Trump Cannot Improve Relations With Russia When Trump’s Government and the US Media Oppose Improved Relations

July 10, 2017

by Paul Craig Roberts

President Trump Has Been Contradicted by His Own Government, Which Has Lined Up Against Him in Favor of Hillary Clinton, the Democratic National Committee, and the Russophobic Presstitute Media that serves the military/security complex and the neoconservatives.

I am afraid that The Saker and Finian Cunningham are correct. Nothing can come of Trump’s meeting with Putin, because, as Cunningham puts it, “Trump doesn’t have freedom or real power. The real power brokers in the US will ensure that the Russophobia campaign continues, with more spurious allegations of Moscow interfering to subvert Western democracies. Trump will continue to live under a cloud of media-driven suspicions. And thus the agenda of regime change against Syria and confrontation with Russia will also continue. Trump’s personal opinions on these matters and towards Vladimir Putin are negligible—indeed dispensable by the deep powers-that-be.”

https://www.rt.com/op-edge/395782-trump-putin-meeting-media-syria/

http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/47392.htm

Cunningham points out that instead of lauding the meeting as the beginning of the process to defuse the high tensions between the two major nuclear powers, the US media denounced Trump for being civil to Putin in the meeting.

What is missing from the media in the entirety of the Western world and perhaps also in Russia is the awareness that the dangerous tensions are orchestrated not only by Hillary and the Democratic National Committee, the neoconservatives, the US military/security complex, and the presstitutes, but also by President Trump’s own appointees.

Trump’s own ambassador to the UN, Nikki Haley, and Trump’s own Secretary of State, Rex Tillerson, sound exactly like Hillary Clinton, the Democratic National Committee, the neoconservatives, the Washington Post, the New York Times, CNN and the rest of the totally discredited presstitute media that is committed to raising tensions between the US and Russia to the point of nuclear war.

On the same day that President Donald Trump said “it is time to move forward in working constructively with Russia,” and the day after he said “I had a tremendous meeting yesterday with President Putin,” the ignorant, stupid, Nikki Haley, who Trump appointed as US UN Ambassador, publicly contracted her president, forcefully stating: “we can’t trust Russia and we won’t ever trust Russia.” https://www.rt.com/usa/395814-us-trust-russia-haley/?utm_source=spotim&utm_medium=spotim_recirculation&spotim_referrer=recirculation&spot_im_comment_id=sp_6phY2k0C_395814_c_rDCXsj

The ignorant stupid Haley is still in office, a perfect demonstration of Trump’s powerlessness.

The ignorant stupid Haley has gone far beyond Obama’s crazed UN Ambassador, neocon Smantha Power in doing everything in her power to ruin the prospect of normal relations between the two major nuclear powers. Why does Nikki Haley work in favor of a confrontation between nuclear powers that would destroy all life on earth? What is wrong with Nikki Haley? Is she demented? Has she lost her mind, assuming she ever had one?

How can President Trump normalize relations with Russia when every one of his appointees wants to worsen the relations to the point of nuclear war?

How is President Trump going to improve relations with Russia when President Trump stands powerless in face of his dressing down by his UN Ambassador? Clearly, Trump is powerless, a mere cipher.

Joining Nikki Haley was Trump’s Secretary of State, Rex Tillerson. Tillerson, allegedly a friend of Russia, is also working overtime to worsen relations between the two nuclear powers by publicly contradicting the President of the United States, thereby making it clear that Trump is barely even a cipher. Tillerson, a disgrace, said that Putin’s refusal to admit that Putin elected Trump by interfering in the US election “stands as an obstacle to our ability to improve the relationship between the US and Russia and it needs to be addressed in terms of how we assure the American people that interference into our elections will not occur by Russia or anyone else.” https://www.rt.com/usa/395814-us-trust-russia-haley/?utm_source=spotim&utm_medium=spotim_recirculation&spotim_referrer=recirculation&spot_im_comment_id=sp_6phY2k0C_395814_c_rDCXsj

Trump’s incompetence is illustrated by his appointments. There is no one in “his” government that supports him. Everyone of them works to undermine him. And he sits there and Twitters.

So, what is President Putin’s belief that an understanding can now be worked out with Washington worth? Not a plugged nickel. Trump has zero authority over “his” government. He can be contradicted at will by his own appointees. The President of the United States is a joke. You can find him on Twitter, but nowhere else, not in the Oval Office making foreign or military policy. The president Twitters and thinks that that is policy.

The Trump administration was destroyed when the weak Donald Trump allowed the neoconservatives to remove his National Security Advisor, General Flynn. Trump has never recovered. “His” administration is staffed with violent Russophobes. Wars can be the only outcome.

We know two things about the alleged Russian interference in the Trump/Hillary presidential election. One is that John Brennan, Obama’s CIA director, and Comey, Obama’s FBI director, implied repeatedly that Trump was elected by Russian interference in the election, but neither the CIA nor the FBI have provided any evidence whatsoever that any such interference occurred. Indeed, months into the case, the special prosecutor, the former FBI director, can produce no evidence. The whole thing is a sham, but it is ongoing. There will be no end to it as it is designed to undermind President Trump with the people who elected him. The message is: “Trump is not for America. Trump is for Russia.”

This is astounding! The NSA has intercepts of all transmitted data. If Russia interfered in the US presidential election the evidence would be obvious and immediately available.

Despite the obvious lies told by Brennan and Comey, the New York Times, Washington Post, CNN, MSNBC and the rest of the scum, no one has been arrested and put on trial for their efforts to overthrow the elected president of the United States. This proves beyond all doubt that the President of the United States is a non-entity. A figurehead incapable of action independently of the Deep State that controls him.

If Vladimir Putin really believes from his meeting with Trump that all of the orchestrated false charges against Russia can now be removed and normal relations restored, Putin is in la-la land. Nikki Haley says that the US will NEVER trust Russia. If Putin trusts Washington, Russia will be destroyed. And the rest of the world with Russia.

TheSaker: I sure hope that I am wrong, but…

TheSaker: I sure hope that I am wrong, but…

03.07.2017

Written by TheSaker; Originally appeared at The Unz Review

The talk of the week is the upcoming meeting between Presidents Trump and Putin on the sidelines of the G20 conference this Friday.  There have been some very good articles already written on this topic, I particularly recommend Adam Garrie’s “5 obstacles Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin will have to address in their meeting” for The Duran and Israel Shamir’s “What Would Putin Tell Trump?” for The Unz Review.  It is undeniable that the fact that these two men will finally meet is an event of immense significance and importance for the future not only of US-Russian relations, but even for the future or mankind.

Or is it?

I have to be honest here and say that my expectations are pretty close to zero.  Oh sure, they will smile, probably a lot, and some minor issues, such as the seizure of the Russian diplomatic residence in the USA, will be resolved.  Probably.  There might even be some kind of positive sounding sounds about “reaffirming the Minsk Agreement” or “fighting ISIS in Syria”, but compared to long list of truly vital issues which need to be urgently discussed and resolved, this will, I am afraid, be as close to nothing as it can get.  Why do I say that?

First, we should all stop kidding ourselves, Russia and the USA do not have “disagreements”.  The sad and frightening reality is that we are now closer to war than during the Cuban Missile Crisis.  Not only are Russian and US servicemen now deployed in the same war zone (the Americans totally illegally), but unlike what happened during the Cuban Missile Crisis we have a US President who terminally lacks the willpower to deal with the crazies on the US side, I am talking about the Neocons, of course.  In fact, under Kennedy there were no real Neocons to tackle to begin with.  Now they are running the White House while Trump serves them coffee or watches TV in another room (I am jocking of course, but just barely).  In this context, to meet on the “sidelines” of a G20 conference is bordering on the criminally irresponsible.  What the world would need is for Trump and Putin to meet in a “Camp David” like format for at least 3-5 days with all their key advisors and officials.  Even if we assume a 100% of good will on both sides, meeting on the “sidelines” of an already big conference just won’t make it possible to get anything done.  In the very best of cases Lavrov and Tillerson could have done most of the hard work away from the public eye, but the truth is that the Russians say that so far the two sides have not even agreed upon an agenda.

Second, it is absolutely clear that the US Ziomedia and Congress will declare any, any, positive outcome from the meeting as “Trump caved in to Putin” and try to get a pound of political flesh out of Trump for it.  So for Trump any external success will mean an internal disaster.  And we already know that the man does not have what it takes to deal with such attacks.  Frankly, his only “tactic”, so to speak, to deal with the Neocons has been to try to appease them.  So short of Trump asking for political asylum in Russia and joining Snowden somewhere in Russia, I don’t see him ever taking any independent action.

Third, if we look at the people around Trump it is pretty clear that the only intelligent and rational person in the White House is Rex Tillerson.  The rest of them are lunatics, maniacs and imbeciles – the current US, what shall I call it, “actions” (can’t call it a “policy”) towards Syria clearly prove that the Executive Branch is completely out of control.  We now can clearly see that Mattis and McMaster are not these military geniuses presented to us by the Ziomedia but that, in fact, they are both phenomenally incompetent and that their views of the conflicts in Syria and even Afghanistan can only be characterized as totally lacking anything remotely resembling any kind of vision. Yet these two “geniuses” seem to be in charge.  For all his intelligence, Tillerson can’t even reign in this Nikki idiot at the United Nations.  We should stop kidding ourselves and stop pretending like there is anybody to talk to for the Russians.  At best, they are dealing with a Kindergarten.  At worst, they are dealing with an evil Kindergarten.  But either way, there is nobody to talk to on the US side, much less so somebody to begin solving the many issues which need solving.

I will admit that I did have high hopes for Trump and his apparent willingness to sit down and have an adult conversation with Russians.  I was especially inspired by Trump’s repeated rejection of the Ziomedia’s narrative about Russia and by what appeared to me as his “no nonsense” approach towards getting things done.  I wrote many articles for this blog saying that having hopes (not expectations!) for Trump was the right thing to do.  And, frankly, I think that at the time it was.  Last Fall I even wrote an entire chapter on this topic in the book “If I were King: Advice for President Trump“.   The big difference is that before his election we could only judge Trump by his words.  Now, however, we can judge him by his words and his actions and the latter show us a consistent pattern of supine subservience to the Neocons and their demands, from the betrayal of his friend and key advisor Flynn, to the recent threats to bomb Syria for, allegedly, “preparing” to use chemical munitions against civilians.

This might be his, shall we call it, “Las Vegas culture” – but Trump is all about form over substance and appearance over facts.  Just look at his frankly pathetic threats (with no less than 3 aircraft carrier strike groups!) against the DPRK or his half-assed missile strike on the Syrian airbase: it’s all a big show, nothing more.  No wonder the man likes “tweeting” – he seems to think in 140 character long “thought clusters”…

None of that would be too bad if the USA, and the West generally, had a halfway decent media and a Legislative Branch worthy of its name.  In theory, these could raise hell and demand that the President either resign or begin doing his job.  But, of course, they don’t and they won’t.  They hate Trump, of course, but they also own him.  He can make fun of them in “tweets” on his free time, but in terms of his policies he does exactly what they want.  And the very last thing they want is any kind of “detente” with Russia.  At most, they will impeach Trump just to humiliate him, but that’s about it.  They don’t even need to play their “Pence” card – Trump is what is colloquially known in US ghettos as their “punk-ass bitch”.

Ever since the ill-fated “GWOT” more or less petered out, Russia has become the indispensable bogeyman to terrify the public and justify multi-billion dollar corruption schemes.  Not only that, but a “resurgent Russia” is the cornerstone justification of the AngloZionist paranoia about a need to spend more on the war state, the police state and, of course, on corporate greed.  The powers that be are even re-heating old, Cold War era, scaring techniques:

The Defense Intelligence Agency has recently released a “Russian Military Power 2017” report. Since it is pretty well written, I actually recommend that you download and read it: it is a mix of pretty good information about the Russian Armed Forces and the garden variety nonsense about Russian hackers and their cyber-threat to US and its allies.  Just set aside the clearly politically-induced nonsense and you are left with a rather well made summary of what the Russian Armed Forces are up to these days.

I have to thank the DIA for this report: it made me feel young again, like I was in the 1980s when all the student of warfare and of the Soviet military were reading these annual “Soviet Military Power” reports with great interest.  But other than making some of us feel young, the real purpose of this document is clear and it is the very same one behind the Cold War era “Soviet Military Power” series: to justify an increase in “defense” (i.e. “aggression”) spending by showing how scary these evil Commies/Russikies were/are.

This would all be rather funny, and nostalgic in a way, if it did not show the total lack of imagination of the folks at the Pentagon.  Far from coming up with anything novel or interesting, they are bringing back into service stuff which for years had been collecting dust in the memories of now mostly retired Cold Warriors.  It is rather pathetic, really.

Over the past 30 years or so, Russia went from being the Soviet Union, to being a Somalia-like “democratic hell” during the 1990s, to becoming a completely new entity – a “New Russia” which is dramatically different from the Soviet Union of the 1980s. 

In contrast, the USA got completely stuck in its old patterns, except for this time they are “the same, but even worse”.  If the USA did not have nukes that would almost be okay (after all, the world can let “Uncle Sam” slowly lose his sclerotic brain, who cares?) but when a nuclear superpower is acting like an out-of-control rogue state, this is very, very, scary.

So back to our G20 meeting again.  The first thing which needs to be said is that Trump is weak, extremely weak: he goes in with the Ziomedia and Congress hating him and with a basically treacherous White House team clearly controlled by Pence, Kushner and the rest of the Neocon crazies.  To make things worse, Trump can offer the Russians absolutely nothing they would want or need.

Please don’t buy this sanctions canard.  The damage these sanctions could do they have already done.  The simple truth is that Russia has already survived the sanctions and come out even stronger, this is confirmed by international organizations and by the private sector. In fact, removing the sanctions right now would hurt the Russian economy far more, especially the agricultural sector, which has greatly benefited from the de-facto protectionist protection provided to the Russian economy by these sanctions.  Likewise, the Russian defense industry has successfully adapted to the total severance by the Ukronazi regime of all the defense contracts with Russia and now 100% Russian military systems and parts are being produced in Russia at a cheaper price and of a higher quality.  Besides, since Congress and UN Nikki have made it pretty darn clear that sanctions will remain in place until Russia agrees to return Crimea to the Ukraine, nothing will change until the current Ukraine finally breaks into three of four parts.

Trump could, in theory, offer the Russians to stop sabotaging the peace process in Syria and the Russians would surely welcome that.  But since the US policy of illegal air and missile strikes combined with a deployment of US forces on the ground in Syria is failing anyway, see here and here, the Russians are going to get what they want whether the US wants it or not.

As for the Ukraine, the situation there is so bad that an increasing number of specialists are saying that even the US has lost control of Banderastan and that now it’s going to be all about intra-Ukie power plays: the social, political, military, cultural and economic disaster has reach what I would call an “escape velocity” when the various processes taking place are basically chaotic, unpredictable and unmanageable.  I am personally very dubious that the Americans would have anything to offer the Russians.

How about the other way around?  What could the Russians offer Trump?

Again, I am afraid that nothing much either.

Russian foreign policies are all centered around the development of a multi-polar world and Putin is now extremely busy dealing with some seriously important matters.  So what can Putin offer Trump?  A promise not to invade Lithuania?  Trump knows that there never was any such threat to begin with.  It’s not like Putin can agree to pretend not to see the constant inflow of NATO forces and equipment into eastern Europe as the latter constitute a serious threat to the Russian national security.  Could the Russian promise that they won’t fly over the Baltic without their transponders on?  Hardly, since the first ones to switch off their transponders were the Americans.  What about a Russian promise not to intercept Secretary of Defense Mattis’ civilian transport aircraft over international waters?  But wait – that was the other way around, it’s NATO (a Polish F-16 actually) which intercepted Shoigu’s aircraft over the Baltic Sea during a long announced and official trip from mainland Russia to Kaliningrad (and who then ran away as soon as a Russian SU-27 showed the missiles it was carrying under it’s wings which by convention means “get the hell out of here or I shoot you down“), so its not the Russians, but the American who need to reign in their yapping poodle.

[Sidebar: I have never been a big admirer of Polish politicians, but now Poland is reaching truly historical lows in terms of cowardice, dishonor and plain stupidity; from their “war on statues“, to their idiotic accusation that the Russian ATC deliverately crashed an official Polish aircraft ( resulting form their categorical inability to accept that their own politicians gave a stupid order to their pilots) to Prime Minister Kazinsky’s war on “cyclists and vegetarians“, to the resurrection of the extremely dangerous “Three Seas” plan – Poland is constantly up to the no good and self-deafeningly stupid.  But then, what are we to expect from a country which considers a character like Pilsudksi as a national hero?  Sadly, Poland is repeating its worst historical mistake: the one of constantly trying to trigger a conflict between the West and Russia (apparently, history has taught them nothing).  So now, the tiny Polish poodle is barking at the Russian Bear convinced that Uncle Sam and the West will protect him if the bear comes down charging.  Truly, human stupidity is limitless].

I think I can guess what the Americans want: a partition of Syria, if not de jure then de factoI don’t think that this will work.  For one thing, the Americans are (yet again) overlooking the fact that the main actor in Syria is not Russia but Iran and Iran has no reason whatsoever to agree to any such partition.  Neither do the Russians, of course.  The only ones truly interested in a partition of Syria are,who else, the Israelis and since they are now back in charge of the White House, they are the ones pushing for this “solution”.  But that is something Turkey and Iran cannot accept as this would not only create a “Wahabistan” in eastern Syria, but also some kind of Kurdistan in the north – hardly a recipe for peace.  And, finally, let’s not forget the Syrians themselves.  They perfectly understand that any partition of their homeland would leave them squeezed between Israel in the southwest and some kind of crazy Daesh pretend-caliphate in the northeast – why would they ever accept such a rotten and, not to mention, unsustainable deal?

For the Americans, of course, it’s the other way around: since they could not get the black flag of Daesh to fly over Damascus they see the partition of Syria as the only acceptable outcome.  They will therefore oppose any peace process, especially one crafted by Russia, Iran and Turkey, with every ugly trick in their bag.

So, will the upcoming meeting yield nothing, nothing at all?

It will yield the fact that the two leaders spoke to each other, face to face.  That is not unimportant.  I also have some hopes for some type of ‘deconfliction’ agreements between Russia and the US/NATO (switch they bloody transponders on again!).  If we can get resumption of some kind of talks between NATO and Russia it would also be a good thing, even if nothing much concrete is achieved by this.  I suspect that Trump would love the ditch the Ukraine, but he can’t do that on political reasons.  If the Russians can con the Americans to endorse, even just verbally, the Astana talks on Syria that would be good because it would make it marginally harder for the Pentagon and/or the CIA to engage in false flag chemical attacks or any other such nonsense.  Am I missing something?  Yeah, probably some kind of  “cultural exchanges” (that’s when diplomats are truly desperate and have nothing else to offer) or a common plan to protect polar bears (thank God for small things all the same!).

The Russians will probably try to get Trump into agreeing to some kind of new UN Resolution on Syria, but since we all know that the USA disregards UN resolutions anyway, it won’t be much of a victory, even if it will feel good for a while.

I hope I am wrong, really wrong, totally wrong even.  I will be watching the (hopefully joint) press conference of Trump and Putin on Friday with a tiny leftover and paradoxical spark of hope that maybe, just maybe, Trump has something good left inside him.  But I won’t be holding my breath.  They say that hope dies last.  Maybe.  I will find out on Friday.

Germany and NATO – Preparing for a Fascist Repression in Europe?

May 15, 2017

by Peter KoenigGermany and NATO – Preparing for a Fascist Repression in Europe?

While Washington is in turmoil, Trump’s firing of FBI’s Director Comey being hailed by some, condemned by others and questioned with innuendo by yet another group of critics, it looks like the U-turn The Donald has supposedly made a few weeks ago, is fizzling out – into a cloud of confusion and chaos. And who are the beneficiaries of this chaos? – The Neocon-Zion-Democrats, who else?

Is Trump becoming, or has already become a Banana Republic dictator? Should he be tried as war criminal along with Obama, Bush, Clinton and their illustrious predecessors, all the way back to JFK and beyond, including those who instigated world wars and conflicts around the globe for the last 200 years? Sadly, there is no justice left in so-called international courts of justice today. They have all been coopted by the hidden bloody fingers, pulling the strings on Washington and Brussels.

Is Trump’s government about to collapse from the pressure of the Neocon-Zion-Demo-Division of the Deep State? Speculations no end, with emerging suggestion that the controversial President had already committed enough unconventional deeds to be impeached; and Russiagate, one of them, is just not going away, despite all logic to the contrary. It is another reflection of the idiocy of the presstitute media. But they get away with it, as long as brainwashed masses still swallow the mass-media’s lies and deceptions in their comfortable armchairs. The swamp in Washington is steaming – and about to swallow politicians from all walks.

Will there be a nuclear war? Who will strike first? Western war-mongering Pentagon and NATO generals hope – that the US will launch a pre-emptive strike against Russia and /or China. It would most likely be triggered by a false flag. For example, North Korea is made believe having launched a (nuclear) attack on Japan. Speculations to this effect have already circulated.

But what if Russia’s early warning system which is based on top-notch technology, detects such an intended first strike and reacts instantly? An atomic WWIII – with full destruction and almost no survivors? All these realistic ideas are tossed up and down – leaving a public on either side of the Atlantic in fear. And we know that fear and confusion are the best weapons to panic and stalemate a population.

Who will survive? – Who will be next? And some even go as far as speculating, who may replace President Trump? – Most obviously, his Vice President, Mike Pence, who fits the neocons’ gambit very well. After all, they were the ones who chose him on Trump’s behalf.

That’s the state of things according to the main stream media. The US is crumbling and the West along with it. The crumbling is very loud. The softer noises are becoming undetectable.

On the European Continent, hidden from the common ear and eye, clandestine warfare against European citizens is planned by – the German Bundeswehr, NATO and other European armed forces. They are preparing for subjugating possible social upheavals, if necessary killing their own citizens – that’s what NATO-inspired Brussels is up to. And the leader, who else, is NATO-inspired Germany – the front runner of European puppets, a position for which France is now competing with Macron – and perhaps winning.

As reported by Susan Bonath, independent investigative journalist, working as a regular contributor for the German Die Junge Welt (The Youth World) – something horrendous is emerging in a small north-eastern town of Germany’s landlocked Federal State of Saxony-Anhalt. In one of Europe’s most modern military training camps, an entire ghost town is being built at the tune of several hundred billion euros. Most of the German (or European) tax-payers have never heard of it. By 2018 the facility will be ready for troop training to fight European citizens in European cities, should they dare to go on the barricades against the atrocities of their leaders and oligarchs.

The concept is only new to Europe. The US, for years, has been building hidden garrisons around ‘vulnerable’ agglomerations – New York, Detroit, Chicago – and many more – ready to strike if massive protests should break out. For last November’s US Presidential election, they have been put on high alert. In fact, intensive troop movements could be observed from the air.

With Macron’s ‘election’ to President of France – or rather the Rothschild shoe-in – to protect the financial oligarchs of France and Europe, to shield unfettered capitalism from social disturbances, Europe is fast moving towards a state of fascist repression, accompanied by a fascist economy, a double whammy for the rich, and a double barrier aimed at eliminating peoples’ freedom to live decent and happy lives.

In his victory speech, Macron said as a priority that France will be first in ’fighting terrorism’. This is unconstrained support to the continuation of the ‘false flag’ approach, killing a few of your own citizens or policemen, to justify further and further clamp-downs on civil liberties. France, under Hollande, Washington’s ultra-puppet, has Europe’s most solid track record for false flag attacks. France may become the first country in Europe to put a permanent State of Emergency – akin to Martial Law – into her Constitution. Where Hollande so far had failed, Macron may succeed. Such an example would most like make school throughout vassal Europe. The training facilities in northern Germany, supported by Madame Merkel, to oppress and kill protesting Europeans fall right in line with Macron’s Machiavellian philosophy.

On the other hand, Greece is the epitome of the killing of a nation by financial instruments. The Greek allow it for reasons beyond logic. Maybe for fear not obeying and choosing the only way out, GREXIT, might be worse than financial strangulation? – These are apparently the arguments voiced, but unsubstantiated, by former Greek Finance Minister Varoufakis, who is ever so much interested in staying in the limelight, influencing public opinion by his self-styled stardom. Is this caviar leftist supporting his country’s demise as a deterrent for others who might want to regain sovereignty from the bulldozers of Washington and Brussels?

George Orwell comes to mind, when he says, referring to James Burnham’s The Machiavellians – “a democratic society has never existed and, so far as we can see, never will exist. Society is of its nature oligarchical, and the power of the oligarchy always rests upon force and fraud… Power can sometimes be won and maintained without violence, but never without fraud.”

This extends well to Globalization’s declaration of Justice: “All that’s yours is mine, and all that’s mine is mine.”

Wake up and beware, what’s brewing at the NATO-German urban training camp ground is a defense mechanism to assure the ruling class privileges will never be lost. Europeans – on the barricades now, before it’s too late!

Peter Koenig is an economist and geopolitical analyst. He is also a former World Bank staff and worked extensively around the world in the fields of environment and water resources. He lectures at universities in the US, Europe and South America. He writes regularly for Global Research, ICH, RT, Sputnik, PressTV, The 4th Media (China), TeleSUR, The Vineyard of The Saker Blog, and other internet sites. He is the author of Implosion – An Economic Thriller about War, Environmental Destruction and Corporate Greed – fiction based on facts and on 30 years of World Bank experience around the globe. He is also a co-author of The World Order and Revolution! – Essays from the Resistance.

Making sense of the “super fuse” scare

Making sense of the “super fuse” scareMay 11, 2017

This article was written for the Unz Review

For weeks now I have been getting panicked emails with readers asking me whether the USA had developed a special technology called “super fuses” which would make it possible for the USA to successfully pull-off a (preemptive) disarming first strike against Russia. Super-fuses were also mentioned in combination with an alleged lack by Russia of a functioning space-based infrared early warning system giving the Russians less time to react to a possible US nuclear attack.

While there is a factual basis to all this, the original report already mislead the reader with a shocking title “How US nuclear force modernization is undermining strategic stability: The burst-height compensating super-fuze” and by offering several unsubstantiated conclusions. Furthermore, this original report was further discussed by many observers who simply lack the expertise to understand what the facts mentioned in the report really mean. Then the various sources started quoting each other and eventually this resulted in a completely baseless “super fuse scare”. Let’s try to make some sense of all this.

Understanding nuclear strikes and their targets

To understand what really has taken place I need to first define a couple of crucial terms:

  • Hard-target kill capability: this refers to the capability of a missile to destroy a strongly protected target such as a underground missile silo or a deeply buried command post.
  • Soft-target kill capability: the capability to destroy lightly or unprotected targets.
  • Counterforce strike: this refers to a strike aimed at the enemy’s military capabilities.
  • Countervalue strike: this refers to a strike on non-military assets such as cities.

Since strategic nuclear missile silos and command posts are well protected and deeply buried, only hard-target kill (HTK) capable missiles can execute a counterforce strike. Soft-target kill (STK) capable systems are therefore usually seen as being the ultimate retaliatory capability to hit the enemies cities. The crucial notion here is that HTK capability is not a function of explosive power, but of accuracy. Yes, in theory, a hugely powerful weapon can compensate to some degree for a lack of accuracy, but in reality both the USA and the USSR/Russia have long understood that the real key to HTK is accuracy.

During the Cold War, intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBMs) were more accurate than submarine launched ballistic missiles (SLBMs) simply because targeting from the surface and from a fixed position was much easier than targeting from inside a submerged and moving submarine. The American were the first to successfully deploy a HTK capable SLBM with their Trident D-5. The Russians have only acquired this capability very recently (with their R-29RMU Sineva SLBM).

According to the Bulletin of Atomic Scientists just a decade ago only 20% of US SLBMs were HTK capable. Now, with the ‘super-fuse’ 100% of US SLBMs are HTK capable. What these super-fuses do is very accurately measure the optimal altitude at which to detonate thereby partially compensating for a lack of accuracy of a non-HTK capable weapon. To make a long story short, these super-fuses made all US SLBMs HTK capable.

Does that matter?

Yes and no. What that means on paper is that the US has just benefited from a massive increase in the number of US missiles with HTK capability. Thus, the US has now a much larger missile force capable of executing a disarming counterforce strike. In reality, however, things are much more complicated than that.

Understanding counterforce strikes

Executing a disarming counterforce strike against the USSR and, later, Russia has been an old American dream. Remember Reagan’s “Star Wars” program? The idea behind it was simple: to develop the capability to intercept enough incoming Soviet warheads to protect the USA from a retaliatory Soviet counter strike. It would work something like this: destroy, say, 70% of the Soviet ICBM/SLBMs and intercept the remaining 30% before they can reach the USA. This was total nonsense both technologically (the technology did not exist) and strategically (just a few Soviet “leakers” could wipe-out entire US cities, who could take such a risk?). The more recent US deployment of anti-ballistic missile systems in Europe has exactly the same purpose – to protect the USA from a retaliatory counterstrike. Without going into complex technical discussions, let’s just say that this point in time, this system would never protect the USA from anything. But in the future, we could imagine such a scenario

  1. The USA and Russia agree to further deep cuts in their nuclear strategic forces thereby dramatically reducing the total number of Russian SLBM/ICBMs.
  2. The USA deploys all around Russia anti-ballistic systems which can catch and destroy Russian missiles in the early phase of their flight towards the USA.
  3. The USA also deploys a number of systems in space or around the USA to intercept any incoming Russian warhead.
  4. The USA having a very large HTK-capable force executes a successful counterforce strike destroying 90% (or so) of the Russian capabilities and then the rest are destroyed during their flight.

This is the dream. It will never work. Here is why:

  1. The Russians will not agree to deep cuts in their nuclear strategic forces.
  2. The Russians already have deployed the capability to destroy the forward deployed US anti-ballistic system in Europe.
  3. Russian warheads and missiles are now maneuverable and can even use any trajectory, including over the South Pole, to reach the USA. New Russian missiles have a dramatically shorter and faster first stage burn period making them much harder to intercept.
  4. Russia’s reliance on ballistic missiles will be gradually replace with strategic (long-range) cruise missiles (more about that later).
  5. This scenario mistakenly assumes that the USA will know where the Russian SLBM launching submarines will be when they launch and that they will be able to engage them (more about that later).
  6. This scenario completely ignores the Russian road-mobile and rail-mobile ICBMs (more about that later).

Understanding MIRVs

Before explaining points 4, 5 and 6 above, I need to mention another important fact: one missile can carry either one single warhead or several (up to 12 and more). When a missile carries several independently targetable warheads it is called MIRVed as in “multiple independently targetable reentry vehicle”.

MIRVs are important for several reasons. First, one single missile with 10 warheads can, in theory, destroy 10 different targets. Alternatively, one single missile can carry, say 3-4 real warheads and 6-7 decoys. In practical terms what look like one missile on take-off can turn into 5 real warheads, all targeted at different objectives and another 5 fake decoys designed to make interception that more difficult. MIRVs, however, also present a big problem: they are lucrative targets. If with one of “my” nuclear warheards I can destroy 1 of “your” MIRVed missiles, I lose 1 warhead but you lose 10. This is one of the reasons the USA is moving away from land-based MIRVed ICBMs.

The important consideration here is that Russia has a number of possible options to chose from and how many of her missiles will be MIRVed is impossible to predict. Besides, all US and Russian SLBMs will remain MIRVed for the foreseeable future (de-MIRVing SLBMs make no sense, really, since the entire nuclear missile carrying submarine (or SSBN) is a gigantic MIRVed launching pad by definition).

In contrast to MIRVed missile, single warheads missiles are very bad targets to try to destroy using nuclear weapons: even if “my” missile destroys “yours” we both lost 1 missile each. What is the point? Worse, if I have to use 2 of “mine” to make really sure that “yours” is really destroyed, my strike will result in me using 2 warheads in exchange for only 1 of yours. This makes no sense at all.

Finally, in retaliatory countervalue strikes, MIRVed ICBM/SLBMs are a formidable threat: just one single R-30 Bulava (SS-N-30) SLBM or one single R-36 Voevoda (SS-18) ICBM can destroy ten American cities. Is that a risk worth taking? Say the USA failed to destroy one single Borei-class SSBN – in theory that could mean that this one SSBN could destroy up to 200 American cities (20 SLBMs with 10 MIRVs each). How is that for a risk?

Contrasting the US and Russian nuclear triad

Strategic nuclear weapons can be deployed on land, in the oceans or delivered by aircraft. This is called the “nuclear triad”. I won’t discuss the aircraft based part of the US and Russian triads here, as they don’t significantly impact the overall picture and because they are roughly comparable. The sea and land based systems and their underlying strategies could not be any more different. At sea, the USA has had HTK capabilities for many years now and the US decided to hold the most important part of the US nuclear arsenal in SSBNs. In contrast, the Russians chose to develop road-mobile intercontinental ballistic missiles. The very first one was the RT-2PM Topol (SS-25) deployed in 1985, followed by the T-2PM2 «Topol-M» (SS-27) deployed in 1997 and the revolutionary RT-24 Yars or Topol’-MR (SS-29) deployed in 2010 (the US considered deployed road-mobile strategic missiles, but never succeeded in developing the technology).

The Russians are also deployed rail-mobile missiles called RT-23 Molodets (SS-24) and are about to deploy a newer version called RS-27 Barguzin (SS-31?). This is what they look like:

Russian road mobile and rail mobile ICBMs

SSBNs and road and rail mobile missiles all have two things in common: they are mobile and they rely on concealment for survival as neither of them can hope to survive. The SSBN hides in the depths of the ocean, the road-mobile missile launcher drives around the immense Russian expanses and can hide, literally, in any forest. As for the rail-mobile missile train, it hides be being completely indistinguishable from any other train on the huge Russian railroad network (even from up close it is impossible to tell whether what you are seeing is a regular freight train or a missile launching special train). To destroy these systems, accuracy is absolutely not enough: you need to find them and you need to find them before they fire their missiles. And that is, by all accounts, quite impossible.

The Russian Navy likes to keep its SSBNs either under the polar ice-cap or in so-called “bastions” such as the Sea of Okhotsk. While these are not really “no-go” zones for US attack submarines (SSN), they are extremely dangerous areas where the Russian Navy has a huge advantage of the US (if only because the US attack submarine cannot count on the supper of surface ships or aircraft). The US Navy has some of the best submarines on the planet and superbly trained crews, but I find the notion that US SSNs could find and destroy all Russian SSBNs before the latter can launch unlikely in the extreme.

As for the land-based rail-mobile and road-mobile missiles, they are protected by Russian Air Defenses which are the most advanced on the planet, not the kind of airspace the US would want to send B-53, B-1 or B-2 bombers in. But most importantly, these missiles are completely hidden so even if the USA could somehow destroy them, it would failed to find enough of them to make a first disarming strike a viable option. By the way, the RS-24 has four MIRVs (make that 4 US cities) while the RS-27 will have between 10 and 16 (make that another 10 to 16 US cities vaporized).

Looking at geography and cruise missiles

Finally, let’s take a look at geography and cruise missiles. Two Russian cruise missiles are especially important to us: the Kh-102 and the 3M-14K(?):

KH-102 3M-14K
Range: 5500km 2600km
Launcher: Strategic bomber Aircraft, ship, container
Warhead: Nuclear 450kt Nuclear (unknown)

What is important with these two cruise missiles is that the KH-102 has a huge range and that the KM-14K can be fired from aircraft, ships and even containers. Take a look at this video which shows the capabilities of this missile:

Now consider where the vast majority of US cities are located – right along the East and West coasts of the USA and the fact that the US has no air defenses of any kind protecting them. A Russian strategic bomber could hit any West Coast from the middle of the Pacific ocean. As for a Russian submarine, it could hit any US city from the middle of the Atlantic. Finally, the Russians could conceal an unknown number of cruise missile in regular looking shipping container (flying Russian flag or, for that matter, any other flag) and simply sail to the immediate proximity to the US coast and unleash a barrage of nuclear cruise missiles.

How much reaction time would such a barrage give the US government?

Understanding reaction time

It is true that the Soviet and Russian space-based early warning system is in bad shape. But did you know that China never bothered developing such a space based system in the first place? So what is wrong with the Chinese, are they stupid, technologically backward or do they know something we don’t?

To answer that question we need to look at the options facing a country under nuclear missile attack. The first option is called “launch on warning”: you see the incoming missiles and you press the “red button” (keys in reality) to launch your own missiles. That is sometimes referred to as “use them or lose them”. The next option is “launch on strike”: you launch all you got as soon as a nuclear strike on your territory is confirmed. And, finally, there is the “retaliation after ride-out“: you absorb whatever your enemy shot at you, then take a decision to strike back. What is obvious is that China has adopted, whether by political choice or due to limitation in space capabilities, either a “launch on strike” or a “retaliation after ride-out” option. This is especially interesting since China possesses relatively few nuclear warheads and even fewer real long range ICBMs .

Contrast that with the Russians who have recently confirmed that they have long had a “dead hand system” called “Perimetr” which automatically ascertains that a nuclear attack has taken place and then automatically launches a counterstrike. That would be a “launch on strike” posture, but it is also possible that Russia has a double-posture: she tries to have the capability to launch on warning, but double-secures herself with an automated “dead hand” “launch on strike” capability.

Take a look at this estimate of worldwide stocks of strategic nuclear warheads: While China is credited with only 260 warheads, Russia still has a whopping 7’000 warheads. And a “dead hand” capability. And yet China feels confident enough to announce a “no first use” policy. How can they say that with no space-based nuclear missile launch detection capability?

Many will say that the Chinese wished they had more nukes and a space-based based nuclear missile launch detection capability, but that their current financial and technological means simply do not allow that. Maybe. But my personal guess is that they realize that even their very minimal force represents a good enough deterrent for any potential aggressor. And they might have a point.

Let me ask you this: how many US generals and politicians would be willing to sacrifice just one major US city in order to disarm China or Russia? Some probably would. But I sure hope that the majority would realize that the risk will always remain huge.

For one thing, modern nuclear warfare has, so far, only been “practiced” only on paper and with computers (and thank God for that!)? So nobody *really* knows for sure how a nuclear war would play itself out. The only thing which is certain is that just the political and economic consequences of would catastrophic and totally unpredictable. Furthermore, it remains very unclear how such a war could be stopped short of totally destroying one side. The so-called “de-escalation” is a fascinating concept, but so far nobody has really figured this out.

Finally, I am personally convinced that both the USA and Russia have more than enough survivable nuclear weapons to actually decide to ride out a full-scale enemy attack. That is the one big issue which many well-meaning pacifist never understood: it is a good thing that “the USA and Russia have the means to blow-up the world ten times over” simply because even one side succeeded in destroying, say, 95% of the US or Russian nuclear forces, the remaining 5% would be more than enough to wipe-out the attacking side in a devastating countervalue attack. If Russia and the USA each had, say, only 10 nuclear warheads then the temptation to try to take them out would be much higher.

This is scary and even sick, but having a lot of nuclear weapons is safer from a “first-strike stability” point of view than having few. Yes, we do live in a crazy world.

Consider that in times of crisis both the US and Russia would scramble their strategic bombers and keep them in the air, refueling them when needed, for as long as needed to avoid having them destroyed on the ground. So even if the USA destroyed ALL Russian ICBM/SLBMs, there would be quite a few strategic bombers in holding patterns in staging areas which could be given the order to strike. And here we reach one last crucial concept:

Counterforce strikes require a lot of HTK capable warheads. The estimates by both sides are kept secret, of course, but we are talking over 1000 targets on each side at least listed, if not actually targeted. But a countervalue strike would require much less. The US has only 10 cities with over one million people. Russia has only 12. And, remember, in theory one warhead is enough for one city (that is not true, but for all practical purposes it is). Just look what 9/11 did to the USA and imagine of, say, “only” Manhattan had been truly nuked. You can easily imagine the consequences.

Conclusion 1: super-fuses are not really that super at all

The super-fuses scare is so overblown that it is almost an urban legend. The fact is that even if all the US SLBMs are now HTK capable and even if Russia does not have a functional space-based missile launch detection capability (she is working on a new one, by the way), this in no way affects the fundamental fact that there is nothing, nothing at all, that the USA could come up with to prevent Russia from obliterating the USA in a retaliatory strike. The opposite is also true, the Russians have exactly zero hope of nuking the USA and survive the inevitable US retaliation.

The truth is that as far back as the early 1980s Soviet (Marshal Ogarkov) and US specialists had already come to the conclusion that a nuclear war is unwinnable. In the past 30 years two things have dramatically changed the nature of the game: first, an increasing number of conventional weapons have become comparable in their effects to small nuclear weapons and cruise missiles have become vastly more capable. The trend today is for low-RCS (stealth) long range hypersonic cruise missiles and maneuvering ICBM warheads which will make it even harder to detect and intercept them. Just think about it: if the Russians fired a cruise missile volley from a submarine say, 100km off the US coast, how much reaction time will the US have? Say that these low-RCS missile would begin flying at medium altitude being for all practical purpose invisible to radar, infra-red and even sound, then lower themselves down to 3-5 m over the Atlantic and then accelerate to a Mach 2 or Mach 3 speed. Sure, they will become visible to radars once they crosses the horizon, but the remaining reaction time would be measured in seconds, not minutes. Besides, what kind of weapon system could stop that missile type of anyway? Maybe the kind of defenses around a US aircraft carrier (maybe), but there is simply nothing like that along the US coast.

As for ballistic missile warheads, all the current and foreseeable anti-ballistic systems rely on calculations for a non-maneuvering warhead. Once the warheads begin to make turns and zig-zag, then the computation needed to intercept them become harder by several orders of magnitude. Some Russian missiles, like the R-30 Bulava, can even maneuver during their initial burn stage, making their trajectory even harder to estimate (and the missile itself harder to intercept).

The truth is that for the foreseeable future ABM systems will be much more expensive and difficult to build then ABM-defeating missiles. Also, keep in mind that an ABM missile itself is also far, far more expensive than a warhead. Frankly, I have always suspected that the American obsession with various types of ABM technologies is more about giving cash to the Military Industrial Complex and, at best, developing new technologies useful elsewhere.

Conclusion 2: the nuclear deterrence system remains stable, very stable

At the end of WWII, the Soviet Union’s allies, moved by the traditional western love for Russia, immediately proceeded to plan for a conventional and a nuclear war against the Soviet Union (see Operation Unthinkable and Operation Dropshot). Neither plan was executed, the western leaders were probably rational enough not to want to trigger a full-scale war against the armed forces which had destroyed roughly 80% of the Nazi war machine. What is certain, however, is that both sides fully understood that the presence of nuclear weapons profoundly changed the nature of warfare and that the world would never be the same again: for the first time in history all of mankind faced a truly existential threat. As a direct result of this awareness, immense sums of money were given to some of the brightest people on the planet to tackle the issue of nuclear warfare and deterrence. This huge effort resulted in an amazingly redundant, multi-dimensional and sophisticated system which cannot be subverted by any one technological breakthrough. There is SO much redundancy and security built into the Russian and American strategic nuclear forces that a disarming first strike is all but impossible, even if we make the most unlikely and far-fetched assumptions giving one side all the advantages and the other all the disadvantages. For most people it is very hard to wrap their heads around such a hyper-survivable system, but both the USA and Russia have run hundreds and even thousands of very advanced simulations of nuclear exchanges, spending countless hours and millions of dollars trying to find a weak spot in the other guy’s system, and each time the result was the same: there is always enough to inflict an absolutely cataclysmic retaliatory counter-strike.

Conclusion 3: the real danger to our common future

The real danger to our planet comes not from a sudden technological breakthrough which would make nuclear war safe, but from the demented filled minds of the US Neocons who believe that they can bring Russia to heel in a game of “nuclear chicken”. These Neocons have apparently convinced themselves that making conventional threats against Russia, such as unilaterally imposing no-fly zones over Syria, does not bring us closer to a nuclear confrontation. It does.

The Neocons love to bash the United Nations in general, and the veto power of the Permanent Five (P5) at the UN Security Council, but they apparently forgot the reason why this veto power was created in the first place: to outlaw any action which could trigger a nuclear war. Of course, this assumes that the P5 all care about international law. Now that the USA has clearly become a rogue state whose contempt for international law is total, there is no legal mechanism left to stop the US from committing actions which endanger the future of mankind. This is what is really scary, not “super-fuses”.

What we are facing today is a nuclear rogue state run by demented individuals who, steeped in a culture of racial superiority, total impunity and imperial hubris, are constantly trying to bring us closer to a nuclear war. These people are not constrained by anything, not morals, not international law, not even common sense or basic logic. In truth, we are dealing with a messianic cult every bit as insane as the one of Jim Jones or Adolf Hitler and like all self-worshiping crazies they profoundly believe in their invulnerability.

It is the immense sin of the so-called “Western world” that it let these demented individuals take control with little or no resistance and that now almost the entire western society lack the courage to even admit that it surrendered itself to what I can only call a satanic cult. Alexander Solzhenitsyn prophetic words spoken in 1978 have now fully materialized:

A decline in courage may be the most striking feature that an outside observer notices in the West today. The Western world has lost its civic courage, both as a whole and separately, in each country, in each government, in each political party, and, of course, in the United Nations. Such a decline in courage is particularly noticeable among the ruling and intellectual elites, causing an impression of a loss of courage by the entire society. There are many courageous individuals, but they have no determining influence on public life (Harvard Speech, 1978)

Five years later, Solzhenitsyn warned us again saying,

To the ill-considered hopes of the last two centuries, which have reduced us to insignificance and brought us to the brink of nuclear and non-nuclear death, we can propose only a determined quest for the warm hand of God, which we have so rashly and self-confidently spurned. Only in this way can our eyes be opened to the errors of this unfortunate twentieth century and our hands be directed to setting them right. There is nothing else to cling to in the landslide: the combined vision of all the thinkers of the Enlightenment amounts to nothing. Our five continents are caught in a whirlwind. But it is during trials such as these that the highest gifts of the human spirit are manifested. If we perish and lose this world, the fault will be ours alone. (Tempelton Speech, 1983)

We have been warned, but will we heed that warning?

The Saker

The history of the Neocon takeover of the USA (a 4 part analysis)

 

Foreword by the Saker: the four articles below, combined into one, are an exception to the normal rule which is that this blog doe not republish articles already published in the past.  In this case, at the request of Paul Fitzgerald and Elizabeth Gould, I decided to make an exception due to the importance and interest of the topic: the origins of the Neocon movement.  I am particularly grateful to Paul and Elizabeth who have agreed to my request to remove the original copyright restrictions on this material for publication on the Saker blog.  The analysis they wrote offers a very valuable insight into the roots and history of the Neocon phenomenon.

The history of the Neocon takeover of the USA (a 4 part analysis)

By Paul Fitzgerald and Elizabeth Gould

Part 1 – American Imperialism Leads the World into Dante’s Vision of Hell

https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/9/9b/Inferno_Canto_3_line_9.jpg/307px-Inferno_Canto_3_line_9.jpg

“The Gate of Hell” by Gustave Doré for Dante’s “Inferno.” (Wikimedia)

https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Inferno_Canto_3_line_9.jpg

Lasciate ogne speranza, voi ch’intrate. (Abandon all hope ye who enter here.)”
—Dante, “The Divine Comedy,” Inferno (Part 1), Canto 3, Line 9

Before the Tomahawk Missiles start flying between Moscow and New York, Americans had better educate themselves fast about the forces and the people who claim that Russia covered up a Syrian government gas attack on its own people. Proof no longer seems to matter in the rush to further transform the world into Dante’s vision of Hell. Accusations made by anonymous sources, spurious sources and outright frauds have become enough. Washington’s paranoia and confusion bear an uncanny resemblance to the final days of the Third Reich, when the leadership in Berlin became completely unglued. Tensions have been building since fall with accusations that Russian media interfered with our presidential election and is a growing threat to America’s national security. The latest WikiLeaks release strongly suggested that it was the CIA’s own contract hackers behind Hillary Clinton’s email leaks and not Russians. The U.S. has a long reputation of accusing others of things they didn’t do and planting fake news stories to back it up in order to provide a cause for war. The work of secret counter intelligence services is to misinform the public in order to shape opinion and that’s what this is. The current U.S. government campaign to slander Russia over anything and everything it does bears all the earmarks of a classic disinformation campaign but this time even crazier. Considering that Washington has put Russia, China and Iran on its anti-globalist hit-list from which no one is allowed to escape, drummed up charges against them shouldn’t come as a surprise. But accusing the Russians of undermining American democracy and interfering in an election is tantamount to an act of war and that simply is not going to wash. This time the United States is not demonizing an ideological enemy (USSR) or a religious one (al Qaeda, ISIS, Daesh etc.). It’s making this latest venture into the blackest of propaganda a race war, the way the Nazis made their invasion of Russia a race war in 1941 and that is not a war the United States can justify or win.

The level and shrillness of the latest disinformation campaign has been growing for some time. But the American public has lived in a culture of fake news (formerly known as propaganda) for so long many have grown to accept fake news as real news. George Orwell saw this coming and here it is. As a big supporter of U.S. military intervention in Cuba and avowed practitioner of “yellow journalism”, in 1897 William Randolph Hearst admonished the illustrator he’d sent to Cuba who’d found no war to illustrate; “You furnish the pictures and I’ll furnish the war.” Hearst eventually got his war and America’s experiment in imperialism was off and running.

Americans should know by now that their country’s wars are fertile ground for biased, one-sided, xenophobic, fake news and the United States has been in a permanent state of war since 1941. Although the targets have shifted over the years, the purpose of the propaganda hasn’t. Most cultures are coerced, cajoled or simply threatened into accepting known falsehoods demonizing their enemies during wartime but no matter how frequently repeated or cleverly told—no lie can hold if the war never ends. The legendary Cold Warrior, Time and Life Magazine’s Henry Luce considered his personal fight against Communism to be “a declaration of private war.” He’d even asked one of his executives whether or not the idea was probably “unlawful and probably mad?” Nonetheless, despite his doubts about his own sanity, Luce allowed the CIA to use his Time/Life as a cover for the agency’s operationsand to provide credentials to CIA personnel.

Luce was not alone in his service to the CIA’s propaganda wars. Recently declassified documentsreveal the CIA’s propaganda extended to all the mainstream media outlets. Dozens of the most respected journalists and opinion makers during the Cold War considered it a privilege to keep American public opinion from straying away from CIA control.

Now that the new Cold War has turned hot, we are led to believe that the Russians have breached this wall of not-so-truthful journalists and rattled the foundation of everything we are supposed to hold dear about the purity of the U.S. election process and “freedom of the press” in America.

Black propaganda is all about lying. Authoritarian governments lie regularly. Totalitarian governments do it so often nobody believes them. A government based on democratic principles like the United States is supposed to speak the truth, but when the U.S. government’s own documents reveal it has been lying over and over again for decades, the jig is up.

Empires have been down this road before and it doesn’t end well. Americans are now being told they should consider all Russian opinion as fake and ignore any information that challenges the mainstream media and U.S. government on what is truth and what is the lie. But for the first time in memory Americans have become aware that the people Secretary of State Colin Powell once called “the crazies”, have taken the country over the cliff.

The neoconservative hitmen and hit-ladies of Washington have a long list of targets that pass from generation to generation. Their influence on American government has been catastrophic yet it never seems to end. Senator J. William Fulbright identified their irrational system for making endless war in Vietnam 45 years ago in a New Yorker article titled Reflections in Thrall to Fear.

“The truly remarkable thing about this Cold War psychology is the totally illogical transfer of the burden of proof from those who make charges to those who question them… The Cold Warriors, instead of having to say how they knew that Vietnam was part of a plan for the Communization of the world, so manipulated the terms of the public discussion as to be able to demand that the skeptics prove that it was not. If the skeptics could not then the war must go on—to end it would be recklessly risking the national security.”

Fulbright realized that Washington’s resident crazies had turned the world inside out by concluding, “We come to the ultimate illogic: war is the course of prudence and sobriety until the case for peace is proved under impossible rules of evidence [or never]–or until the enemy surrenders. Rational men cannot deal with each other on this basis.” But these were not rational men and their need to further their irrational quest only increased with the loss of the Vietnam War.

Having long forgotten the lessons of Vietnam and after a tragic repeat in Iraq that the highly respected General William Odom considered “equivalent to the Germans at Stalingrad,” the crazies are at it again. With no one to stop them, they have kicked off an updated version of the Cold War against Russia as if nothing had changed since the last one ended in 1992. The original Cold War was immensely expensive to the United States and was conducted at the height of America’s military and financial power. The United States is no longer that country. Since it was supposedly about the ideological “threat” of Communism, Americans need to ask before it’s too late exactly what kind of threat does a Capitalist/Christian Russia pose to the leader of the “Free World” this time?

Muddying the waters in a way not seen since Senator Joe McCarthy and the height of the Red Scare in the 1950s, the “Countering Disinformation and Propaganda Act” signed into law without fanfare by Obama in December 2016 officially authorizes a government censorship bureaucracy comparable only to George Orwell’s fictional Ministry of Truth in his novel 1984. Referred to as “The Global Engagement Center,” the official purpose of the new bureaucracy will be to “recognize, understand, expose, and counter foreign state and non-state propaganda and disinformation efforts aimed at undermining United States national security interests.” But the real purpose of this totally Orwellian Center will be to manage, eliminate or censor any dissenting views that challenge Washington’s newly manufactured version of the truth and to intimidate, harass or jail anyone who tries. Criminalizing dissent is nothing new in time of war, but after 16 years of ceaseless warfare in Afghanistan, a Stalingrad–like defeat in Iraq and with Henry Kissinger advising President Trump on foreign policy, the Global Engagement Center has already assumed the characteristics of a dangerous farce.

The brilliant American satirical songwriter of the 1950s and 60s Tom Lehrer once attributed his early retirement to Henry Kissinger, saying “Political satire became obsolete [in 1973] when Henry Kissinger was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize.” Kissinger’s duplicitous attempts at securing an “honorable peace” in America’s war in Vietnam deserved at least ridicule. His long, drawn out negotiations extended the war for four years at the cost of 22,000 American lives and countless Vietnamese. According to University of California researcher Larry Berman, author of 2001’s No Peace, No Honor: Nixon, Kissinger, and Betrayal in Vietnam, the Paris peace accords negotiated by Kissinger were never even expected to work, but were only to serve as a justification for a brutal and permanent air war once they were violated. Berman writes, “Nixon recognized that winning the peace, like the war would be impossible to achieve, but he planned for indefinite stalemate by using the B 52s to prop up the government of South Vietnam until the end of his presidency… but Watergate derailed the plan.”

The Vietnam War had broken the eastern establishment’s hold over foreign policy long before Nixon and Kissinger’s entry onto the scene. Détente with the Soviet Union had come about during the Johnson administration in an effort to bring some order out of the chaos and Kissinger had carried it through Nixon and Ford. But while dampening one crisis, détente created an even worse one by breaking open the longstanding internal-deep-state-struggle for control of U.S. policy toward the Soviet Union. Vietnam represented more than just a strategic defeat; it represented a conceptual failure in the half-century battle to contain Soviet-style Communism. The Pentagon Papers revealed the extent of the U.S. government’s deceit and incompetence but rather than concede that defeat and chart a new course, its proponents fought back with a Machiavellian ideological campaign known as the experiment in competitive analysis or for short; Team B.

Writing in the Los Angeles Times in August 2004 in an article titled It’s Time to Bench “Team B”, Lawrence J. Korb, a Senior Fellow at the Center for American Progress and assistant secretary of defense from 1981 to 1985 came forward on what he knew to be the real tragedy represented by 9/11. “The reports of the Sept. 11 commission and the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence missed the real problem facing the intelligence community, which is not organization or culture but something known as the “Team B” concept. And the real villains are the hard-liners who created the concept out of an unwillingness to accept the unbiased and balanced judgments of intelligence professionals.”

Part 2 – How Neocons Push for War by Cooking the Books

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An 1898 cartoon features newspaper publishers Joseph Pulitzer and William Randolph Hearst dressed as a cartoon character of the day, a satire of their papers’ role in drumming up U.S. public opinion for war by Leon Barritt (Wikimedia))https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:PulitzerHearstWarYellowKids.jpg

Most Americans outside of Washington policy circles don’t know about Team B, where it came from or what it did, nor are they aware of its roots in the Fourth International, the Trotskyist branch of the Communist International. Lawrence J. Korb, a Senior Fellow at the Center for American Progress and assistant secretary of defense from 1981 to 1985 attributed the intelligence failure represented by 9/11 to Team B and had this to say about it in a 2004 article for the Los Angeles Times.

“The roots of the problem go back to May 6, 1976, when the director of Central Intelligence, George H.W. Bush, created the first Team B… The concept of a “competitive analysis” of the data done by an alternative team had been opposed by William Colby, Bush’s predecessor as CIA director and a career professional… Although the Team B report contained little factual data it was enthusiastically received by conservative groups such as the Committee on the Present Danger. But the report turned out to be grossly inaccurate… Team B was right about one thing. The CIA estimate was indeed flawed. But it was flawed in the other direction.”

Korb went on to explain that a 1978 Senate Select Committee on Intelligence review concluded; “that the selection of Team B members had yielded a flawed composition of political views and biases. And a 1989 review concluded that the Soviet threat had been ‘substantially overestimated’ in the CIA’s annual intelligence estimates… Still, the failure of Team B in 1976 did not deter the hard-liners from challenging the CIA’s judgments for the next three decades.”

Now long forgotten, the origins of the Team B “problem” actually stretched back to the radical political views and biases of James Burnham, his association with the Communist Revolutionary Leon Trotsky and the creation of powerful eastern establishment ad hoc groups; the Committee on the Present Danger and the American Security Council. From the outset of the Cold War in the late 1940s an odd coalition of ex-Trotskyist radicals and right wing business associations had lobbied heavily for big military budgets, advanced weapons systems and aggressive action to confront Soviet Communism. Vietnam was intended to prove the brilliance of their theories, but as described by author Fred Kaplan, “Vietnam brought out the dark side of nearly everyone inside America’s national security machine. And it exposed something seamy and disturbing about the very enterprise of the defense intellectuals. It revealed that the concept of force underlying all their formulations and scenarios was an abstraction, practically useless as a guide to action.” (Wizards of Armageddon page. 336) Kaplan ends by writing “The disillusionment for some became nearly total.” Vietnam represented more than just a strategic defeat for America’s defense intellectuals; it represented a conceptual failure in the half-century battle to contain Soviet-style Communism but for Team B, that disillusionment represented the opportunity of a lifetime.

Trotskyist Intellectuals become The New York Intellectuals become Defense Intellectuals

Populated by an inbred class of former Trotskyist intellectuals, the Team B approach represented a radical transformation of America’s national security bureaucracy into a new kind of elitist cult. In the 1960s Robert McNamara’s numbers and statistics justified bad policy decisions, now personal agendas and ethnic grudges would turn American foreign policy into an ideological crusade. Today those in control of that crusade fight desperately to maintain their grip, but only by de-encrypting the evolution of this secret “double government” can anyone understand America’s unrelenting post-Vietnam drift into despotism over the last 40 years.

Rooted in what can only be described as cult thinking, the Team B experiment tore down what was left of the CIA’s pre-Vietnam professional objectivity by subjecting it to politicization. Earlier in the decade, the CIA’s Office of Strategic Research (OSR) had been pressured by Nixon and Kissinger to corrupt their analysis to justify increased defense spending but the Team B’s ideological focus and partisan makeup so exaggerated the threat, the process could never return to normal.

The campaign was driven by the Russophobic neoconservative cabal which included Paul Wolfowitz, Richard Pipes, Richard Perle and a handful of old anti-Soviet hardliners like Paul Nitze and General Danny Graham. It began with a 1974 article in the Wall Street Journal by the famed nuclear strategist and former Trotskyist Albert Wohlstetter decrying America’s supposed nuclear vulnerability. It ended 2 years later with a ritualistic bloodletting at the CIA, signaling that ideology and not fact-based analysis had gained an exclusive hold on America’s bureaucracy.

The ideology referred to as Neoconservatism can claim many godfathers if not godmothers. Roberta Wohlstetter’s reputation as one of RAND’s preeminent Cold Warriors was equal to her husband’s. The couple’s infamous parties at their Santa Monica home acted as a kind of initiation rite for the rising class of “defense intellectual”. But the title of founding-father might best be applied to James Burnham. A convert from Communist revolutionary Leon Trotsky’s inner circle, Burnham’s 1941, The Managerial Revolution and 1943’s The Machiavellians: Defenders of Freedom championed the anti-democratic takeover then occurring in Nazi Germany and Fascist Italy while in1945’s Lenin’s Heir he switched his admiration, if only tongue in cheek, from Trotsky to Stalin.

George Orwell criticized Burnham’s cynical elitist vision in his 1946 essay Second Thoughts on James Burnham, writing “What Burnham is mainly concerned to show [in The Machiavellians] is that a democratic society has never existed and, so far as we can see, never will exist. Society is of its nature oligarchical, and the power of the oligarchy always rests upon force and fraud… Power can sometimes be won and maintained without violence, but never without fraud.”

Orwell is said to have modelled his novel 1984 on Burnham’s vision of the coming totalitarian state which he described as “a new kind of society, neither capitalist nor Socialist, and probably based upon slavery.”

As a Princeton and Oxford educated English scholar (one of his professor’s at Balliol College was J.R.R Tolkien) Burnham landed a position as a writer and an instructor in the philosophy department at New York University just in time for the 1929 Wall Street crash. Although initially uninterested in politics and hostile to Marxism, by 1931Burnham had become radicalized by the Great Depression and alongside fellow NYU philosophy instructor Sidney Hook, drawn to Marxism.

Burnham found Trotsky’s use of “dialectical materialism” to explain the interplay between the human and the historical forces in his History of the Russian Revolution to be brilliant. His subsequent review of Trotsky’s book would bring the two men together and begin for Burnham a six year odyssey through America’s Communist left that would in this strange saga, ultimately transform him into the agent of its destruction.

As founder of the Red Army and a firebrand Marxist, Trotsky had dedicated his life to the spread of a worldwide Communist revolution. Stalin opposed Trotsky’s views as too ambitious and the power struggle that followed Lenin’s death splintered the party. By their very nature the Trotskyists were expert at infighting, infiltration and disruption. Burnham reveled in his role as a Trotskyist intellectual and the endless debates over the fundamental principle of Communism (dialectical materialism) behind Trotsky’s crusade. The Communist Manifesto approved the tactic of subverting larger and more populist political parties (entrism) and following Trotsky’s expulsion from the Communist party in November 1927, his followers exploited it. The most well-known example of entrism was the so called “French Turn” when in 1934 the French Trotskyists entered the much larger French Socialist Party the SFIO with the intention of winning over the more militant elements to their side.

That same year the American followers of Trotsky in the Communist League of America, the CLA did a French turn on the American Workers Party, the AWP in a move that elevated the AWP’s James Burnham into the role of a Trotsky lieutenant and chief advisor.

Burnham liked the toughness of the Bolsheviks and despised the weakness of the liberals. According to his biographer Daniel Kelly, “He took great pride in what he saw as its hard-headed view of the world in contrast to philosophies rooted in ‘dreams and illusions.’” He also delighted in the tactics of infiltrating and subverting other leftist parties and in 1935 “fought tirelessly for the French turn” of another and far larger Socialist Party the SP some twenty thousand strong. The Trotskyists intended “to capture its left wing and its youth division, the Young People’s Socialist League (YPSL),” Kelly writes “and take the converts with them when they left.”

Burnham remained a “Trotskyist Intellectual” from 1934 until 1940. But although he labored six years for the party, it was said of him that he was never of the party and as the new decade began he renounced both Trotsky and “the ‘philosophy of Marxism’ dialectical materialism” altogether. He summed up his feelings in a letter of resignation on May 21, 1940. “Of the most important beliefs, which have been associated with the Marxist Movement, whether in its reformist, Leninist, Stalinist or Trotskyist variants, there is virtually none which I accept in its traditional form. I regard these beliefs as either false or obsolete or meaningless; or in a few cases, as at best true only in a form so restricted and modified as no longer properly to be called Marxist.”

In 1976 Burnham wrote to a legendary secret agent whom biographer Kelly referred to as “the British political analyst Brian Crozier” that he had never swallowed dialectical materialism or the ideology of Marxism but was merely being pragmatic given the rise of Hitler and the Depression.

But given the influential role Burnham would come to play in creating the new revolutionary class of neoconservatives, and their central role in using Trotsky’s tactics to lobby against any relationship with the Soviet Union, it’s hard to believe Burnham’s involvement with Trotsky’s Fourth International was only an intellectual exercise in pragmatism

Part 3 – How the CIA Created a Fake Western Reality for ‘Unconventional Warfare’

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“The Evil Spirits of the Modern Day Press”. Puck US magazine 1888 https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Puck112188c.jpg ) [Public domain] via Wikimedia Commons

The odd, psychologically conflicted and politically divisive ideology referred to as Neoconservatism can claim many godfathers. Irving Kristol, father of William Kristol, Albert Wohlstetter, Daniel Bell, Norman Podhoretz and Sidney Hook come to mind and there are many others. But in both theory and its practice the title of founding-father of the neoconservative agenda of endless warfare that rules the thinking of America’s defense and foreign policies today might best be applied to James Burnham.

His writings in the 1930s provided a refined Oxford intellectual’s gloss to the Socialist Workers party and as a close advisor to Communist revolutionary Leon Trotsky and his Fourth International he learned the tactics and strategies of infiltration and political subversion first hand. Burnham reveled in his role as a “Trotskyist intellectual” pulling dirty tricks on his political foes in competing Marxist movements by turning their loyalties and looting their best talent.

Burnham renounced his allegiance to Trotsky and Marxism in all its forms in1940 but he would take their tactics and strategies for infiltration and subversion with him and would turn their method of dialectical materialism against them. His 1941book The Managerial Revolution would bring him fame and fortune and establish him as an astute, if not exactly accurate political prophet chronicling the rise of a new class of technocratic elite. His next book The Machiavellians would confirm his movement away from Marxist idealism to a very cynical and often cruel realism with his belief in the inevitable failure of democracy and the rise of the oligarch. In 1943 he would put it all to use in a memo for the U.S. Office of Strategic Services the OSS in which his Trotskyist anti-Stalinism would find its way into the agency’s thinking. And in his 1947 book The Struggle for the World, Burnham would expand his confrontational/adversarial dialectic toward the Soviet Union into a permanent, apocalyptic policy of endless war. By 1947 James Burnham’s transformation from Communist radical to New World Order American conservative was complete. His Struggle for the World had done a French Turn on Trotsky’s permanent Communist revolution and turned it into a permanent battle plan for a global American empire. All that was needed to complete Burnham’s dialectic was a permanent enemy and that would require a sophisticated psychological campaign to keep the hatred of Russia alive for generations.

The rise of the Machiavellians

In 1939 Sidney Hook, Burnham’s colleague at NYU and fellow Marxist philosopher had helped to found an anti-Stalinist Committee for Cultural Freedom as part of a campaign against Moscow. During the war Hook too had abandoned Marxism and like Burnham somehow found himself in the warm embrace of the right-wing of America’s intelligence community during and after World War II. Hook was viewed by the Communist Party as a traitor and “counter-revolutionary reptile” for his activities and by 1942 was informing on his fellow comrades to the FBI.

Selling impoverished and dispossessed European elites on the virtues of American culture was essential to building America’s empire after the war and Burnham’s early writings proved the inspiration from which a new counter-culture of “Freedom” would be built. As veterans of internecine Trotskyist warfare both Burnham and Hook were practiced at the arts of infiltration and subversion and with Burnham’s The Machiavellians: Defenders of Freedom as their blueprint they set out to color anything the Soviets did or said with dark intent.

As Burnham articulated clearly in his Machiavellians, his version of Freedom meant anything but intellectual freedom or those freedoms defined by America’s Constitution. What it really meant was conformity and submission. Burnham’s Freedom only applied to those intellectuals (the Machiavellians) willing to tell people the hard truth about the unpopular political realities they faced. These were the realities that would usher in a brave new world of the managerial class who would set about denying Americans the very democracy they thought they already owned. As Orwell observed about Burnham’s Machiavellian beliefs in his 1946 Second Thoughts, “Power can sometimes be won or maintained without violence, but never without fraud, because it is necessary to use the masses…”

By 1949 the CIA was actively in the business of defrauding the masses by secretly supporting the so called non-Communist left and behaving as if it was just a spontaneous outgrowth of a free society. By turning the left to the service of its expanding empire the CIA was applying a French Turn of its own by picking the best and the brightest and the creation of the National Security State in 1947 institutionalized it. Assisted by Britain’s Information Research Department the IRD, the CIA recruited key former Soviet disinformation agents trained before the war who had managed non-Communist front groups for Moscow and put them to work. As Frances Stoner Saunders writes in her book, The Cultural Cold War, “these former propagandists for the Soviets were recycled, bleached of the stain of Communism, embraced by government strategists who saw in their conversion an irresistible opportunity to sabotage the Soviet propaganda machine which they had once oiled.”

By its own admission the CIA’s strategy of promoting the non-Communist left would become the theoretical foundation of the Agency’s political operations against Communism for over the next two decades. But the no holds barred cultural war against Soviet Communism began in earnest in March 1949 when a group of 800 prominent literary and artistic figures gathered at New York’s Waldorf Astoria Hotel for a Soviet sponsored “Cultural and Scientific” conference that would sue for peace. Both Sydney Hook and James Burnham were already actively involved in enlisting recruits to counter Moscow’s Communist Information Bureau’s (Cominform) efforts to influence Western Opinion. But the Waldorf conference gave them an opportunity for dirty tricks they could only have prayed for.

Demonstrators organized by a right-wing coalition of Catholic groups and the American legion heckled the guests as they arrived. Catholic nuns knelt in prayer for the souls of the Communist atheists in attendance. Gathered upstairs in a tenth floor bridal suite a gang of ex-Trotskyists and Communists led by Hook intercepted the conference’s mail, doctored official press releases and published pamphlets challenging speakers to admit their Communist past.

In the end the entire conference became a twisted theatre of the absurd and Hook and Burnham would use it to sell Frank Wisner at the CIA’s Office of Policy Coordination on taking the show on the road.

The Congress for Cultural Freedom: By Hook or by Crook

Drawing on the untapped power of the Fourth International, the coming out party came on June 26, 1950 at the Titania Palace in occupied Berlin. Named for Hook’s 1939 concept for a cultural committee, The Congress for Cultural Freedom’s fourteen-point “Freedom Manifesto” was to identify the West with freedom. And since everything about the West was said to be free, free, free then it went without saying everything about the Soviet Union wasn’t.

Organized by Burnham and Hook, the American delegation represented a who’s who of America’s post war intellectuals. Tickets to Berlin were paid for by Wisner’s Office of Policy Coordination through front organizations as well as the Department of State which helped arrange travel, expenses and publicity. According to CIA Historian Michael Warner the conference’s sponsor’s considered it money well spent with one Defense Department representative calling it “unconventional warfare at its best.”

Burnham functioned as a critical connection between Wisner’s office and the intelligentsia moving from the extreme left to the extreme right with ease. Burnham found the Congress to be a place to inveigh not just against Communism but against the non-communist left as well and left many wondering whether his views weren’t as dangerous to liberal democracy as Communism. According to Frances Stoner Saunders, members of the British delegation found the rhetoric coming out of the Congress to be a deeply troubling sign of things to come. “Hugh Trevor-Roper was appalled by the provocative tone… ‘There was a speech by Franz Borkenau which was very violent and indeed almost hysterical. He spoke in German and I regret to say that as I listened and I heard the baying voices of approval from the huge audiences, I felt, well, these are the same people who seven years ago were probably baying in the same way to similar German denunciations of Communism coming from Dr. Goebbels in the Sports Palast. And I felt, well, what sort of people are we identifying with? That was the greatest shock to me. There was a moment during the Congress when I felt that we were being invited to summon up Beelzebub in order to defeat Stalin.’”

The Congress for Cultural Freedom didn’t need Beelzebub, it already had him in the form of Burnham, Hook and Wisner and by 1952 the party was just getting started. Burnham worked overtime for Wisner legitimizing the Congress as a platform for the Machiavellians alongside ex-Communists and even Nazis, including SS General Reinhard Gehlen and his German Army intelligence unit which had been brought into the CIA after the war, intact. E. Howard Hunt, Watergate “plumber” famous as a CIA dirty trickster remembered Burnham in his memoirs, “Burnham was a consultant to OPC on virtually every subject of interest to our organization… He had extensive contacts in Europe and, by virtue of his Trotskyite background, was something of an authority on domestic and foreign Communist parties and front organizations.”

In 1953 Burnham was called upon again by Wisner to reach beyond Communism to help overthrow the democratically elected Mohammed Mossadegh in Teheran apparently because Wisner thought the plan needed “a touch of Machiavelli.” But Burnham’s greatest contribution as a Machiavellian was yet to come. His book The Machiavellians: Defenders of Freedom would become the CIA’s manual for displacing Western culture with an alternative doctrine for endless conflict in a world of oligarchs and in the end open the gates to an Inferno from which there would be no return.

Part 4 – The Final Stage of the Machiavellian Elites’ Takeover of America

From Trotsky to Burnham, from Burnham to Machiavelli and Machiavelli to neoconservatism, the circle of British imperialism closes

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Cover of the 1550 edition of Machiavelli’s Il Principe and La Vita di Castruccio Castracani da Lucca.

public domain wiki commons https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Machiavelli_Principe_Cover_Page.jpg

The recent assertion by the Trump White House that Damascus and Moscow released “false narratives” to mislead the world about the April 4 Sarin gas attack in Khan Shaykhun, Syria is a dangerous next step in the “fake news” propaganda war launched in the final days of the Obama administration. It is a step whose deep roots in Communist Trotsky’s Fourth International must be understood before deciding whether American democracy can be reclaimed.

Muddying the waters of accountability in a way not seen since Senator Joe McCarthy at the height of the Red Scare in the 1950s, the “Countering Disinformation and Propaganda Act” signed into law without fanfare by Obama in December 2016 officially authorized a government censorship bureaucracy comparable only to George Orwell’s fictional Ministry of Truth in his novel 1984. Referred to as “The Global Engagement Center,” the official purpose of this new bureaucracy is to “recognize, understand, expose, and counter foreign state and non-state propaganda and disinformation efforts aimed at undermining United States national security interests.” The real purpose of this Orwellian nightmare is to cook the books on anything that challenges Washington’s neoconservative pro war narrative and to intimidate, harass or jail anyone who tries. As has already been demonstrated by President Trump’s firing of Tomahawk missiles at a Syrian government airbase, it is a recipe for a world war and like it or not, that war has already begun.

This latest attack on Russia’s supposed false narrative takes us right back to 1953 and the beginnings of the cultural war between East and West. Its roots are tied to the Congress for Cultural Freedom, to James Burnham’s pivot from Trotsky’s Fourth International to right-wing conservatism and to the rise of the neoconservative Machiavellians as a political force. As James Burnham’s The Struggle for the World stressed, the Third World War had already begun with the 1944 Communist-led Greek sailors’ revolt. In Burnham’s Manichean thinking the West was under siege. George Kennan’s Cold War policy of containment was no different than Neville Chamberlain’s policy of appeasement. Détente with the Soviet Union amounted to surrender. Peace was only a disguise for war and that war would be fought with politics, subversion, terrorism and psychological warfare. Soviet influence had to be rolled back wherever possible. That meant subverting the Soviet Union and its proxies and when necessary, subverting Western democracies as well.

The true irony of today’s late stage efforts by Washington to monopolize “truth” and attack alternate narratives isn’t just in its blatant contempt for genuine free speech. The real irony is that the entire “Freedom Manifesto” employed by the United States and Britain since World War II was never free at all; but a concoction of the CIA’s Psychological Strategy Board’s (PSB) comprehensive psychological warfare program waged on friend and foe alike.

The CIA would come to view the entire program beginning with the 1950 Berlin conference to be a landmark in the Cold War not just for solidifying the CIA’s control over the non-Communist left and the West’s “free” intellectuals, but for enabling the CIA to secretly disenfranchise Europeans and Americans from their own political culture in such a way they would never really know it.

As historian Christopher Lasch wrote in 1969 of the CIA’s cooptation of the American left, “The modern state… is an engine of propaganda, alternately manufacturing crises and claiming to be the only instrument that can effectively deal with them. This propaganda, in order to be successful, demands the cooperation of writers, teachers, and artists not as paid propagandists or state-censored time-servers but as ‘free’ intellectuals capable of policing their own jurisdictions and of enforcing acceptable standards of responsibility within the various intellectual professions.”

Key to turning these “free” intellectuals against their own interests was the CIA’s doctrinal program for Western cultural transformation contained in the document PSB D-33/2. PSB D-33/2 foretells of a “long-term intellectual movement, to: break down world-wide doctrinaire thought patterns” while “creating confusion, doubt and loss of confidence” in order to “weaken objectively the intellectual appeal of neutralism and to predispose its adherents towards the spirit of the West;” to “predispose local elites to the philosophy held by the planners,” while employing local elites “would help to disguise the American origin of the effort so that it appears to be a native development.”

While declaring itself as an antidote to Communist totalitarianism, one internal critic of the Program, PSB officer Charles Burton Marshall, viewed PSB D-33/2 itself as frighteningly totalitarian, interposing “a wide doctrinal system” that “accepts uniformity as a substitute for diversity,” embracing “all fields of human thought – all fields of intellectual interests, from anthropology and artistic creations to sociology and scientific methodology;” concluding, “That is just about as totalitarian as one can get.”

Burnham’s Machiavellian elitism lurks in every shadow of the document. As recounted in Frances Stoner Saunder’s The Cultural Cold War, “Marshall also took issue with the PSB’s reliance on ‘non-rational social theories’ which emphasized the role of an elite ‘in the manner reminiscent of Pareto, Sorel, Mussolini and so on.’ Weren’t these the models used by James Burnham in his book the Machiavellians? Perhaps there was a copy usefully to hand when PSB D-33/2 was being drafted. More likely, James Burnham himself was usefully to hand.”

Burnham was more than just at hand when it came to secretly implanting a fascist philosophy of extreme elitism into America’s Cold War orthodoxy. With The Machiavellians, Burnham had composed the manual that forged the old Trotskyist left together with a right-wing Anglo/American elite. The political offspring of that volatile union would be called neoconservatism whose overt mission would be to roll back Russian/Soviet influence everywhere. Its covert mission would be to reassert a British cultural dominance over the emerging Anglo/American Empire and maintain it through propaganda.

Hard at work on that task since 1946 was the secret Information Research Department of the British and Commonwealth Foreign Office known as the IRD.

Rarely spoken of in the context of CIA-funded secret operations, the IRD served as a covert anti-Communist propaganda unit from 1946 until 1977. According to Paul Lashmar and James Oliver, authors of Britain’s Secret Propaganda War, “the vast IRD enterprise had one sole aim: To spread its ceaseless propaganda output (i.e. a mixture of outright lies and distorted facts) among top-ranking journalists who worked for major agencies and magazines, including Reuters and the BBC, as well as every other available channel. It worked abroad to discredit communist parties in Western Europe which might gain a share of power by entirely democratic means, and at home to discredit the British Left”.

IRD was to become a self-fulfilling disinformation machine for the far-right-wing of the international intelligence elite, at once offering fabricated and distorted information to “independent” news outlets and then using the laundered story as “proof” of the false story’s validity. One such front enterprise established with CIA money was Forum World Features, operated at one time by Burnham acolyte Brian Rossiter Crozier. Described by Burnham’s biographer Daniel Kelly as a “British political analyst” in reality the legendary Brian Crozier functioned for over fifty years as one of Britain’s top propagandists and secret agents.

If anyone today is shocked by the biased, one-sided, xenophobic rush to judgement alleging Russian influence over the 2016 presidential election, they need look no further than to Brian Crozier’s closet for the blueprints. As we were told outright by an American military officer during the first war in Afghanistan in 1982, the U.S. didn’t need “proof the Soviets used poison gas” and they don’t need proof against Russia now. Crozier might best be described as a daydream believer, a dangerous imperialist who acts out his dreams with open eyes. From the beginning of the Cold War until his death in 2012 Crozier and his protégé Robert Moss propagandized on behalf of military dictators Francisco Franco and Augusto Pinochet, organized private intelligence organizations to destabilize governments in the Middle East, Asia, Latin America and Africa and worked to delegitimize politicians in Europe and Britain viewed as insufficiently anti-Communist. The mandate of his Institute for the Study of Conflict (ISC) set up in 1970 was to expose the supposed KGB campaign of worldwide subversion and put out stories smearing anyone who questioned it as a dupe, a traitor or Communist spy. Crozier regarded The Machiavellians as a major formative influence in his own intellectual development, and wrote in 1976 “indeed it was this book above all others that first taught me how [emphasis Crozier] to think about politics”. The key to Crozier’s thinking was Burnham’s distinction between the “formal” meaning of political speech and the “real”, a concept which was of course grasped only by elites. In a 1976 article Crozier marveled at how Burnham’s understanding of politics had spanned 600 years and how the use of “the formal” to conceal “the real” was no different today than when used by Dante Alighieri’s “presumably enlightened Medieval mind.” “The point is as valid now as it was in ancient times and in the Florentine Middle Ages, or in 1943. Overwhelmingly, political writers and speakers still use Dante’s method. Depending on the degree of obfuscation required (either by circumstances or the person’s character), the divorce between formal and real meaning is more of less absolute.”

But Crozier was more than just a strategic thinker. Crozier was a high level covert political agent who put Burnham’s talent for obfuscation and his Fourth International experience to use to undermine détente and set the stage for rolling back the Soviet Union.

In a secret meeting at a City of London bank in February 1977 he even patented a private sector operational intelligence organization known at the 6th International (6I) to pick up where Burnham left off; politicizing and of course privatizing many of the dirty tricks the CIA and other intelligence services could no longer be caught doing. As he explained in his memoir Free Agent, the name 6I was chosen “Because the Fourth International split. The Fourth International was the Trotskyist one, and when it split, this meant that, on paper there were five Internationals. In the numbers game, we would constitute the Sixth International, or ‘6I’”.

Croziers cooperation with numerous “able and diligent Congressional staffers” as well as “the remarkable General Vernon (‘Dick’) Walters, recently retired as Deputy Director of Central Intelligence,..” cemented the rise of the neoconservatives. When Carter caved in to the Team B and his neoconservative National Security Advisor Zbigniew Brzezinski’s plot to lure the Soviets and into their own Vietnam in Afghanistan it fulfilled Burnham’s mission and delivered the world to the Machiavellians without anyone being the wiser. As George Orwell wrote in his Second Thoughts on James Burnham, “What Burnham is mainly concerned to show [in The Machiavellians] is that a democratic society has never existed and, so far as we can see, never will exist. Society is of its nature oligarchical, and the power of the oligarchy always rests upon force and fraud… Power can sometimes be won and maintained without violence, but never without fraud.”

Today Burnham’s use of Dante’s political Treatise, De Monarchia to explain his Medieval understanding of politics might best be swapped for Dante’s Divine Comedy, a paranoid comedy of errors in which the door to hell swings open to one and all, including the elites regardless of their status. Or as they say in Hell, Lasciate ogne speranza, voi ch’intrate. Abandon hope all ye who enter here.

Paul Fitzgerald and Elizabeth Gould are the authors of Invisible History: Afghanistan’s Untold Story, Crossing Zero The AfPak War at the Turning Point of American Empire and The Voice. Visit their websites at invisiblehistory and grailwerk

sources:

Part 1: American Imperialism Leads the World Into Dante’s Vision of Hell
Part 2: How Neocons Push for War by Cooking the Books
Part 3: How the CIA Created a Fake Western Reality for ‘Unconventional Warfare’
Part 4 – The Final Stage of the Machiavellian Elites’ Takeover of America

Trump Fires FBI Boss James Comey – It’s About Time…

By Moon Of Alabama

May 10, 2017 “Information Clearing House” –  “Moon Of Alabama” –  President Trump dismissed the Director of the FBI James Comey on recommendation of the Deputy Attorney General, who had served under Obama, and the Attorney General. The dismissal and the recommendation memos can be read here.

Comey is accused of usurping the Attorney General’s authority on several occasions. In July 2016 Comey decided and publicly announced the closing of the Clinton email-investigations without a recommendation of prosecution. He publicly announced the reopening of the investigation in October only to close it again a few days later.

At the first closing of the investigation Comey held a press conference and said:

“our judgment is that no reasonable prosecutor would bring such a case.”

That, by far, exceeded his competency, Since when can a police officer decide how “reasonable” a prosecutor may or may not be, and make public announcements about that? Clinton’s running of a private email server broke several laws. Anyone but she would have been prosecuted at least for breaching secrecy and security regulations.

It is not the job of the police to decide about prosecutions. The police is an investigating agent of the public prosecutors office. It can make recommendations about prosecutions but not decide about them. Recommendations are to be kept confidential until they are decided upon by the relevant authority – the prosecutor.

The formal dismissal of Comey is, in my view, the right thing to do. It should have been done earlier.

But the political dimension of the dismissal is not about the Clinton email affair at all. It is about the “Russia interfered with the election” nonsense Clinton invented as excuse for her self-inflicted loss of the vote. The whole anti-Trump/anti-Russia campaign run by neocons and “Resistance” democrats, is designed to block the foreign policy – detente with Russia – for which Trump was elected. The anti-Russia inquisition is dangerous groupthink.

There is no evidence – none at all – that Russia “interfered” with the U.S. election. There is no evidence – none at all – that Russia colluded with the Trump campaign. The Democratic Senator Dianna Feinstein, who sits on the Judiciary Committee as well as the Select Committee on Intelligence, recently confirmed that publicly (vid) immediately after she had again been briefed by the CIA:

Blitzer mentioned that Feinstein and other colleagues from the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence had visited CIA headquarters on Tuesday to be briefed on the investigation. He then asked Feinstein whether she had evidence, without disclosing any classified information, that there was collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia during the 2016 presidential campaign.

“Not at this time,” Feinstein said.

Blitzer was stunned.

There is no evidence. But the FBI Director keeps an investigation open on the issue and talks about it. He does not make any recommendation to the prosecutors. After six month of investigation the FBI has no evidence for any of the rumors about Russian interference that are thrown around. It should have closed the case with a clear recommendation not to prosecute the issue. (That the former Trump NSA General Flynn once took money for a gig at Russia Today is a none issue. He took ten times as much money from Turkey but no one seems to be interested in the background of that deal.)

That Comey kept the case open was political interference from his side. Hearings and public rumors about the case blocked the political calendar. Instead of following the facts, and deciding based upon them, he was running a political campaign by himself. John Edgar Hoover demonstrated how much damage an unrestricted FBI director on political witch hunt can cause. No such dictatorial power should ever again be vested in that position and in a person who is prone to exceed his competencies.

The Clinton partisans and the Russia hawks will howl about Trump’s decision for a day or two. They fear losing their current hobby horse. They will soon find a different one.

The views expressed in this article are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Information Clearing House.

 

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Edward Snowden @Snowden

This FBI Director has sought for years to jail me on account of my political activities. If I can oppose his firing, so can you. https://twitter.com/Snowden/status/862067649748119553 …

2:17 AM – 10 May 2017

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Washington Soap Opera Erupts Over FBI Director’s Firing

If you thought all the hysteria over alleged Russian interference in the US election had ended for good when Trump launched his 59 Tomahawk missiles at Syria, guess again. It’s back now, and with a vengeance.

Yesterday President Trump fired James Comey. One could argue that that the FBI director’s public pronouncements last year in regard to the Clinton email scandal were clumsy and that his credibility had been damaged as a result, but accusations are now flying that the dismissal was aimed at quashing an alleged Comey investigation into supposed Russian meddling in the election.

“To put it mildly, the optics of firing Comey are terrible,” writes James Hohmann in the Washington Post. “Trump looks like he does not actually want to get to the bottom of Russia’s interference in the U.S. election and the potential wrongdoing of his own staffers.”

Neocon pundit Max Boot is even hinting at the possibility of a Trump impeachment in 2018.

Prediction: If Democrats take control of Congress in 2018, the firing of Comey will form one of the articles of impeachment.

 Many members of Congress, including some Republicans, are calling for a special prosecutor to investigate the Trump administration. One is Rep. Barbara Comstock (R-VA):

Sen. Michael Bennett (D-CO):

Comey’s firing raises many questions. One thing is clear: an independent special prosecutor is necessary to investigate Russian connections.

Sen. Brian Schatz (D-HI)

We are in a full-fledged constitutional crisis.

Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY)

No more excuses: We need an independent special prosecutor to investigate the Trump Administration’s ties to Russia.

Many others are posting tweets galore, while Politico is portraying a seemingly mentally ill Trump “fuming” about the Russian investigation and who even “would sometimes scream at television clips about the probe.”

And then there is the ever adorable “liberal” Elizabeth Warren, who endorsed Hillary Clinton while making no secret of her detestation of Trump–even back in the old days when the future president was championing the working class and talking about ending US wars in the Middle East.

It’s time for Congress to get their heads out of the sand. @realDonaldTrump cannot pick the person to continue this critical investigation.

 What is astounding (though not surprising) in all this, is that you will be hard pressed to find, from any of these people, any  acknowledgement of the US government’s long history of interfering in the elections, and even overthrowing the governments, of other countries. Was it not just three years ago that the US overthrew the government of Ukraine? You would not know it from listening to their soundbites on the news or reading their tweets.

You also will not hear any of them acknowledge that whatever influence Russia has upon US elections it is minuscule compared with that wielded by Israel.

Official Washington is truly living in an alternate reality. These people are like actors on a soap opera.

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