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Pentagon chief calls on Saudi crown prince to cease Yemen aggression

Press TV – March 22, 2018

US Defense Secretary Jim Mattis has called upon Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman to find an “urgent” political solution to the devastating three-year-old conflict in neighboring Yemen, which has claimed the lives of thousands of people and left the impoverished nation’s infrastructure in ruins.

Mattis and bin Salman met at the Pentagon on Thursday as the de facto ruler of the Arab kingdom is on a tour of the United States, which began earlier this week with a White House visit.

“As you discussed with President (Donald) Trump on Tuesday, we must also reinvigorate urgent efforts to seek a peaceful resolution to the civil war in Yemen and we support you in this regard,” the US defense secretary told his Saudi counterpart.

“We are going to end this war; that is the bottom line. And we are going to end it on positive terms for the people of Yemen but also security for the nations in the peninsula,” Mattis added.

The Saudi crown prince, speaking through a translator, told Mattis that cooperation between the Pentagon and Saudi Arabia has “improved tremendously” of late.

The remarks came only two days after the US Senate killed a bipartisan bid seeking to end US support for Saudi Arabia’s aerial bombardment campaign in Yemen.

Mattis had lobbied Congress to reject the bill, claiming that restrictions could increase civilian casualties in Yemen, jeopardize the so-called counter-terrorism cooperation between Washington and Riyadh, and “reduce” Washington’s “influence with the Saudis.”

About 14,000 people have been killed since the onset of Saudi Arabia’s military campaign against Yemen in March 2015. Much of the Arabian Peninsula country’s infrastructure, including hospitals, schools and factories, has been reduced to rubble due to the war.

The United Nations says a record 22.2 million people are in need of food aid, including 8.4 million threatened by severe hunger.

A high-ranking UN aid official recently warned against the “catastrophic” living conditions in Yemen, stating that there is a growing risk of famine and cholera there.

“After three years of conflict, conditions in Yemen are catastrophic,” John Ging, UN director of aid operations, told the UN Security Council on February 27.

He added, “People’s lives have continued unraveling. Conflict has escalated since November driving an estimated 100,000 people from their homes.”

Ging further noted that cholera has infected 1.1 million people in Yemen since last April, and a new outbreak of diphtheria has occurred in the war-ravaged Arab country since 1982.

US OKs $1bn in Saudi military deals

Meanwhile, the US State Department said in a statement it had approved military contracts with Saudi Arabia worth over $1 billion.

According to the State Department, 6,600 TOW 2B anti-tank missiles are to be supplied under the biggest contract, which is worth $670 million.

A $106 million deal for helicopter maintenance and another contract for ground vehicle parts worth $300 million were also approved on Thursday.

The State Department said it had notified the US Congress of the possible military equipment contracts.

“This proposed sale will support US foreign policy and national security objectives by improving the security of a friendly country which has been, and continues to be, an important force for political stability and economic growth in the Middle East,” the statement said.

The three contracts are highly expected to be approved by Congress in the wake of the Senate’s Tuesday rejection of the bill to end US support for the Saudi war.

A report by the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) revealed earlier this month that the US has increased its arms sales by 25 percent over the past five years.

According to the SIPRI report, Saudi Arabia increased its arms purchases by 225 percent over the past five years, importing 98 percent of its weapons from the US and EU countries.

March 22, 2018 Posted by | Illegal Occupation, Militarism, War Crimes | , , , | Leave a comment

Trump replaces national security adviser McMaster with John Bolton

Sputnik – March 22, 2018

HR McMaster will exit the role of National Security Adviser to United States President Donald Trump. Former UN Ambassador John Bolton, a prominent war hawk, will replace McMaster, Trump announced on Twitter Thursday evening.

It had been reported for weeks that McMaster and Trump were butting heads and that the US Army lieutenant general was on the brink of being removed. McMaster is the most recent of more than two dozen officials to be fired or resign from the Trump administration since the president took office 14 months ago.

“After thirty-four years of service to our nation, I am requesting retirement from the US Army effective this summer,” McMaster said in a Thursday statement, adding, “I am thankful to President Donald J. Trump for the opportunity to serve him and our nation as National Security Adviser.” McMaster will leave public service after retiring from the military.

Bolton will be Trump’s third national security adviser, following the very brief tenure of Iran hawk Michael Flynn and now McMaster.

Bolton was a major proponent of the US’ 2003 invasion of Iraq and an advocate for the overthrow of leader Saddam Hussein, positions he still defends more than a decade later.

He wrote an op-ed in the Wall Street Journal in late February outlining “the legal case for striking North Korea first.” Historian Gareth Porter told Radio Sputnik’s Loud & Clear last week that Bolton’s nomination would likely lead to a White House that is more eager to pursue a war with Iran. “During the [George W.] Bush administration,” when Bolton was the US ambassador to the UN, “there was a plan for war with Iran,” Porter said.

Like Trump, Bolton opposes the multilateral 2015 Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, the milestone agreement intended to provide limits to and transparency on Iran’s nuclear program in exchange for sanctions relief. Trump in January recertified the deal for what he said would be the last 120-day period without major changes.

Speaking to reporters at the White House while Saudi Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman was visiting this week, Trump stated, “The Iran deal is coming up. It’s probably another month or so, and you’re going to see what I do.” Former Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, one of the voices said to have counseled Trump that scrapping the JCPOA was a bad idea, was recently dismissed from his position in favor of former CIA Director Mike Pompeo.

Since his time in the Bush administration, Bolton has worked as a foreign policy fellow at the American Enterprise Institute. He is a Fox News contributor and frequently appears on TV as a conservative pundit.

March 22, 2018 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Militarism, War Crimes, Wars for Israel | , , , , | Leave a comment

Real concern should be Singh’s support of Canadian violence

By Yves Engler · March 20, 2018

We should be concerned about Jagmeet Singh’s support for political violence. But not the stuff that’s making news. While the media makes much of the new NDP head’s ties/indifference to Sikh violence, they’ve ignored Singh’s leadership of a party/community that has repeatedly backed Canadian aggression.

In a Rabble story on the controversy, Karl Nerenberg described Singh as the “leader of a party that has throughout its history favoured peaceful and non-violent solutions.” As such, Nerenberg called on the NDP leader to “make a stronger statement against any use of violence in furtherance of Sikh goals.”

While not downplaying the terrible human loss in the 1985 Air India bombing or disagreeable aspects of the Khalistan movement, it’s more salient to know Singh’s position on Canadian violence. Contrary to Nerenberg’s claim, the NDP has repeatedly supported Canadian aggression. Seven years ago the NDP wholeheartedly endorsed bombing Libya, a quarter century ago it applauded the bombing of Serbia and in 1950 it cheerlead Canadian participation in the Korean War. At the beginning of the century important elements of the party backed Canada’s deployment to Afghanistan and the NDP was ambivalent towards Canadian assisted violence in Haiti.

After the Communists took control of China in 1949 the US tried to encircle the country. They supported Chiang Kai-shek in Taiwan, built military bases in Japan, backed a right-wing dictator in Thailand and tried to establish a pro-Western state in Vietnam. The success of China’s nationalist revolution also spurred the 1950-1953 Korean War in which eight Canadian warships and 27,000 Canadian troops participated. The war left as many as four million dead.

The NDP’s predecessor, the CCF, endorsed the US-led (though UN sanctioned) war in Korea. Deputy leader and party spokesperson Stanley Knowles immediately endorsed the deployment of Canadian naval units to the Western Pacific, which the government sent in case they “might be of assistance to the United Nations and Korea.” Before Ottawa committed ground troops the CCF Executive Council called for them. The CCF started to shift its position on the Korean War when Washington had the UN condemn Chinese “aggression” six months into the fighting.

The NDP backed Canada’s significant contribution to NATO’s 1999 bombing of the former Yugoslavia. Contravening international law, the 78-day bombing campaign killed hundreds and spurred the ethnic cleansing of Albanian Kosovars NATO officials claimed to be curbing. The party only turned critical over a month after the bombing began.

Important elements within the NDP initially supported Canada’s October 2001 invasion of Afghanistan. Two days after the George W. Bush administration declared war, NDP leader Alexa McDonough and defence critic Peter Stoffer issued a “joint statement”, saying they “completely back the men and women in the Canadian military assigned to the U.S. coalition.”

The NDP was wishy-washy on the February 29, 2004, US/France/Canada coup in Haiti and violence that followed. In the days after the US/France/Canada military invasion NDP foreign critic Svend Robinson called for an investigation into Jean-Bertrand Aristide’s removal and asked if “regime change in Haiti” was discussed at the January 2003 Ottawa Initiative on Haiti, where high level US, Canadian and French officials deliberated on overthrowing the elected President. But, subsequent foreign critic Alexa McDonough largely stayed mum as Canada offered military, policing, diplomatic and financial support to a dictatorship and UN force that killed thousands violently suppressing Port au Prince’s poor (pro-Aristide) neighborhoods.

In 2011 the party supported two House of Commons votes endorsing the bombing of Libya. “It’s appropriate for Canada to be a part of this effort to try to stop Gadhafi from attacking his citizens as he has been threatening to do,’’ said party leader Jack Layton. But, the NATO bombing campaign was justified based on exaggerations and outright lies about the Gaddafi regime’s human rights violations as I discuss in detail in The Ugly Canadian: Stephen Harper’s foreign policy. Additionally, NATO forces explicitly contravened the UN resolutions sanctioning a no-fly zone by dispatching troops and expanding the bombing far beyond protecting civilians. Canada also defied UN resolutions 1970 and 1973 by selling drones to the rebels. After Gaddafi was savagely killed, NDP leader Nycole Turmel released a statement noting, “the future of Libya now belongs to all Libyans. Our troops have done a wonderful job in Libya over the past few months.”

Beyond this history, there are good reasons to fear Singh will support Canadian aggression. During the leadership race he allied himself with pro-US Empire MP Hélène Laverdière and subsequently reappointed the former Canadian diplomat as NDP foreign critic. At last month’s party convention he mobilized supporters to suppress debate on the widely endorsed Palestine Resolution. Singh has also said little (or nothing) about Canada’s new defence policy, which includes a substantial boost to military spending and offensive capabilities.

In the interests of a first do no harm Canadian foreign policy, it’s time for a comprehensive discussion of Singh’s views on political violence.

March 22, 2018 Posted by | Militarism, Timeless or most popular, War Crimes | , | 1 Comment

Why the UK, the EU and the US Gang-Up on Russia

By James Petras :: 03.20.2018

Introduction: For the greater part of a decade the US, the UK and the EU have been carrying out a campaign to undermine and overthrow the Russia government and in particular to oust President Putin. Fundamental issues are at stake including the real possibility of a nuclear war.
The most recent western propaganda campaign and one of the most virulent is the charge launched by the UK regime of Prime Minister Theresa May. The Brits have claimed that Russian secret agents conspired to poison a former Russian double-agent and his daughter in England, threatening the sovereignty and safety of the British people. No evidence has ever been presented. Instead the UK expelled Russian diplomats and demands harsher sanctions, to increase tensions. The UK and its US and EU patrons are moving toward a break in relations and a military build-up.

A number of fundamental questions arise regarding the origins and growing intensity of this anti-Russian animus.

Why do the Western regimes now feel Russia is a greater threat then in the past? Do they believe Russia is more vulnerable to Western threats or attacks? Why do the Western military leaders seek to undermine Russia’s defenses? Do the US economic elites believe it is possible to provoke an economic crisis and the demise of President Putin’s government? What is the strategic goal of Western policymakers? Why has the UK regime taken the lead in the anti-Russian crusade via the fake toxin accusations at this time?

This paper is directed at providing key elements to address these questions.

The Historical Context for Western Aggression

Several fundamental historical factors dating back to the 1990’s account for the current surge in Western hostility to Russia.

First and foremost, during the 1990’s the US degraded Russia, reducing it to a vassal state, and imposing itself as a unipolar state.

Secondly, Western elites pillaged the Russian economy, seizing and laundering hundreds of billions of dollars. Wall Street and City of London banks and overseas tax havens were the main beneficiaries

Thirdly, the US seized and took control of the Russian electoral process, and secured the fraudulent “election” of Yeltsin.

Fourthly, the West degraded Russia’s military and scientific institutions and advanced their armed forces to Russia’s borders.

Fifthly, the West insured that Russia was unable to support its allies and independent governments throughout Europe, Asia, Africa and Latin America. Russia was unable to aid its allies in the Ukraine, Cuba, North Korea, Libya etc.

With the collapse of the Yeltsin regime and the election of President Putin, Russia regained its sovereignty, its economy recovered, its armed forces and scientific institutes were rebuilt and strengthened. Poverty was sharply reduced and Western backed gangster capitalists were constrained, jailed or fled mostly to the UK and the US.

Russia’s historic recovery under President Putin and its gradual international influence shattered US pretense to rule over a unipolar world. Russia’s recovery and control of its economic resources lessened US dominance, especially of its oil and gas fields.

As Russia consolidated its sovereignty and advanced economically, socially, politically and militarily, the West increased its hostility in an effort to roll-back Russia to the Dark Ages of the 1990’s.

The US launched numerous coups and military intervention and fraudulent elections to surround and isolate Russia. The Ukraine, Iraq, Syria, Libya, Yemen and Russian allies in Central Asia were targeted. NATO military bases proliferated.

Russia’s economy was targeted: sanctions were directed at its imports and exports. President Putin was subject to a virulent Western media propaganda campaign. US NGO’s funded opposition parties and politicians.

The US-EU rollback campaign failed.

The encirclement campaign failed.

The Ukraine fragmented – Russia allies took control of the East; Crimean voted for unification with Russia. Syria joined with Russia to defeat armed US vassals. Russia turned to China’s multi-lateral trade, transport and financial networks.

As the entire US unipolar fantasy dissolved it provoked deep resentment, animosity and a systematic counter-attack. The US’s costly and failed war on terror became a dress rehearsal for the economic and ideological war against the Kremlin. Russia’s historical recovery and defeat of Western rollback intensified the ideological and economic war.

The UK poison plot was concocted to heighten economic tensions and prepare the western public for heightened military confrontations.

Russia is not a threat to the West: it is recovering its sovereignty in order to further a multi-polar world. President Putin is not an “aggressor” but he refuses to allow Russia to return to vassalage.

President Putin is immensely popular in Russia and hated by the US precisely because he is the opposition of Yeltsin – he has created a flourishing economy; he resists sanctions and defends Russia’s borders and allies.


In a summary response to the opening questions.

1) The Western regimes recognize that Russia is a threat to their global dominance; they know that Russia is no threat to invade the EU, North America or their vassals.

2) Western regimes believe they can topple Russia via economic warfare including sanctions. In fact Russia has become more self-reliant and has diversified its trading partners, especially China, and even includes Saudi Arabia and other Western allies.

The Western propaganda campaign has failed to turn Russian voters against Putin. In the March 19, 2018 Presidential election voter participation increased to 67%. Vladimir Putin secured a record 77% majority. President Putin is politically stronger than ever.

Russia’s display of advanced nuclear and other advanced weaponry has had a major deterrent effect especially among US military leaders, making it clear that Russia is not vulnerable to attack.

The UK has attempted to unify and gain importance with the EU and the US via the launch of its anti-Russia toxic conspiracy. Prime Minister May has failed. Brexit will force the UK to break with the EU.

President Trump will not replace the EU as a substitute trading partner. While the EU and Washington may back the UK crusade against Russia they will pursue their own trade agenda; which does not include the UK.

In a word, the UK, the EU and the US are ganging-up on Russia, for diverse historic and contemporary reasons. The UK exploitation of the anti-Russian conspiracy is a temporary ploy to join the gang but will not change its inevitable global decline and the break-up of the UK.

Russia will remain a global power. It will continue under the leadership of President Putin. The Western powers will divide and bugger their neighbors – and decide it is their better judgment to accept and work within a multi-polar world.

March 21, 2018 Posted by | Economics, Fake News, Mainstream Media, Warmongering, Militarism, Russophobia, Timeless or most popular | , , , , | Leave a comment

Cancer, George Monbiot and Nuclear Weapons Test Fallout

By Chris Busby | CounterPunch | March 20, 2018

George Monbiot, who has now been diagnosed with prostate cancer at the young age of 55, was therefore born in 1963, at the peak of the atmospheric test fallout. He is thus a peak exposed (at risk) member of a cohort of those exposed in the womb to the fallout (1959-63) and currently suffering the consequences of exposure to Strontium-90 in the milk, and (measured) in the childrens’ bones.

In his article in the Guardian, he says that he has always done all the healthy things, done lots of exercise, eaten vegetables, didn’t smoke or drink, all that stuff. He is clearly puzzled about being singled out by the three ladies. But the cause was something that he had no control over, and neither had anyone else who was born in the fallout period. George writes that he is happy. This insane response to his predicament, (which I personally am not happy about despite his intemperate attacks on me in his Guardian column and blogs) must go alongside his equally insane response about the Fukushima events where he publicised his road-to-Damascus conversion to nuclear power.

The effect of the genetic damage of the fallout on babies can be seen in the graph below, Fig 1, taken from a recent paper I published (Busby C (2017) Radiochemical Genotoxicity Risk and Absorbed Dose. Res Rep Toxi. Vol.1 No.1:1.).  The babies that did not die were just those with insufficient genetic damage to kill, but this damage would have affected them in later life in various ways. The most measurable effect (apart from genetic defects and congenital diseases) is higher cancer risk which is presented as early cancer onset. The issue of the 1959-63 cancer cohort was discussed in my 1995 book Wings of Death, and a letter I published in 1994 in the British Medical Journal (BMJ). The issue is one of Absorbed Dose. If internal exposure to radionuclides like Strontium-90 and Uranium-238 and Uranium-235 bind to DNA, which is the target for genetic damage, then Dose, which is an average quantity over kilograms of tissue, is an unsafe way of quantifying genetic damage. The issue of genetic damage from radioactive pollution was first raised in 1950 by Herman Muller, the Nobel Prize winning geneticist who discovered the effects of radiation, but his warnings were ignored, though they are now found to be accurate.

The serious effects of internal radionuclide exposures on Prostate Cancer were revealed in a study of UK Atomic Energy Agency workers also published in 1993 in the BMJ (Fraser P, Carpenter L, Maconochie N, Higgins C, Booth M and Beral V (1993) Cancer mortality and morbidity in employees of the United Kingdom Atomic Energy Authority 1946-86. Brit. J. Cancer 67 615-624.) This paper showed a 2-fold excess cancer risk in workers who had been monitored for internal radionuclides versus those who had not been. Prostate cancer mortality was significantly high. Although later cover-up studies by the nuclear industry, using a larger cohort reduced this effect for prostate cancer, the internal/ external exposure result for all cancers has not been satisfactorily followed up.

Fig 1. First day neonatal mortality USA shows the effects of the fallout. Because of advances in medicine and better social conditions, infant mortality was falling everywhere. But as soon as the atmospheric tests began, rates went up in time with the fallout. 1st day neonatal mortality is a measure of congenital damage: the baby survives in the mother by using the mothers’ oxygenation and other support but because the babies own organs are damaged and it cannot survive after birth. Strontium-90 was measured in bone where it built up to a peak in 1964. It will also have attached to chromosomes due to its affinity for DNA.

The fallout cohort is now entering the cancer bracket and these people are driving up the cancer rates in the Northern hemisphere, especially for breast cancer and prostate cancer. I have been studying this group since 1995, but now my predictions are appearing in the data.

But the true picture of the fallout effects is even more scary. Not only are the babies born over the peak fallout period, like George, at higher risk of more and earlier cancer, but it is now emerging that their children, born around 1980- 1990 are carrying the same genetic (or rather genomic) curse. I am in the process of putting together a scientific paper on this. There is a sudden increase in cancer rates in young people aged 25-35 which began after 2008. This is an extraordinary development. The finding was confirmed for colon cancer in the USA in a paper published recently in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute (Rebecca L. Siegel, Stacey A. Fedewa, William F. Anderson, Kimberly D. Miller, Jiemin Ma, Philip S. Rosenberg, Ahmedin Jemal Colorectal Cancer Incidence Patterns in the United States, 1974–2013 JNCI J Natl Cancer Inst (2017) 109(8): djw322). The authors were unable to explain their findings of increases in colon cancer in young people but decreasing colon cancer rates in older people. They were “puzzled”. The explanation is simple. These were children born to those who were themselves born during the fallout and genomically damaged at birth. The damage is passed to the children (and will be in turn passed to theirs and so on). The effect is clear also in the England and Wales data.

So, for the logical positivists, let’s have a look at the prostate cancer data in England and Wales.

In Table 1 below I show some data from the official ONS government annual reports on prostate cancer incidence in some selected years from 1974 to 2015.


No argument there then. The amazing thing is that there are huge amounts of money received and spent on cancer research: but no-one looks at the cause. Or rather that those who do look at the cause are attacked and marginalised and their work is not reported.

For example, and relevant here, are the serious genetic effects of small dose internal exposures in Europe after Chernobyl reviewed by Prof Inge Schmitz-Feuerhake, Dr Sebastian Pflugbeil and myself in a peer review publication in 2016 (Schmitz-Feuerhake, Busby C, Pflugbeil P  Genetic Radiation Risks-A Neglected Topic in the Low Dose Debate. Environmental Health and Toxicology.  2016. 31Article ID e2016001. .) You would think that this evidence, which was reported in the peer review literature from 20 studies from countries all over Europe, might make it into one of the newspapers. But nothing.

My attempts to draw attention to these internal genetic damage issues have also been ignored or dismissed by the British establishment. This year, in September, I was to have presented this evidence to British Government Minister Richard Harrington at a meeting of the NGOs and the government at Church House Westminster. My flight from Sweden was sabotaged but I made it to the meeting nevertheless, to find that the Minister had made some excuse, and had not come. )

At the meeting, the government radiation expert committee members (COMARE) refused to consider anything I said.

This behaviour by the British can be compared with the Swedish Environmental Court in Stockholm to which I had been presenting the same findings the previous week. In January 2018, the 8 judges of the Swedish Court told the Swedish government that they must not permit the development of the nuclear waste facility at Forsmark. This landmark decision was also omitted from any newspapers in the UK, which itself is currently busy trying to find a local council they can bribe to allow them to bury nuclear waste somewhere in England and (more probably) Wales.

When I presented the same genetic damage evidence in the nuclear test veteran case in the Royal Courts of Justice in 2016, I submitted reports by 4 eminent radiation experts, including Prof Schmitz-Feuerhake/ All gave evidence under cross examination. We filed the evidence of genetic damage in the Test Veteran children: a 10-fold excess risk for congenital malformations and in the grandchildren 8-fold. The British Judge, Sir Nicholas Blake, refused to listen to any of this evidence and dismissed our experts. Blake found for the Ministry of Defence. I am taking a new Test Veteran case this summer. We shall see what happens.

But no surprise about judge Blake. In a recent survey of judges in Europe, it was found that Britain was only exceeded by Albania in the percentage of judges (45%) who reported that their decisions had been made at the direction of the establishment. The lowest rates of interference with judges was found (1%)  in—guess where—Norway, Sweden and Denmark.

It seems that we live in a corrupt society here in Britain and I am ashamed to be part of this State which has poisoned its citizens consistently since 1945 and continues to do so, and to cover it all up, aided by dishonest scientists and celebrity reporters like George Monbiot. Those who have a magical view of events might delight in thinking that George has received his just due; for myself I just hope that this may make him look into the issue more deeply and change his mind about the effects of radioactive contamination.

Dr Chris Busby is the Scientific Secretary of the European Committee on Radiation Riskand the author of Uranium and Health – The Health Effects of Exposure to Uranium and Uranium Weapons Fallout (Documents of the ECRR 2010 No 2, Brussels, 2010). For details and current CV see For accounts of his work see and

March 20, 2018 Posted by | Environmentalism, Fake News, Mainstream Media, Warmongering, Militarism, Nuclear Power, Science and Pseudo-Science, Timeless or most popular | , | Leave a comment

US & South Korea to start massive joint military drills on April 1

RT | March 20, 2018

Following a months-long pause in military drills and despite a thaw in relations between Seoul and Pyongyang, South Korea and the US will resume joint military exercises on April 1, the Ministry of National Defense announced.

“The practice is slated to begin April 1, and it will be conducted on a similar size in previous years,” the Ministry of National Defense said, according to Yonhap.

The Pentagon confirmed the planned resumption of joint US-South Korean drills, noting that the exercises are expected to conclude toward the end of May.

“Secretary of Defense James N. Mattis and the Republic of Korea Minister of National Defense Song Young-moo have agreed to resume the annual combined exercises including Foal Eagle and Key Resolve which were de-conflicted with the schedule of the Olympic Games. The exercises are expected to resume April 1, 2018, at a scale similar to that of the previous years,” Pentagon spokesman Colonel Rob Manning said in a statement.

Furthermore, the US military noted that the North Koreans were notified about the drills by the United Nations Command. The Pentagon spokesman further added that the maneuvers have been long planned and are not a response to any specific North Korean action.

“Our combined exercises are defense-oriented and there is no reason for North Korea to view them as a provocation,” Lieutenant Colonel Christopher Logan, a Pentagon spokesman, said in a statement.

After North Korea stated its desire to seek rapprochement with its neighbor, Seoul managed to convince Washington to hold off the annual Key Resolve and Foal Eagle drills until after the Olympic and Paralympic Games in South Korea.

However, despite Pyongyang’s pledge to temporarily halt its missile testing, pending upcoming US-North Korean talks, the US has never made concessions to freeze its military drills with South Korea. On Monday, Logan clarified that the military exercise would involve about 23,700 US troops and 300,000 members of the South Korean military.

Following the latest round of negotiations with a high-level delegation from Seoul earlier this month in Pyongyang, Kim Jong-un sent Trump an invitation to discuss the prospects of improving bilateral ties face to face. After months of saber-rattling between the two leaders, Trump agreed to meet the North Korean leader “sometime” in May.

The US president’s readiness to hold discussions with the North came following reassurances by Seoul that Kim is “committed to denuclearization” of the Korean peninsula, which Washington has persisted on. To make negotiations possible Kim even “pledged” to refrain from any further nuclear or missile tests until talks with Trump take place. Surprisingly, the North Korean leader also allegedly showed understanding towards the US-South Korean drills, which have greatly contributed to the ongoing tensions in the region. The US, in return, offered no concessions or promises, insisting that harsh sanctions will remain until a verifiable agreement is reached.

March 20, 2018 Posted by | Militarism | , , | 1 Comment

US Planning a Terrorist False Flag Chemical Attack to Justify Bombing Syria: Russia Says It Will Respond

By Federico PIERACCINI | Strategic Culture Foundation | 20.03.2018

Events in Syria increasingly resemble a direct confrontation between major powers rather than a proxy war. Lavrov’s words, delivered a few days ago, reveal the critical phase of international relations the world is going through, with a potentially devastating conflict ready to ignite in the Middle East region.

An alarming warning by Sergei Lavrov and Chief of the Russian General Staff, Valery Gerasimov, was announced via the RT broadcaster and several Russian media. The content is explosive and deserving of the widest possible dissemination. Gerasimov claimed that Moscow had “reliable information that fighters are preparing to stage the use by government troops of chemical weapons against the civilian population.” He alleged that the US intends to accuse Assad’s troops of using chemical weapons against civilians, and then “carry out a bombing attack” on Damascus. Gerasimov warned that Russia would “take retaliatory measures” if the US targeted areas where its military are located in the Syrian capital. “Russian military advisers, representatives of the Center for Reconciliation and members of military police” are currently in the Syrian capital, Gerasimov said, adding that in the event that the lives of Russian military personnel are placed in danger, the Russian Armed Forces will respond with certain measure to both “missiles” and their “launchers”. A few hours earlier, Lavrov responded, “criticizing the remarks by the US envoy to the UN, Nikki Haley, about Washington’s readiness to “bomb Damascus and even the presidential palace of Bashar Assad, regardless [of the] presence of the Russian representatives there.” “It is an absolutely irresponsible statement,” the Russian top diplomat added.

The words of Gerasimov are even more dire, since he explains how the United States and its allies are preparing the ground to justify an attack on Syria. According to reports, terrorists stationed in Al-Tanf (an illegal US military base in Syria) received 20 tons of chlorine gas and detonators, disguised as cigarette packs, in order to attack in an area under the control of the terrorists that is densely inhabited by civilians. What would then happen is already obvious, with the White Helmets (AKA Al-Qaeda) and mainstream media ready to broadcast the images of the victims of the attack, tugging at the heartstrings of Western viewers otherwise unaware of the conspiracy being played out. Efforts to frame Russia have already reached the highest alert levels, with the false-flag poisoning of the Russian spy in the United Kingdom. It seems that there is a significant effort by the United States, the United Kingdom, France and Germany to provoke a military confrontation with Moscow. How else are we able to interpret threats from Macron to strike Damascus, together with his ominous advice to foreign journalists not to go to Damascus in the coming days and, for those already there, to leave the capital immediately? There has even been chatter within diplomatic circles that suggest that UN personnel are leaving Damascus. This could be psychological warfare, or it could be a prelude to war. With the stakes so high, we cannot afford to ignore any detail, even if it may be disinformation. The American attack seems imminent, with mounting signs of movements of American and Russian warships in the Mediterranean in attack formation.

Russian military representatives have reiterated that in the event of an attack, they will respond by hitting both the missiles launched as well as the ships from which the missiles were launched. Things are getting pretty dicey, and the risk of a direct confrontation between the United States and the Russian Federation are rising with every passing hour. The transfer of numerous US aircraft from Incirlik, Turkey, to Al-Azrak, Jordan, is another indication of preparations for an attack, since the forces moved to Jordan are close to the Al-Tanf base. The proposed strategy could involve an assault on the city of Daraa, for the purposes of securing the borders between Syria and Jordan and Syria and Israel.

The warnings raised by Lavrov and Gerasimov appear unprecedented, given that they detail a plan already set in course, evidently approved at the highest levels and aimed at provoking and justifying an attack on Syria; and attack that would encompass the Russian forces in Syria. Tensions continue to grow, following Russia’s shooting down of a drone by two surface-to-air missiles launched from its Hmeimim Air Base. Moscow has even deployed to the Mediterranean the Admiral Grigorovich-class frigate Admiral Essen and the Krivak II-class anti-submarine frigate Pytivyy. Both are prepared for anti-ship and anti-submarine operations. Sources claim that this deployment was planned some time ago and is part of a routine deployment of the Russian navy. But during such a delicate moment, it pays to focus on every detail. Without resorting to excessive alarmism, if Lavrov said that “the movements of the warships of the United States and its allies in the Mediterranean seem compatible with the strategy of using this chemical attack to justify an attack on the Syrian Arab army and government installations”, then it is reasonable to speculate on whether the Russian ships are moving in to the area to counter any provocations.

There are two fundamental flaws in the reasoning of US policy-makers and the US military establishment. They are convinced that an American demonstration of strength (involving a large number of cruise missile launched against Syria through a significant involvement of aircraft carriers as well as bombers) would stun Russia into passivity. Furthermore, US military generals are convinced that Syria and Russia do not have the ability to defend themselves for an extended period of time. They seem to be fooling themselves with their own propaganda. As their Israeli colleagues have already learned, such an assumption is mistaken. While the idea that a high level of firepower would meet with some kind of success, the possibility of a response from Syrian and Russian forces remains. And this possibility seems not to have been given sufficient weight by the US and her allies.

How would the American military and the Trump presidency react to a US warship being sunk by anti-ship missiles? It would only serve to demonstrate how vulnerable American naval forces are when confronted with such advanced weapons. It would represent a tremendous shock for the US military, possibly the biggest shock since the end of WWII. What would Trump and the generals in charge do? They would respond with further bombardment of Russian forces, leaving themselves open to a devastating Russian response. The conflict could escalate within the space of a few minutes, leading to a situation where there could be no possible winners.

The normal reasoning I employ when considering total annihilation is placed to one side when US special forces deliver 20 tons of chlorine gas to Al Qaeda terrorists in Syria order to execute a false flag for the purposes of blaming Damascus and Moscow. If we connect this event to what is currently happening in the United Kingdom, and the hysteria in the United States surrounding alleged Russian hacking during the American elections, we can understand just how much international relations have deteriorated. This situation is reminiscent of Ukraine in 2015. Ukrainian forces suffered repeated defeats at the hands of the Donbass resistance, being contained in the thousands in different “cauldrons. Within NATO headquarters in Brussels during that time, there was open discussion over sending a contingent to support Ukrainian troops. The plan, however, was never realized, given the possibility of direct confrontation in Ukraine between the Russian Federation and NATO.

In recent months, the possibility of a war on the Korean Peninsula has also been evoked and perhaps simultaneously averted by the unpredictable consequences for both Seoul and the American forces in the region.

In Syria, the approach of Washington and its diplomatic and military emissaries seems more reckless and less tied to a chain of command where the buck stops at the American president. It seems that the US deep state in Syria has a greater and more hidden control over American forces, sabotaging every agreement made between Moscow and Washington. We saw this during the Obama presidency, where the US Air Force bombed government troops in Deir ez-Zor only a few hours after a ceasefire had been reached between Lavrov and Secretary of State Kerry.

The grave circumstances about which we write seem to be without precedent, seeming as they do to lead towards a direct confrontation between nuclear-armed powers. Alas, in such circumstances, we can only hope for the best but prepare for the worst; we can only wait to read on the mainstream media notifications of the latest chemical attack in Syria. We can only hope that there is someone in Washington retaining enough sense to factor in the devastating consequences of an attack on Damascus and the Russian forces in the region.

Never before has the region been on the verge of such an explosion as in the next few hours — as a result of the typically reckless actions of the United States.

March 20, 2018 Posted by | Militarism, Timeless or most popular | , , | 1 Comment

Putin says Russia will decrease military spending

Press TV – March 19, 2018

Russian President Vladimir Putin says he will reduce its military spending during his new term as the leader of the country, a day after he was re-elected in a presidential election with a landslide.

“We have plans to decrease our defense spending both this year and next. But this will not lead to any decline in the country’s defense capacity,” said Putin during a meeting with other presidential candidates in capital Moscow on Monday.

He added that “We will not allow for any sort of arms race.”

Putin’s comments come as ties between Moscow and Washington have plummeted to levels not seen since the Cold War due to the two countries’ disputes over the crises in Ukraine and Syria and after US officials accused Russia of meddling in the 2016 US presidential election.

Since September 2015, Russia has been carrying out airstrikes in support of Syria’s ground troops and has helped them recapture swathes of territory from Takfiri terrorists.

In his best election performance ever, Putin, 65, secured nearly 77 percent of the ballots cast in Sunday’s presidential election, according to the official results released earlier today.

Putin, whose new election win will extend his total time in office to nearly a quarter of a century, until 2024, said elsewhere in his remarks that he aims to focus his new term on “domestic policy issues” and strengthening the country’s “defense capabilities.”

“The main thing that we are going to do is of course, first of all the internal agenda, it is first of all ensuring the growth of the Russian Federation economy, and making it innovative, this is development in the sphere of healthcare, education, industrial output and as I’ve said before of infrastructure and other areas crucial for moving the country forward and lifting the standard of living for our citizens” the Russian leader further said.

March 19, 2018 Posted by | Economics, Militarism | , | 1 Comment

Triggering War. A Manufactured “Catalytic Event” Which Will Initiate An All Out War? Are We Going to Let this Happen Again?

By Prof. Graeme McQueen | Global Research | March 18, 2018

As we watch Western governments testing their opponents – today Iran, the next day the DPRK, and then Russia and China – we hold our breaths. We are waiting with a sense of dread for the occurrence of a catalytic event that will initiate war. Now is the time to reflect on such catalytic events, to understand them, to prepare for them.

The assassination of Archduke Ferdinand on June 28, 1914 in Sarajevo led to the outbreak of World War I. The Gulf of Tonkin incidents on August 2 and August 4, 1964 enabled what we call the Vietnam War.

Both events were war triggers. A “war trigger”, as I am using the term, is an event that facilitates an outbreak or expansion of hot war–that phase of the war system in which active killing takes place.

War triggers can lead affected populations to cast aside their critical faculties and their willingness to dissent from government narratives. They can also disable moral values and ideological commitments. At the outbreak of World War I the peace movement, the women’s movement and the socialist movement were all shattered.

Image result for Rosa Luxemburg

While there is debate among scholars today about the extent of the frenzy in Europe as World War I began, it is difficult to dismiss sophisticated eyewitnesses such as Rosa Luxemburg (image on the right), who referred to what she saw as:

“mad delirium”; “patriotic street demonstrations”; “singing throngs”; “the coffee shops with their patriotic songs”; “the violent mobs, ready to denounce, ready to persecute women, ready to whip themselves into a delirious frenzy over every wild rumour”; “the atmosphere of ritual murder”. (Luxemburg, 261)

What Luxemburg described was a subjective state produced by a successful war trigger, in which a population becomes extremely lethal as it readies itself to rush at its foe while simultaneously battering anyone in its own ranks that dares to dissent.

Luxemburg herself dared to dissent. This led to two and a half years in a German prison cell. During this time she wrote the Junius Pamphlet, criticizing Europe’s socialist leaders for having been captured by the spirit of war, and pointing to the consequences of their folly:

“the cannon fodder that was loaded upon the trains in August and September is rotting on the battlefields of Belgium and the Vosges… Cities are turned into shambles, whole countries into deserts, villages into cemeteries, whole nations into beggars, churches into stables; popular rights, treaties, alliances, the holiest words and the highest authorities have been torn into scraps”. (Luxemburg, 261-2)

Luxemburg’s anger had a solid basis in what has become known as “the August madness” that struck Europe. For example, on August 3, 1914, when the war had just begun, the following call went out to university students from the most senior officials in the Bavarian universities:

“Students! The muses are silent. The issue is battle, the battle forced on us for German culture, which is threatened by the barbarians from the East, and for German values, which the enemy in the West envies us. And so the furor teutonicus bursts into flame once again. The enthusiasm of the wars of liberation flares, and the holy war begins”. (Keegan, 358)

In response to this hysterical appeal, the German university students volunteered in large numbers. Untrained, they were thrown into battle. In the space of three weeks 36,000 of them were killed.

Germany was not unique, of course, in its vulnerability. Randolph Bourne, in an unfinished essay generally known as “War is the Health of the State”, described what he saw somewhat later in the United States as that country flipped from anti-war to pro-war and joined in the global disaster. He observed that once the executive branch had made the decision to go to war the entire population suddenly changed its mind. “The moment war is declared… the mass of the people, through some spiritual alchemy, become convinced that they have willed and executed the deed themselves.”

Therefore, the people, “with the exception of a few malcontents, proceed to allow themselves to be regimented, coerced, deranged in all the environments of their lives, and turned into a solid manufactory of destruction.”

It is true that war madness of the kind that accompanied WWI has been less common in the years since then, partly because that war turned out to be an unprecedented catastrophe. But I believe it is entirely wrong to think that in today’s era of high technology and digitalized war the arousing of the spirit of war in a population is no longer sought or needed. A highly influential analysis of American Vietnam War strategy, carried out by one Col. Harry Summers, concluded some years ago that a chief cause of the US downfall was the failure of leaders to arouse their population’s emotions. The American people, said Summers, had been forced to fight that war “in cold blood”, which they found intolerable. In fact, this failure to arouse the war spirit was taken by many US analysts to have led to the “Vietnam syndrome” – a reluctance to intervene in the affairs of other countries militarily. This was a timidity unsuitable, they felt, for an imperial power.

One of the purposes of the September 11, 2001 operation, in my view, was precisely to change that situation – to arouse intense feelings of unity, aggression and support for government in order to banish once and for all the Vietnam Syndrome and to launch with great energy the new global conflict formation (the “War on Terror”) so that the 21st century, with the military leading the way, would become another American Century.

Still, war triggers are not all the same, and we need to create categories. We can distinguish three broad types: accidental war triggers, managed war triggers and manufactured war triggers.

An accidental war trigger is an event that triggers hot war in the absence of intention. The pressure of events, random clashes, the everyday quest to satisfy physical needs – all these may, in the absence of warlike intent, produce a war trigger. After the event occurs it may lead, again without conscious plotting, directly to a hot and violent conflict between contending parties.

No doubt many war triggers throughout history fit the category of accidental war trigger. However, the more I have studied recent human wars the less ready I have become to promote the triggering events as accidental.

Image result for assassination of Archduke Ferdinand

Years ago when I gave talks on war triggers I used to give the assassination of Archduke Ferdinand as an example of an accidental war trigger. True, I understood that the assassin of the Archduke did not act alone: Gavrilo Princip, the young Serbian nationalist, was certainly not a “lone wolf”; he was one of several armed men stationed along the route of the Archduke’s carriage, and although he was committed to this plan it is also pretty clear that he was deliberately used by a group with high-level connections to carry out the assassination. But I felt that the planners were unlikely to have sought the large-scale conflagration they ended up getting, and I was impressed by the variety of elements in the “Balkan cauldron” that seemed to defy rational planning. Likewise, I was impressed by the numerous systemic factors operative in the wake of this event that led to a major war, ranging from a flourishing arms industry, through genuinely deluded ruling classes and entangling state alliances, to systems such as railways that gave an advantage to the first party to mobilize. All in all, I felt that non-deliberate factors outweighed deliberate factors, so I called this an accidental war trigger.

Recent reading, however, has made me less confident of this position. Especially since encountering Docherty and McGregor’s book, Hidden History: the Secret Origins of the First World War, I am inclined to reclassify the World War I war trigger as a managed trigger.

managed war trigger is one in which a party of influence consciously acts to increase the chances of hot war, either by deliberately creating conditions where a war trigger is likely to arise, or by seizing an event after the fact and shaping it into a war trigger.

If World War I’s war trigger must be moved from accidental to managed, this increases the number of cases in this already well-stuffed category. The Pearl Harbor attack that caused the US entry into World War II was certainly managed. The factors that would increase the chances of the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, thereby overcoming the US population’s resistance to entering this war, were studied and made part of a deliberate program. The Japanese advance on Pearl Harbor was consciously allowed to proceed. The declaration of war on Japan was the immediate fruit of this managed attack.

The Gulf of Tonkin incident also falls into this category. This was no accidental dustup in the Gulf of Tonkin. US leaders had created a systematic program of naval raids on the coast of North Vietnam (the DESOTO raids) intended to stimulate responses. While there is still debate about the degree to which this incident was planned, I am on the side of those who see it as highly deliberate provocation by US leaders, constructed and used to create hot war. The North Vietnamese response to the intrusion of the Maddox and the Turner Joy was remarkably mild, but it was magnified and distorted by US Cold Warriors so that it could be portrayed as “communist aggression” that required violent response.

The success of these last two managed war triggers can be seen in the record of voting in the US Congress. On December 8, 1941 there was only one vote in Congress against the declaration of war on Japan. On August 7, 1964 the House voted unanimously in favour of the Gulf of Tonkin Resolution, while in the Senate the vote was 88-2.

These voting statistics are sobering. The readiness of the group mind to revert to a pre-rational state—to take aggressive action with dire consequences without seeking any serious confirmation of the facts of the matter—puts humanity in a state of profound risk.

manufactured war trigger carries the manipulation of populations even further. Here, deliberateness is extreme: it is not simply a matter of increasing the chances that this or that incident will occur, or making a mountain out of a molehill after the event. Here, those desirous of war write the script, choreograph the action, plan the output, and carry out, or subcontract, the actual event. Typically, they will also prepare to demonize and marginalize anyone who dares to challenge the narrative they present to the world.

The War on Terror is a master class in manufactured and managed war triggers. My own studies have concentrated on the two-part operation of the fall of 2001 – the September 11 airplane incidents and the immediately following anthrax letter attacks. These were manufactured war triggers, and they were successful in winning the support of both the US population and its representatives for foreign wars and restrictions on domestic civil rights.

Washington Post-ABC poll initiated on the evening of 9/11 reportedly found that:

“nearly nine in 10 people supported taking military action against the groups or nations responsible for yesterday’s attacks even if it led to war. Two in three were willing to surrender ‘some of the liberties we have in this country’ to crack down on terrorism”. (MacQueen, 36)

Meanwhile, on September 11, cowed members of Congress fled for their lives on receiving information that a plane was headed toward the Capitol. That evening they assembled on the Capitol steps to sing God Bless America and to begin what was, in effect, their complete capitulation to those who had manufactured this war trigger.

On September 14, 2001 the Authorization for Use of Military Force was passed with a vote of 98-0 in the Senate and 422-1 in the House.

By late October members of Congress had begun to recover somewhat, and the USA Patriot Act, restricting domestic civil rights, met more opposition in the House than had the rush to war, passing by a vote of 357-66. Its fate in Senate, however, was more typical of such cases: 98 to 1.

These outcomes in Congress demonstrate the remarkable success, in the short term, of the manufactured war triggers of the fall of 2001. The effects of such operations, however, are temporary, so the perpetrators have had no choice but to continue managing and manufacturing war triggers to maintain the fraudulent War on Terror. The FBI (and parallel federal police agencies in other Western countries) busily entrap and recruit young people as fodder for the War on Terror, while in other cases False Flag attacks are carried out using wholesale invention. These initiatives have had a mixed success. For example, the official account of the Boston Marathon bombing is widely accepted despite its contradictions and absurdities; but the story of the Syrian chemical weapons attack of 2013 failed to accomplish its apparent aim of greatly expanded direct US military involvement in Syria. Likewise, sceptics of the recent claim of Russian “novichok” use in the UK are already vocal.

We would do well to remember that the on-going production of managed and manufactured war triggers takes great resources and cannot forever remain leak-proof. It carries serious risks for war planners. The successful and definitive exposure of even one of these frauds before the people of the world could affect the balance of power overnight.

Our task is clear. We must mobilize both our investigative resources and our communication resources to nullify the efforts of those who specialize in the construction and encouragement of war triggers and who wish to keep the war system robust. We lost over 100 million people to war in the 20th century. Are we really going to let this happen again?


Graeme MacQueen is a former Director of the Centre for Peace Studies at McMaster University, a member of the 9/11 Consensus Panel, and a past co-editor of the Journal of 9/11 Studies.

Professor McQueen is a frequent contributor to Global Research.


The Junius Pamphlet: The Crisis in the German Social Democracy, in Rosa Luxemburg Speaks, edited by Mary-Alice Waters. New York: Pathfinder Press, 1970.

John Keegan, A History of Warfare. New York: Alfred Knopf, 1993.

Randolph Bourne, “The State (‘War is the Health of the State’)”, 1918.

Col. Harry Summers, On Strategy: A Critical Analysis of the Vietnam War. Presidio Press, 1982.

Gerry Docherty and Jim MacGregor, Hidden History: The Secret Origins of the First World War. Edinburgh: Mainstream Publishing, 2013

Robert B. Stinnett, Day of Deceit: The Truth about FDR and Pearl Harbor. New York: Touchstone, 2001.

Graeme MacQueen, The 2001 Anthrax Deception: The Case for a Domestic Conspiracy. Atlanta: Clarity Press, 2014.

March 19, 2018 Posted by | False Flag Terrorism, Mainstream Media, Warmongering, Militarism | 5 Comments

Syria: The Horrible End Versus the Endless Horror

By Randy Shields • Unz Review • March 17, 2018

Neocon Max Boot now says it’s better for the Syrian people if Assad stays in power. But we still can’t get the American left to come to its senses about Syria.

Louis Proyect says in Counterpunch that the suffering coming out of East Ghouta is “on a massive scale reminiscent of Leningrad in 1941.”

According to Wiki, a million and a half people died during the Leningrad siege. According to the authoritative-sounding Syrian Observatory for Human Rights — one anti-Assad guy in a Coventry flat, relying mostly on reports from anti-Assad fighters — 1,000 people have been killed in East Ghouta, horrible to be sure but not Leningrad. In Leningrad, people were reduced to cannibalism. There was cannibalism in Syria in 2013: a commander for the left’s beloved Free Syrian Army cut the lungs out of a Syrian Army soldier and ate them on camera. A “moderate” rebel eminently worthy of CIA dollars — and spicy recipes.

While bringing up Lou-dicrous comparisons to 1941 Leningrad, Proyect fails to mention the US-destroyed Raqqa and Mosul from which dead bodies are still being found and dragged out of the rubble. Rest assured that the Great Satan will not rebuild those cities as Assad is doing with Palmyra and Aleppo. To the colonized mind of the American left, the crimes of America’s enemies are always worse and more worth talking about than the crimes of America itself. US airstrikes were responsible for most of the 40,000 dead civilians in Mosul and over 3,000 in Raqqa.

By the way, two thirds of the casualties in Syria have been Syrian soldiers and anti-government fighters. The anti-Assad left and the mockingbird media would have us believe that all 345,000 Syrian deaths have been civilians who Assad and Putin deliberately, personally and exclusively killed. The pressitutes tell us how unpopular the Alawite Assad is while the entire world sees a Sunni majority army fighting to the death for him and the rest of Syria by killing off Wahhabist Sunni fanatics. Huh? (Syria has never been a “civil war” or a “sectarian conflict” — it’s been a pre-planned destruction led by the US, piggy-backing on legitimate grievances of the Syrian working class.)

Interestingly, the anti-Assad left never tells us the names of the armed opposition groups that it supports. Why? Is it because they are al-Qaeda offshoots? Is it because they are so tiny and few in number that they are inconsequential and/or the Syrian working class majority don’t support them? Is it because they collaborated with the most regressive fundamentalist groups and/or got wiped out by them? The anti-Assad left seems to live in an ivory tower that got destroyed somewhere around 2012 — they never say what should be done now.

Then Proyect makes a false equivalency between Israel bombing Gaza in response to Hamas’ largely ineffectual rockets and the Syrian government bombing terrorists in East Ghouta who have been shelling Damascus for years with howitzers, mortars and GRAD rockets, killing and wounding thousands of civilians. Gazans are occupied and have legitimate rights under international law to resist, including violently.

Proyect quotes Counterpunch’s Jeffrey St. Clair that aerial bombing of cities is a war crime. I couldn’t agree more and I’ll raise you an aerial bombing of jungles also. And I think shooting a barrage of GRAD rockets into downtown Damascus is a war crime too. (What parts of war aren’t a crime?) So, where does that put us? It puts “us” safely and snugly in the belly of the beast. It puts the Syrian working class majority wanting its government to protect them from a minority of al-Qaeda metastases, funded and armed by the most reactionary regimes on earth, trying to win violently what they can’t win intellectually, socially or politically. The left just won’t cut its intellectual (“moderate” rebels) or political (Russia-gate) losses. And isn’t it interesting how so much of what the left does is in harmony with what the Pentagon, the CIA and the empire wants.

And since Proyect brought up Gaza and the Palestinians… It was the Palestinian Liwaa al-Quds force who stormed the al-Shaaher roundabout in Aleppo on September 24, 2016 which liberated the Handaraat Camp which turned around the battle for Aleppo which turned around the fight for Syria which is turning the American empire upside down with indispensable help from Russia and Iran. On that memorable September day eastern Aleppo residents were cheering on Liwwa al-Quds, Hezbollah and the Syrian Arab Army as they hunted down and killed the members of the CIA-funded Nour al-Din al-Zenki who beheaded the 12-year-old Palestinian boy on film. The Syrian working class doesn’t actually like the 31 flavors of takfiri terrorists that some western leftists find so sweet.

In fact, during the December 2016 liberation of Aleppo, Syrians who lived for years under the rule of the fanatics were outraged that the Syrian army put the terrorists on buses to Idlib instead of killing them outright. A day later it was discovered that, just before they surrendered, the terrorists had summarily executed over 100 hostages and prisoners in basement prisons, including many Syrian soldiers.

Then Proyect attempts to make a case for the fanatics in East Ghouta by contrasting their poverty-stricken area with wealthier Damascus. A splendid insight. Now, how about you leading the charge of South Central against Beverly Hills? Oh, that’s right — the impotent defeated American left has been on the run for 40 years and can only mind the business of the Assads, Saddams, Gadaffis and the ayatollahs — all Israeli enemies and sitting atop large energy resources [allowing economically viable resistance]  — while “our” own government remains the chief engine of destruction in the world. Blessedly, the brown working classes of the world don’t give a flying fuck about what white western leftists think because they know they aren’t going to get any help from us. We’re irrelevant. Ask a Yemeni, ask a Honduran, ask a Congolese.

Christmas and New Years have been celebrated for the last two years in Aleppo and some semblance of normalcy is returning. Right now, in liberated areas of East Ghouta, people are welcoming the return of the Syrian Arab Army and telling the media how they’ve been used as human shields. In non-liberated areas, civilians are demonstrating against the terrorists and negotiating with them to leave. As with Aleppo in 2016, people in East Ghouta have been telling the SAA the locations of terrorist commanders, ammo dumps, jails and headquarters. Also, as with Aleppo, terrorists are sniping and shelling humanitarian corridors so civilians have difficulty leaving. There are also now civilians rallying in Raqqa for the occupying American monster to GTFO.

The future of the world is being fought for in Syria — that’s why the propaganda of the mockingbird media has been unrelenting in its lies, hypocrisy, hysteria and demonization for seven years. Tel Aviv and Riyadh are going crazy and they are making sure Mordor-on-the-Potomac goes crazy with them. Putin is killing off America’s regime-changing terrorist mercenary army although, characteristically, he’s been too slow and cautious and Daesh has now set up shop in Afghanistan to harass, delay and destroy China’s Belt and Road Initiative. Assad and Putin are bringing a horrible end to the carnage in Syria as opposed to the Saudi, Israeli and US-preferred endless horror.

One last thing. People have not been paying proper attention to the written transcript of several lines toward the end of Putin’s March 1st address to the Russian Federal Assembly: “I should note that our military doctrine says Russia reserves the right to use nuclear weapons solely in response to a nuclear attack, or an attack with other weapons of mass destruction against the country or its allies, or an act of aggression against us with the use of conventional weapons that threatens the very existence of the state. This all is very clear and specific. As such, I see it as my duty to announce the following. Any use of nuclear weapons against Russia or its allies, weapons of short, medium or any range at all, will be considered as a nuclear attack on this country. Retaliation will be immediate, with all the attendant consequences.”

An attack with other weapons of mass destruction against Russia or its “allies.” Who does Russia consider allies? China, Iran, Syria, North Korea, Venezuela? Turkey? The Donbass? Did Putin just tell the criminal neocon filth who rule America to never attack Iran and North Korea — or ever attack the Syrian government again? No sane person in the world should test that out. Perhaps the previously mentioned neocon Max Boot is one of the first to “listen.”

The last time no one paid careful attention to Putin was his September 28, 2015 address to the United Nations where he condemned the US use of terrorists to further its regime change operations throughout the world, saying “We can no longer tolerate the current state of affairs in the world.” Two days later Russia began bombing hundreds of ISIS oil tankers in Syria that US satellite surveillance had been contentedly watching grow for years. Wake up, Americans. “Retaliation will be immediate, with all the attendant consequences.” The three horses’ asses of the apocalypse — Trump, Satanyahoo and Saudi Clown Prince Mohammad bin Salman — are leading the world to disaster.

Randy Shields can be reached at His writings and art are collected at

March 17, 2018 Posted by | Deception, Fake News, Mainstream Media, Warmongering, Militarism, Wars for Israel | , , , | 2 Comments

US Senate Warns Russia of Sanctions if S-400 Sold to Any Foreign Nations

Sputnik – 17.03.2018

WASHINGTON – A group of US lawmakers led by Senator Bob Menendez told the State Department in a letter that any sale of Russian S-400 air defense system should lead to new punitive measures as stipulated in the Countering America’s Adversaries Through Sanctions Act (CAATSA).

“We are writing today to specifically inquire about reported negotiations between Russia and certain countries over sales of the Russian government’s S-400 air defense system and whether these reported deals could trigger mandatory CAATSA sanctions,” the letter said on Friday. “Under any circumstance, a S-400 sale would be considered a ‘significant transaction’ and we expect that any sale would result in designations.”

The lawmakers also requested that the State Department provide detailed analysis on the current status of Russian S-400 talks with China, Turkey, India, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, and any other country.

The senators based their letter on a report produced by the Congressional Research Service, which showed that Russia has been working on potential defense deals with different countries.

Menendez and co-signers demanded information on how the State Department is trying to prevent the sales of S-400 being finalized and reiterated Washington’s accusations of Russia’s aggression in Ukraine and meddling in democratic process in foreign states.

The request comes just a day after the Treasury Department used the CAATSA legislation, along with an Executive Order that was amended by CAATSA, to impose sanctions on five entities and 19 individuals.

Russia’s Federal Security Service (FSB), Main Intelligence Directorate and six Russian individuals were sanctioned under the CAATSA legislation.

The US Congress passed CAATSA last summer in response to allegations that Russia sought to influence the 2016 US presidential election. Trump signed it into law on August 2.

Russia has repeatedly denied all allegations of interference in the US election, calling the accusations “absurd.”

March 16, 2018 Posted by | Militarism, Timeless or most popular | , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Hold my beer and watch this!

The Saker | March 15, 2018

Rattlesnakes have a terrible reputation. Here were I live, in Florida, we have the biggest rattlesnakes on the planet, the Eastern Diamondback (Crotalus adamanteus). They are huge and can reach well over 2m (6ft) in length and weigh up to 15kg (30lbs). The Eastern Diamondback’s venom is not the most potent out there, but they can deliver *a lot* of it. So, yes, it is a formidable creature. But it is also a gentle creature and truly very shy one.

Eastern Diamonbacks are also a stunningly beautiful creatures.  I confess that I absolutely love them.

For all their reputation for nastiness, Eastern Diamonbacks will never ever attack you if they can avoid it. I have seen a lot of these snakes on my hikes, I have manipulated them (with a hook), and I have seen my German Shepherd come nose to nose with one (literally) and that Eastern Diamondback did not strike. Why? Because these snakes will do everything they can to avoid having to bite you.

First and foremost, they hide. Really well. You can stand right next to a large Eastern Diamondback and never notice it. You can walk right by, and it won’t move, or rattle its tail, and you will never know that it was there. Camouflage is their first line of defense.

Then, if discovered, they will rattle their tails. If needed, very loudly. You can easily hear the rattle from an Eastern Diamondback from 5m (15ft) away. More than enough distance to easily avoid it.

Furthermore, if given the chance, the Eastern Diamondback will retreat and hide.

Finally, when cornered a lot of them try what is called a “dry bite”: they do bite you, but deliver no venom. Why? Because you are not prey, so what would be the point of envenoming you? The Eastern Diamondback does not want you dead, it wants you to let it live!

I was once told by a park ranger in Arizona that the profile of a typical rattlesnake bite victim is: white, male, with tattoos and the famous last words “hold my beer and watch this!“.

Why am I telling you all this?

Because that is exactly what I see happening before my horrified eyes.

Russia is the Eastern Diamondback desperately trying to do all it can to avoid to have to strike. The West is the drunk idiot full of hubris, arrogance and a very mistaken sense of invulnerability saying “hold my beer and watch this!“.

Keep in mind that in a confrontation with a drunken human the Eastern Diamondback is most unlikely to survive. And it knows that, and that is why it does everything it can to avoid such a confrontation in the first place.  But if cornered or attacked the Diamondback will strike. Hard. Want to see what such a strike looks like? Like this:

You most definitely do NOT want to be on the receiving end of that strike!

But that’s for normal, sober, people. When you are drunk your attitude is “hold my beer and watch this!” you “know” that you can handle that snake.

They are all at it right now. May, Trump, Macron and Merkel, of course, but also the their sycophantic presstitutes and the herds of zombified followers. They all believe in their invulnerability and superiority.

The terrifying truth is that these folks have NO IDEA whom they are dealing with nor do they understand the consequences of pushing Russia too hard. Oh, in theory they do (yeah, yeah, Napoleon, Hitler, we know!). But in their guts, they feel safe, superior and just can’t conceive that they can die and their entire society simply disappear.

I suggest that they carefully ponder the following.

In a recent interview Putin was asked about the rationale of a retaliatory strike by Russia if she was attacked by the USA.  Putin replied the following: “Yes, for mankind this would be a global catastrophe, for the world it would be a global catastrophe, but as a citizen of Russia and as the Head of the Russian state I ask: “what need would we have a world if there is no Russia?“.

So there you have it, directly from Putin: if the AngloZionist plan is to eliminate Russia (whether physically or otherwise), then the Russian people have no need for such a world. Consider these words as the Russian version of a very loud, almost desperate, rattle.

And look at how they are all trying to see how far they can “safely” push Russia.

I wonder if that Russian “rattle” will be loud enough to stop the West before it is too late.

I am not so sure.

March 16, 2018 Posted by | Militarism, Timeless or most popular | , | 2 Comments