AuthorTopic: Global Systemic Geopolitical Crisis  (Read 61972 times)

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Can Maduro Emulate Castro and Assad to Keep NATO’s Imperialist Hands Off Venezuela?

Feb 16, 2019

Imperial logic I: External crises distract from internal ones

Empires with internal problems tend to create external crises to distract the public opinion and unite their political and economical ruling class into a fictitious nationalistic fervor. The current United States policy of overt regime change in Venezuela, backed entirely by its NATO vassals, follows an evergreen imperial playbook of creating new crises to obscure failures and divisions.

In addition to its overall incompetence, the legal investigations through the Mueller inquiry, and the failure to deliver to its MAGA sycophants their big wall, this has passed unnoticed, and it will never be admitted by US officials or media that both US imperial wars in Afghanistan and Syria are in fact lost. Assad will remain in power, and the US administration has publicly admitted that it was negotiating with the Taliban. The temptation for the ideologues of the empire is too strong not to follow the precept: when you have lost a war, you declare victory and you leave. And next time around, you try to pick a weaker target.



Imperial logic II: A state of war must be permanent

A prime example of this, in recent history, was the way the events of September 11, 2001 were used internally to justify the emergence of a police state using far-reaching legislation such as the Patriot Act, and the creation of the Department of Homeland Security.

Externally, 911 was successfully used by the US to trigger, almost immediately, an invasion of Afghanistan with the entire NATO membership under the hospice of the military alliance’s Article 5, which stipulates that an attack on one member is an attack on all. This was the very first time, since the creation of NATO in 1949, that Article 5 was put into force.

With the US public opinion still largely revengeful, misinformed by media manipulations, and eager to wage war, two years later, in 2003, it was fairly simple for the Bush administration and its neocons to sell the invasion of Iraq as a war of necessity, and not for what it truly was: a war of choice for oil and greater control of the Middle East. Cynically, the aftermath of 9/11/2001 gave the empire and its powerful military-industrial complex two wars for the price of one.



Imperial logic III: People are collateral damage of realpolitiks

Great moral principles of altruistic universal humanitarian concerns are almost never at stake in these instances. They are mainly smoke screens to hide the board of a cold, Machiavellian, and complex chess game where innocent bystanders often perish by the millions. They are the acceptable collateral damage of realpolitik’s grand strategists. Until the collapse of the Soviet Union, the true guiding principle of US imperial realpolitick, and all US foreign policy decisions that derived from it, was to stop the so-called communist domino effect.

Communist domino effect: three simple words for a game that killed millions of innocent people worldwide, first in Korea in the early 1950s, then in Vietnam in the 60s and 70s, and later, under the tutelage of some of the very same criminal architects, in Central and South American countries like in Chile. Now in their golden years, most of these murderous policymakers, like Henry Kissinger, enjoy an active retirement with honors, respect and, unlike their colleague Robert McNamara, not a hint of remorse.

One of these policymakers, a veteran of US imperialism in Central America and also one of the staunchest advocates of Iraq’s invasion in 2003, has made a come back. He is neocon extraordinaire Elliot Abrams. Abrams has been rewarded for his actions in the Iran-Contra affair, El Salvador, and Nicaragua with a nomination as Special Envoy of the Trump administration for Venezuela. In other words, Abrams is in charge of the US-sponsored coup task force against Venezuela’s legitimately elected President Nicolas Maduro.

Damascus, Syria. 15th March 2012 — Loyalties to President Bashar al-Assad attend the rally at the Umayyad Square and hold the Syrian flag and a picture of Bashar al-Assad. — Tens of thousands of pro Assad supporters rallied in Damascus , on the first anniversary of the Syrian uprising .


Defeating imperial logic: The Cuban and Syrian lessons

There are many others examples in history where in a David versus Goliath fight, the little guy who, on paper, did not stand a chance eventually through sheer determination, organization and vast popular support, won on the battlefield. Vietnam is obviously a special case in this regard, as the Vietcong of Ho Chi Minh managed to defeat, almost back to back, the old colonial masters of the French empire in the 1950s, and of course soon thereafter, the US empire.

In the early 1960s, during the Cuban missile crisis, Castro’s days seemed to be numbered. More recently, in Syria, all the lips of the NATO coalition, Israel and Gulf State allies were chanting in unison that as a precondition for resolving the Syrian crisis, “Assad must go!” By 2017, however, some coalition members such as Qatar, France and Germany were not so adamant about the “Assad must go” mantra. Not only did Bashar al-Assad not go, but also, as matter of fact, he is regaining control of his entire country, on his own terms.


Castro outsmarted the empire’s CIA hitmen 600 times

Nicolas Maduro’s predecessor and mentor, Hugo Chavez, had in Fidel Castro a source of inspiration and the guidance of a father figure. Chavez, like other neo-Marxists, looked up to Fidel for leading a successful revolution, through military action, which had toppled the corrupt regime of Fulgencio Batista. This regime was not only a docile servant of the US government but was also directly associated with the Mafia’s criminal activities in Cuba in the era of Lucky Luciano and Meyer Lansky. With Batista’s complicity, American gangsters had turned Cuba into a gambling and prostitution paradise where the US’ unscrupulous rich went to play. Castro shut down the bordello that had become Cuba and proudly rebuilt his island, and he consciously set out to transform Cuba slowly and steadily into a socialist country.

Needless to say, the shutdown of their depraved and lucrative tropical paradise was unacceptable for the US empire’s ruling elites. Against all odds, the Cuban communist leader managed to defy one US administration after another, and without compromise remained at the helm of the Cuban revolution. It was not for a lack of trying either to invade Cuba, as in the Bay of Pigs botched invasion episode, or to cook up countless assassination attempts on Castro’s person. Starting almost immediately after he took power in 1959, Castro was the target of CIA assassination attempts. From the Kennedy era all the way to the Clinton administrations, Fidel Castro survived more than 600 plots to kill him. Some of the attempts involved collaborations of the Mafia with the CIA. Castro once said, “if surviving assassination attempts were an Olympic event, I would win the gold medal!” It has to be added that, at least so far, Fidel Castro has also won a posthumous gold medal for ensuring the legacy of the Cuban revolution.



Assad: military might and striking the right alliances

Almost eight years ago, some people in quiet mansions, regal palaces or discrete offices in Washington, Riyadh, Doha, London, Paris, and Tel Aviv or undisclosed locations came up with what appeared to be an excellent plan. They would hijack some of the genuine energy of the Arab Spring then quickly sponsor it with a huge arsenal, while hiring some supposed good Djihadists soldiers-of-fortune as the main muscle to get rid of the uncooperative Bashar al-Assad. In what I called in May 2013, an “unholy alliance to wreck and exploit,” the Western and Gulf States coalition to topple Assad was born. In the US, the late Senator John McCain was one of the cheerleaders of the so-called Free Syrian Army.

Eight years later, with Syria in ruins, 350,000 people dead, around 4.5 million refugees still scattered principally in Jordan, Turkey and Lebanon, Assad has prevailed in a bittersweet victory, considering that his country has been wrecked as a battleground of proxy wars. Bashar al-Assad did not win on his own. He managed to retain complete loyalty from the Syrian army during the past eight gruesome years. Assad also could count on the military involvement of dependable allies Hezbollah in Lebanon and Iran and, of course, a critical impact of Russia once Putin’s administration decided to commit military assets and troops.



Maduro can keep Uncle Sam’s hands off Venezuela

One can only hope that Venezuela’s US-sponsored coup attempt using the subterfuge of a phony revolution does not follow the track of Syria in terms of the mayhem. However, the analogies are numerous between Maduro’s situation today and that of Assad in 2011. First, Maduro has at his disposal a reasonably well-equipped military as well as the Chavista militia. To defeat the unfolding coup attempt, the loyalty of the armed forces has to be ironclad. Second, just as Assad has done, Maduro must work to cultivate, in pragmatic ways, both regional and worldwide alliances.



Cuba will do a lot to help and might turn out to be Maduro’s Hezbollah. But will Mexico, Bolivia, and Uruguay go beyond diplomatic posturing in their solidarity with Maduro against NATO’s imperialism? How involved and how far, either economically or, in a worse case scenario, militarily are Russia, China, Turkey, and Iran willing to go? In geopolitics, unlike diplomacy, only actions talk. Venezuela has a massive bargaining chip in the form of the mostly untapped biggest oil reserve in the world. This is Maduro’s ultimate ace in this game, and it should be used shrewdly. In realpolitiks, friends might be temporary, and they always want something. This is not an altruistic environment.



ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Editor’s Notes: Gilbert Mercier is the author of The Orwellian Empire. Composite one by Lance Page; photograph two from the archive of Jakob Reimann; photograph three from the archive of Dawei Ding; photograph four from the archive of Lezumbalaberenjena; photograph five from the archive of Globovision; and photograph seven from the archive of Ryota Nakanishi
"It is difficult to write a paradiso when all the superficial indications are that you ought to write an apocalypse." -Ezra Pound

Offline RE

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💰 How America’s Dictatorship Works
« Reply #706 on: February 19, 2019, 02:33:51 AM »
https://www.greanvillepost.com/2019/02/18/how-americas-dictatorship-works/

How America’s Dictatorship Works

How America’s Dictatorship Works


 

BE SURE TO PASS OUR ARTICLES ON TO KIN, FRIENDS AND COLLEAGUES

Sheldon Adelson (DonkeyHotey. (CC BY-SA 2.0) •. ERIC ZUESSE | 16.02.2019 | WORLD / AMERICAS


Trump could not have become America’s President if he had not won the “vote” of his nation’s second-largest political donor in 2016, casinos-owner Sheldon Adelson.

In publicly recorded donations, as of 25 December 2018, Adelson and his wife donated $82,522,800 to Republican candidates in 2016, and this amount doesn’t include any of the secret money. Of that sum, it’s virtually impossible to find out how much went specifically to Trump’s campaign for President, but, as of 9 May 2017, the Adelsons were publicly recorded as having donated $20.4 million to Trump’s campaign. Their impact on the Presidential contest was actually much bigger than that, however, because even the Adelsons’ non-Trump-campaign donations went to the Republican Party, and the rest went to Republican pro-Trump candidates, and the rest went to Republican PACS — and, so, a large percentage (if not all) of that approximately $60 million non-Trump-campaign political expenditure by the Adelsons was boosting Trump’s Presidential vote.

The second-largest Republican donor in 2016 was the hedge fund manager Paul Singer, at $26,114,653. It was less than a third, 31.6%, as large as the Adelsons’ contribution. Singer is the libertarian who proudly invests in weak entities that have been sucked dry by the aristocracy and who almost always extracts thereby, in the courts, far larger returns-on-investment than do other investors, who have simply settled to take a haircut on their failing high-interest-rate loans to that given weak entity. Singer hires the rest of his family to run his asset-stripping firm, which is named after his own middle name, “Elliott Advisors,” and he despises any wealthy person who won’t (like he does) fight tooth-and-nail to extract, from any weak entity, everything that can possibly be stripped from it. His Elliott Advisors is called a “vulture fund,” but that’s an insult to vultures, who instead eat corpses. They don’t actually attack and rip apart vulnerable struggling animals, like Singer’s operation does.

So, that’s the top two, on the Republican Party side.

On the Democratic Party side, the largest 2016 donor was the largest of all political donors in 2016, the hedge fund manager Thomas Steyer, $91,069,795. The second-largest was hedge fund manager Donald S. Sussman, $41,841,000. Both of them supported Hillary Clinton against Bernie Sanders, and then against Donald Trump.

As of 23 January 2019, the record shows that Trump received $46,873,083 in donations larger than $200, and $86,749,927 in donations smaller than $200. Plus, he got $144,764 in PAC contributions. Hillary Clinton received $300,111,643 in over-$200 donations, and $105,552,584 in under-$200 donations. Plus, she got $1,785,190 in PAC donations. She received 6.4 times as much in $200+ donations as Trump did. She received 1.2 times as much in under-$200 donations as he did. Clearly, billionaires strongly preferred Hillary. So, it’s understandable why not only America’s Democratic Party billionaires but also many of America’s Republican Party billionaires want President Trump to become replaced ASAP by his V.P., President Pence, who has a solid record of doing only whatever his big donors want him to do. For them, the wet dream would be a 2020 contest between Mike Pence or a clone, versus Hillary Clinton or a clone (such as Joe Biden or Beto O’Rourke). That would be their standard fixed game, America’s heads-I-win-tails-you-lose ‘democracy’.

On 18 January 2018 was reported that, “Trump pulled in $107 million in individual contributions, nearly doubling President Barack Obama’s 2009 record of $53 million.” However, in both of those cases, the figures which were being compared were actually donations to fund the inaugural festivities, not the actual campaigns. But Adelson led there, too: “Casino magnate Sheldon Adelson was [the] most generous [donor], giving $5 million to the inaugural committee.” The second-biggest donor to that was Hushang Ansary of Stewart & Stevenson, at $2 million. He had previously been the CEO of the National Iranian Oil Company until the CIA-appointed dictator, the brutal and widely hated Shah, was overthrown in 1979 and replaced by Iran’s now theocratically overseen limited democracy. The US aristocracy, whose CIA had overthrown Iran’s popular and democratically elected Prime Minister in 1953, installed the Shah to replace that elected head-of-state, and they then denationalized and privatized Iran’s oil company, so as to cut America’s aristocrats in on Iran’s oil. Basically, America’s aristocracy stole Iran in 1953, and Iranians grabbed their country back in 1979, and USbillionaires have been trying to get it back ever since. Ansary’s net worth is estimated at “over $2 billion,” and, “By the 1970s, the CIA considered Ansary to be one of seventeen members of ‘the Shah’s Inner Circle’ and he was one of the Shah’s top two choices to succeed Amir Abbas Hoveyda as Prime Minister.” But, that just happened to be the time when the Shah became replaced in an authentic revolution against America’s dictatorship. Iran’s revolution produced the country’s current partially democratic Government. So, this would-be US stooge Ansary fled to America, which had been Iran’s master during 1953-79, and he was welcomed with open arms by Amerca’s and allied aristocracies.


Other than the Adelsons, the chief proponents of regime-change in Iran since 1979 are the US-billionaires-controlled CIA, and ‘news’-media, and Government, and the Shah’s family, and the Saud family, and Israel’s apartheid regime headed by the Adelsons’ protégé in Israel, Netanyahu. America’s billionaires want Iran back, and the CIA represents them (the Deep State) — not the American public — precisely as it did in 1953, when the CIA seized Iran for America’s billionaires.

In the current election-cycle, 2018, the Adelsons have thus far invested $123,208,200, all in Republicans, and this tops the entire field. The second-largest political investor, for this cycle, is the former Republican Mayor of NYC, Michael Bloomberg, at $90,282,515, all to Democrats. Is he a Republican, or is he a Democrat? Does it actually make any difference? He is consistently a promoter of Wall Street. The third-largest donor now is Tom Steyer, at $70,743,864, all to Democrats. The fourth-largest is a Wisconsin libertarian-conservative billionaire, Richard Uihlein, at $39,756,996. Back on 19 March 2018, Politico reported that “Uihlein and his wife, Elizabeth, are currently the biggest Republican donors of the 2018 midterm elections, having given $21 million to candidates for federal office and super PACs that will support them. And that doesn’t include their funding of state candidates.” On 1 October 2016, International Business Times had listed the top ten donors to each of the two Parties, and the Uihleins at that time were #4 on the Republican side, at $21.5 million.

Of course, all of the top donors are among the 585 US billionaires, and therefore they can afford to spend lots on the Republican and/or Democratic nominees. Open Secrets reported on 31 March 2017 that “Of the world’s 100 richest billionaires, 36 are US citizens and thus eligible to donate to candidates and other political committees here. OpenSecrets Blog found that 30 of those [36] [or five sixths of the total 36 wealthiest Americans] actually did so, contributing a total of $184.4 million — with 58 percent [of their money] going to Republican efforts.” Democratic Party nominees thus got 42%; and, though it’s not as much as Republican ones get, it’s usually enough so that if a Democrat becomes elected, that person too will be controlled by billionaires.

For example, in the West Virginia Democratic Presidential primary in 2016, Bernie Sanders won all 55 counties in the state but that state’s delegation to the Democratic National Convention handed 19 of the state’s 37 votes at the Convention to his opponent, Hillary Clinton, who got more money from billionaires than all other US Presidential candidates combined. The millions of Democrats who voted for Hillary Clinton were voting for the billionaires’ favorite, and she and her DNC stole the Party’s nomination from Sanders, who was the nation’s most-preferred Presidential candidate in 2016; and, yet, most of those voters still happily voted, yet again, for her, in the general election — as if she hadn’t practically destroyed the Party by prostituting it to its billionaires even more than Obama had already done. Of course, she ran against Trump, and, for once, the billionaires were shocked to find that their enormous investment in a candidate had been for naught. That’s how incompetent she was. But they still kept control over both of the political Parties, and the Sanders choice to head the DNC (the Democratic National Committee, the Democratic Party itself) lost out to the Obama-Clinton choice, so that today’s Democratic Party is still the same: winning is less important to them than serving their top donors is.

This means that America’s winners of federal elections represent almost entirely America’s 585 billionaires, and not the 328,335,647Americans (as of noon on 23 January 2019). Of course, there is a slight crossover of interests between those two economic classes, since 0.000002 of those 328,335,647, or 0.0002% of them, are billionaires. However, if 0.0002% of federal office-holders represent the public, and the remaining 99.9998% represent the billionaires, then is that actually a bipartisan Government? If instead 99.9998% represented 328,335,062 Americans, and 0.0002% represented the 585 billionaires; then, that, too, wouldn’t be bipartisan, but would it be a democratic (small “d”) government? So, America is not a democracy (regardless of whether it’s bipartisan); it is instead an aristocracy, just like ancient France was, and the British empire, etc. The rest of America’s population (the 328,335,062 other Americans) are mere subjects, though we are officially called ‘citizens’, of this actual aristocracy.

The same is true in Israel, the land that the Adelsons (the individuals who largely control America) are so especially devoted to. On 8 November 2016, Israel’s pro-Hillary-Clinton and anti-Netanyahu Ha’aretz newspaper headlined “The Collapsing Political Triangle Linking Adelson, Netanyahu and Trump”, and reported that Ha’aretz’s bane and top competitor was the freely distributed daily Israeli newspaper, Israel Hayom, and:

Israel Hayom was founded by Adelson nine years ago, in order to give Netanyahu – who has been rather harshly treated by the Israeli media throughout his political career – a friendly newspaper. Under Israeli law, the total sum an individual can donate to a politician or party is very limited, and corporate donations are not allowed. Israel Hayom has been a convenient loophole, allowing Adelson to invest the sort of money he normally gives American politicians on Netanyahu’s behalf. It has no business model and carries far fewer ads than most daily newspapers. While the privately owned company does not publish financial reports, industry insiders estimate that Adelson must spend around $50 million annually on the large team of journalists and the printing and distribution operations.

Distributed for free, in hundreds of thousands of copies the length and breadth of the country, Israel Hayom … clings slavishly to the line from Netanyahu’s office – praising him and his family to the heavens while smearing his political rivals, both on the left and the right.

A billionaire can afford to use his or her ‘news’-media in lieu of political campaign donations. Lots of billionaires do that. They don’t need to make direct political donations. And ‘making money’ by owning a ‘news’-medium can even be irrelevant, for them. Instead, owning an important ’news’-medium can be, for them, just another way, or sometimes their only way, to buy control over the government. It certainly works. It’s very effective in Israel.

Adelson is #14 on the 2018 Forbes 400 list of wealthiest Americans, all having net worths of $2.1 billion or more, his being $38.4 billion, just one-third as large as that of Jeff Bezos. Bezos is the owner of around 15% of Amazon Corporation, whose profits are derived almost entirely from the Amazon Web Services that are supplied to the US Pentagon, NSA, and CIA. So, he’s basically a ‘defense’ contractor. Bezos’s directly owned Washington Post is one of America’s leading neoconservative and neoliberal, or pro-invasion and pro-Democratic Party, media; and, so, his personal ownership of that newspaper is much like his owning a one-person national political PAC to promote whatever national policies will increase his fortune. The more that goes to the military and the less that goes to everything else, the wealthier he will become. His newspaper pumps the ‘national security threats’ to America.

Adelson controls Israel’s Government. Whereas he might be a major force in America’s Government, that’s actually much more controlled by the world’s wealthiest person, the only trillionaire, the King of Saudi Arabia. He has enough wealth so that he can buy almost anybody he wants — and he does, through his numerous agents. But, of course, both Israel’s Government and Saudi Arabia’s Government hate Iran’s Government at least as much as America’s Government does. In fact, if Russia’s Government weren’t likely to defend Iran’s Government from an invasion, then probably Iran would already have been invaded. Supporters of America’s Government are supporters of a world government by America’s billionaires, because that’s what the US Government, in all of its international functions (military, diplomatic, etc.) actually represents: it’s America’s global dictatorship. They throw crumbs to America’s poor so as to make it a ‘two-party’ and not merely a ‘one-party’ government and so that one of the Parties can call itself ‘the Democratic Party’, but America’s is actually a one-party government, and it represents only the very wealthiest, in both Parties. The aristocracy’s two separate party-organizations compete against each other. But their real audience is the aristocracy’s dollars, not the public’s voters. This “two-Party” dictatorship (by the aristocracy) is a different governing model than in China and some other countries.

The great investigative journalist Wayne Madsen headlined on January 24th “Trump Recognition of Rival Venezuelan Government Will Set Off a Diplomatic Avalanche” and he reported the possibility of a war developing between the US and Russia over America’s aggression against Venezuela. US media even have pretended that the US Government isn’t the one that customarily perpetrates coups in Latin America, and pretended that Russia’s and Cuba’s Governments are simply blocking ‘democracy’ from blossoming in Venezuela. On January 24th, Middle East Eye reported that Morgan Stanley’s CEO James Gorman had just told the World Economic Forum, in Davos, that the torture-murder of Saudi Crown Prince Salman’s critic and Washington Post columnist Jamal Khashoggi was “unacceptable,” “But what do you do? What part do you play in the process of economic and social change?” and the report continued: “Gorman said he did not judge any country’s attempts to root out corruption,” and Gorman and a French tycoon joined in throwing their “weight behind Riyadh’s economic and social direction, by saying, ‘it is quite difficult and brave what the kingdom is doing’,” by its ‘reforms’. It was all being done to ‘root out corruption, and to spread democracy’. Sure. There’s “a sucker born every minute,” except now it’s every second. That seems to be the main way to win votes.

On January 26th, Trump appointed the fascist Elliott Abrams to lead this ‘democratization of Venezuela’, by overthrowing and replacing the elected President by the second-in-line-of succession (comparable in Venezuela to removing Trump and skipping over the Vice President and appointing Nancy Pelosi as America’s President, and also violating the Venezuelan Constitution’s requirement that the Supreme Judicial Trbunal must first approve before there can be ANY change of the President without an election by the voters). It’s clearly another US coup that is being attempted here. Trump, by international dictat, says that this Venezuelan traitor whom the US claims to be installing is now officially recognized by the US Government to be the President of Venezuela. Bloomberg News reported that Abrams would join Trump’s neocon Secretary of State on January 26that the UN to lobby there for the UN to authorize Trump’s intended Venezuelan coup. The EU seemed strongly inclined to follow America’s lead. On the decisive UN body, the Permanent Security Council, of China, France, Russia, UK, and US, the US position was backed by three: US, France, and UK. Russia and China were opposed. In the EU, only France, Germany, Spain, and UK, came out immediately backing the US position. On January 25th, Russia’s Tass news agency was the first to report on the delicate strategic situation inside Venezuela. It sounded like the buildup to Obama’s successful coup in Ukraine in February 2014, but in Venezuela and under Trump. In fact, at least two commentaors other than I have noted the apparent similarities: Whitney Webb at “Washington Follows Ukraine, Syria Roadmap in Push for Venezuela Regime Change” and RT at “‘Venezuela gets its Maidan’: Ukrainian minister makes connection between regime change ops”.

Abrams’s career has been devoted to “regime-change,” and is as unapologetic about it as is John Bolton. Also like Bolton, he’s an impassioned supporter of Jewish apartheid. He wrote in his 1997 book Faith or Fear, that “Outside the land of Israel, there can be no doubt that Jews, faithful to the covenant between God and Abraham, are to stand apart from the nation in which they live. It is the very nature of being Jewish to be apart — except in Israel — from the rest of the population.” Israel is, in this and the view of many billionaires, the whole world’s ghetto, and ‘real’ Jews don’t belong anywhere else than there. And, according to that, nobody else does belong there, except people who accept being ruled by Jewish Law — the Torah. So, on 25 June 2001, George W. Bush, as the main representative of America’s billionaires, made Abrams the Special Assistant to the President and Senior Director for Democracy, Human Rights, and International Operations at the National Security Council. Of course, Abrams was gung-ho for Americans to conquer Iraq, because Iraqis didn’t like Israel. And the current US President hires that same agent of Israel, Abrams, now to sell internationally America’s current coup to grab Venezuela for America’s billionaires. Abrams, for years, had been courting Trump’s favor by having declined to include himself among the many Republican neoconservatives, both Jewish and non-Jewish, who endorsed Hillary Clinton for President. He thereby has now won his new job, on the real-world sequel to The Apprentice, which is known as President Trump’s Administration. Another such winner, of course, is John Bolton, who likewise had declined to endorse Hillary.

Perhaps the US regime thinks that testing the resolve of Russia’s Government, regarding Venezuela, would be less dangerous than testing it over the issue of Iran. But Big Brother says that this imposition of America’s corruption is instead merely a part of rooting out corruption and spreading democracy and human rights, throughout the world.

The US has managed to get Venezuela in play, to control again. Some American billionaires think it’s a big prize, which must be retaken. The largest oil-and-gas producers — and with the highest reserves of oil-and-gas in the ground — right now, happen to be Saudi Arabia, Iran, Qatar, Russia, Venezuela, and US So, for example, Venezuela is a much bigger prize than Brazil.

All of those countries have an interest in denying the existence of human-produced global warming, and in selling as much of their product as quickly as possible before the world turns away from fossil fuels altogether. High-tech doesn’t drive today’s big-power competition nearly so much as does the fossil-fuels competition — to sell as much of it as they can, as fast as they can. The result of this competition could turn out to be a nuclear winter that produces a lifeless planet and thus prevents the planet from becoming lifeless more slowly from global burnout — the alternative outcome, which would be produced by the burnt fossil fuels themselves. Either way, the future looks bleak, no matter what high-tech produces (unless high-tech produces quickly a total replacement of fossil fuels, and, in the process, bankrupts many of the billionaires who are so active in the current desperate and psychopathic global competition).

This is what happens when wealth worldwide is so unequally distributed that the “World’s Richest 0.7% Own 13.67 Times as Much as World’s Poorest 68.7%”. According to economic theory (which has always been written by agents for the aristocracy), the distribution of wealth is irrelevant. This belief was formalized by a key founder of today’s mathematized economic theory, Vilfredo Pareto, who, for example, in his main work, the 1912 Trattato di Sociologia Generale, wrote (# 2135), that, though “the lover of equality will assign a high coefficient to the utility of the lower classes and get a point of equilibrium very close to the equalitarian condition, there is no criterion save sentiment for choosing between the one [such equality of wealth] and the other [a single person — whom he called “superman” — owning everything].” The article on Pareto in the CIA’s Wikipedia doesn’t even so much as mention this central feature of Pareto’s thinking, the feature that’s foundational in all of the theory of “welfare” in economics. Pareto was also the main theoretician of fascism, and the teacher of Mussolini. This belief is at the foundation of capitalism as we know it, and as it has been in economic theory ever since, actually, the 1760s. Pareto didn’t invent it; he merely mathematized it.

So, we’ve long been in 1984, or at least building toward it. But US-allied billionaires wrote this particular version of it; George Orwell didn’t. And it’s not a novel. It’s the real thing. And it is now becoming increasingly desperate.

If, in recognizing this, you feel like a hog on a factory-farm, then you’ve got the general idea of this reality. It’s the problem that the public faces. But the publics in the US and its allied regimes are far less miserable than the publics in the countries that the US and its allied regimes are trying to take over — the targeted countries (such as Syria). To describe any realistic solution to this systematic global exploitation would require an entire book, at the very least — no mere article, such as here. The aristocracy anywhere wouldn’t publish such a book. Nobody would likely derive any significant income from writing it. That’s part of the reality, which such a book would be describing.

However, a key part of this reality is that for the billionaires — the people who control international corporations or corporations that even are aspiring to grow beyond their national market — their nation’s international policies are even more important to them than its domestic affairs (such as the toxic water in Flint, Michigan; or single-payer health insurance — matters that are relatively unimportant to billionaires), and, therefore, the most-censored and least-honestly reported realities on the part of the aristocracy’s ‘news’-media are the international ones. And, so, this is the field where there is the most lying, such as about “Saddam’s WMD,” and about all foreign countries. However, when a person is in an aristocracy’s military, deception of that person is even more essential, especially in the lower ranks, the troops, because killing and dying for one’s aristocracy is far less attractive than killing or dying in order honestly to serve and protect an authentic democracy. Propagandizing for the myth that the nation is a democracy is therefore extremely important in any aristocracy. Perhaps this is the reason why, in the United States, the military is consistently the institution that leads above all others in the public’s respect. It’s especially necessary to do that, in the nation that President Barack Obama repeatedly said is “the one indispensable nation”. This, of course, means that every other nation is “dispensable.” Any imperial nation, at least since ancient Rome, claimed the same thing, and invaded more nations than any other in the world when it was the leading imperial nation, because this is what it means to be an empire, or even to aspire to being one: imposing that given nation’s will upon other nations — colonies, vassal states, or whatever they are called. When soldiers know that they are the invaders, not the actual defenders, their motivation to kill and die is enormously reduced. This is the main reason why the ‘news’-media in an imperial nation need to lie constantly to their public. If a news-reporting organization doesn’t do that, no aristocrat will even buy it. And virtually none will advertise in it or otherwise donate to it. It will be doomed to remain very small and unprofitable in every way (because the “World’s Richest 0.7% Own 13.67 Times as Much as World’s Poorest 68.7%”). Billionaires donate to ‘news’-organizations that might report accurately about domestic US problems, but not to ones that report accurately about international affairs, especially about important international affairs. Even liberal ‘news’-media are neoconservative, or favorable toward American invasions and coups. In order to be a significant player in the ‘news’-business in the United States, one has to be.

So: this is how America’s dictatorship works. This is not America’s exceptionalism: it is America’s ordinariness. America’s Founders had wanted to produce something not just exceptional but unique in its time: a democratic republic. But what now exists here is instead a dictatorial global empire, and it constitutes the biggest threat to the very existence of the United Nations ever since that body’s founding in 1945. If that body accepts as constituting the leader of Venezuela the person that America’s President declares to be Venezuela’s leader, then the UN is effectively dead. This would be an immense breakthrough for all of the US regime’s billionaires, both domestically and throughout its allied countries (such as in France, Germany, Spain, and UK). It would be historic, if they win. It would be extremely grim, and then the UN would immediately need to be replaced. The US and its allies would refuse to join the replacement organization. That organization would then authorize economic sanctions against the US and its allies. These will be reciprocated. The world would break clearly into two trading-blocs. In a sense, the UN’s capitulation to the US on this matter would create another world war, WW III. It would be even worse than when Neville Chamberlain accepted Hitler’s offer regarding the Sudetenland. We’d be back to the start of WW II, with no lessons learned since then. And with nuclear weapons.

 


 

About the author

EricZuesseERIC ZUESSE, Senior Contributing Editor •  Investigative historian Eric Zuesse is the author, most recently, of They’re Not Even Close: The Democratic vs. Republican Economic Records, 1910-2010, and of CHRIST’S VENTRILOQUISTS: The Event that Created Christianity. Besides TGP, his reports and historical analyses are published on many leading current events and political sites, including The Saker, Huffpost, Oped News, and others.

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Inside Trump’s Two-Year War on the Investigations Encircling Him
« Reply #707 on: February 19, 2019, 11:16:20 AM »
This NYT story breaking in this hour.

Intimidation, Pressure and Humiliation: Inside Trump’s Two-Year War on the Investigations Encircling Him
Trump’s efforts have exposed him to accusations of obstruction of justice as Robert S. Mueller II, the special counsel, finishes his work.



President Trump entering the House Chamber to deliver his State of the Union speech earlier this month.CreditCreditDoug Mills/The New York Times

WASHINGTON — As federal prosecutors in Manhattan gathered evidence late last year about President Trump’s role in silencing women with hush payments during the 2016 campaign, Mr. Trump called Matthew G. Whitaker, his newly installed attorney general, with a question. He asked whether Geoffrey S. Berman, the United States attorney for the Southern District of New York and a Trump ally, could be put in charge of the widening investigation, according to several American officials with direct knowledge of the call.

Mr. Whitaker, who had privately told associates that part of his role at the Justice Department was to “jump on a grenade” for the president, knew he could not put Mr. Berman in charge, since Mr. Berman had already recused himself from the investigation. The president soon soured on Mr. Whitaker, as he often does with his aides, and complained about his inability to pull levers at the Justice Department that could make the president’s many legal problems go away.

Trying to install a perceived loyalist atop a widening inquiry is a familiar tactic for Mr. Trump, who has been struggling to beat back the investigations that have consumed his presidency. His efforts have exposed him to accusations of obstruction of justice as Robert S. Mueller III, the special counsel, finishes his work investigating Russian interference in the 2016 election.

Mr. Trump’s public war on the inquiry has gone on long enough that it is no longer shocking. Mr. Trump rages almost daily to his 58 million Twitter followers that Mr. Mueller is on a “witch hunt” and has adopted the language of Mafia bosses by calling those who cooperate with the special counsel “rats.” His lawyer talks openly about a strategy to smear and discredit the special counsel investigation. The president’s allies in Congress and the conservative media warn of an insidious plot inside the Justice Department and the F.B.I. to subvert a democratically elected president.

An examination by The New York Times reveals the extent of an even more sustained, more secretive assault by Mr. Trump on the machinery of federal law enforcement. Interviews with dozens of current and former government officials and others close to Mr. Trump, as well as a review of confidential White House documents, reveal numerous unreported episodes in a two-year drama.

Matthew G. Whitaker, the former acting attorney general, is now under scrutiny by the House for possible perjury.CreditTom Brenner for The New York Times

White House lawyers wrote a confidential memo expressing concern about the president’s staff peddling misleading information in public about the firing of Michael T. Flynn, the Trump administration’s first national security adviser. Mr. Trump had private conversations with Republican lawmakers about a campaign to attack the Mueller investigation. And, there was the episode when he asked his attorney general about putting Mr. Berman in charge of the Manhattan investigation.

Mr. Whitaker, who earlier this month told a congressional committee that Mr. Trump had never pressured him over the various investigations, is now under scrutiny by House Democrats for possible perjury.

A Justice Department spokeswoman said that the White House had not asked Mr. Whitaker to interfere in the investigations. “Under oath to the House Judiciary Committee, then Acting Attorney General Whitaker stated that ‘at no time has the White House asked for nor have I provided any promises or commitments concerning the special counsel’s investigation or any other investigation,’” said the spokeswoman, Kerri Kupec. “Mr. Whitaker stands by his testimony.”

"It is difficult to write a paradiso when all the superficial indications are that you ought to write an apocalypse." -Ezra Pound

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🌎 The Empire: Now or Never
« Reply #708 on: February 24, 2019, 01:44:26 AM »
https://www.greanvillepost.com/2019/02/22/the-empire-now-or-never/

The Empire: Now or Never


HELP ENLIGHTEN YOUR FELLOWS. BE SURE TO PASS THIS ON. SURVIVAL DEPENDS ON IT.

By FRED REED • FEBRUARY 20, 2019 Crossposted with Unz Review

American imperialism has always been brutal but it has learned to hide its hideousness behind an elaborate facade of totalitarian propaganda.


Many people I talk to seem to think American foreign policy has something to do with democracy, human rights, national security, or maybe terrorism or freedom, or niceness, or something. It is a curious belief, Washington being interested in all of them. Other people are simply puzzled, seeing no pattern in America’s international behavior. Really, the explanation is simple.

The reason of course is empire, the desire for which is an ancient and innate part of mankind’s cerebral package. Parthian, Roman, Aztec, Hapsburg, British. It never stops.

When the Soviet Empire collapsed, America appeared poised to establish the first truly world empire. The developed countries were American vassals in effect if not in name, many of them occupied by American troops: Among others, Europe, Canada, Japan, South Korea, Latin America, Saudi Arabia, and Australia. The US had by far the dominant economy and the biggest military, controlled the IMF, NATO, the dollar, SWIFT, and enjoyed technological superiority.. Russia was in chaos, China a distant smudge on the horizon.

Powerful groups in Washington, such as PNAC, began angling toward aggrandizement, but the real lunge came with the attack on Iraq. Current foreign policy openly focuses on dominating the planet. The astonishing thing is that some people don’t notice.

The world runs on oil. Controlling the supply conveys almost absolute power over those countries that do not have their own. (For example, the Japanese would soon be eating each other if their oil were cut off.) Saudi Arabia is an American protectorate,and, having seen what happened to Iraq, knows that it can be conquered in short order if it gets out of line. The U. S. Navy could easily block tanker traffic from Hormuz to any or all countries.

A major purpose of the destruction of Iraq was to get control of its oil and put American forces on the border of Iran, another oil power. The current attempt to starve the Iranians aims at installing a American puppet government. The ongoing coup in Venezuela seeks control of another vast oil reserve. It will also serve to intimidate the rest of Latin America by showing what can happen to any country that defies Washington. Why are American troops in Nigeria? Guess what Nigeria has.

Note that Iraq and Iran, in addition to their oil, are geostrategically vital to a world empire. Further, the immensely powerful Jewish presence in the US supports the Mid-East wars for its own purposes. So, of course, does the arms industry. All God’s chillun love the Empire.

For the Greater Empire to prevail, Russia and China, the latter a surprise contender, must be neutralized. Thus the campaign to crush Russia by economic sanctions. At the same time Washington pushes NATO, its sepoy militia, ever eastward, wants to station US forces in Poland, plans a Space Command whose only purpose is to intimidate or bankrupt Russia, drops out of the INF Treaty for the same reasons, and seeks to prevent commercial relations between Russia and the European vassals (e.g., Nordstream II).

China of course is the key obstacle to expanding the Empire. Ergo the trade war. America has to stop China’s economic and technological progress, and stop it now, as it will not get another chance.

The present moment is an Imperial crunch point. America cannot compete with China commercially or, increasingly, in technology. Washington knows it. Beijing’s advantages are too great: A huge and growing domestic market, a far larger population of very bright people, a for-profit economy that allows heavy investment both internally and abroad, a stable government that can plan well into the future.

America? It’s power is more fragile than it may seem. The United States once dominated economically by making better products at better prices, ran a large trade surplus, and barely had competitors. Today it has deindustrialized, runs a trade deficit with almost everybody, carries an astronomical and uncontrolled national debt, and makes few things that the world can’t get elsewhere, often at lower cost.

Increasingly America’s commercial power is as a consumer, not a producer. Washington tells other countries, “If you don’t do as we say, we won’t buy your stuff.” The indispensable country is an indispensable market. With few and diminishing (though important) exceptions, if it stopped selling things to China, China would barely notice, but if it stopped buying, the Chinese economy would wither. Tariffs, note, are just a way of not buying China’s stuff.

Since the profligate American market is vital to other countries, they often do as ordered. But Asian markets grow. So do Asian industries.

As America’s competitiveness declines, Washington resorts to strong-arm tactics. It has no choice. A prime example is the 5G internet, a Very Big Deal, in which Huawei holds the lead. Unable to provide a better product at a better price, Washington forbids the vassals to deal with Huawei–on pain of not buying their stuff. In what appears to be desperation, the Exceptional Nation has actually made a servile Canada arrest the daughter of Huawei’s founder.

The tide runs against the Empire. A couple of decades ago, the idea that China could compete technologically with America would have seemed preposterous. Today China advances at startling speed. It is neck and neck with the US in supercomputers, launches moonlanders, leads in 5G internet, does leading work in genetics, designs world-class chipsets (e.g., the Kirin 980 and 920) and smartphones. Another decade or two of this and America will be at the trailing edge.

The American decline is largely self-inflicted. The US chooses its government by popularity contests among provincial lawyers rather than by competence. American education deteriorates under assault by social-justice faddists. Washington spends on the military instead of infrastructure and the economy. It is politically chaotic, its policies changing with every new administration.

The first rule of empire is, “Don’t let your enemies unite.” Instead, Washington has pushed Russia, China, and Iran into a coalition against the Empire. It might have been brighter to have integrated Iran tightly into the Euro-American econosphere, but Israel would not have let America do this. The same approach would have worked with Russia, racially closer to Europe than China and acutely aware of having vast empty Siberia bordering an overpopulated China. By imposing sanctions of adversaries and allies alike, Washington promotes dedollarization and recognition that America is not an ally but a master.

It is now or never. If America’s great but declining power does not subjugate the rest of the world quickly, the rising powers of Asia will swamp it. Even India grows. Either sanctions subdue the world, or Washington starts a world war. Or America becomes just another country.

To paraphrase a great political thinker, “It’s the Empire, Stupid.”

ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Fred, a keyboard mercenary with a disorganized past, has worked on staff for Army Times, The Washingtonian, Soldier of Fortune, Federal Computer Week, and The Washington Times. He has been published in Playboy, Soldier of Fortune, The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post, Harper’s, National Review, Signal, Air&Space, and suchlike. He has worked as a police writer, technology editor, military specialist, and authority on mercenary soldiers. He is by all accounts as looney as a tune. I was born in 1945 in Crumpler, West Virginia, a coal camp near Bluefield. My father was a mathematician then serving in the Pacific aboard the destroyer USS Franks, which he described as a wallowing and bovine antique with absolutely no women aboard, but the best the Navy had at the time. Fred Reed’s website is at https://fredoneverything.org/ .
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🌎 THE WAR ON VENEZUELA IS BUILT ON LIES
« Reply #709 on: February 25, 2019, 12:11:57 AM »
http://johnpilger.com/articles/the-war-on-venezuela-is-built-on-lies

THE WAR ON VENEZUELA IS BUILT ON LIES
21 February 2019


Travelling with Hugo Chavez, I soon understood the threat of Venezuela. At a farming co-operative in Lara state, people waited patiently and with good humour in the heat. Jugs of water and melon juice were passed around. A guitar was played; a woman, Katarina, stood and sang with a husky contralto.

"What did her words say?" I asked.

"That we are proud," was the reply.

The applause for her merged with the arrival of Chavez. Under one arm he carried a satchel bursting with books. He wore his big red shirt and greeted people by name, stopping to listen. What struck me was his capacity to listen.

But now he read. For almost two hours he read into the microphone from the stack of books beside him: Orwell, Dickens, Tolstoy, Zola, Hemingway, Chomsky, Neruda: a page here, a line or two there. People clapped and whistled as he moved from author to author.

Then farmers took the microphone and told him what they knew, and what they needed; one ancient face, carved it seemed from a nearby banyan, made a long, critical speech on the subject of irrigation; Chavez took notes.

Wine is grown here, a dark Syrah type grape. "John, John, come up here," said El Presidente, having watched me fall asleep in the heat and the depths of Oliver Twist.

"He likes red wine," Chavez told the cheering, whistling audience, and presented me with a bottle of "vino de la gente". My few words in bad Spanish brought whistles and laughter.

Watching Chavez with la gente made sense of a man who promised, on coming to power, that his every move would be subject to the will of the people.  In eight years, Chavez won eight elections and referendums: a world record. He was electorally the most popular head of state in the Western Hemisphere, probably in the world.

Every major chavista reform was voted on, notably a new constitution of which 71 per cent of the people approved each of the 396 articles that enshrined unheard of freedoms, such as Article 123, which for the first time recognised the human rights of mixed-race and black people, of whom Chavez was one.

One of his tutorials on the road quoted a feminist writer: "Love and solidarity are the same." His audiences understood this well and expressed themselves with dignity, seldom with deference. Ordinary people regarded Chavez and his government as their first champions: as theirs.

This was especially true of the indigenous, mestizos and Afro-Venezuelans, who had been held in historic contempt by Chavez's immediate predecessors and by those who today live far from the  barrios, in the mansions and penthouses of East Caracas, who commute to Miami where their banks are and who regard themselves as "white". They are the powerful core of what the media calls "the opposition".

When I met this class, in suburbs called Country Club, in homes appointed with low chandeliers and bad portraits, I recognised them. They could be white South Africans, the petite bourgeoisie of Constantia and Sandton, pillars of the cruelties of apartheid.

Cartoonists in the Venezuelan press, most of which are owned by an oligarchy and oppose the government, portrayed Chavez as an ape. A radio host referred to "the monkey". In the private universities, the verbal currency of the children of the well-off is often racist abuse of those whose shacks are just visible through the pollution.

Although identity politics are all the rage in the pages of liberal newspapers in the West, race and class are two words almost never uttered in the mendacious "coverage" of Washington's latest, most naked attempt to grab the world's greatest source of oil and reclaim its "backyard".

For all the chavistas' faults - such as allowing the Venezuelan economy to become hostage to the fortunes of oil and never seriously challenging big capital and corruption - they brought social justice and pride to millions of people and they did it with unprecedented democracy.

"Of the 92 elections that we've monitored," said former President Jimmy Carter, whose Carter Centre is a respected monitor of elections around the world, "I would say the election process in Venezuela is the best in the world." By way of contrast, said Carter, the US election system, with its emphasis on campaign money, "is one of the worst".

In extending the franchise to a parallel people's state of communal authority, based in the poorest barrios, Chavez described Venezuelan democracy as "our version of Rousseau's idea of popular sovereignty".

In Barrio La Linea, seated in her tiny kitchen, Beatrice Balazo told me her children were the first generation of the poor to attend a full day's school and be given a hot meal and to learn music, art and dance. "I have seen their confidence blossom like flowers," she said.

In Barrio La Vega, I listened to a nurse, Mariella Machado, a black woman of 45 with a wicked laugh, address an urban land council on subjects ranging from homelessness to illegal war. That day, they were launching Mision Madres de Barrio, a programme aimed at poverty among single mothers. Under the constitution, women have the right to be paid as carers, and can borrow from a special women's bank. Now the poorest housewives get the equivalent of $200 a month.

In a room lit by a single fluorescent tube, I met Ana Lucia Ferandez, aged 86, and Mavis Mendez, aged 95. A mere 33-year-old, Sonia Alvarez, had come with her two children. Once, none of them could read and write; now they were studying mathematics. For the first time in its history, Venezuela has almost 100 per cent literacy.

This is the work of Mision Robinson, which was designed for adults and teenagers previously denied an education because of poverty. Mision Ribas gives everyone the opportunity of a secondary education, called a bachillerato.(The names Robinson and Ribas refer to Venezuelan independence leaders from the 19th century).

In her 95 years, Mavis Mendez had seen a parade of governments, mostly vassals of Washington, preside over the theft of billions of dollars in oil spoils, much of it flown to Miami. "We didn't matter in a human sense," she told me. "We lived and died without real education and running water, and food we couldn't afford. When we fell ill, the weakest died. Now I can read and write my name and so much more; and whatever the rich and the media say, we have planted the seeds of true democracy and I have the joy of seeing it happen."

In 2002, during a Washington-backed coup, Mavis's sons and daughters and grandchildren and great-grandchildren joined hundreds of thousands who swept down from the barrios on the hillsides and demanded the army remained loyal to Chavez.

"The people rescued me," Chavez told me. "They did it with the media against me, preventing even the basic facts of what happened. For popular democracy in heroic action, I suggest you look no further."

Since Chavez's death in 2013, his successor Nicolas Maduro has shed his derisory label in the Western press as a "former bus driver" and become Saddam Hussein incarnate. His media abuse is ridiculous. On his watch, the slide in the price of oil has caused hyper inflation and played havoc with prices in a society that imports almost all its food; yet, as the journalist and film-maker Pablo Navarrete reported this week, Venezuela is not the catastrophe it has been painted. "There is food everywhere," he wrote. "I have filmed lots of videos of food in markets [all over Caracas] ... it's Friday night and the restaurants are full."

In 2018, Maduro was re-elected President. A section of the opposition boycotted the election, a tactic tried against Chavez. The boycott failed: 9,389,056 people voted; sixteen parties participated and six candidates stood for the presidency. Maduro won 6,248,864 votes, or 67.84 per cent.

On election day, I spoke to one of the 150 foreign election observers. "It was entirely fair," he said. "There was no fraud; none of the lurid media claims stood up. Zero. Amazing really."

Like a page from Alice's tea party, the Trump administration has presented Juan Guaido, a pop-up creation of the CIA-front National Endowment for Democracy, as the "legitimate President of Venezuela". Unheard of by 81 per cent of the Venezuelan people, according to The Nation, Guaido has been elected by no one.

Maduro is "illegitimate", says Trump (who won the US presidency with three million fewer votes than his opponent), a "dictator", says demonstrably unhinged vice president Mike Pence and an oil trophy-in-waiting, says "national security" adviser John Bolton (who when I interviewed him in 2003 said, "Hey, are you a communist, maybe even Labour?").

As his "special envoy to Venezuela" (coup master), Trump has appointed a convicted felon, Elliot Abrams, whose intrigues in the service of Presidents Reagan and George W. Bush helped produce the Iran-Contra scandal in the 1980s and plunge central America into years of blood-soaked misery.

Putting Lewis Carroll aside, these  "crazies" belong in newsreels from the 1930s. And yet their lies about Venezuela have been taken up with enthusiasm by those paid to keep the record straight.

On Channel 4 News, Jon Snow bellowed at the Labour MP Chris Williamson, "Look, you and Mr Corbyn are in a very nasty corner [on Venezuela]!" When Williamson tried to explain why threatening a sovereign country was wrong, Snow cut him off. "You've had a good go!"

In 2006, Channel 4 News effectively accused Chavez of plotting to make nuclear weapons with Iran: a fantasy. The then Washington correspondent, Jonathan Rugman, allowed a war criminal, Donald Rumsfeld, to liken Chavez to Hitler, unchallenged.

Researchers at the University of the West of England studied the BBC's reporting of Venezuela over a ten-year period. They looked at 304 reports and found that only three of these referred to any of the positive policies of the government. For the BBC, Venezuela's democratic record, human rights legislation, food programmes, healthcare initiatives and poverty reduction did not happen.  The greatest literacy programme in human history did not happen, just as the millions who march in support of Maduro and in memory of Chavez, do not exist.

When asked why she filmed only an opposition march, the BBC reporter Orla Guerin tweeted that it was "too difficult" to be on two marches in one day.

A war has been declared on Venezuela, of which the truth is "too difficult" to report.

It is too difficult to report the collapse of oil prices since 2014 as largely the result of criminal machinations by Wall Street. It is too difficult to report the blocking of Venezuela's access to the US-dominated international financial system as sabotage. It is too difficult to report Washington's "sanctions" against Venezuela, which have caused the loss of at least $6billion in Venezuela's revenue since 2017, including  $2billion worth of imported medicines, as illegal, or the Bank of England's refusal to return Venezuela's gold reserves as an act of piracy.

The former United Nations Rapporteur, Alfred de Zayas, has likened this to a "medieval siege" designed "to bring countries to their knees". It is a criminal assault, he says. It is similar to that faced by Salvador Allende in 1970 when President Richard Nixon and his equivalent of John Bolton, Henry Kissinger, set out to "make the economy [of Chile] scream". The long dark night of Pinochet followed.

The Guardian correspondent, Tom Phillips, has tweeted a picture of a cap on which the words in Spanish mean in local slang: "Make Venezuela fucking cool again." The reporter as clown may be the final stage of much of mainstream journalism's degeneration.

Should the CIA stooge Guaido and his white supremacists grab power, it will be the 68th overthrow of a sovereign government by the United States, most of them democracies. A fire sale of Venezuela's utilities and mineral wealth will surely follow, along with the theft of the country's oil, as outlined by John Bolton.

Under the last Washington-controlled government in Caracas, poverty reached historic proportions. There was no healthcare for those could not pay. There was no universal education; Mavis Mendez, and millions like her, could not read or write. How cool is that, Tom?

Follow John Pilger on twitter @johnpilger
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Re: 🌎 THE WAR ON VENEZUELA IS BUILT ON LIES
« Reply #710 on: February 25, 2019, 02:32:42 AM »
http://johnpilger.com/articles/the-war-on-venezuela-is-built-on-lies

THE WAR ON VENEZUELA IS BUILT ON LIES
21 February 2019

Every major chavista reform was voted on, notably a new constitution of which 71 per cent of the people approved each of the 396 articles that enshrined unheard of freedoms, such as Article 123, which for the first time recognised the human rights of mixed-race and black people, of whom Chavez was one.

One of his tutorials on the road quoted a feminist writer: "Love and solidarity are the same." His audiences understood this well and expressed themselves with dignity, seldom with deference. Ordinary people regarded Chavez and his government as their first champions: as theirs.

This was especially true of the indigenous, mestizos and Afro-Venezuelans, who had been held in historic contempt by Chavez's immediate predecessors and by those who today live far from the  barrios, in the mansions and penthouses of East Caracas, who commute to Miami where their banks are and who regard themselves as "white". They are the powerful core of what the media calls "the opposition".

//
For all the chavistas' faults - such as allowing the Venezuelan economy to become hostage to the fortunes of oil and never seriously challenging big capital and corruption - they brought social justice and pride to millions of people and they did it with unprecedented democracy.

"Of the 92 elections that we've monitored," said former President Jimmy Carter, whose Carter Centre is a respected monitor of elections around the world, "I would say the election process in Venezuela is the best in the world." By way of contrast, said Carter, the US election system, with its emphasis on campaign money, "is one of the worst".

//
In 2006, Channel 4 News effectively accused Chavez of plotting to make nuclear weapons with Iran: a fantasy. The then Washington correspondent, Jonathan Rugman, allowed a war criminal, Donald Rumsfeld, to liken Chavez to Hitler, unchallenged.

Researchers at the University of the West of England studied the BBC's reporting of Venezuela over a ten-year period. They looked at 304 reports and found that only three of these referred to any of the positive policies of the government. For the BBC, Venezuela's democratic record, human rights legislation, food programmes, healthcare initiatives and poverty reduction did not happen.  The greatest literacy programme in human history did not happen, just as the millions who march in support of Maduro and in memory of Chavez, do not exist.

When asked why she filmed only an opposition march, the BBC reporter Orla Guerin tweeted that it was "too difficult" to be on two marches in one day.

A war has been declared on Venezuela, of which the truth is "too difficult" to report.

Reporting like this is why independent reporting by journals like John Pilger is so valuable. There is scarcely a peep from any of the so-called resistance in this country about this latest imperial project. Mike Pompeo, John Bolton, and war criminal Elliot Abrams might as well be standard-bearers for the Democrats, for all the opposition they have mustered. And as Pilger demonstrates, corpmedia is all in.

Nothing has changed since Smedley Butler complained about being hired muscle for the capitalists.
"It is difficult to write a paradiso when all the superficial indications are that you ought to write an apocalypse." -Ezra Pound

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Re: 🌎 THE WAR ON VENEZUELA IS BUILT ON LIES
« Reply #711 on: February 25, 2019, 02:40:27 AM »

Reporting like this is why independent reporting by journals like John Pilger is so valuable. There is scarcely a peep from any of the so-called resistance in this country about this latest imperial project. Mike Pompeo, John Bolton, and war criminal Elliot Abrams might as well be standard-bearers for the Democrats, for all the opposition they have mustered. And as Pilger demonstrates, corpmedia is all in.

Nothing has changed since Smedley Butler complained about being hired muscle for the capitalists.

It's gotten worse.

RE
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Re: Global Systemic Geopolitical Crisis
« Reply #712 on: February 25, 2019, 08:47:48 AM »
"Love and solidarity are the same."
America does not know what solidarity  is.  America is anti-solidarity :( And Trump is the anti-solidarity-Christ.
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🌍 Libya: The true face of ‘humanitarian intervention’
« Reply #713 on: February 27, 2019, 12:12:15 AM »
https://www.greanvillepost.com/2019/02/25/libya-the-true-face-of-humanitarian-intervention/

Libya: The true face of ‘humanitarian intervention’
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HELP ENLIGHTEN YOUR FELLOWS. BE SURE TO PASS THIS ON. SURVIVAL DEPENDS ON IT.
By Dan Kovalik • First published time: 19 Mar, 2018 • RT.com dispatches


Smoke rises after coalition air strikes in Tripoli, Libya. This was the NATO campaign that made Libya into an international catastrophe. And France, for one, had even more sinister motives, as Sarkozy was and is still hiding financial deals with Gaddafi and simply wanted the man dead. Talk about unholy motives.

Seven years ago today, NATO began its “humanitarian bombing” of Libya. While “humanitarian bombing” is an oxymoron, many believe that a country is not truly advancing human rights if it’s not bombing another back to the Stone Age.

As an initial matter, it must be said that while the UN had authorized a NATO fly-zone over Libya to protect civilians – all civilians, by the way – there was never authorization for the full-scale invasion which was carried out and which quickly became aimed at regime change. Therefore, the NATO operation which actually took place was illegal.

What’s more, the Libyan invasion did more to undermine human rights than it did to protect them.  According to Amnesty International’s most recent report on Libya, there are now three rival governments vying for power in the country along with various militias, smugglers and other sundry armed groups. As Amnesty International explains, all participants in the armed conflict in Libya “carried out indiscriminate attacks in heavily populated areas leading to deaths of civilians and unlawful killings.  Armed groups arrested and indefinitely detained thousands of people. Torture and other ill-treatment was widespread in prisons under the control of armed groups, militias and state officials.” And, to top it all off, slaves are being sold in public markets in Libya – something not seen in the world for over a century.

And this is the aftermath of an intervention which, we were told, was supposed to improve human rights in Libya. Indeed, the intervention was spearheaded by Hillary Clinton, Samantha Power and Susan Rice – three self-described warriors for human and women’s rights. Instead, they became three ushers of the Apocalypse. In addition, Italy and France, which also helped lead the charge for invasion, had their own reasons for intervening in Libya. For his part, French President Nicolas Sarkozy appeared to be singularly focused on killing Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi, who allegedly gave him €50 million for his presidential campaign – a claim which was just coming to light and to which Gaddafi was the chief witness.

While Gaddafi certainly was no saint, he was a much better leader for his country than many of those the West supports, such as the monarchy of Saudi Arabia, the death squad state of Colombia or the coup government in Honduras. Indeed, Muammar Gaddafi, at the urging of his son, Saif, was attempting to democratize Libya at the time of the invasion, and the pair were willingly accepting the help of the US’s National Democratic Institute to do so!

In addition, Gaddafi had taken Libya from being the least prosperous country in Africa to the being the most prosperous by the time of the NATO operation. Thus, as one commentator explains, before the intervention, “Libya had the highest GDP per capita and life expectancy on the continent. Less people lived below the poverty line than in the Netherlands.”

Moreover, one of the main reasons, we were told, that NATO needed to intervene in 2011 was to save Benghazi from imminent harm from the government forces of Gaddafi. However, Hillary Clinton’s own internal emails show that her team recognized that any humanitarian problems confronting Benghazi had passed by the time of the NATO bombing. For example, Clinton’s assistant, Huma Abedin, in an email dated February 21, 2011 – that is, just a mere four days after the initial anti-government protests broke out in Libya – explains that the Gaddafi forces no longer controlled Benghazi and that the mood in the city was indeed “celebratory” by that time. Then, on March 2, just over two weeks before the bombing began, Harriet Spanos of USAID sent an email describing “ecurity reports” which “confirm that Benghazi has been calm over the past couple of days.”

Indeed, as explained to me by Khaled Kaim, Gaddafi’s last foreign minister, who I recently met in Venezuela, he personally urged US representatives at the UN Security Council to hold off the planned bombing raid for one hour so that UN observers on the ground could confirm his claim that Benghazi was not under threat. Of course, his pleas were ignored.  Kaim’s warnings that the impending invasion of Libya would only unleash more chaos and terror on the world were also disregarded.

Meanwhile, Benghazi is now the site of a grave humanitarian crisis and a hotbed for terrorists post-intervention. Again, Amnesty International writes that “[a] number of mass graves were uncovered in Benghazi between February and October [2017]. On at least four occasions, groups of bodies were found in different parts of the city with their hands bound behind their backs, and in some cases blindfolded with signs of torture and execution-style killing.”

In addition, during the early part of 2017, one armed faction laid siege to an apartment complex in the Ganfouda area of Benghazi, “cutting off all supplies to the area, including food and water, and had trapped civilians and wounded fighters [of another faction] without access to medical care and other basic services.”  And, when the same faction broke the siege by launching an armed assault on this area, it engaged in “indiscriminate” killings, with fighters from the faction posing for photos with the dead bodies.

And yet, where are the self-proclaimed defenders of human rights for Libya and Benghazi now? Where are their cries for humanitarian intervention? Of course, all of those responsible for this absolute disaster have moved on and remain silent about the tragedy they have wrought in that country.

Of course, the intervention in Libya was not truly about human rights, just as other similar Western interventions in countries like Iraq, Afghanistan and Syria have not been about either human rights or even fighting terror. And indeed, these interventions have only undermined human rights and further spread terror. In the case of Libya, the predictable havoc unleashed there has spread to neighboring states such as Niger, Tunisia, Mali, Chad and Cameroon. In addition, the refugee crisis created by the chaos unleashed by the NATO intervention in Libya is undermining the stability of all of Europe.

One can only conclude from this that the West, and especially the United States, is hell-bent on spreading instability throughout the world, despite its pretending to accomplish the very opposite.  Indeed, the US continues to bomb Libya periodically in an effort to at least contain the very forces of chaos it helped unleash there.

In chaos, Western countries and their transnational corporations see opportunity for more domination and more profits. As with Little Finger in Game of Thrones, they see chaos not as a pit, but as a ladder. In the case of countries like Libya, the West goes in and bombs it to oblivion and then brings in companies which charge that country to rebuild it. And the West is not shy about this grisly strategy for money-making.

Indeed, as the New York Times explained in an article just after the NATO operation ended with the brutal killing of Gaddafi – an article accompanied by a photo of an oil terminal in Misurata, Libya, on fire and with black smoke billowing out – “Western security, construction and infrastructure companies that see profit-making opportunities receding in Iraq and Afghanistan have turned their sights on Libya…  Entrepreneurs are abuzz about the business potential of a country with huge needs and the oil to pay for them, plus the competitive advantage of Libyan gratitude toward the United States and its NATO partners.

“A week before Colonel Qaddafi’s death on Oct. 20, a delegation from 80 French companies arrived in Tripoli to meet officials of the Transitional National Council, the interim government. Last week, the new British defense minister, Philip Hammond, urged British companies to “pack their suitcases” and head to Tripoli.”

But what is good for such corporations is not good for the rest of us. Simply put, the world cannot afford another war which wreaks havoc on entire regions of the globe, ushering in massive human misery and environmental destruction in its wake.  As King Pyrrhus might have said, another “victory” like the one in Libya may be the undoing of us.

Daniel Kovalik for RT
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Daniel Kovalik teaches International Human Rights at the University of Pittsburgh School of Law.
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🌍 The Global Assault on Indigenous Peoples
« Reply #714 on: March 05, 2019, 12:16:03 AM »
https://www.counterpunch.org/2019/03/04/the-global-assault-on-indigenous-peoples/

March 4, 2019
The Global Assault on Indigenous Peoples
by Kenn Orphan


Photograph by Eliseo Carpintero (ECarpintero)

    “There’s really no such thing as the ‘voiceless’. There are only the deliberately silenced, or the preferably unheard.”

    – Arundhati Roy

    “We must answer their call. Our Mother Earth, militarized, fenced-in, poisoned, a place where basic rights are systematically violated, demands that we take action. Let us build societies that are able to coexist in a dignified way, in a way that protects life. Let us come together and remain hopeful as we defend and care for the blood of the Earth and of its spirits.”

    – Berta Caceres, Indigenous rights and environmental activist of the Lenca people, murdered in Honduras in 2016

A few years ago when I was in Panama I was fortunate to spend some time with the indigenous Ngäbe–Buglé. They reside in the lush rainforest that blankets much of the country. Their villages are simple, but graciously laid out with the natural world around them. The people have a reverence for wildlife, using only what they need, and culture, ancestral ways and community are paramount. But as in every other place on the planet they have been under siege by the forces of capital.

Dam projects largely devised to benefit mining companies have inundated scores of villages and devastated farms and fishing. Rare species like the Tabasará rain frog are threatened with extinction due to the loss of habitat. Four years ago a dam claimed a small indigenous village on the sacred Tabasará River. The villagers narrowly escaped drowning as their homes flooded in the night. They were given no warning.

In May of last year the river was shut down for maintenance on the Barro Blanco hydroelectric dam. Tens of thousands of fish and crustaceans were left to suffocate in the mud. Many more dam projects are planned for this small country. While the Ngäbe–Buglé have protested their dispossession and the destruction to their way of life, they have been met with threats, disappearances and violence from the state and operatives from various companies who stand to benefit from the projects. But the lords of capital, the banks, hold the most power. For instance, FMO Bank of Holland and DEG Bank of Germany were responsible for the Barro Blanco dam.

In stark contrast to the Ngäbe–Buglé way of life is the wealthy new high rise section of the capital, Panama City. Here glass and steel towers scrap an unforgiving hot Central American sky. Yet there are few sidewalks in this area. The moneyed elite drive directly into their palatial condos through secured garage doors on the street. There isn’t a need nor is there a desire to walk here unless you are poor.

It is a landscape of alienation repeated around the world from Jakarta to Manilla to Mumbai where the wealthy cordon themselves off from an ever growing peasantry behind gilded gates. But about an hour and a half away from the capital is the forgotten city of Colón where most of the inhabitants are people of colour and poverty is crushing. In truth, most of the extreme wealth entering the Panama Canal is concentrated in the ruling top .01%.

And this gets to one of the most tragic outcomes of these economic and ecological assaults: displacement. Millions of indigenous people around the world have been evicted from their ancestral lands only to wind up in the hellhole slums of megacities. Here they are most often locked in poverty, forced to abandon their culture and language for conformity, and forgotten by society. To be sure, this is the world that global capitalism envisions for us all.

But whether it is the Ngäbe–Buglé in Panama, or the Bonda of India, or the Wet’suwet’en in Canada, or the Papuan in New Guinea, or the Kariri-Xoko in Brazil, or the Aboriginal in Australia, or the Ogoni in Nigeria, or the Lakota in the US the threat of annihilation is both real and imminent. Thanks to a system of global capital they are up against powerful forces that seek to strip the earth of every last resource for the profit of a few. And they will eliminate anyone who stands in their way. The NGO Global Witness reported that over 200 indigenous rights activists have been murdered around the world last year. A record. The activist Berta Caceres was a victim of this global crime. And today there is no sign of this carnage slowing down.

The assaults on indigenous people around the world bear one thing in common. These are the people on the front lines of a war for what remains. A war of resources that amount to enormous profits for the very few. Of course they have always been on that front line since the early days of colonialism. Days where outright genocide was common. But through the lens of catastrophic climate change and biospheric collapse the current economic order must be seen as the death cult that it is. Incapable of introspection or self-restraint. Drunk on their hubris and narcissism. Ominicidal in their pursuit of coin. And it is the indigenous who are closest to the living earth who stand most in the way of their plunder. They are rendered non-persons in corporate media and displaced or eliminated so that the flow of capital continues uninterrupted. And with capitalism itself on its last legs, that death cult is becoming ever more desperate, duplicitous, vicious and bold.

I remember when I was in Panama walking through a Ngäbe village on a balmy afternoon. Insects hummed around me. Tropical birds pierced the canopy of trees with shrieks. The humid air dampened my clothes. I could hear the sounds of children laughing as they came home from school. Old women hung out colourful clothes to dry and they immediately reminded me of Tibetan prayer flags. A young artist was sitting in his cabin with the door open carving a beautiful piece of fallen wood. He looked at me and smiled. “Welcome, and come in,” he said. I wonder sometimes what has become of him and that village. But I will admit I am afraid to find out.
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More articles by:Kenn Orphan

Kenn Orphan is an artist, sociologist, radical nature lover and weary, but committed activist. He can be reached at kennorphan.com.
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🌍 Groundhog Jesus Day
« Reply #715 on: March 05, 2019, 12:27:20 AM »
https://www.greanvillepost.com/2019/03/04/groundhog-jesus-day/

Groundhog Jesus Day

HELP ENLIGHTEN YOUR FELLOWS. BE SURE TO PASS THIS ON. SURVIVAL DEPENDS ON IT.

By Darwin Holmstrom


For decades American policy has focused on serving the interests of Israel at least as much as serving the citizens of the United States. Americans are just starting to wake up to that fact, but Benjamin Netanyahu acknowledged it on camera in 2001, when he was filmed saying: “I know what America is. America is a thing you can move very easily, move it in the right direction.”

Israeli control of U.S. policy is largely due to the effectiveness of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC). AIPAC exerts greater control over America’s congressional representatives than virtually any other lobbying organizations. AIPAC has long flaunted this fact, boasting about the power it exercises in Washington. Illinois Senator Charles Percy declined to sign onto an AIPAC-sponsored initiative and was then defeated in his 1984 re-election campaign. AIPAC raised more than a million dollars to help defeat Percy, which was a lot of campaign money in those days. In 1992, AIPAC’s president David Steiner bragged (on tape) that he was personally responsible for President George H.W. Bush providing $3 billion in foreign aid to Israel. In the years since, AIPAC has grown even more powerful. In 2013 Jan Harman, a former congressional representative with a sterling record of defending Israeli interests in Washington, told CNN that her congressional colleagues had resisted backing Obama’s Iranian nuclear agreement because Israel had lobbied against it.

AIPAC is not a political action committee in the traditional sense; it doesn’t provide money directly to candidates. Rather, it operates more like a brokerage, directing Jewish PACs and individual donors—along with a growing network of Christian Zionist groups and similar organizations—to contribute money to candidates through a vast network of AIPAC-controlled organizations at the national, state, and local levels. This arrangement allows AIPAC to inject vast amounts of cash into campaigns across the country while avoiding contribution limits and other laws, as well as avoiding public scrutiny of AIPAC’s activities.

Israel’s behavior is not making AIPAC’s job any easier. Revulsion against Israel’s genocide, apartheid, land theft, and internment of the Palestinian people is growing around the world On March 1, 2019 the United Nations announced the results of an investigation by the U.N. Independent Commission of Inquiry, which concluded that Israel had committed war crimes and crimes against humanity during the 2018 Gaza border protests. During these largely peaceful protests Israeli soldiers shot and killed 189 Palestinians and injured another 6,100 between March and December of 2018. During this period, “Israeli snipers shot at journalists, health workers, children, and persons with disabilities, knowing they were clearly recognizable as such,” according to Santiago Canton, chair of the independent commission. Canton said the report “found reasonable grounds to believe that Israeli security forces committed serious violations of human rights and international humanitarian law. These violations clearly warrant criminal investigation and prosecution.”

The Colonization of the United States

The degree to which Israel dominates U.S. governmental policy approaches the level of colonization. Israel’s priorities become America’s priorities. If Israel wants a country destabilized or a regime changed, it doesn’t send in the Israeli Defense Force (IDF) to accomplish the task; it has its colony the United States do its dirty work. When Israel wanted Saddam Hussein ousted from Iraq, it was the U.S. military that ousted Hussein, not the IDF. If the U.S. goes to war with Iran, the war will only serve Israeli interests, not American interests. AIPAC directs U.S. policy to such a degree that it achieves returns on the money it invests that are disproportionately massive compared to the original expenditure. For AIPAC, the U.S. congress is a relatively cheap date.

Representative Ilhan Omar from Minnesota brought this situation to the public’s attention when she tweeted that U.S. politicians represented the interests of Israel because of AIPAC money, adding: “It’s all about the Benjamins baby.”
Pastor John C. Hagee of Cornerstone Church in San Antonio Texas at the U.S. Capitol on July 18, 2007 during CUFI’s (Christians United for Israel) annual conference. Religious lunatics and charlatans have always been a fixture of American culture.

Publicly criticizing AIPAC has long constituted political suicide and exposing the control AIPAC has over American policy elicits bipartisan condemnation. AIPAC is one of the most important money teats for U.S. politicians, and our congressional representatives love nothing more than suckling from a swollen money teat leaking large amounts of cash from its nipple. Democrats and Republicans alike denounced Omar for publicly stating what is obvious to anyone with enough capacity for abstract thought to perform basic ablutions after eliminating solid waste and these political piglets made a bipartisan effort to smear Omar as “anti-Semitic.”

Critics of Israel’s control of U.S. policy are invariably labeled “anti-Semitic”; every critic of Israel must be marginalized, and applying the anti-Semite label has historically been the quickest way to destroy such critics. That’s not the case in Israel itself, which has a relatively free press; Americans can find more actual reporting about Israel’s genocide, apartheid, land theft, and other war crimes against the Palestinian people in Israeli news sources like Haaretz and Mondoweiss than they can find in U.S. corporate media, which labels the slightest mention of Israel’s crimes against humanity “anti-Semitic.” This is the case even when the people criticizing Israel’s atrocities are themselves Jewish.

U.S. corporate media sources dutifully parroted the pro-Israeli talking points espoused by their masters in the ruling elite when attacking Ms. Omar, but this time the Zionist propaganda spewing from the talking heads elicited an unpredictable response from the peasantry. This time Americans generally sided with Ms. Omar rather than the chattering propagandists on cable news, rendering the ruling elite’s attempt to direct the peasantry into providing unquestioned support for Israel ineffective, perhaps for the first time in modern history. “Ilhan Omar’s… presence disrupts a status quo of bipartisan, uncritical support of Israel,” human rights attorney Noura Erakat said in an article published in Middle East Eye.

“That Omar keeps raising her hand and sticking her neck out after all that speaks to her character and will, both of which appear to have been forged in steel,” wrote the Minneapolis weekly City Pages.

Ms. Omar proved City Pages’ assessment of her character correct when she told an audience at a Washington bookstore: “I want to talk about the political influence in this country that says it is okay to push for allegiance to a foreign country.” This was obviously “anti-Semitic,” at least according to Steve Heungs, a former Minnesota assistant attorney general, but the fact that a semi-corporate news organ like City Pages defended Ms. Omar indicates that opposition to the United States acting as a subservient colony of Israel is growing from the ground up.

Strange Bedfellows

One would think Israel’s control of U.S. governmental policy might begin to wane after the U.N. determined that Israel was actively engaging in crimes against humanity and the American people are increasingly questioning congressional allegiance to Israel, but AIPAC has found a strange-but-powerful bedfellow: Christian Zionists. Christian Zionists have developed a peculiar interpretation of the Bible, taking to heart obscure and random bits and pieces of scripture that support their Israel-centric worldview. The hardcore among them believe that the Jewish people need to gather in Israel and rebuild the third Jewish temple on the Temple Mount. The first temple was destroyed by the Babylonians and the second temple was destroyed by the Romans. The Christian Zionists believe that building a third Jewish temple on the Temple Mount is a prerequisite for Jesus to come back and rapture them up to heaven. We don’t really know if they developed this theory based on some bizarre interpretation of Biblical scripture or if it evolved from some twisted folk tale, as did Groundhog Day, for example. Most likely it was a combination of the two.

The Christian Zionists’ celestial retirement plan has a slight problem in the form of the three Muslim mosques built on the Temple Mount, including the Dome of the Rock, which was completed in 692 CE and is still standing, making it one of the oldest Muslim structures on earth. Most people find this impressive, but for the people who believe the Dome of the Rock needs to be razed and replaced by a third Jewish temple to entice Jesus to come out of hiding, it’s just a very old annoyance, an obstacle between them and their rapture. The same is true of the Palestinian people themselves, who are nothing but a speed bump in the Christian Zionists’ plan to make Jerusalem a goyim-free zone, so Christian Zionists are the most fervent supporters of Israel’s genocide against the Palestinians. Every decent Jewish person is appalled by Israel’s slow-paced genocide of that country’s indigenous Palestinian population, but America’s Christian Zionists are frustrated with the leisurely pace and want Israel to step up its genocide. They’re tired of waiting for Jesus and want to force His Hand.

The sane world, however, is having a different reaction. For reasons known only to those few people invited into the most exclusive meetings at the annual gathering of the Bilderberg Group, the ruling elite continues to support Israel’s criminal regime, but Israel’s war crimes against the Palestinian people are disgusting the rest of the world. The revulsion people feel toward Israel’s criminal behavior has grown to a point where talking heads repeating the ruling elite’s propaganda on television can no longer placate that disgust. You can blow out a candle, as Peter Gabriel pointed out the last time the world became fed up with a criminal apartheid state, but you can’t blow out a fire.

But Israel will always have the support of Christian Zionists, at least until Jesus crawls out of his hidey hole and raptures them. Unless, of course, the Christian Zionists have confused the rapture with Groundhog Day. If that’s the case, when Jesus emerges on the Temple Mount and sees his shadow, he might just crawl back into his hole and resume hibernation. Then the Christian Zionists will have to wait another 2,000 years for him to come back out and rapture their dumb asses.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Darwin Holmstrom has worked as a farmhand, factory laborer, assistant potato inspector, adjunct professor, and book publisher, but mostly he writes. He’s written, co-written, contributed to, and ghost written over 40 books on subjects ranging from goats in mythology and Les Paul guitars to Indian motorcycles and action-adventure novels. He’s currently working on How to Build a Guillotine from Upcycled Pallets and other Ecologically Sound Tips for the Environmentally Conscious Revolutionary. His hobbies include sedition and collusion with Russians and other communists.
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Re: Global Systemic Geopolitical Crisis
« Reply #716 on: March 05, 2019, 01:11:44 PM »
Coming from an assistant potato inspector, this must be real newz...........
I know exactly what you mean. Let me tell you why you’re here. You’re here because you know something. What you know you can’t explain, but you feel it. You’ve felt it your entire life, that there’s something wrong with the world.
You don’t know what it is but its there, like a splinter in your mind

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🌎 Why Calling US a ‘Democracy’ Is Both False & Dangerous to Do
« Reply #717 on: March 18, 2019, 01:43:05 AM »
https://www.greanvillepost.com/2019/03/15/why-calling-us-a-democracy-is-both-false-dangerous-to-do/

Why Calling US a ‘Democracy’ Is Both False & Dangerous to Do

A capitalist democracy is an oxymoron, and the US, above all other countries, illustrates the truth of that assertion.

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Eric ZUESSE | 15.03.2019 | WORLD / Americas • Crossposted with Strategic Culture • Image by DonkeyHotey
It’s false because it is definitely untrue, and that’s not merely because America has a higher percentage of its residents in prison than does any other nation on this planet, but also because the only scientific studies that have been done of the matter show — they prove scientifically — that the US is a dictatorship by its very wealthiest residents, against all the rest of the population. Traditionally, that’s called an “aristocracy,” not a democracy, but ever since Mussolini in the 1920s, it came to be called “fascism,” which is the successor to “feudalism” and thus is merely the modernized form of feudalism. What used to be called by such terms as “monarchy” or “aristocracy” is thus now called “fascism” but the leopard is the same regardless of what it is labeled, and what it really is a dictatorship. Mussolini sometimes instead called fascism “corporationism” and it certainly is today’s United States Government, even if some people choose to call it ‘democracy’. It’s what the US Government has been scientifically proven to be: dictatorship, by the richest few (the controlling owners of the international corporations), against the entire public.

But even worse than being only false, calling the US a ‘democracy’ is also itself extremely dangerous to the entire world, and here is why:

Every time that the US perpetrates a coup (such as it’s trying now to do against Venezuela) or a military invasion (such as it did to Iraq 2003 and Libya 2011 and Syria 2012- and to Yemen 2015-, and many others) the US regime and its propagandists call it an action ‘for humanitarian purposes’, and for regime-change ‘to bring democracy and human rights’ to that country, and it’s always lies, which wouldn’t even be believed by anyone who knows that the US itself is actually a dictatorship, which it is. So, the lie of calling the US a ‘democracy’ is actually okaying a lying dictatorship by using, for it, the term “democracy,” which this particular dictatorship chooses to refer to itself, for PR purposes.

Calling the US a ‘democracy’ is to support this government that the entire world (in the only polls that have been done of the matter) recognizes to be the most aggressive and dangerous regime on Earth. To smear the good name of “democracy” that way, by calling the world’s most rapacious Government a ‘democracy’, is to assist in corroding that high term of praise, “democracy,” and turning it instead into an insult, which applies to what is actually the globally recognized most aggressive and dangerous nation on this planet.

The United States of America used to be a limited democracy, but now it’s no longer even that, and to call it a ‘democracy’ at all is not only false, but it encourages the world’s most dangerous and harmful regime and sets it as a model for other nations. To encourage evil by lying to say it’s not that but is instead good, is itself evil, or else rabidly ignorant and deceived; but, in any case, it is a very wrong thing to do.

On March 7th the liberal US billionaire who owns Bloomberg News was so much opposed to the over-the-top, far too overtly fascist, billionaires who now control the country, so that Bloomberg News headlined “Pence Asked Merkel to Provoke Russia by Sending Warships to Crimea”, and their reporters opened:

The US leaned on German Chancellor Angela Merkel last month to conduct a naval maneuver in Russia’s backyard aimed at provoking President Vladimir Putin, according to three people familiar with the talks. At a Feb. 16 meeting at the Munich Security Conference, US Vice President Mike Pence urged Merkel to send German warships through a narrow channel between the Crimean peninsula and mainland Russia to show Putin that Western powers won’t surrender their access to those waters, according to the officials, who spoke on condition of anonymity. The German leader refused, they said.

On March 8th, RT (a reliably truthful news-site that the US regime calls ‘fake news’ because it reports truths the US rulers don’t want the public to know) headlined “Caving in to the US? Brussels kills its own money laundering ‘blacklist’ after Washington criticism” and reported that the US regime objected to the EU’s European Commission including in its proposed list of 11 additional money-laundering centers four US territories, after which “the Council of the European Union, which consists of the ministers representing all 28 EU members, justified its decision to reject the document with the arguments that seemed strikingly similar to those employed by the US Treasury.” Page 11 of the European Commission’s 36-page detailed explanation of its proposed list said: “Based on the review of additional information sources, the Commission’s analysis has concluded that 11 additional jurisdictions present strategic deficiencies for the purposes of Article 9 of Directive (EU) 2015/849. Those jurisdictions are the following: Afghanistan, American Samoa, Guam, Iraq, Libya, Nigeria, Panama, Puerto Rico, Saudi Arabia, US Virgin Islands, Samoa.” The objective of the additions was to make more difficult the laundering of proceeds from crime. A legal advisory from a law firm representing US international corporations explained that “The US Treasury Department has objected to the inclusion of American Samoa, Guam, Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands on the grounds that the European Commission did not follow the methodology used by FATF in developing its own list of high-risk third countries, and that FATF standards apply to all US territories.”

Supposedly, the methodology of FATF was more ‘transparent’ than that set forth in the European Commission’s 36-page detailed explanation of its proposed 11 additions. The European Council arrived at its rejection of the 11 additions to the list on the grounds that “The consultation ended on 28 February 2019, with the required majority of delegations having declared their intention to object to the delegated act in question, in particular on the basis that the act was not established in a sufficiently transparent way.” The European Council thus accepted without question the US regime’s undocumented allegation that the US regime’s chosen methodology is more ‘transparent’ than the European Commission’s is. In a press release, the European Council justified its decision on the grounds that it “cannot support the current proposal that was not established in a transparent and resilient process that actively incentivises affected countries to take decisive action while also respecting their right to be heard.” In short: BS. How can either the US regime, or the one in the EU, reasonably claim to be ‘transparent’? It’s ridiculous. That’s merely a relationship between the imperial nation and its vassal-states. They’re all dictatorships, they’re a hierarchy of dictatorships. But only the US dictatorship has been scientifically proven.

Anyone who opposes America’s dictatorship of the world will call the US regime what it is: a dictatorship. This cat is now out of the bag and roaming wildly, almost everywhere, trying now even for Venezuela, the Kerch Strait and the South China Sea. (Calling the South China Sea and Kerch Strait ‘disputed waters’ is like calling the surrounding waters of the US ‘disputed waters’; but only the international bully-regime is deliberately trying to “provoke” other nations in order to get them to buckle to its international dictatorship — which is the US regime, which regime Obama had called “the one indispensable nation,” meaning that all others are ‘dispensable’. It’s clearly not only Trump that’s the problem. It’s the regime, which is the dictatorship, and it outlasts any particular ruler.)

The US is no democracy. It clearly is a dictatorship, by its richest. To call that a ‘democracy’, is to insult democracy itself. Maybe America’s actual rulers would therefore like that.

About the author

EricZuesseERIC ZUESSE, Senior Contributing Editor •  Investigative historian Eric Zuesse is the author, most recently, of They’re Not Even Close: The Democratic vs. Republican Economic Records, 1910-2010, and of CHRIST’S VENTRILOQUISTS: The Event that Created Christianity. Besides TGP, his reports and historical analyses are published on many leading current events and political sites, including The Saker, Huffpost, Oped News, and others.
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Offline RE

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🌎 Russian troops land in Caracas as US considers military intervention
« Reply #718 on: March 25, 2019, 12:50:31 AM »
Now the Ruskies are in the regime change Biz too!

RE

https://thinkprogress.org/russian-troops-land-in-venezuela-as-us-considers-military-options-59acc24966d3/

Russian troops land in Caracas as US considers military intervention in Venezuela
Pressure mounts on President Maduro to step down.
D. Parvaz
Mar 24, 2019, 5:19 pm   



Soliders keep watch during a rally in Caracas, Venezuela. (PHOTO CREDIT: Valery Sharifulin/TASS/Getty Images.)

Nearly 100 Russian troops have reportedly landed in the Venezuelan capital of Caracas as the United States, which has hinted that a military option is “on the table,” continues to pressure the country’s president to step down.

Reuters reported Sunday that two Russian planes arrived in Caracas on Saturday, one of them thought to have carried Vasily Tonkoshkurov, chief of staff for Russian ground forces.

Neither Venezuelan nor Russian authorities have issued a comment on the flights.

Venezuela and Russia held joint military exercises in January, and Russian President Vladimir Putin has criticized U.S. support for opposition leader Juan Guaido, who has declared himself interim president, as an interventionist.

Moscow has also vowed to step in and prevent “any provocations to shed blood.”
Bolivarian National Guard of Venezuela stand guard at the Francisco de Paula Santander international bridge in Urena, Venezuela on February 24. CREDIT: LUIS ROBAYO/AFP/Getty Images
U.S. hints at military campaign after Venezuelan soldiers reportedly block aid, kill four

This is the latest measure indicating stronger support from Moscow for embattled President Nicolas Maduro’s regime. On Wednesday, Maduro said Russia would be shipping humanitarian aid into Venezuela, which has been suffering from major political and financial upheaval for the last four years.

In December, Russia sent two bomber aircraft capable of carrying nuclear weapons to Venezuela.

Accused of corruption by some, Maduro has been resisting pressure to step down as the country’s economy has taken a beating, with its currency in free-fall, hyperinflation and the exodus of over 3 million people into neighboring countries.
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On Friday, the U.S. Treasury Department issued fresh sanctions on Venezuela, with National Security Advisor John Bolton issuing a threat via Twitter.

“To those who are helping send the Venezuelan people’s wealth out of the country to benefit Maduro and his cronies, you are on notice today that the United States is watching,” he wrote.

In addition to levying heavy sanctions on Venezuela’s oil industry and calling on the country’s military elite to turn against Maduro, the Trump administration send convoys of aid to the Colombia-Venezuela border in February.
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This was shortly after Bolton unintentionally disclosed, via a line on a notepad held in plain sight before press cameras, that the United States was considering sending 5,000 troops to the border.

Aid was blocked at the Colombian and Brazilian borders by Venezuelan troops using teargas and force, resulting in two deaths. Since then, the country has been mired in prolonged power and telecom outages that led to schools and hospitals being shut down.

News of the Russian planes landing in Caracas comes the same day Attorney General William Barr confirmed in a bombshell letter that, according to special counsel Robert Mueller, Russians launched an interference campaign during the 2016 campaign meant to swing the outcome of U.S. elections.

Mueller, who was charged with investigating allegations of collusion between President Donald Trump’s campaign and Russian officials, and allegations of obstruction and misconduct by the president, determined that Russian actors successfully staged a disinformation campaign during the lead up to the election and “successfully hacked into computers and obtained emails from persons affiliated with the Clinton campaign and Democratic Party organizations, and publicly disseminated those materials through various intermediaries, including WikiLeaks.”

According to Barr, Mueller’s final report did not find evidence of any American involvement in those acts, either inside or outside the Trump campaign.
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Offline knarf

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Now the Ruskies are in the regime change Biz too!

RE

https://thinkprogress.org/russian-troops-land-in-venezuela-as-us-considers-military-options-59acc24966d3/

Russian troops land in Caracas as US considers military intervention in Venezuela
Pressure mounts on President Maduro to step down.
D. Parvaz
Mar 24, 2019, 5:19 pm   



Soliders keep watch during a rally in Caracas, Venezuela. (PHOTO CREDIT: Valery Sharifulin/TASS/Getty Images.)

Nearly 100 Russian troops have reportedly landed in the Venezuelan capital of Caracas as the United States, which has hinted that a military option is “on the table,” continues to pressure the country’s president to step down.

Reuters reported Sunday that two Russian planes arrived in Caracas on Saturday, one of them thought to have carried Vasily Tonkoshkurov, chief of staff for Russian ground forces.

Neither Venezuelan nor Russian authorities have issued a comment on the flights.

Venezuela and Russia held joint military exercises in January, and Russian President Vladimir Putin has criticized U.S. support for opposition leader Juan Guaido, who has declared himself interim president, as an interventionist.

Moscow has also vowed to step in and prevent “any provocations to shed blood.”
Bolivarian National Guard of Venezuela stand guard at the Francisco de Paula Santander international bridge in Urena, Venezuela on February 24. CREDIT: LUIS ROBAYO/AFP/Getty Images
U.S. hints at military campaign after Venezuelan soldiers reportedly block aid, kill four

This is the latest measure indicating stronger support from Moscow for embattled President Nicolas Maduro’s regime. On Wednesday, Maduro said Russia would be shipping humanitarian aid into Venezuela, which has been suffering from major political and financial upheaval for the last four years.

In December, Russia sent two bomber aircraft capable of carrying nuclear weapons to Venezuela.

Accused of corruption by some, Maduro has been resisting pressure to step down as the country’s economy has taken a beating, with its currency in free-fall, hyperinflation and the exodus of over 3 million people into neighboring countries.
Advertisement

On Friday, the U.S. Treasury Department issued fresh sanctions on Venezuela, with National Security Advisor John Bolton issuing a threat via Twitter.

“To those who are helping send the Venezuelan people’s wealth out of the country to benefit Maduro and his cronies, you are on notice today that the United States is watching,” he wrote.

In addition to levying heavy sanctions on Venezuela’s oil industry and calling on the country’s military elite to turn against Maduro, the Trump administration send convoys of aid to the Colombia-Venezuela border in February.
Advertisement

This was shortly after Bolton unintentionally disclosed, via a line on a notepad held in plain sight before press cameras, that the United States was considering sending 5,000 troops to the border.

Aid was blocked at the Colombian and Brazilian borders by Venezuelan troops using teargas and force, resulting in two deaths. Since then, the country has been mired in prolonged power and telecom outages that led to schools and hospitals being shut down.

News of the Russian planes landing in Caracas comes the same day Attorney General William Barr confirmed in a bombshell letter that, according to special counsel Robert Mueller, Russians launched an interference campaign during the 2016 campaign meant to swing the outcome of U.S. elections.

Mueller, who was charged with investigating allegations of collusion between President Donald Trump’s campaign and Russian officials, and allegations of obstruction and misconduct by the president, determined that Russian actors successfully staged a disinformation campaign during the lead up to the election and “successfully hacked into computers and obtained emails from persons affiliated with the Clinton campaign and Democratic Party organizations, and publicly disseminated those materials through various intermediaries, including WikiLeaks.”

According to Barr, Mueller’s final report did not find evidence of any American involvement in those acts, either inside or outside the Trump campaign.

This the Illuminati's plan to begin a war with the US and Russia, until soon they will begin the nuclear war that will reduce the number left on earth to be 10,000 or something written on some ancient stone.
HUMANS ARE STILL EVOLVING! Our communities blog is at https://openmind693.wordpress.com

 

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