The events leading to the assassination of the Russian Ambassador to Turkey have a long and torturous trail.
The beginning and end are found in President Obama’s attempt to militarily encircle and discredit Russia through massive propaganda and sanctions. Obama built military bases on Russia’s borders; organized a putsch in the Ukraine; launched violent attacks on Russian allies in Libya and Syria; and encircled China, Russia’s ally in Asia.
Obama proceeded to organize Turkey, the EU, Saudi Arabia, Israel and vassal regimes in the Baltic and Balkan countries to dispatch arms, Special Forces and finances to terrorist mercenaries invading Syria, in order to oust Russian bases.
Central to Obama’s anti-Russian legacy was to ensure the election of former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. Obama worked with Clinton for five years to degrade Russia. To continue, Obama worked in tandem with the Clinton electoral machine to defeat Donald Trump because he was opposed to the anti-Russian campaign.
As the electoral campaign proceeded in Trump’s favor, Obama turned to the intelligence apparatus to intervene in the electoral process. In order to secure Clinton’s victory and heighten efforts to overthrow Russia’s elected government, Obama fabricated a massive campaign attributing the revelations of Clinton’s illegal correspondence to Russian hackers working with Trump.
Trump’s defeat of Clinton was a strategic loss to Obama’s efforts to overthrow Putin. Obama, in response, launched the most intense and virulent propaganda blitz against Russia since the early 1950’s. The mass media went 24/7 claiming Russian penetration of the US electoral system; the subversion of US democracy; and ‘decisive’ collaboration between Putin and Trump in determining the election.
Academics, journalists, the CIA and the rest of the intelligence agencies were recruited, primed and launched in the anti-Trump, anti-Russian campaign.
Obama’s campaign against Trump failed. The recount and Electoral College ploys were defeated. The courts, electoral officials and voters decided against Clinton-Obama.
Obama was enraged to the point of mental instability by a series of strategic defeats in wars and elections. The invasions of Iraq and Afghanistan resulted in prolonged losing wars. The Libyan intervention led to unending wars. Israel and its US cohort insulted, humiliated and led Obama by the nose, securing billions in handouts and the appointment of top Zionist officials. Obama’s encirclement and sanctions policy against Russia failed to undermine Putin’s presidency.
Obama faced a legacy of failure, defeats and disgrace.
With Trump’s triumph and Russian-Syrian military success in Aleppo, Obama’s ‘string broke’. He blamed Russia for his failures. He totally ignored the votes that elected Trump. He brushed off the hand counted recount and Court decisions which validated Clinton’s defeat. Obama’s blackmail and coercion of the Electors failed to change the outcome of the Electoral College. The street disruptions and calls to impeach Trump failed to gain traction.
Obama denied reality , embracing a paranoid vision of a deep Russian takeover.
Obama publicly declared he would openly and covertly pursue revenge, retaliation and deadly assaults on Russia.
Obama pressed forward to prevent Trump’s election, preparing to release a CIA fabricated report of the President–elect’s betrayal of America on the eve of his inauguration.
Obama struck at Russia escalating from added sanctions to assassination.
The Russian ambassador to Turkey was assassinated by a Turkish policeman who was a member of the US backed Fethullah Gulen movement. The Gulanist assassin echoed Obama’s propaganda line, accusing Russia of destroying Aleppo and its people.
The US mass media repeated the killer/Obama’s justification of the killing.
The murder and justification happened a few days after Obama promised a ‘secret’ and swift assault on Russia.
Trump sensing Obama’s resort to violent retaliation against Russia, and the likelihood he would turn the gun to ‘Putin’s accomplice’, the President-elect decided to take precautionary measures, he replaced Obama’s secret service with his private security guards.
We live in extraordinarily dangerous times. A deranged violent President is in command of a willing media and an intelligence apparatus ready and willing to obey.
There is little doubt that the murder of the Russian Ambassador will be the beginning of a cycle of violent assassinations. It is certain that Putin and Trump will take the appropriate defensive measures.
With a psychotic, frustrated and failed President refusing to concede defeat, we enter the beginning and most sinister period prior to his exit.
Margaret Thatcher wanted to eradicate cocaine in Peru with moths, according to newly-released documents, which also reveal the then-British government’s top-secret strategy in combating acid house parties and soccer hooligans.
Her peer in the Labour Party, Lord Victor Rothschild, suggested in 1989 that to tackle drug production in Peru, “One might think of aerial sprays, with or without the connivance of the government concerned; and various other methods of introduction, covert as well as overt.”
The moth, Eloria noyesi, is known for its exclusive diet of the coca plant. “While virtually everyone agrees that those who take cocaine or crack, in the various ways available, should be punished, everyone, I think, agrees that it is the ‘drug baron’ who must be mercilessly ‘put down,’” Rothschild also added.
Thatcher found the “most intriguing idea” to be “characteristically brilliant” and an “ingenious solution,” she responded in a letter released Friday by the National Archives in Kew.
However, the plan was never executed because it lacked cooperation from the Peruvian government.
Other declassified documents describe plans to allow law enforcement to attack anti-nuclear “demonstrators or terrorists” and “as a last resort, open fire to prevent a perceived threat of sabotage not only to nuclear warheads but also to the submarine.”
Multiple documents also detail moves against soccer hooligans with the aim of “excluding troublemakers from football grounds,” who represent “a serious blemish on our society” that are “destroying the game as family entertainment.”
Another signature fight from Thatcher revealed in the documents is her war on Acid House parties, the 1980s’ underground equivalent of raves. Private correspondence claims her uncle was “very disturbed” by the parties and that police had a “feeling of collective anger and helplessness” when they were unable to shutdown the raves.
Sound absurd? It is, part of intense Russia bashing, a political and economic assault, risking something more serious.
On New Year’s eve, the neocon/CIA-connected Washington Post published an updated version of its previous fake news story.
The earlier version claimed Russian hackers penetrated the US electric grid – a Big Lie. The new version says it hacked a Vermont utility, citing the usual unnamed US sources – another Big Lie.
WaPo : “(T)he discovery underscores the vulnerabilities of the nation’s electrical grid. And it raises fears in the US government that Russian government hackers are actively trying to penetrate the grid to carry out potential attacks.”
Fact: As usual, when it comes to bashing Russia, claims aren’t backed by verifiable evidence, just fear-mongering hyperbole – media scoundrels like WaPo repeating it without due diligence checking for veracity.
Russia poses no threat to any country – not to America, its electricity grid, Vermont or any other state, city or federal operation.
Claiming it was fake news like all other anti-Russia accusations, not a shred of evidence supporting them.
Claiming “(a) code associated with the Russian hacking operation dubbed Grizzly Steppe by the Obama administration has been detected within the system of a Vermont utility” was willful deception.
Cybersecurity specialists said the code wasn’t Russian. It was an outdated Ukrainian hacking tool. On Friday, Burlington Electric said the malware code was detected during a single laptop scan not connected to its power grid.
A company statement said “(w)e took immediate action to isolate the laptop and alerted federal officials of this finding.”
“Our team is working with federal officials to trace this malware and prevent any other attempts to infiltrate utility systems. We have briefed state officials and will support the investigation fully.”
Blaming Russia for hyped incidents is the usual knee-jerk response, part of longstanding bashing, ongoing now to pressure Trump against normalizing ties, including cooperating with Putin in combating terrorism.
A report on the Vermont incident by cybersecurity firm Wordfence said alleged originating IP addresses provided by US agencies “don’t appear to provide any association with Russia.” They’re “probably used by a wide range of other malicious actors.”
Vermonters can relax. So can Americans in the other 49 states. The Russians aren’t coming. No Russian cyber or other attacks loom.
Claims otherwise are fabricated for political reasons – not legitimate ones.
Stephen Lendman can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. His new book as editor and contributor is titled Flashpoint in Ukraine: How the US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III.
Guardian journalist’s bizarre claim Vladimir Putin’s New Year and Christmas invite is a threat to US diplomats’ children
Reading Western media reactions to Putin’s decision yesterday not to retaliate in kind to Obama’s latest sanctions has been instructive, with the tone extending from the admiring, to the factual, and to the furious.
One comment however stood out as by far the most unpleasant, and it came (unsurprisingly to those who follow him) from Luke Harding in the Guardian :
The statement wished Obama, Trump and the American people a happy new year. It further invited “all the children of American diplomats” to visit the Kremlin’s festive Christmas tree. Instead of playing the Grinch, Putin had taken on the role of Ded Moroz, Russia’s answer to Father Christmas. One Russian MP on Vesti TV said Obama was Bad Santa. It was also a subtle reminder, for those who were able to decode it, that the FSB – the KGB’s successor – has precise information about the children of US embassy personnel. Russia’s foreign ministry on Friday tartly denied reports that Moscow was to close the Anglo-American school, attended by diplomatic kids, and the offspring of bankers and oil workers. (bold italics added)
The claim that the Russians planned to close the Anglo-American school was indeed furiously denied by the Russians after it circulated for a short time in the media.
Luke Harding nonetheless conflates this claim – which the Russians of course denied, and which almost certainly did not originate either with the senior officials of Russia’s Foreign Ministry or with the Kremlin – with President Putin’s invitation to the children of US diplomats to attend New Year and Christmas parties in the Kremlin, to construe a threat by the Russians to US diplomats through their children (“the FSB – the KGB’s successor – has precise information about the children of US embassy personnel”).
This threat is however so “subtle” that only those in the know – including of course Luke Harding himself – are “able to decode it”.
That this is utterly paranoid stuff, turning an invitation to a party into something sinister, should not need saying. What does Luke Harding think the FSB might do with the “precise information about the children of US embassy personnel” it supposedly has? That this sort of paranoia gets published in the Guardian unfortunately shows how mainstream it has become. I hope it won’t deter any US diplomats from keeping their children in Moscow, or from letting them go to the parties to which President Putin has invited them.
Caracas – Venezuela’s Supreme Court (TSJ) has blocked an attempt by Congress to oust President Nicolas Maduro over the allegation that he has “abandoned his post”.
Earlier in January, the opposition-controlled National Assembly (AN) approved an agreement stating that the president should be dismissed, accusing him of being responsible for a “serious rupture of the constitutional and democratic order,” the “devastation” of the country’s economy, and human rights abuses.
Opposition lawmakers argued that the declaration was based on Article 233 of the Bolivarian Constitution, which outlines the circumstances under which the president can be considered to have permanently vacated the position.
However, on Monday, Venezuela’s highest court released a statement confirming that there were no constitutional grounds for President Maduro’s removal from office, and criticised the AN’s interpretation of the article as “fraudulent and insurrectional”.
“The President of the Republic, citizen Nicolas Maduro Moros, has not been absent, nor separated in any moment, from the exercise of his post, nor has he ceased to exercise his constitutional responsibilities since the beginning of his mandate, which is a public, well-known and communicable indisputable fact,” reads the declaration.
In the official ruling, the high court describes opposition lawmakers’ actions as an attempt to set in motion a “coup d’etat” against the president of the Republic and to “subvert the established constitutional order”.
“(This) responds to their interest in destabilisation, with the only intention of changing the legitimately constituted government through an unconstitutional procedure,” continues the top judicial body.
TSJ judges also went on to reprimand the opposition coalition, the Democratic Unity Roundtable, for having continuously flouted the court’s previous orders demanding that congress remove three opposition legislators pending investigations into voter fraud. The court has released several statements declaring the National Assembly to be in contempt of court and consequently void, as well as warning the legislative body not to overstep its constitutional boundaries.
According to the Constitution, the Venezuelan president can be considered to have “abandoned his post” through his death, resignation, destitution by the TSJ or his “physical or mental incapacity” as corroborated by a medical committee.
Nonetheless, opposition legislators have prioritised removing Maduro from office through a variety of initiatives since winning a congressional majority in the legislative elections of December 2015.
Our reporter Charlotte d’Ornellas comes back from Aleppo.
What she saw there is not what western mainstream media have been saying in the last weeks.
This one was doing the rounds yesterday.
From the BBC:
Migrating birds are arriving at their breeding grounds earlier as global temperatures rise, a study has found.
Birds have reached their summer breeding grounds on average about one day earlier per degree of increasing global temperatures, according to the research by Edinburgh University.
The study looked at hundreds of species across five continents.
It is hoped it will help scientists predict how different species may respond to future environmental change.
Reaching their summer breeding grounds at the wrong time – even by a few days – may cause birds to miss out on maximum availability of vital resources such as food and nesting places.
Late arrival to breeding grounds may, in turn, affect the timing of offspring hatching and their chances of survival.
Long-distance migrants, which are shown to be less responsive to rising temperatures, may suffer most as other birds gain advantage by arriving at breeding grounds ahead of them.
Flowering and breeding
Takuji Usui, of Edinburgh University’s school of biological sciences, said: “Many plant and animal species are altering the timing of activities associated with the start of spring, such as flowering and breeding.
“Now we have detailed insights into how the timing of migration is changing and how this change varies across species.
“These insights may help us predict how well migratory birds keep up with changing conditions on their breeding grounds.”
The study examined how various species, which take flight in response to cues such as changing seasonal temperatures and food availability, have altered their behaviour over time and with increasing temperatures.
The researchers examined records of migrating bird species dating back almost 300 years.
The study drew upon records from amateur enthusiasts and scientists, including notes from 19th-century American naturalist Henry David Thoreau.
Species that migrate huge distances – such as the swallow and pied flycatcher – and those with shorter migrations – such as the lapwing and pied wagtail – were included in the research.
The study, published in Journal of Animal Ecology, was supported by the Natural Environment Research Council.
So, let’s get this straight.
One day earlier for each degree of global warming. That means birds are migrating a whole day earlier than during the 19thC.
And we are supposed to be concerned about this?
In fact, given the inter-annual variability, I simply do not believe that these results have any statistical significance whatsoever. The error margins must dwarf the results.
But here’s the thing. Birds have been adapting to changing climate for millennia. It is not the climate that forces them to do anything. Quite the reverse in fact. Birds will adopt the strategy that is most beneficial for them.
The longer they can stay at their summer breeding grounds, the better it is for them, as it allows more time for them to raise their chicks.
The project was funded by the NERC. Isn’t it time we stopped wasting taxpayers’ money on such rubbish?
In the world of climate science, the skeptics are coming in from the cold.
Researchers who see global warming as something less than a planet-ending calamity believe the incoming Trump administration may allow their views to be developed and heard. This didn’t happen under the Obama administration, which denied that a debate even existed. Now, some scientists say, a more inclusive approach – and the billions of federal dollars that might support it – could be in the offing.
“Here’s to hoping the Age of Trump will herald the demise of climate change dogma, and acceptance of a broader range of perspectives in climate science and our policy options,” Georgia Tech scientist Judith Curry wrote this month at her popular Climate Etc. blog.
William Happer, professor emeritus of physics at Princeton University and a member of the National Academy of Sciences, is similarly optimistic. “I think we’re making progress,” Happer said. “I see reassuring signs.”
Despite harsh criticism of their contrarian views, a few scientists like Happer and Curry have pointed to evidence that global warming is less pronounced than predicted. They have also argued that this slighter warming would bring positive developments along with problems. For the first time in years, skeptics believe they can find a path out of the wilderness into which they’ve been cast by the “scientific consensus.” As much as they desire a more open-minded reception by their colleagues, they are hoping even more that the spigot of government research funding – which dwarfs all other sources – will trickle their way.
President-elect Donald Trump, who has called global warming a “hoax,” has chosen for key cabinet posts men whom the global warming establishment considers lapdogs of the oil and gas industry: former Texas Gov. Rick Perry to run the Energy Department; Attorney General Scott Pruitt of Oklahoma to run the Environmental Protection Agency; and Exxon chief executive Rex Tillerson as secretary of state.
But while general policy may be set at the cabinet level, significant and concrete changes would likely be spelled out below those three – among the very bureaucrats the Trump transition team might have had in mind when, in a move some saw as intimidation, it sent a questionnaire to the Energy Department this month (later disavowed) trying to determine who worked on global warming.
It isn’t certain that federal employees working in various environmental or energy sector-related agencies would willingly implement rollbacks of regulations, let alone a redirection of scientific climate research, but the latter prospect heartens the skeptical scientists. They cite an adage: You only get answers to the questions you ask.
“In reality, it’s the government, not the scientists, that asks the questions,” said David Wojick, a longtime government consultant who has closely tracked climate research spending since 1992. If a federal agency wants models that focus on potential sea-level rise, for example, it can order them up. But it can also shift the focus to how warming might boost crop yields or improve drought resistance.
While it could take months for such expanded fields of research to emerge, a wider look at the possibilities excites some scientists. Happer, for one, feels emboldened in ways he rarely has throughout his career because, for many years, he knew his iconoclastic climate conclusions would hurt his professional prospects.
When asked if he would voice dissent on climate change if he were a younger, less established physicist, he said: “Oh, no, definitely not. I held my tongue for a long time because friends told me I would not be elected to the National Academy of Sciences if I didn’t toe the alarmists’ company line.”
That sharp disagreements are real in the field may come as a shock to many people, who are regularly informed that climate science is settled and those who question this orthodoxy are akin to Holocaust deniers. Nevertheless, new organizations like the CO2 Coalition, founded in 2015, suggest the debate is more evenly matched intellectually than is commonly portrayed. In addition to Happer, the CO2 Coalition’s initial members include scholars with ties to world-class institutions like MIT, Harvard and Rockefeller University. The coalition also features members of the American Geophysical Union and the American Meteorology Society, along with policy experts from the Manhattan Institute, the George C. Marshall Institute and Tufts University’s Fletcher School.
With such voices joining in, the debate over global warming might shift. Until now, it’s normally portrayed as enlightened scholars vs. anti-science simpletons. A more open debate could shift the discussion to one about global warming’s extent and root causes.
Should a scientific and research funding realignment occur, it could do more than shatter what some see as an orthodoxy stifling free inquiry. Bjorn Lomborg, who has spent years analyzing potential solutions to global warming, believes that a more expansive outlook toward research is necessary because too much government funding has become expensive and ineffective corporate welfare. Although not a natural scientist, the social scientist Lomborg considers climate change real but not cataclysmic.
“Maybe now we’ll have a smarter conversation about what actually works,” Lomborg told RealClearInvestigations. “What has been proposed costs a fortune and does very little. With more space opening up, we can invest more into research and development into green energy. We don’t need subsidies to build something. They’ve been throwing a lot of money at projects that supposedly will cut carbon emissions but actually accomplish very little. That’s not a good idea. The funding should go to universities and research institutions; you don’t need to give it to companies to do it.”
Such new opportunities might, in theory, calm a field tossed by acrimony and signal a détente in climate science. Yet most experts are skeptical that a kumbaya moment is at hand. The mutual bitterness instilled over the years, the research money at stake, and the bristling hostility toward Trump’s appointees could actually exacerbate tensions.
“I think that the vast ‘middle’ will want and seek a more collegial atmosphere,” Georgia Tech’s Curry told RealClearInvestigations. “But there will be some hardcore people (particularly on the alarmed side) whose professional reputation, funding, media exposure, influence etc. depends on cranking up the alarm.”
Michael E. Mann, another climate change veteran, is also doubtful about a rapprochement. Mann, director of the Earth System Science Center at Penn State and author of the “hockey stick” graph, which claims a sharp uptick in global temperatures over the past century, believes ardently that global warming is a dire threat. He concluded a Washington Post op-ed this month with this foreboding thought: “The fate of the planet hangs in the balance.” Mann acknowledges a brutal war of words has engulfed climate science. But in an e-mail exchange with RealClearInvestigations, he blamed opponents led by “the Koch brothers” for the polarization.
Mann did hint, however, there may be some room for discussion.
“In that poisonous environment it is difficult to have the important, more nuanced and worthy debate about what to do about the problem,” he wrote. “There are Republicans like Arnold Schwarzenegger, Bob Inglis and George Shultz trying to create space for that discussion, and that gives me hope. But given that Donald Trump is appointing so many outright climate deniers to key posts in this administration, I must confess that I – and many of my fellow scientists – are rather concerned.”
Neither side of the debate has been immune from harsh and sinister attacks. Happer said he stepped down from the active faculty at Princeton in part “to deal with all this craziness.” Happer and Mann, like several other climate scientists, have gotten death threats. They provided RealClearInvestigations with some of the e-mails and voice messages they have received.
“You are an educated Nazi and should hang from the neck,” a critic wrote Happer in October 2014.
“You and your colleagues who have promoted this scandal ought to be shot, quartered and fed to the pigs along with your whole damn families,” one e-mailed Mann in Dec. 2009.
Similar threats have bedeviled scientists and writers across the climate research spectrum, from Patrick Michaels, a self-described “lukewarmer” who dealt with death threats at the University of Virginia before moving to the Cato Institute, to Rajendra Pachauri, who protested anonymous death threats while heading the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC).
Putting such ugliness aside, some experts doubt that the science will improve even if the Trump administration asks new research questions and funding spreads to myriad proposals. Richard Lindzen, the Alfred P. Sloan Professor of Meteorology at MIT and a member of the National Academy of Sciences who has long questioned climate change orthodoxy, is skeptical that a sunnier outlook is upon us.
“I actually doubt that,” he said. Even if some of the roughly $2.5 billion in taxpayer dollars currently spent on climate research across 13 different federal agencies now shifts to scientists less invested in the calamitous narrative, Lindzen believes groupthink has so corrupted the field that funding should be sharply curtailed rather than redirected.
“They should probably cut the funding by 80 to 90 percent until the field cleans up,” he said. “Climate science has been set back two generations, and they have destroyed its intellectual foundations.”
The field is cluttered with entrenched figures who must toe the established line, he said, pointing to a recent congressional report that found the Obama administration got a top Department of Energy scientist fired and generally intimidated the staff to conform with its politicized position on climate change.
“Remember this was a tiny field, a backwater, and then suddenly you increased the funding to billions and everyone got into it,” Lindzen said. “Even in 1990 no one at MIT called themselves a ‘climate scientist,’ and then all of a sudden everyone was. They only entered it because of the bucks; they realized it was a gravy train. You have to get it back to the people who only care about the science.”