All posts filed under: USA

Public Barred from NDAA Senate Committee Markup

Renee Parsons It appears to have been no coincidence that when President John F. Kennedy’s spoke to the American Newspaper Publishers Association on April 27,1961, ten days after the failed Bay of Pigs invasion, he tacitly referred to the Joint Chiefs and the CIA who had orchestrated the Cuban invasion and then lied to gain his approval for military action. In that speech, Kennedy expressed what became a quintessential JFK quote: the very word ‘secrecy’ is repugnant in a free and open society and we are as a people inherently and historically opposed to secret societies, to secret oaths, and to secret proceedings. We decided long ago that the dangers of excessive and unwarranted concealment of pertinent facts far outweigh the dangers which are cited to justify it.” On May 24th, the Senate Armed Services Committee (SASC) met behind closed doors and approved the massive 1140 page National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA S 2987 ) of 2019 by a 25-2 vote which authorizes ‘funding and provides activities for the US military.’ At the same time, …

New Study on Rising Suicide Rates in the US Suggests Capitalism Is Quite Literally Killing Americans

by Grit Post Editorial Board, June 11, 2018 A study released late last week showed that suicide rates have risen significantly across the country. The culprit appears to be capitalism. t’s largely assumed that people who decide to kill themselves are suffering from a mental illness. Mental Health America estimates that 30 to 70 percent of Americans who end their own lives are suffering from either severe depression or bipolar disorder. However, according to a study conducted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), 54 percent of Americans who committed suicide in 27 states in 2015 had no known mental health condition. The CDC study, which examined suicide rates in all 50 states between 1999 and 2016, found that the rate of Americans taking their own lives increased by an alarming 38 to 58 percent in 12 states, 31 to 37 percent in another 12 states, and 19 percent to 30 percent in another 12 states. The CDC found that on average, suicide rates jumped by more than 30 percent for all 50 states. The only state that …

Anthony Bourdain’s State Department Smorgasbord

by Lorenzo, June 10, 2018 Anthony Bourdain’s suicide in June 2018 will cement his reputation as a progressive celebrity with a unique acumen for explaining the world to his fans. CNN’s obituary says that the most common sentiment in response to his death is “I feel like I’ve lost a friend.” You’d have to go back to the death of Steve Jobs to find a celebrity who provoked this kind of personal investment on the part of his fans. Bourdain’s reputation was built for this, because the chef could be relied on to impart a very specific view of the world, and more importantly, to not look like he was doing it. This was the most consequential part of his work—why he was hired by CNN—and it’s the part that will get discussed the least as the adulation pours in. The following was written a few months ago but it is offered today with minor changes. As of March 2018 Patrick Radden Keefe, a journalist who typically covers El Chapo and ISIS, can add to …

AUDIO: Academic Propaganda Protecting US Financial Imperialism

Australia’s Renegade Economists radio show interviews US economist Michael Hudson (June 7, 2018). Prof Michael Hudson joins to review his critique of US financial imperialism in light of recent events. From the World Bank, IMF through to deep state strategy, Hudson is the best in the business at tying the economic pressures in our lives to the geo-political forces at work.

Lift the ban on communications! Free Julian Assange!

by James Coga, via WSWS June 6 will mark 10 weeks since the Ecuadorian government blocked all communication by WikiLeaks’ editor Julian Assange with the outside world, including personal visitors. Assange has been trapped inside the Ecuadorian embassy in London since 2012, when Quito granted him asylum in the face of a legal witch-hunt by the governments of the United States, Britain and Sweden. Britain was moving to extradite Assange to Sweden on trumped-up allegations of sexual abuse as the first step in transferring him to the US to face charges of espionage, which carry a possible death sentence. Washington had vowed to punish Assange for having exposed before the world war crimes committed by the US in Iraq and Afghanistan as well as US intrigues against other countries. In remarks last Wednesday, Ecuadorian President Lenín Moreno attempted to defend the silencing of Assange. He sought to deny—unconvincingly—that this action was the outcome of his government’s capitulation to pressure and threats by the United States. Moreno put forward an Orwellian conception of freedom of speech …

Why the Evidence Mueller Has for the Indicting 13 Russian Nationals is Fraudulent

It’s almost a shame that a headline like that won’t spark anything more than casual curiosity when you consider the charges Richard Mueller is looking into. The Russian company Concord Management decided to answer is charges in early May, which threw a wrench into Mueller’s strategy.

Pompeo Challenged at Senate Foreign Relations Committee

by Renee Parsons Newly appointed Secretary of State Mike Pompeo had every reason to expect that his first official appearance before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee would be the usual slam-dunk as mostly obedient, respectful Senators aligned with his testimony. Instead of the typically gratuitous compliments and undeserved deference, there was a display (albeit a minority) of some moral courage with a rare slice of truth on Capitol Hill, epitomizing the real-time requirements of a Senator’s job: to be skeptical, provide oversight and demand accountability from every Federal government witness, no matter the rank – once referred to as ‘grilling the witness.” Besides fraternizing with America’s most privileged citizens, endless rounds of lavish Capitol Hill receptions, wide ranging international travel opportunities (aka junkets), a liberal vacation policy and exorbitant benefits out of step for the minimal accomplishments actually achieved, the current Senate paradigm has allowed too many Members to degenerate into a protuberance of greedy, sniveling, weak-minded buffoons with no genuine regard for their constituents or what was once the greatest democracy on the planet. …

Saudi Wahabbism Serves Western Imperialism

by Andre Vltchek When the Saudi Crown Prince gave an interview to the Washington Post, declaring that it was actually the West that encouraged his country to spread Wahhabism to all corners of the world, there was a long silence in almost all the mass media outlets in the West, but also in countries such as Egypt and Indonesia. Those who read the statement, expected a determined rebuke from Riyadh. It did not come. The sky did not fall. Lightning did not strike the Prince or the Post. Clearly, not all that the Crown Prince declared appeared on the pages of the Washington Post, but what actually did, would be enough to bring down entire regimes in such places like Indonesia, Malaysia or Brunei. Or at least it would be enough under ‘normal circumstances’. That is, if the population there was not already hopelessly and thoroughly indoctrinated and programed, and if the rulers in those countries did not subscribe to, or tolerate, the most aggressive, chauvinistic and ritualistic (as opposed to the intellectual or spiritual) …

AUMF 2018 and the “forever war” in the Middle East

by Renee Parsons The Senate Foreign Relations Committee held a hearing on May 16th regarding the authorization of a new Authority for the Use of Military Force 2018 (AUMF). Despite a current lack of unanimity on the committee, the draft authorization (SJ Res 59) has been brought forward as a working document despite the lack of successful back-room negotiations in recent weeks. The hearing was conducted with no quorum present, the lack of which denied the sponsors an easy vote of approval. The AUMF 2018 would replace AUMF’s 2001 and 2002 which proponents suggest would remove the onerous Constitutional responsibility from a self-proclaimed over-burdened Congress from voting to approve every single separate act of war. While final approval of the AUMF 2018 represents a “Forever Vote,” product of a low vibration consciousness, the ACLU, which should be leading a vigorous national campaign against the proposal, appears absent from the debate. Approval of a one-size-fits-all AUMF will greatly facilitate the Pentagon’s long held desire to ‘take out’ seven countries in five years – although somewhat behind …

Propornot 2 — Setting Up the Atlantic Council for Lawsuits

by George H. Elias, Donbass Early in 2018, I pulled back the veil Propornot hid behind and disclosed the groups behind the smear site.  Propornot is a product of the Atlantic Council’s backers.  It is a symptom of the ongoing Information War.  People in the groups behind it are waging to destroy Press Freedom in the US by branding dissenting voices as objects of ridicule at best and enemies of the state at the worst. Below, you’ll see the results of yet another website scan, as well as circumstantial evidence showing the InterpreterMag and the Atlantic Council, are responsible for Propornot. The lawsuits are starting and because of the damage Propornot’s lists have done, will trickle down to the InterpreterMag staff,  the Atlantic Council, and their backers at some point. For those that don’t know, the Atlantic Council is brought to you by the Central and Eastern European Coalition (CEEC), the Ukrainian Congressional Committee of America (UCCA), and the Ukrainian World Congress(UWC). Between these three organizations, there is a constituency of 20 million voting ultranationalist …

Fake news instead of real criticism

by Denis Churilov, Australia There are so many real things Trump should be criticised for, yet the mainstream media keeps making up stuff, producing fake stories and misreporting news about him. What for? Isn’t there already enough real material for the media to destroy him without repeatedly making fools out of themselves? The most recent case was last week, when major American news outlets (including ABC News, CBS News, CNN, NBC News, as well as the Washington Post) reported that Trump called illegal immigrants “animals”, when in reality he was specifically referring to the members of MS-13, a criminal gang whose associates have been accused of beheading their victims. Don’t they understand that, by fixating on minor things, taking remarks out of context, misreporting and blatantly making up stories, they only de-legitimise the anti-Trump movement? Why do they have to lie? ***   Attempting to answer my own question, I would say that it has to do with the artificially “limited spectrum of acceptable opinion” described by Noam Chomsky in his 1998 book titled “A …

Special Service’s Agent: Attack On Russia is Being Prepared

While the Pentagon accuses Russia of fomenting false fears of a Daesh/ISIS threat in Central Asia – see Sputnik’s article on this — new reports of an American push to attack Russia militarily via Uzbekistan and Tajikistan and are now emerging.  We’re reposting here Catehon’s May 19 article on this topic by Andrey Afanasyev. Sources in the Russian law enforcement agencies, citing data from closed communication channels with the Defense Ministries of China, Pakistan and Afghanistan, say that the operation to prepare a large-scale hybrid offensive against Russia through Tajikistan and Uzbekistan is in the final phase. Reports of this have been received earlier, in particular, this was mentioned at a recent security conference held in Tashkent. Then the head of the Tajik Foreign Ministry Sirodzhiddin Aslov openly announced the activation of terrorists in the region: The activation of terrorist groups, their advancement to the northern regions of Afghanistan, especially in the territories bordering Tajikistan, the increase in the number of ISIS supporters, as well as the participation of a certain number of citizens of …

Gina Haspel and Pinocchio from Rome

by Edward Curtin Being in Rome, Italy and thinking of Gina Haspel, the CIA nominee and admitted torturer who says her “moral conscience” has changed after the fact, seems most fitting. Wherever you go in central Rome, you can hear the screams and smell the blood of those tortured and killed by the Roman Empire and those who ably followed in their stead. And you can see the crumbled stones and the pathetic architectural remains of those who thought they had triumphed. Their triumph turned to dust, and their belated mea culpas, if and when they ever came, always rang as hollow as Gina Haspel’s, Lt. William Calley’s, and Adolph Eichmann’s excuses that they were only doing their jobs and following orders. Throughout Rome there are hawkers dangling Pinocchio trinkets in your face, constant reminders of the cost of lying. Or perhaps more aptly, the fame that ensues from lying followed by a childish semi-apology, even when it’s as obvious as the nose on your face that you are lying still. So in the Senate …

Trumps War by Tirade: Art of the Spiel or, How to Get Stitched?

by Dan Mallon Anyone fortunate enough to have been living under a rock for the past 16 months, would have been astounded by Trump’s Indiana speech/address/rally? Whatever it was. For the rest of us however, this has become what is called ‘business as usual’. What I assume was meant to be a celebration for Mike Braun’s victory in the Indiana Senate race, very quickly ended up being hi-jacked by the Jaffa Cake in Chief. It wasn’t a complete cringe fest however, he did allow Mike ‘interrupt’ his speech, for a second. Right before he snubbed him. Twice. Whether this was intentional or not, it was pretty funny. God forbid anyone rains on Trump’s parade. His hour long streams of consciousness were as usual, quite enlightening. However, seeing the fine people of Indiana whooping and cheering for further militarisation of their police force was truly a sight worth seeing. Who knew turkeys had such fondness for Christmas after all. Aside from Trump’s usual American flag waving – like boasting about being the only nation to have …

WATCH: former CIA Analyst Ray McGovern Brutalized By Police At Haspel Confirmation

78-year old Ray McGovern, ex-CIA analyst and respected commenter was detained, thrown to the ground and handcufFed for protesting the confirmation of Gina Haspel as head of the CIA yesterday. Haspel previously headed the CIA’s enhanced interrogation program which included several forms of physical and psychological torture

DISCUSSION THREAD: what does Trump’s ditching of the Iran nuclear agreement mean?

How do we interpret Trump’s decision to junk the nuclear deal with Iran?

Systematic News Suppression in Today’s U.S.

Ray McGovern was a CIA analyst from 1963 to 1990, and in the 1980s chaired the National Intelligence Estimates and prepared the President’s Daily Brief. But now retired, he’s a critic of the very same government he had spent his career representing, and especially of its virtually fully controlled press

Why did State Dept. Freeze White Helmets Funding?

by Sophie Mangal A breaking piece was published via CBS news recently that the U.S. frozen funding for Syria’s “White Helmets”. Why did it happen, probably you would like to ask us… First, the delay in approving the financing may be connected with the revision of the strategy of using White Helmets as East Ghouta had been lost for the opposition. It impossible now to use the pretext of ‘regime crimes in Ghouta’ using Civil Defense. The militants have lost both an enclave and the resources invested (chemical laboratories, chemicals, studios, staff, weapons, money etc). Second, some activities in Idlib are hampered by the growing influence of Turkey, which gradually gains control over terrorist groups previously backed by Saudi Arabia and Qatar. That is why there are numerous reports of a possible transfer of White Helmets activities from Ghouta to Deir Ezzor province where US-controlled terrorists operate and there are a lot of room to work for White Helmets. The more so, State Dept. support is only a visible part of the funding. The participation …

Why the U.S. Regime Hates Vladimir Putin

by Eric Zuesse Here is Putin in extemporaneous discussion and interview (translated into English): The second of those videos shows Putin offering Russia’s billionaires the choice between being dispossessed of their companies by the Government, or else signing an agreement with the Government, promising that they will henceforth place the welfare of their workers and of the people of Russia, above their own personal welfare and wealth, and only one billionaire there, Oleg Deripaska, hesitated, at which point Putin treated him contemptuously and Deripaska promptly signed. Here is how Britain’s Express newspaper, on 7 October 2015, described that second video: It shows the 63-year-old [Putin], who has launched a blitz of more than 50 airstrikes against the terror regime [Syria’s ISIS] in recent days, directly confronting Russian oligarchs and ranting at them that they are good for nothing COCKROACHES. In the incredible footage, Putin humiliates Oleg Deripaska, one of the world’s richest men with a fortune of $6m [Deripaska’s fortune in 2009 was actually $3.5 billion], and treats him like his personal lapdog. It was …

Crisis in Armenia: Is the Empire Attacking Russia from the South?

by Tyler Durden, via ZeroHedge, April 23, 2018 Western-Backed Regime Change Looms As Armenia PM Resigns Following Mass Protests After 11 days of mass protests and violent clashes over the perceived power-grab following the outgoing Armenian President’s election to Prime Minister, Serzh Sargsyan has resigned and police have released opposition leader Nikol Pashinyan. “The people are against my rule,” Sargsyan, who took office as prime minister after serving as Armenia’s president for 10 years, said in a statement. “I am leaving my post.” As Bloomberg reports, the announcement came as demonstrators flooded the streets of the capital, Yerevan, for an 11th day on Monday demanding Sargysan’s resignation, and hours after police released opposition leader Nikol Pashinyan from overnight detention. Pashinyan’s arrest prompted the largest protest to date on Sunday, while scores of troops joined the anti-government movement on Monday for the first time. Sargsyan’s election as Prime Minister was largely perceived as a power grab because Sargsyan will largely retain the same powers that he held during his two terms in the Presidential capacity, and …