9/11 Unmasked: An International Review Panel Investigation

By David Brooks

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David Ray Griffin and Elizabeth Woodworth. Olive Branch Press (Northhampton, MA; 2018) 308 pages

If any book would serve as a tombstone for the government-sponsored account of 9/11, this is it. Here lies the Authorized Conspiracy Theory; rest in pieces. A good fifty of them are laid out in this text for painstaking forensic examination. Like no other book before it, 9/11 Unmasked puts a wooden stake through the monstrous lie of 9/11. It represents the triumph of investigative research and critical thinking over tendentious conspiracy theorizing. Anyone who looks at this body of evidence will never believe the official story again – never, never, never.

Some may wonder why Prof. David Ray Griffin, who has already written voluminously on this subject, should feel compelled to give it another go. But this work functions as a capstone for all that has gone before. 9/11 Unmasked serves as the definitive user’s guide for deconstructing the official version of 9/11. It presents a resounding rebuttal to years of mendacious media reportage and fraudulent government reports. The text is concise and yet precise—300 reader-friendly pages backed up by nearly 900 endnotes. Sectioned into bite-sized chapters, it manages to be both a formidable work of scholarship and one which will appeal to the general public.

As if their own credentials were not enough, Griffin and co-author Elizabeth Woodworth convened a review panel of 23 experts in their respective disciplines to sift through the detritus of that day and arrive at a “best evidence” assessment regarding key components of the 9/11 narrative. Among the 51 subjects covered are the destruction of the Twin Towers and WTC 7, the attack on the Pentagon, claims about military and political leaders, phone calls from the 9/11 flights, and the question of insider trading. On any given point, they juxtapose the official version of events with empirical and testimonial evidence.

Here is a one sample chapter of their analysis:

The Official Account

Osama bin Laden was responsible for the 9/11 attacks. (The 9/11 Commission Report, Chapter 5)

The Best Evidence

The FBI did not list 9/11 as one of the terrorist attacks for which Osama bin Laden was wanted. When asked why, Rex Tomb, when he was the head of investigative publicity for the FBI, stated that the FBI had “no hard evidence” connecting bin Laden to 9/11. There were also other statements indicating that evidence of bin Laden’s guilt had not been provided.

Also, although Secretary of State Colin Powell and British Prime Minister Tony Blair promised to provide evidence of bin Laden’s responsibility for the 9/11 attacks, neither of them did.

Finally, The 9/11 Commission Report discussed the responsibility of bin Laden for the 9/11 attacks as if it had evidence for it. But the “evidence” consisted of statements by captured followers of bin Laden, especially KSM (Khalid Sheikh Mohammed), yet the co-chairmen of the 9/11 Commission—Thomas Kean and Lee Hamilton—reported that they had been unable to question KSM or the other detainees. They were not even allowed to observe the interrogations of these men. And so, said Kean and Hamilton: “We …had no way of evaluating the credibility of detainee information. How could we tell if someone such as Khalid Sheikh Mohammed was …telling us the truth?”

In this passage alone there are seven endnotes substantiating each and every claim made herein. Had Griffin wanted to write at greater length, he could have expounded on how “detainee information” was allegedly obtained through “enhanced interrogation”—torture. But Griffin is intent on documentation. No theorizing; just cold, hard facts obtained from primary sources.

Such meticulous methodology can get tedious quickly, however. God is in the details, but how easy it is to get bogged down in details. Who really cares what time Vice President Dick Cheney arrived at the White House Command bunker or how much insider trading went on? But some in-depth sleuthing pays off. What a shock to learn that the only evidence for hijackers wielding box-cutters is one undocumented phone call supposedly made by the wife of Bush’s Solicitor-General. That’s all! There’s no other evidence box-cutters were used—or even that planes were hijacked. Keep that in mind the next time you’re patted down by airport security agents.

The 9/11 Commission Report works well enough as the outline for an action movie, but in the hands of David Ray Griffin and fellow 9/11 researchers, it does not survive critical scrutiny. How chilling to realize that maybe it was never intended to do so.

Hovering over Griffin’s magisterial analysis are these haunting words by a senior advisor to President Bush (Karl Rove), speaking to a New York Times journalist back in 2004:

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.

Rove seemed to have anticipated the new academic discipline known as 9/11 Studies—which has indeed gone largely ignored, not only by official government agencies, but by every university political science department in the land. Intellectual analysis doesn’t get more judicious than this, but sure enough, “history’s actors” are still at it, forever plotting war.

But you have to wonder how long these so-called actors can keep up their act. While it’s true that 9/11 Truth has yet to set us free, neither is it going away. With every 9/11 anniversary that passes, more people smell something rotten in the Deep State of America.

Indeed the more judiciously one studies 9/11, the less it seems to fall under the rubrics of political science but that of sheer criminology. A monumental crime was committed – the pre-meditated mass murder of thousands of people! – but as Griffin relates, there was less forensic work done afterwards than what you see on a TV crime show

In this respect 9/11 Unmasked does not live up to its title. By the end of the book we are no more enlightened than at the beginning as to the identity of the perpetrators. The masks stay on. While Griffin produces abundant evidence that various branches of the US government were complicit in a cover-up, the question remains: Who actually committed the crime?

After going to such lengths to prove that explosives were put in World Trade Center, isn’t it time to ask who put them there? But in all the pages expended on the demolition of the WTC, there is not one mention of “Lucky” Larry Silverstein – the man who obtained the office complex only weeks before 9/11 and collected billions on the insurance. Nor is there mention of his good friend, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who called his pal every weekend without fail. Surely these individuals rate as “persons of interest,” as the police like to say.

But the cause of judicious analysis can only go so far. Having debunked the hallowed narrative of September 11th 51 ways to Sunday, Griffin ends his opus with this less-than-resounding note: “The most fateful example of fake news in the twenty-first century thus far has been the official account of 9/11. It is long past time to set the record straight.”

Is that all we can hope for? “To set the record straight”?! How about catching these criminals before they burn the rest of the planet down?!

But let’s see him do it. Let’s see David Ray Griffin set the record straight. Is there anyone more qualified for the job than the universally acknowledged Dean of 9/11 Studies? Let him reconvene the 9/11 Review Panel Investigation and determine what really happened, who did it, and why. What greater task can they have?

If there’s such a thing as an honest law enforcement agency in America, maybe someone will act on the findings of such a task-force. It’s never too late until it is.

The Smoking Gun in the Islamic State Conspiracy: Documents Prove US Arming Islamic State

By Georoid O’ Colmain

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Bulgarian journalist Dilyana Gaytandzhieva has revealed that the US is arming the Islamic State (IS) terrorist group in Yemen. On her website Armswatch.com, Gaytandzhieva has published the documentation of the weapons contractors involved. A complex international network involving Serbia, Croatia, Afghanistan, and the United States has been supplying arms to IS terrorists in Yemen, where a civil war has been raging since 2015.

Still, shots taken from an IS video in Yemen show weapons manufactured by Serbian state-owned arms manufacturer Krusik and exported by Jugoimport SDPR. The weapons were purchased by American company Alliant Techsystems LLC (a subsidiary of ATK Orbital) on orders from the US Government. They were ordered by the US military as part of the Resolute Support operation in Afghanistan. In other words, they were supposed to be part of the US training and support for Afghan military and police when, in fact, they were shipped to terrorists in Yemen and Syria.

still image taken from the Islamic State video in Yemen 675ad

*(This still image taken from the Islamic State video in Yemen shows mortar shells 82 mm M74 HE lot 04/18 from the Serbian arms factory Krusik along with mortar shells from Bosnia and Herzegovina.)

Gaytandzhieva’s report also shows that US companies have been shipping weapons to Al-Qaeda from the same Serbian manufacturers via US military bases in Croatia and Qatar, as part of the US Special Operations Command’s (USSOCOM) Train and Equip programme in Syria. Many of those weapons have been identified in Al-Qaeda and IS videos in Syria and Yemen.

The finance for these arms supplies was handled by Sierra Four Industries, USA, on behalf of the US Government. But the payment passed through British company Charles Kendall & Partners Ltd. Why would US government contracts pass through private British companies?

Another US arms contractor identified in the documents is Mil Spec Industries. They supply weapons to the US military. In a leaked email to Krusik, they ask that their company name be removed from the weapons packaging. Why does the company not want to be identified? Many names of US military personnel are mentioned in the document and copies of their passports are included. The leak is one of the most important pieces of investigative journalism in recent decades.

Unsurprisingly, no mainstream media outlets have covered the story. Instead, we continue to be told that the US is fighting IS or ISIS. But is there any reason to believe that the US and its allies are really fighting the Islamic State?

Origin of the Islamic State

The Islamic State of Iraq and Syria was formed in 2006 in the US Camp Bucca prison in Iraq. A 2014 Guardian report revealed that the group was formed in the prison under US supervision. Another Guardian report in November 2013 claimed the US was using Guantanamo Prison in Cuba as a training ground for double agents. The prison facility used for this purpose was called Penny Lane, a reference to the eponymous Beatle’s song. The Guardian article stated that:

“The biggest fear, former officials involved with the programme recalled, was that a former detainee would attack Americans then publicly announce that he had been on the CIA payroll.”

Strawberry Fields and Penny Lane

It is noteworthy that the US military used allusions to the Beatles in their prison facilities. Penny Lane is a street in Liverpool named after James Penny, a 19th-century slave trader. One cannot help speculate that the “shipping around” of US military-intelligence assets is what the US military had in mind when they set up Penny Lane secret facility.

The “Strawberry Fields” song was released simultaneously with “Penny Lane” in 1967. Critics have pointed out that “Strawberry Fields” contains occult symbolism. The song promotes drug-use and drop-out culture. In the 1950s and 60s the CIA ran programmes testing the effects of psychedelic drugs on the American population in order to assess their utility for social control and military operations. CIA agents such as cultural guru Timothy Leary promoted drugs among America’s youth. It was a generation of hedonism and narcissism which would produce some of contemporary world’s most ruthless capitalist overlords.

In 2001, the director of the Pentagon’s Office of Net Assessment, Andrew Marshall told Wire magazine that pharmacological warfare would be a central component of US military strategy in the following decade. The Armswatch report reveals that Atlas Air is one of the companies operating from Croatia where it undertakes the supply of narcotics on behalf of the US Government. It has been reported that many of the head-chopping terrorists in Syria use amphetamines, notably Captagon. The drugs excite and desensitize the terrorists, encouraging them to commit atrocities. Could the Penny Lane and Strawberry Fields facilities in Guantanamo Bay be the laboratory where these narcotics are tested on future double agents?

During the 2011 Libyan War, Colonel Gaddafi said the rebels in Benghazi were Al-Qaeda and were using drugs. A close associate of Bin Laden, Abdelhakim Belhaj was made NATO commander of Tripoli after the fall of Gaddafi. Belhaj had previously been under US captivity for terrorism, and was accused by former Spanish Prime Minister José Maria Aznar of being the mastermind of the 2004 Madrid train bombings which killed 193 people and injured 2000. Former Guantanamo inmate Abu Sofian bin Qumu was also part of the NATO-backed coalition against Gaddafi in Libya.

But the US Government’s links to terrorists go back a long way. In October 2010, Fox News reported that Yemeni Al-Qaeda leader Anwar Al-Awlaki dined at the Pentagon just months after the 2001 terrorists attacks in New York and Washington. FBI officials told the American news station that Pentagon officials were not interested in security concerns.

That a top Al-Qaeda operative could be invited to the Pentagon just months after the biggest terrorist attack in US history, makes the conspiracy theory that the US military is training terrorists rather than fighting them increasingly appear to be a conspiracy fact.

Terrorists protected by MI6

On 29 July 2005, former prosecutor for the US Justice Department, John Loftus told Fox News that the chief suspect in the July 2005 London bombings, Haroon Rashid Aswat, was an agent of MI6, the British Secret Service. He said they were protecting him and preventing his arrest by the Americans.

Loftus described a vast terrorist network operating in London called the Muhajiroun or Emigrants. It was the recruiting organisation for Al-Qaeda in Britain. MI6 used these terrorists to invade and destroy Yugoslavia during the 1990s, as NATO planned to break up the country into separate states. Loftus said:

“The CIA was funding the operation to defend the Muslims, British intelligence was doing the hiring and recruiting. Now we have a lot of detail on this because Captain Hook, the head of Al-Muhajiroun, his sidekick was Bakri Mohammed, another cleric. And back on October 16, 2001, he gave a detailed interview with al-Sharq al-Aswat, an Arabic newspaper in London, describing the relationship between British intelligence and the operations in Kosovo and Al-Muhajiroun. So that’s how we get all these guys connected. It started in Kosovo, Haroon was 31 years old, he came on about 1995.”

The Kosovan fighters committed countless atrocities against Serbs during the Balkan wars but were hailed as “heroes” by the Western media, while the Serbs were demonized.

NATO had plans for the break-up of Yugoslavia that go back to the 1970s. In an interview shortly before he died, French General Pierre Marie Gallois, “father of the French atom bomb,” explained in detail how NATO had conspired to destroy the Yugoslav Federation. General Gallois described the disinformation campaign waged by the Western media which blamed Kosovo Liberation Army atrocities on the Serbian army. The destruction of Yugoslavia would become a template for future wars of aggression waged by NATO against nations who refused to be subordinated to US military, economic and strategic interests.

The invasion and destruction of Libya in 2011 and the ongoing war against Syria are the most recent examples of genocidal wars waged by the West but blamed on the victims. The vast and highly-financed network of NGOs and compliant media outlets has been the key to keeping the Western public completely ignorant about the origin and nature of NATO’s “humanitarian” wars.

The US Bondsteel military base in Kosovo is the largest in Europe. An important Albanian source recently told me that the Bondsteel military base is being used as a training ground for the Mujahedeen Al Khalq, a terrorist organization which was used by the United States against Iran in the past and is now being revived for further terrorist operations against the Islamic Republic of Iran.

Several state media reports in Iraq and Iran have accused the United States and the UK of delivering arms to the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria. There is no reason to believe they are lying, given the fact that top US officials admit IS is a tool of US geopolitics.

Former NATO commander General Wesley Clark – who stated in 2004 that the United States would “take out” 7 countries in five years – has admitted repeatedly that IS is an invention of US Persian Gulf allies for the geostrategic objective of defeating Iran and Hezbollah.

“Very candidly, the only people that will fight the Iranians and the Shiia and Hezbollah are these zealous, religious nuts; and all the Sunni powers were using them. They created a Frankenstein in the region.”

He also told CNN:

“ISIS got started from our friends and allies because, as people will tell you from the region, if you want somebody who will fight to the death against Hezbollah, you don’t put out a recruiting poster and say: ‘Sign up for us, we’re going to make a better world.’ You go after zealots and you go after these religious fundamentalists. That’s who fights Hezbollah.”

Former US Vice-President Joe Biden confessed to Harvard University students in 2014 that US allies backed ISIS against Syrian president Bashar Al-Assad. In June 2016, Israel’s Military Intelligence Chief, General Herzi Halevey told reporters that Israel does not want to see ISIS defeated in Syria.

Israel has not disguised the fact that it supports ISIS in Syria

Both the Israeli Defense Minister and the former Israeli ambassador to the United States have admitted Israel prefers ISIS to Iran. It has been confirmed by the Israeli press that Al-Qaeda terrorists in Syria have received medical and military aid from Israel. A Dutch Justice Ministry official told De Telegraaf news agency in March 2015 that “ISIS has nothing to do with Islam. It’s part of a plan by Zionists who are deliberately trying to blacken Islam’s name.

Since 2001, the evidence of Western collusion in Islamist terrorism is overwhelming, yet the public remains brainwashed by the NGO-media public relations complex deceptively referred to as “news”, who fail to inform citizens about these facts. In 2015, Sudanese President Omar Bashir told Euro News that the CIA and the Israeli Secret Intelligence Service (Mossad) were behind Boko Harem and ISIL terrorists in Africa. These terrorist organizations are murdering thousands of innocent people and forcing millions of others to flee their countries, exacerbating a world refugee and migrant crisis which is now out of control.

When it appeared that the Trump administration was about to change course and actually eliminate the ISIS terrorists in Syria, the New York Times columnist Thomas L.Friedman complained, suggesting ISIS was of strategic value to the United States. When Donald Trump talks about “fake news”, he never refers to the fact that the mainstream media are supporting Islamist terrorists all over the world by calling them “moderate rebels” and “revolutionaries.”

Documentary proof US backs Islamic State

The Iranian Government has amassed considerable proof that the US and Israel support ISIS.

Gaytandshieva’s report gives details of major arms manufacturers and contractors involved in the supply of weapons to the barbaric terrorists. What emerges is an international network of highly lucrative deals involving billions of dollars — all in the service of genocide.

Since the US-backed bombing of Yemen in 2015, hundreds of thousands of children have starved to death in what is estimated to be one of the largest famines in modern history. Libya, Syria, Yemen, and many more countries throughout Africa have been overrun and destroyed by psychopaths armed and trained by the people who work in these Western arms companies. They must be held to account!

The people named in the leaked documents should be prosecuted for terrorism under international law.

In his 2015 presidential campaign, Donald Trump tweeted repeatedly about getting US forces out of Syria, and ending useless wars. But the wars have continued under his watch. On 20 December 2018, he said that “Russia, Iran, Syria & others are the local enemy of ISIS.”

If President Trump knows that Iran and the Syrian Government are fighting terrorism in the Middle East, why is the US Government preventing US intellectuals and officials — many of whom support Trump — from attending New Horizons Conferences in Iran? The entire focus of the New Horizons Conferences I have attended has been the defeat of Islamist terrorism and the prospects for peaceful relations with the West.

To suggest that there is a “clash of civilizations” — that the West is fighting a “war on terrorism” against an international network of ruthless killers bent on taking away our freedoms — is to propagate the most asinine form of conspiracy theory. What I have written about here is simply the hard and disturbing evidence of a decades-long conspiracy by a global oligarchy of militants, Zionists and bankers to increase their power through genocide and enslavement. Will the masses ever wake up?

In Strawberry Fields, John Lennon sings “living is easy with eyes closed, misunderstanding all you see”. That is precisely the matrix which the Western military-industrial-media-intelligence complex has imposed on the masses. The purpose of the mass media is to keep your eyes closed, to “take you down”, hypnotizing you into believing we live in a fruit meadow of human rights, freedom and democracy, when in reality what you perceive as strawberry fields is a vast, and ever-expanding sea of blood.

Kill Your Inner John Bolton

By  Caitlin Johnstone

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We each have a miniature John Bolton living rent-free inside our heads, ruining our peace and promoting world domination at every opportunity.

Hear me out.

The most common objection I hear when I advocate non-interventionist foreign policy can essentially be boiled down to something like, “But- but- but if we’re not controlling the world all the time, then the world will be out of our control!” The argument, as I understand it, is that if the US-centralized empire stopped waging endless wars, staging coups, inflicting siege warfare upon civilian populations, patrolling the skies with flying death robots, arming terrorist militias, and torturing journalists who expose US war crimes, the bad guys might win.

The thing I find funny about this argument, apart from the obvious, is that this is also the basic objection that the mind makes when the body is seated in meditation.

“This is all fine,” the mind interrupts constantly while the meditator struggles to find peace. “But there are tasks we must attend to, and there are wrong people on the internet who simply must be put in their place. Life is cold and hostile and we must protect and secure ourselves against it if we’re to be safe. You can keep sitting there doing that breathing nonsense if you must, but I’ve got plans, schemes and witty comebacks to formulate. The world simply cannot get by without my being there to control it.”

The best kind of meditation happens to be the same as best kind of foreign policy: you simply allow everything to be as it is. You sit without trying to manipulate or control any aspect of your experience. Since all mental suffering is ultimately born of the mind’s habit of trying to control life to protect and secure the interests of the illusory ego, the path to inner peace is therefore the same as the path to world peace: just allow things to be as they are.

In this form of meditation, you don’t try to force your mind to concentrate on anything in particular, or engage in any kind of manipulation at all. Thoughts come up about things that need to get done, and you just allow those thoughts to be as they are. Feelings come up about people who have wronged us in the past or stressful situations in the future, and you let them be, without getting involved. Everything which arises in your field of consciousness is given full permission to be as it is, without any mental interventionism.

When you sit in this way, the mind doesn’t really know what to do. It’s only ever existed in the context of conflict and control, so eventually it just lays down and relaxes, like a child throwing a tizzy who the mother just ignores.

It turns out that there is a deep and pervasive peace underlying everyone’s field of consciousness, and the only thing which keeps us from noticing it is our mental habit of continually fighting to control life in various ways. When we can relax and just allow our field of consciousness to be as it is, we notice ourselves beholding it with benevolent detachment, because the deep and pervasive peace underlying the appearance of all forms is in fact our true nature.

But it takes a leap of faith. It takes a decision to trust the world to handle its own affairs. It takes a conscious decision to honor the sovereignty of everyone and everything. Exactly as non-interventionist foreign policy would.

In exactly the same way that Trump’s National Security Advisor John Bolton argues that the “anarchic international environment” is so dangerous that any means necessary must be employed to bring it under control, we too have a shrill, mustachioed voice in our heads continually arguing that life must be brought to heel at any cost. But in both cases it is the agenda to control the world, and the inability to simply trust it, which is our real enemy. Our enemy is not a cold, hostile world which resists our attempts to control it, no: our enemy is the John Boltons, both within and without.

The natural, default position of both human consciousness and human civilization is peace. It is only by the most rigorous efforts to control and manipulate our world that we drag ourselves kicking and screaming out of that natural state. We will come to peace, both within and without, when we choose to trust the world and take that leap of faith into our true nature. The path to all peace necessarily follows this one unifying trajectory.

And until then of course the objections will continue. “What about the Russians?” “What about the Chinese?” “What about the wrong people on the internet?” But the thing about those objections is they’re quickly becoming irrelevant: humanity simply cannot keep doing things the way it is doing them. We are fast approaching a point where we will either sharply diverge from our current trajectory and make drastic, sweeping changes, or we will all perish due to nuclear war or ecological collapse.

One way or the other the sun will rise one day upon a world without any John Boltons, either in our heads or in Washington, DC. The only say we have in the matter is in whether this will happen because we chose to rid ourselves of the evil mutant death walruses who are driving us toward death and destruction, or because they succeeded in doing so.

Mike Pence Wants to Start the Space Wars! Claims Cosmos Belongs to US Government!

August 26, 2019

 

US Empire: The Reality of the “Greater United States”

Global Research, August 09, 2019

The US Empire is not a term you will commonly hear when people refer to the United States of America. Nor is the Greater United States, American Empire or even just Empire. There is something of a taboo quality to using the word empire to refer to the US. Yet, that is precisely what it is. With numerous territories and land acquisitions, around 1000+ military bases worldwide and the ability to project its power to influence and coerce foreign territories and nations, the USA is the biggest empire the world has ever known. Countless foreign nations, victims of US aggression and invasion, have denounced the US for its imperialism, a word with the same etymological root as empire. So why is it so strange to describe it as the US Empire?

USA: From Republic to Empire

It is a telling example that the American experiment in self-governance has turned out like this. What began as an attempt to set up one of the most limited, constrained and decentralized governments ever has transmogrified into a sprawling empire whose breadth, power and influence is unprecedented in world history. Those who believe humanity should run society without government (anarchists) based only on voluntary cooperation (voluntaryists) point to the results of the American experiment as proof that government by its very nature grows out of control. The results, they say, show that no matter what limits you attempt to put on government, they can always be undone, because politicians can simply change laws and find way to bypass constitutions once they are in power. For one example of many, look at how the US bypassed many privacy and surveillance laws in the Bill of Rights by dreaming up a new idea (terrorism), defining it in law (first international terrorists, then domestic terrorists), changing the definition to describe their political enemies (gun carriers, conspiracy theorists), then applying that by name-calling its citizens. Suddenly, the usual rules don’t apply when terrorism and the fake war on terror are invoked. All of this is gives credence to the idea that no government is better than small government in the anarchy vs minarchy debate.

US Empire Greater United States

The actual Greater United States. Image credit: Daniel Immerwahr

US Empire Land Acquisition

Right from the start, the US has always looked west. The original 13 colonies soon expanded. Just to name a few highlights, the US Republic bought Louisiana from the French in 1803, annexed Texas in 1845 and took California away from Mexico in 1848 (at the conclusion of the Mexican-American War). The US then expanded further, such that it then had a mainland of 48 contiguous states and territory beyond that. It bought Alaska from Russia in 1867 and it conquered Hawaii in 1893 after a coup by a small group of rich landowners put a gun to the head of Hawaiian Queen Liliuokalani. A watershed moment in the history of the US Empire, and its land and territory acquisition, came in 1898. At that time, the Spanish colonial Empire was falling, and Spain was having problems quelling dissent in its colonies such as Cuba. Through a false flag operation revolving around the USS Maine, the USA entered the conflict (named the Spanish-American War), defeated Spain and established itself as a new colonial and imperial power. While it was at it, it either purchased or annexed the Philippines, Puerto Rico, Guam, American Samoa and Wake Island. Thus, by end of the 19th century, the US had already transformed itself into the US Empire. In this video and in his book, Daniel Immerwahr makes the point that around this time, Americans began to redraw their maps and take pride in their new status; however later on, they sought more to play down and hide their power, figuring it would serve them better to keep it concealed. At one point in the video clip, Immerwahr tells the story of an American GI soldier in the Philippines during WW2, who was told by a Filipino that the US had colonized the Philippines, but didn’t realize it. “What?” he said, thinking he was fighting in a foreign country not on US territory, “We colonized you?”

Hiding the Empire: 1000+ Military Bases

Fast forward around 120 years, and just look at the state of affairs. The US emerged as the sole world superpower after WW2, but unlike the British Empire, it decided not to outright conquer or annex territory, but rather to build military installations on virtually every continent. The US hides the official number of its military bases so as to conceal the true extent of its imperial reach, however based on the research of people like Chalmers Johnson and Nick Turse, we know that it is at least 1000 bases, and quite probably more. Johnson died in 2010, but in a talk now removed from YouTube claims that in 2004, the Pentagon’s official number was 725 (as published in the Base Structure Report). However, he acknowledged that the Pentagon disguised many of its bases and had 300+ unacknowledged ones. Turse has written many articles and books on the topic of US military bases including this 2019 one Bases, Bases, Everwhere … Except in the Pentagon’s Report:

“Officially, the Department of Defense (DoD) maintains 4,775 “sites,” spread across all 50 states, eight U.S. territories, and 45 foreign countries. A total of 514 of these outposts are located overseas, according to the Pentagon’s worldwide property portfolio. Just to start down a long list, these include bases on the Indian Ocean island of Diego Garcia, in Djibouti on the Horn of Africa, as well as in Peru and Portugal, the United Arab Emirates, and the United Kingdom. But the most recent version of that portfolio, issued in early 2018 and known as the Base Structure Report (BSR), doesn’t include any mention of al-Tanf. Or, for that matter, any other base in Syria. Or Iraq. Or Afghanistan. Or Niger. Or Tunisia. Or Cameroon. Or Somalia. Or any number of locales where such military outposts are known to exist and even, unlike in Syria, to be expanding.”

To put this number in perspective, the emerging rivals to the US Empire have barely any foreign military bases: Russia has 21 (according to this source) and China has 2.

Hallmark of the US Empire: The Projection of Power without Annexation of Territory

The rulers of the United States Inc. have done a very good job of concealing the power and reach of the US Empire. Through domestic propaganda, they have obscured the reality of the empire such that not many Americans make the connection. They have also avoided colonizing too many weaker nations, instead preferring to project power without actually annexing land. This is achieved through economic warfare such as forcing smaller nations to buy US products, or the infamous use of sanctions as accelerated by Trump against nations like Venezuela and Iran. Then there is also the method described by former economic hitman John Perkins.

But, but … the US is a Republic, Right?

Some people at this point may say, “Well, the US may be an Empire, but its form of government is still a Constitutional Republic. Therefore, the US is a Republic.” Yes, the US is a republic in the sense that it has (highly controlled) elections where (s)elected individuals ascend to power, however, despite this form of governance, the US still behaves as an imperial bully, aggressor and invader to nations outside of it. That behavior is what defines it as an empire. In this context, the word “republic” means nothing. Have you noticed the irony with which nations around the world use the word republic in their official country titles? Both of the communist totalitarian nations of China and North Korea are “republics” since they are called People’s Republic of China and Democratic People’s Republic of Korearespectively. Never mind the censorship and control via social credit. In the so-called “free” West, in the Federal Republic of Germany, if you investigate the truth about the Holocaust you can be fined or imprisoned. In the French Republic, people are so taxed to the hilt they donned yellow vests to spark a worldwide protest movement. Republic means “a state in which supreme power is held by the people and their elected representatives.” Do you really think the people hold the supreme power in the US, China, North Korea, Germany or France?

Conclusion

Words have power. Propagandists and magicians alike know this, since they know words help to mold perception and create reality. This is why you “spell” words, since uttered words are like a (magic) spell. The power of the US Empire lies in its narrative control and perception control. Whoever controls words, controls narrative; whoever controls narrative, controls perception. It’s a simple formula. Orwell’s great work 1984 showed what can come from word control. The question we must ask ourselves here is this: why is it so strange, uncomfortable and unfamiliar to call a spade a spade, and to admit internally to ourselves and externally to others that the USA is an empire? Surely this uncomfortability itself is evidence of the magic of word control and propaganda. Are we so programmed and conditioned with ideas of “USA = freedom and democracy” that we can’t fathom the idea of a US Empire? If so, then it is more crucial than ever that people begin to use terms like US Empire and Greater United States to take a small yet bold step of breaking the conditioning that holds them in chains.

*

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This article was originally published on The Freedom Articles.

Makia Freeman is the editor of alternative media / independent news site The Freedom Articles and senior researcher at ToolsForFreedom.com. Makia is on Steemit and FB.

Sources

*https://thefreedomarticles.com/anarchy-vs-minarchy-pros-cons/

*https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y-mz7x2RAmI

*https://www.salon.com/2019/01/11/bases-bases-everywhere-except-in-the-pentagons-report_partner/

*https://theintercept.com/2018/12/01/u-s-military-says-it-has-a-light-footprint-in-africa-these-documents-show-a-vast-network-of-bases/

*https://www.newsweek.com/russias-military-compared-us-which-country-has-more-military-bases-across-954328

*https://thefreedomarticles.com/google-project-dragonfly-helps-china-censorship/

*https://thefreedomarticles.com/sesame-credit-gamification-control/

Featured image is from The Freedom Articles

The last western Empire?

The Saker

The last western Empire?

August 01, 2019

[this column was written for the Unz Review]

“Missing the forest for the trees” is an apt metaphor if we take a look at most commentary describing the past twenty years or so. This period has been remarkable in the number of genuinely tectonic changes the international system has undergone. It all began during what I think of as the “Kristallnacht of international law,” 30 August September 1995, when the Empire attacked the Bosnian-Serbs in a direct and total violation of all the most fundamental principles of international law. Then there was 9/11, which gave the Neocons the “right” (or so they claimed) to threaten, attack, bomb, kill, maim, kidnap, assassinate, torture, blackmail and otherwise mistreat any person, group or nation on the planet simply because “we are the indispensable nation” and “you either are with the terrorists or with us“. During these same years, we saw Europe become a third-rate US colony incapable of defending even fundamental European geopolitical interests while the USA became a third-rate colony of Israel equally incapable of defending even fundamental US geopolitical interests. Most interestingly looking back, while the US and the EU were collapsing under the weight of their own mistakes, Russia and China were clearly on the ascend; Russia mostly in military terms (see here and here) and China mostly economically. Most crucially, Russia and China gradually agreed to become symbionts which, I would argue, is even stronger and more meaningful than if these two countries were united by some kind of formal alliance: alliances can be broken (especially when a western nation is involved), but symbiotic relationships usually last forever (well, nothing lasts forever, of course, but when a lifespan is measured in decades, it is the functional equivalent of “forever”, at least in geostrategic analytical terms). The Chinese have now developed an official, special, and unique expression to characterize that relationship with Russia. They speak of a “Strategic, comprehensive partnership of coordination for the new era.”

This is the AngloZionists’ worst nightmare, and their legacy ziomedia goes to great lengths to conceal the fact that Russia and China are, for all practical purposes, strategic allies. They also try hard to convince the Russian people that China is a threat to Russia (using bogus arguments, but never-mind that). It won’t work, while some Russians have fears about China, the Kremlin knows the truth of the matter and will continue to deepen Russia’s symbiotic relationship with China further. Not only that, it now appears that Iran is gradually being let in to this alliance. We have the most official confirmation possible of that fact in words spoken by General Patrushev in Israel after his meeting with US and Israeli officials: “Iran has always been and remains our ally and partner.”

I could go on listing various signs of the collapse of the AngloZionist Empire along with signs that a new, parallel, international world order is in the process of being built before our eyes. I have done that many times in the past, and I will not repeat it all here (those interested can click here and here). I will submit that the AngloZionists have reached a terminal stage of decay in which the question of “if” is replaced by “when.” But even more interesting would be to look at the “what”:

what does the collapse of the AngloZionist Empire really mean?

I rarely see this issue discussed and when it is, it is usually to provide all sorts of reassurances that the Empire will not really collapse, that it is too powerful, too rich and too big to fail and that the current political crises in the USA and Europe will simply result in a reactive transformation of the Empire once the specific problems plaguing it have been addressed. That kind of delusional nonsense is entirely out of touch with reality. And the reality of what is taking place before our eyes is much, much more dramatic and seminal than just fixing a few problems here and there and merrily keep going on.

One of the factors which lures us into a sense of complacency is that we have seen so many other empires in history collapse only to be replaced pretty quickly by some other, that we can’t even imagine that what is taking place right now is a much more dramatic phenomenon: the passage into gradual irrelevance of an entire civilization!

But first, let’s define our terms. For all the self-aggrandizing nonsense taught in western schools, Western civilization does not have its roots in ancient Rome or, even less so, in ancient Greece. The reality is that the Western civilization was born from the Middle-Ages in general and, especially, the 11th century which, not coincidentally, saw the following succession of moves by the Papacy:

These three closely related events are of absolutely crucial importance to the history of the West. The first step the West needed was to free itself from the influence and authority of the rest of the Christian world. Once the ties between Rome and the Christian world were severed, it was only logical for Rome to decree that the Pope now has the most extravagant super-powers no other bishop before him had ever dared contemplate. Finally, this new autonomy and desire for absolute control over our planet resulted in what could be called “the first European imperialist war”: the First Crusade.

To put it succinctly: the 11th century Franks were the real progenitors of modern “Western” Europe and the 11th century marked the first imperialist “foreign war” (to use a modern term). The name of the Empire of the Franks has changed over the centuries, but not its nature, essence, or purpose. Today the true heirs of the Franks are the AngloZionists (for a truly *superb* discussion of the Frankish role in destroying the true, ancient, Christian Roman civilization of the West, see here).

Over the next 900 years or more, many different empires replaced the Frankish Papacy, and most European countries had their “moment of glory” with colonies overseas and some kind of ideology which was, by definition and axiomatically, declared the only good (or even “the only Christian”) one, whereas the rest of the planet was living in uncivilized and generally terrible conditions which could only be mitigated by those who have *always* believed that they, their religion, their culture or their nation had some kind of messianic role in history (call it “manifest destiny” or “White man’s burden” or being a Kulturträger in quest of a richly deserved Lebensraum): the West Europeans.

It looks like most European nations had a try at being an empire and at imperialist wars. Even such modern mini-states like Holland, Portugal or Austria once were feared imperial powers. And each time one European Empire fell, there was always another one to take its place.

But today?

Who do you think could create an empire powerful enough to fill the void resulting from the collapse of the AngloZionist Empire?

The canonical answer is “China.” And I think that this is nonsense.

Empires cannot only trade. Trade alone is simply not enough to remain a viable empire. Empires also need military force, and not just any military force, but the kind of military force which makes resistance futile. The truth is that NO modern country has anywhere near the capabilities needed to replace the USA in the role of World Hegemon: not even uniting the Russian and Chinese militaries would achieve that result since these two countries do not have:

1) a worldwide network of bases (which the USA have, between 700-1000 depending on how you count)

2) a major strategic air-lift and sea-lift power projection capability

3) a network of so-called “allies” (colonial puppets, really) which will assist in any deployment of military force

But even more crucial is this: China and Russia have no desire whatsoever to become an empire again. These two countries have finally understood the eternal truth, which is that empires are like parasites who feed on the body which hosts them. Yes, not only are all empires always and inherently evil, but a good case can be made that the first victims of imperialism are always the nations which “host the empire” so to speak. Oh sure, the Chinese and the Russians want their countries to be truly free, powerful and sovereign, and they understand that this is only possible when you have a military which can deter an attack, but neither China nor Russia have any interests in policing the planet or imposing some regime change on other countries.

All they really want is to be safe from the USA, that’s it.

This new reality is particularly visible in the Middle-East where countries like the United States, Israel or Saudi Arabia (this is the so-called “Axis of Kindness”) are currently only capable of deploying a military capable of massacring civilians or destroy the infrastructure of a country, but which cannot be used effectively against the two real regional powers with a modern military: Iran and Turkey.

But the most revealing litmus test was the US attempt to bully Venezuela back into submission. For all the fire and brimstone threats coming out of DC, the entire “Bolton plan(s?)” for Venezuela has/have resulted in a truly embarrassing failure: if the Sole “Hyperpower” on the planet cannot even overpower a tremendously weakened country right in its backyard, a country undergoing a major crisis, then indeed the US military should stick to the invasion of small countries like Monaco, Micronesia or maybe the Vatican (assuming the Swiss guard will not want to take a shot at the armed reps of the “indispensable nation”). The fact is that an increasing number of medium-sized “average” countries are now gradually acquiring the means to resist a US attack.

So if the writing is on the wall for the AngloZionist Empire, and if no country can replace the USA as imperial world hegemon, what does that mean?

It means the following: 1000 years of European imperialism is coming to an end!

This time around, neither Spain nor the UK nor Austria will take the place of the USA and try to become a world hegemon. In fact, there is not a single European nation which has a military even remotely capable of engaging the kind of “colony pacification” operations needed to keep your colonies in a suitable state of despair and terror. The French had their very last hurray in Algeria, the UK in the Falklands, Spain can’t even get Gibraltar back, and Holland has no real navy worth speaking about. As for central European countries, they are too busy brown-nosing the current empire to even think of becoming an empire (well, except Poland, of course, which dreams of some kind of Polish Empire between the Baltic and the Black Sea; let them, they have been dreaming about it for centuries, and they will still dream about it for many centuries to come…).

Now compare European militaries with the kind of armed forces you can find in Latin America or Asia? There is such a knee-jerk assumption of superiority in most Anglos that they completely fail to realize that medium and even small-sized countries can develop militaries sufficient enough to make an outright US invasion impossible or, at least, any occupation prohibitively expensive in terms of human lives and money (see herehere and here). This new reality also makes the typical US missile/airstrike campaign pretty useless: they will destroy a lot of buildings and bridges, they will turn the local TV stations (“propaganda outlets” in imperial terminology) into giant piles of smoking rubble and dead bodies, and they kill plenty of innocents, but that won’t result in any kind of regime change. The striking fact is that if we accept that warfare is the continuation of politics by other means, then we also have to admit, that under that definition, the US armed forces are totally useless since they cannot help the USA achieve any meaningful political goals.

The truth is that in military and economic terms, the “West” has already lost. The fact that those who understand don’t talk, and that those who talk about this (denying it, of course) have no understanding of what is taking place, makes no difference at all.

In theory, we could imagine that some kind of strong leader would come to power in the USA (the other western countries are utterly irrelevant), crush the Neocons like Putin crushed them in Russia, and prevent the brutal and sudden collapse of the Empire, but that ain’t gonna happen. If there is one thing which the past couple of decades have proven beyond reasonable doubt is that the imperial system is entirely unable to reform itself in spite of people like Ralph Nader, Dennis Kucinich, Ross Perrot, Ron Paul, Mike Gravel or even Obama and Trump – all men who promised meaningful change and who were successfully prevented by the system of achieving anything meaningful. Thus the system is still 100% effective, at least inside the USA: it took the Neocons less than 30 days to crush Trump and all his promises of change, and now it even got Tulsi Gabbard to bow down and cave in to Neocons’ absolutely obligatory political orthodoxy and myths.

So what is likely to happen next?

Simply put, Asia will replace the Western World. But – crucially – this time around no empire will come to take the place of the AngloZionist one. Instead, a loose and informal coalition of mostly Asian countries will offer an alternative economic and civilizational model, which will be immensely attractive to the rest of the planet. As for the Empire, it will very effectively disband itself and slowly fade into irrelevance. Both US Americans and Europeans will, for the very first time in their history, have to behave like civilized people, which means that their traditional “model of development” (ransacking the entire planet and robbing everybody blind) will have to be replaced by one in which these US Americans and Europeans will have to work like everybody else to accumulate riches. This notion will absolutely horrify the current imperial ruling elites, but I wager that it will be welcomed by the majority of the people, especially when this “new” (for them) model will yield more peace and prosperity than the previous one!

Indeed, if the Neocons don’t blow up the entire planet in a nuclear holocaust, the USA and Europe will survive, but only after a painful transition period which could last for a decade or more. One of the factors which will immensely complicate the transition from Empire to “regular” country will be the profound and deep influence 1000 years of imperialism have had on the western cultures, especially in the completely megalomaniac United States (Professor John Marciano’s “Empire as a way of life” lecture series addresses this topic superbly – I highly recommend them!): One thousand years of brainwashing are not so easily overcome, especially on the subconscious (assumptions) level.

Finally, the current rather nasty reaction to the multi-culturalism imposed by the western ruling elites is no less pathological than this corrosive multi-culturalism in the first place. I am referring to the new theories “revisiting” WWII and finding inspiration in all things Third Reich, very much including a revival of racist/racialist theories. This is especially ridiculous (and offensive) when coming from people who try to impersonate Christians but who instead of prayers on their lips just spew 1488-like nonsense. These folks all represent precisely the kind of “opposition” the Neocons love to deal with and which they always (and I really mean *always*) end up defeating. This (pretend) opposition (useful idiots, really) will remain strong as long as it remains well funded (which it currently is). But as soon as the current megalomania (“We are the White Race! We built Athens and Rome! We are Evropa!!!”) ends with an inevitable faceplant, folks will eventually return to sanity and realize that no external scapegoat is responsible for the current state of the West. The sad truth is that the West did all this to itself (mainly due to arrogance and pride!), and the current waves of immigrants are nothing more than a 1000 years of really bad karma returning to where it came from initially. I don’t mean to suggest that folks in the West are all individually responsible for what is happening now. But I do say that all the folks in the West now live with the consequences of 1000 years of unrestrained imperialism. It will be hard, very hard, to change ways, but since that is also the only viable option, it will happen, sooner or later.

But still – there is hope. IF the Neocons don’t blow up the planet, and IF mankind is given enough time to study its history and understand where it took the wrong turn, then maybe, just maybe, there is hope.

I think that we can all find solace in the fact that no matter how ugly, stupid and evil the AngloZionist Empire is, no other empire will ever come to replace it.

In other words, should we survive the current empire (which is by no means certain!) then at least we can look forward to a planet with no empires left, only sovereign countries.

I submit that this is a future worth struggling for.

The Saker

الأفول الأميركي سياق تاريخي

الأفول الأميركي سياق تاريخي

يوليو 26, 2019

ناصر قنديل

– لا تستقيم عملية فهم ما تشهده الزعامة الأميركية في العالم إلا إذا أُخذت في سياقها التاريخي، فأميركا التي بدأ صعودها كدولة عظمى مع الحرب العالمية الأولى، تكرّست مكانتها الاقتصادية والعسكرية والسياسية في نظام ما بعد الحرب العالمية الثانية، كدولة قادرة على خوض حروب كبرى تدفع خلالها مئات آلاف الجنود في ساحات القتال وتنفق مليارات الدولارات على الحروب، وهي التي خاضت بعد الحرب العالمية الثانية حروباً طويلة ومكلفة رغم خسارة مئات الآلاف من جنودها في الحرب، فكانت الحرب الكورية وحرب فيتنام في ظل الحرب الباردة مع الاتحاد السوفياتي مساحات تثبيت المكانة الأميركية الجديدة، وهذا التجاذب بين النجاح والفشل في الحروب لا يمكن الحكم عليه إلا بنهايته، التي نقلت أميركا من دولة عظمى إلى الدولة العظمى مع نجاحها بتفكيك الاتحاد السوفياتي وسيطرتها على دول أوروبا الشرقية عام 1990، حيث يمكن القول إن الحرب الباردة الممتدة من مؤتمر يالطا عام 1954 إلى سقوط جدار برلين عام 1989، قد إنتهت بانتصار أميركي شكل بلوغ واشنطن قمة السيطرة على العالم وقمة النفوذ وقمة الصعود.

– في تاريخ الإمبراطوريات لا يمكن النظر لبلوغ القمة كحدث عابر، يمكن أن تكون الخيبات وعمليات التراجع بعده بميزان ما قبله ذاته. فالإمبراطوريات التي تبلغ القمة، وتبدأ بالتراجع تكون قد دخلت زمن الأفول، وبدأت تعيش شيخوختها. وبالنظر للحال الأميركية بعد الانتهاء من هزيمة الاتحاد السوفياتي والسيطرة على تركته كما فعلت بالسيطرة بعد الحرب العالمية الثانية على تركة بريطانيا وفرنسا، يمكن القول إن التوسّع الإمبراطوري الأميركي على حدود روسيا قد بلغ مداه، في عهد الرئيس بيل كلينتون، وأن ولايتَيْ الرئيس جورج بوش كانتا الفرصة لتطويع قوى الممانعة الآسيوية، وإكمال تطويق روسيا من الشرق. وهذا مغزى حربي أفغانستان والعراق، ومن بعدهما الحروب الإسرائيلية الصغيرة في لبنان وفلسطين، وهي حروب انتهت بالفشل جميعها، ومن بعدها كانت الحرب الناعمة المسماة بالربيع العربي درباً جديداً للفشل في إخضاع آسيا، حيث المثلث الروسي الصيني الإيراني، وحيث الحرب على سورية يمكن وصفها بآخر الفرص لتثبيت الزعامة الأميركية.

– يسهل الاستنتاج بتراجع حيوية المجتمع الأميركي بتراجع قدرته على خوض الحروب. فالمقارنة بين حرب فييتنام وما قدمته فيها أميركا قبل أن تبدأ بالتفكير بالانسحاب، وحرب العراق وما كان كافياً لتراجع أميركا عنها، يقول إنه الفرق بين الدولة التي قدمت خمسين ألف قتيل من جيوشها وصمدت عشرين سنة وهي تقاتل حتى بدأت تفكر بالانسحاب. والدولة التي لم تتحمل خسارة أقل من خمسة آلاف قتيل وخمس سنوات حتى استسلمت لفكرة الفشل واقتنعت بالحاجة للانسحاب، وتراجع الحيوية يظهر اقتصادياً بأرقام لافتة تحدث عنها الرئيس الأميركي دونالد ترامب في خطاباته الانتخابية من تراجع النمو حجم البطالة وتهالك البنى التحتية، وإقفال المصانع وكساد الزراعة، بينما كانت اقتصادات دول منافسة كالصين تسجل نسباً عالية في النمو، والقدرات العسكرية لدول منافسة كروسيا تسجل تطوراً في القدرة التسليحية النوعية، والقدرات البشرية القتالية لدول مثل إيران وقوى المقاومة تظهر قدرة احتمال في الميدان على التضحيات التي افتقدتها القوات الأميركية في جولات متتالية من المواجهة.

الأفول الأميركي تعبير غير مبالغ به بقياس الخط البياني للسلوك الأميركي في مواجهة الأزمات، فهل من مرة سابقة فقدت خلالها أميركا طائرة عسكرية على يد دولة اخرى تعلن مسؤوليتها، ولم تقم أميركا بالرد، وهل من سابقة عن مرة ضربت فيها أهداف قالت واشنطن إنها ستشعل حرباً إذا وقعت، كما كان الحال في الحديث الأميركي عن حماية المصالح النفطية في الخليج، وعندما حدث ذلك تراجعت أميركا، وبالتوازي أيضاً، هل من سابقة لوحدة وعزلة أميركا وفقدانها القدرة، تشبه إعلانها الانسحاب من الاتفاق النووي وبقائها وحيدة، أو تشبه إعلان تأييدها لاعتبار القدس عاصمة لـ إسرائيل وبقائها وحيدة أيضاً، أو إطلاقها مشروع صفقة القرن وعدم الحصول على أي تأييد دولي ذي قيمة؟

Image result for ‫نهاية زمن امريكا‬‎

ما يشهده الخليج من تجاذب إيراني أميركي يشبه التجاذب الأميركي الأسباني والأميركي البريطاني في القارة الأميركية، فعندما كانت بريطانيا إمبراطورية بدا أفولها بخسارة مكانتها في القارة الأميركية وعندما كانت اسبانيا إمبراطورية حدث معها الشيء نفسه، حتى ان الحركة البوليفارية التحررية في أميركا الجنوبية التي قادها سيمون دي بوليفار بوجه الأسبان، تمت تحت شعار التشبه بما فعله الأميركيون الشماليون مع البريطانيين. وما تفعله إيران اليوم مع أميركا يشبه ذلك الفعل يومها، خصوصاً لجهة الإعلان عن نهاية زمن إمبراطروية عظمى.

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فعلاً لم يحدث هذا منذ ألف عام

 

يوليو 25, 2019

ناصر قنديل

– في كلام سابق للأمين العام لحزب الله السيد حسن نصرالله إشارة اعتبرها مرشد الجمهورية الإسلامية في إيران الإمام علي الخامنئي بصيص أمل عن اقتراب موعد تحرير القدس من الاحتلال، وفقاً لما وصفه نصرالله بالاستدلال بالمنطق واقع المعادلات والتوازنات، رابطاً أمله الشخصي بالصلاة في القدس بمعادلة الحياة والموت التي لا يمكن التحكم بها، رغم وقوع توقعاته لتحرير القدس ضمن المدى المنطقي لما يمكنه من أن يكون شاهداً على التحرير، وفي كلام لاحق لمستشار الإمام الخامنئي الدكتور علي ولايتي، المعروف بمكانته في الملفات الاستراتيجية في فريق الإمام الخامنئي، إشارة إلى أن إسقاط الطائرة الأميركية الإلكترونية العملاقة واحتجاز ناقلة النفط البريطانية، أحداث تمثل منعطفاً في تاريخ العالم الإسلامي.

– بالعودة إلى التاريخ تبدو منطقة الساحل الشرقي للبحر المتوسط وعمقها الآسيوي، كميدان جغرافي للمواجهات التاريخية بين الغرب والشرق، مسرحاً لتسجيل انتصارات الغرب وهيمنته واستعراضاته العسكرية، وفرض مصالحه الاقتصادية منذ خمسة قرون على الأقل عندما بدأت الإمبراطورية العثمانية تقدّم التنازلات للدول الأوروبية في جنوب السلطنة، لضمان مصالحها في بلدان الشمال، وصولاً لتفكك السلطنة مع الحرب العالمية الأولى وما تبعها من ترسيخ للهيمنة الغربية، لكن حتى مراحل صعود السلطنة العثمانية لم تشهد ردعاً للصولات والجولات الغربية نحو شرق المتوسط، فخلالها نشأ ما عُرف بعهد القناصل، وتنامي الإرساليات، ونشوء النسخ البدائية للوكالات التجارية.

– آخر ما يكتبه التاريخ عن يد الشرق العليا في شرق المتوسط كان في تمكّن شعوب المنطقة من مواجهة حملات الفرنجة التي سُمّيت بالحروب الصليبية واتخذت الدين شعاراً لها لحشد المشاركة في التعبئة لقواتها تحت شعار الذهاب إلى القدس، بينما سحقت في طريقها إلى فلسطين كل الكنائس الشرقية وقتلت الآلاف من قساوستها ورهبانها، ودمّرت ممتلكاتها، وقتلت عشرات الآلاف من رعاياها، واللافت أن حروب الفرنجة نجحت يومها خلال الفترة الممتدة من نهاية القرن الحادي عشر إلى نهاية القرن الثاني عشر ببناء مستوطنات في فلسطين ونجحت بوضع يدها على القدس، بصورة لا تختلف كثيراً عن واقع كيان الاحتلال اليوم، وبقيت الأساطيل الغربية ومحاولات تأمين طريق بري بحملات مستديمة، هي مصدر الحماية الذي يشكل مصدر قوة هذا الكيان الاستيطاني الناشئ يومها.

– مع تحرير القدس في نهاية القرن الثاني عشر، وجعلها متاحة لكل المؤمنين لممارسة عباداتهم وشعائرهم الدينية، انتهت عملياً الحروب الكبرى وبقيت مناوشات استمرت تحت مسمّى حملات صليبية، لكنها لم تقدر أن تغير الواقع الجديد، حتى نشوء كيان الاحتلال منتصف القرن العشرين، لكن اللافت بالقياس التاريخي أنه منذ نشأة هذا الكيان القائم على اغتصاب فلسطين، للمرة الأولى يبدو محاصراً بصواريخ قوى المقاومة ومقاتليها من كل الجهات عاجزاً عن خوض حرب، وتبدو الأساطيل البحرية والجوية والبرية لنجدته عاجزة عن تشكيل توازن ردع في المنطقة. وهذا هو مغزى ما تمثله حوادث إسقاط الطائرة الأميركية واحتجاز الناقلة البريطانية.

– منذ ألف عام لم يحدث مثيل لذلك، رغم ما تلقته الأساطيل الغازية لنابليون بونابرت على سواحل مصر أو أسوار عكا، ورغم حروب المواجهة التي خاضها جمال عبد الناصر في مواجهة العدوان الثلاثي، فقد بقي في كل حالة منها مجال للإعداد لجولة مقبلة، حيث كان احتياط الغرب القوي ينتقل من ضفة إلى ضفة، كما هو حال الأفول الفرنسي لحساب بريطانيا والأفول البريطاني لحساب أميركا. وهذا مغزى القول اليوم إنه منعطف تاريخي، وبصيص أمل.

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Washington’s Mighty Warriors: Draft Dodgers and Scoundrels

By Philip Giraldi
Source

draft dodgers and scoundrels 2b994

Remember Shakespeare’s line “he jests at scars that never felt a wound?” That epithet could have been written with National Security Advisor John Bolton in mind. Bolton was notoriously a draft dodger during the Vietnam War, like his current boss, not due to any scruples regarding what was occurring, but out of concern for his own sorry ass. He is now credibly believed to be the driving force behind the punishment being meted out to Venezuela and, far more dangerously, of the creeping escalation that is taking place in the Middle East that is seeking to draw Iran into a misstep that would lead to war. Bolton, who has received the “Defender of Israel” award, has long been an outspoken advocate for attacking Iran and now he has the power to do just that.

The psychopaths in the White House have been pretending that the United States “and its allies” are being threatened by Iran, a ridiculous conceit in and of itself as the Persians are hugely outgunned by the local U.S. presence as well as by the weapons in place in the region in the hands of the Saudis and Israelis. Israel is, one might recall, armed to the teeth through the beneficence of the United States and is also the region’s only nuclear armed power by virtue of the theft of U.S. technology and enriched uranium. The Saudis, meanwhile, are about to receive another $8 billion American made weapons due to the “Iranian threat.” That Trump has arranged the arms sale on his own questionable authority as an “emergency response” seems to bother some in Washington and the media, but no one will ultimately do anything about it as everyone inside the Beltway hates Iran due to the assiduous work of the Israel Lobby.

Trump has already sent bombers to the Persian Gulf region as well as an aircraft carrier and he is now adding 1500 more troops because the Iranian threat is reportedly increasing. The alleged threat itself is based on generic Israeli intelligence about what the Iranians might do if they choose to react to U.S. pressure. The intelligence reportedly suggests that there might be attacks on American diplomatic missions in Iraq, which has led to the evacuation of dependents and unnecessary staff from the posts in Baghdad and Irbil. It is also claimed that the Iranians were mounting anti-ship missiles on small coastal vessels to deploy against American warships.

The Pentagon claims that it has photographic evidence of the anti-ship missile threat, but Gareth Porter has demolished the analysis that has been produced by the White House, noting that the truly dangerous missiles are largely shore based and hidden.

The reality is that the Executive Branch of the federal government is essentially contriving a phony war supportive of no conceivable national interest that is based on lies and might even include a “false flag” operation that will condemn Iran for something it did not do. Some have compared it to the lead-up to Iraq, which is a fair judgment, but one has to suspect that the current situation is much worse as a war with Iran is potentially far more damaging to actual American interests than Saddam Hussein ever was. Iran will fight back and has capable defenses, which means Americans, not Israelis or Saudis, will die. So too will many thousands of innocent Iranian civilians. And there will be new trillions of dollars to add to the already crippling war debt being amassed Washington with absolutely nothing to show in return.

If there is any hope on the horizon it might be coming from a number of media reports that President Donald Trump has expressed considerable irritation with the advice he is getting from Bolton and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo. He reportedly began to see the light when the attempted coup in Venezuela did not develop as planned, resulting in some comments by the president that he had been misled into thinking that the regime change would be “easy.” He has since that time stated that he does not want war with Iran, though his actions would suggest otherwise, and some news reports suggesting that he is unhappy and at odds with Bolton in particular.

Unfortunately the desktop warriors who are currently calling the shots in Washington have no idea what they might be getting into. The only former soldier among them is Pompeo, who is a West Point graduate. He missed Vietnam and has never been involved in actual combat. He is also is a Christian Zionist who welcomes a major war in the Middle East in hopes that it will bring about the second coming of Jesus Christ.

Neither Pompeo nor Bolton has any real understanding that war means death. If Bolton has his way, many thousands will die and the United States will be reviled by nearly the entire world. President Donald Trump for all his self-proclaimed “genius” status does not appear to understand that reality either. For him, megadeaths and national humiliation might mean little more than the numbers on a balance sheet when one is reckoning up the costs of constructing a building.

This impending tragedy must be stopped. Back in 2003, a hundred thousand Americans gathered at the Washington Mall to protest against the drive to invade Iraq. Nothing like that has developed yet, but the people must rise up to demand that the government cease and desist from doing things in their name that do not help a single American but instead only bring death and destruction. Trump promised to do that when he ran for president. It is past time that he fulfill that promise.

Israel Terror-Bombs Syria With Impunity

By Stephen Lendman
Source

Israel partners with all US wars of aggression, notably against Syria, ruling regimes of both countries waging war on the country without declaring it.

What’s been ongoing since March 2011 is all about seeking regime change, wanting Syria colonized and exploited, Iran isolated, the same objective in play against its government — part of the US/NATO/Israeli aim for regional hegemony, the rule of law ignored, the human toll of no consequence.

Russian good faith efforts since 2012 for peace through Geneva, Astana, and Sochi talks failed because the US, Israel, and their imperial partners reject diplomatic conflict resolution. 

It’s why US-led forever wars rage in Syria, Afghanistan, Yemen, and elsewhere, no end of them in prospect.

Israel has been terror-bombing Syrian targets on the phony pretext of countering nonexistent Iranian and Hezbollah threats throughout much of the war.

The only threats the US, NATO, and Israel face are invented ones. Real ones don’t exist so they’re invented to unjustifiably justify naked aggression on nations and groups threatening no one.

Israel admitted launching hundreds of preemptive strikes on Syrian targets. Former IDF chief General Gadi Eisenhkot earlier said “(w)e struck thousands of targets (in Syria) without claiming responsibility or asking for credit.”

In response to two reported rockets from Syria striking illegally occupied Golan, falling harmlessly, Israeli warplanes terror-bombed Syrian targets pre-dawn Sunday.

Throughout the war, no evidence suggests Syrian forces ever targeted Israeli territory. Clearly they’d be nothing to gain and everything to lose.

Attacking Israel would escalate war Damascus is winning and wants ended. Clearly its forces had nothing to do with striking occupied Golan on June 1.

Most likely, US/Israeli supported terrorists were to blame for the incident, giving the Netanyahu regime a pretext for a terror-bombing attack even though it needs none to do whatever it pleases — with full US support and encouragement, with the UN and world community failing to hold it accountable.

According to the Syrian Arab News Agency (SANA), on Sunday, “Syrian air defenses have confronted an Israeli attack targeted (on) sites in southwestern Damascus and Quneitra, a military source said,” adding:

“The aggression resulted in the martyrdom of three soldiers and the injury of seven others.” Reportedly most Israeli missiles were downed, some striking intended targets.

An IDF statement said Israeli warplanes and attack helicopters struck Syrian air defense, artillery positions, and “a number of observation and intelligence posts on the Golan Heights front.”

According to Israeli military-connected DEBKAfile, Israeli warplanes “struck Iranian-Hizballah concentrations (sic) near Damascus.

DF admitted that no combat operations were ongoing in the area from which rockets were launched at Golan, suggesting it was false flag attack, perhaps jointly US/Israeli planned to wrongfully blame Syrian forces.

The IDF claim about Syria attacking Israeli military targets is belied by no injuries or damage reported, two reported rockets falling harmlessly, likely in open areas.

If Syrian forces wanted to strike Israeli positions, why were only two rockets involved, why not multiple missiles able to hit targeted sites accurately.

The claim about a Syrian attack is clearly phony. The same goes for falsely blaming Damascus for CW incidents. No evidence throughout the war suggests its forces ever used these banned weapons.

Indisputable evidence proved US supported terrorists used them numerous times, nearly always falsely blamed on Damascus for what it had nothing to do with.

War launched by Obama, escalated by Trump, rages in its ninth year with no near-term prospect for resolution because Washington rejects it.

On May 20, nearly 400 bipartisan House and Senate members called on Trump to “(i)ncrease pressure on Iran and Russia with respect to activities in Syria…to counter Iran’s support for Hezbollah as well as Russia’s support for…Assad…”

They urged tougher (illegal) sanctions and other (hostile) actions on these countries and Hezbollah, claiming nonexistent threats.

They want endless war continued, not ended. So do Trump regime hardliners.

US aggression in Syria follows the same pattern as Afghanistan and Yemen, both wars ongoing since October 2001 — raging endlessly with no prospect for resolution any time soon.

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Hostile US Agenda Against Iran, China, and Other Countries It Doesn’t Control

By Stephen Lendman
Source

There’s no ambiguity about it — whether Republicans or undemocratic Dems are in power. Their tactics at times differ, their objectives the same, seeking dominance over other nations, demanding they bow to Washington’s will or face its wrath.

Toughness is only language the US understands, how China, Iran, Venezuela, North Korea, and Cuba respond to its acceptable actions, refusing to go along.

It’s a lesson Russia failed to internalize, falsely believing normalized relations with the US are possible ahead — despite over 100 years of hostility, except during WW II against Nazism and the end of the Reagan era. 

Today bilateral relations are more dismal than during the height of Cold War differences, its most potentially dangerous time during the missiles of October when Jack Kennedy was president.

He later said he never had any intention of attacking Soviet Russia over the issue, a nation he favored rapprochement with, nuclear disarmament, and peace over war — why the CIA killed him.

Russia’s ineffective approach to the US shows in various ways, including by referring to its ruling authorities as “partners” and “colleagues.” 

Republicans and undemocratic Dems consider Russia their mortal enemy, falsely accusing it of all sorts of things it had nothing to do with, imposing illegal sanctions on its officials and enterprises. That’s not how “partners” and “colleagues” treat each other.

According to the Wall Street Journal, the Trump regime’s “real agenda” toward Iran is all about waging sanctions war for “enough economic distress” to get its ruling authorities to “buckle under the weight of popular discontent.”

A second claimed objective aims “to drive Iran’s top leaders back into a conversation with the US, perhaps with (DJT) himself.”

In other words, the Journal believes tough talk and actions on Iran can work the way as it got North Korea’s leader to hold two summits with Trump. 

Cold hard reality tells a different story with both countries. Sanctions don’t work. Most often they’re counterproductive. In nations where they’re imposed, ordinary people hit hardest most often blame the government levying them, not their own.

True enough, North Korea came to the bargaining table with Trump, well aware of longstanding US hostility toward the country, knowing talks could be futile like other times before.

Nothing was accomplished between both countries because of unacceptable US demands. Nor is anything positive ahead likely.

Time and again, the US proves it can never be trusted. Even when becoming signatories to treaties, conventions, and agreements, most often it breaches them.

The Trump regime offered North Korea nothing but empty promises, decades of US hostility toward the country left unchanged, the same thing true for Iran.

The US wants both countries, and all other sovereign independent ones co-opted as client states, demanding they subordinate their sovereignty to US interests, polar opposite what dealmaking the way it should be is all about, why Iran wants no part of talks with Trump or other US officials.

The Journal’s premises are wrong. The harder the Trump regime comes down on Iran, the more ordinary Iranians despise the US, supporting their government, not opposing it.

The same holds for its ruling authorities, wanting no part of dealing with a regime it can’t trust.

Russia foolishly thinks diplomatic outreach to the US can resolve differences, even though the approach when tried fails time and again.

Most recently, Iran experienced US duplicity by Trump’s illegal JCPOA pullout — on top of 40 years of hostility toward its government and people. For Russia, it was DJT’s abandonment of the INF Treaty — each action based on Big Lies.

There’s no prospect whatever for normalized US relations with nations it doesn’t control. Polar opposite it true, going all out to force their compliance with US demands — by war by other means, the hot alternative, and/or other hostile actions.

Retired US Army Colonel/former chief of staff to Colin Powell when  secretary of state Lawrence Wilkerson believes Trump regime tough tactics against China could lead to war, and not just over trade differences.

Both countries are world’s apart on political, economic, financial, trade, and military issues, Wilkerson saying US confrontation with China is all about feeding the military, industrial, security complex’s insatiable appetite for near-unlimited funding.

The same goes for Russia, Iran and other nations the US falsely calls threats to its national security, a sure way to get billions more dollars from Congress for offense on the phony pretext of protecting national security.

What mostly scares the Pentagon and industrial/security complex is a peace dividend, why enemies are invented when none exist.

They’ve been none since WW II ended, so they’re manufactured to assure endless wars, peace treated as a threat to national security.

It’s why the global war OF terror, not on it, was created, major media playing a lead role in perpetuating the myth of barbarians at the gate threatening the US.

Americans are easy marks to be fooled, no matter how many times they were duped before, believing rubbish pounded into their minds by the power of state and media propaganda — the latter acting as press agents for powerful interests against the general welfare.

US Intelligence Shows No Iranian Threat Exists

By Stephen Lendman
Source

Claims by Trump regime hardliners about an Iranian threat lack credibility. No evidence suggests the Islamic Republic threatens any nations — not the US, Israel, its imperial partners, or any others.

Following a closed-door Tuesday congressional briefing on the Islamic Republic, Pompeo slammed Iranian “malign activity” that doesn’t exist, nor “40 years of terrorist activity — how the US and its imperial partners operate, not Tehran.

Trump’s acting war secretary Patrick Shanahan turned truth on its head, claiming “we received credible intelligence about threats to our interests in the Middle East and to American forces (sic)” by Iran, adding:

“That intelligence has borne out in attacks (sic), and I would say it’s also deterred attacks (sic). We have deterred attacks based on our re-posturing of assets, deterred attacks against American forces (sic).”

No such actions occurred because no Iranian threats exist to deter.

After Bolton briefed congressional members Monday on Iran, hawkish GOP Senator Lindsey Graham tweeted:

“It is clear that over the last several weeks Iran has attacked pipelines and ships of other nations (sic) and created threat streams against American interests in Iraq (sic),” adding: 

“If the Iranian threats against American personnel and interests are activated, we must deliver an overwhelming military response.”

Congressional briefings on Monday and Tuesday failed to convince Dems. Senator Chris Murphy said the following:

“I’m listening to Republicans twist the Iran intel to make it sound like Iran is taking unprovoked, offensive measures against the US and our allies,” adding:

“I’ve read the (same) intel, and let me be clear: That’s not what the intel says.” There’s nothing in it about an Iranian threat, just the opposite, indicating no Iranian threat exists.

Rep. Ruben Gallego made similar remarks, saying: “Lindsey and I get the same intel. That is not what is being said. This is total information bias to draw the conclusion he wants for himself and the media.”

Rep. Adam Smith said “(w)e still don’t know what the (Trump’s) objectives are,” adding he “does not anticipate” military action against Iran,” adding:

“What our ‘maximum pressure’ campaign has done in terms of achieving our objections, I have not seen.”

Speaker Pelosi said the White House has “no business” moving toward confrontation with Iran without congressional approval, adding: 

“We have to avoid any war with Iran…The very idea that they would say that they would use the authorization of the use of military force that is 18 years old is not appropriate in terms of its scope, its geography, its timing for any actions they might take.”

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer called information gotten from Trump regime officials about an Iranian threat “inadequate.”

Ranking Dem Senate Foreign Relations Committee member Bob Menendez said “Congress has not authorized war with Iran.” The White House has not provided any information to this committee on the intelligence behind their” their accusations against Tehran.

Former senior State Department official involved in negotiating the JCPOA Wendy Sherman warned against making reckless accusations against Iran, undermining the credibility of its claimants.

Rep. Abigail Spanberger called Trump regime remarks about Iran “deeply troubling.” House Intelligence Committee chairman Rep. Adam Schiff said he wants to know what Trump’s “strategy is…to keep us out of war” with Iran.

For weeks, Trump regime officials failed to provide evidence of Iranian “malign activities” or threats to US or Israeli regional interests.

The claim about Iran intending to attack US forces is utter rubbish. Not a shred of evidence supports it. What possible benefit could Iran get by taking this action — with everything to lose and nothing to gain by going this far.

Weeks earlier, John Bolton falsely accused Iran of “troubling and escalatory” activities. At the time, a fake news NYT report claimed “intelligence (shows) Iran or its proxies were preparing to attack American troops in Iraq and Syria,” citing unnamed Trump regime officials — no evidence cited because none exists.

In early May, citing unnamed Trump regime officials, NBC News claimed intelligence showed Iran and/or its “proxies…could go after American military targets in the region,” adding:

Attacks could come from “small ships…Iranian-trained Shiite militia groups, and…against US ships by the Houthi rebels in Yemen” — no evidence cited backing the clearly fabricated claims.

In mid May, the NYT falsely claimed “communication intercepts and imagery indicated that Iran was building up its proxy forces’ readiness to fight” — again no evidence presented. Accusations and allegations without it are baseless.

Last week, the Pentagon put its forces in Iraq on high alert over a nonexistent Iranian threat. The State Department ordered all non-emergency personnel to depart the country.

Iraqi officials said they’re unaware of any threat to US or other foreign personnel from Iran. UK General Chris Ghika, Combined Joint Task Force – Operation Inherent Resolve deputy commander, expressed a similar view, saying:

“There’s been no increased threat from Iranian-backed forces” in Iraq or regionally. “We monitor them along with a whole range of others because that’s the environment we’re in. If the threat level…go(es) up then we’ll raise our force protection measures accordingly,” adding:

“As of now, “coalition forces observed no change in (the posture of Iran and its allies) since the recent exchange between the US and (Tehran), and we hope and expect (this) will continue…We don’t see an increased threat from them at this stage” because there is none.

A CENTCOM statement shot back, repeating the falsified claim of an Iranian threat without providing a shred of evidence proving it.

If a legitimate Iranian threat existed, the US and its “coalition” partners would agree, not disagree on the issue.

Germany’s Defense Ministry spokesman Jens Flosdorff agreed with Ghika, saying “there is no concrete threat” from Iran to the US or its regional allies.

Claims about Iranian responsibility for sabotage to Saudi and UAE tankers, as well as against Saudi pumping stations, were and remain willful disinformation.

The Trump regime is waging war on Iran by other means, aiming to make its economy scream through harsh illegal sanctions and other hostile actions.

Its plan to drive Iranian oil exports to zero is doomed to fail. China remains a key buyer, in April purchasing about 800,000 barrels a day of Iranian crude, according to customs data.

Its Sinopec and China National Petroleum Corp invested billions of dollars in Iran’s oil fields, recouping their investment by importing large amounts of Iranian oil monthly, what’s highly unlikely to stop.

Its Foreign Ministry denounced US anti-Iranian actions. Both countries maintain normal political, economic, and trade relations. The same goes for Russia, Turkey and other nations.

War winds are blowing way short of gale force. Going this far against Iran is opposed by the world community and leading Dems. Even some establishment media are skeptical in recent articles and commentaries.

The usually hawkish Washington Post raised concerns, saying “war with Iran would be the mother of all quagmires.”

“A conflict with Iran would not be like the Iraq War. It would be worse…Trump is barreling toward war with Iran. Congress must act to stop him…The Iran threat is being exaggerated by GOP hawks.”

A NYT opinion piece headlined: “Don’t Fight Iran.” A separate one headlined: “How to Stop the March to War With Iran.”

Last Friday, the Times headlined: “War With Iran? Count US Out, Europe Says.” In its latest edition, the Times said Trump officials haven’t convinced skeptical Dems about supporting war on Iran.

WaPo today headlined a similar remark. The Wall Street Journal quoted Trump regime acting war secretary Patrick Shanahan, saying the “Iran threat” (sic) has been put “on hold.”

Separately, the Journal said “Intel suggests (the) US (and) Iran misread each other, stoking tensions.”

Trump appears wary of war on Iran. John Bolton’s rage for attacking the country gained traction among hawkish Republicans, not Dems.

As long as the world community and Dem leadership oppose going this far, attacking Iran most likely will be restricted to waging war by other means — short of military intervention.

Note: According to a newly released Reuters/Ipsos poll, 60% of Americans oppose US war on Iran. Only 12% support it.

Proving propaganda works as intented, 53% of respondents said they believe the Islamic Republic is a “serious (or) imminent” threat — polar opposite reality.

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Escalated Trump Regime War Threats Against Iran

By Stephen Lendman
Source

Preemptive Trump regime war on Iran would be madness. Israel should be wary about what it’s long pushed for.

If war on Iran happens, its cities, military, and nuclear facilities will be vulnerable. So will US regional bases, troops and warships.

Knowing it could be attacked by US and/or Israeli forces, Hezbollah could aid Tehran by missile strikes on Israeli and US targets. If Russia got involved to defend its regional interests as it did in Syria, global war could follow.

All of the above is why I doubt the Trump regime will go this far, continuing to exert maximum toughness on the Islamic Republic by other means — notably by escalated sanctions war to crush its economy, heated rhetoric, and saber rattling, hoping for regime change by these actions.

Yet Pompeo, Bolton, Netanyahu, and likeminded extremists in both countries are so hostile toward Iran, making anything possible, even unthinkable war on the nation, risking dire consequences if launched.

It could happen by accident or design, perhaps by a CIA/Mossad false flag, a US tradition since the mid-19th century, 9/11 the mother of them all.

According to the Wall Street Journal on Monday, an unnamed Trump regime official accused Iran of “likely (being) behind the attack on two Saudi Arabian oil tankers and two other vessels damaged over the weekend near the Strait of Hormuz,” the Journal adding:

“The assessment (was) not conclusive…The US official…didn’t offer details about what led to the assessment or its implications for a possible (Trump regime) response.”

On Monday, a similar AP News report cited an unnamed Trump regime official, saying an “initial assessment (of what happened to Saudi and UAE tankers) is that Iranian or Iranian-backed proxies” were responsible — a bald-faced Big Lie.

Pompeo falsely accused Iran of “escalating a series of threatening actions and statements in recent weeks.” 

Days earlier, a State Department statement said the Trump regime “hold(s) (Iran) accountable for activities that threaten the region’s stability and harm the Iranian people. This includes denying Iran any pathway to a nuclear weapon” it doesn’t seek.

Iran’s nuclear program has no military component, affirmed multiple times by the IAEA and US intelligence community.

In its annual assessments of global threats, time and again it stated that no evidence suggests the Islamic Republic is pursuing a nuclear weapons capability.

Claims otherwise by Trump regime hardliners and Israel are bald-faced Big Lies.

On Monday, Trump said “(i)f they do anything, they will suffer greatly. We’ll see what happens with Iran.”

Fact: Iran hasn’t attacked another country in centuries, threatening none now except in self-defense if attacked, its legal right under the UN Charter and other international law.

Fact: Iran seeks regional peace and stability. Its ruling authorities abhor nuclear weapons, wanting them all eliminated.

Fact: Not a shred of evidence suggests Iran had anything to do with alleged sabotage to Saudi and UAE tankers over the weekend.

Fact: Lots of evidence shows the Islamic Republic intends no actions to give the Trump regime a pretext for war.

Fact: Tehran seeks mutual cooperation with regional and world community nations.

Fact: Throughout the Islamic Republic’s history, seven US administrations sought regime change — from Jimmy Carter to Trump.

Fact: US war plans were drawn against Iran years ago, never implemented, updated over time. The possibility of US aggression against the country is greater by the Trump regime than any time before.

So far, US actions have been restricted to sanctions war, hostile rhetoric, and saber-rattling. How far the Trump regime intends to go against Iran remains to be seen.

Bolton and acting US war secretary Patrick Shanahan reportedly drew up a plan to deploy up to 120,000 US troops to the Middle East if Iran attacks Pentagon forces or resumes activities Washington can claim are all about pursuing nuclear weapons — no matter how false.

The plan reportedly was discussed by Bolton, Shanahan, CIA director Gina Haspel, DNI Dan Coats, and Joint Chiefs Chairman General Joseph (“fighting Joe”) Dunford.

It’s unclear if Trump was briefed so far. Pompeo and Bolton have been escalating hostile rhetoric toward Iran for months. Fake Mossad intelligence warned of a possible Tehran plot against US regional forces.

Not a shred of credible evidence suggests such a plan exists. Big Lies repeated enough get most people to believe them. All wars are based on lies and deception.

In response to phony claims of an Iranian threat to US Middle East forces, the Pentagon deployed the USS Abraham Lincoln carrier strike group and nuclear-capable B-52 bombers to the region.

In April, Trump falsely declared Iran’s Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) a terrorist group, an unprecedented action against a nation’s military. US moves against Iran greatly escalated tensions, heightening the risk of war.

All post-WW II US wars were against nations threatening no one, naked aggression by any standard, none authorized by Congress or the Security Council.

On Monday, Pompeo met with his UK, French, and German counterparts in Brussels, along with EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini, discussing Iran.

She was quoted saying that the EU strongly opposes “military escalation” against Iran, urging “maximum restraint and avoiding any escalation on the military side,” adding:

“Pompeo heard that very clearly today from us, not only from myself, but also from the other ministers of EU member states” on where they stand on this issue.

“We, as you know, as the European Union, always encourage dialog and diplomatic engagement. This has always been our commitment. This is what we are practicing, including with Iran.”

EU/NATO countries are involved in virtually all US wars of aggression, Washington’s so-called “coalition of the willing.” Will Iran be an exception if the Trump regime attacks the country? Heavy pressure will be brought to bear on its key countries to get involved if things go this far.

Mogherini was less than candid, claiming “(t)here is full determination on the European Union’s side, and also all the member states expressed that today very clearly on continuing to implement it at full the nuclear deal with Iran.”

Since Trump’s JCPOA pullout last May, EU actions belied its supportive rhetoric for the deal, failing to follow through on promises made.

It’s why Iran gave Britain, France and Germany “60 days to meet their commitments, especially in the banking and oil sectors,” adding:

“Whenever our (legitimate) demands are met, we will, to the same extent, resume the commitments. Otherwise, the Islamic Republic will be suspending more commitments stage by stage.” 

“In line with protecting the security and national interests of the Iranian people,” the Supreme National Security Council said it’ll suspend some of its voluntary commitments, relating to enrichment and storage of uranium and heavy water — according to its rights under JCPOA articles 26 and 36.

“Iran stands ready to continue its consultations with the remaining parties to the deal at all levels, but it will swiftly and firmly react to any irresponsible measure, including returning the case (of Iran’s legal nuclear program) to the Security Council or imposing more sanctions.”

Iran, Russia and China fully comply with JCPOA provisions. The Trump regime illegally pulled out of the binding agreement. Britain, France and Germany failed to fulfill their obligations, delaying and equivocating instead.

Will they change their behavior in the weeks ahead to save the deal, or will they surrender to US demands like countless times before?

Avoiding US war on Iran may depend on their JCPOA compliance. How they’ll act is very uncertain. The jury remains out on this vital issue.

Note: Spain’s Defense Minister Margarita Robles ordered the withdrawal of its Mendez Nunez frigate from the Middle East combat group led by the USS Abraham Lincoln over heightened tensions with Iran. 

Will other NATO countries take similar actions to avoid the risk of war with the Islamic Republic?

 

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