Do any of the elected officials in the US, from the president on down, have any significant control over what the government does? From Cynthia Chung at strategic-culture.org:
“There is a kind of character in thy life, That to the observer doth thy history, fully unfold.”
– William Shakespeare
Once again we find ourselves in a situation of crisis, where the entire world holds its breath all at once and can only wait to see whether this volatile black cloud floating amongst us will breakout into a thunderstorm of nuclear war or harmlessly pass us by. The majority in the world seem to have the impression that this destructive fate totters back and forth at the whim of one man. It is only normal then, that during such times of crisis, we find ourselves trying to analyze and predict the thoughts and motives of just this one person. The assassination of Maj. Gen. Qasem Soleimani, a true hero for his fellow countrymen and undeniably an essential key figure in combating terrorism in Southwest Asia, was a terrible crime, an abhorrently repugnant provocation. It was meant to cause an apoplectic fervour, it was meant to make us who desire peace, lose our minds in indignation. And therefore, that is exactly what we should not do.
In order to assess such situations, we cannot lose sight of the whole picture, and righteous indignation unfortunately causes the opposite to occur. Our focus becomes narrower and narrower to the point where we can only see or react moment to moment with what is right in front of our face. We are reduced to an obsession of twitter feeds, news blips and the doublespeak of ‘official government statements’.
The Iranian government lied about shooting down PS-752 and the admitted it had shot the plane down, ergo, there are no holes in the official story about MH-17, the plane that was shot down over Ukraine in 2014. It makes perfect sense. From Max Parry at off-guardian.org:
When the Pentagon confirmed the assassination of Iranian Major General Qasem Soleimani, U.S. President Donald Trump took to social media to post a single image of the American flag to the adulation of his followers.
Unfortunately, most Americans are ignorant of the other flag synonymous with U.S. foreign policy, that of the ‘false flag’ utilized to deceive the public and stir up support for endless war abroad.
While the chicken hawk defenders of Trump’s reckless decision to murder one of the biggest contributors in the defeat of ISIS salivated over possible war with Iran, their appetite was spoiled by Tehran’s retaliatory precision strikes of two U.S. bases in Iraq that deliberately avoided casualties while in accordance with the Islamic Republic’s right to self-defense under Article 51 of the United Nations charter.
The trigger for his decision was management suppressing his story on the bombshell news that the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) hid a mountain of evidence suggesting the 2018 Douma Attack was staged, thus paving the way for more military intervention in Syria. But below the surface, it was about far more than that; Haddad’s essay described how journalists are worked to the bone and how media drives the public towards war, coordinating smears against politicians who stand against it. But most spectacularly of all, he alleges that there is a network of hundreds of government assets working as high-level editors in newsrooms across America, even naming the one at Newsweek.
Haddad knew the consequences of speaking out:
In the end, that decision was rather simple, all be it I understand the cost to me will be undesirable. I will be unemployed, struggle to finance myself and will likely not find another position in the industry I care about so passionately. If I am a little lucky, I will be smeared as a conspiracy theorist, maybe an Assad apologist or even a Russian asset—the latest farcical slur of the day,” he wrote.
Although he has plenty of competition, Brennan may have been the scuzziest intelligence operative of them all. From Tyler Durden at zerohedge.com:
Attorney General William Barr told “The Story with Martha MacCallum” that by the time Trump was inaugurated in January 2017, it had become clear that allegations raised by the FBI against a former Trump campaign aide George Papadopoulos were largely baseless, and that pursuing George Papadopoulos’ “had very little probative value.”
John Durham isn’t just looking at the FBI. He’s looking at other agencies, departments, and private actors. The other agents is cooperating very well. pic.twitter.com/VyM5Wp7VqI
Additionally, Barr admitted, in a very candid (for him) moment, that federal prosecutor John Durham (who is scrutinizing the Russia investigation) “isn’t just looking at the FBI, he’s looking at other agencies, departments, and private actors,” but that “the other agencies are cooperating very well.”
Which is all the more intriguing as, at the same time as his interview aired, The New York Times dropped a bombshell, reporting that, according to three people briefed on the inquiry, Durham’s investigation has begun examining the role of the former C.I.A. director John O. Brennan in how the intelligence community assessed Russia’s 2016 election interference.
BILL BINNEY: I basically have always been saying that all of this Russian hack never happened, but we have some more evidence coming out recently. We haven’t published it yet, but what we have seen is that there are at least five items that we’ve found that were produced by Guccifer 2.0 back on June 15th, where they had the Russian fingerprints in them, suggesting the Russians made the hack. Well, we found the same five items published by Wikileaks in the Podesta emails. Those items do not have the Russian fingerprints, which directly implies that Guccifer 2.0 was inserting these into the files to make it look like the Russians did this hack. Taking that into account with all the other evidence we have; like the download speeds from Guccifer 2.0 were too fast, and they couldn’t be managed by the web. And that the files he was putting together and saying that he actually hacked, the two files he said he had were really one file, and he was playing with the data; moving it to two different files to claim two hacks. Taking that into account with the fabrication of the Russian fingerprints, it leads us back to inferring that in fact the marble framework out of the Vault 7 compromise of CIA hacking routines was a possible user in this case. In other words, it looked like the CIA did this, and that it was a matter of the CIA making it look like the Russians were doing the hack. So, when you look at that and also look at the DNC emails that were published by Wikileaks that have this phat file format in them, all 35,813 of these emails have rounded off times to the nearest even second. That’s a phat file format property; that argues that those files were, in fact, downloaded to a thumb drive or CD-rom and physically transported before Wikileaks posted them. Which again argues that it wasn’t a hack. So, all of the evidence we’re finding is clearly evidence that the Russians were not in fact hacking; it was probably our own people. It’s very hard for us to get this kind of information out. The mainstream media won’t cover it; none of them will. It’s very hard. We get some bloggers to do that and some radio shows.
How would Julian Assange get a fair trial if the CIA’s been spying on him and his lawyers? From Ben Doherty and Amy Remelkis at theguardian.org:
Allegations a security firm at Ecuadorian embassy gave footage to CIA come as 100 doctors urge Australia to protect him
Julian Assange’s fight against extradition to the US could last years, and his argument could hinge on reports he has been illegally spied upon and his sensitive information given to the CIA.
Meanwhile, more than 100 doctors from across the world have written to the Australian government, urging it to act and “protect the life of its citizen”, in a letter to be delivered to the foreign affairs minister on Tuesday, amid warnings Assange’s health continues to deteriorate.
A judicial investigation by the Audiencia Nacional in Spain, the country’s national court, is acting on allegations that while Assange held asylum inside the Ecuadorian embassy in London, the Wikileaks founder was spied on, listened to and had his computer data scraped and that this information was sold to US intelligence agencies.
The important question in the Russiagate and Ukrainegate scandals is who’s pulling the strings. From Charles “Sam” Faddis at andmagazine.com:
The essence of a coup, which some might refer to as covert action, is the hidden hand. One does not announce that a foreign power is overthrowing the government and installing a new government. One pulls strings as if from behind a curtain, making events that are all part of a carefully orchestrated plan appear disconnected, spontaneous and serendipitous.
As I read through the recently released IG report for the second time, as someone with a great deal of experience in military and intelligence matters, I see that hand everywhere.
Per the IG report, a single report is delivered to the FBI in the summer of 2016. It concerns a meeting between a cooperative contact of a foreign intelligence service and a junior level employee of the Trump campaign, George Papadopoulos. The report relates what are frankly very amorphous comments by Papadopoulos concerning the Russian government and its alleged possession of information on Hillary Clinton.
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