WAR/DRAFT/VETERAN AFFAIRS | WHAT REALLY HAPPENED


WAR/DRAFT/VETERAN AFFAIRS

Mar 29 10:52

'Russians Will Pay a Price': US Mulls Response to Moscow Over Venezuela

Earlier, the White House criticised the arrival of Russian military aircraft in Caracas, with Vice President Mike Pence calling it an "unwelcome provocation". US President Donald Trump, in turn, demanded that Russia "get out" of Venezuela, while at the same time did not exclude the use of military force by the US in the country.

US Special Representative for Venezuela Elliott Abrams announced on 29 March that Secretary of State Mike Pompeo would soon come up with a response to last week's arrival of Russian military planes in Venezuela.

"We have a very nice options paper of the various things that can be done in US-Russia relations. There are a lot of things we can do in economic terms, in terms of sanctions. There is a lot of things that are on the list. So, The Russians will pay a price for this", he said.

Mar 29 09:49

CODEPINK Ranks the 2020 Presidential Candidates on War, Peace and Military Spending

So what hope is there that one of the parade of Democrats seeking the presidency in 2020 could be a real “peace candidate”? Could one of them bring an end to these wars and prevent new ones? Walk back the brewing Cold War and arms race with Russia and China? Downsize the US military and its all-consuming budget? Promote diplomacy and a commitment to international law?

Mar 29 09:29

STRATCOM Commander Wants to Put Low Yield Nuclear Missiles on U.S. Submarines

If the U.S. opts to develop low-yield nuclear missiles, expect the Navy to deploy these weapons as part of the nation’s undersea nuclear deterrent, the commander of U.S. Strategic Command told lawmakers Thursday.

If developed, the U.S. low-yield nuclear weapons would fall within limits set by the New START nuclear arms treaty, Air Force Gen. John Hyten, commander of U.S. Strategic Command, told the House Armed Services strategic forces subcommittee. New START, signed in 2010 by the U.S. and the Russian Federation, caps the number of nuclear warheads each nation deploys.

“We’ll actually remove big weapons from the submarines and put small ones in,” Hyten said. “We’re going to have still the same number weapons, they just going to give us a smaller yield. But we think that smaller yield actually gives us a better chance to deter our primary adversary.”

Mar 29 09:28

War crimes case expands to SEAL Team 6

Despite a lull in court-martial proceedings against Special Warfare Operator Chief Edward “Eddie” Gallagher for allegedly stabbing to death an Islamic State prisoner, the case has expanded to target members of SEAL Team 6.

Search warrant documents and email messages from Naval Criminal Investigative Service agents leaked to Navy Times reveal the seizure of cell phones and electronic communications beginning in early February, allegedly to prove that Gallagher urged fellow SEALs at the Naval Special Warfare Development Group — or DEVGRU — to obstruct justice or retaliate against junior sailors who ratted him out for war crimes.

The documents and emails appear to support a theory put forward by Gallagher’s defense attorneys that military prosecutors are going after what they call a “Mean Girls" clique of special operators.

Mar 29 09:27

Gay dating app Grindr declared threat to military personnel by US government

A Chinese gaming company has decided to sell the popular LGBTQ dating app Grindr LLC after a U.S. national security panel declared the app to be a threat to service members, Reuters first reported.

Beijing Kunlun Tech Co Ltd, which has owned the California-based dating app since 2016, decided to sever ties at the behest of the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States, or CFIUS, which pointed to major concerns over personal data of app users — notably military and intelligence personnel — being made publicly available.

Grindr, which labels itself “the largest social networking app for gay, bi, trans, and queer people,” came under intense heat last year when it was revealed that the app was releasing the HIV statuses of users without their permission.

Mar 29 08:18

Trump Says Google CEO "Totally Committed To The US Military"

Google CEO Sundar Pichai probably would have preferred to keep Wednesday's meeting with President Trump quiet, but the president had other plans.

In a series of tweets Wednesday afternoon, Trump said his meeting with Pichai had gone well, and that the Google CEO is "totally committed to the US Military, not the Chinese Military." He added in a second tweet that the two had discussed "political fairness and various things Google can do for our country" (presumably Google's practice of discriminating against conservative news organizations, part of the company's crusade against "fake news", as well as its active support for Hillary Clinton during the 2016 election)

Mar 29 08:14

As South China Sea Showdown Heats Up, US Marines Revisit Island-Hopping Strategy

With relations between China and Western powers in the South China Sea showing little sign of cooling down, the US Marine Corps has decided to refresh its island-hopping skills, practicing storming an island in Japan last week and on the California coast this week.

Several USMC units "attacked" the island of Iejima last week, establishing a beachhead, seizing the island's airfield and shuttling in heavier assets to strike more enemy positions. Iejima is one of the Ryukyu Islands and sits just a few kilometers off the coast of Okinawa. The small island houses a US Marine Corps auxiliary facility.

Mar 29 08:13

Two US B-52 Bombers Train with Japan Air Forces Over East China Sea

Two B-52H Stratofortress bombers with the US Air Force recently flew over the East China Sea for an "integration training" mission with the US Navy and the Japan Air Self Defense Force (Koku Jieitai).

A statement released by the US Pacific Air Force (PACAF) last week indicates that the two B-52 bombers departed from the US Andersen Air Force Base in Guam, and that they trained with F-15C Eagles assigned to the Kadena Air Base in Japan. The mission took place March 20. Additional details regarding the operation were not provided by the service.

Training missions and patrols of the contested waters are not unheard of, having become a regular exercise by American forces. The US' use of bombers in the region has been going on for more than 10 years as part of its Continuous Bomber Presence, a mission Washington says is "in support of a free and open Indo-Pacific."

Mar 29 08:01

US says it won't rule out nuclear first strike, because allies wouldn't trust it otherwise

A Pentagon official has said that the US will retain the right to carry out a nuclear strike in response to a conventional attack. A 'no-first-use' policy would erode US allies' belief that they are protected, he said.
Washington has no plans to reverse its policy of "no first use" of nukes, which means it can bomb its adversaries with nuclear weapons under "extreme circumstances," Deputy Undersecretary of Defense David Trachtenberg said in his prepared remarks to the Senate Armed Service Committee hearing on Thursday.

Trachtenberg claimed that if the US changes its take on the issue, which he described as "constructive ambiguity," it "would undermine US extended deterrence and damage the health of our alliances because it would call into question the assurance that the United States would come to the defense of allies in extreme circumstances." This uncertainty might prompt these countries to arm themselves with nuclear weapons, he said.

Mar 28 15:01

US Forces-Korea Warns It’s Ill-Prepared for Collapse of Diplomacy With DPRK

The top US commander in South Korea told Congress Wednesday that US forces on the peninsula wouldn’t be ready if diplomacy between the US and DPRK suddenly collapsed and the military standoff returned. His fears reflected a Western belief that Pyongyang is withdrawing from denuclearization plans, but in Korea, the situation isn’t so clear.

US Army Gen. Robert Abrams, the commander of US Forces Korea, told the House Armed Services Committee Wednesday that, so long as the diplomatic push for denuclearization on the Korean Peninsula continues, his forces have enough intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance resources to maintain an adequate defense of South Korea and detect an attack from the North. However, if things got worse and the atmosphere suddenly returned to the hostile tension of the past, "then our stance, our posture is not adequate to provide us an unblinking eye to give us early warning and indicators."

Webmaster's Commentary: 

IF true, this has to be remedied, and quickly; having some actual, sane, and moral diplomacy would probably help.

The North Koreans gave on a few things on their side, but US foreign policy here seems to have wanted to give nothing in return, which is a really bad place to be, and particularly dealing with the reality that the concept of "face", or personal reputation, is critically important, in Asian cultures.

President Trump's "My way or the highway" attitude may have worked well for him in the corporate sphere, but in terms of face-to-face negotiations, it cannot and will not, work.

His approach to North Korea, has been an epic fail because of that, and I frankly think we may well be on the knife-edge of a military confrontation with North Korea (which most probably means military confrontation against China) if these negotiations cannot be salvaged.

Mar 28 14:41

Guaido To Launch Venezuela-wide "Tactical Action" To Topple Maduro

Is Venezuela heating up again or is this just more desperation setting in for the Juan Guaido-led opposition after recent failed efforts to gem up popular support for an anti-Maduro coup?

The US recognized "Interim President" has announced plans for his supporters to launch "tactical actions" starting next week as part of his "Operation Freedom" to overthrow President Nicolas Maduro. The opposition is now telegraphing their regime change maneuvers, in what appears more of a desperate strategy to maintain external and international pressure and visibility on the continuing political crisis in the country, lately felt in a series of major nation-wide electricity outages.

Guaido said via Twitter that such tactical actions are to begin April 6, which will involve "freedom cells" set up across the country rising up in mass protest when the order is given.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Forgive me, but I am not holding my breath that Guaido's "revolution" will have a ghost of a chance, against Russia's in-country troops here, plus the Russian S-300 defensive missiles.

And why the hell is he broadcasting this, so that Maduro's government knows precisely when and where these "tactical actions" will happen?!?

And you have to remember; not a lot of Venezuelans really like this guy, and know precisely how this horrific condition in their country was made to happen, primarily because of the US's crippling sanctions, and theft of Venezuela's money in other banks around the world.

Mar 28 06:38

LIDER-CLASS DESTROYER – A NEW FACE OF RUSSIAN SURFACE FLEET

As was recently revealed, Moscow is planning to build two units of project 23560 (i.e. Lider-class nuclear-powered destroyers) by the end of the 2020s. Preliminary design of the project is complete and was accomplished by the Severnoye Design Bureau. Research and development work and planning for the construction phase are ongoing.

In accordance with the state rearmament program for 2018-2027, the structural design work on Lider-class destroyers must begin in 2021. According to prior assessments, construction of one ship would require approximately seven years.

It is planned to float off the lead ship of the class and a first serial destroyer by the end of the 2020s. Every destroyer will reportedly cost about RUB100 billion (about USD1.5 billion).

Lider is an ocean-going guided missile destroyer. It is smaller than Russian Kirov-class battlecruisers, but larger than US Zumwalt-class guided missile destroyers.

Mar 27 19:20

United States Space Command Commander Nominated

The president has nominated to the Senate Gen John W. “Jay” Raymond as the commander of United States Space Command.

If confirmed, Raymond will lead the soon-to-be established USSPACECOM, which will focus on conducting all joint space warfighting operations and ensuring the combat readiness of global forces.

Mar 27 13:47

Russia must get out of Venezuela, all options open - Trump

US President Donald Trump has warned that Russia must get out of Venezuela. Two planeloads of Russian troops are currently in the Latin American country under the terms of a 2001 cooperation treaty.
Speaking at the White House, Trump also warned that “all options are open” when it comes to getting Russia out of Venezuela.

Mar 27 12:31

Faulty Propulsion System, Elevators Delay Delivery of $13B USS Ford Again

Already the most expensive warship in US history with its hefty $13 billion price tag, the nuclear-powered aircraft carrier USS Gerald R. Ford (CVN-78) is likely to continue being a burden on the US Navy thanks to its ever-growing list of technical issues.

The troubled carrier, which began undergoing its post-shakedown availability (PSA) period in July 2018, was originally expected to complete its 12-month review following at-sea trials in July 2019. However, that's no longer the case.

James Geurts, US Navy assistant secretary for research, development and acquisition, told the House Seapower and Projection Forces Subcommittee on Tuesday that meeting the July deadline was no longer possible, and that it was more likely that the vessel would be ready to go in October 2019.

Mar 27 11:16

Why Did US Defence Giant Northrop Grumman Test 75 YO Nazi Proto-Stealth Bomber?

In late 2018, aerospace and defence giant Northrop Grumman passed a development review of its B-21 program, a secretive flying-wing strategic bomber design meant to succeed the B-2 Spirit. However, as it turns out, the company has also been tinkering with some unique designs developed in the 1940s by a certain central European country.

In September 2008, in preparation for a 2009 National Geographic documentary called 'Hitler's Stealth Fighter', a team of engineers from Northrop Grumman dusted off the last surviving airframe from a Horten Ho 229 V3 prototype Nazi bomber design at a Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum storage facility in Maryland to engage in testing of the aircraft's stealth properties.

Building a mockup of the aircraft using "modern techniques," including stereo-lithography, engineers were able to simulate its performance against period British Chain Home radar network components, designed to help ward off Luftwaffe attacks.

Mar 27 10:45

RUSSIAN ELECTION MEDDLING.

Teeth gnashing, wringing hands, wailing and lamenting will not document Russian Election Meddling in America. Hard evidence seems elusive, and if there was some meddling, it was inconsequential and did not determine the outcome of the 2016 election.

On the other hand, America, in opposition to the the rest of the world (save Israel), has set up a puppet by the name of Juan Guaido in Venezuela. Hey, isn’t that election meddling? How about trying to throw Assad out of office in Syria and setting up and financing his opposition (ISIS)? America has initiated proxy wars all over the world in order to topple legitimate governments and install their own “Yes” men. There’s the real collusion!

Mar 27 07:20

America's Generals Have Learned Nothing From Our Failed Wars

“Veni, Vidi, Vici,” boasted Julius Caesar, one of history’s great military captains. “I came, I saw, I conquered.”

Then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton echoed that famed saying when summing up the Obama administration’s military intervention in Libya in 2011 — with a small alteration. “We came, we saw, he died,” she said with a laugh about the killing of Muammar Gaddafi, that country’s autocratic leader. Note what she left out, though: the “vici” or victory part. And how right she was to do so, since Washington’s invasions, occupations, and interventions in Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya, and elsewhere in this century have never produced anything faintly like a single decisive and lasting victory.

Mar 27 07:11

Pentagon to Assemble Nuclear Rocket in Orbit by 2020

According to the report, the Defence Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) has requested at least $10 million for its Reactor on a Rocket (ROAR) programme.

The Defence Advanced Research Projects Agency intends to assemble a nuclear thermal propulsion (NTP) system in orbit, Aviation Week reported, citing the Pentagon's 2020 budget.

"The program will initially develop the use of additive manufacturing approaches to print NTP fuel elements… In addition, the program will investigate on-orbit assembly techniques (AM) to safely assemble the individual core element subassemblies into a full demonstration system configuration, and will perform a technology demonstration", the budget document says.

Mar 27 06:57

Where’s the Outrage over US Imperial Wars?

Days of protests in America against Trump’s entry into America order smack of dark forces manipulating and agitating against him no matter what he does or doesn’t do.

Denigration of Muslims is longstanding in America, taken to a fever pitch post-9/11, wrongfully portraying them as gun-toting terrorists, using them as a pretext to smash one country after another, responsible for appalling levels of carnage and human misery?

Where’s the outrage over an issue dwarfing all others? Why aren’t people furious about imperial madness, possible nuclear war if not curbed?

Why aren’t they protesting against bloated military spending and America’s empire of bases – used as launching pads for more wars?

Where’s the outrage over mega-corporations ruling the world, exploiting it for profits, harming millions, despoiling the environment?

Mar 26 18:27

Mike Cernovich Documentary: Blood Money

How Qatar bought off the entire D.C. media establishment.

Watch before it gets removed!

Mar 26 16:51

Gaza rehearses for 1 million at the fence next week, as Israel kills two more men

At the end of nearly 1,000 yards of newly-grown spring grassy turf, a renewed barbed-wire border fence rises three meters up, in anticipation of a million person march next week between Gaza protesters and their well-known antagonist snipers.

A week before the first anniversary of the great March of Return, organizers have pledged larger than usual demonstrations. However, their preparations appeared powerless in yesterday’s renewed protests at Malaka, eastern Gaza City, when hails of Israeli live ammunition and gas canisters killed two Palestinian men and wounded 26 others taking part in weekly demonstrations along the fortified Israel-Gaza border.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

I am hoping and praying that the Palestinian children will be left home, in the care of a responsible adult; because, I could almost bet you, it will be the children who will be hit first.

Mar 26 12:50

'F-35 is Not Ready to Fly', US Defence Companies 'Buy Politicians' – Journalist

The US Department of Defence recently opened an investigation about reports that acting Defence Secretary Patrick Shanahan has been favouring Boeing, where he worked for more than three decades, at the expense of competitors.

"The Department of Defence Office of Inspector General has decided to investigate complaints we recently received that Acting Secretary Patrick Shanahan allegedly took actions to promote his former employer, Boeing, and disparage its competitors, allegedly in violation of ethics rules", Defence Department Inspector General spokesperson Dwrena Allen said, as quoted by Politico.

Mar 26 12:31

U.S. calls Russia deployment of planes to Venezuela 'reckless escalation'

The United States on Monday accused Russia of “reckless escalation” of the situation in Venezuela by deploying military planes and personnel to the crisis-stricken South American nation that Washington has hit with crippling sanctions.

The Russian planes and military personnel arrived outside the Venezuelan capital Caracas on Saturday, according to local media reports, two months after the Trump administration disavowed President Nicolas Maduro.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

This would be hysterically comical, except for the hard reality people are dying due to shortages, and hospitals had to close, because the electricity was down.

Putin has made himself very clear, here; and DC moved far too late in the process, to prevent the arrival of Russian troops and weapons, so the only thing the US government can do, is bellicosely deny that the US government had anything to do with the current situation in Venezuela

Mar 26 12:23

PENTAGON SAYS ALL OF GOOGLE’S WORK ON DRONES IS EXEMPT FROM THE FREEDOM OF INFORMATION ACT

IN SEPTEMBER 2017, Aileen Black wrote an email to her colleagues at Google. Black, who led sales to the U.S. government, worried that details of the company’s work to help the military guide lethal drones would become public through the Freedom of Information Act. “We will call tomorrow to reinforce the need to keep Google under the radar,” Black wrote.

According to a Pentagon memo signed last year, however, no one at Google needed worry: All 5,000 pages of documents about Google’s work on the drone effort, known as Project Maven, are barred from public disclosure, because they constitute “critical infrastructure security information.”

One government transparency advocate said the memo is part of a recent wave of federal decisions that keep sensitive documents secret on that same basis — thus allowing agencies to quickly deny document requests.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

So, now we know, incontrovertibly, that the unholy triumverate, Google, Twitter, and Facebook, have become the "4th arm" of the US government, and that is the arm named "surveillance".

Mar 26 12:17

Report: Saudi Airstrikes Kill at Least 50 Houthis in Yemen’s Maarib Province

According to the Saudi-backed Yemeni government, a series of Saudi-led airstrikes targeted the Maarib Province on Monday, killing at least 50 members of the Shi’ite Houthi movement.

The attacks centered on Serwah District, the last district in oil-rich Maarib that is under the control of the Houthis. It’s unclear who the targeted Houthis were, and there is no report of substantial fighting in Maarib recently.

This once again reflects the general Saudi military strategy in Yemen, which is to fall back heavily on an air war. Using airstrikes anywhere and everywhere has often meant a substantial increase in civilian casualties.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

I wonder if Saudi citizens are "entertained" with a "body count" in Yemen on their daily news, stating how many Yemenis have been massacred in this bloody genocide; in fact, I am rather amazed that the Butcher of Yemen (aka Prince Bin Salman), has not decided to carpet bomb the place and "get it over with."

But in light of the futility of the last 4 years of fighting (during which the US military has aided and abetted Saudi war crimes in Yemen), it will most probably be his next option.

It is an unhappy realization, but the people, and countries with the money to spend, generally murder who they want, with impunity, and get away with it; Saudi Arabia, the Unhinged, Surveilled state of America, and Israel, all fall into those ranks.

Mar 26 11:11

Trump Admin Proposes New $8 Billion Loan Fund to Subsidize Foreign Weapon Sales

The Trump administration is pushing for the creation of an $8 billion loan fund in order to boost weapons sales to foreign allies, according to a summary of the administration’s draft budget for next year, which was made public on March 11. The loan program was first pitched in the early days of the administration but failed to gain support from Congress.

Mar 26 09:03

MAJOR: Bomb Explodes At U.S Military Base In Japan – Terrorism Or Resistance?

An unknown man set off an explosion at the American Camp Foster base in Okinawa, the Japanese news outlet NHK reported. According to the local police and the American command, the unknown man cut the protective net and entered the territory on Sunday evening.

After gaining entry to the U.S military base, he blew up a gas cylinder on the second floor at the door of the office of the Okinawa office of the Ministry of Defense of Japan. FRN has no information on whether this explosion was used to open the door, or whether he gained entrance, or for what purpose.

Mar 25 10:33

Pompeo Demands Moscow "Cease Unconstructive Behavior" In Venezuela 

As we predicted a number of times before, a proxy war between Russia and the United States appears now heating up in Venezuela — this after over the weekend Russia sent a military transport plane filled with Russian troops commanded by First Deputy Commander-in-Chief of the Land Forces of Russia Gen. Vasily Tonkoshkurov, which landed in Caracas Saturday. We also reported the major development this morning that new satellite images reveal a major deployment of S-300 air defense missile systems to a key airbase south of Caracas.

Russia's highly visible deployment of a small troop contingency along with a reported 35 tons of cargo has resulted in a direct and firm response from Washington as on Monday morning the US Secretary of State called on Russia to “cease its unconstructive behavior”.

According to Reuters Pompeo conveyed the message directly via a phone call with his Russian counterpart Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Mikey, Mikey, MIKEY!!

Wake up and smell those tons of reserve heavy crude being rudely pulled away from the US by way of a Russian "military presence" in Venezuela, invited by its LEGITIMATE LEADERSHIP, UNDER MADURO.

And if you thought about pro-actively sending US troops to fend off Russian troops here, in the immortal words of my late Grandmother, "The horse is already out of the barn, which is what she would say if a situation was already out of control, and couldn't be fixed.

If you were even thinking/fantasising about a decap strike on Caracas, it is too bloody late now.

So what are you going to do now, just sit there and whine about missed opportunities, because you waited too long to do them?!?

And your telling Lavrov (who I consider one of the adults in the room in geopolitics) that "... the United States and regional countries will not stand idly by as Russia exacerbates tensions in Venezuela."

Was that ever a rich "pot...kettle...black" moment for you, considering all that the US has done to instigate regime change in this country; and sir, your options just got royally minimized here.

It is almost painful to see how many chess moves ahead Russia's President Putin is, ahead of US foreign policy.

Mar 25 10:21

Vietnam’s Struggle to Overcome the Legacy of US Bombs

The recent Hanoi summit attended by US President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un thrust Vietnam into the global spotlight; a rare moment of publicity in the modern era for a country which dominated the world’s attention through the unfolding horrors of war in the 1960s and 1970s.

Yet the hosts were left disappointed when the summit collapsed, after failed talks on de-nuclearization prompted the US delegation to depart early for Washington. Five decades earlier the US had been in no rush to leave despite a similar sense of impending mission failure, instead sending thousands more troops and sticking around to bomb Vietnam for eight years from 1965-1973. While the summit leaves no lasting impression, the legacy of unexploded bombs and toxic contamination from the war remains.

Mar 25 10:16

US NAVY TO IMPROVE ITS VERSATILE SM-6 MISSILE WITH LONGER RANGE AND HIGHER SPEED

The US Navy is to boost its versatile SM-6 missile with longer range and higher speed, the Drive reported.

The SM-6 is a good example of a versatile weapon, which also proved that simply an overhaul of an existing system can achieve some significant results.

“The missile can shoot down air-breathing threats like aircraft and cruise missiles, it can swat incoming ballistic missiles in the terminal phases of flight, it can attack sea targets, and it even has a latent land attack potential. It is also network enabled and can engage targets well beyond the sensor reach of its launch platform using telemetry data-linked from a third-party platform, like a jet fighter. It does all this over long ranges, reaching out over 150 miles from its vertical launch cell aboard American destroyers and cruisers. Now, according to 2020 budget request documents, this versatile missile is set to get upsized for considerably more range and speed, and that is a very big deal.”

Mar 25 08:56

Ari Fleischer Lied, and People Died

Ari Fleischer, the former White House Press Secretary under President George W. Bush, ignited a firestorm of controversy Wednesday when, while commenting on the 16th anniversary of the U.S invasion of Iraq, he sought to defend the reputation of his boss when it came to the veracity of the claims about Iraqi Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD) that underpinned President Bush’s case for war.

“The Iraq war began sixteen years ago tomorrow,” Fleischer tweeted on March 19. “There is a myth about the war that I have been meaning to set straight for years. After no WMDs were found, the left claimed ‘Bush lied. People died.’ This accusation itself is a lie. It’s time to put it to rest.”

Webmaster's Commentary: 

BULL BISCUITS!

Mar 25 08:46

Now for Confrontation in Space

Which leads us to General “Fighting Joe” Dunford, who at his Senate hearing for appointment as Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff said “my assessment today, Senator, is that Russia presents the greatest threat to our national security.” In October 2018 he reiterated that “the Russian challenge is not isolated to the plains of Europe. It is a global one” requiring the armed forces of the United States “to be able to project power to an area... and then once we’re there we’ve got to be able to freely manoeuvre across all domains... sea, air, land, space, and cyberspace.”

Naturally he didn’t mention that at the very time he uttered his confrontational challenges there was close cooperation in air, land and space between the US and Russia whose astronauts were “able to freely manoeuvre” in harmony, adding to world knowledge and engendering trust by jointly conducting research projects in the International Space Station.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

War in orbit is a BIG MISTAKE!

Mar 25 08:36

Whose Blood, Whose Treasure?

“Veni, Vidi, Vici,” boasted Julius Caesar, one of history’s great military captains. “I came, I saw, I conquered.”

Then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton echoed that famed saying when summing up the Obama administration’s military intervention in Libya in 2011 — with a small alteration. “We came, we saw, he died,” she said with a laugh about the killing of Muammar Gaddafi, that country’s autocratic leader. Note what she left out, though: the “vici” or victory part. And how right she was to do so, since Washington’s invasions, occupations, and interventions in Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya, and elsewhere in this century have never produced anything faintly like a single decisive and lasting victory.

Mar 24 12:20

16 Years Later, How the Press That Sold the Iraq War Got Away With It

The myths had enormous utility to the working press, whose gargantuan errors have been re-cast as honest mistakes of judgment. A lot of the people who made those mistakes are still occupying prominent positions, their credibility undamaged thanks to a new legend best articulated by New Yorker editor David Remnick, who later scoffed, “Nobody got that story completely right.”

Nobody except the record number of people who marched against the war on February 15, 2003 — conservative estimates placed it between six and ten million worldwide (I marched in D.C.). Every one of those people was way ahead of Remnick.

Mar 24 09:55

Russia Gives US Red Line On Venezuela

At a high-level meeting in Rome this week, it seems that Russia reiterated a grave warning to the US – Moscow will not tolerate American military intervention to topple the Venezuelan government with whom it is allied.

Meanwhile, back in Washington DC, President Donald Trump was again bragging that the military option was still on the table, in his press conference with Brazilian counterpart Jair Bolsonaro. Trump is bluffing or not yet up to speed with being apprised of Russia’s red line.

The meeting in the Italian capital between US “special envoy” on Venezuelan affairs Elliot Abrams and Russia’s deputy foreign minister Sergei Ryabkov had an air of urgency in its arrangement. The US State Department announced the tête-à-tête only three days beforehand. The two officials also reportedly held their two-hour discussions in a Rome hotel, a venue indicating ad hoc arrangement.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

I am hoping and praying, that President Trump "sees the light" of non-intervention in this situation.

But if he does not, and Abrams, Bolton, and Pompeo urge him to go into Venezuela, guns blazing, this country will most likely find itself in a war of attrition in a jungle environment, in which our military does not generally fare quite well (Anyone at the White House remember the Vietnam War?!? Thought not.)

Mar 24 09:18

Killing for Credibility: A Look Back at the 1999 NATO Air War on Serbia

This month marks the 20th anniversary of Operation Allied Force, NATO’s 78-day air war against Yugoslavia. It was a war waged as much against Serbian civilians – hundreds of whom perished – as it was against Slobodan Miloševi?’s forces, and it was a campaign of breathtaking hypocrisy and selective outrage. More than anything, it was a war that by President Bill Clinton’s own admission was fought for the sake of NATO’s credibility.

Mar 24 09:16

Veterans Demand Congress End the Forever Wars

Antiwar activists gathered on March 19, 2019, outside 26 Federal Plaza in lower Manhattan for a rally on the 16th anniversary of the invasion of Iraq. The rally was followed by a march on several military recruiting offices along Chambers Street and to Borough of Manhattan Community College to oppose the United States's endless cycle of war and militarism.

Mar 23 19:03

The Truth about Syria's #GolanHeights and #GenieEnergy

The Truth about Syria's #GolanHeights and #GenieEnergy
- The link Trump, Kushner, the Golan and Genie energy oil
- The history of the Golan
- The history of Israel - The link between Israel and ISIS

Mar 23 10:25

MADURO: US WITHHOLDING $5BN OF MEDICAL SUPPLIES IN ‘CRIMINAL’ MEASURE

The US government is withholding US $5 billion which was meant for the purchase of medicines and raw materials used in medical production, President Nicolas Maduro claimed Wednesday.

Speaking from Miranda State, Maduro denounced that US authorities “have ‘kidnapped’ US $5 billion [in] one of the most criminal, brutal, fascist economic measures which has been seen in the economic history of the world.” “Trump is the person responsible,” he added.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

This was a logical, if not horrific, thing Trump has done here; after all, very ill people in a country cannot fight against its overthrow.

Mar 23 10:09

FLASHBACK - Death by defoilant, US war on the environment

“Not only crop destruction, but US policies of extensive bombing, defoliation, and relocation of people from the countryside seem clearly to fall within the definition of crimes against humanity and war crimes,” wrote the Stanford Biology Group in a report entitled The Destruction of Indochina.

As part of a deliberate campaign of environmental destruction during its war against Vietnam, the US sprayed the countryside with herbicides containing carcinogenic chemicals to destroy tropical forest foliage and agricultural crops. The objectives of this diabolical program, which perhaps should be called “death by defoliant,” were threefold: first, to deprive the Vietnamese resistance fighters of the National Liberation Front (NLF) of hiding places and cover; second, to starve them into surrender by wiping out their food supply; and third, to drive rural peasants to urban areas controlled by the US-backed regime in an attempt to decimate popular support for the NLF.

Mar 23 08:30

PLYWOOD SUPPLY DRONE FOR US MARINES IS UNDERGOING FLIGHT TESTS

The LG-1K is developed by Logistic Gliders Inc under contract with DARPA and the U.S. Marine Corps Warfighting Laboratory. The plywood and aluminum drone is expected to be a low-cost decision capable of being released from fixed-wing aircraft or helicopter: MV-22 and CV-22 Osprey tiltrotor aircraft, KC-130, C-130, and C-17 transports, and MH-60, UH-60, CH-53, and CH-47 helicopters.

The drone is 3.9 m long and has a 8.3m wingspan. The LG-1K can carry up to 725 kg of supplies. Logistics Gliders anticipates the cost of each drone at approximately $4,500 to $11,000.

Mar 23 06:29

SELCO: What It’s Really Like to Live in a City Under Siege

Selco shares the horrifying reality of what it was like to live in a city under siege during the Balkan War. (WARNING: DISTURBING CONTENT)

Mar 22 15:32

US Promised No INF-Banned Missiles, But Pentagon’s 2020 Budget Has Several

Just weeks after the US unilaterally terminated its Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty with Russia, but promised not to develop new weapons that had been banned by the treaty, the Pentagon has proposed in its 2020 budget several new missile programs.

On February 2, 2019, US President Donald Trump formally suspended Washington's compliance with the treaty, penned by US and Soviet leaders in 1987, and Russia followed suit. The treaty banned land-based missiles with ranges of 310 to 620 miles and 620 to 3,420 miles, although it didn't cover air-launched or sea-launched missiles.

Mar 22 10:55

U.S. Special Operations: The New Face of America’s War Machine

With the possible U.S. military withdrawal from Syria in the news on a daily basis, the mainstream media has been quick to parrot the DOD’s claim that 2,000 troops, mostly special operations forces, are to be withdrawn from the country. Although the total number of U.S. special operators deployed to Syria may have approached as many as 5,000, the current headlines have not mentioned that the United States has special operations units deployed not just in Syria, but in a majority of the nations of the world. Over the past seventeen years, the forces at the disposal of U.S. Special Operations Command (SOCOM) have grown exponentially, more than doubling in size in numbers, with a budget that has also expanded four-fold in that same period of time.

Mar 22 09:18

Navy routinely buys defective ships

For the U.S. Navy, buying warships that are defective, unfinished or both has become the norm.

The habit is expensive, dangerous and leaves overworked sailors to deal with faulty ships in need of repair from day one — yet it has escaped sufficient scrutiny in Washington.

Contrary to the Navy’s own policy, and despite spending nearly $16 billion on average in each of the last 30 years on new warships, most U.S. combat vessels are delivered from private shipbuilders with flaws significant enough to impair the vessels’ ability to perform missions or to keep crews safe, according to recent audits conducted for Congress.

On top of these identified glitches, still more systems unexpectedly break down on ship after ship shortly after the Navy starts operating them.

Mar 22 09:10

Marines Seize Pacific Island As Training For War With China

The 31st U.S. Marine Expeditionary Unit (31st MEU) seized a tiny island and airfield with special operations airmen and soldiers as part of a new island-hopping strategy.

Last week, 31st MEU, backed by the 3rd Marine Division, 3rd Marine Logistics Group and 1st Marine Aircraft Wing, members of the Air Force 353rd Special Operations Group, and Army soldiers with 1st Battalion, 1st Special Forces Group, conducted a series of simulated military exercises attacking and seizing Ie Shima Island located off the northwest coast of Okinawa Island in the East China Sea, reported Task Purpose.

The new military strategy, known as Expeditionary Advanced Base (EAB) Operations, will allow Marine units to seize, establish, and operate multiple small bases across the Pacific Ocean, a tactic that will be beneficial in a high-end fight with China.

Mar 22 08:14

Pompeo says Hezbollah, Hamas and Houthis present risks to Middle East stability

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, on Wednesday, described Hezbollah as a risk to Middle East stability and conferred with Israel about the Iranian-backed Lebanese group ahead of a trip to Beirut. Pompeo has been on a regional tour to promote the Trump administration’s policy against Iran.

Mar 22 08:12

300 US soldiers arrive in Germany as Washington tests rapid-deployment strategy in Europe

More than 300 US soldiers arrived in Germany on Thursday from their base in Texas in the first test of a new American strategy to rapidly deploy US-based troops to Europe, AP reported. The soldiers, from the 2nd Armored Brigade Combat Team of the 1st Armored Division, based in Fort Bliss, were part of a group of 1,500 to arrive this week in Berlin via charter aircraft.

Mar 22 08:09

World countries blast US on Golan, Syria vows to liberate Israeli occupied territory

The Arab League, Russia, Iran and Turkey have strongly warned the US after President Donald Trump declared Thursday that he will recognize Syria's Golan Heights as Israeli territory.

The strategic highlands have been under the Israeli occupation since 1967, but Trump's abrupt declaration a day after US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo's visit to Israel brings the dispute to a boiling point.

Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan said on Friday Trump's statement has brought the region to the edge of a new crisis.

In a speech at a meeting of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) in Istanbul, Erdogan said: "We cannot allow the legitimization of the occupation of the Golan Heights."

Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif expressed shock at Trump's plan.

Mar 22 07:57

Bolton says Trump ‘very serious’ about ‘all options’ as Venezuela dismantles ‘terrorist cell’

Donald Trump is not kidding when he says “all options” to topple Maduro are open, National Security Adviser John Bolton said, as the Venezuelan government busted wannabe president Juan Guaido’s aide for running a terrorist cell.
“President Trump himself has been clear on this point on any number of occasions when he says all options are on the table. I think people need to understand and believe that; he’s very serious about it,” Bolton told Breitbart.

Mar 21 14:30

US Navy’s F-35 jet allegedly in serious trouble: report

The U.S. Navy’s F-35C stealth fighter jet is not ready for combat-related activity, despite a proclamation from the commander of the U.S. Naval Air Forces about the aircraft being “ready for operations, ready for combat and ready to win,” the Task and Purpose publication reported this week.

According to Task and Purpose, the testing data that was obtained by the Project On Government Oversight (POGO) indicates that the F-35 variant’s “fully mission capable” rate — a key measure of a military aircraft’s readiness — collapsed from 12% in October 2016 to zero in December 2017 before remaining flat through 2018.

In addition to the Navy’s troubles, the Marine Corps’ F-35B has also experienced a lot of problems, Task and Purpose said, citing a POGO report.

Mar 21 13:27

Trump Tweet on British Opens Spring Offensive Against the Coup

March 20, 2019 - It has become entirely clear over the past 24 hours that the President and his defenders are on an all out offensive ahead of the release of the Mueller report, which many state is coming very soon. The President opened this campaign by attacking John McCain as part of the Russiagate fraud against him and went on to attack the British instigators and sustainers of the coup. On March 18, the President retweeted a tweet by William Craddick of Disobedient Media. Disobedient Media is one of the few outfits other than LaRouchePAC, and the Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity, with the guts to question the foundational premise of the coup, that the Russians hacked the DNC and Clinton Campaign Chair John Podesta. Craddick had tweeted, "Russiagate was designed in part to help the UK counter Russian influence by baiting the United States into taking a hard line against them. Leaves us all with a more dangerous world as a consequence.

Mar 21 13:21

FLASHBACK - America, Meet Your (Acting) Secretary of Defense

It hasn’t received much attention, what with Donald Trump suddenly declaring victory against isis, ordering U.S. troops out of Syria, and provoking James Mattis to resign in protest.

But the man who is now the president’s principal adviser on the nation’s defense, tasked with leading the largest employer in the world and managing the fallout from Trump’s military retrenchment, has less experience in government (a year and a half) or the military (none) than any defense secretary since an oil magnate served as the acting head of the Pentagon for several weeks during Watergate 45 years ago.

Mar 21 12:25

America Needs a Stronger Defense Industry? Trillions Down the Hole of Military Spending

Post-WW II, America’s only enemies were and remain invented ones.

No real ones existed since Nazi Germany and imperial Japan were defeated – none anywhere, clearly none today!

Yet the US consistently pours countless trillions of dollars down a black hole of endless waste, fraud and abuse – global militarism and belligerence supported by the vast majority of Republicans and undemocratic Dems, at the expense of world peace, equity and justice.

Trump regime director of trade and industrial policy Peter Navarro is a militant right-wing.

He’s part of the cabal in Washington, wanting US-controlled puppet rule replacing independent governments in China, Russia, Iran, Venezuela, and elsewhere.

Mar 21 11:07

Iraqi Parliament Prepares to Evict US Troops

US military's presence in Iraq falling out of favor across several political blocs.

In the wake of the ISIS War in Iraq, Pentagon officials will tell you what they’ve been saying all along, that America’s intention is to stay in Iraq, and that there is no consideration being given to leaving. It’s not clear the US has spoken to the Iraqi government about this, however.

While many Iraqis accepted the offer of help in the more desperate moments of the ISIS War, the US military has quickly worn out its welcome. Across a number of major political blocs in Iraq, there is growing consensus that the US, and indeed all foreign military forces, need to go.

This has been brewing for months. The Iraqis saw Trump’s visit to Iraq, during which he didn’t meet the Iraqi PM, as a sign of disrespect. That the Pentagon keeps insisting they’re staying in Iraq, without asking the Iraqis, only adds to the sense that the US isn’t really an invited guest in any real sense.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

OK, folks, it appears that the US President and Military are both suffering from an acute, collective case of SMD (selective memory disorder), about the one guy who got the US military out of Iraq the first time, and now is one of the most powerful people in Iraq who holds no governmental office; Muktada Al Sadr.

Let's take a gentle WRH ride in our way-back machine to last year, and the following article, describing the win of his coalition in the Iraqi parliament last year:

Muqtada al Sadr's win in Iraq, is dredging up tough memories for US soldiers

Please remember; he was the official head of the Mahdi Army, which fought the US military tooth and nail, and then, in 2017 this was disbanded: Iraq disbands what used to be known as the "Mahdi Army

Mr. President, I am strongly cautioning you (not that you appear to be listening, but ... God loves His optimists) on this issue, to show the Iraqi government, and its military, just a small bit of respect, and I ask this for the following reasons.

Although the Mahdi Army has been officially disbanded, please don't bet on this Imam's NOT being capable of"pulling the band back together", if he believes, for one second, that the US government wants to occupy Iraq forever, which, it appears, is really the goal, to control who gets Iraq's oil, and in what currency it will be sold.

Were I a betting woman, I would not bet against him doing this, sir; and he and his people know every inch of the country. And if he does this, how are you going to respond?!? With a second invasion of Iraq, let's say, Iraq 2.0- the "golden cut"?!?

Mar 21 10:33

Countdown To America's "Full Spectrum Dominance"

The US is formally committed to dominating the world by the year 2020. With President Trump’s new Space Directive-4, the production of laser-armed fighter jets as possible precursors to space weapons, and the possibility of nuclear warheads being put into orbit, the clock is ticking...

Back in 1997, the now-re-established US Space Command announced its commitment to “full spectrum dominance.”

Mar 21 09:00

How Liberals Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Military Industrial Complex

With March 19 marking 16 years of continuous war in Iraq, there is a distinct feeling of deja vu in Washington, as neocon figures like John Bolton and Elliot Abrams beat the drum for war in Venezuela. Liberals and progressives have traditionally been more critical of war and militarism than their conservative counterparts. But in the age of Trump, everything seems up for debate, and the media is trying to sell the military industrial complex to a more discerning, liberal audience.

Mar 21 08:59

Tulsi Gabbard Challenges US Exceptionalism In San Francisco Speech

Tulsi Gabbard visited the San Francisco Bay Area last weekend. The three term Congresswoman from Hawaii is 37 years old and ethnically diverse. Remarkably, she has 15 years of military experience in the US Army and National Guard as well as substantial political experience. She was elected to the Hawaii State Assembly at age 21.

Tulsi Gabbard supports progressive domestic policy issues including criminal justice reform, healthcare-for-all, national and international steps to protect the environment. She has a high approval rating on gay issues.

What makes Gabbard really distinctive is her emphasis and approach to US foreign policy. While other candidates largely avoid the subject, Tulsi Gabbard says the issue is “central” to all other issues. She says we need to change the policy of “regime change wars” and “new cold war” with Russia and China. She advocates cooperation instead of conflict.

Mar 21 08:13

Thousands of EU Troops Arrive in UK for ‘Major Exercise’ Day After Brexit

Over 10,000 military troops from 13 different countries are set to arrive in the UK for a “major exercise” one day after Brexit is supposed to occur.

The troops will include military personnel from the UK, Belgium, Canada, Denmark, Estonia, France, Germany, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, the Netherlands, Norway, Spain, and the US.

Gov.uk reports: The aim of Joint Warrior is to allow the UK’s Royal Navy, Army, Royal Air Force and their allies to conduct joint operations involving different forces and units and against a range of current and future threats.

Mar 21 07:51

MAJOR PROVOCATION – U.S Air Force Bomber Simulates NUCLEAR ATTACK On Russian Baltic Fleet

A strategic bomber of the US Air Force approached the borders of the Kaliningrad region, according to data provided by the monitoring resource Plane Radar.

Russian authorities have confirmed that the B-52H Stratofortress engaged in a major provocation from eight thousand meters, simulating a nuclear attack on the Baltic Fleet.

Mar 21 07:37

Germany says it will abandon its NATO spending commitments and invest even less than promised, sparking US anger after Trump criticised European allies for expecting a free ride

Germany's military spending is set to fall below its NATO targets, in the latest flashpoint in Berlin's long-running row with Washington.

The latest German budget plans, revealed on Monday, will see defence spending drop well below the two per cent of GDP expected from NATO members.

U.S. ambassador Richard Grenell said the cuts were a 'worrisome signal', while President Donald Trump has repeatedly accused Germany of freeloading on U.S. military might.

But German Chancellor Angela Merkel rejected the U.S. criticism, saying Germany will not cut foreign aid to raise military spending.

Mar 20 11:08

BLOOMBERG’S ARMSMAKER-FUNDED COLUMNIST WANTS YOU TO KNOW: MILITARY SPENDING IS WOKE

Progressives are told to love the Pentagon budget (Bloomberg, 3/17/19) by a pundit whose connection to the military/industrial complex isn’t disclosed.

You may not know it, but bloated Pentagon budgets are actually “progressive.” Or so says a recent opinion piece in Bloomberg News (3/17/19), “Progressives Should Learn to Love the Pentagon Budget,” by Hal Brands.

Bloomberg identifies Brands as the “Henry Kissinger Distinguished Professor at Johns Hopkins University’s School of Advanced International Studies, and senior fellow at the Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessments.” “Kissinger” is ominous enough, but surely Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessments is some innocuous, wonky academic institution, no?

In a piece explicitly defending bloated military budgets, however, perhaps it would be useful to know what exactly the “Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessments” is.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

and of course, they have our Merchant of Death in Chief, AKA President Trump in power at this time, advocating for wars, and more wars, as he believes "war is good for business."

Mr. President, I would politely suggest that war is always to fatten the wallets of the already monied; it is the people at the bottom of your pyramid who get well and thoroughly gouged, physically and emotionally, in wartime.

"You're selling us war... but we're just not buying
You've got your "talking heads" all queued, but we know... they're lying
How many more will you condemn to dying?!?
You can't justify this war,
so just stop trying!"

Courtesy of Claire Karst Rivero, "You're selling us war...", from
http://melophilia.net/pop_music.html

Mar 20 10:29

RON PAUL: IS TRUMP REALLY ABOUT TO ATTACK VENEZUELA?

Last week Secretary of State Mike Pompeo ordered the last of the US diplomats out of Venezuela, saying their presence was a “constraint” on US policy toward the country. The wording seemed intended to convey the idea that the US is about to launch military action to place a Washington-backed, self-appointed politician to the presidency. Was it just bluster, designed to intimidate? Or is the Trump Administration really about to invade another country that has neither attacked nor threatened the United States?

Webmaster's Commentary: 

This could get amazingly ugly, in light of the fact the Russia has said that it will "protect its interests in Venezuela", which was a non-subtle way of Putin promising that if US military goes in with a decap strike against Caracas, they will be met, force for force.

Mr. President, President Putin is a guy who keeps his promises, and were I you, I would not want to second guess him on this.

War with Russia over Venezuela's proven oil reserves?!? Right now, if I were a betting woman, I would not bet against it.

I would like to hope that there is an adult in the bowels of power in DC who has the horse-sense to talk President Trump out of such an action; unfortunately, however, the people around him right now, including Pompeo and Bolton, those recycled neocons who never saw a potential war in which they didn't want the US to engage, want this to move forward.

Mr. President, please; this fight, between the US and Russia over Venezuela's oil, could be catastrophic, and put the US economy into even more of a tailspin than it already is; and Mr. President, every economist I have read, indicates that we are headed into a recession about which you will not be able to do much.

Please consider that, as you and your minions march into the coming election cycle in 2020.

Mar 20 09:54

Russia reveals terrifying new Borei-class submarine armed with deadly 550-kiloton nuke missiles that can strike from 6,000 miles away

RUSSIA has unveiled a first glimpse of its monster submarine - dubbed “Vladimir the Great” - as it goes on sea trials in the Arctic.

The the Borei-style nuclear ballistic missile submarine is capable of launching 20 intercontinental nuclear missiles, decimating cities almost 6,000 miles away.

Mar 20 09:51

10 MORE CHRISTIANS KILLED LAST WEEKEND IN NIGERIA BRINGING TOTAL TO 140, MEDIA STILL SILENT

Another 10 Christians were killed by jihadists in Nigeria last weekend, bringing the total number of Christians killed in the country to 140 since February 10.

Reports indicate that another 10 Christians were murdered in Nigeria on Saturday, March 16, as religious violence in the country continues to reach fever pitch. This brings the total number of Christians murdered to 140, with an additional 160 homes destroyed in the violence.

Morning Star News reported:

Muslim Fulani herdsmen killed 10 Christians in southern Kaduna state, Nigeria on Saturday (March 16), bringing the lives lost in the past five weeks to 140 with 160 houses destroyed, sources said.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

People in countries where they can practice their religion without getting hurt or killed, need to take into account how lucky they are.

Mar 20 09:50

$97 Billion a Year: War Spending Is Bankrupting America

“Pity the nation whose people are sheep

And whose shepherds mislead them

Pity the nation whose leaders are liars

Whose sages are silenced

And whose bigots haunt the airwaves

Pity the nation that raises not its voice

Except to praise conquerors

And acclaim the bully as hero

And aims to rule the world

By force and by torture…

Pity the nation oh pity the people

who allow their rights to erode

and their freedoms to be washed away…”

—Lawrence Ferlinghetti, poet

Mar 20 09:49

KARADZIC SENTENCE INCREASED TO LIFE FOR BOSNIA GENOCIDE: UN

United Nations judges have ordered former Bosnian Serb leader Radovan Karadzic to spend the rest of his life in prison for genocide and war crimes, increasing his original sentence of 40 years.

Karadzic, 73, was convicted in 2016 for the July 1995 Srebrenica massacre of more than 8,000 Muslim men and boys by Bosnian Serb forces. He was also found guilty of leading a campaign of ethnic cleansing that drove Croats and Muslims out of Serb-claimed areas of Bosnia.

A panel of appeals judges in The Hague "imposes a sentence of life imprisonment" after rejecting Karadzic's appeal against his original 2016 conviction, head judge Vagn Joensen said on Wednesday.

Judges at the original trial "underestimated the extreme gravity of Karadzic's responsibility for the most grave crimes committed during the period of conflict, noted for their sheer scale and systematic cruelty", Vagn Joensen said.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

I hope that the man understands how lucky he was, in light of the reality that the UN court judges do not ever use the death penalty. The Death Penalty and International Law

Mar 20 09:48

Everyone Who Opposes War Is a Russian Anti-Semite

Following the publication of the results of a groundbreaking new study this week, experts are now reporting that every single person who questions western military interventionism is both an antisemitic bigot and a Russian national.

Mar 20 09:40

China the Target of Pentagon's Massive Military Budget

Mar 20 08:49

The UN and Israel are manufacturing humanitarian narratives

Despite the dissonance between Israel and humanitarian aid, there is no lack of propaganda seeking to portray the settler-colonial state as a shining beacon for others to emulate. A forthcoming photo exhibition is now set to be hosted at the UN to showcase, in the words of Israel’s Ambassador Danny Danon, “how far Israel will go to help others in need, regardless of who they are or where they live.” He could and, if he was honest, should have added, “as long as the people concerned are not Palestinians.”

Danon’s statement is telling. Israel will indeed do anything in order to create a false image of benevolence as it seeks to avoid scrutiny of its human rights violations against the Palestinians. Erasing its violence from public view is crucial to maintaining a humanitarian façade; an efficient way to do this is to spring into action wherever and whenever humanitarian emergencies can be milked for political points within the international arena.

Mar 20 08:47

THE EXPANDING GLOBAL FOOTPRINT OF U.S. SPECIAL OPERATIONS

With the possible U.S. military withdrawal from Syria in the news on a daily basis, the mainstream media has been quick to parrot the DOD’s claim that 2,000 troops, mostly special operations forces, are to be withdrawn from the country. Although the total number of U.S. special operators deployed to Syria may have approached as many as 5,000, the current headlines have not mentioned that the United States has special operations units deployed not just in Syria, but in a majority of the nations of the world. Over the past seventeen years, the forces at the disposal of U.S. Special Operations Command (SOCOM) have grown exponentially, more than doubling in size in numbers, with a budget that has also expanded four fold in that same period of time.

Mar 20 08:26

Exposure of Another Pro-War Lie Doesn’t Make Media More Skeptical of Pro-War Claims

Listeners will likely know by now, that the late February story, complete with vivid video footage, about the forces of elected Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro burning trucks that were trying to bring the besieged country food and medicine was false. Weeks later, the New York Times (3/10/19) reported that the humanitarian trucks were not set on fire by Maduro’s forces, but instead by anti-Maduro protestors who threw a Molotov cocktail. The Times outlined how the fake story took root, passing from US officials to media that simply reported their claims as fact with no investigation—and does any of this sound familiar?

Folks like CNN‘s Marshall Cohen noted the Times debunking as if it were just an interesting development—a “classic example of how misinformation spreads,” Cohen said in a tweet. Except, as The Intercept‘s Glenn Greenwald pointed out (3/10/19), it was Cohen’s own network, CNN, that led the way in spreading the lie around the world.

Mar 20 08:24

Support HR1004: The Prohibiting Unauthorized Military Action in Venezuela Act

We write to request your support for the bipartisan measure, H.R.1004 – Prohibiting Unauthorized Military Action in Venezuela Act, introduced by Rep. David Cicilline of Rhode Island. We respectfully ask that any floor consideration of legislation addressing the crisis in Venezuela include H.R. 1004, a critical safeguard against unconstitutional U.S. military action. The newly elected Democratic majority of the House of Representatives must make explicit in its first step of developing and adopting legislation on Venezuela that the Congress will serve as an effective counterweight to the militaristic and anti-refugee policies of the Trump Administration.

Mar 20 08:21

U.S. judge rebuts Trump on transgender troop limits

A federal judge on Tuesday contradicted the Trump administration’s “incorrect” claim that no legal blocks remain for it to enforce a contentious policy to restrict many transgender individuals from the U.S. armed forces starting on April 12.

In a three-page notice, U.S. Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly said an injunction that she issued against the policy in 2017 remains in place.

“Defendants were incorrect in claiming that there was no longer an impediment to the military’s implementation” of the transgender policy, the judge wrote.

Mar 20 08:21

Northrop launches hypersonic defense push

With the Pentagon making hypersonic weapons a priority, Northrop Grumman is throwing its hat into the ring in an attempt to claim space in the still-early hypersonic defense market.

The company last week launched a new campaign website focused on hypersonic defense as part of a broader push into the business area, where the Pentagon expects to spend more than $10 billion in the next five years to develop offensive and defensive capabilities.

Hypersonic defense is significantly behind hypersonic offense, something Kenn Todorov, vice president of missile defense solutions and the lead for Northrop’s counter-hypersonic efforts, acknowledged in a March 19 interview. That means there is a lot of room for experimentation in how to tackle the issue.

Mar 20 07:52

DoD requests almost $23B for key intel account

The Pentagon wants to increase its black budget for intelligence programs for a fifth straight year.

The Department of Defense has requested $22.95 billion for the top-line budget of the Military Intelligence Program, the DoD announced Monday. While the overall fiscal 2020 budget request was released last week, the MIP request typically comes days or weeks afterward.

That total includes both base budget and overseas contingency operations funding. No further budget figures or program details will be released for “national security reasons,” per a department statement.

Mar 20 07:48

THE NSA LIED US INTO IRAQ

On this day is the day in 2003 the US invaded Iraq.

How did this “little” point get lost in the NSA story?

The NSA’s JOB is to spy on the communications of our enemies, not to listen to and record your phone calls.

Here’s a case where they not only got it massively wrong, it also looks like they remained silent while their “evidence” was used to drive the US into a ruinous war.

Did they present false information to the Bush criminals or did they merely sit back and do nothing when that evidence was grossly misrepresented.

Mar 20 07:35

Germany Furious at U.S. Ambassador for Calling Out Low Defense Spending

German politicians on Tuesday threatened to expel U.S. Ambassador Richard Grenell over his sharp criticism of Germany’s low defense spending. Grenell took Germany to task for failing to meet its own spending goals, let alone its commitment to the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO).

Grenell responded on Monday to advance word that Germany’s new budget plan calls for defense spending to peak at 1.37 percent of national income in 2020, but then begin declining to 1.25 percent by 2023.

NATO members are supposed to spend 2 percent on defense, a target the Trump administration has insisted upon much more vigorously than previous administrations. The Germans previously pledged to reach 1.5 percent by 2024, which is still much lower than their NATO commitment.

Mar 20 07:11

1,500 US rapid-deployment troops to arrive in Germany this week for NATO drill

US soldiers have begun arriving in Germany in the first test of a new rapid deployment strategy meant to bolster NATO’s presence in eastern Europe. US Army Europe says 350 soldiers from the 1st Armored Division arrived in Berlin on Tuesday as part of a group of 1,500 arriving this week. They’re heading to Poland to link up with tanks and other heavy equipment, being brought in from a pre-positioned site in the Netherlands, AP reports.

Mar 20 07:10

Germany must press US over Yemen drone strikes controlled from Ramstein Air Base – court

A court in Germany ruled on Tuesday that the government has partial responsibility to ensure US drone strikes, controlled with the help of an American base on German territory, are in line with international law. However, judges stopped short of ordering the ban that human rights activists had called for.

Mar 20 07:09

Remembering NATO's Ruthless Bombing Campaign in Serbia

Today, March 24th marks the 16th anniversary since NATO began its 78-day bombing campaign of Serbia. The alliance bypassed the UN under a “humanitarian” pretext, launching aggression that claimed thousands of civilian. Years on, Serbia still bears deep scars of the NATO bombings which, as the alliance put it, were aimed at “preventing instability spreading” in Kosovo.

Mar 19 15:58

Empire of Absurdity: Recycled Neocons, Recycled Enemies

There are times when I wish that the United States would just drop the charade and declare itself a global empire. As a veteran of two imperial wars, a witness to the dark underside of America’s empire-denial, I’ve grown tired of the equivocation and denials from senior policymakers. The U.S. can’t be an empire, we’re told, because – unlike the Brits and Romans – America doesn’t annex territories outright, and our school children don’t color its colonies in red-white-and-blue on cute educational maps.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

It is a simple formula, to which the US government adheres quite rigidly, even though few are really paying attention, because this is the last gasp of the US empire in decline.

Demonize the leadership of the country whose resources you want to expatriate; create regime change to a more US-centric government; insure that those resources are only sold in US dollars.

Wash; rinse; repeat.

But the problems with empires which are about to dissolve, is that the people making these decisions seem to get recycled again and again; John Bolton, as President Trump's Security advisor, was a recklessly horrific choice. Mike Pompeo as Secretary of State has NEVER met a specific war he didn't want to see unjoined by US forces.

And the outcome of all these military misadventures has been the following;

The complete destruction of Iraq, in order to expropriate its oil production
The coming destruction of Afghanistan, for its oil pipelines and its opium
The complete destruction of Libya, where there is a massive military and civil war happening
The coming destruction of Yemen, to make the Saudis and Israelis happy.

These people refuse to see, or understand that, at that moment in our military's history, our military doesn't have the weaponry; the money; troop strength, or manufacturing to insure a positive outcome to a conventional war against Russia and/or China.

Mar 19 15:54

"Dangerous Nuclear Schemes" - Are American Missiles On Hair-Trigger Alert?

The proposed policies, if adopted by the new leadership in the House, would certainly fracture whatever consensus exists today to modernize America's strategic nuclear deterrent -- and at a time when both Russia and China are charging ahead militarily, and Iran and North Korea are racing toward a deliverable nuclear weapons capability.

If the United States chooses to eliminate its land-based missiles, as arms control advocates have proposed, it would dramatically and dangerously simplify an adversary's targeting calculus. The US would be reducing more than 500 distinct American-based nuclear-related targets -- including 450 Minuteman silos and 48 launch control centers spread across five American states -- down to only five continental US targets -- three USAF bomber bases, and two submarines bases -- and only roughly 10 targets if US submarines at sea were included.

Mar 19 15:43

Top US General Denies Plans to Leave 1,000 Troops in Syria

US Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Gen. Joe Dunford issued a statement Monday denying weekend media reports that the US plans to leave around 1,000 troops in Syria, saying the reports are “factually incorrect.”

Dunford presented the current planned “residual force” as 200, saying that this hadn’t changed since February. The US announced 200 would stay on February 21, but on February 22 officially increased that number to 400.

It’s not clear from Dunford’s statement where the “incorrect” aspect of the new report, which came out of a Wall Street Journal, exists. That report suggested that the 1,000 figure was not yet finalized, but was being discussed. Dunford’s comments didn’t include any details on what is actually being discussed, but just that nothing was finalized.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

I think the multiple troop numbers being given, are simply a way of creating confusion about how many US troops the US does have in Syria.

Mar 19 12:42

Is Israel Planning to Seize the Middle East?

Mar 19 12:33

US Unable to Down Advanced Russian Missiles - STRATCOM Chief

In his Federal Assembly address last March, President Vladimir Putin for the first time unveiled an array of advanced Russian weapons, including the Poseidon nuclear-powered underwater drone torpedo, an intercontinental cruise missile and a hyper-sonic nuclear warhead.

The United States will have problems containing state-of-the-art Russian missiles in the future, which is why it is necessary to extend the new Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (START) so that it covers such weaponry, General John Hyten, head of the US Strategic Command (STRATCOM), told the Senate Armed Services Committee on Wednesday.

Mar 19 09:09

‘NATO solidarity clause is called Article 5, not article F-35’ – French defense minister

Europe must move away from full dependency on American weapon supplies, the French defense minister stressed, slamming President Donald Trump’s “conditional” approach towards NATO and his European allies.

Expressing concern that Trump’s idea of NATO’s solidarity is “conditional on allies buying this or that equipment,” the French Minister of the Armed Forces, Florence Parly, wondered if the US commitment to the military block will continue to be “perennial.”

The alliance should be unconditional, otherwise, it is not an alliance. NATO’s solidarity clause is called Article 5, not article F-35.

Mar 18 13:44

"A Massive War On Autopilot" - US Airstrikes Surge In Secret War In Somalia

With so many little wars to keep track of, you probably haven’t noticed that the US has quietly been increasing its airstrikes against targets in Somalia.

Mar 18 10:17

US Military Now Planning To Keep 1,000 Troops On The Ground In Syria

President Trump ordered complete US withdrawal in December; in February he said 200 would remain; and now...

The US military is now making plans to keep almost 1,000 troops in Syria, officials said, a shift that comes three months after President Donald Trump ordered a complete withdrawal, the Wall Street Journal reported on Sunday, citing unidentified US officials.

Talks with Turkey, European allies and US-backed Kurdish fighters have so far failed to secure an agreement to create a safe zone in northeastern Syria, part of Trump’s plan for leaving Syria, the Journal said.

The US now plans to keep working with Kurdish fighters in Syria despite Turkish threats to cross the border and attack the Kurds, the US officials said. The proposal may keep as many as 1,000 American forces, spread from the north of Syria to the south, they said.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

More proof, if anyone needed it, that President Trump is not at all in charge of US foreign policy when it comes to Syria.

Mar 18 09:01

The Army Is Rebuilding its Ammunition Stores for the Next Fight

The head of Army Materiel Command said recently that he is putting a high priority on munitions readiness to make sure Army units are prepared for the next war.

"This means having the right munitions – small-caliber to precision munitions – where we need them at the right time and the right place," Gen. Gus Perna told an audience at a March 14 Association of the United States Army event. "That means we must first ensure that the capability we have here in [the U.S.] can receive, store and issue munitions in a timely, effective manner."

Perna's comments come at a time when the Army continues to replenish its ammunition stocks as it prepares to face an equally formidable foe such as Russia or China on the battlefield.

Mar 18 09:01

Air Force Asks for 4,400 More Airmen, New F-15EX Fighter in Budget Request

The U.S. Air Force is hoping to grow its total force by 4,400 airmen, add a new fighter to its inventory, and pump more money into weapon sustainment and ongoing research programs, such as the B-21 Long Range Strike Bomber project, according to the service's fiscal 2020 budget request.

As anticipated, the Air Force will officially ask to fund eight brand-new F-15EX fourth-plus generation fighters at a cost of $1.05 billion to gradually begin replacing its older F-15C/D Eagle fleet, the budget documents reveal. Service officials recently disclosed the Air Force needs to boost its fighter inventory, but it had not expected to do so with an F-15X variant.

Mar 18 08:42

10,000 troops from 13 countries arrive in the UK for major exercise

More than 10,000 military personnel, 35 warships, 5 submarines and 59 aircraft and helicopters from 13 countries will take part in Exercise Joint Warrior until 11 April.

The aim of Joint Warrior is to allow the UK’s Royal Navy, Army, Royal Air Force and their allies to conduct joint operations involving different forces and units and against a range of current and future threats.

Mar 18 08:40

Gary Sinise Puts Liberal Hollywood To Shame By Revealing Why It’s Important To Honor Veterans

Hollywood star Gary Sinise just opened up about why he has devoted so much of his time to helping veterans, and to lament the fact that many of his peers in the entertainment industry have politicized honoring the military.

Sinise has helped thousands of war veterans through The Gary Sinise Foundation, and he just told TIME that he does not see helping the military as a partisan matter.

“How have our defenders become a political issue? They defend us all. They are us all,” said the Forrest Gump star. “There are Democrats who serve our country, there are Republicans who serve our country.”

Mar 18 08:15

Uncle Sam Sent Me to Rehab for PTSD

I arrived an absolute mess; most of us did. Bloated cheeks, sunken eyes, wearing my PTSD and depression on every inch of my face. I can’t say I really wanted to be there, even if I had volunteered. Ironic, wasn’t it?

This, a civilian treatment facility in nowhere, Arizona, was to be my last official duty as an officer in the U.S. Army – an ignominious end to a once-bright career. Still, the truth is I needed it: After several years of treatment for post-traumatic stress, depression and anxiety, I wasn’t getting any better. The Army saw it and decided to retire me a few years early. Over the last year, my life ran off the rails – self medicating, spiraling, the standard drill for a broken vet.

Mar 18 08:09

Watch out, Putin! Huge American B-52s that can carry nuclear weapons land at RAF base as part of largest US bomber deployment to the UK since Iraq war

This is the incredible moment enormous American B-52 bombers land at a RAF base in the largest US bomber deployment to the UK since the Iraq war.

Amazing photos and video footage have captured the impressive US planes landing at RAF Fairford, in Gloucestershire, their new temporary base.

Their arrival on Thursday and Friday came ahead of a NATO exercise in Georgia, which will be a show of force against Vladimir Putin's neighbouring Russia - though it is unclear if the B-52s will be involved.

Mar 17 10:15

Acting Pentagon Chief Used F-Word to Slam F-35 Programme – Report

With its estimated programme cost of $1.5 trillion, the fifth-generation stealth combat jet has faced a spate of costly setbacks over the past few years. In October 2018, the US even temporarily grounded its entire fleet of F-35s following a crash.

During high-level Pentagon meetings, acting US Defence Secretary Patrick Shanahan harshly criticised Lockheed Martin's F-35 fifth-generation fighter jet programme, using an expletive to describe the fighter, an ex-Defence Department official was quoted by Politico as saying.

According to the former official, Shanahan called the warplane "f***ed up", claiming that Lockheed "doesn't know how to run a programme" and that "if it had gone to Boeing, it would be done much better".

Mar 17 09:53

US Sends Six Nuclear Bombers To Europe

Two US strategic bomber B-52H Stratofortress have, earlier today, arrived at Fairford Air Force Base in the UK. Aircraft DRYER91 and DRYER92 took off from Barksdale air base in Louisiana and landed in the morning at a British airfield, according to the data from the following source:

In addition, three more American B-52 bomber with the callsign STRAY81, STRAY82, STRAY83 and one B-52H with the call sign CLIP91 were transferred to the UK in the last two days. Thus, according to the information of the source, the USA transferred six nuclear bombers to Fairford. This should raise some concerns.

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