Wednesday, 16 August 2017

QATARI-SUPPORTED TERRORISTS LOSE GROUND TO SAA IN DAMASCUS; ISIS FALLING APART EVERYWHERE

Qatar continues to use its vast stores of money to sponsor terrorism in Syria.  It is, therefore, hard to understand why Iran has not been able to convince the derelicts in Doha to stop their insane and self-destructive policies aimed at “regime change” in Damascus.  With the Saudis leading a coalition of Gulf countries-cum-Egypt that aims to end Qatari connivance with Turkey and the Muslim Brotherhood,  one would think that Iran could exploit Qatar’s isolation to bring it around to a more rational pattern of behavior.
Turkey’s rapid move to assist Qatar paralleled Iran’s maneuver to frustrate Saudi Arabia, its chief nemesis in the Gulf.  Turkey is led by a card-carrying MB member, Erdoghan, who jealously protects the interests of Sunni fundamentalist anti-primogeniture movements like the MB, a position not terribly unlike Iran’s anti-royalist attitudes.  But, that’ where all the similarities end.  Iran is committed to a full liberation of Palestine while the Turks are lingering in a world of Zionist appeasement.  Iran is working toward building a Shi’ite Crescent across the northern Near East while Turkey is planning to annex whole parts of it in an effort to interdict Kurkish plans for a new republic on its southern border.
This all makes for great subject matter for rap sessions in college on the weekends.  However, it also represents an intractable problem for those trying to end the carnage in both Syria and Iraq.
Witness events in the South-Eastern Ghoutaa.  Yesterday, the Qatari-funded and armed “Faylaq Al-Rahmaan” initiated a large-scale assault on SAA positions in the area of Waadi ‘Ayn Turma.  The major assault concentrated on the villages of Al-Muhammadiyya and Aftarees and in the area of Al-Lahma Company.  The terrorists came at Syrian soldiers with new TOW anti-tank missile launchers acquired by the terrorist group through MOK, or the formerly U.S.-led terrorist supporting command-control HQ in Jordan.  Their operation was called “Wa Laa Tahzanoo” or “And don’t be sad”, if you can believe it.  ولا تحزنوا
The TOWs have been rendered useless by Syria’s own domestically developed Saraab 1 Interception Device now found on all SAA tanks.  The device sends out signals to the anti-tank rockets toppling them from their course.  It has had a revolutionary effect on SAA combat operations all over the country.  And, now, with the U.S. backing off its support for all terrorist groups, coupled with Saudi Arabia’s shift in policy over Syria, the terrorists are finding the combat conditions increasingly perilous.  And so, yesterday, Faylaq Al-Rahmaan lost 29 of its rodents with over 120 wounded, some critically.
With terrorists complaining openly about the way the attack was conducted, there is chatter being picked up indicating a complete breakdown in confidence in the group’s leader, ‘Abdul-Naasser Shameer,  a former captain in the Syrian Army who deserted and joined the terrorism inflicted upon Syria sometime in 2012.  Moreover, Faylaq Al-Rahmaan is not a part of the “De-Escalation Agreements” worked out in Astana, Kazakhstan, or by Messrs. Putin and Trump during their tete-a-tete at the last G-20 Summit.
As we wrote before, U.S. CIA terrorist-enablers are leaving the sinking ship, taking back trays of Baklava and souvenir backgammon tables manufactured in Damascus.  What is left behind is a skeleton crew of “independent contractors”, mostly former spooks and mid-level retired army officers who receive their paychecks from Qatar.  This will not augur well for the remnant terrorist groups in the Ghoutaa.  Especially since the Syrian Army has now eradicated the ISIS presence in Al-Suwaydaa` leaving close to 15,000 troops free to return to the Damascus Front with thousands of Iranian-trained volunteers to keep Al-Suwaydaa` Ratten-Rein.
I frankly believe that the operation at Waadi ‘Ayn Turma was meant to please the Qataris – to keep the Qatari money flowing by showing that the group was still operational.  In looking at the way the group carried out its mission, it would seem it had no distinct purpose other than to kill as many SAA soldiers as possible.  As it turned out, no Syrian soldiers were killed in the fighting.  This is probably due to the air force response at key locations which blunted the assault and forced the terrorist rats to cede over more territory in the farm areas to the advancing Syrian Army.  Once can see why the leader of Faylaq Al-Rahmaan might be heading for the chopping block very soon.
ISIS is in even worse shape.  The SAAF pounded them into mush in the Qalamoon area, specifically at Al-Hasheeshaat Heights, Al-Jaraajeer, Qaarra foothills, Meera Crossing, Martabiyya and Shumays where command-control centers were destroyed.  ISIS took a big hit too in Hama, where the SAA liberated all hilltops around the town of Salba.  One would think that somebody in that group could read the handwriting on the walls.
Read more

River to Sea Uprooted Palestinian   
The views expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of the Blog!

Mad Dog Trump Includes Venezuela into List of Nations Most Likely to Be Attacked by United States

President Trump Includes Venezuela into List of Nations Most Likely to Be Attacked by United States
On August 11, US President Donald Trump threatened a military intervention in Venezuela. «I’m not going to rule out a military option», Trump declared to reporters in Bedminster, N.J. «This is our neighbor. We’re all over the world, and we have troops all over the world, in places that are very, very far away. Venezuela is not very far away, and the people are suffering, and they’re dying. We have many options for Venezuela, including a possible military option, if necessary», he explained. This is an unexpected dramatic escalation of Washington’s response to Venezuela’s internal political crisis.
Venezuela is sliding into turmoil, riven by widespread hungerskyrocketing inflation, and street violence. The situation aggravated even more after opposition forces looted weapons from a military base after the authority went from the opposition-controlled congress to a new legislative body. 17 countries denounced the inauguration of an all-powerful new constituent assembly loyal to President Maduro but many Latin American countries, such as Cuba, the Dominican Republic, Nicaragua, El Salvador and Bolivia, support Maduro’s government and recognize the legislative body elected on August 4. Despite the differences of opinion, no Latin American state has ever mentioned the use of force as an option.
Since taking office, the Trump administration has been ramping up pressure on Venezuela. The officials have previously said that «all options are on the table» to penalize Maduro and his government, including import or export bans on Venezuelan oil or sanctions on the state-run oil company, PDVSA. The administration has been critical of Maduro’s moves to consolidate power, calling the recent election of a new constituent assembly as «illegitimate» and describing the Venezuelan president as a «dictator». After the vote on establishing a constituent assembly in Venezuela, the US Treasury Department sanctioned 30 Venezuelans, including President Maduro, freezing their US assets, banning US travel and prohibiting Americans from doing business with them.
President Trump has refused to talk on the phone with Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro till «democracy was restored». Media contributes into instigating sentiments against the Venezuelan government. The Boston Globe’s editorial titled Don’t Let Democracy Die in Venezuela says, «Sanctions imposed so far are not working. The United States, and the rest of the world, must send Maduro the message that they will not allow him to hijack his own country».
Marine Corps expeditionary force is the only one who could send such as message. The Pentagon said the military was ready to support efforts to protect US citizens and America’s national interests. The United States has a long history of regime toppling in Latin America, with the military and the CIA operating behind the scenes. Vice President Mike Pence is visiting Colombia, Argentina, Chile and Panama on August 13–18, 2017. The trip is a chance to announce further steps on Venezuela and ramp up support for future actions.
Why Venezuela? After all, Latin America does not seem appear to top the administration’s priorities’ list. In June, State Secretary Rex Tillerson skipped a crucial Organization of American States’ meeting devoted to the situation in Venezuela. Instead, the Secretary focused on the mission to ease tensions in the Persian Gulf.
Venezuela is not Syria, there is no civil war going on and no refugees rush en masse to leave the country. It’s not North Korea or Iran. There are no plans to develop a nuclear potential. President Maduro still enjoys substantial support. The nation is divided, not all Venezuelans are ready to greet US servicemen as liberators. What is important – the Latin American governments that criticize President Maduro will not be able to join or openly support a US military operation for political reasons.
But President Trump’s job approval ratings are slipping and he needs to take some action to turn the tide. According to the Quinnipiac University Poll, just 33 percent of American voters said they approved of Trump’s job in office, while 61 percent said they disapproved. It’s down 7 percentage points from the 40 percent rating he received in a similar survey in late June. In June, 84 percent of Republicans polled said they approved of Trump’s job in office. However, according to the latest survey, support among the same group has dipped to 76 percent.
Other polls also show the job approval ratings are going down. Just one other newly-elected president has held an approval rating below 50% at this point in his presidency since modern polling began: Bill Clinton, whose approval rating stood at 44% at this point in 1993.
The US president is under assault on many fronts. Now and then, calls for impeachment are made public. Conservatives begin to whisper: President Pence.
Short and successful military interventions abroad are the way to improve the ratings. There was a rise in Trump’s popularity after the cruise missiles strike in Syria he ordered on April 7. The same thing happened when the Massive Ordnance Air Blast bomb, dubbed the «mother of all bombs», was used on April 13 against Islamic State militants in Afghanistan.
After the election President-elect Trump said he would avoid interventions in foreign conflicts. Instead of investing in wars, he would spend money to build up America’s aging infrastructure: roads, bridges and airports. But bombing one’s way to popularity is a temptation hard to resist. So, Venezuela joins the list of countries, such as North Korea and Iran, which could be attacked by the United States anytime. 

River to Sea Uprooted Palestinian   
The views expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of the Blog!

Promised Land - Shattered Lives (must watch and shared)

This is a powerful short  deconstruction of the Biblical ‘promised land’ myth By Dan McGowan.
More Americans believe than do not believe Israel was given to the Jewish people by God, according to a 2013 Pew Research poll: http://pewrsr.ch/1wB0M85 Daniella Weiss, a leader of Israel’s Jewish settler movement, clearly stands with the believers.

River to Sea Uprooted Palestinian   
The views expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of the Blog!

Being in Time - a Revolutionary Leftist review by Roy Ratcliffe

Introduction by GA: the following is an extended review of my latest book, Being in Time, by Roy Ratcliffe, one of the last free creative thinkers within the Left milieu.
Far from being surprising, Ratcliffe, a revolutionary Marxist, found a lot of truth in the book. The same can be said about conservative and Right Wing intellectuals who also praised the book. How is it possible that both Right and Left ideologists/intellectuals agree upon the validity of a critical text?  Being in Time offers an answer to the above question. In Being in Time, Traditional Left and Right thinking modes are complimentary substances. They are like day and night, the ‘dream’ and the ‘real,’ together they from a mirror image of the human psychic, that mental transition between the ‘ought to be’ and ‘Being.’
Being in Time – a post political manifesto is critical of all forms of Identity (ID) politics: Jewish, gender, White, Black etc. The book argues that the breaking of society into biologically oriented ID sectors has obliterated our ability to fight together as one people. It was set to serve the interests of big money: the Soroses, the JP Morgans, the Goldmans, the Sachses. Being in Time attempts to explain why the USA is being pushed into a civil war. It explains why Trump became the president. It predicts Corbyn’s growing popularity.  It seeks a to offer a new synthesis of our human faculties. Instead of looking into that which spreads us apart, time is ripe to look into that that which unites us all.  

River to Sea Uprooted Palestinian   
The views expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of the Blog!

Trump and the Christian Fascists


    Donald Trump with the Rev. Pat Robertson in 2016 at Virginia’s Regent University, founded by Robertson. This month Robertson was granted a White House interview with the president for the Christian Broadcasting Network, also founded by the televangelist. (Steve Helber / AP)
Donald Trump’s ideological vacuum, the more he is isolated and attacked, is being filled by the Christian right. This Christianized fascism, with its network of megachurches, schools, universities and law schools and its vast radio and television empire, is a potent ally for a beleaguered White House. The Christian right has been organizing and preparing to take power for decades. If the nation suffers another economic collapse, which is probably inevitable, another catastrophic domestic terrorist attack or a new war, President Trump’s ability to force the Christian right’s agenda on the public and shut down dissent will be dramatically enhanced. In the presidential election, Trump had 81 percent of white evangelicals behind him.
Trump’s moves to restrict abortion, defund Planned Parenthood, permit discrimination against LGBT people in the name of “religious liberty” and allow churches to become active in politics by gutting the Johnson Amendment, along with his nominations of judges championed by the Federalist Society and his call for a ban on Muslim immigrants, have endeared him to the Christian right. He has rolled back civil rights legislation and business and environmental regulations. He has elevated several stalwarts of the Christian right into power—Mike Pence to the vice presidency, Jeff Sessions to the Justice Department, Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court, Betsy DeVos to the Department of Education, Tom Price to Health and Human Services and Ben Carson to Housing and Urban Development. He embraces the white supremacy, bigotry, American chauvinism, greed, religious intolerance, anger and racism that define the Christian right.
Click here for a 2007 video of Chris Hedges speaking about his book “American Fascists: The Christian Right and the War on America.”
More important, Trump’s disdain for facts and his penchant for magical thinkingand conspiracy theories mesh well with the worldview of the Christian right, which sees itself as under attack by the satanic forces of secular humanismembodied in the media, academia, the liberal establishment, Hollywood and the Democratic Party. In this worldview, climate change is not real, Barack Obama is a Muslim and millions of people voted illegally in the 2016 election.
The followers of the Christian right, like Trump and his brain trust, including Stephen Bannon, are Manicheans. They see the world in black and white, good and evil, them and us. Trump’s call in his speech in Poland for a crusade against the godless hoards of Muslims fleeing from the wars and chaos we created replicates the view of the Christian right. Christian right leaders in a sign of support went to the White House on July 10 to pray over Trump. Two days later Pat Robertson showed up there to interview the president for his Christian Broadcasting Network.
If the alliance between these zealots and the government succeeds, it will snuff out the last vestiges of American democracy.
On the surface it appears to be incongruous that the Christian right would rally behind a slick New York real estate developer who is a very public serial philanderer and adulterer, has no regard for the truth, is consumed by greed, does not appear to read or know the Bible, routinely defrauds and cheats his investors and contractors, expresses a crude misogyny and an even cruder narcissism and appears to yearn for despotism. In fact, these are the very characteristics that define most of the leaders of the Christian right. Trump has preyed on desperate people through the thousands of slot machines in his casinos, his sham university and his real estate deals. Megachurch pastors prey on their followers by extracting “seed offerings,” “love gifts,” tithes and donations and by selling miracle healings along with “prayer clothes,” self-help books, audio and video recordings and even protein shakes. Pastors have established within their megachurches, as Trump did in his businesses, despotic fiefdoms. They cannot be challenged or questioned any more than an omnipotent Trump could be challenged on the reality television show “The Apprentice.” And they seek to replicate their little tyrannies on a national scale, with white men in charge.
The personal piety of most of the ministers who lead the Christian right is a facade. Their private lives are usually marked by hedonistic squalor that includes mansions, private jets, limousines, retinues of bodyguards, personal assistants and servants, shopping sprees, lavish vacations and sexual escapades that rival those carried out by Trump. And because they run “churches,” in many cases church funds pay for their tax-free empires, including their extravagant lifestyles. They also engage in the nepotism found in the Trump organization, elevating family members to prominent or highly paid positions and passing on the businesses to their children.
The Christian right’s scandals, which give a glimpse into the sordid lives of these multimillionaire pastors, are legion. Jim and Tammy Faye Bakker’s Praise the Lord Club, for example, raked in as much as $1 million a week before Jim Bakker went to prison for nearly five years. He was convicted of fraud and other charges in 1989 because of a $158 million scheme in which followers paid for vacations that never materialized. As the Bakker empire came apart, there also were accusations of drug use and rape. Tammy Faye died in 2007, and now Jim Bakker is back, peddling survival food for the end days and telling his significantly reduced television audience that anyone who opposes Trump is the Antichrist.Paul and Jan Crouch, who gave the Bakkers their start, founded Trinity Broadcasting, the world’s largest televangelist network, now run by their son Matt and his wife, Laurie. Viewers were encouraged to call prayer counselors at the toll-free number shown at the bottom of the TV screen. It was a short step from talking with a prayer counselor to making a “love gift” and becoming a “partner” in Trinity Broadcasting and then sending in more money during one of the frequent Praise-a-Thons.
The Crouches reveled in tasteless kitsch, as does Trump. They sat during their popular nightly program in front of stained glass windows that overlooked Louis XVI-inspired sets awash in gold rococo and red velvet, glittering chandeliers and a gold-painted piano. The network emblem, which Paul Crouch wore on the pocket of his blue double-breasted blazer, featured a crown, a lion, a horse, a white dove, a cross and Latin phrases among other elements. The Crouches would have been at home in Trump Tower, where the president has a faux “Trump crest”—allegedly plagiarized—and has decorated his penthouse as if it was part of Versailles.
The Crouches were masters of manipulation. They exhorted viewers to send in checks for $1,000, even if they could not afford it. Write the check anyway, Paul Crouch, who died in 2013, told them, as a “step of faith” and the Lord would repay them many times over. “Do you think God would have any trouble getting $1,000 extra to you somehow?” he asked during one Praise-a-Thon broadcast. Viewers, many of whom struggled with deep despair and believed that miracles and magic alone held them back from the abyss, often found it impossible to resist this emotional pressure.
Trinity Broadcasting Network (TBN) is home to many of the worst charlatans in the Christian right, including the popular healer Benny Hinn, who says that Adam was a superhero who could fly to the moon and claims that one day the dead will be raised by watching TBN from inside their coffins. Hinn claims his “anointings” have cured cancer, AIDS, deafness, blindness and numerous other ailments and physical injuries. Those who have not been cured, he says, did not send in enough money.
These religious hucksters are some of the most accomplished con artists in the country, a trait they share with the current occupant of the Oval Office.
I wrote a book on the Christian right in 2007 called “American Fascists: The Christian Right and the War on America.” I did not use the word “fascist” lightly. I spent several hours, at the end of two years of reporting, with two of the country’s foremost scholars on fascism—Fritz Stern and Robert O. Paxton. Did this ideology fit the parameters of classical fascism? Was it virulent enough and organized enough to seize power? Would it go to the ruthless extremes of previous fascist movements to persecute and silence dissent? Has our deindustrialized society replicated the crippling despair, alienation and rage that always feed fascist movements?
The evangelicalism promoted by the Christian right is very different from the evangelicalism and fundamentalism of a century ago. The emphasis on personal piety that defined the old movement, the call to avoid the contamination of politics, has been replaced by Christian Reconstructionism, called Dominionism by some. This new ideology is about taking control of all institutions, including the government, to build a “Christian” nation. Rousas John Rushdoony in his 1973 book, “The Institutes of Biblical Law,” first articulated it. Rushdoony argued that God gives the elect, just as he gave Adam and Noah, dominion over the earth to build a Christian society. Their state will come about with the physical eradication of the forces of Satan. It is the duty of the church and the elect to “rescue” the world so Christ can return.
This is an ideology of death. It promises that the secular, humanist society will be physically destroyed. The Ten Commandments will form the basis of our legal system. Creationism or “Intelligent Design” will be taught in public schools. People who are considered social deviants, including homosexuals, immigrants, secular humanists, feminists, Jews, Muslims, criminals and those dismissed as “nominal Christians”—meaning Christians who do not embrace the Christian right’s perverted and heretical interpretation of the Bible—will be silenced, imprisoned or killed. The role of the federal government will be reduced to protecting property rights, “homeland” security and waging war. Church organizations will be funded and empowered by the government to run social-welfare agencies. The poor, condemned for sloth, indolence and sinfulness, will be denied government assistance. The death penalty will be expanded to include “moral crimes,” including apostasy, blasphemy, sodomy and witchcraft, as well as abortion, which will be treated as murder. Women will be subordinate to men. Those who practice other faiths will become, at best, second-class citizens and eventually outcasts. The wars in the Middle East will be defined as religious crusades against Muslims. There will be no separation of church and state. The only legitimate voices will be “Christian.” America will become an agent of God. Those who defy the “Christian” authorities will be branded as agents of Satan.
Tens of millions of Americans are already hermetically sealed within this bizarre worldview. They are given a steady diet of conspiracy theories and lies on the internet, in their churches, in Christian schools and colleges and on Christian television and radio. Elizabeth Dilling, who wrote “The Red Network” and was a Nazi sympathizer, is required reading. Thomas Jefferson, who favored separation of church and state, is ignored. This Christian propaganda hails the “significant contributions” of the Confederacy. Sen. Joseph McCarthy, who led the anti-communist witch hunts in the 1950s, is rehabilitated as an American hero. The Israeli-Palestinian conflict, along with the wars in Iraq, Afghanistan, Yemen, Somalia and Libya, is defined as part of the worldwide battle against satanic Islamic terror. Presently, nearly 40 percent of the U.S. public believes in Creationism or “Intelligent Design.” And nearly a third of the population, 94 million people, consider themselves evangelical.Those who remain in a reality-based universe often dismiss these malcontents as buffoons. They do not take seriously the huge segment of the public, mostly white and working class, who because of economic distress have primal yearnings for vengeance, new glory and moral renewal and are easily seduced by magical thinking. These are the yearnings and emotions Trump has exploited politically.
Those who embrace this movement need to feel, even if they are not, that they are victims surrounded by dark and sinister groups bent on their destruction. They need to elevate themselves to the role of holy warriors, infused with a noble calling and purpose. They need to sanctify the rage and hypermasculinity that are the core of fascism. The rigidity and simplicity of their belief, which includes being anointed for a special purpose in life by God, are potent weapons in the fight against their own demons and desire for meaning.
“Evil when we are in its power is not felt as evil but as a necessity, or even a duty,” Simone Weil wrote.
These believers, like all fascists, detest the reality-based world. They condemn it as contaminated, decayed and immoral. This world took their jobs. It destroyed their future. It ruined their communities. It doomed their children. It flooded their lives with alcohol, opioids, pornography, sexual abuse, jail sentences, domestic violence, deprivation and despair. And then, from the depths of suicidal despair, they suddenly discovered that God has a plan for them. God will save them. God will intervene in their lives to promote and protect them. God has called them to carry out his holy mission in the world and to be rich, powerful and happy.
The rational, secular forces, those that speak in the language of fact and evidence, are hated and feared, for they seek to pull believers back into “the culture of death” that nearly destroyed them. The magical belief system, as it was for impoverished German workers who flocked to the Nazi Party, is an emotional life raft. It is all that supports them. The only way to blunt this movement is to reintegrate these people into the economy, to give them economic stability through good wages and benefits, to restore their self-esteem. They need to live in a society that is not predatory but instead provides well-funded public schools, free university education and universal health care, a society in which they and their families can prosper.
Let us not stand at the open gates of the city waiting passively for the barbarians. They are coming. They are slouching towards Bethlehem. Let us shake off our complacency and cynicism. Let us openly defy the liberal establishment, which will not save us, to demand and fight for economic reparations for the poor and the working class. Let us give all Americans a reality-based hope for the future. Time is running out. If we do not act, American fascists, clutching Christian crosses, waving American flags and orchestrating mass recitations of the pledge of allegiance, united behind the ludicrous figure of Donald Trump, will ride this rage to power.

River to Sea Uprooted Palestinian   
The views expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of the Blog!

Saudi Crown Prince Wants to End Yemen War: Leaks

Newly-leaked emails written by two former top US officials show that Saudi crown prince and defense minister Mohammed bin Salman “wants out” of the war he started in Yemen.

Mohammed bin Salman

Email correspondence from April of this year between Martin Indyk, the former US ambassador to the Zionist entity and Yousef Otaiba, the UAE’s ambassador to the US, was obtained by Middle East Eye, in which the two discussed their dealings with Prince bin Salman.
Indyk said bin Salman had been “clear” in meetings with himself and former national security advisor Stephen Hadley that he “wants out of Yemen” and is “OK with the US engaging with Iran,” despite his publicly aggressive stance on both the Yemeni crisis and Tehran.
Otaiba, however, did not reply to requests for comment, while Hadley told MEE: “I cannot comment on what was a private conversation.”
The then 29-year-old Mohammed bin Salman attracted criticism internationally for plunging Saudi Arabia into a bloody intervention in Yemen in March 2015.
The Saudi-led bombing campaign and air and sea blockade has left 70 per cent of Yemen’s 27-million strong population reliant on some form of humanitarian aid, 7.3 million on the brink of famine and caused the worst cholera outbreak in modern history.
The idea that Saudi Arabia is trying to exit its expensive war next door is not a new one, however, co-founder of the Sanaa Centre and non-resident fellow at the Middle East Institute in Washington DC told The Independent.
The UN estimates $2.1bn is needed to stop Yemen turning into a completely failed state, but donor governments only pledged half that amount at an aid conference in Geneva in April.
Western governments have also faced criticism for their role in the conflict: arms sold to Saudi Arabia are destined for use in the Yemeni war, rights groups indicate.

Source: The Independent, Edited by website team
15-08-2017 | 09:59
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River to Sea Uprooted Palestinian   
The views expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of the Blog!

Putin Slams Europe for Upholding Child Rape By a Migrant

The case Putin is referring to is reported on here. You have to hand it to the Russian leader. He never seems to tire of supplying us with ample evidence of what a huge difference sane, rational leadership can make in the life of a country. There is no immigrant crisis in Russia.

River to Sea Uprooted Palestinian   
The views expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of the Blog!

It’s Time to Stop “Supporting Our Troops”: Thirty Million People Killed by U.S. Since the End of World War II


First published in December 2015
With the 115 year old tradition of the annual Army-Navy football classic on Saturday [December 2015], the so called “America’s game” and “rivalry for the ages” is now once again upon us. This occasion never fails to pay reverent homage to America’s so called “cream of the crop” elitist military academies and always from the president to celebrities Americans give tribute to our armed forces. At this time we hear that familiar patriotic mantra “support our troops” mindlessly repeated. So it seems appropriate now to take a cold hard look to examine what it actually means to “support our troops.”
As both a West Point graduate and critic of the American Empire, to me the “support our troops” sentiment has long outworn its propagandized welcome. US Empire has been using that contrite expression to brainwash Americans and justify its wars and violence for far too long. It sprang up during this last decade’s protracted war losses in Iraq and Afghanistan. Never was it ever heard during the Vietnam War when our combat veterans returned home feeling defeated and suffering from untreated PTSD symptoms, shunned by a nation that had bitterly turned against them and their war, particularly by their own peer group. Fast forward to four decades and three war defeats later, and our government is still sending Americans off to fight and die inAfghanistan (9800 currently) and Iraq (3500 with another 100 on the way), and now inSyria (50 just proposed with more on the way while war-hawk Bobbsy twins McCain and Graham are calling for 20,000 more troops in Syria). But this century’s wars we keep hearing red, white and blue, flag waving Americans urging us to “support our troops.”
Over the long haul, supporting our troops has resulted in the United States being the most warring, aggressive nation on earth, bar none. As we’re about to enter 2016, our ultraviolent country will be killing other human beings somewhere on this planet for 223 out of the last 240 total years the US has been in existence. That’s 93% of our time as a nation-turned-Empire we’ve been destroying human life. That’s certainly nothing to be proud of. Yet it’s “our troops” who’ve been the murdering culprit. No compassionate, rational person could possibly place blindly obedient support behind such rampantly wanton disregard and contempt for fellow human life.
Another fact that Americans can’t be proud of is knowing that the most warring nation on earth just since World War II alone has murdered up to 30 million people around the globe with an estimated 90% of them being civilians. Having initiated 201 out of the total of 240 armed conflicts from the end of WWII to 2001, it then follows that between those years the US Empire of Chaos and Destruction has murdered 27 million innocent people whose lives have tragically been cut short through no fault of their own for simply living in the wrong place at the wrong time belonging to the wrong ethnic nationality targeted by America’s full spectrum dominance and global superpower hegemony. And that was before the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq.
And what does it take to be targeted as a US foreign enemy? Any country whose leaders choose to support their own citizens’ well-being, independence and quality of life over US Empire’s fascist transnational corporate interests is attacked economically through sanctions and embargos, politically through propaganda lies and threats, or militarily though unnatural disasters/weather warfare, occupied invasions involving long term bloody conflict or acts of terrorism, coups and assassinations. Just ask Cuba, Venezuela, Haiti, Panama, Iran, Syria, Iraq, Libya, Pakistan, Yemen, Somalia, Sudan, Congo North Korea, Donbas, Palestine or Russia just to name more than a dozen.
People around the world have been victimized for well over a century by American Empire’s willful rape and pillage of their lands in the name of stolen natural resources and inhumane forced slave labor, and those are the nations whose puppet dictators willingly succumbed and acquiesced to US demands and pressures. In fact in the tradition of the British Empire, North America’s entire domestic and foreign history has been made of genocidal killing, enslaving, stealing and subjugating other darker-skinned races into death and submission. Given this context with the bigger picture perspective, “supporting our troops” is really supporting mass murder around the world. So bearing that sobering, grim reality in mind, it’s time for Americans to cease and desist with their jingoistic rah-rah that only adds insult to injury to the rest of the victimized world.
In 2008 the US spent more money every 5 seconds to wage an immoral, unlawful war in Iraq than the average working American earned all year long. 80% of America’s taxes are earmarked towards funding the annual Pentagon budget to wage war around the world. When that kind of war investment misappropriating US citizenry’s hard-earned tax dollars places such lopsided priority over the well-being of its own people, with over a decade of wearing down an overextended military forced into fighting three, four and even five consecutive combat tours on two simultaneous warfronts, it also overburdened and decimated America’s middle class. And now for the first time in nearly a half century, the US middle class is no longer a majority in the United States. A large chunk of it died when sinking into an expanding lower class of impoverished, poverty-stricken Americans barely making ends meet.
But considering the costs of war to victim nations where since 2003 the US has killed over a million people in Iraq alone, this figure released from a study earlier this year is admittedly a conservative estimate. The study concludes that up to two million in Iraq, Afghanistan and Pakistan have been killed by America’s wars. These colossal crimes against humanity constitute supporting the US federal government as well as its military troops a moral crime. America’s complete and utter destruction of the world’s second and third largest oil producers in Iraq and Libya, turning them into failed states because their one time US allied leaders moved away from the US petrodollaris unconscionable, yet that’s the tragic outcome of blindly supporting our troops. More than any other single country, the US today is responsible for allowing ISIS to make billions in profit from stolen oil from Iraq and Syria financing the biggest terrorist group on the planet. And US partners-in-crime Turkey and Israel are the two biggest buyers of terrorist oil. So in effect supporting our troops is also supporting both crimes against humanity as well as worldwide terrorism.
Supporting our troops has contributed to the world becoming far more armed and dangerous today than at any prior time in our recorded human history. Our nation is also responsible for spearheading the biggest arms race in history where it’s not just the US Empire spending so many billions on weapons of mass destruction but due to Empire aggression it has forced Russia and China to answer by also significantly increasing their military spending. A dozen years ago the US defense budget nearly equaled the rest of the world combined. But during this century’s two protracted US wars plus smaller secret ones around the world, America’s military expenditures have soared to $682 billion in 2012 from $417.4 in 2003.
he exponential rise of American aggression likewise has pressured the unilaterally declared US enemies Russia and China to significantly increase their military spending as well. The US has gone from spending near half (46%) of the world’s military amount in 2003 to just 35% in 2014due to Russia and China dramatically expanding their military budgets. In fact following America’s lead, both the world’s annual arms sales as well as its military budgets have exponentially skyrocketed amongst dozens of countries all seemingly gearing up for “the big one.” Not surprisingly, at 31% the US is also the biggest arms dealer on the planet followed by Russia’s 27% with China accounting for 5% during the period from 2010-2014 that totaled a 16% increase from arms sold from 2005-2009.
Events and developments have escalated tensions and confrontations between the US and Russia and China in recent weeks. With the US backing NATO memberTurkey recklessly shooting down a Russian fighter jet resulting in a Russian rescue helicopter also brought down last month, in addition to the probable ISIS bomb taking down the Russian airliner killing all 224 onboard a month and a half ago, the US Navy destroyerskirting inside the twelve nautical mile range of built up Chinese islands in the South China Sea, the United States and the West appear to be baiting Putin and the East into World War III. And with nuclear powers going directly head-to-head in Syria, Ukraine and Asia, self-annihilation of the human race becomes a very real and grave risk culminating after a quarter century of US Empire belligerently operating as the sole global superpower and “global village” bully.
Out of nearly 200 countries no other nation on earth has more than a few military bases outside its own country except the United States. In contrast to the rest of the world, the US sends 1.5 million military occupiers on active duty to over a thousand military installations on every continent throughout the globe. Just this week the Pentagon announced a worldwide expansion of military bases without specifying a total number under the auspices of secrecy. West Africa, East Africa and Afghanistan are slotted for full scale bases. Meanwhile US Special Forces that covertly operate by stealth surprise often at night in guerilla-type, fast strike operations are busily secretly committing acts of terror in over 135 nationsglobally, that’s about 75% of the all world’s nations.
Let’s look at the way our federal government supports our troops. After sending over6800 US soldiers (along with 7000 civilian contractors) to their early graves fighting in America’s two longest running wars in the nation’s history, leaving one million wounded personnel filing VA claims ranging from life threatening physical injuries to emotionally crippling PTSD traumas and scars, the feds have betrayed our patriots serving our country by treasonously targeting all returning combat veterans as thebiggest enemy threat on American soil. Indeed veterans, gun owners and dissidents are deemed to pose a greater danger than even the feds’ own created terrorist monster ISIS that Obama’s open border policy facilitates easy access to establishing terrorist cells inside America.
Those veterans seeking help are customarily snowed under by lethal Big Pharma poison, fast becoming addicted and even more unstable. Many are haplessly waiting and dying on lists for medical services that often don’t come soon enough. Exposing forty veterans who died awaiting services on invisible lists at the Phoenix VA hospital alone triggered a major scandal last year. For several years running on averagetwenty-two veterans have been killing themselves each and every day in the United States. The overloaded Veterans Administration has been caught grossly ill-prepared to adequately deal with the sheer enormity of the problem with so many severely damaged ex-soldiers in dire need of long term assistance and care. One study predicts that up to nearly a half million veterans will end up with criminal cases in the court system.
With nearly half (44%) of Congress millionaires and so few (19%) ever serving in uniform now, the DC warmongers are ever-at-the-ready to send young men and women from America’s lower class into harm’s way fighting Obama’s dirty little secret wars in multiple combat zones around the world that the public never even hears about. Yet you’ll see next to none of their own sons or daughters fighting in some far off war. The way our own government has used, abused and not supported our troops is despicable.
And then a sizeable percentage of those Americans who are so vocal in their claims of “supporting our troops,” are too frequently disingenuous. Often hypocrites merely mouth the same banal platitudes year after year from their ivory-towered, pretend world, living so far removed and disaffected from actual war conditions or even knowing anyone who wears a military uniform. Never fathoming the tragic insanity or bloody lifelong consequences that US wars ravage on millions worldwide, permanently damaging all involved, Americans who haven’t a clue will glibly pay lip service, “We owe so much to our soldiers who fight to keep us safe and free.” What bubble, planet or century are they living on or in?
Since the inside coup of 9/11 was perpetrated, US citizens have become the murderous neocons’ war on terror victims as well, terrorized by their own international crime cabal government and militarized police state that’s effectively stolen their freedom and civil liberties while the guilty treasonously continue violating sworn oaths to uphold and protect both the Constitution and American people. Yet too many brainwashed, dumbed down and clueless in America don’t seem to get it. Maybe it’s because they’re bombarded 24/7 by MSM lies and disinformationthat never expose the ugliness of war as it really is. The ruling elite controls all aspects of mass media, engaging in widespread censorship of films, television and video games whereviolence and war are only glorified. Military, CIA and FBI liaisons control every aspect of what comes out of Hollywood these days.
But over four decades of a volunteer army comprised of less than half of one percent of the total US population also contributes greatly to the widening disconnect between the 99+% civilian population and the less than 1% Americans in uniform. The atrocities and horror that the imperialistic Empire’s killing machine has inflicted on Third World nations half a world away may as well be billions of miles away on another planet or galaxy. Out of sight, out of mind goes many civilians’ insulated, tunnel version reality.
Those currently in uniform need to be reminded that they have a sworn duty to protect America from domestic and foreign enemies. As citizens who no longer live in a democratic republic but now a totalitarian police state, they need to recognize that their federal government has a diabolical agenda to enslave and eliminate fellow Americans. Instead of criminalizing dissent, the real domestic enemy has become the federal government and all Americans need to accept this tragic development. Therefore, both those already in uniform as well as those ready to sign up and allow themselves to become their crime cabal’s latest cannon fodder in the elite’s wars need to stand up and be counted as patriots loyal to their nation and fellow citizens rather than adhere to blind obedience to their psychopathic masters. It’s no longer okay to support the troops when they’re misdirected into committing treason against their own citizenry. Military personnel need to take responsibility for their actions and do what’s right by both their Constitution as well as humanity.
2015 has been a tumultuous year when by globalist design terrorism has expanded to all corners of the earth, spreading death, war and destruction in its wake. Meanwhile, feeling its economic prowess slipping away in the face of the emerging power of Eastern rivals China and Russia, the United States government has already conceded losing its war to retain the US dollar as the world’s reserve currency.
So this late in the power elite’s endgame when we’re still hearing “support the troops,” in actuality it’s time to fight for our lives in support of humanity’s struggle for survival and good ultimately triumphing over evil.
Joachim Hagopian is a West Point graduate and former US Army officer. He has written a manuscript based on his unique military experience entitled “Don’t Let The Bastards Getcha Down.” It examines and focuses on US international relations, leadership and national security issues. After the military, Joachim earned a master’s degree in Clinical Psychology and worked as a licensed therapist in the mental health field for more than a quarter century. He now concentrates on his writing and has a blog site at http://empireexposed.blogspot.co.id/.


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