Peter Korzun at GlobalResearch
Poland Will Do it for Us? Poland Acquires First Strike Capability to Pose Threat to Russia
It should be noted that quite often the most interesting arms contracts escape media attention. That’s how it was in 2016. Signing a multi-billion-dollar military aid package between the United States and Israel and the subsequent White House approval for long-awaited fighter sales to the Middle East hit the radar screen.
In late September, the US approved the sales of Boeing fighters worth a total of around $7 billion to Kuwait and Qatar. First mooted around two years ago, the deals had been held up by the US government due to Israeli concerns and in order to smooth the way for nuclear talks with Iran.
The same month, a $38-billion Israeli arms package over the next 10 years – the largest of its kind ever – was finalized and signed.
The news about those contacts was a real scoop hitting the headlines of all mainstream media outlets. In late November, the State Department approved another transaction- the acquisition of 70 AGM-158B JASSM-ER (extended range) missiles for Poland. The deal undeservedly failed to attract much attention. In fact, it matters much and changes a lot.
The prospects for the acquisition of the extended range version were discussed as far back as 2014. The US obviously procrastinated due to political considerations. The decision to make the deal go through makes Poland the first state outside the United States to acquire the JASSM-ER.
In 2014, Poland signed a contract to procure the JASSM AGM-158A version for its F-16C/D jets. The stealth missile is designed to destroy ground targets at distances 370+km (230 mi). As of 2014, the JASSM had also entered service in Australia and Finland.
The 370 km is a great range for the purpose of self-defense. But Poland badly wanted strategic conventional first strike capability. With the JASSM-ER deal reached, its dream has come true. Using a more efficient engine and larger fuel volume in an airframe with the .....
#cdnpoli #tcot #TOpoli No intelligence required 2 get jobs in CIA n FBI.. "4Chan Claims To Have Fabricated Anti-Tr.. https://t.co/D7TQXwDjRp— MariaS Nunes (@Dodocanspell) January 11, 2017
Charles Hugh-Smith at ZeroHedge (Plenty of informative graphs)
Dear Self-Proclaimed "Progressives"... You're As Evil As The Neocon-Neoliberal Empire You've Enabled
Submitted by Charles Hugh-Smith via OfTwoMinds blog,
Sorry, pal, you're evil. Self-righteous indignation counts for nothing in the strict accounting of real progressivism.
Dear Self-Proclaimed "Progressive": I love you, man, but it has become necessary to intervene in your self-destruction. Your ideological blinders and apologies for the Establishment's Neocon-Neoliberal Empire are not just destroying your credibility, they're destroying the nation and everywhere the Empire intervenes....
...You embraced the Corporate Media's absurd "fake news" witch-hunt, when the biggest purveyors of fake news/Imperial Propaganda are the "liberal" media you unhesitatingly believe with all your heart because it reinforces your sense of moral superiority. Never mind that the mainstream "liberal" media is owned by corporations that are in bed with the Establishment and the Empire.
You were silent when your "progressive" president engaged in a global Murder, Inc., and your former secretary of state bragged "we came, we saw, he died."Your sputtering excuses for Imperial over-reach, extra-judicial murder and the destruction and displacement of entire populations is a travesty of a mockery of a sham of real Progressivism.....
Mannequins w/covered faces in rebel-held #Syria. Its a foreign funded MB uprising not a popular rev. And u wonder why Syrians support Assad? pic.twitter.com/HgSB78JS1s— Walid (@walid970721) January 7, 2017
Ben Norton at Alternet
U.S.-backed Saudi War in Yemen Fuels 'Largest Food Security Emergency in the World'
U.S.-backed bombing has killed thousands of Yemenis and pushed millions to the brink of famine.
A prominent famine monitor created by the U.S. government has acknowledged that the U.S.-backed war in Yemen has fueled the "largest food security emergency in the world." And acording to its analysis, the catastrophic situation only continues to get worse.
Since March 2015, the U.S. has supported a Saudi-led coalition that has bombed Yemen, the poorest country in the Middle East. With tens of billions of dollars worth of American and British weapons, more than 1,000 refueling sorties by U.S. planes and intelligence and guidance from the American and British militaries, Saudi Arabia has carried out thousands of airstrikes, at least one-third of which have struck civilian sites.
The Western-backed, Saudi-led coalition has also intentionally targeted food production and the agricultural sector in its bombing campaign in Yemen, in what a leading expert has described as a "scorched-earth strategy."....
Lizzie Phelan on Israel's attack on Syria's military airport
Brandon Turbeville at ActivistPost
Grand Mufti of Syria dismantles religious crisis lie
While most Americans are force fed propaganda and misinformation about virtually every country outside their own borders (including the country in which they live) Syria has been a particular target of the corporate press. In fact, so much propaganda and lies have been spread regarding Syria and the crisis unfolding there that the average person glued to Fake News outlets like CNN, FOX, and MSNBC could scarcely recite one fact about the country correctly.
One such propaganda narrative is the lie that the Syrian crisis is sectarian in nature and that the country was plagued by religious tension and division before the war began. Neither of these claims were the case and, five years into the NATO imperialist war effort, Syrians are as united as they have ever been.
Americans under the false impression of Syria and Syrians as well as religion in Syria might be surprised to hear from the religious leaders of the country who have denounced the violence and who have expressed nothing but compassion, understanding, and unity with Muslims, Christians, Jews and those of all other faiths....
Top Opposition Figure Nawaf al-Bashir Repents and Returns to Syria
Sheikh Nawaf al-Bashir, the highest figure in the western fabricated opposition in Syria, the chief of Baggara Tribe in northeast Syria, returned to Damascus and declared his loyalty to the Syrian people, the Syrian leadership and praised the Syrian Arab Army and put himself under the command of the Syrian president Dr. Bashar Al-Assad.
With 1.2 million tribesmen and women in his Der Ezzor base, he left them behind and joined the ranks of makeshift opposition individuals convinced by Qatari officials that the days of the ‘regime’ are numbered and if they defect now they’ll reserve a place for them in the future Syria. Some were bribed with tens of millions of dollars, others were seduced with leading post-Assad posts, and the vast majority who couldn’t be bought or deceived were intimidated, only few fell for any of those.....
Venezuelan court overrides opposition parliament’s ‘impeachment’ of President Maduro
Venezuela’s Supreme Court has annulled parliament’s resolution aimed at ousting President Nicolas Maduro. The Court ordered them to stop the “political trial” against the president, since it is not within its constitutional authority.
In a statement issued Monday, the high court reaffirmed its position previously expressed in ruling number 948 of the Constitutional Chamber dated November 15, 2016, in which it ordered the country’s parliament to “refrain from continuing the procedure of declaring ‘political responsibility’ against the president of the Republic,” as cited by AFP.
It also ordered the legislature to refrain from making decisions that are outside its legislative authority.....
#cdnpoli #tcot #TOpoli A "must read" https://t.co/IYZf7kjHMJ for "progressives" pic.twitter.com/gi8urL9muI— MariaS Nunes (@Dodocanspell) January 10, 2017
Robert David Steele at GlobalResearch
The Soft Coup Collapses – CIA Bluffing, Russia Did Not Hack, Blackmail Revealed – What Next?
CIA was bluffing, produced no evidence – Russians did not “hack” the election. Is this the beginning of the end of the Deep State in the USA? Can Trump clean house & wage peace?....
....Below is my formal evaluation of the five deep failures by the US IC in this report – it is a political report lacking in professional merit.
01 The report fails to provide evidence against the Russian state. The report assumes, against all publicly known information, that Guccifer, a Romanian taxi driver with a track record of success despite antiquated equipment, was a controlled asset of the Russian state. The report, in a most unprofessional, clearly partisan political manner, does not mention any of the many credible sources clearly stating that insiders did the leaking.
In UPDATE 17 of my 30 December 2016 post I list and link to 29 different individuals – including Barack Obama as saying the Russians did not hack the election. When Obama said this (in November 2016) he was not aware that the Deep State planned to persist with the narrative in an attempt to overthrow the Electoral College with false testimony – the equivalent in the USA of jury tampering, a very serious offense. They might have succeeded, had many of us not spoken up and reinforced the common sense of the majority of electors, who ultimately realized there was no evidence being presented.
02 The report is completely lacking in responsible context, which is to say, it deliberately represents Russia as the only state engaged in cyber-espionage and information operations (IO) intended to influence the outcome of the US election. The report is devoid of much needed attention to the far greater covert operations of Israel, inclusive of collaborative operations with Facebook and Google that censored critical commentary and manipulated search results so that searches for Clinton + Crime become Clinton + Love and searches for Trump became Trump + Hitler. Eric Schmidt and Marc Zuckerberg have much to answer for, as do the Rothchilds – particularly Lynn Rothschild – as well as George Soros and other Jewish influencers including those who stole vast sums from Russia. The report naturally fails to observe that the National Security Agency (NSA) has been spying on (and to some extent blackmailing) many if not all Members of the US Congress as well as President Barack Obama, while CIA has been actively spying on selected Members and selected computers, an activity for which Director John Brennan was censured in September 2014.
03 There is no discussion whatever .....
From AgaKhanMuseum, Toronto
A Pearl in the Desert: Palmyra’s Multicultural Society
Thursday, January 26, 1 pm
Free with Museum Admission
Join archaeologist and Ancient Middle East specialist Clemens Reichel in an illustrated journey through the magnificent architecture and rich multicultural history of Palmyra....
#cdnpoli #tcot #TOpoli So..a member of the Deep State (many of whom r traitors, IMO) is sending a msg 2a patriot? https://t.co/fMWc6k7JXa— MariaS Nunes (@Dodocanspell) January 15, 2017
Pam Martens and Russ Martens at WallStreetOnParade
Here’s How Goldman Sachs Became the Overlord of the Trump Administration
During his political campaign, Donald Trump repeatedly railed against Wall Street with a specific focus on Goldman Sachs. .....
...How did a candidate who repeatedly demonized Goldman Sachs as the poster child for a corrupt establishment that owned Washington end up with Goldman Sachs’ progeny filling every post that even tangentially has the odor of money or global finance? One answer is family ties; another may be something darker.
Trump’s non-stop nominations and appointments of Goldman Sachs alumni have left his supporters stunned. Trump nominated Steven Mnuchin, a 17-year veteran of Goldman Sachs to be his Treasury Secretary. Stephen Bannon, another former Goldman Sachs banker, was named by Trump as his Chief Strategist in the White House. The sitting President of Goldman Sachs, Gary Cohn, has been named by Trump as Director of the National Economic Council, which, according to its website, coordinates “policy-making for domestic and international economic issues.” Last week, in a move that stunned even Wall Street, Trump nominated a Goldman Sachs outside lawyer, Jay Clayton of Sullivan & Cromwell, to serve as Wall Street’s top cop as Chairman of the Securities and Exchange Commission. Adding to the slap in the face to Trump’s working class supporters, Clayton’s wife currently works as a Vice President at Goldman Sachs.
But the Goldman Sachs’ ties don’t stop there.
When Alexander Blankfein, .....
Nick Turse at TomDispatch
Tomgram: Nick Turse, Special Ops, Shadow Wars, and the Golden Age of the Gray Zone
Don’t think the fad for “draining the swamp” began on the campaign trail with Donald Trump. It didn’t, although the “swamp” to be drained in the days after the 9/11 attacks wasn’t in Washington; it was a global one. Of course, that’s ancient history, more than 15 years old. Who even remembers that moment, though we still live with its fallout -- with the hundreds of thousands dead and the millions of refugees, with Islamophobia and ISIS, with President-elect Trump, retired Lieutenant General Michael Flynn, and so much more?
In the never-ending wake of one of the most disastrous wars in American history, the 2003 invasion and occupation of Iraq, it’s hard to imagine any world but the one we have, which makes it easy to forget what the top officials of the Bush administration thought they would accomplish with their “Global War on Terror.” Who remembers now just how quickly and enthusiastically they leapt into the project of draining that global swamp of terror groups (while taking out the Taliban and then “decapitating” the Iraqi regime of Saddam Hussein)? Their grandiose goal: an American imperium in the Greater Middle East (and later assumedly a global Pax Americana). They were, in other words, geopolitical dreamers of the first order.
Barely a week after 9/11, Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld was already swearing that the global campaign to come would "drain the swamp they live in." Only a week later, at a NATO meeting, Deputy Secretary of Defense Paul Wolfowitz insisted that, "while we'll try to find every snake in the swamp, the essence of the strategy is draining the swamp [itself]." By the following June, in a commencement address at West Point, President George W. Bush would speak proudly of his administration’s desire to drain that swamp of “terror cells” in a staggering “60 or more countries.”
Like Washington for Donald Trump, it proved .....
George Galloway on Israeli spy in UK
#cdnpoli #tcot #TOpoli Used 2dislike GGalloway when I was hobnobbing naively w pro-Zionists. Not any more, on both https://t.co/Zxyw3Po93w— MariaS Nunes (@Dodocanspell) January 13, 2017
Thousands mark Jesus baptism at historic Jordan site
Thousands of Catholic Christians attend special mass at the Jordan River, in annual pilgrimage to the site where many believe Jesus was baptised.
AMMAN - Thousands of Catholic Christians attended a special mass Friday on the Jordanian side of the Jordan River in an annual pilgrimage to the site where many believe Jesus was baptised.
Before the ceremony started, dozens of priests walked to the river and filled jugs with water as scouts played traditional music.
The priests were led by Archbishop Pierbattista Pizzaballa, apostolic administrator of the Latin Patriarch of Jerusalem.
More than 4,000 pilgrims packed the "church of the baptism", west of the Jordanian capital Amman and near the Dead Sea, a photographer said.
During the ceremony the priests dipped their fingers in the water they drew from the Jordan River and used it to bless the congregation, emulating the baptism of Jesus....
Real News Network talks to Rania Khalek
The Deep State Versus Donald Trump - New Smears And The Ukrainian Connection
UPDATED (3x) (at end of original)
As remarked on January 6:
When Hillary Clinton was defeated in the U.S. presidential election the relevant powers launched a campaign to delegitimize the President elect Donald Trump.
The ultimate aim of the cabal is to kick him out of office and have a reliable replacement, like the Vice-President elect Pence, take over. Should that not be possible it is hoped that the delegitimization will make it impossible for Trump to change major policy trajectories especially in foreign policy. A main issue here is the reorientation of the U.S. military complex and its NATO proxies from the war of terror towards a direct confrontation with main powers like Russia and China.
The deep state campaign against Trump opened new grounds today with the publication of completely fake and thereby unverifiable anonymous assertions which include the smear that Trump had some fun in a Moscow hotel and that Russian secret services is using that to manipulate him.
Like many smears against Trump via proxies of the Clinton presidential campaign these new ones seem to origin from Ukraine related sources and Ukrainian "nationalist" (aka fascist) putsch supporters.
The new assertions about Trump come in 35 pages of "reports" by an anonymous (claimed) former British intelligence operator working for a private U.S. company with dates ranging from June 20 2016 to December 13 2016. They say that Russia has some tapes of Trump watching sex games in 2013, they claim that Trump campaign officials coordinated the Clinton campaign leaks with Russia and that the Russian President Putin was highly involved in all of this.
Here is how the claimed former intelligence operator typically describes his sources in these "reports":.............
George Galloway on Trump and Russia
F William Engdahl at Journal Neo
Is Trump the Back Door Man for Henry A. Kissinger & Co?
The term Back Door Man has several connotations. In the original blues song written by Willie Dixon, it refers to a man having an affair with a married woman, using the back door to flee before the husband comes home. During the Gerald Ford Presidency, Back Door Man was applied to Dick Cheney as Ford’s White House Chief of Staff and his “skills” at getting what he wanted through opaque means. More and more as Cabinet choices are named, it looks like the entire Trump Presidency project is emerging as Henry A. Kissinger’s “Back Door Man,” in the Cheney meaning of the term.
Long forgotten is Trump’s campaign rhetoric about draining the swamp. In October during his campaign candidate Trump issued a press release stating, “Decades of special interest dealing must come to an end. We have to break the cycle of corruption…It is time to drain the swamp in Washington, D.C…That is why I am proposing a package of ethics reforms to make our government honest once again.”
So far, the President-elect has already named more billionaires to cabinet and other top posts than any other president in US history–Betsy DeVos of the AmWay fortune as Education Secretary, Wilbur Ross as Commerce Secretary, Linda McMahon as Small Business Administrator, and Vincent Viola, as Army Secretary. That’s not including Trump himself as a putative billionaire.
Then in terms of the vested special interests of Wall Street, Goldman Sachs has a huge power in the new Administration. Goldman Sachs partner Steven Mnuchin is Trump’s nominee for US Treasury Secretary. Goldman Sachs President Gary Cohn will be his top White House Economic Adviser. Anthony Scaramucci, Presidential Transition Team Executive Committee member, is a former Goldman Sachs banker as well as Steve Bannon, Trump’s chief strategist and Senior Counselor.
We add to that assemblage no fewer than four US military generals representing the most corrupt military industrial complex in world history: as Secretary of Defense retired General James “Mad Dog” Mattis, Board member since retiring of major defense contractor General Dynamics; retired Lt. General Mike Flynn, with his own consulting firm, as his National Security Adviser and retired General John F. Kelly as Secretary of Homeland Security.
Add to this collection the naming of Rex Tillerson the CEO of ExxonMobil, the largest oil multinational of the United States, as Secretary of State; the ex-Governor of Texas, America’s largest oil producing state, Rick Perry, as Secretary of Energy, along with pro-shale energy Oklahoma Attorney General, Scott Pruitt to be head of the Environmental Protection Agency, and certain dramatic economic policy flips begin to emerge compared with the previous hapless Presidency.....
#cdnpoli #TOpoli Liberals go a-tricking. What else is new?! Today's cabinet shuffle https://t.co/0204GuxzXw— MariaS Nunes (@Dodocanspell) January 10, 2017
Gareth Porter at ConsortiumNews
Pushing for a Lucrative New Cold War
The New Cold War promises untold riches for the Military-Industrial Complex, causing hawks inside the Obama administration to push for more hostilities with Russia, as in a Syrian case study dissected by Gareth Porter for Truthdig...
Airstrikes by the United States and its allies against two Syrian army positions Sept. 17 killed at least 62 Syrian troops and wounded dozens more. The attack was quickly treated as a non-story by the U.S. news media; U.S. Central Command (CENTCOM) claimed the strikes were carried out in the mistaken belief that Islamic State forces were being targeted, and the story disappeared....
Dr Ron Paul
Will Obama’s ‘Good War’ in Afghanistan Continue?
Last week, as the mainstream media continued to obsess over the CIA’s evidence-free claim that the Russians hacked the presidential election, President Obama quietly sent 300 US Marines back into Afghanistan’s Helmand Province. This is the first time in three years that the US military has been sent into that conflict zone, and it represents a final failure of Obama’s Afghanistan policy. The outgoing president promised that by the end of his second term, the US military would only be present in small numbers and only on embassy duty. But more than 8,000 US troops will remain in Afghanistan as he leaves office.
When President Obama was first elected he swore that he would end the US presence in Iraq (the “bad” war) and increase US presence in Afghanistan (the “good” war). He ended up increasing troops to both wars, while the situation in each country continued to deteriorate.
Why are the Marines needed in the Helmand Province? Because although the foolish and counterproductive 15-year US war in Afghanistan was long ago lost, Washington cannot face this fact. Last year the Taliban controlled 20 percent of the province. This year they control 85 percent of the province. So billions more must be spent and many more lives will be lost.
Will these 300 Marines somehow achieve what the 2011 peak of 100,000 US soldiers was not able to achieve? Will this last push “win” the war? Hardly! The more the president orders military action in Iraq and Afghanistan, the worse it gets. In 2016, for example, President Obama dropped 1,337 bombs on Afghanistan, a 40 percent increase from 2015. According to the United Nations, in 2016 there were 2,562 conflict-related civilian deaths and 5,835 injuries. And the Taliban continues to score victories over the Afghan puppet government.
The interventionists in Washington continue to run our foreign policy regardless of who is elected. They push for wars, they push for regime change, then they push for billions to reconstruct the bombed-out countries. ........