War & regime change drums beating for Iran: Part II (brief, w/ dark blue ink, smile)

Part I is here, ‘As the drumbeats for war on Iran grow more thunderous, ‘education is key’, some history of Iran by way of a Twitter storify by Nyusha (an orphan of the revolution).  It’s longish, and as I’d resized Tweets for the Café, for c99ers, I’d reckoned you could simply click in to read at your leisure without reading the much larger Tweets there, and having to go scrollingsrollingscrolling down.  She’s dug up fantastic archival photos, artwork, and a lot of history that was quite new to me.

The most recent drumming comes from Secretary of Bombast Mike Pompeo: ‘US vows ‘strongest sanctions in history’ on Iran, will ‘crush’ terror proxies; ‘This is just the beginning’: Laying out strategy after exiting nuke deal, Pompeo says Iran must come clean about nuclear program, stop threatening Israel, leave Syria, halt terror’, timesofisrael.com, May 21

“Sanctions are going back in full effect, and new ones are coming,” he warned further. “The Iranian regime should know this is just the beginning.”

While certain restrictions on Iran’s nuclear program expire under the deal, including its ability to enrich uranium, the prohibition on Iran’s building a nuclear weapon is permanent. Former Obama officials who negotiated the pact object to the assertion that the JCPOA enables Tehran to go fully nuclear once those portions of the agreement sunset.

Trump’s newly installed top diplomat also hinted at the possibility of military action should Iranian leaders reconstitute their nuclear program. [the Times’ perception, fwiw, and likely, given the level of the Head Diplomat’s uber-bellicosity…a lot]

“If they restart their nuclear program, they will have big problems, bigger problems than they’ve ever had before,” he said. Pompeo also threatened to “crush” Iran’s terrorist proxies around the world.”

Pompeo declared these to be the conditions under which his boss’s administration would make a firm deal with Iran too be ratified by Congress, instead of rewriting a new JCPOA:

‘We will ensure freedom of navigation on the waters in the region, we will work to prevent and counteract any Iranian malign cyber activity, track down Iranian operatives and their Hezbollah proxies operating around the world and crush them, never allowing Iran cart blanche to dominate the Middle East.

Iran will come clean about all of its past nuclear work, completely stop its uranium enrichment, provide the International Atomic Energy Agency unqualified access to all sites throughout the country, halt its ballistic missile development and testing, close its heavy water reactor (already completed in 2016), end its support for Middle East terrorist groups and respect the sovereignty of the Iraqi government; remove all its troops from Syria, and end its threatening behavior against its neighbors including [pot, kettle leaps to mind]…Israel, as “Our steadfast ally Israel has asserted its sovereign right of self-defense in the Golan Heights, a stance the US will continue to unequivocally support.”

Now the regime-change/putsch drumming is this: if Iran agrees to ‘the let’s-make-a-deal’, all sanctions will be lifted, we’d help modernize their economic system into the international system, (petro-dollars only?  Let us ‘invest’ in  your oil below market value?), which would produce better outcomes for the Iranian people, who have suffered under the oppression of Iran’s tyrannical, theocratic leaders.

“Pompeo also spoke directly to the citizens of Iran, distinguishing them from the regime: “Today, we ask the Iranian people: Is this what you want your country to be known for? For being a co-conspirator with Hezbollah, Hamas, the Taliban, and Al Qaeda?” he asked. “The United States believes you deserve better.” 

Subtext: USAID and the NED CIA front-groups will be even busier fomenting protests for the government to be brought down.  Oh, yeah, and the treasury department will kick the asses of any European companies who do bidness with the evil theocracy.

According to RT, some reactions to Pompeo the Pugilist’s rant:

“Crucially, there’s little doubt that the Trump administration understands Iran would outright reject most, if not all, of the listed demands, which brings the purpose of the entire list into question.

Secretary Pompeo’s speech has not demonstrated how walking away from the JCPOA has made or will make the region safer from the threat of nuclear proliferation, or how it puts us in a better position to influence Iran’s conduct in areas outside the scope of JCPOA. There is no alternative to the JCPOA,” EU foreign policy chief, Federica Mogherini, said Monday commenting on Pompeo’s list. Others said the US list was outright destined to fail – on purpose.”

“I think ultimatum is the right word… When you deliver an ultimatum, its purpose is to have it rejected,” former US diplomat Jim Jatras told RT. “There are people in the Trump administration, who want the regime change in Iran – it’s that simple, and they [want] Iran to reject their terms.”

Jatras believes it’s too early to tell at this stage if US threats against Iran are merely “noise” and pressure tactics like the one used against North Korea, but he says even that pressure could backfire and serve as a positive effect for Tehran by “forcing the Europeans to pull even farther away from the US than they have.” The worst case scenario, he says, is Washington proceeding with a unilateral military action aimed at regime change.

“As you can imagine, Iran will not agree to any of Washington’s demands,” Hamed Mousavi, professor of political science at the University of Tehran, told RT. “It is Iran that should be asking the US why it has not fulfilled its side of the agreement when Iran has fully complied with its obligations under the nuclear deal. Why should Iran negotiate with an administration that is not abiding by an international agreement that is the result of years of intense diplomacy?”

Not to mention the fact that Syria had invited Iran to help Syria fight IS, and not even Putin can demand that Iran vacate Syria, as according to the Kremlin’s read-out he’d announced, as per the Times of Israel coverage.  Also worth noting is that the IAEA has repeatedly stated that Iran is in full compliance with the JCPOA, begging the question: who else would be in charge of deciding if Iran were complying with US demands?  Do you detect the scent of possible Iranian dissident cousins of Curveball testilying?

Now Gareth Porter is still asking ‘Was There Ever an Iranian Nuclear Weapons Program? A review of the evidence points to Israeli and MEK disinformation, not an open-and-shut case, informationclearinghouse, May 15, 2018

“As I detail in my investigative history of the Iran nuclear issue the Obama administration itself fell for a false narrative about a secret Iranian nuclear weapons program allegedly in operation from 2001 to 2003. After Netanyahu’s April 30 show, former secretary of state John Kerry tweeted: “Every detail PM Netanyahu presented yesterday was every reason the world came together to apply years of sanctions and negotiate the Iran nuclear agreement—because the threat was real and had to be stopped.”

”In mid-2004, the CIA acquired a massive set of documents that were said to have come from a secret Iranian nuclear weapons research program. Bush administration officials leaked a sensational story to selected news outlets about the intelligence find, describing to the New York Times what that newspaper described as Iranian drawings “trying to develop a compact warhead to fit atop its Shahab missile.” The same story of Iran mating a nuclear weapon to its longer-range ballistic missile was given to the Washington Post and the Wall Street Journal.

But both the real provenance of the apparently incriminating documents and specific details about the documents themselves indicate that they are fraudulent. A major clue about the papers’ true origins was made public in November 2004, when Karsten Voigt, the coordinator for German-North American cooperation in the German Foreign Office, was quoted by the Wall Street Journal warning that the documents had been provided by “an Iranian dissident group,” and that the United States and Europe “shouldn’t let their Iran policy be influenced by single-source headlines.”

Yeah, that sounds only too familiar, doesn’t it?

Porter was finally able to interview Karsten Voight in 2013, three years after he’d retired from the foreign office.  What Voight said is a lollapalooza of the epic perfidy, disinformation, neglected warnings of such to Colin Powell, George Tenet and others, including this:

“But it wasn’t just the provenance of the MEK documents that was suspect. Their authenticity was never clearly established by the CIA, which could not rule out the possibility of falsification, according to the Washington Post. Mohamed ElBaradei, then director-general of the IAEA, was put under heavy political pressure by a U.S.-led coalition to publish a report endorsing those documents as evidence against Iran. But Elbaradei responded to the pressure by declaring in an October 2009 interview, “The IAEA is not making any judgment at all whether Iran even had weaponization studies before because there is a major question of authenticity of the documents.”

It’s seriously worth bookmarking, then reading as one can find the time.  Post-Albaradei, the choice of the more…pliable, shall we say…(Gareth Porter 2012 at the link) Yukia Amano to head the IAEA was brilliant.

There are more Parts to come as there’s a lot more to learn and assess, but I’m trying to keep it simple.

Morning update: ‘Rouhani on Pompeo: We do not accept that a spy chief decides for others’, alarabiya.net, May 22

““Who are you to decide for Iran and the world?” Rouhani said in a statement carried by multiple Iranian news agencies.  “The world today does not accept that the United States decides for the world. Countries have their independence,” he added.”

(cross-posted from Café Babylon)

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Big Al's picture

One of the top neocon think tanks, the Brookings Institute, issued a paper called "Which Path to Persia?: Options for a New American Strategy Toward Iran"

"...any military operation against Iran will likely be very unpopular around the world and require the proper international context—both to ensure the logistical support the operation would require and to minimize the blowback from it.
The paper then lays out how the US could appear to the world as a peacemaker and depict Iran's betrayal of a "very good deal" as the pretext for an otherwise reluctant US military response (emphasis added):

The best way to minimize international opprobrium and maximize support (however, grudging or covert) is to strike only when there is a widespread conviction that the Iranians were given but then rejected a superb offer—one so good that only a regime determined to acquire nuclear weapons and acquire them for the wrong reasons would turn it down. Under those circumstances, the United States (or Israel) could portray its operations as taken in sorrow, not anger, and at least some in the international community would conclude that the Iranians “brought it on themselves” by refusing a very good deal."

That's obviously what this is all about. It's certainly not about nukes or a "bad deal" as Gareth Porter and others have explained.

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wendy davis's picture

@Big Al

and in fact tony cartalucci’s reprised it several times over the past year (sometimes w/ brooking's massive corporate funders noted), and has again as of may 9.

but brookings had claimed iran has nukes, but that tehran wouldn’t use them recklessly, but as a deterrent, yes? tony’s conclusions seem to indicate that all the signatories to the JPCOA knew it was designed to be reneged, including russia. i’m not seein’ that one, myself. the EU claims their nations will still honor it, whatever that means. solely the US, i reckon, but even that i'm not positive about. but enter bibi's speech, the great orange one' blaring: 'see, we knew iran was lying!'

he does however note this:
“Russia's presence in Syria from 2015 onward has greatly complicated even this plan - which was written out in great detail in Brookings' 2009 policy paper. Brookings policymakers seemed to have laid out a plan that was clearly put in motion - but a plan that never considered the possibility of Russia intervening directly in the Middle East and placing itself between both Syria and Iran and nearly two decades of US regime change across the region.”

but i find that gareth porter's work just fine here, myself, as in: the reports of their having nuclear weapons were proven bogus'. but of course, that''s just me (smile).

and those who imagine that amerika would wage war on iran alone are just silly, bibi wants war just as much as john bolton does, and pompeo did in 2014:
"Before becoming CIA director Pompeo broached the possibility of using force to destroy Iran's nuclear capacity. “In an unclassified setting, it is under 2,000 sorties to destroy the Iranian nuclear capacity,” he said in 2014. “This is not an insurmountable task for the coalition forces.”

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Big Al's picture

@wendy davis which they've evidently not come close, should be irrelevant considering who we're talking about here as the two primary instigators, the U.S., with over 5000 nukes and the only country to use them and threaten continually to use them, and Israel, which has anywhere from 200-500 and refuses to acknowledge it or sign the NPT. Neither country has any legal or moral right to make these demands of Iran. Anyone who believes otherwise is fully propagandized. I'm not really sure why Iran agreed to the deal in the first place although different factions disagreed on that. I mean, I know why they did it, but they had to have known it would come to this now.

So that alone shows the Iran "deal" was never about nukes, it was always just a step in the regime change game.

And we should remind that Iran has always been on the table, remember Wes Clark's information about the seven countries in five years, with "finishing up with Iran".

Ya, and evidently the E.U, Germany, France, etc., are going to fold on opposing Trump on this. Who would have guessed.

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wendy davis's picture

@Big Al

had a nuclear bomb (of course they enrich uranium for their russian-built nuclear power reactors (blech), should be irrelevant considering what you note, still in every westerners (and wahabbists) axis of evil. yes, didn’t wes clark cite those nations form a PNAC memo? ad in comparison...sure, but to the wester hegemon, iran and amerika are the good guys, says bibi.

whether or not iran should have okayed the JCPOA might be an issue, given the disinformation of the charges, which may be reflected in this from gareth porter in his OP:
“But a far more effective counter would have been the truth—that the long-accepted accusation about Iran’s covert nuclear weapons program is the product of an elaborate disinformation operation based on documents forged by Mossad, Israel’s foreign intelligence agency.”

even in 2012 the IAEA seemed to have been dickin’ around with the treaty, the contents, etc., (okay that’s too much shorthand, but...) all due to unnamed western sources. (the 2012 porter link up yonder)

but why not agree to most demands than rather than get bombed, toppled, etc.?

has the EU folded? kinda overly nuanced w/hidden hyperbole, but: ‘Pompeo's demands don't make it easier for West to influence Iran – EU foreign policy chief’, 22 May, 2018, via RT

"Mogherini has become one of the most vocal defenders of the 2015 nuclear accord since the US pull-out earlier this month, reiterating the deal should remain intact as the basis for any future talks with Iran, including over its missile program that has been a major irritant for the West. Denouncing US President Donald Trump's decision to quit the landmark agreement, she stated that it was "not a bilateral agreement and it is not in the hands of any single country to terminate it unilaterally."

Last week, Mogherini reaffirmed that the EU countries that are party to the deal are "determined" to ensure that it stays in place, while European and Iranian experts "hopefully very quickly" work out a solution to the crisis.

Save the US, all other signatories – the UK, France, Germany, Russia, China, and Iran – have vowed to stick to the deal, which caps Iran's uranium enrichment in return for sanctions relief.

Noting that the agreement is "the result of more than a decade of complex and delicate negotiations," Mogherini said that it was "the best possible outcome" of the talks and that there was "no alternative." That is despite the adverse impact the reintroduction of the US economic and financial sanctions on Iran can have on EU businesses.

is the 'caps uranium enrichment' light water (power plants) v. heavy water (weapons grade) in the original treaty? i'm embarrassed to say i've forgotten.

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mimi's picture

@Big Al
It's not over until the fat lady sings.

Ya, and evidently the E.U, Germany, France, etc., are going to fold on opposing Trump on this. Who would have guessed.

Meanwhile I need some not so fat ladies from the underground singing to keep my sanity.

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@mimi

which would be in nobody's interest, apart from the short-term for America's MIC and psychopathic PTB.

This sort of thing makes it obvious that the world must stand strong against the PTB.

All emphasis mine:

https://www.rt.com/usa/427686-trump-korea-allies-military/

‘Powerful and ready’: Trump touts military strength after cancelling Kim summit
Published time: 24 May, 2018 16:00
Edited time: 24 May, 2018 16:32

After cancelling a long-awaited summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, President Donald Trump reverted to his earlier rhetoric, saying that the US military is “more ready than...ever before,” Kim does something 'foolish.'

Delivering remarks on the cancellation Thursday, Trump chose to spend much of his time touting his military strength.

“Our military, which is by far the most powerful anywhere in the world,” he said, “is ready if necessary,” should Kim react badly to the cancellation. Trump also announced that South Korea and Japan were onboard and ready to shoulder some of the cost of military operations, should the need arise.

Trump called the latest development "setback," yet he expressed hope for the positive outcome. In his usual manner, he said that that the summit still may happen.

“If and when Kim Jong Un chooses to engage in constructive dialog, I am waiting,” said Trump. Failing that, he warned Kim against “foolish and reckless” acts.

The cancellation came hours after Pyongyang dismantled its nuclear test site as promised. ...

Weird, when I went to copy the notification URL of the below article, it immediately changed to that of one I'd looked at previously; thought that I must have somehow accidentally clicked wrong, as I'd clicked just to get the option to copy highlight, but 'undo' kept going back to other previous URLs I'd visited, rather than to the original URL and nothing shows when I try to look it up, so, unless my mouse has suddenly become squeaky, I'm guessing that since the live-stream finished, this one has been deleted and that a new page may soon become available when searched under this title?

Putin & Macron speak to press as French leader comes to Russia for ‘demanding dialogue’ (WATCH LIVE)
Published time: 24 May, 2018 18:21

The presidents of Russia and France are holding a joint media conference in St. Petersburg, where Emmanuel Macron arrived on Thursday. Vladimir Putin visited Paris last year.

France and Russia currently find themselves on the same side over US withdrawal from a multilateral agreement with Iran, the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JPOA), which both Moscow and Paris want to preserve. But there are also many points of conflict between the two and Macron didn’t pull punches in the public during Putin’s visit to France.

Macron’s visit coincides with Russia’s largest business forum, the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum (SPIEF), which is held annually in the northern city that used to be the country’s capital.

(Mouse worked fine on copying the URL here...)

https://www.rt.com/business-projects/427704-france-signs-contracts-with-...

France signs contracts with Russia to invest 1bn euro
Published time: 24 May, 2018 18:36

Then there's this:

https://www.rt.com/news/427703-putin-macron-press-conference/

France recognizes Russia's new role in international relations, including in Middle East - Macron
Published time: 24 May, 2018 18:21
Edited time: 24 May, 2018 19:39

France recognizes Russia's new role in international relations, including in the Middle East, said President Emmanuel Macron at a joint media conference with Russia’s Vladimir Putin in St. Petersburg.

Macron’s visit coincides with Russia’s largest business forum, the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum (SPIEF), which is held annually in the northern city that used to be the country’s capital.

France and Russia currently find themselves on the same side over US withdrawal from a multilateral agreement with Iran, the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JPOA), which both Moscow and Paris want to preserve. But there are also many points of conflict between the two and Macron didn’t pull punches in the public during Putin’s visit to France.

This reads like an Onion piece and I hope that the ...?froisappinstalled=1... at the end of the URL refers to the notifications system...

https://www.rt.com/usa/427593-pentagon-report-munitions-bombs/?froisappi...

Fragile: Pentagon report raises alarm that US industry can’t support war for much longer
Published time: 23 May, 2018 20:51
Edited time: 24 May, 2018 08:20

Between globalization and nearly 20 years of constant warfare, the industrial part of the US military-industrial complex is not looking so good, putting future wars at risk, according to a new Pentagon report.

The Annual Industrial Capabilities report, published by the Pentagon’s Office of Manufacturing and Industrial Base Policy, warns that reliance on foreign-sourced materials combined with “twenty years of intermittent conflict,” have put a strain on US manufacturers of weapons, parts and ammunition.

“While US national defense demands for materials are seldom unmet, there exist risks to their supply now and risks are anticipated in the foreseeable future,” the report says, describing the two broad trends as the scarcity of materials used in new technologies and the US’ growing reliance on foreign supply sources.

Both US economic security and national defense are at risk due to “high US import reliance on foreign countries who may become adversaries and cut off peacetime supply during future conflicts,” the report says.

One example is Dechlorane, a flame retardant used in insulation on all US missile systems. The sole source of the material is the Belgian company Occidental Chemical. Worse yet, the precursor to make Dechlorane used to come from China, but is no longer available, “so there is now no source for Dechlorane in the world.”

US fighter jets rely on Sidewinder and AMRAAM air-to-air missiles to dominate the skies, but what happens when they run out? The sole source of dimeryl diisocyanate, a key ingredient in the missiles’ propellant, has informed the Pentagon that it will be leaving the business soon, leaving the US with “no qualified source,” according to the report.

One of the biggest problems noted by the Pentagon is the lack of diversity in the industrial base. About 97 percent of the DoD funds for missile and munitions procurement goes to just two companies, Raytheon and Lockheed Martin. Almost all second- and third-tier suppliers of munitions components, 98 percent in both instances, are sole sources.

Of particular concern to the report’s authors were thermal batteries, solid rocket motors (SRM), fuzes and small turbine engines, which all rely on just one or two manufacturers.

President Donald Trump has raised the Pentagon’s funding in order to rebuild the “depleted” military and launched a crusade to revive US manufacturing, but that may not be enough.

“We may be too far down the path to resurrect an authentic munitions industrial base,” Mackenzie Eaglen of the American Enterprise Institute told Defense News, commenting on the report. “So then the question becomes: Now what?”

With the US capability to produce vital parts and materials for weapons systems and ammunition dwindling, Washington is facing the risk that “a conflict with China could rely on Chinese-made parts,” Defense News noted.

Munitions aren’t the only problem either. Maintenance has been hit just as hard by the years of “overuse and underfunding” of industrial infrastructure, according to the report. US naval shipyards, for example, have not been able to meet the maintenance needs, resulting in compounding problems.

The neglect has been so severe that “in fiscal years 2000 through 2016, inadequate facilities and equipment led to maintenance delays that contributed in part to more than 1,300 lost operational days… for aircraft carriers and 12,500 lost operational days for submarines.”

A January report by the Pentagon’s director of operations and testing noted that half of the F-35 stealth fighter fleet is not mission capable due to supply and maintenance problems. Lockheed Martin’s futuristic fighter has a lifetime cost estimated at over $1 trillion.

Has the US PTB's global take-over machine finally bombed itself into a corner? One can only hope, although this is likely merely an excuse to suck out the very last drop of life-blood from the American people to feed the monster.

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Psychopathy is not a political position, whether labeled 'conservatism', 'centrism' or 'left'.

A tin labeled 'coffee' may be a can of worms or pathology identified by a lack of empathy/willingness to harm others to achieve personal desires.

mimi's picture

@Ellen North
impolite. I have difficulties to concentrate to read all the links and leave this up to another time when I feel better. Thanks for all your efforts to bring light into the whole affair. It seems to be quite a pile of work to do.

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detroitmechworks's picture

Is this what you want your country to be known for? For being a co-conspirator with Israel, Mossad, the CIA, and Saudi Arabia? Cascadia believes you deserve better.

I can play that game too.
And It sounds better when I do it. It helps if you just want freedom, not a profit.

/snark

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I do not pretend I know what I do not know.

wendy davis's picture

@detroitmechworks

and thank you for the irish revolutionary folk song from long ago.

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wendy davis's picture

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wendy davis's picture

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which are too-often unmentioned, especially as regarding some of the thoroughly disproven lies propagated against Iran.

The Likud are so obviously reality-deficient it's amazing that anybody outside of The equally-obviously reality-deficient US Psychopaths That Be, et al, ever takes them seriously.

Here's the world's most ludicrous headline:

https://www.rt.com/news/427394-israel-strikes-golan-iran/

Syria fired over 100 missiles at our war planes, Israeli Air Force chief claims
Published time: 22 May, 2018 10:08
Edited time: 22 May, 2018 14:23

Syrian air defense forces fired more than 100 missiles at Israeli planes attacking targets in Syria during the intense confrontation two weeks ago, an Israeli Air Force commander told colleagues from other nations.

Major-General Amikam Norkin briefed fellow military officials from more than 20 nations during a three-day conference held in the city of Herzliya to celebrate the 70th anniversary of the arm of the Israeli military he commands. He detailed the Israeli point of view on the hostilities, which happened on the night of May 9 and involved the forces of Israel, Syria and Iran.

The general said 32 missiles were fired from the Syrian territory at Israeli positions in the occupied Golan Heights. Previous reports by the Israel Defense Force (IDF) stated the number as 20. Four of the missiles were shot down by Israel before they could reach the Golan Heights, he added, confirming earlier reports.

The Israeli planes involved in the operation were attacked by more than 100 surface-to-air missiles during the confrontation, Norkin reported. He reiterated that Israel has ramped up attacks on Syrian territory in response to the alleged build-up of Iranian forces there.

The surge in hostilities two weeks ago began, according to Israel, after Iran launched the attack on the Golan Heights. The IDF responded by sending 28 fighter jets to seek out targets in Syria for about two hours with some 60 air-to-surface missiles.

Israel has been using the presence of Iranian or Iran-affiliated troops in Syria – such as the Lebanese militant group Hezbollah – as a justification to conduct airstrikes on Syrian territory, claiming its actions are in self-defense. The militias have been instrumental in stabilizing the government of Syria and turning the tide against the Sunni Islamist insurgency.

Iran and Syria accuse the Israelis of violating international law by its continued involvement in Syria and say it simply uses any pretext it can concoct to hurt Syria.

Russia is keeping its distance from the brewing Iran-Israel proxy war in Syria, but has warned on many occasions that Israeli interference may set back the security situation there, plunging the country back into chaos. Russia stated goal has been to defeat the jihadists in Syria, deploying its air force and commando troops to help Damascus.

All of these psychopaths need to be committed to - rather than running - the asylum.

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4 users have voted.

Psychopathy is not a political position, whether labeled 'conservatism', 'centrism' or 'left'.

A tin labeled 'coffee' may be a can of worms or pathology identified by a lack of empathy/willingness to harm others to achieve personal desires.

wendy davis's picture

@Ellen North

i wonder how many were destroyed by the missile defense s-200s? not that either 'sides' reports will be expressly the truth, but that israel believes that the occupied golan heights belongs to israel is one of the greatest self-deceptions going on since 1967.

have you had time to look at nyusha's storify yet? lots of good things to know there, from the cia/uk spooks's overthrow of mossadegh onward.

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wendy davis's picture

‘Trump Adopts “Looney Tunes” Foreign Policy from Think Tanks’, new eastern outlook

it hadn’t occurred to me to dig into why pompeo had delivered his bombast against iran at the heritage institute, but i’m sure glad butler did. (proving again: ‘the butler did it’)

first he skewers amerikan foreign policy as the joke that it is, including using forever military force instead f actual diplomacy...since post wwII. he mentions the solari report and the pentagon’s ‘missing’ 21 million dollars, and imagines what the world might have looked like with that money to aid it.

“That’s right, look up Article I, Section 9, Clause 7, of the U.S. Constitution. The law says there must be an accounting, but there is none – Washington spent almost 70,000 from every man, woman, and child in the country on mist, smoke, a mirage, or to bribe 1,000 politicians worldwide. But let’s forget for a moment that the United States Federal Reserve and the member banks in the system shelling out taxpayer cash through the Pentagon bagman.”

he then skewers the trump administration’s plans for a vast military build-up against invented enemies while noting what crap americans implements of war are comparatively, then names the failures of amerikan regime change schemes that have reshaped the western world into chaos.

“Turning to Trump, we find a defense/business establishment gearing up for a huge payday. Evidence of my assertion can most easily at Washington think tanks like the Heritage Foundation, which is purported to be driving the Trump policies we see taking shape. In the executive summary of this year’s Index of US Military Strength begins with: “The US military is only marginally able to meet the demands of defending America’s vital national interests.”

This pseudo-scholarly assessment of “threats” to American “interests” is enough to make anyone desiring peace stick to their stomach. If these psychopaths are the tail wagging the “Trump dog,” the American people can count on another decade or more of war at least. Worst case, Trump and the military industrial complex push Russia (categorized as an aggressive threat) to far to plunge us into global war. In the report, Trump’s brilliant advisers categorize Russia and China right alongside Middle Eastern terror, Iran, North Korea, and the Af-Pak brand of terrorists. Trump’s brainiacs go so far as to rate United States military branches in terms Chicken Little would understand.

I have developed my own “the sky is falling” scale to coincide with Heritage’s plea for more defense spending.” his closing is as wryly hilarious as you might expect from butler.

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Big Al's picture

@wendy davis in my essay, about the Heritage Foundation calling for more imperialism spending. It's what Trump ran on, he repeatedly called for significant increases in defense spending while campaigning, the neocon think tanks have also been calling for more, more. To do what they want to do, I can see why.

As for that 21 trillion. I haven't read the study but just offhand, the defense budget for the last 30 years hasn't equaled 21 trillion. Maybe they're going back that far, I don't know.

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@Big Al

For personal goals?

Perhaps much of that 21 trillion was actually drug/Foundation money, perhaps to fund terrorists/private armies, perhaps for those giant underground malls (which may not be fictional after all, dunno,) where some of TPTB apparently plan to hide from any/all of the disasters they create?

Virtually everybody among the super-wealthy, including various politicians, seemingly has these Foundations, many of which may be for personal benefit - but the Clinton Foundation has raised billions, yet did almost almost nothing charitable other than purchasing some cut-rate, watered-down AIDs drugs to help kill poor, sick people more rapidly, fund some expensive money-makers for a few of Those Who Matter in a disaster area, while taking credit, in at least one instance, for somebody else's effort at (I think it was) a school building? and a bunch of donor dinners.

And there were, of course, a number of other existing Clinton Foundations taking over for the Clinton Foundation that was shuttered, so whatever's going on could continue.

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3 users have voted.

Psychopathy is not a political position, whether labeled 'conservatism', 'centrism' or 'left'.

A tin labeled 'coffee' may be a can of worms or pathology identified by a lack of empathy/willingness to harm others to achieve personal desires.

Big Al's picture

@Ellen North mainstream news if it was so openly discussed. I've assumed it's based on the total DOD budget which like I said doesn't even close to 21 trillion in the last 30 years. The manner in which it's being reported also makes me wonder. It's being played up as "missing", or the Pentagon can't "find", making it seem like it's a waste, fraud and abuse thing, when in actuality it's an accounting/audit issue.
It's like someone wants the focus on accounting instead of the criminality of military imperialism.
Smile or maybe I'm just being paranoid.

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3 users have voted.

@Big Al

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3 users have voted.

Psychopathy is not a political position, whether labeled 'conservatism', 'centrism' or 'left'.

A tin labeled 'coffee' may be a can of worms or pathology identified by a lack of empathy/willingness to harm others to achieve personal desires.

Big Al's picture

@Ellen North interesting because this news seems to be making the rounds now. From Forbes. Something about unsubstantiated accounting adjustments, based on an OIG report. So I doubt the OIG would get too deep into criminality, but I haven't read this. Sounds like the adjustments in the books don't nearly match the actual budget, or something like that.

https://www.forbes.com/sites/kotlikoff/2017/12/08/has-our-government-spe...

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Big Al's picture

@Ellen North "An appendix to the July 2016 report shows $2 trillion in changes to the Army General Fund balance sheet due to unsupported adjustments. On the asset side, there is $794 billion increase in the Army's Fund Balance with the U.S. Treasury. There is also an increase of $929 billion in the Army's Accounts Payable. This information raises additional major questions. First, what is the source of the additional $794 billion in the Army's Fund Balance? This adjustment represents more than six times appropriated spending. Second, do these transfers represent a flow of funds to the Army beyond those authorized by Congress? Third, were these funds authorized and if so when and by whom? Fourth, what is the source of these funds? Finally, the $929 billion in Accounts Payable appears to represent an amount owed for items or services purchased on credit. What entities have received or will receive payment?

The July 2016 report is not the only such report of unsubstantiated adjustments. Mark Skidmore and Catherine Austin Fitts, former Assistant Secretary of Housing and Urban Development, conducted a search of government websites and found similar reports dating back to 1998. While the documents are incomplete, original government sources indicate $21 trillion in unsupported adjustments have been reported for the Department of Defense and the Department of Housing and Urban Development for the years 1998-2015."

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@Big Al

So, I wonder what happens to the money from all of that CIA drug-running, and what it's used for? Doesn't it seem also to you likely that, as one possibility, this could have been funneled through to pay for such things as off-the-books terrorist funding around the world?

Going back to the start of Gladios, actually - how was that funded in so many NATO and other countries since WW2, while keeping it secret from elected government?

And does it really seem unlikely that the various Foundations of various PTB could be funneling money though military channels not potentially even just for the global terrorism programs but to have perhaps personal things done in utter secrecy, such as special luxury bunkers for The Right People - those behind the insane policies of the US? To keep that Shadow Government (or whatever it was that they called the secret back-up 'government' which was to take over in emergency) safe, even if all of their countrymen perished?

If those rumoured giant mall-bunkers are real (no idea, but they don't sound unlikely, either, considering the warmongering billionaires, industries and politicians,) they'd certainly cost a bomb!

Just speculation on my part, of course, but the above seems to me to be something that would explain the bizarre numbers, not to mention how such expensive horrors were paid for without anything officially showing up on the books.

On the other hand, I do sometimes talk though my (metaphorical) hat...

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3 users have voted.

Psychopathy is not a political position, whether labeled 'conservatism', 'centrism' or 'left'.

A tin labeled 'coffee' may be a can of worms or pathology identified by a lack of empathy/willingness to harm others to achieve personal desires.

wendy davis's picture

@Big Al

but i didn't take the time to even look. sorry i don't have time to read and comment here much, but...there it is. i'm old n slow n in the way by now. but your title was indeed provocative.

but you will enjoy this, i reckon: ‘Bernie Sanders defends American imperialism at town hall on Iran’, Tom Hall 22 May 2018, wsws.org

“The discussion brought together a number of former State Department officials and think tank academics who, along with Sanders, presented an entirely conventional, pro-imperialist critique of the Trump administration’s decision to pull out of the 2015 agreement between Iran, Britain, France, Germany, the European Union, Russia and China that was brokered by the Obama administration.

“The pro-imperialist and pro-Zionist outlook of Sanders and his panelists was demonstrated by their reluctance to address the mass murder of unarmed Palestinian demonstrators in Gaza just one day before the May 15 town hall event. More than 60 men, women and children were killed and over 3,000 were wounded in a massacre that recalled atrocities such as Amritsar in India and Sharpeville in South Africa.”

“Sanders summed up the concerns animating his holding of the panel discussion in a column he published just prior to the event in the Guardian newspaper. He wrote: “To be clear, Iran is engaged in a lot of bad behavior, including backing dictator Bashar al-Assad’s war against the Syrian people, support for violent extremist groups like Hezbollah in Lebanon and Hamas in Palestine, and human rights abuses inside Iran. However, if we are genuinely concerned about these Iranian policies, as I am, this is the worst possible course. It will make addressing all of these other issues harder.”

In other words, Sanders, along with the majority of the foreign policy establishment, views the scuttling of the Iran nuclear deal as counterproductive to the goal of subordinating Iran to Washington’s drive for hegemony in the Middle East."

hall then names the panelists (Rob Malley, president of the International Crisis Group (jeebus), a George Soros-backed transnational NGO with a strong anti-Russian bias) and some of their hasbarist comments with nods to breaking “the faith of our allies” and “severely damaged American credibility.

sanders at the guardian he'd quoted.

“To be clear, Iran is engaged in a lot of bad behavior, including backing dictator Bashar al-Assad’s war against the Syrian people, support for violent extremist groups like Hezbollah in Lebanon and Hamas in Palestine, and human rights abuses inside Iran. However, if we are genuinely concerned about these Iranian policies, as I am, this is the worst possible course. It will make addressing all of these other issues harder. Unfortunately, we heard no strategy from Trump when he announced his decision, just the usual bluster.

Bluster and Iran-bashing will not get us to a better future. We need to continue to try to talk with Iran’s government, seek a better relationship with the Iranian people, and a more constructive role for Iran in the region.” and tra la la.

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Big Al's picture

@wendy davis that it doesn't matter what he does they'll still support him?
Much the same with Sanders, particularly regarding imperialism and Zionist apartheid.

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wendy davis's picture

@Big Al

ah, the cruise missile 'leftists'.

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@wendy davis @wendy davis

Page not found
The requested page "/content/:%20%E2%80%98Trump%20Adopts...

Going to look it up under the title you so fortunately included.

Edited to remove the bulk of coding gibberish quoted, as it extended not only off the page but, it seems, off the screen... and re-edited for the classic letter-typo which forms my trademark.

Editing to say that I don't seem to be able to look it up, get mostly unrelated results up top with a few Looney Tunes references. I still seem to be on Duck Duck Go... hope the article and all references weren't removed from the interwebz?

And C-99 instantly timed out? Trying again, this edit should, at least go on without duping, if it did somehow get there without letting me through...

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2 users have voted.

Psychopathy is not a political position, whether labeled 'conservatism', 'centrism' or 'left'.

A tin labeled 'coffee' may be a can of worms or pathology identified by a lack of empathy/willingness to harm others to achieve personal desires.

wendy davis's picture

@Ellen North

here it is. i'll fix it up yonder too. oh, and a c99 tech tip: each time you edit a comment, it doubles the @so and so's, and scoots the subject line to the right.

and here's the MSU, not MIT, study hyperlink.

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@wendy davis

I should have specified, however, that I was unable to access the link beside:

phil butler today:

‘Trump Adopts “Looney Tunes” Foreign Policy from Think Tanks’

and was unable to search for that title and get anything even remotely related to anything in the title apart from a few Looney Tunes references scattered amid a ton of unrelated stuff. Sounded interesting, though.

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2 users have voted.

Psychopathy is not a political position, whether labeled 'conservatism', 'centrism' or 'left'.

A tin labeled 'coffee' may be a can of worms or pathology identified by a lack of empathy/willingness to harm others to achieve personal desires.

wendy davis's picture

@Ellen North @Ellen North

i was juggling links in my long, long, word doc w/ a lame mouse, and put in the wsws link instead.

here it is again (she sayed hopefully). ti time i'll check after i hit the button.

on edit: goooooooooooaaallllll!

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3 users have voted.

@wendy davis @wendy davis

And - despite the subject - made me laugh out loud at one point, mainly because it's so impossibly, ridiculously true:

https://journal-neo.org/2018/05/22/trump-adopts-looney-tunes-foreign-pol...

... Since we cannot ascertain where this Mount Everest of 100 dollar bills went to, let’s take a brief look at what the Trump administration has budgeted that is on the books. A story this morning about the pride of the US Navy, the 12.9 billion USS Gerald R. Ford headed back to port for fixing propulsion systems failures is a good start. Okay, all my shipmates in the Navy will explain that the Ford is only in trials, but Trump’s planned behemoth 355 ship navy may just sink the US Forget the fact America’s only conceivable enemies can blast aircraft carriers out of the water with the push of a button. Trump wants a 12 carrier navy also comprised of 66 SSN nuclear attack subs. It’s as if Trump and his backers are planning for war with alien space invaders armed with Japanese battleships or old Soviet Akula class subs. Madness, American loading up for decades more useless wars against ghost enemies. What does all this useless expenditure say about our diplomacy? I think this is a good question for Americans to ask. ...

Followed one link to here:

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-pentagon-waste-specialreport/spec...

Special Report: The Pentagon's doctored ledgers conceal epic waste
Scot J. Paltrow

LETTERKENNY ARMY DEPOT, Chambersburg, Pennsylvania (Reuters) - Linda Woodford spent the last 15 years of her career inserting phony numbers in the U.S. Department of Defense’s accounts. ...

And man, does that ever sound like a planned muddle in which all kinds of shenanigans could sink without a tell-tale bubble...

No central planning or co-ordination between the departments is some excuse, but mere incompetence can't explain the way this has continued, in a time when computers are now capable of much more than (edit: they were in) 2005 - and where incompatible systems were arranged for in each of 4 different departments and this never corrected? And so very many contracts will never be audited?

I'm betting on a planned muddle for exploitation, myself...

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4 users have voted.

Psychopathy is not a political position, whether labeled 'conservatism', 'centrism' or 'left'.

A tin labeled 'coffee' may be a can of worms or pathology identified by a lack of empathy/willingness to harm others to achieve personal desires.

wendy davis's picture

@Ellen North

'why do people rob banks the pentagon? cuz that's where the money is.'

but sure, among other things afghan poppy money for bribery, and you may remember that when nick turse once dug deep into the subject, he'd discovered the million other departments that were hiding pentagon bucks, and he'd said the figure he'd come up with was almost double the publicly stated expenses, i.e. shadow military off-books 'budget'.

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@wendy davis

until and unless the shell-game is halted by the abandonment of the Global Dominance thing and an effort to pare the military to an all-round manageable level, one suitable for a country which had no fear of invasion/attack until now, when forcing the saner portions of the world to unite in self-defense.

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1 user has voted.

Psychopathy is not a political position, whether labeled 'conservatism', 'centrism' or 'left'.

A tin labeled 'coffee' may be a can of worms or pathology identified by a lack of empathy/willingness to harm others to achieve personal desires.