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Presidential Bomb Threats at the UN

Presidential Bomb Threats at the UN

Photo by Nathaniel St. Clair

Donald Trump denounced North Korea and its president Kim Jong-un as “depraved” before the United Nations Sept. 19, saying the nation “threatens the entire world with unthinkable loss of life.” Of course, North Korea can barely feed itself, and yet has to defend itself against an onslaught of Western hostility, UN sanctions, and ongoing US/South Korean war games which are rehearsals for an invasion of the North. It tests rockets and bombs to be sure, just as the US and its allies and adversaries do all year round. It’s big business.

Trump’s claim that North Korea is threatening is preposterous since it has no deliverable nuclear weapons at all. Secretary of Defense James Mattis said last week that North Korea is no danger to the United States. In June 2016, the Institute for Science and International Security reported that Pyongyang may have between 13 and 21 warheads. The CIA, whose job it is to find hostile weapons (even where they don’t exist) says Pyongyang has at most about 21. US intelligence agencies’ combined estimates are that while it may have miniaturized a nuclear warhead, North Korea has no missile that can drop them on the United States. The Federation of American Scientists is more skeptical and estimates it has “potentially produce[d] 10-20 nuclear warheads.”

Like an 8th grade imbecile contradicting and humiliating himself in nearly every sentence, Trump claimed in his speech that North Korean President Kim Jong-un “is on a suicide mission.” In April 2016 Trump had called Kim a “smart cookie.” There is absolutely no evidence of Kim being suicidal, in fact quite the opposite since the North’s military missile and nuclear program are aimed at fending off a repeat of the Korean War in which, according to US Air Force General Curtis LeMay, “we burned down every town in North Korea.”

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

More Thoughts on Trump’s UN Declaration of War Against Iran and North Korea

More Thoughts on Trump’s UN Declaration of War Against Iran and North Korea

 

Trump’s UN speech makes it clear that Trump’s presidency, in terms of his campaign promise to remove Washington from the “policeman of the world” role, exit the Middle East, and repair the damaged relations with Russia, is over. The CIA and the military/security complex are in full control of the US government. Trump has accepted his captivity and his assigned role as the enforcer of Washington’s hegemony over every other country. Washington uber alles is the only foreign policy that Washington pursues.

At the UN Trump actually threatened to wipe North Korea off of the face of the earth. He added to this threat threats against Venezuela (http://stephenlendman.org/2017/09/trump-threatens-venezuela/) and Iran. He demonized these countries as “rogue states,” but it is Washington that is playing that role. Washington has destroyed in whole or part eight countries in the young 21st century and has 3 to 5 more in its crosshairs.

One question is: why did not the UN audience shout Trump down, a man standing before them telling obvious lies? The answer, of course, is money. The US taxpayers pay roughly one-quarter of the UN’s annual budget, leaving the other 130+ countries a light load. Washington is succeeding in driving the world to Armageddon, because the world’s leaders prefer money to truth, to justice, to survival. The UN diplomats see in their cooperation with Washington the opportunity to make money by sharing in the West’s exploitation of their own countries.

Washington, absorbed in its effort to destroy Syria, left it to its Saudi Arabian puppet to destroy Yemen. The Saudi autocracy, a major sponsor with the US of terrorism, has done a good job, thanks to US supplying the weapons and to the US refueling the Saudi attack airplanes.

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

The Empire’s Hustle: Why Anti-Trumpism Doesn’t Include Anti-War

The Empire’s Hustle: Why Anti-Trumpism Doesn’t Include Anti-War

Photo by Xavi | CC BY 2.0

Libertarian U.S. Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) declared from the Senate floor last week in anticipation of the vote on the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) of 2018:

“I rise today to oppose unauthorized, undeclared and unconstitutional war…What we have today is basically unlimited war, anywhere, anytime, any place upon the globe.”

With these words, Paul became one of the few voices to oppose the obscenity that is known as U.S. war policy. But only two other senators joined him: Bernie Sanders (I-VT) and Ron Wyden (D-OR).  But there is a wrinkle here: Paul is not concerned with the size of the military budget. He’s pointing his finger at the continuation of the Authorization to Use Military Force Act (AUMF) of 2001, which was the “legal” basis for the U.S. global “war on terror.” He wants Congress to re-assess this legislation that has prompted endless wars abroad.

After Paul’s amendment to the NDAA was defeated, the Senate went on to approve it with a vote of 89-9 Monday in what the New York Times correctly identified as a bi-partisan effort, to authorize a military budget of $696 billion—an increase in the military budget of almost $75 billion  and well over the $54 billion that Pres. Donald Trump had originally proposed.

The very next day, Trump appeared before the United Nations and threatened to destroy North Korea, subvert Venezuela, and undermine the nuclear agreement with Iran, which could lead to military conflict with that nation.

Obscuring the Bi-Partisan Defense of Empire

Nothing rehabilitates an unpopular president in capitalist “America” like war. In fact, the only sustained negative press that Barack Obama received was when he seemed reluctant to fully immerse the United States in direct efforts to cause regime change in Syria by attacking that nation and committing to significant “boots on the ground.”

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

The danger of patriotism

The danger of patriotism

My friends, it is frightening how simple we are and how easily we are manipulated simply because we are intellectually lazy.

The U.S. establishment has confused cause and effect by and through a flag-waving mania in America. “Patriotism” throughout history has covered a multitude of mischief. We are seeing it now!

Phony patriotism is strong leverage against a population ignorant of the ways of treason by its own government. I also have no doubt that U.S. history is full of wars “for democracy” killing millions under the propaganda of patriotism with the majority support of the people and the full support of all but a small cadre of “elected representatives” — who are paid by the federal government, incidentally. In addition the millions of foreign dead, these wars have left hundreds of thousands of American military members dead or maimed physically and/or emotionally.

The whole world knows about the U.S. military industrial complex war machine and its pursuit of profits. But Americans tend to turn a blind eye.

When George Washington said “government is force,” he meant that government is force against its own people.

Since by definition government is force, then it follows that government will use any ruse imaginable to increase its power. Increased use of government force or power could backfire unless skillfully handled and justified in the public mind. Therefore governments rarely take action unless accompanied by skillful propaganda.

The brouhaha over certain NFL players’ refusal to stand for the playing of the Star Spangled Banner has erupted anew. The reaction of most Americans — who claim to believe in the Constitution and Bill of Rights — is that this expression cannot be tolerated… it is un-American… it is “unpatriotic.”

But is it? Or is it not the most American of all things to resist and rebel against what we perceive as tyranny and its symbols?

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

Liberals Don’t Respect a Nation’s Sovereignty

Liberals Don’t Respect a Nation’s Sovereignty

Liberals Don’t Respect a Nation’s Sovereignty

When the United States and some of its allies in 2003 invaded and destroyed Iraq on false pretenses — and without Iraq having ever invaded (much less destroyed) any of the invading countries — this was actually within the scope of the invaders being liberal countries, because a nation’s sovereignty isn’t at all respected in traditional liberal thought. This also is the reason why some of the same nations invaded and destroyed Libya in 2011, and Syria since 2012. Neither of those two invaded countries had ever invaded — much less destroyed — any of their invaders; but, in all of these cases, such invasions were accepted by the populace within each of the invading countries, all of which invading countries considered themselves to be liberal nations. Why do liberals (and not only conservatives) so routinely accept barbaric aggressions by their own country? Here is the reason (and it needs to be read slowly and carefully, in order to become understood, because what follows is densely packed with meaning; the subject here is sufficiently deep to reach the core of things, like drilling through hard rock — it’s necessarily slow going):

A nation’s sovereignty means that the residents in a land possess the ultimate authority over that land, regardless of what its ‘owner’ might happen to be: a foreign king, an international corporation, or even a domestic person who is one of the people who live there. Consequently, whereas an authentic revolution by the residents within a country, to overthrow and replace their government — or else a vote to secede — is acceptable in the concept of national sovereignty (and is recognized as “the right of self-determination”), no foreign invasion is (and this includes any internal invasion to defeat a secession), unless the invasion is authentically a response to a real and present danger of, or else in direct response to, an invasion by the country (or region) that’s being invaded.

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

Fearful Californians Prepare For A Nuclear Attack: “A Lot Of People Will Be Killed”

Fearful Californians Prepare For A Nuclear Attack: “A Lot Of People Will Be Killed”

With each passing day and each new ICBM launch from a seemingly unhinged North Korean dictator, the fears of an attack on the U.S. mainland, though faint, increasingly weigh on the hearts and minds of Americans, particularly those in California.  As The Guardian points out today, those fears have even prompted a group of California public health officials and emergency responders to gather for a strategy session with Hal Kempfer, a retired marine lieutenant colonel, to discuss which areas are the most likely targets and how citizens should respond to an attack.

Hal Kempfer, a noted international security expert, is getting a roomful of California public health officials and emergency responders to think about the unthinkable – a nuclear bomb exploding at the port of Long Beach, about four miles away.

“A lot of people will be killed,” he said, “but a large percentage of the population will survive. They will be at risk and they will need help.”

“If you want to mess up southern California, if you want to mess up the west coast, if you want to mess up our country – where do you attack?” Kempfer asks. “If I’m sitting in North Korea and looking at possible targets, I’m going to be looking at Long Beach very closely.”

He talks about the port and downtown Long Beach being “toast” – no exaggeration, since the blast wave is likely to vaporize everything in its immediate path. But the city health department, the Long Beach airport and fire department might not be; they are all somewhat protected by a hilly area that is likely to halt the initial blast wave. And so the city can, tentatively, think about setting up a center of emergency operations.

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

South Korea President Threatens To Destroy North “Beyond Recovery”, Warns Of Accidental War

South Korea President Threatens To Destroy North “Beyond Recovery”, Warns Of Accidental War

Following the latest ballistic missile launch from North Korea, South Korea’s president Moon Jae-in warned that further provocations could result in the complete destruction “beyond recovery” of the northern neighbor. He also repeated tjat the possibility of opening a dialogue with the belligerent North is now gone.

“In case North Korea undertakes provocations against us or our ally, we have the power to destroy (the North) beyond recovery,” the South Korean leader said on Friday according to Yonhap.

Seoul immediately convened a National Security Council meeting following the latest launch by North Korea, in which Moon condemned the missile test, saying the North had once again breached United Nations Security Council resolutions and “poses a grave challenge to the peace and stability of the Korean Peninsula and the global community,” according to RT’s Ruptly news agency.

“I sternly condemn and express anger at this series of provocations by the North,” Moon was quoted as saying.

The South Korean president also said that dialogue between the South and the North is currently impossible and called for greater pressure on the North. “Dialogue is impossible in a situation like this,” Moon said.

“International sanctions and pressure will further tighten to force North Korea to choose no other option but to step forward on the path to genuine dialogue.”

South Korea also should be prepared to new types of threats from the North, including biological ones and electromagnetic pulse (EMP) weapons, Yonhap reports citing presidential spokesman Park Soo-hyun. Even as Seoul still wants to wants use diplomatic means to solve the crisis on the Korean Peninsula and put an end to Pyongyang’s nuclear and missile programs, it has been pushing for cooperation with the US in the defense sphere. President Moon called for an early revision of the agreement with US President Donald Trump, allowing the deployment of heavier warheads on South Korean missiles.

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

America’s Fragile Future

America’s Fragile Future

The U.S. mainstream’s flailing about over alleged Russian “meddling” in American politics reflects a nation that is rapidly losing its global dominance and fearful of even the slightest challenge, as Gilbert Doctorow explains.


Does the United States have a future as a great power?

President Donald J. Trump and President Emmanuel Macron on July 13, 2017. (Official White House Photo by Shealah Craighead)

Twenty years ago posing this question would have seemed absurd. The United States was fully self- confident about its position as the sole surviving superpower in the world. It faced virtually no obstacles or objections to its performance on behalf of the “public good,” a process that supposedly brought order to the world either through the liberal international institutions that it helped to create after World War Two and dominated, or through unilateral action when necessary via “coalitions of the willing” aimed at bringing down one or another disruptive malefactor on a regional stage.

From many voices abroad it heard “amen” to its claims of exceptionalism and farther-seeing vision that came from its standing taller, as Secretary of State Madeleine Albright put it. The “indispensable nation.”

Fourteen years ago, when America prepared for its ill-conceived invasion of Iraq and encountered loud resistance from France and Germany, backed up by Russia, it became possible to wonder whether U.S. global hegemony could last. The disaster that the Iraqi adventure quickly became within a year of George W. Bush declaring “mission accomplished” rolled on and progressively diminished the enthusiasm of allies and others hitherto on the U.S. bandwagon for each new project to re-engineer troublesome nations, to overthrow autocrats and usher in an age of “liberal democracy” across the globe.

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

Why one US Marine renounced war after 9/11 [OPINION]

Why one US Marine renounced war after 9/11

Why one US Marine renounced war after 9/11 [OPINION]

The fires which began with the 9/11 attacks were never extinguished. They continue to burn fiercely from Afghanistan to Iraq to Syria to Yemen to North Africa, as the region and its regimes came unglued in the wake of George W. Bush’s ‘war on terror’.

The 15th anniversary of 9/11 was marked in America with the usual sombre memorials and directives to ‘never forget‘.

But this definitive 9/11 slogan always takes me back to the overwhelming tide of pro-war fervour that swept the US and stifled any deeper reflection or debate in the years after 11 September 2001. Sadly, I was part of that fervour – and this too I will never forget.

The militarism of my youth

I joined the US Marine Corps as an idealistic 18-year-old in 2000, with a firm resolve – as I enthusiastically told my military recruiter shortly before leaving for boot camp – to “fight evil in the world”. This resolve was rooted more deeply in my veins after the 9/11 attacks. As a relatively new marine, I had temporarily worked at the Pentagon while attached to a headquarters computer programming unit in the two months just prior to that tragic day, and was fortunate not to be there when it was attacked.

After the smoke cleared in New York, Pennsylvania, and at the Pentagon, I and many others wanted ‘justice’ at all costs against an enemy we were told was present in multiple Middle Eastern countries. Slogans such as ‘let’s roll!’ echoed in my ears, and my fervour for ‘the mission’ influenced others to follow my path of military service.

While stationed in Quantico, outside of Washington DC, I became close friends with a local civilian nearing his high school graduation, and I encouraged him to join the Marine Corps. This occurred just as the Bush administration was making the case for war in Iraq.

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

Rand Paul Takes a Stand Against Unconstitutional War

Rand Paul Takes a Stand Against Unconstitutional War

Rand Paul’s 2016 presidential run was extremely disappointing. Rather than take it hard to the establishment, he seemed more interested in playing footsie with neocons and establishment Republicans. That strategy didn’t work and it never will. Rand Paul is best when he’s acting like a statesman and not a politician — that’s what people who like him, like about him. His campaign advisors were clearly incompetent, but at the end of the day the buck stops with him.

That being said, life is all about learning from your mistakes and Rand has truly started coming into his own in the age of Trump. With much of the party fractured and bickering, Paul seems to have found the space to push forward on key issues such as civil asset forfeiture, prison reform and endless war. He’s serving a very important function within a elitist and crony U.S. Congress and we should all take the time to thank him for his efforts.

His latest stand relates to the 2001 and 2002 Authorizations for the Use of Military Force (AUMF), which has been consistently abused for 16 years by multiple presidents in order to start endless military interventions against new enemies without forcing Congress to uphold its constitutional duty to wage war.

As Senator Paul explained in a recent Rare opinion piece:

As Congress takes up the 2018 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), I will insist it vote on my amendment to sunset the 2001 and 2002 Authorizations for the Use of Military Force.

Why?

Because these authorizations to use military force are inappropriately being used to justify American warfare in 7 different countries. Sunsetting both AUMFs will force a debate on whether we continue the Afghanistan war, the Libya war, the Yemen war, the Syria war, and other interventions.

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

We Need to Admit the Government Story About 9/11 is Bullshit

We Need to Admit the Government Story About 9/11 is Bullshit

It wasn’t just me of course. It was an entire nation that was callously manipulated in the aftermath of that tragedy. The courage and generosity exhibited by so many New Yorkers and others throughout the country and indeed the world was rapidly transformed into terrifying fear. Fear that was intentionally injected repeatedly into our daily lives. Fear that translated into pointless wars and countless deaths. Fear that was used to justify the destruction of our precious civil rights. Fear that was used to initiate a gigantic power grab and the source of tremendous profits for the corporate-statists and crony-capitalsits. Unfortunately, that is the greatest legacy of 9/11.

– From my 2013 post: How I Remember September 11, 2001

Unless we come to terms with 9/11 and the obvious fact that the official government story is a ridiculous fairytale, it’ll be hard for our nation to move forward in an intelligent, courageous and ethical manner. Many of the most destructive trends which have defined our post September 11, 2001 environment, such as a loss of civill liberties and endless barbaric wars of aggression abroad, have been directly related to our false understanding of that awful terrorist attack. As I’ve always maintained, I have no idea what really went down on that day, I just know that the U.S. government and its intelligence agencies are not being honest.

Although it’s been a long time coming, we’re finally uncovering some kernels of truth about the attack and the role Saudi Arabia played in carrying them out. Much of this progress has been driven by family members of those who died, some of whom are suing the Saudis for their role in that despicable slaughter of civilians.

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

Why Presidents Campaign on Peace but Rule by War

Why Presidents Campaign on Peace but Rule by War

(ANTIMEDIA Op-ed)  If the United States government continues as it does today, bestriding the narrow world like a colossus, it will be stabbed through the heart by daggers inscribed with the nation’s founding principles — the words “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness” shedding salty tears of blood from sullied steel.

But I hope this day will not arrive.

I hope we will soon stop simply damning war presidents as hypocrites and killers so we may take the time to see the complex reasons why presidential peace candidates continue to become warmongers.

As a candidate, George W. Bush promised a humble foreign policy.

But as president — especially in reaction to the violent and tragic imperial blowback of 9/11 — humility gave way to hubris. War was not only waged against Bin Laden’s terror network and the Taliban in Afghanistan but also globally against all Terror, a campaign that somehow led U.S. forces to topple a tyrant in Baghdad only to ignite and invite more terror to a fight amongst the rubble.

As a candidate, Barack Obama railed against Bush’s wars of “choice,” promising peace in Baghdad, Kabul, and beyond.

But as president, Obama’s peace prize and campaign promises gave way to more wars of choice.Though Obama “ended” the war in Afghanistan, leaving thousands of troops stationed there, he escalated the Afghan war first. Obama pulled out of Iraq only to topple Gaddafi in Libya. He attempted to topple Assad in Syria only to jump back into Iraq once again to take on ISIS — no doubt an enemy of the United States but an enemy also interested in toppling Assad in Syria. He fought both sides of the same war, inflaming the conflict further. His expanded use of drones is also well documented.

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

CONFIRMED: North Korea has enough oil to survive embargo

CONFIRMED: North Korea has enough oil to survive embargo

While a full scale oil embargo against North Korea is unlikely, the reality is that North Korea would be able to survive such a measure with comparative ease.

The United States has recently suggested a global oil embargo against North Korea, something both China and Russia oppose. The DPRK’s neighbours to the north support UN sanctions against Pyongyang, but have firmly opposed unilateral US sanctions against North Korea.

Russia and China have made a commitment never to support sanctions against Pyongyang which could negatively impact on the civilian population of their neighbour and this would almost certainly include a full-scale oil embargo.

On the contrary, Russia’s plan to de-escalate tensions on the Korean peninsula is to develop trilateral economic initiatives linking South and North Korea to Russia. Given the realities on the peninsula, Russia’s ‘carrot’ is seen as preferable on both sides of the 38th parallel to Washington’s increasingly bellicose ‘stick’.

But even if Donald Trump was somehow able to convince the world to engage in an oil embargo against North Korea, North Korea would appear to have enough domestic oil reserves to make up for the loss of imports.

In addition to large reserves of domestic coal and the increased reliance on green energy in the form of hydroelectric power , North Korea’s domestic oil reserves are likely far greater than previous conservative estimates have indicated.

Even prior to the new threat of sanctions, North Korea has been increasingly self-sufficient in beginning to tap its still largely unused oil reserves.

In 2015, when relations between the DPRK and the rest of the world were somewhat better than they are at present, independent oil exploration expert Michael Rego investigated North Korea’s oil potential.

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

China Warns Trump: “We Will Back North Korea If The US Strikes First”

China Warns Trump: “We Will Back North Korea If The US Strikes First”

All day Saturday, South Korea braced for a possible new missile test by North Korea as the provocative northern neighbor marked its founding anniversary, just days after its sixth and largest nuclear test rattled global financial markets and further escalated tensions in the region. Throughout the week, South Korean officials warned the North could launch another intercontinental ballistic missile, in defiance of U.N. sanctions and to further provoke the US. As Reuters reports, Pyongyang marks its founding anniversary each year with a big display of pageantry and military hardware. Last year, North Korea conducted its fifth nuclear test on the Sept. 9 anniversary.

Ultimately, September 9 came and went, and North Korea did nothing, perhaps signalling its eagerness to de-escalate. Or perhaps not, and Kim is simply looking to surprise his adversaries with the ICBM launch date. Experts have said the rogue, isolated regime is close to its goal of developing a powerful nuclear weapon capable of reaching the United States, something Trump has vowed to prevent.

Celebrating its founding anniversary, a front-page editorial of the Saturday edition of North Korea’s official Rodong Sinmun said the country should make “more high-tech Juche weapons to continuously bring about big historical events such as a miraculous victory of July 28.”. The July date refers to the intercontinental ballistic missile test (Juche is North Korea’s homegrown ideology of self-reliance that is a mix of Marxism and extreme nationalism preached by state founder Kim Il Sung, the current leader’s grandfather).

Meanwhile, South Korean nuclear experts, checking for contamination, said on Friday they had found minute traces of radioactive xenon gas but that it was too early to link it to Sunday’s explosion.

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

U.N. Enablers of ‘Aggressive War’

U.N. Enablers of ‘Aggressive War’

Special Report: U.N. investigative reports, like a new one condemning Syria for alleged sarin use, are received as impartial and credible, but are often just more war propaganda from compromised bureaucrats, reports Robert Parry.


Many people still want to believe that the United Nations engages in impartial investigations and thus is more trustworthy than, say, self-interested governments, whether Russia or the United States. But trust in U.N. agencies is no longer well placed; whatever independence they may have once had has been broken, a reality relevant to recent “investigations” of Syrian chemical weapons use.

There is also the larger issue of the United Nations’ peculiar silence about one of its primary and original responsibilities, shouldered after the horrors of World War II – to stop wars of aggression, which today include “regime change” wars organized, funded and armed by the United States and other Western powers, such as the Iraq invasion in 2003, the overthrow of the Libyan government in 2011, and a series of proxy wars including the ongoing Syrian conflict.

After World War II, the Nuremberg Tribunals declared that a “war of aggression … is not only an international crime; it is the supreme international crime differing only from other war crimes in that it contains within itself the accumulated evil of the whole.”

That recognition became a guiding principle of the United Nations Charter, which specifically prohibits aggression or even threats of aggression against sovereign states.

The Charter declares in Article One that it is a chief U.N. purpose “to take effective collective measures … for the suppression of acts of aggression or other breaches of the peace.” Article Two, which defines the appropriate behavior of U.N. members, adds that “All Members shall refrain in their international relations from the threat or use of force against the territorial integrity or political independence of any state…”

…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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