist" sector – Social Security, Medicare, public schooling, roads, anti-monopoly regulation, and public infrastructure as an alternative to privatized monopolies extracting economic rent.

What Mr. Bloomberg means by insisting that it's either capitalism or communism is an absence of government social spending and regulation. In practice this means oligarchic financial control, because every economy is planned by some sector. The key is, who will do the planning? If government refrains from taking the lead in shaping markets, then Wall Street takes over – or the City in London, Frankfurt in Germany, and the Bourse in France.

Most of all, the aim of the One Percent is to distract attention from the fact that the economy is polarizing – and is doing so at an accelerating rate. National income statistics are rigged to show that "the economy" is expanding. The pretense is that everyone is getting richer and living better, not more strapped. But the reality is that all the growth in GDP has accrued to the wealthiest 5 Percent since the Obama Recession began in 2008. Obama bailed out the banks instead of the 10 million victimized junk-mortgage holders. The 95 Percent's share of GDP has shrunk.

The GDP statistics do not show is that "capital gains" – the market price of stocks, bonds and real estate owned mainly by the One to Five Percent – has soared, thanks to Obama's $4.6 trillion Quantitative Easing pumped into the financial markets instead of into the "real" economy in which wage-earners produce goods and services.

How does one "stay the course" in an economy that is polarizing? Staying the course means continuing the existing trends that are concentrating more and more wealth in the hands of the One Percent, that is, the Donor Class – while loading down the 99 Percent with more debt, paid to the One Percent (euphemized as the economy's "savers"). All "saving" is at the top of the pyramid. The 99 Percent can't afford to save much after paying their monthly "nut" to the One Percent.

If this economic polarization is impoverishing most of the population while sucking wealth and income and political power up to the One Percent, then to be a centrist is to be the candidate of oligarchy. It means not challenging the economy's structure.

Language is being crafted to confuse voters into imagining that their interest is the same as that of the Donor Class of rentiers , creditors and financialized corporate businesses and rent-extracting monopolies. The aim is to divert attention from voters' their own economic interest as wage-earners, debtors and consumers. It is to confuse voters not to recognize that without structural reform, today's "business as usual" leaves the One Percent in control.

So to call oneself a "centrist" is simply a euphemism for acting as a lobbyist for siphoning up income and wealth to the One Percent. In an economy that is polarizing, the choice is either to favor them instead of the 99 Percent.

That certainly is not the same thing as stability. Centrism sustains the polarizing dynamic of financialization, private equity, and the Biden-sponsored bankruptcy "reform" written by his backers of the credit-card companies and other financial entities incorporated in his state of Delaware. He was the senator for the that state's Credit Card industry, much as former Democratic VP candidate Joe Lieberman was the senator from Connecticut's Insurance Industry.

A related centrist demand is that of Buttigieg's and Biden's aim to balance the federal budget. This turns out to be a euphemism for cutting back Social Security, Medicare and relate social spending ("socialism") to pay for America's increasing militarization, subsidies and tax cuts for the One Percent. Sanders rightly calls this "socialism for the rich." The usual word for this is oligarchy . That seems to be a missing word in today's mainstream vocabulary.

The alternative to democracy is oligarchy. As Aristotle noted already in the 4 th

Confusion over the word "socialism" may be cleared up by recognizing that every economy is mixed, and every economy is planned – by someone. If not the government in the public interest, then by Wall Street and other financial centers in their interest. They fought against an expanding government sector in every economy today, calling it socialism – without acknowledging that the alternative, as Rosa Luxemburg put it, is barbarism.

I think that Sanders is using the red-letter word "socialism" and calling himself a "democratic socialist" to throw down the ideological gauntlet and plug himself into the long and powerful tradition of socialist politics. Paul Krugman would like him to call himself a social democrat. But the European parties of this name have discredited this label as being centrist and neoliberal. Sanders wants to emphasize that a quantum leap, a phase change is in order.

If he can be criticized for waving a needlessly red flag, it is his repeated statement that his program is designed for the "working class." What he means are wage-earners and this includes the middle class. Even those who make over $100,000 a year are still wage earners, and typically are being squeezed by a predatory financial sector, a predatory medical insurance sector, drug companies and other monopolies.

The danger in this terminology is that most workers like to think of themselves as middle class, because that is what they would like to rise into. That is especially he case for workers who own their own home (even if mortgage represents most of the value, so that most of the home's rental value is paid to banks, not to themselves as part of the "landlord class"), and have an education (even if most of their added income is paid out as student debt service), and their own car to get to work (involving automobile debt).

The fact is that even $100,000 executives have difficulty living within the limits of their paycheck, after paying their monthly nut of home mortgage or rent, medical care, student loan debt, credit-card debt and automobile debt, not to mention 15% FICA paycheck withholding and state and local tax withholding.

Of course, Sanders' terminology is much more readily accepted by wage-earners as the voters whom Hillary called "Deplorables" and Obama called "the mob with pitchforks," from whom he was protecting his Wall Street donors whom he invited to the White House in 2009. But I think there is a much more appropriate term: the 99 Percent, made popular by Occupy Wall Street. That is Bernie's natural constituency. It serves to throw down the gauntlet between democracy and oligarchy, and between socialism and barbarism, by juxtaposing the 99 Percent to the One Percent.

The Democratic presidential debate on February 25 will set the stage for Super Tuesday's "beauty contest" to gauge what voters want. The degree of Sanders' win will help determine whether the byzantine Democrat party apparatus that actually will be able to decide on the Party's candidate. The expected strong Sanders win is will make the choice stark: either to accept who the voters choose – namely, Bernie Sanders – or to pick a candidate whom voters already have rejected, and is certain to lose to Donald Trump in November.

If that occurs, the Democrat Party will evaporate as its old Clinton-Obama guard is no longer able to protect its donor class on Wall Street and corporate America. Too many Sanders voters would stay home or vote for the Greens. That would enable the Republicans to maintain control of the Senate and perhaps even grab back the House of Representatives.

But it would be dangerous to assume that the DNC will be reasonable. Once again, Roman history provides a "business as usual" scenario. The liberal German politician Theodor Mommsen published his History of Rome in 1854-56, warning against letting an aristocracy block reform by controlling the upper house of government (Rome's Senate, or Britain House of Lords). The leading families who overthrew the last king in 509 BC created a Senate chronically prone to being stifled by its leaders' "narrowness of mind and short-sightedness that are the proper and inalienable privileges of all genuine patricianism."[2]

These qualities also are the distinguishing features of the DNC. Sanders had better win big!

________________

[1] https://edition.cnn.com/2020/02/22/opinions/bloomberg-needs-to-take-down-sanders-lockhart/index.html . Joe Lockhart, opinion. For the MSNBC travesty see from February 23, https://www.commondreams.org/news/2020/02/23/msnbc-full-blown-freakout-mode-bernie-sanders-cements-status-democratic-frontrunner, by Jake Johnson.

[2]Mommsen, History of Rome , 1911: 268.


divadab , February 25, 2020 at 7:55 am

I wonder how much of the rot at the top of the Dem party is simple dementia. By the age of 70, half of people have some level of dementia. Consider Joe Biden – is anyone in the public sphere going to state the obvious – that he has dementia and as such is unfit for office?

Fred1 , February 25, 2020 at 8:32 am

First, my priors. I voted for Sanders in 2016, will vote for him in 2020, and expect him to be elected president. Further I believe that where we find ourselves today is the result of at least 40 years of intentional bi-partisan policies. Both parties are responsible.

If Sanders, upon being elected, were able to snap his fingers and call into existence his entire program, it would immediately face a bi-partisan opposition that would be funded by billions of dollars, which would be willing to take as long as necessary, even decades, to roll it back.

Just electing Sanders is only the first step. There must be a committed, determined follow through that must be willing to last decades as well for his program to stick. And there will be defeats along the way.

Several observations. If Hillary had beaten Trump, Sanders would have trudged back to Vermont and would never have been heard from again. The MSM would have dismissed his program as being completely unacceptable to the voting class. But she didn't, so here we are, which is fantastic.

Some on Resistance Twitter claim that if Sanders is the nominee, Trump will win a 48 sweep. Possible, but very unlikely. But if it did happen, the MSM would once again dismiss his program as being completely unacceptable to the voting class, and Sanders would trudge back to Vermont never to be heard from again.

So if his program requires a decade long follow through, what are the least bad outcomes? If the D's deprive him of the nomination at the convention, even though he has far and away more pledged delegates, the MSM cannot dismiss his program as it would in the two previous scenarios, and his program would live to fight another day.

If he loses to Trump, but closely, which can mean a lot of different things, his program would live to fight another day. Moreover, if the D's are seen to actively collude with Trump, this less bad outcome would be even better.

I am an old geezer and don't expect to live long enough to see how all of this plays out. But I am very optimistic about his program's long term prospects. There is only one bad outcome, a Trump 48 state sweep, which I consider very unlikely. But most importantly, the best outcome, his election, and the two least bad outcomes, the D's stealing the nomination from him or his losing a close general election, all still will require a decades long commitment to make his program permanent.

I wish I were younger.

a different chris , February 25, 2020 at 8:55 am

>a Trump 48 state sweep

Where do people get this? Take a deep breath. Trump may or may not win. But if he does, the best he can hope for is a skin-of-his-teeth victory. Seriously, he lost the popular vote by a ton to Hillary freaking Clinton.

And stuff is beginning to crumble around him on the Right. The Dow drops. Oops Richie Rich gets uneasy.

Hammered by a 5 star general. The Deplorables kids were raised to look up to generals, not New Yawk dandys. How does this affect them? And it's still February.

Sailor Bud , February 25, 2020 at 8:34 am

Just an FYI: The five-volume Mommsen "History of Rome" referenced in the text is available in English on Project Gutenberg, free and legal to download. Probably everyone here knows this, but just in case

Dan , February 25, 2020 at 8:44 am

How about Bernie call himself "Roosevelt Democrat" instead of "Democratic Socialist". It would give all those in the senior demographic a better understanding of what Sander's policies mean to them as opposed to the scary prospect of the "Socialist" label.

Oxley Creek Boy , February 25, 2020 at 10:12 am

The Democrats should have been slowly disarming the word "socialist" for at least the last decade. In principle, it's not difficult – as Michael Hudson says – "Every economy is a mixed economy" – and in a very real sense everyone's a socialist (even if only unconsciously). I'm not saying that bit of rhetorical jujitsu would magically turn conservative voters progressive but you'll never get to the point where you can defend socialist programs on the merits if you always dodge that fight. It's just a shame that Bernie Sanders has to do it all in a single election cycle and I don't think choosing a different label now would help him much.

flora , February 25, 2020 at 11:37 am

He could even compare himself to the earlier Roosevelt: Teddy Roosevelt.

By 1900 the old bourbon Dem party was deeply split between its old, big business and banking wing – the bourbons – and the rising progressive/populist wing. It was GOP pres Roosevelt who first pushed through progressive programs like breaking up railroad and commodity monopolies, investigating and regulating meat packing and fraudulent patent medicines, etc. Imagine that.

lyman alpha blob , February 25, 2020 at 1:30 pm

I just finished Stoller's book Goliath and according to him, Teddy wasn't quite as progressive as we are often led to believe. He wasn't so much opposed to those with enormous wealth – he just wanted them to answer to him. He did do the things you mentioned, but after sending the message to the oligarchs, he then became friendly with them once he felt he'd brought them to heel. He developed quite the soft spot for JP Morgan, according to Stoller.

TR wanted to be the Boss, the center of attention with everyone looking up to him. As one of his relatives said, he wanted to be the baby at every christening and the corpse at every funeral.

I find Bernie to be a lot more humble.

Balakirev , February 25, 2020 at 12:51 pm

I have a sense that changing his party affiliation label at any point in time since Sanders began running for president in 2016 would be a godsend to his enemies in both hands of the Duopoly. They'd tar him loudly as a hypocrite without an ounce of integrity, using personal politics to distract from the issues.

Meanwhile, we can expect to see the Socialist (and Communist, and Russia-Russia-Russia) nonsense reiterated as long as Sanders has strong visibility. He's extremely dangerous to both parties and their owners. I don't' believe the DNC will let him take the convention, but if he does, I'll bet the Dems give him minimal support and hope he fails–better the devil you know, etc.

political economist , February 25, 2020 at 9:56 am

It's time to put your money in reality futures by putting all that you can into supporting Bernie, AOC, etc. and all your local candidates that support at least democratic socialism and ourrevolution the DSA Justice Dems or other groups that have people but need money. I was having a conversation with a friend who was complaining that he was getting too many emails from Bernie asking for money after he had given the campaign a "modest amount". My suggestion was in honor of his children and grandchildren he should instead GIVE 'TIL IT FEELS GOOD. My spouse and I, I told him, gave the max to Bernie and now we don't give upset when he asks for more. There will likely never be a moment like this in history and there may not be much of a history if things go the wrong way now. He agreed.

Debra D. , February 25, 2020 at 10:11 am

Exactly right. I gave Bernie the max in 2019 and will keep giving throughout 2020. This campaign is about not just me, but all of us. It's now. We must fight for this change as has always been the historical precedent.

BillC , February 25, 2020 at 11:55 am

OK, you two gave me the push I needed to max out my contributions to Bernie too. Let's hope Bernie's (oops OUR) bandwagon keeps gathering steam!

Arizona Slim , February 25, 2020 at 12:41 pm

Another 2019 Bernie maxer here.

I feel blessed to have been able to give at this level. And I believe that I did this for a lot of people who aren't able to donate at all.

steven , February 25, 2020 at 11:13 am

I was more than a little honked when Sanders appeared to roll over and support HRC in 2016 in spite of the obvious fraud perpetrated on him and his supporters, not to mention the subsequent treatment they received at the hands of the DNC and Tom Perez.

I am coming to understand that might have been necessary within the context of one last desperate attempt to work with the Democratic party. But now I find myself wondering if it wouldn't be a good idea for Sanders and his supporters to make it absolutely clear their attempts to work within 'the system' are finished if they are robbed again; maybe even starting work immediately on establishing a party not controlled by Wall Street lickspittle or knuckle-dragging no-nothings?

Little as it has been the answer has a lot to do with my willingness to pour more money into repetitively self-defeating behavior.

HotFlash , February 25, 2020 at 12:49 pm

Bernie is a long-distance runner and strategizes like one. First work on finishing your races. Then worry about where you place.

Debra R. , February 25, 2020 at 11:28 am

I am a somewhat old geezer, too, who caucused for Bernie in 2016 and 2020. This article is very good and helps me understand why I feel the way I do. I was disappointed in Obama, who didn't follow through on the things I cared about, and I was devastated when Clinton was crowned the Democratic nominee well before the Convention, all the while holding onto a smidgen of hope that somehow Bernie would pull through as the nominee.

I was ecstatic when Bernie announced his candidacy for 2020. He is our only hope, and now we have a second chance. But now I am spending half my time screaming at people on tv and online who can't even hear me, and even if they could, they don't give a s–t what I think. It's Clinton 2.0–same thing all over again, four years later. Just who do these people (DNC, MSM, and others with a voice) think they are, to decide for the Democratic voters which candidate will be the nominee, who won't be the nominee, without regard to what the voters want? They are a bunch of pompous as–s who have some other motive that I am not savvy enough to understand. Is it about money in their pockets or what?

It should be as simple as this–Bernie is leading in the polls, if they are to be believed, and good people of all demographics want him to be our next President. He is a serious contender for the nomination. Show the man some much-earned respect and put people on MSM and publish articles by writers who help us understand what the anti-Bernie panic is about and why we shouldn't panic. Help us to explain his plans if he hasn't explained it thoroughly enough instead of calling him crazy. But to dismiss him as if he has the plague is not furthering the truth, and it is a serious injustice to the voting public. Naked Capitalism can't do it alone.

HotFlash , February 25, 2020 at 12:58 pm

There is a lot of good analysis out there, mainly on Youtube. I particularly like The Hill's Rising. A young progressive Democrat and a young progressive Republican (who even knew there was such a thing!) 'splain a lot of the antipathy. Another good source is Nomiki Konst, who is working on reforming the Dem party from within. Here she talks to RJ Eskow about how the DNC is structured and how she hopes to provide tools for rank-and-file Dems to wrest the levers of power from the establishment. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WZ7wm6DCPV4

notabanktoadie , February 25, 2020 at 12:32 pm

Private sector cannot operate without same. Harrold

The problem is that the population, including FDR in his time, have been duped into believing that the private sector REQUIRES government privileges for private depository institutions, aka "the banks."

So currently we have no truly private sector to speak of but businesses and industry using the public's credit but for private gain.

Susan the other , February 25, 2020 at 12:16 pm

Last night's Democracy Now was interesting. Amy seems to be less of a commie hater than she recently was with her participation in the Russia-Russia-Russia smears against Trump. She held court last night with Paul Krugman and Richard Wolff discussing just exactly what "socialism" means. It was a great performance.

Krug seemed a little shellshocked about the whole discussion and he said we shouldn't even use the term "socialism" at all because all the things Bernie wants are just as capitalist – that capitalism encompasses socialism. But he stuttered when he discussed "single-payer" which he claimed he supported – his single payer is like Pete Buttigieg's single-payer-eventually. He tried to change the subject and Amy brought him straight back.

Then Wolff, who was in excellent form, informed the table that "socialism" is a moveable feast because it can be and has been many things for the advancement of societies, etc. But the term always means the advancement of society. Then Krug dropped a real bomb – he actually said (this is almost a quote) that recently he had been informed by Powell that debt isn't really all that important.

Really, Krug said that. And he tried to exetend that thought to the argument that anybody can provide social benefits – it doesn't require a self-proclaimed "socialist".

Richard Wolff confronted that slide with pointing out that it hasn't happened yet – and he left Krug with no excuses. It was quite the showdown. Nice Richard Wolff is so firmly in Bernie's camp.

Krug looked evasive – and I kept wishing they had invited Steve Keen to participate.

[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] 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] 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] 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.

[Jan 01, 2020] Radical "essentialist identity" left is just tools of financial oligarchy and/or stooges of intelligence agencies and always has been

Jan 01, 2020 | crookedtimber.org

likbez 12.31.19 at 2:25 pm

Tim 12.31.19 at 3:46 am @3

"If this succeeds, we'll be well on the path to dictatorship." This seems predicated on the idea that 'whites' will only be able to hold onto power by Dictatorship. Population trends suggest whites will still be the largest group [just under half] in 2055. A considerable group given their, to borrow the phrase, 'privilege'. Add conservative Asian and even Catholic Latino voters, is it that difficult to envisage a scenario where Republicans sometimes achieve power without Dictatorship? They are already benefiting from the radical left helping drive traditional working class white voters to the right [helped by Republican/Fox etc hyperbole].

Radical left is either idiots of stooges of intelligence agencies and always has been.

IMHO the idea that " whites" are or will be the force behind the move to the dictatorship is completely naïve. Dictatorship is needed for financial oligarchy and it is the most plausible path of development due to another factor -- the collapse of neoliberal ideology and complete discrediting of neoliberal elite. At least in the USA. Russiagate should be viewed as an attempt to stage a color revolution and remove the President by the USA intelligence agencies (in close cooperation with the "Five eyes") .

I would view Russiagate is a kind of Beer Hall Putsch with intelligence agencies instead of national-socialist party. A couple conspirators might be jailed after Durham investigation is finished (Hilter was jailed after the putsch), but the danger that CIA will seize the political power remains. After all KGB was in this role in the USSR for along time. Is the USA that different? I don't think so. There is no countervailing force: the number of people with security clearance in the USA exceed five million. This five million and not "whites" like some completely naïve people propose is the critical mass for the dictatorship.
https://news.yahoo.com/durham-surprises-even-allies-statement-202907008.html

The potential explosiveness of Durham's mission was further underscored by the disclosure that he was examining the role of John O. Brennan, the former CIA director, in how the intelligence community assessed Russia's 2016 election interference.

BTW "whites" are not a homogeneous group. There is especially abhorrent and dangerous neoliberal strata of "whites" including members of financial oligarchy, the "professional class" and "academia" (economics department are completely infected.) as well as MIC prostitutes in MSM.

[Dec 23, 2019] Ukraine, Trump, Biden -- The Real Story Behind 'Ukrainegate'

Dec 23, 2019 | astutenews.com

The argument to be presented here is that Trump, in this phone call, and generally, was trying not only to obtain help with evidence-gathering in the "Crowdstrike" matter (which A.G. Barr is now investigating, and which also is the reason why Trump specifically mentioned "Crowdstrike" at the only instance in the phone-call where he was requesting a "favor" from Zelensky), but to change the policy toward Ukraine that had been established by Obama (via Obama's coup and its aftermath). This is a fact, which will be documented here. Far more than politics was involved here; ideology was actually very much involved. Trump was considering a basic change in US foreign policies. He was considering to replace policies that had been established under, and personnel who had been appointed by, his immediate predecessor, Barack Obama. Democrats are extremely opposed to any such changes. This is one of the reasons for the renewed impeachment-effort by Democrats. They don't want to let go of Obama's worst policies. But changing US foreign policy is within a President's Constitutional authority to do.

Trump fired the flaming neoconservative John Bolton on 10 September 2019. This culminated a growing rejection by Trump of neoconservatism -- something that he had never thought much about but had largely continued from the Obama Administration, which invaded and destroyed Libya in 2011, Syria in 2012-, Yemen in 2015-, and more -- possibly out-doing even George W. Bush, who likewise was a flaming neocon. Trump's gradual turn away from neoconservatism wasn't just political; it was instead a reflection, on his part, that maybe, just maybe, he had actually been wrong and needed to change his foreign policies, in some important ways. (He evidently still hasn't yet figured out precisely what those changes should be.)

For example, on 15 November 2019, the impeachment focus was on the testimony of Marie Yovanovitch, whom Trump had recently ( in May 2019 ) fired as the Ambassador to Ukraine. Democrats presented her as having been the paradigm of professionalism and nonpartisanship in America's foreign service. She was actually a neoconservative who had been appointed as an Ambassador first by President George W. Bush on 20 November 2004, after her having received an M.S. from the National War College in 2001.

Obama appointed her, on 18 May 2016, to replace Geoff Pyatt ( shown and heard in this video confidentially receiving instructions from Obama's agent controlling Ukraine-policy, Victoria Nuland ) as the Ambassador to Ukraine. Obama had selected Yovanovitch because he knew that (just like Pyatt) she supported his polices regarding Ukraine and would adhere to his instructions. Yovanovitch was part of Obama's team, just as she had previously been part of George W. Bush's team.

All three of them were staunch neoconservatives, just as Ambassador Pyatt had been, and just as Victoria Nuland had been, and just as Joe Biden had been.

A neoconservative believes in the rightfulness of American empire over this entire planet, even over the borders of the other nuclear superpower, Russia. Obama's standard phrase arguing for it was "The United States is and remains the one indispensable nation" , meaning that all other nations are "dispensable." This imperialistic belief was an extension of Yale's 'pacifist' pro-Nazi America First movement , which was supported by Wall Street's Dulles brothers in the early 1940s , and which pro-Nazi movement Trump himself has prominently praised. Unlike the progressive US President Franklin Delano Roosevelt, who had planned the UN in order to be the anti -imperialist emerging first-ever global world government of nations, which would democratically set and ultimately enforce international laws of a new global federation of nations -- a global democratic federation of sovereign republics -- neoconservatives are US imperialists, who want instead to destroy the UN, and to extend American power over the entire world, make America not only the policeman to the world but the lawmaker for the world, and the judge jury and executioner of the world, the global dictator. The UN would be weakened to insignificance. This has gradually been occurring. It continued even after what had been thought to have been the 1991 end of the Cold War, and after Obama won a Nobel Peace Prize in 2009 for his deceptive rhetoric. Yale's John Bolton was the leading current proponent of the America First viewpoint, much more straightforward in his advocacy of it than the far wilier Obama was; and, until recently, Trump supported that unhedged advocacy for the neoconservative viewpoint: US imperialism. Regarding the campaign to take over Russia, however, he no longer does -- he has broken with Bolton on that central neoconservative goal, and he is trying to reverse that policy, which had been even more extreme than Obama's policy towards Russia was (which policy had, in fact , produced the coup in Ukraine).

When the Cold War had supposedly ended in 1991, it ended actually only on the Russian side, but secretly it continued and continues on as policy on the American imperialists' side . The neoconservative side, which controlled the US Government by that time (FDR's vision having been destroyed when Ronald Reagan entered the White House in 1981), has no respect whatsoever for Russia's sovereignty over its own land, and certainly not over the land of Russia's neighbors, such as Ukraine, which has a 1,625-mile border with Russia. Neoconservatives want US missiles to be pointed at Moscow all along Russia's border. That would be as if Russia had wanted to position Russian missiles all along Canada's and Mexico's borders with the US; it would disgust any decent person, anywhere, but neoconservatives aren't decent people. Neoconservatives (US imperialists) seek for all of Russia's neighbors to become part of the US empire, so as to isolate Russia and then become able to gobble it up. All neoconservatives want this ultimately to happen. Their grasp for power is truly limitless. Only in the tactical issues do they differ from one-another.

In her testimony behind closed doors to Senators, on 11 October 2019 , Yovanovich stated her views regarding what America's policies toward Ukraine should be, and these were Obama's policies, too; these views are the neoconservative outlook [and my own comments in brackets here will indicate her most egregious distortions and lies in this key passage from her]:

Because of Ukraine's geostrategic position bordering Russia on its east, the warm waters of the oil-rich Black Sea to its south, and four NATO allies to its west, it is critical to the security of the United States [this is like saying that Mexico and Canada are crucial to the security of Russia -- it's a lie] that Ukraine remain free and democratic [meaning, to neoconservatives, under US control] , and that it continue to resist Russian expansionism [like Russia cares about US expansionism over all of the Western Hemisphere? Really? Is that actually what this is about? It's about extending US imperialism on and across Russia's border into Russia itself] Russia's purported annexation of Crimea [but, actually, "Clear and convincing evidence will be presented here that, under US President Barack Obama, the US Government had a detailed plan, which was already active in June 2013, to take over Russia's main naval base, which is in Sevastopol in Crimea, and to turn it into a US naval base." ] , its invasion of Eastern Ukraine, and its defacto control over the Sea of Azov, make clear Russia's malign intentions towards Ukraine [not make clear Russia's determination not to be surrounded by enemies -- by US-stooge regimes. For Russia to avoid that is 'malign', she says] . If we allow Russia's actions to stand, we will set a precedent that the United States will regret for decades to come. So, supporting Ukraine's integration into Europe and combating Russia' s efforts to destabilize Ukraine [Oh, America didn't do that destabilization ?] have anchored our policy since the Ukrainian people protested on the Maidan in 2014 and demanded to be a part of Europe and live according to the rule of law [But Ukrainians before Obama's takeover of Ukraine in February 2014 didn't actually want to be part of the EU nor of NATO, and they considered NATO to be a threat to Ukraine. "In 2010, Gallup found that whereas 17% of Ukrainians considered NATO to mean 'protection of your country,' 40% said it's 'a threat to your country'." ] That was US policy when I became ambassador in August 2016 [after Obama's successful coup there took over its media and turned Ukrainian opinion strongly against Russia] , and it was reaffirmed as that policy as the policy of the current administration in early 2017. [Yes, that's correct, finally a truthful assertion from her. When Trump first came into office, he was a neoconservative, too.] The Revolution of Dignity [ you'll see here the 'dignity' of it ] and the Ukrainian people's demand to end corruption forced the new Ukrainian Government to take measures to fight the rampant corruption that long permeated that country's political and economic systems [and that still do, and perhaps more now than even before] .

That's just one example -- it's about the role of Ambassador Yovanovitch. But the focus of Ukrainegate isn't really that. It's not Yovanovitch. It is what Trump was trying to do, and what Joe Biden was trying to do, and what Obama had actually done. It is also about Joe Biden's son Hunter, because this is also about contending dynasties, and not only about contending individuals. Trump isn't certain, now, that he wants to continue being a full-fledged neoconservative, and to continue extending Obama's neoconservative policies regarding Ukraine. So: this is largely about what those policies actually were. And here is how Joe Biden comes into the picture, because Democrats, in trying to replace President Donald Trump by a President Mike Pence, are trying to restore, actually, Barack Obama's policy in Ukraine, a policy of which the Bidens themselves were very much Obama's agents, and Mike Pence would be expected to continue and extend those policies. Here will be necessary to document some personal and business relationships that the US news-media have consistently been hiding and even lying about, and which might not come up even in the expected subsequent Senate hearings about whether to replace Trump by Pence:

The real person who was the benefactor to, and the boss of, Vice President Joe Biden's son, Hunter Biden, at the Ukrainian gas-exploration company Burisma Holdings, was not the person that the American press says was, Mykola Zlochevsky, who had been part of the Ukrainian Government until Ukraine's President Viktor Yanukovych was overthrown in February 2014, but it was instead Ihor Kolomoysky, who was part of the newly installed Ukrainian Government, which the Obama Administration itself had actually just installed in Ukraine (and that phone-conversation appointing Ukraine's new leader is explained here ), in what the head of the "private CIA" firm Stratfor has correctly called "the most blatant coup in history." ( Here's more explanation of that coup which was done by Obama. )

One cannot even begin accurately to understand the impeachment proceedings against America's current President Donald Trump ("Ukrainegate"), unless one first knows and understands accurately what the relationships were between Trump and the current Government of Ukraine, and the role that the Obama Administration had played in forming that Government (installing it), and the role that Hunter Biden had been hired to perform for his actual boss at Burisma, Kolomoysky, soon after Obama (via Obama's agent Victoria Nuland) had installed Ukraine's new Government.

As I had written on 28 September 2019 , "In order to understand why Ukraine's President Voldomyr Zelensky doesn't want the dirt about Joe Biden to become public, one needs to know that Hunter Biden's boss and benefactor at Burisma Holdings was, at least partly, Zelensky's boss and benefactor until Zelensky became Ukraine's President, and that revealing this would open up a can of worms which could place that former boss and benefactor of both men into prison at lots of places ."

That article, at the phrase " dug up in 2012," discussed and linked to a careful 2012 study of Burisma which had actually been done in Ukraine by an investigative nonprofit (Antac) funded by America's billionaire George Soros (who was another major funder of the 2014 Ukrainian coup , as well as of Barack Obama's political career itself) in order to help to bring down Yanukovych. However, what this study found was not the incriminating evidence against Zlochevsky which had been hoped. It found instead that the person who owned the controlling interest in Burisma was not really the Yanukovych-supporter Mykola Zlochevsky; it was, in fact, the Ukrainian billionaire Ihor Kolomoysky, who supported Yanukovych's overthrow. Kolomoysky, shortly after the coup, became appointed as the governor in a region of Ukraine, by the Obama Administration's post-coup Ukrainian Government. Obama's financial backer Soros knew, or should have known, that Zlochevsky had sold almost all of his Burisma holdings to Kolomoysky in 2011, but Obama's Administration was nonetheless trying to get the newly installed Ukrainian Government to prosecute Zlochevsky because Zlochevsky was associated with the Ukrainian President whom Obama had just overthrown. Hunter Biden's function was to help to protect Mr. Kolomoysky against being targeted by the newly installed Government in the anti-corruption campaign that the Obama Administration and the EU were pressing upon that new Ukrainian Government. Hunter Biden was to serve as a US fixer for his new boss Kolomoysky, to deflect the anti-corruption campaign away from Kolomoysky as a target and toward Zlochevsky as a target. And Hunter's father, Joe Biden, followed through on that, by demanding that Ukraine prosecute Zlochevsky, not Kolomoysky. Soros isn't really against corruption; he is against corruption by countries that he wants to take over, and that he uses the US Government in order to take over. Neoconservatism is simply imperialism, which has always been the foreign-affairs ideology of aristocrats and of billionaires. (In America's case, that includes both Democratic and Republican billionaires.) So, it's just imperialism in America. All billionaires who care at all about international relations are imperialists; and, in America, that's called "neoconservative." The American issue regarding Ukraine was never actually Ukraine's corruption. Corruption is standard and accepted throughout the US-and-allied countries; but against countries they want to take over it becomes a PR point in order to win acceptance by the gulls, of their own country's imperialism and its own associated corruption. "Our country's corruption is acceptable, but yours is not," is the view. That's the standard imperialist view. Neoconservatism -- imperialism anywhere, actually -- is always based on lies. Imperialism, in fact, is part of nationalism, but it is excluded by patriotism; and no nationalist is a patriot. No patriot is a nationalist. Whereas a nationalist supports his country's billionaires, a patriot supports his country's residents -- all of them, his countrymen, on a democratic basis, everyone having equal rights, not the richest of the residents having the majority or all of the rights. A nationalist is one-dollar-one-vote; a patriot is one resident one vote. The only people who are intelligently nationalist are billionaires and the agents they employ. All other nationalists are their gulls. Everyone else is a patriot. Ordinarily, there are far more gulls than patriots.

Information hasn't yet been published regarding what Trump's agent Rudolph Giuliani has found regarding Burisma, but the links in the present article link through to the evidence that I am aware of, and it's evidence which contradicts what the US-and-allied press have been reporting about the Bidens' involvement in Ukraine. So: this information might be what Trump's team intend to reveal after the Democratic-Party-controlled House of Representatives indicts Trump (send to the Republican Senate a recommendation to replace him by Mike Pence as America's President), if they will do that; but, regardless, this is what I have found, which US-and-allied news-media have conspicuously been not only ignoring but blatantly contradicting – contradicting the facts that are being documented by the evidence that is presented here .Consequently, the links in this article prove the systematic lying by America's press, regarding Ukrainegate.

After the Soros-funded Antac had discovered in 2012 that Kolomoysky ruled Burisma, the great independent Australian investigative journalist who has lived for 30 years in and reported from Moscow, John Helmer , headlined on 19 February 2015 one of his blockbuster news-reports, "THE HUNT FOR BURISMA, PART II -- WHAT ROLE FOR IGOR KOLOMOISKY, WHAT LONDON MISSED, WHAT WASHINGTON DOESN'T WANT TO SEE" , and he linked there not only to Ukrainian Government records but also to UK Government records, and also to corporate records in Cyprus, Panama, and elsewhere, to document that, indeed, Kolomoysky controlled Burisma. So, all of the US-and-allied 'news'-reporting, which merely assumes that Zlochevsky controlled this firm when Hunter Biden became appointed to its board, are clearly false. (See this, for example, from Britain's Guardian , two years later, on 12 April 2017, simply ignoring both the Antac report and the even-more-detailed Helmer report, and presenting Zlochevsky -- Kolomoysky's decoy -- as the appropriate target to be investigated for Burisma's alleged corruption.) So: when Joe Biden demanded that Ukraine's Government prosecute Zlochevsky, Biden was not, as he claims he was, demanding a foreign Government to act against corruption; he was instead demanding that foreign Government (Ukraine) to carry out his own boss, Barack Obama's, agenda, to smear as much as he could Viktor Yanukovych -- the Ukrainian President whom Obama had overthrown. This isn't to say that Yanukovych was not corrupt; every post-Soviet Ukrainian President, and probably Prime Minister too, has been corrupt. Ukraine is famous for being corrupt. But, this doesn't necessarily mean that Zlochevsky was corrupt. However, Kolomoysky is regarded, in Ukraine, as being perhaps the most corrupt of all Ukrainians.

Perhaps Kolomoysky's major competitor has been Victor Pinchuk, who has long been famous in Washington for donating heavily to Bill and Hillary Clintons' causes. For example, on 11 March 2018, the independent investigative journalist Jeff Carlson, bannered "Victor Pinchuk, the Clintons & Endless Connections" and he reported that

Victor Pinchuk is a Ukrainian billionaire.

He is the founder of Interpipe, a steel pipe manufacturer. He also owns Credit Dnipro Bank, some ferroalloy plants and a media empire.

He is married to Elena Pinchuk, the daughter of former Ukrainian President Leonid Kuchma.

Pinchuk's been accused of profiting immensely from the purchase of state-owned assets at severely below-market prices through political favoritism.

Pinchuk used his media empire to deflect blame from his father-in-law, Kuchma, for the September 16, 2000 murder of journalist Georgiy Gongadze. Kuchma was never charged but is widely believed to have ordered the murder. A series of recordings would seem to back up this assertion.

On April 4 through April 12 2016, Ukrainian Parliamentarian Olga Bielkov had four meetings – with Samuel Charap (International Institute for Strategic Studies), Liz Zentos (National Security Council), Michael Kimmage (State Dept) and David Kramer (McCain Institute).

Doug Schoen filed FARA documents showing that he was paid $40,000 a month by Victor Pinchuk (page 5) – in part to arrange these meetings.

Schoen attempted to arrange another 72 meetings with Congressmen and media (page 10). It is unknown how many meetings took place.

Schoen has worked for both Bill and Hillary Clinton.

Schoen helped Pinchuk establish ties with the Clinton Foundation. The Wall Street Journal reported how Schoen connected Pinchuk with senior Clinton State Department staffers in order to pressure former Ukrainian President Yanukovych to release Yulia Tymoshenko – a political rival of Yanukovych – from jail.

The relationship between Pinchuk and the Clintons continued.

A large network of collaborators, all connected to NATO's PR agency the Atlantic Council, were also discussed and linked to; and, in one of the video clips, Victoria Nuland headed a panel discussion in Munich Germany at which numerous leading Democratic Party neoconservatives, and neoconservative foreign leaders, discussed how wonderful the "Deep State" is, and praised the Republican neocon John McCain, who had helped Victoria Nuland to install the fascist Government of Ukraine.

On 6 October 2019, Helmer headlined "UKRAINIAN OLIGARCH VICTOR PINCHUK IS PUTTING HIS MONEY ON JOE BIDEN FOR PRESIDENT AT $40,000 PER MONTH – THAT'S $3,000 MORE PER MONTH THAN BURISMA WAS PAYING HUNTER BIDEN" . He reported:

Joe Biden's campaign for president, as well as his defence against charges of corrupt influence peddling and political collusion in the Ukraine, are being promoted in Washington by the Ukrainian oligarch Victor Pinchuk through the New York lobbyist, candidate adviser and pollster, Douglas Schoen (left).

This follows several years of attempts by Pinchuk and Schoen to buy influence with Donald Trump, first as a candidate and then as president; with Trump's lawyer Rudy Giuliani; and with John Bolton, Trump's National Security Adviser in 2018 and 2019. Their attempts failed.

Pinchuk has been paying Schoen more than $40,000 every month for eight years. The amount of money is substantially greater than Biden's son Hunter Biden was paid by Pinchuk's Ukrainian rival Igor Kolomoisky through the oil company Burisma and Rosemont Seneca Bohai, Biden's New York front company.

Pinchuk's message for the Democratic candidates and US media, according to Schoen's Fox News [4] broadcast in August, is: "Stop killing your own, stop beating up on your own frontrunner, Joe Biden."

On November 12th, the New York Times headlined "Ukraine's President Seeks Face-to-Face Meeting With Putin" and reported that Zelensky is now sufficiently disturbed at the declining level of the EU's and Trump Administration's continuing support for Ukraine's Government, so that Zelensky is desperately trying to restore friendly relations with Russia. The next day, that newspaper bannered "A Ukrainian Billionaire Fought Russia. Now He's Ready to Embrace It." This report said: "Mr. Kolomoisky, widely seen as Ukraine's most powerful figure outside government, given his role as the patron of the recently elected President Volodymyr Zelensky, has experienced a remarkable change of heart: It is time, he said, for Ukraine to give up on the West and turn back toward Russia ." Kolomoysky, in other words, who had been on Obama's team in Ukraine, no longer is on the US team under Trump. A reasonable inference would be that Kolomoysky increasingly fears the possibility of being prosecuted. Continuation of the Obama plan for Ukraine seems increasingly unlikely.

Here are some crimes for which Kolomoysky might be prosecuted:

Allegedly, Kolomoysky, along with the newly appointed Ukrainian Interior Minister, Arsen Avakov, masterminded the 2 May 2014 extermination of perhaps hundreds of people who had been trapped inside Odessa's Trade Unions Building after those victims had distributed anti-coup flyers.

Allegedly, Kolomoysky, on 20 March 2015, brought to a board meeting of Ukraine's gas-distribution company UkrTransNafta, of which Kolomoysky was a minority shareholder, his hired thugs armed with guns , in an unsuccessful attempt to intimidate the rest of the board to impose Kolomoysky's choice to lead the company. Ukraine's President, Petro Poroshenko, soon thereafter, yielded to the pressure from Ukraine's bondholders to fire Kolomoysky as a regional governor, and then nationalized Ukraine's biggest bank, PrivatBank, which had looted billions of dollars from depositors' accounts and secreted the proceeds in untraceable offshore accounts, so that the bank had to be bailed out by Ukraine's taxpayers. (Otherwise, there would have been huge riots against Poroshenko.) Zelensky is squeezed between his funder and his public, and so dithers. For example, on 10 September 2019, the Financial Times reported that "The IMF has warned Ukraine that backsliding on Privatbank's nationalisation would jeopardise its $3.9bn standby programme and that officials expect Ukraine to push for recovery of the $5.5bn spent on rescuing the bank." Stealing $5.5B is a big crime, and this was Obama's Ukrainian Government. Will it also be Trump's?

There are others, but those could be starters.

So, both Kolomoysky and Zelensky are evidently now considering to seek Moscow's protection, though Kolomoysky had previously been a huge backer of, and helped to fund, killing of the Donbassers who rejected the Obama-imposed Russia-hating Ukrainian regime.

Any such prosecutions could open up, to international scrutiny, Obama's entire Ukrainian operation. That, in turn, would expose Obama's command-complicity in the ethnic cleansing operation , which Kolomoysky's co-planner of the 2 May 2014 massacre inside the Odessa Trade Unions Building, Arsen Avakov, euphemistically labelled the "Anti Terrorist Operation" or "ATO," to eliminate as many as possible of the residents in the former Donbass region of Ukraine, where over 90% of the voters had voted for Yanukovych.

It could also open up the enormous can of worms that is George Soros, because though Trump doesn't at all care about corruption in Ukraine (nor should he, since that's a Ukrainian domestic matter and therefore not appropriate and certainly not a matter of US national-security interest), Soros himself was quite possibly breaking both national and international laws in his interventions in Ukraine, and possibly also in his related investments or his threats not to invest there. Not only was he deeply involved in the coup but afterward he was regularly advising Victoria Nuland. Whether even America's laws against insider-trading were violated should also be considered.

If Putin offers no helping hand to Zelensky, what will happen to Ukraine, and to Ukrainians? Might Trump finally campaign for the United States to become one of the "States Parties" to the International Criminal Court , so that Obama, Nuland, Soros, and others who had overthrown Ukraine's democratically elected Government could be tried there? How would Trump be able to immunize himself for such crimes as his own 14 April 2018 unprovoked missile-attack against Syria ? How likely is it that he would ever actually become a supporter of international law, instead of an imperialist (such as he has always been) and therefore opponent of international law? He, after all, is himself a billionaire, and no billionaire has ever fought for international law except in an instance where he benefited from it -- never for international law itself . Trump isn't likely to be the first. But here's how it could happen:

Donald Trump has surrounded himself with neoconservatives. There's not much distance between his policies toward Ukraine versus Barack Obama's and Joe Biden's. However, after Trump becomes impeached in the House (if that happens) and the impeachment trial starts in the Republican US Senate, there will then be a perfect opportunity for Trump to embarrass the Democratic Party profoundly by exposing not only Joe Biden but Biden's boss Obama as having caused the war in Ukraine . In order for him to do that, however, he'd also need to expose the rot of neoconservatism. Nobody in Washington does that, except, perhaps the rebelling Democrat, Tulsi Gabbard, and she's rejected in the national polls now by the public within her own Party . Neoconservatism is the uniform foreign-policy ideology of America's billionaires, both Republican and Democratic, and this is why Washington is virtually 100% neocon. In America, wealth certainly doesn't trickle down, but ideology apparently does -- and that's not merely neoliberalism but also its international-affairs extension: neoconservatism. Nonetheless, if a Trump re-election ticket were Trump for President, and Gabbard for Vice President, it might be able to beat anything that the Democrats could put up against it, because Trump would then head a ticket which would remain attractive to Republicans and yet draw many independents and even the perhaps 5% of Democrats who like her. Only Sanders, if he becomes the Democratic nominee (and who is the least-neoconservative member of the US Senate), would attract some of Gabbard's supporters, but he wouldn't be getting any money from the 607 people who mainly fund American politics. The 2020 US Presidential contest could just go hog-wild. However, America's billionaires probably won't let that happen. Though there are only 607 of therm, they have enormous powers over the Government, far more than do all other Americans put together. The US Supreme Court made it this way, such as by the 1976 Buckley decision , and the 2010 Citizens United decision .

So: while justice in this impeachment matter (and in the 2020 elections) is conceivable, it is extremely unlikely. The public are too deceived -- by America's Big-Money people.

As the neoconservative Democratic Representative from Vermont, Peter Welch, said in the impeachment hearings, on November 19th :

And you know, I'll say this to President Trump. You want to investigate Joe Biden? You want to investigate Hunter Biden? Go at it. Do it. Do it hard. Do it dirty. Do it the way you do, do it. Just don't do it by asking a foreign leader to help you in your campaign. That's your job, it's not his.

My goal in these hearings is two things. One is to get an answer to Colonel Vindman's question ["Is it improper for the President of the United States to demand a foreign government investigate a United States citizen and political opponent?"] . And the second coming out of this is for us as a Congress to return to the Ukraine policy that Nancy Pelosi and Kevin McCarthy both support, it's not investigations, it's the restoration of democracy in Ukraine and the resistance of Russian aggression.

Though Zelensky had won Ukraine's Presidency by a record-shattering 73% because he had promised to end the war (which the US had started), America's Deep State are refusing to allow that -- they want to force him to accept more US-made weapons and more US training of Ukraine's troops in how to use them against its next-door neighbor Russia.

Furthermore, in some respects, Trump is even more neoconservative than Obama was. Trump single-handedly nullified Obama's only effective and good achievement, the Iran nuclear deal. Against Iran, Trump is considerably more of a neocon than was Obama. Trump has squeezed Iranians so hard with his sanctions as to block other countries from buying from and selling to Iran; and this blockade has greatly impoverished Iranians, who now are rioting against their Government. Trump wants them to overthrow their Government. His plan might succeed. Trump's biggest donor, Sheldon Adelson , hates Iranians, and Trump is his man. On Iran, Trump remains a super-neocon. Perhaps Adelson doesn't require him to hate Russians too.

Furthermore, on November 17th, the same day when riots broke out in Iran against Iran's Government, Abdullah Muradoğlu headlined in Turkey's newspaper Yeni Safak , "Bolivia's Morales was overthrown by a Western coup just like Iran's Mosaddeg" , and he presented strong circumstantial evidence that that coup, too -- which had occurred on November 10th -- had been a US operation. How could Trump criticize Obama for the coup against Ukraine when Trump's own coup against Bolivia is in the news? America is now a two-Party fascist dictatorship. One criminal US President won't publicly expose the crimes of another criminal US President who was his predecessor.

The next much-discussed witness that the Democrats brought forth to testify against Trump was America's Ambassador to the EU, Gordon Sondland, on November 20th. Sondland was a hotels and real-estate tycoon like Trump. Prior to Trump's becoming President, Sondland had had no experience in diplomacy. At the start of 2017, "four companies registered to Sondland donated $1 million to the Donald Trump inaugural committee" ; and, then, a year later, Trump appointed him to this Ambassadorial post. Sondland evasively responded to the aggressive questioning by Senate Democrats trying to get him to say that Trump had been trying to "bribe" Zelensky. Then, the Lawfare Blog of the staunchly neoconservative Brookings Institution's Benjamin Wittes headlined "Gordon Sondland Accuses the President of Bribery" and Wittes asserted that "today, Amb. Gordon Sondland, testifying before the House in the ongoing impeachment inquiry, offered a crystal clear account of how President Trump engaged in bribery." But Sondland provided no evidence except his opinion, which can be seen online at "Opening Statement before the United States House of Representatives" , when he said:

Fourth, as I testified previously, Mr. Giuliani's requests were a quid pro quo for arranging a White House visit for President Zelensky. Mr. Giuliani demanded that Ukraine make a public statement announcing investigations of the 2016 election/DNC server and Burisma. Mr. Giuliani was expressing the desires of the President of the United States, and we knew that these investigations were important to the President.

However, in his prior (closed-door) 17 October 2019 testimony to the Senators, he had said (pp. 35-6) that on September 9th:

I asked the President, what do you want from Ukraine? The President responded, nothing. There is no quid pro. The President repeated, no quid pro. No quid pro quo multiple times. This was a very short call. And I recall that the President was really in a bad mood. I tried hard to address Ambassador Taylor's concerns because he is valuable and [an] effective diplomat, and I took very seriously the issues he raised. I did not want Ambassador Taylor to leave his post and generate even more turnover in the Ukraine Mission."

That "Ambassador Taylor" was William. B. Taylor Jr. , a West Point, Army, and NATO neoconservative, whom George W. Bush had made US Ambassador to Ukraine in 2006-9, and whom Trump, at the suggestion of Trump's neoconservative Secretary of State Mike Pompeo , had appointed to succeed Ambassador Yovanovitch in May.

The testimony of all of these people was entirely in keeping with their neoconservatism and was therefore extremely hostile toward anything but preparing Ukraine to join NATO and serve on the front line of America's war to conquer Russia . Trump might be too stupid to understand anything about ideology or geostrategy, but only if a person accepts neoconservatism is the anger that these subordinates of his express toward him for his being viewed by them as placing other concerns (whether his own, or else America's for withdrawing America from Obama's war against Russia) suitable reason for Congress to force Trump out of office. Given that Trump, even in Sondland's account, did say "The President responded, nothing. There is no quid pro. The President repeated, no quid pro. No quid pro quo multiple times," there is nothing that's even close to a "beyond a reasonable doubt" standard which is provided by their personal feelings that Trump had a quid-pro-quo about anything regarding Ukraine -- a policy of Obama's that Trump should instead firmly have abandoned and denounced as soon as he became President. Testimony from his own enemies, whom Trump had been stupid enough to have appointed, when he hadn't simply extended Obama's neoconservative policies and personnel regarding Ukraine, falls far short of impeachable. But right and wrong won't determine the outcome here anyway, because America has become a two-party, one-ideology, dictatorship.

This is what happens when billionaires control a country . It produces the type of foreign policies the country's billionaires want, rather than what the public actually need. This is America's Government, today. It's drastically different than what America's Founders had hoped. Instead of its representing the states equally with two Senators for each, and instead of representing the citizens equally, with proportional representation in the US House, and instead of yet a third system of the Electoral College for choosing the Government's Chief Executive and Commander-in-Chief, it has become thoroughly corrupted to being, in effect, one-dollar-one-vote -- an aristocracy of wealth controlling the entire Government -- exactly what the Founders had waged the Revolution in order to overthrow and prevent from ever recurring: a dictatorial aristocracy, as constituting our Government.

PS: Though I oppose almost everything that the hearings' Ranking Minority Member, the neoconservative (and, of course, also neoliberal) Republican Devin Nunes , stands for, I close here with his superb summary of the hearings, on November 21st , in which he validly described the Democrats' scandalously trashy Ukrainegate case against Trump (even though he refused to look deeper to the issues I raise in this article -- he dealt here merely with how "shoddy" the case the Democrats had presented was):

Throughout these bizarre hearings, the Democrats have struggled to make the case that President Trump committed some impeachable offense on his phone call with Ukrainian president Zelensky. The offense itself changes depending on the day ranging from quid pro quo to extortion, to bribery, to obstruction of justice, then back to quid pro quo. It's clear why the Democrats have been forced onto this carousel of accusations. President Trump had good reason to be wary of Ukrainian election meddling against his campaign and of widespread corruption in that country. President Zelensky, who didn't even know aid to Ukraine had been paused at the time of the call, has repeatedly said there was nothing wrong with the conversation. The aid was resumed without the Ukrainians taking the actions they were supposedly being coerced into doing.

Aid to Ukraine under President Trump has been much more robust than it was under President Obama, thanks to the provision of Javelin anti-tank weapons. As numerous witnesses have testified, temporary holds on foreign aid occur fairly frequently for many different reasons. So how do we have an impeachable offense here when there's no actual misdeed and no one even claiming to be a victim? The Democrats have tried to solve this dilemma with a simple slogan, "he got caught." President Trump, we are to believe, was just about to do something wrong and getting caught was the only reason he backed down from whatever nefarious thought crime the Democrats are accusing him of almost committing.

I once again urge Americans to continue to consider the credibility of the Democrats on this Committee, who are now hurling these charges for the last three years. It's not president Trump who got caught, it's the Democrats who got caught. They got caught falsely claiming they had more than circumstantial evidence that Trump colluded with Russians to hack the 2016 election. They got caught orchestrating this entire farce with the whistleblower and lying about their secret meetings with him. They got caught defending the false allegations of the Steele dossier, which was paid for by them. They got caught breaking their promise that impeachment would only go forward with bipartisan support because of how damaging it is to the American people.

They got caught running a sham impeachment process between secret depositions, hidden transcripts, and an unending flood of Democrat leaks to the media. They got caught trying to obtain nude photos of President Trump from Russian pranksters pretending to be Ukrainians, and they got caught covering up for Alexandra Chalupa, a Democratic National Committee operative, who colluded with Ukrainian officials to smear the Trump campaign by improperly redacting her name from deposition transcripts, and refusing to let Americans hear her testimony as a witness in these proceedings. That is the Democrats pitiful legacy in recent years. They got caught.

Meanwhile, their supposed star witness testified that he was guessing that President Trump was tying Ukrainian aid to investigations despite no one telling him that was true, and the president himself explicitly telling him the opposite, that he wanted nothing from Ukraine. Ladies and gentlemen, unless the Democrats once again scramble their kangaroo court rules, today's hearing marks the merciful end of this spectacle in the Impeachment Committee, formerly known as the Intelligence Committee. Whether the Democrats reap the political benefit they want from this impeachment remains to be seen, but the damage they have done to this country will be long lasting. Will this wrenching attempt to overthrow the president? They have pitted Americans against one another and poison the mind of fanatics who actually believe the entire galaxy of bizarre accusations they have levelled against the president since the day the American people elected him.

I sincerely hope the Democrats in this affair [end this] as quickly as possible so our nation can begin to heal the many wounds it has inflicted on us. The people's faith in government and their belief that their vote counts for something has been shaken. From the Russia hoax to this shoddy Ukrainian sequel, the Democrats got caught. Let's hope they finally learn a lesson, give their conspiracy theories a rest, and focus on governing for a change. In addition, Mr. Chairman, pursuant to House Rule XI, clause 2(j)(1), the Republican members transmit a request to convene a minority day of hearings. Today you have blocked key witnesses that we have requested from testifying in this partisan impeachment inquiry. This rule was not displaced by H.Res.660, and therefore under House Rule 11 clause 1(a), it applies to the Democrats impeachment inquiry. We look forward to the chair promptly scheduling an agreed upon time for the minority day of hearings so that we can hear from key witnesses that you have continually blocked from testifying.

I'd also like to take a quick moment on an assertion Ms. Hill made in the statement that she submitted to this Committee, in which she claimed that some Committee members deny that Russia meddled in the 2016 election. As I noted in my opening statement on Wednesday, but in March, 2018, Intelligence Committee Republicans published the results of a year long investigation into Russian meddling. The 240 page report analyzed 2016 Russian meddling campaign, the US government reaction to it, Russian campaigns in other countries and provided specific recommendations to improve American election security. I would [have] asked my staff to hand these reports to our two witnesses today just so I can have a recollection of their memory. As America may or may not know, Democrats refused to sign on to the Republican report. Instead, they decided to adopt minority views, filled with collusion conspiracy theories. Needless to say, it is entirely possible for two separate nations to engage in election meddling at the same time, and Republicans believe we should take meddling seriously by all foreign countries regardless of which campaign is the target.

Later that same day, the New York Times headlined "The Impeachment Hearings Revealed a Lot -- None of It Great for Trump" , and CNN headlined "The public impeachment hearings were a total GOP disaster" . The non-mainstream news-medium Zero Hedge instead bannered, "Amid Impeachment Circus, Dems Sneak PATRIOT Act Renewal Past The American People" , and reported that the "bill was pushed through with not a single Republican vote." The following day, the AP headlined "Analysis: Mountain of impeachment evidence is beyond dispute" and closed "Asked what the consequences are if Congress allows an American president to ask a foreign government to investigate a political rival, [Fiona] Hill said simply, 'It's a very bad precedent.'"

The latest (2019) Reuters international survey in which over 2,000 people in each one of 38 countries were asked whether they agree that "You can trust most news most of the time" shows that the United States scores #32 out of the 38, at the very top of the bottom 16% of all of the 38 countries surveyed, regarding trust in the news-media. Reuters had previously found, in their 2018 edition , that, among Americans, "those who identify on the left (49%) have almost three times as much trust in the news as those on the right (17%). The left gave their support to newspapers like the Washington Post and New York Times while the right's alienation from mainstream media has become ever more entrenched." In the 2019 edition, what had been 49% rose now to 53%, and what had been 17% sank now to 9%: the billionaires' (i.e., mainstream) media are trusted now almost only by liberals. What the media report is considered trustworthy almost only by liberals, in today's America. By 53% to only 9% -- an almost 6 to 1 ratio -- the skeptics of the billionaires' press are Republicans. Of course, if the media are distrusted, then the nation can't be functioning as a democracy. But the media will be distrusted if they lie as much as America's do. Untrusted 'news'-media are a sure indication that the nation is a dictatorship (such as it is if the billionaires control the media). In America, only liberals think that America is a democracy and therefore might possess the basic qualification (democracy) to decide what nations need to be regime-changed (such as America did to Iran, Iraq, Libya, Honduras, Bolivia, and is still trying to do to Venezuela, Cuba, Nicaragua, Iran again, Syria, and Yemen; but not to -- for examples -- Saudi Arabia, UAE, and Israel). Liberals trust America's dictatorship as if it were instead a democracy. Conservatives do not; nor, of course, do progressives. FDR's vision, of a United Nations which would set and enforce the rules for international relations (neither the US nor any other country would do that), is now even more rejected by the Democratic Party than by the Republican Party. And the politically topsy-turvy result is Democrats trying to impeach the Republican Trump for his trying to cut back on Obama's imperialistic ( anti -FDR) agenda. Trump, after all, didn't do the coup to Ukraine; Obama did .


Investigative historian Eric Zuesse is the author, most recently, of They're Not Even Close: The Democratic vs. Republican Economic Records, 1910-2010, and of CHRIST'S VENTRILOQUISTS: The Event that Created Christianity.

[Dec 23, 2019] How 2 Soviet migr s Fueled the Trump Impeachment Flames - The New York Times

Dec 23, 2019 | www.nytimes.com

... ... ...

Over a dinner of the "Presidential Cheeseburger" and wedge salad, Mr. Parnas relayed a rumor that Marie L. Yovanovitch, then the American ambassador to Ukraine, was bad-mouthing the president -- an unsubstantiated claim that Ms. Yovanovitch has denied, according to two people with knowledge of the dinner.

The exchange foreshadowed the role that Mr. Parnas and Mr. Fruman would come to play in Mr. Trump's Ukrainian campaign.

Less than two weeks later, Mr. Parnas met with another critic of Ms. Yovanovitch, Representative Pete Sessions of Texas, in his Washington congressional office. Mr. Parnas, who had recently met Mr. Sessions at a fund-raiser, showed him a map of a crucial pipeline related to their gas venture, a photo shows.

By the end of the meeting, though, the topic had shifted to Ms. Yovanovitch, and Mr. Parnas reiterated what he had heard, a person briefed on the meeting said. After the meeting, Mr. Sessions sent a letter to Secretary of State Mike Pompeo saying that Ms. Yovanovitch had spoken disdainfully of the Trump administration, and suggesting her removal. Mr. Sessions, who lost his re-election bid last year, has previously said he wrote the letter independently of Mr. Parnas and Mr. Fruman, after speaking to congressional colleagues.

Federal prosecutors contend in the indictment against Mr. Parnas that he was not just making small talk but sought to oust Ms. Yovanovitch "at the request of one or more Ukrainian government officials," which could be a violation of federal laws that require Americans to register with the Justice Department when lobbying for foreign political interests. The indictment did not name any Ukrainian officials.

The men have not been charged with anything related to Ms. Yovanovitch, but prosecutors have said that additional charges are likely, at least for Mr. Parnas .

... ... ...

[Dec 18, 2019] Rudy Giuliani Yovanovitch Was Part Of The Cover-Up, She Had To Be Ousted

Highly recommended!
Notable quotes:
"... She was OBSTRUCTING JUSTICE and that's not the only thing she was doing. She at minimum enabled Ukrainian collusion." ..."
Dec 17, 2019 | www.zerohedge.com

Via SaraACarter.com,

"Trump was simply asking new Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky -- in a July phone call -- to investigate crimes at the "highest levels" of both Kiev and Washington," Rudy Giuliani, a personal attorney for President Trump, told Laura Ingraham on "The Ingraham Angle."

"So, he is being impeached for doing the right thing as president of the United States," he said.

Giuliani told Laura Ingraham on "The Ingraham Angle" that he helped forced out Yovanovitch because she was corrupt and obstructing the investigation into Ukraine and the Bidens.

Dem's impeachment for innocent conduct is intended to obstruct the below investigations of Obama-era corruption:

- Billions of laundered $
- Billions, mostly US $, widely misused
- Extortion
- Bribery
- DNC collusion w/ Ukraine to destroy candidate Trump

Much more to come.

-- Rudy Giuliani (@RudyGiuliani) December 15, 2019

He told Ingraham that he needed her out of the way because she was corrupt. Giuliani said he was not the first person to go to the president with concerns about the diplomat.

In more tweets Tuesday, Giuliani elaborated:

Yovanovitch needed to be removed for many reasons most critical she was denying visas to Ukrainians who wanted to come to US and explain Dem corruption in Ukraine. She was OBSTRUCTING JUSTICE and that's not the only thing she was doing. She at minimum enabled Ukrainian collusion.

-- Rudy Giuliani (@RudyGiuliani) December 17, 2019

" Yovanovitch needed to be removed for many reasons most critical she was denying visas to Ukrainians who wanted to come to US and explain Dem corruption in Ukraine.

She was OBSTRUCTING JUSTICE and that's not the only thing she was doing. She at minimum enabled Ukrainian collusion."

https://youtu.be/qFCeznGIXKs


G. Wally , 2 hours ago link

Here is why she had to go:

"

Dirty Money: George Soros' Corrupt Ties to Ukraine

https://100percentfedup.com/dirty-money-george-soros-corrupt-ties-to-ukraine/

Marie Yovanovitch was dismissed in March after Trump's allies said she was blocking the probe of Joe Biden and bad-mouthing the Ukrainian Prosecutor General Lutsenko said that she gave him a "do not prosecute list", that included Ukraine MPs and the exact same Sorosfunded NGO president.

George Soros, Marie Yovanovitch, Democrats & Ukraine: How the ...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O51qzCacd-o

Nov 19, 2019Several sources claim former U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine, Marie Yovanovitch, instructed Ukraine officials to keep their hands off investigating the NGO in Ukraine founded by George Soros. Why?"

Any questions? As Putin warned the US: "ask about the 5th floor of the State Department." (where Soros held court!). No wonder the US Commies hate Putin.

American_Buffalo , 3 hours ago link

In case you're wondering where this is headed.....all roads lead to Bill Clinton - the most corrupt man who ever set foot in the White House.

LEEPERMAX , 5 hours ago link

Wow

ONE AMERICA NEWS EXCLUSIVE:

"GUILIANI UKRAINE DOCUMENTARY"

(Part 1) https://youtu.be/Fn4weTY-2zE

(Part 2) https://youtu.be/BK2coiDHLZ4

(Part 3) https://youtu.be/wRFtijtoV6I

Lucifer's Chosen People , 7 hours ago link

MUST READ!!! THOSE US CONGRESSMEN AND SENATORS THAT HAVE DUAL US/ISRAELI CITIZENSHIP

https://conservative-headlines.org/89-of-our-senators-and-congress-hold-dual-citizenship-with-israel/

AlexTheCat3741 , 7 hours ago link

What the Shiffhead Impeachment hearings demonstrated with the appearances of Ms. Yankonitbitch, Bowtie George, and the other "Dindunuffin/Donnonuffin Clowns" is just how much American Taxpayers' money is being wasted employing a bunch of sanctimonious drones who do nothing but get in the way of progress. Successful Corporations remove dead wood like that with downsizing and shakeups. But the Federal Government seems immune to efficiency because our elected officials NEVER DO THEIR JOBS BY USING ZERO BASE BUDGETING TO JUSTIFY EVERY ******* DOLLAR. And so, we now hear of yet another Omnibus Budget being foisted onto American Taxpayers and more wasteful spending that never, never, never, gets reduced. We need a Taxpayer's Revolution in this Country to stop the corrupt theft.

And one more thing: What the Ukrainian Matter reveals is how Foreign Aid is dispensed, handed out by the foreign recipient, and the funds are laundered and kicked back to the corrupt politicians and Deep State Operatives like the Bidens. If $400 Million in palletized untraceable cash can be delivered via a clandestine unmarked airplane at night to Iran supposedly for ransom as the Socialist Media Complex would have us believe in a way that is not consistent with long practiced methods for funds transfer, can we imagine all the billions that have quietly been stolen from us to enrich scum like Barack Obola, Quid Pro Joe, The Clintons, and so many others? IN THE MEANTIME, PRESIDENT TRUMP CAN'T GET A DIME TO SPEND ON BUILDING A WALL TO STOP THE ILLEGAL ALIEN COCKROACH INVASION.

MauiJeff , 7 hours ago link

Yovanovitch pulled the "poor me federal" employee act. I worked for the Feds for 31 years most as a manger and Yovanovitch victim act is what all federal employees pull when they get in trouble. Blah Blah my 30 years of service, my awards, my appraisals blah blah. She said that she had no concern about Hunter Biden while being hailed as a corruption fighter. Blah blah.

DaiRR , 8 hours ago link

It's a crime that State Department people and ambassadors can have the same ethnic origin as the countries they serve in. It's a recipe for personal/family agendas, corruption and not representing the best interests of the United States. Of course if you're a DemoRat, you're always corrupt, as they have proven it is a given.

wdg , 9 hours ago link

Rudy Giuliani: Yovanovitch Was Part Of The Cover-Up, She Had To Be Ousted.

"Ousted"? I thought the penalty for high treason was hanging. What are they waiting for? Hang the lot and in a public square near Congress so that all the traitors who reside in Congress and the highest levels of government and banking get a sense of what awaits them.

peippe , 9 hours ago link

she acted in the best interests of the former WH.

she was a good little bitch, just didn't notice the chess board had changed hands.

That's why Trump removed her. Can't punish an ignorant former ambassador any more that that.

chubbar , 10 hours ago link

I sure hope Trump wakes the **** up and stops this nonsense in NY!!!!

https://www.conservativereview.com/news/trump-must-go-new-yorks-violation-federal-immigration-law/

"At the end of the month, almost all criminals arrested for state crimes in New York, including sex crimes , will be released without posting bail. It is a suicidal policy, but it is nonetheless the state’s prerogative to engage in such suicide. What is not its prerogative is the New York law that took effect this week granting driver’s licenses to illegal aliens and blocking ICE access to criminal enforcement information. We have a national union with a federal government controlling immigration for a reason, and it’s time for the Trump administration to show state officials who has the final say over this issue.

Beginning this week, the NY state government is inviting any and all illegal aliens , with or without criminal records, to apply for driver’s licenses. As documentation , they can offer consular ID cards, which are fraught with fraud, expired work permits, or foreign birth certificates. They can even offer Border Crossing Cards, which are only valid for 72 hours and for a stay in the country near the border area! The state law further prohibits state and county officials from disclosing any information to ICE and bars ICE and Customs and Border Protection (CBP) from accessing N.Y. Department of Motor Vehicles (NYDMV) records and information.

Rocco Vertuccio@RoccoNY1

This is the line outside a @nysdmv office in #Queens . About a 100 most #undocumentedimmigrants applying for a drivers license for the first time bc #greenlightlaw is now in effect.

656

7:52 AM - Dec 16, 2019

Twitter Ads info and privacy

1,237 people are talking about this

It’s truly hard to overstate the enormity of the public safety crisis this law, dubbed “the green light law,” will spawn. There are currently 3.3 million aliens in the ICE non-detained docket who remain at large in this country. Just in one year, ICE put detainers on aliens criminally charged with 2,500 homicides. Given that New York has the fourth largest illegal alien population in the country, it is virtually certain that a large number of criminal aliens reside in the state and will now be offered legal resident documents to shield them from removal.

Some might suggest that this is the problem of New York’s residents and that it is their job and their responsibility alone to overturn these laws. But the difference between this law and their general pro-criminal laws is that when it comes to immigration, they simply lack the power to enact such a policy. Rather than the DHS and DOJ bemoaning these laws, it’s time for the Trump administration to actually stop them in their tracks. Otherwise the Supremacy Clause of the Constitution is nothing but ink on parchment.

A violation of federal law and the Constitution

8 U.S.C. § 1324 makes a felon of anyone who “knowing or in reckless disregard of the fact that an alien has come to, entered, or remains in the United States in violation of law, conceals, harbors, or shields from detection, or attempts to conceal, harbor, or shield from detection, such alien in any place.” That statute also makes a criminal of anyone who “encourages or induces an alien to come to, enter, or reside in the United States, knowing or in reckless disregard of the fact that such coming to, entry, or residence is or will be in violation of law” or anyone who “engages in any conspiracy to commit any of the preceding acts, or aids or abets the commission of any of the preceding acts.” Some form of this law has been on the books since 1891.

NY’s new law not only harbors illegal aliens but actually calls on the DMV to notify illegal aliens of any ICE interest in their files. There is only one purpose of this law: to tip off criminal alien fugitives that ICE is looking for them, the most literal violation of the law against shielding them from detection. Would we allow state officials to block information to the FBI, ATF, or DEA?

Moreover, New York’s Green Light law violates the entire purpose of the infamous 1986 amnesty bill, the Immigration Reform and Control Act (IRCA), which was “to combat the employment of illegal aliens.” The law specifically makes it “illegal for employers to knowingly hire, recruit, refer, or continue to employ unauthorized workers.” Yet the rationale for the Green Light Law, according to supporters , was “getting to work” and “ensure that our industries have the labor they need to keep our economy moving.” That directly conflicts with federal law.

Finally, 8 U.S.C. 1373 prohibits state and local government from “in any way restrict[ing]

, any government entity or official from sending to, or receiving from, the Immigration and Naturalization Service information regarding the citizenship or immigration status, lawful or unlawful, of any individual.” The entire purpose of this bill is to restrict all New York government entities from sending information on citizenship status to ICE.

Whether one disagrees with immigration laws or not, nobody can argue that the federal government lacks the power to enforce them. Immigration law is one of the core jobs of the federal government. People are free to go to any state once they are in the country, which is why the Founders transferred immigration policy from the states under the Articles of Confederation to the federal government under the Constitution.

This is why James Madison in Federalist #42 bemoaned that, under the Articles of Confederation, there was a “very serious embarrassment” whereby “an alien therefore legally incapacitated for certain rights in the [one state], may by previous residence only in [another state], elude his incapacity; and thus the law of one State, be preposterously rendered paramount to the law of another, within the jurisdiction of the other.” He feared that without the Constitution’s new idea of giving the federal Congress power “to establish an uniform Rule of Naturalization,” “certain descriptions of aliens, who had rendered themselves obnoxious” would choose states with weak immigration laws as entry points into the union and then move to any other state as legal residents or citizens.

As for immigration without naturalization, because of the issue of the slave trade, the first clause of Article I, Section 9 bars Congress from prohibiting “the Migration or Importation of such Persons as any of the States now existing shall think proper to admit” until the year 1808. Well, Congress has long exercised that power to exclude over the past 200 years. New York has lacked the ability to maintain its own separate immigration scheme for quite some time.

When did the federal government become weak in the face of state rebellion?"

Serapis , 10 hours ago link

The diplomatic service made a big mistake when they abandoned the practice of preventing people from serving in countries where they have an ethnic connection

jovanivic is part of a rabid Ukrainian diaspora, chased out of the country by the Red Army for collaboration with the Nazis.

these people have a vicious, insatiable desire for revenge ...and the US does not need these kind of biases mucking things up

cuba is a similar sit

[Dec 13, 2019] Women have proven over the centuries that they can be just as bloodthirsty when in power

Dec 13, 2019 | discussion.theguardian.com

Marygoal , 10 Dec 2019 14:03

... Women have proven over the centuries that they can be just as bloodthirsty when in power. Indeed one of them is busy in The Hague as we speak.

[Dec 10, 2019] Former Ukrainian Prosecutor Exposes Yovanovich Perjury, George Kent's Motive To Impeach Trump by Sundance

Notable quotes:
"... Ms. Rion spoke with Ukrainian former Prosecutor General Yuriy Lutsenko who outlines how former Ambassador Marie Yovanovitch perjured herself before Congress . ..."
"... What is outlined in this interview is a problem for all DC politicians across both parties. The obviously corrupt influence efforts by U.S. Ambassador Yovanovitch as outlined by Lutsenko were not done independently. ..."
"... Senators from both parties participated in the influence process and part of those influence priorities was exploiting the financial opportunities within Ukraine while simultaneously protecting Joe Biden and his family. This is where Senator John McCain and Senator Lindsey Graham were working with Marie Yovanovitch. ..."
Dec 10, 2019 | www.zerohedge.com

Former Ukrainian Prosecutor Exposes Yovanovich Perjury, George Kent's Motive To Impeach Trump by Tyler Durden Mon, 12/09/2019 - 19:40 0 SHARES

Authored by Sundance via the Conservative Treehouse

In a fantastic display of true investigative journalism, One America News journalist Chanel Rion tracked down Ukrainian witnesses as part of an exclusive OAN investigative series. The evidence being discovered dismantles the baseless Adam Schiff impeachment hoax and highlights many corrupt motives for U.S. politicians.

Ms. Rion spoke with Ukrainian former Prosecutor General Yuriy Lutsenko who outlines how former Ambassador Marie Yovanovitch perjured herself before Congress .

https://www.youtube.com/embed/KgKGjoIkaXU

What is outlined in this interview is a problem for all DC politicians across both parties. The obviously corrupt influence efforts by U.S. Ambassador Yovanovitch as outlined by Lutsenko were not done independently.

Senators from both parties participated in the influence process and part of those influence priorities was exploiting the financial opportunities within Ukraine while simultaneously protecting Joe Biden and his family. This is where Senator John McCain and Senator Lindsey Graham were working with Marie Yovanovitch.

Imagine what would happen if all of the background information was to reach the general public? Thus the motive for Lindsey Graham currently working to bury it.

You might remember George Kent and Bill Taylor testified together.

It was evident months ago that U.S. chargé d'affaires to Ukraine, Bill Taylor, was one of the current participants in the coup effort against President Trump. It was Taylor who engaged in carefully planned text messages with EU Ambassador Gordon Sondland to set-up a narrative helpful to Adam Schiff's political coup effort.

Bill Taylor was formerly U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine ('06-'09) and later helped the Obama administration to design the laundry operation providing taxpayer financing to Ukraine in exchange for back-channel payments to U.S. politicians and their families.

In November Rudy Giuliani released a letter he sent to Senator Lindsey Graham outlining how Bill Taylor blocked VISA's for Ukrainian 'whistle-blowers' who are willing to testify to the corrupt financial scheme.

Unfortunately, as we are now witnessing, Senator Lindsey Graham, along with dozens of U.S. Senators currently serving, may very well have been recipients for money through the aforementioned laundry process. The VISA's are unlikely to get approval for congressional testimony, or Senate impeachment trial witness testimony.

U.S. senators write foreign aid policy, rules and regulations thereby creating the financing mechanisms to transmit U.S. funds. Those same senators then received a portion of the laundered funds back through their various "institutes" and business connections to the foreign government offices; in this example Ukraine. [ex. Burisma to Biden]

The U.S. State Dept. serves as a distribution network for the authorization of the money laundering by granting conflict waivers , approvals for financing (think Clinton Global Initiative), and permission slips for the payment of foreign money. The officials within the State Dept. take a cut of the overall payments through a system of "indulgence fees", junkets, gifts and expense payments to those with political oversight.

If anyone gets too close to revealing the process, writ large, they become a target of the entire apparatus. President Trump was considered an existential threat to this entire process. Hence our current political status with the ongoing coup.

Ambassador Marie Yovanovitch, Senator Lindsey Graham and Senator John McCain meeting with corrupt Ukraine President Petro Poroshenko in December 2016.

It will be interesting to see how this plays out , because, well, in reality all of the U.S. Senators (both parties) are participating in the process for receiving taxpayer money and contributions from foreign governments.

A "Codel" is a congressional delegation that takes trips to work out the payments terms/conditions of any changes in graft financing. This is why Senators spend $20 million on a campaign to earn a job paying $350k/year. The "institutes" is where the real foreign money comes in; billions paid by governments like China, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Ukraine, etc. etc. There are trillions at stake.

[SIDEBAR: Majority Leader Mitch McConnell holds the power over these members (and the members of the Senate Intel Committee), because McConnell decides who sits on what committee. As soon as a Senator starts taking the bribes lobbying funds, McConnell then has full control over that Senator. This is how the system works.]

The McCain Institute is one of the obvious examples of the financing network. And that is the primary reason why Cindy McCain is such an outspoken critic of President Trump. In essence President Trump is standing between her and her next diamond necklace; a dangerous place to be.

So when we think about a Senate Impeachment Trial; and we consider which senators will vote to impeach President Trump, it's not just a matter of Democrats -vs- Republican. We need to look at the game of leverage, and the stand-off between those bribed Senators who would prefer President Trump did not interfere in their process.

McConnell has been advising President Trump which Senators are most likely to need their sensibilities eased. As an example President Trump met with Alaska Senator Lisa Murkowski in November. Senator Murkowski rakes in millions from the multinational Oil and Gas industry; and she ain't about to allow horrible Trump to lessen her bank account any more than Cindy McCain will give up her frequent shopper discounts at Tiffanys.

Senator Lindsey Graham announcing today that he will not request or facilitate any impeachment testimony that touches on the DC laundry system for personal financial benefit (ie. Ukraine example), is specifically motivated by the need for all DC politicians to keep prying eyes away from the swamps' financial endeavors. WATCH:

https://www.youtube.com/embed/HnMb1R1XsyM

This open-secret system of "Affluence and Influence" is how the intelligence apparatus gains such power. All of the DC participants are essentially beholden to the various U.S. intelligence services who are well aware of their endeavors.

There's a ton of exposure here (blackmail/leverage) which allows the unelected officials within the CIA, FBI and DOJ to hold power over the DC politicians. Hold this type of leverage long enough and the Intelligence Community then absorbs that power to enhance their self-belief of being more important than the system.

Perhaps this corrupt sense of grandiosity is what we are seeing play out in how the intelligence apparatus views President Donald J Trump as a risk to their importance.


bhakta , 48 minutes ago link

It is all about cash. Nothing else matters to these people in DC.

Helg Saracen , 42 minutes ago link

Everyone loves money. I like money. The only question is how to earn them. Neither I, nor you, nor many of us will cross a certain moral and ethical line (border), but there are people without morality, without ethical standards, without conscience. We all look the same outwardly, but we are all completely different inside.

Colonel Klinks Ghost , 59 minutes ago link

Jesus Christ I'm glad McStain is gone. So many other corrupt officials need a good brain cancer.

Helg Saracen , 47 minutes ago link

You are an evil person. It was a tragedy. Surgeons failed to save the unfortunate tumor from McCain. ;)

Helg Saracen , 1 hour ago link

Ukraine is Obama's **** , this is not Trump's ****. Trump's stupidity was only one - he got into this ****. I wrote, but I repeat - USA acted as the best friend in relation to Russia, having taken off a leech from Russia and hanging it on itself. Do you know such an estate of Rothschilds - called Israel and its role in the life of USA?

So, Ukraine was for the Russians the same Israel in terms of meaningless spending. Look at Vlad, in 2014 he looked like a fox who was eating a chicken, and on January 1, 2020 he will look like a fox who eating a whole brood of chickens. I think he has portraits of Obama and Trump in his bedroom.

Cat Daddy , 4 hours ago link

Yes, indeed. Lindsey will bury the story, he is on the take. Your tax dollars at work. By the way, the Fed picked up all of the Ukies gold for safekeeping at 33 Liberty St. NY, with Yats permission, of course.... https://www.zerohedge.com/news/2014-11-18/ukraine-admits-its-gold-gone

hanekhw , 4 hours ago link

A glimpse into how elected officials accumulate millions, retire wealthy, pampered and privileged....and I'm not talking pensions I'm talking corruption. Obama, Biden, Hillary, Kerry, Holder, Rice and ALL the senior Obama Administration officials knew of each other's corrupt sinecures.

Soloamber , 4 hours ago link

I am willing to give Graham the benefit of doubt because the alternative means some serious **** is coming .

The politicians have gotten comfortable that people will do nothing . BIG mistake .

Biden seems see oblivious to what he's done and perhaps this explains it . It's ******* routine .

Lets see their financial records from the day they were elected to the present .

SoDamnMad , 20 minutes ago link

You will find very little information. City of London offshore trusts cover their tracks.

Dumpster Elite , 4 hours ago link

The author actually seems to know what's going on behind the curtain, and not just blindly speculating.

docloxvio , 2 hours ago link

Well, it is based on a OAN story. Believe it or not, they actually sent a reporter to Ukraine to talk to people with knowledge of the matter and look what they came up with. Kind of makes you wonder why other well funded news organizations never thought to do something like that.

peippe , 2 hours ago link

it's been known for at least weeks that the embassy Kunt withheld travel visas for Ukraine State attorneys.

so this in endemic,

till Trump. I love this.

Soloamber , 4 hours ago link

How does Obama buy a $ 11+ million water front estate ?

Book sales ? Nah don't think so .

You know what it costs to operate a house and property that big each year plus all the other trappings ?

He ain't driving a 64 Cricket automatic .

Gore left politics with what $2 million and now has over $200 million .

Saving the planet pays big doesn't ?

If Lindsey Graham is part of this where does it end ?

The politicians and central bankers are bankrupting the country , dumping $trillions in debt on kids that can't vote

and now we find out they are taking massive bribes ?

Really not sure if Trump can fix the broken system by himself .

If this is true the Senate will vote him out .

Serrano , 4 hours ago link

Sen. Graham tells Maria Bartiromo he will end impeachment quickly: 1 min. 27 sec.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5DZDDzoG-SI

Birdbob , 5 hours ago link

Shocker Lindsay Graham willing to betray public trust for Dollars? That is what we deserve.

Lord Raglan , 4 hours ago link

I don't know that we deserve this. We are all working people, with families to raise, taxes to pay and the Dems and Commies have been working against us 24/7. And most of them get paid to do so from government jobs that pay them 8 hours a day when many work 1 hour a day, all the while scheming against us.

If Trump wins a second term, he is gonna **** these people up good.

PrideOfMammon , 3 hours ago link

No he isnt. He IS these people.

teolawki , 5 hours ago link

Now that I've read the article, I'm both shocked and appalled at learning that Ukraine is a money laundering operation for the politically connected. (They provide many other 'perks' as well.)

I've warned about light in the loafers Lindsey as well as McConnell before and more than once. Sessions should also be denied a re-admission into the swamp. There are others.

[Dec 02, 2019] A bunch of neocons in key positions in Trump administration really represents a huge threat to world peace

Notable quotes:
"... No. My point was it's very misleading. Misleading to set the parameters of discussion on U.S. posture toward Russia in such a way as to assume that Putin's actions against a purported Russian "democracy" have anything at all to do with USian antagonism of Russia. I'm sure you'll note current U.S. military cooperation with that boisterous hotbed of democratic activity, Saudi Arabia, in Yemen. Our allies in the house of Saud require help in defending their democratic way of life against the totalitarianism of Yemeni tribes, you see. The U.S. opposes anti-democratic forces whenever and where ever it can, especially in the Middle East. I guess that explains USian antipathy to Russia. ..."
Oct 28, 2016 | crookedtimber.org
Howard Frank in this blog provides a good example of Vichy left thinking...

Howard Frant 10.26.16 at 6:19 am 73

Stephen @58

Howard Frant 10.26.16 at 6:19 am ( )

Stephen @58

Yes, it was late and I was tired, or I wouldn't have said something so foolish. Still, the point is that after centuries of constant war, Europe went 70 years without territorial conquest. That strikes me as a significant achievement, and one whose breach should not be taken lightly.

phenomenal cat @64

So democratic structures have to be robust and transparent before we care about them? I'd give a pretty high value to an independent press and contested elections. Those have been slowly crushed in Russia. The results for transparency have not been great. Personally, I don't believe that Ukraine is governed by fascists, or that Ukraine shot down that jetliner, but I'm sure a lot of Russians do.

Russian leaders have always complained about "encirclement," but we don't have to believe them. Do you really believe Russia's afraid of an attack from Estonia? Clearly what Putin wants is to restore as much of the old Soviet empire as possible. Do you think the independence of the Baltic states would be more secure or less secure if they weren't members of NATO? (Hint: compare to Ukraine, Georgia, Moldova.)

phenomenal cat 10.26.16 at 6:55 pm 84

"So democratic structures have to be robust and transparent before we care about them?"

No. My point was it's very misleading. Misleading to set the parameters of discussion on U.S. posture toward Russia in such a way as to assume that Putin's actions against a purported Russian "democracy" have anything at all to do with USian antagonism of Russia. I'm sure you'll note current U.S. military cooperation with that boisterous hotbed of democratic activity, Saudi Arabia, in Yemen. Our allies in the house of Saud require help in defending their democratic way of life against the totalitarianism of Yemeni tribes, you see. The U.S. opposes anti-democratic forces whenever and where ever it can, especially in the Middle East. I guess that explains USian antipathy to Russia.

"I'd give a pretty high value to an independent press and contested elections."

Yeah, it'd be interesting to see what the U.S. looked like with those dynamics in place.

"Those have been slowly crushed in Russia. The results for transparency have not been great."

If you say so. For now I'll leave any decisions or actions taken on these outcomes to Russian citizens. I would, however, kindly tell Victoria Nuland and her ilk to fuck off with their senile Cold War fantasies, morally bankrupt, third-rate Great Game machinations, and total spectrum dominance sociopathy.

"Personally, I don't believe that Ukraine is governed by fascists, or that Ukraine shot down that jetliner, but I'm sure a lot of Russians do."

There's definitely some of 'em hanging about, but yeah it mostly seems to be a motley assortment of oligarchs, gangsters, and grifters tied into international neoliberal capital and money flows. No doubt Russian believe a lot things. I find Americans tend to believe a lot things as well.

[Dec 02, 2019] The Vichy left – essentially people who are ready to sacrifice all principles to ensure their own prosperity

Notable quotes:
"... Pretty consistent, I agree. IMHO Sanjait might belong to the category that some people call the "Vichy left" – essentially people who are ready to sacrifice all principles to ensure their 'own' prosperity and support the candidate who intends to protect it, everybody else be damned. ..."
"... Very neoliberal approach if you ask me. Ann Rand would probably be proud for this representative of "creative class". ..."
"... Essentially the behavior that we've had for the last 8 years with the king of "bait and switch". ..."
Oct 24, 2016 | economistsview.typepad.com

Sanjait -> Sandwichman ... October 24, 2016 at 10:35 AM

Some paranoid claptrap to go along with your usual anti intellectualism.

Interestingly, with your completely unrelated non sequitur, you've actually illustrated something that does relate to Krugmans post. Namely that there are wingnuts among us. They've taken over the Republican Party, but the left has some too. Fortunately though the Democratic Party hasn't been taken over by them yet, and is still mostly run by grown ups.

Sandwichman -> Sanjait... , October 24, 2016 at 10:42 AM

I am confident that what you say here is consistent with your methods and motivations.
likbez -> Sandwichman ...
"I am confident that what you say here is consistent with your methods and motivations."

Pretty consistent, I agree. IMHO Sanjait might belong to the category that some people call the "Vichy left" – essentially people who are ready to sacrifice all principles to ensure their 'own' prosperity and support the candidate who intends to protect it, everybody else be damned.

Very neoliberal approach if you ask me. Ann Rand would probably be proud for this representative of "creative class".

Essentially the behavior that we've had for the last 8 years with the king of "bait and switch".

[Nov 28, 2019] Fiona Hill links to Soros by Julian Borger

Looks like both Yovanovich and Hill are connected to Soros and did his bidding instead of pursuing Trump policies as for Ukraine. Yovanovich was clearly dismiied due to her role in channeling damaging to Trump information during 2016 elections, the fact that she denies (as she denied the exostance of "do not procecute list"). And nothing can be taken serious from a government official until she denied it.
Notable quotes:
"... Fiona Hill, who was the senior director for Europe and Russia in the National Security Council (NSC) said other NSC staff had been "hounded out" by threats against them, including antisemitic smears linking them to the liberal financier and philanthropist, George Soros, a hate figure on the far right. ..."
"... This was a mishmash of conspiracy theories that I believe firmly to be baseless, an idea of an association between her and George Soros." ..."
"... "My entire first year of my tenure at the National Security Council was filled with hateful calls, conspiracy theories, which has started again, frankly, as it's been announced that I've been giving this deposition, accusing me of being a Soros mole in the White House, of colluding with all kinds of enemies of the president, and of various improprieties." ..."
"... "When I saw this happening to Ambassador Yovanovitch, I was furious," she said, pointing to "this whipping up of what is frankly an antisemitic conspiracy theory about George Soros to basically target nonpartisan career officials, and also some political appointees as well." ..."
"... Hill dismissed the suggestion that Ukraine meddled in the 2016 election was a "conspiracy theory" intended to distract attention from Russia's well-documented role. ..."
Nov 28, 2019 | 112.international

Trump's ex-Russia adviser received death threats after testifying in impeachment hearings, - The Guardian

Fiona Hill has been subjected to a campaign of harassment and intimidation 16:22, 9 November 2019 Open source

The former top Russia expert at the White House has said she has been subjected to a campaign of harassment and intimidation, including death threats, which reached a new peak after she agreed to testify in congressional impeachment hearings, The Guardian reports.

Fiona Hill, who was the senior director for Europe and Russia in the National Security Council (NSC) said other NSC staff had been "hounded out" by threats against them, including antisemitic smears linking them to the liberal financier and philanthropist, George Soros, a hate figure on the far right.

In her testimony to Congress, Hill described a climate of fear among administration staff.

The UK-born academic and biographer of Vladimir Putin said that the former ambassador to Ukraine, Marie Yovanovitch, was the target of a hate campaign, with the aim of driving her from her post in Kyiv, where she was seen as an obstacle to some corrupt business interests.

Yovanovitch was recalled from Ukraine in May on Trump's orders. In a 25 July conversation with the Ukrainian president, Volodymyr Zelenskiy, Trump described Yovanovitch as "bad news" and predicted she was "going to go through some things". The former ambassador has testified she felt threatened by the remarks.

Trump's lawyer, Rudy Giuliani, led calls for Yovanovitch's dismissal, as did two of Giuliani business associates, Lev Parnas and Igor Fruman. All three are under scrutiny in hearings being held by House committees looking at Trump's use of his office to put pressure on the Ukrainian government to investigate his political opponents.

"There was no basis for her removal," Hill testified. "The accusations against her had no merit whatsoever. This was a mishmash of conspiracy theories that I believe firmly to be baseless, an idea of an association between her and George Soros."

"I had had accusations similar to this being made against me as well," Hill testified. "My entire first year of my tenure at the National Security Council was filled with hateful calls, conspiracy theories, which has started again, frankly, as it's been announced that I've been giving this deposition, accusing me of being a Soros mole in the White House, of colluding with all kinds of enemies of the president, and of various improprieties."

She added that the former national security adviser, HR McMaster "and many other members of staff were targeted as well, and many people were hounded out of the National Security Council because they became frightened about their own security."

"I received, I just have to tell you, death threats, calls at my home. My neighbours reported somebody coming and hammering on my door," Hill said, adding that she had also been targeted by obscene phone calls. "Now, I'm not easily intimidated, but that made me mad."

"When I saw this happening to Ambassador Yovanovitch, I was furious," she said, pointing to "this whipping up of what is frankly an antisemitic conspiracy theory about George Soros to basically target nonpartisan career officials, and also some political appointees as well."

In Yovanovitch's case, Hill said: "the most obvious explanation [for the smear campaign] seemed to be business dealings of individuals who wanted to improve their investment positions inside of Ukraine itself, and also to deflect away from the findings of not just the Mueller report on Russian interference but what's also been confirmed by your own Senate report, and what I know myself to be true as a former intelligence analyst and somebody who has been working on Russia for more than 30 years."

Hill dismissed the suggestion that Ukraine meddled in the 2016 election was a "conspiracy theory" intended to distract attention from Russia's well-documented role.

... ... ...

[Nov 23, 2019] Fiona Hill a rabid neocon promoting UK foreign policy within the USA government, a book writer of Luke Harding mold, was appointed by Trump in 2017 when Russiagate was in full broom

This is another remnant for Bush neocon team, a protégé of Bolton. Trump probably voluntarily appointed this rabid neocon, a chickenhawk who would shine in Hillary State Department. Interestingly she came from working class background. So much about Marx theory of class struggle. Brown, David (March 4, 2017). "Miner's daughter tipped as Trump adviser on Russia" . The Times. She also illustrate level pf corruption of academic science, because she got PhD in history from Harvard in 1998 under Richard Pipes, Akira Iriye, and Roman Szporluk. But at least this was history, not languages like in case of Ciaramella.
Such appointment by Trump is difficult to describe with normal words as he understood what he is buying. So he is himself to blame for his current troubles and his inability to behave in a diplomatic way when there was important to him question about role of CrowdStrike in 2016 election and creation of Russiagate witch hunt.
There is something in the USA that creates conditions for producing rabid female neocons, some elevator that brings ruthless female careerists with sharp elbows them to the establishment. She sounds like a person to the right of Madeline Albright, which is an achievement
With such books It is unclear whether she is different from Max Boot. She buys official Skripal story like hook and sinker. The list of her book looks like produced in UK by Luke Harding
Being miner daughter raised in poverty we can also talk about betrayal of her class and upbringing.
This also rises wisdom of appointing emigrants to the Administration and the extent they pursue policies beneficial for their native countries.
Nov 23, 2019 | en.wikipedia.org

Impeachment testimony

On October 14, 2019, responding to a subpoena , Hill testified in a closed-door deposition for ten hours before special committees of the United States Congress as part of the impeachment inquiry against President Donald Trump . [9] [10] [11]

Testimony to the House Intelligence Committee by Hill and David Holmes, November 21, 2019 , C-SPAN

She testified in public before the same body on November 21, 2019. [12] While being questioned by Steve Castor , the counsel for the House Intelligence Committee's Republican minority, Hill commented on Gordon Sondland 's involvement in the Ukraine matter: "It struck me when (Wednesday), when you put up on the screen Ambassador Sondland's emails, and who was on these emails, and he said these are the people who need to know, that he was absolutely right," she said. "Because he was being involved in a domestic political errand, and we were being involved in national security foreign policy. And those two things had just diverged." [13] In response to a question from that committee's chairman, Rep. Adam Schiff , Hill stated: "The Russians' interests are frankly to delegitimize our entire presidency. The goal of the Russians [in 2016] was really to put whoever became the president -- by trying to tip their hands on one side of the scale -- under a cloud." [

Hill's books include:

[Nov 23, 2019] Testimony to the House Intelligence Committee by Hill and David Holmes

The most interesting part of testimony is that CrowdStrike machinations in case of DNC leak which was artificially turns into Russian hack (and probably not without Crowdstyle server located in Ukraine). As this is connected to Steel which is a hot spot for the UK government was swiped under the carpet.
She actually met with Steele. She was shown Steele dossier before it was published.
Nov 21, 2019 | www.c-span.org

CrowdStrike was mentioned only is passing and was instantly dismissed by rabid neocon Hill. While this was the central issue with Zelensky administration.

All questioning was about semi-senile Biden, who is probably the most favorable contender on Democratic side for Trump.

[Nov 22, 2019] Another Glass Menagerie

Notable quotes:
"... She looked to be a most convincing and dignified victim but it was difficult to work out quite what she'd been a victim of. ..."
"... I think our closest equivalent over here would be Lady Ashton, who headed up the pre-coup European negotiations with the Ukraine. It was Lady Ashton who gave the most famous diplomatic response in modern history, when she was told that the snipers might be provocateurs. "Gosh." ..."
"... And Chairman Schiff looked as scary as usual. If I could open my eyes that wide I'd make a fortune in horror movies. Which I suppose is more or less what he does. ..."
"... Colonel, your description of Ambassador Yovanovitch as "a secular nun" is spot on. Congratulations ! On the other hand, why is a nun continuing a civil war with 1% predatory oligarchs and Bandera thugs on our side, versus 99% of un-armed local nobodies who want a return to normalcy? ..."
"... Lastly, note that Representative Stefanik caught Ambassador Marie in a lie about Hunter Biden and Burisma. Marie claimed under oath that she had never encountered the issue pre-arrival in the Ukraine, while she had admitted earlier that Obama staff coached her about Hunter / Burisma responses for her Senate Confirmation Hearings. ..."
Nov 22, 2019 | turcopolier.typepad.com

... She seems to live alone, alone with her work. She tried living with her 88 year old mother three years ago but that did not last. What would the old girl have done with herself in Kiev with her daughter working all the time?

So, the maman went home to the States. Marie is still employed as a Career Ambassador (a high rank) in the Foreign Service of of the United States She is currently assigned at Georgetown U.

... ... ...


English Outsider , 16 November 2019 at 03:35 PM


That's the first time I've seen "winsome" used with an edge.

I watched her for some time and didn't know what on earth to make of her. She looked to be a most convincing and dignified victim but it was difficult to work out quite what she'd been a victim of.

I think our closest equivalent over here would be Lady Ashton, who headed up the pre-coup European negotiations with the Ukraine. It was Lady Ashton who gave the most famous diplomatic response in modern history, when she was told that the snipers might be provocateurs. "Gosh."

A very safe pair of hands, is what would be said of both and almost certainly often is.

I did know what to make of the histrionics just before the recess. They looked false. That man wasn't really crying. And Chairman Schiff looked as scary as usual. If I could open my eyes that wide I'd make a fortune in horror movies. Which I suppose is more or less what he does.

Eric Newhill said in reply to English Outsider ... , 17 November 2019 at 10:14 AM
EO,
Zelensky did not like her and suggested that she was involved with corrupt people and undermining the President. I don't understand how Trump gets all of the blame for her being relieved of her position.
turcopolier , 16 November 2019 at 03:49 PM
English Outsider

Marie IMO was always the second best looking girl in the class but maybe teacher's pet, and has never had anyone take anything away from her before. "Gosh." She doesn't look like someone you could safely make a pass at unless you had an awful lot of rank.

Petrel said in reply to turcopolier ... , 17 November 2019 at 07:22 AM
Colonel, your description of Ambassador Yovanovitch as "a secular nun" is spot on. Congratulations ! On the other hand, why is a nun continuing a civil war with 1% predatory oligarchs and Bandera thugs on our side, versus 99% of un-armed local nobodies who want a return to normalcy?

Then again, since when does a Presidential emissary not only criticize him and the President of her host country, but also instruct local law enforcement on which oligarchs he may investigate and which oligarch's (admittedly ours) he may not.

Lastly, note that Representative Stefanik caught Ambassador Marie in a lie about Hunter Biden and Burisma. Marie claimed under oath that she had never encountered the issue pre-arrival in the Ukraine, while she had admitted earlier that Obama staff coached her about Hunter / Burisma responses for her Senate Confirmation Hearings.

To take your cue, Ambassador Marie is a secular nun with very bad ideas, who wandered to a profession she is not at all suited.

Factotum said in reply to Petrel... , 17 November 2019 at 03:16 PM
She has some bad habits, for a secular nun.

[Nov 22, 2019] Marie Yovanovitch, the Poster Child of #FSProud

Nov 22, 2019 | www.theamericanconservative.com

The State Department, where I worked for 24 years as a Foreign Service officer (FSO) and diplomat, reminds me a lot of my current hometown, New York City. Both places spend an inordinate amount of time telling outsiders how great they are while ignoring the obvious garbage piled up around them. It's almost as if they're trying to convince themselves that everything is okay.

Like New York City telling itself the Broadway lights mean folks won't notice the homeless problem and decaying infrastructure, the State Department fully misunderstands how it appears to others. Across Facebook groups and internal channels, FSOs this week are sending each other little messages tagged #FSProud quoting former ambassador Marie Yovanovitch's closing soliloquy from her impeachment testimony.

Yovanovitch's testimony otherwise read like an HR complaint from hell, as if she were auditioning for a Disgruntled Employee poster-child position to cap off her career. She had already been fired by the time the alleged impeachable act took place -- Trump's July 25 phone call -- and was stuck in a placeholder job far removed from Ukrainian policy. She witnessed nothing of the "high crimes and misdemeanors" the House is investigating, and basically used her time to complain she knew more than her boss did so he fired her.

At the end of her testimony , Yovanovitch unfurled a large metaphorical flag and wrapped herself and the entire Foreign Service in it. Her lines had nothing to do with Ukraine: they were recruiting boilerplate about how FSOs are nonpartisan servants of the Constitution, how they all live in harm's way, yada yada. She name-checked diplomats from four decades ago held hostage in Iran, and rolled in a couple of CIA contractors when tallying up the "State" death toll from Benghazi. She omitted the we-don't-talk-about-that-one death of FSO Anne Smedinghoff in Afghanistan, whose 25-year-old life was destroyed participating in a propaganda photo-op.

This is the false idol image the State Department holds dear of itself, and people inside the organization today proudly christened Ambassador Yovanovitch its queen. Vanity Fair summed it up better than the long-winded FSOs bleating across social media: "A hero is born as Yovanovitch gives voice to widespread rage at State. 'I think people are feeling huge pride in Masha,' says a former ambassador." Yovanovitch uses her Russian nickname, Masha, without media comment, because of course she does.

And that's the good part. Alongside Yovanovitch, bureaucrat-in-a-bow-tie George Kent issued pronouncements against Trump people he never met who ignored his tweedy advice. Ambassador Bill Taylor leaked hoarded personal text messages with Trump political appointees. Taylor's deputy, David Holmes, appeared deus ex machina (Holmes had a photo of Yovanovitch as his Facebook page cover photo until recently!) to claim that back in the summer, he somehow overheard both sides of a phone conversation between Trump and political appointee, EU ambassador Gordon Sondland. Holmes eavesdropped on a presidential call and dumped it in the Democrats' laps, and now he's nonpartisan #FSProud, too.

Interesting that the major political events of the last few years have all crisscrossed the State Department: Clinton emails and Foundation shenanigans, the Steele Dossier and all things Russiagate, and now impeachment and Ukraine. And never mind that two major Democratic presidential candidates-in-waiting, Clinton and Kerry, had a home there. That's an awful lot of partisanship for an organization bragging about being nonpartisan.

Gawd, I need to wash my hands. I am #FSProud that in my 24 years as a diplomat, I never perjured myself, or claimed to or actually did eavesdrop on someone else's phone call, then spoon-fed the info months later to my boss on TV to take down a president mid-campaign, all while accepting cheers that I was nonpartisan and thinking my role as a snitch/bootlicker was going to help people view my organization as honorable.

FSOs see themselves as superheroes who will take down the Bad Orange Man. The organization flirted with the role before: " dissent " by State strayed close to insubordination opposing Trump's so-called Muslim Ban. Everyone remembers the Department's slow-walking the release of Hillary Clinton's emails (after helping hide the existence of her private server). The Department turned a blind eye to Clinton's nepotism in hiring her campaign aides (remember Huma ?) and use of America's oldest cabinet position to create B-roll ahead of her soiled campaign.

Maybe the State Department's overt support for Candidate Clinton did not make clear enough what happens when the organization betrays itself to politics.

While FSOs are gleefully allowing themselves to be used today, they fail to remember that nobody likes a snitch. No matter which side you're on, in the end nobody will trust you, Democrat or Republican, after seeing what you really are. What White House staffer of any party will interact openly with his diplomats knowing they are saving his texts and listening in on his calls, waiting? State considers itself a pit bull when in fact it's betrayed its golden nonpartisan glow. Hey, in your high school, did anyone want to have the kids who lived to be hall monitors and teacher's pets as their lunch buddies?

The real problems go much deeper. A Government Accountability Office (GAO) report showed more than one fourth of all Foreign Service positions were either unfilled or filled with below-grade employees. At the senior levels, 36 percent of positions were vacant or filled with people of lower rank and experience pressed into service. At the crucial mid-ranks, the number was 26 percent unfilled.

The thing is, that GAO report is from 2012 , and it showed similar results to one written in 2008. The State Department has danced with irrelevancy for a long time, and its efforts to be The Resistance as a cure today feel more like desperation than heroism. State's somnolent response, even during the mighty Clinton and Kerry years, to what should have been a crisis call (speculate on what the response might be to a report saying the military was understaffed by 36 percent) tells the tale.

As the world changes, State still has roughly the same number of Portuguese speakers as it does Russian among its FSOs. No other Western country uses private citizens as ambassadors over career diplomats to anywhere near the extent the United States does, where about a third of the posts are doled out as political patronage mainly because what they do doesn't matter. The secretary of state hands out lapel buttons reading " Swagger "; imagine a new secretary of defense doing the same -- and then being laughed out of office.

FSOs wade in the shallowest waters of the Deep State. Since the 1950s, the heavy lifting of foreign policy -- the stuff that ends up in history books -- mostly moved into the White House and the National Security Council. The increasing role of the military in America's foreign relations further sidelined State. The regional sweep of the AFRICOM and CENTCOM generals, for example, paints State's landlocked ambassadors as weak.

State's sad little attempt to stake out a new role in nation-building failed in Iraq , failed in Afghanistan , and failed in Haiti . The organization's Clinton-Kerry era joblet promoting democracy through social media was a flop. Trade policy has its own bureaucracy outside Foggy Bottom.

What was left for State was reporting, its on-the-ground viewpoint that informs policymakers. Even there the intelligence community has eaten State's sandwiches with the crusts cut off lunch -- why listen to what some FSO thinks the prime minister will do when the NSA can provide the White House with real-time audio of him explaining it in bed to his mistress? The überrevelation from the 2010 Wikileaks documents dump was that most of State's vaunted reporting is of little value. State struggled through the Chelsea Manning trial to convince someone that actual harm was done to national security by the disclosures.

For the understaffed Department of State, that leaves pretty much only the role of concierge abroad, the one Ambassadors Taylor and Yovanovitch, and their lickspittles Kent and Holmes, complained about as their real point during the impeachment hearings. Read their testimony and you learn they had no contact with principals Trump, Giuliani, and Pompeo (which is why they were useless "witnesses," they didn't see anything firsthand) and griped about being cut out of the loop and left off conference calls. They testified instead based on overheard conversations and off-screen voices. Taylor whined that Pompeo ignored his reports.

Meanwhile, America's VIPs need their hands held abroad, their motorcades organized, and their receptions handled, all tasks that fall squarely on the Department of State. That is what was really being said underneath it all at the impeachment hearings. It is old news, but it found a greedy audience repurposed to take a whack at Trump. State thinks this is its moment to shine, but all that is happening is a light is being shined on the organization's partisanship and pettiness in reaction to its own irrelevance.

Peter Van Buren, a 24-year State Department veteran, is the author of We Meant Well: How I Helped Lose the Battle for the Hearts and Minds of the Iraqi People , Hooper's War: A Novel of WWII Japan, and Ghosts of Tom Joad: A Story of the #99 Percent .

[Nov 22, 2019] Listening to our "world's best diplomats" convinced me that the deep state is real

The State (War) Department is really the neocons viper nest
Notable quotes:
"... Listening to our "world's best diplomats" convinced me that the deep state is real. These people think they, not elected officials, make policy. Plus, they are sneaky and conniving in trying to establish and protect their own little fiefdoms. They have never seen a foreign aid budget that in their humble yet expert opinion shouldn't be increased tenfold. They are political but pretend otherwise. And, their sanctimony is unbearable. Let's just say that I don't think that Foggy Bottom made a good impression with the general public this week. ..."
"... Oh, please. Every time it looks like we might actually pull out of Iraq, Afghanistan or Syria, the generals pop up on the TV talk shows and in the Op-Ed pages warning of the dire consequences and pleading for more time. The neo-cons used to pull this "OMG, the military is the most competent part of the federal government" stuff back in the build-up to the invasion of Iraq, and TAC is not the only publication that has blown up that myth. ..."
Nov 22, 2019 | www.theamericanconservative.com

chris_zzz 19 hours ago

Listening to our "world's best diplomats" convinced me that the deep state is real. These people think they, not elected officials, make policy. Plus, they are sneaky and conniving in trying to establish and protect their own little fiefdoms. They have never seen a foreign aid budget that in their humble yet expert opinion shouldn't be increased tenfold. They are political but pretend otherwise. And, their sanctimony is unbearable. Let's just say that I don't think that Foggy Bottom made a good impression with the general public this week.