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Neoliberal war on reality

"We'll know our disinformation program is complete when everything the American public believes is false" ~ CIA Director William Casey (attributed)

"Empire of illusions": The  triumph of entertainment and fake  news under neoliberalism

News Elite [Dominance] Theory And the Revolt of the Elite Recommended Links Media as a weapon of mass deception Lewis Powell Memo Deception as an art form
Groupthink Disciplined Minds Belief-coercion in high demand cults Fake News scare and US NeoMcCartyism Conspiracy theory label as a subtle form of censorship Discrediting the opponent as favorite tactic of neoliberals
Neoliberal newspeak US and British media are servants of security apparatus British elite hypocrisy Anti-Russian hysteria in connection emailgate and DNC leak Anti Trump Hysteria Pathological Russophobia of the US elite
Corruption of the language Doublespeak Patterns of Propaganda Diplomacy by deception War propaganda Empire of Illusion: The End of Literacy and the Triumph of Spectacle
Inside "democracy promotion" hypocrisy fair Patterns of Propaganda Bullshit as MSM communication method Manipulation of the term "freedom of press" Identity politics as divide and conquer The Guardian Slips Beyond the Reach of Embarrassment
Color revolutions Co-opting of the Human Rights to embarrass governments who oppose neoliberalism Democracy as a universal opener for access to natural resources What's the Matter with Kansas Understanding Mayberry Machiavellians  
Neo-fascism Nation under attack meme Nineteen Eighty-Four Manufactured consent Groupthink Big Uncle is Watching You
Who Shot down Malaysian flight MH17? Ukraine: From EuroMaidan to EuroAnschluss Pussy Riot Provocation and "Deranged Pussy Worship Syndrome" MSM Sochi Bashing Rampage Is national security state in the USA gone rogue ? Totalitarian Decisionism & Human Rights: The Re-emergence of Nazi Law
Soft propaganda Classic Papers Media Ownership Propaganda Quotes Humor Etc

"The truth is that the newspaper is not a place for information to be given, rather it is just hollow content, or more than that, a provoker of content. If it prints lies about atrocities, real atrocities are the result."

Karl Kraus, 1914

WAR IS PEACE. FREEDOM IS SLAVERY. IGNORANCE IS STRENGTH

1984

We are the world, we are exceptional, we cannot fail. The elite will lie, and the people will pretend to believe them. Heck about 20 percent of the American public will believe almost anything if it is wrapped with the right prejudice and appeal to passion. Have a pleasant evening.

jessescrossroadscafe.blogspot.com, Feb 04, 2015


Introduction

In many respects, the media creates reality, so perhaps the most effective route toward changing reality runs through the media.  "Controlling the narrative" is the major form of neoliberal MSM war on reality. By providing "prepackaged" narrative for a particular world event and selectively suppressing alternative information channels that contraduct the official narrative, neoliberals control and channel emotions of people in the direction they want.  Often in the direction of yet another war for the expansion of the global neoliberal empire led from Washington, DC.

libezkova said in reply to Fred C. Dobbs...  January 29, 2017 at 08:31 AM  

Neoliberal MSM want to control the narrative. That's why "alternative facts" should be called an "alternative narrative". https://opinionator.blogs.nytimes.com/2014/06/09/controlling-the-narrative/?_r=0

== quote ==

Maybe this is the same kind of clinical detachment doctors have to cultivate, a way of distancing oneself from the subject, protecting yourself against a crippling empathy. I won’t say that writers or artists are more sensitive than other people, but it may be that they’re less able to handle their own emotions.

It may be that art, like drugs, is a way of dulling or controlling pain. Eloquently articulating a feeling is one way to avoid actually experiencing it.

Words are only symbols, noises or marks on paper, and turning the messy, ugly stuff of life into language renders it inert and manageable for the author, even as it intensifies it for the reader.

It’s a nerdy, sensitive kid’s way of turning suffering into something safely abstract, an object of contemplation.

I suspect most of the people who write all that furious invective on the Internet, professional polemicists and semiliterate commenters alike, are lashing out because they’ve been hurt — their sense of fairness or decency has been outraged, or they feel personally wounded or threatened.

It is hard to disagree with the notion which was put by several authors that American society is living  in a cocoon of illusion which conveniently isolates them from reality: entertainment and escapism infuse our society, economy, and political system with severe consequences. Among such authors are  Aldous Huxley. C. Wright Mills, Sheldon Wolin, Ralph Nader, Karl Polanyi, Jared Diamond, Paul Craig Roberts, Chris Hedge and several others. If we compare dystopias of Huxley and Orwell, and it clear that Huxley in his famous  New Brave World predicted the future much better:

"Huxley feared was that would be no reason to ban a book, for there would be no one who wanted to read one... the truth would be drowned in a sea of irrelevance."

The central idea here is that we now live as a society in which citizens become so distracted (and by extension detached) from reality that they lost any ability to influence their political or economic destiny. It is the same phenomenon that is described under the label of Inverted Totalitarism

This is one of the truly malevolent aspects of today's modern neoliberal world order and we need to confront it. It allows the old game of blaming the weak and the marginal, a staple of neo-fascist and despotic regimes; this illusion empower the dark undercurrents of sadism and violence in American society and deflect attention from the neoliberal financial vampires who have drained the blood of the country

"The tragedy is that we have become a screen culture, televisions, computers, phones, tablets, etc. Our electronic hallucinations have produced a society that has little time or patience for introspection or deep thinking. It reinforced my decision to maintain a television free life. For some, what Chris has to say may cut to close to the bone. But those with the courage to do so are usually the ones that care the most."

The biggest and most invisible elephant in the American psyche is this: our government has long since abandoned the goal of managing this nation as a nation. Instead, America as a nation is managed as a means to global empire.

For example the loss of the critical skills of literacy (seven million total illiterates, another 27 million unable to read well enough to complete a job application, and still another 50 million who read at a 4th-5th-grade level)  have led large part of the US population to become incapable of thinking for ourselves.

In fact they have become as malleable as children. 80% of U.S. families did not buy or read a single book in a year.  Despite technology and internet access we are becoming a society of functionally ignorant and illiterate people.

For example there is widespread illusion of inclusion. This is the illusion that we are or will be included among the fortunate few because misfortune happens only to those who deserve it. There are plenty of people who understand that the corporate model is one in which there are squeezers and those who are to be squeezed. So the illusion of inclusion provides what can be called "a plantation morality" that exalts the insiders and denigrates the outsiders. Those content with this arrangement obviously view themselves as insiders even when they work for companies that are actively shedding employees. Many of these people are happy to be making good money for digging graves for others, never stopping to wonder if maybe someday one of those graves might be their own.

One of the first recorded metaphors which explained this phenomenon of substitution of reality with  illusion was Plato's tale about cave dwellers, who thought the shadows on the wall were the actual reality. Illusion can also serve as a deliberate distraction, isolation layer that protects form unpleasant reality. The point is that now it is illusions that dominate American life; both for those that succumb to them, and for those that promote and sustains them. It is the use of illusions in the US  society that become  prevalent today, converting like into the cinema or theater, where primary goal is entertainment.

Modern MSM are driven by postmodernism which includes among other things substitution of reality with artificial reality, fragmentation of history and push for historical amnesia, decentering of subject and juxtaposition of opposites. But the key feature is controlling the narrative.

Controlling the narrative means control and deliberate selection of the issues which can be discussed

The Journalist Udo Ulfkotte ashamed today that he spent 17 years in the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung. ...he reveals why opinion leaders produce tendentious reports and serve as the extended Arm of the NATO press office. ...the author also was admitted into the networks of American elite organizations, received in return for positive coverage in the US even a certificate of honorary citizenship.

In this book you will learn about industry lobby organisations. The author calls hundreds of names and looks behind the Scenes of those organizations, which exert bias into media, such as: Atlantic bridge, Trilateral Commission, the German Marshall Fund, American Council on Germany, American Academy, Aspen Institute, and the Institute for European politics. Also revealed are the intelligence backgrounds of those lobby groups, the methods and forms of propaganda and financing used, for example, by the US Embassy. Which funds  projects for the targeted influencing of public opinion in Germany 

...You realize how you are being manipulated - and you know from whom and why. At the end it becomes clear that diversity of opinion will now only be simulated. Because our "messages" are often pure brainwashing.

Gekaufte Journalisten - Medienwelt Enthüllungen Bücher - Kopp Verlag

Controlling the narrative means control and deliberate selection of the issues which can be discussed (and by extension which are not)  in MSM. It represents real war on reality.  Non-stop, 24 by 7 character of modern media help with this greatly (The Unending Anxiety of an ICYMI World - NYTimes.com):

We used to receive media cyclically. Newspapers were published once (or sometimes twice) a day, magazines weekly or monthly. Nightly news was broadcast, well, each night. Television programs were broadcast on one of the major networks one night a week at a specific time, never to return until a rerun or syndication. Movies were shown first in theaters and on video much later (or, before the advent of VCRs, not until a revival). There were not many interstices, just discrete units — and a smaller number of them.

Now we’re in the midst of the streaming era, when the news industry distributes material on a 24-hour cycle, entire seasons of TV shows are dumped on viewers instantaneously, most movies are available at any time and the flow of the Internet and social media is ceaseless. We are nearly all interstitial space, with comparatively few singularities.

Media became out windows to the world and this window is broken. The notion of 'controlling the narrative' points to dirty games played by PR gurus and spin merchants with event coverage (especially foreign event coverage) to ensure the rule of elite.  A good part of the White House budget and resources is spent on controlling the narrative. Creation of the narrative and "talking points" for MSM is the task of State Department. With State Department spokesperson Jen Psaki, as a pretty telling "incarnation"  of the trend. 

And MSM are doing an exemplary job controlling the political narrative. This way they demonstrate their faithful service to the state and the ruling political class. Nowhere is more evident then in coverage of wars.

Only social media can smash the official version of events. And in some case that has happened. The USA MSM honchos are now scratching heads trying to understand  how to control their version of events despite Twitter, Facebook and other social networks.

On Ukraine, despite the most coordinated propaganda offensive of Western MSMs, the Western elite failed to fully control the narrative:  a sizable number of Europeans are still clinging to the notion that this story had two sides. You can see this trend from analysis of Guardian comments (The Guardian Presstitutes Slip Beyond the Reach of Embarrassment ). More importantly the EU political establishment has failed to maintain a central lie inside official narrative -- that the EU is benign and a force for good / peace / prosperity. EU elite has shown its ugly face supporting Ukrainian far right.

Another example were initially MSM totally controlled the narrative (the first two-three weeks) and then when the narrative start slipping away they need to silence the subject  Shooting down Malaysian flight MH17

The thing is, once you've lost control of the narrative, as happened with coverage MH17 tragedy, there's no way back. Once Western MSM lost it, no-one any longer believed  a word they said about the tragedy.

And little can be done to win back that credibility on the particular subject. Moreover, due to this Europeans are becoming more and more receptive of a drip of alternative media stories that completely destroy official EU narrative. They came from a multitude of little sources, including this site and they collectively  cements the loss of trust to the EU elite. 

More subtle nuances of controlling the narrative: the role of the scapegoat

 There also more subtle nuances of controlling the narrative. Actually controlling the narrative does not mean that you need to suppress all the negative news (like propagandists in the USSR often did -- leading to complete discreditation of official propaganda in minds of the USSR people -- it simply became the subject of jokes). As John V. Walsh noted:

There is a simple rule that is followed scrupulously by U.S. commentators of every stripe on world affairs and war – with a very few notable exceptions, Paul Craig Roberts and Pepe Escobar among them.

This rule allows strong criticism of the U.S. But major official adversaries of the U.S., Iran, Russia and China, must never, ever be presented as better than the US in any significant way. The US may be depicted as equally bad (or better) than these enemies, but never worse.

In other words, any strong criticism of the US presuppose scapegoating and vicious propaganda campaign against  major official adversaries of the US such as Russia. It  must never, ever be presented in a better light then the US in any significant way. In selected cases, the US may be depicted as equally bad, but never worse.

The most recent incarnation of this rule was during Hillary Clinton campaign for POTUS in 2016.

Chris Hedge book Empire of Illusion

 
The informational function of the media would be this to help us forget, to serve as the very agents and mechanism for our historical amnesia.

But in that cast of two features of postmodernism on which I have dwelt here -- the transformation of reality into images, the fragmentation of 'me' into a series of perpetual presents -- are bother extraordinary consolant with this process.

... We have seen that there is a way in which postmodernism replicates or reproduces -- reinforces -- the logic of consumer capitalism.

Frederic Jameson “Postmodernism and Consumer Society

 

Chis Hedge Empire of Illusion  is a penetrating analysis of this effort of "entertainment society" and converting everything including politics into entertainment. It was published in 2010. Hedges discuss  complex issues and a clear, succinct way. You might agree with him, you might disagree with him but you will enjoy his brilliant prose. 

Those who manipulate  from the shadows our lives are the agents, publicists, marketing departments, promoters, script writers, television and movie producers, advertisers, video technicians, photographers, bodyguards, wardrobe consultants, fitness trainers, pollsters, public announcers, and television news personalities who create the vast stage for the Empire of Illusion. They are the puppet masters. No one achieves celebrity status, without the approval of cultural enablers and intermediaries. The sole object is to hold attention and satisfy an audience. These techniques of theater leeched into politics, religion, education, literature, news, commerce, warfare, and even crime. It converts that society into wrestling ring mesh with the ongoing dramas on television, in movies, and in the news, where "real-life" stories, especially those involving celebrities, allow news reports to become mini-dramas complete with a star, a villain, a supporting cast, a good-looking host, and a neat, if often unexpected, conclusion (p. 15-16).

The first big achievement of Empire of Illusion was "glorification of war" after WWIII. As the veterans of WW II saw with great surprise their bitter, brutal wartime experience were skillfully transformed into an illusion, the mythic narrative of heroism and patriotic glory sold to the public by the Pentagon's public relations machine and Hollywood. The extreme brutality and meaninglessness of war could not compete against the power of the illusion, the fantasy of war as a ticket to glory, honor, and manhood. It was what the government and the military wanted to promote. It worked because it had the power to simulate experience for most viewers who were never at Iwo Jima or in a war. Few people understood that this illusion was a lie. p. 21-22.

Media evolved into branch of entertainment. He gives great insight on American society. Several chapters should be a required read for all sociology, film, journalism students, or government leaders. Much like Paul Craig Robert's How America Was Lost you might feel unplugged from the matrix after reading this book. This is the book that corporate America, as well as the neoliberal elite, do not want you to read. It's a scathing indictment against everything that's wrong with the system and those that continue to perpetuate the lie in the name of the almighty dollar. In a way the USA as the rest of the world are amusing itself into a post apocalyptic state, without an apocalypse. It is simply cannibalizing itself.

That books also contains succinct, and damning condemnation of globalization (and, specifically, the USA's role in it). You can compare it with Klein's 'Shock Doctrine', but it cuts a wider swath. 

The discussion the follows was by-and-large adapted from  D. Benor  Amazon review of the book

We consume countless lies daily, false promises that if we buy this brand or that product, if we vote for this candidate, we will be respected, envied, powerful, loved, and protected. The flamboyant lives of celebrities and the outrageous characters on television, movies,  and sensational talk shows are peddled to us, promising to fill up the emptiness in our own lives. Celebrity culture encourages everyone to think of themselves as potential celebrities, as possession unique if unacknowledged gifts. p. 26-7. Celebrity is the vehicle used by a corporate society to sell us these branded commodities, most of which we do not need. Celebrities humanize commercial commodities. They present the familiar and comforting face of the corporate state. p. 37.

Reporters, especially those on television, no longer ask whether the message is true but rather whether the pseudo-event worked or did not work as political theater for supporting particular (usually State Department in case of foreign events) talking points.  Pseudo-events are judged on how effectively we have been manipulated by illusion. Those events that appear real are relished and lauded. Those that fail to create a believable illusion are deemed failures. Truth is irrelevant. Those who succeed in politics, as in most of the culture, are those who create the most convincing fantasies. This is the real danger of pseudo-events and why pseudo-events are far more pernicious than stereotypes. They do not explain reality, as stereotypes attempt to, but replace reality. Pseudo-events redefines reality by the parameters set by their creators. These creators, who make massive profits selling illusions, have a vested interest in maintaining the power structures they control. p. 50-1.

A couple quotes: "When a nation becomes unmoored from reality, it retreats into a world of magic. Facts are accepted or discarded according to the dictates of a preordained cosmology. The search for truth becomes irrelevant." (p. 50) "The specialized dialect and narrow education of doctors, academics, economists, social scientists, military officers, investment bankers, and government bureaucrats keeps each sector locked in its narrow role. The overarching structure of the corporate state and the idea of the common good are irrelevant to specialists. They exist to make the system work, not to examine it." (p. 98) I could go on and on citing terrific passages.

The flight into illusion sweeps away the core values of the open society. It corrodes the ability to think for oneself, to draw independent conclusions, to express dissent when judgment and common sense tell you something is wrong, to be self-critical, to challenge authority, to grasp historical facts, to advocate for change, and to acknowledge that there are other views, different ways, and structures of being that are morally and socially acceptable. A populace deprived of the ability to separate lies from truth, that has become hostage to the fictional semblance of reality put forth by pseudo-events, is no longer capable of sustaining a free society.

Those who slip into this illusion ignore the signs of impending disaster. The physical degradation of the planet, the cruelty of global capitalism, the looming oil crisis, the collapse of financial markets, and the danger of overpopulation rarely impinge to prick the illusions that warp our consciousness. The words, images, stories, and phrases used to describe the world in pseudo-events have no relation to what is happening around us. The advances of technology and science, rather than obliterating the world of myth, have enhanced its power to deceive. We live in imaginary, virtual worlds created by corporations that profit from our deception. Products and experiences - indeed, experience as a product - offered up for sale, sanctified by celebrities, are mirages. They promise us a new personality. They promise us success and fame. They promise to mend our brokenness. p. 52-3.

We have all seen the growth of a culture of lies and deception in politics, banking, commerce and education. Hodges points out how this has been facilitated by our abandoning the teaching of values and analysis in our schools.

The flight from the humanities has become a flight from conscience. It has created an elite class of experts who seldom look beyond their tasks and disciplines to put what they do in a wider, social context. And by absenting themselves from the moral and social questions raised by the humanities, they have opted to serve a corporate structure that has destroyed the culture around them.

Our elites - the ones in Congress, the ones on Wall Street, and the ones being produced at prestigious universities and business schools - do not have the capacity to fix our financial mess. Indeed, they will make it worse. They have no concept, thanks to the educations they have received, of how to replace a failed system with a new one. They are petty, timid, and uncreative bureaucrats superbly trained to carry our systems management. They see only piecemeal solutions that will satisfy the corporate structure. Their entire focus is numbers, profits, and personal advancement. They lack a moral and intellectual core. They are as able to deny gravely ill people medical coverage to increase company profits as they are to use taxpayer dollars to peddle costly weapons systems to blood-soaked dictatorships. The human consequences never figure into their balance sheets. The democratic system, they believe, is a secondary product of the free market - which they slavishly serve. p. 111.

I quote Hodges at some length because of his cogent, clear summaries of the problems leading us to self-destruction and to ways we might someday restructure society to be supportive and healing to the individual - rather than exploiting people and viewing them only as valuable as they can be manipulated into being gullible consumers.

This is one of the clearest and best focused discussions I have seen on the problems of modern society that are leading us to societal suicide

Hedges points out how a cycle sustains itself between elite educational institutions (Harvard, Yale, Princeton, etc.), the Government (think Congress in particular) and Corporations. Ivy league schools basically turn-out lackeys that do whatever is necessary to maintain their elite, self-absorbed status. The last chapter is entitled, "The Illusion of America," and this is where Hedges does a fantastic job of pulling together all the elements of this dysfunctional society. Other books touch the same themes, sometimes more forcefully but in this book most important elements of this picture put together.

Among the booksHedges cites:

Gekaufte Journalisten by Udo Ulfkotte

The book Gekaufte Journalisten by Udo Ulfkotte was a revelation. Of cause, we suspected many things he  described, but nwo we know detailed methods and mechanisms of suppressing alterative opinion in German society, methods that are probably more effective that anything propagandists in the DDR adn the USSR ever attempted.  One of the central concept here is the concept of "Noble Lie".

Guardian became neoliberal as soon as Tony Blaire became Prime minister. As any neoliberal publication is subscribes to the notion of "noble lie". The latter actually came from neocons playbook.   No they knowingly try to dumb down their reader substituting important topic with celebrity gossip and hate speech. Even political issue now are "served" to the public as dishes under heavy sauce of personalities involved, which is a perfect way to obscure the subject and distract the readers.

geronimo -> MurkyFogsFutureLogs 14 Mar 2015 12:31
Indeed...

Under the retiring editor, all politics seems to have been reduced to 'identity' politics. Forget about class, war, class war and so on... If it can't be reduced to Hillary's gender or Putin's, er... transcendental evil... then it's barely worth a comment above the line.

As I've said before, for the Guardian 'the personal is the political' - or rather, for the Guardian as for Hillary, the political reduces to the personal.

A marriage made, not so much in heaven, but somewhere in political-fashionista North London.

In reality most prominent journalists are on tight leash of "'deep state". As Udo Ulfkotte book attests this is a rule, not an exception. While this was known since Operation Mockingbird  was revealed, nothing changed. As revealed by Senator Frank Church investigations (Select Committee to Study Governmental Operations with Respect to Intelligence Activities) in 1975. In his Congress report published in 1976 the authors stated:

"The CIA currently maintains a network of several hundred foreign individuals around the world who provide intelligence for the CIA and at times attempt to influence opinion through the use of covert propaganda. These individuals provide the CIA with direct access to a large number of newspapers and periodicals, scores of press services and news agencies, radio and television stations, commercial book publishers, and other foreign media outlets."

According to the "Family Jewels" report, released by the National Security Archive on June 26, 2007, during the period from March 12, 1963, and June 15, 1963, the CIA installed telephone taps on two Washington-based news reporters. Church argued that misinforming the world cost American taxpayers an estimated $265 million a year.[20]

In February 1976, George H. W. Bush, the recently appointed Director of the CIA, announced a new policy:

"Effective immediately, the CIA will not enter into any paid or contract relationship with any full-time or part-time news correspondent accredited by any U.S. news service, newspaper, periodical, radio or television network or station." He added that the CIA would continue to "welcome" the voluntary, unpaid cooperation of journalists.[21]

But at this point only handlers and methods changed, not the policy. They are still all controlled by deep state. The most recent revelations of this fact were published by Udo Ulfkotte’s in his bestseller book  Bought Journalists. Here is one Amazon review of the book: 

Unicorns & Kittenson May 1, 2015

I've managed to read a bit of the German version ...
 
I've managed to read a bit of the German version and now I think I understand why this is still not available in English although it was supposed to be released in this and other languages seven months ago. I will be very surprised if this shocking and destabilizing book (which names names) is made available to Americans ... even though it's primarily about the abusive tactics of American intelligence agencies. Please keep asking why it isn't published - despite being a best-seller in Germany -- and how we can get it here on Kindle.

As one Amazon reviewer said "This book will change for ever the way you read and watch the mainstream media! " Here is some additional information from russia-insider:

... ... ...

Ironically, however, it’s likely that one of the biggest threats (especially in Europe) to Anglo-American media credibility about Ukraine and other issues is coming from a very old-fashioned medium – a book.

Udo Ulfkotte’s bestseller Bought Journalists has been a sensation in Germany since its publication last autumn. The journalist and former editor of one of Germany’s largest newspapers, Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, revealed that he was for years secretly on the payroll of the CIA and was spinning the news to favour U.S. interests. Moreover he alleges that some major media are nothing more than propaganda outlets for international think-tanks, intelligence agencies, and corporate high-finance.

“We’re talking about puppets on a string,” he says, “journalists who write or say whatever their masters tell them to say or write. If you see how the mainstream media is reporting about the Ukraine conflict and if you know what’s really going on, you get the picture. The masters in the background are pushing for war with Russia and western journalists are putting on their helmets.” [8]

In another interview, Ulfkotte said:

“The German and American media tries to bring war to the people in Europe, to bring war to Russia. This is a point of no return, and I am going to stand up and say…it is not right what I have done in the past, to manipulate people, to make propaganda against Russia, and it is not right what my colleagues do, and have done in the past, because they are bribed to betray the people not only in Germany, all over Europe.” [9]

... ... ...

Apparently, Pomeranzev has forgotten that important October 2004 article by Ron Suskind published in the New York Times Magazine during the second war in Iraq (which, like the first, was based on a widely disseminated lie). Suskind quoted one of George W. Bush’s aides (probably Karl Rove): “The aide said that guys like me [journalists, writers, historians] were ‘in what we call the reality-based community,’ which he defined as people who ‘believe that solutions emerge from your judicious study of discernible reality…That’s not the way the world really works anymore,’ he continued. ‘We’re an empire now, and when we act, we create our own reality. And while you’re studying that reality – judiciously, as you will – we’ll act again, creating other new realities which you can study too, and that’s how things will sort out. We’re history’s actors…and you, all of you, will be left to just study what we do’.” [12]

It’s a rather succinct description of Orwellian spin and secrecy in a media-saturated Empire, where discerning the truth becomes ever more difficult.

That is why people believe someone like Udo Ulfkotte, who is physically ill, says he has only a few years left to live, and told an interviewer,

 “I am very fearful of a new war in Europe, and I don’t like to have this situation again, because war is never coming from itself, there is always people who push for war, and this is not only politicians, it is journalists too… We have betrayed our readers, just to push for war…I don’t want this anymore, I’m fed up with this propaganda. We live in a banana republic and not in a democratic country where we have press freedom…” [13]

Recently, as Mike Whitney has pointed out in CounterPunch (March 10), Germany’s newsmagazine Der Spiegel dared to challenge the fabrications of NATO’s top commander in Europe, General Philip Breedlove, for spreading “dangerous propaganda” that is misleading the public about Russian “troop advances” and making “flat-out inaccurate statements” about Russian aggression.

Whitney asks, “Why this sudden willingness to share the truth? It’s because they no longer support Washington’s policy, that’s why. No one in Europe wants the US to arm and train the Ukrainian army. No wants them to deploy 600 paratroopers to Kiev and increase U.S. logistical support. No one wants further escalation, because no wants a war with Russia. It’s that simple.” [14] Whitney argued that “the real purpose of the Spiegel piece is to warn Washington that EU leaders will not support a policy of military confrontation with Moscow.”

So now we know the reason for the timing of the April 15 U.S. House Foreign Affairs Committee hearing, “Confronting Russia’s Weaponization of Information.” Literally while U.S. paratroopers were en route to Kiev, the hawks in Washington (and London) knew it was time to crank up the rhetoric. The three witnesses were most eager to oblige.


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NEWS CONTENTS

Old News ;-)

[May 16, 2018] Rex Tillerson Takes Shots at Donald Trump During Virginia Military Institute Commencement Speech

That's strange to here this from form State Department head who wobble the truth on daily basis ;-) But the quotes are really good, while the man definitly is not...
He put extremely high standard for a human life: "Absent a life of integrity, no human being can live a life that is complete and whole," he said. "Living a life of integrity, perhaps we have a chance."
Compare with cynical Oscar Wilde quote "
As for truth, when neocons get to power, filth starts to flower downhill. The lies became "business as usual" and starts to overpower truth. Much like in the USSR. So, in a way, the truth is the first victim of the neoliberalism. The neoliberal ruling class succumbs to and supports all perversions. These kind of dirt-bags democracy have no aversion
Notable quotes:
"... If our leaders seek to conceal the truth, or we as people become accepting of alternative realities that are no longer grounded in facts, then we as American citizens are on a pathway to relinquishing our freedom. ..."
"... "A responsibility of every American citizen to each other is to preserve and protect our freedom by recognizing what truth is and is not, what a fact is and is not and begin by holding ourselves accountable to truthfulness and demand our pursuit of America's future be fact-based -- not based on wishful thinking, not hoped-for outcomes made in shallow promises, but with a clear-eyed view of the facts as they are, and guided by the truth that will set us free to seek solutions to our most daunting challenges." ..."
May 16, 2018 | www.theroot.com

Tillerson was the country's top diplomat until March, when he was fired by Donald Trump and replaced by CIA Director Mike Pompeo. NBC News reports that Tillerson called on the graduates to maintain a "fierce defense of the truth."

"As I reflect upon the state of our American democracy, I observe a growing crisis in ethics and integrity," Tillerson said in his speech. " If our leaders seek to conceal the truth, or we as people become accepting of alternative realities that are no longer grounded in facts, then we as American citizens are on a pathway to relinquishing our freedom. "

He added, "When we as people, a free people, go wobbly on the truth, even on what may seem the most trivial of matters, we go wobbly on America."

"A responsibility of every American citizen to each other is to preserve and protect our freedom by recognizing what truth is and is not, what a fact is and is not and begin by holding ourselves accountable to truthfulness and demand our pursuit of America's future be fact-based -- not based on wishful thinking, not hoped-for outcomes made in shallow promises, but with a clear-eyed view of the facts as they are, and guided by the truth that will set us free to seek solutions to our most daunting challenges."

[May 15, 2018] Why isn't putin helping syria defend herself from israeli attacks some answers from the commentariat at MoA by wendy davis

caucus99percent.com

This diary may be on the absurd side, but I know that this issue's bothered any number of us (including many tankies on Twitter), but this comment thread posits some opinions and offers many links to buttress arguments. Of course there were disagreements I haven't included, but not wanting to risk a wider war with Israel at this point, with so many dangers on Russia's borders makes sense to me. Can't say I've checked out more than a couple links

It really was disgusting it was to see Bibi with Putin at the V-day celebration in Moscow while the IDF was striking 'Iranian' (not so much) installations in Syria. Some say having Bibi there was by way of an object lesson: 'See what we've got?' I'm agnostic on that point, but I've grabbed these comments for your consideration and have just pasted them in raw with no quotations marks. Happy digging; dunno what a comment might on this PSA might include, but let's just see how it goes. They're out of time order, as I'd forgotten to Save the ones I'd grabbed early on, and have had to go back to copy more.

From Moon of Alabama's ' open thread' (2 pages of comments) on May 11:

..

Also not a good sign that President Putin re-nominated Medvedev (not the URL) as Prime Minister. The Saker lays out the rationale for this view.

Posted by: Trisha Driscoll | May 11, 2018

With regard to Medvedev. Let's just end this now.

Vesti news has a 10-minute clip showing the Duma in session to approve or disapprove Medvedev as Prime Minister. It's a great glimpse into the parliamentary side of things that we rarely see. Putin states that the social reforms he has called for and intends to carry out have been planned and examined with a fine tooth comb for a year and a half – by a team led by Medvedev. It makes sense to him, he says, that this same team would now carry these plans forward.

Can we not get beyond our own particular preferences of policy flavor and understand that Medvedev long ago ago gave up the Atlanticist affiliation – when, indeed, that option politically receded from his country's shores – and is simply a team player now, subservient to Russia and to Putin? And what he thinks in his own mind is nobody's business but his? He has no power outside of being a Prime Minister who effectuates Putin's vision.

And personally, I suspect he takes some satisfaction from doing this well. I don't care what transforms or redeems a man. I just care what fits the need of the moment. The hour produces the man, be he ever so tainted from former allegiances.

Medvedev's Tumultuous Confirmation Hearings (and of course, Zhirinovsky Calls for Reinstatement of Russian Monarchy)

pa..Vesti is cranking out so much Russian news and news shows now, in short clips with English subtitles – often half a dozen per day – that I've added it to my daily news scan. I reccomend the YouTube channel: Vesti News

Posted by: Grieved | May 11, 2018 8:50:47 PM | 71

Putin has done more to stop, blunt or block US military aggression than any other country.

He picked Syria to put Russian military up against US military. If he had not not done so, the Syrians that are still dying due to the terrorists and their sponsors would, along with hundreds of thousands of others have been dead in the jihadist takeover in 2015.

the Palestinians? What is the rest of the world doing about this? How many other countries deal with Israel. What is you country doing for the Palestinians.

There have been many proposed resolutions against Syria in the UN but US has vetoed them all. Israel can be brought into line only when US power is destroyed.

Many of the worlds conflicts that exist today can never be resolved until US power is destroyed as it is the US that keeps those conflicts as open wounds.

For Russia putting all their efforts into say Palestine or Yemen and the many other conflicts is like running around putting out spot fires rather than catching the arsonist.

Posted by: Peter AU 1 | May 11, 2018 9:02:14 PM |

..

Korybko interprets Russian signals as message to Assad to "compromise," which I don't agree with at all as such a "demand" backwalks numerous previous statements about Syria by Russia, which isn't normal Kremlin behavior. In essence, Korybko's arguing that the relationship between Zionists and Russia is more important than Russia's relations with Syria, Iraq, and Iran–a huge misread on his part, IMO.

Posted by: karlof1 | May 11, 2018

.

Strategic Culture's published a very powerful editorial. Teaser:

"The reckless, reprehensible behavior of the US towards international law, multilateralism and diplomacy – all of which it falsely projects onto Russia, China and others – is, or should be, a watershed moment for all of the world to recognize that such rogue conduct is intolerable and unacceptable.

"Either there is multilateral accord or there is not. Either there is a multipolar world as envisaged by a democracy of nations, or there is brutish hegemony of unipolar ambitions. The latter is not law-abiding. It is predicated on the brutish principle of "might is right". The world cannot afford such a hegemon for the sake of peace and survival."

It certainly echoes much of what's written by b and us Barflies.

Posted by: karlof1 | May 11, 2018

Russia's catching a lot of blogger-flak regarding its failure to go to war with Israel. That's not smart.

Here's the probable scenario as I see it, keeping in mind that the #1 priority for Russia is its own political interests and its own security, which is true of every country.

There are three allies concerned with Syria led by Russia, and including Turkey and Iran. Three unlkely allies, actually. But they are trying to get along, with Russia's objective a return of Syria to full sovereignty of all its territory, and a cessation of hostilities, with a Russian military presence. It's not been easy but there has been progress and it looks like Russia and its allies will be successful.

Iran has that objective too, but also has a strong interest in aiding Hezbollah as a powerful anti-Israel force. That includes provisioning Hezbollah in Syria with ballistic missiles.

Russia (in my probable scenario) said to Iran don't do that. It endangers our chief interest in Syria which is to win the war against US/Israel and end the warfare. Don't do anything that endangers that. But Iran did it anyhow, and has paid a price which Syria shares. And as a part of that, Russia has taken no action against Israel because it expected this might happen, that's why Iran was cautioned. Iran thought it could do whatever it wanted in Syria and it got burned.

So I say to anti-Russia bloggers, wake up and smell the coffee.

Posted by: Don Bacon | May 11, 2018

..

Here's what Putin said to Nuttyahoo according to Kremlin :

"Naturally, we will use your visit today to discuss bilateral relations and problems in the region. Unfortunately, the situation is very acute. I would like to express hope that you and I will not only manage to discuss, but also find solutions which will lead to a shift in the situation, and which will also allow us to find ways to resolve heated conflicts."

Putin's clearly aiming at de-escalation, while Nutty's all about escalating.

Posted by: karlof1 | May 11, 2018

I used to admire Korybko enormously, and I thought him a brilliant talent. I don't know what's happened in the last few months. Every one of his articles seems to be a mis-read. He's chosen a view of reality that I think is wrong, and everything he extrapolates from that is off-kilter.

We all choose at what level down the rabbit hole we want to go, but whatever it is, our predictions should accord with subsequent events, or we can know it's an inaccurate ledge to perch on. Korybko keeps saying there's a hidden agenda and a secret union between Israel and Russia that makes all the rest of the Syria campaign a sham. He's become as unreliable as Paul Craig Roberts at reading the true balances, and as unreliable, it pains me to say, as the Saker appears at times lately. They all call for the sky to fall tomorrow, or else say that it already has and the fix is in, and resistance is futile.

Miracles abound. But everyone is so damn gloomy. Is it a new CIA manic-depression drug? Radio waves? Crazy.

Posted by: Grieved | May 11, 2018

.

Too many cast Putin as Tsar; he is not. National security issues are discussed and solved by a council of same name through consensus. Same with Foreign Relations. One aspect of Russia that differs greatly from almost every Western nation is the Russian government acts in the best interest of all Russians , not just a select nomenclatura as in Outlaw US Empire and UK.

Posted by: karlof1 | May 11, 2018

During the course of the Ukraine war I, and I imagine many others, went through some of the feelings about Vladimir Putin that many people are expressing now. We grew impatient. We wanted Russia to go in and kick Porky's ass into the high heavens. We wanted the Chocolate King toasted. But Putin carried on with his minimalist strategy, his control over emotion and ego, his resource stinginess, providing just enough to the Donbas warriors, just enough. It was nail-biting and frustrating at times, but If Russia had gone into Ukraine, guns blazing (as Russia's enemies wanted) it would probably be bankrupt by now.

Scene change to Syria and we have the same minimum aircraft, troops, special forces Minimum but enough. Israel feels very strongly about the S-300. Putin and his generals have probably verified for themselves what they long suspected – that many products built by the US military industrials since the 1990s are pretty crap. Just look at the F-35 and the Boeing 787 "Dreamliner", which pilots and cabin crew refer to as the "binliner" due to its continuous faults. After a PHD on more-or-less this subject my humble self came to the same conclusion.

So do the Syrians really need the S-300 when they seem to be doing fine with what they have got? They could be beefed up with some Pantsirs and Buks. Why antagonize Israel needlessly? Why risk WWIII? Why risk Russia's World Cup – when sabotage and stealth are what the Israelis are best at? Why not just keep slipping Assad stuff that will keep the Israeli's guessing?

Posted by: Lochearn | May 11, 2018

.

@ Grieved who wrote: "Miracles abound. But everyone is so damn gloomy. Is it a new CIA manic-depression drug? Radio waves? Crazy."

The more the elite can rile the public with fear and anger against others the better their chances of manipulating events to their ends at least that is their plan and I am not seeing white flags yet.

Yes, we are in the middle of a watershed event for humanity where the real issue of whether a small elite continue to control the tools of finance is being fought as a battle between Israel et al and the rest of the world through Syria/Iran/??? That the issues are so intertwined and so misunderstood by the public is a human travesty that I attribute to brainwashing by the Western media.

The good thing about this situation is that we are in it because the old way is breaking down all around us and energy abounds for supporting structural change. For someone who has been watching and waiting for 40+ years, I am DAMN happy to see such an opportunity for human growth present itself in my lifetime.

Posted by: psychohistorian | May 11, 2018

@ 27

Peskov corrects :

May 11. /TASS/. The refusal to supply the S-300 air defense missile systems to Syria is not linked in any way with the recent visit by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to Moscow, acting Kremlin Spokesman Dmitry Peskov said on Friday.

Peskov commented on a statement, which acting Russian Presidential Aide for Military and Technical Cooperation Vladimir Kozhin gave in an interview with the newspaper Izvestia.

"Technologically, it is absolutely incorrect to link this [Kozhin's words] with Netanyahu's visit because the interview was given before Netanyahu's visit," the acting Kremlin spokesman pointed out.

Russia has never announced such deliveries and only specified that it reserves the right in the wake of US-led airstrikes against Syria to do everything possible in this situation.

In an interview published on Friday, Kozhin said that Russia was not delivering the S-300 air defense missile systems to Syria and no talks had been underway on their delivery thus far.

As the acting Kremlin spokesman added, the Syrian army "has everything it needs."

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov stated on April 16 that Russia was ready to consider all necessary steps to reinforce Syria's defense capabilities, including the delivery of the S-300 systems.

Unlike the West, RF does not pre-announce. Just do it!

Do you think Putin is pleased about this?

Israeli Weapons Among Arms Handed Over to Syrian Army By Terrorists in Damascus

Oh, not just medical aid!

Posted by: Likklemore | May 11, 2018

..

Explanation of Russia's approach by Andrei Korybko. Russia is taking a balance-of-power approach, not a bloc approach, to Syria. Hence its ambiguous stances towards Turkey, Iran, and Israel. Beyond what is required to defeat the Takfiris and assure the stability of the Syrian government, the rest is negotiable. Putin does not want the situation between Iran and Israel to escalate, and to that end is seeking greater influence in Syria vis-a-vis Iran.

http://www.eurasiafuture.com/2018/05/09/why-cry-its-great-news-that-trump-pulled-out-of-the-iran-deal/

..

Such a massive organized aggression has been inflicted on Syria, so much effort has been put into sujugating and destroying Syria, the Syrians have suffered so horribly. Years of economic warfare – sanctions, tens of thousands of mercenary madmen from dozens of countries deployed against Syria, entire cities destroyed, massive amounts of arms and financing provided to the madmen, global mass media disinformation deployed, oil stolen, thousands of US bombs dropped, continual Israeli attacks and subterfuge, NATO special forces deployed, massive mercenary underground construction project at Douma, false flags, Turkish aggression, Saudi complicity, and more.

And how do things stand, after seven years of this? Syrians are inspirational for their resistance, Syria is battered but winning, Russia's standing has risen as she has saved Syria, the mercenaries are largely eliminated or herded into specific areas; Israelis and Americans have lost yet more international standing, are more obviously outlaw regimes, and have lost self confidence; their military intimidation is more and more lacking in real authority. NATO is licking its wounds and is less cohesive, occupied Germany is showing signs of awakening, Turkey and the US are at odds, the British are a malicious joke, the Saudis are weaker, Iran and Lebanon are stronger, Iraqis despise the Americans, China is stronger.

Meanwhile, Russia too has been under US led economic warfare attack, and near global disinformation attack, and demonization. And yet she too is stronger in many ways than she was just a few years ago.

Posted by: Robert Snefjella | May 11, 2018

..

karlof1 @20

There's nothing in that statement that approves of Israel's attack. And informing Putin of a changed stance due to a perception that 'red lines' were crossed (red lines that would've been discussed weeks or months prior) would be positioned by Netanyahu as a courtesy ( when it is really just a sneaky attempt at battlefield advantage).

Here's a thought (not fully baked):the Russians have their eye on the ball. Those who are focused on Zionists as a problem for a West easily miss the fact that USA is a bigger problem for Russia than Israel. USA is the "power behind the throne". Zionists and neocons may manipulate that power but it is better for Russia to make an effort to separate Israel from the West. You catch more flies with honey.

If SCO becomes strong enough to offer meaningful security guarantees and Israel also has an opportunity to participate in lucrative economic opportunities in Eurasia then Israel might be enticed to end it's belligerent manipulation of US. It may require a new generation of leadership in Israel before that happens. Russia-China are playing long games.

Posted by: Jackrabbit

.

OJS:

So you run around spouting your hatred for Putin because he does not proclaim himself world policeman and and does not crap on about R2P. As he has said, he is not anybodies friend. He is the president of the Russian federation.

In this video I linked earlier, he plainly states his position on Israel.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wJnIsbo5uMs

Like it or not Putin recognizes and operates within International law and Russian law, and respects UN recognized borders. Putin, all the time he has been President has operated on the principle of evolution not revolution. He is not about to change now.

Posted by: Peter AU 1 | May 11, 2018

The more the elite can rile the public with fear and anger against others the better their chances of manipulating events to their ends at least that is their plan and I am not seeing white flags yet.

Yes, we are in the middle of a watershed event for humanity where the real issue of whether a small elite continue to control the tools of finance is being fought as a battle between Israel et al and the rest of the world through Syria/Iran/??? That the issues are so intertwined and so misunderstood by the public is a human travesty that I attribute to brainwashing by the Western media.

The good thing about this situation is that we are in it because the old way is breaking down all around us and energy abounds for supporting structural change. For someone who has been watching and waiting for 40+ years, I am DAMN happy to see such an opportunity for human growth present itself in my lifetime.

Posted by: psychohistorian | May 11, 2018

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

I'll add a few other things that may or may not be of interest:

'Who we are, why we're digging: Team probing Syrian war & Skripal poisoning case reveal all', the UK working group on Syria, propaganda, and media, via RT (with this video, 9:26)

[May 13, 2018] Confusion over Netanyahu visit to Moscow and Putin passivity over recurrent Israeli strikes of Syria territory

Notable quotes:
"... Suppose there were no Russia in Syria, what would have happened? Libya would have been the fate. Most likely US would have recognized Golan Ht as Israel's. Oil harvesting companies would become more visible. Lebanon would have been in flames. Nothing else in ME. Some more terror attacks in EU may be. ..."
"... The real purpose of the Donald's missile-rattling is nothing more than helping Bibi Netanyahu keep his coalition of right wing religious and settler parties (Likud, United Torah Judaism, Shas, Kulanu and the Jewish Home) together, thereby maintaining his slim 61-vote majority in the 120-seat Knesset. ..."
"... Netanyahu's malefic political glue is the utterly false claim that Iran is an "existential threat" to Israel because it is hell-bent on getting the bomb. ..."
"... As a matter of record, of course, Netanyahu has been saying this since the early 1990s and he has always been wrong because there were never any facts or logic to support his blatant fear-mongering. ..."
May 13, 2018 | www.unz.com

Originally from: The Skripals will most likely never be allowed to talk, by The Saker - The Unz Review

There have been major developments this week, all of them bad, including Putin re-nominating Medvedev as his Prime Minister, and Bibi Netanyahu invited to Moscow to the Victory Day Parade in spite of him bombing Syria, a Russian ally, just on the eve of his visit. Once in Moscow, Netanyahu compared Iran to, what else, Nazi Germany . How original and profound indeed! Then he proceeded to order the bombing of Syria for a second time , while still in Moscow. But then, what can we expect from a self-worshiping narcissist who finds it appropriate to serve food to the Japanese Prime Minister in a specially made shoe ? The man is clearly batshit crazy (which in no way makes him less evil or dangerous). But it is the Russian reaction which is so totally disgusting: nothing, absolutely nothing. Unlike others, I have clearly said that it is not the Russian responsibility to "protect" Syria (or Iran) from the Israelis. But there is no doubt in my mind that Netanyahu has just publicly thumbed his nose at Putin and that Putin took it. For all my respect for Putin, this time he allowed Netanyahu to treat him just like Trump treated Macron. Except that in the case of Putin, he was so treated in his own capital. That makes it even worse.

[Interestingly, while whining about "Nazi Iran" Netanyahu did say something truly profound and true. He said " an important history lesson: when a murderous ideology emerges, one has to push back against it before it is too late". That is indeed exactly what most people across the world feel about Israel and its Zionist ideology but, alas, their voice is completely ignored by those who rule over them. So yes, it sure looks to me like it is becoming "too late" and that the consequences for our collective cowardice -- most of us are absolutely terrified from speaking the plain truth about our Zionist overlords - will cost us all a terrible price.]

Then, of course, there is Donald Trump pulling out of the so-called Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) in spite of Iran's full compliance and in spite of the fact that the US does not have the authority to unilaterally withdraw from this multilateral agreement. But being the megalomaniac that he is, and not to mention the spineless lackey of the Israel Lobby, Trump ignored all that and thereby created further tensions between the US and the rest of the world whom the US will now blackmail and bully to try to force it to support the US in its rabid subservience to Israel. As for the Israelis, their "sophisticated" "strategy" is primitive to the extreme: first get Trump to create maximal tensions with Iran, then attack the Iranians in Syria as visibly and arrogantly as possible, bait the Iranians into a retaliation, then bellow "OI VEY!!!" with your loudest voice, mention the Holocaust once or twice, toss in a "6 million people" figure, and get the US to attack Syria.

How anybody can respect, nevermind admire, the Israelis is simply beyond comprehension. I sure can't think of a more contemptible, nasty, psychopathic gang of megalomanical thugs (and cowards) than the Israelis. Can you?

Nonetheless, it appears undeniable that the Zionists have enough power to simultaneously force not one, but two (supposed) superpowers to cave into their demands. Not only that, they have the power to do that while also putting these two superpowers on a collision course against each other. At the very least, this shows two things: the United States has completely lost its sovereignty and is now an Israeli protectorate. As for Russia, well, she is doing comparatively better, but the full re-sovereignization the Russian people have voted for when they gave their overwhelming support to Putin will not happen. A comment I read on a Russian chat put it: "Путин кинул народ -- мы не за Медведева голосовали" or " Putin betrayed the people -- we did not vote for Medvedev ". I am not sure that "betrayed the people" is fair, but the fact that he has disappointed a lot of people is, I think, simply undeniable.

It is still way too early to reach any conclusions at this point, and there are still way too many unknown variables, but I will admit that I am very worried and that for the first time in 4 years I am having major doubts about a fundamental policy decision by Putin. I sure hope that I am wrong. We will find out relatively soon. I just hope that this will not be in the form of a major war.

animalogic , May 11, 2018 at 8:14 am GMT

Paul Craig Roberts has repeatedly, for some years now, questioned Putin's apparent willingness to bend over backwards to placate his "partners" in the West.

PCR has maintained consistently that the West can not be trusted, that Russia's attempts at accommodation are taken as signs of weakness, acting only to embolden the West in its continuing vicious assaults.

Of course, Russia is playing for time: hoping that over time the strategic tables will increasing tip in its own & China's etc favour.
However, I suspect Saker & PCR are right: further submission will only lead to ever more vicious attacks. This is made all the worse by China's unwillingness to assert itself internationally as the 2nd largest economic power. (As if it can't see the US strategy, via tariffs etc to retard, if not destroy its future economic development)

One might have a tiny mite of hope that the West might ultimately act sanely. However, with the Zionists now pulling all the strings sanity is over & out.

Momus , May 11, 2018 at 8:20 am GMT
Netanyahu is regarded in Washington, and perhaps also Moscow, as almost Churchillian for his efforts to protect Israel and by extension the region and the US.

Who among us wants horizontal nuclear proliferation and a nuked up Iran armed with ICBM's?

Intelligent Dasein , Website May 11, 2018 at 9:45 am GMT
I've been
Intelligent Dasein , Website May 11, 2018 at 9:45 am GMT
I've been waiting to hear your take, Saker, since things are very bad indeed. I did not like what I saw happen on May 9th. Here is my very abbreviated take on it.

Bibi knows that he's pulled Trump fully into the Israeli orbit. He as much as told Putin he would attack Syria and dared him to do anything about it. If Putin responded with force, that would provide Israel and America with all the provocation they need to go all-in against Syria, Iran, and Russia, which is what the Ziocons were hoping to accomplish anyway. Putin, seeing all this and being the better man, can only sit back and take it. For now.

Bibi pissed in Putin's face and nobody could do a thing about it. But the whole world saw what happened and nobody with half a brain is on the side of the Israelis. I'm no longer upset that Putin didn't respond. He has admirable restraint and patience. The very hand of God Himself will move against the Israelis for all their crimes and treachery, and Putin will still be one of His chief instruments.

Robert Magill , May 11, 2018 at 10:01 am GMT

How anybody can respect, nevermind admire, the Israelis is simply beyond comprehension. I sure can't think of a more contemptible, nasty, psychopathic gang of megalomanical thugs (and cowards) than the Israelis. Can you?

Yes I can, Saker, you live among them.

Then, of course, there is Donald Trump pulling out of the so-called Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) in spite of Iran's full compliance and in spite of the fact that the US does not have the authority to unilaterally withdraw from this multilateral agreement

.

See Club Orlov http://cluborlov.blogspot.com/ 5/10 regarding the 120+ billion of Iranian money we hold in dollars the dead broke US gets to keep by pulling out of the deal.

https://robertmagill.wordpress.com/2018/04/30/and-then-we-were-capitalists-or/

Rafael Martorell , May 11, 2018 at 10:23 am GMT
Good call. That is why we follow you Saker. It is the responsability of the american men to rebel and fix this goverment.

Im from cuba and the worst part here is that we have been delivered to be control and saked by people that we took the lunch from them when we where kids,in the school yard.

The Scalpel , Website May 11, 2018 at 11:32 am GMT
@utu

Agree. Putin seems to have rolled over and is crying uncle. Sad. Perhaps he is waiting until his new weapons are fully stockpiled before he makes any serious attempts to defend -- ultimately -- himself and his nation.

Without Russia putting some brakes on the Empire's unopposed oppressions, there is little hope for truth, justice, etc. in the world. There is no attempt to print the truth in national publications (that has been going on for a long time), and increasingly, little attempt to hide the fact that they are not printing the truth. The masses, instead of rebelling against obvious lies, seem to have internalized doublethink and do not have any significant impulse to rise up and defend their own interests. The propaganda is too thick, too strong, and too unopposed. Things look grim.

utu , May 11, 2018 at 11:45 am GMT
@Momus

Who among us wants horizontal nuclear proliferation and a nuked up Iran armed with ICBM's?

I think that would be a good check of Israel's power that could stabilize the ME and return to the path of development that existed there still till early 1980s when the process of destabilization began which was a part of the Yinon plan. If Israel remains the absolutely dominant power people in ME countries will be allowed to live in Hobbesian chaotic world only where they will be encouraged to engage in ethnic and sectarian fighting forever.

Anatoly Karlin , Website May 11, 2018 at 11:54 am GMT

How anybody can respect, nevermind admire, the Israelis is simply beyond comprehension.

Why not? Israel has been successfully expanding its territory, and getting two superpowers to cave into its demands (Saker's own words). That is pretty admirable in my book. This is certainly worth of both respect and admiration, even if one otherwise wishes to see Israel burn in a sea of atomic fire.

Anyhow, there's no reason for Russia to care. Increased American tensions with Iran will raise the price of oil. Also a reminder that the Kremlin couldn't care less about American murders of Russian mercenaries. So in what world will they concern themselves with Iranian ones.

A comment I read on a Russian chat put it: "Путин кинул народ -- мы не за Медведева голосовали" or "Putin betrayed the people -- we did not vote for Medvedev".

Ah yes, the сирийские братушки ("Syrian brothers"). Perhaps Western Russophiles consider them such, but few Russians do.

So The Saker is correct, Putin did not betray "his" people. (Well, he did, but that happened in 2014, not now).

utu , May 11, 2018 at 11:59 am GMT
@Intelligent Dasein

I'm no longer upset that Putin didn't respond. He has admirable restraint and patience. The very hand of God Himself will move against the Israelis for all their crimes and treachery, and Putin will still be one of His chief instruments.

This is your wishful thinking talking. You are still upset with Putin and you should be. May 9 parade with Netanyahu and bombing in Syria really looked very bad. To me it signified Putin's capitulation. At least it is the end game and Russia realized she was outplayed as she is apparently not ready to go all the way with the nuclear blackmail. Putin will stay put waiting for the stupid World Cup while Netanyahu will be escalating or some face saving measure will be found for Russia to withdraw from Syria or Russia will be invited to be a part of occupational government there.

Chinese looking from afar probably are disappointed but they never trusted Russian corrupt elite staying the course.

Passer by , May 11, 2018 at 6:20 pm GMT
Ex-Finance Minister Kudrin to head Accounts Chamber: http://tass.com/economy/1003887
anon [228] Disclaimer , May 11, 2018 at 10:28 pm GMT
@Anatoly Karlin

Suppose there were no Russia in Syria, what would have happened? Libya would have been the fate. Most likely US would have recognized Golan Ht as Israel's. Oil harvesting companies would become more visible. Lebanon would have been in flames. Nothing else in ME. Some more terror attacks in EU may be.

But would these have changed the internal dynamics within US ? No It would not. US would still be going down the path it has been and that path would still be what it is today at home and abroad.

Social anarchy, takeover of Democrats by non-whites , takeover of GOP by religious militant and bipartisan tax cutting for pro big business will continue unhindered . Is it good? No. But good for the destruction of the country. That is good . ME without USA would then look like no different until Russia also faces the same fate that has happened to Wiemar Germany and Egyptian/ Persian in the historical past.

ME Shoa will have to wait for few more decades

M7 , May 12, 2018 at 1:14 am GMT
How about Putin showing Bibi what is in store for who harms Russia ? I can see Putin talking in symbols.
jim76 , May 12, 2018 at 1:38 am GMT
on another note after seeing shabas putin next to netanyahu holding picture of a commie terrorist commissar let me say Saker the "ukronazis" have the stalinist russians pegged right thank God they left Russia some hope for a jew free state
https://news.antiwar.com/2018/05/11/putin-backs-off-giving-syria-s-300-systems-after-netanyahu-meeting/

De-escalation!

Realist , May 12, 2018 at 8:19 am GMT
@animalogic

Paul Craig Roberts has repeatedly, for some years now, questioned Putin's apparent willingness to bend over backwards to placate his "partners" in the West.

The problem isn't bending over backward .it's bending over forward.

Realist , May 12, 2018 at 8:22 am GMT
@Momus

Netanyahu is regarded in Washington, and perhaps also Moscow, as almost Churchillian for his efforts to protect Israel and by extension the region and the US.

Protecting Israel does nothing for the US.

El Dato , May 12, 2018 at 11:45 am GMT
https://theintercept.com/2018/05/11/american-saudi-arabia-weapons-deal-yemen-uae/

I wonder what Saudi Arabia and the UAE could want with 60'000 precision-guided munitions?

El Dato , May 12, 2018 at 12:21 pm GMT
Rather OT, but still. Probably worthy of Unz-topping:

The remarkable disappearing act of Israel's car-bombing campaign in Lebanon or: What we (do not) talk about when we talk about 'terrorism'

"With Sharon's backing, terrible things were done. I am no vegetarian, and I supported and even participated in some of the assassination operations Israel carried out. But we are speaking here about mass killing for killing's sake, to sow chaos and alarm, among civilians, too. Since when do we send donkeys carrying bombs to blow up in marketplaces?"

-- Mossad officer, quoted in Ronen Bergman's Rise and Kill First: The Secret History of Israel's Targeted Assassinations

Anomie.

AP , May 12, 2018 at 5:11 pm GMT
@Felix Keverich

Ukrainian president and prime-minister are both Jews

Poroshenko being (half-) Jewish is fake news. Allegedly his father was Jewish and changed his surname. Actually this is his father:

https://ru.wikipedia.org/wiki/Порошенко,_Алексей_Иванович

The family originate from a Russian garrison-town on the Romanian border which had been populated by Ukrainians, Russian, Bulgarans, and no Jews.

There is even fake news that Parubiy is Jewish!

Both Poroshenko's parents are ethnic Ukrainians and he is an Orthodox Christian.

All the Ukrainian olygarchs, with the sole exception of Ahmetov, are Jews

Richest people in Ukraine:

Poroshenko -- Ukrainian
Akhmetov -- Tatar
Boholiubov -- Jewish
Tyhypko -- Ukrainian
Korban -- Jewish
Kosiuk -- Ukrainian
Zhevago -Russian
Novinsky -- Russian, major supporter of Russian Orthodox Church
Kolomoysky -- Jewish
Pinchuk -- Jewish
Tymoshenko- 1/2 Ukrainian, 1/4 Latvian, 1/4 Jewish (1/4 Jewish isn't Jewish)

So 4/11 are Jewish.

What is Russia's ratio?

Svigor , May 13, 2018 at 3:03 am GMT

[Interestingly, while whining about "Nazi Iran" Netanyahu did say something truly profound and true. He said "an important history lesson: when a murderous ideology emerges, one has to push back against it before it is too late". That is indeed exactly what most people across the world feel about Israel and its Zionist ideology but, alas, their voice is completely ignored by those who rule over them. So yes, it sure looks to me like it is becoming "too late" and that the consequences for our collective cowardice -- most of us are absolutely terrified from speaking the plain truth about our Zionist overlords - will cost us all a terrible price.]

Add to that the Jews' other genocidal favorites; diversity, multiculturalism, open borders, and anti-nationalism-fur-de-goyim.

Of course, Saker and his fellow cucked "Russian nationalists" don't add them, which is part of the reason that I'm indifferent to Russian nationalists anymore.

Then, of course, there is Donald Trump pulling out of the so-called Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) in spite of Iran's full compliance and in spite of the fact that the US does not have the authority to unilaterally withdraw from this multilateral agreement.

Let's just say I'm not taking flatheads' word on this one.

In the meantime, I want to refocus on the Skripal case.

Only took you like a thousand words to get around to the point; congratulations.

Svigor , May 13, 2018 at 3:08 am GMT
@animalogic

This is made all the worse by China's unwillingness to assert itself internationally as the 2nd largest economic power. (As if it can't see the US strategy, via tariffs etc to retard, if not destroy its future economic development)

In reality the US strategy is now to be a bit less than a total globalist-run whorehouse. Which will probably be changed back with the next new president. China's main concern will be internal stability and security for the foreseeable future.

Svigor , May 13, 2018 at 3:13 am GMT
@Momus

Who among us wants horizontal nuclear proliferation and a nuked up Iran armed with ICBM's?

Who among us wants to admit that the ship has kinda sailed, given Israeli and Pakistani nukes?

Biff , May 13, 2018 at 4:58 am GMT
@Momus

Who among us wants horizontal nuclear proliferation and a nuked up Iran armed with ICBM's?

I would rather see Iran with nukes than Israel. The world would be a better place.

jilles dykstra , May 13, 2018 at 6:11 am GMT
One indeed can admire how a few thousand jews wield such power. I consider the rest of jewry as their victims.
But then, why not admire Hitler, he was on his own.
In both cases, disaster struck.

Jews still do not see that the present situation in the USA resembles the Weimar Republic. Henry Ford knew this quite well 'in the end most Jewish enterprises fail through overconfidence'. Possibly the first time was when they were, as is asserted, implicated in the murder of the Roman emperor. Rome twice sent big armies to Palestine. If Rome also invented Christianity to undermine them, it remains an interesting theory.

Daisy , May 13, 2018 at 6:11 am GMT
@Intelligent Dasein

I am inclined to agree with you Putin is smarter and would not/cannot fall for the bait. I believe history will confirm that he will save the human race from total annihilation that we possibly face in months/years to come. I was hoping that Trump would also be a force for good but my view is changing as each day passes. I do not understand the subservient position that the US takes with Israel. Yes there is an aggressive Zionist faction who control America and yes nobody dares speak out against them but there must come a time when enough is enough. Unfortunately if Trump meant it when he said he would drain the swamp he has been prevented from doing so.

Sam J. , May 13, 2018 at 6:55 am GMT
I wouldn't be too hard on Putin. I have a whacked theory that the Jews see the control of the USA slipping. 9-11 was a huge screw up and more and more people know. They had talked of moving to India or China but I don't think that will work. Neither will allow the same stunts they have pulled around Whites. I think the psychopathic Jews are breed to be a parasite on the White Man and it will never work elsewhere. So they're fucked. What can they do? Well if you're a psychopath then the best thing to do would be to start a China/Russia vs. USA nuke war and while this goes on nuke the Europeans, Arabs and maybe a little germ warfare thrown in for good measure. You sit in the middle and hunker down then start over.

Now this may be completely crazy but psychopaths are crazy by most peoples definition and the above is perfectly logical. Maybe Putin doesn't think of it in directly these terms like I laid out but he can't help but notice that these animals are off, a lot. The Jews position gets worse every single day. They will have no luck at all disarming the Americans and the internet, despite their censorship, can;t be completely closed down. Their media platform is failing. No one believes what they say.

We should get rid of the Jews. Peacefully if we can but by any means necessary. Jewish populations upon moving into another territory are in no way distinguishable from a tribe of psychopaths over the long term. No one wants to live with psychopaths.

El Dato , May 13, 2018 at 7:10 am GMT
@Svigor

Let's just say I'm not taking flatheads' word on this one.

Reminder that this is the task of the IAEA.

Which sadly doesn't have the permission to check Israel's nuclear 'nads.

Monty Ahwazi , May 13, 2018 at 7:33 am GMT
Mr Saker,
I agree with your first part of the article and if I may add, Putin is a corrupt capitalist much like his brother in the US, Trump! They do love wealth and power so much that they both are prime targets for corruption by the wealthy Z's. Now that they both have become pawns and subservient to a third party, the Z's are dancing in street for taking control of the 2 superpowers! The one point that I'd disagree with is about your concerns of the 2 super powers having to come closer to a potential military conflict! Since a third party has taken control of the two superpowers the 2 countries are NOT allowed to challenge each other militarily because there's zero or even less than zero benefits for the real people who are in charge!
chris , May 13, 2018 at 9:09 am GMT
@yurivku

It was a real stab in the back for our allies and that's really hard to see.

I definitely see yours and the Saker's arguments in making this point, however, personally, it all looks to me like act 1 of a bigger play. Like Trump, Putin seems to make his concessions up front, but there must, by necessity be a payback concession somewhere down the road; if their allowed survival itself isn't the original concession already.

The nature of the understanding between Russia and Israel, which has not been covered anywhere in the news, must ultimately not be so difficult to determine for journalists investigating it, if such journalists actually existed.

None of them has any interest in covering this, however, because: the west can't deviate from the onslaught of Russian vilification; Russia, doesn't want to show its vulnerabilities and Israel doesn't want to show its power.

But I suspect some of this will come to light as the next phase of operations against Iran.

El Dato , May 13, 2018 at 9:40 am GMT
David Stockman got it:

https://original.antiwar.com/David_Stockman/2018/05/11/the-deep-state-first-madness-on-both-ends-of-the-acela-corridor/

The mere threat of a military attack from the White House is madness because it arises from blatant lies that have absolutely nothing to do with US national security. Nor, for that matter, the security of any other country in the region, including Saudi Arabia and Israel.

The real purpose of the Donald's missile-rattling is nothing more than helping Bibi Netanyahu keep his coalition of right wing religious and settler parties (Likud, United Torah Judaism, Shas, Kulanu and the Jewish Home) together, thereby maintaining his slim 61-vote majority in the 120-seat Knesset.

Netanyahu's malefic political glue is the utterly false claim that Iran is an "existential threat" to Israel because it is hell-bent on getting the bomb.

But that's where the whopper comes in. It amounts to the ridiculous postulate that Iran is so fiendishly evil that if it is involved in the nuclear fuel cycle in any way, shape or form -- presumably even just operating a uranium mine -- it is only a matter of months before it will have a bomb.

As a matter of record, of course, Netanyahu has been saying this since the early 1990s and he has always been wrong because there were never any facts or logic to support his blatant fear-mongering.

But maybe this will blow the top on the economic fiction that's been going on since at leads Greenspan:

And that gets us to the madness at the other end of the Acela Corridor. On a day in which there was no good news whatsoever -- except that defense spending will go ever higher making the impending yield shock even worse -- the stock market rose by another 1%.

There is no mystery as to why, however. Honest price discovery and the discounting of real world information was totally destroyed by the Fed's monetary central planners years ago.

The only thing the casino discounts today is the trading points on the hourly, daily and weekly stock charts, and the presumption that both the fiscal and central banking branches of the state stand ready to "stimulate" whenever a serious breach occurs on the charts.

Nothing could be more mistaken -- and for reasons we will amplify upon in Part 2.

But the spoiler alert is this: The private sector is now swamped under record and unsustainable debt in both the household and business sectors. By succumbing to the most incendiary Deep State meme of all -- the Iranian Nuke lie -- the Donald has now made a public debt catastrophe an absolute certainty.

Pat Pappano , May 13, 2018 at 9:42 am GMT
It looks like a smackdown following the announcement of the superweapons. My thought on Putin's gloating show was why not keep these weaponse developments secret. Once the toothpaste is out of the tube you can't push it back in. One explanation may be that Putin thought he was in charge up to that point, but may have found out differently. I don't know if Russia has a Rothschild central bank. But agreed, it certainly looks bad. Plus Israel has hit Syria again. It all looks very bad.
Rabbitnexus , May 13, 2018 at 10:21 am GMT
@Momus

Don't be ridiculous,. Most of us would trust Iran with nukes even if they wanted them, which they do not, before the Zionist terrorist state. As the Saker said. "How anybody can respect, never mind admire, the Israelis is simply beyond comprehension. I sure can't think of a more contemptible, nasty, psychopathic gang of megalomaniacal thugs (and cowards) than the Israelis. "

ussia's objectives in Syria are not identical to their own? Are they not students of history?

I can only imagine the negotiations that went on in Russia among Netanyahu and company and the Russian government. I'm certain that Russia made assurances that it would not provide S-300 systems. What did Netanyahu have to pay for that? Perhaps assurances that he would stop pushing the Americans to bomb Syrian positions? I don't know. You have an imagination. Think of what Putin wants that Netanyahu could provide.

animalogic , May 13, 2018 at 11:42 am GMT
@Wally

I congratulate Mr Roberts for his courage.
"We must take it on faith alone."
I also agree with all his references to Israel. I loathe people who demand acts of faith (or self induced stupidity)

Iris , May 13, 2018 at 11:45 am GMT
@Pat Pappano

Yours is a very relevant point.

Russia has a national, sovereign, bank , led by a very competent economist, Elvira Nabiulina.

However, Russia's economy is not a match to its military status. Russia's entire GDP is lower than South Korea's, and is only slightly over twice the Pentagon's budget.

I think this is one of the reasons why President Putin must tread carefully: Russia's economy and internal stability are very vulnerable to external economic and financial pressure.

[May 13, 2018] Russia goals in Syria vs Iran and Hezbollah goals

May 13, 2018 | www.unz.com

Frankie P , May 13, 2018 at 11:00 am GMT

@utu

I am a supporter of the Resistance. I support resistance to American hegmony, the idea of a unipolar world with the rest of the nations following American dictates. I support resistance by American citizens against the ideas of American exceptionalism, ongoing foreign belligerence that benefits only the Military Industrial Complex and a certain "shitty little country in the Levant". I support resistance to the Zionist State, the ongoing crimes perpetrated by the Zionists against both the indigenous Palestinians in their own nation and against their neighboring Arab countries. I support American resistance to the stranglehold that supporters of Israel enjoy on the political system in the US.

Therefore, I support actors such as China and Russia in that they are cooperating to balance the unbridled hubris and exceptionalism of my country, providing a balance, a multi-polar future. Iran has become a lynchpin in this geopolitical competition, being positioned smack in the middle of a horizontal (OBOR/BRI initiative) and vertical (Russia's energy cooperation ideas) axis of the future.

I support Iran, Iraq, Syria and Lebanon (Hizbollah) in their desire to remain independent, complete nations while supporting the Palestinians and fighting against the Zionists.

I am not so naive, however, to imagine that all the components of the resistance have similar goals in specific areas, in this case the Syrian situation. It is more than curious to see people saying that Putin "sold out" Syria and Iran. Do you not consider that Putin is acting for the benefit of the Russian nation and Russian interests, and not for the benefit of the rest of the resistance and their program? Do you not realize that without the Russian action in support of the Assad administration, he would certainly have lost his nation, a nation that would currently be a destabilized basket case, a series of fragments falling under control of various Sunnite head choppers, Kurdish militias, and government remnants?

It is important to consider the objectives of the resistance players in Syria, both short- and long-term. Russia's objectives in Syria have been to keep the nation united and integrated, under the control of the current legitimate government until democratic elections can be held at some future date. Russia wants to prevent a radical Sunni movement from threatening its southern flank, sending activists to radicalize the Sunni populations in its Caucasus region. Another more recent objective of Russia in this long-term goal is to keep the Americans out of Syria as much as possible, hoping that the cessation of military action and the return of Syrian government control will lead to removal of all US troops.

The Russian goals do NOT include the destruction of the Zionist State, the return of the Golan Heights to Syria, or the emancipation of the Palestinian people. It is very important to keep this in mind.

The goals of the providers of the boots on the ground that saved the Syrian government, namely Hizbollah, Iran, and the Iraqi Shiite militias, extend beyond the scope of the Russian goals, at least as far as long-term targets are concerned. These players certainly share the Russian goals of shoring up the Assad regime, destroying the Daesh forces, both mercenary and local, and returning Syria to the stable ally that it was. There are more goals for these forces, though, and these goals are clear for all to see.

Hizbollah wants the return of all Lebanese territory to Lebanon. Hizbollah, Iran, and Syria want the return of the Golan Heights to Syrian control. They rightfully see the stabilization of the situation in Syria, the massing of their forces, hardened, battle tested forces, as an excellent opportunity to engage Israel and take back territory.

They realize that the Syrian air defenses are much improved, and although Israel is still able to attack Syrian targets with impunity, there is more risk.

They have made plans and accumulated missiles, accurate, precision missiles that will be able to attack Israeli military positions in the Golan Heights, for example, the IDF electronic surveillance / EW positions on Mt. Hermon. These provide the Israelis with direct line-of-sight to most of the Damascus Plain. What would happen if Syria/Iran/Hizbollah used a precision missile strike to take out the Israeli's eyes, as well as the AD jammers and other equipment? All of these players also want a fair and just solution for the Palestinian people, the recovery of their ability to determine their own future on terms that are acceptable to them. I support these goals. I am not Putin.

Remember, an escalation in military action between the Israelis and the Syrian/Iranian/Hizbollah forces in southern Syria will be viewed by Russia as a greater risk for its own troops, and a greater chance that the US will interfere more forcefully in the country. The Russians want to avoid this. Do I like this? Of course not. Keep in mind my own views, and the forces of the resistance that I said that I support. Do I feel that the Russians sold out thier allies? No way. Do you really think that the generals of the IRGC and Hassan Nasrallah are unaware of the fact that R

[May 04, 2018] Sic Semper Tyrannis The Skripals survived, but their cat and rodents ... not so much.

Notable quotes:
"... I am reading Taleb's recent book "Skin in the game" which has interesting material about the disconnection between risky behaviors and their consequences in modern USA. He also has a chapter about the mechanics involved in why minority viewpoints in our culture become dominant. It's an interesting read. ..."
"... Finally, the Police partially acknowledged their mistake and accused the Russians of not having been completely fair play. Indeed, these thuriferous bastards of Vlad the Impaler had put poison on the OUTDOOR handle of the front door of the house. It's infinitely subtle of these savages. The Brit Police did not suspect what strong part it had to make, the unexpected thwarting its learned calculations. Presumption, again and again. Nevertheless, the detectives are formal: the Russians did the trick well. The evidence is obvious. In this dramatic case, we are not going to make a comparison between insular and continental logic. The hour is too serious for these trifles. Lots of laughter. ..."
"... It's very difficult in any case to believe that such a notice could have been issued. Can't see why it would be needed. The scripting of the official story on such matters as this seems to be a joint enterprise between the media and the press officers. That's a time-honoured consensus so why would the media need bullying to stay in line? ..."
"... My personal view on all this is that the No. 10 press officers aren't that good at this new-fangled information stuff. They don't seem to have their hearts in it somehow. Time for them to go back to counting paperclips and for information campaigns to be handled by the experts. The BBC have a proven track record in this field and it's time that was officially recognised. ..."
May 03, 2018 | turcopolier.typepad.com

Sir Mark, bless him, has told an MP during a committee meeting, that the armed forces, MI-5, MI-6 and GCHQ do not know who or indeed what sickened the Skripals, pere et fille , in Salisbury. He doesn't seem to have mentioned the police. So, basically, pilgrims, Teresa May, the queen's first minister has insistently and incessantly accused the Russians of a crime of which our British cousins know precious little. In a closely related development, it is now revealed that the Britishers sealed up Skripal's house after the poisoning event leaving the black Persian shown above and two guinea pigs to die of thirst and hunger within. It would seem likely that they knew they were doing this since they would have searched the house first. No? Perhaps they thought that the cat might be a threat as a being of possible Iranian descent. This is impressive stuff. pl https://www.usnews.com/news/world/articles/2018-05-01/uk-has-not-yet-identified-skripal-poisoning-suspects


Eric Newhill , 11 hours ago

These false flag ops are all so shabby in their execution. The lack of thoroughness and imagination on the part of the governments running them is really disappointing. For example, if I was running an investigation into the Skripal incident, I would have captured the cat and rodents and run pathology tests on them to see what bio/chem agents might be in their systems. Also, because they might escape and become a vector of further infection. That seems like it would be SOP. So I'd do it even if I knew the story was BS to create the appearance of reality. Then, I could always state that the pets should signs of Russian engineered bio/chem agents. Could even create a video of the pets dying some horrible death due to the agents. That's more better BS.
Threadzilla , 11 hours ago
And yet, this appears to be a lie as well. An earlier piece in the British news claims the pets were taken to Porton Down for examination and testing soon after the incident. Seems more likely they eliminated evidence and then came up with the cover story about how the animals were "forgotten about" and locked in the house for a month, implying totally unimportant for the investigation. http://metro.co.uk/2018/03/...
JohnA , 12 hours ago
I am truly dis-May-ed!

I hope she and Johnson pay the price for this folly. May it be steep! Very. very steep.

How these two suckered so many nations foolishly into sending diplomats home reflected respect for UK policy toward Russia. These nations will need to think long and hard about following any such UK lead in future.

This week, the US took down the Russian flag flying over Russian real estate in Seattle. Shameful!

Sid Finster -> JohnA , 9 hours ago
Sociopaths care nothing for law and everything for enforcement.
Jack , 4 hours ago
I don't know much about the dynamics of British politics but as a light observer of British news I wonder why Theresa May remains prime minister? She became prime minister after the historic Brexit vote. Promptly takes the country to an election and botches it for the Tories. Then bungles the Brexit negotiations. Runs a floundering government. Now comes up with accusations against the Russians in the Skripal affair with no evidence presented but looking more foolish as her story comes under scrutiny.
DH , 11 hours ago
Thirst, yes, hunger, not so much.
Tony , 11 hours ago
I am reading Taleb's recent book "Skin in the game" which has interesting material about the disconnection between risky behaviors and their consequences in modern USA. He also has a chapter about the mechanics involved in why minority viewpoints in our culture become dominant. It's an interesting read.
Sid Finster , 10 hours ago
http://www.theblogmire.com/...
France74 , 10 hours ago
A french view and laughter.

2 cats and 2 guinea pigs were locked up for 9 days in Skipal's house, in the hope of proving that the Russians are guilty.
When the police reopened the house, they found four bodies. the veterinary faculty is positive, both cats died of starvation. Guinea pigs, some say, began to be worked by hungry cats, accelerating their deaths. Unspeakable bloodshed. In this whole case, it's THE revolting detail, among many others. Poor beasts.

Finally, the Police partially acknowledged their mistake and accused the Russians of not having been completely fair play. Indeed, these thuriferous bastards of Vlad the Impaler had put poison on the OUTDOOR handle of the front door of the house. It's infinitely subtle of these savages. The Brit Police did not suspect what strong part it had to make, the unexpected thwarting its learned calculations. Presumption, again and again. Nevertheless, the detectives are formal: the Russians did the trick well. The evidence is obvious. In this dramatic case, we are not going to make a comparison between insular and continental logic. The hour is too serious for these trifles.
Lots of laughter.

kao_hsien_chih , 11 hours ago
Great. There was once a war for Jenkins' ear. I guess we should now have a nuclear war for Skripals' cat.
English Outsider -> kao_hsien_chih , 9 hours ago
Colonel,

There's talk of a D-Notice covering the Skripal affair. Seems unlikely. All concerned were being sat on quite satisfactorily anyway.

I Looked up D-notices on WIKI -

https://en.wikipedia.org/wi...

Presumably there are bigger guns in the background if information that would really threaten national security or the lives of serving officers is in danger of being released. The D-Notice system itself seems to be a more or less voluntary affair -

https://www.theguardian.com...

It's very difficult in any case to believe that such a notice could have been issued. Can't see why it would be needed. The scripting of the official story on such matters as this seems to be a joint enterprise between the media and the press officers. That's a time-honoured consensus so why would the media need bullying to stay in line?

My personal view on all this is that the No. 10 press officers aren't that good at this new-fangled information stuff. They don't seem to have their hearts in it somehow. Time for them to go back to counting paperclips and for information campaigns to be handled by the experts. The BBC have a proven track record in this field and it's time that was officially recognised.

[May 04, 2018] Atlantic Council Explains Why We Need To Be Propagandized For Our Own Good Zero Hedge

Notable quotes:
"... Internet censorship is getting pretty bad, so best way to keep seeing my daily articles is to get on the mailing list for my website , so you'll get an email notification for everything I publish. My articles and podcasts are entirely reader and listener-funded, so if you enjoyed this piece please consider sharing it around, liking me on Facebook , following my antics on Twitter , checking out my podcast , throwing some money into my hat on Patreon or Paypal , or buying my new book Woke: A Field Guide for Utopia Preppers . ..."
"... People are not turning to the MSM, they are heading straight to: MoA, ZH, PCR, RT... this is where people now turn to find the truth! The two most frequent, each appearing in six out of seven datasets? ZeroHedge and RT. ..."
"... I have never been a Trump supporter, but IMO the one positive I saw back in the elections is that his character would bring about exactly this loss of trust. Not "He's bad and we can't trust him," so much as the fact that he's polarizing, and will fight everyone, and has inadvertently caused a lot of bad people to expose themselves. ..."
May 04, 2018 | www.zerohedge.com

Atlantic Council Explains Why We Need To Be Propagandized For Our Own Good

by Tyler Durden Fri, 05/04/2018 - 19:05 9 SHARES Authored by Caitlin Johnstone via Medium.com,

I sometimes try to get establishment loyalists to explain to me exactly why we're all meant to be terrified of this "Russian propaganda" thing they keep carrying on about. What is the threat, specifically? That it makes the public less willing to go to war with Russia and its allies? That it makes us less trusting of lying, torturing, coup-staging intelligence agencies? Does accidentally catching a glimpse of that green RT logo turn you to stone like Medusa, or melt your face like in Raiders of the Lost Ark ?

"Well, it makes us lose trust in our institutions," is the most common reply.

Okay. So? Where's the threat there? We know for a fact that we've been lied to by those institutions. Iraq isn't just something we imagined . We should be skeptical of claims made by western governments, intelligence agencies and mass media. How specifically is that skepticism dangerous?

me title=

Trying to get answers to such questions from rank-and-file empire loyalists is like pulling teeth, and they are equally lacking in the mass media who are constantly sounding the alarm about Russian propaganda. All I see are stories about Russia funding environmentalists (the horror!), giving a voice to civil rights activists (oh noes!), and retweeting articles supportive of Jeremy Corbyn (think of the children!). At its very most dramatic, this horrifying, dangerous epidemic of Russian propaganda is telling westerners to be skeptical of what they're being told about the Skripal poisoning and the alleged Douma gas attack , both of which do happen to have some very significant causes for skepticism .

When you try to get down to the brass tacks of the actual argument being made and demand specific details about the specific threats we're meant to be worried about, there aren't any to be found. Nobody's been able to tell me what specifically is so dangerous about westerners being exposed to the Russian side of international debates, or of Russians giving a platform to one or both sides of an American domestic debate. Even if every single one of the allegations about Russian bots and disinformation are true ( and they aren't ), where is the actual clear and present danger? No one can say.

No one, that is, except the Atlantic Council.

me title=

In an absolutely jaw-dropping article that you should definitely read in its entirety , Elizabeth Braw took it upon herself to finally answer the question of why Russian propaganda is so dangerous, using the following hypothetical scenario :

What if Russia suddenly announced that its Baltic Fleet had dispatched an armada towards Britain? Would most people greet the news with steely resolve in the knowledge that their governments would know what to do, or would constant Kremlin-influenced reports about the incompetence of British institutions make them conclude that any resistance was pointless?

I mean, wow. Wow! Just wow. Where to even begin with this?

Before I continue, I should note that Braw is a Senior Fellow at the Atlantic Council, the shady NATO-aligned think tank with ties to powerful oligarchs whose name comes up when you look into many of the mainstream anti-Russia narratives, from the DNC hack to the discredited war propaganda firm Bellingcat to Russian trolls to the notorious PropOrNot blacklist publicized by the Washington Post . Her article , published by Defense One , is titled "We Need a NATO for Infowar", and it argues that westerners need to be propagandized by an alliance of western governments for our own good.

Back to the aforementioned excerpt. Braw claims that if Russian propaganda isn't shut down or counteracted, Russia could send a fleet of war ships to attack Britain, and the British people would react unenthusiastically? Wouldn't cheer loudly enough as the British Navy fought the Russians? Would have a defeatist emotional demeanor? What exactly is the argument here?

That's seriously her only attempt to directly address the question of where the actual danger is. Even in the most cartoonishly dramatic hypothetical scenario this Atlantic Council member can possibly imagine, there's still no tangible threat of any kind. Even if Russia was directly attacking the United Kingdom at home, and Russian propaganda had somehow magically dominated all British airwaves and been believed by the entire country, that still wouldn't have any impact on the British military's ability to fight a naval battle. There's literally no extent to which you can inflate this "Russian propaganda" hysteria to turn it into a possible threat to actual people in real life.

me title=

It gets better. Check out this excerpt:

Such responses to disinformation are like swatting flies: time-consuming and ineffective. But not addressing disinformation is ineffective, too. "Western media still have this thing where they try to be completely balanced, so they'll say, 'the Russians say this, but on the other hand the Americans say this is not true,' They end up giving a lie and the truth the same value," noted Toomas Hendrik Ilves, the former president of Estonia.

I just have so many questions. Like, how desperate does a writer have to be for an expert who can lend credibility to their argument that they have to reach all the way over to a former president of Estonia? And on what planet are these people living where Russian narratives are given the same weight as western narratives by western mainstream media? How can I get to this fantastical parallel dimension where western media "try to be completely balanced" and give equal coverage to all perspectives?

Braw argues that, because Russian propaganda is so dangerous (what with the threat of British people having insufficient emotional exuberance during a possible naval battle and all), what is required is a "NATO of infowar", an alliance of western state media that is tasked with combatting Russian counter-narratives. Because, in the strange Dungeons & Dragons fantasy fairy world in which Braw penned her article, this isn't already happening.

And of course, here in the real world, it is already happening. As I wrote recently , mainstream media outlets have been going out of their minds churning out attack editorials on anyone who questions the establishment narrative about what happened in Douma. A BBC reporter recently admonished a retired British naval officer for voicing skepticism of what we're being told about Syria on the grounds that it might "muddy the waters" of the "information war" that is being fought against Russia. All day, every day, western mass media are pummeling the public with stories about how awful and scary Russians are and how everything they say is a lie.

This is because western mass media outlets are owned by western plutocrats, and those plutocrats have built their empires upon a status quo that they have a vested interest in preserving, often to the point where they will form alliances with defense and intelligence agencies to do so. They hire executives and editors who subscribe to a pro-establishment worldview, who in turn hire journalists who subscribe to a pro-establishment worldview, and in that way they ensure that all plutocrat-owned media outlets are advancing pro-plutocrat agendas.

me title=

The western empire is ruled by a loose transnational alliance of plutocrats and secretive government agencies. That loose alliance is your real government, and that government has the largest state media network in the history of civilization. The mass media propaganda machine of the western empire makes RT look like your grandmother's Facebook wall.

In that way, we are being propagandized constantly by the people who really rule us. All this panic about Russian propaganda doesn't exist because our dear leaders have a problem with propaganda, it exists because they believe only they should be allowed to propagandize us.

And, unlike Russian propaganda, western establishment propaganda actually does pose a direct threat to us. By using mass media to manipulate the ways we think and vote, our true rulers can persuade us to consent to crushing austerity measures and political impotence while the oligarchs grow richer and medicine money is spent on bombs. When we should all be revolting against an oppressive Orwellian oligarchy, we are instead lulled to sleep by those same oligarchs and their hired talking heads lying to us about freedom and democracy.

Russian propaganda is not dangerous. Having access to other ways of looking at global geopolitics is not dangerous. What absolutely is dangerous is a vast empire concerning itself with the information and ideas that its citizenry have access to. Get your rapey, manipulative fingers out of our minds, please.

If our dear leaders are so worried about our losing faith in our institutions, they shouldn't be concerning themselves with manipulating us into trusting them, they should be making those institutions more trustworthy.

Don't manipulate better, be better. The fact that an influential think tank is now openly advocating the former over the latter should concern us all.

* * *

Internet censorship is getting pretty bad, so best way to keep seeing my daily articles is to get on the mailing list for my website , so you'll get an email notification for everything I publish. My articles and podcasts are entirely reader and listener-funded, so if you enjoyed this piece please consider sharing it around, liking me on Facebook , following my antics on Twitter , checking out my podcast , throwing some money into my hat on Patreon or Paypal , or buying my new book Woke: A Field Guide for Utopia Preppers .

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EuroPox -> Bitchface-KILLAH Fri, 05/04/2018 - 19:17 Permalink

BBC, CNN, etc. - they have already lost!

This is a great chart - it shows websites linked from 'false flag' tweets:

https://twitter.com/conspirator0/status/987147903453073409

People are not turning to the MSM, they are heading straight to: MoA, ZH, PCR, RT... this is where people now turn to find the truth! The two most frequent, each appearing in six out of seven datasets? ZeroHedge and RT.

Well done ZH!

techpriest -> Bitchface-KILLAH Fri, 05/04/2018 - 19:19 Permalink

"Well, it makes us lose trust in our institutions," is the most common reply.

I have never been a Trump supporter, but IMO the one positive I saw back in the elections is that his character would bring about exactly this loss of trust. Not "He's bad and we can't trust him," so much as the fact that he's polarizing, and will fight everyone, and has inadvertently caused a lot of bad people to expose themselves.

Why should you trust people who think they have the right to take whatever amount of your money they want, use it for any purpose they want, and also who believe they have the right to harass, torture, stalk, or kill whoever they want, on any pretext they feel like thinking up?

navy62802 Fri, 05/04/2018 - 19:17 Permalink

The Atlantic Council is just another tentacle of the Soros Squid. The man should have been dealt with as a Nazi collaborator in the aftermath of World War 2. Unfortunately for humanity, he evaded accountability for his crimes against humanity during the war.

[May 04, 2018] Media Use Disinformation To Accuse Russia Of Spreading Such by b

Highly recommended!
Notable quotes:
"... A McClatchy journalist investigated further and came to the same conclusion as I did. The 'leak' to the New York Times was disinformation. ..."
"... Russia has not pinned the Novichok to Sweden or the Czech Republic. It said, correctly, that several countries produced Novichok. Russia did not blame the UK for the 'nerve gas attack' in Syria. Russia says that there was no gas attack in Douma. ..."
"... The claims of Russian disinformation these authors make to not hold up to scrutiny. Meanwhile there pieces themselves are full of lies, distortions and, yes, disinformation. ..."
"... Wait for an outbreak of hostilities on the Ukraine-Donbass front shortly before the beginning of the World Cup competition which is as internationally important as the Olympic Games -- as they did in 2014 with Maidan and 2016 with the Sochi Winter Olympics drug uproar, the CIA will create chaos that will take the emphasis off any Russian success, since as to them, anything negative regarding Russia is a positive for them. ..."
"... No traces of chemical weapons have been found in Douma. This means that not only the US/UK/French airstrikes were illegal under international law but even their political justification was inherently flawed. Similarly, in the Salisbury affair, no evidence of Russian involvement has been presented, while the two myths on which the British case was built (the Russian origin of the chemical substance used and the existence of proof of Russian responsibility) have been shattered. ..."
"... Given the lack of facts, the Tory leadership seems to be adopting a truly Orwellian logic: that the main proof of Russian responsibility are the Russian denials! It is hard to see how they will be able to sell this to their international partners. Self-respecting countries of G20 would not be willing to risk their reputation. ..."
"... The detail of b's analysis that stands out to me as especially significant and brilliant is his demolition of the Guardian's reuse of the Merkel "quote." ..."
"... Related to the above, consider the nature of the recently christened thought-crime, "whataboutism." The crime may be defined as follows: "Whataboutism" is the attempt to understand a truth asserted by propaganda by way of relation to other truths it has asserted contemporaneous with or prior to this one. It is to ask, "What about this *other* truth? Does this *other* truth affect our understanding of *this* truth? And if so, how does it?" ..."
"... Whataboutism seems to deny that each asserted truth stands on its own, and has no essential relation to any other past, present, or future asserted truth. ..."
"... 1984, anyone? ..."
"... The absurd story that the OPCW says there was a 100gm/100mg who knows which on the door and other sites is just so stupid its painful. ..."
"... Presumably the Skripals touch the cutlery, plates and wine glasses in the restaurant, so why weren't the staff there infected as they must have had to pick up the plates etc after the meal. Even the door to the entrance of the restaurant should be affected as they would have to push it open, thus leaving the chemical for other people to touch. Nope, nothing in this stupid story adds up and the OPCW can't even get the amounts of the chemical right. ..."
"... Biggest problem with the world today is lazy insouciant citizens. ..."
"... One very important point Lavrov made was the anti-Russian group consists of a very small number of nations representing a small fraction of humanity; ..."
"... while they have some economic and military clout, it's possible for the rest of the world's nations to sideline them and get on with the important business of forming a genuine Multipolar World Order, which is what the UN and its Charter envisioned. ..."
"... Anything that may not confirm to the 'truth' as prescribed from above must be overwhelmed with an onslaught of more lies or, if that does not work, be discredited as 'enemy' disinformation. ..."
"... Yes, exactly. The Western hegemony, i.e. the true "Axis of Evil" led by the US, and including the EU and non-Western allies, have invented the Perpetual Big Lie™. ..."
"... Witnesses? They're either confederates, dupes, or terrified by coercion. Evidence and/or technical analysis? All faked! A nominally reliable party, e.g. the president of the Czech Republic, makes statements that undermine the Big Lie Nexus? Again-- he's either been bought off or frightened into making such inconvenient claims. Or he's just a mischievous liar. ..."
"... And, as I seemingly never get tired of pointing out, the Perpetual Big Lie™ strategy arose, and succeeds, because the "natural enemies" of authoritarian government overreach have been coerced or co-opted to a fare-thee-well. So mass-media venues, and even supposedly independent technical and scientific organizations, are part of the Perpetual Big Lie™ apparatus. ..."
"... Putting Kudrin -- an opponent of de-dollarization and an upholder of the Washington Consensus -- in charge of Russia's international outreach would be equal to putting Bill Clinton in charge of a girls' school. ..."
"... In the Guardian I only read the comments, never the article. Here, I read both. That is the difference between propaganda and good reporting. ..."
May 04, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

The Grauniad is slipping deeper into the disinformation business: Revealed: UK's push to strengthen anti-Russia alliance is the headline of a page one piece which reveals exactly nothing. There is no secret lifted and no one was discomforted by a questioning journalist.

Like other such pieces it uses disinformation to accuse Russia of spreading such.

The main 'revelation' is stenographed from a British government official. Some quotes from the usual anti-Russian propagandists were added. Dubious or false 'western' government claims are held up as truth. That Russia does not endorse them is proof for Russian mischievousness and its 'disinformation'.

The opener:

The UK will use a series of international summits this year to call for a comprehensive strategy to combat Russian disinformation and urge a rethink over traditional diplomatic dialogue with Moscow, following the Kremlin's aggressive campaign of denials over the use of chemical weapons in the UK and Syria.
...
"The foreign secretary regards Russia's response to Douma and Salisbury as a turning point and thinks there is international support to do more," a Whitehall official said. "The areas the UK are most likely to pursue are countering Russian disinformation and finding a mechanism to enforce accountability for the use of chemical weapons."

There is a mechanism to enforce accountability for the use of chemical weapons. It is the Chemical Weapon Convention and the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW). It was the British government which at first rejected the use of these instruments during the Skripal incident:

Early involvement of the OPCW, as demanded by Russia, was resisted by the British government. Only on March 14, ten days after the incident happened and two days after Prime Minister Theresa may had made accusations against Russia, did the British government invite the OPCW. Only on March 19, 15 days after the incident happen did the OPCW technical team arrive and took blood samples.

Now back to the Guardian disinformation:

In making its case to foreign ministries, the UK is arguing that Russian denials over Salisbury and Douma reveal a state uninterested in cooperating to reach a common understanding of the truth , but instead using both episodes to try systematically to divide western electorates and sow doubt.

A 'common understanding of the truth' is an interesting term. What is the truth? Whatever the British government claims? It accused Russia of the Skripal incident a mere eight days after it happened. Now, two month later, it admits that it does not know who poisoned the Skripals:

Police and intelligence agencies have failed so far to identify the individual or individuals who carried out the nerve agent attack in Salisbury, the UK's national security adviser has disclosed.

Do the Brits know where the alleged Novichok poison came from? Unless they produced it themselves they likely have no idea. The Czech Republic just admitted that it made small doses of a Novichok nerve agent for testing purposes. Others did too.

Back to the Guardian :

British politicians are not alone in claiming Russia's record of mendacity is not a personal trait of Putin's, but a government-wide strategy that makes traditional diplomacy ineffective.

Angela Merkel, the German chancellor, famously came off one lengthy phone call with Putin – she had more than 40 in a year – to say he lived in a different world.

No, Merkel never said that. An Obama administration flunky planted that in the New York Times :

Chancellor Angela Merkel of Germany told Mr. Obama by telephone on Sunday that after speaking with Mr. Putin she was not sure he was in touch with reality, people briefed on the call said. "In another world," she said.

When that claim was made in March 2014 we were immediately suspicious of it:

This does not sound like typically Merkel but rather strange for her. I doubt that she said that the way the "people briefed on the call" told it to the Times stenographer. It is rather an attempt to discredit Merkel and to make it more difficult for her to find a solution with Russia outside of U.S. control.

A day later the German government denied (ger) that Merkel ever said such (my translation):

The chancellery is unhappy about the report in the New York Times. Merkel by no means meant to express that Putin behaved irrational. In fact she told Obama that Putin has a different perspective about the Crimea [than Obama has].

A McClatchy journalist investigated further and came to the same conclusion as I did. The 'leak' to the New York Times was disinformation.

That disinformation, spread by the Obama administration but immediately exposed as false, is now held up as proof by Patrick Wintour, the Diplomatic editor of the Guardian , that Russia uses disinformation and that Putin is a naughty man.

The British Defense Minister Gavin Williamson wants journalists to enter the UK reserve forces to help with the creation of propaganda:

He said army recruitment should be about "looking to different people who maybe think, as a journalist: 'What are my skills in terms of how are they relevant to the armed forces?'

Patrick Wintour seems to be a qualified candidate.

Or maybe he should join the NATO for Information Warfare the Atlantic Council wants to create to further disinform about those damned Russkies:

What we need now is a cross-border defense alliance against disinformation -- call it Communications NATO. Such an alliance is, in fact, nearly as important as its military counterpart.

Like the Guardian piece above writer of the NATO propaganda lobby Atlantic Council makes claims of Russian disinformation that do not hold up to the slightest test:

By pinning the Novichok nerve agent on Sweden or the Czech Republic, or blaming the UK for the nerve gas attack in Syria, the Kremlin sows confusion among our populations and makes us lose trust in our institutions.

Russia has not pinned the Novichok to Sweden or the Czech Republic. It said, correctly, that several countries produced Novichok. Russia did not blame the UK for the 'nerve gas attack' in Syria. Russia says that there was no gas attack in Douma.

The claims of Russian disinformation these authors make to not hold up to scrutiny. Meanwhile there pieces themselves are full of lies, distortions and, yes, disinformation.

The bigger aim behind all these activities, demanding a myriad of new organizations to propagandize against Russia, is to introduce a strict control over information within 'western' societies.

Anything that may not confirm to the 'truth' as prescribed from above must be overwhelmed with an onslaught of more lies or, if that does not work, be discredited as 'enemy' disinformation.

That scheme will be used against anyone who deviates from the ordered norm. You dislike that pipeline in your backyard? You must be falling for Russian trolls or maybe you yourself are an agent of a foreign power. Social Security? The Russians like that. It is a disinformation thing. You better forget about it.


c1ue , May 4, 2018 2:27:27 PM | 1

Excellent article, in an ongoing run of great journalism.
I am curious - have you read this? https://ratical.org/ratville/JFK/ST/
It purports to be a book by an American military man intimately familiar with the covert ops portion of the US government. The internal Kafka-esque dynamics described certainly feel true.
Mike Maloney , May 4, 2018 2:44:12 PM | 3
One of the reasons newspapers are getting worse is the economics. They aren't really viable anymore. Their future is as some form of government sanctioned oligopoly. Two national papers -- a "left" and a "right" -- and then a handful of regional papers. All spouting the same neoliberal, neoconservative chicanery.
CD Waller , May 4, 2018 2:57:20 PM | 4
Genuine journalist Matt Taibbi warned of this sort of branding of disparate views as enemy a month ago. He was also correct. Evil and insidious. The enemy of a free society.
chet380 , May 4, 2018 2:58:22 PM | 5
Wait for an outbreak of hostilities on the Ukraine-Donbass front shortly before the beginning of the World Cup competition which is as internationally important as the Olympic Games -- as they did in 2014 with Maidan and 2016 with the Sochi Winter Olympics drug uproar, the CIA will create chaos that will take the emphasis off any Russian success, since as to them, anything negative regarding Russia is a positive for them.
WJ , May 4, 2018 3:02:57 PM | 6
The later history of the 20th century will one day be read as the triumph and normalization of the Nazi state through liberal democratic capitalism.
Laguerre , May 4, 2018 3:07:19 PM | 7
I agree that it's difficult to see how the drive to renew the Cold War is going to be stopped. I presume that, with the exception of certain NeoCon circles, there isn't a desire for Hot War. Certainly not in the British sources you quote. Britain wouldn't want Hot War with Russia. It's all a question of going to the limit for internal consumption. Do a 1984, in order to keep the population in-line.
james , May 4, 2018 3:11:05 PM | 8
thanks b... i can't understand how any intelligent thinking person would read the guardian, let alone something like the huff post, and etc. etc... why? the propaganda money that pays for the white helmets, certainly goes to these outlets as well..

the uk have gone completely nuts! i guess it comes with reading the guardian, although, in fairness, all british media seems very skewed - sky news, bbc, and etc. etc.

it does appear as though Patrick Wintour is on Gavin Williamson's propaganda bandwagon/payroll already... in reading the comments and articles at craig murrays site, i have become more familiar with just how crazy things are in the uk.. his latest article freedom no more sums it up well... throw the uk msm in the trash can... it is for all intensive purposes, done..

mk , May 4, 2018 3:31:41 PM | 9
Meanwhile, OPCW chief Uzumcu seems to have been pranked again, this time by his own staff (this is how I interpret it):

He claimed that the amount of Novichok found was about 100 g and therefore more than research laboratories would produce, i.e. this was weaponized Novichok.

http://www.startribune.com/large-dose-of-nerve-agent-was-used-in-spy-s-poisoning-watchdog-says/481687061/

However, the story is being retracted right now because OPCW staff says it was only 100 mg .

Uzumcu looks like a fool.

b , May 4, 2018 3:49:03 PM | 10
The Russian embassy in the UK must be reading MoA. It just now tweeted this press release: Embassy press officer comments on the Guardian article concerning a new British anti-Russian strategy
Q: What is our reaction to the Guardian article on a "comprehensive strategy" to "deepen the alliance against Russia" to be pursued by the UK Government at international forums?

A: Judging by the publication, the main current challenge for Whitehall is to preserve the anti-Russian coalition that the Conservatives tried to build after the Salisbury incident. This task is challenging indeed. The "fusion doctrine" promoted by the national security apparatus has led to the Western bloc taking hasty decisions that, as life has shown, were not based on any facts.

No traces of chemical weapons have been found in Douma. This means that not only the US/UK/French airstrikes were illegal under international law but even their political justification was inherently flawed. Similarly, in the Salisbury affair, no evidence of Russian involvement has been presented, while the two myths on which the British case was built (the Russian origin of the chemical substance used and the existence of proof of Russian responsibility) have been shattered.

Given the lack of facts, the Tory leadership seems to be adopting a truly Orwellian logic: that the main proof of Russian responsibility are the Russian denials! It is hard to see how they will be able to sell this to their international partners. Self-respecting countries of G20 would not be willing to risk their reputation.

karlof1 , May 4, 2018 3:52:31 PM | 11
Hmmm... My reply to c1ue went sideways it seems. Yes, The late Mr. Prouty's book's the real deal and the website hosting his very rare book is a rare gem itself. Click the JFK at page top left to be transported to that sites archive of writings about his murder. The very important essay by Prouty's there too.
WJ , May 4, 2018 3:53:30 PM | 12
The detail of b's analysis that stands out to me as especially significant and brilliant is his demolition of the Guardian's reuse of the Merkel "quote."

This one detail tells us so much about how propaganda works, and about how it can be defeated. Successful propaganda both depends upon and seeks to accelerate the erasure of historical memory. This is because its truths are always changing to suit the immediate needs of the state. None of its truths can be understood historically. b makes the connection between the documented but forgotten past "truth" of Merkel's quote and its present reincarnation in the Guardian, and this is really all he *needs* to do. What b points out is something quite simple; yet the ability to do this very simple thing is becoming increasingly rare and its exercise increasingly difficult to achieve. It is for me the virtue that makes b's analysis uniquely indispensable.

Related to the above, consider the nature of the recently christened thought-crime, "whataboutism." The crime may be defined as follows: "Whataboutism" is the attempt to understand a truth asserted by propaganda by way of relation to other truths it has asserted contemporaneous with or prior to this one. It is to ask, "What about this *other* truth? Does this *other* truth affect our understanding of *this* truth? And if so, how does it?"

Whataboutism seems to deny that each asserted truth stands on its own, and has no essential relation to any other past, present, or future asserted truth.

Jose Garcia , May 4, 2018 3:56:03 PM | 13
1984, anyone?
john wilson , May 4, 2018 4:03:04 PM | 14
The absurd story that the OPCW says there was a 100gm/100mg who knows which on the door and other sites is just so stupid its painful. This implies that the Skripals both closed the door together and then went off on their day spreading the stuff everywhere, yet no one else was contaminated (apart from the fantasy policeman).

Presumably the Skripals touch the cutlery, plates and wine glasses in the restaurant, so why weren't the staff there infected as they must have had to pick up the plates etc after the meal. Even the door to the entrance of the restaurant should be affected as they would have to push it open, thus leaving the chemical for other people to touch. Nope, nothing in this stupid story adds up and the OPCW can't even get the amounts of the chemical right.

ken , May 4, 2018 4:03:13 PM | 15
The problem is,,, most know it's all BS but find it 'easier' to believe or at most ignore, as then there is no responsibility to 'do something'. Biggest problem with the world today is lazy insouciant citizens. (Yes,,, I'm a PCR reader) :))
karlof1 , May 4, 2018 4:05:15 PM | 16
b @10--

Did you catch the Lavrov interview I linked to on previous Yemen thread? As you might imagine, the verbiage used is quite similar. One very important point Lavrov made was the anti-Russian group consists of a very small number of nations representing a small fraction of humanity; and that while they have some economic and military clout, it's possible for the rest of the world's nations to sideline them and get on with the important business of forming a genuine Multipolar World Order, which is what the UN and its Charter envisioned.

I won't omit linking to Craig Murray's conclusion :

"I cannot sufficiently express my outrage that Leeds City Council feels it is right to ban a meeting with very distinguished speakers, because it is questioning the government and establishment line on Syria. Freedom of speech really is dead."

Ort , May 4, 2018 4:22:35 PM | 17
Anything that may not confirm to the 'truth' as prescribed from above must be overwhelmed with an onslaught of more lies or, if that does not work, be discredited as 'enemy' disinformation.
_______________________________________

Yes, exactly. The Western hegemony, i.e. the true "Axis of Evil" led by the US, and including the EU and non-Western allies, have invented the Perpetual Big Lie™.

This isn't a new insight, but it's worth repeating. It struck me anew while I was listening to a couple of UK "journalists" hectoring OPCW Representative Shulgin, and directing scurrilous and provocative innuendo disguised as "questions" to Mr. Shulgin and the Syrian witnesses testifying during his presentation.

It flashed upon me that there is no longer a reasonable expectation that the Perpetual Big Liars must eventually abandon, much less confess, their heinous mendacity. Just as B points out, there are no countervailing facts, evidence, rebuttals, theories, or explanations that can't be countered with further iterations of Big Lies, however offensively incredible and absurd.

Witnesses? They're either confederates, dupes, or terrified by coercion. Evidence and/or technical analysis? All faked! A nominally reliable party, e.g. the president of the Czech Republic, makes statements that undermine the Big Lie Nexus? Again-- he's either been bought off or frightened into making such inconvenient claims. Or he's just a mischievous liar.

And, as I seemingly never get tired of pointing out, the Perpetual Big Lie™ strategy arose, and succeeds, because the "natural enemies" of authoritarian government overreach have been coerced or co-opted to a fare-thee-well. So mass-media venues, and even supposedly independent technical and scientific organizations, are part of the Perpetual Big Lie™ apparatus.

Even as the Big Liars reach a point of diminishing returns, they respond with more of the same. I wish I were more confident that this reprehensible practice will eventually fail due to the excess of malignant hubris; I'm not holding my breath.

Passer by , May 4, 2018 4:24:44 PM | 18

Is Putin capitulating? Pro US Alexei Kudrin could join new government to negotiate "end of sanctions" with the West.

Former finance minister Alexei Kudrin will be brought back to "mend fences with the West" in order to revive Russia's economy. Kudrin has repeatedly said that unless Russia makes her political system more democratic and ends its confrontation with Europe and the United States, she will not be able to achieve economic growth. Russia's fifth-columnists were exalted: "If Kudrin joined the administration or government, it would indicate that they have agreed on a certain agenda of change, including in foreign policy, because without change in foreign policy, reforms are simply impossible in Russia," said Yevgeny Gontmakher . . . who works with a civil society organization set up by Mr. Kudrin. "It would be a powerful message, because Kudrin is the only one in the top echelons with whom they will talk in the west and towards whom there is a certain trust."

Putting Kudrin -- an opponent of de-dollarization and an upholder of the Washington Consensus -- in charge of Russia's international outreach would be equal to putting Bill Clinton in charge of a girls' school.

It would mark Putin's de facto collapse as a leader. We shall know very soon. Either way, if anyone wondered what the approach to Russia would be from Bolton and Pompeo, we now know: they will play very hard ball with Putin, regardless of what he does (or doesn't do), and with carefree readiness to risk an eventual snap.

https://archive.is/1Ynms#selection-1641.0-1641.66

Formerly T-Bear , May 4, 2018 4:57:25 PM | 21
@ 20 Laguerre

Certainly looks like @ 18 is a fine example of what b is presenting.

A good way to extract one's self from the propaganda is to refuse using whatever meme the disinformation uses, e.g. that Sergei Skripal was a double agent -- that is not a known, only a convenient suggestion.

Military intelligence is far better described as military information needed for some project or mission. Not surreptitious cloak and dagger spying. This is not to say Sergei Scripal was a British spy for which he was convicted, stripped of rank and career and exiled through a spy swap. To continue using Sergei Scripal was a double agent only repeats and verifies the disinformation meme and all the framing that goes with it. Find some alternative to what MSM produces that does not embed truthiness to their efforts.

Peter Schmidt , May 4, 2018 5:08:52 PM | 23
In the Guardian I only read the comments, never the article. Here, I read both. That is the difference between propaganda and good reporting.
Emily Dickinson , May 4, 2018 5:09:00 PM | 24
@Michael Weddington 19

I realize it's from one of the biggest propaganda organs in the world... take this New York Times report of the OPCW's retraction with a 100 grams -- 100mg? -- of salt:

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/05/04/world/europe/opcw-skripal-attack.html

karlof1 , May 4, 2018 5:12:57 PM | 25
Passer by @18--

This same narrative was put forth in 2016 and is just as false now as then. As I posted on Yemen thread earlier, Putin on 5 May is likely to announce the formation of a Stavka.

Kudrin is a neoliberal and as such is an enemy of humanity and will never again be allowed to hold a position of power within Russia's government. Let him emigrate to the West like his fellow parasites and teach junk economics at some likeminded university.

jalp , May 4, 2018 5:30:35 PM | 26
Anyone seen this reported elsewhere? https://www.rt.com/news/425810-white-helmets-us-funding-freeze/

[May 01, 2018] I'm astonished that anyone would think that Putin doesn't understand the US or what is going on in the Syria theater.

Notable quotes:
"... Israel is annoying everyone in the Syrian theater. Note well that the scale of impact is in the "annoying" range. Kind of like the "bluster" of the US but even more constrained by forces on the ground all around it. ..."
"... No one in the region believes that Russia or Iran have failed at anything. Observers simply hope they have the good fortune to see the revenge, knowing that they may never know how Iran counters - if in fact it ever does. ..."
"... Russia is working to move the final resolution of Syria into political methods rather than military - this is very important to keep in mind with all appraisals of the situation. It's time to repeat that Russia is working for peace, not to win battles. The two efforts are very different, and create different tactics. ..."
"... I echo that feeling. The explosions in Hama and Aleppo, for which there still remains no official report, have kicked up rampant speculation and many strange comments on this site. ..."
"... The idea that Russia is all bluster, has no clue what's going on, has abandoned Syria, or that the whole Russian exercise is due to Putin "begging to be admitted in the Western Club," flies in the face of facts on the ground. ..."
"... Putin is where he says he is. He was already part of the club (G8) and he left because the club was filled with jackasses. Putin is forming his own club, with Xi. ..."
May 01, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

Grieved | Apr 30, 2018 9:24:11 PM | 107

Thanks to posters for links to Garrie on a possible "white hat" false flag and to Magnier for a plum-rich storytelling of how Israel is on the losing end of a shift in the balance of power, something that as yet it cannot admit to itself.

Israel is annoying everyone in the Syrian theater. Note well that the scale of impact is in the "annoying" range. Kind of like the "bluster" of the US but even more constrained by forces on the ground all around it.

I'm astonished that anyone would think that Putin doesn't understand the US or what is going on in the Syria theater. Russian commanders are in constant contact with all forces that bear on the situation, including those of the US, and Israel. And Putin has spelled out on numerous occasions - in interviews, from the Valdai Club, from his remarks directly to journalists and his people - what the empire is doing.

No one has lost face in this latest event, except Israel with Netanyahu's inane presentation, currently being called out as empty by Europeans.

No one in the region believes that Russia or Iran have failed at anything. Observers simply hope they have the good fortune to see the revenge, knowing that they may never know how Iran counters - if in fact it ever does.

Russia is working to move the final resolution of Syria into political methods rather than military - this is very important to keep in mind with all appraisals of the situation. It's time to repeat that Russia is working for peace, not to win battles. The two efforts are very different, and create different tactics.

With each situation that Russia confronts, from military attacks to diplomatic property seizures, Russia looks for the peace dividend. Armchair punters are watching one horse race, while Russia is looking decades down the road and asking what it takes to create stability that endures, out of each situation.

Don Bacon , Apr 30, 2018 10:13:44 PM | 113
@Grieved 107

Yes, some don't appreciate the giant step that Putin took moving into Syria to oppose The Leader Of The Free World™ with its president Obama threatening that Russians would soon be going home in body-bags.

But Russia survived and endured, and made a major point that right can win over might.

The strategy was brave and the tactics were revolutionary, including the busing of combatants away from combat. Credit where credit is due, Putin is a winner at home and abroad, as in Syria (and Crimea, BTW).

Activist Potato | May 1, 2018 1:04:41 AM | 123

"I'm astonished that anyone would think that Putin doesn't understand the US or what is going on in the Syria theater." Posted by: Grieved | Apr 30, 2018 9:24:11 PM | 107

I echo that feeling. The explosions in Hama and Aleppo, for which there still remains no official report, have kicked up rampant speculation and many strange comments on this site.

The idea that Russia is all bluster, has no clue what's going on, has abandoned Syria, or that the whole Russian exercise is due to Putin "begging to be admitted in the Western Club," flies in the face of facts on the ground.

Putin is where he says he is. He was already part of the club (G8) and he left because the club was filled with jackasses. Putin is forming his own club, with Xi.

Castellio | May 1, 2018 1:14:02 AM | 125

Putin sees the west much more clearly than the west sees him.

[Apr 30, 2018] They got Putin by the balls with russia histing the Would Cup or something more complex is playing out in Syria and Iran

Apr 30, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

Passer by , Apr 30, 2018 3:53:05 PM | 45

Putin blocking the delivery of S-300 in Syria against the demands of the Russian Military

This was discussed by Putin with General Staff chief Valery Gerasimov and Defence Minister Sergei Shoigu on April 20. The Russian military, they told the President, want the go-ahead to deploy S-300 missile batteries to cover Syrian and Iranian forces against US and Israeli attack from the air. They believe Israeli threats to attack the S-300 batteries as soon as they are operational are a bluff which Russia must call if Russia's positions in Syria, and Iran itself, are not to come under subsequent attack from the American-Israeli combination. Testing the threat in Syria, they argue, is the less threatening, less costly option than encouraging the Americans and Israelis to prepare their
offensive against Iran. Putin won't agree.

To respond to Putin's reluctance, the General Staff and the Defence Ministry have devised a step short of the S-300, but with potentially enough defensive power to intercept or deter American and Israeli air attacks. This is the deployment of more Russian electronic warfare systems with the capacity to jam the surveillance, targeting, fire control and command signals on which the attackers rely. It is the Samson Haircut option – deprive the giant of control of his firepower, blind him.

Silently, Putin has decided to protect Deripaska; not to call the US attack on Rusal an act of war; and to test the Americans with an offer of armistice. International bankers close to Russian business believe it is a Russian illusion that an armistice with the US can be anything but temporary; pursuing it is a miscalculation of US intentions, the sources add. They warn that new attacks will come.

http://johnhelmer.net/the-samson-haircut-option-one-step-before-russia-opens-fire-on-american-israeli-forces/#more-19116

Putin Reportedly "Ready For Deep Concessions", Seeks Deal With Trump

He understands Russia can't compete with the West economically and he doesn't plan to go to war with the West.

Kremlin has ordered officials to curb their anti-U.S. rhetoric.

Putin's decision explains why lawmakers Monday suddenly pulled a draft law that would've imposed sweeping counter-sanctions on U.S. companies, two of the people said.

https://www.zerohedge.com/news/2018-04-18/putin-reportedly-ready-deep-concessions-seeks-deal-trump

Russian Senators to soften counter sanctions against US

RBC: Russian senators to water down Moscow's response to US sanctions. Two Federation Council members told the newspaper that the final version of the amendments to the 'anti-sanctions' bill initiated by State Duma Speaker Vyacheslav Volodin and leaders of all parliamentary factions, will be "quite mild."

http://tass.com/pressreview/1001647

Russia not to take action against US diplomatic property - diplomat

More:
http://tass.com/politics/1002504

frances , Apr 30, 2018 4:02:55 PM | 48
Passer by | Apr 30, 2018 3:53:05 PM | 45
I believe Putin is playing for time. The March 1 weaponry display didn't include production numbers but I think it is a safe bet they don't exist in sufficient numbers..yet.

So US&Co have a small window left to create hell on earth for as many as possible and they IMO will hit Iran before the football playoffs that Putin so wants to go smoothly.

I would assume Iran is/was responsible for Iranian defense of these sites so I am surprised they didn't respond, maybe there was no time?? Couldn't Russia have warned them?? And does anyone know what weaponry the Russians brought into Syria recently under cover of smoke?

imoverit , Apr 30, 2018 4:20:46 PM | 55
@ frances

I think the World Cup is playing a big role in the decision making as you have said. There is a lot at stake: investments already made and international exposure also. I can't wait for it to be finished so we can get back to war !! (sarc)

karlof1 , Apr 30, 2018 4:45:37 PM | 61
Et al--

Russia began its Syria intervention with an S-400 deployed in Latakia and has introduced several more since, one being in Sept 2017 . Syria also has the BUK-M2E AA system and the Pantsir to go with its older and upgraded S-200 systems along with who knows what else. Just what was off loaded from Russian supply vessels under the cover of smoke last week (don't know if such veiling's continuing)? My guess is more AA systems of the type causing Zionists on both sides of Atlantic to freakout.

As for the Zionists attacking Iranian military bases, those Iran uses in Syria are joint-use with Syria regardless of what's said by Zionists; so, any such attack will need to be aimed at Iran proper. The consequences for the region would be horrible--particularly for Zionists and Saudis: Dimona would be leveled as would Saudi oil infrastructure. The fallout and other pollution would be appalling. If the Zionists want to keep their skin, they'll arrest Nutty before he gets his get-out-of-jail war started.

Zionists know they've lost and are contained and constrained, so they're moving into desperation mode. Too bad they lack the courage to put a pistol to their head and pull the trigger.

Jayhawk2018 , Apr 30, 2018 6:03:45 PM | 78
Russia could easily give Syria the s300 system. But Putin clearly does not want to hurt his buddy Netanyahu's feelings. They are always so chummy you can see there is a mutual respect between them whenever they meet. Russia is only in Syria to fight terrorism. They will obviously not confront Israel and go to war, and that is of course, understandable. But whats even worse is that they seem to refuse to give Syria/Iran the means to defend themselves from Israeli attacks.

If its true Putin is blocking the delivery himself against the request of the Russian Army, that is even more shameful. I guess in terms of preventing a World War, it is good that Putin is chummy with Netanyahu. However a regional war is looking very likely at this point. Unfortunately the only way Israel will learn is by being smashed in the teeth. I'm sure in time Syria, Iran or Hezbollah will have to teach them another lesson.

Pft , Apr 30, 2018 6:50:46 PM | 81
A lot of Russian oligarchs are dual Israeli or American -Russian citizens. Even in the Soviet era while they provided just enough support to prevent the Arab countries from being totally defeated they stopped short of giving them enough to threaten Israel or defeat them. Putin has made peace with a number of the oligarchs that remain in Russia but he has to take care not to get the pro Israeli -US faction riled or threaten their overseas financial interests which Trump has threatened to do with sanctions targeted at the oligarchs

So Russia will prevent Syria from being totally overwhelmed but concede the US the northeast oil rich fields and Israel gets the gas fields in Golan. They will allow isolated missile attacks and bombing by US and Israel that both resort to for show to appease their hawks. In the meantime if Assad has an accident or gets overthrown due to economic reasons then israel and US may get their puppet state and Russia/Iran may exit. Then on to Lebanon and Iran.

Wars are not fought to be won anymore. They are fought to be long lasting. Perpetual War Abroad is Peace at Home

[Apr 29, 2018] Putin and Russia bashing is indeed perplexing. But it is not universal

Notable quotes:
"... BraaaaVO! Killer post....Ironically, at age 57, I NOW do what Russians TOLD ME they did over 30 years ago: Whatever I read in the papers or hear from the U.S. gov, I automatically believe the OPPOSITE! ..."
Apr 29, 2018 | russia-insider.com

Dan Good 4 years ago ,

The Russia bashing is indeed perplexing. But it is not universal. One explanation is that Americans are afraid of the rivalry. Also Americans have been brought up with a negative imagine of "KGB" and it is impossible to shake this. Russia would love to be part of Europe and increase ties and business. Europe is game; but not USA. It represents a challenge to its own supremacy. I think this is the underlying problem. Putin came out of nowhere, as many of the "Putin Videos" show. His first priority was to rebuild the morale of the Russian army and to do this he picked on Chechnia. Perhaps today he would do things differently. He also turned on many oligarchs who had helped him. But he did this because he did not ask nor want their "help" which he considered self-serving; they wanted to control him, not the other way round. He may regret having been too hard on some (Boris Bereshovski for instance) but it had to be done. All these things played into the hands of the anti-Russians in US. One thing is sure. Neither Russia nor Putin had anything to do with the riots in Maidan which are the root cause of all the disasters occurring in that country. If Putin "took advantage" of the break-down in Kiev to retake Crimea so much to his credit. It was certainly not "planned". The State Dept got faked out. Now they are licking their wounds by Putin bashing day in day out. Rather pathetic really. The best would be to welcome Russia into the world economy. It can make a great contribution.

Patty Donovan Dan Good 4 years ago ,

I was brought up to hate Russia, to fear Russia but not anymore! It was all lies and manipulation! Do not include all Americans because its just not true but yes, Russophobia is from decades and decades of brainshing in America.. Believe me, since literally the age of 5 I was taught to fear Russia.

From school drills in preparation of " Russia coming to get us" to Putin being a communist dictator to now, Russia is more dangerous than terrorists organization is ALL lies by our government and media! People need to wake the hell up !

It is our government bombing and invading countries, our government funding millions to Isreal to slaughter Palestines, funding Nazi Ukraine president to kill Russian speaking E Ukrainians!

Our government funded and trained ISIS! The world is not n chaos because of your government!

Samantha Dan Good 4 years ago ,

Well, Washington D.C. IS afraid of rivalry.
Remeber the 1992 ,Wolfowitz Doctrine'? Even one of the mouthpieces, the NYT, was slightly disgusted.
The essence of that vile doctrine: do not allow any rival to rise and challenge US power, hegemony.

Patty Donovan Guest 4 years ago ,

I am not at all afraid of Russia. In fact they're much like us , who want peace and wished our countries were friends and allies like we should be ! But NO ! We have twisted butthead warmongers who want to cause trouble and keep Russia down because heaven forbid they might be bigger and better than us! I say good for them ! We are NOT excepectionals , we should be equals !

Luketree14 Patty Donovan 3 years ago ,

Totally agree, Patty

plamenpetkov Guest 3 years ago ,

Guess what, the Russians are not afraid of USA either.

But we all ARE afraid of a wounded animal, they are the most dangerous. And USA is a wounded dying animal. I will be very surprised if humanity managed to avoid a nuclear war within the next 10 years. The fake "capitalism" is collapsing and the only way out is a major war.

teddyfromcd plamenpetkov 2 years ago ,

IMO -- WHAT the americans among us are saying "'not afraid of russia\|"

is that they don't fear Russia the WAY the warmongers told them to fear Russia...

as if russians have some malicious nefarious intent towards americans...and they are right. americans should NOT fear russia nor russia americans in the sense that everyone are just PEOPLE -- ordinary folks who just want to grow up , live, have families and friends and work a good decent job, leave something for their children , etc..and then grow old with grace .

buit these warmongers of leaders are just so EVIL - who sit around with their cronies and their families and friends SCHEMING and makng their 'inner circle" decisions about 'shaping the world" as they see fit...and create MISERY for everyone.

Luketree14 plamenpetkov 3 years ago ,

quote: "The fake "capitalism" is collapsing and the only way out is a major war."

No, as it is implied in your statement, a major war is not a way out. What is a way out, is a reinventing of a new economy!

plamenpetkov Luketree14 3 years ago ,

There is nothing being implied into my statement. "Capitalism" has ALWAYS been fake and bunch of lies. With a major war, they will be able to keep the charade a bit longer, the same way thy did it with WWII.

Jacques Cuse Luketree14 3 years ago ,

Venus Project? https://www.thevenusproject...

teddyfromcd Dan Good 2 years ago ,

exactly

brilliant summation.

EUROPE and its ''invasion" by the USA is the USA'S STEPPING STONE and war front towards Moscow n order to rule over all of Eurasia -- all that resource and land, magine...

it is just a mirror of the USA'S ''conquering the west" ..by the other direction. as is JAPAN, peripeheral asian countries to china /russia is from the pacific end...

THAT'S really teh USA''s obsession - always was - and this has been OPENLY declared by no less than the likes of THEODORE ROOSEVELT, "the pacific shall be ours, the philippines shall be our doorstep and forever ours - and then on to the mainland of asia"...things of that kind...

no less than MANIFEST DESTINY to rule the world, or "OUR SOUTH AMERICAN BACKYARD"..

and were russia and europe to unite and have peaceful cooperation , trade, friendship and tighten their commonalities of cultures --

WHAT WOULD EUROPE AND EURASIA really need THE usa FOR?

DEFENSE AND SECURITY against WHOM exactly? a europe at peace with russia would SOON be a europe at peace WITH the middle east and africa -- and asia --

and the extremists would SO ISOLATED within that landmass they would simp;ly wither away for STARVATION as peoples ignore them

people who find meaningful decent jobs , children growing up with families intact and with futures to look forward to and travel everywhere their dreams allowed...etc...

WHAT WOULD the landmasses and their peoples and cultures NEED USA for? resources? technology? science? medicine/ / agriculture? food? ships? cars? .......security? defense/ ?

safety? rights? entertainment? cultural enrichment? stories? friends? nope

they would NOT NEED the USA at all. the wil.l welcome american FRIENDS and traders as it ought to be...but NOT as rulers and ''security and defense " SCAM ARTISTS.

THAT'S WHAT THE USA FEARS from russian/european integration...and become what it really IS..

AN OUTSIDER.

Jonathan Jarvis 4 years ago ,

look at all the blogs/comments in Uk nationalistic papers eg Daily mail-readers comments are full of vile nonsense and insane idiocy-there is no hope of peaceful resolution Rus and west while ordinary people are so ill informed, do not even wish to understand, completely prejudiced, have such entrenched attitudes perpetuated by mass media, playstation/xbox games and zombie films exported from USA that have morally corrupted peoples and nations.

NGO's being funded by USA to subvert other states, look out for cyberwarfare too.

Please support The Saker too, very high intelligence from this analyst.

Rocky Racoon 4 years ago ,

Just consider the speech's given by Western Leader's at the opening session of the UN recently -- Cameron posits critical thinking as being aligned with ISIS-Obama casting Russia as a threat equal to ISIS and Ebola

Rocky Racoon 4 years ago ,

Just consider the speech's given by Western Leader's at the opening session of the UN recently -- Cameron posits critical thinking as being aligned with ISIS-Obama casting Russia as a threat equal to ISIS and Ebola, ...these statements are allowed to pass uncritically into the mainstream without a second thought. This depraved leadership sends shivers down my spine as it indicates just serious our problems are and how far down the rabbit hole we have fallen. Capitalism in crisis produces fascism at home and primitive accumulation in the form of Imperialism abroad. America is broke and going from Broke having invested trillions in PNAC they are doubling down on full spectrum dominance-a fallacy that will never be reached leaving poverty stricken societies in their wake. Societies akin to the Hunger Games-quasi-feudal fiefdoms only serfs had more rights than today's wage slaves-tenure on the land,access to the mode of production ability the keep and trade the fruits of their labour at least to an extent. The fall of the Soviet Union was a catastrophe for the workers of the world-Not only did we not get a peace dividend from the end of the cold war but a century of social gains won by labour have been rolled back to practically nothing the finishing touches being put into place with the free trade deals about to be unleashed upon the Western Worker-notice austerity was and is not an option for Putin's Russia-he has put his neck on the line for his people and his country and they will do the same for him and the Motherland.

America has to hire mercenaries to fight their battles which is why they can't win. And these false flags are getting a little tiresome. And Mr. Lavrov as FM he is the consummate diplomat, he does not brow beat or chest pound,nor does he humiliate his adversaries even though circumstances have offered him ample opportunities-people like MCCAIN OBAMA and KERRY embarrass themselves and their nation often enough without Russia having to add insult to injury-Russia is above that but truth telling is another matter and must be pursued no matter how embarrassing for certain parties the exercise maybe Russia does need to increase it's public relations budget every thing from student exchanges on up to film festivals Sochi would make an excellent venue for the glitterati......and serves as a reminder of just how immature the West truly is when one harken's back to the coverage of the Olympics. This Ukraine situation needs to be resolved in opposition to the fascists putsch ruling now before it blows up in all of our faces. Cohen nailed it-we are 5 min. to midnight and closing.

Our real enemy is not in the Kremlin or the Middle East-but right here on Wall Street and Pennsylvania Avenue-time for Occupy 2.0 with Agenda.

Webbily Rocky Racoon 4 years ago ,

Yes, and Ebola isn't a real threat. The only reason it's in the US is because people have been idiots and have not taken the proper precautions. Russia has a vaccine ready to go. ISIS was created by the US, and they're not a real threat. I am not afraid of Russia or the KGB or Putin or Boris and Natasha. All of it is fear, fear, fear, fear, fear.

elizabeth Eva Young Rocky Racoon 4 years ago ,

Oh Yes, and not forgetting the hybrid not so Holy Hollywood, the entertainment industry who of course are run by the Banksters. The missing link in humanity the genetic modification from apes to human form, the Banksters. Do you remember the "Man from Atlantis" and the "Planet of the Apes" and the oil magnets "Dallas"
https://encrypted-tbn1.gsta...
Play Hide

idiotland • 4 years ago ,

What this shows more than anything is how desperate the western elites are. They know Russia, China and others are rising powers and that the US empire's days are numbered. The dollar's reign as world reserve currency is coming to an end and they know that the US a busted, bankrupt economic house of cards that could completely collapse at any time taking down US power with it. Hence, the risk taking and recklessness. We're in a very dangerous time.

elizabeth wesley 4 years ago ,

It just takes a few to manipulate the minds of public opinion and perception. That is mind control and you have to ignore mainstream media and go online to find unadulterated truth. Putin has other means to deal with the US; he doesn't have to stoop so low to call obama what he really is: an illegitimate child who became an illegitimate president, a man who came from nowhere and has nothing to offer but war with third world nations who have no nuclear defense. America is as confused as Africa and his zionist handlers like it that way.

Webbily 4 years ago ,

Listen up, Russia! If you would just get your borders away from our military bases, that would be great.
Love,
Amerika

astoriava 4 years ago ,

The basic problem is, and always will be, that people believe what they want to believe irregardless of facts, evidence, proof or common sense. The believe that which they think will benefit themselves, soothe their ego, fill their pockets, bring tem pleasure etc and deliberatly ignore, condemn, and close their eyes to learning something that may not fit that goal. They rationalize away their deliberate ignorance and refuse to look for truth under some morally relative "label" or "cause" so that they don't have to face truth about themselves and their true intentions.

Rose-Marie Mukarutabana 4 years ago ,

The Valdai Speech is on the "President of Russia" website - or at least three quarters of it, with the rest still being translated from Russian: http://eng.kremlin.ru/news/...

Draft Resister 4 years ago ,

Seriously, should this question even be asked? Of course intelligence agencies are trying to destabilize Russia.

Dragos • 4 years ago ,

The Economist is the voice of the british oligarchy and security services. They don't need to be advised by the CIA, because the English oligarchy is dictating US politics and strategy.

Incredulously Yours, Dragos 2 years ago ,

It's the voice of the R O T H S C H I L D S .....

plamenpetkov 3 years ago ,

Is the Pope Catholic? Do you even have to ask? After almost 25 years of documented USA lies against Iraq/Iran do we even have to discuss this?
documented USA/NATO lies that have been proven to be lies:
1990 babies taken out of incubators and left to die on cold hospital floor
1990-1999 Saddam working on nuclear weapons
2001 Osama engineered and did 9-11
2001-2003 Saddam has ties with Ali Queda
2001-2003 Saddam has weapons of mass distraction (Colin Powell, Bush jr, Cheney, Condy Rice, etc)
2002-2203 Saddam working on weapons of mass distraction
2002-2003 Saddam working on acquiring nuclear weapons
2001 Iran will have nuclear bomb
2001 Iran has ties with Ali Queda
2002 Iran will have nuclear bomb
2003 Iran will have nuclear bomb
2004 Iran will have nuclear bomb
2005 Iran will have nuclear bomb
2006 Iran will have nuclear bomb
2007 Iran will have nuclear bomb
2008 Iran will have nuclear bomb
2009 Iran will have nuclear bomb
2010 Iran will have nuclear bomb
2011 Iran will have nuclear bomb
2012 Iran will have nuclear bomb
2013 Iran will have nuclear bomb
2013 Assad gassed his own people (part 1)
2013 Assad gassed his own people (part 2)
2014 Iran will have nuclear bomb
2014 Assad gassed his own people (part 3)

Incredulously Yours, plamenpetkov 2 years ago ,

BraaaaVO! Killer post....Ironically, at age 57, I NOW do what Russians TOLD ME they did over 30 years ago: Whatever I read in the papers or hear from the U.S. gov, I automatically believe the OPPOSITE! Auto-freakin'-matically.....works like a chahm...

Benjamin Netanyahu 4 years ago ,

A very interesting professionally made video of the entire Valdai speech of the President of Russia (24 Oct 14) along with all the pointed questions asked of him by the Russian, Bulgarian, Palestinian, English, and American audience, and his complete answers to these, can be found at the "Vineyard of the Saker" site (h t t p : / / vineyardsaker.blogspot.com/... .

tiredofthemedialies • 3 years ago ,

Is the CIA Running a Defamation Campaign Against Putin?

No!! Fancy that!! Where have you been for the last 3 years? and why bring it up now? The CIA has been waging full-spectrum media warfare, propaganda, dis-information and covert destabilisation of Russia and the Russian president for many years. (What do you think they are paid for? making tea?)

Er, um • 3 years ago ,

It's just a coincidence that we chosen people own and run Newsweek, The Economist, The Daily Express, The Daily Mirror, The New York Times, The New York Post, The Washington Post, News International (The Sun Newspaper, Sky News, Fox News), The Independent, The London Evening Standard, the Los Angeles Times, The San Francisco Chronicle, ABC News, CBS News, NBC News, Bloomberg News, and Reuters. And run the BBC.

It's just a coincidence, goyim. Nothing to see here. Move along. And keep thinking what we tell you to think.

Jeremy Bourbon 3 years ago ,

Russia is establishing a BRICS development bank and consequently becoming a threat to the IMF and WB, this is why the global eite want Putin removed and a puppet regime put in place.

Luketree14 3 years ago ,

It's also good to remember that this has been going on for years and years, and in spite of that, Pr. Vladimir Putin kept offering his friendship, insisting on the importance of collaboration, equal terms, exchange, peace, and even disarmament ! For years and years !

Soarintothesky 3 years ago ,

Considerable Ukrainian money has gone into influencing US, EU and Israeli press and politicians ($12m to the Clinton foundation gets Hilary's attention). It is not necessary to invoke the CIA.

The remnants of Mockingbird work for defense institutes in Estonia, Universities in Azerbaijan and think tanks in Poland. It is not necessary to invoke the current US government. One thing fascinates me. Every year or so there is yet another negative biography of Putin. I do not believe the market is so big. Beresovsky started it - his cousin wrote the first one and claimed P had $40Bn without any evidence whatsoever. Did he fund the others too (there hasn't been one recently).

EVcine 3 years ago ,

To our German friends on here I say...isn't it weird that no one is allowed to say the word "reunification" for Crimea and Russia
I do not recall a referendum for the DDR citizens.

deliaruhe 3 years ago ,

Germany and most other EU countries are merely assisting in their own decline. Any country -- including mine -- that insists on continuing to play the role of vassal to Washington will enjoy the same fate that Washington is stupidly preparing for itself. The German government has to have a few screws loose to join Washington in driving Putin into the arms of the Chinese -- and taking his natural gas resources with him. Don't be surprised if Germans freeze in the dark this winter.

CassandraSays 3 months ago ,

It goes on day and night in Russia, although that doesn't exclude an American origin.

There is no defamation of Putin that is not screamed from the rafters by the Russian liberati. The allegations of corruption, photoshopped pictures of Putin with women who can be found by an image search in the same pose and clothing embracing somebody else, the whole nine yards.

rosewood11 2 years ago ,

First off, I say this as a former bookseller, who spent major amounts of time shelving the magazines and newspapers. Newsweek is all but dead. Put a fork in it, it's done!!! I didn't know The Economist was a Rothschild publication until someone on here pointed it out. I did know, however, that most people consider it one of the most manifestly boring magazines on the planet. Finally, as regards the British tabloids shown and the American ones that didn't get mentioned, they are for people who have a little mind and a little time. My favorite one was The Weekly World News, now sadly gone. I know it transgressed the bounds of good journalism, but now I'll never know what became of "Bat Boy," the pregnant mummy (the museum janitor did it!!!) or the 12 US Senators who are actually space aliens. (Now, I know they're lying. There's way more than 12 of them!!!)

That said, when I see headlines like the ones shown here, I ignore them. Newsweek discredited itself long ago, and this presidential election cycle has done much in America to do the same for Big Media and both political parties. That's what made my family start listening to alternative media, and thank God for the Internet!!! The truth about Mr. Putin is out there for anyone who cares to look. I've had to work hard to convince a friend of Ukrainian descent that he's not the one screwing up their homeland, but they are beginning to question. I've also shocked several people out of their socks by telling them Mr. Putin is a devout Christian man. So far, I've found about 3 people out of 30 or so I've told this who had any inkling. And one of them is a pastor who won't tell his congregation!!!

The Russian people have a good leader. Would that America had one at least half as capable. Until then, follow the old adage: "Don't believe anything you hear, and only half of what you see!!!"

teddyfromcd 2 years ago ,

IS THE CIA an american organization ? is it and the USA gov a ''legalized" criminal empire organization?

the answer to both is YES... therefore the answer to the question on impugning putin and russia is - YES.

Kjell Hasthi teddyfromcd 2 years ago ,

There is a black defence budget on the level on the official one = not American money
(CAI agent told it. He had cancer and id not care about doing anything "unlegal" by telling it)

sepheronx 2 years ago ,

Why bother asking this question now? Russians are fully aware, so is nearly everyone else. Hence why even with this defemation campaign, Putin hold far more popularity than nearly anyone else. The others who hold popularity are equally against the US and others (Fair Russia Party, Communist, etc). Only ones that sing the grace of US BS, Yabloko and other "liberal" parties/people, are 3%'ers. In other words, hated amongst majority of their population.

The thing about all these media campaigns that the west tries and does, which the Saker failed to state, is that they do not work. Essentially, all it will do is rally the Russians against others. As the newspapers love to demonize Putin, it is all written in English with few actually being translated. And when it does, it ends up as a laughing stock of the country. As well, it is barely working here. Yes, there are a few useful idiots around, we even see them on the comment sections here, but lets be frank - even westerns do not believe it. But if their intention is to destabilize Russia, then they are clearly not working. Putin's popularity back in 2011 was 65%. Now it is over 80%. Clearly, the west is doing him more favors than not.

If he ever even loses popularity, and someone else wins, guarantee it will either be the communists or the nationalists (fair russia). And that is when the west will be dealing with people who are going to make sure they go out of their way to hurt the US.

Helen 3 years ago ,

Al western media is a propagandamachine for the american elite.We who read alternative media admire Putin and see him as mankinds biggest hope.

Webbily Guest 4 years ago ,

Clearly it's Putin who has bombed six countries in seven years...or is it seven countries in six years. Whichever. He isn't bombing sovereign nations, and deciding that recognized leaders in sovereign states are the latest incarnation of Hitler and thus need to be sacrificed to the god Pele.

idiotland Igor 4 years ago ,

He's a colossal scumbag for not doing what Washington says. He actually thinks that Russia should be sovereign country outside of the influence of the "exceptional" and "indispensable" nation. What a loser!

Webbily idiotland 4 years ago ,

Igor is missing his drunk pal Boris.

Jack Bluebird 2 years ago ,

Gorbachev is a traitor and dumbest person ever to walk this planet. The only thing that is unbelievable is the fact that everyone are buying into "american dishonesty" story when it is purely visible and understood that no one with a fraction of a brain would ever allow something of this magnitude to happen.( allowing Germany the country that wanted to obliterate Russia and USSR not even 50 years ago at that point ) to reunite based on verbal agreement. He should have been shot in the head the moment he landed back in the USSR for giving such approval without consultaing in detail Soviet Army generals and KGB directors.

People stop drinking KoolAid and open your eyes. gorbachev sold the whole USSR for few private "foundations".

May he rot in Hell forever.

astoriava Guest 4 years ago ,

Do you unquestionably believe everything you are told to believe or can you start someday to think for yourself and look for logic, facts, evidence, multiple and oppositional sources of information and well founded deduction to make your decisions?

Webbily Guest 4 years ago ,

What war has he started? What terrorists has he supplied weapons with? What minorities is he oppressing. Oh, d'ye mean the gays? You obviously haven't spent much time in the USA if you think everyone here is open-minded about homosexuality. Maybe in the cities on the coast but in the small towns of the rest of middle America, they are pretty conservative about that issue and openly so. I've met my fair share of homophobes in my lifetime and none of them were from Russia. I would say 50 percent of Americans disapprove of homosexuality, and attitudes have only changed somewhat in the past 10 years. All of those gay marriage bans were passed by voters, even in so-called "progressive" states like California, as recently as 2008. You think you can't get your butt beat for being gay in the United States? You think there aren't any anti-gay laws here? You think the anti-gay propaganda law in Russia is actually enforced? Sure, they could have a different attitude toward that sort of thing, but so could a lot of people. If someone is gay and is that concerned about their safety, stay out of Russia the same way you'd stay out of Utah. You're a person who thinks it's a human right to stage a gay pride parade, but if some idiot "girls" walk into a church and make fun of someone's religious beliefs, well they should be celebrated as heroes.
Who did he threaten to nuke? Got proof of that? I mean proof, not hearsay. Do you have a voice recording of Putin threatening to nuke people?
Stop calling him Putler. His brother was killed by the Nazis. You are ignorant. You must be confusing Putin with our current president, Obomba, and our last prezzident, Bushwacker.

Stop Bush and Clinton 3 months ago ,

Another problem that needs to be fixed is their control over schools and universities.

An aspiring journalist who went through a lot of effort translating a Putin speech and commenting on it, then getting an F while watching the lazy guy sitting in the class next to him getting an A+++ for writing "Putin's speech translates to 'We'll steal Ukraine because we hate democracy. Heil Hitler! Death to America!' (and any other translation you may see is Russian propaganda, Russia controls the media worldwide), therefore we need to strengthen NATO and move troops directly to Russia's border to fight off that threat" probably learned the lesson before even starting his job.

Anthony Justice 2 years ago ,

I'm British and the more the media attack Mr Putin the more I trust him! I think if Britain was involved in an altercation with Russia the public would not back it. People in the West feel very down trodden at the minute and if Britain doesn't leave Europe I think democracy will be questioned! It's time to live and let live and help each other instead of interfering, for me Mr Putin plays a good game and seems to be more realistic than our politicians, who knows but people across the world want peace and it's about time we demanded our governments stopped interfering. Every country has it's problems and could sort them out if they weren't too busy interfering over seas! War is horrific and must be avoided at all costs but greed will always motivate war. Someone invent a non-greedy pill please😀

ArnieLerma 2 years ago ,

The US Secret Government hates PUTIN as much as they HATED JOHN F KENNEDY.

Shahna 2 years ago ,

There is one little item the author is missing. The USA regards Russia and China as "existential threats to the USA" because they are existential threats to the USA. Without it's world hegemon and tight control on global trade, the US crumbles and fades away. Russia and China are slowly but surely, bit by bit, taking them away. Existential threat.

All living things, even empires, fight for their survival.

Shahna 2 years ago ,

"Is the CIA Running a Defamation Campaign Against Putin?"
-------------------
On no. Every word the CIA says is true. Simple - it's true because they said it! American logic.

legal eagle • 2 years ago ,

"Is the CIA Running a Defamation Campaign Against Putin?" Do bears poo in the woods ?

stevor 2 years ago ,

to attack the leader of a country is to attack the country? No, I don't think so. In the case of o'bama, to attack him is to HELP the country get out from under a LYING SCUMBAG FRAUD and to go back to following the Constitution!

Dennis De Jarnette 2 years ago ,

The magazine cover lamenting the spies that run Russia caused me to chuckle. George Bush I ran the CIA.

AMHants 2 years ago ,

Yes, but is it working?

There are many who believe the MSM and take what they say as Gospel, but there are also many that have woken from the zombie, media induced diet of the MSM and they are voicing their concerns and also given a different type of narative to counterbalance the MSM and that is also working.

"We'll know our disinformation program is complete when everything the American public believes is false."? William Casey, Director of CIA

How much money is the CIA, US, EU and Soros investing in their media disinformation programme? It is quite frightening when you look at the figures involved. Why do they need to do so?

This article goes back to 2011, I wonder how far it stretches in 21016?

Soros-Funded Lefty Media Reach More Than 300 Million Every Month... http://www.mrc.org/commenta...

Ironically, the more the MSM goes into a media frenzy with a story, I now always question the motives and reasons why and then completely dismiss the story.

http://rense.com/1.imagesH/...

http://www.isaiahexplained....

Vierotchka Dewey Olsen 2 years ago ,

That's an extremely convoluted, circumlocutory and long-winded way of saying "History repeats itself"....

[Apr 29, 2018] Is the CIA Running a Defamation Campaign Against Putin by The Saker

Notable quotes:
"... ( Editors Note : Operation Mockingbird was a CIA program started in the 1950s to influence the US media, which was gradually exposed by investigative journalists starting in the late 60s, culminating in sensational televised congressional hearings in 1975 which shocked the nation, forcing the program's termination. Critics maintain that the same tactics have continued since, under different programs. Wikipedia ) ..."
"... nowadays a reporter is either unemployed or a prostitute ..."
Apr 29, 2018 | russia-insider.com

The latest hot topic in the Russian media. Russian politicians are talking about it. Historical precedent and behavior of Western media suggests that they are. The Saker Fri, Apr 22, 2016 | 52,080 195 MORE: Politics A major topic in the Russian media is mystification with how Putin is portrayed in the Western media.

Wildly popular at home, and seen as a decent, modest, an admirable person, and Russians don't understand how there can be such a disconnect with Western impressions.

Recently, leading Russian commentators and politicians have been suggesting that this can only be explained by a deliberate campaign to defame Putin, by governments or other groups.

Yesterday, at a briefing to foreign journalists, Sergey Ivanov, Putin's chief of staff, arguably the 2nd most powerful man in Russia, spoke of an "information war" consisting of "personal attacks" on Putin.

The western media hit a new low...
The day before another member of Putin's inner circle, Vyasheslav Volodin, made similar remarks , telling foreign journalists "an attack on Putin is an attack on Russia." The logic, they argue, is that by defaming the leader of a country, you weaken his power domestically by undermining popular support for him, and internationally, by rallying popular opinion to support policies against that country. The ultimate goal, they argue, is to weaken the country itself. They also talk about regime change. They argue that if one looks at the facts, that there is evidence of ongoing character assassination which cannot be explained by a vague popular zeitgeist in the West, but is more likely the result of a dedicated effort to introduce this defamation into the news flow.
Newsweek has been one of the most virulent Putin-bashers for years
The issue of manipulation of news by intelligence services has been in the news recently with revelations that the CIA and German Secret Service (GSS) have long-running programs to influence how media executives and top journalists convey and interpret the news, including direct cash payments. Here are some examples they point to: RI sat down with The Saker , a leading analyst of Russia in international affairs, and asked him what he thinks:

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

So, is there any credence to this line of thinking, or is this conspiracy theorists running wild?

There is no doubt in my mind whatsoever that the US is waging a major psyop war against Russia, although not a shooting war, for now, and that what we are seeing is a targeted campaign to discredit Putin and achieve "regime change" in Russia or, should that fail, at the very least "regime weakening" and "Russia weakening".

And the Economist has been the very worst of them all...

So this is a US government program?

Yes, Putin is absolutely hated by certain factions in the US government two main reasons:

1. He partially, but not fully, restored Russia's sovereignty which under Gorbachev and Yeltsin had been totally lost Russia then was a US colony like Ukraine is today and,

2. He dared to openly defy the USA and its civilizational model.

a free and sovereign Russia is perceived by the US "deep state" as an existential threat which has to be crushed. this is a full-scale political assault on Russia and Putin personally.

So what the Russians are saying, that the constant personal attacks against Putin in the global media are partly the result of deliberate efforts by US intelligence services, basically, planted stories

Yes, absolutely

It seems like "Operation Mockingbird" all over again Are you aware of other instances aimed at Putin?

( Editors Note : Operation Mockingbird was a CIA program started in the 1950s to influence the US media, which was gradually exposed by investigative journalists starting in the late 60s, culminating in sensational televised congressional hearings in 1975 which shocked the nation, forcing the program's termination. Critics maintain that the same tactics have continued since, under different programs. Wikipedia )

Yes, of course. Since this defamation has very little traction with the Russian public Putin's popularity is higher than ever before .., there is an organized campaign to convince them that Putin is "selling out" Novorussia, that he is a puppet of oligarchs who are making deals with Ukrainian oligarchs to back-stab the Novorussian resistance

So far, Putin's policies in the Ukraine have enjoyed very strong support from the Russian people who still oppose an overt military intervention

but if Kiev attacks Novorussia again - which appears very likely - and if such an attack is successful - which is less likely but always possible - then Putin will be blamed for having given the Ukrainians the time to regroup and reorganize.

Warm and fuzzy...

So you are saying that if the Ukrainian military strengthens its position enough to deliver a serious blow to the East Ukrainians, the US can use this as a method to strike at Putin's support base

Yes, that's right ... t here are a lot of "fake patriots" in Russia and abroad who will reject any negotiated solution and who will present any compromise as a "betrayal". They are the "useful idiots" used by western special services to smear and undermine Putin.

Is it limited to government special ops, or are there other groups who might have an interest in doing this?

Yes, well here is something that most people in the west don't appreciate there is a major behind-the scenes struggle among Russian elites between what I call the "Eurasian Sovereignists" (basically, those who support Putin) and what I call the "Atlantic Integrationists" (those whom Putin refers to as the "5th column).

The western media talks about this as the struggle between Russian liberals and conservatives, reformers and reactionaries, right?

Well its sort of like that, but not exactly

The former see Russia's future in the Russian North and East and want to turn Russia towards Asia, Latin America and the rest of the world, while the latter want Russia to become part of the "North Atlantic" power configuration.

The Atlantic Integrationists are now too weak to openly challenge Putin - whose real power base is his immense popular support - but they are quietly sabotaging his efforts to reform Russia while supporting anti-Putin campaigns.

Regarding the revelations of CIA activities in Germany, do you think this is going on in other countries, in the US?

I am sure that this is happening in most countries worldwide. The very nature of the modern corporate media is such that it makes journalists corrupt.

As the French philosopher Alain Soral says " nowadays a reporter is either unemployed or a prostitute ". There are, of course, a few exceptions, but by and large this is true.

This is not to say that most journalists are on the take. In the West this is mostly done in a more subtle way - by making it clear which ideas do or do not pass the editorial control, by lavishly rewarding those journalists who 'get it' and by quietly turning away those who don't.

If a journalist or reporter commits the crime of "crimethink" he or she will be sidelined and soon out of work.

There is no real pluralism in the West where the boundaries of what can be said or not are very strictly fixed.

Ok, but is it like what has been revealed in Germany, similar specific operational programs in France, the UK, Italy, Latin America, etc.

Yes, one has to assume so – it is in their interests to have them and there is no reason for them not to.

As for the CIA, it de-facto controls enough of the corporate media to "set the tone". As somebody who in the past used to read the Soviet press for a living, I can sincerely say that it was far more honest and more pluralistic than the press in the USA or EU today.

Joseph Goebbels or Edward Bernays could not have imagined the degree of sophistication of modern propaganda machines.

If the US is doing it, can't one assume other governments are too? Are the Russians doing it against western leaders?

I think that all governments try to do that kind of stuff. However, what makes the US so unique it a combination of truly phenomenal arrogance and multi-billion dollar budgets.

The US "deep state" owns the western corporate media which is by far the most powerful media on the planet. Most governments can only do that inside their own country ... to smear a political opponent or discredit a public figure, but they simply do not have the resources to mount an international strategic psyop campaign. This is something only the US can do.

So foreign governments are at a great disadvantage in this arena vis-a-vis the US?

Absolutely. MORE:


Johnpd Guest 4 years ago ,

Excellent. Another point to grasp is that the Banksters do not want a true capitalism, where inefficiency fails, & competition trims profits.
They want what we now have in the West : a crony corporatist state, where ever fewer giant globalist multinationals dominate both commerce & countries, pay no taxes, to the benefit of their CEOs , shareholders & their banksters.
In short, effectively, a Fascism.
Book : Pawns in the Game, by William Guy Carr. See where those "Atlantic Integrationists" came from.

FullDisclosure Guest 4 years ago ,

Russia today is the only power standing up to the world oligarchy. If Russia falls then we will all be living as slaves behind a barb wired fence, with chips under our skin, etc. etc.

Webbily Guest 4 years ago ,

Yes, and Russia has actually been making efforts to keep the dollar afloat, because they know the US hegemons will get even nastier of their precious dollar becomes worthless. Their goal isn't to integrate Ukraine into the EU. They want to create a failed state on Russia's border, and also hopefully engage them militarily in Syria and in places like Chechnya.

spin to win Guest 3 years ago ,

I've heard tell...Russia's central banking institution does not belong to the state. Does this sound familiar? I do not believe that the international banking system give two turds about the affairs of Russia, unless...Russia moves to control it's own central bank, then there would be real war.
Bankers have no allegiance except to money

Yonatan spin to win 2 years ago ,

It is headed by Chicago-school wannabes who follow the dictates of a banking system aimed at preversving the US banks at the expense of their onw country's economy.

Nabuliana (sp ?), the head of the Russian CB, knows she is on borrowed time but still keep favoring the US over Russia.

dixi3150 Guest 3 years ago ,

The say a rat that is cornered can be very viscous, that's the US.

AMHants dixi3150 2 years ago ,

What is it they also say about dying Empires. The US did not retain Empire status for long, when you look at Russia and China, they are just a toddler on the block?

Incredulously Yours, dixi3150 2 years ago ,

Oh? Violent too....

Иван Guest 3 years ago ,

Very interesting perspective.
I'm very curious to hear western comments on Russian conspiracy theories that Fed already owns Russia and current straggle is a straggle for independence. It seems wild but for people who view Federal Reserve Bank as a direct enemy of humanity it doesn't seem very far-fetched.

sixpack Иван 2 years ago ,

WHEN PUTIN WAS ELECTED PRESIDENT of Russia in 2000, Russia was bankrupt. The nation owed $16.6 billion to the Rothschild-run International Monetary Fund while its foreign debt to the Rothschild-controlled Paris & London Club Of Creditors was over 36 billion dollars.

But Putin took advantage of the current boom in world oil prices by redirecting a portion of the profits of Russia's largest oil producer Gazprom so as to pay off the country's debt. The continual surge in oil prices greatly accelerated Russia's capacity to restore financial sovereignty.

By 2006 Putin had paid off Russia's debt to the Rothschilds. Russia's financial dependence on the Mafia financiers was now over. I doubt they've gotten another hold since then.

wilmers13 Guest a year ago ,

You need to understand that President Putin's divorce is a private matter. In the Anglo World they stick their nose into these private matters but in Russia they do not. Who knows; there have been people who got divorced so the spouse would not cop it in the event of big problems. They even got married again later on. The Anglo World is also dumb, always behaving as if the removal of ONE man would cure something, e.g. Saddam, Gaddafi, Assad - nah. Or take Myanmar; if only the lady (whose name I cannot spell) would rule the country, everything would be fine. Nah - she's extremely racist and will not utter the name of one tribe 'Rohingyas'.

There is definitely a campaign against Russia and President Putin. For Germany it's the

Atlantik-Brücke which steers the press, in Australia the Australia-American Leadership Dialogue, something else in the other countries, just like the late Brian Crozier masqueraded as a journalist but was CIA funded. The campaign needs to be ignored although it is really peculiar that Bush Sr. was fine as CIA chief, and Putin as KGB officer was not. I'ts just the usual American double standards.

Shahna Guest 2 years ago ,

(I think) .... Putin's divorce is not yours to wonder about or criticise.
'Sides, he said, at his last Q&A, he gets on better with his ex now than he did when he was married. That should be good enough for you.

teddyfromcd Guest 2 years ago ,

I THINK the time has come for RUSSIA to play HARDBALL with teh us gov and cia, nsa. etc...

and that is to OPENLY , REPEATEDLY -- RIGHT AT THE LEVEL OF UN AND INTERNATIONAL FORUMS - RIGHT INTO any ''talks" between EU/WEST/ and relations with other nations

always INCLUDE , INSERT -- part of discussions -- teh CIA/US GOV /ENTITIES

attempts against russia.

MAKE IT very prominent that it can NOT be ignored no matter what the USA TRIES...

in order to puit FRONT AND CENTER in the world the attention on THE CIA.

don't let it remain ''incidental" topic to ''major issues"

rather -- make it A CENTRAL topic in every instance and keep throwing t at the USA so that all international meetings ALWAYS bring up

\
USA/CIA - USA,/CIA -- sabotage -- oh yet again another CIA operation in macedonia, oh another one in cnetral asia...etc....

let us remember --

2 cia emplyed ''pschiatrist/psychologists" who took care of the ''methodology" of CIA TORTURE are right now being sued in a US court that is forced to open hearings -- on the suit by former tortured detainees...

the PORTUGUESE AMERICAN woman - SOUSA -- is ordered to appear in an ITALIAN COURT to face her charges for conspiracy to kidnap, rendition , torture the arab/italian citizen

more and more will come, that is inevitable and the CIA ought to be BROUGHT BEYOND just ''topic of discussion" --but as the DEEP STATE that it is -- out into the open -- calling out, searchng out its operatives, officers, policy makers, amerifcan officials -- that' sort of thing...and the only way to do that is make it a WORLD GLOBAL CAUSE TO BRING UP in all matters of international governance and relations -- in press conferences...assemblies, treaties, etc...

Guest • 4 years ago ,

I just want to point out that German media is worst, because Germans need the most convincing to go to war with Russia. The western media now has to combat the anti-war tendencies they propagated onto Germans ever since the end of WW2. If you read the comments on all these anti-Putin propaganda articles, you can tell that Germans hate their own media for doing so.

Lisa Guest 3 years ago ,

Hey, I`m from Germany (Stuttgart), and i can definitely say, that we Germans hate our media and get the informations we need from the Internet. Angela Merkel do what Obama says to her and we can do nothing. if we go to the street and make a Demonstration they say we are nazi or the media say nothing. many People (the old People) in Germany hate Putin and belive the lies from the media, but we, the young people dont belive the lies. We love Putin and wish Angela Merkel will be a little bit like Putin.

dixi3150 Lisa 3 years ago ,

I'm also German (Lahr, Schwartzwald) and totally agree. NEVER watch German TV. It is like for imbeciles. Cooking, singing, festivals everything to keep us from thinking for ourselves. I also get all my info from sites like this one and many others. Love Putin and think Ouma Merkel sold out to the US.

Martin Alfven Haider dixi3150 3 years ago ,

Sounds like American tv. But without all the series about serial killers, violence and perversion. What they have done to us and our collective psyche here is sick, and demonic.

teddyfromcd Martin Alfven Haider 2 years ago ,

but this is not just a problem IN america -- germane TV as some of our friends here have said - getng shallower -- IS A PART of the ''influence" of american ''way\" ..

to bring up mostly and primarily shallow past-times...that takes up LIFE HOURS...when you really count it,,,

ONE shallow pastime after another...the WORST imo,,,apart from these silly ''reality shows\" (which ARE copied throughout the world unfortunately in that desire to be ''more american" -- even in CHINA ) -

are these ''game shows" -- trivia shows..that used to be just CHILD'S play n the backyard and really is where they OUGHT to stay so children can be children...

but NATIONAL CULTURE? trivia shows? give me a BREAK!

but that's exactly what americana brings to societies..the HIGHLIGHTING AND GLORIFICATION OF SILLINESS and SHALLOWNESS as a NATIONAL ETHOS.

and a sure-fire way of turning out , reshaping and ''winning hearts and minds" by making them exposed - without choice really -- to ''the only games in town"

SILLY LITTLE GAMES that 'TRAIN the mind to become STUPID".

this - THIS is the great TRIUMPH of the american society over the world. where everything -- even WAR -- is now ''entertainment" - to be ''packaged" - promoted sold, and switched around like cotton candy by the powers that be...and deeper critical thought -- or honest simplicity of thought and discourse is ''NOT ALLOWED".

Seán Murphy dixi3150 a month ago ,

You should see the satellite TV aimed at Britain and Ireland....

[Apr 29, 2018] The entire Liberal narratives around Vladimir Putin and Alexander Dugin are actually political reconstructions of the "Yellow Peril" stereotype

Notable quotes:
"... The entire Liberal narratives around Vladimir Putin and Alexander Dugin are actually political reconstructions of the "Yellow Peril" stereotype of the evil Asian who schemes to conquer the west, a viscous racist caricature straight out of the old dime magazine pulps. ..."
"... Originally Putin was depicted by liberals as merely a fiendish Asian criminal mastermind. After he finally started responding to the endless provocations, he became the terrible Fu Manchu, leader of a secret society of assassins, always plotting to destroy the west. Next to him is Alexander Dugin, a diabolical eastern sorcerer and leader of a fanatical sect. ..."
"... These sterotypes are 100% racist, and of the kind of brutal American "Yellow Peril" racism that justified both the mass internments of the Japanese in concentration camps and the nuclear genocide of two civilian cities. ..."
Apr 29, 2018 | russia-insider.com

Akira Kalashnikov 2 years ago ,

The entire Liberal narratives around Vladimir Putin and Alexander Dugin are actually political reconstructions of the "Yellow Peril" stereotype of the evil Asian who schemes to conquer the west, a viscous racist caricature straight out of the old dime magazine pulps.

Originally Putin was depicted by liberals as merely a fiendish Asian criminal mastermind. After he finally started responding to the endless provocations, he became the terrible Fu Manchu, leader of a secret society of assassins, always plotting to destroy the west. Next to him is Alexander Dugin, a diabolical eastern sorcerer and leader of a fanatical sect.

Now (straight out of a Fu Manchu plotline) Putin is supposedly plotting to install his puppet as president of the United States.

These sterotypes are 100% racist, and of the kind of brutal American "Yellow Peril" racism that justified both the mass internments of the Japanese in concentration camps and the nuclear genocide of two civilian cities.

[Apr 29, 2018] NEO - The Simple Truth of Vladimir Putin's Diabolical Plan by Phil Butler

Notable quotes:
"... "We believe that at the very least we should wait for the results of the UN inspection commission in Syria. I've already said I find it absolutely ridiculous that [Syrian] government's armed forces, which today are actually on an offense mission and in some regions have already encircled the so-called rebels and are finishing them off, that the Syrian army has used prohibited chemical weapons." ..."
Apr 29, 2018 | www.veteranstoday.com

In the New York Times last week, veteran reporter Neil MacFarquhar reminded us Vladimir Putin's "fight" with the West is isolating Russia. The Middle East expert's latest Russia hate also interpolated that the woeful isolation is failing to deter Putin. But what is it that Putin is fighting against? What is the so-called "West" trying to deter him from? Better still, where is the evidence of his cunning plan to destroy all?

I do not know why, but to my knowledge, no one has ever asked these simple questions. Here we are in a new and bitter Cold War, and nobody I can name has any reasonable explanation of what the fight is about.

There are allegations by the truckload. There's sanctions, proxy wars, terrorists scattered, CIA money spent, dignitaries tossed out on their ears, and ten thousand news outlets screaming "Putin foul" – but over what? You can't answer because it's all over nothing. Here's a brief history of the real crimes of Vladimir Putin.

In the early 2000s, Vladimir Putin was running a country almost destroyed by corruption, foreign interventions, and pirates bent on privatizing anything of value for western investors. The advance of the globalist doctrine had reached the borders of the country; wars were brewed in former Soviet republics where regime changes and color revolutions were not working.

The notorious Russian mob, the Israeli mob, anybody inside the country that could be bought by western pirates was taking a bite from the Russian legacy. Putin stepped in and sorted it out. Putin did not sell Russia out. This was a capital crime.

Later in the decade, Vladimir Putin proposed an initiative known as the "Vladivostok to Lisbon" protocol. The plan was for one gigantic Eurasian market worth tens of trillions of dollars. The plan was for a full and fair integration of Russia within the global context. Only the plan made Russia an integral partner rather than a network of small banana republics like Yugoslavia became.

The Putin plan would have assured almost unbreakable cooperation, prosperity, and peace. But the suggestion of such a thing to the existing world order was a heinous crime.

When 2009 rolls around and the world's fascination with then Prime Minister Putin grows. The New York Times back then questioned the Russian leader's work ethic. Western media reported Putin singing "Blueberry Hill" and playing the piano. And the Washington Post begins the rail about "Putin, the killer." Then in 2010, the heat was turned up.

US newspapers began the "huge protest" gambit, Putin the arch criminal became all the rage. The Vladimir Putin legend began to grow during this time. Rumors and speculation became the flavor of the day. Then in 2011, the Russian leader went so far as to criticize the West for the Libya regime change. And we all know how Libya turned out.

Starting in 2012 the mainstream media in the West began predicting the downfall of Vladimir Putin. The Economist titled its prediction. "The beginning of the end of Putin." So much for deep economic analysis and forecasting. It is in this year that Masha Gessen gets the big headlines for labeling Vladimir a "crime boss" and a homophobe.

Meanwhile, the real criminals like Mikhail Khodorkovsky gather steam for the lies and mudslinging to come. NPR and other corporate owned media get readers by labeling Putin a "street thug" and etc. But Putin won the election that year anyhow. And even though The Slate labeled him "Putin the pitiful," he somehow managed the biggest country in the world skillfully. Pussy Riot defiles a Russian Orthodox Church snagging some jail time, and down the rabbit hole we go.

Then in 2013 the world's biggest ever arch villain commits the ultimate sacrilege. At the moment then President Barack Obama is gathering his forces to invade Syria, Russia's leader pecks out a plea to the American people in the New York Times.

Then, on the eve of a fateful vote in the US Congress on Obama's decision to launch strikes against Syrian leader Bashar al-Assad, Putin mediates by instigating a proposal for Syria to surrender all chemical weapons.

This was too much for the gilded world order; the gloves had to come off. Meanwhile, Obama and his CIA had already created the proxy war against Assad. But the American people were never told.

Funny isn't it, how overt Putin moves are eviler than covert killing by America? But Russia's leader became the alchemist of truth, look at his words of warning on alleged gas attacks back then:

"We believe that at the very least we should wait for the results of the UN inspection commission in Syria. I've already said I find it absolutely ridiculous that [Syrian] government's armed forces, which today are actually on an offense mission and in some regions have already encircled the so-called rebels and are finishing them off, that the Syrian army has used prohibited chemical weapons."

Almost a year passed until I first learned of the "hell bent" onslaught on anything attached to Vladimir Putin and Russia when the 2014 Sochi Olympics rolled around. The bristling gay globalists had no intention of letting the Russia people welcome the world to their country. Putin had to pay for his past daring.

So, Russia bashing took on a whole new meaning. Bad sportsmanship was also redefined when a people created a showpiece and an unparalleled spectacle, only to be insulted and criticized at every turn. Dog packs, unworking toilets, gay skier hunts, unfinished hotels, an environmental catastrophe once again wrought by our ghastly arch villain. The world order taught Putin a lesson in those days. "Mess with us, and we'll piss on your parade."

This was the message. Then the Euromaidan and an illegal regime change in the midst of an Olympics forced diabolical Putin's hand again. Instead of allowing Russia's most strategic position in the southwest to be taken over by NATO, he instead chose to secure it without firing a shot. Crimea should have been seeded to the global hegemony – but Putin dared to resist. For shame.

Since 2014 Vladimir Putin has been blamed for the downing of Malaysian Airlines flight MH17 and without a smidgen of proof. He's had the gall to ask the world order "Do you even realize what you have done?" And this, before the mighty United Nations and in front of God and everybody else. Our crystal ball at The Economist proclaimed "Putin declares war on the West," and we believed them.

He revealed the United States was backing terrorism in the Middle East, and then he televised his forces destroying ISIS. In 2016 NBC News proclaimed; " US Officials: Putin Personally Involved in US Election Hack ." Amazingly, no pictures of Putin using his laptop to hack the DNC emerged.

And the people of the world failed to notice the lack of evidence. For nearly two years now the world has investigated Putin over alleged tampering in the US election. Can you guess what body of evidence has been shown officially or in the media?

Damn that Putin for being so flawless and diabolical a villain! His utter control of every evil deed on planet Earth is being hidden from us. And oh, so skillfully that armies of brilliant private eyes, investigative journalists, whistleblowers, think tanks, the CIA, the NSA, MI6, GCHQ, Mossad, the Pentagon, Naval Intelligence, Senate committees, or even David Copperfield can turn over one leaf of evidence.

This, my friends, is Putin's greatest delinquency against humanity. He is guilty as sin of the real delinquency, the sin of ancient logic. The reason there we cannot see proof of Putin's misdeeds is stunningly simple.

There is no proof.

Phil Butler, is a policy investigator and analyst, a political scientist and expert on Eastern Europe, he's an author of the recent bestseller " Putin's Praetorians " and other books. He writes exclusively for the online magazine "New Eastern Outlook."

[Apr 24, 2018] Class and how they use words to hide reality

Highly recommended!
Notable quotes:
"... For example, when a Republican talks about "freedom" they don't mean "freedom from want". They mean "freedom from government oppression", but only government oppression. ..."
"... Democrats act the same way about different things. When a Democrat says "diversity", they only mean diversity of race, gender, or sexual orientation. Diversity of ideas? Diversity of class? Not so much. When a Democrat says "privilege" it refers to "white" and "male". Privilege of wealth? (i.e. like the dictionary definition) That generally gets forgotten. ..."
"... -- Preamble to the Constitution of the Industrial Workers Of The World (IWW) ..."
"... @thanatokephaloides ..."
"... -- Preamble to the Constitution of the Industrial Workers Of The World (IWW) ..."
"... @longtalldrink ..."
"... @longtalldrink ..."
"... @Lily O Lady ..."
"... @Lily O Lady ..."
"... @longtalldrink ..."
"... @lizzyh7 ..."
"... @dkmich ..."
Apr 24, 2018 | caucus99percent.com

gjohnsit on Wed, 04/18/2018 - 11:45pm

I've come to realize that there's a lot of confusion out there due to people using words with very specific definitions.

For example, when a Republican talks about "freedom" they don't mean "freedom from want". They mean "freedom from government oppression", but only government oppression.

Private oppression? Republicans will either deny it exists, or justify it. When a Republican is "pro-life" it only refers to birth. Because those very same pro-life people are generally pro-war and pro-death penalty.

Democrats act the same way about different things. When a Democrat says "diversity", they only mean diversity of race, gender, or sexual orientation. Diversity of ideas? Diversity of class? Not so much. When a Democrat says "privilege" it refers to "white" and "male". Privilege of wealth? (i.e. like the dictionary definition) That generally gets forgotten.

And then there is the bipartisan misuse of words, which revolves around war and wealth.
When they say "humanitarian war" they mean, um, some contradictory concepts that are meaningless, but are designed to make you feel a certain way.
When they say "socialism" they really mean "state oppression" regardless of the economic system.
As for the many version of socialism with minimal or non-existent central governments? Or when socialist programs work? No one talks about them.

Let's not forget substituting or mixing up "middle class" for "working class".
"Working class" now equals "poor", which isn't right.
They use "working class" as a smear too.
When you say "working class" some people automatically insert certain words in front of it, as if it's generally understood.

When many hear discussion of outreach to "working class" voters, they silently add the words "white" and "male" and all too often imagine them working on a factory floor or in construction. They shouldn't. According to another analysis by CAP from late last year, just under 6 in 10 members of the working class are white, and the group is almost half female (46 percent).

The topic of the needs and interests of the working class is usually race and gender neutral. Only the dishonest or indoctrinated can't wrap their minds around that fact.This is important because working class values don't require a race or gender lens.

a new report released today by the Center for American Progress makes a convincing argument, using extensive polling data, that this divide does not need to exist. As it turns out, in many cases, voters -- both college educated and working class, and of all races -- are in favor of an economic agenda that would offer them broader protections whether it comes to work, sickness or retirement.
"The polling shows that workers across race support similar views on economic policy issues," said David Madland, the co-author of the report, entitled "The Working-Class Push for Progressive Economic Policies." "They support a higher minimum wage, higher taxes on the wealthy, and more spending on healthcare and retirement. There is broad support among workers for progressive economic policy."

This shows that it's possible to make economic issues front and center in a campaign platform in a way that doesn't just talk to working class whites and dismisses the concerns of female and minority voters. It also shows that the oft-discussed dilemma among Democrats -- whether to prioritize college educated voters or working class ones -- may be a false choice.

Propaganda is all about false choices. To accomplish this, the media has created a world in which the working class exist only in the margins .

With the working class largely unrepresented in the media, or represented only in supporting roles, is it any wonder that people begin to identify in ways other than their class? Which is exactly what the ruling class wants .

I can't believe I used to fall for this nonsense! It takes a stupendous level of cognitive dissonance to simultaneously celebrate the fortunes of someone from a specific identity while looking past the vast sea of people from said identity who are stuck in gut-wrenching poverty. We pop champagnes for the neo-gentry while disregarding our own tribulations. It's the most stunning form of logical jujitsu establishment shills have successfully conditioned us to accept; instead of gauging the health of the economy and the vitality of our nation based on the collective whole, we have been hoodwinked to accept the elevation of a few as success for us all.
Diversity has become a scam and nothing more than a corporate bamboozle and a federated scheme that is used to hide the true nature of crony capitalism. We have become a Potemkin society where tokens are put on the stage to represent equality while the vast majority of Americans are enslaved by diminishing wages or kneecapped into dependency. The whole of our politics has been turned into an identity-driven hustle. On both sides of the aisle and at every corner of the social divide are grievance whisperers and demagogues who keep spewing fuel on the fire of tribalism. They use our pains and suffering to make millions only to turn their backs on us the minute they attain riches and status.

It's only when you see an article written by the ruling elite, or one that identifies with the ruling elite, that you realize just how out-of-touch they can be. The rich really are different - they are sociopaths. They've totally and completely bought into their own righteousness, merit and virtue .

Class ascendance led me to become what Susan Jacoby classifies in her recent New York Times Op-Ed "Stop Apologizing for Being Elite" as an "elite": a vague description of a group of people who have received advanced degrees. Jacoby urges elites to reject the shame that they have supposedly recently developed, a shame that somehow stems from failing to stop the working class from embracing Trumpism. Jacoby laments that, following the 2016 election, these elites no longer take pride in their wealth, their education, their social status, and posits that if only elites embraced their upward mobility, the working class would have something to aspire to and thus discard their fondness for Trump and his promises to save them.

That level of condescension just blows my mind. It occurred to me some time ago that I have much more in common with a working class slob in France, or Mexico, or Brazil, or Russia, than I do with the wealthy elite in my own country. Don't think that the wealthy haven't figured that out too.

Pricknick on Thu, 04/19/2018 - 12:03am
Condescension.

That is the only word you need pay attention to.
I am inferior therefore expendable.
How the lofty will fail. They will succumb to those who are lessor in their minds.
Nice post gjohn.

Wink on Thu, 04/19/2018 - 4:11pm
And posted as a pod,

sort of, at... Patreon.com/C99
@Pricknick

That is the only word you need pay attention to.
I am inferior therefore expendable.
How the lofty will fail. They will succumb to those who are lessor in their minds.
Nice post gjohn.

thanatokephaloides on Thu, 04/19/2018 - 12:13am
the working class and the employing class have nothing in common

It occurred to me some time ago that I have much more in common with a working class slob in France, or Mexico, or Brazil, or Russia, than a do with the wealthy elite in my own country.
Don't think that the wealthy haven't figured that out too.

The working class and the employing class have nothing in common.
There can be no peace so long as hunger and want are found among
millions of the working people and the few, who make up the employing
class, have all the good things of life.

-- Preamble to the Constitution of the Industrial Workers Of The World (IWW)
source

QMS on Thu, 04/19/2018 - 8:17pm
over generalized

@thanatokephaloides I have been a worker and an employer for most of my career. I associate with many of the same ilk. None of us working / employer types can afford to hire the millions of under employed. Maybe a few here and there. We are not wealthy, nor are we taking advantage of the poor. Try to put this lofty idealism into perspective.

It occurred to me some time ago that I have much more in common with a working class slob in France, or Mexico, or Brazil, or Russia, than a do with the wealthy elite in my own country.
Don't think that the wealthy haven't figured that out too.

The working class and the employing class have nothing in common.
There can be no peace so long as hunger and want are found among
millions of the working people and the few, who make up the employing
class, have all the good things of life.

-- Preamble to the Constitution of the Industrial Workers Of The World (IWW)
source

earthling1 on Thu, 04/19/2018 - 12:18am
Their heads will look real fine

on a pike.

Meteor Man on Thu, 04/19/2018 - 12:30am
The Working-Class Push for Progressive Economic Policies

Somebody at CAP may be out of a job. I tried to find the report and came up empty. Can you provide the link? Thx.

The Aspie Corner on Thu, 04/19/2018 - 7:56am
But 'Murica is a classless society..../s

My ass. Class was a huge factor in 2016 (And still is) and working class issues were utterly ignored.

https://www.youtube.com/embed/-jjrSWCgJus?modestbranding=0&html5=1&rel=0&autoplay=0&wmode=opaque&loop=0&controls=1&autohide=0&showinfo=0&theme=dark&color=red&enablejsapi=0

longtalldrink on Thu, 04/19/2018 - 2:25pm
And let us not forget Occupy Wallstreet

was the continuation of the Poor People's Campaign. We are all still in dire straights.

Lily O Lady on Thu, 04/19/2018 - 11:09am
I up-voted you but

@longtalldrink @longtalldrink
that's " dire ." Sorry, I couldn't help myself.

was the continuation of the Poor People's Campaign. We are all still in dire straights.

thanatokephaloides on Thu, 04/19/2018 - 1:33pm
dyer

@Lily O Lady

I up-voted you but that's "dire." Sorry, I couldn't help myself.

A "dyer" is one who applies dyes.

"Dire" is a synonym for desperate. And it applies to our situation.

#6 #6
that's " dire ." Sorry, I couldn't help myself.

longtalldrink on Thu, 04/19/2018 - 2:21pm
Ugh

@Lily O Lady I saw that after I posted it and knew the grammar police would get me...yikes.

#6 #6
that's " dire ." Sorry, I couldn't help myself.

lizzyh7 on Thu, 04/19/2018 - 5:40pm
I just assumed it was

@longtalldrink a play on Dyer Straights...!

#6.1 I saw that after I posted it and knew the grammar police would get me...yikes.

longtalldrink on Thu, 04/19/2018 - 8:36pm
Actually

@lizzyh7 they were one of my favorite groups...so maybe subconsciously, this is what I was doing?

#6.1.2 a play on Dyer Straights...!

dkmich on Thu, 04/19/2018 - 12:37pm
So pay more taxes if you make more than 250K, BUT

pay $125K per kid for college if you earn more than 125K. That makes zero sense. A parent has no legal obligation to a child after age 18, but the 18 year old must include parental income if they apply for PELL. If they are included in their parents family, then the family must be legally obligated to pay for college. 18 can legally die, go to war, be incarcerated, and contractually bound, but they can't have a drink or be legally entitled to the same rights and benefits as everyone else.

Since the college-educated express less support at any price, it reeks of pettiness and tit for tat. "I paid for mine, you pay for yours." It is no wonder there is so much resentment at all levels and an economic coalition can't be formed. Somebody is always measuring who mom loves best. At no time did Bernie say a word about means testing a GD thing. It is why he was able to transcend labels.

thanatokephaloides on Thu, 04/19/2018 - 1:42pm
paid for

@dkmich

Since the college-educated express less support at any price, it reeks of pettiness and tit for tat. "I paid for mine, you pay for yours."

Especially when one considers the chances of that being true are really quite small.

Contrary to the Randian beLIEf, they didn't build what they have all by themselves. Society carried quite a bit of the freight here.

pay $125K per kid for college if you earn more than 125K. That makes zero sense. A parent has no legal obligation to a child after age 18, but the 18 year old must include parental income if they apply for PELL. If they are included in their parents family, then the family must be legally obligated to pay for college. 18 can legally die, go to war, be incarcerated, and contractually bound, but they can't have a drink or be legally entitled to the same rights and benefits as everyone else.

Since the college-educated express less support at any price, it reeks of pettiness and tit for tat. "I paid for mine, you pay for yours." It is no wonder there is so much resentment at all levels and an economic coalition can't be formed. Somebody is always measuring who mom loves best. At no time did Bernie say a word about means testing a GD thing. It is why he was able to transcend labels.

Snode on Thu, 04/19/2018 - 2:01pm
Thomas Edsall has an article

That starts out on disparities in housing, but rounds abouts to the "Elite Class" and the urban gentrification by corporatist democrats. It points out how the democratic party caters to this elite wing, and how the NIMBY-ism of the elites blocks affordable housing laws. It ends up with some observations:

"Taking it a step further, a Democratic Party based on urban cosmopolitan business liberalism runs the risk not only of leading to the continued marginalization of the minority poor, but also -- as the policies of the Trump administration demonstrate -- to the continued neglect of the white working-class electorate that put Trump in the White House."

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/04/19/opinion/democrats-gentrification-citi...

Lenzabi on Thu, 04/19/2018 - 2:48pm
We Can't

We really can't afford the wealthy parasite class anymore nor should we suffer their think tanks that make folks worship them and their lifestyles of indulgence and greed!

[Apr 24, 2018] Class and how they use words to hide reality

Notable quotes:
"... -- Preamble to the Constitution of the Industrial Workers Of The World (IWW) ..."
"... @thanatokephaloides ..."
"... -- Preamble to the Constitution of the Industrial Workers Of The World (IWW) ..."
"... @longtalldrink ..."
"... @longtalldrink ..."
"... @Lily O Lady ..."
"... @Lily O Lady ..."
"... @longtalldrink ..."
"... @lizzyh7 ..."
"... @dkmich ..."
Apr 24, 2018 | caucus99percent.com

gjohnsit on Wed, 04/18/2018 - 11:45pm

I've come to realize that there's a lot of confusion out there due to people using words with very specific definitions.

For example, when a Republican talks about "freedom" they don't mean "freedom from want".
They mean "freedom from government oppression", but only government oppression.
Private oppression? Republicans will either deny it exists, or justify it.
When a Republican is "pro-life" it only refers to birth.
Because those very same pro-life people are generally pro-war and pro-death penalty.

Democrats act the same way about different things.
When a Democrat says "diversity", they only mean diversity of race, gender, or sexual orientation.
Diversity of ideas? Diversity of class? Not so much.
When a Democrat says "privilege" it refers to "white" and "male".
Privilege of wealth? (i.e. like the dictionary definition) That generally gets forgotten.

And then there is the bipartisan misuse of words, which revolves around war and wealth.
When they say "humanitarian war" they mean, um, some contradictory concepts that are meaningless, but are designed to make you feel a certain way.
When they say "socialism" they really mean "state oppression" regardless of the economic system.
As for the many version of socialism with minimal or non-existent central governments? Or when socialist programs work? No one talks about them.

Let's not forget substituting or mixing up "middle class" for "working class".
"Working class" now equals "poor", which isn't right.
They use "working class" as a smear too.
When you say "working class" some people automatically insert certain words in front of it, as if it's generally understood.

When many hear discussion of outreach to "working class" voters, they silently add the words "white" and "male" and all too often imagine them working on a factory floor or in construction. They shouldn't. According to another analysis by CAP from late last year, just under 6 in 10 members of the working class are white, and the group is almost half female (46 percent).

The topic of the needs and interests of the working class is usually race and gender neutral. Only the dishonest or indoctrinated can't wrap their minds around that fact.This is important because working class values don't require a race or gender lens.

a new report released today by the Center for American Progress makes a convincing argument, using extensive polling data, that this divide does not need to exist. As it turns out, in many cases, voters -- both college educated and working class, and of all races -- are in favor of an economic agenda that would offer them broader protections whether it comes to work, sickness or retirement.
"The polling shows that workers across race support similar views on economic policy issues," said David Madland, the co-author of the report, entitled "The Working-Class Push for Progressive Economic Policies." "They support a higher minimum wage, higher taxes on the wealthy, and more spending on healthcare and retirement. There is broad support among workers for progressive economic policy."

This shows that it's possible to make economic issues front and center in a campaign platform in a way that doesn't just talk to working class whites and dismisses the concerns of female and minority voters. It also shows that the oft-discussed dilemma among Democrats -- whether to prioritize college educated voters or working class ones -- may be a false choice.

Propaganda is all about false choices. To accomplish this, the media has created a world in which the working class exist only in the margins .

With the working class largely unrepresented in the media, or represented only in supporting roles, is it any wonder that people begin to identify in ways other than their class? Which is exactly what the ruling class wants .

I can't believe I used to fall for this nonsense! It takes a stupendous level of cognitive dissonance to simultaneously celebrate the fortunes of someone from a specific identity while looking past the vast sea of people from said identity who are stuck in gut-wrenching poverty. We pop champagnes for the neo-gentry while disregarding our own tribulations. It's the most stunning form of logical jujitsu establishment shills have successfully conditioned us to accept; instead of gauging the health of the economy and the vitality of our nation based on the collective whole, we have been hoodwinked to accept the elevation of a few as success for us all.
Diversity has become a scam and nothing more than a corporate bamboozle and a federated scheme that is used to hide the true nature of crony capitalism. We have become a Potemkin society where tokens are put on the stage to represent equality while the vast majority of Americans are enslaved by diminishing wages or kneecapped into dependency. The whole of our politics has been turned into an identity-driven hustle. On both sides of the aisle and at every corner of the social divide are grievance whisperers and demagogues who keep spewing fuel on the fire of tribalism. They use our pains and suffering to make millions only to turn their backs on us the minute they attain riches and status.

It's only when you see an article written by the ruling elite, or one that identifies with the ruling elite, that you realize just how out-of-touch they can be. The rich really are different - they are sociopaths. They've totally and completely bought into their own righteousness, merit and virtue .

Class ascendance led me to become what Susan Jacoby classifies in her recent New York Times Op-Ed "Stop Apologizing for Being Elite" as an "elite": a vague description of a group of people who have received advanced degrees. Jacoby urges elites to reject the shame that they have supposedly recently developed, a shame that somehow stems from failing to stop the working class from embracing Trumpism. Jacoby laments that, following the 2016 election, these elites no longer take pride in their wealth, their education, their social status, and posits that if only elites embraced their upward mobility, the working class would have something to aspire to and thus discard their fondness for Trump and his promises to save them.

That level of condescension just blows my mind. It occurred to me some time ago that I have much more in common with a working class slob in France, or Mexico, or Brazil, or Russia, than I do with the wealthy elite in my own country. Don't think that the wealthy haven't figured that out too.

Pricknick on Thu, 04/19/2018 - 12:03am
Condescension.

That is the only word you need pay attention to.
I am inferior therefore expendable.
How the lofty will fail. They will succumb to those who are lessor in their minds.
Nice post gjohn.

Wink on Thu, 04/19/2018 - 4:11pm
And posted as a pod,

sort of, at... Patreon.com/C99
@Pricknick

That is the only word you need pay attention to.
I am inferior therefore expendable.
How the lofty will fail. They will succumb to those who are lessor in their minds.
Nice post gjohn.

thanatokephaloides on Thu, 04/19/2018 - 12:13am
the working class and the employing class have nothing in common

It occurred to me some time ago that I have much more in common with a working class slob in France, or Mexico, or Brazil, or Russia, than a do with the wealthy elite in my own country.
Don't think that the wealthy haven't figured that out too.

The working class and the employing class have nothing in common.
There can be no peace so long as hunger and want are found among
millions of the working people and the few, who make up the employing
class, have all the good things of life.

-- Preamble to the Constitution of the Industrial Workers Of The World (IWW)
source

QMS on Thu, 04/19/2018 - 8:17pm
over generalized

@thanatokephaloides I have been a worker and an employer for most of my career. I associate with many of the same ilk. None of us working / employer types can afford to hire the millions of under employed. Maybe a few here and there. We are not wealthy, nor are we taking advantage of the poor. Try to put this lofty idealism into perspective.

It occurred to me some time ago that I have much more in common with a working class slob in France, or Mexico, or Brazil, or Russia, than a do with the wealthy elite in my own country.
Don't think that the wealthy haven't figured that out too.

The working class and the employing class have nothing in common.
There can be no peace so long as hunger and want are found among
millions of the working people and the few, who make up the employing
class, have all the good things of life.

-- Preamble to the Constitution of the Industrial Workers Of The World (IWW)
source

earthling1 on Thu, 04/19/2018 - 12:18am
Their heads will look real fine

on a pike.

Meteor Man on Thu, 04/19/2018 - 12:30am
The Working-Class Push for Progressive Economic Policies

Somebody at CAP may be out of a job. I tried to find the report and came up empty. Can you provide the link? Thx.

The Aspie Corner on Thu, 04/19/2018 - 7:56am
But 'Murica is a classless society..../s

My ass. Class was a huge factor in 2016 (And still is) and working class issues were utterly ignored.

https://www.youtube.com/embed/-jjrSWCgJus?modestbranding=0&html5=1&rel=0&autoplay=0&wmode=opaque&loop=0&controls=1&autohide=0&showinfo=0&theme=dark&color=red&enablejsapi=0

longtalldrink on Thu, 04/19/2018 - 2:25pm
And let us not forget Occupy Wallstreet

was the continuation of the Poor People's Campaign. We are all still in dire straights.

Lily O Lady on Thu, 04/19/2018 - 11:09am
I up-voted you but

@longtalldrink @longtalldrink
that's " dire ." Sorry, I couldn't help myself.

was the continuation of the Poor People's Campaign. We are all still in dire straights.

thanatokephaloides on Thu, 04/19/2018 - 1:33pm
dyer

@Lily O Lady

I up-voted you but that's "dire." Sorry, I couldn't help myself.

A "dyer" is one who applies dyes.

"Dire" is a synonym for desperate. And it applies to our situation.

#6 #6
that's " dire ." Sorry, I couldn't help myself.

longtalldrink on Thu, 04/19/2018 - 2:21pm
Ugh

@Lily O Lady I saw that after I posted it and knew the grammar police would get me...yikes.

#6 #6
that's " dire ." Sorry, I couldn't help myself.

lizzyh7 on Thu, 04/19/2018 - 5:40pm
I just assumed it was

@longtalldrink a play on Dyer Straights...!

#6.1 I saw that after I posted it and knew the grammar police would get me...yikes.

longtalldrink on Thu, 04/19/2018 - 8:36pm
Actually

@lizzyh7 they were one of my favorite groups...so maybe subconsciously, this is what I was doing?

#6.1.2 a play on Dyer Straights...!

dkmich on Thu, 04/19/2018 - 12:37pm
So pay more taxes if you make more than 250K, BUT

pay $125K per kid for college if you earn more than 125K. That makes zero sense. A parent has no legal obligation to a child after age 18, but the 18 year old must include parental income if they apply for PELL. If they are included in their parents family, then the family must be legally obligated to pay for college. 18 can legally die, go to war, be incarcerated, and contractually bound, but they can't have a drink or be legally entitled to the same rights and benefits as everyone else.

Since the college-educated express less support at any price, it reeks of pettiness and tit for tat. "I paid for mine, you pay for yours." It is no wonder there is so much resentment at all levels and an economic coalition can't be formed. Somebody is always measuring who mom loves best. At no time did Bernie say a word about means testing a GD thing. It is why he was able to transcend labels.

thanatokephaloides on Thu, 04/19/2018 - 1:42pm
paid for

@dkmich

Since the college-educated express less support at any price, it reeks of pettiness and tit for tat. "I paid for mine, you pay for yours."

Especially when one considers the chances of that being true are really quite small.

Contrary to the Randian beLIEf, they didn't build what they have all by themselves. Society carried quite a bit of the freight here.

pay $125K per kid for college if you earn more than 125K. That makes zero sense. A parent has no legal obligation to a child after age 18, but the 18 year old must include parental income if they apply for PELL. If they are included in their parents family, then the family must be legally obligated to pay for college. 18 can legally die, go to war, be incarcerated, and contractually bound, but they can't have a drink or be legally entitled to the same rights and benefits as everyone else.

Since the college-educated express less support at any price, it reeks of pettiness and tit for tat. "I paid for mine, you pay for yours." It is no wonder there is so much resentment at all levels and an economic coalition can't be formed. Somebody is always measuring who mom loves best. At no time did Bernie say a word about means testing a GD thing. It is why he was able to transcend labels.

Snode on Thu, 04/19/2018 - 2:01pm
Thomas Edsall has an article

That starts out on disparities in housing, but rounds abouts to the "Elite Class" and the urban gentrification by corporatist democrats. It points out how the democratic party caters to this elite wing, and how the NIMBY-ism of the elites blocks affordable housing laws. It ends up with some observations:

"Taking it a step further, a Democratic Party based on urban cosmopolitan business liberalism runs the risk not only of leading to the continued marginalization of the minority poor, but also -- as the policies of the Trump administration demonstrate -- to the continued neglect of the white working-class electorate that put Trump in the White House."

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/04/19/opinion/democrats-gentrification-citi...

Lenzabi on Thu, 04/19/2018 - 2:48pm
We Can't

We really can't afford the wealthy parasite class anymore nor should we suffer their think tanks that make folks worship them and their lifestyles of indulgence and greed!

[Apr 24, 2018] Constant and persistent nudging generally results in an angry backlash. Somewhere around when a person realizes "This is not where I wanted to be." That's now very true for neoclassic economy courses. Many students understand the game and hate it

Notable quotes:
"... cognitive infiltration ..."
Apr 24, 2018 | www.nakedcapitalism.com

Yves Smith, April 21, 2018 at 12:26 pm

Nudge was the title of a book by Richard Thaler and Cass Sunstein on how to manipulate people in their supposed best interest, like in cafeteria lines, to put whole fruit before desserts made with sugar.

See here for more detail:

blennylips , April 21, 2018 at 1:49 pm

If you liked Nudge , you'll love " cognitive infiltration ":

Conspiracy Theories
Harvard Public Law Working Paper No. 08-03

Because those who hold conspiracy theories typically suffer from a crippled epistemology, in accordance with which it is rational to hold such theories, the best response consists in cognitive infiltration of extremist groups. Various policy dilemmas, such as the question whether it is better for government to rebut conspiracy theories or to ignore them, are explored in this light.
Keywords: conspiracy theories, social networks, informational cascades, group polarization
https://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=1084585

Is not this what discerning MIC's all do these days, via FBI FB?

Synoia , April 21, 2018 at 11:25 am

A nudge too far?

Constant and persistent nudging generally results in an angry backlash. Somewhere around when a person realizes "This is not where I wanted to be."

JTMcPhee , April 21, 2018 at 12:40 pm

And of course we mopes have been "nudged" into pretty much that blind serfdom alluded to. Back in the Cave, with not much chance of dispelling the belief in and subjection to the shadows projected on the wall we are forced to face

oaf , April 21, 2018 at 1:52 pm

manipulation is the sowing of a Karmic garden

Tom_Doak , April 21, 2018 at 6:09 pm

The classic nudge example is opting you into a 401(k) unless you opt out.

That's supposedly better for you but it is DEFINITELY better for the brokerage handling your account.

none , April 21, 2018 at 10:01 pm

I had to look it up: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nudge_theory

I hadn't heard of it before.

Tyronius , April 22, 2018 at 12:21 am

I rather detest the notion of someone or entity 'nudging' me in the direction of some behavior, especially in a paternalistic mode where the assumption is that they know better than I what I 'should' be doing or thinking.

On one level, isn't that a working definition of advertising? On another, it smacks of authoritarianism. Don't we have enough of this kind of thing already? Worse, what's the first reaction one naturally has when they realize they're being manipulated? Seems to be a strategy fraught with risk of getting exactly the wrong response.

If I'm to be encouraged to behave in a given way, show me the respect of offering a conscious, intelligent argument to do so on the merits, or kindly go (family blog) yourself!

Anti-Schmoo , April 23, 2018 at 4:18 am

In economics, the single most important thing to understand is debt.
If you understand debt; you won't have any debt.
Debt and freedom are the antithisis of each other.
Without debt; nudges have no influence.

Anti-Schmoo , April 23, 2018 at 4:24 am

A follow up:
https://www.esquire.com/lifestyle/money/a19181300/nassim-nicholas-taleb-money-advice/
A very frank discussion of debt and freedom.

[Apr 23, 2018] The Tony Blair Rule: The Truth Takes 15 Years to Come Out, Skripal Countdown Starts Now - Simonyan

Highly recommended!
Yes 15 years s about right for false flag operations.
Apr 23, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

I just posted a link to a Vesti clip at the end of the previous thread, because it seems so relevant to b's message about the western crackdown on free speech in this information war. This open thread is coming so close on the heels of that wonderful article, that I want to double-post here as well as there.

Margarita Simonyan of RT says how she's trying to talk, not to power but to common people, because there are those among the common people who do speak up and who really do shape public opinion - not governments. She cited Roger Waters as an example, who was speaking at a concert and telling the truth about the White Helmets.

She said, someone has to read in order to speak. And someone has to write so someone can read:


The Tony Blair Rule: The Truth Takes 15 Years to Come Out, Skripal Countdown Starts Now - Simonyan

Posted by: Grieved | Apr 22, 2018 9:53:58 PM | 54

[Apr 22, 2018] The American ruling class loves Identity Politics, because Identity Politics divides the people into hostile groups and prevents any resistance to the ruling elite

Highly recommended!
The quotes are from A Conversation on Race, by Paul Craig Roberts - The Unz Review
Notable quotes:
"... The American ruling class loves Identity Politics, because Identity Politics divides the people into hostile groups and prevents any resistance to the ruling elite. With blacks screaming at whites, women screaming at men, and homosexuals screaming at heterosexuals, there is no one left to scream at the rulers. ..."
"... Consequently, the ruling elite have funded "black history," "women's studies," and "transgender dialogues," in universities as a way to institutionalize the divisiveness that protects them. These "studies" have replaced real history with fake history. ..."
Apr 22, 2018 | www.unz.com

Steve Gittelson , April 19, 2018 at 2:43 am GMT

PCR's latest is really good. I love it when he gets to ripping, and doesn't stop for 2000+ words or so. It reads a lot better than Toynbee, fersher.

The working class, designated by Hillary Clinton as "the Trump deplorables," is now the victimizer, not the victim. Marxism has been stood on its head.

The American ruling class loves Identity Politics, because Identity Politics divides the people into hostile groups and prevents any resistance to the ruling elite. With blacks screaming at whites, women screaming at men, and homosexuals screaming at heterosexuals, there is no one left to scream at the rulers.

The ruling elite favors a "conversation on race," because the ruling elite know it can only result in accusations that will further divide society. Consequently, the ruling elite have funded "black history," "women's studies," and "transgender dialogues," in universities as a way to institutionalize the divisiveness that protects them. These "studies" have replaced real history with fake history.

Steve Gittelson , April 19, 2018 at 3:59 pm GMT

Just a bit more real truth from PCR. Carry on

All of America, indeed of the entire West, lives in The Matrix, a concocted [and false] reality. Western peoples are so propagandized, so brainwashed, that they have no understanding that their disunity was created in order to make them impotent in the face of a rapacious ruling class, a class whose arrogance and hubris has the world on the brink of nuclear Armageddon.

History as it actually happened is disappearing as those who tell the truth are dismissed as misogynists, racists, homophobes, Putin agents, terrorist sympathizers, anti-Semites, and conspiracy theorists. Liberals who complained mightily of McCarthyism now practice it ten-fold.

The United States with its brainwashed and incompetent population -- indeed, the entirety of the Western populations are incompetent -- and with its absence of intelligent leadership has no chance against Russia and China, two massive countries arising from their overthrow of police states as the West descends into a gestapo state. The West is over and done with. Nothing remains of the West but the lies used to control the people. All hope is elsewhere.

[Apr 20, 2018] How neoliberal MSM twist facts

Apr 20, 2018 | discussion.theguardian.com

Ruby4 , 13 Apr 2018 14:15

Labour calls for the attack on Douma to be "fully investigated". That sounds unarguable. But then what? Jeremy Corbyn issued the same call after the chemical attack that killed at least 74 at Khan Sheikhoun a year ago: demanding there be a "UN investigation and those responsible be held to account". The UN duly investigated and in October concluded unambiguously that the Assad regime had used sarin gas. But Corbyn greeted that verdict with silence.

The report that Mr Freedland provides a link to, actually says:

"5. While the OPCW Fact-Finding Mission in the Syrian Arab Republic works to establish the facts surrounding allegations of the use of toxic chemicals for hostile purposes in the country, it is not mandated to reach conclusions about attributing responsibility for chemical weapons use. 1 Following a determination by the FactFinding Mission that a specific incident in the Syrian Arab Republic involved or likely involved the use of chemicals as weapons, the Mechanism conducts an investigation to identify, to the greatest extent feasible, the perpetrators, organizers, sponsors or those otherwise involved. In conducting its investigation, the Mechanism relies on findings of the Fact-Finding Mission regarding the use of chemicals as weapons in each incident and pursues a rigorous independent examination of the available information surrounding such use so as to identify, to the greatest extent feasible, those responsible."

It doesn't appear to be claiming to be concluding "unambiguously that the Assad regime had used sarin gas." Am I missing something here?

Mr Freedland's allegation that "Corbyn greeted that verdict with silence" is highly suspect:

"RT:Today, Moscow says it has evidence that rebels have used sarin gas. Earlier Britain said that Assad forces were behind the chemical attack. But why didn't Britain and the US come forward with the same sort of hard evidence that Russia has come forward with?

JC: That's an interesting question. I can't speak for the British or the US governments, but they made these allegations about the use of chemical weapons – and there are apparently stocks of chemical weapons being held in Syria, which may well have fallen into opposition hands, or may still be in government hands, or maybe both – but the assertion was made that they had been used. But no hard evidence came up, and indeed, there was a great deal of skepticism surrounding the evidence that was never presented. And the Russian evidence today appears much stronger, and they said they were going to put that evidence in the hands of the United Nations - that has got to be a good thing. However, proving or not proving this doesn't end the crisis, there has to be the rapid resumption of talks by Geneva too, all parties must be involved – including Iran. If we're to bring about a settlement, there's got to be involvement of Iran, as well as all the different parties in Syria."

https://www.rt.com/op-ed/syria-chemical-weapons-evidence-926 /

[Apr 18, 2018] The Rape of Russia, an Interview with F. William Engdahl (Audio)

Notable quotes:
"... What the US Government under George Herbert Walker Bush, Bush Senior organised together with CIA, old boy networks of his, in terms of the breaking up of the Soviet Union and the looting of the assets, this open theft, the destruction of pensions, security, the health system and everything. The only appropriate word is the rape of Russia. They just pondered anything that they could. ..."
"... And the West, the Bush networks recruited a handful of KGB agents around Yeltsin who literally promoted Yeltsin to the top when they engineered the August 1991 fake coup. ..."
"... And through that the – this network, this corrupt network within the KGB that was working with the CIA, working with General Philip, Bob [unclear] is one of them, so called at that time the KGB brain. He was head of the KGB Fifth Directorate controlling to roll this in. ..."
"... They engineered a complete opening up of the assets of the Russian Federation which called today the Russian Federation, the largest part of the former Soviet Union and they made it such that the Russian Federation would assume all of the debts of Ukraine, of Kazakhstan and the other socialist republics of the Soviet and all the assets, all the crucial assets that were within the Russian Federation so the aluminium Rusal that's in the headlines yesterday, the nickel, the oil, the gas, just hundreds of billions if not trillions of dollars' worth of assets that came into Yeltsin's control. ..."
"... Soros was very intermittently tied with Jeffrey Sachs and the whole Harvard to become a shock therapy group and working with Lawrence Summers team at the US Treasury under Clinton. ..."
"... So, Chubais was as an adviser to Yeltsin at that time and the key person on the economy arranged the secret meeting with George Soros. And Soros agreed to finance of course on behalf of Yeltsin, the referendum campaign. So he funnelled money over a million dollars by some accounts to offshore accounts set up to be used by Chubais to buy media. ..."
"... In 1989 President George H. W. Bush began the multi-billion dollar Project Hammer program using an investment strategy to bring about the economic destruction of the Soviet Union including the theft of the Soviet treasury, the destabilization of the ruble, funding a KGB coup against Gorbachev in August 1991 and the seizure of major energy and munitions industries in the Soviet Union. ..."
"... Given the depth of the fall, the rise (under Putin) has been remarkable. ..."
Apr 18, 2018 | russia-insider.com

The Rape of Russia (full transcript)

Lars Schall: Hello ladies and gentlemen. I am now connected with F. William Engdahl, who has written a new book, Manifest Destiny: Democracy as Cognitive Dissonance. Hi William.

F. William Engdahl: Hello, Lars. Good to be with you again.

LS: Great to have you with us. And first off, let me read something to you and our audience that was written by the economist Dean Baker earlier this month.

As a long-term columnist at the NYT, Thomas Friedman apparently never feels the need to know anything about the topics on which he writes. This explains his sarcastic speculation that Putin could be a CIA agent since he has done so much to hurt Russia.

For all his authoritarian tendencies, it is likely that most Russians think primarily about Putin's impact on the economy, just as is typically the case among voters in the United States. On that front, Putin has a very good record.

According to data from the IMF Russia's economy had plunged in the 1990s under the Yeltsin presidency. When Putin took over in 1998, per capita income in the country had shrunk by more than 40 percent from its 1990 level. This is a far sharper downturn than the United States saw in the Great Depression. Since Putin took power its per capita income has risen by more than 115 percent, an average annual growth rate of more than 3.9 percent.

While this growth has been very unequal, that was also the case even as Russia's economy was collapsing under Yeltsin. The typical Russian has done hugely better in the last two decades under Putin than they did in the period when Yeltsin was in power.

For this reason, there are probably few Russians who would have sympathy for Friedman's speculation about Putin's ties to the CIA. The same would not be the case for Boris Yeltsin.

Now, I think this is a good starting point for our discussion William because in your book, you have a chapter entitled The Rape of Russia, the CIA's Yeltsin Coup d'état. Why do you talk about rape related to Russia?

FWE: What the US Government under George Herbert Walker Bush, Bush Senior organised together with CIA, old boy networks of his, in terms of the breaking up of the Soviet Union and the looting of the assets, this open theft, the destruction of pensions, security, the health system and everything. The only appropriate word is the rape of Russia. They just pondered anything that they could.

And what you just read from Mr. Friedman is of course horse rubbish but the real CIA asset of this whole collapse of the Soviet Union in the late 1980s was in fact Boris Yeltsin and the so called Yeltsin Family, the Yeltsin Mafia. And in my book, the Manifest Destiny book I document and detail at great lengths the relation of a handful of KGB very, very senior persons who worked with the Bush Senior old boys CIA networks in the West and their banks to create a group of oligarchs around Yeltsin, you know the famous Russian oligarchs, well, The New York Times and other Western Media portrayed them as Russian Mafia. They were kind of mafia but the real point was that they were a CIA-run mafia. They were run by the West. They betrayed their own country, their own people and literally stole billions and billions and billions of dollars of assets. And that's the reason for the title in that chapter.

LS: And Boris Yeltsin was very essential for this.

FWE: He was the key figure. He had been selected as a regional governor and brought into Moscow and a certain point Gorbachev saw him as a rising star and someone that could help with a little bit more liberal image as [unclear] was – the Russian economy was running into serious trouble in the '80s, the Star Wars of Reagan, the Nicaragua and above all the war in Afghanistan which is a CIA project with the Mujahideen, that took 10 years long that was bleeding the Soviet economy, the Soviet Union's Vietnam, as Brzezinski used to call it.

And the West, the Bush networks recruited a handful of KGB agents around Yeltsin who literally promoted Yeltsin to the top when they engineered the August 1991 fake coup. You remember, I'm sure many people remember the picture of Boris Yeltsin standing there courageously on top of a Soviet tank in front of the Russian White House or Soviet House, the Supreme Soviet building and reading a speech defying Gorbachev and so forth. Well, that was a KGB CIA-engineered coup d'état in June 1991. And through that the – this network, this corrupt network within the KGB that was working with the CIA, working with General Philip, Bob [unclear] is one of them, so called at that time the KGB brain. He was head of the KGB Fifth Directorate controlling to roll this in. And he later joined the [#inaudible 00:06:40-0#] oil and to this day he's still a member of the State Duma giving him prosecution immunity.

So, some of these people are still around after some 23, 25 years and incredibly enough but others of them have died off, have been killed, or murdered or whatever. But the operation that was done with Yeltsin, this corrupt KGB network working with the CIA financed Yeltsin's the silent seat of the presidency of the Russian Federation. And once they had their man in controlling the Russian Federation which is the largest of the former Soviet Union, the Socialist Republic, they were able to engineer through the international monetary fund that was mandated to oversee the transformation of the Soviet economy.

They engineered a complete opening up of the assets of the Russian Federation which called today the Russian Federation, the largest part of the former Soviet Union and they made it such that the Russian Federation would assume all of the debts of Ukraine, of Kazakhstan and the other socialist republics of the Soviet and all the assets, all the crucial assets that were within the Russian Federation so the aluminium Rusal that's in the headlines yesterday, the nickel, the oil, the gas, just hundreds of billions if not trillions of dollars' worth of assets that came into Yeltsin's control.

LS: But those assets were sold to a price that was rather ridiculous.

FWE: Someone estimated that that gets into the whole coupon privatisation that was set up under Yeltsin in the '90s. The coupon privatisation issued one coupon to every single Russian man, woman and child 140 million in total. And the value of those coupons was such someone estimated that the totality of Russian Soviet's Fed assets or Russian Federation assets now was equal to the value of the stock at that point of General Electric Company on the New York Stock Exchange. I mean that's just laughable. Russia had financial bankruptcy because the shock therapy, the Jeffrey Sachs and others from Harvard and elsewhere brought in, George Soros and his pals. That created bankrupt companies that couldn't stand on their own and suddenly they had no, no resources. But the assets, the assets on the ground, the nickel, the aluminium, the uranium that Hillary Clinton knows more than a little bit about them, all of these were estimated to be in the trillions of dollars. And this is what the Bush operation aimed at. And they used NGOs, they used the National Endowment for Democracy, they used, George Soros' Open Society Foundation and so forth to bring this about.

LS: You've mentioned already the coup d'etat attempt of August 1991. Highly important for things to come was something that took place in early 1991 and that was the theft of the Soviet gold. Please tell us about this.

FWE: The, under the Soviet Union, this is a very crucial point about the transition that Washington forced on the Russian Federation because Yeltsin was, I think as long as he was well-supplied with vodka he didn't protest very much. But under the Soviet system and the Russian Federation took this over, there was a state bank, not a private central bank like the Federal Reserve or the European Central Bank today but a state bank that was an entity of the Russian State apparatus and that was called the Gosbank. And a man named Viktor Gerashchenko was the chairman of Gosbank at the time of Yeltsin's early start in 1991.

And Gerashchenko made a speech around that time in November of '91 to the Russian Duma or the parliament such as it was and said, "I have to report to you ladies and gentlemen that of perhaps 3,000 tons of Gosbank state-owned gold reserves, we have an estimated less than 400 tons that we can account for." And then he had to go to tell, shock members of parliament that he had no idea what happened to the missing gold, which of course was a lie. And Gerashchenko had created right after 1989 to prepare this coup d'etat coup, which was the CIA and Bush's old boys, he had created something called [unclear] on the Channel Islands in the Island of Jersey to handle the Russian foreign currency reserves.

And the Jersey was exempt from European supervision, so this was a perfect place to hide money, dirty money or stolen money and they managed something like $37 billion between 1993 and 1998. The Gerashchenko and the Gosbank even went to the lengths of hiring a New York Financial Detective firm called the Financial CIA back then called Jules Kroll Associate. And they were told to track the Soviet gold, find out what happened to it and something like $14 billion of communist party assets that were missing as well. And the Cruel which was tied with the CIA linked AIG Insurance Group Hank Greenberg whom you remember from the 2008 to the bail out of Henry Paulson.

LS: Yes.

FEW: The Kroll Associates after a few months announced that they had no results in the attempt to find the missing Soviet Gosbank gold. Then to add insult to injury, the IMF came in and rewrote the constitution of the Russian Federation under Yeltsin and took the power of money creation just like the Federal Reserve took the power of money creation from the congress in 1913. They took the power of money creation from the state and created the Russian Federation Central Bank, the Russian Central Bank and gave it a mandate for two things. One, to control inflation and the other to create currency stability.

Now, in Russia that day that meant stability of the ruble against the US dollar. So it effectively hammer-locked the Russian money creation into the US dollar. And unfortunately that constitution amendment holds until the present day. It's one of the difficulties that Vladimir Putin has been having to try to persuade the Independent Central Bank to lower interest rates more rapidly as inflation is simply managed as a problem in Russia in the last two years.

So, they looted the gold so that there would be no stability to the ruble. If you don't have any gold-backing, then western investors are going to lack confidence which is sort of what happened. And then they began working with very select western bankers to get their money out of Russia.

LS: And instrumental to get money out of Russia were Valmet and Riggs. Can you tell us please about some crucial personnel that was employed there at Valmet and Riggs?

FWE: Valmet Riggs was kind of a fusion of a Swiss bank and Riggs Bank of Washington D. C. And Riggs Bank, this is really quite a fascinating and very little discussed aspect of the reign of Russia back in the '90s.

So you have something called Riggs Bank in Washington and they were set up decades earlier since the 1960s CIA Bay of Pigs operation, they were known as the CIA tied bank. They invested the assets of people like Marcos of the Philippines until when he was close to the CIA. And there was a former NATO Ambassador named Alton Keel and in 1989 when the Soviet KGB generals and they had a group of protégés called the 'Kids' by George Bush Senior. The protégés were in their 30s and a couple of them were in their 40s but rather young. And they were the ones who were nominated to become the oligarchs, the frontal men for taking these state assets the aluminium, the oil assets and other things and looting the Russian Federation.

And Alton Keel just as the Russians were setting up men at a bank for the oligarchs to funnel their stolen assets, de facto stolen assets, Keel went from NATO and the National Security Council to become a head of international banking of Riggs Bank in Washington and its deputy chairman.

Now, it gets even more interesting because the international banking group of Riggs included a new entity that had been created called Riggs Valmet SA in Switzerland, and Riggs Valmet was set up by a man named Jonathan J. Bush, a private banker, who just happened to be the brother of George Herbert Walker Bush. So, Bush brother and Alton Keel set up Riggs Valmet, there was a money laundering apparatus in Geneva and Riggs then through their help bought the major share in Geneva Valmet to create Riggs Valmet.

So, you have the brother of the president of the United States up to his eyeballs in this whole Yeltsin CIA money laundering operation. And then Jonathan Bush was created CEO of something called Riggs Investment in Connecticut where he lived and at that point the looting and taking of the dollar assets out of Russia was just unstoppable. It was in the billions and tens of billions of dollars.

LS: William, there is one guy who was working closely with those people and he was working on Wall Street but later on he was personally recruited by George Tenet then the Director of CIA to become the number three at the CIA, and this is Alvin Bernard "Buzzy" Krongard.

FWE: Yes. We meet "Buzzy" Krongard at Bankers Trust, which bought up Alex Brown, and Krongard became vice chairman of Bankers Trust along with another charming character named Carter Beese. And at the time of the 1998 collapse of the ruble, Krongard was formally made, as you've pointed out, number three, the executive director at the CIA under George Tenet. So, it's a CIA network from beginning to end, from the banking side to you know the direct CIA side. You have Carter Beast, you have "Buzzy" Krongard, Jonathan Bush and Alton Keel and they were the ones working with Valmet as the Riggs Valmet Bank in Geneva to pull this money out through shell companies.

And the oligarchs, this is an interesting part of this whole thing that you know right now Theresa May and the foreign secretary Boris Johnson in the UK are accusing Putin of murdering almost everybody since the birth of Jesus Christ. And one of them was the person who had been the trusted bodyguard of one of the oligarchs living in London Boris Berezovsky.

And Berezovsky was one of the dirtiest of these oligarchs. He'd financed the Ukrainian Colour Revolution back in 2003, 2004 as a revenge against Putin because he at first thought Putin could be bought like Yeltsin and suddenly he realized that he was up against the faction of nationalists within of what had been the KGB but wanted to stabilise and preserve Russia as a functioning nation today. And so Mikhail Khodorkovskyi, Roman Abramovich, who is listed on the sanctions list yesterday, and Berezovsky were some of the leading oligarchs that were created by this Bush operation.

LS: And to jumpstart all of this, we have to talk about something that is well, that is stranger than fiction and that is something called for example "Yamashita's Gold". If our audience is interested in this, they could for example look for an article written by Chalmers Johnson, the famous Asian expert, The Looting of Asia, which was published at the London Review of Books on the 20 th of November of 2003 because then they can find something on this topic of Yamashita's gold on an instant basis in the internet ( https://www.lrb.co.uk/v25/n22/chalmers-johnson/the-looting-of-asia ). I think this is just fair

FWE: Yeah.

LS: because no one really is aware of this whole story. Please tell us about this.

FWE: The Yamashita Gold story is one of the, as you've said really incredible stories of post-World War II. During the Second World War, the Japanese Imperial Family looted the gold of occupied Arch of China, they looted the gold of all the parts of Asia that they had conquered.

LS: Basically from 1895 to 1945.

FWE: Yeah, yeah. And because they had no guarantee that Japan was going to win the war, the emperor ordered the gold to be hidden away in, mostly in the Philippines as far as we know and literally untold tons of gold were buried so deep underground in tunnels around the Philippines and the people who dug the tunnels in many cases were later shot you know so that they couldn't tell. But Marcos who was a CIA asset initially, the dictator of the Philippines through much of the '70s and into the '80s, yeah through the '70, Ferdinand Marcos somehow came upon some of this gold. So, the Japanese looted war body was buried in the early '40s before the end of the war on orders of Emperor Hirohito should they lose the war.

And at some point in the 1970s, Marcos discovered some of the sites where Hirohito's soldiers had buried the gold and the gold was stolen from China, Korea, Philippines, Indonesia and other countries occupied by the Japanese forces. And Marcos, and I think this is the major reason the CIA dumped him, got a little bit greedy and took that gold and started selling it under the market through selective secret Swiss banks. But he used the CIA asset, the Saudi billionaire named Adnan Khashoggi to help them get the gold under the market. And what he didn't realise was that Khashoggi would double cross him. He got a better deal from Bush Senior and the old boys.

LS: We have to say Khashoggi is a figure who is involved for example in B.C.C.I. and in Iran-Contra.

FWE: Back in the '70s he was involved in everything dirty that Bush and the CIA were involved in. B.C.C.I. Bank, the money laundering bank of the CIA, the arms deals, Khashoggi was a huge arms dealer during the Iran and Iraq war the CIA was feeding. He was involved in almost every dirty thing the CIA was doing.

LS: He was aware of this gold.

FWE: Supposedly he was helping Marcos to sell the gold out of the market. So he was not only aware of it, he was right in the middle of it. But then once Marcos was tackled by the CIA Bush got rid of Marcos in 1986. Then someone named Paul Wolfowitz and Richard Armitage and Khashoggi began to work with someone in Canada to create something called – Peter Munk was his name, a rather dubious businessman there – to found something called Barrick Gold of Canada and later it went on to become the world's largest gold mining company.

But Barrick Gold, all available evidence is that buried gold was used to melt down the – I don't want to get too much into the details of this but basically to melt down the Emperor Hirohito's gold that had been discovered by Marcos in the Philippines, to melt it down and use that as collateral for derivatives that would be the collateral used to take over the Russian Federation assets.

LS: The money was basically transformed into bank loans into Russia so that the would-become oligarch people could buy up those assets

FWE: Yes, exactly. So, Yegor Gaidar, the economic privatisation adviser of Yeltsin and his sidekick Anatoly Chubais privatisation had kind of guided this whole process together with Jeffrey Sachs and a group from Harvard University. #00:28:37-8#

LS: Yeah. Let us talk about this. This is known as Harvard Shock Therapy.

FEW: Well, the Jeffrey Sachs Shock Therapy, but the Harvard shock therapy is – well, what happened, the next phase of this incredible story and it's important to keep all this in mind, this is one reason that I wrote the book because of what was clear after the CIA coup d'etat of 2014 in Ukraine and all the sanctions against Putin's Russia and so forth, that if you don't understand what really happened in the '90s, the deep-seated hatred there is on these neoconservatives around Washington and their think tanks as well as, the US political establishment for Putin's Russia and the nationalism behind group Russia. You can't make much sense out of what's going on today with all these incredible lies and accusations against Russia for every crime under the book.

So, what happened is the, as I mentioned the IMF, the International Monetary Fund which had done a beautiful job for Washington in terms of, and George Soros and others in terms of looting the assets of the dead economies of Latin America, Yugoslavia, Poland and others during the oil crisis in the 1970s. The IMF was used and a group of economists around Jeffrey Sachs, a young professor at Harvard University then to impose what Sachs called shock therapy.

And the idea was that Sachs convinced Yeltsin, let prices rise through western market prices and this will increase the supply of goods, you know the stores had a paucity of goods back in the Soviet Times and get rid of trade barriers so foreign commodities could flow in to fill the shelves of Russian stores. The problem was that was a lie. The shops had been full. Okay, you could say it wasn't Kellogg's Corn Flakes and Fried Perdue Chickens or whatever, but they were full of Russian food products until November of '91 when Yeltsin announced that the exact date on December 31 st of 1991, that price controls would be suddenly lifted. So, shop owners immediately hid their goods and waited for December 31 st . So, suddenly the shops were empty and rationing was imposed and so forth. It's just unbelievable.

So, into this, this was Jeffrey Sachs on shock therapy and a group of Harvard University under the auspices of the Harvard Institute for International Development, a group of, among other things later documented CIA agents set up shop in Moscow and worked with Yeltsin's economic team Gaidar and Yegor Gaidar and Anatoly Chubais and themselves got in on the thunder the Russian East Harvard economist working. Now we have a transition in '93 through the Clinton Administration and there former Harvard professor and former World Bank Chief Economist Lawrence Summers became the deputy secretary of treasury responsible for the looting of Russia, effective and responsible for the gold economic transition in the Russian Federation.

And all of the key actors were named by Summers and they were all involved in the privatisation of Russia. They were all from this Harvard Mafia. For example of David Lipton, a former consulting partner of the Jeffrey Sachs, became deputy assistant secretary of treasure for former Soviet Union and Eastern Europe and Sachs himself was named Director of Harvard HIID that oversaw the looting of Russia through the voucher privatisation and so forth. And they got grants from the USAID, AID works very closely with the CIA in different parts of the world, this is documented. And so it was really a tight-knit cabal around Lawrence Summers that oversaw this complete theft through these pieces of paper called privatisation coupons.

And what you had was the economic situation under Yeltsin had become so severe I mean people literally they had no jobs because of the freeing up of prices, they could afford to buy little or nothing. So, most people, millions of Russians sold their privatisation vouchers on the street corners to the highest bidder. And of course the would-be oligarchs were the ones with hard currency dollars that they could buy these things up as you pointed out earlier when we talked about them. So, they had credits from their friends in the West, the Riggs Valmet and so forth to buy up these vouchers and therefore they were able when the cost came up, were able to simply steal the property titles, the ownership titles of some of the most valuable investor assets and mineral assets in the world.

LS: And we can talk about this as a classical case of leveraged buyout – even though it was a covered leveraged buyout, if it was?

FEW: Well, you could call it a leveraged buyout. I know Anne Williamson has used that term, the earlier descriptions of it. I think it was simply legalised theft, leveraged buyout gives it too much dignity. That was a term that was quite popular in the financial world back in the '80s and the early '90s. But whatever name you want to give it, it was certainly not a conventional leveraged buyout, it was bizarre in every sense of the word.

LS: An influential figure in this was mentioned by you already, George Soros. And in 1994, as you point out in your book, he was described with the following words from The Guardian in London, "Soros extraordinary role not only as the world's most successful investor but now possibly fantastically as the senior most powerful foreign influence in the whole of the former Soviet Empire, it tricks more suspicion than curiosity." What was he doing back then in Russia?

FWE: Soros was very intermittently tied with Jeffrey Sachs and the whole Harvard to become a shock therapy group and working with Lawrence Summers team at the US Treasury under Clinton. And in 1993 already the opposition inside what was left of Russia when the old communist party was in the Duma and so forth and the population generally was such that the opposition threatened to get out of hand and Yeltsin was forced to agree to hold a national referendum on the entire privatisation. So, this was in April of '93 and the referendum that was given to the population had four questions, yes or no. Do you support Yeltsin? Yes or no? Do you support Yeltsin's economic policy? Yes or no? Do you want early election for president? Yes or no? And do you want early elections for parliament? Yes or no?

So, Chubais was as an adviser to Yeltsin at that time and the key person on the economy arranged the secret meeting with George Soros. And Soros agreed to finance of course on behalf of Yeltsin, the referendum campaign. So he funnelled money over a million dollars by some accounts to offshore accounts set up to be used by Chubais to buy media. And so the media campaign and by this time most of the national media had been bought up by the oligarchs around Yeltsin so they were able to exercise undue influence. So they barely squeak through and got a yes to the privatisation scheme that Harvard, Jeffrey Sachs and George Soros and others had going on. And then of course Soros' company himself benefitted enormously from this privatisation just a little bit later when the auctions took place.

LS: A figure that connects yesterday with today is Vladimir Putin who came to international attention first in 1998, the same year when the ruble crisis took place.

FWE: This was 1999 and in August '98 you had the collapse of the ruble. This was part of the Bush "Operation Hammer's" original design. You had a huge scam going on in the GKO Russian Bond market where the interest rates were just unbelievably high. So, you had all sorts of hot money coming in, making profits and pulling it up including Soros Fund, quantum fund and so forth.

And finally, Yeltsin was getting near the end of his ability to hold this thing together. And he appointed in August '99, he appointed a young former KGB officer who served during the Cold War in East Germany named Vladimir Putin. And briefly Putin had been a deputy mayor in St. Petersburg and briefly had been the head of the successor to the KGB called FSB and the oligarchs around Putin, I've heard various Russian accounts have had this happen but Berezovsky, Brzezinski and other, the Yeltsin oligarchs thought they could take this young guy Putin and do business with him and you know that he was young and had no political base.

So, at that point Putin gave the ultimatum to Yeltsin, resign or face serious consequences and it turned out that Putin which has later been confirmed was the spokesperson for a nationalist faction within the intelligence community, a patriotic faction, call it what you want but Russian nationalist. And so Yeltsin was told, "If you resign and just get out of politics, we'll leave you alone." So he took the offer and ran. And before he did that he named Vladimir Putin as acting president until elections in March the following year.

So, Putin then came into power and called a meeting as it were of the most powerful oligarchs who had made staggering fortunes at the expense of Russia and he called them creators of a corrupt state through insider dealings and began criminal prosecution against oligarchs like Vladimir Gusinsky and Media-Most, a financial group led by Vladimir Potanin who is in the newspaper today and soon left an oil company controlled by a Roman Abramovich and Boris Berezovsky. So, at that point Putin began the uphill battle of trying to stabilise Russia as a functioning economy. And the recent re-election of Putin indicates that the Russian people by and large support that effort of Putin's.

LS: Meanwhile he also had to react to something new that was taking place then and that was NATO was marching east.

FWE: The negotiations and this is, has been confirmed by former US Ambassador to Russia Jack Matlock and that was the negotiations between the Bush administration in 1991 Germany and Gorbachev included a solemn guarantee as Jack Matlock, Ambassador Matlock who was in Moscow in '87 until '91 in this period. He said that we gave a categorical assurance to Gorbachev when the Soviet Union still existed that if United Germany was able to stay in NATO, NATO would not move eastward. So, of course that pledge like so many pledges of Washington under Bush successor governance was honoured in the breach and the newly created National Endowment for Democracy that I write about quite a bit in the Manifest Destiny.

You had, Vin Weber was the chairman of the NED at that time and he took US taxpayer money through the NED to supposedly bring democracy into former communist states. Then Weber was also a member of the Project for the New American Century (PNAC), the neocon think tank which really shaped the personnel of George W. Bush in the year 2000 and 2001. And Vin Weber was also a lobbyist for the largest military industrial conglomerate of the US Lockheed Martin.

So, he was instrumental together with another military industrial Lockheed Martin, former Vice President for Strategy named Bruce Jackson, Bruce P. Jackson to promote back democracy in former communist countries including Russia. And they started the process of expanding NATO to the east in strict violation of the pledges that had been given back in the early '90s. So, by 2003, they had begun this whole expansion of NATO into Poland, into Hungary, all the former communist countries.

LS: And the countries at the Baltic Sea.

FWE: So, at the Baltic Sea right on the doorstep of the Russian Federation, and Poland, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary, Romania, Bulgaria and so forth. And you began to see a very definite NATO encirclement of Russia. And then in 2003-2004, the National Endowment for Democracy, George Soros' Foundation, the whole arm of the fake democracy NGOs of Washington, began to create the so called Orange Revolution in Ukraine, and also the Rose Revolution in Georgia next door. And if you look at a map, if you bring a pro NATO government into power in Ukraine, this they did under Viktor Gerashchenko in 2004, then you're presenting a pretty formidable military threat to the national security of Russia.

Now, at that time 2003, Russia was in no shape to do much more than feebly protest as loud as they could but of course they were ignored. Then you had something quite dramatic in 2006, the end of 2006. The George W. Bush administration Donald Rumsfeld was Secretary of Defence back then announced that they were installing ballistic missile defence now I'll get to that in a minute but it's anything but defensive. In Poland, in the Czech Republic and that those anti-missile defence installations which included missiles would be aimed at a rogue nuclear attack from Iran.

In early 2007, Vladimir Putin personally came as president of Russia Federation to the Munich Security Conference, the International Security Conference held here in Munich Germany and gave a speech which really defines the security position of Russia right up to the present date. He said of course this is not aimed at Iran or North Korea as Washington says. That's a lie. It's like taking your right arm to scratch your left ear we say in Russian. It's aimed at Russia. And we consider this intolerable as a threat to our national security and we will be forced to respond.

LS: And it is aimed at Russia as a first strike possibility.

FWE: Yeah. Well, the point about the missile defence is I – in connection with the book, I interviewed, in an earlier book I wrote, I interviewed Colonel Robert Bowman who had been briefly the head of Ronald Reagan's Star Wars or missile defence programme. And became a very, very severe critic of the Bush administration's reckless policies withdrawing from the antiballistic missile ABM Treaty and so forth, said that missile defence is the missing link to Nuclear Primacy. First strike capability.

And that's something that Pentagon planners had been opting for since the 1950s. And he said, "If you can block the counterattack from your opponent and you then have this possibility to make a first strike and wipe them out because they can't simultaneously fire an effective counterstrike." So, that in a nutshell destroys the whole cold war doctrine of mutual and sure destruction that kept nuclear options off the table up until that time. And the Russians understand military strategy rather well I would say. And said, "This is simply intolerable. We have to respond and we will respond but in our own way and you will see."

LS: And the Russians have reacted.

B: The Russians have reacted, and if we can go for a minute up until the present

LS: Please

FEW: On March 1st Putin gave an address to the Federal Assembly in Moscow televised to the nation. The beginning part of the speech, his annual speech there, was about the Russian economy and plans for the future. This was shortly before the Russian elections that overwhelmingly gave him a new term. But the crucial part of that speech to the Federal Assembly was Russia's military technologies and this is as he put it. He referred to that 2007 speech in Munich and he said, "We said at that time that Russia would have to reply and since the expansion of NATO to the east which really to be honest that's – see there is no reason after 1991 or certainly after 2000 for the existence of NATO other than the reason given when NATO was created by the first secretary general of NATO to keep the Russians out the Germans down and the Americans in."

But Putin's speech talked about nuclear primacy and the Russian response and he outlined the military are the developments that they had quietly brought online since Washington tore up, unilaterally tore up the ABM Treaty in 2002/2003. So he outlined an awesome array of missiles, hypersonic low flying stealth missiles carrying nuclear warheads, unpredictable trajectories, invisible against perspective missile defence and air defence systems, unmanned submersible vehicles to great depth that could go many times higher than the speed of submarines cutting edge torpedoes just and commentators in the West like CNN. They said, "Oh, this is just bluff and so forth."

People who know Russian military technology and the intensity of the kind of research and development that's focused on defending the nation confirm that this is no joke. Hypersonic aircraft five times the speed of sound, that's hypersonic and they have something called the [unclear] which goes 10 times mark 10 and as Putin described it, "This missile flying 10 times faster than sound can manoeuvre in all phases of the flight trajectory, overcome all prospective and aircraft county missile defences in a range of 2000 kilometres."

He outlined about six or seven of these I would call them not even cutting edge, bleeding edge military technology and as The Saker commented in his blogpost after the speech, it's indeed set marching game over for the empire. There's no more military option against Russia.

This all is to make a point that the entire history up until now, these fake accusations of Putin would have an interest or Russia would have an interest to meddle with the US elections when you have a choice between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump to accuse Putin and Russia of international violations of law by allowing a referendum to take place in Crimea after the CIA coup d'etat in Kiev and now it's come out from actual mercenary snipers that were brought in from Georgia under [#inaudible 00:55:08-0#] umbrella that they were paid by the CIA or promised to be paid by cut outs to the CIA to create the Maidan Square February 2014 chaos that led to the collapse of the government and the coup d'etat.

So, you know, this is not Russia is the arch Evel Knievel looking for a fight every corner of the world. It's not Russia doing bad things in Syria. It's Russia trying to stop a NATO and Saudi and other embedded destruction of the Middle East and create some kind of peace and stability. And anyone modest to take the slightest bit of care and follow this, they can read a running commentary on my website williamengdahl.com but not only there, it's all over the place. You realise that the fake media is the media that dominates and is guided by NATO public relations strategy in the West and it's not the so called critical media that's being sanctioned and censored right now.

LS: Let's talk further about the present, William, by closing one circle of our interview. As we've discussed the Russian gold vaults were empty since the early 1990s. This has changed since basically the financial crisis broke out in 2007, 2008, 2009. Since then the Russian Central Bank is buying gold like basically no other nation in a very rapid tempo.

FWE: Since the financial crisis and especially since the opposition of sanctions after the annexation of Crimea in 2014, it's been the policy of the Russian Central Bank and the Russian Federation to buy as much gold for reserves of the ruble as they can get their hands on. And they are now I think number five or number six in the world in terms of gold reserves and correct me if I'm wrong but just slightly behind the people's republic of China which has also been vigorously adding gold towards Central Bank reserves for the yuan.

So, what Russia is doing is creating a buffer gold, by the way in my view has never ceased being an object of value to stand behind currencies. If you have currencies like the dollar after all this 1971 when Nixon took the dollar off the bread and wood, gold exchange [unclear], then if you have a military you might or manipulate the oil price petrodollar and so forth, you can create money if you have the reserve currency you can create money without them. So what the Russia is doing is creating a security in terms of its currency and now that security is probably going to be tested by the economic warfare division of the US Treasury in these new sanctions.

But Russia is merging together with China. Interestingly enough after 2014 when the CIA coup d'etat Ukraine took place, Putin responded not by getting bogged down in the destructive war inside the Eastern Ukraine but he responded by turning east, strengthening his relationships with China, with the new president of China then Xi Jinping bringing the Asian economic Union which Russia is the leading economy in, together with Belarus and Kazakhstan, Armenia and others, bringing that in a coherence with Xi Jinping's Belt and Road Initiative One Belt, One Road to link the infrastructure, the energy pipelines, the high-speed rail networks, the deep water ports and so forth to create a Eurasian, some people call it the land bridge but it's an economic space in Eurasia that would have the majority of the world's population, would have every raw material resource that the world needs including rare earth metals that China is world's leading supplier of at the moment.

And Russia has vast oil and gas reserves and military technology, civilian technology, an educated labour force that is probably one of the finest in the world and scientific country and so forth. And independent of the bankrupt economies of Britain and the United States and very rapidly of the European Union where this banking crisis has, since the crisis of 2008 has just been swept under the rug but it's ready to explode on a moment's notice. So, you have a depth loaded western NATO world. Let's call it a NATO world, a world of the NATO member countries and you have Russia together, which by the way, Russia has unbelievably small

LS: Debt.

FWE: National debt.

LS: Yes.

FWE: Something like 13 to 17% of the gross domestic product.

LS: And now they have this huge stock of gold relative to very little sovereign debt. It's almost ideal.

FWE: Yes, and that's by design. That is by Putin's intention to create this independence. And one thing, I am very often in Russia, have a very, very dear special friends in Russia over the years, the first time I was there was 1994. That was a vastly different, that was in the middle of the Yeltsin and the insanity. The Russians are very not only proud people but they are very determined and they protect their existence and have done that I would say for well over 1000 years going back to the great schism between the Western church in Rome and the Eastern Church in 1054. I think that was a pivotal date in modern history, the division there.

But certainly the Russians have gone through two World Wars and the rape of Russia under Yeltsin, unbelievable trials and tribulations and they are not shying away from defending their existence. That's something I think the west or certainly Washington with these neocons really doesn't have a sense of.

LS: One thing that I would like to ask you about as my final question is the following. You are a renowned expert for the geopolitics and the history of oil. And since this month we have a future's contract in Shanghai, denominated in yuan for oil and we also hear that the Chinese are planning to price oil that they import in yuan which is safe for this buying of oil internationally via yuan, Russia would be the candidate number one as the exporter?

FWE: Definitely. Most definitely and Russia and China are connecting their financial markets ever closer. The Russian government is the in the process sometime this year of issuing Russian bonds denominated new Chinese yuan. The announcing of the petrol yuan, the oil futures contracts being sold in Shanghai, ultimately it won't happen overnight but it's certainly off to a positive start in the marketing acceptance. That has the basis for taking oil sales.

Let's step back a moment to the 1970s and I document this at length in two of my books, Myths, Lies and Oil Wars and A Century of War. In the early 1970s when Nixon took the dollar off of gold, the dollar relative to the German mark and the Japanese yen dropped like a stone, something like 40% over a period of five or six months. And in order to stop that because the New York Banks were hurting quite a bit from that, there was a oil price shock that was orchestrated. I won't go into the details it's documented quite extensively in those two books of mine.

LS: And Sheikh Yamani had said something about this, too.

FWE: Yes. He invited me after reading my book to his annual energy retreat in London in 2000, September 2000. And then called me to a private dinner discussion at his home outside of London to talk about what I wrote about in the book. And he later went on CNN on an interview and mentioned my book by name. In the written transcript it's in there and in the television version they spliced it out so that you couldn't realise that it'd been in there. But Sheikh Yamani told me you are the first journalist or the first person outside of myself that writes correctly what happened with that oil shock. And that was manipulated by among others Henry Kissinger, the Secretary of State and by a group in the Atlantic establishment called the Bilderberg meeting in Saltsjöbaden, Sweden back in May of that period before the Yom Kippur War.

In any case, the US circles around Rockefeller, who at that point was the chairman of the board of USA Incorporated, I would say. They had engineered a 400% price rise in oil and to make sure that Germany and Japan and other countries wouldn't make deals to buy oil in German mark but keep the dollar demand high and the dollar value high. They send a delegation from the US Treasury to sign an agreement with the Saudi Arabian monetary agency for a new relationship taking surplus Saudi petrodollars or OPEC petrodollars and buying US government debt.

LS: Yeah, and outside of the normal auction to privileged conditions.

FWE: Yes. In return, Washington agreed to give the Saudis tens and billions of dollars of defence equipment.

LS: Yeah, and Saudi Arabia would use its status as a swing producer in OPEC that it would only accept dollars as a pricing for oil.

FEW: And the quid pro quo was after 1975, this was formalised that Saudis would as swing producer in OPEC guarantee that OPEC sold its oil only in dollars and that held up until the time of Saddam Hussein during the sanctions shortly before the US invasion and Saddam Hussein began buying oil through a French bank denominated in Euros and not in dollars.

LS: And he made a plus, he made a net plus because he did sell his oil in Euro.

FWE: Yeah, yeah. And so this, what that has done up until the present is prop up the US dollars despite the fact that the internal industrial economy import activity of the United States went down the tubes over the past 40 years since the taking the dollar off of gold and the, putting of English dollars for the world economy. So, the idea than China and Russia would trade in energy and that other economies would begin to sell oil to China, Iran for example is a prime candidate in the petro yuan not in petrodollars, this began slowly like acid drops begins to erode the reserve currency status of the US dollar. And if that goes, it's end game for the US as a financial global power.

LS: We have to make clear to our audience. The fact that you have to buy oil in dollar makes sure that you need dollar, that you acquire dollar in order to buy oil.

FWE: Yeah.

LS: And so if this mechanism goes, well then the US has a problem because the dollars that are floating around internationally would find their way back into the homeland of the US.

FWE: Well, the other thing is that in order to sell now you have under this wonderful Trumponomics as I call it, you have projections that the US annual government deficit, shortage of tax income from tax outgo, spending outgo will by 2020 exceed one trillion dollars a year for every year as far as the eye can see. And by end of 2020, 2028 I think was figured by the congressional budget office, the US public debt is estimated to be well over $33 trillion, it's 20 now, 38 maybe, it's just out of control. So, if the ability of the US dollar to command use in the world economy is severely undermined, you're going to have to raise interest rates so high to sell this debt and it just becomes dysfunctional.

LS: Yes, but you have already in the last few years interest rates payments on this already existing that of per annum $400 billion.

FWE: Yeah.

LS: And if interest rates go up

FWE: Yeah and that was under zero interest rates, but now, you know, if they have to put up interest rates to five, six, seven, 8% like it was in the 1980s. the whole thing just blows up sky high.

LS: And so coming back to gold, gold has the advantage relative to bonds or shares or the US dollar or other Fiat currencies that there is no counterparty risk. If you have the gold in physical form, there is no counterparty risk.

FWE: Right.

LS: So would you say that gold will be one of the ultimate winners of the ongoing financial crisis when it goes into full gear?

FWE: Well, it's documented that J. P. Morgan, Chase and other select banks with this collusion of the Federal Reserve have been artificially depressing the price of gold for years. Every time there's a new financial crisis, they intervene and keep gold within a very tight range. At a certain point that's not going to work anymore and then some people estimate to follow the gold markets much more than I do but it could quickly go up to $10,000 an ounce or even beyond that.

Be that as it may, gold as you point out has no counterparty risk and it's a historic store of value. It's one of the beautiful commodities out there and it has a special – the other just being special significance economically and historically, the other thing is that China is the number one mining producer of gold in the world today, not South Africa. South Africa has fallen far behind

LS: Yeah, and Russia is number three.

FWE: Russia is number three.

LS: And a lot of member states of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation are producers or are buying gold.

FWE: At the rail connections of the circle of the China Belt Road Initiative in part are aiming to go in the areas where there are known gold reserves but no infrastructure during the Soviet era to bring that gold down to market. So, we have an extremely fascinating prospect, not just for China and Russia, for the world really to build up instead of tear down, destroy and burn and bankrupt which is the only policy that Washington seems able to follow these days.

LS: Yeah. To sum it up with a famous Chinese proverb. "May you live in interesting times" – you and all the others.

FWE: We certainly do.

LS: Okay. great. Thank you very much, William, for this interview.

FWE: Thank you, Lars.


Omega a day ago ,

Two things:

1. Operation Hammer:

In 1989 President George H. W. Bush began the multi-billion dollar Project Hammer program using an investment strategy to bring about the economic destruction of the Soviet Union including the theft of the Soviet treasury, the destabilization of the ruble, funding a KGB coup against Gorbachev in August 1991 and the seizure of major energy and munitions industries in the Soviet Union.

Those resources would subsequently be turned over to international bankers and corporations. On November 1, 2001, the second operative in the Bush regime, President George W. Bush, issued Executive Order 13233 on the basis of "national security" and concealed the records of past presidents, especially his father's spurious activities during 1990 and 1991.

http://www.conspiracyarchiv...

2. Why can't Putin touch Yeltsinist oligarchs:

Yeltsin's oligarchs remained as rich as they were; Yeltsin's family still possesses immense riches. And Putin does not dare to touch them. He goes hat in hand to open a Yeltsin's Memorial Centre; he is courteous with Yeltsin's widow and daughter. Putin's establishment cautiously avoided celebration, or even mention of the Revolution centenary, in keeping with Yeltsin's anticommunism. This is the Deal.

https://www.unz.com/ishamir...

Fraser a day ago ,

Given the depth of the fall, the rise (under Putin) has been remarkable.

Guy Fraser a day ago ,

The rise has been astounding and all because they have a leader that can't be bought , not corrupt and loves his country. That is why he literally was swept in in the last election. The Western leaders will not admit it but I am sure they are terribly envious .

Tommy Jensen a day ago ,

Very good article to bring to RI also.

It open eyes on how the West political elite are a criminal rotten cancer syndicate and Georg Bush Sr. shows up to be even worse than the disgusting profile he already has in media and Georg Soros bad reputation gets confirmed.

No police or court are available to take this out. We only have John Connor or The One to count on.
Choice is the problem now. We will have to make a choice.

Play Hide
Nicole Temple a day ago ,

The photo of Yeltsin and Clinton that accompanies this article should remind readers of this story:

https://viableopposition.bl...

There is something rotten in Washington and it has been in existence for decades.

Guy a day ago ,

Great interview .William Engdahl is a very knowledgeable person. I have read a few of his books. Superb in my view.

Jimi Thompson a day ago ,

Quite a few unknown tidbits for me in all of this... very eye-opening even for someone that is aware of the games being played at the higher levels.

To imagine all of what remains unknown, including many of the players, leaves much to the imagination.

[Apr 18, 2018] Macron Napoleonic complex

Apr 18, 2018 | russia-insider.com

In the space of a few days Macron has:

Inadequacy much? How needy for recognition is this guy?

CHUCKMAN 9 hours ago ,

France used to produce some pretty fine leaders, but lately, it's like a different place.

Hollande was the most ridiculous, gutless thing we ever saw. He was laughably pompous and ineffective and dishonest and even cowardly, vis a vis the US.

Macron probably ranks second worst. He's making a mess of France, he's blubbering all kinds of nonsense about the EU, he's busy putting troops in Syria against all international law, he is not liked by the people, and he is virtually a French doormat for America.

Sarkozy showed the odd bit of promise, but he was largely talk with no worthy efforts. And he was immensely corrupt. Imagine taking 20 million euros from Qaddafi and then participating in the scheme to kill him? Or the case of the senile woman who was France's wealthiest woman, from whom he took many millions for his campaigns, doing so in private without other members of the family or strict legal supervision.

Hard to see the same country we saw in de Gaulle's time and that of his immediate successors.

Muriel Kuri 8 hours ago ,

'I am an equal of Putin' - well, he's right in a way - they're both leaders of a country. Beyond that, there is NO comparison. Maybe he admires Putin - which is good, if he tries to emulate him, even better because Putin, after all, is one of the few great current leaders of the world. Macron has a very long way to go, but with many years experience, if he gets the chance, MAY become a better leader than some, but never will be the match of Putin.

[Apr 18, 2018] Obama vs Trump: That is how the political mechanism of faux populism works.

Apr 18, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

Jackrabbit | Apr 18, 2018 11:42:04 AM | 142

Don Bacon

Trump's actions have not matched his election rhetoric. Just like faux populist Obama. Obama also "caved" to pressure, and even set himself up for failure by emphasing "bipartisanship".

That is how the political mechanism of faux populism works.

Obama: Change you can believe in
Trump: Make America Great Again

Obama: Most transparent administration ever
Trump: Drain the Swamp

Obama: Deceiver: "Man of Peace" engaging in covert ops
Trump: Distractor: twitter, personal vendettas

Weakened by claims of unpatriotic inclinations:
Obama: Birthers (led by Trump who was close to Clinton's) - "Muslim socialist"!
Trump: Russia influence (pushed by 'NeverTrump' Clinton loyalists) - Putin's bitch!

There's more but I won't belabor the point.

[Apr 18, 2018] The disinformation is so deep, thick and pervasive that there is no way to discern fact from fiction. This is the fruit of Operation Mockingbird and its continuation and addendums

Notable quotes:
"... "Interesting that the PTB cannot keep and maintain a coherent storyline. There is no penalty for backtracking, lying, recanting, revisions." ..."
"... All that is required for the defeat of propaganda is historical memory. Hence, one purpose of the media--particularly the so-called news-cycle -- is to destroy historical memory. This is done in several ways. ..."
"... This destruction is then effected in the minds of the media audience as the inevitable cognitive result of their daily exposure to its "news." People who watch the news are people being daily reindoctrinated into a present that is cut off from and independent of anything that happened in the past--whether fifty years ago, ten years ago, or even yesterday. ..."
"... wonder why suicides and military suicides in particular are at unprecedented levels? ..."
Apr 18, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

fastfreddy | Apr 17, 2018 11:27:33 AM | 108

The disinformation is so deep, thick and pervasive that there is no way to discern fact from fiction. This is the fruit of Operation Mockingbird and its continuation and addendums.

Interesting that the PTB cannot keep and maintain a coherent storyline. There is no penalty for backtracking, lying, recanting, revisions...

Just move on to the next event.

Karl Rove was correct (was it 15 years ago?)

"We're an empire now, and when we act, we create our own reality. And while you're studying that reality -- judiciously, as you will -- we'll act again, creating other new realities, which you can study too, and that's how things will sort out. We're history's actors . . . and you, all of you, will be left to just study what we do."

WJ , Apr 17, 2018 12:24:48 PM | 115

@106,

"Interesting that the PTB cannot keep and maintain a coherent storyline. There is no penalty for backtracking, lying, recanting, revisions."

All that is required for the defeat of propaganda is historical memory. Hence, one purpose of the media--particularly the so-called news-cycle -- is to destroy historical memory. This is done in several ways.

1. The destruction of historical memory is "performed" by the media itself. This is what the Guardian does when it publishes six breathless Skripal stories on six successive days no one of which is consistent with the details of any other, but all of which tell us "Russia did it, Russia did it, Russia did it."

2. This destruction is then effected in the minds of the media audience as the inevitable cognitive result of their daily exposure to its "news." People who watch the news are people being daily reindoctrinated into a present that is cut off from and independent of anything that happened in the past--whether fifty years ago, ten years ago, or even yesterday.

3. This is why, for example, the media and its audience, while being able to acknowledge that the intelligence agencies lied in 2001-2003 for the sake of a predetermined war, are unable or unwilling to accede that this truth is relevant to our situation *today*. Because "today" is somehow always self-standing and unique. The truth of "today" is never related to the recent and more distant historical past as its complex analogue and consequence.

4. Because propaganda is not about truth but about current state-corporate interests it requires the destruction of any historical memory strong enough to test today's propaganda against the measure of the past so as to arrive at a true (or more nearly true) understanding of present politics.

john , Apr 17, 2018 1:08:09 PM | 122
fastfreddy says:

Interesting that the PTB cannot keep and maintain a coherent storyline

they don't have to. the psychosis of the state, its unwritten manifestos, its bent cultural inculcations, is running at full tide, unrestrained and seemingly immune to resistance, of which there is very little anyway. wonder why suicides and military suicides in particular are at unprecedented levels? ...

[Apr 17, 2018] the unbalanced evolution of homo sapiens Ed Schultz I was fired from MSNBC because I supported Bernie Sanders

Apr 17, 2018 | failedevolution.blogspot.gr

Ed Schultz: I was fired from MSNBC because I supported Bernie Sanders The former anchor claims the network was in the tank for Hillary Clinton

MSNBC anchor-turned-Russia Today host, Ed Schultz, told National Review Monday that he believes he was fired from the left-leaning cable news network because he openly supported Bernie Sanders in the Democratic presidential primary. The network, he claims, was in the tank for Hillary Clinton.

The interview itself is fascinating and a shocking look at the inner workings of MSNBC, even if Schultz isn't exactly a reliable narrator. Schultz claims that MSNBC took a heavy hand in dictating what went on air, and that he was often pushed in the direction of a story by higher-ups, even if he felt his audience wouldn't be interested.

Schultz says his trouble at MSNBC started when he informed his bosses that he planned to cover Bernie Sanders' campaign announcement live from Vermont, and that he would be airing the first, exclusive, cable network interview with the progressive presidential candidate. They objected, and even went so far as to tell Schultz to drop the story.

He refused. And was forced to cover a boring news story in Texas, he says.

Schultz is clear on whom he blames: Hillary Clinton.

" I think the Clintons were connected to [NBC's] Andy Lack, connected at the hip, " Schultz told NRO host Jamie Weinstein. " I think that they didn't want anybody in their primetime or anywhere in their lineup supporting Bernie Sanders. I think that they were in the tank for Hillary Clinton, and I think that it was managed, and 45 days later I was out at MSNBC. "

Schultz's stint at MSNBC came to a screeching halt in July 2015, just as the Democratic primaries were heating up. That same week, the network also axed other underperforming shows, but Schultz maintains that he was given the boot because they didn't want him speaking out against Clinton in the heat of the primaries.

Source: https://www.dailywire.com/news/29531/ed-schultz-i-was-fired-msnbc-because-i-supported-emily-zanotti

https://www.youtube.com/embed/9PIOD4YwOwA

system failure due to insufficient evolution? at

[Apr 11, 2018] It's surreal to watch such staggering levels of dishonest incompetence among our globalist "elites".

Apr 11, 2018 | www.unz.com

Anonymous [280] Disclaimer , April 10, 2018 at 5:33 am GMT

It's surreal to watch such staggering levels of dishonest incompetence among our globalist "elites".

This is worrying. Nobody is that stupid so it's more like they don't care about credibility going forward. Like it won't matter.

Kiza , April 10, 2018 at 5:40 am GMT
We have moved way beyond the Skripals case now. Simply put, if US shoots in Syria, Russia will shoot back this time, yes back at US. USS Donald Duck has been placed as a bait to be sent to the bottom of Mediterrenain sea by the Russians, similar to Arizona et al at Pearl Harbour.

Many dissenter websites are currently under attack by the cyber forces of the Western regimes and Israel, one of them being this one. Another site under attack is my favorite johnhelmer.com. In addition to saying that he is under attack, the current message from John is:
WHEN THE RULE OF LAW WAS DESTROYED IN SALISBURY, LONDON AND THE HAGUE, AND THE RULE OF FRAUD DECLARED IN WASHINGTON, THAT LEAVES ONLY THE RULE OF FORCE IN THE WORLD. THE STAVKA MET IN MOSCOW ON GOOD FRIDAY AND IS READY. THE FOREIGN MINISTRY ANNOUNCED ON SUNDAY "THE GRAVEST CONSEQUENCES". THIS MEANS ONE AMERICAN SHOT AT A RUSSIAN SOLDIER, THEN WE ARE AT WAR. NOT INFOWAR, NOT CYBERWAR, NOT ECONOMIC WAR, NOT PROXY WAR. WORLD WAR.

The West is utterly bankrupt, morally as well as financially and we are experiencing the Western remedial plan and actions – war!

annamaria , April 10, 2018 at 5:52 am GMT
"In 2016 an official British government inquiry determined that Bush and Blair had indeed together rushed to war. The Global Establishment has nevertheless rewarded Tony Blair for his loyalty with Clintonesque generosity. He has enjoyed a number of well-paid sinecures and is now worth in excess of $100 million."

– The character of Blair and the Establishment is well established: Blair is a major war criminal supported by the major war profiteers. His children and grandchildren are a progeny of a horrible criminal.

What is truly amazing is the complacency of the Roman Catholic Church that still has not excommunicated and anathematized the mass murderer. Blair should be haunted and hunted for his crimes against humanity.

With age, Blair's face has become expressively evil. His wife Theresa Cara "Cherie" Blair shows the same acute ugliness coming from her rotten soul of a war profiteer.

Blanco Watts , April 10, 2018 at 6:34 am GMT
The UK is governed by the same Neo-liberal psychotic cabal that runs the US, Israel and France.
JR , April 10, 2018 at 7:06 am GMT
Keep in mind how long ago all this is:
Skripal was recruited around 1990 and arrested in 2004. Guess that the Russian attitude towards Skripal took the chaos of the 90′s as mitigating circumstances into account.
Skripal served his sentence of only 13 years till 2010 when he was pardoned and given the option to leave. Russia did not revoke Skripal's citizenship. The UK issued Skripal a passport too. On arrival in the UK Skripak was extensively debriefed by UK intelligence services. Skripal has lived for 8 years in the UK now.

And now out of the blue this incident nicely dovetailing with May ratcheted up anti Russia language only a few months before this false flag incident and the rapidly failing traction of the Steele/Orbis/MI6 instigated Russia collusion story on the basis of that fake Trump Dossier. By the way Orbis affiliated Steele and Miller have been among Skripal's handlers.

Ronald Thomas West , Website April 10, 2018 at 8:43 am GMT
From the Steele dossier lies falling apart to the Skripal lies falling apart to the 'Assad did it' lies falling apart:

https://ronaldthomaswest.com/2018/04/08/open-letter-to-die-linke/

^

Paul Craig Roberts is correct when quoting The Saker:

"The Russian view is simple: the West is ruled by a gang of thugs supported by an infinitely lying and hypocritical media while the general public in the West has been hopelessly zombified." -- The Saker

I expect that makes the Russians right

[Apr 11, 2018] Unfortuntely, even among friends and aquaintances, the story about evil Assad killing Children is often readily believed

White Helmets was the greatest war propaganda invention since Goebbels "big lie"
The sheeple might realize that they were duped only when it's too late... It's all very darwinian: Elite is too nasty and common people are too stupid and too busy with surviving in economic uncertanty to decipher lies
Notable quotes:
"... "the West is ruled by a gang of thugs" ..."
"... It is depressing to see that there are very few people in the MSM speaking out for reason. One of the few ones is Tucker Carlson. ..."
"... The US, British etc. taxpayer funded propaganda arm of Islamists, the media trained "white helmets" are delivering videos that look almost as real as Hollywood products and most of the sheeple in the western world don't question their propaganda narrative. ..."
"... Well here you go Dutti. Both Glen Greenwald and Amy Goodman are out there in media land championing the 'truth' for good old Isramerika. ..."
Apr 11, 2018 | www.zerohedge.com

Stuck on Zero -> IridiumRebel Tue, 04/10/2018 - 23:16 Permalink

No other nation will go to war with the U.S. They are too smart. All they have to do is wait till we burn ourselves out and fight amongst ourselves.

IridiumRebel -> Stuck on Zero Tue, 04/10/2018 - 23:18 Permalink

This is my hope.....

beepbop -> IridiumRebel Tue, 04/10/2018 - 23:23 Permalink

"the West is ruled by a gang of thugs"

Those THUGS are Jewish Neocons/Zionists/Bolsheviks. They've got the USG in their pockets. They're the HIDDEN HAND .

Let's tell it like it is.

Dutti -> DownWithYogaPants Tue, 04/10/2018 - 23:38 Permalink

It is depressing to see that there are very few people in the MSM speaking out for reason. One of the few ones is Tucker Carlson.

Unfortunately, even among friends and acquaintances, the story about "evil Assad killing Children" is often readily believed.

The US, British etc. taxpayer funded propaganda arm of Islamists, the media trained "white helmets" are delivering videos that look almost as real as Hollywood products and most of the sheeple in the western world don't question their propaganda narrative.

Very sad and disheartening.

FBaggins -> Dutti Tue, 04/10/2018 - 23:45 Permalink

Well here you go Dutti. Both Glen Greenwald and Amy Goodman are out there in media land championing the 'truth' for good old Isramerika.

http://www.thetruthseeker.co.uk/?p=168513

[Apr 09, 2018] In my opinion, the forces that push for war know they are lying and don't care if a small percentage are on to them. They have the microphone and we do not.

Notable quotes:
"... Without sufficient domain knowledge, you have no immunity from MSM narratives. And, to acquire that knowledge you need to read non-MSM sources (or know people with first-hand experience). ..."
Apr 09, 2018 | turcopolier.typepad.com

Babak Makkinejad -> Prince Monolulu , 4 hours ago

Reasonably intelligent people? Like this Iranian woman (in US) whose postings during the war for Aleppo was full of righteous indignation for the rebels. when I told her that the people whose fate she was bemoaning would do many evil things to her as a Shia Iranian woman; she would not hear of it.
ceasley7 -> Babak Makkinejad , 2 hours ago
Couldn't agree with you more Babak. My dad is a 78 year old Orthopedic physician here in the US. He would be considered intelligent by most people. And he is. Except when it comes to Geopolitics. He believes everything the MSM parrots and I gave up long ago in voicing my opinion to him. It's hopeless. And consider the vast majority of the citizens of my country are far less intelligent than him. In my opinion, the forces that push for war know they are lying and don't care if a small percentage are on to them. They have the microphone and we do not.
Prince Monolulu -> Babak Makkinejad , 4 hours ago
Yes, people like that. Without sufficient domain knowledge, you have no immunity from MSM narratives. And, to acquire that knowledge you need to read non-MSM sources (or know people with first-hand experience).

[Apr 09, 2018] Hi, I am from the government. I am here to lie to you

The Brits blinked and did not punish the criminal liar Blair. Since then, the war profiteering based on false flag operations has become a national British pastime.
Notable quotes:
"... The problem for governments using false flag operations like this is many more people are no longer trusting their own governments and quite rightly so. ..."
Apr 09, 2018 | www.zerohedge.com

are we there yet -> DuneCreature Sun, 04/08/2018 - 17:56 Permalink

Hi, I am from the government. I am here to lie to you. I have so many lies on top of other lies that sometimes they are true. Even the government has lost track. I am not sure if even MIC or Israel knows anymore.

GreatUncle Sun, 04/08/2018 - 10:51 Permalink

The problem for governments using false flag operations like this is many more people are no longer trusting their own governments and quite rightly so. Human minds are reinforcing the concept of untrustworthy governments that actually lasts far longer than the elected period of time of those who purport to represent the population we now know to be a deceit.

As example, take Blair ex-UK prime minister who concocted the whole Iraq dodgy dossier in the UK who most people I know now call him a war criminal but nobody will put on trial in the Hague. He has not been PM since 2007 but nobody forgets the criminal acts he instigated and supported and will be remembered for a long time for this. So how do you make Blair appear human again to the population?

You can apply this concept to so many elected criminals in the west ... join it up those that rule us are in fact criminals not ordinary people. The psychos rule over us and to them we are no more than dead meat.

[Apr 08, 2018] Do brighter minds incline to honesty by James Thompson

Apr 08, 2018 | www.unz.com

Simon Gächter & Jonathan F. Schulz. Intrinsic honesty and the prevalence of rule violations across societies. Nature, Letter doi:10.1038/nature17160

https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B3c4TxciNeJZS0JfOGZQNnBhVkE/view?usp=sharing

The authors argued thus:

Good institutions that limit cheating and rule violations, such as corruption, tax evasion and political fraud are crucial for prosperity and development. Yet, even very strong institutions cannot control all situations that may allow for cheating. Well-functioning societies also require the intrinsic honesty of citizens. Cultural characteristics, such as whether people see themselves as independent or part of a larger collective, that is, how individualist or collectivist a society is, might also influence the prevalence of rule violations due to differences in the perceived scope of moral responsibilities, which is larger in more individualist cultures.

If cheating is pervasive in society and goes often unpunished, then people might view dishonesty in certain everyday affairs as justifiable without jeopardising their self-concept of being honest. Experiencing frequent unfairness, an inevitable by-product of cheating, can also increase dishonesty. Economic systems, institutions and business cultures shape people's ethical values, and can likewise impact individual honesty.

I described Gachter and Schultz's work in April 2016, and thought I could immediately see a problem with the interpretation that the authors placed on the results. Putting forward a different perspective took a few days. Getting that new approach published has taken 2 years. For how long will researchers put up with these absurd delays which impede the prompt assessment of arguments?

http://www.unz.com/jthompson/honestly

The authors of this very interesting study, having revealed the cheats, interpreted the national differences as being due to cultural factors, particularly whether there were institutions in each society which encouraged honesty. Of course, this leaves open why one society would have such institutions and another would not. Culture must come from somewhere. A reasonable hypothesis is that the institutions of a county are built by the people who live there. Here is our reply:

Honesty, rule violation and cognitive ability: A reply to Gächter and Schulz
Heiner Rindermann, David Becker, James Thompson.
Intelligence, Volume 68, May–June 2018, Pages 66–69.

https://authors.elsevier.com/c/1Wl5h_3fG8aUwo

Our argument is that both institutions and honesty are determined by the intelligence of people, and that bright people can see the long-term benefits of honesty and of institutions that support honest behaviour. Any institution with a code of conduct leads its members toward probity, and shows prospective applicants what standards are expected of them. However, those institution do not arise randomnly.

Gächter & Schulz assumed that institutional rules affect individual honesty.
We added cognitive ability as further factor explaining national differences.
Stronger effect of IQ (total 0.55) than of rule violation (total −0.34) on honesty.
Stronger effect of IQ (total −0.68) than of honesty (total −0.26) on rule violation.
________________________________________
Abstract
Gächter and Schulz (2016) assumed an effect of institutional rule violation on individual honesty within societies. In this reply we challenge this approach by including a nation's cognitive ability as a further factor for cross-national variations in the prevalence of rule violations and intrinsic honesty. Theoretical considerations, correlational and path analyses show that a nation's cognitive ability level (on average β = |.62|) better explains and predicts honesty and rule violation. While institutional and cultural factors are not unimportant, cognitive factors are more relevant.

The paper argues that there is a causal link between intellectual development and moral awareness: the individual process of development represents an advance from cognitive egocentrism to de-centered thinking, from ethical egocentrism to the consideration of the interests and rights of others.

Cognitive ability seems to have the strongest causal effect on the honesty of a society:

The same pattern holds true if you assume that social levels of honesty intermediate individual levels of honesty as shown by rule violation.

Either way, it seems that intelligence explains whether some societies cheat at games and cheat in real life.


KA , March 23, 2018 at 2:15 pm GMT

Society rots from top and doesn't matter who is at the top. It still remains valid even when the so called least intellectually developed honest poor people get shafted for hundred of years by so called high IQ nations who bring cheating,dishonesty,and violations of existing laws and destruction of existing institutions without replacing them nationwide. Often these newly created institutions are nothing but vehicle to whitewash the corrupting and corrupted new system.

Public moral status has a lot to do with corruption at the top -both local and international in these days of neoliberalism and post -colonization. It sounds painful and hurtful though.

res , March 23, 2018 at 3:18 pm GMT
Interesting work! I am amazed academics have the patience to deal with such a long lag time for letting arguments play out.

Is there any chance of you publishing a scatter plot matrix of the variables you used and/or the data itself?

Do you have the correlation matrix for your variables? By any chance did you try single and multiple variable models to try to predict rule violation from the other variables? It would be interesting to see how much variance an assortment of those models explained.

Has anyone explored the idea of "cheater fraction" (analogous to smart fraction) to explain dishonesty in societies?

James Thompson , Website March 23, 2018 at 5:28 pm GMT
@res

Cheater fraction sounds interesting. I assume that if it is higher than 16% then the society in question is worth avoiding, if at all possible.

Santoculto , March 23, 2018 at 8:17 pm GMT
Honesty can be anything, it's look like obedience to authority instead true or pure honesty
Santoculto , March 23, 2018 at 8:34 pm GMT
@Santoculto

I mean, based on proto-concept used.

Santoculto , March 23, 2018 at 8:37 pm GMT
So ashekl jews [on very avg or not] are the exception in collective terms **
Miro23 , March 23, 2018 at 11:59 pm GMT
It's an interesting question. Some years ago The Economist did a "European Honest Test " leaving a wallet with a fair amount of cash in it (but also including clear contact details of the owner), in capital cities around Europe.

The test was to see how many wallets were returned – and they found that the Scandinavians returned almost all of them, and the Italians returned almost none – with a clear North/South gradient in the results.

By coincidence, at about the same time, I found a wallet beside some rubbish bins with € 400 in it and some credit cards (one from my own bank). So on my next visit, I told them about it and soon got a call from the owner ( a Spanish carpenter working in Germany). His reaction was 1) to check that the money was still in the wallet 2) say that not many people would return a wallet with € 400 in it 3) leave 2 bottles of wine at my front gate.

I checked this reaction with my secretary at the time, and asked her what she would have done, with the answer that it would be a "Regalo de Dios" (Gift of God), i.e. it was not going to be returned to the owner, so there seems to be some anecdotal evidence for the result.

Godfree Roberts , Website March 24, 2018 at 12:31 am GMT
China's position on the Intrinsic Honesty chart is puzzling both at the macro level (remarkably honest, competent policy-makers) and at the individual level (above average IQ).

The Edelman Corporation, which has a lock on international surveys of personal and institutional honesty has consistently found the Chinese to be among the most trusting people on earth, as have World Values Surveys in their own, independent polls of the Chinese.

The source of the discrepancy appears to be the source of the data: "a n indicator of political rights by Freedom House that measures the democratic quality of a country's political practices; the size of a country's shadow economy as a proxy for tax evasion; and corruption as measured by the World Bank's Control of Corruption Index (Supplementary Methods)".

Relying on George Soros' Freedom House for information about China is akin to relying on the neighborhood fox to keep an eye on your chickens while you go on vacation. Garbage in, garbage out

https://docs.google.com/document/d/e/2PACX-1vSwBCAPkkvGYMGa-7qn79nTF-eX-EnPauQYK8a_NqIAxY7nO7gwjp-m4u9BpRpcOOGZXnkrfe65MOaz/pub .

James Thompson , Website March 24, 2018 at 8:19 am GMT
@Miro23

Regalado.

Anonymous [388] Disclaimer , March 24, 2018 at 10:30 am GMT
I would rate Japan pretty high for getting things returned, but this ethic has eroded over the past three or four decades.

Also, in the past you'd see adult males scolding unrelated misbehaving teens in public, who'd slink away with their tails between their legs. This you do not currently see: men are less masculine and assertive and some teens at least are more beligerant.

Dieter Kief , March 24, 2018 at 11:38 am GMT
I think, David Perkins' findings about high IQ-people being also very tribal would make for a nice addendum here, to better understand how IQ and honesty are related.

I refer to Jonathan Haidt's argument, that he bases explicitly on Perkins' findings, that because of the tendency of high IQ-people to be even more tribal than the lower IQ ranks, ist is so crucial, to understand with J. S. Mill's On Liberty (and I add: with Kant and – – the Kantian Habermas' "Theory of Communicative Action"), that the core achievement of modernity is the institutionalization of disconformation in the democratic/liberal rational discourse and liberal public sphere (universities, the media, etc.).

Here's Jonathan Haidt, referring to Perkins and Mill to make clear, how important the institutionalization of disconformation actually is:

Ilya G Poimandres , March 24, 2018 at 12:12 pm GMT
Correlation≠causation. Maybe honesty leads to brighter minds. Is it your knowing the right answer that makes you follow it, or is it you looking at the situation, as it is, considering evidence and proof, and getting the right answer through correct deductive reasoning, which is then to be followed? You can't be honest and act ideologically, because by definition you follow your observations of the world, not your ideas of the world. An honest person is bound to direct observation, an intelligent person is not. Honesty is probably primary to an accurate understanding of the world.
Wizard of Oz , March 24, 2018 at 1:57 pm GMT
@James Thompson

I think that 16 per cent is a bit arbitrary. In a class or caste dominated society you might, if of a class which can choose to avoid countries, decide that it really doesn't matter if your butler and housekeeper have to terrify the lower orders to stop them ripping you off (and the butler and housekeeper have enough relations they want to place in employment to keep them to the rules as to how much they cheat you).

Wizard of Oz , March 24, 2018 at 2:12 pm GMT
@Miro23

I recently lost my wallet for a short time in a supermarket-plus-other-shops complex as I wheeled my trolley to the car park. I thought my pocket had been picked so went to a nearby poluce station to see if they could accelerate access to CCTV. Mr Plod was useless and unhelpful. (Fortunately I didn't start cancelling credit cards immediately as he pretty well demanded). Back in the shopping centre I was directed to a caretaker's office where a 30 ish man of Pakistani origin had my wallet that had fallen out of my pocket as I went up a ramp. He had taken the trouble to count the cash and wrap it separately with a note on it that the amount was $915 or whatever. I never bothered to count it myself or even unwrap it for several days. What does that say about the standard of civilisation in one of Australia's biggest cities?

Wizard of Oz , March 24, 2018 at 2:41 pm GMT
As anyone who has seen how inadequate religion is today to form moral young people may have thought, the obvious starting point is to ask oneself how I bring up my children and what moral rules I rub in (preferably by example as well as preaching). One knows children are not going to be cunning ruthless sophisticates by nature – unless psychopaths – and will not benefit from being taught to think immediately how they can get away with some theft or lie. So you bring them up with rules which will help to make sure they are both trusted and trustworthy – seeing you return the small amount of change over paid for exsmple to rub in the message about rules they should still be obeying without thought when they have children. Morality is about the customs of the tribe, its mores, and children are rarely done any sort of favour by not being trained to be strictly moral (even if taught Christian forgiveness, especially for the "poor in spirit"). However ..

It occurs to me that the place of intelligence in this may extend to what hss been called Divergent Thinking (does this overlap with Lateral Thinking? Or imagination?)
A quick imaginative laterally thinking brain may think of several ways some dishonest subterfuge may go wrong almost st the moment temptation arises. So honesty for him he quickly concludes is the best policy. And so down the speculative path on which little evidence is to be found. After all what is one to make of the arrogant lawyer that one reads about in the big tax case who thought arrogantly he could get away with something and the Mr Plods of the tax office would never sus him out and prove his wrongdoing to a court?

James Thompson , Website March 24, 2018 at 4:19 pm GMT
@Wizard of Oz

I was guided by my recollection of the modelling of neighbourhood crime risk, but it is a sliding scale, I agree. I assumed, years ago, that at the 16-20% level one would begin to notice a difference from base rate. See, in this particular example, Fig 2 and Fig 3

http://www.lagriffedulion.f2s.com/hood.htm

Miro23 , March 24, 2018 at 8:06 pm GMT
@Wizard of Oz

What does that say about the standard of civilization in one of Australia's biggest cities?

It doesn't really say anything. You need some standardized parameters and a reasonable sample size. Then you can draw some conclusions and assess the level of accuracy – like The Economist did with their wallet test – quite a good experiment.

However , at the individual level, a continuing positive outcome would be the wallet owner saying thank you, and being more inclined to return the favor one day.

Wizard of Oz , March 25, 2018 at 1:52 am GMT
Yep. Fair enough. (All of it).
Wizard of Oz , March 25, 2018 at 2:08 am GMT
@James Thompson

It occurs to me that 5 per cent might be a horrible worrying prospect if you, as a lawyer or doctor, thought it applied to the five or ten thousand you might come across as fellow professionals in your city or state. But then it could be that you rarely gossip about others and only regard as liars and cheats those who have done it to you (apart from the few who have been busted for insurance fraud). Maybe 16 per cent sometimes fudge or fiddle something but you don't know so you remain happily (and honestly) complacent, and proud of your profession.

Jonathan Mason , March 25, 2018 at 3:24 am GMT
More intelligent people may be more adept at calculating the possible negative consequences of personal dishonesty and they are likely to have more to lose. However, put them in a corporate situation and no doubt they will be as gung-ho as anyone to figure out ways to rip off customers.
Drapetomaniac , March 25, 2018 at 4:13 am GMT
@Miro23

I only look at the lost wallet in one light: it's not my property.

One of the factors I consider when looking at whether a person is a member of mankind or humankind – property.

szopen , March 25, 2018 at 8:57 am GMT
@Miro23

I've lost a wallet once and then I was visited home by shop owner, who carefuly tracked where I could live by using data from the wallet. She wanted nothing in exchange.

On university, I also was also given back a wallet once; I got back also a cellphone (which was quite expansive at the time) I left somewhere few years ago.

OTOH once I left a wallet with cash at university and it was not returned.

So, here you are my anecdotal evidence from Poland: three wallets and one cellphone, one time not returned, two plus one times returned.

szopen , March 25, 2018 at 9:07 am GMT
@James Thompson

"my recollection", " _I_ assumed, years ago" ??? Does that mean La Griffe du Lion is you?!?

Svigor , March 25, 2018 at 9:28 am GMT

More intelligent people may be more adept at calculating the possible negative consequences of personal dishonesty and they are likely to have more to lose. However, put them in a corporate situation and no doubt they will be as gung-ho as anyone to figure out ways to rip off customers.

The purpose of the institution in question is to "figure out ways to rip off customers." It's neither dishonesty nor cheating. The trick is not to have a culture that puts corporate/employer concerns first.

Obviously smarter people are going to tend to be more moral; you need to know what the fuck morality and ethics even are, and assess the circumstances, before you can make your decisions. Retards can't even get to the point of making a decision. Stupid people are great at missing the moral implications of their behavior. Smart people are the ones who need to come up with rationalizations.

animalogic , March 25, 2018 at 9:54 am GMT
All "honesty" begins with the self. Lying to your self, about your self is the basis of delusion and
in-authenticity. How can you know reality when reality is constantly reinterpreted to fit the needs of a run-away ego ?
The general point, that intelligence is linked to long term thinking seems sound to me. Dishonestly is often about immediate gratification: a question of gaining or avoiding immediate pleasure/displeasure. Honesty is a strategy that "pays off" over the long term.
Honesty, or truth telling (in so far as one can) is also a factor in an Honour culture. The liar is a "base" person, a person who has no sense (or no care about) their own social (self conscious) standing. Honesty also has a close correlation with such things as "loyalty", "promising" etc.
animalogic , March 25, 2018 at 10:02 am GMT
@Jonathan Mason

Oh yes !
That's the joy of the corporate structure: no one is responsible. EVERYONE acts because they "owe" obligations to another. (Executives to higher executives; Higher executives to the Board; the Board to Shareholders) Personal, moral responsibility becomes entirely lost in this deliberately confected ethical melange. The Large organisation is the perfect environment for crafting crimes safe from individual consequence.

animalogic , March 25, 2018 at 10:06 am GMT
@Wizard of Oz

It says you are damn lucky. If I had $ 915 in my wallet I'd super-glue the damn thing to my chest. Rather lose a couple layers of skin than that kind of dosh.

animalogic , March 25, 2018 at 10:25 am GMT
@Ilya G Poimandres

Self honesty is a long tortuous process.
Ideology is a relief: it removes the constant anxiety of needing to "question".
Science is -- should be -- the strictest form of public honesty.
Its frightening how many reports we so often get now about the systemic "dishonesty" in the scientific realm. (Dishonesty driven usually (not exclusively) by the demands of corporate profits)

m___ , March 25, 2018 at 10:46 am GMT
Sublime opportunism, entwined inside collective incentives, converges into supreme ethics, moral behaviour.
Sadly, the convergence is beyond the gradients of our elites.
The why of hard-wired human elites as are, cannot transcend to long term survival strategies, and society resembles a chicken coop.

To add another factor randomly, embedded into the above, it does not matter, how intelligence plays out between individuals, because individual opportunity feeds back into a pool of extended family, group, tribe, waves of culture and ad-hocs, lastingly and durably not encased in cognitive ambition, itself a consequence of cognitive genetic effort. Colleges and universities worldwide are a better example of petty games.

The "truth" and other concepts of "honesty" are a psychological, relative variant, depending on context. The agnostic concept of real and it's pursuit is unknown to our archaic, analogue brain without the preposition of a limited context, opportune in the now.

EliteCommInc. , March 25, 2018 at 1:35 pm GMT
I would be interested in how honesty was explicated. And the valuation of cross cultural rules that note the value of said rule equally across cultures. Now perhaps, these are fully layed out in the study, but I was unable to access the sight provided.

I would also be interested how the study rated honesty as a national value. Thus far the model looks to be applied by survey data. As I was reading I kept thinking of the multiple national scandals in which dishonesty played a central role. Once one figures out the definition and meaning of what constitutes honesty among individuals and or societal groups as agreed upon by those groups, then a model of measuring said honesty is built. This is essential because the article indicates that the difference in variable is largely cultural. So I have to conclude that a standard was established that recognizes what honesty is across cultures.

Because even withing culture, honesty varies. If intelligence is the key demarcation than one would expect those groupings with supposedly higher intelligence to have a higher degree of honesty. But again, even withing culture an agreed upon understanding of honesty is required.
Assuming intelligence matters to some set post of morality, in this case honesty -- could the model replicate supposed intelligence to honesty withing a given system in which the rules are more readily identifiable and agreed upon. Assuming that the students at the US military academies rank higher in intelligence than say the students at any comparable sized university would the students among the military academies rank higher or lower as to the being or practicing honesty. Considering the value placed on meritocratic institutions such as Harvard when measuring that intelligence grouping demonstrate a higher degree of honesty than a comparable public university.

Assuming we agree what the rules are,

"The paper argues that there is a causal link between intellectual development and moral awareness: the individual process of development represents an advance from cognitive egocentrism to de-centered thinking, from ethical egocentrism to the consideration of the interests and rights of others"

it could be interesting whether said tested data is measuring awareness verses adherence.

Here are a bare list of some developed nation's honesty issues regarding rule adherence.

http://www.statemaster.com/encyclopedia/Scientific-misconduct

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cheating (rare use of Wikipedia)

https://phys.org/news/2014-11-business-culture-banking-industry-favors.html

Again assuming that the players agree on what the rules are across countries or cultures a comparison of honesty across varying fields as to scandals and or practices might tell us something regarding the impact of intelligence to honesty across said cultures.

Found the article interesting and just expressed to thoughts on the read.

James Thompson , Website March 25, 2018 at 1:57 pm GMT
@szopen

No, someone else.

ThreeCranes , March 26, 2018 at 1:25 am GMT
Well, I'll speak (honestly) from the other perspective.

I used to ride my bike of a Sunday morning on a scenic route that boasted a few first class restaurants. Twice I found wallets lying on the pavement just downstream from these establishments. Apparently, the owners, a little tipsy, had set their wallets on top of their cars while they fumbled for their keys and then drove off.

The first I took to the local police station. The second I took home and called the owner (who lived in Canada) using their credit card number to pay for the call and left a message reassuring her that her wallet (and money) was safe and sound, not to worry (because I knew she would, having lost it outside her home country). I didn't want to take it to the police because I figured they'd begin to suspect me of stealing the wallets if I kept showing up with them.

She and her husband drove down to a prearranged place to meet me for the return. She was very grateful.

The owner of the first lost wallet called me and asked if they could donate $100 in my name to my favorite charity.

Another time I found a perfectly nice fleece-lined, leather aviation jacket lying in the road just outside a golf course. Luckily there was a receipt from his fee for 18 holes in the pocket. I called him and arranged to return the coat. We met. He treated me as though I had stolen the jacket from his car. Not so much as a thank you.

I don't know if I'm inclined to honesty because I'm bright, it's just that I've lost my wallet in the past and it's such a pain in the butt that I feel sorry for anyone who shares that fate. Credit cards, ID etc. the money is the least of it.

Mishra , March 26, 2018 at 7:14 am GMT
Honesty and trust are just two more archaic notions to be discarded along the way toward our new third-world future.
The Alarmist , March 26, 2018 at 11:08 am GMT

"Good institutions that limit cheating and rule violations, such as corruption, tax evasion and political fraud are crucial for prosperity and development."

I'd argue that these institutions derive from a well-functioning, high-trust society and are rarely a catalyst for more honesty in other societies.

As for the connection to intelligence, look at India and China to test your hypothesis.

JackOH , March 26, 2018 at 12:20 pm GMT
@ThreeCranes

"Another time I found a perfectly nice fleece-lined, leather aviation jacket lying in the road just outside a golf course. Luckily there was a receipt from his fee for 18 holes in the pocket. I called him and arranged to return the coat. We met. He treated me as though I had stolen the jacket from his car. Not so much as a thank you."

TC, yep. I found a wallet stuffed with cash and credit cards on the campus of our local state university. A campus policeman was nearby so I turned the wallet over to him. He cautioned me that people who recover lost or abandoned property are sometimes blamed by the owners of that property for any real or imagined loss, damage, or inconvenience to the owners.

My rough rule of thumb is that if the property can be readily linked to an owner, I return it. If not, and the property has trivial value, say under USD $100, it's a judgment call. Found a few bottles of liquor, seals unbroken, in a trash can. Kept them. Found an untagged but well-kept dog once, which I judged to have strong sentimental value to its owner, so I placed an ad in a local newspaper, got a response, and returned the dog. His children were very grateful.

Santoculto , March 26, 2018 at 10:53 pm GMT
@Mishra

Most of corruption in third world countries came back from the top of social hierarchy, i mean, higher IQ.

dux.ie , March 27, 2018 at 7:38 am GMT
The Gachter experiment on rule violation is based on die throwing in sterile experimental conditions where the financial incentives are trivial and more seriously there are no competition between the participants and there are no mechanism to identify specific individual cheating and no resulting blemish to ones' reputation. So how much of that are relevant to real life situations?

Real life cheating data where there are great advantage to be gained and also with consequences that might affect ones future are more appropriate to be studied. One aspect of the OECD TALIS project dealt with real life cheating in 8645 schools and over 100K? teachers globally,

"TALIS 2013 Results: An International Perspective on Teaching and Learning – © OECD 2014″

http://www.oecd.org/education/talis/

Table 2.20.Web. School climate – Frequency of student-related factors (cheating)
Percentage of lower secondary education teachers whose school principal reports that the following student behaviours occurred 1 Never, 2 Rarely, 3 Monthly, 4 Weekly, 5 Daily in their schools.

Answers 3, 4 and 5 are considered to be serious indicator of cheating in schools. With the intention to mash the TALIS data with the PISA 2012 data, the primary school data were excluded.

Many popular pre-conceived ideas about cheating in schools were not proven by the data. In fact considerable efforts were needed to find any significant statistical trend. For example at the national levels cheating were not correlated to the average PISA scores, fraction of top or bottom PISA scores, teachers' practice of spliting the class to teach and to test part of the class differently, etc.

The factor that show statistical significance is the proxy factor for competition or meritocracy. Countries have adopted various shades of "no child left behind" policy and that is reflected in the age profile of the class. In country that practice strict "no child left behind", the students are automatically promoted to the next grade in the next academic year regardless of the ability of the students with the results that the student will be exclusive of the same 'academic age'. When meritocracy is practiced, poorly performing students might have to repeat the same grade one or more times resulting in 'academic age' distribution in class. Since the PISA project has data of percentage of 15 yo for that grade, the idea can be tested. To be polite, the marked datapoints are not labelled. Two countries separated by a narrow channel can have drastically different cheating levels.

Q32CheatRpt = -0.404*PctGrade +56.76; #n=32; Rsq=0.1891; p=0.01287 *

http://tinypic.com/view.php?pic=axb52h&s=9

The school cheating levels is statistically significant to be linearly dependent on the percent of the 15 yo in class. The levels of cheating is dependent on the level of meritocracy practiced. With automatic promotion to the next academic grade there is little need for the students to cheat. The governments are doing the cheating instead. The out-criers of cheating in other countries do not realized that they are in countries with lesser meritocracy.

Peter Frost , Website March 27, 2018 at 1:37 pm GMT
The paper argues that there is a causal link between intellectual development and moral awareness: the individual process of development represents an advance from cognitive egocentrism to de-centered thinking, from ethical egocentrism to the consideration of the interests and rights of others.

This is what Jean Piaget concluded from his studies of Swiss children. He believed that empathy was an integral part of a child's intellectual development. It doesn't follow, however, that there is some kind of genetic linkage between intellectual capacity and the capacity for empathy. These are two different mental traits. It's more likely that the same selection pressure that favored an increase in intellectual capacity also favored an increase in the capacity for empathy.

It's impossible to build an advanced society unless most of its members have a high capacity for both intelligence and empathy. On an individual level, however, high intelligence can co-exist with low empathy. There have been many cases of ruthless sociopaths who are very intelligent and yet totally self-centered. Such people can be very successful as long as they aren't too numerous. Otherwise, they'll destroy the very society that makes their existence possible.

An advanced society requires a combination of high intelligence and high empathy, although this may come about in different ways. In northwest Europeans, a high intellectual capacity co-exists with high capacities for guilt proneness and affective empathy. In East Asians, a high intellectual capacity co-exists with high capacities for cognitive empathy and pro-social behavior. In other words, there is more emphasis in East Asian societies on learning correct moral rules.

J.Ross , Website March 27, 2018 at 11:48 pm GMT
@Peter Frost

I am not following the credit gift of empathy to East Asians, or the connection of morality and intelligence to the obeying of complex rules, because of the stolen oranges in the Book of Rites and the counterfeit antiques that impressed the Emperor. The Chinese literally explain how to lie in their moral teachings. "Lying" is right there among the morality-guaranteeing complex rules. There are examples in the Talmud I will not specify, or regard as unreasonable, but I will note that nobody saw the Talmud as less than a downright complex system of rules. Some African tribes have rules so stringent (eg, no wet dreams) that nobody could possibly obey them. If anything I would expect that systems of compelled obedience to complex rules guarantee dishonesty. The only alternative is Billy Budd getting the captain to take his side.
What I would start with is power. In China, even in periods of decay or civil war, power is always centralized to a degree only approached in Europe by a few temporarily competent monarchs, and with an effectiveness that has never been accomplished in Europe. I think this and not math scores or cheap shoes is the basis of the elite adoration of the Han. The man who observes that a cow is not a nightingale, or that two and two are four, when the opposite is being claimed by an officer of the government (be it communist, imperial, or partisan) is an idiot. He, and probably his family, maybe his hamlet, will be exterminated with efficiency the European Enlightened Despots could only dream of. Truth, insofar as it is objective, is the hair of Liberty. It cannot exist at all except in the empty space left by the rolling back of power. The trick here is embracing negativism instead of falling into the positivistic trap. We in the West accidentally stumbled across Liberty and Truth and Science, not because we are good, objectively not because we are smarter, but because we just couldn't get that mandate of heaven thing together, despite the unambiguous desires of numerous monarchs. I predict that this will be an unpopular answer but it will not go away.
(but the Japanese are massively more ethical than the Chinese. Yeah. And they are also all but European, especially in a lot of their political history. They dreamed of imitating Chinese centralization but never came close.)
Also, how soon can we expect an update to that graph, now plotting IQ (or PISA, or tetris scores, etc) against something like the Transparency Index? Apologies if this has already been done and I missed it.

James Thompson , Website March 28, 2018 at 9:27 am GMT
@dux.ie

thanks for this interesting additional measure of cheating.

Steve Sailer , Website March 30, 2018 at 6:27 am GMT
Personally, I have a hard time understanding scams. I would make a terrible white collar criminal.
Wally , March 30, 2018 at 7:03 am GMT
@Jonathan Mason

Got examples?

Biff , March 30, 2018 at 7:31 am GMT
Those studies are bunk because everybody lies:

https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2017/jul/09/everybody-lies-how-google-reveals-darkest-secrets-seth-stephens-davidowitz

What can we learn about ourselves from the things we ask online? US data scientist Seth Stephens‑Davidowitz analysed anonymous Google search results, uncovering disturbing truths about our desires, beliefs and prejudices

Tbbh , March 30, 2018 at 8:19 am GMT
@Santoculto

I almost thought I had found a thread on unz where somebody didn't mention joos. Thanks for not disappointing me.

jilles dykstra , March 30, 2018 at 11:47 am GMT
Have no idea where the data come from, but scandals with Dutch politicians seem to increase all the time, most with Rutte's VVD.

Condemned politicians for fraud etc., a novelty.
But until now just one behind bars.

But about honesty, our prime minister Rutte is nicknamed Pinocchio for his lies.
The VVD quickly rid itself of the chairman Keiser, who manipulated himself into possession of the crematoria of the organisation he advised.
The Dutch tax authority presented him with a claim of € 12 million, our FIOD, the authority for fiscal crimes is investigating him.

Condemned business men for fraud, more than we like.
Even the former Philips CEO Boonstra was condemned for trade with foreknowledge.
Solicitors also are not above suspicion any more.

At the recent municipality elections measures were applied to prevent criminals being elected.

Unreliable policemen, also a novelty, the first serious conviction was a short time ago, he sold information from police data bases to criminals.
How he was not discovered earlier, unbelievable, police salaries are insufficient for driving Porsches.

Wizard of Oz , March 30, 2018 at 12:39 pm GMT
Your last paragraph is ill timed and at best insensitive in the opinion of this Australian who once got some pleasure from the game of cricket
anarchyst , March 30, 2018 at 12:48 pm GMT
Catholic bishop Fulton J. Sheen said it best: "It is much easier for an educated person to rationalize evil".
All one has to do is look at abortion supporters who insist that abortion merely removes "a clump of cells", when they damn well know better, that it is HUMAN LIFE that they are destroying.
The old "ends justifies the means" excuse also comes into play, which is used by communist societies to purge millions of those who oppose them, not unlike the purges in the old Soviet Union, China, Cuba, and other communist "paradises".
I would state that it is easier for an educated person to rationalize evil–this including dishonesty
ANON [436] Disclaimer , March 30, 2018 at 1:01 pm GMT
@ThreeCranes

Do I detect a matter of class? The golfer seems not to have been a gentleman belonging to a golf club where proper behaviour was de rigeur, very likely passed from father, uncle and club pro to son. The sort of chap who pays green fees could be a wannabe upwardly mobile agent for subdivided swamp land

ANON [436] Disclaimer , March 30, 2018 at 1:06 pm GMT
@ThreeCranes

PS I gave up golf after my father died 20+ years ago. Not so much that I couldn't match his ethical standards but that after two heart attacks and hip replacements he was still a scratch golfer and all I could do was occasionally outdrive him if my slice or pull allowed.

TG , March 30, 2018 at 1:12 pm GMT
Interesting post. Some additional thoughts.

1. Perhaps smart people are just better at not getting caught?

2. Overall, there is one major factor in the honesty of a society, and that is poverty. When an overpopulated third-world society is crushed into misery, when people cannot earn a half-way decent living – or indeed, any living – through honest effort, eventually they come to cheat. This has been demonstrated in all cultures and all races.

Does integrity promote prosperity? Surely. But the reverse is if anything more powerful: poverty promotes corruption and nepotism. For people to behave honorably, yes there must be a culture of this, but it must also be the case that behaving honorably is not cutting your own throat. Because few people are saints.

Cindy , March 30, 2018 at 2:37 pm GMT
@JackOH

"Found a few bottles of liquor, seals unbroken, in a trash can. "

Dumpster-diving is a different thing than keeping lost goods. I think you're *morally* in the clear, there, even if sorely lacking in judgement. This doesn't seem very wise. Did it not occur to you that they were probably in the TRASH for a reason? Probably not poisonous or anything, since the seals were on. Probably some alcoholic decided to quit drinking. But do you want to take the chance that this wasn't a bootleg batch full of lead? Obviously the answer was yes. Your butt, I reckon

Anonymous [739] Disclaimer , March 30, 2018 at 3:13 pm GMT
We have been flooded here at the University of Chicago by Mainland/Communist Chinese students. There are lots of accusations that the Chinese Communist government assists these students by cheating, getting other English language proficient students to take the English part of the SAT tests.

There appear to be lots and lots of Mainland Chinese/Communist China students here who supposedly aced the English SAT test but can't seem to speak English.

Twodees Partain , March 30, 2018 at 3:23 pm GMT
@Miro23

"like The Economist did with their wallet test – quite a good experiment."

But, The Economist is hardly a bastion of truth. I would tend to dismiss their entire story of the wallet experiment as a fabrication, having caught their writers in so many lies.

Willem , March 30, 2018 at 4:06 pm GMT
I interpreted the Simon Gächter graph as follows: the more money a country has, the more honest the citizens are.

Perhaps one should do an experiment and make countries like Tanzania as rich as e.g. The Netherlands, and then do the comparisons.

Same applies to IQ.

jacques sheete , March 30, 2018 at 5:05 pm GMT

Do Brighter Minds Incline to Honesty?

Possibly.

But certainly that accounts for the fact that politicians are dull, ignorant, dissemblers at best.

In many governments the candidates for the highest stations are above the law; and, if they can attain the object of their ambition, they have no fear of being called to account for the means by which they acquired it. They often endeavour, therefore, not only by fraud and falsehood, the ordinary and vulgar arts of intrigue and cabal; but sometimes by the perpetration of the most enormous crimes, by murder and assassination, by rebellion and civil war, to supplant and destroy those who oppose or stand in the way of their greatness.

Adam Smith, Essays Pt I, Sec III, Chap III. ed. Joseph Black and James Hutton (London: Alex. Murray & Son, 1869). 3/30/2018. http://oll.libertyfund.org/titles/2721#Smith_Essays1649_206

denk , March 30, 2018 at 5:36 pm GMT
Uk, the perpetrator of Iraq WMD and the current Russiagate, a more 'ethical' country than China ?

What a joke !

jilles dykstra , March 30, 2018 at 5:50 pm GMT
@Willem

Honesty to me seems a cultural phenomenon.
Once people get away with dishonesty, others think 'why not me ?'.

The Dutch erosion, in my recollection, already began in the seventies, with leftist people, at the time social democrats.
It was said then 'thinking left, filling pockets at the right'.
People as my father, life long socialists, left the party in great numbers.
It took a long time for THE socialist party, PvdA, to disappear, until the last parliamentary elections.
The self destruction had much to do with EU support, socialism is at odds with globalisation, even within the EU.

Few in the USA will have followed all the French scandals before the last presidential elections.
Even Macron was accused of not declaring all his possessions.
And indeed, I also cannot understand how he spent or lost the millions he got while working for the Rothschild bank.

Another well known politician, presidential candidate, cannot now remember the name, disappeared after gifts for suits for some € 50.000 were published, there was also a very expensive watch, the job his wife had, what she in fact did, nobody understands, and the temporary jobs for his children.
When one sees the small castle where the family lives one understands that he could not buy his suits himself.

Now at last there seems to be sufficient proof against Sarkozy.

Now many French presidents were persecuted after their immunity ended, when they no longer were president.
But the frauds etc. they seem to have perpetrated seem worse and worse, in the Sarko case, intimidating a judge, among other things.
When Hollande will be persecuted, I wonder.
He had a reputation for sacking editors in chief.

jilles dykstra , March 30, 2018 at 5:53 pm GMT
@denk

Ask Ghandi, alas he does not live, when Britain was an ethical country.
Just a few years ago, in BBCW Hard Talk, I saw an Indian minister getting quite angry 'the British did not have to teach the Indians anything'.

JackOH , March 30, 2018 at 6:01 pm GMT
@Cindy

Cindy, both gut and butt survived my "rescue" hooch. I did some due diligence: examined the bottles, carefully tasted the contents, etc. My guess was a domestic quarrel in the parking garage over the high-end vodka and liqueurs, perhaps over someone's drinking problem, and the quarrel was settled by chucking the booze.

" . . . [S]orely lacking in judgment." Not really. My judgment turned out to be okay, because I was informed by the totality of the circumstances and then made my call. Had the booze been low-end stuff found in an unfamiliar location, etc., I might have judged differently.

BTW-I didn't dumpster-dive. The booze was clearly visible at the top of the trash can.

denk , March 30, 2018 at 6:19 pm GMT
@jilles dykstra

How did they measure such 'honesty index' ?
Placing 100 wallets in a park and observe how many are returned to the owners ?

But when the anglos lie, they always lie big time !

Goebel famously oberved .

The English follow the principle that when one lies, it should be a big lie, and one should stick to it. They keep up their lies, even at the risk of looking ridiculous

Waging wars by false pretexts surely is the highest form of duplicity ?
They dont call them perfidious albions for nuthin you know !

Another Realist , March 30, 2018 at 6:24 pm GMT
How does the author explain the link between the supposed highest IQ group – the Jews, and their reputation for utmost dishonesty, greed and lust throughout history? Same goes for the Chinese.

Propensity for Honesty is the biggest reason why we need to restrict immigration from low trust cultures, i.e. all 3rd world countries. It's why they're 3rd world, because they are low trust, everyone is dishonest from the top down, the few honest ones are called "stupid" and get ripped off left and right. The more we import from these cultures, the more dishonest our society will become, this includes all of Asia, Latin America, Middle East, Africa, Southern & Eastern Europe esp. Russia. The only truly honest people in the world are Northwestern Protestant Europeans, and maybe the Japanese. All other groups are dishonest.

Joe Wong , March 30, 2018 at 8:18 pm GMT
@res

Interesting work? This article is a pure misuse of statistics, a fabrication and a classic work of evil minded Eurocentrist attempting to give a new lease of life to their declining rotten Eurocentrism in facing of the rising progressive, peaceful, and pragmatic East.

Look at the graph, its racist Eurocentrism is glaring, all the Western nations are on the good side while rest of the world on the bad side. History has shown all those on the good side are liars, cheaters, murderers, bandits, and pirates, while those on the bad side are the victims of those perpetrators on the good side. The missing of the USA in the chart makes this article an unapologetic white supremacy lie.

To study the link between brightness and honesty, it should pull data from the same pool of population who are in the same environment, i.e. within a nation, then we even can study whether cognitive ability, intellectual development, moral awareness, culture factor, and institutions have any effect on honesty and their relationships.

Besides in spite of being bright, and having cognitive ability, intellectual development, moral awareness, culture factor and strong institutions, the West still bombs, kills and waterboards others on the fabricated phantom allegations as humanitarian intervention without showing remorse; and recently the West lied about the poisoning episode in UK, and brought the world to the edge of anther world war crisis, those evidences prove the Western societies are not honest despite the qualities they processed as prerequisite for honesty, it seems it proves the West is either hypocritical or innate psychopathic.

jacques sheete , March 30, 2018 at 9:18 pm GMT
@jilles dykstra

Ask Ghandi, alas he does not live, when Britain was an ethical country.

Exactly. What a pack of criminals. They were much worse and for a longer period of time, than what they accused the Nazis of doing.

Churchill refused to divert supplies away from already well-supplied British troops at the same time he allegedly blocked American and Canadian ships from delivering aid to India either. Nor would he allow the Indians to help themselves: the colonial government forbade the country from using its own ships or currency reserves to help the starving masses. Meanwhile, London pushed up the price of grain with hugely inflated purchases, making it unaffordable for the dying and destitute. Most-chillingly of all, when the government of Delhi telegrammed to tell him people were dying, Churchill allegedly only replied to ask why Gandhi hadn't died yet.

If all this is true -- and documents support it -- then Winston Churchill may well have starved to death as many innocent people as Stalin did in the Ukrainian genocide. Could the man who held out against Hitler really be capable of such an atrocity? Judging by the rest of this list, it wouldn't be surprising.

https://listverse.com/2014/02/04/10-evil-crimes-of-the-british-empire/

jacques sheete , March 30, 2018 at 9:39 pm GMT
The honest and bright Brits are responsible for starvation in prison camps decades before the Nazis were supposed to have done their thing.:

Picture of Brit camp victim (Boer War) according to the article linked above.:

lavoisier , Website March 30, 2018 at 9:56 pm GMT
@ANON

I cannot play golf without committing a certain amount of larceny. In my mind a mulligan is a reasonable option to excuse a particularly poorly played shot. And I have been known to sweeten my lie on the not rare occasion, which, of course, is a form of lying.

I have often wondered if my ease at dishonesty on the links might suggest a propensity towards darker deeds?

And don't even ask me about gimme putts. That for sure must reflect a lower intelligence!

Joe Wong , March 30, 2018 at 10:33 pm GMT
@James Thompson

Who decides who cheats or being dishonesty? Is misleading advertising cheating? Is empty campaign promises cheating? Is abusing legal loopholes cheating? Is putting one's self-interest ahead of the ones they supposed to serve cheating? Is price fixing cheating? Are cartels of all kind cheating? Are selective reporting, wrongful labelling, and spreading ideology cheating? . . .

Mind you, the people involved in the above activities are all bright, well educated, intelligent, having strong institutions, within well-functioning societies, and a sense of moral responsibilities too, would they be more than 16% in the western societes?

Sollipsist , March 30, 2018 at 11:08 pm GMT
The assumptions behind this are so fragile and unsupportable.

Honesty, as with most of the Judeo-Christian values, largely serves to keep the compliant majority self-correcting while the predatory and parasitic top and bottom of society maintain a more productive relativistic approach – long term dishonesty for the elites, short term dishonesty for the undesirables. In-group honesty is always far more valued than universal honesty – whether you're talking about stockbrokers or Romani.

The most intelligent in any class or group are far more likely to utilize dishonesty when it best serves their needs. To do otherwise would be a clear sign of lack of intelligence.

The idea that intelligent people are more likely to see the purpose of honesty in the long term is not only an unsupportable assumption, it's also ignoring the countless undeniable historical instances of intelligent leaders deploying adaptive fictions to achieve positive social goals (anything from religion to the concept of inalienable rights).

Anyone who uses the phrase "speaking truth to power" can absolutely be counted upon to be utterly dishonest when that power comes knocking.

Art , March 30, 2018 at 11:48 pm GMT
As a boy I had the privilege to attend a Catholic grade school. Part of the education was to go to confession. Admitting to a third party your wrongs, is very powerful. Forgiving the past frees one. Being truthful builds character, and getting over the past is a blessing. It was a struggle to be totally truthful all the time. As a mid to late teen, I fell away from Catholicism.

In my early twenties I came back to believing that truthfulness is the best policy. I attribute that to the Catholic culture and the confessional. I would not say that it was my intelligence that led me.

Think Peace -- Art

Joe Wong , March 31, 2018 at 1:17 am GMT
@Art

Confession has nothing to do with honesty; it breeds psychopath, unrepentance, irresponsibility and repeat offending. The churches use confession to cleanse perpetrators' sins, so the perpetrators can repeat their crimes without moral burden; this is not hypothesis, history bear witness of such fact. This is the trait of the Western culture, it reflects in all aspects of the westerners' behaviour. Most common expression of such morally defunct mentality is that the western governments and officials have no trouble to apologize the wrongs they have done, but they keep on doing the same wrong over and over again after apologizing. The Native Americans are the most abused victim of such morally defunct practice.

The churches use confession to recruit and dominate its members (mentally colonized serfs), expand their domains. Confession is one of the most effective mechanisms that corrupt the basic decency of humanity.

denk , March 31, 2018 at 1:39 am GMT
@jacques sheete

Here's another ROFLLMAO,

China much more aggressive than UK ,
WTF !

How did they deduce that ,
Comparing how many people jump queue in UK and China ?

Lies, damn lies and statistics

Coming from those who hog the top 100 hoax of the century chart.

hehehhehe

utu , March 31, 2018 at 2:13 am GMT
@Joe Wong

Perhaps going to confession or a dose of Christianity would be good for Chinese.

Twodees Partain , March 31, 2018 at 2:20 am GMT
@jacques sheete

Adam Smith apparently had their number when he was alive. It seems that little has changed in the quality of politicians between the 19th and 21st centuries. If anything, today's politicians are even more dimwitted and venal. The average Congress member is a moron, and nearly inarticulate in unscripted speaking.

I really enjoyed reading Henry Mencken's observations on political campaigns of the early 20th century. He also seemed to enjoy making those observations as well. It comes through in the way he describes the candidates.

Twodees Partain , March 31, 2018 at 2:26 am GMT
@denk

The government of the UK seems completely unconcerned with ethics, in the same way the US government is. Most members of both governments seem, to me, to be morally retarded.

Malcolm Y , March 31, 2018 at 2:54 am GMT
Since this is statistics there are no counterexamples. But there is one giant "counterexample"
denk , March 31, 2018 at 3:27 am GMT
@Twodees Partain

which begs the question .

How did these two 'ethical' countries keep churning out world class psychopaths as leaders .since 1600 ?

dux.ie , March 31, 2018 at 5:45 am GMT
Flash! Flash! Flash! Stop the press. This is not yet 1st April.

Currently there are a lot of news about cheating in sports, e.g. cricket. Out of a whim the relationship of sports with academic cheating is tested. The OECD PISA project has data on the percentage of students who exercise before or after school PctExercise, and

PctCheatRpt=+1.044*PctExercise-46.25; #n=29; Rsq=0.234; p=0.007889 ** (V Sig)

It is very statistically significant that PctExercise is positively highly correlated to academic cheating. The effect is more than double that for the other percentage variables whether they are statistically significant or not. If students spend too much time on tracks and fields and little time at home studying the results can easily be inferred. Now you know those loud mouths screaming about cheating in another countries and that the students there spend too much time studying, they are on average themselves doing most of the academic cheatings and they might be trying to divert attention away from them.

To be fair, the situation for the nerds should also be checked. The OECD PISA has data on the percentage of students who have more than 4 hours per week of off-school maths tuition PctMathTuitGt4hr,

PctCheatRpt=-0.835*PctMathTuitGt4hr+31.81; #n=28; Rsq=0.0552; p=0.2287 (NotSig)

It is statisticaly not significant. What about those academically very competitive, the percentage who wanted to be the best PctWantBest,

PctCheatRpt=-0.445*PctWantBest+54.07; #n=29; Rsq=0.222; p=0.009944 ** (V Sig)

It is statistically very significant that PctWantBest negatively correlated with cheating, i.e, on average the more academically competitive they are the lesser they will cheat.

It is intuitively that most self-confident students will not cheat. The OECD data can be transformed and normalized into confident quotient CQ similar to the IQ scale where CQ ≥ 115 is considered to be over-confident. However,

PctCheatRpt = -0.362*ConfidantQuotient +61.62; #n=29; Rsq=0.1289; p=0.05581 (NotSig)

Two datapoints are far from the rest and are on opposite sides of the regression line, by excluding them,

PctCheatRpt = -0.473*ConfidentQuotient2 +73.25; #n=27; Rsq=0.1653; p=0.03535 * (SIg)

CQ is negatively correlated to cheating rate as expected.

The summary of the results,

http://tinypic.com/view.php?pic=10pvbyt&s=9

jacques sheete , March 31, 2018 at 10:42 am GMT
@Joe Wong

Most common expression of such morally defunct mentality is that the western governments and officials have no trouble to apologize the wrongs they have done, but they keep on doing the same wrong over and over again after apologizing.

Amen!

What's even worse is the goofy idea that one is automatically "forgiven" if s/he's a "believer." It's the works vs faith idea. Some of those people feel free to break every rule in the book (even the 10 supposedly written in stone) with complete impunity.

Those people routinely engage in behavior that's as disgusting as those from the the tribe who think they're "chosen."

G-wd's special ones, goy and non-goy, are forgiven in advance I guess.

jacques sheete , March 31, 2018 at 11:05 am GMT
@Twodees Partain

If anything, today's politicians are even more dimwitted and venal. The average Congress member is a moron, and nearly inarticulate in unscripted speaking.

True.

I think much the same could be said for all hierarchical systems and that includes religious as well as academic ones. I've always been as much amused as amazed at how dimwitted and venal priests and professors usually are.

Frauds-R-Us.

jilles dykstra , March 31, 2018 at 11:19 am GMT
@Joe Wong

Rereading this reaction comes to mind
Edward W. Said & Christopher Hitchens, ed., Blaming the Victims, Spurious scholarship and the Palestinian question', 1988, London

Anonymous [184] Disclaimer , March 31, 2018 at 11:29 am GMT
@JackOH

"[S]orely lacking in judgment." Not really. My judgment turned out to be okay"

No, it was a bad call regardless of how it turned out. The risk-reward ratio was off the chart.

jacques sheete , March 31, 2018 at 11:30 am GMT
@denk

which begs the question .

How did these two 'ethical' countries keep churning out world class psychopaths as leaders .since 1600 ?

Beg no longer, fine sir! This dude may have an answer.

Henceforth, Britain will do the bidding of her real masters ; she has
become the tool of the schemers against all she holds dear, namely, her
faith, her patriotism, traditions, civilisation. She grants the " returned "
aliens equality of civil rights ; they may and do become mayors over
Christian population, and within a short time Britain is ruled by a
Jewish Prime Minister, Disraeli, first and foremost a Jew and the
flunkey of the powerful Rothschild financiers.

One of the consequences of this disastrous political mistake is the
transformation of the national attitude of Great Britain and her
colonies into that of the British Empire. Disraeli who inspired it
knew what he was scheming for, the British people did not. But with
him, Zionism is carried up to the very heights of the British Throne, a
Zionist World Empire is on the high road to realisation.

-Leslie Fry, "the Jews and the British Empire," 1935

https://archive.org/stream/FryLeslieTheJewsAndTheBritishEmpire/Fry_Leslie_-_The_jews_and_the_British_Empire_djvu.txt

He musta been a kunspirasee theerist er an antee-Semite er sumpin. Prolly lo IQ and jellis too.

Dieter Kief , March 31, 2018 at 11:37 am GMT
@Dieter Kief

In the light of what Jonathan Haidt in the above linked video says with regards to David Perkin's findings, I tend to say this question of yours

Do Brighter Minds Incline to Honesty?

has to be answered: "Yes. But ."

The But has to do with the the history of the term "honesty".

People might say wrong things, while being (and feeling!) honest, because honesty is not necessarily rooted in speaking the truth.

Honesty is a social category alltogether (with close ties to knighthood, chivalry and the like). It therefor is a category, which in it's very core hints at obedience and fellowship, and that's at times what keeps people away from speaking the truth – cf. David Perkins and Jonathan Haidt above (ok – full circle).

Joe Wong , March 31, 2018 at 12:42 pm GMT
@utu

Hit-and-run is common all over the world not just in China, it is a sign of moral decay, confusion, and irresponsibility. Those perpetrators must be denounced.

But if one follows the West or the unrepentant war criminal Japanese, it is easy to white wash those hit-and-run crimes by saying the percentage of such crime in China is way lower than in the US though the absolute number might be higher, so Chinese is more honest than average in the world.

On the other hand killing people with car faces less consequences in the West, most perpetrators in the West get slap on the wrist for such crime, such as suspension of driving license, insurance company paid compensation, short term imprisonment, or get way free by claiming medical conditions, but in China the perpetrators may have to pay their lives for their crimes. It seems the West does not have a balanced morality, harsh on the victims and lenient on the criminals.

denk , March 31, 2018 at 2:18 pm GMT
@jacques sheete

In the honesty index graph,
Germany is higher than China, OK, thats fair.

As for the five eyes lies , their rightful place is right at the bottom.

UK [half of fukus] the ethical country ?
hehehehhe

Web Of Deceit: Britain's Real Foreign Policy
by Mark Curtis

In his explosive new book, Mark Curtis reveals a new picture of Britain's role in the world since 1945 and in the 'war against terrorism' by offering a comprehensive critique of the Blair government's foreign policy. Curtis argues that Britain is an 'outlaw state', often a violator of international law and ally of many repressive regimes. He reasons not only that Britain's foreign policies are generally unethical but that they are also making the world more dangerous and unequal.

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/1128541.Web_Of_Deceit

denk , March 31, 2018 at 2:21 pm GMT
@utu

kid,

You believe in gawd ?
I pray to the all mighty every day to stop the great satan,
a fat lot of good it does tho !

so how ?

denk , March 31, 2018 at 2:30 pm GMT
@Joe Wong

that utu kid oughtta go out more .

He spend all day in the basement and he thought he knows the world by watching some dubious youtube videos, forchrissake !

hehehhe

Anonymous [184] Disclaimer , March 31, 2018 at 2:59 pm GMT
@jacques sheete

Interesting. Reverse Midas Touch can be a very real phenomenon, apparently.

So who chose them and what were they chosen for?

Anon [436] Disclaimer , March 31, 2018 at 5:03 pm GMT
@anarchyst

Why do you condemn over 100,000 years of homo sapiens behaviour. Destroying human lives has been continuously the most effective natural way to achieve important utilitarian ends tight up to today. And given the ancient Hebrew enthusiasm for genocide is it surprising that God's Ten Commandments not only said nothing about abortion but assumed that limiting killing was about the best that could be hoped for.

utu , March 31, 2018 at 6:16 pm GMT
@denk

Quality is also an aspect of honesty: both individual and institutional.

denk , March 31, 2018 at 6:54 pm GMT
Did I mention the top 100 hoaxes of the century chart, kid ?

Here's a partial list,

Iraq WMD
IRAQ babies incubators
Racak 'massacre'
RUSSIAGATE,
Chinagate,
Indo./China war 1962
Indon genocide 1965
GCHQ fake foto
Tibet fake foto,
Tibet genocide,
Libya
Syria
Sinking of the Maine,
Gulf of Tonkin,
911
War OF terror,
R2p[lunder]
TAM 'massacre'
Tibet 2008
Xinjiang 2009

100 reasons why fukus should be at the bottom of the 'honesty' chart !

utu , March 31, 2018 at 8:13 pm GMT
Chinese the most dishonest, Japanese and British the least, study finds

http://www.scmp.com/lifestyle/article/1879850/chinese-most-dishonest-japanese-and-british-least-study-finds

Why do Chinese students think it's OK to cheat?

http://www.scmp.com/comment/insight-opinion/article/1974986/why-do-chinese-students-think-its-ok-cheat

99% OF PUBG'S BANNED CHEATERS ARE FROM CHINA

http://www.ign.com/articles/2018/02/16/99-of-pubgs-banned-cheaters-are-from-china

utu , March 31, 2018 at 8:19 pm GMT
@Joe Wong

those hit-and-run crimes

These are not just hit and run. In China you do not run until you make sure the victim is dead. And if the victim is not dead you hit them second time to make sure he/she is dead and then you run. This is very pragmatic and congruent with all Chinese philosophical systems. That's why I suggested to your compatriot (denk) here that a bit of Christian mercy and compassion would do Chinese some good.

Philip Owen , March 31, 2018 at 8:22 pm GMT
@jacques sheete

As Amryata Sen has pointed out. The problem in Bengal was not a lack of food but the lack of purchasing power by the poorest peasants. Hoarding by merchants is a traditional driver of famine in India. The Punjab actually had a good harvest but Bengal ate rice. Churchill's nvolvement was ncidental. India was governed com India, often by Indians. Churchill was an outrageous racist but by no means representative of the British of the time. He lost the post war election.

Philip Owen , March 31, 2018 at 8:24 pm GMT
@jacques sheete

WYes. Grotesque incompetence rather than the intended result but morally wrong just the same.

Wizard of Oz , April 1, 2018 at 1:39 am GMT
@utu

I am surprised that you posted that first link. Its 1500 tested people (selected how?) from 15 countries simply reminded me that the "Climategate" emails also belonged to the University of East Anglia.

I didn't take the time to understand WTF PUBG was all about (third link).

As to the second link it is indeed interesting to learn of what appears to be a formal recognition by the Chinese Communist Party that part of what contributed to the earlier economic success of the West was trust and comparative honesty (as Amy Wax might point out).

Joe Wong , April 1, 2018 at 1:58 am GMT
@utu

First of all Christians have no mercy, and they only have crusade and conversion. Christians are cult. The Christians have been committing crimes against humanity, crimes against peace and war crimes using evil and sadist inquisition methods for a very very long time. Their forte is racial and culture genocide. Before Columbus time they only did their carnage between themselves and Muslims within the European continent and ME. After Columbus they spread their plague all over the world.

The most unfortunate victims are the Americans (from North to South). Christian not only took the American's land, and killed them into nearly extinct, they also burnt all books of South Americans, so that there is no indigenous South American civilization left to tell their history and to refute what the Christian casted them as savages.

In China during the late Qing time, the Christians treated Chinese culture and traditions as witchcraft, backed by their governments' guns they used extraterritorial right to expand their control of people and land with organized violence and insidious crimes. Their unscrupulous activities forced Chinese to resist thru Boxer movement because Qing Court was incompetent. The West labelled Boxer as terrorists and crashed them with Eight Nations Alliance armed intervention, Christian was a major force that caused China Century Humiliation.

Since WWII all wars were led by the Christians, their false Christian mercy calls paved the way for the Western governments and war mongers to bomb, kill and waterboard on moral high ground just like their barbaric Christian forebears who have done to the native South Americans and rest of the world.

That kind of morally defunct drivers are not unique to China, they appeare in the West too. In some incidences the driver in the West made sure nobody survives in the other car by pushing the car over the road side, so they have better chance not to be convicted due to no witness.

While guys using assault rifles mowing down tens of school kids for no reasons and claim it is their constitution rights to do so, and tens of millions of killed, tortured and maimed by the NATO false flag wars, why don't you suggest your compatriots in the USA and other NATO nations that a bit of Christian mercy and compassion would do their souls some good? Is it because Christian mercy is myth, fantasy and snakeoil?

Joe Wong , April 1, 2018 at 2:37 am GMT
@utu

You are being racist, propagating the pink skin pigs' trashes in HK irresponsibly. You should know those noxious racist trolls in the SCMP are posted by the pink skin pigs and their mentally colonized wannabes in HK out of resentment and frustration, because they lost their colonial privileges in HK and they are being rejected as uneducated unscrupulous colonials back home. They fell from master caste to the bottom of the society and become worthless trash.

Japanese are unrepentant war criminals, their whole society are liars and they have been lying since WWII about their war crimes, their past, their present and their future, they even are lying about the massive toxic nuclear leaking in the Fukushima cripple nuclear power plants that are causing millions of people died of cancer and extinction of marine creatures. While the British is the mentor of the Japanese.

Britain was a ruthless global tyrant and liar, but you seem to believe that all the crimes against humanity and peace and war crimes British committed around the world can be forgiven and glossed over by claiming Britain a democracy; what a lie and morally defunct double think evil psychopathic expression. People said British imitates the Romans and the American is born out of the British, no wonder the American is adopting the same double think logic to white wash and gloss over the war crimes, crimes against humanity and peace they have been committing around the world.

Winston Churchill was a classic imperialist with no moral bearing, he believed for the empire everything goes. WWII is nothing but a dog-eat-dog play rough over the monopoly to plunder the rest of the world; they squandered all the wealth they obtained thru stealing, looting and murdering hundreds of millions of people all over the world in that scrabbling.

About cheating in the exams you must have never seen what the Greeks and Indian are capable of. PUBG is sour grape, they cannot beat the Chinese so they banned Chinese on the fabricated allegation, just like the Opium Wars, the British could not beat Chinese manufactured goods, so they used Opium and wars to steal and cheat Chinese wealth.

lavoisier , Website April 1, 2018 at 2:44 am GMT
@denk

Death should be knocking on Iran's door and wearing a Star of David effacing the American flag.

Wizard of Oz , April 1, 2018 at 2:50 am GMT
@denk

Why do you waste time displaying your prejudices without even acknowledging what question was asked? Your English is up to it – just – so you have no excuse.

lavoisier , Website April 1, 2018 at 2:57 am GMT
@Joe Wong

Your diatribe is a bit on the simplistic side.

All Utu was pointing out is that deliberately killing someone with a car to escape prosecution is pretty heinous behavior and does suggest something really wrong with the Chinese culture at a fundamental level.

And the treatment of animals in China is generally deplorable compared with Western standards with little concern for their well being. How does this obvious cruelty fit on the ethical plane?

Ethical behavior among human beings is probably more unusual than we would like to believe and we can all be better people. The Chinese are no exception to that rule. If Christian ethics or Buddhist ethics can advance that cause, I support this.

Wizard of Oz , April 1, 2018 at 2:57 am GMT
@jacques sheete

I was intrigued to find on the listverse.com site some readable and/or intriguing stuff, e.g. on Charles Darwin, but your particular, well debunked, choice of anachronistic and inaccurate story to believe and post suggests to me that anyone whose intellectual standards allow them to rely on one of those list (usually of 10) sites should not pollute UR. Are you aware that people are paid $100 (with possibility of bonuses) for those lists?

Joe Wong , April 1, 2018 at 2:57 am GMT
@utu

You are wrong, not everybody demands the same quality, and Chinese provides different quality for different needs in the market. Besides you get what you paid for, it is fundamental principle of capitalism if you don't count the first principle of capitalism which is monopoly which is charge as much as you can bear and cost is irrelevant, that is not only cheating and it is also blackmailing and looting.

The video just claims but shows no proof what the guy claims. Chinese machinery and parts are taking more markets around the world, this simply fact proves the video is made out of bad faith, and pure propaganda.

Coins can stand up on Chinese High Speed Rail running more than 300km/hr, no German, Japanese or any other nation can do that, it proves the bearing quality in China HSR is unprecedented, it further proves the guys in the video is a troll out of jealous, resentful and fear Chinese achievements.

denk , April 1, 2018 at 3:33 am GMT
@utu

hey kiddie,

Spare me all those China videos' [1]

In case you still havent noticed,
Im not here to defend China.
I allow its position below Germany is quite fair.

But,
Can you give me one good reason why UK , that agent provocateur extraordinaire , is so high up that honesty chart ?

denk , April 1, 2018 at 3:41 am GMT
@utu

In China you do not run until you make sure the victim is dead.

cuz you watch some videos from youtube,
forchrissake !

Can you give me some credible statistics , the percentage of such alleged crimes in China ?

How does such alleged crimes stack up against fukus state terrorism like double tapping , sniping at women and chidlren, obliterating the whole neighborhood of a suspect hideout just to make sure, ?

And .
How does this elevate fukus from its rightful position at the bottom of that honesty chart,
thats all I wanna know ?

denk , April 1, 2018 at 3:44 am GMT
@Wizard of Oz

To think that I recently commended you for some improvement on your comprehension !
, now you go back to my bozo file,

Anonymous [216] Disclaimer , April 1, 2018 at 8:03 am GMT
@Joe Wong

It is propaganda. People tell me that the same stories were circulated when Japan was becoming a tech powerhouse. It will probably take another 5-10 years before it dissipates.

Wizard of Oz , April 1, 2018 at 10:01 am GMT
@denk

Don't avoid the issue. How do you justify your use of the word "aggressive"?

Joe Wong , April 1, 2018 at 11:42 am GMT
@lavoisier

I merely point out the misconception about Christians supported by historical facts. Indian treats animals even worse while China has humane protection laws, it seems you are as impartial as utu.

Joe Wong , April 1, 2018 at 11:58 am GMT
@Anonymous

Chinese is not Japanese. Japanese only steals, their forte is made refinement on the stolen.

A lot of the American and British have been saying China will collapse 30 years already, you are one of them.

Wizard of Oz , April 1, 2018 at 2:52 pm GMT
Your first paragraph comes over as so silly that perhaps it shouldn't surprise that your second paragraph is, to say the least, extremely puzzling. Where did Anonymous [216] say or suggest that China eould collapse? The post you are replying to implies no such thing.
utu , April 1, 2018 at 3:32 pm GMT
@Joe Wong

After every of your visit by you at unz.com I keep wondering to what degree your primitive chauvinism is representative of China. How many millions primitive and hateful Joe Wongs are there? Then I wonder that perhaps you are not Chinese. That you are employed by enemies of China. That Chinese are too smart to show their cards that early in the game. If they really hate they would not show it because only fools show hate.

You, see I carry a positive stereotype of Chinese which is supported by my personal experience with them but you and your sidekick deng do everything possible to undermine it and change it into: Yes, Chinese can be really stupid and thus more dangerous than we thought. Watch, out for stupid and dangerous Chinese. Go to the Plan B: Poke NK and the Rocket Man more to the point that Japan get so paranoid that it starts arming itself with nukes. If there is to be a war let it start with the yellow races killing each other. They hate each other anyway. Ask Joe Wong if you have any doubts.

So what is it? Are you Chinese or an agent of revanchist militarist unreformed Chinese hating interests of Japanese imperialism? And then, if you are Chinese, how many more stupid ones like you are there?

denk , April 1, 2018 at 4:24 pm GMT
@utu

I carry a positive stereotype of Chinese which is supported by my personal experience

sic !

your sidekick deng

Ad hominem is the last resort of the scoundrel.

Why dont you try answering my questions kid ?

*How do you propose to get rid of that plague of the 21C ?

http://www.unz.com/jthompson/do-brighter-minds-incline-to-honesty/#comment-2267831

Why are you evading the issue but indulge in China bashing ?
Are you a diversion agent ?

*Do you agree that UK should be right at the bottom of that honesty chart ?

lavoisier , Website April 1, 2018 at 5:45 pm GMT
@Joe Wong

No. I am unimpressed with the morality of most humans and suspicious of attempts to paint ourselves as more virtuous than we are.

But there are certainly aspects of Christian morality that can serve as a framework to guide human behavior–wherever one lives or whoever you are.

Your diatribe blaming Christians for all the evil of the world is incredibly dishonest and naive.

Anonymous [442] Disclaimer , Website April 1, 2018 at 6:14 pm GMT
What is the difference in per capita income between southern europeans and scandinavians? I think this also plays a role.
Joe Wong , April 2, 2018 at 1:25 am GMT
@lavoisier

It seems your only defense for the Christians is denying historical facts, and stating something that Christians are not.

Naïve? Are you saying the crimes against humanity, crimes against peace and war crimes committed by the Christians were carefully planned, deeply thought through, determined and maturely decided like holocaust?

Bible is zero-sum based narrative, the fundamental dogma of Christianity is "you are either with us or you are with the devil" therefore all Christians have a mission to convert everyone else into "one of us" on the moral high ground with whatever means necessary, Christians believe whatever the Christians do it is necessary with good intention, even bombing, killing and waterboarding on the fabricated allegations is humanitarian intervention.

Christianity assumes humans are primitive and born evil, they need divine force to threaten (go to hell) them not to do harm, and it is tribal. While some other civilizations believe humans are sane, rational, intelligent and compassionate, humans do not need divine force to tell them how to behave properly in order to achieve peace, harmony, cooperation, development and mutual benefits, just logical explanation and some directions will be suffice.

If the past can be any reference, the crimes have been committed against humanity in the name of Christianity, it is doubtful that Christians have any morality, mind you it does not mean the Bible does not have good points in it, there are other way better ways and means to serve as a framework to guide human behaviour for the good.

Joe Wong , April 2, 2018 at 2:25 am GMT
@utu

Chauvinism is someone claims what he is not and based that false claim to demonize others what they are not on the moral high ground, this is what the West has been doing since 1492.

Stating facts does not involve emotion, so please refrain yourself from sensationalize any topic unnecessary that makes dialog on difficult issues impossible, Theresa May and Nikki Haley are not your role model to follow.

For over seventy years the US has dominated Asia, ravaging the continent with two major wars in Korea and Indo-China with millions of casualties, and multiple counter-insurgency interventions in Indonesia, Thailand, Malaysia, the Philippines, Timor, Myanmar, Pakistan and Afghanistan. The strategic goal has been to expand its military and political power, exploit the economies and resources.

Before WWII, the American is just one of the Western imperialists ravaged and wreaked havoc of Asia with barbaric wars, illicit drugs like Opium, slavery, stealing, robbing, looting, plundering, murdering, torturing, exploiting, polluting, culture genocide, 'pious' fanaticism, unmatchable greed and extreme brutality. In fact it is hard to tell the difference between the American and the unrepentant war criminal Japanese who is more lethal and barbaric to Asians until the Pearl Harbour incident.

James Thompson , Website April 2, 2018 at 11:27 am GMT
@utu

instructive comparison

lavoisier , Website April 2, 2018 at 3:57 pm GMT
@Joe Wong

If the past can be any reference, the crimes have been committed against humanity in the name of Christianity, it is doubtful that Christians have any morality

Do you really believe this???? No morality in any Christians?

You are even more locked into hate and racism than I thought possible.

Have you attended any of the lectures by the anti-racist Tim Wise??

You might get some talking points from him that can help you in your future postings.

And keep up the good work, you have a bright future in any number of our MSM outlets.

Daniel Chieh , April 2, 2018 at 4:23 pm GMT
@utu

And you have not even met the hardcore commies, who would like to explain that the only thing that Mao did wrong, terribly wrong was that he did not kill nearly enough people.

And the answer to your question is that there are idiots in every country and race, though in China they are mostly excluded from political positions(because insanity is not welcome), so they troll online message boards within and without China.

Like various other fanatics and crazies, they can be entertaining in the appropriate context. If you've been to Finland, he's the equivalent of the old drunk men yelling propositions at girls in some train stations of the small towns. Entertaining in small doses.

utu , April 2, 2018 at 7:57 pm GMT
@Daniel Chieh

Entertaining in small doses.

I think I reached my limit dose of Joe Wong and deng already.

denk , April 3, 2018 at 4:46 am GMT
@utu

So you couldnt even give one good reason why UK should be on top of that 'honesty chart' eh ?

well I can give you 100 why UK should be right at the bottom,

Perfidious albions
exhibit one

How to ethnic cleanse an entire island ?
Declare the residents as tresspassers !

'What the files also reveal is an imperious attitude of brutality. In August 1966, Sir Paul Gore-Booth, permanent under-secretary at the Foreign Office, wrote: "We must surely be very tough about this. The object of the exercise was to get some rocks that will remain ours.

There will be no indigenous population except seagulls." At the end of this is a handwritten note by DH Greenhill, later Baron Greenhill:

"Along with the Birds go some Tarzans or Men Fridays " Under the heading, "Maintaining the fiction", another official urges his colleagues to reclassify the islanders as "a floating population" and to "make up the rules as we go along".

https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2004/oct/02/foreignpolicy.comment

Perfidious albions at its best !

heheheheheh

I think I reached my limit dose of Joe Wong and deng already.

yEAH,
Scurry away with tail between your legs and declare victory,

that'd be
perfidious albions exhibit 2

hehehhehe

Chris2345 , April 3, 2018 at 7:16 pm GMT
@joe Wong You are a foolish, ignorant person. At least in regard to Christianity. The perpetrators of the holocaust and genocide are Christians? You absolutely have no clue about Christianity. Yes, they came from a Christian based culture but Nazis (and American war criminals) have nothing in common with Christianity. The best countries in the world are ones based on Protestant Christianity, meaning Christianity that is the closest to the Biblical teachings. I admire Chinese culture and history (especially the technology which benefited the West) but you need the ability to admit the faults of your culture which has some serious problems.
JackOH , April 4, 2018 at 9:53 am GMT
@Anonymous

Thanks for the concern, but the risk of harm to me was near zero. Numeracy and all that.

Vojkan , April 5, 2018 at 6:13 am GMT
Though I am convinced that honesty is more rational in the long term than lying, I definitely don't believe that people with high IQ are more honest than those more modestly gifted with intellectual talent. Smart people just know better to juggle with fallacies so they are more likely to get away with it than dummies, that's all.
Logic does say that truth is lower maintenance, as it exists per se and is always consistent, and lies so they are not exposed need to be cared of constantly, as they are always intrinsically inconsistent with reality, but people are people, driven by the seven sins, of which greed and vanity are possibly the worst, with the former being more evenly distributed while the latter tends to affect the bright rather than the dim.
Logic and ethics are different categories. Equating them is a sign of, well, vanity.
TT , April 7, 2018 at 2:57 pm GMT
@utu

Only a moron equate honesty = quality using ball bearing as example. There are countries may be very honest like Bhutan, yet they don't produce high quality product.

The US top elites are very intelligent, are producing lots of quality products like Boeing plane & precision weapons for murdering everywhere, yet their politicians & bankers are known habitual liars, with British & French close behind, and Germans reluctantly.

Japanese is producing high quality products, look how frequently their politicians are caught outright lying, corrupted & nepotism, and researchers are now caught recently in their published papers using fake data, with big corporates like Toshiba, Nissan, Steel factories caught cheating systematically for long period.

Its true Germany make top notch quality, undisputed, better than Japan imo.

But look at the chart, beside Germany, who else is producing better ball bearings than China, or precision tools that run aerospace, manned space craft, rockets, 5th gen J20, satellites, nuclear plants(light water pebble), nuclear sub, FSR, a long list to go yet they are rated more honest than China.

Fyi, only 2 countries are able to produce precision steel ball bearings for tiny ball point pen tip, Germany & Japan. So China is importing billion of them for its ball point pen production annually.

Why can't China factory produce it? There was some uproar in China media over this last year. Guess what? Within a mth, some factory is churning out perfect ball bearings, but in better material – ceramic that is cheaper & longer lasting. And the producer explained, its not economical worth the effort & machining to produce those bearings as they cost only $200K p. a. to import. But for national pride, they do it.

And i highly suspect you are either from HK or Taiwan with some bad memory of old China that you simply like to smear China without taking a fairer stand that, out of 1.4B Chinese how many % is doing those crimes, vs 400M murkans more serious crimes.

The new generation Chinese should not be continuously viewed through old communist color lens & West propaganda, they are not responsible for the history but the future. Pres Xi is a good example, he is leading China to their peaceful rise now. He suffered in culture revolution, do you want to blame him for those history?

TT , April 7, 2018 at 4:15 pm GMT
This chart simply look so questionable. Why not include US, France, Oz, Canada, Bhutan, India, Brazil, Agentina, Singapore, Thailand, Myanmar, HK, Japan, Korea, HK, Taiwan, to give a wider comparison. And how the author do his samplings to derive this graph is very much questionable.

And to say brighter mind = honesty, just look at how honest are most world politicians that are generally top intellectuals of their cohort. I would say more wise = more honesty.

To use wallets returning as a test of honesty is also overly simplified. When a country is poor, these are godsend present unless they are true perfect communist.

As a country get wealthier, their people generally get better education & well off, become indoctrine with social norm of what is so called good behavior(persuaded by praise & blame). They are more inclined to return a wallet found with money that aren't so attractive to them compare to poor. But that can never be equate to genuine honest, im sure most US Pres & UK PM will return wallets.

Take UK as the most glaring example, with its brightest in parliament are consistently been outright shameless liars, such as Blairs lies for Iraq WMD war, and now May's lies of Skripal case, which all getting near unanimous support from their parliament members speak great volumes.

There is a Unz article written on how UK has been the mecca of paedophiles, global capital in grooming children for sexual exploitation, with systematic covered up over decades by their politicians because they & those powerful elites were all involved.

http://www.unz.com/jderbyshire/the-telford-child-sex-scandal-and-the-end-of-england/

Their police chief even suggested not to criminalize Britons watching/owned child porno as so high a proportion of their nation are doing will overwhelm their prisons & judicial system.

So what honesty are we talking about here, UK as over 60% honest? Even their moral value is highly questionable if you ask most UK white people.

And Malaysia getting 3rd highest honesty of near 80% is a great joke just shy from UK. Its one of well known highest crimes & corruption that the West themselves criticized much, even Spore ex-PM LKY openly condemn as violent crime infested. I never know violent criminal is honest, may be yes for the author country when compared to their politicians.

[Apr 06, 2018] It is now beyond any reasonable doubt that the claims of the Conservative government of Theresa May charging Russia with responsibility for the poisoning of the Skripals are fabrications

After the Skripal affair, is any more proof required that nothingin neoliberal MSM can be taken at face value? Looks like their motto is "if at first you don't succeed, lie, lie again."
Notable quotes:
"... So politically devastating is the exposure of Britain's lies that yesterday the Foreign Office deleted a text it sent out on March 22 declaring that the "analysis by world-leading experts at the Defence Science and Technology Laboratory at Porton Down made clear that this was a military-grade novichok nerve agent produced in Russia." ..."
"... The emergency session of the OPCW called at Russia's request received no answers to the serious questions Moscow insisted Britain had to address. Instead, the UK's representative said Russia could not take part in a joint investigation with Britain into the Skripal affair, as it was "a likely perpetrator." This was given unqualified backing by an EU spokesperson, who demanded that Russia respond to the UK's "legitimate questions" about its alleged continued production of novichoks. ..."
"... No less implicated in this criminal affair is the corporate media, especially the New York Times, which has spent the past month disseminating the raw propaganda issued by London and Washington and baying for Moscow's punishment. At no point did the Times raise a single question about the reliability of the claims of the May government. And now its response to the refutation of the lies is to ignore and bury Aitkenhead's statement. The role of the corporate media in the Skripal provocation confirms the political purpose of the hysterical campaign it has been leading against "fake news," and its insistence that social media be regulated, restricted and monitored. ..."
Apr 05, 2018 | www.wsws.org
The lies of the imperialist powers over the Skripal affair unravel by Robert Stevens

... ... ...

On Tuesday, Gary Aitkenhead, chief executive of the UK's chemical weapons facility, the Porton Down Defence Science and Technology Laboratory, told Sky News that scientists had "not verified the precise source" of the material used in the attack in Salisbury on March 4. Aitkenhead's statement came on the eve of the convening at Moscow's request of the Organisation for the Prevention of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) at The Hague, which would have exposed the UK government's case. But this resort to damage control only underscores the monstrous hoax perpetrated by the British and American governments and their European allies.

May told parliament on March 12 that Porton Down was "absolutely categorical" that the "nerve agent" used on the Skripals had come from Russia. "Based on the positive identification of this chemical agent by world-leading experts at Porton Down," she said, "the government has concluded that it is highly likely that Russia was responsible" for an "attempted murder" on British soil.

Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson told German broadcaster Deutsche Welle on March 20 that "the people from Porton Down" were "absolutely categorical" that the source of the nerve agent used against the Skripals was Russia. "I asked the guy myself," he said, "and he said 'there's no doubt.'"

So politically devastating is the exposure of Britain's lies that yesterday the Foreign Office deleted a text it sent out on March 22 declaring that the "analysis by world-leading experts at the Defence Science and Technology Laboratory at Porton Down made clear that this was a military-grade novichok nerve agent produced in Russia."

... ... ...

The emergency session of the OPCW called at Russia's request received no answers to the serious questions Moscow insisted Britain had to address. Instead, the UK's representative said Russia could not take part in a joint investigation with Britain into the Skripal affair, as it was "a likely perpetrator." This was given unqualified backing by an EU spokesperson, who demanded that Russia respond to the UK's "legitimate questions" about its alleged continued production of novichoks.

No less implicated in this criminal affair is the corporate media, especially the New York Times, which has spent the past month disseminating the raw propaganda issued by London and Washington and baying for Moscow's punishment. At no point did the Times raise a single question about the reliability of the claims of the May government. And now its response to the refutation of the lies is to ignore and bury Aitkenhead's statement. The role of the corporate media in the Skripal provocation confirms the political purpose of the hysterical campaign it has been leading against "fake news," and its insistence that social media be regulated, restricted and monitored.

... ... ...

[Apr 05, 2018] Couldn't May government come up with a better fake story?

Apr 05, 2018 | sputniknews.com

"Boris Johnson continues to convince everyone the British side supposedly sent Russia a list of questions to which it still hasn't received any answers. Everything in fact is completely the opposite. As I said, we never received any list of questions and I turn to the British side, if you have such a list of questions, please tell us, please list those questions," he said.

Regarding the UK's insistence that Moscow coordinated the attack, he asked, "Couldn't you come up with a better fake story?"

The UK is engaged in a propaganda war against Russia, Nebenzya asserted, aiming to discredit the country globally. But even propaganda wars are dangerous.

[Apr 05, 2018] Accuse the other side of what you are doing

Apr 05, 2018 | www.zerohedge.com


serotonindumptruck -> strannick Wed, 04/04/2018 - 19:25 Permalink

One of the scientists at Porton Down, Gary Aitkenhead, should probably take out additional life insurance policies.

https://www.therussophile.org/porton-down-unable-to-link-novichok-to-ru

HowdyDoody -> serotonindumptruck Wed, 04/04/2018 - 19:40 Permalink

Gary Aitkenhead is not a scientist. He is the head of Porton Down. He used to be an EO in Motorola communications division.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=prHoy-BP5W4

Frito -> serotonindumptruck Wed, 04/04/2018 - 19:42 Permalink

If he fails to keep his mouth shut I wouldn't be surprised to learn in the tabloids in the near future of his (sadly fatal) penchant for auto-erotic asphyxiation.

FBaggins -> Sy Kloine Bee Wed, 04/04/2018 - 19:09 Permalink

""Johnson also said that "none of us have forgotten" about the "barbaric" chemical weapons attack in Syria a year ago.""

Translation: "none of us have forgotten" about the "barbaric" chemical weapons attack in Syria a year ago "which was done by our Al Qaeda and ISIS proxies with the help of our special forces stationed in Syria."

Omen IV -> FBaggins Wed, 04/04/2018 - 19:51 Permalink

"to obscure the truth and confuse the public," Johnson said"

to add to your comment - this would be standard issue Clinton speak - accuse the other side of what you are doing in real time !

the disease of bullshit spreads world wide as Democracy is gamed to the nine's

Dickweed Wang -> FBaggins Wed, 04/04/2018 - 20:10 Permalink

<--- I'm sick and tired of the west's lying bullshit

<--- My government would never lie about something so serious

Killdo -> FBaggins Wed, 04/04/2018 - 20:32 Permalink

that's all they learn in boarding schools - how to lie and lie and be good psychopaths: charming, fake, easy to bribe and natural traitors, obsessed with money and status.

And above all how to develop that exhagarated catatonic accent so valued by Anglosheeple

I know many of these Public school boys - from Malborough, Harrow etc

Jack Oliver -> Sy Kloine Bee Wed, 04/04/2018 - 19:18 Permalink

If Russia has any 'novichok' -well - it should send it straight to BORIS !!

holgerdanske -> Sy Kloine Bee Wed, 04/04/2018 - 19:47 Permalink

Boris+May=political poison, unnerving agents, they must go

JRobby Wed, 04/04/2018 - 19:02 Permalink

The wallpaper and whitewash won't stick if they are in on it.

johnnycanuck Wed, 04/04/2018 - 19:02 Permalink

Goebbels wouldn't have allowed anyone to interfere with his propaganda either.

The Big Lie works seamlessly if you control the media barkers.

serotonindumptruck -> johnnycanuck Wed, 04/04/2018 - 19:08 Permalink

Is it any wonder why TPTB want total control and dominion over the internet?

johnnycanuck -> serotonindumptruck Wed, 04/04/2018 - 19:17 Permalink

Nope, and if you look closely, TPTB are mostly Corporations or support mechanisms now.

Swamp Monsters.

Kefeer -> johnnycanuck Wed, 04/04/2018 - 19:46 Permalink

Look no further than you local electric and gas suppliers who are likely publicly traded with a monopoly on the most traded commodities in the world. Why does a human necessity have a monopoly - follow the money.

RagnarRedux -> johnnycanuck Wed, 04/04/2018 - 19:18 Permalink

The NS's were describing "The Big Lie" technique as the Modus Operandi of Jewry, not advocating using it themselves!

http://www.ihr.org/jhr/v02/v02p-35_Brandon.html

https://www.historiography-project.com/misc/biglie.php

manofthenorth Wed, 04/04/2018 - 19:02 Permalink

"All your evidence belongs to us"

serotonindumptruck Wed, 04/04/2018 - 19:06 Permalink

Boris Johnson is a colossal joke.

He declares Russia guilty as charged with absolutely no evidence, no legitimate investigation, and no due process of law.

dirty fingernails -> serotonindumptruck Wed, 04/04/2018 - 19:17 Permalink

This means there will be a bigger false flag soon. Gotta get eyes off of this mess

Brazen Heist -> dirty fingernails Wed, 04/04/2018 - 19:20 Permalink

Lol....that's what I think, from my experience with dealing with retarded psychopaths. They just don't back down until you directly address them and call them out on their bullshit, or just plain fucking slam them against the wall.

So err...is it going to be an "accidental" nuclear launch or dirty bomb, or I don't know.....a Russian ISIS attack? The possibilities are endless with these slimey limey cunts. They're barely out of the European Union, yet are already faltering like a mule loaded with lead.

dirty fingernails -> Brazen Heist Wed, 04/04/2018 - 19:34 Permalink

Agreed, and some just go nuts when called out. It's worse than just the Brits. Trump is clearly somewhat on board, and Macron seems to want a distraction, too.

Brazen Heist -> dirty fingernails Wed, 04/04/2018 - 19:45 Permalink

Trump is in love with himself, Macron is in love with a granny, and Boris Johnson belongs to the fucking zoo with the gorillas.

What a world we live in, when the voices of reason are coming from Russia, China and Iran, and the irrational tantrum turd throwing is coming from the West.

Delusions of grandeur comes to mind.

Jack Oliver -> dirty fingernails Wed, 04/04/2018 - 19:23 Permalink

Yes - Something BIG before the World Cup in June !!

I'm waiting for the FUCKING riots when Britain - Brazil - France - Germany etc - tell their people that they won't be going to the World Cup !

Viva 'La Revolution' !

I doubt they have factored in the 'People Power' response !

These nations live and breath soccer !

johnnycanuck -> serotonindumptruck Wed, 04/04/2018 - 19:26 Permalink

May I remind you of 59 cruise missiles, and the Chocolate Cake saga.

And of course Ivanka, the latest replacement for the daughter of the Ambassador from Kuwait. Of Hill and Knowlton fame.

" no evidence, no legitimate investigation, and no due process of law . "

serotonindumptruck -> johnnycanuck Wed, 04/04/2018 - 19:42 Permalink

I concur.

I might also politely remind you and others of Russia's ability to disable the US Aegis missile system, including the Raytheon Tomahawk missile using a highly advanced electronic warfare suite known as Khibiny.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8s4sKAMgYsU

GreatUncle -> serotonindumptruck Wed, 04/04/2018 - 19:38 Permalink

You do not need due process to hang him now neither :-) Ain't that cute when the process of law finally breaks down. Happens when you support banksters operating a ponzi scheme to rob people...

man of Wool -> serotonindumptruck Wed, 04/04/2018 - 20:25 Permalink

Stupid cunt is a better description. He is supposed to be the number 1 diplomat but he is a classic attention seeking snowflake who wants to be PM.

He blamed Russia immediately. Then tells everyone not to be Russiaphobic and then the stupid cunt compares attending the WC the same as Hitler's 1936 Olympics.

Guy is out of his depth and making Britain look stupid.

francis scott -> man of Wool Wed, 04/04/2018 - 20:36 Permalink

Boris was just reading his lines in the script.

No one is making Britain look stupid. Britain

does that all by itself.

Obamanism666 Wed, 04/04/2018 - 19:06 Permalink

Portland Down say they do not know where the nerve agent was manufactured (Portland down would have the records of OPCW to check). Maybe Russia would have the data relating the nerve agent to a NATO stockpile. Note: If the nerve agent was so deadly how come the person delivering it; is not ill?

Escapedgoat -> Obamanism666 Wed, 04/04/2018 - 19:38 Permalink

It is PORTON DOWN not "Portland" Down

crazzziecanuck -> Obamanism666 Wed, 04/04/2018 - 19:38 Permalink

Given this talk about "military-grade", it sounds more like something an American MIC manufacturer would make. Overpriced and ineffective when used.

Three people affected. Hours after contact. Yet all three survived, in spite of the lack of antidote, as the BBC has reported. Doesn't sound pretty "military-grade" to me. And if it is "military grade", should we even be shitting our pants at the constant fearmongering over WMDs? If this is what military grade is capable of for terrorism, we're clearly spending way to much money for this particular threat, now aren't we?

HowdyDoody -> crazzziecanuck Wed, 04/04/2018 - 19:47 Permalink

I don't buy the 'no antidote' business. Nerve agents work by blocking receptors in the nervous system. Atropine breaks this block restoring normal nervous system action. The cop who was affected was talking within days yet the Skirpals were unconscious for weeks, until Julia Skirpal made a 'miraculous' recovery. Did the cop get atropine?

FlKeysFisherman Wed, 04/04/2018 - 19:34 Permalink

This propaganda campaign is embarrassing. These goofy bastards can't even pull this off without looking completely incompetent.

It's no wonder the Tribe has complete control of these losers.

[Apr 04, 2018] Russia Denied Request To Join OPCW Investigation Into Skripal Poisoning

Looks like projection but in reality this is a false flag. Projection implies an unawareness of one's own self. They know they did it.
The UK government has effectively repudiated the OPCW treaty by refusing to follow the reporting and investigation procedures set out in the treaty.
Apr 04, 2018 | www.zerohedge.com

Fifteen countries voted against Russia's bid, while six voted for it and 17 abstained.

"Unfortunately, we haven't been able to have two-thirds of the votes in support of that decision. A qualified majority was needed," Russian ambassador Alexander Shulgin told reporters, adding " Russia as well as other states that are members of the Executive Committee have been pushed aside from this investigation ."

UK's Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson brushed aside Russia's request, calling it a "ludicrous proposal" designed to "undermine" the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) investigation.

"Russia has had one goal in mind since the attempted murders on UK soil through the use of a military-grade chemical weapon - to obscure the truth and confuse the public," Johnson said. " The international community has yet again seen through these tactics and robustly defeated Russia's attempts today to derail the proper international process ." Johnson also said that "none of us have forgotten" about the "barbaric" chemical weapons attack in Syria a year ago.

"After the OPCW-UN investigation found that the Syrian regime was responsible, Russia blocked that body from doing any more work," he said.

Russia wants to discuss a letter sent by UK Prime Minister Theresa May to the UN Security Council which says it's "highly likely" that Moscow was behind last month's nerve agent attack.

Meanwhile , as we reported yesterday , the chief scientist from the UK's Porton Down military laboratory facility, Gary Aitkenhead, told Sky News that they had been unable to prove that the novichok nerve agent used to poison Sergei and Yulia Skripal came from Russia.

"We were able to identify it as novichok, to identify that it was military-grade nerve agent," Aitkenhead said. " We have not identified the precise source, but we have provided the scientific info to government who have then used a number of other sources to piece together the conclusions you have come to. "

**PAGING COLIN POWELL. IS THERE A MR. POWELL IN THE BUILDING?**

The Porton Down chief scientist said that establishing the Novichok's origin required "other inputs," some of which are intelligence based and which only the government has access to.

Aitkenhead added: " It is our job to provide the scientific evidence of what this particular nerve agent is, we identified that it is from this particular family and that it is a military grade, but it is not our job to say where it was manufactured ."

So whose job is it to determine where the Novichok was manufactured?

That said, it was also noted that the nerve agent involved required "extremely sophisticated methods to create, something only in the capabilities of a state actor," and that there is no known antidote to Novichok - nor was any administered to either of the Skripals.

Aitkenhead would not say whether the Porton Down facility had manufactured or maintained stocks of Novichok - long rumored to be the case.

" There is no way anything like that could have come from us or left the four walls of our facility ," said the chief.

Boris Johnson has come under fire since the Porton Down chief's statement, as Johnson lied, saying in an interview two weeks ago that Porton Down officials told him there was "no doubt" that the nerge agent came from Russia .

The Foreign Office told Sky News that Johnson "misspoke," which is apparently UK officialspeak for "he totally lied, but nobody will hold him accountable for it."

Perhaps Johnson "misspoke" in his rush to locate a hairbrush?


Sy Kloine Bee Wed, 04/04/2018 - 19:02 Permalink

Nobody believes them anymore, and they know it. They just lie because they have to tell you something.

Got The Wrong No -> Sy Kloine Bee Wed, 04/04/2018 - 19:07 Permalink

The British version of the Mueller investigation

Lost in translation -> Got The Wrong No Wed, 04/04/2018 - 19:09 Permalink

Russia should wash its hands of OPCW - quit and never return.

Slack Jack -> Pol Pot Wed, 04/04/2018 - 20:31 Permalink

The evil people, Theresa May, Stoltenberg, Trump and the rest, are damming Russia with obvious lies.

The Novichok nerve agents probably don't even exist.

HERE IS THE PROOF:

The Novichok nerve agents are supposedly much more toxic than the nerve gases VX or Sarin.

Mirzayanov's book, published in 2008, contains the formulas he alleges can be used to create Novichoks. In 1995, he explained that "the chemical components or precursors" of Novichok are "ordinary organophosphates that can be made at commercial chemical companies that manufacture such products as fertilizers and pesticides."

https://www.amazon.com/State-Secrets-Insiders-Chronicle-Chemical/dp/143

Basically, Mirzayanov claims that it is relatively easy to make the Novichok nerve agents.

So, some enterprising Arabs could buy a few chemists to make a few tons of it and then spray it all over the little Satan.

Do you really think that the Jews who run the United States would allow the publication of information that could lead to thousands of deaths in Israel?

Do you really think they would protect the publisher of such information by giving him residence in the United States?

Remember, Mirzayanov was given residence in the United States after he was kicked out of Russia.

There are also a number of "people who should know" that have stated that there is zero solid evidence for the existence of the Novichok nerve agents. For example: Robin Black in Development, Historical Use and Properties of Chemical Warfare Agents (2016):

"In recent years, there has been much speculation that a fourth generation of nerve agents, 'Novichoks' (newcomer), was developed in Russia, beginning in the 1970s as part of the 'Foliant' programme, with the aim of finding agents that would compromise defensive countermeasures. Information on these compounds has been sparse in the public domain, mostly originating from a dissident Russian military chemist, Vil Mirzayanov. No independent confirmation of the structures or the properties of such compounds has been published."

https://www.craigmurray.org.uk/archives/2018/03/the-novichok-story-is-i

And, Alexander Shulgin, Russia's representative to the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (2018):

"There has never been a 'Novichok' research project conducted in Russia,... But in the West, some countries carried out such research, which they called 'Novichok,' for some reason."

CONCLUSION: The Novichok nerve agents don't even exist.

philipat -> EuroPox Wed, 04/04/2018 - 19:45 Permalink

The use of the "projection" technique (essentially accusing your opponents of doing the very things you yourself are doing) in official circles has become widespread. It's biggest proponent is, of course, Shitlery who, as an example, recently accused Trump of using his position to enrich himself and his family (Um....?). Now BoJo has the chutzpah to accuse Russia of obfuscation and lies. Same technique. Specifically:

" Russia has had one goal in mind since the attempted murders on UK soil through the use of a military-grade chemical weapon - to obscure the truth and confuse the public," Johnson said. " The international community has yet again seen through these tactics and robustly defeated Russia's attempts today to derail the proper international process ."

And, of course, psychopaths actually believe their projections which allows them to speak with a straight face. And the MSM, naturally, just blindly "reports" what they say. The internet is the only source of real information and the true investigative journalism of any integrity. Which is, of course, why they are trying so hard to censor and close the sources of truth.

Killdo -> philipat Wed, 04/04/2018 - 20:22 Permalink

you can see here their modus operandi - one of the first NSA leaks by Snowden/Greenwald. There is a slide there called the Gambits For Deception - all the tricks are there - how to never admit when caught lying, how to cover the small move by the big one - basically all the BS this fat ugly clown is using are there:

https://theintercept.com/2014/02/24/jtrig-manipulation/

scroll down and look for slides from 5 Eye meetings

JohnFrodo -> philipat Wed, 04/04/2018 - 20:24 Permalink

projection is everything. America banned the Huwawie Chinese cell phone because they thought it was a threat. What are all those Apples in China? Not even to speak about domestic use.

[Mar 27, 2018] You will gain a better understanding of Vladimir Putin if you study his career as a sportsman, 3rd degree blackbelt Judoka than by sifting through his career as an ex-spy.

Mar 27, 2018 | www.unz.com

ThreeCranes , March 27, 2018 at 1:23 pm GMT

You will gain a better understanding of Vladimir Putin if you study his career as a sportsman, 3rd degree blackbelt Judoka than by sifting through his career as an ex-spy.

First of all, Judo is a sport. It's not a "martial art". It's not meant to maim or injure–though of course, people do get injured because they get thrown. Every particular technique that could inevitably result in injury has been culled from the sport. You don't "practice" Judo, you "play" it–literally, that's what they say when talking about participation.

Practice sessions are democratic. Everyone practices against everyone else. Of course, this results in mismatches as rank beginners will at some point be paired up with advanced players. But this mismatch doesn't result in humiliation because the advanced take special pains to play cleanly, pull their throws i.e. execute them perfectly so the person thrown can land without injury to themselves and it also is an opportunity for every good Judoka to teach the novices.

There are some people who come to Judo who don't fit in. They standout because they can be seen really playing rough with those who are lower in rank than them. But this doesn't go unnoticed. As people cycle through opponents during the practice session, the bully will eventually be paired up with someone who is better than they are. And they will be taught a lesson. Either they learn and conform to the rules or they never show up again. Judo weeds out opportunistic bullies.

Now I hope the above helps people better understand Putin. To sum up: he is competitive but will try to win fairly, within the prescribed rules. He won't tolerate bullying by the stronger over the weaker, will, in fact, come to the aid of the weaker. Has a strong sense of tradition, of belonging to a school of thought and action that is greater than himself and that is worth preserving for its own sake, believes and more importantly, knows through experience, that belonging to such a school improves individual character. He is competent. I've seen film of him in practice and his technique is quite good. His third degree black belt was honestly earned, it wasn't an honorary award.

From the above it can be seen why he would have little respect for the current crop of weak, cowardly, politicians who rule America, lacking as they are in discipline, integrity and dedication to a larger, noble cause. He would, in fact, find it hard not to hold them in contempt but, keeping his eyes on the long-term goals of what's good for his country, masters his emotions when dealing with them face to face.

[Mar 27, 2018] Integrity Has Vanished From The West by Paul Craig Roberts,

Mar 27, 2018 | www.zerohedge.com

Authored Among Western political leaders there is not an ounce of integrity or morality . The Western print and TV media is dishonest and corrupt beyond repair. Yet the Russian government persists in its fantasy of "working with Russia's Western partners." The only way Russia can work with crooks is to become a crook. Is that what the Russian government wants?

Finian Cunningham notes the absurdity in the political and media uproar over Trump (belatedly) telephoning Putin to congratulate him on his reelection with 77 percent of the vote, a show of public approval that no Western political leader could possibly attain. The crazed US senator from Arizona called the person with the largest majority vote of our time "a dictator." Yet a real blood-soaked dictator from Saudi Arabia is feted at the White House and fawned over by the president of the United States.

The Western politicians and presstitutes are morally outraged over an alleged poisoning, unsupported by any evidence, of a former spy of no consequence on orders by the president of Russia himself. These kind of insane insults thrown at the leader of the world's most powerful military nation -- and Russia is a nation, unlike the mongrel Western countries -- raise the chances of nuclear Armageddon beyond the risks during the 20th century's Cold War. The insane fools making these unsupported accusations show total disregard for all life on earth. Yet they regard themselves as the salt of the earth and as "exceptional, indispensable" people.

Think about the alleged poisoning of Skirpal by Russia. What can this be other than an orchestrated effort to demonize the president of Russia? How can the West be so outraged over the death of a former double-agent, that is, a deceptive person, and completely indifferent to the millions of peoples destroyed by the West in the 21st century alone. Where is the outrage among Western peoples over the massive deaths for which the West, acting through its Saudi agent, is responsible in Yemen? Where is the Western outrage among Western peoples over the deaths in Syria? The deaths in Libya, in Somalia, Pakistan, Ukraine, Afghanistan? Where is the outrage in the West over the constant Western interference in the internal affairs of other countries? How many times has Washington overthrown a democratically-elected government in Honduras and reinstalled a Washington puppet?

The corruption in the West extends beyond politicians, presstitutes, and an insouciant public to experts. When the ridiculous Condi Rice, national security adviser to president George W. Bush, spoke of Saddam Hussein's non-existent weapons of mass destruction sending up a nuclear cloud over an American city, experts did not laugh her out of court. The chance of any such event was precisely zero and every expert knew it, but the corrupt experts held their tongues. If they spoke the truth, they knew that they would not get on TV, would not get a government grant, would be out of the running for a government appointment. So they accepted the absurd lie designed to justify an American invasion that destroyed a country.

This is the West. There is nothing but lies and indifference to the deaths of others. The only outrage is orchestrated and directed against a target: the Taliban, Saddam Hussein, Gaddafi, Iran, Assad, Russia and Putin, and against reformist leaders in Latin America. The targets for Western outrage are always those who act independently of Washington or who are no longer useful to Washington's purposes.

The quality of people in Western governments has collapsed to the very bottom of the barrel. The British actually have a person, Boris Johnson, as Foreign Secretary, who is so low-down that a former British ambassador has no compunction in calling him a categorical liar. The British lab Porton Down, contrary to Johnson's claim, has not identified the agent associated with the attack on Skirpal as a Russian novichok agent. Note also that if the British lab is able to identify a novichok agent, it also has the capability of producing it, a capability that many countries have as the formulas were published years ago in a book.

That the novichok poisoning of Skirpal is an orchestration is obvious. The minute the event occurred the story was ready. With no evidence in hand, the British government and presstitute media were screaming "the Russians did it." Not content with that, Boris Johnson screamed "Putin did it." In order to institutionalize fear and hatred of Russia into British consciousness, British school children are being taught that Putin is like Hitler.

Orchestrations this blatant demonstrate that Western governments have no respect for the intelligence of their peoples. That Western governments get away with these fantastic lies indicates that the governments are immune to accountability. Even if accountability were possible, there is no sign that Western peoples are capable of holding their governments accountable. As Washington drives the world to nuclear war, where are the protests? The only protest is brainwashed school children protesting the National Rifle Association and the Second Amendment.

Western democracy is a hoax. Consider Catalonia. The people voted for independence and were denounced for doing so by European politicians. The Spanish government invaded Catalonia alleging that the popular referendum, in which people expressed their opinion about their own future, was illegal. Catalonian leaders are in prison awaiting trial, except for Carles Puigdemont who escaped to Belgium. Now Germany has captured him on his return to Belgium from Finland where he lectured at the University of Hesinki and is holding him in jail for a Spanish government that bears more resemblance to Francisco Franco than to democracy. The European Union itself is a conspiracy against democracy.

The success of Western propaganda in creating non-existent virtues for itself is the greatest public relations success in history. Tags Politics

[Mar 26, 2018] US expulsion of Russian diplomats is declaration of war by George Galloway

Notable quotes:
"... "vassal states," ..."
"... made a fairly desultory expulsion of a diplomat or two or three, but the United States' act is a kind of declaration of war, all the more surprising given that according to the deep state, and the liberal confluence in the United States, President Trump is Russia's man ..."
"... "precursor to a very sharp deterioration of relations" ..."
"... deep state opponents" ..."
"... "If it were me who was making the decision, I certainly wouldn't proceed on the assumption that being soft will in any way satiate the ravenous beasts that are baying for Russia's blood at this point in time," ..."
"... "As far as I can see there is no investigation, ..."
"... "The verdict was declared before the investigation began and I think there's no investigation because the results of any serious scientific analytical investigation would show that the allegations against Russia are baseless." ..."
"... "I don't believe that Russia is responsible for this act. And the good news is that most of the British public tend to agree," ..."
Mar 26, 2018 | www.rt.com

British politician, broadcaster, and writer George Galloway has slammed Donald Trump's decision to expel 60 Russian diplomats and close the Russian consulate in Seattle. Galloway regards it as tantamount to a "declaration of war." Galloway contrasted the US' actions with those of EU member states. Those EU countries who rushed to follow the lead of Britain and the US in response to the poisoning of former spy Sergei Skripal are simply acting as "vassal states," doing what they are told.

European states have " made a fairly desultory expulsion of a diplomat or two or three, but the United States' act is a kind of declaration of war, all the more surprising given that according to the deep state, and the liberal confluence in the United States, President Trump is Russia's man ," Galloway told RT.

The former British MP said the decision to leave just 40 Russian diplomats to do their jobs in the US was either a "precursor to a very sharp deterioration of relations" -- or alternatively a "charade " designed to make Trump's " deep state opponents" lay off him over not being tough enough on Russia.

Galloway said Russia should not assume that being soft in response to Trump's action will have any desirable effect.

"If it were me who was making the decision, I certainly wouldn't proceed on the assumption that being soft will in any way satiate the ravenous beasts that are baying for Russia's blood at this point in time," he said.

According to Galloway, the UK has not conducted a serious and unbiased investigation into the poisoning of Skripal and his daughter.

"As far as I can see there is no investigation, " he said. "The verdict was declared before the investigation began and I think there's no investigation because the results of any serious scientific analytical investigation would show that the allegations against Russia are baseless."

Galloway said there are still many questions which have been left unanswered in the Skripal case.

"I don't believe that Russia is responsible for this act. And the good news is that most of the British public tend to agree," he said.

[Mar 23, 2018] http://www.larouchepub.com/other/2018/4512_poisoning_brit_desperate.html

Notable quotes:
"... [ Print version of this article ] ..."
"... A short statement of the reasons why the British are now staging the Skripal provocation can be found in a March 14 London Daily Telegraph call to arms by Allister Heath, who rants: "We need a new world order to take on totalitarian capitalists in Russia and China. Such an alliance would dramatically shift the global balance of power, and allow the liberal democracies finally to fight back. It would endow the world with the sorts of robust institutions that are required to contain Russia and China. Britain needs a new role in the world; building such a network would be our perfect mission." Across the pond, as they say, a similar foundational statement was made by 68 former Obama Administration officials who have formed a group called National Security Action, aimed at securing Trump's impeachment and attacking Russia and China. ..."
"... China's "Belt and Road Initiative" now encompasses more than 140 nations in the largest infrastructure-building project ever undertaken in human history. This project is a true economic engine for the future. At the same time, the neo-liberal economies of the trans-Atlantic region continue to see their productive potentials sucked dry by the massive piles of debt they have created since the 2008 financial collapse. ..."
"... Just look at the events of February and March from this standpoint. It is no accident that Christopher Steele turns up, smack dab in the middle of the Skripal poisoning hoax. ..."
"... None of the true facts about the actual motive for, and sponsors of, the DOJ applications involving Carter Page were revealed to the FISA Court in the filings made by former Deputy Attorney General Sally Yates, former FBI Director James Comey, or current Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein. ..."
"... Since Steele has been discredited in the United States, a huge fawning publicity campaign has been undertaken on his behalf. The campaign involves journalists who have collaborated directly with Steele in his smear job against Trump. Books by Luke Harding and Michael Isikoff seek to rebuild Steele's reputation. ..."
"... A fawning piece by Jane Mayer in the New Yorker, as implausible as it is long, has been foisted on the public for the same reason. ..."
"... Steele described his business to Luke Harding as primarily providing research and reports to competing and feuding Russian oligarchs, many of whom use London as a base of operations. This is obviously a perfect cover for intelligence operations. It is also a very violent theater of operations. The oligarchs intersect both Western intelligence operations and Russian organized crime. They engage in deadly gang warfare. ..."
"... Steele and his partners are mentored by Sir Richard Dearlove, former head of MI6 and a critical player in the infamous "sexing up" and fabrication of the claim that Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction, ..."
"... Steele had been tasked to claim that Russia was interfering in Western elections during the entire post-Ukraine coup time-frame, when this black propaganda line began to be circulated widely. ..."
"... The background to Porton Down's reluctance, is of course former Prime Minister Blair's phony dossier on Iraqi WMD, which Lyndon LaRouche fought, alongside the late British arms expert David Kelly, who exposed the "dodgy dossier," at the time. ..."
"... Thus, after being disclosed by a dissident Russian chemist living in the United States, novichoks have been widely copied by other countries, according to the press accounts. ..."
"... The insane McCarthyite reactions to Corbyn's simple statements of fact show that he hit the nail on the head. If you want to find Skripal's poisoners, then, like Edgar Allen Poe, you must take in the whole picture first. The field of play involves the British intelligence services and the anti-Putin Russian oligarchs, each of which services the other, acting on behalf of British strategic objectives. It is no accident that the coup against Donald Trump and the latest British intelligence fraud, putting the entire world in peril, absolutely intersect one another. ..."
Mar 23, 2018 | www.larouchepub.com

Skripal Poisoning a Desperate British Attempt To Resurrect Their American Coup

by Barbara Boyd

[ Print version of this article ]

March 18 -- In this report, we will explore the strategic significance of major events in the world starting in February 2018. Our goal is to precisely situate British Prime Minister Theresa May's March 12-14 mad effort to manufacture a new "weapons of mass destruction" hoax based on the alleged Skripal poisoning, using the same people (the MI6 intelligence grouping around Sir Richard Dearlove) and script (an intelligence fraud concerning weapons of mass destruction) which were used to draw the United States into the disastrous Iraq War.

The Skripal poisoning fraud also directly involves British agent Christopher Steele, the central figure in the ongoing coup against Donald Trump. This time the British information warfare operation is aimed at directly provoking Russia, while maintaining the targeting of the U.S. population and President Trump.

As the fevered, war-like media coverage and hysteria surrounding the case make clear, a certain section of the British elite seems prepared to risk everything on behalf of its dying imperial system. Despite the hype, economic warfare and sanctions appear to be the British weapons of choice -- Vladimir Putin, as we shall see, recently called the West's nuclear bluff. With the British "Russiagate" coup against Donald Trump fizzling, exposing British agent Christopher Steele and a slew of his American friends to criminal prosecution, a new tool was desperately needed to back the President of the United States into the British geopolitical corner shared by most of the American establishment. The tool they are using to do this is an intelligence hoax, a tried-and-true British product.

According to the British spy tale, a former Russian military intelligence colonel, Sergei Skripal, who spied for Great Britain in Russia from the early 1990s until 2004, was poisoned, along with his daughter, on March 4 in Salisbury, England, using a nerve agent "of a type developed by Russia." In 2010, Skripal had been exchanged in a spy swap between the United States and Russia. He had served six years in a Russian prison for spying for Britain. He had been living in the open in Britain for the last eight years. Skripal's MI6 recruiter and handler, Pablo Miller, listed himself as a consultant to Orbis Business Intelligence, Christopher Steele's British company, on his LinkedIn profile. When the London Daily Telegraph called attention to the Orbis reference, it was removed from the profile. Steele, who worked on the Trump dossier through his company Orbis, has denied that Miller worked directly on that dossier.

Theresa May and her foreign minister, Boris Johnson, insist there is only one person who could be responsible for the poisoning -- described as an act of war -- and that person is Vladimir Putin. No evidence has been offered to support this claim. No plausible motive has been provided as to why Putin would order such a provocative murder now, ahead of the World Cup, when the Russiagate coup in the United States has lost all momentum. Rather than following the protocols of the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW), which require that evidence of the alleged agent be presented to Russia, the eccentric and unpopular May instead delivered an ultimatum to Russia, and whipped up war fever throughout the UK. She now seeks to pull Donald Trump and NATO into ever more aggressive moves against Russia.

Thus, as with Christopher Steele's dirty dossier against Donald Trump, the British claims against Putin are an evidence-free exercise of raw power. The Anglo-American establishment instructs us: "trust this, ignore the stinky factless content presented in this dossier -- just note that it is backed by very important intelligence agencies which could cook your goose if you object."

A short statement of the reasons why the British are now staging the Skripal provocation can be found in a March 14 London Daily Telegraph call to arms by Allister Heath, who rants: "We need a new world order to take on totalitarian capitalists in Russia and China. Such an alliance would dramatically shift the global balance of power, and allow the liberal democracies finally to fight back. It would endow the world with the sorts of robust institutions that are required to contain Russia and China. Britain needs a new role in the world; building such a network would be our perfect mission." Across the pond, as they say, a similar foundational statement was made by 68 former Obama Administration officials who have formed a group called National Security Action, aimed at securing Trump's impeachment and attacking Russia and China.

Russia and China have embarked on a massive infrastructure building project in Eurasia, the center of all British geopolitical fantasies since the time of Halford Mackinder. China's "Belt and Road Initiative" now encompasses more than 140 nations in the largest infrastructure-building project ever undertaken in human history. This project is a true economic engine for the future. At the same time, the neo-liberal economies of the trans-Atlantic region continue to see their productive potentials sucked dry by the massive piles of debt they have created since the 2008 financial collapse. This debt is now on a hair trigger for implosion. It is estimated by banking insiders that the City of London is sitting on a derivatives powderkeg of $700 trillion, with over-the-counter derivatives accounting for another $570 trillion. The City of London will bear the major impact of the coming derivatives collapse.

In this strategic geometry, President Trump's support for peaceful collaboration with Russia during the campaign, and his personal friendship with China's President Xi Jinping, have marked him for the relentless coup-drive waged by the British and their U.S. friends.

On top of that, President Putin delivered a mammoth strategic shock on March 1, showing new Russian weapons systems based on new physical principles, which render present U.S. ABM systems and much of current U.S. war-fighting doctrine obsolete, together with the vaunted first strike capacity with which NATO has surrounded Russia. Not only is the West sitting on a new financial collapse, its vaunted military superiority has just been flanked.

It is very clear that a strategic choice now confronts the human race. In 1984, Lyndon LaRouche wrote a very profound document, " Draft Memorandum of Agreement Between the U.S. and the U.S.S.R. " In it, he developed the concrete basis for peace between the two superpowers at the moment when the United States had adopted the LaRouche/Reagan doctrine of strategic defense. Both Reagan and LaRouche had proposed that the Russians and the United States cooperate in building and developing strategic defense against offensive nuclear weapons, based on new physical principles, thereby eliminating the threat of nuclear annihilation.

According to the LaRouche Doctrine, "The political foundation for durable peace must be: a) the unconditional sovereignty of each and all nation states, and b) cooperation among sovereign states to the effect of promoting unlimited opportunities to participate in the benefits of technological progress, to the mutual benefit of each and all."

Both China, in President Xi's October Address to the Party Congress, and Russia, in Putin's March 1 address to the Federal Assembly, have set a course to produce technological progress capable of being shared in by all. They both outline major infrastructure projects and dedicating massive funding to exploring the frontiers of science, technology, and space exploration. Donald Trump, in both his campaign and his presidency, has embraced similar views. The British and their American friends, however, are devotees of a completely different and failing economic system, a system soundly rejected in Brexit, in the election of Donald Trump, and most recently in the Italian elections.

Just look at the events of February and March from this standpoint. It is no accident that Christopher Steele turns up, smack dab in the middle of the Skripal poisoning hoax.

Exposure of British as U.S. Election Meddlers Weakens Anti-Trump Coup

On Feb. 2, the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence released a memo demonstrating that the Obama Justice Department and FBI committed an outright fraud on the FISA court in obtaining surveillance warrants on Carter Page, a volunteer for Donald Trump's 2016 presidential campaign. The bogus warrant applications relied heavily on the dirty British dossier authored by MI6's "former" Russian intelligence chief, Christopher Steele, who had been paid by Hillary Clinton's campaign and the Democratic National Committee to paint Donald Trump as a Manchurian candidate -- as a pawn of Russian President Vladimir Putin.

According to the House Intelligence memo and other aspects of its investigation, Steele confided to Bruce Ohr, a high official in the DOJ, that he, Steele, hated Trump with a passion and would do "anything" to prevent Trump's election. Steele was using the fact of an FBI investigation of his allegations as part of a "full spectrum" British information warfare campaign conducted against candidate Trump with the full complicity of Obama's intelligence chiefs. (See Peter Van Buren, " Christopher Steele: The Real Foreign Influence in the 2016 U.S. Election? " The American Conservative, February 15, 2018.) None of the true facts about the actual motive for, and sponsors of, the DOJ applications involving Carter Page were revealed to the FISA Court in the filings made by former Deputy Attorney General Sally Yates, former FBI Director James Comey, or current Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein.

The House Intelligence Committee memo was quickly followed by a declassified letter on Feb. 5, in which Senators Chuck Grassley and Lindsay Graham referred Christopher Steele to the Department of Justice (DOJ) for criminal prosecution, based on false statements he made to the FBI about his contacts with the news media. No doubt the criminal referral sent chills down the spines not only of Christopher Steele and his British colleagues, but also of those former Obama officials conspiring against Trump.

In the same week, House Intelligence Chairman Devin Nunes announced that he would be conducting investigations into the role of the Obama State Department and intelligence chiefs in the circulation and use of Christopher Steele's dirty dossier. These investigations have been widely reported to focus on John Brennan and James Clapper -- Brennan for widely promoting the dirty British work product, and Clapper for leaks associated with BuzzFeed's publication and legitimization of the dirty British work product. Remind yourself every time you hear media explosions against Trump by either Clapper (congressional perjurer and proponent of the theory that the Russians are genetically predisposed to screw the United States) or Brennan (gopher for George Tenet's perpetual war and torture regime and Grand Inquisitor for Barack Obama's serial
assassinations by baseball card). They are next in the barrel, so to speak.

The January 11, 2017 BuzzFeed publication of the Steele dossier was meant to permanently poison Trump's incoming administration, and is the subject of libel suits both in Florida and London. In the London case, the British are ready to invoke the Official Secrets Act to protect Christopher Steele. In the Florida case, Steele has been ordered to sit for deposition despite numerous delays and stalling tactics.

The Congressional investigation of the State Department is focused on John Kerry, Kerry's aide Jonathan Winer, Victoria Nuland, and Clinton operative Cody Shearer. Nuland utilized Christopher Steele as a primary intelligence source while running the U.S. regime change operations in Ukraine in alliance with neo-Nazis. She greenlighted Steele's initial meetings with the FBI about Donald Trump. Winer deployed himself to vouch for Steele to various news publications collaborating with British agent Steele and his U.S. employer, Fusion GPS, in Steele's media warfare operations against Trump.

Horowitz's report on the Clinton investigations -- which have already unearthed the texts between former Russiagate lead case agent Peter Strzok and his mistress, FBI lawyer Lisa Page, proclaiming their hatred of Donald Trump and the need for an "insurance policy" against his election -- is expected to be released very soon. According to the House Intelligence Committee, the Strzok/Page texts also reveal that Strzok was a close friend of U.S. District Court Judge Rudolph Contreras. Contreras sits on the FISA court, took Michael Flynn's guilty plea, and then promptly recused himself from Michael Flynn's case for reasons which remain undisclosed.

Despite its exoneration of the President and thorough discrediting of the British Steele operation, the House Intelligence Committee dangerously accepts the myth that the Russians hacked the Democratic National Committee, the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, and the emails of Clinton Campaign Chairman John Podesta, and then provided the hacked information to WikiLeaks for publication. Its final report states, however, that Putin's intervention was not in support of Donald Trump, as previously claimed by Obama's intelligence chiefs. The Senators seeking a new Special Counsel also salute this dangerous fraud.

As we have previously reported, the myth that Putin hacked the Democrats and provided the hacked emails to WikiLeaks, has been substantively refuted by the investigations of the Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity (VIPS). In summary, the evidence points to a leak rather than a hack in the case of the DNC. Further, the NSA would have the evidence of any such hack or hacks, according to former NSA technical director Bill Binney, and would have provided it, even if in a classified setting. It is clear that the NSA has no such evidence. It is also clear that the United States and the British have cyber warfare capabilities fully capable of creating "false flag" cyber war incidents.

North Korea Talks Planned, While Russia and China Continue to Create the Conditions for a New Human Renaissance

In addition to the fizzling of the coup, the Western elites suffered through February and March for additional reasons. To the shock of the entire, smug Davos crowd, Donald Trump, working with Russia, China, and South Korea, appears to have gotten Kim Jong-un to the negotiating table concerning denuclearization of the Korean peninsula. Substantive talks have been scheduled for May. The breakthrough was announced by President Trump and South Korea on March 8.

On March 1, President Putin gave his historic two-hour address to the Russian Federal Assembly and the Russian people. Like President Xi's address to the Chinese Party Congress in October 2017, Putin focused on the goal of deeply reducing poverty in Russian society. Xi vowed in October to eliminate poverty from Chinese society altogether by 2020. In addition, Putin emphasized that Russia would undertake a huge city-building project across its vast rural frontiers and dramatically expand its modern infrastructure, including Russia's digital infrastructure. He put major emphasis on directing funds to basic scientific and technological progress. He emphasized that harnessing and stimulating the creative powers of individual human beings is the true driver of all economic progress.

China's Belt and Road Initiative also continued to advance. Great infrastructure projects are popping up throughout the world, including most specifically in Africa, which had been consigned to be a permanent, primitive looting-ground for Western interests. Among the recent breakthroughs is the great project to refill Lake Chad, a project known as "Transaqua," involving the Italian engineering firm Bonifica, the Chinese engineering and construction firm PowerChina, and the Lake Chad Basin Commission, which represents the African countries directly benefiting from the project. But the biggest strategic news of the last six weeks was contained in the last part of President Putin's speech. He showed various weapons, developed by Russian scientists in the wake of the U.S. abrogation of the ABM treaty and the Anglo-American campaign of color revolutions and NATO base-building in the former Soviet bloc. These weapons, based on new physical principles, render U.S. ABM defenses obsolete, together with many U.S. utopian war-fighting doctrines developed under the reigns of Obama and Bush. Putin emphasized that the economic and "defense" aspects of his speech were not separate. Rather, the scientific breakthroughs were based on an in-depth economic mobilization of the physical economy. He stressed that Russia's survival was dependent upon marshalling continuous creative breakthroughs in basic science and the high-technology spinoffs which result, and their propagation through the entire population. He stressed that such breakthroughs are the product of providing an actually human existence to the entire society.

Compare what Russia and China have set out to accomplish with respect to the physical economy of the Earth, with the second and third paragraphs of Lyndon LaRouche's prescription for a durable peace in the LaRouche Doctrine:

The most crucial feature of present implementation of such a policy of durable peace is a profound change in the monetary, economic, and political relations between dominant powers and those relatively subordinated nations often classed as "developing nations." Unless the inequities lingering in the aftermath of modern colonialism are progressively remedied, there can be no durable peace on this planet.

Insofar as the United States and the Soviet Union acknowledge the progress of the productive powers of labor throughout the planet to be in the vital strategic interests of each and both, the two powers are bound to that degree and in that way by a common interest. This is the kernel of the political and economic policies of practice indispensable to the fostering of a durable peace between those two powers.

This is the perspective which has the British terrified and acting-out, insanely. Were Trump, Putin, and Xi to enter into negotiations based on the LaRouche Doctrine, a breakthrough will have occurred for all of mankind, a breakthrough to a permanent and durable peace. No neo-liberal, post-industrial, unipolar order can match this, no matter how much Allister Heath, Ms. May, or Boris Johnson rant and rave about it.

Christopher Steele's British Playground

As is well known by now, Christopher Steele was a long-time MI6 agent before "retiring" to form his own extremely lucrative private intelligence firm. The firm is said to have earned $200 million since its formation. Steele was an MI6 agent in Moscow around the time Skripal was recruited. He also later ran the MI6 Russia desk and would have known everything there was to know about Skripal. Pablo Miller, who recruited Skripal, worked for Steele's firm according to Miller's LinkedIn profile, and lived in the same town as Skripal.

Since Steele has been discredited in the United States, a huge fawning publicity campaign has been undertaken on his behalf. The campaign involves journalists who have collaborated directly with Steele in his smear job against Trump. Books by Luke Harding and Michael Isikoff seek to rebuild Steele's reputation.

A fawning piece by Jane Mayer in the New Yorker, as implausible as it is long, has been foisted on the public for the same reason.

There are some fascinating facts, however, in all this fawning prose:

Leaving aside Sergei Skripal's relationship with the central figure in the British-led coup against Donald Trump, it is clear that the May government's claim that he and his daughter were poisoned by a "novichok" nerve-agent, even if it is true, by no means makes a case that Putin's government was responsible. (It is of interest that as we were going to press on March 19, the foreign ministers of the European Union, after a briefing by British Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson that indicted Putin as responsible, issued a statement which condemned the poisoning of Skripal and his daughter, but pointedly failed to blame Putin or Russia.)

Craig Murray, a former British Ambassador to Uzbekistan who maintains contacts in the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, wrote March 16 that Britain's chemical-warfare scientists at Porton Down, "are not able to identify the nerve agent as being of Russian manufacture, and have been resentful of the pressure being placed on them to do so. Porton Down would only sign up to the formulation of a type developed by Russia, after a rather difficult meeting where this was agreed as a compromise formulation. The Russians were allegedly researching, in the novichok program, a generation of nerve agents which could be produced from commercially available precursors such as insecticides and fertilizers. This substance is a novichok in that sense. It is of that type. Just as I am typing on a laptop of a type developed by the United States, though this one was made in China."

The background to Porton Down's reluctance, is of course former Prime Minister Blair's phony dossier on Iraqi WMD, which Lyndon LaRouche fought, alongside the late British arms expert David Kelly, who exposed the "dodgy dossier," at the time.

"To anybody with a Whitehall background this has been obvious for several days," Murray continues. "The government has never said the nerve agent was made in Russia, or that it can only be made in Russia. The exact formulation of a type developed by Russia was used by Theresa May in Parliament, used by the U.K. at the UN Security Council, used by Boris Johnson on the BBC yesterday and, most tellingly of all, 'of a type developed by Russia,' is the precise phrase used in the joint communique‚ issued by the U.K., U.S.A., France, and Germany yesterday."

The main account of the chemical weapons cited by Theresa May was written by a Soviet dissident chemist named Vil Mirzayanov who now lives in the United States and published a book about his work at the Soviets' Uzbekistan chemical-warfare laboratory. In his much-publicized book, Mirzayanov sets out the formulas for the claimed substances. According to the March 16 Wall Street Journal, that publicity led to the novichoks' chemical structure being leaked, making them readily available for reproduction elsewhere. Ralf Trapp, a France-based consultant and expert on the control of chemical and biological weapons, told the Journal, "The chemical formula has been publicized and we know from publications from then-Czechoslovakia that they had worked on similar agents for defense in the 1980s. I'm sure other countries with developed programs would have as well."

But it does not seem that those "other countries" include Russia. The Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW), the independent agency charged by treaty with investigating claims like those just made by the British government, certified in September 2017 that the Russian government had destroyed its entire chemical weapons program, inclusive of its nerve agent production capabilities. In addition to Trapp's account, Seamus Martin, writing in the March 14 Irish Times, posits, based on personal knowledge, that novichoks were widely expropriated by East Bloc oligarchs and criminal elements in the Russian economic chaos of the 1990s.

Thus, after being disclosed by a dissident Russian chemist living in the United States, novichoks have been widely copied by other countries, according to the press accounts.

Further trouble for May's attempted hoax is found in the condition of the Skripals and of a police officer who went to their home. All were made critically ill, although they are still alive. Yet the emergency personnel who treated the Skripals, allegedly the victims of a deadly and absolutely lethal nerve poison, suffered no ill effects whatsoever.

The Skripal poisoning is being compared in the British press to the poisoning of Alexander Litvinenko in 2006. The former KGB and FSB officer was granted asylum in London and worked for the infamous anti-Putin British-intelligence-directed oligarch Boris Berezovsky in information warfare and other attacks on the Russian state, inclusive of McCarthyite accusations against any European politician seeking sane relations with Putin.

Litvinenko's case officer was none other than Christopher Steele, and Christopher Steele conducted MI6's investigation of the case, which, of course, found Putin himself culpable. Berezovsky's use of the disgraced British PR firm Bell, Pottinger is also credited with a significant role in public acceptance of this result. Berezovsky was a prime suspect in organizing the murder of American journalist Paul Klebnikov. Many believe that Berezovsky arranged Litvinenko's demise. Berezovsky himself died in Britain in mysterious circumstances following the loss of a major court case to another Russian oligarch, Roman Abramovich.

In the parliamentary debate in which Theresa May issued her provocation, opposition leader Jeremy Corbyn cautioned against a rush to judgment and pointed to the bloody playing field of Russian oligarchs and Russian organized crime as alternative areas for investigation. Had Corbyn added to that mix, "Western intelligence agencies," he would have been entirely on the right track. Corbyn also pointed out that these oligarchs had contributed millions to May's Conservative Party. The reaction by the British media, May's Conservatives, and Tony Blair's faction of the Labour Party was to paint Corbyn as a Putin dupe, including photoshopped images of the Labour leader in a Russian winter hat in front of the Kremlin.

The insane McCarthyite reactions to Corbyn's simple statements of fact show that he hit the nail on the head. If you want to find Skripal's poisoners, then, like Edgar Allen Poe, you must take in the whole picture first. The field of play involves the British intelligence services and the anti-Putin Russian oligarchs, each of which services the other, acting on behalf of British strategic objectives. It is no accident that the coup against Donald Trump and the latest British intelligence fraud, putting the entire world in peril, absolutely intersect one another.

[Mar 23, 2018] Megyn Kelly behaves like a rabid dog attacking Putin. Did not work well.

What is interesting that as there are 3.4K dislikes and only 1.2K likes. Looks like people start to decipher the NBC propaganda machine and neoliberal propaganda machine in general (NBC is not an outlier in this respect; this is run of mill neoliberal outlet)
Looks like Putin really has steel nerves. Megyn Kelly was really disgusting pushing her talking points like there is not tomorrow. Such a shill... . She also was organically able to listen. she has her prejudices can't shake them and actually does not want to shake them (may be this is connected with her job security ;-)
Notable quotes:
"... Confronting? The job of a real journalist is to ask questions, not to confront. Want to see the actual interview go watch Russian Insider is there in its totality. ..."
"... the moment i heard "American Democracy Under Attack" i stopped watching the video. ..."
"... Wtf NBC, this is ridiculously badly edited to fit an agenda. This is not journalism. ..."
"... It's not a debate if she keeps interrupting him, very disappointed in the way NBC took this golden opportunity to have a proper conversation with one of the super powers of the world and wasted it in "I tell you, you did this" and childish reaction from Megyn part. ..."
"... I am American and I am fully of aware how evil and deceptive this country is. I understand Putin is trying to do the right thing. But it seems as if almost 90-95% of people in this country still don't get it. ..."
"... How many governments in the world have been overthrown by the American CIA? How often does evil USA interfere in other states' elections? The USA government is pure evil. ..."
"... "American democracy, under attack".... by putting $46,000 worth of ads on Facebook, most of which were posted AFTER the election. Come on people, don't be foolish. ..."
"... "You believe that America meddled in your elections?" No Megyn Kelly, that's a historical fact, look up the "Harvard Boys" sponsored by USAID, look at the cover of the July 15, 1996 issue of Time Magazine entitled "Yanks to the Rescue", celebrating America's role in hijacking the Russian political system. ..."
Mar 16, 2018 | www.youtube.com

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z1pPkAOZI50


rayochapin , 1 week ago

Confronting? The job of a real journalist is to ask questions, not to confront. Want to see the actual interview go watch Russian Insider is there in its totality.

Sa yan , 1 week ago

the moment i heard "American Democracy Under Attack" i stopped watching the video.

Rumata , 1 week ago

Mr. Putin, did you intervene in the US elections? No But did you intervene? No And when you intervened, did you intervene? No Have you intervened with the oligarchs? No Did you help them intervene? No And in the US say you intervened you did it? No But you did not interfere, huh? Yes Interfered? No

spasev , 1 week ago (edited)

Where is the full interview? I had to go to a Russian government TV channel so I can watch the full interview. And you label the Russian media as state propaganda. Shame on you.

Games4us , 1 week ago

FYI, this interview is 1,5 hour long in original. here it is https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9mhi_AyQAyw&t=977s

Mr. Ben , 1 week ago

"Cut and paste" the interview with an agenda of bashing Russia, using "some people say" or "some American experts say" as the sources without any solid proof and evidence is shameful.

namodicha , 1 week ago

Please, please, please, any US citizen who is watching this, go watch the full interview, just in order to get an idea of what your media is worth. Listen to the words, also pay attention to how it is filmed and presented.You really need to know how much you are bullshitted to.

Linera Y , 1 week ago (edited)

When he talked about principles, why didn't she believe? Please, know that there are many people in the world with principles, who are not necessarily running and dying for capitalist money, brands, silly talentless pointless half-naked pop-stars, yachts or florida-like beaches, etc. There are many people who are fine to live without all these but with principles and other values , which are not that bad even they don't run around money!

John A , 1 week ago

Her first and fatal mistake was underestimating his intelligence, thinking she could trip him up with her aggressive tone. Putin has forgotten more about politics than Kelly has yet to learn. It's easy to see why NBC hacked the interview to pieces - she was pathetic and out of her league, just another brainwashed, deluded American shill.

Johnny Bucknell , 1 week ago

Putin is my hero!! Love Putin from New Zealand, NBC is part of fake news!!

James Medina , 1 week ago

What a fake news BS story... Still desperately trying to find an excuse as to why Crooked Hillary lost.

Mark Hauser , 1 week ago

After listening to the whole interview. This short clip looks like fake news!!!! How the cut the phrase and questions, out of context. Looks pathetic

dimirsen , 1 week ago

why did you decide to create this Frankenstein interview consisting of small snippets? Will the next interview be in a format of a 10 sec coub?

somfplease , 1 week ago

I watched the FULL unedited version of this before hand. Holyshit the editing is dishonest.

Kyle Witcher , 1 week ago

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W2MtKS1O8Ds THIS IS THE TRUE INTERVIEW, UNEDITED AND TRANSLATED Please share the TRUE interview. Megyn Kelly got destroyed.

Toye Adeniran , 1 week ago

Wtf NBC, this is ridiculously badly edited to fit an agenda. This is not journalism. I wasn't a fan of Russia before this, but you might be changing my mind by showing this edited crap. You're making things between the US and Russia worse not better by showing this edited crap.

Вован , 1 week ago

Wow, i am a Russian and i have to say you guys went too far with your propaganda. This is cut and edited beyond reason. Why you do this? Stop making our president look like the ultimate villain. Honestly, it was such a pleasure to listen to Vladimir Putin's reasonable approach. WTF NBC?

Zavier Brewer , 1 week ago

It's not a debate if she keeps interrupting him, very disappointed in the way NBC took this golden opportunity to have a proper conversation with one of the super powers of the world and wasted it in "I tell you, you did this" and childish reaction from Megyn part.

Che , 1 week ago

In America, Our political & Media Elite managed to collude Our foreign policy with Democracy promotion.We use Democracy promotion to achieved our foreign policy agenda.. In Libya we Used democracy promotion to achieve our foreign policy goal of getting ride of Gadhafi, following the fall of Gadhafi we abandon Libya on moved on to OUR NEXT TARGET, SYRIA.... IN SYRIA, we formed an alliance with non Democratic ARAB REGIMES to Overthrow A Circular government of ASSAD. when RUSSIA & IRAN INTERVEIN @ THE REQUEST OF THE SYRIAN GOVERNMENT, we have an issue with that.. OUR FOREIGN POLICY is INCONSISTENT AND UNDERMINES OUR NATIONAL INTEREST/Democracy. & Corporate Media is a SCAM... HAD WE HAD alternative NEWS SOURCE LIKE(social media) WE DO TODAY, WE WOULDN'T HAVE INVADED IRAQ ON FAKE EVIDENCE /INTELLIGENCE God Bless America

somtitious , 1 week ago

National Bias Corporation (NBC) I have watched the full interview and as usual, he flawed the beautiful but empty headed Kelly!

Joey Yared , 1 week ago

NBC is the reason why the US and Russia will never be allies. They seem to want war. Putin is probably laughing at the hysteria of the US media. Make no mistake, the MEDIA is getting in the way of peace with Russia. Putin is no saint, but keep in mind they have more nuclear weapons than us. Wouldn't hurt to mend the relationship...

Shantanu Nair , 1 week ago

This is American propaganda in its purest most undiluted form. The interpreter is putting words into Putin's mouth making him sound arrogant and brash. Its is Megyn Kelly who is the arrogant one just like the rest of the American mainstream media. I admire Putin for his patience, one must have the mental stability of a yogi to tolerate the half literate moronic deluge that radiates from Megyn's mouth. She was going too far, by interrupting Putin at every turn while Putin still has the decency to politely respond. If she is so democratic, I would advise her to pay a visit to her government's Saudi "allies.

Abe Jackson , 4 days ago

Putin is too smart for Megyn. Do you really think he's gonna tell you what you think when an American journalist asks you such questions? I don't like Putin either but he's got balls. I bet he knows English too but he knows that speaking a foreign language will put him at an disadvantage. Smart move by hiring an interpreter. By the way the US government throughout has done things far worse than rigging election.

DJKLY242 , 1 week ago (edited)

This isnt an interview more less the ' pressing' of 'false allegations & speculation'. Every response Putin gives is reasonable. Putin didnt have to agree with doing this. She sounds like a failed lawyer & wanna be politician. America is not Perfect, Russia is not perfect, I wish she would sit down with people in her own country & do the same but she doesnt. She acts as if she is asking these questions on behalf of Americans when really it is based on 'her' own views and for the sake of 'her' interview. This interview is flawed.

Big Money , 1 week ago

a new film about Putin, very interesting: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3RK2xmLVkDI

Pete Daltry , 1 week ago

Fake news

DazzaWebb , 1 week ago

America = The greatest threat to humanity since Nazi Germany.

Abz , 1 week ago

Don't spread lies NBC news. People should not believe this fake news! Glad to see there's more dislikes than likes, people are starting to know the truth.

Derek Robert , 1 week ago

NBC shilling for war as usual.

London England , 1 week ago (edited)

How disingenuous can NBC get? Actual quote from the interview: "Maybe, although they were Russian, they work for some American company. Maybe one of them worked with one of the candidates. I have no idea about this. These are not my problems" And in the headlines: "Putin on alleged US election interference: I don't care".

Henri Alanko , 1 week ago

It's been over a year and you've managed to find 13 Russian Twitter trolls. What a horrifying conspiracy. Worse than Pearl Harbor!

HeliOs AsclepiUs , 1 week ago

American Democracy is run by plutocrats Itching for war against Russia and China and Iran.. USA is a warmonger doing the bidding for Israel.. As if Russia had Trump elected.. What a joke.. American mainstream media is trying to manufacture consent from its people to go to war.. Watch and see..

VendPrekmurec , 1 week ago

A very russophobic primitive propaganda

zonkus culture , 1 week ago (edited)

United state have been interfering in African election forcing us to there evil democracy, killing Gaddafi for no reason. Look at what you guys did in Afghanistan, Iraq and other countries that don't want to do your evil democracy. After lying to the shameless United nations security council about Saddam's building of weapons of mass destruction, Who fight you about that?.

Love Animals-6 , 1 week ago

This is quite possibly the WORST interview ever conducted. This one is NOT a journalist. If you want to be a respectable broadcaster, fire this moron immediately. Horrendously non-factual, terribly edited - this interview is America in a nutshell. The world has awoken in this age and won't stand still.

Tony Stark , 1 week ago

This is the full 90 mins unedited version with English Subs, see the truth for yourselves. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9mhi_AyQAyw

ImperialLion , 1 week ago

Remember that United States interferes in the affairs of other nations ALL THE TIME. The U.S. attempted to influence the elections of foreign countries as many as 81 times between 1946 and 2000. Since 2000, the U.S. has attempted to sway elections in Ukraine, Kenya, Lebanon, and Afghanistan.

Adam Koester , 1 week ago

I am American and I am fully of aware how evil and deceptive this country is. I understand Putin is trying to do the right thing. But it seems as if almost 90-95% of people in this country still don't get it. They actually are repulsed and angry by the idea that we could be the bad guys. It has turned my family and friends against me. I am all alone...

FahadMHassan , 1 week ago

Megyn Kelly? Pressure Putin? Should I cry or laugh! It's like watching Ahmedinajad destroying King! Even your questions has no concrete clue to any Russian government connection! None!!!!! Are you really a journalist? Guys seriously if you wanna do tv then do it right! You can't pressure Putin by saying they are Russians if you don't have any any any any clues on government connection! You should really consider your questions next time!

Patanjali Kumar.P , 1 week ago

Certain Americans are just pompous arrogant idiots and letting them represent America makes the world look at all Americans as that pompous person.

Korven Griffin , 1 week ago

What an absolute farce. Megan is nothing but a sassy mouthed fool. Funny as f##@

Janihoy Berhan , 1 week ago (edited)

There's no "Russian Connection". This is a lie. This whole "Russian interference in US elections" is a political sham invented by the corrupt American system infiltrated by Zionists and Anti-Christian lobbyists.

Bulat Nurmukhanov , 5 days ago

Poor work by the journalist. She is supposed to have a dialogue, she is supposed to listen to the interviewee. Instead, it was just a bunch of questions and it looked quite awkward.

Richard Mulder , 1 week ago

How many governments in the world have been overthrown by the American CIA? How often does evil USA interfere in other states' elections? The USA government is pure evil.

Richard Rider , 1 week ago

God, is President Putin PATIENT to put up with her...Why does he put up with her?

paul david , 1 week ago

"American democracy, under attack".... by putting $46,000 worth of ads on Facebook, most of which were posted AFTER the election. Come on people, don't be foolish.

Wavanova , 1 week ago

"You believe that America meddled in your elections?" No Megyn Kelly, that's a historical fact, look up the "Harvard Boys" sponsored by USAID, look at the cover of the July 15, 1996 issue of Time Magazine entitled "Yanks to the Rescue", celebrating America's role in hijacking the Russian political system.

[Mar 23, 2018] Putin and neoliberaism in Russia: What they told us about socialism was a pack of lies, but what they told us about capitalism turned out to be perfectly true

Notable quotes:
"... After the disastrous Yeltsin rule (which came on the heels of disastrous rule by Gorbachev) Putin and his team rescued Russia economically, politically, and militarily. ..."
"... As far as Western "democracies" are concerned, the author hit the nail on the head. Yet there are lots of problems in Russia that the author does not mention. I think current Russian take on Soviet propaganda summarizes everything nicely: "what they told us about socialism was a pack of lies, but what they told us about capitalism turned out to be perfectly true". ..."
Mar 23, 2018 | www.unz.com

Anon [147] • Disclaimer says: March 22, 2018 at 7:23 pm GMT • 500 Words

Anon from TN

The author is painting Putin as larger-than-life figure, which he isn't. He is a normal man, capable and intelligent, but he is not by any means that superhuman leader and savior. He looks much greater than he is because you subconsciously compare him with pathetic nonentities that the Western world sees as leaders now. In fact, the leadership of the US Empire and all its vassal countries visibly degenerated in the last decades. Just compare De Gaulle with sad excuses La Belle France had for presidents lately. Or compare Nixon (he might have been a nasty person, but he was a great President of the country) with various clintons, bushes, obamas, and trumps. Or compare Chancellor Kohl with that poor excuse for a chancellor that Germany has today. You get the drift.

Just like the Soviet Union was not defeated by the US, but actually collapsed due to internal problems, regime change rampage is over largely because the United States pushed their luck and overextended themselves, and not just thanks to Putin. Throughout history, all dominant empires lose their grip and eventually crumble (remember Roman or British), and now it's the turn of the US Empire. Fortunately or unfortunately, the next will be the Chinese Empire, not Russian.

After the disastrous Yeltsin rule (which came on the heels of disastrous rule by Gorbachev) Putin and his team rescued Russia economically, politically, and militarily.

However, the US played a huge role in increasing Putin's popularity inside Russia, more than his propaganda machine ever could. Before the US-sponsored coup in Ukraine in 2014, Putin's approval hovered at about 45%. Nazi takeover in Ukraine and his decisive move to take Crimea back (it was transferred to Ukraine from Russia by Khruschev in 1956, illegally even by vague Soviet law; Crimea tried to get away from Ukraine ever since the breakup of the USSR in 1991; polls by Gallup and German company GfK showed that 80%+ Crimean residents wanted to join Russia, rather than remain in the madhouse that Ukraine became after the coup) resulted in his approval soaring above 70%.

Ill-advised sanctions added even more. Now he did not need to rig elections, he got genuine 70%+ vote, a level of support Western politicians can't even dream of (e.g., Trump was elected by 26% of eligible voters; Merkel's party in Germany got even less).

As far as Western "democracies" are concerned, the author hit the nail on the head. Yet there are lots of problems in Russia that the author does not mention. I think current Russian take on Soviet propaganda summarizes everything nicely: "what they told us about socialism was a pack of lies, but what they told us about capitalism turned out to be perfectly true".

[Mar 23, 2018] Russia has several significant problems with growth of Muslim population and the fact that this is last term for Putin, which might signify the end of the period of political stability

Mar 23, 2018 | www.unz.com

likbez says: March 23, 2018 at 8:22 am GMT 900 Words

This is way too rosy account. Russia has several significant problems with growth of Muslim population and the fact that this is last term for Putin, which might signify the end of the period of political stability.

Also economic rape by local and Western neoliberals of Russia in 1991-2000 was so successful that the country still can't fully recover. Hundreds of billions were stolen and transferred to the West. The "problem of neoliberal oligarchs" as "fifth column" still remains and is a threat to the future of the country. Too much depends of Putin personally. In this sense China is in a better position.

Moreover, Putin was forced into new arm race (by the USA) and military spending now are high and that creates another set of problems including growing influence of internal military industrial complex. Add to this the cost of Syria war and related set of external and internal problems, such as almost complete absence of allies (neither China not Iraq are reliable allies; most post-Soviet republics, even Kazakhstan, are now hostile to Russia)

And Russia does not have too many degrees of freedom yet, as it still depends on the West for many technologies and complex machinery. West dominates high technology area. Add to this brain drain and export of capital from Russia.

Technological dependence means that really crippling sanction are always a possibility. Availability of some of those technologies in China makes this problem less acute than in the past, but still in no way Russia can pursue completely independent policy.

Add to this dependence on dollar and the fact that Russian national bank, which remain a neoliberal institution, controlled by neoliberal Nabibulina ( https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Elvira_Nabiullina , who is close to Gref ) who like any "good" neoliberal keeps natural sovereign fund invested in US Treasuries. In this sense she is not that different from Kudrin.

And that means that those money can be confiscated anytime, like the USA did with Iran in the past. Also oligarchs money are now in danger due to clear desire of London to improve its financial standing at Russian oligarchs expense.

What is true is that neoliberalism as a political system entered deep crisis after 2008. In the USA political system became dysfunctional and there is some kind of "virtual" civil war between two factions of neoliberal oligarchy -- classic neoliberals and bastard neoliberals (aka economic nationalists). Add to this "strange" relations with Israel, which sometimes suggest that the tail wags the dog and I do not see why the USA can't experience something similar to processes that took place in Britain after the WWII.

But there is still no alternative social system on the horizon and return to "New deal capitalism" is impossible as the social alliance of management caste changed.

So Russia remains a neoliberal country which hates neoliberalism (in which by definition the power belongs to the financial oligarchy) and which tries to fight Western neoliberal imperialism in ofreign policy including attempts to make is a vassal and appropriate its natural resources (and Russia was a vassal of the West under Yeltsin) while remaining a neoliberal country and promoting neoliberalism externally. that's a recipe for a color revolution in the future, more successfully then 2012 "White" color revolution run by Moscow comprador class. Which in Moscow might well represent probably one third of the population (programmers, doctors, accountants, employees of foreign companies, part of "integrated with West" artistic cicles, writers, journalists, etc.). They were politically decimated by events in Ukraine and then by Russiagate hysteria in the USA. So "neoliberal compradors" class was not a player in the current elections. But that situation might eventually change and they can restore part of their political power.

So, in a way, Putin is some kind of Don Quixote which fight neoliberalism (and neoliberal globalization) externally, while allowing it to exist and even flourish internally (Medvedev, BTW looks like classic neoliberal, a Trojan horse in Putin's administration).

And internally neoliberalism naturally produces high level of corruption, which is amplified by "New Economic Policy" elements on the current Russia political regime (which allowed free operation of small and medium business, but tried to cut/decimate political power of large business -- a very difficult, if not impossible undertaking)

I think Professor Brovkin forgot the classic Lenin work "Imperialism, the Highest Stage of Capitalism". That's sad...

Moreover, former pro-Putin people who are now CEO of large government companies are not longer Pro-Putin people. Because their position influences their political orientation. In a sense, people like Gref and Sechin are dangerous strata of Putin-created "nova riches", who can betray him any moment, especially if their money will be under the treat of confiscation by the West.

It might well be that Putin was an anomaly and Russian will enter "Maidan" period or some other form of political crisis after Putin relinquishes his power.

BTW Ukrainians were successfully deceived by the West twice, so I do not see why Russians can't repeat this trick and step of the same rake again by electing some variation of Yeltsin who will promise them immediate bright future and jump in the standard of living (which for the last three year deteriorated due to low oil prices and a huge depreciation of ruble). For Ukrainians around 20 year was enough to forget all lessons.

My impression is that Russia might experience yet another serious of political cataclysm in the near future, when "Putinism" will disappear with Putin.

[Mar 22, 2018] As far as I can tell, blatant lies of Western propaganda achieved among the people with brains the same result as the Soviet propaganda: even if they state something truthful for a change, people would doubt that.

Mar 22, 2018 | www.unz.com

RobinG , Next New Comment March 21, 2018 at 9:34 pm GMT

@Anon

You are in a tiny bubble, and just because your small, smart sample seems "woke," don't imagine IQ is any barometer for resistance to group-think and propaganda.

Furthermore, don't assume that humans, high IQ or otherwise, are capable of extrapolation. My lunch group was composed of Christian activists who have [each] spent decades advocating for Palestinians. They are intimately aware of how propaganda has biased Americans for Israel. They have seen the film, Occupation of the American Mind . They know that only by persistent clever marketing, the Zionists sold the fraudulent "noble little Israel" myth.

And yet, they accept unquestioningly the MSM fake news about ANY OTHER SUBJECT. I find this particularly galling, but I believe it's a form of denial they use because the cognitive dissonance would be just too much to bear.

Twodees Partain , Next New Comment March 21, 2018 at 11:27 pm GMT
@jilles dykstra

Alas, I stayed with USA friends, well educated middle class, where CNN was the only 'news' source.
Three other USA acquaintances I visited in their homes, cannot remember having seen a newspaper other than a local one about marriages and funerals.

The USA reminded me of the Peking court, that, when British warships were reported on the coast, responded with 'there had been so many pirates already'.

In the Badlands, in a very small café, I identified myself as Dutch, from Holland, Netherlands. When all this did not ring bell I mentioned Europe, the first time in my life. This was understood.

Jilles, maybe your American friends are simply ignorant and easily fooled. That is the type of people who make CNN their sole source of news. This doesn't make them average Americans, just CNN fans.

If I came to visit a friend in Holland, and based my opinion of all Nederlanders on that friend and three others like him that I met while there, would you agree with me if I said that the average person in the Netherlands thought like my friend and his three friends?

[Mar 21, 2018] Putin drew Macron attention to the lack of evidence behind accusations against Russia and reiterated its readiness to conduct joint investigation into the incident

Mar 21, 2018 | en.farsnews.com

"The sides also touched upon the incident in Salisbury," the Kremlin stressed, underlining that "The Russian side drew attention to the lack of evidence behind accusations against Russia and reiterated its readiness to conduct joint investigation into the incident", TASS reported.

"The two presidents discussed in detail issue of the Syrian settlement in the context of the implementation of United Nations Security Council Resolution 2401 and the crisis in Ukraine in the light of the importance of the implementation of the Minsk agreements," the Kremlin stated.

The telephone conversation was initiated by the French Leader who called to congratulate Putin on his victory at Sunday's presidential polls in Russia, according to the Kremlin.

Macron spoke in favor of continuing joint work to promote comprehensive bilateral cooperation, including between civil societies within the Trianon Dialogue.

"It was agreed to continue to exchange views on the matters raised during the conversation at various levels," the press service added.

On March 4, Skripal and his daughter Yulia were exposed to a nerve agent in the city of Salisbury. They were found unconscious on a bench near a shopping center in Salisbury. Both are currently in the hospital in critical condition.

British Prime Minister Theresa May accused Russia of "an unlawful use of force" against her country. Subsequently, she announced that London would expel 23 Russian diplomats and would suspend high-level bilateral contacts.

Russia has vehemently denied its alleged involvement in the incident and said retaliatory measures would follow soon.

The Russian Foreign Ministry said on Saturday that 23 British diplomats had been declared personae non grata to be expelled from Russia in a week's period.

It also said the UK's consulate general in St. Petersburg would be closed and the British Council would stop its activities.

Apart from that, according to the Ministry, the Russian side reserved the right to take other measures "should further unfriendly steps are taken against Russia."

[Mar 21, 2018] If Putin was a happy accident, then Russia has a huge problem when he is gove -- which means in six years by Dmitry Orlov

Mar 21, 2018 | www.informationclearinghouse.info

... ... ...

And what does a vote for Putin actually mean, in terms of choice? Who picked him to begin with? Well, it turns out that Putin is a happy accident. Boris Yeltsin named him as his successor, and you could quite reasonably joke that Yeltsin was drunk at the time and didn't remember why he did that. But you could also surmise that Putin was picked for his renowned savvy in money-laundering and offshoring the ill-gotten gains of Russian oligarchs (his previous job back in St. Petersburg) and for his clever use of his KGB connections (from his job before that) to "settle questions." Remember, this was a time when the endlessly clever people who get paid to sit around and drink coffee over at the Pentagon imagined that "Russian mafia" was an emerging global threat. The oligarchs must have liked Putin, and Yeltsin, in keeping with his "leave no oligarch behind" program, did whatever they wanted him to do.

What they got instead was a pig in a poke. The oligarchs thought that they had recruited another faithful servant who, just like Yeltsin, would keep the state weak and facilitate their shameless plunder. Instead they got a steel-willed technocrat and a true Russian patriot who quickly manifested an awesome power to conjure up creative new ideologies. Instead of subservience, the oligarchs got his "doctrine of equidistance," according to which money≠power. (An oil baron by the name of Mikhail Khodorkovsky ran afoul of it, thinking that he could parlay his wealth into political power, and ended up cooling his heels in prison.) Instead of somebody who would look the other way while they ran roughshod over Russian society, they got his "dictatorship of the law," a significantly strengthened Russian state, and the once fearsome Russian mafia melted away like hoarfrost after sunrise. And the Russian oligarchy's plan to seamlessly meld into Western elite society using their expropriated wealth, leaving Russia behind as a withered husk, ran headlong into Putin's plan to reestablish "multipolarity" and to force other nations, even the United States, to treat Russia as an equal. This resulted in Western sanctions, which sent many oligarchs scurrying back to Russia and repatriating their funds under an amnesty program, lest they be frozen.

And so Putin, for Russia, is just a happy accident. Given that happy accidents are in general far less frequent than unhappy ones, a question arises: How can Russia reliably produce another Putin when the time comes? It is definitely a good thing that Russia has six years to answer this question, because this last presidential election, as well as all the previous ones, has conclusively demonstrated that Russian electoral politics are not the answer -- at least not yet. Let's look at Putin's "competition" (in quotes because, judging from the results, it was more of an exhibition).

The one who garnered the most votes was Pavel Grudinin, nominated by the Communists (although he wasn't a member) instead of their perennial presidential candidate and leader Gennady Zyuganov, who is getting rather long in the tooth. Grudinin failed to disclose his foreign bank accounts, or the fact that his son resides abroad, disqualifying him from holding the top secret clearance required of a Russian president. Nevertheless, he managed to get 15% or so of the vote.

Next in line was the nationalist perennial presidential candidate Vladimir Zhirinovsky, who is quite formidable, very entertaining, but also rather frightening because he is forever threatening to rain fire and brimstone on Russia's enemies both foreign and domestic. Nevertheless, he is definitely qualified to serve as president -- or to serve on your firing squad, because he is also a good shot, and you can be sure that he won't accidentally miss all of your vital organs and leave you writhing in pain while you bleed out slowly. You can regard him as Russia's presidential insurance, giving Russia's enemies an excellent reason to wish for Putin's good health, because Zhirinovsky is standing by, ready to make them say "ouch!" a lot.

And then we have a sort of winner, but not of the presidential sort: Xenia Sobchak. She is the daughter of Anatoly Sobchak, who was the first democratically elected mayor of St. Petersburg, co-author of Russia's constitution, and Putin's friend and mentor. She is a fully paid-up member of Russia's "golden youth" and pretty much does whatever she wants -- like run for president. Don't laugh, she got over 1% of the vote! She has dabbled in reality television, the fashion industry, this and that, is married to an actor, has a year-and-a-half-old son and is rumored to be pregnant.

She made me laugh because she lost Crimea even before she got her name on the ballot by declaring that she does not approve of Crimea being part of Russia. Recall that Crimea has been part of Russia since 1783, was "gifted" to the Ukraine by Nikita Khrushchev in 1954 in violation of the Soviet constitution, and then voted to rejoin Russia in 2014 after the Ukraine's government was overthrown in violation of the Ukrainian constitution: a rare instance of two constitutional violations canceling each other out.

Her slogan was "against all": she saw herself as a one-person alternative to the entire Russian political system. Neither she nor her supporters saw the obvious logical flaw with this platform: if she were truly "against all" then, to be consistent, she would have to campaign for people to vote against all -- including her. What she meant, of course, was "against all except me." Now that would have been a wonderful slogan, had she managed to explain what it was that made her so uniquely magic. Instead, she complained bitterly about everyone else. I believe that her presidential campaign was actually a clever merchandising operation. Maybe it had something to do with marketing eyeglass frames: she appeared to switch eyeglasses more often than most women change panties. There were some other kinds of "product placement" going on too.

Everybody else got less than 1%, but I will give them honorable mention anyway. There was the perennial liberal candidate Yavlinsky, who gave his rationale for running again this time (a hopeless cause given Russians' overwhelmingly unfavorable view of liberalism) as "I just really wanted to talk to some voters." Then, in no particular order (because I don't care) came the über-capitalist Titov, the über-Soviet Suraikin and the über-Russian Baburin. Titov ran on a pathetically hilarious slogan of "So, what about Titov?"

All of the candidates save Putin (who intelligently stayed above the fray) participated in several interminable rounds of "debates" whose format precluded all intelligent discussion. All candidates were given a few minutes to spout their programmatic gibberish while others tried to shout them down. At one point they ganged up on poor Xenia so hard that they made her cry. The only time they got to talk to Putin was after the election, when they were all invited to a sort of "thank you for playing" meeting at the Kremlin, and where they all appeared dignified, conciliatory and grateful.

This was all good, clean fun (except for making Xenia cry; that was mean) but it doesn't answer the essential question, which is: How can Russia find another Putin to elect president in six years? One of the most important reasons why the Soviet Union failed was the inability of its political elites to recruit and promote talent, causing it to degenerate into a dour, ossified, senile gerontocracy. This fact is currently very well understood in Russia, and a serious effort is underway to appoint young, promising governors and to put young people with leadership potential into positions of ministerial responsibility. Whether these efforts produce the intended result will become clear six years from now. A lot can happen in the intervening years -- both good and bad -- but at the moment the project to "make Russia great again" appears to be firing on all cylinders.

This article was originally published by " Club Orlov " -


shane · 4 hours ago

Orlov is a brilliant and patriotic Russian and is obviously pleased with the stability that Putin's reelection brings to his country in this time of crisis. However he is also strangely begrudging to President Putin here and in other articles I have read, casually throwing out a rather nasty and unsubstantiated slur that Putin during his early career in St Petersburg behaved as a low-life corrupt official, helping oligarchs off-shore their stolen riches. I would challenge Mr Orlov to produce not just hearsay but 'real' evidence of this. It seems to contradict the strongest features of Putin's character during his years as president, honesty and consistency. No one suggests that Putin must have a perfect record in all things, but such a serious accusation surely needs backup, or at least clarification as to what exactly Orlov means.
Pablo · 2 hours ago
As I only received this a couple of hours ago, I am pasting again my comments upon yesterday's Peter Koenigh's article:
Regret to have to say that all you people are squabbling over minor incidents, compared to the overall planned agenda. Craig Thomas is right, Paul Craig Roberts is right, Peter Koenigh is right, everybody who writes for ICH is right and Tom Feeley is a giant.
However, you are all missing the end goal of the universal plan. Defence industry, big pharma, oil industry, Monsanto, Bayer, Dupont, Nestlee, P&G, Goldman Sachs, Banks, the BIS, the Cheneys, Rockfellers, Bushes, Morgans, Rothchilds, Kissingers, Soros and Rumsfelds plus more, all belong to one single group that is known as the "establishment" that promotes globalisation. They have an agenda. It is not financial gluttony that drives them, but power. They already control the World's finances, and are aiming to soon also control the food chain and water supply. The purpose is simple logic. (Wish George Orwell were still alive). Their intent is to reduce the whole World's population to functioning "servants" with barely enough to survive upon, so that they be so encased within the efforts on their own survival in each one's little world, so that they be totally deprived of any stamina to check, object and criticize anything that the rulers of the "establishment" do or enact. The media belongs to them, and most of the reporters therein have already turned into the "servants" mentioned, evidently for their own survival. Hence the necessary brainwashing of the masses is secured. Any dissident that could endanger the agenda, has to be dealt with. One of those is Putin. (according to me, despite some of his misgivings, is the only leader in the Western World that deserves the position he holds). All the rest are plain buffoons. It is "we the people", "the brainwashed people" who have put them in office. However, there still may be some hope. Was Nostradamus right? What about China. A president for life? And what would be the consequences for the rest of us. Personal experience has taught me that the Chinese, as many too of the far Eastern peoples, know of little empathy within their culture. So what would be the future of the rest of us if they were to prevail globally? Should we not all embrace the Russians and Indians and hope for them to be our lifesaver buffer? Food for thought ladies and gentlemen !!!
Elliot · 1 hour ago
I hope the planet survives long enough to see who follows Putin as President of Russia.

[Mar 21, 2018] RT Chief, Margarita Simonyan: Why We Don't Respect the West Anymore

Notable quotes:
"... We don't want to live like you live, anymore. For fifty years, secretly and openly, we wanted to live like you, but not any longer. We have no more respect for you, and for those amongst us that you support, and for all those people who support you. That's how this 5% came to be. ..."
"... For that you only have yourself to blame. And also your Western politicians and analysts, newsmakers and scouts. Our people are capable to forgive a lot. But we don't forgive arrogance, and no normal nation would. Your only remaining Empire would be wise to learn history of its allies, all of them are former empires. To learn the ways they lost their empires. Only because of their arrogance. ..."
"... (in English in the original text -- trans. ..."
"... Neo-Liberalism is the worst because under this pseudo science they consider all things including the land, the air, the water, the human beings and the same life (all nature) as their rightful commodities. ..."
"... Unfortunately in this case Karl Rove is only making reference to what has been decided in political circles in Washington at that time. This habit of "defining new realities" is what all MSM and most Western politicians work after today. At any time at any case the MSM and the West system can change one reality perception to another without being held responsible for the factual truth. ..."
Mar 20, 2018 | russia-insider.com

And that's your fault, my Western friends. It was you who pushed us into "Russians never surrender" mode.

I've been telling you for a long time to find normal advisers on Russia. Sack all those parasites. With their short-sighted sanctions, heartless humiliation of our athletes (including athletes with disabilities ), with their "skripals" and ostentatious disregard of the most basic liberal values, like a presumption of innocence, that they manage to hypocritically combined with forcible imposition of ultra-liberal ideas in their own countries, their epileptic mass hysteria, causing in a healthy person a sigh of relief that he lives in Russia, and not in Hollywood, with their post-electoral mess in the United States, in Germany, and in the Brexit-zone;

with their attacks on RT, which they cannot forgive for taking advantage of the freedom of speech and showing to the world how to use it, and it turned out that the freedom of speech never was intended to be used for good, but was invented as an object of beauty, like some sort of crystal mop that shines from afar, but is not suitable to clean your stables, with all your injustice and cruelty, inquisitorial hypocrisy and lies you forced us to stop respecting you. You and your so called "values."

We don't want to live like you live, anymore. For fifty years, secretly and openly, we wanted to live like you, but not any longer. We have no more respect for you, and for those amongst us that you support, and for all those people who support you. That's how this 5% came to be.

For that you only have yourself to blame. And also your Western politicians and analysts, newsmakers and scouts. Our people are capable to forgive a lot. But we don't forgive arrogance, and no normal nation would. Your only remaining Empire would be wise to learn history of its allies, all of them are former empires. To learn the ways they lost their empires. Only because of their arrogance.

(in English in the original text -- trans. )

But the only Empire, you have left, ignores history, it doesn't teach it and refuses to learn it, meaning that it all will end the way it always does, in such cases.

In meantime, you've pushed us to rally around your enemy. Immediately, after you declared him an enemy, we united around him.

Before, he was just our President, who could be reelected. Now, he has become our Leader. We won't let you change this. And it was you, who created this situation.

It was you who imposed an opposition between patriotism and liberalism. Although, they shouldn't be mutually exclusive notions. This false dilemma, created by you, made us to chose patriotism.

Even though, many of us are really liberals, myself included.

Get cleaned up, now. You don't have much time left.


Muriel Kuri 13 hours ago ,

I agree with you, Margarita, and I am American! I remember as a child, being taught about that horrid USSR - to be so feared, ready at any moment to bomb us into oblivion! I remember the Bay of Pigs in Cuba. - not knowing the full details, but being told that Kennedy saved us all from WWIII. As time went on, we'd watch humorous shows detailing the large percentage of Russians in USSR wanting to AND defecting to America. We were shown Russians lined up around city blocks to buy toilet paper, shoes (any size, any color would do). Russians naivety was always made fun of, casting the majority of you as either clowns or criminals capable of all heinous crimes. Then came the 90s. I watched Yeltsin tottering around drunk, watched in horror as the USSR collapsed, wondering what had happened to you. Then came Putin - this young man being handed the reins of your collapsed, ruined country. Suddenly it seemed, we saw more and more of him. I remember watching his face when he had to explain to the tearful, waiting parents and friends of the mariners from the Kursk. His remark that if he could go down there himself and rescue them he would! I knew then, that this was a man to be watched, because I admired him at that moment. Over the years, after one successful term after another, I saw Russia rising like a Phoenix from the ashes of the USSR. I saw the pride returning to the Russian faces, saw smiles returning to their faces, watched you regaining your honor, your sovereignty as we started losing ours. Watching and listening, in horror and fear as more and more of our rights were taken away after 9/11. Discovering that it was a false flag (one of many, it seems), that took the lives of ordinary Americans and used their deaths to start killing more people in Iraq, which had nothing to do with the attack. More time going by, more rights taken away here, yet for you, rising ever more to greater economy, more business friendly environments in Russia, more world trade with an increasing number of trading partners.

Then started the demonization again - not of USSR, but of Russia - same story, different name. Putin - guilty of all crimes of mankind, blamed for everything under the sun, capable and willing to kill people around the globe with impunity, using chemicals and all other nefarious things! I watched the crimes committed in Ukraine, which deposed the legally elected president, and that tried to kill him after a coup that put Nazis in his place. I watched Crimea hold it's referendum, saw the fireworks display afterwards with all the happy faces. Russia was demonized even more and sanctioned greatly for that. Now to 2017 - I prayed that Putin would run again - (he waited a long time before stating he would run.) I knew that Russia sorely needed him to remain at the reins, guiding Russia (and the world, it seems) around the icebergs of hate, crimes against humanity, local wars, demise of any empathetic feelings towards others as we are all dragged along to the next, last war. Putin has been the one who has prevented it from happening in several situations, where it could have been started. But the demonization continues - little wonder America has lost it's appeal to most of you!

The deep state has us in thrall - (no Kennedy here now to protect us). I pray daily that all of us will survive to realize our hopes - yours and ours, but feel on a deep level that this time it won't happen. It seems that some people here truly want a war - feel they could survive the strike and retaliate to ruin your country, but that ours would remain mainly untouched. They think their bunkers will protect them - their expansive underground cities built for the richest and 'best' of America, while the rest of us are collateral damage. I am not rich - have no real savings, so am definitely not one of those to be saved - like so others around me. I'm sure many of you are in the same position, have the same fears and dreams as I do. I offer all of you my best wishes for a happy, healthy, free and safe world. Maybe your Putin actually does have a rabbit in his hat, or that silver bullet - the magic needed to save us all! I truly hope so.

wdg Muriel Kuri 5 hours ago ,

As a Canadian, thank you for your excellent summary of what I have concluded for some time. Sadly, the US is no longer a Constitutional Republic as established by the founders; it is not even a representative democracy. What the US has become is an Evil American Empire that is the greatest threat to peace and prosperity in the US and throughout the entire world. The good news is that a growing number of people in the US and the Western World realize this and are working very hard to return America to its founding ideals. The first stage in this process is the exposure of powerful members of the Deep State who have infiltrated and corrupted the essential institutions of government, freedom and justice.

TiredOfBsToo 13 hours ago ,

I used to be liberal before liberalism became a symbol of stupidity, war mongering and affiliated with the Deep State and it's rush to rule the world by destroying every society whose people chose to live life as they saw fit. The translation mechanism for understanding US leadership is projection. If the mouthpieces ramble on about their values, the meaning is that they are stating the values of their opponent or target country. If they're accusing a country of terrorism, they're talking about their own support for terrorism for geopolitical gains. If they're accusing a country of using chemical weapons, they're really talking about their own use of chemical weapons to launch another war and destroy yet another country's society. So one can easily see the true meaning of these psychopaths rantings and rhetoric by merely using the simple mechanism of projection to determine the truth.

Maria Angelica Brunell Solar Gerry Hiles 8 hours ago ,

Many times I am completely confused by the use that Americans make of traditional political or economic terms. "Socialism", for example, applied to Democrats? Calling "Liberals" those who like to defy society's traditional customs? "Marxism" is no longer a theory about the conflict of classes, or a dialectical understanding of society! Many political discussions are due to the different interpretations that people give to the same words. The US political science vocabulary is in chaos- along with many other US things!

tomo stojanovic Maria Angelica Brunell Solar an hour ago ,

Americans are keen on Orwellian renaming

wdg Maria Angelica Brunell Solar 5 hours ago ,

Seventy years ago, George Orwell wrote the prophetic essay, "Politics
and the English Language," in which he noted that politicians,
journalists and academics were increasingly using meaningless words and
euphemisms to make "lies sound truthful and murder respectable, and...
give an appearance of solidity to pure wind." Source: https://www.alternet.org/el...

Rafael Gerry Hiles 6 hours ago ,

Totally agree. Fundamental or Philosophical Liberalism has to be with the human being and his liberties and rights.
Economic Liberalism has to be with the commodities trade and physical money, financial money, and their privileges put over the human beings, of course this is a euphemism because whom are really self conceded such privileges are the owners of those goods i.e. International Usurers.
Economic Liberalism morphed into the worst; into Neo-(Economic)-Liberalism (They call it only "liberalism" in order to confuse their enemies, all the people).
Neo-Liberalism is the worst because under this pseudo science they consider all things including the land, the air, the water, the human beings and the same life (all nature) as their rightful commodities.

Tommy Jensen TiredOfBsToo 13 hours ago ,

Double speak, double thinking, defining realities, part of the same s..t.

TiredOfBsToo Tommy Jensen 13 hours ago ,

You're absolutely correct! We've had the worst of the worst running and influencing those that run the country and this man was a psycho, but we have more, too many!

Gerry Hiles Tommy Jensen 12 hours ago ,

And Dubya called him "Turd Blossom". Apt. Perhaps relating to mutual dehumanisation in Skull & Bones?

Peter Jennings Tommy Jensen 5 hours ago ,

The arrogance of the man. I do hope he lives long enough to see the fruits of his labor whilst the economy collapses around him. I guess when that happens he and his other hapless miscreants will keep their heads down and rely on security to protect them from the karma hurtling towards them.

Nothing this man has done has benefited the American people.

Tommy Jensen Peter Jennings 3 hours ago ,

Unfortunately in this case Karl Rove is only making reference to what has been decided in political circles in Washington at that time. This habit of "defining new realities" is what all MSM and most Western politicians work after today. At any time at any case the MSM and the West system can change one reality perception to another without being held responsible for the factual truth.

[Mar 21, 2018] Washington's Invasion of Iraq at Fifteen

Highly recommended!
Mar 21, 2018 | www.counterpunch.org

March 20 marks a major anniversary. You'd be forgiven for not knowing it. Fifteen years after we invaded Iraq, few in the US are addressing our legacy there. But it's worth recalling we shattered that country.

We made it a terrorist hotspot, as expected. US and British intelligence, in the months preceding the invasion, expected Bush's planned assault would invigorate Al-Qaeda. The group " would see an opportunity to accelerate its operational tempo and increase terrorist attacks," particularly " in the US and UK ," assessments warned. Due course for the War on Terror.

Follow-up reports confirmed these predictions. "The Iraq conflict has become the 'cause celebre' for jihadists, breeding a deep resentment of US involvement in the Muslim world and cultivating supporters for the global jihadist movement," Washington analysts explained in 2006.

Fawaz Gerges lists two groups this milieu produced: Al-Qaeda in Iraq (AQI), "a creature of the 2003 US-led invasion," and ISIS, "an extension of AQI."

There were good reasons for anyone -- not just jihadists -- to resent US involvement. Consider sectarianism. "The most serious sectarian and ethnic tensions in Iraq's modern history followed the 2003 US-led occupation," Sami Ramadani affirmed . Nabil Al-Tikriti concurs , citing US policies that "led to a progressive, incessant increase in sectarian tensions." The Shia death squads " organized by U.S. operatives" were one such decision.

The extent to which these squads succeeded is, in part, what scholars debate when they tally the war deaths. Low estimates, like Iraq Body Count's, put civilians killed at just over 200,000. One research team determined some "half million deaths in Iraq could be attributable to the war." Physicians for Social Responsibility concluded "that the war has, directly or indirectly, killed around 1 million people in Iraq," plus 300,000 more in Afghanistan and Pakistan.

Iraqis surviving the inferno confronted a range of nightmares. The UN " reported that over 4.4 million Iraqis were internally displaced, and an additional 264,100 were refugees abroad," for example. US forces dealt with Iraqi prisoners -- 70-90% of whom were " arrested by mistake " -- by "arranging naked detainees in a pile and then jumping on them;" "breaking chemical lights and pouring the phosphoric liquid on detainees;" and "forcing groups of male detainees to masturbate themselves," to list some of the ways we imparted , with the approval of top Bush administration officials, democratic principles.

Then there are the generations of future Iraqis in bomb-battered cities: Fallujah, Basra. In the former, "the reported increases in cancer and infant mortality are alarmingly high" -- perhaps " worse than Hiroshima " -- while "birth defects reached in 2010 unprecedented numbers." In the same vein, "a pattern of increase in congenital birth defects" plagues Basra, and "many suspect that pollution created by the bombardment of Iraqi cities has caused the current birth defect crisis in that country."

This bombardment began decades before 2003, it's crucial to clarify. We can recall UN Under-Secretary-General Martti Ahtisaari's mission to Baghdad after Operation Desert Storm. He and his team were familiar with the literature on the bombings, he wrote in March 1991, "fully conversant with media reports regarding the situation in Iraq," but realized upon arrival "that nothing that we had seen or read had quite prepared us for the particular form of devastation" -- "near-apocalyptic" -- "which has now befallen the country," condemning it "to a pre-industrial age" for the foreseeable future. This was the scale of ruin when the UN Security Council imposed sanctions. The measures were "at every turn shaped by the United States," whose "consistent policy " was "to inflict the most extreme economic damage possible on Iraq."

The policy was, in this respect, a ripping success. The UN estimated in 1995 that the sanctions had murdered over a half-million children -- " worth it ," Madeleine Albright said -- one factor prompting two successive UN Humanitarian Coordinators in Iraq to resign. Denis Halliday thought the sanctions "criminally flawed and genocidal;" Hans von Sponeck agreed , citing evidence of "conscious violation of human rights and humanitarian law on the part of governments represented in the Security Council, first and foremost those of the United States and the United Kingdom."

Eliminating hundreds of thousands of starving children was just the prequel to the occupation -- "the biggest cultural disaster since the descendants of Genghis Khan destroyed Baghdad in 1258," in one writer's judgment . But try to find more than a handful of commentators reflecting on any of these issues on this dark anniversary. Instead, silence shows the deep US capacity for forgetting.

Nick Alexandrov lives in Tulsa, Oklahoma. He can be reached at: nicholas.alexandrov@gmail.com

[Mar 21, 2018] Whataboutism Is A Nonsensical Propaganda Term Used To Defend The Failed Status Quo by Mike Krieger

Highly recommended!
The classic question " Who is judging the judges"
Western journalists, with a very small exception (real outliers), are experts at presenting one-sided arguments, whatever the facts and evidence. Look at Meagan Kelly interviews for the inspiration. They know how to wear down any dissident who does not buy into government talking points
Mar 20, 2018 | www.zerohedge.com

Authored by Mike Krieger via Liberty Blitzkrieg blog,

If you spend any time on Twitter, you'll probably be familiar with the latest pathetic attempt to defend and insulate the U.S. status quo from criticism. It centers around the usage of an infantile and meaningless term, "whataboutism."

Let's begin with one particularly absurd accusation of "whataboutism" promoted by NPR last year:

When O'Reilly countered that "Putin is a killer," Trump responded, "There are a lot of killers. You got a lot of killers. What, you think our country is so innocent?"

This particular brand of changing the subject is called "whataboutism" -- a simple rhetorical tactic heavily used by the Soviet Union and, later, Russia. And its use in Russia helps illustrate how it could be such a useful tool now, in America. As Russian political experts told NPR, it's an attractive tactic for populists in particular, allowing them to be vague but appear straight-talking at the same time.

The idea behind whataboutism is simple: Party A accuses Party B of doing something bad. Party B responds by changing the subject and pointing out one of Party A's faults -- "Yeah? Well what about that bad thing you did?" (Hence the name.)

It's not exactly a complicated tactic -- any grade-schooler can master the "yeah-well-you-suck-too-so-there" defense. But it came to be associated with the USSR because of the Soviet Union's heavy reliance upon whataboutism throughout the Cold War and afterward, as Russia.

This is a really embarrassing take by NPR .

First, the author tries to associate a tactic that's been around since humans first wandered into caves -- deflecting attention away from yourself by pointing out the flaws in others -- into some uniquely nefarious Russian propaganda tool. Second, that's not even what Trump did in this example.

In his response to O'Reilly, Trump wasn't using "whataboutism" to deflect away from his own sins. Rather, he offered a rare moment of self-reflection about the true role played by the U.S. government around the world. This isn't "whataboutism," it's questioning the hypocrisy and abuse of power of one's own government. It's an attempt to take responsibility for stuff he might actually be able to change as President. It's the most ethical and honest response to that question in light of the amount of violence the U.S. government engages in abroad. If our leaders did this more often, we might stop repeatedly jumping from one insane and destructive war to the next.

Had O'Reilly's question been about the U.S. government's ongoing support of Saudi Arabia's war crimes in Yemen and Trump shifted the conversation to Russian atrocities, he could then be fairly accused of changing the subject to avoid accountability. In that case, you could condemn Trump for "whataboutism" because he intentionally deflected attention away from his own government's sins to the sins of another. This sort of thing is indeed very dangerous, especially when done by someone in a position of power.

But here's the thing. You don't need some catchy, infantile term like "whataboutism" to point out that someone in power's deflecting attention from their own transgressions. I agree wholeheartedly with Adam Johnson when he states:

He's absolutely right. One should never rely on the lazy use of a cutesy, catchy term like "whataboutism" as a retort to someone who points out a glaring contradiction. If you do, you're either a propagandist with no counterargument or a fool who mindlessly adopts the jingoistic cues of others. Responding to someone by saying "that's just whataboutism" isn't an argument, it's an assault on one's logical faculties. It's attempt to provide people with a way to shut down debate and conversation by simply blurting out a clever sounding fake-word. Here's an example of how I've seen it used on Twitter.

One U.S. citizen (likely a card carrying member of "the resistance") will regurgitate some standard intel agency line on Syria or Russia. Another U.S. citizen will then draw attention to the fact that their own government plays an active role in egregious war crimes in Yemen on behalf of the Saudis. This person will proceed to advocate for skepticism with regard to U.S. government and intelligence agency war promotion considering how badly the public was deceived in the run up to the Iraq war. For this offense, they'll be accused of "whataboutism."

The problem with this accusation is that this person isn't switching the subject to bring up another's transgression to deflect from scrutiny of his or her behavior. In contrast, the person is putting the conversation in its rightful place, which is to question the behavior of one's own country. When it comes to issues such as nation-state violence, the primary duty of a citizen is not to obsess all day about the violence perpetrated by foreign governments, but to hold one's own government accountable. This is as true for an American citizen in American as it is for a Russian citizen in Russia.

NPR explained how the Russian government used "whataboutism" to deflect away from it's own crimes, but Trump actually did the opposite in his interview with O'Reilly. He wasn't deflecting away from his own country's crimes, he was pointing out that they exist. That's precisely what you're supposed to do as a citizen.

The problem arises when governments deflect attention away from their own crimes for which they are actually responsible, by pointing out the crimes of a foreign government. This is indeed propaganda and an evasion of responsibility. Calling out your own government's hypocrisy in matters of state sanctioned murder abroad is the exact opposite sort of thing.

Noam Chomsky put it better than I ever could. Here's what he said in a 2003 interview :

QUESTION: When you talk about the role of intellectuals, you say that the first duty is to concentrate on your own country. Could you explain this assertion?

CHOMSKY: One of the most elementary moral truisms is that you are responsible for the anticipated consequences of your own actions. It is fine to talk about the crimes of Genghis Khan, but there isn't much that you can do about them. If Soviet intellectuals chose to devote their energies to crimes of the U.S., which they could do nothing about, that is their business. We honor those who recognized that the first duty is to concentrate on your own country. And it is interesting that no one ever asks for an explanation, because in the case of official enemies, truisms are indeed truisms. It is when truisms are applied to ourselves that they become contentious, or even outrageous. But they remain truisms. In fact, the truisms hold far more for us than they did for Soviet dissidents, for the simple reason that we are in free societies, do not face repression, and can have a substantial influence on government policy. So if we adopt truisms, that is where we will focus most of our energy and commitment. The explanation is even more obvious than in the case of official enemies.

Naturally, truisms are hated when applied to oneself. You can see it dramatically in the case of terrorism. In fact one of the reasons why I am considered "public enemy number one" among a large sector of intellectuals in the U.S. is that I mention that the U.S. is one of the major terrorist states in the world and this assertion, though plainly true, is unacceptable for many intellectuals, including left-liberal intellectuals, because if we faced such truths we could do something about the terrorist acts for which we are responsible, accepting elementary moral responsibilities instead of lauding ourselves for denouncing the crimes official enemies, about which we can often do very little.

Elementary honesty is often uncomfortable, in personal life as well, and there are people who make great efforts to evade it. For intellectuals, throughout history, it has often come close to being their vocation. Intellectuals are commonly integrated into dominant institutions. Their privilege and prestige derives from adapting to the interests of power concentrations, often taking a critical look but in very limited ways. For example, one may criticize the war in Vietnam as a "mistake" that began with "benign intentions". But it goes too far to say that the war is not "a mistake" but was "fundamentally wrong and immoral". the position of about 70 percent of the public by the late 1960s, persisting until today, but of only a margin of intellectuals. The same is true of terrorism. In acceptable discourse, as can easily be demonstrated, the term is used to refer to terrorist acts that THEY carry out against US, not those that WE carry out against THEM. That is probably close to a historical universal. And there are innumerable other examples.

For saying the above, Noam Chomsky would surely be labeled the godfather of "whataboutism" by Twitter's resistance army, but he's actually advocating the most ethical, logical and courageous path of citizenship. U.S. taxpayers aren't paying for Russia's military operations, but they are paying for the U.S. government's. The idea that U.S. citizens emphasizing U.S. violence are committing the thought-crime of "whataboutism" when it comes to foreign policy is absurd. Our primary responsibility as citizens is our own aggressive and violent foreign policy, not that of other countries.

Naturally, this isn't how neocon/neoliberal and intelligence agency imperialists want you to think. Proponents of the American empire need the public to ignore the atrocities of the U.S. government and its allies for obvious reasons, while constantly obsessing over the atrocities of the empire's official enemies. This is the only way to continue to exert force abroad without domestic pushback, and it's critical in order to keep the imperial gravy train going for those it benefits so significantly. How do you shut down vibrant foreign policy debate on social media that exposes imperial hypocrisy? Accuse people of "whataboutism."

That's what I see going on. I see the weaponization of a cutesy, catchy term on social media in order to prevent people from questioning their own government. It's completely logical and ethical for U.S. citizens to push back against those arguing for more regime change wars by pointing out the evils of our own foreign policy.

In fact, the unethical position is the one espoused by those who claim the U.S. can do no wrong, but when an adversary country does what we permit ourselves to do, they must be bombed into oblivion. These people know they have no argument, so they run around condemning those trying to hold their own government accountable of "whataboutism." It's a nonsensical term with no real meaning or purpose other than to defend imperial talking points.

Accusations of "whataboutism" amount to a cynical, sleazy attempt to stifle debate without actually engaging in argument. It's also the sort of desperate and childish propaganda tactic you'd expect during late-stage imperial decline.

* * *

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[Mar 21, 2018] How They Sold the Iraq War by Jeffrey St. Clair

Highly recommended!
Notable quotes:
"... Americans were the victims of an elaborate con job, pelted with a daily barrage of threat inflation, distortions, deceptions and lies, not about tactics or strategy or war plans, but about justifications for war. The lies were aimed not at confusing Saddam's regime, but the American people. By the start of the war, 66 per cent of Americans thought Saddam Hussein was behind 9/11 and 79 per cent thought he was close to having a nuclear weapon. ..."
"... This charade wouldn't have worked without a gullible or a complicit press corps. Victoria Clarke, who developed the Pentagon plan for embedded reports, put it succinctly a few weeks before the war began: "Media coverage of any future operation will to a large extent shape public perception." ..."
"... During the Vietnam War, TV images of maimed GIs and napalmed villages suburbanized opposition to the war and helped hasten the U.S. withdrawal. The Bush gang meant to turn the Vietnam phenomenon on its head by using TV as a force to propel the U.S.A. into a war that no one really wanted. ..."
"... When the Pentagon needed a heroic story, the press obliged. Jessica Lynch became the war's first instant celebrity. Here was a neo-gothic tale of a steely young woman wounded in a fierce battle, captured and tortured by ruthless enemies, and dramatically saved from certain death by a team of selfless rescuers, knights in camo and night-vision goggles. ..."
"... Back in 1988, the Post felt much differently about Saddam and his weapons of mass destruction. When reports trickled out about the gassing of Iranian troops, the Washington Post's editorial page shrugged off the massacres, calling the mass poisonings "a quirk of war." ..."
"... The Bush team displayed a similar amnesia. When Iraq used chemical weapons in grisly attacks on Iran, the U.S. government not only didn't object, it encouraged Saddam. ..."
"... Nothing sums up this unctuous approach more brazenly than MSNBC's firing of liberal talk show host Phil Donahue on the eve of the war. The network replaced the Donahue Show with a running segment called Countdown: Iraq, featuring the usual nightly coterie of retired generals, security flacks, and other cheerleaders for invasion. ..."
Mar 20, 2018 | www.counterpunch.org

The war on Iraq won't be remembered for how it was waged so much as for how it was sold. It was a propaganda war, a war of perception management, where loaded phrases, such as "weapons of mass destruction" and "rogue state" were hurled like precision weapons at the target audience: us.

To understand the Iraq war you don't need to consult generals, but the spin doctors and PR flacks who stage-managed the countdown to war from the murky corridors of Washington where politics, corporate spin and psy-ops spooks cohabit.

Consider the picaresque journey of Tony Blair's plagiarized dossier on Iraq, from a grad student's website to a cut-and-paste job in the prime minister's bombastic speech to the House of Commons. Blair, stubborn and verbose, paid a price for his grandiose puffery. Bush, who looted whole passages from Blair's speech for his own clumsy presentations, has skated freely through the tempest. Why?

Unlike Blair, the Bush team never wanted to present a legal case for war. They had no interest in making any of their allegations about Iraq hold up to a standard of proof. The real effort was aimed at amping up the mood for war by using the psychology of fear.

Facts were never important to the Bush team. They were disposable nuggets that could be discarded at will and replaced by whatever new rationale that played favorably with their polls and focus groups. The war was about weapons of mass destruction one week, al-Qaeda the next. When neither allegation could be substantiated on the ground, the fall back position became the mass graves (many from the Iran/Iraq war where the U.S.A. backed Iraq) proving that Saddam was an evil thug who deserved to be toppled. The motto of the Bush PR machine was: Move on. Don't explain. Say anything to conceal the perfidy behind the real motives for war. Never look back. Accuse the questioners of harboring unpatriotic sensibilities. Eventually, even the cagey Wolfowitz admitted that the official case for war was made mainly to make the invasion palatable, not to justify it.

The Bush claque of neocon hawks viewed the Iraq war as a product and, just like a new pair of Nikes, it required a roll-out campaign to soften up the consumers. The same techniques (and often the same PR gurus) that have been used to hawk cigarettes, SUVs and nuclear waste dumps were deployed to retail the Iraq war. To peddle the invasion, Donald Rumsfeld and Colin Powell and company recruited public relations gurus into top-level jobs at the Pentagon and the State Department. These spinmeisters soon had more say over how the rationale for war on Iraq should be presented than intelligence agencies and career diplomats. If the intelligence didn't fit the script, it was shaded, retooled or junked.

Take Charlotte Beers whom Powell picked as undersecretary of state in the post-9/11 world. Beers wasn't a diplomat. She wasn't even a politician. She was a grand diva of spin, known on the business and gossip pages as "the queen of Madison Avenue." On the strength of two advertising campaigns, one for Uncle Ben's Rice and another for Head and Shoulder's dandruff shampoo, Beers rocketed to the top of the heap in the PR world, heading two giant PR houses: Ogilvy and Mathers as well as J. Walter Thompson.

At the State Department Beers, who had met Powell in 1995 when they both served on the board of Gulf Airstream, worked at, in Powell's words, "the branding of U.S. foreign policy." She extracted more than $500 million from Congress for her Brand America campaign, which largely focused on beaming U.S. propaganda into the Muslim world, much of it directed at teens.

"Public diplomacy is a vital new arm in what will combat terrorism over time," said Beers. "All of a sudden we are in this position of redefining who America is, not only for ourselves, but for the outside world." Note the rapt attention Beers pays to the manipulation of perception, as opposed, say, to alterations of U.S. policy.

Old-fashioned diplomacy involves direct communication between representatives of nations, a conversational give and take, often fraught with deception (see April Glaspie), but an exchange nonetheless. Public diplomacy, as defined by Beers, is something else entirely. It's a one-way street, a unilateral broadcast of American propaganda directly to the public, domestic and international, a kind of informational carpet-bombing.

The themes of her campaigns were as simplistic and flimsy as a Bush press conference. The American incursions into Afghanistan and Iraq were all about bringing the balm of "freedom" to oppressed peoples. Hence, the title of the U.S. war: Operation Iraqi Freedom, where cruise missiles were depicted as instruments of liberation. Bush himself distilled the Beers equation to its bizarre essence: "This war is about peace."

Beers quietly resigned her post a few weeks before the first volley of tomahawk missiles battered Baghdad. From her point of view, the war itself was already won, the fireworks of shock and awe were all after play.

Over at the Pentagon, Donald Rumsfeld drafted Victoria "Torie" Clarke as his director of public affairs. Clarke knew the ropes inside the Beltway. Before becoming Rumsfeld's mouthpiece, she had commanded one of the world's great parlors for powerbrokers: Hill and Knowlton's D.C. office.

Almost immediately upon taking up her new gig, Clarke convened regular meetings with a select group of Washington's top private PR specialists and lobbyists to develop a marketing plan for the Pentagon's forthcoming terror wars. The group was filled with heavy-hitters and was strikingly bipartisan in composition. She called it the Rumsfeld Group and it included PR executive Sheila Tate, columnist Rich Lowry, and Republican political consultant Rich Galen.

The brain trust also boasted top Democratic fixer Tommy Boggs, brother of NPR's Cokie Roberts and son of the late Congressman Hale Boggs of Louisiana. At the very time Boggs was conferring with top Pentagon brass on how to frame the war on terror, he was also working feverishly for the royal family of Saudi Arabia. In 2002 alone, the Saudis paid his Qorvis PR firm $20.2 million to protect its interests in Washington. In the wake of hostile press coverage following the exposure of Saudi links to the 9/11 hijackers, the royal family needed all the well-placed help it could buy. They seem to have gotten their money's worth. Boggs' felicitous influence-peddling may help to explain why the references to Saudi funding of al-Qaeda were dropped from the recent congressional report on the investigation into intelligence failures and 9/11.

According to the trade publication PR Week, the Rumsfeld Group sent "messaging advice" to the Pentagon. The group told Clarke and Rumsfeld that in order to get the American public to buy into the war on terrorism, they needed to suggest a link to nation states, not just nebulous groups such as al-Qaeda. In other words, there needed to be a fixed target for the military campaigns, some distant place to drop cruise missiles and cluster bombs. They suggested the notion (already embedded in Rumsfeld's mind) of playing up the notion of so-called rogue states as the real masters of terrorism. Thus was born the Axis of Evil, which, of course, wasn't an "axis" at all, since two of the states, Iran and Iraq, hated each other, and neither had anything at all to do with the third, North Korea.

Tens of millions in federal money were poured into private public relations and media firms working to craft and broadcast the Bush dictat that Saddam had to be taken out before the Iraqi dictator blew up the world by dropping chemical and nuclear bombs from long-range drones. Many of these PR executives and image consultants were old friends of the high priests in the Bush inner sanctum. Indeed, they were veterans, like Cheney and Powell, of the previous war against Iraq, another engagement that was more spin than combat .

At the top of the list was John Rendon, head of the D.C. firm, the Rendon Group. Rendon is one of Washington's heaviest hitters, a Beltway fixer who never let political affiliation stand in the way of an assignment. Rendon served as a media consultant for Michael Dukakis and Jimmy Carter, as well as Reagan and George H.W. Bush. Whenever the Pentagon wanted to go to war, he offered his services at a price. During Desert Storm, Rendon pulled in $100,000 a month from the Kuwaiti royal family. He followed this up with a $23 million contract from the CIA to produce anti-Saddam propaganda in the region.

As part of this CIA project, Rendon created and named the Iraqi National Congress and tapped his friend Ahmed Chalabi, the shady financier, to head the organization.

Shortly after 9/11, the Pentagon handed the Rendon Group another big assignment: public relations for the U.S. bombing of Afghanistan. Rendon was also deeply involved in the planning and public relations for the pre-emptive war on Iraq, though both Rendon and the Pentagon refuse to disclose the details of the group's work there.

But it's not hard to detect the manipulative hand of Rendon behind many of the Iraq war's signature events, including the toppling of the Saddam statue (by U.S. troops and Chalabi associates) and videotape of jubilant Iraqis waving American flags as the Third Infantry rolled by them. Rendon had pulled off the same stunt in the first Gulf War, handing out American flags to Kuwaitis and herding the media to the orchestrated demonstration. "Where do you think they got those American flags?" clucked Rendon in 1991. "That was my assignment."

The Rendon Group may also have had played a role in pushing the phony intelligence that has now come back to haunt the Bush administration. In December of 2002, Robert Dreyfuss reported that the inner circle of the Bush White House preferred the intelligence coming from Chalabi and his associates to that being proffered by analysts at the CIA.

So Rendon and his circle represented a new kind of off-the-shelf PSYOPs , the privatization of official propaganda. "I am not a national security strategist or a military tactician," said Rendon. "I am a politician, and a person who uses communication to meet public policy or corporate policy objectives. In fact, I am an information warrior and a perception manager."

What exactly, is perception management? The Pentagon defines it this way: "actions to convey and/or deny selected information and indicators to foreign audiences to influence their emotions, motives and objective reasoning." In other words, lying about the intentions of the U.S. government. In a rare display of public frankness, the Pentagon actually let slip its plan (developed by Rendon) to establish a high-level den inside the Department Defense for perception management. They called it the Office of Strategic Influence and among its many missions was to plant false stories in the press.

Nothing stirs the corporate media into outbursts of pious outrage like an official government memo bragging about how the media are manipulated for political objectives. So the New York Times and Washington Post threw indignant fits about the Office of Strategic Influence; the Pentagon shut down the operation, and the press gloated with satisfaction on its victory. Yet, Rumsfeld told the Pentagon press corps that while he was killing the office, the same devious work would continue. "You can have the corpse," said Rumsfeld. "You can have the name. But I'm going to keep doing every single thing that needs to be done. And I have."

At a diplomatic level, despite the hired guns and the planted stories, this image war was lost. It failed to convince even America's most fervent allies and dependent client states that Iraq posed much of a threat. It failed to win the blessing of the U.N. and even NATO, a wholly owned subsidiary of Washington. At the end of the day, the vaunted coalition of the willing consisted of Britain, Spain, Italy, Australia, and a cohort of former Soviet bloc nations. Even so, the citizens of the nations that cast their lot with the U.S.A. overwhelmingly opposed the war.

Domestically, it was a different story. A population traumatized by terror threats and shattered economy became easy prey for the saturation bombing of the Bush message that Iraq was a terrorist state linked to al-Qaeda that was only minutes away from launching attacks on America with weapons of mass destruction.

Americans were the victims of an elaborate con job, pelted with a daily barrage of threat inflation, distortions, deceptions and lies, not about tactics or strategy or war plans, but about justifications for war. The lies were aimed not at confusing Saddam's regime, but the American people. By the start of the war, 66 per cent of Americans thought Saddam Hussein was behind 9/11 and 79 per cent thought he was close to having a nuclear weapon.

Of course, the closest Saddam came to possessing a nuke was a rusting gas centrifuge buried for 13 years in the garden of Mahdi Obeidi, a retired Iraqi scientist. Iraq didn't have any functional chemical or biological weapons. In fact, it didn't even possess any SCUD missiles, despite erroneous reports fed by Pentagon PR flacks alleging that it had fired SCUDs into Kuwait.

This charade wouldn't have worked without a gullible or a complicit press corps. Victoria Clarke, who developed the Pentagon plan for embedded reports, put it succinctly a few weeks before the war began: "Media coverage of any future operation will to a large extent shape public perception."

During the Vietnam War, TV images of maimed GIs and napalmed villages suburbanized opposition to the war and helped hasten the U.S. withdrawal. The Bush gang meant to turn the Vietnam phenomenon on its head by using TV as a force to propel the U.S.A. into a war that no one really wanted.

What the Pentagon sought was a new kind of living room war, where instead of photos of mangled soldiers and dead Iraqi kids, they could control the images Americans viewed and to a large extent the content of the stories. By embedding reporters inside selected divisions, Clarke believed the Pentagon could count on the reporters to build relationships with the troops and to feel dependent on them for their own safety. It worked, naturally. One reporter for a national network trembled on camera that the U.S. Army functioned as "our protectors." The late David Bloom of NBC confessed on the air that he was willing to do "anything and everything they can ask of us."

When the Pentagon needed a heroic story, the press obliged. Jessica Lynch became the war's first instant celebrity. Here was a neo-gothic tale of a steely young woman wounded in a fierce battle, captured and tortured by ruthless enemies, and dramatically saved from certain death by a team of selfless rescuers, knights in camo and night-vision goggles. Of course, nearly every detail of her heroic adventure proved to be as fictive and maudlin as any made-for-TV-movie. But the ordeal of Private Lynch, which dominated the news for more than a week, served its purpose: to distract attention from a stalled campaign that was beginning to look at lot riskier than the American public had been hoodwinked into believing.

The Lynch story was fed to the eager press by a Pentagon operation called Combat Camera, the Army network of photographers, videographers and editors that sends 800 photos and 25 video clips a day to the media. The editors at Combat Camera carefully culled the footage to present the Pentagon's montage of the war, eliding such unsettling images as collateral damage, cluster bombs, dead children and U.S. soldiers, napalm strikes and disgruntled troops.

"A lot of our imagery will have a big impact on world opinion," predicted Lt. Jane Larogue, director of Combat Camera in Iraq. She was right. But as the hot war turned into an even hotter occupation, the Pentagon, despite airy rhetoric from occupation supremo Paul Bremer about installing democratic institutions such as a free press, moved to tighten its monopoly on the flow images out of Iraq. First, it tried to shut down Al Jazeera, the Arab news channel. Then the Pentagon intimated that it would like to see all foreign TV news crews banished from Baghdad.

Few newspapers fanned the hysteria about the threat posed by Saddam's weapons of mass destruction as sedulously as did the Washington Post. In the months leading up to the war, the Post's pro-war op-eds outnumbered the anti-war columns by a 3-to-1 margin.

Back in 1988, the Post felt much differently about Saddam and his weapons of mass destruction. When reports trickled out about the gassing of Iranian troops, the Washington Post's editorial page shrugged off the massacres, calling the mass poisonings "a quirk of war."

The Bush team displayed a similar amnesia. When Iraq used chemical weapons in grisly attacks on Iran, the U.S. government not only didn't object, it encouraged Saddam. Anything to punish Iran was the message coming from the White House. Donald Rumsfeld himself was sent as President Ronald Reagan's personal envoy to Baghdad. Rumsfeld conveyed the bold message than an Iraq defeat would be viewed as a "strategic setback for the United States." This sleazy alliance was sealed with a handshake caught on videotape. When CNN reporter Jamie McIntyre replayed the footage for Rumsfeld in the spring of 2003, the secretary of defense snapped, "Where'd you get that? Iraqi television?"

The current crop of Iraq hawks also saw Saddam much differently then. Take the writer Laura Mylroie, sometime colleague of the New York Times' Judy Miller, who persists in peddling the ludicrous conspiracy that Iraq was behind the 1993 bombing of the World Trade Center.

How times have changed! In 1987, Mylroie felt downright cuddly toward Saddam. She wrote an article for the New Republic titled "Back Iraq: Time for a U.S. Tilt in the Mideast," arguing that the U.S. should publicly embrace Saddam's secular regime as a bulwark against the Islamic fundamentalists in Iran. The co-author of this mesmerizing weave of wonkery was none other than Daniel Pipes, perhaps the nation's most bellicose Islamophobe. "The American weapons that Iraq could make good use of include remotely scatterable and anti-personnel mines and counterartillery radar," wrote Mylroie and Pipes. "The United States might also consider upgrading intelligence it is supplying Baghdad."

In the rollout for the war, Mylroie seemed to be everywhere hawking the invasion of Iraq. She would often appear on two or three different networks in the same day. How did the reporter manage this feat? She had help in the form of Eleana Benador, the media placement guru who runs Benador Associates. Born in Peru, Benador parlayed her skills as a linguist into a lucrative career as media relations whiz for the Washington foreign policy elite. She also oversees the Middle East Forum, a fanatically pro-Zionist white paper mill. Her clients include some of the nation's most fervid hawks, including Michael Ledeen, Charles Krauthammer, Al Haig, Max Boot, Daniel Pipes, Richard Perle, and Judy Miller. During the Iraq war, Benador's assignment was to embed this squadron of pro-war zealots into the national media, on talk shows, and op-ed pages.

Benador not only got them the gigs, she also crafted the theme and made sure they all stayed on message. "There are some things, you just have to state them in a different way, in a slightly different way," said Benador. "If not, people get scared." Scared of intentions of their own government.

It could have been different. All of the holes in the Bush administration's gossamer case for war were right there for the mainstream press to expose. Instead, the U.S. press, just like the oil companies, sought to commercialize the Iraq war and profit from the invasions. They didn't want to deal with uncomfortable facts or present voices of dissent.

Nothing sums up this unctuous approach more brazenly than MSNBC's firing of liberal talk show host Phil Donahue on the eve of the war. The network replaced the Donahue Show with a running segment called Countdown: Iraq, featuring the usual nightly coterie of retired generals, security flacks, and other cheerleaders for invasion. The network's executives blamed the cancellation on sagging ratings. In fact, during its run Donahue's show attracted more viewers than any other program on the network. The real reason for the pre-emptive strike on Donahue was spelled out in an internal memo from anxious executives at NBC. Donahue, the memo said, offered "a difficult face for NBC in a time of war. He seems to delight in presenting guests who are anti-war, anti-Bush and skeptical of the administration's motives."

The memo warned that Donahue's show risked tarring MSNBC as an unpatriotic network, "a home for liberal anti-war agenda at the same time that our competitors are waving the flag at every opportunity." So, with scarcely a second thought, the honchos at MSNBC gave Donahue the boot and hoisted the battle flag.

It's war that sells.

There's a helluva caveat, of course. Once you buy it, the merchants of war accept no returns.

This essay is adapted from Grand Theft Pentagon.

[Mar 20, 2018] We read that Vladimir Putin's passport was found three days later at the Scripaal's poisoning scene.

Notable quotes:
"... Just like MH17, or the alleged (but fake) poison gas attacks in Syria, the policy has been to launch an initial barrage of accusations completely unsupported by the slightest shred of evidence – and then drop the matter abruptly, leaving the public with a strong impression of "Russian wickedness" although nothing has actually been proved. ..."
"... Skripal and daughter cheap, convenient, collateral damage for the warmongers. A person trained to handle organic nerve material introduces it into Skripal's car, they go for a morning drive and stop to have a pizza. After pizza, they begin to feel a little queasy. Go sit on a park bench. A passing citizen sees them, calls for medical assistance. Doctor says probably poisoned by toxic agent. Doctor knows it was not highly refined military grade. ..."
"... Car is lifted by straps so as not poison others and hauled to Potent Downs or whatever the Nerve Agent Factory is called. Now it can be doctored to fit the crime and I don't mean the Russians. How am I doing? Got a better tale? ..."
"... Now, I do understand that you – and most Brits – think that you are special. That there is one set of rules for you, and another for the ' others '. You have been conditioned by propaganda to assert this without any shame and to demonise Russia based on decades of half-witted stories (most taken out of context and exaggerated). Why would anyone take you seriously? ..."
"... People who walk around saying that they are exceptional, meaning they are 'Gods', or that they talk 'to God', are generally ignored or kept in an institution. Claiming that you are 'exceptional and special' is the same as claiming that you are divine – that's what it has meant historically. ..."
Mar 20, 2018 | www.unz.com

remo , Website Next New Comment March 20, 2018 at 8:36 am GMT

"Sir, Further to your report ("Poison exposure leaves almost 40 needing treatment", TIMES Mar 14)' may I clarify that no patients have experienced sy