WAR/DRAFT/VETERAN AFFAIRS | WHAT REALLY HAPPENED


WAR/DRAFT/VETERAN AFFAIRS

Jul 08 10:21

U.S. plans to test THAAD missile defenses as North Korea tensions mount

The United States plans to carry out a new test of its THAAD missile defense system against an intermediate-range ballistic missile in the coming days, two U.S. officials told Reuters on Friday, as tensions with North Korea climb.

Despite being planned months ago, the U.S. missile defense test will gain significance in the wake of North Korea's launch of an intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) on July 4 that has heightened concerns about the threat from Pyongyang.

The test will be the first of the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) to defend against a simulated attack by an intermediate-range ballistic missile (IRBM), one of the officials said. The THAAD interceptors will be fired from Alaska.

Jul 08 10:02

US Plans New THAAD Missile Defense Test Amid North Korea Tensions

Following the successful North Korean ICBM test earlier in the week, the US has announced its intention to carry out a new test of their THAAD missile defense system, an attempt to shoot down an IRBM simulating an attack around the THAADs in Alaska.

The US is eager to make a show of being able to intercept North Korean missiles, but such tests are risky, as the missile defense systems are in practice pretty unreliable, and even in the optimum conditions provided by the tests, often fail, which would be a particularly public embarrassment.

The US has a number of THAADs deployed in Alaska, and two set up in South Korea. North Korea’s ICBM has a theoretical range to Alaska, based on estimates from the test. The Pentagon has repeatedly played up their ability to shoot down an attacking North Korean missile.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Defense Secretary Mattis, a word, please; nothing would be more completely embarrassing right now to the US than a failed THAAD test; until this equipment becomes more robust and reliable, I would politely suggest that you may want to hold off on ordering such a test for awhile.

Jul 08 09:54

Tillerson: Not Many North Korea Options If Pressure Fails

In comments that appeared to contradict yesterday’s by Defense Secretary James Mattis, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson warned that the US has few “good options” remaining with respect to North Korea if repeated threats and sanctions don’t work.

That’s because President Trump and other top officials have repeatedly insisted that diplomacy is a “failed” option of past administrations, and despite talking up their “many options,” these appear to all begin and end with some sort of military attack, starting a huge war.

Tillerson’s comments provide additional insight into the US “strategy,” such as it is, revealing that they expect that carefully timed and escalated threats and sanctions will at some point lead to North Korea just unilaterally giving up everything they want.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

What global leaders, particularly Russia, China, South Korea and Japan need to do, is to get Kim Jung Un to the negotiating table and offer him something tangible, like a peace treaty to replace the existing armistice, with iron clad guarantees for trade, and the lifting of sanctions in return for North Korea giving up its nuclear weapons program.

Of course, that... would be logical.

Jul 08 09:48

Pentagon Falsely Claims Only 603 Civilians Killed in ISIS War Airstrikes

The Pentagon’s latest massive undercount of the civilian death toll in coalition airstrikes against Iraq and Syria has shown a significant spike in the death toll, putting the latest official count at 603 civilians between the start of the air war and the end of May.

The figure is rising a lot faster than it used to, growing by scores months now instead of by single digit numbers, reflective of the general trend of soaring death tolls as US strikes concentrate on densely populated civilian targets.

They’re still wrong, however, and wrong in a big way. The official 603 killed is less than one seventh the figure by the Air Wars NGO, which put the civilian deaths through the same period at 4,354. This is because incidents with hundreds killed are often revised downward by the Pentagon to just a handful, and smaller incidents, where only a dozen or so are killed, tend to be ignored altogether.

Jul 08 09:44

White House Caps Increase of US Troops to Afghanistan

Since President Trump handed off the decision on the Afghan War’s escalation to Defense Secretary James Marris, we’ve heard several wildly different figures from different sources, with some reports suggesting that an escalation of 3,000 to 5,000 was too small, and that Mattis might ultimately go much, much bigger.

In reality, however, officials now say that Mattis’ autonomy on the matter has its limits, and those limits are 3,900 more US ground troops. A classified memo is said to be in place which would oblige Mattis to get White House authorization if his escalation is to be any larger than that.

The Pentagon has declined to comment on the matter, noting the memo is classified, but some administration officials are said to have been surprise that any restrictions at all were placed on Mattis for deciding on troop levels in Afghanistan.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

One of the classic definitions of insanity is doing precisely the same thing, in exactly the same manner, yet expecting a different outcome; this is what is happening in the US/NATO occupation of Afghanistan.

There is utterly zero military metric by which the occupation, now in its 16th year, can be judged "a success". We have had military surges and drawdowns, but that has not affected the reality on the ground that the Taliban control even more territory than they have before.

And I have to wonder if President Trump has given Mattis "limited authority" on the troop strength in Afghanistan to be able to blame him when the coming "surge" winds up having absolutely zero effect on the situation on the ground here. Because were I a betting person, I would almost be willing to bet that the coming surge will not be enough to really make a difference.

What should the US and NATO do in Afghanistan, then?!? Were I President Trump and the NATO Commander-General Stoltenberg, I would have troops exit Afghanistan as quickly as safely possible, then negotiate with whatever government was left in Kabul for the pipeline and mineral rights.

After all, it was the cost of the pipeline rights which caused President Bush to have the US military invade Afghanistan in the first place.

Why did the US go to war in Afghanistan?!?

Jul 08 09:06

RUSSIA SAYS ISIS PLANNING TO GAS SYRIAN CIVILIANS, FRAME ASSAD, TO JUSTIFY US INVASION

Moscow, Russia – On Thursday, during a weekly press briefing by the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, spokeswoman Maria Zakharova explained that their intelligence has revealed active terrorist plots to stage chemical attacks in Syria in order to justify and precipitate U.S. strikes and increased intervention in the Syrian civil war.

The information exposes ongoing plans by Syrian terrorist groups to stage chemical weapons attacks, to be blamed on the Assad government, in an effort to justify U.S. attacks against Syrian government forces.

“According to information available [to us], Syrian terrorist groups plan staged provocative actions with the use of chemical poison gases to justify US strikes against the positions of the Syrian government forces,” Zakharova said at a weekly press briefing.

The intelligence reveals that ISIS has deployed laboratories and equipment for manufacturing chemical weapons from its capital of Raqqa to Deir ez-Zor, according to Zakharova.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

This... was before Russia's President Putin and the US's President Trump met for two hours yesterday. I think the current situation in Syria - and elsewhere - will be a great deal more calm because of this meeting.

Jul 08 08:57

Two Years Before 9/11, Candidate Bush was Already Talking Privately About Attacking Iraq, According to His Former Ghost Writer

“He was thinking about invading Iraq in 1999,” said author and journalist Mickey Herskowitz. “It was on his mind. He said to me: ‘One of the keys to being seen as a great leader is to be seen as a commander-in-chief.’ And he said, ‘My father had all this political capital built up when he drove the Iraqis out of Kuwait and he wasted it.’ He said, ‘If I have a chance to invade…if I had that much capital, I’m not going to waste it.

Jul 08 04:13

One Step Closer to WW3: US And Turkey's 60+ Year Alliance Coming To An End

Relations between the United States and Turkey have reached a critical crossroad for the first time since World War Two. These two nations cutting ties comes at a time when many nations are rapidly militarizing and ready to make significant moves on the world stage. If the US – Turkey alliance is officially severed, it would make another country in a long list of countries that are now acting against US authority.

Jul 07 15:54

Lavrov gives Moscow's version of Trump-Putin talks

These guys can't even agree to what they said or agreed to.

While Secretary of State Rex Tillerson emerged from the sit-down between President Trump and Vladimir Putin claiming the U.S. president confronted the Russian leader on election meddling, it didn't take long for Tillerson's counterpart to provide Moscow's version of events.

Russia’s Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov told reporters on Friday that Trump had actually “accepted” Putin’s assurances that Moscow was not behind the meddling in the 2016 presidential election.

Trump administration officials quickly pushed back, telling reporters at the G-20 summit in Germany that Lavrov's account was not accurate.

Jul 07 14:17

Pentagon Reaffirms ‘Strategic Security Partnership’ & Mutual Interests With ‘Terrorist Funder’ Qatar

Washington still sees Qatar as a reliable and strategic partner in the US-led anti-Islamic State coalition, despite the ongoing blockade of the Gulf state by four Arab countries which have promised to intensify its sanctions regime over Doha’s alleged support of terrorism.

US Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis discussed the “deepening” of the “strategic security partnership” between Washington and Doha with Qatari Minister of State for Defense Affairs Dr. Khalid al-Attiyah, the Pentagon announced.

Jul 07 13:54

Tony Blair Failed To ‘Be Straight’ With The Public About Iraq Invasion – Chilcot

Former Prime Minister Tony Blair failed to “be straight” with the public about his decision to join the US-led invasion of Iraq in 2003, Sir John Chilcot said, exactly one year since he published his damning report into Britain’s role in the conflict.

Speaking publicly for the first time since the 12-volume report was published, Chilcot said Blair’s testimony to the inquiry was “emotionally truthful,” but the Labour leader had failed to act on the basis of facts.

Jul 07 10:43

New Army Training Tells Female Soldiers To ‘Accept’ Naked Men In Their Showers

I recently received a copy of the new “Tier Three Transgender Training” materials—a PowerPoint and accompanying lesson plan excerpted below, with full documents at these links—that the Army is now using in mandatory training for all soldiers. The active-duty officer who sent the materials completed the training with 40 other soldiers last week instead of conducting their morning physical training as usual.

Jul 07 10:26

US & Russia agree ceasefire in southwest Syria - Lavrov

This source I trust. US unnamed officials.....NO!

The US and Russia have agreed on a ceasefire in southwest Syria, set to take effect on July 9 at noon Damascus time, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov has announced.

Jul 07 10:12

Donate to Yousef in Palestine

Hello, My name is Yousef Al Qarra, I’m a 17 year old Palestinian living in Gaza. I recently graduated from high school. I created this fundraising campaign to raise Pakcoin donations for food for my family. We are a family of nine people; including my mother, father, two sisters, four brothers and myself.

The economic situation in Gaza is very bad. My father suffers from chronic back pain from a work injury he had a few years ago. As for my brothers and me it’s extremely difficult for us to find work here and the ongoing economic blockade by the Israelis makes surviving here even worse...

Jul 07 10:04

Moral Injury Of War: The Invisible Wound Of Empire

With the failure of the Democratic establishment, the crisis of liberal democracy is now seized by a new rise of power. The US empire with Trump as commander-in-chief has renewed its vow toward colonial domination. With nationalism and militarism in full swing, Trump’s America aims to radically alter the future of this country. His campaign slogan “make America great again” was a kind of historical revisionism, ignoring the deep oppression and inequality that runs beneath this nation’s history.

Jul 06 16:33

Moral Injury Of War: The Invisible Wound Of Empire

With the failure of the Democratic establishment, the crisis of liberal democracy is now seized by a new rise of power. The US empire with Trump as commander-in-chief has renewed its vow toward colonial domination. With nationalism and militarism in full swing, Trump’s America aims to radically alter the future of this country.

Jul 06 14:36

Will Tony Blair Be Prosecuted

Tony Blair must be prosecuted over the “unnecessary” and “unlawful” Iraq War, a court has heard.

General Abdul Wahed Shannan Al Rabbat alleges Mr Blair, then UK prime minister, committed “the crime of aggression” by invading Iraq in 2003.

Jul 06 13:42

Did John Wayne die of cancer caused by a radioactive movie set?

I'm horrified to have to report this, John, but your girlfriend's claim is only slightly exaggerated. Of the 220 persons who worked on The Conqueror on location in Utah in 1955, 91 had contracted cancer as of the early 1980s and 46 died of it, including stars John Wayne, Susan Hayward, and Agnes Moorehead, and director Dick Powell. Experts say under ordinary circumstances only 30 people out of a group of that size should have gotten cancer. The cause? No one can say for sure, but many attribute the cancers to radioactive fallout from U.S. atom bomb tests in nearby Nevada. The whole ghastly story is told in The Hollywood Hall of Shame by Harry and Michael Medved. But let's start at the beginning.

Jul 06 09:28

The Twilight Of Unipolar American Power

In 1962 the former US Secretary of State Dean Acheson quipped that: "Britain had lost an Empire and yet to find a role". Well, perhaps the same can now tentatively be said of the United States in these early, but profoundly debilitating days, of the Trump administration and its chaotic, incoherent foreign policy. The Trump administration's approach to traditional American allies in Europe, the Middle East and Asia has been belligerent, nonsensical and highly neurotic. American foreign policy is a complete mess and the only people and country this is inflicting real damage on is the United States.

Jul 06 08:50

The Mindless Hawkish Response to North Korea’s Missile Test

The WSJ editors assert that “three U.S. administrations have tried diplomacy and failed,” but that misrepresents the consistency of the U.S. effort and it misleads their audience about how things have turned out this way. Diplomacy with North Korea did have some success in limiting their nuclear program over twenty years ago, but the Bush administration’s attempt to force even bigger concessions through increased pressure backfired spectacularly and led to North Korea’s withdrawal from the NPT and their first nuclear weapons test. Since then, the U.S. has been trying to contain the fallout from that bit of short-sighted hard-line posturing. Pursuing an even more aggressive policy now isn’t going to succeed, and it might very well plunge the Koreas and the U.S. into a major war that would be a disaster for all involved.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

The only reasonable thing here is negotiation; but the US must present something to negotiate with.

I have long suggested a real peace deal for North Korea, replacing the armistice, where free trade, and the lifting of sanctions would be honored in exchange for North Korea giving up its nuclear weapons program.

Of course, that...would be logical.

And unfortunately, the US government's relationship with logic, in its foreign policy of the last 20 - odd years has not been that intense.

Jul 06 08:42

Even a US ‘Surgical Strike’ Against North Korea Could Lead to Full-Scale War

Even administration officials readily admit that a full-scale war with North Korea is “a war we don’t want.” After almost 70 years of armistice, North Korea has retaliatory capabilities that would devastate South Korea, killing millions, and the large US military contingent in South Korea would be sitting ducks.

At the same time, the Trump Administration is eager to play up their readiness for war, and belief that they have myriad military options, which is raising concerns about the possibility of a limited engagement, or some sort of surgical strike.

Experts, however, seem virtually unanimous in their opinion that a limited military exchange wouldn’t be limited for long, with North Korean retaliation likely in the case of any attack, with the situation progressively escalating into the full-scale war.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

The only good option, even though it might be limited in scope, is that of negotiation, in order to ratchet tensions down; unfortunately, President Trump does not really understand how to do this here, so what we are seeing is bluster and threat, which can, potentially have some very real, and negative, consequences.

All it will take to get a regional war going, is a stupid miscalculation, or mis-reading of information on either side, and we are off and running, potentially toward a nuclear war.

Jul 06 07:56

SYRIAN KURDS EXPECT WAR WITH TURKEY ‘WITHIN DAYS’

Citing a continued military buildup along their frontier in northern Syria, the Kurdish YPG’s leadership says they believe an attack by Turkey, leading to open warfare, is imminent, and will likely begin “within days.”

Turkey and the YPG are hostile toward one another, with Turkey repeatedly declaring the Kurds “terrorists,” and attacking Kurdish targets in Afrin District. YPG commanders have openly talked about invading Turkish-held parts of Syria and “liberating” them into the Kurdish autonomous region of Rojave.

Turkish Deputy PM Numaan Kurtulmus denied that Turkey was “declaring war” against the YPG, but did insist that they are “making preparations” to protect Turkish independence from the “threat” posed by the continued existence of the YPG on their border.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

The main flaw in US war planning here, was the "illusion" that the US could, in any way, control the Kurd's desire for a real homeland, carving up bits of Syria to obtain it, and that Turkey would allow that to happen.

Unfortunately, this is followed up by a very troubling article out of blacklistednews.com:

Turkey warns it is ready for a Military Intervention in Syria

Jul 06 07:55

Trump backs NATO defense pact, criticizes Russia

U.S. President Donald Trump affirmed America’s commitment to NATO’s mutual defense pact on a visit to Poland on Wednesday and called on Russia to end “destabilizing activities” and “support for hostile regimes.”

“The United States has demonstrated not merely with words but with its actions that we stand firmly behind Article 5, the mutual defense commitment,” Trump said in a speech in Warsaw, near a monument to the 1944 Warsaw Uprising, when Poles fought for two months against overwhelming German forces during World War II.

On his last trip to Europe, in May, Trump did not state his commitment to the mutual defense clause, causing disquiet among U.S. allies — particularly as the president was highly critical of NATO during his election campaign.

Trump later said in Washington that the U.S. stood by the clause, which states that an attack on one NATO member is considered an attack on all of them. But his remarks in Warsaw were the first time he had done so on European soil.

Jul 06 07:34

Fox Host Says Kim Jong-Un Needs To Be Killed Or Overthrown

Jesse Watters, co-host of the Fox News show “The Five,” believes America’s options for North Korea are dwindling, suggesting an assassination of dictator Kim Jong-un or an overthrow of the government.

Jul 06 07:25

Tony Blair 'not straight' with UK over Iraq, says Chilcot

Tony Blair was not "straight with the nation" about his decisions in the run up to the Iraq War, the chairman of the inquiry into the war has told the BBC.

Speaking for the first time since publishing his report a year ago, Sir John Chilcot discussed why he thinks the former PM made those decisions.

He said the evidence Mr Blair gave the inquiry was "emotionally truthful" but he relied on beliefs rather than facts.

A spokesman for Mr Blair said "all these issues" had been dealt with.

Jul 06 06:23

SAS SOLDIERS 'SUSPECTED' OF EXECUTING UNARMED AFGHANS AND COVERING UP POTENTIAL WAR CRIMES

Special forces soldiers allegedly murdered civilians and planted guns on their bodies

Jul 05 15:35

US warns China on trade with NKorea if it wants US trade

U.S. Ambassador Nikki Haley warned China on Wednesday that it risks its massive trade with the United States if its business with North Korea violates U.N. sanctions.

In a hard-hitting speech at an emergency meeting of the U.N. Security Council following Pyongyang's successful launch of an intercontinental ballistic missile, she said that "the world has become a more dangerous place" and China has a key role in promoting peace and "preventing a catastrophe."
Haley said the United States doesn't seek conflict — "in fact we seek to avoid it." But she said the launch of an ICBM "is a clear and sharp military escalation" and the U.S. is prepared to use its "considerable military forces" to defend itself and its allies "if we must."

"But we prefer not to go in that direction," she said. "We have other methods of addressing those who threaten us, and of addressing those who supply the threats. We have great capabilities in the area of trade."

Webmaster's Commentary: 

And if the US doesn't get the response to the new Security Council Resolution they want...then what?!?

Are we looking at a unilateral decap strike, just coming from the US military, or will they be looking at including troops from South Korea and Japan in such an action as well?!?

I have to tell you; so far, this week has been an utter ARMPIT for peace and social justice!!

Jul 05 15:23

Soldier Charged in Free-Fall Annihilation of US Army Humvees

A US Army sergeant has been charged for his involvement in the remarkable destruction of three combat vehicles that plunged to Earth last year during a parachute drop in Germany, a service spokesperson said on Tuesday.

Jul 05 14:52

Haley: US Will Use Military In North Korea "If It Must"

The war drums are beating louder, and as US Ambassador to the UN Nicky Haley said moments ago as she speaks live (webcast), the North Korea launch is clear, sharp military escalation and the US will use the full range of its capabilities in North Korea including military force, "if it must." Her key soundbites from Reuters and Bloomberg:

HALEY: PREPARED TO USE THE FULL RANGE OF ITS CAPABILITIES TO DETER NORTH KOREA, INCLUDING MILITARY FORCE "IF WE MUST"

HALEY: U.S. WON'T HAVE PATIENCE FOR WATERED DOWN UN RESOLUTION

She also said that an escalated response needed in wake of ICBM launch, and sent a clear warning to China over supporting N. Korea whose launch shows North Korea "does not want to be part of a peaceful world":

HALEY SAYS COUNTRIES ALLOWING TRADE WITH NORTH KOREA IN VIOLATION OF U.N. SANCTIONS WILL NOT BE ALLOWED TO CONTINUE TRADE WITH U.S.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

This is getting about as serious as is a heart attack, and escalating rapidly.

IF the US uses force, outside the limits of whatever Security Council Resolution is created, stemming from this emergency meeting, we are potentially looking at war with China, and this would be horrific indeed.

President Trump and his advisors could step down the rhetoric, by offering a little bit with which to negotiate with North Korea, perhaps by not having as many joint drills with the South Korean military, or eliminating them completely.

But President Trump and Rex Tillerson will not agree to this.

What could be offered to North Korea would be getting South Korea, North Korea, the US, and China to the negotiating table to agree to a complete peace deal, normalizing trade, and dropping financial sanctions, with which to replace the armistice, with the quid pro quo being that North Korea stops its nuclear weapons development program, with inspections to verify compliance, as is happening with Iran.

Unfortunately, this... would be logical. I don't know what Ambassador Haley's rhetoric is signaling, but it does not appear to me to be a peaceful, rational way of dealing with the issue of North Korea's weapons development program.

Jul 05 14:32

What Does War Generate?

At an April, 2017 Symposium on Peace in Nashville, TN, Martha Hennessy spoke about central tenets of Maryhouse, a home of hospitality in New York City, where Martha often lives and works. Every day, the community there tries to abide by the counsels of Dorothy Day, Martha’s grandmother, who co-founded houses of hospitality and a vibrant movement in the 1930s.

Jul 05 13:21

Scott Adams: Solving the North Korea Situation

I have some spare time this morning so I thought I would solve the North Korean nuclear threat problem.

The current frame on how all sides are approaching the problem is a win-lose setup. Either North Korea wins – and develops nukes that can reach the mainland USA – or the United States wins, and North Korea abandons its nuclear plans, loses face, loses leverage, and loses security. Our current framing of the situation doesn’t have a path to success.

So how do you fix that situation?

Jul 05 09:33

Trump: Toward War in the Middle East

Now comes President Donald Trump. His policies for the Middle East are similar to those of the previous two administrations but on steroids. Trump has already escalated the wars in Afghanistan, Iraq, Syria, and Yemen. When Trump sends his son-in-law, Jared Kushner, to solve the seventy-year-old Palestinian-Israeli conflict, Israeli President Benjamin Netanyahu cannot hide his happiness with the appointment. The Democrats and the media are too busy with election results, hacking, and the Russian probe to pay much attention to Middle East policy, with one exception – Israel.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

However, this time, unlike the situation in Iraq, there is a 6,000 lb gorilla, snoozing on the Bosendorfer, regarding further American military misadventures in the Middle East; it goes by the name of Russia, and will, should Iran be attacked, to Iran's aid militarily.

IF, in fact, the US goes to war against Iran, to appease its Israeli handlers, look for the reinstitution of a draft, for both men and women; an horrific decline in the US economy; and the possibility that the US military may well not be able to emerge victorious from the conflict.

Jul 05 09:20

Mass Execution of Turkmen; 230 Killed in Iraq

On Tuesday, Iraqi Maj. Faris Aboud reported that a single field hospital servicing the Old City neighborhood in Mosul received 300 wounded during just one day recently. And, many of these wounded were newly orphaned children, who had lost entire families. However, the United Nations figures for the whole of Nineveh province, where Mosul is located, were 289 killed and 93 wounded during June. The large contrast between these figures highlights the problematic nature of quantifying the dead and injured in this conflict.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

This attempt at redrawing the map of the Middle East will only cause more chaos than already exists, if that is at all possible.

That Simpering Chimp, AKA, George Bush, should be cooling his heels in prison, facing a war crimes tribunal in the Hague, for the evil he has done to Iraq, and beyond.

Jul 05 08:56

Pentagon vows to protect US & allies after Pyongyang’s ‘escalatory ICBM test’

The Pentagon has vowed to defend the US and its allies against any possible North Korean threat after Washington confirmed Pyongyang’s claim that it has developed the technology to potentially deliver a nuclear warhead to the US mainland.
The Pentagon has concluded that North Korea test-launched an intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) that can potentially strike the United States. Initially, the US military had assessed the missile fired Tuesday morning to be of an intermediate-range category.

“We remain prepared to defend ourselves and our allies and to use the full range of capabilities at our disposal against the growing threat from North Korea,” Pentagon spokeswoman Dana White said in a statement. White also condemned Pyongyang’s "escalatory launch of an intercontinental ballistic missile."

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Here is the problem: Russia and China have put forth a completely reasonable proposal Russia, China: N. Korea must freeze nuclear activities, US halt THAAD deployment, which the US government has utterly rejected out of hand.

Unless there is a little conciliation, on the part of the US government, there is zero incentive for North Korea to come to the negotiating tables, and hammer out a peace agreement, with no trade restrictions or sanctions against North Korea, in exchange for it abandoning its nuclear weapons program.

If negotiations prove impossible, according to the current administration's thinking, that leaves only one option; a military attack against North Korea, which would leave thousands of South Koreans dead and wounded, and most probably insure that China would come to the military aid of its client state, North Korea.

Jul 05 08:45

SAUDI ARABIA ‘TOP OF THE LIST’ OF FOREIGN FUNDING FOR BRITISH TERRORISTS – THINK TANK 

Britain’s major trade and security partner in the Middle East, Saudi Arabia, is the main source of funding for Islamist extremism in the UK, a damning new report by the neo-conservative Henry Jackson Society (HJS) claims.

According to the HJS, money donated to terrorist organizations operating in Britain can be traced back to the Gulf states.

It says the Saudis’ 60-year commitment to the diffusion of Wahhabism, a hardline version of Islam, has led to the funding of British mosques and institutions linked to the wave of attacks in Europe over the last few years.

“There is a clear and growing link between foreign funding of Islamist extremism and the violent terrorism we have witnessed across the UK and Europe,” said the report’s author, Tom Wilson.

“The key now is to get ahead of the issue and find out the full extent of what has been going on. A public inquiry would go some way to informing the debate.”

Webmaster's Commentary: 

And one of the biggest areas of trade between the UK and Saudi Arabia has been in weapons.

Does UK’s lucrative arms trade come at the cost of political repression?

The UK has made 10 times more in arms sales to Saudi Arabia than it's given in aid to Yemen

UK activists demand end to Saudi Arabia, UAE arms sales

As long as the money is made, the UK's government, and the UK merchants of death, do not give a rat's anus as to how, or against whom, those weapons are used. Let's look at the genocide Saudi Arabia is inflicting in Yemen, shall we?!?

Saudi campaign has killed 1,400 Yemeni kids, UNICEF says (It is now July, 2017; we can be reasonably certain that the figure is considerably higher at this point).

And the domestic cost of violence and death is simply a small price to pay, according to the UK government, courtesy of radicalised youth who suddenly act out against their neighbors, or the general population as a whole.

Jul 05 08:41

Keep Prepping Because The Government’s Plan To Survive Nuclear War Doesn’t Include You

Needless to say, the United States has changed a lot since we officially declared our independence in 1776. What used to be a nation of the people, by the people, and for the people has become a nation of the government, by the government and for the government. The centralization of the federal bureaucracy and the accumulation of governmental power has created a significant divide between the people and the political elites in Washington D.C. These political elites seem to have developed a mentality that they deserve special privileges that the rest of the American people do not, such as the ability to keep classified information on a private server and not be prosecuted and exemptions from the Affordable Care Act.

But it’s not only political privileges that government officials enjoy; it turns out that they also have a plan in place to help them survive some kind of nuclear disaster, and that plan doesn’t include you.

Jul 05 07:35

US vows it will 'never accept a nuclear North Korea' after new missile test

They already have nukes Rex. Trump,dissing China by tweet isn't going over well either.

Secretary of State Rex Tillerson vowed Tuesday that the U.S. would "never accept a nuclear-armed North Korea" while U.S. and South Korean forces held joint ballistic missile drills after the Communist nation successfully tested an intercontinental ballistic missile.

Jul 04 14:38

Understanding Moral Injury In Hooper’s War

I’m lucky enough to have a friend with a boat. Sitting at the stern, I watch the boat create its wake, then as we speed away the wake fades just as quick. Thinking about the war doesn’t work that way. About the best I can hope for in real life is to be able to put what happened in a box. The box stays closed most of the time.

Jul 04 13:05

Poland Wants Trump Vow of Ongoing Protection From Russia

Officially, Poland is seeking protection from “Russian activities” for so long as Russia has activities. In practice, the government’s push for “assurances” from President Trump center on getting a commitment to keep US and NATO troops there permanently.

That’s been a priority for Polish governments since they joined NATO, with many envisioning a financial windfall from hosting foreign troops, and openly complaining when that didn’t immediately materialize after they joined.

Poland finally got some US and NATO troops in the past year, with the establishment of a “spearhead” force pointed at the Russian frontier, nominally to respond to any “threats” Russia might make. Polish officials clearly see the risk of losing the foreign deployments if calm is restored.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

It looks to me as though the Polish government is attempting to make "financial hay" from a permanent US and NATO deployment; that is the real reason, while alleged "Russian aggression, coupled with a potential invasion, is the "good reason".

Jul 04 12:59

China Warns North Korea Tensions Could Get ‘Out of Control’

Chinese Ambassador to the UN Liu Jieyi told the UN today about growing concerns that tensions between the US and North Korea could rapidly get “out of control,” with disastrous consequences for the entire region.

North Korea has tested a missile today, a move that led to an immediate condemnation from President Trump, raising more concern that his talk of dealing with them “rapidly,” and H.R. McMaster’s talk of all the US options involving attacking North Korea, a more imminent threat.

China has been trying to get the US to the negotiating table with North Korea for some time now,and both they and South Korea have delivered proposals where North Korea would end nuclear testing in return for the US ending wargames with South Korea and reduce its military presence along North Korea’s border.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

This is about to get... officially horrible.

President Trump has doubled down on not making any concessions to either China or North Korea, to get North Korea to the negotiating table, and this was a really unfortunate response to these proposals.

And YES, thank you very much, I am more than a little nervous about living on a first-strike target for either Russia or China!!

And the following story does not make me more serene and calm, either:

Trump Warns China He Is Willing to Pressure North Korea on His Own

Jul 04 12:49

Qatar Delivers Response to Saudi Demands

Qatari Foreign Minister Mohammed bin Abdulrahman al-Thani has formally delivered the hand-written letter of response to Saudi Arabia’s list of 13 demands. The response was sent by way of Kuwait, which is trying to mediate the dispute, to Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, and Egypt.

Qatari Foreign Minister Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al Thani
Though the exact text of the response has not been made public, it’s safe to say it’s a broad rejection of both the allegations contained within the demands, and the specific demands themselves, with Qatari officials saying they believe it was intended to be rejected all alone.

The response to the response is the big question now, as the four blockading countries are expected to get together to make some sort of new formal statement related to the ongoing defiance of the Qatari emirate. If history is any judge, this will be more accusations and even more demands.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

IF the Qatari response is not to Saudi Arabia's liking, one has to wonder if things will get out of control, and if Saudi Arabia is actually planning a military strike against Qatar.

And if that happens, what are the standing orders for US commanders at Al Udeid Air Base in Qatar, which is home to over 10,000 US service members?!?

Jul 04 12:23

Over 5,000 troops and around 100 aircraft involved in drills in Russia’s WestMore:http://tass.com/defense/954501

A massive command and staff exercise in aviation and troops management has begun in Russia’s Western Military District, the District’s press service said in a statement. The military drills involve more than 5,000 troops, as well as around 100 planes and helicopters.

"The drills particularly involve aviation, air defense units, missile forces and artillery, radar troops using electronic warfare, as well as special forces deployed to the Western Military District," the press service elaborated.

During the exercise, the troops are supposed to fight off a simulated enemy’s missile strikes and airstrikes. Combined units will escape the strikes, while aviation units and radar troops will eliminate various targets simulating cruise and ballistic missiles, combat and surveillance unmanned aerial vehicles, as well as warplanes and helicopters.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

It's no accident that these military drills are taking place in the Western part of Russia.

Take a look at the following map:

Map of Russia and Surrounding Countries

Notice that you have Ukraine on Russia's Western border, which it itching for a fight after Crimea held the referendum to petition the Russian Federation to allow it to be accepted as a member in 2014.

Notice that you have Estonia, which is hosting at least 800 British Troops to "deter Russia" (whatever the heck that means)

British Troops in Estonia to "Deter Russia"

Notice that you have NATO troops deployed to Poland this year:

NATO troops deployed to Poland to "deter Russia"

Notice that NATO has recently held massive military exercises in Eastern Europe:

Eurpean Troops Open Massive Navy, Baltic Sea Exercises

Notice that even little old Finland has upped its troop strength in response to "alleged Russian aggression."

Finland to ramp up troop levels amid heightened Russian tensions

Were I Russia's President Putin, looking at all of these elements, taken together, would I be having intense military drills in the western portion of my country?!?

You bet your sweet bippy, I would!!

Jul 04 11:51

Russia details agenda for Putin's meeting with Trump

Russian President Vladimir Putin will demand the return of two diplomatic compounds seized by the United States when he meets in Germany this week with President Trump for the first time, the Kremlin said, as a senior Russian official warned that Moscow’s patience on the issue was running out.

Putin’s foreign affairs adviser Yuri Ushakov said his government showed “unusual flexibility” by not retaliating in December when then-President Obama confiscated the two compounds, in New York state and Maryland, and expelled 35 Russian diplomats as punishment for Moscow’s alleged meddling in the 2016 U.S. presidential election.

Ushakov urged Washington to “free Russia from the need to take retaliatory moves,” according to The Associated Press.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

I hope that these meetings are substantive in nature, and will help to ratchet international tensions down on issues like the US illegal intervention in Syria; removing sanctions against Russia for something it absolutely DID NOT DO (read; the alleged "annexation" of Crimea, which never happened) and the NATO encirclement of Russia.

Jul 04 11:45

US AIR FORCE REPORTEDLY DEPLOYS JASSM MISSILES TO KUNSAN AB

It looks like the US Air Force has added a new tool to their toolbox of weapons to deal with any North Korean contingency:

The U.S. military has deployed to South Korea state-of-the-art missiles equipped with precision strike capability for a possible North Korea contingency.

Multiple diplomatic sources said on Monday that to their knowledge, U.S. Forces Korea(USFK) recently put in place around ten Joint Air-to-Surface Standoff Missiles(JASSM) at its air base in Gunsan, North Jeolla Province.
It is also known that the missiles can be mounted on F-16 fighter jets deployed to South Korea on a regular and rotational basis.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

This is escalating very quickly.

I am hoping and praying that China's President Xi Jinping and President Trump have a moment to talk about the rapidly evolving North Korean military capabilities, and come up with a plan that doesn't involve a war, or decap strike here.

My suggestion would be for there to be a conference including China; South Korea; North Korea; and the US, where a full peace treaty would be offered to North Korea with which to replace the existing armistice, in return for North Korea dropping its weapons development program.

Of course, that... would be logical.

Jul 04 11:24

The Economic Motive For America’s Current Wars

Russia has long been the chief seller of energy — mainly gas and oil — in the world’s largest energy-market: the EU, or Europe. This means that U.S.-based energy companies, such as Exxon and Halliburton, aren’t the ones who dominate in supplying oil, gas, pipelines, and other energy-supplying needs, to the consumers and businesses in the world’s largest energy-market: Europe.

Jul 04 10:57

CONGRESS WILL MAKE SURE TAXPAYERS KEEP SENDING MONEY TO TERRORISTS

One of the few elected Democratic lawmakers with an extensive anti-war record, Rep. Tulsi Gabbard (D-Hawaii), has combined forces with Sen. Rand Paul (R-Kentucky) to push legislation through both the House and the Senate that would bar federal agencies from using taxpayer-backed funds to provide weapons, training, intelligence, or any other type of support to terrorist cells such as al-Qaeda, ISIS, or any other group that is associated with them in any way.

The Stop Arming Terrorists Act is so unique that it’s also the only bill of its kind that would also bar the government from funneling money and weapons through other countries that support (directly or indirectly) terrorists such as Saudi Arabia.

To our surprise — or should we say shame? — only 13 other lawmakers out of hundreds have co-sponsored Gabbard’s House bill. Paul’s Senate version of the bill, on the other hand, has zero co-sponsors.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

This, folks, is the reason that the Unhinged Surveilled State of America is in a state of perpetual warfare around the world.

And this...is precisely to what Karl Marx alluded, when he made the observation that all wars are economic in nature.

Jul 04 10:25

CONGRESS WILL MAKE SURE TAXPAYERS KEEP SENDING MONEY TO TERRORISTS

One of the few elected Democratic lawmakers with an extensive anti-war record, Rep. Tulsi Gabbard (D-Hawaii), has combined forces with Sen. Rand Paul (R-Kentucky) to push legislation through both the House and the Senate that would bar federal agencies from using taxpayer-backed funds to provide weapons, training, intelligence, or any other type of support to terrorist cells such as al-Qaeda, ISIS, or any other group that is associated with them in any way.

The Stop Arming Terrorists Act is so unique that it’s also the only bill of its kind that would also bar the government from funneling money and weapons through other countries that support (directly or indirectly) terrorists such as Saudi Arabia.

To our surprise — or should we say shame? — only 13 other lawmakers out of hundreds have co-sponsored Gabbard’s House bill. Paul’s Senate version of the bill, on the other hand, has zero co-sponsors.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

This is the essence of what keeps the Unhinged, Surveilled States of America in a state of perpetual war; no matter who it kills or maims for life, war is good for business, and that... is the only thing that seems to matter, in American culture.

This is living proof of the reality to which Karl Marx spoke, when he made the observation that all wars are economic in origin.

Jul 04 09:40

PYONGYANG FIRES MEDIUM-RANGE BALLISTIC MISSILE FROM REGION BORDERING CHINA INTO SEA OF JAPAN

North Korea successfully launched its first intercontinental ballistic missile on Tuesday morning, the country’s state television reported. The Hwasong-14 ICBM flew some 933 kilometers in 39 minutes reaching an altitude of 2,802 kilometers.

The ICBM is capable of reaching any target in the world, North Korean state TV said, as cited by Reuters. The test was reportedly carried out under the supervision of North Korea’s leader, Kim Jong Un.

“The test launch was conducted at the sharpest angle possible and did not have any negative effect on neighboring countries,” North Korean state media said, as cited by Reuters.

South Korea’s Joint Chiefs of Staff said earlier that Pyongyang had conducted another ballistic missile test on Tuesday morning. The projectile, described by the South as an “unidentified ballistic missile,” was launched towards the Sea of Japan.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Kim Jung Un may well not know a bloody thing about ballistic missiles; but he is no slouch on timing, as this event was timed to happen right before the G 20 meeting in Hamburg.

The intelligent response would be for China, South Korea, Japan, and the US show a united front, and negotiate a legitimate peace treaty with North Korea to replace the armistice, guaranteeing trade, and lifting any and all sanctions, in return for Kim Jung Un's stopping his nuclear missile program.

But of course, that...would be logical.
And I have rather given up on the Unhinged Surveilled States of America doing anything that even begins to smack of logic for We the People in the 21st century.

So look for some genuine American Deep State stupidity to prevail unilaterally, manifested perhaps as some kind of horrific bombing, or a decap strike on Pyongyang.

Jul 04 09:27

THE PRICE OF AMERICA’S ENDLESS WARS

Official Washington likes to think of its wars as “humanitarian,” supposedly bringing “democracy” to faraway lands, but the wars really bring death, destruction and despair, says peace activist Kathy Kelly.

She read to us. “The Works of Mercy: Feed the hungry; Give drink to the thirsty; Clothe the naked; Visit the imprisoned; Care for the sick; Bury the dead.” And then she read: “The Works of War: Destroy crops and land; Seize food supplies; Destroy homes; Scatter families; Contaminate water; Imprison dissenters; Inflict wounds, burns; Kill the living.”

The following week, General James Mattis was asked to estimate the death toll from the U.S. first use in Nangarhar province, Afghanistan, of the MOAB, or Massive Ordinance Air Burst bomb, the largest non-nuclear weapon in U.S. arsenals.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

As a Christian pacifist activist, I despair that the only way the US government appears to be ready to resolve its geopolitical differences only through wars, rather than though good faith, hard-won negotiations.

Jul 04 09:09

AS AMERICANS CELEBRATE INDEPENDENCE, US BOMBS YET ANOTHER SOVEREIGN NATION

In the midst of festivities leading into Independence Day, the U.S. opportuned the distraction to bomb yet another sovereign nation in the name of fighting terrorism, launching airstrikes against al-Shabaab militants rebelling against the U.N.-backed Somali government headed by U.S. citizen, President Mohamed Abdullahi “Farmajo” Mohamed.

These strikes on Sunday follow the granting of expanded powers to U.S. Africa Command (AFRICOM) by President Trump earlier this year, and seems to be the second of its kind.

“We are currently assessing the results of the operation, and will provide additional information as appropriate,” AFRICOM spokesman Chuck Prichard asserted Monday.

Following the airstrikes, AFRICOM spokesman Patrick Barnes also noted, “U.S. forces remain committed to supporting the federal government of Somalia, the Somali National Army and our AMISOM partners in defeating al-Shabab and establishing a safe and secure environment in Somalia.”

Webmaster's Commentary: 

In the 21st century, it appears that the Unhinged, Surveilled States of America know of no other way to resolve their geopolitical differences other that war, and that...is profoundly unfortunate for the future of the entire world.

Jul 03 14:40

Media isn't reporting truth about ‘war on terror’ deaths

 

At the end of May, the Washington D.C.-based Physicians for Social Responsibility (PSR) released a study concluding that the death toll from the American-led “War on Terror” could be as high as two million just since the years following the 9/11 attacks.

Jul 03 13:02

Rockets’ Red Glare And Bombs Bursting In Air

A June 27 Pew Research Center poll says world opinion of the United States has plummeted since Donald Trump took office. Surveying people in 37 countries, 49 percent held a positive view of the United States, down from 65 percent at the end of 2016. Maybe we could cancel the fireworks this 4th of July considering the insensitive symbolism of vicariously enjoying war.

Jul 03 11:07

Russia calls Britain’s new aircraft carrier ‘convenient target’

The Russians could also have pointed out that the F-35 strike fighters the new carrier will deploy are a load of rubbish and beset with so many problems they are years behind schedule and the programme billions over budget.

It also remains to be seen whether the aircraft carrier is an obsolete sitting duck or not, in the new naval environment where hypersonic artificially intelligent cruise missiles are being introduced.

Jul 03 10:46

Inside Trump’s Disastrous ‘Secret’ Drug War Plans for Central America

At closed-door meetings in Miami, Trump and his generals plotted a muscular military response to violence in Central America. Been there. Done that. It’s a disaster.

Jul 03 10:44

Washington’s New Threat Against Syria, Russia and Iran: Invitation to False Flag Operation

On Monday 26th June, the White House released a statement saying that the United States had “identified potential preparations for another chemical attack by the Assad regime…” It went on to say: “If, however, Mr. Assad conducts another mass murder attack using chemical weapons, he and his military will pay a heavy price.”

Nikki Haley, the US ambassador to the United Nations, followed that statement by tweeting,

“Any further attacks done to the people of Syria will be blamed on Assad, but also on Russia & Iran who support him killing his own people.”

On Tuesday morning, speaking on BBC 4 Today programme, the British Defence Minister Sir Michael Fallon was asked how Britain would respond to another American attack on Syria, and he responded “we will support” future US action in response to the use of chemical weapons in Syria.

Jul 03 10:22

Trump Calls China, Japan Leaders To Discuss North Korea, Gets A Warning From Beijing Instead

Ahead of this week's G-20 summit in Hamburg, Germany, Donald Trump called the leaders of China and Japan to discuss the "threat posed by North Korea', along with trade issues, the White House said on Sunday. Trump spoke with Chinese President Xi Jinping and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, whose LDP had just suffered a devastating loss in the Tokyo Assembly elections, and according to the White House read out, "both leaders reaffirmed their commitment to a denuclearized Korean Peninsula" adding that "President Trump reiterated his determination to seek more balanced trade relations with America’s trading partners."

The terse statement did not provide further details of the call or say if Trump managed to persuade Xi to endorse his approach of exerting maximum pressure on North Korea, including a slew of further economic and trade sanctions.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

This, unfortunately, will not end well; but President Trump did it to himself, with regard to causing a marked deterioration of relations with China.

Jul 03 10:21

Israel tackles Trump’s Syrian blues

Government officials can be broadly put into two categories — those who take to bureaucratic skulduggery like fish to water and the rest who survive the shenanigans. It’s a matter of both DNA and acquired skills. Then, there is a miniscule category to which the US State Secretary Rex Tillerson belongs who either fail or refuse to reconcile with their fate. Do not be surprised if he takes voluntary retirement from Washington establishment and heads for the Deep South to his roots to be with his clan, his family. (Read here and here the vicious attacks by America’s “Jewish press” on Tillerson.)

There is, of course, a policy twist to it. The rising star is the US’ ambassador to the UN Nikki Haley, a protégé of the Jewish lobby. She has no background in diplomacy and seems a woman of average intelligence – remember her silly remarks on Kashmir? – a unseen (Jewish) hand is plotting her career. Haley is a permanent invitee to the president’s National Security Council meetings.

Jul 03 10:20

Nikki Haley: Warmonger Extraordinaire!

It must now be a prerequisite of those who become an American ambassador to the UN to possess certain characteristics and traits, the most important of which are rabid warmonger, child killer, and outright liar.

Jul 03 09:58

Heightening Sino-US Tensions

From July 3 – 6, Xi will visit Moscow and Berlin, ahead of attending the July 7 – 8 G20 summit in Hamburg.

He’s visiting Russia for the sixth time as China’s president. Since taking office, he and Putin held 20 previous talks – their relationship close and strengthening.

According to China Institute of International Studies Eurasian researcher Chen Yurong,

“(t)he close working relations between the two heads of states and their personal friendship has become a ‘locomotive’ in the development of bilateral relations between” their countries.

“They…exchange views on almost everything, which reflects the high levels of political trust between” them and their nations.

In Moscow, they’ll approve implementation of a bilateral Treaty of Good-Neighborliness and Friendly Cooperation.

China is Russia largest trading partner. Through May 2017, volume increased by 26% to $32.4 billion year-over-year.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

This is completely insane on the part of the American government; but over the last 20 years, insanity has been the norm for this country, geopolitically.

China needs to be viewed as a strategic partner, not as an enemy; the potential for fair trade between the US and China is huge, but irritating China with things like invasive US Naval tactics in the South China Sea, or selling weapons to Taiwan, may well wind up as a prelude to a war the US military can not win.

Jul 03 09:57

Lavrov: No visible difference between NATO forces in constant rotation and permanent positioning of NATO forces

NATO has repeatedly increased its military presence in those parts of Europe where there was an agreement not to, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said at a news conference.

"Your question is about the need for restraint in the issues of arms buildup between NATO and Russia: there are statistics, at least, and no one has denied it, we have presented it more than once that NATO has repeatedly increased its presence in those parts of Europe where it was agreed not to build up the armed forces on a permanent basis. NATO says that this is being done on the basis of rotation, constant ongoing rotation. Therefore, there is no difference between permanent deployment and the rotational deployment in the current NATO plans. We don't see it, "- said the Minister.

He also noted that the number of NATO exercises has increased many times, while the rationale for these exercises is of the nature of deterring the Russian Federation.

Jul 03 09:45

Only 2% Of US Politicians Actually Want To Stop Arming Terrorists - Here's Why

One of the few elected Democratic lawmakers with an extensive anti-war record, Rep. Tulsi Gabbard (D-Hawaii), has combined forces with Sen. Rand Paul (R-Kentucky) to push legislation through both the House and the Senate that would bar federal agencies from using taxpayer-backed funds to provide weapons, training, intelligence, or any other type of support to terrorist cells such as al-Qaeda, ISIS, or any other group that is associated with them in any way.

Jul 03 09:34

The Economic Motive for America’s Current Wars

Around half of Russia’s gas and oil into the EU is transported there via pipelines that traverse Ukraine, and this is a major reason why the Obama Administration (which was in service to the owners of the U.S.-based international corporations and even to the Koch brothers who heavily fund the Republican Party against Obama’s Democratic Party) started, by no later than 2011, its preparations for a coup in Ukraine, which occurred in February 2014, to overthrow the democratically elected President of Ukraine, Viktor Yanukovych, who, as had been planned and expected by the U.S. government, turned down the EU’s offer of membership because the highly uneconomic arrangement that the EU was offering would have cost Ukraine an estimated $160 billion.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

When Karl Marx made the observation that "All wars are economic in nature", the guy wasn't kidding!!

Jul 03 09:11

US Media Sells Disorder in Eastern Syria: US "progress" in eastern Syria is a prelude to protracted conflict, not peace and prosperity.

The Washington Post in a piece penned by David Ignatius, attempts to showcase US progress in eastern Syria where it admittedly and intentionally created the self-proclaimed “Islamic State” (ISIS) and where it now claims it is fighting and defeating it with proxies on the ground as well as an expanding US air and ground presence.

Titled, “As the Islamic State falls in Syria, one city offers a preview of the country’s future,” the piece attempts to portray efforts by the US to fill the vacuum left in the wake of a shrinking ISIS as being filled by stability brought by US proxies – primarily Kurdish militias.

Jul 03 09:04

US Won’t Leave Syria After The Islamic State (ISIS) Is Defeated, Says Commander of US Forces: Commander of the US-led anti-ISIS coalition anticipates a lengthy occupation of Syria in Syria, Iraq

he three-star US general in command of American forces in Syria and Iraq says the US will leave Syria as soon as ISIS is defeated, but not really. Actually, they will stick around, because after the ISIS state is defeated there will still be ISIS guerrillas to deal with:

Gen. Townsend promoted a young officer to first lieutenant on Wednesday — and he acknowledged to CBS News that U.S. troops won’t be leaving Syria any time soon.

“I think U.S. troops will start leaving Syria when ISIS is defeated,” Townsend said.

But will ISIS turn into an insurgency when they’ve lost all their territory?
“I think that’s the next stage of ISIS,” Townsend said.

“We call that ISIS 2.0 — an insurgency, rural. So I think we’ll still be here dealing with that problem set for a while.”

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Please, give me just a moment to wrap my head around this; so the illegal invasion of a sovereign country is going to continue as an illegal American occupation, ultimately leading to regime change in Damascus?!?

And forgive me, but have Bashar Al Assad's people gotten the memo on this?!?

And how is Russia's President Putin going to respond to this?!?!

Jul 03 08:47

When Will Russia Challenge US and Israeli Aggression in Syria?

Washington, Israel and their rogue allies are at war on Syria – naked aggression against a sovereign independent state threatening no one.

Both countries supply ISIS and other terrorists with arms, munitions and other material support – supported by terror-bombing, daily by US warplanes, Israel at its discretion, its sixth attack in the last 10 days occurring Saturday, an unjustifiably pretext cited like all previous incidents, saying:
“In response to projectiles launched earlier today at Israel from Syria, Israeli forces targeted the Syrian military artillery position that was the source of the previous fire.”

No casualties or damage was reported. So-called errant mortar fire or other projectiles almost certainly came from US and Israeli-supported terrorists – providing unjustifiable justification for IDF aggression.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Stephen Lendman is a fine writer, but I think he misses the heart of the intent by those in the bowels of power in the Unhinged Surveilled State of America, and that intent is to create a false flag, either in Syria or elsewhere, to be blamed on Russia, as the "justification" to start a war against it, as completely mad as such a scenario might be.

Otherwise, why would NATO have encircled Russia with its troops and equipment, as it has been for the last several years?!?

Jul 03 08:35

Trump: Right About Fake News Media, Wrong About Most Everything Else

Support the Constitution and The Bill of Rights!

At a Saturday rally, Trump was right, saying the “dishonest media(’s) agenda is not your(s)” – omitting self-criticism, failing to explain his agenda serves wealth, power and privilege exclusively.

Long forgotten are inaugural day promises. He’s a warrior president servant of power like his predecessors.

Saying he’d “fight for you with every breath in (his) body, and never, ever let you down” proved hollow rhetoric.

So was promising noninterventionism. He escalated Obama’s wars, perhaps intends new ones on Iran and/or North Korea.

Jul 03 07:25

Israeli Army unit crosses Blue Line on Lebanon’s south east border

An Israeli Army unit Saturday crossed the Blue Line on Lebanon’s southeast border, before withdrawing later in the afternoon, a source told The Daily Star.

An Israeli Army infantry unit, with the support of two Merkava tanks, five Hummer vehicles and a military SUV, crossed the Blue Line that was demarcated after the Israeli Army withdrew in 2000, opposite the Bawabat Hassan neighborhood in Hasbaya’s Kfar Shuba, Hezbollah's War Media center had said on Twitter.

The breach is one of many routine violations of the Blue Line, the source said.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

It seems as though the Israeli unit crossed the Lebanon border...simply to prove they could, and with impunity

Jul 03 07:20

Saudi Arabia’s Ruthless Crown Prince Threatens Neighbors, Unsettles Middle East

Webmaster's Commentary: 

What is horrific here, is how completely "taken in" President Trump appeared to be by the Saudi royal presence, after his trip to Riyadh earlier this year.

This could well translate as a Saudi US-supported war against Iran, which would probably spiral into a war against Russia, which would be a terrible mistake.

Jul 03 07:02

US General: Troops Should Stay in Iraq Long After ISIS Defeat: Says Troops Must Stay to Train Iraqi Forces

In an interview with the Fayetteville Observer, Lt. Gen. Stephen Townsend talked about a planned troop rotation coming up in September, saying he hoped the fighting over the city of Mosul would be over by then, but that despite predictions of an end to the ISIS war, US troops should stay.

Townsend’s comments about the US having a long-term military presence in Iraq is in keeping with other Pentagon officials, who have tried to blame the rise of ISIS between the end of the 2011 occupation and the 2014 reinvasion on the lack of US ground troops, despite the US having a substantial presence, and having spend years arming and training Iraq’s military.

Townsend insisted that the US troops would have to stay long after the ISIS war specifically to train up the Iraqi military again, and to make sure that they can actually fight off future insurgencies. There’s no indication how long this would take.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Lt. Gen. Townsend, a word here, please.

All attempts to train Iraqi military has been an unmitigated disaster.

Battle to retake Basra was a complete disaster

Iraq;
a total disaster

Let us be clear; what you are proposing here, is nothing short of a permanent occupation of Iraq, to insure that the government remains western-centric, and that its oil is only sold to specific countries, and only for the US dollar.

Jul 03 06:48

Qatar given 48 more hours to accept demands

Saudi Arabia and three allies boycotting Qatar have agreed to a request by Kuwait to extend by 48 hours Sunday's deadline for Doha to comply with a set of demands, according to a joint statement on Saudi state news agency SPA.

Kuwait had received a response by Qatar to a list of 13 demands presented to it by a Saudi-led bloc of Arab countries, Kuwait's state news agency KUNA said on Monday.

Without stating whether Qatar had rejected the ultimatum as was widely expected, KUNA said Kuwait's Emir Sheikh Sabah Al Ahmad Al Jaber Al Sabah asked Saudi Arabia and three other countries that have boycotted Qatar to grant it a 48-hour extension. Kuwait is mediating in the crisis.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Ironically, the extended deadline puts Saudi's "drop dead date" of their ultimatum to Qatar right on the American 4th of July celebration.

But the big question has to be, if Qatar doesn't accede to their demands, what then?!? A full - on invasion and regime change in Doha?!?

And what are the standing orders to commanders of those 10,000 plus American troops in Qatar right now, should such an invasion happen?!?

And what about the acceleration of the presence of Turkish troops in the country?!?
More Turkish troops arrive in Qatar, as Gulf tensions continue to escalate

Jul 03 06:43

Israeli Defense Minister Warns Syria, Lebanon: Don't Test Us

The Israeli defense minister said on Sunday that while Israel maintains a policy of staying out of the raging Syrian Civil War, breaches of the country's territorial sovereignty won't be tolerated.

"We have no intention of entering any conflict, but I advise our neighbors not to test us," Lieberman told military journalists during a briefing at the Kirya military headquarters in Tel Aviv, as cited by the Jerusalem Post.

"We will not tolerate any spillover into our territory."

He added that Syria and Lebanon already know that it is not a good idea to test Israel's military strength, implying the retaliatory strikes.

Additionally, Lieberman pointed out that Israel is ready to support a peace process in Syria — unless it involves Iran, Hezbollah or Assad.

"Keeping Assad in power is not in our security interests," he told reporters.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Translation of Liebermanspeak: we are setting up a situation which will necessitate a greater Israeli involvement in the Syrian war, to ensure an outcome to our liking.

Jul 03 06:27

NYT, WAPO SEND TOP REPORTERS TO STENOGRAPH FIVE O'CLOCK FOLLIES

When the U.S. military takes a bunch of journalists on a press junket to a foreign country it has a certain intention and prepares every detail in advance. There will be witnesses and local people who are briefed for their two minute talk with the journalists to convey exactly what the military wants them to convey. After enjoying local flair, for ten minutes max, some U.S. diplomatic official or a general will treat the journos to some good whiskey and a genuine local steak. The official will speak a few prepared lines on the record that will reinforce the story the locals were tasked to tell.

The outcome is predictable. The stories the journalists will write will be the same.

Gordon:

“We are not going to get beauty; it’s about pragmatism,” said Maj. Gen. Rupert Jones of the British Army, the deputy commander of the coalition force.
Ignatius:

Jul 03 06:09

CHINA SENDS WARSHIPS, FIGHTER JETS TO INTERCEPT US DESTROYER IN SOUTH CHINA SEA

Just days before Trump's meeting with the Chinese president in Hamburg later this week for the G-20 summit, the Trump administration sent a guided-missile destroyer near Triton Island in the South China Sea, Bloomberg reported, a move "which may cause concern ahead of President Donald Trump’s meeting with his Chinese counterpart."

According to an anonymous official cited by Bloomberg, the U.S. Navy sent the destroyer USS Stethem within 12 nautical miles (22 kilometers) of Triton Island on Sunday, passing through the contested waters on the basis of "innocent passage."

Webmaster's Commentary: 

..."Innocent passage", MY ASTROLABE!!

This is a provocation of the highest order, and the timing could not possibly be worse, with President Trump set to meet Chinese President Xi Jinping at the G-20, later this week.

I have to wonder if this was actually ordered by President Trump himself, or perhaps someone in the American Deep State, who wanted to thoroughly embarrass the President, and simultaneously upset Chinese president Xi before their meeting here.

Jul 02 09:18

More Turkish Troops Arrive in Qatar as Gulf Tensions Continue to Escalate

When Turkish troops were deployed to a military base in Qatar, it was huge news across the region, primarily because it was a show of support by the Erdogan government for the emirate at a time when many of Qatar’s neighbors are blocking them.

Jul 02 09:01

US Falsely Accuses Iran of Violating Nuclear Deal

It’s very difficult to accuse Iran of being in violation of the P5+1 nuclear deal, because they are plainly not. The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), which is responsible for policing the deal, confirms on a monthly basis that this remains the case, and that Iran has not been in violation of the pact.

That’s an inconvenience for the Trump Administration, which has repeatedly condemned the deal and insisted Iran would violate it. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley appears to have decided that the path of least resistance is overt lying, today claiming at the UN Security Council that Iran had “repeated violations” of the deal.

The claim was made literally during a meeting at which all the other permanent members of the Security Council were talking up how great it is that the deal is in place, and that Iran is showing such a deep commitment to its continued participation.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

With her blatant, and unrelentingly slavish support for Israel, which means she feels obligated to lie about Iran's compliance with the P5+1 Accord, Haley is fast approaching the VISS (Village Idiot Syndrome Status) with her brother and sister diplomats, who are doing everything to ignore her unrestrained rantings and ravings the best they can.

But please understand; there are elements with the Deep American State who will not rest until, to placate Israel, there is a US war against Iran in order to accomplish regime change in Tehran, no matter if this also means a war against Russia, which such a war against Iran, will probably create.

Jul 02 08:48

HACKED EMAIL SHOWS UAE AMBASSADOR LOBBYING THE OBAMA WHITE HOUSE ON YEMEN WAR

PART OF KEEPING close relationships with serial human rights violators, as the U.S. does, is the constant pressure from those governments to ignore their reported abuses. That dynamic was on full display in a hacked email exchange between the United Arab Emirates’ influential ambassador to the U.S. and a top Obama national security official. The sometimes testy back-and-forth between allies, which was obtained by The Intercept, shows how friendly foreign governments lobby the White House on human rights, and how the White House sometimes pushes back.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

That the US government frequently colludes with human rights violators, and massive perpetrators of war crimes, does NOT make me happy to be an American citizen right now.

And two of the worst offenders in these areas are Israel and Saudi Arabia.

Jul 02 08:42

More Turkish Troops Arrive in Qatar in Show of Support

When Turkish troops were deployed to a military base in Qatar, it was huge news across the region, primarily because it was a show of support by the Erdogan government for the emirate at a time when many of Qatar’s neighbors are blocking them.

The number of troops sent last week was not publicly reported, and that’s because it was not a lot, with the latest Turkish media report suggesting that 23 soldiers were sent back then, and the new deployments announced today brought the number to “at least 88.”

Turkish media suggested this number could rapidly grow, reaching 1,000 as Turkey looks to back its regional ally, and as Saudi Arabia and others demand Qatar expel the Turks outright. The deadline for that demand, and many others, is Sunday night, and Turkey’s deployment likely underscores that they don’t intend to leave.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

At this point, the Turkish troop numbers appear to be highly symbolic, but that could change in a heartbeat, if Saudi Arabia actually does invade Qatar, with the objective of regime change in mind.

Jul 02 08:38

As ISIS Wanes, New Wars Threaten to Emerge in Syria: Kurds See War With Turkey as Inevitable

Of course in Syria, the ISIS war is itself only part of a broader, more complicated war, and fighting between rebel factions and the government will likely continue beyond ISIS having territory. That doesn’t mean more wars won’t break out, however.

The Syrian Kurds certainly see it coming. On the one hand, many YPG are accusing Turkey of plotting to attack them in Afrin, but on the other hand, one YPG commander is openly threatening to invade Turkish-held territory Either way, US efforts to keep the YPG and Turkey from fighting seem likely to fail eventually.

Meanwhile, the US seems to be gearing up for its own new war in Syria, building up its forces in the country’s southeast with an express eye on fighting the Syrian government and the Shi’ite militias that back them. It’s unclear how the US imagines they can get into this war without getting Russia involved too, which could quickly make this a region, if not world-wide, war.

Jul 02 08:09

Syrian Kurds Plan to Liberate Northern Part of Syria From 'Turkish Invasion'

YPG Commander Sipan Hemo said that Syrian Kurdish militia does not recognize the Turkish "invasion" to the north of Syria and will "liberate" that part of the country.

Syrian Kurdish militia People's Protection Units (YPG) does not recognize the Turkish "invasion" to the north of Syria and will "liberate" that part of the country, YPG Commander Sipan Hemo said Friday.

"We don’t accept the Turkish state’s presence or invasion in this region in any form. I want to stress that we don’t recognize their alliances either. Our goal and struggle to liberate the Azaz-Jarablus area will continue," Hemo said, as quoted by the Firat new agency.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Have Syria's Al-Assad and Russia's Putin received the memo, that this is where the YPG intends to establish an independent Kurdistan?!?

Jul 02 08:01

HOW ISRAELI/SAUDI ‘ALLIANCE’ PLAYS TRUMP

“The Saudi king’s decision to elevate his son Mohammed bin Salman … is not merely the internal affair of the royal hierarchy, but a game-changing international event. The king’s son is ready to step into his allotted place in a new US-Arab-Israeli alliance established by President Trump in May, along with the UAE, Egyptian and Israeli leaders that will seek to dominate Middle East affairs. Israel will be accepted in a regional lineup for the first time alongside the strongest Sunni Arab nations who all share similar objectives, especially the aim to stop Iran” [emphasis added].

“A game-changing international event”? Why exactly are these Israelis so excited; why should the elevation of bin Salman, known by the initials MbS, be such a game-changer? Is there here something new? And how come the dismissal of Prince Nayef, whom MbS replaced as crown prince and who was a Western favorite, barely ruffled a leaf in protest?

Webmaster's Commentary: 

IF, in fact, this is the "quid pro quo" for Bin Salman's ascent, things seem to make sense here; but if, in fact, that is the case, the question of when Israel will be recognised looms large.

Jul 01 15:04

The Growing Danger of War With Iran

Citizens need to be fully aware of the possibilities, and associated dangers>>>

Jul 01 09:19

Amid Corruption Scandal, Germany Approves Sale of Three Submarines to Israel

Germany’s national security council has approved a controversial $1.5 billion defense deal to sell Israel three submarines with nuclear capabilities, according to Der Spiegel magazine.

As Israel seeks to replace its aging submarine fleet, it’s deal with Germany has been dogged by allegations of corruption ever since it was revealed that Miki Ganor, Israel’s intermediary for the ThyssenKrupp Marine Systems shipbuilding company, retained David Shimron, the personal lawyer and cousin of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, to act on his behalf during the transaction.

Jun 30 23:22

America's Death Throes

China and Russia have already ditched the US dollar in their vast energy trade. Now China is leveraging Saudi Arabia to also abandon the greenback for oil sales. No wonder, it seems, that US policies are increasingly lashing out.

US global power depends on its presumed economic prowess and military force. With its economy in long-term decline, precipitated by the teetering dollar, the US rulers are relying increasingly on militarism to project power. That tendency is pushing the world to war.

The challenge is to somehow steer the American military monster into a safe berth without eliciting a world war.

Jun 30 15:33

Washington Has Been At War For 16 Years: Why?

For sixteen years the US has been at war in the Middle East and North Africa, running up trillions of dollars in expenses, committing untold war crimes, and sending millions of war refugees to burden Europe, while simultaneously claiming that Washington cannot afford its Social Security and Medicare obligations or to fund a national health service like every civilized country has.

Jun 30 13:33

US Approves Weapons Sales To Taiwan Worth Of $1.4 Billion

The US State Department has approved weapons sales to Taiwan worth a total of $1.4 billion, a move which is certainly going to anger China which considers the self-governing island part of mainland China.

Jun 30 10:30

China Tells India to 'Stop Clamoring for War' and 'Learn Lessons' of 1962 Defeat

China has warned India to stop 'clamoring for war' and has reminded them of the thrashing they received from the People’s Liberation Army in 1962. The Indian Army has opened new helicopter bases in Sikkim, where tensions are rising.

Chinese troops reportedly crossed the Line of Actual Control at Doka La in Sikkim earlier this week and destroyed Indian Army bunkers.

The entire border is disputed, with a salient of Chinese territory — the Donglang region — jutted out between Sikkim and Bhutan.

"Donglang Region is part of China's territory. China's road-building activities in Donglang on its own territory are totally reasonable and understandable," said Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Lu Kang on Thursday (June 29).

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Looks as though this is one of those flashpoints which could get very nasty, very quickly.

Jun 30 10:03

Is the US Really Ready for 'Unprecedented Actions' in Syria?

Commenting on the above report, Alexander Gusev, a political analyst and director of the Institute for Strategic Planning noted to Sputnik Radio that the US broadcaster has previously discredited itself more than once, however this time the information might be truthful.

He pointed out that CNN reported on the aircraft carrier USS George H.W. Bush, along with two destroyers and two cruisers being deployed in the eastern Mediterranean Sea for routine patrol positions.

"The destroyers and cruisers could fire Tomahawk missiles without putting pilots in manned aircraft at risk. In addition, dozens of aircraft already in the Middle East for operations against ISIS (Daesh) in Syria and Iraq could be used in a potential strike," the broadcaster said.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Everything I am seeing points to only one conclusion: war with Russia over Syria and Iran.

Jun 30 09:31

Israeli aircraft bombs Syrian army positions in occupied Golan

An Israeli unmanned aerial vehicle has reportedly targeted Syrian army positions in Golan Heights after a projectile allegedly fired from Syria landed in the occupied territory.

Lebanon-based Arabic-language al-Manar television network reported on Friday that the drone struck a Syrian battle tank as well as a 105mm cannon in Syria’s strategic southwestern region of Quneitra near the border with Israeli-controlled Palestinian territories.

Earlier, the Israeli army had announced in a statement that “an errant projectile fired from Syria had hit an open area in the northern Golan Heights,” noting that the round was “a result of internal fighting in Syria.”

It is the fourth time in a week that projectiles from Syria have hit the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

I wonder just how long before the Syrian army strikes back at Israel; unfortunately, however, it would be just the "justification" Israel needs to provide public "cover" for attacking Syria further into its interior, and away from the Golan Heights.

Jun 30 09:06

After US-Backed Bombing Sparks Famine in Yemen, US Media Insists ‘US Not the Problem’

Washington Post deputy editorial page editor Jackson Diehl took a massive, human rights-violating catastrophe—the US-assisted Saudi bombing of Yemen for the past two-and-a-half years, and the massive famine it’s caused—and somehow turned it into a write-up on how good and noble the United States is. The Washington Post whitewashed the US’s role in the crisis and turned Saudi Arabia’s primary defender in the Senate, Lindsey Graham, into an unsung hero—a true masterwork in public relations reality inversion.

Diehl framed the topic as something both public and media have ignored, insisting, “No One Is Paying Attention to the Worst Humanitarian Crisis Since World War II” (6/25/17). This is a bold rhetorical gambit, not least because Diehl himself hasn’t made Yemen a topic of an article since the bombing first began in February 2015. “No one’s noticing this thing I just noticed” is a great way to frame oneself as a moral visionary, without the arduous work of ideological coherence.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

"The United States is not the problem here"?!?

Jackson Diehl, whatever your handlers are paying you to regurgitate their codswallop about the US's "high moral ground" in Yemen, it cannot possibly be enough to continue wading into the filthy depth of hypocrisy and deceit as deeply as you have gone, to create such an article.

Fact: The US-enabled Saudi war on Yemen is causing the deaths and maimings for life of Yemen's children.

Images: Yemeni children killed and maimed for life from Saudi bombing raids

Fact: Because the Saudis have blockaded Yemeni ports, so no food can get in, Yemeni children are dying from complications of malnutrition.

Images: Yemeni children dying from malnutrition

Fact: the malnutrition in Yemen has brought cholera in its wake, and one of the most severe epidemics the world has seen in the 21st century.

The images Saudi Arabia doesn't want you to see: Death of Yemeni children through cholera

Fact: The Saudis are using depleted uranium weapons in Yemen.

Images: Saudi Arabia using depleted uranium in Yemen

Fact: the usage of depleted uranium weapons in Yemen is having the precisely same effect on children here as it did in Falujah, Iraq, with birth deformities, stillbirths, and cancers soaring.

Images: Yemeni child suffering horrific birth defects from exposure to DU weapons

So in summation, Mr. Diehl, what you have done with this piece, is very much akin to a doctor's touching up a patient's ex ray, to assure them that their cancer isn't really all that bad.

And that cancer, sir, is participating in an immoral, illegal war, where the US government and its Saudi counterparts are committing war crimes, in the name of bringing back a US-sponsored puppet the Yemeni people do not want to rule them.

Jun 30 08:34

U.S. Retreats From Al-Tanf – Gives Up on Occupying South East Syria

The U.S. plan was to move from al-Tanf north towards the Euphrates river and to thereby capture and control the whole south-east of Syria. But Syria and its allies made an unexpected move and prevented that plan. The invaders are now cut off from the Euphrates by a Syrian west-to-east line that ends at the Iraqi border. On the Iraqi side elements of the Popular Military Unites under the command of the Iraqi government are moving to meet the Syrian forces at the border.The U.S. invaders are now sitting in the mid of a piece of rather useless desert around al-Tanf where their only option is to die of boredom or to move back to Jordan from where they came.

Syria Summary – The End Of The War Is Now In Sight – June 13

Jun 30 08:28

Make No Mistake, We Are Already at War in Syria

The war began in earnest when the Obama administration began building bases and sending Special Ops into Syria in the late summer of 2015, after the White House announced that it would “allow airstrikes to defend Syrian rebels trained by the U.S. military from any attackers, even if the enemies hail from forces loyal to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.”

Jun 30 08:26

A Quick Glance At Bunkers That Will House Thousands During Nuclear Attack

A bunker built inside a hollowed-out mountain in Colorado is only one of many secret shelters where 7,000 Americans will go to hide out from devastating nuclear annihilation. But don’t get your hopes up. These bunkers will only house the elites; those in government, while the rest struggle to survive.

Garrett Graff, the author of the book, “Raven Rock: The U.S. Government’s Secret Plan to Save Itself While the Rest of Us Die,” spoke to Inside Edition about his findings related to these secret shelters. The book is said to offer the “eye-opening” truth about the government’s plans to survive a nuclear war while a super majority of civilians will die. Not only that, the government’s money is taken from us, the taxpayer. We are paying for bunkers that we won’t be allowed to use.

Jun 30 08:10

6 Trigger Points: How the Conflict Between the United States and Iran Is Fast Escalating Toward War

The long-simmering conflict between the United States and Iran is fast escalating toward war. The battlefield is the desert expanse of eastern Syria where civil war has raged for the last five years. Tehran wants to keep U.S. forces out of the area, while Washington wants to use the region to wage war against Iran’s ally, Syria.

After 15 years of unsuccessful war in Afghanistan and Iraq, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson says the Trump administration is pursuing a policy of "regime change" in Iran that might lead to a third U.S. ground war in the Middle East since 2001.

Restraint is breaking down. While President Obama resisted U.S. involvement in the Syrian civil war, Trump has approved it. While Obama pursued dialog with Iran, Trump has embraced the new Saudi crown prince, Mohammed bin Salman, who laid down his country’s new, harsher line in April. ‘We will not wait until the battle is in Saudi Arabia," he said, "but we will work so the battle is there in Iran."

Webmaster's Commentary: 

The short answer to that last question is, undoubtedly, yes.

But there is, in the Iran War scenario, the 6,000 lb gorilla, draped over the Bosendorfer, and snoozing for the moment; that 6,000 lb gorilla is Russia, which has promised, through the last decades, to come to Iran's aid, militarily, should it be attacked.

War with Russia over Syria and Iran?!? The thought of this is nothing more than sheer, absolute, foaming at the mouth, dog-mad insanity; and yet, that ...appears to be the direction in which the US government and military are headed here.

This is reckless in the extreme, and I say this because at this moment in the US's military preparedness, it does not have the weaponry; the troop strength; the money, or the manufacturing to insure a positive outcome to a conventional war with Russia, so the timing is utterly insane.

Russia has been making incredible strides, recently, in its weapons capability:

Russia's deadliest War Machines

IMPRESSIVE: Russian Weapons at Aero India Expo 2017

Russia bolsters its Naval arsenal, and unveils its most powerful nuclear sub ever

Assessing Russia's reorganised and rearmed military

And what technology is getting foisted off on our American military?!? Ladies and gentlemen, I give you...Lockheed Martin's F-35.

F-35 GROUNDED INDEFINITELY OVER OXYGEN PROBLEMS

The F-35 program is once again in trouble, with full flight tests delayed until at least 2018

The F-35 Is a $1.4 Trillion Dollar National Disaster

Is the F-35 a trillion dollar mistake?!?

The F-35 won't have a real chance in combat

The F-35, amazingly, has even more problems than we thought

You catch my drift here. The US government and military has to spend smarter on its weapons and fighter programs; not just necessarily spend more money here.

American weapons manufacturers have to be disabused of the notion that whatever they produce, even if it doesn't function at all in the field, is still acceptable to the American government and military, and will ultimately paid for by US taxpayers.

In fact, some hard jail time for executives of corporations which fail to deliver as advertised, might go a long way toward curing the problem.

Jun 30 07:44

NATO Agrees on Afghan Troop Boost, Wrangles With US on Specific Numbers

NATO chief Jens Stoltenberg today confirmed that the alliance has agreed at a ministerial-level meeting on a plan to escalate military involvement in Afghanistan. The exact details of this are yet to be worked out, and it’s not clear which countries will actually commit troops to the buildup.

That could involve a substantial amount of wrangling with the US, as America’s own planned escalation has yet to be announced, and Defense Secretary James Mattis is heavily pushing NATO on the merits of continuing the already 16-year-old war into the future.

The basic outline agreed to would see up to 10,000 troops, between US and NATO nations, sent to Afghanistan, and puts the assumed US figure somewhere between 3,000 and 5,000. President Trump has delegated the decision on troop levels to Mattis, but he has yet to announce a decision.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

NATO Secretary General and US Sec-Def Mattis, a word, please.

One of the classic definitions of insanity is doing something precisely the same way, over and over, yet expecting a different outcome.

Surges in troop strength come and go, but Afghanistan still remains "the graveyard of empires" Alexander the Great was the only military conqueror who was able to hold on to it, and that ... was only for 3 years.
The Taliban Still Control Large Parts of Afghanistan and ISIS Has Established a Foothold

There is no military metric by which the invasion and occupation of Afghanistan can possibly considered a "success", unless you want to count the absolute explosion in the production of opium poppies a "success".

Afghanistan's multi-billion dollar heroin trade

Images:
American troops protecting opium poppy fields

Gentlemen, it is completely illogical to "magically believe" that another surge is going to have any greater affect than the surges which have preceded it; and that is the absolute, utter fallacy of this plan.

So, what to do?!?

I would like to politely suggest that all US/NATO troops be evacuated as quickly as safely possible, then the US and NATO should be negotiating with whatever government is left standing in Kabul for the pipeline and mineral rights. After all, it was access to, and potential control, of oil which brought the US government into war against Afghanistan in the first place;

In the Caspian Basin and beneath the deserts of Iraq, as many as 783 billion barrels of oil are waiting to be pumped. Anyone controlling that much oil stands a good chance of breaking OPEC's stranglehold overnight, and any nation seeking to dominate the world would have to go after it. The long-held suspicions about George Bush's wars are well-placed. The wars in Afghanistan and Iraq were not prompted by the terrorist attacks in New York and Washington. They were not waged to spread democracy in the Middle East or enhance security at home. They were conceived and planned in secret long before September 11, 2001 and they were undertaken to control petroleum resources. The "global war on terror" began as a fraud and a smokescreen and remains so today, a product of the Bush Administration's deliberate and successful distortion of public perception. The fragmented accounts in the mainstream media reflect this warping of reality, but another more accurate version of recent history is available in contemporary books and the vast information pool of the Internet. When told start to finish, the story becomes clear, the dots easier to connect. Both appalling and masterful, the lies that led us into war and keep us there today show the people of the Bush Administration to be devious, dangerous and far from stupid

Jun 30 07:40

Senior Trump Allies Are Laying the Groundwork for War with Iran

Iran was one of Donald Trump’s favorite boogeymen on the campaign trail—specifically the Obama Administration’s deal to lift some sanctions in return for a rollback and/or slowdown of the Iranian nuclear program. The effectiveness of this exchange cannot be truly ascertained for years, as the swap created immediate relief for the Iranians and long-term concessions to the Western world, but we know that Iran has been freed up to funnel more support to their proxy groups promoting terrorism—like Hezbollah—and so it is very easy to denigrate this deal right now. However, the entire motivation behind the agreement was to push the United States and Iran off the path to war—as the main point of concern from Barack Obama’s perspective was allowing a country that harbors terrorism to own a nuclear weapon, which would likely set off a nuclear arms race in the most volatile area of the world.

Jun 30 07:33

Philippines says beheaded civilians found in rebel-held town

Five decapitated civilians were found in a Philippine city occupied by Islamist rebels on Wednesday, the military said, warning the number of residents killed by rebel "atrocities" could rise sharply as troops retake more ground.

The discovery of the five victims among 17 bodies retrieved would be the first evidence that civilians trapped in besieged Marawi City have been decapitated during the five-week stand by militants loyal to the Islamic State group, as some who escaped the city have previously reported.

Jun 30 07:25

General: US Troops ‘Just Getting Started Good’ in Raqqa

US commander Lt. Gen. Stephen Townsend today told CBS News that he believes only about 25-30% of the military campaign for the ISIS capital city of Raqqa has happened, talking up the massive US military buildup in the area, and insisting that US troops are “just getting started good” in the city’s invasion.

This is all happening without the permission of the Syrian government, of course, but Townsend downplayed the risk of clashes with Syria or Russia over that fact, saying that he believes they’re comfortable with focusing on the rest of the country while the US invades Raqqa, and that he doesn’t anticipate any conflicts.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Apparently, General Townsend speaks English as a second language, which comes rather as a surprise to me; to characterise the activities of US troops as “just getting started good” is a little unnerving.

If his thought processes are as sloppy as is his English, we are in deep trouble in this immoral and illegal invasion of Syria.

Unfortunately, it is only a question of time before there is a military clash between the US/Syrian/Russian forces.

Russia has warned us that any attack on any Syrian/Russian aircraft by the US military will bring a "proportional response". The potential for a full-scale war between the US and Russia over Syria remains as serious as a heart attack right now.

Jun 30 07:16

Qatar Working With US, Kuwait on Response to Saudi Demands

US and Kuwaiti officials are working with the government of Qatar on a formal response to the 13 demands issued last week by Saudi Arabia and its allies against the tiny Gulf nation. The deadline for a response is believed to be Sunday.

And while all the signs are that the response is going to be some variation on “no,” Qatari Foreign Minister Mohammed bin Abdulrahman al-Thani appeared to want something a bit more nuanced than that, saying that his country is open to pursuing negotiations in earnest.

It’s not at all clear that’s an option, however, as the Saudi government has insisted that the demands are all “non-negotiable” and both Bahrain and the United Arab Emirates have insisted they’ll accept nothing less than an absolute acceptance by Qatar.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

There are a couple of serious questions to be explored here. The first is, what, precisely, is Saudi Prince Bin Salman prepared to actually do of the Qatari government tells him to "pound sand"; is he actually going ahead with a physical invasion of Qatar?!?

And secondly, if such an invasion takes place, what orders have been given to the 10,000 US military troops working in Qatar?!? To join the Saudis in the invasion against Qatar, or stand down, until the dust is settled?!?

Qatar has been a staunch ally of the US to date; so what would a US-enabled Saudi invasion of that country look like, to both the government of Qatar, and to the larger Middle East?!? I have one word on that: betrayal.

Jun 30 07:09

House Committee Votes to Repeal AUMF, Ruled ‘Out of Order’

In a stunning move, the House Appropriations Committee today approved an amendment to the massive military spending bill offered by Rep. Barbara Lee (D – CA). The amendment, passed in a voice vote, and would repeal the 2001 Authorization for the Use of Military Force (AUMF).

Rep. Lee has long been pushing amendments and bills trying to end America’s assorted wars. That one actually passed committee this time is nothing short of newsworthy, though the House Republican leadership was also quick to insist the vote doesn’t actually count.

House Republicans are steaming about the Lee Amendment, insisting it cripples the legal basis for all of America’s many, many wars, not just at present but in the future. They’re going for a do-over on the amendment, insisting the vote was “out of order” and therefore didn’t really count.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

AUMFs are the vehicles preferred by Presidents to start wars from the Bush administration forward, when, legally, only Congress can declare war.

It will be interesting to see where the Lee Amendment goes from here, if anywhere.

Presidents of the Unhinged, Surveilled States of America do not like their illegal war powers impeded by a silly little really that they do not have the power to declare war.

Jun 30 06:50

Military option for North Korea being prepared for Trump, McMaster says

The Trump administration is considering a wider range of strategies on how to deal with North Korea, including the military option, Trump's national security adviser said Wednesday.

“The threat is much more immediate now and so it’s clear that we can’t repeat the same approach – failed approach of the past,” H.R. McMaster, the adviser, said during a security conference with Homeland Security Chief John Kelly.

He said it would be insanity to continue to do the same thing the U.S. has done for years and expect a different result.

McMaster’s comments come a day before Trump is scheduled to meet with South Korean President Moon Jae-in. South Korea’s new leader vowed to stand firmly with Trump against North Korea, downplaying his past advocacy for a softer approach toward the isolated regime.

Jun 29 22:42

Washington Has Been At War For 16 Years: Why?

Paul Craig Roberts

For sixteen years the US has been at war in the Middle East and North Africa, running up trillions of dollars in expenses, committing untold war crimes, and sending millions of war refugees to burden Europe, while simultaneously claiming that Washington cannot afford its Social Security and Medicare obligations or to fund a national health service like every civilized country has.

Considering the enormous social needs that cannot be met because of the massive cost of these orchestrated wars, one would think that the American people would be asking questions about the purpose of these wars. What is being achieved at such enormous costs? Domestic needs are neglected so that the military/security complex can grow fat on war profits.

The lack of curiousity on the part of the American people, the media, and Congress about the purpose of these wars, which have been proven to be based entirely on lies, is extraordinary.

Jun 29 15:33

House panel approves repeal of U.S. military powers enacted in wake of 9/11

A House committee on Thursday passed an amendment to repeal broad war-making powers approved by Congress in the aftermath of 9/11 that have allowed the U.S. military to take various actions overseas in the years since.

Jun 29 13:19

US-Backed Syrian Fighters Warn of Open Warfare with Turkish Forces

An official with the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), the coalition of US-backed militants with the stated goal of creating a secular, democratic, federalized Syria, said that the SDF sees a "big possibility of open, fierce confrontation" with Turkish forces in northwestern Syria. This comes after the two sides exchanged fire on Wednesday.

The senior official, Naser Haj Mansour, told Reuters that the SDF would confront the Turks "if they try to go beyond the known lines." Turkish forces are there to support anti-government, primarily Islamist Syrian rebels.

Mansour went on to say that a Turkish attack against SDF-controlled areas would do "great harm" to the SDF's efforts against Daesh. The two factions are currently embroiled in a struggle over the city of Raqqa, Daesh's primary stronghold in Syria.

the city, trapping Daesh within. "There is a plan to impose a complete siege, but if this will take a day or two days, I can't say," he said.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Unintended consequences yet again!!

Jun 29 12:39

Why Congress Won’t Agree to Stop Arming Terrorists

he director of the National Security Agency under Ronald Reagan – Lt. General William Odom said in 2008:

By any measure the US has long used terrorism. In ‘78-79 the Senate was trying to pass a law against international terrorism – in every version they produced, the lawyers said the US would be in violation.

General Odom is absolutely right …

And because the U.S. itself uses terrorism, it’s very hesitant to get others in trouble for using terrorism.

And that’s why Congress is refusing to pass a bill agreeing to stop funding terrorists. Specifically, Senator Rand Paul and Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard introduced bills to whose simple name accurately describes what they want: The “Stop Arming Terrorists Act”.

But neither bill looks like it has any chance of being passed right now:
The House bill has only 14 co-sponsors, and was given a mere 6% chance of passing by Skopos Labs.

The Senate bill has NO co-sponsors, and was given a measly 3% chance of passing by.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

THAT ...is officially horrible!

Jun 29 12:31

Trump’s Chaos is Covering for Stealth Escalation Overseas

The escalation directly contradicts Trump’s stances during the election campaign. Back then, he indicated his skepticism of regime change, claiming — falsely — that he had opposed the Iraq invasion and denouncing the intervention in Libya. He indicated that he saw no reason to take sides in the Syrian civil war, suggesting that perhaps the United States could join with Syria and its ally Russia to take out the Islamic State. He promised he would “bomb the s--- out of ISIS” but would not get bogged down in the Middle East. This stance appealed strongly to voters weary of war and looking for a leader who would focus on our challenges here at home. That promise has now clearly been trashed.

Jun 29 12:24

Dispatch From the Middle East: U.S. Buildup All About Iran ,Requiring an American wedge between Syria and Iraq.

So what’s with the continued U.S. presence in al-Tanaf, an area where there is no ISIS presence and where the Syrian army and its allies have been making huge progress against their militant Islamist opponents?

Since regime-change plans fell flat in Syria, Beltway hawks have been advocating for the partitioning of Syria into at least three zones of influence – a buffer zone for Israel and Jordan in the south, a pro-U.S. Kurdish entity along the north and north-east, and control over the Syrian-Iraqi border.

Since regime-change plans fell flat in Syria, Beltway hawks have been advocating for the partitioning of Syria into at least three zones of influence – a buffer zone for Israel and Jordan in the south, a pro-U.S. Kurdish entity along the north and north-east, and control over the Syrian-Iraqi border.

Jun 29 11:15

Mattis: Syria Fight Will Only Get More Complicated After Raqqa Is Captured

While US officials have for months been presenting the invasion of Raqqa as the end-all, be-all battle against ISIS, they’ve also been preparing the public for the idea of attacking the “next ISIS capital,” and so on. Secretary of Defense James Mattis was even more direct, predicting that the situation would be even more complex after the fall of Raqqa.

“You have to play this thing very carefully,” Mattis insisted, saying it would become harder and harder to keep the various factions fighting against ISIS from getting into “incidents” against one another, while talking of continued support for the Kurdish YPG.

The “incidents” in question have mostly been US warplanes attacking Shi’ite militias, and shooting down the occasional warplane or drone aligned with the Syrian government. Though the US has claimed they “welcome” Syrian offensives against ISIS, they’ve continued to attack them every time they get close.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Sec Def Mattis, a word, please: Russia's Sergei Ryabkovhas warned that any further US incursion military into the sovereign nation of Syria will have ...consequences.

Russia warns US its fighter jets are now potential target in Syria

I would like to politely point out that Russia has been invited by the Syrian government and military to get rid of the jihadists; military from the Unhinged, Surveilled State of America have not been invited to do so.

What the US government has done here, no matter the cloddishly clumsy spin about "fighting ISIS", has been to invade a sovereign country on a horrifically flimsy pretext, in order to attempt regime change in Damascus.

And yesterday, the US Ambassador to the UN made the following, breathtaking statement at the UN:

US envoy Nikki Haley: No place for Assad in post-ISIS Syria

Sir, what can that statement possibly mean except as a neon-orange, brightly blinking light, telegraphing that the US government is planning to create regime change in Damascus, coming close on the heels of ousting ISIS in Raqqa?!?

IS a war with Russia over Syria really worth it, in the larger scheme of things?!?

Jun 29 10:08

Ron Paul: Trump is Just Like CNN, Putting Out His Own False News to Start War in Syria

In a peculiar move, the White House announced Monday evening a chemical weapons attack in Syria will be carried out soon by the regime of Bashar al-Assad against civilians — the second government-launched attack on his own people in the past few months — and that the U.S. would pulverize Syrian forces as retribution.

If, that is, gargantuan holes in logic suit your fancy — because nearly every facet of the above ‘facts’ touted by the corporate press and White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer depart so far from the truth as to be farcically unrecognizable.

Spicer tweeted.......,

Jun 29 09:53

Demand for Russian Warships Skyrockets Amid Syria Campaign

International demand for Russian warships has been picking up since the start of Russia’s military operation in Syria, President Putin’s adviser on military-technical cooperation with foreign countries, Vladimir Kozhin, told reporters on Monday.

“Everyone sees the great job our ships are doing there. Our ships are in high demand, especially frigates and corvettes,” Kozhin said, when asked how the impact Russia’s operation in Syria has had on the export of Russian naval ships.

“We have also seen an uptick in foreign demand for our high-speed boats, coastal defense systems and small boats equipped with drones,” Vladimir Kozhin added.

"The Russian Navy's Admiral Essen, Admiral Grigorovich frigates and Krasnodar submarine launched six Kalibr cruise missiles from the eastern part of the Mediterranean Sea on Daesh terrorist group targets in Syria," the ministry said in a statement.

The statement noted that the Krasnodat submarine carried out a submerged launch of the missiles.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

I can certainly understand; these ships and weapons actually do what they are supposed to do, unlike the US military's F-35, or interceptor missile, which at the moment, are both epic fails.

Jun 29 09:48

Nato warns cyber attacks 'could trigger Article 5' as world reels from Ukraine hack

A cyber attack against any member state would trigger c - Nato's mutual defence clause - the alliance has warned after a massive computer hack paralysed government ministries and dozens of businesses in Ukraine before spreading around the world.

The latest global cyber attack is believed to have been designed to cause chaos rather than extort money. Ukrainian officials have pointed at Russia, which is fighting an undeclared war with Ukraine in the east of the country and has been blamed for previous cyber attacks on Kiev.

Jens Stoltenberg, the Nato secretary general, said alliance members agreed last year that a cyber attack could trigger Article 5 of the north Atlantic treaty in the same way as a conventional military assault and promised more help to Ukraine to bolster its own cyber defences.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Secretary General Stoltenberg, a word, please: I would strongly suggest that you actually find the offending national actor which put this virus into play, rather than flippantly blaming Russia for it, as NATO seems to do for everything else these days, as a prelude to your much-lusted-after war against it.

Jun 29 09:37

Russia vs. America in Syria

The author of the article, a civilian with no military experience, makes a basic mistake, he assumes that the Russians will act like idiots and fight the kind of war the US would want to impose upon them. That is kind of assumptions most newbies make and which make for excellent propaganda articles. The problem is, of course, that there is absolutely no reason at all why the Russians should collaborate with such a ridiculous scenario. So, let’s get back to basics here.

Jun 29 08:39

"IT IS THE PRESSTITUTES, NOT RUSSIA, WHO INTERFERED IN THE US PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION"

And, of course, the American people, the European peoples, and the US and European governments are being conditioned by the “Russia did it” storyline to distrust Russia and to accept whatever dangerous and irresponsible policy toward Russia that Washington comes up with next.

Is the anti-Russian propaganda driven by ratings as Bonifield is reported to claim, or are ratings the neoconservatives and military/security complex’s cover for media disinformation that increases tensions between the superpowers and prepares the ground for nuclear war?

RT acknowledges that the entire story could be just another piece of false news, which is all that the Western media is known for.

Jun 29 08:36

US FALSE FLAG THREATS AGAINST SYRIA DESIGNED TO PREVENT TRUMP/PUTIN MEETING

In just over a week, the G20 summit of nations is to convene in Germany.

This will be the first time that Donald Trump and President Putin will have been in the same room and many are suggesting that the two will meet on the sidelines of the main summit as world-leaders often do at such events.

Many in the generally unreliable western mainstream media are suggesting that Donald Trump is keen to meet Vladimir Putin at the G20 but that some US advisers to POTUS do not want the meeting to happen. It must be made clear that such reports are totally uncorroborated and are coming from sources such as Britain’s notoriously inaccurate and dishonest Independent.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

At this moment, the Trump Administration appears to be badly factionalised, and it does not appear that President Trump is fully in control of America's foreign policy; that needs to change, and quickly.

But if I could, for one moment, have President Trump's ear, I would tell him this; your meeting with Russia's President Putin at the G-20 in Hamburg is critical for peace in this world.

Without this meeting, the US government and military may well continue to slouch toward war with Russia over Syria, and this would be an even worse military misadventure than has been Afghanistan.

And President Trump, please know this; although President Putin may use a translator, his English is perfect; he will understand every nuance of every word you say to him even without it being translated into Russian.

Jun 29 08:16

Trump’s Chaos is Covering for Stealth Escalation Overseas by

Been trying to tell you folks. Opposition to Trump and the resulting chaos and confusion is being used to set the stage for WW3!

While Washington is fixated on President Trump’s tweets, antics, lies and Russiagate, the administration is ramping up a stealth escalation of our military involvement across the Middle East. As Naomi Klein warns, Trump’s “rolling shock of the chaos and spectacle” distracts from radical actions both at home and abroad. Across the Middle East, the administration drives the United States ever further into wars without end, increasing the dangers of direct military confrontation with Russia and Iran, with little awareness and no mandate from the American people. This is a recipe for calamity.

Jun 29 08:16

TEN BASIC FORMS OF FAKE NEWS USED BY MAJOR MEDIA

Webmaster's Commentary: 

One of the things I detest about the "Common Core" curriculum is the suppression of critical thinking, allegedly, for the "common good" (i.e., the " good" of the corporations, or the government, which want to "sell" us solutions for non-existent problems).

At that point, when critical thinking no longer exists, mass opinion can be manipulated in any geopolitical direction, such as the Bush-Era mantra that "Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction", as the excuse/lie to create war.

Please be very intellectually aware, in the next couple of weeks, because, looking at all the evidence, it appears that the Trump Administration is going to attempt to "sell" the American people on a ground war against Syria.

The Russian government has warned, in no uncertain terms, that an escalation of US meddling in the sovereign state of Syria will have ...consequences.
Russia warns US its fighter jets are now potential target in Syria

Unfortunately, just because something is the most ham-fistedly, pig-headedly stupid thing this government can do, is absolutely no guarantee that it won't do it.

Don't "duck and cover" during this period of time; please plan and prepare.

Jun 29 04:39

FLASHBACK: Senator Harry Reid: Give Trump Fake CIA Intel Briefings

In light of McMaster's manipulation of intelligence reports. They aren't doing it just to Trump; they are doing it to the American people.

Jun 28 10:12

URGENT: Unusual Flights of US Spying Planes over Syrian Coasts

The Arabic-language al-Mayadeen quoted well-informed sources as saying that a US navy's P-8A Poseidon spy plane has been spotted flying over Syria's coastal line along Eastern Mediterranean Sea.

The sources told al-Mayadeen that the US aerial operation to gather information along Syria's coastal regions has unusually increased in recent days, adding that unusual operation of the US reconnaissance flights show that the US army is paving the ground for carrying out a new move in the region.

The Spokesperson for the United States administration accused Syria of preparing to stage a chemical attack in the Arab country, threatening that Washington would make Damascus pay “a heavy price.”

Webmaster's Commentary: 

IF, in fact, these reports are true, the timing, and the increase, of these recon flights concerns me greatly, after the debacle of Trump and his minions accusing the Syrian government of wanting to do more chemical attacks against their own people.

I have to wonder if Trump, Mattis, and Tillerson are actually contemplating a decap strike against Damascus, coupled with an attempted regime change, and soon; such an act would be fraught with horrific risks, because Putin has declared that any such a move would mean that Russia would be at war with the United States.

Trump plays "Nuclear Chicken" with Putin over Syria.

Jun 28 09:50

Moscow warns Washington against ‘incendiary, provocative action’ in Syria

Moscow has warned the US against taking unilateral action in Syria, as there is no threat from the Syrian military, Russia’s Foreign Ministry said. The statement comes after the US accused Syria of preparing for a chemical attack, without giving any evidence.

Asked if Russia had warned the US administration against any unilateral action in Syria, Russia’s deputy foreign minister, Gennady Gatilov, replied that Russian officials have “always spoken about that, including in relation to their [US] latest strikes on Syrian armed forces.”

“We believe that it’s unacceptable and breaches Syria’s sovereignty, isn’t caused by any military need, and there is no threat to the US specialists from the Syrian Army. So it’s incendiary, provocative action,” Gatilov said, as cited by RIA Novosti.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

I would strongly suspect that those in the bowels of the American Deep State caught enough flak from literally telegraphing that they were going to create a false flag in Syria, to be blamed on Syria, Iran, and Russia, that it reluctantly backed down from doing so.

But don't think they won't try something else, and in the very near future, because the loyal Al-Assad military is winning the war against ISIS on the ground.

Jun 28 09:47

PAKISTAN WILL REPORTEDLY TEST A UKRAINIAN-BUILT ‘OPLOT-P’ MAIN BATTLE TANK

The Malyshev Factory in Kharkiv, Ukraine rolled out an Oplot main battle tank (MBT) and conducted a mobility test of it on Friday, June 23 with Ukraine’s Interior Minister Arsen Avakov and Secretary of the National Security Defence Council Oleksandr Turchynov in attendance.

Ukrainian news outlets, such as Depo Harkiv, claim – citing Malyshev Factory employees – that this specific Oplot MBT – dubbed “Oplot-P – will be sent to Pakistan.

Jun 28 09:35

Middle East At Point Of No Return As Saudi-Qatar Rift Deepens

At present, the Young Prince of Riyadh, Mohammed Bin Salman, has been given the key to power. This has happened at a very difficult time for not only the Kingdom, but also for the whole Gulf region and its neighbors. The choice made by King Salman to promote his son is a remarkable one but could, from a Saudi perspective, be the only viable choice. The need for a 180 degree change in the economic and social policy which keeps Saudi Arabia a strategic regional player is essential. Without radical changes, such as those presented in Vision 2030 or the Aramco IPO project, the Kingdom’s future could be bleak, as the era for “Rentier States” is over.

Jun 28 09:18

WashPo: Illegal-Alien Recruits In Military Bring Unsolvable Security Threats

More than 1,000 illegal aliens accepted into the U.S. military pose impossible-to-fix security concerns, according to a report in the Washington Post.
The Post’s report cites a Pentagon memo which says that 4,100 of 10,000 illegal alien recruits are facing “enhanced screening,” and that “30 percent [of those] subject to ‘enhanced screening’ have ‘unmitigable derogatory information’ that could bar them from service.”

The Post’s article is focused on the interests of illegal aliens, and ledes with the claim that “The Pentagon is considering a plan to cancel enlistment contracts for 1,000 foreign-born recruits without legal immigration status, knowingly exposing them to deportation, a Defense Department memo shows.”

Jun 28 09:11

Trump Plays Nuclear ‘Chicken’ with Putin Over Syria

U.S. President Donald Trump is playing a game of nuclear “chicken” with Russian President Vladimir Putin, regarding Putin’s threat on June 19th to go to war against the United States if the U.S. again shoots down, inside Syria — in the sovereign territory of the internationally-recognized-as-legal sovereign Syrian government — Syrian aircraft, or the aircraft of any of the foreign governments that have allied with Syria: Russia, Iran, and China.
After the U.S. had shot down a Syrian government plane on June 19th, which was bombing jihadists whom the U.S. government backs in order to overthrow the Syrian government, Russia announced:

“In areas where Russian aviation is conducting combat missions in the Syrian skies, any flying objects, including jets and unmanned aerial vehicles of the international coalition discovered west of the Euphrates River, will be followed by Russian air and ground defenses as air targets” — meaning ordered out, or else immediately shot down.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

President Trump, a word please: I would suggest that you take this statement by Russia's President Putin as seriously as you would a heart attack.

The guy is not known for bluff or bluster, and if he says something, he will, inevitably, follow through.

I strongly encourage you to meet him in Hamburg for the G-20, and spend some time to get to know him; whatever chance of salvaging peace on this planet may well depend on it, Mr. President.

Jun 28 08:52

US, UK, France Sign Deal to Boost Anti-Submarine Coordination

Naval leaders from the United Kingdom, France and the United States signed an agreement, June 1, designed to increase coordination for anti-submarine warfare activities of the three countries as they operate in the 5th Fleet area of operations, according to official statement.

Jun 28 08:39

Tillerson and Mattis Cleaning Up Kushner’s Middle East Mess

But the single most important reason for the Qatar tilt is obvious to anyone who knows how to read a map. The U.S. leases the al-Udeid Air Base, southwest of Doha, which is home to the Air Force’s 379th Air Expeditionary Wing. The U.S. (and the Qataris), not only mount fighter-bombers from al-Udeid against ISIS units in Iraq and Syria, the base serves as the first line of defense against Iranian encroachments in the region. Even more crucially, al-Udeid not only protects America’s Persian Gulf allies, it protects Israel – and would be a launching point for U.S. aircraft against Iran were Israel to be attacked by the Islamic Republic.

Jun 28 08:33

Saudi Arabia Insists Qatar Demands Are ‘Non-Negotiable’

Suggestions from US officials that they’d like to see Qatar and Saudi Arabia negotiate over the list of demands the later has issued don’t appear to be going anywhere, with Saudi Arabia’s Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubair insisting that the terms of the demands are non-negotiable.

“We made our point,” Jubeir insisted adding that the Qataris “know what they have to do” to placate the kingdom. Saudi Arabia have Qatar 13 demands and 10 days to accept them. The demands include shutting all Qatari media, closing diplomatic facilities in Iran, expelling Turkey from its Qatari base, and agreeing to pay unspecified “reparations” for past disagreements.

Qatari FM Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman al-Thani suggested that didn’t matter at any rate, because Qatar considers the demands “baseless and unacceptable,” saying that any demands that would be taken seriously would need to be “realistic and enforceable.”

Webmaster's Commentary: 

President Trump, a word, please: apparently emboldened by your visit there, the Saudis feel as though they can get away with this, and no international repercussions (particularly from the United States) will happen if they move, militarily, against Qatar.

Once the deadline for the Saudi's "or else" is over (and I believe that will happen this Sunday, 2 July), all hell could break loose here, with Saudi Arabia moving against Qatar, which now has about 3,000 Turkish troops on their soil to defend it.

And sir, I have to ask; just what, please, are the standing orders to the commanders for the over 10,000 US troops stationed inside Qatar should such a scenario take place over this weekend, or next week?!?

Jun 28 08:14

Mattis: US Will Keep Arming Syrian Kurds After Raqqa Falls

In comments that are doubtless going to further anger Turkey about US policy in Syria, Defense Secretary James Mattis insisted the current program of arming the Kurdish YPG faction would not end after the capture of the ISIS capital city of Raqqa, and that they might just change the sort of weapons they’re giving the Kurds after that.

This comes less than a week after the US had assured the Turkish government that not only would the US stop arming the Kurds after the defeat of ISIS, but that they’d then take all the weapons back from the Kurds at that point. Mattis appeared to downplay the chances of this, however, saying only that “we’ll do what we can” to recover the arms.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Erdogan has to know that Mattis is powerless to prevent the Kurds from hanging on to those weapons.

Jun 28 08:07

Pentagon, State Dept ‘Clueless’ on Trump’s Assad Allegation

Last night, the White House issued a surprise statement accusing the Syrian government of preparing a chemical weapons attack and threatening to make them pay “a heavy price” for doing so. This immediately suggested another US attack on Syria was imminent. No one saw this coming, including the Pentagon and the State Department.

Pentagon officials say they were totally unaware if this putative evidence of a chemical attack until the moment the White House issued the statement, something they completely didn’t see coming. The State Department, which would normally be involved in coordinating such an important press release, also wasn’t consulted.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

I am very concerned about the next week or so, from the 4th of July celebration next Tuesday, through the G-20 summit in Hamburg, Germany on the 7th and 8th of next month.

I think we could very well see a false flag happen in this timeframe, to be blamed on Syria, as the "justification" for a full-on US invasion of the country, to achieve regime change in Damascus.

Of course, the White House's and Nikki Haley's charges bear two areas of intense scrutiny.

First, why would Al-Assad do something this stupid, i.e., a chemical attack against his own people, when his troops are actually winning on the ground?

And secondly, weren't Syria's chemical weapons destroyed several years back through a Russian-brokered, UN supervised program several years ago?!?

If, in fact, these accusations were a just "test run" to see how the American people would react to such an action, I would be willing to bet bet that the overnight polls were overwhelmingly negative.

Jun 28 07:54

Trump, Macron to pursue 'common response' in Syria

President Trump and French President Emmanuel Macron vowed to pursue a "common response" to the Assad regime in Syria in the event of another chemical weapons attack, the French government said Tuesday after the two leaders spoke.

"The purpose of the meeting was to prepare for the bilateral meeting of the two presidents during the G20 meeting in Hamburg on 7 and 8 July," the Elysee Palace said in a statement about the phone call between Trump and Macron.

"They also took stock of the Syrian issue and the need to work towards a common response to a chemical attack in Syria," the statement continued. "The two presidents spoke about the situation in the Gulf and the need to avoid any escalation in the region. Both stressed that the fight against terrorism and its financing is a common challenge for all the countries of the region."

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Lying in concert with DC and French President Macron, are we, Washington Examiner?!?

Ron Paul: Seymour Hersh Reporting Trump Knew Latest Syria Chemical Attack Was False Flag; Bombed Assad Anyway; "A Shame"

Jun 27 13:33

ISRAELI WARPLANES HIT MULTIPLE TARGETS IN GAZA STRIP

The Israeli army bombed several targets across the Gaza Strip overnight. Israeli attacks were recorded in at least three locations in Gaza, Palestinian security sources and witnesses said, with Hamas bases struck near the southern city of Rafah and Gaza City, as well as an empty area in the center of Gaza, Al Jazeera reported.

Jun 27 11:33

US May Be Preparing for 'Preemptive Strike' on Syria Amid Chemical Weapons Claim

The United States might be preparing for a "preemptive" attack on Syrian government troops as the White House warned of a possible chemical attack allegedly planned by Damascus, senior Russian lawmaker Konstantin Kosachev said Tuesday.

Earlier in the day, the White House claimed that Washington had identified "potential preparations" for a chemical attack by Syrian President Bashar Assad’s forces.

The Kremlin commented on the claims and said that it considers US' threats against Syrian legitimate leadership to be "unacceptable." Damascus also denied the information.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

I think the Russian analysis, presented here at sputniknews.com, is completely reasonable.

We are most likely looking at an horrific false flag operation, courtesy of the US military and various Us alphabet soup agencies in Syria, to be blamed on the Syrian government, as the justification for a full-scale invasion of Syria, in order to attempt regime change in Damascus.

But the questions I would have to ask about such a scenario are:

1. Why would al-Assad do this when his troops are winning against ISIS on the Ground?!?

2. Weren't Syria's chemical weapons completely destroyed under a Russian brokered, and UN-supervised program several years ago?!?

Of course, such an invasion most probably means war with Russia, but what does the American Deep State care about the good of We the People?!? The short answer is, absolutely nothing.

They have their elaborate bunkers, and top of the line survival gear in hand; the rest of us can just die of radiation sickness, and they won't give a damn.

This... is officially insane, and the fact that the US government collectively thinks, for one millisecond, that the American people would believe this codswallop, demonstrates that they have learned utterly nothing from having lied this country into the the military misadventures which are still with us, Afghanistan and Iraq.

Jun 27 10:57

Hersh’s new Syria revelations buried from view

Paradoxically, over the past decade, as social media has created a more democratic platform for information dissemination, the corporate media has grown ever more fearful of a truly independent figure like Hersh. The potential reach of his stories could now be enormously magnified by social media. As a result, he has been increasingly marginalised and his work denigrated. By denying him the credibility of a “respectable” mainstream platform, he can be dismissed for the first time in his career as a crank and charlatan. A purveyor of fake news.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Mr. Hersh, should you want to take us up on it, you would always be welcome to post your articles here at WRH.

Mike and I have a great deal of respect for your work, over the years, and understand, full well, the courage it takes not to ape the government's "party line" when there is a specific agenda they wish to accomplish, and the consequences of "not playing along", even when such an agenda is 100% fact free.

Jun 27 10:38

House Armed Services Committee Unveils $696.5 Billion Military Spending Bill

Just days after committee chair Mac Thornberry (R – TX) announced his intention to unveil a $640 billion military spending bill, the House Armed Services Committee actually unveiled a $696.5 billion bill, which you’ll notice is quite a bit more, but which is also being presented as a “cut” from the previous announcement.

The imagined cut is based on the idea that the $640 billion would’ve added quite a bit of funding for Overseas Contingency Operations (OCO), and the new bill already includes $75 billion in OCO, which they’re presenting as meaning the bill is only $621.5 billion, despite the OCO money being very real, and also including substantial amounts that’ll be spent on things not related to overseas operations.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

This government does not necessarily need to spend more money; they need to spend money for our military more intelligently.

This should translate into the death of cost over-runs which are absorbed by taxpayers; the ending of problem-plagued programs like the F-35, with the companies like Lockheed Martin absorbing the costs of their failures, after a certain point, from corporate funding, and not taxpayers' funding.

The failure of weapons to perform as advertised should be treated as a form of corporate treason against this country.

Please don't get me wrong; as a Christian pacifist activist, who is constantly exhorting her government to use hard-won, moral negotiations as the way to resolve geopolitical disputes, I abhor war as a methodology for resolving disputes.

That being said, if the civilian leadership is going to use war to pursue its aims, our military deserve weapons that work. China and Russia are spending far less on their military outlays, but are winding up with weapons which do, and will work, very efficiently.

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