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Saudi Bases and the Bin Ladens: A Love Story

Saudi Bases and the Bin Ladens: A Love Story

What is Trump really up to? It’s almost unknowable. At the same time that the president was pulling (some) troops out of Northeast Syria, giving an antiwar speech, and then sending other troops back into Syria to “secure the oil,” he also quietly sent another 1800 service members into Saudi Arabia. What little Trump did say about it consisted of a peculiar defense of his actions. Faced with the obvious question from a reporter: “Mr. President, why are you sending more troops to Saudi Arabia when you just said it’s a mistake to be in the Middle East?” Trump argued that there was no contradiction in his policy because, well, the Saudis “buy hundreds of billions of dollars’ worth of merchandise from us,” and have “agreed to pay us for everything we’re doing to help them.” It seems the U.S. military is going full mercenary in the Gulf.

While I’ve noted that Trump’s recent antiwar remarks were profound – though largely unfulfilled – these words will amount to nothing if followed by a military buildup in Saudi Arabia that leads to a new, far more bloody and destabilizing, war with Iran. Nothing would please the “three Bs” – Israeli Prime Minister Bibi Netanyahu, Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman, and former National Security Adviser John Bolton – more than a US military strike on the Islamic Republic, cost and consequences be damned.

It’s just that an Iran war isn’t the only risk associated with basing majority-Christian, foreign American troops in the land of Islam’s two holiest cities. And a brief historical review of US presence in Saudi Arabia demonstrates quite clearly the potential transnational terrorist “blowback” of Washington’s basing decisions. In fact, Trump’s latest deployment constitutes at least the third time the US military has been stationed on the Arabian peninsula.

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

First Images Of US Troops Occupying Syria’s Oil Fields Stir Outrage

First Images Of US Troops Occupying Syria’s Oil Fields Stir Outrage

The reality of American foreign policy all in one stunning image: regional Iraqi Kurdistan24 television has broadcast the first footage of the United States Army seizing and ‘protecting’ a Syrian oil field in the country’s northeast

Specifically the images are of a US armed convoy at Rumelan oil field, and are the first to show Trump’s ordered “secure the oil” policy in action. A Salon op-ed aptly quips in reaction: It’s about the oil, stupid: Trump wants to end the forever wars, except the one about oil and money.”


US forces began patrols at oilfields on Mount Qarachokh near Derik in northeastern #Syria on Friday. #TwitterKurds


Middle East war correspondent Jenan Moussa, who has covered the Iraq war and other US occupations in the region, voiced the growing outrage over the US resource theft underway in Syria:

Since discovery of oil in the MidEast, many in the region said: the U.S. is only here to steal our oil. U.S. denied it, and claimed it’s about democracy, human rights, women etc.

Not sure if Americans realize but these pictures of U.S. troops in northeast Syria are HUGELY damaging to U.S. image.


Since discovery of oil in MidEast, many in region said: U.S. only here to steal our oil.

U.S. denied, claimed it’s about democracy, human rights, women etc.

Not sure if Americans realize but these pictures of U.S. troops in northeast Syria are HUGELY damaging to U.S. image.


One Syrian commentator said sarcastically on social media: 

The Few. The Proud. The Marines. stealing Syria’s oil. 

And further pointed out that, “Trump just showed you the naked truth about US foreign policy in the Middle East.”

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

Assad Calls Trump “Best US President” Ever For “Transparency” Of Real US Motives

Assad Calls Trump “Best US President” Ever For “Transparency” Of Real US Motives

Arguably some of the most significant events since the eight-year long war’s start have played out in Syria with rapid pace over just the last month alone, including Turkey’s military incursion in the north, the US pullback from the border and into Syria’s oil fields, the Kurdish-led SDF’s deal making with Damascus, and the death of ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi. All of this is why a televised interview with President Bashar Assad was highly anticipated at the end of this week. 

Assad’s commentary on the latest White House policy to “secure the oil” in Syria, for which US troops have already been redeployed to some of the largest oil fields in the Deir Ezzor region, was the biggest pressing question. The Syrian president’s response was unexpected and is now driving headlines, given what he said directly about Trump, calling him the “best American president” ever – because he’s the “most transparent.”

“When it comes to Trump you may ask me a question and I’ll give you an answer which might seem strange. I tell you he’s the best American president,” Assad said, according to a translation provided by NBC.

“Why? Not because his policies are good, but because he is the most transparent president,” Assad continued.

“All American presidents commit crimes and end up taking the Nobel Prize and appear as a defender of human rights and the ‘unique’ and ‘brilliant’ American or Western principles. But all they are is a group of criminals who only represent the interests of the American lobbies of large corporations in weapons, oil and others,” he added.

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

A far-right US soldier arrested by the FBI for plotting domestic bomb attacks sought to join Ukraine’s neo-Nazi Azov Battalion, which was directly armed and advised by the American government

azov ballation us
Bomb-plotting extremist American soldier tried to join US-backed neo-Nazi militia in Ukraine

A far-right US soldier arrested by the FBI for plotting domestic bomb attacks sought to join Ukraine’s neo-Nazi Azov Battalion, which was directly armed and advised by the American government

A far-right soldier in the United States Army has been arrested by the FBI for plotting bomb attacks targeting American media outlets and Democratic politicians.

While serving in the US military, this right-wing extremist gave fascist militants in Ukraine and other countries information on how to build bombs, including what he called “cell phone IEDs in the style of the Afghans.”

The FBI said he had also planned to travel to Ukraine in order to join the Azov Battalion, a neo-Nazi militia that has for years been directly supported by the US government.

In its court filing, the FBI described the Azov Battalion as a “violent far-right paramilitary group.” Yet it failed to disclose that this fascist militia has been armed and advised by American military officials in order to turn up the heat on Russia.

Publicly available photos show US military advisers directly meeting with the Ukrainian neo-Nazi militia — but the complete lack of critical coverage from a compliant mainstream media has ensured that few Americans know about their government’s double game with fascists.

The shocking arrest of the US soldier is the latest example in a long list of cases of what intelligence agencies refer to as “blowback,” when US government support for extremist foreign proxies fuels violent terrorism back at home.

US Army soldier teaching far-right extremists how to make bombs

The FBI filed a criminal complaint in Kansas district court on Monday, September 23, revealing that it had arrested US Army infantry soldier Jarrett William Smith for the alleged crime of “Distributing Information Relating to Explosives, Destructive Devices, and Weapons of Mass Destruction.”

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

US Troops and Tanks Headed to Lithuania for ‘Extended Mission’

US Troops and Tanks Headed to Lithuania for ‘Extended Mission’

Officials say deployment meant to ‘deter Russia’

Lithuania’s Defense Ministry has announced a new deployment of US troops to their country. The deployment will include a number of US soldiers, tanks, and fighting vehicles, and will be an “extended mission.”

The deployment is being presented by Lithuanian officials as proof of a “larger, long-term US military involvement in Lithuania,” while others say it is meant to deter Russian aggression.

The deployment is part of the US Army’s Atlantic Resolve campaign, which has been ongoing since 2014, and has focused on sending more and more US military assets to Baltic states and other nations near the Russian frontier. 

The new US troops will be stationed in Pabrade, a town along the border with Belarus. They sayover 500 troops, 30 Abrams tanks, 25 Bradleys, and 70 other vehicles will be involved.

US Defends Your Freedom By Using Troops As Saudi Oil Security Guards

US Defends Your Freedom By Using Troops As Saudi Oil Security Guards

If you’ve been lying awake at night terrified that the Pentagon might not send additional troops and armaments to defend oil corporations in Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, I’ve got some great news for you.

In response to an attack on Saudi Aramco oil infrastructure for which Houthi rebels in Yemen have taken credit, the US government has responded in the only possible rational way: by blaming Iran and deploying troops to act as security guards for Middle Eastern oil companies.

“In response to the kingdom’s request, the president has approved the deployment of U.S. forces, which will be defensive in nature and primarily focused on air and missile defense,” Defense Secretary Mark Esper informed the press yesterday. “We will also work to accelerate the delivery of military equipment to the kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the UAE to enhance their ability to defend themselves.”

So you can breathe easy, my friend. Freedom and democracy are safe once more.


JUST IN: Pentagon to will deploy additional troops and military equipment to Saudi Arabia: “In response to the Kingdom’s request, the president has approved the deployment of U.S. forces, which will be defensive in nature and primarily focused on air and missile defense.”


A lot of delusional, unpatriotic democracy haters like to argue that the US military doesn’t actually defend the freedom of the American people, and that it isn’t really used to defend freedom at all, and that it isn’t even really used to defend any rules-based international order as sometimes claimed, and that even to use the word “defend” to describe anything the US military does is inaccurate since it is consistently on the attacking and aggressing side of any given conflict…

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

“A 6th Grader Should Know America’s Foreign Policy Is Ridiculous”

“A 6th Grader Should Know America’s Foreign Policy Is Ridiculous”

Policies which can ensure peace or ignite wars are important. Given this, one might think more Americans would critically examine the basic assumptions which form the basis of our nation’s foreign policy. 

As best I can tell, only three such assumptions or premises exist:

  1. To defend America and its borders, our government must posses the world’s strongest military. It should also not be reticent about using – or threatening to use – said military.
  2. The freedoms Americans cherish are fragile, and bad actors are plotting to steal them from us.
  3. If reasons 1 and 2 are not persuasive enough, or do not apply to every geopolitical situation, America must still be willing to use its military to protect its “national interests.”

All three of these assumptions are ridiculous, a fact any bright 12-year-old should recognize.

Regarding Assumption 1 – Surely any American with a 6th grade education is aware of the fact that the world’s two largest oceans happen to  “guard” the east and west coasts of the American mainland. Furthermore, any 12-year-old should know that the probability America’s neighbors to the north and south would attack our country is zero.point.zero. What this means to you and me is that if America proper is going to be attacked (and subdued), it’s going to have to be attacked by a nation a vast distance from our borders.

By the time a conscientious student reaches 10th grade he or she should be able to identify the tiny number of nations that might possess the means to occupy or “take over” America. These nations can be counted on three fingers – Russia, China and (if we really want to stretch things) Germany.

However, plenty of high school students should be inquisitive enough to ask a common-sense question: Why would these nations attempt to do such a thing?

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

Instigators of a Persian Gulf Crisis

Instigators of a Persian Gulf Crisis

Photograph Source: Mehrnews – CC BY 4.0

Recent weeks have seen tensions between the United States and Iran soar, initially after a May 2019 incident in which four commercial vessels were struck in the Gulf of Oman (two Saudi oil tankers, one Norwegian and an Emirati ship), ebb thereafter and escalate yet again when a similar attack took place a month later on the Japanese Kokuka Courageous and Norwegian Front Altair tankers, also in the Gulf of Oman. Tellingly, when it appeared the war rhetoric had subsided after the first incident it quickly ratcheted up, and by several degrees, after the second, as if the May episode had failed to achieve its goal. President Trump’s apparent last-minute change of heart in calling off planned airstrikes when Iran downed a U.S. military surveillance drone last Thursday highlights the war footing Washington is on.

Both tanker assaults were allegedly at the hands of Iran, that is, according to Saudi King Salman, Crown Prince Muhammad bin Salman, U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and National Security Advisor John Bolton, albeit by unclear means and for dubious reasons.

It did not take long for doubts to surface as to why Iran would attack a Japanese tanker in the midst of Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s visit to Tehran in an attempt to mediate between it and Washington. The suspect authenticity of a grainy video released by U.S. Central Command purportedly showing an Iranian patrol boat removing an unexploded limpet mine from the tanker also raised skepticism (the crew indicated they were hit by a flying objectnot a mine).

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

Why Everyone in the U.S. Who Counts Wants Julian Assange Dead

Why Everyone in the U.S. Who Counts Wants Julian Assange Dead

Before and after images of the van that came to pick up the bodies of eleven men shot to death by circling American helicopters in Iraq in 2007. Both children in the van were wounded. “Well, it’s their fault for bringing their kids to a battle,” said one of the pilots. “That’s right,” replies another. From the video Collateral Murder.

Below is a full video version of Collateral Murder, the 2007 war footage that was leaked in 2010 to Wikileaks by Chelsea (then Bradley) Manning. This version was posted to the Wikileaks YouTube channel with subtitles. It will only take about 15 minutes of your life to view it.

It’s brutal to watch, but I challenge you to do it anyway. It shows not just murder, but a special kind of murder — murder from the safety of the air, murder by men with heavy machine guns slowly circling their targets in helicopters like hunters with shotguns who walk the edges of a trout pond, shooting at will, waiting, walking, then shooting again, till all the fish are dead. 

The film also shows war crimes that implicate the entire structure of the U.S. military, as everyone involved was acting under orders, seeking permission to fire, waiting, then getting it before once more blasting away. The publication of this video, plus all the Wikileaks publications that followed, comprise the whole reason everyone in the U.S. who matters, everyone with power, wants Julian Assange dead.

They also want him hated. Generating that hate is the process we’re watching today. 

“Everyone” in this case includes every major newspaper that published and received awards for publishing Wikileaks material; all major U.S. televised media outlets; and all “respectable” U.S. politicians — including, of course, Hillary Clinton, who was rumored (though unverifiably) to have said, “Can’t we just drone this guy?”

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

Cuba Accuses US Of Preparing For Military Action In Venezuela

Cuba Accuses US Of Preparing For Military Action In Venezuela 

At a Havana press conference Tuesday, the Cuban government accused the Trump administration of preparing a military operation against Venezuela, suggesting that humanitarian aid is a pretext for intervention.

“You’re starting to see American military transports that originate in U.S. military installations, where marine infantry and special forces operate and plan covert action,” Cuban Foreign Minister Bruno Rodriguez said in Havana.

Rodriguez told journalists that the US military is quickly building up assets unbeknownst to Caribbean governments where their bases are located.

Journalists questioned what evidence Cuba has the US is preparing to stage a military operation to overthrow Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro. Rodriguez told Local 10’s Cuba correspondent Hatzel Vela to examine the airports where he would uncover evidence of the buildup.

At a speech in Miami on Monday, President Trump called on the Venezuelan military to overthrow Maduro whose failed socialist policies have turned the oil-rich country into an economic hellhole. Trump’s speech came two weeks after Washington imposed new sanctions against Venezuela’s national oil company, a move that could topple the finances of the Maduro regime.

President Trump on Venezuela: “We seek a peaceful transition of power, but all options are open” https://t.co/E9TewE5X6g pic.twitter.com/yh95ICvrOZ— CBS News (@CBSNews) February 18, 2019

Trump said the first US military transport plane carrying humanitarian aid for Venezuelans landed in the Colombian border city of Cucuta last week.

A US military plane with humanitarian aid for Venezuela has landed in Colombia amid political crisis. (A previous tweet incorrectly stated the plane landed in Venezuela. It has been removed).

CNN’s Nick Valencia reports from the Colombia-Venezuela border https://t.co/gcmOcnDAvXpic.twitter.com/Cvjz4fPnHd— CNN (@CNN) February 16, 2019

Rodriguez said large-scale efforts to deliver humanitarian aid with military transport aircraft are being used as a test run for a possible armed intervention.

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

The U.S. Military on Peak Oil and Climate Change

The U.S. Military on Peak Oil and Climate Change

Preface. I find that of all the government branches, the military is the most realistic about the implications of Peak Oil and Climate Change.  The Department of Defense is also the largest consumer of energy in the federal government, spending about $20 billion on energy in 2011, and within the military, the air force consumes the most energy, $10 billion (84% liquid fuel, 12% electricity).  DuPont consumes as much energy as the Department of defense, so they’re not the only mega-consumer of petroleum (NRC 2013).

***

CNA. May 2009. Powering America’s Defense: Energy and the Risks to National Security. Center for Naval Analyses. 74 pages. 

[ Excerpts from this document follow ]

The destabilizing nature of increasingly scarce energy resources, the impacts of rising energy demand, and the impacts of climate change all are likely to increasingly drive military missions in this century.

GENERAL CHARLES F. “CHUCK” WALD, USAF (RET.) Former Deputy Commander, Headquarters U.S. European Command (USEUCOM); Chairman, CNA MAB

Retired Air Force General Chuck Wald wants to see major changes in how America produces and uses energy. He wants carbon emissions reduced to help stave off the destabilizing effects of climate change.

“We’ve always had to deal with unpredictable and diverse threats,” Gen. Wald said. “They’ve always been hard to judge, hard to gauge. Things that may seem innocuous become important. Things that seem small become big. Things that are far away can be felt close to home. Take the pirates off the African coast. To me, it’s surprising that pirates, today, would cause so much havoc. It’s a threat that comes out of nowhere, and it becomes a dangerous situation.

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

Cuba Warns US Moving Special Forces Closer to Venezuela Under Guise of ‘Humanitarian Intervention’

Cuba Warns US Moving Special Forces Closer to Venezuela Under Guise of ‘Humanitarian Intervention’

“It is worth recalling that similar behaviors and pretexts were used to by the U.S. during the prelude to wars it launched against Yugoslavia, Iraq, and Libya.”

Miguel Díaz-Canel & Nicolás Maduro

Cuban President Miguel Díaz-Canel visited Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro in May of 2018. (Photo: EFE/El Nuevo Diario)

As Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro urges the international community to condemn an ongoing U.S.-backed effort to overthrow him and calls for peaceful negotiations with critics led by self-declared “Interim President” Juan Guaidó, the Cuban government—which supports Maduro—claimed on Thursday that the Trump administration is moving special forces closer to Venezuela “in preparation for a military adventure under the guise of a ‘humanitarian intervention.'”

In a lengthy statement denouncing the steps President Donald Trump and his allies have taken to oust Maduro—particularly National Security Advisor John Bolton and Republican Sen. Marco Rubio (Fla.)—the Cuban government said:

Between February 6 and 10 of 2019, several military transport aircraft have flown to the Rafael Miranda Airport in Puerto Rico, the San Isidro Air Base in the Dominican Republic, and other strategically located Caribbean Islands, most certainly without the knowledge of the governments of those nations. These flights took off from U.S. military facilities where Special Operation Troops and U.S. Marine Corps units operate. These units have been used for covert operations, even against leaders of other countries.

Pointing to a draft resolution that the Trump administration recently introduced at the U.N. Security Council that expresses concern about the humanitarian conditions of Venezuela, Cuba concluded:

[T]he U.S. intends to fabricate a humanitarian pretext in order to launch a military attack on Venezuela and, by resorting to intimidation, pressure, and force, is seeking to introduce into this sovereign nation’s territory alleged humanitarian aid…

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

Shut Down the War Machine!

Shut Down the War Machine!

The time has come to cut the US military down to size.

Last November, the Pentagon admitted what critics have known for years: It cannot pass an audit that would let Congress, the media and taxpayers know what it does with the trillions of dollars that have been lavished on war and preparing for war by this country.

By all accounts, the US accounts for more than a third of all global military spending. The next biggest spender on its military, China, only spends a fifth as much as the US. And remember, as a full-fledged police state and a country whose peripheral provinces have to be kept under tight military control lest they move towards independence from Beijing, much of China’s huge military is actually involved not in threatening other countries or even defending China, but in maintaining government control domestically. Russia’s military spending, which actually declined last year, is actually lower than for tiny Saudi Arabia, which can’t even control tiny neighboring Yemen without vast assistance and military aid from the United States.

Let’s be honest: The United States faces no significant threat from any nation in the world.

Sure I know: Russia and even China have nuclear weapons that, if launched en masse at the US could destroy this country. But everyone knows such an action would be to commit national suicide. With its vast nuclear arsenal stowed in patrolling submarines, in protected silos ready to be fired off in minutes, and in bases around the world, including some quite close to China’s and Russia’s borders, the US not only could destroy both countries many times over in response, but is actually able and prepared to attack either country or both countries first, perhaps even preventing them from retaliating successfully (See Michio Kaku’s and Daniel Axelrod’s excellent and terrifying book…

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

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The Secret Logistics of America’s Global Deep State

The Secret Logistics of America’s Global Deep State

The Secret Logistics of America’s Global Deep State

Why is America’s Baghdad Embassy the world’s largest embassy — and the largest by far?

“It’s as if the US Embassy is there not only to protect American interests, but to manage the entire world from the heart of the capital, Baghdad.”

— Iraqi Sheikh Qassim Al Ta’ee, as quoted on 27 December 2011 in Al Iraq News and translated by Ibrahim Zaidan from the original Arabic by Nicholas Dagher

Zaidan’s article went on to say:

The world’s largest embassy is situated in the Green Zone and fortified by three walls, another barrier of concrete slabs, followed by barbed wire fences and a wall of sandbags. It covers an area of 104 acres, six times larger than UN headquarters in New York and ten times larger than the new embassy Washington is building in Beijing – which is just 10 acres.

[Editor’s’ Note: The ten-acre US Embassy in Beijing is the second largest overseas construction project in the history of the Department of State — and the 104-acre US Embassy in Iraq is the largest.]

So, America’s largest diplomatic mission is surrounded by high concrete walls, is painted in black, brown and grey and is completely isolated from its environment. … The United States announced several months ago that between diplomats and employees, its embassy would include 16,000 people after the pullout of US forces.

On January 1st, Will Sillitoe headlined at the Helsinki Times, “What does the US embassy in Baghdad export to Finland and dozens of other countries?” and he reported that:

More than a million kilograms of cargo were shipped from Baghdad to different parts of the world, reveals US embassies procurement documents.

Mysterious cargo shipments from the US Embassy in Baghdad to other American embassies and consulates around the world have been revealed on a Wikileaks’ database. Procurement orders of US embassies are public documents, but Wikileaks put them in a searchable database making it easier to analyse.

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

How the US Spent Billions to Change the Outcome of Elections Around the World: A Review

How the US Spent Billions to Change the Outcome of Elections Around the World: A Review

How the US Spent Billions to Change the Outcome of Elections Around the World: A Review
How the US Spent Billions to Change the Outcome of Elections Around the World: A Review

The U.S. military state overthrows democratically-elected governments that it deems to be a threat to corporate interests.

“There is plenty of evidence that the United States is the most depraved and dangerous “meddler” in the affairs of other nations that history has ever known.”

Dan Kovalik is a labor and human rights lawyer, but most of all he is an anti-imperialist and an author of three books. Kovalik’s first two books tackled the specific US war drives against Russia and Iran. His third installment, The Plot to Control the World: How the US Spent Billions to Change the Outcome of Elections Around the World, addresses the broad scope of US election meddling abroad. The book provides much needed political and ideological life support to an anti-war movement in the U.S that has been rendered nearly invisible to the naked eye.

The Plot to Control the World is as detailed in its critique of U.S. imperialism as it is concise. In just over 160 pages, Kovalik manages to analyze the various ways that the U.S. political and military apparatus interferes in the affairs of nations abroad to achieve global hegemony. He wastes no time in exposing the devastating lie that is American exceptionalism, beginning appropriately with the U.S. imperialist occupations of Haiti and the Philippines at the end of the 19thcentury and beginning of the 20th. The U.S. would murder millions of Filipinos and send both nations into a spiral of violence, instability, and poverty that continues to this day.

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

Olduvai IV: Courage
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Olduvai II: Exodus
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