Trump Foreign Policy as Theater of the Absurd

A nightmare that one never wakes up from

PHILIP GIRALDI • SEPTEMBER 10, 2019

One might be forgiven for thinking that the foreign policy of the United States is some kind of theatrical performance, like a comic opera, with new characters appearing on stage willy-nilly and then being driven off after committing an incredible faux pas only to be replaced by even more grotesquely clownish figures. Unfortunately, while the musical chairs and plot twists contrived by a Goldoni or Moliere generally have a cheerful ending, the same cannot be said about what has been taking place in the White House.

The latest White House somewhat unexpected departure was that of ex-real estate lawyer Jason Greenblatt, who has been hanging around for over two years putting together the Deal of the Century for the Middle East. The Deal will reportedly end forever the possibility of any real Palestinian state but has run into a problem because Israel does not want its hands tied in any way while the Saudis and friends are reluctant to come up with the cash to fund the arrangement. Back to square one, though the Administration has replaced Greenblatt with thirty-year old Avi Berkowitz, whose only qualification for the position is that he is a friend of presidential son-in-law Jared Kushner whose most recent job at the White House consisted of managing “daily logistics like getting coffee…” The president is nevertheless still insisting that the peace plan will be revealed in all its glory after the Israeli election on September 17th.

Another administration notable who now appears to be waiting for the hook to come out from offstage and take him away is National Security Adviser John Bolton. Bolton has long been regarded by those who still believe that Donald Trump actually has a heart and a mind as the eminence grise seated behind the throne who has encouraged the president’s bad angels. That may indeed be so, but leaks are now suggesting that the president has been disagreeing with his chief minister and marginalizing his presence in meetings. But as bad as Bolton truly is, one should not dismiss from consideration Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Vice President Mike Pence, both of whom, like Bolton, have exhibited extraordinary ability to provide bad advice and to simultaneously say and do stupid things.

Pence’s recent error plagued trip to Ireland left one exasperated Irish journalist complaining that it was as if the Vice President had been invited to someone’s home and had “shat on the new carpet in the spare room, the one you bought specially for him” before his departure. Pence had unwisely made comments about Brexit that were both uninformed and regarded as “humiliating” by his hosts. But his real crime was that he blamed his boss for the ridiculous decision to stay at a Trump property 180 miles away from Dublin. President Trump denied the claim and, as he does not like being embarrassed by his subordinates, there is already talk that Pence will be replaced on the Republican ticket in 2020. Unfortunately, Attila the Hun is no longer available but it is certain that the GOP will be able to come up with someone else who will, like Pence, offend almost everyone. Tom Cotton maybe? Nikki Haley?

Now that North Korea is not cooperating with Trump’s distinctive brand of diplomacy, the Great Negotiator has turned to America (and Israel’s) enemy number one, suggesting a sit down with Iranian President Hassan Rouhani. The only problem with that is that Rouhani is not playing because the United States has been engaged in nothing less than “maximum pressure” economic warfare against his country. End the sanctions and Rouhani would consider talking directly.

Israel, of course, is deeply concerned lest American and Iranian heads of government actually get together to discuss things. According to some observers, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is believed to be somewhat nervous over that possibility and wants to get a hotter war going in the region to disrupt any consideration of entente between Tehran and Washington. That is why the Israelis have been escalating their attacks against claimed “Iranian targets” in Syria, Iraq and Lebanon, an initiative intended to provoke an Iranian reaction which will then be escalated by Netanyahu to draw Washington in supporting Israel while also putting an end to any consideration of top-level talks.

As a side show to the deep thinking going on in the White House, there is the Iranian tanker saga. One might recall that the tanker Adrian Darya 1, which claimed to be registered in Panama while carrying alleged Iranian oil allegedly bound for Syria, was halted in Gibraltar by the British at the request of the American State Department even though it was in international waters at the time. The U.S. has been sanctioning nearly everything having to do with Iran, to include its export of oil, and is also enforcing sanctions imposed on the government in Syria. Pompeo claimed, in fact, that he had “reliable information” the ship was transporting oil to Syria in defiance of wide-ranging U.S. and European Union initiated sanctions directed against the regime of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad over false claims that it had been using chemical weapons. The Treasury Department added that the vessel was “blocked property” under an anti-terrorist order, and “anyone providing support to the Adrian Darya 1 risks being sanctioned.”

After six weeks detention, the British released the tanker on August 18th when a Gibraltar judge ruled that there were no grounds for seizing it in the first place, adding that it could not be turned over to Washington. Since that time, it has been making its way across the Mediterranean headed for ports unknown. It is, inevitably, being stalked by the United States Navy, which may or may not attempt to take control of it before it heads to shore in Lebanon or Syria.

The entire situation is farcical, but here is where the fun comes in: Brian Hook, a true Trumpean know-nothing who somehow has been designated U.S. Grand Poobah for Iran, sent an email on August 26th to the ship’s Indian captain Akhilesh Kumar. The message said “This is Brian Hook . . . I work for secretary of state Mike Pompeo… I am writing with good news.”

The “good news” consisted of an offer to give Captain Kumar millions of dollars if he would sail the Adrian Darya 1 to a port that would impound the ship for the U.S. Kumar did not respond to the offer to turn pirate and steal the vessel, so “Captain” Hook dropped the hammer in a second email, writing that: “With this money you can have any life you wish and be well-off in old age. If you choose not to take this easy path, life will be much harder for you.”

The sublimely ridiculous proposal to Kumar comes on top of a similar appeal from the Department of State, which last week offered rewards of up to $15 million for information that would enable the disruption of the financial mechanisms used by Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC). State, acting through its humorously named “Rewards for Justice” program, will pay money for any information regarding the revenue sources of the IRGC, which was listed as a foreign terrorist organization in April.

The State Department announced the rewards at a briefing late last Wednesday morning, with Brian Hook saying that “The IRGC trains, funds, and equips proxy organizations across the Middle East. Iran wants these groups to extend the borders of the regime’s revolution and sow chaos and sectarian violence. We are using every available diplomatic and economic tool to disrupt these operations.”

Having experienced schemes involving paying rewards for information while I was overseas with the CIA, I can with considerable confidence predict that the U.S. Embassies in Turkey and Dubai will be flooded with desperate Iranians peddling what stories they have made up in exchange for money or visas. The actual information obtained will be approaching zero.

The American beneficence towards the Middle East currently also includes, apparently, intervening yet again in Syria to prevent the Syrian Army and its Iranian and Russian allies from eliminating the last major terrorist pocket in the country’s Idlib province. Fact is, it is the United States being led by the nose by Israel that has both supported terrorists and created most of the unrest and violence in the Middle East, central Asia and North Africa.

Additionally, also last week, the Treasury Department’s Office for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence headed by Under Secretary Sigal Mandelker, an Israeli, sanctioned more than two-dozen entities and individuals as well as 11 ships allegedly supporting IRGC oil shipments going to Bashar al-Assad’s Syria and other “illicit actors.” One has to wonder if the Treasury’s Office “for Terrorism” might actually be “for Terrorism” as long as it is carried out by the U.S. and its “best friend and closest ally” in the Middle East.

All in all, one hell of a week. A Greenblatt gone replaced by a Berkowitz, possibly Bolton and Pence going, piracy on the high seas, cash for info schemes, and lots more sanctions. Can’t get much more exciting than that, but let’s wait for next week to see what Donald Trump will give his good buddy Benjamin Netanyahu as a pre-electoral gift. Rumor has it that it will include American recognition of Israel’s right to annex most of the rest of the West Bank plus security guarantees that the U.S. will have the Jewish state’s back no matter what it seeks to do with its neighbors. Stay tuned!

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

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Conspiracy Theories From the Elders of Zion to Epstein’s Youngsters

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Following Jeffery Epstein’s alleged suicide last week we have been deluged by a tsunami of narratives that do not adhere to the shifting official reports of his death. Presumably a few of the intimate secrets of the most powerful people on this planet will be buried with Epstein. While it is rational to believe that people powerful enough to impoverish continents or launch world wars that kill tens of millions could easily arrange the death of a single registered sex criminal in a NY prison cell, anyone who advanced such a scenario, however plausible, was immediately denounced as a ‘conspiracy theorist.’ 

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‘Conspiracy theory’ is how the mainstream media characterizes any narrative that differs from their reporting of the official line.  What is a conspiracy theory? Can it be defined in categorical terms? Can a conspiracy theory be validated forensically or refuted by similar means? What criteria can be used to differentiate between a conspiracy theory and theoretical musings?

The labelling of a theory as ‘conspiratorial’ is an attempt to discredit its author/authors and deny its validity. A ‘conspiracy theory’ usually involves an explanatory thesis that points to a malevolent plot often involving a secretive interested party.  The term ‘conspiracy theory’ has a pejorative connotation: its use suggests that the theory appeals to prejudice and/or involves a farfetched, unsubstantiated narrative built on insufficient evidence.

Those who oppose conspiracy theories argue that such theories resist falsification and are reinforced by circular reasoning, that such theories are primarily based on beliefs, as opposed to academic or scientific reasoning.

But this critique is also not exactly based on valid scholarly principles. It isn’t just ‘conspiracy theories’ that resist falsification or are reinforced by circular reasoning. The philosopher Karl Popper, who defined the principle of falsifiability, would categorically maintain that Freudian psychoanalysis and Marxism fail for the same reasons. The Oedipal complex, for instance, has never been scientifically proven and can’t be scientifically falsified or validated.  Marxism also resists falsification. Despite Marx’s ‘scientific’ predictions, the proletarian revolution never occurred.  I have personally never come across anyone who refers to Marx or Freud as ‘conspiracy theorists.’  ‘Resisting falsification’ and “reinforced by circular reasoning,” are traits of non-scientific theories and do not apply only to ‘conspiracy theories.’

The Oxford English Dictionary defines conspiracy theory as “the theory that an event or phenomenon occurs as a result of a conspiracy between interested parties; spec. a belief that some covert but influential agency (typically political in motivation and oppressive in intent) is responsible for an unexplained event”.

The Oxford dictionary does not set forth the criteria that define a conspiracy theory in categorical terms. The history of mankind is saturated with references to hidden plots led by influential parties.

The problem with refuting conspiracy theories is that they are often more elegant and explanatory than the official competing narratives.  Such theories have a tendency to ascribe blame to hegemonic powers. In the past, conspiracy theories were popular mostly amongst fringe circles, they are now becoming commonplace in mass media. Alternative narratives are widely disseminated through social media. In some cases, they have been disseminated by official news outlets and even by the current American president.  It is possible that the rapid rise in popularity of alternative explanatory theories is an indication of a growing mistrust of the current ruling class, its ideals, its interests and its demography.

The response to the story of Jeffrey Epstein’s suicide is illustrative. The official narrative provoked a reaction that was a mixture of disbelief expressed in satire and inspired a plethora of theories that attempted to explain the saga that had escalated into the biggest sex scandal in the history of America and beyond.

The obvious question is what has led to the increase in popularity of so called ‘conspiracy theories’? I would push it further and ask, why is a society that claims to be ‘free’ is threatened by the rise of alternative explanatory narratives?

In truth, the question is itself misleading. No one is really afraid of ‘conspiracy theories’ per se.  You will not be arrested or lose your job for being a ‘climate change denier.’  You may speculate on and even deny the moon landing as much as you like. You are free to speculate about Kennedy’s assassination as long as you don’t mention the Mossad.  You can even survive being a 911 truther and espouse as many alternative narratives as you like, however, the suggestion that ‘Israel did 911’ will  get you into serious trouble. Examining ‘The Protocols of the Elders of Zion’ as a fictional, however prophetic, piece of literature can lead to imprisonment in some countries. Digging into the true origin of Bolshevism and the demographics of the Soviet revolution is practically a suicidal act. Telling the truth about Hitler’s agreement with the Zionist agency will definitely result in your expulsion from the British Labour party and you will be accused of being at the least, theoretically conspiratorial .

I suspect that one is allowed to deviate from the official narrative and speculate on hidden plots on any given topic except probably the Jewish related ones.

This is where things become complicated because there are no Jewish conspiracies, all is done in the open.  Israel, Zionism, Jewish institutions and individuals operate in the public eye and don’t conceal their actions.  AIPAC doesn’t attempt to hide its agenda nor do America’s elected politicians make an effort to cover their shameless capitulation at AIPAC conferences. Labour Friends of Israel is acting against  the Labour party and its democratically elected leader is mainstream news. The Israeli jets that attacked the USS Liberty on 8 June 1967 were decorated with Jewish symbols. Jeffery Epstein didn’t disguise his ‘Pedophile Island’. He operated in the open. I am afraid that there is not much evidence of Jewish conspiracies. But there is plenty of evidence of institutional suppression of any attempt to discuss any of this. AIPAC’s agenda is openly avowed, criticising its agenda is strictly forbidden. The same applies to other Israel Lobby activity, Israeli war crimes and even crimes committed by Jewish individuals. Jewish power, as I define it, is the power to suppress discussion of Jewish power.

For obvious reasons Jews are alarmed by theories that focus on their politics, culture, religion, folklore etc. It seems that Jewish bodies have been sufficiently forceful to silence most attempts to criticise Jewish and Israeli politics. That leads to the question of why Jews, Zionism, Judaism and Jewishness are so often the subject of conspiratorial theories. Is it that anti Semitic prejudice again or is there perhaps something about Jewish ideology, culture and politics that invites such theories?  It is worth consulting Jesse Walker’s The United States of Paranoia: A Conspiracy Theory. According to Walker there are five kinds of conspiracy theories:

  • The “Enemy Outside” refers to theories based on figures alleged to be scheming against a community from without.

  • The “Enemy Within” finds conspirators lurking inside the nation, indistinguishable from ordinary citizens.

  • The “Enemy Above” involves powerful people manipulating events for their own gain.

  • The “Enemy Below” features the lower classes working to overturn the social order.

  • The “Benevolent Conspiracies” are angelic forces that work behind the scenes to improve the world and help people.

It is fairly easy to figure out that each of Walker’s conspiracy types describes an openly manifested aspect of Jewish politics, culture or religion.

The  ‘Enemy Outside’ could be a legitimate American patriotic/nationalist reaction to foreign domination of American foreign policy. This kind of argument is supported by well-researched academic studies such as that of Mearshehimer and Walt as well as that of James Petras who studied the Israel Lobby and its impact.  Such hostile foreign domination has been explored by various media outlets including Al Jazeera’s exposé of the Israel Lobby in both Britain and the USA. The current American administration and its biased policy in favour of Israeli positions gives credence to those who see Israel as the ‘enemy outside.’ Yet, none of the above has ‘conspired’ behind the scenes. All is done in the open. You just can’t discuss it in the open.

The ‘Enemy Within’ could easily point at  the intensive work of Israel advocates, Jewish  Lobbies (AIPAC, J Street, etc.) and Israeli stooges within American politics  and other Western countries (Britain, France etc). Similarly, those who uphold deep Christian values may identify Jewish progressive elements  as the enemy of their conservative life style. The same applies to anti immigration advocates who see Jewish pro immigration supporters as their enemies from within. The prominent role of Kushner and his proximity to the president doesn’t help gainsay doubts about the so called ‘enemy within.’  But the Jewish Lobby in America is loud and provocative and Jewish  progressive and pro immigration supporters are at least as loud. Kushner doesn’t hide his affiliation with Chabbad or his Zionist sympathies.  There is no hidden plot, yet, you can’t discuss this openly.

The ‘Enemy Above’ is an apt description of Epstein’s close orbit and its high connectivity within the world’s ruling classes. And, as we know, Epstein didn’t bother to conceal his operation. Calling his Boeing 727 the Lolita Express was little short of titling his private fleet ‘Pedo Air’ or  ‘United PedoLines.’  Bernie Madoff falls within the same rubric. The man who was at one point NASDAQ’s Chairman, didn’t work that hard to disguise his Ponzi scheme, in fact Madoff admitted that he was surprised by law enforcement’s failure to uncover his crimes.  Some might regard George Soros as a prototype of the ‘enemy above.’ Soros is a Jewish billionaire who uses his wealth to fund identiterian causes and social changes that are not exactly welcomed by the conservative/nationalist crowd. Again, Soros doesn’t hide a thing. He does his funding through his Open Society Institute. Yet, for some reason, criticism of Soros’ agenda is frequently denounced as perpetuating ‘conspiracy theories’.

The ‘Enemy Below’ can be illustrated by Jewish involvement with revolutionary movements, human rights campaigns, the gender revolution, the feminist movement, LGBTQA  advocacy and so on. Again none of this occurs behind a curtain. Jews often boast of their prominent role in these liberal and humanitarian causes. But criticism of these movements, and especially their supporters, is pretty much forbidden.

‘Benevolent Conspiracies’ are demonstrated by Tikun Olam‘s philosophy: the idea that it is down to the Jews to ‘fix the world and reinstate its ethics.’ Those who refuse to ‘be fixed’ may well see Jewish elements at the core of a progressive cause and may see a malevolent dark force in such altruism.

Most ethnic or interest groups fit into only one or two of the types described by Walker’s  Conspiracy Theory Model, Jewish politics fit with them all. In the eyes of ardent bigoted European nationalists such as Tommy Robinson, Muslims immigrants represent an ‘Enemy Outside.’ Racists who hate Black people may see those with dark skin as the  ‘Enemy Within.’ Those who disapprove of Gays and their culture may find them to be the ‘enemy below.’ Still it is bizarre how easily Walker’s entire five conspiracy theory types can be found among Jewish politics, individuals, institutions, activist networks and campaigns.

How is it possible that one relatively small ethnic group manages to embody all the types of ‘conspiracy theories?’ In my recent book Being in Time, I argue that Jews tend to dominate the discourses that are relevant to their existence and interests. I refer to it as Jewish survival instinct. Jewish activists and intellectuals also tend to dominate the dissent to problematic symptoms associated with their group identity: Jews are often, for instance, associated with capitalism, banking and wealth in general, and Jews are also equated with Marxist and socialist opposition to capitalism, banking and wealth. Obviously, many Jews are associated with the Jewish State and the Zionist project but it is no secret that Leftist Jews also dominate the anti Zionist discourse and politics. Jews, at least in the eyes of some, are leading pro immigration advocates. But some of the most vocal anti immigration and anti Muslim campaigners are also Jewish. In Being in Time I argue that the fact that Jews dominate both polls of pretty much every topic relevant to their existence isn’t necessarily ‘conspiratorial.’ It is only natural for ethical and humanist Jews to oppose Zionism, or Wall Street. It is also natural based on their history, for Jews as a group to simultaneously oppose and support immigration. Natural as it may be, the presence of Jews in key ideological, political, cultural and financial  positions is undeniable. It is more than likely that their domination on both sides of so many crucial political debates invites conspiratorial thoughts.

Jewish economist Murray Rothbard  contrasts “deep” conspiracy theories with “shallow” ones. According to Rothbard, a shallow theorist observes an event and asks, who benefits? He or she then jumps to the conclusion that the posited beneficiary is responsible for covertly influencing events. Under this theory, Israel benefiting from the events of 9/11 made it into a prime suspect.  This is often a completely legitimate strategy and is exactly how detective and investigative researchers operate. In order to identify the culprit, they may well ask who would benefit from the crime. Of course this is only a first step towards substantiation.

According to Rothbard the “deep” conspiracy theorist begins with a hunch and then seeks out evidence.  Rothbard describes deep conspiracy theory as the result of confirming whether certain facts actual fit one’s initial ‘paranoia.’ This explanation pretty much describes a lot of how science works.  Any given scientific theory defines the realm of facts that may support or refute its validity.  Science is a deductive reasoning process, so that in science, it is the theory that defines the relevance of the evidence. Would Rothbard describe Newtonian physics as ‘deeply conspiratorial’? I doubt it. My guess is that, bearing Rothbard in mind, attributing a ‘conspiratorial nature’ to a theory is an attempt the deny the relevance of the evidence it brings to light.  If for instance, the theory that Epstein was a Mossad agent is ‘conspiratorial,’ then the facts that he was a business partner of Ehud Barak and involved in a company that uses Israeli military intelligence tactics become irrelevant. The same applies to former Federal Prosecutor Alex Acosta’s admission that Epstein belonged to intelligence  and that was why he was the beneficiary of a laughable plea deal. If, for example, the theory that it was the Jews who led the 1917 Bolshevik revolution is ‘conspiratorial,’ then the facts regarding the demography that led the revolution and its criminal nature are of no consequence. The labelling of a theory as conspiratorial is an attempt to erase uncomfortable evidence by reprioritising the relevance of certain facts.

It seems that Rothbard and others have failed to produce categorical criteria to identify or define Conspiracy Theories. We may have to accept that as of now, there is no categorical standard to define a conspiracy theory. We may have to learn to live with the fact that some theories are superior; simpler and more elegant than others. We will have to accept that some of these theories make a few people pretty uncomfortable and they will explore every avenue to discredit such theories and their authors. Attributing a conspiratorial nature to an explanatory theory is just one of these methods.


My battle for truth and freedom involves some expensive legal and security services. I hope that you will consider committing to a monthly donation in whatever amount you can give. Regular contributions will enable me to avoid being pushed against a wall and to stay on top of the endless harassment by Zionist operators attempting to silence me and others.

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Axis of Resistance Frustrated Three Phases of the Project for a ‘New Middle East’

Trump Kushner

Al-Manar Website Editor

August 13, 2019

The first phase of the so-called New Middle East was just after ‘the Summit of Peacemakers’ in 1996, when former Israeli premier Shimon Peres applied his New Middle East vision by declaring the “Operation Grapes of Wrath” on Lebanon for 16 days in April 1996.

During the 2006 Lebanon war, former US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice announced the beginning of the New Middle East. After almost one decade of political attempts to resolve the Arab- Israeli conflict, the US decided to use a brute force to eliminate what it saw an impediment to the ‘peaceful’ resolution of the conflict by pushing ‘Israel’ to attack Lebanon, destroying its infrastructures.

The first phase of the above mentioned project has fallen after the US-Israeli failure to impose their conditions for the 2006 ceasefire agreement on Lebanon. It was Lebanon which emerged victorious after a 33-day war, as declared by Hezbollah Secretary General Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah. It was the resistance of Hezbollah that turned the table on the New Middle East project, said the Winograd Commission report, after the investigation of the causes of failure in the 2006 war.

In 2011, the second phase of the scheme has started, Syria was the battlefield. However, the US-backed terrorists failed to overthrow the Syrian government, and the second phase was over. Then, the old Shimon Peres vision was revitalized and there was the third phase of the so-called New Middle East project.

The US administration proposed an economic approach, allegedly to resolve the Arab-Israeli conflict, in a bid to gain in politics what it couldn’t achieve in the war.

US President Donald Trump sent Jared Kushner, his son-in-law, who is presented as the godfather of the ‘Deal of Century’, to the region. Kushner decided to replace the well-known slogan of “land for peace” principle with his own one: “peace to prosperity”.  He believes that such a slogan could reduce the conflict to an economic problem that can be resolved by improving the living standards of the Palestinians.

The absence of a draft solution for major political issues, particularly Palestinian statehood, the status of Al-Quds (Jerusalem), and the Palestinians’ right to return to their land, turns Kushner proposal to be a mere attempt to bribe the Palestinians into giving up self-determination.

The funding issue is also a significant factor of disruption for that deal, especially that EU, the traditional donor, did not participated in the workshop in Bahrain, neither Russia, nor China.

Meanwhile, Saudi Arabia, which has shown an extreme enthusiasm for the deal, has been already facing an economic problem and the war in Yemen, which has cost it billions of dollars. The US, where the proposal was launched, certainly would not spend that much money, particularly under Trump administration, who prides himself on extracting monetary concessions from other countries, including Saudi Arabia by extortion, or by the arm sales.

The development and prosperity that Kushner is heralding can only happen if the Israeli occupation is ended.

In contrast, the Trump administration has already made major steps in strengthening the pillars of the occupation, including recognizing Israeli annexation of Al-Quds and the Golan Heights.

With all these major flaws, it was hardly surprising that the Bahrain Workshop failed to jump-start the deal process.

The Axis of Resistance is accomplishing important steps in the warfare in Syria, Yemen and Iraq, preventing Trump and his allies to step forward for the announcement of the “Deal of Century” that could eradicate the Palestinian cause in favor of the Israeli occupation. Hence, the third phase of the New Middle east has also failed.

A flashback to Madrid conference in 1990: the peace process had been built on the principle of “land for peace”, where ‘Israel’ withdrew from occupied Arab land in 1967 in exchange for peace and normalization of ties with the Palestinians and Arabs.

The 1993 Oslo Accord provided a political vision for Shimon Peres’s plan – a two-state solution – which was followed by the 1994 Paris Protocol that established rules regulating economic relations between the Palestinians and Israelis.

This vision was also the core of the 2002 Arab Peace Initiative proposed by Saudi Arabia in Beirut Arab League summit.

Needless to say, all past proposals have failed for one simple reason: They were all in favor of the Israeli occupation of Palestine.

Source: Al-Manar English Website

Americans Are Consigning Themselves to the Trash Bin of History

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July 26, 2019

Paul Craig Roberts

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The Democrats are even more insane than I thought.  The Trump-hater Nadler had a press conference with other Trump-hating Democrats and claimed, despite the absence of any evidence from Mueller, that Trump is a criminal.  Reassured by this certitude, the Democrats will continue their impeachment investigation, says Nadler.  

Among the most crazed elements of the Democrats, Mueller is no longer the hero. Mueller sold out to Trump in order to protect himself, as Trump was going to have Mueller assassinated if Mueller did not clear him.  This conspiracy theory comes from those who ridicule skeptics of the official 9/11 story and various of the school shootings. The dastardly Mueller, more concerned with protecting himself than with cleansing the government of the Trump evil, suppressed the evidence of Trump’s guilt in order to save his own ass.  

Image result for Americans Are Consigning Themselves to the Trash Bin of HistoryIn other words, the Democrats, deserted by their hero, cannot let go of the orchestration we call “Russiagate.”

It is enough to drive a person to despair that among the abundant evidence of American election interference, no attention is given by Democrats to interference by the Israel Lobby, the pharmaceutical lobby, the oil lobby, the Wall Street Lobby, the military/security complex lobby.  Sheldon Adelson, a single individual with a fortune from casino gambling of $33 billion, 300 million dollars, has more clout on the outcome of US presidential elections than Putin. These few lobbies mentioned above have resources berween them in excess of the GDP of Russia.  It is totally impossible for Russia to outbid them.

Assume that Russia, whose Gross Domestic Product is overshadowed by the resources of the Forbes 400, would try to compete with, for example, the Israel Lobby, in determining US foreign policy.  If Russia could compete with the Israel Lobby in controlling American political outcomes, would the Middle East have been destroyed by Washington, with millions of displaced and dispossessed refugees overrunning all Western countries? Surely not. Is Russia happy that the destabilization of the Middle East threatens the Muslim provinces of the Russian Federation with jihadists? Obviously not.  Nevertheless, the instability that Washington has introduced into the Western world serves the rise of Russia and China, not America and its empire. 

One has to wonder how it serves the image and power of the United States to be portrayed, as it is portrayed, as fighting Israel’s wars for domination of the Middle East. How does the world avoid seeing the US of A as a two-bit vassal of Zionist Israel? Doesn’t Trump’s national security advisor, John Bolton, and Trump’s Jewish son-in-law make this perfectly clear every day? The President of the United States is nothing but the punk two-bit vassal of Zionism.

The US Department of State formerly was in the hands of “Arabists.”  Today it is in the hands of Zionists. Washington in its total incompetence has alligned with a tiny percentage of the population against the majority in the Middle East. This will come to no good result.

Trump/Kushner Deal of the Century: ‘Money, Money, Money, It’s A Rich Man’s World’

Trump/Kushner Deal of the Century: ‘Money, Money, Money, It’s A Rich Man’s World’

Former Israeli Prime Minister Golda Meir said that Palestinians did not exist, but if they did, she claimed that Jews always had a ‘supreme morality.’ Her infamous contention, ’Peace will come when the Arabs will love their children more than they hate us’ displayed a belief that Palestinian Arabs were barely human.

Cruelty by discrimination became explicit in the Jewish Nation State Law of August 2018, which says this state actualises its national, religious and historical rights for self-determination. The distinguished Israeli journalist Gideon Levy concluded that through this law, Israel had adopted apartheid as a form of government, bolstered by the ‘moral rot’ of a ‘legal system far removed from fundamental principles of equality and justice.’

The latest demand to maintain the superiority of one people over another comes from the Israeli Ambassador to the UN, Danny Danon. In a New York Times Opinion piece, he wrote as a leader of a master race. Armed with his assumptions about the merits of top down abuses of power, about humiliation as a policy, and cruelty to inferiors taken for granted, he advised that the best the Palestinians could do is surrender. They should negotiate without any prospect of a State. ‘A national suicide of Palestinians’ current political and cultural ethos is what is needed for peace.’

Danon associated himself with what he calls Western Liberalism, as illustrated by the ‘natural right of the Jewish people to be masters of their own fate in their own sovereign state.’ By contrast, an inferior people such as Palestinians could not have rights to self-determination, even though those rights are made clear in Article 1 of the Charter of the UN.

Consistent with a New York real estate agent’s technique for softening up powerless tenants before evicting them, Trump had already humiliated Palestinians, yet asked them to accept his deal. The US Embassy in Israel had been moved to Jerusalem, Palestinian diplomatic offices in Washington were closed, most funds for the refugee agency UNRWA terminated, so too crucial financial support for Palestinian hospitals in East Jerusalem; then the Golan was annexed and renamed Trump Heights.

The New York Real Estate agency had become Cruelty Inc. There would be no withdrawal of settlements, no end to Israeli control of Palestinians’ lives and nothing to address the injustices to refugees. The Bahrein workshop was told the Palestinians could not secure a better offer.

Deception is another key ingredient in the cruelty mix. Kushner made fraudulent claims even as he appeared to be generous. Fifty billion dollars would generate recovery of the Palestinian economy even though any Palestinian economic development has been restricted by the occupation of the West Bank, the siege of Gaza and other military controls. The $50 billion would be pledged largely by Arab States but no pledges had been made.

In Bahrein, Kushner delivered his father-in-law’s notion that life is about deals and deals are about money. He spoke the Abba lyrics, ‘Money, money, money, must be funny…All the things I could do, If I had a little money, It’s a rich man’s world, It’s a rich man’s world.’ To Palestinians, nothing sounded funny.

Fragile but significant Lebanon could receive $6 billion from a plan geared mostly towards connecting Lebanon with Gaza and the West Bank but the Lebanese rejected this as a shameless bribe. They know that money will come and go whereas Palestinians will always pursue their human rights and ownership of their lands.

Hidden in the offer to the Lebanese was the long held Israeli view that by making Palestinians citizens of other countries, Jordan, Lebanon, Egypt, they could be made to disappear. Lebanon could be bullied, yet as home to 450,000 Palestinian and 1.5 million Syrian refugees, the Lebanese know that without politically just solutions to conflict, no economic initiatives could succeed.

Like fraudulent advertising to increase prospective home owners’ interests, the Kushner deal was presented as the carrot to attract all prospective buyers, even though Palestine was not for sale. Bill Law in the Journal Middle East Eye says that as with other Trump frauds, the deal of the century was not meant to work. The purpose was to pretend peace until more land had been stolen, more checkpoints erected, more night raids made on Palestinians’ homes and more weapons tested over Gaza. Ghassan Khatib from the Jerusalem Media and Communication Centre says,

‘It’s purpose was to buy time, kick dust, shift blame and thereby guarantee permanent Israeli control of the West Bank.’

In this post truth era when ideas about US domestic and foreign policy flow from a President’s tweets, there’s an inherent cruelty in a deal of the century which ignored decades old injustices, the occupation of Palestinian lands, the siege of Gaza, the continued containment of millions of refugees.

To pursue peace with justice for Palestinians and Israelis, politicians and other policy makers should cease being intimidated by a toxic Zionist lobby, and instead ponder Dr. Hanan Ashrawi’s judgement that the Kushner plan is ‘… totally divorced from reality. The elephant in the room is the occupation itself.’

In addition, we could all learn from Palestinian delegations’ reasons for boycotting the Bahrein workshop. They know that you don’t fight for freedom by giving it up.

As Trump Backs Down, the Pips Squeak

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FEATURED STORY

As Trump Backs Down, the Pips Squeak

Tom Luongo July 21, 2019

Last week it was all fire and brimstone. The US was threatening more sanctions on Iran, the Brits were seizing oil tankers and Iran was violating the JCPOA.

This week things look different all of a sudden. An oil tanker goes dark while passing through the Strait of Hormuz, the story fails to get any real traction and the US allows Iranian Foreign Minister, recently sanctioned, to do his job at the United Nations.

Trump then holds a cabinet meeting where he reiterates that

“We’re not looking for regime change. We want them out of Yemen.”

I thought National Security Advisor John Bolton said the US would apply pressure until “the pips squeak.”

Where the pips are squeaking is on the Arabian Peninsula, not across the Persian Gulf in Bandar Abbas. Specifically, I’m talking about the United Arab Emirates. The UAE sent a delegation to Tehran recently that coincided with its partial withdrawal of troops from Yemen.

That meeting, according to Elijah Magnier, focused on Emirates realizing they are in the middle of this conflict, up to their skyscrapers.

“The UAE would like to avoid seeing their country transformed into a battlefield between the US and Iran in case of war, particularly if Trump is re-elected. The Emirates officials noted that the US did not respond to Iran’s retaliation in the Gulf and in particularly when the US drone was downed. This indicates that Iran is prepared for confrontation and will implement its explicit menace, to hit any country from which the US carries out their attacks on Iran. We want to be out of all this”, an Emirates official told his Iranian counterpart in Tehran.

Iran promised to talk to the Yemeni officials to avoid hitting targets in Dubai and Abu Dhabi as long as the UAE pulls out its forces from the Yemen and stops this useless war. Saudi Crown Prime Mohammad Bin Salman is finding himself without his main Emirates ally, caught in a war that is unwinnable for the Saudi regime. The Yemeni Houthis have taken the initiative, hitting several Saudi strategic targets. Saudi Arabia has no realistic objectives and seems to have lost the appetite to continue the war in Yemen.

So, with the Houthis successfully striking major targets inside Saudi Arabia and the UAE abruptly pulling forces out, the war in Yemen has reached a critical juncture. Remember, the Republican-controlled Senate approved a bill withdrawing support for the war back in March, which the White House had to veto in support of its fading hopes for its Israeli/Palestinian deal pushed by Jared Kushner.

But things have changed significantly since then as that deal has been indefinitely postponed with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu facing a second election this fall after he failed to secure a stable coalition.

After that there was the failed economic conference in Bahrainin June where Kushner revealed the economic part of the plan to a half-empty room where only the backers of the plan showed any real support.

And that’s the important part of this story, because it was Kushner’s plan which was the impetus for all of this insane anti-Iran belligerence in the first place. Uniting the Gulf states around a security pact leveraging the U.S/Israeli/Saudi alliance was part of what was supposed to pressure the Palestinians to the bargaining table.

By placing maximum economic sanctions on both Hezbollah in Lebanon and Iran while continuing to foment chaos in Syria was supposed to force Israel’s enemies to fold under the pressure which would, in turn, see the Palestinians surrender to the will of Kushner and Bibi.

The problem is, it didn’t work. And now Trump is left holding the bag on this idiotic policy which culminated in an obvious provocation when Iran shot down a $220 million Global Hawk surveillance drone, nearly sparking a wider war.

But what it did was expose the US and not Iran as the cause of the current problems.

Since then Trump finally had to stand up and be the grown-up in the room, such as he is, and put an end to this madness.

The UAE understood the potential for Iran’s asymmetric response to US belligerence. The Saudis cannot win the war in Yemen that Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman began. The fallout from this war has been to push Qatar out of the orbit of the rest of the Gulf Cooperation Council, cutting deals with Iran over developing the massive North Pars gas field and pipelines to Europe.

And now the UAE has realized it is facing an existential threat to its future in any confrontation between Iran and the US

What’s telling is that Trump is making Yemen the issue to negotiate down rather than Iran’s nuclear ambitions. Because it was never about the nuclear program. It was always about Iran’s ballistic missile program.

And Secretary of State Mike Pompeo would have us believe that for the first time Iran’s missile program is on the negotiating table. I have no idea if that’s actually true, but it’s a dead giveaway that it’s what the US is after.

The main reason why Trump and Netanyahu are so angry about the JCPOA is the mutual outsourcing of the nuclear ballistic missile program by Iran and North Korea. North Korea was working on the warhead while Iran worked on the ballistic missile.

Trump tweeted about this nearly two years ago, confirming this link. I wrote about it when he did this.  Nearly everything I said about North Korea in the blog post is now applicable to Iran. This was why he hated the JCPOA, it didn’t actually stop the development of Iran and North Korea into nuclear states.

But tearing up the deal was the wrong approach to solving the problem. Stop pouring hundreds of billions of dollars in weapons to the region, as Iran’s Foreign Minister Javad Zarif pointed out recently, is the problem. By doing this he took both Russian President Vladimir Putin and Chinese Premier Xi Jinping off his side of the table.

Now he stands isolated with only the provocateurs – Israel, the U.K., Saudi Arabia – trying to goad him forward into doing something he doesn’t want to do. And all of those provocations that have occurred in the past month have failed to move either Trump or the Iranians. They’ve learned patience, possibly from Putin. Call it geopolitical rope-a-dope, if you will.

I said last month that the key to solving Iran’s nuclear ambitions was solving the relationship with North Korea. Trump, smartly, went there, doing what only he could do, talk with DPRK Chairman Kim Jong-Un and reiterate his sincere desire to end proliferation of nuclear weapons.

He can get Iran to the table but he’s going to have to give up something. So, now framing the negotiations with Iran around their demands we stop arming the Saudis is politically feasible.

Trump can’t, at this point, back down directly with Iran. Yemen is deeply unpopular here and ending our support of it would be a boon to Trump politically. Trading that for some sanctions relief would be a good first step to solving the mess he’s in and build some trust.

Firing John Bolton, which looks more likely every day, would be another.

He’s already turning a blind eye to Iranian exports to China, and presumably, other places. I think the Brits are acting independently trying to create havoc and burnish Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt’s resume as Prime Minister against Boris Johnson. That’s why they hijacked the oil tanker.

But all the little distractions are nothing but poison pills to keep from discussing the real issues. Trump just cut through all that. So did Iran. Let’s hope they stay focused.

‘Hysterical and Stupid’: Kushner Reveals His Attitude Towards the Palestinians

Wayne Madsen
July 12, 2019
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Jared Kushner, Donald Trump’s son-in-law and the person Trump appointed to broker a Middle East peace agreement recently called Palestinians “hysterical and stupid.” That is particularly galling language coming from a notorious New Jersey, New York, and Maryland slumlord and the son of a federally convicted criminal. Kushner’s father and real estate mogul, Charles Kushner, spent fourteen months in prison after being convicted of tax fraud and witness tampering, among other crimes. Jared Kushner believes his father was wrongly convicted and imprisoned. But the wunderkind son-in-law of Trump has no problem in maintaining the status quo in the Middle East, one that has led to the large-scale incarceration of the people of the Gaza Strip in virtual desert ghetto.

Mr. Kushner does not have the business acumen to run a New York City sandwich cart, let alone a major foreign policy initiative like a final Middle East peace agreement. Such a concordat has eluded a every US president since the creation of Israel in 1948. Kushner’s real estate bankruptcies are legendary, and they have resulted in him and his father panhandling for loan relief financing from Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Abu Dhabi, and China, among other countries.

In the wake of Kushner’s “Peace to Prosperity” plan unveiled at a workshop in Bahrain in June of this year, government officials around the world reacted with an almost-unanimous thumbs down. The Bahrain conference more resembled a meeting of potential investors in one of Kushner’s real estate scams. The Palestinians, claiming that to present an economic plan for the Palestinian territories prior to a political settlement, boycotted the Bahrain conclave. Under the “Kushner Plan,” Gaza was to become a tourist resort with transport routes through Israel to the West Bank. No mention was made of the crippling Israeli and Egyptian blockades imposed on the densely populated Gaza enclave of 1.8 million people. Kushner displayed his utter ignorance of geo-politics, history, and diplomacy when he said Palestinians would reap a financial whirlwind of real estate development and tourism investment money if “there’s not a fear of people doing terrorism.” Doing terrorism? In Kushner’s pampered rich kid myopic view of the world, “doing terrorism” is like “doing lunch” or “doing a Broadway show.”

Participating in Kushner’s gabfest, US Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin claimed that Kushner’s roll-out was like a “hot IPO,” an initial public offering of shares in a company. Seasoned Middle East experts, including diplomats and scholars, were far less enthusiastic, with one likening Kushner’s conference to a Monty Python sketch.

Kushner also lambasted the Palestinian leadership for saying “crazy things.” The son-in-law of the man who, on a daily basis, says and tweets “crazy things” believes that it is “crazy” for Palestinian leaders to condemn Israeli expansion into East Jerusalem, the West Bank, and the Golan Heights. In fact, “crazy” was Trump ordering the moving of the US embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, shuttering the US Consulate General in Jerusalem that served as the de facto US mission in Palestine, cutting off all US economic assistance to the Palestinians, closing the Palestinian diplomatic mission in Washington, and recognizing Israeli sovereignty over Syria’s Golan Heights.

Kushner called the Palestinians “stupid and hysterical.” However, nothing exemplifies hysterical and stupid more than Kushner family friend Binyamin Netanyahu, who once stood before the United Nations General Assembly and displayed a cartoon drawing of a bomb to “prove” that Iran was nearing development of a nuclear weapon. Netanyahu’s histrionics before the world assembly was not the first time he resorted to gimmickry and lying in order to tick off a list of favorite Zionist talking points.

Kushner does not appreciate the hyper-hysterical nature of Israel and its supporters, of which he is one. The Boycott, Divestment, and Sanction (BDS) movement targeting Israel’s racist and expansionist policies has resulted in hysterical extreme measures aimed at undercutting constitutional and other inherent freedoms of speech in other countries. These anti-free speech actions have been advanced by Kushner’s friends and colleagues and include twenty-eight American states enacting legislation that bans individuals and companies supporting BDS from receiving state government contracts. Israel’s intelligence service, Mossad, is actively working to disrupt the global BDS movement, including the operations of the Palestine Solidarity Campaign (PSC).

The anti-BDS campaign includes Mossad collecting intelligence on BDS operations in foreign countries and placing BDS leaders and supporters on INTERPOL and EUROPOL watch lists. Kushner’s Zionist friends have even spoken of Israel filing lawsuits against BDS organizations and individuals abroad. There was little surprise when Mossad’s anti-BDS activities in the United States were linked to the now-defunct Israeli private intelligence firm PSY-Group and Donald Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign.

Kushner can whine all day long about Palestinians being “hysterical.” No one is more hysterical and hypocritical than Kushner and his Orthodox Jewish cabal that includes the dodgy Chabad movement – which has been tied into everything from drug and human organ trafficking to tax evasion and money laundering, as well as the 2020 presidential campaign of New Jersey Democratic Senator Cory Booker. No sooner had New England Patriots football owner and Trump Mar-a-Lago club member Robert Kraft beat a criminal charge of soliciting prostitution from a Florida massage parlor employing Chinese indentured employees, he donated his $1 million Genesis Prize – Israel’s version of the Nobel Prize – to the anti-BDS movement. That kind of money would have paid for quite a lot of $57 “sessions” at Kraft’s favorite, but now closed, Florida massage parlor. Even though Kraft was dumb enough to get caught on video tape in a law enforcement sting on illegal prostitution activities, Kushner claims it is the Palestinians who are “stupid.”

Recently, Kushner’s friends in Israel and Germany forced the resignation of Dr. Peter Schäfer, a foremost scholar of Judaic Studies, as director of Berlin’s Jewish Museum. Using Inquisition-like tactics, Schäfer stood accused by Israel supporters of backing the BDS movement by tweeting a link to a letter signed by 240 Jewish and Israeli scholars opposing a bill passed by the German parliament that linked the BDS movement to anti-Semitism. The campaign against Dr. Schäfer was centered on the activities of an Israel-based organization called NGO Monitor. The group, which is nothing more than a cipher for Mossad, targets international non-governmental organizations tagged with being supportive of the Palestinians or the BDS movement.

Under pressure from such anti-democratic forces as NGO Monitor; its Geneva-based companion, UN Watch; the American Jewish Committee; and similar repugnant pressure organizations, the freedom of speech rights of pro-Palestine activists have been severely hampered by actions of the governments of Denmark, Sweden, Switzerland, the Netherlands, Australia, Canada, and other nations.

Mr. Kushner and his friends who gathered in Bahrain for his real estate development (land theft) prospectus seminar would trick the world into believing that it is the Palestinians who are “hysterical.” When international supporters of the Palestinians decide to hit the Israelis where it hurts the most – their wallets – all one can hear from the offices and board rooms of Tel Aviv, West Jerusalem, Haifa, Ashkelon, Eilat, Ramat Gan, New York, and other centers of Israeli commerce and intrigue is loud wailing and promises to “get even.” And Kushner accuses the Palestinians of being “hysterical.”

In fact, the Palestinians have been quite measured in response to Israel’s overt and covert campaigns against them and their inalienable rights. Since Trump and Kushner launched their diplomatic, political, and economic warfare against Palestine, the State of Palestine has been recognized by the International Atomic Energy Agency and Colombia; Italy voted for a UN Security Council for a resolution that opposed the US movement of its embassy to Jerusalem; the UN’s Group of 77 (G77) developing nations invited Palestine to chair the group’s meeting during 2019; Spain’s Josep Borell, who is pro-Palestinian and tough on Israel, was named the next Foreign Affairs Commissioner of the European Union; and former US President Jimmy Carter called on the United States to recognize Palestinian sovereignty. These small but significant advances on behalf of the Palestinians were achieved as a result of Palestine’s commitment to diplomacy, not the hysteria practiced by Kushner and his friends in Israel, as well as by pro-Israel embeds found throughout the Trump administration.

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