WAR/DRAFT/VETERAN AFFAIRS | WHAT REALLY HAPPENED


WAR/DRAFT/VETERAN AFFAIRS

Feb 16 10:49

Preparing to Invade China? US Air Force Drills With B-2, F-35, F-22

The Pentagon has rolled out its “stealth” aircraft, tasked with breaching enemy anti-air defenses on day one of a potential war.

The US military recently conducted drills in the Pacific Ocean, rolling out "stealth" aircraft including the discontinued F-22s, the troubled F-35s and even the B-2 Spirit strategic bombers built near the end of the Cold War, Business Insider reported Friday.

The drills were conducted with the assistance of the USS Wasp, a cross between an aircraft carrier and an amphibious assault vessel.

Interestingly, the F-35s participated with their weapons stored externally. This method increases the jet's payload, as compared to internal storage, but also significantly increases plane's radar visibility. According to the plane's maker, Lockheed Martin, the external payload model switches the airplane into "beast mode," which is expected to be utilized on day three of a war, after enemy anti-air defenses have been suppressed.

Feb 16 10:47

India's PM Modi warns Pakistan of strong response to Kashmir attack

India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi warned Pakistan on Friday to expect a strong response to a suicide attack that killed 44 paramilitary policemen in Kashmir, ratcheting up tension between the nuclear-armed neighbours.

The car bomb attack on a security convoy on Thursday was the worst in decades of insurgency in the disputed region. India said it had “incontrovertible evidence” of Pakistani involvement, a statement quickly rejected by Islamabad.

“We will give a befitting reply, our neighbour will not be allowed to de-stabilise us,” Modi said in a speech, after meeting security advisers to discuss options.

The attack comes months before national elections in India.

The Pakistan-based Islamist militant group Jaish-e-Mohammad (JeM) claimed responsibility soon after a suicide bomber rammed an explosives-laden car into a bus carrying police personnel.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Other reports from the region, seem to indicate that New Dehli is seriously thinking about starting an economic war against Pakistan, particularly if such attacks continue (and trust me, they will continue, unless and until, the Kashmiri people finally get their long-deserved referendum, to permanently determine its status).

Here is the following article giving credence to this possibility:

India to remove trade privileges, and insure a complete financial isolation of Pakistan

And other stories about the case, brought together by antiwar.com:

Kashmir suicide bomber radicalised after beating by Indian troops, parents say

Jaishe-e-Mohammad; the Pakistan-based militants at the heart of tension with India

China has a strong defence understanding with Pakistan:

China to boost military cooperation with Pakistan: Report

The US, under President Obama, inked a deal to provide more defense capabilities to India: Joint Statement by President Obama and India's Prime Minister Singh on Defense Relations

If someone is not able to call off this potential war between Pakistan and India (Sergei Lavrov, white courtesy telephone, PLEASE!!) the US and China may well wind up in this mess also, with China backing Pakistan, and the US backing India against China and Pakistan. I would like to hope that some light of reason will dawn on the leadership of both countries, but it is hard to see where this will come from right now. A war between both nuclear-armed countries could create an absolutely horrific - and irreversible - future for both of them.

Feb 16 10:26

Senator Warren Calls for End of US Support of War Crimes in Yemen

A starker reality is that the US has aided and abetted a criminal, genocidal war against Yemen, mostly carried out by Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and several allies. From the beginning, this war has been a nexus of war crimes that included using cluster bombs on civilian targets, such as weddings, funerals, hospitals, and schools. The US was involved from the start in selecting those and other targets. The US provided intelligence, maintenance, mid-air refueling, and support for a naval blockade (an act of war) that helped starve a country that has always needed to import food to survive.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Yes, I know, I frequently link to images of dead, maimed children; their horrible death by malnutrition, and death by (possibly weaponized) cholera.

President Obama was always the clever, shifty one, who managed to state his case so poetically in prose, if coverage of the Yemen war got any press at all in the US, that you never, ever, would have considered him as a war criminal, when in fact, he was.

I will say the same thing about President Trump, who has massively allowed the Saudi Army to buy all kinds of arms and munitions to continue this genocide in Yemen, and is, because of this continuation in Obama's footprints, also a war criminal.

I am encouraged that Senator Warren has called for an end to this nightmare; but we need other voices in Congress to do that same, and initiate a bullet-proof, veto-proof-piece of legislation, which spells out the US pulling out of this mission, militarily, forever.

Feb 16 10:11

India's PM Modi warns Pakistan of strong response to Kashmir attack

India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi warned Pakistan on Friday to expect a strong response to a suicide attack that killed 44 paramilitary policemen in Kashmir, ratcheting up tension between the nuclear-armed neighbours.

The car bomb attack on a security convoy on Thursday was the worst in decades of insurgency in the disputed region. India said it had “incontrovertible evidence” of Pakistani involvement, a statement quickly rejected by Islamabad.

“We will give a befitting reply, our neighbour will not be allowed to de-stabilise us,” Modi said in a speech, after meeting security advisers to discuss options.

The attack comes months before national elections in India.

The Pakistan-based Islamist militant group Jaish-e-Mohammad (JeM) claimed responsibility soon after a suicide bomber rammed an explosives-laden car into a bus carrying police personnel.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Other reports from the region, seem to indicate that New Dehli is seriously thinking about starting an economic war against Pakistan, particularly if such attacks continue (and trust me, they will continue, unless and until, the Kashmiri people finally get their long-deserved referendum, to permanently determine its status).

Here is the following article giving credence to this possibility:

India to remove trade privileges, and insure a complete financial isolation of Pakistan

And other stories about the case, brought together by antiwar.com:

Kashmir suicide bomber radicalised after beating by Indian troops, parents say

Jaishe-e-Mohammad; the Pakistan-based militants at the heart of tension with India

China has a strong defence understanding with Pakistan:

China to boost military cooperation with Pakistan: Report

The US, under President Obama, inked a deal to provide more defense capabilities to India: Joint Statement by President Obama and India's Prime Minister Singh on Defense Relations

If someone is not able to call off this potential war between Pakistan and India (Sergei Lavrov, white courtesy telephone, PLEASE!!) the US and China may well wind up in this mess also, with China backing Pakistan, and the US backing India against China and Pakistan. I would like to hope that some light of reason will dawn on the leadership of both countries, but it is hard to see where this will come from right now. A war between both nuclear-armed countries could create an absolutely horrific - and irreversible - future for both of them.

Feb 16 09:37

Venezuelan opposition leader says humanitarian aid center opens in MiamiMore:http://tass.com/world/1045007?_ga=2.257650574.426148364.1550213569-363929275.1477368173

CARACAS, February 16. /TASS/. The fourth center for collecting humanitarian aid for Venezuela is being established in the US city of Miami, Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaido wrote on his official Twitter account.

READ ALSO
Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaido
Opposition to take all measures for humanitarian aid to get into Venezuela
"We announce opening a center for collecting humanitarian aid in Miami, so that Venezuelans all around the world can join the movement for Venezuela," Guaido said.

On February 2 Guaido announced opening three checkpoints for accepting foreign humanitarian aid. The three checkpoints are in Cucuta, on the border with Brazil and on an island in the Caribbean. He did not rule out that another checkpoint may be opened on the territory of Colombia but did not specify the details.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

I hope and pray, that the "aid" represented by these offerings are food, medicines, and clothing; not more guns.

Feb 16 09:23

Why Are These Professional War Peddlers Still Around?

Pundits like Max Boot and Bill Kristol got everything after 9/11 wrong but are still considered "experts."? -- One thing that every late-stage ruling class has in common is a high tolerance for mediocrity. Standards decline, the edges fray, but nobody in charge seems to notice. They’re happy in their sinecures and getting richer. In a culture like this, there’s no penalty for being wrong. The talentless prosper, rising inexorably toward positions of greater power, and breaking things along the way. It happened to the Ottomans. Max Boot is living proof that it’s happening in America.

Feb 16 09:21

‘Space Is Free’: China Criticizes US For Accusing Beijing And Moscow Of Seeking Air War

A new US intelligence report, which highlights that Russia and China were trying to wage a war in the skies, sparked the ire of Beijing, which insists that space is not Washington’s “private property.”

“I want to make it clear that outer space belongs to all of humanity. It is not the exclusive property of any country and especially of US private property,” said Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Hua Chunying.

He was referring to the latest article from the Pentagon’s Defensive Intelligence Agency (AID).

Hua criticized the “unjustified and utterly unfounded comments” in the AID report, saying that China advocates the peaceful use of space and opposes its militarization.

Feb 16 08:59

Why Are These Professional War Peddlers Still Around?

One thing that every late-stage ruling class has in common is a high tolerance for mediocrity. Standards decline, the edges fray, but nobody in charge seems to notice. They’re happy in their sinecures and getting richer. In a culture like this, there’s no penalty for being wrong. The talentless prosper, rising inexorably toward positions of greater power, and breaking things along the way. It happened to the Ottomans. Max Boot is living proof that it’s happening in America.

Boot is a professional foreign policy expert, a job category that doesn’t exist outside of a select number of cities. Boot has degrees from Berkeley and Yale, and is a fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations. He has written a number of books and countless newspaper columns on foreign affairs and military history. The International Institute for Strategic Studies, an influential British think tank, describes Boot as one of the “world’s leading authorities on armed conflict.”

Feb 16 08:35

As Russia Collusion Narrative Collapses, The 'Resistance' Reaches New Depths Of Delusion

t’s been the opinion here at CFN that Mr. McCabe and a long list of DOJ / FBI / and Intel employees would eventually be summoned to grand juries on charges ranging from lying to their Internal Affairs colleagues all the way to sedition. Those worms now seem to be turning. Both house and senate committees investigating the Russia narrative declared that they turned up no evidence for it.

And late this week, William Barr was confirmed as a new Attorney General, meaning the extreme case of bureaucratic constipation in that department may be resolving in a shitstorm of counter-revelations and prosecutions in what amounted to an attempted coup d’etat. A lot of the evidence for that is already public and overwhelming.

But what will happen in the meantime as their enablers are dragged into courts of law to answer for their roguery?

Feb 16 07:47

Russians Told To "Prepare For Worst Outcome" As US Prepares New Sanctions

A bipartisan team of US senators is preparing to hit Russia with additional sanctions over its 2016 US election interference and military operations in Syria and Ukraine.

Sens. Bob Menendez (D-N.J.) and Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) are spearheading the measure, called the Defending American Security from Kremlin Aggression Act, which includes a wide range of financial penalties targeting Russia's energy complex, financial industry and "political figures, oligarchs, and family members and other persons that facilitate illicit and corrupt activities, directly or indirectly, on behalf of Vladimir Putin," reported The Independent.

Threats of the sanctions rocked Russian stock and government bond markets at the end of the week, and the country's debt insurance costs jumped alongside FX volatility.

Moscow has responded to the prospect of new sanctions with anger.

A former minister told Russians to prepare for the worst outcome; the Kremlin accused the US of “racketeering.”

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Demonization of a country, compounded with severe financial sanctions against it, are nearly always the prelude to an American-created war, and that is precisely what I am seeing, getting played out, here, with Russia.

Feb 16 07:42

Veni, Vidi, Tweeti - An Obituary For The Republic

What dreamers they were! They imagined a kind of global power that would leave even Rome at its Augustan height in the shade. They imagined a world made for one, a planet that could be swallowed by a single great power. No, not just great, but beyond anything ever seen before — one that would build (as its National Security Strategy put it in 2002) a military “beyond challenge.” Let’s be clear on that: no future power, or even bloc of powers, would ever be allowed to challenge it again.

And, in retrospect, can you completely blame them? I mean, it seemed so obvious then that we — the United States of America — were the best and the last. We had, after all, outclassed and outlasted every imperial power since the beginning of time. Even that other menacing superpower of the Cold War era, the Soviet Union, the “Evil Empire” that refused to stand down for almost half a century, had gone up in a puff of smoke.

Feb 16 07:28

Humanitarian Intervention" And The New World Order, Part 2

However, successful collective security is mainly on direct dependence on three conditions:

The states must be roughly equal, or at least there must be no preponderant power.

All states must be willing to share the cost and responsibility of defending one another.

There must be an international body that has the moral authority and military capacity to take effective action.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

And this has much to do with Russia, India, and China moving out of the dollar, and into other currencies, like the Euro.

When the world's oil is sold in any other currencies than the US dollar, that state, or states, doing this, suddenly become the "evil other,", and to be "reckoned with", by the US, as happened with Libya's Muammar Gaddafi, who had to be quickly "neutralized" by the West, to preventing him from introducing his "gold-backed dinar", which would have left the US dollar in the dust.

When Karl Marx made the observation that all wars are economic in nature, he pegged it absolutely , and completely correctly.

Feb 16 07:19

Analyzing Russia's Nuclear Submarine Threat

Introduction:

Nuclear submarines are the leading strike force of a fleet, capable of covertly controlling the expanses of the world’s oceans and quickly deploying in the required directions. They deliver unexpected and powerful strikes from the depths of the ocean on both sea and land targets.

The main striking force of the Russian Navy is nuclear submarines armed with ballistic and cruise missiles with nuclear warheads. They are constantly in various parts of the world’s oceans, ready for immediate use of their strategic weapons. Submarines, armed with cruise missiles, are aimed mainly at combating the enemy’s large surface ships and strike on the enemy’s coastal infrastructure. Torpedo nuclear submarines are used to disrupt the enemy’s underwater and surface communications and in the defense system against the underwater threat, as well as to escort surface ships and missile submarines.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

So I would like to know, where is the US military (and particularly our Navy) in assuring that capabilities necessary to counter these ships and weapons exist, and are moved very quickly into workable production?!?

Somehow, it appears that the US military has gotten more than a bit behind both Russia and China, in signing off on the capabilities of existing destroyers and subs, And that.... needs to get fixed, and quickly.

Feb 16 06:59

GOOGLE MAPS REVEALS PATRIOT MISSILE LAUNCH SITES IN TAIWAN

The Taiwanese government is doing damage control after the latest Google Maps upgrade revealed their most sensitive missile sites, down to the launcher types and models of the missiles, for all to see – including archenemy China.

Defense Ministry officials in Taipei are asking Google to blur the missile site locations, which were exposed in painstaking 3D detail in the latest upgrade of Google’s satellite map app, for the sake of national security – while urging the public to remain calm.
Taiwan to talk with Google over exposed missile positionhttps://t.co/mO6SE19bmj pic.twitter.com/XM1DrzNL7Y

— Focus Taiwan (@Focus_Taiwan) February 15, 2019

Webmaster's Commentary: 

This is an industrial strength "oops there!!" on Google's part, and the timing could possibly be worse, given the current tensions between mainland China and Taiwan, but I sure has heck don't see how.

Feb 15 11:15

RUSSIA’S STEALTHY STRIKE UAV. DEADLIER THAN EXPECTED

While overall the Russian Armed Forces display remarkable effectiveness and demonstrated a wide range of modern weapons, a number of gaps in Russia’s arsenal are also evident. Arguably the largest one is the absence of attack UAVs of any kind, comparable to either the propeller-driven Predators and Reapers intended for operations in a benign air defense environment, or heavier platforms intended for high-threat environments comparable to the US X-47B UCAS or France’s Neuron. It is therefore no surprise that there was an upsurge in reports of UAVs of various classes under development in Russia, up to and including the S-70 Okhotnik-B, under development by OKB Sukhoi, whose first flight is planned for 2019.

Feb 15 10:29

Chinese State Media Warns of Impending ‘High-Tech Cold War’ Fueled by A.I. Competition

U.S President Donald Trump’s executive order instructing the American government this week to prioritize the development of artificial intelligence (AI) could trigger a “new high-technology Cold War” between the United States and China, the Beijing-run Global Times cautioned on Tuesday.

Beijing’s warning comes on the same day that Adm. Philip Davidson, the top American top in the Indo-Pacific region, told lawmakers that China’s “massive effort to grow and modernize” its military, including endeavors to manufacture “artificial intelligence-equipped weapons,” is “eroding” America’s “relative competitive military advantage” in Asia.

Feb 15 10:28

Gary Sinise Breaks Down in Tears as Hollywood Stars Finally Honor Him

Actor Gary Sinise has spent years going above and beyond helping veterans and wounded warriors through The Gary Sinise Foundation, yet his efforts have virtually been ignored by his fellow Hollywood stars. That finally changed this week, when stars came together to pay tribute to Sinise in a touching video celebrating the 25 years it’s been since he played Lt. Dan in the 1994 film Forrest Gump.

Daily Mail reported that the video included tributes from Sinise’s fellow Forrest Gump star Tom Hanks as well as Tim Allen, Jay Leno, and Ron Howard. Various veterans that Sinise has helped over the years also took part in the video, which left the actor in tears.

“Your commitment, your dedication, you are awesome,” Howard said, with Leno also praising all the work he’s done to help servicemen and women in the armed forces.

Feb 15 10:26

DoD to begin negotiations to buy 485 Lockheed Martin F-35s

The F-35 Lightning II Joint Program Office intends to solicit and negotiate multiple contracts to buy 485 stealth fighters from Lockheed Martin.

The negotiations are for aircraft to be built as part of production Lots 15, 16 and 17, the Department of Defense office said in a notice posted online 13 February announcing its intent to begin bargaining. The contracts would provide for long lead time materials, parts, components, initial spares, and labour, as well as production and testing equipment.

The anticipated award date is in the third quarter of calendar year 2021, the Pentagon says. The notice did not disclose costs and the Joint Programme Office said it wouldn’t speculate about prices during negotiations, though it expects the price of the F-35A to fall.

Feb 15 10:07

Tulsi Gabbard presents bill to stop Trump from pulling out of INF treaty

Democratic presidential candidate Tulsi Gabbard has introduced a bill to congress which would prevent President Donald Trump from withdrawing the US from the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty (INF) treaty.

Feb 15 09:19

The International Rogue Nation: America

In 2003, America (and its lap-dog UK) invaded and destroyed Iraq on the basis of lies to the effect that the U.S. (and UK) regime were certain that Saddam Hussein had and was developing weapons of mass destruction. These U.S. allegations were based on provable falsehoods when they were stated and published, but the regime’s ‘news’-media refused to publish and demonstrate (or “expose”) any of these lies. That’s how bad the regime was — it was virtually a total lock-down against truth, and for international conquest (in that case, of Iraq): it was mass-murder and destruction on the basis of sheer lies.

That’s today’s U.S. Government — that’s its reality, not its ‘pro-democracy’ and ‘human rights’ myth.

Feb 14 19:44

Killer robots should be banned to prevent them wiping out humanity, scientists warn

Mary Wareham, from the Campaign to Stop Killer Robots, said: ‘Bold leadership is needed for a treaty. The security of the world and future of humanity hinges on achieving a ban on killer robots.’

Backers include UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, who has called autonomous weapons ‘politically unacceptable and morally repugnant’.

Feb 14 16:06

Pentagon unveils 17-page strategy on artificial intelligence and says machines will 'impact every corner' of the military as it ramps up efforts in AI-arms race with Russia and China

The U.S. military wants to expand its use of artificial intelligence in warfare, but says it will take care to deploy the technology in accordance with the nation's values.

In a 17-page report, the Pentagon laid out how it plans to inject artificial intelligence into future military operations and how it will keep up with Russia and China's advancements in the futuristic technology.

Feb 14 15:00

Reduced to skin and bones by civil war: Twelve-year-old girl weighs just 22 pounds - the same as a typical toddler - as Yemen fighting drives people to the brink of famine

These heartwrenching images of a 12-year-old starving girl, so weak she has to be carried by her sister, shows just one of millions of victims of Yemen's civil war.

Fatima Qoba weighs just 22lbs - no more than an average toddler - and years of starvation has left her with paper-thin skin stretched over her bones.

She is receiving treatment at a malnutrition clinic in Hajjah, northwest Yemen, after her desperate sibling brought her there, fearing she would die.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

WARNING: VERY GRUESOME GRAPHICS HERE: One has to wonder; is this the "good behaviour" of the US military in the Middle East with which Vice-President tried to pummel his captive audience in Warsaw to try to turn them turn against Iran?!?

Please remember; this is not a civil war; it is a Saudi Arabian war against Yemenite insurgents, aided and abetted by the US military. Famine; death, and disease are what the people of Yemen are left with, after three years int his conflict.

Children die regularly from being shot at by Saudi Arabian fighters in schools, hospitals, and public markets; the US is actively working with the Saudis blockading the Yemeni ports, insuring that no food can get in, so kids like this child starve to death, if they do not get treated. Children are also dying of cholera, because, thanks to the US/Saudi destruction of clean water resources, (and the fact that this cholera may well have been weaponised), any water they get is not clean.

When you look at this child, don't think of her as "collateral damage"; she is a human being, and witness to US enabled Saudi war crimes Yemen.

Talk to your Congressional Representative, and send the image to them; ask them when this madness will stop. Because, Constitutionally, it is only Congress which can approve war.

But with Yemen they didn't

Feb 14 12:19

Bit to the right! Nuclear war contingency plane damaged in hangar mishap

A US Navy aircraft used to maintain strategic communications in the event of a nuclear attack was disabled when its tail clipped the door of the hangar while being towed out last week. Repairs could cost millions.

If you thought denting the fender of the family car while pulling out of the garage was a big deal, this story might put it in perspective. Those responsible for towing the E-6B Mercury aircraft out of its parking spot at the Tinker Air Force Base in Oklahoma definitely failed to do their homework beforehand, damaging the plane’s tail fin in the process.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Ooopsie!

Feb 14 12:02

The Army is buying this pocket-sized drone in bulk for recon at platoon and below

A pocket-sized helicopter drone that’s been used by a select number of soldiers in real-world operations now might become standard kit across a multitude of platoons in the Army.

The Army awarded a $40 million contract to FLIR Systems to provide the “Black Hornet” personal reconnaissance systems under the Army’s Soldier Borne Sensor program.

It was first purchased by the Army in small quantities to meet recon needs of troops in Afghanistan in 2016. It weighs 18 grams, can shoot video and take snapshots with its camera, and previous versions had about a 25-minute flight time.

Feb 14 10:56

  US COMPANY THAT SMUGGLED WEAPONS INTO VENEZUELA LINKED TO CIA RENDITIONS

Two executives at the company that chartered the U.S. plane that was caught smuggling weapons into Venezuela last week have been tied to an air cargo company that aided the CIA in the rendition of alleged terrorists to “black site” centers for interrogation. The troubling revelation comes as Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro has rejected a U.S. “humanitarian aid” convoy over concerns that it could contain weapons meant to arm the country’s U.S.-backed opposition.

Last Tuesday, Venezuelan authorities announced that 19 rifles, 118 ammo magazines, 90 radios and six iPhones had been smuggled into the country via a U.S. plane that had originated in Miami. The authorities blamed the United States government for the illicit cargo, accusing it of seeking to arm U.S.-funded opposition groups in the country in order to topple the current Maduro-led government.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

CIA "front operations" go back a long time.

Many years ago, my late Dad worked for a CIA-Front airline, titled (and I am not kidding on this) Slick Airways, which was first stationed in the Hollywood/Burbank Airport, but moved to San Francisco Airport when I was about 13. I remember that dad never mentioned who owned the airline, originally founded by Earl Slick, or what kind of work they did, but told me that it was primarily used for "cargo transport", just like this one mentioned in the article above.

Feb 14 10:51

Pentagon unveils 17-page strategy on artificial intelligence and says machines will 'impact every corner' of the military as it ramps up efforts in AI-arms race with Russia and China

The U.S. military wants to expand its use of artificial intelligence in warfare, but says it will take care to deploy the technology in accordance with the nation's values.

In a 17-page report, the Pentagon laid out how it plans to inject artificial intelligence into future military operations and how it will keep up with Russia and China's advancements in the futuristic technology.

The report, titled 'Harnessing AI to Advance Our Security and Prosperity,' marks the first time the Pentagon has developed strategies around how it will respond to the rise of artificial intelligence.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Feb 14 10:48

US, Canada Must Upgrade Missile Defenses Against Russia - NORAD Commander

The commander of the US agency tasked with detecting strategic attacks on American soil called on the two countries to stop with their endless discussions and begin deploying new systems to counter the Russian military threat.

General Terrence O'Shaughnessy, the US commander of the North American Aerospace Defence Command — NORAD — says the United States and Canada must urgently upgrade their missile defenses in the face of increased Russian military activity, Global News reports.

The general cited Russia's renewed fighter jet patrols in the Arctic after 30 years of inactivity, regular flights of Russian strategic bombers to the boundaries of US and Canadian airspace and deployment of cruise missiles in northern regions as grounds for the upgrade.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

"Give us money. Lots of money. More than that. MUCH more. Keep going. Keep going. Keep going. Not there yet ... "

Feb 14 09:31

Mike Pence claims Iran's mullahs are plotting a 'new Holocaust' that would 'erase Israel from the map' as he urges European Union nations to withdraw from Obama-era nuclear deal

Vice President Mike Pence told a conference of European and Middle East leaders on Thursday that Iran is plotting to eliminate Israel from the face of the earth, and seeks to unleash a 'new Holocaust.'

With Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu watching, Pence said in Poland that Tehran poses 'the greatest threat to peace and security' in the region.

Hours earlier, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo told reporters that 'confronting Iran' is a necessary step for any nation that wants to 'achieve peace and stability in the Middle East.'

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Feb 13 11:58

AT LEAST 70 CIVILIANS KILLED AS US COALITION POUNDS SYRIAN VILLAGE - REPORTS

Syrian media have repeatedly reported on US-led coalition strikes, which have led to countless civilian casualties and damage to crucial infrastructure in the Arab Republic. The coalition has been bombing targets in Syria since 2014 despite never obtaining a UN mandate and not obtaining Damascus’ approval.

At least 70 civilians were killed or wounded as a result of air strikes launched by a US-led international coalition on the Syrian village of Baghuz in the south-east of the country, Syria state television reported, citing local sources.

Syrian media have continually reported on the death of civilians which were killed in US-led coalition strikes. The coalition regularly carries out airstrikes in Deir ez-Zor region.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Mr. President, I love my country, but abhor its current leadership. And as a Christian Pacifist Activist, never advocate for violence.

And this is why, as completely and intelligently as possible, I have to channel my upset about these policies which create these endless wars, into articles which, hopefully and peacefully, will get other people reading and thinking about this, and talking to their alleged Congressional Representatives, as to why this country is bound up in so many military conflicts on this planet?

Is it because, in the long run, it is cheaper to destroy potential economic rivals than learn to compete against them?!?

Unfortunately, Mr. President, I am afraid that this is the path that the US Deep State - and the corporations they represent - have enforced upon you.

President Trump, you are so on the wrong side of history, to still be authorizing bombing strikes in Syria, and abetting and aiding the Saudis in their genocide of Yemen, I hardly know where to begin.

And where the hell is Congress on these immoral, unstoppable wars which, according to our Constitution, can only exist if Congress approves of them, and which, in the cases of both Syria and Yemen, they did not approve of these wars.

Your campaign rhetoric bears absolutely zero relationship with your actions of the last couple of years you have been in office.

Have you been subsumed by the mechanism of the American Deep State, that you are no longer running the country, but they are, and sometimes, in direct contradiction to what you have said is happening, or will happen?

Mr. President, color me very concerned about your foreign policy trajectory,
which could lead to a world war and total devastation of this planet.

Feb 13 11:42

Air Force’s first female Viper pilot relieved of duty after two weeks

The first female pilot to lead the U.S. Air Force’s Viper team was asked to leave after two weeks on the job, the Air Force Times reported.

Capt. Zoe Kotnik was commander of the F-16 Viper Demo Team, a fleet that performs complicated aerial stunts at widely seen events such as the Super Bowl.

Col. Allen Herritage, director of public affairs at Air Combat Command, stated that Col. Derek O’Malley, 20th Fighter Wing commander, relieved Kotnik of command due to his “loss of confidence in her ability to lead and command.”

Feb 13 11:32

Warmongers In Their Ivory Towers

While it seems the mainstream media paused last week's avalanche of attacks on progressive Hawaiian Democratic rep. Tulsi Gabbard, which painted her as a Russian stooge for daring to oppose Washington's addiction to regime change wars abroad, in favor of new controversy surrounding another progressive, Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) and charges of anti-Semitism leveled at her for criticism of pro-Israel money in US politics, Gabbard hasn't let up a bit in terms of the intensity of her attacks on the warmongering establishment within both parties. In a new televised message Gabbard excoriated the pundit class for constantly dreaming up "new places for people to die".

Feb 13 11:30

CLICKING ON TERRORIST PROPAGANDA EVEN ONCE COULD MEAN 15 YEARS IN PRISON UNDER NEW LAW

Anyone who views terrorist propaganda once online can be jailed for up to 15 years under new laws that have sparked human rights concerns.

MPs had urged the government to scrap plans to criminalise viewing “information useful to a person committing or preparing an act of terrorism”, which goes further than much-used laws that made physically collecting, downloading or disseminating the material illegal.

A United Nations inspector accused the government of straying towards “thought crime” with the proposal, which originally stated that people would have to access propaganda “on three or more different occasions” to commit a terror offence.

But the benchmark was removed from the draft law, meaning a single click is now illegal.

Journalists, academic researchers or people who had “no reason to believe” they were accessing terrorist propaganda are exempt.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

What about Christian pacifist activists, like myself, or born-again atheists like my husband Mike?!?

When does getting the truth out there, as best documented as one can, become a "thought crime"?!?!?

And to the MPs who ever began to think that this law was a "great idea", I have a spoiler for you; George Orwell's "1984" was a cautionary tale; not a bloody "how-to" manual!!

Feb 13 11:20

VENEZUELAN OPPOSITION RECEIVES FIRST BLOCKED AID SHIPMENTS IN DEFIANCE OF MADURO

As part of the continued jostling over the contentious issue of the US intent to deliver foreign aid to Venezuela, which embattled president Nicolas Maduro has controversially banned — going so far as to post troops along potential border access points — opposition leader Juan Guaido announced on Monday that his team had received its first shipment of external humanitarian aid cargo, yet he didn't specify how it was received or which country or organization was the source.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

And one could not help but notice who President Trump had as guests at the White House this morning: Columbia's President Iván Duque Márquez, and his wife, María Juliana Ruiz Sandoval.

Most likely, if in fact this aid came from the US, the supply lines are well and truly carved out in Colombia, and Marquez and President Trump will be figuring out the next political and military steps which must be taken to "regime change" Venezuela to their liking.

Of course, what the Venezuelan people have to say about this, is nothing over which they will expend any skull-sweat whatsoever.

Feb 13 11:01

Stephen Cohen on War with Russia and Soviet-style Censorship in the US

On stage at Busboys and Poets in Washington, D.C. this past week was Princeton University Professor Emeritus Stephen Cohen, author of the new book, War with Russia: From Putin & Ukraine to Trump & Russiagate.

Cohen has largely been banished from mainstream media.

“I had been arguing for years — very much against the American political media grain — that a new US/Russian Cold War was unfolding — driven primarily by politics in Washington, not Moscow,” Cohen writes in War with Russia. “For this perspective, I had been largely excluded from influential print, broadcast and cable outlets where I had been previously welcomed.”

Feb 13 10:12

US ‘UNCONSTITUTIONAL’ ANTI-BDS LAW CHALLENGED IN MARYLAND COURT

A legal battle is underway in the US state of Maryland to reverse an anti-Boycott Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) legislation denounced as “unconstitutional”. Syed Saqib Ali – a former Maryland state representative – today filed a civil rights lawsuit against an executive order denying government contracts to businesses that boycott Israel.

The suit – filed in federal court – alleges that the Maryland leaders Gov. Larry Hogan and Attorney General Brian Frosh violated Ali’s First and 14th Amendment rights when Hogan signed an executive order in October 2017 requiring all state contractors to promise they will not boycott Israel.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

It will be interesting to see how this case goes down, and to what legal appeals may apply, if any.

I frankly hope that this gets argued all the way up to the Supreme Court.

Feb 13 10:04

Pentagon Seeks Massive Increase for ‘Slush Fund’ War Account

The U.S. Defense Department is planning to ask Congress for a massive increase to a controversial war account often criticized as a “slush fund” in order to circumvent mandatory spending limits, according to multiple sources with knowledge of the discussions.

The increase would amount to a reversal for President Donald Trump’s White House budget director, former Republican Rep. Mick Mulvaney, who for years campaigned against what he saw as former President Barack Obama’s abuse of the account, calling it a “slush fund.” After he was tapped for the job, Mulvaney told Senate lawmakers that he would seek to eliminate the fund altogether.

Five sources—both U.S. government officials and outside sources close to the discussions—said the Pentagon in its fiscal year 2020 budget request is planning to ask lawmakers to more than double the size of the Overseas Contingency Operations account, as it is formally called, to a level not seen since the height of the Iraq surge in the late 2000s.

Feb 13 10:01

The US Air Force Has Won Control of the Space Force

Detailed planning for the proposed Space Force is expected to be handed over soon to the U.S. Air Force, a sign that Pentagon leaders — many of whom opposed the notion of consolidating military space operations in a new organization — have found a version that they can support.

In coming weeks, Acting Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan is expected to sign a memo asking Air Force Secretary Heather Wilson to stand up a team that will figure out the bureaucratic nuts and bolts of the new space organization, according to a draft of the memo being circulated by top administration and military officials.

A spokesman for Shanahan, who is traveling in the Middle East, was not immediately available for comment.

Feb 13 09:57

Admiral to Congress: Think about the 280-plus ships that didn’t have collisions

In a tense exchange before the Senate Armed Services Committee, the four-star admiral who led the U.S. Navy’s internal review into two deadly collisions in 2017 told members that while two ships had tragic accidents that year, the rest of the fleet was collision-free.

Adm. Phil Davidson, now head of U.S. Pacific Command, was responding to a question from Sen. Angus King, I-Maine, about warnings that readiness was slipping in the fleet, as detailed last week in an investigation by ProPublica. The report dug into the years preceding the collisions of the destroyers Fitzgerald and John S. McCain in Asia that claimed the lives of 17 sailors.

King pressed Davidson about providing Congress with specific data regarding training and certifications of sailors prior to employment by the fleet, adding that the dual tragedies were preventable.

Feb 13 08:34

Hands off ‘our hemisphere’ or Venezuela pays the price: US Senator warns Russia

This is pathetic. Without Venezuela and their gold the district of criminals is finished!

The US staked a claim on half the world, as Senate Armed Services Committee chair Jim Inhofe said Washington might have to intervene in Venezuela if Russia dares set up a military base not just there, but “in our hemisphere.”
“I think that it could happen,” Inhofe (R-Oklahoma) told a group of reporters on Tuesday. “You’ve got a guy down there that is killing everybody. You could have him put together a base that Russia would have on our hemisphere. And if those things happen, it may be to the point where we’ll have to intervene with troops and respond.”

Feb 13 08:26

The Latest Casualty of the Marines’ Surrender to Political Correctness

Speaking to his Marines, as told to me, Mainz dismissed some of the administrivia that eats up much of their training time, saying something like, “We’re not going to do that faggot stuff.” A Marine understandably objected to his use of the word “faggot,” and a brigadier general ordered him relieved of his command. Of course it can’t be disputed that this was an unfortunate and inappropriate expression. A proper sanction would have been justified. But to destroy the career of one of the Corps’ best commanders for a lapsus linguae is ridiculous. Should this lapse wipe away all the good accomplished by this highly effective military leader—and all of his potential future accomplishments in a Corps that needs his leadership? And does the Marine Corps really want to put such fear into its best officers that they lose their force and swagger?

Feb 12 14:52

These volunteers spent 21 years comforting dying veterans, now the VA is evicting them

The Veterans Affairs hospital in West Los Angeles is evicting a volunteer group that spent 21 years at the bedsides of dying patients who otherwise would have been alone in their final moments.

The Twilight Brigade is among several veterans service organizations that have been told by the VA Greater Los Angeles Healthcare System they can no longer have offices or meetings on its campuses. The decision comes in the aftermath of an inspector general’s report that criticized the system’s administration for leasing land for a dog park, oil drills, baseball fields and other uses that did not clearly benefit veterans.

So, why are some of the evictions targeting groups dedicated to veterans? The answer isn’t clear, especially to the organizations now searching for new homes.

Feb 12 13:00

Rethinking America's Military Industrial Complex

The US Military Industrial Complex no longer needs neither actual wars nor the threat of war for its own survival. This factor could actually change dynamic of this institution/bureaucracy in our lifetimes and it may actually be changing as we speak.

Very often something will evolve and become ubiquitous to the degree that we forget its origin. Putting a dead tree in your house on Christmas is a good example, few people think of why this is done, they just do it because it has been done for a long time and thus seems completely natural and important to do so every year. A justification for doing it is no longer needed, it is something done by default. In some ways the necessity to start questionable wars of luxury is much like that Christmas tree – an odd tradition that is not of an importance or value anymore.

In order to break this down we need to go back to the start.

Feb 12 10:06

The Great Con of American Patriotism

In the latest installment of “Scheer Intelligence,” Kovic tells Truthdig Editor in Chief Robert Scheer, “I couldn’t stop speaking against that war. I was arrested a dozen times. I—every single day was life and death. Every single day, I know that there could be another young man like Ron Kovic being paralyzed, another young man from a town or a farm somewhere in this country, being killed in that war that had to stop.”

Sadly, Sjursen, who says he watched the film based on Kovic’s life before he was even of age to join the military, explains that he wasn’t able to hear past what he calls the “faux patriotism” that pushed him to attend the U.S. Military Academy, as well as do tours in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Feb 12 09:47

Russia Challenges US Defense in Space, Developing Capabilities - Intel Report

Russia is likely pursuing directed energy weapons including lasers that could take out enemy satellites, the US Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) said in a new assessment entitled "Challenges to Securities in Space".

"Russia likely is pursuing laser weapons to disrupt, degrade, or damage satellites and their sensors", the report said Monday.

Prior to July 2018, the report added, Russia began delivering a laser weapon system to the Aerospace Forces that is likely intended for an antisatellite (ASAT) mission.

Moreover, the document also claims Russia is developing enhanced on-orbit dual-use technology that can be used to attack and permanently disable satellites.

Feb 12 08:36

RIP INF Treaty: Russia’s Victory, America’s Waterloo

On March 1, 2018 the world learned of Russia’s new weapons systems, said to be based on new physical principles. Addressing the Federal Assembly, Putin explained how they came to be: in 2002 the US withdrew from the Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty. At the time, the Russians declared that they will be forced to respond, and were basically told “Do whatever you want.”

And so they did, developing new weapons that no anti-ballistic missile system can ever hope to stop. The new Russian weapons include one that is already on combat duty (Kinzhal), one that is being readied for mass production (Avangard) and several that are currently being tested (Poseidon, Burevestnik, Peresvet, Sarmat). Their characteristics, briefly, are as follows:

Feb 12 08:10

UK Defense Minister's Belligerent Rhetoric Toward Russia, China Absurd - Scholar

The UK should strengthen its global presence and enhance its lethality according to UK Defense Minister Gavin Williamson as he addressed the Royal United Services Institute on Monday.

The cabinet minister unveiled plans to modernize and strengthen the UK armed forces to prepare Britain in the post-Brexit world. Williamson spoke about UK plans to send its new aircraft carrier to the Pacific – where there is currently a territorial dispute in the South China Sea — invest in offensive cyber capabilities and adopt a harder military stance after Brexit. The UK withdrawal from the EU is of course only weeks away as Prime Minister Theresa May tries to strike a last-minute deal with Europe.

Feb 11 19:35

Trump Tweets In Persian Now? "Birthday Wishes" Sent To Iran's Leaders

On the 40th anniversary of Iran's 1979 Islamic revolution, President Trump attempted to reach out to Iranians in their own language by tweeting "the long-suffering Iranian people deserve a much brighter future." Notably this marks the first time in history a sitting US president issued a social media statement in Persian, or the Farsi language.

Though we don't expect the "birthday wishes" on the occasion of the Ayatollah's founding their Islamic Republic to be received too warmly inside Iran, as the message also appeared a veiled threat of regime change.

We wonder what poor low-level CIA or State Department analyst had to be pulled from their work and into the White House to compose the foreign language tweet for the president.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Right now, after Mike Pompeo's speech last week, claiming that Hezbollah was also in Venezuela, and Iranian-linked, I just wanted to laugh out loud.

Unfortunately, what this may mean is, The Unhinged Ones in the Bowels of Power in DC , lusting to create their "own propaganda", so will actually conjure up some kind of alleged attack/false flag in Venezuela, claim that Iran/Hezbollah did this, and off we will go, into yet another set of military misadventures, again, fighting wars in two hemispheres, one in the Middle East.

President Trump, it gives me no pleasure to have to say this, but the way, and the obscene degree, to which U.S. foreign policy on Iran is driven by Tel Aviv's agenda, is officially horrible, and detrimental to the way other countries in the Middle East see the US Government and this absolutely must stop.

If the US government is going to stand on the right side of history on this issue, at the end of the day, the US government needs to give the Iranian people, a real choice in how they wish to govern themselves, and who they pick for ultimate leadership; and yes, we understand that Iran is a theocracy....but so is Israel.

40 years is a very short time in Iran's history, since the time of the Shaw was overthrown; if you, or I had the chance to speak with a younger Iranian person, still in college, and find out what their dreams and hopes are for their lives, as well as the lives for their families and friends, what I think would be that many of them are surprisingly contemporary, and want to see the political process open up, and become more liberal here.

But "regime change" in Iran to control its oil, with Russia most probably assisting Iran militarily if this does happen, can have absolutely catastrophic consequences which can never be reversed.

Feb 11 19:03

Russia's Exports Continue To Defy US Sanctions

Authored by Tom Luongo,

Russia is winning its war of attrition against aggressive U.S. sanctions policy. Diplomatically, Russia is winning on all fronts, finding positive solutions through its abundant energy reserves to open gaps in relationships hat have been frozen in geopolitical amber for two generations.

I’ve covered the surprising stability of the Russian ruble over the past six months given the volatility in oil prices in the past. That stability is key to the future of central Asia as well as eastern Europe.

Putin is positioning Russia and the ruble as the glue which ties central Asia’s development together through the Eurasian Economic Union. So, it and Russia’s economy defying the best efforts of the U.S. to impede its growth is something to keep watch on.

Feb 11 14:14

President starts a war? Congress yawns. Threatens to end one? Condemnation!

The real question we need to ask is why is Congress so quick to anger when the president finally seeks to end the longest war in U.S. history?

Feb 11 12:04

“WTF is going on in downtown LA?”: Army war drills continue across Los Angeles

Having started on Monday, the US Army continues its war drills across the greater Los Angeles metropolitan area through Saturday with the goal of enhancing Army Special Forces skills by “operating in urban environments”, Army Special Operations Command said in a statement.

Feb 11 10:50

Poland Buying US Rocket Artillery to 'Guarantee Country's Security' - Minister

The US State Department approved the sale of 20 High Mobilityar Artillery Rocket System Launchers (HIMARS) and associated support equipment to Poland last week, with the deal worth an estimated $414 million.

Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki and Defence Minister Mariusz Blaszczak have made a joint formal announcement on Warsaw's intent to buy the US weapons system on Sunday afternoon, the Polish Defence Ministry announced on its official website.

Speaking at a ceremony in Warsaw, Defence Minister Blaszczak said that the purchase of the US-made system will be formalised on Wednesday, with the "modern equipment" helping to "guarantee" Poland's security.

Feb 11 10:46

UK Sending Aircraft Carrier To China In "Show Of Force"

Perhaps out of humiliation over the ongoing spectacular tragicomedy that is Brexit, and in desperate need of a distraction from her domestic political troubles, Theresa May has taken a page out of the the US neocon playbook, and has decided to send Britain’s new aircraft carrier to China’s backyard in what The Times has dubbed "a show of strength" - just in case Beijing is unclear how to respond to this hilarious development - because apparently the UK believes it is a US stunt-double when it comes to sending Beijing messages about its territorial ambitions in the South China Sea.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

OK, that's it: in making this move, Prime Minister May has proven, without a doubt, that she has gone completely round the bend, gone "mental", and has to be removed for the safety and continued lives of her brother and sister Brits.

And the worst thing about this move, is that Chinese Military and other officials are laughing their collective heads off at it.

Feb 11 10:40

MADURO DENIES HEZBOLLAH TIES, MOCKS POMPEO'S CHARGE AS "PROVEN LIES"

One day after US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo claimed Hezbollah was "active" and operating inside of Venezuela, embattled President Nicolas Maduro responded in a televised speech in Caracas slamming Pompeo's allegation which had also hinted at Iranian connections as "lies that have been proven false."

According to Maduro, “Hezbollah is a legal political party within Lebanon’s political life. Hezbollah is primarily a political party, with ministers, deputies, and elected officials.”

“We do not have, nor have we had any political relations with the Hezbollah political party. There are many Lebanese living in Venezuela,” he continued during the Friday statement, as translated by Al-Masdar News journalist Renato Velez. Acknowledging the historic roots of Arab communities in Latin America and Venezuela, he continued, “Long live the Lebanese, Syrian and Palestinian Arab colonies in Venezuela.”

Webmaster's Commentary: 

What concerns me most about this codswallop, disgustingly oozing out of Pompeo's mouth, is the possibility that some in the Bowels of Power in DC will choose to make this insanity a reality, by having some alleged Hezbollah blow up some American asset in Venezuela, and off we go, to yet another war for resources.

I would like to politely remind this Thoroughly-Unhinged Sector of the US government, that Russia has already sent in about 400 Special Ops Mercs, tasked with keeping the Maduro government alive and well.

Are we really up to confronting the Russian Special Ops mercs in Venezuela over their oil reserves?!?

I hope the short answer to this will be, "HELL, no!!"

Feb 11 10:31

2019: THE THREE TRENDS THAT MATTER

Look no further than Brexit in Britain, the yellow vests in France and the Deplorables in the U.S. for manifestations of a broken social contract and decaying social order.

Among the many trends currently in play, Gordon Long and I discuss three that will matter as 2019 progresses: 2019 Themes (56 minutes)

1. Final stages of the debt supercycle

2. Decay of the social order/social contract

3. Social controls: Surveillance capitalism, China's Social Credit system, social globalization

Webmaster's Commentary: 

The big things you can do right now, to protect yourself, is make sure that you are prepped for any emergency; that means long-term food storage; extra medicines for yourself and your pets, and potable water. You also need to have a bug-out kit in your car, and make sure that the gas gauge is never below half, if you really are going to need to get somewhere out of the way of the insanity.

Have only what you need in the bank to pay your bills. Look at having some physical gold and silver.

One of the best experts in this area is Daisy Luther, who has been on Mike's show. You can find her on line, and in books you can order.

Feb 11 10:21

THE CYNICISM OF EMPIRE: SEN. RUBIO TELLS VENEZUELANS TO OVERTHROW THEIR GOVERNMENT...OR STARVE!

There is a sad disregard for human life among the neocon regime-changers. The devastation of Iraq, with its million dead, was a mere stepping stone to a "re-making" of the Middle East. A Libya turned into a modern day slave market after neocon-backed "liberation" is off the radar screen. Who cares, right?

Syria suffered a half million dead after a US backed jihadist insurgency - strongly backed by the neocons - and not a word of remorse.

In fact, in a remarkable act of chutzpah, neocons have taken to blaming the victims in Syria, with the Washington Post's Josh Rogin branding Assad, who fought and ultimately defeated US-backed terrorists (and in so doing saved Syria's ancient Christian community) an "enemy of humanity." One need not join the Assad fan club to come to the easy conclusion that an al-Qaeda-controlled Aleppo, for example, was a living hell while an Aleppo liberated by Assad very soon was on its feet again as a multi-confessional and multi-cultural center of Syria.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Senator Rubio, a word, please: of all the people in South America, Venezuelans are among the most conscious of their history, and wish to make their own forward trajectory from the horrific place where they are now (largely driven by US sanctions) to their collectedly decided-upon future.

And this is why I can guarantee that they will NOT be "throwing flowers" at American Troops' feet if we invade; they will be throwing everything and anything to hand at the American invaders, until they ultimately leave.

Also, as you well know (or should, as a 2019 member of Select Committee on Intelligence), Russia has already dispatched a contingent of around 400 Special Forces in late January Russian Mercs reportedly descend on Venezuela to help protect Maduro Regime

You have to love that phrase "descend on Venezuela", but... I digress.

IF you are thinking seriously, about going head to head with both Russian and Venezuela troops in Venezuela, I would strongly caution you against such an act.

War with Russia, over the Venezuelan oil reserves?!?

Sir, I would ask you to consider the following: just because an act by the US government and military, could be the most ham-fistedly, pig-headedly stupid thing this government and military could possibly do, is no guarantee that they will not do it.

A war against Venezuela and Russia at this time, would be the most pig-headedly, ham-fistedly stupid thing the US government could do at this point; this is because our Military does not have the weaponry; the money; or the manufacturing necessary with which to create a positive outcome to a war with Russia.

If you truly "care about the troops", then you and your colleagues should push away from any martial approach here, and consider reasonable negotiations with the Venezuelan government; now that... would be logical.

You are welcome, Senator Rubio!!

Feb 11 09:59

Russia Completes Testing of Poliment-Redut Shipborne Air Defence Missile System

The testing of the Russian shipborne Poliment-Redut air defence missile system for the frigates of the Project 22350 series has been completed, Commander-in-Chief of the Russian Navy Adm. Vladimir Korolev has announced.

"The state testing of the Poliment-Redut air defence missile system has been completed," Korolev said as quoted by the Russian Krasnaya Zvesda newspaper.

The air defence missile system is capable of hitting air targets located within an up to 150-kilometer (93-mile) radius and at an altitude of up to 30 kilometers.

Feb 11 09:19

‘ENEMY CAN’T ASK US TO LEAVE, THEY MUST LEAVE’: IRAN CALLS FOR US TO WITHDRAW FROM THE REGION

Tehran has brushed off US calls to pull its forces out of Middle East countries, saying that it is the ‘enemy’ Washington who should go back home. It comes as Iran marks 40 years since the Islamic Revolution.
As the US’ own forces start to withdraw from Syria, Washington is increasingly worried that Tehran is getting too entrenched in the war-torn country. The US has repeatedly lambasted Iran for its presence in Syria, where Tehran maintains ‘military advisers.’

On Monday, the deputy head of Iran’s Revolutionary Guards fired back at Washington: “The enemy cannot ask us to leave the region. They must leave the region.”

“We will help any Muslim anywhere in the world,” Brigadier General Hossein Salami added.

It’s not the first time that Iran has rejected US demands to curb its ‘influence.’ Last week, a senior aide to Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei, Ali Akbar Velayati, warned: “Whether they want to or not, the Americans must leave Syria.”

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Mr. President, a word please; last time I checked Russia and Iran had been invited by the government of Syria to assist it in getting rid of the western funded, trained, and supported jihadists: the US government was not invited to this particular party, in case the memo never reached you.

In fact, this US occupation of Syria falls under the heading of " a major crime against sovereign state."

And sir, this stated objective that the US has to stay in Syria to watch Iran?!? I don't know if any one has mentioned this to you, but even though you have pulled the US out of the P5+1, Iran, as declared through the IAEA's certifications, Iran is still keeping its part of the deal.

Has Iran started a war in the last two hundred years?!? The short answer is no, Mr. President; they have not. So why in the world is the US "watching them" from Syria?!?

Surely, there has to be another reason. Perhaps creating a false flag in Syria, blame it on the Iranians, and off we would be going, into an Israel-favored war?!? I would like to hope - and pray - that this is not the design objective of the US staying in Syria.

And Mr. President, there is another issue which the American people would like to have explained; why is it, sir, that Iran has signed the NNPT, but Israel has not, meaning, of course, that they are not entitled to any money or weaponry, according to the Mann Act and the Symington Amendment?!?

Isn't the US violating its own law, every time Israel gets more money, or weaponry from the US?!? Can you explain this to us, please?!?

And your excuse for staying in Syria being that we must "protect Israel" with our Syrian occupation?!? President Trump, can you enlighten us on the latest and greatest package passed by Congress for Israeli aid?!?

U.S., Israel Sign Historic 10-year, $38-billion Military Aid Deal

Sir, forgive me, but at this massive cost to the US government (while homeless Vets still sleep rough in our streets, and our infrastructure is crumbling around us), one might imagine that possibly, just possibly, with all that illegal cash, that Israel is receiving from the US, Israel would be fully capable of protecting itself.

So the answers you have provided ring utterly hollow, as the "reasons why" the US military is still in Syria. What you and Israel may have in mind for Syria and Iran, I shudder to contemplate.

Feb 11 08:38

Tehran 'Will Raze Tel Aviv, Haifa' if US Attacks - Iranian Islamic Guard Comdr.

On Monday, hundreds of thousands of Iranians held nation-wide rallies to mark the 40th anniversary of the fall of the Shah and the triumph of Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, the Shiite cleric who led an Islamic Revolution that rattles the West to this day.

Tehran "will raze Tel Aviv and Haifa" to the ground if Washington attacks Iran, the IRNA news agency cited an Iranian Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) commander as saying on Monday.

"The United States does not have the courage to shoot a single bullet at us despite all its defensive and military assets. But if they attack us, we will raze Tel Aviv and Haifa to the ground," Yadollah Javani, the Guards' deputy head for political affairs said during a rally celebrating the 40th anniversary of the Islamic revolution.

Feb 11 07:39

Capitol Hill Cowards: Why Congress Is Trying to Undermine Trump’s Troop Withdrawal Plan

Afghanistan is America’s longest war, at seventeen years and counting. It has run longer than the Mexican-American War, Civil War, Spanish-American War, World War I, World War II, and Korean War combined. Yet Congress has conducted minimal oversight and done nothing as the executive branch’s aim devolved into pushing failure onto the next administration.

In Syria Washington chose to enter a civil war of minimal security concern to America. Syria was allied with the Soviet Union during the Cold War. Washington’s previous forays in similarly imploding Middle Eastern nations—Lebanon and Libya—turned out badly. The executive branch concocted ever more outlandish duties for American military personnel: extirpate ISIS, exclude Iran, confront Russia, pacify Turkey, protect Kurds, and pressure Damascus. Yet Congress never voted on the continual usurpation of legislative power.

Feb 10 09:14

'You don’t get to authorize US military interventions' – US Rep. Khanna to Venezuela’s Guaido

After self-proclaimed leader of Venezuela Juan Guaido said he might 'authorize' a US military intervention, he was rebuffed by Congressman Ro Khanna, who told him he doesn’t get to make the call on "US military interventions."
“Mr. Guaido, you can proclaim yourself leader of Venezuela but you don’t get to authorize US military interventions,” Khanna tweeted on Saturday, adding that only the US Congress can greenlight sending troops overseas.

“We will not,” the Democrat from California added.

Feb 10 08:41

US aims at breaking down global architecture of arms control — Russian ambassador

The United States aims at breaking down the existing architecture of arms control while pursuing an illusory goal of achieving global military dominance, Russian Ambassador to the US Anatoly Antonov said commenting the situation around the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty.

"The US aims at breaking down the architecture of arms control which has been built for many years between our two countries," Antonov told TASS in an interview ahead of the Diplomats' Day. "We see in this an attempt to create room for themselves to pursue the illusory idea to achieve global military dominance," he added. "It needs to be said directly — such attempts are impossible to implement," he noted.

Feb 09 11:57

Pussy John Bolton and His Codpiece Mustache: Examining the Freak Show

American government has become a collection of sordid and dangerous clowns. It was not always thus. Until Bush II, those governing were never lunatics. Eisenhower, Truman, Kennedy, Johnson, Nixon, Obama, Clinton had their defects, were sometimes corrupt, and could be disagreed with on many grounds. They weren’t crazy. Today’s administration would seem unwholesome in a New York bus station at three in the morning. They are not normal American politicians.

In particular they seem to be pushing for war with Iran, China, Russia, and Venezuela. And–this is important–their behavior is not a matter of liberals catfighting with conservatives. All former presidents carefully avoided war with the Soviet Union, which carefully avoided war with America.

Feb 09 11:47

Saudi-led coalition in Yemen launches a targeting operation in Sanaa

CAIRO (Reuters) - The Saudi-led coalition in Yemen launched a targeting operation in the Houthi-held capital, Sanaa, Saudi state TV reported on Saturday.

The operation targeted a location for storing and preparing drones and launch vehicles in Sanaa.

The coalition added that the operation conformed to international law and that measures were taken to protect civilians.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Notice the cold, almost clinically detached, tone of the reporting.

And notice also, no images of the attack,with carnage raining down from the skies; and no mention of the number of civilians maimed for life or killed, many of them just infants and toddlers.

And that last statement "The coalition added that the operation conformed to international law and that measures were taken to protect civilians.", was simply cosmetic, to "save face" for when local first responders get to the site, and try, desperately, to untangle the living from the dead.

So Yahoo and Reuters, here is what life looks like in Yemen, courtesy of this Saudi-generated, US-enabled war against this country: (warning: very graphic images)

Images:
Dead, dying, and maimed for life kids, courtesy of US-enabled Saudi Bombing Runs

Images: Yemeni children dead, or dying of cholera, possibly weaponised, and with water resources deliberately destroyed by US-enabled Saudi military

Images of Yemeni children dying from malnutrition, because a US and Saudi blockade of Yemeni ports.

President Trump, I would have never thought for a moment, when you were campaigning, that you would continue to sign off on US aided and abetted Saudi war crimes in Yemen; and yet, you absolutely appear to have utterly no moral qualms whatsoever, about the assassinations of the innocent here, not to mention that your good friends in the weapons industry, are making such a killing, both literally, and financially, through this grinding war.

To the American Congress, which is the only body in the US government which can legally declare war, you must, lawfully, and peacefully, reclaim your power in this regard.

It is high time for both a very public, peaceful conversation about this Saudi-led, US-abetted war to happen, followed through upon, with veto-proof legislation Congress passes to get our contribution to this horrific genocide ended.

Feb 09 11:21

US Airstrikes Kill 15 in Somalia; General Warns Airstrikes ‘Not Enough’

AFRICOM claims al-Shabaab was trying to 'illegally tax' civilians
Jason Ditz Posted on February 8, 2019Categories NewsTags AFRICOM, Somalia
US African Command (AFRICOM) has reported that airstrikes against targets in Somalia have killed at least 15 “fighters” from al-Shabaab. Both strikes were in the Lower Shabelle region, with 11 killed Wednesday and 4 killed Thursday.

These are the latest in an ever-growing number of strikes inside Somalia. The US strikes have increased substantially in the past few years, and this year’s bombings have been even more frequent than the last year.

Following the strikes, AFRICOM head Gen. Thomas Waldhauser warned the Senate that despite the escalations, airstrikes were “not enough” to defeat al-Shabaab, and that Somalia’s local forces need to get more deeply involved in the conflict.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

I have to wonder, at what point General Waldhauser will call for "more American troops" in Somalia, if these air strikes continue to be "not enough."

Feb 09 11:17

Venezuela’s Guaido Won’t Rule Out Authorizing US Military Intervention

With the power struggle between Venezuela’s President Maduro and US-backed interim-president Juan Guaido continuing, Guaido now says he will not rule out personally authorizing a US military intervention to force Maduro out.

Guaido says he will “do everything that is necessary,” saying his goal is to generate “governability and stability to deal with the emergency.” He admitted that a US invasion is a “very controversial subject.”

That’s putting it mildly. Maduro’s ability to maintain power for years has rested on having the support of the military, and portraying his opponents as US puppets trying to foster a coup. With Guaido, the US is now very public about how much they endorse his rule, and how open they are to attacking Venezuela to make that happen.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

President Trump, two words, please, on this possible scenario, and sir, they are "HELL, NO!!"

As you are aware, Russian troops (Either private mercs, or Russian Special forces) have been imbedded with the best of Maduro's military, as of late last month.

Russia has huge financial interests in Venezuela; should those interests be potentially compromised by a US invasion/occupation, there will be hell to pay, sir.

And the other consideration here is, unlike many Americans who are completely ignorant of the real origins of their country, and how those origins came about, the Venezuelan people have a strong sense of their history, and how their country came into being.

Any US government invasion will cause these people to rise up, and cost the US government not only any shred of international credibility it may still have, but also the negative optics of such an invasion, here at home may well cost you re-election in 2020.

Mr. President, in order to win a war which transfers into a lasting peace, the aggressor has to be "on the right side of history"; in a potential invasion of Venezuela, the US government is on the polar opposite path.

You are welcome, sir!

Feb 09 10:57

POMPEO ATTEMPTS TO LINK IRAN, HEZBOLLAH TO CRISIS IN VENEZUELA

During a Wednesday night interview with FOX Business host Trish Regan, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo made several statements that raised eyebrows, such as claiming that Cuba had invaded Venezuela and “taken control” of the Venezuela’s “security apparatus” and that U.S. sanctions illegally imposed on Venezuela “aren’t aimed at the Venezuelan people.”

However, the most surprising claim Pompeo made in the interview was that Hezbollah and Iran were “active” in Venezuela, presenting a national security “risk for America.”

After accusing China, Cuba and Russia of interfering with U.S. efforts to install U.S.-funded opposition figure Juan Guaidó and oust current Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro, Pompeo made the following assertion:

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Forgive me, but has this man gone absolutely bonkers, and swallowed the Koolaid, in order to make that assertion?!?!?

But I can imagine, after Pompeo's having made such a ludicrous statement, what the follow-through action is going to have to be; something in Venezuela, or an American asset overseas, will be hit with a US-generated false flag, to be blamed both on Iran and Venezuela, and off we'll go.

Pompeo and President Trump have to know that, after all the lies about US intentions overseas, coupled with the hard economic truth of why we have invaded so many countries, Americans are both war-weary, and war-skeptical.

If Pompeo stops making reference to this, perhaps it was just a lousy attempt to somehow tie Hezbollah and Iran into this destabilization in Venezuela; but if he continues harping on this, you can bet your sweet bippy that something wicked this way comes, even if the US government has to fabricate it.

Feb 09 10:44

VENEZUELA: AMERICA'S 68TH REGIME-CHANGE DISASTER

The US government has been opposed to Venezuela’s socialist revolution since the time Hugo Chavez was elected in 1998. Unbeknownst to most Americans, Chavez was well loved by poor and working class Venezuelans for his extraordinary array of social programs that lifted millions out of poverty. Between 1996 and 2010, the level of extreme poverty plummeted from 40% to 7%. The government also substantially improved healthcare and education, cutting infant mortality by half, reducing the malnutrition rate from 21% to 5% of the population and eliminating illiteracy. These changes gave Venezuela the lowest level of inequality in the region, based on its Gini coefficient.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Propaganda, economic sanctions, and low-key military destabilization; all of these are the toolcraft of US wars, most generally fought for resources of another country (Like Venezuela's most-probable regime-change in the not so distant future).

When Karl Marx observed that all wars are economic in their origin, he has been proven absolutely correct, in following all the wars which the US government has created, and in which this country has been enmeshed since World War II.

I would love to see Mike and I become citizens of any other country on this planet which doesn't indulge in war crimes, but unfortunately, we are both too broke, and far too old, to make that happen.

Feb 09 10:20

Moscow Should Heed US Admiral’s Calls for 'Offensive' Against Russia - Lawmaker

Russia should be concerned by the calls of US Chief of Naval Operations Adm. John Richardson to go on an offensive against Moscow and Beijing, Chairman of the Foreign Affairs Committee of the Russian upper house Konstantin Kosachev has stated.

"I would not regard the bravado of Chief of the Naval Operations of the US Navy Adm. John Richardson, who called for an ‘offensive,’ to show ‘more aggression' against Moscow and Beijing and generally ‘push first’ as another stupidity of another US military man. First, it is a high-ranking representative of the most powerful army in the world. Secondly, no one has disavowed his words yet", Kosachev wrote on Facebook.

Feb 09 10:16

US accuses China of preparing for WWIII: What you’re not being told

A Republican senator has accused China of preparing for World War III. Like most of Washington’s statements concerning China, the lawmaker has completely ignored the US’ role in creating such a scenario in the first place.
Just last week, Republican Senator James Inhofe of Oklahoma made the allegation that China’s military was preparing for World War III.

“It’s like you’re preparing for World War III,” he said during a Senate hearing focused on the so-called challenges presented by Russia and China. “You’re talking to our allies over there and you wonder whose side they’re going to be on.”

According to Inhofe, the US has sat back and watched as China has built its military presence in the South China Sea, turning artificial islands into potential launch pads for its military.

Feb 09 10:15

Top US Navy admiral slams $500mn railgun project as a ‘case study’ in failed innovation

A $500-million project to develop an American electromagnetic railgun, in the makings for over a decade, should be used as a failed “case study” on how not to develop new weapons systems, a top US admiral has said.

“I would say that railgun is kind of the case study that would say 'This is how innovation maybe shouldn't happen,'” the chief of naval operations, Adm. John Richardson, told the Atlantic Council. “It's been around, I think, for about 15 years, maybe 20. So ‘rapid’ doesn't come to mind when you’re talking about timeframes like that.”

Feb 09 10:14

By Threats, Sanctions, and War, Washington Rules the World

One of the most disturbing aspects of the past two years of Donald Trump foreign policy has been the assumption that decisions made by the United States are binding on the rest of the world. Apart from time of war, no other nation has ever sought to prevent other nations from trading with each other. And the United States has also uniquely sought to penalize other countries for alleged crimes that did not occur in the US and that did not involve American citizens, while also insisting that all nations must comply with whatever penalties are meted out by Washington.

Feb 09 09:49

World War III Coming? UK's Daily Express Has Doomsday Section

British tabloid Daily Express appears to have a "World War III" section on its website, and while the news topics vary, the main characters remain unchanged, obviously including Russia, Iran, and China.

Days after the US and Russia decided to leave the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty, the UK-based tabloid, Daily Express, published an article on the "safest" place to escape radiation in the event of a nuclear war. It turns out that the media outlet has a whole section dedicated to a hypothetical World War III.

Feb 09 09:44

"WTF Is Going On In Downtown LA?": Army War Drills Continue Across Los Angeles

Having started on Monday, the US Army continues its war drills across the greater Los Angeles metropolitan area through Saturday with the goal of enhancing Army Special Forces skills by "operating in urban environments", Army Special Operations Command said in a statement.

Residents around Los Angeles may hear sounds associated with the field training exercise, including helicopters and weapon simulations, according to the statement.

"The local terrain and training facilities in Los Angeles provide the Army with unique locations and simulates urban environments the service members may encounter when deployed overseas," the Army told CBS.

Feb 09 09:43

RUSSIAN NUCLEAR SUBMARINES: WEAPONS OF GLOBAL WAR

Nuclear submarines are the leading strike force of a fleet, capable of covertly controlling the expanses of the world’s oceans and quickly deploying in the required directions. They deliver unexpected and powerful strikes from the depths of the ocean on both sea and land targets.

The main striking force of the Russian Navy is nuclear submarines armed with ballistic and cruise missiles with nuclear warheads. They are constantly in various parts of the world’s oceans, ready for immediate use of their strategic weapons. Submarines, armed with cruise missiles, are aimed mainly at combating the enemy’s large surface ships and strike on the enemy’s coastal infrastructure. Torpedo nuclear submarines are used to disrupt the enemy’s underwater and surface communications and in the defense system against the underwater threat, as well as to escort surface ships and missile submarines.

Feb 09 09:40

VA Evicts Groups that Help Vets; Dog Park, Baseball Stadium, Prep School Athletic Fields, Upscale Store Parking Stay

The Los Angeles Veterans Affairs (VA) facility that illegally rents its sprawling grounds to institutions that don’t serve veterans just evicted several groups dedicated to veterans, including a nonprofit that for decades has comforted dying vets and another that helps those who are disabled.

While the VA gave the volunteer organizations the boot without offering an explanation, it continues housing a parking lot for nearby upscale shops, a university baseball stadium, a dog park for the professional dog walkers of affluent residents, and athletic fields for a fancy prep school.

Feb 09 09:38

TOP US NAVY ADMIRAL SLAMS $500MN RAILGUN PROJECT AS A ‘CASE STUDY’ IN FAILED INNOVATION

A $500-million project to develop an American electromagnetic railgun, in the makings for over a decade, should be used as a failed “case study” on how not to develop new weapons systems, a top US admiral has said.
“I would say that railgun is kind of the case study that would say 'This is how innovation maybe shouldn't happen,'” the chief of naval operations, Adm. John Richardson, told the Atlantic Council. “It's been around, I think, for about 15 years, maybe 20. So ‘rapid’ doesn't come to mind when you’re talking about timeframes like that.”

The futuristic weapon has been in development since 2005 and already cost the US taxpayer a whopping $500 million – and is not expected to enter service in the foreseeable future, if ever, the admiral admitted. Originally the Pentagon envisioned installing the completed weapon on Zumwalt-class destroyers by the mid-2020s.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

This project has "failed boondoggle" written all over it.

To spend $500 million on a project which cannot work, is an obscene waste of taxpayers' money, and this has to stop.

Shouldn't the military, and the corporations which support them, have a time and cost ratio, and if a developed weapon fails at a far earlier phase than sopping up 500 million dollars, to be abandoned, with all research saved for the next incarnation of a weapon which might have the chance of actually working?!?

Because here it is painfully clear, that there was zero congressional oversight, and no clear exit from the development of this useless concept, which would really put us ahead of Russian or Chinese military technology; and this should be the "gold standard" of any weapon created for our military, and quickly.

Feb 09 09:17

"WTF IS GOING ON IN DOWNTOWN LA?": ARMY WAR DRILLS CONTINUE ACROSS LOS ANGELES

Having started on Monday, the US Army continues its war drills across the greater Los Angeles metropolitan area through Saturday with the goal of enhancing Army Special Forces skills by "operating in urban environments", Army Special Operations Command said in a statement.

“The local terrain and training facilities in Los Angeles provide the Army with unique locations and simulates urban environments the service members may encounter when deployed overseas,” the Army told CBS.

Downtown Los Angeles residents were shocked Monday night when a fleet of Boeing A/MH-6M Little Bird and Sikorsky UH-60 Black Hawk helicopters swooped in around them.

This is not the first time residents of a major metropolitan area across the US have experienced a military exercise. For instance, in 2015, Texas residents prepared for Jade Helm 15, an army training exercise which took place in multiple states.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

The latter possibility makes the most sense; And I say this, because there are many things about to fail, economically, and socially, that might get people protesting to the point of riots which, of course, would have to be put down "with extreme prejudice" by our military, even if it means killing their own citizens.

Feb 08 14:13

US Admiral Wants To 'Push First' Against Russian Ships - Reports

Washington has sent several ships to the Black Sea following an incident in the Kerch Strait, when Russian border patrol boats forcibly stopped several Ukrainian military vessels that had violated the Russian maritime border and refused to follow the patrol's orders.

The commander of the US Navy, Admiral John Michael Richardson, has come up with an unexpected suggestion in terms of proactive measures to counter Russia in the Mediterranean and Black Sea, Newsweek reported. When asked at the Atlantic Council in Washington on 6 February about the strategy against "perceived aggressions" from Russia, Richardson reportedly suggested that instead of responding to Moscow's actions, the US should actually "push first" in a number of areas.

Feb 08 10:13

Audit: Pentagon at Risk of Botching $6 Billion Effort to Give Afghan Troops Black Hawk Helicopters

The Pentagon is at risk of mismanaging yet another multi-billion project in Afghanistan — a modernization program intended to equip the Afghan Air Forces (AAF) with 159 state-of-the-art Black Hawk helicopters as part of efforts to address capability gaps, a U.S. watchdog agency reported Tuesday.

In an audit of the program, the U.S. Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction (SIGAR) noted that the estimated cost of providing the helicopters between 2017 and 2023 varies from $5.75 billion to approximately $7 billion in American taxpayer funds — a figure that covers procuring and sustaining the aircraft as well as training pilots and crewmembers.

SIGAR warned that there will not be enough Afghan pilots or engineers trained to fly and maintain the aircraft by the time the war-ravaged country receives the helicopters.

Feb 08 10:10

Death and valor on a warship doomed by its own Navy.

The failures of basic seamanship deeply embarrassed the Navy. Both warships belonged to the vaunted 7th Fleet — the most powerful armada in the world and one of the most important commands in the defense of the United States from nuclear attack.

ProPublica reconstructed the Fitzgerald’s journey, relying on more than 13,000 pages of confidential Navy investigative records, public reports, and interviews with scores of Fitzgerald crew members, current and former senior Navy officers, and maritime experts.

The review revealed neglect by Navy leadership, serious mistakes by officers — and extraordinary acts of valor and endurance by the crew.

The Fitzgerald’s captain selected an untested team to steer the ship at night. He ordered the crew to speed through shipping lanes filled with cargo ships and fishing vessels to free up time to train his sailors the next day. At the time of the collision, he was asleep in his cabin.

Feb 08 09:37

Fascinating animation shows every single bomb the US-led coalition has dropped on ISIS

A fascinating new video has documented every bomb dropped on Islamic State by the US-led coalition forces.

The animation shows the location of every single air strike in Iraq and Syria between August 2014 and December 2018.

All 32,000 bombs dropped have been plotted and marked on a graphic, showing where the strikes targeted during the fiercest periods of aerial bombardment.

The graphic shows that the first 185 air strikes, up until September 22, 2014, were dropped in Iraq, but by October 2, 84 strikes were made on Syrian land.

After a year of aerial bombardment a total of 3,930 bombs were dropped in Iraq and 2,425 on Syria.

Feb 08 09:16

Inside the Secretive US Air Campaign In Somalia

Halimo Mohamed Abdi said the blast broke both her hips, left shrapnel embedded in her thigh, and caused terrible burns that cost her both breasts. Before she lost consciousness, she told me, she saw three boys—ages 9, 10, and 16—die in the explosion, which occurred at night in a field outside Bariire, a village 30 miles west of the Somali capital of Mogadishu. She also said the strike came from the sky and that afterward she had to be hospitalized for three months.

When Abdi was finally able to leave the ward, she found her house in ruins and 25 of her goats dead. Now she lives in Salama camp, one of the 996 squalid settlements lining the 20-mile road that runs from Afgooye to Mogadishu. The camps are filled with tens of thousands of Somalis who have fled American air strikes and the fighting between government militias and Al Shabab, the extremist group linked to Al Qaeda.

Feb 08 09:09

Russia to US: Destroy Tomahawk launchpads & attack drones to return to INF compliance

The US was in breach of the INF treaty for years, the Russia’s defense ministry told the summoned US diplomat, calling on the US to destroy cruise missile launchpads, target-missiles and attack drones to return to INF compliance.
The Ministry of Defense (MOD) summoned the US military attaché in Moscow on Wednesday to hand him the treaty-related memo.

The Russian side suggested that the Americans “return to strict compliance” with the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty before it expires in six months.

Feb 08 08:50

Future German Leader Calls for EU Army to Avoid Being ‘Plaything’ of U.S., China, Russia

The woman largely expected to take over as chancellor of Germany has echoed calls by her mentor Angela Merkel and French ally Emmanuel Macron for a “European army” to avoid becoming a “plaything” of Russia, China, and the United States on the global stage.

Dr Merkel’s successor as leader of the Christian Democratic Union (CDU) party Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer (also referred to as AKK) made the comments on Tuesday during a speech in the EU capital Brussels where she outlined her party’s campaign themes ahead of May’s European Parliament elections.

Stressing the idea of the “Europe of security,” Ms Kramp-Karrenbauer said Brussels must push forward with a common defence policy, which “must someday also include a European army.”

Feb 07 18:30

Russia Summons US Diplomat Over INF: "Destroy Tomahawk Launch Pads And Attack Drones"

Russia has again slammed the United States for being in breach of the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty (INF) after the US announced last Friday that it's suspending all obligations under the treaty in 180 days, during which time Moscow till has a chance to return to compliance. But this week in an apparent continuing tit-for-tat blame game, the Russian Ministry of Defense (MoD) summoned the US military attaché in Moscow to issue its own ultimatum.

The MoD reportedly told the US diplomatic representative that the US is in breach, and that it could return to compliance through elimination of its cruise missile launchpads and attack drones — the latter which the Russians said fit the definition of a “land-based cruise missile” under a different form, in accord with the Reagan-era deal.

The message was delivered on Wednesday via a treaty-related memo, the contents of which were first reported by RT as follows:

Webmaster's Commentary: 

I hope the Russian government is not holding its collective breath, that the US leadership will allow that to happen; but the US trashing this agreement, by leaving it, will lead to a huge arms race, by countries other than those which currently have this kind of weapons technology.

Feb 07 16:47

VENEZUELA - U.S. AID GAMBIT FAILS - WAR PLANS LACK SUPPORT

The opposition in Venezuela will probably use access to that 'frozen' money to buy weapons and to create an army of mercenaries to fight a 'civil' war against the government and its followers. Like in Syria U.S. special forces or some CIA 'contractors' will be eager to help. The supply line for such a war would most likely run through Colombia. If, like 2011 in Syria, a war on the ground is planned it will likely begin in the cities near that border.

The U.S. is using the pretext of 'delivering humanitarian aid' from Columbia to Venezuela to undermine the government and to establish a supply line for further operations. It is another attempt to pull the military onto the coup plotter's side:

[I]f the trucks do get across, the opposition can present itself as an answer to Venezuela’s chronic suffering, while Mr. Maduro will appear to have lost control of the country’s borders. That could accelerate defections from the ruling party and the military.

Feb 07 15:59

World War 3 WARNING: Russia, US and France launch nuclear-capable missiles HOURS APART

RUSSIA, the United States and France have test-launched nuclear-capable missiles within hours of one another as fears rise of a return to a Cold War-era arms race amid the abandonment of the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty.

Feb 07 14:20

Pompeo Claims Hezbollah "Active In Venezuela" To Justify Possible US Intervention

Two weeks ago, when remarking sarcastically about the upcoming "requirement" for a US military presence in or around Venezuela where the situation is increasingly looking like a replay of events in Syria pitting the US and "western powers" on one side and Russia and China (and Turkey) on the other, we said that it's only a matter of time before ISIS made a dramatic appearance in Latin America.

zerohedge
@zerohedge
Time for ISIS to make a dramatic appearance in Latin America

We thought we were joking.

It turns out the joke was on us, because - in an apparent failure to come up with an even remotely original narrative for another imminent American intervention - US secretary of state Mike Pompeo said on Wednesday night that, drumroll, "Hezbollah has active cells in Venezuela." Well, we were wrong about ISIS at least.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Forgive me, but has Pompeo had any physical, or mental, impairment, which could cause him to make a statement like this?!? White house, what the hell is this guy trying to do?!?

I hope to God (and I am NOT kidding on this) that the White House did overnights on this, found it pulled horrifically for the Administration, and thought the better of this.

Unfortunately, just because a strategy would be the most him-fistedly, pig-headedly stupid thing an Administration could do, is no guarantee it will not do it.

So..... drumroll, please:?!? Watch for a Hezbollah cell in Venezuela allegedly do something awful, to which which the US must, on the most humanitarian of grounds they can conjure, fix by invading the country.

If this is how those in the bowels of power in CD are thinking of regime changing Venezuela, this government, and the world, are all in trouble, and big time.

And why do I say this?!?

Because of the following development:

Russia has embedded 440 Spetznaz Special Forces in Venezuela late January.

Feb 07 12:12

Leaked Wikileaks Doc Reveals US Military Use of IMF, World Bank as “Unconventional” Weapons

This “U.S. coup manual,” recently highlighted by WikiLeaks, serves as a reminder that the so-called “independence” of such financial institutions as The World Bank and IMF is an illusion and that they are among the many “financial weapons” regularly used by the U.S. government to bend countries to its will.

Feb 07 11:43

Ret. Gen. Dennis Laich to Newsmax TV: Should Women Register For Draft?

The government might have to consider requiring women to register for the selective service when they turn 18 — just as men do — in the name of equality, retired Army Major Gen. Dennis Laich told Newsmax TV.

Laich spoke with John Bachman on Newsmax Now about a government project he's working on that looks at the future of the U.S. military and its force of volunteers.

"If women are not required to register, then men will say well wait a minute, in the interest of equality, why should we? And if that happens and it's a successful argument, we'll see selective service go by the boards. Or at least run the risk of it," Laich said.

"And if that happens, we will impair national security because never in the history of our nation have we had a mass mobilization without conscription."

Feb 07 11:33

MOSCOW REVEALS: US Plans To Deploy NUCLEAR Weapons In Europe By 2020 Aimed At Russia

The United States plans to begin deploying modified nuclear weapons in Europe in the first half of 2020, said Anatoly Sidorov, UNTSC chief of the Collective Security Treaty Organization.

“The US intentions are to further exacerbate the international situation is demonstrated by its advanced aviation nuclear weapons mass production program, approved at the end of 2018,” Sidorov told a news conference.

He added that “the deployment of these weapons at Belgian, Dutch, German, Italian and Turkish air bases, where about 200 previous generation unmanned aerial bombs are stored, is expected to begin in the first half of 2020.”

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