Archive | June 5th, 2012

TUT: The Heresy of Christian Zionism

Revolt of the Plebs Pod-Broadcast June 5, 2012

by crescentandcross

The ONE AND ONLY Keith Johnson interviews THE ONE AND ONLY Chuck Carlson, discussing the heresy of Christian Zionism and its destructive effects on the world today.

rotp5jun2012carlson999xyxy.mp3

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West, regional puppets follow Zio-Nazi agenda in Syria: Analyst

NOVANEWS
Interview with Mark Glenn, from the Crescent and Cross Solidarity Movement, Idaho.‎

The UN doing this and warning of the civil war… This is the way of preparing the public mind for countries to push for ‎military action to go in to Syria. It really is a very diabolical method that they use to justify going in and killing scores of ‎people.‎ But this would not be taking place in Syria were it not for the active involvement and participation and support of the West, ‎aligned with Israel – doing Israel’s bidding for all intents and purposes.”

The Syrian opposition claims to have created a new armed front to unite forces along the Turkish border that have taken up arms against Damascus.

A member of Syrian rebels told the press about their existence in the Turkish city of Istanbul. The front says it’s an umbrella group of some 12-thousand registered members ready to fight the government of President Bashar al-Assad. Meanwhile, armed gangs say they killed at least 80 security forces over the weekend.

Russia and China continue to support a political solution to the problem while the UN beef’s up talk of a potential civil war in the country and US Susan Rice talks of illegal military intervention into Syria without US Congressional or UN approval.

Press TV has conducted an interview with Mark Glenn, from the Crescent and Cross Solidarity Movement from Idaho to further talk over the issue. What follows is an approximate transcript of the interview.

Press TV: A new front has just been launched in Turkey to fight the Syrian government. What do you make of the timing of this announcement, specifically in light of the ceasefire that should be in place in Syria, technically speaking?

Glenn: I see this as a desperate move on the part of the West who tries to restart this insurgency against the Syrian government because it is not going as well as they had originally planned.

They have been at this now for 15 months and they are no closer to having Assad be weaker than they were 15 months ago.

So I think that because of the nature of insurgency itself, the fact that it seems to be very fractured; [Burhan] Ghalyoun is not particularly popular and is seen as something of a demagogue and sees the revolution as the beginning to an end, What this means is the Western coalition… to switch leadership to bring in Seyyed who is a Kurd and to try to reenergize this revolution in the hopes that maybe they’ll have better luck this time than they had over the last 15 months.

Press TV: British SAS forces are already on Syrian soil aiding the armed rebels to fight the government, and the West as a whole continues to keep the military option on the table. Can the US hope for a Libya-like scenario to succeed in Syria?

Glenn: Well, not as long as Russia is remaining in the position that she’s in, in all of this, which is that she is firmly opposed to any obvious and open military actions whether it’s unilaterally in the form of the US just going in there or whether it is bilateral in either the form of a NATO-type operation as we saw take place in Libya or whether it’s actually a UN operation.

So, Russia is the wildcard in all of this. Russia has made it clear that she does not want the US or any of these Western forces aligned with Israel to go in and do to Syria what they have done to Libya. And Russia is capable of taking care of herself: She is a military force to be reckoned with; she has nuclear weapons; and she has a lot of pull diplomatically among countries that are forming this aligned movement against the West and against Israel.

So at this point it really hinges on what Russia does. If Russia seems to buckle or she seems to backtrack on this or if God forbid she strikes some kind of deal with the West and in particular with America then we will very likely see Western troops going in and doing to Syria what they did to Libya.

Press TV: The UN along with China continues to warn of a looming full scale civil war based on ethnic and religious divide erupting in Syria. But isn’t that the divide-and-conquer approach the West has taken to the whole situation?

Glenn: Of course. The UN doing this and warning of the civil war… This is the way of preparing the public mind for countries to push for military action to go in to Syria. It really is a very diabolical method that they use to justify going in and killing scores of people.

But this would not be taking place in Syria were it not for the active involvement and participation and support of the West, aligned with Israel – doing Israel’s bidding for all intents and purposes.

It just goes to show you that any country in the world, particularly a third world country with natural resources, any country in the world that does any kind of business with the West and then expects that they’re going to be treated with an even hand is just living in a dream world.

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Israel Indicts Freedom of the Press: Kam, Blau and Vanunu

NOVANEWS

by Eileen Fleming

On Wednesday, Israeli Attorney General Yehuda Weinstein announced the State would indict Haaretz journalist Uri Blau and charge him with unauthorized possession of classified documents.

Weinstein told reporters he would not accuse the journalist of traditional espionage in this case that involves classified documents that Blau received from then-IDF soldier Anat Kam, who is now serving a prison term of 4.5 years for passing on classified information.

The Israel SECURITY Agency/Shin Bet/Shabak, the State Prosecutor’s Office, and the Israel Police all sought the indictment.

In his statement, Weinstein claimed, “Blau blatantly broke the agreement he signed, allegedly lied to investigators and handed over only a small part of the stolen military information he received. The potential for damage in the unprotected possession of the documents was enormous.” [1]

Blau had recently returned to Israel in accordance with the agreement made with the Prosecutor’s Office and he maintains he turned over all the documents he received from Kam and others sources.

Blau has also agreed to undergo a lie detector test.
The State Prosecutor’s office stated it will indict Blau, because he “betrayed his duty – and later his commitment before the state – to cease possession of them.” [2] 

The Israeli Justice Department, said the decision was made “after taking into account all of the relevant considerations, including the need to restrain the enforcement policy in order to maintain the Israeli press as a free press which fulfills its duty.”[Ibid]

The duty of The Press is to seek and report the truth!

“All material published in Hebrew in Israel must be checked by military censors prior to publication and the military regularly obtains gag orders from the court system to prevent reporting of events, such as the Anat Kam affair.” [Ibid]

Senior Yedioth Ahronoth [where Kam had worked] journalist Yigal Serena stated that Weinstein’s decision “is part of the attempts to silence journalists in Israel. The problem isn’t that reporters have access to confidential materials. There is a long, ongoing decline in investigative journalism in Israel and this is another step in it. This didn’t come up out of nowhere. This is part of the long process of the collapse of free press. The AG just put another nail in the coffin.”

Kam’s conviction is Israel’s second highest profile case of whistle blowing followed by imprisonment, second only to Israel’s Nuclear Whistle Blower, Mordechai Vanunu.

Up until twenty-six years ago, Vanunu worked as a low-to-mid-level technician at the Dimona Nuclear Facility . In September 1986, he was kidnapped by the Mossad for telling the truth and providing the photographic proof to the London Sunday Times, which confirmed the existence of Israel’s much denied plutonium separation plant.

When Vanunu last set foot into Israel’s WMD facility, the plant was buried eighty feet below ground in the Negev desert. Ever since the 1960’s, the Dimona has been used to recover plutonium from spent fuel rods.

As the Prime Minister at the time, Shimon Peres, ordered Vanunu’ s kidnapping in a lame attempt to silence the truth and to bring Vanunu to trial for allegedly jeopardizing the SECURITY of the state of Israel. 

”But Vanunu’s real ‘crime’ was speaking the truth. And for that he was made to suffer a fate worse than death: eleven years and five months in solitary confinement. Isolation in a tiny cell is a well-known form of torture, and one that can cause deep emotional scars and mental impairment. During this period Vanunu was subjected to constant harassments and humiliations: an obvious attempt by the Mossad to break his will, or drive him over the edge. Amnesty International described the conditions of his ordeal as ‘cruel, inhuman, and degrading.’

“One of the causes for which Vanunu risked his life, full disclosure of Israel’s nuclear policies, was briefly realized in February 1999, when a debate of the nuclear issue occurred on the floor of the Israeli Knesset. The event was short-lived. After shouting and recriminations, several Arab members of the Knesset who had sparked the debate were expelled from the chamber…Over the years the case of Mordechai Vanunu has come to symbolize the intractable problem of state secrecy that continues to stymie all efforts toward world nuclear disarmament [and] The US press ignores his case because it is an embarrassment to Israel and to the US government.” [3]

Further Embarrassment:

In October 2011, the Tel Aviv District Court sentenced former Israel Defense Forces soldier Anat Kam to four-and-a-half years in prison for “collecting, holding and passing on classified information without authorization”.

Kam was convicted in February 2012, under a plea bargain admitting guilt to gathering and storing of over 2,000 classified military documents from the Central Command office [under Maj. Gen. Naveh] during her army service.

Kam passed on the documents to reporter Uri Blau whose investigative report in Haaretz Magazine exposed misconduct by the Israel Defense Forces/IDF.

“The report reveals that the IDF had approved well in advance the targeted killing of Malaisha [on June 20, 2007, during a routine military raid in the West Bank] contravening the High Court ruling and intentionally misleading the public. The report was attributed to ‘classified IDF documents’ and had been approved by the Military Censor before going to press.” [4]

Blau made use “of classified material from those documents as the basis for two newspaper articles. In the first, published in late October 2008, Blau accused the IDF of defying a High Court of Justice ruling against the targeted killings of Palestinian terrorists. The next article, published a few weeks later, similarly intimated that the IDF had earmarked Palestinian terrorists for targeted killings, and included a photocopy of a targeted-killing order Kam had given Blau.” [5]
In her own testimony, Kam described “Maj. Gen. Naveh’s office as ‘embarrassing in terms of information security’ and testified that she had not undergone any security check prior to being assigned to her army role, even though she had access to the most confidential documents.” [Ibid]

Vanunu embarrassed Israeli SECURITY when he managed to photograph top secret locations inside the Dimona because a supervisor carelessly left the keys to the restricted areas in the shower room.

Twenty-four years after the Mossad kidnapped Vanunu from Rome after luring him from London, they returned to track down another who followed his conscience but was labeled a traitor by a state who view truth tellers as a threat to their sense of security.

The prey that time was Uri Blau, who went into hiding after writing a series of reports exposing lawbreaking approved by Israeli army commanders.

Blau went underground to escape a potential lengthy jail term for espionage, for Israeli security services warned they would “remove the gloves” and track down the “fugitive felon.”

The military censor, who prevents publication of information that they deem could harm Israel’s national security, approved Blau’s story for publication in Haaretz .

Kam had originally been charged under Israel’s espionage and treason laws but the amended indictment dropped the charge of deliberately intending to harm state security, which carries a maximum penalty of life imprisonment.

The Israeli court initially gagged all news and details of Kam’s arrest but after a cyber storm of Internet reporting, the gag order was lifted.

Shortly after her arrest, Kam admitted to copying the documents while serving in the office in charge of operations in the West Bank, between 2005 and 2007.

Then 23 years old, Kam said she acted out of conscience to expose war crimes and she believed she would be forgiven for her honesty and integrity.

A prelude to the Kam affair began in July 2009, when Kam’s brothers in spirit from Breaking the Silence, an Israeli human rights group published 54 testimonies from Israeli soldiers regarding their experiences during Operation Cast Lead.

The testimonies exposed the gaps between the reports given by the army in January 2009 regarding the “accepted practices; the destruction of hundreds of houses and mosques for no military purpose, the firing of phosphorous gas in the direction of populated areas, the killing of innocent victims with small arms, the destruction of private property, and most of all, a permissive atmosphere in the command structure that enabled soldiers to act without moral restrictions.” [6]

On February 3, 2010, The Independent reported that a high-ranking officer who served as a commander during Operation Cast Lead, admitted that Israel’s army went beyond its previous rules of engagement on the protection of civilian lives and “that he did not regard the longstanding principle of military conduct known as ‘means and intentions’– whereby a targeted suspect must have a weapon and show signs of intending to use it before being fired upon – as being applicable before calling in fire from drones and helicopters in Gaza last winter.” [7]

The Déjà Vu:

Kam and Vanunu shared the same attorneys.

Kam was initially accused of treason and espionage.

Vanunu was convicted of both.

Kam and Vanunu both acted on moral and ideological grounds in a spirit of dissent from government policies of war and deceptions.

Kam spent two years under house arrest before going to jail.

Vanunu endured 18 years in a windowless tomb sized cell and on 21 April 2012, he began his 9th year under 24/7 surveillance by SECURITY who has denied his right to leave the state.

To this day, the Dimona nuclear plant remains uninspected by IAEA inspectors and Vanunu remains captive under “The restrictions, not to leave the country…The Israel stupid spies will not get any thing from here.” [8]

The mainstream media blackout over Vanunu’s historic freedom of speech trial and 78 days back in solitary confinement in 2010, just because he spoke to foreign media in 2004 continues, but it all has been well documented in

On June 6th, the Israeli Supreme Court is to at last address Vanunu’s request to revoke his citizenship in the hope he will be able to fade into the world instead of continuing to make headlines:

Vanunu Mordechai asking ,CANCEL,Revoking my Citizenship-MAY 5-2011.

On October 10, 2011, Vanunu wrote, “even if they will cancel my citizenship, it doesn’t mean they will send me free, they can still keep me here, but we believe this is the way out from Israel. If they will not cancel my Israel citizenship, then the court will decide to hear the case, and then the judges in the court hearing will decide if they will force the interior minister to follow his Israel laws, and cancel my citizenship. Any way they must let [me] go free after 25 years. VMJC.”

The Illegality of Israeli ‘Justice’ and MICROSOFT Connection

In 1986, after being clubbed, drugged, bound and kidnapped by the Mossad in Rome, Vanunu was transported back to Israel for a closed-door trial.

Vanunu was rendered defenseless when the court ruled that his motivations were not ideological and they refused to allow Vanunu’s own statements regarding his intentions to be considered in his defense.

In 1986, Nuclear Physicist, Frank Barnaby was employed by the London Sunday Times to interrogate Vanunu and review the 57 photos he had obtained at various restricted/top secret locations in the Dimona.

Barnaby spent three days with Vanunu in London before his abduction by the Mossad.

Barnaby attended Vanunu’s closed-door trial and called by the defense to give expert testimony, Barnaby testified:

“I found the fact that Vanunu was able to smuggle a camera and films into and out of Dimona and photograph highly sensitive areas in the establishment astonishing…I very vigorously cross-examined Vanunu, relentlessly asking the same questions in a number of different ways and at different times…I found Vanunu very straightforward.

“After questioning him about his motives for violating Israel’s secrecy laws he explained to me that he believed that both the Israeli and the world public had the right to know about the information he passed on. He seemed to me to be acting ideologically. Israel’s political leaders have, he said, consistently lied about Israel’s nuclear-weapons programme and he found this unacceptable in a democracy.

“The knowledge that Vanunu had about Isreal’s nuclear weapons, about the operations at Dimona, and about security at Dimona could not be of any use to anyone today. He left Dimona in October 1985 and the design of today’s Israeli nuclear weapons will have been considerably changed since then…Modern nuclear weapons bear little relationship to those of the mid-1980.” [9]

Blau has escaped the charge of espionage, but Vanunu was convicted of it.

In exchange for a promise protecting both him and his source from investigation, Blau returned 50 documents but authorities continue to claim he held hundreds more classified documents.

While on holiday in 2009, a friend had warned Blau that the Shin Bet had broken into his home and ransacked it. Blau later learned that the Israeli secret police had been monitoring his telephone, e-mail and computer for months.

On February 22, 2006, it was revealed in court that Israel had asked Microsoft to hand over all the details of Vanunu’s Hotmail account before a court order had been obtained.
 
Vanunu wrote, “Microsoft obeyed the orders and gave them all the details…three months before I was arrested and my computers were confiscated…it is strange to ask Microsoft to give this information before obtaining the court order to listen to my private conversations. It means they wanted to go through my emails in secret, or maybe, with the help of the secret services, the Shaback, Mossad.

“Sfard [Vanunu’s attorney] proved that the police had misled the judges who gave the orders to arrest me: to search my room, to go through my email, to confiscate my computers and that they misled Microsoft to believe they are helping in a case of espionage.

“The State came to the court with two special secret Government orders; Hisaion [documents or information that are deemed confidential by the government and kept from the court, the defendant, and lawyers.] This allows the prosecution to keep documents related to my court hearing secret. One was from the Minister for Interior Security and one from the Minister of Defense.” [10]

Vanunu’s secretly taped police interrogations, his 2004 Christmas Eve arrest for “attempting to leave the country” when he attempted to celebrate mass at the Church of the Nativity in Bethlehem, the confiscation of his private property by thirty IDF that stormed into his room at St. George’s Cathedral in 2004, Vanunu wrote had all “been done under the false and misleading statements to the courts of ‘suspicion of espionage’, and yet they are not charging me with spy crimes…and the fact is that I have not committed any crimes.”[Ibid]

Legally Speaking:

Article 9 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights upholds that “No one shall be subjected to arbitrary arrest or detention”, including abduction of a person by agents of one state to another state.

Section 99 of the Israeli Penal Code, treason is defined as “an act calculated to assist (an enemy) in time of war…delivering information with the intention that it fall into the hands of the enemy.”

Section 113 defines aggravated espionage as “deliver(ing) any secret information without being authorized to do so and with intent to impair the security of the state” and a sub-clause provides for a penalty of seven years for the unauthorized collection, preparation, recording or holding of secret information; if this is done with intent to impair the security of the state and then, the penalty is increased to 15 years.

Eitan Lehman, Kam’s lawyer stated, “We have a dangerous precedent here, whereby the handing over of material to an Israeli newspaper is seen by the prosecutor’s office as equivalent to contact with a foreign agent. The very notion of presenting information to the Israeli public alone is taken as an intention to hurt national security.”

After Kamm’s sentencing the state prosecutor Hadas Porrer-Gefni, told reporters the panel of three judges had given a “strong message” to young people on mandatory army service and that young people should be made aware of Kam’s sentence before embarking on their mandatory IDF service.

“The judgment should be learned in every school and every basic training unit in the army, so that anyone who thinks he can take classified documents knows what punishment he will get.”

Blau published stories based on documents provided by Kam.

The documents exposed how the army command approved policies that broke international law and violated the rulings of Israel’s courts.

Blau’s reports revealed that senior commanders approved extra-judicial assassinations in the occupied territories that were almost certain to kill Palestinian bystanders and the army issued orders to execute wanted Palestinians even if they could be safely captured in violation of a commitment to the high court.

Blau also exposed that the defense ministry compiled a secret report showing that the great majority of settlements in the West Bank were illegal even under Israeli law.

B’Tselem, an Israeli human rights group, said its research had shown that “in many cases soldiers have been conducting themselves in the territories as if they were on a hit mission, as opposed to arrest operations.”

The crimes of the state are blatant but it is the truth tellers who go to jail.

Journalists should be a thorn in the side of Governments and Institutions and healthy democracies can only thrive on dissent and a FREE PRESS!

In Israel, the SECURITY forces, IDF and Justice system have colluded to make freedom of conscience and freedom of the press “just another word for nothin’ left to lose and nothin’ ain’t worth nothin’ but it’s FREE.”

May the day come soon when whistle blowers and reporters who act on conscience for the greater good, be good enough for all and a democracy in name is democracy indeed.

I do believe that day will and must come, because NO Government has any RIGHT to gag, censor or criminalize FREEDOM of Conscience, Speech or the Press; and it has been enshrined in the UN UNIVERSAL DECLARATION of HUMAN RIGHTS -upon which the Establishment of Israel’s statehood was contingent upon upholding:

Everyone has the right to freedom of opinion and expression; this right includes freedom to hold opinions without interference and to seek, receive and impart information and ideas through any media and regardless of frontiers.

Read more…

But “If I can’t dance it’s not my revolution.” [Emma Goldman] this reporter and candidate of conscience for US HOUSE ends with music:

JANIS JOPLIN Me and Bobby McGee (1969)

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Russian Journalist Exposes Propaganda Lies About Houla Massacre

NOVANEWS

Russian Journalist Exposes Propaganda Lies about Houla Massacre

by Stephen Lendman

Going to war depends first on selling it. Gaining public support is vital. Previous articles discussed it. Walter Lippmann coined the phrase “manufacture of consent.”  Edward Herman and Noam Chomsky discussed the “propaganda model” in their book titled “Manufacturing Consent: The Political Economy of the Mass Media.” 

Media scoundrels use it to manipulate and control public thinking and perceptions. News and information are filtered. Acceptable “residue” only is reported.  Dissent is marginalized. Government and dominant private interests are prioritized. Michael Parenti explained:

“The enormous gap between what US leader do….and what American’s think their leaders are doing is one of the great propaganda accomplishments….”

In their book titled “Propaganda and Persuasion,” Garth Jowett and Victoria O’Donnell defined their topic as “the deliberate, systematic attempt to shape perceptions, manipulate cognitions, and direct behavior to achieve a response that furthers the desired intent of the propagandist.”

Richard Alan Nelson described the technique as follows:

“Propaganda is neutrally defined as a systematic form of purposeful persuasion that attempts to influence the emotions, attitudes, opinions, and actions of specified target audiences for ideological, political or commercial purposes through the controlled transmission of one-sided messages (which may or may not be factual) via mass and direct media channels.”

“A propaganda organization employs propagandists who engage in propagandism—the applied creation and distribution of such forms of persuasion.”

Propaganda has different forms. Advertisers use it to generate sales. So do politicians to get elected. Religious leaders use it to indoctrinate the faithful. So do nations to promote their agendas.   When war is planned, it’s used to create fear, demonize enemies, dehumanize them, falsely accuse them of atrocities and other crimes, and enlist public support for intervention for alleged humanitarian reasons.

In 1917, George Creel first used propaganda successfully to turn pacifist Americans into raging German-haters.  In his 1928 book titled “Propaganda,” Edward Bernays said it’s possible to “regiment the public mind every bit as much as an army regiments their bodies.” “If we understand the mechanism and motives of the group mind, is it not possible to control and regiment the masses according to our will without their knowing about it?”

In his book titled “Taking the Risk Out of Democracy: Corporate Propaganda versus Freedom and Liberty,” Alex Carey said:

“The twentieth century has been characterized by three developments of great political importance: the growth of democracy, the growth of corporate power, and the growth of corporate propaganda as a means of protecting corporate power against democracy.”

It’s also used to launch wars, trick enemies for strategic purposes, and deceive the public while waging them. Media scoundrels play a crucial role. People are manipulated to think aggressive wars are just ones.  Big lies launch them. None achieve peace, security and stability. One conflict begets others. Endless destructive cycles follow. Countless millions die. Vast destruction ravages countries. Human misery, not liberation, results.  Human needs go unmet. Wealth, power, and imperial interests only matter. Successful propaganda convinces people that what harms their well-being actually helps them.  Post-9/11, America waged multiple direct and proxy wars. They continue without end. Obama itches for more. Syria is target one, then Iran, then other nations for unchallenged US dominance. At issue is can humanity survive?

On June 11, Global Research published Russian journalist Marat Musin‘s firsthand observations of what really happened at Houla. He exposed media scoundrel misinformation and lies. Doing so provided a vital service.  Western-enlisted death squads bear full responsibility. Government forces and/or so-called pro-Assad shabbiha had no involvement.

Scoundrel media and Western officials provided fabricated accounts of what went on. It was classic, duplicitous propaganda. It rages to enlist public support for war.  Musin’s article is powerful reading. Circulating it widely is important. Only public rage can stop wars. Nothing else works. Knowing the truth and spreading it has impact. Imperial America and war profiteers fear that most.  It’s time ordinary people got radicalized for their own well-being. Focus first on ending imperial wars. Imagine what’s possible at peace. Imagine public needs prioritized over conquests and domination. If that’s not worth fighting for, what is?

Below is a snapshot of what Musin wrote. Read his article for the full account.

On May 25, Houla was attacked by hundreds of “bandits and mercenaries.”  Ar-Rastan-based and Free Syrian Army terrorists were responsible.  Civilians abandoned the town of Ar-Rastan. Lebanese Wahhabi/Salafist extremists dominate the area. With foreign money and weapons, they carry out terrorist attacks.  When killer gangs entered “the lower checkpoint in the center of” Houla, they attacked pro-government residents. “Many of those killed were ‘guilty’ of….dar(ing) to change from Sunnis to Shiites.” They were murdered in cold blood “with knives (or) shot at point blank range.”

Scandalous accounts blamed Assad. Government forces and/or supporters had nothing to do with it.  Musin called UN observers claiming they heard artillery fire “a bad joke.” Assad’s forces were in Homs, 50 kilometers away. “After a visual inspection of (Houla), it is impossible to find traces of any of fresh destruction, bombing and shelling….Militants used heavy weapons and snipers…”

Official and scoundrel media reports wreak of inconsistencies and duplicity.

“Militants opened fire on virtually everyone who tries to get closer to (Houla). Before us a UN convoy was fired upon and two armored jeeps of the UN observers were damaged, when they tried to drive up to an army checkpoint in Tal Dow.”

“….(M)any of the militants are professional snipers.”

“….(B)andits even fired an automatic burst on our group of journalists….”

About 108 civilians were killed, including 38 or more young children. They were executed in cold blood. They were pro-government loyalists.  Musin discussed media disinformation, saying:

“To exert pressure on public opinion and change the positions of Russia and China, texts and subtitles in Russian and Chinese languages were prepared in advance, reading:

‘Syria – Homs – the city of Hula. A terrible massacre perpetrated by the armed forces of the Syrian regime against civilians in the town of Houla. Dozens of victims and their number is growing, mainly women and children, brutally killed by indiscriminate bombing of the CITY.’ “  “Two days later, on May 27, after the residents’ stories and video recordings made showed that the facts do not support the allegation of shelling and bombing, the bandits’ videos had undergone significant changes.”

“At the end of the text appeared this postscript: ‘And some were killed with knives.’ “  Musin reported what everyone needs to know and tell others. Pentagon war plans were ready months ago. Obama itches to attack Syria. Perhaps Houla or another planned incident will trigger it.

On Friday, Syria’s Human Rights Council representative, Faisal al-Hamwi, blamed Houla killings on terror gangs. They’re trying to incite sedition, he said.  “No sane person can believe some of this session’s sponsors when they show sorrow and pain for the victims at the time when they participate in killing the Syrians and shedding their blood,” he added.  On June 1, the Human Rights Council met to discuss Syria. Washington pressure assured its conclusions in advance.

United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, Navi Pillay, blamed Assad for killer gang crimes. She wrongly said the “Syrian military allegedly unleashed a barrage of heavy weapons on” Houla, “including artillery and tank fire….” She also blamed “pro-government Shabiha paramilitary groups….”

Doing so ignored clear evidence of responsibility. She wants government officials prosecuted at the International Criminal Court. Western and complicit regional states’ accountability wasn’t mentioned.

On June 2, the State Department claimed satellite images show Houla mass graves. Assad was named responsible. Alleged nearby artillery craters were also shown.   So-called images can be easily manipulated and/or fabricated. They can also be from other areas unrelated to Houla or Syria. State Department claims are spurious and unverified. So are scoundrel media reports about them.  On Friday, Russian Foreign Ministry spokesman Alexander Lukashevich said preliminary government investigations showed a well-planned operation carried out by gunmen intent on violence, not a diplomatic solution to Syria’s conflict.

He blamed weapons and funding supplied foreign mercenaries.  Houla killings advanced the ball closer to war. Launching it could happen anytime, with or without Security Council authorization.  Doing so will ignite a regional firestorm. Imagine the potential catastrophic consequences. Future updates will cover more.

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Support These Troops and Remember The War on LIBERTY

NOVANEWS

By Eileen Fleming

As a candidate of conscience for US HOUSE of Representatives, I have NO doubt that what this Government and Israel want is for the LIBERTY VETS to die out before JUSTICE: meaning accountability is done for the troops who had been aboard the USS LIBERTY during The Six Day War, when US Policy took a sharp turn to the ‘right’ because ‘Christian’ Zionism had infiltrated the White House.

IF I am elected, among my first acts of Congress will be to call for a new and transparent Court of Inquiry, invite the USS Liberty survivors to speak on the Congressional Record about what they saw on that day in infamy and establish every June 8th as USS LIBERTY REMEMBRANCE DAY.

“The attack was the easy part; the aftermath in not being able to get our government to address this cover up has been the bastard.”-Gary Brummett, USS LIBERTY survivor.

Jeff Gates is an author, educator, attorney and adviser on financial policy who served seven years as counsel to the U.S. Committee on Finance. In “GUILT BY ASSOCIATION: How DECEPTION and SELF-DECEIT Took America to WAR”  he exposes the ‘passionate attachment’ of LBJ and Mathilde Krim, who was twenty years his junior, blonde Italian and a Irgun operative.

The Irgun were the Zionist terrorist network led by Menachem Begin who emerged as Likud Party Prime Minister in 1977.

With and without her husband, Mathilde Krim was a frequent guest at the LBJ Ranch as well as the White House.

In The U.S.-Israeli Train Wreck, Jeff Gates wrote: “On the night that the Six-Day Land Grab began, Mathilde was enjoying a sleepover in the Johnson White House. But for that Zionist aggression, would Israel have been able to live peacefully with its neighbors? Israel and its supporters staged an elaborate charade to recast this provocation as defensive. That ruse included the cover-up of an Israeli assault on the U.S.S. Liberty that killed 34 Americans and left 175 wounded.”

On a typically steamy evening in Florida in May 2010, this reporter attended a talk sponsored by a Tampa United Church of Christ to spend an evening with Ernest A. Gallo, Chairman and Liberty Foundation President of the USS liberty Veterans Association. Ernie began with a warning:

“My intent is to tell you the truth and if I do a good job, you will leave here tonight with heart burn.

“Some of the Liberty survivors think the Lord wants us to tell this story.  My focus is on our government, who abandoned the crew when Israel targeted the USS Liberty and murdered 34 servicemen and injured 174 on June 8, 1967. Ever since, we have been chastised and dishonored by our government.”

The fire in the belly of Congressman Paul Findley, a moderate Republican was ignited decades ago. On 8 June 2007, I attended the 27th annual American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee’s Washington, D.C. Conference and heard him say:

“I was here for the first convention 27 years ago and I still have a fire in my belly for the civil and human rights of Arabs. It is time to speak openly and honestly about Israel. But, in American politics, that is still forbidden.

“Pity that we cannot seem to shed our fear of Israel! We are afraid to speak out on Capitol Hill, for fear of losing the next election. They are more like trained poodles jumping through hoops than leaders!

“Why this fear? How did we get here?

“Forty years ago to this day, June 8, 1967 the change occurred, the floodgates opened and money poured into Israel as never before. When President Johnson heard about the U.S.S. Liberty being attacked by Israel he ordered the rescue fighter planes to return to the deck. The rescue mission was aborted and the survivors have said they heard LBJ’s voice tell Admiral Giess, ‘Get those planes back on deck. I don’t care if the ship sinks, I will not embarrass Israel.’

“LBJ also threatened to court martial anyone who reported what had happened. Johnson accepted Israel’s false claim of “mistaken identity” and he knew it was a lie.  That is when the change began and Israel learned they could get away with murdering U.S.A. soldiers.”

The attack on the USS Liberty remains “the only incident of damage to a major US ship since the sinking of the USS MAINE in Havana Harbour in 1898, prior to the Spanish-American War, that has not been investigated by the US Congress.” [1]

The fire in my belly for the USS Liberty crew was ignited on 13 October 2007, when I met my first USS Liberty survivor, Petty Officer Phil Tourney who spoke at a conference in California, and said: “It was God that kept us afloat.”

I knew I had to do more than just listen to him.

Phil connected me to a few of the Liberty veterans and on 2 November 2007, I spoke on the phone with Ernie Gallo for the first time.

In 1967, Ernie was a Petty Officer and Communication Technician aboard the USS Liberty and was now living in Florida. We shared our frustrations in seeking justice for the Liberty vets while dealing with our congressional representatives.
Ernie quipped, “I met with Senator Martinez’s legal council and let me tell you that Congress will not lift a finger to help us. AIPAC would crucify them! Our government is lock stepped not to say anything about the LIBERTY.”

On 29 October 2007, as a concerned citizen, I attended a Leesburg Area Chamber of Commerce luncheon and Town Hall Q+A with the former Republican Senator from Florida, Mel Martinez, who had accepted $10,000 from Pro-Israel PAC Funds for the 2005-2006-election cycle.

After fielding softball questions and basking in the praises of the Republicans in the audience, the Senator finally picked on me to speak.

I rose up and stated:

“I thank God for this opportunity to speak to you Senator Martinez, for I have been to your D.C. office twice this year. I spoke with your assistant John Goetchius both times regarding the Christian EXODUS from the Holy Land which has reduced our sisters and brothers in Christ’s numbers from 20% to less than 1.3% since 1948 in the land where Jesus promised the Peacemakers are the children of God. I have been to Israel Palestine five times since June 2005 [seven as of this writing] to bear witness and report on this Christian crisis!

“I also thank God for this opportunity to raise awareness of my FAX of October 21 to you requesting JUSTICE for the survivors of the USS LIBERTY.”

I then turned to the audience but kept my eyes transfixed upon the slack jawed media that were filming the event:

“In case you don’t know, the USS LIBERTY, was an unarmed spy ship sailing in international waters flying the American flag, on June 8, 1967, when it was attacked by Israel. Thirty-four American sailors were killed, 174 wounded and all the survivors have been scarred, traumatized and let down by the American Government who ordered them to shut up or be court-martialed or worse if they spoke out!

“All the Veterans of the USS LIBERTY have been asking for is an open independent investigation with Congressional oversight and a declassification of all records.”

I then turned to the politician and inquired, “Will you Senator Martinez take the lead and deliver JUSTICE by seeking the TRUTH for the veterans of the USS LIBERTY before this Veterans Day?”

With a slick smile, Senator Martinez retorted, “Veterans Day is next week.”

Martinez thanked me for my passion and then claimed it is Hezbollah that is the cause of the Christian EXODUS from the Holy Land. Not being one who will be silenced in the face of ignorance or hypocrisy, I interrupted him, “It is the forty years of military occupation that is the cause of the problem! It is Hamas and Fatah in Palestine, not Hezbollah! But what about the LIBERTY?”

Senator Martinez kept his professional cool and replied, “I hear you.”

He then turned away and called on a supporter in the audience to rescue him from the fire in my belly that had erupted out of my mouth.

On 6 July 2009, I finally received a letter from Senator Bill Nelson after many attempts to reach him regarding the USS Liberty veterans ongoing request for an open congressional investigation of that day in infamy when our government crucified the truth and gagged the survivors.

Assuming I was an idiot, in the third paragraph of Senator Bill Nelson’s letter to me he wrote:

“There have been numerous investigations of the USS liberty case by both the executive and legislative branches of the government. Immediately following the incident, the U.S. Navy and Deportment of Defense conducted their own separate investigations of the incident. In its oversight role, Congress also investigated…both the House Armed Services Committee and the House Investigations Subcommittee of the Appropriations Committee conducted separate investigations, which were completed to the satisfaction of the Congress.”

The Liberty veterans still can get no satisfaction!

And it was not until 1979, that the LIBERTY vets began to defy the gag order the American Government had put them under.

That break through happened with the publication of USS Liberty survivor, James M. Ennes, Jr.’s book,ASSAULT ON THE LIBERTY: The True Story of the Israeli Attack on an American intelligence Ship.

That book reunited the USS Liberty crew and led to the founding of the non-profit Liberty Veterans Association. The servicemen began petitioning Congress for an open independent panel to investigate the horrific and unprovoked attack upon them. But, these servicemen have only received pro-forma letters from White House staffers claiming that the attack had already been investigated.

On 2 October 2007, the Chicago Tribune reported:

“The declassification of government documents and the recollections of former military personnel… showed [that] the Israelis knew they were attacking an American naval vessel. The documents also suggest that the U.S. government, anxious to spare Israel’s reputation and preserve its alliance with the U.S., closed the case with what even some of its participants now say was a hasty and seriously flawed investigation.” [2]

J.Q. ‘Tony’ Hart, then a chief petty officer assigned to a U.S. Navy relay station in Morocco that handled communications between Washington and the 6th Fleet, remembered listening as Defense Secretary Robert McNamara, in Washington, ordered Rear Adm. Lawrence Geis, commander of the America’s carrier battle group, to bring the jets home.

When Geis protested that the Liberty was under attack and needed help, Hart said, McNamara retorted,“President [Lyndon] Johnson is not going to go to war or embarrass an American ally over a few sailors.”

“The Johnson administration did not publicly dispute Israel’s claim that the attack had been nothing more than a disastrous mistake. But internal White House documents obtained from the Lyndon B. Johnson Presidential Library show that the Israelis’ explanation of how the mistake had occurred was not believed. Except for McNamara, most senior administration officials from Secretary of State Dean Rusk on down privately agreed with Johnson’s intelligence adviser, Clark Clifford, who was quoted in minutes of a National Security Council staff meeting as saying it was ‘inconceivable’ that the attack had been a case of mistaken identity. The attack ‘couldn’t be anything else but deliberate’ the NSA’s director, Lt. Gen. Marshall Carter, later told Congress.”

 Ernie Gallo had been above the water line when the torpedo hit the USS Liberty and he informed me:

 ”It was a beautiful clear sunny day and all morning Israeli reconnaissance planes were flying over us, I counted twelve over flights and one came so close I could see the pilots face; we waved and he dipped his wing as he went by. We were all very comfortable because they were our allies. That morning Captain McGonagle called a general quarter’s drill. That’s a created special kind of emergency –I can’t remember what the mock drill was about-but it was to test our skills and the Captain was well pleased. Because we were in dangerous ground he kept the gunners manning the machine guns-two guys on each ‘nest’ –this was unusual for them to stay in flack jackets and heavy helmets after the drill, but we knew we were in hostile territories. But we were all comfortable; guys were sunbathing and we were all happy because we saw our friends, the Israelis in the sky. We were all so very relaxed because of their over flights; it was like a scene out of McCales Navy.

“It was about an hour and a half after lunch when the unmarked planes attacked us and they knew exactly where to hit: the communication antennas! They knew the machine guns weren’t a threat, those pilots were very careful to take out the antennas. Then they dropped two napalm bombs on us, miraculously the fires all stayed on the outside, and even though the fire hoses were bullet ridden, like a garden hose and every CO2 canister on board was used, that fire easily could have gone inside the ship, but the firefighters kept their cool and it didn’t. A Signalman constantly watched that our flag was raised, the first one burnt up in the fire but in a few minutes he raised the holiday flag and our ship was well marked with USS LIBERTY on it.

“It wasn’t until the torpedo boats came at us that the Star of David could be seen again. But the Israelis claim mistaken identity, they mistook us for the El-Quseir an Egyptian transport ship that only carried horses [and is also a third of the size of the USS LIBERTY] and had been tied up and out of use for a year. The LIBERTY had at least forty antennas- yet Israel claims they made a mistake in identifying us-if this were ever heard in a Court of Law; it would be beyond belief!

“I was a ‘spook’ an interceptor, a CT; Communication Technician. Back then; the NSA had security groups in all the branches of Military Service. Normal operations were that for four months at a time, up and down the African Coast, anything within the ambient atmosphere; the airwaves were monitored. The CT’s had a multitude of talents; Administrators, Linguists, Morse Code Operators, Communicators and Electronics specialists-that’s what I did-kept all the equipment working.

“We all worked behind closed locked doors; none of the rest of the crew ever knew what we were doing. Our whole purpose in life was to intercept messages; RF, UHF, VHF, long and short wave. There were two gigantic Christmas tree antennas on the LIBERTY. Mid-ship there was a pedestal; with a sixteen foot dish pointed sky wards. How they could mistake us for a horse carrying ship is beyond belief.

“You know that when the North Koreans attacked the Pueblo, they wanted to capture it? The North Koreans gave repeated opportunities to surrender. The Israelis never gave us one! Any of the Israeli torpedo boats could have approached and asked us to surrender or follow them, but that never occurred.

“The LIBERTY was built in 1944, it was a converted cargo ship and the mechanics of that ship should have broken up and sunk! One foot more or less from where that torpedo hit and we would have sunk! But that torpedo hit a brace; and that brace absorbed the energy and kept us from blowing up! I honestly believe the Lord saved the LIBERTY for a reason and for this time in the world.”

In 1967, John Hrankowski, was a nineteen year old on his third cruise on the USS Liberty. In a 2007 telephone conversation he told me:

“I worked in the engineering department, responsible for the air conditioning, electricity, water and steam. I was topside when out of nowhere the blasting of shrapnel knocked me down. I returned to my general quarters space in the boiler room when the call came, ‘this is not a drill; we are under attack.’

“Fifteen feet in front of me the torpedo hit and knocked the ship out of the water! If that torpedo had hit the boiler the steam pressure of 750 degrees mixed with cold water would have been like an atomic bomb exploding!

“The lights went out, the generator was knocked out, shrapnel flew around me like fire flies; it was dangerous but somehow beautiful. I worked with a lantern to keep the steam under control. If that boiler blew the ship would have blown up too!”

Another Liberty survivor who had been below the water line when the torpedo hit was Ron Kukal, who became the Chaplain for the USS LIBERTY Vets Association. In an email from 22 October 2007, Ron wrote:

“On June 8, 1967 during the Vietnam War, I was aboard a Navy vessel called the USS LIBERTY. This unarmed ship was sailing the waters off the coast of Israel during the Six Day War.

“It may be possible that the only reason God saved the LIBERTY was so that we could tell our story.

“The ship was sailing 15 miles off the coast in international waters when the Israeli Defense Force attacked her. She was subjected to torpedoes, 50 caliber machine gun fire, napalm, and rocket fire. There was over 800 holes in the LIBERTY after the attack, she was listing about 10 degrees to the starboard, and was on fire in many places. Thirty-four men were killed and close to 70% of the crew were wounded, of which I was one.

“For what seemed like an eternity… many miracles occurred during, and after the attack. The only armament we had were 50 caliber machine guns, and they were like peashooters against the French built Mirage jets that attacked the LIBERTY…we were not ready for any kind of attack whatsoever. The element of surprise was theirs.

“I survived the attack by the planes, but the worst was yet to come, as five torpedo boats were bearing down on us, with one thing in mind, and that was to put us to the bottom! Only one found its mark. This was the second miracle that I was exposed to that day, the first being the surviving of the onslaught by the jet aircraft.

“The torpedo hit the Liberty almost amidships on the starboard side, and I was approximately thirty feet from the explosion. There were a couple of bulkheads between the explosion, and myself but they were like paper to the several tons of TNT that tore up the bowels of the Liberty. What had been several compartments were turned into one big room in a very short time. I was immediately immersed in sea water, and it was rising fast to the point where it would be above my head in a short time, and even though I could swim, the compartment would soon become completely full, and there would be no place to go. The hatch to the above deck was closed, and dogged down, and so my life again depended completely on what God would do. Just before the compartment became fully flooded the hatch above me was opened to let as many of us as possible out of there before we became a part of a watery grave. This was the third miracle that I saw that day, but there was even more to come. I ran to get to the main deck; I was slipping and sliding because of the water, and blood was awash within each passageway.

“The fourth miracle occurred when I was exposed to the machine gun fire on the main deck, and still remained alive, and still there was more to come. Every antenna we had was shot to pieces except one, and it had never worked very well. One of the radiomen told me that he tried several times to call for help, and finally when he realized that all the antenna were shot, he switched to the one that had always given him trouble, and when it was needed, it worked! We were able to call the Sixth Fleet, and notify them of our predicament through an antenna that had hardly ever worked. The fifth miracle had just occurred.

“The attack had gone on for two hours, or more, but it seemed like only a few minutes. The captain told us that we had lost our steering control, and that we would have to go aft, and steer the ship manually. We were able to make headway, and in time were headed for the island of Malta, and to dry dock. This was almost one thousand miles away, and here we were with a ship that had a forty by forty-foot hole in her side, on fire, and riddled with holes.

“The Liberty could go down at any minute, but we did sail the thousand miles without incident, and this had to be the sixth miracle of the day. I was one of the crew that went down below to identify the deceased and I know that God gave me the strength to go and do what was expected of me. Let it suffice to say that, under the conditions, only men that were strengthened, and held up by God himself would be able to enter the dark area down below.”

On 8 June 1967, Gary Brummett was a twenty-year-old Third Class Petty Officer assigned to the Boiler Room aboard the LIBERTY. In 2007, he told me:

“After more than two hours of unremitting assault, the Israelis finally halted their attack. One of the torpedo boats approached the Liberty. This same torpedo boat crew had been circling the ship, machine-gunning anyone who stuck his head above decks, as well as the lifeboats the crew had put over the side. A torpedo boat officer asked in English over a bullhorn: ‘Do you need any help?’

“The wounded commander of the Liberty, Captain William McGonagle, instructed the quartermaster to respond emphatically: ‘Fuck you.’” [3]

Brummett had been on the bottom most level all during the attack and he informed me:

“For thirty-five years I kept this devil bottled up. I felt like I had it under control, but it all became so real again, after I retired from the Post Office and joined the Board of the LIBERTY Vet’s Association. I was the Vice President for two years and President and three years.

“The attack was the easy part; the aftermath in not being able to get our government to address this cover up has been the bastard. I’ve had forty years thinking about this crap and all the presidents and Congressmen and Senators since LBJ are guilty for not addressing this issue that has been set before them. The few congressional representatives who have tried to address this have been silenced by the Israel Lobby, AIPAC and the JDL.

“The apologists for Israel like A.J. Cristol in his book of half truths and errors claimed there have been investigations. In checking the Congressional Record you will see the only investigation was the original Naval Court of Inquiry. The Liberty Veterans Association has offered $10,000 reward to anyone who can prove there were a Congressional investigation and so far, no takers!

“The Naval Court of Inquiry was done by two officers under the command of Admiral John McCain, Sr. and it was concluded in six days! After Admiral Kidd delivered it to Washington, parts of it were altered, stuff was excised out, and it was falsified with intent!

“When the attack occurred, I was in the engineering spaces, and we called it the Dungeon. I was there, twelve to fifteen feet below the water line when the torpedo hit and I remember it as vividly now as when it happened. My back was to the boiler heater, I was looking at the starboard [right] bulkhead [wall] when the torpedo hit. I was beyond fear of death, but that feeling didn’t last too long. The torpedo hit about fifteen feet forward of the space I was in. It felt like it lifted the LIBERTY out of the water and we rolled to port [left] side and I thought we would capsize.

“The hole measured twenty-two by thirty-nine feet and it was like the destruction of a three story building. The entire space flooded in a matter of moments and it was a nightmare scenario.

“The day before, I and another third class boiler tech, J.P. Newell, had worked for over twenty-two hours and been awake for over thirty because of the boilers. If the water gets too low in a boiler it will over heat and rupture. Everything on that ship ran on steam power; the electricity, the fire hoses, cooking, laundry, commodes and the turbines that turned the shaft and moved the ship!

“We had been working on the Coffin Pump, an auxiliary feed pump that supplies water to the boilers. It’s a good thing we did get it fixed, because during the attack we needed that Coffin Pump because both main feed pumps seized on us about half way through the seventy-five minute attack.

“I had gotten burnt from the super heated water in the early morning on the day of the attack and after going to sickbay J.P. and I had coffee on the mess deck. J.P. then went back to finish the work on the Coffin Pump and I took a shower and went to sleep until 10 AM and then I went back to the Dungeon.

“On the PA System I could hear the Officer of the Deck call five or six times for the duty photographer team to go up to the bridge between ten and one that day. Ten to twenty minutes after a routine general quarters drill the attack started, about 2 PM. I smelled gunpowder and things got hot and heavy and more furious from that point on.

“We were trained incessantly like Pavlov’s dogs; so, you don’t think you just react. That torpedo hit the engineering spaces that were all ready dark because the turbo generators had been knocked off line. The missiles had destroyed our back up emergency generators and the only light available was hand battle lanterns.

“Israel said they stopped attacking us after the torpedo hit, but that’s a big lie! I think they stopped shooting at us because they ran out of ammunition!

“When we got to Malta, I was one of five two men teams that counted the direct hits and while the official record states 821 direct hits plus the torpedo there were thousands of rounds of ammo that hit us and no way could they all be counted!

“It wasn’t until June 9th just after midnight that I went to the mess deck and saw bodies all over the place; on the floor, the tables and blood was everywhere. Men were crying for their mother’s! It was an emotional mix master, unreal, surreal. I was a twenty-year-old kid and not the sharpest knife in the drawer, but I even knew something was very wrong with what had happened to us.

“The dead had been in storage lockers for a few days before we even had time to move them into the freezers. Out of a crew of 294, 34 were killed, over 170 injured so that didn’t leave many of us to do everything.

“When we got to Malta two Navy Officers informed my group of about a dozen crewmen that National Security was involved and we were all ordered not to talk, ordered to keep our mouths shut, no talking to reporters, no details to family.

“The closest safe harbor was Crete, a day an a half away, but we were sent to Malta, a six day trip with bulkheads so contorted we could have sunk in waters that went down 17,000 feet! We still don’t have submersibles that go that deep!

“I think they sent us to Malta so that D.C. could have four more days to get their story straight and they hoped we would all sink!

“I was baptized a Christian when I was thirty-eight years old and while I believe it was God that kept the LIBERTY afloat I also think that my life was spared for another purpose and reason and LIBERTY means FREEDOM!”

When Gary said that, I immediately recalled the words President George W. Bush promised in his Second Inaugural Address:

“In the long run, there is no JUSTICE without FREEDOM. There can be no human rights without LIBERTY. All who live in tyranny and hopelessness can know the United States will not ignore your oppression or excuse your oppressors. When you stand for LIBERTY, we stand with you.”

On 8 June 1967, Lieutenant Richard Kiepfer, was the lone medical doctor on board the spy ship, the USS LIBERTY, who “with complete disregard for his own personal safety, exposed himself to overwhelmingly accurate rocket and machine gun fire…administered first aid…treated [171 wounded] men for pain, shock…[and] conducted a major surgical operation.” [4]

Six weeks after boarding the LIBERTY and fifteen minutes into the attack, while operating on a sailor to control his bleeding, Dr. Kiepfer received eleven shrapnel wounds into his abdomen, and shortly thereafter, a gun shot to his leg, burns and a broken kneecap. He remained on his feet and caring for the crew for the next twenty-eight hours and their spirits ever since.

In 2007, I visited with the then 70 year old Dr. Richard F. Kiepfer, a Catholic born and bred in Brooklyn, in his Texas home where the deer ignore the corn put out by his neighbors, for Dr. Kiepfer provided prime feed in his front yard. Obese raccoons dined on a daily feast of dog food and the neighborhood cats eat better than mine, in his back yard. Friends checked on the doctor daily and set the food out, for Dr. Kiepfer could no longer do what he once did.
A Master Bridge player while still in his teens, Dr. Kiepfer continued to play the cards he has been dealt in life with aplomb and grace.

In 1973 he nearly died in a plane crash after parachuting atop of Georgia pecan trees that ended his surgical career and the use of his right hand and arm. The other night in Tampa, Ernie told me that Doc Kiepfer has now lost his right arm.

Doc told me, “The pilot landed a mile away from me, and was impaled on a forest of pine trees. As I laid there and looked at my arm and failed every test to move it, I knew then I would never operate again and began to think about what I could do in life to continue to be useful, and decided on nuclear medicine.”

After twenty years in nuclear medicine he retired after suffering a heart attack and since then has suffered the loss of two wives, but not his sense of humor, which borders on the ribald.

My weekend visit with Dr. Kiepfer in his home adorned with icons of St. Francis occurred only a week after his discharge from a rehabilitation center. He had spent the previous six months recuperating from a below the knee amputation.
In an email from retired Commander David Ed Lewis, the officer in charge of 195 men out of the total crew of 294 on the US LIBERTY, he wrote: “I know Doc has suffered more and complained less than anyone I know. Job didn’t have much on Doc…He has always dedicated his life to others and has never asked anything in return from them.”

The book of Job is a critique about injustice, the suffering of innocent people and the struggle to find meaning and value in pain, and playing the cards one has been dealt with in life without blaming God.

Being a retired nurse, I had many questions for Dr. Kiepfer, and utmost was what was left out of the Court of Inquiry: such as how could the deck log which documents the hours during the attack be so neatly written and list all the dead and wounded in alphabetical order within the hours of noon to 4 PM but make no mention of the many Israeli over flights that occurred during the morning before the attack.

Dr. Kiepfer explained, “The deck log was not written during the attack. Captain McGonagle signed off on the Log and that makes it legal, but not authentic. McGonagle was concerned that he would be blamed for the LIBERTY being in troubled waters.

“I told him, ‘Over my dead fucking body!’

“Israel did identify the ship six hours before the attack. Israel did know that the ship was American and admitted to our government that they knew the ship was American; Israel claims only that the attacking forces failed to get the word.

“Modern diplomacy simply does not permit one to embarrass a ‘friendly’ nation, even when that nation is caught red-handed with its torpedo in one’s ship.

“McGonagle was tormented by the idea that he was somehow responsible for the agony his ship and crew suffered. One top level theory holds that someone in the Israeli armed forces ordered the LIBERTY sunk because he suspected that it had taken down messages showing that Israel started the fighting [during the Six Day War].”

James Ennes wrote:

“Typical of Israel’s casual attitude toward the episode, an attitude which suggested from the beginning that it was really our fault for being there [in international waters] in the first place. Messages from Israel directly charged that a share of the blame was McGonagle’s…the Shreveport Times suggested…that our government was involved in a cover-up…and that the attack itself may have been conducted to prevent the ship [and the United States] from detecting the pending invasion of Syria which was scheduled for June 8th but implemented on June 9, 1967.” [5]

Dr. Kiepfer also informed me, “McGonagle may have misremembered or may have not reported the over a dozen Israeli over flights that morning because he may have thought he should have abandoned our mission-which was to listen in on all communications. My opinion as a civilian is that the Court of Inquiry-which was to determine if the Navy was at fault- would have inquired why he didn’t get the LIBERTY out of the area since we could see the smoke from Al Arish, in Gaza.

“I was the only Medical Corp officer to be appointed Officer of the Deck-that means I was in charge of everything on the ship when the Captain was off duty. I stood mid watch from midnight to 4 AM the night before the attack of June 8, 1967 and all was quiet. I always slept until 7:29 because breakfast ended at 7:30. Beginning at sunrise to 8 AM, the bridge reported a couple of propeller driven aircraft overhead and by noon several more. At lunch people were talking about all the Israeli over flights, but nobody was worried; they were our friends. Afterwards, as usual I went to the wardroom for coffee while the Corpsmen began the start of sick call and off duty officers pursued the national sport of sunbathing on the quarterdeck.

“Lieutenant George Golden and I were together when the attack began and we thought a steam line had ruptured when we heard the first explosion. We both headed off to our general quarter’s stations as the announcement sounded that we were under attack. I assumed it was perpetrated by the Arabs or Russians. Understand that nobody could identify Mirage fighter-bombers that travel at MACH One. Imagine as I say these words to you that the jets are a mile away, now they are overhead and now they are a mile away from us. That is how fast they travel.

“Fifteen minutes into the attack, while I was operating on a sailor and trying to control his bleeding, I was hit with eleven pieces of shrapnel into my abdomen. A rocket struck above the ceiling of sick bay and the light over my head and the operating table protected me; both acted as a life saver for me, otherwise I would have gotten hit in my shoulders, side and back. I was knocked against a wall and waves of red and white pain throbbed through me.

“I knew I had to finish with the guy on the table-if I walked away, I wouldn’t have returned. All I could think about was keeping limbs attached to sailors. From the moment the attack began, I felt a greater presence within me that was physically holding me up. I thought it was the spirit of all the navy docs who had gone before me. I felt physically held up by my invisible assistants and with all that adrenalin coursing through me and with some carefully titrated morphine that I self injected, I was able to do what I did.

It was not until I finished that operation did I even examine myself. The fragments that penetrated me were so hot they cauterized my wounds. The pain was intense, but after applying surgical dressings to my wounds and putting on a life vest to control the bleeding I gave myself a shot of morphine and remained on my feet and working for the next twenty-eight hours.

“Just before the torpedo struck, I was summoned to the bridge and went through the mess decks from sick bay, where a number of wounded sailors were. Captain McGonagle was the only man still functioning there, the lookouts were dead, the helmsman-the guy at the steering wheel was dead and I saw the blown apart remains of our Navigator, Mr. Toth, two decks below me. All I could do was administer morphine to the still living and get them onto stretchers to evacuate them. I had two Corpsmen working with me and knew I needed more surrogates, for the wounded were shoulder to shoulder the full circumference of the passageway.

“While I was on the deck, I got hit by a fifty caliber machine gun bullet to my leg that came from the torpedo boats. I was bleeding into my shoes and not until the next day when I was able to lie down did the bleeding slow down. You know the story of the Incredible Hulk and mother’s who lift cars off of their kids? When you are angry and hurt you can do amazing things.

“If you got one hundred people into my skin that day, probably all of them would have thrown up from the hell that erupted on the LIBERTY. Men were groaning and crying for their mothers, but it was just background noise for me. I was slip sliding as I crossed the bloody deck to get to the Captain who had been hit. McGonagle was leaning back in the Captain’s chair, bleeding from many orifices; some natural and some new ones. I applied battle dressings, started an IV, gave him some morphine and sent an enlisted man to find as many officers as possible to come up to the Bridge and assist him and to watch him for shock. The Captain said, ‘If I sit up, I pass out, but as long as I stay in this position, I am OK.’

“People I had eaten lunch with were dismembered all around me, burned, dead. To this day, every time I have a phone conversation with Phil Tourney, who held the light while, I was operating on Blanchard he tells me he can still see the look in my eyes.

“Everyone in the Navy hierarchy knew we were scapegoats and the Navy would have done anything to exact retribution, but the Navy never got the chance.

“In LBJ’s mind we were just an average day’s losses in Vietnam. I doubt Israel would have attacked without the knowledge or complicity of our State Departments willingness to sacrifice a few hundred sailors to have a ‘stabilized’ Middle East and all that oil.

“Our State Department’s morality and ethics are just slightly below those of a Madame in a house of ill repute or a large scale drug dealer.

“June 8, 1967 was like July 4th in hell without the ice cream.

“And yes, I agree that it was God that kept us afloat.”

In a 2008 email from USS LIBERTY survivor, Donald W Pageler, a Seaman E-3 Communications Technician who had Top Secret Crypto clearance wrote:

“I was once in email contact with an ordained rabbi who was a professor in an Eastern University. He said he was of the belief that there could be no peace in the Middle East until Israel owned its own atrocities.”

In a phone call interview with Don on December 31, 2007, I inquired who that rabbi was and Pageler responded, “I can’t remember his name, but after Jim Bamford’s, Body of Secrets: Anatomy of the Ultra-Secret National Security Agency, was released [in 2001] I read a review about it on Amazon.com by a rabbi. He included his email address so I wrote him to thank him and that was his reply.”

When I checked Amazon’s site, there were 141 customer reviews for that book, but missing was one from Yomin Postelnik, dated May 22, 2001.

LIBERTY supporter Richard Schmucker, was once known as LIBERTY CENTRAL because he had obtained hundreds of pounds of documentation about that day in infamy when the USA Government failed to support our troops, Congress went limp and the MSM went MIA.

Schmucker had the foresight to copy and save the following review from Yomin Postelnik, who wrote:

“I am a religious Jew with rabbinical ordination. I have always felt that one must be fair in one’s position towards Israel, not defending the indefensible. The Israeli military attack against the USS Liberty has irrevocably been proven to have been deliberate and was completely unjustified, it being against Israel’s long-standing ally. The Israelis didn’t want information the ship had picked up concerning its plan to advance the war, [of 1967] pushing the Arab armies out of the West bank, Golan, etc., to reach the United States, as President Johnson had already warned Israel against such moves.

“That they bombed this ship, poured napalm on it, shot at and torpedoed it is reprehensible and gruesome to say the least. Even John Loftus, a man very sympathetic towards Israel, has written the attack was deliberate. He cites that Israel tried to spare as many lives as possible, but the act itself was nothing short of treacherous. Many refuse to believe anything bad of Israel and this book has therefore been subject to unfair criticism by those who know nothing of the incident, nor have they cared to find out. All American Jews should pressure Congress to reopen the investigation, which President Johnson agreed to suppress when Israel apologized for the incident. Our loyalties must be to our country, not Israel.”

Pageler was not sure if that was the review he had replied to, but stated, “It sure was written at the right time and sure sounds like it. But whom I really blame more than anybody is the Media for failing to do its job by not investigating what happened to the LIBERTY on June 8, 1967.

“My grandparents were from Germany and the LIBERTY issue has made me even more sensitive to anti-Semitism. It’s not the Jewish people or Judaism that is the problem, it’s the governments of America and Israel that wanted to sweep this incident under the rug and cover it up that has caused the survivors and families much suffering.

“What June 8, 1967 did to me was a nightmare that I repressed for years and have suffered greatly from. As a kid I always kept things in; like my father I am quiet and reserved. I always internalized things and thought stuff was my fault, even though logically I knew that wasn’t rational. Emotionally I felt responsible somehow about what happened on June 8, 1967 in the Mediterranean and since nobody was taking responsibility for what happened to the LIBERTY; not our government, not Israel and the media failed at their mandate to investigate, I felt responsible but I also suppressed it, because when I was debriefed after the attack I was told to never talk about it.”

The spy ship named the USS LIBERTY was not built or trained for combat.

She was armed with only .50 caliber machine guns, which were totally inadequate against the brutal barrage of missile fire and napalm that engulfed her and she became a flaming inferno.

It was not until the following day that the Sixth Fleet -which had been stationed 15 minutes away-arrived with helicopters to transfer the most severely wounded.

Records reveal that an Israeli attack on Syria was scheduled for 11:30 AM on June 8, 1967, but the spy ship, the USS LIBERTY had arrived less than three hours before that scheduled assault on the Syrian Heights.

Quite obvious to anyone with a functioning brain is that Israel postponed their invasion of Syria and instead cold bloodily attacked American servicemen instead!

James Ennes wrote:

“Word of the attack reached President Johnson in the White House about two hours after it all began. Pentagon officials had apparently been aware of the situation for nearly forty minutes when NSA Advisor Walt Rostow telephoned the President to tell him that a U.S. Navy ship was in trouble…ready aircraft, which normally carry nuclear weapons, were launched toward Liberty, and the Pentagon reacted to the launch with anger bordering on hysteria.

“Help is on the way!” [COMSIXTHFLT message 081305Z]…was received by a Liberty radioman and quickly passed to every man aboard.

“Navy radio operators at the Naval Communications Center in Morocco worked to establish communications for the emergency…they could hear USS Liberty, her operators still pleading for help, and in the background the exploding rockets.

“Through the Morocco communications relay station, destined for the Pentagon, State Department and the White House…every man recognized the voice [of] Secretary of Defense, Robert S. McNamara, and he spoke with authority: ‘Tell the Sixth Fleet to get those aircraft back immediately,’ he barked.

“A few minutes later the Chief of Naval Operations himself came on the air. The circuit was patched to the Sixth Fleet flagship and Admiral David L. McDonald bellowed:

“You get those fucking airplanes back on deck, and you get them back now!” [6]

On 25 July 2001, James Bamford wrote a response to the Israeli attack on the USS Liberty, in Body of Secrets: Anatomy of the Ultra-Secret National Security Agency:

“The time for secrecy has long passed on the USS LIBERTY incident, in both Israel and the United States…there is more than enough probable cause to conduct a serious investigation into what really happened-and why.”

Lieutenant General Marshall S. Carter, Director National Security Agency/NSA from 1965-1969 wrote: “There was no other answer than it was deliberate.”

Dr. Louis Tordella, Deputy Director of NSA from 1958 -1974, scrawled across the top page of the formal Israel ‘mistake’ report: “A nice whitewash.” He also said, “I believed the attack might have been ordered by some senior commander on the Sinai Peninsula who wrongly suspected that the LIBERTY was monitoring his activities.”

Major General John Morrison, NSA Deputy Director of Operations, 1963-1967 affirmed: “Nobody believes the [Israeli] explanation. The only conjecture that we ever made that made any sense is that the Israelis did not want us to intercept their communications at that time.”

In 1967, David G. Nes, the deputy head of the American mission in Cairo said: “I don’t think that there’s any doubt that it was deliberate… [It is] one of the greatest cover-ups of our military history.”

George Ball, Under Secretary of State from 1961-1966, is on the record that, “American leaders did not have the courage to punish Israel for the blatant murder of its citizens.”

Admiral Thomas H. Moorer, former Chairman of the Joints Chief of Staff stated: “I never believed that the attack on the USS Liberty was a case of mistaken identity. That is ridiculous. I have flown over the Atlantic and Pacific oceans, thousands of hours searching for ships and identifying all types of ships at sea. The Liberty was the ugliest, strangest-looking ship in the US Navy. As a communications intelligence ship, it was sprouting every kind of antenna. It looked like a lobster with all those projections moving every which way. Israel knew perfectly well that the ship was American.”- [7]

During a phone interview on 3 November 2007, with Lt. Commander Dave Ed Lewis [the officer in charge of 195 men out of the total crew of 294 on the US LIBERTY] he informed me:

“Rear Admiral Lawrence Geiss was in charge of the USS Saratoga and USS America. He swore me to secrecy until his death, which happened about nineteen years later. What he told me I kept secret until I learned of his death at the first reunion and twenty year anniversary of the veterans of the USS LIBERTY.

“He told me that as soon as he got the word of our distress he launched aircraft and notified D.C. Immediately he heard from McNamara to recall the aircraft. He said he assumed it was because some idiots in Washington thought that he was launching nuclear weaponry. He reconfigured and then re-launched aircraft without nuclear capabilities. Admiral Geiss notified Washington of this and once again the immediate response that came from McNamara was the order to recall the aircraft. Admiral Geiss challenged the order and pleaded that people are dieing!

“LBJ was heard to say, ‘I don’t give a damn! I won’t embarrass an ally.”

Journalist and son of a Liberty survivor, James Scott wrote:

“More than twenty minutes before the fatal torpedo strike killed twenty-five sailors; Israel’s chief air controller conclusively identified the Liberty as an American ship.” [8]

Many years after the attack, Lieutenant Colonel Shmuel Kislev, the chief air controller at general headquarters in Tel Aviv, confessed that he knew the U.S.S. LIBERTY was an American ship as soon as an Israeli pilot radioed in its hull numbers.

Two months before the sailor’s mass burial at Arlington Cemetery, Navy analysis also uncovered that the Israeli torpedo boat gunners had targeted the spy ship with 40-mm tracer rounds made in the United States.

In 1967, the Republican representative from Iowa, H.R. Gross rose up in The House and asked:

“Is this Government now, directly or indirectly, subsidizing Israel in the payment of full compensation for the lives that were destroyed, the suffering of the wounded, and the damage from this wanton attack? It can well be asked whether these Americans were the victims of bombs, machine gun bullets and torpedoes manufactured in the United States and dished out as military assistance under foreign aid.” [9]

By November 1967, lawmakers were willing to spend six million USA tax dollars to build schools in Israel but during the debate, Representative Gross spoke with the voice of conscience and introduced an amendment that ”not one dollar of U.S. credit or aid of any kind [should] go to Israel until there is a firm settlement with regard to the attack and full reparations have been made [and Israel] provides full and complete reparations for the killing and wounding of more than 100 United States citizens in the wanton, unprovoked attack.

“I wonder how you would feel if you were the father of one of the boys who was killed in that connection-or perhaps you do not have any feelings with respect to these young men who were killed, wounded and maimed, or their families.” [10]

Gross’s amendment failed and justice remains delayed for the USS LIBERTY veterans who have been asking for an open transparent congressional hearing of what THEY saw THAT DAY.

“Since the October War in 1973, Washington has provided Israel with a level of support dwarfing the amounts provided to any other state. It has been the largest annual recipient of direct U.S. economic and military assistance since 1976 and the largest total recipient since World War ll. Total direct U.S. aid to Israel amounts to well over $140 billion in 2003 dollars. Israel receives about $3 billion in direct foreign assistance each year, which is roughly one-fifth of America’s entire foreign aid budget. In per capita terms, the United States gives each Israeli a direct subsidy worth about $500 per year. This largesse is especially striking when one realizes that Israel is now a wealthy industrial state with a per capita income roughly equal to South Korea or Spain.”[11]

During Fiscal Year 2007, the Congressional Research Service’s “U.S. Foreign Aid to Israel,” written by Jeremy M. Sharp, Specialist in Middle Eastern Affairs, [updated January 2, 2008] reported that the US gave Israel at least $2,500.2 million in 2007. This number does not include the $137.894 million we spent on joint U.S.-Israeli missile defense projects or the $1.4 billion in loan guarantees made available to Israel in 2007. [Ibid]

While U.S. economic aid to Israel has been phased out, it has been replaced with increased military aid of $3.1 billion each year out of American wallets that go to provide even more weapons of destruction to one of the most powerful militaries the world has ever known.

The United States has given more money to Israel than to any other country, and the “indirect or consequential costs to the American taxpayer as a result of Washington’s blind support for Israel exceed by many times the amount of direct U.S. aid to Israel. Some of these ‘indirect or consequential’ costs would include the costs to U.S. manufacturers of the Arab boycott, the costs to U.S. companies and consumers of the Arab oil embargo and consequent soaring oil prices as a result of U.S. support for Israel in the 1973 war, and the costs of U.S. unilateral economic sanctions on Iran, Iraq, Libya and Syria. [Ibid]

Just before Christmas 2009, President Obama signed into law the biggest aid pledge of the year. NOT for struggling countries on the World Bank’s list, but another $3 billion for Israel in 2010 and $30 billion over the next decade.

Now deceased, Retired Adm. Thomas Moorer, the former Joint Chiefs of Staff chairman who investigated the attack, wrote in 1997 that he believed Israel intentionally attacked the Liberty to conceal that it was preparing to seize the Golan Heights from Syria.

On January 16, 2004, Adm. Moorer also wrote for The Stars and Stripes: “There is compelling evidence that Israel’s attack was a deliberate attempt to destroy an American ship and kill her entire crew. In attacking the USS Liberty, Israel committed acts of murder against U.S. servicemen and an act of war against the United States.”

Adm. Moorer also gave Ernest Gallo his marching orders to: “Never give up this fight for the truth.”

In 1776, President George Washington warned US to: Observe good faith and justice towards all nations; cultivate peace and harmony with all…and passionate attachments for others, should be excluded; and that, in place of them, just and amicable feelings towards all should be cultivated. The nation which indulges towards another a habitual hatred or a habitual fondness is in some degree a slave…a passionate attachment of one nation for another produces a variety of evils.

PLEASE SUPPORT THESE TROOPS by signing a Petition to be delivered to:  The United States House of Representatives, The United States Senate, and President Barack Obama:

PLEASE SEND a Letter to The MSM to Honor The Troops by Reporting on the Attack on the USS LIBERTY

Learn More about the USS LIBERTY

  1. Captain Joseph Tully, commanding officer of the USS Saratoga, page 175, “Operation Cyanide” by Peter Hounam.
  2. http://www.chicagotribune.com/services/newspaper/printedition/tuesday/chi-liberty_tuesoct02,0,1050179.story?coll=chi_business_ugc
  3. http://www.gtr5.com/quotes.htm
  4. Silver Star Medal Commendation
  5. James M. Ennis, Jr. “Assault on the Liberty” pages 213, 214, 131, 136, 141, and 142. Reintree Press, 1979.
  6. James M. Ennis, Jr. “ASSAULT ON THE LIBERTY” pages 97, 98, 76, 77, and 78.
  7. Operation Cyanide, Pages 244-245.
  8. James Scott, “The Untold Story of Israel’s Deadly 1967 Assault on a U.S. Spy Ship” Page 216.
  9. James Scott, Pages 271-272.
  10. James Scott, Pages 272-273
  11. http://ifamericansknew.org/stats/usaid.html

Posted in USAComments Off on Support These Troops and Remember The War on LIBERTY

Obama Emerges as the US Warrior President

NOVANEWS

The president has apparently decided a warrior president is a better image to project for his reelection in a downward spiraling economy.

by James M Wall

Memorial Day in the United States is a time for hot dogs, overcooked burgers, too much beer, and a massive dose of militaristic patriotism.

It is also a good time for Americans to begin thinking seriously of who should be elected president this November.

This year, President Obama kept his focus on his own reelection campaign and, at the same time, announced  himself as the US  warrior president. The president has apparently decided a warrior president is a better image to project  for his reelection in a downward spiraling economy.

Don’t take my word for it. Check out a story released on Memorial Day. It was orchestrated by the Obama White House for the New York Times. The story appeared in the Times‘ internet edition on Memorial Day, and in the print edition the next day.

With the help of White House operatives, past and present, the Times portrays the president as a man carrying the heavy moral burden of deciding when a US-desginated suspected terrorist will die in a drone attack.

Since many of these US-designated suspected terrorists are frequently killed in their homes in crowded communities, others die in the attack, including, at times, women and children. On one recent occasion, the targeted victim was an American male citizen.

The Times reports that the President is given a chart with the names of potential targets:

He had vowed to align the fight against Al Qaeda with American values; the chart, introducing people whose deaths he might soon be asked to order, underscored just what a moral and legal conundrum this could be.

Mr. Obama is the liberal law professor who campaigned against the Iraq war and torture, and then insisted on approving every new name on an expanding “kill list,” poring over terrorist suspects’ biographies on what one official calls the macabre “baseball cards” of an unconventional war.

This is an “unconventional war”, as the Times puts it. It is also an unprecedented war, which would not be considered a war at all, except for the steps taken by President George W. Bush after September 11, 2001. After the attacks, Bush essentially declared war on Islam.

The result of this strategy was to create a national fear of Islam, both foreign and domestic, feeding the Islamophobia that was already an American reality.  It also led to two wars against Middle Eastern pre-dominantly Islamic nations, Iraq and Afganistan.

What should have been and still should be, a search for the criminal gang behind 9/11, became on George Bush’s watch, a holy war, a Global War on Terror (GWOT).

This global war was carried out under the tight control of a neo-conservative cabal of politicians, many of whom were strong Zionists eager to direct US military might against Israel’s neighbors.

A major weapon in the GWOT is the robot-controlled drone. After the Times‘ Memorial Day story appeared, the the Guardian commented on Obama’s role in the drone attacks:

More than a decade after George W Bush launched it, the “war on terror” was supposed to be winding down. US military occupation of Iraq has ended and NATO is looking for a way out of Afghanistan, even as the carnage continues. But another war – the undeclared drone war that has already killed thousands – is now being relentlessly escalated.

From Pakistan to Somalia, CIA-controlled pilotless aircraft rain down Hellfire missiles on an ever-expanding hit list of terrorist suspects – they have already killed hundreds, perhaps thousands, of civilians in the process.

At least 15 drone strikes have been launched in Yemen this month, as many as in the whole of the past decade, killing dozens; while in Pakistan, a string of US attacks has been launched against supposed “militant” targets in the past week, incinerating up to 35 people and hitting a mosque and a bakery.

American drone warfare is rapidly increasing. Nick Turse, co-author of  the just-published book, Terminator Planet: The First History of Drone Warfare, 2001-2050, describes the sharp increase of drones in the US arsenal:

Washington’s post-9/11 military interventions have been a boon for drones. The numbers tell the story. At the turn of this century, the Department of Defense had 90 drones with plans to increase the inventory by 200 over the next decade, according to Dyke Weatherington, a Defense Department deputy director overseeing acquisitions of hardware for unmanned warfare. As 2012 began, there were more than 9,500 remotely piloted aircraft in the U.S. arsenal.

As Barack Obama enters the final months of his reelection campaign, he wants the American people to know that he is, to use an old George Bush term, “the decider”, as to which human target to strike.

The US has shifted its wars from the ground to unmanned drones in the sky. President Obama is slowly bringing the Bush wars in Afghanistan and Iraq to a conclusion.  Yet, for political purposes, he still wants to portray himself as a warrior president. He is doing this by releasing a detailed description of how the drone warfare is conducted.

One week after the Memorial Day Times story on the US drone war, the White House provided information for a second story in the Times.

This story describes Obama’s role in the cyberwar against Iran that he inherited from President Bush. This second story is “based on interviews over the past 18 months with current and former American, European and Israeli officials involved in the program, as well as a range of outside experts.”

With White House support, the Times made the case that President Obama has pushed the cyber campaign against Iran from his earliest days in office.

Officials quoted in this story “gave differing assessments of how successful the sabotage program was in slowing Iran’s progress toward developing the ability to build nuclear weapons.”

Internal Obama administration estimates say the effort was set back by 18 months to two years, but some experts inside and outside the government are more skeptical, noting that Iran’s enrichment levels have steadily recovered, giving the country enough fuel today for five or more weapons, with additional enrichment.

Whether Iran is still trying to design and build a weapon is in dispute. The most recent United States intelligence estimate concludes that Iran suspended major parts of its weaponization effort after 2003, though there is evidence that some remnants of it continue.

This is war talk of the first order, the American empire leader standing astride the Middle East with the most sophisticated technology available to wreck havoc on those who oppose him.

The White House must have determined that these two stories served the best interests of the President.  They were not new stories. The cyber attacks on Iran and the drone attacks, have been on-going for the three years of Obama’s first term.

The two accounts stressing Obama’s role in these two campaigns portend problems for an Obama second term, assuming he prevails against Republican presumed nominee Mitt Romney.

The problems come in the fact that a warrior president will find it difficult to pivot quickly and emerge once again as the creative peace president he initially promised to be.

To be sure, and much to his domestic advantage, Obama’s cyber attacks and his increased use of drones, do not put American troops in harm’s way. But, it is also true that by his decision to use remote technology to attack other nations, Obama is setting an example for other nations to follow him down a dangerous and unpredictable path.

In a second Obama term, Obama will either have to continue his remote warfare and give up his desire to be a peace maker, or he will have to utilize his next four years to lead his nation out of its exceptionalist warrior mentality.

Stephen M. Walt, co-author with John Meirsheimer of  the Israel Lobby, wrote for the Foreign Policy web site a perceptive description of how others see us:

[An] unchallenged faith in American exceptionalism makes it harder for Americans to understand why others are less enthusiastic about US dominance, often alarmed by US policies, and frequently irritated by what they see as US hypocrisy, whether the subject is possession of nuclear weapons, conformity with international law, or America’s tendency to condemn the conduct of others while ignoring its own failings. Ironically, US. foreign policy would probably be more effective if Americans were less convinced of their own unique virtues and less eager to proclaim them.

The US, as Stephen M. Walt knows well, has “friends” like Israel, who want the US to remain exceptional. Israel believes it is to its own advantage as an intruder, occupying power in the predominantly Muslim region, to maintain a military edge that allows it to continue to illegally expand its own empire ambitions.

President Obama, heavily burdened by his own Zionist-controlled Congress, will have to exercise considerable wisdom and courage to pivot away from his campaign image as a warrior president to that of a leader who means it when he says he wants to apply “American values” to  his foreign policy.

Those “American values” also reject Islamophobia, which unfortunately was ignited full force after 9/11 and which President Obama has done little to tamper down with his random killing of Muslim suspects, primarily in Pakistan, Yemen and Somalia.

How strong is Islamophobia and racism among American voters?

Go to the right wing web lists and list serves, or just spend two hours a day watching Fox News/Entertainment, and you get an understanding of the ignorance and fear promulgated from these corners, pouring more Islamophobia into the American public’s emotional bloodstream.

Islamophobia in its present form is not as old as anti-semetism, but it is easily ramped up in the hands of hate mongers with a political agenda.

In case you don’t have a conservative friend who emails you Islamophobic literature, Wikipedia offers this definition:

Islamophobia is prejudice against, hatred or irrational fear of Islam or Muslims. The term dates back to the late 1980s or early 1990s, but came into common usage after the September 11, 2001 attacks in the United States.

It is depressing to have to suggest that our “change we can believe in” president has adopted the mantle of a warrior president, outdoing George Bush in some quarters.

But politics is a messy business which calls for twisted paths to victory.  Maybe President Obama is riding the warrior president chariot until his successful reelection. After that he will need considerable help to get off that chariot.

The story is told of a meeting at Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s home in Hyde Park, New York, attended by labor and civil rights leader A. Philip Randolph.

In the meeting, Randolph asked Roosevelt to speak out more on labor and civil rights issues. According to Eleanor Roosevelt, who was present for the conversation, the president responded,  ” I’d like to ask you to go out and make me do what you think it is I should do. Go out and make me do it.”

Is it possible Barack Obama is asking his supporters to make him pivot away from remote technologically advanced attacks on Muslim targets and attacks on Muslim nations like Iran and Syria, both sources of Israel’s collective paranoia.

It was FDR’s strategy to ask for help to contend with the pressures he faced, including a recalcitrant Congress. Obama needs the same help now, some of which is already available in a New York Times editorial:

Mr. Obama has demonstrated that he can be thoughtful and farsighted, but, like all occupants of the Oval Office, he is a politician, subject to the pressures of re-election.

No one in that position should be able to unilaterally order the killing of American citizens or foreigners located far from a battlefield — depriving Americans of their due-process rights — without the consent of someone outside his political inner circle.

How can the world know whether the targets chosen by this president or his successors are truly dangerous terrorists and not just people with the wrong associations?

The Times editorial writer is being gentle. Others are less so.

If Obama ever expects to regain the support of the more progressive political left in the US, he will have to make a strong case to writers and activists like Medea Benjamin, a cofounder of  Codepinkand the author of the bookDrone Warfare

Benjamin has been an advocate for social justice for more than 30 years.

After the Times story on drone warfare appeared, Benjamin wrote in the progressive web site, Nation of Change:

On May 29, The New York Times published an extraordinarily in-depth look at the intimate role President Obama has played in authorizing US drone attacks overseas, particularly in Pakistan, Yemen and Somalia. It is chilling to read the cold, macabre ease with which the President and his staff decide who will live or die.

The fate of people living thousands of miles away is decided by a group of Americans, elected and unelected, who don’t speak their language, don’t know their culture, don’t understand their motives or values.

While purporting to represent the world’s greatest democracy, US leaders are putting people on a hit list who are as young as 17, people who are given no chance to surrender, and certainly no chance to be tried in a court of law.

Who is furnishing the President and his aides with this list of terrorist suspects to choose from, like baseball cards? The kind of intelligence used to put people on drone hit lists is the same kind of intelligence that put people in Guantanamo.

Remember how the American public was assured that the prisoners locked up in Guantanamo were the “worst of the worst,” only to find out that hundreds were innocent people who had been sold to the US military by bounty hunters?

Why should the public believe what the Obama administration says about the people being assassinated by drones?

Why indeed should the public, left or right, believe what the Obama administration says?

The answer to that question should concern Obama and his staff through November and beyond. If he expects to be the Obama we once thought we knew, he will have some serious explaining to do.

Source: Wall Writings

Posted in USAComments Off on Obama Emerges as the US Warrior President

The Killer Elite Hit List

NOVANEWS

The notorious Nixon hit list seems so placid when compared to the actual lethal force used by President Barack Obama, that one wonders how long it will be before the drone fleet turns their target munitions inside our own borders. The recent disclosure that Barry Soetoro, AKA, Barack Hussein Obama pours over a master list of threats against the establishment regime and picks the most dangerous candidates for surgical removal, demonstrates the care and precision used against “certified terrorists”. Such is the latest method of keeping the institutions of the “Homeland” safe from nasty combatants that challenge the officially recognized empire.

That bastion barrister of the rule of law, Eric Holder, clarifies the actions of the POTUS dictatorship.

“Speaking to an audience at Northwestern University Law School, Holder gave the most complete explanation to date of the Obama administration’s legal rationale for killing people such as American-born Anwar Awlaki, who was targeted in a U.S. airstrike in Yemen last year.

Such killings can be ordered “in full accordance with the Constitution,” but it requires “at least” an imminent threat in a situation where capture is not feasible, and when the strike is “conducted in a manner consistent” with the rules of war, Holder said.

“In this hour of danger,” Holder said, “we simply cannot afford to wait until deadly plans are carried out. And we will not.”

Contrast the viewpoint of the Attorney General with that of the esteemed jurist, Judge Andrew P. Napolitano in the essay The Secret Kill List.

“The president cannot lawfully order the killing of anyone, except according to the Constitution and federal law. Under the Constitution, he can only order killing using the military when the U.S. has been attacked, or when an attack is so imminent and certain that delay would cost innocent American lives, or in pursuit of a congressional declaration of war. Under federal law, he can only order killing using civilians when a person has been sentenced lawfully to death by a federal court and the jury verdict and the death sentence have been upheld on appeal. If he uses the military to kill, federal law requires public reports of its use to Congress and congressional approval after 180 days.”

The predicament for the administration deepens with every attempt to uphold a failed foreign policy and a breach of basic bedrock constitutional protections. Toady proponents claim that Obama is a master speech deliverer, reading from a script of a grand design. Like another psychopath, skilled in rallying his sycophant supporters, Obama lacks a deep understanding of the repugnance in the rhetoric from the inconsistencies of the deeds.

In an article, Obama Doesn’t Know Why He’s Entitled to Kill Al-Awlaki, He Just Is, Damnit, poses a serious question about the targeted killing of Anwar al-Awlaki.

“The most striking aspect of the government’s motion to dismiss the ACLU/CCR lawsuit challenging the use of targeted killing is that the government does not commit to the basis for its authority to kill an American citizen like Anwar al-Awlaki with no review.

This starts as soon as the filing tries to lay the ground work for unchecked authority under the AUMF. It doesn’t commit to whether Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula is part of al Qaeda itself, or is instead just closely enough associated to count under the AUMF.”

The United States has further determined that AQAP is an organized armed group that is either part of al-Qaeda, or is an associated force, or cobelligerent, of al-Qaeda that has directed armed attacks against the United States in the noninternational armed conflict between the United States and al-Qaeda that the Supreme Court recognized in Hamdan v. Rumsfeld, 548 U.S. 557, 628-31 (2006).

Furthermore, as noted above, the Executive Branch has determined that AQAP is an organized armed group that is either part of al-Qaeda or, alternatively, is an organized associated force, or cobelligerent, of al-Qaeda that has directed attacks against the United States in the noninternational armed conflict between the United States and al-Qaeda that the Supreme Court has recognized (see Hamdan, 548 U.S. at 628-31).

Note the conclusion within this assessment:

“Though note the gigantic slip here: the AUMF only declares war against those “those nations, organizations, or persons [the President] determines planned, authorized, committed, or aided the terrorist attacks that occurred on September 11, 2001, or harbored such organizations or persons” (when AQAP didn’t exist in its current form), not those who have attacked us since. This “either/or” statement only claims that AQAP is part of the same war, not that it had any role in 9/11, so it’s totally bogus in any case, even without the betrayal of their lack of confidence in both of these claims with the either/or construction.”

Even under this tortured rationalization to fashion an argument that twists legal language, the depths of decadence to maintain the false flag justification for the terrorism fantasy says more about how far America has fallen than an actual threat to the nation.

Now that the droning of America has ramped up the mission for the total surveillance society, how long will it be before the “rules of war” apply within our own borders? The dire prospects of a second term Obama presidency loom over the skies with an ominous cloud.

Barack Obama’s actions are reminiscent of the arrogance and brutality of his Chicago criminal syndicate mentors. German propaganda equated the “Chicago Typewriter” Tommy gun style of brute force as proof of the real methods of the power elite.

“During the 1930′s the Nazi hierarchy became obsessed with sensational reports of the Chicago gangsters, Al Capone and his ilk. So when the Reichsminister of Propaganda wanted to demonize the British and American air forces, he combined the German word Luft (air) with ‘gangsters’ and thus we were portrayed in the German press. Just as we laughed at the Nazi propaganda tools, Lord Haw Haw and Axis Sally, and enjoyed the music they beamed at us (remember Lili Marlene?) so we reveled in the title of Luftgangster”.While the drone fleet analogy applies and Obama’s grandiose skills resemble the pomposity of the Führer, he really is a closet Joseph Stalin at heart.

The Obama File describes him in this manner.

“But Obama is not just a Marxist. He’s a unique hybrid. He’s a Marxist for sure, but he’s also a professional activist, completely in tune with the American Political Left and the goals of the Socialist International. He spent years teaching the US Constitution, but he certainly wasn’t teaching constitutional law from a strict constructionist point of view.”

For an in-depth resource on Obama’s communists sympathies and ties, examine the commieblaster site. The basic lesson is that both Hitler and Stalin were twins in depravity. Both had their own “Kill Lists” and together caused the deaths of millions of innocent citizens within their own countries. The Statist-Fascism that is engulfing America is all around us. The masses that goose stepped over the cliff or cried at “Uncle Joe’s” funeral were not real patriots, but were fools. Americans who are “Stuck On Stupid” and refuse to admit that the entire 911

War of Terror is a manufactured excuse to militarize our own version of a police state, bear the shame and blame for the end of the Republic. Currently the latest Bilderberg confluence is plotting and implementing efforts and policies that will result in your demise. The “Killer Elite” is just as much a culture as a squad of hired assassins. The drone deployment of the military domestically is a clear violation of Posse Comitatus. The rule of law has been abandoned, and replaced with the reign of tyrants.

A comprehensive hit list, compiled nationwide, is growing because moral patriots are becoming more active and forthright in confronting an illegal government. For the rest of the sedated zombies that still believe that the federal despotism is legitimate, the buzzing of spies in the skies will become a reminder that every action is now subject to scrutiny.

Many will exhort the elimination of Anwar Awlaki. But, will they still cheer, when the lightening bolts, start to rain down inside the country? Ignoring due process out of a phony and trumped up pretext means that anyone and everyone is subject to arbitrary liquidation if the killer elites decide you are a threat to their New World Order.

Domestic surveillance, designed for a sinister purpose, has dangerous implications. Obama’s Chicago gang of gangsters and their integration into the military-industrial-security complex may well prove the ranting of Lord Haw Haw correct. If Nazism and Communism were the two great evils of the last century, how do you explain that our federal government is in the final stages of adopting the worse of both systems?

It is just a matter of time until you are slated for a place in a FEMA facility. Or maybe, if you have tremendous courage, make the next cut for Obama’s hit list. America is in peril from within and flying the friendly drone skies does not make us safe.

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The Devilish Plan of Saudi-Bahrain Merger

NOVANEWS
By Kourosh Ziabari

 

The recently declared plan by the members of Persian Gulf Cooperation Council to annex the soil of Bahrain to Saudi Arabia and form a greater Arab union has attested to the fact that the tyrannical and merciless rulers of Arab sheikhdoms in the Persian Gulf are still obliviously living in the colonial era, dating back to the early 1550s, when the world’s major colonial powers relied on the power of arms and ammunitions to conquer and attain new territories and put the rivals’ nose out of joint in a conspicuous show-off of muscle-flexing.

It’s more than one year that the spirited, courageous youths of Bahrain have refused to leave the streets of capital Manama and other major cities of the country, continuously demanding the downfall of the dictatorial regime of Al Khalifa which is unconditionally financed, armed and backed by the United States and its puppet allies Saudi Arabia and United Arab Emirates.

The Witness Bahrain website associated with the opposition groups puts the number of civilian deaths resulting from Al Khalifa crackdown on the peaceful protesters in the past 15 months at 65; but it’s for sure that the number of protesters killed at the hands of the mercenaries of Al Khalifa regime is far greater than this.

Over the past year, the Bahraini officials resorted to every means at their disposal to distract the public attention from their bloody crackdown on the peaceful protestors demanding the ouster of the King and the dissolution of his despotic government. They even refused to cancel the Grand Prix 2012 race in April 2012 amid growing international protests by the mass media, human rights groups, academicians and politicians who had felt and recognized the depth of catastrophe taking place in the tiny Persian Gulf country.

But the British Prime Minister, whose country is a major supplier of weapons and money to Bahrain, made a controversial statement in defense of the Formula 1 race in Bahrain, saying that “Bahrain is not Syria; there is a process of reform underway and this government backs that reform and wants to help promote that reform.” And nobody was there to complain to Cameron for his hypocritical stance on Syria while indifferently turning a blind eye to the painful suffering of the defenseless nation of Bahrain.

The very government which Cameron claimed is defending and promoting reforms, has relentlessly detained and tortured hundreds of peace activists and protesters since the beginning of revolution in the island backing to February 2011, and killed many innocent children and teenagers under vicious, brutal torture in its horrific jails. Several protesters are sentenced to life prison and many of them await trial in military courts without any lawyers and official jury.

One of the heartrending cases of regime’s atrocious treatment with its own people is the issue of Abdulhadi al-Khawaja. The audacious Bahraini peace activist who is now a national hero and symbol of resistance against the tyranny of Al Khalifa has started an open-ended hunger strike since February 8, 2012 and it’s about four months that he hasn’t eaten anything nor drunk a sip of water. Bahraini activist Alaa Shehabi wrote for the Foreign Policy on April 12 that the possible death of al-Khawaja “could mark a significant breaking point for the regime’s efforts to rehabilitate its tarnished reputation — and could accelerate the disturbing trend toward militant radicalization in the opposition.” And it’s an undeniable fact. Although al-Khawaja is thankfully alive, he is spending the unbearable and intolerable days of being tortured while he is on hunger strike, and pictures taken of him which were published on the Bahraini websites show that he is in a tremendously throbbing and agonizing situation.

Just three days ago, King Hamad of Bahrain who is now seen as a bloodthirsty dictator in the region and one of the most hated leaders of the world was invited by Queen Elizabeth II to attend a royal ceremony in London. He was among the 50 foreign royals who attended the “diamond jubilee” feast. Tens of angry protesters gathered outside the Buckingham Palace to protest the controversial invitation.

“We feel it’s tremendously important to show that there are British people who do not agree with these royal dictators being invited to Windsor Castle and Buckingham Palace,” said human rights campaigner Peter Tatchell.

“The queen has misjudged the public mood. Most British people would not agree with our head of state wining and dining dictators who stand accused of very serious human rights abuse,” he said.

And now, the Bahraini rulers are plotting a dangerous conspiracy with their Saudi cronies to form a union, seeking certain ends such as establishing an alliance against Iran which has seriously stood up against the carnage of the Bahraini people and supported their revolution. The Bahraini officials have laughably accused Iran of meddling in their internal affairs.

Unquestionably, Bahrain’s annexation to Saudi Arabia will pose a serious threat to the security and stability of the Persian Gulf and overturn the regional equations drastically. And it should not be neglected that such plans are mostly dictated by the world’s most infamous colonial power, the United Kingdom.

The American author and former university professor Kevin Barrett has likened this Saudi-British-Israeli plot to the colonial ploys of Hitler.

“I think this is more of an alliance of Hitler’s Anschluss, when Nazi Germany invaded Austria,” said Kevin Barrett in an interview with Press TV.

“The big difference is that the majority of people in Austria supported that. Whereas today, the vast majority of people in Bahrain will be horrified to be occupied by and digested into Wahhabi Saudi Arabia,” Barrett added.

The Al Khalifa regime which has found itself incapable of silencing the loud voice of Bahraini people who demand an end to this authoritarian regime is seeking ways through which it can extricate itself from the crisis it has been entangled into. Maybe joining Saudi Arabia can be a short-term solution, but indubitably it will portend dangerous consequences for the region including the firm response of the Iranian nation and the strong reaction of rest of Muslim nations around the world. And moreover, such a Bahraini-Saudi union will not be tolerated by the people of Bahrain. Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa and Saudi Arabia’s Malek Abdullah can bet that this dangerous union is doomed to failure.

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Has US Support for Israel Reached a Tipping Point?

NOVANEWS

ED NOTE: The following is Dr. Stephen Sniegoski’s response  to Philip Giraldi’s article  “A Tipping Point for Israel,

 

by Stephen Sniegoski

Philip Giraldi is one of the few heroes who dares to strenuously oppose  the pro-Israel war party in the United States.

I rarely disagree with anything in his very informative articles.  In fact, this is the first time that I can recall disagreeing with anything  of significance. But I think he is being much too optimistic in his view that US support for a pro-Israel Middle East policy is moving in a downward direction.

Philip Giraldi, the executive director of the Council for the National Interest and an astute critic of America’s Israelocentric policy in the Middle East, recently made the case that United States support for Israel, and the concomitant Israeli power which depends on that support, has reached its tipping point  and is now on an ineluctable downward slide.http://mycatbirdseat.com/2012/05/a-tipping-point-for-israel/

A “tipping point,”  a term given wide publicity in the decade past by Malcolm Gladwell’s best-selling book with that title, is defined by Giraldi as a point “where physical momentum, inclined in one direction, reverses its course, stabilizes, and then begins to move the opposite way.”   And the movement usually accelerates after reaching the “tipping point.”  In  Gladwell’s definition: “The word ‘Tipping Point’ . . .  comes from the world of epidemiology. It’s the name given to that moment in an epidemic when a virus reaches critical mass. It’s the boiling point. It’s the moment on the graph when the line starts to shoot straight upwards. AIDS tipped in 1982, when it went from a rare disease affecting a few gay men to a worldwide epidemic.” http://www.gladwell.com/tippingpoint/

Thus, after citing examples of criticism of Israeli policies, Giraldi concludes: “So we have reached the point where the proverbial cat is out of the bag. Everyone, with the possible exception of the U.S. Congress, has become aware that there is something terribly wrong with Israel. In Israel itself, where there is often ferocious debate over the country’s policies, it is time for a reckoning. Does Israel want to become a normal state with correct relationships with its neighbors, including an independent Palestine, or does it want to continue down the road that it is pursuing, which is folly and will lead to ruin?” It is not apparent to me, however, that support for Israel has passed its peak and is now in an irreversible downward spiral; in fact, despite some criticism here and there, and much more so on the Internet than in the mainstream media, there does not really seem to be a decline at all.

That support for Israel continues to reign supreme in the US Congress, as Giraldi acknowledges, would seem to illustrate that the American populace is not sufficiently concerned about the issue as to make it politically significant.

Moreover, it is not simply the legislative branch of government where  pro-Israel influence looms large, but also in the executive branch.  While President Obama avoids implementing the Israel lobby’s call for military action against Iran, he has gone very far with harsh sanctions against that country, provided Israel with the most sophisticated weaponry, including an anti-missile defense that does not even exist for the United States, failed to pressure Israel into making concessions to the Palestinians, and had the US resist, and when necessary, veto all anti-Israel measures in the  UN Security Council.

As New York Times columnist Thomas Friedman put it: “The only question I have when it comes to President Obama and Israel is whether he is the most pro-Israel president in history or just one of the most.” http://www.nytimes.com/2012/03/07/opinion/friedman-israels-best-friend.html

It should be pointed out that previous administrations have not been so favorably disposed toward Israel.  When, in 1956, Israel along with France and Britain invaded Egypt, then ruled by Nasser–Israel’s foremost enemy–President Eisenhower quickly pressured those countries to agree to a cease-fire and a  withdrawal of their forces.

John F. Kennedy opposed   Israel’s secret development of the atomic bomb, which Israel considered vital for its national security.

The Carter administration allowed  anti-Israeli resolutions to pass in the UN without using its veto or putting forth much opposition.  Moreover, Carter sought to have Israel dismantle its West Bank settlements.

The elder George Bush, led by his Secretary of State James Baker, sought to pressure Israel to undertake  a withdrawal from the West Bank by threatening to withhold  loan guarantees for new housing for Soviet immigrants unless  Israel ceased building settlements in the occupied territories. The elder Bush also was so bold as to criticize  Israel’s supporters for lobbying on this issue.

In fact, it was only with the accession of the younger George  Bush that US policy abandoned the view that the West Bank was occupied territory from which Israel should withdraw.

And despite Obama’s high-sounding rhetoric regarding Palestinian rights and aspirations, which some have interpreted as signaling a more balanced approach on the Israel/Palestine issue, the Obama administration has continued the pro-Israel policy of George W. Bush.  In short, recent history seems to show that US support for Israel has moved ever  upward, though faced with various forms of criticism at different times.

But it should be pointed out that in the past, American support for Israel had not had such a detrimental impact on American well-being as it does today.

Middle East policy was important but not the central issue during the Cold War, which revolved around the Soviet Union.  Israel, at least during the latter stages of the Cold War, presented itself as one of America’s few allies in that region. Israel’s foreign policy interests,  however, did not exactly mesh with America’s Cold War division of friends and enemies in the Middle East.  Some of Israel’s enemies were pro-Soviet, while others were allies of the United States, such as Saudi Arabia. Support of the latter reflected the vital security need of the United States to keep the oil resources of the Middle East open to the West and free from Soviet domination.  This ineluctably meant that the United States would support enemies of  Israel.

By the early 1980s, when Saddam’s Iraq, which had been pro-Soviet, turned away from its erstwhile benefactor, the United States began to support it in its lengthy war against the nascent Islamic Republic of Iran, which then seemed to pose a revolutionary threat to the stability of oil production in the region.  Israel, in contrast, saw Saddam’s Iraq  as a major enemy and covertly backed Iran during that conflict.  During this period the United States did support Israel on the issue of the Palestinians, but it was only since the end of the Cold War that America has adopted a clearly Israelocentric policy for the entire Middle East region, in which America’s enemies coincide with those of Israel. Moreover, the Middle East has become the central concern of overall American foreign policy.

Since  Israeli interests seem to have become the cynosure of American foreign policy in the Middle East, and are being pushed by elements who have openly identified with Israel,  it would be reasonable to assume that this would have inevitably generated a considerable backlash in the United States.

For the obvious question should be: Is the US pursuing its war agenda in the Middle East to defend its own interests or those of a foreign country?  But  what stands out to this observer is not the existence of some criticism of Israel and its lobby in the mainstream, but the very paucity of that criticism, which is inevitably countered not by reasoned argument but by a barrage of misrepresentation, character assassination, vituperation, and outright falsehood centering on the lethal charge of “anti-Semitism.”

The current Iran controversy is the first time where it has become apparent that the Israel lobby is pushing the US into an actual war to aid Israel, with little effort to disguise this fact.

Although the enhancement of Israeli security was behind the US war on Iraq, which was driven by the pro-Israel neocons, the welfare of Israel was kept far in the background, if mentioned at all, by the war’s proponents.

Stephen Walt and John Mearsheimer (Credit: AP/Wikipedia) authors of The Israel Lobby and U.S. Foreign Policy

Rather, the justification for war was couched  in terms of American security, in large measure, Saddam’s mythical WMD threat.

With Iran, the situation is radically different.  Politicians even openly come out and say that the US must stop the Iranian nuclear program because Israel faces destruction. The alleged danger to the United States is often a mere afterthought.

Among the sparse criticism of the Israel lobby and Israel itself, even the most prominent works have had but short life spans and then only for  limited audiences, before falling from view.

Mearsheimer’s and Walt’s essay and book on the Israel lobby gained some attention among that tiny minority that focuses on foreign policy issues, but are rarely mentioned today even in those circles.

Jimmy Carter’s expose of Israel’s mistreatment of the Palestinians likewise gained some attention, which had the effect of his being smeared, denied a significant place in the 2008 Democratic Convention, and being essentially forced to make a humble apology for offending American Jews.

The most recent criticism of Israel by liberal Zionist Peter Beinart in his new book, “The Crisis of Zionism,” has gained some attention among the (largely New York)  intellectual elite, and, as Giraldi points out, has been reviled by the pro-Zionist establishment.

Giraldi, apparently trying to appeal to Jewish liberals, temporarily seems to identify with the liberal Zionist myth adhered to by Beinart that Israel was better in the past:  “Israel no longer represents the liberal and humanistic values that they themselves cherish.”  But in reality the Zionists were never  humane to the Palestinians, especially when they expelled them by terror tactics  in 1948, prohibited their return, and confiscated their property. Giraldi does not ignore this when he refers to a “dark side of Israel’s story.”  But a Jewish exclusivist state, which is Israel’s raison d’être, simply could not be created with a large body of non-Jews.

As M. Shahid Alam emphasizes in his excellent book,  “Israeli Exceptionalism:  The Destabilizing Logic of Zionism,” “the germ of the Zionist idea, its core ambition—clearly discernible at its launching—[has been] to create a Jewish state in the Middle East by displacing the natives.” http://bit.ly/JRp0ou    Those Palestinians who remained in Israel were treated, at best, as second class citizens.

In an earlier article, “The J Street Scam,” Giraldi astutely pointed out that the liberal Zionism of “J Street” http://mycatbirdseat.com/2011/03/philip-giraldi-the-j-street-scam/  only “differs from AIPAC in tone, not in substance.”  It so happens that Beinart is closely tied to J Street, which is promoting his new book.

While Beinart talks of abandoning Jewish West Bank settlements, he maintains that East Jerusalem, which has a majority of the Jewish settlers,  must be maintained by the Jewish state.  This point alone would make any “peace offer” unacceptable to the Palestinians.   In essence, the effect of the  Beinart program, if adopted by Israel, would improve the image of Israel but would never be implemented—which more knowledgeable liberal Zionists must recognize.

It should  be added that Beinart makes no mention about providing Palestinians with real equality in Israel itself, which he seems to assume already exists.  In short, Beinart’s “peace” proposal can serve as an effective defense of the status quo since unlike the Likudnik confrontational rhetoric it is wrapped in the garb of an Israeli concession.

In summary, what is most significant about the current criticism of Israel and the Israel Lobby is that it has been sparse and rather inconsequential.  This condition should be contrasted with the rapid spread of antiwar opinion during the Vietnam War where the “tipping point” scenario would be very applicable.  That criticism, in large part, began in the mid-1960s among Leftists on a few American campuses and then in a very short time became the dominant view in  most colleges and universities outside the South.

Opposing the Vietnam War essentially became considered de rigueur for respectable, forward-thinking people.  By 1968, anti-war candidates (primarily Eugene McCarthy and Robert Kennedy) were running for the Presidency and by the early 1970s public opinion would force the United States to pull out troops from Vietnam.

Whereas opposition to the Vietnam War became very quickly a primary political issue, America’s Israelocentric Middle East policy has not generated significant political opposition as almost all presidential candidates (Ron Paul being the lone exception among major candidates) and members of Congress pledge to support Israeli interests.  If nothing political has been achieved so far—and Mearsheimer’s and Walt’s “Israel Lobby” essay came out in 2006 and book in 2007—there is no evidence that would lead to the conclusion that rapid change is about to occur.

None of what I have written is intended to mean that opposition to the Israel lobby and its policies for America is absolutely hopeless and that one should simply abandon the effort.

Efforts by those like Phil Giraldi and his group the Council for the National Interest have  helped to prevent the situation from becoming even worse.  One needs to be reminded that the US has not done everything sought by the Israel lobby especially in regard to making war on Iran.

Avoiding a destructive war has been a major accomplishment.  Maybe in the future it would be possible to move on the offensive and achieve something that approximates a balanced United States policy in Middle East that is attuned to the American interest and respects international law. For now, however,  even preventing the worst from coming about should be seen as an achievement.

Editing: Debbie Menon

A Tipping Point for Israel

Philip Giraldi, May 14, 2012

http://mycatbirdseat.com/2012/05/a-tipping-point-for-israel/ 

A tipping point is where physical momentum, inclined in one direction, reverses its course, stabilizes, and then begins to move the opposite way. Those of us who have been arguing for a sane United States foreign policy in the Middle East have well understood that the odds on shifting the prevailing narrative have been heavily against us thanks to the overwhelming resources possessed by a powerful domestic lobby. Ten years ago in America, it was impossible to place even a letter in a mainstream newspaper or magazine that was in any way critical of Israel. Apart from Pat Buchanan, no one on television provided a critique of Israel and its policies. In the U.S. media, Israel was ever the beleaguered little democracy surrounded by savage Arabs.

But then, all of a sudden, the conspiracy of silence began to break down. It began with the revisionist history of the antecedents of the Iraq War as that conflict continued to drag on. Many began attributing Washington’s initiation of the fighting, at least in part, to Israeli interests. Philip Zelikow, chief counsel for the 9/11 Commission Report, famously noted in March 2004 that the war was “to protect Israel,” surely an exaggeration but containing more than a kernel of truth. Many also began to observe that the agitation for a new war with Iran was following the same pattern, with supporters of Israel leading the charge.

In 2006, former President Jimmy Carter published Palestine: Peace Not Apartheid. It provoked considerable outrage and highly publicized resignations from the board of the Carter Foundation together with charges that Carter was supporting Palestinian terrorism. But the big breakthrough came with the publication of Stephen Walt and John Mearsheimer’s The Israel Lobby and U.S. Foreign Policy in the following year. It became a New York Times best-seller, and it suddenly became acceptable to talk about Israel without the usual bromides. For the first time, people in America were taking notice of the power of the Israel lobby and the inherent downside for U.S. national interests.

Driven by the prospect of unending warfare in an attempt to remake the Muslim world by force, letters and op-eds critical of Israel and its policies began to appear in the mainstream media. There weren’t a lot, mind you, and they were always “balanced” by more numerous contrary commentaries, but there were enough to demonstrate that a shift was taking place. Mainstream Jewish organizations, always vigilant in defense of what they have perceived as Israel’s interest, resorted increasingly to discrediting critics by calling them “anti-Semites.” Indeed, they succeeded in equating any criticism of Israel with anti-Semitism and even managed to pass legislation in Canada and several European nations that made any criticism of Israel ipso facto a hate crime.

Some American Jews have always been bothered by the dark side of Israel’s story, beginning with the Nakba expulsion of the Palestinians from their homes and including the more recent settlement policy, “security” wall, and the denial of civil and human rights to the Arabs living in Israel and the occupied territories. They were convinced, correctly, that Israel had no intention to permit the creation of a viable Palestinian state. Many began to protest, though their voices were at first confined to the alternative media and they had to work through many progressive groups that were advancing a much broader peace agenda in response to George W. Bush’s horrific “global war on terror.”

But now we Americans have finally reached our tipping point. Recently Peter Beinart, a Zionist and defender of Israel for many years, released The Crisis of Zionism, which explains how Israel has become an armed camp dedicated to repressing and even expelling its Palestinian helots. As a liberal Jew, he rejects the militant values that drive the Israel of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and has even gone so far as to support an economic boycott of Israel, similar to the pressure that was put on South African apartheid. The book has predictably provoked a firestorm of criticism from the pro-Israel establishment, but Beinart is not alone. Tom Friedman and Paul Krugman of The New York Times, both Jewish and both longtime friends of Israel, have voiced the same concerns, namely that Israel no longer represents the liberal and humanistic values that they themselves cherish. It has been noted in passing that young American Jews increasingly do not view Israel in positive terms, a sign, if one was needed, that the older generation that believes Israel is always right, no matter what it does, is passing into history.

And it does not end there. Even the mainstream media is now, perhaps reluctantly, on board. On April 22, 60 Minutes, the most watched television news and commentary program in the United States, aired a segment on Israeli persecution of Christians. The program was a real shock for the many fundamentalist Christians who have viewed Israel through rose-tinted glasses. Many evangelicals have promoted the myth that Israel is actually a protector of Christians, which it most emphatically is not; it seeks instead to marginalize them and force them to emigrate, as the 60 Minutes program demonstrated. Israeli Ambassador Michael Oren, who tried to kill the story and called it a “hatchet job,” was interviewed as part of it. His performance was alternately smug and angry, and it is widely regarded as a public relations disaster. He even said that mainstream Christian churches are “known for their anti-Semitism.”

Benjamin Netanyahu’s office supported Oren’s contention that the broadcast was a “threat to Israel.” It was Netanyahu’s second venture into public relations in a short time, having previously denounced German Nobel Prize–winning author Gunter Grass. Netanyahu banned Grass from traveling to Israel and said that his writings had “hurt Israel profoundly.” Netanyahu was responding to Grass’s rather mild declaration in a poem that the Jewish state’s nuclear program is a threat to an “already fragile world peace.”

Netanyahu knows that the tide is running against him and everything he represents, particularly as the criticism from former senior officials in his own country continues to mount, but he is too obdurate to do what must be done. One of Israel’s darkest secrets is the extent to which young, educated Jews are fleeing the country for greener pastures, most notably the United States. By some guesstimates, one third of university-educated second- and third-generation Israeli Jews have left the country. They are leaving behind the recent Russian immigrants, many of whom are not actually religiously or ethnically Jewish, and the Islamophobic racists who constitute the core of the hard right in Israel. Israel publishes no statistics on the brain drain, which has intensified the country’s demographic problem and lessened its competitiveness.

So we have reached the point where the proverbial cat is out of the bag. Everyone, with the possible exception of the U.S. Congress, has become aware that there is something terribly wrong with Israel. In Israel itself, where there is often ferocious debate over the country’s policies, it is time for a reckoning. Does Israel want to become a normal state with correct relationships with its neighbors, including an independent Palestine, or does it want to continue down the road that it is pursuing, which is folly and will lead to ruin? The choice is ultimately Israel’s, but, for the first time, Americans are actually beginning to talk and write freely and openly about the problem.

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The Inevitable Price of Dictatorship

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By Sami Jamil Jadallah

 

With the on going killing fields of Bashar Assad’s Syria, by now Washington, Tel-Aviv, Moscow, Berlin, Paris and London should know the “inevitable” price of dictatorship. In the same way Damascus, Baghdad, Algeria, Tripoli, Sana’a, Mogadishu, Khartoum, Tehran, Cairo and Tunis know the price of dictatorship. There is always a heavy price paid by the people and nation, later than sooner.

For decades Western powers specially the United States and of course, Moscow as the capital of the former Soviet Union supported criminal dictatorships for reasons that has nothing to do with the rights and benefits of the citizens of these countries but their own selfish and criminal interests.

The United States for and on behalf of Israel always supported Arab dictatorships as a way to provide security and safety for Israel and supported regimes the likes of Mubarak and Ben Ali under the guise of “law and order regimes, ”, first as Anti-Communists and later on as anti-Islamists. It gave material support to Saddam Hussein from the day he came to power in 68 to his 8 years war against Iran, all the way to his invasion of Kuwait and overlooked his killing fields in Halabja and all over Iraq setting the stage for Iraq as a failed state.

The Soviet Union was no different; it supported dictatorships in the Middle East in Syria, Algeria, Libya, Yemen, (at one time) all in the name of “liberation” and as a counter balance to the United States during the Cold War. But then the former Soviet Union always supported criminal regimes thorough out East Europe and Central Asia.

Iraq, Syria, Egypt, Yemen, Libya, Tunisia, Algeria would not be in the mess they are in but for the long time dictatorships that ruled these countries, whether it is individual dictatorship as Barre, Saleh, Ben Ali, Saddam, Mubarak, Assad I and II, Qaddafi or collective dictatorship as is the case in Algeria.

These dictatorships not only ruined the lives of hundreds of millions of people, imprisoned them, tortured them, abuse them, impoverished them, abused them, violated their privacy, but looted the country as they went on to secure law and order for the West and of course “revolutionary” for the former Soviet Union.

By now citizens of these countries should also know the price of silence, the price of not standing up for the criminal regimes ruled by security agencies not for the security of the country but security and longevity for the regimes. The entire state apparatus and all of the resources were put to serve and protect the regimes.

One has to wonder if things could be the same now if the people took to the streets in the hundreds of thousands if not in the millions in the early days of these dictatorship before they solidified their police state. Would Saddam succeed in taking Iraq to ruin, or would Assad pass his regime to his son, or would Mubarak be behind bars, or would Saleh leaves Yemen in ruins, or would Bin Ali loot the country or Qaddafi dies a humiliating death?

One has to wonder how many millions of people would have been saved if America and the West did not provide the political and security covers for such dictatorship and one has to wonder the thousands of lives that could be saved in Syria if Russia decides to walk away from Bashar Assad leaving his fate in the hands of his people and the rope waiting for him?

One has to wonder the trillions of dollars wasted on wars the last 40 years and the millions of people who died and the armament that went up in smoke only to fill the coffers and treasuries of Washington, London, Paris, Berlin, Moscow and Tel-Aviv. One has to wonder the trillions in human capital that was snuffed by 5-cent bullets. Years of family care and decades of educations snuffed because America and Moscow provided covers for these dictatorships.

All of these dictatorships without exception created political parties in their own image; corrupt, incompetent, wasteful, and failing the likes Mubarak National Democratic Front, and Nasser’s Arab Socialist Union, and Ali Saleh’s General People Congress, Al-Bashir’s National Congress Party (lost half of Sudan), Ben Ali’s Rally for Constitutional Democracy, Saddam Hussein’s Arab Ba’athist Party, Assad’s Arab Ba’athist Party.

Others like Libya’s Qaddafi ran the country to ruin with his “Jamahiriya” or “State of the Masses”. Of course Algerian perhaps has the longest running dictatorship with “military” controlling and having all the say so over the National Liberation Front and the Algerian State since independence.

All the blood, the tears, the lost hopes and futures, the exiles, the poverty, the unemployment, the poor run down infrastructures, all the resources of the nation and people were simply wasted and blow away so that Saddam can pass on his kingdom to his kids, and Mubarak can pass his presidency to his son Jamal, with Assad successful in passing his farm to his son Bashar. Qaddafi was killed before he passed his “State of the Masses” to his son Saif. Ali Saleh did succeed in looting the country and passing almost every thing in Yemen to his family while escaping the International Criminal Court.

America and Tel-Aviv gave their full support to the later Shah only to inherit the rules of the Mullahs and the Revolutionary Guards in Iran. What goes around must comes around, with the US paying trillions and tens of thousands of lives as the costs of misguided policies and support for criminal dictatorship.

Let us hope the price of freedom in Syria will not be the same as the price in Iraq and Libya and Sudan. The Palestinian people have to learn sooner than later there is and will be a heavy price they will pay for the dictatorship they call the Palestine Liberation Organization.

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