جعجع ديماغوجيا أم سفسطائية أم بروباغندا؟

ناصر قنديل

حاول الدكتور سمير جعجع مساجلة دعوة الأمين العام لحزب الله السيد حسن نصرالله، استباقاً لمطالبته بتلقفها، والدعوة قائمة على الفصل بين الخلافات السياسية وبين الملفات الاقتصادية، وتنطلق من أن حجم وعمق الأزمة ببعديها المالي والاقتصادي يفرضان على الجميع التبصر في أن لا شيء سيبقى للخلاف عليه وحوله إذا وقع الانهيار الذي يحذّر منه الجميع. وهي دعوة تلامس ما يتمناه كل لبناني في سره لمستوى تفكير القادة ولدرجة تحمّلهم للمسؤولية، وقد بلورها السيد نصرالله بالدعوة لنوع من لجنة أو اجتماعات تشترك فيها الكتل النيابية مع الحكومة لبلورة الحلول ومناقشتها، والسير بما يتفق عليه انطلاقاً من حجم الخطر من جهة، وترجمة لدرجة الشعور بالمسؤولية من جهة موازية، ولعله من المفيد التذكير أن كلام السيد نصرالله لم يأتِ سجالياً، لا مع القوات ولا مع سواها.

بدأ جعجع تعليقه بوصف دعوة السيد بمحاولة التهرّب من المسؤولية، ثم دخل معها في مشروع سجاليّ، مشترطاً على حزب الله القيام بثلاثة، رفع الغطاء عن حلفائه في فساد الكهرباء، ووقف تدخله في ملفات عربيّة ترتب عليها انكفاء عرب الخليج عن دعم لبنان، ووضع سلاح المقاومة بعهدة الدولة لأن بقاءه خارجها أفقد الدولة المصداقيّة، وبالتالي الدعم الدولي. وحسناً فعل جعجع بأنه قال ما قال، وهو كلام يردّده كل خصوم المقاومة، في السرّ والعلن، ولو بالمفرق وجاء يعرضه جعجعج كبضاعة بالجملة، متهجماً بالاتهام بالتهرّب من المسؤولية على الحزب الذي لم يُعرَف عنه إلا التفوّق بالتصدي لكل تحدي بأعلى درجات المسؤولية.

في مدارس السجال والمنطق، تحضر لدى قراءة جعجع مدرسة الديماغوجيا والقائمة على تجميع تلفيقي لذرائع يمكن أن تبدو حججاً منطقية لتسويق موقف أو فكرة أو توجيه اتهام. وهي مدرسة الغوغائيّة الفكرية والمنطق الكلامي، أي الترتيب التسلسلي للكلمات وتنميق عرضها بما يوحي بتماسك الفكر الواقف خلفها. وهناك البروباغندا، وهي المدرسة الدعائيّة القائمة على الترويج الدعائي لفكرة يراد زرعها في عقول الناس من خلال توجيه أحادي لمنهج مقاربة الموضوع بعزله عن سياقه، ويرمي في طريق التلقي مجموعة معطيات مموّهة، وغامضة غير مثبتة، اعتماداً على خلق الانطباع بدلاً من الإقناع. والمدرسة الثالثة هي السفسطائية التي تمثل تفوّقاً منطقياً ومنهجياً، برفض القبول بالمسلّمات والبديهيات والتفوق في تفكيكها وصولاً لهزيمة المنطق الآخر، وربما تكون السفسطائيّة كمدرسة رافقت حكم الشعب وظهور ممثليه في أثينا بعد سقوط الأوليغارشيا، وحكم أمراء الحرب وأثريائها، موضوع تقليد لدى الكثير من الانتهازيين الذي يرغبون بالتشبّه بثوريّة السفسطائيين.

ما قاله جعجع سهّل النقاش والتفنيد إذا تحرّرنا من الانطباع، وكشفنا سطحية المنطق العاجز عن الإقناع. فأي غطاء يقدّم السيد نصرالله للفساد في قطاع الكهرباء. وهل تقدّم نواب القوات الواثقون مما بين أيديهم من توجيه الاتهام لمن يسمّيهم جعجع بحلفاء السيد نصرالله، ومعهم كما ظهر كلام الحليفين في قوى الرابع عشر من آذار، بطلب تشكيل لجنة تحقيق برلمانية في ملف الكهرباء من ألف إلى يائه، منذ العام 1990، وليرفضها نواب كتلة الوفاء للمقاومة ليمكن اتهامهم بتوفير التغطية للفساد؟ وما أسهل الاختبار لو اراد جعجع وحزبه تحمل المسؤولية بدلاً من التهرّب منها! أما الحديث عن العرب الذين انكفأوا عن لبنان بسبب مواقف حزب الله، فهل قول جعجع إنهم انكفأوا يجعل ذلك حقيقة؟ وهل حجز رئيس حكومة لبنان حليف جعجع نظرياً، في فندق الريتز بالسعودية وإملاء الاستقالة عليه، كان انكفاءً، أم أن حلفاء جعجع من العرب هم شركاء في مواجهة تقودها واشنطن لحساب “إسرائيل”، وخطة المواجهة معلنة وقد راهنت على إفقار لبنان للضغط على المقاومة وسلاحها، كما يفعل جعجع، وصولاً للقول إن المال المطلوب ثمنه السلاح ولاحقاً ترسيم النفط وليلتحق باللاحق فرض مشروع التوطين؟ ونأتي لمصداقية الدولة، فهل ورد في مؤتمر سيدر حديث عن مصداقية الدولة في الإصلاح أم في السلاح، وهل تقارير شركات التصنيف العالمية تتحدث عن مصداقية الالتزام بالشروط والمعايير الشفافة للإنفاق، أم مصداقية الالتزام بالشروط الإسرائيلية للبنان الضعيف. ويعلم الدكتور جعجع أن هناك جهة واحدة هي واشنطن تربط هذه بتلك وتفعل ذلك لحساب “إسرائيل”، ويردد جعجع وراءها الربط، فهل سأل نفسه لحساب مَن يفعل؟

ثمة طريقان لمواجهة الأزمة، طريق تعرضه واشنطن علينا وتحدّث عنها كل من جيفري فيلتمان وديفيد شنك

ر مطولاً، وأسمياها طريق الازدهار الممكن، ومدخلها ما عرضه جعجع على السيد نصرالله، أي تعرية لبنان من مصادر القوة والانضواء تحت الوصاية الأميركية، وتلك قمة التهرّب من المسؤولية. وطريق أخرى وطنية لبنانية تقوم على الإقرار بالاختلاف بين اللبنانيين على أشياء كثيرة، والسعي للعمل معاً فوق الخلاف لخطة إنقاذ تعتمد على توظيف القدرات اللبنانية ووضع الخطط الإصلاحية، والتواصل مع الخارج للفصل بين خلافاته السياسية مع لبنان وبين تعاطيه مع أزمته الاقتصادية، بأن يبدأ اللبنانيون بفعل ذلك. وهذا هو عين تحمّل المسؤوليّة.

بعض البروباغندا، وبعض الديماغوجيا، لا يجعلان صاحبهما سفسطائياً، ولو بذل جهداً، فقد سقطت محاولته بكلمة تكرّرت كثيراً في ردّه هي المصداقية.

Countering Syria’s Liberating Struggle

By Stephen Lendman

Source

Whenever Syrian forces make significant advances in liberating areas controlled by US supported jihadists, establishment media counterattack with state-approved propaganda.

Reports read like US/Western press releases, sticking to the official narrative, hard truths about years of US aggression ignored, Syria/Russia bashing featured as more cities, towns, and villages are liberated from the scourge of US-supported jihadists.

Hollywood is involved, studio bosses colluding in glorifying US wars and demonizing its enemies.

In propaganda films, Washington has final say on content, wanting its agenda promoted.

History is reinvented, villains portrayed as heroes. Supporting America’s imperial agenda overrides truth-telling.

At Hollywood’s 89th Academy Awards, The White Helmets propaganda film was honored as best documentary short – al-Qaeda-connected terrorists portrayed as heroic.

On Sunday at the 92nd Academy Awards, will best documentary nominee For Sama be awarded an Oscar in support of the US war machine.

Win or lose it won by promotion surrounding its nomination.\

A promo for the film calls it “(a)n intimate and epic journey into the female experience of war, a love letter from a young mother to her daughter…while cataclysmic war rises around her…captur(ing) stories of loss…and survival.”

Ignored are years of US aggression, Obama/Trump regimes’ support for ISIS and other jihadists, Pentagon terror-bombing massacring tens of thousands, US responsibility for the gravest refugee crisis since WW II, and raging forever war, aiming to transform Syria into a US vassal state.

British Independent Film Awards named For Sama the year’s best documentary. So did the Cannes Film Festival. Is Hollywood next?

For movie moguls, annual Academy awards are all about  film promotion for profits, unrelated to the industry’s best.

When called on by the Pentagon and/or CIA, Hollywood produces films that portray hostile US actions as liberating struggles and democracy promotion — victims falsely blamed for high crimes committed against them.

Establishment media do most pro-war heavy lifting, featuring all propaganda all the time about Washington’s imperial agenda, supporting what demands condemnation.

Ahead of Sunday’s Academy Awards spectacle, the NYT featured a propaganda op-ed by Waad al-Kateab, For Sama’s co-director.

She falsely portrayed liberating efforts by Syrian and Russian forces as high crimes — committed by the US and its jihadist proxies left unexplained.

Focusing on the ongoing Idlib province campaign, she claimed “the world…abandoned the Syrian people.”

It’s clearly true about the Western world and their regional imperial allies.

Falsely calling Idlib a “sanctuary” for millions of Syrians, she ignored their captivity as human shields by US/Turkish supported jihadists.

She said nothing about scores of daily attacks by their fighters against government forces and residential areas.

She falsely called al-Qaeda-connected White Helmets “civil defense” workers.

She lied accusing Syrian and Russian forces of massacres, ignoring jihadists’ responsibility for what’s gone on throughout the war — along with Pentagon-led terror-bombing of cities, towns, villages, and vital infrastructure.

Kateab’s propaganda film is supported by US officials, Hollywood, and establishment media, notably the NYT.

Instead of truth-telling about US aggression, it features anti-Syria/anti-Russia propaganda.

Will Hollywood dishonor itself again like countless times before by honoring For Sama propaganda as best documentary this year?

The film isn’t worth the celluloid it’s produced on for suppressing what’s most important to explain.

Resistance report: New ceasefire stops Syrian Army offensive while Washington-Tehran row grows stranger by the day

August 07, 2019

Resistance report: New ceasefire stops Syrian Army offensive while Washington-Tehran row grows stranger by the day

by Aram Mizraei for The Saker Blog

This week saw the Syrian Army re-commit to the previously undertaken Northwestern Syria offensive as they attacked and liberated several villages after a few weeks of relative calm across the battlefield. While terrorists still roam freely across Idlib and Hama, this offensive could be pivotal to the war effort as the aim would be to eliminate the jihadist presence in Latakia and Hama. Sputnik News Agency, citing a Syrian Arab Army source reported that Syrian Army forces are working to control the strategic hills near Kabani (Latakia) before they launch a large-scale attack.

[Excerpts from the Sputnik report] “Work is being done to control a range of strategic hills in the area and on the axes of the Zuwayqat Mountain and Height 1154,” the Syrian Army source said, adding that taking control of these sites will pave the way for the military to capture Kabani.

Kabani, situated at a high mountain top has been a constant thorn in the side of the Syrian Army and its allies as they have for years tried and failed every time to capture this town. Due to Kabani’s high elevation, the Syrian Arab Army has struggled to break through the jihadist defences, despite their constant airstrikes on the town.

[Update] Unfortunately, on Friday, the Syrian Army announced once more that the Syrian Army will agree on a ceasefire in Idlib if the militants retreat from the 20-km-long demilitarized zone in northwestern Syria. According to a military source near the front-lines, the Syrian Army is willing to halt their hostilities if the militants agree to fulfil their obligations as part of the September 17, 2018 ceasefire agreement. I am willing to bet my life that they wont, and that once more Damascus’ and Moscow’s generosity will be taken advantage of. The source said that the Syrian Army is giving the militants one last chance to salvage the September 17 deal; if they do not withdraw from the area, the military will resume their operations.

Moreover, Moscow has given their Turkish partners 24 hours to withdraw their allied militants from the demilitarized zone in northwestern Syria or else the Syrian Army will resume their offensive. Unsurprisingly, the Tahrir Al-Sham terrorist outfit has refused to do so, proving once more that any kind of negotiation with these base animals is useless.

Elsewhere, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo was allegedly invited by Iranian Press TV to be interviewed, an offer that Pompeo accepted, stating that he would “happily go to Tehran and willingly appear on Iranian television to explain US reasoning behind its sanctions against the Islamic Republic.”

His response was met positively by several important people in Iran. Member of Parliament Ali Motahari welcomed Pompeo’s offer saying that “In my opinion, this is a good opportunity, but the interview shouldn’t be one-sided in which Pompeo [only] speaks. The interviewer must bring up issues skillfully in a way that would [prove] US [lack] of logic,”said Motahari in an interview with a local media.

Even though I personally don’t believe this would happen, one would wonder as to why Pompeo would agree to such an interview. The obvious reason for me and many others would be to spread propaganda in a desperate attempt to reach out to the ones that suffer the most from the sanctions against Iran. Pompeo also likened a trip to Tehran to how Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif communicates with the American public during his trips to the United Nations in New York. He went on to claim that Zarif is “no more in charge of what’s going on in Iran than a man in the moon. At the end of the day, this is driven by the ayatollah. He will be the ultimate decision-maker here.”

Having said this, only a week later Pompeo tweeted that Mohammad Javad Zarif was now the target of fresh US sanctions, since Zarif apparently is a “chief apologist” for the Islamic Republic, and is “just as complicit in the regime’s outlaw behaviour as the rest of @khamenei_ir’s mafia”. One of the most dangerous potential conflicts in this world is being “debated” on Twitter by the chief men responsible, as Zarif and Pompeo frequently trade blows on the social media platform. One can’t help but think that it was only bound to happen as the mutually hateful Washington-Tehran relationship continues to reach new heights.

‘This Yellow Vest carnage’ more ‘French exceptionalism’

 

July 23, 2019

by Ramin Mazaheri for the Saker Blog (cross-posted with PressTV by permission)

‘This Yellow Vest carnage’ more ‘French exceptionalism’

(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 “I’ll Ruin Everything You Are: Ending Western Propaganda on Red China.”)

At a recent demonstration against the recently fired, third-ranking French civil servant (the president of parliament), who had been caught enjoying jumbo lobster and 1,000-euro bottles of wine with his friends on the taxpayer’s centime, I chatted with a former political prisoner.

It may surprise some that he was a Westerner. The West is, of course, exceptional: everyone else has political prisoners, but there isn’t a single one in the free, free West.

He had just spent four months in prison for protesting with the Yellow Vests. In a story which appears trite but which I believed – given the fact that testimony by police cannot be questioned in France’s judicial system – he said that it was the protester next to him who had thrown something at the cops and not him. There was no falsehood in the intense bitterness with which he said, “Four months in prison – I wish that I actually had thrown it!”

He showed me the many scars and permanent knots on his wrists and forearms – defensive wounds caused by protecting himself from fiercely-armed, well-protected and ruthless riot police. I praised his sacrifice for the common good, but I did not tell him that this was exceptional: in the past eight months I had heard many similar stories. Just last weekend I saw children getting tear gassed, and yet another woman shot in the eye with a rubber bullet.

This is carnage, pure and simple, and it happens all around France every Saturday starting around 11 am.

The biggest complaint of the Yellow Vests these days may not be against the French model of government, but towards a Western Mainstream Media which acts as if such carnage doesn’t exist.

If the world believed that the French system of governance was exceptional, then the repression of the Yellow Vest movement should forever silence that false claim. It has been eight months: their media system obviously cannot report on domestic political repression, and their political system can obviously perpetuate domestic repression with an impunity unparalleled in the world. In no other country has such regular, political repression occurred this century.

This ability to inflict such record-breaking repression while talking passionately about liberté – and being believed at home and abroad! – is the true “French exceptionalism”, and it is nothing to boast about or emulate.

Western propaganda has shut down all criticism of French repression in favor of hysterical and one-sided coverage of the protests in Hong Kong. Another widespread belief among Westerners is that they are exceptional in that their systems don’t permit the creation of “propaganda”, whereas that is the only thing the journalists of most other nations can do, especially nations like Russia, Iran, Syria, etc.

One thing about exceptionalists is their certainty of its permanence: it seems that once one is exceptional, one can never stop being exceptional, no matter how immorally one acts. Exceptionalism, once bestowed by God, can never be subject to a Day of Judgment, apparently. It’s a, uh, “unique” view….

Undoubtedly, the necessarily corollary to exceptionalism’s assertion that “We are different” is rarely stated but extremely important in order to understand the exceptionalist’s mindset, and it is: “while all the rest of you idiots are all the same”.

Those in the developing world are told that there is an enormous difference between Belgians and the English, for example. Even though the former is merely a peninsula of the latter, what a mighty chasm separates the Danes and the Germans! Yet in France all Blacks are just that – Blacks – even though they hail from parts as varied as West Africa, Madagascar and the Caribbean. In the US all Latinos – whether from the southernmost tip of Tierra del Fuego or Boston – are painted with the same brush. Of course, in both countries Muslims are certainly all “Arabs”. This total nonsense illustrates an obsessive self-esteem which necessarily strains cooperation, diplomacy and true tolerance.

A difference between US and French claims for their own exceptionalism is that the US believes it is exceptional lock, stock and barrel, yet the French are more likely to claim their “cultural exceptionalism”.

It takes a bit of experience here to figure that out, but what they mean is that “White French culture” is exceptional: any influences from the nearby Muslim world, or anything their neo-imperial subjects might bring, or even the neighbouring Anglo-Saxon world – all are second-rate and somehow corruptive of an exceptionally wonderful culture which must never change.

What especially galls nations like Iran and many, many others regarding French exceptionalism are two things:

France claims to especially honor human rights… and yet how do we explain the the Yellow Vest repression? This was after we were told to believe that their bombs in Libya, their guns in the short-lived Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, and their rapes in the Central African Republic are “humanitarian interventions”. We also were disgusted by the deification of the dangerous magazine Charlie Hebdo, which made millions by publishing Islamophobic pictures but never publish an anti-Jewish one.

It boggles to mind to think of the weight of the cognitive dissonance which France’s political and cultural elite must bear in their minds: they regularly imprison hundreds of protesters in the morning, and then in the afternoon talk about France being a beacon, champion and even the inventor of human rights.

It is simply intolerable to get lessons on human rights from a nation which so clearly violates them; it is intolerable because all nations must converse diplomatically, and yet France believes they can continually disrespects everyone else’s intelligence and get away with it.

Secondly, Iran is a nation which has been under hot and cold war for 40 years, therefore they have been truly living in wartime conditions, forced to have a true state of emergency in the past, and endure vast suffering caused by an illegal, homicidal blockade which aims to provoke either civil war or all-out war. France, however, suffers none of these hardships, and yet are more homicidal by multiple orders of magnitude.

How can Iran have such a very poor image and France such a positive image, given the former’s unjust handicaps and the latter’s lack of restraint, common decency and refusal to cooperate? Part of it is Iranophobic propaganda, and the other part is propaganda which champions the alleged legitimacy of “French exceptionalism”.

However, current anthropological scholarship is finally shedding their West-centric blinders to realise that France is not at all the “birthplace of human rights”: the conception of individual rights in today’s West was yet another resource stolen from the American Indians, namely the Iroquois Confederacy in the northeastern US. This fascinating subject, which academics simply must study,certainly seems logical – where was the conception of individual freedom in France’s long history of an absolute monarchy which was as absolute as anywhere in Europe? They obviously learned it from someone else, namely the Indians they came into contact with. To me, the Iroquois seemed to be about as freedom-loving as your average, ever-roaming Iranian nomad, but the point here is not to make exceptional claims about who invented human rights – the point is: the French did not invent them, as they claim.

It is inherent in countries which assert their exceptionalism – and perhaps in all Western Liberal Democracies – to deny shared authorship of the world’s many fine ideas and concepts, as they endlessly promote individualism and do not prize the communal, collective spirit.

I can report that those incredibly brave Yellow Vests who are still protesting – in the face of all the guaranteed state violence – repeatedly tell me what respect they have for Iran and its modern governmental system. They routinely tell me what shame they have in their own government. Indeed, the Yellow Vests are the new, courageous political vanguard of France. Unlike the French 1%’s support of aristocratic Western Liberal Democracy, Yellow Vests display French values which are in common with those around the world: solidarity, bravery, faith and self-sacrifice.

If the Yellow Vests could ever win political or cultural power they would certainly end the hypocrisy of “French exceptionalism”, which they correctly see as an unwanted yoke which only perpetuates France’s ongoing domestic repression.

The French have a fine saying: “One time does not make a custom.”

However, eight months does. The Yellow Vests obviously cannot be distracted with the false pride of “French exceptionalism” – they are busy defending themselves from the carnage such arrogance inevitably provokes.

The Saker interviews Stephen Karganovic

The Saker

The Saker interviews Stephen Karganovic

June 30, 2019

The Saker: Please introduce yourself and your past and present political activities.

Karganovic: My name is Stephen Karganovic. My background is Serbian, Russian, and Polish. On my father’s side I have been able to trace family roots to the town of Khmelita, Smolensk district. In the first half of the 19th century Yuri Karganovich held the by then probably obsolete office of стольник (stolnik) in the regional town of Iskorosten. Perhaps because of my ethnically ecumenical background, I prefer to identify myself simply as an Orthodox Christian. I am a law school graduate, also with a degree in philosophy. I have never engaged in political activities as such. What interests me are issues with a moral dimension, and if they also happen to impinge upon politics, so be it.

The Saker: You are one of the best “Srebrenica specialists” out there. So, could you please in your own words describe, step by step, what actually took place in Srebrenica from the moment the Bosnian-Muslims raided the Serbian villages around Srebrenica to the moment the grand “genocide” strategic psy-op was launched.

Karganovic: I became interested in what happened in Srebrenica in July of 1995, during the Bosnian war, when in 2001 at the Hague I became involved in the defense of a Bosnian Serb officer accused of war crimes before the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia. I was in America, of course, while the war was going on and knew nothing of Srebrenica at that time. Neither did I have any axe to grind in the controversies that sparked that conflict. I was raised and educated in the United States, had a very vague concept of my ethnic background(s), and neither I nor my family had suffered any detriment at the hands of the other contending parties, so I had no motive to favor one side or disfavor another. As we sifted through the evidence in order to construct a defense, I noticed that the prosecution’s case consisted of broad allegations and was bereft of specific facts to support the grave charges laid against the defendant, which included genocide, an accusation that takes much highly technical evidence to prove. As I witnessed firsthand the unconventional legal procedures of the Hague Tribunal, which is a polite way of saying its complete alienation from the traditions of civilized jurisprudence, I became shocked. There did not seem to be much substance to the charge sheets. The remark once made by a hubristic US judge that “we can convict a ham sandwich,” which sounded flippant to me when I read it many years ago, ultimately received its full embodiment in the operation of the Hague Tribunal, and I had a ring-side seat to watch that professionally unedifying show.

I went on to work in several other defense teams at the Hague in cases that were not related to Srebrenica. But to make the long story short, I quickly realized that Srebrenica was the mainstay of the Hague Tribunal, or ICTY, and that officially confirming the “genocide” and “8,000 men and boys” version of the narrative was its principal mission. I was bothered to see defendants convicted to decades-long imprisonment on the most heinous of charges and flimsiest proof, and a nation tarred with the most serious crime under international law, based on improvised and fabricated “evidence” that would not stand up in any non-political domestic court. So, I began to pay special attention to Srebrenica and to use the resources available to me at the Hague Tribunal to collect all the data I could lay my hands on about what happened there.

In 2008 at the Hague, under the laws of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, I founded a non-government organization “Srebrenica Historical Project,” dedicated to a contextual, multi-disciplinary study of this issue. Our goal is to get to the bottom of what happened, and how and why. Our colleagues, whose research articles you can read on our website, are of diverse ethnic backgrounds and professional profiles. Almost none are Serbian. They have in common a critical approach and a desire to factually deconstruct what the late Prof. Edward Herman aptly called “the greatest triumph of propaganda at the close of the twentieth century.” He was referring to Srebrenica, of course.

Instead of my presenting a possibly subjective account of what happened in Srebrenica, I recommend visiting our website. Our many authors give, I think, persuasive and factual answers to most Srebrenica questions.

The Saker: What has the impact of Srebrenica been on the Serbian people and the Serbian state? Who has benefited most from this?

Karganovic: Srebrenica’s impact has been to bewilder the Serbian people, who are under the firm impression that they are victims, not perpetrators, of genocide. After bewilderment came indignant rejection of the Srebrenica smear. Western governments and the Soros organization have invested huge sums in Serbia into propping up a bevy of phony “NGOs” with the principal task of indoctrinating the public in the Srebrenica genocide guilt complex. Their efforts have been a dismal failure, notwithstanding the country’s demoralized state and the covert support of Serbia’s quisling governments. The goal, of course, is to further morally break down and emasculate the Serbian nation, to lay on them a paralyzing guilt trip and to render them submissive and obedient, apologizing and atoning forever for acts of moral turpitude that, unlike the Germans, they did not commit. So far, that particular “use of Srebrenica,” as Diana Johnstone would put it, has been a resounding flop.

But another, and very lethal, use of Srebrenica has been a huge success. The Srebrenica narrative is the foundation stone and chief rationale of the “right to protect” (R2P) doctrine of cynical, predatory imperialist interventions that have destroyed and devastated a dozen mostly Muslim countries and claimed several million innocent Muslim lives. R2P’s phony rationale is the supposed failure in July of 1995 of Western countries and NATO to act robustly to prevent the “Srebrenica genocide.” Srebrenica as a metaphor for unbridled imperialist aggression has indeed been a slaughterhouse for Muslims, but not in Bosnia in 1995.

The Saker: Can you outline what is currently happening in Serbia? We hear of a possible conflict with the US-backed Kosovo Albanians, of a possible EU and/or NATO membership? What is really taking place?

Karganovic: In response to your question about what is happening in Serbia (I am in America right now) I will quote from an email that I received today from a friend who teaches at a university abroad but is currently on holiday in Serbia: “There are heavy rains and floods here – Belgrade has been flooded twice – with torrents sweeping away cars as if they were mere toys. There is general chaos in the entire country, and everything is falling apart. But the gang in charge are celebrating themselves as saints and saviors, and there seems to be nothing of greater importance to Serbs than to put on the shackles of the European Union!”

That is admittedly a pessimistic assessment, but I believe it to be close to the truth. Slavic nations generally are not politically sophisticated and can easily be fooled and manipulated by savvy conmen. The Ukraine is a notorious example. Serbs are not far behind; they have the political acumen of seven-year-olds. I read somewhere that young Germans nowadays watch Hitler’s histrionics and wonder how their parents and grandparents could have been so simpleminded as to put their faith in that buffoon and accept his leadership. Future generations of Serbs will undoubtedly be reviewing the performance of the loathsome character who is running their country into the ground today and will wonder how their parents and grandparents could possibly have tolerated his obnoxious misrule.

As for the news of conflict with US-backed Albanians in Kosovo, on the part of the quisling regime there is neither the will nor the means to enter into such a confrontation. The regime was installed in order arrange for Serbia’s legal renunciation of Kosovo and its capos are well aware that reneging on that commitment will have for them most unpleasant consequences. As for actually opposing anything, Serbia no longer has an army worthy of the name, hence no means with which to effectively assert or defend its interests. It is at the mercy of foreign imperialists and their bought and blackmailed local agents. NATO membership seems definitely on the horizon because incorporation in today’s Axis is an essential component of the planned Ostfront war, as much today as it was in 1941.

The Saker: What about Montenegro? Has the Empire been successful in breaking off Montenegro from Serbia and is what is happening nowadays with Montenegro similar to what the Empire did in the Ukraine? I hear that an “independent Montenegrin Orthodox Church” is being prepared, is that true? How toxic/important is this development (assuming it is true)?

Karganovic: The only reason that Montenegro is not labeled “Europe’s last dictatorship,” but Byelorussia is, is that unlike Lukashenko its blackmailed dictator Djukanovic is a servile Western lapdog. With many criminal indictments in Italy waiting to be activated against him at the slightest hint of disobedience, for drug, cigarette, and human trafficking, he has no choice but to be one.

The similarities between the “nation-building” procedures in the Ukraine and Montenegro are striking. What this refers to is the artificial insemination of the target population with a phony, completely fabricated identity entirely at odds with their genuine history and culture, all to their detriment and in the service of their geopolitical manipulators’ and enemies’ agenda. We already know the Ukrainian story and need not repeat it here. The Montenegrin story is precisely analogous. Since subservient local chieftains receive memos telling them what they are expected to do, one may safely assume that in one of those memos delivered to Djukanovic he was instructed to initiate the setting up of a non-Serbian Montenegrin identity in order to fragment and undermine Serbian ethnic and cultural space even further. He obeyed.

The result today are regime-sponsored and condoned anti-Serbian excesses that closely compete with those of the Ukrainian looneys and often boggle the imagination. A recent example is an Instagram message by a certain Mirna Nikcevic, a counselor at the Montenegrin embassy in Ankara, where she wrote contemptuously of the crowd of Montenegrin Serbs that gathered around the cathedral of Christ the Savior in Podgorica to protest the regime’s plan to take over the temples of the canonical Orthodox church and hand them over to a schismatic pseudo church it had set up, that she would “cram the assembled cattle [meaning Montenegrins asserting their Serbian heritage – S. K.] into the church and set it on fire.” That most undiplomatic remark was mildly reproved by Djukanovic’s foreign ministry, but it accurately reflects the dementia of his partisans.

An “independent” Montenegrin church, as a fitting complement to the country’s statehood and alleged ethnic specificity, was in fact created a few years ago in a way that even the Ukrainian lunatics, who serve as the model for Djukanovic and his crew, would have difficulty topping. This “church” founded by atheists (which is what former Communist youth leader Djukanovic admittedly is) was set up as an NGO and registered as such in a Montenegrin police station. Recognizing the autocephaly of the Ukrainian pseudo-church was a piece of cake for the corrupt ecumenical patriarch in Constantinople compared to his forthcoming task of legitimizing the Montenegrin sect. He will have to figure out how to do it when he gets the memo from NATO that this is the next thing that is expected of him. (It is true that the ecumenical Patriarch informed Djukanovic a few days ago that Montenegro never had an autocephalous church and never will have one. But the fickleness of the Patriarchate is legendary. With a little pressure here, and some financial inducement there, the latter having worked miracles in the Ukrainian affair, a canonical rationale for a flip flop can surely be found.) Toxic is one word for the phenomenon of using Orthodox church institutions for the self-destruction of Orthodoxy. Ominous is another word for it and, as sheikh Imran Hosein would say, it is a reliable sign of akhir al-zamaan.

The Saker: Who won the Yugoslav civil war, if anybody? Here forget about Slovenia – please focus on Croatia and Bosnia.

Karganovic: The war was won, in a manner of speaking, by the globalist power centers which engineered the dissolution of the former Yugoslavia. They got what they wanted, feeble and dependent statelets run by their hired hands instead of a unified country with weight in world affairs, which at home did not even perform badly. The losers were all the citizens of the former Yugoslavia without exception, not only those who perished in senseless mayhem instigated by foreign agents and executed by domestic fools, but also the miserable survivors who must now live in the resulting neo-liberal hellholes.

The Saker: Are there any Serbs left in the former UN Protected Areas in what is Croatia nowadays and, if yes, how do they live?

Karganovic: Yes, there is a very small number of Serbs left in present-day Croatia, their share in the total population hovering around the 3% mark, drastically down from a quarter of the population before the slaughter in the Nazi-satellite “Independent State of Croatia” during World War II. They are mostly elderly, waiting to die hopefully natural deaths, if permitted by their Croatian fellow citizens.

The Saker: Are there any Serbs left in the Muslim-controlled areas of Bosnia today?

Karganovic: Yes, they are a whopping and largely disenfranchised 5% of the population of that section of the country. For purposes of comparison, in the capital of Sarajevo, where before the outbreak of the hostilities in 1992 there were about 150,000 Serbs, there are now only a few thousand left.

The Saker: How much autonomy does the Republika Srpska have today? Focus on this: are the Serbs in Bosnia safe or at they at risk?

Karganovic: The Republika Srpska, which is the Serb-run entity within Bosnia and Hercegovina under the Dayton Agreement signed to end the war in 1995, is continually struggling to preserve the autonomy guaranteed to it under international law. Above the local authorities, there is a “High Representative” of the “international community” who is really the official in charge in Bosnia and Herzegovina. He has arrogated to himself vast arbitrary powers to interpret laws, set up institutions, and dismiss democratically elected officials he deems unsuitable. It is a replication of the British colonial system. The Srebrenica genocide matter is being used as a pretext to dispute Republika Srpska’s legal and moral right to exist. No one is entirely safe in present-day Bosnia and Hercegovina.

The Saker: How do you see the future of Kosovo in general and of the Serbian minority in Kosovo specifically?

Karganovic: Until the results of NATO aggression in 1999 are annulled Kosovo will have no future, except as a narco and human organ trafficking pseudo state. Albanians are fleeing en masse the utterly incompetent and corrupt terror regime that was installed by NATO occupiers twenty years ago. The land is saturated with the depleted uranium munitions left over from the three-month NATO bombing campaign and is scarcely fit for human habitation. If you go to Kosovo, I would recommend you make your visit brief and bring your own canned food, avoiding contaminated local ingredients. Babies and animals are being born with hideous defects. Few people are aware of this, but Kosovo was targeted with the highest concentration of depleted uranium and other toxic substances during NATO’s 1999 “liberation war.” Being the majority of the population, Albanians are now paying a heavy price for NATO’s generous favors. Meanwhile, since Kosovo is a pot of gold in terms of its mineral and other resources, the chief liberators Wesley Clark and Madeleine Albright have made a financial killing by awarding themselves juicy business opportunities, while the “philanthropist” George Soros has his eye set on the enormously valuable Trepča mining complex. International corporations will get their choice pickings. Meanwhile, Albanians are dying of cancer and desperately moving out. There is a small remnant of Serbs still living in Kosovo which is spiritually and culturally their Holy Land. The future of that scene of ghastly crimes against humanity is in God’s hands.

The Saker: How many Serbs were displaced in total by the war and where do they reside nowadays?

Karganovic: Estimates are not reliable, but about a quarter of a million are thought to have been displaced from Croatia and as many from Kosovo. A further unknown number sought in Serbia safety from the war in Bosnia. We cannot be sure of the numbers, but we do have striking pictures which portray an exodus of biblical proportions.

The Saker: Are the Serbian refugees from Croatia, Bosnia and Kosovo a major factor in Serbian politics? If yes, how, if not, why?

Karganovic: They are not a factor at all. They are not allowed to interfere with the policies pursued by the Western-installed Serbian political elite.

The Saker: Do you think that the US and/or NATO have the stomach to use force against Serbia if the Serbs move to protect the Serbian minority in Kosovo?

Karganovic: It is a moot question because the hypothetical situation envisaged by the question is unlikely to occur.

The Saker: What happened to Bishop Artemie and why did the Serbian Orthodox Church yield to the Empire’s pressure and took away his diocese of Kosovo? How is he now and how can the readers find out more about him?

Karganovic: In essence, the American ambassador in Belgrade told the Serbian Patriarch that Bishop Artemie was an obstacle to “normalization” in Kosovo and that it was highly desirable for him to be removed. Within four days, Bishop Artemie was dismissed on trumped-up financial malfeasance charges which after a decade have not been proved in a court of law. His ouster seems to have been a blessing in disguise. He is now leading a thriving “diocese in exile,” where he is joined by most of his Kosovo clergy and monastics. Catacomb parishes, as he aptly calls them, of the exiled diocese are springing up all over Serbia and countries with a Serbian diaspora. The diocese that was contemptuously cast away by the servile, ecumenist leadership of the Serbian Church has now become its salt, providing much needed spiritual nourishment to Orthodox believers. It is living proof of God’s ability to confound the adversary’s most carefully laid plans and to transform them for the good.

The Saker: What should Russia do to help Serbia? What is, in your opinion, the “solution” to the Serbian drama in Croatia, Bosnia and Kosovo?

Karganovic: That is an overtly political question and as I said, I don’t do politics. I will just say that what Russia can and should do is to never abandon Serbia. That will at the same time be the solution to the drama that you mention. But none of that will be purely the work of human hands.

 

Our Reality Can Beat Up Your Reality. Spreading False News Stories on Iran

Taxpayer-Funded Propaganda for Trolls, by Trolls

Global Research, June 17, 2019

Twitter has declared victory over disinformation, deplatforming thousands of pro-Iranian Twitter accounts this week to coincide with US Secretary of State “Rapture Mike” Pompeo’s evidence-free declaration that Iran had attacked two oil tankers in the Gulf of Oman. But the mass deletion is merely an effort to distract from the implosion of two anti-Iran troll campaigns dedicated to smearing pro-peace Americans, both tacitly Twitter-approved. And there’s plenty more where those came from. As US media and politicians continues to hyperventilate about Russian bots, who’s the real troll-master?

Pompeo was out front with the blame hours after the attack, absent a shred of proof beyond unspecified “intelligence” and a few other dubious incidents in the Middle East that the US has previously pinned on Iran (also absent a shred of proof). But even mainstream media has initially been reluctant to take his word for it, mostly because the narrative is so improbable – Japan’s PM Shinzo Abe was in Tehran when it happened, promising to make the “utmost effort” to de-escalate tensions, when, as if on cue, one Japanese ship and another carrying Japanese cargo were hit? What are the odds?

When even CNN acknowledged that the attack “doesn’t appear to benefit any of the protagonists in the region,” and Bloomberg admitted “Iran has little to gain” from blowing up the ships of its esteemed guest, Pompeo clearly understood another route of influence was required. Who better to call in for reinforcements than Twitter, which has demonstrated time and again its willingness to serve the US’ preferred narrative with mass deplatformings? 4,779 accounts believed to be “associated or backed by Iran” were removed – less than an hour after Pompeo’s declaration of Iranian guilt – for nothing more than tweeting “global news content, often with an angle that benefited the diplomatic and geostrategic views of the Iranian state.” This was deemed “platform manipulation,” and therefore unacceptable.

One troll down, thousands more to go

Tweeting with an angle that benefits the diplomatic and geostrategic views of the American state, however, is perfectly acceptable – at least, it wasn’t Twitter that brought the “Iran Disinformation Project” crashing to a halt earlier this month. The State Department officially ended its @IranDisinfo influence operation after the social media initiative, ostensibly created to “counter Iranian propaganda,” went rogue, smearing any and all critics of Trump’s hawkish Iran policy as paid operatives of the Iranian government. Human rights activists, students, journalists, academics, even insufficiently-militant American propagandists at RFE/RL, Voice of America and other US-funded outlets were attacked by @IranDisinfo – all on the US taxpayer’s dime.

Congress only learned of the project in a closed-door hearing on Monday, when the State Department confessed the troll campaign had taken $1.5 million in taxpayers’ money to attack those same taxpayers – all in the name of promoting “freedom of expression and free access to information.” The group contracted to operate Iran Disinfo, E-Collaborative for Civic Education, is run by an Iranian immigrant and claims to focus on strengthening “civil society” and “democracy” back home, though its work is almost exclusively US-focused and its connections with pro-war think tanks like the Foundation for Defense of Democracies have alarmed congressional staffers.

“What rules are in place to prevent state-funded organization from smearing American citizens? If there wasn’t public outcry, would the Administration have suspended funding for Iran Disinfo?” Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-Minnesota) tweeted after the mea culpa meeting. While the State Department was long barred from directing government-funded propaganda at its own citizens, that rule was quietly repealed in 2013 with the passage of the Smith-Mundt Modernization Act, which gave its narrative-spinners free reign to run influence operations at home. And while the Pentagon is technically forbidden from running psychological operations (“psy-ops”) against American citizens, that rule goes out the window in case of “domestic emergencies” – and the domestic emergency declared by then-President George W. Bush days after the September 11 terror attacks remains in effect, 18 years later.

Trump’s favorite anti-Iran troll

Nor was the State Department’s trolling operation the only anti-Iran psy-op to be unmasked in recent weeks. Heshmat Alavi, an anti-Iranian columnist promoted by the Trump administration and published in Forbes, the Hill, and several other outlets, was exposed by the Intercept as a propaganda construct operated by the Mojahedin-e Khalq (MEK), a controversial Iranian exile group often called a cult that has only recently lobbied its way off the US’ terror list. The MEK is notorious for buying the endorsement of American political figures, and national security adviser John Bolton, Senator Bob Menendez (D-NJ), and former New York mayor Rudy Giuliani are among those who have spoken at its events.

Heshmat Alavi’s stories were used to sell Trump’s withdrawal from the Iran deal to the Washington Post and other more reputable outlets, as well as to promote the MEK as a “main Iranian opposition group” and viable option for post-regime-change leadership of Iran – even though it is very much fringe and hated by the majority of Iranians for fighting on the side of Iraq during the Iran-Iraq war of the 1980s. Indeed, Alavi’s relentless advocacy for the MEK may have scared off a few of the sites that initially published his work.

None of the editors who’d published Alavi’s work had ever spoken to him and none could provide the Intercept with any evidence that he was not, in fact, “a persona run by a team of people from the political wing of the MEK.” Defectors confirmed that Alavi is a small part of a massive US-directed propaganda campaign.

“We were always active in making false news stories to spread to the foreign press and in Iran,” a Canadian MEK defector told the Intercept, describing a comprehensive online propaganda operation run out of the group’s former base in Iraq that sought to control the narrative about Iran on Facebook and Twitter. Alavi may be gone, his account quietly suspended by Twitter in the wake of the Intercept’s unmasking and his stories pulled from Forbes and the Diplomat, but there are more where he came from. The Intercept delivered Twitter all the evidence they needed to take down the MEK’s trolling network, a swamp of “coordinated inauthentic behavior” in which Alavi was a prominent node, but the social network sat on its hands.

Friends funding fiends

Add to this toxic US-approved stew the Israeli astroturf operation Act.IL, which in 2018 took $1.1 million from Israel’s Ministry of Strategic Affairs to troll Americans critical of Israeli policies, including its hostility toward Iran. Initially founded to combat the Iran nuclear deal, the Ministry’s mission has pivoted to combating the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement, for which it receives significant US funding (Israeli Lt-Gen Gabi Ashkenazi admitted in 2012 that American taxpayers contribute more to the country’s defense budget than Israeli taxpayers). Act.IL boasts it has gotten Americans fired from their jobs, and the app encourages users to accuse American students and journalists who support BDS of antisemitism, mass-report their posts, and otherwise engage in what would be called “coordinated inauthentic behavior” if any other country did it.

Act.IL is by no means the only Israeli trolling campaign aimed at American eyeballs, either. Psy-Group, the Israeli private intelligence company that infamously pitched a social media influence operation to the Trump campaign, ran a multi-pronged online smear operation to influence a local election in California in 2017 and has pitched dozens more. The Israel on Campus Coalition attacks pro-Palestinian student activists and professors through coordinated social media campaigns, while The Israel Project operates a network of Facebook groups whose admitted purpose is to smuggle pro-Israeli propaganda into users’ newsfeeds by concealing it among bland inspirational messages.

Such clear-cut deception by state-sponsored actors is a blatant violation of Facebook’s policies as they’ve been applied to other users, but the site claims the Israeli groups are kosher. Yet of the pro-Iran accounts deleted by Twitter, one “set” included 248 accounts “engaged with discussions related to Israel specifically” – these were shut down for nothing more than their country of origin, even as inauthentic accounts run by Israel were given carte-blanche to spew propaganda. Twitter and Facebook don’t mind being weaponized in the propaganda wars, as long as they’re working for the “right” side.

As 21st century wars are fought more and more in the informational sphere, the brightly-colored propaganda posters of the previous century have been replaced with relatively sophisticated social media influence operations. What Pompeo can’t accomplish by lying to the American public, the State Department will attempt to achieve through the slow and steady drip of disinformation.

US politicians, meanwhile, remain so fixated on the “Russian trolls stole the election!” narrative they’ve been flogging for the last three years that the Senate last week unanimously passed a bill to restrict entry to any foreign national convicted of “election meddling,” a toothless piece of legislative virtue-signaling that reveals their utter disconnection from reality. It’s more than a little ironic that they’d embrace and even pay for foreign meddling as long as they believe the trolls are working for them.

As Friedrich Nietzsche said,

“Whoever fights monsters should see to it that in the process he does not become a monster.” Or a troll.

*

Note to readers: please click the share buttons above or below. Forward this article to your email lists. Crosspost on your blog site, internet forums. etc.

This article was originally published in abbreviated form on RT.

Helen Buyniski‘s work has been published at RT, Ghion Journal, Progressive Radio Network, and Veterans Today, among other outlets. A journalist and photographer based in New York City, Helen has a BA in Journalism from New School University and also studied at Columbia University and New York University. Find more of her work at http://www.helenofdestroy.com and http://medium.com/@helen.buyniski, or follow her on Twitter @velocirapture23. She is a frequent contributor to Global Research.

All images in this article are from the author

What will Putin tell Erdogan and what was Netanyahu notified? ماذا سيسمع أردوغان من بوتين وماذا تبلّغ نتنياهو؟

What will Putin tell Erdogan and what was Netanyahu notified?

مايو 9, 2019

Written by Nasser Kandil,

The newspapers and media sites are filled with analyses and information attributed to “informed” sources about linking the Israeli raids on Syria with the Turkish seeking for a safe zone agreed upon with the Americans, and considering the ongoing movement in the southern and northern of Syria a way to weaken it by getting Iran and Hezbollah away from it, and the arrangement of the Turkish-Kurdish relationships under American-Russian consent. Those also support their conclusions with what they called the Russian silence towards the Israeli raids in the light of the resumption of the meetings between Israeli and Russian military delegations on one hand, and in the light of the American-Turkish agreement after a dispute on a safe zone and the Kurdish positive position towards it on the other hand.

After scrutiny, it can be said that these conclusions are a complementary part of the Israeli attacks and the Turkish threats. They aim at decreasing the threats resulted from the American withdrawal, to fill the gap resulted from it, and the seeking to distort the scene that foreshadows of the victory of the Syria and its president. The Turkish- Israeli alternation to occupy the political and military media scene under US sponsorship is an interpretation of that. To imagine that Russia is seeking to get the Israeli satisfaction after taming the Israeli military and deterring it is illogic especially at the time of the American withdrawal, and the focus on the Russian messages reported by the Israeli press to avoid the military and security tampering in Syria give signs for those who do not want to be victims of the media campaign. The scrutiny in the concept of the safe zone raises a fundamental question about how to set it through Turkish military incursion that is considered by Syria an aggression and occupation, and which is totally different from the Turkish presence in Idlib which was covered after the battle of Aleppo two years ago by Russia and Iran according to Astana path. Therefore, does Turkey have the will to prevent the Syrian army from the deployment in the areas from which the Americans withdraw through air embargo in the light of the Russian presence? And will Astana path remain after that?

What has been promoted by the “informed sources” means neglecting the facts of the past two years, If Turkey was in a state that can be adequate with American coverage, Astana path that culminated the defeat of Turkey and its armed groups in Aleppo would not be exist, and if Israel was in a state of being exclusive and sufficient with American coverage, the prevention of entering the Syrian airspace which culminated with the defeat of the armed groups backed by Israel in the Syrian south would not be achieved, as the situation of the Americans in Tanf base while they were seeing the strongholds of the armed groups in Ghouta falling in front of the strikes of the Syrian army without doing nothing, although their connection with Tanf base across the desert was dividing Syria into two parts. This was before the talk about the US withdrawal and before the achievement of the Russians, so how can Russia accept the division of Syria? in other words “the open war”, and how can Russia accept to end the alliance with Iran, Syria, and the resistance forces and take the risk of the defeat of its presence in the region while it is winning for fear of bothering Turkey or Israel, although it did not do so while they were at the peak of their strength.

Today the Russian President Vladimir Putin will meet the Turkish President Recep Erdogan in order to discuss the issue of the safe zone. Erdogan will hear decisive Russian words about respecting the Syrian legitimacy represented by the Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad and the Syrian army and refusing any military presence on the Syrian territory without that legitimacy. He will also hear clear words about the sticking to the unity and the sovereignty of Syria and about the controls governed by the path of Astana and the impossibility to violate them. Netanyahu heard the words of President Putin reported by the Russian officials that the Israeli movement will lead to a confrontation that will end with Israeli collision with Russia. So every party should be aware of its responsibilities and as long as the meeting will end with a clear statement it would be an appropriate opportunity for those who want to verify from that.

Translated by Lina Shehadeh,

ماذا سيسمع أردوغان من بوتين وماذا تبلّغ نتنياهو؟ 

يناير 23, 2019

ناصر قنديل

– تملأ الصحف والمواقع الإعلامية تحليلات ومعلومات منسوبة لمصادر «مطلعة» تدور حول ربط الغارات الإسرائيلية في سورية بالسعي التركي لمنطقة آمنة متفق عليها مع الأميركيين، واعتبار الحركة الجارية في جنوب سورية وشمالها لإضعاف مشروع الدولة السورية، وصولاً لإخراج إيران وحزب الله، وترتيب العلاقات التركية الكردية، بتوافق أميركي روسي، ويورد أصحاب «المصادر المطلعة» استنتاجاتهم بما يسمّونه الصمت الروسي على الغارات الإسرائيلية في ظل عودة اللقاءات بين وفود عسكرية إسرائيلية وروسية، من جهة، ومن جهة مقابلة بالتوافق الأميركي التركي بعد خلاف شديد على المنطقة الآمنة، والإعلان الكردي الإيجابي تجاهها.

– التدقيق في سياق المنطق الذي تُبنى عليه هذه الاستنتاجات، يمكن النظر إليها كجزء متمّم للاعتداءات الإسرائيلية والتهديدات التركية، الهادفتين لامتصاص بعض المخاطر المترتبة على الانسحاب الأميركي ومحاولة تقاسم ملء الفراغ الناتج عنه، والسعي لتطويق وقتل المناخ الذي يوحي بانتصار الدولة السورية ورئيسها، والتناوب التركي الإسرائيلي برعاية أميركية لتقاسم المسرح الإعلامي السياسي العسكري ليس إلا ترجمة لهذا البعد، فتخيّل روسيا العائدة لطلب الرضا الإسرائيلي بعد ترويض العسكرية الإسرائيلية وردعها، هو خروج عن المنطق، وأن يحدث هذا في زمن الانسحاب الأميركي، محض خرافة، والتمعّن في الرسائل الروسية التي نقلتها الصحافة الإسرائيلية تحذيراً من التمادي في اللعب العسكري والأمني داخل سورية، يقدم الكثير لمن يريد ألا يكون ضحية الحملات الإعلامية، والتدقيق في مفهوم المنطقة الآمنة يطرح سؤالاً جوهرياً حول كيفية إقامتها، بتوغل عسكري تركي تعتبره سورية عدواناً واحتلالاً، وهو مختلف كلياً عن الوجود التركي في إدلب الذي حاز بعد معركة حلب قبل عامين الغطاء الروسي الإيراني وفقاً لمسار أستانة، وهل تملك تركيا القدرة والإرادة على منع الجيش السوري من الانتشار في المناطق التي سينسحب منها الأميركيون بحظر جوي، في ظل الوجود الروسي، وهل يتبقى شيء من مسار أستانة إذا تم ذلك؟

– ما تسوقه «المصادر المطلعة» لا يعني إلا القفز فوق ما تقوله وقائع السنتين الماضيتين، لجهة أن تركيا لو كانت بوضع يتيح الانفراد، أو الاكتفاء بتغطية أميركية، لما كان مسار أستانة، الذي توّج هزيمة حلب لتركيا وجماعاتها المسلحة، وأن «إسرائيل» لو كانت بوضع يتيح لها الانفراد الموازي، أو الاكتفاء بتغطية أميركية، لما كان الامتناع عن دخول الأجواء السورية، الذي توّج هزيمة الجنوب السوري للجماعات المسلحة المدعومة من «إسرائيل»، كما كان الحال الأميركي في قاعدة التنف وهم يرون معقل الجماعات المسلحة في الغوطة يتهاوى أمام ضربات الجيش السوري تحت أنظارهم، من دون أن يقدموا لها شيئاً وهي التي كان اتصالها بقاعدة التنف عبر الصحراء يشطر سورية إلى شطرين، وكل ذلك جرى والأميركيون كانوا ما قبل حديث الانسحاب، والروس كانوا ما قبل تذوق طعم الإنجاز، فكيف يُعقل أن تقبل روسيا عملياً بتقسيم سورية، وتقاسمها بما يعني بقاء الحرب فيها مفتوحة، وهل تفك عقد التحالف مع إيران وسورية وقوى المقاومة، وتخاطر بهزيمة حضورها في المنطقة وهي تنتصر، خشية إغضاب تركيا و»إسرائيل»، وهي لم تفعل ذلك وهما في ذروة القوة، ترتضي فعله وهما مهزومتان؟

– اليوم سيستقبل الرئيس الروسي فلاديمير بوتين الرئيس التركي رجب أردوغان، والهدف التركي هو بحث المنطقة الآمنة، وسيسمع أردوغان كلاماً روسياً حاسماً حول احترام الشرعية السورية التي يمثلها الرئيس السوري بشار الأسد والجيش السوري، ورفض أي وجود عسكري على الأرض السورية خارج نطاق هذه الشرعية، وسيسمع كلاماً واضحاً وحاسماً عن التمسك بوحدة وسيادة سورية، وعن الضوابط التي تحكم مسار أستانة واستحالة التسامح مع انتهاكه، كما وصل لمسامع نتنياهو ما قاله المسؤولون الروس نقلاً عن الرئيس بوتين، بأن الحركة الإسرائيلية ستدفع المنطقة إلى مواجهة ستؤدي إلى تصادم إسرائيلي مع روسيا، وعندها يجب أن يكون كل طرف مدرك مسؤولياته، وثبات كلام الرئيس بوتين لكليهما يكفي إثباته بما يُقال لأحدهما، وطالما أن اللقاء اليوم سينتهي ببيان يمكن قراءة ما بين سطوره، سيكون مناسبة للإثبات والنفي لكل الذين يريدون التحقق.

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The BBC: The Most Potent State Propagandist

The BBC: The Most Potent State Propagandist

By Dr. David Halpin,

Blatant disinformation spews from the western media. And law is never mentioned. Sen.Mark Rubio can threaten a most cruel assassination of Nicolas Maduro, whilst Trump, Bolton (1) and Pence promise that ‘everything is on the table’. Psychopaths join together very easily and according to Hare (2) they make up about 4% of all populations worldwide. 

What the voters in all those ‘democratic’ nations fail to realise is that the characteristics of the psychopath make for an easy ascent of the greasy pole. Charm, lying and an able tongue are a few.

But how are they sustained? How do they escape preventive detention?

Of course, the ‘media’ is key. It works on the in-built prejudices of the subject populations, which it helps to generate. It makes sure they are not informed and that the big lies sink in with ease. I recall reading that the Third Reich found value in the polished, cunning British propaganda.

The reporting of the Syrian ‘civil war’ by the BBC is a prime example. In these islands the BBC/State Propagandist is ace.

To respond to it one needs to listen to the audio or watch the television so one can laboriously record the words. At one time the flagship programme, Today, produced a transcript of the whole three hours. With word recognition technology that would be easy to revive but that will not happen. The fact is that in every hour of its national and World Service Broadcasts there is cardinal omission, usually of the victim nation’s voice, distortion or frank lies. There is much more, and the BBC is skilled at inserting important nuances. As a lonely individual in an ocean of lies, it is impossible to keep up.

Here are a few fragments of its recent output.

a.

Dear Mr Landale, 8-02-19

I saw you speak on the BBC1 evening news about 4 days ago. Venezuela, in spite of its vast mineral wealth, has been destabilized. Corruption by the rich and perhaps poor governance are two factors, but another are the sanctions installed in 2015 by the USA against international law. We know the latter is worse than hollow.  I do not know whether other countries have been strong armed in collaborating with these sanctions as with Iran.

I believe you did not mention sanctions in your piece.  BBC coverage of this country in these last few weeks has been unbalanced.  Will Grant in Cuba does better. (Ed. He does not it seems)

yours sincerely David Halpin FRCS

No reply

b.

Malaysia’s Minister of Youth and Sports, Syed Saddiq Syed Abdul Rahman, said the country stood by its decision to bar Israeli athletes.

“If hosting an international sporting event is more important than standing up for our Palestinian brothers and sisters who get murdered, maimed and tortured by the Netanyahu regime, that means Malaysia has truly lost its moral compass,” he said in a statement. (3)

The British State Broadcaster could not say these truths to the millions. No coverage by the BBC.

c.

Chris Mason

Chris Mason (image on the right, from his twitter account), a BBC Westminster correspondent is engaging. He was speaking of the critical reaction to the loss of Shamima Begum’s third baby in a refugee camp in Syria. She had gone to live with the ‘jihadis’ at age 15 with two girlfriends. Home Secretary Sajid Javid had stripped British citizenship from her. (It emerged he had done the same to two other women previously.)

He failed to say that the UK had supported some of these super-terrorists who came from outside Syria. The PM and the then Foreign Secretary had both stated their intention of ‘toppling Assad’. The aim of this proxy destruction of an ancient country was clear. So their shunning of this young woman and her three dead babies was a montrous hypocrisy. The BBC did its duty and joined in. And massaged it further by speaking of the UK giving £170 million ‘to Syria’.

At another time it reported that a UK government spokesman said the death of any child was “tragic and deeply distressing for the family”. As it was to the hundreds of dear children and their mothers who fleeing from the manufactured war drowned in the Mediterranean Sea. Or those that were blown apart or maimed by the ‘jihadis’ as ordered by Saudi Arabia and its slaves to money.

The BBC pumped out massive black propaganda to justify the illegal wars on Iraq and Libya, and continues to distort completely the maelstrom of suffering and destruction brought by plan to Syria. The journalist, Robert Stuart, ‘contended that sequences filmed by BBC personnel and others at Atareb Hospital, Aleppo on 26 August 2013 purporting to show the aftermath of an incendiary bomb attack on a nearby school are largely, if not entirely, staged.’ His evidence is here. (4)

The BBC distracts with much ‘entertainment’, including sport, and now has trailers with fast changing mindless images. It appears to be attempting to further shrink thought and morality. The other night at a Comic Relief show in a theatre with a largely female audience, three naked men were on the stage. They kept swapping balloons from their chests to genitalia, and turned to present their ugly backsides to a largely embarassed audience.

There are peerless BBC programmes. Among them are Countryfile, which centres on farming and the beauty of the British Isles, and Call the Midwife. This recalled the caring spirit and the energy of the young NHS. Within its ranks there are moral, imaginative and very talented people. But they cannot have much influence on the output.

The ether is dominated by the psychopath with talk of endless aggressive war including sanctions, as with the collective, long and increasing punishment of two million people in Gaza.

Please someone, take Bolton and show him a tight flower bud in midwinter and later as it emerges in all its beauty and intricacy. Take Trump, alone, and see the mother suckling her tiny baby. An ultimate symbol of peace.

*

Note to readers: please click the share buttons below. Forward this article to your email lists. Crosspost on your blog site, internet forums. etc.

David Halpin FRCS is a retired orthopaedic and trauma surgeon who yearns for peace and especially in Palestine. He has also spent much time, with a few others, pleading for an inquest on Dr David Kelly, which uniquely has never happened. The NHS is his other major concern. His woodlands that he planted give some peace.

Notes

1. http://members5.boardhost.com/xxxxx/msg/1552205009.html Bolton given “Defender of Israel” award from Zionist lobby that helped elect him

2. http://www.minddisorders.com/Flu-Inv/Hare-Psychopathy-Checklist.html

3. https://www.channelnewsasia.com/news/sport/paralympics-malaysia-stripped-of-right-to-host-world-11172762

4. https://bbcpanoramasavingsyriaschildren.wordpress.com/2016/03/28/bbc-trust-no-evidence-that-presenters-facebook-images-brought-bbc-into-disrepute/

Featured image is from Media Lens

Behind the «Israeli» Acknowledgment of Syria Strike

3 hours ago

Fatima Haydar

In a rare acknowledgement, the “Israeli” entity confirmed Saturday that it had conducted an airstrike on Syria, targeting Damascus airport.

At his weekly cabinet meeting, “Israeli” Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, confirmed that the “Israeli” Occupation Forces had conducted an air raid, saying that “Just in the past 36 hours, the air force attacked Iranian depots full of Iranian weapons in the Damascus International Airport”.

Retired Lebanese Major General and political researcher, Hisham Jaber, highlights some key issues regarding the “Israeli” airstrike on Syria.

Maj. Gen. Jaber indicated that it is “a normal thing that ‘Israel’ issues a confirmation –regardless of it being false – regarding the strike. After all, Syria had already announced, on Saturday, that Syrian air defenses had intercepted an air raid carried out by the ‘Israeli’ entity.”

The “Israeli” entity typically refrains from commenting on individual airstrikes in Syria, but does generally acknowledge that it carries out raids against “Iranian- and Hezbollah-linked targets” in the country.

In this context, Maj. Gen. Jaber slammed these “Israeli” allegations saying, “It is one thing for ‘Israel’ to claim hitting Iranian and Hezbollah targets – which is not true at all – for wherever there are Syrian troops, Iranian advisors are present”.

The “Israeli” acknowledgement came at a time when the IOF had announced it has completed the so-called “Northern Shield” tunnel digging operation, amidst intensive reports on “Israeli” media speculating why Hezbollah Secretary General His Eminence Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah hasn’t commented on the ongoing events.

“Regarding the tunnels, irrespective of their presence or absence, it has been said that tunnel digging breached United Nation’s resolution 1701. But what is important is knowing the exact date these tunnels had been allegedly dug, if any,” said Gen. Jaber.

He went to explain that, “Had these alleged tunnels been dug by the Resistance between the years 2000 (the end of the ‘Israeli’ aggression) and 2006, then they did not breach any resolution, since UN resolution 1701 had not been declared at that time,” adding that “We are free to do whatsoever on our land”.

Maj. Gen Jaber pointed out that the aforementioned issue should have been stated bluntly by the Lebanese State when faced with the UNIFIL’s statement regarding the tunnel digging.

However, the retired army general posed a critical question , asking, “if it has been proved that the digging took place after 2006 and the tunnels were in fact a breach of 1701 on Lebanese soil, then how many times has ‘Israel’ breached that same resolution by trespassing Lebanese air, land and sea?”

“This is the end point. This is where the issue stops! We have nothing further to add,” Gen. Jaber proclaimed, adding,

“The Resistance is not obliged to adhere to ‘Israeli’ declarations as to publicize the number of their missiles and where they are kept. It’s is totally absurd! It’s not our job to reassure the ‘Israelis’ if we have or haven’t acquired ballistic missiles.”

Furthermore, the retired army general explained that the Resistance possessed “enough” missiles and

“‘Israel’ should stop targeting Syria under the pretext of preventing Hezbollah from acquiring more missiles via Syria”.

A final point regarding the alleged tunnels, Maj. Gen. Jaber asserted that “the Resistance’s stance regarding that issue is wise. And it doesn’t want to get caught in a give-and-take situation with the ‘Israelis’”.

Source: Al-Ahed News

Eisenkot’s Legacy in Confronting Lebanon: Restraint & the Growing Capabilities of the Resistance

Jihad Haidar

The retirement of every chief of staff of the “Israeli” army, with some exceptions such as the resignation of Dan Halutz following the 2006 defeat in Lebanon, is normally accompanied by propaganda and theatrical displays.

Putting that aside, we find that Gadi Eisenkot’s retirement from his post, his exit from military service and the succession of Aviv Kochavi coincide with major strategic and practical developments surrounding the Zionist entity.

At the level of the theatrical display, Eisenkot was keen to appear in the media, trying to showcase what he called achievements against the axis of resistance. To this end, he conducted a series of interviews that grabbed headlines and newspaper articles in a celebratory manner. What made the “Israelis” really happy during Eisenkot’s term was that he did not involve them in any war with regional foes – especially since the public is aware that the internal front will be one of its main arenas in any broad confrontation.

In the past four years, however, it has been become apparent that “Israel” – during Eisenkot’s term – has adopted a “brinkmanship” policy in the hope that it will extract concessions from Hezbollah and restraint it in case Tel Aviv opted to launch an aggression. It is well known that one of the conditions for a successful “brinkmanship” policy is that one side succeeds in persuading the other that it is prepared to go to the limit. But Hezbollah faced this policy with a firm stance forcing “Israel” to retreat and back down. Although “Israel” had many reasons for the operational initiative, the political and security decision makers backed down due to their concerns over the price of any military confrontation. In light of this, “Israel’s” messages of intimidation turned into additional victories for Hezbollah enhancing the resistance’s deterrence force. As such, the enemy became more exposed.

In this regard, the enemy tries to mislead when praising calm with Lebanon, especially since it did not want this calm, which formed an umbrella for the resistance to continue to accumulate and develop its military and missile capabilities. At the very least, Tel Aviv was seeking a similar version of what was happening in Syria. It terms of ambition, “Israel” aims to exploit Hezbollah’s preoccupation with countering Takfiri terrorism, to attack it, destroy its strategic capabilities or restrict it. Thereby giving “Israel” a wide margin in attacks at the local and regional levels.

On the other hand, calm was a demand for the resistance for several reasons. First, the resistance does not adopt an open war strategy with the “Israeli” entity. It has its other strategy in the struggle with the enemy in Palestine. Second, it provides it with the opportunity to continue to build and develop its defensive, deterrent and offensive capabilities. And this is what happened. And third, it is a demand of the Lebanese people as it is a gateway to building and resolving crises.

A quick glance back reveals that these demands and objectives have been achieved to a very large extent, distinguishing Lebanon from all of its Arab neighbors. The negatives that it is currently grappling with are the result of the performance of the ruling political class at the economic, political and social levels.

It is clear that if the chief of staff of the “Israeli” army had to speak objectively, in response to the army’s command, Syria has won, and the threat of rebuilding the Syrian army is again on the horizon. Hezbollah along with Syria triumphed and removed an existential danger threatening it and the people of the region. The axis of resistance triumphed in the battle regionally. All “Israeli efforts to drain Hezbollah and divide Syria have failed.  The resistance succeeded in developing its military and missile capabilities. In light of this, Hezbollah’s Secretary General His Eminence Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah announced that the group succeeded in acquiring precision rockets. “Israel” recognizes the effects of the rockets as dangerous to regional equations and its strategic depth. However, the effects of possessing precision missiles are more significant than the effects of the tens of thousands of rockets themselves.

Source: Al-Ahed News

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Was 9/11 Planned In Israel? New Insight That They Don’t Want You To See — Rebel Voice

The old adage when investigating a crime is to follow the money. Perhaps this also applies to 9/11? This article presents one possibility as to why 9/11 took place with the resultant loss of 2996 innocent lives.

via Was 9/11 Planned In Israel? New Insight That They Don’t Want You To See — Rebel Voice

The Infowar On Xinjiang Failed, Now They’re Targeting Pakistan & PM Imran Khan

By Andrew Korybko
Source

The Western Mainstream Media’s infowar about the true state of the anti-terrorist situation in Xinjiang failed after a group of diplomats and journalists were unprecedentedly allowed to visit some of the education and job-training facilities in the strategically located province, after which the weaponized narrative was tweaked to become one of “China buying off Pakistan’s silence”, which dishonestly portrays the Muslim Great Power’s pious leader as a religious hypocrite and dangerously risks provoking terrorist attacks against him and his government.   

2018 was predominantly characterized by four main stories for Pakistan – the rise of Imran Khan as Pakistan’s latest Prime Minister; the Tehreek-i-Labbaik Pakistan’s (TLP) anti-blasphemy protests and subsequently seditious calls for acts of terrorism against the state; the Hybrid War on CPEC that peaked near the end of the year with the Karachi & Chabahar attacks and the first-mentioned mastermind’s assassination in Afghanistan; and the creeping awareness of the Western Mainstream Media’s infowar narrative about China’s alleged treatment of the Uighur in Xinjiang. It’s therefore not surprising that all four of them are still relevant at the beginning of 2019, but there are worrying signs that hostile perception managers are attempting to weave them together as part of a renewed destabilization campaign against Pakistan.

The Hybrid War on CPEC received an unexpected setback after one of the so-called “Balochistan Liberation Army’s” (BLA) top terrorists was assassinated in Afghanistan right before the New Year, which occurred just a few weeks before China’s unpreceded diplomatic and journalistic opening in Xinjiang when it recently allowed members of both professional communities to visit some of its education and job-training facilities that it constructed there as part of its anti-terrorist operations in the strategically located province. Beijing even announced that UN officials are welcome to travel to the region as well, provided of course that they follow the proper procedures and don’t interfere in the country’s domestic affairs. These two developments are the reason why the weaponized narratives that were unleashed against both countries are now being tweaked.

Recognizing that the BLA terrorists were dealt a mighty blow by the recent assassination of one of their leaders and the growing popularity of Dr. Jumma Marri Khan’s Overseas Pakistani Baloch Unity (OPBU) that peacefully reintegrates wayward overseas Baloch into Pakistani society, and realizing that the world is becoming aware of the fact that the scandalous stories about China’s treatment of the Uighur in Xinjiang are fake news, the forces that are hostile to both multipolar Great Powers are scrambling to adapt their infowar techniques to these changed conditions. It’s with this situational context in mind that one should approach the latest claims coming from the popular American-based financial and business news site Business Insider, which just published a very inaccurate portrayal of Pakistani-Chinese relations.

In an article titled “Pakistan abruptly stopped calling out China’s mass oppression of Muslims. Critics say Beijing bought its silence”, one of the outlet’s news reporters attempted to make the case that China paid Pakistan off so that it wouldn’t use its influence in the larger international Muslim community (“Ummah”) to rally its co-confessionals against Beijing’s alleged mistreatment of the Uighur. The author drew attention to a widely publicized fake news report that the country’s Federal Minister for Religious Affairs supposedly brought this topic up in a critical way when meeting with the Chinese Ambassador last September. Bothofficials later denied the media’s reports about their talks, but the damage was already done because few people who heard the fake news were made aware of their response.

The writer then tried to make it seem like PM Khan was sidestepping the Uighur issue after reminding her audience about Chinese support for Pakistan’s economy, with her innuendo being that “Beijing bought its silence”. She then quotes two people to press home this point, the second of whom is Peter Irwin, who’s described as a “project manager” at the so-called “World Uyghur Congress” (WUC). Unbeknownst to her audience and conspicuously left out of her report, that man functions as a spokesman for an organization that many in China and beyond believe to be the political wing of the so-called “Eastern Turkistan Islamic Movement” (ETIM) which was designated as a terrorist group by the UN in 2002. This makes it very disturbing that his words were included by the author in the article’s title.

After declaring that China was “buying the silence of Pakistan”, Irwin goes on to say that “he knows he simply needs to keep his mouth shut”, concluding that “someone like Khan has a very good idea of the balance of power in their relationship with China.” This dangerously insinuates that PM Khan and his government are being paid to stay silent about the plight of Muslims, which would make them religious hypocrites if it was true and accordingly paint them as targets of Takfiri terrorists (i.e. those who target alleged “infidels”/”apostates”). Dolkun Isa, the WUC leader who China regards as a terroristrecently slammed Muslim countries for not supporting him, so it might be that Irwin was tasked by his boss to weaponize this narrative against Pakistan and PM Khan personally.

This is exceptionally dangerous in the Pakistani context because leaders of the TLP opposition party were arrested late last year on charges of sedition and terrorism after they called on their supporters to commits acts of violence against state officials on the purported basis that they were violating fundamentalist Islamic tenets following the Supreme Court’s acquittal of a Christian woman who was previously convicted of blasphemy during a high-profile case. Some of the group’s most religiously extremist sympathizers inside of Pakistan and abroad might interpret Irwin’s hypocrite/infidel/apostate insinuation that he just spread on the globally famous Business Insider information outlet about the pious Prime Minister as a “call to action”, just like Isa might have planned to happen all along as punishment for Pakistan’s refusal to support his narrative.

The WUC-ETIM’s intention seems to be to rekindle the Hybrid War on CPEC by expanding it beyond its now-contained Baloch “nationalist”-driven acts of terrorism to become an “Ummah”-wide militant jihad against the Pakistani state for its position towards China’s alleged treatment of the Uighurs, which is increasingly being revealed to have been the proper one all along after Beijing’s recent diplomatic and journalistic opening in the province debunked the last year’s worth of fake news about this emotive issue. It’s precisely because it turned out that Pakistan was right all along, and its refusal to fall for this infowar narrative doomed the plans to organize an “Ummah”-wide militant jihad against China, that it’s now being targeted through this desperate Hybrid War scenario.

No one should automatically assume that Business Insider is knowingly acting as an instrument of Hybrid War against Pakistan, and it might just be a coincidence that its news reporter decided to obtain exclusive comments on this topic from an individual representing an organization that Beijing regards as a political front for a UN-designated terrorist group (which she didn’t inform her audience of), but the outlet’s irresponsibly inaccurate portrayal of the country’s relations with China nevertheless advances the aforementioned scenario regardless of its original intent. A globally renowned US-based information platform is openly being used by what many consider to be a terrorist-connected organization to spread its dangerously false innuendo that PM Khan is a hypocrite/infidel/apostate who was paid off by China to remain silent about the supposed plight of fellow Muslims, and that’s extremely alarming.

Fanning the Flames of Dissent: The Ruling Class Is Having Trouble with Its Israel-Palestine Narrative

By Jason Hirthlet
Source

Hanukkah_2dc7c.jpg

Recently, the White House hosed two Hanukkah celebrations attended by the president, first lady, and vice president. One can imagine the general bonhomie as the Trumps rubbed elbows with fellow billionaire Sheldon Adelson and other luminaries of the ‘special relationship’. Trump was cheered for his provocative move of the American embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, something many observers call a sea change in U.S. foreign policy. Of course, almost every recent president has publicly stated that Jerusalem is Israel’s proper capital. Trump was simply the first president to actually follow through on the implications of that position.

In its coverage of the events, Trump was assailed by the Times of Israel for telling American Jews that Israel was “your country”, as if they were not American citizens. The paper noted that if Barack Obama had made such a rhetorical misstep, he would’ve been savaged by conservative media. As it was, Trump’s language was generally passed over in silence in the mainstream press. Despite that, the president and his coterie of Zionist comrades are likely becoming an ever more isolated pack of wolves on the American scene, their inflexible ideology and its brutal manifestations alienating them from popular opinion in the U.S.

The Scourge of Self-Deception

In his excellent book The Folly of Fools, evolutionary biologist Robert Trivers expounded his theory of deceit and self-deception among humans, including his concept of false historical narratives. A false historical narrative is essentially when a nation or tribe or people collectively believe a false version of their history. Trivers’ particular example? Israel. The author unpacks the country’s long-standing denial of Palestinian agency in its zealous Zionist pursuit of Greater Israel as a form of collective self-delusion. One that has had considerable influence in the United States where AIPAC wields outsized influence on Capitol Hill.

One wonders if false historical narratives are more likely to befall colonial settler nations. After all, the United States itself is beholden to any number of false historical narratives: the belief that America promotes and defends freedom around the world; the belief that it won World War Two; the lack of acknowledgement of the Native American genocide in its historical narrative; and that it has served as an impartial mediator in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

This latter belief has been lately exploded by several excellent books, among them Rashid Khalidi’s Brokers of Deceit. Thanks in large part to such works, the rise of social media, and the militancy and visibility of the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) movement, the general tenor of debate in the United States, at least, has changed. This is deeply troubling for Tel Aviv and Washington, who have long depended on a tightly controlled, topdown narrative to manage opinion on Palestinian issues, a storyline dutifully disseminated by sycophantic corporate media. But a false narrative cannot survive or thrive amid a digital space of unbridled debate, much of it agitated unmediated wrangling with a tendency to devolve into ad hominem attacks, but also a space with plenty of powerful non-mainstream journalism bringing fresh perspectives to the topic.

Damming the Flood

Only heavy-handed censorship can hope to stem the tide of dissident voices. Left unaddressed, they will chop the legs out from beneath the mainstream fairy tale of Israeli rectitude and Arab savagery. And that is, of course, precisely what is happening in the social space.

Facebook has purged some 400 pro-Palestinian voices from its platform for violating “community standards,” an ironic phrase given that real community standards would necessarily have to be created by the community, rather than its ‘owner’, presently being advised by the neoliberal, neocon Atlantic Council. Facebook labeled the banned commentary as “hate speech”, a term unsupported by the Supreme Court but happily flung about by the Israeli lobby–alongside the stalwart ‘anti-Semitism’–in efforts to shutter dissent. Twitter, too, has fallen in line with the pro-Israel position of both the government and its mainstream media lapdogs. It has shutteredattempts to out IDF commando unit soldiers who raided Gaza last month. The censorship aligns with Israeli military censors in Tel Aviv.

CNN wasted no time firing Marc Lamont Hill after a fairly normal speech at the United Nations during its commemoration of the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People. Board members at Temple University, where he teaches, rumbled about punitive measures. The treatment of Hill falls in line with a long history of attacks on African-Americans who disagree with American foreign policy, from Paul Robeson during the McCarthy era to the many victims of the FBI’s COINTELPRO effort to destroy black solidarity movements. Even Andrew Young, serving as Jimmy Carter’s UN Ambassador, was forced to resign when he took the bold step of actually talking to the Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO). An alliance of oppressed peoples across national borders is a true existential nightmare for imperialists, explaining in part why so many African-American leftists have been swiftly and energetically besieged by establishment agencies.

A Leaky Vessel

But it may be too little too late. Holes are being ripped in the Zionist false narrative, and it is leaking hard truths like a sieve. At last, Americans are beginning to recognize the cruelty of the Israeli occupation. For years the international community has angrily brandished UN resolutions against the occupation, about the right of return, and others declaring Zionism as a form of racism. To little avail. Some sixty resolutions have been widely ignored in the west. With this occupation more than any other conflict in the geopolitical arena, it is as if international law does not exist.

John Mearsheimer and Stephen Walt punctured a gaping hole in the side of stealthy Zionist influence with their landmark work The Israel Lobby and U.S. Foreign Policy. But the social media response to the brutal Israeli siege of Gaza in 2014 was likely the watershed moment. Progressives like Max Blumenthal assiduously documented the assault, while the glib Obama administration’s willingness to sell arms to Israel in the midst of its crushing attack struck many Americans as almost unconscionably blasé. So too the international response to the recently passed Basic Law, in which Israel is confirmed as a Jewish-ethnic state, with all mention of democracy stripped from the language. In one recent step by a major company, Airbnb recused itself from doing business in occupied territories, a move lauded by Palestinian supporters and naturally deplored by Zionists.

The perceptual gap between the views of the American populace and the Israeli citizenry appears to be widening. A recent polling result in Israel uncovered widespread racism targeting Arabs and Palestinians. Israelis were uncomfortable in large numbers to a variety of hypothetical interactions with Palestinians: if their children made friends with Palestinian children, if their neighbors were Palestinian, if people near them spoke in Arabic, and so on. Likewise, many said they’d be unlikely to rent to Palestinians and felt Israelis deserved job placement consideration over Arabs. As a comparison with a comparable European poll showed, Israeli discomfort with Arabs was more widespread than European discomfort with Jews, undermining the MSM discussion of rising anti-Semitism, a phenomenon that Foreign Policy argued was not tied to rising criticism of Israel.

A University of Maryland poll of Americans showed growing support for a one-state solution, as more observers have come to believe that rampant Israeli settlement-building in occupied territory have made a two-state solution completely unrealistic. That is, apart from some construction that posited a Palestinian state composed of tiny isolated cantons vigilantly policed by the IDF on the least arable land available (the rest having been annexed by entitled settlers).

A one-state solution is an anathema to Zionists. Israel has long harbored a fear of one day being outnumbered by Arabs in its own ‘homeland’. One hears the occasional trumpeting of a demographic ‘time bomb’ (and sometimes arguments that give lie to the concept). Israelis havecited the ‘security situation’ as an incentive to reproduce. In any event, settlements continue apace. It is instructive to note that inside Israel, there is vigorous debate on this issue: not about the validity of settlements, but the pace at which they are constructed.

Americans also increasingly support sanctions on Israel for its continued settlement activity. This undoubtedly partly owing the aforementioned thaw in commentary, particularly of the non-professional variety, but also perhaps has to do with the fact that Washington has leveled sanctions against so many perceived foes in recent years: Venezuela, Nicaragua, Russia, China, Syria, Iran, and on and on. Why, the public must wonder, is Israel left out of this seemingly indiscriminate use of economic leverage?

Zionists have mounted vigorous resistance to BDS, and have persuaded Congress to put forward the Israel Anti-Boycott Act, which would criminalize any kind of voluntary boycotting of Israel and its settlements. This last argument reflects the threadbare smear that pro-Israeli hawks like Alan Dershowtiz and other informally appointed paladins of the cause have long used to defend criticism of Israel: that any criticism of Israel or Zionism is a de facto attack on Jews and therefore anti-Semitic. This attempt to conflate Israel with all Jewry is not unlike the facile use of the “hate speech” to encompass all varieties of criticism.

The Race to Narrative Hegemony

Yet dire reports surface almost daily, as Israel clamors to bar and ban and liquidate resistance. Among the recent stories that must have Israeli PR groups a furor: the expelling of Human Rights Watch officials from the country, the shooting of unarmed protestors during the ‘Great March of Return’ border protests, remorseless extrajudicial killings, the expansion of “admissions committees” to restrict Palestinian access to housing, the rationing of electricity and medicines to desperate Gazans, the forcible exile of Bedouins from historic villages. The list is interminable.

Perhaps for these reasons rather in spite of them, some 38 percent of Americans, including 37 percent of Jewish Americans polled, think Israel has too much influence in the American political system. Democrats in particular are increasingly favorable to actually neutral policies toward Israelis and Palestinians, not least because of Obama’s chilly relationship with Tel Aviv, and Benjamin Netanyahu’s undermining of the former president’s JCPOA with Iran.

It is critical to note the yawning abyss between the corporate state and corporate media positions on Israeli-Palestinian issues and those of the American public. While the MSM continues its pro-Israel stance, the ideological ground beneath it is shifting like sand, as Americans have engaged in online debates that have in some cases broadened their perspectives and in others deepened their partisanship. It is forever ironic that efforts to suppress a particular viewpoint tend to exacerbate it. As the mainstream become ever more strident in their response to heterodox opinions, the objections only grow louder. As one might expect, the historical narrative around Israel is now freighted with heretical objections, its propositions subject to relentless dissection in the digital sphere.

It is no surprise then, that Trump’s friends at those White House Hanukkah parties have grown shrill and heavy-handed in their attempts to shout down a rising chorus of resistance to the party line. The question is, can they push Washington and America’s social media giants hard enough to foreclose the numberless avenues of dissent fast enough to salvage what’s left of a tawdry argument for apartheid.

 

بين الكورنيت ودرع الشمال «بروباغندا» الأنفاق

ديسمبر 6, 2018

روزانا رمّال

من المؤكد أن ملاحظة المتغيرات السياسية والعسكرية الكبرى في المنطقة تتفرّد الحكومات الإقليمية والدولية في قراءتها من مدخل اساسي ووحيد هو نفسه القادر على التاكيد على الانقلاب الجذري بالمفاهيم السياسية من عدمها وعلى احتساب موازين القوى من البقاء على ما كانت عليه، هذا الحساب ينطلق من الحكومة الاسرائيلية وسلوكها باتجاه القضايا الأساسية المتعلقة بالحفاظ على أمنها القومي وحضورها القوي في المنطقة وكيفية شبك العلاقات مع دول الجوار من أجل الحفاظ على هذا الأمن المصطنع غالباً القائم على «المستجدّات» التي تجعل من موقعها أقوى.

البحث عن الحدث اليوم هو في «إسرائيل» ويدور حولها فوحده البيت الأبيض الجهة التي تجمّد التسويات بانتظار الملف الأكبر المرتبط «بتسوية القرن أو صفقته»، ومن قلب التطور بالملف «الإسرائيلي الفلسطيني» تقدّم أرضية المعادلة الجديدة، لكنها تبدو متعثرة حتى الساعة. لا يعني ذلك عدم المضي الأميركي بها بالتعاون مع دول عربية وخليجية طبّعت مع «إسرائيل» فحسب، بل قد يعني التأجيل بانتظار تحقيق معطيات أقدر على دعم المخطط. وها هو القبول العربي لمجاورة دولة يهودية للكيان الإسرائيلي بأغلبها صارت محققة ما خلا العقبة الاساسية المتمثلة بتحالف يقوم على خليط الايديولوجية والثوابت القومية والذي يضمّ الموقف السوري واللبناني من جهة حزب الله كحركة مقاتلة.

كان من المنتظر أن يكون تعبيد الطريق الإسرائيلي امام صفقة القرن أعنف وأقدر على إحداث فارق ضمن المحور المقصود حتى بدا أن «إسرائيل» بدأت منذ أشهر باللجوء الى اساليب اقرب الى الفورة الإعلامية والبروباغندا منها إلى إحداث فارق في العمق الأمني والسياسي للحساب الذي كرست من أجله حشد مواقف دول العالم كلها. واحدة من المفارقات حادثة الإشاعات التي اطلقها نتنياهو بوجود صواريخ لحزب الله بجوار مطار بيروت امام المجتمع الدولي من على منبر الامم المتحدة الامر الذي تكرّر اليوم مجدداً بإعلان مفاجئ عن عملية اطلقت عليها «إسرائيل» «درع الشمال» الموكلة البحث عن أنفاق حزب الله، وذلك بإعلان عريض لا يتكافأ مع أي عمل عسكري وازن ولا يتطابق مع ضرورة المحافظة على السرية العسكرية بخطوات من هذا النوع وهذه الدقة. والسؤال لماذا؟

يؤكد مصدر وازن ومطلع على تطورات الحدود اللبنانية الجنوبية لـ«البناء» أن ما يطرح اليوم موضوع لدى القيادات الأمنية المعنية بمحور سورية حزب الله وإيران ضمن حلقة وحيدة وهي الفشل الإسرائيلي الكبير في الجبهة السورية طيلة أكثر من سبع سنوات، خصوصاً بما يتعلق بالهاجس الذي يطوقها من الجولان بدون أي تقدم عسكري لمصلحتها مع المعارضة المسلحة التي خذلتها إضافة الى اسباب اساسية تتعلق بتطورات قطاع غزة والإحراج الذي تسببته قوى المقاومةـ وربما ظهور صواريخ «كورنيت» التي استخدمت كدليل على إعلان واضح منها على تنسيق مع كافة الجبهات في المنطقة بالتالي صار لزاماً الحديث عن متابعة للأمر الخطير والبحث عن أنفاق وإثارة البلبلة لدى الجهة اللبنانية ويكشف المصدر لـ«البناء» عن أن الإعلان هذا مدروس جداً من قبل الإسرائيليين الذين يعرفون أن هذا لا يُعتبر اعتداء على حزب الله، طالما انه داخل الاراضي المحتلة، بالتالي يتوقعون مسبقاً أنه لا يرد فتتوضّح نياتهم بالخوف من اندلاع أي اشتباك مع لبنان. وهذا ما تلقاه حزب الله بوضوح كما أن التشكيك بصحة القدرة الاسرائيلية ينبع من استغراب ودهشة لدى أي متابع عسكري يطرح سؤالاً وحيداً وهو: لماذا لا تقوم «إسرائيل» بعملياتها وتنقض بشكل مفاجئ بدل التطبيل وإفشال العملية الأمنية؟ الأمر الذي تكرر في اشاعة وجود صواريخ حول المطار؟ يختم المصدر «بلا شك هذه البروباغندا هي أكثر ما يحتاج إليه نتنياهو المطوّق بمقاومة فلسطينية لا تتراجع وملفات فساد تلتف حول عنقه».

وعليه فإن «تسويق» الموقف او حادثة الأنفاق للرأي العام الإسرائيلي المربك بسبب علامات الضعف الأمني ونتنياهو الملاحق من الشرطة وملفات الفساد وتصدر الأخير عناوين الصحف الإسرائيلية الاولى هو ضروري لشراء بديل عن هذا الحدث ومَن أقدر من الجبهة الشمالية على إشغال الإسرائيليين..

من جهة اخرى تدرك «إسرائيل» أن لبنان الذي يعيش فترة حرجة بتشكيل حكومة متعثرة يعيش ضمن انقسام حول حزب الله تسعى لتعميقه عبر تصويره أداة التعطيل الاولى وجالب كل الأخطار وباختصار اعتبار حزب الله مصدر كل خطر على لبنان وتفاقم الوضع المالي فتتزايد الضغوط عليه وكأنه ينقص بعد أن يجلب حرباً إليهم.

البيت الابيض من جهته مشارك في دعم الرواية الإسرائيلية ليرسل رسائل مفادها أنه يقدر المأزق التي تعيشه «إسرائيل» فيثمر الموقف اللبناني ليهول فيه داخلياً وتصبح القضية الأولى لدى الرأي العام اللبناني اعتبار حزب الله الخطر الأكبر على البلاد.

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Major Psy-Op in Europe Exposed: UK Government Tramples on Values It Vowed to Protect

By Alex Gorka
Source

Those who have been saying that the West has turned Russia into a scapegoat to be blamed for each and every thing that goes wrong have been proved right. We have witnessed concocted stories invented to denigrate Moscow that have gone viral as directed by the secret services. The UK, the country that is spearheading the anti-Russian information campaign, offers a good example that illustrates how this is being done.

An online group of hackers known as Anonymous has just revealed covert UK activities in the EU. According to the documents released by that group, London is in the midst of a major program to interfere in the internal affairs of EU members, the US, and Canada. Anonymous threatens to release more information on the clandestine operations of the UK government, unless it agrees to remove the shroud of secrecy protecting those information-warfare efforts. On Nov. 24 Twitter deleted RT comments on the issue. The UK knows it has friends it can rely on in a crunch.

The Integrity Initiative is a London-based organization set up and funded by the government-friendly Institute for Statecraft, in cooperation with the Free University of Brussels (VUB) to wage information-warfare operations against Russia. Anonymous calls it a “large-scale information secret service.” It aims to “change attitudes in Russia itself” as well as the influence of Russian natives living abroad. The Integrity Initiative’s budget for the fiscal year ending on March 31, 2019 is estimated at £1.96 million ($2.51 million). The network has received grants from NATO, the US State Department, and Facebook.

The Initiative’s operations have been kept under wraps. Its activities are conducted by “clusters” of local politicians, journalists, military personnel, scientists, and academics involved in anti-Russian propaganda efforts. The list includes William Browder, a US-British businessman convicted in absentia in Russia for tax evasion.

The Integrity Initiative network has offices from which to conduct its covert operations in France, Germany, Italy, Greece, the Netherlands, Lithuania, Norway, Serbia, Spain, and Montenegro. Its plans to expand to the US, Canada, Eastern Europe, and the MENA region are already underway.

The Anonymous hackers mention Operation Moncloa that was launched in June in Spain to prevent Pedro Baños, a colonel known for his Russia-friendly views, from being appointed the new head of Spain’s influential national security agency.

It’s all part of a broader picture. In March, Prime Minister Theresa May promised to “defeat” Russia with a new cyber-warfare initiative titled the Fusion Doctrine. Back then, Ms. May told British intelligence services to use social media “to prevent the spread of misinformation.” In other words, she has pulled the military into this anti-Russian propaganda effort. Security sources have floated the idea that that the UK must harness “soft power” and “counter-propaganda” on social media networks. Is it possible to imagine any media remaining independent in a country where they’re part of a “soft power strategy” implemented by the government under the rallying cry of protecting national security?

This is the origin of so many fantasies about Russia and the imaginary threat it poses. The plan included an enhanced role for the BBC World Service to promote British “values” abroad, ensuring that the Ofcom shuts down media organizations that fail to meet “high British standards.” Only gullible people can believe that such “values” and “standards” exist. Russia has been used as a bogeyman to justify measures aimed at killing off the freedom of the media. Any story about Russia’s nefarious deeds spread by British news outlets should be taken with a grain of salt.

The UK government is facing some hard times. The Brexit deal with the EU is headed to parliament for approval. It’s impossible to predict whether the MPs will vote yes or no. Both outcomes threaten the very existence of the United Kingdom. The use of the “Russian threat” is seen as one way to keep the nation united and the media under control.

Keeping its activities out of the public eye, the government is doing exactly what it has so indignantly accused Russia of. The pot is calling the kettle black. As the freedom of the press is being suppressed and the media networks are following the government’s instructions about what information they should offer their readers, UK officials continue to brazenly deliver their pompous speeches about the need to protect those very values to which the government itself poses the greatest challenge. Anonymous is right — any responsible government must explain the intentions behind the Integrity Initiative, how exactly it is funded, and why its activities should be shielded from public view.

Facing Propaganda The dirty war on Syria مواجهة بروباغندا الحرب القذرة على سوريا

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Propaganda during World War I: An Illustrated Account

By Terje Meloy
Source

These stories are not unique cases from a remote war. The same methods are constantly rinsed and repeated, the mentality in our ruling elites is the same, and the risk of a major conflict is as great today as in 1914.

These examples concentrate mostly on British/American perception management and propaganda. First of all, because they are masters of the art, and secondly, as victors they still dominate the narrative.

Arthur Ponsonby and Falsehood in Wartime

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After the Great War came a huge backlash of disillusion and revulsion. Calmly analysed, most of what had been told in the war turned out to be lies and half-truths. «Falsehood in War-time, Containing an Assortment of Lies Circulated Throughout the Nations During the Great War» was the title of a book published in 1928. Written by Arthur, Ponsonby, it discussed 20 instances of lies in wartime.

The contents of the book can be summed up in the Ten Commandments of War Propaganda:

  1. We do not want war.
  2. The opposite party alone is guilty of war.
  3. The enemy is the face of the devil.
  4. We defend a noble cause, not our own interest.
  5. The enemy systematically commits cruelties; our mishaps are involuntary.
  6. The enemy uses forbidden weapons.
  7. We suffer small losses, those of the enemy are enormous.
  8. Artists and intellectuals back our cause.
  9. Our cause is sacred.
  10. All who doubt our propaganda, are traitors.

The Enemy Is the Face of the Devil

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The perception of German atrocities in World War 1 has had is up and downs during the decades.  They ‘Huns’ were indeed quite ruthless, and freely executed several thousand suspected franc-tireurs and hostages when they invaded Belgium and Northern France in 1914.

However, the theme of barbaric, nun-raping, baby-bayonetting Huns was so carried to excess by the Entente propaganda machine that there came a backlash in public opinion after the war. By the 1920s, the disillusionment with the war and its aftermath was so great that all of these stories were dismissed as atrocity propaganda, which again would backfire in 1939, when there was reluctance to believe stories of – this time real – massive German atrocities.

The same theme was used more recently, with the infamous tale of «Iraqis ripping babies from incubators in Kuwaiti hospitals», in the warm-up to the Gulf War in 1990. Before the US Congress, a young woman in tears testified how she as a nurse in Kuwait witnessed Iraqi soldiers ripping prematurely born babies out of their incubators, leaving them to die on the floor. The story was later repeated by an equally moved President George HW Bush.

The public later found out that the woman was in fact not a nurse, but the daughter of the Kuwaiti ambassador to Washington, and the story was concocted as part of the propaganda effort by the PR-Agency Hill & Knowlton.

Mussolini Changes His Mind — Italy Should Join the War

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Italy at first stayed neutral, then chose to join the Entente. This turned out to be a really bad decision, killing a generation of young men, and with not many gains to show for it in the peace treaties.

The decision was partially helped by subsidies from English and French intelligence to the Italian press. The Italian journalist Benito Mussolini (picture: in white coat, arrested during a scuffle with police in 1914) had a change of heart, and went from a leading socialist and war opponent to a fierce advocate of Italy joining the war.

According to a note written in November 1922 by the French secret services in Rome, Mussolini (who was described in another note from the same service as «an agent of the French Embassy in Rome») had in 1914 collected ten million francs «to support Italy’s war alongside the allied powers». In 1915, he was one of the founders the Fascist movement, which later took power in 1922.

The Difference Between Declared War Aims and Real Ones

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In August 1914, when an almost unanimous German parliament voted yes to war, it was presented to the German public as a defensive Schutzkrieg against conniving enemies. With the exception of one member, Karl Liebknecht, the entire 110-member delegation from the Social Democratic Party bowed to the war euphoria and voted yes to war loans.

The perception presented to the public during the first few years of fighting, was of a Germany fighting a defensive war for survival, not a scheme for imperial aggrandizement. But in reality, already in September 1914, in the first few weeks of the war, a secret plan for an extensive redrawing of Europe’s borders was prepared for Chancellor Bethmann-Hollweg, the Septemberprogramm (see map).

After the Brest-Litovsk separate peace with the Bolsheviks in 1917, the eastern part of these war aims were achieved, where Germany occupied or created puppet governments in Poland, Ukraine, the Caucasus and Baltic areas, and created a dependent state in Finland.

Although a victory, this led to great disillusionment in the German liberal-left, which so far had supported a war to preserve the country. Now he myth of a defensive war was exposed as a lie, and the treaty showed it to be a war for imperial expansion.

The Sinking of the Lusitania

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In May 1915 the British Government was in trouble. The European war was not going well. Instead of reacting to aggressive British blockades by begging for mercy, Germany was sinking more and more British ships with her U-boats.

The Lusitania was sunk by a German submarine on Friday May 7 1915, 12 miles off the coast of Ireland, killing 1198 people. The ship was running at two-thirds speed and in a straight line, rather than the recommended zigzag used to avoid torpedoes. The passengers were mostly US citizens (including millionaire Alfred Vanderbilt).

Her cargo consisted mostly of undeclared weapons and explosives, a fact finally confirmed in 1960, and which explained why she sank so fast. She was bound for the UK, sailing all alone, inexplicably without escort from the Royal Navy and right into a known U-boat hunting ground.

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No members of the press even considered asking why Lusitania had been steaming so slowly and in a straight line, or why the British Admiralty had chosen to withhold the usual naval escort.

The numerous travel warnings posted by the German government in US newspapers, warning people they traveled on British shipping into British waters at their peril, was left out of the narrative. The German explanation, that the Lusitania was a legitimate target because she carried armaments, was dismissed out of hand.

And totally forgotten was the aggressive policy of starving Germany to its knees that had prompted the U-boat campaign in the first place. After the war began in 1914, Britain immediately began a naval blockade of Germany. Since even food was classified as “contraband,” the Germans had to ration food. By all estimates, several hundred thousand people ultimately died of starvation due to the blockade.

The sinking of the Lusitania was one of the main causes that brought the United States into the war, saving the war for the British.

An Inconvenient Peace Offer: “What Does He Want to Butt In for?”

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In July 1915, Pope Benedict XV published the apostolic exhortation «To the Peoples Now at War and to Their Rulers.» Two years later, in 1917, this became The seven-point plan, a peace note presented to the warring parties. It was based on a peace linked to justice rather than military conquest, cessation of hostilities, a reduction of armaments, a guaranteed freedom of the seas, international arbitration, and Belgium restored to independence and guaranteed «against any power whatsoever.» (But it tacitly implied that Germany would gain some territory in the east).

The initiative failed: Although the Central Powers (Germany, Austria-Hungary) were positive to the mediation after three years of exhausting war, no one on the Entente side showed any interest. (The collapse of the Russian imperial government a few months later reduced the German willingness to negotiate.) Britain did not even show the Holy See the common courtesy of a proper reply. The French and Italian replies were hostile, and the rejection on behalf of the alliance was made by president Woodrow Wilson of the United States, who had initially remarked of the pope’s proposal: “What does he want to butt in for?»

The decision to reject any proposal from the Vatican was already decided in 1915. The threat was that a peace mediation from someone like the Pope might create so much pressure from a war-weary populace that it might just gather enough momentum to force the powers to accept.

The secret Treaty of London (1915), committing Italy to the Entente (Britain, France and Russia) contained a clause, article 15, where Italy is given carte blanche to do whatever is deemed necessary to silence the Church: «France, Great Britain and Russia shall support such opposition as Italy may make to any proposal in the direction of introducing a representative of the Holy See in any peace negotiations or negotiations for the settlement of questions raised by the present war» .

From Women’s Liberation to a Tool for the State

articles-a-womans-place-ww1-impact-of-war-2-dt-emmeline-pankhurst.jpgEmmeline Pankhurst addressing a pro-war rally in 1914

There is nothing new about liberal social reformers falling into lockstep when the country goes to war.

British Emmeline Pankhurst was the most prominent member in the Women’s Suffrage movement. She founded the Women’s Social and Political Union (WSPU) in 1902. After a remarkable and highly radical campaign for women’s rights, including hunger strikes, arson and window smashings, the group changed from a reformist program to a hard right reactionary nationalism as soon as the war broke out.

In 1914-15, bands of women roamed the cities of England handing out white feathers of cowardice to men wearing civilian clothes. The ‘White Feather Brigade’ was established by admiral Charles Fitzgerald, a war hawk who wished to see Britain institute mandatory military service. The campaign spread through the country with astonishing rapidity.

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The highly successful White Feather campaign, shaming British men to enlist.

Not unconnected, the WSPU successfully carried out secret negotiations with the government, and on the 10th August 1914, the government announced it was releasing all suffragettes from prison. After receiving a £2,000 grant from the government, the WSPU organised a pro-war demonstration in London. Members carried banners with slogans such as «We Demand the Right to Serve» and «Let None Be Kaiser’s Cat’s Paws».

Pankhurst founded the Women’s Party in 1917. Excerpts from the program:

(1) A fight to the finish with Germany.

(2) More vigorous war measures to include drastic food rationing, more communal kitchens to reduce waste, and the closing down of nonessential industries to release labour for work on the land and in the factories.

(3) A clean sweep of all officials of enemy blood or connections from Government departments. Peace terms to include the dismemberment of the Hapsburg Empire.

(8) Irish Home Rule to be denied.

In the Suffrage Movement’s defense, many members chose a different and more honorable stance, like her daughter Sylvia Pankhurst. In 1915, Sylvia gave her enthusiastic support to the International Women’s Peace Congress, and she later became a leading international voice in the resistance to Mussolini’s attack on Ethiopia.

Edith Cavell – Nurse (And a Hundred Years Later, a Spy After All)

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Few incidents created bigger outrage in the First World War than when the British nurse Edith Cavellwas executed by firing squad for helping Allied soldiers escape occupied Belgium. In the trial, she admitted to leading a people smuggling network.

But the German charges also claimed that Cavell was a spy, sending sensitive intelligence through the same network, a claim which was strongly denied by both Cavell and the British government.

The government’s insistence on her innocence was taken as implicitly true in Britain, and she became a symbol for victims of Hunnic habitual cruelty. This perception also had great impact on public opinion in the still neutral United States. The implicit presumption of innocence lingered for a many years, and was a useful propaganda tool for many decades.

In a BBC-program in 2015, a hundred years after Cavell’s death, Stella Rimington, former head of the MI5, revealed that she had discovered documents in Belgian archives indicating that Cavell was in fact a spy.

This is of course a limited hangout. MI5 would have known this all along, being Cavell’s boss, but naturally chose to keep quiet about it, since the idea of her innocence was so convenient.

Rimington said her evidence showed «that the Cavell organisation was a two-pronged affair» and that espionage was the other part of its clandestine mission.

The documents included an account by Herman Capiau, a young Belgian mining engineer who had brought the first British soldiers to Cavell in 1914 and was an important member of her network.

He wrote: «Whenever it was possible to send interesting intelligence on military operations, this information was forwarded to the English intelligence service punctually and rapidly.»

Capiau referred to information about a German trench system, the location of munitions dumps and the whereabouts of aircraft.

Since she was in fact guilty, it would make her case similar to the famous spy Mata Hari, who was unceremoniously executed by the French in 1917, without any international outcry. Of course, Cavell’s case is worse, since she used a humanitarian cover for her activities, putting all medical personnel under suspicion.

Most of Our Opinions Are Formed by Men We Have Never Heard of

After the United States joined the war in 1917, president Wilson founded a government agency, The Committee on Public Information, to drum up support in public opinion for the US Crusade for Freedom©.

A young man, Edward Bernays,  started working for it, and quickly learned his trade there. He later became known as «the father of public relations», and a pioneer in the modern PR-industry, where he, among other things, arranged the media part of the CIA-regime change operation in Guatemala in 1954. The full quote from him is as follows:

«The conscious and intelligent manipulation of the organized habits and opinions of the masses is an important element in democratic society. Those who manipulate this unseen mechanism of society constitute an invisible government which is the true ruling power of our country. We are governed, our minds are molded, our tastes formed, our ideas suggested, largely by men we have never heard of.»

The Invasion of 1910 — A Book Commissioned to Tell the Public Who the Next Enemy Is

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Describing an imagined German invasion of England, the book The Invasion of 1910 was written by William le Queux on commission from the press magnate Lord Northcliffe and serialized in his newspaper the Daily Mail in 1906. After the detente with France and friendlier relations with Russia, British elites circles agreed on who the next likely enemy would be. But the British public still wasn’t ‘with the program’, and a large campaign was started to prepare them mentally. In the years 1906-1914, a torrent of books and articles on the terrible Hun menace poured out from a number of authors, including Arthur Conan Doyle.

Bits by Bits a War Memorial Day Gets a New Meaning

14027266043_a3a49cb221_z.jpgCadets march in the 2014 ANZAC day parade (Picture: Flickr/Chris Phutully)

World War 1 was a bloody affair for the Commonwealth countries. Most Australian country towns or even small villages have a cenotaph or monument with a shockingly long list of local men lost in WW1. ANZAC-day  (on 25th of April, the anniversary of the Anglo-French campaign to conquer Gallipoli and the Dardanelles, where Australia played a part) was decided as a holiday in 1921 to commemorate these war dead, in a rather sombre spirit. The holiday and ceremony was a quiet affair for most of last century, apart from the usual right-wing forces trying to capitalize on it. It reached it’s nadir in the late 1970s, after the Vietnam war.

A marked change started in the 1990s, with a concerted and very well funded campaign from the government to militarize Australian history. Now the ceremonies are huge, military-political events, full of pathos, cant and sentimentality.  By spending huge sums to connect the public idea of Australianness to a glorification of its military glory, it seems Australian participation, like in 1914 by choice, in the next bloody world war is inevitable – nothing learned Down Under.

Neutral Countries Are the Winners

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This Swiss cartoon by Karl Czerpien, is captioned «The wooing of the Neutrals», where orators from the warring countries are trying to entice neutrals to join them. The different alliances spent large efforts to tangle neutral countries into their imperialistic intrigues (see the case of Italy above). For smaller neutral countries, war between the great powers is always a dangerous time, but by trying to stay neutral, they are rather better off than by joining an alliance. A lesson for our time, when small countries in Europe seem very eager to get the honor of being the battlefield in the next war.

1924 — The Pacifist Ernst Friedrich Shows the Real Faces of War

In 1924, in the book War against War, the German anti-war activist Ernst Friedrich breaks a taboo in war reporting, by showing real war injuries. Such horrific pictures were – and still are – generally very rarely shown in war reporting, both in the corporate media and in anti-war literature.

This unwillingness contributes, intentionally or just because the pictures are too shocking to handle, to an almost idealized image of war, where our dead are always beautifully serene and the wounded well wrapped in bandages.

The Meaning of a Multipolar World

by Eric Zuesse for The Saker BlogThe Meaning of a Multipolar World

Right now, we live in a monopolar world. Here is how U.S. President Barack Obama proudly, even imperially, described it when delivering the Commencement address to America’s future generals, at West Point Military Academy, on 28 May 2014:

The United States is and remains the one indispensable nation. [Every other nation is therefore ‘dispensable’; we therefore now have “Amerika, Amerika über alles, über alles in der Welt”.] That has been true for the century passed and it will be true for the century to come. … America must always lead on the world stage. If we don’t, no one else will. … Russia’s aggression toward former Soviet states unnerves capitals in Europe, while China’s economic rise and military reach worries its neighbors. From Brazil to India, rising middle classes compete with us. [He was here telling these future U.S. military leaders that they are to fight for the U.S. aristocracy, to help them defeat any nation that resists.] … In Ukraine, Russia’s recent actions recall the days when Soviet tanks rolled into Eastern Europe. But this isn’t the Cold War. Our ability to shape world opinion helped isolate Russia right away. [He was proud of the U.S. Government’s effectiveness at propaganda, just as Hitler was proud of the German Government’s propaganda-effectiveness under Joseph Goebbels.] Because of American leadership, the world immediately condemned Russian actions; Europe and the G7 joined us to impose sanctions; NATO reinforced our commitment to Eastern European allies; the IMF is helping to stabilize Ukraine’s economy; OSCE monitors brought the eyes of the world to unstable parts of Ukraine.

Actually, his — Obama’s — regime, had conquered Ukraine in February 2014 by a very bloody coup, and installed a racist-fascist anti-Russian Government there next door to Russia, a stooge-regime to this day, which instituted a racial-cleansing campaign to eliminate enough pro-Russia voters so as to be able to hold onto power there. It has destroyed Ukraine and so alienated the regions of Ukraine that had voted more than 75% for the democratically elected Ukrainian President whom Obama overthrew, so that those pro-Russia regions quit Ukraine. What remains of Ukraine after the U.S. conquest is a nazi mess and a destroyed nation in hock to Western taxpayers and banks.

Furthermore, Obama insisted upon (to use Bush’s term about Saddam Hussein) “regime-change” in Syria. Twice in one day the Secretary General of the U.N. asserted that only the Syrian people have any right to do that, no outside nation has any right to impose it. Obama ignored him and kept on trying. Obama actually protected Al Qaeda’s Syrian affiliate against bombing by Syria’s Government and by Syria’s ally Russia, while the U.S. bombed Syria’s army, which was trying to prevent those jihadists from overthrowing the Government. Obama bombed Libya in order to “regime-change” Muammar Gaddafi, and he bombed Syria in order to “regime-change” Bashar al-Assad; and, so, while the “U.S. Drops Bombs; EU Gets Refugees & Blame. This Is Insane.” And Obama’s successor Trump continues Obama’s policies in this regard. And, of course, the U.S. and its ally UK invaded Iraq in 2003, likewise on the basis of lies to the effect that Iraq was the aggressor. (Even Germany called Poland the aggressor when invading Poland in 1939.)

No other nation regularly invades other nations that never had invaded it. This is international aggression. It is the international crime of “War of Aggression”; and the only nations which do it nowadays are America and its allies, such as the Sauds, Israel, France, and UK, which often join in America’s aggressions (or, in the case of the Sauds’ invasion of Yemen, the ally initiates an invasion, which the U.S. then joins). America’s generals are taught this aggression, and not only by Obama. Ever since at least George W. Bush, it has been solid U.S. policy. (Bush even kicked out the U.N.’s weapons-inspectors, so as to bomb Iraq in 2003.)

In other words: a mono-polar world is a world in which one nation stands above international law, and that nation’s participation in an invasion immunizes also each of its allies who join in the invasion, protecting it too from prosecution, so that a mono-polar world is one in which the United Nations can’t even possibly impose international law impartially, but can impose it only against nations that aren’t allied with the mono-polar power, which in this case is the United States. Furthermore, because the U.S. regime reigns supreme over the entire world, as it does, any nations — such as Russia, China, Syria, Iran, North Korea, Venezuela, Nicaragua, Cuba, and Ecuador — that the U.S. regime (which has itself been scientifically proven to be a dictatorship) chooses to treat as an enemy, is especially disadvantaged internationally. Russia and China, however, are among the five permanent members of the U.N. Security Council and therefore possess a degree of international protection that America’s other chosen enemies do not. And the people who choose which nations to identify as America’s ‘enemies’ are America’s super-rich and not the entire American population, because the U.S. Government is controlled by the super-rich and not by the public.

So, that’s the existing mono-polar world: it is a world that’s controlled by one nation, and this one nation is, in turn, controlled by its aristocracy, its super-rich.

If one of the five permanent members of the Security Council would table at the U.N. a proposal to eliminate the immunity that the U.S. regime has, from investigation and prosecution for any future War of Aggression that it might perpetrate, then, of course, the U.S. and any of its allies on the Security Council would veto that, but if the proposing nation would then constantly call to the international public’s attention that the U.S. and its allies had blocked passage of such a crucially needed “procedure to amend the UN charter”, and that this fact means that the U.S. and its allies constitute fascist regimes as was understood and applied against Germany’s fascist regime, at the Nuremberg Tribunal in 1945, then possibly some members of the U.S.-led gang (the NATO portion of it, at least) would quit that gang, and the U.S. global dictatorship might end, so that there would then become a multi-polar world, in which democracy could actually thrive.

Democracy can only shrivel in a mono-polar world, because all other nations then are simply vassal nations, which accept Obama’s often-repeated dictum that all other nations are “dispensable” and that only the U.S. is not. Even the UK would actually gain in freedom, and in democracy, by breaking away from the U.S., because it would no longer be under the U.S. thumb — the thumb of the global aggressor-nation.

Only one global poll has ever been taken of the question “Which country do you think is the greatest threat to peace in the world today?” and it found that, overwhelmingly, by a three-to-one ratio above the second-most-often named country, the United States was identified as being precisely that, the top threat to world-peace. But then, a few years later, another (though less-comprehensive) poll was taken on a similar question, and it produced similar results. Apparently, despite the effectiveness of America’s propagandists, people in other lands recognize quite well that today’s America is a more successful and longer-reigning version of Hitler’s Germany. Although modern America’s propaganda-operation is far more sophisticated than Nazi Germany’s was, it’s not entirely successful. America’s invasions are now too common, all based on lies, just like Hitler’s were.

On November 9th, Russian Television headlined “‘Very insulting’: Trump bashes Macron’s idea of European army for protection from Russia, China & US” and reported that “US President Donald Trump has unloaded on his French counterpart Emmanuel Macron, calling the French president’s idea of a ‘real European army,’ independent from Washington, an insult.” On the one hand, Trump constantly criticizes France and other European nations for allegedly not paying enough for America’s NATO military alliance, but he now is denigrating France for proposing to other NATO members a decreasing reliance upon NATO, and increasing reliance, instead, upon the Permanent Structured Cooperation (or PESCO) European military alliance, which was begun on 11 December 2017, and which currently has “25 EU Member States participating: Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Croatia, Cyprus, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Ireland, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovenia, Slovakia, Spain and Sweden.” Those are the European nations that are now on the path to eventually quitting NATO.

Once NATO is ended, the U.S. regime will find far more difficult any invasions such as of Iraq 2003, Libya 2011, Syria 2012-, Yemen 2016-, and maybe even such as America’s bloody coup that overthrew the democratically elected Government of Ukraine and installed a racist-fascist or nazi anti-Russian regime there in 2014. All of these U.S. invasions (and coup) brought to Europe millions of refugees and enormously increased burdens upon European taxpayers. Plus, America’s economic sanctions against both Russia and Iran have hurt European companies (and the U.S. does almost no business with either country, so is immune to that, also). Consequently, today’s America is clearly Europe’s actual main enemy. The continuation of NATO is actually toxic to the peoples of Europe. Communism and the Soviet Union and its NATO-mirroring Warsaw Pact military alliance, all ended peacefully in 1991, but the U.S. regime has secretly continued the Cold War, now against Russia, and is increasingly focusing its “regime-change” propaganda against Russia’s popular democratic leader, Vladimir Putin, even though this U.S. aggression against Russia could mean a world-annihilating nuclear war.

On November 11th, RT bannered “‘Good for multipolar world’: Putin positive on Macron’s ‘European army’ plan bashed by Trump (VIDEO)”, and opened:

Europe’s desire to create its own army and stop relying on Washington for defense is not only understandable, but would be “positive” for the multipolar world, Vladimir Putin said days after Donald Trump ripped into it.

Europe is … a powerful economic union and it is only natural that they want to be independent and … sovereign in the field of defense and security,” Putin told RT in Paris where world leader gathered to mark the centenary of the end of WWI.

He also described the potential creation of a European army “a positive process,” adding that it would “strengthen the multipolar world.” The Russian leader even expressed his support to French President Emmanuel Macron, who recently championed this idea by saying that Russia’s stance on the issue “is aligned with that of France” to some extent.

Macron recently revived the ambitious plans of creating a combined EU military force by saying that it is essential for the security of Europe. He also said that the EU must become independent from its key ally on the other side of the Atlantic, provoking an angry reaction from Washington.

Once NATO has shrunk to include only the pro-aggression and outright nazi European nations, such as Ukraine(after the U.S. gang accepts Ukraine into NATO, as it almost certainly then would do), the EU will have a degree of freedom and of democracy that it can only dream of today, and there will then be a multi-polar world, in which the leaders of the U.S. will no longer enjoy the type of immunity from investigation and possible prosecution, for their invasions, that they do today. The result of this will, however, be catastrophic for the top 100 U.S. ‘defense’ contractors, such as Lockheed Martin, General Dynamics, and Raytheon, because then all of those firms’ foreign sales except to the Sauds, Israel and a few other feudal and fascist regimes, will greatly decline. Donald Trump is doing everything he can to keep the Sauds to the agreements he reached with them back in 2017 to buy $404 billion of U.S. weaonry over the following 10 years.  If, in addition, those firms lose some of their European sales, then the U.S. economic boom thus far in Trump’s Presidency will be seriously endangered. So, the U.S. regime, which is run by the owners of its ‘defense’-contractors, will do all it can to prevent this from happening.

—————

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.

 

‘Cost-Push’ Narrative Formation in the Trump Era

October 31, 2018

‘Cost-Push’ Narrative Formation in the Trump Era

In his 1928 landmark book Propaganda, public relations pioneer and Goebbelsian trailblazer Eddie Bernays offered what amounts to a disingenuous assertion at best:

“It is important that any effort to influence or effect the American public that is not in the public interest be killed by the light of pitiless publicity and analysis.”

Immediately, the statement begs two questions:

  • What if the American public decides at the ballot box that what passes for the prevailing public interest (really a manufactured imposition) runs counter to its own version of said interest?
  • Who orchestrates the “pitiless publicity” aimed at killing competing visions of the “public interest” and by what authority do they undertake this mission?

Bernays references the ‘who’ elsewhere, albeit vaguely as, “…invisible rulers who control the destinies of millions… and shrewd persons operating behind the scenes.”

Conceivably a tug of war could ensue between two competing visions of the public interest; one vision expressed at the ballot box in the manner of direct democracy and the other emanating top-down from managed democracy’s “invisible rulers”.

For Bernays such a conflict would not represent an intractable impasse so much as a cue for redoubling the, “conscious and intelligent manipulation of the organized habits and opinions of the masses”. After all, only intensified propagandizing efforts can correct the People’s ill-informed sense of the public interest. Undemocratic manipulation is, “an important element in democratic society” under Bernays’ weirdly circular formulation.

Of course self-determination is neither a path to infallibility nor a vaccine against public policy blunders. Direct Democracy merely makes the People the masters of their own fate, which is equally to say the captains of their own errors.

Bernays would have been better to say manipulation is a vital facet of a smoothly running Republic or Oligarchy, not so much a Democracy. His paternalistic subtext clearly reflects the former. Indeed another name for Managed Democracy is Republicanism (not to be confused with the political party of the same name).

A rough but effective analogy can be drawn from what serve normally as macroeconomic terms used to describe two varieties of inflation: Cost-Push and Demand-Pull. For an explanation of the traditional economic context of the terms, see here.

Applied to political narrative formation, Push is the bottom-up, propulsive force of the Will of the People. While Pull is the manipulative, diversionary desires of the Elite. Push is hard knocks and demonstrable scrapes. Pull is consciously engineered wishfulness harnessed to oligarchic solipsism, Empire objectives and atrophying noblesse oblige.

Popular consent should be organically derived and not subject to extrinsic manufacturing at all. Nor should its germination process be invaded by an externally fashioned agenda. The People should be the authors of their own consciousness. That’s the ideal anyway.

The Culture Industry’s mandate is steeped, from the outset, in inauthenticity and misdirection; or, as Theodor Adorno insisted, structurally inescapable insincerity. Through the endless propagation of false consciousness, Media is charged with convincing the People that the Pull is actually the Push. Sustaining this inversion has become a difficult task.

The Pull techniques are many and varied. Here are but a few:

The last chart addresses Russophobia. Anyone who’s walked past an American TV over the last two years can attest to a media obsession bordering on the manic; an intensity not shared by (nor successfully seeded within) the American public as evidenced by a July 2018 Gallup poll showing concern about Russia to be immeasurably unimportant (the issue garnered an * meaning less than 1%).

Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein fed the sui generis racialist fires when he referred with casual malice to The Russians (wink-wink-nudge-nudge) in his February 16th indictment press conference for Concord Management officials who happened to be Russian nationals with no discernible state actor affiliation.

The farcical social media trolling charges relate to “spread[ing] distrust towards the candidates and the political system in general”, as if the American populace wasn’t already immersed in boatloads of domestically-inspired skepticism. Chances are slim the politically-motivated indictments (announced on a Friday in part to the get the Parkland, Florida shootings off the front page) will ever come to trial despite Concord’s heroic efforts to have their day in court (see 3:48 here).

 

Surely it surprises no one that Putin is simply too busy to plot subterfuge at every table of every Russian boardroom engaged in Stateside business. Attempting to dampen Western media’s impression of his fearsome omniscience, the Russian President had this to say at the Jul 16, 2018 Summit Joint Press Conference:

Today’s Russophobic dog whistles recall John Maynard Keynes’ 1932 assertion that Bolshevism sprang from, “some beastliness in the Russian nature”. Far from dispelling these beastly stereotypes, CNN reinforces them nightly for the ‘higher dual purpose’ of de-legitimizing the Trump Presidency and positioning Russia as the Military Industrial Complex’ Enemy of Requisite Budgetary Scale.

Attorney Alan Dershowitz has routinely decried the ACLU’s MIA status throughout the Trump Russia witch-hunt. The same can be said of the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) whose charter states: “We fight anti-Semitism and all forms of hate.” We’re familiar with battles waged on behalf of the former, less so the latter. Here’s an opportune chance to engage on behalf of another besieged group.

Russian-Americans comprise 3.13 million people, a sizable population by any metric. Surely Russophobia (a dark retread of Nazism’s Anti-Slavism) warrants urgent attention. Blessed be the stoic forbearance of our Russian neighbors. One hopes it is a circumspection that will continue to go unpunished, though the Japanese and German internment camps that dotted WW2 America hardly inspire confidence.

Since at least Hillary Clinton’s Putin = Hitler equivalence-setting, the public consciousness has been in the grips of determined preparatory spadework for war with Russia. Frankly, the People are to be applauded for enduring the last two years of cognitive carpet-bombing with their disinterest and skepticism intact. Alas this failed impartation will not derail WW3. Rather it will cause the war to break out preemptively without the embedded pretext of settled consent. What cannot be consented to will occur nonetheless, leaving ‘new realities’ to compel the appropriate consent post-factum, that is, in a manner analogous to journalist Ron Suskind’s recounting of a 2004 quote attributed to Karl Rove:

“We’re an empire now, and when we act, we create our own reality. And while you’re studying that reality—judiciously, as you will—we’ll act again, creating other new realities, which you can study too, and that’s how things will sort out. We’re history’s actors…and you, all of you, will be left to just study what we do.”

As we see in Syria and elsewhere this authorial prerogative is increasingly being shared by Russia in either a nascent reemergence of bipolarity or an interim way-station towards a multi-polar actor ensemble.

Another Pull variant is, as Nancy Pelosi so helpfully anatomized for us, the wrap-up smear. This is the technique of creating a false set of facts (the smear), “merchandising” the false fact pattern to the Media, then wrapping the smeared individual in the ensuing tar-and-feathery media glare until the former stops beating his or her spouse lately.

Of course the ensnared victim is obliged to continually reference the false facts if only to mount a self-defense. Perversely, righteous denial further reinforces the falsehoods through repetition. There is, as they say, no such thing as bad publicity if the purpose is to keep one’s name front-and-center, which in the case of a wrap-up smear, it most surely isn’t.

Again, the purpose is to pull the media consumer towards a desired narrative based on falsity and distortion. The news-maker advantages his or her podium to initiate news that only becomes news by virtue of a bully pulpit (one of the top-down trappings of power), and not by the inherent truth-value of ‘facts-on-the-ground’. Putin and Trump, the world’s most potent nationalists, are no strangers to being wrapped in deceptive, pejorative garb.

A crucial point to note is that both leaders enjoy the shared contempt of the globalists.  Putin’s favorability among Americans has been engineered down to 16%, 9% among collusion-besotted Democrats. Thus, while Russia is not a front-burner issue in US households, the Mackinder-MIC catastrophe of a US-Russia rapprochement is rendered all but verboten by these figures as detente would confirm extortioned compromise.

Viewed in this perma-war context, the establishment palpitations caused by Trump ‘being left alone’ with fellow loose cannon Putin make perfect, twisted sense. Suppose a powerful personal chemistry had erupted into a sudden outbreak of peaceful intentions between the two unchaperoned leaders? The prospects for WW3 might have lain in shards. Summit? What Summit? It’s practically been erased from the annals of geopolitics as was the proposed follow-on Summit in Washington. All that can be hoped for are dashed-off corridor meetings at future co-attended events.

Alas, this shell-game is breaking down in the Trump Era. Fake News is a more tactile, street-level term for false consciousness propagation. There’s little doubt Trump has a gift for branding.

The President is routinely accused of thinking in 220-character Twitter bytes, giving way to charges of truncated intelligence. There may be other reasons to doubt his intelligence. With Twitter, he is fulfilling the greater need of bypassing the Media filter for a communication path more consistent with the needs of direct democracy. The truncation is a non-rescindable feature of the Twitter platform itself.

The current Push-Pull narrative divergence –which has the opinion-shapers in conniptions– is on stark display in the recent Gallup vs. Media Research Center numbers (graphic at the bottom of this post). Surely 92% negative coverage evidences Bernay’s “pitiless publicity”.

Even after the desperate steps taken to shut down alt-media (and yes, desperate is the term), the divergence grows. The Media responds with ever more dislocating and lurid material. Bombs –or at least clocks resembling bombs– appear on Democrats’ doorsteps with eerie synchronicity.

A recursive self-consciousness has now infiltrated the system contributing further noise, not unlike how the pings of a too-high-octane fuel destroy the kayfabe experience (instilled by the car salesman) of a frictionless magic carpet-ride. The clunky mechanics of the process overwhelm the message itself.

The collective wisdom of the People has fully determined their passenger status in a vehicle driven by a malevolent chauffeur. Managed Democracy will be hard-pressed to recover their prior innocence.

The divergence also implodes the notion that the media is in any way reflective of the population it claims to derive its news from. Clearly the reportage has become prescriptive which is to say, not reportage at all. We’re not happy with the facts where we find them. Thus we will be moving them over here instead, beneath the canopy of our desired narrative.

The breakdown of the Pull hasn’t stopped the usual talking heads from pushing endlessly on strings deemed mission-critical by their managers. Like deer trapped in the klieg lights of an indiscernible new reality, they fumble along, in thrall to a dark comedy that takes its cues from absurd representations of untenable narratives.

Though opinions on Trump differ sharply, few can dispute his disruptive role in fomenting managed democracy’s narrative crisis, and for putting back onto its heels a myth-making prowess whose influence up until now had been considered unassailable.

Why might Trump be an authentic change agent, albeit one with a high probability of derailment or self-betrayal? Because the bifurcating narratives cannot be denied. If the divergence is real, the systemic stress must be equally real. Why, one has to ask, does the corporate press protesteth so much? Therein lies a telling litmus.

There’s a tendency to forget Trump’s formal political career is less than two years old and that he contends against a hostile, entrenched security-media complex seventy years in the making. Whether he is already capitulating to insuperable neoconservative power centers or is engaging in tactical ducks-and-feints cannot be confirmed either way. His post-midterm demeanor, and inevitable staffing changes, will reveal much. A verdict today is premature.

For the moment, we applaud small mercies and encouraging signs…

A breakaway bloc now exists in America along the lines of the red pill, blue pill demarcation. Many have been ‘dispelled’. Let us hope more can Push away from the master’s table forever.

 

Two Stories from the Propaganda War

By Philip M. Giraldi
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Two recent stories about Russians have demonstrated how the news is selected and manipulated in the United States. The first is about Maria Butina, who apparently sought to overthrow American democracy, such as it is, by obtaining a life membership in the National Rifle Association. Maria, a graduate student at American University, is now in detention in a federal prison, having been charged with collusion and failure to register as an agent of the Russian Federation. She has been in prison since July, for most of the time in solitary confinement, and has not been granted bail because, as a Russian citizen, she is considered to be a “flight risk.”

Maria, who has pleaded not guilty to all charges, is now seeking donations to help pay for her legal defense as the Russian government renews demands that she be released from jail or be tried on whatever charges the Justice Department can come up with, but her release is unlikely as she is really a political prisoner.

The media has been silent about Maria Butina because the case against her is falling apart. In early September prosecutors admitted that they had misunderstood text messages used to support claims that she had offered to trade sex for access to information. Demands that she consequently be released from prison were, however, rejected. Her lawyer observed that “The impact of this inflammatory allegation, which painted Ms. Butina as some type of Kremlin-trained seductress, or spy-novel honeypot character, trading sex for access and power, cannot be overstated.”

In an attempt to make the Butina embarrassment disappear from the news, the Justice Department has proposed an unprecedented gag order to prevent her attorney from appearing in the media in a way that could prejudice a jury should her case eventually come to trial. Currently there is no court date and Maria remains in jail indefinitely, but the press could care less – she is just one more Russiagate casualty in an ongoing saga that has long since passed her by.

Given the Maria Butina story and the hysteria over all things Russian it was perhaps inevitable that the tale of Kremlin interference in American elections would be resurrected and repeated. Federal prosecutors are now reporting that another Russian woman has illegally conspired with others to “defraud the United States” and interfere with the U.S. political system, to include plans for conducting “information warfare” to subvert the upcoming 2018 midterm elections.

The complaint was filed on October 19th at a federal court in Virginia which handles most national security cases. According to the court documents, Elena Alekseevna Khusyainova, a 44-year-old resident of St. Petersburg in Russia, has worked as the head accountant for “Project Lakhta,” a Russian influence operation backed by an oligarch close to President Vladi­mir Putin. According to the Justice Department, the operation “spread misinformation about US political issues including immigration, gun control, the Confederate flag, and protests by NFL players. It also used events including the Las Vegas mass shooting, and the far-Right rally in Charlottesville, to spread discord.”

Khusyainova, who is not likely to be extradited to the United States for trial, allegedly purchased advertising in social networks and also supported dissident groups. The accusation of the American authorities emphasizes the connection between Khusyainova and St. Petersburg businessman Yevgeny Prigozhin, who was previously identified by the media as the owner of a ‘Troll Factory’ in St. Petersburg. In the U.S., several charges have already been brought against him and his staff, including interfering in the presidential elections in 2016.

The Maria Butina story reveals how there is a fundamental flaw in the justice system in the United States. When someone is found guilty by the media there is no way to right the wrong when the story shifts and starts to break down. The New York Times or Washington Post is unlikely to leap to the defense of the accused. Maria Butina has been raked over the coals in stories that were partly true but mostly false in terms of any criminal intent. She is still waiting for justice and will likely be doing so for some time.

The case of Elena Khusyainova is Maria Butina redux, only even more idiotic. No actual evidence is presented in the indictment and since Elena is in Russia and not likely to visit the United States, the entire affair is a bit of theater intended to heighten hysteria about the U.S. midterm elections. Is the U.S. electoral system really so fragile and what did Elena actually seek to do? The Justice Department is silent on the issue beyond vague accusations about trolling on the internet by Russians. One wonders who in the federal government ordered the investigation and signed off on the indictment.

Both Maria and Elena are victims of a politicized miscarriage of justice. Maria Butina should be released from prison now and allowed to pay her fine for being an unregistered agent before leaving the country. There is no justification for holding her in prison. And the indictment of Elena Khusyainova is not worth the paper it is written on. It should be torn up and thrown away.

21ST CENTURY HOAX TO PRESENT NEW FILM ABOUT CHEMICAL WEAPONS; WHITE HELMETS SELF-DESTRUCT ON POISON GAS THEY WERE CARRYING; BRANDON’S PROFOUND STUDY OF THE PSYOPS MEDIA WAR ON SYRIA

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21ST CENTURY HOAX PRESENTS A CINEMATIC ACHIEVEMENT OF THE FIRST MAGNITUDE A FILM PRODUCED BY ACCLAIMED SCHLOCKMEISTER GEORGE LOONEY IN ASSOCIATION WITH HER MAJESTY’S SECRET SERVICE AND THE CENTRAL SPOOKS OF MCLEAN, VIRGINIA THEDIRECTION GENERAL DE LA SECURITE INFERIEURE MOSSAD KHAZARIAN-SCHMALTZ PRODUCTIONS AND MIT

“HONEY, I LEFT THE SARIN IN A WHITE HELMET!!!”©

STARRING:  Amal Looney as “Kitten”, Usama Al-‘Absi Al-Waahidi as “The Mixer”, Muhammad ‘Alloosh as “King Rat”, Avigdor Liebermann as “Uncle Judas” and Benjamin Mileikowski as “Benjamin Netanyahu”, Theresa May as “Slag Booty”, Angela Merkel as “Die Schlampe”.  DIRECTOR: James Le Mesurier, SCREENPLAY: Bandar bin Sultan  MUSIC:  Alfred E. Newman conducting the London Philharmonic Orchestra LYRICS: Al-Jazeera TV,  EDITING: MSM Productions and Chris Wallace PRODUCER:  George Looney ASSOCIATE PRODUCER:  Robert Ford, SPECIAL EFFECTS: Industrial Blight and Magic, CINEMATOGRAPHY: Igor Abdo of the BBC,  FILMED ON LOCATION IN: Shepperton Studios, Warner Brothers in Burbank, CA, the British RAF Base in Akrotiri and Jisr Al-Shughoor, Syria, MAKE-UP:  Danny the Syrian SOUND: A cast of a thousand children crying after being sprayed pitilessly with garden hoses

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THE CRITICS ARE RAVING!!:

“I’ve never seen anything like it.  The dead children are really dead or they are the best actors I’ve ever seen.  Each frame seems it was directed from a real script.  But, one of the kids got up and started playing.  I just don’t get it.”  Roger Filbert, Chicago Sun Times

“The cameo scenes are worth the money.  Anderson Cooper’s appearance was uplifting. Using John McCain’s cadaver was a brilliant master stroke.” Vincent Bambi, Los Angeles Times

“Those White Helmets are real show-stoppers.  I thought the scene where they practiced a rescue five times was really precious.  The make-up was fantastic.  The laughter was infectious.  The hosing down of the children with chlorine was especially poignant.”  Pauline Snail, The New Yorker

“You gotta hand it to George Looney.  When it comes to intricate deception, special effects and outright lying, nobody can match his talent.”  Frank Ditch, Newsweek

THIS MOVIE IS DEDICATED TO THE MEMORY OF SHOKO ASAHARA OF AUM SHINRIKYO

AND IT’S COMING TO A TELEVISION SET NEAR YOU!!

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NEWS AND COMMENT:

Brandon’s truly profound study of the psyops methodologies in the war on Syria.  A must-read:

https://www.activistpost.com/2018/09/state-dept-cables-show-us-support-for-propaganda-television-stations-in-syria.html

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IDLIB:  3 containers of Sarin Gas killed an undisclosed number of White Helmets who were transporting them in order to give them to ISIS or Nusra terrorists near the Aleppo Provincial border.

Also, Sputnik reports that Nusra has given to ISIS and Ansaar Al-Tawheed 6 containers of Sarin Gas.  This report is accurate and my source says the Sarin gas was manufactured in Turkey.

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