هل مصر ‏‎ ‎جاهزة للحرب؟

د. محمد سيد أحمد

ليست المرة الأولى التي نتحدّث فيها عن دقّ طبول الحرب التي بدأت تتعالى أصواتها في محيطنا المصري، فمنذ بداية أحداث الربيع العربي المزعوم في مطلع العام 2011 وكل ما يحدث سواء بالداخل المصري أو في محيطنا العربي ينبئ بأن هناك حرباً مقبلة لا محالة، وبما أن العدو الأميركي قد خطط أن تكون مصر هي الجائزة الكبرى في مشروعه المزعوم الذي يطلق عليه الشرق الأوسط الكبير أو الجديد فقد بدأت الحرب مبكراً عندما ساند جماعة الإخوان الإرهابيّة لتصدّر المشهد والقفز لسدة الحكم، وكان تحالفه مع هذا التنظيم الإرهابي مبنياً على أساس إيمان هذه الجماعة بأن “الوطن لا يعني الحدود الجغرافية ولا التخوم الأرضيّة إنما الاشتراك في العقيدة” على حد تعبير مؤسس الجماعة في كتابه “رسائل الإمام الشهيد حسن البنا” (صفحة 26).

ومن هنا وجد العدو الأميركي ضالته في تقسيم مصر وتفتيتها بواسطة جماعة إرهابيّة لا تؤمن بفكرة التراب الوطنيّ ولديها استعداد كامل للتفريط في الأرض وهي عقيدة منحرفة مخالفة للعقيدة الوطنية السليمة والتي دفعتنا لدخول حروب كثيرة للدفاع عن التراب الوطني. وبالطبع هذه العقيدة متجذرة وثابتة وراسخة لدى جموع الشعب المصري بشكل عام ولدى جيشنا البطل بشكل خاص. ومن هنا بدأت طبول الحرب تدق في الداخل المصري على شكل حرب أهلية، لكن الجيش المصري العظيم حسم الأمر برمّته في 30 يونيو و3 يوليو 2013 عندما خرجت جموع الشعب مطالبة بإسقاط الجماعة الإرهابية من سدة الحكم، فأعلن انحيازه للوطن ودخل في معركة مباشرة مع الجماعة الإرهابيّة التي حشدت أعضاءها في الداخل، واستدعت أعوانها بالخارج للانتشار على كامل جغرافية سيناء، وتمكن الجيش من حسم معركة الداخل في رابعة والنهضة وكرداسة، وتوجّه إلى سيناء وخاض معارك شرسة استمرت لسبع سنوات تمكّن خلالها من تجفيف منابع الإرهاب على أرض سيناء.

ومع حسم هذه الحرب مع الإرهاب بدأت طبول الحرب تدق من جديد عبر البوابة الغربية لمصر حيث ليبيا العربية التي وقعت فريسة للعدوان الغربي حيث تمّ اجتياحها بواسطة قوات الناتو في العام 2011 وأصبحت ساحة للصراع وهو ما يهدد الأمن القومي المصري بشكل مباشر، وفي الوقت نفسه بدأت طبول الحرب تدق عبر البوابة الجنوبية لمصر، حيث أعلنت أثيوبيا عن مشروع بناء سد النهضة والذي يشكل تهديداً مباشراً لشريان حياة المصريين وهو نهر النيل.

وبعد أن أطاح الجيش المصري بالجماعة الإرهابية بدأت مصر في إدارة ملف الأمن القوميّ المشتعل عبر حدودها الغربية والجنوبية وهى تدرك أن الأعداء يتربّصون بها وبكل خطوة تخطوها نحو تأمين حدودها المشتعلة، فالجميع ينتظر موقف مصر من ليبيا وأثيوبيا وهي الملفات التي يمكن أن تتورط مصر في حرب بسببها وهي غير جاهزة بسبب حربها مع الإرهاب بالداخل.

وهنا قرّرت مصر إدارة الملفين بوعي وهدوء فهي تعلم أن ليبيا قد تحوّلت لساحة صراع دولي ولا توجد قوى واحدة مسيطرة بعد اغتيال الشهيد معمر القذافي، لذلك كان على مصر أن تختار الوقوف بجانب إحدى القوى الموجودة على الأرض، وبالفعل وقفت داعمة للمشير خليفة حفتر الذى يسعى للسيطرة من أجل القضاء على الجماعات الإرهابيّة والحفاظ على ليبيا موحّدة على الرغم من شراسة المعركة، وكان خيار مصر بدعم حفتر من منطلق سيطرته على المنطقة الشرقية الليبية المتاخمة للحدود الغربية المصرية، وعندما تدخلت تركيا لدعم السراج وجماعاته الإرهابيّة، تحركت مصر سريعاً وأعلنت عن مبادرة للحل السياسي وقدّمتها للمجتمع الدولي، وأعلنت أن دخول القوات التركية إلى سرت والجفرة خط أحمر وهو ما يجعل تدخلنا مشروعاً للحفاظ على أمننا القوميّ.

أما ملف سد النهضة والذي يتقاطع مع السودان وإثيوبيا فقد تعاملت مصر معه بوعي وهدوء شديد، فحاولت دائماً إطفاء النيران المشتعلة بالداخل السوداني واستنفدت كل مراحل التفاوض مع إثيوبيا وعندما قرّرت إثيوبيا ملء السد بشكل منفرد من دون التوقيع على اتفاق دولي ملزم وتعالت الأصوات بضرورة ضرب السد وهو ما يعني قيام الحرب قررت مصر الذهاب بالقضية إلى مجلس الأمن ليوقف هذا العدوان على الأمن القومي المصري وإلا سيكون أي تدخل عسكري مصري مشروعاً ولا يمكن أن يواجه بإدانة دولية.

والسؤال المطروح الآن هو هل مصر وهي تدير ملفات الأمن القومي دبلوماسياً وبهدوء وحكمة كبيرة مستعدّة وجاهزة للحرب إذا استنفدت كل الوسائل السلمية ولم يعد أمامها خيار غير الحرب؟

والإجابة القاطعة تقول إن مصر جاهزة لكل الحلول، ففي أعقاب 30 يونيو 2013 بدأ الجيش المصري عملية بناء جديدة حيث تنوعت مصادر السلاح، وحصلت مصر على أسلحة متطورة للغاية، جعلت الجيش المصري يتقدّم للمرتبة التاسعة عالمياً.

ولتأمين حدود مصر الغربية والاستعداد لمواجهة أي خطر مقبل من البوابة الليبية قام الجيش المصري بتشييد قاعدة محمد نجيب العسكرية على مساحة 18 ألف فدان في مدينة الحمام في مرسى مطروح والتي وصفت بأنها أكبر قاعدة عسكرية في أفريقيا والشرق الأوسط والتي استغرق تشييدها عامين وافتتحت في 22 يوليو 2017 لحماية حدود مصر الغربية.

ثم قام الجيش المصري بتشييد قاعدة برنيس العسكرية على مساحة 150 ألف فدان في جنوب شرقي البحر الأحمر لتصبح أكبر قاعدة عسكرية في أفريقيا والشرق الأوسط على الإطلاق وقد تم تشييدها خلال عام واحد فقط وتم افتتاحها في 15 يناير 2020 لحماية حدود مصر الجنوبية.

ومن هنا يتضح كيف تتعامل مصر مع أمنها القومي بوعي وهدوء وتقديم الحلول السياسية والسلمية على الحلول العسكرية، لكن مع الاحتفاظ بحقها في استخدام القوة المشروعة في أي وقت للدفاع عن أمنها القومي. اللهم بلغت اللهم فاشهد.

بعد نهاية التاريخ‎ ‎نهاية أميركا… هكذا تكلّم فوكوياما!‏

محمد صادق الحسيني

لم يكد بريق الذهب يخطف عيني كريستوفر كولومبس في معابد “الهنود” وبيوتهم وزينة نسائهم حتى باح في يومياته (1492) عن رغبته في أن ينكبّ الإسبان 3 سنوات كاملة ومن ثم ميليشيا المستوطنين الانجلو ساكسون من بعدهم برعاية ملكتهم إيزابيلا ومعها البابا في حينه… على حصاد ذهب العالم الجديد… ليكون ضمن العدّة والعتاد اللازم إنفاقها في سبيل تحرير اورشليم، كما يوثق لنا الكاتب والمؤرخ والمحقق السوري الكبير البروفيسور منير العكش في كتابه – تلمود العم سام – عن أميركا المكتشفة صدفة من قبل كريستوفر…!

هذه هي أميركا التي ينتفض ضدها اليوم مواطنوها الجدد وهم من كل الأعراق والألوان والانتماءات تقريباً (عدا البيض الانجلو ساكسون) وهم يصوّبون معاول هدمهم ضدّ تماثيل الرموز المؤسّسة!

فقد جاء في الأخبار في الساعات المنصرمة ما يلي:

قام متظاهرون في مدينة بالتيمور في ولاية ماريلاند الأميركية، برمي تمثال لكريستوفر كولومبوس من قاعدته، وبعد ذلك قاموا بدحرجته إلى الخليج ورموه في مياه المحيط الأطلسي.

حدث ذلك على خلفية إطلاق الألعاب النارية في المدينة، بمناسبة عيد الاستقلال. ويُعدّ هذا التمثال، أحد تماثيل كولومبوس الثلاثة في المدينة.

حدث هذا الأمر بشكل متكرّر في أكثر من مدينة أميركية مع هذا الرمز المقدس لدى الجيل المؤسس لأميركا لكنه الرمز الذي بات مثيراً للجدل إن لم يكن مثيراً للاشمئزاز أيضاً لدى فئة واسعة من الأميركيين، وهو تحوّل مهمّ في العقيدة الوطنية الأميركية..!

وفي واشنطن بالقرب من البيت الأبيض أحرق متظاهرون علم الولايات المتحدة بعد خطاب احتفالي للرئيس دونالد ترامب.

وأظهرت شبكة “إن بي سي” المتظاهرين قرب البيت الأبيض، وهم يحرقون العلم ويردّدون هتافات ضدّ “العبودية والإبادة الجماعية والحرب”…

وأميركا “لم تعد عظيمة على الإطلاق…”!

هذان الخبران ينبغي ان يجعلانا نتنبه لأمر هام ونوعي بدأ يتدحرج كالمدحلة في اللاوعي والوعي الأميركي لا بد من مراقبته بدقة خطوة خطوة…

وهو ما دفع علماء الاجتماع في أميركا والعالم يجمعون بان أميركا القوة العظمى بدأت مسيرة الأفول التاريخية لها رغم كل مظاهر قوتها الشكلية التي لا زالت تحتفظ بها…

نعم أميركا ليست على وشك السقوط قريباً وبسرعة البرق، لكنها لم تعد أميركا التي عرفناها سابقاً أو عرّفت هي عن نفسها، كيف…!؟

يقول الفيلسوف الأميركي الياباني الأصل فوكوياما وهو صاحب مقولة وكتاب نهاية التاريخ التي اشتهرت قبل نحو عقد ونيف من الزمان، وخلاصتها أن تجربة الديمقراطية البشرية تنتهي عند التجربة الأميركية.

باعتبارها نهاية الإنجاز والنبوغ البشريّ وبعدها لا يمكن للعالم أن يقدّم ما هو افضل…!

عاد فوكوياما هذا نفسه، بعد الحوادث الأخيرة في أميركا (التي أعقبت جورج فلويد) ليقول:

إن كل قوة في العالم تعتمد على ثلاثة إمكانات لاستمرار بقائها

الأول نظام الدولة وهو ما سقط بشكل كامل في بلادنا (أميركا) مقابل تحدي فيروس كورونا على عكس ما حصل في دول مثل اليابان وايران والصين التي صمدت دولها أمام هذا التحدّي وقدّمت نموذجا مشجعاً، والكلام لفوكوياما…..!

الإمكانية الثانية وهي الثقة الشعبية وهو ما ظهر أنه يكاد ينعدم وينتهي عند الشعب الأميركي كما حصل في مواجهة حادثة جورج فلويد…!

الإمكانية الثالثة وهي القيادة والهيمنة، فالولايات المتحدة الأميركية فقدت سيطرتها وهيمنتها وقيادتها للعالم على كل الأصعدة اقتصادياً وسياسياً وأمنياً وعسكرياً ومعنوياً…!

انتهى كلام فوكوياما…

من يتابع التحولات الأميركية الاّخيرة بكل المستويات سيلاحظ التالي:

1- أن الشعب الأميركي المنتفض لا يهاجم الشرطة ولا الجيش ولا مؤسسات الدولة إلا ما ندر جداً، لكنه يجمع على مهاجمة الرموز التي صنعت وخلقت وصورت لنا أميركا التي كنا نراها ونعيشها، وآخر المؤشرات على ذلك هو الخبر أعلاه…

أي تماثيل كولومبس والعلم الأميركي وقبل ذلك جورج واشنطن وووو…

أي العبودية والزيف والخداع والحرب والاستكبار والشيطان الذي في داخل “اسرائيل” الأولى أي أميركا…

2- لقد فشل النظام الأميركي من الناحية البنيوية خلال السبعين سنة الماضية التي أعقبت الحرب العالمية الثانية ان يقدم نموذجاً حضارياً اجتماعياً يمكن المراهنة عليه دفاعاً عن طبقات المجتمع المختلفة بعدما حطّم الطبقة الأميركية الوسطى تحطيماً كاملاً وتحوّل الى نظام أقلوي تحكمه الطبقة الأنجلوساكسونية البيضاء الثرية والمتسلطة على ما يزيد على نحو 70 في المئة من السكان المنتمين لأعراق ومجموعات اجتماعية لا تنتمي للعرق الانجلو ساكسوني الابيض، حتى باتت شبه معدمة بالمقارنة مع الثراء الفاحش المتكدس بيد الأقلية الأوليغارشية..

على عكس الصين الشعبية التي نجحت في إعلاء شأن او رفع مستوى نحو 800 مليون مواطن صيني من الفقر لتضعهم على مستوى الطبقة الوسطى..!

3- على مستوى الحضور الأميركي في الموازين الدولية فأميركا ولأول مرة لم تعد الاقتصاد الاول في العالم ولا حتى من الاقتصادات النموذجية التي يشار اليها بالبنان…

لقد بدأت تبيع خاماتها النفطية بطريقة تنافسية متهافتة لتعديل إيراداتها؛ وهو ما ظهر بشكل خاص في زيادة ما مقداره اكثر من 3 ملايين برميل يومياً في محاولة للحاق بالصين وسائر الدول المنافسة لها في الأسواق العالمية…

4- لقد فقدت أميركا نضارتها وحيويتها السياسية كنظام وقدرتها على العطاء او تقديم أي شيء جديد حتى في المثل الديمقراطية التي ظلت تتغنى بها لعقود طويلة…

ان نظرة فاحصة لما يجري مما يمكن تسميته بالطائفية الحزبية مثلاً بين الحزبين الحاكمين يمكننا القول إن النظام السياسي الحاكم لم يعد قادراً حتى ان يتخيل سباقات حزبية ومنافسات سلسة وقانونية معتبرة بين الحزبين الجمهوري والديمقراطي بشكل طبيعي ناهيك عن سماحه أو إتاحته الفرصة لبروز او تبلور تيار او حزب او مرشح ثالث…!

النظام الأميركي اذن بدأ يتآكل ويتصدع في بنيته الاساسية التي بنى عليها كل أوهامه وأطماعه..

نعم قد لا يسقط أمامنا سريعاً..

لكن رحلة أفوله بدأت بالفعل وباعتراف وإجماع كل علماء الاجتماع السياسي العالمي..

أميركا التي عرفناها وهي تتغذّى وترضع من حليب الحروب التي تخوضها بقواتها المقتحمة للأراضي والبحار لم تعد تقوى على الحروب، لقد ودعت الحرب بعد أن فقدت كل أنواع المناعات التي تؤهلها لخوض أي حرب جديدة…

النظام السياسي الأميركي الذي عرفناه حتى الآن بات في عين التحدي والعاصفة داخلياً وخارجياً…

ستنخره “الأرضة” التي نخرت عصا سليمان من الداخل…

هذا هو حال أميركا في هذه اللحظة التاريخيّة…

على مدى أربعة قرون ظلت “فكرة أميركا” تخطف روح كل الشرائع وتطوّعها لأهدافها الامبراطورية الثلاثة التي ورثتها لقاعدتها المتقدّمة “إسرائيل” ألا وهي:

1- اجتياح أرض الغير( الغزو).

2- استبدال سكان الأرض المحتلة بسكان جدد.

3- استبدال ثقافة وتاريخ تلك البلدان بثقافة المحتلين الغرباء وتاريخهم.

هذه الفكرة الأميركية وصلت الى محطتها الأخيرة على ما يبدو، اي الى طريق مسدود وبدأت تفقد بريقها في الداخل قبل الخارج كما يقول فوكوياما.

لذلك كان من الطبيعي أن تظهر بدايات انتفاضة شعبية ضد الرموز وفي مقدمتهم اولئك الذين طمعوا بذهب السكان الأصليين وذهب العالم..

أي كريستوفر كولومبس.

وهذا ما يتوقع ان يمتد قريباً إلى قاعدة أميركا المتقدّمة أي “اسرائيل” الثانية الصغيرة التي زرعوها على يابستنا ومياهنا الفلسطينية العربية…

لقد حان وقت سقوط السامري الذي عبدوه لمدة قرون.

انتهت صلاحيّة أميركا السامرية أو تكاد.

بعدنا طيبين قولوا الله.

A Historical Reminder of What Defines the United States, as Told by a Former Slave. Frederick Douglas (1817-1895)

By Cynthia Chung

Global Research,https://www.globalresearch.ca/historical-reminder-united-states-told-former-slave/5717953 July 07, 2020

Strategic Culture Foundation 

5 July 2020

We live in tumultuous days… one could say “the end of an era”.

It is clear that there is a storm coming, however, the question is will it be the sort of storm that provides sustenance and relief to drought-stricken and barren lands, or will it be the sort of storm that destroys indiscriminately and leaves nothing recognizable in its wake?

There is such a heavy tension in the air, the buildup we are told of centuries of injustice, oppression and murder. It feels like the entire world’s burden has laid itself upon one culprit and that it is high time that that villain pay for past blood spilled.

That villain is the United States.

It is common to hear that this nation was created under the hubristic banner of “Freedom from Empire”, while it brutally owned slaves and committed genocide on the indigenous people. That the “Declaration of Independence” and the “U.S. Constitution” are despicable displays of the highest degree of grotesque hypocrisy, and that in reality the U.S. was to replace one system of empire with another and far worse.

These are weighty charges indeed, and nobody can deny that great crimes against humanity have been committed. However, it is important that we review this history in full, for if we lose sight of the forest, we will be losing sight of an ongoing battle that is still waging.

We will have abandoned the work of past heroes that has been left unfinished and will have replaced it with the false idol of anarchy, mistaking its ‘empty-promises of liberty’ as a mark of what constitutes a ‘true freedom’.

How can we avoid such ‘empty-promises’ and strive for ‘true freedom’?

There is no better account in addressing such a question as that of Frederick Douglass (1817-1895), a former slave who would become an advisor to Abraham Lincoln during the dark days of the Civil War and the Consul General to Haiti in his elder years.

A through-and-through TRUE American hero (1).

From Slavery to Freedom

Frederick Douglass was born in Talbot County, in the State of Maryland. Though it was impossible to know his exact date of birth, he gathers that the month of February 1817 is as accurate as possible. The name given to him by his dear mother was, in the words of Douglass “no less pretentious and long” than Frederick Augustus Washington Bailey (Frederick’s mother was believed to be the only slave in the region who knew how to read).

Frederick recalls that in his youth

“I was just as well aware of the unjust, unnatural, and murderous character of slavery, when nine years old, as I am now. Without any appeals to books, to laws, or to authorities of any kind, to regard God as ‘Our Father’ condemned slavery as a crime.”

Already, by the age of nine, Frederick had set himself upon not only the idea of escape from this destitution, but was always mindful to an education wherever he could find it.

Luckily, in this unhappy state his only adult friend Miss Lucretia, (daughter of Captain Anthony the slaveholder of Frederick), arranged for Frederick, at the age of ten, to be sent away from the plantations to live in Baltimore with her husband’s brother Hugh Auld.

It was in Baltimore that Frederick would learn how to read.

Years go by and at around the age of fifteen or sixteen, Frederick is sent back to the plantations (over a family squabble), and not surprisingly is found to be wholly unfit for a life of hard-labour as an obedient slave. He is thus promptly sent to “Covey, The Negro Breaker” to lodge with for a period of one year.

For six months, Frederick was whipped and beaten on a regular basis. From the dawn of day till the complete darkness in the evening, he was kept hard at work in the fields, and was worked up to the point of his powers of endurance.

Until one day he decides finally that it is better to resist and risk the consequences than continue to live such a contemptible life as a mere brute. He decides one day to simply refuse to be treated as an animal, not to strike back but to oppose the striking.

As Frederick states

A man without force is without the essential dignity of humanity. Human nature is so constituted, that it cannot honor a helpless man, though it can pity him, and even this it cannot do long if signs of power do not arise. He only can understand the effect of this combat on my spirit, who has himself incurred something, or hazarded something, in repelling the unjust and cruel aggressions of a tyrant. Covey was a tyrant and a cowardly one withal. After resisting him, I felt as I had never felt before. It was a resurrection from the dark and pestiferous tomb of slavery, to the heaven of comparative freedom. I was no longer a servile coward, trembling under the frown of a brother worm of the dust, but my long-cowed spirit was roused to an attitude of independence. I had reached the point at which I was not afraid to die. This spirit made me a freeman in fact, though I still remained a slave in form. When a slave cannot be flogged, he is more than half free. He has a domain as broad as his own manly heart to defend, and he is really ‘a power on earth’. From this time until my escape from slavery, I was never fairly whipped. Several attempts were made, but they were always unsuccessful. Bruised I did get, but the instance I have described was the end of the brutification to which slavery had subjected me.”

The Abolitionist Cause in Light of the Preservation of the Union

“…that the fathers of the Republic neither intended the extension nor the perpetuity of slavery and that liberty is national and slavery is sectional.” – Frederick Douglass

To make a long story short, Frederick would successfully escape the South and on September 3rd 1838, arriving in New York at the age of 21, he would finally embark on a life as a free man.

It would be only four or five months living in New Bedford before Douglass would meet William Lloyd Garrison, one of the most prominent leaders of the Abolitionist movement. It did not take long for Douglass to be invited along their speaking tours to recount his story as a runaway slave from the South.

Though Douglass would owe much of his future as a great orator and writer in thanks to his Abolitionist friends who gave him a strong start in this direction and introduced him to many important figures, Douglass would eventually distance himself from the Abolitionist “scripture”.

This distancing was caused by Douglass’ later recognition that there was in fact, no “pro-slavery” character in the U.S. Constitution as Garrison had been stating.Falsifying History on Behalf Of Agendas. “US Civil War was about Money not Slavery”

Douglass states,

After a time, a careful reconsideration of the subject convinced me that there was no necessity for dissolving the union between the northern and southern states, that to seek this dissolution was not part of my duty as an abolitionist, that to abstain from voting was to refuse to exercise a legitimate and powerful means for abolishing slavery, and that the Constitution of the United States not only contained no guarantees in favor of slavery, but, on the contrary, was in its letter and spirit an antislavery instrument, demanding the abolition of slavery as a condition of its own existence as the supreme law of the land.”

During this time, Douglass would start his own anti-slavery newspaper called “The North Star”. Along with this new editorial responsibility, Douglass would no longer leave it to the “good advice” of his “more learned” Abolitionist friends, but would take the responsibility upon himself to seek out and come to know whether such assertions by the Abolitionists on the nature of the Republic were true.

 “My new circumstances compelled me to re-think the whole subject, and to study with some care not only the just and proper rules of legal interpretation, but the origin, design, nature, rights, powers, and duties of civil governments, and also the relations which human beings sustain to it. By such a course of thought and reading I was conducted to the conclusion that the Constitution of the United States – inaugurated to ‘form a more perfect union, establish justice, insure domestic tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general welfare, and secure the blessings of liberty’ – could not well have been designed at the same time to maintain and perpetuate a system of rapine and murder like slavery, especially as not one word can be found in the Constitution to authorize such a belief…the Constitution of our country is our warrant for the abolition of slavery in every state of the Union…being convinced of the fact, my duty upon this point in the further conduct of my paper [The North Star] was plain.”

Abraham Lincoln would be elected as the President of the United States on March 4th, 1861. To which Douglass stated of the occasion:

It was Mr. Lincoln who told the American people at this crisis that the ‘Union could not long endure half slave and half free; that they must be all one or the other, and that the public mind could find no resting place but in the belief in the ultimate extinction of slavery.’ These were not the words of an abolitionist – branded a fanatic, and carried away by an enthusiastic devotion to the Negro – but the calm cool, deliberate utterance of a statesman, comprehensive enough to take in the welfare of the whole country…In a few simple words he had embodied the thought of the loyal nation, and indicated the character fit to lead and guide the country amid perils present and to come.

On Meeting Lincoln

“I still believed, and spoke as I believed, all over the North, that the mission of the war was the liberation of the slave, as well as the salvation of the Union…” – Frederick Douglass

With this newly discovered orientation, Douglass not only put the preservation of the Union as something necessary and expedient but, most importantly, something that could not be sacrificed in striving for the Abolitionist cause.

Douglass would be one of the first to encourage the recruitment, through his paper “The North Star”, of black soldiers to join the Union’s war against the Confederate South. The thought was that by these men joining the war, they would prove their mettle in the cause for emancipation.

These were hard days, since black soldiers were not given equal treatment nor protection in the Union army. They also risked, if captured by the South, being enslaved, a sentence in Douglass’ words “worse than death”. Douglass had been assured that equal treatment would eventually occur, but it was too slow moving in his eyes and he refused to continue recruiting black soldiers into the Union army.

It was at this point that Douglass was invited to meet with President Lincoln to discuss his concerns over the matter.

Douglass describes his first meeting with Lincoln:

I was never more quickly or more completely put at ease in the presence of a great man than in that of Abraham Lincoln…Long lines of care were already deeply written on Mr. Lincoln’s brow, and his strong face, full of earnestness, lighted up as soon as my name was mentioned…I at once felt myself in the presence of an honest man – one whom I could love, honor, and trust without reserve or doubt.

One of the points of concern Douglass discussed with the President, was on the unfair treatment of black soldiers as POWs and suggested that the North should retaliate and commit the same treatment on their Southern POWs to dissuade this unequal treatment, to which Lincoln responded,

Retaliation was a terrible remedy, and one which it was very difficult to apply – that, if once begun, there was no telling where it would end – that if he could get hold of the Confederate soldiers who had been guilty of treating colored soldiers as felons he could easily retaliate, but the thought of hanging men for a crime perpetrated by others was revolting to his feelings…Though I was not entirely satisfied with his views, I was so well satisfied with the man and with the educating tendency of the conflict I determined to go on with the recruiting.

Douglass reflects on his decision:

“It was a great thing to achieve American independence when we numbered three millions, but it was a greater thing to save this country from dismemberment and ruin when it numbered thirty millions. He alone of all our presidents was to have the opportunity to destroy slavery, and to lift into manhood millions of his countrymen hitherto held as chattels and numbered with the beasts of the field.”

The Emancipation Proclamation

“Since William the Silent, who was the soul of the mighty war for religious liberty against Spain and the Spanish Inquisition, no leader of men has been loved and trusted in such generous measures as was Abraham Lincoln.”

– Frederick Douglass

During the third year of the sanguinary Civil War, January 1st 1863, President Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation. Douglass states of the occasion: “the formal and solemn announcement was made that thereafter the government would be found on the side of emancipation…It must be the end of all compromises with slavery – a declaration that thereafter the war was to be conducted on a new principle, with a new aim.

It was at this point that Lincoln received criticism for extending the war unnecessarily. The South was ready to make certain concessions and the North was eager to end the war. By Lincoln announcing the Emancipation Proclamation, it was thought by many to be a reckless provocation making any possibility of peace fruitless.

On this subject, Douglass would meet with Lincoln for the last time, before he would be assassinated.

The main subject on which he wished to confer with me was as to the means most desirable to be employed outside the army to induce the slaves in the rebel states to come within the deferral lines. The increasing opposition to the war, in the North, and the mad cry against it, because it was being made an abolition war, alarmed Mr. Lincoln, and made him apprehensive that a peace might be forced upon him which would leave still in slavery all who had not come within our lines. What he wanted was to make his proclamation as effective as possible in the event of such a peace…He said he was being accused of protracting the war beyond its legitimate object and failing to make peace when he might have done so to advantage. He was afraid of what might come of all these complaints, but was persuaded that no solid and lasting peace could come short of absolute submission on the part of the rebels [the South]…He saw the danger of premature peace…I was the more impressed by this benevolent consideration because he before said, in answer to the peace clamor, that his object was to save the Union, and to do so with or without slavery. What he said on this day showed a deeper moral conviction against slavery than I had ever seen before in anything spoken or written by him. I listened with the deepest interest and profoundest satisfaction, and, at his suggestion, agreed to undertake the organizing of a band of scouts, composed of colored men, whose business should be somewhat after the original plan of John Brown, to go into the rebel states, beyond the lines of our armies, and to carry the news of emancipation, and urge the slaves to come within our boundaries.

…I refer to this conversation because I think that, on Mr. Lincoln’s part, it is evidence conclusive that the proclamation, so far at least as he was concerned, was not effected merely as a [political] ‘necessity’.

President Lincoln would be selected to continue a second term and was inaugurated on March 4th, 1865. About one month after the official end of the Civil War. Lincoln would be assassinated just a mere 41 days after his second inauguration.

Douglass writes, “His first inauguration arrested the fall of the Republic, and the second was to restore it to enduring foundations.” The fact that Lincoln’s leadership was savagely cut short was a tragedy for all who understood that the true foundation of the Republic was built upon the principle “liberty for all”.

In that sad moment, when the country heard of the death of their leader who was to bring them closer to this goal, Douglass states,

“We shared in common a terrible calamity, and this ‘touch of nature made us’ more than countrymen, it made us ‘kin’.”

Reflections on the Past

It is an utmost testament to the grace and nobility of Frederick Douglass’ character that an soon as the law and spirit of slavery had been broken, he made a point to no longer harbour hate and resentment for the past wrongs committed upon himself. He recognised that humanity was indeed inherently good and would ultimately strive towards goodness if left to its natural tendency… that to punish the children of those who committed crimes before them would destroy any good that ever existed in the world.

Douglass recounts,

If any reader of this part of my life shall see in it the evidence of a want of manly resentment for wrongs inflicted by slavery upon myself and race, and by the ancestors of…[those who once owned slaves], so it must be. No man can be stronger than nature, one touch of which, we are told, makes all the world akin. I esteem myself a good, persistent hater of injustice and oppression, but my resentment ceases when they cease, and I have no heart to visit upon children the sins of their father.

I will end here with an account of Douglass when he revisits the place where he was born a “slave” and sees his former “master” Captain Auld, upon his request on his deathbed, after his escape to the North over 25 years ago:

But now that slavery was destroyed, and the slave and the master stood upon equal ground, I was not only willing to meet him, but was very glad to do so…He was to me no longer a slaveholder either in fact or in spirit, and I regarded him as I did myself, a victim of the circumstances of birth, education, law, and custom.

Our courses had been determined for us, not by us. We had both been flung, by powers that did not ask our consent, upon a mighty current of life, which we could neither resist, nor control. By this current he was a master, and I a slave, but now our lives were verging towards a point where differences disappear, where even the constancy of hate breaks down and where the clouds of pride, passion, and selfishness vanish before the brightness of infinite light.

*

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Cynthia Chung is a lecturer, writer and co-founder and editor of the Rising Tide Foundation (Montreal, Canada).

Note

(1) This paper has used Douglass’ account of American history from his writings in his autobiography “Life and Times of Frederick Douglass”, for which the full pdf version can be found here.

Featured image is from Wikimedia CommonsThe original source of this article is Strategic Culture FoundationCopyright © Cynthia ChungStrategic Culture Foundation, 2020

US national media is useless – so tell me the good local news sources?

Source

US national media is useless – so tell me the good local news sources?

July 04, 2020

by Ramin Mazaheri for the Saker Blog

During the recent wave of rebellions in the US I was reminded of just how woefully, woefully inadequate the US nationwide media truly is. I only foresee one solution to ferret out what is truly going on in the United States during the 2020 summer & fall of discontent – going local, nationwide.

(However, I do please need help with this solution – more on that shortly.)

It’s not just CNN, MSNBC, PBS, NPR, etc., but the major city newspapers too, as they are owned by the same corporations/conglomerates, after all. Therefore, tuning into any of these stations/newspapers is to see the same story over and over and over; to watch just one of them is to watch them all, such is their uniformity.

That’s a huge problem in creating a politically-intelligent citizenry.

There is also a significant trend in US newspapers about which I have not read any comment: The New York Times has become not only the nation’s “paper of record” but apparently also a newswire. Look at your major city daily and you’ll likely find that reprints of Times articles are not quite on par with usage of the Associated Press but certainly exceeds the number of Reuters articles.

That’s a significant development for US culture: it certainly increases the amount of NYC-centeredness, something which had already exploded with the advent of cable TV. Using more Times articles also means less space for local coverage (newspaper journalists always view everything as a constant and hierarchical battle for precious inch space, LOL) and thus the local culture suffers from exclusion. Disagree with that? Consider radio:

For much of the 20th century local US musical culture could be rewarded with local #1 hits which were big regionally but never broke nationwide – this fostered a unique local musical arts scene, and explains why US musical culture was so vibrant and diverse in the 20th century. But steady deregulation, beginning with Jimmy Carter, and permitting the rise of media conglomerate domination – sealed by the Clinton administration’s Telecommunications Act of 1996 – immediately resulted in a total stagnation, sameness and dullness in American music (in every genre but country music).

Consider the incredibly banal and unexceptional “Old Town Road” by Lil Nas X – last year it inexplicably became the longest running #1 hit ever in US history – it spent a stunning 19 consecutive weeks at the top of the charts. Some say that Lil Nas X was only so heavily promoted by the media conglomerates because he became the first openly homosexual rapper, but that misses the larger trend: we see that nearly all of the #1 hits which have spent 10 weeks or more on the charts occurred after the Telecommunications Act of 1996 – the main story here is how the cultural omnipresence of media conglomerates has standardised US culture and eliminated once-vibrant regionalisms. What holds true for music holds true for news.

However, it’s quite, quite a change in US newspapers to open one up these days and discover that half the national and world coverage are reprints from The New York Times. Only an idiot would uncritically accept the Times latest allegations based on anonymous AND discredited sources – alleged Russian bounties on US soldiers in Afghanistan – but they did the same thing to provoke Gulf War II, of course.

For real news go local and – surprisingly – go to local public television

If you really want to find some actual current information in the US you have to go to local public TV.

Take Chicago, for example, the 3rd-largest city in the US: The Chicago Tribune did just a terrible job precisely covering the enormous local impact of the Floyd rebellions, rather nullifying the usual consensus that print is more intelligent than TV.

As a journalist whose background is in print please believe that I am usually biased in print’s favor, but there is a reality about print which is rarely stated: the very medium of print lends itself to conservatism when presenting new and urgent issues.

A huge part of this is caused by the “objective” method of reporting so popular in the US – to read the newspaper is to read a “balanced” accounting, but one which is always “balanced” (i.e. censored) in favor of the corporate fascism and capitalism-imperialism upon which the US system is undoubtedly ideologically constructed. Thus, even though for the first time in 50 years Americans were in the street demanding radical changes and revolution the average newspaper was unable to reflect those demands without an omnipresent, and editorially overt, status-quo-loving counterbalance of “many believe these are mere rioters and that it useless to discover if there is a coherent ideology behind their actions”.

Television, contrarily and undoubtedly, can stick a microphone in someone’s face and that person can scream bloody murder – you can’t “balance” that via toning down their sentiments with a rewrite back at the office.

This explains why the only place I found some real discussion about actual issues which truly affect the average person is the local news on the local PBS channel (PBS is the lone public TV channel in the US).

Chicago is an interesting place in the US because it’s the 3rd-largest city but totally absent from US national coverage, which is dominated by NYC, DC and LA. However, to paraphrase the Rolling Stones: win over (understand) Chicago and you win over the bulk of the US. Chicago is the undisputed Qom of neoliberal thought, and yet also gave the world May Day. There’s no doubt that the average American peasant & worker lives/thinks/feels more like a Chicagoan than like any in that trio of rather incredibly resented US cities, so we can somewhat confidently extrapolate the current problems/solutions/rebellions/economic catastrophes seen in Chicago to the myriad of other cities both non-Americans and actual Americans never hear a word about in the national media, such as Cleveland, Tallahassee and Pittsburgh, to say nothing of Oskaloosa, the Quad Cities and anywhere in inland California.

So if you are looking for actual on-the-ground information regarding the US 2020 dystopia and the ongoing Summer of Hate as experienced by the average American, may I recommend you check out WTTW Channel 11 in Chicago – here is the home page for their main news program, Chicago Tonight. I saw their live coverage of the protests and I was surprised at what a solid (but not “leftist great”) job they did. Contrarily, I saw much more cowardice, stupidity and craven compliance from national MSM journalists doing live coverage of the rebellions.

If you watch their “full show” or just certain clips you will find intensely critical local officials & local citizens, honest roundtable discussions, sound bytes which aren’t 5 seconds long, and reporters who actually know and care about what is going on around them – these are all things absent in the national MSM. In 2020 – that’s as precious as gold. They travel all around the near-megalopolis and ask about things like: “How is the Corona hysteria ruining your business?” instead of “How is Russia ruining our country and your life”?

I have no idea why you would ever want to tune into CNN’s Chris Cuomo again: I have never seen any TV journalist use the words “I” and “myself” as often as he does. Rachel Maddow – here’s a minute-by-minute breakdown of her in 2018 and the conclusion was clear: she is not a journalist but an unprincipled propagandist, just like how Tucker Carlson’s lawyer stated last month that his viewers should not expect him to state nor verify truthful facts. The national news of Washington-based PBS or NPR? PBS fails to see the problem with using military brass as foreign policy analysts, LOL, while Neocon Public Radio is the most unabashed proponent of useless & divisive identity politics. Bottom line: if you want to see all of these places at once – just go check out The New York Times.

That is the echo chamber of the modern US – it will make you crazy, and it will certainly make you stupid with identity politics, Trump Derangement Syndrome and Russophobia.

With public TV you can actually find out what is going on with the average American in the average community – turn off the national MSM and go local: it’ll be nice to be reminded that you aren’t alone and that all Americans aren’t totally out of touch.

A request for your help

I don’t recall ever asking readers to share one of my articles, but I wish you would please share this one: I am hoping people can please pass on a truly reliable local TV news source other than in Chicago?

Please comment below if you know of one – I will check the internet and find your comments. If people give enough news sources I will make “Part 2” to this article and list them.

Wouldn’t such a list be really useful? If a munitions plant poisons half of Texas, wouldn’t it be good to have a list at your disposal to find the good local news resource?

During the recent rebellions there were major & unique happenings in places like Minneapolis and Memphis but I could not find a similar news program like Chicago Tonight to really find out the local assessments, problems and proposed solutions.

However, I have already asked dozens of journalists and activists and gotten scant replies – I worry that everybody is glued to the national MSM? Really, you need to learn more about Chris Cuomo’s personal greatness?

Given the current/looming economic disaster, even more than the upcoming presidential election, we really need to find out what the heck is actually going on in the US, no? And we can’t rely on the MSM for that.

So, if you could please pass on a reliable, quality local news recommendation I will be happy to compile them and include them all in an article on this subject in the near future.

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

Corona contrarianism? How about some corona common sense? Here is my list of articles published regarding the corona crisis.

Capitalist-imperialist West stays home over corona – they grew a conscience? – March 22, 2020

Corona meds in every pot & a People’s QE: the Trumpian populism they hoped for? – March 23, 2020

A day’s diary from a US CEO during the Corona crisis (satire) March 23, 2020

– March 25, 2020

Tough times need vanguard parties – are ‘social media users’ the West’s? –

March 26, 2020

If Germany rejects Corona bonds they must quit the Eurozone – March 30,

2020

Landlord class: Waive or donate rent-profits now or fear the Cultural Revolution – March 31, 2020

Corona repeating 9/11 & Y2K hysterias? Both saw huge economic overreactions – April 1, 2020

(A Soviet?) Superman: Red Son – the new socialist film to watch on lockdown – April 2, 2020

Corona rewrites capitalist bust-chronology & proves: It’s the nation-state, stupid – April 3, 2020

Condensing the data leaves no doubt: Fear corona-economy more than the virus – April 5, 2020

‘We’re Going Wrong’: The West’s middling, middle-class corona response – April 10, 2020

Why does the UK have an ‘army’ of volunteers but the US has a shortage? – April 12, 2020

No buybacks allowed or dared? Then wave goodbye to Western stock market gains – April 13, 2020

Pity post-corona Millennials… if they don’t openly push socialism – April 14, 2020

No, the dollar will only strengthen post-corona, as usual: it’s a crisis, after all – April 16, 2020

Same 2008 QE playbook, but the Eurozone will kick off Western chaos not the US – April 18, 2020

We’re giving up our civil liberties. Fine, but to which type of state? – April 20,

2020

Coronavirus – Macron’s savior. A ‘united Europe’ – France’s murderer – April 22, 2020

Iran’s ‘resistance economy’: the post-corona wish of the West’s silent majority (1/2) – April 23, 2020

The same 12-year itch: Will banks loan down QE money this time? – April 26,

2020

The end of globalisation won’t be televised, despite the hopes of the Western 99% (2/2) – April 27, 2020

What would it take for proponents to say: ‘The Great Lockdown was wrong’? – April 28, 2020

ZeroHedge, a response to Mr. Littlejohn & the future of dollar dominance – April 30, 2020

Given Western history, is it the ‘Great Segregation’ and not the ‘Great Lockdown’? – May 2, 2020

The Western 1% colluded to start WWI – is the Great Lockdown also a conspiracy? – May 4, 2020

May 17: The date the Great Lockdown must end or Everything Bubble 2 pops – May 6, 2020

Reading Piketty: Does corona delay the Greens’ fake-leftist, sure-to-fail victory? – May 8, 2020

Picturing the media campaign needed to get the US back to work – May 11, 2020

Scarce jobs + revenue desperation = sure Western stagflation post-corona – May 13, 2020

France’s nurses march – are they now deplorable Michiganders to fake-leftists? – May 15, 2020

Why haven’t we called it ‘QE 5’ yet? And why we must call it ‘QE 2.1’ instead – May 16, 2020

‘Take your stinking paws off me, you damned, dirty public servant!’ That’s Orwell? – May 17, 2021

The Great Lockdown: The political apex of US single Moms & Western matriarchy? May 21, 2021

I was wrong on corona – by not pushing for a US Cultural Revolution immediately – May 25, 2021

August 1: when the unemployment runs out and a new era of US labor battles begin – May 28, 2021

Corona proving the loser of the Cold War was both the USSR & the USA – May 30, 2021

Rebellions across the US: Why worry? Just ask Dr. Fauci to tell us what to do – June 2, 2021

Protesting, corona-conscience, a good dole: the US is doing things it can’t & it’s chaos – June 3, 2021

Why do Westerners assume all African-Americans are leftists? – June 5, 2020

The US as Sal’s Pizzeria: When to ‘Do The Right Thing’ is looting – June 6, 2020

The problem with the various ‘Fiat is all the problem!’ (FIATP) crowds – June 9, 2020

Politicisation of Great Lockdown result of ‘TINA’ economic ignorance & censorship – June 14, 2020

Trump’s only hope: buying re-election with populist jobless benefits – June 16, 2020 (Hey, I took a break since this one – so sue me. And maybe I should retire this list, LOL….)


Ramin Mazaheri is the chief correspondent in Paris for Press TV and has lived in France since 2009. He has been a daily newspaper reporter in the US, and has reported from Iran, Cuba, Egypt, Tunisia, South Korea and elsewhere. He is the author of the books Ill Ruin Everything You Are: Ending Western Propaganda on Red China’ and the NEW Socialisms Ignored Success: Iranian Islamic Socialism.

Lee Camp: How the Media Used the Bounty Scandal to Stop the ‘Threat’ of Peace in Afghanistan

By Lee Camp

Source

Peace seems to have exceedingly, ridiculously, laughably bad timing, this latest time in Afghanistan, says Lee Camp.

This is not a column defending Donald Trump.

Across my career, I have said more positive words about the scolex family of intestinal tapeworms than I have said about Donald Trump. (Scolex have been shown to read more.)

No, this is a column about context. When The New York Times reports anonymous sources from the intelligence community say Russia paid Taliban fighters to kill American soldiers, context is very important.

Some of that context is that Mike Pompeo said, “I was the CIA director – We lied, we cheated, we stole. We had entire training courses.” So we know for certain that U.S. intelligence agencies lie to you and me. We saw it with WMD, and we might be seeing it again now.

But that’s not the context I’m referring to.

We could talk about the context of the fact that the Taliban does not need to be paid to kill American soldiers because their entire goal for the past twenty years has been to kill American soldiers. Paying them a bounty would be like offering the guy sleeping with your wife twenty bucks to sleep with your wife.

But that’s not the context I’m referring to.

We could talk about the fact that the U.S. has been funding the Taliban for years! Yes, we fund them, sometimes arm them, and then fight them. This is barely a secret. So for all intents and purposes, the U.S. does the same thing our corporate media is now accusing Russia of doing (with no proof).

But that’s not the context I’m referring to.

No, the context I’m referring to is how our military industrial complex (with the help of our ruling elite and our corporate media) have stopped Trump from pushing us toward the brink of peace. …Yes, the brink of peace.

Now, I’m not implying Trump is some kind of hippy peacenik. (He would look atrocious with no bra and flowers in his hair.) No, the military under Trump has dropped more bombs than under Obama, and that’s impressive since Obama dropped more bombs than ever before.

However, in certain areas of the world, Trump has threatened to create peace. Sure, he’s doing it for his own ego and because he thinks his base wants it, but whatever the reason, he has put forward plans or policies that go against the military industrial complex and the establishment war-hawks (which is 95 percent of the establishment).

And each time this has happened, he is quickly thwarted, usually with hilarious propaganda. (Well, hilarious to you and me. Apparently believable to people at The New York Times and former CIA intern Anderson Cooper.)

I know four things for sure in life. Paper beats rock. Rock beats scissors. Scissors beat paper. And propaganda beats peace. All one has to do is look at a calendar.

Trump has essentially threatened to create peace or pull U.S. troops out of a war zone in three countries – North Korea, Afghanistan, and Syria. Let’s start with Syria.

April 4, 2018: President Trump orders the Pentagon to plan to withdraw U.S. troops from Syria.

This cannot be allowed because it goes against the U.S. imperial plan. So what happens within days of Trump’s order?

April 7, 2018: Reports surface of a major chemical weapons attack in Douma, Syria.

What are the odds that within days of Trump telling the Pentagon to withdraw, Bashar al-Assad decides to use the one weapon that will guarantee American forces continue attacking him? Assad may not be a chess player, but I also don’t think he ate that many paint chips as a kid. And sure enough, over the past two years we’ve now heard from four whistleblowers at the Organization for The Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) saying the so-called chemical attack didn’t happen. (Notice that the number “four” is even bigger than the numbers “one,” “two,” and “three.”)

But establishment propaganda beats peace any day and twice on Sunday. The false story succeeded in keeping America entrenched in Syria.

The DPRK

Let’s move on to North Korea. As you surely know, Donald Trump “threatened” to create peace with the hermetic country. Simply saying he would attempt such a thing sent weapons contractor stocks tumbling—one of the many reasons peace had to be stopped.

Feb 27, 2019: Donald Trump and North Korea’s Kim Jong Un meet in Vietnam.

The summit fails, and reports begin emerging that Mike Pompeo and John Bolton succeeded in napalming any progress.

March 15, 2019: Pompeo and Bolton deny derailing North Korea nuclear talks.

From The Nation, “There were reports from South Korea that the presence at the talks of John Bolton, Trump’s aggressively hawkish national-security adviser, helped torpedo the talks.“

But just destroying the peace talks wasn’t enough. The American people needed some good, solid propaganda to reassert the idea that Kim Jung Un was a dastardly bloodthirsty dictator.

March 30, 2019: The New York Times reports North Korea executed and purged their top nuclear negotiators.

Yes, apparently Kim Jung Un must’ve fed his top diplomats to his top alligators. Then, two months later we learn…

June 4, 2019: The fate of the North Korean negotiator “executed” after the failed summit “grows murkier” with new reports that he’s still alive.

One would have to say that his being alive does indeed make the report that he’s dead “murkier.” Within the next day or two it becomes quite clear the diplomat is very much in the land of the living. But the propaganda put forward by The New York Times and many other outlets has already done its job.

Far more people saw the reports that the man had been murdered than saw the later retraction. And to this day, the Times has not removed the initial article saying he was executed. Exactly how wrong does propaganda have to be, to warrant an online deletion? Dead versus alive is a pretty binary designation.

And now we get to the outrage du jour, and it’s a bombshell!

Bounties!

May 26, 2020: Pentagon commanders begin drawing up options for an early Afghanistan troop withdrawal, following Trump’s request.

June 16, 2020: “President Donald Trump confirmed in public for the first time his administration’s plans to cut the U.S. military troop presence in Germany from its current level of roughly 35,000 to a reduced force of 25,000.” – ForeignPolicy.com

June 26, 2020: The New York Times reports Russia paid the Taliban to attack U.S. troops. (According to anonymous sources from an intelligence community that proudly admits they lie to us all the time, sometimes just to amuse themselves.)

So when this story first came out, I thought, “You know, Trump has been stopped from withdrawing troops in the past by ridiculous propaganda that seems to land like a giant turd right after he announces his intentions. Maybe I’ll check what happened in the days preceding this jaw-dropping story.”

So just days after Trump goes against the military industrial complex and against the ruling establishment by announcing he’ll be withdrawing about a third of our troops from Germany, and just weeks after announcing an early withdrawal from Afghanistan, a seemingly mind-blowing story drops about Russia paying the Taliban to kill American troops.

This serves to remind everyone what a threat Russia is (so we better put more troops in Germany!) and serves to keep us in Afghanistan (because screw those Russian-funded Taliban!).

Look, I’m not saying Trump is a hero or a great guy or even a man who wants peace. I’m not even saying he’s a man. He very well may be a giant blood-sucking leech in a human skin suit. (A poorly tailored human skin suit.)

All I’m saying is the timing doesn’t add up. Either these landmark stories that destroy every chance of peace are false (in fact we’ve already proven two out of three of them are false), or peace has exceedingly, ridiculously, laughably bad timing.

Germany SITREP: Former German Chancellor Says U.S.-EU Alliance Could Now End

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Germany SITREP: Former German Chancellor Says U.S.-EU Alliance Could Now End

by Eric Zuesse for The Saker Blog

A German equivalent to UK’s Financial Times and America’s Wall Street Journal is the Dusseldorf Handelsblatt or “Commerce Sheet,” which headlined on June 30th, “Former Chancellor Schröder: USA Ending Transatlantic Partnership”.

They reported:

Former German Chancellor Gerhard Schröder has condemned possible new US sanctions against the Nord Stream 2 natural gas pipeline as “deliberate termination of the transatlantic partnership.” A draft law currently under discussion in the US Congress is “a widespread, unjustified attack on the European economy and an unacceptable interference with EU sovereignty and the energy security of Western Europe,” Schröder writes in his statement for a public hearing of the Economic Committee scheduled for Wednesday in the Bundestag.

The article closes:

Schröder sees the relations with the USA as “heavily burdened” by “escalating tariffs and going it alone” policy by the Americans. Schröder writes: “Economic fines against a NATO ally during the current economic recession are nothing other than a deliberate termination of the transatlantic partnership.”

This is as if Jimmy Carter or Barack Obama were to say that EU policymakers had a trade policy toward the U.S. that is so hostile and uncooperative that in order to comply with it, the U.S. would have to subordinate itself to the EU and lose some of its own sovereignty, and as if he were to tell the U.S. Congress that for them to okay the EU’s demands in this matter would be “nothing other than a termination of the transatlantic partnership.”

Congress has not yet passed this legislation (new economic sanctions legislation that is co-sponsored in the U.S. Senate by Republican Ted Cruz and Democrat Jeanne Shaheen) but it (“S.1441 – Protecting Europe’s Energy Security Act of 2019”) enjoys strong bipartisan support and has been considered almost certain to be passed in both houses of the U.S. Congress and signed into law by President Donald Trump. It is not a partisan issue in the United States.

Neither is it partisan in Germany. Both of Germany’s main political Parties (Schröder being SPD) support strongly the Nord Stream 2 natural gas pipeline, which will be considerably more economical for supplying natural gas to the EU than would be the U.S. Government’s demand that American shipped fracked liquified natural gas be used, instead of Russian pipelined natural gas, in Europe. Though this U.S. legislative initiative is called “Protecting Europe’s Energy Security,” its overwhelming support in the U.S. Congress is instead actually for protecting U.S. fracking corporations. The bill’s title is only for ‘patriotic’ propaganda purposes (which is the typical way that legislation is named in the United States — as a sales-device, so as to sound acceptable not only to the billionaires who fund the Parties but also to the voters on election day).

Both of America’s political Parties are significantly funded by America’s domestic producers of fracked gas. One of the few proud achievements of U.S. President Obama that has been proudly continued by President Trump has been their boosting U.S. energy production, largely fracked gas, so as to reduce America’s foreign-trade deficit. However, if this control over the U.S. Government by frackers continues, then there now exists a strong possibility, or even a likelihood, that the transatlantic alliance will end, as a result.

—————

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.

‘The God That Failed’: Why the U.S. Cannot Now Re-Impose Its Civilisational Worldview

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Alastair Crooke

June 29, 2020

The God That Failed': Why The U.S. Cannot Now Re-Impose Its ...

It was always a paradox: John Stuart Mill, in his seminal (1859), On Liberty, never doubted that a universal civilisation, grounded in liberal values, was the eventual destination of all of humankind. He looked forward to an ‘Exact Science of Human Nature’, which would formulate laws of psychology and society as precise and universal as those of the physical sciences. Yet, not only did that science never emerge, in today’s world, such social ‘laws’ are taken as strictly (western) cultural constructs, rather than as laws or science.

So, not only was the claim to universal civilisation not supported by evidence, but the very idea of humans sharing a common destination (‘End of Times’) is nothing more than an apocalyptic remnant of Latin Christianity, and of one minor current in Judaism. Mill’s was always a matter of secularized religion – faith – rather than empiricism. A shared human ‘destination’ does not exist in Orthodox Christianity, Taoism or Buddhism. It could never therefore qualify as universal.

Liberal core tenets of individual autonomy, freedom, industry, free trade and commerce essentially reflected the triumph of the Protestant worldview in Europe’s 30-years’ civil war. It was not fully even a Christian view, but more a Protestant one.

This narrow, sectarian pillar was able to be projected into a universal project – only so long as it was underpinned by power. In Mill’s day, the civilisational claim served Europe’s need for colonial validation. Mill tacitly acknowledges this when he validates the clearing of the indigenous American populations for not having tamed the wilderness, nor made the land productive.

However, with America’s Cold War triumph – that had by then become a cynical framework for U.S. ‘soft power’ – acquired a new potency. The merits of America’s culture, and way of life, seemed to acquire practical validation through the implosion of the USSR.

But today, with America’s soft power collapsed – not even the illusion of universalism can be sustained. Other states are coming forward, offering themselves as separate, equally compelling ‘civilisational’ states. It is clear that even were the classic liberal Establishment to win in the November U.S. elections, America no longer has claim to path-find a New World Order.

Yet, should this secularised Protestant current be over – beware! Because its subterranean, unconscious religiosity is the ‘ghost at the table’ today. It is returning in a new guise.

The ‘old illusion’ cannot continue, because its core values are being radicalised, stood on their head, and turned into the swords with which to impale classic American and European liberals (and U.S. Christian Conservatives). It is now the younger generation of American woke liberals who are asserting vociferously not merely that the old liberal paradigm is illusory, but that it was never more than ‘a cover’ hiding oppression – whether domestic, or colonial, racist or imperial; a moral stain that only redemption can cleanse.

It is an attack – which coming from within – forecloses on any U.S. moral, soft power, global leadership aspirations. For with the illusion exploded, and nothing in its place, a New World Order cannot coherently be formulated.

Not content with exposing the illusion, the woke generation are also tearing down, and shredding, the flags at the masthead: Freedom and prosperity achieved via the liberal market.

‘Freedom’ is being torn down from within. Dissidents from the woke ideology, are being ‘called out’, made to repent on the knee, or face reputational or economic ruin. It is ‘soft totalitarianism’. It recalls one of Dostoevsky’s characters – at a time when Russian progressives were discrediting traditional institutions – who, in a celebrated line, says: “I got entangled in my data … Starting from unlimited freedom, I conclude with unlimited despotism”.

Even ‘science’ has become a ‘God that failed’; instead of being the path to liberty, it has become a dark soulless path toward unfreedom. From algorithms that ‘cost’ the value of human lives, versus the ‘costing’ of lockdown; from secret ‘Black Box’ algos that limit distribution of news and thinking, to Bill Gates’ vaccination ID project, science now portends despotic social control, rather than a fluttering standard, hoist as the symbol of freedom.

But the most prominent of these flags, torn down, cannot be blamed on the woke generation. There has been no ‘prosperity for all’ – only distortions and warped structures. There are not even free markets. The Fed and the U.S. Treasury simply print new money, and hand it out to select recipients. There is no means now to attribute ‘worth’ to financial assets. Their value simply is that which Central Government is willing to pay for bonds, or grant in bail-outs.

Wow. ‘The God who failed’ (André Gide’s book title) – a crash of idols. One wonders now, what is the point to that huge financial eco-system known as Wall Street. Why not winnow it down to a couple of entities, say, Blackrock and KKR (hedge funds), and leave it to them to distribute the Fed’s freshly-printed ‘boodle’ amongst friends? Liberal markets no more – and many fewer jobs.

Many commentators have noted the wokes’ absence of vision for the future. Some describe them in highly caustic terms:

“Today, America’s tumbrils are clattering about, carrying toppled statues, ruined careers, unwoke brands. Over their sides peer those deemed racist by left-wing identitarians and sentenced to cancelation, even as the evidentiary standard for that crime falls through the floor … But who are these cultural revolutionaries? The conventional wisdom goes that this is the inner-cities erupting, economically disadvantaged victims of racism enraged over the murder of George Floyd. The reality is something more … bourgeoisie. As Kevin Williamson observed last week, “These are the idiot children of the American ruling class, toy radicals and Champagne Bolsheviks, playing Jacobin for a while, until they go back to graduate school”.

Is that so? I well recall listening in the Middle East to other angry young men who, too, wanted to ‘topple the statues’; to burn down everything. ‘You really believed that Washington would allow you … in’, they taunted and tortured their leaders: “No, we must burn it all down. Start from scratch”.

Did they have a blueprint for the future? No. They simply believed that Islam would organically inflate, and expand to fill the void. It would happen by itself – of its own accord: Faith.

Professor John Gray has noted “that in The God that failed, Gide says: ‘My faith in communism is like my faith in religion. It is a promise of salvation for mankind’’. “Here Gide acknowledged”, Gray continues, “that communism was an atheist version of monotheism. But so is liberalism, and when Gide and others gave up faith in communism to become liberals, they were not renouncing the concepts and values that both ideologies had inherited from western religion. They continued to believe that history was a directional process in which humankind was advancing towards universal freedom”.

So too with the wokes. The emphasis is on Redemption; on a Truth catharsis; on their own Virtue as sufficient agency to stand-in for the lack of plan for the future. All are clear signals: A secularised ‘illusion’ is metamorphosing back into ‘religion’. Not as Islam, of course, but as angry Man, burning at the deep and dark moral stain of the past. And acting now as purifying ‘fire’ to bring about the uplifting and shining future ahead.

Tucker Carlson, a leading American conservative commentator known for plain speaking, frames the movement a little differently: “This is not a momentary civil disturbance. This is a serious, and highly organized political movement … It is deep and profound and has vast political ambitions. It is insidious, it will grow. Its goal is to end liberal democracy and challenge western civilization itself … We’re too literal and good-hearted to understand what’s happening … We have no idea what we are up against … These are not protests. This is a totalitarian political movement”.

Again, nothing needs to be done by this new generation to bring into being a new world, apart from destroying the old one. This vision is a relic – albeit secularised – of western Christianity. Apocalypse and redemption, these wokes believe, have their own path; their own internal logic.

Mill’s ‘ghost’ is arrived at the table. And with its return, America’s exceptionalism has its re-birth. Redemption for humankind’s dark stains. A narrative in which the history of mankind is reduced to the history of racial struggle. Yet Americans, young or old, now lack the power to project it as a universal vision.

‘Virtue’, however deeply felt, on its own, is insufficient. Might President Trump try nevertheless to sustain the old illusion by hard power? The U.S. is deeply fractured and dysfunctional – but if desperate, this is possible.

The “toy radicals, and Champagne Bolsheviks” – in these terms of dripping disdain from Williamson – are very similar to those who rushed into the streets in 1917. But before dismissing them so peremptorily and lightly, recall what occurred.

Into that combustible mass of youth – so acultured by their progressive parents to see a Russian past that was imperfect and darkly stained – a Trotsky and Lenin were inserted. And Stalin ensued. No ‘toy radicals’. Soft became hard totalitarianism.

In tortured logic, Trump begs for a do-over on the Iran nuclear deal

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Written by Tyler Cullis and Trita Parsi

Even the Trump administration seems to grudgingly have concluded that breaching the Iran nuclear deal (JCPOA) was a mistake. More than two years after the U.S. exit, the deal still stands while the Trump administration is running out of options to force a re-negotiation. It is now so desperate it is seeking to convince the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) that it never quit the deal in the first place. The lesson to the U.S. is clear: Diplomatic vandalism carries costs — even for a superpower. The lesson to a prospective President Joe Biden is more specific: Rejoin the nuclear deal, don’t try to renegotiate it.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo claims that UNSC Resolution 2231 defines the term “JCPOA participant” to be inclusive of the United States, and nothing the United States could do or has done can change this supposed legal fact.  According to Pompeo, even though the Trump administration repeatedly referred to its “withdrawal” from the JCPOA as a “cessation of its participation” in the agreement, UNSCR 2231 continues to define the United States as a “JCPOA participant” that can invoke the resolution’s sanctions snapback mechanism. 

The snapback permits a “JCPOA participant” to provide notification to the Security Council of a case of significant non-performance by a party to the agreement, triggering the automatic re-institution of former Security Council sanctions resolutions targeting Iran. No Russian or Chinese veto can prevent the reimposition of the sanctions contained in those resolutions. Only a resolution agreed to within 30 days that would undo the snapback — but the U.S. has the ability to veto such a resolution.

This is why the Obama administration cherished the snapback — if Iran were to renege on its nuclear commitments, the reimposition of sanctions would be swift and automatic. 

But this leverage was lost when Trump abandoned the deal in 2018 (the Presidential memoranda announcing the decision was even titled “Ceasing U.S. Participation in the JCPOA”). A senior Iranian diplomat told us at the time that Tehran was shocked that Trump would forgo this advantage. 

Now Trump is begging for a do-over. Despite the legal debate over Pompeo’s interpretation of UNSCR 2231, Trump’s gambit will prove less a legal question than a political one. The issue is not so much whether the United States remains a “JCPOA participant,” but whether the other members of the Security Council — and most prominently, its permanent members — will recognize the United States as such and allow Trump to issue a reverse veto to ensure the full re-imposition of U.N. sanctions on Iran. 

That is less likely to happen — and for an obvious reason: the Trump administration has spent the last three years squandering any international goodwill towards the United States, abandoning international agreements, strong-arming allies, and cozying up to dictators. It has threatened and cajoled its European allies to abandon legitimate trade with Iran or risk the wrath of punishing U.S. sanctions — all for the purpose of killing a fully functioning nuclear agreement that Europe views as essential to its security. Trump will need the sympathy of Europe’s permanent members to the Security Council. But no sympathy is likely to be forthcoming.

But even if Europe were to succumb to Trump’s pressure, it is unclear what objectives stand to be achieved. If, as Trump and his allies fear, a Biden administration would rejoin the nuclear accord, the snapback of U.N. sanctions is unlikely to pose a significant impediment to doing so, other than raising the cost to the United States for a return to the JCPOA. Nothing would prevent a President Biden to support the immediate reinstitution of UNSCR 2231. 

The danger, instead, is that Iran, having witnessed the malicious use of the snapback, will demand that any future resolution drop the snapback procedure. Considering that Iran will be weighing the merits of leaving the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty (NPT) and terminating its safeguards agreement with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) as a result of the U.N. snapback, the Biden administration would likely be forced to choose between eating that cost or escalating militarily against Iran in its first months in office. 

This underscores the real reason for Trump’s move: the U.S. is out of leverage when it comes to Iran. While U.S. sanctions have decimated Iran’s economy, they have not forced Iran to accede to Trump’s demands. Iran has neither begged for talks nor abandoned the JCPOA. Its posture remains essentially the same, immune to Trump’s best efforts to cause it to lash out to international approbation. 

Though immense pain, Iran has sapped the U.S. of its leverage while keeping its own intact. Tehran can (and has) scale back its commitments to the JCPOA in response to Trump’s actions, it can abandon the JCPOA or even withdraw from the NPT and terminate its safeguards agreement with the IAEA. These, and other options, remain in Iran’s arsenal, unused for the time being but ready to be deployed should the U.S. continue on its path of diplomatic vandalism. 

This is why Biden must dispel with any illusion that he can seek a renegotiation of the JCPOA on the back of Trump’s sanctions. If a Biden administration were to signal to Tehran that it will not seek a clean return to the JCPOA, then Iran will begin using the leverage it has kept in store.

If Trump succeeds in snapping back U.N. sanctions, Biden would not even be able to leverage the risk to Iran in international isolation, as Iran would be already isolated internationally by virtue of the U.N. sanctions. Biden’s sole recourse would be to threaten war with Iran — a terrible prospect for an incoming administration that will be fighting off a deadly pandemic, resuscitating a depressed economy, and operating under the promise of being different from Trump.

Trump overplayed his hand by thinking he could renegotiate the nuclear deal and is now begging for a do-over. Candidate Biden should take note and signal clearly already now that he does not intend to repeat this mistake.

Iran Issues Arrest Warrant for Trump Over Assassinating Martyr Soleimani

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Iran Issues Arrest Warrant for Trump Over Assassinating Martyr Soleimani

By Staff, Agencies

Iran issued an arrest warrant and asked the Interpol for help in detaining US President Donald Trump and dozens of others involved in carrying out the drone strike that assassinated the Islamic Revolution Guard Corps [IRGC] Quds Force Commander Lieutenant General Qassem Soleimani while on an official visit to the Iraqi capital city of Baghdad.

Tehran prosecutor Ali Alqasimehr said on Monday that Trump, along with more than 30 others Iran accuses of involvement in the January 3 attack that killed General Soleimani, face “murder and terrorism charges”, the semi-official ISNA news agency reported.

Alqasimehr did not identify anyone else sought other than Trump, but stressed Iran would continue to pursue his prosecution even after his presidency ends.

The Interpol, based in Lyon, France, did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Alqasimehr was also quoted as saying that Iran had requested a “red notice” be put out for Trump and the others, the highest-level notice issued by Interpol, requesting that seeks the location and arrest of the individual named.

Under a red notice, local authorities make the arrests on behalf of the country that requested it. The notices cannot force countries to arrest or extradite suspects, but can put government leaders on the spot and limit suspects’ travel.

After receiving a request, Interpol meets by committee and discusses whether or not to share the information with its member states. Interpol has no requirement for making any of the notices public, though some do get published on its website.

It is unlikely the Interpol would grant Iran’s request as its guideline for notices forbids it from “undertaking any intervention or activities of a political” nature.

The US killed General Soleimani along with the Iraqi paramilitary group Hashd al-Shaabi second-in-command Hajj Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis and their companions in the January attack near Baghdad International Airport.

Trump confessed at the time of crime that the airstrike was carried out upon his direct order.

صيف ساخن بين “قيصر” والكيان

د. عمران زهوي

القطب الأوحد وسيّد العالم كما يقدّم نفسه حاول فرض شروطه وإملاءاته على إيران، ففوجئ بدولة تتمرّد وتغرّد خارج السرب، فتيقّن أنّ إيران ليست كالدول العربية أو غيرها ممن ينصاعون بالكلمة للأميركي، فسقطت أغلى وأهمّ طائرة أميركية مُسيّرة، ثم تبعتها الهيمنة على المضيق وفرض الشروط الإيرانية، وصولاً الى ضرب قاعدة “عين الأسد”، وأخيراً وليس آخراً فكّ الحصار عن فنزويلا وعن سورية.

اختلّ توازن ترامب ليخسر بالنقاط، وانكسرت شوكته في غرب آسيا والمحور.

فحاول الأميركي النزول إلى الحلبة مجدّداً بيده أسلحة ستقوّض المحور وتجوّع شعوبه وقواعده الشعبية عبر الحصار الاقتصادي، رامياً كلّ ما في جعبته، معتقداً أنّ “قيصر” هو السيف الذي سيقطع به رأس المحور، فانبرى له رأس الحربة في المحور مفاجئاً بهجوم سيسجله التاريخ قائلاً إننا هنا… نمسك رغيف الخبز بيد والبندقية باليد الأخرى و”سنقتلكم”.

رامياً أحجيات على الامبرالية الصهيوأميركيه أن تحلها علّها تنجو أو تتفادى الزلزال الآتي…؟!

انهمك المحللون والتابعون والخائفون حتى طال التخبّط سفيرة أميركا في لبنان لتردّ بالمباشر على خطاب رأس الحربة (وهي سابقه في التاريخ).

لا شك انّ المهزوم هو من يسعى بأيّ وسيلة لكي يردّ اعتباره، والمنتصر هو الذي يذكّر بأنه قادر على القتل مرة أخرى حتى الوصول إلى الهدف المنشود.

فجاءت النصيحة من السفير الروسي لدى الكيان بأنّ عقوبات “قيصر” على سورية وخطّة ضمّ أراض واسعة من الضّفة الغربيّة المُزمع البدء بتنفيذها الشهر المقبل، وضمّ غور الأردن، كلها خطوات ستكون لها تداعيات خطيرة جداً على “إسرائيل” نفسها، مُسدياً نصائح لرئيس حكومة العدو ولقادة تل أبيب، بالتوقّف مليّاً وباهتمام أمام رسائل السيد نصرالله، وتجنّب أيّ استفزاز جوّي جديد ضدّ سورية “لأنّ هذه المرحلة مختلفة تماماً”.

هذه الرسائل لا تعني فقط إسقاط طائرات إسرائيلية، وإنما هي الوجبه الدسمة التي ستنزل صواعق في الصندوقة الانتخابية الأميركية وستؤدّي إلى زلزال سيطيح بترامب في السباق الرئاسي هو وصول توابيت جنوده إما من الشمال السوري أو من العراق أو من دول الخليج التي تحمل على أرضها القواعد العسكرية الأميركية، والتي هي كلها تحت مرمى الصواريخ البالستية وتحت وطأة أقدام المقاتلين الأشداء لهذا المحور…

وعند اندلاع الانتفاضة الفلسطينية المقبلة التي لن تشبه مثيلاتها بوجود هذا المحور الذي لن يقف مكتوف الأـيدي، خاصة بعدما انكشف المخطط الداخلي اللبناني الذي كان يحاول خلق الفتنة والتجييش والمطالبة بسحب سلاح المقاومة من قبل قطيع الغنم الذي يديرونه، وقبيل الانتخابات السورية العام المقبل، والتلويح من الأمين العام للأمم المتحدة أنطونية غوتيريش بتعديل مهام قوات اليونفيل في لبنان (أيّ يقصد توسيع صلاحياتها لتشمل الحدود السورية اللبنانية.

فالواضح انّ قانون قيصر والقوانين كلها ستكون وبالاً وبلاء على الطفل المدلل (الكيان الغاصب). فالمقاومة وسورية وحلفاؤهما قرّروا اللعب فوق الطاولة وقلب هذه الطاولة على “الإسرائيليّ”، والنّفاذ من خلال ذلك للقضاء على حرب التجويع الجديدة والإنتصار عليها وعلى كلّ مَن شارك أو يشارك فيها.

بناء على كلّ ما تقدّم أكاد أجزم بأنّ الأسابيع المقبلة ستكون حافلة بالتطورات المفاجئة والمتلاحقة في المنطقة، ستُتوّج بإنجاز “استراتيجي” غير مسبوق للمقاومة سيجبر ترامب وإدارته على اتخاذ قرار مفاجئ بمنزلة “هدف ذهبي” لصالح سورية ولبنان، ويشكّل باكورة مفاجآت محور المقاومة في الحرب الإقتصادية المفروضة عليهم.

من هنا شكراً “قانون قيصر” لأنك ستجبر المحور أن يغيّر قواعد اللعبة وأن يكشر عن أنيابه باكراً ليغرسها في أعناق “الإسرائيلي” وترامب على حدّ سواء.

THE CHALLENGES AND OPPORTUNITIES OF THE EMERGING NEW WORLD ORDER

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Source: New Eastern Outlook

By James O’Neill
One of the many difficulties in interpreting the statements of United States President Donald Trump is to decide what category to put his many statements (and even more prolific tweets) in.

Is it another thought bubble similar to his pronouncements on a cure for COVID-19 that was more likely to kill rather than to cure those who followed his advice? Is the latest pronouncement said with an eye to his re-election this coming November, to be discarded once that hurdle has been passed?

The answer to that question is perhaps best found by looking at his track record over the past 3 ½ years. There have been many pronouncements in the foreign policy field, but vanishingly small achievements have followed. The much-heralded nuclear deal with North Korea is one of the latest to fall by the wayside with North Korea’s president Kim announcing a resumption of nuclear testing.

Kim’s cited reason was the total absence of any concrete moves by the United States in settling their multiple outstanding issues. Kim noted, with some justification, that Trump’s negotiating technique was to demand concessions from the North Koreans which had to be fulfilled before the US would make any moves itself, such as reducing troop numbers in South Korea, or ceasing its economic warfare on the North.

It is a well-established principle that what a person does is a much more reliable indicator of future behaviour than what they say. Since becoming president, Trump has withdrawn from, or announced the United States’ intention of withdrawing from, a significant number of major treaties. These included, a by no means exhaustive list, the nuclear arms deal with Iran negotiated with the other United Nations Security Council permanent members plus Germany and European Union; the International Postal Union; the Paris climate agreement; the Trans-Pacific Partnership; UNESCO; and the Human Rights Council.

Whatever else these moves may mean; they are not the actions of a country committed to solving international problems in a multi-national format. Given this track record over the past 3+ years there is no basis for believing that they are temporary measures designed only to enhance Trump’s re-election prospects. Rather the attitude has been, “as long as you do what we want, we will stay.”

Given also the lack of any serious opposition to these moves in the US Senate or his putative presidential opposition candidate Joe Biden, it is probably safe to assume that these moves reflect a broader US approach to multilateral relations. That is, “as long as you do what we want we will stay” in any given organisation.

The reaction to unfavourable decisions by international bodies does however go further. The International Criminal Court (that the United States does not belong to) recently announced it was reopening its investigation into war crimes committed by the United States (and its allies) in Afghanistan. One might argue that this is long overdue, given that these alleged crimes have been a feature of the long 18+ years of warfare carried out on that country. This is before one even begins to contemplate the manifest lies on which the original invasion was based.

Trump’s reaction to the ICC announcement was to threaten both the organisation and its investigating staff, implying a military response if they had the temerity to indict any Americans for war crimes. The principles established in the Nuremberg and Tokyo war crimes trials are, it seems, but an historical aberration when even the investigation of what are, in reality, well documented crimes, invokes such a lawless and violent response.

It is in this context that one has to look at Trump’s sudden enthusiasm for an arms control treaty with Russia. This is the topic to be discussed at the forthcoming meeting between the United States and Russian representatives at a 22 June 2020 meeting in Vienna.

There are a number of ways to interpret the United States’ sudden enthusiasm for an agreement with Russia. The first and most obvious is that it is that the United States has realised that the modern Russian arsenal, partially detailed in President Putin’s March 2018 speech to the Russian parliament, is vastly superior to anything in the United States arsenal and that gap is unlikely to narrow, little alone close, for the foreseeable future.

The Russian (but United States resident) writer and military analyst Andre Martyanov is particularly scathing on this point, both in his books and all his website.

While that is possibly part of Trump’s motivation, this is far from being the whole explanation. One has only to look at the continuing role of the United States in Ukraine, not to mention the farcical trial of four alleged perpetrators of the shooting down of MH 17 (three Russians and one Ukrainian) to gauge a measure of United States sincerity.

Far more likely a motive is that Trump is using the meeting as part of his much wider campaign of trying to disrupt the burgeoning Russia China partnership that is going from strength to strength. Trump wants a new deal on nuclear arms that includes China, but he is silent on the other nuclear powers (Great Britain, India, France, Pakistan and Israel) all of whom have a similar or greater number of nuclear weapons than China.

China has long since passed the United States as the world’s largest economy in terms of parity purchasing power. It has formed a close and growing relationship with Russia, not only in its huge Belt and Road Initiative (with now more than 150 countries) but in a series of other organisations such as the Shanghai Corporation Organisation and ASEAN that is presenting a radically different model of economic co-operation and development than the exploitative western model that has dominated for the past 300 years.

This threat to the United States’ self-defined role as the world’s dominant power did not commence during Trump’s presidency, and the United States reaction to it will not cease with the ending of that presidency, either at the end of this year or in four years’ time. If Biden wins in November, we may be spared the endless tweets and bombastic behaviour, but it would be naïve to anticipate any significant change in United States foreign policy.

Therein lies the greatest danger to world peace. The likely future trends arising out of the growing might of China and its relationship with Russia have recently been analysed by the imminent Russian academic Sergey Karaganov. His analysis of the developing China Russia relationship and its geopolitical implications was recently published in an Italian outlet and conveniently summarised in English by Pepe Escobar in his article “Russia Aiming to Realise Greater Eurasian Dream”.

Karaganov argues that Russia’s growing relationship with China represents a wholly new non-aligned movement centred in the greater Eurasian landmass. Unlike the British and the later United States models which depended on invasion, occupation and exploitation of the natural resources of the conquered nations, the new Eurasian model is much more likely to recognise the individual rights and aspirations of the participating nations and pursue policies of mutual benefit.

None of which is seen as other than a threat to the United States and the model it seeks to impose upon the world. Trump’s recent gestures towards Russia need to be interpreted in that light. The United States has no genuine interest in the welfare and prosperity of either Russia or China. Rather, they exist as pieces to be used in the United States version of the world chess board, manipulated to try and maintain the old model of Western, and in particular, United States dominance.

The reluctance of a growing number of European countries to subscribe to that version is more apparent by the day. Therein lies the challenge, the prospect for a better future for the countries joining the pivot to the east, and the greatest danger from a desperate United States unwilling to acknowledge that its days of dominance are rapidly disappearing.

As the Indian commentator M.K. Bhadrakumar says: “Trump’s diatribe against the ICC exposes the hypocrisy of American policies, which keeps blabbering about a rules based international order while acting with impunity whenever it chooses, for geopolitical reasons.” He cites examples and then concludes that “America under Trump has now become the rogue elephant in the international system.” That is, with respect, a perfect summation of where we are at present.

Galloway Free word: Racism in America

Related

Victoria Nuland Alert

The foreign interventionists really hate Russia

PHILIP GIRALDI • JUNE 23, 2020 

It is difficult to find anything good to say about Donald Trump, but the reality is that he has not started any new wars, though he has come dangerously close in the cases of Venezuela and Iran and there would be considerable incentive in the next four months to begin something to bolster his “strong president” credentials and to serve as a distraction from coronavirus and black lives matter.

Be that as it may, Trump will have to run hard to catch up to the record set by his three predecessors Bill Clinton, George W. Bush and Barack Obama. Bush was an out-and-out neoconservative, or at least someone who was easily led, including in his administration Donald Rumsfeld, Richard Perle, Michael Ledeen, Reuel Gerecht, Paul Wolfowitz, Doug Feith, Eliot Abrams, Dan Senor and Scooter Libby. He also had the misfortune of having to endure Vice President Dick Cheney, who thought he was actually the man in charge. All were hawks who believed that the United States had the right to do whatever it considered necessary to enhance its own security, to include invading other countries, which led to Afghanistan and Iraq, where the U.S. still has forces stationed nearly twenty years later.

Clinton and Obama were so-called liberal interventionists who sought to export something called democracy to other countries in an attempt to make them more like Peoria. Clinton bombed Afghanistan and Sudan as a diversion when the press somehow caught wind of his arrangement with Monica Lewinsky and Obama, aided by Mrs. Clinton, chose to destroy Libya. Obama was also the first president to set up a regular Tuesday morning session to review a list of American citizens who would benefit from being killed by drone.

So the difference between neocons and liberal interventionists is one of style rather than substance. And, by either yardstick all-in-all, Trump looks pretty good, but there has nevertheless been a resurgence of neocon-think in his administration. The America the exceptional mindset is best exemplified currently by Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, who personifies the belief that the United States is empowered by God to play only by its own rules when dealing with other nations. That would include following the advice that has been attributed to leading neocon Michael Ledeen, “Every ten years or so, the United States needs to pick up some small crappy little country and throw it against the wall, just to show the world we mean business.

One of the first families within the neocon/liberal interventionist firmament is the Kagans, Robert and Frederick. Frederick is a Senior Fellow at the neocon American Enterprise Institute and his wife Kimberly heads the bizarrely named Institute for the Study of War. Victoria Nuland, wife of Robert, is currently the Senior Counselor at the Albright Stonebridge Group and a Nonresident Senior Fellow at the Brookings Institution. That means that Victoria aligns primarily as a liberal interventionist, as does her husband, who is also at Brookings. She is regarded as a protégé of Hillary Clinton and currently works with former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright, who once declared that killing 500,000 Iraqi children using sanctions was “worth it.” Nuland also has significant neocon connections through her having been a member of the staff assembled by Dick Cheney.

Nuland, many will recall, was the driving force behind efforts to destabilize the Ukrainian government of President Viktor Yanukovych in 2013-2014. Yanukovych, an admittedly corrupt autocrat, nevertheless became Prime Minister after a free election. Nuland, who was the Assistant Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs at the State Department, provided open support to the Maidan Square demonstrators opposed to Yanukovych’s government, to include media friendly appearances passing out cookies on the square to encourage the protesters.

Nuland openly sought regime change for Ukraine by brazenly supporting government opponents in spite of the fact that Washington and Kiev had ostensibly friendly relations. It is hard to imagine that any U.S. administration would tolerate a similar attempt by a foreign nation to interfere in U.S. domestic politics, particularly if it were backed by a $5 billion budget, but Washington has long believed in a global double standard for evaluating its own behavior.

Nuland is most famous for her foul language when referring to the potential European role in managing the unrest that she and the National Endowment for Democracy had helped create in Ukraine. For Nuland, the replacement of the government in Kiev was only the prelude to a sharp break and escalating conflict with the real enemy, Moscow, over Russia’s attempts to protect its own interests in Ukraine, most particularly in Crimea.

And make no mistake about Nuland’s broader intention at that time to expand the conflict and directly confront Russia. In Senate testimony she cited how the administration was “providing support to other frontline states like Moldova and Georgia.” Her use of the word “frontline” is suggestive.

Victoria Nuland was playing with fire. Russia, as the only nation with the military capability to destroy the U.S., was and is not a sideshow like Saddam Hussein’s Iraq or the Taliban’s Afghanistan. Backing Moscow into a corner with no way out by using threats and sanctions is not good policy. Washington has many excellent reasons to maintain a stable relationship with Moscow, including counter-terrorism efforts, and little to gain from moving in the opposite direction. Russia is not about to reconstitute the Warsaw Pact and there is no compelling reason to return to a Cold War footing by either arming Ukraine or permitting it to join the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO).

Victoria Nuland has just written a long article for July/August issue of Foreign Affairsmagazine on the proper way for the United States manage what she sees as the Russian “threat.” It is entitled “How a Confident America Should Deal With Russia.” Foreign Affairs, it should be observed, is an establishment house organ produced by the Council on Foreign Relations which provides a comfortable perch for both neocons and liberal interventionists.

Nuland’s view is that the United States lost confidence in its own “ability to change the game” against Vladimir Putin, who has been able to play “a weak hand well because the United States and its allies have let him, allowing Russia to violate arms control treaties, international law, the sovereignty of its neighbors, and the integrity of elections in the United States and Europe… Washington and its allies have forgotten the statecraft that won the Cold War and continued to yield results for many years after. That strategy required consistent U.S. leadership at the presidential level, unity with democratic allies and partners, and a shared resolve to deter and roll back dangerous behavior by the Kremlin. It also included incentives for Moscow to cooperate and, at times, direct appeals to the Russian people about the benefits of a better relationship. Yet that approach has fallen into disuse, even as Russia’s threat to the liberal world has grown.”

What Nuland writes would make perfect sense if one were to share her perception of Russia as a rogue state threatening the “liberal world.” She sees Russian rearmament under Putin as a threat even though it was dwarfed by the spending of NATO and the U.S. She shares her fear that Putin might seek “…reestablishing a Russian sphere of influence in eastern Europe and from vetoing the security arrangements of his neighbors. Here, a chasm soon opened between liberal democracies and the still very Soviet man leading Russia, especially on the subject of NATO enlargement. No matter how hard Washington and its allies tried to persuade Moscow that NATO was a purely defensive alliance that posed no threat to Russia, it continued to serve Putin’s agenda to see Europe in zero-sum terms.”

Nuland’s view of NATO enlargement is so wide of the mark that it borders on being a fantasy. Of course, Russia would consider a military alliance on its doorstep to be a threat, particularly as a U.S. Administration had provided assurances that expansion would not take place. She goes on to suggest utter nonsense, that Putin’s great fear over the NATO expansion derives from his having “…always understood that a belt of increasingly democratic, prosperous states around Russia would pose a direct challenge to his leadership model and risk re-infecting his own people with democratic aspirations.”

Nuland goes on and on in a similar vein, but her central theme is that Russia must be confronted to deter Vladimir Putin, a man that she clearly hates and depicts as if he were a comic book version of evil. Some of her analysis is ridiculous, as “Russian troops regularly test the few U.S. forces left in Syria to try to gain access to the country’s oil fields and smuggling routes. If these U.S. troops left, nothing would prevent Moscow and Tehran from financing their operations with Syrian oil or smuggled drugs and weapons.”

Like most zealots, Nuland is notably lacking in any sense of self-criticism. She conspired to overthrow a legitimately elected democratic government in Ukraine because it was considered too friendly to Russia. She accuses the Kremlin of having “seized” Crimea, but fails to see the heavy footprint of the U.S. military in Afghanistan and Iraq and as a regional enabler of Israeli and Saudi war crimes. One wonders if she is aware that Russia, which she sees as expansionistic, has only one overseas military base while the United States has more than a thousand.

Nuland clearly chooses not to notice the White House’s threats against countries that do not toe the American line, most recently Iran and Venezuela, but increasingly also China on top of perennial enemy Russia. None of those nations threaten the United States and all the kinetic activity and warnings are forthcoming from a gentleman named Mike Pompeo, speaking from Washington, not from “undemocratic” leaders in the Kremlin, Tehran, Caracas or Beijing.

Victoria Nuland recommends that “The challenge for the United States in 2021 will be to lead the democracies of the world in crafting a more effective approach to Russia—one that builds on their strengths and puts stress on Putin where he is vulnerable, including among his own citizens.” Interestingly, that might be regarded as seeking to interfere in the workings of a foreign government, reminiscent of the phony case made against Russia in 2016. And it is precisely what Nuland did in fact do in Ukraine.

Nuland has a lot more to say in her article and those who are interested in the current state of interventionism in Washington should not ignore her. Confronting Russia as some kind of ideological enemy is a never-ending process that leaves both sides poorer and less free. It is appropriate for Moscow to have an interest in what goes on right on top of its border while the United States five thousand miles away and possessing both a vastly larger economy and armed forces can, one would think, relax a bit and unload the burden of being the world’s self-appointed policeman.

Philip M. Giraldi, Ph.D., is Executive Director of the Council for the National Interest, a 501(c)3 tax deductible educational foundation (Federal ID Number #52-1739023) that seeks a more interests-based U.S. foreign policy in the Middle East. Website is https://councilforthenationalinterest.org, address is P.O. Box 2157, Purcellville VA 20134 and its email is inform@cnionline.org.

AMERICA WITHOUT THE SUGAR COATING: WISHING ILL WILL ON OUR WORLD

Source

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As an American, it’s hard to admit things are not as they seem. Democracy, that ideal we were taught as children to worship, it turns out to be only a fancy idea. Like all the other noble, fancy, ideas in history, the illusion of true freedom makes these edges of our existence warm and safe. Even while we live in a deadly, cruel, and unpredictable world. American’s are supposed to be different. Or so we were told. But we are no different from citizens of any ancient empire.

I was reading this morning a story on the Wall Street Journal, which is supposed to be a financial newspaper. The title, especially given the situation in the world now, slapped me hard across the face. The title read:

“Pandemic Upends Putin’s Plans to Raise Russia’s Dwindling Birthrate”

“What are they wishing for here?” this is what I asked myself. For, you see, this is what editorial is, a mirror into the desired effect. As journalists or analysts were are trained to present cases and Rupert Murdoch’s newspaper trains its cause toward the destruction of the evil billionaire’s enemies. And the Australian born American media mogul hate Vladimir Putin and Russia. He wants the Russian people to die out, and his scribes spend their days writing a bible about how it can happen. Come on, it’s not so difficult to see.

You can’t read the whole story of wonderful infertility in Russia. Because the Wall Street Journal has a paywall. This fact not only ensures that Murdoch gets his twenty pieces of silver, but it also certifies that the audience of bankers, brokers, and politicians who consume WSJ content get what they want. An old testament to a world where Russia is a history chapter in the New World Order’s religion of greed and chaos.

But why? Doesn’t every American wonder how we’ve managed to go nowhere in the more than seven decades since World War 2? Black lives still don’t matter in the US? And neither do, red, yellow, brown, Slavic, Celtic, Christian, or Muslim ones anywhere. And least of all, do Russian children matter – but why? When did Russia attack America? Where are the dead and buried in America’s wars with the USSR or Russia? Are the memorial cemeteries secret? Has the liberal order that’s run things hidden from us the very premise on which we base our almost religious fear and hatred of a people?

No. There are no battalions of dead warriors from the Russo-American war. Because there never was such a war. I wonder why we can’t ask “why” on that one? Oh, I am sorry. It’s because Australian-American billionaires and golf playing American presidents protected us from the evil Putin and the war-hungry Ruskies! Yeah, I forgot.

I want to end this observation today with a couple more questions. First, and foremost, how can we Americans stand idly by and watch the foundations of our country destroyed? How can we fight amongst ourselves over problems that should no longer exist, while the purveyors of every evil we ever fought against, they are thriving in their ivory towers? Second, how did we get to be so mean and nasty? Or, were we always hoping Russians or Iranians or Chinese people would have more hardship? And Murdoch, the man referred to as “the man whose name is synonymous with unethical newspapers,” is but one of the privateers hell-bent on taking his share of Russia if Putin fails.

I won’t delve too deeply into Murdoch’s Russian ventures but ousted oligarch Sergei Pugachev and many others align with the News Corp dictator. The thrives Putin uncovered and banished from Russia are the henchmen who would butcher her people for their gold. Here’s where it started, back in 1998, when News Corp. made the move to influence Russia the way it influences the west. You may recognize another famous name from the UPI story, which begins:

“Media mogul Rupert Murdoch’s News Corporation has entered the Russian market, joining with Russian tycoon Boris Berezovsky in a venture holding exclusive rights to sell advertising time on two major Russian television networks, ORT Channel 1 and TV-6.”

Murdoch, Ted Turner, and other media moguls had their sights on expanding their propaganda/advertising businesses into Russia back when. Eventually, Vladimir Putin’s straight game of preserving Russia for Russians ran contrary to their plans, they pulled out, and we see the revenge they take every time we pick up a newspaper or turn on the TV.

In America, and in much of the so-called “west”, a subculture of thought, academia, journalism, and business has taught anti-Russia narrative for generations now.

However, what concerns me is not deep think, Cold War policy still going on behind the scenes in Washington and Moscow. What bothers me is how we Americans allow such unfair and improper relations to go on. Russia was never a real enemy, only a contrived perceptual opponent made so by our imperialist drive for control. The United States, more than any other country in the world, has become rich and powerful at the expense of the world, not alongside the world. This is an incontrovertible truth. But a truth any “Trumpster” would fight to the death to hide. We create so much harm and destroy so much goodwill believing in these lies. We condone things like races of people just “dying out” – and THIS is what those headlines mean.

This is not the country I went into the armed forces to defend. This is not the country may parents, grandparents, and ancestors pledge allegiance to their entire lives. Americans are not supposed to be unfair, cruel, bad sports, and ruthless. We’re just not supposed to be.


By Phil Butler
Source: New Eastern Outlook

حرب نفسيّة وعملاء خمس نجوم

ناصر قنديل

تشتغل الحروب الإعلاميّة والنفسيّة على تفكير الناس النمطي المستمدّ من ذاكرتهم العميقة، لتمويه التغييرات التي تكفّلت بإضعاف قدرة القوى الإمبراطورية عندما تتآكل سطوتها. ففي الذاكرة العميقة رافقت القوة والتخطيط والانتصارات صورة هذه الإمبراطورية، وكيّ الوعي الاستباقيّ كي لا يتم التجرؤ عليها وشق عصا الطاعة بوجهها وقد تغيّر الحال، لا يتمّ إلا بإعادة التذكير بالصورة النمطيّة التي تحفظها الذاكرة العميقة للشعوب المستهدفة. وهذا هو الحال مع كل قوة كانت عظمى وتدرك بفعل اختبارات القوة التي عايشتها، انها فقدت قدرة فرض السياسات عن طريق قوة السحق، كما تعجز عن منع نهوض سياسات مناوئة عن طريق قوة الردع، خصوصاً عندما تعرف هذه القوى التي كانت عظمى حتى الأمس أنها لم تعد قادرة على رسم استراتيجية متكاملة لتحقيق أهدافها، لأنها لا تمتلك المقدرات اللازمة لفرض هذه الاستراتيجية، ولا تستطيع امتلاك التوقعات المختلفة لسيناريوات الاشتباك والتحسب لها، ولأن استراتيجيات خصومها تكتفي بمنعها من التقدم تحت عناوين وطنية وأخلاقية تتفوق على عناوينها، ولأن التساكن لا يصلح كاستراتيجية بما يجلبه من تآكل واهتراء، ولأن التسليم بالأمر الواقع الجديد له تداعيات تتخطى نقاط الاشتباك، تصير التجريبية هي الخطة، شرط رسم خريطة حركتها بين حدَّي عدم التسليم وعدم التورط في المواجهة، وتصير لخطط المواجهة التكتيكية مهمة واحدة هي الحرب النفسية للإيحاء بأن كل شيء تحت السيطرة.

مَن يدقق بكيفية التعامل الأميركي في الولاية الأولى للرئيس الأميركي دونالد ترامب، رغم كل فظاظة الخطاب، وعنجهيّة الاعاءات، سيكتشف بسهولة أن كل الخطوات التي قامت بها واشنطن في المنطقة، هي جزء من حرب نفسية تهدف للحفاظ على الصورة النمطية للقوة الأميركية، وقدرة التخطيط الأميركي، لكنها تفتقر لوصف الخطة أو الاستراتيجية. فخبرة ولايتي الرئيسين جورج بوش الإبن وباراك أوباما، كافية للجواب عن سؤال حول مدى حدود قدرة القوة العسكرية والعقوبات المالية على تحقيق الأهداف الأميركية، وأن اعتماد جرعات أكبر أو أقل من هذه أو تلك، بين حدَّي عدم التسليم بالأمر الواقع وعدم التورط في مواجهة، لا تشكل خطة ولا ترسم استراتيجية، بل يفضح التقلب بين هذه الجرعات والتراجع عنها ولو بصيغة استثناءات لبعض العقوبات، أو إعلان التعالي عن الوقوع في فخاخ الاستدراج على مواجهات، المنهج التجريبيّ الذي يحكمها لتثبيت التحرك بين حدَّي عدم التسليم بالأمر الواقع الجديد، وعدم التورّط في مواجهات.

خبرة القوى الفاعلة في ساحات الاشتباك، خصوصاً مربع روسيا والصين وإيران وقوى المقاومة، وفي طليعتها سورية، خلال عشر سنوات مضت، وبلغت ذروتها مع إدارة ترامب، تكفي لتعرف سلفاً أن كل حملات التهويل والتهديد، المرافقة لوضع قانون قيصر للعقوبات على سورية قيد التنفيذ تنتمي إلى هذا التمويه على العجز باللجوء إلى الحرب النفسية، ولذلك كانت قراءة سريعة لنصوص القانون كافية لإدراك أنه كذلك، بل إنه رسالة تفاوضية لصياغة قواعد اشتباك تسعى لفتح الباب للانسحاب الأميركي، مقابل تصفير الخسائر بدلاً من تحقيق الأرباح التي كانت تقف وراء الحروب والعقوبات، كأهداف معلنة، وتصفير الخسائر يتضاءل حجمه وينخفض سقفه من السعي للحفاظ على المكاسب التي حققها حلفاء واشنطن في مرحلة صعود مشروعها، إلى ارتضاء عدم تدفيعهم خسائر فشل المشروع؛ وفي مقدمة هؤلاء كيان الاحتلال، الذي يسعى الأميركي لربط انسحابه بتحصينه بأحزمة أمان على الجبهتين السورية واللبنانية، واللبنانية السورية، يسهل تفكيك رموزها وكشف عناوينها، مهما تزيّنوا بادعاءات مموّهة، أو تخفوا وراء أقنعة مزيفة.

هذا هو مغزى حملات إعلامية سياسية لبنانية عن معابر غير شرعية مع سورية، ومكافحة التهريب كسبب للانهيار المالي، والدعوات الموازية لتطوير دور اليونيفيل، وفتح ملف سلاح المقاومة، وصولاً لربطه بالمسؤولية عن الأزمة الاقتصادية. وهذا معنى الحديث الأميركي المباشر عن ربط التراجع عن القانون مقابل إشارات بتموضع جديد لإيران وقوى المقاومة في سورية، وتركيز بعض مسمّيات “المعارضة السورية” على هذه العناوين كأهداف لحملاتها الإعلامية والسياسية، وهذا كله ما يسمّيه الأميركيون بدور عملاء الخمس نجوم.

العرب تحت رحمة «السلطان» و«القيصر»؟

د. وفيق إبراهيم

العرب غائبون في سبات عميق، لا يكترثون لعودة العثمانيين الى احتلال الكثير من مناطقهم، حتى أصبحت تركيا البلد الثاني في السيطرة على أراضيهم بعد الأميركيين وقبل الإسرائيليين.

النفوذ الأميركي في الشرق الاوسط والجنوح الأميركي الى إعادة تجميع جيوشهم ضمن مراكز كبرى مع اللجوء الى حروب الاقتصاد والتجويع، وهذه من الفنون التي لا يملك الأتراك إمكانات استعمالها.

لذلك يشهد المشرق حالياً حربين متواكبتين بأسلوبي القتل بالرصاص والإبادة بالتجويع.

تتجسد الأولى في هجوم تركي كبير على شمالي العراق في جبال سنجار ومناطق هفتانين لا يلقى أي اهتمام عالمي، ويتعامل معه العرب وكأنه يجري في أقصى الأرض مكتفين بتوجيه إدانات إعلامية رصينة.

كما يبتدئ الأميركيون بشنّ حرب تجويع ضد سورية مدتها عشر سنوات متواصلة دخلت منذ يومين طور التنفيذ.

للإشارة فإن الحرب في شمال العراق ترتدي شكل اجتياح كبير ابتدأ بقصف تركي شمل 150 موقعاً وذرائعه كثيرة كحال كل المشاريع الاستعمارية التي تدعي أنها تحارب الإرهاب وتنشر الحضارة والديموقراطية وتبحث عن اسلحة دمار شامل وحماية الشعوب.

تركيا اذاً تسيطر على قسم كبير من ليبيا وأجزاء من شمالي العراق والشمال والغرب السوريين، ولها أدوار قوية في اليمن ومصر والسودان وتونس وقطر، وتمتلك نفوذاً سياسياً في المغرب ولبنان، وتسيطر على مياه البحر المتوسط بدءاً من سواحلها الى المياه القبرصية واليونان وصولاً الى المياه الليبية وجوارها من دون أن ننسى أن تركيا تحتل ثلث قبرص وتقيم عليها جمهورية للقبارصة من أصل تركي منذ العام 1974 بصمت أوروبي وآخر من الناتو.

الا يشبه هذا التمدّد التركي بدايات تشكيل السلطنة العثمانية التي ابتدأت في 1516 باحتلال سورية وجوارها العربي لمدة 4 قرون كاملة؟

الوضع اذاً شديد التشابه انما مع ظروف عربية وإقليمية، ودولية افضل من السابق لمصلحة العثمانيين الجدد.

في تلك المرحلة شكلت دول «المماليك» حائلاً كان يتصدّى للعثمانيين بشكل دائم الى ان انتصر العثمانيون في معركة مرج دابق في 1516 ملتهمين كامل مناطق العرب التي تناثرت منذ انهيار العباسيين من القرن العاشر.

إقليمياً هناك تقاطعات تركية إسرائيلية لا تبدو ظاهرة لكنها موجودة وبعمق. والدليل أن تركيا هي من أوائل الدول التي اعترفت بـ»إسرائيل» وتقيم علاقات سياسية واقتصادية عميقة معها.

حتى أن وفداً تركياً – قطرياً ذهب الى الكيان المحتل مطالباً الإسرائيليين بتجزئة ضم الضفة الغربية حتى تمرير المخطط التركي والنتائج المرجوة من «قانون» قيصر الأميركي.

ضمن هذه المعطيات، تبدو ردود فعل الخليج ومصر مضحكة. فالسعودية والإمارات تخشيان من النفوذ العثماني الجديد الممتطي ظهر الاخوان المسلمين العرب الذين يرفضون الأنظمة الملكية ويعملون على إسقاطها.

لكن خوفهم غير قابل للمجابهة، لانهم ينتظرون الموقف الأميركي، وهذا الأخير يسكت بما يكشف انه مؤيد لهذا التمدد التركي. فالأتراك في خاتمة الأمر هم جزء من الناتو قد يذهبون حيناً نحو خصوصيات شرق اوسطية يريدونها لبلادهم حصراً لكنهم لا يخرجون من الخط الأميركي خصوصاً عندما يُكشر الأميركي عن أنيابه.

هناك اذاً خطة عثمانية تستعمل قوة تركيا في منطقة عربية متهالكة وانتشار حلفائها الاخوان المسلمين في كامل المنطقة العربية – الإسلامية والموافقة الضمنية الأميركية على تعبئة الفراغات الناتجة من تراجع الدور الأميركي. فهل من المصادفات تأييد الأميركيين لدولة السراج الليبية المدعومة من الأتراك، وقبول الأميركيين للاحتلال التركي لغرب سورية وشمالها وشمالي العراق وقسم من اليمن والسيطرة على تونس السياسية؟

هذه أدوار تظهر بوضوح مدى التنسيق الأميركي العثماني في منطقة متقهقرة يحاول الحلف السوري مع حزب الله وإيران وروسيا وقف العدوانية الأميركية – العثمانية والتواطؤ الخليجي المصري.

لذلك فإن الترويج لاتفاقات مع تركيا تتعهد فيه برفض الالتزام بقانون قيصر الأميركي، ليس إلا من قبيل الدجل السياسي العثماني الذي يريد تمرير مشاريعه الاستعمارية في البحر المتوسط ودوله العربية بأقل قدر ممكن من الضوضاء والضجيج.

لتبيان نوعية هذا النفاق فإن العلاقات التركية السورية مقطوعة على كل المستويات سواء عبر الحدود او بواسطة البحر والجو، وعندما ترفض تركيا قيصر فإنها تضع شروطاً أولها إدخال جماعاتها من الاخوان المسلمين السوريين في اللجنة الدستورية من خلال رعاية أميركية لأعمال المفاوضات، وهذا بدوره كافٍ لنسف أي تغيير تركي محتمل.

العربُ إذاً بين سلطان عثماني يعمل لإعادة تاريخ السلطنة العثمانية وقيصر أميركي يعتبر أن استعادته أحاديته القطبية تمر بخنق سورية وتجويعها وإلغاء حزب الله كمنظمة جهادية ذات مدى إقليمي مناهض للنفوذ الأميركي.

وهذا يستتبع فوراً تقليصاً للدور الإيراني في العالم الإسلامي وإعادة وإعادة حصر روسيا داخل كيانها السياسي. كذلك فإن الصين تجد نفسها مضطرة لإرجاء طموحها القطبي الى عقود مقبلة.

لذلك فإن المراهنة هي على انتصار سورية على قانون قيصر تشكل حتماً الطريق المطلوبة لمجابهة المشاريع العثمانية وطردها من المنطقة العربية.

بما يؤكد أن القيصر الأميركي والسلطان التركي يعملان بالتحالف في سورية لأنهما مدركان المشتركات بين مصيريهما.

وكما انتصرت سورية في حرب السنوات التسع فإنها ذاهبة نحو نصر جديد بالتعاون مع حزب الله وإيران وروسيا.

رئيس الحكومة إلى الصين… ماذا ننتظر؟ ‏

ناصر قنديل

مقابل سقف وهميّ يبلغ 21 مليار دولار على سنوات عدة لمجموع ما يمكن أن يقدّمه صندوق النقد الدولي ومؤتمر سيدر معاً، تخاض حرب سياسية إعلامية تستهدف الدعوة لنزع سلاح المقاومة، والقطيعة مع سورية، والقبول بترسيم الحدود البحرية بما لا يُغضب واشنطن، ويلبي بالتالي مصالح كيان الاحتلال على حساب لبنان، وعدا عن الأكلاف الباهظة لهذه الأثمان. فمعلوم بمنطق الحسابات الواقعية بعيداً عن أي وطنية ومبادئ، أن دون تنفيذ هذه الطلبات معارك يعجز دعاتها الداخليّون عن خوضها، ويعجز دعاتها الخارجيّون عن فرضها بالقوة، وبالمقابل يرفض المعنيون بهذه الدعوات التنازل عن ثوابتهم بقبول هذه الدعوات لتجريدهم مما يرونه مفهومهم للسيادة والدفاع عنها.

بالمقابل بات ثابتاً أن هناك عرضاً صينياً، يصل لـ 30 مليار دولار، يمكن أن تستثمرها شركات صينية، وفقاً لتفاهمات من دولة إلى دولة، تطال تطوير مرفأي طرابلس وبيروت وفق معايير عالمية وربطهما بخطوط سكك حديد مع بغداد عبر دمشق، وإنشاء واستثمار خط سكك حديد سريع بين طرابلس والناقورة، وتنفيذ وتشغيل معامل كهرباء وشبكات نقل لتوفير الكهرباء 24/24، وإنشاء وتشغيل نفق ضهر البيدر، وبينما لا مجال للحديث هنا عن هدر وفساد، سيتم توظيف أموال صندوق النقد وسيدر ضمن آليات سبق اختبارها ويعشعش فيها الفساد، وبينما أثمان أموال صندوق النقد وسيدر عالية الكلفة لدرجة يستحيل على لبنان سدادها في السياسة، فإن لا أكلاف سياسية للعرض الصيني، فهو عرض اقتصاديّ بحت.

لا أحد يدعو لتغيير نمط العيش الذي يتحدث عنه البعض والقائم على النمط الغربي، ولا أحد يدعو لمقاطعة أوروبا وأميركا، ولا لوقف التفاوض مع صندوق النقد والتحرك الحثيث للحصول على أموال سيدر. فكل المطلوب هو فعل ما يفعله الأوروبيون والأميركيون الذين تشغل مرافئهم الكبرى في بوسطن وأمستردام، رافعات ومصنفات للحاويات، صينية، والذين لا يضيرهم التعاون مع شركة هواوي في إنشاء شبكات اتصالات للجيل الخامس للهاتف الخلوي، كما لا يضير أميركا أن تسد عجز حزينتها بآلاف المليارات من الدولارات التي تستثمرها الصين في سندات الخزينة الأميركية، وإذا كنا نسمع دائماً كلاماً عن لا مانع من التعاون مع الصين، فإننا نعلم أن محاولات التعطيل على قدم وساق والحجة هي عدم إغضاب أميركا. وهذه قمة العبودية الثقافية والتبعية السياسية حتى العمالة.

هل من قضية أهم اليوم من إنقاذ لبنان، وفقاً لخطة نهوض اقتصادية تشكل المشاريع التي درستها الشركات الصينية، وتبدي البنوك الصينية برعاية حكومتها الاستعداد لتنفيذها وتشغيلها، ولأن رئيس الحكومة جاد في مهمته الإنقاذيّة، فإنه من الأولوية بمكان أن يفعل كما فعل رؤساء أميركا الذين زاروا الصين لبحث المصالح الاقتصادية لبلادهم، من دون انتظار زيارة عواصم عربية مقفلة بوجه الحكومة، والمعلومات تقول إنه إذا قرّر رئيس الحكومة زيارة الصين على رأس وفد وزاري واقتصادي، وتم ترتيب برنامج منتج للزيارة فإن رقم الـ 30 مليار دولار قد يصل 50 مليار دولار بينها مصافٍ للنفط وحل تقني لملف النفايات ومشاريع سكنية ضخمة في الأرياف ومراكز المحافظات، وأن طلب وديعة صينية في البنك المركزي سيكون على جدول الأعمال، لكن المطلوب التحرّر من عقدة عدم إغضاب الأميركي، الذي تقول تجربة تركيا، إنه لا يقيم حساباً حتى بين أقرب الحلفاء، أعضاء الأطلسي إلا لمن يمارس سيادته واستقلاله، بينما يخاطب الأتباع الضعفاء بلغة ملؤها الإهانة وقاعدتها الإذلال، فماذا ننتظر؟

America’s Own Color Revolution

By F. William Engdahl

Global Research, June 17, 2020

Color Revolution is the term used to describe a series of remarkably effective CIA-led regime change operations using techniques developed by the RAND Corporation, “democracy” NGOs and other groups since the 1980’s. They were used in crude form to bring down the Polish communist regime in the late 1980s. From there the techniques were refined and used, along with heavy bribes, to topple the Gorbachev regime in the Soviet Union. For anyone who has studied those models closely, it is clear that the protests against police violence led by amorphous organizations with names like Black Lives Matter or Antifa are more than purely spontaneous moral outrage. Hundreds of thousands of young Americans are being used as a battering ram to not only topple a US President, but in the process, the very structures of the US Constitutional order.

If we step back from the immediate issue of videos showing a white Minneapolis policeman pressing his knee on the neck of a black man, George Floyd, and look at what has taken place across the nation since then, it is clear that certain organizations or groups were well-prepared to instrumentalize the horrific event for their own agenda.

The protests since May 25 have often begun peacefully only to be taken over by well-trained violent actors. Two organizations have appeared regularly in connection with the violent protests—Black Lives Matter and Antifa (USA). Videos show well-equipped protesters dressed uniformly in black and masked (not for coronavirus to be sure), vandalizing police cars, burning police stations, smashing store windows with pipes or baseball bats. Use of Twitter and other social media to coordinate “hit-and-run” swarming strikes of protest mobs is evident.

What has unfolded since the Minneapolis trigger event has been compared to the wave of primarily black ghetto protest riots in 1968. I lived through those events in 1968 and what is unfolding today is far different. It is better likened to the Yugoslav color revolution that toppled Milosevic in 2000.

Gene Sharp: Template for Regime Overthrow

In the year 2000 the US State Department, aided by its National Endowment for Democracy (NED) and select CIA operatives, began secretly training a group of Belgrade university students led by a student group that was called Otpor! (Resistance!). The NED and its various offshoots was created in the 1980’s by CIA head Bill Casey as a covert CIA tool to overthrow specific regimes around the world under the cover of a human rights NGO. In fact, they get their money from Congress and from USAID.

In the Serb Otpor! destabilization of 2000, the NED and US Ambassador Richard Miles in Belgrade selected and trained a group of several dozen students, led by Srđa Popović, using the handbook, From Dictatorship to Democracy, translated to Serbian, of the late Gene Sharp and his Albert Einstein Institution. In a post mortem on the Serb events, the Washington Post wrote, “US-funded consultants played a crucial role behind the scenes in virtually every facet of the anti-drive, running tracking polls, training thousands of opposition activists and helping to organize a vitally important parallel vote count. US taxpayers paid for 5,000 cans of spray paint used by student activists to scrawl anti-Milošević graffiti on walls across Serbia.”

Trained squads of activists were deployed in protests to take over city blocks with the aid of ‘intelligence helmet’ video screens that give them an instantaneous overview of their environment. Bands of youth converging on targeted intersections in constant dialogue on cell phones, would then overwhelm police. The US government spent some $41 million on the operation. Student groups were secretly trained in the Sharp handbook techniques of staging protests that mocked the authority of the ruling police, showing them to be clumsy and impotent against the youthful protesters. Professionals from the CIA and US State Department guided them behind the scenes.

The Color Revolution Otpor! model was refined and deployed in 2004 as the Ukraine Orange Revolution with logo and color theme scarves, and in 2003 in Georgia as the Rose Revolution. Later Secretary of State Hillary Clinton used the template to launch the Arab Spring. In all cases the NED was involved with other NGOs including the Soros Foundations.

After defeating Milosevic, Popovic went on to establish a global color revolution training center, CANVAS, a kind of for-profit business consultancy for revolution, and was personally present in New York working reportedly with Antifa during the Occupy Wall Street where also Soros money was reported.

Antifa and BLM

The protests, riots, violent and non-violent actions sweeping across the United States since May 25, including an assault on the gates of the White House, begin to make sense when we understand the CIA’s Color Revolution playbook.

The impact of the protests would not be possible were it not for a network of local and state political officials inside the Democratic Party lending support to the protesters, even to the point the Democrat Mayor of Seattle ordered police to abandon several blocks in the heart of downtown to occupation by protesters.

In recent years major portions of the Democratic Party across the US have been quietly taken over by what one could call radical left candidates. Often they win with active backing of organizations such as Democratic Socialists of America or Freedom Road Socialist Organizations. In the US House of Representatives the vocal quarter of new representatives around Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY), Rashida Tlaib and Minneapolis Representative Ilhan Omar are all members or close to Democratic Socialists of America. Clearly without sympathetic Democrat local officials in key cities, the street protests of organizations such as Black Lives Matter and Antifa would not have such a dramatic impact.

To get a better grasp how serious the present protest movement is we should look at who has been pouring millions into BLM. The Antifa is more difficult owing to its explicit anonymous organization form. However, their online Handbook openly recommends that local Antifa “cells” join up with BLM chapters.

FRSO: Follow the Money

BLM began in 2013 when three activist friends created the #BlackLivesMatter hashtag to protest the allegations of shooting of an unarmed black teenager, Trayvon Martin by a white Hispanic block watchman, George Zimmermann. Alicia Garza, Patrisse Cullors, and Opal Tometi were all were connected with and financed by front groups tied to something called Freedom Road Socialist Organization, one of the four largest radical left organizations in the United States formed out of something called New Communist Movement that dissolved in the 1980s.

On June 12, 2020 the Freedom Road Socialist Organization webpage states, “The time is now to join a revolutionary organization! Join Freedom Road Socialist Organization…If you have been out in the streets this past few weeks, the odds are good that you’ve been thinking about the difference between the kind of change this system has to offer, and the kind of change this country needs. Capitalism is a failed system that thrives on exploitation, inequality and oppression. The reactionary and racist Trump administration has made the pandemic worse. The unfolding economic crisis we are experiencing is the worst since the 1930s. Monopoly capitalism is a dying system and we need to help finish it off. And that is exactly what Freedom Road Socialist Organization is working for.”

In short the protests over the alleged police killing of a black man in Minnesota are now being used to call for a revolution against capitalism. FRSO is an umbrella for dozens of amorphous groups including Black Lives Matter or BLM. What is interesting about the self-described Marxist-Leninist roots of the Freedom Road Socialist Organization (FRSO) is not so much their left politics as much as their very establishment funding by a group of well-endowed tax-exempt foundations.

Alicia Garza of BLM is also a board member or executive of five different Freedom Road front groups including 2011 Board chair of Right to the City Alliance, Board member of School of Unity and Liberation (SOUL), of People Organized to Win Employment Rights (POWER), Forward Together and Special Projects director of National Domestic Workers Alliance.

The Right to the City Alliance got $6.5 million between 2011 and 2014 from a number of very established tax-exempt foundations including the Ford Foundation ($1.9 million), from both of George Soros’s major tax-exempts–Open Society Foundations, and the Foundation to Promote Open Society for $1.3 million. Also the cornflake-tied Kellogg Foundation $250,000, and curiously, Ben & Jerry’s Foundation (ice cream) for $30,000.

Garza also got major foundation money as Executive Director of the FRSO front, POWER, where Obama former “green jobs czar” Van Jones, a self-described “communist” and “rowdy black nationalist,” now with CNN, was on the board. Alicia Garza also chaired the Right to the City Alliance, a network of activist groups opposing urban gentrification. That front since 2009 received $1.3 million from the Ford Foundation, as well as $600,000 from the Soros foundations and again, Ben & Jerry’s ($50,000). And Garza’s SOUL, which claimed to have trained 712 “organizers” in 2014, when she co-founded Black Lives Matter, got $210,000 from the Rockefeller Foundation and another $255,000 from the Heinz Foundation (ketchup and John Kerry family) among others. With the Forward Together of FRSO, Garza sat on the board of a “multi-racial organization that works with community leaders and organizations to transform culture and policy to catalyze social change.” It officially got $4 million in 2014 revenues and from 2012 and 2014, the organization received a total of $2.9 million from Ford Foundation ($655,000) and other major foundations.

Nigeria-born BLM co-founder Opal Tometi likewise comes from the network of FRSO. Tometi headed the FRSO’s Black Alliance for Just Immigration. Curiously with a “staff” of two it got money from major foundations including the Kellogg Foundation for $75,000 and Soros foundations for $100,000, and, again, Ben & Jerry’s ($10,000). Tometi got $60,000 in 2014 to direct the group.

The Freedom Road Socialist Organization that is now openly calling for a revolution against capitalism in the wake of the Floyd George killing has another arm, The Advancement Project, which describes itself as “a next generation, multi-racial civil rights organization.” Its board includes a former Obama US Department of Education Director of Community Outreach and a former Bill Clinton Assistant Attorney General for Civil Rights. The FRSO Advancement Project in 2013 got millions from major US tax-exempt foundations including Ford ($8.5 million), Kellogg ($3 million), Hewlett Foundation of HP defense industry founder ($2.5 million), Rockefeller Foundation ($2.5 million), and Soros foundations ($8.6 million).

Major Money and ActBlue

By 2016, the presidential election year where Hillary Clinton was challenging Donald Trump, Black Lives Matter had established itself as a well-organized network. That year the Ford Foundation and Borealis Philanthropy announced the formation of the Black-Led Movement Fund (BLMF), “a six-year pooled donor campaign aimed at raising $100 million for the Movement for Black Lives coalition” in which BLM was a central part. By then Soros foundations had already given some $33 million in grants to the Black Lives Matter movement. This was serious foundation money.

The BLMF identified itself as being created by top foundations including in addition to the Ford Foundation, the Kellogg Foundation and the Soros Open Society Foundations. They described their role: “The BLMF provides grants, movement building resources, and technical assistance to organizations working advance the leadership and vision of young, Black, queer, feminists and immigrant leaders who are shaping and leading a national conversation about criminalization, policing and race in America.”

The Movement for Black Lives Coalition (M4BL) which includes Black Lives Matter, already in 2016 called for “defunding police departments, race-based reparations, voting rights for illegal immigrants, fossil-fuel divestment, an end to private education and charter schools, a universal basic income, and free college for blacks.”

Notably, when we click on the website of M4BL, under their donate button we learn that the donations will go to something called ActBlue Charities. ActBlue facilitates donations to “democrats and progressives.” As of May 21, ActBlue had given $119 million to the campaign of Joe Biden.

That was before the May 25 BLM worldwide protests. Now major corporations such as Apple, Disney, Nike and hundreds others may be pouring untold and unaccounted millions into ActBlue under the name of Black Lives Matter, funds that in fact can go to fund the election of a Democrat President Biden. Perhaps this is the real reason the Biden campaign has been so confident of support from black voters. What is clear from only this account of the crucial role of big money foundations behind protest groups such as Black lives Matter is that there is a far more complex agenda driving the protests now destabilizing cities across America. The role of tax-exempt foundations tied to the fortunes of the greatest industrial and financial companies such as Rockefeller, Ford, Kellogg, Hewlett and Soros says that there is a far deeper and far more sinister agenda to current disturbances than spontaneous outrage would suggest.

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F. William Engdahl is strategic risk consultant and lecturer, he holds a degree in politics from Princeton University and is a best-selling author on oil and geopolitics, exclusively for the online magazine “New Eastern Outlook” where this article was originally published. He is a Research Associate of the Centre for Research on Globalization.

Featured image is from NEO

EMPEROR TRUMP NOW STANDS PARTIALLY NAKED

Source

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A child exposing the nakedness of the emperor by speaking truth to power?

Not these days.

More than half of the United States — not just liberals and the left but also the mainstream media and some Republicans — has been shouting at Emperor Trump for months on end that he has no clothes. These declarations have fallen on deaf ears, for Donald Trump is constitutionally incapable of acknowledging his own flaws.

Also, there are still plenty of people telling Trump what he wants to hear. The president is surrounded by family members, advisors, and careerists who have refused to acknowledge the simple truth that the White House has been occupied for more than three years by a person that former Secretary of State Rex Tillerson once called King Moron (oops, I misquote: he actually said a “f**king moron”).

In the last week, however, this picture has begun to change. Three important clothiers of the president have said that maybe the commander-in-chief has been experiencing a wardrobe malfunction all along.

Twitter, Justin Trudeau, and James Mattis all took their turns in the spotlight recently to challenge the American president. Representing three important constituencies — social media, the Pentagon, and the international community — all three in their own way have chipped away at Trump’s power.

True, they have all provided important cover for the naked leader in the past. Also, their statements could have been clearer calls to arms. But now, all three can help precipitate the “run for the exit” moment that will spell Trump’s downfall.

We’ll have to wait until November to be sure, but the president might have effectively lost his reelection bid this month, well before Election Day.

Social Media

Donald Trump once wooed the mainstream media. He chatted up gossip columnists. He pretended over the phone that he was his own publicist, singing the praises of his boss. He so desperately wanted to be on the cover of Time that he created dummy versions of the magazine proclaiming that “Trump is hitting on all fronts” and hung them in at least five of his golf clubs. Throughout, he groused that the media was not sufficiently flattering.

Twitter provided Trump with the ideal solution to his chronic need for attention. He no longer had to rely on the media and instead could communicate directly to his followers. He could simultaneously disparage the mainstream media as “fake news” and dispense his own fake news by tweet.

In the first three years of his presidency, Trump fired off more than 11,000 tweets. Many of them were rambling attacks on his opponents (somehow Trump manages to be rambling in under 280 characters). But some of them were actual policy announcements or served some other tactical purpose.

Twitter wasn’t simply a tool of the presidency. It became the presidency.

According to this New York Times analysis of this incessant Twitterstorm:

Early on, top aides wanted to restrain the president’s Twitter habit, even considering asking the company to impose a 15-minute delay on Mr. Trump’s messages. But 11,390 presidential tweets later, many administration officials and lawmakers embrace his Twitter obsession, flocking to his social media chief with suggestions. Policy meetings are hijacked when Mr. Trump gets an idea for a tweet, drawing in cabinet members and others for wordsmithing. And as a president often at war with his own bureaucracy, he deploys Twitter to break through logjams, overrule, or humiliate recalcitrant advisers and pre-empt his staff.

Twitter has helped Trump. And Trump has helped poison Twitter.

Although the social media giant has had no problem deleting praise for the Islamic State, it hasn’t shown comparable due diligence toward white nationalism. According to an account of a discussion at a Twitter staff meeting, a technical employee explained that “on a technical level, content from Republican politicians could get swept up by algorithms aggressively removing white supremacist material. Banning politicians wouldn’t be accepted by society as a trade-off for flagging all of the white supremacist propaganda.”

With the compliance of social media platforms, Trump and his coterie of Republican extremists have helped to mainstream otherwise marginal content.

But that tide might be turning. At the end of May, Twitter took the unprecedented step of labeling two of Trump’s tweets, directing readers to accurate sources of information on mail-in balloting and announcing that Trump had violated its policies on glorifying violence. Then, last week, Twitter took down an account that retweeted all of Trump’s utterances, again for violating its policies.

Trump, predictably, went ballistic. He lashed out on Twitter (the man is impervious to irony). He retaliated with an executive order to lift some of the liability protections on social media companies.

It’s not as if Trump is going to abandon his principle mode of communication. This last weekend, after all, he broke his own Twitter record by sending out 200 Tweets in a 24-hour period, including 74 in one hour. By increasing the outflow of his firehose, Trump seems to be daring Twitter to keep up with its labels.

Twitter hasn’t deplatformed Trump, as it has some other darlings of the alt-right. It let slide Trump’s latest Twitter outrage — promoting a conspiracy theory about a Buffalo protestor injured by the police — because the use of a question mark marked it as “speculative” (Really? Really??).

But with its labels, Twitter is finally saying that no one is above the law — the admittedly loose laws of the internet — not even the president of the United States.

Justin Trudeau

In the United States, we are still talking about the 8 minutes and 46 seconds that a cop knelt on George Floyd’s neck, killing him.

In Canada, they’re talking about 21 seconds.

That’s the pause that Prime Minister Justin Trudeau took to answer a question on Trump’s threat to use the military against those protesting Floyd’s death. Trudeau could have used that time to criticize Trump directly. Instead, after his long pause, he chose to speak of the problems facing people of color in his own country. “There is systemic racism in Canada,” he said.

Trump has never hesitated to lambaste other heads of state. He called Trudeau “two-faced” as well as “very dishonest and weak.” He labeled comments by Emanuel Macron “very, very nasty.” He criticized comments of Danish Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen as “nasty and inappropriate.” With comments about friends like these, you can imagine how Trump tongue-lashes his enemies.

For the most part, the international community has quietly tolerated Trump. They’ve delivered tersely worded rebuttals. They’ve made fun of him behind his back. But they haven’t directly or personally criticized him.

Given the power of the United States, it’s unlikely that the leader of an allied country will take the president to task. So, perhaps the best we can hope for is 21 seconds of silence, during which the rest of us can voice the thoughts we think are going through Justin Trudeau’s mind.

Maybe it’s because I worked for a Quaker organization for many years, but I think that sometimes silence can speak volumes.

James Mattis

Former Pentagon chief Jim “Mad Dog” Mattis was one of the more prominent “adults in the room” who were supposed to rein in Trump. He failed. He resigned in December 2018 after disagreeing with Trump’s push to withdraw U.S. troops from Syria. When he resigned and later when he published his memoir the following year, Mattis kept his thoughts on Trump to himself.

Last week, Mattis broke his silence with a remarkable statement in The Atlantic criticizing the president’s threatened use of the military against protesters. He said, in part:

Donald Trump is the first president in my lifetime who does not try to unite the American people — does not even pretend to try. Instead he tries to divide us. We are witnessing the consequences of three years of this deliberate effort. We are witnessing the consequences of three years without mature leadership. We can unite without him, drawing on the strengths inherent in our civil society.

In all my years as a protester, I have never witnessed someone of Mattis’s background and standing actually side with folks on the street. “The protests are defined by tens of thousands of people of conscience who are insisting that we live up to our values — our values as people and our values as a nation,” he said.

It wasn’t just Mattis. Former chair of the joint chiefs of staff Mike Mullen wrote a similar condemnation of Trump as did former commander of U.S. forces in Afghanistan John Allen. It was the journalistic equivalent of D-Day, with the generals landing their forces on Omaha Beach in the hopes of dethroning their adversary several months hence.

Yes, yes, I know: Mattis, Mullen, and Allen are no leftists. You can’t even call them liberals or moderates. Andy Kroll is right to point out in Rolling Stone that these are “the same military leaders who endorsed and defended a policy of forever war that has led to tens of thousands of American deaths, hundreds of thousands of dead Iraqis and Afghans and Syrians and Yemenis and Pakistanis, hundreds of thousands of injuries physical and mental suffered by U.S. service members, and many billions of taxpayer dollars poured into endless conflict.”

Kroll is both right and spectacularly off the mark. After all, Donald Trump similarly dismissed Colin Powell’s endorsement of Joe Biden by linking him to America’s failed wars.

The fact that these old establishment figures have blood on their hands is precisely the point. Noam Chomsky denouncing Donald Trump is not news. Everyone expects the leaders of the #BlackLivesMatter movement to criticize the president. I’ve been slamming Trump from day one of his presidency (and many months before), but I doubt my preaching goes very far beyond the choir.

All the attacks on Trump from left and center are what journalists call “dog bites man.” It’s no surprise. But “Mad Dog bites man”? That’s a different story altogether.

The military has been the most trusted institution in U.S. society for decades. According to Gallup, it enjoyed a 73 percent approval rating in 2019 — compared to 38 percent for both the presidency and the Supreme Court, 36 percent for organized religion, and 11 percent for Congress.

People listen to the military. And by people, here I mean folks who voted for Donald Trump, continue to support the president, and are still thinking about voting for him in November.

As importantly, these generals are willing to take enemy fire — from Fox News, from crazy Internet trolls, from the president himself—so that other former Trump enablers might be more willing to stand up and speak their minds.

Immediately after Mattis waded into the debate, Senator Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) confessed her concerns about Trump and said that she hasn’t made up her mind about who to support in November. Francis Rooney, a Republican member of Congress from Florida, is now leaning toward Biden. A number of prominent Republicans won’t vote for Trump, but they also are reluctant to say so in public.

This doesn’t exactly constitute a surge. A solid core of the party remains firmly behind the president. The more telegenic version of Trump, Tom Cotton (R-AR), is enjoying a swell of support after The New York Times criticized its own handling of the senator’s incendiary and inaccurate piece, “Send in the Military.” So far, Mattis has not played the role of the journalist Edward R. Murrow taking down the demagogue Joe McCarthy.

But you have to believe that statements from Mattis and others are at least going to introduce an element of doubt into the minds of some true believers. Active duty soldiers and veterans who voted for Trump — he received 61 percent of the veteran vote compared to Hillary Clinton’s 34 percent — might just heed the generals. And the latest polls suggest that both older Americans and white Americans are starting to abandon Trump.

I don’t expect Mitch McConnell or Tom Cotton to denounce Trump. Much of the Republican Party will loyally follow the president into his White House bunker. But thanks to the truth-telling of Mattis and others, everyone else will be laughing all the way to the polls at the emperor stripped bare by his enablers.


By John Feffer
Source: Foreign Policy In Focus

من المحيط الهادئ حتى جبل طارق الصين وحلفاؤها يعتلون عرش العالم

محمد صادق الحسيني

كلّ ما يدور من حولنا يؤكد بما لم يعد قابلاً للشك او التردّد بأنّ مركز ثقل العالم ينتقل من الغرب الى الشرق..! وانّ محور هذا الانتقال هو العلوم التي بدأت تهيمن عليها وتتقنها كلّ من الصين وروسيا وإيران، فيما لا تزال أميركا هيكلاً ضخماً، لكنها لا تكاد تملأ جوفها إلا أوهام القوة ومحدوديتها…!

وهاجس الصين هو الشبح الذي يطارد في ما كان يسمّى يوماً الدولة الأعظم في العالم…!

وإليكم مسار هذا التحوّل التاريخي بالوقائع:

لا بدّ لأيّ محلل موضوعي ان يعود الى الجذور البعيدة، لأيّ أزمة تظهر في العلاقات الدولية في وقتنا الحاضر، وذلك من أجل سبر أغوارها، والوقوف على مدى عمق هذه الأزمة، واستشراف احتمالات تطورها، والاستعداد للتعامل مع هذه التطورات والتداعيات، بشكل يخدم المصلحة العربية العليا، وفي مقدّمتها القضية العربية المركزية، التي هي قضية فلسطين.

انّ الأزمة التي نعيش فصولها منذ أشهر، بين الولايات المتحدة والصين الشعبية، وما تخللها من حرب تجارية واقتصادية وتكنولوجية وعلمية وسياسية وغير ذلك ضدّ الصين الشعبية، لم تظهر الى العلن منذ انتشار فيروس كورونا في مدينة ووهان الصينية، بداية هذا العام، وإنما يعود تاريخ انطلاقها الى زمن أبعد بكثير.

فمنذ إعلان ضابط البحرية والخبير الاستراتيجي البحري الأميركي، ألفرِدْ ثايَر ماهان عن استراتيجيته لفرض الهيمنة الأميركية على العالم، في أواخر القرن التاسع عشر (توفي سنة 1914)، والتي استند فيها الى انّ الوسيلة الأفضل، لفرض هذه الهيمنة، هي نشر الأساطيل الأميركية في بحار ومحيطات العالم والسيطرة عليها، مبتعداً بذلك عن استراتيجية مونرو، التي كانت تركز على/ أو تدعو إلى/ بسط السيطرة على الأميركيتين فقط.

وقد نفذت الولايات المتحدة هذه الاستراتيجية، منذ سنة 1907، عندما قرّر الرئيس الأميركي الجمهوري، ذو الأصول الهولندية، ثيودور روزفلت الذي انتخب رئيساً سنة 1904، إرسال حملة بحرية عسكرية أميركية، تضمّ العديد من البوارج الحربية، في جولة حول العالم. هذه الجولة التي شكلت تدريباً عسكرياً حياً لمشاركة الولايات المتحدة، بجيوشها البحرية والبرية، في الحرب العالمية الأولى ومن ثم في الحرب العالمية الثانية، التي أدّت بنتائجها الى فرض الهيمنة على كامل بحار أوروبا و«الشرق الأوسط» وجنوب شرق آسيا، ايّ بحار اليابان والبحر الأصفر وأجزاء من بحار الصين وغرب المحيط الهادئ. إلى جانب إقامتها عشرات القواعد العسكرية، البحرية والجوية والبرية في كلّ البلدان، التي «حرّرتها» أي احتلتها خلال تلك الحرب، سواءً في غرب أوروبا او في جنوب شرق آسيا.

وبقيت الولايات المتحدة، ورغم تطور الاتحاد السوفياتي وقواته البحرية وتصدّيها للبلطجة البحرية الأميركية، في كثير من بحار العالم، خاصة في البحر المتوسط، في مواجهة الأسطول السادس الأميركي، منذ أواسط خمسينيات القرن الماضي، أو في غرب المحيط الهادئ في منطقة جزيرة غوام، القريبة نسبياً من الساحل الجنوبي الشرقي لروسيا، حيث ميناء ڤلاديڤستوك المطلّ على بحر اليابان، أو في منطقة بحر الفلبين، إلى الجنوب من بحر اليابان، علاوة طبعاً على وقوف الأساطيل السوفياتية بالمرصاد، لأساطيل الولايات المتحدة في بحار أوروبا والمحيطات الواقعة في غرب وشرق الكرة الأرضية، نقول رغم ذلك فإنّ الولايات المتحدة بقيت، تُمارس سياسات الهيمنة نفسها، بواسطة القوة العسكرية، حتى بعد هزيمتها المنكرة في حرب فيتنام، سنة 1975، وفشلها في احتلال كامل شبه الجزيرة الكورية، إبان الحرب الكورية ‪1950 – 1953، ونجاح الاتحاد السوفياتي والصين الشعبية في حماية جمهورية كوريا الديموقراطية (الشمالية) من الاحتلال الأميركي، وبقائها شامخة في وجه هذا الاحتلال حتى يومنا هذا.

وهذا يعني أنّ العقيدة العسكرية الأميركية العدوانية لم تشهد ايّ تغيّر على جوهرها، بل انها شهدت بعض التغييرات على تكتيكات وأدوات تنفيذها، على الصعد الإقليمية والدولية. وفي هذا الإطار قامت الولايات المتحدة، باختراع حجة الإرهاب، بعد تفجيرات نيويورك سنة 2001 وشنها حرباً على أفغانستان، لا زالت دائرة حتى اليوم، ثم حربها الأولى والثانية على العراق واحتلاله وتدمير الدولة العراقية، وبعد محاولتها، عبر قاعدتها العسكرية المسماة «إسرائيل»، تدمير المقاومة في لبنان (حزب الله) سنة 2006 وفشلها في ذلك، ومن ثم اختراع ادوات جديدة، خدمة لاستراتيجية الهيمنة الأميركية واقامة حائط صدّ امام جمهورية الصين الشعبية، يمتد من جزيرة غوام شرقاً وحتى جبل طارق غرباً، منعاً لاستمرار تطور الصين الاقتصادي وتوسيع تعاونها مع هذا الفضاء الجغرافي والديموغرافي الواسع.

ولكن الصين الشعبية وروسيا الاتحادية لم تكونا غافلتين عن هذه المخططات الأميركية واهدافها وعواقبها التدميرية على العالم، الأمر الذي دفعهما، منذ حوالي عقدين من الزمن الى إطلاق مشاريع استثمار عملاقة، في العلوم والمعرفة والتكنولوجيا، وهي المشاريع التي أوصلت الدولتين الى مستوىً متقدم جداً، سواءً في الصناعات العسكرية أو في الصناعات الالكترونية الدقيقة المتعلقة بقطاع الاتصالات بشكل خاص. وهو القطاع الذي يتيح المجال لمن يملك التفوّق في صناعاته المختلفة، وهي الصين وروسيا وإيران حالياً، أن يكون له الدور الطليعي في التطور الاقتصادي والتحول الى القوة الاقتصادية الأولى في العالم.

ومن الجدير بالذكر أنّ ما نقوله ليس دعاية مؤيدة للدول المذكور أعلاه او انحيازاً سياسياً. لها وإنما هو تحليل للواقع الذي نعيشه والأسباب التي أسست لتطوره. فالولايات المتحدة قامت، خلال العقود الثلاثة الماضية، بإنفاق ما يزيد على ثلاثة تريليونات دولار على الحروب وشراء السلاح (البنتاغون تشتري)، بينما لم تنفق الدول الثلاث، المذكورة أعلاه، اكثر من تريليون دولار واحد على التسلح واستثمرت بقية مواردها في التطوير العلمي والتكنولوجي، والاقتصادي بالنتيجة.

وعوضاً عن ان تتعظ واشنطن من هزائم مشاريعها وسياسات الهيمنة التي اتبعتها، عبر العقود الثلاثة الماضية بشكل خاص، عمدت، وبعد تولي ترامب رئاسة الولايات المتحدة، الى الإعلان عن استراتيجية أمنية أميركية جديدة، سنة 2018، مكونة من 14 صفحة وصادرة عن البنتاغون، أسمتها: استراتيجية الولايات المتحدة الأميركية للدفاع الوطني.

وقد حدّدت فيها نصاً أنّ الاولوية، في هذه الاستراتيجية، تتمثل في مواجهة الخطر الداهم، على الولايات المتحدة، ومصدره الصين وروسيا وكذلك التصدّي للخطر المحتمل، من قبل الدول «المارقة» مثل كوريا الشمالية وإيران، وهو الأمر الذي يجعل من الضروري الاستثمار (زيادة الاتفاق العسكري) في تطوير القدرات العسكرية الأميركية اللازمة لبلوغ تلك الأهداف (التصدي للخطر الروسي الصيني الداهم والخطر الكوري الإيراني المحتمل).

وهذا يعني، في تقديرنا، أنّ جوهر هذه الاستراتيجية الجديدة يتلخص في ما يلي:

1

ـ تخلّي الولايات المتحدة عن استخدام أكذوبة الإرهاب، داعش وغيرها، التي اخترعتها وأدارتها واشنطن طوال العقد الماضي، والتركيز او اختراع خطر جديد تسميه هذه الاستراتيجية بالخطر الصيني الروسي الداهم وذلك الكوري الإيراني المحتمل.

2

ـ إن هذه الاستراتيجية ستقود، وبشكل منطقي وموضوعي، إلى تخلي الولايات المتحدة عن دول النفط العربية، خاصة في ظل انعدام قيمة هذه المادة حالياً وانتهاء دورها الاستراتيجي (الوظيفي) في السياسة الأميركي، الذي استمر قرابة قرن من الزمن.

3

ـ وغنيّ عن القول طبعاً إن هذا يعني، وفي ظل الأزمات والمآزق الأميركية الناجمة عن انتشار فيروس كورونا، ان سحب القوات الأميركية، من المنطقة العربية وافغانستان، وكذلك تخفيف الانتشار العسكري الأميركي في مناطق اخرى من العالم، قد أصبح حقيقة واقعة برسم التنفيذ، حتى لو تأخر ذلك بعض الشيء.

4

ـ ان قيام الولايات المتحدة بنشر ثلاث حاملات طائرات، هي رونالد ريغان وثيودور روزفلت ويو إس إس نيميتس، تحمل كل منها 60 طائرة حربية، حسب تصريح قائد قيادة المحيط الهندي والهادئ، الجنرال ستيفين كولَر ، لا يتعدّى كونه استعراض عضلات لن يؤدي حتى الى استفزاز الصين، التي تعلم تمام العلم أن هذه التحركات تهدف الى تعويض العجز والتراجع الاستراتيجي، الذي تعاني منه الولايات المتحدة، سواء. على الصعيد الاقتصادي او الصعيد العسكري.

5

ـ انه، وكما يقول الكاتب، الأميركي الاسرائيلي سيث فرانتس مان ، في موضوع نشره على موقع الجروزاليم بوست الإسرائيلية وكذلك على موقع ناشيونال ريڤيو بتاريخ 25/5/202، أننا وعلى عكس ظهور الولايات المتحدة الأميركية كقوة عظمى، قبل مئة عام، فإن جائحة كورونا وما سينتج عنها من كوارث دولية، ربما ستضع الاستراتيجيين الأميركيين في مواجهة احداث، هم غير مهيأين لمواجهتها، ستفضي الى جلوس الصين على عرش قيادة النظام العالمي.

ويتابع الكاتب قائلاً: إذا ما كانت الولايات المتحدة وحلفاؤها جديون، في حماية النظام الليبرالي، فإنّ عليهم التحرك بسرعة، وإلا فإننا سنرى، خلال 25 سنة، متغيّرات سريعة شبيهة بتلك التي حصلت قبل مئة عام. ولكنها هذه المرة لن تنتهي بسيطرة الولايات المتحدة، وإنما ستنتهي بجلوس الصين الشعبية وروسيا وإيران في مقعد القيادة.

يهلك ملوكاً ويستخلف آخرين.

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