No Collusion — But the Cold War Heats Up

No Collusion — But the Cold War Heats Up

BRIAN CLOUGHLEY | 02.04.2019 | WORLD / AMERICAS

No Collusion — But the Cold War Heats Up

Donald Trump is a narcissistic boor who tells lies with a casual indifference that might be regarded with amusement or even admiration were he not a malevolent poseur with all the style and attraction of a sock full of wet spaghetti. He is a dangerous buffoon whose views and actions on international affairs are confused and erratic.

BUT — for once he has been proved to have been right, because he told the truth when he stoutly denied he had colluded with sinister Russians to ensure he would win the presidential election in 2016. A two-year inquiry was conducted by Special Counsel Robert Mueller at a cost of 25 million dollars for the first eighteen months and on 24 March the New York Times reported that the four page summary of his findings provided by Attorney General William Barr showed “Mr Mueller and his team were unable to establish that anyone connected to the Trump campaign conspired or coordinated with the Russian government” in the course of the 2016 elections.

The Times noted that Mr Mueller “is as careful and thorough an investigator as there is. His investigation lasted almost two years, issued more than 2,800 subpoenas and roughly 500 search warrants and heard from a similar number of witnesses. If he couldn’t find any links, it’s doubtful anyone could.”

But the paper couldn’t avoid highlighting the totally unproved allegation that Russia had “interfered to help Mr. Trump in the 2016 presidential campaign” although the grudging admission that there was no collusion was a step in the right direction.

What was expected by those of us ingenuous to imagine there might be honour in the mainstream media was that those responsible for feeding the fires of hatred over the years, and those who stated explicitly, for example, that there was “plenty of evidence of collusion or conspiracy in plain sight” should stand up and say, quite clearly, “Sorry. We were wrong.” I also believe in the tooth fairy and the Easter Bunny.

This “plain sight” allegation was by Congressman Adam Schiff, reported in August 2018. He is Chair of the Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence of the House of Representatives and repeatedly said that his committee had uncovered “plenty of evidence of collusion or conspiracy.” He told ‘Meet the Press’ two years ago that “I can’t go into the particulars, but there is more than circumstantial evidence now” and in an ABC interview declared that the collusion conspiracy was of “a size and scope probably beyond Watergate.” He was retailing deceptive garbage, but there are plenty more like him, and their rabble-rousing declarations were devotedly recorded without question by most of the media.

The Washington Post now greatly regrets “the toxic tribalism that’s been tearing apart the country’s civic culture” but it was the Post and all the rest of the mainstream media that encouraged tribalism, factionalism, distrust and hatred — exactly as so many of the extremist promoters of Brexit have done in the now totally disUnited Kingdom, which is about to plunge to economic and social disaster. But the Post, a major Russia-baiter, must be given credit for publishing an article on 28 March by Marc Thiessen, saying among other things that there are “a lot of people in Washington with a lot of explaining to do.” That said, it is unlikely that many of us will hold any breath waiting for explanation of their campaign of spiteful malevolence.

Freddy Gray of the US Spectator noted that on 25 March, just before release of the Mueller findings, 2020 presidential candidate Beto O’Rourke said “You have a president who, in my opinion, beyond a shadow of a doubt, sought to, however ham-handedly, collude with the Russian government.” But he won’t be held to account. It is highly unlikely that one single intending voter for O’Rourke will have a opinion-alteration simply because the candidate made an utter fool of himself and deliberately misled the American people.

Former CIA Director John Brennan, a media favourite during the happy collusion years, declared Trump to be “wholly in the pocket of Putin” and wrote that “Trump’s claims of no collusion are, in a word, hogwash.”

It’s reminiscent of the horrible days of the unlamented alcoholic Senator Joseph McCarthy who in the 1950s destroyed the lives of so many innocent people because he wanted to achieve political prominence. In a speech he announced categorically that “I have here in my hand a list of 205 [members of the State Department] that were known to the Secretary of State as being members of the Communist Party and who nevertheless are still working and shaping the policy of the State Department.” In later pronouncements he gave different numbers and generally contradicted himself — but it didn’t matter. As with the Trump-Russia “collusion” allegations, those who wanted to believe there were thousands of sinister conspiring communists in the State Department, and Hollywood and Voice of America Radio, as stated clearly by McCarthy, simply carried on believing everything McCarthy said, even to this day.

They are in similar company, because there are millions of people out there who refuse to be convinced that there was no collusion, no matter what evidence is produced to refute their mistaken conviction.

Not only this, but the Cold War campaign against Russia is heating up, with the media trying very hard to deflect attention from their embarrassment about being totally wrong. The New York Times, for example, came up with the devious tactic of attack by means of an anti-Russia major article on 31 March. This piece announced with horror that “Russia’s Military Mission Creep Advances to a New Front: Africa.” In shocked tones it revealed that “Russia, entrenched in Africa during the Cold War’s violent East-West rivalry, largely retreated from the continent after the collapse of the Soviet Union. But in the past two years, Moscow has rekindled relations with Soviet-era clients like Mozambique and Angola, and forged new ties with other countries. President Vladimir Putin of Russia will host a summit meeting between Moscow and African countries later this year.”

The Times had the effrontery to claim that the Pentagon “has a relatively light footprint across Africa” — with 6000 troops and a thousand military mercenaries (‘contractors’ in Newspeak) in the continent — but failed to state, as Nick Turse notes, that “a recent investigation by the Intercept, based on documents obtained from US Africa Command (AFRICOM) via the Freedom of Information Act, revealed a network of 34 bases heavily clustered in the north and west of that continent as well as in the Horn of Africa. AFRICOM’s ‘strategic posture’ consists of larger ‘enduring’ outposts, including two forward operating sites, 12 cooperative security locations, and 20 more austere sites known as contingency locations.”

In other words, Washington’s Defence-Industrial Complex has spread its military tentacles well and truly (and potentially disastrously) over Africa, but the mainstream media, and especially the New York Times, prefer to highlight the Russia’s modest but effective cooperation with African countries in an effort to further demonise Moscow, while drawing readers away from the important but increasingly downplayed revelation that THERE WAS NO COLLUSION.

One of the more preposterous reactions to the Mueller findings was that of the Post’s media columnist, Martha Sullivan, who made an attempt to help reporters and commentators out of the disgusting mess they helped to create by writing a piece titled “Serious journalists should be proud of — not bullied over — their Russia reporting.” Once readers of that ludicrous headline stopped laughing they were regaled with the argument that the hacks “drove forward a national conversation that needed to happen. As Americans saw with their own eyes Trump’s bizarre efforts to ingratiate himself with Russian President Vladimir Putin, that reporting mattered and provided context.” Sure. Even if the reporting was utter and complete baloney.

The defences are up, while the excuses are being trotted out and counter-attacks are gaining momentum. It’s just like old times, when the Cold War was thriving. And Washington’s powerful anti-Russia lobby is delighted that Cold War Two is heating up.

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.Trump Finds Re-Election Slogan – ‘Evil Socialism’

Trump Finds Re-Election Slogan – ‘Evil Socialism’

FINIAN CUNNINGHAM | 15.02.2019 | WORLD / AMERICAS

Trump Finds Re-Election Slogan – ‘Evil Socialism’

The 2020 US presidential elections are well underway with at least six Democrat contenders so far throwing their hats into the ring. For his part, incumbent President Donald Trump has newly minted a cause for his re-election – saving America from creeping socialism.

During his State of the Union speech last week, Trump conspicuously warned “fellow Americans” of the putative evil of socialism. He lambasted the “socialist dictatorship” of Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro, then fatuously and falsely leveled all the economic misery of the South American country on the alleged failings of socialism. As if years of US economic sanctions against the country and recent confiscation of oil assets have nothing to do with Venezuela’s turmoil.

In the next lines of his annual nationwide address, Trump then linked US political opponents with Venezuela’s socialist President Maduro, retorting: “And some people want to bring socialism to the United States!”

The logic is revealing. First, that the president should even mention socialism in this Union address in such a pointed way shows that there is a foreboding concern among the American oligarchy – of which supposed “maverick” Trump is a consummate insider – that there is a surging interest in working class rights, propelled by a popular disdain towards capitalism and a growing affinity with socialism.

Secondly, the pejorative bracketing of political opponents in the US with the “Maduro regime” in Venezuela is a tried-and-trusted method of political smearing. Any would-be contender for the White House who speaks out about class issues and the systematic social failings of capitalism will be, it is calculated, denigrated as a “socialist stooge” in league with Venezuela’s Maduro.

For the 2016 election, Trump ran on the ticket of “Make America Great Again”. For the 2020 campaign, the emerging re-election slogan will be along the line of “Keep Socialism out of America”.

Trump’s erstwhile promises to salvage the “American carnage” and reinvent American greatness have transpired to be empty gimmicks of a sales conman. More than halfway into his presidency, the vast majority of ordinary working Americans are no better off, maybe even worse off. Trump’s bragging about overseeing the world’s “hottest economy” is all hot air, as detailed by American economics professor Richard Wolff. The boost in stock market indicators rather than a reinvigoration of the real productive economy is very much down to the massive tax giveaways to the super-rich and corporate executives that this real-estate-magnate-turned-president has bestowed.

The continuing deterioration in social conditions for most Americans has resulted in an increased popular hostility towards corporate capitalism, Wall Street and what more and more citizens correctly perceive as a plutocracy masquerading as “democracy”. The alienation from capitalism and the myth of the “American Dream” has resulted in a growing openness among ordinary citizens to socialism. The corruption and misery of capitalism is driving people to search for alternatives. Polls have shown majorities of US public expressing a positive identity with socialist politics. It is no longer a taboo concept. This is quite a shocking achievement in the US, where decades of government, news media and academic propaganda have tried to expunge any notion of socialism from the American mind.

A reflection of the trend is seen in the increasingly critical rhetoric among certain Democrat politicians about economic injustice. The Bernie Sanders wing of the party, which includes new wave Democrats like Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Tulsi Gabbard, have openly articulated the word “socialism” – which again is something of a dramatic development in the US after decades of McCarthyite witch-hunting and Edgar J Hoover-like demonization of socialists as “traitorous Reds”.

The latest Democrat to announce their bid for the White House is Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren. During her contender speech last weekend at a rally for Blue Collar communities, Warren spoke scathingly of “the failure of the American system”. She talked about the chasm between the oligarchic one per cent in American society and the massive poverty of the rest. It was an implicitly radical speech.

Trump is very much in that top one per cent of super-rich who have siphoned off America’s wealth during decades of neoliberal capitalism, overseen by both Republican and Democrat administrations belonging to the two parties of Big Business.

There is, however, an awareness among the more leftwing side of the Democrats that the party has to break from its sponsorship links to Big Business and Wall Street – as epitomized by Hillary Clinton in the 2016 race – if it is to win the White House in 2020.

Trump should be an easy target for a genuine contender who can expose his empty conman talk about caring for “American workers”. Trump’s blatantly pro-rich tax banditry would also be a field day for a socialist candidate to make huge political hay. So too would his continuation of American imperialist warmongering, as most clearly manifested in the Trump administration’s outrageous interference in Venezuela’s democracy.

Donald J Trump, the big-mouth realtor, knows that he is vulnerable to a genuine political offensive from the left. There is a groundswell of opposition to “the system” among ordinary citizens – if it can harnessed by a confident socialist candidate. That would explain why Trump has lately “discovered” the threat of socialism to “our great country”.

The trouble is that it is doubtful if such a counter-candidate exists in the present US political landscape. In Elizabeth Warren’s rally at the weekend, she seemed to studiously avoid using the words “capitalism” or “socialism”. Her rival Democrat candidate, New York congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, reportedly distanced herself in media interviews from being identified as a socialist following Trump’s Red-baiting State of the Union speech last week.

Over the next year in the run-up to the 2020 presidential election, we can expect more such withering attempts by Trump and the establishment political class to find common cause in denigrating any opponent who sounds too much like a socialist, even if that opponent doesn’t actually use the word themselves.

The irony is rich, or maybe that should be super-rich. Trump has complained about opponents in Washington and the corporate media for waging a witch-hunt against him over his alleged links to Russia. Yet this oligarchic conman has no scruples or hesitation in using witch-hunt tactics to defile opponents who are labelled as “evil socialists”.

This desperate maneuver by Trump to use socialism as a bogeyman is unwittingly a signal that America’s plutocracy does actually view the resurgence in class politics and socialism as a real threat to its privileged siphoning off of wealth under capitalism.

Can American voters find a candidate who courageously takes up their cause? That is the kind of breakthrough that America and the rest of world needs.

Nazi Racialist Ideology in Service to Trump Derangement Syndrome

February 14, 2019

by Norman Ball for The Saker Blog

 

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A full year ago, as it was dawning on most reasonable people the Trump-Russian Collusion narrative was a hoax drenched in donkey-fied Goebbelian misdirection, I noted with alarm (here on The Saker Blog) how Never Trumpism, in its manic excesses, was retracing a very dark chapter of Nazi racialist ideology.

 

goebbels on ww1

In a disturbing instance of enantiadromia, this very same faction was accusing half the nation (not themselves of course —the Other shadow-half) of harboring neo-Nazi fixations of their own towards Donald Trump. Millions of Americans’ watched their populist effusions get transmuted by the opposition into a Wolf Blitzkrieg-narrated version of Triumph of the Will.

Of course much can be said about Trump’s subsequent drift into the same old Neocon orbit. But without doubt, the early hostile reception attending his Russian overtures did little to encourage a pivot towards improved relations between the two countries. Still, one cannot help but wonder how things might have turned out absent sui generis ethno-racial antagonisms. The original McCarthyism was salutary for destroying lives solely on the basis of ideology. In the present climate, decent men and women rise in salute of Tail-Gunner Joe’s scrupulous avoidance of DNA samples.

teenage virusHere’s an extended excerpt of the March 2018 Saker essay:

“The term Russian collusion sounds like it walked off a Tavistock Institute clipboard with the usual aim of promoting fear and avoiding mass enlightenment. Knowledge is power. Enlightenment is the coveted reserve of the Few. Not surprisingly, power favors misdirection (ignorance) over enlightenment (empowerment). Dumb down and frighten — divide and conquer.

This is why the plebeian class is often referred to as the disorganized masses. Buffeted by successive waves of misdirection, society becomes a de-articulated echo chamber of movements, ideologies and belief systems. Horizontalized incoherence averts vertical assaults on those who preside on high. The Internet alt-narrative, a bottoms-up constellation of knowledge simultaneously disseminated and protected by its distributive architecture, is climbing the enlightenment ladder slowly. It needs to hurry.

We find an early Russophobic send-up in the zany 1966 movie The Russians Are Coming! The Russians Are Coming! Trying desperately to stay under the radar of state actors (with their penchant for international incidents and Independent Counsels) a Soviet sub and its crew, having run aground on a Cape Cod sandbar, enlist the support of sympathetic Cape Cod villagers to regain open waters. Their Russian nationality is initially hidden (isn’t it always?) behind the guise of Norwegian fishermen. Everyone has the presence of mind not to call CNN. The movie instructs that, when encountered in everyday interactions, Russians are people too. Imagine that! This humanizing touch was a real coup in Cold War America.

The visceral and reflexive fear of a prior era is being resurrected. But as prelude to what? More on that later.

Russian collusion is also calculated to stoke primate fears. In essence, the colluders have acquired an infection from the main doctrinal source; Russia being a sort of Typhoid Mary. The resultant false doctrine (revived nationalism, multilateralism, Eurasianism, post-Bolshevism, Christian renewal) has the potential to visit a cognitive plague on the larger group, or should we rather say their doctrine poses a health threat to the prevailing narrative, the latter being an illness in itself that seeks the preservation of the Few at the cost of the Many.

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So, a pervading illness erects the strawman of a secondary ailment in order to defend the primacy of its own pathology. Never mind that, for Americans, this secondary ailment is exactly what the doctor ordered. The truth is disguised as a disease. The emanation point is Russia.

Keeping the masses both joined to a common moral cause (the Straussian baton of Greatest Present Evil has clearly passed from Terror to Russia) and trained on their potent enemy (for what appears to be an imminent conflict), our Managers find the prospect of We the People—in our militarized permutation—inflicting a deathblow on Russia, while getting annihilated ourselves, a very tempting two-for-one proposition.

For the moment, until a cure is found (or a war is started in earnest) we are urged to please wash our hands thoroughly after handling all things Russian. Russian flags on Olympic grounds could spark an outbreak. Ban them. If you encountered a Russian-sponsored ad on Facebook during the election be aware the contagion may have survived on your PC screen for weeks, causing some to waste their vote even on the likes of Jill Stein. Now that’s sick! The political valence of the click ads–Trump or Clinton—didn’t matter either. Germs are agnostic and airborne. They can travel for miles disguised as competing worldviews.

Sometimes the drumbeat can carry us into the most surreal byways. Take the positively eerie instance of a CNN correspondent venturing onto an elderly pro-Trump Floridian’s front lawn to question her patriotism and Russian sympathies.Throwing caution to the wind, he fails to don the official CNN gloves and surgical mask. What is he in this instance: a journalist, a stalker, an ideological ambulance-chaser, a proto-Soviet Precinct Captain?

More linguistic mischief. We encounter the nefarious The dozens of times a week as in The Russians. Deployment of the definite article as preface to an ethnic group, people or tribe is another tactic aimed at suggesting members of a particular group can no longer be referenced as autonomous individuals, having become hive-minded Stepford Wives lashed to an agenda injurious to the larger group. The The’s are behind the recent ramp-up of crime! No sooner do the The’s move into the neighborhood than property values take a dive. The The’s control the world!

The perils of ethnic scapegoating are a matter of historical inspection. Why then are they being so systematically courted? The indignation of our nation’s 2.9 million Russian-Americans is entirely too muted, certainly under-televised. Perhaps Wolf Blitzkrieg can look into this.

In a recent tweet, Hillary Clinton stoops yet again to Russia-baiting. Then there’s the thirteen Facebook trolls who happen to be Russian nationals engaged in a strictly business venture with no evidence of a state actor role and no overt political leanings. None of this prevents Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein from alluding by sly inference to the Russians during his press conference (here at 3:19) as though King Bee Putin himself was supplying the company with kitty and puppy clickbait pics from the depths of the Kremlin’s basement.

How does national origin warrant even a cursory mention unless a larger point is being made? The indicted will never see a court of law anyway. The slur was the thing. It was lodged. Mission accomplished.”

*****

Today, as the Trump-Russia Collusion hoax collapses in an exhausted heap, hopelessly discredited by the anticipated broadly bipartisan Senate Intelligence Committee report as well as the recent (and quite riveting) ABC News interview of former Trump (and long-time DOJ) attorney John Dowd, we can only look back in horror and beg the forgiveness of our Russian-American friends who, it seems even now, continue to weather an Anti-Slavism onslaught surpassed only in intensity by Nazi Germany itself.

So, what exactly is Anti-Slavism or Slavophobia? The insert below offers both definition and harrowing genealogy.

antislavism

For a televised rendition of manufactured Anti-slavic consent, The Jimmy Dore Show recently captured a Rachel Maddow installment in all its monomaniacal splendor. Captain Ahab would drop his harpoon in a fit of obsessive-compulsive inadequacy beside Maddow’s unmodulated intensity. Remember, this is culled from just one show. The mash-up mayhem begins here at 0:15. For those with bad earbuds, relax. The audio never strays far from Russia-Russia-Russia-Russia-Russia:

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Did media luminaries travel the globe systematically exploring and discarding potential instances of, say, Finnish and Indonesian collusion before stumbling across—and belaboring mightily—the Russian brand? Nyet. It was Russia Russia Russia from the get-go.

It’s high time Neo-Nazi revivalists such as Maddow either provide evidence of Slavic genome deficiencies and incontrovertible Untermenschen status or cease, desist and apologize profusely to this large and significant segment of American society.

If such evidence does exist, then all that remains is to determine as a society how this beleaguered genome in our midst can best be addressed from a public policy standpoint. Better to ask Maddow, but ideas include sequestering all Russians in Idaho, affording them spotty civil liberty protections or pursuing barbed-wire internment (ala Americans of Japanese descent in WW2), etc.

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From a purely American standpoint, the opportunity cost implicit in this unwarranted (and perilous) derailment of a Trump-telegraphed US-Russian rapprochement has been nothing short of ruinous for a reprised Kissinger-esque triangulation strategy, while wildly beneficial to accelerated Eurasian integration.

The double-helix China-Russia alliance (postulated in 2014 by Saker blog frequenter Larchmonter445) has been allowed two further years of unanswered fermentation, increasing the likelihood the US will face a two-front world war —something the Pentagon itself has recently conceded.

Thus, what may have started as a Hillary-Clinton-in-defeat face-saving campaign (if not an outright Obama-initiated GCHQ/Five Eyes coup) could well reap the bitterest fruit of all: a world-ending conflagration. It’s enough to want Heil Hillster back.

Not really.

Mass Psychosis and The Church of Humanitarian Interventionism

Mass Psychosis and The Church of Humanitarian Interventionism

January 03, 2019

by David Penner for The Saker Blog

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

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

There’s a Hitler on The Danube

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

“Save Benghazi” and More Humanitarian Psychosis

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Syria: Mass Murder in Paradise

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

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

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

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

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

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

Forgotten Killing Fields: Afghanistan and Ukraine

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

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

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

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

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

A Hitler on The Moskva River?

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

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

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

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

Dershowitz employs new and comical tactic.

DateFriday, February 24, 2012 at 4:43PM AuthorGilad Atzmon

By Nicholas Urie

http://www.nicholasurie.com

(Reminder: I’m commenting on this not a a member of the Friends family, but as someone who arranged the music for the concert, which was awesome. I am really proud of the band’s excellent hard work, Gilad’s wonderful playing, and the audience, who made the show feel electric. You can see the concert footage here: http://www.nicholasurie.com/news/?p=693)
I have to comment on Alan Dershowitz’s new epic from today’s Jerusalem Post, Friends Seminary plays bait, switch on anti-Semitism. In the article, Dershowitz continues his campaign of bullying and misinformation reaching new and even more spectacular heights. In my last two responses to the Friends-Dershowitz saga,Alan Dershowitz, neo-McCarthyite,” and, Wall St. Journal Ignores Dershowitz’s History of Attacks in, “School Hits Sour Note.” I laid out some of the tactics employed by Mr. Dershowitz in his effort to smear Friends Seminary and its faculty, staff, students and parents.

Mr. Dershowitz has taken his McCarthyist shenanigans to a new level, with the manufacturing of “evidence” from whole cloth in an effort to add pressure to a situation that was clearly winding down. Until this point, his tactic had been simply to distort things so heavily that they were almost unrecognizable to anyone actually involved. By knocking the corners off of what was real, he was able to stir a tremendous amount controversy, knowing that people are often gullible to the brand of manipulation that mixes falsehoods with truth. As Mr. Dershowitz has discovered, these tactics will only take you so far. People start to see through manipulations of this kind, as Bo Lauder, the Principal of Friends Seminary has done, evidenced by his rescinding Mr. Dershowitz’s invitation to the school.
A grand untruth is what is needed now, to take this tar and feather show to the next level, and that is what Mr. Dershowitz has delivered. This new article is a masterstroke in his quest to shame Friends Seminary and strike fear in the minds of any institution that may openly disobey him in the future.
We should focus on one particularly egregious falsity; Mr. Dershowitz’s claim that, “The Friends Seminary in New York has a rabidly anti-Israel history teacher on its faculty, who propagandizes his students against Israel in the classroom.” This statement is patently false and meant only to embroil his readers. I recently sat down to lunch with the teacher in question, and I can attest that he is as measured and intellectually honest as one could hope for in a teacher of history. Our discussion over lunch was wide ranging and gave me no reason to suspect that Mr. Dershowitz’s claim is anything but a convenient fiction. (The history teacher is also Jewish, if that matters to anyone reading – though I think it is irrelevant in this discussion).

The inditement of the history teacher is a perfect example of the evolution of Mr. Dershowitz’s rhetoric. The idea to create a grand lie is nothing new, and a modern source of inspiration for this particular rhetorical device can be found in what can only be described as a comical place, Mein Kampf. The Hitlerian, “big lie.”

“…in the big lie there is always a certain force of credibility; because the broad masses of a nation are always more easily corrupted in the deeper strata of their emotional nature than consciously or voluntarily; and thus in the primitive simplicity of their minds they more readily fall victims to the big lie than the small lie, since they themselves often tell small lies in little matters but would be ashamed to resort to large-scale falsehoods. It would never come into their heads to fabricate colossal untruths, and they would not believe that others could have the impudence to distort the truth so infamously. Even though the facts which prove this to be so may be brought clearly to their minds, they will still doubt and waver and will continue to think that there may be some other explanation. For the grossly impudent lie always leaves traces behind it, even after it has been nailed down, a fact which is known to all expert liars in this world and to all who conspire together in the art of lying.” Adolf Hitler, Mein Kampf, volume 1, ch. 10

The psychological profile of someone who employs this Hitlerian tactic was perfectly described by the OSS during the Second World War, and can be applied to Mr. Dershowitz and his plan of attack on not just Friends, but all of his philosophical/political rivals. The OSS wrote of Hitler that,

“His primary rules were: never allow the public to cool off; never admit a fault or wrong; never concede that there may be some good in your enemy; never leave room for alternatives; never accept blame; concentrate on one enemy at a time and blame him for everything that goes wrong; people will believe a big lie sooner than a little one; and if you repeat it frequently enough people will sooner or later believe it.” OSS report, p.51

Can we not all see how this device is being used against the Friends Seminary community? It is transparent to the point of absurdity, and I think it is time that supporters of Mr. Dershowitz take a moment to reflect on what is actually going on, and parse out what this campaign is actually trying to accomplish.

I for one have had enough of this, and I hope that everyone who reads Mr. Dershowitz’s garbage has too. I applaud Friends for finally making the decision to ignore Mr. Dershowitz, and hopefully the school continues to do so, taking a large step toward sanity and the teaching of responsible rhetoric to the students in their charge.


The wandering who- Gilad Atzmon
River to Sea Uprooted Palestinian  
The views expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of this Blog!

The Destructive Madness of Extremism: First McCarthyism, Then Radical Zionism



Related: We will not let you down Khader Adnan! ~ Photos & Action Alert
Related: All Posts about Khader Adnan

Time to choose up sides, folks: Are you with us or against us?

(CHICAGO) – The right-wing government leaders of the state of Israel, bolstered by their powerful US allies, are trembling with excitement at the prospect of a military attack against Iran.

Everything is in place for Iraq Redux. This time the Extremists are determined to get it right. No ground troops, just highly sophisticated bombing runs that will target nuclear targets in Iran.

The American public is being manipulated by Israel’s Zionist extremists to believe that Iran is on the verge of developing nuclear arms which will be able to “wipe Israel off the map”.

Time to choose up sides, folks: Are you with us or against us?

Republican candidates for president, congressional Republicans and conservative Democrats, with the active encouragement of the always predictable Israel Lobby, are all spoiling for a fight for “our side”.

Truth of the matter, as Paul Pillar reported in the website , The National Interest, Israel has already launched its war with Iran through stealth assassinations of Iranian scientists, who may have, or more likely, did not have, a part in developing nuclear military capability. Pillar’s source is a report by Richard Engel and Robert Windrem, developed for NBC news:

Although the assassinations of Iranian scientists have until now been followed by no indication of responsibility other than smug comments of satisfaction from officials of the most likely foreign state perpetrator, now NBC offers something more specific.

According to a report by Richard Engel and Robert Windrem, the assassinations have been the joint work of Israel and the Iranian cult-cum-terrorist group Mujahedin-e Khalq.
According to the report, the partnership has involved Israel providing financing, training and arms to the MEK to accomplish the hits, as well as to commit other acts of violent sabotage inside Iran. The story tracks with accusations from officials of the Iranian government, who say they base most of what they know on interrogations and captured materials from a failed assassination attempt in 2010.
Such accusations by themselves would be easy to dismiss, of course, as more of the regime’s propaganda. But the NBC story cites two senior U.S. officials, speaking anonymously, as confirming the story. A third official said “it hasn’t been clearly confirmed yet,” although like the others he denied any U.S. involvement. The Israeli foreign ministry declined comment; the MEK denied the story.
No one is fooled by the Israeli denials. In fact, as the NBC report suggests, Israel deflects attention away from its involvement in all things nefarious, by suggesting that Iran is the aggressor here with its “attacks” on Israeli diplomats, a case dutifully made by the Washington Post here and here.

Juan Cole, a Middle East scholar, writing on his Informed Comment blog, is not persuaded by the Israeli spin. He finds Indian sources more credible than Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman:

American media that just parrot notorious thug, Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman in [these] unlikely allegation are allowing themselves to be used for propaganda. Why not interview Indian authorities on this matter? They are on the ground and have excellent forensic (“CSI”) abilities. Stop being so lazy and blinkered; that isn’t journalism.

Deflect attention from reality, create fear, and take the “high road”. This is the way extremists operate. It has always been so. We need only to travel back to the post WWII days of the 1940s and 1950s, when the US public was transfixed by a Washington drama that pitted suspected Communists against the American Way of Life.

The drama was launched in 1947 Congressional hearings.

Looking back to those days,the extremist side of that conflict became known in 1950 as McCarthyism, after Wisconsin Senator Joe McCarthy, a Republican who served in the US Senate from 1947 until 1957. He became a media star because he was horribly simplistic as he peddled fear. Finally, the Senator overreached and ran afoul of an honest judge named Joseph Welch. After that he spiraled downward.

But for a time it was the McCarthy era, where the sides were clearly defined, no room for ambiguity. The times demanded good versus evil, darkness against light, the powerful against the weak. This 4 minute film clip below, from the 1947 hearings, shows both “friendly” and “unfriendly” witnesses. One of the friendly witnesses was an actor named Ronald Reagan, who later became President of the United States.
Those with the power of the Law behind them asked the question: “Are you now or have you ever been, a member of the Communist Party”? It was a question which, with the wrong answer, could send a person to jail.

Ten of those who testified as “unfriendly” witnesses, became known as the “Hollywood Ten.” Because they originally refused to cooperate with House UnAmerican Activities Committee (HUAC) they were cited for contempt of congress.

They were subsequently fired and blacklisted by the Motion Picture Association of America. All ten served up to a year in prison, were fined $1,000 and faced great difficulty working in Hollywood again.

Some worked under assumed names. The blacklist was finally broken in 1960 when Dalton Trumbo, an unrepentant member of the Hollywood Ten, was publicly acknowledged as the screenwriter of the films Spartacus and Exodus. (Could Trumbo have anticipated that the Israel he celebrated in his script for Exodus, would one day be asking “Are you now, or have you ever been”?)

The oppression of the Hollywood Ten operated on a McCarthyite battle of simplistic good versus evil. The battle is repeated whenever extremists hold absolute power, or think they do. Give the “wrong” answer and you are doomed to an indefinite time of incarceration, or at the very least, a permanent banishment from polite society.

Fast forward to the Palestine of 2011-12, where a dying young Palestinian man lies chained to a hospital bed in Israel’s Ofer Prison in Palestine. In an earlier Wall Writings posting, I examined what happened to bring this young man into the Israeli military prison.

After he was seized on December 17, 2011, Kahder Adnan was asked the contemporary variation of the 1940s’ Communist question, under torture in an Israeli jail nine weeks ago this weekend.

Adnan was asleep with his family when he taken by the Israeli Occupation Forces from his home near Jenin, in Area A, that part of the Palestinian Occupied Terrorities which the Oslo Accords mandated “the Palestinian Authority has sole civil jurisdiction and security control, while Israel retains authority over movement in and out of the area”.

The questions put to the 33-year old baker and Bir Zeit University graduate, are probably not recorded. Israeli officials have made no effort to be specific as to why Adnan had been placed in “administrative detention”, the bland terminology used by Israel for “disappearing” a Palestinian into the darkness of the absolute control of its military prison system.

Israeli occupation forces subsequently have let their friends in the media know that the question put to Adnan was a variation of the old 1940s American “Are you now or have you ever been a member of the Communist Party”. I am reasonably certain no one asking that question had ever heard of Joe McCarthy.

For Khader Adnan, the question was more along the lines of, “Are you now, or have you ever been a member of Islamic Jihad”?

From the McCarthy era to the time of Israel’s military occupation, the questions resonate through the decades. We, the all powerful, the all good, demand that you confess that you belong to a “party” that is evil. How does the public know that the Islamic Jihad is evil? Because the “only democracy in the Middle East”, declares it to be so.

Communism in the 1940s and 1950s did bad things; the 2012 Islamic Jihad is fighting military occupation by the means it has, none of which are attractive. Extremism from the top of the power pyramid, engenders extremism from below.

In Israel, and indeed, in the United States, where the definition of evil is dictated by Israel, Islamic Jihad is an “illegal terrorist organization”. But is Khader Adnan a “member” of Islamic Jihad? He might have answered with a biblical statement, “you say I am”. Or maybe he simply remained quiet, waiting to be charged with membership is an illegal organization, a charge that is yet to come.

Khader Adnan is no stranger to an Israeli jail cell. He has already spent six years in one. He had, however, been a free man until nine weeks ago when he was once again hauled away into “administrative detention”, a colonial means of control the British, the original colonial power, bequeathed to Israel, the current colonial power.

Israel has put in jail more than 40% of the male Palestinian population, at one point in their lives. The purpose is to subdue the population. Sometimes they sit for years in administrative detention. At other times, they serve prison terms, and then reenter society under the watchful eyes of Israeli soldiers and informers.

Khader Adnan responded the only way left to a prisoner whose future rests entirely in the hands of his jailers; he began a hunger strike that could lead to his death. In spite of numerous calls from Israeli and Palestinian organizations that Adnan be charged or released, the state of Israel remains silent, watching a man dying in one of its military prisons.

Most Americans are ignorant of Adnan’s impending death. If, or when, he dies, the American media may record his death as a small news item that will almost certainly, identify him as a leader of the “radical terrorist Islamic Jihad group”, a charge never leveled against Adnan except by implication.

And most Americans will not see that yet another Palestinian has died because the powerful are in control with the power to ask the question: “Are you now or have you ever been”, a member of whatever group that is not approved by the rulers.

Variations of the McCarthy Era question will continue as a part of our national discourse. It crops up even within the American Jewish community, as it did in a strange bit of inter-tribal conflict reported this week by Adam Horowitz on his blog, Mondoweiss.

Someone has said that great minds run together. I don’t know about that, but I say to you that by all things sacred, earlier in the week I was working on this post which links the McCarthy Era to Zionism.

I had even searched for, and found, the short congressional grilling of the Hollywood Ten, including Dalton Trumbo, above. Suddenly, there was Horowitz beating me into on line with the McCarthy connection. The least I can do is permit him to give the background of the story.

It all started when the New York Times transferred Ethan Bronner, its long-time Jerusalem bureau chief, back to the US. The irony of this personnel shift lies in the fact that Bronner finally may have become too much of a Zionist for even his editors to tolerate. For his part, Bronner says he had requested the transfer.

Bronner had been criticized by peace activists for his softness in covering the Occupation, soft that is, as in not being critical enough of the Israeli IDF tactics. When the story broke that his son had, until last year, served in the Israeli Defense Forces, even the Times‘ Public Editor suggested it was time for a transfer.

Jodi Rudoren, the new Jerusalem bureau chief is, like Bronner, Jewish. But her ethnicity was not enough to satisfy some on the Zionist team. Acting as a journalist should, she had reached out to sources on both sides of the issue in Israel/Palestine. Talking to the “enemy” immediately triggered a radical Zionist reaction.

Adam Horowitz on Mondoweiss, tells what happened next, writing under the headline: “Right wing to Rudoren: Are you now, or have you ever been, a Zionist?”

Judi Rudoren continues to hold her ground against the right-wing onslaught against her for tweeting Mondoweiss and Ali Abunimah, as well as recommending Peter Beinart’s new book (these are really the charges?). The Washington Free Beacon’s Adam Kredo interviews her and begins in the most (appropriately) McCarthyite way possible:

The New York Times’ incoming Jerusalem bureau chief, Jodi Rudoren, won’t say if she is a Zionist.
“I’m going to punt on that question,” Rudoren, who is Jewish, told the Washington Free Beacon in an interview yesterday. “I’m not really interested in labels about who I am and what I think.”
He later presses her on the fact that she retweeted a mention from Sami Kishawiof the “Love Under Apartheid” campaign.
On the issue of her journalistic objectivity, Rudoren said her tweets do not reveal an innate bias against Israel.
Asked if she considers Israel an apartheid state—as critics of the Jewish state so often do—Rudoren declined comment.
“I don’t have an assessment yet,” she said. “I’m not sure I’ll ever answer that question in the way you’ve just framed it.”
Adam Horowitz and his Mondoweiss site, along with Richard Silverstein’s Tikun Olan blog, have been two of the very few US-based web sites or publications, to provide a day by day account of the Khader Adnan ordeal as he lies chained to an Israeli military bed near Ramallah.

Whether the unjust administrative detention of Khader Adnan ends in his last minute release or in his death by self-starvation, Adnan will have registered his protest against the injustice and humiliation of Israel’s military Occupation, and in his case, especially, its administration detention.

Somehow I have to believe that new New York Times Jerusalem bureau chief will report on the final outcome of Adnan’s protest. She should, because in a much less serious moment in her life, Rudoren has also been asked the McCarthy Era question by her inquisitors.

The drawing at the top of this posting originally appeared on the website of The Association for Human Rights in Israel. The video of the HUAC hearings is from this site.

This week’s Wall Writings posting is being released a few days earlier than usual because I wanted to add my voice to those around the world who have demanded that Israel release Khader Adnan before he dies in an Israeli military prison, where he was incarcerated without any charges made against him.
 
In case you missed it
 

River to Sea Uprooted Palestinian  
The views expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of this Blog!

THE GHOST OF JOE MCCARTHY WALKS THE LAND – AN ANALYSIS BY DR. LAWRENCE DAVIDSON

11. Apr, 2011


Part I – On Just What Haunts Us

In Charles Dickens’s 1848 story, A Christmas Carol, the ghost of Jacob Marley roams the earth weighted down by chains symbolizing the wrongs he committed in life. He appears to Ebenezer Scrooge, his still living former business partner, to warn him that he must mend his ways: he must transform his greed into generosity and his disdain for the poor into the practice of community responsibility. He must do so or suffer eternal damnation.

In our own time, in our own story, the ghost of Marley has been replaced by that of Joe McCarthy. McCarthy’s ghost roams America at will and is particularly hyperactive in his former home state of Wisconsin. But his influence is not felt in the same manner as was Marley’s spirit. Our contemporary apparition seeks not to warn and save others but to replicate itself, to regain substance through the corruption of others, such as Scott Walker, the governor of Wisconsin and the thoroughly suspect Waukesha Wisconsin County Clerk Kathy Nickolaus. These latter day McCarthys, and those allied to them, seek to destroy the rights of working people and are not above stealing elections to do so.

Part II – The Fear of Free Speech

To these sins we can add others, specifically attacks on free speech and academic freedom. In the last couple of weeks the rightists who control the Wisconsin state legislature, possessed by the spirit of Joe McCarthy, have misused the Freedom of Information Act to demand the University of Wisconsin e-mails of Professor William Cronon. It seems that Professor Cronon, who is to be the next president of the American Historical Association, has been publically critical of Governor Walker and his policies, and that is enough to warrant this abusive attention. The same tactic has now been put into play in Michigan. In that case, having to do with the academics at the Wayne State University Labor Studies Department, the university reacted by shutting down part of the department’s web site. These attacks go along with the financial starvation of public universities and colleges across the country by the same right-wing ideological forces now embedded in our state legislatures.

The aim of all this activity against universities and their faculty is intimidation. The intimidation of those who are, or may be led to, actively oppose the right-wing ideologues our fellow citizens have been foolish enough to place in positions of power. As Juan Cole has pointed out, “free speech in the US is rare.” Employees in the private sector can lose their jobs for saying things that their employees take issue with. Now, despite tenure (also under attack) the same threat hovers over the heads of academics employed by public institutions. For instance, what the right-wingers are looking for in the case of Wayne State is the particulars of any discussion by labor specialists that might promote ideas and criticism of which they disapprove. Those possessed of the spirit of Joe McCarthy obviously prioritize their own ideology over the freedoms of others. The institutionalizing of such an attitude forms one of the underpinnings of what we commonly call tyranny.

Part III – The Indifferent Public

Behind the conservative attack on academic free speech is a broader phenomenon. The reality that most people do not partake of free speech or even appreciate its value. Think of this situation in terms of a bell curve. Those in the main bulge of the curve are people who live their lives in near total compliance with the attitudes and beliefs of their culture. They rarely if ever venture beyond those parameters and they usually are suspicious and fearful of those who violate these boundaries. That means the practice of meaningful political and cultural speech is carried on mostly by the outliers of this bell curve, both on the left and the right.

However, what happened during the Cold War and after is that, through the process of historical distortion and propaganda, the entire curve was shifted to the right. So now centrists can be labeled as liberals and liberals can be called socialists, etc.

This dangerous situation is possible because, for all the talk of globalization, the average citizen has little accurate knowledge of different political and economic systems or awareness of other ways of life. They haven’t got the experience that would allow them to accurately define the range of political positions they are dealing with. That means they can be manipulated by those who control their information environments. Those who are in control of these environments: the owners of the media in all its forms, the politicians and pseudo-expert “talking heads,” are themselves prisoners of their class determined or ethnically ingrained outlooks.

Part IV – Where are the Moderate Conservatives?

All of this leaves us with the following situation:

1. There are now empowered office holders who are out to suppress progressives of all persuasions, be they labor unionists, academic activists or just ordinary liberal Democrats.
2. In the background is a general population that is passive, gullible and largely apolitical.
3. Which means one of the pillars of American freedom, that of speech, is now undergoing serious erosion.

It might sound odd to progressive ears, but an important question in regard to this situation is, where are the moderate conservatives? At least in part the fate of the nation is in their hands. These are the millions of such moderates who normally vote Republican because they think of the Republican Party as their political home. But now they are seeing their home taken over by McCarthyite specters: capitalist ideologues, know-nothings, and political cheaters who do not hesitate to act in ways that corrupts the nation’s political process. The resulting contradictions should breed a strong sense of betrayal and resentment in the minds of these people. What are the moderate conservatives going to do about this soiling of their own nest? What are their consciences telling them? It is time for them to wake up and join in the fight for the nation’s political future.
ldavidson@wcupa.edu
www.tothepointanalyses.com

Lawrence Davidson
Department of History
West Chester University
West Chester, Pa 19383
USA
Dr. Lawrence  Davidson has done extensive research and published in the areas of American perceptions of the Middle East, and Islamic Fundamentalism. His two latest publications are Islamic Fundamentalism (Greenwood Press, 1998) and America’s Palestine: Popular and Official Perceptions from Balfour to Israeli Statehood  (University Press of Florida, 2001). He has published thirteen articles on various aspects of American perceptions of the Middle East. Dr. Davidson holds a BA from Rutgers, an MA from Georgetown University and a Ph.D. in history from the University of Alberta.
 
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