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Mattis “We’re Not In Iraq To Seize Anybody’s Oil”

Mattis “We’re Not In Iraq To Seize Anybody’s Oil”

In the latest distancing by Trump administration advisors from recent statements by the President, Defense Secretary Jim Mattis arrived in Baghdad on an unannounced visit on Monday to discuss the war effort against ISIS, and said that the US military is not in Iraq “to seize anybody’s oil.” 


Secretary of Defence, James Mattis, arrives in Baghdad, February 20, 2017

Speaking to a small group of reporters traveling with him, Mattis was quoted by Reuters as saying “I think all of us here in this room, all of us in America, have generally paid for our gas and oil all along and I’m sure that we will continue to do so in the future.” 

On his first trip to Iraq as Pentagon chief, Mattis is set to assess the war effort against the Islamic State as Iraqi forces launch a new push to evict ISIS militants from their remaining stronghold in the city of Mosul. In Iraq, he is likely to face questions about Trump’s remarks and actions, including a temporary ban on travel to the United States and for saying America should have seized Iraq’s oil after toppling Saddam Hussein in 2003. Trump told CIA staff in January: “We should have kept the oil. But okay. Maybe you’ll have another chance.”

Trump later clarified his position in an ABC interview. The president said ISIS would not have become a global threat if it hadn’t taken over Iraq’s oil industry when the country was left weakened by the war.

“We should’ve kept the oil when we got out. And, you know, it’s very interesting, had we taken the oil, you wouldn’t have ISIS, because they fuel themselves with the oil. That’s where they got the money. They got the money… when we left, we left Iraq, which wasn’t a government.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Tucker Carlson and Glenn Greenwald Discuss Deep State War Vs. Trump, While Ex-Spook Hints At Assassination

Tucker Carlson and Glenn Greenwald Discuss Deep State War Vs. Trump, While Ex-Spook Hints At Assassination

DeepState-e1398185022722Journalist Glenn Greenwald, who is not a fan of President-elect Trump, appeared on Tucker Carlson tonight to discuss the dangerous ongoing effort among powerful anti-Trump factions within the US Government’s “Deep State,” who have collaborated with members of the Democratic Party and the traditionally liberal media to inflict maximum damage on the incoming President. Recall Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer’s ominous “six ways from Sunday” comment from 10 days ago.

Greenwald, an accomplished litigator, journalist, and author, does a masterful job illustrating the players, motives, and potential fallout from this dangerous effort within the US Government’s intelligence apparatus. Greenwald goes deep, discussing how Trump’s election ruined the plan for regime change in Syria, specifically mentioning, among other things, that the deep state was waiting for Obama to leave office before executing their plan: 

The number one foreign policy priority of the CIA over the last four to five years has been the proxy war they’re waging in Syria to remove Bashar Al Assad – and Hillary Clinton was quite critical of Obama for constraining them. She wanted to escalate that war to unleash the CIA, to impose a no-fly zone in Syria to confront Russia, whereas Trump took the exact opposite position. He said we have no business in Syria trying to change the government, we ought to let the Russia and Assad go free and killing ISIS and Al Quaeda and whoever else they want to kill.

He [Trump] was a threat to the CIA’s primary institutional priority of regime change in Syria. Beyond that, Clinton wanted a much more confrontational and belligerent posture towards Moscow, which the CIA has been acrimonious with for decades, whereas Trump wanted better relations. They viewed Trump as a threat to their institutional pre-eminence to their ability to get their agenda imposed on Washington.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Glut Fears Spike As Europe Runs Out Of On-Land Oil Storage

Glut Fears Spike As Europe Runs Out Of On-Land Oil Storage

Tanker

Oil has been called names (“dirty fossil fuel!”). The cartels use it as a weapon to thwart their rivals. ISIS steals it and pimps it out on some sketchy black market. Swaths of it are set on fire and used as a shield. The pipelines through which it travels to and fro are bombed or protested—nearly daily. Sometimes unscrupulous babysitters let it loose to drown in an ocean or float carelessly down the river, never to be recovered. And now, oil, at least that destined for Europe, is homeless and is not being allowed to disembark after shipment.

Oil majors in northwest Europe have booked tankers to store 9 million barrels of oil as the international supply glut grows in size, according to a ship-operator who spoke to Bloomberg.

The companies have resorted to using tankers as storage as signs emerge that onshore storage is filling up on the land-starved continent.

Next month, Northwest Europe, which includes mega-producer Norway as well as the United Kingdom, France, Germany and others, expects to load the highest number of shipments in 4.5 years.

Somewhere in between 14 to 16 medium-sized Aframax tankers have lined the ports, according to Jonathan Lee, the CEO of Tankers International. Lee, whose firm operates the biggest pool of supertankers in the world, confirmed that the lack of land space to store fuel is the likely cause of the tanker buildup.

Reuters reported on Friday that the rate to book an Aframax tanker has almost doubled from the July figure, partially due to the widespread use of ships as floating storage units.

North Sea producers have upped production as the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) prepares to finalize the term of an output freeze by the end of this month.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

 

LAVROV MAKES HISTORY: ‘Ceasefires’ were bogus, nixes future ‘unilateral measures’ [VIDEO]

LAVROV MAKES HISTORY: ‘Ceasefires’ were bogus, nixes future ‘unilateral measures’ [VIDEO]

Lavrov at today’s security council meeting – Video below after text

Russian Foreign Minister, Sergei Lavrov made history today at the UN’s meeting of the Security Council, declaring that future unilateral pauses couched as ‘ceasefire agreements’ are off the table. He has skillfully referred to the mounting factual evidence of the US’s continued flagrant violations on any number of points of agreement over the course of this conflict.

These include primarily the violations of the ceasefire itself, in conjunction with officially leaked elements of the ‘secret text’ of the recent ceasefire which evidence that the US has been unable to reign in a number of groups signing onto previous ceasefires, let alone those groups the US claims to be moderates but did not sign onto the ceasefire, both of which continue to work closely with either ISIS or Jabat Al-Nusra. Russia has no doubt pointed out successfully that several of these groups are fictional entities, and are but operational synonyms of Al-Nusra (formerly called Al-Qaeda of the Levant), itself.
The impossible to ignore context here naturally is the ceasefire ending US joint attack alongside ISIS upon the Syrian Arab Army position at Deir ez-Zor which was sustained and lasted over an hour, despite calls from the Russian coordinating hotline which existed pursuant to standing agreements on deconfliction.
The other defining circumstances included the response of the US State Department at the emergency session of the UN Security Council a few nights ago, in particular the behaviour and callously undiplomatic remarks of representative Power, and the US’s following attempts to blame Russia for the attack on the Red Crescent aid convoy several days later, which increasingly appears as the result of either Al-Nusra militants on the ground or a US predator drone attack using an incendiary device.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

One More Casualty Of The 9/11 Farce – The Petrodollar

One More Casualty Of The 9/11 Farce – The Petrodollar

It’s been about 15 years now since passenger airliners struck the World Trade Center towers on 9/11, and we are still suffering the consequences of that day, though perhaps not in the ways many Americans might believe.

The 9/11 attacks were billed by the Bush Administration as a “wake-up call” for the U.S., and neocons called it the new Pearl Harbor. But instead of it being an awaking, the American public was led further into blind ignorance. The event launched wars throughout the Middle East, energized by a strike-first doctrine which was supposed to bring unprecedented “democracy” to the region. Instead, the Middle East has now become as unstable as it was during WWII.

The penchant for Western governments to fund and train terrorist groups is now verifiable mainstream fact rather than being considered “conspiracy theory” as was the common accusation back in 2001. Pentagon papers outlining support for the formation of ISIS are available for anyone to read. The only disconnect that the public still seems to suffer from is that orthodox Republicans fail to recognize that the support for Islamic terrorism has been just as prevalent under Republican presidents (al-Qaeda) as it has been under Barack Obama. And, Democrats refuse to recognize that Barack Obama has been guilty of all the same criminal foreign policies they used to protest under George W. Bush.

There have been substantial economic consequences as well. The Iraq War alone is estimated to have cost around $2 trillion, with billions more in veteran benefits forthcoming. These numbers, of course, stop accounting for costs after 2010, when the war was deemed officially “over.” Costs continue to this day as the U.S. maintains its military presence in the region along with thousands of private contractors we rarely ever hear about.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Affairs of State

Insulting Mr. Erdoğan Can Be Dangerous

Most of our readers are probably aware by now that the German government finds itself in a rather awkward situation over its relations with Turkey’s government again – with which the EU has just struck a widely criticized and very expensive deal to help it stem the flood of refugees.

One thing is absolutely certain about Turkey’s president Recep Tayyip Erdoğan: He has no sense of humor whatsoever.  As of early March 2016, 1,845 lawsuits were pending in Turkey for “insulting the president”. To see how extremely ridiculous most of these cases are, consider the one involving the pictures below:

golloerd22aBilgin Çiftçi was fired from his job at Turkey’s public health service last October and detained after comparing Erdoğan to Gollum. He could face up to two years in prison. His lawyer Hicran Danisman said she was forced to argue in court that “Gollum is not a bad character” because she “got nowhere with a defense case based on freedom of expression”. The trial has now been adjourned to give the court time to “consult with a group of experts on whether Gollum is a good or a bad character”.

Two prominent Turkish journalists are even facing possible life sentences over what appear to be trumped-up treason charges after they reported on Turkey’s shady dealings with ISIS. A great many other journalists have lost their jobs and/ or are at risk of getting jail sentences. Not surprisingly, Turkey currently finds itself on place 149 of 180 on the global press freedom list. In short, it is quite dangerous to criticize or make fun of Mr. Erdoğan. This is a great pity, considering what an extremely inviting target he is.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Is the US trying to destroy ISIS?

Stop Bombing Syria 4ad41

Someone asked me to find war lies during the past few years. Perhaps they had in mind the humanitarian pretenses around attacking Libya in 2011 and Iraq in 2014, or the false claims about chemical weapons in 2013, or the lies about an airplane in Ukraine or the endlessly reported Russian invasions of Ukraine. Maybe they were thinking of the “ISIS Is In Brooklyn” headlines or the routine false claims about the identities of drone victims or the supposedly imminent victory in Afghanistan or in one of the other wars. The lies seem far too numerous for me to fit into an essay, though I’ve tried many times, and they are layered over a bedrock of more general lies about what works, what is legal, and what is moral. Just a Prince Tribute selection of lies could include Qadaffi’s viagra for the troops and CNN’s sex-toys flag as evidence of ISIS in Europe. It’s hard to scrape the surface of all U.S. war lies in something less than a book, which is why I wrote a book.

So, I replied that I would look for war lies just in 2016. But that was way too big as well, of course. I once tried to find all the lies in one speech by Obama and ended up just writing about the top 45. So, I’ve taken a glance at two of the most recent speeches on the White House website, one by Obama and one by Susan Rice. I think they provide ample evidence of how we’re being lied to.

In an April 13th speech to the CIA, President Barack Obama declared, “One of my main messages today is that destroying ISIL continues to be my top priority.”

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Syrian Elections Prove Again That Washington And Its Presstitutes Lie Through Their Teeth

Syrian Elections Prove Again That Washington And Its Presstitutes Lie Through Their Teeth

Today (April 14) Syria held parliamentary elections at 7,000 polling stations, keeping the voting open an extra five hours to accommodate the massive turnout. All were allowed to vote, even displaced Syrians from the two provinces still terrorized by Washington and Israeli backed ISIS.

Washington is angry, because Syria held elections before Washington had time to purchase its slate of politicians and organize Washington-funded NGOs to take to the streets to protest and to claim that Assad had stolen the election.

Despite the massive voter turnout and extended hours for voting, the US State Department set the tone by declaring that the elections are not legitimate in Washington’s eyes and do not represent “the will of the Syrian people.”

Washington’s two-bit punk vassals in London and Paris chimed in with both claiming that the war conditions in Syria to which London and Paris have contributed mean that the idea of elections is “totally unrealistic.”

The New York Times lied, characteristically, that the elections, which seem to demonstrate nationwide solidarity against the Western-backed overthrow of the Syrian government, “highlight divisions and uncertainty.” The Washington Post added its lies and misrepresentations to the propagandistic reporting.

The Western governments are far out on a limb with their lies that the Syrian people prefer to be governed by the Washington supported terrorists who were overrunning their country and conducting with Western supplied weapons mass murder on the Syrian people until Russia put a stop to it. Now the Western liars are exposed yet again by election results, and so the liars must pretend that the election lacks validity.

Contrast the reports coming from the Western conspirators against Syria with the news report by Vanessa Beeley in 21st Century Wire: http://21stcenturywire.com/2016/04/14/syrian-elections-2016-us-nato-criminals-liars-and-hypocrites-failed-attempt-to-deny-the-will-of-the-syrian-people/

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Duping Progressives into Wars

Duping Progressives into Wars


In a recent two-part series in The New York Times laid out in detail the pivotal role that then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton played in President Obama’s decision to join in France and Britain’s 2011 military campaign against long-time Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi. The Times articles make the case that Clinton bears a heavy part of the responsibility for the tragic, increasingly chaotic aftermath of that campaign in which Gaddafi was ousted and killed.

As The Times summaries of the articles put it, Gaddafi’s fall “seemed to vindicate Hillary Clinton. Then militias refused to disarm, neighbors fanned a civil war, and the Islamic State found refuge,” leaving Libya “a failed state and a terrorist haven.”

Ousted Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi shortly before he was murdered on Oct. 20, 2011.

Ousted Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi shortly before he was murdered on Oct. 20, 2011.

While neocons, right-wingers and humanitarian interventionists back in 2011 were seeking regime change in Libya, there was one non-governmental organization that was alone among progressive groups in mobilizing public opinion around the world in support of military action in Libya in the form of “a no-fly zone.”

And this wasn’t just any organization, but the fast-growing, on-line advocacy giant Avaaz.org, which in 2011 had seven million members and today boasts 43.1-million members in 194 countries. As such, the New York City-based Avaaz is, as we noted in a previous article, the largest and most influential Internet-based, international advocacy organization on the planet.

Through its members’ petitions and a full-page ad last June in The New York Times, Avaaz has for the last few years been pushing for “a no-fly zone” in Syria, as have assorted neocons and war-hawks in Congress and think-tanks who favor military operations to remove Syrian President Bashar al-Assad from power.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Stéphane Dion approves export permits for $11B in LAVs to be sent to Saudi Arabia

Stéphane Dion approves export permits for $11B in LAVs to be sent to Saudi Arabia

Documents say past sales have not been linked to violations of civil or political rights in the kingdom

Media placeholder

Documents obtained by CBC News are shedding light on the strategy the federal government is using to justify the sale of light armoured vehicles to Saudi Arabia.

The newly revealed documents from Global Affairs Canada confirm that Foreign Affairs Minister Stéphane Dion has signed off on export permits to ship $11 billion worth of the $15-billion vehicle sale to the desert kingdom.

These documents also say that it’s rare for a foreign affairs minister to personally sign off on export permits, but that this is an exception because the deal is so high profile — and worth so much money.

The deal with Saudi Arabia was struck by Stephen Harper’s government, and when it was announced the Conservatives used the opportunity to tout the thousands of jobs it would create and sustain in southern Ontario.

But since the sale of vehicles by General Dynamics Land Systems was announced, questions have emerged over Saudi Arabia’s human rights record.

Saudi rights violations noted

The documents acknowledge these concerns noting; “the reported high number of executions, suppression of political opposition, the application of corporal punishment, suppression of freedom of expression, arbitrary arrest, ill-treatment of detainees, limitations of freedom of religion, discrimination against women and the mistreatment of migrant workers.”

The document goes on to say that Canadian officials “engage regularly with Saudi officials” when required to raise human rights issues of concern while at the same time describing Canada’s military alliance with the kingdom as having been “cemented” during the 1991 Persian Gulf War.

“Saudi Arabia is a key military ally supporting international efforts to counter ISIS in Iraq and Syria as well as countering instability in Yemen,” the documents says.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

NATO as a War-Racket

NATO as a War-Racket

NATO is the anti-Russia military club of nations, even after the communist Soviet Union and its military club against the U.S., the Warsaw Pact, ended in 1991 — NATO didn’t reciprocate that by ending itself, as it should have done (and would have done if the U.S. President at the time, George Herbert Walker Bush, had had any basic decency; instead, he said in private, “To hell with that; we won, they didn’t!” but he continued telling Gorbachev that NATO wouldn’t move “one inch to the east” — which promise he was planning to violate, and which his successors have been violating). 

With the Soviet Union and its Warsaw Pact gone, NATO’s claimed raison d’etre was also gone, but NATO shamelessly continued on, and it even has expanded right up to Russia’s borders (just try to imagine what John Fitzgerald Kennedy would have thought if it hadn’t been Soviet nuclear missiles merely in Cuba in 1962, but all surrounding the U.S. — and that’s the situation today but reversed: today’s Russia is in the situation of 1962’s U.S., but even more so, though NATO has the audacity to accuse Russia of ‘aggression’ for, essentially, defending itself from NATO — from the enemies that are increasingly surrounding it!). (Yes, what America has been doing, really, is that bad.)

On April 6th, NATO’s Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg (son of Norway’s Defense Minister) said that NATO must now expand outside Europe and North America:

Millions fleeing the region in a humanitarian crisis of a magnitude not seen since World War Two.Terrorist groups like ISIL taking hold of ungoverned spaces. And spreading violence across the region and beyond. Inciting attacks on our streets. From Brussels to Istanbul, Paris to San Bernardino. These are attacks on our open societies. On the values we share. 

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Blowback Denial, Climate Denial, and Apocalypse

Sanders Trump 6f237

Last week Donald Trump suggested something Bernie Sanders would never dare: getting rid of NATO. I took some time to read people’s comments and tweets online about it, and a huge number seemed to believe that NATO and the U.S. military have been performing a service for Europe, and that it’s time for Europe to pay its own bills. But will someone explain to me what the service is?

The United States dragged NATO into a — thus far — over-14-year-long war on the people of Afghanistan that has turned a country in poor shape into hell on earth, compounding the damage inflicted by U.S. (and Soviet) policies since the 1970s.

The United States dragged European nations into a disastrous war in Iraq in 2003, without NATO. But when Belgium allowed a prosecution of U.S. commander in Iraq Tommy Franks to move forward, Donald Rumsfeld threatened to move NATO headquarters out of Brussels. Franks’ apparent crimes suddenly became part of a noble and legal humanitarian effort.

The United States and France used NATO to destroy Libya in 2011 and proliferate weapons across the region. The United States and Turkey have been compounding the chaos by generating reasons for NATO to exist in Syria. And perhaps NATO headquarters views the wars that created ISIS, and the U.S. support for Al Qaeda in Syria in just those terms. But to an ordinary observer, a war on terrorism that continues to increase terrorism has a fundamental flaw.

Former CIA Bin Laden Unit Chief Michael Scheuer says the more the U.S. fights terrorism the more it creates terrorism. U.S. Lt. General Michael Flynn, who quit as head of the Pentagon’s Defense Intelligence Agency in 2014, says blowing people up with missiles is generating more blowback, not less. The CIA’s own report says drone killing is counterproductive.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

A European PATRIOT Act Will Not Keep People Safe

A European PATRIOT Act Will Not Keep People Safe

Likewise, European governments have been very active in the five-year, US-led effort to overthrow the Assad government in Syria. This foolish move has boosted both ISIS and al-Qaeda in Syria to the point where they nearly over-ran the country late last year. It has also led millions to flee their war-torn country for a Europe that has opened its doors with the promise of generous benefits to anyone who can make it there.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Bombshell: King Of Jordan Blames Turkey For Terror In Europe, Says Israel “Looks Other Way” On Al-Qaeda

Bombshell: King Of Jordan Blames Turkey For Terror In Europe, Says Israel “Looks Other Way” On Al-Qaeda

When Vladimir Putin told the world that ISIS gets a significant portion of its funding by selling oil to Turkey, he had just finished meeting with Jordan’s King Abdullah.

The King is no stranger to confronting the jihadists. Last year, Abdullah threatened to fly combat missions against Islamic State himself following the release of a horrific video that depicted a Jordanian pilot being burned alive in a cage.

Here is the picture the King sent to the militants:

In January, Jordan agreed to share intelligence with Russia in the fight against ISIS and when the French began flying sorties against the extremists following the Paris attacks, their staging ground was an undisclosed Jordanian location.

In short, Jordan has at times appeared to be more genuine in its commitment to fighting extremism than say, the Saudis, whose determination to spread Wahhabism adds fuel to the ideological fire that drives the groups the kingdom claims to be fighting. “The global war — what I call the Third World War by other means — is one that is a generational one,” Abdullah told CNN in January. “Not only inside Islam, as we as Muslims gain the supremacy against the crazies, the outlaws, of our religion, but also reaching out to other religions that Islam is not what they have seen being perpetuated by 0.1% of our religion.”

On Friday, we learn that Abdullah met with US lawmakers in secret during the week of January 11 and disclosed that British SAS forces as well as Jordanian soldiers had been on the ground fighting ISIS in Libya since at least the beginning of the year. ”

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Tomgram: Gregory Foster, A Case for Demilitarizing the Military

Tomgram: Gregory Foster, A Case for Demilitarizing the Military

Meanwhile, General David Rodriguez, head of U.S. Africa Command (AFRICOM), pressed by Senator John McCain in congressional testimony, called on the U.S. to “do more” to deal with IS supporters in Libya.  And lo and behold, the New York Times reported that Secretary of Defense Ashton Carter had only recently presented an AFRICOM and Joint Special Operations Command plan to the president’s “top national security advisers.”  They were evidently “surprised” to discover that it involved potentially wide-ranging air strikes against 30 to 40 IS targets across that country.  Meanwhile, in Afghanistan — U.S. Special Operations units and regular troops having recently been rushed once again into embattled Helmand Province in the heartland of that country’s opium poppy trade — General Austen and others are calling for a reconsideration of future American drawdowns and possibly the dispatch of more troops to that country.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Olduvai II: Exodus
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Olduvai
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Olduvai II: Exodus
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Olduvai III: Cataclysm
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