Tag Archives: Repression

They Are Rolling Out The Architecture Of Oppression Now Because They Fear The People, by Caitlin Johnstone

There’s strength—and rage—in numbers, and our rulers know it. From Caitlin Johnstone at caitlinjohnstone.com:

“As authoritarianism spreads, as emergency laws proliferate, as we sacrifice our rights, we also sacrifice our capability to arrest the slide into a less liberal and less free world,” NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden said in a recent interview. “Do you truly believe that when the first wave, this second wave, the 16th wave of the coronavirus is a long-forgotten memory, that these capabilities will not be kept? That these datasets will not be kept? No matter how it is being used, what is being built is the architecture of oppression.”

“Apple Inc. and Google unveiled a rare partnership to add technology to their smartphone platforms that will alert users if they have come into contact with a person with Covid-19,” reads a new report from Bloomberg. “People must opt in to the system, but it has the potential to monitor about a third of the world’s population.”

“World Health Organization executive director Dr. Michael Ryan said surveillance is part of what’s required for life to return to normal in a world without a vaccine. However, civil liberties experts warn that the public has little recourse to challenge these digital exercises of power once the immediate threat has passed,” reads a recent VentureBeat article titled “After coronavirus, AI could be central to our new normal“.

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As Media Amplifies Unrest in Venezuela and Beyond, Millions Are Quietly Revolting in Colombia, by Alan Macleod and Whitney Webb

Any two-bit demonstration agains the government in a leftist Latin America will probably get picked up by the US mainstream media, but it ignores substantial and long-running protests against governments that are friends of the US government. From Alan Macleod and Whitney Webb at mintpressnews.com:

Despite protests of historic proportions fueled by anger over corruption and a brutal right-wing crackdown, the unrest in Colombia has garnered remarkably little international media attention compared to Venezuela.

Many of the massive anti-neoliberal protest movements that exploded across the globe last year have pressed on into 2020, especially those that rose up throughout Latin America. Many of those demonstrations — clearly newsworthy due to their enormous size, composition, and motives — were and continue to be ignored by prominent English language news outlets, essentially creating a media blackout of these movements.

This trend has been particularly magnified in Latin American countries whose current governments are closely allied with the United States, with Colombia, in particular, standing out. Despite being faced with protests from hundreds of thousands of people fueled by anger over state corruption, proposed neoliberal reforms and a spike in murders of social leaders, the unrest in Colombia has garnered remarkably little international media attention.

In contrast, U.S.-supported right-wing movements attempting to topple socialist governments like those in Venezuela and Bolivia have received a great deal of coverage and open support from both the media and the political class.

It is certainly telling that international media outlets largely ignored the protests of Colombia’s teachers, who were motivated to act largely due to a dangerous wave of violence targeting them incited by the government itself, leading to several murders and hundreds of death threats in the span of just a few months. Colombia’s President Iván Duque’s political mentor Álvaro Uribe, himself president between 2002 and 2010, accused the country’s teachers of brainwashing the youth: “Teachers only teach them to yell and to insult, not how to debate, warping their minds,” he said.

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The Illusion of Control, Part Two, by Robert Gore

The coming chaos

Part One

The US government has gone all in on taxation, redistribution, spending, expansion of its power, ever more intrusive laws and regulations, the increasing curtailment of liberty, debt funding, and debt-based “money” it and the Federal Reserve produce at will. The coercion and fraud implicit in these measures have been poisons on American political culture and are destroying the US economy and way of life.

Control, illusory or otherwise, requires resources. Government produces nothing, so the resources must be taken or borrowed. The economic grave it’s digging for itself is the greatest threat to the US government’s control. Taxation discourages production. Regulation throws sand in the economy’s gears and can stop it entirely. Steadily mounting debt and its consequent debt service exact an increasing toll. Most US debt funds consumption, which generates no offsetting return, not production, which potentially does.

Monetary flim-flam—the central bank using its created-at-will debt to buy the government’s created-at-will debt—is embraced in some particularly deluded quarters as a panacea, but it’s really a perpetual motion snare. Nothing is created or produced, so it’s tempting to say the central bank-government fiat debt exchanges have the same economic effect as two people exchanging twenty-dollar bills.

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Let’s Talk About Saudi Arabia, by Michael Krieger

Any close examination of Saudi Arabia and its government yields the question: why would the US ever want to crawl into bed with these corrupt, ruthless, double-dealing kleptocrats? From Michael Krieger at libertyblitzkrieg.com:

All wars require casus belli, ostensible justifications. After all, despite humanity’s long history of vicious warfare, interstate combat often requires a government distant from its working class to motivate its people to kill and die for distant institutions and esoteric ideologies. That said, Washington doesn’t exactly have a strong track record of honesty regarding its rationales for war. Few Americans know or care much for their own history…

Maj. Danny Sjursen, USA (ret.)

One of the most horrible features of war is that all the war-propaganda, all the screaming and lies and hatred, comes invariably from people who are not fighting…It is the same in all wars; the soldiers do the fighting, the journalists do the shouting.

– George Orwell, Homage to Catalonia

It’s fall 2019, and nearly twenty years into a series of disastrous and murderous forever wars sold to the public as a necessary response to 9/11, we’re being instructed to prepare for another one. Replace the Q with an N at the end of IRA and you know what I’m talking about. Of course, this shouldn’t surprise anyone considering much of the U.S. foreign policy establishment has been actively scheming for some invented justification to take out Iran (and many others) for decades.

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Hurricane Barry Proves Terrorist Threat Is A Hoax, by Paul Craig Roberts

It’s been almost eighteen years since 9/11, and terrorists have had innumerable opportunities to inflict huge damage on American infrastructure and murder thousands, hundred thousands, or millions of people. Yet it hasn’t happened. From Paul Craig Roberts at paulcraigroberts.org:

What Hurricane Barry tells us as it floods an already flooded New Orleans is that the “terrorist threat” that the US allegedly faces is a hoax.

What do I mean?  Think about it this way.  Terrorists, if such exist, have had ample warning about New Orleans’ precarious position with the swollen Mississipi river in flood stage for the longest period in recorded history.  What would terrorists be doing as I write?  They woud be setting off explosives to breach one of the levees and watch the Mississippi river wash New Orleans away.  

This is simple child’s play for terrorists who, if you believe the US government, are so clever that they outwitted airport security four times in one hour on the same morning, hijacked 4 airliners, and brought down three World Trade Center skyscrapers and part of the Pentagon.  

Indeed, there are any number of dams and levees that could easily be breached with chaotic results.  The same for power sub-stations and cell phone towers.  “Airport security” is a pointless exercise as terrorists can kill far more people by exploding their bombs in the crowds waiting to clear TSA than they can by blowing up an airliner.  The easiest way for terrorists to cause mayhem is to empty boxes of roofing nails during rush hour on all major arteries in all major American cities.  It would take weeks to clear the roads of the hundreds of thousands of cars. Life in the major cities would come to a standstill.  People couldn’t get to work, school, or hospital. Food deliveries could not be made.  Those without provisions would lose a lot of weight and some would starve to death.  

All of these acts are far easier and far less complicated to arrange than the 9/11 attack.  Yet not a single one of them has occurred.  Other than TSA terrorizing US citizens, what terrorist acts have we experienced?  School shootings, assuming they are real and not stage productions, are not done by Muslim terrorists.

The absence of Muslim terrorist attacks in America is puzzling in view of the mass slaughter, maiming, orphaning, and dislocation of millions of Muslims by the US government for almost two decades.  This absence of retribution must seem strange to Americans who are accustomed to extreme demonization of Muslims.

The war on terror is a hoax used (1) to justify Washington’s destruction of 7 countries in whole or part during the first two decades of the 21st century, (2) to create a domestic police state and achieve the acquiescence by US citizens in the loss of their Constitutional protections, and (3) to create fortunes for favored operatives of the police state, such as Michael Chertoff (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Michael_Chertoff ), the director of Homeland Security who became rich selling scanning machines to TSA.

 

The Prosecution Of Julian Assange Is Infinitely Bigger Than Assange, by Caitlin Johnstone

Julian Assange is being persecuted now to quell any and all future efforts to expose governments’ many wrongdoings. From Caitlin Johnstone at caitlinjohnstone.com:

Julian Assange’s mother reported yesterday that the WikiLeaks founder has not been permitted any visitors during his detention in Belmarsh Prison, including from doctors and his lawyers. Doctors who visited Assange in the Ecuadorian Embassy have attested that he urgently needs medical care. Belmarsh is a maximum security prison sometimes referred to as “the UK’s Guantanamo Bay“.

And yet we’re asked to believe that this has something to do with an alleged bail violation and a US extradition request for alleged computer crimes carrying a maximum sentence of five years. If you zoom out and listen to the less-informed chatter of the overt propagandists and the brainwashed rank-and-file western mass media consumers, you will also see that people believe this has something to do with Russia and rape allegations as well.

Actually, none of these things are true. Assange is being imprisoned under draconian conditions for journalism, and for journalism only. The Obama administration declined to prosecute him after WikiLeaks’ publication of the Manning leaks out of concern that doing so would endanger press freedoms, and the Obama administration didn’t have any more evidence at its disposal than the Trump administration has now. The “crime” Assange is accused of consists of nothing other than standard journalistic practices that investigative journalists engage in all the time, including source protection and encouraging the source to obtain more material. The only thing that has changed is an increased willingness in the White House to prosecute journalists for practicing journalism, and there are an abundance of reasons to believe that he will be hit with far more serious charges once extradited to US soil. They’re not going to all this trouble for a bail violation and a five-year maximum sentence.

But if you zoom out even further, in the grand scheme of things this barely even has anything to do with Assange. Sure, he has of course been a thorn in the side of those who operate the transnational western power alliance, and given the choice they would of course prefer him to be locked up or dead than free and alive. But that’s not what the corrupt influencers who are strangling our world are shooting for here. They are making a grab for something much, much bigger. Assange just happens to be a stepping stone along the way.

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State Secrets and the National-Security State, by Jacob G. Hornberger

National-security states, also called authoritarian or, if sufficiently repressive, totalitarian states, always have to make it a criminal offense to reveal their secrets and ruthlessly persecute those who violate those laws. From Jacob G. Hornberger at fff.org:

Inadvertently released federal documents reveal that U.S. officials have apparently secured a secret indictment against Julian Assange, the head of WikiLeaks who released secret information about the internal workings of the U.S. national-security establishment. In any nation whose government is founded on the concept of a national-security state, that is a cardinal sin, one akin to treason and meriting severe punishment.

Mind you, Assange isn’t being charged with lying or releasing false or fraudulent information about the U.S. national-security state. Everyone concedes that the WikiLeaks information was authentic. His “crime” was in disclosing to people the wrongdoing of the national-security establishment. No one is supposed to do that, even if the information is true and correct.

It’s the same with Edward Snowden, the American contractor with the CIA and the NSA who is now relegated to living in Russia. If Snowden returns home, he faces federal criminal prosecution, conviction, and incarceration for disclosing secrets of the U.S. national-security establishment. Again, his “crime” is disclosing the truth about the internal workings of the national-security establishment, not disseminating false information.

Such secrecy and the severe punishment for people who disclose the secrets to the public were among the things that came with the conversion of the federal government to a national-security state.

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The Blue Wave of Repression, by Justin Raimondo

The elites are going to get their way…or else! From Justin Raimondo at antiwar.com:

Get ready for it

“Patriotism is the opposite of nationalism” bleated the poodle Macron at the Armistice celebration as he yipped and yapped and wagged his tail before the German conqueror of Europe. Meanwhile the Front Nationale outpolled the “mainstream” “centrist” parties in municipal elections for the first time and nationalist Italy is telling the European Union to stay out of its financial affairs.

Despite the best efforts of the Davos crowd, the wave of nationalism that is rising over Europe has global resonance. Nationalism is what’s driving the peace process and reunification effort on the Korean peninsula. Nationalism is what’s defying the pretensions of Spain’s chauvinist government and energizing the Catalonian rebels. Nationalism brought down the Soviet Union: it threatens the EU.

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Is Saudi Arabia the Middle East’s Next Failed State? by Daniel Lazare

If the present government of Saudi Arabia were to fail, it would cause consternation in Washington, to say the least. From Daniel Lazare at consortiumnews.com:

Ibn Khaldun—the famous Tunisian historian, geographer and social theorist—believed that decadence leads to collapse for Muslim dynasties. Such a scenario may be playing out with the Saudis, reports Daniel Lazare.

Reports are growing that Muhammad bin Salman, Saudi Arabia’s hyperactive crown prince, is losing his grip. His economic reform program has stalled since his father, King Salman, nixed plans to privatize 5 percent of Saudi Aramco. The Saudi war in Yemen, which the prince launched in March 2015, is more of a quagmire than ever while the kingdom’s sword rattling with Iran is making the region increasingly jumpy.

Heavy gunfire in Riyadh last April sparked rumors that MBS, as he’s known, had been killed in a palace coup. In May, an exiled Saudi prince urged top members of the royal family to oust him and put an end to his “irrational, erratic, and stupid” rule. Recently, Bruce Riedel, an ex-CIA analyst who heads up the Brookings Institution’s Intelligence Project, reported that the prince is so afraid for his life that he’s taken to spending nights on his yacht in the Red Sea port of Jeddah.

A statue of Ibn Khaldun in Tunis, Tunisia. (Kassus / Wikimedia)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Giving Anarchy a Bad Name, by Jeff Thomas

No government on the planet is ever going to have a kind word for anarchy. From Jeff Thomas at internationalman.com:

Here we have a photo of Corporal Maxwell Klinger, a character in the American television comedy, M.A.S.H., filmed in the early 1970’s.

The Klinger character was written as a soldier in the Korean War, who hoped that, if he became a transvestite, he’d qualify for a Section Eight discharge and would be sent home. In this photo, Corporal Klinger was taking part in a troop inspection.

In the early 70’s, America was still involved in the Viet Nam War. The liberal press graphically covered that war and its travesties – to the point that a majority of Americans became sick of the seemingly endless (and pointless) conflict and thoroughly sympathized with the Klinger character.

But, make no mistake about it: Corporal Klinger was an anarchist. Continue reading