Saturday, April 16, 2016

What 60 Minutes Left Out of Saudi 9/11 Connection Report

The 9/11 Conspiracy: Did Bush/Cheney Create a Culture of Not Wanting to Know? - Sen. Bob Graham on Reality Asserts Itself pt4 


On RAI with Paul Jay, Senator Bob Graham says there was a pervasive pattern in police and intelligence agencies:

"You don't have everybody moving in the same direction without there being a head coach somewhere who was giving them instructions as to where he wants them to move"

Why Must Muammar Die?

Exposing the Libyan Agenda: a Closer Look at Hillary’s Emails

by Ellen Brown - CounterPunch

March 14, 2016

The brief visit of then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton to Libya in October 2011 was referred to by the media as a “victory lap.”

“We came, we saw, he died!” she crowed in a CBS video interview on hearing of the capture and brutal murder of Libyan leader Muammar el-Qaddafi.

But the victory lap, write Scott Shane and Jo Becker in the New York Times, was premature. Libya was relegated to the back burner by the State Department, “as the country dissolved into chaos, leading to a civil war that would destabilize the region, fueling the refugee crisis in Europe and allowing the Islamic State to establish a Libyan haven that the United States is now desperately trying to contain.”

US-NATO intervention was allegedly undertaken on humanitarian grounds, after reports of mass atrocities; but human rights organizations questioned the claims after finding a lack of evidence. Today, however, verifiable atrocities are occurring. As Dan Kovalik wrote in the Huffington Post, “the human rights situation in Libya is a disaster, as ‘thousands of detainees [including children] languish in prisons without proper judicial review,’ and ‘kidnappings and targeted killings are rampant’.”

Before 2011, Libya had achieved economic independence, with its own water, its own food, its own oil, its own money, and its own state-owned bank. It had arisen under Qaddafi from one of the poorest of countries to the richest in Africa. Education and medical treatment were free; having a home was considered a human right; and Libyans participated in an original system of local democracy. The country boasted the world’s largest irrigation system, the Great Man-made River project, which brought water from the desert to the cities and coastal areas; and Qaddafi was embarking on a program to spread this model throughout Africa.

But that was before US-NATO forces bombed the irrigation system and wreaked havoc on the country. Today the situation is so dire that President Obama has asked his advisors to draw up options including a new military front in Libya, and the Defense Department is reportedly standing ready with “the full spectrum of military operations required.”

The Secretary of State’s victory lap was indeed premature, if what we’re talking about is the officially stated goal of humanitarian intervention. But her newly-released emails reveal another agenda behind the Libyan war; and this one, it seems, was achieved.

Mission Accomplished?

Of the 3,000 emails released from Hillary Clinton’s private email server in late December 2015, about a third were from her close confidante Sidney Blumenthal, the attorney who defended her husband in the Monica Lewinsky case. One of these emails, dated April 2, 2011, reads in part:

Qaddafi’s government holds 143 tons of gold, and a similar amount in silver . . . . This gold was accumulated prior to the current rebellion and was intended to be used to establish a pan-African currency based on the Libyan golden Dinar. This plan was designed to provide the Francophone African Countries with an alternative to the French franc (CFA).

In a “source comment,” the original declassified email adds:

According to knowledgeable individuals this quantity of gold and silver is valued at more than $7 billion. French intelligence officers discovered this plan shortly after the current rebellion began, and this was one of the factors that influenced President Nicolas Sarkozy’s decision to commit France to the attack on Libya. According to these individuals Sarkozy’s plans are driven by the following issues:

1 A desire to gain a greater share of Libya oil production,

2 Increase French influence in North Africa,

3 Improve his internal political situation in France,

4 Provide the French military with an opportunity to reassert its position in the world,

5 Address the concern of his advisors over Qaddafi’s long term plans to supplant France as the dominant power in Francophone Africa

Conspicuously absent is any mention of humanitarian concerns. The objectives are money, power and oil.

Other explosive confirmations in the newly-published emails are detailed by investigative journalist Robert Parry. They include admissions of rebel war crimes, of special ops trainers inside Libya from nearly the start of protests, and of Al Qaeda embedded in the US-backed opposition. Key propaganda themes for violent intervention are acknowledged to be mere rumors. Parry suggests they may have originated with Blumenthal himself. They include the bizarre claim that Qaddafi had a “rape policy” involving passing Viagra out to his troops, a charge later raised by UN Ambassador Susan Rice in a UN presentation. Parry asks rhetorically:

So do you think it would it be easier for the Obama administration to rally American support behind this “regime change” by explaining how the French wanted to steal Libya’s wealth and maintain French neocolonial influence over Africa – or would Americans respond better to propaganda themes about Gaddafi passing out Viagra to his troops so they could rape more women while his snipers targeted innocent children? Bingo!

Toppling the Global Financial Scheme

Qaddafi’s threatened attempt to establish an independent African currency was not taken lightly by Western interests. In 2011, Sarkozy reportedly called the Libyan leader a threat to the financial security of the world. How could this tiny country of six million people pose such a threat? First some background.

It is banks, not governments, that create most of the money in Western economies, as the Bank of England recently acknowledged. This has been going on for centuries, through the process called “fractional reserve” lending. Originally, the reserves were in gold. In 1933, President Franklin Roosevelt replaced gold domestically with central bank-created reserves, but gold remained the reserve currency internationally.

In 1944, the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank were created in Bretton Woods, New Hampshire, to unify this bank-created money system globally. An IMF ruling said that no paper money could have gold backing. A money supply created privately as debt at interest requires a continual supply of debtors; and over the next half century, most developing countries wound up in debt to the IMF. The loans came with strings attached, including “structural adjustment” policies involving austerity measures and privatization of public assets.

After 1944, the US dollar traded interchangeably with gold as global reserve currency. When the US was no longer able to maintain the dollar’s gold backing, in the 1970s it made a deal with OPEC to “back” the dollar with oil, creating the “petro-dollar.” Oil would be sold only in US dollars, which would be deposited in Wall Street and other international banks.

In 2001, dissatisfied with the shrinking value of the dollars that OPEC was getting for its oil, Iraq’s Saddam Hussein broke the pact and sold oil in euros. Regime change swiftly followed, accompanied by widespread destruction of the country.

In Libya, Qaddafi also broke the pact; but he did more than just sell his oil in another currency.

As these developments are detailed by blogger Denise Rhyne:

For decades, Libya and other African countries had been attempting to create a pan-African gold standard. Libya’s al-Qadhafi and other heads of African States had wanted an independent, pan-African, “hard currency.”

Under al-Qadhafi’s leadership, African nations had convened at least twice for monetary unification. The countries discussed the possibility of using the Libyan dinar and the silver dirham as the only possible money to buy African oil.

Until the recent US/NATO invasion, the gold dinar was issued by the Central Bank of Libya (CBL). The Libyan bank was 100% state owned and independent. Foreigners had to go through the CBL to do business with Libya. The Central Bank of Libya issued the dinar, using the country’s 143.8 tons of gold.

Libya’s Qadhafi (African Union 2009 Chair) conceived and financed a plan to unify the sovereign States of Africa with one gold currency (United States of Africa). In 2004, a pan-African Parliament (53 nations) laid plans for the African Economic Community – with a single gold currency by 2023.

African oil-producing nations were planning to abandon the petro-dollar, and demand gold payment for oil/gas.

Showing What is Possible

Qaddafi had done more than organize an African monetary coup. He had demonstrated that financial independence could be achieved. His greatest infrastructure project, the Great Man-made River, was turning arid regions into a breadbasket for Libya; and the $33 billion project was being funded interest-free without foreign debt, through Libya’s own state-owned bank.

That could explain why this critical piece of infrastructure was destroyed in 2011. NATO not only bombed the pipeline but finished off the project by bombing the factory producing the pipes necessary to repair it. Crippling a civilian irrigation system serving up to 70% of the population hardly looks like humanitarian intervention. Rather, as Canadian Professor Maximilian Forte put it in his heavily researched book Slouching Towards Sirte: NATO’s War on Libya and Africa:

[T]he goal of US military intervention was to disrupt an emerging pattern of independence and a network of collaboration within Africa that would facilitate increased African self-reliance. This is at odds with the geostrategic and political economic ambitions of extra-continental European powers, namely the US.

Mystery Solved

Hilary Clinton’s emails shed light on another enigma remarked on by early commentators. Why, within weeks of initiating fighting, did the rebels set up their own central bank? Robert Wenzel wrote in The Economic Policy Journal in 2011:

This suggests we have a bit more than a rag tag bunch of rebels running around and that there are some pretty sophisticated influences. I have never before heard of a central bank being created in just a matter of weeks out of a popular uprising.

It was all highly suspicious, but as Alex Newman concluded in a November 2011 article:

Whether salvaging central banking and the corrupt global monetary system were truly among the reasons for Gadhafi’s overthrow . . . may never be known for certain – at least not publicly.

There the matter would have remained – suspicious but unverified like so many stories of fraud and corruption – but for the publication of Hillary Clinton’s emails after an FBI probe. They add substantial weight to Newman’s suspicions: violent intervention was not chiefly about the security of the people. It was about the security of global banking, money and oil.
Ellen Brown is an attorney, founder of the Public Banking Institute, and author of twelve books including the best-selling Web of Debt. Her latest book, The Public Bank Solution, explores successful public banking models historically and globally. Her 300+ blog articles are at
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Syria's Triumph of Democracy and Anti-Colonial Resistance

Syrian Elections: A Triumph of Democracy and Anti-colonial Resistance

by Gearóid Ó Colmáin

April 14, 2016

The parliamentary Syrian elections taking place in Syria this week prove once more the indomitable resilience of the Syrian people, who are resisting one of the most brutal neo-colonial wars in modern history. Since foreign backed, unknown snipers opened fire on protesters and police on the 17th of March in the city of Daraa, the people of Syria have been defending their country from an armed invasion of brutal, and drugged, Takfiri death squad – all financed by Israel, the Gulf Cooperation Council, and NATO.

The objective of the terrorist invasion of Syria is to conquer the country, by pitching Sunni fanatics against their Shia and Christian brethren. The broader goal of NATO’s genocidal war is to balkanize the proud, multi-cultural and highly united, Arab nationalist states. This strategy of chaos is being carried out in accordance with Israel’s geopolitical objectives in the Middle East, which requires breaking up and destroying all Arab nations contiguous to Israel; this ensures the regional and global supremacy of the Jewish State. It is a long and dirty war, one which could drag on for several decades.

Zionism’s plans for the region are incontrovertibly demonstrated by two documents in particular: the 1982 paper published by the Israeli government official Oded Yinon entitled ‘A Strategy For Israel in the 1980s’, and the 1996 US neo-con document ‘A Clean Break: a New Strategy for Securing the Ream’. Both these testaments prove that Israel intends to destroy all countries who refuse to submit to Zionism’s regional hegemony. Syria has always been at the forefront of anti-Zionist resistance.

The elections today prove to the world once more that Syria IS a democracy, and that it is far more democratic than any of the countries waging war against it. The will of its people is sovereign, inalienable and inviolable. Most importantly, the elections cogently illustrate the triumph of national liberation over neocolonialism, of people-power over tyranny.

There are well-intentioned youths in Paris demonstrating for democracy against anti-popular legislation and the power of money over politics. But these youths have no understanding of the real reasons why their liberties and social security are being stolen from them. They have no idea of the genocide the French and American governments are orchestrating throughout the Southern Hemisphere nations of this planet. They have no idea that they are being led by the same ‘intellectuals‘ who support this colonial war against Syria.

If the ‘nuit debout’ democracy movement in Paris is to become radical, to demand real social change, it will be that moment when they wave in solidarity the flags of the Syrian Arab Republic in Place de la Republique, and proclaim that Syria is a democracy and that the French people must call for ‘regime change’ here and not in Damascus. Until people understand who the real tyrants are, there will be neither peace nor justice in the world.
Gearóid Ó Colmáin is an Irish journalist and political analyst based in Paris. His work focuses on globalisation, geopolitics and class struggle.

"Anti-Semitism": A Most Abused Word

“Anti Semitism”: The Most Abused Word in Canada

by Yves Engler  - Dissident Voice

April 15th, 2016

Anti-Semitism” may be the most abused term in Canada today. Almost entirely divorced from its dictionary definition – “discrimination against or prejudice or hostility toward Jews” – it is now primarily invoked to uphold Jewish/white privilege.

In a recent Canadian Jewish News interview long time l’Université du Québec à Montréal (UQAM) professor Julien Bauer slurs Arabs and Muslims as he bemoans “anti-Semitism”. “In the corridors of UQAM, there are occasionally pro-Hamas demonstrations and anti-Semitic posters, but this is relatively rare,” Bauer wrote in French.

“At Concordia University, it’s an anti-Semitic festival every day of the year! This is normal because there are many more Arab and Muslim students at Concordia than UQAM.”

The Jewish community’s leading media outlet, which recently called Jews the “Chosen People”, failed to question Bauer’s racism and Islamophobia. Instead, they put his picture on the front of the Québec edition.

Over the past several weeks Jewish leaders have labeled a student General Assembly at McGill University, art depicting Palestinian resistance at York, and an effort at that university to divest from arms makers as “anti-Semitic”. Head of the Friends of Simon Wiesenthal Center Avi Benlolo, described the arms divestment effort at York, since it includes Students Against Israeli Apartheid, as “a malicious campaign that targets and singles out the Jewish community as a collective, demonizes Israel and Israelis, applies unfair double standards to Israel at the exclusion of other nations in the Middle East and rejects the legitimacy of Israel as the only Jewish state in the world, thereby inciting an abhorrent resurgence of anti-Semitism.”

Rather than calming the tantrum, Canadian political leaders often contribute to the hysteria of certain Jewish groups. During the recent debate to condemn the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions campaign MPs repeatedly accused a movement demanding Israel comply with international law of being “anti-Semitic”.

The terms “anti-Semitic” and “anti-Semitism” were invoked over 80 times in a debate to justify Jewish/white supremacy in the Middle East.

According to Hansard, parliamentarians have uttered the words “anti-Semitism” and “anti-Semitic” more in the past decade than “racism” or “racist”. (And many of the “racist” references describe purported prejudice against Jews.) The term “anti-blackness” was not recorded in the House of Commons during this period.

Despite widespread discussion of “anti-Semitism”, there is little discussion of Canadian Jewry’s actual place in Canadian society. Among elite business, political and professional circles Jewish representation far surpasses their slim 1.3% of the Canadian population. Studies demonstrate that Canadian Jews are more likely than the general population to hold a bachelor’s degree, earn above $75,000 or be part of the billionaire class.

While Canadian Jews faced discriminatory property, university and immigration restrictions into the 1950s, even the history of structural anti-Jewish prejudice should be put into proper context. Blacks, Japanese and other People of Colour (not to mention indigenous peoples) have been subjected to far worse structural racism and abuse. Even compared to some other “white” groups Canadian Jews have fared well.

During World War I, 8,500 individuals from countries part of the Austro-Hungarian Empire (mostly Ukrainians) were interned while in the mid-1800s thousands of Irish died of typhus at an inspection and quarantine station on Grosse Ile in the Gulf of the St. Lawrence. Canadian Jewry hasn’t faced any equivalent abuse.

While howls of “anti-Semitism” are usually an effort to deter Palestinian solidarity, the shrill claims may also represent what a Freudian psychologist would call a “projection”. Prejudice against Arabs and Muslims appears rampant in the Jewish community. Then there are the remarkable efforts to keep the Jewish community separate and apart from others. A Canadian Jewish News article about mixed race Jews’ inability to find a match on the Jewish Tinder, JSwipe, highlights the issue.

After Israel, no subject garners more attention in the Canadian Jewish News than the importance of cloistering children by ethnicity/religion. Half of Jewish children in Montréal attend Jewish schools, which is startling for a community that represented 7% of the city’s population a century ago. (In the 1920s Yiddish was Montréal’s third most spoken language.)

Montréal’s Jewish community has segregated itself geographically as well. Without retail shops in its boundaries, Hampstead is an affluent Montréal suburb that is three quarters Jewish. Four times larger than the adjacent Hampstead, Côte Saint-Luc is a 32,000-person municipality that is two thirds Jewish.

According to Federation CJA, only 15%-17% of Jewish Montrealers live in intermarried (or common-law) households. For those under-30 it’s still only a quarter. (In Toronto, where Canada’s largest Jewish community resides, the self-segregation is slightly less extreme.)

Inward looking and affluent, the Jewish community is quick to claim victimhood. But, like an out of control child, the major Jewish organizations need a time out. Without an intervention of some sort, the Jewish community risks having future dictionaries defining “anti-Semitism” as “a movement for justice and equality.”

Yves Engler is the author of Canada in Africa: 300 years of aid and exploitation.
Read other articles by Yves.

Department of Fisheries and Oceans Declines to Investigate Second English Bay Oil Spill

Large Diesel Spill Spotted Near Site of last years English Bay Oil Spill

by Stand.Earth

April 15, 2016

Vancouver, BC - The Coast Guard has confirmed a spill of diesel oil in Vancouver’s English Bay following reports of large slick in Vancouver Harbour.

Sven Biggs, campaigner with the environmental group Stand, formally know as ForestEthics, released the following statement:

"Just one year and a week after the last major oil spill in Vancouver we see another massive slick is spreading out across English Bay, near where Humpback Whales were recently spotted. While this spill is not as serious as last years bunker oil spill and no where near as dangerous as a spill of tar sands bitumen, which Kinder Morgan plans to ship through the port in over 400 oil tankers a year if their pipeline is approved, it is a good reminder that oil and water don’t mix.

"The federal Department of Fisheries and Oceans (DFO) has issued a statement saying this latest spill will have no environmental impact but it is hard to look at the images of yet another slick right off Vancouver’s beaches and hear reports of a strong smell of oil from people in our waterfront parks and not be concerned for the state of our marine environment.
"To add insult to injury the DFO says they says they will not be investigating the source of the oil. Following last years spill we were promised better spill response, today's events cause me to question if anything has really changed."

For more information
Sven Biggs -

Stand is an advocacy organization made up of people challenging governments and corporations to make the health of our communities, our environment and our climate the top priority. Stand.Earth

Friday, April 15, 2016

Rejecting Energy Dogma: More to Petroleum Industry Than Just Gas

Rejecting dogmas about petroleum and climate change

by Peter Ewart - 250News

April 15, 2016

The petroleum industry is not a dying industry. Unfortunately, this dogma is often repeated these days, and it is not much different from the dogma that “there is no such thing as human-caused climate change”.

Rather it is an industry that is undergoing fundamental change on the world scale. And what is that change? It is in the early stages of shifting from an industry that is largely reliant on producing combustible fuels (gasoline, diesel, etc.) to an industry that focuses on producing a blizzard of other petroleum-based non-fuel products.

As it stands, we are already surrounded in our homes, workplaces and communities by a huge amount of non-fuel products that are derived from petroleum, including, as other commentators have noted, many of the components of the computer I am currently using to write this article.

Here is just a very small sampling of non-fuel petroleum-derived products around an average house: ink, upholstery, cassettes, CDs, vitamin capsules, dentures and denture adhesives, clothes, combs, toothbrushes, dishwasher parts, floor wax, toilet seats, antihistamines, cortisone, food preservatives, ballpoint pens, nail polish, Vaseline, antiseptics, deodorants, rugs, fertilizers, fishing rods, trash bags, golf bags, candles, faucet washers, water pipes, aspirin, dishes, insecticides, perfumes, soaps, shoes, hair coloring, lipstick, house paint, shower curtains, eyeglasses, detergents, telephones, cameras, bandages, hair curlers, and so on and so forth.

This not to mention that our streets are paved with asphalt and our vehicles (including, as another commentator has noted, electrical vehicles) crammed with petroleum-based products from paints to plastics to lubricants to windshield washer fluid.

Our diverse industries and workplaces are absolutely dependent on a huge variety of petroleum-based products without which they would come to a grinding halt. Indeed, it would take many pages of a book (which also uses petroleum-based products in the printing) to list them all.

It is estimated that there are around 6,000 petroleum-based products being produced in the world today, many of which are essential to our daily lives, our communities and our economy. Even these 6,000 products can be further sub-divided into thousands more products. Now, it is true that some of these products also pose serious problems in themselves such as non-degradable plastics, and so on. But, using technology and science, many of these problems can also be overcome. Other products that remain problems can be discontinued along with combustion fuels.

The point is that, in Canada and on a world scale, we are wasting a large amount of this precious petroleum resource for fuels of various kinds that are destabilizing our planetary climate through carbon emissions. Furthermore, we are missing the opportunity to develop industrial strategies that focus on developing the value-added infrastructure to process and manufacture at least some of these 6,000+ non-fuel products, thus creating jobs and advancing the breadth and depth of our economy.

Should we simply go on “ripping and shipping” the petroleum resource and sending it off to other countries for manufacturing – the agenda of Big Oil?

Should we simply give up and let the resource stay in the ground?

Or should we seize the opportunity to develop the processing and manufacturing of at least some of the 6000+ non-fuel petroleum products and thus strengthen our economy and build our nation, as we go into a future in which fuel combustion will decline dramatically in the context of national and international action on climate change?

Peter Ewart is a columnist and writer based in Prince George, British Columbia. He can be reached at:

Impossible Dreaming: NATO Can't Disarm, Just Yet!

“Poor” G7 Just Cannot Disarm Yet!

by Andre Vltchek  - CounterPunch

April 15, 2016

They met in Hiroshima, Japan, in the first city on Earth that had been subjected to nuclear genocide. They were representing some of the mightiest nations on Earth: Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the United Kingdom, and the United States – the so-called Group of Seven (G7). And at the end of their encounter, they called for “a world without nuclear weapons”.

I am talking about the foreign ministers of seven countries with the largest economies on Earth.

Read carefully the names of these countries, one by one! For decades and centuries, the world has been trembling imagining their armed forces and corporations. Lashes administered by their colonial rulers have scarred entire continents, tens of millions were enslaved, and hundreds of millions killed, billions robbed.

Even now, if we all listen carefully, we can clearly hear the victims screaming, in agony: the native people of Canada and United States, the colonized people of Africa, Asia and the Middle East. For centuries, the entire world has been in shackles, on its knees, humiliated, plundered and destroyed.

G7! How many billions of victims from all corners of the world, made those countries so ‘grand’?

To ensure that the pillage could continue uninterrupted, the West together with those “honorary whites” (a term that the South African apartheid regime invented exclusively for the Japanese people) created several aggressive and belligerent pacts, including NATO, calling them, of course, “defensive” alliances. It came as no surprise: remember that in the lexicon of the Empire of Lies, war is called peace, while aggression is always defined as defense. But this I have already described in detail, in my 820-page book “Exposing Lies of the Empire”.

Now foreign policy tsars of the “G7” were standing shoulder to shoulder again, in Hiroshima, of all places, and only a few days after the 71st anniversary of the nuclear blast. Making predictable declarations and self-glorifying speeches.

The weather was good, partly sunny, with excellent visibility. But was the world really able to see through the thick fog of Machiavellian cynicism and lies, dispersed all over the Planet by those grinning rulers of the world?

On April 11, 2016, the foreign ministers of the Group of Seven (G7) issued a written declaration on nuclear disarmament:

“We reaffirm our commitment to seeking a safer world for all and to creating the conditions for a world without nuclear weapons in a way that promotes international stability”.

Seriously? No one around those ministers fell; nobody was seen to be rolling on the floor, shaking from uncontrollable laughter. Obviously, a joke repeated thousands of times loses its luster.

But that was not all. The text of the declaration continued:

“This task is made more complex by the deteriorating security environment in a number of regions, such as Syria and Ukraine, and, in particular by North Korea’s repeated provocations.”

What exactly were we reading? What was between the lines? Were we being told that the United States needs all of its 6,970 nuclear weapons to antagonize Syria and North Korea, while sustaining the fascist regime in Ukraine?

Just to put things into perspective: two Communist countries with nuclear capability have really negligible stockpiles of nuclear weapons, compared to the West and G7. China has 260 and North Korea (DPRK) approximately 15. In comparison, France has 300 and the U.K., 215.

In 2016, the population of China stands at 1.382 million, while that of France is less than 65 million. China has more than 21 times more people to defend, but despite that, France has more nuclear weapons.

The comparison gets even more ridiculous between North Korea and the U.K.

The figures quoted above are the latest “official” statistics, taken from the World Nuclear Weapons Stockpile Report, updated as recently as on March 2, 2016.

It would also be appropriate to recall that North Korea has never invaded any foreign country. Also China (PRC), apart from two brief border clashes, has never been involved in any large-scale military conflict. Not once has it colonized or destroyed a foreign land. Both France and the U.K. have been plundering on all of the planet’s continents, for centuries. Later, in the 20th Century, the United States ‘took over’ the reigns of imperialism from the old and ‘traditional’ European colonialist empires.

One statement is actually correct: there is that deteriorating security environment in a number of regions, but only due to the covert as well as direct aggressions of NATO and the G7 countries.

But it would be even more honest to declare: “We are sorry, we really cannot disarm, because if we would, it would become much more difficult to loot and to control the world.”

Before dispersing, the G7 party did what its members enjoy doing the most: lashing at China.

As Reuters reported:

“Foreign ministers from the Group of Seven (G7) advanced economies said they strongly opposed provocation in the East and South China Seas, where China is locked in territorial disputes with nations including the Philippines, Vietnam and Japan… Earlier on Monday, the G7 foreign ministers said after meeting in the Japanese city of Hiroshima that they opposed “any intimidating coercive or provocative unilateral actions that could alter the status quo and increase tensions”.”

The US is habitually implementing that ‘good old’ British ‘divide and rule’ strategy. In Asia, it uses its ‘client’ states, particularly the Philippines, Japan and South Korea to isolate and provoke both China and DPRK. This policy is so dangerous that many here believe that it could eventually trigger the Third World War.

This time, China has fired back, almost immediately. At a news briefing, the Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Lu Kang declared:

“If the G7 wants to continue playing a major role in the world, it should take an attitude of seeking truth from the facts to handle the issues the international community is most concerned with at the moment.”

The Western military build-up in the Asia Pacific region, the military maneuvers conducted jointly by the US and South Korea, as well as the continuous militarization of Japan, are definitely some of the topics that are making most of the Asian continent both ‘concerned’ and frightened.

Predictably, the DPRK remained the main punch bag of the G7. The ministers never explained exactly why the world should be petrified of North Korea. Such fear should apparently be taken for granted, especially after the long decades of intensive and vicious Western and South Korean propaganda.

But back to the statement of the ministers:

“We condemn in the strongest terms the nuclear test on January 6 and the launch using ballistic missile technology on February 7, March 10 and March 18 conducted by North Korea. It is profoundly deplorable that North Korea has conducted four nuclear tests in the 21st century.”

Of course, building defenses against the combined NATO and G7 aggressions is one of the most deplorable crimes, it calls for capital punishment!

Shamelessly, after spreading verbal toxins, all seven ministers went to the grounds of the monument and museum dedicated to the victims of “Hiroshima A-bomb”.

The Japanese Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida led the pack. Under the bizarre leadership of his government, Japan has been doing its absolute best to betray Asia, and to antagonize its neighbors. In the most servile and shameful way, it has fully accepted the Western dictates, increased the volume of its own hysterical propaganda campaign against China and DPRK, and has begun to bolster its military.

Why? Just to please its masters, those ‘noble and superior Westerners’!

By now, Japan is not even what its Prime Minister Shinzō Abe wants the world to believe that it is: a conservative nation governed by a nationalist government.

Japan has no spine, just as it has no foreign policy. It fully takes orders from the United States. And as I was told repeatedly by one of the employees of the NHK:

“No major media outlet in Japan would dare to broadcast anything important, related to international affairs, that hasn’t appeared previously on at least one of the major US networks.”

Looking at Japan’s past, “conservative nationalists” used to be, for instance, some of the greatest writers like Yukio Mishima, a man who ended his life in 1970 by committing a ritual suicide, protesting Japan’s unabashed submission to the West. Japan’s Prime Minister Abe is definitely a ‘conservative’, but is he really a Japanese nationalist? He is defending the interests of Washington much more than those of his own country. Perhaps, “honorary white and one of G7 leaders” would be the most fitting term to define him.

Now, according to the official NATO website: “Japan is the longest-standing of NATO’s “partners across the globe”.

It is also one of the nations that are shamelessly plundering the world through its brutal corporations.


And so they stood there – seven ministers from some of the most aggressive countries on Earth.

They stood on the turf that was, more than 70 years ago, burned to ashes, in just a few seconds after the nuclear explosion.

They said again and again how much they would like to disarm, how much they would like to see the world free of nuclear weapons.

What they didn’t say was that they never would disarm, voluntarily.

And they never clarified how they actually made it to that exclusive G7 club: because of the unbridled plunder during their colonial history, and because of the modern-day global corporate pillage, as well as their mining and oil “investments”. And of course because of the “world order”, imposed by force and all sorts of weapons, nuclear and conventional, on the rest of the Planet.

Instead of Group of Seven, this pack should be simply called ‘GS’ – the Group of Shame.

The ministers stood for some time in front of the flame burning at the monument to Hiroshima A-bomb victims. They posed for the cameras. Then they went away, sat down at some table, and wrote the official declaration on nuclear disarmament, ‘explaining’ why they cannot abandon their tools of coercion. And that declaration turned out to be nothing more than yet another monumental pile of lies!
Andre Vltchek is a philosopher, novelist, filmmaker and investigative journalist. He covered wars and conflicts in dozens of countries. His latest books are: “Exposing Lies Of The Empire” and “Fighting Against Western Imperialism”.Discussion with Noam Chomsky: On Western Terrorism. Point of No Return is his critically acclaimed political novel. Oceania – a book on Western imperialism in the South Pacific. His provocative book about Indonesia: “Indonesia – The Archipelago of Fear”. Andre is making films for teleSUR and Press TV. After living for many years in Latin America and Oceania, Vltchek presently resides and works in East Asia and the Middle East. He can be reached through his website or his Twitter.
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Chaos and the Warrior Queen: Thoughts on Hillary and the Alternative Hope for Peace

A Note on Hillary Clinton, the Queen of Chaos

by Diana Johnstone - CounterPunch

April 15, 2016

About a year ago, I concluded my book on Hillary Clinton, “Queen of Chaos”, with a fairly pessimistic chapter on the “War Party” which controls United States foreign policy. At the time, I wrote:

“A last-minute peace candidate would be a divine surprise. But a real alternative to the War Party must be built up over time…”

In fact, this primary campaign has produced a couple of surprises, more earthly than divine.

Both surprises reveal widespread grass roots discontent with both Hillary Clinton and the whole American political establishment. However, this discontent so far fails to focus on the point of my book: the need to combat the ideology and practice of U.S. war policy personified by Hillary Clinton. Where is the effective alternative to the War Party?

Donald Trump has made it clear he wants to end the current hysterical anti-Putin pre-war propaganda and do business with Russia. This sounds like a major step toward preventing nuclear war. All to the good. The problem is, Trump is a lone wolf.

Many of his supporters seem more excited by style than by content. Their multiple incoherent grudges against the system do not add up to an anti-war movement. Trump is unpredictable, and it is hard to see where he would find the foreign policy team and the support needed to overthrow the entrenched foreign policy elite.

With Bernie Sanders, things are a bit the other way around.

The Sanders campaign is creating an enthusiastic popular movement, with specific aims in domestic policy. Bernie calls for a “political revolution” and insists that he cannot accomplish all this by himself. All to the good. But Bernie Sanders has said little about foreign policy.

The radical shift in domestic priorities advocated by Bernie implies drastic cuts in military spending, but he has not been spelling this out. Despite his strong opposition to the 2003 invasion of Iraq, he has been susceptible to the “humanitarian” war cries of the liberal interventionists, who would certainly strive to take charge of his foreign policy should he miraculously be elected.

So, Trump has the defiance, and Bernie has the movement.

What is still lacking in this campaign is clear denunciation of the very worst of Hillary Clinton’s many negative traits: her eagerness to go to war. And it is not merely Hillary who needs to be defeated: it is the entire militaristic power structure she represents.

One hopeful sign is the resignation from the Democratic National Committee of Hawai’i Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard in order bring her strong voice against “regime change” wars into the Sanders campaign. There is a chance that as it develops, anti-war sentiment may grow more explicit in the Sanders movement, influencing Bernie himself and providing the social force needed to confront the liberal interventionists within the Democratic Party.

The occasion of this campaign should be seized not only to expose the lies of Hillary Clinton, but also to seek freedom from America’s seven decades of subjugation to the military-industrial complex and its organic intellectuals who never cease conjuring up “threats” and “enemies” to justify the war economy. This entire policy needs to be exposed, denounced and rejected.

That is what I tried to do in Queen of Chaos.

CounterPunch invited me to write this letter to advertise my book at this crucial time, but I prefer to quote someone I admire, David Swanson, who wrote:

“Diana Johnstone’s forthcoming book, Queen of Chaos: The Misadventures of Hillary Clinton, succeeds in providing an understanding of Hillary Clinton’s own worldview like nothing else I’ve read — and it does so despite being largely not about Hillary Clinton. Johnstone’s book is culture and political criticism at its finest. It’s a study of the American neo-liberal, with a particular focus here-and-there on Clinton. I strongly recommend reading it, whatever your level of interest in the ‘Queen of Chaos’ herself, for its illumination of the ideologies underlying U.S. adventurism, exceptionalism, and ‘responsibility to protect’, obsession with identifying believable threats of ‘genocide’ in nations disloyal to Washington or Wall Street.” 

Diana Johnstone is the author of Fools’ Crusade: Yugoslavia, NATO, and Western Delusions. Her new book is Queen of Chaos: the Misadventures of Hillary Clinton. She can be reached at
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Thursday, April 14, 2016

Brinkmanship and Hysteria: What Is the Pentagon and Press Playing at in Russia?

Brinksmanship, but by whom? Russia...or the US?: Hysterical Cold-War Style US Reporting as 2 Unarmed Russian Jets Buzz US Destroyer Sailing Near Russian Port

by Dave Lindorff  - This Can't Be Happening

April 14, 2016

US news reports on an incident Tuesday in which two Russian jet fighters buzzed very close to a US destroyer, the USS Donald Cook, in the Baltic Sea, make it sound like a serious threat in which the US might have been justified in defending itself against a simulated attack on the high seas.

Nowhere in the reports in the US was it mentioned that the Cook was itself engaging in provocative behavior.

The Baltic Sea is an international waterway, bordering the countries of Denmark, Germany, Poland, Russia, Latvia, Estonia, Lithuania, Finland and Sweden, and as such, if the US wants to sail a military ship there, it has every right to do so. But honest reporting on this incident should have included that the Cook wasn't just sailing around innocently in the open waters of the Baltic. It had moved to within a 70-mile radius of the Russian port enclave of Kaliningrad -- an isolated and thus sensitive part of Russian territory located on the Baltic coast that is bounded by Lithuania and Poland and thus is separated from the rest of Russia. Kaliningrad is the site of a major Russian naval base, and is also home to 500,000 Russian people.

Here's a map of Kaliningrad showing the 70-mile radius within which the USS Cook had positioned itself at the time of the multiple flybys by two Russian Su-24s (and where it was engaging in landing and takeoff exercises with Polish military helicopters.

The US reporting on this whole incident has been hysterical.

CNN's Pentagon reporter said the jets were "demonstrating a simulated strafing run" and implied that it was dangerous because "if it had been a real strafing run, we wouldn't have known it until it was too late." Of course, Russia and the US are not at war, so why would Russia have strafed a US destroyer? The reporter didn't say. Instead, he said the ship's commander deserved "kudos" for keeping his cool and not loosing the ships anti-aircraft defenses on the two jets.

The Russian jets, it should be noted (but wasn't in this report until late in the piece), were not armed, with no missiles mounted on the wings. The Cook, on the other hand, is armed not only with deadly defensive anti-aircraft weapons, but also with offensive (and potentially nuclear-tipped) Tomahawk cruise missiles, making its maneuvers in and around the Russian base and Russian territory anything but innocent.

Other US news reports were similarly breathless and one-sidedly jingoistic in their reporting about the encounter.

In fact, there was nothing dangerous about the incident at all except if the US ship's crew had been foolish enough to respond to the harassment by shooting down the planes. (in truth, nobody on the US vessel seems to have been particularly anxious about the Russian jets zipping by them, judging from videos taken by the crew.)

A fairer reporting job might have speculated as to how US forces would have responded, had a Russian cruise-missile-armed frigate or destroyer approached within 70 miles of naval bases at Newport News, Virginia, or San Diego, or perhaps the Pensacoula Naval Air Station on the coast of Florida just east of Mobile in the Gulf of Mexico. (See map below, to understand to how near the USS Cook was to Kaliningrad when it was buzzed.)

X marks the spot at 70 miles offshore where a Russian ship would be 
if it were as close to Pensacoula as the Cook was to Kaliningrad

Under international maritime laws, a country can claim the waters within 12 miles of its coast to be "territorial waters," and can exclude foreign ships within that distance, but when it comes to military bases, and countries that a country views as potentially rivals, such as the US and Russia or China, ships further off from a base are liable to be surveilled and maybe even harassed if they approach. I'm guessing if a Russian warship were to get within 70 miles of a US Naval installation, it would, like the USS Cook, find itself being buzzed by US Navy attack planes, or visited by US Coast Guard vessels--especially if it were known to be armed with long-range potentially nuclear-tipped cruise missiles!

And remember, while US government officials keep referring to Russian "aggression" (falsely claiming, for example, the the Russian Army "invaded" Ukraine and especially the erstwhile Ukrainian territory of Crimea (later annexed following a local plebicite), it has actually been the US that has been taking a very aggressive stance towards Russia. This has been true ever since the US backed a coup in Ukraine, which ousted the elected pro-Russian leader of that country and installed a fascist anti-Russian government their that then launched a war against the Russian minority in Eastern Ukraine. The US lately has been moving offensive weaponry into Poland, Estonia and other countries bordering Russia in what can only be seen as threatening moves, while leading an embargo against Russia --itself an act of economic warfare.

It is in light of these aggressive US moves that the USS Cook's incursion near Kaliningrad has to be seen, and also the Russian aerial response to it.

But that kind of fair and balanced reporting is absolutely absent from US corporate media reports on this incident, which instead simply parrot the Pentagon and State Department line and present it all as an example of Russian "brinksmanship."

By the way, I think it's safe to assume that this kind of dangerous brinksmanship -- dispatching of a nuclear-armed, or potentially nuclear-armed ship up close to Russia's borders to play chicken with the Russian Navy and Air Force -- is not something we'd see if Bernie Sanders were president, but it is something we can expect if his neocon opponent Hillary Clinton, or any Republican candidate (with the possible exception of Donald Trump), were to replace President Obama.

RT TV Star Arrested at "Democracy Spring" in DC

Lee Camp Arrested At Democracy Spring

by Greg Palast

April 13, 2016

Lee Camp, host of RT's Redacted Tonight and resident Palast Investigative Fund humorist was arrested Tuesday afternoon at the Democracy Spring protests in Washington DC.

He was one of hundreds who have been arrested in the actions, which are now on day three of ten days of protests. Democracy Spring is a coalition of like-minded groups working together for voting rights, getting money out of politics and protecting the environment.

Check out Lee Camp's videos on how to protect your vote from the DVD "Why We Occupy" below.

 Listen to Lee's interview with RT’s Eunan O’Neill on his arrest.

“There’s a lot of people that are standing up and willing to get arrested to call attention to how money has corrupted our entire system,” Camp told RT in the interview.

Camp has since been released from police custody.

The New Rush: Heading for Them Thar Lithium Hills

Tesla and Other Tech Giants Scramble For Lithium as Prices Double

by James Stafford -

Demand for lithium—the hottest commodity on the planet and the only commodity to show positive price movement in 2015—is poised to continue on its upward trajectory, becoming the world’s new gasoline and earning the moniker of ‘’White Petroleum’’. And the battle for market share in and around this commodity has everyone from major tech players to trend-setting investor gurus vying for a foothold.

Driven by the rise of battery gigafactories and game-changing Powerwall and energy storage businesses, the world now finds itself at the beginning of a lithium super cycle that is all about securing new supply, much of which is poised to come from lithium superstar Argentina.

We have Tesla in the far corner, building its battery gigafactory in Nevada, for which it needs tons of lithium at a reasonable price, and just last week Tesla announced its plans for the Model 3, which has already hit over 300,000 pre-orders. To give you an idea of just how meaningful this is, Tesla produced less than 50,000 cars last year. Elon himself mentioned during the unveiling that Tesla will be gobbling up much of the world’s lithium supply with plans to produce 500,000 EVs per year. “In order to produce a half million cars per year…we would basically need to absorb the entire world’s lithium-ion production.” Remember – this is one man, one company. Tesla’s soon-to-be-completed gigafactory will produce more lithium-ion batteries than the rest of the world combined.

And opposite Tesla, we have some other major players shifting gears that will affect the lithium space.

Chinese billionaire Jia Yueting is stepping onto Tesla’s playing field with its own electric car start-up, Faraday Future, and Apple is planning one too, by 2019. Through its Alphabet holding company, Google is also getting into the game with plans for a self-driving car.

They are fighting it out not only to be the first to capture the most electric vehicle market share and the best engineers, but they are getting down to the core of this arena, which is lithium—the key element that will make it all work.

This is D-Day for lithium miners, and it’s all about new entrants to a space that is about to change exponentially. Big investors are definitively standing up and taking notice—and even jumping into the game.

One of Canada’s most noteworthy investors in the mining sector, Frank Giustra, is the latest to see lithium for what it is—the single-most valuable commodity of our tech-driven future, and one that is already in short supply.

The investor extraordinaire with a focus on big mining deals has thrown his support behind Lithium X which is exploring in the key “Lithium Triangle” area of Argentina and is the largest land holder in Nevada’s Clayton Valley, the only producing lithium area in the entire United States. Lithium X has over 15,000 acres in Clayton Valley, near Albermarle’s Silver Peak mine, the only American lithium producer right now, and about three hours from Tesla’s gigafactory.

“Right now, there is a lot of ‘smart money’ getting in on the lithium land rush, and a mining legend like Giustra would never have been late to this party in Nevada—but the big attraction is our lithium plays in Argentina, which is ground zero for the commodity in South America,” Lithium X Chairman Paul Matysek told

“At the end of the day, Frank ,likes to get involved in a project if he sees a massive shift in an industry’s fundamentals ,” Matysek added. “Lithium— is certainly showing all the right signs!”

Floored by the ‘White Petroleum’ Fundamentals

The fundamentals here are impressive, and the catalysts for lithium prices are spectacularly clear—all of which is pushing prices up and creating an aggressively competitive playing field that is likely to see a lot of acquisition talk.

There are plenty of reasons to be bullish about what Goldman Sachs calls the “new gasoline” that will fuel our technology-driven resource era.

(Click to enlarge)

According to The Economist, the ‘’global scramble to secure supplies of lithium by the world’s largest battery producers, and by end-users such as carmakers”, among other things, has seen the price of lithium carbonate imported to China more than double just in November and December of last year alone, when it reached an amazing $13,000 per ton. Some contracts in China, according to Bloomberg, have seen over $23,000.

The current market turmoil has created a once in a generation opportunity for savvy energy investors.
Whilst the mainstream media prints scare stories of oil prices falling through the floor smart investors are setting up their next winning oil plays.

There is no denying that this is a euphorically tight market, with demand rising steadily and expected to spike drastically, and suppliers struggling to keep pace—which means that the door for new lithium supplies is wide open and this is now a fast-paced exploration and exploitation game.

And even without the battery gigafactories, a Powerwall and storage revolution or streets lined with electric vehicles—demand for lithium would still remain steady just to keep up with consumer electronics.

For the electric vehicle industry alone, Goldman Sachs predicts that for every 1 percent rise in EV market share, lithium demand will rise by 70,000 tons per year. Furthermore, Goldman Sachs predicts that the lithium market could triple in size by 2025 just on the back of electric vehicles.

The Hunt for Lithium Is On …

The lithium that is currently being mined quite simply is not enough to put a dent in the projected demand dictated by our hunger for consumer electronics and the pending energy revolution. This means that the new market is all about new players.

Right now, most of the world’s lithium comes from Australia, China and the “Lithium Triangle” of Argentina, Chile and Bolivia. In North America, Nevada is the only player in this game, but more to the point, the U.S. state has the best lithium there is to have—lithium found in the brine.

Lithium sourced from brines, or salt water, is the most cost-effective on the market, and sourcing enough of it right at home would be a coup for all sides in the battery, storage and EV game.

And while lithium has traditionally been controlled by a handful of major global suppliers, spiking demand is changing this landscape drastically.

The four companies that currently control the lithium space—Albermarle (NYSE:ALB) in Chile and Nevada; SQM (NYSE:SQM) in Chile; FMC (NYSE:FMC) in Argentina; and Sichuan Tianqi in China—are about to make way for the new entrants.

And when it comes to new entrants, the biggest market share will be scooped up by those who can come up with the most lithium sourced from the brine. That means getting in on the new game in Nevada, but perhaps more importantly, securing positions in the bigger venues, particularly in Argentina.

Within the Lithium Triangle, it’s all about Argentina right now. Chile is not granting any new concessions, and opposition in Bolivia has led to a suspension of lithium mining. Argentina has recently announced a deal with creditors to repay debt stemming from the country’s 2001-2002 default, paving the way for Argentina’s return to global financial markets.

And the Argentina lithium rush is already in full swing, with miners eyeing resources of up to 128 million tons of lithium carbonate.

Investors have been pouring into this sector, according to Argentine Mining Secretary Jorge Mayoral, who recently noted that “all the big auto makers have been present in Argentina trying to get a foot in lithium development”, including Toyota, Mitsubishi and Posco.

For those who come up with the next supply, the industry will come right to them, and the sniffing around has already begun in full force.

Playing Fast and Loose with Terror: Western Intelligence's "Catch and Release" Program

The West’s Terrorist “Catch and Release” Program

by Tony Catalucci - NEO

April 13, 2016

Virtually every suspect involved in recent Brussels bombing had been tracked, arrested, in custody – either by European security agencies or the agencies of their allies – but inexplicably released and allowed to carry out both the Brussels attack as well as the Paris attack that preceded it.

So obvious is this fact, that the Western media itself admits it, but simply dismisses the obvious and deeper implications such facts pose by claiming it is merely systemic incompetence.
Image: The Brussels bombing suspects… 
Every single one of these men were in the 
custody of Western security agencies for 
violent crimes or terrorism-related charges.

The Wall Street Journal would admit that the recently arrested “man in the hat” also known as Mohamed Abrini, was also arrested for suspected terrorist activity – allegedly scoping out potential targets in the UK – but also – like his collaborators – inexplicably released. His brother had been to Syria where he fought and died alongside the so-called “Islamic State” (ISIS), and Abrini himself too appears to have been in Syria.

The Wall Street Journal’s article, “Brussels Suspect Mohamed Abrini: What We Know,” reports that:

After the U.K., Mr. Abrini traveled to Paris and then Brussels, where he was arrested but then released, according to the two people. But Belgian authorities passed the information about his U.K. trip, including images found on his phone, to the British, the sources said.

Abrini’s case of “catch and release” before carrying out a successful string of deadly attacks across Europe, is just the latest.

West’s ISIS Catch and Release Program

Germany’s largest press agency, Deutsche Presse-Agentur, reported in their article, “Reports: Brothers known to police were among Brussels suicide bombers,” that:

Two Brussels brothers who were known to police are among the suicide bombers who carried out deadly terrorist attacks on the international airport and subway in the Belgian capital, local media reported Wednesday.

And that:

[Khalid El Bakraoui] had been sentenced in early 2011 to five years in prison for carjackings, after having been arrested in possession of Kalashnikov rifles, according to the Belga news agency.

His brother, 30-year-old Brahim, had been sentenced in 2010 to nine years in prison for having shot at police with a Kalashnikov rifle during a hold-up, Belga said.

The New York Times, in their article, “Brussels Attack Lapses Acknowledged by Belgian Officials,” would report regarding another Brussels bombing suspect, Brahim El Bakraoui, and his arrest and deportation from Turkey that:

The Belgian justice and interior ministers acknowledged that their departments should have acted on a Turkish alert about a convicted Belgian criminal briefly arrested in Turkey last year on suspicion of terrorist activity, who turned out to be one of the suicide bombers. And the Belgian prosecutor’s office said that person’s brother — another suicide bomber — had been wanted since December in connection with the Paris attacks.

That makes 4 suspects who were known to European security agencies for violent crimes and/or terrorism, with each and every one of them in custody before the attacks unfolded.

For fisheries around the world, the concept of “catch and release” allows anglers to enjoy the fishing experience while preserving the numbers and health of fish populations. The concept of “catch and release” for Western security and intelligence agencies appears very similar – to maintain the illusion of counterterrorism operations, while maintaining the numbers and health of terrorist organizations around the world.

Answering “to what end” the West is allowing terrorists to successfully carry out attacks against Western targets, the answer is quite simple. It allows for the expansion of power and control at home while justifying endless and profitable wars abroad.

The creation and perpetuation of terrorist organizations like Al Qaeda and ISIS by the West and its allies serve another, admitted purpose. In the 1980’s it was admitted that Al Qaeda was created to wage proxy war against the Soviet Union in Afghanistan. In 2011, the US and its NATO and Persian Gulf allies used terrorists linked to Al Qaeda in Libya and Syria in an attempt to overthrow their respective governments.

Today, ISIS serves both as an armed proxy waging full-scale war on the governments of Syria, Iraq, and more indirectly Iran and Russia, as well as a means to threaten and coerce nations around the world.

Political impasses in Southeast Asia revolving around America’s waning influence in the region have been met with the sudden and otherwise inexplicable appearance of ISIS. In one case, Indonesia signed a large rail deal while pursuing other economic and military partnerships with Beijing, before suffering its fist ISIS attack in its capital, Jakarta.

Thailand was likewise threatened by the US of an imminent ISIS attack, amid attempts by Bangkok to uproot the political networks of US-backed political proxy, Thaksin Shinawatra. Bangkok has also shown hesitation to sign the unpopular US-sponsored Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) free trade agreement.

Bangkok was already hit by terrorism last year after returning suspected terrorists to China to face justice against America’s repeated protests. Just months later, groups tied to NATO terrorist front, the Turkish Grey Wolves, carried out a bombing in the center of Bangkok.

ISIS, its counterparts, and peripheral groups like NATO’s Grey Wolves, serve multiple roles for the West. They are a pretext to invade and occupy foreign nations, a proxy army to wage war against its enemies with, and a means of maintaining fear and obedience at home under the auspices of an increasing police state. It is difficult to believe the West could maintain its current foreign and domestic policy without this menace – it has become an integral part of Western geopolitical strategy.

Would a Signed Confession Convince You?

Many are quick to dismiss evidence of Western special interests’ use of terrorists and terrorism to project geopolitical power abroad and maintain control at home. This is despite the admitted nature of the West’s role in the creation and utilization of Al Qaeda in Afghanistan during the 1980s, and signed and dated policy papers like the Brookings Institution’s 2009 “Which Path to Persia?” document which openly advocated using listed-terrorist organization, Mujahedin-e Khalq (MEK), to wage a proxy campaign of violence against the Iranian people and their government.

MEK, it should be noted, is guilty of killing American civilians and military personnel, as well as continuing a campaign of terrorism against civilian and political targets in Iran. Brookings in fact, admits this while proposing the US’ use of the terrorist organization to carry out US foreign policy objectives. If MEK is a suitable candidate for Western sponsorship, why not ISIS?

Considering this, and the “coincidental” arming and funding of “rebels” in Libya by the US and its allies in 2011 who are now verifiably members of listed terrorist organizations, revelations of US involvement behind the rise of ISIS should come as little surprise.

And beyond mere speculation, a 2012 US Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) report leaked to the public, admits that the US and its allies sought the creation of a “Salafist” (Islamic) “principality” (State) in eastern Syria, precisely where ISIS now resides.

The US DIA admitted:

If the situation unravels there is the possibility of establishing a declared or undeclared Salafist principality in eastern Syria (Hasaka and Der Zor), and this is exactly what the supporting powers to the opposition want, in order to isolate the Syrian regime, which is considered the strategic depth of the Shia expansion (Iraq and Iran). 

The DIA document then explains exactly who this “Salafist principality’s” supporters are (and who its true enemies are):

The West, Gulf countries, and Turkey support the opposition; while Russia, China, and Iran support the regime.

All that’s left is for the Pentagon to perhaps, disclose payslips for ISIS leaders or logistical documents regarding US-NATO resupply operations for ISIS along the Turkish-Syrian border – and perhaps even such a disclosure would still not be enough to convince some in the West that the special interests posing as their leaders are complicit in creating not only ISIS, but organizing and ensuring the chaos they cause unfolding at home and abroad wherever and whenever needed.

The fact that literally ever Brussels and Paris attack suspect was known to and in many cases detained by Western security agencies before the attacks, yet were released before being allowed to carry out their attacks successfully, proves that the West is enjoying the “experience” of maintaining a war on terror, but like good fishery conservationists, is ensuring the populations of their quarry remain healthy and numerous.
Tony Cartalucci, Bangkok-based geopolitical researcher and writer, especially for the online magazineNew Eastern Outlook”.

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

"Yats" Gets the Axe: When Factotums Fall

‘Yats’ Is No Longer the Guy

by Robert Parry  - Consortium News

April 11, 2016

In reporting on the resignation of Ukrainian Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk, the major U.S. newspapers either ignored or distorted Assistant Secretary of State Victoria Nuland’s infamous intercepted phone call before the 2014 coup in which she declared “Yats is the guy!” 

Assistant Secretary of State for European Affairs Victoria Nuland, who pushed for the Ukraine coup and helped pick the post-coup leaders. 

Several weeks before Ukraine’s 2014 coup, Nuland had already picked Arseniy Yatsenyuk to be the future leader, but now “Yats” is no longer the guy. 

Though Nuland’s phone call introduced many Americans to the previously obscure Yatsenyuk, its timing – a few weeks before the ouster of elected Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych – was never helpful to Washington’s desired narrative of the Ukrainian people rising up on their own to oust a corrupt leader.

Instead, the conversation between Nuland and U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine Geoffrey Pyatt sounded like two proconsuls picking which Ukrainian politicians would lead the new government. Nuland also disparaged the less aggressive approach of the European Union with the pithy put-down: “Fuck the E.U.!”

More importantly, the intercepted call, released onto YouTube in early February 2014, represented powerful evidence that these senior U.S. officials were plotting – or at least collaborating in – a coup d’etat against Ukraine’s democratically elected president. So, the U.S. government and the mainstream U.S. media have since consigned this revealing discussion to the Great Memory Hole.

On Monday, in reporting on Yatsenyuk’s Sunday speech in which he announced that he is stepping down, The Washington Post and The Wall Street Journal didn’t mention the Nuland-Pyatt conversation at all.

The New York Times did mention the call but misled its readers regarding its timing, making it appear as if the call followed rather than preceded the coup. That way the call sounded like two American officials routinely appraising Ukraine’s future leaders, not plotting to oust one government and install another.

The Times article by Andrew E. Kramer said: “Before Mr. Yatsenyuk’s appointment as prime minister in 2014, a leaked recording of a telephone conversation between Victoria J. Nuland, a United States assistant secretary of state, and the American ambassador in Ukraine, Geoffrey R. Pyatt, seemed to underscore the West’s support for his candidacy. ‘Yats is the guy,’ Ms. Nuland had said.”

Ukraine’s Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk.
(Photo credit: Ybilyk)

Notice, however, that if you didn’t know that the conversation occurred in late January or early February 2014, you wouldn’t know that it preceded the Feb. 22, 2014 coup. You might have thought that it was just a supportive chat before Yatsenyuk got his new job.

You also wouldn’t know that much of the Nuland-Pyatt conversation focused on how they were going to “glue this thing” or “midwife this thing,” comments sounding like prima facie evidence that the U.S. government was engaged in “regime change” in Ukraine, on Russia’s border.

The ‘No Coup’ Conclusion

But Kramer’s lack of specificity about the timing and substance of the call fits with a long pattern of New York Times’ bias in its coverage of the Ukraine crisis. On Jan. 4, 2015, nearly a year after the U.S.-backed coup, the Times published an “investigation” article declaring that there never had been a coup. It was just a case of President Yanukovych deciding to leave and not coming back.

That article reached its conclusion, in part, by ignoring the evidence of a coup, including the Nuland-Pyatt phone call. The story was co-written by Kramer and so it is interesting to know that he was at least aware of the “Yats is the guy” reference although it was ignored in last year’s long-form article.

Instead, Kramer and his co-author Andrew Higgins took pains to mock anyone who actually looked at the evidence and dared reach the disfavored conclusion about a coup. If you did, you were some rube deluded by Russian propaganda.

“Russia has attributed Mr. Yanukovych’s ouster to what it portrays as a violent, ‘neo-fascist’ coup supported and even choreographed by the West and dressed up as a popular uprising,” Higgins and Kramer wrote.
“Few outside the Russian propaganda bubble ever seriously entertained the Kremlin’s line. But almost a year after the fall of Mr. Yanukovych’s government, questions remain about how and why it collapsed so quickly and completely.”

The Times’ article concluded that Yanukovych “was not so much overthrown as cast adrift by his own allies, and that Western officials were just as surprised by the meltdown as anyone else. The allies’ desertion, fueled in large part by fear, was accelerated by the seizing by protesters of a large stock of weapons in the west of the country. But just as important, the review of the final hours shows, was the panic in government ranks created by Mr. Yanukovych’s own efforts to make peace.”

Ousted Ukrainian President
Viktor Yanukovych.

Yet, one might wonder what the Times thinks a coup looks like. Indeed, the Ukrainian coup had many of the same earmarks as such classics as the CIA-engineered regime changes in Iran in 1953 and in Guatemala in 1954.

The way those coups played out is now historically well known. Secret U.S. government operatives planted nasty propaganda about the targeted leader, stirred up political and economic chaos, conspired with rival political leaders, spread rumors of worse violence to come and then – as political institutions collapsed – watched as the scared but duly elected leader made a hasty departure.

In Iran, the coup reinstalled the autocratic Shah who then ruled with a heavy hand for the next quarter century; in Guatemala, the coup led to more than three decades of brutal military regimes and the killing of some 200,000 Guatemalans.

Coups don’t have to involve army tanks occupying the public squares, although that is an alternative model which follows many of the same initial steps except that the military is brought in at the end. The military coup was a common approach especially in Latin America in the 1960s and 1970s.

‘Color Revolutions’

But the preferred method in more recent years has been the “color revolution,” which operates behind the façade of a “peaceful” popular uprising and international pressure on the targeted leader to show restraint until it’s too late to stop the coup. Despite the restraint, the leader is still accused of gross human rights violations, all the better to justify his removal.

Later, the ousted leader may get an image makeover; instead of a cruel bully, he is ridiculed for not showing sufficient resolve and letting his base of support melt away, as happened with Mohammad Mossadegh in Iran and Jacobo Arbenz in Guatemala.

But the reality of what happened in Ukraine was never hard to figure out. Nor did you have to be inside “the Russian propaganda bubble” to recognize it. George Friedman, the founder of the global intelligence firm Stratfor, called Yanukovych’s overthrow “the most blatant coup in history.”

Which is what it appears if you consider the evidence. The first step in the process was to create tensions around the issue of pulling Ukraine out of Russia’s economic orbit and capturing it in the European Union’s gravity, a plan defined by influential American neocons in 2013.

On Sept. 26, 2013, National Endowment for Democracy President Carl Gershman, who has been a major neocon paymaster for decades, took to the op-ed page of the neocon Washington Post and called Ukraine “the biggest prize” and an important interim step toward toppling Russian President Vladimir Putin.

At the time, Gershman, whose NED is funded by the U.S. Congress to the tune of about $100 million a year, was financing scores of projects inside Ukraine training activists, paying for journalists and organizing business groups.

As for the even bigger prize — Putin — Gershman wrote: “Ukraine’s choice to join Europe will accelerate the demise of the ideology of Russian imperialism that Putin represents. Russians, too, face a choice, and Putin may find himself on the losing end not just in the near abroad but within Russia itself.”

At that time, in early fall 2013, Ukraine’s President Yanukovych was exploring the idea of reaching out to Europe with an association agreement. But he got cold feet in November 2013 when economic experts in Kiev advised him that the Ukrainian economy would suffer a $160 billion hit if it separated from Russia, its eastern neighbor and major trading partner. There was also the West’s demand that Ukraine accept a harsh austerity plan from the International Monetary Fund.

Yanukovych wanted more time for the E.U. negotiations, but his decision angered many western Ukrainians who saw their future more attached to Europe than Russia. Tens of thousands of protesters began camping out at Maidan Square in Kiev, with Yanukovych ordering the police to show restraint.

Meanwhile, with Yanukovych shifting back toward Russia, which was offering a more generous $15 billion loan and discounted natural gas, he soon became the target of American neocons and the U.S. media, which portrayed Ukraine’s political unrest as a black-and-white case of a brutal and corrupt Yanukovych opposed by a saintly “pro-democracy” movement.

Cheering an Uprising

The Maidan uprising was urged on by American neocons, including Assistant Secretary of State for European Affairs Nuland, who passed out cookies at the Maidan and reminded Ukrainian business leaders that the United States had invested $5 billion in their “European aspirations.”

A screen shot of U.S. Assistant Secretary of State for European 
Affairs Victoria Nuland speaking to U.S. and Ukrainian business leaders 
on Dec. 13, 2013, at an event sponsored by Chevron, with its logo to Nuland’s left.

Sen. John McCain, R-Arizona, also showed up, standing on stage with right-wing extremists from the Svoboda Party and telling the crowd that the United States was with them in their challenge to the Ukrainian government.

As the winter progressed, the protests grew more violent. Neo-Nazi and other extremist elements from Lviv and other western Ukrainian cities began arriving in well-organized brigades or “sotins” of 100 trained street fighters. Police were attacked with firebombs and other weapons as the violent protesters began seizing government buildings and unfurling Nazi banners and even a Confederate flag.

Though Yanukovych continued to order his police to show restraint, he was still depicted in the major U.S. news media as a brutal thug who was callously murdering his own people. The chaos reached a climax on Feb. 20 when mysterious snipers opened fire, killing both police and protesters. As the police retreated, the militants advanced brandishing firearms and other weapons. The confrontation led to significant loss of life, pushing the death toll to around 80 including more than a dozen police.

U.S. diplomats and the mainstream U.S. press immediately blamed Yanukovych for the sniper attack, though the circumstances remain murky to this day and some investigations have suggested that the lethal sniper fire came from buildings controlled by Right Sektor extremists.

To tamp down the worsening violence, a shaken Yanukovych signed a European-brokered deal on Feb. 21, in which he accepted reduced powers and an early election so he could be voted out of office. He also agreed to requests from Vice President Joe Biden to pull back the police.

The precipitous police withdrawal opened the path for the neo-Nazis and other street fighters to seize presidential offices and force Yanukovych and his officials to flee for their lives. The new coup regime was immediately declared “legitimate” by the U.S. State Department with Yanukovych sought on murder charges. Nuland’s favorite, Yatsenyuk, became the new prime minister.

Throughout the crisis, the mainstream U.S. press hammered home the theme of white-hatted protesters versus a black-hatted president. The police were portrayed as brutal killers who fired on unarmed supporters of “democracy.” The good-guy/bad-guy narrative was all the American people heard from the major media.

The New York Times went so far as to delete the slain policemen from the narrative and simply report that the police had killed all those who died in the Maidan. A typical Times report on March 5, 2014, summed up the storyline: “More than 80 protesters were shot to death by the police as an uprising spiraled out of control in mid-February.”

The mainstream U.S. media also sought to discredit anyone who observed the obvious fact that an unconstitutional coup had just occurred. A new theme emerged that portrayed Yanukovych as simply deciding to abandon his government because of the moral pressure from the noble and peaceful Maidan protests.

Any reference to a “coup” was dismissed as “Russian propaganda.” There was a parallel determination in the U.S. media to discredit or ignore evidence that neo-Nazi militias had played an important role in ousting Yanukovych and in the subsequent suppression of anti-coup resistance in eastern and southern Ukraine. That opposition among ethnic-Russian Ukrainians simply became “Russian aggression.”

Nazi symbols on helmets worn by members of Ukraine’s
Azov battalion. (As filmed by a Norwegian film crew
and shown on German TV)

This refusal to notice what was actually a remarkable story – the willful unleashing of Nazi storm troopers on a European population for the first time since World War II – reached absurd levels as The New York Times and The Washington Post buried references to the neo-Nazis at the end of stories, almost as afterthoughts.

The Washington Post went to the extreme of rationalizing Swastikas and other Nazi symbols by quoting one militia commander as calling them “romantic” gestures by impressionable young men. [See’s “Ukraine’s ‘Romantic’ Neo-Nazi Storm Troopers.”]

But today – more than two years after what U.S. and Ukrainian officials like to call “the Revolution of Dignity” – the U.S.-backed Ukrainian government is sinking into dysfunction, reliant on handouts from the IMF and Western governments.

And, in a move perhaps now more symbolic than substantive, Prime Minister Yatsenyuk is stepping down. Yats is no longer the guy.

Investigative reporter Robert Parry broke many of the Iran-Contra stories for The Associated Press and Newsweek in the 1980s. You can buy his latest book, America’s Stolen Narrative, either in print here or as an e-book (from Amazon and