USA v. Distinguished Iranian/American Journalist Marzieh Hashemi

By Stephen Lendman
Source

Distinguished Press TV journalist/anchor’s unlawful arrest, detention and mistreatment by the FBI, on the pretext of being a material witness regarding a case her family knows nothing about, gave the US another international black eye.

What happened captured world headlines, hopefully enough to help hasten Marzieh’s release. Press TV, the Tehran Times, and other Iranian media continue giving the case extensive coverage.

International print and electronic media have had feature stories on what happened – including RT, Sputnik News, the NYT, Washington Post, AP News, Reuters, CBS, NBC, and ABC News, CNN, Fox News, Al Jazeera, the BBC, London Guardian, Haaretz, and numerous other outlets.

They’ve elevated Marzieh’s status as a distinguished international journalist to an even higher level than before what happened – by highlighting her unacceptable arrest, detention, and mistreatment uncharged. 

They explained what the NYT wrote as follows, saying “no reason (was) given for her arrest…(H)er Islamic head scarf (was) forcibly removed…(S)he was chained hand and foot, and…denied access to halal food and had eaten only crackers.”

Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif denounced what happened, saying “(t)he custody of Iran’s reporter in the US is highly political, and she should be released immediately.”

Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Bahram Qassemi said the following:

“The imprisonment of a reporter who is nonwhite and enters the US demonstrates how the approach of Mr. Trump’s government is based on racist and discriminatory policies within an apartheid regime. We hope that this innocent person is unconditionally released soon.”

Tehran Times editor Muhammad Qaderi said her mistreatment shows the real face of the US to the world community.

The Iranian High Council for Human Rights called “her violent and humiliating treatment” a brazen example of arbitrary arrest and detention, accusing the US of “illegal, unjustifiable and anti-human rights measures” – a flagrant violation of her fundamental rights, how Washington operates domestically and abroad.

Program coordinator for the Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) Alexandra Ellerbeck expressed concern about Marzieh’s arrest and detention. She “call(ed) on the US Department of Justice to immediately disclose the basis for her detention…”

Her colleague and friend Nader Talevzadeh called her arrest a “concocted (US) plan,” part of its hostility toward the Islamic Republic. “This is intimidation and a provocation against Iran,” he stressed.

Marzieh is unlawfully held by the FBI at an undisclosed Washington location with minimal family contact and no legal representation for days. 

Reportedly a lawyer has now been appointed on her behalf. Most so-called public defenders woefully ill-serve clients with little time available to present a proper defense everyone deserves in judicial proceedings.

According to federal authorities, Marzieh appeared twice before a US district judge on Friday, an appointed lawyer representing her.

A partially unsealed order for her arrest and detention provided no information about what happened and why, other than she’s held as a material witness to an unspecified criminal case her family knows nothing about.

She’s detained to give grand jury testimony. Witnesses before these proceedings are only present during their testimony to a prosecutor and grand jurors, no judge or legal representation present. 

Conducted to determine if a crime was committed, proceedings are secret, a majority of jurors required for an indictment to be issued.

Witnesses are required to answer questions by a prosecutor and jurors, criminal suspect(s) usually not present during proceedings.

Prosecutors try to establish probable cause to indict. They manipulate grand juries, gaming the system to get judgments they seek, justice denied time and again. Proceedings often amount to a sword for injustice, not a shield against it.

Witnesses accused of nothing can be indicted if prosecutors claim they gave false or misleading testimonies. They’re not told of the risk, making them vulnerable if this was the prosecutorial intent for demanding their testimony.

Clever ones can manipulate witnesses to unwittingly mislead. Anything said under oath or otherwise can be used against them. Given extreme US hostility toward Iran, Marzieh is vulnerable to a gross miscarriage of justice – besides what she’s endured so far.

A US citizen working in Iran for the past decade, dividing her time between both countries, she explained her conversion to Islam as follows, saying she “was born in a religious Christian family, and since 26 or 27 years ago I have become Muslim,” adding: 

“For me, embracing Islam is directly in relation to Islamic revolution of Iran and the characteristic of Imam Khomeini.” 

“When I was a student in America, I witnessed that the Iranian students are so active and I was so interested in political activities then, I used to ask them about their activities and purposes, why you protest?” 

“And they used to talk about the cruelty of the overset king and Imam Khomeini to me, and this was the first step for me becoming Muslim.” 

“I was looking for the truth and I wasn’t satisfied with my own religion, and I had no solution for the problem that the God has three parts of the Father, and the Son, and the holy Sprit, But still where one?” 

“I wasn’t convinced with answers when I asked from different people, when this issue happened to be in university, I started to study not only about Islam but about different religions, and simultaneously comparing them in theory and ideology, from Max Weber up to now, and thank God after I became Muslim.”

Explaining her career in journalism, she said “I am a Press TV correspondent and the editor in chief of Mahjubah magazine in America. I am a presenter and political analyst.” 

“Press TV is the first 24-hour English Channel in Iran. From the beginning of the Attack of America against Iraq, the people are watching it to know about the stand point of Iran and what Iran says, because the other channels weren’t covering the war, and it played a considerable role in Israel’s (undeclared war on) Gaza, so people are watching it to find out the truth and reality.”

Marzieh’s son Hossein fears she’ll be detained for an indefinite period, hopeful things will turn out otherwise, saying “(i)t doesn’t look like that’s going to happen. (W)e’re waiting to hear more.”

In March 2011, Obama’s Executive Order 13567 authorized indefinite detentions and military commission trials – violating America’s Fifth Amendment, stating:

“No person…shall be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law” – constitutional law the US consistently breaches.

In December 2011, America’s National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) legitimized unconstitutional and international law prohibited indefinite detentions – everyone potentially vulnerable, including US citizens without just cause.

No proof is needed, no habeas, due process or equal protection afforded anyone targeted. The 1215 Magna Carta states the following:

“No free man (woman or child) shall be seized, or imprisoned, or stripped of his (or her) rights or possessions, or outlawed, or exiled, or deprived of his (or her) standing in any other way, nor will we proceed with force against him (or her), or send others to do so, except by the lawful judgment of his (or her) equals, or by the law of the land.”

“Due process of law” later substituted for “the law of the land.” It’s inviolable, breaching it flagrantly unconstitutional. The Fifth Amendment’s due process guarantee applies to US federal, state and local governance, no exceptions permitted.

Yet targeted individuals are extrajudicially arrested and detained at home and abroad, held indefinitely uncharged and untried, based on suspicions, hearsay, secret evidence, or any other pretext.

Constitutional law and Supreme Court rulings, affirming the inviolability of due process and equal protection rights, are breached by the US time and again.

Friday district court proceedings provided no information about Marziah’s detention, other than explaining she’s not accused of a crime – not so far.

What the Trump regime has in mind is unknown until things unfold ahead. Marziah is being used, a victim of US contempt for the fundamental rights of everyone, doing whatever it pleases unaccountably.

Reuters cited an unnamed US federal source, saying Press TV is being investigated as an Iranian “propaganda outlet.”

It’s a preeminent truth-telling news service, featuring distinguished guests, providing in-depth information on major world issues, explaining what everyone needs to know.

It’s polar opposite managed news misinformation and disinformation featured by US and other Western media, suppressing what should be featured.

It’s unclear what’s ahead for Marzieh. It’s very clear that her arrest, detention and mistreatment constitute flagrant constitutional and international law violations.

What happened to her and countless others in America can happen to anyone. Their struggle for justice is ours!

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Trump Retreats from His Promise of Withdrawal While Al-Qaeda Makes Progress in Syria

By Elijah. J. Magnier
Source

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Al-Nusra front – al-Qaeda rebranded as HTS (Hay’at Tahrir al-Sham) – is expanding its influence and military control over entire Syrian cities and villages in northern and western rural Aleppo. Abu Mohammad al-Joulani, the ex- ISIS (the Islamic State terror group) Emir of Syria and the self proclaimed Emir of al-Qaeda in the Levant, is ordering his forces to move towards Idlib and its rural area, mainly against the cities of Ariha, Jabal al-Zawiya and Maarrat al-No’man. His aim is to complete the control by his jihadists of the entire area defined in the Astana talks – by Russia and Turkey – where a ceasefire was established last year in order to stop the advance of the Syrian army to recover the northern territory. Idlib and its surroundings is today the location where the greatest number of jihadists ever to be united in one single geographic area in the Middle East are gathered. They are fully armed with the most advanced US weapons, notably guided anti-tank TOW missiles and armed drones, together with hundreds of suicide bombers ready to fight and die.

Up to now, Joulani has managed to dissolve over 14 Syrian armed groups, described by the West as “moderate”. These groups were financed and equipped by Turkey, whose forces have not reacted so far and have allowed Joulani’s group to consolidate power. Turkey’s policy may undermine the Astana deal, which aims to eliminate the presence and force of jihadists in the north of Syria.

Meanwhile, the US president Donald Trump – who has claimed that ISIS is already defeated and that in Syria “there is only death and sand” – and his establishment are doubling back on the previously announced schedule of withdrawal from Syria: The President’s national security advisor John Bolton said on Sunday that the US will consider withdrawing when ISIS is defeated and Turkey ensures the safety of US-allied Kurdish fighters. Trump is aware that ISIS is located in only 3 or 4 villages today along the east of the Euphrates river, on the DeirEzzour-al Qaem front. It is clear that the US establishment is exerting pressure on the inexperienced President to slow down withdrawal from Syria. But there are further, undeclared arguments for this sudden change of plan.

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Firstly, from the military and geo-political standpoint, the US has a lot to lose in pulling out of the Levant. Its presence is effectively hassling Iran and its allies, and it is disturbing Russia, Syria and Iraq who consider the forces of Washington a continuous source of trouble. The US does not seem willing to see the end of ISIS, a group that Israel has repeatedly said it would rather see in control of Syria. The presence of US occupation forces in Northeast Syria is considered a platform for it to continue exerting US hegemony on the Middle East; the US presence is, from Israel’s point of view, a welcome source of friction between two superpowers operating on the same territory in Syria.

Secondly, the Iraqi parliament is waving in the face of Trump the serious possibility of ordering US forces to pull out of Iraq. Trump triggered the Iraqi reaction by rebuffing protocol and refusing to meet the Iraqi Prime Minister, Speaker and President on Iraqi soil during his recent visit to the Iraqi-US base in Ayn al-Assad in Anbar, Iraq.

If Iraq pushes the US forces out of Mesopotamia, these will be completely out of the Levant as well – if Trump fulfils his promises to withdraw in 30 days to four months – to the detriment of US-Israeli interests in the Middle East.

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Thirdly, it cannot be ruled out that the new conquests of al-Qaeda in Syria might offer an additional pretext for the US establishment to slow down or even reject the idea of withdrawal from Syria. The Russia-Turkey-Iran Astana deal had stopped any attack on the city and rural area of Idlib at a time when the US establishment was ready to bomb the Syrian army on the false pretext that Damascus intended to use chemical weapons in the area. The Astana deal took away any possibility for the US to be an active player in Syria. Moreover, the meeting in Moscow last month between Russia and Turkey led to agreement to freeze any Turkish advance towards the area of Manbij, allowing the Syrian army to take up a position in the area and for the YPG Kurds to pull out their forces, to the displeasure of Washington. That also disturbed Washington’s plans to see Ankara’s forces (not Damascus’s) replacing the US occupation forces after their departure. The presence of the US in North-East Syria was fast becoming meaningless.

A new development then forced itself onto Syrian geopolitics. The rebranded Al-Qaeda in the Levant (HTS), along with its foreign fighters, took control of the demarcation line established by Astana between Turkey and Russia. This gives the Russian and Syrian forces the legitimacy to bomb the al-Qaeda controlled area and to disregard the Astana deal. Turkey, meanwhile, is not interfering in the events of the last week and seems unwilling to finish off the jihadists as it had previously agreed to do in discussions with Russia.

Today al-Qaeda is eliminating many of Turkey’s allies and those who were financed, armed and trained by the US. Nevertheless, if Syria and Russia retain their initial plan to attack Idlib, the US will find a new opportunity to bomb the Syrian army and to intervene and disrupt Moscow’s plan to end the Syrian war.

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Al-Qaeda’s control of the demarcation line will – no doubt – trigger a confrontation with the Syrian army. Al-Qaeda will likely bomb Aleppo so as to claim it is reviving the Syrian revolution and rejecting any deal with Damascus. Abu Mohammad al-Joulani, the ex-ISIS emir and leader of HTS, claims that president Erdogan of Turkey is “Kafer” (a disbeliever), and that therefore no forces would fight under the Turkish flag even though the Turkish presence in Syria is allowing Joulani’s power to grow as Turkey offers necessary logistics and supply lines to his group.

Among the Joulani commanders, there were (and many still are active) – to name a few – the Libyan Abu Usama (Intel officer in Idlib), the Jordanians Sami al-Aridi (scholar and religious leader), Abu Julayleb (Emir of Lattakia), Abu Hussein (Emir of Idlib), Abu al-Yaman (head of the “army”), Abu Hafas (intel officer), the Egyptians Abu al-Yaqzan (religious affairs), Abu Abdallah (religious affair Lattakia), and the Tunisians Abu Omar (Justice and religious affairs), Abu Haidara (religious affairs Idlib). Thousands of foreign fighters fight among its ranks and others have moved towards Hurras al-Deen (HAD) and Jabhat Ansar al-Deen (JAD), a more radical version of HTS. Today al-Joulani is providing a perfect justification for US occupation forces to stay in Syria, waiting for further developments, and possibly a reshuffle of the power on the ground.

ISIS is no longer a threat to the US. In fact, it holds today Al-Susah, Morashida, Safafina and al-Shajlah, all under the protection of US forces. Therefore, the terror group doesn’t represent a reason for Trump to keep occupying Syrian territory. Moreover, Bolton is asking Turkey to offer guarantee to protect the YPG Kurds, the Syrian branch of the PKK, the sworn enemy of Turkey and a group on the US State Department terrorist list.

Bolton is basically demanding from Turkey the impossible, showing the weakness of a President whose administration forces him to continuously recant on his promises. US intentions towards Syria don’t correspond to the positive response evoked by Trump’s initial promise to pull out US troops, even if Russia, Iran and Syria never believed him. Nevertheless, Damascus considers it is high time for the Kurds to choose their side and drop their protection of the US so as to force their early departure.

Seven Gates of Damascus and Concrete Walls of Kabul

By Andre Vltchek
Source

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Two terrible wars, two mighty destructions, but two absolutely opposite outcomes.

In Syria, it may be autumn now, but almost the entire country is blossoming again, literally rising from ashes. Two thousand miles east from there, Afghanistan is smashed against its ancient rocks, bleeding and broken. There, it does not really matter what season it is; life is simply dreadful and hope appears to be in permanent exile.

Damascus, the ancient and splendid capital of Syria, now the Syrian Arab Republic, is back to life again. People go out until late at night, there are events; there is music and vibrant social life. Not all, but many are smiling again. Checkpoints are diminishing, and now one does not even have to go through metal detectors in order to enter museums, cafes and some of the international hotels.

The people of Damascus are optimistic, some of them are ecstatic. They fought hard, they lost hundreds of thousands of men, women and children, but they won! They finally won, against all odds, supported by their true friends and comrades. They are proud of what they have achieved, and rightly so!

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Humiliated on so many occasions, for so long, the Arab people suddenly rose and demonstrated to the world and to themselves that they can defeat invaders, no matter how powerful they are; no matter how canny and revolting their tactics are. As I wrote on several previous occasions, Aleppo is the ‘Stalingrad of the Middle East’. It is a mighty symbol. There, fascism and imperialism were stopped. Unsurprisingly, because of its stamina, courage and aptitude, the center of Pan-Arabism – Syria – has become, once again, the most important country for the freedom-loving people of the region.

Syria has many friends, among them China, Iran, Cuba and Venezuela. But the most determined of them, the most reliable, remains Russia.

The Russians stood by its historical ally, even when things looked bad, almost hopeless; even when the terrorists trained and implanted into Syria by the West, Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Turkey, were flattening entire ancient cities, and millions of refugees flowing out of the country, through the all seven gates of Damascus, and from all major cities, as well as towns and villages.

The Russians worked hard, often ‘behind the scenes’; on the diplomatic front, but also on the frontlines, providing essential air support, de-mining entire neighborhoods, helping with food supplies, logistics, strategy. Russians died in Syria, we do not know the precise numbers, but there definitely were casualties; some even say, ‘substantial’. However, Russia never waved its flag, never beat its chest in self-congratulatory gestures. What had to be done, was done, as an internationalist duty; quietly, proudly and with great courage and determination.

The Syrian people know all this; they understand, and they are grateful. For both nations, words are not necessary; at least not now. Their deep fraternal alliance is sealed. They fought together against darkness, terror and neo-colonialism, and they won.

When Russian military convoys pass through Syrian roads, there is no security. They stop at local eateries to refresh themselves, they talk to locals. When Russian people walk through Syrian cities, they feel no fear. They are not seen or treated as a ‘foreign military force’. They are now part of Syria. They are part of the family. Syrians make them feel at home.

In Kabul, I always face walls. Walls are all around me; concrete walls, as well as barbed wire.

Some walls are as tall as 4-5 storey buildings, with watchtowers on every corner, outfitted with bulletproof glass.

Local people, pedestrians, look like sleep-walkers. They are resigned. They are used to those hollow barrels of guns pointed at their heads, chests, feet, even at their children.

Almost everyone here is outraged by the occupation, but no one knows what to do; how to resist. The NATO invasion force is both brutal and overwhelming; its commanders and soldiers are cold, calculating, and merciless, obsessed with protecting themselves and only themselves.

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Heavily armored British and US military convoys are ready to shoot at ‘anything that moves’ even in a vaguely hostile fashion.

Afghan people get killed, almost all of them‘surgically’ or ‘remotely’. Western lives are ‘too precious’ for engaging in honest man-to-man combat. Slaughtering is done by drones, by ‘smart bombs’, or by shooting from those monstrous vehicles that crisscross Afghan cities and the countryside.

During this outrageous occupation, it matters nil how many Afghan civilians get killed, as long as the US or European lives get spared. Most of the Western soldiers deployed in Afghanistan are professionals. They are not defending their country. They are paid to do ‘their job’, efficiently, at any price. And of course, “Safety First”. Safety for themselves.

After the West occupied Afghanistan in 2001, between 100,000 and 170,000 Afghan civilians have been killed. Millions were forced to leave their country as refugees. Afghanistan now ranks second from the bottom (after Yemen) in Asia, on the HDI list (Human Development Index, compiled by UNDP). Its life expectancy is the lowest in Asia (WHO).

I work in both Syria and Afghanistan, and consider it my duty to point at the differences between two countries, and these two wars.

Both Syria and Afghanistan were attacked by the West. One resisted and won, the other one was occupied by mainly North American and European forces, and consequently destroyed.

After working in some 160 countries on this planet, and after covering and witnessing countless wars and conflicts (most of them ignited or provoked by the West and its allies), I can clearly see the pattern: almost all the countries that fell into the ‘Western sphere of influence’are now ruined, plundered and destroyed; they are experiencing great disparities between the tiny number of ‘elites’ (individuals who collaborate with the West) and the great majority of those who live in poverty. Most of the countries with close ties to Russia or China (or both), are prospering and developing, enjoying self-governance and respect for their cultures, political systems, and economic structures.

It is only because of the corporate mass media and biased education system, as well as the almost fully pro-Western orientation of the ‘social media’, that these shocking contrasts between two blocs (yes, we have two major blocs of countries, again) are not constantly highlighted and discussed.

During my recent visit to Syria, I spoke to many people living in Damascus, Homs, and Ein Tarma.

What I witnessed could be often described as“joy through tears”. The price of victory has been steep. But joy it is, nevertheless. The unity of the Syrian people and their government is obvious and remarkable.

Anger towards the ‘rebels’ and towards the West is ubiquitous. I will soon describe the situation in my upcoming reports. But this time, I only wanted to compare the situation in two cities, two countries and two wars.

In Damascus, I feel like writing poetry, again. In Kabul, I am only inspired to write a long and depressing obituary.

I love both of these ancient cities, but of course, I love them differently.

Frankly speaking, in the 18 years of Western occupation, Kabul has been converted into a militarized, fragmented and colonized hell on earth. Everybody knows it: the poor know it, and even the government is aware of it.

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In Kabul, entire neighborhoods already ‘gave up’. They are inhabited by individuals who are forced to live in gutters, or under bridges. Many of those people are stoned, hooked on locally made narcotics, the production of which is supported by the Western occupation armies. I saw and photographed a US military base openly surrounded by poppy plantations. I heard testimonies of local people, about the British military engaging in negotiations, and cooperating with the local narco-mafias.

Now the Western embassies, NGO’s and ‘international organizations’ operating in Afghanistan, have managed to intellectually and morally corrupt and indoctrinate a substantial group of local people, who are receiving scholarship, getting ‘trained’ in Europe, and are tugging the official line of the occupiers.

They are working day and night to legitimize the nightmare into which their country has been tossed.

But older people who still remember both the Soviet era and socialist Afghanistan, are predominantly ‘pro-Russian’, mourning in frustration those days of Afghan liberation, progress, and determined building of the nation. ‘Soviet’ bread factories, water channels, pipelines, electric high-voltage towers, and schools are still used to this day, all over the country. While, gender equality, secularism, and the anti-feudalist struggle of those days are now, during the Western occupation, de facto illegal.

Afghans are known to be proud and determined people. But now their pride has been broken, while determination has been drowned in the sea of pessimism and depression. The Western occupation did not bring peace, it did not bring prosperity, independence of democracy (if democracy is understood as the ‘rule of the people’).

These days, the biggest dream of a young man or woman in Kabul is to serve the occupiers – to get ‘educated’ in a Western-style school, and to get a job at a US embassy or at one of the UN agencies.

In Damascus, everyone is now talking about the rebuilding of the nation.

‘How and when will the damaged neighborhoods be rebuilt? Is the pre-war construction of the metro going to resume anytime soon? Is life going to be better than before?’

People cannot wait. I witnessed families, communities, restoring their own buildings, houses and streets.

Yes, in Damascus I saw true revolutionary optimism in action, optimism which I described in my recent book Revolutionary Optimism, Western Nihilism”. Because the Syrian state itself is now, once again, increasingly revolutionary. The so-called ‘opposition’ has been mostly nothing else other than a Western-sponsored subversion; an attempt to take Syria back to the dark days of colonialism.

Damascus and the Syrian government do not need tremendous walls, enormous spy blimps levitating in the sky; they do not need armored vehicles at every corner and the omnipresent SUV’s with deadly machine guns.

On the other hand, the occupiers of Kabul need all those deadly symbols of power in order to maintain control. Still they cannot scare people into supporting or loving them.

In Damascus, I simply walked into the office of my fellow novelist, who happened to be the Syrian Minister of Education. In Kabul, I often have to pass through metal detectors even when I just want to visit a toilet.

In Damascus, there is hope, and life, at every corner. Cafes are packed, people talk, argue, laugh together, and smoke waterpipes. Museums and libraries are full of people too. The Opera House is performing; the zoo is flourishing, all despite the war, despite all the difficulties.

In Kabul, life stopped. Except for the traffic, and for traditional markets. Even the National Museum is now a fortress, and as a result, almost no one can be found inside.

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People in Damascus are not too familiar with what goes on in Kabul. But they know plenty about Baghdad, Tripoli and Gaza. And they would rather die than allow themselves to be occupied by the West or its implants.

Two wars, two fates, two totally distinct cities.

The seven gates of Damascus are wide open. Refugees are returning from all directions, from all corners of the world. It is time for reconciliation, for rebuilding the nation, for making Syria even greater than it was before the conflict.

Kabul, often rocked by explosions, is fragmented by horrid walls. Engines of helicopters are roaring above. Blimps with their deadly eyes monitoring everything on the ground. Drones, tanks, huge armored vehicles. Beggars, homeless people, slums. Huge Afghan flag flying above Kabul. A ‘modified flag’, not the same as in the socialist past.

In Syria, finally the united nation has managed to defeat imperialism, fanaticism and sectarianism.

In Afghanistan, the nation got divided, then humiliated, then stripped of its former glory.

Damascus belongs to its people. In Kabul, people are dwarfed by concrete walls and military bases erected by foreign invaders.

In Damascus, people were fighting, even dying for their country and their city.

In Kabul, people are scared to even speak about fighting for freedom.

Damascus won. It is free again.

Kabul will win, too. Perhaps not today, not this year, but it will. I believe it will.

I love both cities. But one is now celebrating, while the other one is still suffering, in unimaginable pain.

Mass Psychosis and The Church of Humanitarian Interventionism

Mass Psychosis and The Church of Humanitarian Interventionism

January 03, 2019

by David Penner for The Saker Blog

Ask any American liberal aged sixty-five and older what they think about Franco, Mussolini, or Hitler and they will vehemently denounce these men as tyrants, murderers, and despots. Ask them what they think about the Vietnam War and they will say it was a tragedy, not only for the Vietnamese, but for the poor American soldiers who were drafted and used as cannon fodder. Liberals also once defended the civil rights movement and the New Deal while vigorously opposing McCarthyism. That these same people would go on to support deunionization, resegregation, and Russophobia while enthusiastically backing barbarous wars and interventions in Yugoslavia, Libya, Syria, Yemen, Iraq, Afghanistan and Ukraine constitutes not only a betrayal of leftist principles, but is indicative of a rejection of reason and the reality-based world.

Like the proverbial general always fighting the last war, liberals remain trapped in the past, unable to adapt to rapidly unfolding kinetic developments. The problem is that not only is this general fighting the last war, this is a general that can no longer distinguish between right and left and has lost any semblance of a moral compass.

There’s a Hitler on The Danube

One could argue that the new Cold War began with Bill Clinton bringing Poland, Hungary, and the Czech Republic into NATO. For Russians that were not yet alarmed by this perfidy, their red lines were irrefutably crossed with the NATO destruction of Yugoslavia and the bombing of Serbia, regarded by Russians as a brotherly nation. This constituted an illegal war of aggression, and was carried out without a mandate from the United Nations Security Council. Indeed, the NATO destruction of Yugoslavia initiated an unraveling of international law and marked an erosion in the equilibrium between the great powers.

As Noam Chomsky has noted, Yugoslavia was marked for destruction, because unlike the other formerly communist European countries they did not embrace privatization. The destruction of Yugoslavia was not only a violation of the UN Charter, but was also the first “humanitarian intervention” following the collapse of the USSR that liberals were duped into embracing. In an article on the RT website titled “15 years on: Looking back at NATO’s ‘humanitarian’ bombing of Yugoslavia,” the author writes, “NATO demonstrated in 1999 that it can do whatever it wants under the guise of ‘humanitarian intervention,’ ‘war on terror,’ or ‘preventive war’ – something that everyone has witnessed in subsequent years in different parts of the globe.”

While Milošević and the Serbs were marked for demonization due to their lack of enthusiasm for neoliberal “reforms,” Croatian secessionists (many of whom subscribed to a neo-Nazi and neo-Ustasha ideology), Muslim fundamentalists in Bosnia, and the terrorist Kosovo Liberation Army (KLA) were supported by the West. Brigadier-General Pierre Marie Gallois of the French Army has condemned the NATO destruction of Yugoslavia, and has gone on record stating that the endless stories of Serb atrocities, such as mass rapes and the siege of Sarajevo were fabricated. Gallois also argues that the German elite sought revenge for the fierce Serb resistance during the two world wars, especially with regard to the Serb partisans that held up German divisions that were headed towards Leningrad and Moscow during Operation Barbarossa. While relentlessly demonized, the Serbs were in many ways the greatest victims of the NATO-orchestrated Balkan wars, as hundreds of thousands of Serbs were forcibly expelled from both Croatia and Kosovo while Serbia was turned into a free-fire zone by NATO for over seventy days. Washington took advantage of the conflict to solidify control over its European vassals.

During the aerial campaign, between ten and fifteen tons of depleted uranium were dropped on Serbia resulting in extremely high rates of cancer. The Independent coyly informed its readers that the forced expulsion of Serbs from Croatia, which they refer to as an “exodus” – is a great mystery – a “riddle.” The only “riddle” is how liberals can denounce genocide and speak ad nauseam about human rights while supporting neo-Nazi regimes, such as the Poroshenko government in Kiev and the Tudjman government in Croatia, which have perpetrated genocidal war crimes in broad daylight. The forced expulsion of Serbs from Croatia was eventually reported by The New York Times, but four years too late. Liberal-backed jihadists in Libya and Syria have likewise carried out one ethnic cleansing after another.

Endless calls by the mainstream press to stop the evil Serbs from establishing a “greater Serbia” were blatant propaganda, as there was no way that the hundreds of thousands of Serbs in Bosnia, Croatia, and Kosovo could have “invaded” these territories, as they had already been living there for centuries. Indeed, this very scenario holds true for the ethnic Russians in the Donbass. Moreover, as the mass media was busy vilifying the Serbs, behind the scenes American diplomats had no illusions about who they were dealing with, referring to the Croatian nationalists as “our junkyard dogs.”

In an article titled “The Rational Destruction of Yugoslavia,” Michael Parenti writes:

Tudjman presided over the forced evacuation of over half a million Serbs from Croatia between 1991 and 1995, replete with rapes and summary executions. This included the 200,000 from Krajina in 1995, whose expulsion was facilitated by attacks from NATO war planes and missiles. Needless to say, U.S. leaders did nothing to stop and much to assist these atrocities, while the U.S. media looked the other way.

Kosovo was also prized by the Western elites because of its rich deposits of coal, lead, zinc, cadmium, gold and silver valued in the billions of dollars. The tragic balkanization of Yugoslavia, where brother was pitted against brother, brought about the destruction of a non-aligned country with a nationalized economy thereby bolstering the power of Western finance capital.  Of the NATO bombings, Parenti posits that, “To destroy publicly-run Yugoslav factories that produced auto parts, appliances, or fertilizer…is to enhance the investment value of western producers. And every television or radio station closed down by NATO troops or blown up by NATO bombs extends the monopolizing dominance of the western media cartels. The aerial destruction of Yugoslavia’s social capital served that purpose.”

Lamentably, all of this was drowned out by the mass media’s vilification of the Serbs. An article in The Guardian titled “Serbs enslaved Muslim women at rape camps” encapsulates perfectly how Western liberals were duped into embracing a war which was waged for no other reason than to fortify the power of US and NATO hegemony. This propaganda is particularly galling in light of the fact that women’s rights have been thrown back into the Stone Age precisely in the very countries which have come under attack by Washington and her proxies, such as Libya, jihadist-occupied Syria, Iraq, Afghanistan and Ukraine.

“Save Benghazi” and More Humanitarian Psychosis

Repeated calls by the presstitutes to “save Benghazi” sufficed to obtain liberal support for a war of aggression that has left Libya in such a state of anarchy and chaos, that Libyans who have been unable to flee the country are now trapped in a failed state where warring militias vie for power. In an article in Foreign Affairs titled “Obama’s Libya Debacle,” Alan J. Kuperman writes, “With Moscow’s acquiescence, the United Nations Security Council had approved the establishment of a no-fly zone in Libya and other measures to protect civilians. But NATO exceeded that mandate to pursue regime change.”

Under Gaddafi Libyans enjoyed a high standard of living, and health care and education were free. Gaddafi’s desire to set up a gold-backed dinar put him in the crosshairs of the Western elites, as this would have liberated Africans from domination by the World Bank and the IMF through establishing a common gold-backed currency. Alas, this was lost on the human rights crusaders of the holier-than-thou faux left.

Libya, which formerly had the highest standard of living in Africa, has been annihilated as a nation state. Slave markets are a legacy of this great “humanitarian intervention,” as are pogroms carried out against black Africans, formerly given refuge by the Gaddafi regime. An article in The Telegraph, which appeared in March of 2011, titled “Libya crisis: Benghazi fights for its life as Gaddafi attacks,” was one of countless articles in the mainstream press that incited messianic liberals into supporting a war of aggression against a people that had become too independent.

Once a country is marked for destruction by the Western elites no story is too outrageous, as evidenced by Susan Rice’s claim that Gaddafi supplied his troops with Viagra so that they could more effectively carry out mass rapes. This barbaric destruction of a sovereign state was summed up by liberal icon Hillary Clinton, who when asked about the brutal murder of Gaddafi, happily blurted out “We came! We saw! He died!

In what constituted the most genocidal invasion of a country following the end of the Vietnam War, Iraq was marked for annihilation after Saddam Hussein made the decision to sell oil in euros. In a rare moment of candor from a high priest of liberalism, Madeleine Albright, when asked about the half a million children that died due to the Clinton-backed sanctions, replied “We think the price is worth it.” This chilling remark underscores the fact that, contrary to liberal theology, the destruction of Iraq was perpetrated with equal fervor by both parties. Incredibly, even after spending trillions of dollars systematically destroying Iraqi social and political institutions, Washington failed to install a puppet government in Baghdad which has forged alliances with Tehran, Damascus, and Moscow.

Liberal saint Obama, in comparing the reunification of Crimea and Russia with the Iraq War, informs us that the “annexation of Crimea” – which was enthusiastically backed by the overwhelming majority of Crimeans – was worse than the invasion of Iraq, which resulted in a million deaths, destroyed a civilization and fueled the rise of ISIS.

As if her abysmal record makes her a Marxist scholar, Albright now warns Americans of the dangers of fascism, her implication of course being that the rise of Trump represents a threat to our democracy. Perhaps the Donald’s desire to pursue detente with Russia, and the fact that he has yet to start any new wars are what liberals are really upset about.

The Obama administration’s support for the Saudi war on Yemen is yet another impressive achievement for the liberal class, and has yielded such an earthly paradise that Yemenis have resorted to eating leaves to survive. For this extravaganza of mass murder the presstitutes didn’t even bother coming up with a fictitious narrative, allowing the salt of the earth to set aside their pom-poms for a while and take a nap.

Syria: Mass Murder in Paradise

Unsurprisingly, the mass media had no trouble duping imaginary leftists into believing that Syrians were being indiscriminately slaughtered by the Syrian Arab Army and the evil Russians. Unbeknownst to The Guardian and The New York Times, the US military presence in Syria is illegal, while Russian and Iranian military personnel are there at the invitation of the Syrian government. The Obama administration and its vassals are clearly responsible for the carnage in Syria, as they poured billions of dollars into backing the many jihadist groups. The mass media also hoodwinked liberals into thinking that the US military has been fighting ISIS, when they have used ISIS along with Al-Nusra Front and other illegal armed formations, as proxies with which to wage war on Syrian society. If Washington were battling the jihadists in Syria, why would they simultaneously be antagonists with the Syrian government and the Russians, who together saved Syria from being overrun by these very barbarians? Indeed, such questions have become a form of unmitigated heresy.

Articles such as “The Effects of Suspending American Aid to Moderate Syrian Opposition Groups,” by Hosam al-Jablawi, which appeared on The Atlantic Council’s website, seek to further the fallacy that the militants have been mostly democratic and secular. Washington and her vassals have poured enormous amounts of weaponry into the conflict zone, and Israeli weapons have been discovered in Syrian territories liberated from Daesh. That German machine guns from the Second World War have been discovered in some of these hideouts is symbolic of the true intentions of these murderous and sociopathic gangs.

The New York Post has referred to the jihadists in Syria as “freedom fighters.” While this may not be regarded as a “liberal” publication, an even more inane sentiment was expressed on Democracy Now, where Amy Goodman discussed the fighting in Eastern Ghouta with Rawya Rageh, Alia Malek, and Wendy Pearlman. Throughout the entire discussion of what can only be called an imaginary war, the fact that a large swath of Syria was taken over by jihadists, many of whom were not even Syrians but foreigners, is not even mentioned. In this cloud-cuckoo-land that passes for journalism the militants do not even exist. Assad and Putin are simply killing as many Syrians as possible, and doing so in an orgy of gratuitous savagery.

An article in The Guardian titled “You’re on your own, US tells Syrian rebels, as Assad goes on offensive” is deliberately written with the intention of stirring up liberal outrage over “indifference in the face of genocide,” and seeks to evoke memories of the Holocaust, the appeasement of Hitler, and the defeat of the Republicans by the forces of Franco. Meanwhile, independent media is shunned by liberals, who dismiss efforts at real journalism and political analysis as “conspiracy theory.” Thankfully for the insane, there is no shortage of good reading material.

Moscow has repeatedly maintained that the Syrian Arab Army is no longer in possession of chemical weapons, and there is ample evidence that the chemical attacks in Syria are false flag operations carried out by the jihadists to justify NATO aerial attacks on the Syrian Arab Army and Syrian infrastructure. Clearly, these incidents make for great Hollywood and have been extremely effective in stirring up gullible liberals who proceed to bray, as if on cue, for another regime change.

Tied to the mass media’s obsession with accusing Assad of “gassing his own people” are the White Helmets, who have been funded by the West, and who are clearly allied with the jihadists. The White Helmets played a critical role in duping liberal fundamentalists into thinking that there was a democratic uprising in Syria, and that the West must intervene “to put an end to the suffering.” Time will tell if Washington truly ceases all military operations in this war-ravaged country.

Forgotten Killing Fields: Afghanistan and Ukraine

The invasion and military occupation of Afghanistan was sold as a war to free oppressed women. An article in The Independent by Jane Dalton titled “Afghanistan’s first female military pilot granted asylum in US after fleeing Taliban death threats,” is crude propaganda, yet very effective nevertheless. This is a great way to distract insouciant liberals from what Americans are more likely to do in their dealings with Afghans, which is to murder them, and then urinate over their dead bodies. What the mass media doesn’t like to talk about is how the rise of the Taliban is a direct result of Washington’s support for the mujahideen in their insurgency against the secular Afghan communist government in the 1980s. Washington is furious with the International Criminal Court over considering prosecution of American officials for war crimes in Afghanistan, and has even threatened to arrest ICC judges in retaliation. Unbeknownst to these judges, Americans are God’s chosen people. Consequently, they are incapable of war crimes.

Samantha Power is a particularly pious priest in the Church of Humanitarian Interventionism. Power was a staunch advocate of military intervention in Libya, and used her influence to cover up the crimes of the US-Saudi genocidal assault on Yemen. She defended Israel’s brutal attack on Gaza in the summer of 2014, and yet was extremely critical of the “annexation of Crimea.” That the reunification of Crimea and Russia was in fact a legitimate humanitarian intervention is an irony that was undoubtedly lost on her. In a 2016 showdown with Vitaly Churkin at the UN Power accused Russia, Syria, and Iran of slaughtering civilians in Aleppo, when they were liberating the city from jihadists backed by Washington and her vassals. Power also spoke of the liberation of Aleppo as if the jihadists were Jews bravely defending themselves in the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising and the Syrian and Russian troops were fascists perpetrating brutal acts of collective punishment. Following this deranged rant, Churkin said, “The speech by the US representative is particularly strange to me; she gave her speech as if she was Mother Teresa herself. Please, remember which country you represent. Please, remember the track record of your country.”

The NATO-backed putsch in Kiev, supported wholeheartedly by the Obama administration, resulted in an unconstitutional seizure of power by the heirs of the Organization of Ukrainian Nationalists, as well as a genocidal war waged against the ethnic Russians of the Donbass who have steadfastly refused to recognize the Banderite regime. In pitting neo-Nazis against neo-partisans, the restoration of Ukrainian nationalism has resurrected the demons of the past, as the bodies of slain Novorossiyan fighters are mingled with the bones of their heroic grandfathers.

Despite blathering on about the Nazis for decades, liberals were fully complicit in bringing this odious regime to power, as they were easily hoodwinked into thinking that the coup was a grassroots democratic uprising, and that the armed formations battling the Ukrainian military in the Donbass were divisions from the Russian Armed Forces, when they are overwhelmingly comprised of locals from Donetsk and Lugansk.

Moreover, as the Western elites impose multiculturalism and identity politics at home, they are simultaneously fomenting the rise of neo-Nazism in Eastern Europe. This underscores the moral bankruptcy, duplicity, and schizophrenia of the liberal class and has trapped Europeans in an intellectual paralysis where they are being offered a choice between neo-Nazism or multiculturalism, both of which benefit the oligarchy. The Maidan coup, executed by pogromists, neo-Nazis, and Banderites has legitimized unconstitutional seizures of power and inspired those who would like to carry out a putsch of their own in Germany.

A Hitler on The Moskva River?

As Putin has noted, following the collapse of the USSR Washington and NATO have pursued a policy of unilateralism. These wars have not only been carried out in flagrant violation of the UN Charter that condemns wars of aggression, but have also contributed to the degradation of the rule of law within the West itself. Western stenographers like to complain about terrorism, but terrorists filled the vacuum following the destruction of Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya and a large swath of jihadist-occupied Syria – “humanitarian interventions” – where liberal complicity is undeniable and irrefutable.

The Church of Humanitarian Interventionism is rooted in the myth that the invasion of Normandy brought about the defeat of fascism. While this is not to denigrate the contributions made by resistance groups in Western Europe or those who lost their lives on the beaches of Normandy, the fact is that the defeat of fascism was achieved by the Red Army and allied partisans who bore the brunt of the best German troops, together with the courage of the Russian people who suffered the loss of twenty-seven million of their countrymen. This much vaunted invasion was launched on June 6, 1944, and only after it was clear that the Nazis were going to lose the war.

The descent of liberals into a morass of madness and bestiality is intertwined with a gross naivete regarding the true intentions of publications such as The New York Times, The New Yorker, and The Guardian which are leading their readers around like so many poodles. Sadly, most of these creatures will go to their graves never understanding the treachery of these periodicals that they have given their very souls to. Liberals have also decided that it is better to spend trillions of dollars on illegal wars of aggression while their sons and daughters have inadequate health insurance and wallow in dead-end jobs working for the minimum wage.

In a spectacular display of Russophobia and Apocalypticism, Nikki Haley, who could easily work for either party and not know the difference, recently wrote on her Twitter page that “Lying, cheating, and rogue behavior have become the new norm of the Russian culture.” Washington’s decision to make Putin their favorite new bogeyman undoubtedly helps justify the obscene budget of the military industrial complex. Let’s pray that the bells of humanitarian intervention don’t ring out in strident cacophony over the Kremlin, which would assuredly take us to a place from which there is no dawning, and the evanescing of the sun of mankind forever.
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David Penner’s articles on politics and health care have appeared in Dissident Voice, CounterPunch, Russia Insider and KevinMD. Also a photographer and native New Yorker, he is the author of three books: Faces of The New Economy, Faces of Manhattan Island, and Manhattan Pairs. He can be reached at 321davidadam@gmail.com.

Pentagon Big Lies About Civilian Casualties in Iraq and Syria

By Stephen Lendman
Source

Nothing Pentagon reports say about civilian and other casualties in US war theaters is credible. 

Big Lies substitute for hard truths, suppressed by Western media, complicit by supporting what demands condemnation.

Pentagon operations comprise about 95% of so-called “coalition” terror-bombings in Iraq, Syria, Afghanistan, and elsewhere, Britain and France responsible for most of the rest, partnering in US high crimes.

On December 30, the Pentagon lied, claiming it’s been combating ISIS in Iraq and Syria along with its partners since 2014 – suppressing Washington’s responsibility for creating and supporting its scourge, along with al-Qaeda, its al-Nusra offshoot, and likeminded jihadists, using them as proxy forces.

The Pentagon lied saying “nearly 8 million Iraqis and Syrians (were) liberat(ed) from ISIS’s brutal rule” – perhaps from their lives, no other way.

It lied claiming “(w)e continue to employ thorough and deliberate targeting and strike processes to minimize the impact of our operations on civilian populations and infrastructure.”

Fact: The US, NATO, Israel, Turkey, the Saudis, UAE, and their partners deliberately target and massacre civilians. Israel openly considers them legitimate targets, including young children, infants, the elderly and infirm.

The US and its imperial allies wage war without mercy, flagrantly breaching international, constitutional and US statute laws.

According to Gideon Polya’s global body count on “avoidable deaths, deaths that should not have happened, excess mortality, and avoidable mortality,” US-led Western states (NATO) and its partners are responsible for “over 30 million Muslim deaths from violence or deprivation (including starvation and untreated diseases) in (their) War (OF) Terror – aka” Pentagon-led war on Muslims in the Middle East, Central Asia, North Africa and elsewhere, adding:

“Fundamentalist jihadi non-state terrorists have been a major asset of US imperialism. (E)very jihadi atrocity has been used an as excuse to support further massive violence against Muslims by the US and its anti-Arab, anti-Semitic, and Islamophobic allies.” 

“Jihadi non-state terrorists were (and continue to be) backed by the US to overthrow secular rule” in one country after another – smashing them, massacring their people, civilians comprising the vast majority of casualties.

What’s going on since US-initiated Security Council genocidal sanctions on Iraq (August 1990 – May 2003) and 1991 Gulf War followed by endless aggression still ongoing are some of history’s greatest crimes without punishment for responsible parties, Washington guilty most of all. 

Its planned, orchestrated, and implemented horrors continue with no end of them in prospect. When Soviet Russia dissolved in December 1991, Muslims became the convenient US enemy of choice – to unjustifiably justify endless wars of aggression against invented enemies.

No real ones exist, not then or now. The Pentagon’s latest civilian casualty count in Iraq and Syria alone is an affront to the millions who’ve perished from US imperial wars of aggression for over generation since begun by Bush I, continued by the Clintons, Bush II and Cheney, Obama, and now Trump.

The official Pentagon body count from Operation Inherent Resolve in Iraq and Syria, pretending to be combating the scourge of ISIS the US supports is 1,139 civilians “unintentionally” killed by the US and its imperial partners – a colossal Big Lie.

The rape and destruction of Mosul, Iraq (October 2016 – July 2017) and Raqqa, Syria (June – October 2017) turning both cities to rubble, were responsible for tens of thousands of civilians massacred in each city.

Since the Gulf War and over a dozen years of genocidal sanctions on Iraq, millions of its civilians perished – 5,000 children under age-5 monthly from sanctions-caused starvation and untreated diseases.

Millions more perished in Afghanistan from over 17 years of US aggression, countless numbers more in Libya, Syria, Yemen, Somalia, and elsewhere, the body count mounting exponentially daily.

For over a generation, under five US regimes, Washington has been waging genocidal wars against Muslim countries – no end of them in prospect as far ahead as anyone dare imagine, forever wars that won’t end in our lifetime.

Operation Inherent Resolve and all other US wars of aggression are the highest of high crimes of war, against humanity and genocide, accountability not forthcoming.

US and Israel Formally Quit UNESCO

By Stephen Lendman
Source

The Trump and Netanyahu regimes announced their intention to leave the UN’s educational, scientific and cultural organization in 2017. 

Earlier, the State Department said “(t)his decision…reflects US concerns (about its alleged) anti-Israel bias.” The Netanyahu regime used the same pretext to pullout.

The organization fosters “building peace in the minds of men and women” – notions Washington and Israel reject.

It “works to create the conditions for dialogue among civilizations, cultures and peoples, based upon respect for commonly shared values.”

Through dialogue it hopes the “world can achieve global visions of sustainable development encompassing observance of human rights, mutual respect and the alleviation of poverty, all of which are at the heart of UNESCO’S mission and activities.”\

Ahead of her departure as US UN envoy, Nikki Haley embarrassed herself a final time, tweeting: “UNESCO is among the most corrupt and politically biased UN agencies. Today the US withdrawal from this cesspool became official.”

She gone and won’t be missed. Good riddance to bad rubbish, an expression I remember from my boyhood and adolescent days.

In mid-December, Haley turned truth on its head, claiming the US “demonstrated time and again our commitment to peace in the Middle East” – ignoring endless US wars of aggression in multiple theaters, an imperial agenda she wholeheartedly endorses.

She also lied saying “(w)e…offer our hand in friendship to the Palestinian people.” The Trump regime and its predecessors long ago abandoned them, one-sidedly supporting Israel, contemptuous of Palestinian rights.

The agendas of UNESCO v. the US and Israel are polar opposite. The organization should have expelled both countries and their imperial allies long ago. They have no place in an organization supporting world peace.

They partner in endless wars of aggression against nations threatening no one. UNESCO’s message for the new year said the following: 

“Our wishes for 2019? Just one. One word. One hope. One goal. PEACE 🕊☮#HappyNewYear to everyone!!

It’s what the world needs now to prevent US-led warlords from destroying it. Withdrawal is a symbolic blow to world peace, a notion the US, NATO, and Israel abhor.

Anti-Israeli bias is all about truth-telling on its apartheid ruthlessness, its wars against Gazans and regional nations, its contempt for rule of law principles and democratic values.

The US operates the same way on a global scale. Washington and Israel stopped funding UNESCO in 2011.

The same year it granted Palestinians full membership in the organization. Israel called the move a “tragedy.”

Earlier, US and Israeli pressure to block UNESCO’s pro-Palestinian resolutions failed – notably its aim to safeguard “the cultural heritage of Palestine and the distinctive character of East Jerusalem,” calling Israel’s control of the city “illegal,” along with recognizing Hebron’s Old City as a Palestinian World Heritage Site.”

Commenting earlier on the Trump regime’s announced pullout, UNESCO director-general Irina Bokova said “(a)t the time when the fight against violent extremism calls for renewed investment in education, in dialogue among cultures to prevent hatred, it is deeply regrettable that the United States should withdraw from the United Nations agency leading these issues.”

“At the time when conflicts continue to tear apart societies across the world, it is deeply regrettable for the United States to withdraw from the United Nations agency promoting education for peace and protecting culture under attack.”

Bokova failed to explain Washington’s responsibility for creating violent extremism, along with stoking and perpetuating conflicts worldwide.

Ahead of his own withdrawal announcement, Netanyahu praised Trump’s deplorable action, calling it “a brave and moral decision,” adding “UNESCO has become a theater of the absurd. Instead of preserving history, it distorts it” – typical Netanyahu bald-faced lies.

The US is the world’s leading state sponsor of terrorism, Israel a junior partner in its endless war on humanity.

Truth-telling about their destructive agendas is called “bias.” Pile it on, lots more of the same needed in the new year and others to come.

US/Israeli New Year’s Resolution on Iran

By Stephen Lendman
Source

US/Israeli Iran bashing has been ongoing for nearly 40 years, regime change the objective of both countries.

Long-planned US naked aggression on the Islamic Republic may be coming if its political, economic, financial, and propaganda war fails to achieve its objective.

A year ago ahead of Trump’s inauguration, a joint House/Senate Resolution 10: Authorization of Use of Force Against Iran Resolution was introduced.

Though not adopted, it called for “us(ing) the Armed Forces of the United States as the President determines necessary and appropriate in order to achieve the goal of preventing Iran from obtaining nuclear weapons” – knowing the Islamic Republic’s legitimate nuclear program has no military component.

Time and again, its leadership called for eliminating these weapons. Nothing suggests they intend developing them, nor does any evidence indicate Iran threatens Israel, the US, or any other countries. 

It’s the region’s leading proponent of peace and stability, its agenda polar opposite how the US, NATO, Israel, and their imperial partners operate.

The issue about Iran is its sovereign independence, its refusal to subordinate its sovereignty to US interests, the way all countries everywhere should operate.

US sanctions and other actions against the Islamic Republic are flagrantly illegal. Its claims about its regional policies are Big Lies.

A Trump regime State Department report on Iran vilified the country with malicious disinformation.

It lied claiming the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) “regularly threatens freedom of navigation in the Persian Gulf while its Aerospace Force directs the country’s ballistic missile program in defiance of Security Council resolutions.”

It lied saying Tehran supports regional terrorist groups, adding “(s)ince 1979, Iran has made it a policy of state to actively direct, facilitate, and carry out terrorist activity globally” – a US, NATO, Israeli specialty, polar opposite how the Islamic Republic operates.

It lied claiming “Iran’s development of ballistic missiles…pose a critical threat to regional security.” The Islamic Republic’s military and legitimate weapons are solely for defense.

Iran hasn’t attacked another country in centuries. It threatens none now. The US, NATO, Israel, and their imperial partners threaten everyone everywhere.

A further litany of Big Lies followed, how the US operates ahead of and while pursuing regime change actions against targeted countries, Iran a prime one.

That’s what US imperialism is all about, a diabolical plot for global hegemony by whatever it takes to achieve its aims, endless wars its favored strategy.

Will Iran be targeted in the new year? Will Trump regime hardliners go this far to replace its legitimate government with pro-Western puppet rule?

On Tuesday, Mike Pompeo and Benjamin Netanyahu met face-to-face. They vowed to continue jointly cooperating on countering Syria and nonexistent Iranian “aggression” – whether US forces stay or leave the Syrian Arab Republic.

Commenting for the first time on Trump’s troop withdrawal announcement, Pompeo said it “in no way changes anything that this administration is working on alongside Israel,” adding:

“The counter-ISIS campaign (sic) continues, our efforts to counter Iranian aggression (sic) continue, and our commitment to Middle East stability (sic) and the protection of Israel continues in the same way it did before that decision was made.”

Netanyahu said that “(w)e’re going to (continue) our intense (regional) cooperation” in countering Syria and Iran,” turning truth on its head claiming Israeli actions are for “self-defense” – ignoring that the US and Israel have no enemies in the Middle East or anywhere else, just invented ones to unjustifiably justify waging forever wars.

Deputy State Department spokesman Robert Palladino lied, saying Pompeo and Netanyahu “discussed the unacceptable threat that regional aggression and provocation by Iran and its agents (sic) poses to Israeli and regional security.”

When repeated endlessly, Big Lies take on a life of their own, Iran unjustifiably assaulted by them since its 1979 revolution.

Relentless US-led hostility toward the country failed to achieve its objectives? Is war on the Islamic Republic likely in the new year?

For sure, US/Israeli hostility toward Iran will continue intensively, perhaps escalate beyond what’s now ongoing.

It’s unknown how far Trump and Netanyahu will go. War remains an ominous possibility – risking Russian involvement if launched, heightening the chance for East/West confrontation beyond what’s happened so far.

Previous articles discussed the ominous possibility of US launched global war with nuclear weapons, hardliners in Washington thinking they can win.

US war plans were prepared long ago and updated against all its adversaries, notably Russia, China and Iran. 

The sole purpose of NATO is to pursue Washington’s imperial objectives, including its endless wars, wanting ruling authorities in all sovereign independent countries eliminated.

That’s where things are heading because militarist hardliners run Washington’s geopolitical agenda.

US presidents are frontmen for their policies. Their aim to colonize and control planet earth may destroy it. Their drive for global hegemony should scare everyone.

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