Trump Doubles Down on Coup D’État

Trump Doubles Down on Coup D'État - TheAltWorld

Finian Cunningham

Former editor and writer for
major news media organizations.
He has written extensively on
international affairs, with articles
published in several languages

November 12, 2020©

For the first time in the history of the United States an incumbent president is refusing to concede electoral defeat. Ominously, Donald Trump, the sitting president, has this week also packed the Pentagon’s civilian leadership and intel agencies with political loyalists who are described as his “foot-soldiers”.

The flurry of appointees are former special forces and generals. Here is a profile of the president’s men. One Pentagon insider said of them: “These are the people who go in and do whatever they think is required to achieve his [Trump’s] agenda. They are true soldiers in the war on government, the war on what Trump calls the deep state.”

The shakeup in the military-intelligence apparatus has stunned observers from its audacity. There is speculation that Trump will next sack the Pentagon’s top general Mark Milley, FBI chief Christopher Wray and CIA director Gina Haspel, to be replaced by “true believers” of his Make America Great Again project.

There is an edgy feeling that Trump, a maverick megalomaniac, is actually going for it. That is, a coup d’état.

But this can’t happen here, or so goes the plaintive refrain. Well, it looks like it is.

A stunning bold-faced denial of reality this week came from Secretary of State Mike Pompeo who told incredulous reporters that there would be a “smooth transition”… to a second Trump administration.

Most of the Republican lawmakers on Capitol Hill are refusing to acknowledge publicly that Democrat Joe Biden won the presidential election – despite him gaining a decisive lead of more than five million votes over Trump as well as in the all-important Electoral College votes.

Trump-appointed Attorney General William Barr is brazenly politicizing the justice department by endorsing Trump’s calls for investigations and lawsuits over allegations of voting fraud and other purported irregularities. There is negligible evidence to support these allegations, many of which have been thrown out already by state judges as frivolous. But Barr is giving inordinate authority to shore up what amounts to tittle-tattle from a sore loser.

State election officials, both Republican and Democrat, have unanimously reported no significant electoral fraud or malfeasance.

Republican city commissioner in Philadelphia Al Schmidt, in the key swing state of Pennsylvania which was won by Biden, confirmed there were no voting irregularities. He was then denounced as “disloyal” by Trump. Schmidt also claims to have subsequently received death threats.

Strangely, too, Trump and Republicans in Congress aren’t complaining about fraud in the down-ballot votes for the House and the Senate races where they performed relatively well in gaining or holding on to seats. Even though those ballots were cast in the exact same process as the presidential vote. How can one item on the ballot sheet be prone to fraud, but the ones which suit Republicans aren’t? It’s self-serving duplicity that’s what it is.

What Team Trump is betting on is not winning litigation over the election results. There is not a chance of the president overturning the large majorities that Biden won in key swing states. No, the game plan seems to be to cast doubt on the legitimacy of the elections and run out the clock so that Republican legislatures in states like Pennsylvania, Georgia, Wisconsin, Michigan and Arizona do not certify Biden as the winner of the popular vote.

Moreover, it is being mooted that Republican legislatures in these states will appoint electors to the Electoral College who will nominate Trump as the winner, in defiance of the popular vote. The Electoral College is to convene on December 14 when the deciding vote is cast on who is to be next president. Tradition and precedent holds that the state electors respect the popular vote, but this election is unprecedented. It is not unthinkable that Trump will continue insisting that the election was stolen from him by citing (baseless) fraud claims. For many of his 72 million voters, there is a shared conviction (delusion) that the election was rigged or absurdly contend that the coronavirus was “weaponized”.

Biden won over 77 million votes in the popular ballot. If Trump goes for barricading himself in the White House claiming he is the rightful winner, then the U.S. faces a constitutional nightmare scenario. Widespread violent protests are on the cards, if not civil war. Already Trump hacks have prepared the propaganda narrative that any protests against Trump are the work of “Antifa subversives” and “Marxist terrorists”. We saw that outlandish narrative being wheeled out during the recent months of legitimate massive protests against racist police killings.

As tensions boil over in the run-up to the presidential inauguration date on January 2o, what Trump and his cadres will declare is a state of emergency and martial law to “protect the nation” from leftists and “deep state” orchestrated “color revolution” against a “democratically elected president”.

This is the significance of the shakeup at the Pentagon and intelligence apparatus this week. Trump is putting in place the kind of fascist operatives to carry out his coup d’état.

Ironically, Trump claims he was the target of coup forces from the deep state after his 2016 election victory over “swamp creature” Hillary Clinton. To be fair to Trump, that effort to unseat him was real enough, centered on baseless “Russia collusion” claims that dogged his entire presidency. However, that coup attempt failed. But now another seizure of power is underway this time hatched by Trump himself and his cronies.

Biden and his Democrat party are being sheepishly complacent about the dramatic and daring power grab taking place by Trump. Biden this week sought to sound calm and cool, saying that Trump’s refusal to concede defeat was merely “embarrassing”. Biden really is being “sleepy Joe” if he doesn’t realize that there is a coup going down in the White House.

Another sign of complacency was from the New York Times which headlined: ‘Trump Stacks the Pentagon and Intel Agencies with Loyalists. To What End?’

The NY Times answered its question by speculating Trump was planning overseas adventurism, perhaps a military attack on Iran or a rushed withdrawal of troops from Afghanistan.

How stupidly complacent. Trump’s adventurism is not overseas, it is right at home. It’s all about trashing the U.S. constitution and installing himself for a second term regardless of democratic mandate. In short, dictatorship.

The Hill: Trump Mulling Firing Top Officials at the Pentagon, FBI, CIA

The Hill: Trump Mulling Firing Top Officials at the Pentagon, FBI, CIA

By Staff, Agencies

US President Donald Trump is considering firing War Secretary Esper, CIA director Gina Haspel and others, including FBI Director Christopher Wray, The Hill has reported, citing sources said to be familiar with the situation.

One source told the outlet that despite recent Pentagon statements to the contrary, Esper could be forced out as soon as this week. A second source noted however that nothing has been set in stone so far.

An aide to members of the House Armed Services Committee confirmed that the panel had not been told about “any imminent personnel changes within Pentagon leadership” to date, with the Pentagon pointing media inquiries to earlier comments by Pentagon spokesman Jonathan Hoffman that Secretary Esper had “no plans to resign,” nor had he been asked to resign.

Esper and Trump suffered a falling out in recent months, including over Trump’s opposition to the stripping of Confederate leaders’ names from US military bases, and the Pentagon chief’s resistance to deploying the military to crack down on anti-racism and police justice protests overwhelming multiple major US cities this summer.

Speculation is also rife that CIA chief Haspel and FBI Director Christopher Wray may be forced out, The Hill says, citing what it says is frustration in the White House over a lack of support amid recent political developments, including the lack of a formal FBI probe into Hunter Biden’s alleged illegal business dealings in Ukraine, and the agency’s refusal to sack officials responsible for the Russiagate investigation against Trump.

Trump picked Esper for the post of Secretary of Defence in mid-2019, with Esper succeeding General Jim Mattis, who resigned over disagreements with Trump on Syria policy and other issues. Trump picked Haspel for the post of CIA director in May 2018 after its previous chief, Mike Pompeo, was tapped to replace Rex Tillerson as Secretary of State.  Wray succeeded James Comey as FBI director in August 2017.

No Letup in US War on Iran by Other Means Ahead

By Stephen Lendman

Global Research, November 02, 2020

On all things Iran under both right wings of the US war party, transforming the country into a subservient vassal state is a high priority.

Regardless of whether Republicans or Dems control the White House and/or Congress, things won’t change ahead.

That’s been firm policy in Washington since Iranians ended a generation of US-installed fascist tyranny in 1979.

Since that time, the Islamic Republic of Iran has been target No. One in the oil-rich Middle East for regime change by Washington’s ruling class.

Bipartisan US policy aims to regain control over the country’s vast hydrocarbon resources — along with wanting Israel’s main regional rival neutralized.

So far, US strategy focused on war by other means since its orchestrated 1980s Iran/Iraq war.

Under Trump since 2017, maximum pressure has been and continues to be prioritized.

It’s all about wanting to inflict maximum human pain and suffering on the Iranian people that includes medical terrorism to prevent imports of medicines, medical equipment and related supplies.

It’s also all about piling on sanctions and more of the same to try isolating Iran.

The latest ones came in late October.

On October 23, the Trump regime unilaterally in breach of the UN Charter sanctioned five Iranian entities and IRGC officials on phony charges of “interfering in our elections.”

Ignored was that throughout US history, no evidence ever showed foreign meddling in the process by any foreign government — not Iran, Russia, or any others.

In stark contrast, clear evidence revealed unlawful US interference in scores of foreign elections throughout the post-WW II period.

On October 26, the Trump regime unlawfully sanctioned entities, individuals and vessels connected to Iran’s energy industry.

They included Iran’s Oil Ministry, its minister, the National Iranian Oil Company, National Iranian Tanker Company, and various other Iranian officials.

On Friday, October 30, more illegal US sanctions were imposed — in a futile attempt to “constrain (Iran’s) oil and petrochemical sales.”

Iran’s Arya Sasol Polymer Company, Binrin Ltd, Bakhtar Commercial Co., Kavian Petrochemical Co., and Strait Shipbrokers PTE. Ltd were targeted.

Officials connected to these firms were also sanctioned.

Everything the Trump regime and its predecessors threw at Iran since its 1979 revolution failed to achieve regime change — including their war of words.

Islamic Republic resilience preserved and protected the nation’s sovereign independence from diabolical USA aims.

US establishment media serve as imperial state press agents, managed news misinformation and disinformation their specialty.

US Policy Toward Iran Is All About Regime Change

One of the latest examples came from NBC News  on Thursday, saying:

“Top US officials were briefed on an active threat against Pentagon leaders (sic)” — citing customary unnamed sources, adding:

“US military, intelligence and law enforcement officials were briefed late last month on a threat against the Pentagon’s most senior leaders while they are on American soil…”

The “threat…remains active.” A Hollywood-style cloak and dagger scenario followed, saying:

Last month, when a “Defense Department leader left the Pentagon…in a government-owned black SUV driven by a member of his security detail…an unknown vehicle immediately began to follow them…”

“The driver, identified as an Iranian national, was in a vehicle with Virginia license plates and trailed closely behind the official SUV for five to seven miles…”

“The Pentagon and the FBI disagree about whether it was a serious attempt to target a senior Defense Department leader…”

According to an FBI probe, the above “was not part of any larger threat to senior military leaders or connected directly back to Iran…”

In other words, the above scenario smacks of fake news that surfaces repeatedly against nations on the US target list for regime change — notably Russia, China and Iran.

In its report, NBC cited no sources by name. Nor was any evidence presented to suggest an Iranian threat against any US officials domestically or abroad.

Throughout Islamic Republic history since 1979, Iran never attacked another country or its officials preemptively.

It justifiably acted in self-defense when attacked as the UN Charter and other international law permit.

In stark contrast, the US, NATO, Israel, and their imperial partners committed acts of aggression against targeted nations time and again.

Since creation of the Jewish state, it’s been perpetually at war on Palestinians by hot and other means — with full US-led Western support.

Iran supports peace, stability, cooperative relations with other countries and the rule of law.

The nation, its government, and military pose no threat to any other countries and their officials — except in self-defense if attacked, the legal right of all nation states.

A Final Comment

NBC News said key congressional members were not  briefed on the alleged incident.

“The White House declined to comment, including on whether President Donald Trump was briefed…”

The above anti-Iran accusation lacks credibility.

Why brief the White House and congressional leaders on what no evidence exists to prove the above scenario.

*

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Award-winning author Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at lendmanstephen@sbcglobal.net. He is a Research Associate of the Centre for Research on Globalization (CRG)

His new book as editor and contributor is titled “Flashpoint in Ukraine: US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III.”

http://www.claritypress.com/LendmanIII.html

Visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com.

Tucker: Media hates Trump with an all-consuming mania

October 31, 2020

Has the US been chastised into reform, or is 4 more years of Trump needed?

Monday, 26 October 2020 9:25 AM  [ Last Update: Tuesday, 27 October 2020 5:30 AM ]

US Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) (L) talks with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) during a rally with fellow Democrats before voting on H.R. 1, or the People Act, on the East Steps of the US Capitol on March 08, 2019 in Washington, DC. (AFP photo)
US President Donald Trump leaves the polling station after casting his ballot at the Palm Beach County Public Library, during early voting for the November 3 election, in West Palm Beach, Florida, on October 24, 2020. (Photo by AFP)

Has the US been chastised into reform, or is 4 more years of Trump needed?

By Ramin Mazaheri

Ramin Mazaheri is currently covering the US elections. He is the chief correspondent in Paris for PressTV and has lived in France since 2009. He has been a daily newspaper reporter in the US, and has reported from Iran, Cuba, Egypt, Tunisia, South Korea and elsewhere. He is the author of ‘Socialism’s Ignored Success: Iranian Islamic Socialism’as well as ‘I’ll Ruin Everything You Are: Ending Western Propaganda on Red China’, which is also available in simplified and traditional Chinese.

There is a world of difference between “make it stop” and “make it change”, no?

In 2016 we all knew that a Trump victory would undoubtedly be terrible for Iran, Cuba and Palestine – that has been proven true.

However, being a “one-issue voter” is never advisable, but especially for those voting in the country which has more global influence than any other.

The question for those in those three countries is this: why would a victory by Joe Biden herald a major change in US policy – not merely a change from post-2016 policy, but from the United States’ policy since 1979, 1959 or 1948?

Trump-era sanctions are illegal, inhumane and war, indeed, but it would be overreaction to say they were something altogether new. Washington’s policy towards all three of these nations – undoubtedly the martyrs of the international community – has been the unbroken same for many decades: destruction of the patriotic leadership elements in those countries. (However, Palestinians can accurately add that supporting total genocide against all Palestinians is also an undeniably clear policy of Washington.)

Why would Biden reverse these policies? A temporary relenting is not a reversal.

Is not reversal the goal, or is merely “less worse” the democratic majority desire in these three nations as regards their foreign policy with America?

Worryingly, it should be assumed that Biden would certainly be more successful in galvanising Western support for “new” Iranian sections than Trump, who alienated America’s allies, if Biden chose to do so. What if these sanctions are thus even more comprehensive than the Trump era’s “US alone” sanctions?

When it comes to these three anti-imperialism-championing, leftist-inspired nations we must consider the “hope” aspect – Barack Obama won on this idea precisely because it is so critical to consider: is it possible that a Trump finally freed of election concerns could perhaps do what he was elected to do in 2016 – break with the Washington “Swamp” and all of its horrors and murders?

The world notes that Trump is – without question – the least belligerent elected president in the modern era (Gerald Ford was not elected). Considering that prior to WWII the US was still engaged in wars of imperialism in North America and beyond, and also that prior to the Civil War the US was engaged in slavery, it is not an exaggeration to say that Trump has been one of America’s least foreign-warmongering presidents. This sounds preposterous, but American history is an unbroken line of preposterous, imperialist brutality – denying that is inaccurate.

Therefore, it’s reasonable to consider that a Trump freed of election concerns, and also of trying to win over the Washington establishment, could allow his anti-belligerent tendencies to take over. Trump is not a military man, but a business man. The idea that Biden could possibly have a “Nixon moment” with Iran is absolutely out of the question – he is completely an establishment man. Indeed, this reality is the foundation of his presidential campaign – a return to “normalcy”.

But the US establishment is totally anti-Iranian Islamic Revolution, anti-Islamic conceptions of capitalism, and anti-Iranian resistance to Western invasion and imperialism. In a system dominated by lobby interests, there is absolutely no “pro-Iran” lobby and to think there is would be to misunderstand America.

The concern is that those outside of and unfamiliar with America do not understand these realities; that there are still those who think Obama was truly worthy of a Nobel Peace Prize; that think Democrats are lenient towards to the world even though they spearheaded the destruction of Yugoslavia, Libya, Honduras, Haiti, Ukraine etc. and etc. It is like a a household with two very unpleasant daughters: the family always says, “That one is the easy-going one”, when in reality she is still very unpleasant when compared with normal standards of comportment.

There is absolutely no way Biden would engineer a “Nixon moment” of (not rapprochement but) detente with Iran. Therefore, the question to ask is: are the 2016-era sanctions so bad that Iran has to throw in the towel, and not take a chance on the most successful anti-establishment candidate in the US since Andrew Jackson?

Part 2: Why would anyone, anywhere wish for the very unpleasant Washington establishment to remain in complete control?

We have established that Biden may only slightly lessen, but never end, the four decades of sanctions on Iran. About Trump – we simply cannot be so sure.

Trump, thus, is the “hope” candidate. Trump doesn’t have a real ideology, we have learned since 2016 – he’s not a real Zionist, any more than he’s a real Christian, any more than he’s a real Republican – he is a selfish business man, and that is it. These people ruin the world, but can also build great things. 

That’s the same question Americans considering voting for Trump are asking: are things so bad that the only way to advance is via retreat – i.e. four more years of the astoundingly upsetting (the French “bouleversement” is so much more accurate) Trump presidency?

Turning to America’s domestic situation: they are in a catastrophe on top of a catastrophe, i.e. the 2020 coronavirus recession is being added to the 2008 Great Recession.

The election media circus does not focus on this – they instead create nonsense like Iranians posing as “Proud Boys” and mail-in ballot hysteria – but if you are in the US and talking to people you only hear from Americans about how truly bad things are in ways totally unrelated to the election.

Visitors from Iran cannot believe their eyes when they see the US – this country is in disrepair, is technologically behind in many ways, and is in jaw-droppingly bad physical and social health (putting aside more subjective questions of moral and mental health).

How on earth can we explain the 2020 continued success and resonance of Trump, who in the 2nd debate kept reminding voters of why he won in 2016: the staggering corruption of the US political establishment, of which he is not completely a part of?

He knows that the US public has as many reasons to subvert the US political establishment as the Iranian public has: the most basic, and necessary, examination of the situation via this lens of class tells us that – of course – both publics greatly suffer under the brutality of the unwanted capitalism-imperialism foisted by the 1%.

Furthermore, we should expect that the factions thwarted in 2016 would impose even further safeguards to their power to make sure another Trump cannot happen again.

Trump has pushed things to the right, indeed, but nobody more so than the US establishment and 1%: this couldn’t be more in evidence thanks to how even the Democrats have embraced the CIA & FBI, Twitter/Facebook censorship, QE policies which keep their rich donor classes happy, and how this class demands Trump be even more warlike and employ even more policies which many used to only associate with American conservatives. The American Democrat is no leftist.

But the delusion is believing that far-right policies – both at home and abroad regarding places like Iran – started with Trump. American Democrats may believe that nonsense, but it’s vital that the world has a memory which stretches back just a mere five years. A Biden victory would immediately allow the US to sweep under the rug and to scapegoat the nation’s pre-2016 problems on Trump – many American voters will not tolerate that, as they want immediate changes to the long-running status quo.

Who knows what a second Trump presidency would do? This is both hope and risk. And as Biden said in the second election: “You know who I am” – indeed. 

What the world and the US public wants is obvious: mutually-beneficial cooperation, which is not necessarily excluded in capitalism, but it is excluded in “capitalism with Western characteristics”. “Trump term 1” was against free-trade, neoliberal capitalism-imperialism: would “Trump term 2” push aside the New York City financial elite and insist on concluding mutually-beneficial business deals which don’t have to be signed at the barrel-end of a US gun?

It’s so very, very hard to believe, but US Congresspeople spend 70% of their work day fundraising. What a terrible system, no? This explains how Americans get such poor governance – they are not occupied with the business of public service.

I think it’s fair to point out that Trump has done the same since 2016 in order to win re-election: he has spent 70% of his time complying with and being bogged down by establishment nonsense – Russophobia, a useless impeachment drive, a hostile media, etc. What would he do if he was freed from this, and given free rein to use the executive branch powers for actual policy which bypassed the Swamp? We don’t know, because we have never seen such a US president.

The question is this: does a Trump freed from re-election concerns, and confident of his mandate, still continue to turn his back on the patriotic populism which his voters expected, or do we see something even more spectacularly upsetting to the US establishment than what we have seen the past four years?

We do know Biden will re-chart the American course for Obama’s “pivot to Asia” and all the other usual capitalist-imperialist belligerence. Regarding the influence of Bernie Sanders and the fake-leftistm America has recently mustered: please don’t make me laugh at the idea that in 2021 they will be handed top cabinet posts and actual influence.

But a vote for Biden implicitly implies that the US has learned much since 2016 and will reform and correct themselves; that Biden is not an establishment man, as I asserted, but something new. To put it in Trumpian campaign terms: Biden the public servant in year 48 will be different than Biden the public servant years 1-47. Conversion, rebirth, epiphany – these are all real things, certainly, and nowhere more so perhaps than in evangelical Christian-dominated America.

But we must also remember that, as the European Union proves, Western “neo-imperialism” includes the colonisation of the Western public by an unpatriotic, international 1%. Biden is undoubtedly neoliberal and neo-imperial – Trump is… something else, no? (One cannot be anti-free trade and still neoliberal, after all.)

Thus the “hope” choice in this election is not “for” Trump – it is “anti”-US establishment, and that goes for those abroad as well as domestically.

This article does not promote Trump but merely seeks to explain his popularity, as the Western mainstream media cannot do anything but support their establishment, of course. Biden voters are “holding their nose” and voting for a candidate they don’t like – one is wrong to assume that Trump supporters aren’t doing the exact same.


Press TV’s website can also be accessed at the following alternate addresses:

www.presstv.ir

www.presstv.co.uk

www.presstv.tv

October 26, 2020

Make America Jeffersonian Again

Make America Jeffersonian Again

October 23, 2020

by Pepe Escobar with permission and first posted at Asia Times

The whole planet has every reason to be terminally puzzled at how all those lofty Enlightenment ideals Thomas Jefferson embedded in the 1776 Declaration of Independence ended up with…Trump vs. Biden.

Jefferson borrowed freely from Locke, Rousseau, Hume to come up with an eminently quotable Greatest Hits, featuring “self-evident” truths such as “all men are created equal”, “unalienable rights”, and that searing “life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.”

Well, Baudrillard would have dubbed the exercise a mere simulacrum, because in real life none of this uplifting rhetoric applied to Native Americans and enslaved Africans.

Still, there’s something endlessly fascinating about these “self-evident truths”. They actually radiated like Spinoza axioms, spawning abstract truths that can be extrapolated at will. Jefferson’s “self-evident truths” ended up creating the whole, massive structure of what we define as “Western liberal democracy”.

So it’s no wonder that America – perennially self-described as “leader of the free world” – consider these “self-evident truths” as the basis of an ideal society.

And it’s this messianic river of fervent truth flowing out of a Himalaya of Morality that leads Americans to dismiss as “malign actors” every nation or society that is judged to be “deviating” from such obvious evidence.

Those damned furreners. They’re always up to no good.

Cut to a mini-remix of the last Trump-Biden presidential debate. In foreign policy terms, it went something like this.

The moderator is desperate to move on as she’s very much aware of time constraints and looming, incandescent clashes: “Now I want to move on to Defense. It’s established Russia and China are interfering in our election process…”

Here’s classic “self-evident truth” material, delivered according to strict Council on Foreign Relations guidelines.

Cut to Biden: any country that interferes with the American elections “will pay a price”. Russia’s “been involved, China has been involved to some degree, and Iran’s been involved.” They are interfering with “American sovereignty”. Rudy Giuliani was used “as a Russian pawn”. Trump is “unwilling” to confront Putin. Russia has “destabilized NATO” and is “paying bounties to kill Americans in Afghanistan.” And China “has to play by the rules” – or else.

Cut to Trump: “You mean the laptop from hell is another Russia, Russia, Russia hoax?”

For the record: Joe Biden did blame the contents of son Hunter’s laptop from hell on Russia.

And discussing North Korea, when Trump said he got along fine with Kim Jong-Un, Biden stated, “We had a good relationship with Hitler before he invaded Europe.” Incidentally, Germany is and remains in Europe. And it’s quite something to see Biden acknowledging in public proven US industrial and political support to Nazism.

Those damn furreners

So, inevitably, the laptop from hell had to show up.

The FBI had Hunter Biden’s laptop since December 2019 – as it had issued a subpoena for it in the first place. And yet the FBI sat on the laptop for 11 months doing nothing.

That must have given plenty of time for those pesky Russians to steal the laptop and plant incriminating evidence.

Well, not really. The FBI was busy mulling how to conduct an investigation on “money laundering”. And not on child porn – which, according to Giuliani, is the piece de resistance in the laptop. No one knows if these alleged “investigations” are ongoing.

Now, the FBI and the Department of Justice have finally “concurred”: Hunter Biden’s laptop and emails were not part of a Russian disinformation campaign – directly contradicting what Joe Biden said in the debate.

But then, right before the debate, a bombshell presser – including the FBI and Homeland Security – had announced those pesky Russians and Iranians were in fact “trying to influence opinion” on the US elections.

“Self-evident truths” were back with a bang.

One can’t make this stuff up. And it gets even murkier when the actual “election interference” may be coming from inside the US, not from those damn furreners.

This past summer, the Transition Integrity Project (TIP) war-gamed possible scenarios post-November 3. All the scenarios lead to a huge constitutional crisis – forced, as part of the premise, by Trump’s refusal to concede his defeat at the polls.

TIP, predictably, is a proverbial Beltway bubble, composed of assorted Democratic Party higher-ups, Clintonistas, Obamistas and neo-con Never Trumpers.

Their message is now widely accepted as another avatar of “self-evident truths” because of this group’s powerful grip over Anglo-American mainstream media. Reverberations may be seen, for instance, herehere and here.

So the preferred doomsday scenario ahead spells out an engineered unresolved election, wide socio-political chaos, “continuity of government” protocols, even martial law.

What’s “life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness” got to do with it?

USA SITREP: FBI indicted Russian trombone player as a “GRU hacker”

October 20, 2020

By Lilia Shumkova, a Moscow based independent journalist, for The Saker Blog

A federal grand jury sitting in the Western District of the US state of Pennsylvania without citing any laws domestic or international, basing it’s decision purely on an opaque act of “violation of accepted norms” indited six Russian citizens. All six, as the FBI Deputy Director David Bowdich claims, are Russian military intelligence officers and their “crimes” go back to 2015.

In Russia, people immediately went on searching for any information about named individuals and they truly dug up something interesting about one of those indited, YURIY SERGEYEVICH ANDRIENKO.

https://www.fbi.gov/wanted/cyber/yuriy-sergeyevich-andrienko

A Russian citizen born in Minsk, says the indictment, he is a GRU officer. “Andrienko is alleged to have been a Russian military intelligence officer, assigned to Unit 74455. He was last known to be located in Moscow, Russia.” He is being accused by the Pennsylvania judges in “Conspiracy to Commit an Offense Against the United States; False Registration of a Domain Name; Conspiracy to Commit Wire Fraud; Wire Fraud; Intentional Damage to Protected Computers; Aggravated Identity Theft.”

According to the liberal radio Komsomolskaya Pravda, a group of bloggers decided to find these “cybercriminals” using the Findface service.

https://brl.mk.ru/politics/2020/10/20/yuriy-ili-mikhail-belorusa-ili-barnaulca-obvinila-amerika-v-khakerskikh-atakakh.html

According to their search for Yuri’s photo, the service most likely gives out the pages of Barnaul based trombonist Mikhail Nekhoroshev, who graduated from AGIK or the Altai Academy of Culture and Arts, who used to play in the military orchestras and over the past couple of years performs in bars with live music

https://www.agik22.ru/

The closest Mikhail Nekhoroshev came to the Russian Army was while playing his trombone in the military orchestra, see his vKontakte profile. See, Mikhail Nekhoroshev

https://vk.com/id103503697

Images from Mikhail Nekhoroshev’s vKontakte profile

It’s not clear how a provincial musician could “break” the world internet, but now we know that Russophobic Pennsylvania judges would indite an imaginary ham sandwich claiming it came from Russia.

What’s obvious from this glaring example of malicious prosecution and legal malpractice, the FBI just makes up persons to claim that they commit crimes all over the world by grabbing random images of random Russian people off the net.

You can be the judge and see that the musician Mikhail Nekhoroshev is the person on the FBI most wanted list.

Has a trombone player pockets deep enough to battle the FBI’s frivolous accusation in the US court? Doubtful. What would happen if this innocent man travels abroad? He will undoubtedly be arrested, handed to the US, convicted in fairy-tale made-up crimes and sentenced to life in American prison. Russian Foreign Ministry previously stated that the US is conducting a hunt of Russians all over the world, and Washington seems to pay no price for their kidnapping and human trafficking across state borders.

Why the FBI and CIA Are the Real Threats to “National Security”

‘My name is Nancy Pelosi, and I’m currently holding on’

October 19, 2020

By Cynthia Chung for the Saker Blog

Today we see the continuation of the over seven decade’s long ruse, the targeting of individuals as Russian agents without any basis, in order to remove them from the political arena. The present effort to declassify the Russiagate papers and exonerate Michael Flynn, so that he may freely speak of the intelligence he knows, is not a threat to national security, it is a threat to those who have committed treason against their country.

On Oct. 6th, 2020, President Trump ordered the declassification of the Russia Probe documents along with the classified documents on the findings concerning the Hillary Clinton emails. The release of these documents threatens to expose the entrapment of the Trump campaign by the Clinton campaign with help of the US intelligence agencies.

The Director of National Intelligence John Ratcliffe released some of these documents recently, including former CIA Director John Brennan’s handwritten notes for a meeting with former President Obama, the notes revealing that Hillary Clinton approved a plan to “vilify Donald Trump by stirring up scandal claiming interference by the Russian security service.”

Trey Gowdy, who was Chair of the House Oversight Committee from June 13th, 2017 – Jan. 3rd, 2019, has stated in an interview on Oct. 7th, 2020 that he has never seen these documents. Devin Nunes, who was Chair of the House Intelligence Committee from Jan. 3rd, 2015 – Jan. 3rd, 2019, has also said in a recent interview that he has never seen these documents.

And yet, both the FBI and CIA were aware and had access to these documents and sat on them for four years, withholding their release from several government-led investigations that were looking into the Russiagate scandal and who were requesting relevant material that was in the possession of both intelligence bureaus.

Do these intelligence bureaus sound like they are working for the “national security” of the American people?

The CIA’s Long Battle against “Soviet propaganda”

In order to combat the “threat” of Soviet “propaganda” entering the U.S. and seducing Americans, Operation Mockingbird was created as a form of “control” over information dissemination during the period of McCarthyism. Operation Mockingbird was an “alleged” CIA program that was started in the early 1950s in order to control the narrative of the news. Though this role has never been confirmed entirely, in the CIA Family Jewels report compiled in the mid-1970s, it is confirmed that Project Mockingbird did exist as a CIA operation and that it was guilty of wire-tapping journalists in Washington.

At the helm of this project was none other than CIA Director Allen Dulles, an enemy of JFK, who by the early 1950s “allegedly” oversaw the media network and had major influence over 25 newspapers and wire agencies. Its function was to have the CIA write reports that would be used by a network of cooperating “credible” reporters. By these “credible” reporters spreading the CIA dictated narrative, it would be parroted by unwitting reporters (mockingbirds) and a successful echo chamber would be created across the world.

The Office of Policy Coordination (OPC), originally named Office of Special Projects but that was thought too conspicuous, was a covert operation wing of the CIA and was created by the United States National Security Council (NSC). For those who are unfamiliar with the origins of the NSC and its close relationship with the CIA, who was born on the same day, refer to my paper on the subject.

According to Deborah Davis’ biography of Katherine Graham (the owner of Washington Post), the OPC created Operation Mockingbird in response to addressing Soviet propaganda and included as part of its CIA contingency respected members from Washington Post, The New York Times, Newsweek, CBS and others.

The Family Jewels report was an investigation made by the CIA to investigate…the CIA, spurred in response to the Watergate Scandal and the CIA’s unconstitutional role in the whole affair. The investigation of the CIA would include any other actions that were deemed illegal or inappropriate spanning from the 1950s-mid 1970s.

We are told “most” of the report was declassified on June 25, 2007 (30 years later) hoping that people would have lost interest in the whole brouhaha. Along with the release of the redacted report was included a six-page summary with the following introduction:

The Central Intelligence Agency violated its charter for 25 years until revelations of illegal wiretapping, domestic surveillance, assassination plots, and human experimentation led to official investigations and reforms in the 1970s.” [emphasis added]

The most extensive investigation of the CIA relations with news media was conducted by the Church Committee, a U.S. Senate select committee in 1975 that investigated the abuses committed by the CIA, NSA, FBI, and IRS. The Church Committee report confirmed abundant CIA ties in both foreign and domestic news media.

It is very useful that there exists an official recognition that false news was not only being encouraged by the CIA under the overseeing of the NSC during the Cold War period, but that the CIA was complicit in actually detailing the specific narrative that they wanted disseminated, and often going so far as to write the narrative and have a “credible” reporter’s name stamped on it.

But the question begs, “Did the Cold War ever end?” and if not, why should we believe that the CIA’s involvement in such activities is buried in its past and that it has “reformed” its old ways?

Henry Kissinger’s Purge of American Intelligence: The Deep State is Born

For us to get a better understanding of how we ended up in this situation, that is so stark that Devin Nunes, the ranking member of the House Intelligence Committee, has recently stated that the intelligence bureaus may need to be overhauled due to withholding evidence from federal inquiries, we need to go back a few decades and review how Henry Kissinger largely set this whole affair into motion.

From the moment Kissinger assumed the post of National Security Advisor to Nixon, he set out to centralize all intelligence estimates, diplomatic initiatives, and covert operations over figuratively and sometimes literal dead bodies of members of the CIA, Joint Chiefs of Staff, State Department and Congress.

According to John Ranelagh in his book The Agency: The Rise and Decline of the CIA:

Very early in the Nixon administration, it became clear that the President wanted Henry Kissinger to run intelligence for him and that the NSC staff in the White House under Kissinger would control the intelligence community. This was the beginning of a shift of power away from the CIA to a new center: the growing NSC staff.”

Kissinger would use the Watergate scandal, where the CIA was caught by Congress directly implicated in treasonous activities, as the impetus needed to form a new CIA, a secret branch away from the scrutiny of Congress.

In 1978, Kissinger would launch the Intelligence Reorganization and Reform Act, which essentially worked to “clean house” of the intelligence community.

In 1982, under the direction of Kissinger, President Reagan would sign NSDD 77 under Cold War duress, which would launch Project Democracy, a sardonic name for a Trojan Horse.

NSDD 77 allowed Project Democracy the reins over “covert action on a broad scale” as well as overt public actions later to be associated with the National Endowment for Democracy (NED). The directive ordered the CIA to stay out of both the overt and covert part of Project Democracy, thus giving free reign to the Kissingerian “NSC apparatus”.

Almost one year later, the uninformed and naïve Congress passed the NED Act in Oct 1983, and effectively signed off on wrapping duct tape around their heads.

The structure of the NED essentially functions as a private CIA political operations arm of an invisible, secret government beyond accountability and beyond the reach of the law.

Kissinger’s purge of American intelligence would be the last purge of sane patriotic leadership within the intelligence community, left to the hyenas and jackals to run from thenceforth, those who still had a degree of humanity as members of the intelligence community, and had survived the Kissinger purge, were simply kept in the dark about the cloak and dagger operations of the secret government branch.

In a 1991 interview, then NED President David Ignatius arrogantly stated “a lot of what we do today was done covertly 25 years ago by the CIA…The biggest difference is that when such activities are done overtly, the flap potential is close to zero. Openness is its own protection”.

The failure of the nation state is not a natural phenomenon but rather is the outcome of a fascist coup; involving a banker’s dictatorshipeconomic looting and permanent warfare (the Cold War never ended) to hinder national industrial growth.

Among the most effective strategies towards this end has been color revolutions, which just so happens to be the NED’s specialty practice and has included, to name a few, the nations of Yugoslavia, Belarus, Georgia, Iraq, Lebanon, Burma, Iran, Egypt, Thailand, Ukraine and the Hong Kong protests.

Wherever this strategy has unfolded, the target state is told by the international community that it has no right to intervene and is told to stand by as its nation is ransacked by locusts and its government ‘reorganised’.

Secret Intelligence’s Countering of “Anti-American” Propaganda

The Countering Foreign Propaganda and Disinformation Act is a bipartisan bill that was passed into law in December 2016, it was initially called Countering Information Warfare Act. It was included together with the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA). This bill was brought into effect just weeks before Trump was to enter office….hmmm, foreshadowing much?

Soon after the 2016 U.S. election, the Washington Post led the charge asserting that it was due to Russian propaganda that the U.S. elections turned out the way it did, that is, that Hillary had somehow, inconceivably, lost to Donald Trump and that the American people had been turned against her like a child caught in the middle of a messy divorce case. But there is no need here to set the record straight on Hillary, when Hillary herself has done suffice damage to any illusion of credibility she once had. That ultimately not even Hillary could hide the fact that her closet full of skeletons turned out to be the size of a catacomb.

But we are told that citizens do not know what is best for one’s self. That they cannot be trusted with “sensitive” information and in accordance act in a “responsible” manner, that is, to have a strong enough stomach to do what is “best” for their country.

And therefore, fear not subjects of the land, for the Global Engagement Center (GEC) is here to make those hard decisions for you. Don’t know what to think about a complicated subject? GEC will tell you the right way!

The National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) would allow for the Secretary of State to collaborate with the Secretary of Defense, and other Federal agencies in the year 2017 to create the Global Engagement Center (GEC). The GEC’s purpose in life is to fight propaganda from foreign governments and publicize the nature of ongoing foreign propaganda and disinformation operations against the U.S. and other countries.

Let us all take a moment to thank the GEC for such a massive task in the cause for justice all around the world.

The GEC had a very slow start in its first year, however, it has been gaining momentum in the last year under Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, who seems especially excited over the hiring of Lea Gabrielle as special envoy and coordinator of GEC.

Mike Pompeo was the CIA Director from 2017-2018. On April 15, 2019, Pompeo participated in a discussion at the Texas A&M University where he voluntarily offered the admission that though West Points’ cadet motto is “You will not lie, cheat, or steal, or tolerate those who do.”, his training under the CIA was the very opposite, stating “I was the CIA Director. We lied, we cheated, we stole. It was like we had entire training courses. (long pause) It reminds you of the glory of the American experiment”.

This is apparently the man for the job of dealing with matters of “truth” and “justice”.

Lea Gabrielle was approved for her position by Mike Pompeo, what are her “qualifications”? Well, Gabrielle is also CIA trained, and while assigned to the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA), she “directed and conducted global clandestine strategic intelligence collection operations.” Gabrielle also “deployed in tactical anti-terrorist operations in hostile environments”. After 12 years of active duty service, Lea Gabrielle became a television news journalist, who worked at NBC and FOX News.

The CIA really does not have the best track record for their role in “managing” foreign wars and counter-insurgency activities. In fact, they have been caught rather red handed in fueling such crisis situations. And these are the people who are deciding what information is fit for the American public, and western public in general, and what is not fit for their ears.

When the Matter of “Truth” Becomes a Threat to “National Security”

When the matter of truth is depicted as a possible threat to those that govern a country, you no longer have a democratic state. True, not everything can be disclosed to the public in real time, but we are sitting on a mountain of classified intelligence material that goes back more than 60 years.

How much time needs to elapse before the American people have the right to know the truth behind what their government agencies have been doing within their own country and abroad in the name of the “free” world?

From this recognition, the whole matter of declassifying material around the Russigate scandal in real time, and not highly redacted 50 years from now, is essential to addressing this festering putrefaction that has been bubbling over since the heinous assassination of President Kennedy on Nov. 22nd, 1963 and to which we are still waiting for full disclosure of classified papers 57 years later.

If the American people really want to finally see who is standing behind that curtain in Oz, now is the time.

These intelligence bureaus need to be reviewed for what kind of method and standard they are upholding in collecting their “intelligence,” that has supposedly justified the Mueller investigation and the never-ending Flynn investigation which have provided zero conclusive evidence to back up their allegations and which have massively infringed on the elected government’s ability to make the changes that they had committed to the American people.

Just like the Iraq and Libya war that was based off of cooked British intelligence (refer here and here), Russiagate appears to have also had its impetus from our friends over at MI6 as well. It is no surprise that Sir Richard Dearlove, who was then MI6 chief (1999-2004) and who oversaw and stood by the fraudulent intelligence on Iraq stating they bought uranium from Niger to build a nuclear weapon, is the very same Sir Richard Dearlove who promoted the Christopher Steele dossier as something “credible” to American intelligence.

In other words, the same man who is largely responsible for encouraging the illegal invasion of Iraq, which set off the never-ending wars on “terror,” that was justified with cooked British intelligence is also responsible for encouraging the Russian spook witch-hunt that has been occurring within the U.S. for the last four years…over more cooked British intelligence, and the FBI and CIA are knowingly complicit in this.

Neither the American people, nor the world as a whole, can afford to suffer any more of the so-called “mistaken” intelligence bumblings. It is time that these intelligence bureaus are held accountable for at best criminal negligence, at worst, treason against their own country.


Cynthia Chung writes for Strategic Culture Foundation and is the President and co-founder of the Rising Tide Foundation

The author can be reached at cynthiachung@tutanota.com

John Lennon at 80: One Man Against the Deep State ‘Monster’

By John Whitehead

Source

“You gotta remember, establishment, it’s just a name for evil. The monster doesn’t care whether it kills all the students or whether there’s a revolution. It’s not thinking logically, it’s out of control.”—John Lennon (1969)

John Lennon, born 80 years ago on October 9, 1940, was a musical genius and pop cultural icon.

He was also a vocal peace protester and anti-war activist, and a high-profile example of the lengths to which the Deep State will go to persecute those who dare to challenge its authority.

Long before Julian Assange, Edward Snowden and Chelsea Manning were being castigated for blowing the whistle on the government’s war crimes and the National Security Agency’s abuse of its surveillance powers, it was Lennon who was being singled out for daring to speak truth to power about the government’s warmongering, his phone calls monitored and data files illegally collected on his activities and associations.

For a while, at least, Lennon became enemy number one in the eyes of the U.S. government.

Years after Lennon’s assassination it would be revealed that the FBI had collected 281 pages of files on him, including song lyrics. J. Edgar Hoover, head of the FBI at the time, directed the agency to spy on the musician. There were also various written orders calling on government agents to frame Lennon for a drug bust. “The FBI’s files on Lennon … read like the writings of a paranoid goody-two-shoes,” observed reporter Jonathan Curiel.

Document with portions of text blacked out, dated 1972.

Confidential (here declassified and censored) letter by J. Edgar Hoover about FBI surveillance of John Lennon (Public Domain)

As the New York Times notes, “Critics of today’s domestic surveillance object largely on privacy grounds. They have focused far less on how easily government surveillance can become an instrument for the people in power to try to hold on to power. ‘The U.S. vs. John Lennon’ … is the story not only of one man being harassed, but of a democracy being undermined.”

Indeed, all of the many complaints we have about government today—surveillance, militarism, corruption, harassment, SWAT team raids, political persecution, spying, overcriminalization, etc.—were present in Lennon’s day and formed the basis of his call for social justice, peace and a populist revolution.

For all of these reasons, the U.S. government was obsessed with Lennon, who had learned early on that rock music could serve a political end by proclaiming a radical message. More importantly, Lennon saw that his music could mobilize the public and help to bring about change. Lennon believed in the power of the people. Unfortunately, as Lennon recognized: “The trouble with government as it is, is that it doesn’t represent the people. It controls them.”

However, as Martin Lewis writing for Time notes: “John Lennon was not God. But he earned the love and admiration of his generation by creating a huge body of work that inspired and led. The appreciation for him deepened because he then instinctively decided to use his celebrity as a bully pulpit for causes greater than his own enrichment or self-aggrandizement.”

For instance, in December 1971 at a concert in Ann Arbor, Mich., Lennon took to the stage and in his usual confrontational style belted out “John Sinclair,” a song he had written about a man sentenced to 10 years in prison for possessing two marijuana cigarettes. Within days of Lennon’s call for action, the Michigan Supreme Court ordered Sinclair released.

What Lennon did not know at the time was that government officials had been keeping strict tabs on the ex-Beatle they referred to as “Mr. Lennon.” Incredibly, FBI agents were in the audience at the Ann Arbor concert, “taking notes on everything from the attendance (15,000) to the artistic merits of his new song.”

The U.S. government, steeped in paranoia, was spying on Lennon.

By March 1971, when his “Power to the People” single was released, it was clear where Lennon stood. Having moved to New York City that same year, Lennon was ready to participate in political activism against the U. S. government, the “monster” that was financing the war in Vietnam.

The release of Lennon’s Sometime in New York City album, which contained a radical anti-government message in virtually every song and depicted President Richard Nixon and Chinese Chairman Mao Tse-tung dancing together nude on the cover, only fanned the flames of the conflict to come.

The official U.S. war against Lennon began in earnest in 1972 after rumors surfaced that Lennon planned to embark on a U.S. concert tour that would combine rock music with antiwar organizing and voter registration. Nixon, fearing Lennon’s influence on about 11 million new voters (1972 was the first year that 18-year-olds could vote), had the ex-Beatle served with deportation orders “in an effort to silence him as a voice of the peace movement.”

Then again, the FBI has had a long history of persecuting, prosecuting and generally harassing activists, politicians, and cultural figures. Most notably among the latter are such celebrated names as folk singer Pete Seeger, painter Pablo Picasso, comic actor and filmmaker Charlie Chaplin, comedian Lenny Bruce and poet Allen Ginsberg.

Among those most closely watched by the FBI was Martin Luther King Jr., a man labeled by the FBI as “the most dangerous and effective Negro leader in the country.” With wiretaps and electronic bugs planted in his home and office, King was kept under constant surveillance by the FBI with the aim of “neutralizing” him. He even received letters written by FBI agents suggesting that he either commit suicide or the details of his private life would be revealed to the public. The FBI kept up its pursuit of King until he was felled by a hollow-point bullet to the head in 1968.

Lennon and Ono sit in front of flowers and placards bearing the word "peace." Lennon is only partly visible, and he holds an acoustic guitar. Ono wears a white dress, and there is a hanging microphone in front of her. In the foreground of the image are three men, one of them a guitarist facing away, and a woman.

Recording “Give Peace a Chance” during the Bed-In for Peace at the Queen Elizabeth Hotel, Montreal (CC BY 2.5/Roy Kerwood)

While Lennon was not—as far as we know—being blackmailed into suicide, he was the subject of a four-year campaign of surveillance and harassment by the U.S. government (spearheaded by FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover), an attempt by President Richard Nixon to have him “neutralized” and deported. As Adam Cohen of the New York Times points out, “The F.B.I.’s surveillance of Lennon is a reminder of how easily domestic spying can become unmoored from any legitimate law enforcement purpose. What is more surprising, and ultimately more unsettling, is the degree to which the surveillance turns out to have been intertwined with electoral politics.”

As Lennon’s FBI file shows, memos and reports about the FBI’s surveillance of the anti-war activist had been flying back and forth between Hoover, the Nixon White House, various senators, the FBI and the U.S. Immigration Office.

Nixon’s pursuit of Lennon was relentless and in large part based on the misperception that Lennon and his comrades were planning to disrupt the 1972 Republican National Convention. The government’s paranoia, however, was misplaced.

Left-wing activists who were on government watch lists and who shared an interest in bringing down the Nixon Administration had been congregating at Lennon’s New York apartment. But when they revealed that they were planning to cause a riot, Lennon balked. As he recounted in a 1980 interview, “We said, We ain’t buying this. We’re not going to draw children into a situation to create violence so you can overthrow what? And replace it with what? . . . It was all based on this illusion, that you can create violence and overthrow what is, and get communism or get some right-wing lunatic or a left-wing lunatic. They’re all lunatics.”

Despite the fact that Lennon was not part of the “lunatic” plot, the government persisted in its efforts to have him deported. Equally determined to resist, Lennon dug in and fought back. Every time he was ordered out of the country, his lawyers delayed the process by filing an appeal. Finally, in 1976, Lennon won the battle to stay in the country when he was granted a green card. As he said afterwards, “I have a love for this country…. This is where the action is. I think we’ll just go home, open a tea bag, and look at each other.”

Lennon’s time of repose didn’t last long, however. By 1980, he had re-emerged with a new album and plans to become politically active again.

The old radical was back and ready to cause trouble. In his final interview on Dec. 8, 1980, Lennon mused, “The whole map’s changed and we’re going into an unknown future, but we’re still all here, and while there’s life there’s hope.”

The Deep State has a way of dealing with troublemakers, unfortunately. On Dec. 8, 1980, Mark David Chapman was waiting in the shadows when Lennon returned to his New York apartment building. As Lennon stepped outside the car to greet the fans congregating outside, Chapman, in an eerie echo of the FBI’s moniker for Lennon, called out, “Mr. Lennon!”

Lennon turned and was met with a barrage of gunfire as Chapman—dropping into a two-handed combat stance—emptied his .38-caliber pistol and pumped four hollow-point bullets into his back and left arm. Lennon stumbled, staggered forward and, with blood pouring from his mouth and chest, collapsed to the ground.

John Lennon was pronounced dead on arrival at the hospital. He had finally been “neutralized.”

Yet where those who neutralized the likes of John Lennon, Martin Luther King Jr., John F. Kennedy, Malcolm X, Robert Kennedy and others go wrong is in believing that you can murder a movement with a bullet and a madman.

Lennon and Ono performing at the John Sinclair Freedom Rally in December 1971 (Public Domain)

Thankfully, Lennon’s legacy lives on in his words, his music and his efforts to speak truth to power. As Yoko Ono shared in a 2014 letter to the parole board tasked with determining whether Chapman should be released: “A man of humble origin, [John Lennon] brought light and hope to the whole world with his words and music. He tried to be a good power for the world, and he was. He gave encouragement, inspiration and dreams to people regardless of their race, creed and gender.”

Sadly, not much has changed for the better in the world since Lennon walked among us.

Peace remains out of reach. Activism and whistleblowers continue to be prosecuted for challenging the government’s authority. Militarism is on the rise, with local police dressed like the military, all the while the governmental war machine continues to wreak havoc on innocent lives across the globe.

For those of us who joined with John Lennon to imagine a world of peace, it’s getting harder to reconcile that dream with the reality of the American police state.

Meanwhile, as I point out in my book Battlefield America: The War on the American People, those who dare to speak up are labeled dissidents, troublemakers, terrorists, lunatics, or mentally ill and tagged for surveillance, censorship, involuntary detention or, worse, even shot and killed in their own homes by militarized police.

As Lennon shared in a 1968 interview:

“I think all our society is run by insane people for insane objectives… I think we’re being run by maniacs for maniacal means. If anybody can put on paper what our government and the American government and the Russian… Chinese… what they are actually trying to do, and what they think they’re doing, I’d be very pleased to know what they think they’re doing. I think they’re all insane. But I’m liable to be put away as insane for expressing that. That’s what’s insane about it.”

So what’s the answer?

Lennon had a multitude of suggestions.

“If everyone demanded peace instead of another television set, then there’d be peace.”

“War is over if you want it.”

“Produce your own dream…. It’s quite possible to do anything, but not to put it on the leaders…. You have to do it yourself. That’s what the great masters and mistresses have been saying ever since time began. They can point the way, leave signposts and little instructions in various books that are now called holy and worshipped for the cover of the book and not for what it says, but the instructions are all there for all to see, have always been and always will be. There’s nothing new under the sun. All the roads lead to Rome. And people cannot provide it for you. I can’t wake you up. You can wake you up. I can’t cure you. You can cure you.”

“Peace is not something you wish for; It’s something you make, Something you do, Something you are, And something you give away.”

“If you want peace, you won’t get it with violence.”

And my favorite advice of all:

“Say you want a revolution / We better get on right away / Well you get on your feet / And out on the street / Singing power to the people.”

U.S. on the edge of a civil war

Source

October 10, 2020 – 18:38

As Trump spent the year warning about voter fraud, the Oath Keepers and other Trump’s supporters were listening. 

“What would happen, I wondered, if Trump lost, said the election had been stolen, and refused to concede? Or the flip side: What if he won and his opponents poured into the streets in protest?” Defense One

writer Mike Giglio wrote on October 4. 

The U.S. was already seeing a surge in political violence. In August, the FBI put out a bulletin that warned of a possible escalation heading into the election. 

“How much worse would things get if trained professionals took up arms?” Giglio asked, according to Defense One.

The American Civil War began because slaveholding Southern nationalists refused to recognize the lawful election of Abraham Lincoln. The underlying cause may have been fear that a Republican president would ban the expansion of slavery into the West, but the triggering incident was losing a presidential election.

Aaron Sheehan-Dean, the Fred C. Frey professor of Southern studies at Louisiana State University, said, “We are confronted with a similar crisis today. According to the reporting of Barton Gellman in the Atlantic, a group of loyalists is laying the groundwork to disregard the results of the November presidential election if they send Democrat Joe Biden to the White House. These new fire-eaters, taking a cue from President Trump himself, advance what scientists call a ‘non-falsifiable hypothesis’. If Trump wins the election, the system works; if he loses, the system is corrupt. Any critique of this logic is only more proof that hidden forces are conspiring against him. The danger this posture poses to the United States is as great as the one manifested by Southern secession in 1861.”

Sheehan-Dean added, “While states are not threatening to leave the Union today, Lincoln faced a similar situation to the one confronting us.” 

America is already split, Trump Nation has seceded

Robert Reich wrote in the Guardian that “before Trump, most Americans weren’t especially passionate about politics. But Trump’s MO has been to force people to become passionate about him – to take fierce sides for or against. And he considers himself president only of the former, whom he calls ‘my people’.

Trump came to office with no agenda except to feed his monstrous ego. He has never fueled his base. His base has fueled him. Its adoration sustains him.
So does the antipathy of his detractors. Presidents usually try to appease their critics. Trump has gone out of his way to offend them. ‘I do bring rage out,’ he unapologetically told Bob Woodward in 2016.”

Robert Reich went on to say, “in this way, he has turned America into a gargantuan projection of his own pathological narcissism.

His entire re-election platform is found in his use of the pronouns ‘we’ and ‘them’. ‘We’ are people who love him, Trump Nation. ‘They’ hate him.”

In late August, near the end of a somnolent address on the South Lawn of the White House, accepting the Republican nomination, Trump extemporized: “The fact is, we’re here – and they’re not.” It drew a standing ovation.

At a recent White House news conference, a CNN correspondent asked if Trump condemned the behavior of his supporters in Portland, Oregon. In response, he charged: “Your supporters, and they are your supporters indeed, shot a young gentleman.”

In Trump’s eyes, CNN exists in a different country: Anti-Trump Nation.

Polls warning of civil war, violence

Meanwhile, a new poll shows a large swath of Americans harbor deep reservations about the election results weeks before Election Day and are concerned about what actions people might resort to as a consequence.

The YouGov poll of 1,999 registered voters found that nearly half – 47% – disagree with the idea that the election “is likely to be fair and honest.”

And that slightly more than half – 51% – won’t “generally agree on who is the legitimately elected president of the United States.” The online poll was conducted Oct.1-2 and has a margin of error of +/- 2.56 percentage points.

In addition, a YouGov poll of 1,505 voters found that 56% said they expect to see “an increase in violence as a result of the election.” That question had a margin of error of 4.2 percentage points.

For Fry and many other Trump supporters, the concern over the election’s legitimacy is tied to the largely unproven claims Trump has raised about potential fraud involving millions of mail-in ballots that already have begun to pour in to election office across the nation.

Leaked FBI report warns of violence in advance of election

A leaked September 29 FBI intelligence report prepared by the Dallas, Texas, field office warns that leading up to the November election, “Boogaloo adherents” and “militia violent extremists” are increasing “violent and criminal activity” in the Dallas area.

The assessment was made the same day Trump, in the first presidential debate with his Democratic opponent, Joe Biden, refused to condemn white supremacists and militia groups, instead instructing the fascistic street gang the Proud Boys to “stand back and stand by.”

The intelligence document, leaked to the Nation’s national security reporter Ken Klippenstein, confirms that the federal government continues to downplay the threat violent far-right groups pose to the general population. It also demonstrates that homicidal terrorist violence overwhelmingly emanates not from amorphous “Antifa” or “insurrectionary anarchist” groups, as the New York Times recently argued, but from far-right anti-communist and racist groups. These include the Proud Boys, “Boogaloo” and “back the blue” militia groups such as the Oath Keepers and the Three Percenters (III).
 
Stewart Rhodes, the founder of far-right Oath Keepers, believed it had an ally in the White House for the first time. In 2016, when Trump had warned of election fraud, Rhodes put out a call for members to quietly monitor polling stations. 

When Trump warned of an invasion by undocumented immigrants, Rhodes traveled to the southern border with an Oath Keepers patrol. He sent members to “protect” Trump supporters from the protesters at his rallies and appeared in the VIP section at one of them, standing in the front row in a black Oath Keepers shirt. When Trump warned of the potential for civil war at the start of the impeachment inquiry last fall, Rhodes voiced his assent on Twitter. “This is the truth,” he wrote. “This is where we are.”

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US Lawmakers to Introduce Legislation on Commission to Evaluate Trump’s Mental Capacity

October 9, 2020

U.S. President Donald Trump

US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi [D-CA] and Maryland Democratic congressman Jamie Raskin announced on Thursday they would be introducing legislation to establish a commission charged with evaluating US President Donald Trump’s mental and physical capacity to hold office.

Pelosi and Raskin said they would hold a press conference on Friday announcing introduction of the Commission on Presidential Capacity to Discharge the Powers and Duties of Office Act.

A press notice announcing the conference noted the commission and process are “called for in the 25th amendment to the US Constitution to enable Congress to help ensure effective and uninterrupted leadership in the highest office in the Executive Branch of government.”

The 25th amendment was ratified in 1967 in the wake of the 1963 assassination of US President John F. Kennedy to establish an orderly path of succession in the event the president perishes or becomes unable to perform the duties of office, such as when suffering from an illness.

Section 4 of the amendment describes the process in which other politicians may together determine the president is unfit to perform the duties of office and go about removing them from office, which is set in motion by the “Vice President and a majority of either the principal officers of the executive departments or of such other body as Congress may by law provide.”

The question of US President Donald Trump’s fitness to hold office has once again come under scrutiny in the aftermath of his contraction of the COVID-19 novel coronavirus last week, which caused him to spend several days at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center in Bethesda, Maryland, and to receive a slew of drugs and even supplemental oxygen for a brief period of time.

Trump did not pass executive authority to Vice President Mike Pence during that time, but the symptoms of the illness and potential side-effects of the drugs he was taking caused many to question his ability to do his job.

Earlier on Thursday, Pelosi noted that on Friday “We’re going to be talking about the 25th Amendment.” Trump replied to the news in furious Tweet.

“Crazy Nancy is the one who should be under observation,” Trump said. “They don’t call her Crazy for nothing!”

Last year, former Acting FBI Director Andrew McCabe revealed on CBS’ “60 Minutes” that in May 2017, after Trump fired then-FBI Director James Comey, he and then-Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein briefly explored using the 25th amendment to remove Trump from office. After Trump appointed Robert Mueller to head the FBI’s Russiagate investigation eight days later, their concern was somewhat assuaged.

SourceAgenceis

Possible Sign of Life Detected Under Beirut Rubble Weeks after Blast

Possible Sign of Life Detected Under Beirut Rubble Weeks after Blast

By Staff, Agencies

A pulsing signal has been detected from under the rubble of a building that collapsed in the Beirut port explosion last month, raising faint hopes that there may be a survivor there.

A sniffer dog belonging to a Chilean search and rescue team first detected something in rubble of a building that had previously been searched. The team then used audio equipment to listen for a possible heartbeat, and detected what could be a pulse of 18 to 19 beats per minute.

It is extremely unlikely that any survivors would be found a month after the blast, which killed 191 people, injured 6,000 others and damaged thousands of homes. The past few weeks have been extremely hot in Lebanon, with high levels of humidity.

“99% there isn’t anything, but even if there is less than 1% hope, we should keep on looking,” said Youssef Malah, a civil defense worker. He said his men would continue working throughout the night.

A Chilean volunteer, Francesco Lermonda, said their equipment identified breathing and heartbeats from humans, not animals, and it had detected a sign at the site. He said it was rare but not unheard of for someone to survive under rubble for a month.

As night fell, rescue workers set up lights to work through the darkness. Every now and then, the Chilean team asked bystanders to turn off their phones and stay quiet while they listened for signs of life.

French experts as well as the FBI have taken part in the investigation into the blast at the request of Lebanese authorities. Their findings have yet to be released. Authorities have detained 25 people in connection with the explosion, most of them port and customs officials.

On Thursday, the Lebanese military discovered another four tons of ammonium nitrate near the port, the Associated Press reports. According to the military, army experts were called in for an inspection and found 4.35 tons of the dangerous chemical in four containers stored near the port. There were no details on the origin of the chemicals or their owner.

The Question Concerning Covid-19 and Technology

 BY GILAD ATZMON

covid and Technology.jpg

By Gilad Atzmon

 At a time of health crisis one would expect to see an open global scholarly, multi disciplinary debate among scientists, scholars from different fields, politicians and finance experts. Not only does such a discourse not exist, what we have seen instead is a crude attempt to eradicate any such exchange. It isn’t our governments that interfere with this crucial discourse:  it isn’t Trump or the FBI that deleted seven million FB posts that didn’t agree with the World Health Organisation’s narrative. It wasn’t the Tories or Boris Johnson who erased thousands of salient videos from Youtube. It has been the work of the giant technology companies operating in concert to silence dissenting views.

 By now we are used to the idea that telling the truth about Israel and its lobby provokes severe authoritarian reactions, and it took us just a few days into the current Covid-19 pandemic to grasp that dissent from the official Corona virus narrative elicits similar drastic responses. One may want to question what Covid-19 and Israel have in common.

The outcome has been devastating. Six months into the ‘crisis,’ we still know very little about the virus we are told threatens us all.

 Not only may many people have died ‘with Covid-19,’ science itself has been murdered by a deadly virus.  What we have seen in the last six months is a complete eradication of the Western scientific and cultural ethos. 3000 years of Western tradition have been replaced by money driven culture that fakes images of scientific thought.

 Instead of asking what is it that endangers some segments of the population, our health institutions and corporations are concerned with one simple question:

         How do we translate Covid-19 into a cash machine?

 Instead of scientists debating the most crucial issues to do with a well-advertised global health hazard, start-ups are competing amongst themselves in a desperate vaccine contest, we see Wall Street rising by hundreds of billions exploiting the confusion. We witness Amazon extending its global monopoly while smaller retailers are falling like flies, and during this time, technology companies have shown us their true nature and purpose. The truth can’t be denied, Google is not a search engine, it is an Orwellian indoctrination apparatus, big brother 2020. FB, and Twitter are not social networks, they are actually anti-social filters. They gate-keep that which you are not allowed to say or think, but surely start to grasp.  

 Bizarrely enough, none of this is new. The warnings about this authoritarian shift were predicted by many including yours truly. Orwell saw it coming as early as 1948 or perhaps in 1936 while fighting in Catalonia.  But the context of this draconian twist was probably defined best decades ago by the great philosophers, Otto Weininger and Martin Heidegger.

In the early twentieth century, the Austrian philosopher Otto Weininger realised that medical science was about to lose its holistic understanding of the human body as an organism and had begun to see a collection of organs instead. Weininger saw that medical science was destined to morph into  “a matter of drugs, a mere administration of chemicals.” Weininger, Jewish by origin, was one of the most critical voices of Jewish culture and ideology. In his book, ‘Sex and Character,’ he unleashed an unprecedented attack on Jewish culture and its impact on medical science and scientific thought in general. I do not have any doubt that his words may offend some people however, it is clear that the non-organic, anti-holistic approach to medicine extends way beyond the limited realm of ‘Jewish doctors.’

 Weininger wrote the following in 1903:

 “The present turn of medical science is largely due to the influence of the Jews, who in such numbers have embraced the medical profession. From the earliest times, until the dominance of the Jews, medicine was closely allied with religion. But now they would make it a matter of drugs, a mere administration of chemicals. But it can never be that the organic will be explained by the inorganic. Fechner and Preyer were right when they said that death came from life, not life from death… We should return from this Judaistic science to the nobler conceptions of Copernicus and Galileo, Kepler and Euler, Newton and Linnceus, Lamarck and Faraday, Sprengel and Cuvier. The freethinkers of to-day, soulless and not believing in the soul, are incapable of filling the places of these great men and of reverently realising the presence of intrinsic secrets in nature.” (Sex and Character, Otto Weininger pg 315)

 Weininger didn’t pull his punches in his criticism of his fellow Jews. He wanted science to be emancipated from an emerging materialist paradigm that was hostile to his understanding of the meaning of being in the world. Otto Weininger, who was one of the most influential thinkers during the first half of the 20th century, is unknown to most contemporary thinkers. His genius, however controversial, has been largely eradicated by those who control our public discourse.

Heidegger’s lecture,  ‘The Question Concerning Technology’ (1954) was published five decades after Otto Weininger’s ‘Sex and Character’ saw daylight. In between the two literary events, the world experienced two world wars, a communist revolution, mass genocide campaigns that were technologically and industrially inspired and driven, the car was born as was aviation and the computer, the atomic bomb and a cold war. 

 Heidegger saw technology primarily as a mode of revelation. Through technology, things unveil themselves to us to the extent that we learn about the world around us, but also about our role, meaning, limitations and destiny in the world. Technology, as such, has made the world in which we live and provides a window into the meaning of Being.

 But modern technology, according to Heidegger, introduced a change in the duality between man and the universe. Rather than revealing and unveiling the world to us, technology has mutated into a mode of exploitation that sustains the world in being somehow inaccessible to us.

 Heidegger observed that because of technology, “all distances in time and space are shrinking…yet the hasty setting aside of all distances brings no nearness; for nearness does not consist in a small amount of distance.”

 Despite rapid advances in technology, we do not experience this ‘nearness,’ let alone understand it.  Instead of a gradual understanding as items manifest themselves to us as technological, we see them and treat them as what Heidegger calls a ‘standing reserve:’ supplies and exhibits in a showroom or a warehouse. The world is becoming a collection of technological items, gadgets, pieces of inventory to be ordered, conscripted, consumed, digested, uploaded, streamed, assembled and disassembled. Everything approaches us merely as a source of energy or as something we must organize or purchase. We treat even human capabilities and illnesses as though they were only the means for technological procedures and instruments for production.

 This is what Covid-19 is and this is exactly where we are with the ostensible health threat. Even before we could realise what covid-19 is, it was reduced into a technological asset, an Heideggerian ‘standing reserve’. Whether it is the mask debate, future vaccinations or ventilators, Covid 19 morphed into a ‘cash machine’ as much as a health risk.

 If Covid-19 and the technology involved is a mode of revelation, it reveals little about the health crisis, but tells a lot about us and what we are not willing to admit about ourselves. We are now, in fact, removed from the Western Athenian ethos that subscribes to pluralism, openness and, most important, a relentless and OPEN search for truth in wisdom. We seem pretty happily occupied by the so-called Jerusalem way of thinking. We are delighted to be fearful and accept being terrorised by repeated apocalyptic scenarios. We seem to follow anyone who strips us of our elementary rights.  We accept suppression of free thinking, until further notice, we prefer to follow laws, regulations and ‘mitzvoth.’* In such a world, Heidegger and Weininger are public enemies. Orwell and his prophecy are not going to be part of our Western education curriculum for much longer.

 Covid19 has revealed to us that we are not as free as we may have believed, and the only question left open is whether we, the people, can rise again, and when? 

—-

 *By ‘mitzvoth’ (plural) I refer to orders, rules, commandments that do not necessarily follow any scientific or rational reasoning. In Judaism mitzvah (singular) refers to a commandment ordered by God to be performed as a religious duty. As such, the purpose of any given Mitzvah cannot be challenged as it is grounded on a decree made by a higher order.

ما هي أسباب الدّخول الأميركيّ على خطّ التحقيقات في انفجار بيروت؟

شارل أبي نادر

شارل أبي نادر 

المصدر: الميادين نت

14 اب

ما هي أسباب الدّخول الأميركيّ على خطّ التحقيقات في انفجار بيروت؟

كان لافتاً ما ظهر من معطيات تستدعي التوقف عندها، لناحية ما قاله قبطان السفينة “روسوس” التي نقلت الأمونيوم إلى لبنان وما كشفته صحيفة “نيويورك تايمز” الأميركيّة.

فور وصوله إلى بيروت، وعلى الرغم من أنَّ أهداف زيارته كانت محدّدة في الأساس بمتابعة النقاش بملفّ ترسيم الحدود اللبنانية البحرية مع فلسطين المحتلَّة، إضافةً إلى موضوع تشكيل الحكومة اللبنانيّة بعد استقالة حكومة الرئيس حسان دياب، فقد أعلن ديفيد هيل، موفد الإدارة الأميركية، أنَّ هناك فريقاً من مكتب التحقيق الفيدرالي الأميركي سيشارك في التحقيقات التي تجريها السلطات اللبنانية في انفجار مرفأ بيروت، وذلك، بحسب ادّعائه، تلبية لدعوة من الدولة اللبنانية.

يتلاقى الدخول الأميركي حالياً على خطّ التحقيق في انفجار بيروت، مع دعوات داخلية لبنانية مشبوهة، كانت قد طالبت بتحقيق دولي، على خلفية عدم ثقتها بالقضاء اللبناني، وذلك مباشرة بعد الانفجار، وقبل أن يتبيَّن أي من الخيوط أو المعطيات أو الظروف المتعلّقة بالانفجار.

وكان لافتاً ما ظهر من معطيات تستدعي التوقف عندها، لناحية ما قاله قبطان السفينة “روسوس” التي نقلت الأمونيوم إلى لبنان، بوريس بروكوشوف، لـ”الميادين”، وما كشفته صحيفة “نيويورك تايمز” الأميركيّة عن برقيّة دبلوماسيّة أميركيّة صدرت يوم الجمعة الماضي، بعد 3 أيام من انفجار مرفأ بيروت في 4 آب/أغسطس الجاري، توضح أنّ متعاقداً أميركيّاً يعمل مع الجيش الأميركي، حذّر قبل 4 أعوام تقريباً من أنَّ المرفأ يحتوي على مخبأ كبير للمواد القابلة للانفجار والمخزّنة بطريقة غير آمنة.

أمام كلّ هذه المعطيات التي تطرح العديد من التساؤلات، هل يمكن إيجاد أيّ دور للأميركيين في هذه القضيّة؟ وهل يمكن الوقوف على أسباب هذا الغموض وعدم الوضوح في مسار الباخرة التي حملت النيترات إلى بيروت؟ وكيف يرتبط هذا الغموض مع التخبّط الإداري والأمني والسياسي اللبناني في معالجة كمية النيترات، لناحية إفراغها ومصادرتها وتخزينها، وصولاً إلى الانفجار القاتل؟ 

في الواقع، ومن خلال إجراء مقاربة سريعة لشروط وإجراءات الشّحن واستقبال البضائع في لبنان أو أي دولة أخرى، تبقى هناك تعليمات أساسية في موضوع استيراد البضائع لا يتم تجاوزها، مهما كانت الظروف، وتتعلَّق بعدم إدخال أي بضاعة إلى لبنان أو أيّ دولة بشكل عام، إذا لم يكن هناك مالك أو طالب لهذه البضاعة متواجد في الأراضي اللبنانية، سواء كان فرداً أو شركة أو مؤسسة خاصة أو عامة، ومن المفترض أن يملك ترخيصاً باستيراد تلك المواد والتعامل معها، إضافةً طبعاً إلى وجوب أن تكون هذه البضاعة مستوفية للشروط العامة والخاصة للاستيراد، والتي تتعلَّق بالسلامة العامة، وبأن لا تكون من الممنوعات أو المحظورات وما شابه.

هذه الشروط المذكورة أعلاه لم تتوفر بتاتاً في كمية نيترات الأمونيوم التي تم إفراغها في لبنان في بداية العام 2014، ووضعها في عنبر رقم 12 في مرفأ بيروت، الخاصّ بالمصادرات بشكل عام، لناحية عدم وجود مالك أو طالب لها في لبنان، أو لناحية كونها مادة قابلة للانفجار، تتركَّز فيها نسبة الأمونيات الخطرة بحوالى 36 في المئة، الأمر الذي يجعلها مادة متفجرة بامتياز وغير صالحة للاستعمال كأسمدة زراعيّة، إذ لا يجب أن تتجاوز النسبة المركزة في الأخيرة أكثر من 15 في المئة، وبالتالي كان يجب أن تخضع قبل استيرادها إلى لبنان لآلية أمنية وإدارية معقَّدة تتطلب على الأقل موافقة اختصاصيين وخبراء متفجّرات وأسلحة وذخائر من الجيش اللبناني، استناداً إلى قانون الأسلحة والذخائر اللبناني.

انطلاقاً من ذلك، تُطرح أول علامة استفهام حول الجهة التي تم إفراغ الحمولة القاتلة لمصلحتها، والتي بقيت مجهولة طيلة فترة وجود النيترات في العنبر رقم 12، والتي، ببقائها مجهولة، خلقت إشكالية قضائية وإدارية وأمنية لدى مديرية الجمارك اللبنانية من جهة، ولدى الأجهزة الأمنية والعسكرية الموجودة على المرفأ من جهة أخرى.

من جهة أخرى، واستناداً إلى ما قاله قبطان السفينة الناقلة للنيترات لـ”الميادين”، تبقى علامات الاستفهام والشبهات كثيرة لناحية النقاط التالية: 

– لماذا لم تستجوب السلطات اللبنانية طاقم السفينة المكلّف بنقل وحماية مواد شديدة الخطورة، غير معروف مصدرها ووجهتها بالتحديد، قبل اتخاذ قرار بإفراغ حمولتها الخطيرة والحساسة؟

– لماذا لم يتقدَّم مالك السفينة أو أحد وكلائه لدفع رسم الرسو (المؤقت) في مرفأ بيروت، والذي يشكّل نسبة ضئيلة جداً مقارنة ببدل ثمن النيترات التي تمت مصادرتها، وبالتالي التسبّب بخسارتها من دون مقابل؟ ومن هي الجهة التي غطّت هذه المبالغ (ثمن النيترات وإيجار سفينة النقل وبدل إبحار الطاقم من جورجيا إلى بيروت على الأقل)، لكي يصل بها الأمر إلى المصادرة، وبالتالي خسارتها؟ 

في الواقع، إضافةً إلى هذه التساؤلات، يجب التوقف أيضاً عند ما نشرته صحيفة “نيويورك تايمز” عن معرفة السلطات الأميركية (الأمنية على الأقل) بحيثيات النيترات، لناحية درجة تركيزها المرتفعة (36 في المئة)، والتي تجعلها بمصاف المتفجرات “الحساسة والخطرة والفعالة” جداً بالمعنى الكامل، أو لناحية وجودها في مرفأ بيروت، في مكان حساس ومؤثر بشكل كبير، في منطقة واسعة فيها تواجد ومرور لعدد كبير من أعضاء البعثات، ومن العسكريين والدبلوماسيين الأميركيين والأوروبيين، إضافة طبعاً إلى العدد الكبير من اللبنانيين والمقيمين في المنطقة المجاورة لمرفأ بيروت.

من جهة أخرى، ترافقت العملية (إفراغ الباخرة وحجز النيترات) حينها في العامين 2013 و2014، مع حركة نشطة جداً لنقل وإدخال أسلحة وذخائر ومتفجرات إلى سوريا، لمصلحة مسلحي المعارضة السورية والمسلحين الإرهابيين الذين كانوا، وما زالوا، يقاتلون الدولة السورية وحلفاءها، ومن ضمنها أكثر من باخرة تم اكتشاف إحداها وضبطها ومصادرتها في شمال لبنان (لطف الله 2).

من هنا، ومع إصرار السّلطات اللبنانية على عدم اعتماد تحقيق دولي كامل في الانفجار (ربما تستعين بخبرات دولية فنية فقط)، ومع وجود بعض المؤشرات إلى أنَّ التحقيقات بدأت تقترب من التوصل إلى إمكانية اكتشاف ارتباطات قضية الشحن والنقل والإفراغ المشبوه للنيترات، بقضية مركَّبة تهدف إلى تأمين متفجرات للمعارضة والإرهابيين في سوريا. انطلاقاً من كلّ ذلك، يمكن استنتاج أسباب دخول الأميركيين على خطّ التحقيق، عبر عرضهم على السلطات اللبنانية تقديم ما يملكون من خبرات متطورة، فنياً وتقنياً، تساعد في كشف ملابسات كيفية حدوث الانفجار وسببه، لعلّهم في ذلك، وعبر نفوذهم الواسع، يوجّهون التحقيقات أو على الأقل يضبطونها بشكل لا تتمدَّد إلى مكان يكشف تورّط بعض الأطراف أو المسؤولين السابقين اللبنانيين في تغذية نار الحرب على سوريا.

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Rhodes Scholar Talbott’s Hand Revealed in Russia Gate: The Only Foreign Interference America Should Worry About is British.

Rhodes Scholar Talbott’s Hand Revealed in Russia Gate: The Only Foreign Interference America Should Worry About is British.

August 13, 2020

By Matthew Ehret for the Saker Blog

It has recently come to light that the primary source of the Steele Dossier and Mueller Investigation is none other than Igor Danchenko- a veteran Brookings Institute employee from Ukraine who not only hadn’t been to Russia for decades but who admitted to the FBI in January 2017 that the entire Steele dossier was a fraud.

For those who do not know, the Brookings Institute is a powerful DNC think tank founded by Bill Clinton’s former Deputy Secretary of State Strobe Talbott who stepped down as president in 2017. Brookings has become known for its revolving door between officials in the Obama White House/DNC and the private sector. In recent weeks, it has come to light that Talbott reached out to Steele in August 2016 to share his own data accumulated by Danchenko and conspired with Steele on advancing the dossier in the wake of Trump’s November 2016 election. Other Brookings Institute agents deployed by Talbott include former NSC Russia Expert Trump impeachment witness Fiona Hill who co-authored a paper with Danchenko and also Talbott’s brother-in-law Cody Shearer who circulated a parallel dossier containing many of the falsified evidence printed in Steele’s script.

Sadly many analysts have read these new revelations badly and have concluded that MI6’s Christopher Steele was actually duped by fake American intelligence coming from opportunistic American operatives seeking to undermine a republican president for purely political considerations. Nothing however can be further from the truth.

Straussian vs Rhodesian Flavors of the Same Poison

Talbott himself may be American by blood, but thoroughly British in spirit. Both he and Clinton were Rhodes Scholars at Oxford in the 1970s and were joined by dozens of other Rhodes Scholars who flooded into the White House in 1992.

While appearing on the surface to oppose the brute force approach of the neoconservative Straussians, the Rhodes Scholar nests have distinguished themselves over the past century by promoting a world order that saw a more technocratic/Malthusian system of controls with the USA playing a subservient position in the Great Game. The Straussian neocons on the other hand aimed at a post-nation state world order with America acting as the lead and monetarism serving as a ruling religion. The differences between these two outlooks differs only superficially, as both plans involve a global bankers dictatorship controlled by the City of London and both demanded divided world of war, poverty and resource monopolies by an elite that have no allegiance to the USA or any sovereign nation state per se.

This outlook was expressed by Talbott in a most visceral manner in 1992 when he said:

“All countries are basically social arrangements….No matter how permanent or even sacred they may seem at any one time, in fact they are all artificial and temporary….Perhaps national sovereignty wasn’t such a great idea after all….But it has taken the events in our own wondrous and terrible century to clinch the case for world government.”

The exposure of the British hand behind the scenes affords us a unique glimpse into the real historical forces undermining America’s true constitutional tradition throughout the 20th century, as Mueller/the Five Eyes/Rhodes Scholars are not new phenomena but actually follow a modus operandi set down for already more than a century. One of the biggest obstacles to seeing this modus operandi run by the British Empire is located in the belief in a mythology which has become embedded in the global psyche for over half a century and which we should do our best to free ourselves of.

Debunking the Myth of the “American Empire”

While there has been a long-standing narrative promoted for over 70 years that the British Empire disappeared after World War II having been replaced by the “American Empire”, it is the furthest thing from the truth. America, as constitutionally represented by its greatest presidents (who can unfortunately be identified by their early deaths while serving in office), were never colonialist and were always in favor of reining in British Institutions at home while fighting British colonial thinking abroad.

Franklin Roosevelt’s thirteen year-long battle with the Deep State, which he referred to as the “economic royalists who should have left America in 1776″, was defined in clear terms by his patriotic Vice-President Henry Wallace who warned of the emergence of a new Anglo-American fascism in 1944 when he said:

“Fascism in the postwar inevitably will push steadily for Anglo-Saxon imperialism and eventually for war with Russia. Already American fascists are talking and writing about this conflict and using it as an excuse for their internal hatreds and intolerances toward certain races, creeds and classes.”

The fact is that already in 1944, a policy of Anglo-Saxon imperialism had been promoted subversively by British-run think tanks known as the Round Table Movement and Fabian Society, and the seeds had already been laid for the anti-Russian cold war by those British-run American fascists. It is not a coincidence that this fascist Cold War policy was announced in a March 5, 1946 speech in Fulton, Missouri by none other than Round Table-follower Winston Churchill.

The Empire Strikes

When the Round Table Movement was created with funds from the Rhodes Trust in 1902, a new plan was laid out to create a new technocratic elite to manage the re-emergence of the new British Empire and crush the emergence of American-inspired nationalism globally. This organization would be staffed by generations of Rhodes Scholars who would receive their indoctrination in Oxford before being sent back to advance a “post-nation state” agenda in their respective countries.

As this agenda largely followed the mandate set out by Cecil Rhodes in his Seventh Will who said “Why should we not form a secret society with but one object: the furtherance of the British Empire and the bringing of the whole uncivilized world under British rule, for the recovery of the United States, and for the making of the Anglo-Saxon race but one Empire?”

With the help of an anglophile, racist president in America, leading figures organizing these think tanks first advanced a program to create a “League of Nations” as the solution to the “nationalist problem” which humanity was told “caused” World War One. Nationalist forces in America rejected the idea that the constitution should be rendered obsolete and the plan for global governance failed. However that did not stop the Round Table Movement from trying again. Leading Round Table controller Lord Lothian (British Ambassador to the USA) complained of the “American problem” in 1918.

There is a fundamentally different concept in regard to this question between Great Britain and the United States  as to the necessity of civilized control over politically backward peoples…. The inhabitants of Africa and parts of Asia have proved unable to govern themselves…. Yet America not only has no conception of this aspect of the problem but has been led to believe that the assumption of this kind of responsibility is iniquitous imperialism.

They take an attitude towards the problem of world government exactly analogous to the one they [earlier] took toward the problem of the world war. If they are slow in learning we shall be condemned to a period of strained relations between the various parts of the English-speaking world. [We must] get into the heads of Canadians and Americans that a share in the burden of world government is just as great and glorious a responsibility as participation in the war”.

A Chinese leader of the American-inspired republican revolution of 1911 named Sun Yat-sen warned of the likes of Lord Lothian and the League of Nations in 1924 when he said:

“The nations which are employing imperialism to conquer others and which are trying to maintain their own favored positions as sovereign lords of the whole world are advocating cosmopolitanism [aka: global governance/globalization -ed] and want the world to join them… Nationalism is that precious possession by which humanity maintains its existence. If nationalism decays, then when cosmopolitanism flourishes we will be unable to survive and will be eliminated”.

New Name. Same Beast

By 1919, the Round Table Movement changed its name to the Royal Institute for International Affairs (aka: Chatham House) with the “Round Table” name relegated to its geopolitical periodical. In Canada and Australia, branches were created in 1928 under the rubrics of “Canadian and Australian Institutes for International Affairs” (CIIA, AIIA). However in America, where knowledge of the British Empire’s subversive role was more widely known, the name “American Institute for International Affairs” was still too delicate. Instead the name “Council on Foreign Relations” was chosen and was chartered in 1921.

Rhodes Scholar William Yandall Elliot surrounded by a few of his leading disciples: Sir Kissinger, Zbigniew Brzezinski Samuel Huntington and Pierre Trudeau

Staffed with Rhodes Scholars and Fabians, the CFR (and its International Chatham House counterparts) dubbed themselves “independent think tanks” which interfaced with Rhodes Scholars and Fabians in academia, government and the private sector alike with the mission of advancing a foreign policy agenda that was in alignment with the British Empire’s dream of an Anglo-American “special relationship”. One such Rhodes Scholar was William Yandall Elliot, who played a major role mentoring Henry Kissinger and a generation of geo-politicians from Harvard, not the least of whom include Zbigniew Brzezinski, Pierre Elliot Trudeau and Samuel (Clash of Civilizations) Huntington.

The Round Table in Canada and the Coup Against FDR

In Canada, five leading Rhodes Scholars were busy creating the League of Social Reconstruction as a self-described “Fabian Society of Canada” in 1931 which was meant to be a fascist/technocratic answer to the chaos of “greedy nationalism” that supposedly caused the economic collapse of Black Friday in 1929. During the same time in America, a different path to fascism was taken by these networks during the early 1930s. This plan involved installing a General named Smedley Butler into power as a puppet dictator steered by the Anglo-American establishment. Luckily for America and the world, General Butler blew the whistle on the coup against Franklin Roosevelt at the last minute.

In a 1934 video address to the nation, General Butler said:

“I appeared before the Congressional Committee, the highest representation of the American people under subpoena to tell what I knew about activities which I believe might lead to an attempt to set up a fascist dictatorship… the upshot of the whole thing was that I was to pose to lead an organization of 500 000 men which would be able to take over the functions of government”

Left-Wing Fascism blossoms in Canada

Kissinger’s British Takeover of America

Though it took a few assassinations throughout the post war years, Kissinger’s takeover of the State Department ushered in a new era of British occupation of American foreign policy, whereby the republic increasingly became the “Dumb Giant” acting as “American Brawn for the British brains” using Churchill’s words. While a nihilistic generation of youth were tuning in on LSD, and an old guard of patriots surrounding Wallace and Kennedy had fallen to the “red scare” witch hunt, geopolitical theory was fed like a sweet poison down the throat of a sleeping nation, replacing a policy of peace and “win-win cooperation” advanced by true nationalist patriots as FDR, Wallace and the Kennedys, with an imperial clone masquerading as a republic.

Kissinger did nothing less than reveal his total allegiance to the British Empire on May 10, 1981 during a Chatham House conference in Britain when he described his relationship with the British Foreign office in the following terms:

“The British were so matter-of-factly helpful that they became a participant in internal American deliberations, to a degree probably never practiced between sovereign nations… In my White House incarnation then, I kept the British Foreign Office better informed and more closely engaged than I did the American State Department… It was symptomatic”.

During this period, Kissinger worked closely with CIA director George Bush Senior, who was later rewarded for his role in advancing the British-planned first war on Kuwait with a knighthood. This war set the stage for the second wave of Middle East wars beginning with the Anglo-Saudi orchestrated operation known as 9/11 and the ushering in of the new “post-nation state order” by Kissinger and Blair.

At the 1991 Bilderberg Conference in France, Kissinger (who would soon be knighted for his work on behalf of the British Empire) stated:

“Today, America would be outraged if U.N. troops entered Los Angeles to restore order. Tomorrow they will be grateful! This is especially true if they were told that there were an outside threat from beyond, whether real or promulgated, that threatened our very existence. It is then that all peoples of the world will plead to deliver them from this evil. The one thing every man fears is the unknown. When presented with this scenario, individual rights will be willingly relinquished for the guarantee of their well-being granted to them by the World Government.”

The Dystopic New World Order Threatened by a New Deal of the 21stCentury

It is this dystopic geopolitical order which has been challenged by the Russia-China alliance which arose in earnest with Xi Jinping’s 2013 announcement of the Belt and Road Initiative as the Grand design for large scale infrastructure projects internationally and in September 2015 with Vladimir Putin’s intervention into Syria which defeated the Hobbesian regime change paradigm which poisoned the west. In 2016, the election of nationalist American President Donald Trump opened the door for the first time in over 50 years to a true national coalition of sovereign nations to eliminate the cancer of colonial thinking forever from the earth.

It is this same British-run deep state which owns Robert Mueller, Strobe Talbott, who along with the Integrity Initiative, Five Eyes and other Deep State operatives are dedicated to overthrowing President Trump from office and undoing the great potential for a Multipolar Alliance of Sovereign Nation States. This sabotage has taken the form of a Great Global Reset and Green New Deal.

Matthew Ehret is the Editor-in-Chief of the Canadian Patriot Review , a BRI Expert on Tactical talk, and has authored 3 volumes of ‘Untold History of Canada’ book series. In 2019 he co-founded the Montreal-based Rising Tide Foundation 

Mohammed bin Salman Faces His Biggest Threat to the Throne. US Law Suit against Saudi Crown Prince

Law Suit in US Federal Court

By Steven Sahiounie

Global Research, August 12, 2020

Mohammed bin Salman, the Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia, has been able to dodge legal responsibility in the death of Jamal Khashoggi, while US President Trump has defended and supported him.  It appears Mohammed bin Salman is facing a serious legal threat, and it will take personal interference by Trump and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo to save him from facing a judge in the federal court at Washington, DC.  Mohammed bin Salman may be praying for Trump to win in November 2020 to be sure he holds a ‘get out of jail’ card. 

Mohammed bin Salman faces US court summons

Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman has been issued a summons by the US District Court in Washington, DC. on August 7, 2020, after Saad al Jabri filed a lawsuit accusing Prince Mohammed bin Salman of sending a Saudi death squad to Canada to kill him.

Saad al Jabri was a former senior Saudi intelligence official working under the former Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Nayef, who was then Minister of the Interior.  Al Jabri was well known as the key link between Saudi intelligence services and their counterparts in the US and Europe.

Jabri’s lawyers filed a recent lawsuit in a federal court in Washington, DC. against Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, alleging he had sent a Saudi death squad to kill him in Canada on October 15, 2018, less than two weeks after the murder of Jamal Khashoggi at the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul.

Jamal Khashoggi

Al Jabri owes his life to the Canadian border officials who were suspicious of the Saudi death squad after they were caught lying at the Ontario International Airport while carrying forensic equipment and traveling on tourist visas, which resulted in denied entry to all but one member who carried diplomatic credentials.

The lawsuit reads:

“Dr. Saad was privy to sensitive information about Defendant bin Salman’s covert political scheming within the Royal Court, corrupt business dealings, and creation of a team of personal mercenaries that Defendant bin Salman would later use to carry out the extrajudicial killing of Jamal Khashoggi, among others.”

The FBI became aware of the threats to al Jabri and his family in January 2018, when his son, Khalid al Jabri, was prevented from boarding a flight departing from Boston’s Logan International Airport by FBI agents, who informed the young man his life and that of his family were under threat.

Al Jabri’s legal team maintains that the threat to his life remains, and the Saudi death squad was planning to enter Canada by land, thus avoiding any airport security.

Mohammed bin Salman’s death squad on trial in IstanbulIs CIA Leak of Bin Salman’s Guilt in Khashoggi Murder Aimed at Kushner, or Trump Himself?

Last month the trial in Istanbul began against 20 Saudi Arabians accused of killing Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi in the Saudi Consulate at Istanbul on October 2, 2018, even though none of the accused were present. His body was dismembered while his fiancée, Hatice Cengiz, had waited outside the consulate, and his remains have never been found.

Saudi Arabia’s former deputy intelligence chief Ahmed al-Assiri is accused of planning the murder and assembling a team to carry out the murder of Khashoggi at the behest of their boss, Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.  Saud al-Qahtani, a close adviser to Mohammed bin Salman, is similarly charged with having “instigated premeditated murder with monstrous intent.”  Qahtani continues to work closely with the crown prince, and according to a Saudi Arabian activist, who had been in prison, Qahtani told her, “I’ll do whatever I like to you, and then I’ll dissolve you and flush you down the toilet.”

Agnès Callamard said the Turkish trial is an “important judicial process. Here we have a space where the victims are heard in a way they have never been heard before. We have a space where witnesses are asked to speak under oath.”

UN report names Mohammed bin Salman in Khashoggi’s death

In June 2019, Agnes Callamard, the United Nations Special Rapporteur on Extrajudicial Killings, Summary, or Arbitrary Executions, published the results of her investigation into the killing of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi inside the Saudi consulate in Istanbul, Turkey.

The report concluded that Khashoggi’s death “constituted an extrajudicial killing for which the State of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia is responsible”. The report also said there is “credible evidence” warranting further investigation of Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.

The full UN report can be read here.

 “The operation involved multiple flights, including two private jets, one under diplomatic clearance. It entailed training, with two Saudi attaches from Istanbul flying to Riyadh for ‘top secret’, ‘urgent’ training and preparation, and it required planning and execution in Istanbul,” wrote Agnes Callamard in the report for the UN.

Callamard concluded that the decision to murder Khashoggi was taken before two of the most important members of the Saudi death squad Maher Mutreb, and Salah Tubaigy, the forensic pathologist who cut the body up, flew from Riyadh to Istanbul.

CIA concluded Mohammed bin Salman ordered Khashoggi murder

In November 2018, the Central Intelligence Agency concluded that the Saudi crown prince, Mohammed bin Salman, ordered the killing of the journalist Jamal Khashoggi,

Jared Kushner, Trump’s son-in-law, and senior adviser have remained close to Prince Mohammed bin Salman. Trump and Kushner have defended and supported the strong relationship with Mohammed bin Salman, despite the various important reports placing the responsibility of the murder of Khashoggi on him.

US arms sales to Saudi Arabia

Democrat and Republican lawmakers in the US Congress had held up a Trump administration request to sell 22 batches of munitions worth $8.1 billion to Saudi Arabia, because the US-made weapons were being used to kill thousands of civilians in Yemen, including the targeting of school buses full of children.

Marik String was acting chief of the US State Department’s political-military affairs bureau in early 2019, and he helped Secretary of State Mike Pompeo bypass a congressional freeze on arms sales to Saudi Arabia and the UAE by using a declared state of emergency in May 2019 to dodge the congressional hold.

The State Department’s inspector general, Steve A. Linick, had opened two investigations; one into the arms sale beginning in June 2019 and one into possible misuse of agency employees for the benefit of Mr. Pompeo and his wife. Pompeo asked Trump to fire Linick in May 2020, who was investigating whether the declared state of emergency was legal. Pompeo promoted String to acting legal advisor the very same day as he had declared the state of emergency.

Congressional officials have been told that the Trump administration plans to sell yet another package of weapons to Saudi Arabia worth $478 million.  With Linick gone, there will be no investigations.

*

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This article was originally published on Mideast Discourse.

Steven Sahiounie is an award-winning journalist. He is a frequent contributor to Global Research.The original source of this article is Global ResearchCopyright © Steven Sahiounie, Global Research, 2020

Iran Intelligence Ministry rejects reports on US-based group ringleader’s overseas arrest

Press TV

Monday, 03 August 2020 5:51 AM  [ Last Update: Monday, 03 August 2020 6:44 AM ]

US Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) (L) talks with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) during a rally with fellow Democrats before voting on H.R. 1, or the People Act, on the East Steps of the US Capitol on March 08, 2019 in Washington, DC. (AFP photo)
This photo released by Fars news agency shows Jamshid Sharmahd after his capture by Iranian security forces.

Iran’s Intelligence Ministry, which recently announced the apprehension of the ringleader of a US-based anti-Iran terrorist group, has rejected reports alleging that the person in question was actually nabbed in Tajikistan.

The reports “are roundly rejected,” the Ministry said in a statement that was cited by Tasnim News Agency on Sunday.

Statements released by the Ministry’s Public Relations Office are the ultimate source of any official information detailing the operations that are carried out by the Ministry’s operatives, the statement asserted.

The Ministry announced arresting Jamshid Sharmahd, the ringleader of the Tondar (Thunder) outfit, otherwise known as the so-called “Kingdom Assembly of Iran,” on Saturday, notifying that he had directed “armed operations and acts of sabotage” inside Iran from the US in the past.

Upon arrest, Sharmahd admitted to providing explosives for a 2008 attack in southern Iran that killed 14 people. US-based group ringleader admits providing explosives for 2008 deadly bomb attack in Iran

Upon arrest, the ringleader of a US-based anti-Iran terrorist group admits providing explosives for a 2008 attack in southern Iran.

“I was called before the bomb was about to be set off,” he was seen confessing in footage provided by the Islamic Republic of Iran News Network later in the day. 

The attack that targeted the Seyyed al-Shohada mosque in the city of Shiraz also wounded 215 others.

According to the Ministry, the group had planned to carry out several high-profile and potentially hugely-deadly attacks across the Islamic Republic, but had been frustrated in the attempts owing to intricate intelligence operations targeting the outfit. These included blowing up of Sivand Damn in Shiraz, detonating cyanide-laden bombs at Tehran International Book Fair, and carrying out explosions during mass gatherings at the Mausoleum of the late founder of the Islamic Republic, Imam Khomeini.

Details of the arrest

Intelligence Minister Mahmoud Alavi, meanwhile, congratulated the Ministry’s operatives on their success in arresting the terrorist ringleader, detailing the circumstances that surrounded the operation.

Sharmahd enjoyed “serious support” from the American and Israeli intelligence services, which “considered it to be far-fetched for the Iranian Intelligence Ministry to be able to penetrate their intelligence cover and put him under its command through an intricate operation,” the minister said.

The Americans still believe that pictures showing Sharmahd in Iran after his arrest have been snapped outside the Islamic Republic, he added, saying, “They will found out about everything [concerning the operation] in near future.”

Alavi differentiated between Sharmahd’s outfit and other so-called royalist groups, which mostly resort to rhetoric and statements to try to establish themselves.

Tondar “was the only movement that was very violent and was after establishing itself through terrorist operation,” the minister noted.

‘Iran neutralized 27 ops by Tondar’

Alavi noted that the Ministry had succeeded in frustrating 27 operations by Sharmahd and his group.

The minister again highly rated the arrest operation, recalling previous remarks by Sharmahd, in which he had considered himself to be comfortably nested within the US Federal Bureau of Investigation.

“He considered his place to be lying on the sixth floor of the FBI [‘s building],” and now sees himself in the grips of Iranian intelligence operatives, Alavi said.

Following the terrorist attack in Iran, the Islamic Republic notified the Interpol of Sharmahd’s identity and demanded his arrest. However, he would still travel freely between countries with his real identity.

Alavi said the inaction despite Tehran’s complaint “indicates the hollowness of the Americans and their European allies’ claim of fighting terrorism.”

The minister finally hailed that the arrest “has not been and will not be” the first such complicated operation to be aced by Iranian intelligence operatives, asserting that “they have carried out such arrests in the past, the due time for explaining which has not yet arrived.”


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Obituary: Ramadan Abdullah Shalah

Source

June 7, 2020

Former Islamic Jihad leader Ramadan Shalah. (Photo: File)
An extraordinary life of resistance against colonizers of his homeland Palestine will be celebrated, though Shalah is no more.
Al Manar TV reported on Saturday that the former leader of Palestine’s Islamic Jihad (PIJ) movement Ramadan Shalah has died.
His leadership of Palestine’s freedom struggle will be remembered as an outstanding contribution despite enormous challenges.
Born in Gaza in 1958, Shalah’s distinguished career as an academic did not impede his commitment to liberate Palestine. His impressive resume lists a 1990 doctoral degree in Islamic and Middle Eastern studies from the University of Durham in England, authorship of scholarly articles on Middle Eastern economics, and fluency in English, Arabic, and Hebrew.
He was tasked with leading the PIJ following the assassination of its founder Dr. Fathi Shiqaqi in 1995.
Until his fateful illness in 2018, Shalah’s remarkable ability to position the PIJ as a formidable arm of Palestine’s liberation movements alongside Hamas will remain a beacon of hope for his people.
As has been the case of most liberation movements including South Africa’s ANC, Islamic Jihad was designated as a “terrorist organization” by the United States.
In the Alarmuk refugee camp in Damascus, funeral arrangements for former Islamic Jihad leader Ramadan Shalah have begun. Leading Islamic Jihad leader Ziad Nahala has come to say goodbye.
See ⎛⎝DH⎠⎞’s other Tweets
And to the eternal shame of America for having branded Nelson Mandela as a “terrorist”, Ramadan Shalah shared the same fate. He was listed as a “Specially Designated Terrorist” in 1995 and a decade later was placed on the FBI’s “Most Wanted Terrorists” list with a huge bounty on his head.
Though Israel will rejoice his death, Palestine will mark his passing in tribute to yet one more martyr who selflessly dedicated his life to attaining freedom, honor, and dignity.
Ramadan Shalah may be no more, but the movement for liberation which he led from exile in Damascus and Beirut, and the significant alliances he formed within the arc of resistance is assured to be as steadfast as he was.

– Iqbal Jassat is an Executive Member of the South Africa-based Media Review Network. He contributed this article to The Palestine Chronicle. Visit: www.mediareviewnet.com 

Israel Perfecting Surveillance Tech

By Philip Giraldi

Source

Israel’s external spy organization Mossad and its internal espionage equivalent Shin Bet have reputations that are much larger than their actual successes, but the one area where they have excelled is electronic intelligence gathering. Recent electronic spying around the White House and other federal buildings in Washington carried out by the Israeli Embassy demonstrates that Israel does not differentiate much between friends and enemies when it conducts espionage. In fact, spying targeting the U.S. is probably its number one priority due to the fact that the Jewish state is so heavily dependent on American support that it feels compelled to learn what discussions relating to it are taking place behind closed doors.

Israeli penetration of U.S. telecommunications began in the 1990s, when American companies like AT&T and Verizon, the chief conduits of the National Security Agency (NSA) for communications surveillance, began to use Israeli-produced hardware, particularly for law enforcement-related surveillance and clandestine recording. The devices had a so-called back door, which meant that everything they did was shared with Israel. Israeli cyber-specialists even broke into classified networks with the NSA and FBI aware of what was going on but unwilling to confront “America’s best ally.” President Bill Clinton once quipped to Monica Lewinski that they should avoid using the Oval Office phone because someone might be listening in. He was referring to Israel.

To be sure, the Jewish state’s high-tech sector has been much assisted in its effort by “own goals” provided by the United States, which allows Israel to bid on government contracts relating to national security, virtually guaranteeing that any technical innovations will be stolen and re-exported by Israeli high-tech companies. Major technology innovators like Intel, which works with the NSA, have set up shop in Israel and have publicly stated, “We think of ourselves as an Israeli company as much as a U.S. company.” Vulture capitalist Zionist billionaire Paul Singer has recently been accused of steering highly paid U.S. tech sector jobs to Israel, jobs that are lost to the American economy forever.

So, Israel is a leader in using electronic resources to carry out espionage and collect information on various targets of interest. Israel is also an innovator, and its close relationship with the U.S. intelligence community (IC), most particularly the NSA, means that technologies and procedures developed by the Jewish state will inevitably show up in America.

The U.S. is in any event working hard on its own tools for managing the public, spurred by Covid-19 hysteria. Special ID cards could help track the health status of individuals. This status would be recorded and updated on a chip readable by government scanners that, by some accounts, might be either carried or even permanently embedded in everyone’s body. Another plan being promoted in a joint venture by Apple and Google that appears to have White House support involves “add[ing] technology to their smartphone platforms that will alert users if they have come into contact with a person with Covid-19. People must opt into the system, but it has the potential to monitor about a third of the world’s population” with monitoring done by central computers. Once the legal principle is established that phones can be manipulated to do what is now an “illegal search,” there are no technical or practical limits to what other tasks could also be performed.

Developments in Israel

With those steps being taken to control the movements of possibly infected citizens in mind, some recent developments in Israel are, to put it mildly, ominous. The Jewish state is currently achieving multi-level 24/7 surveillance of everyone residing in the country conducted in real time. Investigative reporter and peace activist Richard Silverstein describes in some detail why it is happening now, what it means, and how it works.

Per Silverstein, Israel, like every other authoritarian state, is currently taking advantage of the distraction caused by the coronavirus pandemic. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, whose political fortunes seemed to be on the wane due to three hung elections, exploited the fear of the virus to assume emergency powers and obtain Knesset approval to use a highly classified national database “compiled by the Shin Bet and comprising private personal data on every Israeli citizen, both Jewish and Palestinian. In the aftermath of 9/11, Israel’s Knesset secretly assigned its domestic intelligence agency the task of creating the database, which was ostensibly meant as a counterterrorism measure.”

The database, nicknamed “The Tool,” includes names, addresses, phone numbers, employment, and educational information but it goes well beyond that in using phone tracking data to record every phone call made by the individual to include names and numbers of those called and the geo-location of where the call was made from. Phone tracking also enabled Shin Bet to create a log of where the caller traveled in Israel and the occupied territories. Internet use, if active on the phone, was also recorded. It is as complete and total surveillance of an individual as is possible to obtain and it does not involve any human participation at all, every bit of it being done by computer.

Netanyahu publicly proclaimed his intention to use the database, stating that it would be employed to combat the coronavirus, which he described as a threat to national survival. As a result of the claimed crisis, he and his principal opponent, Blue and White party leader Benny Gantz, were able to come to terms on April 20 to form a “national emergency unity government” with Netanyahu as prime minister yet again.

The exploitation of the fear of the virus plus that revelation about Israel’s powerful technical tool to thwart it produced a victory for Netanyahu, who effectively portrayed himself as a strong and indispensable leader, erasing the stigma resulting from his pending trial on charges of massive corruption while in office. One of the first steps Netanyahu will reportedly take is to replace the attorney general and state prosecutor who were seeking to send him to prison, effectively taking away the threat that he might go to prison.

The exposure of the existence of the database inevitably led to charges that Netanyahu had, for personal gain, revealed Israel’s most powerful counterterrorism weapon. There were also concerns about the significance of the huge body of personal information collected by Shin Bet, to include suggestions that it constituted a gross violation of civil liberties. But carefully stoked fear of the virus combined with some political deals and maneuvers meant that use of the data was eventually approved by the Knesset security committee at the end of March.

Israel, which has closed its borders, and which still has a relatively low level of coronavirus infections and deaths, has already started using the Shin Bet database while also turning the attempts to deal with the disease as something like an intelligence war. The information obtained from “The Tool” enables the police and military to determine if someone were standing near someone else for more than a few minutes. If the contact included someone already infected, all parties are placed under quarantine. Any attempt to evade controls leads to arrest and punishment of a six-month prison term plus a $1,500 fine. Armed soldiers patrolling the streets are empowered to question anyone who is out and about.

Mossad is also involved in fighting the virus, boasting of having “stolen” 100,000 face masks and also respirators from a neighboring country presumed to be the United Arab Emirates. Silverstein observes that “Israel’s far-right government has militarized the contagion. Just as a hammer never met a nail it didn’t want to pound, it is only natural for a national security state like Israel to see Covid-19 as a security threat just as much or more than a health threat.” And when it comes to bioweapons, Israel is no parvenu. Ironically, the hidden story behind the “war on the coronavirus” is that Israel is itself one of the most advanced states in developing and testing biological weapons at its lab at Nes Tziona.

Returning to the emergence of “The Tool,” hardline Defense Minister Naftali Bennett has also suggested monetizing the product by selling a “civilian version of it,” to include its operating system, analytic capabilities, and setup details to foreign countries, including the United States. Israel has already successfully marketed to security agencies and governments a similar product called Pegasus, which has been described as the most sophisticated malware on the market.

Like The Tool, Pegasus does data mining and real-time analysis of individuals based on a range of collection techniques. The Israeli cyber company NSO Group that markets Pegasus was recently involved in an attempt to hack Facebook-owned secure communications system Whats-App, targeting journalists and political activists, on behalf of an unknown client. Ironically, it is believed that Facebook had earlier used NSO Group’s somewhat shadowy services. Perhaps more notoriously, Pegasus was also used to monitor contacts and establish physical location in the case of journalist Jamal Khashoggi, who was murdered by Saudi intelligence agents in Istanbul.

So, Americans should beware when confronted by the new cyber-security software being promoted by Israel because the Jewish state is also exporting its own vision of a centrally controlled militarized state where all rights are potentially sacrificed for security. As whistleblower Edward Snowden has already revealed, the NSA has the capability to collect vast amounts of information on citizens. If the United States government falls for the bait and moves in the Israeli direction, using that data to enable the surveillance and manage all the people all the time, the temptation will be great to employ the new capability even if its use is not strictly speaking warranted.

And there will be no one there to say nay to the new powers, not in Congress, on the Supreme Court or in the White House. And the media will be on board, too, arguing that security against external and internal threats requires some infringements of individual rights. It is one of the ironies of history that the United States of America, with its vast resources, large population and legacy of individual freedom, has been becoming more like its tiny militarized client state Israel. It is a tendency that must be resisted at all costs by every American who cares about fundamental liberties.

The Meaning of Corona: Gilad Atzmon at Jason Liosatos Outside The Box.

BY GILAD ATZMON

Jason & Gilad.png

In this interview I elabore together with Jason Liosatos on the prospect of a Corona paradigm shift, escalating the Coronavirus crisis into a criminal investigation. Is it a bio-lab accident, or may be a bio-weapon mutating into a mass killer? who could and should investigate the possible culprit(s)? I offer some basic mathematical tools that could help to track down and identify the possible origin of the virus. If you regard yourself as a critical being you may enjoy this conversation.

To learn more about the Corona being a possible crime scene: https://gilad.online/writings/2020/4/11/a-viral-pandemic-or-a-crime-scene

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